Tuesday, September 30, 2008

::30 Days:: Day 9

The girls gathered black walnuts from around the yard. When we drive out, I have spotted many walnut trees on the side of the road, with all the fallen walnuts being crushed under the tires of moving vehicles. I don't usually eat these walnuts, but since my girls went through all the trouble, I might as well learn how to work these nuts. Our walnut trees are old and gnarled with dead branches, so they didn't have very many nuts. They may be cut down next year to make way for new growth.

Fooling around with the baby after dinner. I caught Baby's smile on camera! Beef Stir-fry was on the menu tonight.

During the summer, every night after dinner, we all went outside. We dump the days' worth of peelings and coffee grounds into the compost bin in the garden. I'll take down the laundry, the husband takes our leftovers to the "bird table" where the outdoor cats scavenge the meat bits and then whatever is left goes to the birds and the occasional opossum or skunk. Cooler nights have put a stop to the nightly outdoor fun, but the peelings still need to be disposed of and laundry still needs to be taken down. You can see lots of apple peelings here from all the apple-ly foods I have been making.

One of the things I love about hanging clothes to dry outside, is they get folded as I take them off the line. I sort between family members as I go and also sort by how they get put away in the drawers:: I take down the girls' skirts and pants first, then the tops, then lay the dresses on top since they get hung in the closets. Then I do my husbands' clothes, and then mine. Makes putting them away a cinch and I don't mind doing it so much then. I don't mind doing the laundry, but having to fold and put away when I use the dryer is such a chore. Line-drying works so much better for me, the only negative that I can see, is having to get up earlier in the cooler weather for maximum drying time.

Monday, September 29, 2008

::30 Days:: Day 8

Blogger isn't letting me post any pictures, but that's alright, I had another one of those non-stop nursing days. Working at the store yesterday tired us all out and with the exception of the husband going to work, the rest of us had a very lazy day. I wanted to do more, but Baby just wasn't having it. Seemed like every time I put him down, he lasted 5-10 minutes before demanding to be held or fed.

We did manage to make cinnamon apple chips with the dehydrator, though. Peel and slice apples really thin, a mandolin slicer helps here, and after a dip in lemon juice to prevent darkening, dip in a cinnamon and sugar mixture. Lay out on dehydrator and let dry until crisp, it took about 10 hours for mine. These won't last long so make several batches.

Working at the store was a different change of pace, but I couldn't do it everyday. Having to work and then tending to baby and children is too much and I am glad this is only for a few weeks. The drive down is nice, but the gas prices are killing us, too. It costs us about $25 in gas round trip so we always deduct that from our earnings. If we make $100 that day, it's really only $75, plus we had to buy food for the kids to eat so that's another $10 knocked off. Going to pack sandwiches the next time we go in. I'm hoping to make $500 and then spend about $100 on things the kids need, and then it's probably minus $125-150 in gas so we only get to take home about $250, but hey-- it's $250 we didn't have before!

I'll be back with photos for Day 9.

::30 Days:: Day 7

The kid's consignment store is open again, so we are headed to the store to put in some work hours. I won't be working as many hours as I used to, because of the baby and Hubby's new job, but I hope to get at least 50 hours in, so I can shop for a few things the kids will need this winter-- shoes, coats, etc...

There is a sandbox in the playroom at the store for staff kids. Instead of sand, they used dried corn kernels for indoor use. What a good idea! Oldest filled up her dress with the corn and couldn't wait for me to come and see! We had a good laugh over that!

On our way home last night, all the kids are konked out! While mommy and daddy worked hard, they played hard.

"On top of spaghetti, all covered with cheese, I lost my poor meatball, when somebody sneezed..." We stopped at a drive through to get meals for the kids because we knew they'd be asleep by the time we got home, but we waited until we got home to make something to eat for ourselves. Look at that bowl Hubby made for me! Yum!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

::30 Days:: Day 6

Youngest impatiently waiting for breakfast to come out of the oven. The husband went to work this morning so I didn't feel like making a big meal. I made poor man's doughnuts out of those biscuits-in-a-can. Just pop it open, poke a hole in the center of each biscuit and stretch it out some, then dip in cinnamon and sugar and bake as usual. Yummy! Used to make these a lot when we were kids.

