Tuesday, December 30, 2008

6 Month Update

I can't believe that holidays came and went so fast! I don't think that I have ever been so busy. Shopping, Wrapping gifts, Christmas Cards. Well, I only got half of my cards out and none of my shopping for Stephens family done yet, but I tried really hard.

Mitchell, Ivy, Luke, Sidney, Brie

Here is what has been going on with us this past month:

The weekend after Christmas, we started the "Ferber" method sleep training for the babies. To be short, it is a cry-it-out method. I was starting to pull my hair out running into the nursery every two seconds to soothe a fussy baby or put a pacifier back in a babies screaming mouth. I was tired of being up all night even though we have night help because there was always someone needing something! SO I took the pacifiers away and let them cry... And it WORKED! There were many times that I didn't think it would and many times I was crying as hard as they were, but in the long run bedtime and night times are a million times better. Naps are getting better. Next step, take away 2 am bottle!

We are working our way through Stage 1 Foods... So far, they like sweet potatoes the best. Little Ms. Brie still throws a big hissy fit if food even gets near her mouth. You wouldn't believe how silly I have to be to distract her just to get two bites into her mouth... After the 2 bites, it's a major meltdown. I am tempted to just let her skip dinner, but I am more stubborn than she is and try every evening. Oh, my babies reminded me that I live a not-so-glamorous life anymore the day after we tried prunes!!

This week we had sickness creep in our home. Despite my Nazi behavior when it comes to hand-washing, some how Mitchell caught a cold. Brie and Ivy caught it next and I am just waiting for Sidney and Luke to get it... Like I don't have enough to do already, we just added inhalers, saline drops and bulb syringes to my list!

The babies are rolling around, drooling like mad, laughing and talking all the time. Things are becoming a titch easier... Maybe I will survive!

More Christmas Pics:

Papa & Sidney

Stephen & Brie

Uncle Neal & Luke

Aunt MarMar & Ivy & Cousin Brynne

Aunt Mimi & Ivy

Margaret, Ellen, Amy

Grandma Nain & Luke

Monday, December 8, 2008

Look at the Difference!!

Luke & Mitchell in their portable crib in Phoenix before we came home.

Luke & Mitchell @ 5 Months in the same "crib." It's actually Mitchell's nap place as he is SO loud when he cries, he has to nap away from the others. We call it his isolation box.

Weights as of last week:
Mitchell - 12lbs 9oz
Luke - 12lbs 4oz
Ivy - 12lbs 3oz
Sidney - 10lbs 5 oz
Briellen - 10lbs

Monday, November 24, 2008

Five Months!!

It's only been 5 months, but it feels like a lifetime! The highs are high and the lows are low, but I wouldn't trade it for the world.

Sidney, Brie, Mitchell, Luke, Ivy
My Aunt Katie flew in from Japan to help my mom help my sister Amy and me. I haven't seen her in awhile, but it felt like yesterday. I can't explain how wonderful she is, but she makes you feel happy in your soul.

Aunt Katie & Babies

We loaded up the babies in the monster stroller this weekend. We did get lots of stares and people stopping us. I always laugh when people ask if they all came from me. Of course they did!!! Where else would they come from and why would I be pushing them around the neighborhood?!?

Silly Me...

Last Thing... We took the babies to get their Christmas pictures made this weekend. Oh, the drama! Now, I have been told that I have good babies. I didn't always believe it, but during our photo shoot I saw why people say that. I think someone swapped my good babies with the fussiest babies on the planet! How is it that babies know when you are on the phone, in the bathroom or at the photographers???

Friday, November 14, 2008

Rice Cereal

Per doctors orders, we started rice cereal this week... Hilarious!! Most of the babies just tongue it around... Briellen HATES it and Sidney eats the most. It's a lot of work, but it makes me happy to know that we are getting closer to them being able to feed themselves! (I know its a tiny step, but I celebrate each one!)






Monday, November 10, 2008

Our New Niece!!

Brynne Elizabeth was born a week ago!! She was 4 pounds 3 ounces. She was born at 34 weeks and is doing awesome. Hopefully only one more week to go in the NICU. Luckily I was able to be at the hospital when she was born... They brought her by the waiting room on the way to the NICU, so we got to see her for a few minutes. She is SO adorable! I can't wait to hold her.

Amy & Damon
Before Delivery

Auntie Elle & Brynne

Brynne Elizabeth!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Holy Cow....

.... it's HUGE!!! Can you believe this is my stroller?!?!?!?!

Stephen was telling me that there is a certain way you have to load the stroller so it won't tip over... kinda like if you hang a too heavy purse on the back of an empty chair. I know that I will probably get it wrong once or twice and the babies will be on a roller coaster ride.

In case you are wondering how you transport it... a trailer hitch.

