Mini Mouse

Aug. 24th, 2010 09:26 pm
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Had our 1 year appointment yesterday and the little mouse still isn't really growing. We're up to a mere 27 1/2 inches and 16 lbs 2 oz. This puts her under the 3rd percentile in both areas. The doctor says she is concerned because her face doesn't look like it has a lot of baby fat left. She wants me to introduce cow's milk and asked me to add fats to the food we serve her. Where it makes sense, I have been doing the fat addition (butter on bread mostly) to no effect since the last appointment where she gave the same advice. I'm not sure about the cow's milk. I don't really get how that could be better than the breast milk she's already getting. This is one of the (many) doctors that wanted me to supplement with formula back in the first few months when she was growing well, so I'm hesitant to blindly follow her advice. One of my friends has recommended changing physicians, but I'm not sure that will solve things either. I got this woman on my side when I had Georgia growing well at the beginning on breast milk alone, but it's easy to be supportive when everything is going well. I'm not sure my friend's pediatrician, who is completely supportive of her, with her monstrously large child, would be as supportive of me and the mouse.

Georgia eats plenty to my mind, but I'm aware that I'm not an expert. I offer her 3 meals a day plus a snack or two and she eats until she's had enough and starts feeding dogs. Most meals are 1 or 2 pieces of fruit. Sometimes she eats a bit of meat or an egg. There's lots of cheese going. Usually there's some grains too (bread, rice or cereal, sometimes pasta). It doesn't look to me like she's wasting away. She plays fairly energetically, she isn't tired, she's happy most of the time, but even I will admit that it doesn't look like she's getting any bigger.

The doctor wants me to come back in a month for a weigh-in but I don't get exactly what this will get us. I'm pretty sure the result in a mere month will just be more of the same. No matter what the result I'm not going to go along with any supplement that doesn't feel "right" to me (none of the liquid diets are acceptable to my mind)

And there's the very real fact that I am only 25th percentile for height and Jason is under 5%, so it's not like we're expecting to get a giant here. How much of her growth is diet and how much is simply a matter of genes? Should I be worried? Will cow's milk really solve all my problems?
norsegirl: (Default)
Had our 9-month pediatrician's check up today and little mouse is very little indeed. For weight and height she's dropped down to the 4th percentile. The pediatrician commented that we'd keep an eye on it, that I should be feeding her more foods with fats (drizzle olive oil on her veggies, feed her avocado, butter her bread etc) and that she'd be worried if she dropped into the 3rd percentile or lower. What difference does that single percentage make? Also I'm wondering if I should be worried at all. We aren't all going to be perfectly average, and my family and Jason's both run small, so it's not like this is an entirely unexpected result. Also, she's proportionate, and it's not like she's looking slim. I'd be more worried about a baby that was 75th percentile for height but 25th for weight for example, even though both of those are within the more "normal" range.

She's still getting most of her daily calories from breast milk, but this is making me doubt that decision. Am I stunting her growth by not offering her more food?

On the flip side, her head has gone from 10th percentile last time to 30th percentile. There's a little part of me that's wondering if all this measuring isn't just a little bit subjective. By which I mean that other than the weight, two people could measure the same baby bit and come up with different answers depending on how baby stretched her legs or bent her head down or how the string around the head went over certain bumps.

I'm torn between wanting her to flourish and offering her more food and wanting to continue my laid-back parenting. Feeding food is a bit of a pain in the butt compared to breast milk, so I just tend not to do it as much. There's also conflicting info that I've read that implies that up to a year most of the calories are supposed to come from milk and eating is just to get practice with the act of eating. Is that really true or am I starving her?

Aaargh, this parenting thing is difficult.
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Being a mum is really hard on the body. I'm currently sitting on the couch in a horribly awkward position because Georgia is asleep and I don't want to wake the baby. If I hold her she will sleep for hours. If I put her down she wakes after 10 minutes and is cranky. So I sit in these awkward positions with my bladder busting because it makes Georgia happy. I hope Jason gets home soon because I really do need to pee.

Mini me

Oct. 25th, 2009 11:00 am
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The event yesterday was okay. I ended up staying up very late the night before. Georgia was fussy and not at all in the mood to sleep. I figured if I was going to have to be awake anyway, maybe it was time to get around to making an outfit for her. Made the dress in 2 or 3 hours that night, starting at 11 or midnight. Got up the next morning all inspired about how to make an apron dress work for a baby (no brooches, but I figured some large decorative buttons would make a reasonable imitation) and had to whip one of those up before we left for the event, which took about 2 hours. The apron's not as long as I'd have liked, but that was due to a limitation in the size of my scraps. Hopefully I'll have larger scraps when I make her next one.

