Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Tooth Number Three

Hello from Bloomington. We are just emerging from being snowed in (more on that later). Here are a few pictures of Cade and what we've been up to. If you hadn't already learned from my Twitterfeed, you'll be pleased to find out that Cade has his third tooth! It's his upper left front tooth. And if you don't use Twitter, you need to get on the bandwagon. :)

I think he's getting tougher and is developing his mom's pain tolerance, because he really hadn't been too fussy for this tooth. But....there might be a reason for that. The night before we noticed his tooth, I was holding him while sitting sideways in one of our kitchen chairs. He's become a very wiggly baby, and I wasn't watching his wiggles closely enough. He kind of jerked his head forward and smacked his upper gum into the back of the chair. Those seconds between impact and pain recognition happen to be longest seconds in all of time. I was just sitting there horrified and waiting........., waiting..........., waiting............, and he finally realized he'd hit his mouth and let out a scream. He had a little drop of blood on his gum. It was the first time we'd seen him bleed besides after a shot at the doctor, and it was no fun for me. I felt so bad; it is not fun seeing your little guy cry, especially when you feel partially responsible. I wished I could've taken the hit for him. But then the next day his gum seemed to be just fine and we noticed his tooth, which was right where he hit his mouth. We hadn't noticed it the night before, and believe me, we were inspecting. So maybe that's the trick to getting them through the gums expediently. Any dentists in the audience want to weigh in on that one? (Don't worry Mom, we're not planning on hitting him in the mouth every time we think he might be close to a new tooth.)

Back in October I posted a picture of Cade in his Rockies hat. Well, he's been growing. As I mentioned in my last post, he went from 20th to 95th percentile in height in just two months! His head has been growing too, and we tried the Rockies hat on him again. It's pretty close to fitting. I took a couple self portraits. Self portraits are tougher than you'd imagine, especially now that everything near Cade is a target for grabbing and inserting into his mouth. This was the best shot I could get.

He's getting more and more accustomed to spending time on his tummy. It's just a matter of time before he motors right on out of the room. The way he moves seems like he's super close to crawling. He just needs to get strong enough to lift his chest and head up. I got Cade a weight rack and we've been doing our baby bench presses, so any day now....... (And yes, this shirt says peanut, and yes, we think it's hilarious and think this outfit is about is as cute as they come. Props to Life is Good; this peanut ISN'T getting recalled.)

He's been eating great, too great in fact. The doctor recommended upping his solid food intake to allow Susie to keep up with the milk production. Doesn't matter. The kid scarfs down any and everything and still drinks Susie out of house and home (lame idiom, I know, but I couldn't think of any kid-friendly ones related to breastfeeding). Susie has been eating more than I have lately, and she's still shrunk to well below her pre-pregnancy weight. It's still hard to keep up with him. Anyways, his solid food repertoire now includes squash, sweet potatoes, green bean, peas, carrots, pears, and applesauce. We got this big jar of applesauce before we came up to B-town this week and he's eaten over half of it in a couple days. Maybe he's in another growth spurt. Someone needs to tell him there are only 5 more percentile points so he eases off. We tried a new food today and I never get tired of the "new food face." This time it was a spinach/carrot mix. He makes this face EVERY time he tries a new food and eventually likes it by the second or third time we feed it to him. Like I said, this face never gets old, and I thought I'd capture it one more time for posterity. The picture's a little blurry because he was making a yakking head thrust, but he still gets his point across.

It has snowed over a foot in Bloomington over the last day or so. IU actually canceled school today. I guess the beauty of working from home is that I never have a snow day (which can be good or bad, depending on how you look at it). I'm not complaining. I love the fact that I can travel with Susie occasionally and still get everything done I need to. It's actually good that I came with Susie because this morning our neighbor in Owensboro called and told me the tree in our backyard fell and ripped the power line out of our house last night. Owensboro got hit with a doozy of an ice storm and there are well over 20,000 people without power there right now. We're glad to be in an apartment in B-town that has power and heat but we're kind of wondering what we'll find when we get home on Friday evening. Apparently we have tree branches down all around the house but no apparent damage to the house, which is great. We're thankful to have great neighbors like the Hedges who keep an eye out on our house while we're gone. Mark went over and shut our water off so we wouldn't have to worry about pipes bursting with the power out. I talked with the utility company today and with so many people without power it could be quite a while before we get it restored at our house. If it's not back up when we get home this weekend we'll have a chance to light up the fireplace for the first time! Adventures never cease! Cleaning up the branches in the yard will keep us warm.

So because the snow looked so inviting today we bundled up Cade and took Chili for a walk down to the park at lunchtime. Cade really seems to like the cold, and who doesn't love to play in the snow?

Chili is an expert at making doggie snow angels. Here he displays perfect form, though he might receive a tenth of a point deduction for not pointing his toes.

Back at the apartment we just HAD to jump in the big snow bank the plows so graciously left us. You might not be able to tell in this small picture, but Chili's front lip is up and his teeth are showing and it looks like he's got a huge grin. Chili cheese dog!

