How many times was that?

This evening was better than last night. Sylvain didn’t cry as much tonight although he did around lunch time. Adeline took him to the doctor today at 10. With his almost constant fever and the state of his spots she wanted to know if there was anything else we could do. Turns out there is. Holy moly. The next week and a bit is going to be quite the ‘adventure’. I will list for you now Sylvain’s new daily schedule:

MORNING

He wakes up (around 7:15):

  • apply white chalky cream (Tanno Hermal)

Breakfast (7:45):

  • 2.5ml of Xyzall to help with itchiness

Play time

Bath:

  • apply Fucidin medicated cream on the large, raised (the worst) spots
  • apply TH cream
  • apply Talc powder

10am snack:

  • 2ml vitamin

Nap?:

  • when he wakes from morning nap apply Fucidin cream
  • apply TH cream

NOON

Lunch

Play a little

Afternoon nap (or play time if he won’t sleep):

  • at some point between 2 and 4pm another 2ml of vitamin

4 o’clock snack:

  • apply TH cream (TH cream 4 or 5 X/day. Applied at this time before snack if he was upstairs napping)

Play time/Nap (if he didn’t nap earlier):

6pm Bath:

  • apply Fucidin to worst spots
  • apply TH cream to all spots
  • apply Talc powder everywhere

EVENING

Supper:

  • 2.5ml of Xyzall to help with itchiness
BED TIME

When Adeline came home with the list of what we needed to apply/give him and how many times per day it seemed so daunting. After we made this schedule – which has actually already been revised a few times today – it seemed a little less so, but still, I think we’re going to spend more time making him look like a ghost than anything else! It takes about 25 minutes to apply the 2 different creams and the Talc powder. At least that’s what it took me tonight. It will be easier next week when Bastien is in school and it’s just me with Sylvain. Tomorrow I have the two boys and I’m going to have to make sure Bastien is occupied while I’m giving Sylvain his two baths and cream applications.

Today Bastien was actually outside a lot. Two different times this morning, for a while in the late afternoon/evening before supper, and again a bit with Greg and Adeline after supper. We also spent some time in the empty, newly floored Dining and Play rooms. Bastien had a blast running around (on all 4s and on his feet) and Sylvain had just as much fun trying to keep up with him. The little tyke didn’t have a fever tonight and I think he was feeling better overall. He was very vocal tonight after supper. He kept saying DA-DAAAA, DAAA-DAAAAA. They tried to get him to say Papa and Mama, but it just kept coming out dada.

The hardest thing I think for Sylvain right now is that he’s not sleeping as well. All those spots have to be uncomfortable. Adeline brought out some 18 month pjs and the like so that he’s not wearing anything too tight. Some of his 12 month clothes are already on the small side and he’s only 10 months old. I guess really those are just guides. I think after this experience I’m going to be ready for anything!

I’m beginning to truly understand why my Mom is always stressing for me to get my habits in order and be the healthiest I can be before I ever have kids. I’m ashamed to say that I haven’t really cleaned my room and definitely haven’t vacuumed since the month started. Ever since Bastien got the chicken pocks on August 31 I haven’t done anything except some laundry. Well, I’ve washed the laundry, but it is definitely not folded and put away. I’m slothful when it comes to cleaning my room on the best of days – with the boys being home and sick and needing a lot more attention I haven’t felt like doing anything “work-like” when I happen to get a free moment. Who wants to clean at night? That’s when I catch up on emails and write my blog posts, I don’t want to organize, tidy, and clean my room. It’s going to be super important for me to get into better tidying/cleaning habits on a regular basis so that if I ever do have kids I’ll be in the habit and will just do it. Here’s hoping. I’m not helping myself by staying up till 11 or midnight either. And I keep trying to get up for my walks, but even my obnoxious alarm can’t make me get out of bed any earlier than I absolutely have to. I’m a real trooper – first sign of a challenge and I can’t keep up the good habits I’ve started.

To all you mothers out there you had to – or have to – deal with chicken pox or general sickness with multiple  kids or even just one, I admire you. It’s not easy and not everyone has a third set of hands to help out on a daily basis! To mothers everywhere!

                                                                                                                      

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Was that a cow? Oh no, it’s just a crying child.

