Wednesday, November 30, 2011

New Phase

I think we've hit the frustrated with not being able to communicate clearly phase. It's a big side effect of our boy not talking yet. (I think most toddlers hit this phase a little earlier.) With any luck, this will motivate him to finally start speaking English! He mostly likes to moan and grunt at us, but he talks in a lot more diverse syllables when talking to himself. We're giving him until the end of the year to bust out some words, if not then we'll have him evaluated.

Anyway... one fun thing was his first little fit the other day. It was minor enough to be kinda comical. We sat him on his little rocking chair for a brief time out and he got mad at us. He wanted to hit Nerdstar and when she wouldn't let him, he started hitting the floor, then the desk chair, then the desk. He's done a lot of baby "protesting" this was a step towards bigger and better things. Heh.

Mostly, that little fit made us realize just how good a kid he's been so far!! It kind of leaves us ill-equipped to deal with him when he's not so good.

At his 15 month check up the doc asked if he had walked backwards, and we thought that was a weird milestone. Then last week he took a few steps backwards and it's honestly just the cutest thing! No idea why.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Just a few more thoughts and reflections about Noah's ER trip

Needless to say, it was quite an adventure that we've had in the last day or so with Noah's ER trip! I am very thankful that the ER staff took care of Noah in a prompt and somewhat organized manner! I am also very glad that Noah is doing a lot better!

However, it was quite a scare for all of us, this marks the third trip to the ER in less than 2 years. It started with my broken ankle (see entry from Sept.-Oct. of 2010), Beth had an GI issue, and now Noah's peanut allergy. Not counting the trips with the pets to the pet clinic, I really hope that we will not have to be at the ER for a long time!

Some observations:

1. With Noah's peanut allergy, that rules out us dining at the "Five Guys" fine dining establishment. I mean, not only are all of their products cooked in peanut oil, but just look at the buckets upon buckets of peanuts at the joint, it's a death trap!

2. Mr. Peanut, instead of being some kind of a friendly, food product related mascot, will instead be the image of the angel of death to Noah, maybe one day Noah will use a cutout of him as a target for target shooting practice.

3. The ER staff at our local hospital were really professional and nice, even though none of then looked like Dr. Cater or Nurse Hathaway....I guess that's ok.

That is all for now.

An Update

Noah seems none the worse for wear today. He woke up about 8 a.m. and was his usual cheerful self. He did end up napping from about 10 a.m. to just after 1 p.m., which is a little early for his nap. He's eaten normally and played normally.

We think his mouth and eye still had a little swelling, but the meds they prescribed seem to have already helped with that.

I must say the people at the ER were really great. They took his case seriously as soon as we walked in, they were friendly and efficient, they did what was necessary but didn't try to do more than that. We got there at 7:30 p.m. and left at 11:30 p.m.

We were able to hear some of what was going on in the next one or two rooms next to us. It was sad to hear about a 41 y/o woman brought in unresponsive. She was more stable later, but we have no idea what happened or why. Other than that it was a fairly quiet ER for a Saturday night.

I think Nerdstar and I are both pretty tired today, physically and emotionally. In some ways it's not a huge deal, in other ways it's a lot to process.

It's weird to know that there's at least one food out there that could potentially kill him.

We know there's been a lot of progress in schools and other environments regarding food allergies - and it's several years before that's even an issue for us. Our prayer is that he'll outgrow this over time.

We're going to follow up with his pediatrician's office tomorrow and see if we need to take him in and when we should see a pediatric allergist. We're really not sure at what age what kinds of allergy tests are accurate.

We're not really that worried about him, it's just an adjustment in going about life.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

A Trip To The ER

We're always trying to think of new foods for Noah to try and of ways to expand his food horizons. He still eats about the same 12 or 13 things he's been eating since he started solids.

I was hoping peanut butter was something he would like and might would lead to eating sandwiches and such. So, I got a little peanut butter on my finger and put it in his mouth.

Within minutes he started having an allergic reaction. When his eyelid started to swell, I knew it was time to head to the ER.

