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‘EAR, NEWS, AND THROAT’
THE AUDREY UPDATE
A Brand-New Song and Dance
The other day I was at home, and I could hear my daughter playing in the other room. Audrey has learned a lot of new words recently, so it’s not uncommon to hear her talking up a storm while she’s playing. However, after a little while, I realized she wasn’t talking — she was singing! Earlier this year, Renee started taking Audrey to weekly music classes. At the end of each class, they all sing a goodbye song together. Audrey was singing that song to herself! It was really cute. I’m starting to think Audrey might become a musician. She loves to sing songs and play her little drums. In her music class, the teacher plays the guitar and all the kids get to play with shakers and cymbals. Audrey started going to class in the spring. At first, she just watched, but after a few classes, she joined in with the rest of the kids. As she learned more words, she started to sing the songs. In addition to the goodbye song, Audrey also likes to sing her ABCs and “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” It’s awesome to see Audrey developing her own interests. She just turned 2 last month, so she’s at the age where she’s able to decide what she likes and dislikes. In addition to singing and music, Audrey is all about barnyard animals. We have this storybook about a farm that she really likes, which we read before bedtime on most nights. During the days, we’re also able to take Audrey to a playground near our house. She loves to climb around and play in the big tunnel. I’m so excited that Audrey is getting old enough to do some bigger kid stuff, like play on the playground. Newborns are adorable, but they’re really just blobs who make sounds at you. Audrey’s starting to become a little person, and it’s cool to see how fast things change. Of course, it's not “Audrey’s starting to become a little person, and it’s cool to see how fast things change.”
always songs and bedtime stories. Parenting books describe toddlers as “cavemen” and there are times when Audrey is a demanding little tyrant. But her bad moods never last long — just as quickly as her bad mood starts, Audrey can turn and be sweet and loving again. We’re pretty lucky that her language skills are so advanced because it makes dealing with her toddler moods a lot easier. A lot of kids will throw a fit because they want something and aren’t understood. Audrey is pretty good at communicating with us, so we usually know what she wants. At least then she’ll just throw a fit when we say no. Fortunately, the fits aren’t that common. The “terrible twos” haven’t really been so terrible with her.
Renee and I are really looking forward to spending another year with Audrey. This year, I’d really like to get a baby pool and get her into swimming lessons. Renee is a little nervous about it, but I think Audrey’s ready to take that next step into childhood. We’re so happy to see who she’ll become.
–Dr. Seth Evans
Readers have loved adventuring with Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson as they solve some of England’s most dastardly mysteries for the past 100 years, but there’s one huge mystery that no one can seem to solve: When is Sherlock Holmes’ birthday? On Jan. 6, 2020, Holmes fans will celebrate the famed fictional detective’s 166th birthday, but it’s a day author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle never specified in any of the books. In “His Last Bow,” Doyle describes Holmes as 60 years old in the year 1914. That places Holmes’ birth year in 1854, but why was Jan. 6 chosen as his day of birth? In the 1930s, Holmes superfan, journalist, and novelist Christopher Morley decided Jan. 6 must be Holmes’ birthday because an astrologer suggested it. Fans doubled down on this belief because Holmes quotes William Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” twice in the series — the only literary work he ever mentions — and Jan. 6 is 12 days after Christmas. Additionally, in “The Valley of Fear,” Holmes wakes up disoriented on Jan. 7, almost as if he was out the night before celebrating something special! So, are you and your family up to the challenge of solving this mystery? Here are a few ways you can put the clues together. 1. Read: Dive into the original stories that created the world’s most famous detective. Read and exchange the books as a family, or have your little one practice reading out loud before bedtime. There’s no better way to experience the stories that have captivated audiences than by rereading them in any order, and you just may find a clue others have missed. 2. Research: Channel Holmes and Dr. Watson and become detectives yourselves! Read up on the clues, examine all the angles, and see what you discover about this mysterious birthday. 3. Host a Party: Host a Sherlock- themed bash to celebrate the
The World’s Tiniest Animals NOW YOU SEE THEM ... Often, it’s the big animals in the room — er, forest — that get all the attention. But a look at their smaller counterparts reveals a bustling world of fascinating creatures. From reptiles no larger than your fingernail to tiny primates that only come out at night, these animals are proof that size is not a limitation. Tiniest Primate: Madame Berthe’s Mouse Lemur Jumping from tree to tree, Madame Berthe’s mouse lemur is a tiny ball of nocturnal energy. At 3.6 inches long and weighing in at just an ounce, this is the world’s smallest known primate. First seen about 20 years ago in western Madagascar, it was named for charismatic conservationist and primatologist Madame Berthe Rakotosamimanana. While its body may be small, its large round eyes help it see in the dark, allowing it to catch insects for food. Found only in Kirindy Mitea National Park in western Madagascar, this species is identified as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Tiniest Reptile: Pygmy Leaf Chameleon The pygmy leaf chameleon also calls Madagascar home, but at half an inch long at birth, it is much tinier than its primate neighbor and not much bigger than an ant. These reptiles are the smallest in the world. At night, they climb high into the trees to sleep — though, for them, this might only mean a foot or so off the ground. Just like their larger counterparts, the pygmy leaf chameleon uses its tongue to capture its prey. Tiniest Mammal: Etruscan Shrew At an average of 3.5 centimeters long and weighing about 2 grams, the Etruscan shrew is the smallest living terrestrial mammal by mass. These timid creatures aren’t keen on being startled. In response to sudden noises, they’ve been known to jump, faint, and even drop dead. Don’t be fooled by their small stature though; relative to their body size, their brains are larger than most creatures (even humans), and shrews have a higher metabolic rate than any other animal. Because of this, they must eat 80–90% of their body weight in food each day. Of course, these are only the smallest known animals in their respective categories. As scientists and conservationists continue to explore remote parts of the world, it’s likely they’ll uncover many more natural wonders.
famed supersleuth’s birthday! Debate the clues of Holmes’ mysterious birthday, and see if any of your guests have interesting theories.
