Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Year in Review




Today is the last day of 2008, which will always be remembered as the year our twins were born! And the year of the white Christmas but that's secondary.We started the year off still living at our friend's place while we waited for the construction of our house to be completed. Around the middle of January I started working fewer hours as I was 30-something weeks pregnant with the twins and very miserable. On the 24th we celebrated my 39th birthday AND signed the closing papers on our house! Moving was interesting, as all I could do was sit and watch and direct where things went.The next month or so was spent getting the new house in order, particularly the nursery! I was completely off work by then so I was home all day, but even so I could only do a little bit each day because it was so hard to move. I also started having twice weekly appointments at the maternal/fetal medicine clinic (high risk ob) so that got pretty hectic. Finally, on the 28th, our girls were here! The next several months were just a whirlwind of sleepless nights and adjusting to twin parenthood. Eventually we settled into a routine, although it seemed to change every two to three months as they grew and their nap and feeding needs changed. We made several trips to Crescent Bar over the summer which was always fun. The girls loved the baby pool and we got some breaks of our own to hang by the pool or take the boat out while the grandparents watched them. Also, I officially became a stay-at-home mom as to put them both in daycare would have consumed almost my entire salary. I had always wanted to be at home, anyway, I just didn't think I had the choice. But fortunatly it has worked out and it is both a huge blessing and a dream come true!They are now 10 months old and I'm starting to plan their first birthday party! Looking ahead to 2009, I think I will have lots of fun taking them to the park where they will actually be big enough to play on some of the equipment, taking them to the library for story time, and hopefully getting to know some of the neighbors better and having play dates with them. There will be many more trips to Crescent Bar, and one in which Paul and I will leave them overnight with the grandparents while we go wine tasting in Walla Walla or the Yakima Valley. In August we'll be spending a week at the Oregon Coast. Before you know it, we'll be celebrating Christmas again and the terrible twos will begin...









Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The Twins' First Christmas!

As much as we all love Christmas, it can be rather stressful trying to get the shopping done, gifts wrapped, food bought and prepared, etc. Add to that two feet of snow (or close) and almost 10-month-old twins and, yikes! This was definitely my most stressful Christmas ever, but still very much enjoyed anyway. Christmas Eve was so chaotic! We hemmed and hawed (sp?) for several days about whether or not we could make it up to Mount Vernon for the family gathering, because of all the snow and icy roads. We finally decided we could, but then hemmed and hawed some more about whether we would have to spend the night up there or come home (depending on if we got more snow or if the roads were too icy, etc.). We really wanted to come back home so we could be here Chirstmas morning to enjoy a little family time before Paul's family arrived. But since we wouldn't be able to make that decision unitl we were already up there, we had to pack up as though we were going to stay. It took me from 5:00 am until 11:00 to get ready, pack for me and the girls, get them ready and everyone fed, make my fruit salad to take for dinner, etc. (and, no, we didn't stay). To add to the stress I had been snowbound since Friday the 19th so I didn't get to do my last minute shopping until the 23rd, but that was a bust, too. I started by going to the mall (HUGE mistake!) because I just wanted to pop into JCPenney to get my mom some earrings. It wasn't too bad until I tried to leave and it took me half and hour just to get out of the parking garage! (I also found out later that she can't even wear earrings anymore! All that trouble for nothing!) Then I had wanted to go to Target but the whole mall thing took so long that it was getting late, the girls were tired, cranky and hungry so I just went home. I had wanted to get a DVD for my nephew that I had already ordered online but hadn't shown up yet and some stocking stuffers for Paul. He only had one thing in his stocking becuase I never got the chance to get anything else.

Anyway, we left here around 11:00 with fed, changed and content babies due to nap anyway and luckily they did nap the whole way up there. First stop was Paul's cousins' where we hung out for about an hour, then it was on to my brother's house. We got there a little later than we wanted because some more of Paul's cousins had shown up right when we were about to leave. We got through dinner then had to rush to get the babies changed into their Christmas dresses and make it to church on time where they fussed and caused us to miss most of the service anyway. I would have just stayed at the house with them but I figured the car ride would be a great opportunity for a quick nap. After church we were finally able to relax a bit and just enjoy watching the girls open their gifts. Well, watch them watch us open their gifts! They had a ball but by the time we were getting ready to leave they were both screaming out of exhaustion and just being overwhelmed with all the new people (and/or people they just don't see very often). Luckily they fell asleep as soon as we were pulling out of the driveway. Unfortunately, however, in all the comotion of packing up all the gifts and two tired, screaming babies we left our camera behind, leaving all of the Christmas Day photo taking to Paul's parents and nothing yet to upload and post.

But in spite of all the chaos and stress, we had a great time visiting with seldom seen relatives and watching the girls play with Taylor, their second cousin (I guess--my niece's daughter) who is 11 months older. And Christmas Day was great in that we didn't have to go anywhere. Paul's parents and sister came over for the day, we had a great dinner, more gifts and lots of fun playing in the SNOW and building a snowman for the girls! I still can't believe we had an actual white Christmas!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Snowbound

