Whack a Mole

Whac-A-Mole arcade redemption game with dogs

Whac-A-Mole arcade redemption game with dogs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Despite our valiant efforts, the babies suffered their first cold this week.  Our visitors will be relieved to know it came from none other than Papa Bear himself.  That means Mama Bear’s wrath was directed towards him.   It started when George came home Friday night with a burning throat that quickly progressed into nasal congestion. By Monday night, Harper was fussier than usual and ate much less than usual.  Tuesday morning, his eyes were glassy and he was terribly congested.  Being a dutiful first time Mommy, I looked through all of my books to see what to do.  I was on track using saline with nasal suctioning, cool mist humidifier, sleeping upright, and cuddles.  The books all noted that I should go to the pediatrician for a first time cold to rule out anything else (e.g. RSV).  Knowing that we have four preemies, the letters R, S, and V together are very scary.  I was flying solo on Tuesday and wasn’t sure how to manage taking one baby to the pediatrician with three others in tow so I called our “Johnny on the Spot” aka Father in Law aka Grandaddy.  I probably called with a tinge of distress hoping he could help manage the four at the doctor’s office if needed.  Without hesitation, he said, “I’m coming over!”.

Meanwhile, I called the pediatrician and the nurse assured me that I was doing everything I should.  Thankfully, there was no reason to take Harper in for an appointment unless there was fever or dehydration.  Even without having to go to the doctor, I still had one sick baby and three others to contend with.  Remember that arcade game where moles pop up from a box and you whack them down with a mallet?  Just as you take care of one, three more pop up in the first one’s place.  That was Tuesday for me, a game of Whack a Mole.  I was doing my best to prevent cold pandemic with quads by sterilizing bottles, washing hands over and over, disinfecting all surfaces, and separating all baby stuff.  I would get finished feeding the fourth baby as the first began refluxing.  Once I finished taking care of reflux, another one would be wailing of a stinky diaper.  All the while, Harper still fussed of total discomfort.  Amen for Grandaddy!  While he doesn’t generally do diapers or spit ups, it was nice having him there to help console fussy babies and manage the feeding frenzies.   He was so sweet that he stayed with us until George came home late in the evening even though I told him he didn’t have to stay.  By the end of the day I’m pretty sure his batteries were totally drained.  Keeping up with four babies one of which is sick is not for the faint of heart.

You may recall…I worked hard to keep the cold pandemic at bay?  You probably predicted, those efforts were absolutely futile.  Each day this week another baby fell victim to the cold.  Harper then Mason, Rylin and finally Sydney.  As of now, we have four stuffy nosed babies with little appetite and a predisposition to reflux.  I probably shall run, I think I need to whack a mole!

I decided I needed to snuggle all four at once.

My idea worked!  Here they are from my point of view.

Grandaddy consoling a fussy Rylin. Notice there are several Rock ‘n’ Plays? We now have four because everyone needs to sleep upright with all the mucus and reflux we have going on.

Here is my first attempt with bottle propping to feed all at once using props from a triplet Grandpa. Epic fail. The props work like a bib so if a burp or reflux is coming on it’s bad news bears!

Attempt #2 at bottle propping just using towels. This worked for a moment, but we didn’t have much stability. We also tried bottle buddies suggested by another quad mama, but didn’t have much luck yet. We may try again when the babies are tad bigger.

Here’s what it looks like when everyone is wearing their angry eyes.

In honor of the Red River Rivalry we wore our Texas socks for the Texas/ OU game. Too bad our lucky socks didn’t help Texas a bit.

12 thoughts on “Whack a Mole

  1. Try laying them on their side to feed. I have twins and did this. It works great! Prop up their bottles with towels or burp clothes with the babies laying sideways on the boppy. It really works:). Your doing an amazing job!


    • I will try that next. The only problem is that our occupational therapist said they need to stop eating side laying. I suppose what she doesn’t know won’t hurt…I just gotta do what works for four sometimes. 😉


  2. I am so sorry that you are dealing with the nasty cold bug. Stuffy noses are no fun. You are doing everything I would do. The only thing I would may be add but I would have to check at what age you can start is rubbing vapor rub on the soles of their feet. Don’t ask me why it works but it does. I have also learned that it is easier once one kid gets sick to give them all the same paci or something so they all get sick at the same time to avoid the two week course of kid after kid getting sick. I would rather them all get sick at once so we can move on! Now mama bear will hopefully stay healthy!!


    • Hmmm, I will have to check on the vapor rub thing, sounds like a good idea. I did give them vapor baths, but don’t know that it helped. You are probably right about just sharing the germs right away. It will always be pandemic anyways, especially if it warrants a dr visit.


  3. Oh, I hate that you’re going through this. Sean got his first cold at around this age and is so sad since they can’t take anything and everyone just has to suffer through it. Can’t imagine going through it times 4. Great thing about Dr. Knapp though, no unnecessary office visits. I emailed and called so often and it saved me time, effort and money. Love him! Hope everyone gets well soon.


  4. Oh Amber, you poor mama bear!!! I hope the kids are doing better and that you didn’t get sick. I am not looking forward to the day all of mine get sick, either. I can totally relate to the whack a mole. So true! And propping will get easier, I hope, when they are a little more mature. When I try to do it, it is crazy busy and the girls are way better than the boys. A little maturity is needed, I think!


    • I sure hope you can keep yours from getting colds or anything for that matter for a very long time! We already play whack a mole just by having quads and colds just make it a faster game. I think maturity is the key to bottle propping. I haven’t given up just yet. Also probably doesn’t help that they are sick!


  5. Hi! I’ve been following you for a while kind of silently but wanted to de-lurk to say I think you are AMAZING. We’ve been living with our twins now for 5 weeks and I cannot believe you make it work with four. Every time you post I am totally impressed, and have even implemented some of your strategies (and I tell people all about where I get ideas from haha). When both my babies are crying I basically want to melt down, it feels like the whole house is filled with cries. And that’s just in stereo- not a chorus! Good luck and I hope you and your babies feel better soon. Lots of love!


    • Aww, thanks Robin! I am so happy you’re following our journey, and better yet getting ideas. MoMs are the best source of advice because we all walk in the same shoes.
      It isn’t always easy, but I always remember two things 1. This was His plan for us and He never gives us more than we can handle with Him 2. We are beyond blessed. Just a year ago we lost our first baby and wondered if we would ever have a baby to hold. We never imagined four healthy babies. Hang in there, mama and treasure the moments while the twins are tiny.


  6. The whack-a-mole image is one that I’ve thought of myself. That, or spinning plates. 😉 I did the exact same thing when our first got a cold and tried to keep everything separate and of course all of them got it. Now I just don’t even try, but there have been some times when only one gets sick and the others somehow don’t! Oh, and this is the bottle propper we used. I can’t remember when we finally started using it though since we had some reflux issues at the beginning too. Propping does make life so much more do-able, especially when you’re home alone!



    • So glad you relate! A wise quad mom told me to just let them share stuff and get the pandemic over with. I will try propping again and may try your props too. I do feel a tinge of guilt trying to prop since feeding is for “bonding” they say.


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