Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Just in time for Halloween, Ryan caught a tarantula (and a grasshopper)…He kept it for a couple of days as a "pet" (I know – it gave me the heebiejeebies, too), and then let it go back into the wild… A spider (not the tarantula) spun a nifty web above our front steps (saved us the time of putting up a fake web for our Halloween decor)… And we made fun treats…

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

My favorite "Ryanism" of the week...

Melanie: I think you gave me the flu.

Ryan: I didn't give it to you...I still have it!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Sick Kids

Our family has had a rough week! Last Monday, less than a week after she had been released from the Intemountain Medical Center NICU, Alice started throwing up quite a bit and had blood in her diaper. After some blood work and an X-ray, Alice was admitted to Primary Children's Medical Center. She has a bacterial intestinal infection which is apparently common in preemies. She was started on antibiotics, and was taken for X-rays every six hours. She also had a tube put into her stomach to suction it out so that the bacteria no longer had anything to feed on. After several hours, Frances and Claire went home and Marc stayed at PCMC with Alice.
The next day, Marc and Frances moved from the duplex near IMC back to their own home. Our family has been taking turns staying at the hospital with Alice relieving Marc to do some work that he has needed to do. Last Friday, Ryan and I went to stay with Alice from about 3:00 to about 9:00. Rara and Papa went to stay with Claire, and Marc and Frances were able to have their first night out together since the girls were born. They had a good time, but joked that the next time we all volunteered to take care of the girls, they would just go to their bedroom and sleep! Ryan and I had a good time with Alice. She had her stomach tube removed, so she is a little bit happier and sleeps a tiny bit better. Ryan is such a good little helper and loves his new cousins so much! Last night, it was Ryan that had the rough night. If you have a queasy stomach, skip to the next paragraph. Ryan sleepwalks about once a week, so last night when I heard him walking around at about 1:30 am, I calmly asked him if he was ok. Just as I finished asking, I heard him throwing up in the bathroom. I went in, and it was everywhere but the toilet. And I mean everywhere! It was also on his jammies, so I got him new jammies and had him lie down again while I cleaned up. It took me 1/2 hour to clean it all up! I went back to bed, and the prior sequence was repeated at 2:30. All of it. We got new jammies and I cleaned the bathroom again. About every hour for the rest of the night, Ryan was in the bathroom again. At least in subsequent visits, everything landed where it was supposed to. At about 5:30 am, I called Papa. Rara spent the night at the hospital with Alice, and I knew Papa would be up getting ready for his 7:00 am meeting. We told him the events of the night, and told him that Ryan had requested a Priesthood blessing. Papa finished getting ready and came over at about 6:30 am and gave Ryan a blessing. Thankfully, as I write this, it has been about 2 1/2 hours since his last episode. Hopefully, since he seemed to be on an every-hour schedule throughout the night, he is done. I called Rara to hear about Alice's night (sleepless) and tell her about our night (sleepless). We decided that we need to tell Marc and Frances that they may have actually had the BEST night's sleep of all of us last night!

Here are pictures of the girls that we took on Friday night.



Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Cousins

Ryan FINALLY got to hold both Alice and Claire at the same time!!! He was SO excited (for about a minute, then he was done).

Aren't they all adorable? (Claire is stretching and yawning, not crying.)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Age is Relative

One day last week, Marc mentioned to me that one of the NICU nurses was a graduate of Woods Cross High School. He said as they were talking and discovered that similarity, she asked him what year he graduated, with a comment that they were probably pretty close to the same age. Marc chuckled and told her that he was probably considerably older than she was. When he told her how “old” he is, she was appalled! She said he was about 10 years older than she thought he was!

Later that day as I went into the NICU and introduced myself as Marc’s sister, she asked if I also attended Woods Cross. I said, “Yes, but I’m Marc’s OLDER sister.” Her reply was, “YOU…ARE…NOT!” Frances and I both replied that I am. After a couple of minutes of working with the babies, she said, “How old ARE you?”

“I’m 40.”


“I am. And I’ll be 41 next week.”


After letting that apparently alarming fact sink in, she commented that Marc and I must have good genes. She said that she would have guessed both my age and Marc’s age at about 10 years younger. As I mentioned in this post, I hear that often, and it’s always nice to hear. One of my friends just posted on her blog that she recently had some Botox injections. I guess one of the advantages to being “fluffy” is that my fat fills in any potential wrinkles on my face and makes me look younger. :)

Last night we celebrated my birthday at Marc and Frances’ temporary home. Ryan and Rara and Papa came to get me when I was done with work. Ryan brought me a beautiful bouquet of red roses that he picked out himself. Then we went to Marc and Frances’ and had Chinese take-out and cheesecake. Yum! We took turns holding Claire the whole time. Alice is being released today. So, they weren’t born on my birthday, but they were both finally home on my birthday. What a great present for all of us!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Claire is Home! (Kind Of)

Today is a happy day! Baby Claire was released from the hospital! I'm not sure who was more excited - Marc and Frances, or Ryan, who FINALLY got to see and hold Claire!!! (He took her a soft little stuffed animal as a welcome home present.)
Marc and Frances live up Emigration Canyon (above Hogle Zoo). It is about a 45 minute drive from the hospital to their house. When Frances was released on Thursday, and the girls were still in the NICU, all four grandparents put their heads together. Frances' mom was able to find a furnished duplex just a few minutes from the hospital. It was especially nice today as Claire was released. They are close enough that Marc can stay there with Claire while Frances goes to the hospital to feed Alice.

Baby Alice just needs to eat a little more in order to be released. As we have all taken turns helping in the NICU, Frances would always feed Claire first, since she was such a great little eater. Whichever one of us was in there helping would wake up Alice, change her diaper, and get her ready to eat. But once she was bundled back up, she would zonk out again. One of the NICU nurses suggested that Marc and Frances keep her awake by keeping her a little bit uncomfortable. So now once her diaper is changed, they don't bundle her up immediately. That little trick has kept her awake long enough to eat well. We are anticipating a Tuesday release for Alice, so we're all keeping our fingers crossed. (We love this picture of Alice stretching her little leg. Even more hilarious is the amused look on Marc's face.)It is amazing to all of us that Claire was released only one week after she was born. The first date that was discussed for their possible release was the 14th, so we are all overjoyed that they are both doing well enough to be released so soon! They are adorable, and we're anxious to have them both together at home.

Speaking of together, they were finally close enough in the NICU that we could take pictures with both of them in it!

One more cute thing to note - a few days ago, Ryan was really concerned that the girls wouldn't know who he was. He was frustrated that all of us kept going into the NICU and holding the babies, and he hadn't had a chance to see them yet. He decided that if we took pictures of him in, and put them on their bassinets, that they would know who he was when they finally saw him. We kept telling him that they pretty much slept all the time, and didn't even know which one of us was holding them, but he wouldn't budge. So we took two pictures of him and put them in the girls' bassinets. He was happy.