Monday, November 21

Password Protection Question

Is there any way to password protect some entries on blogger, but to keep most of the blog non-password protected?

Saturday, November 19

Back to Work

Today is November 19th & this is post 17 for the month, so I'm not too doing too badly with this whole NoBloPoMo thing.

I go back to work in exactly 1 month.  I'm terrified & dreading it.  But I'm also looking forward to meeting my class.  Apparently they're a little crazy.  It's going to be a huge transition & I'm going to be so much more exhausted.  It will be a song & dance of work-kids-grad class (my last class before the practicums so I can finally have my MEd!).  I think the word will be exhausting.  But you can do anything for 5 months, right?

We've been interviewing perspective nannies.  We've met 2, we have 2 more lined up.

The first one, J, was just "meh".  I really liked her when we met and she has a cutie 2 year old she could bring to play with Colby sometimes.  And we were actually ready to offer her the position, but after thinking about it for a little more I just started to feel uneasy about her.  I'm not sure what it was/is exactly, but something tells me she's just not a good fit for us.

Then we met with another girl, S.  I really, really liked her.  She seems like a really great fit.  She's younger than me (I'm starting to feel really old lately) without her own kids, but her personality & how much Colby liked her just seemed right.  So I would totally have offered her the position, but I want to see what all of our options are.

So we'll meet with M & A on Monday and decide from there.  I'm liking our prospects.  It makes me feel a little better about going back to work.

I'm still a little (a lot) scared about how Colby especially is going to handle the transition.  He's such a Mama's boy & I don't want him to feel abandoned.  (Just thinking that makes my heart ache a bit)  Today we were at Johnny's aunt's house and I snuck upstairs to pump.  About 10 minutes in Johnny & Colby popped in because Colby went up to Johnny with "a single tear" and said sadly "Dada, I no see Mama..."  So I'm really worried about him.

And the girls are Mama's girls too.  Zoe just gives this look that lets you know she needs me right then.  It's such a sad look and she will find me across the room.   And I don't want to lose the closeness and the bond that we have.

And in addition to being worried about them, I'm worried about someone seeing the separation anxiety for what it is and being willing to work through the crazy transition because there are apt to be some awful days.

So, one more month with my amazing, beautiful, perfect children.

I know I can be a good mom through all of this.  And I know I've done it before, but it's still so, so hard.

Friday, November 18

Sharing responsibilities... does that actually happen?

From my calculations, the girls are 178 days old.

I have been getting up to pump every 3-4 hours during the night for 178 nights.  (Though usually much more frequently with the girls wake up schedule.)

Zoe spent 11 days in the NICU.

Sydney spent 13 days in the NICU.

So I have had two babies in my house for 165 nights.

(Though if we're being technical they spent 2 nights with my parents.)

So for arguments sake, I have done every single night time feeding/diaper change/soothing for 163 nights.

Times two babies.

And I have not slept more than 4 hours in a row for 178 days.

And I have not slept a full night since at least March.

And I have not slept more than probably 3 full nights back-to-back since before Colby was born.

(He STILL wakes up 2-3 times a night begging for water.)

Johnny, on the other hand, was in charge a total of 2 "Colby nights" in the beginning + the time I was on bedrest in the hospital. (I was in the hospital 20 days)

So, you can imagine my annoyance when he was getting ready to go to a comedy show tonight (I was getting ready to put the 3 kiddos to bed) and sarcastically said "You know the best part?  I'll probably get home at like 3am and you'll still wake me up at 7!"

Thursday, November 17

World Prematurity Day

With World Prematurity Day upon us, I don't even know what to think or say.

Our lives have lived and breathed prematurity since that day I was placed on bedrest at 23.2 weeks with the boys.  At that point, we hoped and prayed for as much time as possible, but no one thought we would make it until 40 weeks.  It was a waiting game of when the boys would enter our lives.  We all just hoped it wouldn't be too soon.

And it was and wasn't.

And since that day, prematurity has ruled our lives.

So I feel like I should say more, but instead for now I can only think how thankful I am for my 4 wonderful, preemie miracles.

