Cash, Zane, and Cade

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Some People's Kids

As Pinto Bennett once said, "Some people's kids don't know how fast time flies". The boys are 8 weeks old as of yesterday. They said the time would fly by and I have to say that looking back on the whole thing, time has flown by. At other moments it has seemed to crawl very very slow. So slow that if it were a river, you could hardly tell it was still flowing. The slow and the fast working in tandem has helped us arrive at this very point.

The NICU is a strange place. I can be wide awake when we walk in there, and after a few hours I am so drained that I don't think I can even walk to the elevator. Once we get to the ground floor we still have to walk to the car. My whole body and my mind are just exhausted. Other parents that we have talked to have confirmed that they feel the same way. The cause of this is I'm sure a combination of the alarms and buzzers, the flurry of activity, and the constant worry all joining in to create this total feeling of exhaustion. When we left there the other day and I told Carrie that in my entire life as a road musician, I had never felt as completely exhausted as I did at that moment. I know what you are going to say:

"Wait until you get them home!"

True. However, I imagine that the feeling of total exhaustion when they are home will come with a deep sense of fulfillment that is missing in the hospital.

Well, we don't want to get our hopes up too high, but tonight Carrie and I will spend the night at the hospital with one, some, or all of our boys in a room by ourselves. The idea is to have one night up there out of the NICU when we will be solely and completely responsible for their care, and then, and let's not get too excited, we will bring them home.

Knock on wood.

Say a prayer.

Sing a song.

Throw salt over your left shoulder

Pick up a penny that is heads up on the ground and think of us.

Propose a toast to us at happy hour.

Everything at the hospital is being prepared. The car seats are there. The hospital ordered a bunch of extra large razor blades for the circumcisions. They have clothes to come home in. We have a vehicle that can haul them all. The nursery is ready. The dog is excited.

The stage is set.

However, anything can happen. We won't get too excited until they are actually loaded up in the Tahoe.

That's not true.

I'm so excited right now I can't stand it.

My hopes are way up.

Yes, of course we are going to film it and show you.

We can't bring them home without making a totally triumphant video.

Let's take a stroll down memory lane.

Here is Cade Richard on the day he was born, June 2nd, 2010. He was 3 lbs 5.9 ounces. He was on CPAP and was fed through a PICC line. In the few days after his birth, he dropped to below three pounds, because a lot of the weight was fluid in his lungs. They all dropped down to below three at first.

Here is Cade today. He weighs 6 lbs 3.9 ounces. He is taking 80ml of formula every three hours.

Here is Zane Chad. He weighed 2lbs 15 ounces and of course dropped a bit of that. He had the same stuff going on as Cade did.

Here is Zane yesterday. He is exactly the same weight as his brother Cade. 6 lbs 3.9 ounces. All of the boys are taking about the same amount of formula.

Here we have Cash Dean. He was 3 lbs 4.8 ounces at birth. The night this picture was taken, Cash had a collapsed lung and had to have a respirator put on him.

Here is our little bruiser now. He weighed in last night at a whopping 6 lbs 13.3 ounces.

So there you have it. That's what 8 weeks will do to a baby. They have doubled in size. We are extremely fortunate to have three healthy babies.

Today we hope for the best. As I said before, anything can happen, but we are so close we can feel it. Perhaps this weekend the boys will be home to watch their first Red Sox game with the old man.

Don't worry, I won't give them any beer.

Monday, July 26, 2010

The Big Man

God's Assistant: you there?

God: Yes, I'm here. I just got back from Austin.

God's Assistant: You've been spending a lot of time there recently.

God: I know. I love it there. It's been a while since I really got to hang out in Austin. I went to Willie's 4th of July Picnic the other day. That was fun. Hung out on Willie's Bus. Nothings changed there let me tell ya.

God's Assistant: I haven't got to do anything this summer. I'm always in Temple at the hospital with the Triplets and their parents. I would have liked to have seen Willie too.

God: But remember what happened the last time you hung out on Willie's bus? You fell down on the way out.

