Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A Cheerleader in the Making

I was never a cheerleader. However, I spent five of my six years teaching as a cheerleading coach. I enjoyed every minute of it. I had awesome, hardworking girls on my team, and we won two state championships.

Busybody Blair does the funniest things with her arms and legs. Sometimes I snap a picture and wonder if she is practicing her cheer motions! She has this thing about raising her left arm up by her head. She does both, but Brad teases that he thinks she might be left handed like me. I think she has more practice with that one, because I usually hold her with her left arm out and right arm against me, so I'm going to try to switch her up some!

She practices her jumps...




her motions...




a darn good punch motion!


and her best smile, of course!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Blair Update

I wanted to give an update on Blair's progress. She is doing well, praise the Lord! She loves to be talked to, loves her mobile, smiles at her mommy at 5am, snoozes in the car, smacks her pacifier when she sleeps, and really enjoys a bath! There are days that she takes great naps and days she keeps mommy tied up all day. She's so cute that she makes me laugh out loud sometimes.


Here's my foot!


Is this not the most pitiful "I didn't want to get out of the tub" face?

We worked hard to stay on a 3 hour schedule, but since the doctor started adding calories to the breastmilk using preemie formula and she got thrush, she wouldn't take more than 2 to 3 ounces at a time (she was taking 4), which made going 3 hours difficult. Last week I started feeding her anytime she'd take it. My heart told me that she wasn't eating a lot, because she didn't like the formula, but I trusted the doc and gave it a good go (4 weeks) -- until this week. I decided to try a few days without formula in the milk, and she has eaten really well. The combination of changes must have worked. After no gain last week, she gained 8 ounces this week and now weighs 8 pounds 12 ounces. Still tiny but growing out of those newborn clothes!

She is still on oxygen at fluctuating levels. It usually stays between 1/6 and 1/4 liter. This is about the same amount she has been on since she came home, but her blood oxygen saturation stays in the 90s much better now without dipping into the 80s. Her doctor said that growth is the only cure for her lungs, and growth will bring about decreased oxygen requirement. And Blair is growing!

We found out yesterday that Blair has some hearing loss. It seems to be about 30% - 40% loss in both ears, due to problems with the nerve and not the outer ear. The ENT did not know why and said he may not ever know. Her pediatrician said that one of the antibiotics she took the first two weeks of her life could have an effect on hearing, but it's not for certain that's what caused her hearing loss. I will talk to the ENT about it next time we see him. I don't dare look anything up on the internet. Only once did I attempt that, and I learned quickly that it's much less scary to talk to the doctor! The ENT said that he has seen NICU babies' hearing improve. He does not expect Blair's hearing to worsen, but he said that it's possible it can improve. She will have another test in April. Then, we will decide what to do depending on the test results. The most likely scenerio will be hearing aids to try to avoid speech issues and continued monitoring of her hearing to see if it improves.
We are thankful that she can hear and is "talking" to us and her mobile! We will keep praying for God's healing for Blair -- we have seen Him answer many prayers already!

We continue to be thankful for prayers for our baby girl. She is such a joy to have at home, and we look forward to everyone's meeting her at some point in the future!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

It's Scary Out There

Today, Brad and I took Blair, at 14 weeks old, to a non-doctor's office public place for the first time! The doctors didn't tell us not to take her anywhere; they just said don't take her around a bunch of people, but it's really not worth the risk when we can wait the winter out at home. I like to go places, but I'm not going crazy at home. Doctor's visits once a week provide opportunities to get out and to spend the day at my mom and dad's. Public places are scary to me right now anyway with all of the sicknesses going around, and getting Blair's stuff together to go somewhere is enough to make me content to stay home!

Since we got home, I haven't eaten out anywhere other than the Chick-fil-a drive through on the way home from the doctor.
Well, I guess we don't eat out much anyway -- all we have is a Subway, so there's nowhere to go! But everyone I know likes a little Mexican food every now and then, so occasionally Brad and I make the 20 minute drive to our our semi-local Mexican restaurant. We decided to go there for a 3pm lunch, hoping it wouldn't be too busy. There weren't many people there at all, and we sat in a room by ourselves! Of all times, Blair had a rare tummy ache when we got there, but a few minutes of bouncing her on her tummy in my lap and she was asleep. We had a great meal and a good time. Maybe Brad and I will get to go out again before another six weeks is up. Maybe for our anniversary next week? We'll see.


Edited to add: OH. MY. GOODNESS. We are getting a Mexican restaurant! I can't believe it. I had already written this post when I passed by the sign: Mexican Restaurant Coming Soon! How fantastic! I'm so excited. It's walking distance from my house -- well, actually everything in this town in walking distance from my house! I sure hope it's yummy!

Elephants, Zebras, Giraffes, Oh My!

Blair has been making a few noises for a while now, but it seems that she has really found her voice in the past week or so. Whenever I take out the video camera and talk to her, she has nothing to say, but she'll surely talk to her mobile!

video

Friday, January 9, 2009

Three and Counting...Fast!

Dear Blair,
Everyone has told me that time slips away quickly and children grow up way too fast, and all that is so true. You are still a baby, so you're not really "grown up," but I can't believe that you are three months old today! You are getting bigger little by little. You are now 8 lbs 4 oz, and we are trying to feed you lots so that your little lungs can grow, grow!

You absolutely love to take a bath and now scream from the moment I take you out until I have you completely dressed. It makes dressing you a bit more difficult! You still sleep in our room at night, because we still have an oxygen monitor, but you nap in your bed during the day. In the last two weeks, the mobile has become a new favorite. You watch it until it turns off, and I have to turn it back on. You can hold your head up pretty good on my shoulder or if I sit you up in my lap. We're still working on holding it up on your tummy. I don't like for you be on your tummy and do face plants into the blanket with a nasal cannula in your nose!

We have so much fun together. One of my favorite parts of the day is when you are awake for a while before lunch. We talk and play and read and sing. You are still doing a lot of mouth moving without sound, but you manage "ooh" or an "ah" too! We've started to call you moody; you can go from fussing one second to smiling the next. If you're in a good mood, you smile the minute someone talks to you. Sometimes, your smile spreads all over your face, and you lean your head back. It's so cute!

I love every minute we spend together, and even though I'm with you, it's like I miss you when we have to spend the day at the doctor, because we don't get to play as much!

Your mommy and daddy are so thankful that God gave you to us. We look forward to many more milestones and birthdays!

Love,
mommy


You'll be too big for this pillow before we know it!


But you're still so little!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Outside



Since it hasn't been very cold in the past week or so, Blair and I have begun to go for walks in the afternoon. I enjoy the exercise; I think Blair likes the ride; and I know Gus loves going, because he gets excited when I put on my tennis shoes! Blair usually falls asleep within five minutes of leaving the house!