Sunday, October 26, 2014

Long time no see.

long time no see.

life has been busy and filled with all sorts of "life" events.

Bennett will be one year old in two weeks (as of yesterday).  Wow.

As he approaches his first birthday, it has really forced me to reflect on the past year.  My first year in motherhood.  It has been nothing like I expected.  I could even go as far as to say it has been the opposite as I expected.

but it has been so beautiful. HARD and beautiful.  kinda like all the good things in life?

I have realized that my "twenties" are just for learning.  making mistakes (sometimes BIG ones) and learning from them.  We are so lucky to have tomorrow, to move forward and to make our next day better.

So, I have a little catching up to do.

I left this lil blog when Bennett was just 6 months old...
What a cutie!  
Actually, in july life was pretty easy.  We had a good grip on his allergies.  I avoided the milk, eggs and peanuts and Benentt was happy as a clam- sleeping through the night!  Two long naps during the day!

Not long after his 6 month birthday we started introducing solid foods... yay!  more foods = less boob time.  I was thrilled.  Bennett's body not so much.  

Our first trial with food was avocado... big fat fail.  he had a FPIEs reaction.  Pretty much his body could not tolerate the protein in avocado and it caused profuse vomiting until his stomach was completely emptied and then lethargy and a long hard 3 hour nap.  actually, we were really lucky.  most FPIE kiddos end up in the hospital.  

A few weeks later we tried a few more foods... fail fail fail.  This time no vomiting but instead he was full of gas, constipated, refusing naps and up all night in pain.  And he had a ton of mucous.  Snot in his nose, in his throat, in his poop... everywhere.  So, we backed off solids for a couple more months. The moment we took the solids out and he was just on breastmilk for a few days he was back to his happy self.  

fast forward to about september (bennett is about 9 months old).  he is finally starting to eat more foods!  for breakfast he would have some cheerios or rice puffs with some fruit.  then i would send some veggies with him to daycare and he would have some veggies at night too.  we noticed he would get reflux-y if he had bananas or carrots so we just avoided those.  And he got hives to cantaloup and garlic mashed potatoes so we avoided those.  and he was getting colds all the time, but hey he's at daycare... what did i expect?    

but we had another problem.  our friend constipation crept back into the picture.  and he came back with a vengeance!!! Our boy would not poop.  like for a week a time!  he would grunt and grunt for days but produce nothing.  We tried prunes and pears with no such luck.  jeret's co worker had a daughter that had to be on mirilax for her first six years of her life.  i said there was no way i was giving my son a laxative.  

well he went from being constipated to full on crying every time he had to go.  it would be so large and dry that it hurt so bad that he would scream (and I think he even held it in because he knew it was going to hurt).

so, jeret took bennett to the pediatrician to see about this mirilax stuff.  she assured him that so many babies need a little extra something.  she said they call it "vitamin m" at the office because so many kids take it.  she said give him a little every day.  no harm done! she says.  she says it goes through the intestine and brings water to the bowels and doesn't get ingested at all by the baby.

so i agreed.  

three days into the mirilax we have A BIG PROBLEM.  my son is acting odd.  he will not sleep at night.  he will not take a nap (he was a really good two-a-day napper up until this point).  in the middle of the night he would bang his head on his crib (not hard but bang none the less).  he had "tasmanian devil" behavior.   something was wrong.  and it was really wrong.  

i say it has to be the mirilax.  we must stop it immediately!  i call the pediatrician and she agrees to stop the treatment.  i take to google searching everything i can find.  apparently some babies DO REACT TO MIRILAX WITH PSYCHOLOGICAL EFFECTS! good lord.  i could have died then and there.  it was like someone stuck a knife in my heart.  what had i done to my son?  Apparently, the drug was absorbed through his intestine, entered his blood stream and was causing psychological symptoms.  i have never felt so petrified and guilty in my life.  

