Monday, December 29, 2008

The rest of Hanukkah

Hanukkah is over now, and we had a great time. Thursday we went to the Capitol to watch a rabbi and one of our state legislators light a menorah. We learned that this is only the second year that there's been a menorah lit at our Capitol for Hanukkah. Way to go, Texas! The Capitol had a lot going on. Dad showed me a statue commemorating (or as Mom put it, promoting Southern propaganda regarding) the Civil War, and Mom and Dad chased me on the Capitol lawn. It was nice to run and laugh in such a big field. After that, we went to 37th Street, where we saw lots of bizarre Christmas lights, including a motorcycle, lots of political messages, a zombie, and a cityscape of Austin. It was very Austin, Mom and Dad explained to me.

Last week, when I wasn't feeling great and had to eat simple things that would be easy on my tummy, we discovered that I love toast. Plain old bland toast with nothing on it. Not only do I love the way it tastes, it is fun to munch on a big piece of something larger than my face. Mom can't believe of all the yummy things she makes for me, this is one of the things I like best.

We had a lot of time to relax this weekend. Friday night my friend Clark came over with his Mom and Dad. We had a great time. After dinner we went upstairs to play with all my fun new Hanukkah toys and we laughed at and chased each other. It was great having a friend over to play with. Mom and Dad were very excited about how well I shared my stuff. They said it seems like I'll be a great big brother. I can't wait to see Clark again!

Saturday we went to Tot Shabbat, where we sang lots of fun Hanukkah and Shabbat songs, and Mom and I watched Dad donate blood. We are really proud of him. Sunday we didn't do much, but I did get to play in my sandbox and we went to one of my favorite places - the grocery store. That place gets better every time I go, it seems. This time, not only did they have samples of oranges, which I've been enjoying there all week, they gave me a red balloon when we checked out. You can see how much I liked it in this video. We also have a ton of pictures from the past few weeks.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Hanukkah is fun

Tonight is the fourth night of Hanukkah, and so far we've been having loads of fun celebrating the holiday. Sunday, the first night, we celebrated at our synagogue, where we ate latkes and lots of other yummy food and lit our menorah. I am excited to be able to walk because I was able to take advantage of all the wide open space there. I am getting pretty fast, and I kept Dad and Mom on their toes.

After successfully getting my three stitches taken out Monday (the doctor said everything looks great and is healing well), we went home for night two of Hanukkah. I ate a yummy dinner, then we lit our menorah and I got to open some presents while we listened to some Hanukkah music. I got a train set from Mom and Dad, a puzzle from Bubbe and Papa, a pirate ship from Grandma and Grandpa, and a little piano from Aunt Laurie. I had fun playing with my toys for a little bit before I had to go to bed, but we had a great time playing with them Tuesday. I hear after I went to bed, Mom and Dad had more Hanukkah fun playing dreidel.

Tuesday night was more of the same - more menorah and presents. Tonight we're going to have some homemade latkes, which will mostly be for Dad and Mom since I don't really like them (yet, Dad says). Tomorrow we're going to try to go to the State Capitol building for a menorah lighting and to eat more Hanukkah treats, including sufganiyot, and Friday some friends are coming over for more - you guessed it - latkes. I think Hanukkah is great, and I'm glad we get to celebrate for eight nights!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Cool new toys and Houston

Despite another round of throwing up Friday night, I am still feeling better after my surgery. We went to Houston this weekend to visit some friends of Dad's, and I had a good time playing with one of the other family's kids. It was a nice opportunity to try out our new car on a road trip (it did great and so did I - I slept the whole way there and almost the whole way back since Mom and Dad wisely timed the car ride to coincide with my nap time) and I got to visit a cool playground while we were there.

I've also been having fun with some new toys. Mom and Dad got a big freezer as an early Hanukkah gift from Grandma and Grandpa, but I'm the one who really lucked out because I got the box! Mom turned it into a little house for me. We put it in my big boy room and I think it's a cool hideout.

