Tuesday, October 9, 2012

And we're back.....

Fact: I'm back... I will be starting to blog again, and perhaps this will be a small outlet for me!! Yay!!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Slacking Majorly...

I have to admit, I've been a slacker... A major slacker! I haven't blogged like I've promised to do to keep everyone in formed... Nor have I uploaded any pictures... I've made a few mid-year resolutions for myself.. Every weekend, I am going to upload pictures (or unload them off my new camera, which was my Mama's Day gift!!!) and write a blog every 2 weeks instead of once every 4 or 5 weeks. In addition to those tasks, I also have some personal goals I want to achieve: thanks to the nice weather for motivation, I would like to take either a morning walk or an evening walk every day with CJ. I've been getting headaches like I did back in the day and I'm wondering if it's stress and being tired, sleeping wrong, neck/back issues or actually some spinal fluid problems again. I head to the neuro-opthamologist in June to get some tests done again, just to double check the optic nerves... Only problem with this doctor (he is GREAT though), he uses prescriptions to "heal" you. Since I'm breastfeeding CJ still, that is not an option for me... Hopefully, he'll have some non-medicinal solutions if I do have some swelling and CSF issues.

Anyways, enough about me, now for the little monkey man! SO much news. Physical Therapy with Eleanor is great. We've only had to see her for the initial evaluation, and then another appointment 4 weeks after that in May. His head tilt is due to stronger neck and back muscles on the right side as compared to his left, which may just be due to his position in the my belly that harbored itself and now just started to show itself. It seems to be disappearing more and more as his left neck and back muscles, in general, are getting much stronger! He loves to spend time in his two exersaucer's and limited time in his doorway jumper and Galloping Fun Jumperoo's! Tummy time is very fun as CJ is trying very hard to move and squirm around. He can easily spin around on his back and belly now. He still only rolls to his right but can roll onto his back (when he feels like it). He has to develop more strength in his left side (neck and back muscles). He can get up onto his knees with no problem and push up on his arms! He doesn't know how (and isn't quite strong enough, yet) to put the two together. He just can't get his little chubby belly off the ground!! Hehe! CJ likes to lay over my legs and be on all fours, and usually he pushes up on his feet... Silly boy!!

An even better part of CJ's development is his voice........ I say that with a bit of reservation because he has learned to yell and screech!! Especially when he doesn't like if you take a toy away or leave the room for any reason. He also has learned to fake cough to get my attention if I don't jump to him immediately during a screaming fest... Smart little boy, huh? (Speaking of which, apparently his exersaucer isn't fun enough, he just had a screaming-fest and is now laying on my nap nursing as I finish typing this!) He's also trying to sit up. He can hold himself on his arm's for a bit, but usually ends up falling to one side or the other. A few more weeks, and I think we'll have lift off!

After his 4 month check up, we got the go-ahead to start cereal and solids... I tried rice cereal and oatmeal cereal. He didn't like either one. I mixed it with breastmilk, formula and goat's milk. We tried to feed him before I nursed, after a nursed, in the middle of nursing and he still wanted nothing to do with it!! My theory was he just didn't like it one bit! After a whole month's frustration, a couple days before he turned 5 months old , I decided to just go with some veggies, and sure enough, he enjoyed them. We've gotten through squash, sweet potatoes, avocado (his favorite) and peas! He's like all of them, too!! Today I went to Babies R Us and bough four cases of Earth's Best baby food: First Fruits, Fruit Mix, Veggie Mix, and Fruit and Grain Mix. Since CJ doesn't eat solids but once a day, I'm going to start with Fruits in the mornings now. And hopefully, he'll eat some cereal mixed with fruit for breakfast. I've avoided the Stage 1 foods. I noticed the only difference was the amount in the container. I've saved money with buying Stage 2's and just using 1/2 a container at a feeding... Woohoo!!

About a week and a half ago, I took CJ to see Dr. Katz because he was pulling on his ear. Basically, he just found another body part... Yay!! The nurse weighed him and at 5 months he weighed 17lbs, 6 oz!!! Apparently, I still have a chunky monkey man on my hands! He's very healthy though, so weight is not an issue for me.

CJ is doing so well, and I'm so proud of his growth and development. He's a precious little boy and I can't imagine my life without him!! Until next time, be well!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Another month gone and past...

We've done it! We've reached four months (last Thursday)!! CJ is doing phenomenal. He had his four month check-up on Friday with Dr. Katz; she said he is doing great! Here are his stats: Wt: 16lbs, 1oz//Ht: 26inches//HC: 16.5inches. For weight, he is in the 75th percentile; and for height he is in the 50th.

