Wednesday, March 30, 2011

22 weeks

 Here is what is going on with Noah this week according to;
Your baby's getting better at spotting very small objects and tracking moving things. At this point, he may be able to recognize an object after seeing only part of it — like his favorite toy peeking out from under the couch. This will be the basis of little hide-and-seek games you'll be playing in the coming months. He can also follow an object out of his view. Your baby will reach for a block (or another object) on a table if you hold him close to it, and once he's got one, he may just go after a second.
Earlier your baby learned to distinguish between similar bold colors. Now, he's beginning to sort out subtle differences in pastels. Reading books about colors or playing with colored blocks is a great way to learn about the color palette.
When your baby starts fussing at the supermarket, you may be able to distract him — not for enough time to knock everything off your shopping list, but a few minutes goes a long way these days. Try engaging him with funny faces or a round of "The Itsy-Bitsy Spider." Clapping your hands, giving him something to hold and mouth, or pointing out new objects in the aisles might work, too. But, remember: For some sensitive babies, the sights, sounds, smells, and overly friendly folks found in stores can be too much.
Your baby's ability to interact with you, others, and his surroundings is growing daily. At this stage, he may start playing little games as he begins to understand that simple actions have results. He may drop objects just to watch you pick them up or to see how and where they fall. Once he understand that letting go of something is as much fun as picking it up, your baby's world will become more interesting — and yours a good deal messier. Tiring as it sounds, you'd better get used to it. In a few weeks, this will be accompanied by your baby's fits of giggles.

Before long, you'll probably notice the noise level increasing, not only because of your baby's babble but also because he'll find out how much fun it is to bang objects together. Banging, shaking, and mouthing are all ways your baby conducts his experiments on the world.

Noah is doing great.  He is getting more and more vocal and now frequently when we are in the car he will be in the back seat talking to himself.  He's also gaining more control of his hands and arms in grabbing and holding onto objects, especially at consciously holding something in his mouth for 5-10 minutes while he sucks on it.  Noah is also getting good at entertaining himself.  Rather than crying when he wakes up we'll hear him in there talking and playing and go in his room to find him grinning up at us.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Curried Rice Salad

Curried Rice Salad

This is very similar to my Curried Couscous recipe, but I think I actually liked this dressing better and will start using it for my couscous also.  This was a great way to use up the brown rice that I had leftover from dinner Sunday night.  In fact, I liked this so much that I'm going to have to make extra brown rice every time I make some so that I can enjoy this the next day.  The best part is that this is super versatile, you could use almonds, cashews or walnuts instead of the pecans, raisins or sliced grapes instead of the dried cranberries, and mint or cilantro instead of the parsley.

-2-3 cups cooked brown rice
-3/4 cup dried cranberries
-3/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
-4 scallions, sliced
-2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
-1 Tbsp curry powder
-1 tsp salt
-2 Tbsp sugar
-zest and juice of 1 orange
-zest and juice of 1 lemon
-2 Tbsp olive oil
-2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
-1 tsp dried thyme
-1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

Whisk together curry powder- cayenne.  Toss with rice, cranberries, pecans, scallions and parsley.  Serve at room temperature.

Monday, March 28, 2011

family time

lately we have been loving that it is getting dark late and that we have some daylight time together as a family.  most nights we've been trying to enjoy this by either going for a family walk, or sitting out on the porch together.  we are right in the brief window where the weather is nice here, before it gets too hot and too humid, so we have to take advantage of it.

How do you like to spend your evenings?

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Thai Honey Peanut Chicken

I made this Thai Honey Peanut Chicken for dinner tonight.  The only things that I changed were that I doubled the sauce (to have extra to pour over rice), and I added broccoli.  In all it was a quick, good, healthful dinner, but honestly there are so many things that I make that are so delicious that I'm not sure if I'll make this again, it was just mediocre.  I do think it would be a great marinade for tofu though, maybe with some fresh ginger, or sesame oil added in.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Sweethearts Necklace

I picked up some metal stamping and jewelry making supplies with my birthday giftcards to Michael's.  Today I finally had the time to play around with them and made this necklace.  The chain, pendants, and findings are all sterling silver, the pearl is fresh water.  This was pretty good for a first attempt, but I haven't fully perfected my abilities yet.  I'm considering selling necklaces like this one (and some other random accessories) on etsy... I just haven't decided if I really have the desire to keep up with an online store.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Baby Name Blocks

