Friday, February 27, 2015

{Almost} 17 Months!

It's been a while since I've done an update post about the little boy. He'll be 17 months old in a couple weeks. I should probably wait and update then, but there's no guarantee I'll find the time to blog then. it goes!!

I can't believe how much he's changed in a year...and it's just flown by!!

Sweet snuggles in the morning with Daddy!

Vacuuming with Daddy! Lucky me!! ;)

He's ready to join the worship team like Daddy! :) {Am I sensing a Daddy theme here?? You can tell who this kid looks up to!}

Excited about his Valentine's gifts from his Granna! (wouldn't hold still for a good picture! Kids...!)

All bundled outside!

Silly selfies!

We love selfies!!

So funny!!

New Moves:
+ dancing! He sticks up elbow out to the side, almost like he's about to start square dancing. We call it "getting the wing up!" He stomps around, back and forth from side to side, and marches. He also twirls in circles. He LOVES music!
+ running! all over!!
+ attempting to dress and undress himself (obviously still requires assistance)
+ can climb onto the couch and climb off of just about anything (both on his tummy and on his bottom)

New Words:
+I can't even begin to document this!! I pretty much assume he can just say whatever he wants! He repeats just about everything we say. He can say all the colors, all the animal sounds, Mommy, Daddy, Brett (my brother), cat, dog, Elmo, Bert, Ernie, Cookie, Grover, (sensing a theme there?) cracker, jacket, smoothie, coffee, Bible, God, bubbles, car, movie, books, fish, duck, star, circle, bath, rock, socks, shoes, cup, spoon, bite, help, please, bib, teeth, eyes, nose, head, toes, one, two, five, nine, garden, outside, bye-bye, night-night, the list literally goes on and on! I'm not even shocked when he says new words anymore! haha!

+ he's currently cutting his 12th tooth (4th molar)
+ he's allowed to eat pretty much anything at this point
+ his appetite varies from day to day and meal to meal, and sometimes he'll like a food and next time he won't. He's picky at times and a "good eater" at others. I never know what to expect when we have meals or snacks!
+ black beans are still his favorite and don't judge me that sometimes he eats them like 4 times a week! It's our fall-back when he won't eat anything else.
+ usually loves Greek yogurt, applesauce, peanut butter, bananas, crackers, chocolate chips, green smoothies, cheerios (only when sharing with Daddy!)
+ still nurses on demand at home and drinks whole milk at school. Drinks from all kinds of sippy cups--rubber spouts, plastic spouts, straws...

+ ehhh...we had a really rough patch b/c he was so sick for a while, and we did a lot of traveling the month before that between the holidays and visiting friends. We are getting back into better routines and he's actually falling asleep IN his crib now, instead of in my arms! That's progress, friends!! I still stand beside his bed until he's fully asleep, but it's a step in the right direction!
+ still sleeps with a paci, but that's usually the only time he gets it, unless he's really sick or we're going on a long car trip (like 2+ hours)

Favorite Songs:
+ "I Like to Move It" from Madagascar 
+ "Elmo's World"  
+ the intro song for Sesame Street
+ Itsy-Bitsy spider 
+ If You're Happy and You Know It
+ pretty much any music that he can dance to (which is basically anything!) Lately we've been rocking "Uptown Funk" :)

Favorite Toys/Activities:
+ books!! Books are his favorite!
+ balls
+ blocks
+ puzzles -- he can actually put together the chunky wooden ones! Or at least put the pieces in the right places, even if he doesn't get them to fit perfectly in the slots
+ shape sorters - still working on this skill, but he gets it right a lot of the time!
+ coloring/drawing/arts & crafts
+ watching Sesame Street
+ playing outside, at the park, and going for walks
+ checking the mail with Daddy each evening
+ bath time
+ dancing 

+ 24 pounds
+ about 30 inches tall
+ size 5 shoes, size 12 month pants, sizes 12-24 month shirts and PJs 

There's a growing need for discipline around these parts, and it's a difficult path to forge! We're still in the stage where he isn't intentionally being bad, but he's testing boundaries and relentless about figuring stuff out...even if it's something we don't want him doing. He gets frustrated easily when he can't do something and will let out a high pitch scream. We're trying to get past that, but part of it is just his developmental stage. We encourage using words or gestures rather than fussing or crying as much as possible. It's worse if he's sleepy, so we usually start "spiraling" close to nap or bedtime. Despite the normal challenges of having a toddler who is rapidly developing, teething, and still not the best sleeper, Grayson is an absolute joy! He makes friends wherever he goes. Any time we are out and about, people stop to tell us how cute or handsome he is, and he'll really lay it on thick with the smile and the eyes and all the charming little boy goodness he has! :) He's freaking hilarious and makes us laugh all the time. He makes the best silly faces and sounds! Lately we've enjoyed immitating laughter from the various Sesame Street characters. He can laugh like Ernie, Elmo, and Bert. :) He can also say "om, nom, nom!" like Cookie Monster. 
I'm having the best time being a mommy to this little bean. :)



Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Things I Learned Amidst the Plague

If you know me personally or follow my Facebook, you know my family has been through it lately! Grayson was very sick for a week, with a cold that turned into a nasty ear infection--resulting in two trips to the doctor, lots of calls to the on-call nurse, days of scary high fevers, and lots and lots of medicine! Then we had a good week. The dust seemed to settle and my little boy was my little boy again--running around and laughing. Then one random morning I started noticing little bumps on his body which looked like bug bites. In a panic, I stripped his bed and washed everything in hot water, wiped down his mattress with Lysol, and scanned every inch of everything for a sign of bed bugs. By late afternoon his bumps had increased and intensified, so we took him to urgent care. Turns out, he is very allergic to penicillin, so his antibiotics for the ear infection were taking a toll on his body. After just a couple days, my poor baby was covered from head to toe in large, angry looking welts and splotches. He was swollen, red-purple, and scratching until he bled. This resulted in more fevers, more medicine, and two more trips to the doctor. Oh, and lots and lots of time off work! Then, as luck would have it, I got a cold at the tail-end of all this and was sick for a few days. I worked through it because ain't no body got time for missing more work!

