Woman gives birth to Britain’s first quads They are also two sets of identical twins who were born at a ratio of 10 million to one

With four little girls under the age of two, Sean and Lisa Kelly are expecting Christmas Day to be rather hectic.

But the couple intend to make the most of every moment.

Their quads – the firstborn in Britain to two sets of identical twins – are the children they thought they’d never have.

The two pairs, Hannah and Jessica, and Annabelle and Heidi, were conceived during a third attempt at IVF and, from two implanted embryos, were born with a probability of ten million to one on December 27.

I feel lucky every time I look at them,” said Ms Kelly, 36. But Christmas is particularly emotional: two years ago, I was pregnant and had no idea if they would survive.

Mrs. Kelly, of Billingham, Cleveland, who also has a ten-year-old son, Cameron, admits she has trouble telling the girls apart, relying on temperament and, in one case, a freckle to identify them.

Here, using all her tricks, she put them for a Christmas photo, from left to right: Annabelle, Hannah, Jessica, and Heidi.

Yet originally, Mrs. Kelly and her husband, 37, an electrical designer in Billingham, Cleveland, simply wanted a sibling for their son Cameron, now 10.

After failing a second time to conceive naturally, they spent £9,000 in savings on fertility treatment and were shocked when doctors told them they were expecting quadruplets.

Mrs Kelly says: “Two embryos had been placed back in my uterus, but everyone was stunned when both grew and became two sets of identical twins. Even the doctors couldn’t believe it”.

But their joy was dulled when the doctors explained that quadruplet pregnancies are very rare and potentially very dangerous.

Nevertheless, after a trouble-free pregnancy, the girls, born at 31.5 weeks, were in good health. Identical twins Heidi and Annabelle each weighed 3 Ib 3 oz, while identical twins Hannah and Jessica weighed 2 Ib 11 oz and 2 Ib 10 oz respectively.

Today, all the girls walk, talk and climb, and are developing their personalities.

Their mother explains: “Heidi is the most dominant and probably the meanest because she’s always doing something, while her twin, Annabelle, is very calm.

Two years ago, I was pregnant and had no idea if they would survive.
Sean and I can’t tell Jessica and Hannah apart just by looking at them – so Hannah, whose only difference is a freckle behind her left knee, wears a bracelet. Jessica is very lively and always on the move, while Hannah is more shy and loves to sit on my lap.

On a typical day, their mother, who balances her part-time job with her husband’s, uses 20 diapers, two packs of wet wipes, eight pints of milk, two pounds of potatoes, four loads of laundry, and several hours of tumble-drying.

We’re on our second washing machine and dryer in less than two years. And I do my shopping every other day – my bill comes to around £200 a week.”

A normal day in the Kelly household begins around 5:30 am when the girls – who each share a room with their twin in the family’s four-bed detached house – wake up.

Mrs Kelly explains: “Sean and I give them their bottle. An hour later, we set up four high chairs and gave them each their bowl of cereal. Then we go upstairs to dress them – which can be quite difficult with four wriggling toddlers.

The couple prepares all the family’s meals from scratch. She explains, “It would be easy to give them fish fingers and chicken nuggets, but we manage by cooking in bulk. Sometimes we make several shepherd’s pies at once and freeze them.”

She also manages their wardrobes by buying identical outfits – although buying the same thing for four children means that a dress, cardigan, tights, and shoes for each of them often tops £150 per store.

She explains: “I’m very proud to see them all dressed the same. But most of the time, it’s much easier to go to the park if they’re all dressed the same. For example, they’re all wearing bright pink coats with ducks on them, and when I gather them up, I just have to look for the bright pink toddlers. Needless to say, I try to avoid buying clothes that need ironing…

The family also has a quad stroller with two seats in two rows from America, which fits roughly into their Espace car.

She adds, “We take the girls on vacation – this year we went to Centre Parcs, but we always travel at night, as the girls can be quite noisy and it’s much more peaceful when they’re all asleep.”

In the evenings, baths are taken by two and the girls go to bed at around 6.45 pm. Sean and I often don’t eat until 9.30 pm,” she sighs, “which is tiring because we’re also very busy with Cameron, who takes her to friends’ houses and after-school activities.

But despite that, we love having a big family. And it’s enough for me to see the girls asleep in their cribs and looking like little angels to forget the busiest and most difficult days.

Source: dailymail

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