Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Million Dollar Babies

We had a great checkup with the pediatrician today. She said that Hayden & Hank are both "super". She has no concerns with them right now, and thinks they are both a little ahead of where they should be at this point (I knew they were smart!). They've both gained 9 oz. in the week that they've been home--Hank is 7 lbs. 4 oz. and Hayden is 6 lbs. 3 oz. She would like to see them weekly, just to keep an eye on their weight gain, which right now is right on schedule. We got our hospital bill today... Many of you have asked how much it was going to be, and many of you have wondered but weren't sure if it was appropriate to ask. We don't mind telling--so far, the tally is $698,691.75!!! Thank goodness for insurance and Medicaid (all babies born under 1200 grams automatically qualify for Medicaid, and ours were 840 and 800). That means we aren't responsible for one dime of the bill... How awesome is that??? (Thanks to everyone for paying their taxes! Betcha didn't realize you weren't just PRAYING for H&H, you were PAYING for them, too!) I better go check on the kids--Hayden spit up in her bed, so I had to strip the sheets. Putting more sheets on is a two person job, so I'm waiting on Jay to come home to help. In the meantime, the twins are in the same bed, and I hope they don't kill each other. They are both so mobile, scooting and clawing at everything. Keep checking in for more updates...

Monday, April 26, 2004


The babies had an eye doctor appointment today, and everything looked normal. He has been seeing them weekly since they were 5 weeks old because of possible eye problems associated with prematurity and prolonged receipt of oxygen. He even checked them today to see what the prognosis was for glasses down the road, and he doesn't think that they will need them as toddlers, which is also good news. The kids did great on the trip over to Jackson--they slept the entire time--even through their exams. Hank woke up briefly in the waiting room, but Hayden was sacked out. They began to stir when we were just a few blocks from returning home. What troopers! Tomorrow (Tues) we have our first pediatrician appointment. It will be interesting to see what they weigh--we got spoiled with daily weight updates while they were in the hospital, and it's killing us to not know if they are getting enough food. We'll be sure to update with the latest stats from tomorrow's appt. Have a great Tuesday!

Friday, April 23, 2004

Home Sweet Home

Y'all, we are having so much fun! These babies are absolutely precious and keep smiles on our faces all day long. We've had lots of family visiting over the past few days--enjoying unlimited snuggle time with the twins. The babies are adjusting well, staying on their schedule for the most part. Hank is a great baby--sleeps right up until feeding time with just a little play time in between feedings. Hayden, on the other hand, falls asleep while eating, then wakes up hungry a couple of hours later. I talked to one of the NICU nurses tonight, who told me to do my best to keep Hayden awake, so I did, and it worked. She's still asleep, and there's 3 minutes until the next feeding. Thanks for keeping up with us... I know everyone is just about as excited as we are!

Tuesday, April 20, 2004


All four of us came home today, and my feet haven't touched the ground since Sunday--I'm floating! It is so good to see these fat, healthy babies with no tubes or wires, and hold them any time I please. We had a great time with Hayden & Hank the past 2 nights in the hospital. Everything went very smoothly, and we never had to call for the nurse at all. We all slept really good, and they were no trouble. We finally got to play the long-awaited game of dress-up in some day gowns that my grandmother Gilbert and her mother made 50-something years ago for my mom, aunt, and uncle. We took lots of pictures, and I hope to get them uploaded tonight. H & H eat at 9, 1, and 5, which isn't a bad schedule for us. Their discharge weights were Hank--6 lbs. 11 oz. and Hayden--5 lbs. 10 oz. We have really enjoyed having them home. They are adjusting fine and are sleeping soundly right now. They also slept the entire trip home in the car. I got some cute pics in their car seats... they looked so grown-up! We have our first pediatrician appt in Vicksburg on Monday, then it's back to Jackson on Tuesday for an eye dr appointment. I'm going to catch a few Z's, but before I do I, along with H&H (in their slumber), will thank the Lord for all of you who have prayed for us and kept up with us over the past 3+ months. We really couldn't have done it without you!

Saturday, April 17, 2004

Happy 3-month B-day H&H!!!

