Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Potty Training Part 2

I guess there's really not that much to tell . . . I've had zero success. I've gotten him to sit on his little potty chair without a diaper on a few times, but no action. He does not like being on the potty, though - he's such a routine boy that anything different is not welcomed. He was whining/crying the first time so I started making up stories as he sat there, and he seemed to enjoy that; but, after that he only wanted to sit on the potty to hear stories. (I guess I'm just that good of a storyteller . . . HA - yeah, right.)

It's been really frustrating because every time we've sat in there for close to 20 minutes with no results, so I put his diaper back on and not even 5 minutes later he's pooped. I cannot figure out how to get him to do that on the potty! It's not as if he doesn't have to go because he clearly does. So, like I said, there's not a whole lot to report, but I do take it as a somewhat promising sign that he'll at least sit on the potty without his diaper (although, now that it's getting colder outside he really hates it because the seat is so cold).

On a Side Note: We had a wonderful Thanksgiving with our families, but being home is already taking a toll on me . . . The boys must be bored with only me around because they are both being little stinkers. Asher is constantly picking on Aiden, and Aiden is whiny any time I'm not interacting with him. Good thing Christmas is coming soon! Also, I have a new cookie recipe I'm hoping to post within a few days - chocolate, peanut butter, and pretzels . . . stay tuned. Also, the leaves were dropping like crazy a couple weeks ago, and the boys both thought it was a blast playing in the leaves!

Throwing leaves at each other
That's a pretty sweet face :)
Aiden was up to his face in leaves and was loving it!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Mini Snickers Cheesecakes . . . Birthday Traditions Die Hard

Growing up, I always asked for a cheesecake for my birthday, and my mom always complied. Usually it was a New York cheesecake (which is basically just plain) with some type of fruit topping. This tradition continued through college, and I can tell you it made me pretty popular with my roomies. BUT, now that I'm all growed up, my mom's not usually here on my birthday, so I must make my own. (Although, my parents and brother came on Friday, and brought a delicious Cheesecake Factory Reese's cheesecake . . . yum.) Instead of making an entire cheesecake which would basically be eaten only by Dusty and me, right before the holiday pounds start packing on, I decided to make some mini cheesecakes. They turned out really well, and were so fun to make and decorate, and I used leftover Halloween Snickers instead of chocolate chips. The original recipe can be found here.

Mini Cheesecakes
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
2 tbsp brown sugar
small pinch salt
2 1/2 tbsp butter, melted

8-oz cream cheese, softened
2 tbsp sour cream
1/3 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips, or chopped up candy of your choice

1) Preheat oven to 350F. Line 12 cups of a muffin pan with paper liners.
2) Mix together graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and salt and stir to combine. Pour over melted butter and stir with a fork to moisten the crumbs. Place about a tablespoon of crumb mixture in each of the prepared muffin cups and pack down into an even layer.*
3) Cream together cream cheese, sour cream and sugar until smooth. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract.
4) Place 1 tbsp chocolate chips or 1/2 of a Fun Size candy bar (chopped) into each of the muffin cups. Evenly divide cheesecake batter between the muffin cups, covering chocolate.**
5) Bake for 20-25 minutes, until cheesecakes are set. Allow to cool for 10 minutes in the muffin pan, then carefully transfer cheesecakes to a cooling rack to cool completely before refrigerating. Check them after 20 minutes - the centers should still be a little jiggly, but they'll firm up and set as they cool. You don't want to overbake them.

Check out my new bday apron! 
*I used 1 1/2 Tbls. and still had a little leftover. I used a juice glass to press the crumbs down and it fit perfectly.
**I used a small cookie scoop and two scoops per cup worked well. Approximately 2 Tbls. per cup. Although, if I were to make these again, I might make 1 1/2 times the filling and fill the cups a little more. Also, if using a candy bar with caramel, try to keep it in the center of the muffin cup - when I unwrapped mine, the pieces of Snickers touching the sides pulled off on the paper. Definitely not disastrous, but the presentation isn't as nice . . . but I did get to eat those Snickers pieces, which was a plus ;) I drizzled caramel and melted chocolate chips over the top of mine, but you could use whatever you'd like - leftover crust crumbs, chopped nuts or chocolate, or a little piece of whatever candy you're using. Hope you enjoy these babies!

