The Chazz Lately: Edition III

So what has Mr. Chazz been up to this week?

Well besides the usual trouble-making like climbing the TV stand and keeping the dogs fed (very well!), Chazz has been learning in leaps and bounds!

It is crazy how his mind is like a sponge! Here is what has amazed me this week about Chazz:

•True Toddlerhood
Chazz has been toddling like a pro this week. He went from taking 5 steps at a time to 10, and now he gets from room to room by cruising from couch to clock to wall to, well you get it.

•Very True Toddlerhood
Chazz loves to throw tantrums these days by crumbling to the ground and bonking his head on the wood floors repetedly.
It can be quite frustrating because it looks like it could hurt and my first response is always to want to pick him up and cuddle.

But also makes me do this nervous-laugh. It’s SO DRAMATIC and I am sooo not. Toddlers are dramatics, y’all!

•Chazz has also taken up throwing when he is upset. He throws spoons, cups, candles…. ahhh yes. A thrower. He looks at you right after to make sure he has gotten the point across.

I’m teaching him a few more signs that might help him communicate more and ease some of that frustration.

•Skills, Mad Skills
This kid is getting so smart! He “walks” me around the house, just holding on to one of my hands for balance. He’s really starting to get this walking thing.

This past week, he went from taking 5 steps at a time to 10. And now he attempts to walk anytime he can.

But yesterday around naptime, he walked me right into the bedroom and over to his bed. Wow!

So I put Chazz down right then and there for his nap. And he was out like a light. (For a little bit anyways!)

Toddlerhood is a funny time. Challenging, but full of laughs. Chazz knows just how to make us laugh.

He has taken to hiding food (mostly Kix cereal) in his diaper. While a little icky, it’s also a little bit funny to pull him out of his highchair and see Kix trickling out of a half open diaper.

We like to joke that he’s saving it for later. Or stuffing his diaper 🙂

•Hit And Run!
Chazz made me laugh so hard I snorted last week.

He was pushing around the car that helps him walk around when Roman came around the corner, and Chazz “sped up” and steered straight to his Daddy, as if to run him over. Then he “drove off” maniacally laughing, as if it were the funniest thing ever.

Little Crazy Butt!

So Chazz Man has been quite the funny man this week (although a tad bit dramatic at times!), a super-learner, and is somewhat becoming a better communicator.

Oh my! What a good week in toddlerhood.

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10 Steps And Counting

Tuff Muffin: The Grand Opening + ONH Info-Drive

Today is a big day for the Forever & After Family!

It isn’t just my birthday. 🙂

After a lot of hard work and even more help, my own boutique, Tuff Muffin, is now OPEN!

And there are quite a few events going on around the interwebs to celebrate. (Pssst! A giveaway!)

First of all,
Go check out the Tuff Muffin goodies:
*Baby Leggings
*Bandana Bibs

Next, be sure to head over to my blogging mamafriend’s blog Domestic, But Not Martha for one heck of a giveaway to kick off Tuff Muffin. (thank you Crystal, for all of your help, support, and advice <3)

And right here on my blog is a little info on Optic Nerve Hypoplasia and a new page on Chazz’s Story so far.

Last week, I announced I would be opening up shop today (My Birthday!) in honor of Chazz and to raise awareness for Optic Nerve Hypoplasia.

The Tuff Muffin proceeds all go to help with Chazz’s medical expenses. One day they may even help fund a procedure to help him see better.

*Also, 10% of every sale from the Grand Opening (Jan 25th – 29th) will be donated to The Vision Center at The Children’s Hospital in LA. They are one of the leading researchers of ONH and they need our support!*

They provide a ton of information and resources to question-filled parents like us.
{Feel free to share any of the ONH information with your followers, it helps to spread awareness, and also counts as an entry to the giveaway.}

If I can cause even a little Internet ripple of information, it might reach just the mama looking for it.