Today was one of those days, where I was non-stop breastfeeding the baby. I'd try to get him down but one of the girls would come by just as he starts to fall asleep and lay a big kiss on the top of his head and startle him awake. Or the girls would play a little too loud and a shriek would wake him up. Or one of them would jump on the couch and wake him up. Or they turn up the TV too loud and wake him up. Yeah, one of those days. Plus, it was raining, so I couldn't send them outside to play.

We did manage to get some apples into the dehydrator, though. Oldest helped peel them, dunked them into the lemon juice/water mixture and then dried them and put them onto the trays. They keep asking when the apple chips will be ready and they have a hard time understanding why they won't be ready until tomorrow. They'll see in the morning and we'll turn it into a home school lesson.

Friday, September 26, 2008

::30 Days:: Day 5

The thing about canning and preserving your own foods, is that it is time consuming and you really need to be dedicated to the work. There are no short-cuts when it comes to canning, but in the end, the quality of the food is so worth it. That said, the girls either help me or they go downstairs to the play area. I added the latest batch of applesauce to my canning shelf in the basement. What you see above is everything I have canned this year with maybe 25 jars left from 2007.

This is what I saw after I put up the applesauce and turned to face the play area. Ugh! I just cleaned this not too long ago and they have dumped every single bin onto the floor. Today was spent sorting through toys and we're not even halfway done yet. They even got into some sale items I had put aside and now I have to hunt for them and separate them again. Ugh!

After the husband came home from work this afternoon, I made fresh salsa and chips for our taco salad dinner tonight. You can't compare bagged chips with fresh ones! Too easy to make-- buy corn tortillas, cut into smaller pieces and fry in hot oil, about 15 seconds each side. Drain on paper towels and lightly salt. I make extra for snacking later, the chips keep well for a few days in an air-tight container.

Not one, but TWO surprises in the mail today! The cutest little owl from my blog-friend, Summer and baby outfits for the baby from a dear friend of mine, Ara. Thanks so much, you two! It really made my day! :o)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

::30 Days:: Day 4

The husband waving good-bye as he walks out the door, heading to his new job. *!!!* Yeah, you read that right-- new job! Yay!! Someone finally answered one of his hundreds of job applications, interviewed him and hired him. This is his first official day on the job. We missed him while he was gone, but we know it's for a good thing.

Baby took a nap and the girls played outside in the driveway, carving out roads in the gravel for their own toy cars. I took advantage of the moment and made another 5 quarts of applesauce.

Cereal was on the menu for dinner tonight, along with fresh made apple crisp for dessert. Mmmm!

I taped 'Survivor' because Hubby worked 2-9 tonight and we love watching that show. We must be one of the few people that don't have TIVO, and still have to tape shows the old-fashioned way. Do you see the captions on the TV? "Grab your stuff help pd back to camp". It's rare that the captions are done perfectly and there are always misspellings and grammar errors. Usually pre-recorded TV shows and movies are good, but the news shows are terrible. Because they are live, the captioner is typing as they speak and has to keep up with the speaker, so lots of times there are major typos and sometimes completely wrong words because of accented speakers or garbled speech. That's part of the reason why I don't watch the news-- I don't have the patience to deal with bad captions.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

::30 Days:: Day 3

Today was our weekly visit to the Library. A volunteer reads stories to the kids (there are more kids out of the frame) and afterwards, does art projects. Today's project was paper bag puppets. Check out that great mural!! I love looking at it.

More applesauce making when we got home. I checked out "27 Dresses" from the library and watched it as I peeled and cored the apples. I lost the interest of the girls and did most of the work myself.

Too busy making applesauce to make a proper dinner, so grilled cheese sandwiches were on the menu tonight, with applesauce for dessert.

