Thursday, March 25, 2010
His favorite things are his family. Mom and Dad and Owen all get great smiles, grins, and squeals of delight. He certainly knows us, and I think he now knows Nana, Papa, and Grandma very well (big thanks for all the grandparent help we've gotten this past month). Josh has had some "mommy moments," but for the most part is still pretty content with anyone that is speaking kindly and holding with loving arms.
This month, Josh has:
...discovered the mesmerizing power of the television...
... learned to balance in the sitting position for seconds at a time...
... tried and rejected rice cereal, and instead decided that he'd rather just nurse way more frequently than his mom would prefer...
... found his hands and is figuring out how to make them move the way he wants to. Right now, that means mostly directly into his mouth, resulting in red, wrinkled fingers and drool, drool, drool...
... smoothly transitioned to new reflux medication. He doesn't seem to be having the tummy discomfort, but the baby spit-up is frequent and plentiful...
... embraced the after dinner acrobatics. His skills so far involve slow backwards flips, light tosses, and superman moves...
...decided that sleeping long stretches at night is totally overrated. We were attributing the hourly wake-ups to Josh being sick last week, but now he is perfectly healthy and still making sure to get us out of bed 5-6-8 times a night. Mom and Dad are struggling with the sleep deprivation, but Josh is surviving just fine because he's managed to settle into a predictable napping routine. This month, we're moving the baby sleeper out of our room and praying that convinces Josh that sleeping is a virtue...
... continued to charm us day in and day out.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
The other morning, Josh was chilling on the bed while Owen got dressed. Owen then requested that I cover them both up with the blanket and I watched with delight as the two of them snuggled in their own little world for a few minutes.
Owen was whispering over and over, "You're my sweetie, sweetheart. Sweetheart Josh-a-roo. You're my big sweetie." Of course with Owen's inability to pronounce the "sw" combination, the whole thing sounded like, "You're my fweetie, fweetheart. Fweetheart Josh-a-roo." I can't imagine it would get much better than that.
Monday, March 22, 2010
This is the year of the family fitness challenge - all of us Maxwells have chosen a fitness goal to accomplish in 2010. I'm running a half marathon, which has been one of my life goals for quite some time. It will be challenging to find the time to do the training, but I think it will be really good to have a goal to work for, so that I can't take the easy excuses to avoid getting back in shape.
I have been getting psyched up and prepared - researched the options and decided on a local race in October, bought new shoes for Valentine's Day, signed up for a running group in town, received new running clothes for my birthday and found a sports bra to fit the nursing body. I'm all set! Except for the RUNNING part. I haven't run AT ALL since before Owen was born. No wait, since before I was pregnant with Owen. So that means it's been 3+ years. That's intimidating.
But, you've gotta start somewhere, so on Sunday afternoon, we were getting ready to take the boys and dog for a walk and I decided to just put on my running shoes and take Hudson for a little jog. Gulp. It wasn't pretty, it wasn't fast, but it also wasn't as bad as I expected. I managed a 10-4-9 (minutes running-walking-running), and I can still move today. Decent start.
Though I did sustain my first running injury. Hudson took an abrupt stop to mark a bush and, in my blazing speed, my thumb had an unfortunate encounter with the dog leash. Let's hope this is the worst injury I sustain over the next 7 months of running...
Thursday, March 18, 2010
On our family vacations last spring, Sara and I would make up two plates of food for Calla and Owen. Owen would eat 2, maybe 3 bites, and then we could hand his plate across the table to help satisfy Calla's unending appetite.
I think Owen survived the summer on fruit, crackers, and warm milk in a sippy cup.
At Owen's 2 year check-up last summer. I asked our Pediatrician if I should be concerned that Owen ate nothing. He quickly and sincerely said, "Absolutely not. Most 2-year olds don't eat. They may go 2-3 days just nibbling bites and then they'll have that day where they eat everything in sight." We're still waiting for that day.
Owen will not eat eggs unless they are in a baked good.
When Owen moved to his new "school" last summer, he spent the first couple weeks only eating one or two bites at snack and lunchtime. Miss Lauren was super excited to tell me the day that he ate half of his sandwich (already half sized) and half a cheese stick. Progress! I also found out recently that he generally doesn't eat breakfast after I drop him off. Too busy playing to be bothered by food. At least they serve homemade muffins and fruit for morning snack.
Having a non-eater was great during pregnancy. I always had extra snacks lying around in the form of Owen's leftovers.
Owen's weight held steady at 24.5 pounds for at least 6, probably 8 or 9 months. I was so excited to see the scale read 26 pounds in January. A weight gain that I can only attribute to the terrible habit we had gotten into: "If you eat three more bites of X, you can have a treat." That results in 3 more bites of nutritious calories and the dessert calories to boot.
