Monday, July 31, 2006

Apparently a clarification is in order. My mom admitted to me last night that Edward actually ate his first Cheerios while she was watching him earlier this month. I don't know why she thought it had to be a secret, but I'm sure he'll have more "don't tell mom" moments with his grandparents (both sets) in the years ahead!

Anyway, unless my mom also gave him meat on that babysitting gig, tonight Edward officially left vegetarianism in the dust (sorry Bridget!) He ate a baby food combo of sweet potatoes and chicken. John thought this sounded terribly suspect so he decided to taste a bite first to be sure it was OK. I know, I couldn't believe it either! But I guess it wasn't too bad because he started feeding it to Edward, who ate the whole 4 oz. jar.

Today's mail brought yet another request from our insurance company to complete a survey regarding one of Edward's recent doctor visits. I think they're sending one after every appointment. Or maybe it's just May and June since residents are finishing their years and need evaluation. Regardless, it takes too much time so I've ignored them. Today I decided to give it to Edward so he could provide his own feedback. Needless to say, we will not be returning this by mail.

And here's one more for the adoring masses (i.e. Aunt Nora). Clearly he's tired of being cooped up in the house with his parents as we slog our way through Heatwave 2006. I was outside for a grand total of one hour this weekend--from 7:30 to 8:30 Sunday morning tying up the bountiful tomato vines in my garden. Ed only stayed out 'til 8, sitting in his stroller playing with toys, but then John took him back to the cool comfort of our air conditioned house. Another scorcher tomorrow, but then Wednesday is supposed to bring rain and relief!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Edward ate his first two Cheerios today. I was having them for breakfast and he needed entertainment while I ate so I put three on his tray. He didn't quite know what to make of them so I picked one up and put it close to his mouth. He took it from me and put it in his mouth where he proceeded to "gum" it for about three minutes. A friend of mine noted that we'd all be skinny if we ate that way! He made some funny faces while rolling it around in his mouth, but eventually it must have gotten soggy enough to go down and he took a second one. We were on our way to work and daycare, so not much time for further experimentation. We'll see how he progresses in this area. Some teeth would help, but so far, nothing to show.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

It's a good thing there's no such thing as Edward photo overkill, because, after a record-setting five-picture post last night, here comes one more photo. This is Edward's seven-month picture, taken this morning before he headed off to daycare. It's amazing how big he's getting, even compared with his six-month and five-month photos. He's sitting up like a champ -- there's no need for one of us to be just out of frame to catch him as he slides down the couch cushions anymore -- and it's a lot easier these days to catch a smile, too.

Monday, July 24, 2006

We've been trying to stay cool here at the Kenyon household these past couple of weeks, as the heat, humidity and dew point all conspired to make things seem quite tropical. We passed the time in a number of different ways. Edward, with a lot of help from Mom, reads Moo, Baa, La La La.

Here Edward keeps cool with some water from his new sippy cup. He hasn't quite mastered this -- he doesn't know to tip it up so the water actually comes out, but the spout has proven to be a tasty new chewable toy. Once he figures this out, it will probably be more fun for him and messy for us. The doctor suggested taking the no-spill valve out until he gets the hang of it, which means it's free-flowing when upside down. Because the bottom has proven as appealing to chew as the top, this will mean frequent spills. It's only water for now, so we'll just have a soggy Edward.

As mentioned last week, Ed has a new "breathable bumper" on his crib. He's found ways to make that fun, too. I laid him down for a second on Saturday while taking out a dirty diaper. In the moment I was away, he rolled from his back to his front, and found himself lodged up against the side of the crib. I came back into the room and called his name. His head popped up to reveal a pair of eyes over the top of the pad. I pulled it down to reveal him giggling. He was more than happy to reprise this for the camera a moment later.

For recreation he took a piggyback ride around the house with me (note his ingenioius use of hair as a handle) and, once the heat broke over the weekend, went swinging in our neighborhood park (after donning his soon-to-be too small hat and a good dose of sunscreen) with Mary. All told, it was a good full week.

The only real news to report is that we got our car back last weekend after it suffered another minor relapse while we drove back from Davenport weekend before last. They had installed a "black box" which recorded the problem, and we hope the fix will do the trick. We'd kind of like to get back to the "worry-free" part of having a new car.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Ed has started to roll around a lot in his crib, so he's not always sleeping on his back. This is him napping today. This particular nap ended when he wound up on his stomach pressed up against the side of the crib and couldn't manage to roll himself back. We added the white "breathable bumper" after he woke himself up that way several times over the weekend. I guess it would be a rude awakening to roll over and suddenly have your face pressed against a wood rail. Without the bumper he also was getting his arms and legs "caught" in the slats. They weren't really stuck, but he couldn't figure that out on his own.

We never had bumper pads because of the cautions of the risk for SIDS. This is a very thin layer that is easy to breathe through. When I looked online to see if I could find a product like this, I found many parent comments like: "I bought this after I heard by baby cry in the night and found her with her head pressed into the corner of the bumper pad." Glad we never bothered with what is essentially a decorative item. We didn't spend a moment of the pregnancy considering "nursery decor" so it just never came up. After Ed arrived, we ordered a crib, mattress, and sheets and that seemed enough.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

The new thing around the Kenyon household is sitting up on our own. While Mary and I usually have no trouble with the task, Edward's skills in that arena are a work in progress. He seems to get better with each passing day, able to spend more time upright than tilting or falling. As you can tell from this photo, he doesn't think this is any big deal. He was sitting up for several seconds at a time tonight, though as the video below will show, there is little warning when he's had enough and is ready to go down.

