Friday, August 21, 2009

The Joys and Not So Joyful

Week 2: Pool Time

Week 2: Enjoying The Kiddy Pool..he spent 3 hours in it.

This past weekend we got some time with just Ian to take him over to Zurich and enjoy the nice HOT summer weather while my Mother-in-Law watched Gabriella and Vanessa. Since when I took him a couple weeks ago and he was pointing at the pedal boats, we decided to rent one and take him out on the Lake. He really enjoyed it! While Andy chilled in the front pedaling to make sure we didn’t hit the hundreds of other boats out there, Ian and I hung our legs off the back splashing around. Of course that makes a two year old have the munchies, so we let him finish his bag of chips while pointing at the scenery around us, ducks being his favorite.


Playing with his friend

After an hour of water bliss, we grabbed some ice cream at the grocery store and headed over to his favorite park. Andy ran around in the sand and water with him. Ian had sand in every little nook in cranny after that! It was so nice to able to spend that time with just the 3 of us, and I am sure Ian felt like a star. He hadn’t really had a day like that since his sisters were born.

"Don't Leave My House"

"Don't leave my playhouse"

Now it is back to a normal week, with the exception of my friend Sobia leaving to go back to her “home” country. Tears were almost shed Monday as we had our last time of letting our little ones play together. I am hoping to be able to go visit her a couple times a year. This is the life of an expat, you make expat friends and they usually have to move back home at some point.


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Official Gabriella and Vanessa Labor Story

On May 18th 2009, 35 weeks pregnant, and at about 9am in the morning I was taken off the IV machine that pumped contraction stopping medications into my system for a little over two months. I felt great and wasn’t feeling any contractions for two hours. The doctors wanted to give me one last ultrasound before they would send me home. I was taken down only to see that my girls were doing great in the belly. I then started to feel a small ache in my belly and asked if they could check me for contractions. Using my smarts, I knew I didn’t want to go home just to have to come back.

The machine showed I was having some but nothing significant. Afterwards I was checked for dilation and their was some. “Go walk around for and hour and come back to get checked.” So I did, and was feeling more pain with every step. The walk showed more dilation and this is when I knew it was time.

I was brought in the Labor and Delivery room where I was monitored more for contractions and changes in my cervix. It was going so much faster than with mylabor for Ian. They decided to break my water. Right after that the pain became worse and worse and I knew it couldn’t be too much longer.

Me in Labor

With experience from my last labor, I asked for the epidural about midway. My Husband was such a trooper, holding on to me while they gave it. Not long after that they said the girls would be arriving soon. For precautions with twins, women are hooked to a monitor and ready to be wheeled off to get a c-section. Most twin births end in a c-section.

They had to rush to put the wires on because I already had to push. A few really good pushes later at 8:47pm Gabriella Catherine arrived looking as healthy as ever weighing 2370g. I didn’t know what I was going to name her until I saw her face, but I knew it was Gabriella at first glance.

The midwife had to then squeeze my belly (I remember she was a petite woman and she was holding so hard she was shaking), to hold the next baby in position so she wouldn’t turn. It was time for me to push again. It was strange to me to be pushing another baby out while I was holding one I birthed just a few minutes before.

Me and Gabriella

Gabriella after she just arrived

Out popped Vanessa Lynn at 8:51pm weighing 2440g. They took her away to another corner of the room and put an oxygen mask on her. I was so worried because many people were crowded around her and I couldn’t see what they were doing. I was repeating over and over, “What is wrong with her? Is she okay.” All she needed was a jumpstart of some oxygen since she was born early. I found out after the fact, that it is typical for the second baby.

Vanessa Needing a Jumpstart

Vanessa getting oxygen

Vanessa After Delivery

I was now officially a mom of twins, two pink little baby girls who couldn’t be anymore perfect. My Husband and I spent the rest of the night holding them tight, even though I was sick with a fever and chills after labor.

My labor could not have gone any more perfect.

Day1- Visiting-Ian

Ian kissing Gabriella the next day

Happy 3 Months Girls!

