Monday, August 29, 2011

August 29, 2011

Charlotte to Minneapolis, "I'm crushing your head!"

The last weekend of August was a great one. We kicked off Saturday morning with a bike ride to the Mill City Farmer's Market and toured the Guthrie while we were there.

Charlotte's pink eye patch is her favorite, and the only one she chooses to wear (when given a choice between designs).

The morning was extra fun because our friends joined us. Here's their little guy sitting with Charlotte. He tried giving her hugs and kisses, but she leaned away. Maybe she'll warm up next time.
The farmer's market was pretty busy. Lots of good food for eating there and for bringing home. We hope to go back again soon.

On Sunday Charlotte took her first trip to the great Minnesota Get-Together - AKA the Minnesota State Fair. It was Patrick and my first trip to the State Fair with a toddler - an exhausting yet fun experience.

When we first arrived I realized the SD card we usually use in the camera was at home, but we were in luck! Our second SD card happened to be in the camera case, and on it were pictures of our NICU stay. I'm always blown away at how far Charlotte has come when I look at pictures from then and thought I'd share a couple here.

So tiny and cute in her first dress.

Charlotte's first bottle. Oh how hopeful we were...the end was in sight, or so we thought.

And that's enough of a flash back...

The Minnesota State Fair

Charlotte met Mr. Bubble's from a distance. She was quite fascinated with him.

Here's Daddy trying to convince her that his favorite, the goats, are nice to pet.

I think she liked the hat/head band more than the actual pigs this year.

And this picture clearly states how she felt about the geese.

All in all, it was a good day.

And the medical update.

At Charlotte's last pediatrician appointment they took finger prick blood sample to test for lead. Unfortunately it tested positive, so tonight we were back to have more blood drawn. We're happy to be back home - post tears and 2 needle pokes (first try in the foot and then a successful draw from her left arm), and will hopefully know soon whether or not the lead levels warrant treatment.

Maybe the first test was a mistake.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

August 24, 2011


Another dress courtesy of cousin Genevieve

Yo Gabba Gabba in print form. This book cannot be within Charlotte's field of vision lest you have to read it repeatedly.

Charlotte's new puppet book

Charlotte's new tricycle

Charlotte in flight.

Hanging out on the Stone Arch Bridge

Working on her ride.

The new potty can wait. Let's get some use out of this box first.

Now that we're settled into the new place we've been able get out enjoy the rapidly dwindling summer.

Two weekends ago we wrapped up Charlotte's birthday celebrations with a trip to Grandpa and Grandma Russell's and a visit from Grandpa and Grandma Distad. Charlotte loved all the attention. It also appears that she is beginning to understand what presents are all about so Christmas should be interesting.

Charlotte is starting to act her age in many respects. The most challenging is the tendency to "tantrum" at the drop of a hat. Bedtime has turned into an hour long affair with much screaming and gnashing of (baby) teeth.

We've resorted to trying to sap a little of her energy by working her pretty hard. This past weekend we hiked around the Stone Arch Bridge in Minneapolis and spent some quality time at the playground.

At Charlotte's 2-year well child pediatrician appointment tonight she measured 22lbs 9oz (5th percentile) and 32.25" tall (11th percentile).

Thursday, August 11, 2011

August 11, 2011

Today was an exciting day for appointments. We started off with a visit to the Ophthalmologist, and got great news. Charlotte is using both of her eyes much more evenly than she was 3 months ago, so the stronger lens in her right eye is helping! The doctor wants us to patch her eye for a minimum of 2-3 hours/day (the more the better) to force her brain to use the weaker eye.

Charlotte was quite interested in the patching concept and asked to have one put on while we were still in the doctor's office. It helped that Patrick wore one our of the clinic as well. Her doctor was quite impressed with this. Here are a couple of photos of Charlotte after we got home:

We ordered some fun eye patches online from a great website recommended by our doctor: She also told us about Ortopad, which is a site that has cloth patches to go over her glasses. If she reacts poorly to the adhesive we might try those, but there's a risk that she'll be able to look around the patch, reducing the benefit of wearing the patch.

Appointment number 2 of the day was to the pediatric rehabilitation clinic where we saw a new speech therapist. We've been pretty disappointed with the feeding/speech therapy Charlotte has received since our move to Minnesota, but we felt much better after leaving today. Her first appointment was in April and we never received the promised 6 week follow-up phone call. We finally got a second appointment for today, but now we have monthly appointments scheduled through December.

The rehab clinic is inside Amplatz Children's Hospital which reminded us of Children's Hospital of Wisconsin. It made me feel a little homesick for a place with which we were all too familiar. Although we never wanted to be there we had a very positive experience, and I'm hopeful we'll feel just as at home at Amplatz soon. Or Charlotte could eat and we'll never go there again.

Appointment #3 of the day with her pediatrician was canceled because the doctor was out of the office. We went to the park with our new neighbors instead! Lots of fun.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

August 10, 2011

Happy Birthday Charlotte!

Wow, two years have passed. In some ways they've flown while in others it feels as though Charlotte has always been a part of our lives. I certainly cannot imagine life without her. Regardless of how many times I get up with her in the night my favorite part of the day is getting her out of her crib in the morning - she's always full of smiles and hugs.

Last year on this date she weighed 17 lbs 3 oz. Today she weighs 22 lbs 9 oz. According to my Google search ( kids should gain 2-5 lbs between their first and second birthday, so Charlotte is ahead of the curve!

When Charlotte was in the Marquette NICU a nurse gave me a pink beanie baby to set next to her to photograph her size. It ended up back in Houghton before her 2 month birthday, but the volunteer at the Children's Hospital of Wisconsin gift shop kindly gave me a Thanksgiving Beanie Baby to use there. It has stuck with us and tonight we took it out just for fun. Luckily she's now much larger than the beanie baby, strong enough to hug it, and opinionated enough to tell us she's not putting it down.

At daycare they made Charlotte a crown, which she loved wearing. She insisted I put it on her head before she got in her carseat and didn't take it off until she wanted to walk through my legs - the bridge just wasn't tall enough for the crown.

We've been neglectful at posting video, but here's some video of Charlotte. Her language skills are developing very quickly!

Since our last post we attended Patricks' family reunion where...

...Charlotte demonstrated her impressive pitching potential,

played with bubbles,

and got her first tattoo (temporary, that is).

We moved! With the help of about 9 amazing people it took less than 2 ours to move out of our old place and into our new. A huge thank you to those who helped us move!

After the move we had a little party for Charlotte. Here's Patrick sneakily helping Charlotte blow out her candle. Judging by her fascinated expression, the candle may have fully melted before she tried to put out the flame.

And a nice family photo in our moving apparel.

Tomorrow brings doctor appointments and this weekend more birthday celebrations. Hopefully these events will be promptly followed by blog posts.



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