Monday, December 16, 2013

Friendships Change

I'd like to think that I've been a good friend to those people that I knew before having kids.  There aren't that many of them, but I feel like I still make time for a phone call, e-mail, text message, coffee date, or whatever.

One of my friends had a baby this summer and have really lost contact with her since then.  I went to visit her in the hospital, once after she got home, and she also came briefly to the girls' birthday party.  I've sent a few text messages and called a few times... we made rough plans to get together one week but she didn't call so we never got together.  The next time we had rough plans, I told her that the kids had runny noses so she decided not to come over.  Can't say I blame her... but she also works in a germ factory where kids always have runny noses.

I told Brian that maybe she doesn't want to be friends anymore because if she did, she would make time to hang out.  He just tells me that I'm being too sensitive and says that she's busy with work and her new baby.  My thought is that I made time to hang out and go do things when I had the girls... and even still after I had the boys.  I always make time to see people that are important to me... even if they live 900 miles away.  Perhaps people change and grow out of friendships and I guess if that happens then it is what it is.  I know I'm not the same person I was before having kids but I'd like to think that I fit my kids into my existing life (with a lot of changes) without completely losing my close friends and shutting everyone out.  Everyone adapts differently, and priorities do change, but I think adult friendships are important to maintain in order to have a healthy balance in life.

I will admit that I find it hard to make friends.  When you stay home all day, where do you even meet people!?  I've been trying to connect with other moms (many of which have twins) and find that they can relate more to the daily chaos that goes along with having twins.  Some moms I've met, I can really connect with and others not so much.  So, as hard as it has been, I will keep putting myself out there and I'm sure eventually I will find some people to hang out with.

As kind of a side note, last night we went out with the friend I mentioned above and it really wasn't that fun.  We went to see some outdoor lights and she brought her husband and her baby along.  We didn't really chat, and it was kind of awkward.  Could have been that her husband was there (because she's a completely different person around him) or the fact that we are growing apart.  Who knows.  We were supposed to go to this thing on Saturday night, when she asked if we could change our plans last minute to Sunday.  I was not super happy about it as the girls were dressed and ready to go and I had already told them we were going to "Go Go Go in the car and see some lights..." There was a local Mothers of Multiples event that another MOM had asked if I was going to go to earlier in the day and I had said no because I had other plans... so I went to that instead.  I felt bad that the girls didn't understand why Mom was now leaving and they weren't going so that wasn't great.... but I took the opportunity to get out of the house without all of the kids.  The moral of the story is that when you have 4 kids, you plan all day for outings and its not great to cancel/change last minute.  We ended up going on Sunday night instead and like I said, it was fine and I enjoyed my time with the girls but it wasn't anything special being there with my friend.

In the car all ready to go home after seeing the lights

Char was very interested in the tree

Char didn't want to sit down... she wanted to see the bark on the tree

All bundled up in their snow gear.  It wasn't snowing, but it was pretty chilly.

Friday, December 13, 2013

9 Months!

I am behind on my monthly posts (of course!) but if they are all behind, does that really make them late?

Elliott and Oliver- 9 months!

The boys are growing like weeds.  Seriously.  We don't go for the boys 9 month appointment until Friday, so I weighed them when they were actually 9 months.  Elliott weighed in at an astounding 24.2 pounds and Oliver weighed in at 19.6! The weight difference these days is crazy!! Hard to believe though that my (not so) tiny baby boys are so big already! (Okay, so I started this post a few days ago and here are today's stats.... 10 months next week!)

Height: 29.25 inches 84%
Weight 24lbs 7.6 ounces 98%
Head: 48.2 cm >95%

Height 27.25 inches 11%
Weight 20lbs 0.1ounces 57%
Head 48 cm >95%

Both of the boys are wearing 18 month clothes and some 12 month.  They both wear size 3 diapers, but I could probably move Elliott to 4s.  I just bought a bunch of 3s though so I want to try and use those up first.  Elliott has 2 teeth that he got right around 8 months (bottom front two) and Oliver has 1 tooth (bottom front) that he got right at 9 months and is working on one more.  Elliott has been super cranky the last few days and has swollen upper gums so I'm hoping those two teeth make their appearance sooner rather than later... I need my good sleeper back!

