Tuesday, October 28, 2008

We Are Family!

After some blood, sweat, lots of tears, fingers crossed, toes crossed and $40, I got my pictures off my card!! Thanks for all the advice!

This video is pretty lengthy, but once I recovered the pictures, I wanted to show all of them!!

Now, to answer a few questions before you watch the video......

No, I couldn't find a bigger bow!!
Yes, I'm a little OCD!!
Yes, we have mauve countertops! Not our choice, but, hey, they work for now!!
Yes, everything is color coded. Purple is hard to find! If you find things pink, purple, blue and green, give me a shout out, please!!
Yes, I over complicate things to make them easier in the long run (or at least that's supposed to be how it works!)
Yes, we all loaded up and drove to Alabama to pick Avery up. We wanted to go as a family!
Yes, we all fit in the mini! 5 car seats!
Not that you would want to, but, no, there are no additional seats if you want to ride along!!


Sunday, October 26, 2008

A Week in the Life of The Cochran Family!

Here's our daily schedule.....

Monday through Friday
6:45 Matt leaves for work and drops Hannah Noelle of at preschool.
7:15 Andrea leaves for work.
8:00 Feed babies and all get medicine.
8:45-10:30 Nap Time (I do laundry, pick up around house and get ready for 10:30!)
10:30 - 11:00 Bath Time
11:00 Feed babies.
11:30 - 2:00 Play time! We do tummy time, turn on Baby Einsteins and whatever else we can do to keep them a little stimulated!
2:00 Feed babies and Lauren gets medicine.
2:30 - 5:00 Nap time in beds. I mean business about this nap time!
5:00 Feed Babies and Avery gets medicine. Andrea and Hannah Noelle make it home. Straight to bath for HN to get preschool germs washed down the drain!!
5:45 Matt gets home.
7:00 Make bottles for the following day, make sure everything is restocked and pack diaper bag if we're heading anywhere the next day.
8:00 Andrea, Matt and I feed babies and Cannon, Gunner and Lauren get medicine.
11:00 Matt and I feed babies.
11:00 - 2:00 I keep the baby monitor and I am responsible for any cries, apnea monitor beeps, etc.
2:00 Andrea's alarm goes off and she wakes me up and we "tag team" feed the babies and Lauren gets her medicine.
2:00 - 5:00 Andrea keeps the baby monitor and is responsible for babies.
5:00 Matt's alarm goes off and he wakes Andrea up and they "tag team" feed. Matt then gets dressed, gets HN dressed and the day starts all over again!!

Here's the extras that are added into our week......

Sunday, Hannah Noelle to church in the morning and family visitors over in the afternoon.
Monday, Normally doctor appt. day and Matt has football game at night.
Tuesday, Hannah Noelle has dance and tap.
Wednesday, Hannah Noelle has choir practice.
Thursday, Hannah Noelle has gymnastics.
Friday, Matt has football game.
Saturday, Normally always some party HN has to be at.

It's crazy, but a good crazy! I must admit it's a lot easier than having to go back and forth to Alabama to see the babies! It was so hard juggling two at home and then heading over there to see the girls.... oh, I didn't mention it, did I? WE'RE ALL HOME!!! I have tons of pictures to post, but for some reason my card has gone crazy and I'm crossing my fingers and toes and arms and legs that I didn't lose the pictures forever!!! (Any ideas would be appreciated! It says Memory Card Error.)
Anyone that knows HN knows she was a HORRIBLE baby, I mean the most horrible of horrible, even though it's really not a word, she was the horribliest!! I now understand why God made her be such a bad baby, it was so I could handle four. Not that I have got it figured out by any means, but even with four I'm getting more sleep than I did with her. She cried, oh excuse me, screamed, whaled, shrieked whether you were holding her, patting her, touching her, not touching her, it didn't matter, then at 5 months magically she became human!
Gunner and Lauren are AWESOME! They don't really cry unless it's something major. Avery is a little more vocal and wants you to know she's there every so often. Cannon is pretty rough! He cries sometimes just to hear himself cry. I'm going to blame it on a bad belly and hope that it resolves itself soon.
All in all I can't complain. I know it's going to get bad, I'm going to be drinking coffee like water, they'll go days without baths, as will I, but for right now, I'm just enjoying having everyone under one roof. Keeping up with Hannah Noelle's schedule is rough too, but I don't want her to miss out on things because of the babies, which leads me to this......
Andrea, I don't even know where to start. I cannot thank you enough. I sit in awe several times a day at the sacrifices you have made to make my life that much easier. I can honestly say we could not do it without you! If it's not the babies you're helping with it's Hannah Noelle. I joke and call you the Nanny, but you're way more than that, your a house keeper, bottle washer, HN's butt wiper, I could go on and on, but first and foremost, you are the most amazing sister, sister-in-law, Aunt and friend anyone could EVER ask for! We all LOVE you very much!!!
I hope to post pictures soon!!! I will cry for several days if I lost all my pictures!! Until next time, Love to you all!!!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

YOU ROCK.......


