Saturday, July 31, 2010

A Day at the Pool

Last Sunday my uncle Steve invited us to his house in Fort Smith to visit and get in the pool with the boys. They like their baths so we thought it would be fun to get them in the water. I got them little swim shirts and hats for their big adventure...they were so cute! We picked a good day and the shallow end of the pool was nice and shady for the boys. They loved floating around and even kicked their little legs like frogs. I will say that it seemed Archer enjoyed it more than Stockton but they were great the whole day. We weren't in the water very long, just enough to float around and get some really good pictures. Mainly it was a fun day for us more than it was for them I am sure. Getting into a swim suit less than 3 months after giving birth wasn't so fun for me...but you gotta do what you gotta do! Might as well face it...this body might not ever be the same but it gave us two beautiful baby boys! Definitely worth the sacrifice!

Below are some pics from our day!

The family!

We love little baby butt cracks!

Justin and Stockton

Me and Archer

Justin and the Boys

Sweet baby Stockton

Archer and Stockton...Just floatin' on a raft (fully supervised of course!!)

Stockton is strong!!

Archer - Just lounging around!

Me and my guys...Stockton is NOT a happy camper :)

Stevie introducing Stockton to Emma and Oz

That was our day in a nutshell! Lots of floating and laughs...a few cries but overall a lot of fun. I think we may have some water babies on our hands!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Back to blogging!

Long time no post! It has been a little hectic in our household lately, but things are finally starting to settle down. A lot has changed in my world but it's definitely all good changes. A big "thank you" to my fellow twin mom and new friend Alicia for encouraging me to start blogging again. After reading her blog it made me realize how fast the time is going by and I want to make sure I document every moment!

Get ready...this is going to be a long one!

We came home from the hospital on June 1st. What a journey and test of faith not only the pregnancy but the first three weeks of life were. St John was incredible, we were so thankful for our time but SOOO ready to take our little guys home. It was so crazy to actually take their wires off, put real outfits on them and load them up in the stroller to leave. They were finally ours! No more wires, monitors and alarms. No more daily trips to Tulsa to sit a small room. We were finally going home!

The first few nights were long. From day one the boys were put in their crib in the nursery. Thank goodness for video monitors! Of course I couldn't help but check on them quite a bit the first few nights. Those boys were noisy sleepers. It sounded like little barnyard animals in there. Squeak, squawk, squeak, squeal! They came home on a 3 hour feeding schedule. That was definitely one of the perks of being at the hospital - a solid feedng schedule which is imperative with twins. Obviously that is my opinion, but unless you want to be constantly feeding a baby all day and night a schedule is a must. After a week on the 3 hour schedule and a visit to our pediatrician we decided to try a 4 hour schedule for the boys. Eating at 6a, 10a, 2p, 6p, 10p and 2a. The b0ys took to it really well and Mom loved it! A little more time to rest and get some things done around the house. The boys were actually taking in more formula eating 6 times a day than they would eating 7 times a day.

Luckily we made it through the first few weeks home with most of our sanity. I am not going to lie...having twins is hard work! They may look alike but boy do they have their own little personalities! In the beginning, Archer wasn't fond of sleeping well during the 10p-2a stretch. Thankfully after a few weeks he grew out of that. We spent quite a few nights in the glider, both of us crying. It wasn't colic, heck I don't know what it was. Thankfully we made it past that. It seems like so long ago now. After the first few weeks we started letting the boys sleep as long as they wanted to after the 10pm feeding hoping to get some longer stretches of sleep for all of us. They were starting to sleep until 3am - about a 4.5 hour stretch - when Stockton started having trouble keeping his formula down. He was almost 7 weeks old and I was noticing that after every feeding his outfit would be soaked. It wasn't your typical spit up, he wasn't projectile would just bubble out of the sides of his mouth just like it came out of the bottle. I called the pediatrician and they said to feed him an ounce every hour. For 8 hours that Friday he kept it all down. By that night though, he was back to throwing up everything that went in his little belly. By the next morning he was throwing up stomach bile with tinges of blood. That's when this first time mom freaked out a bit. We headed straight to the Pediatric Urgent Care in Tulsa...they did some bloodwork and x-rays and sent us directly to St Francis. By that time he was continuously throwing up blood - it was beyond scary. They wheeled us down to get an ultrasound of his tummy and it showed that he had Pyloric Stenosis. They Pyloris - the muscle that allows food to leave the stomach and enter the intestines - had closed and that meant his formula had no where to go but UP and OUT. Poor little guy! He was so dehyrated they had to pump him full of IV fluids all day Saturday and wait to do surgery until Sunday. He made it through the surgery but had some apnea issues related to the anesthesia. He would fall so deeply into sleep that he would forget to breath. This lasted almost 36 hours...he had to be held and I would have to shake him everytime the alarms would sound (which was almost every few minutes) so he would start breathing on his own. Finally he came out of it and we were able to take him home that Tuesday. In my heart I just knew that Archer was going to have the same problems. He had started showing some of the signs that weekend and it was just a wait and see game. Sure enough, we got Stockton home and at the 10pm feeding that night Archer projectile vomitted all over me. It continued through the night and subsequent feedings so I took him to St Francis Wednesday afternoon. Sure enough, a quick ultrasound showed that his Pyloris muscle had closed too. What are the odds?? I had asked the surgeon earlier that week if both boys were have the same issue and he was doubtful...obviously he was wrong!

