We have a little toddler music class every other Thursday at the church where the twins will be attending preschool next year. At the end of class, I asked them if they wanted to go downstairs and peek at what will be their classroom next year.....they enthusiastically answered yes, and (loudly) headed towards the direction I was pointing. Cut to the part where we got to the doorway and looked in. Complete silence. As they stood in the doorway watching the kids eat their snack, I could almost hear their little brains clicking as they memorized everything. Both sets of eyes were moving all over the room as they studied what they saw......I didn't say much as we left, but later in Target, Sissy pointed out a xylophone and said, "Look, Mommy! They have one of those in my classroom!!" It's funny to me that she noted this.....she probably already has everything in that room categorized in her mind. Let's hope we are building some familiarity here....
Today marked a momentous occasion...I signed the twins up for preschool. Granted, it is only going to be Tuesdays and Thursdays next year, and only from 9 a.m. to noon, but it feels a little too much like "letting go" for me....I am WAY behind the curve on this one.....most of my friends that stay home with their kiddos have already had them in some sort of mothers day out program for quite a while. It's not that I have any problem with it (besides realizing they are getting older) but the cost of putting two babies in mother's day out was sort of a deterrent. What fun was having a morning "off" a week if I was too broke to enjoy it? Then Livi came along and there was all the excitement surrounding that...I wasn't going to pack up a tiny baby to take them and pick them up from school right after she was born.....So now we are finally signing up. For several reasons.
It's not like they don't have socialization....twins might actually get the lions share of this lesson. There is NO WAY a singleton has to put this skill into practice as much as my two do on a daily basis. They have to play, share, consider someone else way more than someone who plays alone.....but I didn't want them to become weird twins who would ONLY play with each other either. I want them to learn how to take turns, obey another adult besides our family members, have chances to meet other kids, do fun activities.....and partially, realize that their is a world outside their little safe world at home. It has to happen eventually after all. I was lucky to get spots number 10 and 11 in a 12 kiddo class this morning. After registering them, I asked the director if I could take a peek at what will be their room. Partially, to analyze the environment with my "teacher eye", but also so that I could report back all the fun things in the room (and hopefully build some excitement in the process). On the walls were the same sorts of things I used in my kindergarten rooms.....there were similar play areas and centers, and a little rug area to do a daily calendar. For some reason I had a tiny little urge to cry. It felt and looked too much like kindergarten....these are my BABIES after all. When did they get so big?? More than anything, I want them to be confident and love school so my prayer is that this turns out to be the beginning step in that direction. I'm not going to even START with the tiny panic attack I had while reading the parent handbook and the section about morning drop off. It reassured that crying and anxiety were normal, and they recommended not lingering....just saying "goodbye" and walking away. I'm not too sure who will have it worse in August....me or them!
I am trying out some new lenses for the camera....and WOW! I am in love!! I told Shawn this experience has been like riding your bike to work your whole life, and then someone gives you a Bentley. I took some new ones of the twins, who are so used to having their picture taken. They are excellent posers, when they feel like it. We had told them that AFTER picture taking, we would go to the park since it was so pretty outside....Hayden decided in the middle of picture taking that she didn't want to "play pictures" anymore. We could hear her in the backseat..."Mommy, no more picture taking. Did you hear me? Did you hear me??"
I'm a little tiny bit sad...coming to grips with the fact that this will probably be my last baby. (At least if I want to keep having babies with the same man...) I don't know why I am so melancholy about this. It's not like having another baby would make my life EASIER, after all. And I'm no saint about being pregnant either....I'm either holding back throw up or lumbering around complaining that my skeleton hurts. (There IS a honeymoon period in there in the middle somewhere...but I estimate that it lasts about six days.) I just love this little tiny one so much, and the idea of NOT making another human I love is sad. I am so excited about all the new things she is learning and doing, but I can't help but be a little depressed that it's going by so fast. I want to love on her all the time and drink it all in....her fat little baby tummy, her little tiny hands, her little toothless gums, the way her little neck smells. Sigh. I mean, you can't just keep having babies forever, right? That is, unless you want to get your own show on TLC, which I am not trying to do. I look at the twins and already can't remember what they were like at Livi's age....It's hard to recall what their little cries sounded like, or the faces they made....and it was only two years ago! So, during this season of my life, I choose to be grateful. I choose to find joy in these babies. Even when they talk back to me, or smell like pee. Even when they show no interest in using the toilet. Especially when they wake up all the time, or need me to feed them, because these things go away so fast....and before I know it they will all be gone. I will be joyful about this job of mine, because I know someday I am going to desperately want it back.
