Wednesday, November 18, 2009

She's mobile!

Cecilia's been able to get around by "worming" across the floor, though she's managed to fully master the technique recently and has quite some speed when she is determined. Now, she basically does a full crawl around the floor and has started pulling herself up onto things.

More hidden soy

The book I was reading is "Imaginative realism" by James Gurney and he did a painting of all the things "wonderful" soybeans are used for - and low and behold there was a box of Gerber Baby Rice in the picture. Sure enough, a quick check to the ingredients list confirmed the presence of soy. I had been so focused on my diet I didn't think about what I was putting into her - though you would think the box would clearly list soy as a potential allergen. So now I've eliminated probiotics from our diet (they have milk protein), DHA supplements (they have soy), and her baby rice cereal. Things haven't been getting much better despite our completely dairy and soy free diet. Her 6 month check up is coming soon, so maybe the doctor will have some new insight (though I doubt it).

Happy Halloween

She didn't get to show off her costume much since she went to sleep right when all the trick or treaters came around. We got the cute skeleton suit from Wal-mart, and I made the hat out of fleece.

Mind powers

Monday, October 26, 2009


I never had any cravings when I was pregnant, but now that I can't have certain items, I am craving them like crazy. These chocolate-mayonnaise cupcakes with a meringue-like frosting hit the spot. I've also set about making all sorts of cookies to fulfill my sweet tooth, but it's hard to get cookies right when you substitute oil for butter.


Now that we know what's going on with Cecilia's stomach, and can start to introduce her to solid foods. I spent a couple of hours making all sorts of baby food and freezing it for future use. She now has apple, pear, butternut squash, sweet potato, and zucchini purees.

Somewhat disappointing

Most women tend to rapidly lose weight after being on a dairy and soy free diet. But not me. I've managed to cook plenty of food for myself, I just can't eat out anymore.

The diagnosis

So, Cecilia has a hypersensitivity to dairy and soy proteins. Apparently, 50% of dairy protein allergy kids are also allergic to soy proteins, so I'm off soy as a precaution. She has been improving, and we haven't seen any more blood in her stool for several weeks. But, as of last week, I experimented with a soy-laden dinner, and sure enough she had blood in her stools the next day. So, guess I am officially off dairy and soy until she's weaned or one year-old.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Dirty work

Basically right after her visit to the doctor, things have been going okay on the stool front. I've still been collecting samples - gross - but things seem to be better. This may mean that my no dairy no soy diet could be paying off. Which is good. But also bad, because I'll have to continue abstaining from dairy and soy for more than a month now. I pretty much can't eat out anymore - at least not fast food.

Next step

So, Cecilia went to her 4 month check up (and got more shots, ouch). She's had blood in her stools for about three weeks now, two of which were during my no dairy no soy diet. So...we get to start testing. I got four vials to fill with baby poop. Yay!

Soy is in everything!

It really is! I've found it in chicken broth, canned tuna, bread crumbs, even in a rice milk ice cream (soy lecithin was in the chocolate chips). Basically, I've been cooking all my meals and baking my own bread. It's given me an opportunity to go through my middle-eastern cookbooks since they base a lot of their cuisine on olive oil. But kofta without yogurt sauce is a little disappointing. Soy, however, is not in hot dogs.

Dairy and Soy alternatives

Almond Breeze has soy lecithin. Who would've guessed. Soy lecithin doesn't usually affect people with soy allergies, but I need to be as thorough as possible. The bit I did have was pretty tasty, but too sweet for a milk substitute. Rice milk tastes like liquid rice, but it's good enough for me. Works well in cereal and as an alternative to water. I have found other almond milk drinks without soy lecithin, but I was able to buy rice milk at Costco, so it is the drink of choice for the time being.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Four months and no sleep makes Laura insane

It's amazing how long one can survive without a full night's sleep. Cecilia's had issues that tend to disturb her sleep, and therefore my sleep. I really only get about 3 hours sleep in one sitting. We've had our hands quite full, more than was expected. And Cecilia has brought about a whole new issue that we never anticipated, and now, I am on a no dairy no soy diet. Goodbye to everything I love to eat. No dairy wasn't too big a deal because I had basically already given up dairy in an attempt to help Cecilia with her digestion, but at least I had Chinese food. Well, not anymore - no soy! Basically, I can't eat any processed foods and have to be careful about eating out. Cecilia's had gastrointestinal issues that may be due to me eating dairy and soy, so we are going to try out this restrictive diet for about a month and see if things get better. Even a small slice of cheese could cause problems, I have to watch everything I eat. Luckily I already like to cook, so that's not an obstacle, but the recipe list is limited. Wish me luck!

