Monday, March 23, 2015

3 months!

Vivien is still in an eat-sleep-eat-sleep routine.   She stays awake for only short periods of time still, but certainly more frequently.  She now sits up in the corner of the couch or lays on a blanket for a while and looks around to see what's happening.  But if we keep her awake for too long, she lets us know by getting very fussy.  When she is awake, she smiles a whole lot.  It doesn't take much at all to get a huge toothless grin out of her.

She is a pretty good sleeper at night too.  She usually naps downstairs in the evening until we're ready for bed, between 10 and 11 most nights.  I feed her a little, but shes usually ready for her nighttime sleep at that point.  Many nights she sleeps straight through til 4-5am, sometimes a little earlier, sometimes a little later.  After I feed her around 7am, Ryder and I go downstairs and she sleeps in the bassinet for a couple hours more.

A couple of times this month, and even before, she has rolled onto her side.  I would say that it's always the left side.  Once this past month, she rolled all the way onto her stomach.  She would probably try that more if I was able to let her hang out on the floor more, but Ryder can be a little dangerous with his affection if she's unattended!  She has also lost a lot of hair this month, in all the places that her head rubs on the mattress so far.  Her eyes are still blue at this point and we're not quite sure which direction they're headed.  I guess we'll wait and see.
Love that toothless grin!

She stays up pretty well on her own.

Arms and legs are always moving, just like Ryder.

Just chillin'

That little face!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

23 Months!

Inching our way closer to 2 years old!!  It's pretty crazy to think that later this month it will have been 2 years since he was born.  It seems like yesterday, but on the other hand so much has happened since then!

His speaking skills continue to improve.  He is saying more and more 2 word combinations- last month he started adding "other" to words, this month he has been combining people and things to show possession.  He loves to point out "Daddy cup" and "Mommy elbow" and so on and so forth.

He really enjoys throwing balls. We got him a basketball hoop for Christmas, and he likes putting the ball in the hoop, but mostly he loves throwing balls all over.  He will throw them across the room, or he'll sit next to a wall and bounce it off the wall back to himself.  He is building cars with his Legos by himself now and then he pushes them around the floor.  His favorite winter activity so far is shoveling, followed closely by sledding.  He takes the little car shovel and pushes snow around the driveway and street.  If he sees the shovel on the way to or from the car, he loses his mind when he can't shovel then and there!

Now before bed he helps pick up the living room and dining room.  When I say "Let's pick up" he starts grabbing things and putting them away.  He knows right where almost everything goes.  He is also showing more interest in his clothes.  He will let us know when he wants to keep on his PJ's or wear his choo-choo shirt.  He also tries to help Vivien when she's upset.  If he hears her crying in the kitchen or on the monitor, he wants me to go get her right away.  If she is in her car seat and crying, he will rock it to try to comfort her.

He has his four front teeth top and bottom, plus his four molars are firmly established now.  I'm pretty sure some other teeth will be coming soon, because all of a sudden he is drooling a lot again.


He sat down for about a minute this time...

then it was up and at 'em!

Goofing around on the couch.

 Chilling out in the back of his truck.

On the move in his truck.

We've been seeing this face a lot lately!

He loves his cars, or trucks, as he calls them.

Monday, February 16, 2015

2 months!

Little miss Vivien is 2 months old now.  Not too much has changed- she is still very much in the newborn stage.  There's a lot of eating and sleeping going on here.  She's up to 10 lbs and 5 oz, a very healthy 2 lb gain in the past month!  She usually eats every 3 hours or so, but many evenings she wants to eat constantly.  Luckily that stops once we go to bed.  She has started sleeping in the bassinet with no issues now- she goes right in once she's asleep or half-asleep.  She usually wakes up once in the middle of the night 1-3am depending on when we've gone to bed and then again in the early morning.  She does't like to sleep in the bassinet much during the day, but she will usually sleep there from her morning feeding til 8:30-9ish.  That gives me time to get Ryder up, changed and fed before I bring her down.

She has longer periods of wakefulness now, I think around 2 hours is her record.  When she's awake, she's looking around a lot more.  Her eyes are drawn to any light source in the room.  She has started smiling a lot, it starts in her eyes and then ends up with a big toothless grin.  She can't quite hold her head steady, but she does a good job for a few seconds and she lifts it up a lot.  When she's on our chests, she pushes back and lifts her head to get a good look at us.  She is also very good with Ryder- she tolerates his hardcore kisses pretty well.  I never leave them alone together, even her swing is in a gated part of the house, but if I did, he would be on top of her with a full body hug in a heartbeat.

She is growing out of her newborn clothes, she really only has a couple of newborn items left that fit.  So sad!  She is now able to wear the froggy pajamas (seen below) which were my absolute favorite outfit when Ryder was a newborn. I'm so glad to see them again!

Those eyes are still blue.

So serious!

It was only a matter of time til she fell over.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

22 months!

This was Ryder's first full month as a big brother.  After Vivien had been around for a week or so, Ryder decided her face was a drum set and would hit it any chance he could.  He was still giving her kisses, but hitting was more frequent.  Luckily he stopped, cold turkey, one Wednesday and it's been only kisses, hugs and fist bumps since then.