BUT it left me wondering... why did this drug get in my son's blood system when all the other kids on "vitamin m" have no harm?  There was something missing.  i just knew that i was about to get some answers to the questions i have had for a long time: why does my exclusively breastfed son have food allergies?  why so many intolerances/sensitivities to foods?  eczema?  breathing problems?  What does all this mean? BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY HOW DO I FIX IT?  

Us moms.  We'll do just about anything to make sure our babies are healthy and happy.  It is the best job in the world.  

Next post is all about solving those problems.  I'm on it!  And we are already seeing so much healing...

Friday, June 27, 2014


Where have the last 4 months gone?  We have been busy surviving around here.  Parenthood brings days that are full of joy, love but exhausting all at once.  There were so many nights that I went to bed thinking, "What in the world am I doing?"  I would be excited for work the next morning but then miss my boy terribly when I walked through the office door.  Motherhood is full of so many ups and downs.  I have learned to embrace those downs because they make the wonderful moments so so good.

Bennett is the best.  I know all moms think their babies are pretty awesome, but I am just so in love.  He is such a ham lately.  He has two teeth.  They popped through right at 5 months.  And he is so close to getting his top two.  I check every morning to see if they have erupted.  I keep thinking maybe he is teething and that is why he is still not sleeping through the night... wishful thinking!  He wakes up once to eat around midnight or 1pm.  But he goes right back to sleep so its not a big deal.

He has been sitting unsupported since about 5 months as well.  He is getting braver and reaching for toys that are further away so I know crawling is not far off.  He will push himself backwards across the entire room.  My little monkey!  He can roll but chooses not to most of the time.  He is also chatting all day and clapping!

Bennett is finally starting to enjoy solids, or purees I should say.  I think he had so much trouble in the beginning because of all of his allergies and reflux.  He still is sensitive to a lot of foods: avocado, bananas, peaches, coconut and quinoa to name a few.  His allergist confirmed his allergy to milk, eggs and peanuts.  I still eat tree nuts and they seem to not bother him at all.  I am sure about the peaches, coconut and quinoa but the days I ate those he was fussier so I have just avoided them.  I am so that crazy person.  In a few months I'll reintroduce them.  Food allergies are a challenge but when I think of all the other health issues Bennett could have... we are blessed to just have allergies.

I am still able to exclusively breastfeed and that makes me so happy!  Not because I feel breastmilk is best- I think anyway you choose to feed your baby is best- I just love the bonding nursing brings.  It is the time during the day when it is just him and I.  There have been so many hurdles that we have overcome!  First the oversupply, then going back to work, and the food allergies!! But through all of that we are still successfully nursing and I am thankful.  I sometimes curse my pump as I feel like it has to go EVERYWHERE with me and I stress out about getting all my sessions in at work, and then not to mention that I can't have a date night that is longer than three hours because I am engorged.  But in the long scheme of life, this is a very short chapter and I am grateful for it.

Bennett spent the entire week at "Daddy Daycare" this past week.  I try not think about all of the money we are spending for a daycare the he rarely goes to, but this is the best we could do in the situation we were in.  Next year we are going to re evaluate and try to work our schedules so that he only has daycare two days a week instead of four.  Then maybe I wouldn't feel so bad about the 1000+ dollars we spend a month on daycare when he generally only goes 3 - 4 days per month!  Bennett is lucky that he has a dad that is willing to take such good care of him.  And I am lucky to have married a man that is such a good dad and an even better husband.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

4 Months

Bennett is 4 Months Old!

Oh my, I can not believe how fast time is flying.  A lot has happened in the last month.  I went back to work.  That has been quiet a transition.  The actual work part has been a breeze, but the working mom part has not been as easy.  The toughest part has been piecing together child care.  Jeret's unique hours have been a challenge to work with but we are figuring it out.

Okay, on to my sweet sweet baby.

Bennett is changing so fast!  Each month has turned into my favorite.

