Today is a good place to be.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Feeding Babies

I love feeding babies. It has to be one of my favorite jobs as a mother. My other favorite job is bathing babies. And another favorite is kissing boo-boos. I rarely share these jobs with others- I keep them for myself much to my mothers/husbands/friends/childrens/sisters dismay. I am the mom. I get to pick what I am selfish about. I let you hold my babies when they sleep, so I save a few jobs for myself. Kathryn has been enjoying the bounty of the earth thanks to Gerber. I still have grand intentions of making her food- but so far its been easy enough to go down the baby food isle and just grab a few flavors. And she loves every flavor so far. Not as excited about prunes as she is about green beans. With the addition of two bottom teeth last week she has been enjoying biter biscuits(Its soooo cute to see her teeth marks in the bottom of the cracker!). She has fun sitting with us at the table and shooting the breeze with the rest of us. We all crack up at her faces and mannerisms. We love to see her lick her chops and ask for more.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Two Weeks of Swim Lessons

I thought two weeks of swim lessons would be great for my kids- they would be able to advance and we would have stuff to do to keep us occupied the last few weeks of summer. I didn't think about ME having to get up EVERY SINGLE DAY to take them! I guess this is training for next week when school starts up.

We went to the Conestoga Swim Center vs. the Aloha Swim Center that is just a few blocks away. Conestoga has a kiddie pool and with my sons resistance to water I thought that big pool would be just too overwhelming for him. And I am glad I did that- the kids did good. Nathan advanced. Leila did not. But not by her own fault- she was too tall in the kiddie pool to work on everything, and kinda cheated by putting her feet down. Next time she needs to be in a school age class and in the big pool. Go figure.

By the way, both of my kids are very talented kickers. I think amazing was the word.

Oh- we ran into a life-guard Nazi- I disliked her for many reasons. I would be happy to tell you all about it.

My kids had great teachers- both very young. Nathan ran into a bit of trouble on one day when his beloved BOY teacher had a sub who was a GIRL. He screamed the entire time-- I was quite embarrassed. Luckily my friend Alesha was there with her kids and held Kathryn while I tried to deal with Nathan(At first he didn't want to swim. Then he did. The girl teacher after all owned a red "Herbie". Then the lifeguard Nazi came over to kick me out, then he got scared and didn't want to swim. But he really kind of did. Then he was just so conflicted the rest of the half hour that he screamed and cried and didn't know what to do with himself- Just one of the reasons that lifeguard has her nick-name).

Fun times....

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Summer Swinging

Finally! Baby gets to play WITH brother and sister!

Monday, August 17, 2009

We Love you Baby K!

Six months Little Miss Kathryn has been in our home- but we've loved her for well over a year now- I loved the idea of her for many years before that.

Kathryn has almost doubled her birth weight, being 18 lbs, 9 oz. She is 28 inches tall/long. She is doing all the appropriate baby things for her age.

I love doctors appointments for baby/kid well-checks. Time to just talk and discuss my beautiful child(take your pick of which one) with my doctor and reflect on how amazing they are. Kathryn has been in to see the doctor so often lately I feel like setting up a standing appointment every two weeks. After her last appointment I set up an appointment with the urologist in Sept. In talking to my doctor I asked her if she wanted me to move the standard 6 month check up until after that so we could discuss. She said no. "Your child is more than the problem at hand." I like that. Kathryn loves her Mommy. She is very mommy-dependant. Not even Grandma or Aunties can seem to hold her for very long before she demands me. Leila and Nathan loved being held by others. They were very social and there were days I felt they would rather have someone else instead of me. I wondered what it would be like to have a more shy, more dependant child, maybe I even wanted my children to have those traits. Now I know. I am very thankful Daddy is a close second to Mommy. He is able to hold her more than anyone else can. I think its thanks to my asking him to change her diaper first thing in the morning before he goes off to work. Even though she wakes up to my face, its usually Daddy's smile and kisses that start her off while he cleaning her up. Soon, it will be Daddy tending her at night to get her off the midnight buffet.
Leila and Nathan amuse her to no end. Nathan walks into the room and Kathryn starts to giggle and her limbs start going crazy. Leila will sing and use her most entertaining voice with the baby(which I do not appreciate so much) and that completely cracks her up. I can tell she is excited because her entire body responds to the people in her close family. Voices excite her, faces impress her, songs and jokes completely amuse her. She is a happy baby, even though you might not be able to tell if her mom isn't holding her.
She is eating cereal and various fruits and veggies. Daddy is dieing to give her some chocolate, but I say no. She does not like a pacifier, even though I am STILL trying to force it on her. She will play with it, but it doesn't sooth her. She usually has a finger, two or three or five in her mouth. She likes to suck on my hair when I hold up on my shoulder. She LOVES drinking out of my glass, and does pretty good with it too. Many times I have seen in her eyes that she wishes she could get around to play with her brother and sister. I am sure she will be more motivated to catch up and play with them.
It won't be long little one... in fact, it will be all too soon. We love you Baby Kathryn with every heart we have.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Keeping Busy - Life with 2 Leila's!

