Friday, November 25, 2011

Gobble, gobble, gobble!

Yesterday was Drew's first Thanksgiving! We spent the day with Bill's family, which was so fun. It was my first time being away from my mom's home cooking for Thanksgiving, so I didn't know what to expect. What a feast we had! Drew got to sample all sorts of yummy things: cheese and crackers, turkey, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, corn bread, cheesecake, jello... we were all stuffed afterward!

Serious little turkey
He has no idea how much fun he's about to have
 It was so nice to see Bill's family. Everyone commented on how big Drew is getting and how they can't believe that he'll be 1 in two months. He had so much fun being passed around and Grandma Pantuso kept him close to her so that mommy and daddy could relax and enjoy themselves. He even took a nice long nap, which was so appreciated since he was bound to be off his schedule. By the end of the night, everyone was surprised that he was so well behaved and so happy the entire time.

Grandma Pantuso's little buddy

Yum! Mashed potatoes! 

So thankful for a break!

Playing piano with Bill's Uncle Joe

Thankful for our little family

Drew (almost 10 months old) and Domynic (4 months old)

I just couldn't be more thankful for this little guy. He brings joy to everyone he comes in contact with!

Thankful to be Drew's mommy :)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

9 month pics & well (sick) visit

This past weekend we took Drew for his 9 month pictures. We went to Portrait Innovations again because we absolutely loved his 6 month session. Our experience this time was different, but good. First, they were SO busy. Everyone and I mean EVERYONE was there getting Christmas pictures taken. Poor Drew, he was so overstimulated! There were kids everywhere! 

By the time we started his session, Drew was checked out. He was fussy and just wanted to be clingy with me. We did get some good fall shots and some cute Christmas shots, so overall, I was happy. He's such a photogenic kid and he just wins the hearts of everyone he comes in contact with. 

I'm not posting the Christmas photos until it's closer to Christmas though! I'm just not in holiday mode yet! :)

Today, Drew was scheduled for his 9 month well visit checkup. Hubs and I have been so excited to see what his official measurements are, since he's just growing like a weed. Well, true to form lately, the well visit turned into a sick visit. Last week, Drew caught pinkeye from the kids at daycare. We did the eye drops and he seemed to be doing fine. This morning, hubs went in to get Drew up for the day and his left eye was almost completely swollen shut. He looked like he had been in a fight! So, I called the pediatrician (who is probably tired of seeing the Pantuso family) and he said to bring him in earlier. 

Turns out the swollen eye was a result of the pinkeye and so back on another oral antibiotic he goes! 

Other than that, he seems to be doing great. He's growing and developing well, and the pediatrician thinks we'll have a walker on our hands soon. 

Weight:  23.2 lbs (75th percentile)
Length: 30 inches (90th percentile)
Head circumference: 20 inches (off the charts due to his big brain- LOL!)
Weight to length ratio: 60th percentile

Drew has 4 little teeth now and is crawling all over the place. It's finally time to baby-proof the house, as Drew seems ultra-interested in electrical outlets and things that he shouldn't have. He's pulling up on everything and will stand and play with his toys. He loves food and will try just about anything. We're so excited for his first Thanksgiving next week. He's at such a fun age right now. I just love watching him develop and I feel like I am seeing the world through new eyes when I am with him. 

Mommy's date at the middle school dance


Big boy playing with his toys

Poor swollen eye (look at those teeth, though!)

Saturday, October 29, 2011

9 months and it feels like a blink!

I say it every time I write a new blog, but I just cannot believe that our little guy is 9 months old already! Hubs and I look at each other every day and say, "How did he get so big?!?" It seems like everything is happening at once these days. Just within the past week he turned 9 months, cut his first two teeth, and started crawling! We feel like we've been waiting for the latter of the two to happen for a long time now.

9 months old (10-27-11)
It seems like Drew has been teething since he was about 4 months old. The pediatrician kept telling us the "nubs" were there, but there were never any teeth. Finally, two weekends ago, Drew was gumming on my hand. I didn't feel any teeth, but he pinched me SO hard with his gums that my hand bruised! I knew those little buggers had to be coming in soon. Sure enough, last week, he put my finger in his mouth and I was greeted with the sharp little poke of a bottom tooth. His gums are sensitive, so he won't let me touch his mouth to look. We have to wait for big smiles or a good laugh to see those pearly whites. I'm not sure how long it takes for the teeth to come in all the way, but it sure will be interesting to see what he looks like with teeth.
It's hard to see, but there are 2 little white chompers coming in!
Drew has also started crawling (finally!!!). We've loved having him stationary, but seeing all the other babies at daycare crawling really made me want Drew to start moving too. He's so big for his age, that his size plays into it.... especially that big head! It is so hard for him to pick that noggin up and hold it while crawling. I don't blame him for not wanting to try until absolutely necessary! He's still in the "novice" stage, where it's a mixture of army crawling on his belly to crawling on all fours. He gets tired easily and hasn't figured out how to return to a sitting position after he's done. Usually, he'll just stop and flop himself down on the floor, whimpering for someone to help him out.

