Tuesday, December 22, 2009

great new kid sites.....

scratch that.....not just "kid" sites, but REALLY REALLY cool sites that kids under 6 will enjoy and parents can feel their kids are safe and learning.

pbskids.org (okay, that one's a given)

uptoten.com (out of Australia.....truly an amazing site, Sam loves it)

iknowthat.com (for all ages)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


There are certain things that moms feel are sacred. Nap time is sacred to me. That means 10-12 in the morning is pretty much a time I prefer to be at home with Henry sleeping. It's why I have gone to 9:00 mass (helps that the church is across the street too). If he doesn't get that first nap, the whole day is shot.

Why? Because like most infants his age, he gets clingy, only wants mama and really nothing makes him happy except being on my hip. I'm trying REALLY hard to break that, but it just results in more whining.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Santa bags

For each bag:
2 yards of fabric
2 yards gold cording
letters for name

Santa leaves stuff in the stockings and generally presents. Well, our stockings are in the great wonder known as "the storage unit". So, with Mom's help, I figured that I could wrap fewer presents if the boys had bags to leave out for Santa to fill.

So, I put my new found sewing skills to use and made Santa bags. The bags are ready to go, now all we need is some cookies and the jolly old fella to stop by!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Now see, that's more like it

Have you ever read Gary Chapman's "The Five Love Languages"? It's an incredible book that basically tells you and your partner what your currency is. You know, that thing that Dr. Phil talks about, everybody has it. We all need something that motivates us. For some it's a simple touch of the arm, others it's the act of picking up after a child, and still others the almighty dollar.

Anyway Eric and I read the book a while back (maybe two years) and we learned that his love language is affection. And it's definitely not just the affection you would think a guy wants. It's the little things, like a kiss or just a soft touch on the arm. Little bits of affection from me to him tells him that I love him.

For me? I'm a service person, when he does things for me or the kids, unrequested, that means a lot. It means, he's thinking about something other than himself at the moment.

There was an experiment this weekend that he didn't know about. Friday night he was extremely helpful. When I arrived at the house, he came bounding out to help me bring in everything. He'd ordered pizza ahead of time, helped get kids ready for bed after. So, affection was exchanged.

Saturday morning came. Out to breakfast we go.....again, same thing, LOTS and LOTS of help. I probably asked him to get into the diaper back 5-6 times and he did it without complaint or getting huffy about asking me if I had everything (a typical pre-experiment response). Took the boys to the store, no problems. More affection.

So, that's more like it. We've exchanged things based on our love languages.

Monday, October 19, 2009

4am close up....Henry was awake, so I snapped a pic

Dr. said it might have needed a stitch, but as long as we keep it clean and he doesn't rub it, should continue healing "nicely".

Sunday, October 18, 2009

eye update

Well, it's a "rug burn" on his high cheek bone and three separate chunks of skin/openings on the lid. I had to con him into letting me clean it up a bit with a q-tip and water, but I definitely need to call the Pedi just to get it looked at since his eye is watering and it can't dry out at all.

Questionable injuries

Sam was playing "hide and seek" with MIL and his puppets, spun around and lost his balance (like mother, like son). The following pictures are the result of Sam's eye meeting the corner of the sun room chair. It's split and scraped, no damage to the eyeball itself.

Everyone knows I'm probably a little quick (okay, okay, no little about it) to jump the gun on dr appt. But when you get an injury like this one, I do take a step back. After all, nothing they can do about it. Stitches aren't necessary, I gave him Tylenol and he seems to be settled down. A bit leery, but settled nonetheless.

He has what appears to be a blood bubble on the lid and when he cries, it moistens and bleeds into his eye.

So, the question is whether or not to call the pedi in the morning to have him checked out or even to go to Urgent Care to have him looked at today.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Lactose-free living

PediaSure and PediaSure Nutripals drinks are lactose-free. Which is great since it's about the only way I make sure Sam gets the nutrition he needs on a daily basis.

A few months back, my friend Susan told me about Breyer's having lactose-free ice cream. I was amazed because I hadn't seen in the store. Then again I wasn't really looking.

I found it and we started letting Sam have ice cream as a treat without worries that he was going to puke 30 minutes later.

Then genius struck last week after his IEP meeting. Chocolate PediaSure + Breyer's Vanilla Lactose-free Ice Cream = chocolate shake!

He gets three things: nutrition, treat, speech therapy......all in a small glass with a straw.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

I'm a very lucky mom!

