Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Baybay & Baybee: Week 31

31 weeks old!

Spring has sprung!

We came back from Florida to snow on the ground (one of the very few times that some snow has stuck around for any amount of time this winter) which promptly melted away as the temperature rose and remained in the high 60's all week. The ground thawed (actually, I'm not sure it was ever completely frozen) the trees started to bud out and the crocuses came up!

The first two flowers to bloom in our yard!

One of the first things we did this week was visit the Bulb Show at Smith College. This happens every March and it's one of my favorite things. Brett, Selena, the babies and I all went together Tuesday afternoon, after Brett was finished working. Kathy came over that morning to visit with us while Brett was out doing his Pedal People route. She played with Maya and Ella for a while and then shoveled the snow off of our driveway while the babies were napping! Thanks, Kathy!

Ella and Grandma Kathy have fun together.

Brett, Maya and the flowers.

Family photo (taken by Selena).

Ella really wanted to grab the flowers. I don't blame her, they were beautiful!

On Friday, Maya and Ella had their well-baby check up and third set of vaccinations. We walked to the office for the appointment in the morning and they slept on the walk home. Brett and I love that we can walk to the babies' appointments; it makes us happy.

So nice of the doctor's office to put such tasty paper on the exam table.

Maya weighed 15.6 pounds!

Ella weighed 14.9 pounds! (She didn't much care for the weighing.)

Both girls felt just miserable later that day from the shots. We gave them some acetaminophen and cuddled up with them in our bed. Everyone but me fell asleep for a couple hours. I made myself some tea and enjoyed the time to myself. I only tip-toed to the bedroom to peek in the door about 57 times to check on everyone. I wasn't worried or anything.

On Saturday the 10th, Maya and Ella celebrated their seven-month birthday! They are both such happy babies and growing so fast! They love to sit and play with toys together, practice rolling and moving onto their hands and knees, chew on books and play peek-a-boo. Their favorite songs right now are, "The Wheels on the Bus" (they love the "beep! beep! beep!") and "The Itsy-Bitsy Spider" (they like the sign language that we do along with the song). They know how to drink from a sippy cup, and even from a glass with help, and are both in love with picking up pieces of cooked broccoli and feeding themselves. We are still nursing at night once, sometimes twice, if they wake up very early. Though the girls still wear diapers most of the time, we take our little BabyBjorn potty everywhere, and that is what they mainly use. Bath time is currently all about chewing on the rubber ducky. The water they could take or leave, but give them the rubber ducky and they are delighted.

"Duet a la sunshine".
After watching us play their little piano for weeks, they learned how to press the keys themselves to make music!

Yay! That was a beautiful song!

Lots of walks were taken during the week, because it was so nice outside. Besides our usual daily walk, either with the Ergos or the stroller, Maya and Ella had a few special adventures with friends.

Jim and Guy took the girls for a stroll around Northampton while Brett and I stayed home. They had fun walking around and playing at the library.

Selena and I took a walk together one day while Brett took a nap.

No more snowsuits -- it's finally good weather outside for more stylish attire! These beautiful sweaters were knitted by our friend Ann. Maya and Ella loved the buttons.

The monthly twins group meeting was this Sunday. We were sad that Chris, Kelly, Evelyn and Olivia weren't able to make it, but it was fun to see Benita, Sam, Avery and Jonah.

What's the best toy to play with? Why, a cardboard box, of course! I leave you this week with a bunch of pictures of the twins' first time (and certainly not their last!) playing in boxes:

Look what we found!

"These are great! Thanks, Mama!"

"I like her box better!"

"It's a little crowded in here..."

"...Yay! Lots of room!"

"I can have my box, and eat it too."

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Baybay & Baybee: Week 30

30 weeks old!

On Wednesday afternoon, leaving the car at the airport, we trekked through the windy snow (as quickly as we could, with babies in Ergos and luggage in tow) into the terminal. We made it through security without any trouble, (they even let our bottle of water that we'd forgotten to drink go through!) boarded our plane, and a few hours later, arrived in sunny, warm, Florida!

We spent a week visiting my family and enjoying the sun. This was Maya and Ella's second trip to Florida on an airplane and though they were a lot more active this time on the flight, it was still quite easy to travel with them.

Both girls slept for some of the three-hour trip. Coincidentally, a family that I used to babysit for happened to be next to us in the security line and even on the same plane as us! I had fun walking back a couple rows to visit them and meeting Massimo, their new baby, who is just about Maya and Ella's age!

It was past the girls' usual bed time when we arrived at Mama and Papa's house that evening. Maya went to sleep fairly easily after some hugs, but Ella was wired from the trip and it took us a while to figure out that she was also hungry. Papa fed her some buttercup squash and she settled down shortly after that and went to sleep.

Twin potty break after the drive to Mama and Papa's house from the airport.

Feeding the girls solid food is still new to us but it became more of a daily routine this week. We stopped keeping track of all the different kinds of foods that they had tried because they were eating so many things! Papa was especially excited about feeding the babies. He said that the gusto with which they eat (especially in regards to Ella) reminded him of feeding us when we were little.

Maya tried out Atom's chair and had fun smooshing banana all over everything.

Frozen blueberries in the mesh feeders make for two very happy, sticky, babies.

