Thursday, June 30, 2011

My little model

Little Miss Jenna is growing up too fast! Where's the pause button?! Aaron and I have both made comments lately about how day grown-up she seems. Makes us both sad. Anyway, Jenna was playing outside in her cute little dress, so I decided to take some pics. She was kind of a goof ball, but I'm happy with how they turned out. The kid is just way too photogenic!

I think this is her best expression, so carefree. :)

I love her sassy little stance. It's so HER! Along with her cowboy boots!

Just having some fun!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Just like daddy

Jon, our neighbor, rigged this up for Brody one day. He hooked his sled up behind his John Deere trike. At first, I thought he just wanted to pull something around. Then, I found out that he wanted to "drag the field" like Daddy does at the baseball field. Aaron has let Brody ride on the tractor with him lately and needless to say, the kid loves it. So, this is what he does. He "drags the driveway." :)

Ready to play ball: Tee, Bat and Balls
About this point of him driving around Jenna yelled at him to pretend he was in a parade, so...
...he of course had to wave to the crowd!!

Multi-taskin' Mama

I remember being in the ultrasound room when we found out we were having twins. The second thing the ultrasound tech told me "you're going to need to be really organized." Ok, I'm sort of middle of the road on that. For some things I'm super organized, for others not so much. It's a matter of priority for me. For example, I think it's more important I hang out and play with my kids as opposed to having house that is insanely clean. I try to keep it sorta clean, but I'm just not a psycho about it. Who cares?! Plus, it makes me uncomfortable to be in a house that is super clean.
This is a common scene at our house. Sometimes a necessity, sometimes a timesaver. :)

Anyway, I've been trying to be more organized and efficient since we've all been home together. I try to get Blake's meds all measured out and ready to go at nite for the next morning. I try to get as much of Blake's dialysis stuff done before we go to the baseball game so it will be less chaotic when we get home. I try to make bathtime organized. Sometimes I feel like I'm doing 12 things at once, but later when things are ready to go it makes it all worth it.

So, if any of you multi-tasking/organized moms out there have any tips/tricks to share with me, please do! I would love to hear them.

Sunday, June 26, 2011


The other nite the kids and I went outside to enjoy a beautiful Friday evening and they wanted to blow bubbles. Luckily we had two leftover bottles from last summer, so they blew a lot of bubbles!

I think blowing bubbles is so relaxing and fun! And, sort of calming to see all those bubbles just floating around in the air.

Jenna is quite the bubble-blower. Brody needs to work on his technique. He still does the thing where he blows entirely too hard and bursts the bubble.

Brode loved watching them float up to the sky.

The other thing about bubbles is...they make for pretty pictures. :)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Change of Heart

I may have to take back my words. Eat crow. Whatever. When I found out I was expecting twins one of my first thoughts was, "I'm not going to dress them exactly alike." If other people want to buy us matching outfits, that's great, but I'm not personally going to buy them matching stuff. I thought if I bought them "coordinating" outfits that would be just fine. You know like, same plaid outfit, but in different colors.

So, now I have twins. At home. Together. Friday night we went out for our first outing and I dressed them alike. And they were so CUTE all matchy-matchy! Now, all I want to do is dress them the same. Plus, on Sunday, we headed up town dressed completely different (no coordination whatsoever) and I had a couple of older ladies ask me if they were twins. It might eliminate that question if they are the same.

What do you think? Dress them identical or not?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

So HAPPY together!

We made it home on Friday afternoon to find that Jenna and Brody had done some nice artwork with Grandma Linda to welcome Blake home.

Friday night State Center's annual Rose Festival took place. We are not really a family to stay at home, so even though Blake had just gotten home, we loaded up the kiddos and walked a couple blocks to see what was going on. It was craziness! We were stopped constantly by people wanting to see Blake and Bowen. I think the best sign for Blake is that everybody asked what baby was the one in the hospital, they couldn't even tell because Blakers looks just as good as Bowen!

Saturday we went to the parade in the morning, followed by two of Aaron's baseball games. The kids got entirely too much candy, but had a good time. Aaron's team won the first game, but lost in the championship game.

I also captured pictures of the two boys smiling!! Everytime Bowen would see the camera he would quit smiling and Blake is just starting to smile more, so I felt lucky I captured this look. One thing we have noticed is that they look A LOT alike when they smile and sleep. You can see the evidence above. :)

Daddy hanging with his boys. Bowen is listening intently, but Blake doesn't really look interested.

The boys' new ride. And mommy's new ride too! I LOVE the new double stroller!
Bowen is on the left and Blake on the right. (Hope that helps you Grandma)

My boys! I love them!

