Thursday, April 30, 2009


Dylan and Owen laying together on the mat. Flashback to the early days of big brother, Ethan...something about the below picture is just precious to me...his eyes, maybe? is the only 8x10 of Ethan that I have framed. I love it.

Owen (L), Dylan (R): "Hey, how long have you been here?"...they are truly starting to notice each fun!


Oh. my. God.

I have three peacefully sleeping children in my home and I'm on. my. own.

My mantra for the weekend: "I am a capable parent. I am in charge."

If I can just keep that running through my head this weekend I think I will be okay.

Andy left about an hour ago to drive to Kentucky with his brothers and brother-in-law for this weekend's big Kentucky Derby, and he gets to hang out with my parents as well! I'm going next year...and that's that. I went to KY in the Oaks, the race the day before. But I was pregnant with Ethan that year, and partying in the infield on Saturday at the Derby was out of the question. Andy went with some friends, who drove up from SoCarolina, and I stayed home and did a puzzle with my mom. We had a did they!

I'm loaning my Oaks hat...a big floppy sage green hat with black ribbon and purple/pink flowers... to a friend who is able to attend the Derby party, here in MN, that our friends are throwing. Next year I am determined to celebrate the Derby with Mint Juleps...but this year, I'll watch the horseys run on TV with Ethan. He's already picked his horses. He seems fond of "Chocolate Candy"...big wonder there!! He also likes "General Quarters", "Musket Man" (his daddy's favorite too!), "Pioneerof the Nile", and "Mine that Bird"...Toddlers have incredible insight into some things...make your bets...

Anyways, as terrified as I feel I should be about being a single parent this weekend...I'm not, really. I can hold my own when Daddy's around, but there's just a sense of security when someone else is around. Someone who is as incredible a parent as our Daddy/Andy.

The upside is, I won't have any time for projects or other to-do's around the Type A will have to take a vacation and I will just have to spend all my time with my boys...oh doesn't get any better!!


Ethan was singing Old MacDonald with Gamma today...I was working in the basement and Daddy had the day off...he heard the following and came down to share with me. Gamma was pausing after they sang, "Old MacDonald had a..." so Ethan could fill in the blank. After a few he came up with..."Old MacDonald had a baby brother, with a wah-wah here and a wah-wah there..." What a sense of humor this one has!!


Along with that sense of humor comes an attitude. Ethan has made me tear up several times in the past couple days. I feel seasoned, a little bit, as a parent. We've been through some things...he's been a toddler for awhile...but some words just sting. Ethie can be so loving one minute and such a turd the next. Yesterday, I came home from work and Ethan was still sleeping during his nap. I went up to wake him around 5, because I had a softball game at 6 and I wanted to hang with him a little before Andy got home. I opened the door and he screamed, "No! Where is Gamma?!" That was enough for me. I went back downstairs without a word to him. Ouch. I tried one more time. Same thing. Some afternoons I am greeted with "Hi Mommy!" and huge smiles...then this. I went downstairs after my last attempt, scooped up Dylan and soaked up his love. Daddy came home, had a talk with Ethan, who "palagized" to me, and then I left for softball. I skipped the after-game bar with my team because I knew Ethan would still be awake and I needed to make up with him. We read a book and snuggled and all was good in the world again. At least I can console myself in baby-love when "two" Ethan kicks in...what happens when he is 4 and sassy, and Dylan and Owen are 2 and sassy too?! I guess that's when Mommy retreats to the basement with a glass of Pinot.


Tuesday, April 28, 2009

No creativity left for titles anymore

Ethie proudly displays his "too many cars!"

Dylan displays his best "deer in headlights"...see header, sometimes I catch his beautiful smiles

Owen...they don't make them any happier than this one, folks.


Ethan summed up how I feel about our house with uncanny insight the other day when he said, "There's too many stuff around you."

Ethan and I talk about what a good Daddy Ethan has quite a lot. Daddy is brave and capable enough to take his 3 kids out on his own (Mommy hasn't done this yet!). Daddy does things around the house without being asked (most of the time!). Daddy can fix/construct/destruct just about anything that needs to be done (just think about all the labor costs we've saved with all of our house projects!). When Daddy gets home from work, Ethan announces that he's "got a good daddy...he's a good man." Daddy was grilling the other day when we were all outside and Ethan said, "I got a good daddy. I got a good mommy too." Yep, that one gets the tears flowing.

Ethan went to the basement with daddy the other night and announced upon his return, "We went on a beer run. We got our beer and we're going to drink it all up." PSA: Ethan does not really drink the beer, but he loves to talk about beer.

There are so many funny things that he says now...some of them are only funny in his little voice, because when I start to type them up it doesn't read as just have to hear them in his voice...for example, "Will you make me a sandwich here, Mommy?" when I came upstairs for lunch just as Gamma and the boys were getting home from the mall. It doesn't read funny, but he said it while running over to me with a huge smile on his face and his intonation just kept going higher and higher, like people do sometimes when they ask questions, but he is practically squeaking by the end of his questions his voice is so high. It's funny...promise.


When I first graduated from college, rising early in the morning was not easy. I think I only had one 8am class through my years at Olaf...Calculus, which despite my hatred of early mornings at the time, I got an A in...I love Math and am a nerd like that...Anyways, I loved to sleep in and would wait until the absolute last minute to get up and get ready for work. 8:30 was typically the earliest I could get myself to arrive at work (I typically get to work at 8:30 now too, on my office days, but that's because of the hectic-ness of my mornings, not because of late-waking!). When I was freshly graduated, someone at my job was talking about how she'd done 2 load of laundry before getting to work at 7am that day. I thought she was nuts. Yes, that's a bit extreme, and would probably require waking up around 4am, but now I fully realize just how productive one can be in the morning when you get up early! least the ones where I'm working from home and don't have to bother getting myself ready, are a great time to get things done!! Today, the babies were up early...we fed them and got up for the day. I washed dishes, started the dishwasher, made coffee, Andy got some laundry started and did some ironing, I picked out clothes for the kids, got Ethan up, dressed, myself breakfasted and coffeed. And logged on to my work computer promptly at 7:45! So, maybe I'm not doing 2 loads of laundry before an early start to the workday...but I understand the appeal of early-rising now. Saturdays and Sundays are exempt.