Cade keeps learning new syllables and how to make new sounds. As a self proclaimed sound effect artist (what guy isn't?), I love repeating the sounds back and forth with him. He talks and talks and you can tell he's trying to say stuff to us, it just hasn't come out in English yet.....for the most part. Last weekend I woke up one morning to find that Susie had brought Cade into the bed with us and he was laying in between us awake already. I looked at him and smiled and told him good morning and clear as a bell he looked at me and said, "Hey Dada!" I'm pretty sure it was unintentional because he hasn't repeated it since, but Susie and I both cracked up. It was amazing. His random syllables came together beautifully in that moment. He's also been learning to make a "lalala" sound with his tongue. The other night I was saying "I love you" to him and it sure sounded like a rough "Ah love loo" coming back. We're not sure how much he's comprehending speech, but it's fun to imagine he's saying stuff to us. I can't wait to hear him say "I love you Daddy" for the first time.

The other thing he's just learned to do is to scrunch up his nose and eyebrows and breathe in and out through his nose really fast. It's hilarious. I caught it on video a number of times, and none of them do the real life version justice. Enjoy these two short clips. Thanks for keeping up with us!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Happy January!

So I've not been good at posting lately. I promised more pictures of Cade from December and I've let school and work and busyness take up my time. I've got those pictures as well as some new Cade information for you today! We took Cade to the doctor yesterday and he's definitely grown. It's safe to say that he has caught up (and in some respects passed) other kids his age. He weighs 17 pounds, 12 ounces, which puts him slightly above the 50th percentile. His head is 17.5 inches around, which puts him in the 75th percentile and right on track to have his dad's large melon. And he is now 28 inches tall, which puts him in the 95th percentile! Tall and lean (and strikingly handsome, if you ask me). I told Susie he's a mere 4 inches away from being half her height. We're very proud of him and how well he's eating and growing.

We've decided that six months is definitely a very fun age. He's becoming more interactive every day. Just this morning I was saying "dadadadada," "mamamamama," "dogdogdogdogdog," and other things to him like we frequently do and he looked at me and said "doydoydoydoy." I'm not sure if it was intentional or not, but it made me smile. He's always trying to communicate and speaks his mind quite frequently. Maybe it will be with real words soon? And he's not crawling yet but he can kind of inch around. He can't lift his head and upper body off the ground with his arms, but he'll push his rear end up in the air with his legs and then kind of slide forward like an inchworm. It's just a matter of time before we're chasing him around.

We would appreciate your prayers for our health in the coming week or so. Yesterday Cade had his latest round of immunizations. One of them was his last round of the Rotateq immunization. When Cade received the last round of the Rotateq he was sick and threw up for a couple days and then passed the rotavirus to Susie and then on to me. It was like death had fallen on our household. We couldn't keep anything down and had fevers. We wondered if it was a coincidence but when relaying our stories found that other families had experienced the same thing with their kids. I grudgingly allowed Cade to have his last round yesterday, but I honestly couldn't recommend this immunization to other families. The doctor told us not every insurance covers this immunization (our does), so not every kid gets it. If not every kid gets it, then it must not be a life or death thing. If I had it to do all over again I'd turn it down. So we're kind of bracing ourselves a little, washing our hands like maniacs, keeping the bottle of Lysol handy, and praying for good health.

Another thing the doctor told us was that we could start mixing solid foods into Cade's diet along with milk, cereal, and baby foods (sweet potatoes and carrots are his favorite) we've been feeding him. So when we went out to eat last night we gave him a couple little soft pieces of bread for him to work on. Susie was holding him and took her eyes of him for a second and he grabbed a piece of prime rib from her french dip sandwich and had plans for that as well. I grabbed it out of his hand; we were laughing pretty hard. Here's a picture of him eyeing Susie's sandwich.
He's also recently taken an interest in his feet. He loves hanging onto them and rocking around. It makes changing his diaper a little more challenging because his hands roam around south of the border while we're trying to clean him up. He spends half the day with his hands in his mouth and we don't want him recycling anything, so it takes a little more vigilance to watch his hands while changing him. That and the fact that he's so wiggly have moved us up the diaper changing/baby dressing difficulty scale a few notches.Last weekend was Susie's birthday, so her parents and her Aunt Fran came in. We had a great time with them. We went to Shogun, a hibachi-style Japanese restaurant, on Susie's birthday and Cade really seemed to enjoy the show (that shirt is definitely going in the too-small pile; it seems like he's growing out of everything!). Cade's been sleeping a lot better when he's at home. It's still a little bit of a challenge up in the apartment in Bloomington since Susie tries to be mindful of her neighbors. We think he's picked up on that and uses her courtesy as a way to get more snuggle time in bed at night. That makes for some very tired mornings at school. But he has been doing better at home and has even slept through the night a four or five times since the new year. Last night we tried a suggestion from the doctor. He told us that he's definitely big enough that nutritionally he doesn't need to get up and eat in the middle of the night, but it's probably just a habit for him now. He suggested putting him down when he's ready and then waking him up to feed him right before we go to bed. So Susie fed him around 11 and he slept until 7! Hopefully that isn't a one-night deal and he can start making it more routine. Sleep is good. :)