Sylvain now has the chicken pocks. He’s got more spots and he had a fever today. He didn’t sleep very well so he’s sleeping now and will have to be woken up for supper. Bastien also didn’t take a nap today because he didn’t want to sleep. Humph. So all he’s been doing this evening since his parents got home is cry. Except when he cries because he wants attention me makes this kind of cow groan sound that is really distracting. Greg had gone to the doctor with Sylvain (Greg had the flu) and was trying to explain medication and stuff to Adeline and Bastien was doing his cow-crying.

Today at lunch I noticed that Sylvain’s right eye was really red. Around the outside it had that purple look that you get when you don’t sleep, but in the inside corner it was really red. I put a drop in it before he went down for his nap. I don’t know how much he slept I only know it was just a little. When he got up it wasn’t as red, but there’s a bump now and I think it’s a chicken pock. Poor guy.

Adeline sent Bastien up to bed because he wouldn’t stop making noise/crying and of course this is horrible for us all, but Greg more because he’s sick. She told him not to make noise and not to wake up his brother, but the next thing I hear is high-pitched squealy talk. I run up there and tell him to be quiet and I see that Sylvain is sleeping doubled over. It’s like he was sitting up and decided to fold himself in half to sleep. I moved him and noticed that he was a bit sweaty so hopefully that means his fever has broken. I think he woke up for a bit because we heard crying, but then all was silent.

I finally got my first Amsterdam post published and the pictures are up on Facebook. They’re actually not that exciting. One thing I realized is I don’t think, in all 3 days we were there, that I once got a picture of the Anne Frank house. I could take a picture of the stuff I got there, but I didn’t take a picture of the outside (you can’t take any inside). Lisa and I even walked past it on Day 2, but I didn’t get my camera out.

So tomorrow I’m going to the school to re-register for my French course. I’m not exactly sure what’s happening with it, but she said I could go in tomorrow between 1-5.  And it’s kind of a big deal because I’m going to get another letter soon from the work permit people (hopefully only one more) that’s going to ask for signed proof by the school that I’m attending regularly so I have to make sure I get signed up again! Since the course technically runs from September to June I have to re-register. Oh well.

I think we’re about to eat supper so I should get going.

*****some time later*****

One thing I was  going to mention yesterday that’s really cute. There’s this little puppet song with hand actions that you sing with kids. Basically it’s moving your hands (waving like the Queen of England, but more splayed fingers), then you make a rolling motion with them, then you hide them behind your back. Well, Sylvain is starting to do the wave motion. It’s mostly just with his left hand, but he started doing it today on his own, no prompting. It’s adorable. Hopefully the boys will sleep tonight. I know they’re tired, but when your sleep schedule gets messed up that does all sorts of odd things to you.

This morning I got up for a walk for the first time in over a week. I actually jogged a bit too. More than ever before. I would say that of the 5km I was out for I probably jogged for just over .5km. I know it’s not much, and it wasn’t all at once, but for me it’s a big deal. I know this is super weird, but I was watching Bride Wars last night (I’m not even sure why, I don’t like it that much….) and there is at least two scenes where the main characters (Anne Hathaway and Kate Hudson) are out jogging (or power walking :P) and I just really got the urge to jog. To feel the freedom that you don’t get from walking. Sometimes when I’m walking fast I get the urge to run, I just want to be able to. I want to be able to really stretch out and go. It’s harder because it’s colder now in the mornings, but I really am going to make an effort to up the ante a bit. What’s the point in doing this every day if I’m not going to strive towards actually moving better/more.

                                                                                                                       

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Escapees and maladies; what is with these chickens?

Wow. This hasn’t happened to me in a while. I have to leave or I’m going to break something.

*****10 minutes later*****

I apologize. I had half of this post written and now it’s gone. Usually it always automatically saves it as a draft, but when I went to put it in the full screen mode to better see what I had written it all just disappeared and that’s the latest draft it saved. I get so, so, so, so frustrated when this happens. The words just come and I can’t remember them if they run away! Grrrr…..

To explain the title. It was relevant, well, a while ago now. Greg and Adeline were out tonight and when I was making supper for Bastien and me I saw the chickens were loose! I thought the gate to their enclosure had come open and they escaped. Apparently not. No, Adeline had let them out so they could eat the grubs and such and forgot to tell me. I put them all away – chicken catching isn’t very hard or they just weren’t trying that hard to get away! I guess they would have gone in on their own. Now I know.