He is cooing and talking and giggling and making all sorts of fun noises.  He is very ticklish too!  He loves bath time and kicks the water and splashes us the entire time.  We had to purchase a new bathtub this month because he was about to jump out of his old one with all the kicks.

We have a bedtime routine that has been really successful (knock on wood).  We start the bath around 7-7:30 and let him play until the water gets cool.  We then give him a massage with baby lotion and get him dressed in his PJs.  Then we read a book (or more if he isn't too sleepy).  And he nurses until he is drowsy or full, and then he goes in his crib.  Sometimes he falls asleep nursing but most of the time he is awake and he sucks on his hands until he falls asleep.  He's normally out around 8:30 and then wakes up in the middle of the night to eat (anywhere from 2:30 to 4:30) and falls right back asleep until 6:30 or so.  He is a great little sleeper.

Bennett is grabbing at toys, my hair and anything within arms reach.  He loves to put everything in his mouth.  Everything is a new discovery!

He had his 4 month check up a few days ago.  He is 17lbs 3 oz and 27in long!  He is 83% in the weight and 99% in the height.  His head is following trend and is still very large coming in at 45cm.  The average 4 month olds head is about 16 or 17cm.  Bennett's was 37 at birth.  ouch.

He has hit all of his milestones except rolling over.  He is not even close!  The doctor said we need to really step it up at home with tummy time and if there is not any improvement then he will need to see a physical therapist.  I never realized just how much time babies needed to spend on their tummy, especially when they are bigger babies and have much more weight to carry.  I hope we can catch him up quick!

Also, they want us to start solids!! What?  He is waaaaaay to young for baby food!  Oh my goodness. They say anytime between 4 and 6 months to start.  I think we will wait at least a few weeks.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

3 Months in Photos

 3 Months!  
My sweet baby loves to talk and giggle and hug you while you hold him.  He is the sweetest. 
Bennett is swinging and grabbing at his toys in his play gym!  You can barely see, but Milo is laying right next to him.  So sweet.    Below: Bennett and My Valentine on Valentine's day.  We went out to dinner.  It was... errr... interesting.  I amy have been standing up by our table "jiggling" Bennett to sleep while we waited for our food.  It wasn't exactly the romantic and intimate dinner I had pictured but I don't think we would want it any other way.  Bennett first thing in the morning (fireman outfit).  I think he looks the most like a "Zickert" in the morning.  His face just looks like mine there.

ABOVE- Bennett has found my hair and I think he is never letting go!  Just laying there looking cute.  I think he may have his thumb in his mouth.  I thought he was going to be a "thumb sucker" but he tends to just be a finger suckers.  He doesn't discriminate.  He sucks them all.  But a pacifier?  Heck no.  But I'm going to keep trying...

ABOVE: Top- Taken on his 3 month birthday.  Bottom- My mom sent him his first Bible book.  It is the sweetest book.

 Top:  Sporting a knit black cap just like his Daddys.  I found it at Walmart for 50 cents.  I just couldn't pass it up.  I never shop at Walmart but I had a 15$ gift card to use up.

Bottom: Visiting me at work  Top:  Tummy time is bearable now for a few minutes at least

Top: Sitting in his NEW bathtub while mama gets ready for work.  He already outgrew his other bathtub.  I kid you not.  This boy grows like a weed!  Bottom:  Another sweet photo of tummy time.

And this cutie stole the hearts of all the woman on Facebook.  He is one popular fella. 
P.S He is in his crib now!  It is still in our room, but he is in our crib none the less!! 
P.S.S He spits up a lot more too.  Not sure what that is about.  And he has a teeny tiny bit of eczema on his elbows.  I'm going to try a different lotion before I really freak out. 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Back to Work

I went back to work this week.  And I started a new job.  Two huge events, but we made it through pretty well.

I have worried for weeks about how this would go.  Would Bennett take the bottle?  Would he feel abandoned?  Would Jeret feel too overwhelmed?  Would I fit into my new job?