Elliott is sitting, getting himself into a sitting position from laying down, crawling all over the place, pulling himself up onto furniture, cruising the furniture, and can (finally) get himself down from standing. We had a weird period of time where he could stand up but not get himself down so he would just cry until I came to his rescue during nap time.  Just today, I also saw him pushing one of his big toys around the living room.  Its a table looking toy and it slides pretty well on the laminate flooring.  Brian and I are guessing that he will be walking in the next 2-4 weeks.  I guess we will see!  Oliver is GREAT at sitting.  In fact, he loves it.  He is not crawling yet, but just within the last 2 weeks he has started scooting on his butt all over the house!! I took one of the girls to change a diaper the other day, and when we were done, he had made his away across the living room all the way into the girls' room!  I was a little bit shocked to see him there, but happy that he's becoming more mobile.  Although the thought of having FOUR mobile children scares the crap out of me.

The boys' smiles just melt my heart every single day.  For the most part, they are both super happy babies.  When I was pregnant with them someone told me, "No way will you have two more happy babies!!!" And well, I did!  I read somewhere that if you are calm and not stressed that the babies will be calm and not stressed so I try to keep calm.  Not to say that it always works, but most of the time.  With 4 kids two and under, you have to just go with the flow a lot of the time or you would just go absolutely nuts!

Elliott loves to chew on shoes (Yes, gross, I know.) lick your face, play with anything on wheels, and get lots of hugs and kisses from his mama.  Oliver likes to chew on stuffed animals, sleep with his blankey, stick out his tongue, and be held by mama.  He also loves to play with the school bus that I got for the girls. Both boys are saying mama and dada too!

The girls are generally really great with their "bro bros."  Today we were playing downstairs and Elliott had a poopy diaper.  I sent Char upstairs to get "washies" and a "di-dah."  I said "washies" and she repeated it back to me while nodding and did the same for the di-dah (diaper).  She came back downstairs with the wipes and changing pad from her room.  Close enough, right?  After that, she wanted to play on the changing pad, so I sent Evy up for a diaper.  She even got the right sized one from the boys' room.  The girls will also bring toys to the boys when they are playing, get stuff away from them that they aren't supposed to have (like random pieces of paper that they find) and put their bottles in the sink when they are all done.  Sometimes the girls even sit by my pump, lift up their shirts, and put the tubes in their belly buttons to "make milk a babies."  I always tell them that I have to make milk for the babies while I pump and they like to do anything that mom likes to do.

Speaking of milk, I still make about 40 ounces per day of breast milk.  My 12 month goal doesn't seem so far off these days and I can finally see the light!  I'm still pumping 5 times per day and taking about 100mg of doperidone to keep my supply up.  I think I will keep this up until the 12 month goal, and then start dropping my domperidone and my amount of pumps per day.  It will be nice when I don't have to plan my day around pumping, but I also think it will be hard to let it go since its been part of the routine now for so long.  I joined an exclusive pumping group on FB and there are some women that pump for TWO years.  Holy cow.  I know its still great for them as toddlers, but that's a LONG time to pump.

The boys eat three 6 ounce bottles during the day (9am, 1pm, and 7pm.)  They get one more bottle during the night at whatever time they wake up.  They get two solids meals per day at 8am and 5-6pm.  Naps are at 9:00 and 1:00 and bedtime is at 7:00-7:30.  The boys are eating their purees like champs!  They usually get a fruit, veggie, and oatmeal all mixed together.  Oliver loves anything with bananas and Elliott isn't too picky.  Elliott will pick up his cheerios, eggs, french toast, pancakes, cheese, black beans, or whatever else I give him and eat them by himself.  Oliver still isn't really doing the pincer grasp thing and prefers to eat purees.  For a while, he really wouldn't even tolerate things like cheerios or puffs but they are starting to grow on him.  Oliver is on a dairy free diet that he will hopefully outgrow at a year.

