Monday, February 21, 2011

Home Sweet Home!

We've been home now for a day and a half and loving it! The 24-hour journey home was amazingly smooth with our bassinet seats (they were so cute snuggled up in those) and the incredible care from the KLM/Air France crews on each leg - Adam and Emily were a big hit!!! Then, when we hit the Amsterdam airport (Schipol) for our 7 hour layover, we stayed in the most amazing club-like baby lounge which was incredibly comfortable and total lifesaver!

When we arrived in DC and exited customs, Daddy Bill fell in love at first sight and immediately held out his arms for Adam. Bill's Mom (Mamaw) took Emily as Bill's Dad (Papaw) looked on and the water works began. The babes have now settled into their new creature comforts (they look so tiny in those seemingly "massive" cribs!) and they love their new formula. Since then, Bill has had one or the other in his arms the entire time except for crib-time. He's quickly become an expert in bottle-making and diaper changing though we're both still perplexed with burping ...it's just so hard to hear them burp or know exactly when they still need to. The pups Dewey and Jaxx have done very well with Jaxx being pretty indifferent to it all (he's the alpha and can't be bothered in his mind) while Dewey is quite interested always wanting to watch every move and be right up next to them. We think all is going to work out fine with them.    

All in all, it's just so nice to finally be here and soak in every moment with nothing to do but care for them, watch every amazing move and hear every cute little squeak, giggle and grunt ;-) My mom (Cappy) comes in tomorrow night and she can't stand the wait! We look forward to having her here for the next month along my Dad (Pop) who'll arrive a little later.

Here are some pics of the journey home and the first few days (in that order).

















      

   

Friday, February 18, 2011

Outta Here!!!

Believe it or not, after only eight full days in India for baby pick-up, we are outta here! I think this is a new record which we were VERY happy to set :-) We did have a minor ordeal today that could have been major without the help of our trusted Radhika and Kuldeep. In the end, we got our exit visas and met the most charming Norwegians who were also here for baby pick-up. We had them back to our hotel for wine and cheese (and cookies for their six year old son Oliver) as their hotel was too far to go to and come back to complete the FRRO paperwork (yes, we had to leave and return due to our little ordeal - more about that later!). They were delightful, we were in good company and all turned out well in the end.

We've reserved our bulkhead seats with the baby bassinettes (they attach to the bulkhead in front of us) which will make our 24-hour journey with the two babes much more comfortable for them and us! Jena is now packing the diaper bag and our driver arrives in 30 minutes. We are over the moon with excitement that all is over here and we can now get our beautiful little babies (and us) home to their other Daddy Bill, Mamaw and Papaw and uncles Jimmy and Marty and very soon their other G-parents Cappy and Pop who will be up from Florida to meet grand babies 13 & 14 this week!!!

Well, I'd better go swaddle the little ones, say goodbye to our good Ausie friends Peter and Brad (and their three beautiful little bubs) from across the hall  and go meet our ride. I'll post our return in a couple of days with some new pics, so until then...  

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Sorry No Posts!

Hi all!
Sorry no posts, but our wi-fi was taken down for nearly two days for a security protocol upgrade and it's only just now back up (kinda!). I just wrote about six detailed paragraphs catching you up on the past three days and it rebooted on me and I lost it all :(  So now I'm gonna brief before I lose you again and just say that Adam and Emily are official US Citizens and passport holders! We've also now passed our file through the Ministry of Home Affairs which is the first Indian Government step to getting our exit visas to head home(not a fun experience, but done!).

Now, with the help of a "facilitation fee" our file will be expedited through the Foreign Registration Office tomorrow and we will be issued those visas by early afternoon! We are told the only thing that can stop this is if the special printers are down. Let's hope not, because Jena and I just added the babies to our tickets and changed them to depart very late tomorrow night 1150pm. This will put us home in DC on Saturday and mean that we only spent 11 days in India (remarkable!) ...we could not be more excited.

Bill's mom (Mamaw) will meet us at the airport and my mom (Cappy) will join us in DC the following Tuesday> Wednesday, the babies have their first pediatrician appointment (American pediatrician anyway).

So this is the latest! And now for the good stuff....














Sunday, February 13, 2011

Babies Are With Us!

A lot has happened in the past two days!

First of all, babies are doing FANTASTIC! We could not ask for better news than we've been getting over the past several days about our awesome little babes. And, there have been a number of very important firsts: yesterday, the babies began feeding with regular bottles and they love it. They are eating so well with Adam being pretty darn veracious and Emily ...well, let's just say she's eating like a little lady. She definitely takes her time and when she's done SHE IS DONE! But, they are each eating their required daily amount or more.

Speaking of feeding, it was also Daddy's first time changing diapers yesterday! It wasn't bad at all and was actually quite sweet to be the one responsible for taking care of your little ones in such an intimate way ....to clean them and make sure they feel clean and good again. It's so awesome! And equally awesome is seeing how much poop they make; I don't know, it's like a measure of succcess or something!!!

