Sunday, February 28, 2010

Noah and Maya's Birthdays

January is a big month as we celebrate both of our perfect children's births. Noah turned 1 and Maya turned 9.

I can't believe it has already been a year since Noah was born.

He has been such a joy and a perfect baby. We decided on a jungle theme for his party. The decorations were fun as they were the same ones used for my surprise 30th birthday.

We invited our family and friends over for cake and ice cream and had a lot of fun celebrating his birthday.

I made my first cake from scratch as I needed to use Soy milk and an egg substitute so Noah could eat. We were all gathered; very tightly, in the kitchen to watch him enjoy this chocolate goodness.

Noah however ate it very slowly, quietly and timidly. As with all "table food", he likes to play with it and squish it through his fingers.

After cake and ice cream Noah was showered with love. He didn't really understand what was going on but his cousin Lexi (1 1/2 years) really enjoyed opening all of his gifts.

It was a great day and we look forward to all the adventures Noah brings us this next year.

Miss Maya surprised us all by breaking tradition- No Bounc'n Off the Walls!!! The whole family was heartbroken, except Maya.

She was thrilled to instead have a sleep over party and a new Wii from mom and Grandma. Maya was so cute as she could not have been more excited for her sleepover. The next day Maya spent with us.

We opened gifts, watched a movie, ate Dominoes pizza and enjoyed being together. We sure love Maya and think she is the greatest 9 year old we know.

You can find a few more pictures of Noah's party and Maya's party on SmugMug.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Allergies, Ear Infections, Eczema and Impetigo

Maya went in to the Allergist to check on her allergies. Consensus, Yep! she is still allergic - to everything!

This winter was a challenge for Noah but he is healthy and happy. He is generally a happy baby which is good or I think he would be a real handful with all of his ailments. We continue to struggle to find foods that he can (and will) eat. Gratefully he does pretty good with baby food fruits and veggies but he should be moving on to the much cheaper table foods. We are trying to alter our cooking and eating habits to include items that he can eat (although he usually just plays with it instead of eating it).

Jill was eating ice cream one night with Noah on her lap. He really wanted some and Jill thought a very small taste wouldn't hurt. His lips swelled up immediately! We knew he was allergic to dairy but hadn't realized how allergic. Jill still feels bad about that.

He was sick for his first birthday and he starting getting a rash on his face which we figured was his eczema. At his one-year check-up the doctor said it looks like impetigo and he also had a mild ear infection in both ears. We started a regime of antibiotics and new ointments for the skin (one for the face and another for the rest of his body). It really cleared up within a few days but as soon as the antibiotics ended it all came back and he was so fussy that we took him into an InstaCare.

He now had a full blown ear infection in one ear and the impetigo did not go away. This doctor gave us a stronger antibiotic but after four days there was no improvement of his skin, he was itchy all the time, had very loose stool, and developed a very bad diaper rash. It looks like he may be allergic to penicillin based antibiotics.

We took him back to his doctor to check on his ears and discuss our concerns with this skin. Luckily the ears were looking better and we obtained a referral to a dermatologist. The dermatologist looked at him for about 20 seconds and told the nurse, write up the prescriptions this boy has severe eczema. He gave Jill a brief education on Noah's imbalanced immune system. This imbalance is non-treatable and genetic and the symptoms include eczema, food allergies, seasonal allergies and asthma. We learned that the eczema gets worse whenever he gets sick. That makes sense to us now. The doctor also gave us lots of advice on using moisturizing creams, 100% cotton clothes, steroid creams and lots of love.

The creams seem to really be doing the trick. He only seems to go one or two days before the eczema flares up again. But at least we have a day or two of clear skin.

Round two of the accidental dairy allergy test occurred when Corey mistakenly grabbed the regular yogurt instead of the soy-based yogurt. The projectile vomit, extreme itching, and hives was not nice. Zyrtec to the rescue! It was my turn to feel like a bad parent!

Follow-up visit with the dermatologist resulted in more steroid creams and a new cream for his extremely raw buttocks. His diaper rash looks very painful and he let's us know that in fact it is very painful every time we try to wipe his bum. No fun!

We are very hopefully that we are finding some solutions to his ailments and are so grateful he is generally a happy baby.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Kneelands Come to SLC

Chris, Holly and the boys came to visit the week after Christmas.
(I know that was several months ago! Deal with it!)

A big Thank You to Holly's parents for moving back to Utah that gives the Kneeland Klan an excuse to come visit. It was a short but very fun and rewarding time. It always makes me wish we lived closer. Chris hasn't changed as he spent the day skiing and then when he met up with us told us story after story of his adventures; broken ribs, walking miles in the snow, losing and finding his cell phone and hanging out with celebrities all included. Holly is the same adorable socialite as she left us to go spend the evening with her girlfriends. The boys are growing up way to fast and have more energy than one can even imagine.

Maya had fun giving them a tour of our new home. The tour included showing off the fun laundry shoot. Which was then turned into a human slide as Jake decided to slide down head first! Luckily he was OK.

Aunt Judy and her exchange student (I am so sorry to admit I cant remember her name) joined us for the evening which just added to the joy. We piled into the cars and went out to eat at The Old Spaghetti Factory. Cousin Rick and his cute family (wife Lisa and kids Rian, Carter and Berlin) joined us. We had a great time at dinner catching up and eating good food.

After dinner we walked over to see the temple lights. As it was Jan. 2 we wondered if they would still be on, so we looked online and were excited to see that it would be the last night. We were highly disappointed to find no lights were on once we walked over there. The boys had never seen the temple so we still took the time to walk around.

We then headed home and enjoyed talking and playing. The kids took over the downstairs and all slept together on the couches and on a big air mattress. Chris and Holly were the second guests to ever enjoy our guest room, Judy slept in Maya's room and her exchange student slept on the futon in our storage room. Needless to say the house was bursting at the seems and I loved it. I love having our home and this is one of the reasons. I love having it filled with the people I love most.

The next morning we made a delicious big breakfast and continued to play. I had to say goodbye early as I needed to work. Maya loved being with her cousins and I loved seeing them play together.

We miss you guys and loved spending some time together. We cant wait for you to come back.

Monday, February 15, 2010

New Snowshoes

Santa brought new snowshoes, coat and snow pants for Jill this year.

The day after Christmas, we drove up to The Spruces campground in Big Cottonwood Canyon to try them out.

We had to improvise some gloves for Noah since we forgot them at home. I put my huge gauntlet style mittens over his whole arms.

It was snowing and cold so we did not last very long, but Jill had a lot of fun making tracks in the snow.

A couple of weeks later, we returned to The Spruces for some more fun.

This time Maya was with us, Noah was better prepared, and I remembered my camera.

You can find the rest of the snowshoeing pictures here.