They're my heroes.

They're the strongest people I know.

Monday, November 14

I've been bitten

So... my babies are 11 days shy of 6 months.

They're adorable & squishy & I love them to death.

I visited a friend who just had a baby yesterday.

And I decided I want another baby.

Soon.  :)

It's not going to happen for awhile, but officially bit by the baby bug again.

Sunday, November 13

On being happy...

When there is calm throughout the day, everyone is peaceful and happy, I often think that I'm the happiest person in the world.

How could I not when I look at their faces?

And when Colby's talking up a storm

Or the girls are rolling around on the floor

Or smiling up at me

I often think I'm the luckiest person in the world.

When I have these thoughts, I often feel guilty.  How can I feel like I'm the happiest or the luckiest when I can only parent and hug 3/4 of my children?

So, I might be happy.  Colby, Sydney, and Zoe are amazing and cute and funny.  They make the world go round.

But the happiest person?  I'm not sure it's possible.

Or I might be lucky.  Colby is defying all the odds of a 27 week old baby who spent 2 weeks on a ventilator.

 I often forget that the girls were even premature, or that their lives were in the balance at 27 weeks.

But the luckiest person?  Obviously we'd be luckier if we had brought two babies home from the NICU 2 years ago.

Luckier still if they had been born full term, or it bedrest had never happened, or... well, the list goes on and on.

It seems it's all a matter of perspective I guess.

I'm not saying that I can't be happy or feel lucky, because life is pretty amazing most of the time, but I constantly have a nagging thought in the back of my head:

Life can never be perfect.

And yes, I know, life isn't perfect for anyone.  But I have already experienced the best of life.  It was back when I was finally pregnant with the boys.

Happy.  Naive.  

Thinking I would be one of the few to make it to 40 weeks with twins.  Because I never considered anything else.  

Never did I dream I'd be having two of the less-than-1% of babies born before 28 weeks.  Never did I dream I'd be saying goodbye to my first son at only 2 days old.  Never did I think I would be here.  

That's when life was best.  When I didn't know- and I really thought that perfection was possible.  Now it's not bad by any stretch of the imagination.  We find joy in the big and the little.  Giggles light up the mornings and cuddles settle us in for the night.  We laugh and love and enjoy the amazing little beings we have.  

But now we know.  We're stronger for it.  We're more cautious.

But we're changed and a bit broken. 

And happiness continues to be possible.  But I'm afraid that I'll only forever be struggling to be as happy as I once was.

But it won't happen, because part of my heart is missing and broken.

Gone when those monitors stopped beeping.

Wedding Weekend

I'm just a little off from posting every day, but this is still more than I normally would and that's the point right?  :)


This weekend we headed down to a friend's wedding on Friday night. (11-11-11)  Like an idiot I didn't get any pictures, but she looked absolutely beautiful (Hi Crystal!).  It was a wedding where I didn't really know anyone at all, but it was also one of such an amazing couple & such a great friend that it didn't really matter.  Being there for them was enough.

If you've seen 27 Dresses, there is a point where one of the characters says something about watching the groom when the bride walks in. 

"You know how the bride makes her entrance and everybody turns to look at her? That’s when I look at the groom. Cause his face says it all you know? The pure love there."

Since I've seen that movie, I've started doing that- watching the groom when everyone else watches the bride make her entrance.  It's true- the face of the groom when the bride walks in says everything.  

And Ryan's said it all on Friday.  

It's been interesting to be on the outside of Crystal & Ryan's relationship.  I don't see Crystal very much (AT ALL) but I still love her to death.  And it's interesting because I've known Ryan longer than I've known Crystal.  Crystal and I met in 5th grade, but Ryan went to school with me from the beginning of time.  And Ryan's always been someone I've liked, so I love that Crystal & he are so happy.

But the point that I think I decided that I really liked Crystal & Ryan together was when Connor died.  At that point I hadn't seen Crystal in a while.  She had visited me on bedrest in the hospital (with her mom & brother- I love her family) but before that we'd kept in touch but never managed to see each other as much as we wanted.  And it might have actually been when I was on bedrest that I learned that she and Ryan had started dating... 

