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Ken Fitzgerald
03-18-2010, 8:55 AM
I am currently in Houston.

As a former sailor I have always been a sucker for good looking women, children and dogs.

I have rocked my share of babies....3 kids....7 grandkids....4 great-grandkids......

I was at the hospital when my great-granddaughter Riley was born....

But I had never seen a premie...or premies in the case of my twin granddaughters I'm becoming acquainted with at the moment. 4 weeks premature......I listened to the concern over phone of our youngest son.....a first time Dad...twins...both went jaundiced...extremely high billirubin levels. For his wife's sake he didn't mention it but I researched it.....possible permanent brain damage if the condition lingers too long.....

Both babies have lost weight ....now just above 4 lbs........

So we arrived in Houston on Sunday..picked up at the airport by our youngest son. He's on cloud nine......jaundiced conditions gone from the twins.

This weeks doctor's report...both babies gaining weight....things look good.

Last night the LOML took over feeding duties for the night so his wife could get a good nights sleep and he could study all night for an exam today.

I awoke and rocked one of the twins back to sleep after their 3:30 a.m. feeding this morning....Haiden....nicked named by me as "Half-pint".....as I rocked her I realized.....

Somethings in life are important....Most aren't....

Half-pint and Little Bit are......SS isn't.

Life is good!

Tony De Masi
03-18-2010, 9:00 AM
As the grandfather of a 6 week premature boy......BRAVO!!

Well said Ken.

Tony

Glenn Clabo
03-18-2010, 9:17 AM
I knew it...you are actually an old softy. And I like it...

Enjoy every moment...

Jim O'Dell
03-18-2010, 9:34 AM
Good news Ken! Sorry, I don't have any coupons to get you out of diaper duty though. :D Tell Mom and Dad we're thinking of and praying for them. Jim.

Rod Sheridan
03-18-2010, 9:50 AM
Ken, great news, enjoy them while they're little.

They may grow up and start a SS thread:D (Sorry, couldn't resist).

Have fun with family, you're certainly correct about what's important in life.

Best wishes to everyone, Rod.

Mitchell Andrus
03-18-2010, 9:59 AM
I'm going to send you a charming kid's bedtime story book.

"Kenny and the Sawstop threads that just never stop despite the fact that everything that could possibly be said about the matter has been but people just won't let it go, like that stupid Ryobi lawsuit thread that keeps popping up."

The illustrations are charming.
.

Horton Brasses
03-18-2010, 10:02 AM
Well said Ken. I don't know a darn thing about SS. But I try to live by this:

Three parts of life:

1. Family
2. Work
3. Self

Focus on those three things, in that order, and the rest tends to take care of itself. Now to go back to #2.

Belinda Williamson
03-18-2010, 10:23 AM
Ken, I'm so glad Half Pint and Little Bit have made the turn. I know how concerned you were when they were early. Life is good. Just keep rockin' . . . doesn't mean exactly what it used to, does it? :)

Jason Roehl
03-18-2010, 10:42 AM
Ken, I'm glad to hear they're on the upswing--I can relate.

All 3 of our kids were 5-6 weeks early and spend about a week each in the NICU. With the first, both my wife and I were at the hospital almost 24-7. They removed the longest couches in the waiting room after a few days. :D

By the time our 3rd was born, it was old hat to us. I would take the kids home at night, and momma would go home to rest up for a few hours during the day.

All of them experienced high bilirubin levels, but they happy and healthy now that they are 12, 10 and 8 years old. The jury is still out on smart (though they do act a lot like me and people always told me I was smart). A premature birth, while not great, is not the cause for concern it once was, thanks to good doctors, nurses and medical research.

Congrats on the great-grandbaby!

Lee Schierer
03-18-2010, 11:41 AM
Ken, you know the rules here....no photos it never happened.:D

Congrats from a X4 Grandpa.

