Monday, December 26, 2005

Kaelen was so much fun!

This Christmas was so much fun for us because of Kaelen. At first he was interested in opening presents but that lost his attention shortly after the stockings. He was then more attuned to chasing the cat who was in her glory with all of the wrapping paper scattered everywhere on the floor.

We all got spoiled rotten especially Kaelen. He got a lot of really thoughtful and cool gifts this year. One present that comes to mind is "Shout" Elmo. When you press Elmo's foot, he starts singing and dancing. Kaelen gets all excited and then grabs and hugs Elmo. It is very cute. Although the pictures don't show him hugging Elmo, you will get an idea of how much Kaelen like to play with him!

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Yay! Santa Came!

We must have been very good this year as this was the sight that greeted us first thing this morning; a tree surrounded in presents and stockings full of prizes!

Merry Christmas Everyone!!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Excited for Santa

Although it looks like Santa already came, it was in fact Grandma who arrived this afternoon with a car full of presents. Kaelen has already learned the fine technique of being subtle when checking out what is under the tree.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

From Our Family to Yours.......

Merry Christmas and all of the best in 2006, from our family to yours.....

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Life Can Be So Unfair of these days, there will be some excitement to post rather than complaints. There are days that I just can't help but wonder what I did in my previous life to deserve such setbacks in this life. I know that is a selfish way to look at things, but I am in that bitter, selfish, "why me" stage right now.

We have lost yet another pregnancy. Back in August, it was one of those naive thoughts that went through your head thinking, "I honestly didn't think that would ever happen to me". After all, we had no problems conceiving, but apparently our problems are going to be carrying a baby to fruition.

On Sunday afternoon, I underwent laparoscopy surgery as well as a D&C for a possible ectopic pregnancy. Tests were showing that I had one which would explain the pain and bleeding that I had been experiencing over the previous week. Needless to say, it was a very emotional time for Paul and I, and one where I just wanted to scream at the world asking "why". Why us again? Did you not think that it didn't hurt us the first time in August that we needed to go through this pain yet again?

So as I sit here at home this week, trying to recover both physically and emotionally, I can't help but be bitter. How can you keep your spirits up like everyone tells you to do so? I know that everyone means it with good intentions, but it doesn't take away the hurt, the pain of another lost dream and the constant ache in your heart. You get to the point where you become resentful because you think that no one understands how you feel, but it is times like this venting, that you will touch someone's heart enough that they will share with you, their heartbreak of a similar incident. It is at those times, that you then truly realize that you are not alone, and then you can forge a bond out of hurt that becomes your dependency line as long as you need it.

Life truly sucks some days doesn't it?

Monday, December 12, 2005

All We Need For Christmas, is Kaelen's Two Front Teeth...

Never has that Christmas song made more sense to me than now. My baby's beautiful teeth are gone as a result of his attempt to do the waltz (or more like a Polka)with the kitchen chair. It is one of those "Would-A, Could-A, Should-A" moments for mommy but I try hard not to beat myself up. Accidents happen and I can't avoid all of them.

Kaelen's latest accident can cause long term side effects though, unlike his other minor scrapes and bruises. Paul took Kaelen to the Dentist Clinic at the Children's Hospital on Friday and saw Dr. Cholette, who happens to be the director of the clinic. After a thorough examination compiled with x-rays, she confirmed that Kaelen had imbedded his front right tooth and the tooth next to it, deeply into his gums. Because they were impacted at an angle, there is likely no chance for the teeth to survive. Due to the angle, the vessels that supply life to the tooth, were cut off, resulting in the tooth dying. She had mentioned that the end result will be the removal of both teeth, within 3 months.

Now many people have commented to us that this isn't a big deal because they are his baby teeth, but I am figuring that they have never had to deal with a situation like this. There is a chance that Kaelen could develop a speech impediment due to those missing teeth, and although the trauma to the area only occurred a short time ago, the pain that Kaelen is experiencing everytime something touches the teeth and gum area is extremely painful. Plus, he will be missing those teeth until the adult ones decided to come down - and that is hoping that those didn't sustain any damage upon impact.

