Monday, February 27, 2012

Baybay & Baybee: Week 28

28 weeks old!

Sleep! It was SO GOOD this week! We're not sure why, but this was definitely our best week of sleep yet. A few things have been different. Daytime sleep has been in longer chunks, lasting 1.5 -2.5 hours, compared to their usual 45 minutes naps. And they've been taking only two naps, instead of three or four. I'm not sure how this changed, it just sort of happened. Also, and this may be the biggest thing, the girls are learning how to put themselves back to sleep when they wake up. We've added a little more structure to the day recently, and have had a fairly constant bedtime of 6:30. On Thursday, in an attempt to find a diaper that would last the whole night, I got two Baby BeeHinds. That night they were in them for 12 hours. They fussed a whole bunch of times throughout the night, but mostly put themselves back to sleep on their own. This was our first time not changing them overnight. The diapers were very wet in the morning, but no leaks.

Friday they slept a lot better, and Sunday night they slept for 9.5 hours, from 6:30-4:00 without needing our help at all! I had to get up at 3:30 A.M. to pump a little milk because I was so uncomfortable. After I pumped, they were stirring and may have been able to go back to sleep on their own, but since I was up, I fed them and then we all went back to sleep until 6:30!

That was our best night. The following few went better than they had been before, but not great. I'm still feeding the girls at least once at night, sometimes two times, if they wake up in the very early morning before it's really time to get up for the day.

They are such pretty diapers - and so soft! We've been using the Flip covers (that Amber gave us) over them.

Ella fell asleep while Brett and I were watching a TV show. She was so cuddly that I didn't want to put her down.

Maya likes to "chew" on her thumb after nursing and sometimes when she's tired. She doesn't really suck on it, but I think it gives her some comfort anyway.

Ella has been saying "ma ma ma" all week long! I'm not sure she is saying it in reference to me, but rather just practicing the sound. It's still very sweet to hear. The big thing for Maya has been working on her moving skills! She can push up almost onto her hands and knees now, and she's figuring out how to scootch and pull/push her way around. She ends up moving backwards most of the time. I don't think that's what she intends to do, but that's what happens and she seems a little annoyed and frustrated by this. If she could talk she'd probably say something like, "Gah! I meant to go forward, darn it!"

She's on the move!

Sweet smiles. This was one of my favorite photos this week.

I got to go out on my own a few times, to do some shopping and poke around at the thrift store. We had a bunch of help/breaks from the babies this week. Selena took the girls for a walk in the stroller one day and Brett and I got to rest. Another time, Kathy came down and watched the girls while we went for a bike ride to the grocery store! We loaded up the tandem with food and had a great ride in the chilly air. Later that same day, Evan and Merry took the girls for a late afternoon walk.

Playing before their walk.

Tasty bracelet.

A great discovery this week was making meals in the slow cooker. I really embraced the CrockPot and used it almost every day! I would throw things together in there when the girls were napping in the morning and that evening we had dinner to eat. It was fantastic. I found a bunch of good recipes on this blog, and made up a few yummy soups on my own, using what we had around.

Maya and Ella have also been enjoying lots of food. We are keeping a list of the things they've tried on the refrigerator. So far, we are up to apple, banana, avocado, broccoli and peach. They love everything so far. Ella, especially, is quite taken with eating solids and practically inhales the food, while Maya contemplates each bite. Because of this difference, Ella has been eating twice as much. We bought two mesh feeders, which have been awesome! You can put anything in there with no worries about the babies choking, plus they get to feed themselves.

A bunch of shots of the girls with their mesh feeders:

The grass is always greener...

Extra pictures from the week!

Maya now rocks the mohawk.

About to smile.

Lazy day playing in the sun.

Maya wins the staring contest.

Exploring the texture of the mat.

This orange block was the coveted toy on Tuesday...

...both wanted it, really a lot... I got another one out...

...but that didn't help much.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Baybay & Baybee: Week 27

27 weeks old!

This week didn't start off on the best note, with Brett spending Thursday and Friday feeling sick. It was more of a stomach thing than a head cold, though he did have a small fever at night. Fortunately, Maya, Ella and I didn't get sick and we were able to let Brett get lots of rest while he wasn't feeling well.

Thursday morning scene: Maya keeps Brett company while waiting for her turn to nurse.

The girls and I took a long walk on Friday. It was so warm out! We made a big loop up into the center of Florence, got a treat to eat (for me) at Cooper's, and headed up the bike path towards Look Park. Eventually we came back past the library and home. We were gone a few hours and Brett slept the whole time.

The twins turned six-months-old on the 10th! They seem like such big kids now that they are sitting up so well. Both girls have started reaching up for us when they want to be picked up (I find this so endearing) and this week, Ella has started playing with "mmm" sounds. Maya can schooch her way around (mostly backwards) and is working on getting on her hands and knees. They can both take sips of water from cups now, though often they spit it right out. Sucking on their toes is a current favorite activity. We are so excited to see what changes the next six months will bring.

Good morning! We are six months old today!

Saturday was a long day. We went to Boston, via Greenfield, where we stopped to deliver some food to new parents Spartan and Hannah, and meet Max for the first time. Max Vito was born on January 31st and he is so cute and so little. I have a hard time remembering when Maya and Ella were that small. When I held him, he felt so light in my arms. He also made the cutest stretches and baby yawns. Congratulations, Spartan and Hannah, he is precious.

