Will 0.10, Allergies and Mobility

Will turned 0.10 yesterday – that’s 0 years and 10 months, expressed as it would be for a software version, so 0.10 comes after 0.9 which comes after 0.8, etc.  And Will 0.10 is different (by nine months) than Will 0.1.  This isn’t math, so it doesn’t have to make sense.  :-)

Will 0.10 is fighting a mild sinus bug, which means he’s very snotty and congested and sometimes even cranky.  He’s got five teeth now, to one degree or another – two on top, barely peeking through, and three crooked little things on the bottom.  He loves eating, but doesn’t care for baby food any more.  He just wants to sit with us at the table and eat whatever we’re eating.  I’m OK with that, but I think we need to start him on vitamins now that he’s winding down his formula consumption.

His facial rash comes and goes – we’ve identified that he’s allergic to eggs and the cats, but don’t know if the allergy causes the eczema outbreaks.  We’re doing an OK job keeping him away from eggs – he’s on an egg-free diet at school, for example – but we’ve not yet taken action on the cats.  We are trying to find a good home for them – preferably outdoors – rather than taking them to the humane society.  We’re trying to balance our responsibility to the cats with our responsibility to Willpower, and really, there is no balancing to be done – Will is allergic and the cats need to live elsewhere and that settles that.  I just wish it were that painless to actually implement.

Willpower is also increasingly mobile, as you can see here:

He’s crawling very well, even up the stairs (but not down yet!) and pulling himself up easily, but hasn’t yet taken his first steps.  We expect that he will soon, but it’s probably a few weeks away.

Sprinklers and Teeth

First, we don’t have any pictures of Will 0.9 showing his new teeth.  He really won’t let us take any pictures of them, and they’re so sore that we won’t even really let us open his mouth to look at them.  The only reason we even know they have come in is because I was holding him upside down and tickling him and noticed his two front top teeth have broken through.  We do have some other good pictures from this week.  :-)

Second, the sprinkler /irrigation system installation is going well.  Jeremy, Kevin and Andy have been crucial to making the progress we did.  Saturday, we rented a Dingo with a bucket loader and trencher attachments, and finished most of the trenching.  Today, we cleaned up some of the trenches, finished burrowing under the sidewalk (playing in the mud!) in three places, and laid most of the 1″ PVC piping in the backyard and the west half of the front yard.  I’ve adjusted the design in several places as we’ve worked through it, mostly adding more sprinkler heads to the point of overkill.  This week, we’ll finish laying the rest of the piping and backfill the trenches, with half-inch or three-quarter inch pipes stubbed up through the surface for the installation of the actual sprinkler heads after the sod has been laid.  Hopefully, we’ll be able to lay sod next weekend, and install the sprinkler heads, and the project will be complete.

My two front teeth…

Yep, Willpower’s two front teeth are finally poked through the gums.  There is no possible way to get a photo of this milestone unless we strapped him down to the floor and used a crowbar to pry his mouth open, but they are in!  He really doesn’t like showing his teeth yet.

Allergy update:  I spoke with the Allergy nurse yesterday at Cardinal Glennon as we received our packet in the mail with Will’s lab results and some brochures on Egg-Free Diet.  The levels in his blood are enough that we must avoid egg and egg ingredients.  So my freak-out email previously about no macaroni is really true.  And we must do a better job of reading food labels to look for egg ingredients in things we ordinarily wouldn’t associate eggs with.  If he does eat eggs or foods that contain egg, his levels will continue to rise and we would have to look additional medicine treatment options so the best thing for us to do right now is strict avoidance to keep his levels down.  And a new challenge begins…

House update:  We had a huge load of dirt delivered in the backyard this morning!  We have a full weekend of project fun ahead of us.  We plan on filling in all of the unlevel holes in the backyard with the load of dirt.  After that is finished (hopefully by tomorrow morning), we are going to rent a trencher and start burying the pvc pipe for our very own sprinkler system tomorrow.  I think there is going to be a lot of sweating going on this weekend.

Home Improvement Update

We’ve been so busy with home improvement projects at the new house that I haven’t posted any pictures or updates of what we’ve been doing.

When we moved in a month ago, one of my first priorities was to get the garage organized so that working on other projects wouldn’t be so stressful.  With Andy staying with us for the summer, we worked together on the garage projects.   We repaired/”improved” the workbench Grandpa had made for us five years ago, by sawing off the legs and adding six castors to it so that we can wheel it around when necessary.

Next we worked on shelving for the garage, modeled on the shelves which Grandpa had helped me build in our first house.  We modified them a bit by making them wider and higher rearranging the shelving configuration, but otherwise we built them exactly has Grandpa had designed and constructed our original set.  We even used 2x4s ripped in half (to make 2x2s) for the “legs” just as Grandpa had taught, so that we could save a nickel per board.  Andy painted them white, just like we had done before, and we assembled and anchored them to the walls, just as we had done before.

