Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Playground Photo Shoot

We're fortunate enough to have a very talented photographer friend who randomly ran into Dave & Sophia at the Library Park in Cambridge. Thanks Sheraz!!

Here are some of the great shots he took:
The Dismount...

I'm kind of a big kid now...

Who took my swing?

I'm walking, yes indeed!

Look at all the colors...

What's going on at 16 months?

With all the excitement we've had going on lately (hospital visits, travel to London, etc) I wanted to give an update on what Sophia's doing development wise.

It's amazing to see how much she understands now. We have a pretty solid routine with her every day, so she knows what to expect, but she's been impressing us left and right with some new skills.

At night, before bath, she and Dave always go downstairs to get the mail. The other night he told her they were going to do this. She ran off - we looked for a moment and then found her waiting patiently by the front door for Dave. She climbed all the way down and up the stairs by herself. Very cool.

She loves dogs - everywhere we go, we see them. She greets them with an "oof - oof" of her own. In fact, we have a book all on dogs. When I ask her to get it, she finds it off her shelf and brings it to me and says "oof-oof".

She's totally into brushing her teeth with a "big girl" brush now.
She also is mostly feeding herself. She has her own plates and silverware and is quite content to munch away - new favorites are: Chicken Salad, bagels, fish nuggets and chicken patties. After our stint of sickness, she was drinking Rice Milk (or Drink) for awhile quite happily.
Apparently, it's also very fun to wear our food. (I guess I used to shove a black olive on each of my fingers - so why not tortellini!)

She also has some new words: "Nonni" is for her sitter Lidiana (we just figured this out yesterday!) She has also started to say "Mama," but not with much consistency. (When you say it back to her, she responds with "Daddy." Hmmm...) She also says "Yurt" for yogurt.

Nice work my little one. She's growing big and strong - I definitely think we're in the midst of a growth spurt judging by the way she's eating and sleeping lately. Now if only those 2 ugly molars would come through!

Monday, March 14, 2011

The Good Stuff - London

Well, after all the trauma, we finally made it to London.
Sophia was a trooper. Though the plane ride was hellish, Sophia was kind enough to nap throughout the day as we rolled around in the stroller. So the game became: Pictures of Sophia sleeping next to important landmarks. We must have seen all the big sights and plenty of cool neighborhood stuff, though I don't think Sophia really saw any of it.
Starting off the day:

St. Paul's Cathedral:
Telephone Booth:
Hey Sophia - look - Big Ben. Parliament.
Luckily, she perked up for her first visit to a proper English Pub:
(her food intake generally involved French Fries (aka chips) and Croissants. YUM!
Of course, there was some play time with her friend JJ back at the house:
and her "cheeky" look:

It was a great, albeit brief trip.
Finally, after a 7 hour plane ride too hellish to even begin to describe, we made it home to Boston.
I would do the trip again in a second. I have no regrets about taking Sophia, but I wouldn't do the flights by myself. The tag team is really necessary on flights of that length. Our friends Tera, Jimmy and JJ were so amazing and hospitable, despite Sophia & I battling the time adjustment, a few remnant pukes and not much enthusiasm from Sophia in the beginning. The highlight of all the time zone craziness was coming back to the States during Daylight Savings transition. It meant we only had a 4 hour difference instead of 5, and while Sophia woke up at 4am this morning, she did curl back in from 6a-9a, giving me a little respite and time to catch up on sleep too. Bring on the next adventure.

Wow - What a Week (Part 2)

So after the excitement of visiting Children's Hospital, we knew there would be some recuperating time. We weren't surprised to find Sophia was not particularly hungry the next day, after all that she had gone through. She seemed otherwise to be in good spirits. Fast forward to 2:30 when the sitter calls me at work to say Sophia is throwing up. A lot.

Not good. Not good at all.
The poor thing can't keep anything down - water, juice, bread. Nada.(We had gone through a similar puking spree in December, which I caught as well. It wasn't a pretty sight.) But she did go down to sleep fairly easily (I think exhausted from everything). Sadly, we had 2 more bouts of puking throughout the night, including one event after which she looked really drawn. I was concerned about dehydration and called the on-call doctor. They recommended Pedialyte and gentle rehydration, which worked like a charm. By 7:30am she was back drinking and generally in good spirits, only a bit clingy (which isn't her style). She was able to keep small, bland bits of food down (pasta, etc) and after a check in call to our pediatrician, we loaded up and headed to the airport. Yup - London, with a small, recently ill child. But all the signs were pointing to recovery for her. And besides, we had a whole plane ride in front of us to sleep. What could go wrong??

