# Thursday, 02 October 2008

Latest news on Chaya Devoira

Been a hectic couple of weeks! Between the appearance of Chaya Devoira, a house full of builders (yeah I know, bad timing eh?) and Yom Tov, I've hardly had time to think. I've just got ten minutes now to add a post here before I get back to my washing, cleaning, organising supper, etc. I'm learning how hard it is to be a Mummy, and appreciating once again how much she does the rest of the time!

Anyway, they finally came home from hospital on Tuesday 21st Sept, one week and two hours after the Boss went in. Everyone was delighted to see them, even though they spent a lot of time hiding upstairs trying to get some rest. Chaya Devoira was turning a delightful shade of yellow, which was actually a cause for concern as she is small. She was sleeping pretty much the whole time, and not feeding a lot, which wasn't helping her fight the jaundice.

As a result, we had a call from the midwife on Friday morning who told us to get Chaya Devoira into the hospital without delay, as there was a doctor waiting to see her. To cut a long story short, she and the Mrs ended up in hospital again until Sunday afternoon. They had had her (Chaya Devoira, not the Mrs) under a UV light for 24 hours, and had got the jaundice levels down below the treatment level, and were happy that she was OK to come home.

About 18 hours later (Monday morning, erev Rosh Hashono), the midwife rang and said that the previous day's blood test had shown increased levels again, and they might have to go back into hospital. On top of the stress and emotional upheaval so far, this wasn't what she wanted to hear.

We spent the next couple of hours saying Tehillim, and B"H had another call to say that they would let her stay home and she how she got on. The midwife came in over Rosh Hashono to do some more blood tests. It seems that the levels are still too high, and we have to take her to the Special Care Unit tomorrow to have yet more tests. The poor little thing has had so many blood tests, that they are having difficulty finding a place to insert a needle. Coupled with her small size, which makes finding a vein hard in the first place, we are feeling for her.

Chaya Devoira 1st Oct 08

Anyway, on the positive side, everyone dotes on her, and she rarely gets put down (as long as the Boss allows). We don't have a shortage of people willing to look after her! Aryeh Yehuda even offered to take her at 3am when she wakes up! Given the problems I have waking him up at 6:30am on a normal day, I'm not sure how successful an idea this would be, but the thought was nice.

For those that haven't heard yet, I should mention that we had confirmation that Chaya Devoira has Down's Syndrome. The doctor suspected this when she was born, due to a slight slant in her eyes, and a couple of other signs that they recognise. It took some time for the tests to be done and results confirmed. Right at the moment, the only real difference it makes are a few more blood tests (like she's not had enough yet), and a heart scan in a couple of weeks.

It's funny in a way, as Nechoma Bryna told me just a few weeks ago that she wanted to work with Special Care children, and now she has the chance of in-house experience. As it happens, I made some enquiries about it myself a few months ago. I have been considering a change of career (fed up of computers), and think that this is an area that I would find rewarding. Again, I have the chance for some first-hand experience!

Some people have felt a bit awkward when we have mentioned the subject, so it's worth mentioning that we do not see this as a bad thing in any way. She is still our baby, and we feel about her just the same as we do about the others. She will have her own special requirements, but the truth is that every child has their own special requirements. Each one has to be treated as they need, as Shlomo HaMelech so wisely put it in Mishlei (Proverbs) 22:6 "Raise the child according to his/her way."

The Torah attitude to such children is actually very different from the secular one. Everyone comes into this world to achieve a certain purpose, and when we have done that, we return to Hakodosh Boruch Hu. Just as you give a worker only the tools he needs to complete a job, Hakodosh Boruch Hu only gives each neshomo the tools it needs to achieve its task here. Sometimes, a neshomo comes into the world that is so elevated already, that it does not need a great deal of tools to complete its task. Such neshomos come to the world as special needs children. Yes they are special, but in a much more fundamental way than the world at large considers. We are privileged (and yes, a little nervous) to have been entrusted with such a precious neshomo. The great Torah leader the Chazon Ish zt"l would stand up whenever he saw a Down's Syndrome person. He said that one should show great respect for such a lofty neshomo.

I should counter all that with the admission that we are nervous. We have little idea of what is ahead, and we know that it is going to be a hard road. Having said that, talking to other people in the same position, it seems that the rewards are infinitely greater. Apparently Hakodosh Boruch Hu thinks we are strong enough to cope, so we aren't going to argue!

The children took the news with surprising maturity. Their attitude was simply that she is special, and we need to give her even more love and care than we would have done anyway. They are very upbeat and open about it.

Anyway, I have used up far more than the ten minutes I had allocated! I have to go and get Simcha from playgroup, and the next two from school. I will end with a picture of Chana Liba (straight after a bath, hence the pyjamas and wet hair) holding Chaya Devoira...

Chana Liba holding Chaya Devoira 25th Sept 08
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# Monday, 22 September 2008

Baby update - she's got a name!

We named our new baby yesterday (Shabbos). She is now called Chaya Devoira, after my grandmother (known to all as either Bim, or Auntie Chaya, depending on who you are!) whose second yortzeit was just a week before the baby was born.