Prior Stats:
2 months (02.20.09) Wt: 13lbs, 9oz//Ht: 23inches//HC: 16inches
1 month (01.20.09) Wt: 10lbs, 12oz//Ht: 22.25inches//HC: 15inches
2 weeks (01.02.09) Wt: 8lbs, 6oz//Ht: 21inches//HC: 14inches
1 week (12.23.08) Wt: 7lbs, 5oz//Ht: 20inches//HC: 13.75inches
Birth (12.16.08) Wt: 7lbs, 8oz//Ht: 19.25inches//HC: 34.5cm

Overall, everything is looking good. He is rolling over from back-to-tummy both ways now!! And can successfully grasp a small toy and place it in his mouth; however, from time to time, CJ does get a bit frustrated/over-excited if he can't make the toy to his mouth. Also, his head has that right lateral flexion that I mentioned. I've been doing all my tricks and "games" to help him strengthen and lengthen the one side of his neck, but I wasn't able to do that much. I asked Dr. Katz about it, and she agreed that physical therapy would be the best thing for him. His diagnosis is Torticollis, which is a just fancy medical term for muscle shortening). We have our appointment on Thursday afternoon with Eleanor Campbell at Advanced Physical Therapy in Cranford. I used to work as a PT Aide there!! I've worked with Eleanor, and I have learned so much from her. Dr. Katz actually refers patients to her; I'm glad we saw eye-to-eye on CJ's PT! It's going to be a bit strange being on the parenting side of the treatment when I used to be the one helping the patients! In addition to being prescribed for therapy, CJ also had 4 booster shots, and the Rotovirus stuff... Saturday he developed a fever (most likely due to the vaccines); but to err on the side of caution, I called the answering service at my pediatrician's office just to inform them. And I did exactly as I had expected... Tylenol and lots of loving and cuddling!

On a very happy note, CJ started Rice cereal!!!!!! On Friday night, he loved it. He was a big fan. Saturday, not so much... On Sunday night, I made the cereal quite a bit thicker and he actually enjoyed it, and got most of it in his mouth (instead of spitting it out). I will say though, mixing rice cereal with the right amount breast milk is definitely a science that I need some practice with! I always have trouble making the right "recipe" to get it to a consistency that CJ likes... All in all, he has done well with the cereal. In about 4 weeks or so, we'll also be able to start veggies and then fruits... It's amazing how it all happens this quickly.

I've started to scrapbook CJ's photos (finally). My mother has a Cricut machine, and I decided to take advantage of her new gadget. It's not as great as I had expected it to be. Perhaps I haven't used it to it's full potential yet; nevertheless, I do enjoy it. I printed out close to 400 pictures that have been taken over the course of the last four months. I've only scrapbooked 4 or 5 pages, and they are just from the day CJ was born!! Now that all of CJ's pictures are on disc, I will also be taking the time to upload them to a website for viewing shortly. I certainly won't be uploading all 400, but I'll definitely upload a decent amount!

Monday, April 6, 2009

How time flies....

Tomorrow, CJ will be 15 weeks old... and in 10 days he'll be four months old!! Time flies incredibly fast, too fast really. We've had tons of lovely development in CJ-land... As far as him holding his head up, he's doing a fantastic job. He never wants to sit back anymore, he pulls himself forward... Even when we put him in his car seat, we have to push his head back so we can buckle him in; man, he is NOT a big fan of that!! His neck has the slightest bit of lateral flexion to the right, but that is nothing Mama can't work on. He turns his head both ways perfectly, and I think he might be starting to recognize his name, too!! He definitely turns towards my voice when I call him. But I'm not sure if that's just because it's my voice?? Who knows!? In a crowded and busy room/store, if I talk, immediately CJ's head finds me (or Daddy's). It's a beautiful thing.

CJ is very busy learning how to roll over! Tummy time is great, he actually likes it (at times). He's very chatty when we lay down together... He is trying to move and has figured out how to scoot himself backwards, and gets frustrated if he's trying to reach a toy that is in front of him. He can roll with only a little difficulty from tummy to back. When he is on his back, he has no problem rolling onto his side! He tries very hard to roll onto his belly; his head goes and he just can't figure out how to move his top leg to help him roll over! Very frustrating for me to watch because CJ gets frustrated... But I know in a couple of weeks, his little muscles will be stronger and he'll be able to do it all on his own!!
Laughter is a key to a wonderful day! (For me at least.) We can get CJ to laugh at a lot of different things; raspberries on the belly, "flying" like an airplane, Mama doing arm lifts with CJ on the floor many other various games and silliness! Of course I'm very biased, but he has such an adorable belly laugh!! He still gets the hiccups like crazy, poor little man!
As far as sleeping, he does much better. He is usually up between 1 - 3 times until he wakes up for the day. He doesn't like to nap for me very long... So, when I'm by myself, it's a bit tough to get stuff done. But somehow I still manage to get the laundry put away (usually) and get some house-cleaning done (as much as I can).
On top of all that, he is a little chatterbox at times!!! I wish i just knew what he was saying half the time! (But hey, don't we all?) He squeaks and smiles and giggles and coo's all in one at times... CJ loves to blow bubbles, and he is drooling like a maniac at times. He can put his hand in his mouth with no problems and is starting to try and grab toys when we hold them in front of him.
As far as his size, when we went to the doctor aroudn 3 months, he was weighing in at 15lbs!!! (What a chunky monkey!) We're not exactly sure where his weight and height are now, but he is out of (most) 0-3 month, and 3 month clothes, and well into 3-6 and 6 month outfits!!! I can't beleive it really; I feel like just yesterday I was dressing him in little newborn onsies that were still a little big on him...
Anywho, I think I'm pretty much up to date. CJ was baptized on Saturday, March 28! It was a BEAUTIFUL ceremony, and Monsignor Brown did a lovely job. I couldn't have expected/asked for/attended a more beautiful and touching Baptism. I felt truly blessed to be surrounded by my family and friends. As soon as I get some pictures from some family, I'll be posting them... along with all the other pictures from the past four months. I'm still trying to debate where I'm going to upload them all to! I feel so busy sometimes and feel like I don't get accomplished all that I need to or want to!!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Pure, Genuine Love...

