Saturday, June 30, 2012

Fun in the Pool!

Rachel and Haley love the water.  Haley especially LOVES the water!  The girls got in their little pool and had a great time cooling off in this HOT Texas weather.  I remember last year when we got this little pool, Rachel was scared to go in it.  Now she loves it!  It's great entertainment for my girls.  Gotta love swimming pools for these hot Summer days!

You can just see the excitement on the girls faces, especially Haley's.  They had so much fun!


Sunday, June 24, 2012

Saturday at The Children's Museum

My parents came to visit us this weekend.  We wanted to get out and do something different and in order to stay cool in this near 100 degree weather here in Houston we decided to visit The Children's Museum.  The girls had been to this museum before, but it was when we went to a NICU reunion over a year and a half ago.  The girls had just turned one back then.  So we thought this would be great for them and it was an excellent choice to stay cool and to get the girls out.  The Children's Museum is really great, but it's more geared for older kids (5 and up).  There was a nice toddler area for children under 3 years old so that is where we spent most of our time.  Rachel and Haley enjoyed it!  Rachel went wild and ran around exploring things.  Since Haley can't see well, I guided her around and helped her explore.  The girls had a great time and by the time we left, they were so tired.  We look forward to visiting this museum again when the girls are older.

In front of the Children's Museum entrance
Rachel and Haley playing in the toddler area
Rachel and Haley having fun
Rachel and Haley
Haley really liked these spinning flowers. 
Rachel exploring the lighted peg board
Haley checking out the lighted peg board
Rachel enjoying the large mirror
Rachel and Haley
My mom with a very tired Rachel and Haley.  They wore themselves out!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Flashback Friday: Daddy and his Girls

So since Father's day was not even a week ago yet,  I wanted to post this picture of daddy and his girls taken two years ago back in June 2010.  Rachel and Haley were 10 months old.

Daddy and his girls (June 19, 2010)

Monday, June 18, 2012

Father's Day 2012

Daddy with his girls (Haley, Kayla, Rachel)

This Father's Day post written by Thomas (Daddy):

Father's day is a very special day for me. A day that I get to remember all that my Father has done for me. I am grateful for my Father who has always been there for me in my life. He is truly one of my heroes. He is a man that I look up to and admire for who he really is. He has been a constant example to me in my life of how to live and how to serve others. I love him for that. I want him to always know how grateful I am for him and how much I love and admire him. Happy Fathers Day Dad.  On Father's day, I have the opportunity to take a step back and ponder on my sacred role as a Father. I have been so blessed to have my beautiful daughters Haley, Rachel and Kayla. I sometimes wonder why the Lord has blessed me with these three precious girls. They are the light of my life. I cherish them beyond measure. Words can not express the love I have for each one of them.  They have a away of cheering me up when I am discouraged or sad. They make me laugh when I need to laugh. God be thanked for these most beautiful daughters. I hope that I can be as good as a father as my Dad has been to me. I also am grateful to the Father of us all, our Heavenly Father. I know that I am nothing without him. He is indeed the perfect Father, and I owe everything to him. I am so eternally grateful that my Heavenly Father loves me despite my imperfections and who has allowed me to be a Father. I know that Fatherhood is my most important and sacred responsibility here upon the earth. I hope and pray that I can be the Father that I know I ought to be. Happy Fathers day to all Dads out there.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Doctor Appointments update

When Rachel and Haley first came home from the NICU, they had so many doctor's appointments.  I remember taking them to one doctor or another once or twice a week for several weeks.  Well as they have gotten older they have gotten stronger and healthier and therefore no longer need to go to the doctor several times a month.  They usually see the various doctors they have every 6 months to a year or as needed.  The only specialist the girls see often is the audiologist who we sometimes see a couple of times a month since their hearing aids are always getting broken. 

Rachel and Haley saw their Pediatric Neurologist (Dr. Carlos Rivera) earlier this week.  They both got a good report from the doctor.  He is happy with the progress they have made since they saw him last year.  We are so happy that Rachel and Haley are doing well with their motor development and in general doing well neurologically.  They have come so far and just continue to move forward.

Haley had a follow up appointment with the pediatric endocrinologist this week as well.  With her current height measurement (2 feet, 7 inches), the doctor was happy with her growth in height velocity though Haley is still not on the growth chart.  The endocrinologist is still recommending growth hormone, but told us that we can continue to monitor Haley's growth and see if she starts to catch up to the growth chart before we make any decisions about the growth hormone therapy.  The endocrinologist will see Haley again in 6 months.  I really do hope that Haley has a growth spurt, but if she doesn't it's okay.  There is nothing wrong with being short and small.

I'm so very grateful for all the progress they have made.  Rachel and Haley are working so hard doing their therapy everyday.  We thank all the therapists that work with Rachel and Haley.  They are doing a good job with them and they have helped them come so far.

Here is another picture from the photo shoot I did with them a couple of weeks ago.  I didn't have any recent pictures from this week.

Rachel and Haley

Monday, June 11, 2012

Kayla is 6 Months Old!

Kayla is 6 months old!  Time has gone by fast and she is already 1/2 a year old.  She is so much fun at this age.  I love her smiles and giggles.  I love how she greets me with a big smile.  She loves to be held and will nestle her head on my shoulder.  I love my little Kayla so very much!  

 Kayla had her 6 month check up today and she is 13 lbs, 12oz (10% ile) and is 24.75 inches (17% ile).  Her weight for length is at the 15% ile.  She continues to be little and petite, but she is healthy.  She does have reflux and spits up a lot.  Her doctor put her on Prevacid so I really hope that medication helps her.  She got her 6 month shots and tolerated them well.  Of course she cried, but soon forgot after a couple of minutes.  She is a happy baby most of the time.  She has the cutest laugh and smile.  She loves attention.  She will meet others with her big contagious smile.  Though she does have some stranger anxiety and I have to be near by or she gets upset. 

