Monday, May 21, 2012

6 months...ish...and Kidneys

Lots of pics and video's in this one... I say that all the time.  This time I mean it.  :)

Well, Emilyn is 6 1/2 months now.  That is just CRAZY!  I feel like I was just waddling around praying for her to finally come, and now she is already half a year old.  People always say time flies and you think, yah yah...but it's true.  Time truly does fly.  

At 6 1/2 months, Emilyn is SO MUCH FUN!  I mean, don't get me wrong, this whole experience has been amazing, but her personality is really starting to come out and she is SO MUCH FUN!  She is c.r.a.z.y., has so much energy, loooooves to talk and smiles at everyone.  Seriously.  Everyone.  People always comment on how she is such a happy baby and how curious she is.  She watches everyone, follows people and things around the room, and stares at you like she's playing the staring game determined to win.

Recently we've started swinging with her.  She's now graduated to the baby swing on her own, but from the first "lap swing" she's loved it.  She smiles, kicks her legs, giggles and would stay in the swing for an hour if we let her.  Below are one of J.D.'s favorite pics with him and her, her swinging in the baby swing with the BEST look of joy on her face (probably my favorite picture of her to date) and her talking and giggling while swinging.  

On her six month birthday I decided to have a "photo shoot" and this pic below is the gem from that morning.  

I also wanted to post a video of her interacting with one of her toys because she's so active.  This video is actually a pretty mellow version of her play times.  

These videos of her giggling and in her bouncer are more like her typical energy...and boy does she have a lot of it!  

She L.O.V.E.S being in a bouncer...I think that's pretty obvious!  :)

At Emilyn's six month check up she was a happy little camper and everything checked out great!  She is now 16 1/2 pounds and, I think, 26 1/2 inches.  (Maybe 27)  This puts her in the 52nd percent for weight and 75th for height.  She is eating oatmeal on a regular basis and our Dr. wanted us to start introducing other solids as well.  So far, she's had sweet potatoes, squash and carrots.  Tomorrow we start pears.  I have to say, I feel like the luckiest mom in the world because she is so so so easy.  No fits, no tears, no screams.  She's eaten everything with complete ease, opens up for the spoon with no problem and loves everything she's tried.  Below are pictures of the first time she sat in her high chair and the day we went to the Dr.  

Emilyn also has learned how to sit up and hold herself up standing.  (She can't pull herself up to stand.  I prop her up and she holds on.)  Below is a pic of her standing in her crib, looking oh so cute on Mother's Day and sitting up on her own.  

Speaking of Mother's Day (my first ever!) we had a lot of fun at church in the morning, eating at my favorite breakfast spot in Portland (The Jam) and spending the afternoon lounging in our backyard drinking iced coffee and eating an amazing cake from Beaverton Bakery.  It was a nice, relaxing day.  

The final thing I wanted to talk about in this post is Emilyn's kidneys.  We had another ultrasound today to check out her Kidney Reflux.  We think everything looks ok, but there is one possible problem that we will find out more about in six months.  One of Emi's kidneys has shrunk since her first ultrasound in December.  This is most likely not a problem because when the first scan was done she had an infection which causes the kidneys to swell.  It can take three months for the kidneys to go back to normal size, so it's probable that her kidney was swollen, and during this scan it was normal.  If, however, in November, we find that her kidney hasn't grown it will mean immediate surgery because the two infections she had have permanently damaged it.  Our Urologist is one of THE best in the northwest and has awards posted all over his office for being so.  We feel confident about his prognosis, and are not worried at all.  We are pretty convinced, as is he, that she is healthy and growing normally and had a very swollen kidney in December.  

Below are two pics from today, during her ultrasound.  She was, of course, a perfect angel and let the tech do her thing without any tears or screams.  

