Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Is He Four Yet?

Ugh. Just experienced The Worst Tantrum Ever. At least, the worst we've ever seen.

At one point I couldn't do anything but laugh because I was fairly certain Finn no longer remembered why he was screaming at me.

Three is a trying age.

Lucy, right next door, fell asleep and slept through it all. Is a total peach. Is it terrible that I have fleeting thoughts like "Can I trade Finn for five more of her"?

Am now fast-chilling a bottle of wine so M. and I can calm our frayed nerves. Unplanned and oh so deserved.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


I was dumbfounded by an ad I saw in Parenting magazine last night. Which I only read because it was lying there and free - M. has a categorical hate for all parenting-type magazines because they portray dads in such a negative light, and I have to say I agree with him.

The ad? Apparently Enfamil is now making a formula called "RestFull" Lipil. Designed to help babies feel full longer and sleep better. How so, exactly? "Enfamil RestFull is specially designed to thicken gently in your baby's tummy, and digest slowly. For a natural way to keep your baby feeling satisfied. So you both can rest better." Yes, that last sentence is actually bolded in their ad.

This just drives me crazy. First of all, natural? I'm sure there's nothing natural at all about whatever is in that formula to cause it to "thicken gently" in baby's tummy. What exactly are they putting in there? Second, I see this as yet another weapon in the arsenal to get moms to give up breastfeeding. Oh, you're exhausted because baby is waking up two or three times a night? Just try giving them a bottle of our special formula and they'll sleep so much better. One bottle at night won't hurt... And third, exactly how many types of formula do we need on the market? Enfamil's website has 10 different infant formulas alone, and also offers a variety of supplements and toddler products. Some of the different types are a necessity, of course, like the ones for premature babies and babies with food intolerances. But many simply prey on parents' insecurities, promising better brain development and stronger immune systems. Or in this case, they're preying on parents' exhaustion, a universal in new parenthood. Could they try any harder to make money off of us?

Please don't think this post is designed to bash formula-feeding moms. I'm one of them. I'm also supportive of moms that mix breastmilk and formula feeding, because I used to be one of those, too. I just can't believe that Enfamil is going to convince moms and dads that babies who don't sleep well at night can be "fixed." Sleeping is a developmental process. Either your baby is ready to sleep 11 hours at a time, or he/she is not. Nothing you feed them will make a difference. And in all likelihood, this stuff will give them so much gas that they'll be sleeping worse than ever. Don't fall for it, dear readers!!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Halloween Debrief

Lucy is napping and Finn is engrossed in an episode of Blue's Clues, so I shall steal a few moments to post pictures from Halloween weekend. I will caption a few, but to put things in perspective, my parents were visiting for the weekend. It was the first time my dad had met Lucy, and my mom hadn't seen her since she was about a week old. Grandparent bias aside, they were much impressed with her good nature and cuteness. In addition to trick-or-treating (which was rainy and thus brief), M. and my dad undertook the installation of a ceiling fan in our living room. Mom and I took the kids and did what we do best - went shopping.

I shall also mention before the pixel dumping that Lucy is doing much better. She is back to sleeping well, and as of this morning her digestive tract issuance is practically normal. Huzzah! We're still giving her the hydrolyzed formula and being cautious with her solid food diet, but we're getting there.

So, here you go, more pictures than anyone except my grandmother probably wants to see.

Lucy looks almost as big as Finn here!

Thursday the 29th was party day at daycare, so I managed to get Finn to wear a polo shirt (buttons, gasp!) because it was orange.

The costume Lucy was supposed to wear, a hand-me-down from her cousins that was also worn by her month-older cousin Cameron this year, was deemed too tight.


M. tries his hand at decorating the strange niche we have way up high in our living room.

The idea of my mom climbing up the 12 foot ladder was quickly vetoed by those of us with sanity.

Finished projects: the decorated niche (shopping for varied non-functional objects by yours truly and my mother) and the ceiling fan (blood, sweat and tears courtesy of M. and my dad).

This robot has stuck in Finn's memory since last Halloween, when he was too scared to approach for candy. This year, with M., me, Lucy and my dad there to bolster his confidence, he managed to score some candy from the robot's stash.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Mish Mash

A few unrelated thoughts for you today:

1) Lucy has discovered her feet. M. and I are both amazed that she is able to reach around the chub of her thighs to hold them. Is there anything cuter than a smiling baby lying on her back, holding both her feet? Insanely adorable.

2) Finn has taken to calling us "Mama" and "Dada." A sign of regression, of course, as he has been using "Mommy" and "Daddy" for years, with even the occasional "Mom" and "Dad" thrown in. Regression or not, though, it's just so endearing! This morning he woke up and shouted from his room, "Mama, Mama, I don't want to sleep all day!" See above re: insanely adorable.

