Tuesday, October 28, 2008

ARG!!!! Teething SUCKS!

I hate it. I hate it. I hate it. Do I need to go any further w/ this? Of course I do b/c otherwise this wouldn't be a blog, tee-hee!

Now, remember that Sofi & Ian have yet to get any "Ikes" so this is all about Gabi. Yesterday was a day from hell. There is no other way to put it b/c it was shear hell. I guess these are the days I have been hearing about. My kids were in a FOUL mood & I couldn't figure out what was going on. My dad suggested that it may be the pears. I thought that was the culprit until today. Gabi wouldn't even let me touch her mouth, especially her upper gums. They are so swollen & white that I know her teeth are about to cut through, it is just a matter of time AND hopefully it will be SOON! Mommy can't take many more days w/o naps or screaming when getting put in the crib. It wears on your nerves like nothing else.

On a brighter note, the kids are doing so many new things. Ianchito is rolling around like a maniac! He LOVES to grab for things & I foresee crawling in the near future for him. Here he is being a crazy boy & going for Checker's tail.

Gabi is sitting up! She surprised us on on Sunday by sitting up w/o support for a good 3 minutes. We were shocked b/c the longest she had gone before that was about 15-30 seconds.

Sofi loves her toes. She can't get enough of them! It doesn't matter that she is eating, she needs to be holding her foot.

Don't laugh too hard! These are the kiddos in the morning now that it is a bit chilly. I bring them to their bouncy chairs & they snuggle w/ their blankies while I finish pumping. Sofi likes to cover her face & we play peek-a-boo.

Gabi was working on keeping her hands warm.

This is Ian trying to get his blankie back from Sofi. Shame on Sofi!

Other than the teething, we are slowly adjusting our schedule for daylight savings time so tonight they got their bottles 15 min later than normal. We will push the last bottle 15 min later until Saturday & by Sunday they won't know the difference! Let's hope it works.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

We LOVE sippy cups!

Yes, you read the title right. They LOVE their sippy cups! I have been hesitant to let them "play" w/ them b/c I just thought they were too young. TOO YOUNG...HAHA! Once again mommy is wrong.

This all started w/ the fact that my online community of mommies has been talking about sippy cups & how they were introducing it to their babies. I was like, "HUH? My kids don't even hold their bottles!" Ok, that is a lie. Seriously, Ian is holding the bottle when he gets one. I even used a small preemie Dr. Brown bottle that we kept b/c I couldn't let them go...they are sooooo cute...& he held it all on his own. The small bottle is easier for him to hold although he also holds the big 8oz bottle too, just when it gets to about 2-3oz of milk left. It is still too heavy if it is full.

Anyway, back to the point. I thought for sure that sippy cups wouldn't be successful b/c they didn't hold their bottles BUT I decided to give it a go anyway. I took out their brand new sippy cups, put them in the dishwasher & then the next day, after breakfast, I decided to give them their sippy cups filled w/ some water. Look at my trio!

Gabi isn't interested at all. She doesn't even show any interest in holding her bottle like Sofi does. She is VERY CONTENT w/ someone holding the bottle or sippy cup for her.

Sofi figured out very quickly how to get water out of the cup & LOVES IT! She is such a big girl!

Ian also really enjoys using the sippy cup. He also likes to play w/ it. Of the 3, he is the best at guiding it in his mouth. Such a cutie!

I guess this is the beginning...they are starting to get more independent. I have to say I'm not grooving on this much. I can't believe I am already having to "let go". ARG! No one told me that motherhood would be this hard emotionally!

Oh, we also miss Daddy very much so Daddy if you are reading this...HURRY HOME!!!!!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

12 Hour Nights

Well, we finally decided it was time for us to start letting the babies sleep 12 hrs. I know, you are probably thinking "What? LET them sleep 12 hours???" Yeah, LET them sleep 12 hours, you read right. Todd & I have actually been holding on to the 5am feeding for our own selfish reasons. Todd likes to see them awake before he goes to work & I LOVE to BF them all 1st thing in the morning. We both knew the minute we let them sleep longer, they would & sure enough it happened just like that.

