Wednesday, February 26, 2014

5 Month Update for the Twins

The babies are 5 months old! These little sweeties have Mommy and Daddy wrapped around their fingers. Some days, they like to try our patience but then they give a big gummy grin and you can't help but smile back at them. Most of the time they are pretty happy babies and we are enjoying this phase!

I'm pretty sure they have more food on their faces than in their bellies!
Foods: The big milestone this month has been solid foods. I have to say, food is a hit with my girls! They are loving everything we give them....except they don't really seem to enjoy the rice cereal. We've given them "baby food" but we've also given them food off our plate so they can try different textures and tastes. For baby food, they've had green beans, squash, applesauce, blueberry applesauce, MumMum crackers, chicken, and rice cereal. For real food, they've had avocado, sweet potato, cream of wheat, green beans, carrots, tomato, mandarin oranges, black beans, and broccoli. Oh and let's not forget about the sweet treats from Grandma, Peeps and ice cream! So far they are adventurous eaters and I'm hoping that continues and we don't have too much of an issue with pickiness down the road.

Sleep: This month has been a million times better than last month. I feel like we've finally gotten into a good groove again. Last month we were having a constant battle with naps and night time sleep was suffering as well. I don't know if it was just a passing phase or if I did something to fix the problem, but I don't care; I'm just happy because they are sleeping so much better! It's still not perfect, but any and all improvements are a welcome relief. For naps, I've been able to put them back in the same room again but Eden usually wakes up mid-nap at least once a day and I end up moving her into my bedroom so she doesn't bother Lydia. I think its become a game to her. She wakes up, spits her binkie out, lets out a few squawks and stares at the door waiting for me to come in. (If I don't come she starts wailing and wakes Lydia.) She gives me a big smile when I pick her up and then goes back to sleep when I lay down with her for a couple minutes in bed. I know I'm probably forming a bad habit but it gets her back to sleep and pretty soon she won't want to snuggle with me anymore! Lydia has become a much better sleeper now that she has figured out she can roll over and sleep on her belly.

This is what happens when you forget to buckle Lydia into the swing. Thankfully, she didn't roll right out!

They just look so grown up sitting in the recliner
Like I said, they are usually happy girls which makes for a happy momma too! They love to smile, giggle, play patty-cake and peek-a-boo, and sing (aka make squealing noises while I sing). They also love when their daddy holds them up high and takes them on airplane rides. Nate is enjoying that they are not so fragile anymore, and he can play around with them more. They are truly our whole world and we love them so much!

All the Shepherd cousins. I can't believe how big my girls look next to Baby D!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

A Day In the Life of a Twin Mom

When people find out I have twins they always ask, "How do you do it?" I don't really have a good answer other than I wake up and take whatever the day brings. We do have somewhat of a routine that we try to follow. Basically we live in 3 hour cycles throughout the day of eat, play, sleep but sometimes the babies miss the memo and have their own ideas for a schedule. I kept a little log today so you can see what a typical day is like for us. It's not too exciting but it's life.

6:00 AM- Lydia wakes up. It's too late for a night feeding but it's too early (for me!) to start the day. After a mini, internal debate, I bring her to bed with me and we snooze until Eden wakes up.
7:20 AM- We are up for the day. Babies have some snuggle time with Daddy while I get a drink, brush my teeth, etc.
7:30 AM- I breastfeed them at the same time.
7:45 AM- Diaper change. Rub the girls down with the delicious smelling, pink baby lotion and get them dressed for the day. I always tell them a scripture story while we get ready. Today was Jonah and the whale.
8:30 AM- Naptime for the babies. I eat breakfast and read my scriptures. Clean the kitchen from last night's dinner.  Throw in a batch of baby laundry. Jump in the shower and get ready for the day.
10:15 AM- Babies wake up
10:30 AM- Nurse
10:45 AM- Diaper change. Tummy time. Put laundry in dryer. Skype with Grandma.
11:30 AM- Nate comes home for lunch. Quick playtime with the babies.
11:45 AM- Naptime
Noon: Nate and I eat lunch together
12:30 PM- Girls wake up. What?!?! It's only been 45 minutes, what are you doing awake? If only one of them wakes up, I soothe her back to sleep. But when both of them wake up early, it's just impossible for me to help them so naptime is over and I prepare myself for grumpy, tired babies.
12:45 PM- Feed the girls applesauce. It's messy business, but they love it!
1:00 PM- Story time. Today featured The Little Engine that Could and Happy Birthday Moon
1:20 PM- Playtime in the baby gym while I throw dinner in the crockpot. This is when the breakdown starts. Fussiness turns to crying and screaming. Change their diapers amongst the tears and get ready to feed them.
1:45 PM- Nurse
2:00 PM- Put babies down for nap. Fold the laundry while they settle down.
2:15 PM- Eden is asleep. Lydia is screaming.
2:30 PM- Lydia is asleep!
2:50 PM- Eden wakes up. I quickly move her into my bedroom so she doesn't wake Lydia up. Give her a binkie and she goes back to sleep.
3:00 PM- Lydia wakes up crying. Give her a binkie and pat her back for 5 minutes.
3:15 PM- Lydia wakes up again. Soothe her again.
3:20 PM- Eden wakes up again. Red eyes and tired cry tell me she is not ready to be up. I lay down with her in  bed and we both fall asleep.
4:15 PM- Eden wakes but still seems tired so I put her binkie back in and she quickly falls back asleep as do I.
5:00 PM- Both babies wake up. Wow! We may have had quite a few interruptions but that was the longest nap they've ever taken!
5:05 PM- Nurse
5:15 PM- Diaper change. Playtime on the floor. Snap some photos of my cute girls for the blog.
5:30 PM- Nate comes home and plays with the babies while I finish getting dinner ready.
6:00 PM- We eat dinner while the girls play in their Bumbos. That lasts about 5 minutes and then we each hold one while we eat.
6:45 PM- Rice cereal for the girls and then clean up their mess.
7:00 PM- Put the laundry away that I started almost 11 hours ago.
7:15 PM- Diaper change. Rub the girls down with lotion and put their pajamas on.
7:30 PM- Nurse
7:45 PM- Bedtime. Go back in the room a few times to soothe.
8:15 PM- Both babies are asleep! Some nights we are are not so successful and there is a lot of crying but tonight was a good night!
8:30 PM- Put the food away from dinner. Contemplate doing the dishes but ultimately decide to save them for the morning like I usually do.
9:00 PM- Sit down and watch the Olympics with my hubby and type this blog post.
10:30 PM- We'll probably go to bed around this time and hope the babies sleep through the night. If they don't, I'll be up around 4:00 AM and then get up at 7:30 AM and do it all again. (Update: My hopes were dashed! Eden had an off night and was up 3 times.)

