Torgesen Family Times

{We are trying to enjoy and record the moments that make life special}
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September - 2007

September is almost over and I'm remembering what it was like last year at this time. Alex was ~6months old and was starting to be mobile. He loved moving around, standing up and starting to eat foods. He is eating pears with Grandma below. Wow - how things have changed!

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Ear tubes are in!

It was a long long day yesterday.

Alex woke us up bright and early around 7 AM and promptly used sign language and said "eat". We distracted him with toys and going outside, but about every 5 minutes he repeated his "eat" command. We tried to get him drinking as much as possible, though since he couldn't drink after 9 AM. Then, when that had to stop - he would say "eat" and "milk" or "wa-wa". We successfully distracted him, mostly Lance, while I was getting a bag ready for the day. We took turns eating out of his sight, so that at least we weren't starving all day.

They told us to check in at 11:45 AM, so we were there on the dot. But, after about 10 minutes - I realized we weren't going anywhere anytime soon. I asked and his appointment was at 1 PM!!!!!! AHHHHH!

We were finally called after Alex did a very good job of playing in the lobby with all of the exciting things Children's has to offer (crayons, fish tanks, toys, books).

Every time he sees a doctor (or doctor-like person) he starts to cry and get upset now. So, needless to say - when the doctors (2 anesthesiologists, 2 nurses, 1 admissions, the surgeon, etc) came in - he got pretty upset when the needed to take his temperature, check his BP, and get some other vitals. He was so upset, in fact, that they decided it would be best to give a valium dosage. It worked pretty well and was pretty giggly and wobbly. He was still too upset to go back alone to the operating room, so I was able to go with him. I had to place him on the table and they put a mask over his face with strawberry flavored gas. He screamed so much that first breath took a while, and then the second, too. But, he was out within 5 breaths and was making a funny noise. The two anesthesiologist said it was normal and the surgeon helped me find my way back to our room.

About 45 minutes later, he was returned back to us and was very glad. He cried quite a bit, and was probably very scared. Feeling funny and where in the heck was he??? WHO were these people???? Where's my Mama & Daddy? We quickly got him juice and a popsicle. Boy - was he thirsty! He drank and drank and drank. He was all over his Daddy. He just wanted Daddy and nearly broke his Mama's heart.

We were given instructions and he did very well through all of that. He kept everything down and we were discharged probably 45 minutes later. He's getting drops in his ears for 3 days, which should clear up his infection that was there before the procedure. They said there was fluid behind the ear drums and everything went as planned. He did have a "bronco-spasm" where he chocked a bit on something and his lungs went into spasm. It can be dangerous, but the anesthesiologists took care of it by giving him air in his lungs, but they did have to put in an IV line in case they needed to give him more drugs. The pushed air in his lungs caused the burps later on, but nothing else. He was very unhappy about the IV when he was more awake. He tried pulling it out many times.

We got home and didn't do much. He was missing Bella very much and got to see her. He got to eat, too and ate like a horse - actually 2 horses! He ate an entire can of soup, 4 string cheeses, cereal, crackers, and much more.

Overall, it was a long hard day. One that I don't want to repeat anytime soon. Although, it did put things into perspective - Lance say a co-worker there with his 2 year old that was scheduled for kidney surgery.

New tricycle and soup

Today my Mama got me a new tricycle and it is so much fun to play with! I push my feet around and make it go. My Mama says that these pedals are used for something, and every once and a while I'll try them out. But, it's much faster to just push my feet! Check out my streamers! I even have a little carrier in the back to put my teddy bear, my turtle and anyother toy I want to carry around. I call this "my bite" which really means my bike. Did you know how hard it is to pronounce "k"s?

Here is me eating soup on Sunday for lunch. I like a lot of soups - but Chicken Noodle is my favorite, so my Mama just squeezed out most of the juices and left me with a whole bunch of soup. I ate the entire can - just myself. My parents say I must be going through ANOTHER growth spurt because of how much I ate in one day. Below, you'll see my suggestions for getting the last little bits of juices out of the bowl. MMMMM!

