Furlough (Furcation) Day 2: Cardiology Follow Up

May 23, 2012 at 1:23 PM | Posted in Baby Romaezi | 1 Comment
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Day 2 of furlough started with a cardiology appointment at 8:45 am for Kamran. I obviously scheduled an early appointment to accommodate my work day. When I chose this week as my furlough week I decided to let the early appointment stand and I’m glad I did. It was nice to still have a full day.

We went to the cardiologist yesterday to check on Kamran’s ASD. He was born with an ASD (Atrial Septal Defect), PDA (Patent Ductus Arteriosos) and PPS (Peripheral Pulmonary Stenosis). The PDA resolved in the NICU and PPS had resolved by the time he was 2 months, his last follow up at the cardiologist. At the 2 month follow up the ASD shrunk but was still there. Our good news yesterday? The ASD has completely resolved! It’s gone. No more heart follow ups, no more EKGs and no more echocardiograms! I have to say though, Kamran really liked this particular cardiologist. So much so that he followed him out of the office when the appointment was over.

After the cardiologist, we went to visit with Aunt Nikki and her mommy. Aunt Nikki has 3 dogs, and Xander, the teacup yorkie just LOVED the pint sized human who is Kamran. Kamran loved him back. The first 20 minutes of our visit was filled with a curious, hoppy puppy and a belly laughing baby. Eventually Nikki and Mrs. Rita pulled out lots of loot they were prepared to spoil Kamran with. Books, a reading toy and…a huge, fun car for Kamran to ride in. We drove him around the living room a bit and then he took over and did the pushing. After all of that fun was had we went to lunch at one of my favorite taco places. TIPPYS! It was good to catch up with family yesterday. Kam had fun, I did too…and Kamran went to bed an entire hour early. We wore his butt out!!

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Furlough (Furcation) Day 1

May 23, 2012 at 8:00 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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I didn’t know the definition of the word furlough when I first entered the work force. I’m not sure how I escaped SAT prep or college without that piece of knowledge. My first job out of college was for a newspaper company so I learned the definition. I still work for the same company, though I have changed roles a few times so I’m furloughed this week. Furlough is mandatory unpaid leave for those of you who have heard the word but never needed to look it up, much like I experienced.

This makes me a temporary stay at home mommy for the week! I know, I know. One week is hardly a taste of what it is like to be a stay at home mom but I’m really looking forward to spending quality time with my little man.

On my first day of furlough two amazing things happened. Kamran slept in…and my alarm didn’t go off. Now if that happened on any ordinary Monday in our house I would be a horrible, rushed, grumpy mess. Today, I was well rested and happy. In fairness, Kamran did wake at 4 am but that’s still semi-normal in this house so it’s no big.

The plan for day 1 was for Kamran to go to daycare so I could catch up on the housework I can’t do easily with him at home. I’m way behind on anything cleaning, organization or home related. I still dont’ feel like I’ll ever catch up from being away for 3 months while I was in the hospital. I can only imagine what good it would have done my house by having the ability to “nest.”

Back to the daycare thing. Kamran only spent 2 days at daycare last week so I want to make sure he doesn’t forget what it’s like. Besides, I still have to pay whether he goes or not. So go he did. Though I took him in late and Kayvan brought him home early. Of course, I had planned for Kayvan to drop Kamran off at daycare per usual so I could just clean. Since Kam slept that didn’t happen. I also didn’t stick to the rest of my plan. The grocery store is across the street from daycare so I made a grocery run. As I was leaving the grocery store I made a last second right turn into Target (with its evil red eye) and bought a new steam mop. I was planning to clean today after all. The thing is AWESOME. However, this is a week of unpaid leave so I hang my head in shame. I guess after spending 6 years together Kayvan’s impulsive ways are rubbing off on me just a bit. But did I mention the steam mop is AWESOME?! I vow to clean my hardwood floors once a week. We all know that vow will quickly be forgotten, right.

So I started the first furlough day off financially in the hole but my floors are clean, so is the top floor of my house. Kamran’s clothes that are too small have been sorted, folded and put away as well. Organizing things tends to be a time sink for me so perhaps I’ll clean tomorrow during nap time.

Kayvan got home early with Kamran. We grilled sausage, zucchini and corn. Kamran didn’t touch the zucchini but ate close to an entire ear of corn. Our neighbor stopped by for a few minutes to chat afterward so I let Kamran finish drinking his milk on the floor and out of his highchair, something I normally don’t do. That’s when another really awesome thing happened. Kamran decided to walk. Like really walk! Not 3 steps and sitting in a very controlled manner. He took 8 whole steps. Then he realized what he was doing and decided it was a really bad idea–because, you know. He wants to be carried for the rest of his life.

Keep your eyes peeled for tonights incredibly exciting update about Furlough Day 2. Kamran visits the cardiologist (hoping for good news) then my step sister, Nikki.

Cooking for Kam: Cottage Cheese and Strawberries

May 22, 2012 at 7:20 PM | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Since I’m home today, Kamran and I shared our snack. We had strawberries and cottage cheese. It was super quick, easy, healthy and filling.

I never liked cottage cheese until recently. Before you say “Ew that stuff is gross!” like I used to, I encourage you to try organic cottage cheese. I promise it tastes good. I agree that non-organic cottage cheese is naaaaaaasty.