Also, my friend John moved to China a few days ago and the night before my surgery, his parents gave us a bunch of his toys, including this fantastic...get ready for it, Grandpa...tool bench! It came with a lot of fun tools and I've been having a great time whacking things with them. Peanut also got lucky because John took his sister Betsy with him when he moved, so his mom gave us a lot of her clothes for my new little sister to wear when she's born. We'll miss John, Betsy and their family, but we are looking forward to hearing about all their exciting new adventures (and thank them for giving us all this cool loot!).

Friday, December 19, 2008

Feeling better after surgery

Tuesday we picked up where we left off with the red bump on my face. First thing in the morning, we headed to a dermatologist's office. She was very nice but thought a pediatric surgeon would be able to do a better job helping me. So a few hours later we headed downtown for an appointment at the surgeon's office that she recommended.

Both the dermatologist and the nurse practitioner we saw at the surgeon's office agreed that the bump was a pyogenic granuloma that needed to come off as soon as possible. Mom and Dad had to decide whether to have it done while I was awake, in the dermatologist's office, or while I was asleep, with the surgeon. The doctors recommended doing it while I was asleep so I wouldn't be as scared and so the doctor could do it more thoroughly and carefully while I sat still.

They scheduled my surgery for first thing Wednesday morning, so we got up much earlier than usual so we could get there by 6am. I got to wear my pajamas and take my duck, but I couldn't have anything to eat or drink before we got there. It was a pretty weird experience. Mom and Dad were pretty shaken up and not feeling well, but I was very brave. When the nurse took me away from Mom and Dad I didn't even cry. The surgery didn't take very long. In less than an hour, I was back with Mom and Dad, which we were all very happy about. It went as well as it possibly could have, and about an hour after they finished, I was home playing with my toys like nothing had happened.

One funny coincidence about all this is I appeared with my surgeon in a newspaper article Mom wrote last year. To read about my doctor, Mark Smith, and see me in the article, click here.

We'll have to go back to the doctor's office Monday to have my stitches removed, and after that we should be all done with this. We are all glad they don't have to mess with tape and gauze on my face and that I'm not bleeding everywhere anymore. Most of all, we're all glad I'm okay.

Monday, December 15, 2008

New Parenting Opportunities

Dad has an on-going joke at work that whenever he wants to give someone a lot of work, he calls it an "opportunity." Well, this weekend Mom and Dad had some new parenting opportunities.

It started on Friday night. A little red dot on my face near my neck appeared around a month ago and has grown slowly since then. On Friday afternoon, it caught on my coat and started bleeding everywhere. While I was perfectly happy and not in any pain, it distressed Mom and Dad quite a bit to see me running around with blood pouring out of my face, all over my clothes, the carpet, the walls, and everywhere else. Mom and Dad tried to stop the bleeding, but after a few unsuccessful hours, we all went to the doctor's office. Unfortunately, there was only a nurse-practitioner there, and she wasn't very helpful - she did help stop the bleeding by taping some gauze on the wound. All she could tell my parents was that we needed to see a pediatric dermatologist. Unfortunately, there is only one in all of Austin, and they probably can't see us until January, so tomorrow I'm going to the regular dermatologist, who also sees kids.

Sunday we met up with my cousin Amy for lunch at Chuy's, gauze on my face and all. Amy and her friend Adam were very nice. It was a nice day so we ate outside and were having a very pleasant lunch until a bird pooped in Mommy's food. It even splashed on Daddy's face. Amy said it was good luck but Mom and Dad weren't so sure.

When we got home, I decided I didn't like my lunch so much after all, and projectile vomited all over the inside of the new car. It was my first real throw up! I tried to hold it 30 more seconds until we got out of the car, but I couldn't make it. Oh well. Mom and Dad tried to clean me up in my bath, but that resulted in the gauze coming off and I started bleeding everywhere again. While Mom and Dad were trying to stop the bleeding, our dog Peepa saw the open garage door and took off to explore the neighborhood. Luckily, some nice people in the neighborhood found Peepa and returned her to our house before we even knew she was gone. They were probably pretty concerned when Mom showed up at the door with barf and blood all over her.

This morning, Mom and Dad tried to figure out how to put the car seat back together; they had to take it apart to clean it. The car still smelled, so Mom had more cleaning to do - Dad wondered if it will ever be the same and says this is why he doesn't buy new cars very often.

