Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Chicken Parmesan

I made this delicious meal for dinner. I hope if you make it, you enjoy it, too!

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1 cup plain bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan (divided into 1/4 cup portions)
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 to 1/2 cup flour, in a shallow bowl
2 eggs, lightly beaten, in a shallow bowl
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 jar prepared tomato sauce (2 cups set aside)
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella

Place chicken breasts between two pieces of plastic wrap and pound out to 1/2" thickness using a mallet or rolling pin.

Combine bread crumbs, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, oregano, basil and cayenne in a shallow bowl.

Coat each breast in the flour, shaking off any excess flour. Dip each breast in the egg and then into the bread crumb mixture. Set coated chicken aside on a plate. Heat oil in a large non-stick skillet. Cook until golden on both sides.

Spread one cup of the tomato sauce in the bottom of a baking dish and top with golden chicken breasts. (You will have to decide how big the pan needs to be. a 9x9 pan was not quite big enough for me, but a 9x13 would have been overkill.) Top each breast with the remaining sauce and sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses.

Bake in a 375 degree oven for 20 minutes or until cheese is bubbly. Serve hot with spaghetti and tomato sauce.

I also recommend some hearty bread to enjoy with this meal. Very yummy!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Physical Therapy Complete!

I'm happy to say that I have completed my physical therapy and feel tons better. Thanks to all who prayed for my pain in the butt over the last month. (That's funny to type out!) Of course, my chiropractor did his part, too.

We have 37 days until the due date for Ooh-Ah and I hope to remain (relatively) pain-free as we move forward. I highly suggest you visit your chiropractor for any kind of back/butt/hip pain. I didn't have enough of a chiropractic benefit for my chiro to do all the therapy I needed which is why I was referred out.

I must say the bare-butt massages will not be missed. They were necessary and did the trick, but pulling down your pants for anyone is awkward!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

It is Much Too Early

I got a text message today that said, "Can I pick up String Bean for a date tomorrow night? I'd like to take her out to dinner."

Is it just me, or are kids dating younger and younger these days? Perhaps Mr. Bean needs to start practicing at the shooting range!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

What a Deal!

Our local Dominick's Store is having a deal where you get $10 Kohl's Cash for every $50 you spend. That is a 20% return on your investment!

Guess where our weekly grocery shopping will be done this week?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Not Our Month

March has not been our month.

First there was the massive flu bug that left us all puking and 2 of the 3 of us in the hospital. (We are now getting all those bills thankyouverymuch.)

Now, we have a $600 plus repair bill for Mr. Bean's lemon car.

We can't wait until April!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Speaking of innocence...

Earlier tonight, there was a Stars Wars movie on TV. Walnut thinks Stars Wars is the coolest thing ever, even though he has never seen any of the movies. (Isn't peer pressure grand?) So, Filbert called Walnut to the TV and they settled in to watch. After a while, I hear Walnut ask what Anakin's mom was doing. Filbert said, "That's not his mom." Walnut replied with the wisdom and disgust born of 7 years on this planet "Then why is he kissing her?"

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Vacuum Phobia

We've known for months (or even a year?) that String Bean is terrified of the vacuum. It was never more obvious to me than when the cleaning service came today to clean the common areas of our condo building. We could hear the vacuum outside our door and she shivered in her high chair with fear.

30 minutes later, we went to get the mail. No vacuum cleaner in sight. After picking up our mail, we could hear the vacuum cleaner start on the floor above us. Oh, the sheer terror and extremely cautious steps my two-year-old took were fueled with adrenaline. I had to carry her halfway down the hall until we couldn't hear the vacuum anymore.

Oh the innocence of a child! I can't imagine having one fear in life--a fear of a vacuum which can easily be turned off. I hope she stays innocent like this for some time to come.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


All of String Bean's tests came back normal and we have been puke-free for more than 48 hours. I feel like we can finally start catching up with all the things that piled up while we were sick.

I can't wait to open my mailbox and find the bills from the hospital, doctors, and labs. I got my bill for my first physical therapy session today. It came in at just over $300! I sure hope that they were future-billing for dates instead of that being the cost per session although I am not holding my breath. I told Mr. Bean that we will definitely be hitting our max out-of-pocket with our insurance company this year.

What would we do without medical insurance?

Monday, March 8, 2010

Never-Ending Illness

Well, kids, I am home from the hospital. I got released on Saturday night after a second round of potassium to get my levels high enough. I'm happy to report that I'm feeling good.

String Bean, however, is on day 7 of a puking spree that does not want to end. We just got back from doctor's visit #4 for her and they finally ordered some lab tests. 7 blood tests and a stool sample. We were fortunate enough that she soiled a diaper during the appointment so we didn't have to wait it out for a sample.

Now, we wait.

We also had dentist appointments. The Bean family is cavity free. At last, some good news!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

At the Hospital (Part 2)

Yesterday, I told you about the dehydration that landed me as an overnight guest in one of the finer hospitals in the greater Chicago-land area. I concluded that post with the image of me hobbling around due to my piriformis syndrome really flaring up.

Shortly after publishing yesterday's post, my blood was drawn and it was discovered that my calcium, iron and potassium were low. I already knew about the iron. I'm on supplements for that. My iron levels have dropped much lower than where they were a few weeks ago, but the nurses have assured me that is due to all the throwing up I have been doing. The calcium didn't surprise me much. I know I need more.

The potassium levels were dangerously low. Normal is 3.5 to 5. My potassium was measuring at 2.2. This could be one of the reasons I was having so much pain in my piriformis area. (Time will tell!)

I was given potassium in my IV. While the nurse was getting the IV ready, I asked her if this would be like penicillin and burn going in. She said, "It might." Understatement of the year.

