Thursday, July 31, 2008

I think the TERRIBLE TWO's are offically here.

OH MY GOODNESS!! What have we done, Jimmy and I, having kids and all, you know kids that just turned two and have discovered that indeed they do have an opinion and they do want to assert it. Sometimes they want to assert it at 1, 2 or 3 in the morning and loudly waking each other up.

I was reading on Lesley's site how her kiddos are giving her a hard time. I think she wished the bug away and it landed in my home. Both boys have been super crabby at times and each at separate times have had trouble sleeping. On Tuesday night Kolton evidently laid awake in his bed for an hour and thirty mins, listening to daddy mow. I didn't know he was awake and when I went in to check on him he stood up stated "daddy mow, neighbors, I get out". At that point I didn't quite know what to do. I felt sorry for him laying awake that long all by himself in his room, but on the other hand he was not crying. I recently read a post on Eva's blog about not knowing what to do sometimes. I felt like on the one hand I should get him out but on the other if I did he might think this is going to be a routine thing. So of course I got him out and he waited up until daddy came in and went to bed shortly after. The next night they both threw a fit at 1:00am and it took us an hour to get them back to sleep, one at a time. This whole week someone has woken up at least once a night. That someone last night was Kolton and then the dog wanting out. It's been a very busy week to say the least.

Just a side note. I started this post 4 days ago and am just now getting it finished, that's how busy it's been.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Story Time at the Library, and Goats and Chickens.

For the past three weeks, every Tuesday, we go to the library for lapsit story time. The class starts at 9:30am and lasts 30 mins. Initially I was pretty concerned if I was going to be able to handle them both, thankfully it has gone very well, I haven't even had to use the stroller and the boys hold my hand so nicely as we walk across the parking lot. Both boys seem to really enjoy going and while they don't sing the songs while we are there on the way home or just spontaneously at home they will start to sing them. Kolton's favorite part it getting his sticker and playing with the toys. It's also been nice for me to take them somewhere where other adults are although I've yet to really start talking to any of them yet.

Ok, on to the goats and chickens. This past weekend we went to visit my dad. We've not gone to my dad's that often because he and his wife used to come to our house every Sunday, but since we moved he has not been able to visit as often due to us being 30 mins further away. Anyway, we went to his house and they have a goat and some chickens. The boys have never seen either in real life. Kolton had fun chasing the chickens and feeding the goat. Karter fed the goat some too, but really liked playing on the swing set. They had such a fun time.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Mail Mail

In our old house the mail slot was in the door. The mail man would just stick the mail in the slot and it would land on the floor.

We recently installed a cat door in the door that leads to the garage ( just a side note, I like the cat box to be in the garage so you don't have to deal with the cat litter and smell in the house and the cats don't seem to mind).

While fixing the boys lunch I see them gathering their cards from their birth day and heading to that door. When I went to see what they were doing this is what I found.

I can only assume that they are using it like a mail slot. They call mail. Mail Mail. How cute it that?

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Doing Ok.

We're doing OK here. Karter seems to be just fine running around like normal, eating normal, doing normal stuff. We tried very hard last week to get him in for at least an EKG sooner so we could at least know something more than he has a murmur on the right side of his heart. I got out my stethoscope that I have had for years the other night. I listened to his heart myself and I, with my untrained ear could hear the murmur. You know, I have to believe that had the doctor felt his life was in danger we would have been sent to Children's Hospital that day. I even asked the doctor if I had to worry that he was just going to "drop dead". He assured me no, but really how do we know. He didn't give us a diagnosis, he didn't tell us this was something minor and he would be fine. He did tell me that the x-ray didn't look bad, but there was some enlargement. I'm not sure he knows what he has done. Not just to me but really to my husband who was not at the appointment, didn't get the assurance from the doctor and didn't get his questions answered. Normally he could have called that night or the next day, but our doctor was leaving for two weeks the next day.

All kinds of bad things start going through your head. Such bad things as will these be the last days with Karter? Will he eventually need a heart transplant, will he die? So you do what any parent does and search then Internet, but you don't really have enough information so your see all kinds of scary things that basically say it's bad, it's all bad. It's awful that you can't get in to see the doctor sooner, what if something happens between now and then and if he had been seen sooner it could have been prevented. What if, What if, What if.... I hate that game. I played it already when they were in the NICU. I've already seriously thought about my kids dying. I've already watched them struggle to breath. I don't want to do anything like that EVER again.