I made these blocks as part of a gift for the baby of a friend.  The wood was Jeremy's Grandad's scraps that he cut up for me.  Then I modge podged on some scrapbook papers that I had laying around, stamped on the letters, distressed the edges with a brown stamp pad, and added a final layer of modge podge to seal it all.  Next time I think I'd even go a step further and sand some of the paper away to make the blocks even more distressed.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

21 weeks

 Here is what is going on with Noah this week according to;

Your baby may be able to hold her own bottle now and it's fine to let her, but never prop the bottle for her and walk away. A propped bottle could cause your baby to overeat or even choke. Also, if your baby falls asleep while sucking on the bottle, milk or formula can pool in her mouth, coating her teeth with sugar, which can lead to tooth decay. Pooled milk can also drip into the tubes that connect the back of the throat with the middle part of the ear, leading to ear infections. Your baby's probably showing more signs that she's ready for solids — from a weaker tongue-thrust reflex (when your baby pushes out her tongue when something is placed on it) to a keener interest in the foods you and others are eating. But don't be in a rush to give your baby solid food. Discuss when to introduce solid food with your baby's healthcare provider. Your baby's digestive system may not be ready for solids, and she might not be able control her chewing and swallowing muscles. (Don't worry: That will all come in a few weeks.) Giving your baby solid foods too early can raise her risk of developing food allergies, too. Common allergies include citrus, egg whites, peanut butter, wheat, shellfish, and cow's milk. Use family mealtime to socialize with your baby. She'll enjoy watching you eat, and she may even eat more herself as a result. In another month or so, she'll be better able to sit up by herself and grasp small objects, too, adding to her dinner table skills.

Your baby may now be able to get into a sitting position from lying on her stomach by pushing up on her arms. If she's sitting independently, stay nearby for support — even if you provide pillows to cushion a possible fall. Your baby may have mastered the sitting skill, but she still might lose interest in being upright and topple over.

Your baby may start showing signs of one of her first major emotional milestones — stranger anxiety. She may become clingy and anxious around new (and even familiar!) people and may cry if a stranger suddenly approaches her. Keep this in mind when you're around people she doesn't know, and try not to be embarrassed when she cries in someone else's arms — just take her back and calm her down by holding her yourself. Tell your friends and family to approach your little one with slow gentle movements. A case of stranger anxiety doesn't mean you have to avoid new faces. Your baby will benefit from getting used to being around people other than you and your partner. Just remember that she needs your patience and understanding to get through this very important stage of development.

 We still can't get Noah to take a bottle, but we are going to try a few ideas that some friends suggested and see if any of them work.  Either way it's not too big of a deal since I'm never away from him for very long.  I think he's starting to get interested in solid food because sometimes I'll catch him watching me eat, and then moving his mouth around like I do when I'm chewing.  I think we are still going to wait until he is close to 6 months before we start giving him any solids though.

Noah is more and more of a boy each week now.  Although recently he does like to snuggle, but only at certain times when he is in the right mood.  The rest of the time he wants to slap, hit, and punch everything he can.  He also loves climbing on me like I'm a jungle gym, and when Jeremy plays with him rough and swings and tosses him around.  He'll roll or dive off of anything.

He loves laying on his back and holding onto each of his feet, and starting this week he loves to stick his feet and toes in his mouth.  He's not sitting up on his own yet.  He's making steps towards crawling, now when he's on his belly he'll kick and push with his legs.

I've been thinking that his gums have been bothering him for a few weeks.  He has been drooling a lot, and gnawing his gums on my fingers or anything he can get in his mouth.  He loves it when I give him cool rings to suck and gnaw on.  He's not quite coordinated enough to hold them up himself yet, but he'll gnaw and lick them as long as someone will hold them up for him.  He'll suck on a pacifier for a few seconds, but then takes it out of his mouth, flips it around, and gnaws on the back or the side of it.  He just doesn't understand that it's supposed to stay in his mouth and be sucked on.

