Wednesday, December 30, 2009


At ten o'clock we have to check Fisher's blood sugar. It's about three hours after his last insulin dosage, and therefore a good measure of where his levels will be through the night. He doesn't usually wake for the finger poke, and actually, even if we then have to give him some insulin (if his blood sugar is too high), he will generally sleep through that, too.

Monday night I opened the door to the kids' room to check him, and if he had been one centimeter closer to the door I would have whacked him with it, because this is where I found him.
Funny thing is, the next morning we asked him where he fell asleep. Ground, says he.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Favorite memories of today:

Alla telling me she can't wait to see the joy on my face
Her eagerness to get to the tree already (why do we have to snuggle, mom?)
A truly white Christmas
Fisher feeling better (he's been running a mild temp since Wednesday due to a cold)
Feeling joy
Seeing joy
Building a bigger-than-Daddy-Frosty the Snowman
Watching Ron build Alla a snow chalet
Simple, easy dinner, eaten in my pajamas (Alla and Fisher's, too)
Feeling full

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

One month: the story.

One month ago today, Fisher was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. If you would have told me on that day, when we were at the ER and they were drilling an IV into my son's arm, that we would be ok, that we'd actually ever return to normal, I wouldn't have believed it that day. But, today, one month into our new normal, I can say that we are fine.

Most people want to know how we found out.

Over the course of five to six days we noticed a drastic increase in his thirst and very, very wet diapers. I could have wrung out his diapers. Ron and I both noticed, and of course we are not both home all day long. It was significant.

We emailed our pediatrician that Monday morning, who suggested bringing in a urine sample. (This is not as difficult as it may seem when your son is peeing approximately every two minutes.) We gathered the sample, dropped it off, and within 2 hours of being back home, our pediatrician called me at home and told me to immediately take him to Children's Hospital ER. He had just gone down for a nap. She said to wake him up.

We did, Ron came home, and we drove to Children's ER. We got there around three, and by six we were done with the ER part, and being admitted to a room on the third floor. A nurse had laid out jammies for him and was putting his arms into them while I sobbed. It was completely overwhelming, having arrived with what seemed like a perfectly healthy child and then being told that we had to stay two nights with our diabetic child. Not to mention trying to figure out what to do with Alla!

She busied herself with art supplies from the playroom, making creations for Fisher's room. She went through all of her snacks. Around 7:30 we had somewhat figured things out, and Ron took her home for dinner and bed. He came back later to bring a suitcase to last me the couple days, and then Fisher and I got to sleep, very late.

The next few days were spent learning all about this disease, and how to manage it in our very young son.

We have tired days, because we've had to check Fisher's blood sugar levels several times through the night. But most of the days are just like before, just with some extra pokes to his little fingers, carbohydrate counting, and insulin injections. We are managing, we are learning, and most of all we are very very thankful for a healthy boy.

This video was on our first night in the hospital, when I thought we'd never get to sleep. The next morning he woke up at five, crying on and off for Daddy or Alla. Thankfully there was a construction site right out of our window, with a very active crane to keep his interest most of the day.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

One week til Christmas Eve.

And this is what we're doing -

Eating in-season pomegranates. Even Fisher is warming to them, though not with the gusto Alla displayed at his age. We have a tree!

We savor the Sunday paper.

We had a blast at our mama-daughter Saturday outing to Disney on Ice: Princess Classics! Alla says to me when it gets going, See, Mama, I told you there were going to be handsome princes!
After leaping out of his crib, we were forced to amend it, which he thinks is so cool as he climbs in and out, telling me, big boy.
Fortunately, this big boy bed business means he's safe in bed.
Unfortunately, he's OUT of bed a lot, turning the light on and off, playing in the diaper pail, putting wipes in there. Oh, fun.
She still likes stripes (so do I), and she always dresses herself in crazy combinations. Love it. Love her.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Tomorrow will be so fun!

I never posted about the tea party the Saturday before we took Fisher to the hospital, probably because Life kinda got shook up after that day.