Welcome to our "new chaotic life." Four kids is probably going to equal impossible when it comes to pictures. This picture makes me smile though, because even though it's crazy trying to get everybody on schedules and stuff, we are all together and that makes everything ok!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Discharge Day!

Friday, June 17th was a day I don't think Aaron and I will ever forget. After 10 very long weeks in Iowa City, Blake got to come home and join the rest of the family! Thursday was more of an emotional day for me because all of our favorite nurses stopped by to say good-bye. Even though we're thrilled to be home, it will be an adjustment not to see those familiar faces every day.
Blake has this look on his face like, what? Really? Are you sure I really get to go home today?

All of the stuff we had to take home!

Blake getting in the carseat for the first time. He wasn't so sure about it.

The three of us before we headed out the door!

The drive home was good and bad. For awhile, he slept. For awhile, he cried. For awhile, he screamed. The poor baby! I can't imagine being in a hospital for 10 weeks and then have to deal with all of the new feelings, sites and sounds that he did yesterday. Over-stimulation! I ended up sitting in back with him to calm him down and he did great the rest of the way.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Bands for the Brothers

The two worn out hospitals bands that you see above have been on Aaron's wrists for 71 days, since the night we went to Mercy to be induced. It seems like so long ago after everything we've been through. Anyway, Aaron made a decision when Blake was transported to Iowa City that those bands were not coming off until both of his twin boys were home from the hospital.

It was a gesture that definitely pulled on my heartstrings. Those bands were a constant reminder to Aaron of our brave little baby boy in Iowa City. They're faded and water-damaged, but today, we're cutting them off because Blakers is coming HOME!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The nice thing about boys... that when you are driving to Iowa City and you get east of Tama and there is NOTHING and absolutely NOWHERE to stop to go to the bathroom...boys require no toilet!! That's especially helpful on days like last Saturday when Brody had to pee 3 times on the 1 hour and 45 minute drive. Note to self: No more red Gatorade!!

Hot Dog Stand

Aaron put together the double-stroller in anticipation of Mr. Blake getting to come home on Friday and during naptime the other day Jenna asked if we could make something out of the stroller box. It started as a lemonade stand, but she quickly decided that she wanted a hot dog stand instead. It was just Jenna and me awake, so we had some quality one-on-one time decorating all sides of the box and cutting out the window and door. I think it turned out pretty good if I don't say so myself!
Jenna's pretty flower with a very colorful sun.

...And her portrait of herself, Brody and me. So Sweet!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Week One Training

Our first week of training went well! We had a lot of early mornings heading to Iowa City last week. Then, we had to leave about 1 PM because Aaron would have to be back in time for baseball. It is a tiring process, but worth it since it's a FOR SURE that Blake gets to come home on FRIDAY!!!

Aaron and I both feel like we're catching onto things quickly and the nurse that is training us seems pleased with us. She had us penciled in to train for 3-4 hours a day, but we usually only go for 2-2 1/2 hours because we get done what we need to.

There's a lot to learn besides just hooking Blake up to the machine. The hardest part is that if something isn't right, alarms go off on the cycler and we need to be able to trouble shoot them. We also have learned things like how we need to give him a bath, exit site care and how to change his dressing over his PD catheter.

Our nurse who trains us will randomly ask us questions to quiz us over what we have learned. It's kind of nerve wracking, but Aaron and I can handle our own. She asks us questions like: What do you do if his drain bag is cloudy? What if it has white fibers in it? What do you do if a tube gets a hole in it? What do you do if the tornado sirens go off in the middle of his dialysis? What medicines can you give him for fever/pain? What can't you give him? Ok, you get the idea... :)

We have a busy week ahead getting ready for Blakers to come home and our whole family is counting down the days!!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Our 2011 Summer List

I saw this idea in the blog-o-sphere and instantly fell in love with it! It's so simple, but when I told the kids about it they were more than willing to throw out their ideas for the first-ever Burdorf Summer List.

Remember when you were a kid and the simplest things were the most enjoyable? I want to pass that along to my kiddos. They don't need fancy toys or expensive gadgets to have fun. Just a summer day and endless possibilities. Without further ado, I give you our list:

So now I'm wondering, what's on your summer list?!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

2 months old (going home?!)

10 lbs. 3 oz. 10 lbs. 10 oz.
22.5" long 22.5" long
Aaron and I can hardly believe it, but our twin baby boys are two months old! I'd ask where the time has gone, but we already know...home, hospital, driving...

