Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A Much Needed Vacation

It was announced this afternoon, that New Braunfels school's (Comal ISD and New Braunfels ISD) will be closed until May 11th because of swine flu. While I am sorry for those that are directly affected by this nasty virus, I am grateful that our district is doing it's part in preventing further spread of the illness. It kinda makes me think..... is it more serious than the government is leading us to believe? What is it that they know, that we don't?

All four of us were working in our garden when we received the call. Brayden was running around cheering and Justin and I were grinning from ear to ear. Bailee, not understanding what was going on, was her smiling self as she watched her brother running.

While I wonder how/if/when these days will be made up, I find myself giddy with anticipation of all we can get accomplished around here. There is so much to be done.

We took the Math TAKS test today. Tomorrow would have been the Reading TAKS test. I guess the last two weeks of May will include TAKS testing. That ought to be interesting.

I hope and pray that we stay healthy so that we may enjoy this time together. Amazingly, Justin only has a couple of things planned so we will have plenty of bonding time as a family. Here's to family time!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Heads Up!

I have waited on blogging about this for a few days. I wanted to see how things would pan out. They have panned and I am blogging.

About two weeks ago, I had started Brayden on Zyrtec. He had been fighting a runny nose and the like and it was time for intervention. I was religiously giving him 1/2 to 1 tsp. each night for about a week. I didn't realize the correlation of the new medicine and the effect it had on his behavior until much later. But, the next day Brayden was a different child. He was bouncing off the walls, moody, angry, and just not his normal self. He would literally run around a room in the house. This went on for a few days and he spent them grounded from just about everything.

Friday (a week ago today) he walked into my classroom and I immediately saw the marks on his face. When I asked him what had happened, he tells me he got into a fight at school. I hadn't received a call or note about it, so him and I immediately headed over to his school (since it is right next to mine) and spoke to his teacher. Apparently this all happened in PE and that yes, him and another student did get into a fight and then another boy joined in and threw some punches too. Because he played a big role in the fight, he missed free centers, etc. Of course, at home he had consequences also.

I was so confused. Brayden will argue with you as the day is long, but he is not a fighter. He has never been a fighter. I just didn't get it. Later, Brayden tells me that a few days before that he had lost his Top Cat badge award for squeezing a friend of his too tight and wouldn't stop when his friend asked him.

So yes, at this point I am thinking..... WHAT IN THE WORLD ARE YOU DOING????? I didn't understand it.

Anyways, my mom knew that I was highly frustrated with the change in him. In passing she asked me if maybe there was a link to his behavior and Zyrtec. In my heart I was hoping there was because this was not my son. I wanted answers. So being the research nerd I am, I Googled Zyrtec and adverse reactions in children. Sure enough, there were thousands of hits. I read story after story after story from parents whose children experienced dramatic personality changes after being on Zyrtec. From severe depression, to anger, to aggression, you name it. It was so scary and ugly. I couldn't believe it! As soon as Zyrtec was stopped..... everything else stopped.

I was sick to my stomach, thinking that I was unknowingly giving my child something that was causing him to act out. Then, I became extremely angry at the fact that these drug companies provide us with these medications. There is not a doubt in my mind that they know that these reactions in some children exist. The LEAST they could do it put a caution on the label about watching for a change in behavior. The warning isn't there. Why? MONEY! I am sure if it was on there, they wouldn't sell their product as well. I know I would think twice about giving my child something that could affect their personality! BUT, I would KNOW to look out for the change and be prepared for it. So, I am at a point now, that I am mad. I am ticked that I "trust" that what is out there for children is safe AND effective.

I know Zyrtec is great medication for many. BUT, check it out for yourself. Read the stories that are out there. It is scary. For those of you who Zyrtec has been a miracle drug for..... I am happy for you!

So how does this story end? Well Brayden has been off of the medication for a week. He has not had it since last weekend. Guess what? He is back to his normal self. He had a fabulous week at school and his bouncing off the walls at home is nonexistent. When I asked Brayden on Wednesday, why his behavior was so good, he said "mommy, I don't feel like I am wacko anymore." Straight from his 6 year old mouth. He felt like he was wacko! He noticed the change. It was only then, did I tell him he would never take Zyrtec again and that I would rather him have snot.

So, the moral of this story is, if you notice huge changes in your child's personality, has he/she started any new meds? I have learned a valuable lesson. Although, I will NOT allow Zyrtec be an EXCUSE for his fighting.

I must say, we are THRILLED to have our precious little man back!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Greyson Morris

Greyson's mom and dad, Bill and Nicole, were able to travel to Houston on Good Friday. They were interviewed by the Fox station there in Houston. I found a link to the piece and wanted to share with all. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers as they address the committee members tomorrow morning at 8:00.

For your entertainment!

