Thursday, December 30, 2010

Sicky sicky snot face!

Ha - unfortunately, it's not a playground name calling game...Mary Louise and David have their first official cold, first ear infections, and as of last night, started their very first round of "the pink stuff" (Amoxicillan).

Last night went pretty well. They slept until 1am - which is unusual for them. I checked on them and a little while later, they were up and wanting a little TLC and fresh bottles. They then went back to sleep and stayed in bed until about 7am. When they woke, they both looked quite a bit better as compared to the evening before.

Mary Louise ate some breakfast after generally refusing food for a day or 2. David's appetite has remained pretty consistent. They have lots of clear mucous running from their noses, an occasional cough, and periodic fevers ranging from 99 to 102 degrees F. Overall, Mary Louise looks pretty puny. David looks a little pale - or has a flushed face with a fever, but is doing a bit better than his sister.

When we went to the doctor yesterday, he said we'd caught things very early - but as they were both showing signs of double middle ear infections due to all of the nasal and sinus congestion, he thought it best to start the antibiotics as soon as possible. He also gave us something for their sinus trouble and ok'd Motrin for the higher fevers. I must say, I'm really glad we have such good medicine takers on our hands! Though the doctor couldn't tell me what I wanted to hear the most - that I am an over-protective mother and there is nothing wrong with my sweet babies - he did in fact quell my number 2 and 3 worries - Mary Louise and David have clear chest sounds and this is not the beginning of RSV. So all in all, I can't complain.

They are truly some of the best patients ever! Of course they are fussy and clingy - but they open their mouths and come to get most of their medicine without any issue AND they both blow their noses!!!! ha! I started teaching Mary Louise to blow her nose way back when she was on oxygen (oh that's right - I started her on Kleenex before she even hit 5 pounds!). She always HATED bulb suctioning so I wanted to get away from it as soon as I could. Boy, did that kid catch on! (as you can see here - nevermind the giant wagon in the middle of our house - it is the babies' "big" Christmas present from Santa...)

As of this morning, David has also learned to wipe and blow his own nose. So, I suppose I'll just sit back and eat bons bons all day...or blow MY nose as I seem to be coming down with the same sinkin' bug they have - and Brent just called...his throat hurts...blegh.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A very Merry Christmas INDEED!!

We've just arrived to our home sweet home after a wonderful visit with Ma Mere and Pops...

The babies and I left on the 23rd to pop in on Mommom and the boys on our way to Ma Mere and Pops' house. Uncle Collin was in the states for a quick visit between semesters. We stayed for a couple of days, set the pooches up, and saw the boys and Mommom off to St. Augustine before making the rest of our trek to MS.

We stayed there for just under a week and had so. much. fun. seriously. Auntie Zoo came to town for a quick visit. We finally made it to the family Christmas Eve celebration. The babies really behaved amazingly well and Brent and I were so so happy to finally give a few of the out of town family members an opportunity to meet them.

Christmas day was beautiful...and can I just say that Mary Louise and David may just be a tad over indulged...sometimes...every so often...ok. I know. It wasn't necessary to quite literally shower them with gifts and new toys when they are perfectly happy with the boxes they came in...but WE sure had fun doing it!! The day was gorgeous. The food - delicious. And I even made the most of a few quiet moments to give quiet thanks for my very very many blessings.

This has not been the easiest of holiday seasons for me. But, in the end, I feel at peace knowing that the lessons I've learned have not been wasted, moments and opportunities have not been squandered, and that I am exactly where I need and want to be - and for that, I am happily, and eternally grateful.

After the Christmas day festivities, we had a relaxing few days tagging along to Pops' farm to feed Wiley (his horse). David (the fearless) gave Wiley a pat on the nose and even sat on his back for a moment or 2. Mary Louise, ever the cautious one, clung to me tighter than velcro - but peaked at Wiley a few times out of the corner of her eye. Given time, I know she'd do just fine...

There is a great park nearby as well and on a pretty afternoon, Ma Mere and I piled the babies in the wagon and walked down to the toddlers' section of the playground. We had a grand time with Mary Louise and David climbing, running and exploring the smaller equipment.

Yesterday, we strolled down the main shopping section of Ocean Springs. The babies rested in their carriers strapped securely to Mom and Dad. We had a nice time as there were no crowds, it was outside in the fresh air, and with the babies happy, we could take our time to window shop.

Yesterday afternoon and through the night, Mary Louise and David started with runny noses and fevers...I'll leave that to another post as this one truly should be for nothing more than Christmas happies.

Photos to follow soon!!


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Rock Rock

We made our way to Mommom's house sans Brent to visit for a couple of days. Uncle Collin is in from the island where he attends medical school so I was really excited to fit a little visit in with him as well as Uncle Kyle, Sean and Mommom as we haven't seen them in almost a month.

We also made it to the prayer service for my beloved home church just prior to demolition. Seeing it first hand can only be described as breathtakingly tragic. Having said that, I am glad that I took advantage of the chance to have just a moment's peace before the new beginning broke through.

This evening, the boys were out doing their thing and Mommom and I were winding down to put Mary Louise and David to bed when the little ones discovered our childhood rockers. They had a grand time...

It was really neat to see my own children play in the exact spot - and rocker - where I spent so much time imagining, playing, and laughing.

Happy holidays to everyone - they'll only continue for us as we trek to Ma Mere and Pops' house tomorrow!!


Monday, December 20, 2010

Fun with Pops and Ma Mere!!

Visit Dec. 2010


Big Boy!!!!!

David has OFFICIALLY reached 19 pounds!!! Way to grow big boy!! Mary Louise is 19 pounds 14 ounces - ALMOST 20 pounds!!

With all of the teething and upset tummies, Mary Louise and David have not gained weight in a few weeks - so this is HUGE!

They've had their second Synagis shot of the season and seem to be doing a bit better than last time. Their nurse came just prior to nap time and I was ready with a dose of Tylenol as soon as she let me know she could come. So far so good. The nap seems to have worked for now.

These kiddos are definitely keeping me on my toes today...David has learned how to quietly and very efficiently open the pantry door - and dumped out a box of baking soda on the kitchen floor this morning. They have both learned how to climb onto chairs, and "surf". They can get down quite well though - and this wouldn't really bother me - but what one does, so must the other and the tiny rocker they love to play with really isn't made for that type of activity. So, up the stairs it fact, anything that doesn't weigh at least 50 pounds has been slowly making its way upstairs lately!

Check back later as I should have some new photos posted!!! (I am trying AGAIN to upload)


Saturday, December 18, 2010

Precious Moments

Mary Louise and David have been teething for oh...about a month or more now. We had a break this week which lasted exactly 2 days. But now, as of today, Mary Louise has 2 bottom teeth trying their best to break through. This would bring her new tooth count up to 5. David has at least 5 new ones already - but he has taken to chomping my finger so I dare not explore his poor gums for awhile...his latest bought with "the beast" as I've come to affectionately refer to teething by seems to have come to an end...for now.

This morning, Mary Louise brought me some of David's clothing...that HAD been neatly folded and put away in their closet. I said, "Mary Louise? Where did that clothing come from and how did you get it?" Mary Louise looked at me, looked at the clothing in her hands, handed it to me, grinned and (I kid you not) said, "Ho Ho Ho!"

Uncle Damon and Claire sent a tunnel to Mary Louise and David for Christmas. They LOVE it! They are so excited to climb through and explore. Yesterday afternoon, Brent and I were "looking" for them. I would call out their names, and all we would hear were giggles as the tunnel wiggled back and forth. They would calm down, get quiet and I would call again. They would giggle, and so on. This went on for at least half and hour. So much fun.

David has taken to climbing up the back of the pews during church. I'll leave that comment at that.

The other day, Mary Louise said something which, by the look on her face, was very serious. I asked her to repeat her sounds. She repeated the sounds and rhythm exactly. Obviously, she is trying to say something - and I feel it's only a matter of time before I figure out what that something is.

Brent and I, after some discussion, have decided to publicly refer to Mary Louise and David as "surviving triplets". Until now, we have nodded most of the time when a stranger approaches and asks if the babies are twins. I've never been comfortable with really answering the question at all as, well, they are not twins, but I have been afraid, exhausted, too upset, or just didn't want that face - the sympathetic look. I'm not sure how else to describe it. Anyhow, we tried it the other day. I got "the look" and quickly changed the subject to point out how well Mary Louise and David were doing. It went over well, I felt sort of liberated. Brent smiled - it's what works for us this moment.

Must run - Brent is keeping an eye on the sweet and very busy babes for a little longer so I can get a few minutes of rest. In the words of Mary Louise, "Ho Ho Ho!"


Monday, December 13, 2010

Then and Now...

Just for comparison...

Mary Louise in her bath tub at about 6 weeks old - during the first week of June 2009...

David in mid - June 2009 at about 3 pounds...this is his first bath given by us on Father's day!

and today...
Mary Louise in her first bath tub...

and David in his...


Saturday, December 11, 2010

There's fun to be had...

Even with the simplest things...

Take an empty envelope and a piece of twine from the mail today for example...

