Thursday, March 31, 2011

Not Ready -6 Months!

Some how I ended up with tons of hats and no sun to speak of, so I thought I'd at least make them wear one before they outgrow it.

I'm not sure why but this picture made me laugh hysterically!

All ready for noms with their bibs made by aunt Amber and painted by cousin Samantha!

We gave it a go and I think they are not ready for solids yet. I guess their reactions were pretty typical but the fact that they just don't seem interested is why I'm waiting it out another month. If they had gobbled it up then I would have proceeded otherwise. We'll try again at 7 months.

So the boys hair is starting to catch up to their eyebrows. For a while I thought they might go bald as their heads kept getting bigger and no new hair. It's getting much thicker up top and as the pictures show their hair is pretty dark but I think it will be a lighter brown than mine (my hair is practically black).

They had already had two spoonfuls before this and most was spit out but Eli on the third try actually ate something!




Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Before Moving on to Solids

Wish I could see that beautiful smile

Before we get started on solids I'd like to write about how breastfeeding is going. It has been a roller coaster. You know the first half from my other updates and the second half is just as crazy. I won't go into details unless you want to read an entry as long as a book. It seems like every few weeks something changes. It's an interesting dynamic figuring out rotation, partial feeds, accommodating growth spurts, etc, etc. So I'll just update you on what works NOW.

Don't ask me how I could stand to do it for so long, but I pumped religiously for 3 months (7-8 x a day) and then a few times a day for another month. I'm finding out that that is much longer than most other mom's have done. I'll be the first one to admit it, I'm the crazy one!

First off, everyone still nurses and we still supplement with formula. I always nurse each boy first and then offer them some formula. Although, Eli, about a month ago decided he doesn't like formula anymore. Actually if I try to offer it to him he gags, so he only nurses. I don't blame him though, have you ever tasted the stuff? it's nasty! Breast milk is so much more palatable, it tastes kind of like sweet rice milk. Yes, obviously I admit to tasting it, don't be offended, everybody try's it (Like peeing in the shower, no one admits to it but everyone does it).

So Eli gets one whole boob and Caleb and Thomas split the other. The first boy drinks less formula than the second one, but on average 0-4oz per boy. We waste A LOT of formula in the process, but it doesn't bother me as much as when breast milk would go to waste, a few times I just saved it for next time even though you are not supposed to. It would almost bring a tear to my eye to pour un-drank breast milk down the drain, a lot of pain and suffering went into getting as much as possible out!

My eating habits are less than desired. I'm always hungry and along with the boys I too eat every 3 hours. Let me just say it's EXHAUSTING! Finding something to stuff my face with that often gets old and tired fast. Of course if I could go out to eat every time that would be a different story. It will be nice to eat like a normal person someday. I'm glad I kept a 10lbs pre-preg weight buffer because if I have a bad week of not eating enough I'll drop a pound or two and that lets me know I need to do better the next week.

We just went to a WIC appointment yesterday and they lowered the amount of formula we get because we don't use as much as they thought we would (thank God we don't pay for this stuff, it's $15 a can!). They did, however, increase my food package, yay! I get so much tuna fish that I'm slightly worried about mercury poisoning, I think I'll switch to the salmon for a while. The boys got measured and are all 24inches long (17 inches at birth, an increase of 7in). They were also weighed and they are keeping with the same pattern as when they were born.

Caleb 13lbs 11oz
Eli 13lbs 10oz
Thomas 13lbs 15oz

Poor Caleb, every one assumes he's the biggest. Unlike his brothers that have football shaped heads, his is round. And Eli really holds his weight well, he seems so much smaller than his brothers but he is only an ounce lighter than Caleb. Thomas maintains his "Thomas the tank" status, keeping a nice lead ahead of his bro's.

I'm very excited about starting solids. The boys still don't really seem interested but I'm giving it a try anyway. I've got the food (rice cereal since it's pretty much benign), bib's and date picked out. I just need to pull out the other two high chairs out of their boxes.

I relish every milestone and don't want to take anything for granted since these might me my only babies : )

There are drawbacks to being fully breastfed. Since the boys were preemies they are required to take 0.5cc's of this really nasty iron/vitamin sludge once a day. Caleb and Thomas get it diluted in their bottles so it doesn't taste as bad but Eli has to take it like a man.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Our Non Schedule Schedule

His pants are fitting more like capris

They'll always have each other to lean on.

Bad swaddle fail. You'll notice our latest addition, owl swing bit the dust!

The grandparents just left so it's back to juggling babies by myself again! Family is always streaming in so I can always look forward to getting some relief in the near future. My mom and sister are next in line, yay! It's especially stressful when feeding babies and the others are whining/crying to be held or played with. The boys are starting to out grow their baby einstein and prefer sitting in their high chair, bumbo's and jumping activity chair (I wish I had another one but my house is already about to explode with baby gear).

Our Non Schedule

Unlike most triplet households we do not follow a written schedule. It works for most, but I felt too stressed out about "staying on schedule." Having never had children before I initially thought the world would implode if I didn't keep a strict schedule. I was relieved when this didn't happen. We stopped the every three hour schedule at 3 months (see my life in 3 hrs post).

I didn't like it once I had to wake babies up to eat. Why would you ever wake up a baby! A few times the babies let us oversleep and that was a VERY nice treat! This let us know that they were capable of longer stretches of sleep. This also made me worry that I was overfeeding them. Another reason I ditched the schedule was because the babies were always up at the same time and asleep at the same time. So I was hoping to get more one on one time with each boy (although this means less down time for me).

