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Sunday, April 27, 2014

The Low-Down on Bubba!

Bubba turned the BIG 1 this month...and Mommy's heart broke just a little bit :(
He is the joy of our the best snuggles, smiles, and almost kisses.  We hate to leave him the morning and hurry home to him the afternoon...all of us, including his siblings...really, they love him just so much!  He is easy to tote along and makes the world smile when he flirts with whoever he sees.  We are loving watching his personality appear :)
Proof he cries once in a while :)

And again :)
Bubba's One-Year-Old Stats:
Weight - 17lb 13 oz (4.5%ile)
Height - 29in (14.42%ile)
He's tiny but determined!  We started with EI when he was about 10 months, expressing concerns with his slow/low weight gain and lack of interest in moving.  He gets PT twice a month and Nutrition twice a month...and they come to the house, which means one less place for Mommy to run!  We are loving that his EI coordinator and PT are the same that Sassy had and know our family so well :).  Right before his first birthday, he decided he would give crawling a try...and now he can't be stopped!  He is always on the move and loving his freedom and chance to follow the big ones!
His weight is increasing, slowly but surely!  We switched him to formula at about 10 months due to his possible milk allergy and have adjusted the "recipe" so he gets more calories than a normal bottle.  He LOVES his bottle and LOVES to eat.  We do some purees just to make life easy when we are out and about but he mostly eats what we eat!  He loves Five Guys burgers, chicken from the grill, pulled pork sandwiches, and lots of fruit and veggies!  It's hard to believe he's not gaining with the amount of food he eats!

Morning snuggles!

Who needs toys???
Bubba was a good sleeper :( 
He naps twice a day and usually goes down for the night about 8:30, after a bottle.  He sleeps soundly till about 7:30 in the morning.  We've learned he cannot "play toys" after that last bottle...or he won't sleep!  He has slept in our bedroom since he was born and just made the move to the guest room...a slow transition to his own bed in his own room with big brother, Bruiser!  I'm missing his "toning" that he uses to put himself back to sleep through the night :)

Sassy decided to dress him up as a princess...poor younger brother!

And that's our little guy who's trying to be big!

Friday, April 25, 2014

When We Became "That Family"

You know...that family...the one with epipens and the need to announce allergies as you sit down to dinner or arrive at a birthday party?  Yes, that is us...sadly...

Let's back up a bit...

In September, Daddy was driving with Tater and told her that she had an allergist appointment later that week for an asthma check-up.  She then proceeded to tell him how she ate a "nut" at Mimi and Papa's this past summer and it made her throat feel funny.  She said Mimi told her to drink some water and it went away.  Well, a funny throat and a nut isn't something you can ignore so Daddy shared this with the allergist.  Sure enough...she is extremely allergic to cashews and we now avoid all tree nuts to be on the safe side.  We earned our epipens and emergency procedure directions.  Tater now has a special bag to carry with her, just in case, and sits at the nut-free table at school for lunch.  We know which ice cream places are safe and try to avoid bakeries in general. 

It's a total life-change but we thought it was something we could handle...until...

...this is how Bubba's cheeks began to look.  At first it was a mystery.  Teething?  Sensitive skin?  Then we remembered that we had just started feeding him yogurt and introduced a milk-based formula to boost his weight.  Oh, yeah...milk allergy here we come!  And we're talking milk protein not just lactose...the big stuff...that's in absolutely everything!!!  I thought about cutting dairy from my diet to keep nursing him but he was more into the bottles and it was going to be quite a change for me with him not so into the nursing anymore.  So, we weaned him...and my heart broke a bit.  We found a formula that works (hypoallergenic) and cut all dairy from his diet.  And guess what?  His cheeks cleared up...immediately!  We have had a few relapses, like when I feed him Mum-Mums that were produced in a factory with milk...and when the kids fed him crackers after they had touched cheese.  Yeah...we think it's that severe...sigh...
We head to the allergist in May and hope to have a few more answers.  But thank god for coconut milk ice cream...because this boy does not like to watch him siblings eat and not get any!!!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Easter 2014

Easter was quiet at our house this year.  We were alone (meaning no one traveled to us and we traveled to no me, we were not alone with 4 kids!).  The bunny stopped by and the kids were thrilled with their loot (picture on the phone to come later!).
My one wish was to go to church as a family...and we were dressed, photo-ed, and in the car in time to make a 9:00am service!  And the kids all sat quietly (relatively!) and behaved! 
It was an Easter miracle!
We practiced with an egg hunt after the church service and then came home for the our own personal hunt courtsy of the Easter Bunny!  We found eggs filled with puzzle pieces...but no one was interested enough to assemble the puzzle yet...oh, well!