Noah had his 4 month doctor's appointment last week (a couple weeks late) and he is now 26 inches long, and weighs 15 lbs 2 oz.  So he's definitely on the larger side length wise and at a good, healthy weight.  He has cute chubby baby cheeks, and some fat rolls in his thighs, but other than that he's still a fairly long and lean baby.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

White Chicken Enchiladas

White Chicken Enchiladas

Jeremy said this was one of the best meals that I've ever made.  I really liked them also.  It was fairly simple to throw together as I had already boiled, shredded, and strained the broth of a chicken earlier in the week (as has seem to become my weekly tradition in preparing food for the week).  I chopped up sliced pickled jalapenos because I didn't have fresh lying around... either would be fine.  I had also intended to top the enchiladas with an extra 1/2 cup of shredded cheese, but found that the sauce provided plenty of richness, so I saved the extra calories.

-2 cups shredded chicken
-1 onion, diced
-2 jalapenos, diced (seeded if desired)
-4 cloves garlic, minced
-2 cups chicken broth
-1 can great northern beans, drained and rinsed
-2 tsp cumin
-10-12 tortillas (I use Aztec whole wheat, but corn would be good also)
-3 (4 oz) cans chiles
-1/2 cup fat-free half and half
-1 Tbsp butter
-2 Tbsp flour
-1 cup light sour cream
-1.5 cups monteray jack cheese, shredded
-salt and pepper to taste
-chopped cilantro and scallions for garnish

Saute onion and 1 jalapeno over medium high heat for 5 minutes.  Add chicken, 1 can chiles, 1.5 tsp cumin, 1/4 tsp pepper, 1/2 tsp salt, white beans, and 1/2 cup chicken broth.  Stir and heat through.  Remove from heat and stir in fat-free half and half.

In a separate pot, melt butter over medium high heat.  Add 1 chopped jalapeno and cook for 5 minutes.  Sprinkle in flour, whisk and cook for 1 minute.  Whisk in 1.5 cups chicken broth, continue to stir and cook for 2 minutes.  Add chiles, reduce heat, stir in sour cream.  Stir in the cheese.  Add 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/4 tsp pepper, and 1/2 tsp salt.  Remove from heat.

Layer 1/2 cup of sauce on the bottom of a greased 13x9 pan.  Spoon chicken into tortillas, roll up, and place seam side down in pan.  Once all enchiladas are placed in pan, pour cheese sauce over top.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.  Top with chopped scallions and cilantro.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

a few photos so Grandma knows that the bib and onesie went to good use.  both Jeremy and I thought that Noah looked a bit like a girl in this outfit though... not sure if it's this shade of green, or if the shamrocks look like flowers and just make him look less masculine. 

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

20 weeks

Your baby now realizes where sounds come from, and he'll turn quickly toward a new one. One of the easiest ways to engage him is to jingle a set of keys. Wind chimes are great attention-getters, too. Your baby may now be able to recognize his own name and understand that you're speaking to him when you say it. You may notice that your little one turns his head when you call him or talk about him with others. If you want to engage and entertain your baby, all you need to do is talk to him. At this age, babies don't learn language from the television or radio, so turn them off and use real dialogue instead.

Your baby can't express his emotions in the same complex way that you can. Although he can let you know in clear ways when he's angry, bored, or happy, his ability to show love and humor are just developing. Your baby also shows a strong attachment to you by raising his arms when he wants to be picked up and by crying when you leave the room. He may also give you hugs and kisses. And he's beginning to get the joke — he'll laugh at funny expressions and try to make you laugh, too. Keep the laughter flowing with your silly faces!

Not many new developments this week.  Although just yesterday at least two times I think that Noah understood his name and seemed to know I was talking to him.  I've been working on trying to get Noah back on a pacifier, hoping that if I can get him to suck on a pacifier then maybe I can get him to suck on a bottle.  So far he'll suck for a minute or two and then pulls it out of his mouth, or just decides to chew on it rather than suck.  His favorite baby talk sound now is a high pitch squeal, which he'll pretty much do on command if you initiate a squeal first.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Healthier Mac and Cheese

I have been wanting to try Ellie Krieger's Mac and Cheese for years.  I love how she reduces the fat of the dish by omitting the flour and butter, and ups the nutritional value by adding pureed squash.  I have been skeptical as to whether or not this would taste health foodish.  Much to my surprise it tasted amazing.  I reduced the fat even more than Ellie's version by using fat-free milk.  I also doubled the cayenne pepper, substituted more cheddar cheese for the jack, and eliminated the bread crumb and parmesan topping, opting for a sprinkling of additional cheddar instead.  I will definitely make this again!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Chicken Cacciatore

