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December 2009


December 10, 2009

I spent last week without an Internet connection and now I'm busy trying to catch up with work. I apologize for my lack of posts!

Zane is doing well; he feeds himself finger food every day now (thank you, God!) and even tried feeding himself with a spoon. He took one bitefull with a spoon, then seemed satisfied to have mommy do the rest :)  He stands independently a lot now, and even takes a few steps when he's concentrating on something else and doesn't realize he's doing it. This morning, he pushed his walker around repeatedly for the first time.


We've had a series of minor accidents lately. First, I locked myself out of the house - with both kids running freely inside. Fortunately, I was able to explain to Anastasia (through the door) how to unlock the door. Whew! Then, when taking Zane out of the bathtub one morning, he slipped out of my arms. I caught him when his head was literally an inch from the side of the tub. Another whew! I think Mommy's been tired!

Then Anastasia, running down the sidewalk one day, tripped on her own feet and banged her forehead on the cement. It scared us all, and she has a large scab on her forehead, but she's fine.

Anastasia continues to have difficulties in the area of sleep. She still wakes up in the middle of the night, turns on her light and opens her door. We find her sitting in bed with her eyes open, but most of the time, if we try to talk to her, she doesn't make any sense. She appears to literally be asleep with her eyes open.

She continues to avoid sleep at all costs. She refuses to nap, and even though I give her an hour of "quiet time" during the day, by evening she's often hysterical and out of control. And yes, she goes to bed early: At 6:30 pm. It's hard on her - and us. We tried giving her over the counter allergy medication, as our pediatrician recommended, but it didn't help a bit.

Sadly, her sleep deprivation also sometimes leads to depression. She'll sit on the floor, crying for no reason, and say, "I just want to be happy!" It breaks our heart. (Giving her a little dark chocolate helps, though!) When she's sleep deprived, she also misbehaves badly, can't concentrate on her school work, and is generally miserable.

Poor kitty!


Zane uses his Tonka dump truck as a recliner every morning.


Last week, Anastasia completed her first jigsaw puzzle entirely on her own.

But here's a little funny for you: Anastasia was playing Little Red Riding Hood to her grandma's Big Bad Wolf when she turned to me and said, "Don't worry, Mommy. We're just pretending. We're not really making each other dead."

December 15, 2009

Today I took this kids' picture to include with our Christmas letter. Ugh. Why do I do these things to myself? Most of the photos turned out like this:

Here are some of the better ones:


Although Zane's taken one or two steps between pieces of furniture before, he's never walked without any aid for more than a couple steps...until last night! When he thought no one was looking, he walked from my desk to a large toy about four feet away. I applauded him, he plopped down on his bottom, looking pleased with himself, and when I asked him to walk toward me, he stood up and took two steps - then got so excited he crawled the rest of the way. Later he took about four steps for Daddy, looking quite self conscious.

He also had his first sweet yesterday: A gingerbread cookie. He wiggled and shook with excitement and couldn't cram it into his mouth fast enough. It's nice to have a child who enjoys food.

Anastasia is still exhausted - and therefore not eating well. She often tells us she doesn't like to eat and will never (ever!) sleep. I have a call in to our pediatrician, who is on vacation. I'm hopeful there might be a diagnosis for Anastasia with regards to her night waking. Or, at least, that we can find some way to help her sleep better.

December 17, 2009

I just heard back from the nurse (who'd just spoke with the doctor, who is now back from vacation). She said the doc wondered if Anastasia was having night terrors. However, after reading up on this, it doesn't quite fit, as far as I can see. Miss A. doesn't often have nightmares or cry out in the night, as if she's afraid. The bolting upright in bed, being wide-eyed and confused does fit, though. Then I read that many sleep disorders like this in children occur due to sleep deprivation.

The doc also recommended Melatonin, but forgot to give the nurse the correct dosage. At this point, I am ready to try it. Anastasia's been surviving on air, it seems, these past few days. I thought we were beyond the serious eating issues, but it's clear that when she doesn't get enough sleep, they reappear.

