Monday, April 26, 2010

Vacation Time

The searing heat of these sizzling summer days makes living in the city very uncomfortable right now. A recent hike in power rates has also raised the ire of most people, who discovered this month that a minimal increase in consumption has resulted in a 50% increase in rates. Not a good combination.

Little A's nanny went on her annual holiday last week, which meant no work for me at the shop and full-blown Cinderella-with-child mode at home. Big A tried his best to help by taking Little A swimming every day, having his mum cook us a week's worth of meals to store in our freezer, and, best of all, booking us a 4 day holiday in the mountains.

We timed the car trips around Little A's schedule, wanting the bulk of the 5 hour ride to encompass naptime. Things worked out perfectly. The weather was perfect, and Little A discovered that grass is not the enemy after all but rather fun to walk on as he trekked up and down around the pine trees. Every morning, he spent an hour with me at the Kids' Club before we went on family adventures. We slept well, ate well and best of all, I had no cooking or washing up or washing to do - until we got home.

Now, it's back to reality until Nanny gets back midweek, and until the next little mini-break.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Munch Munch

Everyone is all about healthy eating these days. No fat, no carbs, no meat, no dairy. My husband and I are lucky to be blessed with fast metabolisms, which Little A appears to have inherited, but I do believe in the importance of a balanced diet for the entire family and make sure that every meal served on my table has some vegetable content or side dish.

It doesn't help that I married a caveman who claims veggies are only for rabbits. He does eat the few things - lettuce in salads, sandwiches, tacos and the occasional piece of roast veg - but the only time he will eat an entirely vegetarian meal is when his mum sends over a dish made from the fruit of the Moringa plant cooked with red peppers, onions, garlic and ginger. He consumes the entire bowl, without sharing, with a massive plate of white rice.

Little A, thankfully, is a veg eater. He has a frightening like of tinned meats and bacon but dislikes sweet things, so refuses fruit of any kind, along with cakes, chocolate and other sweets. His only snack food of choice is unsweetened corn flakes. Since he has long stopped drinking milk and no longer eats anything with casein, I worry that he doesn't get enough of the nutrients he needs. His sporadic medical checkups indicate that his growth is on track, and he is taller than most of his classmates as well as full of energy, and as he sleeps and poops well, I suppose there is no need for concern.

My sisters' daughters and many of my friends' children are terribly picky eaters, refusing most foods except for bread, french fries or plain pasta and pizza. Their parents keep the kids' diets as balanced as they can with plenty of milk, so I suppose I out to be nothing but thankful that my son eats well. And so I am.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Moving Forward

Our follow-up visit to the first Developmental Pediatrician we consulted took place this afternoon. Following the BAER hearing test last December, we visited an ENT to check whether there was anything wrong with Little A's ear. All there was was a buildup of earwax that caused a blockage, which explained the "peripheral hearing loss".

The Dev Ped was very pleased with Little A's improvement over the course of his past 3 months' twice weekly Occupational Therapy. His eye contact is much more consistent and he is less hyperactive, actually sitting down in a chair for a length of time (though this could have been because he was past his naptime and was actually quite sleepy). More importantly, he sat down to complete every tabletop task assigned to him with a minimum of prompting.

The Casein Free Diet seems to be working, so the next step is to remove gluten from Little A's diet, which is much more of a challenge as it not only takes 9 months to be fully eliminated from the human body, it is present invisibly in so many foods, from soy sauce to cornflakes, Little A's only snack food of choice.

The doctor also told us to get in the queue for a Speech Therapist, as this is the only thing Little A is really still lacking. In the Philippines, only 30 individuals are licensed as Speech Therapists every year, and of those 30, most seek greener pastures abroad. So they are a limited and therefore valuable commodity.

This week, with summer in full swing, Little A resumes preschool for a 6.5 week period, along with his continued twice weekly OT sessions. We're keeping our fingers crossed that things continue to move forward.