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As I recently mentioned to a friend: it never rains but it's showering tidal waves during an earthquake. In fact you can also throw in a massive volcano eruption and a deadly comet, and some hurricanes for good measure.

Last Saturday, Tyl was readmitted to hospital. He would barely eat since his return home, and on Saturday morning he puked up everything he'd eaten half an hour before. So Mrs.B took him to the doctor, who said he'd better return to the children's ward.

Wolf had to go back to school, so we couldn't sleep over like we had done the first week of January. So Mrs.B rushed to hospital after bringing Wolf to school, and when school was out she took Wolf to Tyl. Then at five she got back home to make dinner for us all. When I got back from work I'd eat, and then it was my turn to go to the hospital. Tyl won't go to sleep before ten o'clock, so I'd be home around ten thirty. Very busy days, as you can imagine. The last thing we needed was for Wolf to turn sick too.

Yesterday Wolf turned sick too. We were at the dinner table, and he wouldn't eat his fish sticks - which he eats by the box normally. We wrongfully assumed he was faking it to get attention now that his little brother got all the focus of our love. Even when he announced that he had to throw up we were having none of it. Five counts later we were having a lot of it, as he puked over half the dining room.

So now I'm at home from work looking after Wolf, while Mrs.B is in hospital taking care of Tyl.

We wished you a spectacular 2012 a couple of weeks ago, and spectacular it is...


When she was pregnant of Wolf, Mrs.B happily explained to everyone that wanted to listen (or not) that she felt great and wasn't experiencing any symptoms of nausea or intestinal unrest or cramps or any of that stuff that other women sometimes experience during the first three months of pregnancy.

Oh hubris!

People strolling around in Antwerp may notice the regular pattern of puddels of slime in some streets and public places. It is a sure sign that my fast expanding bumblebee has been around. For this time she regurgitates more than an owl with a hiccup. What goes down, must come up. It's lunch revisited. And breakfast, and diner, and everything in between.

Furthermore, it's been proven wrong that this is something women only experience during the first three months of pregnancy. She is in her fourth month now, and still puking strong. That baby is kicking against her stomach with all its strength.

Which is great, because every time that kid is annoying she can play the 'do you have any idea how much I suffered when I carried you in my womb' card.

Vomit Comet

After a series of early autumn days, summer has made a short come-back here. Last weekend we enjoyed a couple of warm sunny days, and what better way to spend them than in the company of friends in a beautiful 'gite' in the Ardennes. This time, we went to the easternmost part of Belgium, to the small town of Malmedy. It's a beautiful green region with the typical bulges of the Ardennes – you can't really call them mountains. It's also the part of Belgium where a couple of thousands of people speak German, a consequence of two World Wars.

We enjoyed a gourmet grill, a barbecue and a spaghetti festival, with plenty of hors d'oeuvres and aperitif before, deserts after and snacks in between meals. In the morning we made long walks, which turned out to be quite the exercise – pushing a buggy with a 25 pound toddler over dirt tracks and up steep hills is not for the weak and meek.

Unfortunately, Wolf had caught a bad little bug which sprang into action on the first evening. When we heard him crying we went up to check him out, and found him all covered in chunks of breakfast, lunch and dinner. His little bed was covered in half digested food, not to mention the little guy himself. An hour of scrubbing and bathing later, Wolf was clean, refreshed and calmed down again. We improvised new bedding with a large towel and luckily we had a spare cuddly bear to replace his ever faithful Booh.

Later that evening, when we went to bed, I went into his room to check on him. I knew something was seriously wrong when my sock-covered foot went 'splitch'.

His bed was Armageddon. A giant puddle of puke, even larger than the first time, covered about one third of his bed. He had vomited right trough the mesh that makes up one side of his bed, creating that bloody puddle I just had stepped in. He was covered in mucus from head to toe.

So we went to alarm phase three, gave him a bath again and then I spent until 1AM trying to clean out the towel, his bed linen, his mattress, his Pjs, his teddy bear, etc.etc. with nothing more than a small bar of hand soap.

When I finally went to bed, I found Wolf taking up most of my place. So I made do with about six inches of bed and tried to sleep. At 3:30 AM I was still awake, dozing off occasionally until Wolf would kick me in the back again. So I left my place to the ungrateful little brat and went to sleep in the next room in a spare bed, right next to his cleaned but still very smelly bed.


But the rest of the weekend was actually very nice!

Dinner Disaster

We had some friends over for dinner yesterday. They were perfect company, so the title is not a reference to their conduct. As usual, it was our family that provided the disasters. Although I must say that three out of the six people we invited did call up to say they couldn’t make it. So much for our popularity.

It started with baby Wolf, who kept us awake all Thursday night, crying and wailing every half hour or so. We thought he was teething, a second tooth is popping through his gums. But the next day we found he had a high fever – 40.2°C which is 800°F if my calculations are correct (I never was strong at maths). In any case, it was severe and we took him to the baby repair shop. After much frolicking with needles and tubes, the doctor got enough blood out of him to determine that he had a whopper of an infection on both ears.

This medical emergency had taken us a lot of valuable time that we desperately needed to clean that dump we live in. So on Saturday we both worked hard to get rid of the elephant dung underneath the sofa and the ketchup stains on the ceiling next to the bats.

Then, Mrs.B started to feel a bit sniffy. And during the evening this progressed into a full blown fever with coughing and moaning and acute demands for blankets, medicines and attention. That night, she didn’t sleep at all and produced more wailing than a bay full of humpback whales singing the blues. Luckily, Wolf had somewhat recovered and he slept fine.

So on Sunday, our guests got greeted by the Mummy of Nefertiti without make-up. Mrs.B made it through the hors-d’œuvres, but at dinner, everything went haywire. Our guests were enjoying the excellent shrimp-omelette-tartelettes followed by a wonderful and very tasty Osso Bucco, when their appetites got hammered under the carpet. Mrs.B suddenly started to go very red and very hot – for once I’d gone easy on the spicy paprika so it wasn’t my fault – and then very pale. While everyone was feasting on slices of veal, she had a thermometer in her mouth. She saw her temperature rise to an alarming 38.4°C, when suddenly Wolf exploded!

There is no other word for it, he wasn’t just vomiting. An enormous spout of orange-yellow blubber blasted from his mouth, while two smaller jets of the same slimy liquid squirted through both his nostrils. It was like watching the space shuttle take off, with one main booster roaring and two main engines at full go. It was a rocket puke! Luckily we have a big table, or the guy sitting at the other end would have been blown through the window.

Several towels later, the flood was under control. We created an emergency centre to clean the little guy and to redecorate the room. Mrs.B was so impressed by it all that she spontaneously forgot to be ill – not for long though.

For some reason, our guests weren’t hungry anymore after all this. Which was excellent, because it meant more food for me.

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