Thursday, October 26, 2006

A Long Overdue Update

I planned on doing this update yesterday, but the website was down for maintanence and I didn't have a chance later on. Now that I believe I have this thing working well, it's time to fill in the gaps from the past three weeks we've been away. I think the easiest way is to just spotlight each kid individually.

Ryan Our little Beast is doing just fine. Like all of the kids, he has started taking some rice cereal in his formula at least once a day (subject to daddy's schedule and fleeting memory!). He had his first baby shot from the pediatrician yesterday, a simple RSV (I think?) shot right in the tush! He was sleeping soundly and then was rudely waken, stripped to the diaper, and then stabbed in the check with a needle. If you've spent any time with Ryan, you already know how ticked off he was with that! Dr. Klipfel was wonderfully gentle, but I doubt Ryan would agree.

Ryan, and all of the babies were weighed again. Ryan now weighs 11 pounds, 12 ounces! He is getting so big. Unlike the other two babies, he is less fat. Don't get me wrong, he still has baby fat, but compared to the other two, he is a solid little guy. Meva says she can see the way his body is growing that he will be very much like me. That poor child will never find comfortable shoes!

Developmentally he is coming along fine. We are working wit
h him and strengthening his legs and back by getting him to stand and sit. He lacks the balance to do either on his own, but he is working hard to get there. It's funny to watch him try this as he gives out plenty of his trade mark grunts, snarls, and growls. He is also responding to our voices and he will smile a warm little, tight lipped smile for us. Meva calls it a cowboy smile, which I figure he does to try and keep the trail dust out of his mouth. He's also been known to give some giggles to his father from time to time.

Sarah If I had to choose just one word to describe her, it would have to be happy. Sarah is always smiling and grinning. She has several different smiles and she uses them often in a way that makes you think she knows what's going on around her and she's privy to the conversation. She is still holding on to the title of Biggest Baby as her current weight is 11 pounds, 14 ounces! She is huge!

Sarah is developing at a great rate. Like her brothers, she's holding her head up almost constantly. The most impressive thing she does is the duration of time she will spend standing upright with our support only for balance. I swear she can do it for over 2 full minutes at a time, I expect she will be crawling and trying to stand on her own by Christmas. Girls truly do develop faster than boys, which makes me excited to think about her in football pads!

The other bit of news about Sarah is that she is experiencing what I call pre-teething. Her hands are constantly in her mouth and she is drooling more and more each day. It's cute to watch he gnawing on her little fists, but I know the dark times are coming.

Perrin I almost don't know where to begin with him. On October 5th he had a regular check-up with his pediatrician and he was given a great report card. The next day however Meva and I saw signs that his Hydrocephaleus might be returning and we brought him to the ER right in the middle of my urology exam. He had thrown up unrelated to feeding, his soft spots were firm and bulging, he was crabby and his eating had been on the low side the previous few days. After getting a CT scan, the doctors determined he had considerable swelling in his brain and they elected to do brain surgery the very next morning.

Like the tough little guy that he is, he pulled
through it amazingly well! We had a brief scare when he developed colonic spasms that had us take him back to the hospital as a precaution, but they passed once he had a giant bowel movement. Otherwise he is awesome. In fact, in many ways he is like a totally different baby.

Prior to the surgery he wasn't very interactive and didn't smile very often. A few days after the surgery he started smiling and laughing more than we had ever seen him before. Ryan and Sarah has been smiling on command (interaction) for sometime now, but Perrin never really did. That is no longer the case as he is often just smiling and laughing and overall giving very happy faces to everyone. In addition his appetite has returned to tremendous levels and he is often in need of reigning in when we feed him. He will regularly try and drink 7 or 8 ounces at a feeding. It is his appetite that prompted Meva and I to introduce the cereal as a way of supplying him with more food and calories.

His scars are healing well and once we see a bit more improvement we will let him go without his bandages, but right now we are keeping them on because he likes to rub his head against things. Yesterday he weighed in at a whopping 11 pounds, 12 ounces just like Ryan. Those two have been going neck and neck trying to catch up to Sarah for weeks now, but my money is on Ryan being the biggest (But probably not the tallest) of them all when it's said and done.