On Monday (03/16), CJ will be three months old!! We've hit so many milestones in the past few weeks, I haven't been able to keep up!! The one I am most proud of is his laughter. It is the most beautiful laugh I've ever heard. We hit that milestone March 11 (also, my niece Abby's 1st birthday) right before shower time!! I was blowing raspberries on CJ's belly, and WHAM! a good bit of laughter. Of course it brought tears to my eyes, and Frankie was excited as well! He was on a work call, but he was able to catch some of the laughter's end when he was able to break loose from the call. My biggest realization in these fast few weeks was putting a finger what a mother's love is all about.... It is by far the purest, most genuine love I have ever known and experienced. Everyday my heart swells up even more than I thought it ever could. I'm a big mush, I know. And I'm sure that everyday my love for CJ is going to grow and grow and grow.........

Also, CJ is very adamant about sitting up now. He will pull his head up and not want to lean back anymore. He has to take in everything that is going on. We have a Fisher Price Kick & Play Bouncer. It is probably CJ's most favorite toy... He loves kicking and watching the music go off. If I knew how to upload videos off of my cell phone, I would totally post it; however, I am far from technologically inclined. (This blog, with pictures, is as far as I can go really.) He is also a big fan of His Fisher Price Kick and Crawl Playmat, specifically the inflatable ball with a rattle inside. He likes to hit and kick the ball all at the same time!!! Very talented I think. (Perhaps a future soccer player, or NFL kicker?? Eh, we have PLENTY of time to see about that...) We put a Whoozit on his carseat straps, and let me tell you, that toy is worth every penny... Thankfully, I "inherited" this toy from a family I used to babysit for... A great investment, I think.... CJ loves playing with all the little trinkets that hang from it's sides... A definite award winner in my eyes.

We have a few upcoming events this month... March 14, we have Abby's birthday party. This will be his first party!! And at the end of the month, we are gearing up for CJ's Christening March 28! I have to say, I've always wanted to have a boy. BUT when I go out looking for Christening outfits (or clothes in general), girls definitely win that battle. Yes, boys clothes are cute, but there is SO much more for girls. No biggy though; I found CJ's after-ceremony outfit, and we are working on the actual Christening outfit...

In the next few weeks, I'm planning on uploading CJ's photos from my digital camera onto a website. I uploaded them onto my home PC, and that computer just crashed. Thank goodness I never deleted the photos from the memory card!!! PHEW!! When those pictures are uploaded, I will put up the link to the site. I know many of you are waiting for pictures to be posted. I am pretty bad with uploading/posting... =\ I promise, they will come soon!!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Two months and counting...

I certainly can not believe CJ has reached two months old already! I know it's very cliche to say, but time goes by way too fast. I can't emphasize this enough. To new parents, and parents to be, I have one piece of unsolicited advice to offer you (and I'm far away from being a parenting expert)! If you want to remember the youngest days/weeks/months of your child's life, write it all down. Keep track of everything you think you're going to want to remember and reminisce about: how much s/he sleeps, eats, poops, pees, farts, etc. I assure you, when you say to yourself, "I'll do it later"; Take it from me, it never happens. Monday when we woke up, CJ was all smiles (as he is most mornings). I sat there and I tried to remember the first two weeks we came home. (Granted those two weeks were Christmas and then New Year's, where everything around the holidays in general is a big blur, with or without a baby!) To my surprise, I sadly, and unfortunately couldn't remember much. I do remember always holding him when he would sleep and wait for his sleepy smiles and funny faces. I remember never wanting to put him down. We cuddled A LOT. We took trips to the doctor's office week one and week two. If I didn't write down in CJ's baby book how much he weighed, I never would be able to remember today.