In the meantime, I have this gauze on my face. It doesn't bother me at all - I've been really happy the past few days - except when they have to take it off. That tape hurts when they rip it off, but Mom and I found some new tape today that shouldn't hurt. And I surprised Mom this afternoon by barfing again, this time in my playpen, which was easier to clean up.

Mom and Dad feel like this was a pretty challenging weekend. They are hoping they don't have any more parenting "opportunities" over the next few weeks and that I start feeling better soon.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I like coloring

Since it has been cold the past couple of days, Mom and I have stayed inside. We've been getting our house and our stuff ready for Peanut's arrival, which is now just four months away. One of the things we picked up is a new big kid seat that makes it so I can sit at the dinner table with Dad and Mom when Peanut needs my high chair. Mom set it up for me so I could color, and you can see I'm working on a masterpiece. Mom and Dad are excited that I finally figured out how to work crayons.

Here are some pictures of me playing in a playground (before it got cold), coloring, and checking out my new car.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

New ride

Today we had another big adventure. After I ate breakfast we headed to a car dealership, where we test drove another Mazda5. This time we ended up bringing it home with us! I really dig my new ride. It is nice because I'm higher up and can see more things out the window. Mom likes it because she has more room for my things and eventually, my new sister. And Dad is a little sad because he gave up his car for Mom's Protege5, but he's happy to have have cars that will work for our growing family. I'm excited that I'm riding in style in our new car.

Otherwise, we've had a pretty eventful week since we came home from Pennsylvania. Wednesday Mom and I celebrated my new walking skills on Austin soil by walking to the mailbox, which we've since made a daily event. We also went to the playground where I climbed through a tunnel a bunch of times, played with some spinny things, climbed up a playscape, and went down a slide. But my favorite thing has been playing in my sandbox. And now I walk wherever I can when we go out, at places like the grocery store and even the car dealership. It's been a lot of fun walking around, and I am really enjoying my shoes.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

To celebrate Thanksgiving, we traveled to Pennsylvania to see Grandma, Grandpa, and all our other family there. We had a great week.

The plane ride went well. We had a row to ourselves and I got a nice nap in. Once we got there it was cold outside but warm inside thanks to Grandma, who turned up the heat for us. We were also welcomed to the house with loads of fun toys to play with. My favorites were a green tunnel I could crawl through and Grandma's Tupperware. I also really liked their Duplo blocks. By the end of the trip I figured out that not only are they fun to pull apart - you can put them together. Grandma and Grandpa also took me for wagon rides and I got to push on a big rock and roll down a little hill. Grandma also took us to Peters Orchard, where I saw big pumpkins.

Another neat thing about our trip was I got to stay up late because of the time change. Mom and Dad didn't want to adjust my schedule so they kept me up an hour later, which was nice for all of us because we got to sleep in an extra hour. Dad also saved some time by growing a beard. Even though Mom likes it, he says he's shaving it off before he goes back to work Wednesday.

A couple days after we arrived, Dad went with Grandpa and Uncle Daniel to check out a brewery and a hockey game and I got to hang out with Grandma, Aunt Lauren and Mom. They took me to a mall and got me something new - shoes! I didn't like them at first because it was late in the day and I was tired, but the next day I really put them to good use. They are fantastic! They make it much easier to walk; since I got them, I've been walking much more. I'm also getting a lot faster. Mom and Dad are super excited. They can't wait to take me to fun new places in Austin now that I can really enjoy them on my feet.

The best part about the trip was all the people I got to spend time with. I got to see Mom Mom and Pop, my great-grandparents, and lots of fun aunts, uncles and cousins, including Mianna, who is five, and Luke, who is about my age. It was very fun playing with all of them. I also got to chase a bunch of cats around on Grandma's cat farm. Grandpa said maybe next time I come there will be a dog for me to play with. That will be fun. I missed Matty and Peepa.

Thanksgiving was very yummy, and I got to try lots of new foods like pies, turkey, stuffing, corn casserole and cornbread, cranberry dressing. We had lots of great food. Grandma made all kinds of things for us to eat and Grandpa fried a turkey. But don't worry - Grandma had another one in the oven.

To see photos of my fun Thanksgiving week, click here.