Saturday, March 29, 2008

So Tired and Not Ready to Go Home!!

Easter Pictures with Momma and Daddy

Me Being Cute on My Four Month Birthday!

My Favorite Uncle!!!

Meeting Daddy's Grandparents

Four Month Check-Up

Katie and I took Steven to the doctor's today for his four month check-up. He did great, as always, and the doctor was again impressed by how strong he is. (Oh, just imagine how it will be when he is two and that strong!)

He checked in at 14 lbs, 6 oz, which puts him just a tad over the 50th percentile. He is in the same percentile for his height--25 inches. He's grown 4-5 inches since our last check-up!! No wonder his sleepers are too small! He can still wear them as long as he doesn't want to straighten out, but that's not really going to happen :)

He also got four more shots and an oral vaccine. He had a bit harder time with the shots this evening than he did before. Tonight he was fussy and feverish, but after he took some tylenol, he did better. It didn't help that Mark accidentally ripped off one of the band aids when he was changing Steven's diaper.

The doctor also said that he is ready for rice cereal, and he proved her right tonight. If he hadn't been so sleepy and sore, he would have gobbled it all up. As it was, he ate a pretty good amount and still took a bottle after/with it even though he had had a bottle only an hour or so before. My little man definitely likes to eat!

We're hoping that by increasing his feedings before bed (2-3 bottles in the last few hours before bedtime) he'll start sleeping through the night. Now, we don't count it as sleeping through the night if he gets up before our alarm clock, but that's not how it is typically defined. He has slept for 7+ hour stretches before (midnight to 7:00 a.m. at least once), but he usually wakes up to eat between one and three. He takes a full bottle at that feeding and goes right back to sleep; he's not just playing or anything like that.

The doctor said to gradually decrease the amount in his bottle in the middle of the night as we increase what he eats before going to bed. When he's down to just an ounce or so, she said to let him cry longer to see if he'll go back to sleep on his own. It will be nice when he sleeps through the night, every night!

Now to be fair, I must tell you that Mark does the first night feeding, and since Steven is pretty much down to one, that means that he is the only one getting up in the night. What a guy!!!

I have pictures from today as well as from our trip to Iowa, but it's getting late, and I need to get to bed. I'll try to post them tomorrow!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

We Have a Cat!

Steven just discovered that a few minutes ago. He's seen Jo, obviously, and he has even grabbed at her fur, but I don't think he really "saw" her until just now. I was dressing him on the couch, and he likes to stand so once we got partially dressed I stood him up. The cat was on the back of the couch, and that was the direction Steven was facing (I was going to let him look out the window.).

He looked at her and seemed surprised to see her. He reached out to touch her, and he got her paw, her face, her neck, etc. Fortunately Josie tolerated it even though you could tell she was cringing and looking at me like "I can't believe you're letting him do that!" After her behavior and destructive ways this week, he should be allowed to do anything he wants with her. (Yesterday Mark came in the bedroom after letting the dog out and told me that it might be time to put the cat down. Don't worry, he was joking, kind-of. She just was not a good cat that night!)

I wish I could have taken a picture of Steven's face when he was touching Josie. It was like he had an epiphany or something :) Unfortunately, I couldn't because I was holding him steady, and if I let go, he would have fallen down. Maybe when Mark gets home I can get a picture of him.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Fun With Daddy

MM Update

Yesterday Steven and I met up with several mocha moms at Jungle Java, and we had a really good time. There were about six moms plus quite a few kids. I enjoyed talking with the other moms with babies and getting to know them a bit.

No one acted surprised that I was white, although it did take a minute to get someone's attention at the beginning to find out if they were the mocha mom's group :) Towards the end, one mom (who seemed like the leader) told me that when I came in she thought that I was Melissa Joan Hart. Another one piped up to say the same thing. She said she wondered if it were a joke or something. That was weird, but then I remembered a long time ago someone else saying that I looked like her. Definitely don't see it!!

I'd definitely like to join the group so I can do all the members only events, but we just don't have the money for the dues right now. If I get some Writing Center hours, then maybe I'll be able to. They seem like a fun group!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Mocha Moms

I've kind of joined a group called Mocha Moms. I say kind of because I haven't paid any membership fees yet, but I get to go to two events before deciding if I want to join or not. I haven't been able to do any of the events before now because they were on the days I worked, but tomorrow I am meeting up with other moms at a local Jungle Java.

Mocha Moms is a group of African-American moms who meet a couple times a month at different places. Usually it is just moms (and little babies I would think), and they are currently doing a series on strengthening your marriage. I'm really interested in seeing how the group works, and I was impressed with what I've read on their site so far.

I've also joined an on-line network for African-American moms, and that group has been really supportive of me and my story, but it's not the same as getting together in person. One of the women in that group told me about the Mocha Moms network.