I can't believe it's been that long, and the end of the hospital stay is finally in sight. We're still on go for Tuesday. Jay & I will spend Sunday and Monday nights at the hospital. The babies will room-in with us, and we will be completely responsible for them during that time. The nurses will come in and check on us throughout the days and nights to make sure all FOUR of us are alive! Basically, it will be a trial run for us as parents with premature babies, and for the babies in an environment outside of the NICU (but not too far from it, just in case). We are so excited about having them all to ourselves, with no wires, and the freedom to hold them and touch them whenever we want to (not that the nurses don't let us, but that we're so far away from them and only see them about an hour a day). We're also a little sad about leaving the hospital. We've made some good friends there--other parents and many of the nurses. We were joking last night that we've been there so long that we've just made ourselves at home. We no longer have to tell the lady that answers the NICU door who we are. We know the other babies in there, how long they've been there, and which parents go with which babies. We know about many of the nurses families and backgrounds and how long they've been working in the NICU. We know which ones we can joke around with and which ones are all business. But we know that all of them love our babies and spoil them rotten when we can't be around. We will be forever thankful for the entire staff at Baptist, but mainly the nurses that have tended to our children. They will always be so special to us, and we plan to keep in touch by sending pictures and attending the annual NICU reunion. Just because the babies will be home soon, don't think that we'll abandon this website. We'll still update it with all of the twins' "firsts", and of course there'll be pictures! The site is doing something different with the photo gallery now, so it will be a little while before I get pics re-uploaded, but I can assure you that there will be plenty of pictures to be shared in the future. Thanks for everything, and please keep your fingers crossed that we make it home with both babies on Tuesday. We'll update as soon as we get a chance and let you know if we all survived the trip home. We love y'all!

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

The countdown has begun...

More great news! Both babies are doing so well that the dr is projecting a Tuesday homecoming for BOTH!!! We are so excited! I'm typing without my contacts in, so I'll write more tomorrow when I can see what I'm typing. I hope the twins don't inherit my eyesight--blind as a bat! Have a great day!

Tuesday, April 13, 2004


Great news! Hank has been off of his oxygen since 9 a.m. (it's 11:30 p.m. now). He doesn't even have prongs in his nose anymore. He's been doing really well, except for one little episode while he was eating earlier, but that's expected. He weighs 6 lbs. 4 oz. and is eating about 70 ml (2.3 oz). Hayden is still doing well. She hasn't had a spell since 1 a.m. which was also feeding induced. She is eating about 2 oz. and weighs 5 lbs. 5.8 oz. They are both doing so well, and we are so fired up that these road trips to Jackson are about to end--We've put over 9,000 miles on my Tahoe since the twins were born... and we can't even boast some great vacation... just trips to Jackson, MS! Thanks so much for checkin' up!

Sunday, April 11, 2004

Happy Easter!

A Tuesday homecoming for Hayden is off now. She continues to drop her heartrate during feedings, although today has been a good day for her. She is still off of her oxygen and doing well other than at feeding times. I think she heard that she was coming home, and she didn't want to leave Hank all by himself, so she decided to sabotage the plan. Hank was 6 lbs. last night, and Hayden was 5 lbs. 3 oz. They are both champion feeders--Hank took 3 oz. yesterday! He had a bad spell last night in his sleep, and they think he probably had too much to eat, so they have cut him back to 2 oz. They were sweet as can be today, and the Easter Bunny managed to find them in the hospital and left some goodies. Have a great week and Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 10, 2004


The babies are doing very well. I'm not sure if Hayden is going to get to come home on Tuesday. Jay & I are both scared that she's just not ready. And the doctor told me that it is a possibility that Hank will bring his friend Mr. Oxygen home with him when the time comes. We are not excited about that. We are dying to have them both home, but we want them home with no dependencies. I don't know if I'll have time to update since we've got some family coming in, so everyone have a wonderful Easter!

Thursday, April 08, 2004

A homecoming ahead???

It looks like Miss Hayden might be making the trip home to Vicksburg on Tuesday if all goes well between now and then. She actually was supposed to come home tomorrow, but she wasn’t eating very well this morning, so they want to watch her a little longer. We kind of kept that information to ourselves, since we knew that her homecoming was only a possibility, and we didn’t want to get everyone too excited if it didn’t happen. Her doctor has high hopes that Tuesday will be the day, and hopefully Hank won’t be too far behind. They are growing so fast—Hank is 5 lbs. 12 oz. and Hayden is 5 lbs. 1 oz. They are taking about 2 oz. of formula every 4 hours, although Hank has been known to take 2.5 oz. (oink!). Thanks so much for your prayers--we couldn't do this without you!

