Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Snip Snip

Today was the big day. The day Shae and I have been (somewhat) dreading for about two weeks. That's right, today was the day Jack got circumcised. We were hoping to get this taken care of while we were in the hospital, but the doctor wanted to wait until Jack was over 6 lbs before giving him the snip.

The appointment was today, so at 11:30 Shae and I were sitting in the lobby of the doctor's office waiting to head back to the little exam room. As we were waiting, another set of new parents commented on the twins and made the "wow...I can't even imagine two" comment (we get that a lot). They were there for their first exam with their 6-day-old baby. I've only had kids for 3 weeks and I was already thinking, "I remember those days." Well, that and "Please don't wake up babies. Please don't wake up."

Eventually they called Jack's name and we went on back to our exam room. We stripped down Jackson, got him weighed (6 lbs, 11 oz) and then did some more waiting until the doctor showed. up. Without going into too much detail, they threw some disinfectant on his "region", gave him a painkiller shot (Lidocaine), and then trimmed his junk. Shae and I didn't really watch, but we did glance over from time to time to see how things were going. The highlight was when the doctor was putting on the little ring thing after the snipping and we heard, "That doesn't fit. We better get a bigger one. Yeah, that's better." Just saying.

After a bit of crying, Jack is doing OK. He still isn't very happy whenever we change his diaper, but he's going to be fine. However, tonight during bath time we discovered a serious consequence of Jack's junk-cut: his range has drastically increased. Before diaper changes were exciting, but the most damage he normally did was to pee all over his outfit (to the extent where yesterday Shae took away his clothing privileges and left him in a diaper the rest of the day because she got sick and tired of changing his outfit every time she changed a diaper), but tonight as he was sitting in the bathtub on the dining room table he let loose and managed to fire a shot that landed just short of our couch (about 10 feet away). A little squirt hit right next to Lunchbox and startled him. I think it's pretty safe to assume that things are about to get a lot wetter around the house.

Sunday, October 26, 2008


A long time ago (like 2 weeks), the lactation consultant at the hospital told us to expect a growth spurt from the babies when they were about 10 days old. She warned us that they would be hungry all the time and not to worry, just keep feeding them. At about 10 days, we noticed they both had started eating a lot more and thought they had hit the growth spurt. We were wrong. At about 2.5 weeks (or a couple of days ago) Ella hit the "real" growth spurt and last night Jack did the same.

This is ridiculous. Pretty much every second they're awake both of them are crying for food (well, Ella cries, Jake squeaks for a while before giving up and letting us know he's serious). We feed them, they're quiet for about 10 minutes and then it starts up again. I feel sorry for Shae's boobs, and I'm starting to worry about the motor in our pump. There was a span of about five hours this afternoon where both of them were wide awake and hungry. Then they slept for about four hours and then woke up screaming for food again. According to Shae's Internet research this whole eat for hours, sleep for hours thing is called "Cluster feeding". All I know is it's super fun.

Of course, this giant increase in the babies' appetites comes with a bonus: a matching jump in their diaper usage. I thought these little things were crapping a lot before, but this is crazy. On Friday we bought a new 92-pack of diapers. In under 36 hours they went through about 50 of them. Holy crap! Seriously...that's a crapload of poop. Costco doesn't carry newborn diapers, and it seems like they don't make the jumbo packs of them (or at least they don't have them at Costco or Babies "R" Us). I guess the logic is that people don't stock up on them because the babies grow out of them so fast. Obviously they need to talk to more twin parents.

In other fun, we took a little family field trip yesterday. Shae and I, Lunchbox, and the twins all piled into the car and headed over to the dog park to get LB some exercise. Shae sat outside at a picnic table and fed the babies (seriously, they are eating constantly) while I took Mr. Box into the park to have some fun. I'm sure everyone will be happy to hear that he didn't hump any of the other dogs and got nice and dirty.

Oh, Jack's diaper rash is gone. I guess Butt Paste is more than just a funny name. That's about it to report right now. I just heard Ella go through diaper 51 so I guess I better go change her.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Daddy and his Babies

Yup, more photos today. This time I wanted to get some pictures of Pat with the munchkins. The full album can be seen here. The ones below are a few of my favorites.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Jack's Red Butt

So, little Jackson has diaper rash. Know what that means? It's Butt Paste time! I'm way too excited to pop open the tube of Butt Paste.