This story is just too ridiculous for to have made up. It totally sounds like I did. BUT, I have pictures to prove it, as you will see at the end of this post.....

Today was a hectic day. I decided that I would run to good ol' Taco Bell for lunch. So I get in my car and immediately notice that it smells kinda funky, okay... it smelled REALLY funky. I made a mental note to investigate the smell when I got home this afternoon. Well, as I pull out of the school, I hear this horrendous hiss and meowing. I look in my rear view mirror and about that time, I see this black cat come from the very back of my vehicle and jump over the backseat. I immediately recognize it as one of our two cats. This cat though happens to be more or less a stray..... it is extremely wild. It begins literally running around my car making all kinds of racket. I immediately just start driving the 20 minutes to our house, thinking that if I was to open the door it would dart out and get hit by a car. So I call and get my class covered (thanks Mitzi!) and begin the journey home. In the meantime, this cat is everywhere! At one point it is riding on my dash just to the right of me. In my hand I held a cap of Justin's and swatted at it when it would come towards me. All I could picture was this cat jumping on me in desperation. So I am leaning away from it and hitting at it with this cap. The next thing I know..... it is pooping on my dash. No not one little turd...... FOUR~

At this point I just start giggling and looking around for a hidden camera thinking surely this is being filmed. As I turn onto our road the poop starts rolling around my dash! It was DISGUSTING!

As soon as I pull up to our house, I roll down the window and that cat dashed out of there in a split second!

My tip to you.... don't EVER drive your car with a wild cat loose in it. I can't believe I did that!

I hurriedly ran inside and got some Clorox wipes and cleaned up the poo and headed back to school. With all the drama, I didn't get to eat! At about 10:00 last night I went out and rolled up my windows and locked my doors. Apparently the cat was in there and I wasn't aware of it. The craziest thing is.... Brayden and I drove all the way to school this morning and never knew it was in there.

I am happy to say the cat is fine and seems to have made it through the ordeal. I can't imagine how scared he must have been. Now..... does anyone have any ideas on how to get the smell out of my car????? I know the second picture is a little TMI, but it is for the effect. I had taken the pictures and was sending them to the teacher that was watching my class so that she would know I was not making this up~

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Our two munchkins!

The kids and I were outside this afternoon. They are both good sports for mommy when I have my camera. Of course, Bailee has a mind of her own. I let her do her thing and just click away. Brayden on the other hand is my little model. He loves posing for the camera. In the first pic, I was actually photographing Bailee and he said, "momma look over here at me". He had this serious look on his face. I shot it and it turned out pretty good.

The last pic is of Brayden chasing Bailee. It captures how well they play together. We are so blessed that our children adore each other as they do. Brayden is so good to his sister. He is now asking about having a little brother. Daddy and I both have informed him that, that is in NO WAY going to happen.


Today has been wonderful. It started out by us going to church and witnessing our good friends being baptized, husband and wife together. It was a great moment. Then we headed to eat with Mimi and Opi. After eating Justin and the kids went home to nap and I went to Gruene Market days with my mom. It was such a gorgeous perfect day to be outdoors! I found a booth there that had a ton of cute bows. I went overboard on the bows and Bailee now has just about every color you can imagine. I no longer will be searching over the house for one of her three bows! Woo hoo!

On a side note..... I have started my photography blog.... you can see it here. I have have finally figured out the problem I was having uploading pictures. It is here that I will post photos from my sessions and any other pics to share. The name of my new endeavor is Misti Moments, Capturing your moments one photo at a time. Thanks to Aunt Julie for coming up with the name! LOVE IT!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Committee to Hear HB 1795

The Public Health Committee has decided to hear Greyson's bill. It will be heard Tuesday April 21, 2009 at 8:00 a.m. Everyone that shows up in person at the Capital, will be able to sign a witness list to show their support of the bill.

Thank you to all those who have helped Bill and Nicole make this happen! Lives will be saved if Grey's Law is passed!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Testing Season

I love Spring.  It is my absolute favorite season.  The new growth around us, the warm weather, the thunderstorms, all tell us that Spring is here. 

There is another side of Spring, that drives me insane!  Spring also means it is TAKS testing time. If I have to look at another TAKS passage, I think I am going to flip!  

Tonight, as I was eating dinner with a friend, a young boy and his father walked in.  The boy looked to be in the 3rd or fourth grade.  They sat down next to us.  The restaurant was small and the tables were extremely close together.  You could hear EVERYTHING the table next to you said.  As my friend and I were talking I looked over at the boy and could tell by the look on his face that he felt strongly about what he was saying.  

As I eavesdropped, I heard him talking about the TAKS test. He goes on and on about how he just isn't good on TAKS, that this is all or nothing, and that if he fails it again he is going to have to go to summer school and he can't imagine having to do that.  I hear him say ... "Dad, you and mom both know that I am not a good test taker."  

