Friday, October 26, 2012

a little boy and a green chair

i finally got a chance to use the beautiful green chair i received for my birthday.

retro blue sweater scored at a consignment sale.  check
cute monkey hat.  check.
mama's most adorable love bug.  check.

more teething woes

i know moms whose children experienced little to no symptoms with teething.  LUCKY!!

and then there are moms like me, on the other end of the spectrum, whose little ones have an incredibly rough time with teething.

for the past few weeks, our bud has been teething pretty bad (his top teeth coming in), but the last few days have proved to be ruthless on a whole new level.

some of what we've been experiencing:
  • refusal to take naps - for the past few days, he's absolutely fought going down for his morning nap.  usually, he'll scream the second i enter his room, and even when i try to distract him (look out the window, read, sing), as soon as i place him in his crib, he cries and cries until i finally give up and get him.  today, he's refused to take any naps, and i KNOW he's tired, but i'm at a complete loss about what to do.
  • refusal to eat solids - from what i've read, this is common because eating solids is more painful.  supposedly, his appetite for solids will come back after the teeth are in, but it's been a couple of weeks now and i'm afraid he'll regress and only want milk again going forward.
  • cold-like symptoms - major congestion and runny nose are the only symptoms, and it took me a while to realize he didn't have a cold; these symptoms must be related to teething.  the congestion makes it challenging for him to drink milk, so i'm definitely feeding him more often.
  • major crankiness and general unhappiness - of course the lack of sleep is making him extremely cranky, and it seems nothing can console him.  he doesn't want his toys, he doesn't want to eat, he doesn't want any teething toys, rings, biscuits...anything.  i hear him chew on his blanky while in the crib, and will often find him on his tummy, butt in the air, face into the corner of the crib, blanky in mouth, just gnawing on it or his hand.   i know he's in pain, and it breaks my heart that there's nothing i can do about it. 
  • teeth grinding - this is a horrible sound, and it makes me realize just how much pain he must be in to feel the need to grind his teeth/gums together.
  • wanting to be held constantly - on the one hand, he's more cuddly, and i LOVE that.  but it's difficult to get anything done when i'm constantly holding him.  problem is, the second i put him down, he starts screaming and crawling after me.  so. sad.
i've tried the hyland's teething tablets, and they proved useless.  just today a friend told me about humphrey's teething tablets, so i'm going to pick some up and hope and pray they alleviate even a fraction of the pain he's experiencing. 

i've also heard it gets worse when the molars come in, but i just can't imagine it being worse than right now.  i guess he could be waking up multiple times at night, and that is the one thing he hasn't been doing, thank GOD.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

9 month update

i've been working on this blog post for the past couple of weeks since our bud turned 9 months old.  it's been a hectic month to say the least.

well, a lot has changed in two weeks.  biggest development - three days ago, he pulled himself up for the first time.  which means he's that much closer to walking, and makes me wonder what happened to my little baby???

undoubtedly, one of the most amazing things to witness/experience as a first-time-mom is how quickly the first year goes, and the changes their little bodies undergo in such a short period of time.  at this point, there seem to be new developments almost every single day.  no longer do i think of him as my little baby; instead he's now my little man.  it's surreal to think that a few short months ago he couldn't sit unassisted, and now not only is he mobile, he seems eager to start walking.

for the first time this week, i noticed how big his feet have gotten; not that they're abnormally big, but they went from looking like little baby feet to looking longer and a little less chubby.  they still get lots of kisses, those toes.  :)

and that hair of his is out of control!  really don't want to cut it before he's a year old, but i don't know i'll have a choice.  it's already in his eyes, and i constantly have to sweep it to the side or keep it shoved under a hat.

and what happened to my snuggle-bug?  now that he can move and explore, he's quickly discovering his independence, and that means getting impatient when mama wants to love on him.  he just wants to get down and get going!  and while i know that's the natural next step, i already miss my baby-baby.


stats -
height: 29" - 60th percentile, so pretty much how we've been tracking
weight: 20 lbs, 3 oz, 50th percentile, also same as before

what's new...and some of his favorite things -
  • crawling - i can't have my back turned for a second because he's a speedy little crawling machine, and i never quite know where i'll find him.  his favorite forbidden place to go is zoe's pen; the second he sees it's been accidentally left open, he makes a bee-line for it, and gets quite perturbed if i get to it first.  he also absolutely refuses to be on his back, which makes diaper changes interesting; let's just say i've become very fast and creative about keeping him entertained during said diaper changes.
  • standing up- since he started pulling himself up three days ago, he's perfecting this ability on anything and everything he can reach.  trash cans, ottomans, dishwasher (his favorite), bookshelves, knobs on dressers, etc.  there have been the occasional tumble, but he's a good sport about it, and it certainly hasn't deterred him at all!   
  • talking - he's always been pretty vocal, but in the last week or so, his sounds have been sounding more and more like actual words and phrases.  he also says 'oh', 'babba', 'ah-ya, ya' a lot, and makes lots of smacking, clicking and rolling sounds.  from what i've been reading about baby's speech development at this age, their understanding of words far outpaces their ability to use them.  so a few weeks ago we started a baby sign language class with him, in the hopes that we can learn to communicate with him long before he can actually speak.  we'll see how that goes, because it really will depend on how much time we spend repeating/teaching him the signs.
  • reading books with texture or sound - i've been astounded to see that he remembers buttons that make noise (on books or other toys), and uses his little thumb to repeatedly press them.  he also loves turning the pages on books when we're reading them.
  • watching older kids - he and i just returned from visiting my sister and 2 year old nephew luke in dallas, and he was fascinated with his big cousin luke.  he had a perma-grin on his face the entire time...well, except when cousin luke squeezed him a little too hard and tried riding him like a horsey.  :)
  • playing with zoe - first thing each morning, we go downstairs and look for zoe, and when he spots her, his entire face lights up.  they spend lots of time crawling around after each other, and zoe's always trying to get in the extra lick.
  • stink-face - he's perfected what we've deemed 'stink-face'.  no rhyme or reason as to why he makes it, but it's hilarious
  • studying faces/expressions - not just on kids, but something he's started doing just in the last couple of days, especially when we're reading and i'm making an animal, etc sound, is to turn around and look up at me very quizzically as if he's trying hard to figure out how i'm making the sound.  
  • high-five - i can't believe i forgot about this, since it's our favorite new thing he does.  i started working on getting him to do the high-five, and after a few days of trying, he totally got it.  so fun!!
  • extends arms - he's just starting to extend his arms when i say 'up'.  they kind of come up to the cute.
  • wants mama more - i'm not sure if this is related to his teething woes or just part of his development at this age, but i certainly don't mind.  :)
  • gives kisses - baby kisses are the best!  mouth wide open, slobbery, he leans forward or just waits for mama to plant one on him.  perfect.  