God's Assistant: I thought I could handle it.

God: Maybe next time. I know you have been busy this summer. I appreciate all of your hard work. After they come back to Austin, you really need to come with me to Santa Rita and try their shrimp tacos. They have great margaritas there too. The other day I went there disguised as a UT Coed.

God's Assistant: I wouldn't know. Are those new sandals?

God: Yep, picked them up on South Congress at some shop. No big deal. Listen, I know you are spending a lot of time at that hospital with those boys, but we're getting ready to send them home. I think after that you and I should head down to South Padre for a while. I really want to get a closer look at the Gulf. Jesus turned water into wine, but I'm going to one up him and turn crude oil into beer. What you think of that?

God's Assistant: Sounds nice. Whenever you decide to send these boys home we can do whatever. I need a break. Those Krug parents are insane. I mean they are tightly wound. I pity anyone who messes with those kids. That woman is extremely protective of her cubs. I thought she was going to hit HIM in the mouth the other day.

God: Oh that's coming. Just wait. I think I may send the loud one home first. That Zane is quite the character. Let 'em have a couple of days with him and then send Cash and Cade home.

God's Assistant: They turned their dining room into some sort of weird triplet jungle play room with three bouncy seats and all types of baby stuff.

God: They are way into it aren't they.

God's Assistant: Oh yes.

God: That's good. What do you think of my new cowboy hat?

God's Assistant: I don't know if it really goes with the sandals.

God: That's how they do it in Texas. You go to these outdoor festivals and everyone is wearing flip flops and cowboy hats.

God's Assistant: That's weird.

God: It is weird. It's not how I intended, but hey who am I to question it?

God's Assistant: You're God, you can make them stop.

God: That would be me messing with free will and we both know I don't do that.

God's Assistant: True. Besides a few select artists, you have let them ruin country music.

God: There is still plenty of good music. By the way is J.C. still working on his pedal steel playing?

God's Assistant: J.C. is quite the pedal steel player. He's got a band with a bunch of guys. Hank Williams and that bunch.

God: Good! Can't wait to hear them.

God's Assistant: So....the boys all weigh around six pounds. Mom and Dad seem to be handling it all pretty good. I think they're ready.

God: Yep, they are ready. The boys will let them know when it's time.

God's Assistant: I know I'm ready.

God: As soon as it's over, your first beer is on me. Where's my IPOD? I'm going to San Antonio.

God's Assistant: You probably left it in the Escalade.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


Greetings from Austin, Texas. We are the people of the sun. I say we are the people of the sun because sometimes the sun feels so close that you are afraid it is going to burn a hole in the top of your head and scorch your soul. I love Texas. It's my home and the home of my family. My boys were born in Texas, making them True Texans. This is something that Mom and Dad can't lay claim to. However, Texas is hot. The humidity is high and the sweat pours out of your body draining the very life out of you. I may not be from Texas, but I have earned the title of Texan. I'm not complaining mind you, I know that it is hot everywhere this summer. However, it has been pointed out to me that when something happens to me, it is worse then when it happens to other people. At least I think it is, and that's really all that matters.

Enough about the weather. How are them boys? Well the boys are Rocking and they are Rolling. I just spoke to their night NICU nurse, and she told me the following:

Cash: Cash weighs 5 lbs 14.6 ounces. He is taking all his feedings from a bottle, keeping his temperature up nicely, and is in a crib very close to his brothers.

Zane: Zane weighs 5 lbs 5.8 ounces. He just got his feeding tube out this morning and is taking all his feedings from a bottle. He is also doing well with his temperature and his crib is right beside his brother Cade.

Cade: Cade weighs 5 lbs 5.9 ounces. He is taking all his feedings from a bottle and keeping his temperature up nicely.