Note: Diapers are something that Mom and Dad get to take care of unless Grandpa volunteered to watch the kids.....

wells conklin
03-18-2010, 12:04 PM
Congatulations Ken and Family and right-on RE: What is really important

Ken Fitzgerald
03-18-2010, 12:24 PM
Ken, I'm so glad Half Pint and Little Bit have made the turn. I know how concerned you were when they were early. Life is good. Just keep rockin' . . . doesn't mean exactly what it used to, does it? :)

It still means what it always did Belinda....It's always been about what I was able to do....:rolleyes:


Thanks everyone!

Alan Bienlein
03-18-2010, 1:27 PM
Congratulations Ken. Glad to hear everything is okay with your new grandaugthers! Our son was born 9 wks early. I was worried until they brought him in for us to see before he was transfered to another hospital. I reached for his little hand and when he gripped my finger I new then that everything was going to be ok. That was 25 yrs ago.

Brent Ring
03-18-2010, 1:56 PM
That is so great to hear! Glad everyone is doing well. Somethings just dont matter quite as much as others, do they?

Paul Ryan
03-18-2010, 5:14 PM
Thats great to hear Ken, As a recent father for the 2nd time. I feel for your whole family. During the delivery of my daughter 4 months ago we got a real scare as well. All turned out well though. I will keep my fingers crossed hopefully it is all smooth sailing from here.

Joe Pelonio
03-18-2010, 5:51 PM
That sure brings back memories, our daughter (middle child) was born 10 weeks premature at 2lbs. She turns 25 in April - even in the 80's the Neonatal ICU did amazing things and by now are probably even better equipped. It sounds like they recovered from their early arrival quickly,
that's great!

Randal Stevenson
03-18-2010, 6:12 PM
Tools, the house/home, cars, etc. None of it is. It is what you do with it, for who, and why, is what is important. Enjoy them, because soon, they will be asking you to use the shop.:)

Ken Fitzgerald
03-18-2010, 6:39 PM
Thanks everyone for the well wishes.


Belinda......

This afernoon.....Little Bit got her first.....drum roll please......Grandpa diaper change.........


No pictures but Sharon did get a video. I'll guarrantee it won't be on youtube....:eek::D

Kent A Bathurst
03-18-2010, 7:02 PM
"Not another SS thread...... "

Not a problem - those are easily come by. Not so with great-grandchildren.

Congratulations.

Tom Hamilton
03-18-2010, 8:17 PM
Ken, congrats on another pair of grandchildren and thanksgivings for their growth.

Enjoy your grandparenting time...it is God's reward for raising our children.

Blessings,

Tom, now in Georgia, but formerly just across the golf course from the babies house.

Jim Rimmer
03-18-2010, 8:24 PM
It is amazing how our kids, grandkids, great-grands can put everything in perspective. What was important suddenly becomes not so important when kids are concerned. Our twin grandkids were not premature but had a rough birth and spent a while in NICU. Son (their Dad) was on a ship in the Persian Gulf and was just beside himself. LOML spent a lot of time trying to help new Mom. The whole family kicked in a week at a time after they went home so there was a helper in the house for about 8 - 10 weeks. I spent a week myself (ever try to feed two infants at one time?)

Love those little ones. Great news, Ken.

Jim Becker
03-18-2010, 8:53 PM
That really sounds like such a wonderful experience, Ken! I'm glad that the kids are doing better.

Ken Fitzgerald
03-18-2010, 8:57 PM
Jim R. ,

My wife is here to help out for 4 1/2 weeks. I return to Idaho Monday.

Kids....grandkids.....great-grandkids.... Precious and priceless.

Ken Fitzgerald
03-18-2010, 9:09 PM
Tom,

I noticed your location now indicating Georgia. I wondered if it was the same guy who lived near Mike and walked over for the cookout 2 years ago.

Andy Pedler
03-19-2010, 12:02 AM
Congrats Ken! And pass along the good wishes to your family. When our first son was born I hadn't spent much time around babies and was amazed at how small he was when newborn, and he was full term. Then our daughter came along 3 years later and she was also full term, and I was reminded just how tiny they are. Our third (another boy) was born last summer, 5 weeks early, spent 10 days in the NICU, and I was blown away at how small he could be. So soak up the goodness and the memories. You'll blink and they'll be riding bikes and if you turn around they'll be in high school. Congratulations again!

