Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Shining the spotlight on Itty Bitty

Itty Bitty was born at 1lb7oz, 11.5 inches long. From his shoulders to his feet was barely longer than my hand.  He was so tiny.  He's still tiny for a 8.5 month old baby.  Right now he weighs about 9 pounds.  Tiny, right?  Well, things are about to change.  Let me give you a little back story...

When the bees were born, both of them were intubated, received surfactant, and monitored very closely for breathing patterns and blood oxygen saturation.  Even though I had received 2 rounds of steroid shots to mature their lungs, these things were expected and normal.  Chunky Bee was breathing on his own without any support with in 48 hours.  Itty Bitty didn't fair quite as well.  He was intubated for just over 48 hours and then moved to a nasal CPAP machine.  Later that week, he was off the CPAP and was receiving extra oxygen in his isolette.  All things seemed to be moving in the right direction.  Then when he was 1 week old, Itty Bitty went back to the CPAP, had a complete work up including a lumbar puncture, and was put on antibiotics for a suspected infection.  Luckily there wasn't an infection, but we played this game time and time again.  After 28 days (4 weeks) of receiving oxygen support, Itty Bitty was diagnosed with BPD, a chronic lung condition in children.  Very common for micropreemies like Itty Bitty.

Eventually, Itty Bitty gained enough weight to be moved to an open air crib (aka "Big Boy Bed") and was started receiving oxygen support via a nasal canula.  At this point he was about 3 months old.  I just knew he'd be home in no time.  I was visiting Itty Bitty one night while Honey Bee stayed home with Chunky Bee & Princess Bee.  Itty Bitty seemed "off".  Not fussing, not sick, but just not himself.  I talked to his nurse and she convinced me to go home and she would talk to the doctors when they rounded at 10 pm.  She promised to call me after rounds.  I agreed -- I mean I had 2 other kids at home that needed me as well.  The nurse, L, convinced the doctors to start with Itty Bitty because she knew I was waiting up for the phone call.  She called around 10:15 and told me that the attending wanted to run a new test on Itty Bitty because he thought he may know what was going on.  At this point, Itty Bitty was receiving 1 Liter of oxygen at 65% per minute {I realize this may not mean anything to you, but you'll see the importance very soon.  Stick with me.}  Around midnight, one of the NICU doctors called and told us that Itty Bitty had been moved from the Continuing Care Nursery (for feeders & growers) back to the NICU.  The test they run showed that Itty Bitty had developed Pulmonary Hypertension.  She went over the meds and therapies they had started to treat it.  She assured me that they caught it early and had a handle on things.

Fast forward to noon the next day...Honey Bee and I go to visit Itty Bitty and he is the sickest I've seen him since birth.  He was still on his nasal cannula, but was receiving 7 Liters at 100% per minute.  A huge jump in just over 12 hours.  Luckily, the meds and therapies helped Itty Bitty get better quickly.  He stayed in the NICU for at least a month after this because I would fight the staff every time they suggested he was ready to go back down to CCN.

After 4.5 months in the NICU, Itty Bitty was discharged.  He came home on oxygen and a cocktail of medicines.  But he was finally home!  No more visiting my kid at the hospital.  At discharge, Itty Bitty weighed 6lb12oz.  Today he weighs in around 9 pounds.  We've been told from the beginning that healthy weight gain is what will help Itty Bitty outgrow his BPD and PHT.  Well, 2.5 pounds is really not much progress in 3.5 months.  So after talking with several doctors and doing TONS of research, Honey Bee and I agreed to let modern medicine intervene again.

Itty Bitty had surgery last week to have a feeding tube place.  On average, Itty Bitty would take 12 oz of 27 calorie breastmilk per day.  Now that he has his feeding tube, he's taking in 21-22 oz per day. After he goes to bed for the night, we hook him up to a feeding pump.  Right now, he's getting about 10 oz per night over the pump.  It goes in at a slow rate and he seems to be doing well with it.

I'll share later about the type of tube he has and how easy it is to use (well, so far at least).

Friday, November 18, 2011

My birth story

If you've spent much time on message boards or reading blogs, it seems that everyone writes her birth story shortly after her baby(ies) are born.  I guess for most people it's joyous and they can't wait to share the tale of how their little one entered the world.