The Boss and baby (sorry, Chaya Devoira) are still in hospital, but both seem to be doing fine. Thankfully, Chaya Devoira has decided that sleeping the whole time isn't such a clever idea, and actually opens her eyes sometimes. She's also decided that feeding has its benefits, and deigns to do so once in a while. Still not as much as we'd like, but she seems to be getting there.

Huge thanks to all those who sent e-mails with mazel tovs and the like. Very much appreciated.

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# Friday, 19 September 2008

Mazel tov - new baby girl

After a rather stressful couple of days in hospital, and an emergency caesarean, the Mrs produced a lovely little baby girl this morning at 11:31am. She weighed 5lbs 8ozs, which is 2.5Kg for those newfangled metric people.

Here is a picture of her...

new baby girl

B"H both of them seem fine, considering the circumstances. The Mrs is whacked out and exhausted, and the baby sleeps all the time. Me? I'm not tired, I've forgotten what that means!

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# Monday, 15 September 2008

PSG children video

I just discovered Animoto, which is a great site that allows you to upload some pictures, choose some music and create a 30-second video. Here was my first attempt...

Not bad for about two minutes' effort!

For those that love YouTube, you can watch it there instead.

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# Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Camp Broughton Mews

The boys from the Mews decided to go camping tonight. Apparently this happens every year. Our boys were invited to join the camp, which was a good job as it was in our garden!

By pure hashgocho, I had brought our tent from where some of our stuff is still stored, so between them they had three tents.

These went up in a friendly fashion, with all the tent entrances forming a neat little courtyard...

boys camping

Shortly after this picture was taken, it started to rain. However, when I say rain, I don't just mean ordinary rain, this was rain on a Biblical scale! The bottom of Legh Street was about six inches under water (no, that's not an exaggeration), and the garden was a swamp. This did nothing to dampen their enthusiasm though.

That pile of shoes outside the tents was forgotten in the rush to close the tent entrances, so I don't think any of them are going anywhere tomorrow! That's assuming that their shoes haven't floated away on all this rain ;-)

It's now 9pm. Let's see how many of them actually stay the night there.

9:04pm... Well, it seems my prediction wasn't as far from the mark as it might have been. Our two boys just came in soaking wet. The rain came right through the outer cover and into the tent. They abandoned the plan for the night. Apparently, there are still a few boys out there, mainly because they are too scared to come in! I might have to take a boat across the garden and rescue them.

11pm... Eliyohu braved it again at 9:30pm, and most of the other boys either stayed or went out with him. Aryeh Yehuda is still hanging around in the house, trying to decide if he's going back out as well. Either way, I don't think there's going to be much sleeping there tonight!

Midnight... Aryeh Yehuda finally went out and joined the party at around 11:30pm. One of the boys has taken a tape player out, so there's something that could loosely be described as music blaring out at high volume, together with a whole pile of highly excitable boys, shouting, laughing and having fun. And why not eh? Night night, I want some sleep even if they don't :-D

The following morning... It seems they all lasted through the night, although I don't think they got much sleep. All in all, an interesting experience for them!

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# Thursday, 07 August 2008

New born baby care - the right way and the wrong way

I just came across this lovely article on the right and wrong way to look after a baby. Even if you're not interested in babies, have a look at the Right/Wrong pictures, they're really funny!

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# Tuesday, 29 July 2008

When it's all too much...

Sometimes life just gets to be to much to handle. You've done all the playing you can manage in one morning, you've sat on Mummy's knee and had a cuddle, and then you sit down on the floor to have a tantrum about something totally insignificant.

The result...

Simcha asleep on the kitchen floor

I never thought of the kitchen floor as such a great place for a shloff, but it looks like Simcha disagreed!

Update 11th Aug 08... She did it again. This time she sneaked off upstairs and took her "guggle" from her cot. Captivated by the guggle and the book she found, she fell asleep on her bedroom floor...

Simcha asleep on her bedroom floor
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# Thursday, 17 July 2008

Alien abduction - or not! Mobile 'phones are evil

Alien Abduction

Yes, I was messing, but it was worth it! I just came across this video. Well worth watching right to the end.

Click the little triangle in the lower left corner of the player above, not the big triangle in the middle.

Mobile 'phones are evil

This second video is weird. If you have a mobile 'phone, you must watch this and realise that you are letting evil into your life...

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# Thursday, 03 July 2008

Would this make YOU stop drinking?

My father-in-law just sent me this. Apparently, it was a poster displayed in 1919, just before prohibition started...

Lips That Touch Liquor Shall Not Touch Ours

Would that make YOU give up the evil drink? Not much incentive eh?

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# Wednesday, 02 July 2008

Erm, someone's idea of world domination is a bit out here!

I was just trying to find out the name of the rivers that flow around Baghdad, as I am doing a map of ancient Bovel, including the location of Shushan (as in the Purim story). I thought that Google Maps would be a good place to look.

I loaded it up, typed "Baghdad" in the search box, clicked the button and was shown a map of... North America!

Does someone know something I don't?

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