So, What Is ONH?
Optic Nerve Hypoplasia is when the optic nerve is underdeveloped. Millions of these tiny nerve endings form in the early weeks of pregnancy. Small optic nerves are unable to send a full picture back to the brain, making it hard to see. Some can only see shadows and light or dark, while others don’t even know they have it.

People with ONH can also have an abnormally developed brain and/or Pituitary Gland. In turn this means they don’t produce enough growth hormone (among others like testosterone and even those that control things like your body’s hydration.)

Chazz is in the 2nd %ile for growth. (BTW, he was born an 8lb 5oz stout baby in the 45%ile!)

Yep. Chazz faces a lot every day. And it is just the beginning of a long journey.

But we know nothing is going to stop our Tuff Muffin! Read more about Chazz’s Story and ONH on the new page!

*Please pass on this info so that those looking for answers might see it*

5 Steps And Counting

Ok, maybe it’s not officially official, but the kid took five FIVE big kid steps for me on Saturday. And then he turned around and did the same thing for Roman and I on Sunday.

I can’t even believe it! But it went a little something like this:

Chazz clings to my leg while attempting to walk. But this time, he let go and took three steps towards our grandfather clock. He paused for a moment to decide if he should keep going or sit, I think. Mid-squat he decided to go for it and took two more steps and made it!

What a champ! He had that look of pure determination on his face. And he giggled the whole way. I think he like the feeling of being free. Being mobile.

And to do it twice? In one weekend? That must mean he’s really thinking about being a walking dude. A big kid!

Speaking of big kids, we are taking him to check out a daycare today at a church right by my work. I’m a little nervous, Roman is really nervous 🙂 but I think with all of our new work schedules (yay! No more being layed off!) a half day at daycare will be a good thing got everyone. Sleep for Roman, and a little social interaction for the Chazz-man.

I think it’s a little cute how worried Roman is about putting Chazz into a daycare. I mean he is really worried. Probably only even thinking about it because of the promise of sleep. And at the same time I totally know how he feels. But 4 hours a few days a week will be a great little tester phase for everyone.

I will keep you posted on our little walking adventurer!

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Motherhood Is: A Good Sense of Humor

Quick post before work. Or before I pass out from pure exhaustion.

One of the two!

Roman started at his new job yesterday. What a blessing! He works the night shift, which is officially lamesauce, but hey. I shouldn’t complain!

We have had a pretty rough year with layoffs and all, so we are both happy little clams (:) to feel like we might actually get ahead in this lifetime.

As I am typing this, Chazz I sitting IN his toy bucket being an absolute doll-face. Besides whomping my face with a yellow ball, saying something that I think means “eyes.”

Yes Chazz, those were are my eyes! Smart boy.

Oh, and the camera?

That’s in the diaper bag. In the car. With ALL of the diapers.

The car Roman drove to work last night.

Ya. Major fail. I didn’t even notice there were only two diapers in the house until well after Roman left.

And of course, The Big Poopsplosion of 2011 occured last night. Because really, when else would it have happened? 🙂

So there I was at 4:30 am with a wide awake baby and no diapers.
A race against time with a nakey baby!

So we (well, Chazz) hung out in the buff for a bit. Until breakfast.

Breakfast always = the morning poop.

So I had to get crafty and use a swim diaper from last summer and and old t-shirt.

Crafty, huh?!

Yes, motherhood is keeping a good sense of humor when these sort of things happen!

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The Chazz Lately: Edition II

What a busy week for Chazz. Our Little Smartie-Pants. Oh my, he is only getting more and more clever! This past week, especially, Chazz’s brain seems to be sponging up whatever it can.

From signing like a pro to climbing EVERYTHING, he is really growing in the brain department.

So this week’s The Chazz Lately will be all about his royal smartness. ❤

Chazz Man also turned 14 Months
on the 14th. How is that?!? Didn’t we just bring bring him home from the hospital?

•Chazz is really using that sign language! Way back when we first started showing Chazz a few signs, we didn’t know just how effective it was going to be! Chazz only knows a few signs, like Milk, Mom & Dad, and Eat, but it sure makes communicating that much easier. When he wants milk? He can sign it rather than get frustrated.