I love that there is an unspoken "ending" to their game of chase when Mary Louise begins to "read" her envelope and David quietly sits to play with his truck!

I also uploaded our photos and videos from the past month...well, since October. I will get into a habit of uploading more frequently. This is just silly...
oct nov 2010


Friday, December 10, 2010

Sharing is Caring!

We have been working very hard on sharing with Mary Louise and David so I thought I'd post our progress...

As of this morning...

Mary Louise...

and David...

Shared a cracker!

I am so proud of my little ones! We have purposely stayed away from words like "mine" and instead of "no" always always say, "no thank you". So far, it's worked out very well.

Way to go guys!!!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Wonderful weekend!

We had a fabulous visit with Ma Mere and Pops this past weekend. On Friday, they got here and spent lots of time just playing with Mary Louise and David and helping with bath and bed time. As much as I LOVE LOVE LOVE rocking my dearies to sleep every night, it makes me smile to take a little step back every so often and let someone else ta ta and fuss over them a bit...

We had a really nice - rather impromptu dinner and a long chat and were off to bed!

Saturday morning, Brent's parents got here extra early as Brent and I planned to go to a local walk and auction benefiting pancreatic cancer. We had planned on a breakfast date afterward...


Happened upon a great garage sale...I know - weird right? It was just around the corner from our house and the sellers were a local artist and her husband. Ma Mere and Pops were walking with the babies and saw an amazing armoire just begging to come home so they gave us a call. I honed in with my mad bargaining skills and got them to take WAY below their already fantastic asking price. We also picked up a few more odds and ends including antique sink fixtures, gas wall sconces, some stained glass, and some great old law book case glass doors that I've cleaned and am re-purposing as wall frames.

So we got our swag home and Ma Mere and I played with Mary Louise and David while Pops and Brent ran some errands. When we were all together again, we strolled down the street to the park by the lake so that Mary Louise and David could show off their mad sliding skills.

Can I just say that those babies LOVE the slide!! They climb, they swing on the bar above, the slide, they giggle, they fall on the ground, they climb, they slide, and they climb again. Brent and I take them to the park about 4 times per week now and to say that they have fun a SUCH and understatement. They are even sliding and climbing by themselves now!

We got to the park just time to play awhile before catching a Christmas parade. Funny how things sort of fell into place - we didn't even know a parade was happening until Brent and Pops caught a glimpse of the floats in preparation to run on their way home from the store!

It was nice - a relatively short and low key parade - perfect for Mary Louise and David's first experience of the kind. We watched and headed home for dinner, bath and bed time.

Sunday, we made it early church - a little late, but we were there just the same. We got to visit a little more with Ma Mere and Pops before they had to get on the road again for their trek home.

All in all, it was really a beautiful weekend with family - who could ask for anything more?

The SUPER exciting news of yesterday was little Miss Mary Louise looking at me, smiling, WAVING and saying, "bye bye!" She said it out of the blue - and so clearly! Then, yesterday afternoon, she saw her bottle on the counter, pointed and said, "ba ba". I'm so excited that they both seem to be making progress with their speech!


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Could it be?!?!?!?!

An actual END to our insurance saga?!?! It's so hard to believe that it might just be happening! Today, David was officially signed to be picked up by our group insurance policy once more on January 1st.

This has been a LONG road to travel people. Seriously. I could have gone my whole life without knowing the state insurance commission employees, and having their numbers stored in my cell phone. I could have lived just fine without knowing how to get tax ID numbers from businesses, without knowing that you have to demand to talk to the "Rapid Resolutions" department every. single. week. when yet another bill comes in marked with a big fat DENIED stamp. Brent and I would have been ok without yet ANOTHER serious source of stress in our lives and marriage (I mean because having a wife in acute kidney failure, loosing and son, and having 2 surviving children barely hang on is quite enough at one time thank you - nevermind receiving the news that our ins. company wants to drop our INFANT son!) But enough about that - just a tiny digression...

David has been resigned. The (newest) law was supposed to take effect in September...6 months post initial signing into federal law. However, I phoned...all the people I could phone about it and got no where. Ok - not just no one point, I'm pretty sure I was actually pedaling backwards. Apparently, 6 months is not quite enough time for the powers that be to "familiarize" themselves with said new law. Our insurance company tried to tell us that "there may be a possibility that David would not be picked up as he reached his life time maximum prior to the law changing. He, therefore, would be grandfathered in and the company would not be responsible for his health care policy...oh and could we just be patient while they explored this possibility?"

Anyhow, part of me is holding my breath until January 1st to see if they actually will send us our new family card and include baby David's name on it. We'll see...right now, I'm basking in the light of the idea that our little guy might be included on our policy after all!!!


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

My little prize fighter!

Poor David's gums look like they fought all night in a boxing match...and lost. He's got 5 molars (3 on top that have barely broken through and 2 on the bottom that, if they get any more swollen, I seriously think it will impede on his ability to keep his mouth closed!) He's had a nasty upset tummy for 3 days...which actually has worked out to our advantage because I don't have to worry about the occasional dose of Tylenol causing constipation. He's had a couple of low grade fevers...and my sweet boy wants to be held literally all.the.time.

He's been super extra crazy clingy with me lately. Brent tried to help out last night by watching them while I went for a very quick run and apparently, David cried the whole time. He cried for an hour at nap time the day before - and that was WHILE I was rocking him. He's been needy and clingy before, but surprisingly, it's possible for him to be even more so.

Despite all of that, he has been so exhausted from the days of grumpiness that he has really been able to sleep extra hard during the past few nights. Brent and I even got to sleep all the same bed last night!!!! (until 4am when he left for work and the babies stirred). This is practically unheard of these days!

In other news, Mary Louise and David have mastered yet another skill - SCOOTING on their scoot toys!!!! I'm so proud of my little guys. David goes around the entire house, backwards, while Mary Louise stays neck and neck with him going forward. David even pushed his sister for a bit and walked backward while pulling her to get her out of a corner today. Way to go guys!!! Balance, coordination, cooperation, AND problem solving?! Amazing!

We have also been frequenting local playgrounds and parks to allow Mary Louise and David to blow off some of their amazing and endless energy stores. They LOVE LOVE LOVE the slide and have begun to go down the smaller slides all by themselves! They giggle, they run, and we are so lucky to have so many options of parks within walking distance.

Here's hoping that there's an end (or at least a break) in the teething seems, right now, that things have gotten worse, so maybe we're on the cusp of an upswing? (said with fingers crossed!)


Saturday, November 27, 2010

Growin' like weeds!

I thought I'd give an update on the babies' progress in growth...

They are now 28 inches (Mary Louise) and 28 3/4 inches (David) in height. Mary Louise is just under 20 pounds and David is hanging out just under 19 - still true to their 1 pound weight difference they've maintained since they were born (well, since they started gaining weight after being born).

They have had their first Synagis shots of the season after much fuss over their health insurance coverage...still battling it out for little David - but that is a story for another post! The shots went relatively well but were much rougher than last year as the dose is calculated by weight. Accordingly, each baby now gets a shot in EACH leg - 2 shots total. Their sweet little legs were so sore to the touch for about 2 days. I'm very thankful for the added protection this season, but I can't say I won't be happy when their last shot is done in March (they were approved for a shortened season of shots due to their almost immaculate medical history so they are receiving them from November through March - every 28 days)...

A little bit of medical trivia - in case you were wondering why the shots had to be given in 2 legs rather than 1...there is only so much medication that can safely be given in 1 spot on a muscle - typically 1 mL. (This is why many medications must be given in an adult hip rather than the arm). So, in this case, the dose of Synagis is calculated, then split and given in the most developed muscle a baby has - the upper thigh...and end physiology 101 for the day.

Their teeth are still charging through full speed ahead. Poor David was up every 15 to 20 minutes after midnight last night chewing on his finger. His tooth count is up to 4 molars on the top and 2 on the bottom. Mary Louise was just very restless - but slept for the most part. She has a tooth coming in on the bottom front as well as 2 molars that have pushed through at the top. I've noticed other "questionable" areas in the mouths of both of I don't expect things to calm down in the teething department any time soon.

Last night was momentous as for the first time, both babies tried out their new SIZE 2 diapers!!! They've been in size 1 to 2 for a very long time now, but Mary Louise's tiny tush was beginning to grow...and produce more than the little ones could handle. David is finally able to pull off (not literally) a size 2 so we made the switch. As of this morning, things in the diaper sizing department are working just fine.

Mary Louise is wearing mostly 12 month clothing and dipping into the 12 to 18 month supply pretty often. David is well into 12 month clothing -though his teeny tiny waist line cannot quite fill the waist in most of his pants. He spends quite a bit of time in overalls, and I am thinking Dapper Snappers will make their way into our household in the near future for our slim little guy as he will likely outgrow the length of his trousers way before the width!

Shoes: David is at the end of his size 2 Sperry's and can only wear them without socks. He can finally walk quite well in his size 3 squeakers - with socks. Mary Louise's size 3's fit perfectly...I noticed this morning that size 4 is considered a "preschool" size by many clothing companies!!!! (But I'm sure I don't have to tell you that she'll always be my sweet baby girl no matter what size shoes she's filling!)

