Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Years Baby

As the year 2006 comes to an end, we have one great miracle to thank the Lord for. Our precious little Elijah Joseph is home with his family. I am very happy to put the year behind us, as 2006 did bring us our baby boy, but there are a lot of experiences that I would like to forget. I look forward to the year to come, watching all three of my children grow and thrive.

Video of Eli trying to smile, he seems confused as to what his Mommy wants him to do. I realize that I sound like a wacko, but it if makes my baby happy, who cares!

Monday, December 25, 2006

The Five Days of Christmas

We had a wonderful Christmas this year. We spread the holiday over several days, so all of our family was able to get their "kid fix" w/o Eli and the girls getting so overwhelmed. I am so thankful that the good Lord allowed us to spend Christmas with all three of our wonderful children.

Day One- Grandma Phyliss and Pa's house

The girls had a fun time at the birthday party for baby Jesus. We had a pizza party with plenty of cake, cookies, and soda in little tea cups. The favorite gifts were Kaitlyn- Ariel wedding set, Genny- spinning princess doll, and Eli- Mr. Grinch from Uncie Nic (b/c they look so much alike) and diapers (already put to good use and gone).

You would think they'd be happier with all the presents they have to open. Genny is just being the typical 3 yo, pouting b/c I made her take this picture.

Cousins Kelly and Marc

Kaitlyn with her Ariel wedding set. She loves to play bride and the sweetheart.

Genny with her dancing princess doll. She loves to spin the little doll on the furniture.

Eli the Grinch, he's so not impressed

Christmas Day Two

Paul and Marie's house (Shawn's parents)
We went out for a big pancake breakfast at IHOP Friday morning. After the girls were good, full, and all covered in maple syrup, we went to Shawn's parents house to open gifts. Favorite gifts were: Kaitlyn- makeup case, Genny- Thomas the train set, Eli- red tissue paper. The funniest part of the morning was Genny opening her clothes. She ripped open the box, threw the tissue paper and clothes out, and squealed in her little Mickey mouse voice "You forgot the toy in this box".

Eli getting comfy on the couch

Genny with her train rock loader set. She added it her big train table she got from (Gumpa) Santa Christmas Day.

Kaitlyn with her big make-up case. She loved getting all dolled up (I won't comment on what she looked like after her 5 y/o beauty treatment)

Eli's still not impressed with his gifts

Genny looking for her toy after opening the clothes box

Eli- "Did my mother just put something on my head"

"Oh no, she didn't"

"Ok guys, this is just getting ridiculous. My parent's definitely need a new hobby"

Day 5, Christmas Day

At our home with Grandma Becky, Gumpa, Uncie Mike
We had a nice relaxing Christmas day at home. I cooked a full Christmas dinner from recipes I found online and everything turned out wonderful. Of course I made way too much food and just threw out the final leftovers (after New Years day). Everything was very tasty, we all ate too much, but I am so looking forward to ham & bean soup. Favorite gifts were: girls- princess tea set, Kaitlyn- interactive dancing princess Genevieve doll & Nintendo DS, Genny- huge Thomas the train set w/ table & Thomas Aquadoodle mat, Eli- Pampers (already poo'ed on all of those too).
I unfortunately didn't get any pictures of the beautiful table that (Gumpa) Santa made, but I do have video of the girls first going downstairs to see their train. Genny exclaimed "Howy Sh*t, Santa brought me my train". I was too tired to yell at her on the video (this was at 5:45 am), but it was kind of funny how excited she was. Kaitlyn was pretty glum in most the pictures b/c she didn't open her Santa gift until last. She finally cracked a huge gooofy grin when she opened her Nintendo DS game.
We had a great Christmas, but we were all ready for things to be done by Monday afternoon. Our two garbage cans were heaping with boxes and wrappings, our fridge packed full of leftover food, and the kids were exhausted from all the excitement. I am awaiting next year when I can have my whole family at my home for Christmas.

Kaitlyn looking pretty before Christmas dinner

Genny awaiting dinner, she already snuck a candy cane off the tree
Lots of tea cups for the girls to serve dishwater (I guess Sponge Bob did it)
Uncie Mike with his new hat and shirt. I didn't know he was *actually* going to wear the shirt...LOL, j/k Mike, it looks good on ya.
Gumpa in his bear hat

Kaitlyn's long awaited Nintendo DS

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

My little hams

I just had to share pictures of two of my littlest hams.