Most kids by age 4 are asking for anything they see on tv or in the store. Not mine. I'm not sure why though. Is it because of his delay? I don't think so because we'll go to the store, we'll look at toys, he'll like something, but he doesn't ask for it. He doesn't quite grasp the concept of Santa, probably because he's only done two visits with Santa and both were when he was very young. He doesn't even ask for things for his birthday.

Perhaps it's because he gets very little commercial-ridden television. We watch Nick, Jr. (formerly Noggin) and PBS Kids. Neither of which have commercials for sugar cereal, toys, or other crap.

We've generally tried to stay away from character toys, which living in the Orlando area was tough at times, but I'll bet he has less than 15 toys/plushes that are name brand. If he saw things like Spiderman or Transformers, it was at school or birthday parties.

Yet, he doesn't come home asking for it.

Maybe it's because he doesn't get a lot of things, maybe he just knows better than to ask. He's a very appreciative little boy. As my MIL put it, he doesn't care if you gave him a ride-in car or a box of new crayons, he's happy.

He'd rather have a wagon to ride in with his baby brother. He's discovering all of his old baby toys and showing Henry how to play with them. (some days better than others)

Mostly I think it's a combination of all three: his delays, commercial-free television, and he gets what he needs, not just what he wants.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Sam's annual IEP

They started with the OT, and when she said that it was group setting, I kind of stopped the whole IEP. I started by saying to the teacher that I had challenges and that if we needed to talk after the meeting, that was fine. They let me go on. I let them know I wasn't all that happy with the program and that while I didn't want to be the pain in the butt parent, I felt that his services were being reduced even though he'd been making great progress. that the more progress he made, the less he was getting. Granted, that's what we want, but it seems that the older he is, the less services he's receiving one-on-one. And in order for him to continue on the same pace, he needs the same level, not less.

I told them that in the last 18 months he's gone from daily one-on-one services to none. That I understood we went from a phenomenal EI program supported by Arnold Palmer Hospital (Orlando's big children's hospital) and a school district with multiple elementary schools to a district with only three elementaries and one pre-k special ed program. This program is our only option right now unless I look at school of choice and make my own transportation arrangements. (which is something I may look into depending on the job hunt....if it meant a better program, I'd work 2nd or 3rd shift)

They responded by telling me that with a small class (8 kids) and already two adults, the kids are getting 1:4 help. When the OT is there, she has an intern, making it 1:2. They also sometimes have half the kids at gym, making it 1:1. I felt MUCH better after this.

Then they said they wanted to change his diagnosis classification. No one felt, after having spent 5 weeks with Sam and looking at his scores from May 08, that he needed the "developmentally delayed" label. They have now placed him solely in the "speech and language impaired" program.

This made my heart very happy that we could get rid of the PDD label for now, but sad because it was really something Eric needed to hear.

They all agreed that Sam's main problem is (and always has been) his expressive communication, but there is a receptive communication problem. Knew this, but okay.

The teacher said that she feels Sam needs visual cues for listening. Almost like he's still trying to learn to read facial cues. I said it could be that he had to read faces to listen before getting tubes that it's almost like a crutch for him. She said he sometimes doesn't respond when she talks to him if he's facing away from her. We agreed that some of that was probably selective, but that the majority of it was that he just really needs to face you to hear and understand what's being said.

I had every intention of asking for him to be retested since it's been 2.5 years and he's an entirely different kid. But they brought it up first saying they would redo it in the spring if I felt that we needed to.

We talked about kindergarten readiness for next year. And that's where I feel more of my frustrations came out. His program last year was ALL about getting every kid in the class ready for kindergarten, with or without services. They did a lot of academics, he was doing the Letter People, cutting/gluing/coloring/writing, even some math. The teacher admitted their program is basically a preschool for special needs kids. It's the only program in the district and right now Sam is one of the higher functioning kids, whereas last year he was middle ground.

The speech therapist gave me a few more ideas of how to get Sam's face muscles working harder. She also gave me an explanation of why my kid thinks he needs to shovel food in. With the low muscle tone, he's not feeling the stretch in his cheeks until it's bordering on way too much in his mouth. She said to use the electric toothbrush on the insides of his cheeks to get them stimulated.

Eric and I are fine with him going to kindergarten next year (w/ or w/o services) and repeating the following year. He turns 5 in July, so while he'll be ahead of the deadline (Dec. 1 in MI), but that doesn't mean he'd be totally ready. I told the teacher today, I'd be fine with him doing two years in her class then kindergarten in 2011 at age 6.

I signed my papers, happily that I got my frustrations out and that they understood where I was coming from.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I'm a sub now

Officially signed up to sub in five districts in my county. All because I can't seem to find a full-time job (surprise) yet. But that's okay. I'm ready to take sub jobs in any of the districts. I can even tell the system when I can and cannot work, like on days I don't have child care or the boys have appt.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Everyone has a talent

One thing I always hear in church is that we need to use the talents God gave us to help others.

