Thursday, October 26, 2017

Be Open To It

Fall has finally arrived here in Washington... the rain came, which made the colors pop... such a neat process, that never ceases to amaze me. Last year, we were handling being a fresh family of 7... having just added 2 new littles to our clan... this year, it was time to enjoy a fall adventure. Things to remember about this outing: Finn called it a "Pumpkin Package" instead of a patch... the mini donuts were TO DIE FOR, the babies were totally unimpressed by everything (except for the swinging at Wright Park) and you don't have to pay a million bucks to have fun. I love teaching our littles that adventures are everywhere... we just have to be open to it.

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Sunday, October 08, 2017

Double the Celebration

I won't lie... having twins, means celebrating doubly... and it's pretty awesome. We opted to wait and celebrate their 1st birthday on the weekend this year, instead of on their actual birthday. On their actual birthday, we decided to enjoy a day filled with play, snuggles/cuddles... savor this time with them a little, because they will only get bigger from this point on. They're our last little babes... I needed to enjoy this time with them, instead of stressing out and baking up a storm. That night, I surprised the family with a group huddle toast. I first thanked them for all the help and support they were this last year... ever diaper/wipe they fetched or threw away, every feeding that they could help with, every time they held and cuddled a baby or played with them or watched over them... I wanted to share my complete gratitude for them, because without them, we couldn't have gotten through this year. I might not have thanked them enough during those moments... so that night was for pouring out my heart to them... my heart go thankfulness for their precious acts of service... I honestly don't know how we would have done it without them..

That weekend though, we let the babies bathe in cake... I baked some pumpkin cookies that we layered with homemade whipped cream in between... and let them dig in. It was so fun to see how different they were... We sang a joyful "Happy Birthday" to them, twice through... once for each of them... and both times, they beamed... knowing that it was their turn to be celebrated.

Josephine was super slow to the feasting. She wasn't too sure about the cake at first. She dipped her finger, a little, but she's usually the one to not get dirty. Daddy showed her the way after a few minutes of her not touching the cake... smooshed her hand in a little bit, and from that point on, she took off with it. She dug right in... destroying her cake.

Mable was the first to feast... she clawed at her cake, mostly with her left hand... and daintily dug in... she attacked only half of her cake... the other half, looked completely untouched. She was completely serious over the task... until the end... when she started clapping, as though she knew she had done a great job and signed "all done"...

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Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Dear Josephine and Mable { 10, 11, and 12 months! }

Dear Josephine and Mable,

1 years old... you are both 1 today! Feels like the biggest accomplishment we've had "to date"... we've kept you alive and well for 1 whole year... the two of you, twins. It's sort of bittersweet, hitting this milestone. You're my last babies... so as much as we LOVE seeing you grow, the reality is, that you're never going to be this tiny ever again.

I've said it before, but we are still in denial that we grew by 2 when you made your appearance a year ago... going from 3 kids to 5 kids is a HUGE jump... and we have been stretched in so many ways this year. You two completely refine us in ways that your brother and sisters, never have. It has been the hardest year for us... but also the most rewarding. Caring for you two, has unveiled a whole slew of our weaknesses... and the one thing that is certain, is that there's no way we would have made it this year without God's strength and a whole lot of grace.

Josephine Lane... Our Jo, you came into this world in just a few quick pushes... ready to tackle the world. Your beauty (cleft lip and all), completely captivated us. Those eyes penetrated us, the moment we made contact, and they continue to melt our hearts in ways we never thought it was possible. You started off as a determined little one... and to this day, we call you the "Boss Baby". You are equal parts toughness and tenderness. You're happiest when fed, and you love to listen to music or be sung to. You FINALLY started crawling a few weeks ago, well after Mable started... but you've caught up completely... it was like you were figuring out all along, how to avoid all the mistakes that you watched Mable make, only to perfect it. You hardly have any bumps and bruises compared to your sister... you definitely are less of a risk taker. The race is on to see who will walk first. We're not ruling you out sista'.