Overall, the past three days were a success.  They were long... yes.  They were an adjustment... yes.  Am I tired... yes.  But I only had to work three days and I get to be home for four days in a row!! I feel very fortunate to be able to only work part time.

Since Bennett was born I have had these overwhelming maternal feelings (which I am pretty sure is normal for any new mom).  I was/am woken up to a hungry baby in the middle of the night,  I was never gone for longer than 1.5 or 2 hours for fear the baby would be hungry,  I didn't leave the house for weeks because it was too cold for the baby to go out.  I can honestly say I loved it all.  I didn't feel  alone or overwhelmed or tied down like people told me I would feel.  I wanted to always stay home with my baby!  He is just a tiny baby and he needed me and I couldn't leave him.

But then my practical husband stepped in.  He reminded me how much I enjoyed working with people and getting to know my patients.  He reminded me how hard I worked for four years to earn my degree.  He reminded me that Bennett will get bigger and more independent and working will be good for the both of us.

So, I did it.  And guess what?  We both survived.  I still wish that I didn't have to leave my sweet baby.  But I know that with all changes... the adjustment will take time.  I still worry that I won't be able to breastfeed as long as I had hoped because I am only able to pump at lunch time.  But that is ok.  I don't mind waking up an extra time in the middle of the night just to pump.  This baby stage is so short and goes so fast.  And if my milk does dry up, that is ok too.  Formula babies are healthy too.

This is the new normal and that is ok with me.
Jeret brought Bennett to visit during my lunch hour.  Just hanging out in the car.  

A quick picture I snapped this morning. 

Saturday, February 1, 2014


Bennett is sleeping on my lap as I type and rock.   The rocking is comforting to the both of us. Every single baby book I have read says not to rock your baby... they will get dependent on your rocking and your life will be ruined.  I don't buy it.  Bennett loves to be rocked.  And I love to rock him. And he goes to bed at night without being rocked.  So there.  Smartypants authors.  I also let him fall asleep while nursing!  Arrest me now.  
Time goes by too fast to worry about what all the parenting books say.  We do what works for us.  All I want is a healthy and happy baby.  

This onsie was gifted to us.  It is amazing.  It is our favorite.  It is soft and stretchy and has an elephant on it.  I decided I needed more of these onsies!  But then I realized they are 25$ a piece.  One will be fine. 

It is hard to tell from this angle but Bennett is adding a little of his own water into the tub :) 

Blurry but oh so happy.

The boys playing together

Me and my BFF.  The pump.  We have a great relationship and it's about to get closer when I go back to work Monday.

My boy and I.  Love him to pieces.  

Friday, January 24, 2014

Dear Bennett (2.5 months)

Hi Bennett,
You have been here for almost 3 months!  How has the time gone by so fast?  You have brought so much joy to my life.  Being a mom can be hard, but looking at your beautiful smile makes everything worth while. You love to talk.  If your dad and I are talking you will coo right along with us.  Taking the bottle has been up and down.  Some days you take it with no problem and other times you are not having it.  We have been busy exploring new places like the grocery store and restaurants.  We also like to walk around the mall.
Dad giving you a bottle before bed

Sleeping in my arms.  You completely spoil me by falling asleep in my arms during the day.  Some people may say I am spoiling you, but its the opposite you are spoiling me.  I love that time.

At your 2 month well visit.  You had to get three shots!  Oh my, did you cry and me too.  But your a healthy little guy and for that I am so thankful.

Cuddles after changing a poop everywhere diaper

A sleepy boy just after his bath

You love your tub whether there is water in it or not!

Family shot

My little fireman

Watching football on Sunday while your dad was at work

Grandma Patty came for a quick visit

That chin melts my heart

And your little feet do too

You look like such a big boy in this photo

Tummy time looking in the mirror

You found your thumb
I must say this second month has been my favorite month yet!