Tuesday, April 06, 2004

Good eaters

Talked to the nurse earlier today. Both babies are doing great. Hank is down to 20ml of oxygen, and she's going to try to take him off of it later today. He's our unpredictable child, so it's a coin-flip as to how he will do. Both babies are acting like they want more food after they've finished their bottles, so she's going to ask the doctor if they can increase the amount they eat each feeding. They are beginning to wake up every three hours now in anticipation of eating, which is a good sign. They may try to start stretching them out to 4-hour feeding intervals soon. Hayden has made it to the 5 lb. mark, and Hank is packing it on at 5 lbs. 12 oz.

**Hank and Hayden want to say "hello" to Ms. Amy's 4th grade class at ASC--thanks for the card, letters, and drawings! Maybe y'all will get something in the mail from H&H, too!**

Monday, April 05, 2004

Go Hayden!

Miss Hayden is still breathing completely on her own. She was so pretty tonight. They had even taken the little circle stickers off of her face (they were the things that held the nasal oxygen tube in place). It was our first time to see her with absolutely nothing on her face. If I think about it, I'll try to upload some pictures of her in the next few days--BEWARE! They'll make you smile uncontrollably! Hank was wide awake for over an hour tonight. He took in every inch of that NICU. I usually play "school" with them when I'm feeding them--teaching them to spell their names, how to count to 10, what the cow and pig say, etc. So tonight, Jay was feeding Hank, and I told him that he needed to teach him something while he was eating. So Jay proceeded to teach Hank how to spell "supermodel"! Just skipped right over "dog" and "cat". We didn't get new weights tonight, but last night Hank was 5-10, and Hayden was still 4-15... It looks like Hayden is pretty close to being at home in her nice, big nursery--movin' on up like George & Weezie Jefferson! And if Hank doesn't slow down on his eating, he's going to just walk right out of there! He's getting so big (funny how size is relative--we once thought 2 pounds was HUGE!). We had a fun shower tonight hosted by Jay's boys soccer team. We got tons of great stuff, and we are so thankful for all of you who care about us and the twins. We have all witnessed two little miracles, and we can't wait for you to meet them.

Sunday, April 04, 2004


We finally got new weights on the twins. Since they've been taking so many bottles, they haven't been gaining weight (sucking burns all the calories that they eat). Last night, Hank weighed 5-9, and Hayden was 4-15. She's almost to the 5 lb. mark, and she is doing so well. They took her off of her oxygen last night about 8, and she's still off of it now at noon. Maybe she'll stay off this time. Hank is just Hank. He's kind of stuck in the same spot, not making any signicant progress but not falling behind either. We're so ready to bring them home, and I'm getting a little impatient. I know they're in the best place right now, but we've got an empty nursery just waiting for little babies to fill it. They were 11 weeks old yesterday (would have been 37 weeks gestation), so we're getting close to their due date of April 25. Thanks for hanging in there with us!

Friday, April 02, 2004

Baby M

Hank & Hayden are both doing well still. The little girl that's been in the bed next to them for over a month passed away this morning. I don't know the details because the nurses aren't allowed to give out information on other babies, but it was unexpected, and I'm just very, very sad. If you think about it and you still have our babies on your prayer list, please replace Hank & Hayden's names with the family of Baby M in your prayers tonight. I only met them once--the night she was born--and I don't know anything about them, but I'm sure that wherever they are they need comfort and strength. Thanks so much.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

Different personalities

Sorry I haven't updated. As the time for the babies to come home draws near, we've been very busy preparing for their arrival--tons of little things to take care of around the house. We got to see little Hank take a bath last night. It was our first time to see him completely naked without any tubes or sensors or anything--just precious. He weighed 5 lbs 7.6 oz, but we didn't get a new weight on Hayden. She was weighed after midnight, and we didn't call to check. They are doing so well, and it so fun to watch their little personalities emerge. I think I've said before that Hank is extremely laid back, and Hayden is very feisty. Hank is so lazy--he can be wide awake when we get there and wide awake for the first half of his bottle, but the second his first burp comes out, the eyes close, and he's out cold. He does manage to finish his bottle, but you can't wake him up for anything and he just sighs like it's the best formula he's ever had. Hayden does not like to be wakened. She squirms and grunts and snorts and turns beet red. And they are both so smart already. While I'm feeding them they learn their ABCs, their address and phone number, and they can even spell their names! Smartest kids in the whole NICU, I tell ya! We're still looking for someone to keep them at our home starting in August, so let us know if you can think of anyone. Have a wonderful day!