Well, we made it through the storm without having to pack up and go anywhere. We never did lose power but we sure did have stong winds and lots of snow. Paul was supposed to go to work Sunday morning (for storm related overtime) but couldn't make it out of our alley because the snow was too deep. The main road in front of our house is ok but he couldn't get to it. So Sunday evening he parked his car on the main road instead of the garage so he would be able to get to work this morning. I've never seen snow this deep, except at a ski resort. I have to say I love it, but that's because I don't have to commute in it! I am starting to get a little cabin fever, however. We all went for a walk on Sunday but today I only left the house to get the mail. And I haven't driven anywhere since Friday. I always have so much to do around the house, though, that it doesn't seem to bother me as much as some people. I'm also very excited to actaully have an official white Christmas! I don't know if I ever have in my entire life. I know it has snowed on Christmas Day before but it never sticks. So cool that the babies' first Christmas will be a white one!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

More Snow

Things are getting interesting around here. We are supposed to get some pretty high winds tonight and there is a possibility of prolonged power outages in our area. Paul was worried about me and the girls being couped up here by ourselves with no power (he'd be working most of the time) so he thought we should pack up and head to my mom's just in case. Traveling anywhere with 10-month-old (almost) twins is NOT easy. At the very least we need both pack and plays, food, feeding supplies (spoons, bibs, bowls, etc.), clothes, diapers, wipes, toiletries, bottles, a bottle brush, burp cloths, changing pad, toys and the stroller. I spent the morning packing but then we decided that since the roads up there are so bad and it's kind of far (1.5 hours normally, probably a lot longer in these conditions) maybe we could stay at a friend's instead. So now we're just kind of waiting it out and we'll see what happens.

On the bright side, it's beautiful around here and we had fun the other day taking the girls for a walk and letting them play in the snow. We still want to go for a walk in the evening some time and see all the neighborhood Christmas lights. I really hope we don't have to take off and stay somewhere else between now and Christmas.


Our little snowbunnies

Sunday, December 14, 2008

First Snow and General Updates

We got our first snow this weekend and I just love it! It makes it feel so Christmasy. And since I've already been in full on Christmas mode making up for last year (see previous post), baking tons, watching lots of Christmas movies and listening to lots of Christmas music, it justs adds even more. The girls and I were all snuggled in our flannel pj's looking out the window at the falling snow and all the neighborhood Christmas lights (Paul, too, minus the flannel pjs). It was awesome.

In other news, it seems the girls have officially dropped to just one nap a day. I guess that's ok, because at least it's a pretty long one instead of the 20 minute naps they used to take. In addition, they've been sleeping in a little later, which is great, but then they end up staying up later, too, which is not so great. But they've been sick again (HOW do they get all these colds when they're not even in daycare? That's three since August!) so they've been waking up a few times during the night (usually within two hours of going to sleep, so it's not too bad. It's not like I'm getting up several times throughout the whole night) which contributes to their sleeping later, I think. So now instead of getting up around 7:00, they've been getting up at 8:00 or 8:30. This morning was the first morning in a year and a half or so (since before getting pregnant or at least early in the pregnancy) that I woke up fully rested. I was ready to get up and not just getting up because the babies woke up! It felt SO good!

This new routine, though, has thrown me for a loop. Their new nap time (11:00 or 12:00 to 1:00 or 2:00) overlaps their normal lunch time, so I'm trying to figure out if I should feed them lunch a little earlier and then put them down, or just feed them a late lunch and move their dinner time back a bit. I was just feeding them lunch when they got up at 1:00 or 1:30 or whenever, but the last few days they've slept in even later (8:30 today) so breakfast, nap, lunch--everything gets pushed back. Today Olivia took an extra long nap from 11:45 to 3:15 so I didn't give her lunch at all, just a bottle when she woke up, since it was so close to dinner time. I guess we'll iron it out once they get over this cold, start sleeping better at night and settle into a more consistent routine again.

Lastly, Olivia has finally pulled herself up! She's now all caught up to Kayley. Next stop: walking! Yikes!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Storm Before the Calm

Every now and then, we have a horrible, fussy, no nap, miserable day. Yesterday was one of them. Just when I thought Olivia was over the fussies because she finally started crawling, she was awful yesterday because she wanted to be standing all the time and she can't pull herself up yet! Then, they didn't take an afternoon nap and by 6:00 Kayley was a beast and Olivia not much better. We put them both to bed, and they crashed but then they were up until almost 10:00. The good news is that whenever they have a day like that, the next day is a dream! Today they went down for their first nap at 10:00, an hour earlier than normal. It's now 12:40 and they are STILL sleeping! That is unheard of. And look, I have time to blog! Anyway, they probably won't take an afternoon nap since they're sleeping so long, but I think that will be ok. They will probably just go to bed around 7:00 instead of 8:00ish. We won't be here anyway because Paul's parents are coming to watch them while we go do some Christmas shopping and go out to dinner. It'll be so nice to get out for awhile together!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Christmastime is Here

I am so loving the Christmas season already. Last year I kind of missed out. I was entering my third trimester pregnant with the twins and I was huge and miserable with horrible back pain. I could barely move or stand for any length of time so I didn't do any baking at all. Plus, we were staying at a friends house while we waited for our house to be built and he doesn't decorate and all of our stuff was in storage. So no tree, no lights, no baking. Luckily Paul's mom did lots of baking and sent plenty of cookies our way so at least we got our Christmas cookie fix! Anway, I'm really looking forward to making up for it this year. We already have our tree up and the house decorated (except outside) and I've already watched "Christmas Vacation" and "Serendipity" (not technically a Christmas movie but it has Christmas-y scenes). I can't wait to start baking but it's hard to find time during the day now that the twins are eating three meals a day plus several bottles and trying to get a walk in every afternoon. I'll get to it, though. And I'm going all out. I have several new recipes to try. Fun!