Thursday, December 27, 2007

4lbs11oz of babies

4lbs11oz - that's the total of all of the babies' weights. Whew! I had another growth measurement ultrasound this afternoon. They still have good amniotic fluid levels and are growing lots. As of today, baby A (identical) measured in at 23w5d, 1lb6oz and 13" long; baby B (identical) measured at 22w6d, 1lb3oz and 13" long; baby C (fraternal) measured in at 23w0d, 1lb2oz and 12.5" long; and lastly baby D (fraternal) measured at 21w6d, 1lb and 12" long (FYI...today I am 22w5d).

It looks like baby D is the "runt of the litter" ;) She measured the smallest at the last growth measurement ultrasound, at 18w3d. My docs say it's totally normal to have a runt. What I think is awesome is that they are all roughly the same size. I know this can change (or it's likely they all won't be the same size near the end or at birth) but still it's great that they are growing like this.

I will have another growth measurement ultrasound in 4 weeks. It's fun to see how much they grow in 4 weeks :)

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas 2007!

We wish everyone a blessed and safe Christmas this year! For us, it will be a low-key Christmas, as you could expect. We'll have my mom, Paul's cousin and his cousin's wife and my nephew and sister over for Christmas lunch.

Jared has enjoyed this Christmas season. He tells us every time we get out in the car at night "i have an idea!! let's look at the Christmas lights in our neighborhood." Ha! He has also enjoyed making cookies with Grammy and Mommy, singing (and dancing) to Christmas music (just this morning, in fact :) ), talking about Jesus' birth and Jesus being in his heart and counting down to Christmas with our Advent Christmas tree.

These four girls are wiggling much stronger lately. I can differentiate between which one is kicking/rolling. I think babies C (down low in my uterus) and D (on my left side) play footsies sometimes ;) And babies A and B (the identicals, on my right side) like to play with my ribs or something :P Ha! Paul said he read that in four weeks their wiggling will go from "awe, that's so cute that they're moving" to "oh please, quit hurting me." Nevertheless, it's fun to feel them move around.

Paul gave me a Christmas present to open early. As it turns out, it's a CD set of Handel's Messiah! Yay! So currently, I am listening to it in our laptop as I type ;) It reminds me of my high school and college days of playing the Messiah. Wonderful music! It also reminds me of what Christmas is and what it means to me and my family. I praise God that He loved us so much that he humbled Himself to come as a baby, one of us, in the flesh yet still God. And that Jesus gave us freedom, freedom from being separated from God, freedom from death. I pray that we can all remember who Jesus was, is, and is to come! I leave you with this (in fact, it's currently being played on my Messiah CD)...

Isaiah 9:6
For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Latest Quad Pic at 20.5 weeks

Here is the latest ultrasound picture, from my appointment today, of the quads...



They are labeled, "A" "B" "C" and "D". I think it's a laying down view of "A" (I think that's the spine there), an abdominal view of "B", again a laying down view of "C" and then another abdominal view of "D". Lots and lots of babies there ;) And if you look carefully, in the upper portion of the picture (the black areas), you can see white lines. Those lines represent each different sac (three total) or the "lines of demarcation" :)

They looked pretty cramped in there. This was the first ultrasound where I thought "whoa, who is who?" Usually, I can distinguish which baby is which and see the anatomy of the babies. Today was quite different.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

HUAM

Just today, I received my HUAM, or home uterine activity monitor, from Matria. And I just used the monitor tonight! I have to lay still (on my side) for one hour for the monitor to pick up any activity. The monitor then trasmits the data via our land-line to Matria. A nurse with Matria calls me after reviewing the data and tells me what the results are. Tonight, she said there was one little contraction, like "mild uterine irritability." So that is great results. I also gave her info on the blood pressure test I took earlier today.

Tomorrow? More of the same...wear the monitor an hour in the morning and an hour in the evening. Let's pray the results keep being as great as tonight's :)

Saturday, December 08, 2007

2 to 3 months left - Ack!!!!

Well, I guess if I were only carrying a singleton today would be the half way mark for me. I turn 20 weeks pregnant today. But no half way for me. I figure we have 2 to 3 months left until these babies could be born. Oh my, oh my! Everyone asks me "so, when are you due" or "what's your due date?" Well, um, er, uh, that's sort of hard to say. Techincally, my due date isn't until the end of April 2008, like 4/26/08. However....quads are delivered much earlier than the 40 week gestation (yeah, like my body or any other woman's body could go to 40 weeks with quads. I think the body would literally burst by then ;) ). The quads could be delivered as early as mid-February (30 weeks) or around mid-March (34 weeks). My docs and I are shootin' for 34 weeks. That would be SO awesome to make it until then!! I read about a family from Georgia, the Malone Quads (there's also another quad blog I check out, The Murrays from Indiana), that delivered quad boys here in Phx this past summer at 34 weeks. Oh yes! The babies weighed in between 4 and 5 lbs. Oh, to have four babies born around 5 lbs!! That would be a huge blessing and miracle!