On the move!

We've had to take Drew to the doctor a few times in the last month. He was on breathing treatments for bronchiolitus (baby bronchitis) and he's on an antibiotic now for an ear infection. He's so mellow and happy though, you'd never know he was sick unless he was running a temp. When we took him to the pediatrician, he weighed in at 22 pounds. What a big boy! Needless to say, he's graduated from 9 month clothes to 12 month clothes. Hopefully he doesn't keep this growth pattern up, or else he might become the Hulk!

Last time, I wrote about my love/hate relationship with daycare. Even though Drew is exposed to all kinds of germs, we are so happy we put him in daycare. I think it is so good for him socially. All of the teachers love him, even the ones that don't run his classroom. People I don't even know say hi to him and give him a squeeze as we're coming or going. He's definitely loved! Hubs and I love watching him with the other babies, too. They are so curious about each other, grabbing each others faces and laughing at each other. It really is cute.

It's so fun having a 9 month old. Drew has the best personality and we can take him anywhere. It's also fun taking him to restaurants because now he can eat some "real" food. It cracks us up to see his facial expressions when he tries new foods. He's tried scrambled eggs and toast, cheese, noodles, crackers, melon, apple, chicken... he loves it all! I don't think we have a picky eater on our hands.

                                                 Funny video of Drew laughing at Daddy

We're also so excited for the holidays with our little one. I keep telling Bill, "I can't wait for Christmas!". He just looks at me like I'm crazy and tells me to simmer down. With Halloween coming up, we can't wait for our little monkey to help us hand out candy to the trick-or-treaters. I couldn't resist buying him a costume for his first Halloween.
Monkey baby! 
It's just so fun seeing him get excited about things and to see his personality shine through. He laughs at the funniest things and is quickly becoming a "mama's boy". He reaches out his arms when he wants me to pick him up and smiles when I walk in the room (and whines when I walk out!). It truly is a joy being Drew's mommy and my life certainly would not be as fulfilling if he weren't a part of it!

Playing in his jumperoo
First time at the park (10-8-11)
Ready for Halloween! (10-28-11)

Friday, September 23, 2011

My love/hate relationship with daycare

I can't believe it's been over a month since my last baby blog. Time sure does fly!

I'm back to work now. Sweet summer vacation has ended and school is back in session. I loved having my summer with baby Drew. To me, it was like a second chance at my maternity leave... except MUCH more enjoyable! I love that hubs and I are no longer in "survival" mode with Drew. We are truly enjoying every moment with him that we can.

We decided to send Drew to daycare part-time when I went back to work. My parents can no longer watch Drew during the week and we figured that a little socialization would do him good. We researched daycare facilites in our area for a long time and went on several tours to find the right one. I kept saying that I was going on a "feeling".... that I would know which one was "the one" when I left feeling peaceful. The minute we walked into Small Wonders, I knew it was the one! It was a teacher's dream.... his classroom was so organized and all the providers seemed so caring and friendly. We ended up enrolling him for 3 days/week, with Bill's parents picking up the other two days. Drew is so happy when we pick him up from daycare. I'm so glad that he seems so happy there!

Second day of daycare- "See ya later, Mom!"

On the flip side, the bad side of daycare is the germs. Little Drew had been living in a bubble for almost 7 months before going to daycare. His second day there, they called me to say he had a fever and needed to be picked up. I had a feeling it wouldn't take long for him to pick up someone else's "ickies"! So now, we can say that we've dealt with his first cold. A baby with a fever is never a fun thing. I hated seeing him with no personality. He was just listless and not himself. After some infant Tylenol and some TLC, the fever broke and his personality started coming back. We noticed symptoms that were lasting longer than a week though, and after 2 weeks of sniffles and a cough, we took him to the doctor. Lo and behold, there was an underlying ear infection too. He was put on an antibiotic and we started seeing improvements. The next day, daycare called me to say he had weird rashy welts all over his bottom. Immediately, I thought it was an allergic reaction to the antibiotic. We called the pediatrician, who agreed to see Andrew the next day. When it rains, it pours! The welts ended up being a skin reaction to the antibiotic, so we were given a different antibiotic ointment to apply to the skin reaction. Wowzers! We've been so busy administering medicine to the little guy lately! We just want him to be better and healthy. Oh daycare, how I love and and loathe you at the same time!