I really became a crazy schedule keeper after daylight savings time.  I just couldn't handle the fact that I didn't "know" when I was going to have a break.  We sometimes get off schedule if we go somewhere or what not, but I end up paying for those days when the kids don't all nap well.

What else can I say about these boys?  They are just growing and growing and growing right in front of my eyes!! Before I know it they will be in high school and ready to leave the house.  That's just how fast it goes.

Elliott, Mama, Ollie
Elliott and Mama


Elliott and Oliver


Elliott! Standing!!

Playing with a toy while waiting for the GI doctor

Elliott is enjoying his food

Yummm! Ollie

Shopping trip with all 4 kids (and my sister!)

Look, Mom! I can stand up.... but I can't get back down



Elliott likes to put his hand in his food and then put his hand in his hair... Sigh

Feeding Ollie, holding Elliott and taking a picture!



Saturday, December 7, 2013


Where do I begin.... I have been putting off writing this post because we still do not have all of his problems solved (but maybe we never will!)

At Oliver's 4 month well check, I mentioned to his pediatrician that he sounded hoarse.  I hadn't really noticed or thought it was a problem, but my mom had asked if he always sounded like that.  I also brought up the fact that he wasn't breastfeeding well and that I thought he had a tongue tie.  The pediatrician sent us off to see an ENT doctor and we had to wait about a month to get in with her.

We saw the ENT on I believe a Tuesday, and she said that he was tongue tied and that he also needed a bronchial scope.  Since he was going to go under general anesthesia anyways, she said she would clip his tongue then so it wouldn't be painful for him. (I believe I posted about this back in August when it all happened.)  She also recommended us to put him on Prilosec for what we had just discovered was acid reflux.

I was really hoping that the tongue tie being fixed would be a cure all to his breastfeeding problems.  Nope.  I tried nursing him the day after his procedure but we were still not successful.

I met with the ENT again 4 weeks later for a follow-up.  She asked if his meds were working to control the reflux and if his hoarse voice was gone or not.  I told her that he was still hoarse, so she referred me to GI and also to get an upper GI done.  If you are unfamiliar with an upper GI, its basically a test where they have you swallow barium after not eating for 3-4 hours and take images while the barium is being swallowed.  They look for any anatomical abnormalities.

I scheduled the upper GI and I was not expecting anything to come of it.  He drank the barium like a champ (probably because he was hungry!!) and they took a bunch of images while he drank it.... rolled him side to side, and also had him lay flat on his back.  I should have known something was up when the radiologist left the room to go talk to someone else and didn't come back for a bit.  She saw something "abnormal" and wanted a second opinion on what she saw.  She mentioned that it could be redundancy of the duodenum or malrotation of the duodenum.  Don't ask me to explain those two things to you, but one would have meant surgery.  I was freaking out to say the least!  I called my mom after the procedure in hopes that she could explain to me what the radiologist said (because I was crazily trying to just remember the words she used!)  She said to come back and repeat the procedure in 2 weeks because she wasn't exactly sure what she saw and that it was inconclusive.

I was anxious to get the procedure scheduled, so I called every day until they had put in a new referral for the upper GI.  I scheduled it for exactly 2 weeks because it was killing me not knowing what was wrong and if my baby was going to have to have surgery!  I was not excited at the thought of surgery, but just wanted to know one way or the other.

We completed the second upper GI with no problems and guess what? Everything was normal! Hooray!

A few weeks later we made an appointment with a GI doctor to figure out what was going on with Oliver's reflux.  The ENT passed us off to the GI doctor and warned us that she may say that it wasn't actually reflux at all because they tend to disagree with the ENTs.  Great.