Someone enjoyed the grass...

and thought the leaves and sticks tasted pretty good :)

After a yummy brunch and some loot exploring, we headed outside to enjoy the beautiful day!

Too much!

Love this guy a little bit!

She smothers him...every. single. day.

Poor Bubba!

We headed out for a nice long walk on the bike path in the afternoon, played with the neighbors for a bit, and then had the traditional HAMburgers for dinner :)
It was a nice day spent as a family, celebrating the real reason for Easter, and enjoy our little life :)

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

And Then My Baby Turned 1!

When Bubba joined our "little" family a year ago, he was so tiny!  There was no way he was going to ever turn 1...I was sure he'd stay my baby forever :) 
Well, he's still tiny and still loves being my baby, with snuggles and coos...but like it or not, the calendar determined it was time for him to turn 1!
We headed to Papa and Mimi's house for the weekend (because Mommy and Papa had important concert tickets...priorities!) so we decided to celebrate Bubba a few weeks early!!
(And...since his real name was revealed on this blog when he was born...I've included his cakes with his real-life don't be confused when you don't see "Bubba" written on the cake!)

 A year of Bubba!

(nut-free cake again!)

With Great-Nana :)

Humoring Mommy with his crown

Dairy-free smash cake
(more on that in another post!)

covered in icing with help from his siblings :)

And he's 1!
Happy birthday, Bubba!
You came into our life as a great surprise and have kept us on our toes every minute of every day!  You are the sweetest snuggler and cutest smiler.  You can brighten any day and have brought joy to so many rough situations in your short little life.  You grow at your own pace and do things on your own timetable.  You have taught Mommy and Daddy patience and faith in ways we never knew.  You complete our family and have brought us such peace.  We love watching you turn into your own person and can't wait to see who you become.  Stay little a bit longer and keep snuggling :)
We love you more than...everything!

Woof! Woof! Somebody Turned 9!

Life has a way of getting in the way :) 
I took a much longer than planned blogging break and I've missed documenting our lives.
So without further ado... :)
Tater turned 9...yes, 9!!!! February.  With winter break, some traveling (that will come in a big iphone dump!), and sickness all around, it was just simpler to postpone her big celebration until March...and it couldn't have been better!
She requested a puppy party (yes, the girl who is allergic to dogs!) and Mommy complied, with a bit of help from Pinterest!  Our great friend was able to get us a hall to use (which translates to Mommy not having to clean the house for the party!) and we spent a few hours the night before setting up (just the mommies!).  Tater was thrilled to walk in the day of the party and see all the decorations!
Nut-free "pupcakes" for my tree-nut allergy girl
 (I guess that's a post to share!)

Make a puppy toy

Decorate a box to take your puppy home

The treat table :)


Paint your paws (manis!)

Lunch for the little guy :)

The bigger middle!

The little middle!

adopting puppies


Food time!

Fun was had by all...even this little one, who practiced holding the balloons for his up-coming special day :)
We cleaned up and were on our way to Ikea (as a reward for Mommy!) within a half-hour!
Happy birthday, Tater! 
You were the first piece of this wonderful crazy puzzle that we call our family.  You taught us how to be a mommy and a daddy.  You've shown us how to love unconditionally and without hesitation.  You exude enthusiasm and compassion and thoughtfulness.  You have blessed us in countless ways and keep us guessing and endlessly test our patience :)  We wouldn't change a second of our life with you...except to slow it down and keep you little a bit longer!
We love you around the universe and back again!