Good times are ahead at the Howell house!!! :)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Happy Halloween

Babies went to the doctor this week for their four month shots... not too much fun, but here is what they weighed:

Mitchell 11 lbs 4 oz
Ivy & Luke 10 lbs 10 oz
Sidney 9 lbs 5 oz
Brie 8 lbs 11 oz

The babies had "I love Mummy" shirts and Boo PJs for Halloween. Hopefully, next year I'll have the energy for costumes. (Thanks for the PJ's, Rachelle!) Its funny how having them wear the same outfits makes it seems like there is more babies.

Ivy, Luke, Sidney, Brie, Mitchell (Grumps)

Brie, Luke, Ivy, Mitchell, Sidney
(Starting Top Going Clockwise)

Ivy, Mitchell, Briellen, Sidney, Luke

Amy was still in the hospital on bedrest, so I went to be with her. I dug in my bag of dress up stuff for some hospital friendly costumes. Amy had severe pre-eclampsia, so she was SWOLLEN... I always tell her, "who swallowed my Amy?" She had her baby this morning!!! I will post pictures soon.

Aim & Elle

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Okay... So I know most of you think that the reason that I don't blog frequently is because I have quintuplets, but I have to admit that the real reason is because I have a new Apple computer that I don't know how to use! I am determined to conquer it, so I should be posting more frequently now.

I had lots of fun help over the past month... Stephen's grandma stayed with us for a week. Then my girlfriends from college came in for the weekend. They let me and Stephen get away for the afternoon for our first date since we left for Phoenix (Margaritas @ Lupe Tortilla)... My cousin Jenny and her daughter Lynnea came in for a week and Stephen and I got to go on our second date (Sushi!)...

My sister Amy is on bed rest in the hospital awaiting the arrival of her baby girl, Brynne. I have been able to go every Thursday to visit her thanks to the awesome help that I have! It looks like she is going to have her baby sometime this week. (33 weeks.) Only preemies in our family.

The babies are now four months old and life is getting a titch easier everyday... We are able to feed the babies two at a time, (#5 can be a little tricky,) we go for walks in the pretty weather... The babies smile, talk, and play... They are spending much more time awake (so are Stephen and I!) They are starting to sleep longer at night, so hopefully a full nights sleep is around the corner (or is that just wishful thinking.)

Here are some pics from over the past month...
Me & Babies

Bumbos From Miss Kim & Ralfi

College Girlfriends

Briellen, Ivy, Luke, Mitchell, Sidney

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Surviving Ike

A little late notice, but we survived Ike. The power went out at midnight the night of the hurricane and we were fine until it started getting hot the next day. The babies slept through everything and only started getting fussy when it got hot. I don't know if they were fussy because they were hot or if it was because I was fussy and fussiness is contagious. I do not like being hot and I do not like not being able to flush a toilet! Add to that no help because everyone was trapped and I knew that we had to escape. Luckily, our family friends, the Davisons, took us in.

Now it is no small feat to pack up and travel with five babies and it takes big hearts to open a home to the chaos and sheer amount of stuff that goes along with quintuplets. Stella, Rick, Harper and Stuart not only let us stay with them, they helped us with every feeding, they called in recruits for night shifts, let us sleep in the Master bed room, babysat while Stephen and I went for a walk or sat in the hot tub and let me take a nap every day. (p.s. Harper and Stuart are in High School, so it melted my heart to see them want to love on my babies! ) It was almost a mini vacation. They are building a guest house at their home and if it were complete, Stephen and I would have moved in indefinitely... (Probably the first time they are thankful for the slow construction... :) )
Rick, Stuart, Stella & Harper
Stu & God Cousins

Harper & B/F/F Holly

The Babies Pallet for Hurricane Week

Our church is in Katy, so we were also close to TONS of additional help! I think a move to Katy might be in our future.

I had my first outing without the babies today... I stopped by the GE sales office to see my co-workers and then went to have an al fresco lunch with my girlfriends. I had a really good day because I really missed seeing my work friends and then LOVED seeing my girls. The only glitch in the day came when I was waiting for the valet. I waited and waited and waited... I thought that they didn't want to pull the van in front of their restaurant, but turns out they lost my keys. Long story short, Amy took me home and Dana found my keys stuck to her key chain from the valet. My helpers for the day were pros and all babies got fed despite my not being there, although the panic I felt is something that I don't want to feel again!

Funny thing... At lunch one pregnant girlfriend had a question for the "moms" at the table... I automatically turned and looked at the other girls not realizing that she had included me in her question. Ha!

Baby Update: They are growing like weeds! Their little personalities are coming out... Luke is so serious, Mitchell is laid back, Ivy is high maintenance and is starting to show a temper, Sidney is our Diva and Briellen our little bitty princess. They are all really sweet and good babies.

Last week weights (13 weeks old)
Mitchell - 8 lbs. 4 oz
Ivy - 7 lbs. 11 oz
Luke - 7 lbs. 4 oz.
Sidney - 7 lbs.
Briellen 6 lbs. 4 oz.