Let me just stop for a second (sorry this post is so scatter brained!) and list the reasons WHY we started seeing all of these doctors in the first place.
1.) He had a hoarse voice
2.) He was waking up every 2-3 hours at night and was completely inconsolable some nights.
3.) He was arching his back and resisting feeds.... he was acting like we were putting boiling water down his throat when we fed him is bottle
4.) He had horrible gas and would sometimes pass gas for HOURS, finally have a bowel movement and then fall asleep (to me this said that his tummy was really hurting)

Okay, so back to the GI. I had taken Oliver in to see the doctor TWICE before our GI appointment.  Once I saw one of the physician's assistants because I couldn't get in with his pediatrician and she said he was waking up at night out of habit... because he had gotten"used to" me getting up to feed him.  She said there was nothing medically wrong with him and that I just needed to let him cry it out.  Um, no.  You are wrong.  A couple weeks later (I think) I took him in again because I just didn't know what else to do.  He was just in so much pain, wasn't sleeping at night, and I felt so helpless!  The pediatrician was so patient with us and oh boy was I grateful.  She even made a call to GI to see what she could do to help us (NOW!) and if they could move up our appointment (Which they did!)  At that point, we doubled his dose of Prilosec, and talked about changing his formula to a hypoallergenic formula such as Alimentum or Nutramigen.  The doctor she talked to on the phone that day didn't think that was his problem... but I suppose its hard to diagnose something with little information over the phone.

A couple days later, we finally got in to see the GI doctor.  She wasn't my favorite person, and I didn't really agree with everything she said.  She said we needed to put rice cereal in his bottle and switch him to hypoallergenic formula... both of which I was not really okay with.  The reason for the cereal is to keep babies from spitting up.. and he never even did that! He has silent reflux.  We got home that day and tried to give him Nutramigen and he would not drink it if it was the last thing on earth.  That stuff smells so bad that I can't say I blamed him.  The GI doc told me to put Splenda in it for a few days to get him to drink it and my first thought was, HELL NO!  I don't eat/drink anything with artificial sweeteners because I don't want it in the boys' breastmilk so I sure as heck was not going to put it in my little boy's bottle.  So, if he wasn't going to drink it, what was I going to do?  Option 2: Eliminate dairy and soy from MY diet so that it not be in Oliver's breastmilk.  Easy, right? Wrong.

I started on a soy/dairy free diet the next day and continued to try and get Ollie to drink the icky formula so that I had something to supplement with.  I still had no luck, so I got some sample cans of a different hypoallergenic one that I eventually did get him to drink.  But, it was $27.99 for a small can so I decided to stick with the dairy/soy thing as well so he could still have mama's milk.

Five weeks later we had a follow-up with the GI doctor.  (Last Monday.. Nov 25th)  After writing this and thinking back to how bad his reflux/stomach issues were, I really can't believe how much it has improved.  I told the doctor that he wasn't having problems anymore and that everything was going fantastic.   Somehow it came up that I was still feeding him breastmilk instead of switching just to formula and the doctor was very surprised.  I felt like I had to explain myself to her and I really shouldn't have had to.  At one point I said something like, "Why would I give him fake milk when I can give him breastmilk?" She got very defensive and told me how they are able to make formula very close to breastmilk these days.  I'm thinking to myself, "Lady, you must be nuts!" I mean seriously!  Formula is made for any infant and my milk is made for MY BABIES!!!  I respect other mothers' decisions to formula feed, but I really expected her to tell me it was great that he was still receiving breastmilk and not make me feel like crap. I have no problem using formula, because that's what its there for but its not my number one choice.

At the conclusion of the appointment, she said we can add soy back into the diet! YAY!  I was pumped when I heard that.  At the end of December, we are also going to cut his Prilosec in half and see what happens.  If all goes well with that, when he's about 11 months, we will re-introduce dairy and hopefully lower his medicine even more.  She said we would switch to a "gentle" formula, but I am NOT switching to formula completely so I'm interested to see what she is going to say about that.

All in all, he is doing well.  He's now sleeping all night long too! The past two weeks he started waking up only once per night, eating, and going right back to sleep.  And in the past two days, he quit waking up during the middle of the night!! After 9.5 months, this mama might actually be able to get a full night's sleep and needless to say, I'm really really excited about that!!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving 2013

My goal for the holidays this year is to keep them low key.  Sometimes things can get so stressful and that's not what Thanksgiving/Christmas are all about.