Yesterday Kelly came over for lunch....we were just hanging out at home having a "do nothing" day....when she got up to leave and tell us goodbye, the tiny one waved her little arm in the air like it was nothing. We kept telling her "BYE BYE" and she kept raising that little arm in the air again and again. I, of course, was captivated and awed by her brilliance, and tried to get her to recreate this little trickaroo for Mimi and Pope later that night. Nothing. She just stared at us like we were crazy. After about forty billion attempts to make her wave, I think I saw her fingers wiggle a little bit. Then finally, success!! She gave in and graced us with a few adorable "bye bye" waves...
In other big news, she also had her first real solid food yesterday....while I cooked she sat in the Bumbo and ate sweet potato puffs. They were a big hit! She only did the over dramatic fake gag once, so it went well! Our pedi said not to be scared by the gag reflex....it doesn't mean they are choking, just getting used to eating more solid foods. Of course, when Sissy woke up and saw the puffs on the counter, she had to have some, too. I wanted to save them for people who didn't have teeth, but what can you do? I'm always harping on the kid about sharing...I didn't think that being a sweet potato puff-holder was going to hammer that lesson home.
Liv's also sitting up by herself more and more. I always sit with her when she is practicing, because she still does the forward stage dive when she's had enough. She might be deterred in the self sitting department if she went down face first on the itchy rug!
I can't believe how big she seems now.....it seems like one day they are a cute little thing that can just eat and poop and then you blink and they are suddenly looking at you like they understand everything you are saying and are about to go away to college.
This morning we ventured out to the rodeo with the Zunker clan....the weather was MUCH warmer than expected, which just reminded me once again how ready I am for spring to get here! We got to check out some animals, sample some super healthy fair ground food, crawl all over some tractors, watch some horses getting ready for auction....both babies got a souvenir from the rodeo. Hayden's was a new purse and Cale wanted a "cowboy belt". We found a really cute one, and they hot stamped his name on it. It reminds me of the belts kids wore in 1978! Sissy asked to ride the merry go round, which we were excited about since she has NEVER wanted to ride it in the past. Right before the ride started, she very seriously said to me, "Mommy. I don't want to do it." but I told her it was too late to get off. After a tiny bit of panicking, she had a good time. We didn't see everything we wanted to see, so we are going to try to head back out again before it's over.
I love these people....even though photographing the three of them together is like having a root canal without novacaine. Even though Bubby starts every sentence now with "No..." or "Don't...." Even though Sis crawled in my lap this morning and told me "I don't want to smell you face." Even though the tiny one only seems to have one use for me.
Oh, how I love them!! Too much, sometimes.
This Valentine's Day, they are all the gift I need...the best thing my hubby ever gave me!
You know how you feel when you fit into your clothes but not REALLY fit into them? I can wear most everything (and for that I am thankful) but sometimes it hurts to sit cross legged. Now, I can't remember everything about kindergarten, but I do remember being able to sing my ABC's in a cross legged position without being in pain. There is a difference between "fitting" into your clothes and actually enjoying wearing clothes. In an effort to move closer to the latter, I have decided to be a non-sloth.
Day one started off well enough. I was out of bed by eight, which is basically six a.m. to me. With only the baby awake and looking at me expectantly, I was up and at ‘em. First challenge of the day: finding a sports bra. It’s been quite a while since I’d worn one, but I knew my mission was going to be a complete and utter failure without this critical piece of equipment. I mean, really....I’m still nursing a six month old....a sports bra alone might not be enough at this point. I might have to hunt down one of those black back braces that the guys wear who work on loading docks. With a generous amount of faith in the makers of modern undergarments, I wiggled myself into said bra, and busted out some exercise clothing that (no joke) still had the tags on. This fact is a little funnier when you realize this stuff was purchased by my husband after my FIRST pregnancy. (when I talked real big about starting to get back in shape.....I dabbled a little bit that time, but figured out an easy way out of that commitment: Get pregnant again! Problem solved!)