Mommy's first day of school... coming home to a sniffly but smiley baby!
The little man of the house is almost 8 months old now. The days are passing so quickly, that sometimes I actually have to stop and think about how old he is! When we took him to the pediatrician for his ear infection, he weighed in at 21lbs 10oz. Big boy! He's wearing 9 month clothes, some of which are getting pretty tight. He's still eating really well... 30oz. of formula a day, oatmeal cereal mixed with bananas, baby yogurt (which he loves... and when he burps, it smells like blueberries for several hours after eating the, and stage 2 fruits and veggies. He still turns his nose up at the green veggies (peas and green beans), so I've started buying him the orange mixed veggies (with peas included) to trick him. So far, it's working.

We've also been experimenting with other foods too, since he's mashing foods in his jaw, almost as if he's chewing. He's tried mashed potatoes (loved), mashed banana (hated), canteloupe and watermelon (loved), yogurt melts and baby puffs (loved), and Cheerios (loved). As you can see... there's not much that this boy will not eat. He's definitely not a picky eater!

These things are great! Now, if I could only get them in my mouth....

I'm beginning to wonder if there has ever been a baby that never got teeth. This guy is still toothless! Those pearly whites are taking their time. Meanwhile, Drew is a drooling mess and has been gumming down on just about anything he can get in his mouth. The pediatrician says that the "nubs" are there. Time will tell when those little teethies pop through.

No signs of crawling yet, although he is now frequently rolling from back to tummy and from tummy to back. I attribute the difficulty crawling to his big head. The poor guy just can't lift it up long enough to get anywhere. By the time he's got his head and chest off the floor, he's so bone tired that he just flops himself back on the ground, rolls over and is done with the whole thing. We'll see if this crawling business ever gets going. He's still sleeping great, though (thank goodness!) He goes to bed at about 7 or 7:30pm each night and gets up around 6am. We've noticed the days of sleeping on his back are done. Drew is now a side and belly sleeper.

Sleeping on his tummy
These days are so fun, and now that I'm back to work, I am really cherishing my time with him. I had so many reservations about daycare- "They're going to raise my baby!", "They're going see him crawl before I do!", "He's not going to know who I am anymore!". I realized I don't have to worry about those things. When I pick him up from daycare, all the worries fade away. Drew hears my voice, looks at me, recognizes that I'm his mommy, and his whole face lights up in laughter. That's all I can ask for.

Big boy in the cart... shopping with Mommy at Target
Hangin' with Daddy on one of the last nice days of summer
Uh guys...I'm still too little for this chair!
Mommy's going to work and Drew's going to daycare!

Monday, August 15, 2011

The life of a 6 month old...

Hubs and I have been anxiously awaiting Drew's 6 month well visit with Dr. Fisher. We noticed a huge growth spurt since his 4 month visit and have been taking bets against each other as to how much the little guy weighs these days. Bill (who is a much better estimator than me) said that Drew had to weigh at least 20 pounds. I, on the other hand, was adamant that there was no way our little guy had gained over 5 pounds since his last visit, and so I erred on the side of about 18 pounds. Well, hubs was right! What a growth spurt from 4 to 6 months! 

Waiting for Dr. Jeff

4 months length:  25.5 inches (75th percentile)
6 months length:  28.5 inches (95th percentile)

4 months weight:  14.9 pounds (50th percentile)
6 months weight:  20.1 pounds (85th percentile)

4 months head circumference: 17.5 inches
6 months head circumference: 18.5 inches

We were actually happy to see that he had gained some weight, since his length to weight ratio had been very low the last few visits. Dr. Fisher assured us that Andrew is right where we need him to be and is on track to be daddy's linebacker.

We talked about milestones and again, Andrew is right where we need him to be... sitting up, reaching and grabbing for things, making eye contact, babbling, rolling over, etc. 

Dr. Fisher told us we could start incorporating a third meal if we wanted to, to get Andrew used to being at the table three times a day (like mommy and daddy!) We've already been giving him oatmeal and a fruit in the morning and a fruit/veggie in the evening, at dinnertime. We can now start incorporating a "lunch", like a baby yogurt. The doctor also told us we could start giving Andrew some soft finger foods, to get him used to touching food and putting it in his mouth (like pieces of soft sweet potato or cooked carrots). This may seem so boring to some people, but Bill and I were so excited. It's so fun to watch a little human develop. The littlest things seem so huge to us!!! 