I am officially "old"...I even whined on Facebook about the neighbors' bass on Sunday night...they are two houses down, so I think whining is justified!


Crazy went to jail yesterday. She got 6 months in a workhouse with work-release (although I would assume she lost her job) and 5 years of probation, along with some other stipulations (can't come near us, can't do daycare, no unsupervised contact with those 12 and under, etc). I thought I would feel better after the sentence was handed out, but I think I feel worse than ever. Did we do the right thing by agreeing to the Felony Child Endangerment guilty plea? 6 months is not enough. Should we have pressed further and gone the trial route on the Felony Assult charge? It would have been terribly emotional and painful to rehash everything, but even the Judge said that it was clear that something greater than an "accident", as she claimed, happened here even without having all the evidence presented to him. What's done is done and I think I just have to let this go and move on. But I can't help thinking about it. I also am curious about the results of the psychological evaluation that the Judge ordered. I think having her officially labeled as "crazy" might help me "understand" all of this. The idea that a sane person could abuse a child totally destroys my view of humanity. If she was clinically nuts, then at least I know "why" she did it.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Misc updates

Even since we stopped giving Ethan bottles (yes, this was recent and yes, he's 2 1/2), we've been having a really hard time getting him to drink any milk. He drinks everything else from a cup or a sippy, but he would not drink milk. Then Gamma had the greatest idea...she brought over a cup that has a cow on it and we use it just for milk. He wasn't quite sure at first, but we kept trying each night at dinner. A few days ago, he drank the whole cup..and he has every night since!


I knew it would be a sad day when Ethan stopped saying 'Go go gi gi' for motorcycle. We used to try to get him to say 'motorcycle'...."Ethan, say 'motor'"...."Motor"...."Say 'cycle'"...."Cycle"...."Say 'motorcycle'"...."Go go gi gi"...How it made us laugh!! But now, a 'motorcycle' is a 'motorcycle"...and it makes me sad. I asked him the other day to say 'go go gi gi' and he stated sternly, "I don't say 'go go gi gi', I say 'motorcycle'" little boy is growing up and leaving his creatively made-up words behind.


Ethan loves to cook with me. It's awesome and I can't wait until he can do more of, measuring, cutting, stirring. Right now, he helps "dump" and he can help stir too. Last night I asked him what he wanted to do this weekend and he said "Make more banana bread with you, Mommy!" So, we thawed some "yucky bananas" from the freezer and baked ourselves some banana bread last night and he devoured some for breakfast this morning...very proud of himself because he helped make it with the "little beer" (the little beer is the vanilla which comes in a tiny brown glass bottle, which I suppose looks kind of like a little beer!)


Gramma Nana sends Ethan emails through my yahoo account. When we get one, he sits on my lap in front of the computer and I read it to him while he sports a huge smile across his face. Last night, I tried to have him dictate a response. We've done Skype with my parents on the computer a few times, so I think he was confused. "Hi Gramma Nana" he waves to the computer. "I can't see or hear her" he says. "Good luck" he says with his arms up in the air (My mom is running a half marathon today)..."Where is her? We will look for her"...he says. We're still working on the concept of email...but I think the Skype thing really has him confused!!


Ethan's vocab is off the charts...he knows so many words and speaks in full sentences most of the time. His narration cracks us up.

Last night, after making banana bread, he said to me, "Clean those dirty dishes please, Mommy!"...look at those manners...we're working hard on them.

Daddy put Ethan to bed last night and asked for a big hug after books. Ethan said, "It's not a big hug, it's a big squeeze (which is what we call it most of the time!). A big hug is like a big squeeze" Funny.

He's still been really into sleeping on the floor for some reason. Typically, we'll cover him up in his bed and then he'll ask to sleep on the floor and we'll move everything from his bed onto the floor and get him set up. Last night he was in bed and said to Daddy, "Actually, I don't like my bed very much. I will sleep on the floor"...before we went to bed, we found him back in his bed, but most mornings he is still on the floor. What's with that?! I know he loves that race-car bed!!


I was reading the Star Trib the other day and my jaw dropped when I saw an article about Apple iPhone's "baby shaker" app. I haven't seen it myself because just the description made me want to vomit. I poked around Apple's website yesterday and I think I know who to direct my letter to. I started writing it yesterday and am hoping to finish it this weekend and mail it on Monday. I don't even have the words...and I know they pulled the app only two days after it was listed for sale, but what. the. hell. are. they. thinking?! I will post some information here on this later...


I remember posting about Owen and Dylan's personalities when they first came home from the hospital. Oh my, have they turned a 180. Dylan used to be so mellow, Owen screaming every time someone wasn't holding him or looking at him. Now it's my dear little Owen who just hangs out. If someone isn't right up in Dylan's face all the time, he gets so pissed. It's a good thing though...he's just really curious about the world around him and wants to interact so badly. He's even really making at attempt to sit up....he wants to see see see everything...and this laying on your back in a bouncy seat or swing is just not working for him!

Dylan rolled over, back to front, for the first time on Thursday. He had a little trouble swinging that noggin over too, his body was almost all the way around before his head followed, but he did it! Ack, freaks me out...but I'm very proud of him!

