Saturday Picnic

by Kayte

We packed a picnic lunch and headed to the park for the afternoon. The weather was hot, but breezy enough that we were comfortable in the shade. After we ate, Brody took the kids (one by one) for a bike ride around the pond. It was a fun afternoon.


Urinalysis

by Kayte

At our last pediatrician visit Max & Lola both had a urinalysis lab. Lola’s came back with a high level of protein, which usually means a contaminated sample, so we went back today for a repeat.

The nurse collects the sample by taping on a bag and waiting for the kid to pee. It took over an hour for Lola to go! Even though there were toys to play with, Max and Lola are not very content to sit in a doctor’s office these days. It was a long, tough afternoon – not how we wanted to spend our free day.

On a good note – Lola’s lab came back negative (good)!


Routine

by Kayte

I noticed on the “One Year Ago Today” widget that I had posted our routine as it stood last May. It was interesting to compare with what our days are like now. The timing hasn’t changed too much, but the substance has. The biggest difference is no more nursing/pumping, and the fact that Max & Lola eat real food (no purees).

7:30pm – 7:00am
Max & Lola still sleep through the night – all night, every night.

7:00am
Wake Up! Max & Lola start the day laughing and yelling at each other from their cribs…our own personal alarm clocks 🙂

7:30am
Diaper change for both. Max spends some time on the potty.

8:00am
Drinks. Lola gets her body-builder protein shake, Max has a glass of milk, and Mom & Dad have coffee. Cook breakfast.

8:30am
Breakfast. I usually try to do some sort of protein (eggs, sausage, bacon), fresh fruit, and a carb (toast, waffles, oatmeal).

9:00am
Nap Ritual. Brush teeth, change diapers, sleep sacks, read a book.

9:30am – 11:30am
Morning Nap. This is still their most consistent nap of the day. While they sleep I wash breakfast dishes, clean up the toys, hang laundry to dry and study for the CPA exam. At least this year there is a light at the end of the CPA tunnel (August!?).

11:30am
Wake up. Diaper change. Cook lunch.

12:00pm
Lunch. This is usually our least successful meal of the day, which makes sense since Max & Lola probably don’t get too hungry while they’re just sleeping for two hours. I try to do something quick & easy…leftovers, veggies/hummus, quesadilla/avocado, etc.

12:30pm – 2:30pm
Four days a week this time is reserved for therapy – PT (x2), OT and CDS (x2). On our one free day we usually have to fit in some sort of doctor appointment, but every once in awhile we go out and have fun.

2:30pm
Snack. Usually fresh fruit, but sometimes ice cream (if it’s hot or they’ve had a tough therapy session) or something I’ve made (banana bread). They usually eat more at snack time than at lunch time, so I try to keep it pretty healthy.

3:00pm
Nap Ritual. Change diapers, sleep sacks, read a book.

3:30pm – 5:30pm
Afternoon Nap. Most kids Max & Lola’s age aren’t still taking two naps a day, but they seem to need this. The few times I’ve tried to skip it they have been crank-y. Which is fine by me since I still need all the time I can get to study.

5:30pm
Wake up. Diaper change. Cook dinner.

6:00pm
Dinner. I try to do a protein (fish, chicken, tofu) and two veggies (broccoli, peas, sweet potatoes, zucchini, etc.)

7:00pm
Bedtime Ritual. Max & Lola get a yogurt right before bed. Then we brush teeth, change daispers, PJs, sleep sacks, read (3) books, white noise and Zzzz…

7:30pm – 10:30pm
This is still the most relaxing part of the day. We cook dinner, watch a show and catch up on the day. I do a little reading before bed then hit the hay early because I’m exhausted and everything is on instant-replay starting tomorrow morning!


Beach Cruiser

by Kayte

Our awesome neighbors gave us this bike seat their girls had grown out of, so Max & Lola got to go on their first bike ride today! The pictures say it all. Max wanted “More, more.” Lola needs some time to warm up to the idea.


