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Nearly half a million babies (1 in 10) are born premature in the US each year which is higher than that of most other developed nations. This is the journeys of our first born son, Finnegan, who was born 14 weeks early and weighed only 1 pound 15 ounces at birth. Of our daugher, Korrigan, who was born a healthy 7 pounds, 7 ounces at 37 weeks. And of our second son, MacKeegan, who was also born at 37 weeks at a whopping 8 pounds, 13 ounces. Our continued adventures reminds us daily how good God is.

Saturday, April 30

Look who's three!

Three months, that is! Korri "turns" three months old today. I know it gets old hearing it, but so crazy that she is that old already. Here are some development things for a three month old.

Your baby has been able to recognize you since she was just a few days old, but now she may actually be able to show it. About half of babies this age begin to exhibit an obvious recognition of their parents. [I think she recognizes me, but hard to tell at this age.]

Here are some other milestones to look for.

Movement Milestones
Raises head and chest when lying on stomach [for sure!]
Supports upper body with arms when lying on stomach [yes, when arms are propped under her for her]
Stretches legs out and kicks when lying on stomach or back [I think so]
Opens and shuts hands [yes]
Pushes down on legs when feet are placed on a firm surface [yes, this is new for us because Finn didn't so this until, well, forever]
Brings hand to mouth [thankfully, yes!]
Takes swipes at dangling objects with hands [haven't noticed this yet]
Grasps and shakes hand toys [haven't given her toys, but grabs at others' fingers]

Visual and Hearing Milestones
Watches faces intently [yes]
Follows moving objects [yes]
Recognizes familiar objects and people at a distance [not sure, but I think so]
Starts using hands and eyes in coordination [I don't think so]
Smiles at the sound of your voice [yes, my voice anyway]
Begins to babble [yes, she tries so hard and only a little comes out!]
Begins to imitate some sounds [she LOVES this game]
Turns head toward direction of sound [yes]

Social and Emotional Milestones
Begins to develop a social smile [yes]
Enjoys playing with other people and may cry when playing stops [haven't noticed this yet]
Becomes more communicative and expressive with face and body [yes]
Imitates some movements and facial expressions [yes, a little bit]

Wednesday, April 27

Daddy day

Jim took Monday off, so we got to have another family day, which is always great. Because he had the day off, daddy got to go with us to Preemie class. When Finn started going to Preemie class, they were in the evenings, so Jim got to go along. Now they are during the day and it had been a long time since he could attend. We were getting ready to go and Finn kept telling daddy good bye! He didn't understand that daddy was coming with to class. Once there, Finn had to show off for daddy and show him all the toys and balls. It was great.

After class, we had Korri's 3 month photo shoot! Crazy that she is almost 3 months old already. Daddy and Finn dropped Korri and me off at Jess's house and they ran an errand while we were there...so Finn wouldn't get bored. Korri is such a serious baby that I wasn't sure if we'd get many different and usable shots. But, of course, I shouldn't have worried as Jess worked her usual magic and even got Miss K to smile a few times. Here is a sneak peek from Facebook (for those of you who aren't on FB!):
Look at that head control...and she did this for most of the shoot! I have to say, this may be my favorite all-time picture that Jess has taken (I almost cried when I saw it for the first time)...and considering how many pictures she has taken of my family, that is really saying something. I feel redundant with always praising Jess and her ability, but it is always well deserved. She is amazing each and every time. Can't wait to see the rest, Jess!!!

In the afternoon, NeNe came over for a visit. As always, Finn was thrilled to see her.

Monday, April 25

Alleluia! Alleluia!

What a wonderfully low key Easter! We went to church as a family and Finn was a super duper good boy! Daddy didn't even get mad once, which is saying something. I wish Finn would behave that well every time he went to church and he could go with  me every week. Korri slept through mass and didn't even get out of her car seat...so much for her cute Easter outfit!
And to make mass even more perfect, the recessional song was one of my favorites: Alleluia! Alleluia! Let the Holy Anthem Rise. You gotta love Easter church songs...so uplifting and positive.