Babies in Blankets

Today our babies had their first professional photo shoot. I actually found a photographer on Craigslist who does awesome newborn photos and she was looking for twins for her portfolio. There was no sitting fee and we get a free 8x10. In anticipation for this shoot I figured I should get the babies used to the camera so I broke out my good camera and started doing some photos. Grandma Allen knitted some wonderful blankets for the babies that I used for the backdrop. Both Jack and Ella were a little too awake when I did this, but I still got some pretty good shots. I will try again when they are both sleepy so I can get them both in the same picture. Here are a few of my favorites. The rest can be seen here.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

One Week Home

Yesterday marked one full week since we brought the babies home from the hospital. It's been an eventful week, but we're finally getting into some sort of routine. My mom and Shae's parents were here through Thursday, so the last couple of days we've been trying to figure out how to do everything on our own. We're actually getting quite a bit more sleep than I thought we would, even if our kids have their day and night confused (as Shae detailed in her post). The first few nights were rough, but the last few we've been able to sleep most of the night (with the obvious breaks for feeding and changing). We had their first doctor's appointment (well, first one outside of the hospital) and they are both doing great.

I think the most interesting part of the week is how different our kids are. I've never been a fan of babies, especially newborns. They just seem to eat, sleep, and crap. Everyone told me that I'd feel differently about my own kids (and I do), but I still figured it would take a while before we'd get a feel for their different personalities. Boy was I wrong.

Just looking at the twins it's obvious they're very different. Ella is covered in her dark hair and darker complexion, while Jack has about as much hair as I do (and his skin color is about the same too). However, it's their personalities that are completely opposite.

Jackson is the sweetest little thing. He lays next to us on the couch (or in his bouncer, bassinet, crib, car seat, whatever) and makes the cutest little squeaks. The few hours a day he's awake and alert he has some great little expressions and faces, including one that looks like Zoolander's "Blue Steel". Of course, I never have a camera handy when he's making his faces so all the pics we have of him are when he's asleep. With the exception of the first night home when he didn't have enough blankets Jack has yet to let out more than a one or two second cry, just enough to let us know he needs a little attention. Then it's back to laying there and looking cute.

Then there's Ella. I love my daughter, but she is not quite as quiet as my little boy. She is quite the crier. If she's unhappy she lets everyone know about it. She's a little colicky and it seems to hit her worst as soon as we go to bed. We feel so bad for her because we can tell she's in pain and her stomach hurts. We've been using some anti-gas drops that seem to help quite a bit, but she still has her bouts and there isn't much we can do except try our best to help her feel a little better. On the bright side, when she sleeps she's really cute and has some funny little snores.

That's about it for now. It's time for bed so I'm looking forward to the next round of Ella's crying. Tomorrow is football day, so I better go get some rest. I'm sure tomorrow will hold more fun with diapers and bottles.

Night and Day

Time for an update from mommy. There are things people seem to leave out while describing what it's like to enter the adventure of parenthood. We learned at our classes that babies will be changed on average 8 times a day. What they don't tell you is that each changing can take up to 4 diapers. I always figured you take off the diaper, wipe things clean and then put on a new one. Nope. I was wrong. It's more like take off the diaper, wipe things clean, try and put on a new diaper only to have the baby pee or poop all over the place ruining the new diaper and their outfit. So then you have to start the process all over again and then once the new diaper is on they decide to poop all over it again. Start the process over and go through another couple diapers before things are finally nice and clean. On this same subject, people don't tell you about the projectile pooping. Our little girl managed to spray the wall 3 feet from the changing table. Our precious baby boy decided to spray my arm, but at least he missed his diaper. Our diaper genie seems to get filled up way too fast.

Another thing people tell you is that babies need to be fed. Well yeah, everyone knows that. But why does it have to take an hour to feed them. You have to get the bottle filled, heat it up and start feeding them. Jack does OK with the whole eating thing even though it takes a while. Ella on the other hand seems to forget how to eat. she will suck on the bottle for about 10 minutes and then I will check it it only to find out she had not sucked out a single drop. It can take her an hour to eat 2 ounces of food. Do you know what that does to my TV watching time?

Night and day. I know newborns keep parents up at night, but I think ours have their nights and days all mixed up. during the day all they do is sleep. We have to force them awake just to eat and even then they never fully wake up. Right before we go to bed they seem to know what time it is because they decide to wake up needing attention. Do you know how hard it is to get them back to sleep after having slept all day long. Very.

I guess other then that things are going well. I am recovering pretty fast so I can actually get up when my babies need me. I am sure Pat will be givin his perspective on things soon.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Mr. Box's Babies

One of the things we were kind of worried about while Shae was pregnant was how Lunchbox would handle the babies. We know labs are great with kids and he has always loved being around kids, but we were still a little anxious about how he would handle having his world rocked. Until last week, LB was pretty much the center of our world. He was our little puppy and didn't have any competition for our attention. Obviously that's not the case anymore.

