Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Just Beachy

Memorial Day weekend here was crazy hot.  We came very close to 100 degrees on Sat and Sun, so we mall-ed it one day and stayed mostly home the next.  On Monday, the temp dropped back into the mid-80's so we decided to give the babies their first beach experience.  The Nugget was a more than willing tour guide. 


Our resident water baby approved.  He was mostly content to just park his bum in the shallows and splash.


Spork thought the giant sandbox was pretty awesome too.


Tater, ever cautious in the wilderness, was unimpressed with the chilly lake water and nonplussed by the expanse of sand.  She did, however, enjoy her beach tent and observing all the action from a lap.


The Nugget was wild and giggly, boldly swimming with his noodle, making new friends, and even reunited with the little boy he'd played with last Memorial Day at the same beach.  I wouldn't have recognized him in the crowd, but this kid walked right up to the Nugget and said, "Your name is Nugget, right?  We played together last year."

We left sweaty and sandy, happy for the a/c and sleeping babies on the car ride home.  All in all, we felt it was a great dry run for our upcoming weeklong beach trip!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Eczema-Free

Have I mentioned that all 3 of "my boys" are eczema-prone?  Thankfully, none of them require medication, and I've found a method to keep their itchy patches at bay.  You actually would never know now by looking at them that they have all suffered itchy red patches.  A lot of my friends have asked for tips - apparently the hard water in the area can contribute to eczema - so here they are.  It seems like a lot, but you can try one thing at a time and add others as you go.  You may only need to make one or two changes.

1.  Laundry detergent matters.  It might take some doing to find the right soap for your family, but Charlie's Soap Powder works for us.  At the very least, try going scent-free and see if that makes a difference.  Optical brighteners sometimes seem to cause a flare-up too.  On that note, try pulling your fabric softener too.  The detergent was really the key to getting the Nugget's breakouts under control.

2.  Lotion 2x/day, no matter what.  And sunscreen doesn't count.  We have had good luck with Aveeno Extra Care Moisture Cream.  I used to use California Baby Calendula Cream for a breakout, but since they've changed their formula, that doesn't work on the Nugget anymore.  The lotion was the key for Hubby and Spork.

3.  Limit baths.  If you have an eczema-prone kid, you don't want to bathe them daily.  Go every other day or every 3 days.

4.  Use a mild body wash like Earth Mama Angel Baby, Mustela, Burt's Bees, or Aveeno.  Bubble bath can be ok, but not every time.  Make sure you slather that lotion on right after a bath to lock in the moisture.

5.  Humidifier in the room at night, especially when you run the heat or A/C.

6.  Keep 'em hydrated.  The Nugget has access to a water bottle on the bottom shelf of the fridge and helps himself liberally.

7.  Omega-3 in the diet.  The Nugget flat-out refuses fish, so we give him those gummy vitamins.

Brotherhood

I've said it before, but one of the greatest blessings of adoption, especially when coupled with a long, arduous wait, is that each happy moment with your long-awaited child(ren) becomes magnified and even the hard times are eased by the knowledge in the back of your brain that truly, you are lucky, so lucky to have this child in your life.  This life, this motherhood of mine is never taken for granted.

This time around, not only were we "reborn" as parents but something new has been created.  A brotherhood.  And it's all that I could have dreamed it to be, replete with squabbles, tears, and tender moments when Spork looks at the Nugget with wonder and awe and the Nugget gently teaches his baby brother something new.



This was so worth the wait.  Two pairs of feet at the sand and water table, two pairs of hands mixing up  "razzmatazz ice cream" and searching for the shells we brought home from Florida.


 Double-extra-wide classic baby shoes earning their first scuffs of dirt.  


Purple Roos (so excited that they still make Roos!) that seem like they should be way too big for my little boy....but they're a perfect fit, which I suppose goes along with the lanky legs and knobby knees this child is suddenly sporting.


And our "bonus babe" in my arms, finally calm and collected in the great outdoors, her tiny hands busy trying to remove her strawberry sunhat and her burbling giggles ready and waiting to burst forth like sunshine slicing through the clouds.

