Sunday, May 28, 2006

Summer Time

To me, summer has always been bookended by Memorial Day and Labor Day. Maybe that is because those roughly corresponded with the end and beginning of school - or maybe because they so closely reflected the gradual warming to the summer's searing temperatures. Either way...this weekend was the kick off to summer.

So, to welcome summer, we pulled out the pool from last year. You know, those little inflatable ones that are $8 from Wal-Mart. We packed it up with us to take to Iowa this weekend since the forecast was 90 F. HOT. So we went, prepared.

Today, the forecast was right on. Daddy got the pool out this morning and spent the better part of the morning figuring out how to patch the hole in the bottom of the pool. But, he was successful, and the kids got to spend about 45 minutes outside after nap playing in the pool.

For fun - here's a picture of the kids last year about this time, in the same pool.

And, this year....

We have a little game we usually play with Tanner were we tease him about eating his "yucky toes" - he then promptly sticks them in his mouth, and giggles madly. Here they both are participating in the fun:

Morgan then got the bright idea that she could jump in the pool - much likes she likes to jump on the sofa - by jumping up and then pulling her feet out from beneath her:

It didn't take Tanner long to figure out that he did not want to be a part of this game:

I think we may have to invest in a larger pool for the rest of the summer....or at least something with higher sides.

Thursday, May 25, 2006


Tonight, as always, we turned on the radio station while we were getting the kids' pajamas on and ready for bed. As daddy was pulling out pajamas and diapers, the kids started "dancing. But, not just their typical dancing where they stand stationary and "bob" to the music (true to their very caucasion roots) - they grabbed each others hands and began twirling in circles. I have to admit - it was pretty cute.

And, here are the pictures to prove it:

And, my favorite:

Monday, May 22, 2006

Not a Drop Left

Randy & I can be not the most attentive parents. I think it comes from all of those years as being DINKs (Double Income No Kids). We're used to doing something without the disruption that two two-year-olds brings.

On Sunday, after doing a big Target shopping trip, we returned home right around lunch time. The kids needed to eat lunch, and we had food that needed unloaded. So, we started the kids on the oh-so-healthy Kids Cuisine meal that consisted of Taco Chips, little burritos, and cheesy sauce to dip it in. I added some applesauce for some redeaming nutritional value.

Then we started unpacking. We were in the kitchen - right we could hear, and we were loosly watching them while unpacking the bags. And, then I went to the table to check a little closer.

This is what I found....

And, I think he was quite proud of himself.

This is Morg-in

Morgan is cracking me up right now. She's really starting to put a lot of words together - and figuring out how to use them. Unfortunately, one of these words is "no", but we're trying to teach her the appropriate sound level to use that in (NO NO NO is not acceptable, but "no mommy" is).

Her latest thing is whenever she meets someone...or, she introduces herself by pointing squarely at her chest, dropping her head just a little bit and saying "this is Morg-in". When she says her name, it isn't doesn't come out as "Mor-gan", it's more a tin-ny sound - "Morg-in".

And to me, it's just about the cutest thing ever.

Friday, May 19, 2006

A Beautiful Spring Afternoon

Yesterday afternoon, I left work 20 minutes early and went home to my kids. Now, I usually get off at 4 p.m. - so I was home by 3:45. Within about 20 seconds of walking in the door, Morgan had her shoes in hand, and was bringing them to me "outside?" she asked with a hopeful smile on her face.

How could I tell her no - even though I was tired and really just wanted to sit in the recliner and relax? So, I told her "you need some socks to put on your shoes", and my little girl tore off to her bedroom saying "I need some socks, I need some socks" (notice her use of pronouns!). Thirty seconds later she was back with socks. Thirty seconds after that, her brother had brought me his shoes and socks, too.

It was a beautiful, quiet May afternoon. Seventy degrees, sun shining overhead, a slight wind rustling the tree leaves, and birds singing and chirping. The peace interrupted only by the occasional barking dog.