Paul and I are trying to find the humor in this, and even going so far as to claim that Kaelen is sporting the Bobby Clarke look, however in the big picture we are devastated for Kaelen. He is a true trooper, but there is something fundamentally heartbreaking when you watch your baby in extreme pain and trying to deal with it. The only thing that we can do for him at the moment is to offer him lots of comfort, hugs, kisses and Tylenol. Hopefully very soon he will want to eat and he will let us get into his mouth to clean both his teeth and wounded area to ensure infection doesn't set in.

Poor little Kaelen. He just never seems to be able to get a break.......

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Frosty the Snowman Was Happy?

Frosty should have come to life in our backyard today and it likely would have been more fun for Kaelen.

After a week of a deep freeze, -12C seemed balmy, so Mommy dressed Kaelen up and we went outside to play in the fresh snow. I was all excited to make a snowman, but the snow was too fluffy and light. Kaelen, just wasn't overly impressed - period. It was a struggle right from the start; putting the snowsuit on (an early Christmas present from Auntie Christie and Uncle Rob, to getting Kaelen out of the door and to get him excited about this fun little adventure. Errr...not. Kaelen set the tone for the outing right from the get go by face planting right into the snow and coming up screaming because the cold snow was on his face. And Mommy's reaction? Uncontrollable laughter, as you can tell from the blurry pictures.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Like Mommy, Like Son?

Although the consensus is that Kaelen looks like his Daddy, I am still trying to convince myself that he gets at least some of his looks from his mommy.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Only 4 More Sleeps till Sinterklaas Comes!

Okay, well in North America, we still technically have 23 more sleeps until Santa Claus comes to visit us and rewards us for being good. But, in Belgium, Sinterklaas makes his arrival on December 6th. After a few discussions with my beautiful Belgian friends, Sinterklaas seems to be a very interesting man. He lives in Spain, and throughout the year, he records children's behaviours in a big Red Book. Come November, he takes a boat up to Belgium with his horse Piet. Upon his arrival, he will dock into a harbour and be greeted by the town mayor and citizens. A parade takes place honoring Sinterklaas's arrival which is televised across the nation.

On the night of Dec 5, Sinterklass will listen down the chimney to hear the children's behavior, if good, then his horse Piet will go down the chimney to see if carrots or hay were left in the children's shoes or socks as an offering for Piet. If so, he will then exchange the offerings for a gift or candy.

There really is much more to this tradition. If you are interested, then please go to this website:

Belgium Christmas Traditions

I should mention though, that the spirit of Sinterklaas in Belgium is in honour of Saint Nicholas. He sounds like a truly amazing man and it is really too bad there are more of him around in this day and age.

So, on an ending note, I hope that Sinterklaas is good to you, Ellen and Jan. I have so much admiration for the both of you and do hope that one day in the future, I can bring my family over there to stay in your newly renovated home!!

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Mommy Loves Weekends

I love weekends! I know that I am just one person amongst millions who would also agree. But....what are their reasons?

I love the weekends because it means that I get to spend two entire days with Kaelen. I can play with him, get frustrated at times with him and teach him things. The one that means the most to me right now is that I can share his nap times with him. My mother and mother-in-law are likely cringing as they read this, but yes - I love sleeping next to my son while he naps.

There is just something so peaceful and relaxing when your child trustingly slumbers at your side. It is the essence of contentment at times for me. When he curls his little body into mine and the gentle snore that sometimes comes with it, it just allows me to forget about all of the worries of the week and relax myself. He is like a sleeping angel, full of so much innocence and potential. It is humbling for me. And while I just drift off to a beautiful sleep myself, there is often a tear or two thanking God or whom ever, for giving me this precious little boy. It is an honour that I am thankful for everyday of my life.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Yes....he is sick again.....

The question is, is he really sick? Is it teething or does he have a cold? Who really knows. Parenting is truly is an artform of guessing what an issue at hand is.

Last night, poor little Kaelen was coughing his lungs out which often brought forth a result of puking. Even if there wasn't anything in his stomach, he would puke. Then came along diarrhea. Paulie, being the trooper daddy that he is, did 4 loads of laundry last night. Kaelen went through 2 sets of sheets on our bed, 2 on his own, a half dozen towels to clean up the puke and 8 sets of pyjamas.

We decided to keep him home today to get better, and doubt very much whether the daycare would have taken him anyways. Kaelen was glued to mommy all day long and had a few good moments but mostly bad. Crying spells, firey red cheeks, major runny nose, the nightmare of a cough but thankfully no puking and no diarrhea. A little fresh air in the early afternoon perked him up a little, but not enough to peel him off of mommy.

