Thursday, January 20, 2011

4 weeks, where did you go?

I know everyone says it..but wow does time fly by once those babies come out! It felt like the first week CRAWLED since we slept zero out of 24 hours most of those days, but now all of a sudden, our preemie babies look like full term babies with their chubby bellies and REALLY chubby chipmunk cheeks. And I can actually fall asleep without worrying they will stop breathing (although still does cross my mind).

1 month stats from drs appt!

We got our first shots - Hep B. Everyone did good...but no fun to watch our little babes get stuck and get red in the face!

Quinn, the butterball - 8.3 lbs / 20 1/4 inches

Harper, working to catch up - 6.5 lbs / 19 1/2 inches

Gracie, holding her own - 7.7 lbs / 20 inches

What has happened this first month? So much and so little all at the same time! Lots of sleepy cuddles and lots and lots of feedings and diaper changes. "The Happiest Baby on the Block" WORKS -- swaddle, suck, swing, shushing and stomach = three happy babies! Our first story time with mama (all still able to fit on my lap at once!) Lots of more eye contact and peepers are open way more and seem much more alert. Working on belly time (nobody really likes it) and it's hard to find the time to be on our belly with three bellies to feed! And maybe the best moments of them all.. the quiet time of rocking or walking in the dark hours or recognizing voices and calming down and just the way those little bodies still feel so small and cuddly on our chests. So we always remember, here is a little note to these three miracles...since I may never get around to that baby book...

Dear Quinn, Harper & Gracie,

What happened the first month of your lives??? Well, as I remember it, here are some may remember it different, but there may be a reason we don't remember our days as a newborn..because you may really think your parents don't know anything. :)

From day one (and actually in the womb) you guys know music!  You all love noise and will calm down to rocking, hushing and humming. I like to think we are steering you to good music...current nighttime play list includes some of the following - you have heard these songs in the womb and still do - maybe when you are older you will love these???

- Elton John (sorry,mama's fav) "Your Song" "Rocket Man" "Captain Fantastic" "Candle in the Wind"
- Paul Simon - "Slip Sliding Away"
- Jimmy Buffet " Little Miss Magic"
- Sonny & Cher " I Got You Babe"
- Kenny Loggins "Chains of Love"
- Dixie Chicks "God Speed"
- Indigo Girls " Mona Lisa and Madhatters"
- Grateful Dead "Ripple" "Box of Rain"
- Jack Johnson "Constellations" "Banana Pancakes"
- Ben Harper "When you Dream"
And our special songs.. "The Mighty Quinn" by Bob Dylan and "Gracie Girl" by Ben Folds (Harper, we are working on a song.. maybe you will be our writer... as in, Harper Lee...)

Quinn - you look JUST like your daddy. I love it. My heart could not dance more when I look at you and see TWO boys I love :) You are a cuddler and such a boy all at the same time. You started out slow with eating, but you are my best nurser. You take eating slow and steady - but you are up to almost 4 oz and must be just a growing boy because you have been more hungry lately.You still fuss at night and want to be rocked, but overall you are very calm and when you lay between your sisters crying, you stay so relaxed and have a look like, "what's the big deal??" I love staring at your face when you sleep in my arms - you look so handsome with all of your little faces.. smiles, grunty old man faces and such sweet little lip puckers. You make the sweetest little mmm noises when you eat - it makes my heart melt. You and daddy like to go in the bedroom and watch football when the girls stay out in the living room watching The Bachelor. You may not be a mama's boy yet..but I am the boy's mama, and wow do I like you! (Even though you pee all over everything from all of your outfits, to blankets, to the blinds behind the changing table :)