And we swang. Well, "we" didn't - they swang while mommy pushed them. I got to see the looks of pure joy on their little faces with the gentle back and forth motion. A smile that lit up their eyes - sparkling with the joy of being two. I didn't grab the camera, I absorbed the moment into my mind.

After about twenty minutes of swinging, Tanner was done. He wandered around our posh play area and was soon asking me for "more". Finally, I coaxed him into showing me what "more" meant, since I couldn't figure it out on my own. He wanted the bubbles.

As soon as the bubbles were out, Morgan was all done. She wanted in on the action. For another forty minutes, I blew bubbles while my children "ohhhh", "ahhhh", and "weee" at the delightful soap bubbles. They would chase after the bubbles until the were out of reach - or reach for the bubbles and then flinch as the bubbles would go POOF in their face. Smiles slyly returning as they would yell "POP". I too took the time to marvel at the little bubbles - watching them join together occasionally, or seing a twin bubble go by. Oogling the way that you could see the tension in the bubble and the swirl in the surface.

Many times in the rush of they day, I forget to take the time out to enjoy the little moments. They will only be two for a year. I get to experience twice the fun, and the joy of twins, but I only get to experience that unfound joy and the marvel in a child's eye one time. Unlike parents of singletons, I don't get to experience with my first child - and then appreciate it again a few years later as they get older. I only get to do that one time - so I figure I need to make sure I soak it all in while I can.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

You Must Be Mistaken

Oh my goodness, the pressure is on. And, why, oh why, is the pressure on!?!? Because, Lisa, Aiden's mom sent you over here to read something funny. Me, funny? No, I don't think so...I think it's my kids that are the funny ones.

Being the mom of twins has not been easy, and as I often point out to my husband, he better be glad we got two the first time, otherwise, I doubt that we'd be having a second. Maybe not, I don't think it would be this hard with one. For my evidence:

1. If we tell one child not to do something, the second one immediately decides that they, too, want to try the same thing. Like climbing on the sofa, smashing food in our fingers, throwing the toys, or eating the dirt.

2. Do you think either child will eat the same thing? No, of course not, they are TWO. I guess the only good thing about that is that Child #1 will usually eat what Child #2 will not, and vice versus. So, somewhere about 1/2 way through the meal, we do a plate swap (yes, for our transplant families out there, I know this is completely not hygenic - but these two share EVERYTHING already).

3. M-I-N-E. That is all two year olds really understand - they don't quite get the concept of sharing. Very difficult when you've operated under the philosophy of "just buy one, they can share it". I totally understand why some twin families have two of everything.

But, really, I do love being a twin mom - it's a novelty. Most people don't get to rock two kids to sleep, watch them play and interact so sweetly. Just last week, our neighbor, Sydney, came over to play. What I often dismiss as routine, Sydney's mom noticed right off - the way they play together. They were standing around the exersaucer, when Tanner hit the music button. They glanced at each other, and at the very same time, started dancing and spinning.

Most people don't get to see such an intense bond between two people - something that will hopefully last them their whole life. I attended a twin's club meeting last week - there were several sets of boy-girl twins there to my great excitement. And, they all said that their best friend was their twin. In fact, one girl twin had just moved back home because she was too far away from her twin brother. Thirty years old, talk every day...I don't have that relationship with my brothers, and I hope that my kids get to share that.

I often worry about whether or not Tanner's liver disease will affect their relationship. Do we give Tanner more attention / time because of his condition? Do we balance that for Morgan? Will she become the protector of her more "fragile" brother? Or will she resent the attention? I haven't quite figured out how to handle the healthy twin / sick twin phenomena. Undoubtedly, it will affect both of them.

Here are some of my favorite "twin" photos of my two....Lisa's favorite one is the double time out picture.


