Tuesday, March 30, 2004

Look ma, no tubes!

For some reason, the site was down last night, and I couldn't update. Sorry. Great news, though. We finally got to see Hayden's pretty little face without those nasty tubes. She stayed off of her oxygen for 12 hours yesterday! We are so excited. She had to be put back on less than 20ml at 3 this morning, so I expect her to be off her oxygen again soon. Hank is still on 40ml, and I hope this will give him some incentive to pick up the pace. They are taking all bottles now--no more tube feedings, unless they try a bottle and don't take it. Everything is going so well, and we are so fired up! It shouldn't be long before they get to come home. The nurses needed the big bed that H&H were in, so they had to take them out and put them in separate smaller cribs. The nurse assured me that they can still see each other, though. I don't know if that's true, but it makes me feel better. Y'all have a great day!

Saturday, March 27, 2004

Growing like weeds

Our babies are getting so big! Hank weighs 5 lbs. 3 oz., and Hayden weighs 4 lbs. 10 oz. They are now getting a bottle at every other feeding and seem to be doing well at it. Hayden sucked her bottle (1.3 oz.) down in 5 minutes. They took her off of her oxygen today, and she lasted about 3 hours. She was even off while she bottle fed, but after they put her back down she decided that she needed it again, but she's only on 20cc of it--very minimal. They tried to take Hank off of his, but he only lasted 3 minutes. He's just on 40cc, which is still good. Hayden's chest x-ray showed that she has no more BPD (bronchopulmonary dysplasia). Hank still has a little. BPD is caused by the mechanical ventilation and supplemental oxygen they have received. It's a catch-22 since they needed the vent and still require oxygen to breathe, but those things cause damage to their delicate lungs and impair their natural healing process. (Don't I sound so smart??? Really, I'm just copying that out of my preemie book!) Thanks so much for all of your prayers. I can't wait for y'all to see these little miracles in person!

Friday, March 26, 2004


We had a good, long visit with the babies last night. They took their bottles so well, that the nurse might recommend to the dr that they get more than two bottles a day. Once they are taking a bottle at every feeding, and continuing to gain weight (sucking a bottle requires so much energy) then they are one more step closer to home. My prediction is that Hayden will come home first, since she requires much less oxygen than Hank does right now. But they seem to compete with each other quite often, so who knows what will happen. They were both so cute last night. Every time Hank would do something, Hayden would do it right after him--sneeze, smile, whatever... Y'all have a great weekend--I know we will--we can't wait to sleep late tomorrow!!! Thanks for checking on us!

Thursday, March 25, 2004

No visit last night...

We didn't update last night, since we didn't get to see the babies. They were admitting a new baby to the NICU, so they closed it down while they got that baby settled in. That's a normal occurrence, so we understood... but it's still no fun not to get to see them. Hank weighed an even 5 lbs. and Hayden was exactly 4 1/2 lbs. Jay has a meeting in Jackson today, so he'll check on them while he's over there, then we'll head over there tonight. If it's not too late, I'll update when we get home tonight.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Hank needed some coffee...

Both babies are doing well tonight. Hank had a spell this morning where he dropped his heartrate to 40 and his oxygen to 40%. It took them a while to get him back up to normal, then they gave him some caffeine, and he seems to be doing well now. He just needed his morning cup of coffee! We can pretty much say that he is 5 lbs. now (he's actually .2 ounces under). Hayden is moving on up at 4 lbs. 7.6 oz. Sorry I didn't update yesterday... sometimes there just aren't enough hours in the day... Thank y'all for keeping up with us!

Sunday, March 21, 2004

Both are past 4 pounds!

We're still hanging in there. Hank is up to 4 lbs. 12.8 oz, and Hayden is at 4 lbs. 2 oz. We fed them their bottles at 6 this evening and are now back home at a reasonable time. I think I'll take advantage of it and hit the sack early. Have a great week!

Saturday, March 20, 2004

A couple of scares....

Everyone is still doing well. Hank and Hayden do a pretty good job taking their bottles for us, but some of the nurses have had some trouble with them. Last night and tonight, both H & H were turning blue and not breathing well during their feedings. That can be pretty scary for Jay & me. Successful bottle feeding comes with time, but we're so impatient because we want them home! H & H are in an open crib now--actually they are in the same bed they've been in, but they've lifted the top up. We wrap them up like little burritos, and they just sleep and sleep. We found out that day-care is out of the question for preemies like ours. They don't need to be around other children and get their cooties, because their immune systems and lungs are so immature for the first couple of years. So, please pray that we can find someone dependable who'll love our children and take very good care of them in our home. Thanks for staying interested in us!