Then the question comes. Why me, Why us, Why Karter. All this because we don't have answers. We won't until Aug 4th when they will do an echo cardiogram.

I have Faith that all is and will be fine. All I have is Faith right now because I sure don't have any answers.

It may sound like I'm having a really hard time dealing with this right now, but the truth is for now I'm dealing with it fine. That's the way I cope. I deal with it while I'm in the midst of it and it's when it's over that is when I have the hardest time.

I truly feel he will be fine, whether it be nothing big or whether he need some sort of medication. I know he and Kolton have Angels looking over them, and I continued to pray as I did that day in the NICU beside their isolette that God continue to keep them safe and those Angels continue to watch over them their whole life.

Today I had to take Kolton to the Urgent Care because he woke up with a rash all over his body and a fever. He had started getting the rash in the waiting room on Monday when I took Karter to the doctor. I showed him while we were there, but it was only on his stomach. The doctor said it looked fine nothing to worry about but to keep an eye on it. Well it came and went all week. It didn't seem to itch him and he was fine, not running a fever or anything. Today he looked awful when he woke up, had it all over his face, stomach, some on his legs and back. They tested him for strep, which was negative. They are testing for strep A but that takes several days to come back, so for now we have to give him Zyrtec and Benadryl for the rash. His fever stayed gone until the Tylenol wore off so before bed he got another dose of that. Through it all he has continued to act like he has felt OK so we shall see.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Trust your Instincts.

I have been worried for Karter for about two weeks now. For the first week of it I just dismissed it as some hormonal thing on my part. As the next week moved on I was still worried about him and began asking my husband if he was worried and if he thought he was ok. I had no reason to think anything was wrong at this point other than I suspected he may have an ear infection. He woke up one morning with a low grade fever. It hung around all day and would go down when I gave him Tylenol. The next morning it was gone, however he still kept touching one of his ears. Last Sunday when I got him out of bed in the morning, I thought his lips looked a little blue, but he seemed fine and took off running so I kinda dismissed it at maybe he was cold as it was a little chilly in the house. I asked Jimmy if he thought his lips looked blue and he said yes, but Karter had just put on some of my blue chapstick, I still though it was something other than that, but I kept an eye on him and he seemed fine. Other than the mild fever one day and the ear thing, and being supper cranky for a few days I really had no other concern, but I still had an underlining worry. I decided I would call the doctor on Monday and have his ears check and mention to the doctor that I thought his lips looked blue. I didn't get that far. As Dr. C began his exam he stopped and kept listening to his heart. I of course asked "what's the matter" and the doctor asked if he had previously had a murmur.

He begins to look through his charts and all his info says no murmurs. I know one of the boys had a slight murmur in the NICU but we were told it has resolved itself before we left. All exams to this point has not indicated a murmur. It is at this time that I tell him I thought his lips looked blue yesterday. He sends us to get an x-ray and results show that Karter has some enlargement on his right side. We now need to see a pediatric cardiologist. We can't get in until Aug. 4th which for a parent that is scared and doesn't know what is wrong is a very long time. I asked the doctor if I needed to limit his activity, or rush him to the ER if his lips turn blue again. He answered no to all of these. I then asked if he was just going to drop dead and he assured me he was not. However, I don't know much about the heart other than it's what makes you live or die so it's very scary.

I know I have awesome readers. I ask that you please keep Karter in your thoughts and prayers as we take yet another journey in parent hood.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Birthday Party

The party was a hit. Thank you to everyone who attended. I'm so grateful that we have so many family and friends that love us and our boys. The boys love all their gifts and have played with them all today. You should see my living room, it looks like a toy store.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Happy 2nd Birthday!!!

Today the boys turned two. Oh were did the time go? Jimmy took off work today and we took the boys to a science museum. The both seemed to have fun, that is until Karter got too tired and had a little meltdown. Thankfully that didn't last too long. Their actual party is on Saturday so today was just us four.

The day started with daddy giving the boys their birthday gift from him. Phones, real phones. Of course they are not plugged into the phone line, but they are charged up and make all kinds of noises.