Friday, August 14, 2009

The Reality is..

just me

Just me doing my photo thing

Over a month has gone by and my little girls are almost 3 months old. Wow how time has just flown for me. Yesterday my Uncle left and reality of being a mom of 3 has set in. My life now is really all about my kids, and at first I thought one was sorta tough. I love it though! I wouldn’t change this for the world.

Ian is my loving silly typical 2 year old whose favorite word to say is no even when you just look at him or who loves to wave “hello” at his own shadow. My mom brought over a sprinkler ball and he has grown to love it. He pops on his Winne the Pooh rainboots (put on the wrong feet) and runs into it or hides from it like crazy.


The Sprinkler Outfit

The bucket hat, swim diaper, and rain boots outfit by Ian

He is such a loving brother too. He is mostly over his jealousy and likes to get diapers or wipes for them and also enjoys giving them goodnight kisses. These girls are so lucky!

Read dis
Ian "reading" to Vanessa

The girls have been smiling for a few weeks now and are working up to laughing. They get so close! By two months they were rolling from belly to back. Also, sleep is getting better. They usually are up to feed once a night and wake up from 6-8 for their morning feed. I am still exhausted from being hooked to my pump “all day” and being up with them at night but I realize it is for the best. I know I can’t keep up being the milk source for much longer because school is starting again soon and I need a little bit more of my life back to get everything done, also I am barely able to keep up with them now. I am glad to have given them the best start possible and saving us some money because formula for two isn’t going to be cheap!

Lookin' at the mobile
Vanessa and Gabriella enjoying their mobile


One of my favorite pictures, Gabriella wondering what is up with with Vanessa being a Diva

That’s all I have for now..see you all soon!

*I started a one photo a week of Ian and myself. I thought it would be a great memory for him to have of the things we did together. Here is week one from last week.

Week 1: Blues Clues!
Watching Blues Clues before lunch

Thanks to my Uncle for all his help while he was here. I really enjoyed your visit and will miss you!

Monday, June 22, 2009

I Joined a Photo Club!

Grandma and Ian taking a snapshot
Ian and my Mom
Summer is officially here but it isn’t feeling like it here in Switzerland. Today was a jacket, long pants, and umbrella type of day. My mom made use of the sort periods of sunshine to take Ian out to feed the ducks by the creek here. It was nice to get a few minutes to myself. Perfect time to edit my new photos.

My Mom

My Mom

Yesterday I was able to take sometime out alone to an expat photography club. I brought my mom along with me to enjoy snapping photos. The theme of this shoot was urban/construction. I, for the first time, was able to get one-on-one advice with some pros! I think I did get some pretty decent shots for a person who doesn’t know much of what they are doing.

Train to Somewhere

English Forum Photogroup in Hardbrucke

Part of the Photo Group

Weeds in the City

A Weed in the City

I can still see there is a lot of room for improvement so here is to wishing the lovely dear Husband will watch the kids again so I can head out to another meet. The next one is a nice walk up a lovely Swiss mountain, too bad it is in the middle of the week!

The Nuts n' Bolts


As always, the rest on flickr.

Friday, June 19, 2009

They're Home, For real!

Twins ID Tags

Life with two newborns and a 2 year old is hectic! I haven’t really had time to indulge in the blogging world recently as you can notice and I miss it! All I have time for right now is a quick update, so ready, set, go…

We brought the Girls home on June 5th because they started drinking like pros, 65ml and gulping it down. Visiting everyday was a challenge but so worth it. They are a joy to have home now but a handful. Ian isn’t adjusting well to the change. The little man has major jealousy issues and loves to tell us “uppa uppa”, meaning put the Girls back in their bassinet. He throws tantrums at dinner, bedtime, and anytime we don’t react immediately to him. Bedtime really is the worst because he will scream and cry if someone isn’t there to fall asleep with him. I really hope that we can get him adjusted soon.

