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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The best part of wakin' up...

The best part of wakin' up?

Nope.

Not Folger's in my cup.

Image Credit


First of all...


But, more importantly, how could coffee (and you know how I love my coffee) ever compare to the those sweet early morning moments when...

I walk quietly into the Babies' room and sit by their beds, soaking in their beauty.

I look at their cute feet, sticking out of their covers.

I smile at much they sleep like me--legs and arms everywhere--sometimes sideways across the bed.

I notice the way their hair falls across the pillow.

Emily usually stirs first--like she did yesterday morning.

The conversation is always amusing.

Yesterday, she seemed to confuse waking up with our nighttime routine. She asked if there was money for the piggy bank, followed by, "Mommy, we forgot to say our prayers. Who are we going to pray for?"

Then, there are the sleepy hugs. And breakfast requests...

Pancakes!
Waffles!
Cereal!

And, Drew.

I just love watching him wake--slowly and grumpily.

His arms start moving first, followed by his legs. Sometimes he moves into a full-body tantrum (usually when he's awakened against his will).

But, then there are morning like yesterday morning, when he wakes sweetly, when he gently croaks, "Morning, Mommy."


Five minutes.

That's how long the magic lasts.

Once all the feet hit the floor, it's on.

And, I don't just mean the Keurig.

Image Credit

Thursday, February 21, 2013

P&C Weeks 7 & 8: A Perfect Fit

It's a familiar MaMe Musings' story...

We are having a hard time around here fitting it all in.

Once again, blogging has been squeezed out to fit in the other things that keep life moving around here.

Until I can find a way to fit more time in my day, I'll just have to keep jotting down topics for future posts. There's so much I want to write and share, but until then, I'll let a few pictures do the work for me.

Some days, things are just too big....


Some days, things are just too small....


And, thankfully, some days, things are just right.
Photo by Lundie's Photography, shared with permission

Big. Small. Just right. It all makes me smile like peas and cheese.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Valentines x 2

Sometimes an e-card says it all...


Or almost.

I would have to add that my twins have also shared Valentine's Day cards--

But not this year.

Last year it didn't even occur to me that I should pass out separate cards--one from each of them--to their classmates.

Hey, I thought I was doing good to churn out the 10 or so Pinterest-inspired, heart-shaped crayons, which, by the way, were a pain because they did not want to stick to the cards like they do in the picture. But I digress...

The truth is, it didn't occur to me that, just as each kid in their class was giving them an individual card, we should reciprocate with one from each of them as well.

In hindsight, it was a rookie twin mom mistake--one of those things you don't think about and that is not covered in the twin mom manual you receive when you leave the hospital.

And, when it came to teacher gifts, we also just gave one gift, although we did try to do a little more since we know how hard they can be were so grateful for their care of both of our children.

After hours of pinning potential Valentine ideas this year, it suddenly occurred to me that maybe we should do separate ones, but just to test out the idea, I put it to an official Facebook poll. Duh. The results were unanimous: individual Valentines are the way to go.

So as I bemoaned considered the time and effort involved in 30 Valentines, I was reminded that it could be worse.

My super-awesome friend and mom to quads posted she was in the middle of completing 110+ cards. Okay, forget that I ever complained about thirty...

So with the help of free printables,

Have a Ball Printable and Wheelie Printable

cheap toys, cellophane bags,

and free labor,





we now have Valentines all packed up and ready to go for tomorrow's day of love.




And because I believe all teachers are (or should be) coffee drinkers, I couldn't resist this cute printable for our teachers' cards. Emily and Drew provided the decorated envelopes.
Free printable at Skip to My Lou



To prove I have learned my lesson about sharing Valentine wishes, let me now take this opportunity to wish each one of my dear readers a...



Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Party on Potty People

Almost a year ago to the day I pinned some helpful potty training tips and naively mused,

“I think we will soon be needing all the potty tips we can get!”

So how did those tips work out for us?

A year later, Emily and Andrew:
  • still have a lots of interest in the potty.
  • still are able to tell us when they have a dirty diaper (notice that I didn’t say will tell us).
  • still have a potty chair in each of the bathrooms (and we’ve added those potty seats to accommodate their smaller derrières).
  • still occasionally cram toys in said potty chairs.

    Still…

    We aren’t officially potty-trained.

    In fact, at first glance, it doesn’t appear that we’ve made much progress at all, does it?

    I am sure the parents of all the potty prodigies out are squirming to tell us how their little ones were just naturals. (Um, congrats? Sorry, that's all I've got).

