Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Hump Day: Learning to Take Turns

King of the rocking chair!

Please, Nathaniel?

Help, mama!


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Growing Up

My little nursling has weaned.My nursing days are over for now. With the trip to Grandma and Grandpas, and back-to-back illnesses I knew that there wasn't much left of a supply.
I also knew that our days were numbered when morning milk/snuggle sessions only lasted a few minutes.
The last time he nursed was a week ago when we were all sick with the flu. He nursed and then we napped, and then he apparently decided he was done... for good. That was the end of that chapter in our lives.
He has not requested anymore from me.

Nat lasted until 10 months when he decided he was through. I, being the "gotta keep it all equal with my twins" paranoid mom, pumped milk for Nat until they were established on whole milk.
Gabe nursed for almost 15 months.
I am proud of myself. Proud that I accomplished this goal.
I wanted to nurse my children until they were ready to be done. I just hoped that they would be done before they started school!
When the boys were wee little ones I wanted to give up so many times. It was so difficult, so emotionally and physically draining. Joel kept encouraging me to continue. I wanted so badly to quit, but he kept telling me not to give up. He knew that I would have regretted it down the road. I would have been disappointed in myself. I would have let my anxiety get the best of me. When there is a challenge set before me, I tend to run. I knew he was right. As much as I wanted to yell at him and tell him how hard it was, I knew he was telling me what I wanted to hear.

Somehow I made it. Armed with my trusty double electric pump, homemade hands-free pump bras, and a twin nursing pillow, we did it.
I hugged that breast pump before I packed it up and put it in the closet. No lie.

I'm giving extra cuddles these days to make up for our special time together.
I'm enjoying the surprise hugs from behind from both boys. We're giving lots of kisses, completed with big "Muuahh!" sound effects.
The new game is to point at every object in the room and ask "Uh Dah?"(Translation: What's that?)
We're enjoying life. Enjoying all that growing up brings with it.

On a side note.
We had a successful sleepover. Yes, he is grasping a book in his sleep. I can't tell you how many time I catch them sneaking off to the nursery to quietly look at books these days. They are going to be "readers" just like mama and daddy.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Baby, It's Cold Outside

These temps have me shivering even while inside layered in clothes, snuggling under blankets.
The end of January, February, and March are always so hard. The magic of winter is gone, yet Spring is still so far away. We are feeling very cooped up with the bitter cold temperature outdoors.
We ventured out to the store yesterday for some diapers, and coffee. (The most important things around here). My poor little guys were whimpering in the blustery wind while I fumbled with the stroller straps. I promised them that we would stay home until it warmed up a little.
Gabe and Nat's new word is "snow." We constantly look out the windows and talk about all the white snow on the ground. It's wonderful to see their eyes light up when the snow is falling from the sky.
We were able to venture out earlier this week for a playdate at our friend C's house. Auntie Ashley and Harper were there, as well C's twins cousins.
2 sets of sisters and 6 kids under 2.
It was fun chatting with another mom with twins. Especially since her twins are only 2 weeks older than Gabe and Nat.
The kids all seemed to love it.
I can tell you that I am really looking forward to ECFE classes starting up again in a few weeks. The walls in this house are really starting to close in around me.
Lucky for me, my husband asked me out on a date! Tomorrow night, my parents will be watching the children while we head out to dinner and a party with his coworkers.
Sadly, I think it's been 5 months since we had a proper date-night. We are long overdue


Monday, January 17, 2011

Early Mornings

It's not even 7 am and we have been awake for almost 3 hours, yes, 3.
That would be a 4 am wake-up, folks.
It's cringe worthy.
I'm thinking it's the coughing that woke them up. I'll be heading to the store this morning for some Honey Elixir.
I'm downing coffee right now like it's going out of style.
These wake times have me counting down the days to the time change in March. At least 6 am won't seem as bad as 5am.

We've been having nightly warm baths lately. While we usually do every-other day scrubbings in the winter to avoid drying out delicate skin, we've taken to nightly ones to help loosen up tight chests and clean out stuffy noses.

I'm quite sure they love it. Bath time is one of their very favorite activities.
Gabe managed to jump into the tub fully clothed a few weeks back. No worries, I was just outside the bathroom door with Nathaniel. I did have to attempt to teach him that we must wait for mama or daddy before hopping into the tub.

A mother's job is never done, so I must be off to prepare the little ones some breakfast.
Hoping for a longer night sleep tonight.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A Sleepover

Gabe and Nat made their first attempt at a sleepover. It didn't go so well.

We had just finished reading a small stack of books and they indicated that they were ready for a nap. Instead of walking over to his own crib and putting his hands in the air, like a sort of "Lift me up, mama." Nat walked over to Gabe's crib, Gabe followed, and the asked to get in.
I thought "Why not? You are the ones wanting to try it." I'm sure there will come a day when I find you both cuddled in one bed. We might as well try it in a crib."

So I scooped them up. Got them all snuggled next to one another. Gave them their nuks, their stuffed animals and covered them with their blankies. They were both giddy, but Nat quickly rolled over and attempted to sleep. I kissed them and left the room. Not two minutes later the screaming started. I gave it a minute, thinking that they might get it figured out on their own. When the yelling didn't stop I checked on them.
There was Gabe sprawled out, face up and spread eagle, on top of poor little Nat. Both nuks and blankies were on the floor. Apparently while Nat was hoping for some snuggle time, Gabe was looking for a full-out wrestling match.
I put them in their own cribs, gave hugs and kisses and told the boys that they can try a sleepover when they are a little bit older.