But it was a day that I took her to meet three other friends and their mommies at a perfect little tea spot and these four little girls had their own pot of real pink tea and tea sandwiches and slices of cake and then she and I walked around downtown White Bear Lake afterward and it was just perfect.

And I thought, And this is only the first of three of these fun dates!

Tomorrow is #2, and I cannot wait to see the look on her face when all those princesses come to life!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Clearly, three sets of measuring cups will not be enough. Maybe I'll start a collection and hang 'em all over my kitchen walls.

2. Unfortunately, the awesome book, The Help, was ready for me at the library right around the time we got home from the hospital. It truly is wonderful, but I am up to my eyeballs in diabetes and Christmas, so I'm not making the progress necessary to finish the book by Friday's due date. I suck.

3. Alla's dance recital is next Thursday. I am so over this dance class. The recital is at seven o'clock. Hello, she's four? She's probably one of the oldest, too, so some of the little girls might be three. What three or four year old is at their best at seven o'clock? Not to mention the little brothers that have been watching rehearsals since September but will probably have to opt out of the real deal.

4. Four is the number of injections Fisher gets each day.

5. The number boxes are up and running! I love how it gets Alla out of bed for the month of December! Today's treats were books for each.

6. I should have called this post 'Whatever number I get to on Tuesday.'

7. I have no pictures to go with this post.

8. We check Fisher's blood sugar before we go to bed, has to be around ten. On a good night, we can all then sleep the rest of the night knowing his levels are in a good range. We had five of these good nights in a row, and then last night he was low at one in the morning, so we had to give him juice and check again in 30 minutes.

9. Who likes to drink juice at one in the morning?

10. This weekend is Disney on Ice! Alla is going to FLIP. I simply cannot wait to see her face. I wish I could video. Her, just her.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Hangin' in there.

Yup, we're hangin' in there. Tired, learning, trying to help each other out. Finding a new normal.
They still bicker about silly stuff like who gets to take Toby the dog in the car ride, but then sometimes they want only each other, and they love each other fiercely. I hope they will be each other's biggest fans. I am immensely proud of them both.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


We spent the first half of the week at the hospital, after finding out that Fisher has Type 1 diabetes.
So, today -

The Thankful List seems endless...

healthy children sleeping in warm beds upstairs in the same room

the most stress-free, and maybe yummiest Thanksgiving dinner on Killins record

sleeping in my own bed

togetherness, family

nurses = teachers

my mom and Bob sleeping downstairs, here to help and add love

getting out for a couple miles today

talking to family and friends on the phone


Ron home for a long weekend

leftovers in the fridge, 'turkey carcass stew' brewing in the crockpot

10pm blood sugar check = excuse to check in on them both

the possibility of a family walk tomorrow

We have so much.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Reading to him.

I was lucky enough to capture this, him having requested that she 're-rit' (read it), the B book, which he loves because of its inclusion of a 'buhdohzah.'Which is good, because once he discovered me (she eventually kicked him off her lap, that heavy boy), he slammed the door on my camera.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

That's the way we roll.

It's just your typical Thursday evening around here. Brother's in bed, so why don't we, say, bob for apples! Yay, she says, it's my first time bobbing for apples!Wait, Daddy, I'm gonna need my goggles for this. This is hard!Would you believe it? She did it. We were incredibly proud. The best part was that right after she took it out of her mouth, she swept those goggles off her face and said, That's the way I roll! like that was something she said every five minutes. We about died laughing.And then we got in on the action, too.Hope you're having as much fun on this fine Thursday!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Fisher is officially back on track. No more of that 5:15 nonsense. Halleluiah.

2. Last night after the kids went to bed, I said outloud, I love my life.

3. And then I said, I would love my life even more with a bowl of ice cream. And chocolate chips. And bananas. And chocolate syrup.

4. I've addressed my Christmas cards.

5. Fisher constantly tells us, Have it. But it sounds like havee-oht which is so cute we almost give him whatever he wants to have.

