Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Serious Post About SIDS

This topic was on my mind a lot when I was expecting our first little bundle of joy, and it is equally as important to me now.  Although no one really knows what causes a healthy baby to stop breathing, I also feel that there are some risks that aren't worth taking. Some people blame crib bumpers for SIDS although I have read several blog stories about infants dying of SIDS where bumpers did not seem to be a factor.  I did have a crib bumper for my son who is now 4. The crib bumper wasn't really for decorative purposes. I felt that it helped keep him safe and comfortable. Without a crib bumper, there is still a risk that a baby can fall or at least get his face buried between the edge of the mattress and crib sides...even with an appropriate fitting mattress.  I actually tied the bumper tightly with knots and also squished it into the tiny space between his mattress and crib rails so there was never a hole he could "fall" into. Trust me, that thing wasn't going anywhere! When he started sleeping in his crib between 5 and 6 months, we made sure the crib mattress was lowered so he couldn't climb out...he never did! I was very afraid of SIDS, and I utilized a few options to ease my mind.


1. I kept him in my room next to my bed (not co-sleeping with me though) for more than four months in a large bassinet. From what I have read, having them in your room is one of the safest places they can be.

2. I also purchased the Angelcare Sensor pad monitor system which seemed to be the best SIDS preventive device on the market. Although we never had an incident, I knew it worked because I "checked" it all the time. If he was taken out of his bed and the monitor was not turned off, the alarm would sound within seconds so theoretically the same thing would have happened if he had stopped breathing or moving.  It would definitely have woken me up...heck, it would wake up the dead!  I just purchased another one for the new baby since ours is now four years old, and we still use the sound monitor in Evan's room. 

3. I kept the room temperature cool and used a fan to help with air circulation. Overheating is also thought to be a contributing factor of SIDS.

4. I never swaddled my baby at night. I believe that the "startle" reflex is a baby's natural instinct to wake themselves up in an "emergency." Actually from what I have read, swaddling is also thought to be a major contributing factor of SIDS. I would dress him comfortably for bed...mostly in an infant gown. He was a Spring/Summer baby so he didn't need blankets for warmth.

5. I prayed all the time for my baby's safety. Perhaps this is the best option we have!

Monday, March 28, 2011

36 Weeks ~ One more month!

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I decided to use this picture of me pretending to be a Panthers cheerleader for the 36 week shot.  As you can see, I am quite literally "as big as a house."  And yet, I still doubt Brody has very much room in there to move around.  We wonder if Brody will be significantly bigger than his brother who only weighed 6 lbs. 4 oz.  Mommy felt like she was so big with Evan, but she definitely feels bigger this time...and has the stretch marks to prove it.  Oh brother!  We are all getting so excited to meet this little guy, but Mommy is probably the most impatient.  Babycenter.com says that Brody is gaining about an ounce a day and may weigh around six pounds now and be around 18 and a half inches long.  Brody will be considered full term next week and will hopefully be moving into the head down position to prepare to enter the world.  I am pretty much just feeling tired all the time now.  I am not sleeping well, I move very slow, my back hurts a lot (not sure if it is Braxton Hicks contractions or just back pain from being so big now), I get short of breath a lot, all food seems to give me heartburn, and I swear I have baby brain!  While all these symptoms are not pleasant, I am so very thankful for this wonderful experience and can't wait to meet this precious little miracle!

Evan the Panther is 4!

Yep, we did it!  We celebrated Evan's 4th birthday with a big bash at Panther stadium.  His party was actually on his birthday this year too.  He is a lucky little boy for sure!  It was a cold, dreary day, but all the kids seemed to have a good time touring the stadium and meeting Sir Purr.  We ended up setting up in the big, empty concrete basement of the stadium so the party pictures may look a little strange.  It was about 40 degrees upstairs in the concourse where Sir Purr's Playden is so we didn't think the kids would enjoy being so cold while eating cake. 

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The entrance to the stadium.


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The table and decor.  Mommy made the huge birthday pennant banner in Panther's colors.  It was huge but still looked small in this huge concrete room. 


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What party is complete without balloons?


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The food table. 


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The awesome cake that matched Evan's jersey.  The number 4 is Evan's age and also his favorite player, John Kasay.  He's a christian and the kicker which is probably the only position Evan could play because of his size! 


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Special football cookies made by Mommy.


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And some "E" and "4" cookies too.


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Here's the birthday boy!


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On the tour, we got to see the Top Cat's locker room which is similar to the Panther's locker room except a little smaller and has huge mirrors so the girls can primp and practice dance moves. 


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Mommy the pregnant Panthers cheerleader! 


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The Panther's locker room is private and visitors aren't allowed in.


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It was a dreary day at Panther stadium, but we love this city!  That's the new Duke Energy building in the background.  It displays a cool light show at night. 


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Some of the party guests got to see the entrance to the field. 


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"Go Panthers!"


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The luxury suites...now this is the life!  $10,000 a pop!


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Evan says he can get used to this. 


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The field looks strange with no lines on it. 


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The sports broadcast room.


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The kids pretend to be sports broadcasters.


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Nope, the luxury bar wasn't open for the adult guests!  ;-)


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Panther's official uniforms.


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Sir Purr joins the party!


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And tries to steal our cookies!


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Sir Purr and Evan in matching jerseys.


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Cousin Emma liked Sir Purr too.


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Evan liked squeaking Sir Purr's paw.


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Evan's pal Bryant is one of the biggest fans.


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Some of the guests with Sir Purr.  We did have a few that were scared.


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Sir Purr brought out his Scream Machine.  Something was moving in there, but all we saw were some nice gifts for the birthday boy.


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Mommy and Baby Brody with Sir Purr.


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Nana gives Sir Purr a big hug.


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Cousin Emma catches a pass from Sir Purr.


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Little Reade even gets in on the fun.


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Sir Purr tries to run away with the cake!  Daddy says, "No, Sir Purr, you can't take that!"


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Sir Purr sheepishly admits he has had too many sweets.


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A special sign for Evan.


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Evan and his friends wait for cake.


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Sweet birthday boy!


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Yay for cake!


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Aunt Naomi and Nader watch the fun.


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Nana, Uncle Paul, and Aunt Jessica enjoy the party while cousins Lanny and Reade enjoy eating cake.


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Opening presents.


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Emma is always a big help opening presents.  She had Evan opening them so fast we couldn't keep up.


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He did pause for a picture.


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Evan got so many great boy presents...superheroes and transformers were definitely the popular theme because everyone knows Evan so well!


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He's so sweet.


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A picture with Grandma before she has to leave.


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And a picture with Grandma, Aunt Naomi, and "Uncle" Nader too.


Video:  Singing Happy Birthday to the birthday boy.  Love how he started out singing along to himself and how he kept backing away from Sir Purr.  Also gotta love how we let kids "blow" all over the birthday cake.  Yikes! 

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