Saturday, April 30, 2016

Tube Free: Gracie & Tessa

So yesterday we made the 6 hour round trip to Dallas to see the GI Doctor. We knew back in February that Gracie was getting her g-button (feeding tube) out today. She hasn't used her button since September. I wasn't sure if Tessa would get hers out or not, but I was hoping she would. She hasn't been using her tube since February. The doctor checked over both of their growth charts and examined them and decided they were both healthy enough to live without their tubes!! I can't tell you how proud I am of these two girls, they are so amazing. I've had several people ask me if the girls are doing okay since having the tubes removed and the answer is yes, they are doing amazing. The tube stays in their bellies by inflating a balloon with water. All the doctor did was deflate the balloon (by using a syringe to pull water out of the balloon) and pull the tube out, that was it. We will keep the hole covered for a few days but that's all. The hole should close up on its own in a few days to weeks.

Updates on Mia and Rayleigh:
The GI Doctor was tempted to take Rayleigh's tube out yesterday too but decided to wait a few more months. So if she continues to eat well and grow she will probably get hers out in July!!!!

Now Mia is a whole other story, she never does things the easy way. Monday, I'm taking her to have another swallow study and after we get those results we'll come up with a new game plan to help her use her tube less. No matter what we find out Monday, we are going to thicken her liquids. Hopefully she'll start taking steps in the right direction.
Our 2 Superstars!

Lunch with our girls before heading back home.
Steven and I are so thankful to everyone who has prayed for us and our kids along the way. I'm so thankful to be where we are today with 6 healthy children. The quints have come so far in 2 years and continue to grow stronger and healthier each day. We give God all the glory and praise for our sweet blessings and this blessed life we enjoy.

Please continue to keep our family, especially the quints, in your prayers as we continue to work towards getting them where they need to be health-wise and developmentally. It's been a struggle at times and feels so good to be where we are at today.

Be blessed!
You can follow us on Facebook at Six Sweet Seals or on Instagram at six_sweet_seals.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Hump Day Humor

Hey y'all!!! So it's hump day and you know I like a good laugh. Well, today, I've decided sometimes the best thing to laugh at is yourself. See, today I totally committed a big Mommy No-No! I loaded Brady in the car, we were running late for school this morning, so I was in a big rush. We got about 2 miles from his school (which is 30 minutes away from our house) and I realized I didn't have his shoes! I immediately starting thinking of how I was going to break the news to him, and I decided I'd try to make it seem like a good and fun thing that he didn't have any shoes, well, my boy didn't find any humor in being shoeless today. He was quite upset with me and let me know all about it. I did get him to go to class and his teachers were totally understanding and made him feel better. I intended to go by him a cheap pair of shoes but his teachers told me not, yeah, Brady went to school today without shoes. I'm choosing to laugh at myself. I've actually had a couple of other moms say they've done the same thing, so that made me feel so much better about myself.

Anyways, I hope you're having a fabulous week! Here's a few funny pictures of my crew.
Brady teaching the babies how to read.

Brady needed to hitch a ride with Rayleigh and Brant.

My little guy is so sweet y'all. He just melts my heart.

Rayleigh looking fabulous.

Boots for every limb.

Just couldn't help myself. 

These french fries are yummy.

Brady sporting mama's heals.

The hubby is looking fabulous in my mom's sunglasses.

Everyone is loving sunglasses these days...

He couldn't even take them off to brush his teeth.

Sporting our school shirts.

Gracie and Brant playing

If Gracie wants to wear 3 bows, then Gracie gets to wear 3 bows.

Handsome Brant

Checking out mama's makeup drawer.

Houston we have a problem.

Mia in pigtails is the cutest!

Tessa is styling.

Brant playing with the water hose.

Mia having too much fun in the water.

M, R, G

Well, that's all folks! One piece of advice....don't leave home without your shoes!!!!   :)~
Be blessed!
You can follow us on Facebook at Six Sweet Seals or Instagram at six_sweet_seals. If you're on Instagram you should start following me, I usually put a couple of pictures of the kids on each day. :)

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Jordan & Emily's Journey

Since this week is National Infertility Awareness week, I really want to focus on this very important subject. Whether you are aware of it or not, you do know someone/a couple who is struggling with infertility. Some people are very public with their struggle while others suffer in silence. I believe there's no right or wrong way to deal with infertility, we all deal with things differently. A lot of people lump people with fertility issues together in one big group, but the truth is, infertility differs from person to person. Infertility doesn't discriminate against color, age, socioeconomic status, etc. it can affect anyone. Some people struggle to get pregnant while others struggle to stay pregnancy. Everyone's journey is different, and not all journeys end with a happy ending, some journeys are long, hard, life altering, and don't end the way we expected.