And, just as we had before, they gave us a ton of storage, with one shelf capable of holding four fully loaded milk crates.

After that, Andy and I hung pegboard over the now-mobile workbench for even more storage:

With the garage (and house!) a little more organized, we’ve been able to get started on the yard.  We have mostly dead sod in the front yard, with very bumpy weed clumps in the back, so getting a nice lawn and some flower beds is going to be a long process.  But the decrepit state of the yard does allow for some projects we’d normally not consider due to the excavation required.

Among them is our first yard project – burying our gutter downspouts, both for aesthetic reasons and as a preventive measure to keep water and moisture away from the house foundation and basement.  When we started, our gutters just poured huge quantities of water into our yard, just feet from our foundation.

Our plan was to use four-inch PVC to route the downspouts underground to the edge of our property, where the water can escape using “pop-ups.”

For the front yard, we merged two gutters into one underground flow, and ran them down one edge of our property to a pop-up next to the sidewalk.

As we were finishing the downspouts, it started to rain, giving us the chance to watch them working (or not working), and they passed the test with flying colors.

With that done, the next yard project is a “do it yourself” automatic sprinker/irrigation system.  With Grandpa Bill in town for a long July 4th weekend, we threw ourselves into the project.  At this point, we’ve completed the indoor plumbing, but there’s lots more to do – enough to comprise a blog post of its own, certainly.

Great July 4th Weekend!

We had such a wonderful weekend of fun with friends and family.  Thursday evening, my parents and my Grandma finally decided to make the trek to Champaign.  We were so thrilled they could all come so that Gordy & Dad could work on some new projects (attempting our own sprinkler system!), Grandma Lois & Great-Grandma Jean has some wonderful quality time with Will (new pictures soon; okay Grandma Lois, send them our way), and Will watched his first fireworks show and loved it!  We had a great time at Rod & Chrissy’s backyard pool party chillin with the Cirks and the Smiths.  Saturday evening, we had the Bridgemans over to our house for a cook-out and then spent a few hours doing our own fireworks (Thanks Grandpa Bill).  And Sunday, the ladies shopped, while the guys worked furiously on the plumbing and electricity for the sprinkler system – I call that a pretty good end to a weekend!

Are you kidding me – foods to avoid due to eggs.

pancakes, waffles, donuts, pastas, commercial breads, anything coated with batter, pudding, ice cream, soups, broth/stock, cake, cookies, pie, cool whips, fudge, frostings, salad dressings, mayonnaise, tarter sauce, root beer, cream sauces, baking powders, MACARONI…my son can’t have macaroni – WHAT?

Okay – now I am freaking out!

Did you know that egg allergies are the most common trigger for Eczema?  There is a very easy to read article of how a body reacts to eggs if you have an allergy to them.  Now I am just wondering what all Will has eaten already and how many of those foods contain egg.  Also interesting that this article sites how antibodies are created to fight off the invader (egg proteins).  The antibodies (IGE) are exactly what our Immunologist has been studying already since Will had his hip infection and they have already been monitoring his IGE levels.

Is any of this related to the new allergy – is this what we have been looking at all along?  I am so confused as a mom and have so many questions!

So do we really have to start closely monitoring food labels?

How to read a label for an egg-free diet:

Be sure to avoid foods that contain any of the following ingredients:

  • albumin
  • albuminate
  • egg white
  • egg yolk
  • dried egg
  • egg powder
  • egg solids
  • egg substitutes
  • eggnog
  • globulin
  • lecithin
  • livetin
  • lysozyme (used in Europe)
  • mayonnaise
  • meringue
  • ovalbumin
  • ovomucin
  • ovomucoid
  • ovovitellin
  • Simplesse™
  • vitellin

Sleep and Eggs

Will had another good night of sleep last night, going uninterrupted from about 9 PM to 5 AM this morning, before demanding a bottle and sleeping until 7.

Preliminary indications from the allergy testing at Cardinal Glennon are that he’s allergic to eggs, and some lower-level allergies to some other stuff.  We’re getting more details soon, so we’ll fill you in.

But allergic to eggs?  What in the heck are we supposed to do about that?  Time to do some research…

Sleep Update

After a rough but encouraging Monday night, last night was awesome.  Will went to sleep at about 8:15, after a bath and some cereal/yogurt and lots of play time.  He slept straight through until 6 this morning, and didn’t wake up even once in between – not for a pacifier, and not for food.

I’m not foolish enough to think that one night of success means we’ve conquered all the sleeping problems, but at least now we realize that sleeping through the night really is possible.