Spartan holds his two-week-old son, Max.

Sweet baby, sleeping on his Mama.

Ella thinks Spartan should grow a longer beard.

The drive from Greenfield to Boston went smoothly. Maya and Ella slept nearly the whole time, waking shortly before we arrived. We stayed at Alex and Julie's for most of the afternoon. We snacked and talked and played with the babies. We even got to play a game! Our friend Dave was also there, visiting New England from San Diego, and it was good to catch up with him a bit. It was his first time meeting Ella and Maya. Alex and Julie's son Jackson was fun to see, and we definitely thought about the future a bit as we watched him walk around, eat real foods, and interact with the world in completely different ways than our girls can right now. Our drive home in the evening didn't go as well as our drive there. We were all tired and there was some crying and a lot of leaning back over the passengers seat until we finally made it home.

Walks are good for tired babies. Dave and Alex (carrying Jackson) led the way, while Julie and I (carrying Maya) followed along. Brett carried Ella in the Moby wrap and took this picture.

Maya and Ella, happy right after their nap/walk.

On Sunday, we went to the twins group meeting at Cradle. We hadn't seen Avery + Jonah and Evelyn + Olivia in a while, and everyone had grown so much in a month! It was fun to see all the babies play and interact with one another.

A picture of the twins all together.

Someone dumped out all the toys...

Ella sees the one she wants.

Upside down!

Ella and I have fun after nursing.

"Hi, down there!"

Maya discovered that the play mat makes a good chew toy.

We fed the girls some more avocado, and tried out sweet potato this week. They seemed to love the taste of the baked sweet potato and gobbled it up, but Maya spit most of it back out later. I think she might have eaten too much, or too fast. Avocado seems to be their favorite food (out of the few we've tried) and below are a couple pictures of them eating that. We experimented with letting them use their hands and get messy while eating. As fun as it was, next time, we think we'll use bibs and spoons.

Some of the avocado ended up on Maya's face, and hand, and foot, and leg...

Ella says, "Who ate all the food?"

Below are two pictures taken on Valentine's Day.

Getting a taste of love.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Mine and Yours.

I took this little video the other day before nap time. It really seemed like the girls were playing an intentional game with the pacifiers. Maya was having fun -- not so sure about Ella!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Baybay & Baybee: Week 26

26 weeks old!

After I posted the weekly update yesterday, I realized that I had been so excited in finally getting a post out that I forgot to mention the great night of sleep we had that week. You'll notice I said, "night" singular not plural, because though we tried to replicate it, no such luck.

On Sunday the 29th, we went to Leyden for the day. I didn't take any pictures while we were there, but Kathy got a bunch of nice shots of the girls. We took a great walk together and stayed for dinner. The girls didn't take a third nap that day, (not from lack of trying on our part) so they were up for a lot longer than usual (and later) before bed. We held them most of the evening, during dinner, and left Leyden at 8pm. They slept the 45 minute drive home. Once home, we changed, fed, and put the girls to bed. And there they slept -- with only one wake up each (to eat) the whole night! It was one of their best nights of sleep yet, and we were amazed. We wanted so much to understand what we had done that helped them have such a good night. Was it keeping them up later than usual? No third nap? The walk? The length of time between feedings? The 45 minute "nap" in the car before bed? Heck, we had no idea, really.

The next few evenings we tried to replicate that fabulous night. We rocked them in their car seats, we kept them up, we tried spacing out the feedings, we took walks, but they never had such a good night again. There were a couple "better nights" thrown in there, but nothing amazing. Sleep continues to be a mystery for now. That one great night was a treat, and it helps me hold on to the hope that one day soon we will get to sleep at night again.

Maya and Sophie the Giraffe in black and white (photo by Kathy).

Ella reaches for the camera (photo by Kathy).

This week, Maya and Ella continued to perfect their new sitting skills. They are getting better every day and it's fascinating to see how fast they learn! Reaching for a toy while sitting seems so easy for them now, but I remember how they used to topple over most times that was attempted last week.

Practicing sitting up and sharing toys.

Over the weekend, Guy had a Superbowl/game party at his apartment. Even though it was in the evening, we all went to help celebrate. We got to play a couple games, spend time with friends and eat the yummy pizza that Guy made. Selena and I dressed Maya and Ella up in cute outfits earlier that day and even though they were tired for most of the party, I think they had fun.

Ella plays a game of "Whoosh!" (Dada holds baby and repeatedly flies her toward another person while saying, "Whoosh!") with Uncle Guy.

This is a current favorite toy -- the coveted jar lid.

My favorite picture of Maya this week.

My favorite picture of Ella this week.

Now that the girls are sitting up, we found a new use for the boppy pillow!

Brett and Ella wash dishes.

Pretty in pink -- spending time with Grandma Kathy.

A walk around the block together with Grandma.

Here we are on a walk early in the morning, on our way to check out an estate sale in town. It's really nice to be able to get out and do things. Also, we really like the Ergo carrier, and are considering getting a second now that the girls can be on our backs.

Daisy came over for a visit before heading back to Brazil next week. We took a walk and played with the babies for a few hours. It was good to give her hugs and kisses before she left!