I think that just about does it for a head to toe physical update!


Thursday, November 25, 2010

Gettin' out the good stuff!

We celebrated our Thanksgiving day with Mommom, and Uncles Kyle and Sean.

We kicked things off with an early morning Turkey Trot! Kyle and I are scheduled to run a half marathon relay in January and a half marathon in February so we jumped at the opportunity to pace one another for a day! After completing about 5 miles, and walking around the lake with Mommom, Brent - who is still recovering from some SI joint inflammation - and of course our darlings, we headed back to the house to pop the turkey into the oven and finish up cooking.

We had a bit of a mess yesterday when our deep freezer defrosted. Luckily, we were able to make the best of things and minimize waste when Father Jack came to the rescue by connecting us to a family in need to whom we gave some of the defrosted (but still cold) items to. I then cooked what I could of the rest (we have enough food here for weeks now!)

Today, I set up the crystal, the china and the silver for a really nice dinner service. It's the first time we've done such in the new house - and I was so excited! I love Thanksgiving! Which brings me to... thankful list...I am so very thankful for so many things...not the least of which are:

My family - Brent, Mary Louise, David, sweet angel Kuylen, my brothers, Mom. Without whom I would surely be lost in this world. They are truly the light of my soul and loves of my life and I am so very incredibly indescribably lucky to have them.

I am thankful to carry with me such a heavy influence courtesy of my dad and grandmother. I miss them dearly, but I carry them, along with Kuylen in my heart. They all continue to teach me life's lessons regularly.

Our home, our health, our pets, our lives.

Breastfeeding - it is one of the most difficult, trying, irritating, awful, wonderful, sublime, calming, exhilarating, and rewarding experiences I've ever had - and continue to have daily. Really.

The continued excellent health of our babies. Everything you do, Mary Louise and David, is the most amazing thing. ever. I am constantly in awe of your strength, perseverance, and determination. We were faced with perilous odds of ever even bringing you home - and had to make peace early on with the possibility of life long medical complications and horrific procedures. We were told that you may never breathe on your own, may never walk, and that IF you survived, you would almost certainly not be "normal". Today, every breath you take is a miracle, every step you take is the most beautiful and graceful thing I've ever seen. Your smiles warm my heart, your kisses balm my soul. You are perfect - more perfect than I ever thought possible - even without such dire odds. You are, in fact, phenomenal and I feel such a huge sense of privilege to watch you, teach you and learn from you every. single. day.

Much love to our family and friends on such a gorgeous holiday...and many thanks for your warm spiritual embrace now and then.


Thursday, November 18, 2010

While you're waiting...

So, to keep Brent from missing the goings on at home while at work, I send him daily videos, and photos - mostly with my I-phone. I uploaded the media's from the past few months - just after we moved into our new / old house...enjoy!

Iphone photos 2010

I am working on a post - but it's turning out to be easier said than done with Mary Louise and David "typing" and "editing" all the way through!


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

shuttin' the NICU door with Poop Fiasco 2010

We had our very last visit with Kid's Team today. To be honest, I thought we were done...until I received a message on the phone yesterday about a 1pm appointment with them today! Yikes!

Brent was able to get home just in time and off we went to see our beloved neonatologist...and a number of specialty therapists of course.

Physical therapy took one look at Mary Louise and David when the WALKED into the back area of the office and discharged them without batting an eye. Occupational therapy played with them for a little while, went over some goals for the next few months and explained the few little tid bits they needed to achieve to be "caught up" completely by the age of 2 years. She felt good about discharging them as well.

Then came the speech therapist...she is very nice don't get me wrong - but if there is one area of concern with Mary Louise and David, it's the fact that they do not yet *really* verbalize words YET. They make TONS of noise, repeat repeat repeat, have started to mimic certain sounds, they both say "bad Chester" consistently (poor Chester) and the occasional phrase "I got that!" here and there...but they don't have really clear words...they definitely understand what we are saying. They follow commands very consistently. Anyhow, expressive speech has been their "most behind" area for quite sometime now so I was anxious for an opinion on their progress.

They did BEAUTIFULLY!!!! They were evaluated to be "speaking" at a 19 to 20 month level. Their actual age skills are considered to be "emerging" and the therapist felt that I could simply continue to work hard with them at home and "they will be just fine"!! Yeah!!

A few things the therapist suggested did surprise me a little though...I have a pet peeve about baby talk. We speak to Mary Louise and David with "normal" adult, everyday vocabulary. The only thing we've even tried to change or simplify is bottle to "baba" and they sure haven't said that yet - even though I must say it oooohh an obnoxious 100 times per day. Ok, they've said it once or twice - but I certainly don't think it was because the word was simple. Our pediatrician agrees with our approach. I do use over exaggerated tones to keep their attention, but I feel that using proper grammar and pronunciation, teaches...proper grammar and pronunciation. The therapist suggested: 1. using more "baby talk" and simplifying requests and statements to 1 word only; 2. sending the babies to a day care or mother's day out program for more interaction with peers. Be still my heart. We agonize over simple everyday outings and have sacrificed for me to stay home with them for as long as possible. Surely it's needless to say that I nixed the day care setting immediately. About the baby talking, probably not - though I will pay more attention to the things I'm telling them and simplify the wording as much as I can.

Last, but certainly not least, we saw our dear Dr. B (the neo). He was very pleasantly surprised with their progress and kept saying how good the babies look. He took a quick listen to their breathing, watched them play for a time, and gave us his wonderful blessings as he agreed to discharge us as well!! (His exact words were, "you've done a GREAT job. your babies are fine! We just need to get you (meaning me) to loosen up a bit!") Nice right?

After just over 2 hours of evaluation, Mary Louise and David were more than ready to get strapped into their car seats for the ride home. Of course they fell asleep on the way...OF COURSE THEY DID!!! since they haven't slept in ohhhhhh about a week and a half. Why not? It was only 1 hour before dinner, bath and bed time! So I woke them as I took them out of the car...of course they were both in FOUL moods. In addition to the obvious irritation of being disturbed while exhausted, they are still teething and consequently still going back and forth with stomach upset and constipation (right now, David is with constipation and Mary Louise is happily coasting through some mild stomach upset - which, considering her usual bowel habits, would mean she is pooping regularly without complaint - it's just a little on the unformed side.

**A sidenote, the doctor asked if I was still blogging or if I'd shut this thing down. I told him that I was keeping it going. He asked how long...I told him that I'd continue until the babies asked me to stop because I was embarrassing them (in truth, that may be the time I make it a private blog instead!). So, do you think the comments above would hurt my case with the teen Mary Louise and David? ha!**

Back to the story...

After failing miserably at a high chair feeding, I opted instead for a change of scene and put the kiddos in a warm bubble bath - and went back to feeding like we did "in the old days". It worked quite well actually. They finished almost all of what I brought upstairs! Then Mary Louise made (dun dun dunnnnn) the poop face...I took her out of the tub, put her on the toilet...she looked at me and laughed. I helped her to sit there for another minute or so, but nothing. I put her back in the tub, she made the face, I put her on the toilet, nothing. This happened 3 times before I put her back in the tub one last time to soap her up. She made the face and immediately followed it with a,"pffffooot!" I was a little stunned, as was she - but I checked and it was all air...

Then it happened...

With no other face or sound, a brown torpedo literally shot out of her rear and went "plop" in the water. Now really stunned and fumbling to get both babies out asap, I was too late. She was still going. I grabbed her and put her on the toilet. I scooped one of our, umm, unwanted tub guests out of the water and transferred it to the toilet. David came to the front of the tub (he had been playing quietly at the back) to see what the commotion was about.

It was as if we were playing out one of those dramatic movie scenes in which everything goes in slow motion for the pivotal snafu. I tried to grab David but lost a bit of my grip on the slippery Mary Louise. She fell in the toilet - rear first so she couldn't move at all - and began to SCREAM hysterically (I can't say that I blame her). I very quickly wrapped David in a towel and turned my attention to Mary Louise.

I took her out of the toilet - to find that she'd been, umm, smeared with "the funk". Oh. my. gosh. I cleaned her up, ran a fresh tub of water, broke out the Clorox wipes and went to town on the poor poor bathroom.

David's wheels must have started to spin sometime between poop plop and smear because just as I finished cleaning up mess #1, he decided to add a little fun of his own. Though not as exciting as his sister, by the end of it all, I'd had quite enough of the poopscapades to last for quite some time.

Oh, then Brent came home from the store to, "see how we were doing." Stinker. Pun intended.

To date: David is simultaneously cutting 4 top molars and Mary Louise is cutting 2 at the top and has 2 very questionable spots at the bottom...I don't normally ask this, but if you think about it, could you please send us a little peaceful, healing prayer for our family this week? (ha)


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

This is how we...

This is how we climb the stairs...well, Chester got in the way a bit - but David always has issues with the second flight...

This is how we swing at the park...for now anyhow!

And THIS is how we Dance Dance Dance...this was this morning - Mary Louise is a morning person...David, not so much (note his amazing bed head!)