We continue to pray that God keeps holding up this body of mine for the next few months. I was just praying the other night, before falling asleep, that "God, you've got to do this! I can't do this." and "Nothing is impossible with you, Jesus" and "It's all you Lord!" And it is all Him! We pray that He would continue to grow these baby girls and keep them healthy and strong. We also pray for His peace these last few months and peace and patience when the babies arrive ('cause you know that's going to be a whirlwind ;) And we'll need to rely on Him!).

Friday, December 07, 2007

Conan Visits Intel

We had a friend over for lunch today and she was telling me about a video of a visit Conan O'Brien took at the Intel Santa Clara location (head quarters) back in May 2007. She said it was so funny yet so true of working at Intel (she still works at Intel, here in Chandler). Well, she found the video for me and oh yes!, it is so Intel. Ha! It reminds me of my years at Intel here in Chandler...the cubicles and the pole locations, the cafeteria, the miles and miles of gray (ha!), the fab (I went in to both of the fabs here in Chandler, 12 and 22).

Here is the clip, http://www.clipstr.com/videos/ConanVisitsIntel/. Have fun ;)

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Showered With Love by Friends and Family

I felt SO blessed by the "babies" shower we had this past weekend! Some close friends hosted and coordiated the shower. It was very fun to see friends and family that I have not seen in a while (due to me being house bound). It was a beautiful day being with loved ones. I am truly blessed by all of the friendships/relationships God has given to me!!

Here is a picture of the VERY cute cake my good friend made for the shower. She did an awesome job!!


Here is a picture of me with everyone
More pictures of the celebration are at our website, under "The Quads" and "It's a 'Babies' Shower!"

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

It is Official!

Yes, we are having ALL FOUR GIRLS! I had my BIG level II fetal measurements ultrasound yesterday and the tech said "girl" to all of the babies. Wow! Now, it's time to come up with 8 girl names ;)

The ultrasound went well. HUGE praises to God for taking care of me and these four babies. I am just amazed at how good and perfect God! He is the only one that is making this happen! All of the measurements on the babies were perfect. It was crazy what we could see from the ultrasound...four-chamber hearts, the pulmonary arteries, the kidneys, the bladders and stomachs (all full and working, which the tech said was a good sign), etc., etc. We also got measurements of their heads, abdomens and femur bones. With these measurements, the tech said "babies A, B (the identicals) and C (one of the fraternals) are all growing ahead of you, about a week ahead. baby C is growing in step with you." Wow, it's sounds like they might be big babies just like big brother is ;) Jared was always growing ahead of me, sometimes almost 4 weeks ahead. Paul asked the tech "wow, I would have figured that them being quads would mean they would be growing slower or smaller??" She said "nope. they grow at the same rate as a singleton. it's just that they don't stay in-utero as long as a singleton." That's just amazing!

My body is still doing well, housing and nurturing these four wiggly babies (and boy, were they wiggly at the ultrasound - ha!) When I do get up and walk around, I can definitely feel the aches and pains. It feels like when I was 35 weeks pregnant with Jared :)

We have picture printouts from the ultrasound but there are so many of them. I think we have 16 pictures and I think I heard the tech say she took over 100 snapshots during the ultrasound...and she took some more after a break we took. It's just a lot of babies and baby parts to look at :)

Thanks for your continued prayers. They are truly evident to us!

P.S. From the poll we posted on our blog, 2 people (16%) said it will be 4 boys, 1 person (8%) said 4 girls, 1 person (8%) said 2 girls and 2 boys, 6 people (50%) said 3 boys and 1 girl and 2 people (16%) said 3 girls and 1 boy. I believe Amy K won the gender poll, with her vote of 4 girls. What do you win Amy? Some lovely baby sitting time helping us with the girls ;) Hee hee!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Four Turkeys

Well, I hope these four new little turkeys of ours enjoyed the Thanksgiving dinner ;) I know Paul, Jared and I did.

We didn't get to make it to California for Thanksgiving this year :( but we felt so blessed that our friends coordinated a potluck Thanksgiving dinner at our home. We had fun eating and chatting with friends and Jared had fun playing with all of the kids. It seemed like Jared was the ring leader - Ha! I am truly thankful for each and every person God has placed in our lives!! We are so blessed with friends and family! Pictures of our Thanksgiving is at our website, under "Holidays" and "Thanksgiving."