Tomorrow will definitely be interesting because I will experience what it is like to be the minority in a group. The catch is that they don't know yet that I'm white. There isn't much online communication, so I haven't talked to anyone except one of the directors/facilitators. Their site says they don't discriminate on basis of race (or anything else), so I'm not worried about getting kicked out or anything, but it will definitely be interesting. I'll be sure to let you all know how it goes!!

(I'll also be posting pictures sometime soon. The camera's in the car, and it is in the middle of the night so I'm not going out to get it!)

Waiting Families Meeting

Tonight Steven and I went to Bethany (our adoption agency) to be part of a panel discussion for the waiting families meeting. (Mark stayed home since he had to get up so early today after getting home so late last night.) We talked about our hospital/legal risk/legal placement experiences. Out of the four couples presenting, two of us got our babies from interim care, one was chosen by a birthmother in her second trimester and were able to be at the birth, and the last ones were matched with a preemie who was three months early.

It was fun to share our information, and I was able to give a little promo for transracial adoption. One of the other couples adopted a biracial baby, but I didn't know he was biracial until they said it. The couple with the preemie was African American, as was their baby. That mom and I exchanged information, and she's going to help me with any questions I have about black babies.

Several couples stayed after to talk to me about transracial adoption, and that was really neat. I exchanged information with several other couples, and I am excited about making new friends!

Back from Iowa

This weekend Mark, Steven, and I went to Iowa to visit Mark's grandparents. We also picked up Mark's brother in Indiana on the way. It was a long drive, but it definitely helped to have Andy in the backseat to keep Steven entertained! It was nice to spend the time with Mark's grandparents. We hadn't been out there in over a year, and they aren't able to travel anymore. They loved Steven (of course!) and were able to spend a lot of time with him.

The one thing we didn't really think about ahead of time was how much longer the trip would take with Steven. It wasn't horrible on the way out, although when we picked up Andy, Steven needed to be fed and changed. The way home was a bit different.

After church, we all went to Perkins for lunch. We planned on leaving straight from there, so we drove separately from Mark's grandparents. As we were getting ready to leave, I did a quick smell check of Steven, and asked Mark to change him before we left. (I had changed all the dirty diapers that weekend and wanted a break!) He didn't want to, so I just did it. I woke Steven up, grabbed a diaper and the wipes container, and headed into the bathroom to change him.

When I pulled down his pants, I realized that it would take a long time to get him cleaned up. To make a long story short, I had to get the diaper bag from Mark, put Steven in the sink (with his shirt, onsie, and diaper on), wash him layer by layer until he was sitting in the sink naked. I wasn't thrilled about that but didn't have any real alternatives. I gave him a quick bath, put on his onsie and socks and then sent him out to Mark for him to finish dressing him because I still had a lot of clean up to do. After getting the changing table taken care of, I scrubbed him clothes in the sink since it would be quite a while before I could wash them.

It ended up taking over half an hour, so we were behind before we had even made it out of town. We didn't make it home until almost 2:00 a.m.! Poor Mark had to go to work this morning, but I lucked out since my parents offered to take Steven for the afternoon so I could get things done. I think it's going to take us a few days to recover from the trip!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

One Cool Dude

Lovin' My Jump Jump Jumparoo!

Steven's definitely gotten the hang of his jumparoo. He knows how to work it, but he also likes just relaxing in it, sucking on his link-a-doos that I attached to it for him. His favorite thing which makes him laugh really hard is when Mark or I bounce him in it. It just cracks him up!

He doesn't necessarily spend a lot of time in it, but he does enjoy his time in it. I think that we just tend to put him in there after we've played with him, and he isn't always ready to entertain himself for very long.

Sadie was lying on the floor the other day, and Mark went to prop Steven up against her to take their picture together. It didn't work at all. Sadie popped up as soon as Mark tried to set Steven down. He ended up putting Steven in his jumparoo, and this was as close as Sadie was willing to go. Maybe someday we'll get a good picture of them together!!

I'm not sure what Sadie's problem is. She does like him even though she does get a bit jealous. I think that she's just not ready to have him sitting by her, especially since that means that she can't try to lick him when I'm not looking. Whenever I put Steven's cream on him, she really wants to lick it off--esp. his hands and his hair. I wish she'd give that up!

Reading the Comics

"This one, Daddy. Read this one!"

Me and My Aunt Rachel

Steven got his first cammo outfit in honor of his Aunt Rachel, so of course they needed a picture together!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Bath Time!

On Saturday night, Steven got a much needed bath. He wasn't too happy since I had carelessly dumped water on his head at the beginning, so we don't have any happy baby pictures. We just can't believe how big he's getting! I just had to pack up all his 0-3 month clothes this morning :(

Getting Wet
Now it's time to clean my back!

I just want to be dressed and left alone!

Daddy and Little Buddy Time

Just to show you how much he's grown, here are some pictures of his first bath at our house. This was the week of December 17th.

A very little Little Buddy!

