Friday, 30 May 2008

Just the best news!

At 6:30 this morning, Dubai time, I became an aunt! Little Madeleine was born after 7 hours of labour and mom and baby are doing excellent. This is such super news!

My brother and sister in law have had a huge struggle with infertility and have finally, successfully made it to the other side. I am so happy for them! It must be the best feeling in the world to hold your new born baby. We will see her in November when they come for a visit to South Africa. I can not wait to hold that little body.

Just this morning as I was feeding The Boys I had this bitter sweet feeling that I will never have a baby as big as they are right now, right here, at this very moment ever again. As The Boys are growing every day, the little bodies become bigger and stronger and they are not the tiny little babies they used to be. I just love the way they snuggle into you when you feed them, especially when they are still sleepy or on their way to fall asleep. This will also end soon. As I enjoy every moment of progress they make, I feel sad for the phase that have passed. I guess that is just part of being a mom.

Thursday, 29 May 2008

Enough now already!

Could somebody somewhere please make the bad luck goblin disappear and send over the good luck fairy?

Little man L was released from hospital on Sunday on the boy's 8 monthaversary. He seems to be doing really well. That's about it in the good news department.

Remember about my stolen mobile? It transpires that the insurance (at the mobile company) did not update the serial number of the new phone they send to me in February and their contract states that I must make sure that they update this. So, no claim. Oh and I really, really loved that phone. Maybe I liked it too much, that's why it was taken from me. It was a top of the range Nokia with build- in GPS. So I resolved to use our spare old phone. And guess what, after a weeks use it just stopped working - I took it to the shop to check the battery, but no luck. Now I had to buy a new very entry level Nokia as I really don't have the money at present to replace my phone (top of the range mobiles are expensive here as are cars - very very expensive). Even this cost me a stack of money - a third of the month's grocery bill. So, I signed a contract for my mom for airtime for her (as a gift) and with her permission will be using the free phone that came with the deal. Basic, but a Nokia and thus reliable.

My cold is somewhat better, but I woke up at 3:30 this morning itching all over. I have big red allergy spots all over my body - the cause will probably remain a mystery. I can not think of anything strange I might have eaten, drank or came in touch with. But this is how I have been my whole life - allergic to all sorts of weird and also very normal things. So off to the doctor - not sure what she will be able to give me as medication ( because of the breastfeeding).

Saturday, 24 May 2008

Serious bad luck.

Once again, I am writing from a hospital room typing with one hand while balancing a baby on my left leg. Little man L developed a fever and started panting like a puppy on Wednesday night. I had a big presentation on Thursday for a new project and worked until 12:30 and this happened after I finally switched off the laptop and headed for bed. He didn't sleep a wink longer than 20 minutes at a time during the rest of the night. Terribly sleep deprived I dragged myself to work to print the last items for the presentation and to contact the paediatrician's office for an appointment as soon as possible after the presentation. Thank goodness! The client was impressed and my business partner delighted. And off I trotted to the paed for hopefully, something as simple as an ear or throat infection and some antibiotics and problem solved! This was not to be.

At the paed's office little L's temperature was 38,4 degrees C, high indeed, and no sign of any obvious infection. We were sent for a lung x ray to check for possible lung diseases following on last month's bronchiolitus, but the x-rays came back clear for the lungs but reporting his heart slightly enlarged. The doctor immediately recommended admitting him to hospital for a battery of tests and to control the fever and very high heart rate. He speculated on a possible virus attacking the lungs. To our great relieve the tests came back positive for urinary tract infection - apparently rare in boys unless there is some physiological reason such as valves not working, reflux in kidneys etc. Thank God that all the tests, sonars and x-rays on the urinary tract system came back with great results - nothing wrong! The doctor hopes to test again tomorrow and assess how well the anti-biotic is working to estimate when we can go home. Once again I will try to work from here on Monday.

We are at a different hospital this time - the children's ward is not as nice as at the previous one but it is much closer to home, only about a 10 minute drive which is important if one twin is at home and the other in hospital. I am feeding Little man L and expressing after for Little man C at home. Poor dad is busy entertaining C and A at home, luckily with my mom's help. I have also obtained a mom and baby room here. As an encouragement towards breastfeeding the hospital only charges R100 extra for breast feeding moms to stay in with baby (not covered by medical insurance)- I can hardly think that they cover the 3 very nice meals that they serve.

