Hi everyone –

Sorry we haven’t posted in January. It’s been busy with visits from Nana, Pop and Aunt Ash, many, many doctors’ appointments, two uriniary tract infections and a really bad diaper rash. Harper had a wonderful first Christmas and received more toys than any six-month-old could ever play with. Her room looks like Toys R Us exploded.

We met with a plastic surgeon in Bristol who says he is comfortable doing the surgeries to remove her birthmark. The good news is that it will take three or four surgeries (Chelsea thought it would take more), and that it can be done in Bristol. The bad news is that the surgeries will leave big scars and there’s a pretty significant risk of doing damage to her facial nerves. The plan is to start around one year of age.

We also met with two orthopedic surgeons – one in Bristol, one in Knoxville – about Harper’s right hip. It’s dysplastic meaning the joint doesn’t fit together properly. The plan is to wait and see how well she can walk before deciding on a course of action. If she doesn’t walk much, we’ll probably not have to do much to address the hip issue. If she does walk well, she’ll have surgery to fix it. We’ll revisit the hip issue around 18 months.

Her regular appointment with her neurosurgeon went well. He says she’s doing great.

Harper has also had two urinary tract infections since December. She’s taking antibiotics for the infection and will stay on a low dose of antibiotics for six months. If she has a break-through infection during that time, we’ll be referred to a urologist which means another doctor in Harper’s retinue. Yay! But we’ve always known a urologist would likely be in her future and are a little surprised she hasn’t had to see one already.

All things considered, she’s really doing well. She laughs all the time and is doing pretty well turning over. She’s bearing quite a bit of weight on her legs too. We think she’s teething which is tons of fun. And, she’s started eating more solid foods like rice cereal and fruit.

Here are some new pictures to enjoy, including one of Harper after Nick tried feeding her peaches. Clean up required a fire hose.