It turns out we didn't need to worry about Lunchbox. He was a little hesitant about the babies at first, but within a few minutes he got over that and moved on to being a protective older brother. It's really funny/sweet to watch. The other day a door slammed and startled the Box. He jumped up and immediately ran over to the couch (where the babies were sleeping) to make sure Jack and Ella were OK. Whenever one of the babies (Ella) has one of their (her) screaming fits Lunchbox goes to check things out. At night, he camps out in front of their bassinet to make sure no one hurts his babies. Well, he starts out there; eventually he heads over to his bed. He might have babies to watch, but that doesn't mean he has to sleep on the floor. Lunchbox may not be an only child anymore, but he's still our spoiled little puppy.

Also, we uploaded some more pics of the kids so check the gallery.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

First Night Home

Last night was our first night home with the twins, and I can't believe I'm saying this but I kind of miss the hospital. Don't get me wrong, we're very happy to be home. The food's better, the bed's more comfortable (mine at least, Shae misses her adjustable hospital bed), the TV's a lot bigger, and the Internet access isn't restricted to Gmail and CNN (in other words, I can access my fantasy football teams). Still, it was kind of nice to have nurses around to help with the babies and take care of Shae. Also, last night we really could have used the 2-hour break when the nurse would take the babies out to run tests on them.

I don't know if it was because we had both babies back together, or that it was a little cold in our room last night, or some other reason, but last night was not what I would call super. Jackson is usually pretty mellow, but last night he was a very unhappy baby boy. Combined with Ella's standard fussiness the babies were screaming most of the night. Shae was in quite a bit of pain, which didn't make things any easier. Eventually the babies settled down for a couple of hours of sleep and we survived, but it was the longest night yet (out of a whole four).

Of course, the night wasn't all bad. It started of with a chain of events that was just ridiculous at the time but probably should have foreshadowed the night ahead.

We set up the twins' bassinet in our bedroom about a week ago and had it all ready. It's not the easiest thing to get the mattress set up, but we had it all made up with new sheets just waiting for the babies. Of course, the second we put Ella down in her bassinet we heard the all-to-familiar explosive sound of my daughter ruining a diaper.

Going into this whole baby thing I was under the assumption that Jackson would be the baby to pee all over the place. Boy was I wrong. Jack does his part, but Ella seems to find a way to pee on everything around her every time her diaper comes off. This time was no exception as she found a way to soak her new diaper, her sleeper, the pad we put down to keep the sheets and mattress dry, and she somehow managed to make a mess of the sheets too. After going through the entire process of changing the sheet on the bassinet (which is a lot more work than I expected), it was time to try again to put the babies to bed.

Now it was Jack's turn. As soon as I put the babies down on their fresh sheets Jack started fussing. A quick look verified that sure enough he had made quite a mess down there. Not to be outdone by his older sister, just when I was almost done changing him Jack followed Ella's lead and peed all over his sleeper and new diaper. After another change of sleeper and diaper, Jack took things to the next level by exploding all over yet another diaper. Now, I'm not sure where he stores all the urine in his little tiny body, but somehow he manged to pee all over yet another sleeper during the third change.

At this point, Shae and I were pretty much on the ground laughing. Of course, Shae's still recovering from her surgery so every time she laughs it hurts. You know how Ella responded to our laughing? I'll give you a hint: it rhymes with "schmit her schmipers". Basically, every time we touched one of our kids they pissed or crapped all over themselves. By the time this whole thing was over, we had a pile of filthy diapers, a bigger pile of pee covered clothes, and a wife in need of some percocet. Good times.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Jaundiced Jack

Well, apparently Jackson's bilirubin levels (thank you Google) were too high on his jaundice test so he had to go camp out in a blue tanning booth for a while. They tested him a 4 a.m. yesterday, and then re-tested him around 11 and his levels were still a little high so they took him upstairs to the pediatric hospital around 4 p.m.. I know this is pretty common (both Shae and I cooked under the lights for a while when we were babies), but it still isn't fun to have him in a different part of the hospital and it's still kind of sad to look over at his empty little bassinet.

I spent most of last night feeding/changing Ella, then heading upstairs to feed Jack. He's definitely got a nice little setup upstairs, and he's pretty cute in his eye covers. He looks like he's just lying in a tanning booth (except for the fact that it's blue). The nice part about the whole thing is that they take a plate of food to his room each meal so I get some of the awesome hospital food that Shae has been enjoying for the past few days.