Also yesterday, they tasted their very first pacifiers. They could not get enough of them (thank you Geremy and Carrie for the big bag of hospital ones you gave us - they're a hit!). I was worried they'd be too big, but they took to them like champs although I can't help be reminded of Maggie Simpson in some of the shots - Daoooh! ;-)

While yesterday was great, today was awsome! The babies were discharged and we brought them back to the hotel. Jena and I made the best little cribs out of (ready for this???) a suitcase!!! They are so tiny and still imobile, that with just a few blankets and some baby decor, we have great instant cribs! We've had them "home" for a full twelve hours now and all is well. I just can't get enough of them now: watching every single move they make; letting them grasp my finger and holding on tightly; each one melting into my arms (they LOVE to be held!) throughout the day; having them sleep on my chest; and I just love getting real close and breathing in their little sweet angel breath ...it's all just so wonderful! Maybe I'm crazy, but they are cooing (in very tiny voices) and smiling already too, I'm in love!

Well, it's feeding time again (every three hours), so I must go. Please enjoy the following photos from the past couple of days and a couple of videos (FYI: Adam is in stripes or green-monkey blanket and Emily is in saffron-yellow or pink blankets).

















video
video

Friday, February 11, 2011

ATTEMPTING A VIDEO!

Here's a video short of Adam and Emily direct from Balliwood! ...okay not really, they're from New Delhi :-)


video

video

The Big Move!

Today was an exciting day as we were able to move the babies from their hospital (Delhi Newborn Centre) an hour across town to Phoenix Hospital (where they were born) about a block away from our hotel. We can now pop in and play with them any time :-)) 

Moving them was a very delicate operation involving Jena, me and the driver. We dressed them in their very first onesies which were tiny preemie size (yet still too big - these babies are TINY!) and then swaddled them in their blankies. We brought pillows with us in the car mainly to rest our arms in as we needed to hold them snugly during the chaotic hour drive from Delhi to New Delhi. We arrived safely with our precious little cargo and they are now just down the street from us.

Today, Emily was wide awake and moving all about while Adam was sleeping most of the time. So, we have some much better pictures of her and some other cute ones of Adam curled up on his belly like a little bean! Later, we have them in their first clothes ever and then bundled up in blankets like little cacoons. They are both gaining weight every day and eating so well that the doctors have said there is no need to weigh them daily after they are discharged. This has all been such great news and been so very easy for them and for us, and we feel very fortunate to have all these wonderful caring and talented doctors and staff taking such good care of them (and us!).

In other news, we received our now apostled birth certificates today, and as we are certain the babies will be discharged to us on Sunday, have made our appointment at the embassy on Tuesday to affirm their citizenship and apply for their passports. Nancy Hamilton (embassy America Citizen Services) has been great and assured us we will get the passports that very same day. This means the following day will begin the Indian government process of getting our visas and getting home! If all goes well (meaning no inquiry), we could be on a flight as soon as Saturday/Sunday Feb 19/20. This would mean we were only here for ten days ...a new record! But, anything can happen in the administration of this process so we'll hope, but remain flexible.

Finally, last evening we were able to set up our video skype calling with many family members (still continuing) and can now call and see eachother for free!!! Most importantly, they can all see the babies in real time when we get them back here. Since my laptop and/or ISP stops me from posting videos on my blog, I was still able to put my iPhone screen up to the laptop camera and play it for my parents - they could see and hear the video of the babies perfectly - very exciting!

It's now time for some wine and dinner, and then to organize our documents before we head out tomorrow and make about three trees worth of copies for our visa package!!!

Goodnight to all!

Emily's pics are first then Adam:










  

Thursday, February 10, 2011

We Made It!

We made it in today at 1am after 18 hours of travel and have been on the go ever since - no sleep for Jena or me in over 50 hours aside from an uncomfortable catnap here and there. But, how could we sleep when the first thing we were to do was head out to see the little ones :-)  This gave us our second, third and fourth winds for the day ...it was amazing!

It was unbelievable to see our beautiful little babies for the very first time. But, I was not at all prepared for how tiny they would be ...it was hard to even believe they were real at first as they looked like little toy dolls; just so so so tiny! When we came in, Emily was sound asleep (she is the big sleeper of the two) and Adam was wide awake (he being the rambunctious one!). So, they asked if I wanted to hold Adam and I of course said yes, but was a little scared as he just seems so fragile. As the nurse showed me how to pick him up and cradle his tiny little head, she handed him to me and he just sunk into my arms and calmed down immediately then fell asleep in like two minutes. It was so incredibly sweet and hard to describe. During all of this Jena was tickling Emily and trying to gently wake her (no luck of course!)  

After about 30 mins of being mesmerized at these little lives, feeding time was upon us. So, it was just-in-time training time for Jena and Andy which was quite a neat experience. I tried to upload a video of this "event" but my poor little mediocre laptop can't handle it. So, I've posted a lot of pics of Adam and one (the last) of Emily as all of hers looked the same because she seriously REFUSED to wake up or stay up. I hope to have more of her tomorrow if she decides to play a little with us - hope you enjoy :-) 

As far as our paperwork provcess here, Both Adam and Emily have begun to gain weight and are now feeding via syringe instead of tube (yeahhhh!) so everything with them has been ahead of schedule. This means they only have about 48 more hours in the hospital and then they can come back with us to the apartment. And this means we're that much closer to heading home!!! Speaking of which, we did meet with our attorney today and thanks to some pre-planning from the home before we arrived, we already have their birth certificates! So, all is going extremely well with trying to get us back home sooner than expected. 

I am so tired now I can barely keep typing! So I've ordered room service (which has just arrived), and Jena has cracked open a bottle of wine (which I'm sure she'll finish!) and so I'll let all of you enjoy this video which really says it all.

Love to all
Andy