So what has Kayla been up to the past month?  Lots of things!  After trying rice cereal with her when she turned 5 months, I started introducing stage 1 vegetables.  I thought she wouldn't really like them, but I was wrong!  She likes all the vegetables, even the peas!  I have also started her on fruits and of course she likes them as well.  She eats baby food better than the formula though she isn't a big eater in general.  She still is not sleeping through the night.  She will go 5-6 hours or sometimes less between feedings at night.  Her doctor thinks her reflux is keeping her from eating enough during the day and therefore causing her to wake up at night wanting to eat.  So I usually get up one time in the middle of the night to feed her.  Oh how I wish she would sleep a good 10-12 hours straight.  Hopefully one day!

In her new highchair ready to eat
Kayla is a very curious little girl and loves to look at everything and of course wants to grab everything and put it in her mouth.  She enjoys putting her toys in her mouth.  Kayla also likes the iPad and will roll to her tummy to look at it and touch it.

playing with her toys
Loving the iPad
Kayla is doing so well with tummy time now.  I put her on her back on the floor and she will roll to her tummy fast.  Kayla rolled from her back to her tummy for the first time on May 12.

Kayla is active.  She wiggles and squirms so much when I hold her.  She just can't sit still for a long amount of time.  We put her in the doorway jumper for the first time last week and she loved it!  She likes to jump just like Haley.

Having fun jumping
Kayla is doing well and she is developing her own personality.  She can be a sweet little girl at times and she can be feisty at other times.  She is a beautiful little miracle and I can't express enough how grateful I am that she joined our family.  She loves her sisters, Rachel and Haley.  I see it in her eyes as she watches, laughs and smiles at them.  What a special bond Kayla will have as she grows up together with Rachel and Haley.


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Haley and Rachel - Part 2

I'm always wanting to do photo shoots so I can practice taking pictures and practice editing pictures.  I really enjoy editing my pictures afterwards and I try not to do much editing to the pictures, but usually have to fix lighting, exposure, saturation, etc.  I recently learned about shooting pictures in RAW, so I just had to try it out with my camera and the editing of RAW pictures.  I did a photo shoot using RAW with Haley and Rachel.  They wore the cutest matching outfits.  I wish I could have gotten hot pink bows in their hair, but Haley and Rachel will not keep them in.  As soon as I put bows in their hair they come out.  So my girls hair continues to be on the messy side.  I hope one of these days they will love to have bows in their hair.  Till then, here are the results of my photo shoot in RAW.

Haley and Rachel

Rachel and Haley - So CUTE!



Friday, June 1, 2012

Haley and Rachel - Amazing Girls!

Rachel and Haley are just 2 months away from turning 3 years old!  My miracle little girls are growing up and are making progress in their development.  I can't say it enough, but Rachel and Haley are amazing little girls.  They are fighters.  They don't give up.  They have come so far since their unexpected birthday (August 4, 2009).  Yes they have challenges, but those challenges don't seem to slow them down.  Just amazing! They are beautiful daughters of our Heavenly Father.  Thomas and I love them so very much! 

Rachel and Haley

Haley :
Haley is so active.  She just doesn't stay still and has been climbing on the sofa and climbing on her toys.  She is a little daredevil.  She is doing great at getting around even with her very limited vision in her right eye.  She doesn't have any vision in her left eye.  She loves to be held and cuddled.  She is doing well at wearing her hearing aids.  We can tell she hears good enough with her hearing aids on, but she is still not saying any words.  She is vocal, but no words yet.  She is doing good with her eating, but we are still working on increasing texture in her foods.  She is still drinking Pediasure to help with her growth.  She is a small petite girl (she wears 12-18 month clothing).  Haley is a sweet little girl.  She has a cute laugh.  She is so ticklish! She is a lovable little girl. She loves to be picked up so she can give you a big hug. We just love and adore our precious little Haley. Haley is just a sweet happy little girl despite her vision and hearing loss. God be thanked for this beautiful little girl.

Haley laughing

 I just had to add this picture (below) from Mother's day.  Haley is just so beautiful and I love her smile!


Rachel :
Rachel has had a growth spurt.  She is getting so big and is getting taller everyday.  Rachel wears 24 month to 2T clothing, except for shirts.  She has to have 3T size shirts to be long enough.  Rachel is feisty!  She is strong willed, determined and persistent.  If there is something Rachel wants she won't give up until she gets it.  She lets us know what she wants in her own way.  She is not saying any words yet either.  It has been a challenge to get her to wear her hearing aids.  She pulls them out and puts them in her mouth.  She is so quick at putting them in her mouth.  We try to prevent her from doing it, but we don't always catch her quick enough.  We have found out that when she does put them in her mouth, it decreases the sound amplification from her hearing aids.  So currently her hearing aids are being fixed.  So Rachel continues to learn sign language.  Rachel is a visual learner.  She watches closely what we do and tries to imitate some things.  Rachel likes to watch cartoons on Saturday morning.  Rachel is still not eating by mouth.  She loves to put food in her mouth, but we have not been successful in getting her to swallow the food.  It has been a challenge!  I look forward to the day I can announce on our blog that she is eating by mouth.  I'm sure it will happen, but it's going to take time.  Rachel will figure it out, she is smart.  Rachel is such a beautiful girl. She has a smile that can light up the room. She has come so far from where she has been. She loves people, she loves all the attention she gets from the various therapists that come to work with her each day. We are so blessed as well to have this beautiful girl with us. God be thanked for her precious life.

Rachel watching the Doodlebops

 Here is Rachel (below) on Mother's day.  So beautiful!