While Finn was napping, the Easter Bunny came! He set up an Easter egg hunt, which Finn totally loved. I just love making new memories with your kids and seeing the magic of the holidays through their eyes.
He even found one egg that we missed while hunting. What a good eye! The Easter Bunny gave Finn a soccer ball, which Finn loved. He'd been asking for one for weeks, so it was a good "reason" for him to get one. We hope everybody had a wonderful Easter filled with child-like wonder and joy!

Sunday, April 24

Healthy dose of Erica

We were spoiled this weekend. Erica, my "almost a teenager" cousin, came over Thursday night and stayed until last night! Man, I LOVE having her here. She is so easy to be around and is a major help with the kids. Hope we get to have her over a lot this summer! It helps that after he warms up, Finn absolutely LOVES her and wants her to follow him around like a puppy all day long!

Jim took Friday and Monday off, which is a nice surprise. Which means, on Friday, I got to go over to Laura and Matt's all by myself and meet Daphne, who wasn't even a week old yet! I know Korri was a newborn only two months ago, but it is amazing how quickly you forget how little they are! And it made me see how much Korri has progressed from a newborn and is interacting with her environment. Daphne is so cute and already holding her head up and sucking on her fingers! Protegy baby...which wouldn't surprise you if you know her parents!

On Saturday, the five of us went to the Gopher football spring game. It was a fun family outing, but it was too cold for my taste (as far as I could feel, it never got above 50 degrees like they promised). We found Finn's old sweater that Nana made him and it fit Korri perfectly. As you can see, we are definitely a "Gopher family" through and through (Erica even wore one of my Gopher sweatshirts!).
Korri slept the entire time. I think she likes being in the carrier. Jim and Finn walked around for a bit and Finn got to meet the Easter Bunny.
I guess everybody loved Finn's Goldy hat (it is Jim's from when he was little...that's what I call vintage!). It was Erica's first football game ever, even though it was really a scrimmage and not a real game. I don't think I converted her over to being a football lover, but that doesn't mean I'm going to stop trying!

Thursday, April 21

Cuddle bug

There are many things I love about our life now that Korri is here. She has changed our lives in so many wonderful and unexpected ways. One of the unexpected ways is...Finn will now cuddle with me! Finn has NEVER been a cuddler, much to my sadness. But now it seems that because my lap is full most of the time, he often asks to sit on my lap or wants up when I'm walking around. Well, today, we were getting him ready for nap and he asked to rock in his chair! Um, yes please! I sang Jesus Loves Me and when I was done, without lifting his head, he says, "Minnesota, please?" So, I sang the Rouser! I loved every second of it, even if Korri was screaming downstairs.

We got to go to ECFE this morning! I was so happy for both Finn and my sakes. At class, they always have a craft or coloring project to do, but Finn always wants to play with the trucks and kitchen, so he almost never participates. Well, today they were making bunny ears and he actually wanted to do it. Here is his final product:
The cutest Easter Bunny I have ever seen, if I do say so myself! I got a better pic with my camera, but haven't uploaded it yet.

We are now a two car household again! Couldn't be happier.

A belated congratulations to our friends, Laura and Matt, on the birth of their daughter, Daphne, who was born on Sunday. We were going to stop by today after class, but had to reschedule to tomorrow. Can't wait to meet her!

Tuesday, April 19

Parlor tricks

Do I dare mention Korri's sleep schedule? Sure, I'll risk it. It seems that baby girl's body has figured out the difference between night and day. She still sleeps a ton, but now when she falls asleep after 8pm-ish, it is a much deeper sleep than she does during the day. And she usually sleeps straight without waking up for 4 to 5 hours! Yay. Then the rest of the night, she usually goes 3 to 4 hours, but that means I usually only have to get up twice, if I time things right. Hopefully this continues and only improves as she gets bigger.

Her rash seemed to have disappeared. She seems much more comfortable, too, so hopefully that was the problem and it is gone for good.

Korri and I went to auntie Becca's bridal shower in Murdock on Saturday. Auntie Kristine drove, which was much appreciated (especially since I'd gotten 4 hours of sleep the night before thanks to Korri and Jim!). The shower was nice and Becky got lots of great stuff. Korri got passed around the whole time, which was a nice break for me...then she screamed the entire way from Murdock to St. Cloud. Poor Grace (who was in the back seat with her). Jim and Finn hung out at home all day since they were still car-less (Jim said his car SHOULD be fixed by the end of this week...).

