Nfld. & Labrador

Newborn triplets and a toddler? Life gets busier for Burin family

A family from the Burin Peninsula headed home last week, along with their newborn triplet boys. Now, they're facing the challenges of managing a household with three newborns and a toddler.

Mom says organization will be key in home with 4 boys under 4

It may take some getting used to, but three-year-old Parker is warming up to the idea of his three new baby brothers, after his parents brought the babies home to Burin last week. (CBC)

A family from the Burin Peninsula headed home last week, along with their newborn triplet boys. Now, they're facing the challenges of managing a household with three newborns and a toddler.

All I could think then was, my God, I hope there's no more than three there.- Leslie Oake, father of triplets

Jody Howse give birth to the triplets on Dec. 13, a day that was already special to the family because it was their first son Parker's birthday.

When Howse and her partner Leslie Oake arrived home with the babies on Thursday, Parker wasn't exactly pleased to see them — more like in a state of shock.

Oake said he can remember feeling the exact same way when Howse first told him the couple would be welcoming triplets.
Leslie Oake says he was surprised when his partner told him she was expecting triplets, and family life at home will certainly be different. (CBC)

"She said, 'Our kids are OK,' and I said, 'It's two, isn't it?' she said, 'No, I think you better look at something.' She pulled an ultrasound picture out of her purse and laid it on the bonnet of the car. She said there's three there, and I was just kind of dumbfounded," said Oake.

Seeing the babies on the ultrasound was one thing, but Oake said seeing them come into the world in full, screaming colour was a reality check.

"It really hadn't sunk in until they started passing out one baby, and then two minutes after another baby, and then two minutes after another baby — and all I could think then was, my God, I hope there's no more than three there," he said.

Babies Wyatt and Ryder are identical, but Ryder has a birthmark that helps the parents tell them apart. It's a bit easier to identify Zachary, with his shock of blonde hair.

Organization is key

The odds of having triplets are over 8,000 to one; the odds of having triplets on the same birthday as an older sibling? Off the charts.

Howse said the family will try to keep the quadruple birthday simple, but it's bound to be busy.

"It's going to be one big party. With every kid on the Burin Peninsula, I would imagine," she said.
Jody Howse says adjusting to family life with a toddler and three infants will be a challenge, but says organization is the key to getting everything done. (CBC)

While it's bound to be hard work again for the mother of four, since Oake returns to work later this week, Howse said she's figured out a system to keep things as easy as possible.

"The way the cribs are set up is a crib, a change table and a crib. So put three dirty babies in one [crib], change them, and put three clean babies in the other [crib] — that's my plan," she said.

"I have to be organized, or this will never work."

The couple said their life will get more complicated, dealing with the needs of a toddler and triplets all at once, but they said they've already received lots of support from friends, family as well as the entire community.

With files from Martine Blue

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