And I hadn't seen Ryan since I think high school.  But they were both there and it meant so much.  They could have easily skipped out, or Ryan could have said 'thanks but not thanks, I'm not going' because to him I was just some random person from school.  

But they didn't & it meant the world to me.  Everyone said that they would be there for us, but Crystal & Ryan really were.  (And Crystal was my first friend to visit Colby when he was only a week or so old!  She sat in his room with me for hours just staring at the isolette with me.  We could hardly even lift the blanket that blocked the light from him, so she could hardly even see him.   At that point we didn't really know if he would live or die, but she sat there with me.  She never complained or even seemed annoyed or bored with it.  And it meant so very much.

So with that, I'm so very happy for Mr. & Mrs. Sherman.  I love you both!  :)

Thursday, November 10

Randoms Again

So I'm failing at this NoBloPoMo thing.  Missing two days isn't so bad though, is it?

Today we're on to randomness because I can't think straight I'm so tired...

  • Johnny worked til 9 & it was rainy so it was a crazy day.  Colby just wanted to go outside (because it has been ridiculously beautiful the last few days and we have spent every moment outside that we could) but we couldn't so he was just off the wall.  Then he didn't nap despite my trying to get him to nap for 2.5 hours.  So he was just plain crazy (cute) all evening.
  • We (and by "we", I mean "I" because Johnny has still never helped with night time routine or night wakings.  Period.)  finally, finally, finally have the kids in a bedtime routine that has them all in bed and sleeping by 8:30pm most nights.  It's not perfect... the girls usually still wake up just a few hours later (if Sydney doesn't start moving around sooner), the girls are still in their Rock n Plays (they're transitioning to their cribs finally, but we're going away this weekend for a wedding so I decided not to push the whole routine when it would just be lost this weekend anyways), & Colby is still in our bed.  BUT I feel like I have the whole night when I come downstairs at 8:30 rather than 10:30 or 11.  
  • The girls are just growing up so fast it's making me a wee bit sad.  So much of life is picking which fire to put out next (which crying child to tend to, which disaster to avert, etc.) that I feel like I'm not just enjoying them enough.  Don't get me wrong- I spend every waking (and sleeping) moment with them & Colby all day every day.  But it's just not the same as when it was just me and Colby and I could pick him up and hold him and cuddle him all day long.  
  • Is it crazy that I'm already thinking about wanting baby #5?  (Don't tell Johnny, he might completely go crazy for that one!) (And yes, I know this one doesn't really make sense when I'm talking about feeling like I'm not enjoying the girls enough...)
  • Having 3 kids seems easier than having 1.  Is that crazy?  I remember with Colby I was lucky if I got out of my PJs most days.  Now I get all three dressed and fed & out the door most days.  Usually it's just for a walk around the development, but sometimes it's shopping or to visit or for appointments.  And I usually shower every day(!!!!).  Granted it's an orchestration of baths & then setting kids up in safe places while I shower, but I still do it.  The only difference, having 3 kids seems more like a routine & battle plan, while having just Colby was much more go-with-the-flow.  
  • I go back to school in mid-December.  We're still working on child care... I'm trying to find someone amazing who will cost us less than my paycheck.  And as a teacher, I don't make much.  Therefore, we're looking for someone amazing who basically wants to work for minimum wage.
  • And on top of all that, I have to start a grad class in January.  So it will be work, class, 3 kids.  The thought terrifies me.

Tuesday, November 8

Play Challenge: 7

So we're a little off on our play days, but we'll get them all in!

Day 7's challenge was "Mega Floor Doodles"

I thought Colby would have a blast with this one.  We picked up some big art paper at Target today.  I had been looking for a roll of art paper, but we were out of lucky, so instead I taped 12 pieces of paper into a giant rectangle on the floor.  I did this while he was napping & set out crayons, colored pencils (a random buy he asked for at Target, and he never asks for anything while shopping so I went with it), pencils, and stamps.

