Archive for the ‘Koren’ Category

The Hunting Begins

Filed under: Holidays,Kaelin,Koren,Photos — Amy @ 6:50 pm

We have officially entered the Easter Season.  Did you know Easter has a season?  It seems the egg hunts start earlier every year. 

This particular occasion is our favorite annual Easter egg hunting tradition, in my parents’ neighborhood.  They always have the Easter Bunny, with whom Kaelin is eternally enamored.


Spring is Here!

Filed under: Kaelin,Koren,Photos — Amy @ 6:16 am

It’s not officially Spring in Dallas until one has logged in a trip to the Arboretum.  Check!

I’m finding that one of the challenges of having TWO kids is getting them both to look at the camera at the SAME TIME. 

I’m showing you all these so that you can fully appreciate the effort I went to in order to get this shot:

At that point, Koren was pretty much done with the pictures, but Kaelin was game for a few more…

Dr. Seuss Playhouse

Alice in Wonderland Playhouse

Alice in Wonderland Playhouse

Knowing it’s Coming Doesn’t Make it Easier

Filed under: Koren — Amy @ 9:25 pm

Dear 9-Month Sleep Regression and All the Causes Thereof,

You suck.  Please go away.

That is all.

Koren: 9 Months

Filed under: Koren,Milestones,Newsletters — Amy @ 4:45 am

NOTE: This entry posted a week ago, before I had finished writing it.  Oops.  So if you saw it and then it disappeared, that’s why.

Dear Butternut,

You may be wondering what happened to your 8 Months newsletter.  Well, son of mine, it got swallowed up in the vast and seemingly never ending black hole otherwise known as the Monster Mutant Ear Infections of Doom, which has more or less consumed us all over the last two months.

The desperate cycle of agony began when you got a double ear infection following a cold in January.  And it just never left.  Five rounds of different antibiotics later, the infection remained and you were scheduled to have tubes put in your ears.

The tubes procedure was remarkably quick and simple.  After the procedure, the doctor said we definitely made the right decision with the tubes, because apparently it was quite a mess in there.  You recovered within half an hour and even went to school without any problems that same day.  Your father and I spent the rest of the morning doing the “happy dance” because I do believe this is the start of a beautiful friendship.  I’m totally inviting your tubes to my next birthday party.

Immediately after the tubes went in, we had a series of bad nights in which you would inexplicably wake up in the wee hours of the morning and refuse to go back to sleep for two hours.  I still do not know the cause of these mysterious sleep interruptions, and I was on the verge of calling the ENT and demanding that they TAKE THE TUBES BACK because this new routine was NOT an acceptable alternative to ear infections…  And then the bad nights stopped and you returned to your previous sleep-through-the-night schedule, thank the Lord.

We can already tell you’re hearing better.  Your head snaps up at noises that otherwise would have elicited little response.  We’re hoping this will help improve your speech.

You’ve started, we think, attempting to say “Mama” and “Dada,” though “Mama” comes out as “Baba…babababababababa” and “Dada” is this odd guttural clicking sound.  We suspect the difference has to do with your inability to hear with all the fluid in your ears, so we’re hoping your pronunciation will become a little more accurate now.

You’re crawling now.  You don’t really prefer it as a method of transportation, but are willing to do it to reach something interesting, or get to someone who can carry you the rest of the way.  You’re pulling up on everything you can reach now, which makes me nervous because we have a lot of wooden tables, with sharp corners, and you are not the most cautious child.  Actually, you are downright fearless and would go diving over the edge of a chair or off a bed in an attempt to jump to another piece of furniture, if given half the chance.  I have a feeling that the first major lesson you will learn the hard way is that YOU ARE, IN FACT, NOT A FLYING SQUIRREL.  Sorry to be the one to break that to you.

You also have a knack for getting yourself hopelessly caught inside the coffee tables.

You are starting to let go once you have achieved maximum pull-up height and stand for a wobbly 5 seconds or so before either plopping down on your bum to try again, or crashing forward into whatever you were holding onto and wailing furiously.

One of your favorite activities, and one that consistently buys me at least 5-10 minutes of time, is sitting down with a diaper bag or bucket of toys, and pulling everything out of it.  You are a very hands-on kid and like to hold and examine and chew on everything you can possibly reach.  It consistently amazes me how someone with 10” arms can reach anything within a 3-foot radius.  Especially at restaurants, so CAN YOU PLEASE STOP IT WITH THE GRABBY-GRABBY MY SALAD IS NOT THAT INTERESTING HOW THE HECK DID YOU REACH THAT KNIFE LET GO OF THAT THIS MINUTE OR I’LL STRAP YOU TO THE TABLE LEG GIVE ME BACK MY STRAW.