Well, Sophia has never liked to miss out on anything - she will play bobbing head doll (you remember from boring lectures in college - sleeping than popping awake just to make sure no one caught you!) which is essentially what we did for the whole ride over to London. It was a 7pm flight and we landed in London at 6am London time (so 1am our time). She slept probably a total of 2.5 hours (in 45 minute clips) and I slept next to nothing, walking around with her and trying not to wake the other passengers. But we made it and we were in London. Hooray! Bring on the sights and good friends!

Wow - What a Week (Part 1)

It's been quite a week - there has been so much going on that it'll probably take multiple entries to catch it all - the good, the bad & the ugly. Yes, there were definitely all three.

Sophia turned 16months last Monday. What was supposed to be a semi-normal day - Dave & I going to work, the babysitter coming to play and spoil Sophia rotten, all while preparing for our big trip to London - got derailed early on in the morning when Sophia fell off the bed and was knocked unconscious. Dave picked her up and she was completely limp in his arms - we rushed downstairs to our amazing neighbor, who happens to be a nurse, for help (both mildly hysterical by this point.) Sophia was out for about 15 seconds, and was quite woozy when she came to.

We decided a trip to Children's Hospital was the right answer. I have honestly never been so scared in my life as I was that car ride. Sophia was awake, but completely dazed and thoroughly out of it. The people at Children's were wonderful - the took care of us quickly and worked with us every step of the way.

The main thing was getting a CT Scan of Sophia's head. Because she was knocked unconscious and was dazed for awhile, they just needed to make sure there were no brain bleeds. Getting the scan took 3 attempts.

Attempt 1: After giving her a neurological exam in the room, they decided we'd try to just bring her to the CT Scan with no sedation and see if that worked. As we expected, it was a failure. Once she was on the table and her head secured in the little holder, she freaked. So we took her back and they administered an oral sedative and hooked her up to some monitors, which she promptly ripped off one by one, including the pulse mechanism hooked up to her toe that made it look like Rudolph's nose. But she did indeed fall asleep.

Attempt 2: They wheeled our sleeping child to the CT room. She has never been great on the transfer (i.e. asleep in one place and being moved to another) but she made it down the hallway in all the hospital chaos with out a flicker. So we were hopeful. When the nurse went to transfer her, she abruptly awoke and again, wanted no part of the CT machine. The tech looked at me and asked we thought she'd settle down. I laughed a little and said, no. She has what you might call a stubborn streak (wonder where she got that from??)

Attempt 3: After returning to the room, we decided the best course of action was to sedate her via an IV and take her in then. The good news was that she was feisty and active, but we didn't want to take any chances with a latent brain bleed. Getting the IV in was quite the process as you can imagine and nothing pained me more than seeing my baby in pain (I am the world's biggest wuss when it comes to needles, but I knew it was 10x worse for her not knowing why these people were sticking her). When we asked if they were going to secure the IV with more than tape, the very nice nurse who put it in said to us "Oh no, most kids tend to forget about it." Again, I laughed a little and said, "Probably not ours - she's made mincemeat of most of the other things that have been put on her thus far." As I said this, Sophia was busily trying to pull off the tape and tug/chew on the IV piece. As the nurse saw this, she quickly went to get something to secure it further.

After a bit more of a painful wait, it was time to go back to the CT room. The Doctor informed us that most kids knock out with 1, maybe 2 doses of the sedative. He could administer a max of 5 doses. Sophia was clearly not happy about being back in the CT room, but as he pushed the first dose, she seemed to lull a bit. For about 10 seconds. And then she was back to full thrashing. Then, dose 2. Same thing. Dave & the tech were watching through the monitor as I stood at Sophia's side. We made it up to the fourth dose before Sophia was some what calm enough to get the scan, though, in reality, she was still very awake and making it clear she would not go under for us. Luckily, though, she stayed still enough for the pictures to be taken.

The doctor commented that she was certainly a fighter - he didn't see kids her size/age not go under often. The other doctor complimented us on her "Vigor, Spunk and independence. But good luck when she is a teenager! :)"

Happily, all checked out okay and after a long ordeal where she was more crabby from not being able to eat the whole day, we went home.

She fell off the bed because we left her unattended for 10 seconds. It was a freak accident - she is completely capable of getting on and off on her own. (We think she tripped this time.) We were racked with guilt and pain for our daughter. One of the doctors said to me (as she is also a mom) "The good news is she is fine. Don't beat yourself up. None of us are perfect and there is too much pressure to be. It was an accident, it happens. Keep an eye out and be thankful she is fine."

Whew...we also received the go ahead to head to London Wednesday. Until....Part 2

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Bath Time Fun

So with all the changes, learning and occasional angst, one of our favorite times of day with Sophia is bath time. Dave loves to style her hair with shampoo - I can't tell who actually gets a bigger kick out of it - her or him. It's great bonding time though.

Here are a few fun shots:

And a short video of her discovering the water coming out of the faucet.