Sunday, November 14, 2010

No Sweat!

Well, the week has been, umm, interesting? and today has been no different...

Yesterday, the babies attended a birthday party for their friend Allie. She turned 2 and they had a celebration at a local park. Brent and I hemmed and hawed about going - because we didn't know how big the party would be, and of course we didn't want to put the babies at high(er) risk for catching a bug with the weather in mid-change once again. But, we thought we'd pass by, if things were going well, we'd stay - you things by ear.

I am so very glad we went!! Brent and I just love Allie's parents and have become good friends with them at church. Our crazy kiddos compete each Sunday from the back 2 pews to see who can attain the high notes in each song, who can get out of the pew between Mommy and Daddy's legs first and make a mad dash up to the front, and of course, who can burp, and toot loudest, or make the stinkiest of the stinky diapers. So, church is fun...more about that in a minute.

We popped in to find that it was a fantastic, simple, comfy party - mostly older children who could care less about our babies - and the grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles of the sweet princess birthday girl. The babies had a blast! The weather wasn't very nice out so we were in a very large gameroom - empty - so perfect for Mary Louise and David who quite literally ran around in circles the entire time. David and Allie played a game I like to call "rearranging the furniture" in which they pushed the folding chairs around the room together. David is just fascinated with Allie and always seems quite happy and content to play next to her...maybe that would be because she tends NOT to steal anything and everything he tries to play with, uhem, MARY LOUISE. I must give Mary Louise and David pats on the back though - they refused birthday cake and ice cream and instead went straight for the fresh grapes and strawberries in the fruit salad! Way to choose little ones!

We went home after the party for dinner and bath time - and to play with the wonderful party favors - BUBBLES!!! Off to bed after that - Mary Louise and David slept well...until 5am when the real excitement happened...

They were awake - and not just any awake - they were awake "for good" awake. Nonetheless, Brent and I tried - oh how we tried - to ignore the "for good" factor and just rest our eyes for a bit. But to no avail.

Mary Louise and David played until about 8am and I finally got them to nap for a little while. Brent left for church as he is in a breakfast cooking group and it was their Sunday to cook prior to the main service. When the babies woke, they were WILD.

I got them to play for a bit while I got myself ready and put out their clothing. David got angry and in a fit, threw himself into the crux of the closet door where it is hinged and gashed his forehead. I cleaned him up - actually, he was more angry than hurt as it was a spot he had bumped earlier in the week on the brick patio - so he essentially re-opened the almost healed scab.

I put band aids on the area, he pulled them off...but it kept him busy. I somehow managed to get us dressed, out of the door, and into the church just after the service started (perfect timing with babies - cut 5 minutes off at the beginning and a few off at the end and there is a slight possibility you'll all make it through the service without getting more than a mild stink eye from the unfortunate soul sitting next to you!)

Once in our seats, Mary Louise and David did quite well actually. They ate snacks, they actually stayed in our laps most of the time, and they didn't try to make a run for it down mid isle...UNTIL...David decided things were just going too smoothly and suddenly opened his mouth to let out the.most.frustrated.yell I have quite literally ever heard from him. Without warning! As the whole congregation, no doubt just as surprised as I was about the commotion, turned to stare while I walked through the back doors, David got really restless...there were only a few minutes until communion so we piddled around outside until I saw people lining up through the window.

Usually, just walking up to the front in enough to keep the babies occupied for the minute or so it takes to receive communion...of course this time was different. With the babies' increase in mobility, their fascination with stairs has become an obsession. David spotted the 3 steps up to the alter a mile away, started to wiggle and began to whine. I let him down to hold my hand and scale the steps. He did so with gusto - grinning all the way. The line stopped at the top, but David wasn't ready to stop. He tried to pull away so I quickly scooped him up. Wrong move Mom...David started to flop like a 20 pound fish out of water. He kicked and bucked his head so furiously that he head butted the girl in front of us in line. We were on the alter, people in front of us, people behind way to discretely exit stage left...Fr. Jack looked up, grinned at me trying to wrestle my bucking bronco into submission while he yelled, and said, "hang in there Heather, it's almost over."

We made it through the last few minutes of the service...but not before Mary Louise ran up a side isle as the procession headed to the back. It was a circus - and we were the main attraction. All I could do was smile and exhausted smile, and feel some sense of accomplishment for just making it through.

I've heard so many times from other moms the stories of trying to calm or hush a wild child in the middle of a crowded but quiet a church...always the same. It is always a description of inner panic, profuse sweating, flushed cheeks, utter humiliation, "please baby calm down before Momma actually pukes from the nervousness"...ugh! there's no way to turn that feeling off when it happens, but it does help to know that others understand, they've been there...and they not only empathize with you - but typically find the situation hysterically nostalgic.


Friday, November 12, 2010

A picture worth...

I don't know what this picture is worth. It's amazing. It's terrible. It's fantastic. It's bizarre. It's of my dad's the garden just feet away from the now charred to the ground church...

From Drop Box

I have no idea about the scarecrow...but I thought the photo worth posting...


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Sweet! Molars!

Mary Louise and David have been quite a handful lately...and not in an especially good way. This week has been particularly rough. They are either constipated or a little on the tummy upset side of things - nothing in the middle no matter what I do. They have been WILDLY clingy. They fuss - even when I'm doing my best to hold and console and re-direct and whatever else I can think of to do.

But the really weird that they have been EATING. I mean eating like crazy! But not really for anyone but me. (ok - so only Abbey and Brent have tried - but they simply turn up their noses and will not have any part of the meal). They don't want just anything either - they have gone back to baby food. They have gone back to eating like mad in the bathtub, during their playtime. They have gone back to the somewhat mindless eating of their first cereal and "try one veggie at a time for 3 days before choosing a second veggie" days. I definitely wouldn't mind the eating...if it weren't for...

THE RETURN OF HORRID REFLUX!!!! Oh my gosh. Projectile, full force, not so baby vomit all over them and me 3 or 4 times this week. Today, I gave a second dose of Zantac - they were so miserable!

Why? Why is this happening?

The evil teething monster has holed up in our guest room and refuses to leave. They both have 2 molars (each) charging through. I'm sure there are more on the way - those that are poking through are on the top, but there are a few balding and questionable spots on the bottom.

When they first started to cut teeth, they cut all 6 that each of them have over about a 1 month time period so I am mentally preparing for a similar trek.

Sweet babies, I wish I could make the discomfort go away...but in the meantime, I'm aiming to find a way to take caloric advantage of these lovely appetites! (hopefully, with a little extra Zantac on the side, they can keep a few of their eating tirades in check!)


No going back...

I found out first thing this morning that my beloved St. Matthew's Episcopal Church burned to the ground in an absolutely devastating fire last night. The church was built in the late 1800's and known throughout my home town for it's beautifully constructed cypress gothic style architecture, and gorgeous stained glass windows. I just can't believe it's quite literally all gone.

I went to school there from age 4 to age 13. I went to church most Sundays with my grandmother (for whom Mary Louise is named). Brent and I were married there. It was a place of peace for me, for my family, for so many. It was more than a building...and more than a place of worship. It was absolutely, and without question, part of our family. This place had a soul that could be felt no matter what religion or creed one practiced.

I know that any church is made up of its people. But this place, was. sacred. The people were (and are) amazing. But this was a place that I could go - without anyone there - and sit for hours. Just sit in awe of its serene beauty.

Brent and I had our wedding ceremony inside the church itself and I am both proud and sad to say that we were the only couple ever to have our reception just outside with a tent dropped under the historically protected oak trees. It was beautiful, it was comfortable, it was what a wedding reception should be - a fabulous celebration - and a great party!

There was a kid in my family attending school there for 21 years. Everyday there was one of us there, my grandmother was there - volunteering in the library. She took us to school everyday. She doctored all of our scraped knees courtesy of the rough and tumble playground. If we were sick, we need not look farther than a few hundred feet away - she was there. It made St. Matthew's our "other" home. I would happily follow her into the church after school hours to "pick up the linens" which she would take home and wash in her special concoctions made specifically to get all of the church ladies' lipstick stains out.

In recent years, St. Matthew's church served as host for the only baby shower I had - with triplets in tow. They prayed more prayers for this family and those babies than I can even wrap my mind around. My dad's and grandmother's funerals have both been there.

I was lucky enough to finally bring Mary Louise and David to church there over the summer. The church had completed the meditation and memorial garden just outside under the trees and I put David on my dad's bench and took photos.

It is truly one of the first places I think of when something wonderful, or something tragic happens, when I need a little peace, support, understanding, guidance...

I will miss my dear family member and quiet friend. I hold my precious memories close and tight and am nothing short of devastated to know that there won't be any more...

Prayers and peace to the family and friends of St. Matthew's Episcopal church and school tonight...and for many nights to come.


Saturday, November 6, 2010

Precious Moments


David was taking a nap upstairs and I was downstairs with Mary Louise. She looked at the baby monitor, pointed and said, "Dae Dae? DAE". I told her, "that's right baby. David is sleeping. Do you want to give David kisses?" She grabbed the monitor, pressed the screen against her forehead, and looked up at me and grinned.

