Saturday, October 31, 2009


Happy Halloween from Katharine the good witch and our littlest tiger!!

Friday, October 30, 2009

ECDC Halloween Parade

Here is the Sunflower class moments before the ECDC parade!

Craft Project at ECDC

Kate (Leila's mom) and I went into the classroom on Thursday to do a craft project with the kids! We made Frankenstein noisemakers that the kids carried in the Halloween parade on Friday! We had a great time and this pictures shows KK's version of Frankenstein (3 eyes - the mad scientist probably should have thought of this!).

Carving the pumpkin

The eye - the final chapter (I hope)

Well, the eye thing turned out to be more serious than I thought. It ends up the cellulitis did not respond to the shot of antiobiotics so when we returned to the doctor, he said we had to be admitted to the hospital. So, Saturday afternoon we went off to the hospital where we ended up staying until Tuesday evening.

Matty was a real trooper and an angel given all he went through. He was not at all keen on having the medical professionals use any kind of device on him.

  • Stethoscope -- OK
  • Temperature under the armpit -- OK
  • Rectal temperature -- not great
  • Blood pressure cuff -- bad
  • Inserting IV port (3 different times!) -- screaming like possessed by the devil bad
You follow my drift here. Matty really wanted to be with his momma during this time and we got a lot of bonding time over the 4 days. He would sleep in his little "jail" crib at night but would only nap in my arms. They had a couch I could sleep on but I had to sleep lightly so I could get up every time a tech wanted to check his blood pressure in the middle of the night to let them know I thought sleep was more important than an inaccurate blood pressure reading because he is screaming his head off every time you take it. Seemed like the obvious to me and by the last night it seemed they had it down.

Matthew had to receive his antiobiotics through IV which was the main reason we were there -- Rosecpherin every 24 hours (over half hour period) and Vancomyacin every 6 hours (over a 2 hour period). When we first checked in they were doing the Vancomyacin over a 1 hour period but Matthew got "red man syndrome" which is a side effect of it being such a strong medicine that his scalp and eyebrows turned all bright pink when he got it. So, we had to stretch it out over a two hour period. Apparently, "red man syndrome" is pretty rare and the pediatrician actually chuckled when she heard because she said ordinarily doctors usually only hear of that on med school tests. Only my Matty!

On his last day in the hospital they "probed" his tear duct because they were pretty sure that a blocked tear duct was a contributing factor to all this. The eye doctor said the procedure was a success and she did feel resistance and a "pop" when they did it that she felt indicated that there was a membrane from birth that had never resolved itself and opened up. (Apparently, the procedure is the equivalent of taking a stick pin and send it down the tear duct where it would normally drain into the nasal passage). This was the only time that Matthew was not with a family member and when he woke up in recovery, he wanted his Momma. He really is such a sweet boy!!

So, we followed up today with the pediatrician and she feels that the infection is gone but there is a bit of residual redness around the eye which is normal given the degree of inflammation he had. However, all the antiobiotics have given him diarrhea so he now has a raging diaper rash with likely yeast infection. We added a prescription diaper cream to his regimen and some probiotics to really load him up on that "good bacteria". And in two weeks we will follow up with they eye doctor to make sure everything looks as it should.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Hah! Mom beats doctor.

Well, not exactly but my mom instincts were telling me something still wasn't right with Matty. So, after a brief discussion with our nurse, we were headed back to see our regular doctor at 12:15. As soon as nurse Stephanie saw us (and Matty's swollen up eye), she said she was glad we came back in to today!

Dr. Goedecke had a look and determined that he now has cellulitis (an infection that has been known to land kids in the hospital!). Fortunately for Matty, his case is not that serious. It seems that Matty probably started with a clogged tear duct, which made him more vulnerable to conjuctivitis, he got conjunctivitis (which starts in that area where you pull down your lower eye) but instead of moving to the eyeball as conjuctivities normally does (hence the term pink eye) the infection moved downward into the tissue and became cellulitis. So, we suspended the eye drops (which Matty hated because they burn) and went for some more serious antibiotics. We started with a shot of antiobiotics (unfortunately, a slow painful shot); which not only brought Matty to tears but had him crying "oweee". Poor bub! And then it is back to the doctor tomorrow for another check. If it seems the shot is working, we will begin a 14 day course of oral antibiotics (Augmenten). If it seems the shot didn't have much impact, then we get another shot, and then 14 days of antibiotics. Whew! This kid is seriously either going to go to med school when he grows up or really, really hate doctors! Hopefully, not the latter.