Vanessa 4 weeks

Vanessa 4 weeks old on the playmat

Gabriella 4wks

Gabriella 4 weeks old on the playmat

The Girls had their one month appointment this week and have gained weight like crazy! They now are over 3kg each (about 6.5lbs), but they sure love to eat so I am not surprised. They drink 3oz or more ever 2.5 to 3hrs. Breastfeeding really has come to a standstill because they just never seem full and I have to give the bottle afterwards. It has been rough on me to stop but if I give the bottle I know they are getting what they need. I still offer the breast in between meals if they seem fussy (I just can’t fully give it up).

Gabriella and Vanessa Sleeping

Gabriella and Vanessa

My mom arrived yesterday (yes!!!). The help is so needed because I am a complete zombie. I actually slid on my Husband’s shoes to go out of the house today.

My Mom and the Girls

My Mom, Gabriella, and Vanessa

My Mom and Vanessa's Hands

Vanessa and my Mom's hand

Time for the little boogers to suck down some more of my milk!

....As always more pictures on my flickr.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Gabriella under the Blue Light

A Quick Update

This will just be a quick update because I just have so much to do! The girls are doing the same. They tend to gain weight, lose a little, gain a little more. It is a slow process, but they are going up. The doctors think it may take them another week at the least to another three weeks. They both get my milk through the bottle and then what is left is put through their feeding tubes. I have noticed in the past couple days they have been just a little more awake during the day.

Day4-Vanessa Under The Blue Light

Vanessa Under the Blue Light

I decided it was best that I go back home to be with Ian and try to get life a little back to normal again. After two and half months I was feeling a little depressed. Yesterday we brought the girls to the hospital in the center of Zurich. They were placed in the Neonatal Care Unit. Next to it was the room for the intensive care babies. I saw one little one born at a little over 800g, so sad. I am just glad my girls are doing as well as they are.

The procedure now is going to visit them everyday and bring my milk over. It was so hard to leave them yesterday. I felt like I was being pulled in two directions, one towards my son and the other towards them. I feel that this is what is right for us now. Ian gets to spend time with us as a family again before the big change of the girls comes and I also get to see the Girls everyday. So now all of my children get to have time with their parents everyday.

Day4- Gabriella and Vanessa

4 Days Old- Gabriella and Vanessa

It is stressful no matter which way you do it, but I hope soon for them to drink well so we can be home all together as a family. For those who have to go through this, I really have a new respect for you!

I hope to have another update with fresh pictures soon. As for now, there is so much to do around the home! I didn’t realize how many baby clothes I have to go through and Ian’s clothes still need to be sorted through and fixed up in his new room. Busy Busy…

Friday, May 22, 2009

4 Days and Feeling It!

Gabriella and Vanessa are now 4 days old and what a crazy four days it has been. They have been doing pretty good but are having to jump through a few hurdles.

Day3- Vanessa

Vanessa Catching Some Zzzz

Gabriella had to have a feeding tube for one day, no biggie though. Since they have lower birth weights they need to keep from losing any weight. My feeding routines with them are pretty much a try and see if it works kind of thing. Personally I really would like breastfeeding exclusively to work but I do have to look on the real side of things. For the first 3 days I breastfed one, while the other got a bottle, then the breastfed one got a bottle, then I would pump the rest. Talk about time consuming, when you are doing it every 3 hours!! My milk has finally started to come in pretty good now but the girls don’t seem to have the energy to get the full amount they need, then a bottle. They have lost some weight, so today I am going to try exclusive pumping and giving them just that in the bottle. The goal is to get the weight on and then I can try to breastfeed again. I just want something that works for the both of us. Getting a routine, I am finding is pretty difficult.

Day3- Vanessa


Yesterday Gabriella’s jaundice level went only 4 points above the acceptable mark so she got to chill out under the blue light for 12 hours. She really enjoyed it and slept so well. I almost wanted to jump in with her! Today her levels are good.

Days 3- Gabriella Blue Light

Gabriella Under The Light

Days 3- Gabriella Blue Light

Gabriella Under The Light

Now my emotions need to level out so can get through the day. Since hearing the news that Gabriella lost some weight today and that I should try another feeding routine just brought on my waterworks. I guess it is from the exhaustion and my hormones being out of balance. If I remember correctly, I went through this stage with Ian too.

Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers. Have a great Friday!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Welcome to the World Girls!

They've arrived at 35.2 weeks Their names are Gabriella Catherine and Vanessa Lynn. Born on May 18th. Gabriella arrived at 8:47pm weighing 2370g (5lbs 4oz) and Vanessa arrived at 8:51 weighing 2440g (5lbs 7oz).
Day1- Gabriella
Gabriella Catherine
Day1- Vanessa
Vanessa Lynn
The labor went fantastic no c-section and fast compared to Ian. I will give you all the whole story when I have the time. Twins keep me pretty busy, when one is not eating its the other ones turn or it is time for me to pump. Haha. Andy, Big Brother Ian, and I are so overjoyed that they are so healthy after me being on bedrest for 2 months to keep them in. Thank you Lord for the medication, because as soon I was off of it they were ready to make their arrival.

The Girls and Parents

Day1- Visiting-Ian

I put pictures up on my flickr account for you all to see Http://

Until next time...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Week 34 and a Bright Outlook

Am I really almost 35 weeks? The safe period for the babies to be born in this hospital is right around the corner. I was told yesterday that on Monday May 14th they will be pulling out my IV and letting my body go ala natural! They also say I can go home but I seriously have a feeling that will not be happening. Last week my IV needed a refill and it took the nurses about 45 minutes to get it (never happened before) and I started getting pretty regular contractions. So it is really an all play it by ear thing. But seriously, only 4 more days for me to endure in this hospital bed! Can I do it, yes I can!!

Spending time with Daddy

Ian and Daddy spending time playing under the stairs

The past couple weeks have been a little rough. I started getting some major generalized about ANNOYING! It got to the point where I couldn’t sleep at night and was tearing my skin up. They have given me about 4 liver tests and have concluded that I have Obstetric Colestatsis. It is getting better now that I have the correct pills to take and some creams to put on. For once, about two nights ago, I slept pretty well! That for sure is one thing I miss, since at about 9 30 in the morning I am almost falling back asleep again. I was watching CNN the other morning and fell asleep; woke up 30 minutes later sitting up and my mouth hanging open, haha!

Tea time!

Ian having an afternoon tea

Not only have I had to endure that, but now they have been finding light protein in my urine so I have to give the lovely pee sample every day and get my blood pressure checked 3x a day and yesterday the dreaded catheter (2x!!). So far everything is remaining stable.

This momma is so ready to be finished. I have at least 10lbs or more of baby in me now and they are getting stronger and more cramped everyday. Although I will miss being able to see and feel feet and hands trying to poke out of my belly and looking like a Beluga Whale, I feel it is soon time for them to come into this world. They need a good stretch after being cramped up for 9 months!

Thank you to everyone that has helped me get through almost two months of hospital bedrest. Thank you Grandma, Grandpa, Lonnie, and Linda for your cards. There is nothing like getting words of encouragement. Thank you to my parents for providing me with some more stretchy lounge pants for my ever growing belly. Lastly, thank you to my Husband and his family for all the care you have given me and Ian. Each one of you has helped me pass these days without completely going crazy. Thank you!

The things Ian's Uncle does..

Clothes by Ian, Accessories by Uncle Mike

For those that want to keep an eye on the babies arrival, my hospital has a baby photo gallery where the babies photos are placed when they are born.. Click Here …otherwise keep an eye out here on my blog.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Good Golly 32 is Kicking My Butt!