With our out of country visitor we have been seeing the sights and having some fun! With a little baby who has had been sick most of the time, I am personally impressed by the amount of things we have been doing. I am mostly impressed because there were many days I wanted to just stay in my jammies, put on a "fast play" DVD downstairs while I cocooned myself in my own bed upstairs with the baby. For some reason I don't feel comfortable being my true lazy self when someone else is in my home. I have no trouble blogging it about, but someone actually seeing me like this...

We went to the zoo, celebrated the 4th of July, and headed down to Jeremy's parents home where Leila went fishing for the first time, and caught several Rainbow Trout.

We made use of the Cultural Passes at the library and went to most of the places they offer. The Japanese Gardens, Rose Gardens, and Washington Park was a lot of fun. We even went up to Council Crest and saw that the mountains were "out".

We(well, I stayed home with a sick baby) went to see the Gilbert House and Silver Falls. Leila loves children, and loves to play with children, so she had a blast at this Childrens Museum in Salem.

Our weekends were full of fun day trips. We spent one day at Tillamook, Pacific City, Oceanside. We were excited that we were there for the 100th Anniversary of the Tillamook cheese factory and were able to take a shuttle from the Blue Heron Cheese factory down to the TCF. We had lunch and ice cream of course. Yum.

Back in Portland we went to the Chinese Gardens with my Dad, using yet again a pass from the library.

We spent a day bowling and hitting baseballs with Sister Martin and Sister Bennett- who are close to Leila's age and enjoyed visiting with her. Then that weekend we headed back out west up to Astoria, Ft. Stevens, Peter Iredale shipwreck.

They had temple ground tours, so we took Leila there one Sunday evening and enjoyed our time together. Leila and I made it to the Portland Art Museum without the big kids(super fun in my opinion- thank you Christy). We spent a few afternoons at Grandma's swimming. We went up to Timberline Lodge on Mt. Hood, and enjoyed a non-view.

We also saw some movies, ate out several times, went to many area parks for fun and picnics. We hiked up the Columbia River Gorge, went to the Pittock Mansion with Amy and her kids. We kept ourselves so busy. Leila was very easy going and seemed to enjoy her time with us, and we really appreciated having her in our home.

We LOVE YOU Leila! And we miss you too!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

It shouldn't surprise me....

I have had the hardest time lately trying to get Kathryn to take her medicine for these darn UTI's. And I am not looking forward to doing so for the next two years- YIKES! She is so little, but she can clamp that mouth down so hard I have to pry her jaws open with my pinky finger, put the dropper in, and squeeze, but not too much at a time. Even then she spits most of it out.
Well, yesterday we had a break thru. Leila-Girl. Leila can make her sister smile and be happy during the entire process. And it shouldn't surprise me as I think back on it. When Nathan was a wee little one he had some problems with bronchitis and asthma and allergies made it pretty scary for us. After having spent a day in the ER as his blood oxygen was too low, we had him home and we had to give him his first breathing treatment. He howled. Jeremy and I and hated doing this to him. Our little Leila was just about 18 months- she didn't know what to do. She was so distressed for her brother. She was howling a bit too, running around not knowing what to do. After about 5 minutes of us confining Nathan and both Jeremy and I being quite stressed out, Leila simply come over and grabbed Nathan's hand. He calmed a little bit. But life was better for everyone. I remember tearing up as I saw the love she had and her natural ability for compassion and ability to nurture. I know I will see her personality continue to grow in this capacity. It is truly a blessing to watch this sweet little girl.

The conflict of Changs and the Weight Watcher

Back in my good old days of eating whatever a chose, and ending up 50 lbs overweight, I LOVED the comfort of that really full feeling. I still do. There is something about feeling so full that helps sleep, helps comfort, helps numb pain/boredom/etc. Eating and food has been a reward, a celebration, a comfort, and often a welcome break to a monotonous life. I always feel pretty good when I eat, so eating to the point of not being able to eat anymore was usually a welcome feeling.

