This is the amazing story of our micro preemie, John Craig. He was born on November 30, 2005 at 24 weeks and 5 days gestation. He weighed 1 pound 8 ounces and was 12 inches long. John is a true miracle and an inspiration to all that meet him!
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.
Jeremiah 29.11

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Goooooooo Devils!




Yes, it is 100 degrees in Arizona and yes, my son is wearing a thermal long sleeved onesie but, true fans make sacrifices. I keep thinking back to the last game we went to. It was the day after Thanksgiving and I just turned 24 weeks in my pregnancy. I was feeling great and LOVING being pregnant. And then, just 5 days later John was born. I mean, I could understand going into labor if we would have lost to UofA but we WON!!!!!

Anyhow, Jamie took the day off yesterday so I could go to work. Sure enough, John kept all his food down AND took 3 LONG naps. One of which was 3 hours. I had to wake him up from that one because I needed to give him his bath and put him down for bed an hour later. Thankfully he still went to bed at 6:00pm.

Jamie thinks it's hilarious.....he's hired!

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Pictures!


Yummy...sweet potatoes!!!

Supposed to be napping!


My old man poker playing pimp! Craig, doesn't he remind you of Grandpa? I swear Grandpa had the same hat or maybe it was plaid pants:)

My brave little man after his blood tests. Lookin cute as always!

Sleepy.........after a long day.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

NAP...& Other Stuff!

John has been napping since 2:15pm and it's now 4:30pm and he's still asleep. This is GREAT!!!!! Now, watch he won't go to bed tonight.

UPDATE (7:30pm):
Well, he slept until about 4:45 and he still went down at 6:00pm. Good job John!

On another note, we went to the GI Dr. today and all is well. He weighs 15lbs 13oz. We are going to put rice cereal in his milk at night to thicken it up in hopes that he will keep more of it down. He didn't eat much of his rice cereal and sweet potatoes (not surprising) at lunch so I put the rest in his milk and put it through his tube. Maybe that is why he slept so long and didn't throw up. We'll see how tonight goes. He also had some blood work done today while we were at PCH. Usually I have to take him to a different Sonoran Quest lab (which is not used to working with preemies)because PCH will only draw blood if one of their Doctors write the prescription. Anyhow, I nicely asked our GI Doctor if he would re-write the order from our pediatrician.......and he did!!!!! I can't believe it but he didn't even cry. He is such a brave little boy. Much braver than I am.

And, some exciting news.........John had his first social outing yesterday.
We started the day with some sweet potatoes. I told him we were practicing for Thanksgiving and if we were lucky Aunt Alli would make her delicious sweet potatoes (the only ones I like...LOVE.) That is if she and Uncle Craig are here......we hope so:):):) After breakfast Grams came over to take the two of us to lunch. I asked her to put him down for a nap before we left. I came in his room to see if he was asleep and he wasn't.....he realized that Grams was holding him and he looked up at her with a huge smile. Grams started to giggle and then so did John. I know that it made her day...........she's still talking about it! Anyhow, he finally took a short nap and then off to Kierland we went. Of course we sat outside.....away from EVERYONE. He looked so cute. I had a cute outfit and matching hat on him. Jamie and I decided he looked somewhere between an old man, poker player, and a pimp. I'll post pictures tomorrow. The lunch was wonderful and I felt human again being out in public. John was a good boy other than popping the minute we got there. All in all we had a fun day. Thanks Mom! Lunch next week?

Monday, September 25, 2006

Monday




Happy Monday!!!!

We only have a few appointments this week. We see the GI doctor on Wednesday and our usually PT on Thursday.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Weekend Pictures

THE MOHAWK


"MOM, STOP!"



Now, what kind of mom would I be if I didn't take the infamous Mohawk picture?

ATTACK OF THE MOOSE
Correction:
ATTACK OF THE HORSE (My mom informed me that the animal was a horse and not a moose. Horse....Moose.....same difference.)


"Help!"


"Ahhhhhh, he's got me!"


"Just kidding."

MY HAPPY BOY




Don't you love the onesie......so appropriate. Thanks Joe and Shelly!