The weather was very warm most days, so the babies didn't have to wear much clothing and slept for the first time at night without sleep sacks. We had a few really good nights and a couple nights with multiple wake ups. It's really hard to see any pattern with the night time sleep. I've given up on trying to figure out why some nights are better than others. Naps continue to be great, for which I am thankful!

Ella, sound asleep clutching her pacifier.

Maya and Ella got to spend lots of time with their cousins Atom and Trillian. Atom is so big and Trillian is so little! The three girls are all still a little too young to get much out of interactions with each other, but it was fun to see Atom recognize the babies and hand them toys. Probably by the next time we visit and they all see each other, things will be much more interesting. We wish we lived closer to Amber, Scott, Atom and Trillian, because they are all so close in age that it would be nice to watch them grow up together.

Atom liked Maya and Ella's toys that squeak.

Hanging out, playing with toys.

Ella, Maya, Trillian and Atom.

It's always such a treat to spend time with my family. They are easy to be around, nice to talk to, and they live in a beautiful place. We got to go swimming in the lake (Maya and Ella's first time!), take walks, and relax with friends (Roni and her son Bennie visited) and family. It is a big trip to travel down to Florida, but worth it.

I loved how the warm room with the endless pool has been transformed into a greenhouse -- complete with a beautiful papaya tree!

Lots of other pretty plants live in the sun room now.

I was delighted to see all of the butterflies on the bottlebrush tree, in the garden near the outside shower. How wonderful to be able to watch butterflies while taking a shower outside!

Some highlight photos from the week:

Ella balances on Papa's hands.

Maya + Mama cuddles.

"Say cheese!" Grocery shopping with lots of babies.

On the drive to the Saturday farmer's market, Ella fell asleep while holding her toes.

Grandma with both girls.
In this picture, Maya shows off the funny "disgusted smile" that she was making when anyone would look at her. I'm glad that I got a photo of it. She was making this face so much for a few days and then she suddenly stopped. I guess she was just practicing.

Timmy and Atom play on the trampoline.

Brett + Maya + Ella.

Atom takes a nap on the couch on the porch.

Papa with both babies.

Maya gets a ride around the lake on Papa's back.

Grandma gives Ella kisses!

Group shots!

All the girls.

Grandparents with all of the grandbabies.

Everyone together.

Our flight home was Monday evening and we arrived very tired but glad to be back in our house. Here are a few things we learned while traveling with two almost-seven-month-olds:

  1. When babies who are used to napping in sleep sacks suddenly don't, there is a lot of rolling around before the sleeping happens.
  2. When one awake baby rolls on top of the other sleeping baby, it will wake her up. However, when one awake baby sucks on the other sleeping babies' toes, she stays asleep.
  3. If there is another baby on the plane who is screaming, your babies (even if they are a little fussy) seem like the most well-behaved children in the world.
  4. 30,000 ft. in the air doesn't stop Ella from pooping in the toilet and not in her diaper! (twice!)
  5. Even if the state that you just came from was warm, and you say to each other, "It's not very far, how cold could it possibly be?" stop, and think twice about the frigid, windy, night air, and make absolutely certain that you know where the key to the car is BEFORE walking, with two tired little babies and parents who are not dressed for winter, all the way out to the parking lot.

Brett, Maya and Ella make their last preparations before boarding the plane at the Orlando airport. Bye Florida! We'll come back again!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Baybay & Baybee: Week 29

29 weeks old!
(I forgot to take a picture of the twins in their diapers this week, so here is a fully clothed shot.)

The exciting news this week is that Maya has her first tooth coming in! It's her front-bottom-right-middle-tooth. It's pointy and sharp and other than a little extra clinginess, she seems to be handling it well. Ella is still toothless with no sign of anything poking its way through.

Soon there will be teeth showing when she flashes that beautiful smile!

Saturday morning, we visited Brett's parents in Leyden. We had brunch together and played cards while the babies napped. On our way home, we stopped to see Spartan, Hannah and Max.

Brett took this picture of Kathy and me playing with the babies together in Leyden.

At almost a month old, Max already knows how to give the peace sign!

We have been great about taking walks and getting the babies outside most days recently. Now that Maya and Ella are big enough to ride on our backs, our favorite baby carrier is the Ergo. It's a great way to take walks together, go grocery shopping or just wear the babies around the house. The only problem: we only had one Ergo - until this week! We found another on Craigslist in Florida for a good price and arranged for Mama to pick it up and send it to us. We got the package containing the Ergo and a few other fun things on Tuesday and we are loving having two of these carriers!

Ella tries out the new Ergo for the first time.

Family photo.

Brett and Guy took a walk together with the girls.

I feel like I did better than usual at taking time to go out by myself this week. I went to the thrift store a couple times and did some other errands on my own. Even getting out by myself to go grocery shopping is really good for me. I always come home much happier and less stressed.

I got two very cute spoons at the thrift store. The girls have been putting them to good use with all the food they've been eating!

Sunday was cleaning day. Though we straighten up regularly, it had been a while since we really cleaned the house. Now that the babies are starting to move around more, it was time to put some things up higher and mop the floors. This was by no means a thorough "baby proofing", but it was a step in the right direction. We have a long way to go to make our house baby proof!

Lots of toys, but they want to play with the bucket.

It's not always all smiles around here. Ella's new fascination is with her sister's ears. Maya is not pleased.

Maya and Ella spend a lot of time grabbing toys from each other.

I like to think of it as a convoluted way of sharing.