Wednesday, January 23, 2008

We are coming home!

The first picture of all of them in the house together.


Well the time has finally arrived. Miss Danna finally busted out, and we are heading home. We fly out tomorrow at around 11:00 a.m. It has been quite a ride here in Phoenix, and we wanted to thank some people who have made it all possible.




First and foremost, we thank God everyday for giving us the strength and the means to bring four HEALTHY children into this world. It has been amazing to see how everything has worked out even when we were stressing about how we were going to do it. He has one helluva plan, and we are so thankful that He feels we can handle these little boogers.






First of all, among the many humans we need to thank, thank you so much to Becky Brady. As some of you know, she is a travel nurse and she took an assignment in Phoenix specifically to help us with living arrangements. Not only did she do this for us, but she has done so many more things too. She has been an incredible source of support, encouragement, and happiness (not to mention she is always ready to try a new restaurant). She is also one HELL of a babysitter. And Cary, we don't know what you are talking about with this supposed 12 hour sleep schedule. Try 16 hour sleep schedule. Seriously though, we don't know what we would have done without her.






Becky holding Pius and Forrest one evening at home.



Next we need to mention the second most helpful person we have had down here. Mark Moore has been our tour guide, our computer tech, our "cook", and so much more. Despite not really knowing either of us before this ordeal, he has never hesitated when we have asked a favor. He has helped us out more than he will ever know and we will be forever grateful. We will really miss spending time with him, and hopefully he will be up to "the Dub" to see our squad soon.



Mark is actively looking for babysitting jobs after he completes the 12-step program for fear of babies.



Another set of people that we need to mention are all of our physicians and nurses, beginning with Dr. Tjaden and his staff. They got us started on our journey by helping us create our little miracles. Our Wichita ob, Dr. Feuille, and Moni's primary care physician, Dr. Nickel, were also instrumental in getting us to Phoenix for care and understanding that we needed the most experienced high risk pregnancy care. The next set of medical professionals that we need to mention are the Phoenix Perinatal Associates. Drs. Elliott, Strong, and Edwards were all amazing, extremely knowledgeable, and so reassuring for us. They were always in our corner and did what was best for Moni and the babies. Another group that we would like to thank are the neonatalogists for the babies. Drs. Slater-Meyer, Leonard, Amar, and Martin have been unwavering in their baby-first mentality. Whether we wanted to hear certain things or not, they always told us what was happening with our children and the plans for their care.



Monica made sure not to let me forget the nurses. Starting with Moni's first visit to the hospital, she always had excellent nurses. There were so many, but she had a few that consistently took care of her including Tallie, Cherise, and Crystal from Banner Good Samaritan 5-B. They spoiled all of us including our visitors, and were always supportive through the good days and the bad. As for the kids, they also always had great nurses. Their primary care nurses, Gwen and Peggy, were especially good to all of us and we will never forget everything they did for us. Although not a nurse, we had the BEST sonotech of all time. Olava, who we always requested and waited for, was such a positive person. She always seemed to have a way with the babies when they were still in utero and they really seemed to behave for her.



Peggy and Danna have lots of secrets they won't tell mom and dad.



Gwen cuddling with Danna and Laine before Laine busts out.



Another set of nurses and medical personnel who took care of us, albeit from afar, were those at Wesley. It seemed that we had a new care package from them all the time, and they donated PTO hours and kept Moni up on all the latest Wesley gossip. We can't wait to get back to see all of them.



We would also like to thank our insurance company. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas has been extremely helpful and understanding of our situation. Thank you especially to our RN case manager, Jenny. Thank you so much for decreasing any possible headaches that could have arisen.






We also need to thank Quik Trip. They were so flexible and so supportive of our unique situation, and even more so, after the kids arrived. My store manager for all but one week, Dan, was so understanding and helpful all of the time. I plan on working at the QT back home, and the people down here have helped to make the transition very smooth.






We also had so many wonderful visitors. Everybody really helped to ease the homesickness. Moni's friends Karen, Deb, and Melody made for wonderful guests. Our friends Yaeger, Goertz, Snook, and Donna really helped us feel like we were back home for awhile. My cousins Steph and Kelly helped make my birthday weekend awesome even though Moni was on house arrest. Moni's brother Paul and his girlfriend Shawnda and sisters Emily, Rachel, and Mollie made special visits to see us. They were wonderful low maintenance visitors knowing that with four children we were unable to entertain too much. My aunt Rosie who was down to visit her buddy, took us out to dinner and spent a fun evening with us. We will take credit for Moni's Uncle Phil and Aunt Cathy even though they came to see Becky. Without all of them our kids would be without proxy Godparents. Our family (Roger, Marsha, Mike, Vicki, Bucko, Ryno, and Lainie) coming over Thanksgiving was home away from home. They definitely made us feel comfortable and special through the holidays.