Sunday, we went over to Born's for an over due visit and color Easter eggs! Finn is still a little young to "get" coloring eggs, but he did three or four before he was done. I thought that was good. It was hard for him to wait and at one point, he just took the egg out and put it in other colors! Quinn LOVED coloring eggs and by the end, had all the colors mixed into one container, much to her mother's chagrin. We had a great meal and then headed home later than we'd planned. Luckily, both of our kids are pretty flexible when it comes to things like that.

Yesterday, the three of us dropped daddy off at work (it was really hard for Finn not to go in with him!) and went to Preemie class. Finn can draw  horizontal and vertical lines! They had a paint station set up and he figured it out. So I'm not a terrible mother after all ;) He also amazed me with his ability to climb on, through and around their obstacle course/jungle gym. I guess his gross motor skills are improving!! Yay.

After class, lunch and nap, we picked daddy up at work and went to a financial planning meeting (yes, with both kids!). I was pleasantly surprised at how well behaved Finn was considering the meeting lasted over 45 minutes. He got squirrelly at one point and I gave him paper and pen and he drew for a long time. Then he showed off his Minnesota Gopher knowledge to the financial planner. Gotta love parlor tricks :) Once she fell asleep, Korri was fine, too! Ha, ha.

Last night, Ryan and Leah dropped off a rocking chair! Yay...now we have one in each of the kids' rooms. We didn't think we needed one in Finn's room until we didn't have one any more. Ryan's mom was getting rid of one of hers, which happened to be pink-ish color, so it works perfectly in Korri's room. Thanks, guys, for delivering it!

Friday, April 15

All is not lost

I forgot to mention that Korri actually lost an ounce since her appointment last week (9 days ago). I was thinking she should be about 12 pounds and she was 11 pounds 7 ounces. As I'm sure you can remember with Finn, losing weight is such a sensitive subject with me, but I think I handled it well. I asked the doctor if she was concerned and she said that it was most likely due to her cold and that once she is feeling better, she'll eat better. If I'm still concerned in a week or so, she said to bring her in for a weight check, but hopefully that won't be necessary. Darn plugged nose! Hard to eat when you can't breathe through your nose. AND she has been sleeping through a couple daytime feedings the last few days, which probably isn't helping her weight, but hopefully helping to kick this cold to the curb.

Also, if you noticed, our March of Dimes ticker changed amounts and goal. If you made a donation, it was not lost! I just created personal pages for each of our family members because then we all get t-shirts to wear on the walk. Each personal walker needs to have raised $200, so I had them move the money around a little bit. It doesn't mean we appreciate your donation any less! Quite the opposite...we are grateful that we had enough donations to be able to do this. You can see our "team" total by clicking the link on the right and clicking on "Member of team name: Finn's team." If you haven't donated, you still have time!! Any donations of any size are greatly appreciated.

Happy adjusted!

Both kids are a little under the weather with a spring cold. It continues to amaze me how much snot one nose can produce! However, I had to take Korri to the doctor today. She has had a rash for over a week and it has spread, she had a low grade fever and was having problems sleeping (one night, I was up at least twice very hour!). The doctor said that she is definitely reacting to something, but thinks it is environmental, which is good, I think. Her cold is probably making it worse, which is why we noticed it and it seems to be bothering her. They gave us a steroid cream to put on and also suggested a thick cream all over her body twice a day. Hopefully baby girl feels better soon! It looks so painful.

Today is Finn's adjusted second birthday! I know it doesn't have any real significance, but it is a date that I will forever remember...a goal we didn't reach. But that being said, he is such a miracle. His gross motor skills seem to be improving by the day. His EI PT said to slow him down until they make his plan for next year or she won't have a need to come! Ha, ha.

Wednesday, April 13

Go Twins!

First, I forgot to mention that our amazing, wonderful nephew, Austin turned FIVE on Saturday! How is that possible?!?! He was with his dad on Saturday, so we didn't get to wish him a happy birthday in person, but Finn kept telling him "happy birthday, Austin" all day long.

