Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Haven't you heard???

Summer is the "new" winter! Well it has been in our house :) Yes, the boys are sick again. We got a restful few weeks and now it is all back! We did manage to squeeze in a good weekend though. The boys got to go where few men have gone before them...."the Girls luncheon". In Jared's family "the girls" (Great Grandma, Grandma, Aunt Kim, Mommy, Aunt Linda and Amanda) typically go out to lunch for our birthdays and this time it was Linda's. Happy Birthday Linda! Due to Jared's playoff games the boys joined me in what would be a lovely day. We also stopped to check out Daddy's games and they enjoyed the scorching, yet beautiful, sunny weather. Sunday we attended church which is always SO good for the soul (literally) and they loved playing in the nursery. Sunday afternoon after nap we headed to the petting farm and I know this will shock some but I actually forgot my camera...gasp! I forgot it for Linda's Birthday celebration too. I am definitely slipping :) Eli was eager to hop into the pen with the animals but couldn't because Mommy had him wear his crocs and apparently this is not appropriate pig pen attire. Who knew that there was a farm version of "black tie"? He did thoroughly enjoy petting them though. Alex would act as if he wanted to touch them but when he got close enough he recoiled quickly. :) He would have been fine had we stayed there are bit longer and he could have witnessed the animal's response to other patrons. He is very careful and has to study these things and I love that about him. Sunday evening brought the all night crankies and it has rolled through until today. Poor babies but they will be feeling better soon I am sure. So there's our weekend recap on Wednesday. I am SO on top of things!

Here are my sick babies kicking back and watching "Sesame Street".
They look so grown up, don't they? :(

Friday, August 22, 2008

Score 1 for Mom!

I'm actually kind of on a roll lately because the boys are officially down to one nap AND last night I found the solution to the bib wars. The boys constantly take their bibs off and I have to put them back on. When they take them off all of the food in the pocket usually goes flying and it is very messy and more importantly it is annoying. So last night while grocery shopping I "splurged" and got two of the greatest bibs ever. First of all I do realize that it is sad that my splurges were on bibs but that's motherhood. Even Jared said it was my most boring "splurge" thus far. Anyways they have a pocket and the most important feature is that they SNAP not velcro. YES!!!! So here is my victory in photos. Just don't ask me about the weaning from bottles or pacifier issues. That is for another day (far, far, from now).

A: "Is she kidding with this thing?" E: "I sincerely hope so."

A: "I think she's got us with this one. It won't budge." E: "Say it ain't so!"

E: "Give her the pleading eyes, the pleading eyes!"

E: "Ooh ooh, the toothy grin........

nothin', I got nothin'."

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Me and My Baby Brother

I believe that in this picture my son was having an "I wish I were an only child" moment. I too remember having moments like these as do my sisters but for the most part I am sure that Alex and Eli will appreciate their bond as they get older as we all appreciate our's. I have to add these pics to their memoirs though because they display his "moment" brilliantly.

Alex playing contentedly with his letters.

Eli joining in on the "fun".

This picture needs no explanation ;)

"What? I am innocent! I only added this picture to show Eli's new "camera smile".

Yikes!!! It is very "Chandler Bing" of him isn't it?

The Results are in!

We had our developmental assessment today and it went beautifully, so beautifully, in fact, that we are officially discharged from their clinic. Both boys graduated!!! YAY! We are so amazed at their progress and the speech therapist was particularly impressed with their speech. The PT informed us that we need to encourage Alex to sit with his legs out in front of him instead of tucked behind like he always does. We will work on this and if he continues to revert to this method of sitting they will want to do further therapy with him but only if it affects his walking and other developmental milestones which doesn't seem likely based upon his progress. It is just so thrilling that these sweet boys are coming out of their "preemiehood" relatively unscathed. We also visited our NICU and thoroughly enjoyed showing them our healthy boys. It was a great day. Oh and last night we got the boys fish or "shish" as Alex prefers to call them. He thoroughly enjoyed watching them and as the fish swim around the boys walk along the tank with them. This was Jared's idea and I have to admit it was genius. We can now add "visiting the fishies" to our daily activities :)

Monday, August 18, 2008

16 months old!

