We will no longer be "backyard farmers." It's so sad. We sold our cute little goats and bunnies (except for Hunza, of course) this week because we are starting to get ready to sell our house. You can't very well sell a suburban house with a backyard full of.... 5 chickens, 3 rabbits, 2 goats, and 2 ducks. It just doesn't fly. So I finally put an ad up on Craigslist and got quite a few responses. The first guy to respond was super cool-- he lives in a sustainable intentional community and has his PhD in sustainable agriculture or something like that! We were sooo excited- he does all sorts of cool things (like living in a house made of shipping containers and going on humanitarian missions teaching people how to make windmills and organic farming and everything!!) and was really really nice. He was great with the animals (he bought the two rabbits and the goats) and I felt very satisfied for them to go to a GOOD new home. He told us we were welcome to come out to the farm anytime and see things. They even teach classes at their farm about everything they do, and he writes papers about all of it. So cool!! Here is their community farm, although their website needs a little love. Click here to see what they are all about!
Since Daniel took down the rabbit housing, Hunza is hanging out on the ground until we come up with a new plan for him (he's been banished to the great outdoors since Ezekiel has come home). The chickens come to check things out. This was too funny- they were so curious. At least Hunza didn't seem to mind.
We're keeping the chickens until we actually put the house on the market and get ready to move, since they are such good layers and they are so easy to take care of. At least we will still have them.... the backyard is so boring now! I will have to change the title of my blog.
I guess the plus out of all this is that we got $140 for selling the animals, which we decided to use for Christmas money. We weren't going to get eachother anything, but now we each get $70... we're waiting until after Christmas to get all the after Christmas sales and we are exchanging gifts on New Years. It will be fun.
I finnished my sling!! Before I actually put Ezekiel in it, I wore it around with a bag of potatoes and a bag of rice to get used to the way it feels. Let me just tell you.....
Zeke LOVES this thing!!
I'm happy with the way it turned out, especially for my first try. I ordered 5 more sets of rings because I know about a katrillion pregnant people who will be wanting baby gifts, and I want a second.. third.... fourth one for myself. I think I will have to order more rings.
This one is made of two layers of plain old cotton. It is in theory reversable, although I think I prefer the brown being on the outside (except the brown tends to gather lint). I made it 30" wide by 2.5 yards long, which was the largest size according to the directions. I think for the next one I will make it 26" wide, as the pleated area is so large it either inhibits the use of my left arm or cuts into my neck, depending on how it's worn. I am happy with the length, though-- I like the long tail. I think I will also make future slings with just one layer of heavier material instead of two layers of medium weight material-- this one is a little bulky (although it's getting broken in).
Ezekiel does not want to be put down. He wants to be in this thing all the time-- I'm wearing him right now as I type! And he's sleeping! We tend to get a little sweaty in the sling, so he's just in his diaper. I'm a little worried that he will sleep all day and then be up all night- as it is, he likes to be awake from about 3-5am. I'm glad he's so happy in this thing, because (at least the last few days) he seems to be kind of a fussy baby. He's rarely content to just hang out with himself. Now he can hang out with me! We're totally portable! Well, within the 25 feet of his oxygen tube, that is. :) Here is an awesome website about baby wearing!
Our friends Kyle and Sarah stopped by the other day with their new little girl, Aleah Corinne. Here are the little babies together! Aleah is quite a chunky little thing, already a whopping 10lbs!! She is so beautiful! She kept hitting Ezekiel in the face, and he kept sleeping. Notice him in his stylin sweater!! He finally grew into it! He will be wearing it every day until he outgrows it, I'm sure. If Ezekiel isn't eating, sleeping, or cuddling with me, he's hanging out with dad, who sings him Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" and reads him books on economics. Here is my sling! In the making! It should sooo be finnished by now, but I had sewing machine problems. Then I figured out the problems, then I ran out of thread. Still out of thread. I'm going to go get more.... soon. Really soon. After I lollygag on the computer and feed the baby. It will hopefully be reversable with the green/blue pattern on one side and a lovely espresso brown on the other.
And here is the little man right now as I type. He is snoozing away. (I know you aren't supposed to put babies to sleep on their tummies, but he's on monitors so we know if he isn't ok. We won't do it once he's off oxygen/monitors/etc. I could hear that lecture forming in your head!)
Yesterday he had an appointment at the special baby clinic, which is where he will be followed by the neonatologists to check his development, etc. Good news-- he's already a whopping 8lbs 2oz!! So between Monday and Thursday he gained 6oz! Since he is growing so well they want us to start weaning him off his feeding tube, which is fine by me. Now we are just bottle feeding him when he seems hungry instead of bottle/tube feeding on a strict schedule. I like this new arrangement much better. I know there is a lot to be said for keeping babies on schedules, but the hospital schedule was too rigorous. And he's doing great today! If he keeps up the good work for the next few days, we can take the tube out. YAY!