Sunday, we had a great family day. It was uncle John's 30th birthday and Kelsie planned a surprise party in a suite at Target Field for a Twins game! All four of us went and had a great time.
I think Finn was ready to move in...he LOVED it. Korri slept most of the time, which was kind of nice. John was 100% shocked, which if you know John, is amazing he didn't make Kelsie give away the secret (it's happened in the past!). I made a cake for John, but found out Saturday when I was 95% done that you can't bring a cake into the stadium. Boo!
It turned out okay, but not exactly to the standard I was hoping. Lessons learned for next time. Of course, John loved the baseball theme, so that's all that mattered! The family came back to our house afterward for cake (Gram's Boston Cream Pie!) and ice cream. Other than the Twin's losing, it was a super wonderful day!

Jim blew a tire Saturday driving over a pothole, so the kids and I have been home bound and immobile all week. Boo! Hopefully his car is fixed soon! I'm so not used to being a one car family.

Monday, April 11

Reenactment

This is a reenactment of Korri Saturday night after I put her to bed:
No big deal; just like any other night (except it was dark and she had jammies on!). Yes, she sleeps on her tummy...get over it ;)

Jim's cousins, Dave and Matt, were here and Dave was obsessed with our video monitor. He kept looking at Korri and saying, "She keeps moving her arms around." Still, no big deal. Then he says, "She just rolled over." Now, if you know Dave, he can be somewhat of a joker, so Jim and I both were like, "yeah, whatever." Then Dave turned the monitor so we could see it and this is what we saw:
Sure enough...she was on her back!!! I pretty much freaked out. Once she was on her back, she was either scared or ticked off, so she was screaming and I promptly went to get her. I still can't believe it. Our big girl, rolling over completely unassisted! This is what PT said we should teach her to do since she does sleep on her tummy. I guess she is a quick learner!

Friday, April 8

Big brother duties

Apparently when you are a big brother, there are two things you must do.
1. Help feed your sister by giving her medicine:
And doritos (can you see the residue around her mouth?):
Jim obviously didn't let Korri eat one, but it was pretty funny.

2. Teaching your baby sister, who can't even coo much yet, to be polite. Finn got upset after giving Korri her soothie and he said to her, "Thank you, baby Korri." Like, "You should really say thank you, Korri!" I guess we are doing something right if our goal is to have a polite child(ren)!

We had a minor scare last evening with Korri. She got what looked like hives all over her back, neck and some on her face. Jim talked to the nurse line and after eliminating a lot of symptoms, they said to keep a watch on her over night and told us certain things to look for. We were concerned mainly because she'd just had her vaccines and didn't know if she was reacting badly to one of them. Well, in hind site, I think it was heat rash. I'd put her in a fleece sleeper when we went outside to play and didn't take it off when we came in. Those things are super warm. When you combined the redness from being too hot with her patches from dry skin, it looked pretty bad. After a very fussy night, she was much better today!

Anybody watching American Idol? I can't believe Pia got voted off. I didn't think she would have won it all, but I thought top three or four for sure. Thanks aunt Kelsie for the coming over and holding Korri all night ;)

Thursday, April 7

First this, then that

We've been having some struggles with Finn and consequences. When we need him to do something like put his shoes on or eat his food at dinner, he dilly dallies and "drags" his feet for what seems like forever until one of us gets angry and it becomes a huge power struggle. Finn's EI teacher, Deb, said this week that it is absolutely normal for this age to do this, which kind of made me feel a little better. She made a GREAT suggestion on how to fix it: word your requests as "First you need to put your shoes on, then we can go to the park." We started trying to say it this week...and it works! Not all the time, but at least we know he understands because the command is so simple and straightforward. And even if he doesn't comply, he seems to understand and move on to something else (like when we say "veggies first, then more pizza" or something like that). Hey, my fingers are crossed and double crossed that this works!

I think I forgot to mention yesterday that Korri's doctor is putting her on Prevacid, a stronger antiacid than Zantac. She said it is basically all we can do to try to make colicky babies more comfortable. Now, of course, it isn't covered by our insurance, so they have to get a preauth, which can take days. Hope it all works out!