You’re eating well now, though you continue to reject most vegetables.  Any object found on the floor goes straight into your mouth, yet turn your nose up at anything that resembles peas or squash.  Obviously I need to start rubbing my shoes in your food before offering it to you. 

You do, however, love fruit smoothies.  A piece of pureed fruit is fine, but if it has 2 or, even better, 3 DIFFERENT kinds of fruit mixed together, you will gobble down twice your normal meal portion.  Also, you’re really into those little dissolve-in-your-mouth rice snacks, to the extent that you will voluntarily sit STILL for longer than 30 seconds while stuffing them into your mouth.  These little rice snacks have saved the day a number of times, particularly in restaurants and on shopping trips.

As for sitting still otherwise, this is not a concept you’re familiar with.  Son, you NEVER stop moving.  You want to stand when you’re sitting, crawl when you’re standing, spin around when you’re crawling, and do cartwheels on the changing table as soon as I’ve stripped off your diaper.  Those little straps on the changing table?  You laugh and scoff at their futile attempts to restrain you.

You may notice that all the pictures from this newsletter come from a single photo “shoot,” despite the fact that there has been a 2-month gap in pictures.  Frankly, there is a direct inverse correlation between photo ops and the amount of sick going on around here, and the past two months have been a doozy.

One thing we are enjoying lately though, is your endless variety of expressions.  You often hear phrases like, “That’s a Jens expression” or “That’s a Papa face” or “Somebody looks like Mama” – it appears you have inherited a nice variety of expressive genes, which you put to good use on a regular basis. 


Filed under: Koren — Amy @ 6:26 pm

The procedure went really, really well – thank you for your thoughts and prayers.  The whole thing took about 8 minutes and while Koren was disoriented when he came out of the anesthesia, he recovered quickly and even went to school today without any problems.  Looks like we’re on the sunny road to recovery!

Filling Space

Filed under: Blogging,Koren,Marriage,Parenting — Amy @ 7:21 pm

I know it’s been a little quiet around here lately.  I don’t like that.  Because as much as I love and adore you beautiful people and it warms my heart to read your caring and funny comments, the truth is that I do this blogging thing for me. 

For my own ridiculously deficient memory so that later I can look back and relive all those moments I would otherwise have forgotten.

For all those nostalgic moments when I see my kids growing up entirely too fast and wish I could hold onto those pieces of their youth just a little tighter, for just a little longer.

And for my children, so that when they’re older they can look back and see what it was like to be their mother – the milestones, the incredible highs, and yes, even the lows.

So when I don’t get around to posting frequently, it amounts to lost time.  A wider gap that will probably never be filled in. 

It’s not that every moment needs to be chronicled – I’m not under the illusion that our lives are that important or interesting.  But I find that a lot of the moments I treasure in retrospect are not necessarily things I think are that momentous at the time.

[insert subject change]

I took Koren to the ENT today, and it looks as though our dear little boy will be getting tubes.  This has been a long time coming and can’t happen soon enough, IMHO.  He’s been on a steady stream of antibiotics since January, which bothers me on a couple of levels – not the least of which being that they haven’t actually helped.  He STILL has ear infections.  Because antibiotics just keep bacteria at bay, but they don’t help the root of the problem, which is the mass of fluid buildup that he just can’t get rid of.

He has made some improvement over the last week after a particularly strong dose of antibiotics (the shots, I don’t recall what they’re called), and he is no longer doing the incessant Nazgul shriek that had me clawing at my own ears.  And despite the still-infected ears, he’s a generally happy little guy, which tells you that they must have been REALLY painful before (“puss” is not a term you want to hear when the doctor is describing your child’s inner ear).

So on that front, it looks like we’re heading toward the light at the end of the tunnel.  And not a moment too soon.

All in all, the timing of the ear infections was pretty rotten because we had JUST gotten him to start sleeping through the night.  But with ear infections and illness, teething, crawling and the general 8-Month Sleep Regression upon us, it pretty much created the perfect storm of CRAP NIGHTS.  As in, Child Can’t Sleep AT ALL Unless Mom is Holding Him in the Rocking Chair nights.

There is nothing that throws my own frailty in my face like losing sleep.  I mean seriously, I know people who are dealing with cancer, ailing parents, financial horrors, and children diagnosed with debilitating diseases.  And here I am, crippled into a sobbing nervous wreck because ONE of my otherwise healthy children has an ear infection and I’ve lost some sleep.

Thankfully, I have a pretty stellar husband who, when I finally asked for some help because I could not handle another night of it without throwing myself down the stairs, took over and let me get a full night in peace.  I woke up a new person, with a clear head and a greater appreciation for this partnership called marriage.