Long Nap

I was so excited yesterday because John took a 2 hour nap.......I was holding him though. Anyhow, it was kind of warm in his room so we were a little sweaty, so I thought. When he woke up from his nap I laid him down on his changing table to change his diaper....low and behold the two of us were soaked with milk. His tube had come out of his button so his entire feed was all over us. Again, only something I would do:):):)

And, that nap the other day........only 30 minutes. I didn't even get to finish my Red Bull....or pick up the house!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Butterfly's Wings

Butterfly's Wings
Author Unknown

One day a small opening appeared on a cocoon, a man sat and watched for the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to force its body through that little hole. Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it had gotten as far as it could and it could go no further. So the man decided to help the butterfly, he took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bit of the cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily. But it had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings.

The man continued to watch the butterfly because he expected that, at any moment, the wings would enlarge and expand to be able to support the body, which would contract in time. Neither happened! In fact, the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never was able to fly. What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand was that the restricting cocoon and the struggle required for the butterfly to get through the tiny opening were God's way of forcing fluid from the body of the butterfly into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it achieved its freedom from the cocoon.

Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our life. If God allowed us to go through our life without any obstacles, it would cripple us. We would not be as strong as what we could have been. We could never fly.

I asked for Strength...
And God gave me Difficulties to make me strong.

I asked for Wisdom...
And God gave me Problems to solve.

I asked for Prosperity...
And God gave me a Brain and Brawn to work.

I asked for Courage...
And God gave me Danger to overcome.

I asked for Love...
And God gave me Troubled people to help.

I asked for Favors...
And God gave me Opportunities.



WEIGHT CHECK...........15 pounds 10 ounces!!!!!
I am hoping for my birthday I get a 16 pound baby. It's a possibility:)

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

OCD

I have a little OCD (what preemie mom doesn't) with the scale and all. Today's weight check is.......15 pounds 6 ounces. If he keeps this up he's going to be a tank come his adjusted birthday (March 17th.) I know, I know, it'll slow down once he becomes mobile but he's still gaining wonderfully. I can't even imagine how big he'd be if he weren't vomiting so much.

UPDATE: It is now 2:00pm and I just suffered/cried through a half hour of John crying but he is now officially down for a nap. The boy will not nap which means I don't get anything done. I tried yesterday but after 45 minutes I couldn't take it anymore so I went in and got him. Does this get easier????? We have the nighttime routine down pat it's just the naps that are a problem. I am off to drink a Red Bull........Oh, how I've missed them......and try to pick the house up before he wakes up.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Moment of Silence

Please take a moment of silence for my beloved breast pump. She was officially laid to rest today. I am free at last......and just in time for my 30th birthday!

We are once again doing the preemie two step. Two steps forward, one step back. John has formed tissue granulation around his button so we are headed back to the surgeon to have it burned off. It shouldn't be to bad......nothing a little Tylenol (with codeine) can't fix. My poor baby:(



My happy little man. OHHHHHHH, I love him so incredibly much!


Sound asleep in his big boy crib.......and it's only 5:30pm!

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Update

Daddy and John did a lot of playing today so I could take a much needed nap. When I woke up this is what I found.....




The next time I checked on John I found him watching the LSU game. Now, there would be some serious problems if I found him watching the U of A game!!!!



Eating pears.....I mean attempting to eat pears.



Sitting in his Bumbo seat. His neck muscles still aren't very strong so he looks like a little bobble head.



We have a plumber in the house!

John is finally sleeping in his own bedroom.....with us camped out in the guest room across the hall:) He has been sleeping in a crib in our room for the past 6 months. Yes, I said 6 months. Can you believe he will be 6 months adjusted tomorrow? Anyhow, we were skeptical about putting him in his room because we have a split floor plan and his room is on the other side of the house. With all of his vomiting at night we are constantly getting up and checking on him. It made it much easier when he was in our room. However, the crib in our room was getting too small. He looked like a little pea in it when we brought him home and now if he turns sideways his head touches one end and his toes touch the other......a good sign that he needs to be in his own crib.

Weight check is...........15 pounds 3 ounces!

Monday, September 11, 2006

Another Post

Two posts in 1 day, pretty good.

This week isn't too hectic. We have Speech tomorrow, see the surgeon on Wednesday, and PT on Thursday. I am going to try to get him into OT (occupational therapy) soon. I just need to find one that comes to the home since RSV season will be here before we know it. I also need to find a Speech Therapist that will come to the home. I LOVE his Speech Therapist now but we have to take him to her clinic and with RSV/flu season coming our pediatrician thinks we need to avoid going anywhere. Wait, don't we already do that??????