After a quick checkup, Andrew was prounounced to be "perfect" in every way. Music to any parent's ears and just what we wanted to hear. :)

Does he look like a future linebacker?
He can fall asleep anywhere!
It's never too early to learn how to spell!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Halfway to ONE!

I can't believe Drew celebrated his half-birthday just a few days ago. What a big boy he is getting to be!

7-27-11   6 months old today! 
Drew's 6 month well visit is coming up in 2 weeks and we can't wait to see how much he's grown. I feel like he's gone through a big growth spurt within the last month or so. He's starting to get baby chub, which is so cute since he's been so lean since birth. We're not sure how much he weighs, but he just graduated to size 4 diapers and his 6 month clothes are pretty snug. He's started wearing 9 month clothes and they fit pretty well, just a little loose, which is him room to grow!!!

Look at that belly!
A few weeks ago, my in-laws came to visit and my mother-in-law was showing me some pictures of Bill and his brother, Tony, when they were babies. Drew is definitely a Pantuso, as he takes after both Bill and his brother when they were babies! One picture that Bill's mom showed me was of Tony when he was 6 months old. He was posing with half of a sheet cake for his "half birthday" party.

I loved the idea and decided that Bill and I would do the same for Andrew. I baked a funfetti cake and decorated half of it for Andrew to enjoy at his "party". He had so much fun playing with the frosting and digging his fingers into the cake. It was so funny watching him. He even managed to sneak a couple licks of the frosting, which he didn't seem too fond of (good thing!). I wanted to go all out and have him wear a party hat and a special onesie, but hubs reeled me in, telling me to save it for his "real" birthday. :)

Admiring his cake and so excited to dig in!
Sticky frosting!
Mashing his hands together
First taste not so bad
On second thought, I don't think I really like this stuff!

There are so many things that Drew is doing now that we could have never fathomed he would be doing months ago. He's in that great stage where his personality is shining and we are so enjoying him!

Things Drew likes these days:

EATING! This boy loves every kind of food we've thrown his way (with the exclusion of rice cereal, which he still detests). We've tried all the stage 1 solid foods and have just started some stage 2 foods, which he is taking down like a champ. He also has started eating oatmeal and bananas in the morning, which he loves. He is such a good eater, often opening his mouth wide and grunting as if to say, "Hurry up, mommy! Get that food in my belly!" Since we've started him on solids, we've really noticed him start to fill out in the weight department. As of about 3 weeks ago, we also started giving him formula exclusively (yay! Mommy made it 5 1/2 months breastfeeding!). He drinks about 29-33oz. each day and loves his "baba". He holds it all by himself like a big boy, even tilting it up when it is almost gone. I've also started introducing him to the sippy cup, filled with a little bit of water. He doesn't seem to understand that he has to hold it and tip it and suck differently all at the same time. When I hold it for him, he can get the water out, but otherwise he doesn't yet understand.

Open wide! 
HIS BATH! Drew loves, loves, LOVES his bath. I thought he liked it before, but lately he just squeals with enjoyment every other night when I give him a bath. He's started splashing the water with his hands and feet, and he just recently realized that it was so funny when mommy got wet from his splashes. I can't help but laugh myself because he just giggles and laughs so much when he splashes me.

Bath time= Splash time! 
HIS JUMPEROO! We debated about whether to get Drew an exersaucer or a jumper, opting for the jumper, since it was just like the exersaucer, but with jumping action. We've been putting him in it for the last few weeks and he was ok with it, but didn't really "get" it. He would play with the toys, but would get frustrated and cry, wanting to get out after only a few minutes. A few days ago, I tried him in the jumper again. All of a sudden, everything seemed to "click" into place and he just started jumping like crazy, laughing the entire time! Now, it is by far his favorite toy. It's so funny watching him jump and let out squeals of joy at the same time.

Jump, jump, jump! 
He also loves eating his fingers (no teeth yet!), riding in the car, taking strolls, being tickled, playing peek-a-boo, and sitting up and playing with his toys. Just like the jumper, all of a sudden one day he just decided he would sit up. He's so strong, bearing weight on his legs and wanting to stand on our laps or when we play on the floor. Part of me feels like he'll be standing before he crawls! He still is rolling over really well from his tummy to his back and can get about 3/4 of the way there from his back to his tummy. It is really amazing to watch him acquire these new skills. It just seems like he is a sponge, soaking up new knowledge every day!

Little stud-muffin, sitting up all by himself
Playing with his toys
Wondering why Uncle Tony is wearing his hat
With mommy and her best friend, Wendy, from high school
Having fun with Grandma Pantuso!
Holding new preemie cousin, Domynic