I had another weekly OB appointment with my peri Thanksgiving Eve. All of the babies are doing well and my body is holding up nicely. Yay! Another praise is that my doctor said I can get up off of bed rest now. Double Yay!! She felt that since things are going so well and I haven't experienced any nasty symptoms, that it's okay for me to get up and even out of the house. Now, I can't do anything strenuous, like go rock climbing or Black Friday shopping alone, but I can get up, walk around, perhaps go to a store accompanied. Oh, it feels so good to be liberated. She said "you might as well get up now because you might be back on the bed rest soon, due to pre-term labor contractions, dilation, etc." So, I have a little freedom...yet I am not going to over do it or push my limits. I can already feel how difficult it is to lift and walk around with several pounds of quadruplets. Below is a picture of me and the babies at 17w5d...



Hope you had a blessed and restful Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Looks like ALL girls!

Yesterday, I went in (again) for an ultrasound. I go in weekly now for ultrasounds, to get certain measurements and to see how my body is handling the HOM pregnancy, e.g. if there are signs of pre-term labor and such. Everyone looks good and the clot is not growing. We got some really good ultrasound pictures of the babies...arms up, hands very visible, faces.

It also looks like we're going to have ALL, FOUR, girls. Oh man!!!! It's been pretty consistent that each time I go in, all the techs see is girls. So unless a boy pops up on the radar ;) , it will be 2 boys and 5 girls in our home. Whew!

I am still on bed rest for the clot. This is week 5 for me for the bed rest. I am amazed that the time has gone by...guess that's good. Just praying that God keeps taking care of this clot and protecting the babies!!

My tummy is growing by leaps and bounds ;) I'm trying to eat as much as I can but I can tell that my consumption has slowed down. More aches and pains are happening now, which is understandable. Some friends of mine said "you look like a 33week or almost full-term pregnant mom!" Yeah, I guess so :)

The holidays are coming up and we'll be here in AZ; me stuck in bed or on the sofa. It is a HUGE blessing that some friends of ours from church are organizing a potluck Thanksgiving dinner here at our home. It will be so fun to have friends over and enjoy their friendship! I don't know what we'd do if we didn't have the friends and family that God has given to us!! God is good!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Half-way mark

Today I am 16 weeks pregnant with these quads. So, I figure I am half the way through my pregnancy. The U.S. average for delivery quads is 30 weeks but for my perinatologist's office, ~32 weeks is their average for delivery of quads. Although, they want me to make it to 34 weeks. Oh, I pray that God would make that happen and we can have big, healthy babies!! It's crazy to think I am half the way :P

Here is what is happening with the babies at 16 weeks (from BabyCenter.com)...

How your baby's growing: At 4 1/2 inches long (head to bottom) and 3 1/2 ounces, your baby is about the size of an avocado. In the next three weeks, she'll go through a tremendous growth spurt, though, doubling her weight and adding inches to her length. Her lower limbs are much more developed now (I saw this at my last ultrasound). Her head is more erect than it has been, and her eyes have moved toward the front of her head. Your baby's ears are close to their final position, too. Some of her more advanced body systems are working, including her circulatory system and urinary tract. Her heart is now pumping about 25 quarts of blood each day, circulating her total blood volume through her body many times. (By the end of your pregnancy, this will increase to about 190 quarts.) The patterning of her scalp has begun, though her hair isn't recognizable yet (I wonder if they will have as much hair as Jared did when he was born ;) ). Although closed, her eyes are moving (slowly), and she's even started growing toenails.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Bloomin'

Oh it's so fun to see flowers blooming this time of year. I know friends and family in other parts of the country don't get this luxury, of fall blooms. Some of our plants, from our recent summer 2007 landscape project, are already blooming. Thanks to one of my doctors, yesterday saying I could get up and walk more, I took a short stroll in our back yard and took some pictures of the flowers. Here are some pics...

Close up of the purple flowers of a Mexican Heather False bush


Angelita Daisies


Blooms of a yellow Mexican Bird of Paradise tree


Orange Cape Honeysuckle blossoms


And purple flowers from the Baja Ruellia bush


We'll probably have flowers all throughout the cooler months and then again in the spring. Ah, flowers!!

My sweet boy

Yes, I love this guy! He is just so sweet and fun and sweet ;) Here are a few pics of our boy (there were taken by me while I was doing my bed rest stint in our bed room one day)...

What a handsome boy!