I really find it very hard to leave 2 of my little ones at home and be only with the sick baby, especially Little C as he misses his little boetie (brother) tremediously. But I saw both of them for about an hour and a half this morning and will try to do the same tomorrow. Oh, and did I mention I have the irritating cold? I am sure that more women will breast feed longer if you could drink a really effective cold medicine while still breastfeeding.

Monday, 19 May 2008

We are definetely making some progress, somewhere...

The weekend was lovely, really. We had great weather - 25 degrees C (not sure re. Fahrenheit - see stolen mobile phone below) in the middle of the day. That is basically early autumn/ summer weather while we are already technically in winter. Today is somewhat cooler though.

Friday night was spend watching rugby on the TV (super 14 series) and we had some of my homemade butternut soup for dinner. The Little Miss was busy feeding her Cabbage Patch kid some peas and used one of the Bumbo seats to house the doll. I love that she plays with this doll as it was my doll when I was a little girl and was passed on in the family to be returned to me in the beginning of the year with a brand new outfit, just in time for her birthday. She knows that this is a special dolly and that it used to be mommy's so she takes extra special care of it.

Saturday morning at 4 :45 we woke up almost simultaneously and realised that, yes! The Boys have slept straight through the night. They only woke up at 5:45 for their feed. Glorious bliss. The day was dedicated to get chores done around the home and taking A to her swimming lesson. H. gave me the night off to go to a braai (barbecue) with some girlfriends - the one girl's very brave hubby did the braaiing for us girls. It was such fun - lots of chatter and we got into the "how did you meet" conversation. Interesting - real girl talk. I am so grateful for the type of hubby and father H is - and to give me a gap now and then makes all the difference.

We had lunch and Granny's on Sunday. The Boys had great fun on Granny's blanket on the floor - rolling around and laughing with A. On the way to Gran we stopped at Baby City to buy some onesies and the great "Bright star" butterfly toy. And somewhere is the shop, my handbag was opened and my mobile phone stolen. I am soooooo upset - I really really loved that phone! It was a Nokia 6110 navigator - with a GPS. Now, it's all the administrative schlep to get a new phone. I have insurance, so it should pay out and replace it. I hope!

Earlier on Sunday morning right after church, The Little Miss baked cupcakes and the decorating happened late the afternoon. So this was desert on Sunday night. Just like mommy and daddy - loves making food and loves the eating part even more.

And the big news is that Little man C. cut his first tooth yesterday! One down, 39 to go! Ugh. I hate teething, but his seemed to have been a bit easier than his sister's did. Have the nappy rash to show though.

Friday, 16 May 2008

7 Month Report

We paid a visit to the clinic last week - a bit later than when it is suppose to be, due to our little adventure in the hospital. But all is well with The Boys and they are reaching their milestones.

At 7 months Little man L is weighing 7,360 kg (16,23 pounds) and is 68 cm ( 26,8 inches) tall. He rolls from side to side and is a warm and friendly little being. He sits unsupported for short bouts and loves to stick his toe in his mouth. In fact, we find socks are wet all the time from chewing his very own build-in teething "ring". He "talks" continuously and sounds like a panting doggy when giggling. He loves saying Da-da-da, ghhhh, kai etc. He effortlessly passes toys from one hand to the other and looks for toys when they fall. He will roll towards a toy out of his reach. He has a small bout of stranger anxiety going.

Little man C weighs 7,9 kg (17,42 pounds) and is 69 cm (27,17 inches) tall. He rolls, but not as enthusiastically as his brother and rather lunges forward on his tummy to reach a toy. He is a more reserved little person and sounds like a parrot when he laughs - a type sound. He sits very well unsupported and supports his body with his arms if he starts to fall over. He also passes toys from hand to hand and will literally arch his way out of his Bimbo seat to retrieve a toy. He does the toe in the mouth thing, but only when he really wants to - we suspect the Buddha tummy is in the way. He is busy talk-training with Ma-ma -ma and brrrrr. He is still very happy to sit on any willing lap and flirts with all and sunder.

We are every day amazed at the differences between the two. L has a darker skin tone, dark hair and grey-blue eyes. C has very light skin, blondish hair and pure blue eyes. L. has the body of a yoga master - tall and slim and very supple. C. has the body of a front row rugby player - broad shouldered and solid.

I only start solids from 6 months and am following a hypo-allergic eating plan with my kids as I am an allergy sufferer. I prepare all my baby foods myself and freeze it in small bowls and ice-trays. I promise to do a whole post about this. At present The Boys are eating: pumpkin, butternut, carrots, apple sauce, banana, beetroot, avocado, spinach, peas and olive oil. They are only drinking breast milk and some hypo allergic formula as supplement when my milk is not enough.

