Triplets born on the Queen’s 90th birthday have celebrated turning one.
A special party was held in Middleton on Saturday for William, Pollyanna and Penelope.
The trio featured extensively in the Observer when they were born early on April 21, 2016.
Exactly a year on their busy parents, Rachel Ballard and Kris Moyse, have spoken about their unique first year as a family of seven.
“The birth was a total whirlwind and some days it still feels like that,” said fitness instructor Kris, 29.
“It’s still sometimes a shock looking across the room filled with love but also terror, thinking about three sets of driving lessons, three sets of uni fees all coming at the same time, thinking Daddy has to be a millionaire.”
The couple, who live with Rachel’s boys Harrison, ten, and Jacob, eight, in Middleton, say everything they do has to be thoroughly planned.
At one stage they say they were going through around 260 nappies a week.
Rachel said: “I do two loads of washing a day, it’s ridiculous. We had to update our car and get a special buggy from abroad.
“Their first year has gone really quickly but at the same time it feels like they’ve been with us forever.
“Everyone asks ‘is it a lot harder’ but it’s more that everything just takes longer, changing nappies, feeding, leaving the house.”
Kris added: “When we’re out we get stopped every two seconds, so many people still say ‘are these the triplets in the Observer?’.”
If one of the babies gets sick, invariably they all do, like on Christmas Day when all three had bronchiolitis.
“Their characters are so different,” Rachel, 31, said. “William is quite shy and coy and a little sweetheart. Penny is quite impatient while Polly is the easy going one.”
All three are healthy and, Rachel says thankfully, not yet crawling or walking.
They were born at 32 weeks at St Richard’s Hospital – the first natural triplets staff could remember - despite there being no history on triplets in either family, said to be 1/9,000 odds.
After the birth, Penny needed intensive care treatment and a blood transfusion after she stopped breathing.
“That was definitely the hardest part, those were dark days and hand on heart we honestly thought we would lose Penny, Kris said.
“To see her now, eating more than her brother and sister is incredible.
“People ask ‘how do you cope’ but you just do, you have to have a routine in place and just crack on.”
Both say they have ‘amazing’ support from nearby family to help them manage.
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