My Turkeys

In the spirit of Thanksgiving I wanted to post why I am thankful for each of my children.  I spend lots of my day being frustrated or overwhelmed by them and I think it that it is good to stop and remember why they are so special to me.

My firstborn.  She made me a mom.  I am so thankful for her quick wit and wise insight.  Friends used to tease us that we read her a dictionary at bedtime because of her word choices.  She uses words in context that most 1st graders do not dream of using.  I am thankful for her tender heart and compassion.  I am thankful for her studious side and her drive to do the right thing.  She is at the age where it is fun to go out "just us" and we have a great time together. 

I am thankful that someone in the house gets that scaring people is THE FUNNIEST THING EVER

Baby girl.  She made me a "real mom" (as in you aren't a real mom until you have 2 kids).  I am thankful for her enthusiasm.  She has lots of energy and always gives it 100%.  I am thankful for her independence.  She is happy to try new things and has no problem leaving mom to be with friends.  I am thankful for her willingness to lend a hand.  99% of the time when I ask for her help she gladly gives it.  She is the perfect partner for our mornings at home. 

I am thankful that someone around here also understands that bad smells must be identified and taken care of immediately!

The first boy to make me a mother of boys.  I am thankful for his independence.  He is easily entertained as long as he has room to crawl and things to discover.  I am thankful for his good naturedness.  I never thought I would be posting that!  He has turned from an angry little infant to a happy/smiling/giggling boy.  I am also thankful for his love of sleep. 

The first to make me a mother of a child with 47 chromosomes.  I am thankful for his joy and enthusiasm.  This boy RADIATES joy.  Of course he has his sad angry moments too but most of the time he is a ray of sunshine.  I am thankful for his cuddliness.  Boogie was a cuddler and Baby and Buddy are NOT.  There is nothing quite like baby cuddles to make you feel better. 

I am thankful for all of my kids and how being their mother has made me into a better version of myself.  I know I still have plenty of room to grow and I am sure I will get lots of practice. 

And in the spirit of thankfulness, go read this beautiful post made up of pictures of children with down syndrome and why their families are thankful for them.  You may recognize a certain boy.


Buddy at 8 Months

Buddy rarely smiles for the camera.  He is always looking for mommy's face behind it.  He was in rare form yesterday!

Where to start?  This is my active little guy.  He wants to be on the move!  He has no time for hugs, kisses, tricks.  He just wants to crawl around and get into things.  He is still not crawling with his belly off of the floor.  I am going to have him practice on some stairs to get his cross patterning down when we are at my parents on Thanksgiving (they have carpeted stairs).  My reason for this is that he has started pulling to stand lately and I do not want him skipping his developmental steps.  Crawling should come before walking.

He continues to charm the masses.  He is a total flirt and is constantly trying to divert attention from Bunny back onto himself.  I actually believe this will be a good trait for him to have.  I don't want my precious boy to get lost in the shuffle.

Still no teeth but I can see them all right there.  His gums are no longer smooth but nice and bumpy.  I can also see an eye tooth coming in.  It looks like we may have marathon teething.

His favorite word is mama.  Melts my heart.

He is very curious and has a talent for hunting out the things I don't want him to get into.

He is such a peanut.  He weighs 18 lbs now.  The jeans in the picture above are 6 months.  The waist is HUGE on him but the length is almost short.  I don't think he will ever be chubby because he is already so active.  I was trying to get a picture of his plank.  He often goes into a plank from this position.  The boys wants to run I swear!

I wanted to show you his very long guitar ready fingers.  This thrills daddy to no end.  He has great guitar playing plans for this boy and since Buddy already seems to love the guitar it should be a natural fit.  He loves to make any kind of noise with his fingers.  There is a cardboard box in the boys room and he loves to sit and drag his fingers across the box to make noise.

And I have to be on constant watch for this.  He wants to eat everything!  Do you know how hard it is to keep the floor clean when you have 4 kids?  He is quite a piggy. 

He looks balder this month but he actually has lots of fuzzy hair it is just super light in the sun.  Like Bunny, we all love this boy to death.  The girls love that he can sit with them now.  They volunteer to be the one to sit behind him to make sure he doesn't fall.  He doesn't really need that anymore but I love that they want to help.

Both boys are the perfect addition to our family.  We are so lucky to have them!

Bunny at 8 Months

It's hard to believe my boys are 8 months!  I feel like I just wrote their 7 month post!

