October, 2009

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Thank You Art

Sunday, October 25th, 2009

As many of you know, I love making things.  I would much rather try and make or build something, than go to a store and buy it.  The babies “Thank You” cards for their birthday are no exception.  It was a great way to introduce the kiddos to the concept of handmade.  This was a very easy project.

I started out with plain thank you cards because I didn’t really have time to cut and fold paper like I had planned.  Next came the fun part!  I gave each of the babies a piece of bubble wrap and put some globs of finger paints on it.  The first thing each baby had to do was stick it in their mouths to taste it.  Ella either thought it tasted good, or was really hungry because she kept eating the paint.  Jack took a couple tastes and that was it.  OK, so the next step was to have the kiddos smear the paints all around the bubble wrap.  Ella was really into it.  Her piece of bubble wrap was all gooey, and painty, and gorgeous!  Jack needed a little encouragement.  He wasn’t real sure about the paints.  After awhile, he did a little smearing.  After the paints was good and mixed, I took the cards and “stamped” them with the bubble wrap.  I think they turned out looking awesome!!!

A Morning at the Park

Tuesday, October 20th, 2009

This morning the babies and I went to the park to meet up with some friends.  They had a blast!  Ella had fun walking around “talking” to everyone and taking their toys.  Jack played with the girls and hid behind the stroller.  I wanted to take them down the slide, but it was too wet.  I think they were pretty happy just chillin on the blanket.  I take that back, they tromped around everywhere, but the blanket.  Ella found some ants to sit in and Jack found some sand to eat.  They both discovered how fun it is to rub their hands all over the sand and concrete.

I had a good time too.  It was nice seeing Michelle again.  She has twin girls that are 9 months old, so it is fun to compare notes.  Angie was there with her 1 year old son and almost 5 year old daughter.  Ella had fun playing with the 1 year old.  Maribel was also there with her son who is 2ish.  After spending so much time chasing the kiddos around all day, it is nice to have some adult interaction from time to time.

Photo Day

Friday, October 16th, 2009

I decided my kiddos needed to have 1st birthday portraits.  I didn’t want the traditional cake in the face type photos.  While I like those type of photos, I wanted something a little more unique for the twins.

These were all done over at the old Sweetwater Bridge.  Ella was super cranky and cried most of the time so we are going to go back soon so I can get some shots of them on the actual bridge.  Considering how cranky they were and that they both have new teeth coming in, I think they were perfect little models.

PArrrty Time

Tuesday, October 13th, 2009

A couple of Snowballs with candles wasn’t going to cut it for the twins’ first birthday, so Saturday was their big party.  Shae found a park with pirate ship slides and a “sprayground”, so obviously we had a winner (Hilton Head Park).  Shae’s parents and my mom came into town for the party and helped get everything ready for Saturday.  It would be great to say that everything went smoothly, but what fun would that be?  We all managed to wake up early on Saturday and get ready to head over to the park, but that was about where the smoothness ended.

Because we couldn’t reserve Hilton Head Park for our party, Tom (Shae’s dad), myself, and Lunchbox (wearing his best pirate bandana) headed over to the park about three hours early to grab a gazebo (hopefully) or at least a few tables (if all the gazebos were full).  As we pulled up to the park, it became apparent we had a problem: all of the gazebos and tables were reserved.  There were at least five other birthday parties going on at the park that day.  Apparently we weren’t the only ones who thought this was a good place to have a party.  It was too late to change locations at this point, so I set up a lawn chair in the middle of a nice open area and Mr. Box and I sat down and reserved our space while Tom headed back to the house to pick up a table, some chairs, and our BBQ.

Since we didn’t get a gazebo, Shae and my mom tried to track down a canopy to provide some shade (while I sat in the sun and got a nice sunburn).  I called Costco to find out if they had any canopies, but was told “canopies are a summer item, it’s winter.” Pointing out that we live in San Diego and it was 80 degrees outside didn’t help.  Eventually, Shae and my mom tracked down a canopy, and while waiting for them to get to the park Shae’s parents and I watched a guy next to us try to set up his canopy.  I really can’t do the scene justice, but basically every time he tried to put one side of the canopy together the legs on the other side fell off .  The fact that he his shorts were falling off and he was sporting a Hall of Fame plumber’s crack pushed the entertainment value even higher.  This went on for about 30 minutes until he finally got the canopy up. We were a little disappointed that the show was over until our neighbor pulled out another canopy and started all over.  Somehow, he learned nothing from his problems with the first canopy and was just as entertaining the second time. (Hours later, after several beers in an alcohol-free park, canopy-man would take his frustration out on the guy who was supposed to help him set up. That was fun too.)

Anyway, Shae and my mom showed up with the canopy and the cake and we got everything ready for the parrrty (get it..because it’s pirate themed…Arrr!).  Once everything was set up, things went pretty well.  We fired up the BBQ, people started trickling in, and the babies turned on the cuteness (not that they can ever turn it off). Before long, we were chatting and chowing down on dogs and burgers.

Once everyone (including the kiddos) was done with lunch, it was time for the cake.  We thought that Jack and Ella had fun with their birthday Snowballs, but that was nothing compared to the mess they made with their birthday cake.  They loved their cake, so of course they took turns smearing it all over each other and making a nice mess.