When he woke up from his nap his eyes lit up to see the paper and all of the materials.  He usually loves to draw and color so I was excited.  Unfortunately it kind of fizzled out after that.  We traced his feet and drew a few shapes, but he just wasn't really that into it.

Perhaps we'll try another day...

Excuse the mega-bed-head.   Like I said, he just woke up.

Sunday, November 6

2 years

So I'm a little behind on the play days.  Yesterday we were supposed to make playdough, but it was a busy day, so we'll get to that this week.

Anyways, yesterday was a pretty big day around these parts.

Yesterday was November 5th.

2 years ago Colby came home from the hospital.

Ventilators.  CPAPs.  Cannulas.  Monitors.  Blood transfusions.  IVs.  Antibiotics.  Blood gas readings.  Metabolic Acidosis.  PDA.  PFO.  Apnea.  Bradychardia.  Feeding tubes.  Incubators.  Isolettes.  O2 Saturation.  Heel pricks.  

They all didn't matter anymore.

 Because Colby was home.

healthy.  happy.  

Some days I think that this milestone is bigger than his birthday.

2 years home called for a celebration, don't you think?

though i tend to think every day is a celebration

So while Colby was out with Daddy, I ran out and picked up a balloon, blocks, and a game.

Because I would do anything to make him smile.

And his "oh, wow, mama!" when he saw the balloon could melt my heart.

And I was reminded again why I love to be a Mama.

Why I'm so lucky to have him.

And why my heart aches for what's lost.

Because two miracles were born in July.

But I'm only lucky enough to cuddle one.

To celebrate with one.

To hug one.

To have one call me Mama.

Though I love two.

Saturday, November 5

If I hated someone...

Today I was in the hospital for a hematology check. 
(Consensus is that clot is probably gone.)
((I don't even care.))

Anyways, who do we pass but Dr. C.
My questionable high risk from the boys' pregnancy.
The one who put me on bedrest.
Because babies at 23 weeks mean "no babies".
The one who never visited during the month I was laid up wondering if my babies would live.
The one who never visited when the boys were born at 27 weeks.
The one who never visited when one of my babies didn't live.

Yeah, that guy.

Anyways, I always say that I don't hate anyone.

But if I did hate someone, it would be that guy.

Friday, November 4

Play Challenge: 4


Today's challenge was Pretend Islands!  Just like it sounds, you were to use household objects to create pretend islands to play on & jump to & off of & around.  Pillows were the likely object, but we're lacking in the throw pillow department, so instead Colby helped me separate the foam floor mat.  We threw them around the downstairs & then we began island hopping!

Colby lives life dangerously and spent some time in the "water".

Thursday, November 3

Play Challenge: 3

When I started this challenge I told Johnny that it was meant to only use standard things you would have at home.  Johnny jokingly asked, "If we don't have the items needed, does that mean we have a bad house?"  I said yes and we laughed it off.

Enter Challenge Day 3.  We needed a tub of blocks to build towers and create cool things.  Now we have blocks, but we don't have a ton of any one kind.  Instead we have 10 of the infamous $80 blocks (did I ever mention those here?), a set of Little People blocks, and then random small sets of pop blocks, duplos, stacking blocks, etc.  Not enough of any one kind to make anything cool.

And so, Day 3 has been postponed.  

We'll get a bucket of duplos and come back to it.

Wednesday, November 2

Play Challenge: 2

Today's challenge was to build a fort.

After hitting myself on the side of the head for not thinking of building a fort sooner (seriously, we did it all the time growing up and it's so easy!) I was super excited to start some fort construction with Colby.

I decided to wait until after nap time so that everyone would be at their happiest because I knew it would involve leaving the girls a to lounge a bit as we constructed.  The only thing I grabbed from out of the room was a few sheets from the pile of unfolded laundry upstairs.  Otherwise the blankets and supports were already in the living room.

And ta da!

Colby loved it!  And I thought it was pretty neat to.  We had few entrances and even added the tunnel for access.  Colby thought it was funny when I got in the fort by sliding in the tunnel.  :)

All in all, a huge success... until Colby decided to try to walk on top of the fort.  Then playtime was over.

