Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas to all...

And to all a good night! Happy Holidays from Team Gillis! Hope Santa gets you everything you asked for. I borrowed a couple of his elves as you can see:

And of course you can't forget Ms. Santa Claws herself:

Enjoy this time with your family and friends!! I must admit, having kids makes Christmas special again! And for all that have been's to a completely and totally uneventful 2009, we need it!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Photo Tag

Monica over at her blog Jonas Family tagged me for photo are the rules:

1) Choose the 4th folder where you store your pictures on your computer
2) Select the 4th picture in the folder
3) Explain the picture
4) Tag 4 people to do the same
NO CHEATING! (cropping, editing, etc!)

I was pretty curious as to what was the 4th photo in the 4th folder on my iPhotos (and I am sure you are waiting with baited breath as well!), so without further ado -

::sigh of relief:: Thank goodness it wasn't one of my baby shower photos, because if I have any say, they are not going to see the light of day...EVER!

Anyway, this is a photo of Matt and I at our friend Steve & Wendy's wedding. From the look of it, this was taken prior to the copious alcohol that we consumed there. See, Steve & Wendy were nice enough to sit our table (a table of very social drinkers) right next to the bar! Good times, good times :)

I tag MJ at Now is not a Time, Megan at The Wilsons, Aimee at The Barbagallo Twins, and Laura at Taylo 2 Babies...but don't feel the need to do it if you don't want too, but I had to say I was intrigued with what photo would pop up under these rules :)

Quick Update - The boys had their 9 month appointment and Josh weighs 20lb2oz (50%) and Brody weights 21lb4oz (75%) Their height and head circumference is wonderfully average as well. These boys have quintupled their birth weight in 9 months! Way to go, boys!! Oh, and Josh finally sprouted his first tooth - so for those of you who are keeping track (I'm guessing this is information only a mother could care about) Brody has two bottom teeth, and Josh has one. All the better to eat their Christmas cookies with, my dear :)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Miracle of Miracles...

Date: December 7th, 2008
Place: Our house (specifically, our living room floor)
Time: Not sure, it was daylight (give me a break, I'm lucky I still remember my own name!)
Witnesses: Me, Matt, Grandma & Grandpa H
Event: Both boys holding their own bottles together for the first time!!
Evidence: Photographic (kinda creepy how much that word can look like pornographic if you look too quickly!)

And it has been smooth sailing ever I'm just flat out lying, but the boys holding their bottles is a very momentous occasion, even for a mom of a singleton! Baby holding their own bottle=free hands for all involved! In fact, I didn't even know what to do with myself those first few times in which they were holding their own bottles...I just stared in disbelief, knowing that (in the words of Jack Johnson) I was sitting, waiting, wishing for this day to arrive.

And it seems, just like every other milestone that I look forward to, it actually bittersweet. Because, it is one less thing the babies need me for. Look at these self-sufficient little guys. Soon enough they'll be changing their own diaper (which in reality would be fabulous, especially the really messy ones!), mixing their own bottles, and climbing into their own crib!

As much as I am NOT ready for my boys to up and move away to a mother of multiples, I was more than ready for them to be able to hold their own bottles. As I am sure most people don't think about, the logistics of one person feeding two (or more!) babies is quite challenging, at least bottle feeding. Here's our methodology for feeding twins:

1) You have to find a secure (i.e. buckled-in) place to put the babies - when they were tiny, the boppies worked fine because there was no moving around, then we moved to the swings, because the boys sure as hell didn't enjoy them for the soothing motion, and the carseats were always perfect for this method when out in public, then finally we were using their bouncer seats.

2) When the secured area is located, you then need a prop - which can be a pillow, a blanket rolled up, a coat...pretty much anything that you can fold, roll, or mash up to hold up a bottle.

3) Once the little contraption was set up, you placed the bottles onto said props and then would sit and wait until one or the other's bottle would fall. And then screaming would ensue, especially those extremely fun times when both bottles would fall and you were just NOT quick enough and the world was crashing in because the boys didn't have their bottles.

4) And then you had to burp them, of course one at a time, which doesn't seem like a big deal, but when you have babies with bad reflux, this was a beat the clock kind of situation. Because as you were burping one, if you didn't get to baby 2 soon enough, he would then spit up half his bottle. And then more screaming would ensue (mostly me, as I remember).