We would also like to thank St. Gregory's Catholic Church. Frs. Dougherty and Sandberg and Deacon Carmen really helped us to stay connected with our faith. They were also there for us with getting the babies their emergency baptisms.






The Tubres have been our saving grace on more than one occasion. From telling us what questions to ask, to giving us a heads up on the adventures of parenting quadruplets, to letting us gripe about certain policies and people that we crossed at the hospital, they were a supportive outlet for us so many times. They also gave us a good start on our preemie clothes even though Pius and Forrest are already too big for them. We cherish the friendship we have developed and thank God that He put them in our lives. We are even thankful for DeeDee despite the poor gambling karma shared between us.





We would also like to thank our family and friends who have already signed up to help when we get home. Kelly said that she has already started receiving emails from many family members and friends letting her know what and when they can do things. The schedule is going to be a great way to make sure that everyone is getting time to visit and we aren't getting too overwhelmed with people. Thanks again.



And finally, to all of you, our faithful commenters and supporters. You guys have kept us entertained throughout the worries and the joys. You helped us stay positive and helped the slow time before the babies came pass quickly. We are so thankful for all of your thoughts and prayers.



Well...another new chapter now begins. We are so excited to be home and see what surprises these guys have in store for us. As long as you guys are interested we will keep our little blog going. Until next time...



Sincerely,



Billy, Monica, Pius, Forrest, Danna, and Laine Graf

42 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am curious as to how you'll get the crew home? You're flying? I hope you have help with 4 babies on a plane! Just wondered the logistics b/c it's always fascinating to me!

Anonymous said...

Wow- first one and I don't even know ya!! Have a safe, uneventful trip home tomorrow. I will be saying a prayer at 11:00 for just that!
I'm so glad to know you are going to keep your blog up since I find your words highly entertaining. This next adventure in your lives will be so rewarding you won't even miss sleep too much :) - God bless the two of you and those four beautiful little ones.
Lori

Anonymous said...

oh crap - i wasn't first after all!

EMO said...

Man, I am a pregnant mess. I couldn't stop crying while reading this message and looking at the pictures. I am just SO happy for you guys, and am so proud at the way that you have handled everything.
I wish we could all come "greet" you at the hospital when you make it home. Even if to just see carseats and blankets. :)
I can't wait to hear about your journey in Wichita.
Love you all!
Erin
What a wonderful post by the way!
And Danna looks so cute and tiny with all of her brothers!

Anonymous said...

Big lump in my throat at reading this. You have done so well and I feel nothing but great hope for the future of your wonderful little family. I will see you when the weather warms but in the meantime look forward to seeing on the blog my little double great nieces and nephews! I love you! Aunt DD

Anonymous said...

CONGRATULATIONS!

I love the photo at the top of the page. Is that Pius, Forrest, Danna, and Laine (from left to right)?

Danna looks so delicate next to her brothers, but I suspect she will be a tough girl before long. They are all beautiful. What lucky babies to have such a loving family.

Billy Graf said...

Yes, it is oldest from left to right...Pius, Forrest, Danna, and Laine. Thanks for reminding me.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes. How great is this. Coming HOME---- and with 4 little miracles. Well, 2 "little" miracles and 2 chunk-a-monks. Like the others before me, I have tears in my eyes and am thankful I can be a tiny part of this wonderful adventure. Will see you when I am on the schedule. What is next for Becky? Is she heading back to Wichita soon? Better get back to putting away Christmas decorations. Be safe. Melody

Anonymous said...

Yes, please keep the blog going...as much as you can. For those of us who are incarcerated, we need something to look forward to. I realize it may just be me, but please humor me! I would love to come by your place and see you and the kids but I am afraid it will be some time before that can happen! So, if you guys could throw me the a bone occasionally, that'd be great! But I know you guys are busy but there will be people out in cyberland looking forward to the next post!

I am so happy to hear you guys are coming home! The little ones are adorable. Danna is amazing!

We miss you all bunches. Can't wait to see you(whenever that'll be!). Have a safe trip home, we will be thinking of you!

Delane and Dan

Budda said...

Awesome Post and pictures. I am sure all your family and friends 'thank you' for the past 5 or so months of great entertainment!
You are a special family. Just can't wait!!!! 13 or so more hours!!!
Love you!
Mama Budda

Anonymous said...

Great news! Thanks so much for the update. It was emotional :) We of course want you guys to continue updating on this site. I know you guys will be very busy so it probably won't be as often.

The babies are all looking soo cute. When I enlarged the first photo I totally could see billy's nose and mouth in Forrest when he was crying.

Have a safe trip back. I will be thinking about and praying for all of you as you return home.
Love ya---Andrea

L said...