We got up like usual (a little late actually! 7:30) and I pumped while Brian got the kids ready for breakfast.  We had to get our stomachs ready for a big dinner so he made hash browns, sausage, eggs over easy and toast.  The girls had eggs, a banana, cereal, and toast and the boys had home made sweet potato mixed with multigrain cereal.  

After breakfast we Skyped with my mom, sister, her boyfriend, brother, and sister-in-law.  They were all baking pie so that was kind of fun!  The girls are still scared of people that aren't my mom when they see them on Skype, but we are still working on that.

The boys went down for their nap a little bit late (around 10:00 instead of 9:00) were up by 11:30 and then down again at about 1:30.  We put the turkey in about 12:30 and didn't start any of the sides until the turkey was basically done!

My family in MN was at my grandma's house so I got a chance to also Skype with them while all of the kids were sleeping.  Elliott ended up waking up early, so he provided some entertainment for them as well.

After the kids all got up from their naps (around 3:30 I think) we started making our sides!  Grandma wanted to Skype again so we did!  Evy was having crying fits and Char was afraid of the other people there but the boys sure enjoyed seeing everyone!  Elliott stood up holding onto the table for a while and Oliver charmed everyone with his smile.  I think its pretty awesome that we can still see family on Thanksgiving despite being 1000 miles away!

I blended up some "turkey dinner" for the boys and you should have seen the looks on their faces! They took a couple bites and were just not having it.  Oliver closes his eyes and locks his mouth when he doesn't like what I try and feed him.... once he figured out he didn't like mama's puree he wouldn't eat anymore!  Elliott took a couple bites too but preferred eating the mashed potatoes by himself.  Oliver played with his, but I don't think any made it into his mouth

For dinner we had: Turkey (with bacon fat and bacon on it), green beans with pearl onions, mushrooms, and bacon, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce (canned) and rolls.  I thought everything was great! No butter or milk products because of the dairy restrictions but all was delicious.

Everyone was super tired and went to bed without a fight.  Brian's loading the dishwasher and I get a few minutes to blog!  I knew I needed to write this post today because my Thanksgiving 2012 post is still in my "drafts" folder that I never finished from last year.  OOPS!  Here are some pics!

Turkey dinner!

Elliott and his mashed potatoes


So yummy!

Mom, I'm not so sure about these

More milk, please!


Turkey dinner puree.... cranberries and all!  They were not a fan


All lined up ready for dinner

Carving the bird

Can't get enough of that smile!

My boys on their first Thanksgiving!

Always trying to get into something!!

Turkey... covered in BACON!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

A Realization

Okay, I will admit that I'm a broken record and probably think about boobs, milk, and babies more than I'd care to admit but that's just my life right now.  I'm still upset about the fact that Elliott quit nursing unexpectedly so I reached out to a La Leche League (LLL) leader in my area for some advice.  I was really hesitant to call because it felt strange just calling someone that you don't know but I figure if her number is on their website, then she expects to get a call every now and then.  

I told her a little about me and after doing so she stopped to clarify and said, "So just to make sure I understood you correctly, you have two year old twins AND nine month old twins?"  I said, "Yep, you got it right."  She said later in the conversation that her husband was listening to her repeat that back and gave her a look like... Wow, seriously?!?

I explained my situation and she sounded very hopeful.  I'm really not optimistic at this point but never say never, right?  She was very positive and upbeat during the whole conversation where I can't say that I was the same.  I don't generally find myself crying on the phone with random strangers but the tears just would not stop when I was actually talking about how upset I was that I couldn't breastfeed my babies.  I mean I "talk" about it here but there's just something so different, and almost embarrassing about having to say it out loud.  She said some things that really made sense about needing to get out more and go to some mommy groups and maybe even a LLL meeting.  I shared my hesitation to go to a group where there would be other moms able to breastfeed their little ones.  She said there would be lots of people there with breastfeeding problems because that's why people show up to those things and how good it would be to share my journey with others and listen to what other women have been through as well.  