Maybe all that activity is making him more gosh, this boy can eat. He wasn't doing so great on rice cereal at first, he would cry for the first couple minutes until it got into his belly, but now, he is pouncing on the spoon. It actually makes the feeding pretty hard, bc I don't want that spoon going too far into his mouth, but he can grub on that crap really well now.

The boys have consistently been sleeping through the night now. Sleep. I love sleep. Last night, however, D woke up at 3am. He had moved himself from vertical in the crib, to horizontal in the crib and was pretty much head to toe to the sides of the crib....uncomf. I moved him, but a few minutes later he started crying again. I figured this big boy could be hungry, so I got a bottle and brought him to bed. Afterwards, he fell asleep next to me, and like his big brother Ethan, flailed around whacking me in the face several times. I didn't sleep very well with him in our bed, on the tiny little piece of bed that was left for me, and I wonder how anyone can do the "family bed" thing every night?!

It is always Dylan who squawks in the night or let's us know they are awake in the morning. Owen is so chill these days that he can be wide awake in the morning and just lay there and suck his thumb. When he first starting sucking the thumb I was worried, thinking that it would become a habit and I could never take his thumb away from him. But it is so nice for him (and us!) to be able to soothe himself back to sleep, or soothe himself while we are with another one of our kids. I'll cross the other bridge when I come to it...for now, it's awesome! Dylan sucks his pointer finger and middle finger instead of his thumb. He doesn't do it a lot though, most of the time he sucks on his bottom lip!

I inadvertently proved one of Dr W's theories on Thursday night. Andy got home and we all went outside. Around 6 I noticed that the babies were drifting off to sleep. They were due to eat at 6 too. It was SO hard to get Owen to eat before bedtime. I almost skipped rice cereal to just do a bottle, but I hate to break our new routine so I got a few bites in him before his bottle. He was totally crashed out during the bottle, but wide awake afterwards. He was totally overtired and wired. I brought him downstairs to put him in the swing thinking that would help him drift off again because he was just screaming every time I put him in his crib. He'd burped, wasn't hungry, and wasn't wet, and I knew he was tired. He sat in that swing with his eyes WIDE open. Eventually, I just had to put him back in the crib and let him yell it out. It was only 5 minutes, but it felt like forever.

Dylan and Owen are starting to nap more regularly. In fact, I just put them up in their cribs at 9 when they started looking sleepy. Dylan yelled once, and it's been quiet ever since...45 minutes. They still take some naps in the swings downstairs in our living room, but they are getting much better at sleeping in their cribs for naps...I love routine and schedules so I couldn't be happier about this!! Not to mention that they are much more fun when they are well-rested.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Mommy feels like poo

A great picture Gamma took this morning at her house...Owen eating Dylan's arm....

Who takes care of Mommy when Mommy is sick? Daddy...not by taking care of me directly, but by taking care of me indirectly by cooking all meals this past weekend and occupying our toddler. Thankfully, Owen and Dylan were pretty decent to me this weekend while Daddy and Ethan were out running errands and taking care of the yard. Owen fell asleep on me on Saturday, which was pure heaven (and later that day I napped with Ethan in our bed, while Andy napped with the babies downstairs....Owen on him that time). But pleasant or not, it's still work, and I still feel like crap. Last week I truly believe it was allergies, this week it is definitely something more evil and sinister, something that appears like allergies, but cannot be treated by Benadryl, Wall-itin, Target's "allergy relief medication", or Mucinex-D, or any combination of the above....and is accompanied by an unrelenting, dry and unproductive cough. Ugh.


Andy just interrupted this blog post by asking me if I wanted to see something really cute outside. I put Ethan to bed so he could get a start on fertilizing our yard while it's still light out. He found a baby bunny. It was sitting, shivering, under one of the drain spouts. He had found the nest....I had seen some fur around the area from our living room window the other day. We figure the fur that was off to the side of the hole was probably meant to plug up the hole to the underground nest. Andy picked the baby up, with gloves, and guided it back into the nest...we saw at least 2 other babies in there. I hope that his picking it up doesn't make Mommy Bunny abandon it, but what were the alternatives?!...I wouldn't have slept a wink knowing little nutbrown hair was freezing in our backyard.


"Two"....."two" is my nemesis. Not Ethan. But his body-snatcher who I call "two." Ethan is there one minute, and "two" the next. This afternoon, he was gazing adoringly at his baby brudders, and said "I love Owen....and I love Dylan...and Mommy...and Daddy...and Gramma Nana...and Gamma Leslie...." and on and on. If you are reading this, you were probably on the list. And Cec and Chris, after he said he loved you, he said "They live in Boston, we will go see them in an airplane," But then, "two" swoops in.....and a car falls from his Learning Tower and "Maaaaaah, I NEEEDDD that can geeeeet my caaaaaar, Mommmmmmaaayyy!"


Ethan's very into saying "I can't" lately. Which breaks my heart. It's about everything....I can't drink my milk, I can't come over there, I can't jump. I signed him up for some gymnastics classes that run for the next 5 weeks (the first week was last Friday) on Friday mornings that he'll go to with Gamma. Last week, Gamma told me he didn't want to take his shoes off and was shy at first. He doesn't jump. Ethan is used to jumping into the he kinda equates "jumping" with "falling". Tonight, Andy and I tried to practice some of his gymnastics stuff with him. He was very quick to tell us he couldn't do that "crab-man" walk, and he couldn't jump...but he warmed up to it after a bit of us looking like idiots crab-walking around the living room and bending our knees and swinging our arms to jump up. He did really great with the jumping...hopefully he'll be more interested in next week's class because he is very physical and I think he would really enjoy it. I hope this isn't swimming lessons all over again!!