They're both sleeping like angels.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


We've been hit.
The Flu.

Yes, almost every person in this home has managed to get the stomach flu.
It started with Nat on Sunday. I, being the super quick thinking mama, took 3 occasions of him puking to actually realize that he was sick.
Big Duh.
Sunday overnight was a struggle. He was vomiting a good portion of the night. I alternated between changing sheets, and changing runny diapers. Sometime around 2am, he crashed.
Both of the boys were crabby and fussy on Monday. I was feeling like I was getting sick. They screamed. So I brought them to bed with us. We were vomited on, a few times. Then I got sick.
I would race to the bathroom to be sick while the boys would scream "mama!" It went on for hours.
We were all finally settled, bellies emptied of contents, around midnight. Joel and I split up, each taking a kid with us. Him in the nursery with Nat. Me in our room with Gabe. We got a solid four hours of sleep.
The boys lounged with me in bed the next day. I threw my typical rules out the window and actually let them stare at PBS kids shows while we slept on and off throughout the day.
Joel, the amazing husband and father that he is, did loads of puke stained laundry and ran errands to pick up Pedialyte and Gatorade.
My not-so-nice husband picked at me for being a "cry baby" when I'm sick. I kindly reminded him that the stomach flu is no laughing matter and that he should be careful because he would likely get it. He laughed and made some comment about how he never gets sick.
It is now Wednesday. Gabe, Nat and I are feeling quite a bit better.
Joel has been sick all day.
He's in bed, with 2 layers on. Under 2 blankets and a down comforter with 2 pillows covering his head.
I asked him how he was feeling earlier. His response was faint,since it's coming from under 2 pillows "I feel like dying."
I asked if he needed anything.
"I need you to kill me now."
We're hoping to get back to normal tomorrow. Naps are still a little longer, and bedtime is still a little earlier.
I think we'll be caught up on laundry in a week or two.

Hump Day

Notice the trend? They've decided that they don't care to wearing pants lately. I don't bother with the fights after diaper changes, and they're getting quite good at pulling them down on their own.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Breakdown or breakthrough?

It was one of those days.
Those days when you wake up dreading the start to the day. Perhaps it's been the lack of sleep. The nights filled with soothing the one teething babe, and the other babe with open sores on his tushie because he ate something that didn't agree with him again.
They give way to 5 am mornings. When the sun won't shine for another few hours.
Coffee cups are filled, and filled again.
The crying starts, the climbing, the falls, the tears, the screams.
Nat screamed through his morning nap, and Gabe screamed through the afternoon one.
The packing for this weekend's trip was put on the back burner.
It's like a slow boil starts in your body, the temperature rising little by little until something gives way.
I lost it today. My voice was too loud, my words too stern.
I reached my breaking point.
I broke down.
I knew it was coming. I could feel it. My yells that were met with giggling boys quickly turned to sobs.
I cried. The hot tears streamed down my face. Sobs of frustration and exhuastion.
My boys knew that mama was not okay. I was given sweet hugs and kisses. Yet I didn't feel any better. Their sweet actions that would usually melt my heart did nothing. I was spent.
I know that I need some time for me. I need to concentrate on Anna for some time.
I haven't had a stretch a time away from them for some time now. In fact, it's been 2 months. In early November, when Joel and I ran back up to the Cities to finish the last of the packing. It was the day that Gabe decided to start walking, just one week after his 1st birthday. It was 8 hours.
The longest I have ever been away from them was 11 hours.
Yes, I have it marked down to the hour.
They have never spent a night away from their mama in their short 14 month lives.

Tonight will be the first.

I couldn't go on the weekend trip to Grandma and Grandpas. While I would love to have a visit and a change of scenery. I know that in the end when we returned home I would be stretched a little thinner. Right now I don't have much more to stretch before I snap.
Trips are hard, and I usually end up more exhausted than usual due to bad nights of sleep and terrible napping.

So tonight mama said goodbye to her boys for the next 48 hours. They will travel with daddy to Wisconsin.
Not just for one night away, but two.
My heart was aching, but I know it is for the best.
I'm taking the next two days and living the hell out of them.
Full nights of sleep - I haven't had one of those since before the boys were born.
A long hot shower without the screams of little boys wanting to get out of their playpen.
A cup of hot coffee at about 8 am. Yep, I am sleeping in until 8! Sounds delicious right about now.
I might even see a movie by myself.
I am hoping to spoil myself like I have been wanting to do since I was pregnant.
There are just as many not-so-fun tasks
Sorting through the ever growing bins of outgrown clothes. There are baby books that have been needing to be updated for about 10 months or so. The task list is a mile long and would probably take me a good month to complete with my little monkeys getting into to everything. I'm hoping to get it finished in the next 2 days.
I'm going to miss my babies like crazy.
I am hoping that at the end of this weekend I will feel refreshed and ready to be a full-time mom again.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Hump Day

Last Christmas. Slumbering babes cuddling on warm bodies.

This Christmas. Bundled up and taking our first sled ride.

What a difference a year can make.

These little men are keeping mama quite busy lately. I can never turn my back on either one of them (hard when there are two) We've managed a number of bumps and bruises with all of the climbing that has been attempted lately. I have never seen such active kids.
They have attempted to climb everything. Highchairs, dining room chairs, coffee tables, safety gates, turned over toy buckets, racks in the dishwasher.

There have been a number of occasions in which I rescue one down from the piano, and turn to see the other one on top of the dining room table. Seriously.
I'll be glad when they are old enough to start gymnastics.