Now, we did think that Mr. Cash was going to be able to come home this week. However, he has been having one heart rate drop per day, and this means that he has to stay in the hospital. Each baby has to go seven days without a heart rate drop before they get to come home. This is extremely frustrating, because we are RIGHT THERE. We are right on the cusp of bringing them home. In addition to this, they are so alert and awake it's awesome. They look at you and make little noises like they are trying to talk. They grab your nose and your ears and squeeze. Cade even threw his pacifier at me and he used his left hand which made me very excited about his Major League pitching career. There is nothing more dominating in this world then a southpaw who throws heat, and Cade had good velocity with his pacifier. He brought his left arm over the top and rolled his shoulder. He showed really good form and I was particularly impressed with his release. I see good things on the horizon.

Back to the Heart Rate Drops. These are very common for premature babies. They usually grow out of them at 36 to 37 weeks, and the boys were 36 weeks on Tuesday. When I spoke to the nurse this morning, she attributed the heart rate drops to just being little. They are feeding every three hours all by bottle, and this wears a little guy out. This is when the drops usually occur. Cash had one last night and Cade had one yesterday. Zane hasn't had one in a while, so hopefully he is over them. We will wait and see. Yesterday, we spoke with Dr. Cipriani about the heart rate drops. Christy is one of the nurses that has been with them the past several days. She thought that Cash might be having them because of reflux issues. She asked Carrie if she or I had acid reflux problems. I have had them for a long time, so Carrie told the nurse and then the nurse told the Doctor, and this conversation took place:

Dr. Cipriani: It is possible that the pauses (heart rate drops) can be attributed to reflux. I understand that you have had issues with this in the past. Have you been on any medication for this?

Me: Yep. I have been on medication.

Dr. Cipriani: That could be what is causing Cash's trouble.

Me: My acid reflux is worse when I have been drinking whiskey.

Dr. Cipriani: Yes, alcohol does make reflux worse.

Me: True. I find that if I just lay off of the whiskey I'm a lot better.

Dr. Cipriani: I see you have pinpointed the problem.

Me: I sure have. I doubt Cash has been on the whiskey, but you never know. He is a Krug.

Dr. Cipriani: We will wait a few days and see if he gets better before we run any tests.

Me: Sounds good to me. I'll try to keep everyone off the whiskey, myself included.

The doctor smiled at this point, and I'm pretty sure she doesn't know exactly how to take me.

Anyhow, that's the story on the boys. As they say at the hospital, we will let the boys decide when they are ready to come home. They will let us know when they are ready. I do know that Carrie and I are ready. We can taste victory and it has us on edge.

I have been trying to keep myself occupied and keep myself from worrying too much. This is hard to do. Simple distractions are a good thing. One thing that keeps me going are good hamburgers. There is never a time when I won't eat a hamburger. Even if I just had a hamburger, I would STILL like to have a hamburger. Carrie likes hamburgers too, but my passion for hamburgers is unrivaled. We have been trying various hamburgers for the past year, and I would like to share some of my favorites with you.

Mighty Fine Burgers Fries and Shakes:

This is an Austin based company with three locations. Their burgers are awesome made with 100% pure beef from cattle with absolutely no steroids or growth hormones. The menu at this place is simple. Their name includes the whole menu. You can get a hot dog there, but why? Their shakes are hand dipped with blue bell ice cream. The shakes are a high point, and a must if you visit Mighty Fine. Their fries are cut on the premises and are extremely good. This is one of my favorites.

5 Guys Burgers and Fries

This is a national chain that we just tried for the first time the other day. I have to say I really enjoyed it. Once again the menu is simple and the burgers are great. There are a few more options here and I had the cheeseburger and added grilled mushrooms. The fries were great and Carrie pointed out that they get extra credit for having Malt Vinegar to dip your fries in. No milkshakes here, and that could be considered a demerit. However, if you have seen the baby room video, you know that I do not suffer from a milk shake deficiency. I really don't need them, but they are so good. We will definitely be returning to 5 Guys milkshakes or not.


I know, this is a national chain and it can be very inconsistent. However, when you get a good one, a Fuddrucker's burger is a great thing. I like the menu options, and the beef is exceptional at these places. I like how they are made to order and they have sweet potato fries. I'm sure most of you have tried them, but they seem to be making a resurgence and doing well here in Texas. They are generally independently owned and operated. This can explain part of the inconsistency, but when you get a good one, it's really good. Shakes are good here too.

