September 29, 2013

Adios Bottles

We did it...we are a bottle free home!! When we brought the babies home we started with 8 bottles a day x4 which made it 32 bottles a day. Between all the bottles we used this came out to 176 bottle parts a day to wash. You can imagine how excited we were with every. single. bottle. we illuminated. With each bottle drop we regained a little bit of freedom. When the older kids switched from bottles to sippy cups it was no big deal because they only got bottles on the days I worked otherwise they were breastfed. The big kids literally blew out their first year candles and were handed a sippy cup. This didn't work on the quads unfortunately.

Natalie on a daddy day while mommy worked.

Aubrey enjoying her bottle.
And Drew with his bottle...or maybe Grandpa David's!
Starting two weeks before the quads turned one we started switching the babies over from formula to whole milk. It was a wonderful thing to start using less formula. The mixing of formula got really old after the first month of doing it. Some nights I wanted to do anything but make up bottles. We were SO very fortunate in the formula department because we had someone who donated the majority of the babies formula for the first year of their life. We probably only had to spend a total of $250 in formula for the babies. A HUGE blessing for our family. Paul and I would send each other a text when we would open the door and see formula sitting on our step. The text simply said "Santa was here" because that is the feeling we got each time it was dropped off. We slowly started replacing 2 oz of formula with whole milk and the babies did great. A couple days later we would had another ounce of whole milk until the day after their first birthday when they got full bottles of whole milk. The babies were going through a gallon of milk a day for the last two months. Paying for the milk wasn't the hard part, it was making sure we always had milk on hand to make the next days bottles.

The days when an ounce seemed like so much.

Daddy's first bottle for the quads.

Our tandem feeding method for many months.

Everyone got in on the action.

I had never been a fan of bottle propping but with four babies all wanting to eat at the same time we needed to.

A beautiful thing...four babies all holding their own bottle.
I had plans to pack up the bottles when we moved and leave them packed but there was no way the babies were ready. They were eating solids great but all four would let you know when it was time for their morning, afternoon and evening bottles. Rylan would start it and within 3 minutes they would all be crawling around out feet. As soon as they saw the bottles in our hands they would follow us like little ducks to the carpet and chug their milk down. When they were done they would play happily until nap time. I knew they still needed those bottles.

About a week and a half ago I came home from work and Paul said he had only given the babies two bottles for the day. They had played through their afternoon bottle without much complaint so we decided to try two bottles again the next day. They again did well so we knew it was time to start weaning them. At the same time I found two sippy cups that all the kids did well with. One was an Innobaby and the other is one the older kids use everyday, Contigo Sport. Finally finding sippy's that worked was huge for us. After about three days of having success with two bottles we decided to cut the night time bottle which we had absolutely no protesting with. The next morning they got their last morning bottle and we said goodbye to bottles...well almost! Daddy did have one day where he had given them two bottles because he said they were extremely crabby and they needed their milk. But after that day they have not needed them. Over the last couple of days their sippy cup skills have taken off and they do great with almost any brand I give them. They still haven't figured out quite how to hold them and get liquid out themselves so we go down the line and let each kid drink what they want before moving on down the line. This is done a couple times throughout the meal. The line process also helps immensely on decreasing the number of times we have to bend over to retrieve thrown cups and my floors only end up with a couple milk splatters.

The two sippy cups that the kids finally got the hang of which allowed us to transition from bottles to sippy's.

Only a portion of the sippy cups we have.
 The one thing we have noticed since taking away all bottles is that we go through way less milk but the quads are eating us out of house and home. Saturday morning our family went through 18 eggs for breakfast! I can not even imagine what it is going to be like when they are teenagers. We will probably be going through 2 gallons of milk a day then! This weekend I gathered up all the bottles and brought them to the "get rid of" box in the garage. I told Paul that all the bottles were our of da' house and he replied, 'well don't expect me to tell you not to put them in that box because we might have more.' I think going through 18 eggs in one meal may have frightened him just a bit!

It is weird to know that my babies are growing up and it seems like such a big milestone for us to have made it to the part in this adventure where we do not have to think about making, packing, heating or cleaning bottles. I wish we could say we have more time in our day but four mobile babies leaves little time for anything.

1 comment:

  1. Yay!! I feel ya... I don't think getting rid of bottles really freed up much time. Now I'm washing a zillion sippy cups, plates and bowls every day instead! So glad you guys were able to make the switch. We are going through about 3-4 gallons of milk a week right now I think, and the other day I made chicken nuggets for an easy lunch and each baby ate EIGHT. Yes, apiece. Sometimes they eat a crazy amount and it just makes me afraid of my grocery bill in a couple years!!!


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