Saturday, April 29, 2006

Thanks to everyone who supported Team Kenyon in this year's March of Dimes WalkAmerica, remembering Will and celebrating Edward. Our Iowa City walk was this morning and we had 14 loyal walkers on our team, despite a persistent drizzle. Edward decided to stay at the park in his cozy stroller with Gram and PopPop who report that he slept through the whole thing while they pushed him around and around the picnic shelter. The rest of us navigated the puddles and completed the six mile route in a little more than two hours. (We're not convinced it is a full six miles, but we'll take credit for it anyway!)

Some sad news though. The University of Iowa student who leads the UI Collegiate Council March of Dimes group (the group that dedicated last year's walk to Will) lost a nephew this month due to complications of his premature birth in November, twelve weeks too soon. He was five months old. His twin sister is home and doing well. Our hearts go out to her whole family. We are so familiar with that emotional roller coaster and the joy and sorrow of loving a new baby while still longing for the lost one.

This is why we walk. This is why we are so grateful for those who walked with us, those who sponsored our walk, and those who support us each day.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Edward has really started to enjoy playing with the toys hanging from his playmat, so we thought we would add to what has become a series of playmat-related videos. Mary shot the first part earlier this week, and I shot the second part tonight. Enjoy.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Edward is four months old today. We couldn't manage a 4-month shot with a smile. Our camera takes a second or two between when you push the button and when the picture actually snaps, and that's long enough to go from smiling to vacant stare. We'll have to practice longer smiles!

He's able to hold his head pretty steady on his own these days and is learning to sit up. Obviously it will be a while yet before he can do that on his own, but all we've got is time. He also is going to town batting at the toys that hang down from his playmat. Sometimes it seems to me that he's swinging his arm hard enough to roll himself over, but not quite. He doesn't have much incentive for that since he hates being on his tummy. His usual reaction is to spit up within minutes of being placed face down. That is, unless he's sleeping. Then he's very comfy laying tummy-to-tummy with John--a new favorite weekend activity. I'm guessing this will be employed to on Saturday afternoon after the March of Dimes WalkAmerica. Thanks again to everyone who is planning to walk with us and/or has sponsored our walk. John and I have raised more than $600--fantastic!!

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Thanks to everyone who inquired about our well-being after Thursday's storm. It wasn't until Friday evening when we went downtown to get something to eat and to see some of the damage that we realized just how close the storm came to us. Mature trees had been ripped from the ground just four or five blocks away. That's a little close for comfort. We had no damage, not even any more branches off our trees than usual. As further evidence of how well that night went vs. what could have been, here was Ed's reaction after we came out of the basement:

We went to Des Moines for Easter and had the chance to see Ed's grandparents, great-grandparents and several other family members. He also had the chance to meet his new second cousin, Bailey, who shared some quality time with Ed on his blanket:

Ed got into the spirit of the holiday as well:

Happy Easter

Friday, April 14, 2006

Iowa City is in the news this morning after tornadoes ripped through last night. The Kenyons were unscathed, but others around here were not so lucky. The church with no roof that they're showing on national news is just a block from Edward's daycare. Though the daycare building was not damaged it is closed today in cooperation with the call to keep people away from downtown. The University of Iowa canceled classes for the first time in all the years I've been connected to it--almost 15 now!

Even though university classes were canceled, staff were supposed to report to work. However, with Edward's daycare closed and my office in the heart of the downtown destruction, I opted to stay home today, with the endorsement of my boss. It sounds like the best thing will be to stay out of the way and let the clean up crews do their work.

We were huddled in our basement for about an hour starting around 8:30 last night as the sirens blared and radio reports alerted us to possible funnel cloud sightings. The power went out before 9 p.m. and stayed out until about 4:30 this morning. Twice I thought I heard the "freight train" sound associated with tornadoes, but as if it were a few miles away. Turns out, it was only blocks from us. A sorority house was destroyed about eight blocks from here, trees were uprooted and roofs blown off. However, our neighborhood appears to have escaped damage. There's some insulation in our alley, and small branches down from trees. I imaging we'd see leaves down if it were a few weeks from now, but the trees are only just starting to bud.