Bunny of course continues to be a delight.  This boy just radiates joy.  I love that when he sees me his face completely lights up and he does a happy yelp.  It makes dragging myself to his bed at the crack of dawn (6:30am on the dot) totally worth it.

He doesn't have many new tricks this month but one new thing he does is that when I lean my face towards his he reaches his chubby little paws towards my face and pats my face.  I love this!  He also LOVES hands and always wants to grab people's hands.

Both of my boys have been eating solids for a few months but I am definitely more cautious with Bunny.  Because he is not sitting on his own I don't put him in a high chair yet.  I think we are almost there though.  He is doing much better at sitting in a supported position.  In fact, we have started putting the Bumbo in the middle of the table with him in it at dinner time so he can be part of dinner (Don't worry he is not left unattended! ha )

He definitely has food preferences.  He has decided he no longer likes squash and when I try to feed it to him he turns his head into his seat so I can't give it to him.  I have to mix it with fruit.  I think it's because it is so bland.  He likes lots of flavor.  I'm hoping that we can get some help with his eating.  He still slurps his food off of his spoon so I am nowhere near comfortable trying anything but purees at this point.

I finally managed to weigh the boys the other day and Bunny weighs 15 lbs.  The 3 lb difference is sticking.  It crackes me up.  They were EXACTLY three pounds apart when i weighed them.

Most of Bunny's days are spent on his belly babbling about this and that.  He loves to yell.  If I get down at his level and yell back he gets so happy.  He gets peek a boo now and loves to play peek a boo.  He will sometimes hide his eyes and I haven't been able to figure out if he is doing it intentionally or not yet.

He's still working on scooting but he does roll around.  He loves toys with lights and bright colors.  Buddy tries to steal whatever toy Bunny has.  Thankfully, we have been working for months on Bunny's grasping and he can hold his own.

We all just love this boy to death. (Well except maybe for Buddy who is jealous of any ounce of attention that his brother gets.  He better get over that fast!)

Conversations with Boogie

(Today right after we picked her up from school)

Me:  How was school?

B: Good.  A second grade boy was admiring me.

Me: Admiring you?

B:  Yes.  I fell on the playground and he came over and asked if I was okay and if I needed help up.  I said no.  Then he just stood there admiring me.  I don't know why.  Well, I do have really soft skin.

Me:  Was he cute?

B:  MOM!  I said he was admiring me!  I was NOT admiring him.  He asked me if I needed help.  I am perfectly capable of getting up myself though.  Maybe he was admiring how strong I am.

My Life in Pictures

The shirt says it all


Efficiency is Overrated

So imagine my horror when I pulled into the Target parking lot yesterday and saw an employee dragging a huge line of carts with him into the store.

Why is this horrific you ask?  I know...it sounds efficient.  But here's the thing, I have 2 baby car seats to get inside the store.  I can no longer carry these 2 car seats at one time because the boys are so big!  I think together with the car seats it's about 50 lbs.  50 lbs that is moving and kicking. 

There is also a curious and enthusiastic 4 year old thrown into the mix who needs a hand to hold to safely make it through a parking lot where big suv's are looking for a spot.

My usual plan of action is to find a spot near the cart holders and grab a cart and load up the boys and walk in, pushing the cart with one hand while grasping the hand of said 4 year old.  However, thanks to the above mentioned employee all the cart racks were empty yesterday.  I stood outside of my van helplessly racking my brain for an idea.  I could put the boys in their stroller but then I would be pushing a stroller and dragging a cart.  No good.

Then I saw my plan.  An older lady was walking out with her cart and her car was fairly close to mine.  I decided I would ask her for her cart.  I was nervous though because I didn't want to just run up to her and freak her out.  She was concentrating pretty fiercely on getting her bags in her trunk.  So as nonthreatening as I could I made my way to her and asked if I could take her cart.

I think she thought I was trying to earn a girl scout badge or something because she said "Oh I was just going to walk it back inside because I need to use the restroom"  I again explained that I had twins in the car and needed it and she agreed to let me have it.  I'm not sure if she ever understood what I meant and I was secretly hoping she would see me in Target and it would click.

It's pretty funny the systems that I depend on to be in place just so I can have a successful shopping trip!

Photo Shoot Fail

Somehow I have a knack for choosing the worst time for a photo shoot.  As the days get darker, our house gets less and less light so I wanted to go outside today.  Bad idea.  The grass was muddy.  The boys were grumpy.  And I used my stickers and can't reuse them.  Oh well.  I'm just going to put them in the same outfits and try again dangit!