Then we went to the science museum. Even though we forgot our stroller,(seriously how did we do that)we were able to use some pretty nasty strollers at the museum. Karter had a ball pushing it around.

Then we had some not so good store bought cupcakes.

I love you boys! I'm so proud of how far you've come and look forward to watching you grow into what you will become.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

A Story with Pictures.

For the past week or so there has been a lot of this going on. Mostly by Karter.

I think it's because of a lack of this, but I'm not possitively sure.

I think Karter's lack of sleep is becasue of my homeboy Kolton, who has not been wanting to nap very long and waking at night, which in turn is waking Karter. Which once again causes this.

So for the first time since they were 6 days old there were seperated last night. We moved Karter to his own room. while this made mama a little teary eyed Karter didn't seem to mind at all. I of course found myself sitting in the hall floor listening at both doors. Karter was silent within 2 mins, while Kolton who sings himself to sleep, broke my heart by humming and saying Karter every few seconds. I sat there for five more mins. and everything become silent. Both slept through the night and we will see how naptime goes as they are sleeping now.

I had always inteneded for each boy to have their own room when they wanted it but I just didn't think it would happen this soon. I think I'm the one that is feeling sad about it as the boys really don't seem to mind that much. So we will be decorating Karters room very soon.

So hopefully we will see more of this by both boy.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

March for Babies Part 2

In the last part of June I posted about how it's time to get working on our fundrasing for the March of Dimes. I said I would be doing several post about it. I want to post our story, how the March of Dimes helped us. Last year we were very honored to be the ambassador family for Shawnee, this year that honor is given to a new family, one that also knows the heartache of having a preemie and all the fears that come along with that title.

I have set my goal at $300(you can donate by clicking on the purple box on the side bar). Surley with your help I can reach that goal. I ask you to take a moment to read my speech from last year and watch the video, which I am also posting on the sidebar, just click "The story of Kolton and Karter". Your life may have not been directley affected by prematurity or infant mortality, but there are tons of us who have. The March of Dimes strives to give every baby a chance. With help theres hope.