OT @ the Park

by Kayte

We met our OT at the park for our therapy session today. It was so nice to get out of the house for the afternoon – I felt like we were playing hooky!

OT with our new therapist is going great! Both Max and Lola liked her right away. She’s so engaging with them and I actually see a difference now after our sessions. Not only do Max & Lola take LONG naps after she leaves, but it’s like she cuts something loose inside. Max tends to be fairly reserved, but in the day(s) after our sessions he gets goofy and runs around like a crazy, laughing, 2-year old. It’s good to see.

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Liftoff

by Kayte

Lola has been making steady but slow progress in PT. She will walk, but on her terms. Her balance and control are both great – she has the mechanics, now we just need to work on the motivation.

Lately Lola has been doing a lot of cruising along walls and furniture. She’ll pull herself up almost anywhere (chairs, door frames, etc) and surf from object to object. The next step is to convince her to let go of her safety nets and walk into the void. She did it for the very first time on Friday, and is getting bolder each day. Go Lola!


Potty Time

by Kayte

At last week’s pediatrician visit the doc said we should start thinking about potty training. For some reason I always assumed we would potty train Max & Lola at the same time, and that it was pointless to start until Lola could walk. But as we talked more I realized it might actually be easier to potty train one at a time. It sure would be nice to have half the diapers to wash!

I still need to do some research and form a game plan before starting in earnest, but in the meantime we’ve been sitting Max on his potty a few times a day to get him used to the idea. No direct hits yet, but Max sure thinks it is fun. Especially when he has some good reading material.

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Tooth Update

by Kayte

It’s been a long time (3 months!) since we’ve had any new teeth. Max is finally getting his upper and lower canines on the right for a total of 14. Lola is holding strong at 16 – no sign of two-year molars just yet.

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Speech Evaluation

by Kayte

Max & Lola had their speech evaluation today and it went really well! Much more in line with how we thought they were doing versus how they scored at the NICU clinic. They were each tested on both expressive and receptive communication. Expressive communication is the ability to put thoughts into words, and receptive communication is the ability to understand words. Max was only 1 month delayed in both expressive and receptive. Lola was 1 month delayed in expressive and 3 months delayed in receptive…but my hunch is that her receptive score had more to do with attitude than comprehensive. Little miss knows exactly what is going on. So that was great news. It made me feel a lot better about our evaluation of Max & Lola’s progress.

In addition to receptive/expressive communication, there is also a component called articulation – making the sounds. (Speech is complicated!) All kids start off speaking in a language only their parents understand (water = wahwah) and gradually improve with practice. The speech therapist assessed that Max & Lola were a little delayed in their articulation (although she couldn’t quantify it). She pointed out how Lola’s jaw moves slightly side-to-side when she talks instead of up and down.

The therapist is going to recommend speech services, but there’s a good chance we won’t get approved since Max & Lola aren’t technically delayed enough to qualify. At this point I would be fine either way – we sure don’t need any more on our plate, but fully-funded services are only available for another year so we might as well take advantage while we can. So now we just wait and see.


Wellness Visit

by Kayte

We had our wellness visit with the pediatrician today. We barely had any questions to ask, and everything with Max & Lola checked out great.

It was a little overwhelming to summarize all the specialties we’re still following up with…PT, orthopedic examination, OT, CDS, speech evaluation, hearing screen, GI, endocrinologist, ophthalmologist. We also need to start taking Max & Lola to the dentist. And I thought we had fewer doctors in the mix!

Max gained a lot of weight since our last visit…11oz in two weeks. He’s now 25lb 12oz and on the charts in the 10-25th percentile for a regular 2yr-old – no adjusting.

Lola only gained 2oz in the same time period, but she’s gained less in a month before so I’m happy. She was 18lb 8oz today, still skinny-mini, BUT the doc said she was 3rd percentile for height (unadjusted) and she’s never been on any chart before so that’s great. We’ve been noticing that Lola is too long for a lot of her 9-month sized clothes even though she’s still within the weight limits, so now I guess we know why.


