Sunday, April 20, 2014

Have We Found The Culprit

Starting around 3 months old, we noticed Brynn's skin becoming red, flakey, & she would itch like mad.  It started with her cheeks, then spread to her wrists, behind her knees, her belly, her scalp, then it seemed to be everywhere.  She was constantly scratching & making herself bleed.  
So we put her in mittens, lathered her in lotions, and took her to the doctor.  Her pedi said not to worry about it.  Yeah, right, ok.  Thanks for the help, but that isn't going to work for me. 

So we took her to the dermatologist.  He gave us a cream that worked like magic but it had steroids in it so I wasn't comfortable using it as often as she needed.  

I asked EVERYONE for tips-facebook, her teachers at SNS, family, WebMD-and we tried what seemed like everything. 

We switched formula 7 times (Similac, WalMart brand, Target Brand of Enfamil, Target Brand of Enfamil Gentle, Target Brand of Soy, Target Brand of Gentle, Target Brand of Soy) and none made a bit of difference.  

Then I found out from my sister-in-law that you aren't supposed to use fabric softener on babies clothes.  DUH! Thanks Tia Angela! How did I not know this!?  So I rewashed EVERYTHING in organic baby detergent WITHOUT fabric softener.  I rewashed ALL our clothes and stopped using fabric softener with them as well.  This seemed to work...a little bit.  

I had pretty much given up on finding a solution and just tried to keep the itchiness away.  Then a friend from college started a blog about her son and their struggle with his eczema.  The Ericksons were dealing with some serious serious eczema & it really scared me that Brynn's could get that bad.  (Follow the link to her blog-I'm so thankful they are finding some answers!) I am so glad she decided to share their story because it really got me moving to find an answer to B's skin.  After talking to Staci, she explained that eczema is usually the outward sign of something going on in the gut.  That got me thinking...

...I love Target.  Who doesn't? We have a Target card, use the Cartwheel app and I scan the Target app & ad every week for discounts (formula & diapers aren't cheap people!) We have tried to use UP&UP diapers but they irritate B's skin.  I've tried UP&UP moisturizer, lotion & contact solution and used it for about a day before it went in the trash...just not the same. So, last Sunday in class it dawns on me...Why do I think UP&UP formula would be any different? It's "comparable to Enfamil" so it should be just fine? Right?

That afternoon I bought just plain-name brand-Enfamil Gentlease. After about 48 hours I started to notice a difference in her skin. Her little hands and wrists had been flakey & rough for such a long time that I just about cried when I went to put lotion on her...and her skin was smooth! By Friday (5 full days of the Enfamil) her arms and legs looked SO much better. I think we might have found the culprit!!  Now, her skin isn't 100% clear, her face still seems to break out when she rubs against someone. And when she is tired or upset she still claws at her scalp (I'm afraid this is the way she deals with stress.) But, I think I have found the main trigger. 

So, does Target formula make every kid break out? Obviously, no. But it did my kid. And it will be so worth the extra dollars to buy name brand if it keeps her skin clear! (We will accept any enfamil coupons you might send our way! 😊) 

I know a skin problem doesn't seem terrible--but when your baby girl will scratch her face, scalp, and body until it bleeds--that's not ok. And this Momma shed many, many tears over the pain it caused her baby girl. 
We are praying that this is our answer
& we can keep her skin from causing her anymore pain. 

Thanks Staci for sharing your story and giving me motivation to not listen to my doctor & to be proactive for my child! 

Brynn's First Easter

I love a Sunday, especially an Easter Sunday. I love seeing everyone dressed in bright springy colors, stuffing an Easter basket for B, spending time with family & friends, and lots of candy! But most important, I love seeing my FaceBook & Instagram feed flooded with scripture & the words "He Is Risen!" 

Now--brace yourself for a lot of pictures--seriously.

We started the day taking pictures at our house before church.  

After church we took pictures of the girls.  As per usual, it was incredibly tricky to get both looking at the camera & smiling at the same time! 

I'm almost positive they are complimenting each other on their beautiful, pink Easter dresses. 

Then it was Easter basket time at Pops & Grams!  

She was excited to watch Frozen! Can't say that Daddy feels the same way. :)

Then she opened her Easter gift from her Nana & Papa G.  She got the cutest stuff lamb & some Easter cookies cutters that will be so fun to use next year! Thanks Nana & Papa G!

And then her Easter gift from Grams & Pops.  This girl loves to open a present! She got some cute outfits and a Glow Worm!

I panicked (ok-not so much panicked-just remembered & felt ridiculous) last night when I remembered I DIDN'T EVEN BUY EASTER EGGS! Seriously, how did I forget that? Jonathan went to the store and they were out.  But my best friend came through and let me borrow some of her daughters eggs.  Whew! Brynn loved to chew on them.  One came apart and she filled with with drool. Don't worry Ellen, I'll wash them real good before they are returned! ;)

We had a quick wardrobe change & got ready to hunt eggs.