At bed time however, he developed a fever. He has now been sleeping soundly for 2 1/2 hours and I am praying (as is Daddy), that he remains so until 6 AM tomorrow. All three of us need our beauty rest and mommy's arms need a rest from supporting 26lbs of a sick little boy.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Playboys Bunnies....Eat Your Hearts Out!

Move over Mr. Heffner, the latest and greatest of a fine male specimen is here to stay. Not only is he better looking, he definitely has age on his side and is very attentive to a lady's cuddling needs.

A big thanks to Uncle Rob for giving Kaelen this gorgeous authentic Thai satin robe and check out the artwork on the back! Isn't he the cutest male you have ever seen?

Now....only if I can work on that obsession with the remote......

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Sigh...The Men of My Dreams

The one on the right is a definite dreamboat. I am just not sure of the one on the left some days........

Tuesday, November 15, 2005


Happy Birthday to the World's Best Daddy!

Although you are only the ripe old age of 34, Paulie, you are still looking damn fine.

Kaelen is a lucky little boy to have a fun, outgoing, caring and loving father like you!!

We both love you very much!!

Monday, November 14, 2005

Apparently we are all idiots.......

Today has been my final straw in defending the medical system. It always drove me nuts to hear of others complain about the waiting rooms, a doctor's bad advice or how long it would take to get surgery. I would always chalk things up to doctors are human and make mistakes too or if you had to wait forever, that is at the fault of the government and our social system. Maybe you just happened to have a bad day -who knows, but I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. Call it ignorance; call it naivety, but whatever you want to call it, it no longer exists with me. I am now a proud cynic of the medical system and doctors in general.

Kaelen has been to numerous doctor appointments in his young life already. Everytime we go somewhere for something, I feel like a narotic mother putting my child through pointless exercises, however, I am too scared not to do them because that shadow of doubt has been created by the doctor. I know that it is always better to be safer than sorry, especially when it is your precious child involved.

Why is it though, when the parent is convinced that there is something wrong with their child, the doctor always puts it down and never truly listens to the issue at hand?

Case in hand: I am absolutely convinced that Kaelen suffers from reflux. And, I knew right from the start that he likely would have it due to his prematurity. The wonderful, brilliant nursing staff at the SCU at the Rockyview (and that is a true and honest statement) even gave us the heads up on it because of the way that Kaelen would act after being fed. He would puke right after being fed, writh in pain whether it was to burp or pass gas. So, we would ensure to hold him upright for at least 20 minutes after being fed, elevated his crib so he was angled upright while sleeping and honestly - it worked perfectly. At four months, Kaelen developed a very stuffy nose and started refusing to breast feed. One doctor told me it was a sinus infection, another doctor told me that some babies just self ween. At six months, the projectile vomitting became apparent and continues to this day. As does the stuffy nose, restless sleeping, the constant little puke burps that get swallowed again and stinky breath.

Through out all of this time, I have been told that it is normal and our concerns were brushed off. Feeling helpless, I started researching on the internet to read more about reflux and GERD in babies. To my luck, I found this website:

Instaneously I knew that this is what Kaelen has been suffering from. So, I booked yet another doctor appointment. After suggesting that this is maybe what he had, the doctor agreed and sent Kaelen off to get an Upper GI test done on October 20th at the Children's Hospital. The two ladies that were there, that did the test were wonderful. One I was told was a doctor, the other a tech. Almost immediately, when they gave him the barium, they both simultaneously said "Yep, he's got the classic reflux" and proceeded to ask me what happens to cause the projectile puking. I explained and they both confirmed that is exactly what he had and to continue giving him the Zantec and feed him smaller meals.

This now brings us to today. We went back to the original doctor who had ordered this test done for the "official" results and to what we thought, to get a new prescription for the Zantec. To our surprise though, the doctor said that the doctor who analyzed the test claims that everything was normal and there was no evidence of reflux. Being stunned, I ask her how that could be when the two ladies doing the test, said that he did have it and were explaining to me reflux and how it happens by pointing to the screen while Kaelen was refluxing. The doctor then said that she wasn't sure but he definitely did not have reflux.