Stockton before surgery

Archer before surgery

The surgeon that did Stockton's surgery just happened to still be at the hospital when we arrived and agreed to stay and do Archer's surgery that night. Since he had not been throwing up for as long he could handle the surgery that night. We were glad to have the same surgeon because now they would have the same scar!
Archer's surgery scar

When the boys got home they were back on a 3 hour schedule and doing well. But after a few days they just weren't eating well so we decided to try a 4 hour again. It worked like a charm and we were all happy again. Especially me!
The following Sunday (July 4th) we noticed that Archer was having a bowel movement with every diaper. That is not normal for a formula baby. By the end of the day he was starting to pass some blood with each movement. It got worse with every diaper. We had a post op/2 month/vaccination appointment with the pediatrician scheduled for Tuesday so we waited and watched. It just kept getting worse. As if the pregnancy, hospital stay, 2 surgeries in one week weren't enough...n0w I have a baby that is pooping blood! Turns out that Archer developed an allergy to cows milk protein and was put on Similac Alimentum - a formula that has broken down the cows milk protein so small that it wouldn't bother his tummy. The formula worked and within a day he was feeing much better. Now, the smell and the price aren't so pretty. I think all formula's stink, but this one is just terrible. And compared to Stockton's formula ($15 per can) the $28 per can price tag makes my tummy hurt a bit! Considering a can last's about 2.5 days - you do the math! But, as long as he is healthy the price doesn't matter. Now, I have to make two different pitchers of formula every day and make sure to keep their bottles fun!
There is never a dull moment with twins!
Since the surgeries the boys are doing great. They continue to grow and change daily. I don't know their exact weights right now but Stockton is about 11 lbs and Archer is over 11.5 lbs.
Here is a brief description of our day if you want to know....right now it's a mixture of a 3 and 4 hour schedule until they start sleeping through the night (please babies, start sleeping through the night!!)
7am - Rise and Shine! First feeding of the day. They usually fall right back asleep and nap until 10am.
10am - Feed then wake time. They are starting to stay awake longer. We play on our play mat, do tummy time until they start showing sleepy signs like yawning or rubbing their eyes. Usually we go down for our nap around 11:30am/11:45am until 2pm.
2pm - Feed then wake time. Same as above, usually down for their nap at 3:30pm until 6pm
6pm - Feed then wake time. They don't nap well after the 6pm feeding for some reason. Usually they just cat nap..on the days we take a bath, we bathe around 7:15pm.
9pm - The Witching Hour! It doesn't matter if they are napping in their swings, being held or in their cribs napping...around 9pm they get a little witchy - every day. They aren't showing hunger signs yet, just super cranky!! Makes for a fun evening :)
9:40pm - Feed then immediately put to bed. We let them sleep until they wake us in the night. I have been trying to give them a paci and pat them back to sleep when they wake to start getting some long stretches of sleep but it has only bought me about 30 mins at this point. We are hoping they start stretching it out a bit soon!! They usually wake between 3:30am and 4am so I really can't complain. Although last night they slept until 4:40am...we are making progress!!!
We are very lucky that we can swaddle the boys and lay them down in their crib and they will fall asleep without fighting it or needing to be rocked. Hopefully once they start putting on a little bit more weight they will start sleeping through the night.
Tummy Time with Rebel

They are doing really well on their tummy time. At 4 weeks they were rolling from their tummies to their backs - I think mainly because they were so mad to be on their bellies. This week they have started rolling again. The looks on their faces is priceless when they land on their backs! My strong little fellas!

They are starting to show their personalities too. We got some big smiles from Archer yesterday. It just melted my heart!!

Happy Archer!
Well...gotta go. It's time to eat! I am looking forward to posting more...hopefully they won't be nearly this long :) but will have more pictures!