Tuesday, January 31, 2012

it's a beautiful day in the neighborhood

We had an unseasonally GORGEOUS day today and I wanted to take full advantage of it!!  On Tuesdays we babysit for my cousins two kids and I kept them outside from the second they got off the bus.  Samantha had an absolute blast.  She got to sit in the grass for the first time ever and I think she really enjoyed it.  Her goal was to shove all the grass and leaves into her mouth.  Oh so fun to be a baby!!  She also got her very first wagon ride which she LOVED.  We ran circles around the cul de sac for nearly thirty minutes and she just hung over the side of the wagon taking it all in.  I definitely think a wagon is in her future!

We had such a great day and I can't wait for the warm weather to be here for good so we can do it more often!!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

allergy update

Today brought us back to the allergist to continue Samantha's allergy testing.  Since Samantha is allergic to eggs, she is at risk for having a reaction to the flu vaccine.  We started off with a prick test on her arm with 5 pricks.  We did three of the flu vaccine I believe small, medium, and large concentrations.  We also did a prick for peanuts since in 20% of egg allergy cases there is also a peanut allergy.  Then, of course, the control dot.  Thankfully all three of the vaccine and the peanut test were negative!

After the prick test we had to move onto a test shot.  The nurse had to give Samantha two shots in her upper arm.  One was a shot of saline as a control and the second shot had a low dose of the flu vaccine.  After 15 minutes she was checked and thankfully, again, all results were negative.

At this time we were able to administer the full flu vaccine.  She got the shot in her leg and then we waited 20 minutes to be sure there wasn't a reaction.  Even after all the trial runs!!  She was fine after the 20 minutes and we were free to go home.  Phew!

It was a long appointment and I feel bad for all Samantha had to go through.  Thankfully for now, it's done!  At least until next year when we go back to find out if she outgrew her allergy.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

it's an allergy

Yesterday Miss Samantha had her appointment with the allergist since she had a reaction to scrambled eggs a few weeks back.  We decided to test for a few things but I can't remember them off the top of my head.  I know we did milk, soy, egg yolk, and egg whites.  The milk and soy tests came back negative.  However, both the egg yolk and egg white came back positive.  Her reaction to the egg whites was more severe and the rash actually started traveling up her little arm.  Poor girl.

Our game plan for now is to go back annually to restest to see if the allergy has been outgrown.  In the majority of cases, an egg allergy is outgrown by age 5.  In some rare cases, however, the allergy is lifelong.  Hopefully Samantha won't be one of those cases!  If she happens to still be allergic at age 4, they will do a blood test to determine how severe the allergy is.  Not sure why they don't do the test now, but oh well.  We are going back on Thursday to test to see if it is safe for her to get the flu shot since the flu shot is cultured on egg yolk.  I'm unsure either way if I'll let her do the shot, I need to do some research into it first.  We are also going to be testing her for a peanut allergy.

For now, Samantha cannot have eggs in any form.  Since I'm breastfeeding, I'll also need to make some dietary changes.  I can have eggs in baked goods, however, I can't have plain eggs on their own.  Eggs are a breakfast staple in our house so it's going to stink to not be able to enjoy them, but I'm willing to do it for Samantha.

For now, we will carry an epipen with us wherever we go in case she has a severe reaction and we will pray that in a few years, this allergy will be a thing of the past!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

my little non crib sleeper!

You remember those first weeks months when you were up at all hours of the night tending to your newborn baby?  Yeah, that's been us the past week.  We co sleep and in the past week or so, the sleep just isn't happening.  Samantha is so darn wiggly.  She doesn't wake up but she is squirming all over the place and just generally very restless.  I am so groggy during the day and I can tell we need to find a new solution.  We've tried putting her in the pack n play next to the bed but she just screams bloody murder.  And now that she's pulling up, I roll over and see these little eyes peeking over at me and she's just covered in tears.  It breaks my heart and inevitably she ends up in bed with me again.  It's a vicious cycle.

