Monday, April 28, 2014

Busy, Busy

We went out of town thr last two weekends in a row so things have just been really busy. Flu season in CA ends around the end of April, so we've be slowly venturing out and about. First, a community Easter egg hunt. Then a birthday party and the Aquarium of the Pacific. It's scary getting out of our protective cocoon, but I really want Dylan to get some interaction with kids and I want him to get to do all of the other normal kid things. We skipped two winter birthday parties and have never been to Gymboree or story time at the library and I don't have a regular play group... But this summer we at branching out!

We stayed at a family member's house last weekend, with Dylan in a Pack n Play in the bathroom. Bedtime was tough but overnight was fine. This week we got a cheap suite hotel so we could watch a movie after Dylan's bedtime.

I highly recommend the Aquarium of the Pacific if you're ever in Long Beach!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Quick Post

We have our 3rd appointment at the High Risk Follow-Up Clinic today...wish us luck! He goes to the Follow-Up Clinic because he was born at 25 weeks and will go until age 4. At each appointment we meet with a Pediatrician who specializes in Neonatology (who also works in the NICU), OT/ PT, a nurse, and sometimes the social worker. I feel comforted knowing that we will catch any major issues early.

Issues we will be discussing today:

1) Iron (Dylan has ZERO iron. I have a post in the works... Feeding him is a crazy puzzle that I don't entirely feel qualified to solve. I think I'm going to ask for a referral back to the Nutritionist.)

2) Autism Concerns (I do not think he has Autism, but he has a few behaviors that I want to ask experts about: hand flapping, no reaction to strong negative emotions although he does react to smiles and does initiate eye contact, fear of loud noises - even no so loud.) I worked with kids with Autism for my first year out of college so I feel relatively well informed, but I don't have experience with kids younger than 3. Also Dylan has tons of the risk factors for Autism: older father, antepartum stress, premature I'm just taking every detail very seriously just in case.

3) Lungs (Dylan's breathing has been a little more noticeable over the past month or so, but the Ped has never heard an issue. I want the specialists to weigh in. He was also wheezing for about 5 minutes this weekend - before and after throwing up - it's probably just a bug, but I want to mention it.)

4) Milestones (We are definitely not winning any races with walking or talking, but I'm not really concerned...yet. He is adding new words and starting to occasionally mimic. And he's climbing on chairs and strollers and couches...just not walking yet, but he's not 18 months adjusted for a few more months.)

I'll report back soon!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Eighteen Months!

I think I need to do one of those typical "baby updates" in honor of Dylan reaching one and a half years old. I feels like he has been a part of our lives forever, but he's also still a "baby" so it feels a little strange to think of him as 18 months old.

Height: 28.5 (We started a wall chart in honor of his half birthday!)
Weight: 18 lbs (It's taken a LOT of work to get to 18, so I'm pretty proud of that number.)

Favorite Foods: 
Peas, cottage cheese, and baked ziti are the definite favorites. He usually likes black bean patties with cheese, meatballs, muffins, toast with pb and most foods. He just had his first taste of ice cream (Organic Strauss Family Creamery Raspberry) and he didn't like it the first time, but he did eat a fair amount last night.

Least Favorite Foods: 
Peaches - spits them right out. I think this is his only real consistency issue which is a good thing. Avocado - I can sometimes hide it in something, but he's not a fan...probably because it feels the same as peaches (or vice versa).

Favorite Toys:
Dylan likes most of his toys and he has a lot of them. Current faves are a bathtub toy that makes music. As well as two different bathtub toys that swim if you wind up or pull a string. He loves his electric piano. He's starting to loves two pull toys: a really cool alligator that makes lots of noise and another one. Water table... Dylan LOVES WATER!

Least Favorite Toys:
Walkers. He never has liked these. He's prefer to play with the stuff on the walker. When he does walk and push something, it's the big stroller.