Owen loves peas. As long as they are frozen.
We've also developed a second terrible habit since Josh was born. I'm okay whipping up a separate meal for Owen when the family dinner isn't going to sit with his toddler palate. That's why we have frozen meatballs and chicken nuggets. But, in our unwillingness to put a foot down, we started making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches anytime Owen objected to the dinner we put on the table. That had to stop. Dinner is dinner. Eat it (hopefully) or be hungry.
However, I am proud to report... progress has been made. It might be only temporary, but in the last week we have seen:
- After giving him a set of chopsticks, Owen ate a toddler sized portion of sausage/pepper stir fry. I made a mental note to put a chopstick worthy meal on every week's menu.
- After asking Owen to raise his spoon and "cheers" his soup to me, he gobbled up more than a dozen bites of hearty vegetable-barley soup. Scott also "cheers"-ed Owen into eating a passable sized helping of Asian turkey wraps.
- Not one dinner in the last two weeks has been surrendered for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. We are holding our ground.
Tonight, dinner time rolled around with Owen throwing a tantrum because he wanted to eat lunch and not dinner. (I figured out this was his sneaky ploy to get a PB&J.) I held my ground and convinced Owen to help me mix the squash pasta and assemble his plate of food. Then, beyond all expectation, Owen ate his whole plate of pasta without any cajoling or prodding on my part. And then... a miracle of godly proportions happened... "Mom, a little more pasta, please." Seriously? He asked for seconds? And said please? I nearly passed out. So, another plate of pasta appeared, Owen started eating, and mentioned that he might need even more. Who is this child?
We would love to see this trend continue. At this rate, Owen might grow into his 2T clothing before he hits age 3...
Friday, March 12, 2010
... joining the family at the dinner table (only 20 years to go Josh... but maybe we'll give you some delicious rice cereal next month)
... acrobatics after dinner (Owen balances for half a second, then flings himself backwards and yells "I want do it, A-GAIN" before his feet have hit the ground
... and finding yummy cookie treats "hiding" on the counter.
Thursday, March 11, 2010
Yes, those are orange safety goggles that have become Owen's favorite accessory. The other night, they magically gave Owen the ability to devour his dinner. It was either the goggles or the privilege of eating with chop sticks. Either way, stir fry (and safety goggles) are going to be on the menu every week for a while.
I just wish the magic goggles would make Josh feel better, too. We're now on day 6 of this nasty, goobery cold. The drooling and hacking seem to be subsiding, so hopefully he's well enough to enter back into the world tomorrow. I can tell he's trying to be such a trooper, but just feels rotten. I couldn't even get a smile out of him today. We would like to quickly replace this sad (but oh, so cute) face:
With this happy kiddo as soon as possible.
Tuesday, March 09, 2010
A couple additional notes from Josh’s 4 month doctor visit:
Josh was 12 pounds, 1 ounce and 23 ½ inches. Both are right there in the 3-5%, just like Owen. As we have said before: In our family, one size fits all! Though even with same size babies, I’m finding that the clothes I saved from 2 years ago don’t necessarily work the same on Josh. Owen must have been long in the torso, and Josh has long limbs. Any one-piece outfits with feet are a real challenge – he’s already into 6 month sizes of those – but the 0-3 month onesies are still fitting fine. Owen was exactly the opposite. He wore newborn and 3 month pants well into his 6th month. Every baby is different!
We did decide to switch Josh to the Prevacid medicine that Owen was on for his reflux. Our pediatrician (who wants to specialize in pediatric GI – just what we need!), said that our bodies will adjust to the Zantac after a few months, so we need to move him to a different type of medication if he’s still having reflux. On one hand, we feel like his reflux is manageable (but messy). On the other hand, I’m still not able to eat any tomatoes, lemon, oranges, or anything else mildly acidic (I hope I don’t get scurvy!), so he’s clearly still having some challenges. Of course, we still have 60 day supply of Prevacid left over from Owen (which I also took during pregnancy), so we can do a “free test” and find out if the new meds make a difference.
And, following Maxwell’s Law, Josh was feeling great during our doctor visit and then took a nasty turn downhill. He had a really rough weekend – cranky, gassy, gurgling, and not eating well. We ruled out any lasting effects from the vaccines, and can’t think of anything new in my diet, so at this point, it’s just a waiting game. Thankfully, Josh has the sweetest, quietest cry, so the crankiness isn’t giving us a headache, but Josh is totally hoarse. What’s sadder than a crying baby? A crying baby who can’t really make any sound because he’s hoarse. Poor kiddo! We’re surviving the daytime pretty well – Josh is happy in the Moby wrap, taking walks, and being outside – but the nights are brutal. He’s been spitting up, gurgling, snorting, and generally not sleeping more than an hour at a time. Sunday night, Scott and I we both lost count how often we got out of bed, but last night was an improvement – he was ONLY up 6 times! Hooray?
