I currently have extremely limited internet access. I’ve got fingers crossed to have that fixed today, but in the meanwhile, I’ll post a couple pictures. Truth be told, we aren’t sure exactly what’s happening, but we’re pretty sure this is what happens when you rub sunscreen in your eye. If any of you have any other thoughts, I’d love to hear them.

All said, Tyler seemed to be really happy, save for the red eye and rash around it.

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I’ve never played charades before. To get me to list and discuss the myriad reasons why this is the case, I’d need to be lying on a leather couch, talking to a guy whose name is suffixed with the letters PhD. Instead, I’ll simply say that it just isn’t my “thing”. I understand the basics of the game. A person will stand in front of everyone else and start acting like a fool, flapping their arms, hopping on one foot, and pointing at their nose. This is all done in pantomime, because the “actor” is not allowed to speak. The audience then shouts out what they think the phrase is. The actor grows increasingly frustrated that the audience can’t see that the answer is – OBVIOUSLY – Chuck Norris. Wash, rinse, repeat.

There are certain signals that the actor can make to help the audience along. If he touches his nose and points at someone, that person correctly guessed the word that the actor was working on. Tugging on your ear means “sounds like”. So, if he were to pull his ear and jump in the air, the audience would start shouting “dump”, and “bump”, and “hump”. I only know this because I’m pretty sure I saw an episode of The Cosby Show, or Full House when I was younger where the family played charades.

Here in the Gearhart household, we’ve been playing charades for the past three or four days. We made the mistake of having Tyler start the game as the actor. He’s only 7 months old, so we didn’t set high expectations for him. But he was horrible at it. Maybe we didn’t explain the game to him well enough (or at all), but Sarah and I have been yelling out our guesses over and over again, and Tyler hasn’t once touched his nose and pointed at us. Needless to say, we’re still in the first round of the game.

First, Tyler would grab and tug on his ear. “Sounds like”, I thought. No problem. Then Tyler would yell and scream. Sarah and I thought of every rhyming word we could think of. Steam, team, cream, deem, slipstream. Nothing. Bell, cell, tell, oyster shell. Zilch. After a few days of guessing, we decided that either he sucks at charades, or we suck at parenting, so we took him to our family doctor. I had to work, so Sarah took him in.

The diagnosis: Sounds like Bubble Smear Chinflection.

Tyler is now taking Baby Motrin for pain (berry flavored), and amoxicillin for the infection.

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Double ear infection. *sigh*

To top it all off, we just (last week) took Delilah to the vet to get her ears flushed. She’s had ear problems and allergies since the day we got her. We have to put medicine in her ears everyday and give her an antibiotic pill with her food.

DOUBLE double ear infection. *double sigh*

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Do you mind if I do a non-Tyler, non-parenthood post today?

I had to fly to Nashville, TN on Tuesday. With the work that I do, I don’t necessarily have co-workers. I work alone 99% of the time. So do all the other reps around the country. So, our region has quarterly meetings where we all get together, go over numbers, and hang out. This quarterly meeting was in Tennessee. All in all, it was a good time.

I get there Tuesday around 11am. After getting hotel rooms figured out (what a FUBAR situation that was), we all had lunch. Pulled pork, grilled chicken, beans, coleslaw, potato salad, and some type of apple dessert. Yum yum. After lunch, we had a couple meetings, then a friendly competition. I threw the competition. I feel bad in hindsight. I didn’t want to win, but I also didn’t want to lose. We placed dead last because of my sand-bagging. Whoops! Then we had one-on-one meetings with our managers to go over our individual numbers/performance.

Once this was out of the way, we headed to our rooms, changed into casual clothing and waited for dinner time. A few of us went to the Applebees that was in the hotel. I had one drink. This was at 5:30pm.

At 6p, we all hopped in taxis and drove to a restaurant called “The Aquarium”. Obviously, it was a seafood restaurant. I’m not a fan of seafood. Sometimes, Sarah makes telapia which I find quite tasty. Aside from that, I steer clear of seafood. I just don’t like it. I decided that I was going to take a chance this day though. Whenever I find myself at a seafood restaurant, I get chicken, or a salad. This day, I got the Sirloin and Shrimp dinner (sometimes called a surf-n-turf).

The appetizers came out first. I couldn’t even begin to name what all was there. I had bruschetta bread with some type of crab/cheese dip. Man it was good! When the food came out, I ate my Sirloin because it was delicious! I only ate about 4 shrimp though, because I just don’t find it as tasty. I had 2 drinks at the restaurant.

I should mention that my “drinks” are Captain Morgan & Coke, with a splash of grenadine (for a cherry coke taste).

After “The Aquarium” we all head over to Dave & Busters. I’d never heard of Dave & Busters before. So, if you’re like me, you need an explanation. Dave & Busters is an arcade for adults. They’ve got a ton of arcade games (video games, racing games, crane games, skiball, etc), but in a bar setting. I had 3 drinks here. I spent most of the night playing Daytona USA with 7 other guys. It turned out to be more of a demolition derby than actual racing, but it was a great time.

