Jamie, 8-1/2 months

In early August, we drove to Wichita, Kansas, to visit Doc’s mom, great-aunt, and sisters and their families. Great-Aunt Patty is in poor health and so it was especially nice to get to see her.

The long car ride (7+ hours each way) taught Jamie an important lesson: the car seat is not so bad. The first half of the trip up was pretty bad; he screamed and cried for about two hours straight, until he fell asleep out of exhaustion. And then when he woke up an hour later, he was STILL in the car seat. You could almost see the wheels turning in his head: Hmmm. I’m still here. Crying did not get me what I wanted.

And on the way home, although he didn’t scream the whole way, we got tired of acting like clowns on crack and so we eventually just let him cry for a while. I think that those are important lessons for him: he doesn’t always get what he wants, and we can’t entertain him 24/7.

He still isn’t a huge fan of riding in the car, but since that trip, he seems to be a little more content with it.

On this trip, I learned that it is very difficult for me to share a room with Jamie at night now. I hear every little noise he makes and I wake up. I guess that’s my “mom ears.” Also, I have a hard time getting to sleep in the first place for fear that my snoring will wake him up.

On our last day, we took Jamie to the Sedgwick County Zoo. Normally I don’t like zoos, what with all the animals in little cages and all, but the Sedgwick Zoo is a very nice place, built from the ground up as a natural habitat zoo. Very few parts of it made me feel squicky and sad. A rainstorm blew through just before we got there, so the temperature dropped about 20 degrees into the mid 70s. Jamie seemed to enjoy being out in nature and he liked riding in the zoo stroller.

Next time, Jamie will be older and have a better attention span; hopefully we’ll get to stay longer and see more exhibits.

We picked up this recipe from Doc’s mom and Aunt Patty while in Wichita. I think it will become one of our weekly staple vegetarian meals.

PASTA SOFIA
Serves 4

8 ounces angel hair pasta
2 large ripe heirloom tomatoes
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 tablespoons capers
1 small can sliced black olives (or use Kalamatas)
1/2 cup sliced red onion
Olive oil
Salt
Pepper
Parmesan cheese (optional)

Cook pasta to al dente. Drain, place in serving bowl, and drizzle with a little olive oil.

Meanwhile, dice the tomatoes and place into another serving bowl along with any juices that the tomatoes release. Add the garlic, capers, black olives, onion, and olive oil (about 3-4 tablespoons, or to taste). Toss to combine, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve tomato mixture over warm pasta. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, if desired.

We’re taking it slow with the progression of Jamie’s diet. After running through a bunch of different fruits and veggies to make sure he didn’t have bad reactions to them, we have sort of “started over” again. Currently he is eating only brown rice cereal, oatmeal, yellow squash, avocado, and applesauce. All of those seem to work just fine with his system. We learned a couple of weeks ago that yams do not agree with him, and an encounter with some pieces of banana in early August left him with a bad rash on his face and arm that is still visible, even now. (But then, we rubbed some banana on his neck about a week later and he had no reaction at all.)

He’s eating really decent quantities now, too. He has three meals a day, consisting of at least one veggie or fruit and a grain. He typically eats about 1/4 cup each of grains and veggies/fruits at each meal. He has watered-down apple juice every morning, and water from his sippy cup as well as formula throughout the day.

I’m hoping that we’ll soon be able to stop feeding him Nutramigen AA. It’s insanely expensive. Even regular Nutramigen is expensive, but at least it’s available in stores and about 1/2 to 1/3 the cost of AA. I also think that he’s ready to start eating finger foods. Since the banana incident, though, we’re just not sure what to give him. We tried peaches but they’re a bit slippery and he wasn’t fond of the texture. Maybe super-ripe pear? Grape halves? Pasta spirals? And I know he ought to have some protein soon; I just don’t know where to start with that. I probably need to call his doctor to get some advice.

Here are some photos of me and Jamie, goofing off, from a few days ago:

Yesterday, we took advantage of the less-boiling-than-normal weather and went to the Arboretum in the afternoon. We have a membership (thanks, mom and dad!) and so can go whenever we like and stay as long (or as short) as we want to. We planted ourselves and Jamie on the grass under a big shady tree and hung out for a while. There’s a fountain plaza with four giant frog sculptures that spit water into the middle of the plaza. Next time we’ll be sure to bring along Jamie’s swimsuit!

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