I'd say Dylan is a happy kid about 90% of the time. We get lots of laughter. He actually laughs really loud sometimes when he wants attention because it works really well. He'll even laugh so the dog will play with him. Dylan is perfectly content playing by himself most of the time. We still do a lot with him, but it's not necessary. But his expressive language is lagging and so he's getting more and more frustrated as his opinions become stronger. We're getting lots of grunting/groaning to ask for things and when we don't respond right away (to try to prompt real language), he gets mad. He does get "tantrumy" when he's denied something he likes, like going out the doggie door, but we haven't had any on the floor sustained tantrums, it's more of a 1 minute cry and then he gets over it. Dylan still LOVES to read although he's much pickier about which books he wants to read. He's starting kind of asking us to read to him which is really cute, but he'll "read" by himself too.

Still good. D is on one nap. Occasionally, he'll play for up to an hour before falling asleep which is a new thing, but he still chills in his crib for that time.

Walking/Gross Motor - Well...not walking. Dylan is only 14.5 months adjusted, so we definitely do not need to worry yet, but he's not interested in walking. He has amazing balance...can climb onto chairs...yesterday
he climbed into his stroller when I turned away for a second. He can stand up and down without holding on to anything. But he doesn't want to walk and actively refuses when I try to practice with him (other people have more success). I really am not worried about this one because his gross motor seems to be so good overall.

Language - Like I said above, this one is going very slowly and it does worry me a bit. Although Dylan has fantastic eye contact and initiates social interaction, I still worry about Autism often. I used to work with kids with Autism and I read every study out there, including the ones that talk about how huge our risk factors are because Dylan's dad is old AND he was premature AND I had a lot of stress throughout the pregnancy. All = higher risk for autism. So I worry. But I don't think he does have it, I just worry about regression. Anyway. Dylan has his same few words, basically Daddy and Doggy which he says daily and then the randoms that I've heard like twice are Car, Turtle, and Outside. He makes no attempt to make animal noises or say Up or Bye-Bye. He seems to understand most of what I say, but won't respond to "where's your nose?" or "where's the cow?" type questions.

He will give kisses on cue, when he feels like it. We have nearly a 100% success rate with his giant Costco bear, about a 25% success rate for me...but it's ok, whenever I do get kisses they last me a long time : ). He will also give the dog the ball or bone when prompted which is helpful for keeping her things out of his mouth.

Fine Motor -  I think his fine motor is progressing well. We just started informally working on eating with utensils. I'll give him the spoon or fork, then load it, then guide it to his mouth. I'd saying it's going well! But mostly, he feeds himself by hand. He has a pincer grasp, but does not always use it. He's starting to understand how things twist, like caps. We made him a latch board that he occasionally likes to play with. He can turn book pages well and realizes that there are individual pages, so sometimes he'll try to split one board book page which I think shows pretty good understanding!

We have our next high-risk follow up with the hospital in a week, so I will get a professional to weigh in soon.

Dylan is a real pleasure to be around, a really sweet kid. He's serious in new or busy situations and loud and silly at home. I missed him so much while I was gone this week and I love being his mom!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Going on Vacation...Alone

And I might've been a sobbing, crying mess while walking Dylan around the block this evening. I even made him go in the carrier so I could be extra close to him.

It's weird...for me being away from him is getting harder and harder the older he gets. I didn't cry when I went back to work. But I still get to see him every afternoon... I didn't even get upset when I went out of town for a funeral last October. But that trip was rushed so I didn't have a lot of time to worry.

Now I know he will know I'm gone and it makes me horribly sad. But even worse is how much I will miss him. What new things will he start doing while I'm gone?

Also, I'm going to a super kid-friendly place...the Disney Resort in Hawaii...for a frend's wedding. And most others will be bringing their kids. :( There are lots of good reasons not to bring Dylan, 1) I'm in the wedding, therefor super busy, 2) it's still flu season and D shouldn't be flying 3) the trip is already pretty expensive.


I'm sure I'll have fun, but I'm thinking about bringing myself a lovey. Seriously. Maybe Dylan's Jelly at bear...

Oh- and planning for a trip with a toddler. No joke. I used to pack the night before...ha!