6. He also has decided that frantically saying I love you I love you too means that he won't have to do whatever it is he's decided would not be a good thing to do. So, for example, if you have to change his diaper and he is not for that, then he just keeps telling you, I love you Daddy I love you too, over and over, because he thinks this will get him out of the diaper changing. As if I love you = please.

7. One of my favorite blogs had this brilliant idea yesterday, just as I was getting super sick of doling out a piece of Halloween candy here and there, so I implemented it last night and went to bed (after that nice gussied up bowl of ice cream) feeling like Super Mom. Alla used her 'stay up until 8:15' (woo) coupon as soon as she had that hot little number in her hand. We used the time to do art, which turned into Christmas-list-making (she apparently wants Santa to bring her a stuffed animal squirrel and a stuffed animal skunk).

8. This turned into her telling me that when we were at the hospital when Fisher was born she was sad because we weren't there to kiss her goodnight. Which led to me explaining that I could.not.get.out.of.bed, so Daddy had to be there, too, to help me take care of newborn Fisher. Then she 'got' it, and decided to wish for bunk beds (for her and Fisher) and a new baby - all for Christmas, please.

9. At Half Price Books yesterday I scored The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society for seven dollars. We as a rule don't usually buy ourselves books in this house (I'm a sucker for kids' books, though, once in a while), however, I've been on the library list for this one for months now, and I'm sure that my number will come up right at the height of the busy Christmas season, and because it's so sought-after, will only be a two-weeker, so I won't get to finish it and then will have to wait another seven months to get it again. There are at least three other books on my request list with similar circumstances, so I spared myself the rushed reading and just bought it. For half-price.

10. I am totally digging this woman's workouts lately.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Fall clean-up in photos.

Last weekend Ron ignored the fact that the children had finally given the two of us their cold, and went outside to rake. Thank goodness I followed, too, if only to snap away, because fresh air felt, well, fresh.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Library day.

Fridays have become our library day. Not that we're opposed to going on other days, even multiple weekdays. We used to head over as soon as we had a bunch of requests ready for pick-up. Now we have music class on Fridays, which ends at 10:30, and the library is right on our way home. So we stop with our bag and load up. As of our trip today, we currently have 38 items out. This is no light bag casually slung over my shoulder as we walk back to the parking lot and I attempt, so far successfully, to keep my children from being run over by another minivan.

Fisher is not actually reading a library book in this picture of what they looked like as they waited for lunch today, but that's simply because we didn't find any suitable "digger books" today. Better check the rest of the state of Minnesota for a better selection.

So, what did we find? What did we request? A peek into our bag:

The Three Little Gators
Chicken Cheeks
City Animals
The Little Yellow Leaf

Plus, a few magazines for me, and Toy Story 2 for Alla to watch in the morning.

Unfortunately, she also has free reign of the bag and is able to put in whatever will fit in there, which means we also got about ten paperbacks of the Barbie, My Little Pony, Thumbelina, or Other Lame Princess persuasion, five of which we read this evening. Which is why I make it my personal goal to pick true gems to make up for that trash:)

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Ten on Tuesday.

1. It's Day Three of Fisher not getting along with the whole Falling Back concept. Seriously, 5:15? I mean that's early even by pre-time change standards.

2. We are going to need a second set of winter sheets. For some reason, we have two sets of summer-weight, but only one set of winter ones - they're jersey, but I'd like something else. Something tells me flannel sounds better than it actually is - not soft. Suggestions?
3. Alla tells me she has to plan a trip to Africa (here's where I thought she was going to tell me about the animals she wanted to see) because there are real pirates (They really do exist!) that she has to kill. But she has to wait til she's about ten, she says, cause she'll be so much smarter then. And Fisher will be older to go with her and Carter and Canton. After nap I think she's going to start planning the trip with them. You know pirates have swords that are very dangerous, she tells me.
4. Fisher's favorite book these days - Little Gorilla.

