4th Birthday Photo Session

4th Birthday Photo Session

Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Greatest Gift

As I scramble to get us settled back into our daily life, I can't help but pause a moment to reflect on our greatest gift.  I apologize for not making time to write a simple Thank You! card.  I still owe a friend one of those from last March... eventually, I will get that done!  In any case, our greatest gift is having the gift that is Ginga.  She is by far the best step-Mom ever!  Thank you Ginga for all you do.  From taking care of Mr. B. to handling Andi with perfection -- jumping in and just doing!  You are someone I aspire to be more like -- with your ability to bring out the best in everyone around you.  You are an amazing person and we all agree that you're the greatest gift to happen to us in a really, really long time. 

Andi just blew you a kiss!

We love you~

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Bean-filled Christmas

Andi has had a wonderful, puke-free (so far) Christmas!  She was given a gorgeous new dress by Uncle Carrol & Aunt Lynda.  After her nap, we got her dressed up and we're supposed to be going to 'Tacky Town' soon.  Montgomery's block of Christmas trees lights!  Here's Andi snapping her diva-like demands:

The other night, we went to Steve & Samye's for dinner where Andi met a new friend, Molly.  Andi loved Molly!

...and Molly loved Andi!

She is still fighting the cold.  She's been kind enough to share it with the rest of us!  It's a doozy of a cold too.  Want it?   You can certainly have mine!!! 

Yesterday, the boys and I went out and played a round of golf.  It was about 60 degrees and bright sunny skies.  So, I actually got a bit of a sunburn.  No joke.

It's been a very nice Christmas.  Despite us all being under the weather, this week has flown by. It is odd that we'll soon be on a flight home and back to reality.  Boo. Hiss.

So, tis the season of getting together with friends and family, being together and being thankful.  Our hearts are full, and our noses are runny. This Christmas was much more fun to watch Andi interact with gifts. 
Merry Christmas everyone! ...Andi just puked!


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Catching Up With A Traveling Bean...

Before we left for Alabama, I dropped Andi's crib and went downstairs to get the load of laundry.  I came back upstairs and peaked in on Andi.  Shocked by what I found, I dropped the basket and grabbed the camera.  This is what I found:

We've made some changes to her formula and started out gradual.  Going from 30 cal. Peptamen Jr. to a mixture with Peptamen Jr. 1.5 to make it higher calorie.  It started out okay, but as the recipe got a little heavier, her body started to rebel. The 1.5 makes her gassier, and she has responded by barfing. I've had to result to going back to a mild mixture of the two, adding a ton of water, and venting the air out of her tummy.

We flew to Alabama the other day, first class.  However, our second flight, although short, only offers coach seats.  Where not only are your knees pressed up against the seat in front of you, having a squirmy worm on your lap, isn't very cozy.  Andi apparently didn't like coach class, and promptly threw up.  Most of which I caught with my shirt.  Such a treat for all!

As an extra added bonus, Andi came down with a cold.  We all seem to be fighting it off now.  TREAT!  So, as we fill the washing machine with our Peptamen covered clothes, we're filling the garbage can with piles of Kleenex.  JOY! 

And just so I don't sound like such a whiner, Andi is having a great time with Ginga, Poppa B, Unkle Chris (who taught her the finger move from 'The Shining' - 'redrum!') and the countless stream of friends and family who have raced over to see her.  She's soaking up all the attention with glee!  As we approach Christmas, with the door wide open and the a/c on... (it's been up to 77 degrees here!), we are hoping for a happy, healthy Christmas!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Soaring Heart

Maybe I should whine more often.  Just when I least expect it, this kid blows me away.  Last night, after a very rare date night, Daddy Bean and I retired to bed to watch a little SNL, tummies more than full.  We were watching Katy Perry do her thang, and behold, startled, I look to my left and my little monkey is peering at me over the ledge of her playpen sleeper.  Holding onto the railing for dear life, she's standing in her crib.  Whoa!  We laughed, and joined each other in a chorus of 'oh sh*t!'  while still cheering on our girl.  Today, she broke out a few new tricks, have us both cheering and scared to death!

First of all, Andi really wanted one of her books contained by her toy box.  I was baking a ridiculous amount of cookies, Daddy Bean conjured me out of the kitchen to find this:

Girl loves her books!

Later in the day, I was trying to get her to take a nap, while continuing to bake a ridiculous amount of cookies, I look in on my girl to find her peering back at me. 

She got down and I watched her get back up again, repeatedly.  Time and time again, she wants to get up and see what's going on outside the four walls of her crib.

I have no idea what to do when she wants to stand in this crib.  I am scared to death at the mere thought.

So, a little whining on my part, and a lot of action on Andi's part to slap me back into shape.  All sending my heart soaring and reigniting my resolve.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Venting The Heart

My mood is such that this post might be a bit of a downer.  I really try to keep things positive, because, really ... we have so much to celebrate.  However, some days are hard and there aren't many outlets to share those emotions.  Yesterday, we met our OT at the baby play gym time at the community center down the street.  The gym is full of padded mats, padded blocks, plastic toys, balls galore, plastic bikes, trampolines, it's all decked out.  There were many babies there sitting, crawling, standing, walking with help.  It was amazing to see what all these kids were doing, all of them much younger than Andi. Andi hasn't been around many kids, so it was a lot of fun for her to roll up over to some kids and try to touch them.  She was really intrigued by the others, and was rather engaged.  She insisted on being on her back, because for her, that's home base.  That's where she's most comfortable.  She'd try to touch their noses, or reach out to them. It was rather cute.  She did really good and we had a really great workout. We tried a variety of toys and objects, and her OT thought it would be a good place to challenge and advance her, in addition to working on socializing.  My thought was that because she likes to mimic so much, it would likely benefit her to see what other kids are doing, sitting, crawling, walking, as she's likely to learn quicker from watching others.  But, honestly, for me, it was really hard to see how far behind she is.  I know it won't always be like that, but I also don't always have my suit of armor on, to protect my heart from seeing, feeling and worrying.  It's hard sometimes. 

I allow myself to pause for a moment, have a good cry, and then go back to charging forward - upward and onward.  In that moment, I get to let go of my hurt for her, how hard she has had it.  I let go of my wonder of what I did wrong, or why she has these obstacles to overcome.  I purge the anger, the sadness, the worry, frustration over puking or non-stop issues, the pent up emotions.  In that moment, I have to get rid of as much of it as I can, so it allows me to be more engaged, more connected, more present in the most important thing in my life - Andi.  She's come so far, but, every once in awhile I have to admit and grieve for how behind she is...  I feel guilty admitting that, but, like I said, once I let it go, I can charge onward, and work to getting her stronger.  Kids are resilient, adults aren't.  Well, sometimes, but not always.  Therefore, like venting air out of her stomach, sometimes I have to vent my heart and its pent up emotions.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Holiday Cheer

So far this holiday season, we've been to the Grotto, froze at the Zoo Lights, and Santa at the Macy's downtown.