We decided that today we would transition them to not eating at 5am. Sofi & Ian never even woke up but we knew this would happen b/c we have been waking them up for the 5am for quite some time now. Gabi woke up a few times at 4:15, 5ish, & 5:45 w/ a squawk or 2 but went right back to sleep. I have a feeling tomorrow she won't wake up at all knowing that she isn't going to get the boob. WAAAAA...I'm so sad! I LOVED to feed them in bed! It just isn't feasible w/o someone here though so I'm back to giving BM in the bottle for the girls. Maybe I can still BF on the weekends w/ Todd's help. So, we now have another "new" schedule...

7am ~ Wake up & play (they are use to playing right after they wake up)
8am ~ BF/Bottles
8:45 ~ Cereal & fruits
10:00 ~ Nap time!
11:30 ~ Wake up & play
12:00 ~ BF/Bottles, play afterwards
12:45 ~ Lunch is coming soon...possibly by the end of the month.
2:00 ~ Nap time!
3:30 ~ Wake up & play
4:00 ~ BF/Bottles
4:45 ~ Veggies
5:30 ~ Family walk
6:45 ~ Bottles (formula w/ a tbs of rice cereal)

I haven't decided whether or not I like this new schedule. I can tell you it was nice getting 8 hrs of continuous sleep although I was up every time Gabi woke up. I think it may work out better this way. We'll see!

When Sofi isn't in the best of moods, she sucks on her paci & puts a burpie cloth over her head. She is very content this way.

Here are Gabi's 2 "Ike's". It was HELL getting this shot, LOL!

I LOVE this picture of Ian b/c he looks like he got caught doing something he shouldn't be.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

RSV & what does "sick" mean?

People don't seem to really understand what sick means when we tell them they can't come over if they are "sick". What we mean is if you have the sniffles or the remenents of a cough, DON'T COME OVER! I'm not trying to be rude but the dr specifically told us that you have to be symptom free to come visit. I'm sorry but we are listening to her over anyone else.

Why is this important? Because our babies are preemies. No, they aren't small anymore nor do they look ill. They actually look like any other 6 mth old baby at this point BUT their lungs are still underdeveloped & they still have a compromised immune system. This is very important to know b/c there is a virus called RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus) which to us or a full-term baby, would not do anything more than just give us a cough & a runny nose, much like the common cold. For our babies, it can mean DEATH.

Why? Our babies lungs look very different from that of a baby the same age that was born after 37 weeks gestation. Let me show you a picture of what our babies' lungs look like compared to that of a regular full-term baby. The 1st 3 pictures are that of our babies' lungs (not actual but you get the idea). The 4th picture is that of a regular baby. Scary to see how much less our babies have compared to them!

This is another good picture to look at. As you can see, they used trees to explain the difference between a normal infant's lungs (left) & a preemie's (right). WOW!

Finally, this is a photo of the airway when affected by RSV. On the left is a normal infant & on the right, a preemie. You can see how much LESS airway is open in the preemie's picture. SCARY!

Once RSV has been passed to one of our babies, hospital stay is a certainty. Actually, they would probably end up in the PICU (Pediatric ICU). There is NOTHING they can do to help our babies except to give them O2 to help them breathe. Again, something we don't want to experience.

How do we keep our babies healthy? By staying away from sick people! You may not even know you are carrying RSV & if you come over & infect our babies, you would feel very badly afterwards. Sorry if I sound so harsh but I have had to explain over & over again why it is important not to come over.

RSV is contracted through physical contact or vapor droplets in the air. This is why if Todd or I get sick, we will have to wear a mask anytime we are around the babies b/c obviously we can't avoid caring for them. RSV can also live on surfaces for several hours so you better believe I will be Cloroxing all surfaces at least once a day!

We are also hoping that we get the RSV shots but if we don't that means we are really going to be strict about who comes over & where we take the babies. No crowded places is a definite no-no. We will basically be on house arrest which is NO BIG DEAL if we can keep our babies healthy. The shots will buffer the effect, not prevent them from getting it so we are hoping & praying that we are approved!

Mommies, if you have experienced RSV w/ your little one, I would love for you to leave a comment so others can be educated from a 1st hand experience. I do not want my babies in the hospital. They started their lives there & I would like to keep them out as long as possible!