The most enlightening part of the conversation was what she said were the top three priorities. 
1.) Feed the babies
2.) Feed the  babies mama's milk
3.) Make feeding the babies easier on mama (breastfeeding)

That list of priorities sounds so simple, yet she was so right.  I'm feeding my babies (obviously... since they are HUGE) and they are getting mostly mama's milk.  She really made me feel like I was doing a good job and made me feel good about my decision to continue to pump.  She said that most women would have thrown in the towel by now after facing this much difficulty.

She referred me to an IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant) that she highly recommended and I don't want to say I haven't tried everything, so I'm going to go see her on Monday.  She may not have any miracle solutions to get Elliott (and even Oliver) to nurse again but who knows, maybe she will.  I don't want to have regrets because it cost too much money to go see the lactation consultant so I'm just going to bite the bullet and do it.  

Tuesday, November 26, 2013


I really haven't done a great job with updates about the girls, but I guess that's what happens when you have two toddlers and two babies.

The girls turned TWO at the beginning of October.  I still find it hard to believe that its been that long already.  I remember the day leading up to my c-section like it was yesterday!  I just kept thinking about what it was going to be like to be a mommy and what my beautiful girls were going to look like.  Today I can't imagine my crazy life without them.

At their two year appointment Char was about 27 pounds and Evy 31 pounds.  Today Char was peeling oranges and giving them to Evy if that tells you anything.... Evy is an adventurous eater and will generally give everything a try whereas Char is a little more picky.

The girls are wearing 24 month and 2T clothing for the most part, but some of their shirts run small so the 3T fits pretty well.  They wear a 7.5 shoe size and a size 4 diaper.  I think I could actually still fit them in 3s but they don't hold enough liquid!  We switched the girls to one nap at 21 months and just pushed it back from 11 a.m. to 1pm so that all four kids can nap at the same time!  Both girls have 16 teeth and no 2 year molars that I know of, but I haven't gone sticking my fingers in their mouths lately either.

Some of the girls' favorite things to watch are: Yo Gabba Gabba, Beauty and the Beast (Beast), Finding Nemo (Fishies), Puss in Boots (Kitties), Rise of the Guardians (Rise) and I think that's about it.  Evy knows all the names of the characters on Gabba and Char knows some of them.  I even got them Foofa sweatshirts, and Brobee pillows for their birthday because they love them so much!

They love to play with blocks, babies (the ones that were their "pretend" brothers), stuffed animals (especially all of their monkeys) some magnets that we just got, mama's phone, their ride on battery powered car, water, buckets, their Kangaroo climber, slide, forks, boxes, potty chairs, brothers' car seats, bead toys, beaded necklaces, and probably lots of other things that I am missing!

They eat a variety of foods, but some more than others!  Breakfast is usually one or more of the following: oatmeal (steel cut, or instant packets), bacon, sausage, scrambled eggs, bagels, fruit, pancakes, and french toast.  Lunch/dinner often includes: mac & cheese, turkey, string cheese, grapes, strawberries,  bananas, peanut butter sandwiches, apple sauce, hard boiled eggs, green beans, broccoli, avocados, chicken, french fries, pizza, rice, and tastes of whatever we are eating.  Lately Evy has been wanting bites of the boys' purees and actually eats them.  I might start "hiding" more veggie purees in their food so that they don't exactly know what they are eating.  They also love to eat their sweets like ice cream, cookies, etc. but who doesn't, right?  After their 2 year well check we switched them to 2% milk per the pediatrician's recommendation.