The sleeping thing?  It’s still not great, but it’s getting better.  As I type this, Koren has been asleep in his own bed without assistance for almost 3 hours.  And now I’m going to shut up about it before I jinx it and mess up a possible night’s sleep.  Ciao!

Eghad!  He Moves!

Filed under: Koren,Milestones — Amy @ 7:04 pm

Yes, that’s right.  Koren is officially crawling.  Which means we are all officially doomed.

He’s still kind of learning, so it’s not easy for him yet – but put a bottle or some equally enticing motivator in front of him, and he figures it out really fast.

Because I Enjoy This Sort of Thing

Filed under: Kaelin,Koren,Photos — Amy @ 11:33 am

Full Tummy, Sleepy Baby

Filed under: Koren — Amy @ 3:01 am

2/3 of a nectarine.  Several bites of scrambled eggs.  1/2 a container of yogurt.  A few bites of something called “turkey dinner” that comes in a jar.  An entire banana.  An 8-oz bottle of formula.

That was my son’s dinner, eaten over the course of an hour.  I’m pretty sure he ate more than I did.  And he has a stomach the size of a golf ball.

Also, I’m pretty sure that he wouldn’t have woken up at all last night if he hadn’t had that leaky diaper.

Maybe his reluctance to sleep through the night has less to do with habits or stubbornness or neediness… and more to do with the idea that perhaps we just haven’t been feeding this kid enough?

Koren: 7 Months

Filed under: Koren,Newsletters,Photos — Amy @ 11:43 am

Dear Squirmy Wormy,

You turned 7 months old a week ago.  I didn’t do a newsletter for your 6th month because honestly, it didn’t seem that you had changed all that much since the last newsletter.

That is not the case this time.

In the last month you have hit so many milestones, it’s hard to keep up with them all.

After months of ravenously chewing on everything in sight, you finally broke in your first teeth.  Your right bottom one came in first, with the left one following close behind.  That hasn’t stopped the drooling or the chewing, but you are no longer allowed to chew on fingers.  Your teeth?  They are very sharp. I think I still have indentions in my thumb.

You also had your first Christmas, and have enjoyed your new toys about as much as any 6-month-old can. 

You’re getting closer to sleeping through the night, an idea which I like to hold and pet and dream of, and which often has me maniacally giggling to myself as I walk through the house in a sleep-deprived stupor.  I even had a few nights of uninterrupted sleep and I started to get hopeful…

And then you got sick and it all went downhill.  Your first fever.  Your first croupy cough.  Your first ear infection.  I guess I should have told you that there are SOME milestones you are strongly encouraged to skip altogether.

The good news is that, unlike your sister, you will voluntarily take medicine without any qualms.  In fact, an added bonus was that when Kaelin predictably caught your fever, we even convinced her to take some Tylenol by telling her, “Koren likes it.”  That is the first time IN HER LIFE that she has taken medicine without being held down and force-fed.

You’re finally eating solid foods now.  Voluntarily.  Without the wailing and screaming as though I’m stuffing them in your ear.

Apparently the trick is to give you real, fresh food – instead of the kind that comes in jars.  My Magic Bullet mini-blender came just in time and we use it daily for whipping up a tasty little baby meal in a snap. 

You really like bananas.  The other day, you managed to eat an entire banana, followed by a full 7 oz bottle – for someone with a stomach the size of his fist, that seems to defy the laws of physics.  Applesauce, plums and pears are also quite popular.  Creamy mashed potatos are the BOMB. Cottage cheese is good in small quantities.  Sweet potatos are NOT ok.  The jury is stll out on yogurt and most other vegetables.

We’re trying to figure out whether you’ve yet outgrown your sensitivity to milk.  We’ve introduced dairy formula in small doses mixed into your soy formula, and we’ve given you small tastes of things like cottage cheese and yogurt.  There’s no immediate reaction and it’s always difficult to tell if a little fussiness 3 hours down the road is due to sleepiness, hunger or a reaction to something you ate.

You’re not crawling yet, a fact that really just pisses you off most of the time.  YOU REALLY WANT TO.  You frequently go from sitting to laying on your tummy in an attempt to reach something.  You can get up on all fours and maneuver around, but thusfar have only succeeded in moving BACKWARDS… away from the object you’re trying to reach.  This does not do wonders for your temper and you certainly let us know the extent of your displeasure.

You’re still fascinated by your sister, and she can bring a smile to your face faster than anyone else around.

Your favorite TV program is still Football, but you also like our History Chanel documentary dates.

Your happy little face is an instant high for anyone around.  You can woo any stranger with your smile, and your little round cheeks are positively edible.

Most of the time, you are a pretty happy little guy.  You’re very affectionate.  You love being kissed and poked and tickled (you’re very ticklish).  You’re also a super hugger.  Common mortals are powerless against the force of your monster hugs.

