Thursday, December 16, 2010

Milestone Acheived

Tonight marks the very first night in almost two years that I have put Cameron to bed without being connected to a feeding pump.  I am so very pleased about this.  And even though it wasn't the BEST eating day, he did end it well by drinking 7 oz of whole milk with Carnation Instant Breakfast mixed in for some extra calories. 

This may be my only update for a few days.  My laptop is busted beyond repair and my replacement is on its way.  I can post from my phone but it's a pain, and to post from my husband's computer is like putting someone else's shoes on... Just weird.  Obviously I have more info about the boys and their progress to write about, so bear with me and I'll post as soon as I can.

Monday, December 13, 2010

What do we want? When do we want it?

What does Cameron want?  FOOD!  And when does he want it?  NOW!

I really need to up my cooking game.  It's not enough to make kid friendly foods, I now have to make them faster and with more variety.  And ALL of it has to be high calorie, which is a real problem because even though he's eating so well there's lots and lots of leftovers.  And I swear his grilled cheese that is made with real butter on both sides and extra butter in the pan, mayo on the inside and muenster cheese and a slice of ham tastes far better than my own low calorie version.  I might as well make one for each of us right?  This will be the year that I gain back all 70lbs of pregnancy weight I lost two years ago on a dairy/lactose free diet.  *sigh*

What does Cameron eat?  Here's the list:

Ham steak
Buttered noodles (prefers rotelle shaped pasta)
Alfredo sauce on curly shapped noodles
Macaroni & Cheese (both name brand and homemade)
Ravioli (small size, only cheese and spinach for now, working on meat)
Rice with flavoring (ie. chicken & broccoli rice, cheesy rice, fried rice)
Crunchy BBQ Ranch burrito from California Tortilla (no lettuce because it's cut in long shredded strips, no beans because Mommy doesn't like them)
Chicken nuggets (prefers the Tyson dino shaped nuggets but will eat any kind as long as they are soft)
Sloppy Joe sandwiches (smoosh the bread flat and cut into small bite sized squares about thumb size)
Artichoke Flan from Wegman's (Mommy loves this too.)
Cheese pizza
Mini quiches
Mini pancakes with syrup and butter
French fries
Sweet potato fries
Potato pancakes with veggies
Veggie sticks and disks (he's not discriminate against shape)
Cheese puffs and Smart Puffs
Skinny pretzel sticks (aka. kretzels)

Stove Top Stuffing (He was rolling his eyes back in his head in ecstasy tonight when he tried it.)
Steamed carrot slices
Steamed green beans
Steamed broccoli
Mild cheddar cheese
Some kind of white cheese at a birthday party, trying to figure out what it was
Diced peaches
Mandarin oranges in syrup
Diced pears (but he's not crazy about them)
Apple (must be cut up in small chunks without skin)
Kix cereal
Cocoa Pebbles cereal (must have what Daddy is having)
Nilla Wafers
Fig Neutons
Teddy Grahams (honey only)
Goldfish crackers
Ritz Crackers
Gerber freeze dried apple, banana, strawberry
Gerber fruit twist snacks (these are a fantastic chewing exercise for kids)
Birthday cake
Chocolate chip cookies (but only the soft kind)
Brownies (no nuts)
Baked apples in cinamon
Some Greek yogurts
Scrambled egg with butter, heavy whipping creme and cheese
Toast with butter and sometimes with honey
Grilled cheese
Grilled diced ham & cheese (must be diced lunch meat because he can't pull the meat apart with his teeth yet)
Chicken & Stars soup
Entamen's Little Bite blueberry muffins
Hot Dogs
Vienna Sausages
Whole milk
Carnation Instant Breakfast
Apple & Eve juice in Punch, Berry, or Apple flavors watered down half & half

I feel like I'm forgetting something on this list.  And I'm thrilled at the diversity of the foods Cameron eats too, I owe that to the wonderful conditioning that our feeding clinic at Mt. Washington has helped us achieve.  Now I'm in constant search for some new great foods to try with him that are simple and quick to make but have lots of bang for our buck in calories.  It's a bonus if it's a food I can easily make fresh in small quantities because I end up eating leftovers or throwing much of it out because he can't eat it all and Evan refuses to touch food to his teeth.

What are your toddler's favorite foods?

Friday, December 10, 2010

Santa Came to Town

Every year Santa comes to town for a pre-Christmas tour.  He hitches a ride on the back of an enormous red fire truck and he and all his volunteer fire department buddies drive through the neighborhood.  They have flashing lights, horns, sirens and candy canes galore.  And most importantly they have Santa lit up with a big spotlight, so even the tiniest Who in Whoville can't miss him from the cozyness of their front door.  It's a toss up for which is cooler when you are a two year old with a penchant for fire engines or any vehicle with flashing lights and sirens.  I hope that Santa doesn't mind that this year he was a bit overshadowed by his mode of transportation.

I mean, the Man in Red is awesome.  But Cameron and Evan don't really understand who he is.  He's just a very nice guy with a big white beard, wearing Cameron's second favorite color (the first is pink), and he has a funny laugh that Evan likes.  They don't know exactly who he is or what he does.  They don't get who the Elf on the Shelf is despite the fact that we keep reading his story to them.  And they don't even really understand what presents are.  But they know what a fire truck is and boy is it "super cool".