Mary Louise has taken up cleaning as of late. She grabs any type of cloth available and scoots around wiping anything within reach - sometimes spots on the floor, sometimes the seat of a chair or the baby gates...but today topped all when she walked up to me with a baby wipe and proceeded to wipe MY face with it. My little momma...

This evening, it took me 2 hours to put David to bed. Oh that's right. 2. hours. He was lying down, I thought he might be sleeping, he started to scratch the pillow next to him because his nails on the fabric make noise. He grinned, opened his eyes, looked at me and laughed. Out loud.

Mary Louise and David have both started to dance. On command.

David has hung from all of the top drawers in the kitchen this week - and by hung I mean dangle, swing, full monkey style least we know the drawers are sturdy. His new favorite activity is to stand on the bottom rung of the baby gate and pull back and forth on the bars as if we have him locked in a cage - all while yelling - but not usually an angry yell, more of a "look at what I can do!" yell.

Mary Louise woke a little while ago and wanted one of us to keep her company while she was attempting to go back to sleep. Brent had to switch out with me because her hair was just the most hysterical thing I've seen all day. It was sticking up in "Something about Mary" fashion and would not lay down no matter how many times I tried to smooth it.

Every time Brent tells Mary Louise, "no" or tries to redirect her when she's exhibiting undesirable behavior, she gives him a hug. I'm not kidding. That baby girl has her daddy under her thumb and she's not even 2 yet!


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Mini Vaca...

That's what we called last weekend. I signed up a while back for the Little Voo Du in Baton Rouge and we decided to make a weekend out of the trip.

We drove out on Friday - it was an awful drive taking 4 hours rather than the expected 2 - but once we finally made it to our hotel, things settled down quite a bit. Brent found a great room for us! It was more like a full condo than a hotel room really with plenty of room for us to mill around and store my bike out of the way.

After a good night's sleep (I know...hard to believe but we divide and conquer in 2 queen beds when we stay in hotels these days so the babies sleep sound and snug), we got ourselves together and went to the zoo. Brent's childhood friend Jay met us there with his 2 boys and Mommom ended up joining us a bit later! We had such good day there. The weather was beautiful and after walking through the main parts of the zoo, the kiddos got a little restless in their strollers. So we decided to sort of park in a green space and let them run around a bit. They had a wonderful time!

We had a really busy afternoon / evening with a few errands and picking up my race packet for the next day.

Sunday, we muddled through getting ready (always a difficult feat at 6am) and made our way to the race. Kyle and I participated together again in another short duathalon (run 2 miles, bike 10 miles, run 2 miles). This time, the route was along the levee in Baton Rouge.

We both cut a number of minutes off of our previous times and both did very well in our age groups with Kyle getting first in his and me getting fourth in mine!

During the race, Mary Louise, with Mommom's encouragement, actually pet a horse on the nose! There were stables along the park property where the race began and a young girl happened to be riding along the fence where the family was waiting for Kyle and I to pass. It apparently didn't take long to coax Mary Louise into touching the sweet stead on the muzzle. I'm so proud of her for breaking out of her little shell a bit!

So, all really went well - and I'm back to training! Half marathon coming up in February!!


Sunday, October 31, 2010

Wild (last) Wednesday!!! WOAH!

Right, so I lost track of time...again...

Last Wednesday was a HUGE and VERY BUSY day for us!! Brent and I had arterial ultrasounds done in the morning. They were done on his work property as a wellness promotion for employees and families at a very low cost. We thought, "what the heck, we'll give it a go" and signed up. We "passed" with flying colors and were just thrilled with the news that we are living sans signs of heart disease so far!!

Since we were out his way, Brent showed us his other home - the golf course - which of course looked beautiful to me! I haven't been out there in over 2 years as it's a little under an hour from our house to get there (yes, Brent commutes, daily). It was the babies' first time EVER!

After our tests, Brent took us around the course for a bit. Mary Louise sat in his lap to help "drive" and David snuggled into mine - he was so tired from waking up very early. Brent went slowly, but with the wind through her fine little hairs, Mary Louise said "woooooooah" every time he really got going - so so funny and cute! They ran around the club house and we left before they could unfold the entire table of golf shirts and dismantle the kitchen!

It was a really good visit which was followed up by a tiny bit of playtime at home and an afternoon wellness checkup at the pediatrician's office. The babies are 19th months old now (oh. my. gosh.) and we have maintained their checkup schedule at about a month off as that is how it was started in the NICU way back when.

The checkup went really well. Mary Louise is ALMOST on the bottom line of the growth chart for height and weight!! She is 18 pounds and 29 inches tall. (I think - may have to correct this later). Her sweet noggin is in the 25th percentile for circumference (sorry Mary Louise, your, uhem, sizable think tank would be a gift from dear old mom.)

David is a little bit bellow his growth chart - apparently a different standard is used for boys and girls. He is 17 pounds and 29 3/4 inches - taller than his "big" sis!

Though they both continue on below the curve, they are still following their own line very well and show appropriate growth and gain over time. Therefore, there is no reason for concern - they are simply petite for the time being.

The doctor was very pleased with their development over the past 3 months and agreed to wait 6 MONTHS before seeing us back!!!!! He was thrilled with their walking (which is nothing short of running now). As far as talking, he saw no need for concern at this time - but expects for them to take off with their words during the next 6 months. I will of course continue to watch for progress.

Just this weekend, Mary Louise and David began playing peek a boo without any props (using their hand rather than a blanket, etc. to cover their faces). When they withdraw their hand, Mary Louise says, "there she is!!" with a HUGE grin - well, I know that's what she's trying to say anyhow. She gets the "there" out and gets a little stuck on the "s" sound of she. Anyhow, this is a step in the right direction. Both she and David have begun to actually bring me books to read to them. David is interested for the first page or so, then wanders off to play - but stays pretty quiet and seems to listen. Mary Louise, many times, will sit in my lap and follow along for at least half of the book.

We are starting to teach some basic signs as well - but that seems to be a pretty slow process too. We'll see...I feel like they are making slow progress with expressive speech - but are finally moving in the right direction with it - so I'll take that for now and continue to work hard with them.

They are both wildly curious about how things work, and how things are put together. It is so very difficult for me to even type a posting as I am constantly having to delete their typing from mine (they can reach the edge of the keyboard. They unplug the lap top regularly (the battery cord from the actual lap top - not the outlet). I check electrical outlets in our play areas daily as if there is one uncovered from vacuuming or something else, they will find it immediately.

In short, they are busy. They never. stop. moving. (I hear this from ANYONE) who comes to visit. I like to think they are just processing the world around them. I'll never match their endless supply of intense energy - but I can embrace it and make their environment as conducive to their personalities as possible!

So, we are doing really well and have just had a really wonderful weekend!! More about that later!


Monday, October 25, 2010

It's Potty Time!

...and yet another "I never will" declaration bites the dust...I'll explain. Prior to having teeny tiny babies, I declared, over and over, that I would NOT NOT NOT have those cute little potties that sit next to big, well, not so cute potties just beckoning little guys to pop a squat and do their (uhem) deeds. Why? I've changed enough bed pans and bed side commodes to last 10 lifetimes - and plan on getting back to that kind of dumping eventually, I certainly didn't want to add numbers to that list by emptying kiddie potties!

Alas, when one has 27 inch toddlers, one must adapt. Mary Louise and David aren't quite ready to scale 2 steps, sit on a booster seat, and patiently use the "grown up" toilet. So, I conceded to introduce the froggie potties we picked up at Target the other day.

We looked at all available, the ones that congratulated the kiddo once business was done, the ones that played music, the ones with prince and princess crowns attached to them, the ones with toilet paper holders sticking out the side (ok really?! as if there's a baby on earth that hasn't at some point unraveled any and every roll of toilet paper remotely in reach in the epitome of glee until their parents walked in, gasped, and found a new place for the roll)...finally we decided that basic was better and got ones that just sit and look cute - rather than those that try to make friends with you before enthusiastically congratulating you for taking a crap in them - pardon the language.

What prompted the purchase? Mary Louise has had a dry diaper for the past 4 nights. Also, I have routinely balanced the babies on the big toilet each morning now for awhile as they are relatively predictable that time of day - and it saves me some mess to cut out that diaper change. So, I thought I could start to introduce the idea in hopes of working toward and occasional use. Don't worry, I'm not so unrealistic that I'd expect them to potty train prior to even talking!

The introduction has gone pretty well. Mary Louise sits on the potties like it's some sort of game. David is a little afraid of them - but will sit a second or 2 if I hold his hand through the ordeal. They are set up in the play room so as to look like a toy - and so they are nearby at all times.

I'm pretty excited to move forward with it all (famous last words right?) and see how and if the babies catch on to the idea.

I'll let you know how it goes...


Saturday, October 23, 2010

Our little Mountain Climbers...

Brent and I sleep in a queen size sleigh bed with a heavy Tempeurpedic style pillow top mattress.

Guess where this story is going...