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Jay's #2 #2...

Hayden & Hank are doing great. We fed them their bottles tonight and "kangarooed" again. They are so precious, and we love just looking and them and inspecting all of their pieces and parts. Jay got another poopy diaper from Hank tonight (I'm so excited!). Hayden has finally hit the 4-pound mark, and Hank is 4-8.8. If she keeps up her weight for another day or so, they'll lift the top of their bed up, and they'll begin to sleep in the open air (the bed they're in provides extra heat for their little bodies, since they don't regulate their temps very well yet). Just another step closer to coming home. Hayden is on just a tiny whiff of oxygen, and Hank isn't far behind her. It will be so nice to see their sweet faces without any tubes attached! Please pray that they will continue to eat well without dropping their heartrate or oxygen saturation, and that they will begin to take more than just 2 bottles a day. Pray that their dependence on oxygen will continue to decrease and that we won't see any long-term effects of Hank's brain bleed. We can't wait for y'all to meet them!!!

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

Happy St. Paddy's Day!

Hayden's finally drinking a bottle!!! Her nurse gave her one this morning, and she did really well with it - took the whole thing. So, I gave her another one this evening, and she sucked it down in 10 minutes. Hank is still enjoying his bottle. Jay finally got his first poopy diaper tonight. It was great! At first, Hank's diaper was only wet, and the second Jay touched him with the wet wipe, he started pooping and didn't stop. It got on Jay's hand and Hayden's leg. It was everywhere! I loved it and even broke out the video camera. The kids are going to hate me when they're older! They are doing really well and are on even less oxygen today. I'm not sure Hayden really needs her oxygen, since her prongs stay out of her nose. She's constantly pulling them out, so I don't think she's getting very much benefit from it. She weighed 3-15 again, and Hank went up to 4-8. It looks like they might be coming home within the next 2.5 to 4 weeks. Please pray for them to continue to progress well toward coming home, especially without oxygen or monitors or anything. Thank you all so much!

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Kangaroo Who?

Tonight we got to "kangaroo" the twins. This means that we held them on our bare chests. Studies have shown that kangaroo care helps improve the babies' oxygen saturation, heartrates, etc. All four of us enjoyed it tonight. The babies slept peacefully, and they were so warm and snuggly. Hank weighed 4 lbs. 6.6 oz. and Hayden weighed 3 lbs. 15.4 oz. Hank sucked down his entire bottle of 38ml in about 15 minutes. We found out today that he has a heart murmur. It could be caused by a flap valve that isn't closing or a hole in one of the filling chambers. It's a wait-and-see thing, so that's what we'll do. Hopefully, it will resolve itself in the coming months. Please keep all of us in your prayers!

Monday, March 15, 2004

Hank loves to eat!

Both babies are still doing great. Hank is a champion bottle feeder. He sucked down all 35ml tonight. We tried Hayden again, but she still wouldn't suck the bottle. She'll suck her pacifier all day long, but she won't have anything to do with the bottle. Hank weighed 4 lbs. 4 oz. last night, and Hayden was up to 3 lbs. 13 oz. Hayden had a routine chest x-ray today, and Hank had a routine echocardiogram. We hope to get the results tomorrow. They will both get their 2-month shots on Wednesday. It's hard to believe it's been that long since they made their grand entrance. Hayden is on a tiny bit of oxygen still, and Hank is on more oxygen than her, but way less than he started out on. It seems that she is the better breather, and he's the better feeder. Please pray that she will figure out this bottle thing and start gaining more weight, and that Hank will begin to rely on his oxygen less and less. Also, pray for good results on their tests they had done today. I wish you all could see them in person, to know just how much your prayers have worked. It's a miracle that we've made it this far without any major difficulties. Of course, the effects of Hank's brain bleed will not be known for some time, probably years. Many have asked exactly what a brain bleed is, and what it means in the long run. Hank's was a Grade 3, which can cause nothing at all or something as severe as cerebral palsy. You can read more about it at http://www.peds.arizona.edu/neonatology/ivh.html

Saturday, March 13, 2004


Hank took his first bottle tonight!!! His sweet nurse decided that he might be able to try a bottle. We didn't expect him to take very much of it, since it was his first time, but the little booger took the whole thing--a little more than an ounce! We've got quite a chunk on our hands, since he now weighs 4 lbs. 2 oz. Hayden tried her bottle, but preferred the lazy way of eating--the feeding tube. She loves her pacifier, though, so I guess they'll try a bottle on her another day. She weighed 3 lbs. 12 oz. We got some good lovin' from them tonight--poor Hank was worn out after sucking on that bottle. He just sacked out afterwards. I took some pictures last night, and I've put them in the gallery... Enjoy!