I put their stickers on the back so they couldn't pull them off and slobber them this month.  I was going to find a creative way to get the sticker and their face but the boys just weren't having it.  I still think this is cute because it shows how different they are!  Bunny looks way shorter here but Buddy is down further so it looks more dramatic than it is.
But mom you can't see my handsome face!
Look I finally sit for a few minutes!
Hey!  I'm over here!
I'm not sure this is a good idea mom
Clap! Clap! Clap!
Are we done yet?  I'm hungry!
....and over it!
 I'm sure the neighbors appreciated the show I was putting on.  I was on my belly with my butt in the air (because the blanket is small and the grass was muddy!).  I was singing "How much is that doggy in the window" with volume and enthusiasm.  Oh well.  I'm sure we will have better luck a different day.  I need some gorgeous smiles from my boys!


My Life in Pictures

Homemade finger paints thanks to Pinterest.

See?  Pinterest makes me a more fun mom.  It must be a good thing

(And yes I am making my kids "finger paint" with brushes.  So sue me)


Unusual Uses

Bunny's teacher and I have been searching for something to use under his tummy in order to encourage him to bear weight on his arms and get his buns off the floor.

Is this what you want me to do mom?
Yesterday she came over all excited because she had thought of using a yoga mat.  The roll is fairly soft and the texture of the mat is grippy for his toes.  Fortunately, being the home workout freak that I sometimes tend to be, I had one in a closet somewhere. 

I like to sit behind him and put some toys and the mirror in front of him and then get his weight on his knees.  After I do it a few times he does it himself.  His butt is in the air up above.

Of course he has to do superman on his new toy too.  I just let him do it a few times then put his hands back on the ground and encourage him to bear weight on his arms again.

"I don't need the roll to help me mom!  I got this!"

Buddy's New Tricks

Buddy seems to learn tricks in threes.  The video is 2 tricks rolled into one.  "So Big" and Peek a Boo.  His third trick is that today he pulled to a stand.

I was crouched on the floor talking to Bunny and he crawled up to me and got to his knees and then on his feet by holding on to my back.  I am not ready for this development.  He is a little crazy daredevil and not cautious.  He just gets excited and does things and then gets hurt.  The one thing I have on my side is that he is so tiny I doubt he can reach the couch to pull up.  We moved the coffee table out of the family room months ago in anticipation of this day.  Phew!

Oh and I'm lying because he also waved good bye to Bunny's teacher yesterday.  He has never waved to me little flirt!!

Also, he can sit quite well now when he is in the mood.

Please notice his big Bugs Bunny feet.  I know it i partly the angle but he does have big feet.  (I still keep a puffy blanket behind him just in case)

Boooring!  On to walking!
Tomorrow is the boy's 8 month birthday!



You'll notice my last post was last Friday night.  What happened on friday night that has kept me from posting all week?  I received my Pinterest invitation.

My sister has been talking about Pinterest for months and I have been trying to avoid it.  I know myself and knew that I did not need another distraction in my life.  BUT I was reading through one of my forums the other day and some of the moms were sharing their Pinterest Christmas wish lists for their kids.  I have used other apps for that in the past but it seemed really easy to use and so I took the plunge.

And then I was glued to the computer all weekend.  My mom had my girls this weekend so I had lots of extra time on my hands.  I know that sounds crazy because I have twin babies but besides the feedings they are pretty easy.  Buddy is active and into everything but Daddy was home to help me keep him out of trouble.

I made a bunch of green, non toxic cleaners for the house.  I have been wanting to do this for awhile so  was happy to find so many things in one place with lots of pictures!  (I am a visual girl)  I was especially excited about the non toxic laminate cleaner.  I had been avoiding cleaning the family room laminate because Buddy is all over that floor and I knew that the Swiffer cleaner I have is full of chemicals.  I am a happy girl.  The floors look great too!  Tonight I used my homeade dishwasher soap for the first time.  We'll see if it works!

My other obsession is ideas for the house.  There are so many creative DIY ideas on there!  I already found a project for the huge wall in my family room.  I just never found the perfect piece to put there and now I know exactly what I want to make.  I seriously have found something for every room in the house.  When we moved in I was in my first trimester with the boys.  We did the major changes but I just never had the time/energy/inspiration/ideas to put the finishing touches on our house.  Now my mind is swirling with ideas. 