Hubby was a big help, trying to soothe and comfort a crying baby so I could finish the last batch of applesauce. Baby has a set of lungs on him! Made another 10 quarts today. I'd like to make at least 20 quarts of applesauce, so will make one more batch which will bring me up to maybe 25. The leftover apples (if any) will be eaten in pies and desserts or dried.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

::30 Days:: Day 2

First things first, the laundry! Gotta get up earlier to line dry clothes because it gets darker earlier now. And yes, that is a ladder holding up one of the lines-- we haven't gotten around to getting another support rigged up yet and we are making do. Holds the bucket of clothespins nicely, though.

Hubby made breakfast this morning-- our favorite! Ham, egg and cheese sandwiches with tator tots and milk. Yes, I eat 2 sandwiches-- gotta make that milk for baby!

The day was spent peeling, coring, cooking and making applesauce. Lucky for me, baby took a long nap and I was able to do most of this without nursing him at the same time!

Results of the day-- 8 quarts and 1 pint of applesauce. I barely made a dent in the 2 bushels of apples we bought. Making more applesauce tomorrow!

Monday, September 22, 2008

::30 Days:: Day 1

The day started with happy face pancakes for the girls...

Then a trip to the local orchard, where unfortunately, we weren't allowed to pick our own apples, but you could buy apples by the bushel-full. 2 bushels of apples came home with us...

Then I went to a friend's place to pick up the older 2 girls that went with daddy to cut logs for firewood. She planted waterlilies in the pond and the flowers are starting to bloom! Pretty!

The day ended with Hubby stacking the cut logs out back, ready to be split into firewood.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Busy Foggy Week

I am under attack by the mother of all head colds. I don't usually get sinus infections, but I must be getting old-- I did celebrate my 35th birthday on Tuesday, after all. Despite being sick, we still managed to use up the last of the peaches on our peach tree and our total count is 27 1/2 pints of peach jam. They are small peaches, the size of large walnuts, and it takes many peaches to make enough peach pulp for each batch of jam.

A work in progress:: peaches cooling in ice water after a dip in boiling water; skins and seeds in the compost bowl (along with the remains of a jelly sandwich); freshly skinned and seeded peaches awaiting further instructions.

My birthday came and went like any other day. I shared a party last Saturday with my Father in Law, and there was cake and ice cream and presents. On the actual day, I made myself a carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. Hubby made ham, egg and cheese sandwiches for breakfast and then the girls and I worked on the peaches for most of the day. By evening, I could tell I was headed into sick-land. I've spent the rest of the week walking around in a fog-- stuffy nose, crusty nostrils, pounding headaches, scratchy throat, and painful swallows leaving a trail of snotty tissues every where I go.

I am feeling a bit better now, thank you, and I can breathe with my mouth closed again. The tissues are swept up and discarded and now I've got my sights set on apple picking this weekend. I have plans, people! I have plans to make apple sauce, apple pie filling, apple jelly and apple butter and whatever else you can make with apples!

Next Monday, I'll be doing a photo series:: 30 Days :: A picture a day that sums up my life.. Should be fun!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Grandma's Beauty Parlor

We had a nice couple of days away, spending time with family and catching up on all the family news. We spent the night at my husband's parent's home and slept in his old bedroom, while the girls slept on an air mattress in the living room. The girls giggled and laughed and bounced on the mattress and it took a good while to settle them down.

My In-laws are the 'early-to-bed' type of people, and by 9 o'clock, they were ready for bed. We don't usually go to sleep until after midnight so this was going to be a quiet night for us. After getting the girls to sleep, we talked and read in our room. Lights out at 10 and I think the baby knew we weren't in our own bed, because he tossed and turned all night. I got very little sleep and by 6:30, I had had enough. I ended up taking a nap after breakfast and felt much better afterwards.

Before we all went to bed, Grandma did her usual bedtime routine and the girls became her shadow. They adore her and she entertains them and amuses them and lets them play with her stuff and they are really quite fun to watch in action. Grandma puts her hair in rollers and pin curls before bed, and the girls wanted in on the fun, too!

Grandma putting rollers on Middle.

My 3 beauties! Middle, Oldest and Youngest.

Middle preening herself in Grandma's magic mirror.

Oldest hamming it up!

Youngest looking ever so lovely.

Grandaddy then chased the girls around with shaving cream on his face and they squealed in delight as they ran away from him.