It absolutely broke my heart.  I wanted with all my heart to run about to him and say.... honey, you have to take this test because law makers tell us we have to give it, but please don't judge how good you are or not based on a test.  It took all I had to not run up to him and say this and give him a hug.  I knew if I did that I would not only would embarrass the heck out of my friend, but would also freak him and his dad out.  The tears in his eyes were real.  They spoke volumes.
Just today, I had an 8th grade student come up to me and say.... "Mrs. Dunlap, why do so many people care about how we do on the TAKS test?  I know the answer.... it is because they want to beat the other schools."  I just sat there dumbfounded.......  I didn't have a response.

My heart hurts.  The stress these kids are feeling is more than we know.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Stitches Smitches

Today was the day. Bailee had her stitches removed. And yes, it was horrible, absolutely horrible. Daddy and Brayden were there too, but had to leave for Brayden's baseball game. So that left only Bailee and I. Let me just say, I am so very glad it is over. I have been dreading the suture removal since the moment they were putting them in. Apparently a couple were buried into the big scab that developed. So yes, they had to dig a couple out. Mind you.... this time there wasn't any numbing medicine. They had to remove most of the scab that had formed, using tweezers. That was the bad part. Ugh! I made it through the whole procedure without passing out! I was pretty proud. Once she calmed down, they gave her a sucker and boy did she love that. The nurse also returned with a specimen cup that contained her sutures they removed. What exactly we are going to do with it..... I don't know. They may make a good show and tell one day.

Anyways, thank God it is over and we can move on!

Monday, April 6, 2009

My First Family Session

Yesterday I had the pleasure of photographing a family.  I teach with her, and she knew I started doing photography on the side and asked if I would take their family portraits.  I jumped at the opportunity.  Such a precious family!  It was a windy day, but I was able to get some great shots. 

I am going to set up a different blog so I can update about our life and have it separate from my pictures.  Any ideas on names?  I am thinking of the oh so creative Misti Dunlap Photography.  I was hoping you might have some ideas......  any?

I wanted to share some of my favorites from yesterday......  enjoy!  Yes, as you can see, I am obsessed with sepia and black and white photographs.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

An Unexpected Trip

Tonight started out as a wonderful family night.  I hurried home and fixed dinner.  We ate and then headed to the barn to hang out while daddy worked. Afterwards we loaded into the golf cart and headed out into the pasture to throw corn for the deer.  The kids absolutely love doing this and it is so much fun watching them.  

The kids were just about finished throwing their corn.  Brayden had picked up this limb that was about 3 feet long.  He wanted to use it to hit cactus.  We didn't want him to start doing that since we were headed to the house.  Daddy grabbed the stick from him and went to throw it.  This all happened so fast and we aren't quite sure how it happened..... BUT, as dad went to lunge it, it broke in mid air.  Half of this stick flew through the air as intended.  The other half ended up hitting Bailee in the forehead just above her right eye.  All I saw was it hit Bailee and then blood begins pouring out and down her face.  In no time at all.... her face and hair were covered in blood.  Of course at this point, she is screaming her head off.  I panic and join in the screaming.  I thought it had hit her in the eye.  Brayden begins screaming, and I am running in circles, a worthless wreck.  

Daddy on the other hand, stayed absolutely calm.  He pulled out a piece of the stick that was stuck in her, and ripped off his shirt and immediately started applying pressure to stop the bleeding.  I jumped into the golf cart with the others right behind me.  I had calmed down a tad when I realized it wasn't her eye.  Daddy held Bailee tightly while applying pressure and just kept saying how sorry he was.  It broke my heart. 

We knew it probably needed to be looked at.  A huge knot had already begun to form.  Once we got to the house, we loaded into daddy's truck and headed to the ER.  It was packed, but because of the injury, we were able to get right in.  It was rough for our little princess.  They cleaned the wound and were able to get some pieces still inside.  She ended up with 7 stitches. Poor daddy, I feel so bad for him.  He is just sick that it happened.  No matter how much I told him, it was a freak deal and was a total accident, it didn't help him feel any better.  

Needless to say, we have new rules about throwing things around here.  We are so very blessed that it didn't get her in the eye.  The part that stinks is.....  we have to go back next week to have the darn stitches removed.  Daddy is on duty for that appointment.  

Daddy decided that he would stay home with her tomorrow.  Bailee is going to need some medicine for pain and we just want to give her a day of rest at home after tonight's events. When we got home, she was running around the house laughing and having a great time.  She kept babbling in her Bailee talk and would say dada... jibberish... jibberish, and point to her stitches.  She was telling us all about it.  Thank goodness she is back to her old self.  

Who Knew? Update Version..... Please pass it on.