I have been wanting to make Chicken Cacciatore for years, but have never got around to it.  Now I am kicking myself for not trying it sooner, it was delicious!  I opted for Ree's version as she has never steered me wrong before.  I omitted the butter and reduced the oil to make it more healthful, and then served it over whole wheat spaghetti.  I also had to cook my chicken a lot longer then she indicated in the recipe for it to be cooked through.  I absolutely loved the dimension that the turmeric added to the tomato sauce and might try adding a pinch of it in my spaghetti sauce in the future.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011



Chopped scallions would also make a great last minute stir in with the parsley. 

-1 lb cooked chicken (I used thighs and boiled then shredded them so that I could have some homemade broth to make this with)
-1 lb smoked turkey sausage, sliced
-1 lb medium shrimp (I used thawed frozen RAW shrimp)
-2 Tbsp Tony's seasoning
-2 Tbsp olive oil
-1 onion, diced
-1 green pepper, diced
-4 stalks celery, diced
-5 cloves garlic, minced
-1 tsp salt
-1/2 tsp pepper
-1/2 tsp cayenne
-3 bay leaves
-1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
-1 tsp thyme
-1 Tbsp hot sauce
-8 cups chicken broth
-3 cups rice
-chopped parsley

Season the raw shrimp and cooked chicken with the 2 Tbsp Tony's seasoning and set aside.  Heat oil in large pot over medium heat.  Saute the onion, green pepper, and celery until soft (about 5 minutes).  Add garlic and saute 30 seconds.  Add sausage, cayenne, diced tomatoes, salt, pepper, bay leaves, thyme, hot sauce, and chicken broth.  Bring to a boil.  Add rice, reduce heat and simmer, stirring often.  Cook until liquid is absorbed (15-30 minutes) and rice begins to get tender (add more broth or water 1 cup at a time if needed until rice is properly cooked).  Add shrimp and chicken, cover and cook until shrimp is done (10-15 minutes), stirring often.  Stir in fresh chopped parsley and serve.

19 weeks

Here is what is going on with Noah this week according to;

By now, your baby's physical developments are coming fast and furious. When lying on her back, she'll lift her head and shoulders as you reach to pull her up. If you place her on her stomach, she'll extend her arms and legs and arch her back. This is good exercise for strengthening her neck muscles, and it will help her develop the head control necessary for sitting up. When you pulled your baby into a sitting position a few weeks back, her head lagged behind her arms and shoulders. Now, she can anticipate the direction you're pulling her, and her head will follow right along with the rest of her body. What's more, her spine is straightening, allowing her to sit unsupported, which frees her hands for exploring, and she can pivot to reach a desired object. Once her back and neck muscles are strong enough to hold her upright and she's figured out where to put her legs so she won't topple over, it's just a matter of time until she moves on to proper crawling, standing, and walking. Until she can get into a sitting position without your help, you can prop her in the corner of your sofa or on your legs to steady her.

Your baby is adding new sounds to her language repertoire, and she may sound like a broken record. Babies this age often become so enthralled by a newfound ability that they get stuck on it for a while. This is normal — babies tend to master one skill before moving to the next. Hearing the same sound over and over can get annoying, but practicing patience now will prepare you for the endless string of "nos" and "whys" you'll be hearing from your child soon enough. Your baby may also watch your mouth intently when you speak and try to imitate inflections and utter consonant sounds such as "m" and "b."
Following a well-established nighttime routine, which might include a bath or a bedtime story, for example, may help settle your baby to sleep. It's a good idea to consistently "sequence" your baby toward slumber: Feed her, give her a bath, put her in her pajamas, play a game, read her a book, sing songs or play some music, then put her down. A beloved routine gives you and your baby plenty of time to connect and wind down. You may decide to alternate going-to-bed activities with your partner (you do the bath, he reads the story, and so on). Or, to give both of you a regular break, try taking turns, with one person responsible for putting your baby to bed each night.