Tanner & Morgan - being held together for the first time - Morgan reached out & grabbed Tanner's hand. May 2004

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Tanner & Morgan after Tanner was home from the kasai. We would lay them side by side, but they'd always end up nose to nose. August 2004

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Fighting over a toy on the floor - April 1, 2005

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Hugs...September 2005

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A DOUBLE Time Out - December 2005

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Because it isn't all fun & games - January 2006

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Morgan pinning a kiss on Tanner - Winter 2005/2006

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Sharing books...March 2006

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Friday, May 05, 2006

We're Pregnant!?!?

I've been wanting to write this down for a long time, and since the kids are finally two years old, I think it's imperative I do it soon before I forget.

My husband and I had talked about kids since we were married in October 2000. Our goal was to wait until we had both attained our professional engineering license to get pregnant and have kids. Randy struggled to get his surveying license, and his quest for the PE was delayed. However, I tested for mine, as scheduled, in late October 2003.

Once the test was over, we decided to start trying. After all, at our age, it would most likely take at least 6 months to get pregnant. No stress, no hurry - we were still young.

In the middle of November, my friend Angie called and asked if I wanted to go have a beer after work. I thought yes, but what if I was just barely pregnant. That would be horrible. So, I decided to take a pregnancy came back with a very faint second line. I hadn't missed my period yet - I must be illisuing things. But, I didn't have a beer.

The next morning, I took another pregnancy test...just to see if the previous night was a fluke. Well, this time the second line was there, but it was even lighter than the night before. Surely a fluke, but a part of me just kept saying...hmmm....

So, the next morning (a Thursday), I took yet another pregnancy test. However, this time I had gone to the drug store and picked up a digital pregnancy test that would say "yes" or "no" versus trying to figure out whether the second line really counted or not. At around 5:00 a.m. that morning, I took the test...and viola, within 2 minutes, it said "yes".

I promptly ran into the bedroom where my husband quietly slept and pounced on him - we're pregnant. I don't think he believed the results, either. As he pointed out, "you promised me we'd have to try for at least 6 months..."

Poor guy....


First, one thing you must understand is that my kid's ADORE Baby Einstein. The first question out of their mouth in the mornings is "Einstein?", and they ask throughout the day. I'm hoping that all changse when we get them out of the house into a daycare.

The other day, Morgan brought me a Goofy book, she said "Einstein?"

"No, honey, that isn't Einstien."


"No, that is Goofy, not Einstein."

Then she very carefully took the book from my hands, and pointed to the corner where there was a little Disney insignia (about 1/2" wide) and said "Einstein!".

Then it donned on me, Baby Einstein is made by Disney, and each time we start the DVD, she sees the Disney logo.

Smart kid.

Where do they come up with this stuff?

This week, Morgan has been coming up and asking for Money. Strange from a kid who's parents almost exclusively use plastic.

Monday, May 01, 2006

A Letter to My Two Year Olds

Dear Tanner & Morgan,

Yesterday you both turned two years old. It is so hard to believe that in the blink of an eye - you're no longer my babies. You are very independent little people - who have their own likes and dislikes, and their own way of doing things.

I look back to where we started this process two years ago, and I find it nearly impossible to believe how tiny you very fragile. I remember the nurses telling us how even touching you would hurt you - and now we rough house with you on the living room floor, tickling you until you cry out "all done".

This past year you have changed so much. A year ago, you had just started crawling, Morgan, and Tanner you were still stationary - content to let Morgan barrel around you. Today, you are both running...nonstop. Climbing the stairs, jumping on the sofa - all of the things that two year olds are supposed to do.

Morgan, you are still my indepedent child. You will sit and work on something for long stretches of time until you figure it out. When you are in your concentration mode, you stick your little tongue out to the side - just like mommy does when she's concentrating. It makes me laugh that you would pick up such a small trait that is so distinctly me. Your little wheels turn every minute of the day - and we find it very humurous when you use your wit. You know that you are not allowed to take a toy out of your brother's hand, so when he has something you want, you start to point at things and say "look!" until you find something he wants. And, when he puts down the toy you wanted - you run and snatch it up before he changes his mind. You are a very determined little girl.