It's as simple as exchanging services with a friend. Eric's not handy with cars, and that's okay, neither am I. I only know enough to take it to the dealership to get the oil changed. (which is great because Saturn will WASH my car in addition to changing the oil) Anyway, my friend P's husband is good with cars. Couple years ago, before they moved back to Illinois, C changed the oil in my car, I just had to get the parts. In exchange, I "helped" them pack. Well, I guess I was more of a social outlet for P and I brought Sam along to entertain their son. My point is, one service exchanged for another.

Everyone has a talent, everyone has some time in their day to do something for someone else. Even the workaholic that goes to school and still finds time to bake cookies for her kids' class has a special talent to share. (did ya catch that? she made cookies for school....that's her talent)

Or how about the family that's having another baby? Chances are, a package of diapers will cost you the same amount as that adorable outfit you want to buy. Sure, those diapers are going to get thrown away, but there's a near guarantee that they'll get worn whereas an outfit might sit in a closet unworn because the baby and the outfit didn't match the season.

Food pantries are emptying faster than they can be filled. I know someone who found a 10 for $10 sale on loaves of bread. Know what he did? He spent $30 on bread and dropped it off at the shelter.

Speaking of food pantries............if you donate at your church, why not reach out to the office staff and ask if they know someone benefiting and ask them if you can donate fresh fruits or veggies to the family. Pantries stock non-perishable items for a reason, but families still need the fresh stuff. (don't get me started on assistance programs, they're way overloaded and too many working poor don't qualify anyway)

A place to start? Craigslist has listings of people looking for things they need done. Me personally? Last year, when MSU was playing in a Florida bowl game, I was looking for someone coming down for the game anyway that was driving a truck and could bring a crib and bed down. I was willing to pay for their service and add in Disney tickets. I got NO TAKERS.

So, what's YOUR talent? What can you do TODAY that can help someone else today or tomorrow?

Monday, September 21, 2009

you know you're a parent when....

you have no problem asking the color, shape, and consistency of poop. Of course it takes a somewhat obsessive parent to actually be in the bathroom when it all happens. And one with a strong stomach, I might add.

I'm so proud of Sam. A few weeks ago, I had to go to CVS and get suppositories. He'd been withholding again and I got so upset and fed up with withholding and changing poopy pull-ups, I thought I had to do something "drastic."

That's when the sticker chart came to use. I love that he gets so excited about pooping. Nowadays he tells me how many he wants to go.....did you know there's a number called "thirty-teen"? No? Me either. I just tell him, "let's start with one."

Sure enough, he's staring me down and we hear the fateful "plop" in the toilet. And he squeals with delight "yay I pooped, no medicine."

As of tonight, his sticker chart is completely full. Three weeks of daily pooping. THREE WEEKS!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

You can't argue with FREE daycare

So many people think we're nuts for having moved back to Michigan with the current economic climate here. Especially without jobs.

But, you can't argue with free rent and daycare. Although, the rent's not really free. I personally do all our laundry, try to cook dinner at least one night a week (or we buy the $5 pizza from Little Caesar's), clean up the kitchen regularly, pick up things at the grocery store for the house.....lots of things. Let's not forget the general stress of moving back into your parents' home at 36 with two kids and no real job. I love my parents dearly, but I don't think any of us really expected us to be in this situation.

I've been looking for a job, had a few interviews, even got set up to sub for the county and for two local private schools. But, it's hard to look for a job that would take me out of the area since we do have free daycare right now. I mean, if we moved anywhere but here, then I'd have to find some way to pay for full-time care for Henry and half-day care for Sam. (and we all remember what it was like to find Sam care last year at this time he was going to school all day, I just needed after school) After talking to my friends about what they pay for care for two kids, I can pretty much guarantee up to $1000/month.

So, you can't argue with free daycare. Right now I can work or sub, my mom keeps the baby while Sam is at school and can get him off the bus mid-day.

I don't know when we'll be living together or where, but for right now, my plan is to stick around here for now.

Monday, September 14, 2009

I'm so happy with Sam

First....if you don't like hearing or reading about bodily functions....stop reading right now. Come back another day.

Okay, with that warning out of the way, I have to share that Sam is nearly half way to winning the war on constipation. Sure, we're still doing Miralax every day, but unlike previous attempts, he's now going every single day, on the potty without tears. My big boy has even abandoned the Elmo potty ring!