I just can't believe how much the girls' vocabulary has expanded lately.  I was a little bit worried about Char's vocabulary because she wasn't really putting two words together but just in the last two weeks or so, she has really started to talk... a lot!!  Just today, she found a camera in the kitchen, held it up to her eye and said "Cheese!"  Do you think that means mommy takes too many pictures? Nah.  Evy says anything and everything and is putting together lots and lots of words.  If I have wet hair she says, "Mama take a shower?" or if I have a towel on my head she will say, "Mama towel head?"  I feel like I say, "Yes, Evy" all day long to all of her "questions" that she asks.  She also likes to tell me "Evy owie butt" when she has diaper rash and "Evy fall down" when she... falls down.  Char has recently been bringing me the dog bowl and saying, "mere (more) food!" and "Mere (more) wa-wa" so that I will fill up the dog's food and water.  She is so matter of fact about it too and won't let go until I get those things for the dog.  Its a good thing someone is looking out for him because he is the low man on the totem poll right now.  The girls still have some made up words for stuff that include : Baku (utensil)  Bucky (milk- but they rarely use this one anymore), Yango (yogurt), Mere (more), Foffee (coffee- Char uses this one) and I think that's it.  I'm sure I will miss when they don't use these words anymore.

I never would have thought that two year olds could be helpful, but its totally possible.  Sometimes I run out of wipes mid diaper change and yell for one of the girls to bring me some wipes or "Washies."  Occasionally they will bring me other weird items first, but in the end they find a package of wipes somewhere and bring it to me.  They also put bottles in the sink, find their blankies before bed or naptime, put blocks on their table, go get the remote, bring the boys a toy, grab things that the boys shouldn't eat out of their hands, tell the dog "No!" and to "Sit" find their own shoes, find their own clothes, turn on the TV, and once again, probably more things that my sleepy brain can't remember right now.

I'm pretty sure that if I let the girls stay outside all day long they probably would!  When I say the word "outside" I'm not sure who gets more excited: the girls or the dog!  When its warm out, we just go right out the kitchen door into the back yard.  These days, we go out to take out the trash or get the mail which they get excited about too!  They also love to go places... especially somewhere they can "see amals" (animals) as Evy says.

Our life is pretty crazy right now with two toddlers, 1 mobile baby, and 1 baby that will be mobile very soon.  I will have to add pictures very soon and update ALL of the girls' bear pictures when I get a chance.  They have 24 monthly pictures and one professional photo that I got done with the girls and the bear as their final pic with Mr. Bear.
Evy & Char- two years old!

Friday, November 22, 2013


Last week I was afraid my breastmilk supply was tanking so I took the time to calculate how many ounces I was making per day and I came up with 43 ounces three days in a row!! I was really surprised to get this number and I thought that the first day was a fluke.  The last time I calculated I was getting 38-40 per day consistently and didn't figure I could get it any higher than that.  I was also pumping 7 times per day and these days I'm down to 5.  I just couldn't take getting up in the middle of the night anymore for many reasons.  For one, it was taking time away from sleep, and for two, once I was awake for 30 minutes it was really hard to go back to sleep.

Since the boys are on a lot more solids these days, they are taking a lot less milk.  I actually have about 150 ounces in the freezer and 40-50 ounces in the refrigerator that I probably need to put in the freezer.  The boys drink 3 bottles during the day (before each nap, and before bedtime) and at least one at night.  So 18 ounces each during the day (36 total) plus 8-12 for Oliver and 4 for Elliott at night.  That amounts to roughly 50 ounces per day.  I generally make formula for them at night because its faster and if they don't drink it or spill it then I don't really care that much.  I started freezing some when I was testing out theories about Oliver's digestive issues, so I guess that's where it started.

This is as good as its gonna get!  My goal is to provide mama's milk for 12 months.  Today they are 9 months old so we have 3 to go!  The original plan was to BF Elliott after I quit pumping at a year but since he quit breastfeeding, I don't know what my plan is.  I really do hate pumping but I'm sure I will be a little bit sad to let it go when I finally do decide to stop.


Support from friends and family was crucial in my journey to parenthood.  I connected with other infertiles via forums, blogs, and in person.  Without this emotional support, I know things would have been much more difficult.  When struggling to conceive, it seems like you are the only one out there with these problems, and while I don't wish others would have problems, it was also nice to see that I wasn't alone.

