Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Infant swim

I did it. I enrolled Porter in Infant Swim Survival class. At 8 months old. Heard of it? It's a national program (sometimes controversial) that teaches babies survival classes in the water. You see, when babies or other children fall in water, they tend to sink like a rock straight to the bottom. Or, if they try to swim after falling in a body of water unprepared, they will flail uncontrollably and quickly drown. There are far too many stories out there that begin with "I only turned away for a second" and end with tragedy. Enter, ISR. www.infantswim.com

ISR for infants is not to teach babies how to swim and impress people at the pool like those "your baby can read" programs. This class is designed to teach babies to hold their breath underwater, roll over to orient themselves face-up, and calmly float on their backs while breathing and wait for someone to come and get them out of the water. Needless to say, this kind of training is a bit intense and requires ALOT of dedication. It is 5 days a week, every morning at the same time (7:45 a.m.) for 10 minutes a day, we must keep track of all of his bowel movements, urination, diet and sleep patterns every day, and follow strict guidelines. The instructor is a delightful lady we call Miss Ann who has trained extensively herself to be able to teach this amazing course.

Why did we decide to do this? Well, because it's available in this modern day and age, for one. It's not for everyone - most moms would rightly be terrified to turn their infant over to a stranger at a pool and watch calmly on the sidelines while their baby learns to float. I, however, am not "that mom." For another reason, we live at the pool at Crane Creek in the summer. And this year, not only will we have a crawler, we will have a crazy toddler. However, I am "that mom" who is most likely to lose attention for "just 1 second." This class is also for me. Both Grandma's houses are surrounded by water, pools, lakes, ponds, canals, birdbaths, you name it. More bodies of water than my ADD allows with 2 small children. While it will not make him "drownproof," it will dramatically increase the odds that if he falls in a body of water, he will be able to survive.

Hopefully, in 6-8 weeks, he will have learned to fall in the water and float. Graduation is complete when he can not only do this in the water in his cute little bathing suit, but when he demonstrates it with the instructor in full summer and winter clothes - including coat, hat and boots. I'll keep you posted!!

Thursday, March 17, 2011


For quite a few years now, I have been plagued with chronic sinus infections. I get them in the spring, I get them in the fall and I get them even worse since I've gotten older. About 3 years ago, my doctor was finally tired of prescribing antibiotics and referred me to an ear, nose and throat specialist who could find out what the problem really was. One cat scan later, we found a severely deviated septum and some other gross stuff going on. Good news - it could be fixed forever with an outpatient surgery. Bad news - I had just found out I was pregnant with Sloane. He said to come see him again after I had all of my kids and was finished nursing. Literally the week I finished with Porter, I called. I was ready.

We scheduled the surgery, lined up for childcare for awhile with my mom and dad, and in I went. It was a fairly lengthy surgery. We decided to go for the whole gusto while we were up there and not only straighten out the septum, but widen up nasal passages and sinus passages and remove a turbinate which had grown into the deviation. The whole enchilada, if you will.

What was supposed to be a 2.5 hour procedure ended up being 4. Thankfully, he took his time and once he got up there, found out things were worse than he thought. He corrected them nicely, stitched me back up and I woke up in a recovery room none the wiser of the brutality that my nose had just gone through. In the beginning, I specifically asked the kind doctor that he spare me the gory details of what it was he was going to do or the aspects of what to expect for recovery, lest I talk myself out a much-needed procedure. (I found out EXACTLY what he did a couple of weeks after..... Thank you, Youtube. I am now scarred from those images burning into my mind. It was NOT a delicate procedure as I had naively imagined.)

My wonderful husband was such a rockstar. He set up our recliner in our living room in front of the TV and for a full week, he would come home after working all day and take care of both kids and a patient. Recovery was a bit worse than I thought, but with the help of alot of pain meds and my awesome friends who came by to visit and bring me things, I got through it.

I am still recovering. The doctor has said it could be 6 months before I'm back to normal and maybe even longer. Unfortunately, both children have taken a pretty good shot at my nose, reinjuring it twice now. I'm hoping there's not any new damage because of this, but in the meantime, I can breathe like I have never breathed before and optimistic that when the sagebrush starts blooming, I'll stay healthy and infection-free.

Saturday, March 12, 2011


One of the great things about Phil's job is that they often have meetings at FANTASTIC places. Usually, they are so good that they count as an annual vacation. This year was no exception when we found out it was in the Florida Keys - Duck Key, to be exact - in the middle keys. Sounded pretty good to leave good ol' Idaho in February and be closer to the equator. My Mom and Dad agreed to watch Porter in Eagle for the week and we dropped Sloane off at Camp Dyer in Atlanta with Grandma and Grandpa.

I had never been to the keys and was excited to do all things "keysian." I wanted to drive the highway, see Key West, lay on the beach, etc. so we flew from Atlanta to Miami and rented a convertible (thank you, honey) and drove down.

Unfortunately, Phil had the flu and was miserable for the first part of the trip. He surprised me by booking a trip to go fishing in the shallow waters for tarpon and permit - something I have always wanted to do. He bucked up enough to go and we had a blast! In a flat bottomed boat, 6 miles out (still in 6 feet deep water) we caught tons of spanish mackerel, grunt fish, snapper and all sorts of fun fish I had never seen. When the guide told us that we were going to go shark hunting, I just laughed because I thought he was kidding. He was not. Turns out, the fish we caught early on had a more noble purpose - shark bait... During the last hour of our trip, we did just that and Phil caught a 50 lb Caribbean reef shark. Crazy. What a great time I'll not soon forget and can cross that off my list now.

Another new and fun thing I got to do was paddleboard. Our good friends Vaughn and Katie had rented a couple early on and since Vaughn was going to be in meetings all day, Katie needed a sidekick to kick their butt on a board. I'm always up for getting my butt kicked with Katie so off we went! It was suprisingly stable and we paddled all the way around the key in a waterway without ever falling off or really getting wet at all. Talk about a workout!

Finally, Phil got a little break in the meetings and we were able to drive down to Key West. We hit all the high points like Hemingway's House with the 6 toed cats, Southermost Point, Sloppy Joes and ate sloppy joes, Margaritaville, watched the sunset from the pier and ate oysters with our trusty guides the Olson's, who always know where the goods are. Great vacation, can't wait till the next sales meeting!