The Michaels' Quads

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Thursday, January 31, 2008

January 31, 2008

Hope everyone is enjoying the wonderful winter weather. Tiff & I are enjoying the snow from the 10th floor of Carle Hospital. Great day to be indoors and covered up with blankets! This fits right into Tiff's day:)

Everything here is going wonderful. Tiff has been feeling great and (knock on wood) has had minimal complications over the last week. Yesterday Tiff had a sonogram and the babies are already working on their breathing, which is great news! On a scale from 1-8, 8 being the healthiest, all babies are measuring an "8" in terms of practicing breathing, sac fluid, heartbeats, and movement. We are both anxious for tomorrow to see how Tiff's cervix looks. Last cervix sono, on Monday, showed the cervix had actually grown 1cm in length. Any growth in length is a blessing! Thank you for your prayers for Tiff's cervix. Brad Boll, a friend of mine at work, cracked me up when he said he was having a difficult time explaining to his wife that he was praying for another womans cervix:) Needless to say, those prayers are being answered!

Next Monday (2/4) brings our growth sonogram. This sono only comes every other Monday. We are praying our little peanut (baby D) has continued to grow with her siblings. We are confident she is just going to be a little smaller than the rest and have to remember that each baby will have it's own unique characteristics. These are not identical quads so could be quite different in their appearance.

Next Tuesday we will celebrate the babies 26th week birthday!! Lori, one of our nurses, brought in a cake for the 24th week b-day and 4 baby bottles (3 pink caps and 1 blue cap) filled with candy for the 25th week b-day. We can't say enough about the support the staff has given us since we've been here.

Here's a picture of me putting together our last crib. About two hours later Tiff went into preterm labor. Just in the knick of time;)

Oh, as for the pole to the left, those who voted "Tiff didn't let Jon finish" were correct. A special "thanks" to those who voted I was able to finish in two minutes!

Thanks to everyone who has visited, been praying, sending cards, texting, calling and sending e-mails. They mean the world to Tiff and I!! We'll continue to keep you posted!

Saturday, January 26, 2008


What a busy day! Tiff had a good day health wise. A few minor contractions this afternoon, but otherwise quiet. Last night she pretty much slept all through the night.
Today was a great day visitor wise! Judy and Mark Hutti, Tiff's family and my family came up for a "mini" baby shower. The shower was originally planned for Mattoon, but since we are here now, the shower was brought to Champaign. We were blessed with many nice things!!
A little later in the evening Matt Ashmore stopped by for a surprise visit. Tiff was elated to see him! Matt - I apologize for leaving you in the room with 6 women while we left and ate pizza. You probably got more than you bargained for:)
Kori Gettel and my sister Kassie surprised us today with the amazing news of the "baby shower" they are putting on for us next Saturday at Entourage! Absolutely amazing! We can't believe all the hard work everyone put in to this shower to make this work. It just blows us away people want to do this just for our family. Everyday we are reminded we're so blessed with amazing family and friends. I look forward to attending for Tiff and I, but know there will be a definite void without my better half being there:( Thank you Kori and Kassie and all those that helped to organize this! Tiff is excited to get a full report/video next Sunday.
Yesterday our mailbox at home was filled with card, after card, after card for Tiff. Tiff's best friends from college, Shanna Combes and Jenny Hunt, organized a "ZTA gift card" shower. Tiff was absolutely ecstatic to read all the cards from her ZTA sisters. Tiff sends a big "THANKS" to everyone for their generosity!
Also, yesterday, Pete and Megan Martin came all the way from Indianapolis to see Tiff. Tiff spent a couple of hours visiting with them before they had to return home. It was really good to see both of them! Pete - Thanks for the Golf Magazine! I'm getting tired of reading Us and People Magazine!
I wanted to thank Amy Moser for coming to spend last Wednesday with Tiff. It was so good for Tiff to spend time with her and just hang out. Amy was such a great help!
Alright, another day and the babies are still cooking in Tiff's belly! We just take it day-by-day and continue to pray from our prayer list. God is so good!!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Hello All,

Tiff had some contractions this morning and later this afternoon so I worked from the lobby on our floor. Jan (Tiff's Mom) came up to keep Tiff company as well. To remedy the contractions nurses gave her a shot this afternoon that isn't near as strong as the Magnesium she was on when she was first admitted. Since the shot contractions have subsided. In the words of our nurse, Vanessa, Tiff is just going to be a "contractor". As long as they aren't big ones, we can live with that.
Tomorrow Tiff will have a sonogram so it will be exciting to see how much the babies have grown. I think we're even more intrigued by the size of Tiff's cervix. Continue to pray for the babies health and that Tiff's cervix lengthens.