He is still very enamored of his toes, grabbing them any chance he gets. When he's sitting up, that can lead to a falling forward that leaves him curled up in a ball with his face meeting his feet. He doesn't seem to mind the pose, though it doesn't look very comfortable. Here he's in a better position for optimal toe-grabbing. That's an instantaneous reaction when we put him on his changing table. Once his back hits the pad, his legs fly up into the air and he grabs on. That helps when powdering him, but it's not the easiest pose when one is trying to actually put the diaper on him.

We can tell that Edward is getting bigger, because it is becoming increasingly difficult to get some of his onesies over his head when putting them on or taking them off. Lucky for us, he's pretty tolerant of the process.

For video evidence of his ever-growing sitting skills, click below.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Edward sailed through his six-month check-up this afternoon. He weighs almost 18 pounds (45th percentile) and is 26 1/4 inches long (35th percentile.) He is doing all the things his doctor expects of a boy his age--smiling, laughing, rolling over, grabbing, moving objects from one hand to the other (with a stop in the middle for the mouth of course!) He's eating and sleeping well (except for our recent run of 2 a.m. wake-ups.) No new instructions, really, other than to watch him grow and be ready to childproof the house when he becomes mobile. He screamed when he got his shots (but who wouldn't?) but he calmed down pretty quickly.

Probably the most interesting tidbit is that he does have an ear infection after all. Same ear as before--left side. Our doctor said it's not uncommon that it would look fine on Monday and be infected now. Virus leads to fluid in ears leads to infection and just one day can make a difference. That explains last night's screaming fits, I guess, but I wish we'd been able to start recovery on Monday rather than waiting until today. Let's hope this is the answer--John and I really need some sleep! The hand, foot and mouth disease isn't getting any worse--that is, no more visible spots on his hands and feet, none in his mouth, and the original spots are starting to blister over. So I guess we can check that one off on the list of childhood illnesses. I'm sure many more await.

The car did not have such an easy diagnosis. In fact after running it through a battery of tests that took a full page to enumerate, the Mazda folks report that there is nothing wrong with it. They have no explanation for Saturday's break-down, except possibly that we got some bad gas. On the one hand it's nice to know that our brand-new car is fine, but on the other hand, we're a little gunshy about getting back on the open road with nothing "fixed." John drove it around this afternoon and couldn't replicate the problem. Let's just hope it was a fluke. For future reference though, don't buy gas at the Citgo on Ingersoll in Des Moines!

This week also marked Edward's first professional portraits--preserving the memories of his six-month self for the ages. We joined the "smile saver" club (or some similar goofy name) at Sears, which has a few ongoing benefits (like no sitting fee for two years) and also some that change from month to month. This month's promotion allowed you to buy a CD with all the images plus copyright ownership for a fraction of the normal price. So we did that, which allows us to post a few favorites here.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Edward does not have an ear infection, but does have a virus called Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease. Clicking on the link will bring you to a CDC information sheet about the disease. It's apparently very common in babies and young children, especially in the summer months. So far he only has a few spots on his hands and feet and nothing in his mouth. It's not serious unless he gets sores in his mouth that make him not want to eat. That plus the diarrhea associated with the virus (which he's had this weekend, but we didn't connect to the other symptoms) can lead to dehydration. So we'll just have to be sure he has plenty of wet diapers and lots of his usual slobbering. He has his six-month check-up on Wednesday afternoon so they'll be able to follow up then to be sure he's on the road to recovery.

They didn't say why this would interrupt sleep, so the pattern of the last few nights where he's waking up and rejecting being put back in his crib after eating may be unrelated. We'll see. We had him sleep in his carseat last night and he did pretty well, sleeping from about 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. After I fed him he was wide awake and playing with his feet. This was not so cute at 2 a.m. We brought him to bed with us (which is very unusual for us--we're not subscribers to the "family bed" theory) and he eventually fell asleep until about 5:30 a.m. Needless to say, his parents are longing for his old habit of sleeping through from 7:30 p.m. to 6 a.m.!

Sunday, July 02, 2006

A few weeks back some friends who live across the street told us they had a baby "exer-saucer" in their attic that they'd be happy to pass on to us since their kids have long since grown out of it. Edward has used one at daycare a couple of times and he's been working hard to stand up when we're holding him so we thought that might be a nice step up from his playmat for entertainment. Plus, we think he might be getting another ear infection (or the last one didn't fully go away) because he's been fussy at night--waking up whenever we try to lay him down. The doctor said that when babies have ear infections the pressure is greater when they're laying down so that would be consistent with his pattern the last couple of days. What better time for some upright entertainment? Looks like a good decision so far!

We'll have to call the doctor in the morning and go in for an ear check. I hope we can get this knocked down. I really hate seeing him in pain and I've heard horror stories about the endless ear infection--ugh!

Other than that, we had a nice visit with the extended Kenyon family yesterday in Des Moines at John's cousin's 40th birthday party. It was great to see everyone and for them to be able to meet Edward in person after following his news and photos on this blog. We had some car trouble on the way home--in our NEW car no less. Just when I was thinking it was so nice not to have to worry about breakdowns since we made the decision to upgrade to a station wagon. We think it might be a fuel injection problem, but of course our combined knowledge of the inner workings of the automobile would be a lot shorter than our average blog post so we really don't know what's wrong with it. We managed to limp home though and we'll take it in tomorrow for a diagnosis. Ed and the car then can mend together.