I am a little on the “I’m a big cry baby” side today. As of last Monday (March 27) I hit 32 weeks and it was nice to know I arrived at the doctors’ first big goal for me. I had a pretty unemotional week and was looking forward to this weekend. They had to get my off the IV first to allow me some weekend time at home so Wednesday evening they changed my dosage, which brought on a few more contractions but didn’t change my cervix at all. Then at around 4pm Thursday they changed it again and then monitored me and I was having contractions about every 8 minutes. So the doctors thought my body needed to get used to it first so they waited 4 hours but it wasn’t getting any better. I was sent downstairs for another cervix check and it had gone from a 1.8 to a 1.5, not too bad. They wanted to monitor me for contractions again so I was on the monitor for 2 hours. For about the first hour I was having contractions every 6 minutes but actually wasn’t even feeling them; amazing! Sadly they decided this is just too much and changed my dosage back to its original. I am now stuck on the IV for awhile and not going to visit home this weekend.

Hearing this news didn’t get me down too much because I knew something was going to go wrong, but this morning I asked if I could go out in the wheelchair to the garden today and was told no, can we say WATERWORKS show! I just need to get outside and enjoy my family for a she said if I can’t mentally handle staying in here I can go out for 10 minutes or so. You better believe I am hitting that one up! It really doesn’t help, though, that the nurse just told me most people on this floor are going home today. Oh the agony… (okay maybe not that bad). Just please no more pokes in my arm to get blood and no more catheters! Speaking of blood taking, the results came back abnormal so they took a swab of my down south; it takes 3 to 4 days to receive results. I hope I don’t have an infection.

Me in hospital with 32 Weeks Cake

Me looking horrible but happily enjoying my "32 weeks cake" from my dear Hubby

The good thing about it all is the babies are still cooking and that is what matters the most. I actually got them to move around to some George Michael songs yesterday, not that I enjoyed them tap dancing on my door or doing some jumps on my ribs, but it was good to see them interacting with the outside world.

Happy May 1st!
Had to insert this funny story: I woke up this morning and thought someone was in my room so I roll over to see who. They were not quite in my room but a big crow was on my window sill stealing from me. My Husband put some juice boxes out there to cool my drinks and Mr. Crow had his gargantuan beak in it sipping his morning juice. He could have cared less that I was only 10 inches aways from him.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

31 Weeks and Continuing!

31 weeks and doing well here! Thursday I had a little sharp pain in my pelvic area so they checked the babies and me early and everything looks great. My cervix is stable at 1cm they say and just a little dilated, which is completely normal for a woman who has had children before and I just have very mininum Braxton Hicks contractions. The babies were rolling all around during their ultrasounds, so the measurements were hard to get. Due to that fact, they didn’t really tell me the size, but that they did grow some but nothing major. I am just praising the Lord that they are continuing to thrive and I am able to keep them in. I do have this strange feeling that I will last much much longer than expected.

Awesome Cars book!

Other good news is they gave me a “get out of here” date: 35 weeks! Three weeks to go..which seems like forever, but if I have made it a month here already I can do this! They did give me permission for a wheelchair ride outside once or twice a week so yesterday Andy’s Brother brought Ian over and we all went out in the hospital garden for 30 mintues. It was Heaven and really brightened my mood (Ian picked dandelions and rocks and gave them to me as gifts). They also were going to let me go home for the weekend this week but the Chief said it was too early and that he wants me at least 32 weeks. Which most likely means if all is stable at my check this week I can go home for a couple days! If I could do this every weekend I have left, I think I can make it to 35 weeks and stay sane.

Thank you to all my Family and Friends helping me get through this.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

I made it to 30 Weeks!

I am glad to have made it 30 weeks. It feels like a great milestone to be out of the twenties. I would have updated you sooner but there is not too much to talk about when you are laying in a bed all day.
Monday I had my big check and the girls are growing beautifully. Baby A now weighs 1500g/3.3lbs or 3lbs 4oz, and Baby B weighs 1600g/3.5lbs or 3lbs 9oz. This is the first time I have carried over 6lbs in my belly since Ian was born at 5lbs 5oz..and I certainly feel it all! (I have a new picture but it isn't on cd so I can't get it to from the hospital) They also did my cervical check and saw that it had improved to a 1.9cm so they are now calling it stable. The IV is still in my arm and they do not plan to take me off the medication. I was given some privileges, a shower everyday, 15 minutes on the balcony on my floor, and 10 minutes using a pedaling machine in bed (don’t want to lose that muscle.)

