A Tale of Two Sickies

Dear Alex,

As promised, it is time to recount your first experience of a holiday season! Sorry it’s a bit late… took me awhile to get ALLLLLLL the pictures & videos together. Not that it will matter by the time you read this. Anyway, unfortunately as the title of this letter suggests, the holidays weren’t everything we’d hoped they would be for you.

It started off fairly well… we journeyed down to Hampton to stay with Nana & Grump for Thanksgiving. You were sleeping more than normal the day or so before Thanksgiving, but I didn’t think too much of it. The morning of Thanksgiving you were a bit fussy, and then woke up from your nap with a 103 degree temperature! 😦 We struggled with getting it back down the rest of the day, and you were understandably not interested in eating much of your Thanksgiving meals. However, we were still able to get a couple pictures of you eating dinner at Nana & Grump’s and playing with your cousins:

You slept fitfully that night and the next day was more of the same struggle to keep your temperature down. Finally when it started to hit 104 even with Tylenol, I ended up taking you to the nearest Urgent Care facility. They diagnosed you with an ear infection, & we had you on antibiotics by the end of the day. However, we decided to cut our trip short and head home so that you could recover in peace & comfort. My poor baby! 😦 You being sick is the saddest, most pitiful thing in the world. However, one thing about you being sick is that you always ONLY want to be with mommy….

Which is a blessing and a curse at times, but overall I try to soak it up as much as I can… any other time you’re squirming to get off of my lap and get into everything, but for those few days you were recovering I got a lot of sweet Alex snuggle time. You even fell asleep in my lap once.

That face! Those cheeks! Anyway, within a couple of days you were feeling much better. We were even able to put up the Christmas tree later that weekend.

Later that night you showed off your walking skills… yes I said WALKING. Ohhh my goodness. You still have a ways to go, but as of a few weeks ago  you officially started taking a few unassisted steps here & there. It started as just one or two steps followed by a face plant (haha), but as I write this you’re up to about 4-5 steps at a time. Makin’ moves! Unfortunately it happens so sporadically that we have yet to get it on video.

Look ma, no hands! 😉

This is my favorite picture of you currently. Look at that sweet smile! 😀

Mommy & Alex being silly. Notice the kiss pic on the right– you did that on your own! Every so often you get in a “kissy” mood, but for the most part you aren’t into it. So far only me and your daycare lady get kisses. Dad gets waves from you though… that’s your special thing with him. You’re learning new stuff all the time!

Anyway, not long after that we got our first big snow of the season! Dad & I both ended up having an extra day off of work, and enjoyed staying home to play with you in the snow. 🙂 Your first snow experience was exactly how I thought it would be… as with everything else you come across, you wanted to eat the snow! Haha

Then just a couple days later, you got to have even more fun at your first “concert” — Sesame Street Live!

You were such a good boy at the concert… honestly better than I thought you’d be. 😉 I think because it was so late and you were starting to get sick again, you were pretty tired & content to sit in my lap most of the time and just watch the show.

Sick AGAIN, you ask? Yes. This time both you and I came down with a terrible cold/flu bug. It lasted over two weeks, prompting me to take you to the doctor twice (where they said your ears were still a little infected on top of having this “monster cold,” putting you back on antibiotics) and to take myself to the doctor once. Your pediatrician said that I should expect you to get sick in some form or fashion pretty much every 2 weeks or so during this first winter in daycare. :-\  Oy! And of course it’s tough enough when you’re sick, but having us both sick (and miserably bed-ridden sick on top of that, at least for me) made things really difficult around the Pacheco house for awhile. Dad had to work a lot of overtime during that period as well, but he still did his best to take care of us & keep the household running. We just ended up eating a LOT of takeout. 😉 Bless his heart! Despite being sick, of course I still took you for a quick trip to see Santa…

You were actually pretty cool with Santa for about 10 seconds, and then…

Call the WAAAAAmbulance! Not really, you kind of whimpered for a minute or so, then calmed down & got over it. In the end, you & Santa had a nice chat. 🙂 A decent first Santa experience, overall!