I used what fabric I had easily at hand. Of course it was the scraps from my outfit, so I had a perfectly matching baby.

Meant to get a picture of both of us at the event, but of course never got around to it. Maybe I'll remember at the next event. Who knows when that will be though. Hopefully the outfit will still fit.

With all the sewing we got to the event quite late. I believe it was around 2:30 in the afternoon when we pulled in to the site. I had intended to spend most of the day hanging around with William, but I think I saw him for all of 10 minutes over the course of the day. I'd also hoped that Jason might get some archery in, but he decided that bringing the doggies would be more fun than shooting, so he just spent all day sitting around with me, and occasionally wandering off with the pooches. Dogs seemed to enjoy themselves reasonably well. They're getting very used to people in funny outfits, and seem to have realized that most of them will share food. Even Lizzy isn't her usual shy self when we go to events.

It was a beautiful day. Sunny with just a little bit of a breeze and the perfect temperature for me to be utterly comfortable with neither chills nor sweat. October in Texas really is fantastic as long as it's not a rainy day. In the evening it dropped down a tiny bit, but only enough that I wanted a shawl, not a cloak or a coat, so again, right about perfect.

I ended up spending my afternoon sprawled out on a blanket under a sunshade with a woman named Elizabetta (not sure on the spelling). She lives rather near us and has a beautiful 6 month old girl. She and I have been having many of the same issues (leaky boobs that just don't let up) so it was nice to compare solutions with her. She doesn't do the cloth diapering thing, so nothing to discuss there, which is a bit of a bummer since I am very excited about that subject. And of course we were able to discuss babies and garb, both making garb for them and coming up with nursing-appropriate gear for us.

Speaking of which, I decided to splurge and buy myself a more appropriate pin for my Norse ensemble. There's a local merchant down here whose stuff I just love. It's simple, inexpensive, and pretty accurate. I picked up a lovely brooch, and while I was looking through his Norse coin thingies for new danglies because I'm thinking it's about time to get back to the torch and make myself some new festoons he complained that people usually look at those and say "I can make that myself". My response was "well yeah, I could but then I'd have to invest in the tools to do so, and that's why I'd rather just buy them." He grinned and exclaimed "for you, 3 for $20" which was quite the steal. I was so pleased with the price that I picked out 6 lovelies for myself. His wife also took a chance to gripe about people who want to buy the metal bits and beads from Michael's and make their own festoons and I explained that I only want to make my own because I make my own beads. "Well that's totally different and good" she agreed.

I'll probably be back to buy more bits and bobs from them in the future. They have a rather reasonably priced brass needle case that I rather admire and lots of lovely Thor's hammers. Elizabetta commented that she didn't care for the period pins because she didn't want to be fussing with a pin while baby is crying for food and that she was going to go with hooks and eyes instead. But I discovered a neat thing... I can just leave the pin in place and slide myself out below it. It's also a lot more discrete than undoing the whole thing, which is what I was doing before.

The evening kind of left a sour note in my mouth, so I figured I should write about it.You're welcome to skip this part )

Anyway, have to run to the grocery store and pick up some supplies to make dinner for the gang tonight.
norsegirl: (Default)
Dr. Phil did a show on ADHD and ADD today and part of the show was "simple things you can do to help your child with ADHD or ADD"

1. Stick to a schedule
2. Organize
3. Be clear and consistent

How do these things only apply to children with this condition? My experience is that all "simple" creatures benefit from these treatments. Everything from children to pets appreciate those things. And heck, when you get right down to it, most adults are more comfortable with those things than without them too. Sure, we like a bit of spontaneity, but for the most part we appreciate schedules. And of course we all feel better when our homes are clean and organized. When it comes to anyone who claims they love the chaos I deeply believe they're just making excuses and justifications because getting organized is a lot of work (and I totally get that because it is). And isn't having a boss that isn't clear or consistent a major complaint among unhappy workers?

Why is this sort of advice put out there as something only for "special" kids when the truth is that it helps ALL children (and all relationships with other living creatures)?