Ethan has been much better about his eating lately. Eating meat is not an issue anymore. He will eat chicken, for sure, and he even ate some pork chops the other day. I've seen him take a bite of a hamburger. Progress. Vegetables are still somewhat of an issue...he's a fruit guy. He used to love corn, not so much anymore. For dinner tonight we had cheese ravioli, garlic bread, and green beans. He didn't want to eat any green beans, so he couldn't have dessert....Andy had bought a strawberry shortcake as an impulse buy because he went grocery shopping while he was hungry on far, I've been able to resist!...While getting into pajamas tonight, Andy and Ethan had a talk. I went into Ethan's room, ready to read him books, but they weren't there. I found them in the kitchen, eating leftover green beans from the tupperware. Ethan was eating them by the handfuls. I don't know how he got him to eat them, but turns out...he loves green beans! I told him I liked them too, and they are even better when they are warm, and he said "We could cook them!"


The babies are still eating like champs with 8-9 oz bottles during the day, but I haven't noticed much of an increase in the time between feedings....they still eat about every 3-4 hours. We do rice cereal at night, before bedtime. I think it's growing on them, it's not as much of a struggle anymore. The trick is to time that last feeding of rice cereal and bottle before they start passing out from exhaustion....not always so easy! I can't seem to keep these babies up past 6/6:30. They still sleep until about 6:30/7am, but I would love to just have a bit more time with them in the evening. I know, Dr W says this is every working-out-of-the-home parent's mistake....keeping the babies up later so that you can have more time with them, and you only end up messing up their sleep cycle to everybody's disadvantage. But....I don't have enough time with them!!! Gamma and Liz are getting them to sleep really well during the day...there have been lots of naps in the cribs lately which is great!!


Owen moves around in his crib at night in a mysterious kind of way. Last night, I went to close Ethan's door after he'd fallen asleep and heard some peeping in the babies' room and knew it was Owen (because mom's can tell the difference...seriously). The video camera is still pointed on the crib where they slept together, which is where Dylan sleeps now, so I couldn't check on Owen by turning on the monitor. When I went up to bed a little bit later, I just had to check. I couldn't go to sleep without knowing that he was okay. So, I opened the door and peeked in, and I didn't see him in his crib. My heart stopped beating for a second. I came all the way in the room...and then I saw him. I had placed him in the middle of the crib, the long way, when I put him to bed....and he had somehow moved himself up to the very top of the crib, smack up against the short, top side of the crib....and somehow, the blankets I had placed over him were still in the very same place as they had been when I placed him the long way.....weeeeeiiiiiird. He was fast asleep, but I needed to move him to make myself feel I did...and he didn't even peep. Wake-up came at 6:45am....I love these babies.


4.5 months later....I fit into some of my "normal"-size work pants....not all of them, even though they are all the same size, and primarily from the same store. I fit into one "normal"-size pair of jeans. The other pair of jeans I wear is the pair that Andy bought me in early February that I was super excited to wear because I could fit into them and they had a zipper....AND a button!! Now, I can pull them off without UNbuttoning or UNzippering....I have yet to get on that damned treadmill, but I will. It's hard to be betwixt sizes.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Being Mommy

It's a thankless job, this motherhood thing. Worth it, without a doubt. But I feel like I'm always working my tail off, to never get caught up, and at the end of the day, Ethan says, "Go back inside, Mommy!"....Ok, so that's just one And I'm seasoned enough after 2.5+ years of parenthood that I know that's just "two" talking. Not every day is like that.

But on days & evenings like this, where I'm working at home, doing three loads of laundry (which didn't include everyone's sheets which still need to be done - thankfully I could do laundry during my workday), trying to fit in baths for babies, emptying garbages, managing three screaming children while feeding one rice cereal while another had to be physically removed from the outdoors and continuously screamed so loud that he woke up the third (Andy must have thought I had nothing in control when he came home to that scene)...and I still wasn't on top of dishes today (sorry, Gamma!), formula & bottles today (sorry, Gamma!), and Ethan has some sort of spreading rash on his ass/thighs, and oh my god, when was the last time he bathed before tonight?!

But just ten minutes before the three-screaming-children scene, the 4 of us (me and my brood) were enjoying the beautiful MN spring weather, at last. Gamma has found that the babies' carseats fit perfectly side by side in Ethan's wagon. When I was done working today (after Ethan stopped yelling at me to "go back inside", and Gamma went home), the babies slept in their seats, in the wagon, and Ethan and I played. We played with the trucks, played catch, rolled down the "hill", and put leaves on each other's heads...which is hilarious, don't you know?! Dylan woke up after awhile and smiled at us. Then he got hungry...the result, aforementioned above.

Ethan has taken to sleeping on the floor. I've heard this can happen. One of my co-workers daughters does this. I thought it was weird at the time. Then Ethan fell asleep on the floor last weekend at naptime. Then he did it again the next day. And I just put him to bed, and as I was leaving the room he was yelling that he wanted to sleep on the floor...I thought it was just a delay tactic, but no, he really wanted to. So I helped him move his pillow and blankets to the floor and covered him up. Maybe he has his dad's back?!...Andy would much rather prefer a hard surface to our Beautyrest pillow-top.

Despite the invasion of the body-snatcher, "two", every couple minutes, Ethan has his charming times too. He continues to just crack us up all the time. He's considerate, asking me what I would like for breakfast. He says, "Let's go quick like a bunny." He announces at dinner, "There goes neighbor, George, and his noisy truck" when he drives by. Today, he got up from his "nap" and said to Gamma, "Where's the other one of the people?"..."Who?"..."Mommy" he says...I am the "other people"! These are all I can think of right now, but I am continuously thinking to myself, "Where does his come up with this stuff?"