Well, I'm not most people.  I've sat down many times to "write" my birth story.  I say "write" because I know how it happened.  I'm not a writer of fictional novels and tales.  Writers develop their plot, they have the "perfect ending" in mind.  My storyline didn't go as planned.  The birth of my bees was not "storybook perfect".  I had NO control of when and how my bees entered the world.  I had NO control over the first few weeks of their lives.  There are still many things with Itty Bitty's health that are out of my control.

When I've attempted to put the story into words, I get stuck.  I can't find the right words to describe the overwhelming feelings of pain, fear, anger and jealousy that I felt when I found out the bees would be born 10 weeks early.  I had just over 48 hours to brace myself for the fact that I would have two micropreemies, send months going back and forth to visit my children in the NICU and to mentally prepare for the challenges we would face.

I'm not ready to put it into words.  The bees are 8 months old.  I've holding it in for 8 months and I keep telling myself "Oh, I'll write it down next week...", but it never happens.  Hopefully as we overcome some major challenges in the coming weeks and months, I will finally be able to "write" my birth story.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

World Prematurity Day

I've been thinking about this post for a while now.  I've thought about the various angles to write from.  I've thought about all the facts about premature births that I should help spread.  I've thought about this post a lot...

Today I am wearing purple.  I'm honoring my little bees and their fight for life.  I'm remembering babies that were born too soon that didn't win the fight.  When I think about that possibility for my bees, a knot instantly forms in my stomach.  I wonder why were my bees able to be saved, but other babies aren't.  How did Honey Bee and I get so lucky?

Being a parent is not easy. There are sleepless nights, long days, cries that won't stop.  Being a mom to twins means double the sleepless nights, long days and crying.  Being a parent to multiples is not easy.  But, when you add the "preemie" label to the mix....sometimes it can feel dang near impossible.  On top of the sleepless nights, long days, and crying, you have countless doctors' appointments, you have winter hibernation, you have a newborn MUCH longer than intended.

It IS hard, but it is SO worth it.  I get to celebrate each milestone with each of my bees.  I get to experience "baby's first (insert something silly here) twice in a short amount of time.  I get double the toothless grins.  I get double the belly laughs.  I get double the snuggles.

My bees have come a long way since their early arrival.  I marvel at the strides that they have made and often find myself asking "what happened to my 5 pound baby I brought home?".  I find myself dreaming about their future.  What will they be when they grow up?  Will they play sports?  Will they be into the arts?  Will they be in the band?  Will they be nerds?  What if one is a "cool kid" and the other is a nerd?  Will they get married?  Will I be a grandmother someday? (Sidenote - if yes, please remind me how insane my mother and mother in law can be at times.  grandparent = a little insane)

As I think of all these things, I find myself overwhelmed with feelings of thanks.  Thanks to my OB who sent me to the MFM "just to be on the safe side".  Thankful for the MFM who I met and admitted me to the hospital within 30 minutes.  Thankful to my nurse in L&D, Miss Myra.  I don't even know her last name, but she was an angel on the day of my admission.  Thankful to my college roommate, Ashley, who is a Nurse Practitioner at the NICU where the bees were born.  Thankful to the MFM that safely delivered my bees.  And thanks that I cannot begin to describe to the neonatologists that worked feverishly on my bees after their birth, and continued to work for them day in and day out.  Another group that I will forever be thankful for are the nurses in the NICU.  They are the ones that know your baby, sometimes better than you.  They are the ones that know you by name.  I was never "Mrs. Bee" to them, rather I was "Bridgit".  They were the ones that took care of my bees when I couldn't.  They cared for my bees when I wasn't able to be at the hospital.  They were most often the ones the shared the big news - Chunky Bee is on room air, Itty Bitty Bee has been moved to CPAP from the vent, Chunky took his whole bottle for me, Itty Bitty had a clear brain scan....the list goes on and on.

Today I am thankful.  Although it is not the life I would have chosen, I can't imagine it any other way.

Monday, November 7, 2011

National Prematurity Awareness Month - Part 2

Did you know:

  • 1 in 8 babies in the US are born premature.
  • The US preemie rate has grown by 36% in the past 25 years.
You can make a difference!  You can volunteer or donate to the March of Dimes.  Be the difference you want to see!  Your gift of time, money or support can help babies like this:

become this:

November 17th is World Prematurity Day.  Honor the 12 million preemies that fought to survive and the over 1 million that died this year.

