Wednesday, October 19, 2011

My Beautiful Boy

We are stuck home today because Graham had a temperature of 103 this morning, and was feverish last night as well. Poor little guy is also congested, coughing and just a mess. I think I should have not gotten him all those vaccines at once, combined with teething, poor little guy didn't have a chance against this infection. For the record, Graham has his four front teeth on the bottom and top now, and what feels like molars trying to break through on all four corners of his mouth. The human body is amazing though. Even while his little system is working overtime trying to be healthy, Graham took his first steps last night! He just stood there for a moment and then took a step forward. Everyone got so excited (both Spencer and I were there) Graham started clapping too and lost his balance. A few minutes later I was spotting him putting my hands around his waist, and then I let go and he kept walking a few steps. Today he took two steps by himself. Very exciting!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Graham's 12 month Well Baby

Graham had his 12 month well baby visit with Gwen. He weighed in at 22lbs 14 oz (46th percentile) and 2ft 7 inches (78th percentile) long. Almost exactly the same stats as Gwen at this age (he is actually a bit heavier). He got all his vaccines plus a flu shot, which was a lot, too much. I am supposed to take him back for a flu shot booster. In the past I thought our pediatrician has been a bit conservative, but I was pleased when she was supportive of Graham's extended nursing and not terribly concerned with his lack of interest in other types of nutrition. With the caveat that it is working for me to nurse him so much at night. Hmm....kinda. Of course I would like him to nurse less at night so everyone can sleep more, but I also have a hard time envisioning what that would look like. Spencer has been able to put Graham to sleep on my weekly Wednesday night off, late and with minimal crying. I don't want to night wean him, he still seems so much like a baby. Dr. Gruver mentioned again that she thinks baby boys need more cuddles and nurturing than girls. That said, we are considering Spencer providing more of the cuddles and nurturing. We have a few different ideas on how to get him to sleep more at night and will share our progress. In the meantime, Mama's milk bar is open 24/7.
We took Graham to Fleet Week! He loved riding on the trains and streetcars and was very excited about the airplanes in the sky. He was super good about his earplugs and didn't fuss with them at all. We think he forgot they were there.
It took over a year, but I finally had a chance to finish painting Graham's belly cast :-)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Our Little Girl is 3!

In the weeks before Gwen's third birthday it dawned on me, she is only two years old. Practically all summer we have been saying she is almost three, I had forgotten, she was only two. She is so tall, mature, articulate, capable, and smart (I like to think she takes after me ;-) Well now my little girl is three. She is becoming such an amazing little person. I no longer fear her being ADHD, she now can focus on a task (if she wants). She goes to preschool two mornings a week and seems to be doing well there. She is practicing tracing her letters and numbers, and desperately wants to be able to use scissors. She takes gymnastics once a week and while she has a hard time waiting her turn and listening to directions, she is learning. Her imagination is blossoming. She makes up songs and stories. We have to make sure we censor her media for anything that might be remotely considered scary, since her comprehension is pretty good. She was fascinated with a Peter and the Wolf CD we borrowed from the library and listened to it over and over again for a few weeks before stating she didn't want to listen to it anymore because it was took her a while to process, but once she decided the Wolf was too scary, that was it. Since turning three she has started asking, "But why?" and has began practicing her negotiation skills. "How about just one more." She continues to be adventurous (but not reckless) and outgoing, making friends every where we go. Gwen is an amazing big sister and while Graham is starting to get up in her business, so to speak, she is learning to work it out and to put precious things up high. Her appetite is slowing (she had an amazing growth spurt this summer) and we have to catch ourselves not engaging in power struggles over food. Her pediatrician assures us she is not wasting away. Gwen weighed in at a whopping 40lbs 12.8 oz (98th percentile) and is 3ft 3in (94th percentile). This gives her a BMI of 94%, and apparently 'healthy' weight range is 5%-84%, though she appears absolutely perfect to us. She practically has a six pack underneath her baby pot belly and her legs are mainly muscle. But it is a good reminder to make sure calories consumed are nutritious. Gwen is an amazing girl and we look forward to experiencing her as a preschooler!

When asked Gwen told her teachers her favorite color was orange, so they made her an orange Birthday crown.

Birthday Bash at The Studley Farm

 It has been two weeks since the Farm Themed Birthday Bash we hosted for the kids on Gwen's birthday, and I have just now had a moment to sit and do this blog post. It was a great party which included four generations (Great Gramie Camie), both Grandpas, Grandee Sandee of course, and an Aunt/Great Uncle/Cousin, and about a dozen families we count amongst our friends. We are so thankful for our local family (a stretch since most everyone lives on the other side of the Golden Gate) making it out to celebrate the kids birthdays. Even though our stove broke the night before, we were able to go forward with our menu of vegetarian chili (thank goodness I had already made it) and Annie's Mac N Cheese (Spencer made a total of 8 boxes using his propane burner- like camping, right!?!). There were also 24 corn muffins, and 24 mini corn muffins consumed (I thought for sure I would be left with a bunch of those). And I am glad I went back for the 16 inch cake pan, because there were only a few small pieces left. I was surprised we had corn on the cob left over, 20 pieces! Spencer only saw the one bag of 10, which, like you do with family and friends, someone cut up into small pieces so everyone got some. We have a tiny little house, so we spread out the party. In the front yard we had the bounce house, which was a huge hit! Graham had a chance to bounce in it before the party and loved it! When all the three year olds jumped in with him, he was fine and bounced on his knees waving his arms. The only bad thing about the bounce house in the front, people had a hard time making into the house and into the backyard where the food and drinks were.  In the back we also had a mini pumpkin decorating station in a 'lounge' Spencer set up in the shaded corner of the yard. The mini pumpkins were grown in our garden (a volunteer plant no less) and each child got to take one home in their canvas tote bag, along with whatever goodies from the pinata. The pinata was baby friendly, since this was Graham's party too, and was a cute little barn. Instead of whacking it with a stick, each child pulled a ribbon until the candy (Annie's fruit bunnies, goldfish, raisins, and chocolate kisses) all fell out. Before the pinata, there was cake and ice cream. I made a 16 inch Vegan Zucchini Honey cake with store bought cream cheese icing (because we can't all be perfect all the time!) and decorated it with colored coconut to resemble a farm landscape with three candles for Gwen (a barn, chicken, and cow), and three store bought iced daisies. I got the idea of colored coconut from a memory I had of an Easter Bunny cake, and have since confirmed with my Mom that she did indeed make an Easter Bunny cake decorated with colored coconut. It is a great idea because it is okay if your icing job isn't perfect since you are going to cover the cake with fluffy coconut. My Dad's girlfriend Shona made a little smash cake for Graham with a farm landscape for his little tractor candle (complete with a pretzel fence), and a special 3 tiered princess cake for Gwen. It was so much work, and so worth it. I hope this is the beginning of a tradition of a combined birthday party, because I don't know if I could do this twice!