Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Baby Formula Calculator

We have had to experiment with different concentrations of baby formula; oddly enough I could not find an online calculator to let me easily figure out how much water and formula to mix to obtain the concentration (calories per ounce) that I wanted.

So I made this -- I hope you find it useful! (Use arrow keys to navigate.)

This formula calculator assumes that your formula follows the same "standard" that I've seen on every formula I've checked; that is, 1 scoop of formula per 2 oz of water to create formula with 20 calories per ounce.

On the formula cans I checked, this "caloric density" was stated in the nutrition area as 100 calories per 5 oz serving. They also stated that each scoop of formula added 0.2 oz to the final volume; so that's what I used in the calculations.

This calculator lets you run the numbers 3 different ways:

1) If you are trying to hit a particular total number of calories with a particular caloric density -- for example if you are making up a pitcher for the day -- the first row should do the trick. Just enter your calorie target and desired concentration in the green cells.

2) As a variation on #1, if you have already figured out that you plan to use a particular number of scoops of formula and know the caloric density you need, try the second version.

2) If, instead, you want to find out what caloric density a particular combination of water and scoops would yield, the third row has you covered.

If you find this useful please drop me a comment! (Also if there are any other calculation variations that you would find extremely helpful, let me know and I'll improve the calculator if I can.)

Thursday, August 15, 2013

4/3 years old!

Thank goodness I'm cute...
Our "Maddie Maddie" is 16 months old today.

Hard to believe. The last few months have been a blur as we've doubled down on trying to get her back on track; it's still been impossible thus far to get all of her prescribed therapies in, and she's not finishing her pitchers of formula these days... which just means we have more work ahead of us.

She's 16 months; but in many ways is the equivalent of a 6-month-old. She's responsive and interested in people, toys, etc... but is stuck in a body that just hasn't developed yet.

We'll get there -- and today things are still far better than they were just a few months ago -- but just for posterity here's where we sit today:

  • She can't yet walk, crawl, hold in "4-point", or even sit unassisted.
  • Still waiting for that first real word! (by now Sydney had a 250+ word vocabulary)
  • Spending ~20 hours/day tending to Maddie, one way or another...
  • Fighting constantly to get enough food in her g-tube
  • Alternating nights "on duty"... she is on the pump all night, so you need to change the bag once around 1-2am, and also need to vent Maddie between 4 and 10 times a night. We tag out at 6am so the night person can get a three hour nap, at least...
  • In theory, we're supposed to have her in her ankle braces at least an hour in the morning and in the afternoon.
  • Should be putting her in her stander at least twice a day...
  • Should be practicing eating purees 2-3 times/day...
  • Floor time -- she needs as much as she can get. But with her tummy it's a challenge to get 10 minutes/day.
  • Poops and baths are generally a 2-person job, due to the vent tube.
  • Bubbles vent gurgle vent bubbles vent vent vent... aaaaaarch!... vent...
She clearly wants to move and do things, which means everything. And at least we are, perhaps, done with the retching at last! Nothing we did; she seems to finally be growing out of that... and it's been a few weeks at least since the last non-stop full-volume inconsolable thrashing and screaming fit at 1am. (Wow gas pains are fun, right?)

Still things are progressing, albeit slowly. One day this will all just be a memory. The day we get to purge our house of all the medical supplies that currently occupy her room and the kitchen -- well, that will be a beautiful day.

"We put one foot in front of the other..."