The Right Perspective

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Emily and Ethan - Best Buds - So Far

The first professional pictures (by JCPenney) of Emily and Ethan - taken when Ethan was one week old.
Ahh...sibling love. Let's hope it lasts.

Isn't she such a ham? Ethan, on the other hand, doesn't seem all that interested.

Little Brother holding onto Big Sister's finger.

I like this, you can still see the hair on Mr. E's back. (It's gone now, but it sure was funny while it lasted!)

More sibling love...and little brother disinterest!

Holding "bwuddah".

One of my favorites.

Mr. E and Miss Em...the dynamic duo!

Going Back In Time...and Pictures

One thing that I always regretted was not taking Emily to have professional photos taken when she was a tiny brand new baby. (Trust me, we've made up for lost time and then some with pictures since then!) I didn't want to make the same mistake this time, so we took Ethan in for some pictures when he was one week old. All of the following photos were taken by JCPenney. (We own the copyright now.)

Above: My absolute favorite...cradled in Dad's hands.

I always wondered how people got pictures like this with newborns. Turns out, you have to have a laid-back baby. (No wonder I couldn't figure out how that worked when we had Miss Em!)

This one (Above)

just cracks us up. If you've ever seen "Seinfeld", Ethan's pose is reminiscent of George's pose in the "Timeless art of seduction" episode!

I wonder what he's thinking?

Tiny feet in momma's hands.

Just hangin' out, relaxing with his little self.

Sunday, August 23, 2009


Well, it's been an eventful week. As I look around my house, it looks like absolutely nothing got done and a particularly destructive tornado hit most of the rooms. The laundry has piled up again. This is mostly due to the fact that I spend any laundry time trying to keep up with Ethan's spit up...

Which brings me to the newest development: Mr. E is no longer just spitting up, he's moved on to bigger and better (?) things...projectile vomitting.

The first time it happened, I believe it was after he had been crying pretty hard while I was trying to get ready after my shower. He was fed, changed and otherwise clean and healthy, but just angry that I had to put him down for a few minutes. He cried and cried and then projectile vomitted all over his (just bathed, I believe) self. Not just a little spit up this time, but very mobile puking. Oh what fun.

Over the next 3-4 days, he continued to have at least one or two episodes of projectile vomitting in addition to his already copious spit-up. Since he is already on Zantac for acid reflux and the vomitting was getting worse, I made yet another trip in to the pediatrician, with both kids in tow.

Of course our usual pedi. wasn't in (we almost never hit a day when she's in despite the fact that she's in the office 4 days a week), so we saw another doctor. He examined Mr. E and talked with me (all while Emily never stopped talking and Ethan was crying). The doctor finally said that he thought we should do an upper GI for Ethan and that, if he hadn't eaten in two hours, we could probably do it right away. Well, as luck would have it, it had just been two hours since I last fed Mr. E and the hospital could fit us in, so off we went.

After walking nearly a mile through the hospital while carrying a 10 lb. baby in a 10 lb. or so carrier, and trying to keep Emily moving with me, we finally made it to radiology....where no one could find the order that was supposed to be faxed to them. We waited (with a hungry baby who wasn't allowed to eat) and a hungry nearly 5 year old who had no food to eat (it was lunch time) and me, who was hungry as well and trying to keep both kids from totally losing it.

The doctor's orders were finally found (about an hour later) and we proceded back to the radiology room where the techs immediately informed me that Emily could not be in the room with us. This is where the hungry Miss Em and the angry Mr. E both lost it. I had to literally choose which kid to stay with, and since both were in tears and I wanted to know what the test would show, I needed to stay with Ethan. So, I did my best to reassure Emily that the nurse would take good care of her and that I would not leave her and she left, with a quivering chin and tears in her eyes. Mr. E kept crying.

In short, the more serious condition that the Doctor wanted to rule out was indeed, ruled out and no structural abnormalities were found after the barium swallow (yuck!). However the doctor seems to think that significant acid reflux (GERD) is the cause of Mr. E's troubles. His solutions, however, leave me feeling rather uncomfortable.