We feel so so SO blessed to have Emilyn in our lives and are enjoying every minute of being parents.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Turning 30

Well, I am now officially in the 30 club. You might be thinking that I think this is depressing. On the contrary...I am one of those strange folks who love getting older, and have been excited to hit 30 for a long time! I think my 30's are truly going to be the best years of my life... We are starting our family, we are more settled in our careers, I am more confident in my own skin, the list goes on and on. Basically I'm stoked about turning 30, and am thinking...bring it on life! (How corny do I sound?) :)
We spread out the celebrations over a few days. On my actual birthday (the 11th) we spent the whole day eating great food and doing things I love. We went to breakfast at one of my favorite spots, La Provence, which is an amazing French restaurant....and while there they gave me a free pastry to celebrate, and my favorite part of the morning...the waitress told us that all the wait staff were in the back talking about how cute Emilyn is! Every mom loves to hear that! After breakfast we went to church, then out to lunch with two of the pastoral staff at church. We followed up lunch by going out to a movie and coffee, and then ate some of the best birthday cake I've ever had! It was poppy seed cake, with banana custard filling, iced with ganache. You might not understand how delicious this cake was...but trust me when I say, it was like heaven in cake form!
We also had a little birthday party last weekend, on the 17th, which was themed, "grandparents." It was super fun. We dressed up, played bingo, ate lots of yummy food and had delicious sangria...among other things. Here are some pics of the birthday celebrations. Enjoy!
This is our little family dressed up!
This is Emilyn as a granny! I call them: Grumpy Granny.....
And, Curious Granny.
This is me blowing out my home-made raspberry cake, made by the lovely Julie.
This is my friend Erin, who would've won "best dressed!"
These are some pretty amazing children!
This is the necklace my mother-in-law bought for me, that I've been wanting so bad!!!

The Norm...

Times like these are becoming the norm for us. Emilyn is one happy little camper, and falls asleep babbling and smiling. She plays babbling and smiling. She wakes up babbling and smiling. She's just a pleasant little baby, and we are so very lucky!

This is Emilyn falling asleep...? She is so cute like this, and then eventually falls silent and asleep.

Emilyn playing. She's so funny! I say that, and can my baby be funny...but oh man, she cracks me up!

Friday, March 9, 2012

At 4 Months...

Warning: This blog is full of pics and videos!

Emilyn is now 4 months old...can you believe it?!! I know I certainly can't. It seems like only a month ago I could barely make the walk to our local coffee shop, only to have J.D. walk home and drive to pick me up because my stomach was so HUGE. Now, we make that walk all the time (almost 2 miles), and last weekend we did a five mile walk.

At four months Emilyn has really started coming to "life." That sounds silly, because of course she's alive, but she is now babbling up a storm, rolling over, playing with more toys, trying to eat everything, teething, and so much more! I'm fairly certain she's going to be quite a talker...and a bit of a spitfire like her mama was...and her daddy (on the talking front).

Emi is the sweetest little baby. She has been sleeping through the night since seven weeks, and continues to be a rockstar in that area. Now, we are either awoken by babbling or big smiles. Waking up in the morning to her little noises is one of the best gifts. She also smiles at practically everyone. If you catch her eyes and she focuses on your face, she's bound to give you a huge grin. Emi loves to bounce and sing, and the Maroon 5/Gym Class Heroes song, "Stereo Hearts," has become our song! (JUST the chorus) It's quite humorous...I had the song stuck in my head and was singing it one day, and she started smiling. After really thinking about the words in the chorus, I decided it was a really sweet little "lullaby" and now, when she's crying, if I start singing the chorus she calms down pretty quick! (If you don't know the song, google the lyrics...and look at the chorus.)

We also had her four month check-up. She is now 14.1 lbs and 24.4 inches which puts her in the 60% for weight and 55% for height. (And her head is 43%) :) She's our perfectly average little love bug! Her kidney reflux is well under control with her daily antibiotic, but is causing some serious skin issues, so we now have some prescriptions for yeast and eczema that we have to use. She has very sensitive skin, and with the antibiotic cutting back some of her bad and good bacteria it makes her more susceptible for these things. BUT, because of her super sensitive, pale skin, her little cheeks are so adorable and rosy! She always seems to be perfectly flushed. Her eyes are getting bluer and bluer, so they are a total combination of J.D. and me. His shape, my color.

