Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Mason Says

When I leave Mason with Elliot and Finnley to go to another room, he is very reassuring to them. Last week when they were all in the bath, Mason asked me to go get one of his trains. As I left the bathroom I heard him say, "Hi, babies. Mom's getting Diesel (the train). Here comes mom!" Yesterday I left the three upstairs for a few seconds to grab some diapers and heard Mason say, "Hi, sisters. Mom go downstairs." I came up and thanked him for keeping his sisters company. He promptly gave them each a head hug. You know, when he wraps his arms around their heads.

At dinner one day Mason put his hand in his glass of water, pulled it out and declared, "My fingers are all wet!" Well, yeah, of course they are! Silly.

Mason likes to read books. AKA make up the story as he's flipping the pages. Last week he was reading a magazine. "One day, there were three buses and trucks. One day boats sat on top of the sea. One day... the end." He also uses "Once upon a time" a lot.

Monday, April 22, 2013

How Many Earths Would We Need?

Happy Earth Day!
I don't know about you, but I am constantly finding ways to be kinder to our planet. Sometimes, I get lazy and take the easy way out, but I do try hard to keep our planet a nice place, mostly since becoming a mom. Before that, I was selfish and didn't care too much how big my ecological footprint was. Now that I know my kids (and following generations) will have to live with the Earth the way we leave it, I'm concerned. I'm concerned in a lot of ways and could write pages and pages on such topics. I'll save that for another day.
Some of the Earth-friendly things we do:

  • Cloth Diaper.
  • Use family cloth/cloth napkins/towels instead of paper towels.
  • Our meat/dairy consumption is very low. We even ate plant-based for 3 months.
  • When given the choice, we choose local. Hard to do in the winter months though.
  • If it is nice and we aren't travelling far, we walk.
  • We consume minimal processed foods.
  • I shower every other day at max. The kids share a bath, 1-2 times a week.
  • We painted our house with VOC-free paint.
  • Our old/unwanted items go to Goodwill, not the garbage can.
  • We also buy a lot of things second hand. Mostly clothes and toys.
  • We avoid chemical use (personal care items, cleaning products, plastic storage, lawn and garden care, etc).
  • In the nicer time of the year, I try to line dry our laundry.
My motivators! Yeah, yeah, another bath picture.

We are far from perfect. I took a quiz to find out my ecological footprint and found out if everyone lived like me, we would need 3.2 Planet Earths. Yikes!

One thing we could definitely improve on is recycling! Our town doesn't have a recycling program so if we want to recycle we would have to sort and haul our own stuff and that happens rarely. Compared to our neighbors on trash day though, we really have very little trash.
Just remember, reduce and reuse come first. Know that recycling is last resort and probably not as effective as you assume. Buy in bulk or choose your packaging wisely. Bringing your own bag to the store is NOT the same as choosing plastic bags and then recycling them later. I think too many people think recylcing is the solution to all our problems. If you are one of those people, I highly recommend the documentary Bag It. If you aren't one of those people, still, watch the movie!
We could also improve by:

  • Actually remembering our reusable bags when we go shopping.
  • Finding local, grass-fed/pastured meat and eggs. Currently working on this!
  • Planting a successful garden. Not knowing where we will be living soon, this one is going to be hard this year.
  • Keeping our house a little less comfortable in the summer months. We like it cool.
You should take the quiz, find it {here}.
How many Earths would it take if everyone lived like you? I want to know!
What are some things you want to improve on?

Sunday, April 21, 2013

I'm Free!

Wow, it is 10:12pm Sunday evening and I have managed to make it to the computer (going on 10 minutes now). For the last couple weeks after I put the girls in bed for the night, they haven't let me leave without waking up and crying. Nap times are eerily similar. They literally have to be touching me all night long. I feel like I'm on vacation right now.
Since typing words takes a long time, I'm going to go ahead and just throw some photos from our week at you!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

3 Fun Things For Your Car Lover

If your toddler loves cars/trains/trucks/etc. as much as mine, here are three things you can "make" today to add a little spice to their play. Who knows, one of these might even keep them occupied for more then 5 minutes, and we all know how hard that can be. These projects couldn't be easier, so make your kid's day and give them something new to play with.

Grab a bunch of books off the shelf, similar thickness works best, and line them up. If you have a boatload of books like us, you could probably create a super highway that runs all over your house.

We use a melamine shelf as our ramp, but you could easily use something else. A flattened box, a 2x6, a suitcase, a clothes basket turned upside down, couch cushions, any of these would work fine. Lean it against something and slide the cars down.

Grab a cereal box, a shipping box, a box of any kind really, and cut a hole in it. Easy. If for some reason you can't find a box I'm sure there are other recyclables lying around you could turn into a tunnel. You could use a toilet paper roll if you have really small cars to play with. You could tape a paper bag to the bottom of a chair and cut a tunnel through it. Get creative!

You could even combine all three of these things. What fun that would be! Now, go play cars.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Tender Moments

Watching your first baby interact with your second baby. What a special moment. Their eyes are locked, staring deeply into one another's soul. The baby strokes big brother's face, he smiles. Your heart is filled to the brim watching this special moment unfold.

