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Saturday, February 28, 2015

Giving Back With Little Dude's Birthday Blessings Bash!

Next Friday is Little Dude's first birthday.  In the year since he's been born, our family has been blessed in so many ways by family, friends, and complete strangers.  We've received meals during and after Little Dude's hospitalizations, money to help cover gas and other expenses from his many doctor appointments, visits, phone calls, and messages of encouragement, help with household chores, etc.

I believe in paying it forward when someone blesses you.  So, in honor of Little Dude's birthday, I'll be donating 20% of the amount of each order placed during the month of March at my Etsy shop, Annalie's Baby Boutique, to Gracie's Gowns.  I plan to make this an annual event and will pick a different organization to donate to every March.  I'm excited to kick off the first annual "Little Dude's Birthday Blessings Bash" month! 

You can also support Gracie's Gowns by sponsoring a gown for a child.
I've written about Gracie's Gowns before, but just to refresh your memory, Gracie's Gowns is a non-profit organization that provides personalized hospital gowns to chronically ill and special needs children at no cost to the family. Gracie's Gowns is very special to me because not only was it founded and run by a very sweet friend of mine, but because Little Dude received a gown from her as well.    

Little Dude with his hospital gown from Gracie's Gowns.  It's personalized with his name in the corner.

Let's make this month a memorable one for Gracie's Gowns! 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Random Monday - Feb 16, 2015

I had planned to write this post yesterday, but decided it would be more fun to get the flu and be miserable all day instead.  Side note...that was a terrible plan.

Star's bedtime and naptime ritual includes a "huh and a mah." She gives me a big hug (huh) and a kiss (mah) on each cheek. Then she leans back to look at my face, says, "uh-oh!" and, wipes her kisses off my face before laying down to go to sleep.

Tattling is not allowed in my house.  It's okay to tell on someone if they're hurting someone or breaking something.  So, when a child comes to me with that tattling look on their face and starts their sentence with, "So-and-so did...", I cut them off and ask them if someone is hurt.  If the answer to that is no, I ask if someone is breaking something.  Princess came to tattle on Little Man to me the other day so I asked her both questions.  Her first answer was no, but when I asked her if someone was breaking something, she replied, "Just the rules!"
Touche, my dear.

Little Man: Mommy, can I take my sweater to grandma's house?
Me: Sure, I guess.  Why do you need your sweater?
Little Man: In case I get sweaty, then I can put it on.

A photo posted by Hannah (@supermommyornot) on

Last week was Tube Feeding Awareness Week.  There are so many myths and wrong beliefs about tube feeding that raising awareness is important so kids and adults who are tube fed don't feel ostracized or abnormal.  I shared Little Dude's tube feeding story on the blog and shared posts on Facebook and Instagram to help raise awareness.

Can we just take a second to talk about how a certain little guy is only 2 1/2 weeks away from turning ONE?!?!  I've always looked forward to my kiddos going into the toddler stage as it's so much fun (and work!), but it scares me a bit with Little Dude because I have to face the fact that he's slowly growing out of being a baby and that means that we will have new challenges soon.  So far, he's unable to eat any table foods without choking except for gluten-free puffs that I break in half for him, we don't know for sure if he has Celiac's Disease or not, we know he has food sensitivities, but not sure to what, and he is nowhere near ready to drink out of anything other than a bottle.  I'm excited and nervous to see what this next year brings for my sweet little boy.  We'll just take it one step at a time and I'll keep reminding myself that he won't be going off to college getting all of his nutrition from formula in a bottle.

Thank you for stopping by my blog! I appreciate each of my readers and would love to connect with you on Facebook and Instagram!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Shopping for Paper Airplanes

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.  By purchasing items through those links, I will earn a commission. You will not pay more by buying a product through my link. When you buy through my affiliate link, it helps me be able to offer you free items and giveaways. 
Yesterday, Little Dude had a full day at the doctor's with a 4+ hour long gastric emptying study (results came back normal, yay!!) and two appointments.  We had some time to kill between appointments so the two of us headed over to the mall.  I hadn't been to Gymboree for a while, and so I loaded Little Dude in the stroller and made a beeline for the store as soon as we got through the mall entrance. 

I found some adorable things for Little Dude that I wanted to share with you.  

I love the nostalgia of paper airplanes so when I saw that there's a whole line at Gymboree dedicated to them (search for paper planes to see the whole collection), I couldn't walk away empty-handed.  I found two onesies and an adorable knotted beanie hat for Little Dude.