Hello, I’m Brandy, 2007 Ambassador Mom and mother to two adorable one year old boys. I would like to thank you for the opportunity to share with you their story, their struggles and their triumphs. We are honored to be this years March of Dimes ambassador family.Before the boys came along, I had heard of the March of Dimes I knew they helped babies, however I didn’t know to what extent they helped them or all the research they have done. Unfortunately, I would find out the hard way. In January 2006 my husband Jimmy and I found out we were pregnant, we were excited and scared. We experienced all the normal feelings a couple feels when they learn they are to become parents. On February 28, 2006 on my first doctors visit, we found out we were having twins; we were shocked and very excited. Although, we had not thought of twins we where very happy to welcome two little ones to our family. My pregnancy progressed normally with no problems until June 23, 2006. I had been really tired that day and was feeling what I thought was the babies “balling or bunching” up. I know now that they were contractions. Fortunately, I worked in my OB’s office so I was able to be seen right away. I found out that I was in fact dilating. My greatest fear had come true. I was in pre-term labor. At 26 weeks and 3 days I knew it was way too soon for my little guys to enter the world. Sure I was excited and anxious to meet them, but I wanted to do so under better circumstances. I was immediately sent to the hospital and started on medications to stop my contractions. When it was thought that the medications might not work, I was medi-flighted to a hospital that had the capabilities and equipment to handle infants that are born pre-term. After an intense 4 days on all kinds of medications to stop contractions and labor, it appeared that the doctors and the medicine had succeeded. I was however told to expect to stay on hospitalized bed rest for the remainder of my pregnancy. After 10 days in the hospital it seemed that all had calmed down and it was decided that I would be sent home with strict instructions to rest and not move around much. I did this for two days, and then I noticed that one of the babies was not moving around as much. I called my OB office and was told to come in. At that visit it was found that one of the babies was very low in the birth canal and it was best to be sent back to the hospital. There I stayed for 6 more days and then again was sent home for two days on strict bed rest. On July 17, 2006 one day shy of 30 weeks, my water broke at 5:00am I was rushed to the hospital once again that was equipped for pre-term births. I was once again given medications to stop my contractions, however since my water had broken, the doctors felt it best, for my labor to continue if the medications did not work. At 10:50 that morning the contractions intensified and I was rushed to the OR to deliver. At 11:30am Kolton Wayne, twin A was born by natural delivery. Twenty-seven minuets later at 11:57 Karter James twin b was born by c-section. I did not even get to see Kolton, but they held Karter up for me to see for a few seconds before he was whisked away to do life saving procedures on him. Jimmy and I were so scared. We knew they were small but didn’t know at that point how small. Once everything calmed down and I was recovering in my room we were told that Kolton weighted 3lbs 1oz and Karter 2lb 11oz. I was unable to see them until very late that night.After all numbing medications wore off and I was able to stand on my own I was allowed to go by wheelchair to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit or NICU to see my babies. When we arrived it was very late, we were required to remove all jewelry and scrub our hands up to our elbows with soap and hot water for 1 minute. We would have to do this each time we entered the NICU. The first baby I saw was Karter. He was very small and pink. He had a tiny diaper on him. As I looked him over I noticed that the cartilage in his ears were not completely formed yet, I had read about this in one of my many books about babies and what to expect about their growth at 30 weeks. He was hooked up to the ventilator which was breathing for him because his lungs where not yet developed enough to breath on his own. He had wires and tubes all over him and he was hooked up to a machine that would alarm if his heart rate went too low or too high, if his breathing slowed too much or if his oxygen saturation was too low or too high. Through all the tubes and wires I saw a beautiful baby boy that I was so in love with. Next I was taken to see Kolton who was in another room. He was tiny as well, but a bit bigger than his brother. He had dark hair and lots of it for such a tiny baby. I remember wondering how much he would have had, had he been born full term. He too was hooked up to a ventilator, due to his immature lungs, he also had tubes and wires all over him, but he had one thing different that Karter did not have. He also had the addition of a big lamp that was know as a bililight. This was being used because he was jaundice. He would have the light for a week or more. While on the light he had to wear goggles to protect his immature eyes. Because he was on the light for so long I rarely got to see his tiny little face for the first few weeks. Even though he was a strange blue color due to the lights, and even though he was hooked up to all the same machines as Karter I feel in love with him too. We began to affectionately call him our little monkey.It was the next day that the doctors began to tell us of all the medications they were on and what to expect in terms of their care while in the NICU. On that day July 18, 2006 I heard of surfactant for the first time. The doctors explained to us what the medication was and how it worked and that our boys would more than likely be getting two doses of this. Later when we had the chance we researched exactly what surfactant was and what it was used for. That is when I found the March of Dimes website. I learned that surfactant, which is a soapy substance found in lungs is already present in full term babies and that when they take their first breath their lungs open up and the alveoli or tiny little air sacs stay open afterwards and are ready to receive each breath, however in pre-term infants, when they take their first breath their lungs open but with each exhale their alveoli or air sacs collapse making breathing harder and harder. This is also known as Respiratory Distress Syndrome or RDS. Both Kolton and Karter had this due to their prematurity. What surfactant did for my boys and for many, many preterm infants is it allowed their lungs to balance the pressure on the outside with the pressure on the inside of their lungs and remain open to incoming air. According to the March of Dimes website, surfactant began to be used in the 1980’s developed by Dr. T. Allen Merritt. Since its use the number of babies that die from RDS, has gone from 10,000 per year to less than 1,000. My boys fit into this statistic. My boys where saved not only by the doctors, but also by this wonderful discovery of surfactant, it literally allowed my boys to breath another day.As the days went on we began to learn the ins and outs of the NICU. You are told up front that it is going to be an emotional roller coaster, and it is. Everyday is different, one day things are going good and the next something is not right. You began to think of each day as one step closer to going home. Karter spent 3 days on the Ventilator, Kolton spent two, and the next step after the ventilator is CPAP or Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. CPAP does not breathe for you like the ventilator but it does create enough pressure when you inhale to keep your airway open. Kolton spent 2 days on CPAP and Kater spent 4 days on it. After CPAP is the nasal cannula. The nasal cannula is used to provide supplemental oxygen to a patient. Kolton spent 5 days with the cannula and at 11 days old was breathing room air on his own. Karter would stay on the cannula until he came home and after being home for one month he was able to breathe room air on his own. The boys spent 48 days in the NICU, while there both received many medications to help their heart rate regulate, head ultrasounds to check for brain bleeds, many X-rays to check their heart and other organs, blood transfusions due to low blood counts and the inability of their little bodies to keep up. Light therapy for Jaundice, heel sticks to check their blood gasses. Numerous IV’s in the head, legs and arms and a scar for each of those sticks.This has all been as described to us by the nurses in the NICU, a rollercoaster of a ride, but the end result are two beautiful boys, that to this date have no lasting effects from their prematurity, they are healthy and thriving and we are so thankful, thankful to the March of Dimes for all their research, thankful for the Doctors and nurses that played a part in their survival and thankful to you, those who donate and volunteer in the quest to save babies.
Thank you again.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Fun with Markers