I am just growing up so fast. Now I say a TON of words. Mama and Daddy can't even count, although everyone asks. I can just talk your hear off! I say these words: apple, peach, banana, cheese, bike, cereal, cracker, soup, turkey, milk, water, eat, bunny, dog, yeah, no, mine, more, Mama, Daddy, Bella, Rock, woof woof, ouch, nose, ear, cheeks, knee, toes, feet, head, hair, chin, bye bye, hello, hi, seat, my, football, ball, and many many more that my Mama can't remember right now.

I understand much more than I can say, too. My Mom and Dad ask me all sorts of questions and they can understand me and I can understand them.

And just recently, if you ask my name - I will say Alex (well... more like "ahh yie") and point to myself. I know my own name!

Also, I put two words together:
More Water (Mo wa-wa)
My Mama/Daddy
More (any food from above)
Bye Bye Mama/Daddy
My seat
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What a BIG boy

Alex had his 18mo checkup last week and he is a BIG boy!

34.5 inches tall (95th%)
26 lbs 12 oz (63rd%)
19 1/8 inches head (73rd %)

Former preemies and a big hug!

This last weekend we enjoyed getting together with two families that had gone through similar situations with having preemie babies. Both were much earlier than Alex, I think 29 weeks (~1 lb 14 oz) and 31 weeks (~2 lb 12 oz) compared to Alex at 34 weeks (5 lbs 2 oz), but they are lively personality filled little girls that are growing up so fast! They had fun playing with the dogs and saying "Doggie" many times. Bella was putting up with being petted as much as possible and finally had enough and went upstairs. Rock was in the kennel, but received so much attention through the fencing.

Then, on Sunday we visited Jackson. Alex and I went over to his house while his parents went to a Seahawk game. Jackson and Alex sure had a fun time! Alex will be going over to Jackson's house on Thursdays when I have to go back to work after the toddler group. I'm so excited to start the toddler group. What I'm specifically looking forward to most is the opportunity to meet other Moms in my community and learn about parenting more and hear about different ways to handle different situations. Sometimes I feel like I have no idea what I'm doing! Also, it will be a chance to see Alex playing with other children. Although he does this a lot at daycare, I don't get to observe him and see what he's doing/thinking. It's really a wonderful chance to "re-connect".
When it was time to put Jackson down for a nap - I read him a book, gave him his blanket, and laid him in his crib and said night-night. He was able to put himself to sleep just like that. No crying, nothing. Although I'm sure there was some crying to get to that stage, the end result was FABULOUS! Especially considering that Alex didn't fall asleep last night until 9:45 PM! This will be one thing we're working on after the ear tubes go in next week and hoping to learn from other Moms in the toddler group.
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Before Kids

Our dogs were our babies!
Here is Bella on a kayak with me

with Bella when we first moved into our house 5 years ago! I can't believe it's been 5 years!

With Bella and Rock as a puppy - probably 8-10 weeks old

A little bigger Rock, but still being held like a baby
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the beach

We went to the beach this weekend and had a WONDERFUL time. It was like summer - no autumn here! It was sunny and warm, but the thing that was different from summer-time was there was nobody at the beach except for us! If that had been a Saturday in July....
There was no wind and the scenery was georgous! We could see Mt. Rainer across the water. Alex enjoyed throwing rocks and sticks into the water and even got his feet wet.
Alex enjoyed balancing on a log

Alex was full of fun there and I was lucky enough to catch this precious moment above

But, the best part according to Alex was "driving the car" on the way back up from the beach. It's just a short ride and we didn't think it would be that big of a deal, and it wasn't. But, the next day when he was getting strapped to his car seat - OH MY GOSH! He wanted to drive so bad! I guess that's the down side of letting him do this kind of thing every once and a while. While we can tell that it's a safe place, he can't figure out why he can't do it all the time.