My Bees' 1st Halloween

Halloween was kind of boring for us.  The bees are too small for trick or treating, so that was out.  Due to the risk of colds, flu & RSV, we chose not to go to any local fall festivals or church carnivals.  I had resigned myself to the fact that the bees were just going to have a "My 1st Halloween" onesie and that was the end of it.

Aren't they cute???  I could have been happy with just this, but about 2 weeks before Halloween I was doing some online shopping.  Between work and spending time with the bees, I rarely have time to shop for anything more than groceries and household items.  Online shopping is becoming quite addictive!  While shopping for some long sleeve outfits for the boys, I stumbled across the cutest costumes for the bees.  They were on sale, I had a discount code and free shipping.  I got both outfits for less than $15 and couldn't resist.  

Honey Bee agreed that Chunky and Itty Bitty were cute, but says that next year we need something "more manly".  

Friday, November 4, 2011

Favorite Things Friday

Now that the bees are getting older, we are starting to use some new stuff with them.  Here are a few of my favorite things that we use on a regular basis:

NoseFrida - I had read on other blogs how great the SnotSucker is, but honestly the thought of it grossed me out.  Still does kind of.  But OMG!  The amount of snot I get out of the bees' nose is unbelievable.  Chunky Bee had his first cold a few weeks ago and the NoseFrida was my last-ditch effort before going to the pedi.  After a few days of saline and sucking, all better.  I even asked Honey Bee if he thought I could use it on myself when I caught Chunky Bee's cold.  ::Insert blank stare::

Sleep Sacks - Chunky Bee has been unswaddled for a while now.  The thought of SIDS scares the crap out of me, so I didn't want to use a blanket in his crib.  The sleep sack is a wearable blanket.  It keeps baby warm, but doesn't pose a suffocation hazard.  We have 2 right now, but need to purchase a few more because we're breaking Itty Bitty of the swaddle in the next week or so.

Gerber Puffs & Lil Crunchy Veggie Sticks - Chunky Bee is doing great with solids.  Itty Bitty Bee is only slightly interested, but is getting better.  I've been offering Chunky some puffs to help with his fine motor skills.  The puffs dissolve in baby's mouth and stick to slobbering hands well.  Recently, I tried him with Gerber Veggie Sticks.  The kid was smacking because he liked the taste so much.  He even started crying when he was out of them on his tray.  Of course being the great mom that I am, I have sampled both of these.  I mean if they taste badly, how can I expect him to eat them?  Both varieties are quite tasty.  (Sidenote - We've tried the Peach Yogurt Melts and neither of us are a fan.)

Sound Machine - This sound machine is SO soothing.  The bees' received it as a gift after they were born.  Initially I thought "We'll never use this.  They have mobiles on their cribs" I was wrong.  While Itty Bitty was still in the NICU, I took it in an placed it in his bed.  He was in a private room and I felt like he was alone so much that it would be nice for him to have music.  A bonus of this machine is that it also has image discs that display scenes on the wall or ceiling.  Each day when I arrived, Itty Bitty was either asleep with the machine on or wide awake watching the fish or sheep.

Now that both bees are at home, we have the machine in the nursery.  It plays 3 different lullabies and it has 3 nature sound setting.  The thing that makes this better than their mobile is that it has a timer.  We can "set it and forget it".  We put the bees down drowsy, but not asleep.  The soothing music in combination with the dark room is the perfect sleep scenario for the bees.

What are some of your favorite things?

Thursday, November 3, 2011

National Prematurity Awareness Month

November is National Prematurity Awareness Month.  As we move through the month, I plan to dedicate several posts to prematurity awareness.

Thursday's Tidbits

When I started this new blog, I had great intentions of posting at least 5 days a week.  Well, it seems as if I'm failing.  I vow to myself, my bees and my (few) readers that I will get better.

Lots of things have happened since my last post...