I hope you enjoy all the videos and pictures! We LOVE being parents, and feel so so so blessed by our little nugget! Some of them have no sound due to some technical errors, but they are still cute!

Mommy throwing Emi. Watch her huge smiles!

Emilyn rolling over like a champ!

Emi babbling and eating her fingers.

Mommy and Emi swinging away!

Emi holding her bottle!

Monday, February 13, 2012

3 Months...

Well, Emilyn in now 3 months, and a lot has happened in this last month of her life! Emilyn experienced her first snow fall....

Emilyn had her first beach trip and wore sunglasses for the first time...

We brought Emi up to the mountain for the first time...

She also started discovering toys for the first time...

The final, and slightly scary, thing that happened is we found out more about Emilyn's Urinary Tract Infections...which were actually kidney infections. After having two UTI's in her short little life, Emilyn had to have a VCUG test (have no idea what that stands for...) to determine if she has Kidney Reflux. (The generic term for what the real name is)

Here is how I understand and explain Kidney Reflux in my simple terms: Basically our bodies have tubes that go from the kidneys to the bladder. There is supposed to be a one-way door on these tubes to allow the urine into the bladder, which then gets peed out. With Kidney Reflux, these tubes have a two-way, swinging door which allows urine to go back up into the kidneys. There are 5 grades of this problem, with 5 being the worst possible reflux. This problem can cause continual infections and permanent kidney damage...or failure. ...Now back to Emi.

Last Thursday Emilyn had her test, and her results came back as grade 3 and 4. Because they were such high grades, we had to see a urologist which we did today. Dr. Lashley is supposed to be one of the best in the Northwest from my understanding, and we feel very lucky that we are able to have him work with us. After our appointment today, Emilyn is on a permanent, low-dose, antibiotic to prevent infections from happening. She will have another ultra-sound in May (the first one was in the hospital over Christmas) to determine how her kidneys are growing and what, if any, damage has already been done. If there is too much damage (not too likely) Emilyn will need surgery soon. Otherwise we wait to see if the antibiotics and her growing a bit will make this problem go away. Dr. Lashley told us that she has an 80% chance of needing surgery at some point between the ages of one and four because her reflux is such a high grade. However, things could be worse, and she could definitely need surgery now. Thankfully that is not the case.

Emi is mommy and daddy's little trooper. Regardless of her medicine and the testing, she is happy as ever! During the VCUG test she laid there smiling at the doctors and nurses...even after they inserted her catheter. Not one tear. She also continues to sleep 8 to 10 hours every night, without even crying when she wakes up. I go to get her when my alarm goes off at 7am and she is usually wide awake and smiling. We feel so lucky to have such a little angel, and I can't imagine my life without her. She is growing fast and I had to pack up some of her newborn clothes this month...even though her newborn pants still fit her little chicken legs. (She seriously has one and a half tiny rolls on her legs and about three under her chin! I love her chubby little cheeks, and finally understand why people used to always say that about me!) Here's one more pic to make you chuckle. Emilyn in her swimsuit for this coming summer! I can't wait to go swimming with her. She LOVES her baths...and I think she might just be a water baby.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

At Two Months Old...

Emilyn is now two months old! I can't believe it's already been that long...yet at the same time it's strange to think that two months ago she wasn't in our lives. She's added so much joy and love to our little family! I love being a mom, and J.D. is a great daddy.

Lately Emi is really starting to explore her facial mechanics and hands. She is smiling a lot more, playing with her tongue, widening her eyes and making the funniest faces. She plays with her hands all the time and loves to suck on anything and everything! Sometimes I hear this strange/loud slurping noise and look over and she's basically eating her hand. She's also starting to respond to our voices...which is one of the coolest things! We'll be heading to AZ in March so that Emi can meet our Phoenix family and friends, and we're so excited for the trip!

Below are some recent video's and pictures of Emilyn's latest developments. Enjoy!

Emi responding to Mama's voice.

Emi's 2 month birthday.

Emi just looking cute in her styling outfit!

Snow suit from Great Aunt Debbie.

Smile big!

Emi crying, but one of the first times in her bumbo chair! She's even cute when she's crying!