We went to go and visit my husband's Great Aunt M at the assisted living place. Before we went, we called first to let her know we were on our way there. We followed my In-law's car since we didn't know where she was at and they go and see her every week. When we got there, my MIL could hear "help help" through the door and thank goodness they had a key! We all rushed in to find Aunt M on the floor. She had fallen and couldn't get up. She had an emergency bracelet on her wrist to push in case something like this happens, but she fell on that hand and it was trapped under her body and she couldn't get her hand free. She was on the floor for about 45 minutes by the time we got there. 911 was called and she was taken to the Hospital and it was discovered she broke her pelvis in 2 places.

I am glad we went when we did, who knows how long she would have laid there if we didn't come by at that moment. Please, send good thoughts and prayers her way for a speedy recovery!

We were happy to come home after being away and the events with the doctor and CPS faded away while we were gone. We feel refreshed and energized and ready to take on anything that comes our way. I don't think we will "run away" any time soon and just deal with things as they come. Besides that, we have way too much stuff and I don't want to pack it all!! :o) This house fits us, and after several searches on the Internet for homes, we can't find a single one that equals this one. So for now, we'll stay and we won't let this thing get us down.

You aren't rid of us yet! :o)

Friday, September 12, 2008


We are headed out of town this weekend and having a sleepover at the grandparent's house. The girls are so excited and have been talking about it for days.

Part of me looks forward to getting out of town, what with everything that has been happening, and another part of me just wants to stay home and avoid the long drive. This will be the baby's first long trip and I hope he will do well. If we're lucky, he'll nap most of the way and I can breastfeed him as soon as we get to our destination.

While we are away, we plan to make the most of our trip. The last time we were out that way, was back in the Spring because I was pregnant and we stayed close to home. We are long overdue for a visit and we are going to make several stops to see different people and places while we're up there. Low funds + high gas prices = killing several birds with one stone.

Living where we do, in the mountains, it's hard to pull ourselves away and go into the "city". It's so peaceful here, with the winding roads and gorgeous views of pastures, valleys and mountains. Hardly any traffic and no stoplights for miles and miles. Going into the city makes me clench my fists and grind my teeth together, with all the traffic and crazy drivers and rush, rush, rush! We always look forward to coming home again after a visit to the city and this is what I am counting on-- looking forward to coming home after feeling like I wanted to move away.

If I can come back and be happy to be home again after a few days, despite what has been going on with CPS and the doctors, then I'll stick around and tough it out. But if we come home and dread the upcoming week and beyond, then we may have to do some serious talking about what the future holds for us. Wait and see...

Have a good weekend and I'll be back in a few days.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Staying Busy

First, a big Thank You for all of your supportive comments on my previous post. It is reassuring to know that I have people on my side, even those that have never met me and know me only through my blog. We did as some of you suggested, and called CPS asking for a copy of the report. We were told we will get copies when the case is closed but not while it is ongoing. We also made an appointment with a new, local doctor and we are keeping in touch with the CPS worker as well.

Jessica!! Of course I remember you! How could I forget? It's great hearing from you and I hope we can keep in touch now that you've found my blog!

In an attempt to keep my mind off of what has been happening with CPS and the doctor, I spent all day Tuesday making and then canning 15 pints of peach jam.

The whole family pitched in to help, from picking the peaches off our peach tree, to peeling the skins off (who knew the girls' nimble little fingers could peel them so much faster than I ever could!), taking out the seed and then running them in the meat grinder. A quick tip for you: for mincing fruits and veggies, the meat grinder does a great job of it, saving me loads of time chopping it myself!

I planned to make more today, but am out of pectin, so will put it off until tomorrow.

Wednesday, we had a morning appointment with a local doctor for the baby. He was ok, telling us stuff we already knew-- like how often to feed a baby and don't let baby sleep, wake baby to feed him, etc.. I wanted to say "Hello?! This is #4 for me?! I know that stuff already" but I bit my tongue and nodded along. Since the appointment with idiot doctor last week, the baby gained another 8 ounces. I felt victorious in knowing that what we've been saying all along is turning out to be true-- the baby is a slow gainer and between 2 and 3 months, the weight starts to come on faster. But it still doesn't erase what has happened with CPS and idiot doctor.