So, amidst all this unpleasantness, sorrow, fear, sleep deprivation, and generally horrible circumstances, I learned a few things.

1) Thank God for breastfeeding. Seriously. Thank you, Lord! I have never been so grateful for not having weaned Grayson yet. During the first round of illness, with the scary-high fevers, Grayson would not eat or drink anything. Anything. I suppose if it had come down to it, we could have syringe-fed him liquids to keep him from dehydrating. But thankfully, he wanted to nurse around the clock. And I was more than happy to let him. Breastfeeding literally saved us a trip to the ER for dehydration. Not to mention the comfort and antibodies I was providing him.

2) I know a lot about Sesame Street, y'all. Like, probably more than any of you know. I'm not bragging; it's just the truth. We finished all the available seasons on Amazon (we have been working through these for a while), and we started on Season 1 of a DVD of classic episodes. So, I have seen the very first episode of Sesame Street. It feels cool to say that. (I know. Mom life!) And with watching those first few episodes and seeing the vast differences between 1969 Sesame Street and current Sesame Street, I decided to do some Googling because what else am I doing anyway? So, I learned a lot about it. And I'm oddly obsessed now.

3) Speaking of Sesame Street, I learned a new word! Deciduous. Do you know that one? Well, I learned it from Sesame Street! It's a tree that loses it's leaves once a year. Whoop! I'm sure that will come up in casual conversation soon (I mean, other than me telling people that adults can still learn from Sesame Street!).

4) I would be lost with my husband. I already knew this. He prepares most of my meals, so it kind of goes without saying. ;) But for real...he was a life saver! He took turns staying home with Grayson so I wouldn't have to run through quite as much sick time. He took Grayson to two of the four doctor appointments. He talked to countless nurses on the phone. He administered syringe after syringe of medicine. And he was there to share my concerns, give me strength and encouragement, and pray with me through it all.

5) God is SO faithful. I know the whole attitude of hey, it could be worse, is only so uplifting during hardships, but it really is true. In light of all we were going through, I found myself thinking about others who were going through much more difficult times. I found myself praying for them and praising God for each blessing we had -- access to doctors and medicine, the ability to breastfeed, sick leave, sleep when we could get it, and ultimate protection and comfort. There was one night, after we had discovered the ear infection, that Grayson's eyes became bloodshot and goopy. I immediately assumed he had pink eye, on top of everything. I was feeling so defeated and exhausted. I prayed out to God so intently and purposefully that He would heal Grayson's eyes and he would wake up with them totally normal. The next morning I was prepared for them to be stuck shut with goop, but I honestly wasn't worried because I just felt like God had healed him. And he did! Grayson's eyes were never red or goopy again. Sure it could have been a coincidence, but either way, I'm thankful it was not an extra thing we needed to deal with!

6) Y'all, when they say nothing good happens after midnight, that is the TRUTH! More than once I had to get up with Grayson in the middle of the night and actually go out to the living room and read Goodnight Moon 40 times and watch an episode of Sesame Street before he would finally go back to sleep (darn you, Prednisone and your insomnia-inducing ways!). The only interesting thing that happened during those wee hours of the morning was realizing that my brother was still awake and making grilled cheese at 3:30 AM. Sheesh!

7) The moment you decide you're going to be super diligent about saving sick time and money (particularly from the health savings account) so you can start preparing for baby #2 is the exact moment that it all hits the fan and you start flying through both :( It was a real reminder that we'll need to rely heavily on God to provide for us and grow our family because our own efforts are only so useful. Our hardest work can be destroyed suddenly. But if God wants us to have another baby, He will take care of us in a way that we are unable to.

8) Our friends and family are wonderful. Everyone was expressing concern, lifting us up in prayer, and offering to help in any way possible. One friend even offered to watch Grayson for the day so we could go back to work. I ended up canceling on her b/c I thought he had pink eye, but her offer was still greatly appreciated!

9) I can't say enough about Bulloch Pediatrics. Not only did they take care of us for three separate appointments during all of this, but Dr Whitlock, who is not even our primary doctor, called to check up on Grayson the other night. And their on-call nurse triage system is a lifesaver! We've used it more times than I can count. It's wonderful!

10) I love being a mom. It's hard in ways I'm never prepared for. It's frustrating. It involves endless sacrifice. But the love I felt caring for my sick baby and the joy I felt in seeing him get better...nothing beats it. It's the most heart breaking and fulfilling thing I've ever done. I wouldn't have it any other way!

The first time Grayson finally ate again! It was an exciting moment! His very favorite food--black beans! (no, it's not chocolate cake as many FB friends assumed! But don't worry, I definitely tried chocolate cake the night before and it was a no-go! ha!)

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