I thought the "Dream Big" onesie was especially fitting for my special needs little guy

Gymboree is currently having a Presidents Day sale on EVERYTHING with up to 80% off!  You can't beat those prices and when you shop now, you won't pay full price for anything online or in store. 

How sweet is this little hat! 

 What's your favorite collection currently available at Gymboree right now?

Thank you for stopping by my blog! I appreciate each of my readers and would love to connect with you on Facebook and Instagram!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Little Dude's Tube Feeding Story

This time last year, Little Dude was still a month away from being born, and we had no idea what he would face.  If someone had told me that he would have to be tube fed, I would have completely freaked out.  In fact, after one of Little Dude's many doctor appointments when he was about a month old, I stopped at the Target Cafe to attempt to feed him before driving the 45 minutes back home.  While I struggled to get my screaming baby boy to take even one drink from his bottle, a family at a nearby table struck up a conversation with me.  They could definitely see that something was wrong and asked about him.  We talked for a while and at one point, the mom asked what the doctors were planning to do if we couldn't get him to eat.  I remember standing there stunned when she asked if he would have to get a feeding tube.  I stammered out that I didn't know, but in my head I was in complete disbelief and denial that it would ever come to that.  I mean, only kids who were seriously ill, disabled, or premature got feeding tubes, right?  Little did I know that less than a month later, I would be signing a form allowing a surgeon to place a G Tube in my baby's stomach.

Little Dude had an Ng tube for 5 days before getting his G Tube

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Little Dude - 11 Months

Age: 11 months

Weight and height: 16 pounds, 3 ounces and 28 inches long.  In January, he had pneumonia and RSV and wasn't able to handle his regular volumes of food so he lost some weight.  He was down to 15', 14", but thankfully he's starting to put some of that weight back on now.

Wearing size: Size 3 diapers and 9-12 month clothes. 

Likes: He loves attention and is total little flirt with the sweetest smile.  He loves army crawling around the house and bugging the big kids. 

Dislikes: He really hates it when I do his G Tube and skin care every morning-not because it hurts, but because he can't roll over and play when I'm doing it.  He also hates his skin care routine because he strongly dislikes having his hands, arms, and head touched and moved around.  To get him to lay still and stop fighting me, I play a Youtube video on my tablet for him to watch while I'm taking care of his tube (he's a big fan of Peter Hollens, Lindsey Stirling, and Baby Einstein). 

Eating habits: He gets four bottles a day with 5 ounces of water and 3 scoops of the Alimentum formula which is concentrated for lower volume.  I start each feeding by offering the bottle and whatever he doesn't eat is tube fed.  He drinks approximately 50% of his formula.  He eats pureed baby food 2 times a day which I add a teaspoon of olive oil and a tablespoon of rice cereal to for added calories.  He had been doing well with gluten free baby puffs, but in the last month, has been throwing up every time he has anything more than purees.  I'm attributing that to being sick which makes him even more gaggy than usual. 

Sleeping habits: He takes a morning nap from about 9:30 am to 10:30 and an afternoon nap from about 1 pm to 3 or 4 pm.  He sleeps okay at night, but does still wake up several times.  He usually goes right back to sleep when I give him his pacifier.

Milestones: He finally learned how to sit unsupported!!  This was a milestone that we've been working on for months and he finally got strong enough to be able to do it.
Miscellaneous: He was sick for ALL of January with pneumonia and RSV.  It was a very long, very difficult month for both of us.  He was hospitalized for one night, had three emergency room visits, and saw a doctor several times.  He also was on three different antibiotics.  I'm so glad he's finally feeling better from that, but his lungs are already sounding junky again so I know that something else is starting up. 
We have started taking him to a different health care system because we felt that it was time for some fresh eyes on him.  I really loved some of his doctors at Mayo and we're going to miss them, but it's much better for all of his care to be at one place to avoid confusion so he has all new specialists now.  The best part is that his new primary care doctor is a genetic specialist and is very good at caring for medically complex children. 

Thank you for stopping by my blog! I appreciate each of my readers and would love to connect with you on Facebook and Instagram!


Sunday, February 8, 2015

Feeding Tube Awareness Week

Today starts Feeding Tube Awareness Week!  This time last year, I had no idea that I would be raising awareness for Little Dude and hadn't even heard of Feeding Tube Awareness week.

This week, I will be posting about tube feeding here on my blog and on social media.  If you have any questions at all about tube feeding or Little Dude, now is the time to ask them!  There are no dumb questions!  Just remember, a year ago, I knew nothing about tube feeding either :)

And to close this blog post, here's a picture of my favorite tubie!

Thank you for stopping by my blog! I appreciate each of my readers and would love to connect with you on Facebook and Instagram!

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