This new doctor wants us to come back next week for a weigh-in and he went on and on about how a baby is supposed to gain an ounce a day and that equals approximately 2 pounds a month and then showed us the growth and weight chart and where our baby is on it and I realized that this doctor is the same as the other doctor-- he isn't listening to us when we say that our babies are slow gainers. When we told him we breastfed all our kids until they were over 18 months (except #3 who weaned herself off at 9 months) he seemed surprised. When we told him I was not on birth control because I didn't believe in nursing while on the pill, he actually looked at me funny.

I feel like I am in a position I don't want to be in-- We HAVE to go to the doctor because if we don't, CPS will be back for another visit. I'd much rather stay home and then go to the health department when necessary, but at this point, we can't. It's too late, CPS is involved now and the only way to get them off our backs is to continue to see the doctor and show that the baby is gaining weight.
* * * * *

After coming home from the doctor's office, the husband decided to get out the chainsaw and do some trimming of the trees. We have a few dead trees that need to be cut down and chopped for fire wood.

Here's me, cutting the trunk of a tree *I* cut down!! What a rush that is, to cut a tree and see it fall! After about 10 minutes, I passed the chainsaw back to Hubby, my hand can't take the vibration of it for very long-- I had surgery once for carpal tunnel and tendinitis on my right hand.

Here's Hubby, trimming the branches off the tree I cut down.

And the girls wanted to help, so they pulled all the branches out of the way after daddy cuts them off. See Youngest covering her ears? "That chainsaw is too loud!!"

It's always fun when we can do things together as a family-- be it making jam or cutting wood. Whatever happens with the doctors and CPS, I know that we will be alright. We know that our son is fine and we just have to keep going to prove it. We are a loving family and I am totally blessed to have them in my life.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Meddling People

Just as I feared, it happened this morning-- a visit from Child Protective Services.

The morning began as it always does, our usual doings as we wake up and start the day. I was sitting in the living room nursing the baby and the girls were playing with their Barbies when Hubby came in and told me there was a guy here from Child Protective Services (CPS), here to see the baby, on a report from the doctor.

The pediatrician called the Department of Health on us, because we refused to take the baby to the hospital to be tested and because we didn't follow his orders of feeding the baby formula 7 times a day.

The worker from CPS and my husband and I sat down at the dining table and we began to talk. He asked us about the baby and we explained what happened at the doctor's office. I told how he turned his back on me when he knew I was deaf and the worker made a face and said that was rude. We said that we tried to explain the history of our other children and the doctor didn't want to listen and when he wanted to take the baby to the hospital for testing, he didn't say for what. I explained that I didn't feel comfortable with the pediatrician and that we were going to check out 3 other doctors here in town.

We also told the worker about the ob/gyn doctor that broke my water without my permission and he was shocked at what we said. Medicaid has been both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because we can relax a little knowing that should one of our children get hurt, they will be covered and we don't go into debt paying doctor bills. A curse because it seems to bring out the worst doctors or at least bring out the worst in doctors. I only get to pick doctors that accept medicaid and even then, it seems like they look at you like you are insignificant or are taking advantage of the system and getting free health care or welfare or anything. That's what it seems like to me.

While we were talking to the CPS worker, my eye started to see the mess in my home, the toys scattered here and there, the pile of papers on the countertop that seems to be the catch-all for all papers that enter through our doors. The crumbs on the table and floor from last nights' dinner, the dishes in the sink and on the counter that have not yet been washed... I apologized for the mess, trying to say that with a baby and 3 kids, well, kind of hard to keep up. He shook his head and said "You should see my house". I still can't help but think he might have said that but wrote something else in his file.

I started to cry a little and I was upset at what was going on. In my house, was a CPS worker, checking up on my baby. All the worse-case scenarios started running through my head. The worker assured us that there would probably be no more visits and this is the last we hear from him, provided we contact them after we make an appointment with another doctor and let them know how it went. He said he has seen far worse homes with babies left in the cribs and no care or attention to them. After talking with us for about 40 minutes, he left.

