Thursday, October 28, 2010

book casualty

One of Rhys's favorite books finally bit the dust. As you can see it was well loved. I don't think he'll miss it necessarily, but I will have to dig another out of the pile to be sacrificed to the oatmeal smears.

And this is typical of the kids playing. Zoe and Rhys both roll all over the place. And never mind whatever who whoever is in the way.

Today Rhys is 27.5 months old and Zoe is 7.5 months old.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

my house is a mess, um, lived in

I am at last experiencing the joys of having a child that gets into everything. Rhys might not be walking but he sure can make one heck of a mess. My house constantly looks like this.

Top to bottom. Not sure exactly how that happens since the kids are confined to the floor, but it does in fact always look like it needs to be cleaned. I am not at all a neat freak, but I do like things to be put away. But alas that just isn't how my family functions. After five years of marriage (oh, and children) I am still trying to resign myself to the fact that my neat and tidy days are on hiatus. Hopefully not forever.

Rhys is sick. As a dog. It's a bit of allergies with a cold mixed in. And it's bad. I am talking buckets and buckets of that clear white gunk that hides in the nose. It is t.e.r.r.i.b.l.e. He can't breathe, can't sleep, and coughs like a mad man, which incidentally makes him furious when he has a lengthy coughing spell. I am breaking the no meds for children under age six rules and giving him children's mucinex. It does seem to be working, but I still wish it would expedite the recovery process. I do not know how many more nights of hearing him snore and wheeze on the baby monitor I can take. I'm scared to turn it down too low for fear of not hearing him so I hear him all night long. Now we just wait to see if Zoe gets it. Ugh, I do not relish the thought of having them both sick.

And just in case you're wondering, Rhys hasn't forgotten how to drink from a straw. I was almost scared he would. I am still amazed every time I watch him do it. Up until now the only liquid he really got was milk/pediasure when he had a bottle. I'd offer him water, tea or sometimes juice frequently but he never drank much because it was difficult for him to regulate the open cup. Yesterday alone he drank about 8 ounces with the straw. I'm hoping this will be a good opportunity for more calories. I'd rather him drink mostly water but the kid needs calories, and he loves tea, so I usually let him have it. He isn't much on juice, but if he was I'm sure I could find some really good, high calorie ones for him to have. I'm trying to figure out how to use this development to our benefit and push a new eating strategy on for him. Problem is I don't have one quite yet, I'm still working on it...

Friday, October 22, 2010


Holy crap, Rhys can drink from a straw! I can not even tell you what a big deal this is for our household. He is still trying to figure out how to regulate the flow, but OMG he is drinking from a straw!!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

happy seven months, Zoe!

We finally got the doctor sign-off for all of Rhys's equipment. The medical supply rep is coming this week to measure for his gait trainer. I'm so super excited to get this puppy! I don't think it's going to be easy to get Rhys to focus his attention on it, but the potential of mobility for him has me all aflutter.

We are also purchasing Rhys a seating mobility system. These systems are normally used by those who can't utilize a typical stroller, which Rhys can and does, however we do not know whether Rhys will be required to have one to go to school next year. So since we are going through the rigmarole of ordering the other various things we are ordering this as well. If you've not had to go through this process with your insurance suffice it to say that it is a drawn out lenghty process you do not wish to repeat unnecessarily. While Rhys maybe not strictly need the mobility part of it he will certainly gain some benefit from seat positioning. Rhys's unwillingness to sit is a result of his torso not being properly positioned above his hips. Make no mistake, he can do it he just doesn't want to. It is easier for him to lean back and use his "tone" pattern so he takes the path of least resistance. The idea in this case isn't to make him comfortable in the seating system. It is to force him to align his body properly, break out of his tone pattern and strenghten the muscles that will allow him to sit properly.

Last piece of the puzzle for now is his AFOs. We go in two weeks to get his foot molded for these braces. I hope they help in the way I think they will. Rhys's feet are more often in a slightly pointed position than not which is a result of his tone. The AFOs will force his feet into the proper position, again, to make his muscles break out of the tone pattern so they can strenghten and be used properly. When Rhys stands flat-footed he is obviously much more stable than when he tries to stand on his tip toes. Hopefully all these things together will significantly help his motor skills.

Overall, Rhys's development is moving right along. He really is a clever little guy. His comprehension level is high, he just doesn't have a great ability to verbally communicate yet. Though the speech pathologist says the mouth muscles are getting stronger, which will help is speech. Speaking of the SP, part of that whole effort is to get Rhys to suck properly from a straw. He has been closing his lips around the straw as he should and he can actually drink from a straw, but it is mostly accidental at this point. He still hasn't made the connection of sucking to get liquid. We'd previously been using the sippy bear cup, which allows you to squeeze liquid out much like a juice box. But as you can imagine that is only confusing in this instance as Rhys isn't having to work for anything, it just appears in his mouth. So we've quit using that all together and he only gets an open cup or the straw presented to him for liquids other than milk. He will figure this out, it is just as with everything else - this is going to be something he has to do on his own. No amount of prodding is going to make him get it more quickly.