Bumbo play time
There you have it. A typical day for me. Occasionally, we have an exciting outing to the grocery store and when it's nice out we fit a walk in there in the afternoon. I tried to do the gym in the mornings, but it just threw off the girls' morning nap and made for cranky babies so that's on the back burner for the time being. The days can be monotonous and even tedious, but I remind myself that I am doing the most important work on this earth by doing my best to raise my children. I thank God every day that these little ones have been entrusted to me and I hope I am doing enough for them.
Lydia is trying to steal Eden's toy
Love that Eden is sticking out her tongue for the camera

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Weekend in Dallas

Anyone  who knows my husband knows that the words Nathan and spontaneous are never used in the same sentence unless the word NOT is also included. Imagine my surprise last Thursday morning when he asked me if I wanted to go to Dallas that day. What!?!? Who are you and what have you done with my husband? We have been so sick of the cold weather and not being able to get out very much with the girls. When Nate checked the weather and saw it was supposed to be 75 degrees in Dallas that weekend, he figured it was the perfect birthday/Valentine's day trip for me! What a great husband!

I quickly gathered up our stuff, found someone who could take Ollie last minute (Thanks Seligers!!!), researched some things to do, and texted my friend Hilary, who lives in the Dallas area, to see if they wanted to meet up that weekend. When Nate got home from work we loaded up the car, fed the babies, and took off! In our rush we forgot to bring our camera so we have no pictures to document the trip. We even remembered it about a mile from home, but we were too stubborn to turn around and go back. It's about a 5.5 hour drive to Dallas and it was late, so we decided to stop in the middle of nowhere at a roadside motel along the way. It looked really sketchy on the outside, but hey, we were being spontaneous! And it was surprisingly decent inside. The girls slept great in bed with Mommy and Daddy. Mommy and Daddy did not!

Friday morning, we got up and finished our drive into Dallas. Once there, we really just wanted to enjoy the weather. We brought our jogging stroller and took the girls for a run at a nearby park. (I know, who travels all the way to Dallas just to go for a run? People who have a terrible case of cabin fever due to snow and ice at home, that's who!) There is a Chipotle coming to Bentonville, and everyone is super excited about it. We've never eaten at one, so we found one in Dallas to try out. It was good, but after living in Utah and feasting on Cafe Rio, nothing quite compares. We also went to a big farmer's market downtown, got stuck in rush hour traffic (fun with two crying babies!) and wandered around Ikea. The girls were a hit at Ikea. Everyone wanted to stop and smile at them. Eden was a little show off and smiled and giggled at everyone she saw. It got a little embarrassing when we had 10 people surrounding the stroller and blocking the aisle! That night we made sure to stay at a hotel that had cribs available because the whole bed sharing thing does not work for us!

Saturday we met up with Hilary and Eric and their little boy, I-Man. They so graciously offered to watch the girls so Nate and I could go to the Dallas Temple. I'm pretty sure this was the first time, we've left them with non-family. Big step for us! To thank them, we wanted to buy them lunch, but our plans were thwarted when the BBQ restaurant we chose was doing a special promotion and our entire meal was free!!!! Sweet!!!!! Appetizers, drinks, entrees, dessert, everything completely free! It was GOOD food too. With very full bellies, we finished up the day at the Stockyards and then headed home. It was a quick two day trip but we knew there was another snowstorm coming that we needed to beat home. We are back to being confined in the house but Dallas was a much needed getaway for us  and the girls did great with their first real roadtrip. Thanks Nathan for being so spontaneous! We love you!

Since I didn't take any pictures there and I can't have a blog post without pictures, here are a couple shots of the girls.

A month ago Eden would just face plant and cry. We are making great progress!

Lydia thinks she's ready to up and crawl. I think not!

They always have smiles when Daddy takes their picture