Busy time of year

This time of year- late October/early November has been pretty eventful for Johnny & I the past few years.

2007: We were smack dab in the middle of infertility testing.  We were doing ultrasounds, blood work, and the HSG.  (Uggh)

2008: We found out we were pregnant from our 3rd IUI cycle only to have it end in miscarriage in early November.

2009: We were celebrating Colby's first Halloween in the NICU, I was still dealing with the loss of Connor (and still am),  and we were able to welcome Colby home days later.

2010: We were celebrating our newest pregnancy , celebrating Colby's one-year-home-iversary, and awaiting the ultrasound that would reveal twins: round 2.

2011: Finally things seem to be settling down a bit in life.  :)  But it's pretty great.

Tuesday, November 1

Play Challenge: 1

To make my life more challenging, I'm going to try to partake in the 30 Days to Hands on Play challenge presented on hands on : as we grow & The Imagination Tree.

Because I need to do something else.


But I'm really excited about this one because I have just over a month left home with the 3 kiddos & I don't want to regret not spending every second with them that I can.  I'm going to focus more on Colby simply because he "plays" and it's a toddler activity thing, but I'm going to really try to get at least 15 minutes of one-one-one attention with each of the girls as well.

So to start the challenge, Day 1's task is to complete a mission statement and think about your child's likes and dislikes.

Mine is something like: I hope to focus more on engaging Colby, Sydney, and Zoe more in what interests them without worrying about the little things (cleaning, laundry, etc.).  I also hope to discover new things that really grab Colby's attention and new ways to play together.

Colby's Likes
- trucks, cars, trains-- things with wheels
- puzzles
- dancing
- cooking & baking
- catching & throwing balls
- being outside
- water (shower, bath, pool, puddles)
- painting

NaBloPoMo: 1

The first question for this NaBloPoMo is simply, what is my favorite thing about writing?

Everyone else.

I only really like writing on a blog... which is why I have several.  I usually hate my handwriting so I like typing things out better.  In all seriousness, blogging is a neat way to journal while kind of scrapbooking at the same time.

I started back when Johnny and I were first trying to start a family.  I guess techinally we were about a year in, but it still feels like forever ago.  In the beginning we were keeping our fertility issues to ourselves simply to protect from prodding questions and having to share negatives with our families.  So I loved writing because I found this little segment of the world that was facing the exact same things I was.  It was so interesting when I first realized that there were other blogs out there about infertility and suddenly I felt like this whole world had opened up.  People got "it".  So I fell in love with blogging then.  I never really considered myself "good" or considered it a hobby, though.  Instead writing was simply a way to share our journey.

Then we got pregnant, went on bed rest, had the boys, Connor died, we faced the NICU, and life continued on.  Writing continued to be a way to share the journey.  It also became a way to work through my... life.  If I look back through the vaults, I probably have about another 200 or so started drafts on my blog.  Usually they're issues or thoughts that came to me late at night, or in the shower, or while listening to the beeping in the NICU, or while rocking the girls to sleep.  I'd start writing to work through whatever I was thinking about.  Sometimes I'd feel better.  Sometimes I'd quit writing.  Sometimes I'd come back later and finish.  And usually if I did manage to post, there was someone out there who understood.

So I guess my favorite thing is simply the community that I've found.

Oh, and sharing my cuter than cute kids.

Woody, Buzz, & Jessie.
Poor Sydney- first Halloween and already dressed as a boy.

A cuter picture is forthcoming- Halloween was postponed around here until Sunday.  
Because towns have the power to do that.


So I signed up for BlogHer's NaBloPoMo on a whim.  I'm not sure why... I guess I need something else on my already overloaded plate?  Just for fun I guess... but if my "30 Day Photo Challenge" on facebook is any indication, I might not finish.  (I only did 2 of the 30 days of photos and then I was on bedrest with oodles of time.)

NaBloPoMo 2011

So, follow along or sign up.  It should be interesting.  (The other posts, not mine... I'm still a little confused.  As in I'm having a hard time remembering where I found the bloglist...)

happy november