Basically the options were to A.) thicken his milk with rice cereal, which is pretty darn near impossible to do unless I pump every feeding, and which I have since read, is no longer an accepted treatment for reflux as it only seems to reduce spit-up but not the acid, and may actual make it more likely that Mr. E would aspirate his spit-up, or B.) give him a medicine called Reglan, which helps empty the stomach faster, leaving less to spit up, but again, not really fixing the underlying problem of too much acid. Along with not really fixing the problem, Reglan has some pretty serious potential side effects, in particular neurological ones such as uncontrollable twitching, which I am highly uncomfortable with, since anyone who has ever spent much time around an infant can tell you, they already twitch a lot, so I'm not sure how I would distinguish a problem in time.

So, all in all, I think I'm not going to use the Reglan and will probably try to talk with my regular doctor and ask about something a lot less controversial to try first, like Prevacid or Prilosec...or even formula.

This parenting thing is hard. It's hard to try to make the right decisions when you just want your child to not be in pain. I can only begin to imagine the decisions that parents of very ill children face every day.

It reminds me that I am very, very blessed...and yes, the house is still a mess and may stay that way for the forseeable future, but our kids are healthy and generally happy and that's what really matters in the end.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

One Month Old (a Day Late!)

You are one month old today. (8-17-09)
Hopefully we will take pictures just like this in your crib each month and watch you as you grow.
You weren't too sure about this photo session and were a bit less than thrilled, so this is the best picture we got.
You seem to enjoy bath time and hardly fuss at all. We keep a nice warm wet washcloth on you and spray you with the shower to keep you comfy. You are pretty laid-back.

After bathtime, we wrap you up in your puppy towel and make you all warm and cozy and cuddly.

I'm pretty sure you like being cuddled in your towel! You even have a bit of a smile in this picture.

Did I mention that you're easy-going? Here you are asleep on mommy's lap, in your "thinker" pose. You like to sleep...and that makes us all very happy.

This month, you have:
* Grown from 7 lbs. 14 oz. to just about 10 lbs.
* Started to sleep up to 5 hours at a time at night (not often, but once in a while)
* Started smiling at us (not just in your dreams)
* Sometimes you actually laugh out loud when you sleep
* Nearly outgrown the newborn size diapers
* Worn almost all of what we thought was an extensive wardrobe, multiple times, due to extensive spit-up from reflux (yikes!)
* Caused daddy and mommy to change their clothes multiple times, due to the same spit-up issues. Mommy is very greatful for the new, huge-capacity washer and dryer
* Found your hands and you love to suck on them. I think you really prefer them to the pacifier
* Love to swing, but still aren't sold on riding in the car. Sorry buddy, but you're going to have to get used to that one!
* Officially made us a family of four
My favorite thing about this month? Definitely the on-purpose smiles. They make all the late nights and crying worth it. Very worth it.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Just For Laughs

I've seen church bulletin bloopers before but these are new and pretty enjoy!!

Those Wonderful Church Bulletins Thank God for volunteer church ladies. These sentences actually appeared in church bulletins or were announced in church services (Summer, 2008 Release). ----------------------------------------------------------

1. The Fasting & Prayer Conference includes meals.

2. The sermon this morning: 'Jesus Walks on Water.' The sermon tonight: 'Searching for Jesus.' ----------------------------------------------------------

3.Our youth basketball team is back in action Wednesday at 8 PM in the recreation hall. Come out and watch us kill Christ the King. ----------------------------------------------------------
4.Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Bring your husbands. ----------------------------------------------------------

5.The peacemaking meeting scheduled for today has been cancelled due to a conflict. ----------------------------------------------------------

6.Remember in prayer the many who are sick of our community. Smile at someone who is hard to love. Say 'Hell' to someone who doesn't care much about you. ---------------------------------------------------------

7.Don't let worry kill you off - let the Church help. ---------------------------------------------------------

8.Miss Charlene Mason sang 'I will not pass this way again,' giving obvious pleasure to the congregation. ----------------------------------------------------------

9.For those of you who have children and don't know it, we have a nursery downstairs.. ----------------------------------------------------------

10.Next Thursday there will be tryouts for the choir. They need all the help they can get. ----------------------------------------------------------

11.The Rector will preach his farewell message after which the choir will sing: 'Break Forth Into Joy.' ---------------------------------------------------------

12. Irving Benson and Jessie Carter were married on October 24 in the church. So ends a friendship that began in their school days. ------------------------------------------------

13.A bean supper will be held on Tuesday evening in the church hall. Music will follow. --------------------------------------------------

14.At the evening service tonight, the sermon topic will be 'What Is Hell?' Come early and listen to our choir practice.---------------------------------------------------------