Gee I'll bet there won't be much sleeping tonight with all of the excitement of going home tommorrow. The little ones are so precious, Danna is so petite compared to the boys , but isn't that the way it is supposed to be. Mark doesn't look like he has done the baby holding much, he told me he was going to take one group plus Mom or Dad!!! You will all be in my prayers tommorrow and will continue to be so that all goes well at home. I can't wait to see them and you of course. Love you all Aunt Laverna

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful journey you are embarking on. May your next 18 year be filled with joy and continued wonder as those adorable bundles grow into busy toddlers, curious school children and energetic teens. May you continue to be blessed with health, wonderful family and good friends.
Kathy

Anonymous said...

Bring'm home.

Scott G.

Anonymous said...

Hope you guys have a safe trip home. Btw, how did you guys come up with such odd names like Pius and Forrest??

vanyelgh in KC said...

Just to let you know that you even have well wishers in KC. I was introduced to y'all by Kathy who works with Moni. I am so happy for you guys. Please take advantage of all the help you have and don't feel bad about it. Enjoy your homecoming and may you all grow and prosper in the coming years.

Anonymous said...

Can't wait to hear that you are safely home!
Janet

Anonymous said...

How awesome! I will be praying and thinking of you six; we are all so excited to have you home :)
Love,
Crissy

Anonymous said...

Billy and Monica,

That is a great post and it really puts things into perspective on the kind of journey you have been on the last few months, and just to think that is only the beginning. I am very proud of the both of you on how well you have handled everything that has come your way - you two are some real troopers. As for the little rascals, they all look healthy and beautiful. I can't wait to see them, but I'm a little under the weather right now, so it might be a few days before I get to come visit. I think I can speak for everyone who checks this blog regularly when I say we can't thank you enough for keeping us updated and being so detailed on your posts to make us feel like we were down there in Phoenix with you. I know it takes a long time to post and you guys were so busy, so we really appreciate all the hard work the both of you put into keeping us updated. I pray that you have a safe flight home and I know I will be in contact with you soon when you get back into town. Thanks again for letting us be a part of your amazing journey.

Goertz

Anonymous said...

congradulations,,,,wishing you a safe journey,,,enjoy being home with the lil ones ,,, hopefully someone has been scheduled to come daily and allow you to update us with your wonderful pictures and great stories,,,lots of love from louisiana,,,

Anonymous said...

Hi there... don't know you guys but a friend turned me to your Blog. I've been reading for months now... and I just want to say congratulations on your blessings. They are amazing babies... you are amazing parents. And you have the best sense of humor around! Remember that when these kids get feisty... cause thats when you have to keep laughing.

Best wishes and I'll keep reading if you ever find the time to post! (and we understand if you don't!)

Karen said...

You probably won't be able to read this until you're back in the W, but here goes my cheesy-ass line anyways. Your post of many thanks made me want to cry - I'm so happy your family has made it through everything already, and I'm so excited you'll be back home in no time! You've really been through quite a journey, and honestly, it's only just begun! Your story is so touching, so close to home, and I'm proud to have you as friends. I can't wait to see you on Friday. Geez, you'll be local celebs. Hope you don't forget all the little people (and by little I mean the grown-ups who aren't famous, not the literal meaning). I'll call you tomorrow, and meet the newest Grafs! Everyone at Wesley last night was asking about you...so I'll have an awesome update when I head into work Friday evening! Love you, Karen

Stacey Faber said...

Hi all!
By the time you read this, you might be in Wichita! Yeah! We're so anxious to know that you have landed safely and arrived with your precious cargo. At the risk of sounding redundant, I want to thank you (although Brad already did it quite eloquently) for keeping us all in the loop over the course of your adventure. I know how time consuming it is and your time is definitely precious and hard to come by so your efforts to keep up the blog are greatly appreciated. The pictures and videos have been wonderful and your thorough and humorous dialogues have given us such great insight into each of the babies and their journey so far. You're very special to us and we're so happy to welcome you all back home. Hope to see you soon! Love ya! Stacey

Anonymous said...

Tiny little Danna looks afraid for her life (nervously chewing her nails) amidst those 3 brutes!

Have a great trip back, we'll be praying that all goes smoothly!
Hope to be able to see you and help out soon.

Maria

Sarah said...

Congratulations!!! There are tears in my eyes as I write this. Maybe I will run into you guys some where around town and be able to tell you "thank you" for being able to follow a beautiful family and there path home. My children and I treasured watching the little videos placed on your page. My 20 month old sits there and says "baby!" over and over. With four babies she is absolutely amazed. My 8 year old is amazed that a person can even have 4 babies. Thank you for bringing my children and I a little bit closer. God speed on your arrival home. The kids and I can't wait to see what you post next about the Graf Quad!!! Love from College Hill!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on finally being able to leave Phoenix with those adorable healthy babies. I am sure everyone is Wichita is axiously awaiting your return. Wish we were there to greet you and welcome all 6 of you home.
Love, Mary Ann & Fritz

Andria said...