This morning after breakfast, Chris lowered Samantha's crib so we could get back to Project: Samantha Sleeps in Her Crib.  Day one wasn't stellar, but I *kinda* made an effort, lol.  We did nap one right after the mattress was lowered.  She fell asleep rather quickly but only slept for 30 minutes.  Once she woke up she played quietly in her crib for about 20 minutes until Chris went to get her.  We attempted to put her to sleep in her swing (where she's used to napping) but had no luck so I played with her for a while.  After I fed her, I put her down for a second nap around 1:00.  She cried and wouldn't let me leave her side.  I had to physically have my hand on her or else she would completely lose it.  Finally she let me at least sit in her glider and after a bit she did fall asleep.  I waited a few minutes and snuck out and watched her on the monitor.  She woke up after 45 minutes and was not happy.  She woke up screaming and nothing could console her.  I attempted to get her back to sleep in her crib to no avail.  I could tell she was exhausted so I gave in and put her in her swing.  She immediately fell asleep and slept for around 2 hours.  Once up again we played hard, ate dinner, and then got ready for bed.  We don't really have a "routine" per say so I decided to try one.  I fed her, took her into her room, we read stories, and I put her into bed.  Yeah...that didn't work.  She screamed and screamed for 30 minutes.  I don't mean whimpered, but full on screaming.  I went up and not even touching her helped this time. She did NOT want that crib.  I brought her down and 30 seconds after getting in her swing she was out like a light.  Oy!

I'm not allowed to attempt the pack n play tonight because Chris has work tomorrow and apparently the rule book says, baby can't cry if daddy has to work in the morning.  So, it will be another night of no sleeping for us.  Hopefully she'll get used to this whole crib thing soon.  One thing I know, baby number two will either be side car'd or in the pack n play from day one!!  Okay who am I kidding, I will probably have to give in and cuddle to bed at least once, but I'm going to try my darnedest to not make it a habit.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Samantha and I wish a happy happy birthday to Grandpa, Babu, and Dad!!!!
Hope your day was as special as you are.

Monday, January 16, 2012

teething bling giveaway!

Over the past week, I've had the awesome opportunity to try out a teething necklace from Teething Bling by Smart Mom Jewelry!!

Samantha is now 9 1/2 months old and still mostly breast fed.  In the recent months her little hands have started wandering while she eats, mostly squishing/scratching my boobs, in my mouth, and most painfully, right up my nose!  I knew I needed to figure something out because all her little habits were starting to hurt.  Then I found Teething Bling!  They sent me a gorgeous pendant to review and I must say, it's been awesome.

Teething Bling pendants are made out of FDA approved silicone and are also BPA, PVC, phthalate, latex, and lead free.  This is awesome because who wants chemicals getting into their baby's system?  Not me!  I immediately put my necklace on once it arrived and at first Samantha was unsure of what to do with it.  However the second I handed it to her, it went straight into her mouth and she started chomping down. Now she goes for it as soon I am holding her.  It has been great for her to have a "distraction" while nursing so that she isn't clawing away at me.  The only drawback is sometimes she doesn't want to let go!!  I will attempt to put her down for a nap directly after nursing and she has such a tight grip on the pendant I have to pry it out of her little hands.  I'd say she loves it!!

Teething Bling comes in a wide variety of colors and patterns, and soon they will be launching an all new sports line featuring your favorite teams colors!!  They also carry bangles, SCENTED tween bling (how cool is that?!), and adorable onesies for baby..  Even daddies aren't left out with Smart Mom's BABE MAGNET Ties which feature a "squeaker and rattle to delight curious babies".   With something for everyone in the family Smart Mom Jewelry is a must try for everyone!!

Want to try one of these awesome pendants?  Smart Mom Jewelry has generously offered to give one of my lucky readers the chance to win a Teething Bling pendant!  This giveaway is open to US residents only and ends on 2/1/12 at 12:01 a.m. EST.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

oh peas!

Today we gave Samantha her first tastes of real table food!  I chose peas since they are pretty soft and easy to chew.  Samantha was pretty excited to try them out as you can see in the photos.  Unfortunately after she tried them, she realized they weren't as yummy as they looked!!

After all was said and done she proceeded to throw up everywhere!!  Guess the texture wasn't her friend today.  We will give it another go tomorrow!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

9 month check up

Little Miss Samantha had her 9 month check up today!!  She is doing fantastic and as the doctor said, is finally starting to get more proportionate.  Her stats are as follows:

Weight: 15 pounds 8 ounces (4%)
Length: 27 1/8 inches (26%)
Head Circumference:  16 7/8 inches (20%)

Her head was super low at the last appointment so that finally jumped up.  Her length also dropped significantly, I think she was 70th last time, lol.  Weight has stayed about the same.  (This is percentile wise, she gained 2 pounds since her 6 month)  Overall though, the doctor is very pleased with her growth and said she is doing great.  At this point, it's pretty common for babies to kind of stall since they are getting more mobile and burning more calories so I'm not too worried.

