Sunday, May 31, 2009

A "the baby won't go to sleep" post

I had about five hours of sleep last night and it is not looking good for tonight. I am not sure why Daniel is being such a stinker about staying asleep (this kid has some sort of radar that tells him when I am ready to lay down and sleep because that is when he gets grumbly and fussy. He sleeps great when I am not trying to sleep), but it sure is brutal having to take care of my every day normal stuff while fighting the desire to curl up on my bed and zonk out.

To amuse you while I try and get the baby sleeping deeply enough that he might consider staying asleep when I put him in his bed I will share some pictures of the boys. Friday was our ward camp out which was not much of a camp out for us since we did not actually camp out. It was close enough that we could go for the dinner and evening but not have to stay for the night. The pictures are all of Evan and Harry because Daniel was busy being held by various ward members that wanted a baby fix with out actually having to give birth.

The boys thought it was fun to eat dinner on the ground. They asked for the lasagna even though they both hate it and did not even eat a bite of it. They did gobble down the macaroni and cheese that i brought for the potluck.

Throwing rocks in the lake was a blast.

I love Harry's laugh, it is very infectious.

The highlight of the evening was the campfire. They were fascinated by the whole process.

Monday, May 25, 2009


Today marks the unofficial start of summer. We have a quiet day planned but did splurge on some steaks that we will grill on the good old charcoal grill. It is a bittersweet day for me since it is the last day of my husband's leave, tomorrow he is back to work, leaving me all alone with three kids.

Luckily we have a nice quiet week ahead of us. It is the first time in months that we don't have any doctor's appointments planned. I am almost giddy with excitement! It is nice that we are finally getting a chance to have a break and even possibly plan some stuff with friends (what most stay at home mothers do when faced with a day alone with three kids). I have almost forgotten what it is like to have a play date to look forward to. It will be nice to not be so wrapped up in just keeping my head above water and maybe get a chance to enjoy the swim.

Here is a gratuitous baby picture for the grandparents who think I don't post enough pictures. I love the twisted positions that babies can sleep in with out doing things like throwing out backs and the like which would happen to us older and more decrepit people. The poor little guy has a bit of a cold thanks to his generous brothers. I tried to keep them from sharing their germs, but that was impossible with such smitten older brothers.

Friday, May 22, 2009

It's IEP time

Disclaimer: if this is a confusing post it is because I had very little sleep last night and I have a baby that is finally sleeping in my in my arms.

We had Evan's first IEP meeting in preparation for Kindergarten on Wednesday. It was a very interesting process to get to the meeting and the meeting it's self was also rather eye opening. The preschool folks that did the evaluations were amazing. I think they did a great job with the IEP and if it is followed Evan should have a great school year.

Sometimes I wish that I could go back in time to the first time I was chatted with the neurologist about the effects of Evan's stroke. I would dope slap that man on the back of his head for telling me that Evan would show no signs of the stroke after a year. Maybe physically it could have been possible with a more mild stroke but Evan's stroke was not a tiny minor stroke. It took out a full third of his right hemisphere and that part of the brain controls more than just muscles.

This was really driven home when I was listening to everyone talk at the IEP meeting. The stroke affects how he sees things. He has trouble seeing things that come at him from the left. It has also hindered his ability to draw and write. Evan will not draw anything beyond lines and wonky circles when his peers are able to do a lot more. Evan writing his name is problematical for the same reason as the drawing.

Evan's language comprehension skills have also been hindered by his stroke. In novel situations where he is easily distracted he is less likely to be able to use different language skills that his peers can. He can do better when he is at home and in familiar surroundings but he would be lost in school if there were not going to be accommodations for him.

One of the biggest things that could hinder him is his easily distractible nature (another stroke issue). It can be hard for Evan to concentrate on what he is doing with out someone to help redirect him. We are hoping that we can easily get him a helper to sit with him in the classroom and keep him on task as well as helping him with physical tasks he needs assistance with. The budget crunch being what it is we may get some resistance with it but I am going to fight for that should they try and refuse. It would also help ease the pressure on the Kindergarten teacher who will also have other kids to deal with in the class.

I think the best part about the meeting was having my feelings confirmed about Evan's potential. He has the ability to be a smart kid that can catch up with his peers and learn to adapt to his brain injuries, we just have to get him the support he needs so that he is not forgotten and frustrated. It also confirmed my decision to send him to public schools. The services he will be getting are much more than I could even attempt at home and the specialists are much more trained to deal with them than I am.

Monday, May 18, 2009

R.I.P. Sparky

Once upon a time there was a happy squirrel named Sparky. He loved to run along power lines to reach distant trees. Once day he decided to try a new way down to the ground. Sadly for Sparky that new way down happened to complete the circuit. With a bang Sparky found himself in Squirrel Heaven.

We lost power for a few hours and now have a dead squirrel in our back yard thanks to Sparky's antics. For some reason my husband was not going for the possibility that we could turn Sparky into dinner (after all he was precooked right?). I would post pictures but I am not sure that you all really would like seeing the dead Sparky.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Two weeks

It is hard to believe that Daniel is already two weeks old. He had a great check up, he is already back up and a little over his birth weight. When the doctor listened to his heart he did not hear the murmur, so it is very likely that when he has his follow up echo in a few weeks that nothing at all will show up and that the hole that is present in fetal circulation is closed even if it was a bit slow to do so. Daniel also passed his follow up hearing test, so he officially hears even though we already knew that.