Another month has gone by Alex and Eli and you are doing a million new things.

Alex you
  • Say Hi, Bye-Bye, Baby, Mama and Da-da.

  • Love for daddy to show you all the pictures in the hallway and he lets you turn the light on and off.

  • You love to be sung to. Your face lights up when you hear "The Itsy Bitsy Spider", "Pat-a-cake", or "I love you a bushel and a peck".

  • Have learned to lift your arms to us when you want up instead of screaming :) Thank Goodness.

  • Typically don't stop doing whatever we are saying "NO" to you about until we come towards you which leads to a scramble to get down. It's very cute to watch and we struggle not to laugh at you.

  • LOVE books and hand them to us all the time. Today you handed one to me at least 6 times in a row and I kept reading it just to see if you'd keep picking it up and handing it to me. This continued until it was time for breakfast.

  • Hug us now and it melts Mommy and Daddy's hearts of course.

  • You are our sleeper and if you don't get the right amount we ALL know it. (Sorry bubby, you got this one from Mama). You also fall asleep almost every time we get into the car.

  • You are VERY stubborn and I have to tell you to lay still while I change your diaper about a million times and you still protest. The stubbornness comes from Daddy and Mommy so I guess we kind of deserve it :)
  • Light up my day with your smile

  • Love to have your teeth brushed and have 6 of them currently.

  • have been in the "Daddy Zone" lately which is really cute.

  • sang with Grandma and Grandpa a couple of weeks ago and made us all tear up.

  • Rock back and forth to music.

Eli you

  • are obsessed with closing doors behind you. I typically follow you and recently you were just sitting in your room reading with the door closed. It was very "adult" of you.

  • have been closing these doors ON your brother. As in he is standing in between a gate and the door that you are crushing him with. We are definitely working on that one with you. Poor Alex is hoping we succeed SOON!

  • Have a very toothy smile that is adorable. You have 4 teeth and love having them brushed also. Unfortunately for Mama you like to bite down while my finger is still in your mouth while I brush your teeth.

  • have a fake cry that is very funny looking and you started doing a new "camera smile" that is equally funny.

  • are a morning person and are always the first one up around here.

  • are a comedian of sorts and like to make funny faces at us so that we laugh.

  • still enjoy your bottle and cry when it ends no matter how much you've just eaten.

  • have recently converted and become somewhat of a mama's boy which I am enjoying :)

  • are like your dad in SO many ways. You've even begun to use your blanket like a cocoon much like Daddy.

  • say Hi, bye, up (utt), what (as in I call your name and you answer "what?"), Mama, Daddy (dah-tee), Alli, Why?

  • You have begun to sing.

  • Love the opening song to the Backyardigans and get the HUGEST grin on your face when it starts. You also enjoy pat-a-cake and itsy, bitsy spider.

  • wake and cry every once in a while at night and I LOVE getting a quiet chance to rock you and as I feel the weight of you on my chest I thank God for that moment.

I love you guys and look forward to seeing what next month brings. Who knows it may bring Mommy actually doing your monthly update on the correct day instead of having to backdate it. (oops, did I just admit that ???)

Muddy Monday


Oh, it is definitely a Monday around here. I am not a "dread Monday" kind of person but today has been textbook "Monday". I got the boys dressed this morning and after having breakfast and playing inside a bit we headed to the great outdoors (our suburban backyard is probably the more appropriate term). I put the boys in their swings and began watering the flowers. I had the grand idea of filling up the pool also so that it could warm up and they could get into it after their nap. I got the boys out of their swing and as I'd suspected they decided to get into the pool in their clothes and I figured "what the heck?". It went a bit downhill when they crawled through the dirt following their dip in the pool which made for some pretty muddied little boys. No big deal, boys will be boys. I took them in bathed them and put in a video so that I could start lunch and pre-soak their outfits. I did accomplish all these things and got them down for a nap. At this point I ran the basket of laundry downstairs and discovered, as I was separating them, that the clothes were dripping with laundry detergent that I'd used to soak their shorts in. Oh well, I was washing them anyways no big deal. I washed and organized the basement a bit only to run upstairs and realize that I had trailed detergent all over the upstairs. I cleaned this up. I went into my bedroom at this point and realized I'd set the laundry basket down on the bed and detergent had soaked through my quilt, comforter, sheets, and down mattress topper. Free time, during the boys nap??? What's that???? Ugh, I guess I know what I will be doing the rest of the day. Washing, washing, washing and oh yeah washing. I write this so that someday when the boys are older and I am busy and I think for a split second "What did I do the whole time they napped when they were that age?" I will be reminded that each day came with a whole new challenge with which to fill my time :)


(oh, did I fail to mention that Alex didn't want to come inside?)

