Monday, February 28, 2005
Birthday Party + Trip to Urgent Care = One Tiring Weekend
Get yourself comfy; this is a long one.
T turned four on Saturday and he had a good birthday. He wanted “strawberry pancakes” for breakfast, so I made him pancakes, plopped on some strawberry jam and whipped cream and….voila! Strawberry Pancakes. While I was making the pancakes, I could hear R and T waking up Uncle Dave. He and my in-laws came in late Friday night for T’s Saturday party. The boys were waking up Uncle Dave by jumping on him and wrestling with him. The next thing I know, T comes down stairs complaining that he’s having “a really bad birthday.” Evidently, he ended up falling off the futon during the wrestling wake up. (Nope, this isn’t where the Urgent Care visit comes into play…stay tuned.) Luckily, the breakfast helped his day improve a bit, but he still wasn’t all smiles and he would shoot Uncle Dave a look during breakfast. He finally cheered up helping us decorate for the party – balloons and streamers do the trick every time.
The day was a bit busy because R had hockey practice from 1-2 and then the end of season party and free skate with parents from 2-2:30. M, grampa, and U.Dave took him to hockey (and skated during free skate) while gramma, T and I stayed to finish getting ready for the party, which started at 2:30. The party was from 2:30-4:30, so it was just a cake and ice cream party, but I thought I’d have some veggies, cheese and crackers for any parents that stuck around.
We invited six kids to the party – four 4-year olds and two of their siblings (one 11 year old girl that T’s in love with, and one 2 year old boy). All but one were neighbors. One boy, Austin, is a friend of T’s from art class and story time at the library. Everybody showed up and they brought their parents too. I expected each kid to have a parent because the kids are only 4, but I didn’t expect each kid to bring BOTH parents! I guess that everybody liked the idea of a party in this dreary, snowy winter. All in all with family, kids, and parents, we had 22 people in our house for the party.
As the kids arrived, they decorated party hats (aka foam visors) in the kitchen. I bought a bunch of foam stickers – trains, airplanes, trucks, bugs, flowers, stars, balls, and geometric shapes – for the kids to put on their visor. (T wanted to have party hats, but he didn’t want the elastic string around his chin, so we went with the visor idea.) They had a lot of fun with the project. Most kids got so many stickers on their visor that you couldn’t see the color of the visor any more. This was a good activity to do right away, so the kids had something to do while the other kids arrived (an old trick my dad taught me). T’s visor was purple and he decorated it with two trains, a purple flower and a purple dog. R had a variety of sports balls, vehicles and stars on his visor.
Then we headed to the basement for the bulk of the party. (My mom in law cleaned up the visor craft table so that it would be ready for cake and ice cream later on.) M and the boys had worked on the basement to make it look really fun for the party. All of the grown ups commented on how cool it looked; they especially liked the colorful foam squares that M had put down (you know, like they have in preschools for the kids to play on.) We also had the different mini sports games set up – mini basket ball and a thing where you throw the ball in different holes for different points.
The kids played for a bit and then I got them started on the next craft (T loves crafts, so this party had a bunch of them!) It was another foam craft. I ordered some train kits, so the kids glued the train pieces onto the main train to make a train. I glued magnets on the back of the main train pieces the night before so they could put them on their fridges. I was smart and bought a bunch of glue bottles, so that each child had his own.
After the magnet craft, it was time for pin-the-smokestack-on-the-steam-train game. The night before, M drew a train on a poster board and his mom and I painted it. We also painted 8 separate smokestacks. The game worked just like the regular donkey/tail game. T-the-birthday-boy went first and didn’t even make the poster board. His smokestack was on the wall. He took off his bandana, took one look at where his poor smokestack was and began to cry saying, “I didn’t do good at all!” Poor guy! It didn’t help much that the next kid nearly nailed it right on the dot. In the end, I gave away two prizes to the two closest and was about to give the crying birthday boy a prize for being the farthest away, but he said, “no thank you. I don’t want the prize. I didn’t do good.” How mature of him! We then gave him another chance and he got the smokestack on the boiler of the train and felt much better.
