Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Happy Fathers Day

Daddy opening his Fathers Day gifts

Tom, Ryan and Grandpa Bill

Tom is an amazing father. He doesn't do everything the exact way I would but I'm learning that his love for his son is much more important than making sure his clothes match or his teeth are brushed.

When Ryan was 3 months old and I started back to work part time Tom started watching him 1 day a week. In march I had to go back full time and now Ryan goes to day care 2 days a week and Tom cares for him at home the other 3. The first few months of a baby's life is difficult for a father - they need there mom so much during this time. We are still adjusting to my working full time and if I think about it too long it will make me sad.
Tom and Ryan have such a cute relationship. I think they are still figuring eachother out but for the most part they have fun. Tom reads several books to Ryan a day and especially now while it's warm they get outside as much as possible. Posted by Picasa

9 Month Wellness Appointment

Our little man is growing up fast. Ryan had his 9 month wellness exam on the 19th. He was scheduled three weeks earlier however his ear infection and flu like symptoms took priority and we rescheduled closer to being 10 months old. He weighed in at 23 lbs, 10 oz and is 31 inches long. He is extremely healthy and advancing at warp speed. The Dr. was extremely impressed with this strength and abilities. One thing the Dr. said to me at our 4 month check up was not to push him physically at this point. He will grow and develop at his own pace and once he is crawling/walking our entire life changes. I've tried to embrace this way of thinking for the most part. I'm fine if he doesn't walk right away. We play lots of games and read a ton of books every day - his little brain is growing faster then ever and we want to give him the very best start we can.
Our love grows deeper for our sweet little man every day. At 4 months he broke his two front bottom teeth and at 8 months he broke his top front four - almost at the same exact time. Once those were in, two more on the bottom sprouted. So today Ryan has 8 teeth - 4 on top and 4 on the bottom. At 8 months Ryan was a rolling machine and could get most anywhere and before long he was doing the army crawl. I was amazed how fast he could go and for some reason it was straight for Bailey's food and water dish. I found myself running to catch him before he could get a piece of kibble in his mouth or dip his head in the water dish. Silly little man. As of three weeks ago he is crawling everywhere and now pulls himself up on everything. Tom had to lower the crib to the lowest setting because when he stood the rail of the crib came to his waist and this was essential to prevent him falling to the floor. It made me sad to lower the crib as this was another reminder that our sweet baby boy was growing up.
We are truly blessed to have such a wonderful son!
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Monday, June 8, 2009

Super Baby

So here it is, what you have all been waiting for - SUPER BABY! I know some people may find this to be difficult to watch but I promise R-man had a blast. Ryan shared several rides with his Dad throughout the day but this time he wanted to show off how brave he really is at 9 months old. We also have some footage of him swimming which I will post soon.

Happy Birthday Navy & Keegan

Matt, Keegan, Ryan & Tom

Ryan loved watching the kids shoot down the water slide.

Navy and Ryan enjoying a leisure swim.

This past weekend Ryan was invited to Kara's son Keegan and daughter Navy's birthday party. The party was initially scheduled for their backyard however the weather took a turn for the worse - big surprise for Wisconsin... Anyway they rescheduled for this awesome water park at a local hotel where all the kids had a great time. I am so glad we've taken Ryan to a few swim lessons and to open swim because he absolutely loves the water. Keegan is such a doll and Navy is truly one of the sweetest little girls we know. As you can see she was so good at holding Ryan for this photo. Later in the day after Navy opened a gift from a friend, she set her gift down and gave the little boy a huge hug and thanked him for the gift without even being asked. The funny thing was that she hugged the wrong boy and once they were notified of this mistake they both had the most confused look on their faces and didn't know what to do. Posted by Picasa

Snuggle Time

Everything was perfectly relaxing at first and suddenly Gracee decided to grab Ryan's head with both hands and go in for the bite. Needless to say they aren't ready for a sleep over - perhaps in a few months :)
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Friday Date Night

Deborah and Gracee came over Friday for the kids first official date night. Dinner, playtime, tub time and a quick meaningful snuggle. Gracee is such a sweet little angel and is all girl. Ryan on the other hand is a little bruit. We couldn't keep him from flipping on his belly and nearly knocking Gracee over throughout the entire bubble experience. They are so cute together and I have no doubt they will be good buddies as they grow up. Since the addition to both of our families Deborah and I haven't been able to get together as often which I really miss. Hopefully now that the weather is warming up we will be able to change that.
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Thursday, June 4, 2009

Crazy Party Of One!

My friend here at work sent me this picture today of me working at the Go Red Luncheon and it totally made me laugh. I share stories about things I do with Ryan so she thought I should included this shot in Ryan's scrapbook to remember his silly mom. If anything I feel like I'm old and boring and need new adventure in my life. It's hard when your husband likes everything to remain the same. If anyone has any ideas for lighting a fire under Tom to get him to embrace more change in our life I welcome your suggestions.

