Stay at Home to Protect our Littlest Bulldogs

Ava McCoy reminds everyone to Stay Home.

Mara Crish, Photographer

Lakeview students always share in the excitement of welcoming a “Baby Bulldog” whenever faculty and staff members are expecting a new addition. The Lakeview family has continued to grow by leaps and bounds in the past few years. The Bulldog Bulletin checked in with 8th grade Language Arts teacher Sarah Davis and baby Nolan, 11th and 12th grade Guidance Counselor Caitlin Schnurrenberger and baby Grayson, and 11th and 12th grade Intervention Specialist Krysta McCoy and baby Ava to see how the Ohio Stay at Home order is affecting their families and what special precautions they may be taking with an infant in the home. 

Like most people, these cautious parents realized who their children were able to interact with needed to change immediately. Schnurrenberger and Davis had recently returned to work at Lakeview, but existence of COVID-19 caused them to rethink their childcare situation. 

Schnurrenberger said that while she is comforted knowing young children and babies seem to be seldom affected by the virus, she does “understand that they can be carriers” and so they have stopped seeing her parents and in-laws. She said the change is especially hard on her children “because my parents are the ones who watch my children while I am at work and the kids miss their ‘Ginny and Papa’.”

Davis said, “We are just staying at home. I have not taken Nolan anywhere since March 13. He was attending daycare, but I pulled him out since I was home and I didn’t want him to be exposed to anything.” Davis said Nolan’s daycare eventually shut down.

Davis also expressed concern about Nolan coming in contact with others. She shared, “My husband works in a power plant, so he is an ‘essential employee’. Since he is still going to work, there is a chance that he could be exposed and bring the virus home. He changes out of his uniform and takes a shower as soon as he gets home to avoid passing along the germs to us.”

As Ava is the youngest of the babies, McCoy is still on maternity leave and has been with her constantly since her birth in December. Still, she worries about Ava coming in contact with the virus. She said, “I worry that my daughter is going to get sick, especially because my husband is an essential worker and has to leave the house.”  Like Davis, McCoy said as a precaution, “when my husband gets home from work he changes his clothes and showers before picking up our daughter.”

While the order is to Stay at Home, sometimes the babies need to be taken out for necessary check ups with their pediatricians to make sure they are growing and developing as they should during this crucial first year of life. Those necessary trips have been a concern to the parents. 

Schnurrenberger said, “Grayson is due for his next round of vaccines; however, I am waiting to hear from his doctor what is the best plan of action regarding this. I would prefer to wait, as long as it is safe for him, to avoid having to go out.”

Davis is also dealing with balancing vaccinations with staying safe. She said, “Nolan had his 6 month appointment, and attended since he was scheduled to get necessary vaccines.”

McCoy feels very reassured with how her pediatrician is handling appointments for babies. She said, My daughter’s pediatrician is not seeing sick children at this time. He is only having appointments for new babies and well-baby checkups. For her four month visit, I was told that we will be immediately taken back to the room – no sitting in the waiting room.”

All three families have found they need to also plan well to make sure they have the basic necessities on hand to care for their infants. 

Schnurrenberger said, “We have strategically planned out our grocery pickups to avoid any extra exposure. I am trying to order all diapers, formula, and baby food well in advance, so I do not get in a situation where I am almost out of baby needs.”

McCoy said,I try to minimize my exposure to others by ordering groceries and essential items on Amazon and doing curbside pickup when possible.” 

Davis added, “It’s also a little frightening to run to the grocery store or to pick up items that we need since the number of cases is growing so quickly and they are hitting closer and closer to home.

But mostly, the precautions to keep babies safe from COVID-19 are the same as just about anyone else. 

Schnurrenberger said, “The biggest precaution my husband and I are taking for our family is we are not going anywhere unless we absolutely have to and we are avoiding all contact with our family and friends.”

McCoy added, “I am doing what most people are doing during this time. I disinfect handles and countertops and constantly wash my hands. 

Davis is listening to the professionals, “The doctors have been giving us the typical advice telling us to wash our hands frequently, disinfect surfaces often, and not leave home unless necessary.

Schnurrenberger brings up another concern and that is keeping her kids safe from not only illnesses, but also injuries. She said, Although I feel as a family we are being very safe in our choices, we still have to worry.” In addition to Grayson, the Schnurrenbergers have older brother Johnnie (5) and Taylor (3). “We continuously are reminding them that we have to be careful to avoid any silly accidents right now.” 

While being off during the pandemic is giving them extra time with their sons, with distance learning in place, Schnurrenberger and Davis are still interacting with students online. Working from home with a baby presents unique issues because babies don’t entertain themselves easily and also need constant attention. 

Davis has found that timing is everything.  I am so thankful to be spending extra time with Nolan, but it is very difficult to work at home with a baby…it doesn’t feel like ‘time off’; it is two full time jobs! I try to do work during his nap times and when he goes to bed. I think that it’s important that my students can easily get hold of me, so I turned Google Classroom notifications on my phone so I can respond to students’ messages.”

Schnurrenberger said, “Although this is not the way I wanted to get extra time with my children, I am really loving all of the extra time at home. That first year of a baby’s life goes so fast, so I am trying to enjoy the extra play time, nap time, and snuggles that I am able to have daily – even though a majority of this time is spent with my chromebook not far away. Working from home is not easy. I have been on the phone with parents or colleagues and all of a sudden I have my daughter yelling at me for “more chocolate”, but I try and just laugh this off and remember this is just temporary so make the best of it!”

While most children are sad for what they are missing, little Ava is so young she doesn’t even know what she is missing out on. McCoy explained, “The pediatrician said to keep Ava home and to have no visitors. Most of my extended family has not been able to meet Ava yet, and I planned on her meeting them once flu season ended – per my doctor. Now they will be waiting longer. Also, we had planned on going to church and having a big family dinner for Easter, which did not happen this year. 

The Bulldog Bulletin can’t wait for the day that everyone can be back together again and students can meet these babies at Lakeview activities. Until then, keep Everyone safe by Staying at Home!

Ava McCoy reminds everyone to Stay Home.
Mrs. Davis enjoys staying home with her son Nolan.
Nolan works on his keyboarding skills.
Nolan Davis enjoys reading just like his mom’s students.
The Schnurrenbergers take a break with a family hike.