I hesitate to write anything about babies sleeping, because I have jinxed myself in the past. goes...Dylan and Owen are sleeping well at night. We haven't gotten up with them at night since....last Thursday? I think? Sleep training sucks at the time...but it is so worth it. I still swear by Dr Weissbluth (is anyone sick of me writing about him yet?) and his book, "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child"...should be...Happy Parent!!! We still don't have much of a nap schedule, although they tend to take a little cat nap around 9 and then a longer nap in the afternoon. They don't seem to need a quiet, dark place...that's where we deviate from Dr W's guidelines, but it allows Gamma/Liz/me & Andy to be able to actually do something during the days we're with the kids. If we needed to put them down for a nap in their crib every time they needed to nap, we'd be stuck inside all day. Not fair to us, or Ethan!

Owen continues to rock the rice cereal. This surprises me to no end. He has always trailed a little behind Dylan on feeding...but he loves that mush. Dylan cries his way through the first couple minutes. I think he just isn't as patient...he's hungry and he wants it in his belly NOW, damnit! Once a couple of those rice cereal bites get into his tummy, he's a happy clam and does just fine for the rest of the feeding, but he makes you work for it at first...just like tiny Owen did when he first came home from the NICU with his 2oz far we've come!!

It may be a thankless job, but they are my life and I love them so much and would do anything for them, whether they thank me or not.

Harley Owen

Dylan and his penguin pal

Ethan at the park today

A little brotherly love...

Enjoying the outside at last!...

Saturday, April 11, 2009

A perfect weekend

Andy and I thought we had colds, because our kids all have them, but it turns out, we might just have allergies. Annoying, for sure, but a small price to pay for decent weather at last!! Andy popped Benadyl and napped on and off all day yesterday. Last night he finally found something that works and doesn't make him drowsy...Wall-itin (Claritin from Wallgreens). I've been taking Benadyl for years, so it doesn't make me quite as drowsy...but it wasn't helping me much yesterday as I spent 4 hours outside cleaning up our landscaping beds. Andy raked the front yard in the morning with Ethan, and when he was done, I started my mission to de-junk our flower beds. I've never sneezed so much in my life.

It looks better, but not good. Only the day lillies are coming up right now, so the beds are pretty bare, but at least they aren't covered in leaves and last year's dead plants. Ethan was helping me before lunchtime. He was all about scooping up leaves from the pile and putting them in the bag, and honestly, he was really helpful! At one point he announced, "We are having FUN!"...I'm glad that yard-work is fun for him...looks like that will be his chore!

It was hard work...

Just minutes earlier he was yelling from his room, "I don't NEED a nap. I don't WANT quiet time"...then face-planted into the carpet and slept there for almost 3 hours.

Andy went out last night. I did ok with the 3 boys on my own during dinnertime and bedtime...there is a lot going on, so it just takes some serious organization. Andy helped me feed Dylan and Owen rice cereal before he left. Then I made Ethan's dinner. He told me he wasn't ready to eat yet, but I figured I better be ready because when he's ready I could be tied up with babies. I fed Dylan a bottle and put him in the bouncy chair, then I fed Owen a bottle. Then Ethan decided he was ready for dinner so I got him set up with dinner, put Owen to bed, and then Dylan (who had fallen asleep in the bouncy chair while I was feeding Owen). It doesn't sound that difficult, but there's just a lot of activity going on at once, and timing is very important!

The past two nights, D & O have slept through the night. Rice cereal is going well, but the boys have been acting hungry after their 6 oz bottles, even after rice cereal. So, we picked up some 9 oz bottles and we've been doing those after rice cereal before bed the past two nights. We have also done 9 oz during the day sometimes. They go longer between feedings, and don't cry as much at the end of feedings. Everything with twins, or babies in general, is just learn as you go...we've forgotten so much since Ethan was a baby!!

I spent a good amount of time making fleece blankets for each of my sons the past couple days. At first it wasn't intended to be an Easter gift, but I started and finished my first one on Thursday night and then realized that I could have all three done by Sunday/Easter, so that became my goal. Friday night, Saturday during nap, and I still had enough time to wash them before setting them out this morning. I also spent a good amount of time in the Easter aisles at Target trying to pick out things for Ethan's Easter basket. It is SO hard to find things that aren't candy-based. I bought some Crunch eggs and 4 Reeses bunnies (I gave Ethan one, and ate the other 3!!), but that was it for candy. Ethan got one of the Crunch eggs this morning...bite size...we (as in Ethan) just don't do much candy in this house.

Ethan liked his basket...a car, playdoh, stickers, spinny egg with lightup thing (have no idea how to explain this one...Ethie calls it the "crazy egg"), and a Cars egg decorating kit. Oh, and the blanket that I slaved over. He liked the basket...the blanket, not so much. This is what he said to me, point blank, after I told him I made it for him, "Actually, I don't like it very much. I will put it on the floor at the bottom of my bed" joke. Ouch. We'll use it for something...they are perfect for floor-time...or maybe I'll sleep with it! It's very softy :>

My aunt and uncle hosted Easter dinner this afternoon. It was during Ethan's naptime so our plan was that I would go with the babies and Andy would stay home with Ethan. Dylan was sleeping when I needed to leave, so it was just me and Owen (who had just woken up from a 2 1/2 hr nap IN HIS CRIB!!) He was perfectly behaved...really, I could not have hoped for a better floored me! We had a great time!