My expectations this morning were low. I decided I was going to do thirty minutes on the treadmill, at a tiny incline. I was going to walk four minutes and then run one until my time was up. The first five minutes were awesome.....I felt energized, alive! I’m not as bad off as I thought! I’ll be running the whole thirty in no time! The one minute run was E-A-S-Y....I foolishly thought, “I don’t need to run/walk....I think I can keep running....”, but with respect to my plan, I stuck to the Walk4/Run1 system. At about minute eight, I wonder who dumped a bucket of angry fire ants down my exercise pants. This was not your ordinary “runner’s itch”....but something much, much more pitiful. As I attempted to keep up my run/walk while I ferociously itched the fronts of my thighs, Livi managed to wiggle herself in my direction to see what the heck was going on. She stared up with incredulity at the crazy person next to her, trying to rip her own skin off (but not bail on the workout, thank you very much!) To make matters worse, the body part sqeezed into the sports bra started protesting as well. You know the sound a building makes right before it collapses onto itself? I think I heard that sound coming from my chest. I’m not sure what it meant, but I cut it short for this morning. My boobs hurt, and the baby on the floor had gone from amazement to irritation. Not what I had planned, but I am hopeful. Cardiovascularly (is that a word?) I felt good! I remember how much I like to feel my heart pumping hard.....now only if I can get my body parts on board. Workout total: 21 minutes. This isn’t going to be easy, but it’s doable.
Okay, so now I decided to go in a totally different direction. No flap to cover it, just a open bag. I have carried this one for a week, and I love it! I made six pockets for the inside that fit my cell phone, a bottle, a bottle of water, her diaper cream...it's a great size for carrying all the junk I need for THREE kids who still need diapers and the accessories that accompany "diapering". I appliqued an "H" on it for our last name, since EVERYONE still needs a diaper bag. This one will be super easy to throw in the wash when it gets dirty....The creation of this bag prompted the following comment from my mom..."Just exactly how many diaper bags do you need anyway?" I'm not sure what the correct answer is to that one.....
For those of you who were on the edge of your seats waiting for this information.....Liv's stats were as follows.
Her length (height? When can you start calling it height? I guess when they stand up instead of lay down like an adorable bag of smiley fat.) was in the 65th percentile.
Her head was still in the 95th percentile. We pride ourselves on growing humans with gigantic heads....if all else fails for them, we figure they can join a circus.
Her weight was fifteen pounds, two ounces.....which is in the THIRTY FIFTH PERCENTILE. Apparently I have been inadvertently starving my baby. The kindly doctor said he was concerned about the quantity of my milk supply and suggested supplementing with formula. She seems satisfied after feeding, so I always thought she was getting enough. Now I know that some babies don't fuss, but shut down when they are hungry.....although I can't say this baby ever seems to "shut down". She's always happy and alert and developing fine otherwise.... I am sad, sad, sad. Not that bottle feeding isn't easier, because I think it is. (i.e.: other people can feed the baby besides me) but I wanted to be able to nurse as long as I wanted. I didn't expect to be TOLD to start to ween her. For now, I am going to allow her one formula bottle a day, and drink like a fish (WATER, people!) to try and make more milk. Then I'm taking her to the big scale in Sugarplum Dreams next week to see what happens. Hopefully a little weight gain.
I think she looks totally healthy. I mean, those cheeks!! She almost needs a supportive back brace to hoist those things up. I never imagined she'd be underweight. Other than that, she checks out fine.
And on another note, her new trick is the "fake cough".....if we ask her if she has a bad cough, she makes the most pitiful coughing noise you've ever heard, and then smiles with satisfaction when everyone laughs. Smart girl!
As I continue on with my obsession with all things related to "holiday specific decorating", let me share with you my newest fave: Valentine's decorations! I do these things because: I feel like it and I think itlooks adorable my kids are entertained by it! This year, we are rockin':
The Valentine's Tree (a.k.a: some sticks from the yard tied together and adorned with salt dough ornaments I made and painted one day when it was too rainy, cold and disgusting to attempt to take three kids under three outdoors. This is SOOOO easy and fun, and bigger kids (i.e: kids bigger than mine) would love to do this as a project)
The Valentine's Angel (a ONE DOLLAR find from the Buck Pottery Second's Sale...she fell on the floor and broke into five pieces, but was resurrected by super glue and hung with a ribbon. For some extra Valentine's flava, I stuck a little red heart in her hand. So there.)
Heart Hanger for outside.....(made with heart board from the buck store, some hot pink paint, some stickers, a sheet of scrapbook paper and some Mod Podge. That's it!)
A ribbon wreath for our side door....(just a little something to do with the 4,364 rolls of ribbon I had in my craft dresser...now the ribbon drawer actually closes!)
and then ANOTHER sign I painted with chalkboard paint and stuck a cute ribbon through.....there were TONS of these little boards at the buck store one day, and I bought about four of them....wishing now I had purchased more, as I am thinking of all sorts of uses for them now....
Anyway, these little decorations are entertaining me, and distracting me from the depression I feel every time I look at the two Christmas wreaths laying on Sissy's floor, waiting for a "storage home"....