Most of the things I want to do are projects (like repainting the cabinets in my laundry room) which means I need Daddy's help.  SO today I decided we need to start with the garage.  If I butter him up by helping him organize the garage and making a nice man cave for him out there then he will hopefully be more willing to help me.  Oh and I will have a nice neat and tidier garage.  Win win.

There is seriously something for everyone on there.  If you haven't taken the plunge you really should.  It makes searching for things really easy.  It's like google with no ads or scams and lots of pictures. 

Tomorrow I will post a video of Buddy doing "So Big!"  It's his new trick. 


Date Night

Bunny was not the only evaluation we had today.  I also had a parent teacher conference with Boogie's teacher. 

I'm pretty sure that the conference went a lot like a conference with my teacher would have gone in 1st grade.  Except Boogie is slightly less shy than I was.  She got glowing reviews and a near perfect report card so we went on a date to celebrate. 

She picked fro-yo and when I was distracted she loaded on the toppings.  She ate about 4 bites before she said she would save the rest.

It's fun for me to bend the rules sometimes and let her stay out past her bedtime and eat a little sugar.  We had a lovely chat about school and she assured me she will keep working hard.  I'm so proud of my little student!

My Life in Pictures

No school means "Haircut Day!"

Evaluation Day

Today Bunny had his 8 month evaluation. We don't get the "scores" back for a few weeks but I know he needs the most help in gross motor.  One of the up sides to Bunny having a twin brother is that I have a better idea of how far he is behind his "typical" peers.  Seeing them together doesn't leave much room for me to be in denial.  I'm not going to get the test back and freak out.

His evaluator and I talked about getting Physical and Occupational therapy for him which makes me happy but we won't even get that ball rolling until we have the meeting with his social worker which is next month.  And then who knows how long it will take beyond that.  Frustrating. 

I will say that I am LOVING his new teacher.  I'm pretty sure she is green but she is so loving and she is determined to help him.  She has actually been reading Gross Motor Skills in Children with Down Syndrome.  Imagine that. (I doubt his last teacher had heard of it)  She has also been searching you tube for videos to help him.  I love her enthusiasm.  Bunny loves her too.

**Side note: When I searched Amazon for that just now I found this.  I've never seen it before and it is going on my Christmas wish list!**


My Life in Pictures

Spike is back

Real Golden

My girl is very proud of her medal.  She won it in her walk-a-thon for being one of a group of 6? first grade girls to win for most laps.  I'm sure they were all walking together which is why they all got the same.

She was so excited about it and when I was telling my mom on the phone she said "Tell Grandma it is REAL golden!!!"

Sneaky Sneakers

It seems that every time we have a busy weekend we pay for it for days.  I am still catching up from this weekend.  We had 3 parties and 2 Halloween events and I'm exhausted!  The boys are completely off schedule too which makes for very long days.

I took a bunch of pictures of the girls this weekend and while I won't post them all I do want to share a few.  The one of Baby goes perfectly with the story I am going to tell you.  But before we get to that I need to post a picture of Boogie.

She was a Southern Belle (because it was the fanciest costume no doubt) and as soon as I brought out the camera she brought out her poses.  I have no idea how this girl and I share DNA.  I am NOT like that at all!  I have about 10 more poses of her.  This girl definitely has a future in the entertainment industry.

Now the story:

One of our events was a Fall festival.  It was at a nearby church and seemed easier and less scary for the girls.  They had games set up and a cake walk.  The girls have never done a cake walk and spent a good time trying to win cakes.  Boogie won none (she has mommy's luck) and Baby won 2 (Uncle's luck). 

The cakes were sitting on our counter and I noticed mid afternoon that they were both open and there was quite a bit of frosting missing.  I caught Baby in the act earlier in the day but it seemed like a lot more was missing.

I was mentioning this to daddy at the dinner table and the truth came out:

Boogie:  Okay.  I'll just tell you the truth.  When Baby and I were playing in the playroom one of us would come ask you a question and the other one would swipe frosting. 

(WHAT!!  I couldn't stop laughing)

Daddy:  Ya mommy is pretty easy to trick.

Me:  I have 2 babies to distract me!  And don't worry.  Mommy will get the last laugh when I throw away your cakes tonight!  hmmpphh

And that is just what mommy did.  Little stinkers!!!!