Oh well. If this is the worst Josh has thrown at us, we’re pretty lucky. He’s generally such an agreeable baby, and the lack of sleep just gives me an excuse to stop for a latte on the way to work.
Friday, March 05, 2010
Owen at 4 1/2 months:
Josh at 3 1/2 months:
Dad and Owen at 5 1/2 months:
Dad and Josh at 4 months:
I think it's a good thing we have all our pictures sorted by year and month or we will never be able to look back and figure out who is who!
Wednesday, March 03, 2010
Owen's imagination has really taken off recently. He recently set up a "train" in our living room and spent the day pretending to take all his toys on a trip to the beach - he gathered blankets for sitting in the sand and blocks to use as surfboards. And the last few days we have driven to school in our "car-boat," spying octopus and sharks, or hopped in a rocket ship to blast off toward "planet school." I love that he can set aside the toddler OCD for a bit and explore the world we are creating with our ideas and words. And it's really FUN!
He is so proud of his "funny face" and always asks me, "Mom, is this funny?"
Owen's other big thing is to pretend to be a tiger or a scary ghost - complete with roars and boos! We also recently went through a spell where he wanted to pretend to be the mom while I was the boy. Unfortunately, he never made lunch, did the dishes, or changed a diaper during that time...
His standard cheesy grin. I love it! And Owen loves seeing the pictures on the camera after we take them. He also loves looking at pictures on the computer and gets a kick out of guessing whether a picture is of Baby Owen or Baby Josh.
Thankfully, Owen's eating habits have improved since last summer, but we would in no way classify him as a "good" eater. Breakfast is generally a hit, we've found a standard lunch rotation, and dinner is about 50/50. Owen's favorite foods are peanut butter and jelly (for all three meals), chicken nuggets, oranges, warm milk, peaches, shredded cheese, cherry tomatoes, crackers of all kind, and granola bars. He's also recently discovered the joys of both cookies and candy and is often negotiating how much of his dinner he needs to eat to get a treat (we're working to change that...).
Owen still loves being my helper in the kitchen - stirring baked goods, pouring ingredients, running the mixer or blender, mixing mac n' cheese, mashing bananas, tearing lettuce, etc. He also still loves doing the dishes and sometimes even gets something clean.
We have the standard 2-year old behavior going on and are finding the need to really pick our discipline battles. Because Owen is such a good talker, it's easy to forget that he's still only 2 and doesn't always has the ability to control his actions. We use time-outs fairly successfully when his actions might be harmful (to self, others, or property), but the bigger challenge is dealing with whining and now angry yelling, as in "I want it RIGHT NOW!" We're trying to emphasize that mom and dad can't listen to yelling or angry words and not respond until he can calm down and ask with "kind words" but I'm sure this is just the beginning...
Owen no longer uses the binky. He sleeps with a snuggly blanket and two stuffed animals, but it's more out of habit than necessity (though blankie and doggie do travel with us).
When Owen gets up early, he now comes to snuggle in our bed. Unfortunately, he doesn't ever lie still or fall asleep, so it's more of a 15 minute exercise in trying to ignore the little whispers saying, "I want get milk." and "I want watch TV."
Owen is a BIG fan of the television. Since Josh was born, we started slipping into a habit of way too much television, and consequently way too much whining when it was time to turn the TV off. So we adjusted the plan and now Owen needs to be dressed before watching part of Curious George or Sesame Street while I'm feeding Josh, and he gets to watch whatever's on Nick Jr for the 20 minutes before dinner. Weekends are much more lax and usually include a Sunday evening movie... because we all need it!
At the same time, Owen loves being outside. He's taken to climbing on the fence at the front of our driveway and yelling a story to the world. He's also getting better at riding his Christmas tricycle - to the point that we have taken 30 minute walks with him riding and me packing Josh. He's also starting to figure out the strider/balance bike, and will probably be proficient by summer. Come on warm weather!
And last, but not least, Owen is still an amazing big brother. Entertaining Josh when I ask, giving lots of hugs and kisses, helping get Josh up from his naps, choosing clothes, and generally exhibiting sheer joy whenever he's around his little brother. We are blessed to be the parents of these two amazing kiddos!