4 month stats

Miri, despite having awesome thigh rolls, is apparently the runt of the family.  At her four month checkup on Thursday she weighed in at 15lbs 7oz and was 24.75 inches long.  This is a respectable 75th and 65th percentile, but Gideon beat her by an ounce and a quarter inch at his four month checkup.  Asher hit fifteen and a half pounds by 11 weeks and was something like 26 inches at four months.  To make up for her small height and weight, Miri rocked the head circumference measurement in the 85th percentile.  This blows past Gideon’s fifth percentile head and Asher’s average-head-on-a-comically-large-body 50th percentile.

In addition to three shots and a dose of Rotavirus vaccine, Miri also got her first tooth and her second cold last week.  It’s been a banner week all around!

IMG_7515Not even two teething toys could dull the pain.  Poor kid!

Summer roundup

I’ve been dreading this post and therefore ignoring my blog altogether.  So I’m going to give the abbreviated version.

In the last two months, to celebrate G’s first “real” summer vacation, we traveled to:

1) Boston:


Where we got to hang out with the Varacallis and Carters – a grand total of 8 kids ranging from 7 years to 10 weeks.  The boys hated the heat but loved seeing friends and grandparents.  Miri even got to meet Omi!













Fist bumps with Omi!







2) London.  We stayed in the T5 sofitel overnight.  We got connecting rooms and the boys partied like rock stars.  We had to remove the land lines from their room since they proved a source of much fascination.  After 12 hours in England we flew on to

3) Israel.

IMG_6711We landed at Ben Gurion and spent our first night at the Intercontinental at the Azrieli center.  There’s nothing quite like watching the traffic patterns from the 20th floor at 2am with a slap-happy three year old.

The next morning we drove for 3 hours to get to Nofeh Habashan, the kibbutz where Omer’s grandmother’s 90th birthday celebration was held.  It was far to the north, past the Sea of Galilee, near the borders with Lebanon and Syria.

Nofeh Habashan turned out to be a magical place – there was a pool with a sun shade, inflatable slip’n’slide, a bouncy house, pool and air hockey tables, a million cousins and aunts and uncles, and food everywhere all the time.  Pretty much the ideal vacation spot for the under-10 set and their parents (who just wanted to sit around and drink iced coffee). MTUfuEpvRHF-4U92V39fxi4mfjR_KLjbAzbYhgm-_QsfgsrbnFeOXgbRYjU8vrywNqjvueGYl_POcCxS7--URc


We took a hike up a tributary of the Jordan River, to an old mill with a beautiful view over the surrounding plain.





Gideon spent hours in the pool with his cousins Stav and Amit.





Gideon also enjoyed the slip’n’slide with his cousins.








Four generations, ranging from 90 years to 12 weeks.  There are six cousins in Omer’s generation, and 10 in our kids’ generation.   It was pretty awesome.

4)  England.  Again with the overnight at the T5 Sofitel, and then a very short flight (“That’s IT?” said Gideon) to

5) Paris.

IMG_6915Gideon’s class had studied France, and Gideon *really* wanted to visit the Eiffel Tower.  Since we were flying through England, we figured why not?

France was beautiful and hot and muggy.  We stayed in a fourth floor apartment that was a few hundred yards from the Eiffel Tower (we could see it from the kitchen window!).  We did a lot of forced marches there, but we managed to see not only the eiffel tower, but also the Louvre (or at least the Mona Lisa), the Jardins du Luxembourg (awesome playground) and a whole bunch of cafes.  IMG_7001


This is a happy baby on the grass in front of Hotel des Invalides.







L’arc de Triomphe. Rabbit ears courtesy of Gideon.  Asher slept through this part of the trip.







Parisian sunset from our apartment.






6)  England.  Six hour layover spent eating ourselves into a food coma in the BA departure lounge.

7) Boston again.  More grandparents, more awesome times.


We (re)discovered the Old Res in Lexington.  Taba helped Asher dig and dump to his heart’s content.







And Asher got in some much needed cuddle time with grammie, despite the zombie attacks.


Omer and I snuck away with Miri for a weekend of house sitting in Plymouth, NH, a lovely little town we’d never visited before.

From Boston we took our 8th flight in 30 days, and arrived back in SF just in time to unpack and repack for our annual trip to

8) Camp Mather


There was a lot of lounging by the lake.  And a lot of crying while traversing the campground to get to the dining hall.  “Doing an Asher” (i.e. dropping to the ground and screaming) is a thing now, apparently – or so said one of the moms at the friday night party.

We attended the last week of Camp Mather this year, and it was bone dry in the campground.  Everybody’s skin was cracking, and poor Miriam had  to get saline dripped into her nose to keep her nasal passages free of dirt.


IMG_7235 Apart from a couple trips to the local swimming hole in the Tuolomne River, we left camp only to visit Hetch Hetchy, the reservoir from which SF gets most of its water.  It is absolutely beautiful – had the valley been left undammed, it would have rivaled Yosemite Valley as a tourist destination, I’m sure.

The day we left Mather a forest fire broke out nearby – dubbed the Rim Fire, it has burned through over 200,000 acres of forest in Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park.  The burned area encompasses Mather (which thankfully was spared all but minor damage) and most of the south shore of Hetch Hetchy.  If Mather opens next year I suspect much of the vegetation will be gone.


So, after five weeks and roughly 18,000 miles we’re back in SF.  I have never been happier to return to our routine!




Things Asher has done to bug the everloving crap out of me today:

–  At the beach, ran up the dunes and back to the parking lot despite my repeated yells of STOP!

–  threw a thankfully empty yogurt container at me while I was driving.