I need to be better about putting the Miralax in juice rather than milk and about giving it to him at lunch rather than bedtime, but neither of those have interfered with his progress.

Here's a picture of his chart from earlier in the week:

Of course, you have to know there are three more stickers there since this picture was taken on Thursday last week.

We have the chart and the stickers taped to the bathroom mirror so he can see it all the time.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Monday, September 7, 2009

All better mama, all better

Aside from a slight discoloration that will probably take another week to clear up completely, Sam's reaction/infection from the last vax is gone. Nine days of Keflex three times a day will do that I guess.

and we're making GREAT strides in the potty training realm. In fact, accidents are a rarity now. The best news on this front? SEVEN (7) days in a row of pooping. Last time that happened was probably 2 years ago when he first went on Miralax. But I'm not changing a diaper and he's ASKING to go poop.

We started a reward chart today. I told him each time he got to 7 days in a row, we'd go for ice cream. (the local ice cream shop has soy ice cream) If he goes three weeks (there's 21 boxes on the chart), we'll go to the zoo.

Tomorrow is the first day of school. Yes, I'm going to try and follow the bus to the school. Not sure if he's the first or last getting on the bus. Oh, get this.......his class is the only one on the bus. The district actually has a special bus for all the special ed pre-k kids since they're program is a bit different in time from the regular classes. So, he'll get to ride the bus with the kids from his class and ONLY the kids from his class.

Henry cut his first tooth! It came in on Saturday, just in time for Pompou's (FIL) birthday. He's been eating solids for a couple months now. We started with rice cereal, then moved on to fruits and veggies. I'm making it again. In fact, aside from prunes, he's only had homemade baby food. Peas, green beans, squash, and peaches. I have zucchini, cauliflower, yellow squash, pumpkin (canned) in the freezer to be tried.

I did go ahead and buy bananas, mangoes, and pears in Gerber because they were on sale and my pears didn't turn out right and bananas don't last long around here and mangoes tend to be on the expensive side. Oh and since I really didn't want Sam too close to them, I bought sweet potatoes in the jar as well.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Vax reactions

This was his leg in July. Kid never reacted to a single vax until we moved.

This is his arm currently, from a chicken pox vaccination 6 days ago.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Secondary uses for baby items

I've gotten inspired lately on how to use baby items that I won't be using after Henry. This is due to Rachel Ray's "double duty" segment on her show. You know, like the lady whose husband uses his drill to help turn the handle on the juicer or the mom that uses chip clips to close off the end of tortillas for her kids.

So, what would I do with...........
Travel formula containers? Use them for small snacks for my toddler/preschooler. Things like M&Ms, mini-marshmallows, Cheerios, Coco Puffs, Gerber Puffs and goldfish. I'd use this over a small bowl because it would offer my child a choice of what he might want, plus I wouldn't have to carry two separate containers for my infant and preschooler. Puffs in one spot, Cheerios another, and M&Ms another.

Take-n-Toss containers? At under $4 for 7 bowls with lids, sure you can pitch them, but these small bowls are great for other things! Perfect for school lunches or even Mom's lunch. Need a small container of dish soap for the office or for a road trip? How about using one for the water for water colors? or even for tempera paint? (hey did you know that if you mix powder tempera paint with Dawn dish soap you can make washable finger paint or regular paint depending on the consistency?) And, they're cheaper than the name brand reusable lunch containers and come in cooler colors.

Diaperbags? Use them to keep a change of clothing for the kids in the car, with all the internal pockets, you can even keep toothbrushes, dry snacks, individually wrapped wet wipes, small bags (like small trash can bags on a roll.....scented ones for poop accidents), and a small blanket or two for the kids on late nights.

Old videos? Keep them handy, you might have visitors or grandchildren some day that fall in love with Teletubbies all over again.

Baby blankets? Cut them up for scrap material for any kind of item, maybe a patchwork quilt to follow them to camp or college. (same goes for clothing items you can't part with)

Bottles? Donate them to a battered women's shelter or a church. Throw in a few packs of brand-new nips though. (liners too if they're the drop-in kind)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

For my 36th birthday

I have decided to "donate" my birthday this year! I've posted about my friend Amy's little boy, Jack before.

Jack is an angel (literally and figuratively). Jack had congenital heart defects and passed away October 31, 2008, just two weeks shy of his third birthday.

I mentioned the Golf 4 Jack outing on August 29, 2009 in Ann Arbor, MI before. The outing is just two days after my birthday weekend.

I think often of Jack's family, even more now that we're back in Michigan. With the wonderful world of the internet and Facebook, I am trying to raise money for Jack's foundation.