We had our first marker accident today. Well it was actually a highlighter but Karter didn't care. While changing Kolton's diaper, Karter disappeared into my bedroom. I called for him and he didn't answer or come so I finished up quickly and went into the room. I saw he had taken a highlighter out of the side table drawer, but the lid was on it. Then I saw his face. I had to laugh he did a pretty good job giving himself some sort of war paint look. Both the boys have been watching me put on my make up and I can only assume that is what he was imitating since he got it so close to his eyes. Time to remove the pens and markers from all drawers.

On a side note, he was not feeling well today, well enough to paint his face, but he had been running a fever. I also asked him to smile and this is what he did. I think he thought I meant show me your teeth, because his daddy says to him "show me your pretty teeth" and this is what he does.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Big Datub

That's what Karter calls a bathtub, a datub. The other night I let the boys take a bath in my HUGE master bath tub. The thing is huge, by far the biggest one I have ever seen and the kids seem to really like to take a bath in there. However it is hard for me to reach them and and wash them as the sides are too deep. Anyway here are a couple of pictures.

Monday, July 07, 2008

I like these.

I've had these since the boys were born they were a gift from my mom. While I liked them when she gave them to me, after I sat them on a book shelf I really didn't pay that much attention to them. Since we have moved they ended up somehow in our master bathroom. I removed them from a box and sat them on the counter and there they have stayed . I look at them every morning when I get dressed and every evening before I go to bed. The longer I looked at them the more I like them. I think she got them at Hallmark, but I was unable to find any info on them by doing a short Internet search.

Just by chance one has darker hair than the other just like my boys. One thing that I found unusual is, well they don't have a face. Well they do have a face just no features. I'm not sure why they made them like this, but it's something that I now don't even notice.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

July 4th and why my family Rocks!

Our very chinese, and very nice new neighbors
There are a few people missing from this picture, but it's the majority
Papa pulling Kolton in the wagon

Our crazy Great Dane Zeeo, who despite never seeing fireworks up close, tried to eat them while they were going.
Karter, Kolton and Granddad and a very large pop.
Tha Boyz
My Sister, Mom, Neice, Step-dad and Karter

My sister in law and smiley Collin

Collin-He did this every single time I used the flash

Keelan and Kyndie

*I've been trying to get this post to work all day. Something is not working right either with my computer or with blogger. It won't let me cut and past the pictures to where I want them, so instead of posting none I'm posting them as they loaded. Ugg! I like it to look pretty and it dosen't but it will have to do.

We had a very nice day yesterday. The first part of the day was spent as we do everyday. However the later part of the day was spent with most of our family, at least my side anyway. Just the day before we thought we were going to be going to my sister's new house for the day, however at the last minute that plan fell through and I offered our house for the get together that my sister had planned. There ended up being 22 people show up. Here's where my family rocks. My parents have been divorced for about 16 years and while in the early stages my parents were not the best of friends as the years went on the hurt healed and we have all been able to get along wonderfully. I believe we are truly blessed in this aspect. It allowed us to have a wonderful day and make memories in our new home. Both my parents, their spouses, my mom's mom, and my dad's mom and her mother, along with my sibling and their spouses and kids all were part of yesterdays celebration. That's four generations on my mom's side and five on my dad's all in the same house. That's amazing in it's self no one else I know has five generations still in their family and not many divorced families can get along well enough to be in the same house.

The boys had a great time going from person to person. Being pulled in the wagon by papa and sitting on granddad's lap during some fireworks. Our new neighbors even stopped by to enjoy the get food and conversation.

So I hope everyone had as nice a 4th as our family did.