It's our favorite holiday of the year! And we are 7 months old!
As time moves on a torch is being passed. The torch of totally awesome Halloween costumes goes from father to sons. In true Drew fashion the boys' very first Halloween costumes are based on something near and dear to their father's heart:
Tomax & Xamot!
I had hopes that Drew would pull off a third costume for himself, say Cobra Commander or better yet Destro, but there just wasn't enough time. If these characters still don't ring a bell in your foggy memory, or if you were too old or uncool to know the GI JOE cartoon of the 80's here's a little product placement ad that might jog your memory.
We also have a couple of other store bought costumes that we just couldn't resist getting. They are not as cool as the home made Evil Twin Brothers above, but they are cute. It's quite a challenge to find a costume that will fit a preemie. Believe it or not these were the smallest we were able to find.
Some updates on how we are doing at 7 months old:
Today Cameron weighs 11lbs and Evan weighs 9lbs! A far cry from 2lbs 14oz and 1lb 7oz.
They are both growing but are having severe reflux and gas that is causing them immense pain and difficulty eating more than 3 to 5oz each feeding. The normal feeding event takes at least an hour and more than half of that was screaming, arching backs, tears, kicking, spitting up, throwing up, hurling, upchuck, painful burps, and then exhaustion so that they'd fall asleep without caring that they hadn't eaten most of their bottles. They just refuse to eat after a while because it's so painful. And all of this has the effect of preventing them from gaining sufficient amounts of weight, so now they are about 25% below the min weight/height range for babies their age. And we know they will be small kids, it's not like Drew and I are all that tall or large, but they will still be considered on the small side. It's up to us to give them every advantage as early as possible because the older they get the more difficult it will be to impact their healthy weight gain.
We were on 1/2 solutab of Prevacid two times a day which is the maximum dosage we could give them and it wasn't working anymore. Now we've added Zantac 3x/day plus 4ml of vegetable oil in every bottle. Yeah that's right, vegetable oil, and it looks nasty mixed with formula. But there is a nice side effect in that the vegetable oil makes burping much, much, much easier and less time consuming.
As of two days ago we went from barely being able to eat 2.5oz most feedings to now eating 5oz every feeding no problem! This is just one more step towards healthy Sleeping Through The Night. We're still a ways off, but I can see it at the next stop on this crazy train. Please oh please oh please.... I haven't slept through the night uninterrupted in over 10 months (that's counting at least two months prior to birth of me getting up every hour to pee or just laying awake in pregnant discomfort.)
Cameron is officially off the oxygen and the medical supply company will be here on Friday to pick up all of the the equipment. He is a healthy normal preemie with no greater risk for asthma or other breathing problems than his brother and should have no lasting effects from his extra time on oxygen.
Developmentally Cameron has had the most improvement and is starting to perform some 6 month old abilities. He holds his head up very well and is almost ready to start rice cereal. We can even hold Cameron up in the air like Super Baby with his feet sticking straight back. He can grasp things, take a toy from my hand, hold it with both hands and can even get it to his mouth though not with much accuracy. He is vocal but only "talks" to his fish on his swing, not so much to Mommy & Daddy yet.
Evan has a very long road to go developmentally and we are going to insist that Infants & Toddlers Early Intervention program adds Occupational Therapy to the Physical Therapy. He is very adamant about turning his head to the right and fights not to turn it to the left. Guess he's got to work on his "Magnum" look because he's got "Blue Steel" down cold.
Evan can hold his head up but requires a lot more propping and will only do it when forced to try. And he will absolutely NOT lift his head for tummy time. He is grasping things as long as they are slim like a skinny rattle or a thin strip of fabric but it's still very difficult. We have witnessed him reach up over his head to swat at his car seat toy or the parrot on his bouncy chair, something Cameron hasn't done yet. Evan not only talks to Mom & Dad and Granny Cathy, and his stuffed dogs Fritz & Helga, but he is also exploring different sounds with his voice while chatting with the fish on the swing. Often it sounds quite disturbing but he's having a great conversation, we just have no idea what the topic is.
Both boys love to kick and the best toy lately has been the piano kick plate crib toy I got on consignment for $2.5o. Neither baby can roll over or prop their chest up in tummy time, but Cameron can lift his head pretty well when he's mad. Both can sit in a Bumbo or Bebe Pod seat, and this week we introduced them to their exersaucer. This is a big hit and Cameron has developed an immediate interest in the sun and globe toys and is already reaching to grasp them. Evan is just thrilled that he's sitting without being held and really enjoys looking at all the new shapes and colors. I also feel we are on the verge of a gross motor skill break through in that the guys have figured out how to lift their legs while on their backs and rock them side to side. The next step is to flop over on to their bellies.
Tomorrow they get their first RSV Vaccine shots and their second round of flu shots. We'll give them one RSV shot a month until April when the season is over. We will be in hybernation until then. :-(