You can donate to the cause by clicking here Jack's Cause for Andrea's birthday.

Monday, August 10, 2009

I'm so frustrated!

The two products that were ESSENTIAL in getting Sam the right amount of fiber, protein and fruit in his diet are no longer being made.

Nestle is no longer producing Juicy Juice Peach! Though I can say so far Welch's Naturals Peach has been an acceptable replacement in Sam's eyes. (not mine, though, not fruity enough for me)

Abbott Nutrition is no longer making the PediaSure NutriPals bars! These were lifesavers in getting Sam to eat anything at school! His teacher knew if he flat out refused to eat hot lunch or even whatever I sent him, that she could always give him water and a NutriPals bar.

If I'm not mistaken, wasn't there a HUGE ad campaign for the bars? They were great for protein for my chicken-only kid.

Both companies apologize for any "inconvenience". Hmmmmm, can ya suggest something else for me to try?

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Potty training successes

Really, truly, potty training is all about how ready your kid is. Even if it's after his 4th birthday! Since Sam's birthday a few weeks ago, we've been hitting PTing hard. And just this past week, I bought big boy underwear. Little tighty-whities! Okay, they're not white....they have Diego, Thomas, and Lightning McQueen on them, but still. I swear there's nothing cuter than seeing your kid wearing underwear and realizing you don't have buy a pack of pull-ups every week. (well, at least not until the next child is ready to PT)

Sam's had 2 accident free days this week. We've gone out and run errands and he's gone potty at Target, Sam's, the ENT's office, Grandma's house and only had one accident at Michelle's house.

I've been most worried about his delays and thinking, he won't be able to tell me that he has to go.

Well, once again, my worries proved unnecessary. Three times this morning, he said, "mama I wanna go pee." TOTALLY amazing.

We are still using pull-ups, but it's just at nap and bed time. Completely normal from what I understand. And, he's waking up dry after those times.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

He's come a LONG way in the last 2.5 years!

I recorded this 5 minute video of Sam talking to me and Henry the other day. Not bad for a kid who couldn't even say "mama" at 18 months of age. I am so proud of him I could cry. In fact, there are days when I do cry thinking back to those days of the single tone "babbling" that we hear from Henry at 5 months.

Past updates
February 12, 2009

December 24, 2008

October 23, 2008

September 13, 2008

May 23, 2008

March 31, 2008

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

My new favorite blog

This is my new favorite blog to read:

Recruiter Uncensored

VISIT. She's even from my hometown! LOADS of great information.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Prayers for Elliott

My friend Christy's little boy Elliott needs your prayers. He went to the pedi with a slight fever on Thursday, July 23. She though it might be an ear infection. Something didn't feel righ to the pedi. MRI and CT Scan revealed Elliot either has a Wilm's Tumor or Neuroblastoma that is the size of a football on one of his kidneys. Removal is not yet possible due to his high BP. A biopsy has been scheduled. Elliott is 16 months old.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Golf for Jack


I know Jack's mommy through an online mommy group. If you golf and are in SE MI, consider golfing for Jack! Or just make a donation. :)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Why 3?

"things come in threes"

"leaves of three, leave it be"

"I'm going to count to 3!"

and on the popular show, "Charmed" they had the "power of three"

So why 3? I'm guessing because that's the magic number of things that we can remember at one time. When does the magic three come into our lives? Actually it's very early in life.

In fact, I just realized that even feeding an infant is about every three hours.

But I'm more thinking about shows like Oobi, Dora, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Special Agent Oso......the preschool shows. Everything is done in three steps. Do you know WHY?

Because when evaluating young children, they look to see if the child can do a sequence of three things, both related and unrelated.

I tested this out with Sam yesterday. He wanted to play, but we were at the doctor's (more on that in a minute). So I told him, "doctor, lunch, play". After telling him 5 or 6 times......I asked him, "we're at the doctors, what's next?" He replied "lunch!"

He's come a long way!

4-year-old Check up stats:
Weight: 36 pounds, putting him back in the 75th percentile since BIRTH
Height: 39.5 inches, putting him in the 50th percentile where he's always been

Physically doctor said he's perfectly fine, glad to know he got the tubes last week and they split up the vaccinations for us. I was positive Sam would cooperate for a needle in each leg, but not two in each. So, when I take Henry for his 6-month check up, Sam will get his other two.

Developmentally, we're calling it PDD due to speech. He'll be going to school here in Mason in the fall. When I have more information on what he's going to be getting there, I'll revisit doing speech through the insurance company in addition to school.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Paying it foward...........