Noah is doing great.  Now he loves to flap both arms up and down to the side at the same time... as if he is making an imaginery snow angel, or is about to take off and fly away.  About two weeks ago we quit swaddling him at night (because he's getting too big for his swaddling sacks) and he was able to quit cold turkey without a problem.  So now he's able to roll over and move around at night, and by morning (or the end of any nap) we usually find him crammed up in the upper left corner of his crib because he ran out of room to crawl and roll around. Initially, I was pumping and we were giving him a bottle a week so that we knew that he would take them (just in case I ever had to leave him for more than 3 hours at a time).  Twice within the past month we have tried to give him a bottle and he has refused both times now.  Within the last couple of days he has started grabbing his feet a lot and touching his toes.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Chicken Bog

Chicken Bog

This is sort of South Carolina's version of jambalaya.  Chopped scallions would also be great stirred in at the last moment, and they would add an extra bit of freshness.  Let's be honest, this dish doesn't look very pretty, but it sure is some soothing comfort food that warms you from the inside out.  To make this much easier, you could use store bought chicken broth and a shredded rotisserie chicken.  You could use white rice instead of brown, just measure the broth first and add the appropriate amount of rice for a 2 part water to 1 part rice ratio.

-3 lb chicken, rinsed
-2 Tbsp butter
-1 onion
-4 cloves garlic
-2 stalks celery
-4 carrots
-4 tsp seasoned salt
-1 tsp cayenne
-2 tsp thyme
-parsley stems
-1 tsp black pepper
-3 bay leaves
-8 cups water
-1 lb smoked turkey sausage, sliced
-3 cups brown rice
-chopped parsley

Day 1
Place chicken, parsley stems, bay leaves, seasoned salt, pepper, cayenne, thyme, and water in a large pot.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 hour.  Let chicken cool in the broth for at least 30 minutes to absorb some of the juices.  Take chicken out of pot, shred meat and refrigerate for day 2.  Return the bones to the pot, return liquid to a boil, simmer for 1 hour.  Strain broth and refrigerate for day 2.

Day 2
Skim fat off of the broth.  Melt butter in large pot over medium high heat.  Saute onion, celery and carrots until beginning to soften (5-10 minutes).  Add garlic and saute for 30 seconds.  Add sausage, chicken and broth to the pot and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, add rice, and simmer (uncovered) until liquid is absorbed (about 1 hour).  If rice is still tough once liquid is absorbed add an extra cup or two of water and simmer until rice is done.  Taste and adjust seasonings (adding garlic powder, salt, pepper, thyme, or cayenne).  Stir in parsley and sprinkle with hot sauce.

yarn wreath

I have been wanting to make a yarn wreath for a very long time.  When I got two gift cards to Michael's for my birthday I knew that I'd be spending a few bucks to get a wreath form so that I could finally put this together.  The yarn I've had lying around for years, and the rosettes were made from scraps of old tshirts.  This was a fun, quick, and easy project.  The boys loved it also... Noah enjoyed watching me wrap the yarn and Luke loved it when I pulled out my yarn stash to pick a color.  He had a blast throwing skeins of yarn around the living room while I worked on this project, and I loved that we finally found something that he could throw around without damaging anything.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Stuffed Shells

Stuffed Shells

I haven't made these since we lived in Myrtle Beach (2 years ago).  I have no idea why, we both love them, and they happen to be one of our favorite vegetarian meals to eat.  You could easily use a jar of store bought pasta sauce to eliminate several steps.

-1 box jumbo shells, cooked to al dente
-16 oz part-skim ricotta cheese
-16 oz part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded
-1 1/2 cups parmesan cheese, shredded
-1 (32 oz) bag frozen spinach, defrosted and squeezed of excess moisture
-2 eggs, beaten
-1/2 tsp salt
-1/2 tsp pepper
-6 cloves garlic, minced
-1 onion, diced
-2 (28 oz) cans crushed tomatoes (or tomato sauce would be fine also)
-1 tsp salt
-1 Tbsp sugar
-1/2 tsp pepper
-pinch red pepper flakes
-2 tsp Italian seasoning

Combine ricotta, mozzarella, parmesan, spinach, eggs, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper in bowl.  Stir to combine, breaking up clumps of spinach.  In a medium pan saute the onion and garlic for 5 minutes.  Add tomatoes, salt, sugar, pepper, red pepper flakes, and Italian seasoning.  Simmer at least 30 minutes, then cool.  Pour a little sauce on the bottom of a greased 13x9 pan.  Using a spoon, fill the shells with the spinach- cheese mixture and place them seam side up in the pan.  Top with remaining sauce (and extra shredded cheese if desired).  Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Corn Chowder