On the way there I thought about how I'd heard it's best to call 911 than to try to drive to the ER yourself, but he was breathing ok and the reaction wasn't getting worse and it was about 10 more minutes to the ER.

Once we got there, they were great and got him back and started treating him right away. They started an IV, gave him two or three different things, one of which was benedryl, then after a couple of minutes gave him an epi shot.

It didn't really take that long for the swelling to start to go down, they were obviously concerned with his airway, but he never did have trouble breathing.

They observed him for a couple of hours, we were there for less than four, and he slept about the last hour.

Sigh. That really sucked. But, now we know he's allergic to peanuts. At least we were both home and were able to get him to the ER quickly and safely.

He's sleeping now.

We have to find a way to have an epi pen handy all the time. Of course, we'll have one in the house, but neither of us carries a purse - and we don't have a diaper bag, we just carry a lunch container for his snacks with a diaper and wipes in the top compartment when we go eat. So we're going to have to find a way to keep one close when we're out and about.

I'm sure it hasn't sunk in for either of us the longer term little (or big) changes this means. Our prayer is he outgrows it over time.

Friday, November 25, 2011

The Tough Questions

Having been disappointed with The Walking Dead, I checked out World War Z from the library.

Wow. After it scares you, and then fills you with dread, it makes you think.

We've all seen so many post-apocalypse, post-alien invasion, etc, movies. I think while we're watching them we all envision ourselves as not only the survivors, but the over-comers. That's probably not very realistic. (hahaha, yes I know I said realistic in talking about post-alien invasion scenarios!)

Of course, having Noah changes everything. That's where the tough questions come in.

Do I even want to survive one of those scenarios? Life is going to be hell for a long time to come. Does it matter if the threat - alien or sickness or zombie - is over and it's just a matter of rebuilding from nothing, or if the threat has no end in sight?

Do I kill all of us and end the chance of suffering with the faith that there is a heaven and afterlife? Do I hand Noah off to people better able to survive and take care of him in safety? (Hell, just think of all the kids from WWII separated from their parents for any number of reasons.) I sure as hell don't hand him over to the aliens to start over on some distant planet like the asinine scene in Knowing.

Anyway. This is how my brain works. World War Z is a hell of a book that won't leave you feeling at all optimistic about any world catastrophe.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Poor Ramen

Many years ago there was a woman on tv who was a pet psychic. Nerdstar loved that show. She has always wanted to be able to "talk" with the pets. She's been worried about Ramen since the cats died, and since we've had Noah. He has seemed a little less energetic.

We've been reading John Katz for several years. I don't envy his life on the farm only because he really conveys how much hard work it is. Nerdstar has always wanted lots of animals around.

Anyway, he has recently written about Jeannie, a pet psychic he knows and is working with, one animal at a time. We figured if he trusted her, it was worth giving a try.

Yesterday, we spoke with her on the phone for about 30 minutes. Apparently, we've bored Ramen to death. He kept showing her that he really wants to be outdoors more, to have more walks and to be able to even run around off leash sometimes. He's a dog's dog and wants more of a dog's life - outside running around and smelling things. The back yard is nice, but he wishes we were outside with him more. She said that even though he's 13 years old, he feels like he's 3. If we can provide more outdoor, walking, running time, he'll really "come back to life".

He's not upset about the cats not being around. We knew they weren't close. And he's fine with Noah being here.

He said he listens to me more than Nerdstar because I'm more clear and direct, and it makes him feel safer. So she's going to work on that and on taking him for more walks. We pretty much stopped walking him once we got the back yard for him.

There are a few problems with the off leash dog parks in our area. They're not all that close to where we live. They're in the process of setting up one in our area, but that's still months away. The bigger problem is they don't allow kids under 9 or 10 in with the dogs. And while I understand that - it's a pain in the butt to not be able to let them both run around in the same area.

It's a shame we're finding this out right as the cold weather is setting in. We'll do what we can until it warms up and then hopefully really find him some areas and times to be a dog.

We feel like she had some basic but good insight into Ramen, so it was cool.

Friday, November 11, 2011

15 Months

Noah had his 15 month check up yesterday. He's officially a tall, skinny boy - 73% for height and 40% for weight. We've actually fattened him up just a little bit, he was at 30% for weight.