Friday, March 12, 2004


We didn't update last night because we didn't get back to Vicksburg until about 11:30, then we worked on the nursery, hanging the window treatment and putting the finished touches on the furniture. We had another fun visit with the twins. I can't say enough just how CUTE they are. It is the sweetest thing to watch them sleeping together, holding hands. They woke up when we changed their diapers, and they just looked at each other like, "Hey, I know you!". Apparently, they aren't always that sweet - the nurse said that Hank had been hitting Hayden earlier, and it looked like he knew exactly what he was doing--how funny! Jay & I sat next to each other while he held Hank, and I held Hayden. We put their little heads together and really got to inspect them. It's so neat how different they are--he's got an olive complexion while her skin is very fair and pink. He has dark, thick hair and long dark eyelashes. Hayden's hair is very fine and light, and she has hardly any eyelashes (and no eyebrows like her mom). The nurses all think Hank looks just like Jay, and Hayden looks like me. As far as their skin color goes, they're right. But I think Hank looks like Jay's nephew, Wes--especially the dimple in his chin. Hayden looks just like my baby pictures. I can't wait to get them home, so folks can see them in person. Cute, cute, y'all! Just cute! (New pics are in the gallery)

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

H & H are in the same bed!

They put them together Tuesday night after we left, and they loved it. They slept soundly, and even touched each other some. They even had clothes on tonight for the first time... so cute! We held them for about an hour, and they slept the entire time. They were wide awake when we first got there, though. I can't wait to get them home to show them off! Thanks for keeping up with us--we love y'all!

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

What a fun night!

YAY!! Jay & I got to hold BOTH babies at the same time. I wish you all could have seen them together, all wrapped up in the same blanket. They were so cute! We took a lot of pictures, but they were with "real" cameras, so I have to get the film developed before I can put them on the site. Hayden had her little hands all over Hank's face. He didn't try to touch her though, because we all know that girls have cooties. ;) They did really well and seemed to enjoy being together again (we could tell by their oxygen saturation, heartrate, etc.). We're both so excited, I'm not sure we'll be able to go to sleep. Hank weighs 3 lbs. 14 oz.--such a big boy. Hayden weighs 3 lbs. 9 oz. and had scooted all of the way to the top end of her crib and turned herself completely sideways when we got there. She has been nicknamed "Scooter"... I hope it doesn't stick! I think they will try to bottle feed the twins next week. Tonight, Jay & I "fed" them (we held the syringes that contain the formula that their feeding tubes are attached to). Hank's nurse put a few drops of formula in Hank's mouth to let him taste it to see if he would start trying to suck, but he wasn't interested. Jay took care of Hayden tonight, and I took care of Hank. Jay dodged another bullet tonight, because Hank's diaper was nasty! He'll get a good one one of these days... Thank y'all so much for the prayers... I hope you can see how they are working... Y'all must be praying for us, too, because we thought that their time in the hospital would drag on, but it's really flown by. And we've only gone crazy a few times! ;) Okay, I'VE only gone crazy a few times! Jay's pretty much been just Jay. Whew--what a night--I'm going to try to settle down from this high I'm on. I hope to have pictures up by the end of the week (I hope they're good!). Y'all have a great day!

Monday, March 08, 2004


Hank & Hayden were sleeping soundly when we visited tonight, so we didn't disturb them. We just watched them sleep--what funny faces they make! We got lots of good news tonight--both of them are on minimal oxygen flow. The highest flow is 2 liters, which is what Hank was on last night, and has been on since he got off of CPAP weeks ago. Tonight Hank was on .5 liter, and Hayden was about .2 liter. I think Hank feels a little bit of competition with his sister back next to him, so that's why he's started doing good all of a sudden. Neither of them have their booger hoods anymore, and for the hour that we were there tonight, none of their alarms (heartrate, breathing, and oxygen saturation) went off. That's a first!!! And the eye doctor didn't find anything abnormal last night. Praise God!!! I think we're finally on the downhill stretch, and we thank you for all of your prayers!

Sunday, March 07, 2004

Hayden's new home...

