Tuesday, June 7, 2011

7 months...

Hey gang -

On Sunday the twins turned 7 months old... of course that's just 4 months old if you correct their age for the 3 months premature that they arrived...

During the past 7 months, we've had all sorts of firsts - first breaths without a ventilator, first bottle, first night at home, first night sleeping all through the night, first blog update deadline missed, second blog update deadline missed, third blog update deadline missed...

And because of those missed deadlines, there's a lot to get you all caught up on (and of course a bunch of pictures and some video too)...  so hang on to your hats, we're off!

Caroline - Little miss Caroline is still little and her not eating has been a pretty big issue for us.  We're finally beginning to see some progress with her, but it has been a long and very frustrating path trying to get her to want to eat.  After countless doctor appointments, occupational therapy visits, an x-ray swallow study, thickened feeds, it all culminated in a return to the hospital for Caroline in the end of May.  In order to fast-track some tests and to extensively monitor her eating habits and the behaviors that we'd been reporting, the doctors placed Caroline back in the hospital for 3 days.

And it seems that from her admission, we may have figured out a solution.  Caroline suffers from acid reflux and is on a high dose of Prilosec to combat it.  Her food aversion was a result of her figuring out that when she ate, she felt bad and thus... why eat???

Now that we've seemed to have solved the pain of the acid reflux, she's beginning to realize that food isn't all that bad (and thus confirming that she IS actually my daughter).  We may still have our moments, but it's not nearly the struggle we were encountering for the first few months out of the NICU.

I'm not going to sugar-coat it... the reason this blog is so late is directly tied to the constant battle we had to wage every 3 hours trying to get our daughter to eat her bottle.  It was brutal, frustrating, and made us feel pretty powerless to help her.  I'd tell you about it, but I think the video below explains it the best.

All in all, it made for a baby who just wasn't happy.

But as you can see from the video below... things are changing.

She's beginning to be happier and act more like "a normal baby" - which includes eating.  This is big news for us b/c we were growing concerned about her slow rate of growth.  If she's not growing consistently (especially b/c she started out so small), it can really affect her development.  So, as parents, we're much happier that our little gal is beginning to eat.

Which leads us to some eating news about Logan.

The little guy (as little as 15lbs. can be) is now eating 1 meal a day of rice cereal.  And loving it!!!

Check out the video of him trying it for the first time:

For as difficult as Caroline has been, Logan's been our saving grace.  He's just been the perfect little guy for us- happy to play with us or by himself, easy to go to bed, hungry as a mule, and hardly ever fussy. I'm beginning to rethink his middle name, wanting to change it to Lebowski- because our little dude abides!

He's also discovered spit.  And as you'll see in the video below- it's a blast for him!!!

So, as you can tell... we've been busy, but we're turning the corner to a much more fun sort of busy.

There's a lot more from the past few months and I'll let the videos and pictures tell the story:

First... Logan offers Caroline a little "help".

Next we enjoy a perfect chorus from both sides of Dad's lap!

And finally, from just this last weekend, someone's learning peekaboo!!!

And here are some fun pictures to get you caught up:

Logan catches a nap with Grandpa Chris

When she was really fussy, Caroline could nap anywhere.
Here she's asleep on Mom's lap.

Though they're still not really aware of each other, they seem to
get along pretty well for now.  Logan held her hand for the entire nap.

Bathtime can be exhausting... or their warm fluffy blankets are just
too comfortable!!!

After a stressful feeding of Caroline, it wasn't uncommon to nap... for both of them.

Grandma Carol learns that the warm sleeping baby can induce instant narcolepsy

Caroline before her X-ray swallow test.  They had to swaddle her and strap her in to
keep her in one position and as still as possible.  A tall order for our little wiggler.
She was NOT pleased with us after this.
My old college roommate Jeff Lawson visited from LA and was given some
hardcore "hands-on" baby training.

Someday when he's a teenager and been giving his mother a rough time, I'm going to bring out
this photo and remind her that she's got it coming to her from him for taking this photo
and putting it on Facebook.

Logan didn't wait until his teen years.  He projectile-pooped all over his Mom on Mother's Day!

Jedi Master in Training.  The force is strong with this one.

I've got my derby hat... ready for the ride in the convertible Dad.
What do you mean we don't have a convertible???

Derby hats are for suckers.  I'm growing out my hair  as fast as possible so that I
can rock out some stylin' bows.

Logan usually sleeps with his hands held high above his head.
This one with his hands together was too cute to pass up.

Right hand on her face is a very typical position to find Caroline asleep.

Dad's shades are too big now... but I'll soon be stealing them !

Caroline during her hospital admission.
She did pretty well, but was less than impressed with the nursing staff.
She missed her favorites from the NICU - Megan, Ashley, Cheri, Karla, Sarah
and all the other "Green Ladies".
"What do you mean, she's here to stay, Dad???"

Michael's Aunt Barb visited from CA and had a wonderful
weekend pampering the babies.

Grandpa Jim hanging out with Logan.

I can almost sit up on my own Mom!

This is the BEST toy Mom!!! You can't ever put it away and Dad doesn't have it at all!!!

My hand's cold Mom.

So we've been a little busy... sorry for the lack of updates.  I'm looking into a way to update the blog easily from my iPhone.  If I get that running, I'll be posting with a lot greater frequency - I can type with just one hand on it while the other is full of baby!!!

As always, we're extremely thankful for all the love and support we get from you all.  We hope you all are having a wonderful spring and enjoying your family and loved ones.

Keep an eye out for us... we're beginning to be mobile...  The whole clan's been out to breakfast a couple of times, out to dinner once, and even made a trek to Iowa City for a weekend.  Topeka had better be ready for July 4th...  If you see us out and about- don't hesitate to stop us and get caught up!

All our very best to you and your families!

Mike, Melissa, Logan & Caroline Vogel