–  Emptied a full bag of cheese puffs on the living room carpet (and on his head, and in his diaper)

– Emptied an almost-full container of body wash into his very small bath bucket; tracked extremely soapy footprints all over the bathroom; wiped his face on every towel in our towel closet that he could reach.

– Thoughtfully emptied a full container of kleenex into a large cup.  I can only imagine this kept him busy for at least five minutes.

I’m seriously ready to give up – he is immune to threats, doesn’t care about punishment, and is a little sh*t much of the time.  Fortunately he’s also super cute.


Going viral

Two weeks ago Miri started getting stuffy.  What with two big brothers, we figured baby’s first cold would hit early, so I wore her in the wrap and nursed a lot and tried to make her feel better.  By Monday, though, she was listless and wouldn’t eat.


Just after this picture was taken I took her temperature – it was 101.  This, combined with her rapid breathing and refusal to nurse meant a trip to the ER.  I took the kids upstairs to our babysitter Rio, and Rio’s mom Jen drove Miri and me to the ER.  Omer met us there.  By the time we arrived and were seen by one of the nurses, Miri’s temperature had begun to fall again.  The doctors ordered a chest x-ray, pertussis swab, white blood cell count, and urine sample.  After four hours in the ER, it was clear we were dealing with a virus, and the doc recommended a bolus of saline to help Miri get her fluid levels back up.  Miri looked much better once the IV drip finished, so we opted to head home instead of being admitted to the hospital, and booked an appointment with Miri’s pediatrician for the next day.

See?  Totally feeling better.


We made it through another sleepless, stuffy night, and Miri looked pretty bad in the morning – the fever was gone, but every breath was clearly an effort.  Her stomach and chest heaved, and her head bobbed every time she drew a breath.  One of my friends came over, took one look at Miri, and told me to take her to the ER.  So back we went.  This time we were admitted, and Miri was hooked up leads that monitored her oxygen saturation, respiratory rate, and heart rate.  The IV went back in, the doctor swabbed her for RSV, and fluids were once again started.  This time fluids didn’t make her rebound.  As the day progressed, her oxygen levels started dropping into the low 90s, and then the high 80s.  The doctor recommended a nasal cannula with blown room air to help her bronchioles stay open.  This brought her oxygen saturation back up to near 100% for a few hours, but then it started dropping again.  The doctor then recommended a high flow nasal cannula with 100% oxygen.  Again, this brought the O2 saturation back to normal for a while, but around 1am it began dropping again.  The doctor increased the air pressure to the point where I could hear it whistling into her nose, and went to consult with the NICU attending; Miri’s heart rate hovered in the low 200s and she was taking over 100 breaths per minute.  Both the attending doctors in the pediatric ward and NICU came and examined Miri, and a few minutes later the resident we’d been working with came back and said she recommended transferring Miri to the Kaiser facility in Oakland, since that one had a pediatric intensive care unit.

At this point it was close to 3am, I hadn’t slept, and Miri was looking pretty bad.  I texted Omer, and called my parents, and they booked flights to come out and help.  If Miri were to be in Oakland we’d need all the help we could get to manage the boys.  The ambulance arrived around 4 bearing a pediatric ICU doc and four EMTs.  We were in Oakland by 5, and immediately admitted to the ICU.  The gravity of the situation became apparent to me when the ICU doc wouldn’t let me nurse Miri just in case she had to be intubated.  After arguing back and forth with the doc for a few minutes, I was able to try to nurse her and then we both passed out for a few hours.


By the time the residents came by for rounds at 9am, Miri was looking a little better.  Her breathing and heart rates were back down to near normal, and her oxygen saturation was at 100%.  We decided to try to wean her off the blown oxygen back to room air, at which point the attending doctor said we could be transferred from the ICU to the regular pediatric ward.  By 5pm we made the transfer, and Miri was looking pretty good.

I had booked a hotel room near the hospital for the night, and Omer arrived sometime in the afternoon to spell me so I could go take a nap.  After a four hour power nap I came back to take the night shift while Omer slept.  Since Miriam continued to improve, we scored a transfer back to SF Thursday afternoon.  Her lungs sounded better, but the coughing was sounding worse (at least to me!) and she consistently had coughing fits in the wee hours of the morning that required suctioning and  made me panic.  On Friday the results of Miri’s RSV swab came back – she was positive for RSV.  This made everyone breathe easier, since we had a diagnosis and knew the expected course of the virus.   By saturday morning, we were given the all clear by the doctors, but I opted to spend one more night in the hospital, hoping the worst of the coughing would be done by the time we left the next day (thankfully it was).  IMG_6253So we were released on Father’s Day (best present ever, according to Omer), and walked home from the hospital.  By Monday, a week after our first ER visit, Miri was back to almost-normal – very little congestion, just a bit of coughing.  Miri now holds the record for most days in the hospital for anyone in our family (as well as only recipient of an IV), and I’m hoping this is a record that we don’t ever break.

2 week stats

Miriam weighed in at a hefty 8lbs 5oz at her two week checkup today.  That’s a 24oz gain in 11 days – pretty impressive for a little girl with a bad latch!


Trying to get those blue blue eyes, but failing!


Introducing Miriam Yvonne!

Miriam decided to keep us waiting, and finally arrived nine days past her due date at 1:43 in the morning on May 2nd.  She weighed in at 7lbs 2.5oz and was 21 inches long.  Miriam came out with one hand on her head, and screamed for about 10 minutes straight before trying to nurse.  I suspect she’s going to be a handful.

IMG_5861 IMG_5910

26 weeks

We’re entering the fun part of pregnancy: I’m starting to be able to feel feet and hands pushing against my stomach.  It’ll still be a month or more before I can identify those body parts, but my sons are very much enjoying getting “kicked” by their sister.

26 weeks

Weirdest pregnancy symptom so far?  My eyelashes have straightened out.