So, the vomiting was a little better today. I hope I didn't just jinx myself. Pray that the night feed goes well also. The GI doctor switched him to a new formula called NeoCate. Yes, unfortunately he is on formula. The deep freeze, with ALL my breast milk in it died. I am still pumping but I don't get nearly enough milk. Anyhow, this new formula is expensive and he goes through 2 1/2 cans a week. His food costs more than our grocery bill for the week. Thank goodness for insurance......VERY good insurance. Luckily, Cigna pays 100% of it. We call John our 2 maybe even 3 million dollar baby.



Who would have ever thought that Mr. 24 Weeker would have dimples on his butt.....it's so cute. Aren't naked baby bottoms the best?


Clean baby! John loves his baths. I used to put his tub on the counter and bath him but he splashes so much.....the counter, the floor, and MYSELF would be drenched. Now, I put his tub in our bathtub so he can splash away.

It's Official

It's official........our little man (well, not so little anymore), weighs exactly 15 pounds today. I didn't expect him to hit 15 pounds until the end of the week especially since he spent the last two nights vomited everything. Hey, who cares how he gained it.......he did it! Yippie!!!!!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

BIG Boy

He's almost there..........14 pounds 9 ounces. Maybe I shouldn't have bought this baby scale.....I am obsessed! If he keeps this up, he'll be 15 pounds by the end of the week. When we were in the NICU, 15 pounds seemed so out of reach and now here we are. It just goes to show the power of prayers. Thank you to everyone who has continued to pray for him. He's our miracle!

Friday, September 08, 2006

Good Morning



John is definitely a morning person. He always wakes up with a big smile. He is smiling especially big this morning because he kept down 14 ounces last night........just one tiny throw up.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Pictures!


Look at that chubby boy!


Standing tall.......he loves to stand. His legs are so strong.


Talking up a storm.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

6 More!

Six more ounces to go until John reaches 15 pounds. I have no idea how he is gaining weight considering everything he eats comes right back up.

We went to the pediatrician today for his 9 month check up. He now weighs 14 pounds 9 ounces. I guess he shrunk because last week he was 25 inches long and today he's 24 inches!!!!!

The pediatrician was pleased with his progress. She reiterated the importance of keeping him away from kids, crowds, and sick people this winter. Hibernation, here we come! Wait a minute, we haven't come out of hibernation.

He'll get blood work for his liver panel next week, a flu shot at the end of the month, a shot to prevent RSV in October, and his 12 month shots in November. Poor guy.

Just trying to keep him healthy!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Baby Kisses


John loves to give kisses and of course I kiss him all day long. To his future girlfriends: Asia, Grace, and Paloma, beware.........he likes to slip the tongue! However, I told him no kissing until he's 16!


"I hate throwing up."


We went the entire night with no throw up. Yeah!!!! Don't get too excited though, he made up for it today.

I called the GI doctor to let him know what was going on and he said we can put him on some medicine that will help him digest quicker. The down side is, it could cause asthma. Ummmmmm.....I'll deal with throw up.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Cute As Ever


The boys!



He's still throwing up but looking cute as ever.

You can tell by the pictures that he really is cross eyed. I bumped his ophthalmologist appointment up to the end of October. The Dr. is 90% certain that he will need the surgery so I want to get it done with before RSV season. There is no way I am taking him in a hospital during RSV season. That is just asking for it!!!! Hey, I won't even take him anywhere now and it's not RSV season.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

I Lied

Ok...I lied about John feeling all better. I thought he was but then the throwing up started and it hasn't stop:( His Grammy (Jamie's mom) bought him some new PJ's and he liked them so much that he wore all 5 pairs last night. Remember, he gets continuous feeds at night and I am not sure why he isn't tolerating them. He threw up in the middle of the night so I changed him. Two minutes later he throws up again and I change him again....and so forth until he had tired on all of his new PJ's. I think he was just so excited about his new clothes that he wanted to wear them all.

Please pray that the throwing up stops!

Friday, September 01, 2006

My Baby's Back



John is finally completely back to himself as of today. All pain meds are out of his system and he's feeling good. He even had a little bit of tummy time today and his button didn't seem to bother him. He's a champ!

By the way, he now weighs in at 14lbs 6oz. Pretty darn good considering he didn't eat for 24 hours after surgery and he still isn't up to full feeds.

I forgot to mention a conversation that took place between me and a nurse prior to surgery.......a total Jill moment.

Nurse: We are going to take John back and weigh him before surgery.
Jill: I just bought a scale and weighed him at home this morning.
Nurse: Oh, how much was it?
Jill: $80.00
Nurse: No, I meant how much did he weigh.
Jill: Oh, right.