Sam's Burger Joint

This is a place in San Antonio where the band plays. They have incredible hamburgers. This place has the vintage old time hamburger joint feel that I absolutely love. The buns are toasted to perfection and the meat is superb. If you are ever in San Antonio, go here.

Hut's Hamburgers

This is an Austin place on West 6th Street. They have various burgers on the menu and I have enjoyed each time I have been there. Carrie hasn't been there yet, and maybe I can talk her into a trip someday soon.

All these hamburger joints are good ones. I would recommend them to anyone. In the comment section, please tell us about your favorite places to get a burger in your city. People from all over read the blog and we would love to hear from you. Leaving a comment will provide a great public service. This will allow the reader to know where to stop for a great burger if he or she finds themselves in your town.

Now for some photos:

This is Cade. That little wound on his head is where an IV went bad. It's healing up very nicely and should be gone soon. He is starting to act a bit like Zane. Pretty demanding and getting louder by the day. They are all three very noisy babies.

Here is Zane. As of this morning, that feeding tube you see is gone. If it were up to Zane, it would be all about Zane, all the time.

Here is Cash. He is very alert and is always looking around. Yesterday we gave him a bath. When we first put him in the water, he screamed bloody murder for all of one second. Then he smiled.

These last two are from yesterday when I got to hold Cade and Zane at the same time. The boys can't wait to get home and watch their first Red Sox game. Cade told me that the Sox are going to turn their season around and make the play-offs. He is also ready to pitch if needed.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Baby Room

This is a video that we made that takes you on a quick three minute tour of the baby room. It's only three minutes because the room is pretty small. When you upload a video to You Tube, it picks the still shot that you see below at random. As you can see I have a very idiotic look on my face. Maybe that should tell me something. Anyway, we know that a lot of people are curious as to what it looks like to have three cribs in the same room and how all that is going to work, so here you go. The lighting is bad and we have absolutely no idea how to make videos.

In other news, the boys are doing great and we should have them home before too long if everything goes right. Cash and Cade are both over 5 pounds, and Zane was 4 lbs 14.6 ounces yesterday. We just need them to take all of their feedings by bottle, keep their temperature up on their own, and have no heart rate drops for seven days.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Are we there yet?

I am not too impressed with myself. I can't seem to keep myself or my emotions in check. The road we are on is fraught with peril. It takes a steady hand to guide oneself down the road and my hand is currently not very steady. I am going to have to do better. Earlier this week, Zane had a distended stomach, meaning that he was a bit bloated and we thought he was sick. Carrie and I both lost it, and I flipped out on the Doctor. I am sorry about this, and it something that I'm not very proud of. It turns out that Zane wasn't sick. Zane is fine. The next day the X-Rays of his stomach looked great. I am very thankful for that, but I am deeply troubled by how I handled the situation. I don't want Carrie to feel like I am too volatile to be involved when things get heavy.

Since the boys were born, and even before that, I have lived in constant fear of the unknown. Medicine is not my area of expertise. I'm not exactly sure what my area of expertise is, but it's definitely not medicine. Since this area is such a black hole for me, I find myself thinking about what's next. What am I missing? Is there a question I can ask or something that I could learn about that will prevent some bad thing from happening? Carrie and I have learned a lot about babies and pediatric medicine. We have learned just enough to make us petrified of what we don't know. These boys have been poked, prodded, had blood drawn, been given blood, had IVs, PICC lines, had X-Rays taken, samples taken, cultures grown, and been examined by all types of people in the medical profession. They have handled it like little champs and each one of them ALWAYS does something to let Carrie and I know that they are okay. Their simple acts of reassurance have literally kept me from losing my mind.