I was upstairs with the babies. I have once again resumed my mission to get David reinstated on Brent's employer paid insurance policy...OF COURSE this is MUCH easier said than done - but that is another story...

Brent got home from work as I was researching some of the new federal health care laws on the lap top. He plopped down on the bed. The babies were playing on the floor in our room and running back and forth to the playroom which is directly across the hall. Brent pulled each of them up on the bed for a few minutes to give them hugs and tell them hello. When they started squirming too much (they seriously never stop moving), he gently lowered each back down to the floor. I crawled in bed too - put my head on his chest, and we chatted for a bit, exhausted from another wild week.

I felt something at my feet...looked down. David sat there smiling a coy little smile and sitting almost Indian style at the foot of the bed. It was almost as if he'd been there all along...until it occurred to me, I didn't put him there...and I was lying on Brent so I KNEW HE didn't put him there...our bed is 3 FEET off the ground!!!! David is just under 28 inches tall!!!! Oh. My. GOSH.!!!

I've said for awhile now that these babies can climb. But in truth, I really didn't realize they would be capable of THIS! We put him back down on the floor to see if he would do it again...

He got angry at first - all of his hard work just wiped away in one swoop. Once he calmed down a bit though, he just grabbed onto the fitted sheet just above the elastic (those tiny hands dug the sheet out from between the mattress and box spring - ha!) and pulled himself all the way up!! He looked like he was climbing a rock wall!...and was SO proud of himself when he was done.

Amazing...and yes, our hands are INDEED full as, in addition, Mary Louise's latest trick is to climb on her scoot toys, stand on the seats, and "dance" while balancing. They have also, just this week, both climbed onto the seats of our dining room chairs using the bottom rungs to give them a leg up. They scale the stairs with glee every evening - all by themselves. Well, they scale ANY stairs with glee - all by themselves...they spot those things a mile away and make bee lines toward them!

I have officially signed up for another duathlon (another short one) and my very first half's a good thing I'm getting into this running business...I'll definitely need the added stamina to chase after these two!!


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Family photos

Our last photo session is available to view...

1. Go to:

2. Click "Client Login"

3. Click on Mary Louise and David's photo - it is titled "Mary Louise and David"

4. The password is "LeBlanc"


We are all on the mend after quite the bout of colds! Mary Louise has a little dry cough and I have some pretty rough pesky remnants, but we're getting better every day!


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Dear Dad...

3 years?! It's really hard to believe. So so much has changed...

I had tests run to see how my body has recovered from having triplets. That's right Dad. I HAD TRIPLETS!!!! I know. Wild. I was such a wreck both physically and mentally after the dust settled, so to speak, that I am just now following up on my own medical needs.

As it turns out, I'm doing just fine. My cholesterol looks amazing, my kidneys have recovered beautifully, my liver is normal as ever, I'm not even anemic anymore!! Even more amazing is that without stretch marks, the only evidence I wear of having triplets is the scar from the section and the daily reminder I get in the form of a very low dose of blood pressure medication.

I know you've likely met our darling Kuylen - and know you must be keeping one another company. I have to giggle about you and Mommon getting snarky with one another...Tootle is still kickin' - I'm sure much to your chagrin and is enjoying the yard and the beautiful weather at our old / new house as much as we are here in downtown.

I miss you Dad. I know in some ways you'll always be with me, but I can't help but continue to wait for a phone call that will never come. One telling me of your recent flight from Singapore or your trip to England which included a short but wonderful visit with family there. I miss calling you at work for no reason at all - and having you answer and get excited about the nothings I have to say. I miss your cooking - but more than that I miss your proud look of pleasant surprise when we gobbled up your entire meal. I miss your pat on the back when I did something great, the smile when I would just show up for a visit. I miss the perplexed look you'd get when I did something you didn't understand (probably the look I got most often)...

We're all still trying to make you proud Dad, and I have to believe you would be. We are all doing our best to do good things with everything you taught and gave to us.

You always said, no matter the circumstance, "it will be alright". It is, Dad, even though we all miss you more than we could ever express, think of you more times in a day than we could count, it's ok, because you told us it would be.

Love you,

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

So it has happened...

*Rachael, I got your email - thanks so much and I'll respond shortly!!*

I'm sick. I feel horrible! Brent had "it" last week - stuffy nose, aches, cough. It lasted a few days and he got better with lots of rest. Then Mary Louise...I was in a panic! She got a clear runny nose, dry cough, fever- mostly very low grade, 2 episodes of nausea. David started a bit on Sunday evening. He has a cough, a little runny nose...his has been milder than the rest of us so far.

I'm so very worried that the congestion will reach their little lungs! UGH! The pediatric stethoscope has been used more in the past few days than I used it in school! They sound good so far and I'm giving them all of the fresh breast milk I can muster which definitely gave a noticeable boost yesterday! (YAY)

So, just barely shy of their 19 MONTH BIRTHDAY!!!!!!, they have gotten their first cold. I could have gone a lifetime without this, but all things considered, I think we've done pretty well - and they are fairing the respiratory blow MUCH better than either or Brent or I so that (to me) says quite a bit about their immune systems!


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Out with the Old, In with the NEW!!

We officially signed the closing papers for the sale of our (old) house yesterday!!! We've had more glitches, and continuances of contract that I care to recall - but it is officially NOT ours anymore!!! That's big news for us as we've been waiting for that sale to be official to do some big projects around here!

We're excited - and I think that deserves it's own post.


Monday, October 11, 2010

Wild and Crazy Weekend!

*I put a few pics in the past few posts if you have time to take a look back...*

Let's see, what a weekend we had! So very busy - packed FULL of family time (YAY!) and baby snuggles (woo hoo!) and a few "very firsts" for my sweet and oh so active Mary Louise and David.

We decided to take a trip to the zoo!! Now, the zoo is one of my favorite places. I've always loved it. Brent has taken me to more zoos in more cities than I can recall off the top of my head. We've been "that couple" more times than I can count- the ones without kids - the ones that stick out like a sore thumb amidst the school buses, mom jeans, and dirty yet rosey cheeks and grins. To say that I was excited to FINALLY bring Mary Louise and David to the zoo is SUCH an understatement. We really had a great time...

On our way home, we stopped by the very end of a very close friend's birthday party. It was perfect timing really - the last 20 minutes of the party so the children there were much more interested in Zoe's gifts and the fun jump than the babies. We stayed inside and chatted while the kids played outside...though we did catch the last few minutes of the mini ponies and brought Mary Louise and David over for a quick peek. Mary Louise, true to her sweet personality, was pretty apprehensive the about whole thing while David actually sat proudly on the tiny saddle and grabbed the horn! The owners were very sweet - a family whose daughter and son in law has just found that they were expecting twin girls.

The party favors were build a bear type gifts and of course they saved some for Mary Louise and David...

On Sunday, we went to church - Brent is the head of a small cooking group and it was their Sunday to cook breakfast. It went well, the babies did reasonably well for the service - unlike last Sunday when halfway through, we finally called it quits and left because they were just so very rambunctious! We went home, and enjoyed a quick visit from our dear friend Shane who was passing through on his way back to Texas, and enjoyed our afternoon together.

The week has been EVEN BUSIER than the weekend! The babies are so incredibly active now that I have trouble using my pumping time as blogging time as they are in constant motion and need of something. (Hence the fact that this blog entry actually began on Sunday!) Couple that with my running mind current lack of focus and it doesn't exactly make for easy writing.

Anyhow, it's done now...and I got the upstairs bathroom functioning and organized yesterday during Abbey play day!


Sunday, October 10, 2010

David Walking

So he's been doing this for awhile - a few weeks or so - and the video is a bit topsy turvy - but I thought it was high time for a David walking vid just the same!


Thursday, October 7, 2010

GREAT Morning!

The babies look so so amazingly cute this morning! They each have their very first "toddler" jammies on - Mary Louise has a pink nighty with flutter sleeves and tulips and David has trucks all over his pants and shirt set. Ugh! I feel like they are just growing up so fast - even though we've had quite a bit of borrowed time to be with them... I'm glad I've written many things down because my goodness, life's been a blur over the past 18 months!

It's gotten quite a bit cooler here so we fill our afternoons with playtime on the patio. The babies have been "helping" me do some gardening and potting and have absolutely LOVED playing in their tents on the grass. (we have 2 little pop up tents set up outside).

BOTH of the babies took naps today!!! The quiet time lasted about 45 minutes - amazing and unheard of in this house! I got a chance to rest for a few minutes and have a really good pumping session - uninterrupted by pulled out tubing or fighting over a toy.

After they woke, we started getting ready for Mary Louise and David's hearing tests this afternoon. I got to organize all of their clothes and playroom yesterday while Abbey played with them so getting ready took about 30 minutes less than usual and was MUCH less frantic (plus and plus.).

They did SO WELL at their hearing checkups! Each passed their tests with flying colors and the doctor was so surprised that they'd never had an ear infection and didn't have tubes. They did so well that he cleared them for an entire year!! The doctor also double checked for fluid in their middle ears and didn't note any via testing or visual check so that was wonderful as well.