Mr. Claus stopped right in front of our house tonight.  Lights a flashing, sirens full steam.  You would have thought this might freak the boys out to be so close to all this commotion.  Evan was speechless, jaw slack and eyes big as saucers.  He pointed and quietly mouthed in a soft little voice uninteligable over the noise of the trucks, "Nee-nahs! Nee-nahs!"  (Nee-nah is what a fire truck says, so that's what the boys call them even though they know they are called fire trucks.)  Cameron was yammering away, "Look Mommy! Look Mommy! You see the fire trucks?  You see the am-beh-lance?  Hi Santa on fire truck! Hi fire truck!  I love nee-nah! Look at the nee-nah Mommy!"  The volunteer fire fighters would jump off the truck and run to each family in their yard and hand out candy canes.  We gave them our donations of non-perishable foods for their food drive too.  Then we watched them slowly drive down the street.  Thankfully it was chilly, but not cold and not windy at all so we were able to stand in our yard to watch as the trucks left our street entirely.

When it became evident that the trucks were leaving us behind and not coming back Evan melted down with some hysterical crying.  He bawled in Drew's arms, then when set down on the floor of the playroom he folded himself over crying more.  Eventually he settled down into a very overtired melancholy mood, not saying too much, but I know he was thinking about the experience.

For an hour after Santa and his caravan of flashing vehicles made their way out of sight Cameron was still going on, and on, and on, and on about the Nee-nahs.  He pulled out his favorite toy, the Fisher Price Little People fire truck, the fire man and a king from another Little People's set and reenacted what he saw and heard many times over.  

I'm already enjoying this holiday season through their eyes all over again.  When they are this little every year is a whole new experience.  I'm excited to see what they think of the Christmas tree when we finally put it up.  And hopefully they will have as pleasant an experience when they finally get to meet Santa up close again this year.  

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

How Things Are Said and Done

When something is upside down, be it a kid, a dog, or an inanimate object it is always referred to as "ups-sid down baby".

When someone falls, or pretends to fall, they ask me "Are you okay?" over and over and over and over until I repeat the question back. Often our toys have great crashes and the boys ask them this question until they are righted and doing whatever toys are made to do.

Telephone calls are always important and urgent.  "Hello? Yesth? Okay. Bye."  If it's Evan then the word hello is pronounced with a French accent, "Ahllo?" Sometimes it's Elmo or Poppop calling.  Occasionally Granny calls with urgent news, to which she gets hung up on promptly lest the phone self destruct in 5 seconds.

Both boys can say their full alphabet with occasional help.  Evan can count to 13 and Cameron to 11.  And they can count backwards from 5.  When counting down you must always say "Bwast Off!"

 Cameron:  "Oh boy! I can't wait."

Cameron:  "Oh, Cah-men drive de car? Nooooo?  Oh, okay, I'll try."

Cameron:  "Mommy, get de telephone? Oh-kaaaay, Cah-men get de telephone."  This is a diversionary tactic used during meals or nap time.

Cameron knows to say "Oh-kay, see you latter Cameron.  Bye-bye, hag (have) a nice day. See you soon, Cameron."  when he's leaving or the person visiting is leaving us.  And what he means is that you are to say these things to him, and he will repeat the words over and over until you say them.

Every morning Cameron wakes up and tells me something unintelligible that ALWAYS involves a helicopter.  I have no idea what he's telling me, but he always follows his discussion with "Mommy, you see a hec-a-topter?"

Evan:  "Ah yooh oh-kay?" is said whenever he perceives himself to be hurt, roughed up, or upset in any way.  Usually said at the same time as he folds himself over in half with forehead to feet or floor, face pouting.

Evan:  Tackling my legs from the side or behind, "Aw, I wuv yoo."

Evan now calls himself Ennan or Eh-than.  It seems both boys refer to themselves in the third person. 

This week the boys finally have accepted the fact that occasionally they have to hold hands, and that it can be fun.  It started with Evan trying to get Cameron to start a game of chase.  He grabs Cameron's hand and for a few seconds they walk side by side holding hands.  It makes my heart melt to see it, even if it's nano-brief.  And then the running and squealing begins.  Yesterday during a playdate with some other boys we played Ring Around The Rosie.  All the boys in the group are delayed in some way, the unanimous common delays of the group are language and sensory issues.  At this age kids will parallel play, which is playing side by side or near each other but not interacting directly with one another.  To break this barrier you have to get them to do physical things, so playing Ring Around the Rosie is perfect because they have to hold another person's hand, they have to understand that there are rules to the game (hold hands, spin as a group in a circle, let go at a designated point, fall down), and that it's fun and repetitive for ongoing play.  But to get sensory adverse kids to hold hands is difficult to put it mildly.  But for the first time, they finally got the concept that it's okay to hold hands.  This is a good sign that we are moving toward being stroller free.  If they can hold hands, then it's slightly less likely that I will have to run in two different directions at the same time.  Mommy is looking forward to that day.

The boys new favorite thing to do is play chase with each other.  No words are involved, though if there are any it's "I'm gonna git you."  Mostly it's Evan grabbing Cameron by the collar or hand and pulling him until Cameron knows that he's supposed to chase his brother, then the shrieks and peals of laughter follow.  And it usually ends up with someone walking into a wall or door or falling on the floor, and of course the tears.  After a minute of "Are yoo okay?" they are back at it going through the kitchen and around the living room and back through the kitchen over and over and over.