The girls here think I'm quirky but I feel completely normal...who doesn't slap a piece of spaghetti on their son's head at dinner to see if he can get it off and what mom doesn't send their son down the huge slide by himself at the park like a shooting bullet to see if he catches air on the bump...?
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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

All My Babies Are Gone Now

My awesome friend Kim sent me this story written by the Newsweek Columnist and Author Anna Quindlen,

Of course this brought tears to my eyes but at the same time was a huge wake up call. I wish I had read this 18 months ago when my Prego paranoia just started kicking in to gear. When you spend all your time reading books that make you terrified that you are doing everything wrong, exposing your kids to things to early or to late and watching for every little developmental milestone to make sure they are on track, it is so easy to forget to enjoy the moment.

Two weeks ago Ryan came home from Daycare running 103 temp. I know he wasn't feeling great since he was breaking four teeth on top and his third tooth on the bottom but the temp made it official. I got home, read my book and started him on Tylenol. Two days later and still running the same temp Ryan he was now throwing up so I decided to run in and see the Dr. Our normal physician wasn't working so we saw someone new and was sent home with medication to treat an ear infection. Later that night Ryan cried for nearly two hours straight and after trying everything humanly possible to help him without success I had a total break down. I felt completely helpless and like a totally failure. Tom was at work and I didn't know what to do so I hit speed dial and within two rings Lynne answered the phone. She was awesome and really helped me regain my composure. I know this sounds lame but I was now worrying about the swine flu. Lynne suggested I call Brian, which I did and it was the best suggestion ever. Brian was awesome - as a Doctor working in the ER he is exposed to everything so I was in good hands. Needless to say he had completely evaluated and explained every possible concern I had which was a tremendous help. Thanks Brian – you saved me from my wild imagination of Ryan having Swine Flu.

So anyway here is the story…

All my babies are gone now. I say this not in sorrow, but in disbelief. I take great satisfaction in what I have today: three almost-adults, two taller than I am, one closing in fast. Three people who read the same books I do and have learned not to be afraid of disagreeing with me in their opinion of them, who sometimes tell vulgar jokes that make me laugh until I choke and cry, who need razor blades and shower gel and privacy, who want to keep their doors closed more than I like. Who, miraculously, go to the bathroom, zip up their jackets and move food from plate to mouth all by themselves. Like the trick soap I bought for the bathroom with a rubber ducky at its center, the baby is buried deep within each, barely discernible except through the unreliable haze of the past. Everything in all the books I once pored over is finished for me now. Penelope Leach, T. Berry Brazelton, Dr. Spock. The ones on sibling rivalry and sleeping through the night and early-childhood education - all grown obsolete. Along with Goodnight Moon and Where the Wild Things Are, they are battered, spotted, well used. But I suspect that if you flipped the pages dust would rise like memories. What those books taught me, finally, and what the women on the playground taught me, and the well-meaning relations - what they taught me, was that they couldn't really teach me . Raising children is presented at first as a true-false test, then becomes multiple choice, until finally, far along, you realize that it is an endless essay. No one knows anything. One child responds well to positive reinforcement, another can be managed only with a stern voice and a timeout. One child is toilet trained at 3, his sibling at 2.

When my first child was born, parents were told to put baby to bed on his belly so that he would not choke on his own spit-up. By the time my last arrived, babies were put down on their backs because of research on sudden infant death syndrome. To a new parent this ever-shif ting certainty is terrifying, and then soothing. Eventually you must learn to trust yourself. Eventually the research will follow. I remember 15 years ago poring over one of Dr. Brazelton's wonderful books on child development, in which he describes three different sorts of infants: average, quiet, and active. I was looking for a sub-quiet codicil for an 18-month old who did not walk. Was there something wrong with his fat little legs? Was there something wrong with his tiny little mind? Was he developmentally delayed, physically challenged? Was I insane? Last year he went to China. Next year he goes to college. He can talk just fine. He can walk, too.

Every part of raising children is humbling. Believe me, mistakes were made. They have all been enshrined in the "Remember-When-Mom-Did" Hall of Fame. The outbursts, the temper tantrums, the bad language -mine, not theirs. The times the baby fell off the bed. The times I arrived late for preschool pickup. The nightmare sleepover. The horrible summer camp. The day when the youngest came barreling out of the classroom with a 98 on her geography test, and I responded, "What did you get wrong?" (She insisted I include that here.) The time I ordered food at the McDonald's drive-through speaker and then drove away with out picking it up from the window. (They all insisted I include that.) I did not allow them to watch the Simpsons for the first two seasons. What was I thinking? But the biggest mistake I made is the one that most of us make while doing this. I did not live in the moment enough. This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of the three of them, sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages 6, 4 and 1. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night.

I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less .Even today I'm not sure what worked and what didn't, what was me and what was simply life. When they were very small, I suppose I thought someday they would become who they were because of what I'd done. Now I suspect they simply grew into their true selves because they demanded in a thousand ways that I back off and let them be. The books said to be relaxed and I was often tense, matter-of-fact and I was sometimes over the top. And look how it all turned out. I wound up with the three people I like best in the world, who have done more than anyone to excavate my essential humanity. That's what the books never told me. I was bound and determined to learn from the experts. It just took me a while to figure out who the experts were.