Monday, June 27, 2011

The Fireman's Fair

The Fireman's Fair crept up on us quickly this year. We didn't want to miss out on the fun - we made it there on the the last day of the fair, with only a few hours to spare!

Matthew was out of his mind excited this year (a HUGE difference from his melt-downs last year). His main goal - to play games. That's all he wanted to do. And he did pretty well for himself. (With a little help of course).
He was quite proud of his winnings.
He didn't freak out about the rides this year. He was still a bit uneasy on some of them - but he hung on tight!
One of his favorite rides was Jalopy Junction - where he showed off his driving skills. He insisted on going on this ride twice.
I rode with him in the jalopy - we left Noah and daddy on the sidelines. Could Noah look any more bored??
Auntie Dana took the second spin with Matthew.
Pop Pop helped out with fishing for sharks.
Daddy joined Pop Pop and Matthew on a trip down the BIG slide.
We made time for a quick snack of Zeppoles - a fair staple.
There wasn't one game that Matthew didn't want to try.
And with a little help, he even beat daddy and Pop Pop at the water game.
Before leaving, we promised Matthew one more game.
And then it was time to go. Matthew protested and even conned us into buying him a hot dog on the way out.
And for the rest of the night - even at bath time and before we tucked him in - he asked us to take him back. And if we could have - we would!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Noah's Big Day

Today was Noah's baptism. Since it was a day that required fancy dress, I decided the best course of action was to hang out in our jammies until the absolute last minute. In Noah's case, he hung out in his diaper.
Matthew LOVES hanging out in his jammies so he was more than happy to comply.
Noah's little suit hung in our bedroom, ready to be worn.
Once I got all the boys dressed, I forced them into a short photo shoot.

And I even agreed to be photographed.
Then it was off to the church. Noah was one of six babies being baptized today.
We set Matthew up with his "busy toys" - a magnetic Toy Story set that we bought at the church tag sale.
Noah took a cat nap before the action started.
Noah was very well behaved during the ceremony. I'm not gonna lie, I have been nervous for weeks worrying about this!
After the ceremony we took a few pics in the church.
We attempted to get all the cousins together. This is the best shot I have.
After leaving the church it was off to the restaurant to continue the celebration with good friends and family.

Mare Mare took the opportunity to take a short snooze in between courses.
I'm sure she was having daydreams about this cake!
Noah cooperated for pictures throughout the day - including this one with his Godparents.
Matthew spent his time with his best bud Alex.
And at the end of the day, we were all stuffed with good food, good cake and good times. Noah was spent!!
And now Matthew and Noah are in dreamland for the night. May God bless all my boys!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Little Bear

Admittedly, not the best pic of Noah, but I love the Dr. Evil "One Million Dollars" look he has on his face here.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Your questions about Noah

After my "Going for Broke" post I received quite a few emails asking about Noah's symptoms, how we knew what was going on and exactly how much of everything we are doing for him. I thought I'd post about it in case anyone else stumbles upon my blog and has the same questions.

How did we discover the milk allergy? What were the symptoms?
We started Noah out on Good Start Gentle formula (we had a great experience with Good Start with Ish). Noah would fight his feedings. He would flail his arms and legs and was very tense at every feeding. He would cry and fuss after every feeding until he eventually wore himself out and fell asleep. He would scream in pain from gas. He also had about 10 dirty diapers a day - with very mucousy stool that caused an unbelievable rash which is very common with milk allergies.

Our first remedy was to switch to Enfamil Nutramigen - a hypoallergenic formula for infants with a milk protein allergy (our pedi felt the symptoms he was presenting were indicative of an allergy). We immediately saw a difference when we switched. Noah was calmer, he didn't seem to be in so much pain when eating and his rash was getting better (thanks in part to 2 prescription creams). Unfortunately, although his symptoms were getting better, they were not going away. At one point he even had blood in his stool - a sign that the allergy was still going strong. We knew we had to do something more - something different. So at the advice of our pediatrician, we went to see a pediatric GI specialist. After her exam, she determined that Noah's milk allergy was quite severe - so even the minuscule amount of milk protein in the Nutramigen was affecting him. She prescribed the Nutramigen AA. This formula is amino-acid based with absolutely zero milk proteins. Within a few days, his rash was completely gone, his bowel movements became "regular", he was much calmer during and after feedings and his overall demeanor improved - he became a happier baby.