His speaking skills are really taking off at this point.  He probably knows twice as many words as he did two months ago and he is starting to repeat words after us much more easily.  The word of the month for this month is "fire truck," followed closely by "choo choo."  I'm pretty sure I've heard him say "up" this month and after meals he says "sleeves" so that someone will pull his sleeves back down.  He has also mastered the word "other" and will ask us where the other ball is, for example.  He has also learned a bunch of animal sounds, probably since he has so many books about animals.  He also hums along with songs now and sings a couple of words too.

He got a lot of fun new toys and books for Christmas and now he can really entertain himself with them for quite some time, so that I can do things in the kitchen while he plays.  He builds all kinds of big trucks with his Legos and shoots hoops with his new basketball hoop.  He even sits and reads/looks at books by himself.

He is definitely getting to the terrible two age and has been having lots of temper tantrums and cries at the slightest provocation.  It must be hard to not understand why things happen- why he can't have or do certain things and why he has to do other certain things.  That doesn't make it any easier to deal with though!

We got a new fireplace this past month and Ryder is obsessed with the fire and the candles.   He likes to stand by the fire and warm his hands, which is too cute.  He also loves to help start the fire and to help move the logs around the living room and he tries to put them in the fireplace.  He makes us very nervous!  So far he has a healthy respect for the fire; we are trying to keep it that way.

I told him that I wanted him to sit down for a picture- I was thinking the living room, but he jumped right on his table, sat down and looked at me!

Getting his music going, he loves to dance and sing.

Eating some delicious kale soup.

Pondering something.

I told him I wanted him to jump, so he went and stood up on the couch.

Just chillin'

Thursday, January 22, 2015

1 Month!

Hard to believe but Vivien is already 1 month old!  The days and weeks have been flying now that we have two little people running around.

Vivien started out as a puffy, squished up newborn, as all newborns do.  Over the course of the month, we have watched her lose that puffiness, especially around the eyes.  She has gotten much bigger- she is now 21 inches and 8lbs 5 oz, a very healthy gain over her 7 lb birth weight. She seems extra hungry sometimes, so I was worried that she wasn't getting enough milk, but I guess I didn't need to worry.  Her jaundice is almost, if not fully, gone now.  No more yellow eyes and tongue, thankfully!

In the past week or so, she has started staying awake for longer and keeping her eyes wide open and looking around.  She still sleeps a ton though, almost all day and all night.  She just wakes up to eat and then goes back to sleep.  Either she is a sleep-a-holic, or it is because she was four weeks early.  She wakes up every 2-3 hours, occasionally she will go for 4.  She really prefers to be held, but she will sleep laying down or in a swing for an hour, or 2 at most.

Tried to get a picture upright, not very easy.

Those hands are always near her face.

Laying down, she is always moving her legs if she's awake or half-awake.

Those Anne Geddes poses that are so popular aren't as easy as they seem!  

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

21 Months!

Despite my desire for him to remain my little baby, Ryder continues to grow and grow.  In fact, now that we have Vivien, he seems like a giant!  He is clearly a kid now and not a baby.

Ryder is talking more and more, with new words appearing in his vocabulary every day or two.  My personal favorite new word is Mommy, especially since he has been saying Daddy for months! When we got our Christmas tree, he learned that word on the first introduction.  That was probably the first time that we said a word to him and he said it back and remembered it.  The cutest new word of the month has to be Owly, for one of his stuffed animals.  In addition to his plush friend, there seem to be owls everywhere, so he has many occasions to say Owly and it is just so darn cute.  He continues to be able to understand more and more directions and to recognize more words, now he can point to almost everything in all of his books.

He is still eating up a storm.  He eats good meals still and now so many snacks!  His new favorite this month has to be clementines- he has eaten three in one sitting!  That's a lot of vitamin C, no scurvy around here!  We continue to be amazed by the range of foods that he'll eat.  He has been chowing down kale soup with potatoes, carrots, lentils and sausage all month.

He can now play with his toys by himself for a few minutes, which is helpful when chores need to get done around  the house.  He loves to build trucks with his Legos and play with his other trucks.  He likes coloring, in fact one day we found him with one of my colored pencils writing all over th e wall and fireplace!  Luckily it was a watercolor colored pencil and it wiped right off!

Then of course, there were two big events this month- getting ready for Christmas and having a new baby.  Ryder loved the Christmas tree and Christmas lights.  First thing every morning or whenever we got back home, he would walk around the living and dining rooms and point to all of the lights that needed to be turned on.  He even pointed out the light bulbs that were out.  He was all about getting into the tree- we have no ornaments below the three foot mark basically.   I'm sure that his new sister came as a complete surprise to him, but he has been very interested in her.  He likes to kiss  her and is always trying to hold her.

The only picture I got of him really smiling!

He always has his hands behind his back.

A little unsure why I'm bothering him with this camera.

