Saturday, October 30, 2010

Pre-Halloween Goodies



I know you've heard about our wonderful neighbors.
I honestly don't know how we got so lucky.
But we did.

Miss Kathye came over on Monday w/ cookies for the kids.
She heard they weren't feeling well.
Boy, did those cookies make their day.

And then on Friday, she came over again.
This time she came w/ buckets-o-stuff.
All to do w/ Halloween.
(for the 2nd year in a row)



And boy did the buckets keep the kids busy.
For 2 days!
That's a momma's dream come true.

Thank you Miss Kathye!

Happy Halloween...pictures will be up tomorrow.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Sick Days

It is so funny how things are evolving.
Once upon a short time ago, I would have MAJOR anxiety when I saw a runny nose or a low grade fever.
Now, I am managing it better.

Anxiety, yes.
When the kids got sick for the 1st time ever, it was disastrous.
He ended up in the hospital that night w/ an hour long seizure.
A 2 day stay.

Then another seizure 4 days later.
And a floppy baby.
Not able to feed himself.
Sit up, forget it.
No rolling over.
No pulling up to stand.
Having issues breastfeeding.

It was bad.
And mommy's instinct told me something was VERY wrong.
They insisted it was the flu's wrath.

I knew better.
He was jerking around when he tried to move.
(later found out it was ataxia)
It wasn't pretty.

And then I thought I figured it out.
B/c I was Dr. Googling it every moment I could.

He had brain damage & the result was cerebral palsy.
Todd thought I was crazy.
The doctor wouldn't listen to me.

Until I finally broke down & insisted he go to the ER.
He was admitted almost immediately upon arrival.
They could see it was neurological.
It needed immediate attention.

Then the waiting started.
What was it?
No one could figure it out.

Spinal tap
EEG
CT Scan
MRI
EKG
Bloodwork
Metabolic testing

It all happened.
It all came back completely normal.

He finally got diagnosed by exclusion meaning they couldn't find a damn thing wrong.
Then the IV steroids were started.
And he started to get better.

But it has been a long road.
A very long road.
Almost 2 years of therapy have gotten him close to "normal".

He is still lacking in speech but it noticeably every day.
His therapists are even impressed at the burst of growth & development.
He graduated from his AFO's & then his SMO's (both are foot/ankle/leg braces).
He is no longer in physical therapy.

Even bigger, he isn't being referred to the school district for continued services after the kids turn 3.
That's huge.
Ginormous.

Worthy of celebration.

But there is still the issue of future illnesses.
Ian's autoimmune system went haywire.
His body continues to react more to a virus than the girls.
I have a feeling it will always be like that.

And trust me, I have thanked my lucky stars on a daily basis.
We could be dealing w/ many more illnesses but the kids are relatively healthy.
Thank God.

That doesn't mean that a fever isn't still met w/ ferociousness in this house.
We beat it down.
If Ian's fever gets over 102, we are in the tub.

That's just the way it is.
I don't want to ever see my boy seize for an hour if I can help it.
I don't ever want to see him intubated WITHOUT sedation again.
This momma, along w/ Daddy, will do what we need to.

Which brings me full circle.
For the past 2 years, illness meant serious anxiety.
And while the anxiety still rears it's head when a fever shows up,
I can honestly say we are handling it so much better.

A perfect example was this past week.
Ian & Sofi both sprang up w/ a fever out of no where.
No symptoms, nothing.
Turns out there is a 24-36 hr high fever virus going around.
And they got it.

We handled it much better than in the past although we ended up in a cool bath on Sunday afteroon.
Ian & me.
Fun.
But it worked.
And we survived.

Sorry to be so serious.
Sometimes it helps to write it out.

To lighten the mood a bit, this is what we do on sick days.
Entertain the kids how ever we can!
This time it was bringing in their wagon & making it a comfy station.
They loved it.




Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Messy Faces

Todd got me an awesome new lens for our anniversary.
AF-S Nikkor 55-200mm 1.4-5.6 G
I love it!
But w/ the love comes the learning process.
I'm not use to having to stand so far away.

The trade off?
Awesome close ups & action shots.
I mean this lens rocks!

You'll have to wait for the action shots next time.
They are from the Firehouse Open House.

Until then, check out these 2 beautifully messy faces & one very sad face.




And of course, I had to include this one.
Ian didn't put down his drill set for 4-5 days.
It even went to bed w/ him.
Every chance he had, he was screwing & unscrewing.
This time, he just happened to have whip cream on his nose.



Saturday, October 23, 2010

Another fine triplet moment...


One day this won't happen anymore.
Until then, I will capitalize on it.
Take every picture that I can.
Remembering that this is what having triplets is all about.

They have a special bond.
There is no denying it.

Sure, sometimes they need their space.
BUT...the truth of the matter is that they prefer to be together.
And so it shall be, for now.



Sunday, October 17, 2010

Picture Perfect Day?

Only time will tell.
The photo shoot this morning took all of 20 minutes.

Yes. 20.

Either the photographer got mad skillz & got the perfect pics in a record amount of time.
OR...

the kids ran her ragged!