Jared being silly
Jared (with Dad) typing a letter to Cousin Jayson. Don't ask me why Jayson. That's just what Jared always says when he wants to type on the lap top, "Can I type a letter to Cousin Jayson?" Ha!

Friday, November 02, 2007

Plumbing Check

Well, this morning I went in to see a urologist and yesterday I had a renal ultrasound. My perinatologist requested these appointments for me as I apparently had the wonderful experience of having kidney stones 2.5 weeks ago :P Praise God that the kidney stones passed quickly (within 3 days) and the pain was fairly tolerable! First, we thought it was a UTI but all tests came back negative for that. Somehow, for some strange reason, it turned out to be kidney stones.

So, my renal ultrasound and visit with the urologist revealed that everything looks good. My right kidney (which, BTW, was the side where the pain was) is swollen a bit but the urologist said that is common with pregnancy. My remedy for future stones? Drink LOTS of H2O and follow a diet to reduce the chance of stones occurring again. Although, he said (and I've read about this too) that once you have kidney stones you're more susceptible of having them again. Great :P

For my next trick, I have an appointment for an echocardiogram...

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Whrrr! Fire Fighters to the Rescue!

This Halloween, Jared dressed up as a fire fighter. I think he loved the costume! What he probably loved more, though, was all the candy he got from trick-or-treating with Dad last evening. Jared's bag is heavy laden with LOTS of candy. Hope he'll share some with Mama and Dada ;)

Thanks to a good friend of ours from church, we were able to pass out candy to the neighborhood kids. She came over and manned the door for me, since I was stuck on the sofa. Plus, it was fun for me to have a friend to talk with in between the door bells :)

That's about all of the pictures for Halloween this year. I didn't even get to decorate our house or carve a pumpkin with Jared :( Oh well. Hopefully, we'll have some (okay, maybe one) decorations up for Thanksgiving or Christmas. You've got to have at least the tree up! That will brighten each day for me :)
Hope you had a safe and fun Halloween! Boo ;) !

Monday, October 29, 2007

Baby Pictures - At 13.5 Weeks

Yay, Paul got my last ultrasound pictures scanned! Here they are...

Babies A & B (they're "spooning" together - ha! :) , you can clearly see Baby B's spine and femur bones)
Baby C (facing up, head on the left)
And Baby D (this one is laying on his/her tummy, face down, head on the left, bottom on the right)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Update on the clot

I went in today for a follow-up ultrasound on the uterine clot we found last week. I am happy to say that the clot looks much better...it's smaller, it's breaking down (maybe almost 100% broken down!) and is now composed of blood serum(?) that is responsible for the breaking down of the clot. Yay!! Praise God! Looks like the bed rest is doing something ;)

This doesn't mean I am allowed to be off of bed rest. I still need to be on bed rest. The clot is still there and we still want it to go away completely. So keep praying for that!

All of the babies look wonderful...nice and big for their gestation, great heartbeats and lots of movement. Don't know their genders yet (I know EVERYONE wants to know this already - ha!). I can't really feel their movements yet, or at least something that is distinguishable. They say that will probably happen around 16 to 17 weeks. I'd like to try to post some ultrasound pics of the babies online but I'll have to get Paul's help to get them scanned to my laptop.

I go back to my peri in two weeks (~15.5 weeks pregnant) for another ultrasound check-up on the clot. Then, I think I start going in to the docs every week - whew! We'll also start monitoring the identical twins for the twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome (watching the amniotic fluid levels and the babies' growth) around 16.5 weeks. Then the week after Thanksgiving I have my BIG 18 week level II ultrasound to measure all fetal structures and look for any abnormalities. They said this level II ultrasound should take 2 hours. Wow, that's a long time ;)

Thanks again for your prayers! Keep praying for us...all 7 of us!!

It's Spidey!! Boo!

Jared made this spider mask and stick craft at preschool today. Boo! Are you scared? I bet!! Oh, and the stuff on his mouth is apparently the remains of some black cookies they had for snacks today. Yeah, can I come to preschool too? It sounds like fun!! Food and crafts? Yeah, I'm there ;)


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

An Exhibition of Photographs by J.P.Carlson

Well, thanks again to Paul, I can now upload, edit and post any pictures and video to our web site and blog from our laptop. Yay! It's crazy how you get attached to certain things :P

Today, we are proud to support an exhibition of photographs by the semi-renowned photographer, J.P. Carlson. This is his first debut of photographs but from what the reviewers write, he is anxious to pick up the camera again and capture more memorable moments.