It's such a beautiful life, and indeed, pain does beget beauty.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Eventful

Besides having Grandma and Papa here, we've had an uber-busy week.  We drove 3 hours south with Grandma, Papa, and all the kidlets packed into the minivan...


Visited with Spork's birthfamily, who were gracious enough to welcome and feed our troops a delicious dinner.  Spork and the Nugget were lucky boys to be first in the Jacuzzi for the season!  Here is Spork with his Bobby (his Mumsie's dad).


 We met Grammy and Grandpa at the children's museum, then hurried to court to finalize Spork's adoption.  Unlike the Nugget's adoption (which was a simple affair where we signed papers in the hallway with the attorney, then the judge declared us legal parents), to complete Spork's adoption, each of us had to take turns on the witness stand answering a lengthy series of questions!  Thankfully we "passed"!  We left the courthouse with one more child now bearing our last name and short one pair of tweezers confiscated by the overeager security guards.  While I'm still ticked about the tweezers, I think we got the better end of the deal.  The bailiff gave the Nugget a donut for his troubles.


We celebrated at a downtown market with fresh baked goods and piggyback rides.  Grandpa's back may be regretting this about now, but it made for great memories and a cute picture.  Had to rush Grandma and Papa to the airport and made it home just as night fell and the kids were crashing.


The next day, the Nugget said goodbye to the 4's room.  Still trying to figure out how our first baby got so ginormous.  And he wants to go back to the baby-free zone school tomorrow, so we might be in for a long summer.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Grandma and Papa Visit!




We had a very eventful week!  Grandma and Papa (Hubby's folks) came to visit and meet their new grandson (and Tater too) for the first time.  All 3 kiddos enjoyed the extra loving attention and doting that only grandparents can provide.

Highlights of the week include swimming in the hotel pool on Mothers' Day, the Nugget's end-of-school-year family picnic, and a trip to the Children's Museum.  But the quieter moments were awesome too - stories on the couch with Tater, mum-mums handed to a munching Spork, and Grandma kindly humoring the Nugget by letting him pull her around in the wagon.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Sweet Baby Jesus


The Nugget's baby doll has had a slew of names:  Dami, Noodle, Tater, and now the Nugget has informed us that he is caring for Baby Jesus (not pronounced Hey-Zeus).  It's pretty funny and irreverent when the Nugget announces that Baby Jesus has a poopy diaper.

Tonight, the Nugget started his bedtime preparations by choosing a story as always.  Then he said, "Annnnd, tonight I'm going to have a special guest, The Sheep.  I am inviting The Sheep to my bed."  (The Sheep is like a Pillow Pet but with a blanket included.  The Sheep, like all fleece/felt products unfortunate enough to be in our house is completely coated in dog hair.  I wish I could say I lint-rolled the Nugget's special guest before bed....buuuut I didn't.)

I know I've mentioned the Party in my Tummy song from YGG and how the Nugget often invites his dinner to the party.  Lately, there has been an added twist.
"Food?  It's going to be a pool party but wait, the pool is empty.  You can't jump into the pool until you hear the whistle, because you will get a very bad owie.  And when I do blow the whistle, you can jump into the soft part over here because it's safe to do but don't jump into the bottom because it is made of wood, and you will break through it, and that would be very bad. (The Nugget's tummy pool is apparently very complicated and dangerous.)  Ok, here comes the milk, it's filling the pool.  Tweet!  You can get in the pool now!"

Sweet brother moment:  The Nugget bashed his face into the door frame in his rush out the door to school this afternoon.  Many tears followed during the short car ride.  Tater cried along with him in sympathy.  Spork watched him worriedly and when the Nugget had calmed to sniffles, Spork started blowing raspberries and giggling.  I held my breath, unsure if this gaiety would be met with the usual, "It's NOT funny, Spork!" so I quickly interjected, "Spork, are you trying to cheer the Nugget up?"  The Nugget immediately brightened and said, "Yeah, now he's being my big brother!  He saw I was sad, and he's trying to make me feel better!  It's working!"