There aren't a whole lot of updates on the Eli front. We had another nice week at home w/o any extra appointments. Eli is still continuing on his slow and steady growth. He was 3200 grams this afternoon (7 lbs .8 oz), so he is hanging on to the 7# mark. The kids are anxiously awaiting their 5-days of Christmas, one of the joys of having a lot of family.

I want wish everyone a blessed Christmas and look forward to sharing pictures from our family.

A Bumbo Experience

We decided to try Eli in a bumbo seat today, and well, he sure didn't think too much of his new seat. The box says it is for babies 3-14 months, but it is definitely not meant for Eli size babies. Good thing we kept the box and receipt.

Of course I couldn't bring the seat back w/o letting my "big baby" try it out. The sad thing is Genny fits in the Bumbo better then Eli. Genny insisted she liked the new seat...goofy kid.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Baby update, by Elijah

Eli has some big news, so I thought I'd let him update his friends and family himself.

Hey guys, Guess what?

I'm 7 lbs!

Of pure cuteness!!!

:little baby laughs:

Ok, I can't laugh yet, but I do make the sweetest baby faces. I don't smile at Mommies face, she's still kind of fuzzy, but I love to make these big cheesy grins whenever I hear her voice. I crossed over the big 7 lb barrier yesterday. I was so big, 3184 grams (7 lbs .2 oz) this morning. I promised Mommy that I wouldn't start pooping and loose the weight I've worked so hard to put on.
I must be a good boy because Mommy didn't have to take me to any doctors this week. My friend Barb came and we exercised on Wednesday morning. They are watching my head shape because I really favor my left side. Mommy thinks it's because I can see better out of my right eye, so I like to keep that one on top. Luckily I am so light and little, so my favoritism to the left hasn't affected my head shape too much. I just have some more exercises to add to my to do list.
I don't have much more to update. My pal Barb said I did great with my exercises. I found that if I just keep smiling at the ladies they don't make me work too hard. My charm goes a long way with the ladies :)

Dance of the two Christmas princesses

The girls had their Christmas dance recital and it was too much to describe with words. We captured the evening on video, so I will try and add a link later.
I don't think either of the girls had a concept of what their "recital" was going to be. Kaitlyn freaked out when she saw all of the parents, but she did get up and dance once I sat in the front row so she could watch me the whole time. Genny, well she did her "I'm too cute for this" routine. I laughed so hard at her performance to where I had tears running down my face. Both of the girls worked hard on their tap and ballet routines (ok, Kaitlyn may have practised a bit more) and did such a great job. We celebrated with a pancake dinner at IHOP afterwards.

My dancing girls

Kaitlyn strikes a pose

Genny loving her Mommy

Too cute for words, so here's some pics!

Feeling up my hands

Daddy designed me another cute hat

Exploring my gums
Mom still thinks I'm a long ways from a tooth

Fighting stance

Yep, it's the return of "Eli the Elephant"

Baby Eli is so big!

My two favorite fingers to suck

Bath beauties

Kaitlyn's bee-hive
Little Genny-lu-who

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

The moment we've all been waiting for...

YES!! That's is a genuine, 100% purely sweet Elijah smile. I was tickling Eli's toes after his OT appointment this morning and he was so worn out from exercising that he just thought the toe tickles were the greatest thing in the world. Today is the first day that I can honestly say I have seen my son smile at me. It was the greatest feeling in the world. Despite all that we go through each week: appt after appt, therapy sessions, exercises, meds, many, many diaper changes, dealing w/ his finicky feeding pump, the stress of having a medically fragile child...this moment just made all those things fade into little nothings. My son knows his Mommy and he loves me...and yes, I am crying as I post this.
Eli is still pretty picky on who he gives his affection to. He only smiled the one time and since has been fussy the rest of the day. He tends to get pretty tired out on his exercise day, esp since he had dr appts on both Mon & Tues and we still have a synagis injection and nurse visit to look forward to on Fri. I know even though Eli can't see my face and see my smile, he knows that his Mommy loves him. The priceless picture I was able to take this morning will always be there to remind me of that.

