Tuesday, December 30, 2008

last post for 2008

Hey there! Thanks to the three lovely ladies who took the wool soakers off my hands. Not sure if any of them read here - I'm guessing no - but still, a public thanks! It's nice to be able to share something handmade with others who will value it, don't you agree?

I just want to drop one last brief post for 2008. Thank you, thank you, thank you to all of you faithful readers who saw me through another somewhat difficult year (not nearly as bad as 2006, but still...). Hubs, the kids, and I deeply appreciate all the prayers and good thoughts that came our way throughout my pregnancy and the ensuing chaos.

Luckily, and knock on wood, everything is going wonderfully now and we have high hopes for '09. Baby AJ (he deserves some sort of blog name besides "the baby") had his 4 month well visit today and he is doing very well. He has cracked 11 lbs (by 2 oz) and should hopefully intercept the growth chart by his 6 month well visit. Yes, four months old and only 11 lbs. Compare that to your babies! Yeesh, even Daughter was almost 13 lbs at the same point in her life. Little guy has some catching up to do, but at this point we seem to have figured out his feedings such that he gains at least 1 oz per day, so almost a full pound every two weeks. He's getting there. His therapies are going very well, he is improving in every way. Still lagging in gross motor skills like lifting his head up when on his tummy, but his little neck is skinny and it's hard to lift that big bowling ball noggin. The doctor suggested we start thinking about rice cereal - already?!? But I guess we are reaching that age! I'm praying he will be able to swallow it efficiently and we can start working our way towards 1st foods.

And I am rather proud of myself for making it through 1/3 of AJ's first year pumping breastmilk so he can have it exclusively. I know it's a little nuts, and it takes up a HUGE amount of time and energy, but I breastfed Daughter for 10 months and I'd like to give him at least that much. He refuses to nurse - cries when I offer, which breaks my heart in ways I cannot describe - but I can give him the benefits another way, so I feel I must. Can I keep it up? I will surely try.

I look forward to a new year, and have just a few modest goals (ahem).

  1. Sell house. Oh please, please, please someone buy my house.
  2. Get Daughter into some sort of play/preschool-type program.
  3. Find some time for myself.
  4. Save money, live below our means.
  5. Find happiness in the midst of our chaotic life.
There are more, I'm sure, but those spring to mind. I hope you all had a truly marvelous Christmas/Holiday season and I wish you a beautiful, blessed New Year! Be careful, stay warm, and I'll see you in 2009!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

quick plug

I have listed a few wool soakers on Etsy while I still can. There are two newborn size, and one small. I'm selling them cheap and including parcel post shipping to the lower 48.

Check them out




Friday, December 12, 2008


Last Sunday we went to the annual communion breakfast hosted by our local alumni club. It's the first time I've gone since I was a teenager, and the only reason I went back can be seen below:

This is the same Santa sprinkling "magic dust" in my hand who sprinkled it into my hand when I was Daughter's age. She was enthralled. Wouldn't she have just keeled over to know she ate her eggs and waffles right across from Santa just a few minutes earlier? He is truly the best Santa I've ever seen, and it was all the more special because he knew all of us personally. It was just perfect.

And yes, I an in DIRE need of a haircut, I know. (It has been growing since April...bleh!)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

elfin pants

Well, our son's surgery went great this morning. I was most impressed that it went off on time...and totally blown away by how different outpatient surgery is compared to inpatient-in-the-NICU surgery. First of all, free Beanie Baby when you check in! Neat! Second and third, the scrub nurse just carried him off to the surgical suite in her arms, and after recovery, I carried him back to his room in my arms...no rolling along on a warmer or in a crib. Weird! And then, once we'd fed him some Pedialyte, they just pulled his I.V. and shoo-ed us out the door. The whole shebang, start to finish, took 5 hours.

The audiologist said things look good, and after the swelling goes down he should hear within the normal range for learning speech and language. We won't know if it's perfect until he is at least 1 year, but for now we are thrilled.

So! Onward to the Christmas season!

I have done quite literally nothing to prepare for gift-giving. I did take advantage of the sale prices at Old Navy to get things my own family needs, which I tend to do every year. And last week I got the nutsy idea that I needed to knit some Christmas pants for the wee one. So I did.