Momma and Steven

We don't do daily baths in our house--partly because it isn't good for his skin, and partly because we just don't have the time or energy! But on Sunday, he got a good rinsing in my parents' kitchen sink after his first real diaper blow out. Then today (Monday), he had a spray down in the shower with his clothes on because of a very nasty blowout! I rinsed off each layer of clothing before I took it off until I finally got rid of everything, and then I gave him a quick washing before getting him dressed in his FOURTH outfit for the day!!

Friday's Adventure

Last Friday my parents asked me if I would pick up my sister from work so they could go out for lunch to celebrate my mom's birthday. Of course, I agreed to. So when my sister called, I bundled up the baby, critter proofed the house (shut ALL doors and covered up anything that they might possibly get into), and then ended up taking the dog with me.

When we got home, Katie went to wash her hands in the bathroom, and she couldn't get the door to open. I went to investigate, and sure enough, the door wouldn't open. I still don't know how, but the cabinet drawer had come open AFTER I had shut the door. I didn't know what to do, so I just left it for the time being.

When my parents came to pick up Katie and Steven, I showed the door to my dad. He went to work on it. He unbent and rebent a wire hanger, unscrewed the door plate, tried to use a flashlight to see what the problem was, but nothing worked. (Of course, the door hinges were on the inside and the window was shut.)

We finally decided to drill a hole in the door to try to get the drawer to shut. (I had been able to see just enough with the flashlight to verify that the drawer was the problem.) We then stuck different things through the hole to try to shut the drawer. We kept making the hole bigger and bigger and were on the verge of making it big enough for me to stick my hand through when I grabbed the overhead bar on Steven's playmat. We stuck it through and shut the door. Yay!!

My dad felt horrible about the hole, but I was thrilled. Did I mention that I work on Friday night and that this is our only bathroom?? I figured we could just switch out the bathroom door for the basement one.

Oh, and did I mention that Mark knew nothing of this the whole time we were working on it?? I figured there was no reason to call him until we had good news, and even though a hole in the door isn't great, it's better than trying to break in through the window!

So if you come over and have to use the bathroom, this is what you will see.

An up close shot. The floral pattern is my bathrobe that always hangs on the back of the door. At least it gives some privacy!

On Saturday, Mark dragged the basement door up only to discover that it goes the opposite way. We debated whether or not to use it even though the handle would be chest high, but then we realized that we'd have to drill a new latch hole. That sealed it. We are just living with a hole in our bathroom door. At least for now. We really want to replace all the doors, but that isn't in our budget anytime soon.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Hanging Out in My Jumparoo

After his bath this afternoon, Steven tried out his new jumparoo. He wasn't sure what to think, but he quickly caught on that if he stood up the music and lights would come on. I was surprised that he picked up on that, esp. after only having it go on once or twice.

As you can see from the pictures, the most important thing to him was chewing on either his hands or the dragonfly. I don't know that his hands would have tasted that great since I had just put his cream on them, but he didn't seem to care too much.

Notice the blanket under his feet--he's way to short for it right now, but that seems to work.

I almost have it!

Yay!! I got it!
(but momma did help me a little bit)

Seriously People!!

When I am taking lia sophia orders, a lot of people like to put it on their credit card. This is perfect for me because I don't have to worry about cashing checks or keeping track of money. However, some people are incredibly careless (and that's being really nice) when it comes to their credit card information.

One person sent me her card number/date through IM. (Yeah, you know who you are--I couldn't believe it!!) And then today, someone sent their card info. by e-mail to the hostess who then forwarded it on to me! I would have never even thought about sending that kind of information over the internet, but I guess that not everyone thinks that way.

I just don't get it.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Aunt Rachel and a Jumperoo!

Today I went up to school to help my students with their research papers. Mark wasn't home yet, my mom was at the doctor's, and my dad was working. So for the first time ever, Steven stayed with someone else. Aunt Rachel kindly agreed to watch him, and they spent a good bit of time dancing to the Hairspray soundtrack. I think he likes his Aunt Rachel :)

The little buddy relaxing in his swing.

After Mark picked Steven up, they went to Target to get a jumperoo for Steven. Today was the last day that our Target registry coupon was good, and I had saved up $40 in gift cards to put towards it. We also needed formula (as always!), so Mark got that too. When he went to pay, the total was a lot higher than he expected, and it was then that he realized that I had the gift cards with me at work, almost an hour away. So much for my great plan! We just have the next few cans of formula covered :)

When I got home, I decided to put together the jumperoo. Mark was exhausted from work, so he slept on the couch. I did have to wake him up, though, to find out if we had AA batteries. Fortunately, we do. (We have a ton of this size, but of course, everything else takes a different size.)

It'll be fun to see what Steven thinks of his new jumperoo. I'll definitely have to put something on the floor for his feet to touch, but I think it will work. If he were awake (which I'm glad he's not right now!), I'd put him in it and see what he thinks. We'll have to try it out tomorrow!