And dare I say, that I finally caught Korri smiling on camera?
A little smile anyway. Of course, as soon as I shut the camera off, she had a full blown, full face smile and coo. Oh, she has started cooing a lot more in the last day or so. Before that, she would "coo" but really she was just gearing up to cry! I love this stage :)

Wednesday, April 6

2 month well-child

The four of us went to Korri's 2 month well-child appointment this morning. She is a healthy, growing little baby. They measured her height to be 21 3/4" (but the first time they measured her longer, but couldn't remember the exact measurement...I don't like how they measure height for babies because it isn't very accurate). Anyway, that is the 10th percentile (it is SO nice not to have to include her adjusted age!). She weighed 11 lbs 8 oz, which is just under the 50th percentile (I've NEVER had a baby in the 50th anything...well except head, I think!!). Glad to hear about her weight, just because when you breastfeed, you never know how much they are getting. The doctor said she looks amazing.

Warning: This may paragraph be TMI, so skip if you don't want to hear about baby body functions! We brought up a few things that concerned us, like her incessant crying because we were afraid she might be in pain. And the dr confirmed that based on the symptoms we told her, Korri has colic. Boo! I was hoping it was something else so we could fix it. "Luckily" colic usually subsides by 4 months, so "only" two more months of this. Yay?!?! We also mentioned that Korri only has a bowel movement every 2 or 3 days and when she does, it is completely watery. She said breastfed babies can have watery stools and it isn't a concern and also that it is fine for breastfed babies to go a week without having a bm. However she seems to be extra uncomfortable when it goes more than two days, so, the dr suggested giving her a suppository as needed. I don't want to use them regularly, but it is good to know if it has been a few days. Korri has very dry skin, just like Finn did at this age, so I need to be better about putting on a thicker, more effective lotion on her. And she is developing cradle cap, so I need to work on keeping that at bay by rubbing oil on her head and them carefully scraping the flakes/scabs off. Finn only had it for a couple days, maybe, so I didn't have to really treat it with him.

After one oral and three shot vaccines, we got to go home. Korri was a trooper for the shots...she cried while they were giving them, but once they were done and she got her soothie and could cuddle with momma (melt a mommy's heart!), she was all better. What a big girl. Overall, a very good appointment, even if they always seem to be running late (argh!). If we didn't love our ped so much, we'd think about changing just for a more convenient location and scheduling. Next visit: her 4 month well-child, which will be here before I know it, I'm sure!

Since Finn's adjusted second birthday is next week, I asked if they would measure him, too, which they kindly did. He is 32" tall (again, they didn't measure him standing up which they usually do at this age) and weighed 28 3/4 lbs! Well, at least his height is growing a little...he definitely doesn't have problems putting on the weight! Sheesh! He needs to be seen around 30 months just for a quick check, so hopefully I can schedule him and Korri for the same day/time.

Finn see, Finn do

Finn is very perceptive and pays attention to things that we don't even know he is aware of (hence his well developed understanding and use of the phrase "holy crap"). A perfect example last night would revolve around potty time. We have Finn's potty chair in our main floor bathroom and any time one of us goes "potty" he comes in with us and sits on his potty (fully clothed, mind you). I figure it just gets him used to the idea and we always talk about potty when he does it. Well, yesterday afternoon, the two of us were having our potty time and he stands up and faces his potty chair and arches his back...like he is peeing STANDING UP!!! OMG, I would have given my right arm to have a video camera rolling. I asked him if he was going potty like daddy does and he just looked at me and got a little embarrassed. It was WAY too funny and cute! The funnier thing was that I was just wondering how you eventually teach a boy to pee standing up, since you teach them to sit when they are little. Guess I don't have to worry about that one any more :)

Tuesday, April 5

Birth announcement

I have to apologize that my memory stinks. A couple people asked for a printed birth announcement and I forgot who they were. SO...if any of you would like a printed birth announcement, please comment here or send me an email and we would be happy to get one to you. I hope to get them ordered by the weekend so speak now, or forever hold you peace ;) (although, I'm sure I'll order a couple extra in case you don't see this until later!)