Next was piñata time (a train shaped piñata, of course.) T went first and got a few whacks. The next kid did pretty good. Just when it was R’s turn, M tried to move the piñata a bit higher and the whole thing just broke open. The kids and I all just started at the candy and toys on the floor for a couple of beats, until I yelled “go for it, kids!) and they all piled in. Crazy! M felt so bad! But it wasn’t a big deal at all.
We did one final craft – each kid colored a train car for a train puzzle (T got the engine) – and then we headed upstairs for presents and cake. T got a lot of train toys and some cool books. All in all it was a fun party.
After the party, we opened family presents and played with all the new toys. While we were playing in the basement, R got something in his eye. He was looking up to shoot a basketball and started rubbing his eye. Evidently, a piece of dirt or something from the ball fell into his eye. We couldn’t see anything in his eye and it wasn’t tearing up or red at all. I flushed it with water a few times (a technique we use when the kids get soap in their eyes, dubbed “cold eyes” by T) to try to get what ever was in there out. His eye only hurt when he closed it. He did a pretty good job of not rubbing it. I looked in his eye a bunch of times and so did M, but we could never see anything. When he got up at 10:00 because of his eye, I even put a couple of drops of dry-eye Visene to see if that could help. It seemed to help a bit, so I tucked R in bed.
At 12:30, he woke me up, crying that his eye was bugging him too much to sleep. He said that it didn’t hurt, but it bugged him a lot. I sleepily gave him the cold eye treatment and sat with him a bit. No good. I put another drop of two of Visene in – this time that treatment hurt him, poor guy. We hung out on the couch together for awhile until he stopped whimpering and I took him back up to his bed. I went back to my bed, but couldn’t stop thinking about him, so I went up and checked on him. He was asleep (snoring quietly) but his hand would go up and rub his eye every now and then. I stayed with him for a long time, not knowing what to do until I was too tired, so I went back to bed. It was 3:00 am.
In the morning, his eye was watering for the first time. I was actually encouraged by this. I figured that whatever was in there had worked its way down to where his eye realized it was there and was trying to get it out. After a bit, M found a little tiny white thing in his eye that he got out. It was the size of a piece of sand. R said it didn’t hurt as bad now and was ready to go eat breakfast. On the way to hockey, we checked out the Urgent Care in town and saw that it would be opened later in the morning, just in case we needed to go. He was also supposed to have another hockey practice and he wasn’t sure if he wanted to go or not. M and I encouraged him to go – there were only two practices left and he always had so much fun. Anyway, after half way through the practice, R came off the ice with his eye pretty red, a bit swollen, and tearing like crazy.
We drove right to Urgent Care from the hockey rink. We waited an hour with some of the sickest people I’ve ever seen in my life. If there was a way to hold my breath for an hour, I surely would have. M whispered to me, “breathe through your nose” as soon as we sat down. The doctor was as nice as could be and R was as brave as could be. She numbed his eye with some drops and put in a piece of paper that had orange dye on it. It somehow changed to neon green in his eye. Then she turned off the lights and used a black light to see if there were any scratches on his eye. There were! He had about 3 or 4 scratches on his eye. M and I could see them too. It was pretty cool to see. She couldn’t find any foreign objects in his eye, just the scratches. She said it would take a couple of days to heal and gave us a prescription for antibiotics to put in his eye three times a day (she put in one dose while we were there.) She also recommended that we see an ophthalmologist on Monday to confirm that there really wasn’t anything in this eye that shouldn’t be there.
Because his eye was numb, R felt pretty good then and was just tired from his night of fitful sleep (him and me both!) By the time we got home, it was 3:00, so I put him and T down for a nap. Then I crawled in bed for a nap too. Whew! What a weekend.