So, although bittersweet, it is more so a sweet era in the Gillis household!! Now, if they could only use the toilet....

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Wow, 9 months old...already!?!

Really??? My boys are 9 months old?? My little preemies that spent what felt like an eternity in the NICU?? I mean look at 'em, they think they are old enough to wear flannel and crowd surf! (Matt's contribution to the blog photos, if you didn't know he is obsessed with the 90's grunge movement and nothing makes him happier than flannels being back in):

Well, as you can see, they aren't so preemie in size anymore. We don't have their 9-month well visit to the doctor until tomorrow, but I'll make an educated guess based on their weights from their stay in the hospital...and we can see how close I am!

Josh - 20lb 9oz
Brody - 21lb 14oz

We'll see how close I came tomorrow, but I am guessing that I am not that far off. I'm so happy to have such strong, growing boys!

Speaking of which, my boys are now in full effect, 12 month clothing. Um, what happened to the 9-month clothing?? They kinda skipped over it, passing Go and collecting their 200 dollars. And the Gerber clothing?? Fuggetaboutit, they are in 18 month sleepers! They can't even fit into any of the uber cute "My First Christmas" clothing because they are too damn big. I guess the baby clothing companies have decided amongst themselves that if they are fitting in 12 month clothing, math predicts that they have indeed already had a "First Christmas" and are not in need of a "Baby's Second Christmas" getup. But to me that is just weight-ist, because although I know my boys are big guys, they are not by any means the most ginormous children out there and what about those other poor huge babies that can't fit into any of the Christmas clothing available?? It's a sad state of affairs, I'll tell ya!

Anyway, let me tell you what is up with my babies (sigh, more like little boys) - they are both sitting up on their own and have been for about a month or so. Of course, they topple over from time to time when there is a particularly fascinating toy (or dog) out of their reach. Their vocabulary has expanded and includes dada, baba, and gaga.....but, sadly no mama. I mean short of my life mimicking that famous scene in "Being John Malkovich" with mama being the only phrase we speak, I have no clue how to get them to say mama! I know, I know, someday I will rue the day that they can say my name and will wish that they could forgot it. But in all honesty, all I want for Christmas is my boys to call me mama (not that you have to take anything back for me, I'll use all the other gifts to numb my pain).

What else...they are obsessed with balls, which makes us obsessed with finding the lost ones throughout the house. Considering some of the toys they are playing with are meant to be Christmas gifts, it's kinda pathetic that we have already lost some balls prior to December 25th (and no family Christmas toys were included in this ball tragedy, I swear!).

Oh and the boys have now graduated to the big boy tub!! Here are some photos of the big event:

And finally (drumroll, please!)......THEY ARE HOLDING THEIR OWN BOTTLES!! Oh, happy day! But that is such news that it merits its own post, so stay tuned :)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

My child has mini razorblades in his mouth…

Two of them to be precise. Apparently all Brody wanted for Christmas this year was his two bottom teeth (so does that mean I can return the millions I spent on toys this year??). But now that he has them, all he wants to do is chew on everything, his favorite subject being his mother’s poor nose…and fingers. Apparently he has a taste for flesh, which leads me to believe that Brody is A) a zombie, or B) a vampire-in-training (although he has drawn blood, he has not learned the skills to actually suck it, yet).

His brother has yet to go over to the dark side, but I have a feeling it is really just a matter of time. I can feel a lump on his bottom gum, meaning there is a tooth under there just dying to burst through, but in the meantime is making Josh (and us) miserable. So I am not sure which is worse, having a baby with teeth that wants to gnaw on any body part that gets in his way, or a baby that is super grumpy-pants from his sore gums. I think I am leaning towards the super grumpy pants baby, because at least it doesn’t cause me physical pain…or loss of blood.

So I am guessing I need to find some good sturdy branches for chewing in order to dull down the honed blades on Brody’s teeth, unless anyone else out there has better ideas…

Sunday, December 7, 2008

I know, I know, I know...'s been forever since my last post, but please don't yell at me!! I have very good excuses, er, reasons for my lack in posting and you will feel really badly for yelling at me at my lack of posting.

