If you’ve been reading this blog for long, you probably noticed how eventful last week was.

This week is just as eventful, only this time I planned (mostly) the activities.

Little Girl started preschool yesterday. Well, the rest of her class started yesterday. Little Girl has been getting over a cold, had a meltdown at lunch, and convinced us she was too sick to go. After last week’s orientation discussion about strict sickness standards this year, in light of swine flu, it seemed wise. (More about swine flu in another post. Suffice it to say I’m nervous about it, especially about Little Boy getting it.) Then Little Girl proceeded to recover miraculously and spend the afternoon playing happily.

Big Boy is really enjoying first grade and karate, and I’ve discovered a great new technique for getting him to put his clothes away and make his bed: push-ups. If the kids haven’t made their beds on karate class day, they have to do 20 push-ups. Big Boy asked me yesterday if it was karate day, and when I said yes, he gasped and cried “I gotta make my bed then or I’ll have to do push-ups!” Then he raced down the hall to make his bed! Why didn’t I think of that before?

Little Boy continues to find new media to express himself artistically. He combined ketchup and ranch dressing on a wooden table yesterday. (click for larger image)

Trying to pretend that my son didn't just do this with his ke... on Twitpic

Last night I was supposed to observe a simulation at the hospital where I work. They want to add parent actors to their simulations to make them more realistic for staff who are practicing life-saving skills in novel (and not so novel) locations. I and my colleague are the guinea pigs. To be honest, I was a little nervous about how I’d react — the plan was to stage what they call a “code” — this is a true-blue emergency in which a patient’s ABCs (airway, breathing, circulation) are compromised and the “code team” responds to resuscitate them. I was going to play the distraught parent watching the whole thing.

The unit in which we were to stage the simulation had a really rough weekend and has quite a few very sick children to care for now, so out of courtesy, we canceled the simulation for last night. I’ll be doing it at some point in the next two weeks. My colleague participated in her first last week and was stunned at how the experience effected her.

Friday I will be speaking at a conference for cardiologists across the country who are working together to improve the at-home mortality rate for babies born with a very specific heart condition (not one my kids have). This condition is extremely difficult and they’ve realized they aren’t doing a very good job preparing parents to care for these babies at home — too many are dying at home. As part of my job earlier this year, we did some survey work of parents asking them what they need to be fully-prepared to leave the hospital with a child with a newly-diagnosed condition. The cardiologist leading this nationwide collaborative heard about it and asked us to share what we learned. I’m thrilled to contribute to a project that, in a very tangible way, will save lives.

That’s just this week — I worked on our family calendar last night and when you add in all the classes, lessons, Bible studies, work events, birthdays, anniversaries, and company fun days at local amusement parks, the next couple of months are going to be packed.

Maybe it will help me keep my mind off the upcoming anniversary of Elli’s death.