I've been the giver and receiver a few times on this.....for example, when a friend lost her job and her husband was trying to work three to support their four kids, I picked up her baby shower gift, along with fixings for a full meal and a grocery gift card. I purposely asked her not to open the card until I left. I didn't get a half mile down the road before she called me.

Three weeks later, when Eric and I were having a tough time and I found out I was pregnant with Henry, I found a card with a grocery gift card in it, it was from a different friend.

Paying it forward doesn't always come in terms of finances......when I was trying to get the apartment ready to move and Eric was in MI, a friend stopped by to visit. It was time for me to get Sam, but I didn't really want to have to take Henry with me. She stayed an extra 30 minutes so I could leave Henry at home.

Today? today I got home from a trip to the in-laws to visit Eric and I got on my mommy board. I had a message from a friend asking if I got a package. She's in Switzerland, but she had paid attention to something I recently said about shoes. That I buy for comfort, not appearance.

With a 6th lumbar.....that has my pelvis cocked weirdly, I tend to stick with rubber soled shoes and I can never find anything cute.

So, when I was modeling my outfit for an interview I had (no didn't get the job), there was a comment about my shoes. I wasn't offended, I know they're not cute, bt I like them. ANYWAY....later there was a question about size of shoes (because now that makes sense).

And today, I got a new pair of Earth Origins shoes in the mail.

SUPER comfortable, TOTALLY adorable.

I am *in love* with these shoes.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Sammy's tubes

Sitting with Daddy before surgery.

Sitting with Mama before surgery.
Surgical hats for Sammy and the "twins".

Post-op with Daddy, Sammy was NOT a happy camper at this point.

Everything went really well this morning. We arrived at the hospital at 6:00 and were back home by 9:30! I didn't think it would go so fast, in fact, when they came to get us just 15 minutes after I left him in the OR, I thought something was wrong. Nope, they were just finished is all.

His right ear was a bit worse than the left, but nothing to worry about. He was incredibly cranky coming out of the anesthesia, but once we had him out of the hospital, he was better.

He came home, played on his Leapster for a bit, had some lunch, then passed out on the couch.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Sammy's getting tubes tomorrow

Eric will probably think I'm crazy, but yes, I'll take the camera.

It's been a long haul to get to the point of Sam getting tubes in his ears. We were without good insurance for a long time, then the ENT we saw in Orlando wasn't sure tubes would help. Now, though, the ENT here in Lansing thinks it will do a lot of good.

So, Sam gets his first set of tubes tomorrow morning. Not sure how all that will go, but I can assure you that my baby will be asking for his chobby all the way to the hospital and all the way home. Glad I found a comparable juice to give him since Juicy Juice is no longer making their peach flavor. (Welch's has a new small bottle of Welch's Naturals called Peach Planet)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


Things I'm adjusting well to:
No ants, cockroaches, or termites.
No geckos.
No screaming kids behind the apartment at 10:30 on a school night.
No wet carpet.
Cool nights for open windows, even in July.
Nice deck/patio to sit on any time of the day.
Parking in a garage.
Two vcrs at my mom's house, one to play and one to rewind

Things I'm not adjusting well to:
7-digit dialing on the telephone, I keep forgetting I don't have to do that here.
Having to decide if it's warm enough on a summer day for Sam to be in the water.
Not having all my clothes together in one closet.
Keeping my children quiet until at least 8:00 in the morning. HA! Not when they're up at 6!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Dapper Snappers

Please vote for Dapper Snappers!!! click here

These are the COOLEST thing in the world! I need to get some for Sam for school this fall.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Salsa chicken....this stuff is GOOOOOOOOOOOOD

After reading RAVE reviews from my online friends on this recipe.....I decided to try it.

2 large chicken breasts, corn, black beans, and salsa all thrown in a crockpot.

It was freaking AWESOME and makes a TON of food. We each had the equivalent of two large tortillas full (I used Tostitos Scoops) and I have two freezer containers full as well.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

My friend needs your help

I belong to a few online groups and feel extremely close to the women I've come to know since becoming a mommy. An online friend, Jenny, and her husband, Eddy, were due to have twins in February, but they arrived much too early in December.

Genevive and Lillian were born December 29, 2008. Genevive became suddenly ill and passed away on January 1, 2009. Lillian is thriving at almost 6 months.

Jenny and Eddy are asking for help purchasing a headstone for their sweet Genevive's grave. Jenny blogs about her experiences with the girls at http://delekatala.blogspot.com/

I feel so lucky to have two healthy boys, any help you can give this family would be greatly appreciated. Donations can be made at Genevive's headstone.