And now!, here is the revealing of his photographs (reminder, all photographs are protected by the copyright law and so any illegal reproductions will be prosecuted).

First, what he calls "Mama"


Next, "Mag Stack"


Then, "The B-I-B-L-E"


And lastly, but not least, "May I have a seat?"


There are a few more J.P. Carlson photograph originals available for viewing but you must visit his web site (under "Jared" and "Three Years Old").

We hope you've enjoyed this photo exhibition of Mr. Carlson's. Thank you for your patronage.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Look at that belly!

That's me at 13 weeks and 2 days. Whoa! Now, just imagine what I'll be like in another month, and then another, and another and then at the very end. It's all tummy, man ;)

Saturday, October 20, 2007

13 weeks today

Yup, I'm 13 weeks now. My tummy is getting bigger (of course ;) ). I might have Paul try to take a picture of me and post it but it might be difficult or take a while, as all of my website and photo programs are on my computer in the basement. Paul's been doing a great job taking care of me and Jared. I know it's hard on him and something he's not familiar in doing but he's doing great.

Here is a little blurb (from BabyCenter) on what's going on with the babies...
How your baby's growing: Your belly may soon be big enough to announce to the world (yeah, that has already happened ;) ) that you're expecting, but your baby is still tiny. In fact, he's only about 3 inches long crown to rump (wow, now imagine 4 babies in there, each of 3 inches long!! that's 12 inches of babies ;) ) — roughly the size of a jumbo shrimp — and weighs just about an ounce. Despite the small proportions, there's a fully formed baby inside your womb now. Much more proportional than it was a few weeks ago, his head is now only about a third the size of his body. His tiny, unique fingerprints are already in place. His kidneys and urinary tract are functional, and he's starting to urinate out the amniotic fluid he's been swallowing. As you start your second trimester, most of your baby's critical development will be completed, and your odds of miscarriage will drop considerably.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Prayers needed for the Quads

Well, I went in for an unscheduled ultrasound on Monday and the doctors found a big clot in my uterus :( Thank goodness (and Praise God!) that the babies are doing well - lots of movement, great heartbeats and looking good. But this clot could really hurt them, e.g. make me miscarry one or all of them or put me into pre-term labor :( So, the only remedy for this clot is to be on bed rest and pray, hope and wait for the clot stop bleeding, shrink and get re-absorbed back into my body.

This bed rest means NO getting up for anything except for potty breaks, a shower and to go to doctor's office visits. Really, we don't want to move this clot and make it worse. We want me to stay still and let the thing shrink and go away. Pray that that would happen!! Thank goodness, also, that I am not in any pain or anything. I think I've started to experience round ligament pain but that's about it. No pain on the side (left) that the clot is on. Praise God! Plus, I haven't had any really bad bleeding, which is another good sign. Praise God again!!

So, I am stuck on our sofa/bed probably for the rest of my pregnancy. Right now I am 12.5 weeks pregnant and we (us and the doctors) want me to make it to at least 32 weeks. So figure that I'm on bed rest for the next 20 weeks or ~5 months. Wow. And some of that bed rest at the end of the pregnancy will probably be hospitalized bed rest.

I go back to the doctor next week for an office visit and an ultrasound. So, it will be good to see the babies again and make sure this clot is not growing but shrinking.

It's going to be a difficult journey but Paul and I knew that this pregnancy wasn't going to be easy. We just didn't know that I could develop a clot and be on bed rest so early. Pray for us! Pray for Paul in taking care of me, Jared and our home! Pray for Jared! Pray for our marriage! And pray for these four sweet and precious blessings from God!!!! Thanks!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Going once...going twice...SOLD!

I am sad to report that our Honda Ody is gone (sniff, sniff) :( It was an awesome mini-van! Yes, I think I got a little attached to it ;) It is a crazy story how it got sold. It all happened so quickly. I think he listed it last Thursday evening on Craigslist, a couple called him Friday about it, they came out last Saturday to look at and test drive it and then just this past Tuesday we met them at their bank for payment. Wow! We sold a vehicle in less than a week! Hey, it’s all in God’s timing so he must have thought now is better than later to get it sold.

So, we were a one-car family for a week. Although, now we have a new set of wheels. Check this out ;)


Yup, we are the proud owners of a Chevy 12-passenger van. I think I'm going to lovingly call it "the behemoth." ;) Do you think we have enough room to fit Paul, Jared, me and the Quads in this vehicle? Ha! Yeah, we'll even have a little room to spare...but barely as we'll probably have a lot of baby accessories in the back, e.g. strollers, bags, etc.

Here are some more pics of it...