I don't even know where to begin to thank the most awesome nurse in the world!! There are some nurses that I'm not even real sure what their names are, others I wish I didn't know their names, some I'll remember for a month or two and others that will forever have a place in my heart! My relationship with Shelley started when Cannon was moved to Progressive Care. She was his nurse and would always tell me sweet things he had done or facial expressions he made throughout the day when I wasn't there. Then Gunner moved in to PC and she took him under her wing as well. Next was Lauren. I would love it when I would call and ask for one of their nurses and Shelley would answer. It's not your typical answer of, she or he's fine, no new orders, it's, you won't believe the face she just made, you should have smelled the diaper that Gunner had, Cannon is trying to climb out of his isolette. Those moments mean so much to every NICU mom and dad. There have been several photo-ops that we have missed either being home with the boys or before they were home, being here with Hannah Noelle, but Ms. Shelley didn't miss them. She snapped those pictures and e-mailed them to me within hours of getting off work. She is also responsible for letting me hold the boys together for the first time, Cannon and Lauren together and then, today, Avery and Lauren together!!! Nurse Shelley, YOU ROCK!!

Now, for those of you who have been paying close attention to the blog you are probably wondering, how in the world did you get Avery and Lauren together since Avery's Pod has been in isolation. Well, they opened her Pod up and Lauren had to be moved out of PC becuase she had hernia surgery today. Ms. Shelley heard the news and got things in order to get Lauren with her sister. She even made sure their beds were next to each other. Shelley was Lauren's nurse today before and after surgery and my sanity between it all! Lauren is recovering well and looked really good after surgery! Here's a few pictures from Ms. Shelley and some I've taken over the last few days! Enjoy!!!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Jealous Bones!!

Well, folks, we've had our first sign of jealous bones!! It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be though. Hannah Noelle and Jayce's picture has always been the wallpaper on my sister's phone (Pae-Pae.) Well, Andrea loved the picture from the last post of the boys wrapped up in their towels so she put that as her wallpaper. HN opened her phone this morning and saw the picture. Andrea and I both just sat and stared to see what she would say both realizing at that moment that changing the picture was not such a good idea. I was so proud of what Hannah Noelle said though. She looked at the phone and said, Pae-Pae can I please use your phone for a minute? Andrea said, sure, why? HN said, because I want to take a picture of me with my brothers. That was her sweet and subtle way of saying, how dare you have their picture and not mine. Needless to say, the screen saver is now a picture of two babies being held by their big sister!!!
Cannon (4 pounds, 10 ounces) and Gunner (5 pounds, 4 ounces) are both doing awesome at home. Their apnea monitors have been a huge stress reliever for me. The first few days it was hard to get used to the wires, the beeps, positioning, etc., but now it's peace of mind!! Cannon is on Zantac and Reglan for reflux and it has made a HUGE difference. Gunner is on Zantac and it has also made a difference in the amount of spit up from him.
Lauren should break 4 pounds today or tomorrow and will be put in a crib. She still battles heart rate drops so she is still on her caffeine stimulant. She also has a small hernia which, when she is put in a crib, will be assessed by the surgeon and it will be decided then whether she will require surgery or not. Does this little girl want all the attention or what?!?
Avery is 4 pounds, 5 ounces, can you say chunky monkey?!? She is off of her caffeine stimulant and should be put in a crib sometime today. The medicine they are making all the babies in her Pod take because of the IDIOT with TB causes her to have really loose stools! Just what I needed, a baby that poo's up her back!! All together once again, IDIOT!! She is doing great and we expect her home within the next week or so!
Matt and I are managing very well thanks to my sister and my mom who have been taking night shifts for the last three nights. We shut our door, turn the fan on high and sleep like rocks!! Tonight is our night with the boys so I'm sure they'll decide to throw a party in their crib! We are all in a wedding this weekend, Matt, myself, HN and Andrea. It is going to be exciting to see if Hannah Noelle actually walks down the aisle! My best friend Valerie will be keeping the boys. She said she could do it on her own and didn't need another sitter with her. I can't decide if she's stupid or just really sweet!! Just kidding Valerie, I love you! You're just getting ready for your babies! Yes, for those of you who have been waiting on her results, her IVF was successful and she is expecting one, maybe two babies, we'll know more next Friday. Valerie was actually in the room with Matt and myself when I had the IUI that resulted in my precious babies! She was there for one of her first appointments and she came in to see what it was all about. How funny, my best friend was sitting in my husband's lap when our babies were conceived!! Oh, the stories we can tell!!
I'll post pictures of the wedding and some of the girls after this crazy weekend is over! Oh, did I mention Hannah Noelle's birthday party is Sunday too!?! We decided in June to have it a month early so that maybe all four babies wouldn't be home and because we knew our family would be down for the wedding and they could all join us at the party! She's so excited, but will be way confused when in a month she has a birthday again!!
Any of you that don't read the Tubre's blog, tubrequads.blogspot.com, go check it out and help them sale their house! I don't know that I can survive with out my Cupcake updates!!! Love to you all!!!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Sweet Home Mississippi!!