**THANK YOU to all the mommies that have left stories of their experiences w/ RSV. I can't believe how critically ill a full-term baby gets! I can only imagine what it can do to our trio.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

How do you do it?

I always have these fantastic ideas to blog about when I go to bed or any other inopportune times so I have started several & hope to get them posted in the future. Of course, there are many plans I have for the future. We'll see if they ever come to fruition b/c 1 thing I can tell you is that my kids have become more demanding. Please don't take it the wrong way b/c I don't mean it in the wrong way at all! They are growing & learning & needing me more than they did before. Ok, let's face it...they need me ALL THE FRIGGIN' TIME! I guess what I am trying to say is that they need me to interact w/ them more. Ok, no problem but I still have to pump & breastfeed so I have had to figure out how to do it. Not so easy! I am frequently asked how I manage. Let me throw it out there that at times, *I* don't know how *I* manage!

Ok, close your eyes...um...wait. I suppose you can't close them & read, right? Let's try this again. Don't close your eyes but try to visualize the following. Those of you that have pumped, you may get a better visual. I have a hands free bra which is basically a sports bra w/ 2 holes cut out so I can put the pumping cones in & not have to hold them w/ my hands. It is very convenient. So what I do is move the pump to the floor & then surround myself w/ toys & babies. I can pick them up, play w/ them, move them from the exersaucer to the floor mat to the bouncy chair w/o having to stop pumping. Hey, when you are a triplet mom, time is VERY valuable! I multi-task. You gotta do what you gotta do!

If you can believe this, I can also feed 3 babies at 1 time AND answer emails! I have Sofi in her bouncy chair w/ her bottle propped up using a Milk Maid propper.

Then I have Gabi wedged between the back of the couch & my leg & I prop her bottle. All this while I have Ian attached to the boob.

Yep, it is possible. While they are all eating, I am able to have 2 hands to answer emails or surf the web b/c Ian doesn't need me to hold him to stay in place to BF. Since I have a laptop, it sits in front of me on a boppy pillow, another great use for it besides for propping/holding/feeding babies.

You HAVE to get creative AND flexible to a certain degree. I'm not talking flexible w/ your scheduling b/c that is the only thing that keeps me sane at times. I'm talking flexible when trying to find solutions. Yep, you have to dig deep & use that brain to put the pieces of the puzzle together. Shoot, sometimes you have to take the whole thing apart & start over. Who am I kidding!?! Some people may think I am weird but I am going to do what ever it is that I need to do to make it.

That brings up another point. Everyone seems to think doing it on your own is hard. Maybe I am certifiably insane or maybe it is just easier to actually not deal w/ other people on a daily basis since I have a routine & I'm too lazy to explain it all to someone else. What ever the reason, it REALLY isn't hard to be here alone all day w/ my kids. Now, I may change my mind when they become mobile & I will have to write another blog about it & eat my words but for now, I like it. There are a few reasons why.

First, we have a good routine set up. I know what to expect & they know what to expect. It may be a bit repetative but it gets the job done & my kids seem to be just fine. Second, when someone comes over that hasn't been around before, I have to explain everything to them. Who wants to do that over & over again? Next, just like everyone else has *their* way of doing things, so do I. I feed the kids a certain way, change their outfits at certain times, put them down in a specific manner, etc. When someone comes over, those things change. Yep, I am a creature of habit. Why fix it when it ain't broke?

With that being said, I do have help a couple of times a week for a few hours. My MIL comes over & is a great help. By coming, it gives me a chance to pump w/o having to deal w/ all 3 babies or be able to run an errand quickly w/o dragging the babies w/ me. She also helps during the 1pm feeding. Sometimes my 13 yr old neighbor comes over after she gets home from school. We are friends & she likes to catch me up on her school/boy gossip about once a week AND she gets to see & play w/ the babies which she LOVES to do. That is also nice & allows me to mentor her at the same time. I guess that as much as I like being alone, a helping hand is welcomed. I don't want to sound like a hermit crab that hoards her children. I hope I don't come off the wrong way, haha!

When Todd gets home at 4:30, he is welcomed w/ open arms by the 4 of us. Perfect timing! From that point on, we work as a team. We have added daily walks b/c the kids have dropped their evening catnap. It is great to be a family!

Here are some more fun pictures of the kids...