Hayden has moved to the step-down side of the NICU with Hank. She's in her own incubator, though, until they are a little more stable. It's nice to have them back next to each other, so we can keep an eye on both of them at the same time. She was wide awake tonight and very squirmy. I told the nurses if they weren't careful, my kids might just walk right out of there! They are both so wiggly! The eye dr checked them out tonight, and I'll know what he says tomorrow. Pray for good news! Have a great week!

Saturday, March 06, 2004

Still gaining good weight...

Our babies sure are getting fat! Hayden weighs 3 lbs. 5 oz., and Hank weighs 3 lbs. 10 oz.!!! He has more than doubled his birthweight! They were sweet, sweet tonight. I called ahead to make sure the nurses saved weighing and diaper changing until we got there, so we could do it. Hayden is so strong. She can pick her head all the way up and look around. And scoot! That little girl can scoot like a champion! She almost looks like she's crawling. Hank is funny, too. He slept the whole time tonight, but you can tuck him in really good, and the next thing you know his left foot is sticking out. He's not comfortable unless he's got his left foot poking out of his snugglies. Y'all keep praying that Hayden will be healed of her staph infection (we think she is, but we aren't sure). That way she can join her brother in his bed. I can't wait to see them all cuddled up together!

Thursday, March 04, 2004

Hayden's head scan came back normal. Hank's scan showed his ventricles being about the same or slightly smaller, but there definitely isn't any swelling going on. They will do another scan in a week or two. It doesn't look like I'll be visiting them tonight, either, since my cold is worse today. I hate not seeing them, but I'd also hate to pass my germs along to the twins or anyone else in the NICU. Jay is going tonight and will bring pictures back for me to see. I'll definitely go tomorrow--even if they have to put me in a bubble-boy suit, I'll be there!


We didn't get to see the babies yesterday, because I have a nasty cold. I crashed after work yesterday and got some much needed sleep. We did call to check on them, and the nurses said that they were being quiet and good. I'll call to check on them after lunch, so I can get the results of Hank's head scan. Check back later!

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Getting to act like parents...

We had a good visit with the babies last night. The nurses are really putting us to work now that the babies are more stable. We walked in, and immediately Hank's nurse told us to take his temp, change his diaper, and roll him over on his side while she took care of another baby. So I did. Meanwhile, Jay wandered over to Hayden's side of the room. When I finished with Hank, I went to check on Hayden, and Jay had already taken her temp, changed her diaper (another wet one--what luck!), and was in the midst of weighing her. We are learning so much about the care of our twins. Of course, it will probably all go out the window once we get them home. Right now, they are so sweet and sleep all the time. When they wake up, they just lie there with their eyes open and don't make a sound. They're probably just fooling us with their good behavior to make sure that we really want them to come home with us. Then once we get them home, they'll change their tune completely! Hank has another head scan today, so please remember him in your prayers. Hayden doesn't have any more staph infections right now, so please pray that we've jumped that hurdle. Have a great Wednesday!

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

Wild Man

Hayden & Hank are doing great. She weighs 3 lbs. 4 oz., and he weighs 3 lbs. 2 oz. Hank is keeping up his reputation as the "Wild Man". Last night he kept throwing his oxygen hood off of his head. The respiratory therapist said she found it turned upside down in the far back corner of the isolette with the hose detached. Hayden is sweet but feisty if you mess with her. Both staph infection sites have healed well, and they continue to watch her closely to make sure that no more pop up. Many people have asked when the babies will be able to come home. We are still planning for around their due date (Apr. 25), but it could be a little earlier or a little later. And they may not come home at the same time. It just depends on the baby, how well they are breathing, eating, and keeping their heartrate and body temperature stable. Thanks for everything, everybody!

Monday, March 01, 2004

Three Pounds!

For those who check the site daily, sorry we didn't update yesterday. Jay's U-16 girls soccer team had a tournament in Hattiesburg, so that's where we were. H & H have both surpassed the 3 lb. mark!!! Hayden is 3 lbs. 2.4 oz., and Hank is 3 lbs. 1 oz. I'm not sure of their lengths, but Hank looks alot longer and leaner than Hayden does right now. They are both getting some fat on their bodies and have recently grown some booty-cheeks (preemies that young don't have fat yet, so they don't have booty cheeks). Put your thumbs against each other side-by-side with the nails facing you, then look at the pads of them, and that's what their booties look like... so tiny and cute (but they were much easier to clean when they were flat)! Hayden is getting 25cc of formula, and Hank is getting 26. They are both still on the feeding tube, but they will get to try a bottle in a couple of weeks (they don't have the suck-swallow-breathe combo down yet). Everything seems to be going great, and we appreciate your continued interest in the babies! Have a great week!