Edward slept through the whole ordeal. We strapped him into his carseat when we went to the basement, figuring that would be a cozy and secure place for him. Once the lights went out I just rocked the seat a bit and soon enough he was snoring. I sort of wished I'd changed him before that happened, but as it turned out he mostly slept through a diaper change once the danger had passed and went right back to a sound sleep in his crib. That meant he missed his final meal of the evening though, so he was up around 5:30 this morning complaining of an empty stomach.

I've lived in the Midwest all my life and this is really the closest I've ever come to the path of a tornado. I'll be happy to wait another 32 years for my next encounter!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

It was face painting day at school today. And note the short sleeves--another 70-plus degree day in Iowa!

Monday, April 10, 2006

This is what Edward was supposed to wear for his first "school picture day" today. (Feel free to laugh...this seems to be the universal reaction to the notion of a school picture for a three-and-a-half month old!) Note that I say "supposed to wear." I considered not having him wear it when I learned the forecast called for 70 degrees and sunny today. A turtleneck and flannel overalls seemed a bit excessive. But it's such a cute outfit I couldn't resist and figured he could change when we got home at noon. He didn't even make it to 7:15 in this. John was holding him while I went to finish getting dressed for work. I never put my work clothes on until right before we're leaving, knowing Edward's propensity for liquid gifts, including this morning when he peed on me while I was changing him. But no problem...I was still wearing my t-shirt.

Anyway, while I was getting dressed, I heard "Bleh" followed immediately by "Woah!" The former, as you might guess, was Edward, and the latter, of course, was John. Edward had spit up on his own shoulder. No problem...he has two red shirts so we changed to the second one. Then I said, "Hey, we should probably take his picture at home in case he doesn't make it all the way to picture time in this outfit." Then we took this picture. Then I sat down to try to feed him one more time before leaving, since he'd decided 5 a.m. was a good time to wake up today. While we were getting settled, another "Bleh" spewed forth, this time landing on the sleeve of his shirt, the front of his overalls, my shirt sleeve and my pants leg.

So then we both had to change. So much for the 5 a.m. wake up call giving us plenty of time for a leisurely morning. Luckily, I had ironed four shirts yesterday having "rediscovered" them in my closet. Two were shirts I honestly had forgotten that I owned because they were new last year and I only got to wear them a few times before they were no longer size appropriate.

I think the spit up is because he's been falling asleep while eating and then I can't get him to burp afterward. I hesitate to wake him just to burp, but it may come to that. He's napping now after eating (and burping!) when we got home from school. When he wakes up, we're headed out with the stroller to enjoy that 70-degree sunshine. Welcome spring!!

Sunday, April 02, 2006

On Friday afternoon Edward was acting fussy, wiggling around, stretching his legs and arching his back. After trying all the usual calming methods, it finally occurred to me to change his clothes. Perhaps the outfit was just too tight. Eureka! The end of the 0-3 month era was upon us. He graduated to the 3-6 month size and was much more comfortable. Lucky for him, he has almost as many choices in this size as he did in the last, none of which were purchased by his parents. Truly, there was never a baby more lavished with gifts than Edward Kenyon!

I got a storage container for the outgrown clothes and ran across his penguin hat as I was putting things away. We thought we'd take one last picture of this piece of his early life just to show how far he's come.

Many people have been asking about how he's sleeping. I've hesitated to post anything about his overnight sleep patterns on the blog, because in the past this has been the surest way to ensure that he abandoned whatever pattern of behavior I was describing. He never seems to do it twice the same way, but for the most part I think it's safe to say that Edward is sleeping through the night. He can go six to eight hours at a stretch, so depending on what time he falls asleep for the night, I sometimes get away without a middle of the night feeding. For instance, if he gets changed and fed around 9 p.m. he will then sleep until sometime between 5 and 6 a.m. On a work day, this is a good time for me to get up and start the day. On a weekend, not so much, but we can adapt. However, if he falls asleep earlier than 9 p.m. then he sometimes wakes up hungry around 4 a.m. or so. When this happens I usually try to grab one last hour of sleep after feeding him and before the dreaded alarm clock. Sometimes I think it's not worth it, as it's so hard to get back up after that hour. But I know that every hour counts so I should take them where I can get them. And really, I'm in no position to complain given that I get seven- to eight-hour blocks of sleep somewhat regularly.