Sunday, August 17, 2008

They've Taken Over!

It is official. The boys own the house. Jared and I are trying to purchase some toys that will help the boys exude their energy over the long Michigan winter. The NICU urges parent of preemies with lung issues to be cautious for their first two winters so we plan to make some sort of play room for them in the basement. Today we picked this up and decided to put it together in the living room. The boys loved it but we have to laugh at the fact that the house is no longer our's.

These pictures don't really do justice for the size of this shark.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Flashback Friday~My Little Readers

8/10/08 (15 1/2 months old)

6/12/08 (almost 14 months old)

12/16/07 (8 months old)

10/6/07 (5 1/2 months old)

I've read to Alex and Eli since they have been home from the hospital and I love that they both thoroughly enjoy being read to and that they love to just sit and "read" books by themselves. Alex's favorite is "Hands, Hands, Fingers, Thumb" and he has loved to repeat the "dum ditty, dum ditty, dum, dum, dum" part for months now. I think Eli leans towards "I Love You Through and Through" as his favorite but this doesn't stop him from stealing Alex's favorite book and making a "run" for it. The boys are catching on to the "who had it first?" rule and Alex crawled around carrying his book for about a 1/2 an hour a few weeks ago. It was so funny because you could tell he was not about to let Eli gain control over his prized possession. The funny thing is, much like when Eli steals his brothers paci, he is interested in it for all of 5 seconds and then he moves on to other things.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Countdown Begins

We received the forms for the boy's developmental assessment yesterday which always kind of throws me into a mini-frenzy. I start thinking should I have been working on that with him?? Oh the mommy guilt, does it ever end? So the questionairre was as follows:

Does your child: (My answers are in italics)
  • Scribble when given a crayon? Do people give 15 month old twin boys crayons?? Oops, rookie mistake I guess.
  • Throw a ball? Yes, although sometimes they move their arm as if they are going to throw it and don't let go which is quite comical.
  • Walk holding on to furniture? YES, I am on a roll!
  • Walk independently? Nope
  • Crawl up stairs? Yes
  • Help in dressing? Again, should I be expecting this. I would love to hand them their clothes and say "have at it" but I wasn't sure how it would go. OOH and does it count as "helping" if they try and grab their poop filled diaper and fling it while you are changing them? If so YES they have been "helping" a lot lately.
  • Turn pages in a book? Yes and if I am holding them both while reading the book (which is 90% of the time) this becomes a bit of a battle and has resulted in many a bent or torn page).
  • Imitate stirring with a spoon? Honestly, I have NO idea but I will of course see whether or not they do before August 20th.
  • Say "mama" or "dada" meaningfully? Yes, I believe they say it with as much "meaning" as they can muster :)
  • Understand simple questions? Umm, how simple are we talking? I think so... o.k. honestly I have no idea. What kind of parent am I???
  • How many words does your child say without coaching? 3 errr 4 ish (did I hear a niner in there) but uncoached hmm not sure.
  • How many body parts does your child know? OK at this point just belly but we have really been working on it.
  • Any comments or concerns? I didn't think so but now that I have read this survey should I have concerns?????
So in an attempt to act as if I know the answers to the above questions by their assessment on the 20th I managed to find some crayons and see whether or not they do, in fact, scribble when handed one. Here are the results.......drumroll please!
We use it as a phone and have very animated conversations. (ooh maybe extra points for creativitely using your imagination!)

We ponder life and decide we should try and eat these things.

and YES, YES, we actually do scribble when handed a crayon. Who knew???