We left around 11p, because we used up all the credits that our managers gave us. The plan was to head back to the hotel. Those of us that wanted to crash could head up to their rooms, the rest would head back to Applebees.

The taxi ride (mini-van with about 5 of us in each taxi) is about 10 minutes long. On the way back to the hotel, my right cheek started itching. I didn’t think anything of it. About the time that we’re pulling up to the hotel, I rub my palm along my cheek and notice that it feels bumpy. When we got out of the cab and into the lobby of the hotel, I ask one of the guys if my face looks funny. His facial expression said enough, but he must not have realized that because, in addition to the look of horror on his face, he says, “HOLY S**T!!”

What followed was a bunch of pointing and commenting by the rest of my taxi-mates.

Physically, I felt fine. I had a slight buzz going. I only had 6 drinks over the course of 6 hours, so I was doing just fine. On the advice of my manager, I got two Benadryl pills from the front desk and took them. Aside from my less than appealing appearance, and some itching, I felt great, so I went to Applebees. I only had water while here. About 10 minutes in, the itching was much, much worse. And I noticed that there was some swelling at the corners of my mouth. The word “hospital” was mentioned a few times. Sometimes to my face, other times as part of another conversation (about me) that I wasn’t involved in. One of the people there was scared to be near me. Another guy said my face looked like a tomato, but covered in bumps.

I decided to check out the damage. A look of sheer terror washed over my face when I looked in the mirror. I only wish I would have had the presence of thought to have a camera nearby. My face was COVERED in bumps, and completely red. My neck was also covered. COVERED! I didn’t check below the waist, because I didn’t want to drop my trousers in front of a mirror in a hotel bathroom. I did lift my shirt though. My back was rather nasty and riddled with bumps, and my front side had about 10 or so. My face and neck were the worst though. There were some bumps on my arms as well.

My manager, and the manager of our sister region met me just outside of the bathroom. I’d never had anything like this happen to be before, so I was open to suggestions. They both said “hospital”. I still felt pretty good, so we (me and my manager) decided against calling an ambulance, and opted for a taxi instead. We went to the local hospital’s Emergency department. I filled out the information and waited. As I’m sitting in the waiting room, I noticed that I was starting to have difficulty swallowing. I immediately concentrated on my breathing and noticed it was a little raspy and wasn’t as easy to do anymore.

I mentioned to the very nice lady at the desk that my throat was starting to swell a bit. Within about, oh, 2 seconds, I was being taken to Emergency. A guy comes in with some pills and needles. We tell him that I’d already taken 25mg of Benedryl beforehand. He says “Well, you’re about to get some more then.” He gives me a Prednisone pill, and 2 Pepcid (because the Prednisone is hard on the stomach). He is then having a conversation with my manager about the stretchers at the hospital (we work for the company that makes them). I’m listening, but not really participating, because I’m not feeling so hot. Suddenly, and without warning, the guy (without ever even taking his eyes off my manager) stabs the needle into my shoulder.

It’s hard to explain the feeling. It wasn’t pain, exactly, but it sure as heck wasn’t peaches and lollipops either. It felt like someone punched me real good in the arm. Then, a crampy feeling started moving its way down my arm, all the way to my finger tips. It was extremely uncomfortable. Within seconds, I was a zombie. At one point, I am certain that I was sleeping with my eyes open. But the itching disappeared within about 1 second of getting the shot. The swelling in my throat and lips was gone within seconds as well. The bumps stuck around for a bit, but were noticeably better. I couldn’t walk straight when I stood up, and found myself wondering if it was dangerous to have had 6 alcoholic drinks, then following that up with a bunch of make-you-drowsy Benedryl.

Thinks were pretty fuzzy after that. I don’t know how much longer we were at the hospital. I know we got back to the hotel around 2:40am. My manager told me that I didn’t need to be at the first couple meetings and to just sleep in. I couldn’t tell you why I set the alarm on my phone anyway.

I got to my room, and my key wouldn’t work. I had to stand outside of the room, catatonic, for about 10 minutes, waiting for security to let me in. The last thing I remember was taking my shoes off. After that, everything was black. I was dog tired, but feeling great otherwise at 7am, when the alarm went off. I made it to the meetings just fine.

Before Tuesday, I had no known allergies. I still don’t know for sure what it was that triggered that reaction in me. My guess would be the crab dip stuff. From what I hear, shellfish is a common allergy for people to have, and crab is a shellfish. So… maybe. I’d only had crab one other time in my life. Sarah had some at Red Lobster, and I tried a bite. Nothing happened at the time, so… I just don’t know.

I played it off at the time, but once I felt the swelling in my throat, I was scared. Genuinely scared. I can 100% guarantee you that I will never touch seafood again (except for Sarah’s tilapia).