Steven and I have a some friends who have had their own infertility journey to walk. We've known Jordan our whole lives. Steven and Jordan are best of friends and have spent countless hours hunting, fishing, and hanging out. A couple of years ago, Jordan met his wife, Emily, and we instantly fell in love with her. She was a great fit for Jordan and really made him happy. After they were married, they started trying for a family, but like so many, they faced adversity. Emily suffered three miscarriages and it was a very hard time for them. Everyone who knows Jordan & Emily know how awesome of parents they would be and we all were hoping and praying God would say yes to their prayers (and the prayers of so many people who love and support Jordan & Emily) to become parents. Well, I'm so excited to write, that last month Emily gave birth to a beautiful and healthy little boy named Tucker. He is perfect and such a sweet blessing straight from heaven. God is SO good!!!!
First picture as a family of 3!!!!!!!
Brand spanking new!!!

Sweet baby Tucker.

Every good and perfect gift is from above.
James 1:17
I know, not every infertility story ends with a happy ending, but some do and I can't tell you how happy I am for Jordan & Emily. They are going to be amazing parents to baby Tucker.

Please continue to pray for those who suffer with infertility/recurring miscarriages.
Be Blessed!
You can follow us on Facebook at Six Sweet Seals or Instagram at six_sweet_seals.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Hello Monday!

Hey y'all! Welcome back! Hope you had a fabulous weekend, ours has been jammed packed with events. Last Thursday, I took Mia, Tessa, and Gracie to the doctor for their 2 year check up. They are all healthy and doing well. Friday I took Brant and Rayleigh for their check up and they too are doing great. All of the quints are smaller than they should be and that's why we see a dietitian. Saturday the quints had an appointment with the dietitian and she too was concerned about their lack of weight gain. Rayleigh's weight gain was alarming so we're going to start using her feeding tube again to try to fatten her up. The dietitian gave me more ideas to help fatten the quints up, so we are going to try everything she suggested and hope that it helps. While we were in Dallas for the appointment with the dietitian we got to have lunch with our friends Dave, Paula, and Keisten, it was so nice getting to visit with them and they enjoyed playing with the quints (Brady stayed home and was spoiled by his Meme). Paula and Kristen both came to the appointment with us to help corral the quints. We are always so grateful for extra helping hands. Friday night we took the quints to their first baseball game of the season. Our Cardinals came away with the win. Sunday was church and family pictures. Can't wait to see how they turn out. So as you can see, we've been quite busy and this next week is going to be busy too!

Here's the most recent weights and lengths of the quints. They haven't gained much weight but are all getting taller.
Mia: 21lb 1oz.    32.3in long
Tessa: 22lb 2oz.   32.5in long
Brant: 22lb 2oz.    32.5 in long
Gracie: 22lb 3oz.    32.9in long
Rayleigh: 21lb 8oz.   32in long
(Brant and Tessa are the exact same weight and length.)
We have a lot more work to do to get these kids to grow. Length wise, they're doing okay, not great but slowly growing taller; weight wise, not doing good at all in this department. We are making the recommended changes and hoping things will improve. We go to the GI doctor this week and will see what he has to say about everything. Rayleigh is back to using her feeding tube because she hasn't gained enough weight. I'm a little bummed about that but we'll do whatever we have to to ensure they are growing stronger and healthier.

To get this week started off right, here's a quote:
I wanted a perfect ending.
Now I've learned, the hard way, 
that some poems don't rhyme,
and some stories don't have a 
beginning, middle, and end. 
Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it,
without knowing what's going to happen next.
Delicious Ambiguity.
~Gilda Radner
This week is National Infertility Awareness week and this is a subject that is very near and dear to my heart. If you've been following our journey for a while then you know our struggles to become parents, it was heartbreaking and difficult but is something that has made Steven and I so much stronger as people. I'm going to try to write a couple of blog posts on this subject this week, just to share how we got to where we are today. But for today, please say a special prayer for all the people who are struggling with infertility and recurring miscarriages. 

Exciting News!!!
And before I show you pictures..and there a lot of pictures, I have a very important announcement.... Gracie Lou graduated from occupational therapy!!!! She is the first quint to be completely finished with ALL therapies!!! I'm am beyond excited for her and so very proud of her! 
My two oldest kids...Mia & Brady.

We like to go for walks whenever we can. On this particular day, one of our neighbors was showing the kids his new puppies.

Eating popsicles outside.

The girls on one side and boys on the other.

A picnic table full of blessings.


Mia, Tessa, and Gracie ready for their 2 year checkup.

The Diva
Brant taking a selfie.

Brant & Rayleigh ready for their 2 year checkup.

The others watched tv while we were at our appointment.
Camryn & Mia

Aunt Kris with her hands full.

Aunt Kayla with her hands full.

Getting a decent picture of the Six Sweet Seals is becoming harder and harder each day!
Mia & Gage

We love our Cardinals!
We especially love our #6!!!!

Eating with the birthday boy (Dave) before our appointment with the dietician. 
Love this special friend, Paula.

Love this sweet guy!

And this is what my laundry room looked like after all our running around this weekend.
Have a great week y'all!!!!
Be blessed!

You can follow us on Facebook at Six Sweet Seals and Instagram at six_sweet_seals.