Tanner, you are the sweetest little boy that could have been placed on this earth. You do not like to see anyone in distress, and when someone is hurt, you try to find a way to comfort them. Sometimes this comes in the form of a giant Tanner hug - a hug where you run, throw yourself in the person's arms, plant your head on their shoulder, wrap your arms around their neck and squeeze. It's hard to believe that such a comforting hug comes from such a small little guy. And, when your sister is concerned, you always try to find a way to comfort her. You will often bring her Prayer Bear when she is distressed - anything to make her feel better. Your tenderness amazes me.

I love to watch the two of you interact - it's one of those unique things that twin parents get to enjoy. I've seen everything from full blown punches, kicks, and bites -to unprovoked kisses and hugs. You reserve a love for your twin that many of us will never know. Tanner, even though Morgan may not show it, whenever you are out of her sight, she calls out for you "Tanner, Tanner" until she sees you again. Morgan, your brother shows his love each and every day...whether through a hug or bringing you your beloved Prayer Bear, he is always trying to make you feel better. I hope that this love continues to grow, and you will continue to protect each other - especially when Mommy & Daddy cannot.

It has been a fun year to watch you grow and learn. To watch you master the milestones that we one time wondered if you would make. To think about the future and what our little people will end up doing. I look forward to the next year - listening to your speech grow, watching you build your confidence, and letting you start to stretch your wings.

Just promise...don't grow up too quickly on me...


Tanner at birth, 2 lb 3.1 oz....

Tanner at 1 year old.....

Tanner now...

Morgan then at 2 lb 3.3 oz....

Morgan at 1 year old....

Morgan now....

My rant & rage

Well, the twins birthday has come and gone....I can't believe that my babies are 2 years old already. Or, how far they've really come. Born at a whopping 2 lb 3 oz, they are about 23.5 pounds now (Morgan weighs 1/2 pound more than Tanner). At birth, 13" - now they are about 33". So BIG.

I promise to post a happy post about the birthday soon, but right now I'm dwelling on the not good. What really sucks and makes me the most mad this all goes back to my mom & dad's car accident from shortly after the kid's birth. My mom is a T3 (I think) parapalegic from that accident - she basically can't feel anything from the breast bone down. Now, thank goodness she has movement in her arms and stuff, but that's about it. So, this means that she doesn't know when she needs to urinate - so she has a catheter to take care of the urine. This works fine - most of the time. But, yesterday her leg bag (for the catheter) got too full and the leaked. So, she had to go home much earlier than we had originally planned so that she could change clothes and so much.

It makse me really sad that mom couldn't spend the day with us. We don't get to see her that often, and when we do, it's still not the same. Instead of going out and doing things - we hang around the house. It's all fine - it's just not the SAME. I miss going shopping with my mom - going out and doing fun things. I hate the fact that my kids won't get to know that grandma - the one who would have come down and taken them off our hands for a few hours here and there.

And, when I start thinking like that, it makes me very angry. I don't think there was any justice in the way that the kid was treated after the accident. He completely changed my mom & dad's life - and he never spent a day in prison. I know it was an accident, but the accident could have been avoided if he hadn't been out drinking the night before, he wasn't still hung over, and he had gotten any sleep. And, why can't he at least apologize. He didn't just completely put mom & dad's life in upheaval - but he screwed with all of our lifes as well. I hope he thinks about it everyday - I hope when he sees his mom playing with his kids - that he realizes my mom doesn't get to play with my kids. I hope there is a special kind of punishment for him somewhere down the line...

I am GRATEFUL that my mom still has the use of her arms. She is so incredibly talented, and at least she still has this creative outlet. Since we needed an egg free birthday cake, Grandma made it. And, since our current favorite thing as a 2 year old is Elmo...this was the end result.

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Now, since the head and fish are 100% sugar, we decided not to let the kids eat it. But, I couldn't bring myself to throw it away after all that hard work. So, we now have a decapitated Elmo & a fish residing in our freezer.

Thanks, Grandma. We love you.