For me, being in the NICU is the most exhausting experience of my life. On Saturday we arrived there at 10:30 in the morning. By 2:00 p.m. I could barely keep my eyes open, and I fell asleep in a chair while Carrie was giving Cash his bottle. The very core of my being was absolutely spent. When we left the hospital I told Carrie that I had never been so tired in all of my life. I actually thought I might have some sort of disease. Sometimes I feel so detached from myself that I feel like I am actually just watching myself go through this experience. It's like my life is a movie that I am simply watching and I have little or no control of how the plot plays out.

On Saturday night, we went to a concert down in New Braunfels, Texas. It was our friends Micky and The Motorcars, Reckless Kelly, and Charlie Robison. Carrie and I had been to the hospital all day, and we felt like we deserved a night out to blow off some steam. We had a great time with our friends, but it was hard to relax. I would look over at Carrie and I knew she was thinking about our boys. I had a great time, but it was impossible to totally relax given our current situation. On the way home I was laying in the backseat even more tired than before thinking to myself, "What if the boys needed me right now?" Carrie was driving and she had it completely together. I don't know how much help I would have been if I was needed and that really bothered me.

All of this, and the boys are fine. They have had issues and we have had setbacks, but in the general, they have been minor. Knock on wood for us if you have any handy. They are all rapidly approaching the 5 pound mark. Cash is taking every feeding from a bottle, and the other two are just about at that point. Last Thursday, the Doctor said this:

"In about two weeks, they are going to be at the point where they will be thinking about going home."

This is awesome news. We are seeing the light at the end of all this and it feels great. We absolutely can't wait to have them here. Things will feel complete when they are home. It will be awesome. I can't think about it too much, because that will make each minute seem longer. Having them home will also be very scary, because at that point it's on us. I'm sure we will do fine and I have every confidence in Carrie. This mothering thing comes very naturally to her and the transition for her into motherhood has been so seamless that she hasn't noticed the change. I am amazed at what she has become. I am the one that needs help.

I look back at all this, and I realize that our time in the NICU has been a blessing. The boys are already on a schedule that they are fine with. This will make things at home so much easier. It has also taught us how lucky we are and really made us appreciate what we have. I see the lady across from us who has been up there with her daughter since January. She has two kids at home, and she has made the 60 mile trek to the NICU for over seven months. I have no idea how she has done it. When I get down, I think of her.

So...the baby room is done. The Tahoe has been outfitted with three car seats. We seem to have just about everything we need. Each day we get one day closer to the day that Carrie and I have decided will be the greatest day of our lives.

I promise I will film it.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Triplets Together

Today was a big day. We didn't know it was possible, but thanks to Laura our NICU Nurse for today, we got to put all the boys together for the first time. We didn't know how it would work because of the monitors and all the wires they are connected to, but she made it happen for us. I grabbed the camera and took some very amateurish video that you can see here. This marks the first video here at Rolling For Trips. Carrie and I both got a little emotional, and if you turn up the volume on your computer you can hear exactly what went on. You can even hear the boys make noise in whatever voodoo triplet language they have going on. Cash is on the far left with Cade in the center and Zane on the far right. As you can see there are two parts to watch. Depending on how this video is received, we will probably do some more video. Maybe I can get better at filming these events.


At this point, I feel sorry for anyone that doesn't have triplets. That may sound like a bold statement coming from someone that doesn't have these triplets at home, but it's true. At one month old we have three distinct individuals with three very different personalities. I am amazed at the fact that we are already getting a glimpse into how these kids might be as they grow up. It's both exciting and a little scary. I think that these boys have picked up traits from both Carrie and I, and if you have had to deal with either of us, you know that that is a good and a bad thing.

Cade is emerging as the sweet little boy. He rarely fusses about anything. When you go over to his crib, he just smiles and reaches up for your hand. He is by far the most quiet and calm of the three. They all love to be held, but Cade just seems so content when Carrie and I are around him. He loves to be tightly swaddled in a blanket and he looks like a little angel when he is asleep. He reminds me of his mother when she is sleeping. They both have the same nose. In fact, he is so quiet, calm, and content that if he didn't look exactly like his brothers, I would question whether or not he was really a member of our family. Carrie and I are not know for being quiet or calm, let alone content. Yesterday, Cade weighed 4lbs 7.6 ounces.