Now fuming and having the knowledge that I did from reading the website, I proceeded to ask her then why did Kaelen have immediate successful results when we put him on the Zantec? She had to look to Paul for confirmation. We both patiently explained that as soon as Kaelen got his first dose of Zantec, he did not projectile puke (he did it at least once a day) and after three days, his stuffy nose was gone as was the smelly breath. You know what her answer was? Well, then Kaelen definitely has reflux.

Okay, like what the f#@k? You just sat there and told us he didn't, because some doctor who wasn't even at the Upper GI test said that he didn't. But now you are telling me that he does? How can she just change her medical assessment just like that? And, she said, "Hopefully he will grow out of it one day". When I asked her about the constipation that is a side affect from Zantec, I was told that it is not possible. Okay. Well Kaelen has never had problems pooping, but has been since taking Zantec. Sweetheart, if you did your homework, you will find that constipation is a direct result from Zantec in infants.

I am convinced that he has reflux and has had it since day one. I have done my homework and am not a narotic mother. But why can't I just find a doctor who will really listen to what I am saying and say: "Yes, mom. You are right. That is exactly what Kaelen is suffering from." Or, will seek out a second opinion to give Paul and I the reassurance that we need.

So in short, I am beginning to jump on that bandwagon of belief that doctors truly have no clue in diagnosing health issues. They go to school for years to learn the basics, but when it comes to complicated issues, they just pass off mumble jumble in hopes that you don't question their opinion. I am one pissed off mother at the moment - is it obvious?

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Fastest Hand in the West

Kaelen has just recently discovered the thrill of the toilet paper roll. If you turn your eye for just one moment, he will have that roll unwound quicker than you can say "Stop".

It never ceases to amaze me the joys children get in just the smallest things in life. When was the last time you had fun with Toilet Paper?

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

My baby is already 14 months!

Today Kaelen is 14 months old. Part of me is excited and enjoying all of his daily achievements. The other part of me just can't believe that he is growing up so quickly and I mourn that he is not my little baby anymore.

Kaelen is like a sponge right now. You can see that he is assessing the situation and soaking it up for all it is worth. The latest trick that he has picked up is the dramatic crying if he doesn't get his own way. One of the kids in his daycare dramatically throws herself on the floor and sobs her little heart out and guess who has picked up that talent? Yes - Mr. Kaelen himself. And to his credit, he could likely win an Oscar for the show.

I tell you, he is definitely a little monkey some days.

Monday, November 07, 2005

When it Pours.

Poor little Kaelen. If it is not one thing that is wrong with him - it is another.

Kaelen just can't seem to get a lucky break and be healthy for one day. Yesterday, he was suffering from the following:

* Black eye. A result from attempting to dance with the coffee table.
* Fat lip. Resulting from a slip on those always appealing stairs.
* Two bottom molars trying to make their way through swollen gums.
* The reflux is back with a vengenance, meaning projectile puking...again....
* Constipation as a result from the medicine trying to control the refluxing.
* And now.....a wonderful chest cold. Courtesy of the kids at daycare.

How are we supposed to combat all of these ailments? Any solution I bring forth, has a counter reactive affect on another ailment. Poor kid.

These are the times when you feel completely useless as a parent. You know that your child is uncomfortable but what is the root cause at that particular moment? The old addage (from other mothers) is give them some Tylenol and all will be well....hmmm....well it might help with the teething, but it won't help him poop or stop puking. Giving him Zantec helps stop the puking but reeks havoc on his bowels so he only poops hard king cob marbles. Lactulose somewhat helps soften the stool. And of course there are the suppositories that aren't working efficiently enough to clean him out.

Basically when it comes down to it, I really have no freaking clue on what to do to make my child a little more comfortable to enjoy life.

Monday, October 31, 2005


Scared you didn't I? Or was it our scary pumpkins?

It is Halloween night and all of the goblins are likely tucked into their beds blissfully dreaming of the mountains of candy that they will consume over the next week. My little bulldog - a no go. There was no way on earth was that costume going to be put over his head today. Nor, was there any way that you could peel him off of Mommy to go outside to check all of the spooktacular hauntings going on.

So, we just settled on watching Daddy have the time of his life making the scarecrow on our porch talk to all of the little goblins at our door tonight. Paul really does take true pleasure of sticking a two way radio in the scarecrow and trying to either scare the big kids or make the little ones laugh. I think though, that it is the adults who are chaperoning the kids that get the most pleasure out of it.