Tuesday, June 9, 2009

More on the Apnea

Got the results.....actually, I got them right before we moved and well, just haven't had time to update.

The pedi's nurse called and said "mild obstructive apnea" and that since we were moving, we could wait a month or so before getting him into an ENT in Michigan.

I got the paperwork and it says "moderate obstructive sleep apnea" and that we should see an ENT as soon as possible.

Well, we still had the move to consider. Now that things have calmed down a little, I called an ENT that my mom has seen (since there are no pediatric ENTs in our network up here). Henry's going on June 24th for his appointment and at that point we'll find out what we'll be doing for his apnea.

He's still incredibly congested. One of the pedis back home thinks his nasal passages are inflamed or narrow. He's not showing signs of needing suctioning, but you can hear his difficulty breathing all the time.

So, little man will be getting his 4 month shots on the 23rd with the new pedi (my old one) and seeing the specialist on the 24th.

Friday, June 5, 2009

It's been almost a month

Sorry it's been almost a month since I last updated. Well, the move occurred and we're trying to settle in.

Sam is still adjusting to being an hour from his daddy. Every bedtime is a bit of a struggle because Eric used to lay with him. Plus, now it's "sshhhh the baby is sleeping" since we all share a room. But Henry pays him back in the early morning hours by getting up at 6/6:30 every day.

Sam has a few new phrases:
I can't
No, papa
No, nana
no, x, you out now
wook at me (look at me, because that's what I always tell him to listen)
I want please x (rather than I want x please)

And, of course he found Nana's stash of Teletubbies videos. He just LOVES them. Henry really likes them too. It's a nice way to entertain both of them so I can get some "unpacking" done. And by that I mean, going through boxes, trying to find everything.

Henry is SO much more vocal than Sam was at this age, which we knew would be the case. He's a very happy baby and only fusses when he's tired. Nana has been a really great rocker for him. He's almost to the point that he'll only go to sleep for her. Sometimes, though, he just wants his mama.

Henry goes for his 4 month check up on the 22nd and Sam will go for his 4 year check up on the 23rd next month.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Sleep study test

Original blog: Apnea?

Took Henry for a sleep study last night. Actually called on Tuesday and got him right in. Didn't get the office I was hoping for, but at least the office we went to wasn't too far away. And I lucked out again, given that Eric is in Michigan right now, that my friend Ashley was able to stay with Sam overnight.

Little man did very well. He actually fell asleep on the way to the sleep center, stayed asleep during the hook up and pretty much through the night except to eat twice.

The tech that was covering Henry's study was AWESOME! He had given up doing these studies on adults to work with kids. He said that Henry was the best baby he'd done in a very long time. They had 6 kids under 2 in the center last night and he said Henry was by far the easiest to hook up. I think the fact that he slept through the whole thing helped a lot.

The only challenge we had was that the oxygen monitor thingy was too big on his toe and kept coming off. He even tried to use that sticky ace bandage stuff......Henry got that off the first time, but not the second.

Then, just about when the tech was going to come in and wake us up, Henry went into a dream sleep phase at 5:50, so he let him sleep through it (based on dr's orders). He came in at 6:20, I was back home at 7:15, just in time to get Sam ready for school.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Ikea's Trofast system

is the greatest toy organizer that is within my budget. I gotta say I do love it. And now that I'm moving back to Mason, I'm trying to get Sam in the habit of only one bin out at a time. A few before and after pictures and a video of what Trofast can do for a little boy who has WAY TOO MANY toys.

Before picture:

Before video:

After pictures:

Saturday, April 25, 2009

As sad as I am to be moving......

there are actually some things I'm looking forward to about being back in Michigan:

  • Sam gets to see snow. We've been home at Christmas and sadly, the poor kid didn't get to see it.
  • Sam will have a nice quiet street to ride his bike on, not a parking lot.
  • Learning to use my sewing machine! YAY!
  • Scrapbooking with my mom and friends
  • Seeing all my old friends.....too many short visits over the past five years
  • Actually moving somewhere that we know people
  • Going for walks in an area I feel safe in
  • Both the boys will get to know all their grandparents and their great-grandparents
  • Getting to attend family events and not having to worry about the possibility of plane tickets

Friday, April 24, 2009

We are NOT separating or divorcing

Obviously there's a reason for this post. I want to make it very clear that Eric and I are not going through a separation or a divorce. We are, however, making plans to be geographically apart for a temporary time period.

This time apart will allow both of us to focus on the major task at hand......getting new jobs. It would be no different than if he had gone to MI last year to work, sending money home. Or if we had a house that needed to be sold when a new job offer came up across the state.