Up next is Zane. Zane is showing a bit more of Mom and Dad's attributes. As I have said before, they get fed every three hours. Cade is first, then Zane, and finally Cash gets fed. Each hands on period lasts for 30 minutes. They get their temperature taken, their diaper changed, fed by a bottle or feeding tube, and held for a while. About 20 minutes into Cade's time we hear from Zane.


We look over and he is kicking around in his crib.

Zane: WHAAAA!!!

Carrie: Sounds like Zane is ready.

Mike: He can wait his turn.

We are not about to start giving into every whim of these little guys. So far, we have been very good at making them wait their turn. Let's hope we can continue.

Anyhow, back to Zane. Zane seems to be the little terror of the outfit. He is pretty demanding and likes to get his way. They all hate to get their temperature taken, but Zane hates it with a passion that the other two lack. When you start to mess with him, he is instantly yelling. This stops if he immediately gets his pacifier or if you pick him up. One time he managed to grab a fistful of his mother's hair. He has that lead singer/lead guitar player thing going on. If it is not all about Zane, then it's just not happening. I can see it in his eyes. It reminds me

The other day this went on with Zane; Carrie went to tuck him back into his crib and put him on his right side. Zane responded with anger. She then tried his back. More anger. Finally, she put him on his left side and he was instantly calm. Yesterday Zane weighted 4 lbs 4.6 ounces.

Up next is Cash. Our little Cash buddy. Cash is extremely noisy and I believe he makes noise just to hear himself. While Cade and Zane both like to be bundled up sort of tight, Cash likes to kick back and stretch out. When you look over at his crib, you can usually see one or two legs sticking out of the blanket. His arms are usually above his head and he just hangs out like this. He doesn't really care what you do with him or how you lay him. If he could talk, I believe the conversation would go like this:

Me: Hi Cash Buddy.

Cash: Yo Dad. What's up?

Me: Just seeing how you are.

Cash: I'm just chillin' bro. It's all good.

Me: You need anything.

Cash: Man, I could use a bottle and maybe some alone time with a nurse if you get a chance. Other than that I'm good. Maybe later, you can roll a T.V. up in here. I could check out some Sports Center. No hurry though.

Me: You got it little guy.

Cash just takes his feeding and goes back to sleep. When he is awake he just looks around and checks things out. Cash weighed 4 lbs 10.6 ounces. They are letting him have as much food as he wants. He is a bit further along than the other two.

Cash reminds me of Carrie and I after a few drinks. Zane reminds me of Carrie and I after we have been on the phone with AT&T or an insurance company. Cade reminds me of us on our very best day.

In the end, they are all awesome and I may be the luckiest guy in the world to have such a beautiful family. I gotta go. We are leaving right now to head back up there........

Stay tuned.

Up next, a tour of the baby room......................

Monday, July 5, 2010

Fourth of July

The 4th of July is typically one of my favorite holidays. In the past it has meant the usual outside BBQ beer music friends celebration. This year was different. This year we spent the holiday at the hospital in the NICU with our boys. On July 2nd they turned one month old. On one hand the month has seemed slow and tedious. On the other hand, the month has flown by. The actual time we spend with the boys goes by very fast. The time we spend away from them seems to go by both slow and fast at the same time if this is possible. The time moves slow when you take into consideration that they aren't home with us. The time moves fast when you realize there are not enough hours in the day to accomplish all the things you want to do before they get home.