Here is Ianchito pretending to be a big boy sitting in the big chair w/ the remote to the TV.

Here is Sofi after a really cranky episode. It never fails if I put her between me & the couch, she will fall asleep. This time she cuddled up to the pillow, just like her dad!

Gabi loves to roll around on the playmat!

One last picture...Kathy, a friend of Donna's, came to Houston & met the babies. She had the "magic" touch b/c when Sofi was acting up, she could calm her down. It is like Sofi melted in her arms. So cute!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Our 6 month exam!

First, can you believe it??? I can't! My babies are SIX MONTHS OLD! Where did the time go? They are amazing little babies & are doing so much now. I have to keep them entertained much more than before. During my pumping sessions, they use to be happy to just sit in their bouncy chairs...not any more! They need the stimulation. Gabi is the only one that continues to enjoy her bouncy chair & that is b/c she LOVES to pump her legs & make it bounce on her own. She look so precious doing it!

I busted out a "new" toy & the kids LOVE it. I don't know what it is called but it is part of the Fisher-Price Rainforest series. It is like an exersaucer but it actually bounces. I brought it out on Wednesday & the kids take turns in it. I think they love the fact that they can move around in it & there is plenty to entertain them. Here is Sofi playing in it this morning.

We also got these really cool floor tiles that are fantastic to put down underneath the playmat or for them just to roll around on b/c it is so easy to clean, not like a blanket where you would have to wash it after they have drooled all over it. These are nice b/c you just wipe them clean! This is Ianchito playing on the mat this morning & the tiles are under the mat. In case you are interested, you can get them at Toys R Us for under $30 & that is for the whole alphabet AND number tiles!

We have also moved on to green veggies & fruits as far as food goes. Yep, I'm still making it here at home. They enjoyed eating peas so for those of you that said it would make them gag...WRONG! I don't know if it is b/c they are freshly made or what but they gobbled them up like there was no tomorrow! I have to say that they reacted the same way to applesauce, YUMMY! I haven't homemade the applesauce yet but plan on it. I just bought a big jar of unsweetened applesauce rather than the jars of baby food. Below are Gabi, Ian, & Sofi eating peas for the 1st time!

Now for the dr's appt...everything is going very well! The babies are continuing to grow & are all on the regular growth chart. Here are their stats & the percentages is where they fall on the chart of a REGULAR, full term 6 mth old!

Gabi ~ 15lb 6oz (45%), 26 1/4" (60%)
Sofi ~ 14lb 10oz (25%), 25 3/4" (50%)
Ian ~ 14LB 6oz (5%), 26 1/8" (50%)

She is very impressed w/ their growth except for Ian's weight. He did grow 3" in 2 mths & that was great but he is still on the "skinny" side. Hmmmm...I'm doing all I can! I guess he is going to be tall & lean. They are all still breastfeeding 1at thing in the morning & getting BM throughout the day. The only bottle of formula is still their bedtime bottle. They are getting solids TWICE a day! I try giving them a fruit in the morning & then a veggie at night. So far, so good but this is only the 2nd day we have been doing 2 meals. They seem more content at the 1pm feeding.

We are waiting to see if we qualify for the RSV shots. RSV is a virus that is a cold but for preemies w/ diminished lung capacity, can cause BIG, BIG PROBLEMS. We meet some of the criteria which are 1) they are multiples, 2) there is asthma in the immediate family (Todd), and 3) low birth weight, under 2500 g or 5.5 lbs. Another criteria is that they be born after April 1, 2008 & we all know that they were born on March 31st so this is an "iffy" one. The dr believes that the insurance will most likely qualify us for the shots. Some of the other things they look for that we don't fit are 1) children going to daycare, 2) other siblings at home, and 3) degenerative heart disease (don't know this until after they are about a year old). We will find out by the end of the month.

IF for some reason we are denied, it will cause us to have to go in to seclusion. Yep, no going out of the house. Walks are ok but things like the mall or having lots of people over is a big no-no. I'm already use to not going out so this won't be an issue especially since I am still pumping/BFing. After we hit a year old, things will be different. We will be more mobile & go out of the house more often but not until after we get through this 1st year of RSV season & until I finish pumping.

OK, I wrote a book! WHEW!