Developing motor skills

Whew! Finally got around to posting a few comics. This one is from a while ago. Cecilia's been learning motor control, but she tends to get frustrated when she can't acheive what she wants. Seth says she must take after him. At the time of this comic she was just learning how to reach and grab for stuff, but now whe can roll over! I'm so slow to post...

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Cupcake Smackdown

We went to a
Cupcake Smackdown in Austin the other week and I made Cecilia a knitted hat to go with the theme. It got her into a lot of people's photo albums and blogs (like here and here). I even managed to sell one, and will make more to sell through etsy.


I've been needing one for so long (haha, "long"). My parents were visiting so it was the perfect opportunity, but my mom nearly fainted when she saw how much I cut off. Just in time, too, since Cecilia has been grabbing at things constantly.

Everything is precious

I actually found this more hilarious than precious. And no, I did not take a photo of the event.

Monday, July 27, 2009


At her 2 month pediatrician visit we were told we needed to start giving her vitamins (mainly for the vitamin D). So I went to the store and got a liquid multi-vitamin for babies. She has to get a full 1 mL of vitamin liquid every day! That's a lot of fluid, like half her stomach. She didn't like it one bit and managed to spit out nearly all the liquid while making a very upset face. Now, we have to try to get the liquid way in the bacl of her throat and she takes a few seconds to choke it down, all the while giving us a painful expression. I don't blame her, that stuff is nasty.

Two months old!

Small goals part 2

Yes! I went grocery shopping all by myself with Cecilia. That is worth a pat on the back! She ended up falling asleep in the carrier by the end of the trip. Having a baby attached to your front is a little awkward when putting groceries away, but she really likes getting to be part of the action.

Small goals part 1

I've made blueberry pie often enough, yet nowadays I can't seem to get the filling right. The crust came out perfect, but the filling was all liquid surrounding very firm blueberries. Last time I made blueberry pie, the berries didn't burst and I had hard bits of sugar and tapioca floating between the blueberries. So this time I tried a recipe with cornstarch, and the liquid didn't solidify enough. The flavor was good, so maybe next time.


He ran from the backyard to the front to avoid the swarm of wasps. No worries though, we have gotten rid of the hive. I'm just glad I didn't get stung.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Why I'm always tired

This happens at during least one waking per night. It can last anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours for me to attempt to get her to sleep in her crib so that I can sleep in the bed. I've even tried to wait out the fussiness, but her grumblings will just accelerate until I manage to hold her for the required amount of time before placing her in the crib.

Why nothing gets done...

She takes very irregular naps. Sometimes they last for 2 hours, others only 20 minutes. Needless to say I don't get much done other than attempt to make up for lost sleep.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Week 4: Pediatrician visit

When she was just born, Cecilia had to have her blood taken several times from her foot and she rarely showed any real discomfort. Then, at the two week doctor's visit she got another blood sample and went ballistic. It took me about half an hour and some comfort nursing to get her to calm down enough to place her in the car seat. So, when we had her one month check up I was prepared for her to cry inconsolably again, but she seemed to be just fine. I don't know if it's the fact that Seth held her, but it was no big deal. I have heard that the first vaccination visit (two months) is another painful crying session, so I'll be prepared for that.

Week 4: Daily routine

The sleep part is getting better, I'm improving on my nap-taking. Plus, she's beginning to sleep for longer stretches of time at night. Although, she still tends to be pretty fussy about falling asleep in her crib around 4am and I tend to pass out on our cozy chair with her in my arms for brief stretches of time.

Week 3

Friday, June 26, 2009

Week 2: Forced effort

Never knew a baby's face could turn so red and scrunch up so much just to pass a bowel movement. She can strain for a surprising amount of time before accomplishing anything, making all sorts of faces and grunting noises in the process. It clearly seems difficult to poop while laying down (in fact, she likes to be propped upright in her swing chair - we've officially named it the poop chair).

Week 2: Spelling issues

At the hospital we asked all sorts of people how they would spell Cecilia. And the answers were split nearly 50/50. We've unfortunately doomed Cecilia to have to deal with this for the rest of her life. Even I've spelled her name both ways until we finally settled on an official (on the birth certificate and SS card) spelling.

Week 2: Pediatrician visit

Not everyone can appreciate the unique flavor that is Seth's humor. The pediatrician did eventually laugh, but it took her a moment before the absurdity of the statement sank in.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

One month old!