  • The bees had a weigh in yesterday while receiving their monthly Synagis shot.  Chunky Bee is up to 15lb12oz and Itty Bitty Bee is up to 8lb14oz.  
  • Both bees had a follow up appointment with their opthamologist.  Both were at risk of eye disease as a result of their premature birth, but Dr. E said they both have "perfectly healthy eyes".  Yay!  We don't have to go back until they are 2 years old.
  • Honey Bee and I had a stay-cation last weekend.  We stayed at a golf and spa resort in town.  It was nice to have an adult dinner, a few drinks and a full night's sleep.  I mean from 11ish until 10ish.  I was so well-rested.
  • The bees are getting much better with solids.  Chunky Bee is getting oatmeal and fruit or yogurt for breakfast and both bees are getting dinner.  Itty Bitty is a picker eater, but he seems to love sweet potatoes and peach yogurt.  The kid may turn orange, but at least he's eating.
  • The whole family ventured out a few weekends ago.  We went to zoo.  I figured it was a safe bet since it was open air and people wouldn't be in the bees' faces.  Princess Bee had a great time.  She got to feed the giraffes.  I got some great pictures while we were there.  Hopefully I'll get around to downloading them and will share them.
Those are the highlights of the last few weeks.  Of course there was the bees' first Halloween, but that deserves a post all on its own.  Also, we have some big stuff coming up with Itty Bitty - more details to come.

PS - Congrats to my friend, Megan on the birth of her little girl, Piper.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Y3W - My favorite time

I had a hard time picking out my 3 words for today.  I had several options, including:

  • Three Full Nights (as in sleep.  all night long.  both bees!)
  • Can't Stop Eating (I blame PMS)
  • Great Dr. Appt (coming in another post)
  • First Family Outing (happening tomorrow!  Come back for the details.)
But ultimately I decided on "My Favorite Time" because it's something that seems to be happening on a daily basis now. 

Honey Bee and I wake at 5 am Monday through Friday.  Before the bees were born, I could sleep until 5:45 and still make it to work on time.  But when you throw pumping and feeding at least one bee in the mix, it just doesn't work.  

Honey Bee is a morning person by nature.  He wakes up talkative, happy and walks around singing.  Me?  Not so much.  I've never been a morning person, but lately I look forward to the mornings.  Why, you ask?  It's because of the bees!  They wake up happy.  They wake up smiling.  They wake up talking.  They give us time to warm bottles before having a meltdown.  Clearly they got that from their daddy!

I love our mornings together!  The four of us will hang out on the bed.  The boys will eat.  I'll pump & put on my makeup.  Honey Bee will play with the bees.  They laugh.  They smile.  Sometimes they stare at the ceiling fan in amazement. Sometimes they stare at each other and smile.  Sometimes they hold hands.  A lot of times, Chunky Bee will roll over and squish Itty Bitty Bee with a "hug".  Or he'll roll over and start sucking on Itty Bitty's head.  Don't worry - Itty Bitty gets in on the action as well.  He will kick Chunky or give him a good slap to the face.  And occasionally they will fall back to sleep.  

Who would have thought that two little boys could make me a morning person?  I never would have dreamed that early mornings would be my favorite time of the day.

Happy Friday!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Y3W - Call me slacker!

I used to be organized.  I used to be a planner.  I used to have "to-do" lists.  These days?  Not so much.

Since the bees were born, life has been crazy to say the least.  I'm not sure if it's because I'm a first time mom {to babies}.  When Princess Bee became part of my life she was not a newborn. I never had to pack a diaper bag.  I never had to plan trips around nap time.  I never had to measure out bottles.  Despite all of these things I "never had to do", I always had a plan for me, Honey Bee and Princess Bee.  These days I feel like I'm flying by the seat of my pants.  Barely getting by.

If it's not due to being a first time mom, is it related to having twin baby bees?  When Honey Bee and I found out we were expecting twins we went through a wide range of emotions - joy, panic, worry, HOLY CRAP!  I had grand visions of spending nearly 4 months at home after their birth.  I'd have them sleeping in their room, in their cribs by 2 months old.  We'd use BabyWise to have them sleeping through the night by 10 weeks old.  I'd have an iron-clad daily routine and our days would run like a well-oiled machine.

Today our life is pretty much the opposite of this vision.  Honey Bee just asked me earlier this week "What happened to my wife?  You know the one that used to plan everything?"  Well, let's see....she had two babies.  Ten weeks early.  Life just gets in the way.  I work full time and when I get home each day, I have less than 3 hours to spend with the bees before bedtime.  During this time, I don't care what's for dinner.  I don't care that I have two loads of laundry to be folded.  So what that they've been there for 2 weeks?  It doesn't bother me that I'm grabbing clean sleepers out of the basket because I never got around to putting them in the drawer in the bees' room.