It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown!

After searching for a pumpkin late yesterday afternoon, we came home with three perfect ones (not that our choices were all that great, leaving it to the last second). Mommy cut the tops off and Kaelen attempted to gut them out. Needless to say, Kaelen enjoyed every moment of exploring and getting his hands dirty!!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Happy Halloween!

I know that it is a day early and all, but thought that I would get everyone in the Halloween spirit. Our little munchkin was supposed to be a bulldog this year, however he has gone on yet another growing spurt within the last couple of weeks. As a result, his cute little costume no longer fits him. The costume is great - it barks when you press the red button by the chin!

Hope that you all have a happy and safe Halloween and that the little goblins that come haunting your door tomorrow night bring you the joy of what Halloween is supposed to be about - children having fun.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Mastering the Spoon

Being the proud mommy that I am, you tend to think that your child is beyond brilliant and receives all of the good traits in you. Any bad traits of course come from the other parent.

In this instance, I strongly believe that Kaelen has inherited his father's eating techniques. Dinner time of late can be a long, messy experience but as long as Kaelen is having fun that is all that counts right?

Monday, October 24, 2005

The Stork Forgot the Instruction Manual

When one has been blessed and their child pretty much sleeps through the night (okay, since May anyways), mom and dad tend to get complacent and spoiled in our sleeping patterns. But when your child decides to throw a curve ball at you, you become frustrated and at a loss as to how to handle the situation. How would you rate your parenting skills?

It is 11:30pm and your child wakes up crying. Do you:
Let him cry it out for a couple of minutes in hopes that he goes back to sleep
b) Go and check on him to ensure that all is okay
c) Check for a poopy diaper

It is 11:40pm and your child is still crying. Do you:
Let him cry it out for a little longer in hopes that he will soon go back to sleep
b) Cave in and bring him into your bed in hopes that a cuddle will settle him down to sleep
c) Check for a poopy diaper

It is 1:30am and your child is wired and will not go back to sleep. Do you:
Let him cry just a little longer. He should go to sleep soon right?
b) Continue to lie in your bed and pretend that you are sleeping while he crawls all over you
c) Check for a poopy diaper

It is 2:10am and your child is crying his heart out and trying to make himself puke. Do you:
a) Let him cry and scream for another 45 minutes in hopes that he will eventually go to sleep
b) Go into his room and yell "Shut Up" in hopes that will inspire him to sleep
c) Check for a poopy diaper

It is 3:00am and your child is still crying in his crib with screams to ensure that you realize that he is still standing there expecting you to check on him. Do you:
Let him continue crying, self induced puking and screaming in hopes that he will sleep
b) Cave in, go make a warm bottle of milk and cuddle him with the bottle knowing that he will go to sleep
c) Wonder if that smell could really be a poopy diaper that you should have checked hours ago

If you have answered:
- to all of the above, you are obviously deaf
b - you are likely tired because you got no sleep
c - your child has severe diaper rash
A combination of a, b and c - you are just as confused as us.

It has now become glaringly obvious that the stork forgot to provide the instruction manual on how to deal with episodes like this. That, or Paul and I are still considered major rookies in this game called Parenthood.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

A Future Canuck?

There is a theory out there that claims that parents will influence their child to accomplish dreams and goals that they had never accomplished. There are certainly many things that I want Kaelen to have or experience that I never had a chance on, but those desires are not materialistic.

Now, we all know just how much Paul and I love the Vancouver Canucks. And, I am often found joking about how much I would love for Kaelen to play hockey and we all know that Paul will ensure that Kaelen is successful in all sports that he decides to attempt.

Looking at these pictures, I just can't help but wonder if Paul and I have a hidden agenda on what we want Kaelen's career and achievements to be.......

The Whittinghams leap into the new millennium

At the suggestion and encouragement of a good friend, welcome officially to the Whittingham family blog.

And seeing as I am not the greatest at keeping in touch with updates, you will no longer have an excuse to make me feel guilty. I will try on a weekly basis if not more to keep you all updated with our exciting family life. Mainly of Kaelen's progress.

So here is to a new relationship of communication. I hope that you will enjoy our rather boring, quirky life as a new family!