Harper - you are SUCH a funny baby. You of course started out the smallest, but wow are you mighty. You are so strong and when you lay on your back sometimes I think you are just about ready to roll on over. You look a little bit like your Grandma Richards, who you are named after. When you and Grandma talk you always look up at her and really listen. Sometimes I think you are smarter than us all.   You are the best sleeper once asleep, but when you are hungry or want held, WATCH OUT.. you can let those lungs rip and your whole sad face cries. I really can't stand to see you cry. The other day you were choking on your spit up and it was my first really afraid moment as a were OK - but I wasn't :( I HATED seeing you scared! On, the flip side..your little side smile makes me smile. You have been our middle of the night alarm clock. When you are upset, I love to apply the "5 S's" because it works like a charm with you! You are very alert and like to look around rather than cuddle up on somebody's chest. I savor when you do cuddle up on me with your head sideways. Your perfect little cheeks get so red from laying on my chest. My favorite is waking you up and kissing your soft, full mooshy cheeks -- can I always kiss your cheeks?

Gracie - you are my sugarpie. You are everything a little girl just looks like you were born in pink and purple and you have long curly eyelashes. You cry to be held and oh my, do you ever love cuddling on your papa's chest or shoulder. You are starting to look more and more like your daddy with your dark features. You love being read to or you will listen to silly made up stories and fall asleep. You smile a lot and are most content in someones arms. You eat like a champ and are always done before everybody else! And Miss girly as you literally poop all day, everyday. Your blowouts have been comic relief for those middle of the night feedings more than once. You love your paci and seem to make out with it when you are getting hungry. "Mmmm rrrr mmmm" -- it's very funny :) You were really fussy one night and we had been up since 5 am when the sun started to come up.. I was getting really tired & frustrated, but then we went and laid on the couch together and I saw your profile.. it was the SAME profile we saw at every ultrasound!! It made me cry and I was thankful in that moment for the miracle of you no matter what time it was!
What do we do all day??

Well...last night after the 8 pm feeding, mama pumps and then holds babies until 10 when I "go to bed". Daddy & Grandma do the 11 pm feeding and try to feed a little more so your bellies start to get ready to sleep longer (any day now would be fine..:) ) Mama and Grandma up at 2 am, warm bottles and either wake babies or take the hungriest hippos first.. a typical wake,feed,burp,change,re-swaddle takes 1 1/2 hours w/ two hands on deck - mama pumps,again.. Grandma normally stays up to rock the lucky baby she has. Mama and Papa up at 5 am for feeding, run into packnplay because so tired. mama pumps again. Rock or walk fussy baby in the dark and although exhausted, one of my favorite moments.  Daddy up at 7:45 am to get bottles going, and 8 am feeding starts. One baby breastfeeds while mama is walking dead, pumps again. Other two bottles. If lucky, back for a nap. 11 am feeding, same all over again. Done by 12:30. Bottles, laundry, holding babies. We love Grandma for helping with all of this. Mama worries about tummy time.. when will we do it? Maybe a Starbucks run while running to get formula. Back to feed,nurse,pump for 2 pm. Fussy and ALL ready to eat. Grandma makes bottles. Here is the scene - Me, pumping and holding Gracie on my lap and swaying her on my lap. Harper in my right arm hovering over Gracie and swinging in my arm. Left arm bouncing Quinn in boppy lounger..AND all are quiet = success. Done eating by 3:30. Cuddle babies. Pump. Hope Daddy makes it home for 5 pm feeding. On 3rd or 4th outfits for the day. Oh, that dang tummy time. Quick, sneak tummy time in before feeding. Everyone cries..nobody likes being tested for head and neck abilities. 5 pm feeding..smooth today, Daddy is home -- big snowstorm, yeah!! Done by 6 because 3 get fed at once! Change diapers. Cuddle baby..growth spurts..feed somebody again an hour later (mastering the art of cluster feeding) update blog..time to pump...and the beat goes on..(And most nights a warm dinner is on the way -- THANK YOU FAMILY & FRIENDS for feeding us because otherwise it may not get done!!) Here are some new pics!!

Gracie and Quinn showing off with Daddy

Harper and Daddy

Hanging out with Grandma

Our first storytime..everyone loved it

It's a sleepy job being this Gracie-pie cute

Harper can't get close enough.. LOVE IT!

Gracie, I'm your big brother..I'll make it better!
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