It is wonderful to get to those things and the showers feel fantastic! Somehow, it just is never enough. Two days ago I started feeling pretty sad. I guess the reality of being in here a long time is really setting in and the boredom of staying in this bed is getting to me. Today I really let out the waterworks and the assistant OB could see how sad I was so she brought my OB to see me (never thought he would visit me here). He talked with me a little, well more like talked to me since it was hard to understand me through the sobs. He gave the doctors orders that my Husband can sleep over here any and every night. I am so excited!!! We really wanted to do this before but they told us he would have to pay 70chf a night! Now it is free..yippie. Although he can’t do it tonight since he has to work, their will be plenty of other nights he can just stay over. I just can’t wait!

My Husband has still been coming every evening without fail, even since he has been super tired from work. I wish theirs some way for him to know how much it means to me but I feel words just can’t express it.

Playing With Book

Ian has been doing great this week. I told my Mother-in-Law she could give him a haircut since I was unable and he just looks so grown up. For the first time I hear him say new words and saw him draw a circle. I am so glad he is doing this well away from me since I know it is hard for me when I go from being there for him 24/7 to seeing him only a couple hours a week. He is a very resilient kid!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Laying In My Electric Bed

I wish I had great news to give but I will start from last Friday. I was checked again and they said I had improved a lot and allowed me to go home. My weekend was great, I got to spend time at home with Ian and enjoy some quality time with my Husband.

Playing with Cars Book

I scheduled my next OB appointment for Wednesday because the doctors wanted a follow up. At the appointment, right away he told me that he wished he could say I could stay home but my cervix was just too short (1.07cm) and funneling. I was so surprised to hear this since I had been following strict bedrest at home and been feeling pretty good.

Baby B: 28weeks 4days

28w 4d Baby B- Nose, Lips, and Chin

Once I got here last night, they did the usual admittance check. I was hooked up to the contraction monitor and to my surprise I was having contractions but couldn’t even feel them. They put me on Gynipral through IV to keep the contractions away. I am supposed to stay on this for three days. It is noon here and I haven’t felt any contractions, so I guess all is good. The doctor came in earlier and said they might transfer me to another hospital this weekend that can handle preemie births, but she said she will have to talk to the chief about that first. So I am here to stay in the hospital till the girls make their arrival. It is going to be a rough ride.

Baby A: 28weeks 4days

28w 4d Baby A- Facing down looking at my back

I cannot believe how fast things can change without you even knowing it and even more how different pregnancies can be. With Ian I pretty much had a picture perfect pregnancy and now this is the complete opposite. I hope I can keep the Twins in, to at least 32 weeks. My emotions are really all over the place. Please continue praying for us.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

7 Days and Good News

Finally a good update. Today they gave me a full over check and the girls are still growing great. During the ultrasound Baby B was trying to look up to see what we were doing while we were checking her head size, it was so cute! I was also given a fasting blood sugar test, it was pretty low which is good in terms of not having gestational diabetes.

In other good news my cervix has gone from 1.8cm to 2.3cm while I have been on a full week of bedrest. I was hoping this meant that I could go home today but they say they want to monitor me more. I am now able to take a shower everyday and walk the halls some. On Friday they will check again to see how this activity has affected me then determine if I can go home this weekend. I am praying and praying that things will continue to get better because I am starting to go all kookoo preggo in here. This morning I have been crying at every little thing, so embarrassing when the nurse walks in!

Mommy feeding Ian Pizza
Ian visiting me in the hospital on his birthday

I don’t know what I would do without my Husband. He has been devotedly coming to see me every evening. Just those few hours of laying with him has helped me to get through this just a bit easier.

In other news, Ian had his two year check-up earlier this week and my boy is right on track! It is so nice to have that worry off my chest. I thought his speaking skills were a bit behind but everything is great, and he understands so much in 3 languages. Can I brag?

Ian blowing out candles

Happy Wednesday Everyone.