Then he pokes her in the eye.

And.. she cries. Moment over.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Mason As A Big Brother

We are enjoying watching Mason develop into a loving big brother. Like with most other aspects of bringing home twin babies, the beginning was a little rocky. Mason's world was turned upside down, suddenly, nonetheless. He spent the three nights we were in the hospital at home sleeping with "Gran-fart" and "Boppa", coming to visit us for a little bit each day. When we returned home, there was a lot of baby care taking place and little time for playing with our then 22 month old. Naps were hit or miss (mostly miss), which just set us up for even bigger challenges.

 When I refer to those first few months of the girls' lives as being rough, Mason is also a factor in this. He was used to being the center of attention, and while we still wanted to give him all he needed, that was pretty impossible. Those first couple months there was WAY more TV viewing than I ever thought I would allow. We were in "survival mode" and just tried to make it though the day (and night)!
In the beginning, Mason would have moments of pinching the baby's face and doing other not so nice things. It was (and still is) important for us to remember he isn't trying to be mean. He is simply a toddler with complicated feelings, not yet sure how to express them. He still has moments of ramming tractors into their heads or pushing them out of the way to build more train tracks, but he is learning kinder ways to express what he wants.

He often comes up to Elliot and Finnley when they are in their exersaucers or jumpers and wraps his arms around their heads to give them hugs. He also enjoys group hugs and giving kisses every once in a while. Sometimes he will give a toy to one of them to play with. But, most of the time, he takes toys away. I'm not sure where he learned the whole claiming "Mine!" from, but he sure picked it up somewhere! Classic sibling lingo, no?

When he goes to bed at night, it is very cute hearing him say, "Goodnight sister Finn. Goodnight sister Elliot." Finnley and Elliot absolutely love watching Mason. If he is playing, jumping, running, talking, their eyes are on him. It is going to be so much fun seeing them all interact together as they keep growing!

How did your older children handle gaining new sibling(s)?

Friday, April 5, 2013

I Have A Confession

Here it is.. I can't stop taking pictures of my kids in the bath.
I don't know what it is, but when they are all in the tub, I snap away and can't stop.
I think it could be because they are all contained in one spot and can't move that much. This happens rarely, so I can get them all in the same picture. Plus, how cute are all those rolls? I could probably fill a photo album with just bath pictures.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

6 Months

Can you believe it? Halfway to a year already! I've said it before and I will say it again, those first few months were ROUGH. They felt like an eternity. Time went by especially slowly. But once things started getting easier and we all figured out this having three kids under three thing and basketball season got over with, we started back on track with warp speed. And now, my tiny babies are 6 months old!

Okay, maybe not so tiny. Elliot weighs 17lbs, 8oz. Finnley weighs 18lbs, 6oz. Still about a pound difference between the two. Size 9 month clothes have gotten pretty snug, so we on to the 12 month clothes. These gals are rolling every which way, crawling backwards, learning to sit with help, and aren't showing any signs of slowing down. Before we know it, they'll be everywhere!

Our routine goes about like this..
Up at 6:00, on average.
Naked time on the floor (on the blanket).
I leave to pee.
1 minutes later I come back, both babies have rolled off the blanket and pooped on the floor.
...Okay, this doesn't happen every day, but it sure seems like it does!...
Dad and Mason get up around 7.
Get diapered and dressed, Mom and Mason eat breakfast, Dad gets ready for work. Elliot and Finnley play on the floor.
8ish-Mason watches one of his shows on TV while I take the gals upstairs to feed/rock/put down for a nap.
8:45-Nap ends, yeah, that quickly. They also nap around 10:30, 1, and 3:30. These are just average times. I truly don't keep track. They never last more than an hour, and that would be pretty long. Most babies at 6 months take 2 naps. 2 looonger naps. Guess Elliot and Finnley haven't got the memo yet. Mason naps around 11. When all kids nap at the same time, I try to join in. This is rare, however.
In between all that napping, the girls like to hang out in their doorway jumpers and watch Mason play and be worn around the house. Sometimes more floor time takes place, sometimes they practice sitting. But really, they aren't the happiest of babies and need to be held a lot. But, that's okay. I'm becoming very buff.
The day ends at bedtime. 6:00pm. Dad takes Mason upstairs to start his bedtime routine. Mom stays downstairs and rocks/feeds the girls to sleep. Then the girls take turns waking up a bajillion times during the night and we start over again at 6am the next morning!

Elliot and Finnley got their first taste of food. Two days before turning 6 months, but they were just too excited to wait. Day one was cucumbers for dinner and a banana for supper. The sippy cups were pretty intriguing, too.

Elliot has the biggest smile. She is also pretty easy going (compared to her sister), although she has her moments. Usually during her last diaper change of the day, right before bed, she just giggles the whole time. Perhaps she has bottled it up all day and just needs to get it out?

Finnley is really into food right now. If you eat in front of her, she just stares you down, wondering where hers is. She is also the feistier of the two, letting you know what's up.

Both these girls are developing unique personalities and it is great fun to watch them unfold. The older they get, the easier life becomes and the easier it is to see exactly how they fit into our family. Twins might be hard, but it is certainly worth seeing them grow and interact together.