I think it is the latter of the 2.
We will see when we get the CD of pics.
Until then, feast your eyes on the pics I took of my trio in their super cute outfits made by?

You guessed it!
Their MOMMA!
And that includes the headbands.

Here is the whole crew together.


The Beatles Abby Road...reenacted.


Miss Sofi...although looks very serious, was having a blast!




My 2 favorite boys in the whole wide world!


My handsome blue-eyed boy!





My sweet Gabi.





Thursday, October 14, 2010

RSV Season...for the last time!

Yep, it's time. Hopefully the LAST time I have to blog about this. Time to once again remind everyone that although our children look absolutely normal, their prematurity still stands in the way of them being able to effectively fight a virus such as RSV or the flu. I have heard one too many horror stories of preemie moms cutting loose the reigns after their kids hit 2 & then WHAM! They get hit w/ RSV & land in the hospital.

I rather stay safe than sorry.

Honestly, last season wasn't too bad. Most people understood what our requirements were w/o a fight. They understoond that much better b/c of what we endured w/ Ian in January of 2009. It just goes to prove that no matter how careful you are, a virus can be easily transmitted from 1 healthy person & wreak havoc on a small child, especially one born 6 weeks early.

Here is last 2 years' post, revised for this year.

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 remnants of a cough or even a tickle in your throat, 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 2.5 yr old toddler at this point BUT w/ Ian's case history, it is still important that we protect them. 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 an almost 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 via vent (intubated) to help them breathe. Again, something we don't want to experience ESPECIALLY after seeing Ian intubated w/o sedation in 2009. VERY SCARY!

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 afterward. 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!

A new implementation from last year will be carried on this year & that is that people coming from crowded places such as schools, will be required to change clothing. We need to take the extra precautions b/c of what happened to Ian. If you would like to read more about what we went through, the link is below.

Ian & Post-Infectious Cerebellitis

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!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Being Triplets

My kids can love each other.
Or hate each other.
It is most definitely a roller coaster ride on most days.

But when the going is good,
it is really good.

I love how they all sit really close together.
It makes me smile.



They sat this way for well over 30 minutes.
And ignore the Diet Pepsi in Sofi's hand.
She was "pretend" drinking it.
They all love to "pretend" drink Mommy's Diet Pepsi.

Go figure.

And please forgive me for my blogging absence.
My little business has gotten a tad bit bigger.
Halloween seems to be an extremely busy time of year.
Arg...help me!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Finally, a GRRRRREAT family picture!

It wasn't planned.
But then, what is w/ triplets.
We were all geared up for UT game day.

Yes, we know they lost.

Again.

But anywho.
The morning was beautiful.
The kids wanted to go for a walk.
And while we were on the way out,
our favorite neighbor, Jane, came out.

She offered to take some pics.
She's pretty good w/ a camera.
To the point where I sometimes question whether we should ever pay for pics again.
But then, she doesn't edit them.

S'pose I could find someone to do that.
Or me.
But I already have enough on my plate.
(oh boy...do i ever have enough on my plate)

And this is what Neighbor Jane caught...

PERFECTION
(for any triplet + mommy out there, you know this is true)



I've been waiting a long time to get a good family pic.
This is it.

And if the professional photog can't get a better pic,
this will be our Christmas card.

CHEESE!



Monday, October 4, 2010

Boats, Bubbles & Beyond!

The weather here is fabulous.
It is never this beautiful for this long.
Because it is irresistible,
we have spent countless hours outside playing.

Not just in our backyard.
In our neighbors' yards.
Driveways.
Sidewalks.

We've even been practicing to cross the street.
GASP!

But best of all, we have been playing in Neighbor Rich's boat.
Oh have the kids loved the boat.
They've climbed in it.
Drove it.
Honked the horn in it.
Put the radio on & jammed in it.
Figured out how to put the engine blower on in it.

You name it,
they've done it.




And I can't forget to mention Ian's new obsession w/ real cars.
Especially nice, fast cars.
2 days in a row he sat in the car & played.


Rich showing the kids how to use the water hose.
That meant wet kids.
Very wet.



Gabi loved playing in her big bucket of bubbles.
LOVED.


So did Ian!



Ian finally figured out how to work the hose.
Only problem, he kept squirting himself in the face!


Did I mention we washed the boat?


And after all that fun,
the kids were EXHAUSTED.
Totally.
So were we.

Fabulous weather = time outdoors.
(Notice I was actually in some pics...thanks Kathye!)


Friday, October 1, 2010

Happy Anniversary!

Today it has been 5 blissful years of marriage.
We've made it this far.
He promised me to make it to 50, if not beyond.
Only 45 more wonderful years to go!

My present for him...


I felt so bad that his POS would not cook him a good steak.
This is the perfect present.
I even got his father's stamp of approval!
(and yes, it is a gas & carcoal smoker all in one)

Daddy got Momma this...


I've been salivating over this since I got my D3000.
Now I have it.
And now I have to learn how to use it.
Actually, on the Christmas list...

a photography class.

I think I would enjoy it.

To my hubs...thank you for these past 5 years of marriage.
For these past 9 years together.
I couldn't have asked for a better life.

LOVE YOU!