Anyway, we finally have our first comparison stick since birth since Bowen had his two month check in Ames yesterday. Obviously, Blake gets weighed every single day, so they can keep tabs on his growth.

Both boys around the 25th percentile for weight and 30th for length. I laughed at Dr. Nau yesterday when he showed me Bowen's growth. We have never had babies below the 80th percentile before! But, with twins they tend to be a little behind the curve (because they had to share a womb) and it takes them awhile to catch up. Like Dr. Nau said, the boys have a good gene pool and they'll catch up and he's not worried at all.

As we've said before, kids that have kidney problems tend to grow slower than normal. It's kind of a nice bonus for the doctors (and us) because we have a built in comparison stick with Bowen. They are very close right now in size and we're hoping it stays that way!

As you can see, they are both getting so much bigger and less-newborn-like. They are looking less-alike everyday it seems. You can tell they're siblings, but not close to identical twins by any means. The boys have very similar mannerisms and I love watching them move around and the facial expressions they make. They are very alert and follow what's going on around them. Bowen smiles a lot these days and Blake is starting to. Bowen is up once during the night and it sounds like Blake is the same from what the nurses tell us.

They are tenatively planning on discharging Blake next Friday, June 17th. Fingers-crossed that everything falls into place and we can all be under one roof!!!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Lovin' us some summer

With temperatures in the upper 90s, the kids have been LOVIN' playing outside in the pool and sprinkler. I snapped these pictures one night before a baseball game. I feel like there's nothing that makes me happier than seeing my kiddos with smiles on their faces and their laughter filling the air! :)

Sunday, June 5, 2011

We're getting there...

We once again spent the weekend in Iowa City with Blakers. He continues to do well and is making progress every single day. Right now the two biggest things are his dialysis and eating.

As of Sunday, his dialysis was at 160 mL and they had him on 16 cycles for 14 hours. The goal for home: 200 mL for 12 cycles in 10 hours. 10 hours!! That would be so amazing if we could get him down to that time. The doctor this morning said they are going to tweak his dialysis solution just a little and get him to where he needs to be for home.

Blake is starting to eat a little better. We will continue to work with him on this so we don't have to do the g-tube stuff during the day. I just think it helps when you have a parent there to work with him because we push Blake a little more and are more patient with him.

Bev and Gary Laurich came to visit today and we had a nice time catching up with them. Bev got some good cuddle time in with Blake!

Other than that, tomorrow is our first day of training. I'm kind of nervous, just because we don't really know what it all entails besides the obvious training on the machine. Hopefully we can both pick it up quickly and we'll be able to get Blake home SOON!!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Memorial Day Weekend

This herky was in the hospital and the kids loved it, so of course we had to take a picture.

A friend of ours bought these adorable onesies for the boys & I was dying to get their pics taken in them!

Guess where we spent Memorial Day weekend? You guessed it. Iowa City! To say that Aaron and I (and probably me more because I make more trips there than he does) are sick of Iowa City is an understatement. We know we've made it a long way with Blake and we know that they end is in sight, but right now it's just at that point where it feels L-O-N-G.

Here's the good news: Blake did awesome in his surgery last Friday! Our boy is a champ. :) They ended up repairing both hernia sites and there were no complications. Aaron had a game on Friday night in Newton, so we headed down Saturday morning.

What I love about seeing Blake is that he knows US. All of US. He perks up when we walk in the room and start talking. His big blue eyes start looking around and it just melts your heart! Aaron and I were both able to take turns and spend some quality one-on-one time with him, which he deserves. My dad also made his first trip down to Iowa City and in hummin'-Lar fashion, was humming to Blake and telling him about the classical music that was playing in his room. :)

Dialysis update: He stayed at 110 mL of his dialysis solution because they didn't want to risk damage to the newly fixed hernia sites. Blakers seems to be doing well and is hooked up to the machine for about 18 hours each day. The team of doctors is anticipating he will be up to about 180 mL by the time he goes home and the higher that number goes, the less time he will be on the machine.

Other random updates: Blake got moved from Bay 1 (most intensive care unit) to Bay 2. This is good can't get discharged from Bay 1, so we're another step closer to going home! Aaron and I are scheduled to begin training on June 6th. This will be Monday-Friday for 3-4 hours a day. They do this right before you go home! Also, we are likely going to be moved to an apartment style room in the near future. It will have a t.v., couch and private bathroom. Many people think we have televisions in the rooms, but we don't. It will nice to not be cramped.

I'm heading down today again with my co-pilot, Mr. Bowen. We're praying for safe travels and continued progress!

Our four baby dolls

All six of us. Can't wait for us all to be home. :)