Friday, April 27, 2012

Windy walk

After dinner tonight (where Rafi tried some spaghetti, though not the nice sauce I made) we all headed out for a quick walk around the block. Raf insisted on running with his blue ball and so of course, running flat out, fell over twice. He shook himself off and then went on running again until we hit the wind. Goodness, it was really windy. Raf had enough of trying to run into the wind and instead got me to carry him home while he hid his head in my shoulder.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

New Likes

I've been look at some of Raf's old photos this evening and it's so shocking that he was once so tiny! What a sweetheart, but he is just getting so big nowadays.

Raf has some new likes:

1) Pocoyo - a very weird Spanish cartoon, with the English version narrated by Stephen Fry. If you have never come across this strange show then youtube an episode. You won't be the same again.

2) Pumpkin seeds. "More seeds, please mummy",

3) Rice - and he even had some quinoa yesterday.

4) Ice pops (actually this is an old like but it's lately been renewed).

5) Playing 'tea time'. This evening he ran into our bedroom shouting 'tea, tea, tea', waving a saucer in my face.

6) His new crocs - thank the Lord. He was fast growing out of his old ones and he was loathe to give them up.

We have tried to talk to him about having a little brother or sister. I say to him, "Rafi, what's in mummy's tummy?" And although he'll respond, 'A baby", we don't think he has an absolute clue.

Indeed Raf head-butted my tummy when lying in bed this morning. He didn't mean to, bless him, but when I went to get some blood work done at the midwives, I did mention it to the nurse I saw and a midwife came and did a quick doppler check to make sure nothing was awry. They must have heard how big Raf's head is! Everything seemed fine. it's hard to imagine that we have our anatomy scan in a couple of weeks.

Any guesses as to the sex? We were really wrong last time!

Sunday, April 22, 2012


I think I feel some flutters this evening. I remember writing this about Raf when I was 17 weeks along. I'm a little earlier than that and I think it's common to feel it all a bit earlier the next go around.

Bouncy Bouncy Bouncy

We had a very busy weekend and it culminated in a fun play date with Raf's good friends from his old nursery - Sawyer and his older brother Colby. The weather was quite awful today so we arranged to meet at a bouncy castle place where there are lots of huge bouncy structures with massive ladders and slides. Raf had already run around Target like a lunatic before we even got there, so I was a bit in awe of his endurance as he ran around and climbed and squealed for almost 2 solid hours. None of the video or pictures came out very well because mostly Raf was a blur, running here and there, with me helping him up some obscenely steep bouncy ladders.... Thankfully I don't have pictures of that!

Raf had a fab time with Sawyer and Colby, and Colby was so sweet in being a big cousin to Raf. He was helping him climb and then would wait for him so they could slide down together. S and C are such sweeties.

 What goes up...

Must come down.... 

A very fun day, and despite falling on his wrist and obtaining a bloody nose when some bigger boy bulldozed into him, Raf had so much fun. When we told him we had to go, though, he didn't put up much of a fight. He was utterly exhausted. I handed him an apple and sandwich as we walked out, and I've never seen him eat so quickly in all his life. He must have been starving. Another sandwich and a handful of pretzels in the car and then he zonked out...

Saturday, April 21, 2012


When we visit other people's homes who have kiddos around Raf's age, we're always struck by Raf's lack of toys. He does have a lot of trains but seems a bit lacking - especially in outdoor toys. I think the lack of doting grandparents nearby doesn't help. This morning, after gym class and a quick breakfast at Panera to feed Raf's hardworking muscles, we popped to a toy store to pick something up for the Poppet. I think mum was planning on buying him a scooter for his birthday, but we saw one today and thought we'd treat him. My biggest worry was that Raf would refuse to wear a helmet. He hates his old one, and of course that is miles too small now. Indeed we had to buy him a helmet for 5 year olds and up.

Much to our delight, when we got home with scooter and new helmet Raf actually put on the helmet himself and we didn't have to tie him down to fasten the strap. Wow. He had such a fun time going around the block, except that he wasn't into propelling it forward himself and instead had one of us push him most of the way!! I'm sure he'll get the hang of it quickly. I went for a little lie down later in the afternoon and I believe he had Rich out there again going around the block.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Raf is a toast addict. He loves any form of bread and will also eat almost any kind of topping - including hummus, avocado, all nut and seed butters, vegan cheese, and so on. Since I've been so poorly I've not had much ability to cook or to think about preparing food, and since Rich is no Delia Smith or Martha Stewart we have somewhat been lazy in feeding Raf. Indeed we have fed his toast addiction.