5. In general, this past month has meant a huge growth in his love of books. He wants to sit for longer ones, he has lots of favorites, instead of just two naptime books and two bedtime books. Now he's choosing from a bunch, and sometimes picking ones he's never read. It's very exciting! Not to mention all the memories I have of reading them with Alla.
6. He is super accident-prone. Thursday morning he and Alla were playing, and that ended in badly bruised teeth that had to be seen by the dentist (and of course since these are his two front top teeth, he continues to bonk them instead of letting them heal). Later that day he put himself in a basket and then promptly tipped right over and bonked his head on a corner, immediately resulting in a Looney Tunes-worthy knot. By the end of that day, I pretty much wouldn't even let him walk around. I must have forgotten how traumatized I was, however, because the next morning I left him upstairs while I started laundry, and no more than one minute later I hear a commotion and find blood. Turns out Alla left her scissors close to the edge of the table and Fisher (of course) found them. She figured the best thing to do was rip them out of his hand. Probably leaving them in his hand would have been a better thing to do. At that point I was just glad the blood wasn't from his front teeth actually coming out and lying there on the floor.

7. Good thing he's so cute. And sweet! He gives us smooches. And the squeezes, and runs around saying I love you I love you, too.

8. Good thing she's cute, too. And sweet! She brought me an apple snack today, and then helped dust the whole house. And snuggled me during our bedtime story - Vunce Upon a Time.

9. Pomegranate season is here! The little girl is super excited about this and has eaten 3 in a week. And they're BIG!
10. This probably should have been #1, but, um, it's November?

Sunday, November 01, 2009


Nothing too scary around here, unless you consider a doctor and a chicken to be frightening. Meet Dr. Killins and her chicken, Fish.
Like I said, not a lot of scary business going on!
I love that Fisher gets to wear Alla's costume this year (and next year, too!)
While Daddy stayed home to put the boy to bed and then pass out mostly treats, Nicole and I took Alla, Carter and Canton out for the annual Trick-or-Treating. HOLY JEEZ. Those kiddos were WILD. They literally ran from house to house, said a quick Trick or Treat!, an even quicker Thank you!, and then off to the next! She said she wouldn't stop til she filled up her whole bag. I am so glad I took Ron's camera out with me - I can feel their crazy movement just looking at this!
After awhile she got excited to go home and take over Daddy's job.
The highlight of the evening for her - seeing some strobe lights in the sky, dancing around. I told her it was a spaceship and she's still convinced and awed. She kept screaming, That is AWESOME!
The highlight of the evening for me - it was 40 degrees.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Four and a half.

My girl, you are four and a half today. Of course I only remembered this last night before bed and wrote it down so as not to miss it. You had no idea but were delighted about this "new" age when I told you. You have been doing four and a half year old stuff all day, like cleaning off the table after lunch (and you didn't even use the whole bottle!), and making me stand you in the closet where we "measure" you kids, to see if you are now taller. Well, by golly, you are! It isn't a real scientific measurement, of course, but it's also not impossible that you've grown in a, um, month, dear.
At four and a half, you
go through paper at an alarming rate
go through tape almost as fast
love to create
use your art box every single day
love books (today we read Emily and The Day I Swapped My Dad for Two Goldfish)
write your letters so sweetly
still choose blue as your favorite color
watch movies every Saturday and Sunday morning (this weekend: Pocohontas and Because of Winn-Dixie)
wear mostly 5T
love to snuggle or rock with me
eat pizza every Friday night
love Muffin Tin Monday
have gorgeous curls
have an ouchie on the bottom of your foot
go to bed by eight
wake up by eight
usually sleep later than Fisher
sleep with 5+ friends at night (currently: Baby Cow, Bear, Lily Kafina, Dog, Azzie, Laila)
love to dance (especially to: "Shake Sonora" or "Move it")
love music (especially the Shrek soundtrack, the Mary Poppins soundtrack, Elizabeth Mitchell, and all the songs on your "Happy Travels" CD)
make stuff daily
consider Carter and Canton your best friends
are so incredibly, immensely LOVED.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Busy around here.

Seems like it's been busy, which is evidenced by the ghost town of a blog around here. I thought the best thing to do was to actually download the photos on my camera, and see what we've been up to.