Some days I still stare in wonder at my kids and have to pinch myself to believe that this is all true. Mommy's heart is filled with love - up to the very brim, every little nook and cranny.

Wednesday, 14 May 2008

Zippidy doo dah, zippidy hey, my oh my what a wonderful day!

Slept a solid 7 hours last night. Am brand new shiny and happy person. Really!
I've struck a deal with the nanny last week to sleep over with The Boys for two nights of the week to give us a gap for some serious sleep. We have both morphed into sleep deprived monsters and something had to give - a silly fight at 5 in the morning as to who is the most exhausted did it for us. I wanted to get a night nurse but our nanny offered to do this in stead as she would love the extra money and frankly, I don't think she trusts anyone else with "her" kids. So, every Tuesday night and every second Thursday night she comes back to our home after night school and we have the night "off". Every alternative week she will stay after work on a Friday to babysit and sleep over which means we have a date night every second week. Great stuff!

So, immediately we set off an Friday night to see "The kite runner". I've just finished reading the book so I expected to have a lot of little items bothering me in the movie. I don't know if it is just the fact that I haven't been to the movies in ages, or that it is really a spectacularly good movie, but I enjoyed it tremendously.

Saturday was a busy busy day. We attended our church's bazaar the morning. Not so sure how to explain what a "bazaar" is, but it is a mixture of a bake sale, jumble sale etc. to raise funds. And can you believe it, we bumped into 3 other pairs of twins. We had a lovely English breakfast, some "Boerie rolls" (South- African speciality sausage on a roll), bought some "Vetkoek" - dough baked in oil and stuffed with mince, syrup, cheese etc to freeze and eat later, pancakes (like French crepes, not American pancakes and served with cinnamon and sugar). TheLittle Miss got a small allowance to spend and I helped her pick sweets, meringues for gran for Mother's day, stickers and candyfloss.

After that it was off to her swimming lesson and the to the highlight of my weekend - jip, I'm back in the saddle again! I used to ride before we got pregnant with A but never started again. Now, with the support of the lovely hubby ( he arranged everything as as surprise), I can enjoy one of my absolute favourite activities. The best Mother's day present ever. We will only go when we have the time, but I will enjoy every moment. I used to ride dressage, but am now only picking up the basics again. It is amazing how your body remembers what to do. I am beyond words to express my feelings regarding this. And H was so stunning - kept saying afterwards how great I've looked on the horse and how he saw an improvement in my whole being after this. It was also great to ride on my old friend Maluti For those that are wondering - he is an indigenous South- African breed, a Nooitgedachter horse. Known for their great and even temperament ( a bit like a Labrador if you catch my drift - loving but with spirit added for variety) and hardy disposition.

Sunday was a great Mother's day. A. made a chocolate heart inside a card at school and was so proud to give it to me. Sorry, no photos as she immediately proceeded to eat it and stuff bits into my mouth. H. gave me a great new book to read (sorry guys, no great read to share - in my mother tongue) and The Boys gave me some "Sally Williams Nougat" - I know this is exported to the UK, USA and Canada but not sure where to buy it. If you can find it, buy it immediately and retreat to you inner sanctum so as not to be forced to pass with the tiniest morsel! It's the best.
A. and I went to pick up my mom as she is sick at present and H. made a lovely meal with chicken and lamb in the Weber (kettle barbecue) with veggies. All and all a great day.

Friday, 9 May 2008

Happy Mothersday!

So it's that time of the year again - a day to honour the moms amongst us. Although this blog is all about me and being a mom, I want to dedicate this post to my moms. I will only focus on the positive toady - so hay, Happy Mothers day to all you moms out there.

My mom is a brave woman with heaps and heaps of love in her heart. She has Rheumatoid Arthritis (check the hands) but still manages to pick up The Boys for a cuddle. She always encourages me when times are tough and always rejoice with me when wonderful things happen in my life. She is a great granny and although she can not run around with the kids, she reads, plays and stimulates them continuously. She visits more than 3 times a week and I am very grateful that she fills a gap in the afternoons when I am at work, giving the Nanny the chance to do some work in the house.

My Mom -in -law

My mom-in-law is the least selfish person in the whole wide world - in fact, she's a borderline saint. She lives about 1100km( 680 miles) away in Port Elizabeth and I really wish I had her closer to me. She never criticizes, she never sticks her nose into our business, she always supports. She is still quite young so she runs around and physically plays with The Little Miss, as she will later with The Boys. She comes to visit for two weeks and in those two weeks she fills my freezer with meals for me to pop into the micro, she takes over the household and cooks every day and she tidies the kids' toys.
Happy mothers day! May your life be blessed with great moms and great kids.