The driver side view


The front view


The inside front seats


There are two side doors, one on the passenger side...


and another on the driver's side

We decided it's probably better (and easier) to get the passenger van now versus later, like when I'm on bed rest, in the hospital or after the babies come. Again, I think God's timing was perfect in this!

We'll be looking like the church vans you see driving around...or the Super Shuttle vans. So, if you see a big white van, think of us - ha! ;)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Wiggle, baby, wiggle!

Yesterday, I had my first OB appointment with Phx Perinatal Associates, or nicknamed "PPA." It was a very good appointment. It was long but I didn't notice the time. I just noticed how thorough and how I was well cared for.

I got to see the babies again! No pics this time, though. They are getting big! I still can't help laughing when I see all of them moving and wiggling in my tummy. They are too cute! The doc said some moms can distinguish between one baby moving versus another. That is crazy! They all looked well. I go back to PPA in two weeks for another check up.

I asked the doc where the fundus (or top of the uterus) is. She said around my navel but not above. I think I can definitely feel it! She said "it's like you have a 20 week pg singleton uterus." Wow! But there's a lot of baby and life support in that uterus of mine so I can understand the size ;)

Also, we finally told Jared the news on him being a very big brother. He is excited! He just gasped when I told him I have babies in my tummy, that they are his brothers and sisters and that he's going to be a BIG brother to them. He loved hearing the news. He had to go tell Dad right away..."Dada! Mama has babies in her tummy!" He also wanted to call our best friends, the Murphys, and tell my friend, Karen, the news. Ha! We called and told Grammie (my mom) the news. He's been very sweet. We know he will be the best big brother ever!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Now, Jared's favorite piece of clothing

Last evening we had Paul's cousin, Jayson, his new bride, Lisa, and Paul's family from North Dakota over to our home. It was fun seeing and chatting with everyone again!

Jared had fun entertaining everyone, showing them around our house and telling everyone about his toys and cat named Bear. Jared got spoiled too ;) Paul's cousin Tammy brought a few things for him...a Halloween activity/coloring book and a Disney Cars Lightning McQueen t-shirt. Jared had to put the shirt on right away last evening. It's a pretty cool shirt; it even lights up! Let's just say it's going to be pretty hard to get that shirt off of Jared ;) He'll want to wear it morning, noon and night AND wear it every day. It was very nice of Tammy to give that to Jared!



Sunday, October 07, 2007

Jayson got married!

Today, we were able to celebrate, with friends and family, Jayson (Paul's cousin) and Lisa get married. It was a beautiful wedding and the Arizona weather was perfect! They had an outdoor wedding here in Mesa, AZ. It's fun and exciting to see those two get married. It was also fun to sit and chat with Paul's aunts, uncles and cousins that drove down from ND for the wedding. We'll get to see them more tomorrow, which is good. Jared will have fun playing, chatting and entertaining the aunts, uncles and cousins ;)

Here are some pics from the wedding...
Wedding cake made by Paul's and Jayson's aunt (Wanda). Look at how awesome it is!


More cake. It was yummy...chocolate cake with an oreo filling! Yum!

The flowers Lisa's mom put together.

Saying their wedding vows.


Reception table decorations...candles


...shells and some votive candles

...and shell-shaped candles as favors.
Mr. and Mrs. Jayson Hoffer.

And Jayson dancing with his mom (Lylia).

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Quad Equipment

Paul and I have been busy doing research on what "equipment" we'll need to handle these four babies. So far, we are looking at:

  • Getting a bigger vehicle. Unfortunately, our Ody won't handle the four infant carriers (plus any strollers, bags, etc.) :( We borrowed a friend's infant carrier and ours to try and see if having two or three carriers in a row would fit and they just won't work. We looked at a Suburban, an Expedition and even an Excurison. They won't work either, as there is not enough room between the two rows to fit the carriers or even a rear-facing convertible car seat. So...guess what we're looking at now? Yes, those big 12 or 15 passenger vans! At first I thought "no way am I driving that!" but I have warmed up to the idea of having one. They have lots of room, for carriers and for baby "accessories," and lots of easy access to put everyone into it. We are looking at the Chevy Express Passenger van. It will be big and feel like driving a boat :P but everyone can fit into it and we won't be breaking our backs putting kids in.
  • Strollers. We've looked at some quad strollers. Although, thinking about it I don't think I'd be able to go out alone with the Quads and Jared :P I'd need someone to come with me for help and for sanity ;) The quad strollers are big, not that great and very expensive. So, we are thinking about getting two double strollers that accommodate the infant carriers.
  • Feeding table for quads. Okay, this is Paul's idea now ;) There is a company that makes a table with built-in high chairs. The manufacturer says it's a life saver for Moms of multiples. Here it is. Personally, I have not bought into this. It looks good in theory but it also looks like a hassle. Too big to place anywhere in a kitchen, looks like Mom is too far away from the kids to feed them and then I can see the kids messing and playing with each other while eating, as the seats look close together. Perhaps getting four of those restaurant high chairs would work? But, we'll see if we really need this table or not.