We may never know the day the world’s most beloved inspector was born in fictional London, but as Holmes himself said, “... When you have excluded the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”
MORE THAN ICE CREAM AND BED REST 3 QUESTIONS TO HELP RECOVER FROM YOUR TONSILLECTOMY
“What am I allowed to eat?” Stick to a diet you can eat safely after your tonsillectomy. For two weeks following your surgery, eat only soft foods like mashed potatoes, pudding, or ice cream. If you have to chew something up before you swallow it, don’t eat it. Stay far away from potato chips, pizza, or sandwiches. Even if you start to feel a lot better, stick to eating soft foods for the full two weeks following your surgery or until you are fully healed. “Will I bleed a lot?” While it’s normal to notice a little bit of blood mixed in with your saliva a day or two after surgery, bleeding after a tonsillectomy is relatively uncommon. If you do experience bleeding, gargle with ice water. The cold will constrict the blood vessels and quickly stop the bleeding. If you gargle with ice water for several minutes and the bleeding hasn’t stopped, call your doctor or go to the emergency room right away. Tonsillectomies are unpleasant surgeries to recover from. The good news is that once you’re healed, you’ll no longer be plagued with a sore throat, snoring, or whatever else made your tonsillectomy necessary in the first place.
At one point in time, getting your tonsils removed was a rite of passage in childhood. In the 1970s and 1980s, almost every kid had a friend who had gotten their tonsils taken out. Today, tonsillectomies (surgeries to remove tonsils) are far less common. Most doctors will consider other possible options before recommending a tonsillectomy. While not a dangerous surgery, recovering from a tonsillectomy is a painful process. If you need to have your tonsils removed due to chronic tonsillitis, obstructive sleep apnea, or another problem, here are the answers to three questions you may be asking. “How can I prevent the pain?” Pain is a common outcome of any surgery. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to prevent all the pain following a tonsillectomy, but you can manage that pain. The strategies your doctor recommends will depend on your age. • Children (6 or younger) — With younger children, it’s recommended to trade off between Tylenol and Ibuprofen every three hours. • Children (7 and up) — For kids and teenagers, a regiment of Tylenol and Ibuprofen are usually enough to manage the pain. If your child is experiencing a lot of pain, your doctor may prescribe a stronger pain medication to take temporarily. • Adults — Your doctor may prescribe a pain medication in liquid form, usually hydrocodone, provided you don’t have any allergies to the medication.
How to Make Your Own SAUERKRAUT Inspired by NourishedKitchen.com
HAVE A LAUGH
• 2 lbs cabbage • 4 tsp fine sea salt
• Jar • Lid with airlock • Something to weigh down cabbage, ideally made of a nonreactive material like glass
1. Remove outer leaves from cabbage. Slice very thinly. 2. In a large bowl, combine cabbage and salt. Let stand for 20 minutes. 3. Squeeze cabbage to release juices. Let the cabbage continue to soak and release juices for another 20 minutes. 4. Transfer to a jar and press down cabbage until completely submerged in its juices. Weigh down cabbage. 5. Seal jar with airlock. Let cabbage sit at room temperature and away from sunlight for one month. Once fermented, transfer to the fridge. Sauerkraut will keep for six months to one year.
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
Page 1 What’s Audrey’s Favorite Song?
Page 2 Do You KnowWhen Sherlock Holmes Was Born?
Page 2 The World’s Tiniest Animals
Page 3 Getting Your Tonsils Out? Here’s What to Expect
Page 3 How to Make Your Own Sauerkraut
Page 4 Word From the Westies
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JUST A NUMBER
3Tips to HelpYour Old Dog Feel Young Again
Plan a newmenu. Most senior pets are less active, so we don’t need as many calories as younger pups or kittens. Giving an older pet high-calorie meals that they don’t work off can result in sudden weight gain, which may lead to other health problems. Talk to your veterinarian about what senior food will best suit your pet’s nutritional needs.
It’s just Izzy this month. I want to talk about something that pup Emma doesn’t knowmuch about: getting old. I’m almost 10 years old in human years! According to the American Kennel Club, that puts me around 56 in dog years. I’m here to say that just because dogs and cats get older doesn’t mean we’re ready to stop playing. In fact, with a little help from our humans, most old dogs can still keep up with the youngest pups. Rethink your interior decorating. Humans and pets alike can experience bone and joint problems as they age. My hips aren’t what they used to be! Consider making a few small changes to help your older pets live comfortably, such as: • Avoid moving your furniture around. Pets who lose their sight can have a harder time getting around if the couch is suddenly in a new place. • Put night lights in the hallways to help your pet see better in the dark. • Elevate food and water dishes to reduce strain on your pet's neck. • Lay rugs on hardwood floors so your pets have proper traction.
Keep playing! Just because senior dogs or cats don’t play as much as they used to doesn’t mean we don’t want to play at all. In fact, regular exercise and playtime is important to keep our bodies healthy and improve our mood! Remember to keep things in moderation; too much vigorous exercise can also cause problems. I can’t say I’m happy to get older, but I know I still have plenty of games of fetch left in me. I hope these tips help you keep playing with your senior pets for a long time, too! IzzyPage 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4
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