Monday, December 21, 2009

Another Week Goes By

Last week was another busy week. James had visits from his occupational therapist, developmental therapist, and in-home nurse. The therapists say that James is making good progress. He can almost hold that head up. He definitely doesn't have nearly the floppy neck that he used to. James weighed in at 13 pounds 1 ounce on Wednesday.

We also saw James' surgeon last week. We had to go to the hospital for this visit because the surgeon wanted radiology to do a contrast study so they could determine how much his stomach has grown since his last surgery in October. We got to the radiology department at 9:30, but didn't get in until 10:30. Then they realized that the wrong type of appointment had been made, so we had to reschedule for 1 in the afternoon. Next we went to see the surgeon. He was very pleased with James' size and is confident that we can do surgery mid-January. We went back down to see the radiologist, but didn't get in until 2:30. It was a long day in the hospital because James was not allowed to eat and he wasn't napping well with all the commotion and an empty belly. It really threw off his day-time schedule, but I think we're finally back on it.

James has this week off so to speak. Next week he will see his occupational therapist and his pediatrician. He has to get his 4-month shots at his check-up...oh boy. Then on the 6th he goes to see the surgeon for one last weight check before surgery and we will also schedule surgery at this time.

We all had a nice weekend at home this past weekend. Dave and I took turns finishing up our Christmas shopping for each other. I made cookies. Dave's fantasy football team had a big win and now he's going to be in the final game. The Colts are now the ONLY undefeated team in the NFL. I made out the envelopes for our Christmas cards (we're still waiting for the cards to get finished at the printers so they're going to be late...sorry). James fell asleep sitting in my cute! All and all it was pretty great!

We are looking forward to all the family that will be visiting over the next couple of weeks/weekends. Stay healthy because we want company!!!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Fun-Filled Weekend

We had a great weekend with our visitor Kevin. I had to include the picture so that everyone would believe that he was here AND that he held James. Opa, if Kevin can do it, you can do it!

Friday night I made stuffed shells and french bread. I wanted something that I could make earlier in the day so that I wouldn't have to spend time in the kitchen once Kevin was here. Turns out that it's one of his favorite dishes...I guess I am just that good.

Saturday morning we put Kevin to work taking photos of James. We put James in real pants for the first time. He was so cute! James tired out pretty quickly so we didn't get too many good shots with his eyes open wide, but there were still lots of cute pictures. Thanks Kevin!

For dinner Saturday Dave and Kevin decided they wanted a seafood feast, so Kevin and I hit up the local market to see what we could find. We ended up falling into a seafood sale and we still came home with $60 worth of seafood including crab legs, lobster meat, scallops, and shrimp (and all the fixings). We made bacon-wrapped scallops, crab legs, lobster nachos, and shrimp in butter and Ol' Bay. It was all fantastic, although I was not brave enough to try the lobster nachos. Dave and Kevin said they were delicious though and that we should open our own restaurant.

Sunday Kevin made it home safely despite the rain and ice. Then David spent the evening putting together my new sideboard for the dining room. I spent a good part of Saturday going to different furniture stores trying to find the right piece. Styles have changed since we bought our table 3+ years ago and it's hard to find one that coordinates and isn't $1000. I ended up going with one from Ikea for $250. The color goes amazingly well with our table and it looks good in the room. Yay!

James' Occupational Therapist will be here soon, so I better be going. Enjoy the photo montage!

Kevin & James

The Seafood Feast

Dave claims James was smiling before this shot. I'll believe it when I see it!

This is my favorite family shot because the whole family is in it!

Silly Daddy!

Playing with his monkey rattle.

A close-up.
Looking at Daddy Our best present ever!
I have a feeling these two will be inseparable.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Little Successes

James had a check-up with the Neonatal doctors yesterday. They check on preemies around 3, 6, and 9 months of their first year to make sure they are growing well. Anyway, James is doing great. Yesterday we got to leave his heart monitor behind! He hasn't had any alarms in over 6 weeks, so he is now wireless! He is up to 13 pounds and he is now getting 8 ounce bottles 4 times a day...oink! oink! The doctors said this is the right amount for his weight and age though.

Tomorrow is James' 4 month birthday! One of Dave's college buddies is coming to visit us this weekend. Kevin has picked up a photography habit so he's going to bring his fancy camera and take lots of pictures for us. I'm hoping to get a family picture worthy of a Christmas card. I want to get them in the mail by the end of next week since Christmas is only 2 weeks away.

So Mic-Key button #3 broke Monday night so I had to once again change James' button. This time I called a surgical nurse at the hospital and she gave me a contact at Kimberly Clark, the manufacturer of the buttons. Apparently they had been having some trouble with buttons a few months back, but thought they had fixed all the problems. The lady with Kimberly Clark was super nice and helpful. She filed a complaint for me and then personally brought me over a year's supply of Mic-Key buttons (6). She also smoothed things over with the medical supplier that gave me a hard time last week. Hopefully the button he's wearing now will last until surgery and he won't need any of the buttons she brought, but we have them just in case.

James is working on taking afternoon naps in his pack 'n play this week. It was rough on Monday and then better on Tuesday. Then yesterday he had a doctor's appointment during nap time so we started over again today. It has been rough again today, but we're working on it. Our goal is to get the afternoon nap down pat by Christmas.

Now you are all caught up and I'm off to fold the laundry.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Bath Time

James had his first bath last night in the big boy tub! We have given him sponge baths up until this point because we have to be careful not to submerge his esophagus. I finally got this neat little incline seat for the tub so that he can take real baths. He loved it! He wasn't sure about putting his feet in the water at first, but he quickly became enamored. He even cried when it was time to get out. Dave thought I strategically placed the washcloth for the picture, but really I just didn't want to get peed on! I guess it served dual purposes.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Just Another Wednesday

It has been a crazy week. James has seen his cardiologist, occupational therapist, developmental therapist, and in-home nurse already. James is doing well. The cardiologist has released James and doesn't need to see him again unless his pediatrician recommends it down the road. The therapists keep giving us ideas to work with James to help him "catch-up" in his development...apparently 72 days in a NICU bed can set you back. Most of his slow progress is due to the fact that he can't eat and his therapists expect him to catch-up after corrective surgery. For now we just keep doing exercises with him and trying to convince him that his thumb and fingers can be really fun toys!

Currently James gets his food through a Mic-Key button in his belly. Of course he had no problems with any of the buttons he had in the hospital, but now is a different story. Today I had to put his third button in (I'm an RN now too...not really). This is the third button in 2 weeks and the buttons are supposed to last for 3 months. The last 2 have had holes in the balloon that holds them in place. I have been lucky enough to discover the broken balloons before the problem caused a trip to the ER both times. But each time this happens, I have to call the medical supplier and order a new button because you always have to have a back-up. Now that I've ordered my 4th button in 2 weeks, they think I'm running some type of scam. Apparently these buttons are quite expensive. Seriously? Maybe there's a black market out there for these things??? So after discovering his button was loose today, realizing the balloon was busted again, and replacing the button (all while having a minor panic attack), I called to order a new back-up only to have them accuse me of lying and possibly trying to commit insurance fraud. Ugh! They're putting a new one in the mail, but I should expect a call from their nurse (because we don't see enough as it is) and probably my insurance company. Oh Great! I need a vacation!

I'm off to make Cheeseburger Macaroni...don't tell Dave I'm using ground turkey instead of hamburger! It's his own fault really. Last week he mentioned that we shouldn't have red meat so much...apparently it's bad for us :)