It has been an interesting adjustment having a "little" baby for the first time. We had to actually go out and buy some newborn sized diapers. The sized one diapers were too big to fit him properly with out covering his umbilical stump. He is also drowning a bit in his 0-3 month clothing.

Evan is cracking me up when it comes to "his" Baby Daniel. When he saw the umbilical stump he thought that it was Daniel's manly bits. I had to explain to him what it was and he actually seemed to get the concept. Later on when we were taking the baby to the hospital for the follow up hearing test Evan thought that we were exchanging "old" Daniel for a new Daniel. After all we were taking him to the place he had come from. It took us awhile to convince him that the Daniel we brought home was the same one we had always had. Evan is also obsessed with holding his brother, which he can actually do with a bit of help from me and the couch.

I finally got around to giving him an actual bath for the first time. Like a good mom I took blackmail pictures and am sharing the cuteness.

Aww look at that very sad face.

Someone is not very happy about having his bath.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Overdue update

I have been rather wrapped up in baby stuff which is normal at this stage. Here is a bit of a run down on the stuff that has been going on:
  • Daniel decided that he would give nursing a shot, but only for one day. He latched on beautifully and nursed proving to me that he could do it. But in the middle of the night changed his mind and wanted to have a bottle. Once that decision was made there was no convincing him otherwise. Things are a lot nicer now that we are not battling wills at feeding time even though I would much prefer him to nurse. I do feel good about the effort I made to nurse him. The hospital had amazing lactation support and I feel like this time around I did everything I could and that there was nothing more I could have done.
  • Good news: My c-section pain was very quick to leave. I only had to use two of the nice happy pills that my OB prescribed. Bad news: over the weekend I developed a pinched nerve in my neck which had transformed into the worst headaches of my life. The happy pills have been rather helpful for this when used with heat therapy. I am hoping that soon I will be able to actually function with out drugs in my system. I am so glad that this is happening when I have a lot of people around to help out, because otherwise it would be very hard for me to deal.
  • Evan has a blister on his left foot due to his foot brace not being properly put on. I feel bad that I was not able to prevent this, but it was also not really in my control. He will be wearing sandals until it heals, so it is a good thing that the weather is getting very nice.
  • Projects are being done at a fast pace. My husband and his father have been keeping busy doing things like building a compost bin, moving our shed so that it does not flood when it rains too much and finishing the bookcase that we moved with us in pieces. I am thrilled about the bookcase because that means I will finally (after almost a year!!!!!!) get to unpack my books and not have a pile of boxes sitting in my living room for guests to look at.
  • I am starting to get a touch of cabin fever and wanting to get out more. If my headaches behave and leave like I want them to I may actually get to go out on a date with my husband so that we can see the new Star Trek movie which I am rather excited to see.

Thursday, May 07, 2009


The many faces of Daniel

The peaceful sleeping face

The Overlord is displeased face.

The almost gas smile face.

The "Rarw!" face

The gentle kiss from big brother face.

The cute little toes! (try not to drool on your keyboard)

Monday, May 04, 2009

I am home!

And for the first time the baby came home with me.

The delivery went pretty smoothly. I was apparently contracting rather frequently while they were monitoring me, so it was very likely had the original c-section date been there I would have had to have gone in earlier. I had been kind of having the feeling that things were beginning to start so I was glad that I was able to hang on long enough that it did not end up being an emergency situation where I had to rush and find someone to watch the boys.

Daniel Michael made his appearance at 8:53 am and weighed a very nice 8 pounds 4 ounces. His head was 14 inches around (compared to Harry's whopping 16 inches). We have been struggling with nursing big time and now that my milk is in (thanks to the mad pumping skilz I learned with Evan) he has no excuse and still will not latch properly. The lactation support at the hospital I delivered was awesome and ironically much better than the hospital I delivered at in California. The lactation consultant just could not get him to latch so we are taking a bit of a break and I am pumping for the time being to maybe see if he will change his mind and actually decide to be easy on mom and nurse.

Daniel has a bit of fluid still in his left ear so we have to go back and have his hearing retested. He also has a slight heart murmur that was checked out with an echo this morning. It is nothing major and very likely that the teeny hole between the atrium has not shut yet. Evan's cardiologist reviewed the echo but the wall between the atrium was not very well pictured in the echo so we will go back at the end of June for another look. I am not worried a bit since really anything that does not make him turn blue hours after birth is really not much to worry about at all.

I am feeling pretty ok, tired but my pain is not too horrid. Something that helped me recover a lot quicker in that area was that my OB did not use staples to hold my skin shut. I always felt awful until they were taken out when I had my c-sections with the older boys. It feels very nice to be non pregnant, I still catch myself squatting to bend down and pick stuff up when I don't have to any more. It is also nice to take a deep full breath. sorry if this sounds a bit disjointed but I am typing while pumping, on pain medication and after a night filled with sleep that was hardly deep and restful.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Friday, May 01, 2009

It's baby time

I will try and get my husband to update with pictures and everything. He is a computer guy but still clueless in the art of blogging and actually clearly communicating the information that is necessary for people to know so I may have to bribe him to even try and then write out a post on paper for him to type here. He also has no idea how to post pictures, so this could get interesting. I am praying for a smooth delivery and a smooth recovery (something that has not exactly happened either time) so I would appreciate your thoughts and prayers as well. I really need "baby stay out of the NICU" vibes sent my way.