December 19, 2009

There was a mix-up at the pharmacy, and Anastasia's Melatonin didn't come in. But perhaps - just perhaps - we have at least a temporary fix.

When Miss A. doesn't eat well, her daddy gets pretty scared and upset. A few days ago, when she literally ate nothing but a few bites all day, he told her if she didn't eat and get enough sleep, he was going to take her to the hospital where they'd poke her with lots of needles to get food into her body. I wasn't pleased to hear him say this; for one thing, God forbid she ever needs to get IVs due to not eating and drinking enough. She'll be terrified.

But the next day, Anastasia was like a new girl. She went right to sleep at bedtime, was well behaved all day, and ate at every meal. She repeatedly told us she was eating, "just like Daddy told me to." The next day, we saw the same thing. She's a bit crankier today, but she has a cold and was over excited about Grandma coming over. For the time being, at least, she's made up her mind not to fight sleep at bedtime...so she won't have to be poked at the hospital.

Reading a bit more about night terrors, I did find it interesting they are often caused by sleep deprivation. So maybe, if we can get Anastasia to quit fighting sleep, her weird waking up in the middle of the night sleep issues will disappear, too.


Anastasia and I made her first gingerbread house yesterday. She did all the decorating (but that's my miserably-looking frosting), and she was sooooo proud. My niece bought the house kit - and the adorable apron, too.

Zane is doing well. He's getting pickier about his food; he won't eat yogurt anymore, and when I offered him cantaloupe for the first time, he seemed to find it gross. This morning, his bottle wasn't cleaned and sitting on the counter. Apparently, yesterday somebody ran off with it. I've looked high and low, but I can't find it, so I decided it's time to wean him. However, he gets angry every time I offer him milk in his sippy cup. We'll see how it goes.

But the big news is, he's walking more and more every day. Here's a video of him tottering around the house.


December 23, 2009

Anastasia and Zane are still sick with a cold. Although Zane made himself a grumpy patient the first day of this cold (I spent most of the night up with him), he's mostly over it now. I fear Anastasia's cold may be going into her chest.

I haven't tried Anastasia on the melatonin yet, either. I did finally get it from the pharmacy yesterday, but now I can't find a dispenser for 0.25 ml, her starting dose. Last night she was up several times. I'm sure that doesn't help her heal. The good news is, she continues to submit to bedtime much more than she used to.

Zane is now walking all the time, unless he wants to scoot a toy car or train across the floor. I can't believe he's already a toddler!

Here's hoping we're well for Christmas! Please pray that poor Anastasia doesn't develop bronchitis or pneumonia, like last year.


December 27, 2009

We were unable to have a big family get together for Christmas. My mom-in-law has a depressed immune system (she's a miracle survivor of ovarian cancer), and we didn't want to expose her to our family's cold. So we stayed at home for the first time ever, and my mother came over for a turkey dinner. It was relaxed and not overwhelming for the kids. We ended the day with Zane in his crib and Miss A. sitting between Mommy and Daddy while eating popcorn and watching a movie. She was in heaven.

Zane's cold, which seemed nearly gone, came back with a vengeance. He is not comfortable, and he lets everyone know it. My hubby and I both have mild colds, too.

Anastasia's cold seems completely gone, and for two of the three evenings I gave her Melatonin, she slept through the night and was a happy, basically behaved child. Then last night, she woke in the wee hours, after urinating in her bed. It's hard to say if this was caused by sleeping deeply due to the Melatonin, since she's done this a couple of times in the past. But, whatever the case, it disturbed her sleep, and today she's a disobedient, defiant, sobbing child. Sigh.


Anastasia on Christmas Eve. Left: With her first Barbie (an "I Love Lucy" doll). Right: With her doll, wearing matching nighties.



Left: Poor little snot nosed Zane, on Christmas morning. Right: The fam.

Anastasia blowing out the candle on Jesus' birthday cake.