On a Side Note: Aiden goes back in this week to have his eyes checked again - I'm hoping he won't even need the patches anymore, but I'm praying he still won't need surgery . . . fingers crossed! Also, Asher and Aiden have started playing together more and it is my new favorite thing. I love, love, love hearing them laughing together - it is the best sound I've heard.
"Playing" usually involves making a mess of all the toys and books :)
Aiden's pretty adept at crawling now, but as you can see from this picture,
he followed a toy under this chair . . . and then got stuck! I had to get a
picture because it was just too funny, and he was so mad. What a goof.

Monday, November 07, 2011

My Most Terrifying Parenting Experience . . .

Last Tuesday Aiden (almost 10 months) started running a fever during the day. I wasn't concerned because the highest I saw it get was right around 102. He was mostly himself all day, but a little crankier than usual, which I don't blame him for - who's in a good mood when they feel crappy? We gave him Tylenol before bed and he went down just fine.

He was really restless during the night, but not really crying. Finally, we got up at about 2:30 a.m., gave him some more Tylenol, and laid him back in his crib. (His crib is still in our bedroom.) As we laid there waiting for him to go back to sleep, he started making funny noises, which at first sounded like he was chomping on his pacifier. Nothing unusual there - he's getting his top teeth, so he pretty much chomps on everything. But, the more we listened, the less it sounded like that. I went over to check on him, and his eyes were open, but his arms were jerking toward the center of his body and it sounded almost like he was hiccuping. I held his arms down on his tummy to stop the jerking, and called to Dusty that something was going on and I didn't know what to do. The jerking stopped after about 30 seconds, and I picked him up. His eyes were still open, but his body was completely limp. We couldn't get him to look at us no matter what we did, he wouldn't lift his head up off my shoulder, and when I lifted his arm up it just dropped down to his side. I thought he was paralyzed. It was the most scared I have ever been in my life. Ever.

We hurried downstairs, bundled him into his carseat, and Dusty took him to the ER. Aiden slowly came out of his daze and was moving around normally. The ER doctor did blood work, and checked his vitals and the normal ears, throat, temp, etc. Everything checked out okay, except he still had a fever. Apparently he had a febrile seizure, which is a seizure brought on by a fever. It doesn't necessarily have to be a very high fever, but just one that rose rapidly. It's not uncommon in children 6 months to 5 years, but usually there's a family history of it . . . which there isn't in our case. The seizures don't cause any harm (unless they fit certain criteria, which Aiden's didn't), you just have to wait them out. Since he's had one, there's a 25% chance that he'll have another, but he'll outgrow them by the time he's 5 yrs old. They're also not an indicator of anything more serious, such as epilepsy or other seizure illnesses. Thank the Lord. Now, since we have a family history, there's also a 15% chance that Asher will have one, but our pediatrician said she rarely sees it in more than one child in a family.

We feel very blessed that it wasn't anything more serious, and he's doing just fine - no repercussions from the seizure, and his fever's gone, too. In talking to his pediatrician, it was almost funny how nonchalant she was about it, and that if it happens again we don't even need to bring him in, just let her know about it. IT WAS TERRIFYING! I actually thought he would never be able to move again, or worse, that there was a chance he might die. In retrospect, I suppose it seems obvious that he was having a seizure, and apparently you're not supposed to hold their arms or pick them up . . . woops. If it happens again (praying hard, hard, hard, that it won't) I guess we'll be more prepared, but I think I'll be just as terrified while it's happening. I guess I take for granted that our kids are generally healthy, but this definitely served as a bit of a wake-up call.

On a lighter note, we took the boys out for Halloween, and they looked so cute in their costumes! Asher went as a cowboy (his vest was made by his Great-Grandma Reese for his Uncle Jacey when he was a little tyke) and Aiden went as a horse. It really was a lot of fun and both boys seemed to enjoy it!

"This is the life - some guy just gave me a
whole handful of candy!!"