Friday, July 31, 2009

Fun With Friends

By: Guest Blogger

The other day our friends came from New Hampshire! Our moms went to college together. About every year in the summer we get to see each other. We had so much fun together. Some of the things we did together is: ride bikes, go shopping, go up into town, bake, and go to the Goshen Fair. Some of the places we all went together: the Herr's Potato Chip Factory Tour, Peace A Pizza, and King of Prussia Mall.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Up, Up, and Away!

My boys had their first ride in a hot-air balloon today! And I don't even have any pictures to commemorate the event!

We headed out for an evening walk and went towards the park; there was a music festival at the park today. My husband had already been to the festival with the boys (the girls are in NJ visiting my sister and I stayed home with the baby.) However, we headed back towards the park because the streets were blocked to traffic so we figured the boys could ride their bikes without having to watch for cars.

As we got closer to the park, we could see that there was a hot-air balloon in the open space, tethered to the surrounding trees. My 4 year old was awe-struck and was begging for a ride. It appeared that they were indeed giving rides so my husband went to investigate: $10/person. He only had a $20, but evenso, they let him ride with both boys for only $20. My husband motioned for them to come to the balloon and the boys went racing down the hill towards and happily climbed aboard. I stayed behind with Emma and the baby. Of course Emma wanted to go too and she was in attack-mode as the balloon fired-up (it's quite loud) and lifted off with her kids aboard.

Since the balloon was tethered it did not lift very high; but each time the balloon started to sink, the pilot would fire-up again and lift just a little more. The boys were smiling and waving and thanking us profusely on the way home.

Now if only I had an iPhone I could have been prepared and camera-ready!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Ready, Set, Go!

Last weekend there was a bike race here in West Chester. I keep waiting for the Guest Blogger to blog about the event but she is pretty busy these days . . . church camp and summer and all.

My husband and some of our neighbors took the kids uptown to participate in the Kid Criterium. (I stayed home with the baby, thus I have few, if any, details to contribute to this post.)

As you can see, each kid gets to wear an official number for the race. A few days after the race, I found my oldest daughter's number. She had written her name on the back in permanent marker and also this: Iron Hill Twilight Criterium July 2008. My last year because I will be too old. But I can watch though.

Too cute. I can't believe she will be TOO OLD to participate in a kids' bike race! Time is passing too quickly.

#943, my 4 year old, is extremely competitive with his older brother. This pic says it all. #843 is psyching himself up to beat his brother . . . meanwhile, #942 is completely oblivious and appears to be checking out a mosquito bite on his wrist.

Here they are sporting the obligatory "Smile For The Camera" pic.

The whole gang showing their medals.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

First Ear Infection

My poor baby has his first ear infection at just 7 weeks old.

He is a Langan. His older brother also got his first ear infection at 7 weeks. And as previously mentioned, 3 of my older children have had multiple sets of tubes.

Here we go again . . . with the tubes, I mean.

My baby failed his hearing test (twice) on his left ear while still in the hospital after birth. They told me he had narrow ear canals (sounds like tubes) and said he probably had fluid behind his ear drum, causing him to fail the test. He has failed the test 2 more times. So he has an appointment at CHOP to determine whether or not he can hear. I do believe he can, just based on observation. But still, a more specific test is needed.

In the meantime, he caught a little cold last week. It was mostly on his chest and didn't last long. But apparently the fluid in his left ear became infected as a result.

But he has been making a weird sucking noise when nursing the past day or so. And then last night he woke up 2 hours after going to bed (normally he sleeps for 4-6 hours before waking). And then I couldn't get him back to sleep unless I held him upright and he was pounding his little fists against his ears. I started thinking that perhaps he had an ear infection. So I held the little guy but kept falling asleep myself and was afraid he'd fall out of my arms (I was in the middle of a king-sized bed so he wouldn't have fallen, but would have rolled out of my arms, but still, I did not want that to happen.) As a result, I would hold him for as long as I could (45 min to an hour) and then put him in the swing (he can sleep upright in the swing) for an hour or so while I slept. When he would wake crying, I'd go back to holding him. And then when he woke this morning he had a fever.

I called the doctor. (I love my pediatrician's office. You can call-in between 8-9AM every single day of the year. They will always see a sick child, even on Christmas!) Of course they wanted to see him because a fever in such a young baby is always a concern. I was praying it was his ears because if not, he was going to be sent to the ER for bloodwork and a spinal tap. Even though the exam resulted in confirming an ear infection, the doctor said that he could either prescribe an antibiotic OR send him to the ER for further testing. But given our family history of ear infections and given that this is my 5th baby, he opted to prescribe the antibiotics and send us home. He said to take the baby to the ER later today/tonight if he does not respond to the medicine or if his fever spikes again. I'm so glad he was willing to go with the less-aggressive treatment option. It would have pained me to watch him go through a spinal tap only to confirm an ear infection.