Oh my gosh...Billy, that was SOME Valedictorian Speech!! Congrats on the scramble home. What a journey! What memories left in Phoenix, eh?

I look forward to the next chapter!

Anonymous said...

Ecstatic and Still overweight white guy in Florida said.............

HIP HIP HORRAY!!!!

There isn't much I can say that hasn't already been said in the comments before me.

I would like to thank you both for procreating and keeping our streak as "THE BEST DAMN LOOKING FAMILY ON THE PLANET" in tact.

Billy that is a wonderfull job of photoshopping the pic of Mark holding a baby. I almost believed it there for a second.

God Bless You All

Kelly said...

Best Wishes for a safe and uneventful trip HOME :) You guys are amazing. God Bless your sweet family.

Anonymous said...

Ahhhh, you guys give me too much credit. It was a sad day today. I cried as I was leaving the airport. I wanted so much to be on that plane with you. Can't wait to hear you got home safely so give me a quick ring when you get a chance. I'll miss all the action at the apartment but I'm so happy for you that you finally got to go home. This is my first time to comment but definitely not the last. Thanks again for the shout out, that picture is hilarious. I look like I'd been up all night with the babies. I have such great memories of Phoenix thanks to you guys, see you soon.
Love you
Becky

Anonymous said...

Dear Moni & Billy,
oh, really great news!!!
We are very happy, that everything developed so fine. Have a good trip home and a safe arrival.
The pictures are so lovely. Amazing how "tall" the boys are already. Finally my Mom finished knitting our Bavarian style baby shoes. I will mail them this weekend to Steph....
Take care & lot´s of hugs,
Tina and Maik

Kel Kel said...

YYYYYYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Love,
Kel Kel

Anonymous said...

The day I got to touch Danna in Phoenix is no longermy favorite day ever! Today is now because I finally got to hold all of those little farts! And yes, I do mean farts! They have some crazy gas for as angelic as they look!! I am so happy to have you home! I can't wait to watch them grow up (but hopefully slowly!!) and watch you two as the wonderful parents that you are! I had a blast today! And I can tell that Adam is already in love with those cuties as much as I am! I love you guys tons! See you tomorrow!!
Love, Auntie Lainie!!

Anonymous said...

My how the roles have reversed. I'm dying for a new post!!! I probably only checked the blog like 31 times today!! Thanks for your post Lainie, cause now I know they arrived safely.

Much love from the NIX
Becky

Anonymous said...

We are glad you all made it home safe. Now the fun begins where you enjoy the things that you can enjoy all the neat things that the babies will be learning to do. Enjoy them because they will grow up way to fast. It will be a very hectic but rewarding adventure. Just remember you have lots of friends and family that are willing to help you in any way that we can all you have to do is ask us.
Take Care
Love
Ross, Brenda, Jennifer and Brandon

Anonymous said...

Welcome home! Billy what QT are you going to be working at? Be sure and let us know if you guys make it in the paper or the news again! Andrea

Anonymous said...

WELCOME HOME!!!!

I am so happy for you and your family.......Wishing you much joy and happiness for ever and ever.

God Bless.

Linda

From Toni, Luke, && Caroline said...

We all can't wait to meet the little muchkins! Ha Ha! They look adorable, and Caroline is available for any baby-sitting!!


WE CAN'T WAIT TO SEE YOU ALL!

Anonymous said...

Ok, well, I have tried printing that adorable picture of all 4 of them off twice and Laine gets left out each time. I must be doing something wrong. They are soooooo cute. I am very happy all of you got to come home. I am sure that is a fantastic feeling, especially with everyone healthy. Congratulations! Can't wait to meet them someday! Beautiful, beautiful babies!
Debbie

Andy Bulger said...

Oh wow, I must be very emotional right now...the lump in my throat elevated to the air-suck-in sob. Anywho, it's definitely a good feeling cry and I just wish Andy and I could be there to see it all. We miss you guys sooo much!
But on a side note, you should really stop making all the fat (I'm gonna eat my brothers and sisters cuz I'm so hungry) jokes about Pius because that can really get into a kids head. I think he is just the perfect size...it's all his small and weeny brothers and sisters that make him look a bit overlarge.
We love you!
Auntie Em & Uncle Andy

mamasan_az said...

Congrats on the safe arrival home!!! Must be a relief to be home!

I sure miss you all already!!!! I keep automatically keep going into room 12 for report...but the Grafs have moved on to greener pastures.. i'm looking forward to keeping up on the latest hijinks of the Graf Kids!!!

Great Job Monica and Billy!!!

Anonymous said...

Always have their high chairs pointed west towards Envesco.

Loved your post. Love you all.

Uncle Elway, Aunt Julie, Cuz-Jo and Lo