Doug W Swanson
03-19-2010, 12:11 AM
Ken,

Glad to see things are going better for the little ones. Our daughter was born 10 weeks early and weighed just 1lb 7oz. Even though she was tiny, she was pretty healthy and just had to get bigger. We took her home from the hospital 1 day before her due date when she weighed 4.5 lbs.

Now she is 9 years old and you would never know by looking at her what she went through.

The plus side of her being a premie was that I became a stay-at-home dad and have been at it for 9 years now. I may look at going back to full-time work when my kids are out of high school!

Doug

Belinda Williamson
03-19-2010, 7:56 AM
Belinda......

This afernoon.....Little Bit got her first.....drum roll please......Grandpa diaper change.........


No pictures but Sharon did get a video. I'll guarrantee it won't be on youtube....:eek::D

Congratulations, Ken. I would like to request a repeat performance, with pics, since we all know no pics didn't happen! Remember, they're twins so you have to do the same for Half Pint. :D

Besides, you had it easy. . . put diaper on Little Bit, peel paper off tabs, stick tabs in place. No diaper pins, getting the diaper snug but no too snug, then lifting baby only to have diaper slide off. :eek:

In all seriousness, I applaud your active role in helping out with the twins. I doubt my grandfather ever changed my diaper but as soon as I was old enough to walk I followed him everywhere. I have great memories of him, just as all your grandkids and great grandkids will have great memories made with you. You're one of the good guys Ken Fitzgerald. :)

Ken Fitzgerald
03-19-2010, 3:50 PM
Belinda,

My father died just before his 47th birthday. He managed to see only 3 of his grandchildren. He still had 3 children in HS at the time of his death. He never got to see all 6 of his children become contributing adults. I'm the oldest of those 6.

Spending time with my children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren...it's the greatest gift I have ever received....and doing it with my wife...after nearly losing her 16 years ago to cancer.....that is the icing on the cake. I am blessed.

Enough of the seriousness.

Half-pint was awake this morning......making those sucking motions with her mouth....waiting for her Momma to feed her....I was holding her ......swinging her into Grandma.....who was kissing her.....I timed it right. Sharon got her first "kiss" from one of the new granddaughters. She (Sharon) has been proudly proclaiming to everybody today. Half-pint didn't seem quite as impressed.:rolleyes:

Kent A Bathurst
03-19-2010, 3:50 PM
........ pics............

You have to be the "least-bragging-est-great-grandpa" I've ever heard of!! C'mon - quit screwing around, huh? Let's see the girls!! Everyone wants hard proof that the Mods are human!! :D :D :D

Doug Swanson
03-22-2010, 5:16 PM
Congrats Ken!, My daughter is 4 years old...she was born 6 week premature...and she is doing great!...that time in the NICU is tough...alot of beeping,montiors going off, false alarms...it can rattle your nerves. Sounds like your g-grand kids are starting to thrive...

good luck to you and the new parents.
Doug

Mike Fitzgerald
03-22-2010, 9:08 PM
OK, my father left TX without any evidence of being with his grandchildren, so in order to keep him from being harrassed and from all of you claiming that since he has no pics it didn't happen - here you go .... evidence he is a softy!

Steve Schlumpf
03-22-2010, 9:16 PM
Excellent photos Mike! Thanks for sharing!

You sure have some beautiful daughters!!!

Matt Ranum
03-22-2010, 9:28 PM
Beautiful!

Ken Fitzgerald
03-23-2010, 12:10 AM
Guys,

They are indeed beautiful. Grandpa had tears in his eyes at 0515 this morning when we departed for the airport. I fell in love with 2 cuties!

Belinda Williamson
03-23-2010, 8:13 AM
I knew it, I just knew it . . . you are a softie, Ken! :D

Thanks for the pics Mike, your dad is off the hook. You even included the diaper changing pic, which is just precious. :)

Dave Anderson NH
03-23-2010, 11:53 AM
Congats to both Ken and Mike. Such a kindly looking OLD gentleman, but we know better.:D