I am looking forward to getting the fatter crayons for their age group and letting them color more often. I should also mention that Jared and I look forward to going to each developmental assessment. It is not really a scary test. I am truly joking about that. The boys are doing wonderfully and we are thrilled with their development. You are awesome Alex and Eli and Mommy and Daddy are SO proud of our little artists :)

Monday, August 11, 2008

Another Adventure with Twoddlers

This weekend was nice. It was very mellow and normal. Don't you just love that word normal? The boys were sick for much of July and so normal is a beautiful thing. We went to Daddy's softball game on Saturday and the boys played in their baby prison (aka Play Yard). After the first game the sky turned dark and opened up and poured on us. Thankfully every one helped us get the boys, their toys, their snacks, the stroller AND the play yard under the shelter quickly. It was quite an accomplishment. The reason I mention it is because the boys absolutely loved the storm. The wind was blowing so hard that even under the shelter we were getting misted and they thought it was magnificent. It was really cute and I love experiencing these new things with them.

Yesterday we attended church for the first time in a month and the boys enjoyed some time with Grandma Dolores and Grandpa Jon in the nursery. The told us the boys were perfect, of course. I am pretty sure that even if their heads had spun and green vomit had been spewed out exorcist style they would have told us they were good but either way I am glad the boys enjoyed themselves and got to socialize with others a bit after the isolation that they have been experiencing.

Today Mindy, Alex, Eli, Alli and I went to Macy's Day at Greenfield Village. It was nice and there were some extras for the kids. One of these special extras was a train ride around the village. I was a bit nervous but after the month we've had I just wanted to do something "normal" (there's that word again). I have these moments of pure bravery where I don my cape and become supermom. I thought twins shhmins I am going to take them on this train ride. I can do it. How hard can it be??? I began questioning my decision as we got into line and parked our strollers at one end of the gate and had to walk away from them to get into line. Ummm, my children don't walk yet and I am waiting in a long line holding a 25lb baby in one arm, an almost 21lb baby in the other with a mammoth diaper bag slung across my shoulder. I did have my sister Mindy who is pregnant, with 14 month old in tow AND her own diaper bag there also. It didn't start off too badly. O.K. Eli crawled away once when I decided to give them some freedom and stand up holding onto the gate while we waited but other than that no major issues.

This false sense of confidence overtook me again and I decided to board the train. First of all there are not many empty seats but we manage to find one before I drop a squirming child. (Contrary to what you may think people are not quick to get out of your way arms full o' baby or not.) Mindy was behind me with Alli and I had one boy in each arm. Confidence is now gone and I wonder if as the conductor has the entire train yell "All Aboard" I should scream out "WAIT, I am and idiot who thought she could do this and I can't and I NEED OFF"!!! Alas, I chickened out and sat their grimacing and convincing myself we would be fine. I am pretty sure this is when the conductor chimed in and said "we will be taking a ride around the village and it will take approximately 35 minutes". Are you kidding me? I could walk around the village in 35 minutes. Crank this bad boy up and lets haul some butt!!! Well the boys squirmed and wanted down and wanted up and wanted down and wanted to sit by themselves and wanted to take off their shoes. We did lose 3 of our 4 shoes and retrieved them all by the end of our ride. I didn't care if they'd lost all of their clothes as long as their limbs were in tact by the end of the ride but a nice elderly gentlemen came after me with a shoe wondering if it was the crazyladywhothoughtshecouldtaketwintoddlersonatrainbyherself's shoe, and shock of all shocks, it was indeed.

We decided to get off at the first possible stop which by the way would leave us strollerless with 3 non-walking toddlers at the other end of the entire village. My brilliant sister, however, offered to walk back and get the strollers while I watched the 3 kids. (Now you know why I said she was the brilliant one. She always did have this knack of talking me into doing the hard part without me realizing it. We won't get into that right now though). So after her leisurely stroll by HERSELF (just kidding, Mindy) we headed back towards the exit stopping only for some of the yummiest, frozen custard on the planet. We actually did have a great time but I will never attempt the train ride again without Jared. So that's our weekend in a nutshell.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Flashback Friday 8/07 (almost 4 months old)