Even though we don't have a written schedule that doesn't mean I don't run a tight ship. We keep a strict "Eat, Play, and Sleep" schedule. The Eat and Sleep portion lasts 1 hour to 1.5 hours. In that window if anyone shows any signs of crankyness it's off to another nap. I have them eat the minute they wake up so that nobody becomes dependent on having a boob or bottle in their mouth to fall asleep.

So here is the funny thing, I think the 3 hr NICU schedule is so ingrained in them that on their own they reverted back to it. For the most part, one wakes up right after the other every three hours to eat. A few times a week, however, one or more boys will nap for like 5hrs and it's glorious! I can get so much done and a few times I didn't know what to do with the spare time.

At night it's a little different. They are all asleep by 9pm and when the first one wakes, after about 4-5hrs, we wake up the others too and feed them all at once. Then back to bed till 7am.

Here's something else that's funny, we still swaddle even though they are almost 6 months old! They are too big to swaddle their legs so we only swaddle their upper body. Most kids outgrow this within the first couple of months so I'm wondering how long we are going to have to keep this up! I wonder if it's their way of making up for their shortened time in the womb? Anyways, they are getting really strong and can break out of a swaddle a lot easier, a swaddle fail almost always leads to baby waking up : (

Bobble head Thomas

Thomas on the boys new favorite toy

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Momma Makeover

The boys are practicing their teenage heart throb poses

Bible Cat: all he needs to lay his head down is a shot of whiskey and some scripture

A friend of mine convinced me to apply for a local mommy makeover contest. If you win you get a bunch of stuff like spa treatments, a hotel room for a night, dinner, and some other stuff I can't remember. I doubt I'll win it since I never win anything, of course besides hitting the fertility jackpot. But what the heck, maybe?

Now I'm not trying to throw myself a pitty party but I do have to sound convincing so here are my answers to their questions:

What is/are the most rewarding aspect(s) of being a mother?

Seeing all the little accomplishments your baby makes. It's so exciting to see your baby smile or coo or laugh for the first time. Before I was a mother others would tell me about their babies and I honestly just didn't get how exciting it was. I would just think, "aren't babies supposed to smile at that age?" (OK so I had to come up with something to say. While what I wrote is true, I can't really pinpoint this one)

What is/are the most challenging aspect(s) of being a mother?

Knowing your decisions are what's best for your baby. To vaccinate or not to vaccinate. Cloth diapers or disposable diapers. To let them cry it out or not. When I only had myself to worry about, decisions were easily made without much hesitation and they were usually good ones.

How do you currently manage stress and parenting?

Manage? The question should be how I survive. Caring for triplets is a full time job for three adults, not one. I survive because my husband comes home and gives me a few minutes to shower or eat or do laundry. I survive because awesome friends come by and clean my house for free. I survive because friends cook dinners for me several times a week. I don't know if we can "manage" anything anytime soon but we ARE surviving! I honestly don't have time for stress, in some ways that's a good thing but sometimes I forget to pay bills and take care of things that have to be done.

If you have a spouse/partner, how does that person support you in parenting?

Most dads are often overshadowed by over bearing mothers that don't trust their husbands to do things right. Ok maybe I probably would have been one of those had I only had one baby at a time. But after having triplets and seeing how industrious and capable my husband is, it reassures me that if I was not around my husband would be fully capable of caring for our children.

Describe your personality... & how would your friends describe you?

This is the hardest one to answer. It's often hard to understand others' decisions and sometimes you just have to think "they must be crazy." I hope my friends would say that I'm a reasonable person with lots of common sense and my life reflects that.

Who are you besides a mom? Tell us a little about yourself, your interests & hobbies.

I love to travel! Try new flavors of beer, enjoy friends, read books, cook, and grow my own vegetables. As I planned on having one baby I thought we could still afford and manage to travel, go to restaurants, and hang out with friends. After all I'd seen others do it. With three infants to care for, all of that is on hold for quite some time.

When was the last time you did something just for yourself and what was it?

About a year and a half ago, right before I became pregnant, my husband and I took a short vacation to the Oregon coast. Since we knew it might be our last trip together before kids we splurged on dinners, desert, wine, and shopped for antiques. We weren't bogged down by ruins to visit, museums to explore and new people to meet. We just enjoyed each others company.

If you had an extra two hours in a day, what would you do with that time?

My unselfish answer is catch up on household things that have been neglected. My selfish answer is to spend one hour reading in peace and quiet. The second hour would be spent over dinner and an enjoyable conversation with my husband.

What would you like to change and/or improve about yourself?

I need a new wardrobe! No I don't need mom jeans but I need clothes that now suite my, to put it nicely, more motherly figure.

1000 characters or less, tell us why you should be chosen as our 2011 Mama Makeover winner.

I'll keep that one to myself : )

Eli blowing raspberries

T man giggles

Eli is too interested in the camera to laugh

Thursday, March 3, 2011

March of Dimes

Help save babies! The mission of March of Dimes is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.

The walk is April 30th and the boys will be 7 months old by then so we are thinking they can handle this (we hope). We are gonna bust out the triplet stroller and go for a nice long walk.

We are walking with the Triplets & More team. A local couple just lost their triplet girls at 20 weeks so we will be walking in their memory.
Hannah Grace, Kaylee Faith and Elaina Hope

Get started early on your donations for tax year 2011!

Even if it's just 5 bucks, anything helps. How lame will I look if I can't even come up with $100 worth of donations : )

Donate Here to the March of Dimes