So at the ripe old age of 18 months, both Mary Louise and David are doing so well that they are on a minimum of 1 year rotations with all of their specialists! We are just ecstatic!

Another first for them today as Brent and I took them to one of the parks down the road from our house. It was their first time to really get out of the stroller and play on the park equipment. Though they were a bit tired, it went really well and they both seemed to enjoy the slides, swings and just running around in general. There were of course other children there, but they were very respectful of our space and Mary Louise and David just loved watching the "big kids" play. Park trips will definitely be on our agenda more frequently long as Brent or another set of adult hands is around to help me coral the little monkeys!

I must say, I'm going to bed smiling this evening - and it really feels good. Healthy babies = one happy momma.


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Makin' Banana Pancakes

So, the babies and I made banana pancakes this morning! I remember doing this with my mom when I was little...I always got to sift. I LOVED sifting!

Mary Louise got a little bowl and a wisk and pretended to stir the batter - while David just beat on things with his wisk (he made breakfast music for us while we cooked). I used whole wheat flour, a little bit of vanilla, a pinch of cinnamon, some turbinado, and fresh mashed bananas - no syrup needed for these guys!

They each had a few bites of the warm yummies - I'm just excited that they BOTH (uhem - Mary Louise the picky) tried them! At any rate, we had fun making them.

My gracious thanks to Mom for giving me such wonderful kitchen memories and telling me over and over and over how easy it is to make things a little healthier rather than relying on the quicker, the saltier, the overly processed, the boxed - and for allowing us (with a smile no less) to repeatedly destroy her kitchen!


ooo-oooh that smell! take 2?!

So it happened AGAIN this morning!! Ha - it would seem that their little hineys are still size 1-2 but their stinker messes are size 3 to 4?

I am also very proud to announce that they are in 12 month clothing!!! I have been trying pieces here and there and they have fit reasonably well, but during the last week, they seem to have made the real jump to MOSTLY 12 month clothing! I put them in 12 month "footie" PJ's from Children's Place this morning and they fit perfectly! I bought their winter things for THIS year when the Children's Place did their clearance LAST year at the end of the season. I remember getting the items in thinking I might have made a mistake...the babies were about 7 pounds at the time, it was really hard for me to imagine them fitting in these ENORMOUS clothes. In truth, the pants are the right length for both of them, but David's are a bit big in the waist...but most are wearable with a onesie underneath. It's just wild to think of how far they've come, how much they've grown...

Yesterday I did a little gardening and Mary Louise was right behind me with her spade trying to digs holes for the plants "just like Mommy"! David walked down the drive to Tootle because he wanted to pet her on the nose. They are so independent, and we couldn't be prouder.

I still remember the promise I made to David before his intestinal surgery - if he would poop on his own, and breathe on his own, I would smile and be so proud forever...boy, he sure took the former to heart!

We are just so very lucky...


Monday, October 4, 2010

ooo-oooh that smell!

I typically crawl (literally) into bed with the babies while Brent gets ready for work (ha - if I'm not in bed with them already to attempt to keep them from late night partying!). I close the door to their little room so that if they both wake very early, they can play safely and I can rest just a little while before starting our day. I try to consistently start at around 7am regardless of their personal agendas (lately, they have been up at 6 - boo).

Oh my, this morning...

The smell hit me first, then a few slaps on my forehead, giggling...I can usually sleep through the climbing, fussing, playing (I can actually sleep through a train plowing through), but smells, now that wakes me every time...and this one, HOLY MOLY!
So I opened my eyes...very slowly...taking in a full frontal view of David's diapered crotch just inches from my nose...boy was that diaper working hard. I jumped up, grabbing him on my way and headed straight for the bathroom. As I was rushing - Mary Louise tugging at my legs and wondering what in the world I was so worked up about - I took in the -uhem- entire situation...poop up his back, oozing out of the front, sides, and really anywhere possible. I can't blame Pampers, I'm pretty sure this toxic waste would have eaten away a Super Glue seal.

I sort of carefully took the diaper off. Mary Louise was all too interested (ugh - for some reason, both love to grab at diapers post changing - let me know if you have a theory on that one...). So I ran down the hall to make the Diaper Genie deposit. DIAPER GENIE FULL! Are you kidding me?! It wasn't just full, the bag was stuffed down in there - I mean unusable full. I was dangling David - dirty rear out - making a mental note to check the stinker pit more frequently (it's upstairs - we use it mostly in the evenings during baths, etc - and Brent usually does the baths, etc. if you get my drift...point being, it's not front and center like it was at the old house and I admittedly don't have a good system here yet so it just got missed)- Mary Louise still hot on my heals. I grabbed the toilet paper as I didn't have wipes handy (and could have used a whole box on this debacle), cleaned David enough to put him in the tub and turned to Mary Louise. She had, in the time I was cleaning David, unrolled the rest of the toilet paper, lifted the lid to the toilet (another mental note: install those darn toilet locks), gone fishin' for a minute or 2 and was standing on one foot with the other hiked up on the bathtub edge whining that she wanted to get in too. What could I do, but laugh hysterically? I put her in the tub to play as well and did my best to clean up, and get a few bits of warm clothing together as the temperature dropped about 20 degrees during the night and we were all a bit chilly...

The result? Garbage, poopy clothes by the banister, babies in onesies, sweat shirts, and Baby Legs (equivalent of leg warmers)- I couldn't find any pants! (yet another mental note: organize the next size of clothing (12 month size!!!!!) for babies when Ms. Abbey comes on Wednesday).

I then hauled babies and the rest of it downstairs and got a little breakfast together...what a morning!


Thursday, September 30, 2010

lessons learned...

I'm still learning -WAY more than I ever thought possible with these 2!! What a day...

I had an appointment with an internist this morning. I will be the first to admit that I am (ashamedly) NOT the golden patient all doctors hope for...alas, I've not made time for things like follow up visits and check ups for myself since the babies...(ok, ok, I wasn't all that great before the babies, so it didn't take too much arm twisting for me to be a full fledged patient on the lamb).

Anyhow, Brent was supposed to take the day off...*supposed to*. He had a tournament and was tied up at work. So off we went - the 3 amigos. Next time I'll just cancel my stinkin' appointment. I didn't because I made it over a month ago. That's right, over a month for a wellness checkup. So, we went. David of course bucked nap time (again) so he fell asleep in the 3 whole minutes (literally) it took to arrive at the office. (I hate waking sleeping David's!)

I nervously walked in a scoped out a quiet corner and tucked my wee ones safely away while I updated my information at the desk.

Enter Mary Louise's mouth...*screaming* - a sitter who had been with her client nosed on over to take a peek. Luckily, Mary Louise is not a fan of strangers (heck sometimes she's not a fan of family!) so she let out a warning yelp. I quickly maneuvered so that the stroller was facing 2 walls - away from chairs. Unfortunately, the disturbance was done and Mary Louise was in a complete panic to get out of the stroller.

Enter David, aka Mr. Green Eyes. I bounced Mary Louise on my lap while digging for crackers in the diaper bag and David felt HE should be allowed to join the fun OUT of the stroller.

My name was called...

The babies were WILD in the room. They quite literally dismantled just about everything there was to dismantle - paper on the table, magazines, Mary Louise pitched a fit because I kept her from banging on the computer keyboard. The staff had a good sense of humor about it all. I had to smile as Mary Louise squeaked her shoes around the office in search of her next paper victim.

We made it out, I was actually sweating from wrestling them back into the stroller. I needed lab work. We were already out, so I thought I might as well get it all over with, right? NO. Emphatic NO. NO in the loudest sense of NO. In the future, if I should get to a point like this again, I will cut my losses and go home. Today, I felt ambitious...

We pulled into the parking lot. Mary Louise pooped. As I was changing her diaper, I heard a click, didn't think anything of it, collected both babies as best I could and made my way to the front door.

IT WAS LOCKED!!! UGH! They actually locked the doors to the lab for lunch while I changed Mary Louise about 5 feet from the entrance. (hence the click I heard) Seriously. I stood there dangling 2 babies, insurance card in my mouth, Mary Louise grabbing at the keys I was just barely gripping with one finger, and gave the mirrored glass the stink eye until my arms started to go numb. Oh that's right, the stink eye. (and resisted the almost overwhelming urge to poop glue Mary Louise's diaper to the window...)

I put the babies back in their seats (much to their confusion and dismay), and we set off to kill an hour. Why? Because my bloodwork was to be done after a fast (and boy was I starving!). I'd been fasting since wake up time for the babies (around 7am) and it was now 12:30. One.more.hour...

We ran into the store to get diapers. David pitched an ENORMOUS fit there. Back in the car, I drove for a bit, the babies calmed, it was time for labs...

BACK to the lab (now open), we marched in, did the paperwork, and took a seat to wait. Thankfully, we were the only ones there. Mary Louise and David quickly honed in on the Kentwood fountain in the corner and proceeded to leak water on the floor. I smiled, exhausted, and remembered being that fascinated with things like that when I was little. At one point, I would have flooded the place with a smile and splashed in the puddles!