I will say this - our house needs a good, deep cleaning.  I really want to hire someone to come in twice a month to do this, but Honey Bee says we can't afford it.  You know, the whole one income household thing? But our house isn't filthy, nasty, dirty.  Does the furniture need dusting?  Yes.  Do the tile floors need to be steam cleaned?  Yes.  Is the living room our own plastic jungle?  Yes.  But to me, it's not cluttered.  It's not nasty.  I mean, I lay the bees in the floor all the time.  If I thought our house was dirty, I'd do something about it.  It just needs a little "elbow grease" as my Nanny calls it.

So if you want to call me a slacker because I'd rather spend time snuggling with my bees instead of planning meals, folding laundry, and mopping floors, go right ahead!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

This is how I feel lately.  The bees have got to start sleeping better.  Please?  Pretty please?

Midweek Musings

I have a lot racing through my mind today, so I think bullets will be the best.  My type A personality loves a good bulletted list :)

  • The bees have their first NICU follow up appointment tomorrow.  I've been told to expect to be there at least 3 hours for both of them to be seen.  My understanding is that we will see PT, OT, Speech, Nutrition & Audiology.  That's a lot of people.  I'm really hoping the bees can handle all the stimulation.

  • We had our 6 month well-baby appointment last week.  It went well.  We love our pedi and she has twins of her own, so she can relate.  She was very pleased with Chunky Bee's weight gain and motor skills.  Chunky Bee is on the growth chart for his actual age and in the "average" range for his adjusted age.  Poor little Itty Bitty Bee is still not on the charts.  Not even close.  But our pedi was pleased with his weight gain.  In the 20 days since he'd been in her office, he had gained an average of 1/2 ounce per day.  She said that was a step in the right direction.  However when we started discussing motor skills, he's behind.  Way behind :(  

  • Speaking of Itty Bitty's motor skills...he's receiving in-home PT/OT.  He was evaluated a couple of weeks ago and was classified as a 2 month old.  His body is more focused on gaining weight and breathing than building muscle tone.  We have some "exercises" - I use that term lightly - to do with him and for now he will have once a month sessions with the PT.  I'm hoping tomorrow's visit puts pressure on our provider to visit more often.

  • Insurance is such a pain in the butt!  I'm so tired of people not doing their job.  I've spoken with the billing department at the hospital where the bees were born at least 5 times about their bill.  First, they didn't file a claim with our primary insurance.  They sent me a bill for Chunky Bee.  Did they really think I was going to just fork over almost $90K for his NICU stay?  I called and thought I got it all straightened out.  Then a couple of weeks later they called me - AT WORK - and left a message.  I was mortified!  Luckily our secretary knows everything that we've been through and knows that Honey Bee and I pay our bills.  It's just so frustrating!

  • In addition to the bees' check ups last week, they received vaccines.  No fun!  Itty Bitty is on a delayed scheduled because of his small size, but Chunky is on schedule for his actual age.  Itty Bitty received 3 vaccines while Chunky received 4.  Oh and they both got their first flu shot.  The rest of that afternoon wasn't so bad, but when it was bedtime cue the fussiness and fever.  Two preemies + fever + first time mommy = scared and worried Queen B.  Both bees ran fever on and off for 4 days.  

  • I've been pumping since the bees were born.  It has become such a chore.  I have a love-hate relationship with my pump.  I love that I can provide the bees with milk and all the good stuff that comes with it.  But that's about all I love.  I hate the "swoosh, swoosh, swoosh" sound of the pump.  I hate the red, irritated areas on my nipples.  I hate washing my pump parts.  I hate waking up with two bricks on my chest.  I hate pumping!  My original goal was to make it until the bees are one year old, but I highly doubt that's going to happen.  Right now it's a month to month thing.  

I hope you're having a great week!

Friday, September 23, 2011

One year ago

Today marks one year.  One year of buying two of everything.  One year of thinking about two cars in 16 years.  One year of thinking about 2 college educations in 18 years.  One year of thinking about two little ones in diapers.  One year of thinking about double the hugs and kisses.