This took a few weeks to remedy - as we waited for the formula switches to work. It also took quite a few visits to doctors, as well as quite a few calls to the nurse's line at my pedi's office. But thankfully, we seem to have found a wonderful (though expensive!) remedy for Noah. We are currently working with our doc's office to try to get Cigna to cover the expense of the formula. I'll let you know how that goes!

How did we know Noah had reflux?
We actually didn't know Noah had reflux. He has what they call "Silent Reflux". He wasn't violently spitting up, but he had an excessive amount of spit-up. He stomach would also churn and gurgle a lot. And while some of these symptoms were also due to the milk allergy, they are also symptoms of silent reflux and my pedi thought he would benefit from a small dose of Pepcid twice a day. The GI specialist agreed. So he gets .6ml twice a day. This, combined with the formula change, is really making a difference.

How much of the probiotic are we giving Noah?
The GI specialist recommended 4 drops a day. She specifically recommended the BioGaia. It's a natural supplement that we feel can't hurt - so we added it to our arsenal. I haven't been able to find it in-store, so I bought it online from

We use Gripe Water as needed - I don't know how it does what it does but it cures the hiccups instantly! And I think it helps with some gas/evening fussiness.

We also take Noah to a chiropractor. Matt, Ish and I all go. It's another natural remedy that we all benefit from. Ish has been going since he's 3 weeks old. We first brought Noah in at 2 weeks old.

I have learned a lot these past few weeks - and I have found a new group of friends here on the internet going through similar circumstances with their infants. It's comforting to "talk" to others going through the same thing. So if you would like to reach out to me - email me (my email is in my blogger profile).

And because I can't have a post without a picture - here's Noah in his brother's highchair:

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day

To my husband, my father, and my grandpa's in heaven.

We were able to get a few cute shots today. As a group:
And as twosomes:

Of course there were a lot of not-so-cute shots as well. I think Noah's face sums it up!!
Happy Father's Day to all the father's in your life!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Going For Broke

Prescription non-milk-based formula to combat a severe milk allergy: $58 per 14oz can (which lasts about 5 days and Cigna refuses to cover)
GI Specialist recommended probiotic to help balance a sensitive stomach: $39 (for the tiniest bottle ever!)
1 bottle of Liquid Pepcid to battle silent reflux: $10 co-pay each month
Little Tummys Gripe Water for his little tummy issues: $13 for the big bottle at Babies R Us
MUCH happier baby: Priceless

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Party Time

We went to the 4th birthday party of my good friend Joanne's youngest son Joshua today. Always a good time to be had at Joanne's parties!

She has a lot of great outdoor toys - Ish took notice of the tee ball set right away. We were only at the party a few minutes when he started swinging away. He was using the wrong end of the bat before Matt intervened.
The games Joanne had set up for the kiddies revolved around a "bug hunt" - hats, nets and bug collecting jars were all provided for the little hunters.
Ish's first task was to collect baby frogs with his net. He did quite well.
Then it was time to dig in the dirt - Ish uncovered a giant red ant (of the plastic variety of course).
After that, it was time to wrangle up some butterflies with the help of daddy.
And last but not least, it was into the Mater ball pit - which was actually a snake pit, filled with multi-colored little snakes (Ish's favorite!).
He was quite proud of his bug hunting accomplishments today.
And he rewarded himself with some Doritos.
Then it was lunch time - mac and cheese, a hot dog and a juice box. Life doesn't get any better!
Noah had lunch at the party too. Complete with some belly burping action.
After lunch Ish stopped by the "Grow a bug" table to drop in his little capsule.
And of course there was cake and cookies.
Noah tried on Ish's hunting hat when he wasn't looking.
We ended our time at the party with a little fishing.
Ish cheated - but he looked cute while doing it.
And now Ish is asleep. Excited at the prospect of bringing his toy snakes to grandma's house tomorrow. I'm sure Mare Mare will be thrilled!