Mr. Yuck

Remember Mr. Yuck? Well, apparently we need to get a few of those stickers! For the first time ever, Finn got into the cupboard under the sink last night! To be perfectly honest, we don't have locks on any of our cupboards so it is our own fault, but he has NEVER even tried before (he seemed interested once and we just told him no). When I turned the corner and saw him, I was scared to death. However, fortunately, we keep the cleaning/hazardous materials in the back of the cupboard and the worse thing he'd found was the Pledge (which he hadn't sprayed yet). Hmmm, now I wonder if I scared him enough not to go back in there or if we should get locks. Locks, I know, but they are intimidating.

Just before bed last night, Finn got "stuck" in his Bumbo chair! He kept saying, "I stuck. Help please." Guess it's time to pass that onto Korri. Hope she likes blue!!

Monday, April 4

Double trouble

Now that our family has expanded by one and the weather is starting to show that spring will eventually arrive, we've come to terms with the fact that we need a double stroller. For now when we go on walks, I just put Korri in the Baby K'tan sling and Finn walks, which works well for now. However, I just can't imagine how we will be able to function on a regular basis without one, especially considering Finn can barely walk around the block (not to mention it takes him FOREVER when he is walking!). Thank you for the recommendations I've already received on what double stroller to get, but unfortunately (as with all things), the good ones are too expensive, even if we buy used. So, any suggestions out there? Do you have a double and do you like it? Any feedback or suggestions are appreciated.

We had Austin's birthday party on Sunday. How is it possible that he is/will be FIVE?!?! Has it really been five years since Kristine, Renae and I drove to St. Cloud to pick up Becky, who was in labor, and drive her back to the cities?!?! He changed all of our lives for the better and I think back to how boring life was before he was born. Thank God for the children in my life :)

The kids and I went to the first Preemie class of the spring this morning. We ended up being the only family there, but it was nice because I could talk with the teacher, Karen, one on one and Finn got to play to his heart's content. Karen hadn't seen Finn full on walking (our last class was in December) and she kept saying how tall he was and how smart he was!

Is it sad that the highlight to my day (maybe week?) was running to Costco and Cub WITHOUT THE KIDS? Man, it is so much easier and faster when you are by yourself. Jim took a sick day but was well enough to stay home with the kids (Finn was sleeping and I fed Korri right before I left).

Korri is pretty much smiling on demand now. It is so cute. This morning I was feeding her and she was looking straight into my eyes. So, naturally, I started talking to her and smiling and she stopped eating to smile back! Oops...better keep on task, but it melted my heart. Finn continues to be Finn. I am so thankful that not only do I love him, but I honestly like him and think he is such a good boy. Not all kids are, so I'm thankful for that (and that other people love him so much, too!). I hope he nevers loses his sweet soul or his sense of curiousity and wonder.

Saturday, April 2

Fun, fun, fun

Last night we went to Auntie Kristine's to celebrate Jordan's 16 birthday. Finn didn't nap well because his baby sister woke him up early with her crying, so he was a little crabby. Finn kept telling Jordan, "Happy, Jordan!" for Happy Birthday, Jordan. So cute. Auntie Becca, uncle Pete and Austin invited Finn to go to the circus with them this morning, so Finn got to go home with them after the party, too! Wow, a sleepover and the circus all in one day!

Finn had a BLAST! He keeps commenting on the elephants and motorcycles. He told me the motorcycles were in a balloon (the metal cage). I'm so glad that Finn is an easy enough boy that people don't mind taking him along. Between the zoo on Wednesday and the circus today, he is going to think he can go to fun and exciting places all the time...or that mom is boring because I didn't go to either place! Ha.

Well, we are pretty sure that Korri has developed full blown colic. She either has to be held or screams until she is hoarse, which is just heart breaking. She finally pooped today (going on her third day without) so I think she feels a little better. Poor NeNe was the one holding Korri when she let loose, so they both needed to be cleaned up! Luckily, we have Korri's 2 month well child this week, so hopefully we can talk to her doctor about it. Maybe it is something else and we can do something about it.

Today was a super duper good day for Finn. In addition to going to the circus with auntie Becca, uncle Pete and Austin, NeNe came over to visit and Grandma is staying over night! Sheesh. And Austin's birthday party tomorrow. I will seem boring after all these fun activities!