This is more a suggestion blog than recipe since it’s so simple. Add diced strawberry to a few scoops of cottage cheese, stir and enjoy. For those of you who haven’t done strawberries with your little one yet you can really substitute any fruit.

Our Second Annual March for Babies

May 9, 2012 at 8:00 AM | Posted in Baby Romaezi | 1 Comment
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Kamran is only 13 months old and has now officially participated in two March of Dimes walks.  This past weekend was the March of Dimes March for Babies annual walk.  This year we recruited friends and family to join us!  I want to share a special thank you to the friends and family who walked with us this year.  It meant more than you will ever know.  Same goes to the friends and family who sponsored us by making donations to the March of Dimes.

Last year Kayvan and I took Kamran and participated in the March for Babies together for the first time.  We raised $180 between the two of us in only a matter of a few weeks.  With more time this year, we were determined to do better.  This year Kayvan and I raised $1,225 between the two of us AND had a few friends join in on the fundraising fund.  I am proud to share that I raised over $1000 making me a March for Babies top walker.  With the joint effort of our family and friends, we raised a combined total of $3,080 for the IFHC – NICU March for Babies team.  Our friend Beth who joined us also raised over $1,000 as well.  Beth and I were so proud of the funds we raised that we decided to branch out and form our own family team next year.  That means you can expect lemonade stands, bake sales, perhaps a Loopsi Daisy hat promo and lots of donation requests going out to local businesses we frequent–in addition to all of the fundraising efforts we typically put in with our friends.

I remember last year’s walk was super emotional for me.  This year the emotions were a little easier to manage with friends joining us.  It probably also helped that friends read the tribute signs along the route before I did and would say “Don’t read that one, it’s sad!”  At one point a friend told me not to read a sign moments after I heard a woman say, “Oh here is our sign.”  I of course read it and asked another friend if it was too late to give the woman a hug.  Her baby had anacephaly and was born in silence.  5 days later she lost her husband.  I didn’t know how to react after I read her sign knowing it was hers and she was standing right next to me for at least 1/4 mile.  The walk certainly helps us keep perspective on just how fortunate we are.  Yes, we were dealt a tough hand at the start but everyone is healthy today–and that is what matters.

Here is a photo of the 3 of us at the end of the walk.

The finish line! Our second March for Babies Walk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More photos are here:  http://theromaezis.smugmug.com/Friends/March-for-Babies-2012/22878578_RGc7RX#!i=1837158780&k=SdkR4NS

 

Cooking for Kam: Solving for Slimy Finger Food

May 8, 2012 at 12:00 PM | Posted in Baby Food | 3 Comments
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Wheat Germ is my favorite secret mommy ingredient. It is packed full of nutrients and easy to hide in most food (like the veggie nuggets I’ll share later in the week). Another use I have found for wheat germ is that it can be used to make slimy food a little less slimy…and a lot easier for little fingers to grab.

Kamran loves butternut squash and it was no problem to feed to him as a purée. When we switched to finger food he got really frustrated chasing it around his tray. So I would cook, cube then coat in wheat germ–problem solved. I typically put the food into a bowl, sprinkle wheat germ on and shake it around until well coated. No cooking required.

Last night Kamran had avocado as part of his meal. Yet another slimy finger food made less slimy thanks to wheat germ.

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Cooking for Kam: Breaded Eggplant

May 2, 2012 at 12:00 PM | Posted in Baby Food | Leave a comment
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I’ll be the first to admit, I do not like eggplant. That won’t keep me from feeding it to my kid. It is so full of nutrients and healthy that I decided to at least try it on him. I know that once cooked, frozen then defrosted and reheated (what it takes to cook ahead) eggplant can get mushy. That is why I wanted to try the breaded route. The results were a smash hit.

The eggplant I bought was enormous so the recipe below is for a very large eggplant.

Ingredients
1 eggplant
3 medium (or 2 large eggs)
1 cup milk
1.5 cups bread crumbs
1.5 cups wheat germ
Pinch salt, pepper, parsley (optional)

You can peel the eggplant if you like. This is optional but I read that eggplant skin can be hard for little tummies to digest. That said, I peeled mine. Slice eggplant into approx 1/4 inch slices. Since the eggplant I got was so huge, I also cut the slices in half. Admittedly, I used my food processor to do the slicing.

You will need 3 separate bowls for dunking. Fill 1 bowl with beaten egg, another with milk and the last with the bread crumb and wheat germ and optional spices combined. I don’t typically cook with salt or pepper for Kamran so I did without the optional spice.

Take your slice of eggplant and first dunk into the beaten egg, then breadcrumb/wheat germ. Once you have applied this first coat, dunk into milk then bread crumb/wheat germ again. Repeat this for each slice.

There are a few ways to cook this. My preferred method for Kamran is to heat a skillet, spray with cooking spray and cook eggplant for 3 to 4 minutes each side until cooked through. Using the skillet means I can cook as I prep and it seems to take less time this way.

If you prefer, you can bake or deep fry. Of course, I can’t advocate deep fried food for a baby but I think it’s a fair method for an adult who doesn’t like eggplant much.

My son shocked me with how much he likes this recipe. He ate 6 slices in one sitting the first time I cooked it. Normally he eats about 3 slices with another food option combined.

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