I know that I am biased, but our boys are absolutely amazing. They are doing so well. Cade has bounced back from his little stomach problem and is back on mother's milk. Zane is completely off his nasal cannula and he and Cash are both receiving two bottles per day. As of last night Cash weighs 4 lbs 3.5 ounces, Zane weight 3 lbs 15.5 ounces and Cade weighs 3 lbs 15 ounces. This means that they have all gained around 1 pound in a month. The heart rate drops have stopped as far as I can tell. We still have some oxygen drops, but they pretty much recover on their own. We don't even raise an eyebrow at these anymore. Just wait a second and they will start breathing again. The best thing about having them in the NICU is that they are on a schedule and really getting used to that. The plan from the beginning was to get them on a schedule and this is happening in the NICU. I love schedules and plans. These things make sense to me. Every three hours they get changed and fed. They also get their temperature taken and anything that needs done to them is done. They call these things "hands on". At this point they get a bit fussy right before it's their turn. If they are fussy it's pretty easy to make them stop and they all three do exactly the same thing.

When one of them is fussing, I simply place my hand on top of the baby's head. This seems to make them instantly happy. I place my middle finger by one ear and my thumb by the other ear. All three of them instantly reach up and grab a thumb and a finger in each hand and squeeze. Then I place the pacifier into the mouth of the baby and instantly everything is cool. They open their eyes and look up at me. They are extremely advanced and obviously insanely intelligent but they can't speak...yet. However, they look at me as if to say, "Thanks Dad. I was a little scared for a second but if I can hold onto you I'll be fine. By the way, if you can speed up this whole me getting fed thing I would really appreciate it." At this point, getting fed from a bottle is like running a marathon for them. After drinking 1 ounce of milk, they are ready to go back to sleep. They are taking in a pretty large amount of food. One ounce eight times in a twenty four hour period. That's a half pound of milk when they only weigh four pounds. It's a lot of work, so they sleep a lot. That's cool cause I have been re-reading "Lonesome Dove" at the hospital when they are sleeping. On a side note, if you don't love "Lonesome Dove" and the author of this book Larry McMurtry, then we have absolutely nothing in common. The way he tells a story and puts you inside the minds of his characters is amazing. I highly recommend his work.

So....we are in survival mode. The situation we find ourselves in is the strangest thing. It feels like our family is strung out along I-35 between Temple and Austin. You never feel comfortable in the hospital and you never feel comfortable at home. We just try and get through each day. In my case, I cannot allow myself to think of them coming home or think too far into the future. The thought of another month of this is too depressing. I can think about one day, so I try and do that.

Yesterday, we got to put Zane with Cash. Cade still has an IV, so we haven't been able to put all three of them together. I missed putting Cade and Cash together, but I was lucky enough to be there for this. Although they were both tired, you can tell that they feel at ease with each other. It's like they are saying "Dude! Where have you been?"

Cash is on the left and Zane is on the right.

When we showed up yesterday, one of the NICU nurses Jaylee was hanging out with Zane. It's such a comfort to Carrie and I that there are so many great nurses who care so much about our boys. We have made lifelong friends in the NICU, it's one of upsides of spending time there.

Finally, this is me and Cash. I don't know what to say about this one. I do know that it's cool to be a Dad.

I believe that all of this NICU business is taking place to teach Carrie and I a bit of patience. I had determined that together we did not possess a single ounce of patience between the two of us. I think we are getting better. However, the stress of the NICU is getting to us both.

Personally, I have taken all my anger out on the World Cup Soccer thing. I can't believe people watch this. The sport is completely wrong. The crowd makes noise constantly. Every place you go, they have the World Cup on and that annoying buzz the crowd makes me to want to plow my vehicle into the side of a sports bar. A sport where they celebrate a tie is just a celebration of mediocrity. Carrie and I were eating at a place in Temple the other day, and Soccer was on every television.

Mike: I HATE this! How can people watch this?

Carrie: You hate soccer. Maybe they hate baseball. What about that?

Mike: Good! I want people that like soccer to hate baseball. That will make me feel better. In fact if you watch soccer, you shouldn't be ALLOWED to watch baseball. Soccer is Un-American.

It will be my luck that all three of my boys will love soccer, and I will have to support them in this love. I will probably have to spend all of my spare time at soccer games or whatever you call them. However, there will be one upside to this. Carrie will be a soccer mom and in that case we ARE getting a mini-van.