As soon as she left, my attention turned to String Bean who was visiting along with Mr. Bean and I was trying to determine if she had a fever or not. I started to feel a sting in my arm. I called the nurse in. She "stopped" the potassium and left. She hadn't fully stopped it and the pain crept up my arm. By the time she got the potassium stopped and flushed my IV with the hydrating solution, I was on the verge of puking and passing out. Mr. Bean said I looked like death. The nurse was clearly freaking out but doing her best to remain calm. Several other nurses came in during the episode and a call to the OB on call went out. My blood pressure was taken. I measured at 76/30 (or something in that ball park). I am certain my blood pressure was much lower as I was starting to feel a little bit better by the time the blood pressure was taken.

Mr. Bean wondered aloud if that bag was really labeled "potassium" and not "hydrochloric acid."

We finally got the "watered down" solution balanced correctly so I was not in pain during the procedure. The infusion ended at 1 am, and at 3 am, they had to draw my blood. There must be something mystical and magical about drawing blood 2 hours after the infusion.

My number needed to be 3.9 or higher. I was 3.4. So, I am now on infusion #2 which takes about 6 hours to draw. Not sure if the 2 hour thing still applies (assume so), which puts me here until 5 at the very earliest. This does not look good for me going home today. Sigh.

Waiting for the OB to come and do rounds so I have a better idea of what is going on.

Scariest thought: they were considering sending me home after triage and my first couple IVs on Thursday. Glad I decided to stick it out a bit.

Friday, March 5, 2010

At the Hospital

Well, I did not survive much longer past Mr. Bean. Unfortunately, being 7 months pregnant sure adds to the stress of the stomach flu on the body.

I woke up at 3 am on Thursday morning with the stomach flu. I was enjoying some quality time with the toilet in the bathroom until I realized that I was "leaking" out of both ends and perhaps I should enjoy more quality time with a bowl while sitting on the toilet instead.

It didn't take long for me to be vomiting bile, and by 7 am, I was ready to call the OB and find out if there were some meds I should be taking to reduce the nausea and hopefully vomiting. Wouldn't it figure that my OB is on vacation right now? Around 8 am, his nurse told me just to "wait it out" and after 48 hours I should be "just fine."

By noon, I was miserable. I had stopped throwing up around 10:30 am, but I kept hopping out of bed sure I would be vomiting at any moment. The nausea and heartburn I was experiencing were horrible. At 1 pm, Mr. Bean and I decided going to the ER would probably be the best thing I could do to alleviate the pain.

Upon arrival at the ER, I was immediately taken up to labor and delivery so I could be monitored. I was asked for a urine sample. When the results came back, I went right onto IV fluids. I was mercifully given Zofran for the nausea which is a miracle drug.

3 liters of fluids later, I gave another urine sample and still was spilling keytones in my urine (which is indicitive of muscular tissue breaking down - not a desirable outcome) so I was admitted.

Shortly thereafter, Mr. Bean called to let me know that String Bean threw up again at home. This poor kid just can't lick this bug.

When I woke up this morning, I continued to have severe diarrhea, so some additional labs were taken which we are waiting for the results of. Mr. Bean is working on a project for work and String Bean is asleep on the couch in my room.

According to the appearance of my urine, I am still very dehydrated despite having gotten 5 liters of fluid in my IV. We wait to see if I'll be enjoying another night at the hospital.

To make matters more comical, I'm having a lot of difficulty walking around. Imagine having diarrhea, having to carry and IV stand around with you and barely being able to walk. What a sight!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Another One Bites the Dust!

Mr. Bean came home early from work with a fever and chills and threw up. His response, "It feels so good to finally throw up."

String Bean slept all day long. Only woke up to go to the pediatrician and say hi to dad once.

I'm the one left standing. How long can I last?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Our ER Trip

At 3 pm yesterday, String Bean massively threw up all over her bedroom floor. I walked in and she began to cry hysterically because her pants were dirty. So, I threw her in the bathtub with all her clothes on and started peeling them off. Crying continued over the dirty clothes and how dirty she was. Shortly then she insisted on water...tears increasing. So, I grabbed her water and my cell phone. While I was grabbing the water and cell, the water sprayer she'd been holding she dropped in the tub and it sprayed water all over the bathroom. (We had 1 inch of standing water in one of the corners.)

With my hip/butt being what it is (read previous posts), just leaning over the tub was killing me. I called Mr. Bean and requested his presence.

String Bean came out of the bath and I wrapped her up and put a onesie on her. We laid down together and she puked all over me and her before I was able to spring into action. My springing is not very springy these days.

Mr. Bean arrived home at 3:15 in time for puke #3 and bath #2. Being the smart mom I am, I blowed String Bean's hair dry and put pony tails on top of her head to avoid having to do another bath if she threw up again. I also insisted we put zip up or button up shirts on the little one so we didn't have to pull anything puke-y over her head.

Little did I know she had much, much more puke in her system.

By the time we took her to the ER around 10 pm, she had puked 17 times in 7 hours. She puked in the parking lot of the ER and again in the waiting room before she was seen.

Almost immediately after being taken back, the nurse administered Zofran orally. Miracle of miracles, the puking stopped immediately. Upon being able to keep down 4 oz of water for over an hour, they released us to go home. (Thereby skirting the blood and urine draws!)

Upon arriving home near 1 am, String Bean asked for her teeth to be brushed and for 3 books in bed with her. She got up once in the night because she was thirsty. (Can you blame her?) And this morning she is enjoying "apple juice" which is really watered down Gatorade.

Armed with our prescription for more Zofran, we are ready to face the day and I am looking forward to physical therapy more than you can imagine!