    Some of you might be potty pushers who think we should have just tried a little harder or let them run around diaper-less a little more (To you, I say…I wish you had been here in December when we tried that approach, which was, conveniently, the same day the stomach bug hit our house).

    I suspect the vast majority of you, though, have the same potty pacifist philosophy we have—

    There’s no need to fight it. It will happen—eventually.

    Sure, we can quietly cajole with promises of M&Ms (and even toys for the elusive number 2s).

    When they do go, we will continue to cheer and dance around and triumphantly flush the toilet like we have just won the Super Bowl.

    We will continue to give up the sacred privacy of the potty room if it means modeling for them the way big people potty.

    We will keep asking where pee and poopie should go despite the fact that they know and still don’t care.

    And, we will continue to double down on the most effective strategy yet—

    We will continue to send them to school—to the capable hands of highly qualified potty professionals.

    Since starting her new school in January, Emily has been going to the potty almost every time and has even started asking to go on her own. (Drew is a less interested and a little less consistent).

    Last Friday, Emily’s teacher surprised us by telling us that Emily was ready to come to school in her big girl panties.

    You’d think the child had hit the jackpot!

    She talked about it all weekend.

    Yesterday morning, I sent my little girl to school in a clean pair of fresh Minnie Mouse big girl panties (and two more pair in a bag).

    When we picked her up, she wasn’t in the same pants (or panties), but apparently, she only had one accident and it wasn’t even a major one, if you know what I mean.

    As a former teacher, I know the importance of support from home. School can’t and shouldn’t do it all.

    I know we have to reinforce and be consistent with the potty training at home.

    That said, (bear with me--I know it’s not Friday) I have a confession to make…

    I confess: I need to pull up my (metaphorical) big girl panties and get over the fact that this whole “got to use the potty” thing is harder when I am actually in charge of making sure it happens.

    Case in point—

    Last night’s trip to Target (with Emily in big girl panties) involved no less than three requests to go to the bathroom. Three. Two of which were false alarms--

    All three of which seriously tested my tolerance of public restrooms…

    (Public pottiers, please feel free to share how you help a toddler squat).

    During a quick stop to Kohl’s, Emily asked if this place had a potty, too, because she wanted to “see” it.

    (Potty people, how do I explain that if you’ve seen one potty you’ve seen them all)?

    I confess: I am now singing, “Whoomp There It is” –the potty version:
    There's a potty over here
    a potty over there
    Wave your hands in the air
    Wipe your derriere!
    Whoomp chak a laka chack a laka chak a laka chak a…

  • Wednesday, February 6, 2013

    P&C: Week 6

    Last fall I enrolled Emily (and me) in a "Mommy and Me" dance class. At the time, it seemed like a fun way to have some one-on-one time with her. I definitely wasn't enrolling her with any delusions of having a dance prodigy on my hands nor was I trying to push her into a hobby for my own selfish reasons.

    Or was I?

    I admit I've done a gut check or two to unpack my reasons for signing Emily up for the class-- beyond the obvious reason that it seemed like fun (because clearly it wasn't always fun).

    I think parents walk a fine line between exposing their children to hobbies and extracurricular activities and over-scheduling and/or pigeonholing their young ones into certain hobbies from a young age.

    First, I think we all want our children to have varied experiences, especially ones that we didn't have or ones that were important to us growing up. I can admit that I want Emily to at least have the chance to try dance. By the time my parents could afford for me to go (sometime around 4th grade), my natural clumsiness had taken root. I felt awkward, out of place, and timid on the dance floor, and many years later, that feeling hasn't changed. I don't think it makes me an overbearing mom to give her the opportunity to try dance and try it early--when she is just as forgetful and flighty as all the other little girls. When, forgive the pun, she is on equal footing with everyone else...

    At the same time, I want Emily to find her own way--even if that means choosing not to be a dancer. While we persevered last season and kept going despite the hard weeks, I never felt I was damaging her. If I had felt her fickleness was due to anything other than being a toddler, I would have sucked up the tuition fee and the recital costume and quit. But, I admit, I often questioned whether I was doing the right thing...

    With those doubts, going into this year, I still wasn't convinced we would try another toddler dance class. I was still eying that fine line, still wondering if my own inadequacies as a dancer were pushing me to send her back, still wondering if even attempting a class at this age amounted to undo stress, still wondering if I was trying to make a dancer out of a would-be ______________.

    So we waited.

    And, that's when our dancer appeared.

    In January, Emily started asking to go to dance class. Out of the blue, she announced,

    "I want to go to dance class. I want a tutu."

    Still skeptical, we tried a free trial class.

    And, once again, there was our dancer.