challenges -
  • waking at night - technically, he wakes up around 5:30/6:00 each morning, i nurse him, and he usually goes back down for another hour or so.  maybe my wanting him to sleep clear until 7 or 7:30 is asking too much (especially when he goes down at 7pm for the night), but i can be hopeful, right?
  • going down for naps - this is a fairly new development, but as of couple of weeks ago, he really resists going down for naps, especially his morning one (9:15ish).  he's visibly tired, but will start crying the second i even enter his room, and screams when he's placed in his crib.  sometimes, he never falls asleep  and i eventually pick him up. other times he fusses for a good 30-45 min. before finally falling asleep.  i doubt he's already outgrowing one of his naps, but i'm at a loss for what's going on.  
  • stopped eating solids - we were on a roll with solids (well, pureed solids, anyway), introducing new foods, when out of the blue a couple of weeks ago, he refused to eat anything but milk.  i try ever day, hoping it'll be the day he's rediscovered his appetite for something other than milk, but at best, i'm able to get in two spoonfuls before he's done.  and by done, i mean spitting it out, mashing in with his hands and putting it all over his face and in his hair.  and heaven forbid i try to sneak in another bite - that's when the tears begin.
  • teething - THIS IS HORRIBLE!!  i had heard horror stories about teething...and it really is that bad.  i know some lucky some babies don't do much teething, but our bud was not that fortunate. the day before he turned 9 months old, his first top tooth sprouted, and according to his doctor at his 9 month well checkup, he's got three more on the way.  he's obviously in pain, but doesn't like teething rings, toys or biscuits of any kind.  the only thing i've seen him really aggressively bite down on is his blankie.     maybe the teething is to blame for everything else i noted above.  OH, and he's grinding his teeth!!  it's an absolutely horrible sound, and from what i've read and talked to the advice nurse about, it could be teething related or just him discovering a new sensation.  either way, there's not really anything we can do about it.
  • playtime with kiddos his age - now that the weather's turned and he's becoming more active, i'm even more feeling the need to get him around other kids close to his age.  not only is it vital for his social development, but mama needs some time out with other mommies as well!  problem is, most of my closest friends live 20+ miles away, which just isn't practical most days, especially when trying to work around his two naps and dealing with rush hour traffic.  so i guess it's now time to start looking into local mommy groups.  not that i don't want to, but making new friends in my 30's isn't necessarily something i thought i'd be doing.  it's exciting, but also requires stepping out of my comfort zone.  but i guess that's a longer topic for another day...


some pics from his cousin audrey's 1st birthday part a couple of weeks ago, pre his standing up stage.  :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

the cutest little pumpkin

yesterday our little man took his first trip to the pumpkin patch.  it almost didn't happen since he has a cold and i could only find one pumpkin patch open during the week in vancouver.  but since it looks like the nice weather is due to end after today, it was very important to me we squeeze in what will definitely become an annual family tradition.

joe's place farm wasn't the biggest or best pumpkin patch we've ever been too, but it was perfect for what we needed.  we got there with one hour to spare before they closed, and my goal was two-fold: get some fun photos of our bud, and spend some quality time together as a fam on a gorgeous fall day.  i'd say we accomplished both.  :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

a hood river birthday

a couple of days ago, two dear friends whisked me away for a day of birthday celebration.  yes, almost a month late, due to scheduling conflicts, but we could NOT have asked for a more beautiful day!  it was close to 80 and sunny, but still a crispness in the air that spoke of autumn.

we explored the fruit loop in hood river, an incredibly scenic drive thru the valley's orchards, farmlands and small communities, and made a few stops at farms along the way.  we enjoyed the bounty of the area, and agreed we are incredibly blessed to live in this part of the country.

the day was topped off with dinner at the sixth street bistro in downtown hood river, and it was definitely a meal worth mentioning!  the curry, artichoke dip appetizer was enough to ensure our return.  :)  all in all, a spectacular day made all the more special because of the ladies i spent it with.

{old farm dog who didn't move a muscle} 

{best part of the day: this BEAUTIFUL rocker found at one of the farms; sarah and tams decided to gift it to me when i couldn't stop fawning over it - a birthday gift i won't ever forget and CAN'T WAIT to start using it for photo shoots!}


{amazing swing, although we never got our turn on it because these kids were swing hogs, haha!}

{...and the incredible curry artichoke dip.  Y-U-M!} 

Monday, October 8, 2012

the progression of a stink-face

a few weeks ago our little man starting making what we termed the 'stink-face'. 

we're not sure what brings it started the day he tried peas for the first time, but now it comes on when he's tired, excited, frustrated, hungry or just because.

and while it's not the most attractive look on him, we think it's hilarious!  just as long as it goes away before he goes to school.  :)