The doc was a little concerned that he isn't saying any words yet. I've generally felt that while he's obviously a smart kid, he's sometimes behind on things, and that's ok with us. We know boys are slower in some areas, and he's usually not too far behind. We're going to give him a few more weeks to start speaking English.

He's definitely getting better at understanding what we tell him. When he's hungry he's been in the habit of coming to me and pulling on my shirt and yelling at me. So I ask him if he's hungry and he says "uh-huh" and I ask if he wants a snack and he says "uh-huh". Then I tell him, "ok, let's go to the kitchen" and he heads to the kitchen and to his high chair. It's so cute. Eventually he'll just go stand by his high chair when he's hungry.

The one thing he tends to get into upstairs is the books on our bookshelves, he likes to pull one or two off the shelf, but he doesn't tear them up or anything. I'm working on taking his hand and having him walk away while saying "walk away". With any luck I can train him to literally walk away from things he's getting into. We'll see, I know that's pretty optimistic.

The most fun thing he's doing lately is when we're all in his room he'll take about 3 steps towards the door and turn around and babble at us until we say "ok" then he'll take 3 more steps and repeat until he's out in the hall. Then he'll take off down the hall and wait for us to say "Where's Noah? Where did he go?" Then he'll come running back down the hall into his room and we'll say "Yah -there he is!!" Easiest way ever for us to play hide and seek!!

I always knew I wasn't a baby person, and said just hand me the kid when it can walk and talk. Every day I find him more and more fun. He makes me laugh every day. And oh boy, once he can actually talk... we literally can't wait to see what he tells us!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Happy early Veteran's Day!

This is not an ad for the Java Monster brand of beverage, I simply posted this picture of me and my soldiers in uniform if some of you guys/gals had not seen me in uniform before.


I can't believe that I am now a full-fledged veteran! So, a day early, I'm going to wish my fellow veterans a happy veteran's day! Now, I know that many of you would like to buy me a beer or something, but due to the distance and the logistic concern, most of you faithful readers are unable to, but I still will thank you from the bottom of my heart! Now, for those of you who will be buying me beers, I'm not that hard to please, I like Guinness, Fat Tire, Pyramid Apricot Ale, and anything else that does not start with the letter B and end with a R!

Or, if you see someone in uniform at a restaurant or some place, offer to pay their meal or buy them a cup of joe, I know that they'll really appreciate it!

Also, worth mentioning is that veteran's day is sort of for Noah Maxx also! As some of you might know, his donor is in the navy, or at least he was when he donated his swimmers. I was, at the time of Noah Maxx's conception, a second lieutenant in the army, so Noah Maxx is our army/navy baby! Happy veteran's day, Noah Maxx, and when/if it's your time to enlist, I hope you'll go air force! :-)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

From what seems like almost a million years ago...


I am so excited for Noah because he is just so darn happy now that he can walk around. He's wanted to be in motion for most of his life, and he finally is. He walks around chattering and laughing. He's very close to running.

Somehow we missed the memo on the overdrive switch (or invisible meth drip) that comes with walking. We're assuming he's in a big growth spurt because he's been eating about twice the amount he was eating. Now, he's not eating any new foods yet, just a lot more of the regulars. When he's not eating, he's walking and walking and playing and walking. Yesterday he didn't nap until 4 pm, and then only for an hour. Thankfully, today he napped from 11 am to about 1:15. He's also waking up hungry in the night sometimes. I told Nerdstar it'd be nice if there was some sort of bottle holder thing like in hamster cages for his crib.

Also, for the first time, I've sent Noah out and about with Nerdstar without me. I've got the whole house to myself without having to worry about when he's going to wake up! They're going to lunch with some friends and then to the Korean grocery store. I told him he had to be good for her like he is for me!

A couple of funny pics:

This is him hanging out the pet door. In addition to throwing toys/books down the stairs, he also throws them out the pet door. Fun. He also yells at Ramen when Ramen is outdoors.

For some reason, he's decided that this shelf of his changing table is a great place to take breaks when playing.