Friday, October 30, 2009

Angel Andrew

We are so sad to share that baby Andrew Weston Hobbs passed away at 5:35 this past evening. He had faced more challenges and waged more battles than most in his almost one month of life. Please say a prayer for the Hobbs family tonight, as we cannot begin to imagine how devastated they must be.

I pray for the day when we no longer shed tears of sadness for babies' lives cut short by this monster. It is just so not fair.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Life is good...

Its been a busy couple of weeks enjoying the fall weather, getting ready for winter, and dealing with the hubbub of daily life! Charlie is moving around better and better everyday. He has fallen in love with Chloe and thankfully she is a good dog who puts up with him trying to crawl all over her and getting so excited that he just bangs her in the head over and over! He has also managed to get his fair share of fistfuls of fur from the cats. They have also been very well behaved and deal with Charlie very well. Some days they are braver than others, but we have not had any problems with them.

We went to see Dr Ratner for our third surgery follow-up since we have been home. We love him and are always glad to get his take on Charlie's progress. We started with a chest x-ray over at the hospital and thankfully they did not have to use the same torture device that they used last time. We had a different radiologist who doesn't necessarily like to use it and Charlie is able to sit up on his own. So Daddy just held his arms up and they were able to get the shots that they needed.

Dr Ratner said that everything looks great. His left lung has pretty much filled out the entire space and will continue to develop from here. His diaphragm also still looks secure. This was the first time that Dr Ratner actually spelled out any specifics about reherniation. He said that the real concern is for the first year (that is when they see most reherniations occur) and that they usually continue to monitor for up to the first five years just to ensure that there are no problems due to the size of his repair. He didn't seem to expect there to be any problems though. He is pleased with Charlie's growth and thinks we are doing great! We go back in January for another checkup and probably in April for another chest x-ray and checkup.

His reflux has been good (KNOCK ON WOOD) with no increases in his reglan at all and no increases in his zantac since July. There are some concerns for using the reglan for extended periods of time, so we are trying him off of it and seeing if he really needs it. To try and balance that out, they increased his zantac dose to 0.8mls 3x a day (though he usually only ends up getting it twice because he sleeps so well at night). We have been doing this for a few days now and so far, so good!

Charlie's feedings (KNOCK ON WOOD) have been really good again lately. He finishes his big bowl of cereal and fruits or veggies and cries for more! We still have some texture issues - he gags on anything chunky or somewhat solid - but they also seem to be getting a little better. Over the weekend he started eating the organic puffs (something like Cheerios for babies) fairly successfully. Before he would put it in his mouth, but start gagging as soon as it was on his tongue for more than a second or two. We can only give him one at a time or else he chases them all over his tray trying to get them all at once, but he does well with them!

The sippy cup is another story all together! We tried to start introducing it a couple weeks ago. We used a Nuk cup and it went ok. He did pick it up and try sucking on it, but was not hugely successful. We tried the hard plastic sippy cup we had and he just chewed on it - so much so that he actually left little teeth marks in it. The more we offered it to him, the shorter his tolerance for it. We tried a Nuby sippy cup the past couple of days with no success. It has gotten to the point where he throws an outright tantrum when we give him the sippy cup. So we will go Charlie's pace as usual and wait for him to be ready. A little patience goes a long way with our little man!

Hopefully you enjoy our pictures! We did a little fall photo shoot for ourselves last week. Charlie wasn't in a smiley mood, but I think they are nice regardless!

family photo at the apple orchard

Eman posing on the pumpkins with fritter crumbs all over his face :-)

One of our super nurses, Nancy, came over for a visit last week. She had gone to Disney with her family a while back and brought Charlie a souvenir! He was the only one who got a souvenir from her trip, so he is very lucky! And he of course looks super cute with his ears on! A true Mouseketeer!

Charlie picking out his first pumpkin!
He wanted all the dirty ones of course!

Friday, October 9, 2009

movin' and shakin'

If I have learned anything over the past 8 months of my life, I have learned that Charlie does things in his own time - as slowly or as quickly as he pleases! In the past week or so he has decided that he needs to move and he needs to move now! He is mastering crawling in quick little bursts, though he does have a hard time once he is off his play mat and on the hardwood floor - not quite as much traction there! And he has also become quite the pro at pulling himself up to the couch and shuffling back and forth a little while holding on. He is quite the daredevil and even lets go for a split second here and there. Chloe and the cats are no longer safe and he has managed to grab quite a few handfuls of fur the past few days. Luckily no one has retaliated!

He LOVES the Baby Einstein Numbers Nursery DVD. He can be throwing a complete fit, but will settle immediately as soon as we hit play! I feel a little bit guilty about it, but I keep telling myself it is educational - numbers, vocabulary, moral lessons... Who ever though it up is a genius! We have tried some of the other Baby Einsteins, but he wont watch them. He knows what he likes! There is a little girl who at one point holds up two orange halves and says, "Two oranges!" with a big smile on her face. Charlie is in love with her and giggles every time this part is on!

He is clapping and making all sorts of sounds. I have not caught on to him associating any of the sounds with things yet, but he might be close. He still loves bouncing in his bouncer seat. The bouncer is his favorite place to watch his Baby Einstein. He gets all excited while watching and bounces like crazy! Today he was trying to master clapping and bouncing at the same time, but he is not that coordinated! :-)

He has been struggling with his food the past couple weeks. He had been doing great with his cereal and every fruit or veggie we introduced. Then he started not taking his evening meal and we blamed it on him being too tired. But then he started giving us a hard time at every meal - crying with his lips locked tight. If we do manage to get something in his mouth when he is like this, he wont swallow it and will start gagging as it sits there on his tongue. His bottles are still going well, but the food has become a frustration. ((Knock on wood)) The past couple of days have been better, but not as good as it was. We have an arsenal of tricks for getting him to take the food - including turning on his DVD. He goes into such a happy place trance that he will usually open his mouth automatically without any coercion as he watches.

Charlie got his seasonal flu shot last week and will have the second one the first week in November. I think we are leaning towards getting him vaccinated for the H1N1 when it comes out as well. I don't think there is one right answer, we are just trying to figure out what is best for him. We are still waiting to hear if he has been approved for the RSV shots. We weren't going to start it until November anyways since it seems most people have only been approved for 5 shots. This way he will be covered through March which tends to be the hardest part of the RSV season. Hopefully we will get that lined up soon! I am being very hopeful and keeping my fingers crossed that he might even get approved to have it administered at home instead of having to go into the office for it every month! I am not holding my breath though! :-)

We have videos to post, but they are still on the camera, so they will have to be added later! Something to look forward to! You will just have to settle for pictures for now!

I finally manages to catch a picture of his two little treasures!
And that would be carrots all over his face.
When feedings don't go well, it usually means a bigger mess!

"Mom, I don't know why you think I am going to
bother Chester! Besides, he loves attention from me!"

Oh those blue eyes are going to break someone's heart someday!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Angel Vincent Serna

Please pray for the Serna family who lost their sweet baby Vincent to CDH yesterday. He was a warrior to the end.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Check with your Pharmacist!!

My sister-in-law just called - she is a pharmacist - and let me know that there has been a recall on Ranitidine (the generic form of Zantac - real Zantac is fine!). This is the medication that Charlie is on, so we will be getting a new bottle from a lot number that is not affected my the recall. They did not give her a reason for why is was being recalled, just that it was as a precaution, but call your pharmacist and make sure you are not affected by the recall or get new meds if you are! Thanks Sheri!! :-)