Samantha got her final HepB shot as well as a finger prick to look for anemia and other deficiencies.  We were also referred to an allergist since she had the reaction to eggs.  Because of this, we did not do the second half of her flu shot.

As always, the doctor was thrilled to see Samantha and we will be back again for her 1 year (omg!!!) check up!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

first snow

Yesterday we had our first snowfall in Northern Virginia.  I hesitate to call it a snowfall because as a Chicago native, I know what real snow is, but to a baby who has never seen snow before, anything is significant!!  There was a high of 55 degrees today so I knew the snow wouldn't last long.  As soon as we were up and showered, I decided to take Samantha out to check out the snow.  She absolutely LOVED it.  We got a snowsuit for my baby shower so that was perfect though it was kind of hard for her to move around in it.  She actually fell over once and she couldn't move at all so I just looked down to find her with a HUGE grin on her face and her eyes were just going back and forth over and over trying to see around because she couldn't move her head.  It was so cute!!  I let her taste the snow but she didn't love or hate it.  It was so much fun and I can't wait to take her out once we have some real, deep, fluffy snow!!

Her first impression was great!


LOL, you can see the smile here.

Yeah, I'd say she liked it!

Monday, January 9, 2012

final jcp update

If you remember I previously posted here and here about ordering the Step2 Patio set from JC Penny.  Well tonight we finally got the dreaded e-mail.  We weren't one of the lucky ones who will still receive the ordered patio set.  However, in order to make it up they gave us a coupon code for $50 off our next purchase of $50+.  So essentially we got a $50 gift card.  Samantha is only 9 months old now so the patio set was going to be put away for another year or two until she was big enough for it so this actually works out that we can buy something that she can use now.  Although I was quite excited for the patio set, I am happy that JC Penny is at least doing something nice for the customers who weren't lucky enough to get a table.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

happy birthday

Today is Chris's 30th birthday!!!  Hard to believe, especially considering we met when he was just 20.  We had a nice relaxing day consisting of church, me running (ok driving) to the store for a birthday cake, and hanging out at home.  I think Chris enjoyed his day so that makes me happy!

Samantha getting ready to throw back a drink in daddy's honor.  Note all the spilled water on the floor.  We're still trying to get the hang of swallowing, haha.

The yummy oreo cake!

Samantha and daddy.

Samantha helping daddy open ourhis new tv!!

Happy birthday babe!!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

moving right along

  • Today Chris scraped up all the paint splatters from the floor that resulted from painting the chalkboard wall.
  • Today I assembled the foam alphabet mats Aunt Pam gave Samantha for Christmas.
  • Today Samantha was pretty excited to test out her play area in progress!!!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


A little update on yesterday's post about the Step 2 Patio Set at JC Penny.

JC Penny posted this "statement" on their facebook page earlier today:  We apologize for the recent incorrect pricing issue for our step2 patio and shade play set Due to the pricing error we had an over abundance of orders placed. We will be honoring the price of $15 with a limit of one per customer until our stock has been depleted.  We will be contacting all customers to inform them of their order status.

Some of the comments in reply to this post astounded me.  While the majority of the people were expressing gratitude that JC Penny would be fulfilling at least some of the orders there were a handful of people angry that not ALL of them would be filled.  I can see where they're coming from, I admit I'll be a little bit upset if I don't get one, but still, at least they are doing something.  However, the comments that really baffled me were the people commenting that they COULDN'T FIND IT ON THE WEBSITE TO ORDER!!!  Do they really think that after they announced that they mispriced a $90 item for $15 that they were going to leave it up there for more people to order?!  Some people just really amaze me.

As of now, I have yet to receive an email either way regarding my order status. I'm really hoping that we placed our order early enough that we will receive our table.  Hopefully we will know soon!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

what's going to happen?