3) Am I the only one who is astounded by how much radio play U2 is getting lately? Maybe it's just the DC area, as they were here recently in concert. Or the lack of variety in the radio stations set in my car. Regardless, I just, I don't know - I can't help but roll my eyes every time one of their songs comes on. Sure, a great band, lots of great songs back in the day, but I just can't take it anymore. Maybe it's because Bono was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Am I to take him seriously as a musician or a humanitarian? Because I'm not sure I can do both.

4) As M. and I are in the market for a new car, it has become a habit to check out all other vehicles on the road for consideration. Hence my discovery yesterday of the latest in a series of "They named the car WHAT?" observations. Joining the ranks of vehicles like the Nissan Armada (an unsuccessful [in 1588 at least] Spanish naval fleet?) and the Hyundai Genesis (getting back to our biblical roots, yo) is the Isuzu Axiom. Not a new car, as I discovered when I Googled it (produced from 2002-2004). But I guess I don't know anyone that actually drives an Isuzu, so new knowledge to me. Seeing the car, I was instantly transported back to high school mathematics. Which I'm sure is exactly what Isuzu was going for, right? Just the association you want with a rugged SUV. What's up next, a pick-up truck called the Isuzu Postulate?

5) The title of this post brings back another memory of my youth. MASH. Ah, the hours wasted coming up with different choices for career, husband, places to live, salary, and various other minutae of your supposed future life. If it was your own MASH, you try tried to make every option better than the next. But in designing your friends' MASHes, you always had to throw in a couple of real lemons. Then there'd be lots of squealing about, "OMG, I'm going to live in a shack with Weird Al and 10 kids?!" Good times.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Just when you think you know what your doing, something changes

I have many pictures to upload from last week/weekend, and will get around to it one of these days. For now, though, M. and I are being exhausted by a little girl who is waking up multiple times a night. Not because I jinxed myself by telling the Blogosphere what a wonderful baby she is (wonderful baby she definitely is), but because her good humor is being challenged by an intestinal malady.

What type of intestinal malady, you might ask? Hmm. Well, it started as what we thought was some run-of-the-mill diarrhea on Monday (preceeded by a couple of messy blow-outs the day before). My mind immediately turned to swine flu, and I waited with baited breath for the fever, vomiting, congestion, etc that I was sure was headed our way, a mere week before the kids are scheduled to be vaccinated (hope I'm not jinxing myself on that one, ye keepers of the much desired but rarely obtained swine flu vaccine!! (Shakes fist)). But no other symptoms, aside from a lovely blushing rose-colored rash on her hiney and some fussiness, materialized. We kept Lucy home from daycare for the requisite 24 hours, and when things didn't look better on the loose stool front Wednesday morning, kept her home again. Since Tuesday night was fraught with middle-of-the-night wake-ups and fussiness, we also planned a trip to the doctor.

M. and I envisioned the typical doctor's appointment with an over-reacting parent. Temperature, ears, throat, lungs are all checked, to no avail. Parents are told, "It's just a virus, dummy, wait it out and hydrate," or "Loose stools are a common sign of teething, dummy, wait it out and hydrate." Perhaps with a slightly less condescending tone, of course. Never did we imagine what we (M., really, since he was on SAHD duty while I was at work) would be told that Lucy has a protein intolerance. Yes, you heard that right, suddenly, at over 6 months old, apparently Lucy can no longer tolerate the milk protein in her formula.

We are a bit dumfounded. Other than Lucy's initial problems with infrequent pooping when she was a newborn, we have had no reason to suspect that she had any problems with her formula (Enfamil Gentlease). For months she has been sleeping well, very happy, very few bouts of diaper rash, only one runny nose - basically no symptoms of an intolerance (different from an allergy, by the way, though I'm not exactly sure how). So we think the doctor may be jumping the gun a little. The diagnosis is based on some blood that was found in Lucy's stool. My first thought is that the blood could be from ALL THE POOPING she's been doing, but what do I know, right?

According to the doctor this could be temporary. We are putting Lucy on Alimentum (hydrolized) formula, and if things get better apparently we can try her back on her regular formula in a few weeks (once her intestines are healed). We also have the fun of collecting stool samples for testing over the next few days (I suppose I shouldn't complain since it's just a swipe of the dirty diaper, but still, ew).

Again, I am skeptical. Anything I have ever read about protein intolerance is that "temporary" = "a couple of years." As in, maybe when your kid is 2 or 3 they can handle drinking cow's milk. Not 4 weeks temporary. And I'm not sure why she would seem so healthy, and then suddenly present with an intolerance. Also, why, exactly, are we ruling out a viral or bacterial infection just because there was blood in Lucy's stool? (I guess the doctor is also basing this on the lack of any other symptoms - like vomiting? - that often co-present.) So, yeah, lots of questions remain. We'll just see how things go. We are following the doctor's suggestion because at this point, we just want Lucy to be comfortable again. If it has a chance of working, we'll try it.

On a different note, this is apparently my 100th post. Woo hoo!

Sunday, November 1, 2009