When I got home, Andy and Ethan went out to pick up some the gas station, I believe (note to self: if you buy an egg decorating kit, make sure you don't use up all the eggs for breakfast the day before Easter!). Then we put Dylan and Owen to bed, ate dinner, and decorated eggs. Next time I will go for the pastel look...the directions said to add 3 Tbsp of vinegar for bright colors and I thought that sounded great, so we did, and man, do they stink...and the colors aren't even that vibrant. We started too late to allow them to dry and have Ethan put on the stickers before bedtime, so hopefully he can do that with Gamma tomorrow.

After all the kids were in bed, Andy and I found our gloves and played catch in the backyard. He even pitched to me and let me him them at 10%...I can't wait for my team's first practice on Wednesday night.

Really, a great of the best ones I've had in awhile! Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

4 Months!!!

Our babies are 4 months already...yesterday, actually. I can't believe it!!

We celebrated their 4-month birthday with a trip to the pediatrician for their 4-month well-baby check. Right on least I'm on top of something!!

I gotta brag...I went on my own. When I thought about it beforehand, I thought "Hey, no big deal...I can handle this...they are my kids, after all!"...but I didn't think about all the things you need to do at the Dr...get the kids undressed, carry them to the scale, entertain them for an hour while you wait for the doctor, feed them while you wait for the doctor, juggle them as you talk to the doctor, hold them still while the doctor looks at them, entertain them while you wait for the shot nurses, hold them still while the nurses give shots, get them dressed after shots, load them in and out of the car (without a doubt, the easiest task of the list...that should say something)...I went over the 2-hour range in the parking ramp and had to scrounge for coins in the car. I did not expect it to take that long. They crashed out right after the shots and Owen slept for 2 1/2 hours.

On to the appt recap...

They just got weighed for their RSV shot last week, so the weigh-in wasn't all that exciting. Dylan came in at 15 lbs 12 oz (15 lbs 4 oz, last week, I believe) and 24.5 inches long. Owen was 12 lbs 3 oz (which is weird because I could have sworn he was 12 lbs 6 oz last week and with his ravenous appetite for the rice cereal mush, I would not except him to lose weight...I would not expect him to lose weight without starting rice cereal...not worried, he's healthy) and 24.3 inches long.

There isn't much to report...they are really healthy. We've had a cold running through the little ones in the house so Owen had some visible congestion when the doc checked him out, but that's it. Most noteworthy are their percentiles...hold on to your hats!! These are actually adjusted for their due-date, so percentiles if they were 2 1/2 months, if I understand it correctly.


Weight: 50th
Height: 75-80th
Head Circum: 75-80th


Weight: 97th
Height: 90-95th
Head Circum: 90-95th

"He's your football player" the doc said as he read off Dylan's percentiles!! I say, "No, he's my Prop"...We play Rugby in this house (ok, just Daddy does so far)

These percentiles are also very indicative of how much Owen is like Ethan. Add 10 "percentiles" to Owen's stats and you have Ethan's...60th weight, 90th for height and head....long and lean, these two.


Owen is a's so cute. He flails his hand around his face, catches his thumb in his mouth, and then his other fingers are flat against his face. He typically uses the other hand to rub the back of his head. Ethan never sucked a thumb and grew out of the paci around 6 months so this is new to me, but so far, it seems to help him calm down quickly, and to sleep better, so no problem!

Speaking of sleep, we had a few nights in a row of 7 to 7 sleeping...Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Tuesday night they woke up at 1:30am and last night they woke up at 3am. Bottles and then back to bed until 6:30/7. Not a huge that we are consistently on the fast-flow nipples, feedings take about 10 minutes plus about 10 minutes of cuddle/upright time. We're back to bed and asleep in a flash. However, that being said, I (and I think I can speak for Andy here too!) would much rather just keep my cozy, warm self in bed until morning.

The past two nights it has been Dylan waking up and crying. I go into their room and see little Owen happily snoozing with his thumb in his mouth. I'm not sure if Dylan is waking up because he is hungry, or because he is uncomfortable...though he starts out in the middle of his crib, the past two nights he has been at an angle further up the crib, with his head pressed up against the crib slats. He's still all wrapped up in his sleep-sack and blankets, so I'm not sure how he gets up/over there still in tact, but he does...Houdini. It could also be the hunger issue though, as this one does not seem satisfied after 6 oz of formula and hates the rice cereal mush. We are considering getting some bigger bottles...but damn, those BPA-free bottles are expensive and we need to buy a lot since it stinks to wash bottles all the time and we already do wash them all the time with 12 bottles as is....listen to me rant.


The night we started rice cereal was the night I referred to Ethan as a two-terror, you know, the night when we considered putting him in the garage...just kidding...I only considered it for a second...just kidding...seriously. We made the rice cereal in one of Ethan's bowls, because we don't have bowls for Dylan and Owen only...nor do I think we will, we'll probably just buy more "kid" bowls. Ethan was sitting at the dining room table eating dinner and he turned around and saw that I was feeding the babies out of his Thomas Train bowl and made the most pitifully sad face, tears and all, and said, "They're eating my lunch!"


Last Saturday, before the trip to the Zoo, we decided to give Ethan a haircut. It's been awhile since he's had a "professional" haircut at Kids' Hair. Andy has done the last couple. The first went ok. He sat in his chair with his tray on (to keep him in place) and we sat him in front of the TV and he watched Cars. The two after that were a disaster...tears, screaming, hysterics...the result = a wonky haircut. I like his hair short...he looks cutest with a buzz I think. So on Saturday we tried every bribe in the world (I know, bad parenting) to get him to sit still so Andy could cut his hair. This whole ordeal took over an hour, with several trips to his room to calm down. During one of these trips to his room, Ethan was banging on the door so hard that something in the handle must have turned and it locked him in...from the inside. I tried not to panic, and neither Andy nor I said anything to Ethan about him being locked in. Andy just went to get a tool from the garage while I stayed by the door and talked to him. I tried not to think about what we would tell the locksmith when we called. Andy tried to pick it from the front, to no avail, and finally just ended up taking off the whole doorknob...he was free. Maybe the longer timeout worked, because after that, it was time for the haircut!! Ethan sat on Andy's lap on a chair with his favorite "softy" blanket and I sat on the floor and held his hand. Afterwards he said, "I didn't like it very much, but it was ok"...Then Daddy and Ethan took a shower and washed all the hairy clothes and blankets.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Not talking about Court yet...