Oh, there are a lot more things we are looking at for quads, e.g. more cribs, swings, bouncers, infant carriers, etc. Just these are the oddest things we are coming across right now ;)

Friday, September 28, 2007

Jared's Intuition

I had to post about this. First off, we haven't "officially" told Jared that I am pregnant, let along pregnant with quads. But...I do know he hears us talk about them, "the babies," and others do ask him about being a big brother. So, maybe he is catching on to this on his own. Who knows.

Anyways, just last evening before dinner Jared was walking around talking to some imaginary friends of his, which he does from time to time. He said to us "Mama, my friends (he points to the open space next to himself) want to go to the park." I said "Really?" He says "Uh huh." I then ask him (don't know what prompted me to ask him this, maybe the Lord?) "Can I ask, how many friends do you have?" Get this, he says "Four." Wow! My eyes widen and look at Paul. I then say "Really? Who are they?" Then Jared replies with "My brothers." Again, wow!! I look at Paul again and Paul gives me a shrug like "Well, he does listen to us talk about this."

I was just blown away by this, especially since we haven't sat him down to talk about this big change coming. We will, though, very soon. I know he gets the concept of babies being in big bellies, but he also applies that idea to men with beer bellies - ha! And I really don't know if he will understand having FOUR babies in one belly. Sometimes lately, I still don't understand it myself ;) But I do think once the babies are bigger and moving around where he can feel them move, that it will become a bit more real. I also think I might sit down with him and together we'll look at the baby development in my "What to Expect" book. Maybe that will help too?

Just thought I'd share this :)

My studies

Well, I've been busy trying to read two books I picked up a few weeks ago, as soon as we found out I was pregnant with quads. The first book is "When You're Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads" by Dr. Barbara Luke. I really like it! It's highly rated at Amazon and several friends of mine said to me "you've got to get this book!!" It is chock full of information, which can be overwhelming but I am a person that likes more information if possible ;)



The other book I picked up is "Mothering Multiples" by Karen Gromada and published by the La Leche League. I haven't cracked it open yet but perusing through it, it looks good. I am going to see how much I can nurse with quads. Wish me luck - ha! ;)



These are my latest reading selections, along with a few Bible studies I am going through.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Brood

Well, today's ultrasound appointment went VERY well. We saw everyone and everyone is doing great. We even saw them wiggling! What a crazy sight! Here is a picture of all of them...



More details about my appointment are at our website, under "The Quads" and "First Trimester."

This still amazes me!!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Me & My Belly

Me at 9 weeks pregnant, already showing. Guess that's what 4 babies will do to ya ;)

Thursday, September 20, 2007

3 + 4 = 7!!!!!!!

Okay, the news is spreading fast. Well, we have some good news to share with everyone. After a long struggle, we are happy to say that we are pregnant again! Yay! We are so excited and feel so blessed. To add to this news, we found out that we are expecting QUADS! Wow! Yes, this was a shock for us (and we’re still trying to get over that shock) but we are excited for this. We knew quads were a possibility but it was so remote, like a 1 to 3% chance. We had a higher chance of not getting pregnant, at 50%. So, we know this is all God.

As of today, I am 8.5 (9 on Saturday) weeks along in the pregnancy. I've already had two ultrasounds. The first time we saw 4 heartbeats and 4 sacs. Well, this last time we almost got to see 5 babies! As it turns out, 2 of the babies were in one sac (are identical). That immediately scared us. Then, we saw another baby in it's own sac (fraternal). And then the fourth baby is in another sac on it's own (another fraternal). That makes 3 sacs but where did the fourth sac go? Well, from this last and current ultrasound, it looks like it is vanishing. It is small, malformed and we didn't see any heartbeats or babies in it. Paul and I are definitely good with 4 babies :P

All of the babies look great! They are all about 1-inch long. They have heartbeats ~170 to 185, which is perfect. We don't know if they are boys or girls but I am sure I'll have lots of ultrasounds that will reveal that information soon enough. I’ll need to gain a lot of weight (as much as 75 lbs. total!) as soon as possible. I think I need to gain 45 lbs. within the next 2.5 or 3 months. Yikes! But from what I’ve read, the weight really helps the babies come out big and healthy. I hope so!