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Delilah
(See all of Delilah’s photos here)

Yesterday, Sarah and I decided we wanted Wendy’s for dinner. I know… fast food. We rarely ever eat fast food. Sarah’s an excellent cook, and LOVES preparing food. Yesterday, though, we were both having a hankering (I hesitate to say “craving” because I will forever associate that word with pregnancy now) for one of their burgers. I brought Delilah with me. She loves going for rides in the car and can’t wait to stick her head out of the window.

While we were at a red light and her head was out the window, the light hit the back of her head just right, and I saw 3 small bumps on the top of her head, between her ears.

“Poor girl”, I thought. “Stupid mosquitoes”.

We had our supper, played some cribbage and went to bed.

Now, let me back up for just a moment to explain something. Delilah and Logan each have their own beds in the bedroom with us. Logan always sleeps on the floor or in his bed. Same with Delilah. On Saturday and Sunday mornings, we typically all wake up “as a family”. We’ll call the dogs on the bed to lie with us for a bit before we all head downstairs. That’s about the only time Logan’s on the bed. For some reason, he doesn’t particularly enjoy being on the bed while we’re on it. BUT, whenever Sarah and I leave the house, Logan sleeps on our bed. It’s weird, I know.

Delilah LOVES being on the bed with us. As a matter of fact, whenever one of us (Sarah or I) get out of bed, Delilah hops on the bed to take the empty spot. EVERY SINGLE DAY. She’s gotten in a little bit of trouble for it, because she takes Sarah’s spot while she’s feeding Tyler. Not really a big deal, but Delilah hates getting off the bed once she’s on, and you have to drag her off of it. It’s humorous, except at 4 in the morning.

Last night, Delilah was whining for the entire night to get on the bed with us. It was insanely annoying. We told her to shut up and go to bed, which she did. But this happened a few times last night.

This morning, I get up and get the dogs downstairs to go outside for their “business” when Delilah stepped outside and the morning light hit her, I saw that she was absolutely COVERED in bumps. I stood there, staring at her and blinking stupidly. What the hell happened to my baby girl overnight? I just honestly thought my mind had gone all goofy and was playing with me. Delilah turned to face me and I saw that one of her eyes was swollen almost completely shut. When Sarah came downstairs, I told her what I saw, and called Delilah in the room so she could see.

I am insanely attached to Delilah. Even though she’s our dog, she is MY dog. So, I was already kinda freaking out over this whole thing. When Sarah saw her, she gasped, and it scared the crap out of me. She said it looked like hives. I didn’t know what to do, and Sarah had to actually tell me to call the vet. I left a message because they weren’t open yet. I then immediately hopped on google and started reading about hives and what to do. During all this, Sarah told me that Delilah’s been chewing on her feet for a few days too.

The general consensus online was that it was an allergy, and I kinda had that feeling already. I gave her 2 benedryl (per what I read online) and waited for the vet to call back.

Delilah’s had issues with foot-chewing before, and had an ear infection recently (for a free dog, she’s been rather expensive for us). We switched her to a dog food that’s completely corn free (apparently, many dogs are allergic to corn, and MOST dog foods have corn in it). It kinda helped. She didn’t chew as much, and her ears were doing better. I did get a new bag of dog food a few weeks back, but it was also corn free.

The doc usually doesn’t work Mondays, but told me to meet him at his office anyway (thank you so very much!!! I love our vet). He said it looked very much like an allergy and asked all sorts of questions. In the end, he said that food was likely the culprit, but it’s hard to tell. So, he got us set up with a “prescription” dog food. It’s called “Z/D Ultra”. It’s 100% allergen free, so if she clears up on this food, we’ve got a jumping off point. If not, who knows. He also gave her a steroid shot (sorry, Delilah) with a little bit of benedryl in it to get rid of the hives.

I got her home, and she slept the ENTIRE day. She didn’t pick her head up when we entered or left the room. She didn’t look at us while we were eating (which is completely out of character). It broke my heart.

It looks like the shot did the trick on the hives and itching though. The bumps are about 99% gone, and she hasn’t itched at all.

Here’s the story on the dog food. If it works… you keep her on it for 12 weeks, to allow her body to get rid of all its built up allergens. Then, you start introducing ingredients, one at a time, for 2 weeks at a time. It’s called an “elimination diet”. So, after 12 weeks, we boil chicken and add it to her food for 2 weeks. If that’s good, we add corn for 2 weeks, then oatmeal, then grain, then lamb. So on and so forth. If she has a reaction, that’s the food you stay away from. We don’t necessarily need to introduce all that stuff to her, just enough until we can find a dog food that will work for her. Z/D has BHA as an ingredient, so I don’t want this to be a long-term food for her. That, and a 27 pound bag costs $85. Ouch.

Here are pics of her from today:

These pics are later in the day, when she’s just sleeping:

Get well soon, baby D.

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