It's about 10:30 on Friday morning right now, and Shae and Ella both have discharge papers (for whatever that's worth), so they should be able to leave soon. I've already packed up all the extra diapers, wipes, burp rags, blankets, etc. (they're lucky I left the towels) so we're just waiting for the OK and then we'll be gone. By "be gone" I mean that we'll head upstairs and camp out in Jack's room for a bit. The doctor is supposedly stopping by sometime around noon to take another look at Jackson (he checked in on him earlier this morning) and hopefully he can be discharged shortly after.

So we should be heading home sometime this afternoon, and then the fun begins. There will be some more pictures uploaded once I get home.

Here's a pic of my little boy in his blue tanning booth:

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Day 2

Well, the babies are 36 hours old and seem to be doing just fine. A few "highlights" from the past day and a half.
  • It didn't take long for Jackson to pee on both Shae and me. He got me yesterday the second time I changed him and got Shae this evening the first time she took his diaper off. Glad we got that out of the way.

  • The lactation consultant stopped by today. This was another time I wasn't booted out of the room but wished I had been. It was pretty awkward watching the consultant analyze and comment on my wife's nipples. Awk. Ward.

  • Last night around 3am our nurse took the babies to the nursery to do some tests on them. Our nurse recently informed us that she's going to need to take them in a little bit to get tested for jaundice. She told us that we're free to go with the babies and watch if we want. Now I love my babies, but if someone wants to take them away for an hour or so I'm not going to waste the opportunity to grab some sleep. Somehow they sleep all day but manage to wake up the second I climb into "bed" (a chair/bed monstrosity that I think is causing me long-term back problems. it's awesome).

  • Shae is doing much better today (that could have something to do with the large amounts of percocet and ibuprofen she's on). She's not nauseous anymore and is moving around OK. They pulled out her catheter, IV, compression cuffs, etc so she's no longer tethered to the bed. Now she can get up and move over to my chair/bed thing. Super.

  • Everyone that comes in asks if Shae has farted and seems to be really excited that she had a little toot earlier. I'm not sure they'd be so excited if they had ever been around her after banana smoothies.
That's about it for now. Shae's parents and my mom get into town tomorrow so the babies get to meet some grandparents. We will probably be heading home Friday morning so that will be nice. Hopefully we'll have some more updates and pictures soon.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Baby Day

So, today was the day we finally got to meet Jackson and Ella. The twins were born at 7:52 am (Ella) and 7:53 am (Jackson), both 19 inches. Ella weighed in at 6lbs, 6.4oz and Jackson was 5lbs 14.8oz. So far everything is great and Shae is doing OK although she's still feeling the after effects of the anesthesia. I have uploaded some pictures of the babies and more will be uploaded as we take them. (For whatever reason, the hospital's WiFi access doesn't allow me to go access the site where I store my photos so I have to go home to upload any new ones which means they won't be updated as much as I would like). If that's not enough for you, here's a little recap of the day.

4:15 a.m.
Alarm goes off. Lunchbox decides that since the alarm has gone off it's time for his breakfast even though it's almost two hours early. When we don't feed him he's really disappointed. If only he knew what he was in for.

5:30 a.m.
Somehow we arrive at the hospital on time. When I hand in the paperwork for our monthly parking pass to the attendant, she recognizes Shae's name and wishes her good luck with the twins (I had already dropped Shae off at the hospital entrance). I think it's safe to say Shae has been coming here a lot.

After parking and hiking back up to the entrance, we check in with the guard. When we inform him that Shae's here for her C-Section he tells her to head over to the admittance desk. When I try to follow her, I'm told I have to sign in and get a visitor's badge. After Shae fills out all of her paperwork, they take her back to a birthing room to prep her for surgery. This time when I try to follow I'm told to have a seat in one of the lobby chairs and that a nurse will come to get me in about 15 minutes. I'm starting to think this day isn't all about me.

6:00 a.m.
After about 20 minutes of sitting in the lobby, the lady at the admittance desk yells over to me that I can head in to Shae's birthing room and I head in. While I was staring at the fire sprinklers in the lobby Shae had changed into a gown and started her prep. I guess they kept me in the lobby so I didn't see Shae change. Based on the reason we're here, I think it's a safe assumption that I've seen her naked. Anyway, the nurse hands me a bag with an awesome paper jump suit, booties, a hair net, and a mask. I feel like a surgeon with all my gear.

What they should have done while I was in the lobby was put in Shae's IV. Apparently she has really small veins and it was not fun watching the nurses try to put in her IV. They got it in eventually, but that was a few minutes I would have rather been watching the guard try to stay awake. After the IV was in, Shae's doctor came by to check in and then the anesthesiologist popped in to tell her about all the fun stuff he was going to give her.