Once we were home from the hospital. It was like they missed each other :)

These photos will always be special to me. As I was looking back through my pictures deciding which to choose for my flashback I remembered this day vividly. Eli was still on oxygen (obviously) and the supply company had just come and refilled the great green pickle (aka HUGE oxygen tank in his bedroom). Apparently when he tipped the tank the hoses filled up with water. I did not know this when I put the tube into Eli's nose and taped it up before his nap. This particular day for the first time ever I chose to lay them on my bed for their nap. I went and turned on the tank and left the room. I then, for reasons I still cannot explain other than God led me to, returned to my room where Eli was blue and water was running out of his nose and mouth. Even talking about it now is difficult and I am pretty sure I will never be able to erase that picture from my mind's eye. I realized it was coming from the tubes and ripped them off of his face and began beating on his back. Thankfully he began to choke out the water and I called 911 and told them my infant son had not been breathing. The police were here in minutes and in the mean time I called Jared and began to hyperventilate. My husband is so good at calming me down though. He raced home and I went to the hospital with Eli who suffered NO ill effects from this incident.

Rarely a day goes by that I don't thank God for my children. I am not sure if every parent does this or if it is a gift that was given to us by God. I am so grateful that I have this deep appreciation for my children due to what we have been through. I would never wish it upon anyone else but oh the joy that comes from their every breath, every smile, every word, every cry. Somewhere in the midst of the chaos of those moments I remember thinking "oh no, that is why I took all those pictures on the bed today, they were his last"....but they weren't and I have since taken a million more and someday when he is a teenager he will roll his big beautiful eyes as I continue to make him pose for yet another picture. Thank you, Lord!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Wordless Wednesday Again

If I were speaking on this "Wordless Wednesday" I would say it is not off to the greatest start. The window company set to install our window after a 7 wk. wait called and cancelled a 1/2 hour before they should have been here (after we had taken down the wood blinds, curtains, hardware, and moved all of the boys toys out of the front room) and Alex stuck his entire foot into the big bowl of yogurt that I was feeding him. I still am not sure how that happened but what a lovely mess. Good thing I am not mentioning any of that on this Wednesday :) Have a great day!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Signs of Summer

Jared and I went to the farmer's market yesterday and picked up some corn on the cob (among other things) for the boys to enjoy. They LOVED it! We are not surprised that they literally ate it up because it seems to run in Jared's family. Teddy has been know to throw down more than a few ears of corn in a single sitting :) I must give credit to Mindy. She told me that Alli loved eating it this way also or else I probably wouldn't have thought to try it. I have to say it is much easier to clean up than those messy biter biscuits that turn into cement on the boy's faces and hands and it still occupies as much of their time.

We also picked up this new toy for the refrigerator that keeps the boys busy when we do dishes, cook, or whatever else needs to be done in the kitchen. It teaches them letters, the sound each letter makes and the alphabet song. Alex does well with putting the letter into the proper place. The first one he put in was the letter Q and it sang the "the Q says kwa the Q says kwa all the letters make a sound the Q says kwa". Eli shocked Jared and I by repeating "kwa". Very funny. I love the toy so far. They also love to throw all of the letters on the floor so I am hoping that we don't lose any. Oh and I don't want to forget while we are talking about my verbal little guys Eli also said Alex this week. He prounounces is AHH-EX! I am truly thankful for their progress. Having former-preemies I definitely don't take anything regarding their development for granted. We actually have a developmental assessment coming up so I am hoping all goes well.

It amuses me in this picture how it looks as though they are graciously taking turns. This is not the case. They are definitely beginning to have some knock down-drag out's over toys.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Flashback Friday 9/21/07 (5 months old)

Eli peacefully sleeping. Oh how I miss it.

Alex not throwing a tantrum. Ahhhh!

So happy together!!!

This is from yesterday.
I love that I captured Eli laughing at his brother. I love these moments and once I get this nap thing under control I think we will all be a bit happier. Today it worked for Eli to take one and Alex two. This means not much peace and quiet but I do get to spend one on one time with each of them and maybe that is what they are needing. Jared is watching the boys tonight so that I can go out so that is VERY exciting and VERY necessary.