So when the time finally came to go back down to Hampton for Christmas, the home-cooked meals were most welcome after all that takeout. Fortunately you & I were feeling much better by Christmas… it was a VERY busy day (as it always is for us, running back & forth between the two sides of the family), but it was also so much fun!  We had a nice time hanging out with some extended family on Christmas Eve:

Then started off Christmas day with presents and breakfast with the Stoddards.

One of the Stoddard’s Christmas traditions is that every year on Christmas Eve we get matching pajamas to wear that night– one set for the boys and a different set for the girls. That’s what we wear when we open up gifts and have breakfast the next morning too. Here you are with the other fellas in your very first set of Christmas jammies! 🙂

Grandma always makes a couple of delicious breakfast casseroles for us. You gobbled them right up! 🙂 After breakfast you took a quick nap, then we headed over to Nana & Grump’s for the Pacheco festivities.

Opening presents with Auntie Sheena! Not surprisingly, you were VERY spoiled at both houses. Our car was FULL of presents!

I love this picture of you with your cousin Shayla! Later that night we had Christmas dinner with the Pachecos, just before we had to head home. You enjoyed Nana’s green beans and playing with your cousins. 🙂 Overall, I’d say Christmas was much more of a success than Thanksgiving! You even got a couple extra “gifts” that none of us bargained for…

More teeth! FOUR of your top teeth popped through just before Christmas. They are pretty much all the way out now, and you are putting little teeth marks on everything, every chance you get. :-\ I attributed the teeth to being the reason you woke up with a little fever after your afternoon nap on New Year’s Eve, just before it was time for us to head to a “black tie baby” party with my working mom’s group. We gave you some Tylenol & you had a nice time nonetheless!

You looked SO cute and dapper in your little suit! You had fun crawling/walking around & hanging out with friends:

That last photo is blurry, but I thought it was funny that you were macking on the girls! 😉 Unfortunately, you did not think much of your party hat…

LOL. Despite that, I would say that you rang in the new year with style! 🙂 A couple days after that I had to take you to the doctor AGAIN because of a crazy rash you got that won’t go away (it’s still there actually & itching you like crazy, poor guy!), and to have your ears re-checked since you were still waking up a lot at night, being fussy and had that fever New Year’s Eve. They didn’t know what the rash was, but it turns out your ear infection had never gone away. 😦 They put you on stronger meds this time and said that if this doesn’t work, you’ll have to see an ENT specialist. Yikes! The new meds seem to be helping… sort of. Your sleep at night is still pretty messed up, but I don’t know if it’s the ears or the itchy rash keeping you awake. Either way, we go back to the doctor in about a week to check up on all that. It’s always something! :-\

Here are a few other pictures from the last 6 weeks or so… as always, there are TONS more at  http://s1169.photobucket.com/user/laurapachec0/library/Alex%20Month%2011.

Hanging out with Dad. 🙂

Some great pictures with Papa & Grandma, also taken on Christmas.

Funny faces! 😛 I take so many pictures in your high chair simply because it’s one of the few places where you’re forced to stay (relatively) still for a few minutes. LOL

11 months! Taken a little late since we were both sick on your actual 11 month birthday, but better late than never. Rolling around while I take these pictures is now your favorite game. When I flip you back over the giggle like crazy, and I end up with a lot of pictures like this:

Which are also adorable but not what I was originally going for! Haha. Since we’re getting down to the wire with these monthly photos (only ONE left to go now… :’-( ), I took a video to document just how crazy/difficult the experience of taking these monthly pics has been since you’ve become mobile.

Phew! Sorry for all the screaming. When you are full of spit & vinegar like that, you LOVE to hear yourself scream. :-\ Haha. Anyway, so ends another mammoth letter! I’ll be back in a few weeks to tell you all about how your first birthday went. Right now Dad & I are in the throes of birthday party preparations.  I can’t believe you’re about to turn one already! This past year has truly flown by. Until next time Alex– we love you SO much! :-*

All my love,
Mom

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