What's worse is that we stopped offering Raf foods that he turned his nose up to... which includes almost all fresh produce not snuck onto toast. Since I have been feeling a bit better Rich and I agreed that we need to make food more of a priority. We're not so anxious about nutrition as we are about Raf's narrowing taste-buds (especially since we get a lot of good stuff in Raf's shakes and also on the aforementioned toast). Rich and I were horribly fussy eaters growing up and we want Raf to enjoy a variety of delicious foods. While I like toast as much as the next person, there is more to food than wholemeal bread toasted with almond butter.

So this week we started to give foods that Raf has previously declined while offering less of his crunchy favourites. Much to our delight he's been trying lots of things that only a short time ago we completely ignored. Melon, strawberries, banana, corn and peas (an old favourite), tofurky, and tonight, shockingly, we started shoveling down rice. This was a bit of a shock as we've offered rice on so many occasions, and when he's dared try a bit he's seemed to hate the texture.

What a big boy.

All that said, last night Rich came home with some shopping and Raf saw a loaf of bread and immediately he started jumping up and down and frantically yelled 'more toast, more toast, more toast, please'. And then, in the middle of the night, when asleep, he started saying 'toast, toast'.

Clearly the love affair isn't over.

Look how much he loves his toast.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Big, little boy.

Poppet 1

Rafi is turning into such a big-little boy. Even his little chubby legs have started to disappear and instead he has these little thin preschooler legs which make him seem so much older. His speech is coming along quite well, though I think he is still struggling in some areas. For example, his nanny Dani was having a really difficult time with Raf's behavior a couple of weeks ago. We share Dani with some good friends who have two kiddos. Their oldest has excellent communications skills, and whilst she's a few months older than Raf, it can make it seem as though Raf is being not as cooperative as he might be. We chatted to Dani about it because while Raf is no angel, he is generally pretty cooperative and not especially defiant. It soon became clear to me that it was more to do with Raf not understanding what was being asked, so we worked on clarifying what needed to be communicated and it was as simple as using words that we use and that he's familiar with. For example, we say 'tidy up' and Dani usually says 'clean up'. To get Raf ready to leave the house we say, 'Raf, let's get in the car" and off he trots. These small suggestions have apparently made the world of difference.

Raf is also rising his little bike. He had so much fun this weekend going around the block.

He's even gone up in croc size! Slow down, little boy.

Poppet 2

Not much to report, though I have been feeling a bit better, which is very nice. I've even managed to get back to some running, rowing, and so forth. I do have to confess that a friend loaned me her home-doppler so I have been checking for a heartbeat fairly frequently. I feel very conflicted about it because I think the jury is out on how safe dopplers are but for sanity's sake it's good to be able to check on things from time to time.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Poppet 2

We really will have to rename this blog... Us and Poppets; Us and Poppet x 2 (thanks, Helen), or something else entirely.

I've just entered my 15th week and the due date is October 11th, which, when written in 'American' is 10/11/12. We're hoping this is an auspicious date!

I was seeing an RE (reproductive endocrinologist) because of our recent losses when we suddenly discovered we were expecting. To say we were anxious would be something of an understatement. I had my hCG beta levels checked, and everything looked good, and then we had a scan at 6 weeks and 5 days and the baby was measuring a couple of days ahead with a great heartbeat of 140. Both Rich and I felt a little more confident at that point, but, again, we'd seen heartbeats on scans before so we were still very wary about being happy or excited. At 8 weeks and 4 days - after some begging - I had another scan...

Once again the babe measured ahead with a super heartbeat. I wasn't able to actually look when we had the sonogram until the tech said it was safe to! It was such a relief.

So far this has been a really difficult pregnancy. Once again I've been suffering with some horrible hyperemesis. Apparently my thyroid is wonky and I have this rare (joyous) condition called something like Transient hyperthyroidism of hyperemisis gravidarum. It is so miserable, I can't quite describe it. But it's like having a constant stomach flu with accompanying major fatigue... for weeks and weeks on end. I am on meds, thank the Lord, but they don't take away the nausea and it sadly doesn't stop all of the vomiting. With Raf, while it got better as the pregnancy progressed, I was sick until the minute he was born. It looks as though this may be a repeat... Oh well. Honestly I can cope with it all as long as I feel somewhat okay that a baby will materialize at the end!