Thursday, 8 May 2008

No, no, no!

How can this happen? A mom was almost high-jacked in front of the Little Miss' school yesterday afternoon. She had her two kids strapped into their car seats and had the ignition on and was busy handing the kids a snack when she caught sight of the gunman next to her car! She floored the gas and bumped the corner of another mom's car, but managed to get away (it was a 4x4 vehicle - SUV I think you will call it elsewhere). Now we have to enter via a security guard at a back entrance and walk quite a bit to drop off the kids - this will add another 5 to 10 minutes to the morning routine but at least we will be safe (we hope). Crazy, but wonderful country we are living it. I still love my country, but just can not deal with the crime.

Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Prayer time

The Little Miss, praying before dinner on Sunday ( after we rushed the one Labrador to the vet for emergency paw surgery): "Dear Jesus, thanks for our food and clothes, thank you for my baby brothers, please heel Bongi's foot. Okay, Bye bye."

On the milk supply front - 160 ml (5,4oz) - steadily improving.

Monday, 5 May 2008

Long, lazy and wet weekend.

I see that A was 3 years, 3 months and 3 days old yesterday! Nice one! Tomorrow is the annual school photo day and I went to the shops to have a look for a nice outfit for The Little Miss. Did not find anything cuter than what she has so she will be wearing something out of the existing collection.

It rained and rained the whole long weekend and was pretty cold - this is highly unusual in our knack of the woods. We have summer thunderstorms and hot humid weather to accompany rain. This is autumn, moving to winter and it rained and rained. I actually loved it as I can not stand our dry winters and absolutely love rain. A was not amused. She actually got a really bad case of cabin fever and as The Boys are still not 100% healthy we stayed in mostly. We therefore made a point of taking her everywhere either H or I went over the weekend. We also invested in a panel heater for The Boys' room (only uses the energy of 4 light bulbs) and a gas heater for the family room.

We are having this electricity crises in South Africa with our national electricity suppler not being able to provide enough electricity. The whole country is on an electricity saving drive as we are being subjected to "load shedding" - area per area gets "turned off" for an hour to 4 hours at a time. This is highly unpleasant with babies and very irritating for our business - plus devastating on our growing economy. But perhaps this is a for the best as we are all forced to look towards reducing out carbon footprint. In general we have a very mild climate in Pretoria with hot summers and mild winters. It does however get down to freezing point at night and as it is only for about 3 months of the year our homes are not geared for winter and cold, more for summer and heat. I hate the cold though.

The weekend therefore passed with very little exciting happening. The kids had a birthday party on Thursday and the mom made each kid their own Noddy hat, complete with bell - you could see this is a stay at home mom - everything perfect . A loves hers! (Big Noddy fan). Was a great party - lots of wine for the mums, imported beers for the dads and lots of interested people wanting to hold the twins. I could actually sit and sip a glass of vino with no child attached to my body in some way or another. The ice cream van came around with soft serve for all (I adore soft serve) and the kids enjoyed planting parsley plants in pots for their mums.

Yesterday was spent visiting H's aunt and uncle on their smallholding. A had lots of fun chasing the geese around the garden and playing with H's cousin Anne-marie. On our way back we popped in at the home of an old friend of ours - they got divorced 9 months ago and he stayed on in the house. She is a great gal and he's a nice fellow - just didn't work out. It was a shock to meet his new girlfriend - 5 years older than him ( I am also 5 years older than H - cradle snatcher me!), but looks at least 15 years older than him. And she has a grandson A's age. I have heaps of older friends that I adore, but I just can not see myself being friends with this woman. No interest in the babies, no offer to hold one while I was busy trying to console both at the same time. Will take a lot to get used to.

On the sleep issue things have been on the up and up with either one of the two starting to sleep through again and the other waking once for a feed. Until Sunday night when we were all awake for most of the night with two inconsolable babies. And expressing milk on Monday at work gave me the answer - only 70 ml (2,4 oz) per breast! Generally I am at about 150 ml - 170 ml (5 to 6 oz) per breast which is not enough and have to supplemented with formula as my milk supply has been low for the last 3 months. But this was literally nothing! So I started on the medication again which is not great as it is an anti-depressant and I do not like to toy with that as I do tend towards being slightly blue at times. But it helps for the milk. Today we are at a staggering (ha ha) 120ml (4 oz) per breast. Am soooo jealous of you girls with enough milk.