Saturday, June 28, 2008

did you know...

...that by pulling your t-shirt up over your head and tying the sleeves of the shirt behind your head, you can transform yourself into.....

a NINJA?!?!?!?

The things boys learn at camp! :-)

Alex is doing well... thanks again for all of the well wishes. We're hoping for an ER free week this week!

Nothing much going on here... just taking it easy after our crazy month. We needed an easy day! :-)

Off to hang out with my family!

Friday, June 27, 2008


guess where we were last night....

yup.... the ER AGAIN!!! It's getting a little ridiculous, don't you think? :-)

Apparently Alex is allergic to this antibiotic as well. He developed a rash and then a high fever last night at dinner... I called the doctor and given the history with his foot, she sent us to the ER. It was reassuring to know that this was not a problem related directly to his foot (they're very pleased with how that is healing), but it's troubling to know that he may be allergic to yet another antibiotic.

We went to our doctor this morning for a follow up. She tried to sneak us in with a pediatric allergist today while he still had the rash, but it was a no go, no appointments until September. So, she wanted me to photograph him and email her the photos so she can forward them to the allergist.

So, here's my spotty boy...

he has dots all over his stomach, back and legs as well. His face looks the worst though. Oh, and if you're wondering why he looks yellow around his eyes.... it's because while all of this was going down yesterday, his eyes started stinging so he rubbed them....apparently enough to scratch his right eye.... sigh. The orange/yellow is from the drops they put in last night when they examined his eyes.

So, if you're keep score... in the past two weeks....

doctor - 5
ER - 2

ER - 1

Let's hope we're done!

I still have more fun.... non-medically related photos to post! I hope to get them up soon!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

a new week...

... a new child in the ER....
... that's what I get for saying last week that we don't go to the ER often... sigh.

Yesterday I looked into dance class to see Clara with her shoulder hanging limp and tears streaming down her face. She was in serious pain but wouldn't stop dancing. Her teacher saw her about the same time I did and sent her out. She was sobbing and her shoulder looked "low"... so I called the pediatrician who sent us to the ER. By the time we got to the ER, she could move it some and was in less pain... but we were there so we had her checked out. Clara has pretty flexible joints.... she used to dislocated her elbow when she was younger. Sometimes it was not fully dislocate and would pop back in by itself. We're wondering if that's what happened with her shoulder. How does one dislocate one's shoulder during Ballet you ask? Well... I'm thinking it had less to do with Ballet and more to do with the cartwheels they were doing during their waterbreak... sigh.

It's always an adventure in the Radtke household! :-)

More Missouri pics to come later!

Monday, June 23, 2008

thank you, thank you, thank you

I just want to thank you all for your comments, emails and prayers. I think we're finally, really on our way to recovery. We haven't been to the doctor since Friday... wooo hooo!! Alex's foot is looking and feeling much better. I spoke to the doctor today and his nasal swab test came back negative.... meaning the MRSA bacteria haven't colonized! We just have to keep a close eye on any cuts or scrapes he gets while he's finishing up his antibiotics.... but I think we've seen the worst of this already.

Thank you Becky for the suggestion of calling the camp... I did call them on Friday as soon as I got his official diagnosis. They didn't mention if they had any other reported cases.

So, now that we're semi back to normal, I started messing with my photos from when Clara and I stayed with my parents in Missouri. The next few posts are going to be a bit heavy on Clara photos but with Alex off at camp, I had no one else to photograph! LOL! I did take an occasional shot of the dog to mix things up once in a while. :-)

So... on to the Missouri photos....
One of Clara's favorite things to do at my parents' house.... ride her bike....
And one of her other favorite things.... fishing with my dad...

she caught a bunch that night...
and after she was done catching fish.... she went off around the pond to feed the catfish...
Those are from our first couple of days there. She loved being outside. She had gymnastics camp each morning the first week. She had a blast. It wore her out and kept her mind off of missing her brother most of the time.

Still a bunch more to come.... but I'll just work on a few each day.

Okay... the kids are ready to be tucked in.


Friday, June 20, 2008

quick update....

We saw two more doctors yesterday... the infection has stopped spreading but there is a large pocket of infection that they are worried about. We go back again tomorrow and then they'll determine if they need to open it up or not to clean it out.... ugh.

They also just called... it's officially MRSA... sigh.

Upside... he's still fever free and feeling fine!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

on the road to recovery....

...I hope! :-)

Yesterday I thought we were doing well, Alex's fever was gone and he was getting around fine. So we dropped off Clara at dance intensive and headed for the doctor's office for his re-check. Well... they didn't like the way his foot looked at all and even though he was fever-free they sent us to the ER to see if he needed IV antibiotics. They said that we needed to go fairly quickly but it wasn't a huge rush. So we walked back to Clara's dance class. Since she had about an hour left I decided not to pull her out but to leave Alex there with a friend of mine while I ran home to walk the dog and pack overnight bags for both Alex and Clara in case they kept him for the night. Ran back to dance just as Clara was getting out and as soon as she was done changing clothes, we jumped in a cab to the ER.