Well, here are some pictures of Cade and Susie's photo shoot in Colorado. There are too many good ones to put up here, but here are some of the best (and thanks Amy and Mom!). (The first picture is of him in a sleepsack. He sleeps a lot better in these and we're not sure why. Every night he's slept through the night he's been in one of these, so they are standard procedure now. It also makes it easy to do a midnight diaper change. He doesn't mind diaper changes during the day but he HATES getting changed at night. The sleepsacks just have one zipper up the front so it's easy to get it off him and quickly change him which is another big advantage. Inventor of the sleep sack, thank you.)

Friday, January 2, 2009

Merry Christmas from Colorado!

Well, I'm finally getting around to posting about our trip to Colorado for Cade's first Christmas. We hope your Christmas and New Year were as great as ours. Here are some pictures from our trip.
Cade's an old veteran when it comes to flying now. He's wearing red corduroy overalls that I wore when I was a baby. Unfortunately we had two flights on the way out with a layover in Kansas City. He really did well, but you could tell he was tired of flying by the end of the day. It probably didn't help that he dropped a HUGE bomb in his pants about 45 minutes from the Denver airport. If it's possible, I'd like to meet the person who can change a poopy diaper in an airplane bathroom. We elected to wait and try to keep his mind off his backside as we descended into the Rockies. The lady next to us graciously suggested a change on the traytable, but we just as graciously declined. So we held our noses and bounced him around, which I think just spread the turd between his diaper and his innermost layer of clothes. This is why we always pack at least one extra change of clothes in his diaper bag.
Since we flew in on Christmas Eve, the first order of business was the traditional Gronseth Christmas Eve spaghetti dinner. After dinner we let Cade try out another new food: bananas. This turned out to be a not so great decision. More on that later.
After dinner Cade fell asleep and was awakened by a slimmed down Santa Claus. He really wasn't sure what to make of the situation. It was either because he wasn't quite awake or because Santa had an eerie resemblance to his Grandpa.
Christmas morning was fun. Cade really got into unwrapping the presents.

We eventually realized he wasn't enjoying the unwrapping for the actual presents. It was for the paper. Yum!
Unwrapping presents is tiring, especially when you're not very experienced at it yet.
All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth.....and I got 'em. We think Cade got his teeth from his mommy because they are anything but straight. They look like an inverted snowplow. Here's hoping for a reduction in the price of braces!
Christmas Day dinner was a big prime rib. Cade's lobbying for a piece due to his new teeth. He was making the case that he needed to try them out and creamy bananas and carrots weren't much of a challenge for teeth. We told him he'd end up having some processed prime rib the next day and he was ok with that.
Our big present for the year was snowshoes! So we took Cade out a couple days after Christmas. He was also showing off his new hat and gloves. He really seemed to like it. He's shown that he's comfortable in the cold (taking more after the parent that didn't grow up in Florida). :) That's a good thing, since my mom's backpack thermometer read 7 degrees when we got to our destination. It was a beautiful day and a lot of fun.
I got a backpack frame carrier for my last birthday, and this was my first chance to try it out. Cade really seemed to enjoy it. For the first part of the hike he looked all around and just watched the trees and the snow. He eventually fell asleep.
Here we are at the "falls," which ended up being a frozen creek. As we made our way down he really started crying very hard. At first we thought it was the cold, but it turned out to be the bananas he'd been eating for the past couple days. Grandpa played the hero by taking Cade and running back down the trail to the car with him. He wasn't the least bit cold, and it was hard to console him. He really had some bad stomach pains for a couple days, and when we quit feeding him bananas it went away. I guess it's good we feed him one new food at a time because then it's easy to isolate the ones that give him problems. We've since started on sweet potatoes and he's scarfed those like it's going out of style.
One really cute thing he's started doing is reaching for dogs. Here he is reaching for my sister's dog, Bella. He's also reached for my parents' dog, Maggie, our friend Alicia's dog, Gracie, and Chili. I think Cade and Chili are going to be great buddies when Cade gets mobile. Today Susie found Chili sleeping in front of Cade in his "guarding" position. I know Chili feels a little left out now that Cade is around, but it's great to see him embracing Cade as part of the family.
Cade loves to play "balancing baby." He just gets into this zen-like frame of mind and sits very still and smiles at me. Hilarious.
Smiley Cade with Nana.

My sister Amy and my mom spent some time doing a couple "photo shoots" with Cade and Susie. There are too may good pictures from that to include in this post so I'll get those up in a future post soon so stay tuned. Cade's first Christmas was a great one. We hope yours was great too.