I thought I would take a minute to talk about our accommodation's here at Carle. This portion of the hospital is one year old in February. We are blessed to have our own room, own bathroom (with shower), and nice flat screen T.V. Floors are all wood. They have rolled a bed in for me to sleep on as well:) The accommodation's are similar to a hotel room to be honest. All of this is a blessing considering we are considering this home for as long as possible. Security is pretty tight on our floor; nurses have to let you in and out. Food has been really good.

The nursing staff here is great. Everyone has been really helpful and personable. We are going to assume that they will be like family by the time we leave here. In my humble opinion you can start to see all the nurses rallying behind Tiff. It's Tiff's outgoing personality that is so infectious! Dr. Kehl came in around 7 p.m. this evening and is still encouraged by Tiff's progress. He keeps it simple - one day at a time, one week at a time, one month at a time:)

Tiff wants me to make sure I don't forget to thank everyone for their prayers, texts, e-mails, and phone calls. We love you all!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


It is now official, the babies are considered viable! This is something Tiff and I have felt from day 1, but medically speaking they are viable. Tiff didn't have the best night last night since contractions acted up a bit. They increased her level of medicine (Magnesium Sulfate) which, in her words, made her feel "drugged up". She was able to get some consistent shut eye after 8 a.m. this morning though.

We saw Dr. Kehl this morning. He has a positive outlook on things, which is good news for Tiff and I to hear. He would like to take her off the Magnesium and get her on something oral (I can't remember the name of the drug :). Depending on how her body reacts they'll determine if she needs get back on the Magnesium, but we plan on saying "bye-bye" to those drugs for a while! Dr. Kehl did prescribe her another steroid shot today which she had done about a half hour ago. The best prescription today though is TIFF GETS TO TAKE A SHOWER!!! She is so pumped.

They did a sonogram on the babies this morning and the heartbeats still look good. Her cervix has gone down in size from a 1.8 to a 1.6 cm. Please keep praying for her cervix to stay as long as possible!!
As I type this nurses are doing a monitor on all the babies heartbeats. It's so cool to hear four babies heart beats all at once! Words really can't describe it. They'll keep a monitor on each baby for 1/2 hour. It takes two nurses to find all the heart beats at the same time. Picture above: Here are two of our nurses, Marilyn (left) and Mindy (right) monitoring heart beats!
Alright, time for Tiff and I to eat some lunch. I'll say it everytime....Thank you so much for your prayers, e-mails, blogs, and texts. Tiff loves to read/hear them!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Great Night!!

Everything went really well last night. Tiff's contractions subsided and, at one point, were down to 2 contractions in one hour. Excellent! Tiff got plenty of sleep (even though she has to turn over once every hour) and is feeling good this morning. Since she's been awake contractions have been about 6 per hour. We met with our RN, Melissa, who was encouraged by Tiff's progress. Since she had such a good night they have taken her off the catheter and allowed her to start eating food! Before this morning Tiff hadn't eaten anything or been able to get up since Saturday.

Tomorrow will be the babies 24 week birthday!! Awesome! Dr's consider this a great milestone to achieve! To celebrate the occasion Tiff was injected with a steroid shot:) around 10 a.m. to help with the development of the babies lungs, etc. In the same visit Tiff had a sonogram. Babies heartbeats still look great. They have sufficient fluid in their sacs so far. The cervix is measuring 1.80 cm, which is a little lower than what we'd love to have, but stable from where it was yesterday. Please pray for Tiff's cervix to remain as long as possible!