"Look Mama - I don't even need to look where I'm going!"

New Stairs (aka "what we did Labor Day weekend")

The railings from our 1984 stairs were too far apart for our curious little man and they needed to go!
They were dangerous and we were just in time!
He had just learned to get through the railings going down the stairs about 3 weeks ago (he had learned to get up the stairs going through the railings months ago but for some reason that wasn't as dangerous). Although we are only partly done - it sure makes a difference! We still have to complete the top of the stairs and then finish the oak with a few coats of clear sealant.
Overall, I'm very happy with the results and wish we would've done this sooner.
The original bid we got for this was ~$15K!!!!!! Then, with us doing all the demo and finishing and painting - it was still ~$7K!!!!!!
So, we asked Steve (my Mom's boyfriend) to help us (meaning Lance) install new stairs (my job was to feed them well and take care of Alex). Not exciting and glamorous, like a new bathroom, but very necessary and it will really change the feeling of the entrance to our home. We noticed another neighbor up the street doing all sorts of remodeling - and guess what they were doing... Windows, stairs, master bathroom - just like us. We still need to compare what we've done and see if we can get any good tips or ideas.
We'll just have to pick out the carpet that will go up the stairs and in the hallway, get it installed and we'll be done.

Two 49ers men

Today was "Football Friday" at Lance's work and therefore he could wear a Football jersey instead of his usual shirt and tie. He's a 49ers fan (yes - it's a crime - I agree!) he wore his retro Jerry Rice jersey I got him as a surprise last birthday for the first time!

The new jersey looked slick, I must say.
Then, we thought, Alex should wear his jersey we got as a gift when he was born. So long ago! So, this morning I sent of my two best 49er men in their football outfits. And took a picture to commemorate. I sent Lance the picture this morning and he forwarded it to his friend (a lifelong Seahawks fan), Cole, who wrote me back and said "I just called CPS for child abuse."
Too Funny!
Are they ready for the season or what?
Now I just need to go out and get him a SeaHawks jersey - Right?

Tubes it is...

Ear tubes that is.

Sept 24th Alex will go under anesthesia to get ear tubes put in. Although we are a little worried/scared (even though we know everything will go fine and worried/scared isn't really the right words to describe how I feel....) we are looking forward to having him feel better, not have to take systemic antibiotics and sleep better = we sleep better.

The surgery will take place at Children's hospital and he will be back to daycare the next day.

That's it for now. Things are just so busy at work that blog posting hasn't been as much as I'd like. Sorry about that. I will try to do more in the upcoming days.

Before Kids

We had so much time... and we didn't even appreciate it! But, we did have some fun.
Oceanside, CA (near San Diego) before we were engaged ~Spring 2003
This was when we were first dating back in 1998! We went on a ski trip up to Whistler and this classic of a photo was taken. Lance was only 25 and I was 21!
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First time to the zoo

We went to the zoo for the first time recently. It was my company's summer picnic, which I helped plan, and it was a blast! Alex was too little for many of the bouncers, face painting, etc - we had so much fun looking around the zoo and on the carousel.

Here is a picture of Alex and his new favorite word -"Turtle" says Alex as he points at the turtles in the nocturnal house at Woodland Park Zoo. We stayed at the turtles for a long time and found that there were so many turtles in just one area. So many different kinds!
He has a couple of turtles on the wall of his bedroom and one day I was telling him what was all on the walls. There was an Octopus, a crab, a whale, and many fishes. Then, we got to the turtles. He said "turtle"right after I told him what they were. And the rest is history. He stuck his tongue out on the "t"s and it was so cute!

We visited the Petting zoo and Alex was petting a Goat.

On the carousel! He cried so much when it was time to get off! It was by far his favorite activity. A close second was the turtles.

We're not sure when we'll be able to go again, but we're sure it will be so much fun!

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