This is (a small amount of) what I've experienced/learned from my two months of being a mommy: Take pictures of everything (crying, smiling, sleeping, laying like a lump, in a swing, in his crib/bassinet, ANYTHING). And make sure you get some pictures with your baby as well. Take family pictures as often as possible. Don't have someone to take a picture? Well, do the old "reach your arm out as far as you can" trick. No matter how tired you are, always take a shower to rejuvenate yourself. Before you go into labor (my suggestion is to do this as early as you want in your pregnancy), go buy some fancy or your favorite moisturizing body wash/body lotion/or some exfoliating shower salt glows or something of the sort. If possible, buy some hair products that allow you to style your hair without having to blow dry it. Put the items away for when you bring baby home. Trust me, you will feel SO much better after having pampered yourself. Even this very short and subtle shower experience post-delivery will make you feel 150% better than you did before; plus it gives you a pretty feeling again!!

CJ had his 2 month check-up with Dr. Katz Friday, February 20... My little chunker is just that, a chunker; a very healthy, happy chunky man. Here are his stats:
Wt: 13lbs, 9oz//Ht: 23inches//HC: 16 inches (His weight was over 75th percentile and his height is just above the 50th... like I said, a little chunker!!)

Prior Stats:
1 month (01.20.09) Wt: 10lbs, 12oz//Ht: 22.25inches//HC: 15inches (75th percentile across the board!)
2 weeks (01.02.09) Wt: 8lbs, 6oz//Ht: 21inches//HC: 14inches
1 week (12.23.08) Wt: 7lbs, 5oz//Ht: 20inches//HC: 13.75inches
Birth (12.16.08) Wt: 7lbs, 8oz//Ht: 19.25inches//HC: 34.5cm

Saturday, February 7, 2009

The importance of CJ's smiles

It's no longer important that I don't remember what it feels like to sleep more than 2 1/2 hours at a time... What is important is the look on CJ's face when after I change his little non-existent butt after he wakes up in the morning. His smiles are beautiful...

His smiles in the morning are by far the best (for me at least!) Whether he is wide awake and happy for 15 minutes or an hour, his cheerfulness gets me through the rest of the day; no matter what time we wake up, how much we slept the night before... It all just doesn't matter after he shows me his gorgeous, toothless smile.

CJ is about a week away from being 2 months old (February 16 he'll officially be 2 months). His greatest achievement at this point, I think, is smiling when he hears my voice and sees my face. It fills me up with happiness I never knew existed!! He's also developing well. He's holding his head up like a champ, and he doesn't fight tummy time (as long as we get him on his belly under his terms, he's happy; that is the key to tummy time I believe.) His newest thing is chewing on my finger. He loves to chew on my pinky right in front, and then also in the back of his mouth... He doesn't take a binky from me, which is ok, I'm not against them or for them. If they work, they work. If not, I don't want to force him to take it, but he also chews on those now!! i wasn't sure if it a sign of teething (not very likely, but who knows!?)

We go to the pediatrician February 20 for his two month check up and some vaccines. I'm spreading out his vaccines so he doesn't get more than two at a time. If I can, I will only allow him to get one at a time. It's pretty stressful for him to undergo more than that I think. Yes, I survived the shots and so have many other people. But when he gets one, he tenses his arms and legs up, and putting a needle into a tense muscle doesn't feel very good!!

Anyways, CJ is eating like a champ, he takes a bottle (of expressed BM) for daddy (not for me... he'd rather have the real stuff, I guess). But it is kind of nice just in case I want to or have to go out somewhere, and daddy is watching him. I've gone out to the store for a quick ride, but never out for more than an hour (and I've done that once, maybe twice). And I'm always local!! Never more than 10 minutes away. I'm certainly NOT complaining because I don't think I'm ready to leave him for more than that yet! February 28th I'm heading to a tricky tray and that will be my first night out of the house with Frankie home with CJ for a good amount of time. The doors open at 5pm and the auctions start at 7pm... However, the school where the event is being held is within walking distance (10 minutes max; 1-3 minutes driving (depending on lights). So if I had to get home for whatever reason, I'm REALLY close. I think it's a good planned first night out!!!

All in all, everything is going well. Transitioning to parenthood can be a challenge. Don't get me wrong, Frank and I have had some up's and down's over the past almost 8 weeks, but everything has been up for the most part! I'm pretty much exclusively breastfeeding, so Frankie doesn't necessarily have to get up at night. I'm a little quicker with changing diapers, so I take care of them at night... It keeps CJ sleeping rather than waking up!! Plus, CJ has an innate sense of who is changing him, and he usually pee's on Frankie 2 out of 3 times when he changes him!! We agreed that during the night, I'll change him so we ALL can get some more sleep... Silly daddy!!