When you work with a fertility specialist you know the chances of having multiples is there, but you think "It won't be us."  I remember crying after my last monitoring appointment with my RE because I had only 1 mature follicle and one other that "may catch up".  Little did I know those tears were wasted.

My bloodwork at 12 days past my IUI showed relatively high beta HCG levels.  I went to betabase and compared my numbers to the average woman.  I knew it looked like multiples were possible, but I still didn't think it was really going to happen.  Then the night before my first ultrasound I had a dream that the RE saw 2 heartbeats.  I didn't think about it that morning while getting ready, but waiting in the exam room I told Honey Bee "I think it's twins."  He kind of blew me off and then the ultrasound tech walked in.  End of discussion.  Sure enough, two heartbeats showed up immediately.  Two sacs, each with a little flickering grain of rice.  It was the most beautiful thing I've ever seen.

Dont' you agree that it's beautiful?  How did those two little grains of rice grow into my little bees?  How did something so small grow into 6 month old babies?  If you think those little grains of rice are cute, check out what they've become since then

Aren't my bees cute?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Tomorrow

6 month vaccines X two = Nervous Queen Bee

Welcome ICWL!

Welcome ladies (and gents?)!

I'm Bridgit.  I just started this blog to chronicle the events of my life as a new mom to twin boys, known around here as the bees.  You can find out more about me and my beehive here.  Honey Bee (my husband) and I struggled with IF issues - you can read more about our TTC journey here.

I'm a first time mother and I'm learning as I go.  Sometimes I think I'm way ahead of the learning curve, but other times I've dropped off the charts.

I'm looking forward to meeting you!

Monday, September 19, 2011


What happened to my boys that slept from 7:30 until 5:00?  Yes, 5:00 am is early but it's much better than waking up at 2:15 and not wanting to go back to sleep until 3:30.  This was Chunky Bee last night or shall I say this morning?   Once I realized that he wasn't going back to sleep and picked him up out of his crib, he was fine. Happy.  Smiling.  Talking.  Super Alert.  Did I mention that he had three cat naps yesterday that totaled about 1 hour of sleep.   I don't know how the kid does it!

Then we have Itty Bitty Bee.  He wakes because he's truly hungry.  Sometimes it is at 2:00 other times it's at 4:00.  It varies.  Oddly enough it doesn't frustrate me when he wakes up in the middle of the night to eat.  He's little.  He needs to eat.  He usually falls back asleep while eating.  You're up maybe 30 minutes with him.

I can't figure it out.  I've read all about growth spurts.  I've read about the  dreaded "4 month wakeful".  I've read about teething.  I don't think it's any of these things with Chunky Bee.  I think he's spoiled.  Maybe he's having some separation issues.  He's in the bees' room by himself right now.  I've read that infants start noticing that they are "alone" around this age.  There are lots of things I don't know, but I do know that Honey Bee and I are exhausted!

In an effort to remedy this, I have the bees' nanny increasing the amount of milk Chunky Bee takes during the day.  He's been happy with 4 ounces every 3 hours.  I'm hoping that we can get up to 5 ounces every 3 hours and with solids he'll have a full tummy and be sleepy.  At this point I'm willing to try anything.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

A heavy heart

To say that Itty Bitty Bee has had a tough road would be an understatement. He spent four and a half months in the hospital after being born. He struggled to gain weight (still does). He went on and off CPAP numerous times. He had 4 spinal taps. Needless to say, he's been poked and prodded more than the average adult.

Even though it's been a rough road, I'm very grateful. Itty Bitty is alive. He hasn't had surgeries. He has a healthy heart. His brain ultrasounds were clear. As of now we don't know of any long-term effects of his premature birth. Very grateful and blessed.

A preemie mom friend of mine lost her little boy last night. This is the second child she and her husband have lost. I cannot imagine the pain and suffering. There are no words.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Favorite Things Friday

Even though the baby bees are six months old, they are "technically" not even four months old yet.  I feel as if I've had 2 newborns forever.  Here are some items that have been extra helpful during this stage of the bees' life:

Medicine Dispenser - I LOVE this thing.  Itty Bitty Bee has medicines to take daily for his pulmonary hypertension and BPD.  He's not a great eater, so I can't count on putting the medicine in his bottle either.  Honey Bee and I use this dispenser at the beginning of Itty Bitty's feedings to ensure that he gets all of the medicine.  

