Archive: Mar 2013

1yo goes a-hunting

The faculty and staff Easter Egg Hunt was held last Tuesday at 5:30. Unfortunately 5:30 is also my 1yo’s nap time, hence the grumpy face. I was mean mommy and woke him up in time to capture a few eggs. Though he started out slow and grumpy, it didn’t take too long for him to take off running, not to pick up eggs, but to run around with one egg as he tried to escape. Yep, I have a toddler.

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homemade valentine’s day card 2013

While not pie on this pi day, I hope you enjoy this sweet Valentine’s Day card I made and sent out this year. I couldn’t share the e-version until after Joy received hers in Zambia which took a month!

I loved making this card using the good ole Adobe Creative Suite, my camera, and my color laser printer that once again justified its purchase. I borrowed the mustache pun from over here after I finally stop giggling.

my lifesaving superpower

This photo may look fairly unremarkable, but it showcases something vital for some very ill babies.

Seemingly simple processes such as digestion can be fatal to premature babies and their underdeveloped systems. For them, the gentlest food, provided by either their mothers or donors, is the best option.

Many infants weighing 3lbs or less cannot yet tolerate the proteins and other components found cow and soy products, which may further damage their delicate systems and contribute to necrotizing enterocolitis or NEC. In the article “Formula-Fed Preemies at Higher Risk for Dangerous GI Condition, Surgery than Babies Who Get Donor Milk,” researchers at John Hopkins explain NEC:

Necrotizing enterocolitis is marked by tissue damage to the baby’s bowel. Because up to 40 percent of babies who develop NEC die, the condition is considered an emergency. Some cases of NEC can be treated with antibiotics and by temporarily withholding of food, but some babies require surgery to remove the dead portions of the intestines. The remaining intestine, however, can develop scarring that leads to poor absorption of nutrients, growth problems and the need for more surgery down the road.

With such a high mortality rate and with lasting consequences for survivors, the causes of NEC are being thoroughly investigated. After noticing lower rates of NEC in babies who receive breastmilk, researchers confirmed it can reduce NEC rates by 77 percent. Hospitals that have adopted the breastmilk only standard for premature babies have seen their NEC rates drop to 1 percent.

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Missisippi snow day 2013

It snowed in January and somehow work wasn’t cancelled, so we went in thinking if the university is open then the roads must be clear. They weren’t. We slid twice. It was scary especially with Ennis in the car. Unlike some people, we didn’t end up in a ditch, but we won’t make that mistake again. If it snows, we’ll take the vacation day.

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Joy

In January, we flew up to hug Joy before she departed for a 27 months to Africa.

This amazing lady is my dear friend Joy.

Since meeting in high school in 1997, we’ve been pushing each other to live lives worth writing about. Though we went to rival colleges, we both studied English and journalism.Over the years and many visits such as my recent week in D.C., she has become one of the most important people in my life.

Now she’s in Zambia in training to become a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Linking Income, Food, and the Environment Project. She’s learning to speak Nyanja and living with a host family for her three-months before getting her 2 year assignment in a rural area. When she gets a chance, she updates her blog though photos are pretty impossible to share at the moment.

I miss her, but I’m so proud to know someone who wanted to change her life and instead of just complaining, got up and did something.

DC Vacation: umbrella vs jogging stroller

I went back and forth on whether I should bring an umbrella stroller or a jogging stroller to D.C. I am glad I went with latter. Minus the White House tour where strollers are banned, we brought the stroller everywhere. Every museum, every monument, even shopping and the NBA game where they had a stroller check. The truly only downside of the stroller was learning which elevators in the metro system are used as public restrooms.

At one station the elevators weren’t at the entrance we were at and an employee, seeing sweet sleeping Ennis, told us how to take the stroller down the escalator without having to wake Ennis up. At another like the above photo, the elevators were out for maintenance so Ennis got to ride in the arms of his auntie Joy while I brought it folded down the escalator.

For the long naps and for the comfort of pushing, I’m so glad I brought the big stroller that reclined and rolled on all surfaces and could jump curbs. It was nice to have somewhere to bundle him up from the cold and drape with a weather protector sheet under in the rain. It kept him warm, dry, and rested. It was gate checked for free on our flights.

Yes,yes, bring the big stroller every time.

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