Tag Archives: travel

Festa italiana

A little over a week ago, my brother Zack called me with the great news that he purchased tickets to fly out here to IOWA for Paolo’s first birthday.  Which is super exciting.

This also brought to my attention how quickly Paolo’s first birthday is actually approaching.  We leave for Italia in three weeks, where we will stay for a month.  (I am not sure I can aptly communicate just how excited I am for this trip; I miss Napoli every single day.)  Then, on our way back home, we are stopping in Baltimore for about five days.  When we land back in Iowa, Zack arrives that week to celebrate Paolo’s birthday.  So, I have to order all of my supplies, send out invitations, and plan menus and playlists before we leave for Italia.

Luckily, I came up with a fitting theme: una festa italiana.  I have reserved a giant pavilion, started designing the invites, ordered some supplies, and I have planned the menu.  (And I will be able to purchase food and wine in Italy to ship here for the event! It’s perfect timing, really.) We have also set aside soccer/rugby/bocce balls to provide activities other than drinking wine for our guests. I love a great party, and my baby’s first birthday is an incredibly momentous occasion that I cannot wait to celebrate.  And we really couldn’t be luckier to be in a place where we have so many relatives living near by. I really hope everyone will be able to attend.

(Dear Mains in Iowa: I will have the invites out in the mail in the next few weeks! I look forward to receiving your RSVP! xo)

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Hives and hot wives

We have been so lucky to have such an unbelievably healthy baby; not having had to take him to daycare has made all the difference in Paolo’s health.  And I am incredibly grateful for this because the past couple of weeks have not been fun.  This ear infection has wreaked havoc on our lives.  First, the ear infection tortured my poor baby.  Then, the Tylenol and antibiotics helped, and seemed to clear up the infection. But the antibiotics.

Oh, the antibiotics.

Paolo’s digestive system did not agree with the antibiotics.  We got the full spectrum in the dirty diapers. One extreme to the other and then back again. Poor lil’ guy.  Then he got a rash all over his body. At first I thought it was a heat rash or possibly a reaction to his first time wearing sunscreen.  So I asked the doctor.  And I was told that it was what they call an “ammoxocilian rash.”  While it was a bit unsightly, it didn’t seem to bother him one bit.

Then the hives came.  Two days after his antibiotics regime was over, we were driving home from Northern Minnesota.  About five hours into our eight-hour trip home, Paolo started shouting.  And crying a little bit, mostly just shouting and squirming.  I thought that he was just sick of being in the car, so I did everything I could to make his trip easier. I sat in the back with him and read him stories, sang songs, played with his toys. When that didn’t work, we would stop so I could hold him for a little while every 40 minutes or so.

We finally made it home. And Paolo was exhausted and uncomfortable. Then, I noticed what I thought were a few mosquito bites on his thigh, which was weird, because I was so diligent in protecting him from the bugs.  I put him to bed in the hope they would go away without bothering him too much.

The next morning, I noticed more little ‘bites’ on his other thigh.  And no, I still didn’t think they were hives.  (I know, I know. I feel like a horrible mother.) Later that day, I noticed that he had developed more ‘bites’ on his forehead and shoulder. I watched as they swelled up and then went away.  Which made me finally realize that my little guy had hives.  As it was Memorial Day, urgent care and the doctor’s office were closed.  (Of course.) So we went to the ER.  After only a few hours and couple hundred dollars later, the doctor told us that Paolo had hives as a reaction from the antibiotics and gave him some Benadryl.

The Benadryl has helped the hives, but makes him CRAZY. Yes, CRAZY.  I think that the stuff makes my baby high.  After his dosage of the antihistamine, Paolo goes a little nuts. With lots of shouting, arching, and just basic irritability. Then, he’ll sleep a little, which is nice for me.

And Giuseppe. And Zack.

Did I mention that my little brother Zack has been a godsend the past few days? He has been so amazing and helpful to me.  Most of this has been going on while we were either up in Minnesota without Giuseppe or when he was working at the hospital.  I don’t know how I would have made it through the week alone, much less come home, unpack from Minnesota, do laundry and then pack again for our trip to Hawaii.

But I realized it was a bit much for his 21-year-old self when he announced last night that he “is trying to find a hot wife.  And then spay her.”

Okay, I know that sounds kind of crass. But you have to remember that my husband is a veterinarian.  You can call it ‘vet humor.’ It must have rubbed off on Zack.  And Paolo has not been making a good name for babies everywhere.

So, here’s to ear infections and the drama they bring. I hope my little one starts feeling all the way better soon.

(Side note: As I write this, we are on the first leg of our trip to Hawaii, and Paolo is sleeping like an angel in his car seat! Oh how I pray our trip continues peacefully!)

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