I've been wanting to try this Corn Chowder recipe for months.  I've been on a soup kick this week, because my mother-in-law gave us a loaf of homemade bread and I don't think there's any better way to enjoy it than dipped into a hearty soup.  This chowder served as the perfect condiment/ side dish for the homemade bread.  I made a few changes to the recipe as listed below;

-added 4 cloves of minced garlic when sauteing the corn
-used frozen corn instead of fresh
-doubled the amount of cornmeal/ water mixture because I like my soups on the thicker side
-doubled the green chiles and omitted the chipotle because I didn't have any on hand
-added 1/4 tsp cayenne
-added a can of diced tomatoes
-omitted the bacon
-stirred in 1/2 cup cheddar cheese at the end
-used fat-free half and half instead of the heavy cream
-stirred in the half and half at the end and heated through, rather than boiling it

Potato Soup

Potato Soup

I posted a different recipe for potato soup a month or two ago, however I like this version much more than the one I posted then.

-4 carrots, peeled and diced
-2 stalks celery, diced
-1 onion, diced
-2 Tbsp butter
-2 cups chicken broth
-4 potatoes, peeled and diced
-1.5 tsp sugar
-1/2 tsp salt
-1/2 tsp dried rosemary
-1/2 tsp dried thyme
-1/8 tsp pepper
-1/3 cup flour
-2.5 cups milk
-1 cup cheddar cheese, grated

Melt butter in large pot over medium heat.  Saute carrot, celery and onion until soft (about 5 minutes).  Add broth, potatoes, and sugar- pepper.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer 20 minutes.  Using a hand masher or immersion blender puree potatoes.  Combine flour with 1/2 cup of milk.  Stir into soup.  Stir in remaining milk and simmer 5 minutes for soup to thicken.  Remove from heat and stir in cheese.  Top with grated cheese, crumbled bacon, scallions or chives.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

18 weeks

Here is what is going on with Noah this week according to;

Even though crying is still your baby's strongest form of communication, he's also developing his sense of humor during his fifth month. He may start to laugh at pleasant surprises such as your face appearing from underneath a blanket or a toy popping out of a box, provided it isn't too loud or startling. Encourage your baby's laughs, giggles, and smiles with funny faces and lots of general silliness. Babies enjoy hearing a variety of sounds and you don't need special toys or instruments to provide them. Simply click your tongue, whistle, or make animal noises — your baby will love it! Encourage your baby to experiment and play with a variety of objects. Something as simple as a clean cloth diaper might occupy him for several minutes. Watch him suck on it, hold it, and discover what happens when he scrunches it up. Give him a light rattle and see him delight in the sound it makes when he shakes it. An activity center or crib gym is a good choice for this stage, as your baby begins to explore the cause and effect of moving a lever and hearing a bell ring, for instance.

Babies see color from birth, but they have difficulty distinguishing similar tones, such as red and orange. (Babies can tell the difference between very different colors such as red, green, and yellow.) As a result, younger babies often prefer black and white or high-contrast patterns. At your baby's age, color differences become clearer, and your baby has started to distinguish between similar shades. Present him with a variety of colors in books, toys, and clothing.

Not a ton new with Noah this week.  He has been under the weather and had a stuffy nose and been sneezing a whole lot.  A few times a day every day we have been sitting in a hot steamy bathroom to try to clear him out.  He hates me suctioning the snot out of his nose, but he is super stuffy (especially in the morning) so I make him endure it anyway.  No fever or cough as of now, just praying this doesn't get worse as we had a friend whose baby ended up in the ER last week with RSV.

Noah went to his first Mardis Gras parade this weekend and HATED it.  Every time loud bands, floats blasting music, or police sirens went by he would scream and cry.  It was just a lot of noise, people and stimulation for a little baby.  We have another parade in our future with our community group this evening, plus one with our church this weekend, and then probably some family parading on actual Mardis Gras day, so hopefully Noah warms up to the idea a bit... he is a New Orleans baby after all.

Noah is becoming increasingly more aware of everyone and everything around him.  Now more often than not he will not nurse if there is another person in the room while I try to feed him, especially if it is someone that he isn't used to.  He's start eating, and then every time he hears a voice he will let go and turn his head around to see who it is and what is going on.