I predict he'll have tubes by Christmas.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

The Trees Have Twigs

My children had their annual pediatrician (well visits) a couple weeks ago and it was discovered that my younger daughter needed glasses. (My oldest daughter already wears them for reading.) Apparently her vision is terrible. When I took her to the eye doctor, the doctor put the lines of text up on the wall and asked her to read the smallest line that she could see. She said, "I can't read any of them." So the doctor flips the screen to the next set of text -- much larger this time -- and again asks her to read the smallest line and again she says that she cannot read any of them. At this point I am feeling badly that the child is next-to-blind and am starting to wonder how this may have impacted her academic progress.

So the doctor flips the screen again and all that appears is a GIANT letter E, about 8 x 10 inches and my daughter happily shouts, "I see an E!" So now I am feeling TERRIBLE that she has been unable to see. How did I not know this? I mean I know I've been distracted with a new baby but you would think her teacher would have noticed? Or my daughter would have said something? But then I started to remember that she had an eye test at the pediatrician a year ago and passed with flying colors. And then I remembered that the school nurse also tests the kids each year and she passed that test as well. And I also recalled taking her to the eye doctor in December because she said her vision was blurry (but it was fine.) But I am still feeling bad for not realizing that my daughter's vision was 200/20.

When we got home, she was so excited to see (wearing her glasses of course) the twigs that connect the leaves to the branches of the tree. Yes, her eyesight was THAT poor!

My daughter LOVES her glasses and has spent a lot of time gazing at herself in the mirror. She is also coordinating her outfits around her newest fashion accessory. She bought a matching blue headband and created her own necklace at Beadniks that matches her glasses perfectly. She also took about 35 pictures of herself and her glasses. Then she had her older sister photograph her several times as she modeled. Humility is not one of her strengths.

Thursday, July 9, 2009


By: Guest Blogger

The Philly Phanatic in his go-cart.

The other day we went to the Phillies game!!! It was so fun. The Phillies were playing Cincinnati. At first Cincinnati was winning 2 to 0 then it was 2 to 1 then 2 to 3. The Phillies won!

Me, my dad and my 2 brothers went to the game. My sister, my mom, and the baby stayed home. And Grammy and Grampy stayed home too.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Emma: One Year Later

Emma came to live with us a year ago today. I cannot believe how quickly the year has passed and am astonished at how much she has changed in the past 12 months. First of all, she is FINALLY housebroken . . . it took about 7 LONG months. She did have a small relapse after the baby was born but she seems to be doing fine now. She has also calmed down a LOT. She used to be crazy-hyper and full of energy. She is still full of energy but she is much better at listening and is very gentle now. She is such a good little dog; during our block party, she was out in the alley with us for about 7 hours and never once wandered off and instead chased the kids up/down the alley on their bikes or napped underfoot when tired. People were commenting on how well-behaved she was. She is a dog who loves her peeps. She's also the kind of dog every kid wants: one who lays with you when you're sick; who chases you down the slide at the park; one who climbs into your treehouse with you; or jumps on the trampoline with you. We are so lucky to have such a great little dog.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

So Tired

We had a BUSY day yesterday and we are VERY tired today! We celebrated July 4th with a neighborhood block party out in the alley: food, friends, fun, iTunes and even limbo! What could be better?

Friday, July 3, 2009

Hershey Park

By guest blogger

The other day we went to Hershey, PA. I went with my sister and my dad. My sister does not like roller coasters very much. She went on two roller coasters. She went on the Lightning Racer two times and she went on the Wildcat once. After the roller coasters we went on the Wild Mouse. It was FUN!!!!! After that I went on the Claw! It was awesome!!! The Claw is my favorite ride. Then it was lunchtime. We got Subway (eat fresh). After lunch we went on the Wildcat once again! Then we went to the water park. The water was COLD. We didn't do very much in the water park because there was a line for everything: the lazy river, wave pool, kiddie pool, sand water thing and the Waterworks. After playing in the Waterworks me and my dad did surfing on the Waverider. I DID NOT like it at all. After that we went to get Dippin' Dots and then went back to the Waterworks. Then we went on more rides. One was the Sidewinder. I did not like it. Then we had dinner and then rode one more ride then left. On the way home we got ice cream! It was the best day ever!!!!!! :)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Smiley Boy Part II

The baby will be 6 weeks old tomorrow. He's been smiling at me for a while . . . but now he is starting to smile at his siblings and will even smile for the camera once in a while. He's so very sweet and such a good baby. Each morning after he nurses, I put him in the Boppy for some Brother Time -- he lays in the Boppy and his two older brothers give him some loving. They L-O-V-E their Brother Time and look forward to it!

Smiley Boy is also Biggie Boy. He was 10 pounds at his 1 month check-up and he had grown 1.25 inches since he was born. The doctor looked at me and said, "Are you sure this is your baby?!" because all of our kids are on the low end of the growth curve. But it looks like this baby got all the tall genes from both sides of the family.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Smiley Boy : )!!!

By Guest Blogger

Here are some pictures of Smiley Boy!!