They are all looking like they have reddish hair... Are we going to be the Weasleys?






Wednesday, September 10, 2008


So, I am the biggest procrastinator on this planet... With five babies, there are certain things you absolutely can not procrastinate on, like mixing formula, making bottles, feeding babies, etc... So when there is something that can wait, I jump on the opportunity. As you can see from Sidney, I thought that trimming nails could wait. Apparently, it can not! And let me tell you that the girls do not like mani/pedi's as much as I do.

Sidney Scratches

When you see all of the adorable pictures of multiple babies, I do NOT know how they do it... I have tried a million times to get a picture with all five looking like their cute selves, but try as I might someone is always cranky or squinting or poking someone else or spitting up or whatever. Time to call the professionals!!!

Sidney, Luke, Ivy, Mitchell, Briellen
I still can't believe that I have five!! My girlfriend Dana, my sister Amy and I were taking care of the babies one Saturday... And it felt like we were babysitting. We were like, "Where are the adults??"

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


We have been home a week and things have been CRAZY! Luke got out of the hospital on a Thursday; Briellen and Ivy got out of the hospital on a Saturday and we were back in Houston on Tuesday. Briellen and Ivy's get out of jail cards came in the form of at-home apnea monitors. They've given us major peace of mind and we've had no true alarms nor any false alarms since we've been home! Two months of no alarms and they'll be off of them.

The plane ride home was an experience. The babies didn't cry (whew!) and the people on the plane were kind; one passenger even wrote us a sweet poem! Getting checked in and through security was a titch stressful, but with six adults we made it relatively pain free (my mom, Stephen's mom, Margaret, and Damon helped me & Stephen). They joked that they should have slipped me a Valium and I completely disagreed until I realized I didn't take a single picture!!

I have spent the past week in survival mode, with little sleep; exactly what the coming weeks will bring, I'm sure! Thank goodness for all the people that come and help me. Feeding times are a frenzy -- I compare the babies to pirhanas with blood in the water.

I've been trying to establish a routine, because I realized the babies had gone a week without a bath -- poor things!!!! (I guess because I hadn't bathed in a week either!) My new perfume is eau de Neosure (super stinky formula!); not one I recommend for my girlfriends!! I have had a couple of meltdowns, but overall, am so happy with my babies and being home.

Luke, Sidney, Briellen, Mitchell, Ivy
Luke Coming Home
Briellen Coming Home
Ivy Coming Home Again

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Mitchell Home & Ivy Back

So, we had a bit of drama this week with Ms. Ivy. She decided to stop breathing Thursday morning. And no amount of coaxing or stimulation would make her start again. I ended up having to do CPR -- the one thing that every mother tells herself that she'll never have to do. She started breathing again pretty quickly, but it seemed like an ETERNITY for me and my mom. The paramedics got here fast and they were wonderful. Even though Ivy was still recovering she flirted with the 5 cute men that were in the house. We had to fly in a helicopter back to the hospital and were blessed that the NICU at Good Sam let us come back. (A lot of times, once a baby is discharged from the NICU, they aren't allowed back.) Ivy is doing okay now... they think that it was reflux related and are running tests to verify. It is sad not having her here, but she is where she needs to be to get better. I won't go into what a wreck I am, but bottom line is: TAKE CPR! I am afraid that if I hadn't, Ivy wouldn't be here with us today.

Ivy & Elle
On a happier note, we got to take Mitchell-Moo home with us on Sunday. It feels so good to be able to pick him up and play with him anytime I want. He is so laid back and such a sweet boy. It's strange, but it felt weird having only one baby here. Two feels more normal, but I won't feel all the way "normal" until they are all here. Who would have thought that I wouldn't feel "normal" until I had FIVE babies in my house. Crazy, huh?

Stephen's mom is staying the week with us as the babies are coming home. So 3 people taking care of 2 babies is allowing me to get some much needed rest.

Ready to Go

Monday, August 4, 2008

Sidney & Ivy Home!!!

Wow!!! What a roller coaster ride the last two weeks have been... Quick recap - Mitchell and Briellen started having breathing problems. We thought that we were going to have to do surgery to fix their PDA's. The awesome neonatalogists decided to try a medicine to close them instead of surgery despite their "old" age. The medicine WORKED! No more PDA's! Briellen continued to have breathing issues and the doctors determined that it was her anemia causing it. We did a blood transfusion and she has been doing great. The biggest news is that Sidney and Ivy came home on Saturday! Even though the truly sleepless nights have begun, we are one step closer to coming home to Texas.

Tiny Ivy & Sidney Ready for Ride Home

Getting Ready To Go Home

Hanging Out At Home

The Farleys came to visit last weekend... Look at how big Aiden is!! I hadn't see him since April and he is such a little boy now!