Cousin Mackenzie helped her hunt confetti eggs!

So much goodness in this picture! 

We had such a great day with my grandparents, parents, sister, Brynn's college friend Jordan (Happy Birthday!) the Gwinns and our friends at church.  It makes me so happy that we have our family here to be a part of Brynn's "growing-up." And we missed our family that lives tooooo far away!

Here's hoping Brynn sleeps in late tomorrow (because she sure isn't nappin today!) 

Happy Easter! 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Weekends Are My Favorite

Our weekend started off great because Jonathan finally came home from his business trip! He was in Michigan for 4 days and we missed him for sure! We are lucky enough to have my parents live close so B and I can pack up and stay with them when Jonathan travels.  

On Saturday, I decided it was time to work in the yard.  Great theory.  I went to clean out the flower beds and of course we have no gloves.  How's a girl supposed to pull weeds without gloves?! I waited until J & B woke up and we went to WalMart to get some "supplies." And since it was 10am on a Saturday, Brynn went in her jammies and I didn't even put a bow on her.  I mean, it is WalMart. After we grabbed some gloves and a few plants J & B decided to check out the fish. 

We worked outside all of 45 minutes before it was too hot & the wind became outrageous. Yes, it was only 80 degrees.  I'm sorry I hate the heat.  I hate the wind.  I especially hate them together.  Give me cold and cloudy--all day everyday.  

I'll eventually do a "before & after" post of our yard.  When we moved in, our yard had this terrible desert, rock, wimpy tree situation.  I shudder thinking about it (and how easy we thought it would be to remove the gravel...nope-not easy.)

We spent the rest of the day resting, 

playing with Brynn, 


working on school yearbooks, and watching movies.  I'm typically not one to watch a bunch of movies.  I prefer to put in seasons of my favorite shows (Friends, Boy Meets World, Psych, The Office.) But for some reason, ever since Brynn was sick last week, all I have wanted to do is watch (and by watch I mean have playing in the background while I do other things...I don't have that much down time!) old chick flicks.  And for those wondering, at least 1 person might be...right?? Here is what I have watched...

-The Proposal
- Fools Gold
- Sahara
- My Best Friends Wedding
- The Wedding Planner
- Runaway Bride

And I'm finishing the weekend with my ALL time favorite movie...You've Got Mail.  Thank your ladies and gentlemen...thank your. 
I found Father of the Bride and Fever Pitch for super cheap on Amazon.  Those are up next on the list! 

Today I woke up to a text from my Mom and Dad letting me know that my beautiful cousin, Lindsey, would be delivering her baby boy by C-Section at 34 weeks.  We immediately went into prayer mode, texting friends for prayers and soon saw a perfect picture of little Lucas Foy!
4lbs 5oz & 17 inches long.  I'm sure Tim & Linds would love any prayers you would like to say in honor of them and little Luke.  We are praising God that they are both doing well!

Then we were off to church.  We love our church so much.  We have really found a home there.  J & I are so thankful for our best friends who invited us to South Plains several years ago.  If you're looking for somewhere to go, I can guarantee you will be welcomed and encouraged here!  And there is also a good chance you will catch a glimpse of this one either jumping uncontrollably or napping. :)

After church, we were standing in the parking lot talking to our friends Ellen & Landon.  They are the parents of Brynn's best buddy, Elizabeth.  Well the dad's disappeared and apparently Landon wanted to send E home with us!

Today Brynn is 8 months old! 

I spent the afternoon grocery shopping (tomorrow will be freezer meal making day) and then we went over to my parents house for OneGroup.  We have sure missed going! Now it's time to rest and be so thankful I get to spend my Monday at home being Brynn's Momma! 

Weekends are my favorite.  

Monday, April 7, 2014

Have I Mentioned Brynn's Sick

I'm sure you all know by now...Brynn is sick.  Last Wednesday night she didn't sleep well and I could feel something coming on. I thought she might be getting another tooth.  When I picked her up from school on Thursday she was as happy as could be and I was relieved (seeing as I made her cry when I checked on her at lunch.) We got home, feed her some food, gave her a bottle...and she spit some up.  No big deal.  She does that often.  Then Friday happened...

I've thought she's thrown up before. Nope. I was wrong.  

She threw up ALL & EVERY bottle and bit of food she ate (and there is also some diaper stuff going on--I will spare you the details-you're welcome.)  She took 3 looooong naps while I dusted, vacuumed, swept, & mopped for the first time in at least 2 months (please tell me I'm not the only one??)  I spent Friday texting my best friend, Ellen, since her little one had the stomach bug a few weeks back to get some pointers.  Brynn had 3 baths that day.  More than she normally gets in 2 weeks (Hey! She's a baby!)  We ended up giving her lots of water and a little bit of banana and to bed she went.  

Saturday we were doing ok.  She wasn't eating be expected.  I had this genius idea that she was due for some tummy time.  Cue more throw up.  So back to water, oatmeal, and banana.  We also called the UMC nurse hotline. They were SO helpful.  I would recommend it if it's a weekend and you need some guidance.  