Again we're just reinforcing my idea that doggies make great practice kids. The fur-babies wake at the same time every morning and expect to be let out. They expect to eat at the same time every night. And they head upstairs for bed at the same time every day. Any change to the schedule definitely gets them upset. And any time you want them to follow a rule, consistency is key. If you let them get away with something once they'll try it again and again. I'm not sure they care as much about things being organized. They are just dogs after all. All their worldly possessions would fit in one plastic bag.

Parenting isn't rocket science. Sure I expect to make some mistakes along the way, but I'm thinking the basics are pretty easy to grasp. It amazes me how many people don't think those simple three things are obvious and applicable to all children.

In other news we got our estimate for the ant treatment. It's a bit of a hit to this month's budget, but it has to be done. They'll be coming to do it tomorrow and as soon as it's done we'll head out to an SCA event for the weekend. Hopefully camping in the record-breaking heat won't be too bad. There aren't nearly as many ants around now, but there's still a few and there's an absolutely horrid ant mound near the AC unit outside, so it will be good to have them all dead. I found out what they like about fresh, clean laundry... apparently there are proteins in detergent and fire ants like protein. So it wasn't the fabric softener after all. And again, I guess this will teach me to put it away.

I really should go and get something done, but I really am exhausted from this whole week. I just want to curl up and sleep and do nothing at all. I'm hoping I can do some more creative/fun things next week since this week has been a whole lot of not fun.
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I know a lot of parents set rules for what their kids are and are not allowed to play with. My mother in law had a thing against guns. I can't recall any rules my parents might have had. As far as I can recall, we had everything. Though some things got taken away after a while (for example, the Snoopy Snow Cone Machine made a mysterious disappearance when it was discovered just how very messy it was).

I'm toying with a rule for our house... nothing electronic or requiring a battery. Nothing drives me quite as nuts as hearing the same electronic tune over and over like a cell phone that won't stop ringing. I'm not necessarily against repetitive tunes (my mother used to have a musical mobile that wound up and worked like a music box and I thought that was fantastic, and it obviously played only one thing) nor am I against noise in general (banging pots and pans is okay by me). What bothers me about it is the reliance on technology to entertain, and the waste of energy this represents. I don't think children, especially very young ones, need batteries to be entertained. I'd like to try to be environmentally responsible, and battery-powered toys just don't fit with my ideals there. It's certainly something that will be revisited when the kid gets old enough to want a Nintendo DS, but as an infant/toddler, it's something I'd like to avoid.

I'm also not real nuts about plastic, but I don't think I'll be quite as strict on that one. So far everything I've purchased has been made of wood, metal or cloth or a combination of those things. I've got some used stuff that's plastic that I will probably keep, and I don't think we'll be refusing gifts that aren't natural materials, but I have a preference anyway.

Other than the little beagle stuffed animal, and the used toys I got off craigslist and my mother, we haven't really got any toys for the baby yet, so today I went out in the world to see what I could find. Shopping for toys is (as expected) a tonne of fun!!! Babyearth had a fantastic selection of wooden toys that I was just drooling over. Many were for children of an older age range, and I can't wait to start buying building blocks, tea sets and little pots and pans and rolling pins and the like (Ikea has an amazing selection of this stuff). Though there wasn't as much selection for the very youngest kids, I did manage to find a few items that were suitable for our not-even-here-yet little one. Between Ikea and Babyearth I secured an abacus, a bead roller coaster, a band in a box, and a wooden rattle/teether thingy. The teether is probably the only thing that will be useful at this point, and even then it might take a few months. The other items will just be colourful room decor for now. I'm not sure about the age ranges for stuff or when babies get interested in something other than sleeping and eating. I also picked up a couple of those little fabric books with different textures and stuff on the pages. Rhonda said those are a big hit at the pediatrician's office where she works.

For the future, I'm desperately wanting The Coliseum in wooden blocks! but that's for a few years down the road anyway. And I think we just might have to get the beagle to watch over the nursery. I'm also waiting for babyearth to get a restock on this neat little wooden roller toy. And apparently I'm told I need to get some kind of tummy-time play mat or baby gym with hanging things and also stuff at ground level to encourage time on both back and tummy. There's lots of variety and selection in this area though, so I figured I'd let Jason come along on the shopping trip for that. I could get inspired and make one myself, but with everything else that still needs doing around the house (curtains and stuff) I'm not sure I'd find the time. Probably easier just to find one we like and buy it.

Honestly, I get way more excited about the play possibility of classic toys that inspire creativity and imagination-play than electronic doo-dads. And I seem to remember I felt the same way as a kid. I just hope my child shares that opinion.


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September 2010

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