Today was Court sentencing for Crazy. I don't think I'm going to write about it yet. I will say that it went "well"...and I think our family will be able to move on, and get some closure, at last.


Dylan and Owen started rice cereal last night. They just have it at bedtime so far, and then they have a bottle to follow. Surprisingly, Owen is much better at eating off a spoon and much more excited about the mushy stuff in general.

Have I ever mentioned that I married an amazing man?!

Where was I, you ask? I was tending to the tremendous two-terror that was Ethan last night. At one point, we considered putting him in the garage...just kidding. This morning, he was back to his charming self...telling me before I left for work, "I love you very much, Gummy"...Gummy is his name for me cracks me up. I have no idea where he got it from. Sometimes, it's Guppy. Don't ask me!


Another new development with Dylan and Owen is that they've started sleeping apart. We got a second crib (Thanks Mom and Dad!) and barely squeezed it into their room (we will switch the kids around soon!). They slept from 7 to 7 last night, and even napped in their cribs this morning (way to go, Gamma!) They really just didn't even fit in one crib together I'm glad that they seem to be ok with being apart...with twins, I just didn't know!

I just realized as I put Dylan back to bed (he was up after 15 minutes, screaming bloody theory is that he is teething and so I gave him a bit of Tylenol, let him chill in the swing for a bit, and then put him back in his crib when he was yawning), that I put D in bed tonight the horizontal way...and I was just about to do it again as I put him back to bed. Old habits die hard.


Poop talk straight ahead. I don't know what to do about these babies. I bathed them yesterday. Then they pooped all day today. So I bathed them again tonight. Liz got at least 3 blowouts, Gamma got a lot too, and I got one from D upon my return from Court. What a mess! Andy came home from work and said, "Does our house stink?"...yep, probably. I emptied the diaper genie again (just emptied it last night), but then realized I had a basket of dirty laundry on the table that was filled with poopy clothes...doesn't take a detective. Again, thank goodness for the prewash cycle!!


Andy is teaching Ethan to say funny stuff....for example, tonight he taught Ethan to say "Stop looking at me, Swan"...

And just a few minutes ago, he had Ethan repeating after him as he sung "We're going to win Twins"! Season Opener tonight, baby! Bring on the nights of cross-stitching during favorite way to relax! Ok, maybe add in a glass of wine.

My boys are cute...

Playing Superman!

And trading Twins hats!

**Jen Sand, if you are reading this, Happy Birthday! I didn't forget...just had a lot of stuff going on...Love ya!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Keeping busy this weekend...

Trying to keep my mind off tomorrow's Crazy sentencing as much as possible...Besides making my "Ethan" posterboard, I haven't thought about it much...


Andy and I find ourselves talking in "Ethan speak" sometimes. The most fun one lately is "some couple" or "some bunch" in, "I need some couple crackers"..."I need some bunch crayons"

Ethan is going through an anti-nap stage...I call it a stage because I refuse to believe that he doesn't need naps anymore at 2 1/ I wrong? Most days he just stays upstairs and has "quiet time" which, at least on the weekend days when I'm home to witness it, is not necessarily very quiet. Just as I started this post, he was up there yelling, "I do NOT want it to be quiet time" over and over. I went up and told him he could just play quietly with his stuffed animals then, but he couldn't come downstairs yet. That seemed to go over ok. I've tried to help naptime go better by taking out of his room his biggest distractions....books (which he was tearing apart page by page), toothpaste (which I had been leaving in there after nighttime brushing, but he was found eating it in his rocking chair), and cars/trucks (they are allowed at nighttime if he we don't hear him playing with them, but not at naptime)...he's rebelling still. Why is it that kids have to take mandatory naps and don't want to, but adults can rarely fit them into their schedules and REALLY want to?!

OK, I'm going to talk about poop again. These babies are flying through the outfits. Blowouts's astonishing, really. I don't recall having to deal with this stuff as much when Ethan was little...but perhaps the volume seems greater since there are two of them and someone is always pooping. We'd been using about 1oz of prune juice in every 24oz jug of formula we made, but they don't seem to have any issues staying "regular" so I think we'll nix that soon. I have, however, learned all about the "prewash" setting on our washer, and that's pretty cool.


Ethan and I made banana bread yesterday. He was actually very helpful. I used thawed frozen bananas again which Ethan calls "yucky bananas" and rightfully so. I use yogurt instead of buttermilk, but I didn't have any plain yogurt so I used strawberry. Andy said it was the most delicious banana bread I have ever must have been because of my little dude helping me...

Yesterday morning we went to the MN Zoo as a family. It was our first outing with the 5 of us. We have just recently allowed the twins out of the house...flu season coming to a close, the protection of the monthly RSV prevention shots, people's willingness to follow my hand-washing rules, and just the enormity of these babies - and we're feeling a little more comfortable with them joining the outside world. Most of these "adventures", as Ethan calls them, are with Gamma Leslie and Liz, but Andy and I decided this past week that we need take advantage of some free weekend time and have some outings lists can wait, let's have fun!

The babies were really difficult as you can see....

Ethan enjoyed seeing all the animals, and only had one toddler tantrum when we declined to stop twice at the playground and stand still in the cool MN "Spring" weather while he played forever.