The husband and I are furious, upset, angry, frustrated, disappointed... I never imagined that there would be a CPS worker in my own home inquiring me about my own children. Now our names are in the system and on file and should anything ever pop up, a red flag will come up because some idiot doctor reported us to CPS for neglect. It's enough to make me want to pack up our stuff, sell the house and move to somewhere new and begin fresh.

It really makes my husband and I both angry when we take our jobs as parents seriously and do the best we can to provide for them, with what little we have, and then some idiot out there has to go and make things harder for us. I don't care if the CPS worker says "this will probably be the last time you hear from us", it doesn't matter, the fact is, we are now a name on their list of reported parents. My husband wonders about calling a lawyer to see what can be done, and all I can think is to go away from here.

Life is hard sometimes and it is made harder when meddling doctors call CPS on us. I now feel like I need to super clean my house and keep it that way at all times, in case there is another surprise visit from CPS. I don't need that hanging on my head. Excuse me while I go outside and scream my head off.

Friday, September 5, 2008

After-thoughts on 'Bad Doctor'

Thanks to all for your positive comments on my previous post. We called a breast-feeding advocate friend of mine and she recommended 3 family doctors. We will be visiting all three at one time or another and get a feel for them, before we make a decision for who we will stick with. They are all local doctors, too, so we would not have to drive an hour into the bigger town in Virginia.

I look in my son's face and I see a beautiful baby boy. He has the most beautiful smile and it really disappoints me, for the second time, the pediatrician wrote "failure to thrive" on paper. For a doctor that has been in the business for more than 30 years, you would think that he would be aware that not all babies are alike. My brother-in-law argued that maybe in all his years of doctoring, he is concerned about this one baby that doesn't look like the others. I don't agree.

Like some of you that have commented, I have seen a wide range of babies. Extremely chubby babies, tiny really-not-a-preemie-babies, and average size babies. Small babies that came from two large people, and giant babies from two petite people. No two are the same, even twin babies.

Before I had my Oldest, I planned on breast-feeding because it seemed the natural thing to do and I have always been the type to march to my own drummer, the odd one out. I had lots of negative reactions from people who tried to push formula on me and the baby. Even the hospitals and doctor's offices bombard you with free cans of formulas and coupons and free diaper bags filled with formula samples of all kinds.

Oldest had to stay in the NICU for a week because of a supposed infection and they had to let the antibiotics run their course before releasing her. I requested that they do not give her formula or a pacifier and was upset when I found out they did both.

With the negative reaction from people, I had started to resign myself to using formula while out in public and nursing at home, until I bumped into an acquaintance of mine who asked me if I was breast-feeding. I told her what I was doing and she set me straight, bless her heart! She told me that if her baby was hungry, she was going to feed him right then and there. Who cares who is watching. You eat a candy bar anywhere, so feed the baby anywhere. Those were just the words I needed to hear and I started to nurse any where and every where. Instead of feeling apologetic to people who were making faces, I started to chuckle at their reactions. I started to get a kick out of seeing their faces change when they realized just what I was doing. I became skilled at nursing while shopping, cooking, and typing on the computer.

I have no doubts about breast feeding and I know it is the most precious thing I can do for my children. I know that some people don't want to, or cannot, and I respect their decision. For me, I will not stop until my son weans himself off me, and I hope that won't happen until he is at least 2 years old.

I will not let one bad doctor sway our decisions for what we do with our children. I must admit, though, I get a little nervous when I think about the power that the doctor has-- will he call social services and report us as bad parents? Can he do that? Can social services take my kids away? I try not to worry about it but it sure makes me think on how different every child was/is. How each birth and the time period afterwards is never the same for each kid.

Your words of encouragement mean so much to me and my husband and I sincerely thank you for them. It's good to know there are others out there that think like us and we aren't the crazy ones.

***Did you know that the U.S. has a high mortality death rate for babies? More than 7,000 babies die a year here compared to other countries, even third-world countries. With my recent experience with both the ob-gyn and the pediatrician, I can believe it.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Bad Doctor

I must be a glutton for punishment. I should have listened to my gut and told Hubby to cancel the appointment when the secretary called to confirm.