Eli is sweet just the way he is, smiling from the inside :)

All of my precious first smiles

Kaitlyn (8 wks), Genny (9 wks), Eli (15 wks)

Gen & Eli are adjusted ages

Another day, another doctor (eye)

Tuesday was our fun day at the eye doctors. First we got to take Genny into her opthamologist. Her eyes had gotten a little worse since her exam last year. She is still very farsighted. Little kids are normally farsighted, and they allow up to a +2 in both eyes w/o being treated. Genny is a +8 in her right eye and +6.5 in her left eye. The eye doc was a little concerned about a stigmatism in her right eye, as that eye is getting progressively worse. She gave her a stronger prescription for her glasses and we got to go back in 3-months to see if her right eye gets stronger. If not, then we will discuss doing an eye patch and/or drops to try and strengthen her right eye. We had a lot of fun picking out new glasses for Miss Genny (note the sarcasm). Genny loves her rainbow glasses, but unfortunately they don't make that style anymore. So, the new glasses were either too big, too little, or too sloppy (a new phrase Genny made up for the occasion). We just decided to pick out a pink round frame similar to her old glasses, and well, she will just have to like them. The new glasses should be here in a week, so I'll post pics on how the new glasses look and go over with Miss Gen.
We got to spend Tuesday afternoon at Elijah's ROP doctor. We still don't have the go ahead to bring Elijah to the opthamologist. The ROP doc wants to watch Eli until his ROP has completely regressed. The good news is that Eli's retinas are developing normally now, meaning the laser surgery was successful. Eli is still on the dilating eye drops twice a day and he didn't want to wean him off them just yet. We get to go back to the ROP doc in another month.
I think the ROP doc keeps forgetting how old Eli really is b/c of how little he still looks. I was discussing how I was worried that Eli still wasn't really tracking or looking at faces. When Eli does try and focus, his eyes cross a ton. It only gets worse when he tires, and then he is always cross-eyed. The doc said that eye crossing is considered normal until 6-months of age (Eli is adjusted 3.5 mths). The fact that it is more dominant in the eye that we already know is weaker, his left eye b/c it actually developed plus disease and a ridge that was lasered off, and the fact that Eli does it all of the time he said was definitely something to watch. We got to make an appointment w/ the pediatric opthamologist specialist for 2-days after we see the ROP doc next month. So, both of my itty bits will be getting some new specs in another month and we will probably have two tiny pirates in our house. Genny seemed happy at the thought of her baby brother having glasses just like her. She said, he'll need really really little glasses.

Eli's a well-baby, 6-month appt

Eli's 6-mth appt with his pediatrician went well. It was pretty short and sweet since we are already working with alot of other specialists. Eli is still working his way up the growth grid. I just dread plotting him on those things b/c it creates excess worry when he doesn't follow the magical curve. Eli was 6 lbs 13 oz (he was almost 6 lbs 15 oz, little stinker lost 2 oz overnight), 20.25" in length and 15" head circumference. His head circumference is actually in the 3rd percentile (for adjusted age of 3 months 1 week) and height for weight is in the 3rd percentile as well. I think for Elijah, he is doing well.
The worst part of the appointment was the dreaded shots. Eli had to get 5 shots, plus his flu shot since he is now over 6-months old. It wasn't that terrible though, he screamed for a second and was comforted as soon as Mommy picked him up. My poor baby is so used to being poked, he still has his Synagis injection this Friday.
Afterwards the girls had their flu shots. That was not fun. Kaitlyn was so innocently sweet. She was so proud to sit up like a big girl on the table and didn't want to sit in Mommies lap. Then she got this worried look on her face when I held her arm straight...then the big shriek "OWWIE, *sniff* I DON'T LIKE SHOTS". Genny immediately started crying b/c she knew I was going to hold her down too. She got a shot in her leg and then refused to walk out of the office b/c of her big owwie. So, I got to be SuperMom again. I had Eli in his carrier on one arm, Genny in the other arm, feeding tube on my back, diaper bag on one elbow and Kaitlyn trying to hold on my fingers that were holding the baby carrier. Luckily the car was parked somewhat in the front b/c it the kids were darn heavy, very cranky and it was cold.
Eli's fun day didn't get to end there. We had to drive down to Children's hospital b/c the lab at our clinic didn't want to draw his blood. Well, poor little guy was so dehydrated and is getting so thin that his skins sags on his arms and legs. They couldn't find a decent vein to do his labs on. So, the tech decided that she was going to draw from the superficial veins on his scalp. She decided to go for a vein on his right side, and I wasn't even thinking, but Eli's neck is so tight to his left side. As soon as she got the needle starting to go in, Eli whipped his head back to the left, ripping out the needle and tape. Poor baby got a good size bruise on his head and he started shrieking. I calmed him down, but we still had to hold him down and try and draw from the other side of his head. At least his second poke was quick and efficient.
Despite all the drama and tears, I think we had a good appointment. We can rejoice that Eli's labs all came back normal. The kids got their flu shots and Eli didn't have any major reactions to his shots (other then a slight fever and being very sleepy after his eventful day). Please continue to pray that the kids can stay healthy and that the Lord will give Elijah strength to grow.

Just a little cranky