    If I hadn't known any better, I would have thought Emily had been in the class since September with the rest of the girls.

    After a couple of minutes of mommy-clinging, she looked at home in the class. She vacillated between wandering aimlessly and practicing her plié, gazing at herself in mirror and sashaying across the floor, giggling with her new friends and breaking out her best zoo animal moves. By the time she log-rolled off the gymnastic mat at the end of the 30 minute class, I knew this year was going to be different from the last.


    Seeing my little girl dance. Seeing my little girl dance because she enjoys it.

    Makes me smile like peas and cheese.


    Sunday, February 3, 2013

    MRSA me!

    Let me start by saying thank you to all of you who have asked about Emily and her poor chin.

    It has been quite an ordeal.

    We started last week still wearing the band-aids, but according to Marty (I was too chicken to check), the chin appeared to be healing nicely.

    Tuesday morning, as we cleaned The Wound and opened our third box of band-aids, we noticed that while the chin itself was looking better, now Emily had developed a pretty nasty little rash on her face and her chest.

    At first we thought it was just a reaction to something she had eaten at breakfast. She has really sensitive skin so maybe it was just the juice from the orange irritating her or maybe it was from the milk she had spilled down her chin.

    She acted fine, so we dabbed a little hydrocortisone on the worst spots and sent her off to school.

    Around 10:00 am I got a call from the director of the school. Emily's teacher was concerned because the rash seemed to be getting redder, spreading, with white spots forming on some of the bumps. She offered to send me a picture so I could make the call on whether or not to take her to the pediatrician.

    If you know me, you know I didn't need to see the picture to decide to take her in. If there's a chance something could be wrong...

    But, I was calm, especially calm given the fact that I was out of town for work and well over an hour away from my baby.

    I called Marty and together we got the appointment scheduled and pick-up arranged.

    While on my way home, he called me to say he wanted to be at the appointment with me--that he had some questions for the doctor.

    Why the sudden interest? It's just a rash. Right?

    "Well. It's probably nothing, but I want to ask the doctor to check for a few things."

    Like...? You don't think this rash has to do with her cut, do you?

    "Well. I don't like the way it's spreading. I don't like the way the rash is starting to get those white things on it."

    So what do you think it is?

    "It's probably nothing."

    Probably?

    "I just want her to check for....MRSA."

    What???

    "Calm down. It's very treatable. You just have to know what you are dealing with. I've been working on a MRSA study at work and..."

    He lost me at MRSA.

    I held the panic in, my fingers itching to google this contagion...

    For the remainder of the 45 minute ride to the school, I clicked through pictures of all kinds of gross.

    I envisioned quarantine, masks, gloves, IV antibiotics, potential scars from pustules and boils. Oh, my sweet baby with her sweet baby skin!

    I was not thinking impetigo--

    Which was exactly what Emily had.

    Impetigo:
    "a highly contagious skin infection that mainly affects infants and children. Impetigo usually appears as red sores on the face, especially around a child's nose and mouth. Although it commonly occurs when bacteria enter the skin through cuts or insect bites, it can also develop in skin that's perfectly healthy." (from the Mayo Clinic)

    Turns out, I could cancel the impeding medical drama I had created in my head. A course of antibiotics and 24 hours at home and Emily would be fine to go back into the general population.

    Now whether Mommy is fit for release is another story all together...


    Saturday, February 2, 2013

    P&C: Week 5

    ...And double the tricycles--because there are just some things that even twins won't share.

    Twins. Peddling in unison. Warm winter days.

    Makes me smile like peas and cheese.

    P&C: Week 4

    From the very beginning, I've been a little obsessive concerned about what the Babies eat.

    My obsession concern is often the fodder for family jokes, like this status update from my sister (and our babysitter) last night:

    Sure, we don't take them to McDonald's, give them Little Debbie Cakes, or let them drink sodas.

    We try, when possible, to stick to all-natural foods with no added sugar, preservatives, or trans-fats.

    But, that doesn't mean we are totally prudes when it comes to food and treats.

    It's about moderation.

    One place where we recently fed our sweet tooth was Opening Night for the Carolina Hurricanes. With our water bottles in our diaper bag, we spent the extra calories on a treat they each picked.

    Emily's Favorite "Team":

    Drew's Pick:

    And for the hat trick of treats, Mommy's choice:

    While our team didn't win that night, there were still smiles all around as we enjoyed the sweeter side of life--together.

    Sugar and my sweet babies.

    Makes me smile like peas and cheese.


    I know it's not the fourth week in January. Bear with me as I serve a couple of double helpings of peas and cheese to catch me up on this Project 52 photo challenge.











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