Mother’s Day Sushi

by Kayte

Today was a great Mother’s Day! Brody made breakfast while I snuggled in bed with the kids. We had nice FaceTime chats with our long-distance moms. Max & Lola gave me chocolates and hand-made cards. And we all went out together for a sushi lunch.

At our last wellness visit the doc said Max & Lola were old enough to eat raw fish, and we’ve been wanting to try it ever since. I was surprised how much they both liked it. Lola at least tried everything, and Max absolutely chowed. He even stole a piece of sushi off my plate while I wasn’t looking! They ate edamame, miso soup, tempura vegetables, shrimp, spicy tuna, California roll, salmon, pickled ginger and more. It was a very enjoyable lunch outing.

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Happy Mother’s Day to ALL the moms out there!


 


Omeprazole

by Kayte

We put Lola on reflux meds a little over a month ago to see if it would help with her self-gagging issues. When we didn’t see any change we figured the meds weren’t making a difference, and Lola was scheduled for a GI endoscopy.

But then her big weight gain month overlapped with the medication, and we wondered.

And then when we finally ran out of the reflux meds and stopped using them, she started throwing up at least one meal daily. Hmm.

So today we called the GI back to discuss. He said sometimes when a person goes off reflux meds the stomach produces a large amount of acid to compensate, which could cause the throwing up. But, Lola used to throw up meals at least a few times a week pre-meds, and we didn’t notice her doing that at all this last month. We were so focused on the meds as they related to her gagging, we might have missed the fact that she was throwing up less (and gaining weight!).

The GI told us to continue with the reflux meds and check back with him in a week. If Lola stops throwing up, he will postpone the endoscopy for a few months and consider the meds as a long-term treatment. It would be both frustrating and amazing if something as simple as these reflux meds was the solution to Lola’s eating/growth issues!


47 Steps!

by Kayte

Lola took 47 unassisted steps in PT today! It’s amazing how she responds to the therapist. Brody and I worked with her all weekend, but couldn’t shake that pinky finger of support. Then the therapist showed up and Lola just stood up from her knee and took off. PT has the magic touch.

Even if we can’t get the same solo results as the therapist, Brody and I have been working with Lola LOTS. She will walk between the two of us, walk using the Weerol, walk all over the house holding our fingers. We’re trying to show her that walking is the way to get from place to place. It seems to be working. Lola will ask to practice walking (waahh!?) and today we found her pushing the Weerol across the living room. She’s never pulled herself up on it by herself before. She also doesn’t get hysterically upset when she loses her balance and sits down mid-walk. Definite progress!




Measuring Stick

by Kayte

Nana Bah sent Max & Lola a giant ruler for their birthday! Keeping a growth chart was a childhood tradition in Brody’s family and one we are excited to continue. The neat thing about the ruler (vs. the back of a closet door) is that we can take it with us if we ever move to a new house. Today Lola was 2’6″ and Max was 2’8″.

Thanks Nana Bah!

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35 Steps

by Kayte

Today’s PT went even better than I dared to hope! Lola walked. And walked. And walked and walked and walked. She set a personal best of 35 steps -completely unassisted. The best part was Lola’s attitude. She was happy. She was proud. She was having fun! There was no crying or resisting. She didn’t even freak out when she fell a few times – just took it all in stride.

I managed to get a good video of her taking 25 steps. She even stands up on her own! Someday soon we will have two little toddlers toddling around the house.




Leg Warmers

by Kayte

We’ve been working Lola hard this week. By the instruction of our PT we have her in the “leg warmers” multiple times a day. We practice sitting, standing and walking. Amazingly Lola doesn’t mind too much, as long as we keep her entertained. Even more importantly, they seem to be working. Lola has been standing straighter, balancing more easily, and generally moving more confidently. I’m excited to see how PT goes tomorrow.

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