We went back to the pediatrician, the one that made me feel like a bad mother, because we have not yet found a replacement. I weighed my son myself, and saw that he had gained 8 ounces since the last appointment, so I had hoped that the doctor would have been satisfied with that. He was not.

My son has grown an inch and gained 8 ounces and while he is still on the small side, he looks good! He is starting to take notice of his surroundings and he scoots when he is on his tummy. He rolls from back to front and front to back and he has started to grab things, especially my hair and necklace. He has the most beautiful smile with a dimple on his left cheek. We supplement his diet with one bottle of formula a day, usually when I am busy in the kitchen and no amount of comfort from daddy will quiet him. I like to think of it as when daddy and son can bond together over a drink!

At the doctor's office today, he was quite upset when we told him that we were not giving him the 7 bottles of formula a day like he told us and said we were stunting his brain development. My husband told the doctor that the boy eats and pees and poops just like all our other babies did and his slow gaining was exactly like the first child we had. While examining our son, he found nothing out of the ordinary and told us to go to the hospital to run additional tests as to why he isn't gaining faster. We said no.

I told the doctor that we feel our son is doing just fine and I would never deprive my children of medical attention and care and if I thought he needed to be tested, I would take him, but I don't feel that is necessary. My husband and the doctor did most of the talking, with the doctor turning his back on me. He wants us to come back to see him next week and I told the husband that I will not be taking my son back to him again.

The doctor seemed taken aback when we were firm in our convictions and belief that our son is doing well. I think he is used to people agreeing to whatever he says to do. He started to say this and that, and my husband calmly said that he was not going to argue with him, but that we don't agree with what he said. The doctor's brochure says he believes in breast-feeding, and my husband pointed out that breast is best, isn't it? I even quoted Trapper in a comment she left and told the doctor I was raising a baby not fattening a hog.

We will be making calls tomorrow, to find another pediatrician that will not push the panic button when a baby doesn't follow the "normal" guidelines.

I love my son with all of my heart and soul and I know that he is fine. But when there is a doctor like that, it makes me doubt myself and I start second-guessing what is best for my son. We are going to continue to do what we have been doing all along, and dammit, I will not be made to feel like a terrible mother for doing it. I have raised 3 healthy little girls and I am raising a healthy baby boy, too.

Monday, September 1, 2008

It's a Honey of a Weekend!

It's been a good weekend so far, and it's not even over yet! I'm feeling somewhat better than I did a few days ago, and my funkiness is fading away.

We had a great visit with the husband's parents, as we always do. My mother in law came bearing small gifts for all the children-- a few school supplies for the girls and 2 outfits for the baby. He is still such a small thing, and I was so sure that he would be big like his sisters were, that I got no newborn-sized clothing for him, except for 6 onesies that he has been wearing for the past 2 months. Everything else is just too big for him! So I am tickled to have 2 new outfits that he will be able to wear, and it'll be funny if now he has a growth spurt and cannot wear them!

Reading through the local paper, I spotted an ad for local honey for sale. I asked Hubby to call and sure enough, it was the same man (he reminds me of Fred Gywnne from the Munsters) we bought our honey from last year. We went over today and bought another quart of honey for $8. I don't know what the going rate for honey is, but I know it's cheaper than the stores. We like honey but we are not big honey eaters, and we are just about finished with the quart we bought last year.

I've been busy in the kitchen these past couple of days. I made and canned another 4 pints of pear butter, baked a chocolate cake for my Aunt for tomorrow, made grilled ribs, and baking peachy muffins as I type. The smell is driving me nutty and I just might have to sample one-- quality control, you know! I am going to give a dozen to my Aunt for her birthday and making extra for everyone else to snack on.

Tuesday, I will take all those ripe roma tomatoes that have been sitting on my counter and try my hand at making ketchup. I had originally planned to make spaghetti sauce, but I like to use whole tomatoes for that, so I'm switching to ketchup. Once I make the ketchup, I'll take some of that and use it to make steak sauce! I'll let you know how that turned out!

Sorry for no pictures, blogger is not letting me post any. I'll be back Tuesday!