7:30 a.m.
It's finally time for the surgery, so Shae heads off to the OR and I get sent to a new room. At least this one had magazines, even if they are several months old (Sports Illustrated thinks Michael Phelps has a pretty good chance to win 8 gold medals...we'll see). The 15 minutes I'm supposed to wait turns into more like 30 (I later found out that they were having trouble giving Shae her anesthesia and it took longer than normal), but eventually a nurse comes in and leads me to the OR.

7:52 a.m.
About a minute after I walk into the room, Ella comes out followed closely by Jackson. I'm officially a dad. After the nurses do some cleanup on the babies, I get to go take a look at them and take a few pictures. My favorite is the one where Ella is flipping Jackson off (I'd provide a link, but since I can't get to the site right now, you'll just have to go to the gallery and look at all of the pictures).

After another minute or two, the nurses brought the twins over to Shae so she could see them. After about 30 seconds (just enough time for the anesthesiologist to take a couple of pics), the babies and I were whisked out of the OR and into the NICU (I carried Ella).

8:00 a.m.
The next 2.5 hours were pretty weird. I hung around the NICU for a little bit, but I was pretty much just in the way and I could only stand there and watch them do tests for so long before I decided to go make phone calls. After one of the nurses tracked down Shae's purse (which had my phone) I made my calls. Once that was done, it was back to watching the babies get poked for a while, but after a few minutes of that I decided I should go find our stuff. I found our bags at the nurses' station and they told me where Shae's recovery room was going to be so I grabbed everything and took it downstairs to our new room.

So now I have all of our stuff in our new room downstairs, but the babies are still upstairs in the NICU and I don't know where Shae is or when she'll be brought down. I made a few trips back and forth to the NICU, but I was still in the way and now all of our stuff was sitting in an empty room downstairs so I didn't really want to leave it unattended too long. So basically, I spent a couple of hours alternating between sitting in an empty room downstairs and trying to stay out of nurses' ways upstairs. Fun.

10:30 a.m.
Finally, Shae got wheeled into the room. Of course, the first thing the nurses did when they brought her in was boot me out of the room so they could move her to the bed. At this point, I'm almost positve this day is not about me. Oh well, at least I'll see my babies soon.

1:00 p.m.
The babies finally get wheeled into our room. Five hours after Shae had the babies she finally got to hold them and get a good look at them. It may just be the fact that they're my kids, but I have to say the twins are pretty damn cute. I usually think babies are pretty funny looking, but mine are just cute.

The rest of the day was pretty much just hanging out in the room taking care of the twins. Shae was really naseous from the anesthesia and couldn't even sit up very well. I somehow ended up taking care of all the diapers and using a dropper to feed the babies formula. I snuck away for a little bit to get some non-hospital food and play with Lunchbox. In the afternoon/evening we got vists from Erica, Chris, Sharon, and Katheryn and phone calls, texts, etc from just about everyone. Eventually things quieted down and we even found a few minutes to get some sleep between baby feeding and changing.

That's about it for now. Hopefully I'll have time to post some updates in the next day or two, but I think the babies are going to keep me busy.

Monday, October 6, 2008

39 Weeks

Less than 12 hours to babies. Here's a picture of Shae at 39 weeks:

Sunday, October 5, 2008

One More Day

Well, it's just about that day. Friday was my last day at work so now there's nothing for us to do except sit around and wait for Tuesday morning. We had a pretty laid back weekend, but I did manage to get over to the La Mesa Oktoberfest. Erica and I hopped on the trolley, grabbed some bratwurst, sauerkraut, and German potato salad and then brought home a bratwurst for Shae.

We've got a few last things to take care of tomorrow (putting in car seats, making sure everything is charged, some cleanup, etc), but mostly we're just trying to relax a little while we still can. Then Tuesday morning it's off to meet some babies.

It's kind of weird knowing that in less than 36 hours we're going to have two kids. I thought I would be really nervous or excited, but I'm just kind of anxious. At this point I'm just ready for the kids to be here. For the past month we've just been waiting for the twins to decide they were ready to come out. I'm sure I'll get nervous and excited tomorrow night or Tuesday morning, but right now I'm just tired of waiting and am ready to meet my kids already.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Stickers and Babies

Since I refuse to drive a mini-van, I needed a place to put my mini-van sticker so here it is.

In other news, we finally have our official c-section date. We will be going in on October 7th at 7:30 am. We actually have to be there at 5:30 to check in and get prepped and all that fun stuff. Pat and I decided that we wont be getting any sleep Monday night. Of course I can always go into labor early! I hope not though. I don't want to deal with any of the pain. We will keep you posted.