This last picture of Perrin is from Monday night when he finally got a regular room in the Pediatrics wing. The picture doesn't do justice to how small and tiny he looked in that room. I felt so horrible when I got there because he was just laying there all alone. I was thankful that Meva and I were able to spend almost the entire time with him, only being away long enough for one to leave and the other to get there. Luckily the Bears were playing that night, so Perrin and I wore our Bears stuff and watched the game together, which was one of the most incredible games we've seen yet.

Considering how the blog site has been going down for maintanence and such I am going to end this here and take the opportunity to update this now.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

The Return

We've been gone a long time and much has happened. For those of you who weren't aware of what was going on, we had our account disabled by google and they have been just horrible in responding to our please for help or assistance. It's been almost 3 weeks now without word from them, so I have decided to take things into my own hands.

Presently I have set up a brand new blog, but if all of my work has been successful you wouldn't know this is a different blog by looking at it. I'm not really much of a programmer with HTML code and these templates, but I think I did a pretty good job of tweaking with this template to allow anyone to access the old one directly from here.

I know that there are far more people checking this blog out on a daily basis than I even know of as people have shared the URL to this site with others, and we are both thankful and appreciative of this. The one wrinkle this causes is that we can't possibly send out invites to everyone, so if you have ever sent the link to this blog to someone in the past I would ask you to take a few minutes and do that again. To make it easy, it's:

If any one has any trouble sending a link of this to someone, please let me know with an email. You can reach me directly at Chuck's Email . Thanks for that help!!

Today is Wednesday and the kids all have appointments to get their first shots at the pediatrician's office. Once we get back and I set Meva up with what she needs to do to post on this, we will fill everyone in with all of the exciting events of the last few weeks.

But before I go, I know everyone loves to see pictures of the kids, so here are a few new ones that we haven't yet had a chance to share.

The first picture here is of Sarah and Ryan. They were both a bit crabby this day so I sent them to bed early with their binkys. Once there they immediately calmed down and I decided to see if I could get a picture of them holding hands. Ryan held onto Sarah's little finger really well and they seemed to be getting on fine. About 10 minutes later Ryan started screaming bloody murder. When I ran in to see what had happened, Sarah had taken his binky away from him and was holding it in her two little hands and wouldn't let him have it back!! It was priceless and I wish I would have thought to get a pciture of that.

This next one here is of Perrin. He's a changed little boy and he was in a very good mood for me here, smiling and playing on him lambskin rug. We used to go days without a smile from Perrin, and even them they weren't really very big smiles. Now he smiles several times a day and laughs and plays like the other two kids. IN fact I was able to get him to smile for me today by talking to him and asking him for it, just like I do with Ryan and Sarah! With everything that little guy has beed through and overcome, I'm not ashamed to admit that I feel like crying because I am so overcome with joy!!

Speaking of smiles, here's our smiliest baby! It was one of the more recent bath times and I was trying to get a picture of Sarah smiling in her little duck towel. This picture was difficult to take because one; I was afraid Sarah would move real fast and slide off of the kitchen counter, and two: she was punching me and swinging her little fist around. I didn't even have to ask her to smile, she just thought it was funny to be punching me and basically doing her best to make my job more difficult. Yeah, her teen years are going to be a real treat!!!

This last one is Ryan, and it's actually our current desktop wallpaper on the computer. Despite how nice this picture turned out, I almost deleted it because I missed so much of what I was trying to capture. First off, he's actually dressed as a little pumpkin! He has an orange "onsie" on and the hat he's wearing is actually a pumpkin top hat! Perrin and Sarah were screaming their heads off about 3 feet away and I was very distracted trying to snatch a few photos before I began the feedings and changing of diapers. It's a great photo regardless and the way his hat looks on him reminds me of his great-grandpa Robert McKibben.

Well. that's it for now. You can see any of the images larger by clicking on them. We will both have more to write about in the coming days, so check back with us soon.