Boppy - I've been home with both baby bees and their feeding times have overlapped.  It's so easy to prop both baby bees up and feed both of them at the same time.  In addition, Itty Bitty loves being propped up just to look around.  Chunky Bee used to like that, but now that he's rolling over he's apparently too big for it.

Fisher Price Bathtub - The baby bees LOVE bath time!  Love it!  This bathtub has legs that attach and it sits right on top of the kitchen sink.  This has come in quite handy since starting purees with the bees.  Feed one and move straight to the tub.  I particularly love the mesh sling.  It attaches (and detaches) easily.  Itty Bitty still needs the sling, but Chunky Bee is too big for it.  Even though he can't use the sling, there is a ledge that helps support him and keep his head out of the water.  

There you have it.  I'm not sure Honey Bee and I would make it without these items.  I'm looking forward to featuring more items as the baby bees grow.

Y3W - Come Meet Me!

I started this blog just this week. I have several things that I hope to add, but for now I'm just trying to commit to blogging at least 4 days week.

If you're here through Y3W, follow me and you can get an glance of life inside the beehive.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

When the lights go down...

I returned to work a little over 5 weeks ago.  The boys have a nanny that comes to the house each day while I'm at work and Honey Bee is in school, studying, etc.  For the first 3 weeks, I gave her the freedom of making their schedule.  It became obivous that it wasn't working - major meltdowns each day, poor sleeping habits, cranky parents.  Sometimes they would take their last bottle at 7 other times it was closer to 9.  I NEED some sort of consistency. 

Honey Bee and I spent Labor Day weekend tweaking a "daily routine" for the boys.  I've learned that regardless of what happens during the day, they need a bedtime ritual.  They need signals to let them know it's bedtime.  Here's what our afternoon and evening looks like:

4:30ish  - I get home from work, change clothes and disinfect myself before touching the boys.  After cleaning, I play with the boys in the floor.  We talk, we laugh, we practice sitting and rolling over.  Somebody has a breakdown because he's not getting enough attention.

5:30 - Honey Bee occupies both boys while I go get their dinner ready.  We started purees recently and I'm still learning what they like and don't like.  I plan on making larger batches for freezing, but for now it's a day-to-day thing.  (I use this website as a guide for recipes and which foods to introduce.)

5:45 - Feed the first boy.  It varies, but it's usually Itty Bitty Bee.  He's smaller, not a fan of the spoon and gets messier than his brother.  Honey Bee plays with the other one during this time.

6:00 - Feed the other one.  While I'm feeding, Honey Bee is washing bottles and making up bottles for the next day.  Which ever boy isn't being fed, plays on a blanket in the floor.

6:15 - Honey Bee baths one of the boys.  We try to alternate days on bathing.  Both of my little bees are so much fun in the bathtub and we enjoy switching it up.  After Honey Bee is done, I bath the other one.

6:30 - After everyone is bathed, lotioned and dressed for bed, the baby bees get their final bottle of the night.  Chunky Bee usually falls asleep while taking this bottle.  Itty Bitty on the other hand, is wide awake at this point.  He will take about half of his bottle.

7:00 - After some snuggling and rocking, Chunky Bee is sound asleep.  As soon as you lay him in his crib, his eyes POP open. Most of the time, we can give him his paci and he'll drift back to sleep.  Other times, it's a back and forth game.

While Chunky Bee is being put down, Itty Bitty is receiving his nightly breathing treatment.  The breathing treatment usually puts him to sleep.  Not because it makes him sleepy, but because he has to be still.  When he stops squirming and moving around, he falls fast asleept.

7:15ish - After Chunky Bee is down and settled, I begin making dinner.  Later than before we had kids, but Honey Bee and I decided we'd rather eat later than eat with a kid on our shoulder or eat cold food. 

Honey Bee and I usually eat around 7:45 or 8:00 and then clean the kitchen together afterwards.  Then we enjoy an hour or so together before heading to bed. 

What is your nightly routine like?  Any tips or suggestions?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


Welcome to my blog.  For more information about me and my family check out the About the Beehive tab.  I'm still working on building my new blog, but hope to post regularly.