Today we had an opthalmology appointment. Dr. Zumbro (the opthalmologist who sent us to Houston- we love you Dr. Zumbro!) said his eyes look great!! He doesn't see any problems any more. We have another follow up appointment the 22nd, but it doesn't seem as if he will have any long lasting eye problems. We thanked Dr. Zumbro for sending us to Houston, explaining to him that if we had stayed at Wilford hall, we would still be in the hospital for a while. He was pleased that he could help us out, saying with a smile, "Well, do you believe in providence?" Yes! We do! He's a really nice man.
Both of the men in my houshold are sleeping away right now. It's quiet and kind of warm in here. I'm sipping my coffee. I'm happy. :) Seriously, every single time I make a cup of coffee, I thank God that he created it. I love coffee. I love that God made Coffee.
Alright off to buy thread and finnish my sling. I want it finnished so badly, I practically dream about it. It better turn out as good as I imagine! If it does, you all will know what to expect from me for future baby gifts :)
This is Ezekiel's new cousin! She was born yesterday, which also happened to be her great-grandma Elliott's 82nd birthday AND her Uncle Josh and Aunt Jamie's 3rd wedding anniversary! We're so glad you made it here London! Sending hugs and kisses your way!
1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper. I remember my dad teaching me how to wrap presents. He is still the best wrapper I know!
2. Real tree or Artificial? Real is much more fun. We always had a real one growing up. Daniel and I have only ever had a fake one. It's one foot talll.
3. When do you put up the tree? I just put ours up today!
4. When do you take the tree down? After New Year.
5. Do you like eggnog? Mmmm yes I forgot about egg nogg! It doesn't feel like christmas yet... I will have to go get some. Or make some- I think someone gave me a recipe last year.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? Ummmm I remember lots of good ones. My parents spoiled me! They always got really good gifts.
7. Hardest person to buy for? Everyone. I am NOT a good gift-buyer. I need you to tell me what you want. I've gotten better, though, being married to the best gift-giver I've ever met.
8. Easiest person to buy for? Probably myself, eh?
9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes, we have one that Daniel's mom painted.
10. Mail or email Christmas cards? I don't ever remember doing either. Now that we have a kid, we might have to start.
11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? I don't remember. I am blessed with forgetfulness.
12. Favorite Christmas Movie? All the clamation christmas ones, and then Elf.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Recycled? Um....
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Christmasy things, like sugar cookies and egg nogg.
16. Lights on the tree? Not on the one-footer.
17. Favorite Christmas song? This year it's "I'll be home for Christmas".
18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Growing up we always traveled, but now it's just us stuck down here in Texas so we just hang out with ourselves. We had a really nice Christmas last year, though. It was nice to do our own thing.
19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? Dasher Dancer Prancer Vixen. Comet Cupid Donner Blitzen. Rudolf.
20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Again, the one-footer can't handle anything on top.
21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? One Christmas Eve and the rest Christmas morning.
22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Consumerism for sure!! And feeling kind of guilty because we never get anyone presents.
23. Favorite ornament theme or color? I'm just not much of a decorator. This isn't a good question for me.
24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? This seems repetitive now. I don't know. Probably something I slaved over all day that is super duper delicious.
25. What do you want for Christmas this year? I just wanted my son home and he is!! I would also love a down mattress topper.
26. Who is most likely to respond to this? I don't know. Aimee, Jamie?
27. Does Santa wrap your gift or leave them unwrapped? Who ever heard of leaving gifts unwrapped??? I don't understand! Of course Santa wraps all the presents!
I meant to write sooner, but being a mom is some busy work! Busy, happy, wonderful work. I don't really mind at all getting up at 3am to feed him. I don't mind when he cries. I feel completely happy now that everything is (almost) the way it was supposed to be. I've even lost 3lbs since we've been home! Yay no more stress!
We had a nice trip back from Houston-- Ezekiel just slept the whole way. When we left the hospital, he was 7lbs 6oz. Today he had his first pediatric appointment, and he weighed 7lbs 13oz which also happens to be Daniel's birth weight! That was kind of a land-mark for me and I've been waiting for him to hit that weight, so I felt very blessed that the day we took him to the doctors just happened to be the day he weighed 7lbs 13oz. :) The pediatrician was wonderful-- I really really liked him. He reminded me of a mix between my cousin Brian and our favorite nicu nurse, Greg. I was worried about getting a stinky doctor, but I couldn't have been happier with this guy.
We have 3 or 4 doctors appointments this week. It's a busy week for us. When we went to the hospital today we realized we need to get a stroller. It's hard work lugging around a car seat full of baby and a diaper bag full of oxygen canisters and monitors. What I would rather do, though, is finnish the baby sling I am supposed to make. Then he can be on the front half of me, and I can put the oxygen and monitor in a backpack and just wear it. Strollers just seem so bulky to me. Fortunately nearly the entire time we were at the hospital (like 3 hours) he just slept so that made things easier.