Such a cute pose, but wouldn't give me a smile.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Another Star Is Born

Much to nobody's surprise, baby Vivien arrived a month early, a couple of weeks shy of Christmas.  Starting at about 32 weeks, I was very nervous, but Ryder's birth day of 34 weeks 5 days came and went without incident.  After that, I just kept hoping to make it to the next Friday. Two more Fridays and we would just about make it to vacation.  The next week I oriented my long-term sub and made it to Friday!  Another small victory!

I was, however, super huge by then, which everyone noticed!  Yet again we were saying, "How can that belly get another month bigger?!"  I wanted to take a photo, but since with Ryder's birth we took a picture of that big belly and he was born that night, I was a little superstitious and refrained.  That Friday night I made chocolate covered Christmas Oreos and got some small coworker gifts together and then stayed up late to do the dishes- nothing worse than a sink full of dishes on Saturday morning.

At 3am I got up to go to the bathroom and it was total deja vu.  Just like with Ryder, my water broke out of the blue, but at least this time I knew what it was.  My mom came over to watch Ryder and Janda and I headed to the hospital.  Since we were at 35 weeks 6 days, we were nervous, but we figured since Ryder was OK, this little girl would be too.  Babies who are born before 36 weeks have to go to the Special Care Nursery for 48 hours, so we were trying to avoid that since we wouldn't be able to stay with her if she went there.  We talked to the midwife and doctor and we all agreed that we would try to make it to the next day- so if I needed another C-section we would do it after midnight.  At 8am that almost seemed like an impossible dream.  Little did we know...

Not only did we make it until midnight, we made it past noon the next day.  At 1:36pm, baby Vivien was born at 36 weeks exactly- no Special Care Nursery for her!  She was 19 inches long and 7lbs.  It would seem that Janda and I are two for two with producing early yet huge babies!  Because it was officially 36 weeks, she got to stay in my hospital room the entire time I was there, which was a dream come true after Ryder being whisked away to the Special Care Nursery and then Children's.

All wrapped up at the hospital

Ryder was fascinated when he came to visit

On Tuesday we came home while our new wood-burning fireplace was being installed.  Not ideal!  But, a few hours later all four of us were enjoying a nice fire.

Home at last

Still puffy!

Admiring the new addition

The fireplace has made it so warm and cozy

The next day Vivien had her first doctor's appointment, as a check on her jaundice.  Just like me and Ryder, Vivien was a bit yellow. The doctor had her go for a blood test the next day.  At 4 o'clock on Thursday we go the results of the test... and had to rush her back to the hospital.  She went under the lights immediately and was admitted into a pediatric room that evening.

She and I stayed there for 2 days.  Luckily we had a double room to ourselves, so she had her incubator and I had the bed to sleep in right next to her.  It was terrible to be away from Ryder and Janda again, but being in that bed forced me to keep my feet up a lot, so it actually helped with my swelling and recovery.  When we left on Saturday, her jaundice was down to a reasonable level and my legs were back to their normal size.

Under the lights 

Chilling in the hospital room

Home for good!

We got home a few days before Christmas, so there was plenty of time to settle in before our first Christmas as a family of 4!

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

20 months!

This month Ryder has been talking a lot more.  In addition to learning new words, he is also making nonsense words and sentences, so he is trying to say a lot more.  The funniest new phrase from this month is "Odd Squad."  PBS has been previewing their new show "The Odd Squad" for months.  Ryder has always liked the ads, but he has been getting more into them lately.  A few weeks ago when the ad came on, he yelled out "Odd Squad" out of the blue and then said it non-stop for days.  He requests "Odd Squad" videos by name when he wants to watch something.  He is back to saying Yeah constantly when we ask him questions.  That helps to narrow it down when he is pointing at something and crying and we can't figure out what it is.  When we read books, he continues to be able to point out more and more objects.

We have a couple of fun new games this month also.  He has been playing a silent Simon Says game with us, where he or we do something and the other copies.  A lot of it is touching/covering body parts is included, occasionally there is some weird walking and hopping.  He also can touch about a dozen different body parts when you ask him too.  He will also touch our body parts if we ask him.  The cutest one is definitely belly, since he'll lift up his shirt or mine to show it off.

His fine motor skills continue to improve too.  He is getting good at putting Legos together and doesn't need that much help to build his big trucks.  He can hold a pencil/pen/crayon very well now and wants to write whenever I am writing.  He is quite good at making marks but not very good at knowing where the marks belong.  He was coloring one day and he got tired of the paper and tried to draw on the floor and then over a scuff mark on the wall.  Luckily I was right there and nothing got ruined!

This month we worked out some residual complications from his Hirschsprung's Disease and he has been eating more than ever.  He has gotten really good with the spoon and can eat a bowl of cereal basically all on his own.  He gets all annoyed when something gets on his hands, so I have to wipe his hands a few times while he's eating something messy.  Two molars have broken through and some more are coming I'm sure, so he can eat more foods now.  He likes to eat dry cereal, Goldfish, etc, but unfortunately he also likes to dump them out and/or throw them.  He dumped out a whole box of graham crackers one day, which was fun to clean up.

Can't take his eyes off the banana
 He loves those bananas

Never stops running around

Never stops smiling either

He loves to run full speed at us and jump up into our arms

The seated portion of the photo shoot didn't go too smoothly- he wouldn't sit up and smile