(So here's a cute photo of the boys in their holiday card outfits to help you to forget your disappointment in my non-posting)

First off, as most parents dread, we had our 1st AND 2nd visits to the ER over Thanksgiving weekend (well, with twins, you get to do two of everything, right...even the crummy stuff). The first visit occurring on actual Thanksgiving day with Josh waking up with tons of gooey gunk in his eyes. Well, I say waking up, implying that the poor boy actually slept the night before, but in reality his sleep probably added up to about 45 minutes in total. So, my husband being the trooper that he was staying with Josh through the night, I took one for the team and took Josh to the Emergency Room while Matt stayed home and entertained a wide-awake Brody.

It was a very run of the mill ER visit with very little waiting, thankfully (I'm guessing not too many people have turkey frying burns at 9AM). We got our eye ointment and were sent on our way. Too bad it meant that we were now quarantined at home on the best food day of the year. And to add insult to injury (or is it injury to insult, sigh, mom brain at work here, ladies and gentlemen), we had to spend our day of cleaning. And not normal cleaning, nope, we had to sanitize every living thing in our house, every toy, every fabric, EVERYTHING. In hopes that said pink eye would not be passed on to me, or Matt, or Brody. We knew that this could be all in vain, our futile attempt at de-germing the house, but we had to at least try.

Needless to say, we ended up at the ER on Sunday night for Brody this time...his eyes had gotten all gooey after an afternoon nap. And Josh's pink eye never totally went away, so we decided to bring them both in to get checked out because they seemed a little on the wheezy side as well. So, we packed up and off we went to the ER, but unfortunately, there were many, many more people there than the last time, so we had a feeling our night would be spent surrounded by all sorts of sickness and injury. But unfortunately, we were wrong.

They took Josh back right away, which if you know anything about emergency rooms, that is not a good thing. Especially when there were 20-odd people waiting before us. Matt took Josh back to get looked at while I stayed in the waiting room with Brody who was apparently not quite as sick as his brother and could stand to wait a while. Minutes felt like hours until they finally took us back to be with Matt & Josh. I was expecting the worst after many flurried text messages back and forth with Matt (thank goodness for technology!) saying how it wasn't good what was going on with Josh, and he was right. Poor guy couldn't breathe well at all, so it was decided that he was going to be on oxygen while they were waiting for tests results to return. And then his brother had to go through the same torturous poking and prodding that his brother did, but unfortunately I was there to witness Brody's screaming, unlike Josh's. Long story short, both boys were admitted to the pediatric floor of the hospital to be monitored overnight.

But the overnight monitoring turned into a 5 day stay at Chez Lowell General, which is not what we were expecting in the least. And it was a tortuous 5 days, with lots of poking and prodding the boys, taking temps, suctioning noses (the WORST thing EVER), administering breathing treatments. And this happened AROUND THE CLOCK, meaning no sleep for anyone, worst of all no sleep for the poor sick little boys. Finally on our last full day, we had had it and told the nurses that while, yes, it was important for the boys to get checked out, it was JUST AS IMPORTANT for them to get their sleep! Thankfully, they agreed and our last night I think we actually got 2-4 hour blocks of sleep which is the most we had the entire time there.

And now we are home, glorious home, but still needed to administer breathing treatments, nose suctioning, and medication. Turns out the boys had RSV (click this link to read about it, it's not a fun thing for babies, but preemie babies, especially), Pink Eye, Ear Infections, and Pneumonia (just Josh had this). Poor guys, when they get sick, they REALLY got sick! Thankfully, they are so much better, although not 100%. We are still quarantined to the house because they could still pass on the RSV to other babies, so better to be safe than sorry.

So now, in order to keep our boys safe we have decided to cut way back on their exposure to other people. Which means; no big parties, no mall, no Santa (sniff, sniff), no sick people visiting. While our boys may not look like preemies anymore, their immune systems still are, and will be for the first two winters. So, I apologize ahead of time if there are times where we can't visit or have people visit us, but we gotta do what's best for our little guys. They are our priority now.

I have lots more to share with you regarding the boys and all they are getting into now a days, but that will be for another day. Just wanted to update you on Team Gillis and promise now that the sickness has subsided for the most part, I'll be able to update more frequently...I promise!!

And on that note, here are a couple fun photos of the boys that I took this weekend (they are getting so big and so fun!) :