One of the fabulous things about living in the city is that there is a children's hospital (Children's Memorial). Thankfully, it is very rare that we have to go to the ER, but having spent nearly four hours just in the waiting room of a regular ER, going to Children's is a dream. You immediately see a triage nurse to assess where you should go (ER or Urgent Care), then sent to the waiting area. I was immediately called up to do the paperwork stuff and before I had even signed all of the papers, they had called Alex back to an exam room. Since I wasn't quite ready, the nurse sat with Alex and Clara and chatted with them while I finished up. How nice is that?

After that we went back to our little curtained cubicle where we spent the next 2 hours.

Here's Alex lounging on the bed....
I took it with my phone. That became our entertainment after a while.... them posing for pictures and then looking at them and laughing.... whatever it takes to stay sane! The first doctor took our info and examined his foot. She was ready to admit him for IV antibiotics but wanted to check with the attending physician first. The attending physician opted to change his antibiotics (he had gotten a rash after taking the first stuff) and send him home.

So, we went home, stopping at the pharmacy and then a pizza place for dinner. We go back tomorrow for another re-check. Let's hope they think he's doing better this time!

Oh... and now they're not sure about it being a spider bite, they think it might be Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus... fun!

That's it! Hopefully all of this craziness will clear up soon and I can get back to posting photos from our trip to Missouri!


Monday, June 16, 2008

Update on Alex

We called first thing this morning to make an appointment to see the doctor but the first slot available was at 4:20. That was fine because although it looked ugly, the only other symptom he had was some pain. Well... it all went downhill around 3pm. He started getting chills, running a fever and was nauseous. So, we went straight to the doctor since it wasn't too far off from our appointment time.

The doctor thinks its a spider bite... specifically a brown recluse spider bite. I'm not sure this was reassuring but the doctor said it was the worst spider bite she had seen. They had to drain it which was not pleasant... we were in the last exam room and I'm sure you could have heard Alex screaming all in the way in the waiting room. They did cultures so we'll see what they find out.

For now, he's on antibiotics and Motrin for the pain. The wound on his foot is covered with neosporin and his foot is wrapped in gauze. They drew outlines around the edges of the infection this afternoon so they can assess if it's still spreading when we go back to the doctor for a recheck tomorrow. If it's still spreading, we go to the hospital... sigh. We had a scare earlier when his temp shot up to 102.8, but its coming back down now.

Parenting.... always an adventure! :-)

one happy kamper!

We have returned! Although one of us returned rather reluctantly.... Alex LOVED camp!!

Here is where he spent the first 13 days of June...
Kanakuk Kamp

I can't even begin to tell you how much he loved it! He has already told us that he really wants to go next year and to go for TWENTY-FIVE days this time! Can you believe it? The camp is just an absolutely amazing place, so we'll do it if he wants to. I was a kamper there for three summers and I went for 26 days at a time (that was all that they offered at the time). I loved it too.

Going two whole weeks without talking to my boy was hard. Eight year old boys leave a lot to be desired in the letter writing department. I kept getting one sentence postcards that said things like "the food is good", "miss you too" or "camp is great". They did post daily candid photos online so I searched them daily for a glimpse of Alex. I spotted him most days. This is how I learned some interesting things about Alex... mainly, if left to his own, he will wear the same shirt daily. Our paperwork said that they would have a red, white and blue themed party and to bring special clothes if you wanted to. Well... I didn't get anything special but he had a red, white and blue striped shirt that he wore last fourth of July. I put it in his trunk and told him that was his party shirt... well, I guess everyday is a party when you're at camp because that shirt showed up in every photo where he was actually wearing a shirt! LOL! It is a special level of filthy (as were his white socks... sigh). I also had to question him about why he was wearing his pajama bottoms in his cabin photo.... apparently, he didn't really *need* them as pajama bottoms as they slept in their clothes at night.

It was so funny to see photos of a whole camp full of boys in charge of dressing themselves each day. This is the outfit he carefully chose to greet us with on parent's night...
yep... those are swim trunks and a bright red Cardinals t-shirt. If you're wondering what he's doing, he's participating in the plasma car race at the family carnival.

We went to a hotel without him that night and then came back the next morning for the awards ceremonies.

Here is Alex receiving the "Barnabas - The Encourager" award at his cabin's special award time...
And here he is with his award he received at the big whole camp award ceremony...
He was pretty darn excited... and we were pretty darn proud! :-)

Okay... off to start my day. We just got home Saturday night and Jeff left yesterday afternoon for London and Budapest. Today starts Clara's dance intensive and I may have to take Alex to the doctor. He got a bug bite on Saturday that just keeps swelling. I called the doctor on call yesterday and they gave me a list of what to look for.... but even though its not exactly doing what they said was dangerous, it still doesn't look right. It's now the size of a golf ball with a dime sized purple blister on top... that doesn't sound good, does it?

Okay... I'm really off now!

Lots more pics of our two weeks in MO to come!