Hello Everyone!! We've had two babies home since Tuesday and it has been controlled chaos! We are so happy to have the boys home and patiently waiting for the girls to join us. We have somewhat devised a schedule and so far it's working great! We have feeding time down to a science for two, 17 minutes of science actually. What scares me is that 17 minutes is for two diaper changes, 40 cc's each and two burps each. In the next month we'll be doubling the amount of diaper changes, going up on feeds and have more babies to burp. I'm in for over an hour, I'm sure. So, then you figure, an hour to feed and you HAVE to feed them every three hours, so I only have two hours to do everything else. You know what though, laundry can wait, making the beds can wait, when I need sleep, I sleep, when I need baby lovin, I get baby lovin!!
Here's info on everyone!!
Cannon - When released from the NICU he weighed 4 pounds, 6 ounces. Two days later at his 1st doctor's appointment he weighed in at 4 pounds, 10 ounces, yeah, I'm doing something right!! He has some trouble with gas and has reflux. I know, I know, all preemies have some form of reflux, but his is the gut wrenching screaming cry as it comes up reflux. Dr. Gina, whom I ABSOLUTELY LOVE, has put this little man on Zantac and I'm already noticing a difference! ~ So to explain the absolutely love part when talking about their pediatrician, I called today with the 1st of many freak outs because Gunner's monitor kept going off for problems with his breathing. She had the nurse explain a few things to me, talk me off the ledge, reposition him and wala, he was fine. That's not even the good part. She had the nurse call me back to make sure I had her personal contact info in case I needed her over the weekend or at any time. Then about two hours later she called herself to check on the boys and called again tonight to check on them. I must say, there aren't many doctors like her!! We love you Dr. Gina!!! ~ Now, back to updates.

Gunner - Gunner's first visit at the doc he weighed 4 pounds, 10 ounces and six days later at his weight check.....drum roll, please... 5 pounds, 1 ounce! That boy loves his groceries!! He is doing great all the way around and, by far, the most complacent baby I've ever known. I'm knocking on wood as I write this!

Lauren - She has been off the nasal canula for two days now, so we're stepping closer to breaking free from the NICU! She is still a little lazy with her feeds and is not real interested in the bottle. When she does decide to try to take it, it wears her out and they end up putting the rest through her tube. She'll get it all together soon and then she'll be hanging out with her brothers and big sister! As of last check her weight was 3 pounds, 10 ounces.

Avery - She failed her TB test! It's the first and probably last time I'll be happy she failed a test! Go Avery Go!! She will still need to be on the medicine for 3 months as a preventative measure. Let's say it together one more time, IDIOT! (If you didn't get that or are confused about the TB test, read the last post!) Avery is up to 3 pounds, 14 ounces. She is taking a few feeds by bottle, but not ready to give up the feeding tube completely! She is also off of nasal canula! I hate she can't move down to Progressive Care with her sister, she's all alone in Pod 3. I'm sure she's made some friends though! Let say it again, IDIOT!! She can't move out of Pod 3 until she goes home because of that IDIOT! I keep trying to remind myself that no one would intentionally harm these precious babies so I shouldn't call them an Idiot, but I just can't help it!

And Now For The Pictures!!

G-Man breaking free from the NICU!
Gunner's first bath at home!
Cannon busting out of the NICU!Love this picture! They were both looking up at me!! Good job daddy, snapping that shot so fast!
They don't look anything alike, do they?
Gunner resembles Kermit and Cannon resembles a 90-year old man!
They're still beautiful to me, though!!

Wake up, buddy, this is supposed to be our tummy time!!

Hope you all like the pictures of the boys, can't wait to post some of the girls at home! Please leave comments for the boys, I would love to print them and put them in their scrapbooks that their Aunt K-Pae will be making them one day!

Love, The Cochrans!