Week 1: Switch to cloth diapers

Yes, we are using old school cloth diapers. They tend to soak through with urine pretty quick, so we are doing all sorts of laundry. But it still seems way cheaper than disposable diapers, especially when she can go through about 4 diapers in ten minutes. Cecilia is not fond of having a dirty diaper on her body.

Week 1: What a newborn can sleep through

The vacuum surprised me most of all. Although, she doesn't sleep quite as deeply anymore.

Week 1: Still pregnant?

Things are looking much better nowadays. It's just flabby skin and non-baby weight gain left. I just look like a pudge.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Start of a new life

I've finally managed to upload a few comics since the big day. Hopefully, I can trickle some more in over the month as things begin to settle down. Cecilia is growing more and more each day and gives me plenty of material to draw. Thanks for sticking with the blog, it will get more regular soon!

Pain tolerance

A whole week early!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

New addition!

After still not getting a chance to update, I ended up going into labor a week early! We are the proud parents of Cecilia Ann Williams, 7lbs 4oz born May 18, 2009. Understandably, things at home have become quite busy.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


My friend Ryan ( finally got around to making haggis this weekend, and I got to try it. For those of you who don't know, haggis is a Scottish dish composed of mainly ground sheep organs and oatmeal cooked in a sheep's stomach. When I arrived all the filling was cooked, and smelling remarkably delicious. Then, everything was placed inside a stomach and boiled for about 3.5 hours, and it began to smell like stomach. When all was done, we cut into the steaming sack and dug in with fingers for the first taste. And, sorry to say it, I found the filling incredibly reminiscent of canned dog food (I worked for 4 years at a dog kennel, so I have tasted my fair share of dog food). Now, it is a good-quality canned dog food, but dog food all the same. It had a rich meaty flavor, but a bit strong in the liver taste (not quite to my preference). But, when you eat it with just a dab of Dijon mustard, the liver taste was cut drastically and it was quite tasty. Plus, it was served with mashed rutabagas, which were incredibly delicious!

So, overall an amzing feat of cookery. Would I seek out haggis in the future? Perhaps in Scotland, but otherwise it seemed like way too much work for the outcome. A great eating experience, though.

Baby Shower

My friends threw an incredible "Baby celebration" for us this Saturday. Thank you Krissy, Jennifer, and Amanda for an amazing party, it was great!! Friends are remarkably generous when it comes to a new baby. Yay for us! We are now fairly well-stocked in essentials like diapers and wipes - at least for the first month ^_^ Really, thank you everyone for attending the party and for all the great gifts!

It's almost time!

I'm not touching you....nah nah na nah

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Comfort food

Childbirth class

Women are basically in pain for an entire 24 hours, sometimes more. Not looking forward to it. One woman actually began to cry and left the class after the first video we watched about labor and birth.

We took a class that met one day and lasted 5 hours. I value the information we learned, but the class really didn't seem worth it because all we did was watch a string of videos. There was a brief amount of relaxation and breathing techniques taught, but it was all kind of self-explanatory. Then, at the very end we went for a brief tour of the maternity ward at the hospital. The Women's center is completely new at this hospital and is still being worked on. After the tour our host, along with 6 couples took the elevator back to the first floor when the doors violently shut, allowing only one couple to leave. It then remained shut while we called for help and waited close to half an hour for the maintenance crew to get the doors open. If we had been trapped any longer, things could have gotten bad. It's not a good idea to lock 5 pregnant women in an unventilated elevator for more than 30 minutes.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Don't use your stomach as a table

It's harder to read books since becoming pregnant because my tummy gets in the way. So, I have become accustomed to basically laying the book on my stomach while I read. Problem is, this tends to make the baby uncomfortable because she always seems to move around a lot when I do this. Tonight, I was sipping some hot chocolate and precariously balancing my book when she managed to kick so violently that I spilled all over my shirt and the couch.


I had some friends over for a Cuban-themed dinner of crispy shredded beef with garlic-scented rice and black beans. The food turned out tasty (particularly the rice), but the best part of the dinner was the dessert. I made cream puffs for the first time from the book "The Sweet Spot" by Pichet Ong. I did, however, discover that you should never overfill an icing bag. It makes a mess. The puffs were filled with ginger cream, and lime cream. The ginger cream was from the book made by mixing a ginger-flavored pastry cream with whipped cream. And the lime cream was my spur of the moment filling I made by mixing in some lime curd with the ginger cream. Both were tasty, but the ginger flavor was sooooo mild, you couldn't have known it was there in a blind tasting (except Seth, he has a remarkably good palette). Anyway, I would definitely make the recipe again, but maybe with a green tea filling instead.