And I just have to conclude by saying how much we love, love, love our pediatrician and her nurse - they are truly awesome!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Ugh - My poor boy

The doc who was covering the sick appointments today says that the little bubba has pink eye. Ugh. I'm sure he knows more about the field of medicine than me but this is a case of pink eye like I have never seen before. The eyeball itself just doesn't seem that red to me but his eye sure is swollen. "Oweee" is what Matty has to say about it. He even had a fever tonight (101.4). This sweet boy of mine sure does know how to stress me out.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Girls just wanna have fun!

Today, after we had safely deposited Matty at daycare, KK and I decided to have some fun! So, we went to KK's first movie ever in a movie theatre! We choose, "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs" and it was in 3-D (hence, the glasses). I think she looks like a mini-Elvis Costello. KK initially took a seat fairly near the front and was a tad overwhelmed once the film actually started. Fortunately, we were the only ones who chose to see "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs" at noon on a Tuesday so we had our pick and moved farther back. I think she enjoyed it for the most part, although parts were scary to her and the volume was unbelievably loud. She said she is up to another one with no scary parts.

After the movie we made a brief stop at the playground to get some fresh air. KK was all over the place showing me a lot more of that bravado she is developing. She is photographed here climbing up this ladder type thing on her way to hit another slide! The slides seems to be her favorite right now. She had a blast and you would never know she had just been through the dreaded H1N1 flu! We had a great day!

Most recent doctor's visit

Today was Matty's follow-up with the pulmonologist and there isn't anything much to report. Good news on the sweat test, a negative. And, basically, they just want us to stay the course on everything else: Prevacid once a day, Flovent twice a day, Zyrtec once a day, and Xoponex as needed.

They did not recommend seeing an allergist yet. Apparently, kids under two don't technically have allergies. And, I guess allergy testing can be unpleasant and they don't feel like too much will change in terms of the course of treatment.

Friday, October 09, 2009

The results from the doctor

Life is rarely a simple case of black or white in which something is or it isn't. Our trip to the doctor today is just such an example. Let me explain. I have been hypersensitive to the H1N1 flu because of Matty, his asthma putting him at much greater risk for complications should he catch it. And now it is coming to light that H1N1 is posing serious risks to pregnant women. No, I'm not pregnant but a close friend and co-worker is; she sees KK almost daily at the office and usually lets KK sit next to her on our bus ride home. KK had seen her on Wednesday afternoon and they had indeed sat next to each other on the bus. So, for these two reasons, I was more cautious about calling the doctor than I might have been otherwise.

As it turns out, the doctor feels that Katharine has the flu, the symptoms were clear. And she said in most cases doctors aren't even bothering to test, just assuming it is the flu and treating. But, like I said life is often not simple and after explaining to her my two concerns, the doctor felt like she should do the test. So, swab up the nose (KK did not enjoy) and 10 minutes later we find out... the test is negative. So, she doesn't have the flu? Well, not so simple. This test is only 60-70% accurate, so the chances of a false negative are high. The doctor felt this was most likely a false negative and we should proceed as if we have the flu, the dreaded one. So, KK is on Tamiflu 2x a day for 5 days (treatment), and Matty to go on it 1x a day for 10 days (preventive). As we were leaving, I saw the doctor in the hall and she said, "here's the thing. I just looked and we have a positive test... another child from ECDC and I believe this child is in KK's class." More evidence to assume we got a false negative, definitely proceed as if this is H1N1.

The upsides are that KK really doesn't seemed to badly off for having the most feared illness of the season; Matty hasn't caught it yet (nor have we, nor has pregnant friend); and it seems that there is some residual protection from taking the Tamiflu that can last up to 4 weeks (which should hold us over until we can get the kids vaccinated). Also, Tamiflu is supposed to start working quickly so hopefully KK will be feeling better soon and Matthew will be getting some protection soon!