You pretty much eat anything that we put in front of you. You seem to really enjoy blueberries, cheese sticks, and turkey. If there's something you don't like very much (like salami), you do this pathetic little cry, until we clear it off your tray table. You give us this look, like, "How dare you... I told you I don't like it... and you're pushing it on me again."  It's hilarious. Your expressions tell us SO much.. but we don't rely solely on them, because you communicate so much to us. You are the chatty one between the two of you.

You love to lay your head on a shoulder when you're tired, but overall, you're not as cuddly as your sister. You have 4 teeth, and are working on a whole bunch more. You are in the pits when those suckers break through the gums... you are absolutely miserable. Sleep is hit or miss with you. You were doing so well, until those teeth started coming in. Hoping that things will start to get back on track over the next few months as we move you two into your own room.

Your little lip... we couldn't be more pleased with how its healed. You love to be kissed on your lips now... there's no fear there anymore. You suck in your lower lip, and it's so precious. Your cleft lip and the surgery, was something that weighed a little heavy on our hearts this year... so happy it's in our past.

Mable Oaks... our Maybe, you came into this world slow and steady... and now are the exact opposite. You are one fierce, little spider monkey. Your calm and laid-back presence was what completely won us over at first. As long as your needs were met, you were the easiest baby... completely pleasant. Over the months, you figured out that in order to be heard in this house, you needed to make yourself known... and that you've done. You have pretty much done everything "first" when it comes to milestones... and you haven't slowed down one bit. You are a busy body. Even when you fed, your toes were wiggling or your little fingers were grabbing at something. You seem to have no fear, and want to climb up on anything/everything. You're the one that figures things out the hard way... trial and error. It definitely shows how adventurous you are.

You, like your sister, eat pretty much anything that's put in front of you. The one thing you're not too fond of, is eggs. You'll eat the tiniest bit... but they get old after 2 bites. We had to buckle you in recently, because you figured out the whole "standing in your highchair" thing, and thought you were hilarious. It reminds us SO much of your brother Finn. He did the same thing... little stinkers, like to give us heart palpitations.

You've turned into the cuddly one... when you're tired. You also do this sweet little tug at your ears when you're ready to sleep... or upset at something. You cover your ears to soothe/comfort yourself. I'm not sure how this came about, but it did. You love to sleep on your tummy... and usually sleep solidly throughout the night... but wake super early. You dance anytime music is on... you just bounce up and down in the cutest little rhythm with the music. It's perfection.

You both love to be tickled and rough housed. When Daddy tosses you around, it's your favorite. Your giggles are contagious. Jo, you are one to really laugh when we tickle your thighs... Maybe, you laugh so hard when we go for your neck/chest. You guys clap anytime the other is being tickled... in anticipation for your own turn.

Watching you two interact with your brother and sisters is so awesome. You love to play with their toys... baby toys, what are those? You go straight for Finn's dinosaurs or the Duplo blocks. You love to take things out of baskets, and put things back into baskets. You love to eat rocks and smoosh anything between your fingers. You are constantly in toilet paper rolls... pulling it down and off... but you don't stop there. You shred that toilet paper so finely, we are pretty impressed. I think we've gone through at least 4 rolls, and still haven't learned the lesson of closing the door after we're done. You love to pull the recycling out of the closet as well, tossing it all over the floor. When one of you is in something, and Mommy goes to get you out of it, the other always makes a move to get into something. It's just how you tag team us... you're super clever.

We couldn't imagine our days without you both... You keep us so busy, but it's a good kind of busy. We can't wait for what's to come this next year. I'm sure it's going to be wild.

You two, totally complete our family... we love you dearly,

Daddy, Mommy, Charlotte, Marley and Finn.

(of course I have to post some outtakes... taking pictures of both of them at the same time, is IMPOSSIBLE... I don't know how other twin moms do it.) One always antagonizes the other, or ones off crawling wanting to get away from the other...

Take a look at their birth story, their 1 month post, 2 month post, 3 month post, 4 month post, 5 month post, 6 month post, 7 month post,  and 8 & 9 month post.
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