Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Another Family Update

Well, it's been a hectic last couple of weeks. John was out of town all last week. While he was gone, Jonathan came down with strep. Thankfully, though, we caught it early. All the poor little guy ever really got was a nasty cough and an ugly rash. He still has a little bit of the cough, but the rash is pretty much gone. He has to continue his antibiotic through Thanksgiving morning. So far, Jacob has yet to come down with it. He's had a little bit of a cough the last couple of days, but no fever, no rash, and his throat doesn't seem to be bothering him. His cough was not nearly as bad as Jonathan's, and it seems to be doing much better now. Still praying everybody stays healthy at least through Thanksgiving, though!

While John was out of town last week, his test score on the Audit section of the CPA exam came in. He got an 86!!! The online course he's taking really seems to be paying off. He's halfway through the exam now. He's planning on taking the REG section ( I think it's this one, anyway) in January, and then he'll probably take BEC in March or April. (I'm not sure, but I think March may be an off month for testing; they have testing for 2 months, then 1 month with no testing.) If he passes both, he will finally be done! He has until next November to pass the whole thing. Please continue to keep him in your prayers. I am so very proud of him!

We've been mildly concerned about Jacob's lack of walking lately. He wasn't exactly up to par at his 15 month check-up. His pediatrician recommended therapy for him and mentioned that we may be looking at having an MRI done if he's still not walking at his 18 month check-up. I've been putting off calling about therapy, really trying to buckle down on working with him and seriously beefing up the praise and encouragement. He's really shown a LOT of improvement over the last couple of weeks. He will now bend down to pick things up and straighten back up on his own; he stands up on his own now--without any support; he has started choosing to walk along the wall a lot more instead of crawling (which Jonathan did right before he started walking solo); and he's getting braver--taking more steps between objects that are spaced farther apart. I'm seriously starting to think he could be going solo by Thanksgiving, or shortly thereafter. I'm not nearly as stressed out about the upcoming 18 month check-up any more. We have until February; I'm pretty sure he'll have it down by then.

Thanksgiving is just a couple of days away! I love Thanksgiving, and I'm really looking forward to it this year. We're having it at my parents' house, and my in-laws and my mom's parents are going to be joining us. Family starts arriving tonight! Can't wait to see everybody; wish a few others could make it, but hopefully we'll get to see them soon!

Even though this is a little bit early---Happy Thanksgiving to all our dear family and friends!!!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Jacob's 15 Month Check-Up

It's so hard to believe Jakey's already 15 months old!!! He and Jonathan are growing up so stinkin' fast! Don't worry; I have not forgotten that I still haven't posted any one year pictures for Jacob. I promise to get some on here before the child turns 2, when I'll have turn around and put his two year pics up! Those who know me well know I can be a bit slow at times.

Jacob had his 15 mo. check-up yesterday. For the most part, things went pretty well. He gained just over another pound (he's now up to 22lbs, 5oz). He's still sitting between the 10th-25th percentile for his weight. The poor little guy did come down with a tummy bug this past Monday evening. He threw up a couple of times, and since the bug attacked his appetite hasn't been just real great. Dr. Hoving said that would definitely account for him slipping from 25-50th percentile back down to the 10-25th range. She also said his appetite could take up to a week to come back, though I think it may be on the way back now judging from the breakfast he ate this morning. Dr. Hoving was a bit concerned however, that Jake is 15 months old and still not walking independently. He's been taking a step or two on his own, and he will walk as long as he has something to hold on to. He will also stand alone. But that's about as far as he's come in the last three months. She's not worried about a developmental problem yet, but if he hits 18 months and is still not walking independently we may be looking at having an MRI done. She gave us some tips to help give him a little more encouragement, and she also recommended that I call a group called Early Childhood Intervention. They will come out to our home about once a month and basically teach us to teach him how to walk. She also said that if I make the appointment and he suddenly takes off walking, I could call and cancel. So we really don't have anything to lose. I'm planning to call today to set up an appointment for him. Since we got home from the doctor's office yesterday, he has made a few strides. He actually stood up in the middle of the floor (with nothing to hold on to) all by himself, and he took two big steps from Mommy to Daddy. So we're making progress, just slowly. Poor Jake also got poked a lot yesterday. He had three shots, plus a TB test, plus they drew blood to test for lead (a routine thing they do). Needless to say, yesterday was quite a traumatic day for him!