After becoming a mom, I felt like the forums weren't as beneficial anymore because I wasn't in the trenches anymore and people don't always want to "hear" your miracle story and how if you just try "one more time" things may work out for them.  Your perspective changes because you are no longer wondering if you will ever be a mom some day and have just an overall different perspective.

What I'm trying to say is that, while infertility is behind me (sort of) its still something that will always be with me, and I even have a hard time relating to some moms that haven't struggled.  When people just decide they want a baby, go off birth control, and conceive right away, I just can't even begin to comprehend that.  They talk about timing and wanting a "summer baby" or the perfect spacing between their children.  What I think about if/when we decide to try for another is fertility doctors, appointments, shots, a million transvaginal ultrasounds, heartbreak, loss, tears, and a heck of a lot of money.  Also, no guarantee that it will even work and all of that time and money could be for nothing.  Most people just don't "get" that.

I started a group on FB to connect with others that face the same issues when parenting after infertility issues.  Some had success with treatments, some adopted, and others used surrogacy to carry their miracle babies to term.  If you feel like you are in the same boat, I would love to add you to the group! You can leave a comment with your e-mail and I will give you a link to the group or you can search Pregnant/Parenting after Infertility.

As a side note, my boys are 9 months old today!!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

37+2 on the outside!

I'm about a week late, but as of Nov. 10th, the boys were 37 weeks and 2 days on the outside!  I'm so proud that I carried them that long and I can't believe they have been on the "outside" for that long as well.  I have two almost 9 month old baby boys that are learning and changing every single day.  I can't believe how much they change before my eyes.  Just today, I noticed a tooth that's coming through Oliver's gums!  It hasn't broken through yet, but I can see it.  I was starting to think he was going to be a year before he had teeth.  Oliver also ate a teething biscuit (baby  mum mum) all by himself today.  I handed it to him and he actually put it in his mouth and took a few bites!! (More like let it dissolve but hey, I will take what I can get.)
Oliver eating his baby mum mum

Does Elliott look HUGE or is it just me?

Elliott's two teeth! (He got them 1 day before he turned 8 months!)

Friday, November 15, 2013


Feeding my kids healthy food is a priority for me, so I typically make their baby food.  (Its not to say that I don't give my girls french fries.... because I do that too.)

I loaded the pictures from an app that syncs my phone pictures right to google, so they are in reverse order and I don't know how to fix that... but they are still here!  

I find that its easier to make the food in big batches so that I can just pull it all out of the freezer when needed.  I spent probably two hours making food last Sunday night and it should last for a while.  I made peaches, peas, green beans, sweet potatoes, and spinach.  I usually mix the veggies with a mashed banana and some oatmeal or mixed grain cereal depending on what meal its for.  I do have some store bought fruit as well, but I got that when I was trying to just get Oliver to eat something.  I plan to make some more pureed fruit next time!  

I have a Baby Breeza, which works well but it quit working so I had to improvise.  This time I used a big bowl to put the food in and then just popped it in the microwave to steam it.  I then blended it up in my Ninja blender and use the Infantino Squeeze station to put it into pouches.  I could use the ice cube trays that have lids on them, but I find that I can't make as much at one time because once those are full, I have to wait for them to freeze before I can fill them again.  The pouches are easy to pull out of the freezer, warm up, and put in a bowl for the boys too.  I could make pouches for the girls as well, but I just haven't gotten around to doing that yet!!

I'm probably crazy for not wanting to buy baby food already made, but I don't know what "peach puree concentrate" is.  I like to know what goes into it, so the only way to do that is to make it myself!  

Our ice maker broke, so I use that to put all of my pouches in.  On the right there is extra breastmilk that's not dairy/soy free and ice cream that's just begging to be eaten!!

Here's my 32 pouches.  I had carrots ready to go as well, but I ran out of pouches!

This is what the pouches come in.  I think the pack of 50 is around $10

The Ninja!

I used a glass bowl to cook the veggies in

This is the Squeeze Station.  Its actually super easy to use and clean! I think it was about $25.