Mind you, I did NOT eat like this every day. I became overweight going to buffets once in a while, eating out at restaurants(and finishing my plate which was something I was NOT taught to do) at least weekly, working a sit-down-job, not moving very much, taking medication that slowed my heart rate making me tired as heck that motivated me even less for exercise, the simple change in metabolism as I grew, sigh, older. Oh yea, add a few babies into the mix and I was simply doomed.

Before Kathryn was conceived, I lost my excess weight thanks to Weight Watchers, and the support of many of my friends. I really didn't think putting it back for the baby would be a big deal- I have always said a baby is worth any amount of weight- so long as he or she is healthy. Of course, I only gained 15-20 pounds with Leila and Nate. Kathryn's pregnancy gave me several health issues I hadn't had to deal with, including a quick week of bedrest. I gained almost all of the weight I just lost the previous year and half back. It was very uncomfortable for me to see these "numbers" going back up. I watched them all as they went down thinking I would never see them again. But baby making and weight loss is a big no-no, so I dealt with it. Now, I have about 30 pounds to get back to where I was before blessing #3 came into my life. I lost more than that- I can do that again- right? Yes- I CAN! And I have started on that journey, trying to do it on my own before I start shelling out $ to WW again. Thanks to my sweet friend Mandy who is on this journey with me, we are doing it together.

So, back to the *subject* of my post: Changs Mongolian Grill. Jeremy *LOVES* changs. If I want to go out to eat and we have numerous reasons not to, I can suggest there and he has no will-power to say no. With kids now, we don't go there much. Leila loves shrimp without breading, so we make her up a bowl of shrimp and noodles. She loves it. Nathan won't touch anything, so we pay for him to have a soda for dinner and little bowl of ice-cream for dessert.

We took Leila (from Belgium) there last night. Now.... being a weight watcher I have decided its totally worth any points. BUT- I am smart about it. I do one bowl full of veggies, and another bowl with lean meat a few noodles. I don't skimp on the sauce because its just too yummy. Weight Watchers is a trade off-- there is nothing I can not eat, I just need to make sure my points are worth it.

There is a conflict though. You stand in line with heaping bowls full of yummy, raw goodness. You watch as they take your yumminess and cook it on the big BBQ. You wait patiently as they cook it thoroughly anticipating the moment they scoop it onto a huge plate for you to sprinkle with sesame seeds. You then parade your plate back to your table and enjoy thoroughly.

Herein lies the conflict. Rather, herein lies MY CONFLICT: That is a lot of food. I get incredibly self-conscious standing in these little lines. What do these men cooking my food think of me? Am I eating more than the average person? Do they think I deserve to be 30 pounds overweight because of the way I am eating? What do the people in line think of me, or are they so focused on their own plates that they could care less? Why do I care what any one else thinks? Am I feeling guilty because I am indulging, even if this is perhaps the first time in days that I have indulged? All this conflict from the moment I put down my heaping bowls of raw food, to putting down a hot steaming plate of food on my table.

I get over it and eat it. Eat it all. Since my WW journey, I never go back for seconds, and I rarely have that completely over the top full feeling(just a good full feeling). I do enjoy my fortune cookie. Sometime I splurge with the ice-cream. On my way home I always examine my conflict and wonder what the heck is wrong with me? Who cares? Enjoy one night out! But its thoughts I have almost every time I go there.

I wonder if anyone else thinks that way, or if its simply my awareness my food issues. I am actually amused at the psychology of the whole eating process and laugh at myself. For if I can't laugh life is just too serious. And if I laugh, why shouldn't you?

Oh and wish me luck on my 30 pound weight loss.... I will let you know how it is going.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Quick Update

So, Little Miss Kathryn came down with *ANOTHER* UTI this past weekend. I was able to take her in on Monday to get that checked out and talk to the doctor about her results from her VCUG and Ultrasound.

She has kidney reflux on both sides- the left is a level 4 out of 4. The right is a level 2. I set up an appointment for a urologists on Sept. 10th to have him take a looksee at her test results so we can make an action plan. We started her on antibiotics to clear up the current infection. Likely she will have to be on a low dose of antibiotics for a year or two and then they will reassess the issue and discuss any surgical needs. The dr. said she is likely to grow out of a 2, but probably not a 4. Poor baby. Its just not right.

She is in good spirits though, just only wanting to be with Momma. I appreciate all of my friends concern and prayers.