Yesterday there was a coupon blog circling around facebook, cafemom, and other sites I'm sure as well advertising how to get a Step 2 patio set for $15.  The set normally retails for $80!!  There were also two discount codes for 10% and 15% so no matter which you used, you got a great deal.  After shipping I paid $20.46, awesome!  I was so excited...until I woke up this morning.

I woke up to a comment from my sister-in-law that she saw that JC Penny had actually made a pricing error.  The set was now on the JC Penny site for $90!!!  Insane.  I have heard conflicting stories, mostly people saying that there will be e-mails going out to give us the option of either buying the set for $90 (yeah right) or canceling our order.  I have yet to see an e-mail either way and if I get said email, I'm going to be putting up a fight.  The advertised price was up all day yesterday so they had plenty of time to realize and fix their error.  I know a large amount of people that ordered the sets so they had to have known that they were selling for that price.  If it was a mistake they should have corrected it sooner, and they should uphold the incorrect price for the people that have already purchased.  My card has been charge, they already have my money.  I want my table!!!

I can tell you know, I will be fighting and I will be speaking my mind.  This isn't the first I've heard of JC Penny having more customer service and I doubt it will be the last.  I can guarantee if they don't right this situation I will seriously think twice about giving them my business again and I sure as heck will be telling everyone I know about their poor standards.

Monday, January 2, 2012

can't we catch a break?

I guess when you have kids it's just one thing after another.  Better get used to it!  Today we decided to give Samantha eggs for the first time.  The conversation before hand went a little like this:

Chris: Do you want scrambled or fried eggs for breakfast?
Me: How about scrambled?  Then you can make an extra and we can give some to Samantha.

*then I pondered it for a few minutes*

Me: On second thought, maybe we shouldn't give them to Samantha, they say they shouldn't have egg whites until they are a year old.
Chris: Oh Steph, it will be fine.
Me: Okay

So off we went and fed Samantha some scrambled eggs.  She had 5 or 6 bites and then went to play in her jumparoo.  After she jumped for a bit I nursed her and then we got ready to put her down for her nap.  Chris took her to change her diaper and immediately called me over.  She had red splotchy marks all around her lips.  I immediately called our pediatrician which no surprise, is closed for the holiday.  (We could leave an after hours message but they charge $25/call, ugh)  Thankfully, during Samantha's bout with pneumonia last week we found out that Chris' employer has a FREE 24 hour nurses hotline, so we decided to call that instead.  It was super easy and a RN called us back in a timely  manner.

Thankfully, as you can see in the picture, the reaction didn't seem to be too severe.  She had no trouble breathing, wheezing, swelling, or other symptoms.  I did find out after the fact, however, that Chris put milk in the eggs which I'm guessing may be the culprit.  My mom was severely lactose intolerant and I am as well to a lesser degree.  However for us, it's really more of an upset stomach/intestinal discomfort kind of thing.  So who knows.

I'll call the pediatrician tomorrow for a "follow up" and hopefully things will continue to be okay!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

hello 2012

Welcome to the new year!!  Last night we went to a party at my cousin Mike's house.  There were tons of people and it was so much fun to just be out.  We only ended up staying until about 9:45 because Samantha was just ready to crash.  I tried to get her to sleep there but it was just too noisy and not working out.  We came home and Samantha fell right asleep and slept until 11:59.45 when I woke her up to watch the ball drop. It was so funny, the poor girl was so exhausted her eyes kept closing and her head would flop forward and she'd sort of startle herself awake, give me a huge gummy grin and the process would repeat itself.  She was awake to see the ball drop though and she was my first kiss of the new year!!  I love my baby girl SO SO much.  We then went upstairs and cuddled off to sleep.

This morning we got up and headed to church.  I somehow convinced Chris to go to Lutheran church this week (we alternate churches every week) so that was nice.  We then came home and Chris and Samantha both took naps while I read.  This evening, and I can't believe I'm typing this...we went to 7-11 to get me a slurpee, wearing short sleeves...at 8 o'clock at night.  That's how warm it was!!  I'm still kind of in awe of how warm the weather has been this winter.  It will be interesting to see how the next few months pan out.  I'm really hoping Samantha will get to see her first snowfall before her first birthday!!

Finally, this year I decided to participate in Project 365, rather Project 366 since 2012 is a leap year.  It's doubtful that I'll post my picture here every day, but we'll see.  I will share picture one with you today though!