Sunday we were going to play it by ear to see if we would go to class or church.  Brynn just started going to Bible Class and I hated her to miss it. Jonathan fed her a bottle while I slept in a little.  And I could hear it from the my room...nope...not going to church.  We eat lunch every Sunday with my parents, sister, and her fiance.  J & I both agreed that we needed to get out of the house so we packed the diaper bag with lots of extra clothes and took off.  We had a great lunch.  

Brynn got to play and be silly with Aunt Reagan.

Pops walked her outside until his arms almost fell off.  Then we came home for naps.  For the 1st time since she was maybe 2 months old, she would only sleep if I held her.  So we snuggled on the couch and she took a long nap.  She woke up, took a small bottle and went back to sleep in Daddy's arms.  Sleepy girl! 

Today has been about the same as yesterday.  I called her pediatrician and they said it was probably a virus and just to watch for dehydration.  Today she drank about 7oz total and normally has 28oz in a day.  I did manage to get a few smiles out of her which brought me pure joy! 

I never understood why parents would post to Facebook to pray for their kids who were sick with just a cold or something "trivial." Now I COMPLETELY understand! It doesn't matter what it is, if your baby is sick it's a big deal.  I have a new appreciation and respect for parents who deal with illness on a daily & consistent basis.  So if you are one of those parents, you have my prayers tonight. 

Tomorrow I will get to stay home, snuggle my baby, and hopefully stuff her face with food that will stay in her tummy! Obvious statement alert: Being a mom is hard.  So worth it.  But so hard in ways I never understood. 


Friday, April 4, 2014

What's In A Name

Brynn's Name:

If you've known me for any amount of time you know how much I treasure my maiden name.  I have always been so proud to wear the name.  I was always taught to honor my name and the legacy that came with it.  A legacy of faith, hard work, & love. A legacy of farmers, great cooks, & family dinners.  
My dad, DadDad, Mema, and 3 week old Brynn. 

When we found out we were pregnant I wanted to use Mills in some way.  I suggested it to Jonathan as a middle name and he was on board (I didn't even have to twist his arm!)  I also wanted the 1st name to be a family name.  We threw around lots of ideas and kept coming back to Brynn.  Brynn being a combination of my dad's 1st name and my mom's middle name. It was the only name we actually agreed on!  

We also had a boy name set (and yes, to be fair it was a family name on Jonathan's side.) The day before we went in for the gender sonogram we both suddenly changed our minds and didn't like the boy name we had picked.  We scratched it and couldn't fully decide what it would be. When we found out it was a girl I was so relieved that I didn't have to pick a boy name!

Blog Name:
When we were struggling to get pregnant (more on that in a future post) God put Ephesians 3:20-21 on my heart. 

I knew He was telling me that no matter what happened, He was at work WITHIN me.  When we became pregnant I was reading Ephesians 3 and I felt that 14-21 was a perfect prayer for our baby.  I want Brynn to KNOW God's love that surpasses all knowledge and to have Christ dwell in her heart. Oh, please Jesus let her search for you! 

Out of this comes my blog title.  This scripture has become a family verse.  God has placed a supportive family, an incredible set of friends, & a great cloud of witnesses to help us "Root & Establish" Brynn in Him. Because I know I cannot be what she needs on my own.  It takes a village! To everyone who is a part of her life--we thank you and appreciate what you bring to our home. 

Little one is sick.  Lots of laundry, lots of snuggles, lots of Daniel Tiger.  Thank goodness she is sleeping/napping so well (here's hoping I didn't jink it.) We were hoping to take her to see the Easter Bunny tomorrow, but I'm thinking that's not going to happen! Looks like we will be working in the yard during nap times instead--Yay! 

Here's hoping everyone gets some rest this weekend! 
Thanks for reading, 
...I spoke too soon...I think she is awake!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The 1st One

More Brynn.  Yep, that's right everyone cheer! Our life with little Miss Brynn is more exciting & tiring than we ever thought it would be and I want her to be able to look back on all that fun! So, this blog is mostly for Brynn and will be mostly about Brynn.  I don't care about perfect grammar or sentence structure (sorry for the million run-on sentences that will inevitably happen), I won't post every day (or week for that matter), but would love for our family and friends to follow along and see all the shenanigans that this life with Brynn will bring.
 --I told you about those run-on sentences!--

To my sweetest Brynn girl-
You are currently coughing your cutie little face off while taking a quick nap before Daddy gets home.  We both love you so dearly and pray that this blog will give you a glimpse of all that love! What a joy you are to us.  We are humbled every day that God chose us to be your parents. 
I love you for always!

And we all KNOW that I HAVE to post a picture.  Today we went shopping and she had so much fun looking at everything and waving to people with her Sophie. Also, it seems that her stroller is quite yummy! 

Thanks for reading!