I don't know what else to say. I could go on and on or I could stop now. We just love love love having him home. He is such a little bundle of joy! OH AND he is almost rolling over! We think he will probably do it before the end of the week. He just works and works at it, and he can get on his side-- he just needs to do that last little transition from side to tummy. It's so cute! He's also making much better eye contact since we've been home-- this was something I was concerned about in the hospital- he would never really look right at you, he always averted his eyes. But now he will just stare right at us. He seems really happy at home.
Here's Ezekiel and Daddy on the first night home.
Ezekiel loves staring at his dragon that he got from some nice ladies at the hospital.
This is him in his bouncy chair in the NICU. He loved this thing!
Here is a picture of him without anything on his face! Isn't he handsom? :)
Ok more pictures later! I gotta go feed this little guy.
We are soooo excited. I can't believe it!! We are eating lunch at the mcdonald house for the last time. We packed up and checked out of our hotel. The carseat is all ready to go. I packed up all of Ezekiel's things in the NICU. Tonight our little boy will spend his first night at home! I can't wait!
I still have a cold, but I think I'm almost over it. I got some tylenol and that's helping me feel a little better. I've been wearing a mask in the NICU. On the way home, I will drive and Daniel will sit in the back with Zeke. Then when we get home Daniel will take care of him until I am 100% better. Our little man weighs 7lbs 6oz today! He hardly needs any oxygen at all anymore-- he often goes hours and hours without it. We will still be taking oxygen home, though. Hopefully he won't need it for too long.
Tomorrow a home-health nurse is coming to our house to help us get all settled in and make sure we know how to do everything (which we do). I will be glad for the extra support just to make sure everything goes smoothly. Next week we will have about a gazillion appointments. One with the pediatrician, the optamologist, the pulmatologist, the special baby clinic, and I'm sure there will be more. It will be kind of overwhelming. But good. Now we are starting a new segment of our lives-- the four month NICU experience is OVER. Thank GOD!! This new chunk of life will be the "take my baby to a million doctor appointments and make sure he is developing correctly" chunk. Again, not at all what I had imagined life with a baby to be like, but still OK. I'm learning to be more flexible.
Right now we are just waiting for a phone call from the discharge coordinator so she can come help us get him set up to go. Hopefully we will leave in the next few hours. The next time you all will hear from me, I'll be home!! I will put a million pictures up. And I can't wait to catch up on all your blogs-- I'm so behind! I will be so glad to be back at home... even if we haven't bought any diapers yet.
We're NOT going home today. Should I be surprised??
They are concerened that Ezekiel is not gaining enough weight. It's a forever long story, but the gist is that because of his cronic lung disease they restrict the amount of fluids he can recieve. To make up for fewer calories because of less milk, they add fortifiers and formula to my breast milk to make it have more calories per ounce (they make it have 30, whereas my milk by itself has 22). Well they won't send him home on 30 calorie-per-ounce milk. The most they will send him home on is 27... he's been getting 27 for 5 or 6 days now, but not gaining enough weight. Today they decided to increase the volume and leave him on 27 calorie milk, but they are concerned about the extra fluid affecting his lungs, so, we have to stay here to see how he does. I think he will do fine. I just want to take him home. But it's ok.... soon enough. I guess that isn't the short version.
Meanwhile I got a cold, so I haven't gone to see him in 2 days because I don't want to get him sick. Daniel may have to go back to San Antonio on wednesday, we aren't sure yet. If he does, I will stay here, but no more stipend for a hotel and food, so I guess I will stay at the mcdonald house if they have room. We'll see what happens.
ANYHOW Ezekiel is doing really well. Fortunately he hasn't gotten sick from me, and Lord willing he won't. The last two days he is doing so well that he has even been able to be completely off of oxygen for 2-3 hours at a time!! That is wonderful!! If we don't end up going home until next week, he may not even need to come home on oxygen. That would be awesome!
I'm a little bored out of my mind, being sick and stuck in the hotel. I have nothing to knit with me. I can't believe it! The project I brought with me is all done except for the buttons need sewn on. It is this super cute baby sweater for our friends new baby. Anyhow, I think I will try and find a knitting store to which I can take the tram and get the ingredients for a pair of socks. I really want to learn how to knit socks. :) My big adventure today was coming over to the hospital to drop off milk at the milk bank and come to the mcdonald house to use the internet. woo-hoo. I am also hoping that room service will come while I am gone and give us clean towls and make my bed. :) I can't eat anymore pizza- that's what we've been eating every single night for dinner.
Ok I hope I'm not boring you all out of your minds. This blog isn't nearly so fun without pictures. And let me tell you, I have sooo many adorable pictures of my now-chunky little son. He is such a big boy now! Over 7lbs!! :) He's so precious.