And speaking of drinking from a straw, Zoe figured that out yesterday. It is amazing to see what a quick study she is in all things. Cody and I can not believe how quickly she picks things up. Not to sing the praises of my child, I do not feel she is any more gifted than another, it is just a comparison to Rhys's learning process. She also can almost feed herself a bottle. She can't quite support the weight when it's full, and she doesn't quite get the raise/lower concept, but she isn't far off. Rhys still refuses to give himself a bottle, so imagine having to do that for 2+ years. :) Oh, and Zoe is sort of turning herself when she's on her tummy, but she hasn't quite found anything interesting enough to make her move forward. She is still trying to figure out how to get those legs underneath her, but she's just recently become interested in wanting to grab and touch everything she sees. We are currently at that in between stage where she is is incredibly inquisitive, but not yet mobile.

Friday, October 15, 2010

October 15th

Today is national pregnancy and infant loss awareness day. We miss our baby boy like crazy and think about him every single day. But we know he is keeping great company. I find it unbelievably sad that parents lose their children prematurely so often there needs to be a month of recognition.

Monday, October 11, 2010

groceries, food fights and a wedding

The kids at the grocery store this afternoon. Apparently the balloon hander-outer saw Rhys eyeing the balloons so he walked over to give him one. Zoe started grabbing at Rhys's so Cody went and got her one of her own. Zoe still wasn't happy and kept grabbing for Rhys's, which he was not happy about. Any time her hand crossed to his half of the buggy he kindly picked it up and put it back to her side. He's funny that way.

Cody and I have been continually fighting with Rhys on the food front. I have been making most of Zoe's baby food lately, which is a great opportunity to try new foods with Rhys. Rhys still doesn't chew properly so his food needs to be a certain texture so when I make a batch for Zoe I make Rhys try it too. I'm trying at least one new food every day with him in attempt to break through his unwillingness to deviate from the norm. It is good stuff, not the jarred food, so he should enjoy eating it. But that isn't the case. He is a clever little dude and has figured out that if he doesn't close his mouth he doesn't have to swallow. He has even started raking his fingers in his mouth to clean it out. GRRR. Used to if we got a bite in his mouth he'd swallow, but not so anymore. I think his allergies are making him crazy. He has a cough, and very slight drainage. But it's enough to make him refuse just about everything we offer him. It's also enough to set off his puking. I think we've changed his bedding three of the last four nights. Have I mentioned how tired I am of cleaning up puke?!

We had a country wedding last weekend. I guess more specifically it was a wedding that occurred in the country. My SIL and I stood alongside a field of these guys...

... trying to keep the kids quiet. I stole these pics from my BIL by the way, thanks B! Anyway, the picture of the longhorn was snapped and immediately it charged the fence. Lots of fun. But all kidding aside, the wedding was absolutely beautiful.
I just wish the mosquitoes would have have gotten the vacate notice because Rhys ended up with eleven bites, mostly on his face and neck. Yes, I counted. I felt like a terrible mother.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

to the zoo we go

Today was our first family trip to the zoo. We purchased a membership with the intention of making this a frequent thing for the kids.

We started out by watching the seals sea lions put on a short show. Zoe kept leaning over to check things out. Rhys was bothered by the sun in his eyes and quickly lost interest.
The last time I'd been to the zoo was about five years ago when I did a volunteer project with the company I used to work for. And, Cody hadn't been since he was a kid. So it was kind of exciting.

The weather was beautiful - sunny, with a clear blue sky and a high of upper 80s. Rhys and Zoe both did great strolling around. I was excited for them to get out and about for a "typical" experience, since we don't always get a lot of those.

Despite staying out past their usual nap time they weren't horribly cranky. Zoe can and will sleep just about anywhere if she gets too tired. Rhys is my wild card and will normally hold off falling asleep until he gets into his bed. Overall, a great time!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Rhys is mobile! Sort of...

Rhys continues to refine his modified army crawl. He isn't all over the house, but he can certainly get to and from whatever toy (or lamp cord or shoe or remote) he sees that strikes his fancy. He hasn't really left the confines of the living room, but I'm sure that day will come. He is using mostly his upper body to pull himself, but he really is trying to get those legs beneath him. It really breaks my heart to see him grabbing at his legs willing them to move. But, I am hopeful this is like everything else in that it just hasn't clicked for him because I know his legs are capable of more movement. We're making another push towards food variety with Rhys. And we're having a tough go at it. His latest trick is to keep his mouth open, refusing to close it and swallow the food. All while screaming mind you. I've never seen such a hard-headed toddler. Sheesh.

Cody and I took the kids to the pedi for their well baby visits yesterday. Rhys started wailing before we even made it to the exam room. After his two shots Zoe was crying and screamed through her four. Lots of tears were shed. But, the kids are all caught up now and all of us now have had our flu shots. Rhys is about 30th percentile for height/weight and Zoe is 60th for height and 75th for weight.

Zoe is oh so close to sitting on her own. She does it perfectly while in her high chair, but when you put her on the floor she isn't so willing. We attempted 6 month pics for her last Friday, but they didn't go so well so we're having to reschedule.

Friday, October 1, 2010