15.Eight new choir robes are currently needed due to the addition of several new members and to the deterioration of some older ones. ---------------------------------------------------------

16.Scouts are saving aluminum cans, bottles and other items to be recycled. Proceeds will be used to cripple children. ---------------------------------------------------------

17.Please place your donation in the envelope along with the deceased person you want remembered. ---------------------------------------------------------

18.The church will host an evening of fine dining, super entertainment and gracious hostility. -------------------------------------------------

19.Potluck supper Sunday at 5:00 PM - prayer and medication to follow.. -----------------------------------------------

20.The ladies of the Church have cast off clothing of every kind. They may be seen in the basement on Friday afternoon. ----------------------------------------------------------

21.This evening at 7 PM there will be a hymn singing in the park across from the Church. Bring a blanket and come prepared to sin. ---------------------------------------------------------

22. Ladies Bible Study will be held Thursday morning at 10 AM. All ladies are invited to lunch in the Fellowship Hall after the B. S. is done. ----------------------------------------------------------

23.The pastor would appreciate it if the ladies of the congregation would lend him their electric girdles for the pancake breakfast next Sunday. --------------------------------------------

24.Low Self Esteem Support Group will meet Thursday at 7 PM. Please use the back door. ---------------------------------------------------------

25. The eighth-graders will be presenting Shakespeare's Hamlet in the Church basement Friday at 7 PM. The congregation is invited to attend this tragedy. ----------------------------------------------------------

26.Weight Watchers will meet at 7 PM at the First Presbyterian Church. Please use large double door at the side entrance. ----------------------------------------------------------

27.The Associate Minister unveiled the church's new tithing campaign slogan:Last Sunday: ''I Upped My Pledge - Up Yours'

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

New Normal

Adjusting to life with two kids is going fairly well, but it's still an adjustment. Some days, Ethan is so quiet that I can almost forget he's here for a few minutes. Other days, there's definitely no forgetting.

We are quite seriously considering the possibility that little brother has a milk/dairy intolerance. Every time I have something with obvious dairy (ice cream/cheese for example) he spends hours with his little legs drawn up, screaming in what seems like pain. I got suspicious after I had ice cream one day and he spent the next 7 hours or so screaming. It was such a change in behavior that I knew something was hurting him. I tried cutting out dairy (which is much much harder than I would have expected) and then a few days ago, I had one slice of cheese on a sandwich and just like before, he spent the evening screaming. It was the same kind of experience that we had with Emily when she had colic; hours of uncontrollable screaming, a completely inconsolable baby in pain and two very frazzled parents. I was in tears just praying that this wasn't the start of another 3 month round of colic.

Thankfully, it seems like we're dealing with more of a dairy issue, which while challenging and frustrating, at least can be fixed. It's a new normal for me, as almost every single thing that I cook involves some sort of cheese, milk or butter (or all three) and nearly every convenience/pre-packaged food has milk ingredients. It's a bit overwhelming during an already overwhelming change to have to spend so much time and effort reading labels and trying to figure out what I can and can't eat. I have to admit that I'm rather afraid of accidentally eating something that will hurt Ethan, not to mention the fact that I feel sort of guilty thinking that Em probably had a similar problem (although she also definitely had colic) and I didn't realize it.

So, that's our update for now. If anyone has any good milk/cheese free recipes that they want to share, feel free...I'm going to need them, as well as any prayers you can spare. Nothing sounds quite so good as that which is totally off-limits!

Sunday, August 09, 2009

While Brother Sleeps...

While little brother sleeps soundly in his swing (great investment this time around)...
Big Sister plays with his play mat...Silly girl!

Bob the cat sleeps on the lower level of the play pen (under the changing table portion)....

And Puma sleeps above on the changing table. (Usually it's the other way around.)

Very helpful, cats, very helpful.

Wide Awake this is my hand! Now if only I could get it to do something!

Monday, August 03, 2009


Some very nice Great-grandpeople came to visit Ethan and Emily (and I suppose mom and dad too, but we're just background noise at the moment!) this Saturday.
As you can see, Ethan was greatly impressed.

He was passed around to great-grandparents, grandparents, an aunt and a big sister. He didn't wake up once.

Above, a WWII vet and a 2 week vet.

I love this picture (below). Ethan is being held by great-grandpa, his hand is in great-grandma's hand.

And just for fun, big sis Em, still happy with little brother.