We do feel a little bit more confident after our 12 week NT scan, which we had a few weeks ago. This scan assesses risk for trisomy 18/21 (Downs). Because of my 'advanced maternal age', and because of our recent history, we opted for this scan along with with first trimester blood work. We met with a genetic counselor because we honestly weren't sure whether we should have the screening but I knew that if the results were okay then we'd feel a little better about things.

A lovely sonographer we met when I was pregnant with Raf was luckily able to do our scan that day, and everything looked super. The babe's nuchal fold measurement was 1.4mm (anything under 2.5mm at this point on looks good). The baby measured 12 weeks and 2 days, so still measuring ahead as Raf had done, and they were leaping about like a little kangaroo. I couldn't believe how much movement there was! It was so great to see. We had the blood work done and the following week we got a call from a lovely nurse, Megan, who happened to be our fantastic L and D nurse from when we had Raf (she moved jobs). Combined with the nuchal fold measurements, my age, and blood work our chances of having a baby with trisomy 18/21 went down to 1:10,000, which is about as low as it gets. Again, such a relief since on age alone the risk is something like 1:300.

A few weeks on and I am still pretty sick but also so happy that everything so far looks okay. We also transferred our care from an OBs office to a fantastic midwife group. Deb, sadly, no longer delivers at Mercy so we had to find someone new since Mercy is so much more baby friendly and much less biomedical than the other hospital in the city (mind you, that hospital's birthing center is also really great, so we have very viable choices).

We had our first appointment yesterday and really it was a wonderful experience. By a cruel twist of fate I have a stomach bug, which on top of the hyperemesis is horrendous, but I made it to the appointment and was glad I did. We heard the baby's heartbeat nice and clearly and everything continues to look fine.

Fingers crossed that things continue to look good!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Easter 2012

Thanks for all of your lovely emails, comments, and messages relating to our news! We are super happy about it all, though of course we're still nervous. I'm due October 11th, so we're safely out of the first trimester and everything, so far, is looking great. Please keep us in your thoughts and hope that things work out.

We did start to tell people this weekend, just in time for Easter!

As some of you may know, Raf has been very poorly. Well, we all have, but poor little Poppet started vomiting on Friday night - throughout the night - and on saturday morning, just when we thought things were getting better - he projectile vomited all over my car. By Sunday morning he seemed much, much better so we ended up having a nice day.

We spent a good part of the morning making cakes and decorating them, while also making pancakes. Check out Raf's handy work.

Yummy! Testing his cakes, though the truth us Raf doesn't really eat cake.

Raf's first egg hunt begins... We laid a trail of plastic eggs around the garden, which took Rafi to his Easter basket hidden on the deck. He soon got the hang of it, and had a lovely time.

Almost there...

As soon as he saw the balloon and basket, Raf exclaimed, "cool"!

Happy boy! The first thing he grabbed was an Easter apple!

Trying to pick up his swag!

Wow, cool new toothbrush :)

Sammy helps Raf catch 'Easter Eggs' in Raf's new butterfly net.

Cool, sweeties!

Daddy reading Raf his Easter card.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Poorly boy

Raf has really been under the weather. A really terrible cold and cough, and now a tummy bug. Around 3:30am this morning morning, Raf started to vomit. We thought it was because he was coughing so much, but then, just when we had him all changed and back to bed, he vomited all over me again. Ack. We were all up then and it seemed as though Rafi was getting better. Fast forward to our car journey to the shops, and, gah, projectile vomit everywhere. We had a nice snuggle in bed this afternoon and then a sofa bed with Thomas playing on the telly. Of course, just when we thought we'd turned a corner we had another vomiting episode when he headed to bed. We've got extra sheets, towels, pajamas for Raf and for me all ready to go.

It makes me so sad to see him, but even more so because it's Easter! Since we have no family around and no doting relatives to spoil him with gifts and chocolate, we did perhaps get a little more for him than we'd originally planned. Send healthy vibes Raf's way, if you have some to spare, so he can enjoy the day as much as possible.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Papa in the Stars

Today I was changing Rafi in Babies R Us, and as he lay there he saw a picture of a star on the wall. He pointed to it and exclaimed, "Papa!"

"That's right", I responded, "Papa in the stars".

"Papa 'n stars", agreed Rafi.