It's been quite a week around here. As I said earlier, Jake had a tummy bug on Monday night. Jonathan caught it on Tuesday night. That poor kid threw up from 7:30 at night to 4:00 the next morning. His appetite, which never has been real big, has decreased as well. I'm more worried about him not eating than I was about Jake not eating. The bug also hit John on Wednesday night--while he was in Canadian. Not a fun audit trip for him. Fortunately, I've managed to avoid the bug so far. I'm praying it stays that way.

Jonathan got to play Guitar Hero for the first time in a really long time! Believe it or not, Daddy let him play while Mommy was at Jazzercise last night. He was a big boy! When John told him it was time to put the guitars up, he handed his to Daddy without so much as a wimper. Looks like he might get to play again real soon!

Also, congratulations to our niece, Brooklynn! Christian Kyle Martinez was born at 5:15 Wednesday evening. He weighed 7lbs, 9oz and was 21 inches long. Brooklynn was in labor for about 24 hours. We are super excited about this new addition to our family!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Halloween Weekend 2009

"I want some cake!" ~Jonathan
The cake. (No, we weren't very nice.)

The big moment. Think she's spotted us yet?

Opening presents. Some were gag gifts, some were good gifts.

"Lightning McQueen" ~aka Jonathan Merriss

"Baby Dino" ~aka Jacob Merriss

"Rawr! Bring on the candy!!"


Jonathan's candy stash.

Jacob's candy stash.

Halloween at our house was awesome this year! I actually put up a few decorations. I've never done that before--but I thought, Why not make it fun for the kiddos? We didn't do a whole lot. I got a Happy Halloween door mat to go outside the front door; we put a glow-in-the dark door sticker for the front door; and I hung a few ghosts from our trees. We got together with my sister-in-law, Kristin, earlier in the month to make a bunch of Halloween goodies. I'm not sure what the boys loved more--the goodies or playing with Aunt Kristin and Uncle Marshall's pooch, Chilton.

On October 29, my mom turned 50. I could not let that birthday go by without doing something special for her. So we threw her a surprise party! She'd already had an over-the-hill party for her 40th, but I didn't really remember too much from that one (not sure why--just can't seem to remember it) so I decided to give her another one. My dad took her out for dinner that night. While he was gone, I let myself and the rest of our party guests (just a handful of family members) into their house and we set up their kitchen with a few decorations. When they came home about 30-45 minutes later, we "hid" back toward their entry way. The first thing she saw was her cake with the decorations and her presents, then as she came further in toward the light switch she finally saw all of us. She was surprised, and that was my goal.
Jonathan dressed as Lightning McQueen (from the Cars movie) this year, and Jacob was a dinosaur. They were both so cute, and were actually pretty well behaved for most of the evening. The festivities started early. Our church does a Fall Festival every year for all the kiddos, and I'm not real wild about getting the boys out when it's really dark. So we left about 5:00 Halloween night and took the boys trick-or-treating. We usually stick to our relatives' homes--we don't take the kids to anyone's home that we don't know well. After that we headed to the church for the Fall Festival fun. Jacob is still too young to really get into all the action; he pretty much hung around Mommy, who was working the popcorn machine all night. Jonathan, however, had a blast. Daddy took him around to all the games, which he got candy for playing. His favorite was a balloon popping game. By the end of the night, both boys had cleaned up pretty well. Despite his sugar high, even Jonathan crashed pretty quickly after we got home. Definitely looking forward to next year, when both the boys will be into it!
Now, bring on Thanksgiving!