You do what you have to for your family as a whole and the members as individuals. They say absence makes the heart grow fonder, I believe that.

When we moved to Florida, we had no support system. When things got rough, we had to rely on each other completely. That has its good and bad points. Moving back separately will allow us to have that support system we each so desperately needed and didn't have.

So, NO Eric and I are not getting a divorce, we are not getting separated, we have simply made a decision that is best for us as individuals and our boys.

Our ultimate goal is to have decent jobs in a few months so that we can all be together again. We love each other very much and we've each sensed a big weight being lifted off us. Granted, there is a brand new level of stress, but at least we'll be working toward a common goal.

Whether you agree with our decision isn't important, it's our decision to make. We just ask that you provide the love and support you would if we were living together.

Eric will be living with his parents, the boys and I will be living with my parents. Again, this is the best decision for us at the present time.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


We're moving back "home". It's a sad day at our house, though I'm certain all the grandparents are happy that we'll have Sam and Henry there for them to see more frequently.

This will be our fourth move in the 6 years we've been together, scratch that, it will be the fourth in the 5 years we've been married. We moved to Florida in 2004, just 24 hours after getting married. We moved from a 1-bedroom to a 2-bedroom in 2006 just before Sam's first birthday. Then we moved from a 2-bedroom to a 3-bedroom in 2008 just before getting pregnant with Henry. Now we're moving back to Michigan.

My boys are Florida natives.............poor kids won't know what hit them come snow time this winter. Henry LOVES to be ultra-warm, but Sam gets overheated really easily.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

New AAP recommendations on car seats!!!

New recommendations from AAP on car sats

Keep your toddler in a rear-facing car seat until age 2 (not 1)

Lori O’Keefe

New research indicates that toddlers are more than five times safer riding rear-facing in a car safety seat up to their second birthday. Following are some safety tips for car seat use:

All infants should ride rear-facing in either an infant car seat or convertible seat.

If an infant car seat is used, the infant should be switched to a rear-facing convertible car seat once the maximum height (when the infant’s head is within 1 inch of the top of the seat) and weight (usually 22 pounds to 32 pounds) have been reached for that infant seat as suggested by the car seat manufacturer.

Toddlers should remain rear-facing in a convertible car seat until they have reached the maximum height and weight recommended for the model, or at least the age of 2.

To see if your car seat is installed properly and to find a certified passenger safety technician in your area, visit www.seatcheck.org or www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cps/cpsfitting/index.cfm. You also can call 866-SEATCHECK (866-732-8243) or 888-327-4236.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Truly AMAZING developmental update

This is my blog update from a year ago. He was seeing a speech therapist four days a week, 30-minute sessions through Early Intervention. Ms. J had been with him since June 07, maybe July 07 (we'd switched therapists by then) and I had just heard "mama" for the first time in January (before I started the blog).

http://meyouandduckytoo.blogspot.com/20 ... gress.html

Here's where he is NOW, attending a full-day, all week special education pre-K program at the local elementary school.

:) we can have a conversation about all of his new animals (a friend gave him two buckets of Animal Planet animals--barnyard and safari)
:) he's using phrases like "i don't know" and "mama want some?"
:) he cleans up when asked most of the time and sings the clean up song while doing it

he will sing voluntarily:
:) Old MacDonald-----he says "e-i-e-i-o moo farm mama"
:) Itsy-bitsy spider-----he says "spidey mama?"
:) Head Shoulder Knees and Toes-----he says "hea, nonos, nees, toes"
and my fave?
:) he sings the "Uma Sleep" song from Oobi to Henry every night (of course changing it to "Henry Sleep")

Any tips for getting any of this on video would be GREATLY appreciated. As soon as he sees a camera in my hand, he wants it, so I don't get many videos of him anymore.

He's going to back to underwear for school starting next week when we're back to school, he's been using the potty pretty much all day at school.

He got his shirt off almost all by himself tonight (I helped him wiht the first sleeve).

We still have the paci, BUT we went to a playdate today and he left both of his puppies in the car and gave up the paci before even getting out of the car seat. He's letting go of his security items!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Fave pics of the week

This is how he prefers to sleep. Swaddled in one blanket with it up around his face, then a heavier blanket on top....all in the comfort of his boppy.
Three nights of post 10:30 bedtimes + 4 days without a nap or rest time = one tired Sammy

Yes, he climbed in all by himself. Never had a problem with him climbing out of his own crib, just in. Now I really have to make sure the door is closed at naptime.

Sam and his "first" Easter egg. They colored eggs at school, Sam brought three home. He did a fairly good job of peeling it, but then refused to eat it. (though he did eat a small part of the yolk)