Bastien was supposed to start school tomorrow and I was going to be with Sylvain because the babysitter is on holidays for a while. Looks like it’s going to be both boys for the time being because Bastien has the chicken pocks! I’m so glad I had those when I was little, shingles would be NO fun right now. This morning Bastien only had one scab just under his lower lip. When he got home today they were all over! Sylvain has a few I think, but it’s a little hard to tell because he already has skin problems. The pocks are different from his rashes though, so I’m pretty confident he has at least 4 or 5. Chicken pocks and his first tooth, all in one week. Poor boy. It’s funny how Bastien got his the day before the first day of school and I got mine the last day of school (grade 1…I was 5 I think). I’m not sure if I was still contagious or not, but my Mom sent me to school anyway with the idea that it’s better for all the kids to get it while they’re young and get it over and done with. Well, the teachers called her to come pick me up. Before we left – I didn’t want to go, we were doing fun stuff – I gave every single kid in my class a big hug, tears streaming down my face. What was the point in sending me home again? Oh yeah, well, too late to worry now!

Today I didn’t watch a movie. Today I didn’t even go online until later this afternoon. After the morning ritual I went to take a shower. Before I went up there I mentioned to Adeline that I was thinking of going to the House of Giants in Ath. So she showed me a video on the Ducasse de Ath, a Giant processional and festivities. Unfortunately I missed it as it was last weekend, but being there would have been absolutely crazy! The tradition dates back 500 years and started out as a religious procession. In the Middle Ages when your average Joe – or whatever the common name was then – couldn’t read or write so apart from paintings and other visual aids the clergy would put on these grand processionals to teach the masses. Somehow (I’m not really clear on this part) giants became a part of these religious processionals. It started out with your main biblical gigantic type characters (Goliath, Samson) and more were added as time went on. Also as time wore on, the giants became more known for merrymaking than religion. That’s what they – the giants – say anyway…

In the house it’s mostly audio/visual presentations with the information being told like a story with many players (giants). There was a short film which highlighted a town in France (Cassel) known for the Giants, as well as Ath, mention of Austria, and somewhere else. I know later in the tour you ‘meet’ giants from Portugal. The giants themselves tell you that they just like having a good time. Eventually someone decided to create a wife for Goliath – which softened him up a bit – and in Ath they have Goliath’s wedding every year. This is just one facet of the festivities. The giants dance – which you’ll see in the video – it’s quite amazing how the bearer can take the weight! 130+kilos! That’s upwards of 290lbs. And you have to twirl and dance inside there? The job of being a bearer is a coveted one and traditionally has been passed down from father to son, generation after generation. In one of the videos I saw at the House they mentioned that as people are having fewer children they have gone outside of that tradition a little. You still have to be from Ath and you still have to know ‘someone on the inside’. The bearers take this very seriously. It’s an honour and something they love being a part of! I guess there’s this special dance they do 3 or 4 times? They have the opportunity to perform it once more during the festival if David defeats Goliath. To do this ‘David’ has to land his sling-shot in the hole where the bearer’s face is (where he looks out). I guess if he misses they can’t do the dance again.

There was something I found really neat. I guess they have a tradition (just in Ath, in Belgium, in Europe?) of the ‘burning of the pants’ or something of the sort. As far as I can tell it’s like the bachelor party in North America, where only your closest friends are invited. Well, in Ath, everyone is close friends with Goliath so the entire town is there for the burning of his – very large – pants. Let’s see. What else can I tell you about the Giant’s House? It’s a very cheerful place, although the explanations and story telling goes by quite fast and I know I missed a lot. The Ducasse in Ath is part of UNESCO (world heritage organization) and has gained more popularity because of that. More popularity with the rest of the world that is. Like I said before, this has been going on for 500 years and everyone who lives in Ath loves it and has been going to see the giants since they were little. It’s in their blood. It would be a sight to behold that’s for sure!

I’m going to leave you know with another video. This one goes back to my day in Dinant. I realize I don’t actually mention the Couque du Dinant (pronounced like ‘cook’, but more like…when you say someone’s crazy, but I don’t know how to spell it like that and does anybody actually use that word anymore? Bah, just watch the video, it’s funny!), but this video explains about them. I might just have to go back there one day and buy one…

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