A good time was had by all, and confidence that we can manage 3 kids outside our house has been gained (at least while 2 of them are sleeping!). Nonetheless, we were all tired afterwards.

Last night, we went OUT!! I'm playing on a co-ed slow-pitch softball team this Spring and last night the team went bowling. It was fun to meet the team and see my old high school teammate from who I heard about the team. Afterwards, we met up with some friends who had been watching the Final 4 games. We were out late, for us, and didn't get to bed until 1:30am! Thankfully, the babies slept until 7am and Ethan slept until 7:30am. We are so lucky to have such great babysitters, Anne and Chris, who Ethan adores. Dylan seemed to be quite smitten with Anne.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The one where I talk about poop...

Poop. It's everywhere. Why is it that the day you give the babies baths, they have huge blowouts, multiple times? I don't get it. I was working at home today in the basement, so I missed out on Dylan and Owen's blowouts, but I handled a toddler-sized one of my own.

Last weekend I put all my Facebook friends on the edge of their seats by putting on my status that I had just witnessed the grossest thing I have ever experienced as a parent. Stop reading now if you don't have a strong stomach...


I warned you....

Ok, Andy was feeding D & O before bedtime while I was eating dinner with Ethan. Dylan had finished and was ready to go up to bed so I came over and scooped him up. Andy said, "I think he farted or something, you might want to check"...."or something" is right. Total massive blowout, which I somehow didn't notice until it was all over the changing table, the onesie, the sleeper, his legs, feet....everywhere! I was perplexed...where to start?! While taking my sweet ol' time trying not to get it on me, I left his little man-part out in the breeze for too long and out came a perfect arch of pee....into his mouth. Ack! I know, it's sterile; people drink it in survival situations, but gag me. Nast.

Until today, that was one of the nastiest things I've seen as a Mommy. Today, I was upstairs having lunch, and Ethan was clearly taking care of business behind the rocking chair. When he finally emerged his pants were all wet down the back, so I took him upstairs to take care of it. Ahhhhhh! Everywhere...pants, legs, back, socks....Andy asked me tonight, "Why didn't you just take him to the potty?", no, no, it wouldn't have fit...I'm not sure a grown man could have produced such a disaster. Enough poop talk...but really, that was the nastiest thing I have ever seen as a parent. It topped puke...and I hate puke.


Lately I've been...hmm, how should I say....let's say "stressed." So Andy called me this afternoon and told me I should plan on getting out of the house tonight when he gets home from work. Go do something for myself. that's a thought. I told him I would need to brainstorm during the afternoon, but I would surely take him up on that offer. This is what I came up with....JoAnn Fabrics and Target. I know...pretty lame.

I've been wanting to get some fleece to make the boys blankets, so I took this opportunity to spend a small fortune at JoAnn's on fleece fabric so I can be artsy. I got the cutest prints...a woman next to me at the cutting table even asked if she could copy me, and she did. JoAnn's makes me feel like I am not nearly crafty enough and I want to buy everything in sight when I'm in there. I came up with some ideas of things to do with Ethan this Summer (painting a bird feeder to put in the Sunflower garden we are going to make!). But I managed to escape with just my fleece, some pins, and a piece of posterboard....$108.

Next stop...Target, where I spent another cool hundred or so. I was done with my Mommy time by 7:30. I decided to head home before I used up our entire checking account. I just can't think of much to do on my own...period...and anything I can think of, would likely end up in me spending money. When I got home, Andy was just putting Ethan to bed. He's the smoothest Dad in the World...3 kids - 2 babies and a toddler...the toys are put away, Ethan was bathed (blowout!), everyone is fed, kitchen is organized...don't they need me?! :>

Bedtime. My next topic. I guess I'm just in the Dr Weissbluth mindset about bedtimes...our kids go to bed early and typically get a lot of sleep (except when Ethan rebels against naptime!). So, when I see kids, young kids, at Target after dinnertime, I am totally confused...and kinda jealous! We aren't able to do errands with our kids after'd be a lot easier if we could...there are few times when we can run errands with them...and when we're not with them, we are usually too tired to run errands, or want to do something...gasp...that doesn't involve being responsible.

Our neighbors have a daughter who is about Ethan's age and we were so jealous when they told us when she was about 3 months that she slept through the night. Then it came out that she slept from 11 to 6 and that was "through the night"...When she started sleeping like a toddler, she was sleeping from 11pm to 10am. That doesn't work for our schedule. And while it would be really awesome to have more evening time with our kids, our house wakes up early, and when kids/babies need at least 10 hours of sleep, they have to go to bed early to get it. It stinks...there's little time to hang as a fam besides weekends. But Dr W says a well-rested home is a happy home, and after two nights of babies sleeping 7 to 5:45...I think he has a point.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Apr 1

Two years ago, April 1st was a Sunday. We spent the morning making chili, one of Andy's friends stopped by...then we called the Clinic again. We went to the ER, just in case. They diagnosed Ethan with gastroenteritis and admitted him so he could get an IV to get hydrated. They put a little cast thing on his arm so he wouldn't pull out the IV. I had to leave the room when they did it. I wasn't very tough back then.

We were up on the 4th floor. Andy's parents came by. His dad had just returned from China. I stayed at the hospital that night, and didn't sleep a wink. I opted to keep Ethan in the hospital bed with me instead of the cold-looking metal hospital crib. He only woke once, and fell back asleep when I put on a Baby Einstein video. I hate Baby Mozart. I haven't watched it since the following weekend at Children's Hospital.

Every seen the movie Paycheck with Ben Affleck? I'm really wishing that kind of technology existed today. Just zap out some memories here and there. Perfect.