Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Friday, August 22, 2008

pass the rice, pretty peas

The excitement for green peas is beginning to wear thin . . .

But, oh how he LOVES his rice cereal!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

these little butts o' mine

A blog friend had the same experiment/experience . . .

I found this in a bag I used to take to the hospital every day. It's the first diaper the twins wore in the NICU.

It probably doesn't look too small until you see the diaper they wear now.

Here's a side-by-side . . .

And one more just to put it into perspective.

Another reminder of how lucky I am . . .

Sunday, August 17, 2008

8 months old

Happy 8-month birthday to my beautiful twins. Here is an update on each:

Owen Michael
18 lbs. 8 ounces

Owen is a little bit humor, a good bit flirty, and a whole lot of hungry.

He continues to eat and sleep well, while getting loads of playtime in between. He has moved on to solids happily, and laughs while he's eating his oatmeal in the morning and his green vegetables for lunch. All of this while drinking upwards of 30 ounces of milk a day!

Owen loves people, and he loves to smile. He rarely wakes up screaming in the morning; he just gets up, and talks to himself - progressively getting louder and louder and LOUDER until I surrender my own rest, and walk down the hall to get him. Then he flashes his big, beautiful smile at me, and no matter how early it is, I always end up smiling back.

Owen is officially in to everything now, and he has to be watched very carefully. Anything within his arm's reach goes directly into his mouth - from my hair to Elie's feet. Yesterday I was holding him, and I turned my head to warm his bottle. When I turned back, he was munching on a receipt from the drycleaner.

Despite his recent mischief, he is a joy to be around - so easygoing, so adaptable, so interested in the people that surround him. He impresses everyone with his development - bearing all weight on his legs, doing strong push-ups, and entertaining all with his hilarious babbling.

Eliot Makenna
15 lbs.

Eliot is a little bit stubborn, a good bit princess, and a whole lot of attitude.

She laughs, cries, and eats on her own time. We continue to struggle with her feeding, but have her involved in speech and occupational therapy a few times a week now. She is making progress with her solids - but it's going to be a VERY slow process for all of us. Unfortunately, the end of her feeding tube is nowhere in sight.

Eliot is the perfect mix of beauty and grit - think Grace Kelly meets Mia Hamm. She can melt you with her big, expressive eyes, and then turn and punch Owen in the face so hard he cries.

"Raspberrying" is her favorite form of communication these days, and she is not afraid to use this technique when she is unhappy, fearful, or bored. At appointments, a doctor can merely enter the room, and Elie Mak will inhale fiercely and let him or her have the "mad razzes." In the middle of the night, she sings her "raspberry song" until Mike picks her up (he's such a sucker). It makes me laugh every time - even when it's 3am.

Despite her sass, she still remains an inspiration. With all of the bad things that torment her throat right now (damaged vocal chord, feeding tube, painful reflux), she still continues to explore her world - happily focusing on faces, colorful art and fabrics, and her boyfriend, Buggie.

When you can catch her smiling (and it's never when I have my camera), it's with her whole face - lips, eyes, forehead, everything. But, when she's in a bad mood, all she wants is Michael. She will be a daddy's girl, for sure. And that fact has pretty much made Mike's life complete.

Eight months old. Hard to believe. So much good behind us; so much good ahead . . .

Happy Birthday, babies!

Friday, August 15, 2008

tummy time

Here's Eliot explaining the benefits of tummy time to her Daddy.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


Rice cereal is gross, so we are quickly moving Elie on to vegetables. Most doctors recommend that you start with the worst tasting vegetables first because if you give a child yummy, sweet fruit first, then they will never get a taste for yellow and green vegetables. Makes sense to me.

Our feeding therapist disagreed with this mentality for Eliot though. Since she is such a poor eater, the goal is to find something that she likes, and then let her explore food from there. I still wanted to start with vegetables, so we began with the delicious sweet potato.

Now, how can I possibly get frustrated with a face like this?

Our G.I. doctor recommended Owen also move on to solids since he is taking in so much formula these days (sometimes over 32 ounces). We started him on rice cereal, and he thinks it's the greatest food ever. He closes his lips, chews, swallows, and laughs. When he has had his tablespoon of cereal, he cries until I give him a couple more bites. He will be moving on to vegetables later this week, but he won't be starting with sweet potatoes. Because he is such a good eater, and because icky rice cereal went so well, we will be starting him on daa-dee-daa-daa . . . green peas.

Friday, August 8, 2008


We saw a new feeding therapist yesterday, and Mr. Hyde was right. She had no magic tricks to make Elie start eating. She believes it is reflux (ya think?), and we're just going to have to wait it out. (We've heard this before, right?)

She did say something very interesting though: "Eliot may never take a bottle."

Now, this may seem strange to those of you whose kids had ZERO trouble feeding, but it came as such a relief to us.

Bypass the bottle? Good. No problem. Let's move on.

Thankfully, the act of sucking on a bottle is only needed at one time in your life - babyhood. After that, we chew and swallow. Little Elie started on rice cereal with a spoon this week - all in an attempt to ease her from traumatic bottles to easy-going solids. She's doing great, too. Smiling and cooing; opening her mouth and swallowing beautifully.

Unfortunately, we cannot say "goodbye" to the bottle quite yet, because the majority of her nutrition will come from it for at least the next six months. So, we continue with seven drinking attempts a day, and then tube whatever she doesn't take orally. These attempts, however, have become so much less stressful for me. Knowing that Eliot doesn't absolutely, positively, without a doubt HAVE to master this task is comforting - in a weird sorta way.

Monday, August 4, 2008

jekyll and hyde

I have an alter-ego. And she hates to feed her daughter. HATES it.

Having a baby with a feeding disorder is awful. The cycle is all-consuming. In July, it seemed we were making progress with Eliot taking an ounce at every bottle. For the past two weeks though, she has refused just about everything - now only taking in one to three ounces a day. Everyone says it's reflux; everyone says we have to be patient, and wait it out.

"No problem," I think. "I've got about five more hours until I am certifiably crazy."

Our current feeding therapist has exhausted her efforts, and requested we see someone else. (Are we getting dumped?) We have an appointment with the head of feeding disorders for a prominent children's hospital in Atlanta this Thursday. Maybe she will have a magic trick that will help.

"Maybe she will!" says Dr. Jekyll. "I doubt it," laughs Hyde.

I'm having a difficult time finding the balance I need to deal with our situation. We are so fortunate, but I am so frustrated. 27-week twins are VERY early. We are lucky that both of them survived their birth and made it out of the NICU relatively healthy. I really do understand that. I know the sad stories; I saw them. That's why I feel so incredibly guilty for whining about my kid not loving the bottle. I should feel nothing but blessed . . .

But then, I try to feed Eliot, and every bit of blessed feels like it's biting me on the butt. And that's when my alter-ego tells me to run away from home. No, just kidding. It's not that bad yet. (It really isn't, mom.)