These wee elfin pants are based on the pants pattern in Last Minute Knitted Gifts. This pattern is just OK...I'm not thrilled with it. I made a pair of these pants for a friend's baby, to use as soakers/longies, and she said the crotch pulls and there isn't much room in the rear. I now see what she meant. There are no short rows, so no extra space in the bottom area for a big, cloth-diapered baby butt. Also, the shenanigans involved in joining the legs and knitting upward are horrendous. I love these, and he will wear them all month at least, but I won't be using this pattern again.

I made these using leftovers, as we poor people are wont to do (I am on a yarn-buying hiatus at the moment). This is some crimson Patons classic merino, and some pine green Knitpicks wool of the andes, both worsted weight. I made the 0-6 month size, but changed the foldover waistband to a ribbed waistband. Much easier and faster. I have, since taking these photos, crocheted a drawstring to go through the waist for better fit (you can see the eyelet holes).

Love, love, love! And they put me in the Christmas spirit, at least a little. I want more little wool pants for him, so I purchased the original longies pattern from Little Turtle Knits and made a start on a new pair while in the surgical waiting room this morning.

And check out this sibling love-fest! My sweet boy developed some serious "right-head preference" in the NICU because all his care was performed at the right side of his crib, so the muscles in his neck are actually messed up and he does NOT like to turn his head to the left. Part of his therapy is to get him to turn his head that way, so we place everything on his left now - his toys, mirrors...and, yes, people. Say it with me now...awwwwwwwwww!

back to the hospital

Today is ear tube day. We are off to the hospital in 15 minutes. I'm very nervous.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


Oooooh, people. Life is hectic.

I reached a new high yesterday...I ventured out to the library and WalMart with both of my children. It went ok, except it's hard to put much into a shopping cart with a baby carseat in it and a tall gangly 3 year old in the front.

I'm sad to say I've become a Hisser. You know exactly what I mean. I'm now the mom who screams really quietly at my child, who in turn has become That Child Who Will Never Be My Child out in public. You've seen this child...perhaps you have one. This is the child who drags herself across the filthy library carpet on her belly despite repeated hissings to stopitrightnow, or runs away in the parking lot despite a billion warnings that a car could come and squash her flat in a second. I am doing my best, I really am. But my best feels pretty crappy these days.

I am eating crow constantly, I must say. I always told people I wasn't nervous at all about having two children. What's the big deal? Practically everybody does it, and lots of families have many more than two. But then again, maybe not everyone has a son with special needs, who can't just be picked up and nursed while attending to the other child(ren), who has appointments at various offices and hospitals 1 to 3 times a week and physical and occupational therapy 4 times a week, who has to be monitored constantly so he doesn't choke on his own saliva.

On the upside, he hasn't been choking, and forgive me if I am repeating myself, but he no longer has to be on his monitor 24/7 - only when sleeping or out of our sight (like when riding in the car). And I haven't turned on that hideous suction machine in 3.5 weeks. My goal is to never use it ever again. I have researched feeding issues rather extensively and - no surprise - putting something like that in an infant's mouth and throat can lead to serious oral aversion. Anyway, he can cough really well now and clears his airway nicely, so things are improving, albeit at a glacial pace.

The adrenaline has worn off, though. I am starting to really hate waking up at 3 a.m. to feed my peacefully sleeping baby. I sure hope he gains acceptably so we can quit that miserable job. He packed on an ounce a day last week, so let's hope he keeps that up. Still, only 9 lbs, 7 oz at 3 months old is pretty lame. I worry about him so much.

I'm trying not to be selfish. But I am tired. So, so tired. My number one favorite thing to do right now is sleep. And I miss doing the things I like to do. I get to knit a few stitches here and there, but there's no chance of getting out my sewing machine for the foreseeable future...and I want to! My fingers itch to whip up Christmas gifts and quilts and clothes for my kids. I want to blog about fun stuff, and take nice photos to post. I want to have fun and be happy but life feels like 99% work, 1% enjoyment just now.

Eeeeeeeeeeeeehhhhh. This too shall pass.