Daddy made a paper dress for Alla's new stuffed love, a blue monkey that she named Lily, which, of course, is short for Lily Kafina (pronounced kaFINEuh). Of course.Someone turned 19 months. My favorite 19-month thing he does: tight squeeze hugs. He wraps his arms around our necks and then squeezes, saying squeeahz. Love it.Alla, you loved your hair on this evening, kept brushing it in front of your shoulders, after taking your braided piggies outand looking in the mirror. You had just gotten home from seeing Monsters v. Aliens with Daddy at his work. We looked at you in your wide-leg jeans and mary janes and thought your looked so big. Just baths, nothing special, just everyday.Everyday fun.Something special: Nana + Pappi came to visit! They're flying back home as we speak, and we miss them already. But, good thing, we'll be seeing them in a month for Turkey Day!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Thursday ramblings.

I feel like we're in a new phase now, with fall upon us. It isn't like last fall where we had a baby-baby in the house, that big lump of baby boy I carted around on my hip all day long and who stayed in one spot. Nope, I basically chase this toddler boy around all day, in a futile attempt to be one step ahead.

And then there's the weather. Three weeks ago we were boarding a plane for Colorado, and we'd been wearing shorts. Since our return to the North, we've been in layers, and spent last weekend doing the big winter clothes switch-out. Flip-flops out, boots and scarves in.

The weather is keeping us indoors more. Lots more. If it does happen to be a day that will "warm up," it's not going to do that til the afternoon, so our non-preschool mornings are often spent in jammies and going from one inside activity to the next. The fresh air is precious and we appreciate the outside time, because we know pretty soon we'll be in the dark and cold time of year. And how is it that kids get so excited about snow, no matter that it was only three weeks ago we were in shorts? There is no protest, no whining about needing more days of sunshine and late sunsets and bike riding. There's just, at seven a.m., ohmygoodnessitsnowed, lemmegetmybootsandgooutside!!
This week was our last Farmer's Market til June. We got carrots, sweeties, mini pumpkins three-for-a-dollar, and a strange but lovely bunch of flowers.
I'm starting in on Christmas card-making.

In a fit of fall-organizing madness, I cleaned off the biggest spanse of our kitchen counter, and have now declared it a clutter-free zone. Nothing but cooking allowed there.
Sometimes Fisher, all on his own, will just blurt out, I wuv you. Heart be still.
I finished two great, great reads: Too Many Cooks and Still Alice. I'm onto the last in the Twilight series. The next two on my to-read list are Benny and Shrimp, and The Slippery Year. I might then want to read September, October, and eventually November Real Simples.
No school for us today or tomorrow.

We have yet to pick apples or gather pumpkins. But the weather looks near 50 degrees this weekend!

Fisher has decided to add an a to most ee-sounding words. Teeth is now teeahth, please is now pleahs, keys are now keeahs.
When he says plug it in and brings me a plug, I think it's so cute that I almost want to let him.

He's working on his sixteenth tooth.

Alla has a major paper habit. Like, I'm thinking that if everyone could just get her a ream of [recycled] paper for Christmas, that would be great.

She brings me gifts, gift bags that she's filled with tons of artwork, which is to say that she's drawn one heart on each of thirteen papers, folded them up, taped them shut, and then presents it to me. Daily. How to cherish, and yet teach the value of quality over quantity?
All in all, I think we're starting to embrace fall. It would be slightly easier if we had warmer temperatures and could be outside to view the color.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

First haircut.

I have searched through my personal archives for appropriate before pictures. No shortage there. Ron's wavered between Crazy Clown and Jack Nicholson look-a-like.
Fisher didn't think too highly of the whole haircut idea, just as I thought. I consoled him with, I'm sorry, buddy, this was all Daddy's idea.
It was over pretty quickly, I mean the kid hasn't exactly had his sister's luck in the hair department. He was amused with my wallet for a little while. Ah, the forbidden. Hopefully I can find my debit card and driver's license tomorrow.

Ok, ok, so Daddy might have been right. Maybe he did need a little trim.
He does look pretty cute.
No he looks older comments, or I'll ban you from the blog.