Well, I realize this entry is short, but everything is going as well as possible. I can't tell you how great it has been for Tiff to receive the texts, voicemails, e-mails, and blog entries. She loves to hear/read them all!! God is good!

Tiff and Jon

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Just arrived at the hospital....

Hello Everyone!

12:00 p.m. blog: Well, last night Tiff's body just didn't feel right and after speaking with the nurse, Veronica, we headed out to Carle Clinic in Champaign. Upon arriving at the hospital we came to find that Tiff was having contractions on a pretty frequent basis. The doctor has put her on Magnesium Sulfate to help eliminate the contractions. The good news is the contractions are not near as frequent as they were last night. Bad news is the side effects are crummy for Tiff. She also is dealing with blood in her urine which they think can be attributed to a bladder infection. We will have to wait a couple of days for the cultures to come back. They are treating her with an antibiotic for this. To top all this off Tiff has to deal with a catheter, which, at first caused a great deal of discomfort. No food either for the time being.

I can't tell you how big of a fighter Tiff is. She is absolutely resilient to deal with such a tough situation. Going off little sleep and not feeling well she still stays so positive! We have yet to meet with Dr. Kehl, he will be in later today or tomorrow. At first glance it appears that we will be here in Champaign for the remainder of Tiff's pregnancy. We did have a sonogram this morning and all the babies are growing well and heart beats look great. God is sooo Good!! Our little peanut has put on just as much weight as the others, which we are really encouraged by. She is weighing 1lbs 2oz. On the flip side, our boy continues to put on the pounds. He is weighing in at an amazing 1 lbs 14 oz. The other two girls are right on target for their age, weighing around 1lbs 8 oz.

10:40 p.m. blog - What a difference a few hours can make. Tiff continues to look and feel better with each passing hour. Tiff's family arrived early afternoon which really lifted her spirits. The contractions are now 13 minutes apart. This is a great stride considering she was around 6 minutes earlier in the day. There is not as much blood in her urine and they have lowered her dosage of Magnesium Sulfate; both positive signs. She has slept a lot today which is perfect. Relaxing her uterus so it can expand is the number one priority. Keep the cervix long! For now we are just sitting and waiting for more details. Probably won't know much until we see Dr. Kehl in the morning since he didn't make it in today.

We have received a ton of "we're praying for you" phone calls today. God is definitely answering these prayers. Tiff and I thank you from the bottom of our hearts! We both feel so blessed to have the family and friends we do! I'll try to keep everyone up to date as we move forward.

God Bless,

Tiff and Jon

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

22 weeks

Today we had our 22 week doctors appointment. It went great!!! The babies look good, our little guy is huge. He is measuring 25 weeks and 1 1/2 lbs. Babies b and c are measuring right on target (1lb 3 ounces). We do have a little peanut. She is the one right under my right rib cage. The doctors are not worried because she has the same amount of blood flow and fluid as the other three. She is just going to be the smallest. Everything else looks really good, my cervix is over a 4 which is great!! I will start steroid shots next visit, which will be at 24 weeks. This is to help their lung development. Jon and I thank you for all of your prayers, they are definitely being answered!!!
Here I am at 22 weeks, measuring 34 weeks!

We were able to have some of our sonogram pictures in 3-D. Here is one of our little girls with her right hand under her chin. She is probably thinking "How can I get more room in here:)"

This is a picture of our little guy bearing it all!!!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

21 weeks.......

Hope everyone's holiday went well!! I'm back at home after spending a week with my parents in Mattoon. It was nice to get away from our house.
Here I am at 19 weeks. We just had our 20 week appointment last Friday and everything went really well. The babies continue to be healthy and growing as any 20 week old baby would. The doctor is happy with the progress thus far. In fact, things were so good I got to take one last trip to St. Louis for Pam's (my second Mom) 60th Birthday! Unfortunately Dr. Kehl is telling me this would be the last trip I can take and then I must stay close to home....but it's totally worth it!!! We go back to the doc. Wed. the 9th. We will have another sono to check the babies measurements. I love seeing them. They are always so active ( I wonder where they get that from:) )
I was 21 weeks as of yesterday. I am still feeling great!!!