My "official" due date is April 26 but quads are delivered MUCH earlier, as in 32 weeks vs. 40. 32 weeks would make them March babies (just like Jared ;) ). I REALLY hope I make it to 32 weeks or later. The longer the better for the babies! Also, I could go on bed rest as soon as 18 weeks (or around Thanksgiving time) and I could be hospitalized.

I begin seeing a perinatologist, an OB who specializes in high-risk pregnancies, next week. Phoenix has one of the best perinatal groups in the country (PPA), possibly the world. Women pregnant with multiples come here to Phx just to be delivered by this group. That gives me lots of comfort.

As you've read, this is exciting but also can be overwhelming and dangerous. Please pray for us with this pregnancy…for my health, the babies and their health, for Paul & Jared!!

Oh, I am also going to update our website with a "The Quads" page. You can check that out for any updates, pictures (there's already an ultrasound picture there :D ) and progress. I will try to post here on our Blog too.

Jared's Awana Vest


Last evening, Jared got his Awana Cubbies vest! He is so proud of it. He did great memorizing two Bible verses...

- "All have sinned..." (Romans 3:23)
- and "...While we were sinners, Jesus Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8)

He seems to really like Awana. He gets excited when we mention attending it Wednesday evenings. He also did very well memorizing scripture by singing along with the music CD that we got from Awana.

In case you don't know what Awana is, here a link to some info about them. Basically, it is a weekly Bible-study and discipleship group for kids.

Jared also received a study book full of more to learn about Christ and the B-I-B-L-E. He'll be excited to go through it and learn!

Monday, September 10, 2007

I'm a Daffodil


I am a
Daffodil


What Flower
Are You?


The description on the flower:

You have a sunny disposition and are normally one of the first to show up for the party. You don't need too much attention from the host once you get there as you are more than capable of making yourself seen and heard.

Now, here is what I think Jared's would be ;) And here is the description:

"Mischief is your middle name, but your first is friend. You are quite the prankster that loves to make other people laugh."


I am a
Snapdragon


What Flower
Are You?


And you ask what kind of flower Paul would be? Well, if you know Paul then you know that he would never partake in such a silly questionnaire anyways ;)

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Have passport in hand, will travel

Yep, Jared got his passport this past week. And it looks so cool, much nicer than mine and Paul's. I think it's still funny to see a three-year-old's picture in a passport ;)

So, Jared's been talking about heading back to Turkey to reminisce about the good ol' times with Mom there a few years back.

Labor Day Weekend

Hope everyone has a safe and fun Labor Day weekend! We have no plans whatsoever, probably because it's been so hot recently and so it hurts to even step outside. It's been 110+ degrees - blech!

Jared desperately wants to go outside...to either play baseball, to mow the grass (as you know, he's a die-hard mower ;) ), to go to the park, to ride his scooter or just to go outside to go outside. So we've been telling the guy that it has to get cooler in order to go outside. Just this morning he said to us with enthusiasm, "mama, it's cooler now!" I had to break the news to him that it was only 8:00 in the morning and so it's just a little cooler, like 90 degrees. Poor guy :( Although, this kind of weather does lend itself opportunities to swim in our pool, which we just did last evening with Grammy and Tyler. So, that should be a good compromise, right? :)

Can't wait until it's late October. Ah, the cooler weather will be so awesome! Plus, we have a trip to Flag planned so that will be fun.

Well, everyone have a good three-day-weekend! Have fun!!


P.S. How is it September already?! Man, time flies!!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

World Traveler

Jared will be getting his very own passport in the future! We might be doing some traveling into Canada so we thought it might be good for him to get a passport now. It sounds, and feels, strange to be getting a three-year-old a passport but apparently everyone needs a passport. We filled out the passport application (for a three-year-old?) and Paul got Jared his passport pictures taken the other night (again, for a three-year-old???). It will be funny to finally get Jared's passport. Now, he can travel the world ;)

Friday, August 17, 2007

It's Done!

Yay, our landscape project is done! Woo hoo! We are absolutely pleased with how well it turned out. No more plants that we dislike, plants too big for certain areas and plants that took over our yards. We have more grass for Jared to play on. We have a nice pavered sidewalk to walk on instead of trudging through lots of rock. We love the new patio and the trees and plantings. The huge boulders and mounding give our yards more character. Well...there's just lots that we like about it now :) We can't wait for the cooler months in which we can fully enjoy our new outdoors!



More pictures of the finished product are at our website, under "House" and "Re-Landscaping."

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