And the look on his face when you understand him is priceless. He loves that he can ask and recieve, and we get him.

We really need to teach him a few more so he can keep going! Especially since TALKING English doesn’t really seem to be a top priority for him, he much prefers Chazz-ese.

•Last Wednesday Chazz started turning the pages of his books all by himself. He flipped through books all hy himself, and wasn’t letting me help AT ALL! If I tried to, he would close the book and start all over. Ahh, yes he is so my child!

He even has a few favorite books. The first is a book he has has since birth, called I Am A Bunny. The illustrations are all done by Richard Scarry, and we both love the pictures. Chazz points at the bunny as he goes through the seasons.

His other favorite book is one of those pop-up musical types. Chazz has already ripped off a window and nommed on a cat’s ear, but he just loves it. He tries to “read” Twinkle Twinkle Little Star before bed and listen to the lullaby. He points at the twinkling star on the last page.

•Speaking of a smartie-pants: if I move something Chazz isn’t supposed to have, he no longer just forgets it an moves on. Oh no. Now it is a challenge for him. Either a duel, to scream his head off in hopes of us giving in. Or an adventure, where he must find a way to climb up however high to get it. {And give his poor Mama a heart attack.}

What a smart little tyrant. 😀

•Today, I told Chazz what a cute nose he had, and he pointed to his nose! {and like a typical boy, tried to pick it :-)} He also points to his lips and eyes when you ask him to. Well, most of the time!

I don’t even when he could pick that up. I don’t remember sitting down and point them all out. But it doesn’t matter, he is a quick learner on his own!

Maybe all those times I’m telling to stop poking my eyes!??

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I Need Your Help To Spread The Word!

I’m not one to ask for help. I like to do it all on my own, no matter what. Or at least try!

But we all know that doesn’t always work. Or at least I am starting to figure that out.

So when I put out a call for help from all my Twitter mompreneurs, it was a hard thing to do, okay!

But wow to all of the mamas willing to share their tips and talents to help me get my own dream up and running. I’m humbled by everyone’s willingness to help.

What dream, you ask?

Oh the one I haven’t been telling you about! The one that has been floating around in my brain and leaving fabric scraps all over my house.

Yah, that one.

Well it’s time, FAB family and readers whom I love, to clue you in.

I am opening an online boutique, Tuff Muffin

Two reasons have inspired me to do this: to help offset some of Chazz’s upcoming medical expenses and to raise awareness about his visual impairment, Optic Nerve Hypoplasia.

ONH is quickly becoming the most common cause of childhood blindness, yet there is still so little information and resource available. Let alone support.

I really want to change that.

So along with launching my boutique selling bandana bibs, I have been inspired to spread awareness about the cause behind my shop. And I would love help to spread the facts!

I plan to “open” on January 25th.
{Which is also my birthday so expect a giveaway, but more on that later!}

Basically, I want to take over the blogosphere got a day and flood it with information on ONH and offer my support. {No biggie.}

Even if it only helps one mama like me not to feel so overwhelmed by such a diagnosis. Even if I could just help one parent by answering a question for them. Or even just providing a listening ear.


On the big day, I will of course have the giveaway for bandana bibs from my shop posted, along with a bunch of information on ONH. Extra entries will be awarded for spreading the word through facebook or Twitter.

For those wanting to help spread the word on their own blogs, I am offering a little thank you. In exchange for sharing the post about ONH with your readers, I will display your blog or shop button on my sidebar for 1 month, on the new About ONH page FOREVER as a supporter, and entries toward the giveaway.

I really want to offer my heart and hand to others going through what we have this past year. I don’t want another mama googling about ONH until all hours of the morning, desperate for information. Desperate for answers and direction.

I want to help. I want to spread the information. And I know it is sometimes hard to ask for help, or to know where to find it.

But I think we help can change that. Help me spread the word! If you want to join in, email me foreverandafterblog at yahoo dot com, comment below with your email, or even catch me on Twitter @4EverAfterBlog.

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