With each month and every milestone, you become more of a little boy and less of a baby.  And more fun.  2009 is going to be a very eventful year for you and we’re looking forward to every minute of it.

Especially the part where you sleep through the night.


Wishing it was Just Yellow Cottage Cheese

Filed under: Koren,Parenting,Peaves — Amy @ 10:51 pm

Today (well technically, yesterday) I came dangerously close to hurling poopy diapers at a couple of old ladies.

It was one of those days.  The weather was horrid, and school was delayed, but Koren’s doctor appointment wasn’t, so I had to bring Kaelin to the appointment which was sort of bad because if you’ve met my daughter you know I can’t have a conversation with Kaelin in the room without telling her to be quiet 523,423,456 times. 

We spent 45 minutes trying to drive a distance that should have taken 10 minutes because Texas drivers tend to FREAK OUT because OMG IT’S COLD OUTSIDE WE DON’T KNOW HOW TO DRIVE WHEN IT’S COLD AAAAAGGGGHHHH and the doctor’s office couldn’t wait on us, so after we had suffered through the entire drive (seriously, 5 mph down a dry road) they called to tell me I had to reschedule the appointment.

Finding myself with an hour to kill in 20° weather with 2 kids in the car and nowhere to go, we decided to stop for bagels before Kaelin’s school started.  I opened the car door and immediately found myself flat on my back in the iced-over parking lot. 

The kids perked up in the bagel shop, evidently not nearly as scarred from the wasted morning as I was, and both were in a good mood in the warmth of the shop.  Such a good mood, in fact, that I had to take them out because they were laughing at each other so loudly that it was causing a disturbance.

I had managed to snag a same-day rescheduled appointment for Koren, so we again tried the trek to the doctor’s office after we dropped Kaelin off at school.  Fortunately, we were closer that time.  The appointment went pretty well except…

Koren has been suffering from a bout of diabolical mutant diarrhea which renders all diapers and attempts at containment useless.  Apparently, it’s been going around and it sounds like he got it from school.  It shoots immediately out the back of the diaper and soaks through his clothing and anything else within a 5-foot radius.  Consequently, we have all been undergoing multiple clothing changes per day.

We finished the appointment and he got his shots and I was doing the post-trauma hold and comfort.  And that’s when I heard it.  Then I felt it.  It was monumental.  It was suddenly everywhere, on everything.  PEOPLE, THE CHILD HAD POOP IN HIS ARM PITS.  I even had to change his socks.  Except, I didn’t have any extra socks because for some reason when I think “diaper change” it doesn’t occur to me that he will poop in his socks.

I spent 15 minutes in the tiny exam room trying to clean runny yellow cottage cheese off every body part and surface I could with the pitiful number of wipes I had available.  Koren’s doctor’s office makes you take dirty diapers with you instead of throwing them away in the office, so guess how excited I was to find out I was on my last disposable diaper baggie.

When I finally finished, I exited, lugging my very heavy baby, a giant baggie full of nasty, a diaper stuffed with poopy laundry, and my personal belongings out the door.

…Which is where I ran into two older women who saw fit to inform me that it was COLD OUTSIDE and give me grief about the fact that my baby needed a blanket in this weather.  They continued the conversation between themselves as I left.  Jesus saw me mentally giving them the finger.

I still had errands to run and couldn’t drop Koren off at Mother’s Day Out in his current condition, so he had to come with me, which meant a trip to Babies R Us to restock supplies.  My poor best friend happened to call while I was huffing around the store, and was (along with the other customers) subjected to a rant about I QUIT, I’M DONE, This is the WORST! DAY! EVER! and OMG TWENTY FIVE DOLLARS FOR A BABY BLANKET, AT WHAT POINT DID I LAND ON PLANET INSANE?

I think it might be a while before she calls me again.

When we got home, Koren spent some time on the poop mat.  And this is a testament to the severity of our situation:  People, we have a POOP MAT, which is where he gets to spend a few minutes in his diaper after every bottle until we hear the inevitable explosion.  It’s even better in the middle of the night – and it ALWAYS happens in the middle of the night.  If this thing doesn’t clear itself up in a day or two, I’m going to start entertaining thoughts of throwing myself down the stairs.

Plz send wipees.  And chocolate. kthxbai.


Filed under: Koren,Milestones,Photos — Amy @ 8:10 pm

Mama is funny.

Dog is funny.

Sister is funny.

Sister is very, very funny.

About Me

Hi. I'm Amy. I started this website in 2005 as a place to deposit my journal and photos. It has gone through a few incarnations and masquerades as a family site, but since I'm the only one who contributes to it, it's really all about ME, ME, ME.

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