Off to the doctor

Looks like it could be the flu... you know, the dreaded one. I will post more details once we have been to see the doctor.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Sick kiddo

Well now its KK's turn for sickness. They called from ECDC today right before lunch to say she had a fever of 101.6. I picked her up and she was a little bit pitiful. Teary, hoarse, and hot. So, we came home and she spent the afternoon in bed watching movies on my computer (but still no nap). A dose of Tylenol seemed to help bring the fever down to about 100. After nap time she got up and seemed to be doing OK, had a little dinner and a bath. Then, after the bath she said she was cold and just sort of fell apart. I wrapped her in a blanket and popped her in bed and she fell fast asleep. She just woke up and it seems the fever is back up to 101.7. So, more Tylenol and a little drink of water and she was back to sleep. We'll see how she is after a good night's sleep.

Cystic Fibrosis Test - The Sweat Test

This morning was Matty's "sweat test" to rule out Cystic Fibrosis. I had no idea what to expect and how in the world they would get the sweat out of him. As it turns out, it is a pretty interesting process (according to me, Matty thought it sucked). It went something like this, they attach something similar to a car battery to his right arm (between his elbow and his wrist). It has negative and positive which are labeled with red and black just like a car battery. They put some gel disks on electrode-type things that were then attached to his arm with velcro straps. The gel disks were some kind of substance that had to be kept refrigerated and would help to distribute the heat and keep the temperature consistent (to further insure he didn't get burned). The battery process lasted for 5 minutes to heat up just that portion of his arm and activate his sweat glands. Then they attached another device to the spot where the red electrode-type thing was and attached that with another velcro strap. This thing looked like a watch but instead of a watch face had a spiral, maze-like area. As soon as they attached this device a little bit of blue began to weave out from the center through the spiral maze. This is apparently a good sign. So they taped the watch like device to his arm with what looked like green ace bandage and then it was out to wait in the waiting room for 30 minutes. Apparently, the trick of it all is if he will sweat enough and if he does, to insure it lands in the collector by not allowing Matty to move the device at all. Thank goodness for a fish tank in the waiting room which kept him interested for almost 15 minutes. Then there was a painting with some sheep (the ba-baing bought us another 2 minutes). A tour around the waiting room, including reading of bulletin boards bought us another 4 minutes. 3 minutes of watching Dora and a sip from our sippy cup got us to 24 minutes when the tech came to let us know we had 6 minutes to go. Another spin around the waiting room and back to the finish tank and we managed to kill 30 minutes with no damage to the bandaid! So, back to the tech's room for removal of the bandage and determination if the test was successful. Phew, the little blue line went far enough to warrant a success!

We won't know the results of the test until we visit the pulmonologist next Tuesday. However, the doctor did make it clear that this was to rule out Cystic Fibrosis. And the tech said, while he didn't know the results, he didn't think Matty had it. He said he had seen enough kids come and go for this test and Matty just looked too healthy in comparison to the kids he saw come back positive. So, I am still on the course of not worrying until I'm given something to worry about! more to follow next Tuesday.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Best Playdate ever!

This past Saturday we went on the funnest outing!! I organized an outing for ECDC families to go out for a two hour boat ride with Anton Dumars of Tideline tours ( - if you're ever in Charleston, check it out!). You know he has to be good if he didn't even hesitate before agreeing to take out a boat full of 3 year olds. We had enough enthusiasm to fill two boats and the word on the street is that everyone had a good time. I know the Roofs had a blast!
So, we cruised off into the Folly River with 7 kids, 4 brave moms, and our fearless captain. It was a beautiful day and moods seemed to be good! Captain Dumars showed the kids authentic pluff mud and salt water, then proceeded to catch fish and shrimp with a fishing net. The kids could touch and explore - very experiential learning! He also pulled up a crab pot to show the kids some crabs.
Then it was off to Morris Island Lighthouse (approachable only by boat, only at lowish tide) for a little shell seeking. All the kids had a blast with some freedom, some shells, and lots of sand.
On the way back we saw Egrets and lots of dolphins (so cool). It was a well spent two hours!