After taking the birthday babies over to play on the swings (their first time, they loved it), it was time to open some presents.  The little ones got lots of great stuff, but their favorite part was the wrapping paper.  It’s only a matter of time before Jack and Lunchbox start fighting over cardboard boxes.

It’s hard to believe we made it through the party without anything too disastrous happening, but we did.  We had a lot of fun, and I hope everyone else did too.  I’m sure the next birthday party will be even crazier since both kids will surely be running in different directions.  We can’t wait.

Happy Birthday

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

Wow, it’s hard to believe it’s been a year since Jack and Ella were born. A year ago today I was sitting in a hospital room with two tiny babies and a drugged up wife. The past year has been crazy, but it’s also been a lot of fun.

It’s dificult to know for sure, but I think both of the kiddos have taken their first steps. I’m not sure where the line is between a controlled fall into the couch and actual steps, but I’m pretty sure Jack and Ella have both crossed it. Ella even occassionally takes a couple of steps without falling down, but only when she’s not paying attention.

On a similar note, it’s getting harder to define Jack’s first word. Lately, he’s been looking at me and saying “Da!” but I just can’t bring myself to count that as his first word. He’s been making “Da”, “Mum”, and “Ba” sounds for quite a while. Just because I’ve trained him to say “Da” more than the other sounds (much to Shae’s annoyance) doesn’t mean I can count it as his first word. If he wants credit for talking he can throw out something like “Hey, pops please give me some pasta for dinner”. I’ll accept that.

The kiddos will be getting their birthday cake at their party on Saturday, but we had to give them something for their actual birthday.  Here are a few pictures of Jack and Ella enjoying their birthday Snowballs.

1 year later

Sunday, October 4th, 2009

Can you believe it has been a whole year?  A whole year with two crying, pooping, screaming babies.  October 7, 2008 at 7:52 and 7:53 am, Jack and Ella were born.  We have been updating you on their progress for this past year, but we haven’t really updated you on our progress.

One year ago, I was scared shitless.  I had no idea how I was going to raise a baby, let alone two.  Everyone gets all excited when they go in to have their babies.  I was more scared and anxious than excited.  I was trying to get a failing buisness up and running again and the twins seemed to come at the wrong time.  Well, I didn’t have much a choice at that point.  They were coming no matter what.  The night before I went in I was actually able to get some sleep.

After the horrible experience that was my c-section, I was able to meet my Jack and Ella.  They were absolutely perfect.  Cute little feet and hands and noses.  While I was in the hospital, it was kind of like a break for me.  Sure, I couldn’t walk and I was really sick from the drugs, but I was able to just focus on my babies and nothing else.  When I got home it was a whole different story.

We decided to shut down the business since the economy took a nose dive and it gave me a chance to stay home with the babies.  So have I changed?  Hell yeah I have changed.  I have two freaking babies!

It didn’t take long to get into a good routine.  I figured out how to feed them both at the same time and how to change a million diapers during the day.  Things were pretty easy in the beginning since they just laid there and did nothing.  Sure, I had a bunch of break downs in the middle of the night when they wouldn’t stop crying and I was only getting about three hours of sleep a night, but Pat was there to give me lots of hugs and take over the feeding and changings for me.  I was still worried about raising them and if I was going to be a good mommy, but things just seemed to be working out.  Things got a little tougher when they started rolling over.  At this point, I couldn’t just leave them alone to go make bottles or change one.  I actually had to watch over them.  the nice thing was that they were so excited about being able to roll over.  The next BIG challenge came when the became totally mobile and started crawling.  I spent a whole lot more time on the ground chasing them around and playing with them and all that fun stuff.  I think it was at this point that I realized I may actually be doing a pretty good job with them.  They were on track and hitting all their milestones and were actually pretty happy babies!  I had a routine down during the day and I was finally able to get out the door with them in under an hour.  This was huge!

A couple of weeks ago, the twins got a whole lot more mobile.  They are now walking along the couch and coffee table and taking a few steps here and there.  They are also no longer satisfied with sitting in the bouncers or the play pen.  I still have to figure this step out!

I guess this brings you up to present day.  I am still a little freaked out, but I have learned to just go with the flow.  We have good days and bad days.  There are days when I just want to throw in the towel because they spend the day crying and there are days that I don’t want to end because I am having so much fun with them.  My priorities have changed a lot too.  Now, my priority is obviously the twins.  Not that I ever went out much before, but now that sort of thing has been put on the back burner.  I am still not comfortable having a babysitter stay with them unless they are already in bed and asleep.  I have no idea what is in store for us this next year but I am excited about it.  I know it will be hard having to chase around two toddlers all day, but I am looking forward to spending every second I can with them.  I am so happy we had two.  I just can’t imagine what it would be like with just one.  I think things would be pretty boring for them.  With the two of them, they can spend their time playing with each other and keeping each other company.  Yeah, it would be easier to go grocery shopping and to the park and stuff like that, but I wouldn’t change it for anything.  I think my life is pretty darn great right now!