They were reasonably good while the blood was drawn...their attention was held by the fancy colored tubes and strange people really. I collected them and we were off. They fell asleep on the way home, slept for an hour in the driveway while I watched, and woke for family photos!!! (oh, that's right, when I over schedule a day, I really make it count!)

The photos went reasonably well. We got a number of full family shots and some of the babies together - and I'm sure a few separately.

It was beautiful outside, so after the pics, we stripped Mary Louise and David down to their skives and put them outside with the hose for some good old fashioned outside fun. A wonderful end to our ridiculous day. They ate ripe avocados and big chunks of peaches while playing in the water and flower pots. We all had a really good time and finished the fun off with baths in the kitchen sink - they were so so cute!

I'll go back to the doctor to discuss the results of the labs, and the results of a stress test in a few more health news later...


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Goals accomplished!

I participated in my very first duathalon on Saturday. I set goals to complete the route (2 mile run, 10 mile bike, 2 mile run) in under 2 hours...goals accomplished. I completed the race in 1 hour and 36 minutes with a smile and a giggle. I felt great - a little thirsty, ok, alot thirsty, pretty tired, but definitely not miserable. I even enjoyed going to the Saints game the next day (even though they!)!

So, I'm pretty proud...considering that just over a year ago, I could barely walk 100 yards after my hospital bed rest. If I can do this, I swear, ANYONE can!

The best part? Brent, the babies and family at the finish line, grinning from ear to ear and cheering me in for those last few leaps. It was great!

The weekend went well. We visited Mommom and Pops and MaMere so we got our doses of the doting grandparents. The babies had a ball - hugs and kisses over and over and lots of "big kids" to play with.

It's been a bit of a wild job putting David and Mary Louise to bed this evening - I'm pretty sure it will take a day or 2 before they realize that they're back in their own bed...Ms. Abbey is scheduled to come and meet them for the first time tomorrow. She will be helping me with them once or twice per week so that I can get a few things done around here - and maybe rest a little here and there.

Mary Louise is just about running now. She just began really walking a week or 2 ago but boy, did she really take off with it! David is just behind her - walking tons as well! It's truly amazing - and so surreal to think about how far they've come...

On the topic of speech - Mary Louise has started giving "lectures". If I asked David to do something, she is right behind me "repeating" the rhythm and length of whatever I say (in a very serious voice I might add). If I look at her, she grins her toothy grin and simply continues. She'll even point a finger and occasionally stomp a foot if the dogs are misbehaving. She's quite a trip that one! (and I do believe my hands will be more than full - absolutely overflowing- when attempting to handle my pseudo-momma!

David isn't quite as wordy, but can hold his own and get his point across when he really wants to. So, I'd say that they are both making progress, but no more discernible words just yet.


Thursday, September 23, 2010

(Squeak) Did you say something? (Squeak)

Mary Louise and David are hip and with it once again with their very own squeaky shoes (courtesy of Ma Mere and Pops). They came in yesterday, we put them on (though David's are a bit too big, he stumbled for a minute or 2 in them anyhow). They LOVED them. Mary Louise loved them so much this morning that she ran into the table. She was staring at them as she walked and giggling about the noise they made and wham! (sometimes they forget how tall they are now...a few weeks ago and that table would never have come into play - they are growing so so fast!).

I'm not sure why this one is upside down, but I'll post it anyhow - it's cute, and you get the idea...


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I'm no superman...

I finally did it. I've asked for help. Well, I've asked a few times, but this time is a little different. I have a friend who has agreed to come and play with Mary Louise and David once or twice per week so that I can get things done around the house, pump, nap, SHOWER! (ha!). Between the "momma momma momma" all day without breaks, and the "wah wah's" at night sometimes as often as once an hour, I'm just exhausted. The laundry is piling, the housework is mounding, and the little projects seem never ending.

Our family has helped and awful lot, been very very patient and accommodating, but it's time for us to find a go to person in town rather than putting them out every time we have an issue. Also, maybe Brent and I can have a date night here and there if things work out?!

Mary Louise actually tried running today!!! Ok, so it was actually chasing (can you guess who it was that she was trying to catch up with?), but she moved those little muscle legs faster than she's ever done before to try to catch me! David is walking more and more now as well. He still prefers crawling, but has begun to chose to walk short distances when he's already standing rather than getting back on the floor and crawling.

The high chairs are working out well - though David can scale his and stand on the tray in about 2 seconds flat so we cannot take our eyes off of them when the chairs are in use. Issues with eating are pretty much the same. David did try a bit of my blueberry bagel with cream cheese this morning and really seemed to enjoy it. Mary Louise said "no thank you" in so many gestures and wouldn't even play with the pieces I put in front of little watermelon queen. The sippy cup introduction has more bad or indifferent days than good right now - but that's ok - all I can do is keep trying. I am careful not to push too hard as I don't want them afraid of the darn things!

I have worked on them a bit with wearing shoes. Although they don't particularly enjoy the experience, they will let me put shoes on them for short periods now which is a vast improvement from the extreme fits, kicking and screaming I was getting just a few weeks ago. (I don't even bother with socks anymore - it's just futile).

Yesterday, I asked Mary Louise to bring me a "ba ba" for David. She smiled, toddled over and handed me hers. It was amazing! She really got it! I was so so proud of her. Today, I asked David to please stop throwing a plastic plate around in the kitchen and he smiled and stopped! They may not say much that everyone (or anyone) can understand, but they sure are taking it all in. (I'll have to remember that - no telling what will come out of their mouths when they do start talking!)

So, anyhow, I'm feeling a little defeated today, but I'll get over it, get my energy back and be the best momma I can be for those 2.


Saturday, September 18, 2010

This week's review...

Let's see...

Mary Louise is walking rather than crawling now. She walks pretty large distances (think 20 feet or more) regularly and crawls only to "get the rest of the way" when she looses her balance but has a mission in mind.

She found David's right ear and belly button one day...and proceeded to tug on both for a full 12 hours despite David's best efforts at warding her off.

Each morning now, I wake to Mary Louise smacking me in the mouth with her noggin. As it turns out, she learned the "lean in for kisses" on her forehead very very well - and loves to request them by ramming people repeatedly. It's very endearing really and I can't help but smile...even though I'll likely look like I've had collagen injections until I can teach her the word (and action) "gentle".

The reflux bug has continued and it seems that most nights one or both of the babies need their Zantac now. I hope their symptoms taper off again soon - but honestly, I count my many many blessings each day that this is our most immediate medical issue.

Eating is going pretty well. Mary Louise and David change so quickly and so often that it makes my head spin. One day, they want bite sized morsels and the next they are grabbing for utensils and breaking food up for themselves. Currently, they both like to bite off and chew many things - especially soft fruits (pears, mangoes, peaches) I rarely peel things anymore and they love it when I leave thicker skins on (mangoes)so that they can bite the fruit off for themselves. This week I gave them whole slices of watermelon with the rind still on and they really had fun! I think that the only major foods that they haven't tried are nuts (no peanut butter, etc), citrus and tomatoes. They have had food containing or processed with nuts though so I'm pretty sure they won't be a problem and I was just waiting on the tomato and citrus items as they are higher in acid and with reflux as an issue already, I'd like for their diet to not compound the problem.

David is just beginning to proudly walk rather than crawling. He will take just a few steps but is still and little unstable. He is making progress though so it's just a matter of time before they are both running around here! We're just so very thrilled about it!!

David has also officially started to call ME "Momma". Both he and Mary Louise have known the sound "Ma" for sometime, but they are both now assigning it to me when they want something. They also point to things they would like to see, hold, etc.

We have been working with both David and Mary Louise on scooting on their toys. David is really catching on well and kicks his legs so happily when I put him on his firetruck toy. I love that we were able to find a few things that fit our little guys! (Mary Louise is MUCH happier walking behind the toy and pushing it that way - though we're still encouraging her to coordinate her legs to scoot along while seated on the toys).

I still worry a bit about David's temper, but he is a little more directed with his tantrums. Most of them are a cause and effect situation (he was playing with something, Mary Louise took it, he pitches a fit). We are working hard with both of them on learning to let things go, finding a new direction and adapting to changes in circumstance (a lesson Brent and I can use as well).

October is pregnancy and infant loss month. I know, there's a month or day for everything these days right? I think of sweet Kuylen all. the. time. still. I'm actually amazed at how well I remember him. His perfect soft face. I can trace his little nose, ears, hands, and toes in my mind just as I did when I told him "goodbye". A piece of my soul is forever with his...just gone - and I still feel like I'm reaching for it, for him...

We are to officially sell our old house next week. We are still waiting on the final "clear to close" however so we're just keeping our fingers crossed that everything pans out and we can be over and done with the moving, and get on with the setting up of our new place.

Finally, poor Brent has been having some knee pain off and on for quite sometime but lately, it has gotten worse. He went to the doctor and there is a good possibility that he'll need surgery (a scope - so it's considered "minimally invasive" as if digging around in one's knee can be a minor procedure - ha!). We'll find out more about that next week!

Phew! Busy busy house! (but we're having so much fun!)