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The Twin Invasion

Chronicling our life with twins. If this is your first visit, start with the oldest archives to get the whole story.

Updated: 2018-03-07T15:15:13.530-05:00


Long Time No Post


So, it's been a long time since we've posted! My apologies! This blog was originally Gene's creation but it has been long lost and forgotten, I think. Poor blog.

I have actually started my own blog and wanted to point you to it, if interested. I'll try to do a better job at regularly posting pictures of the kids and life in general. I know so many of our family and friends live far from us and we don't see you often, so the blog was a nice way to keep everyone updated.

So, you're probably wondering, why the new blog? Ever since the twins were born I have wanted to do baby books for them. Unfortunately, I'm not really the "craft" type person. And, the idea of buying all of the paper, embellishments, glue and cutting equipment seemed daunting, and expensive. Plus, I just didn't see myself wanting to pull everything out each time to work on a page and then cleaning it all up after I'm done. I would visit scrapbooking stores trying to motivate myself to take the plunge, but it never happened.

So, last year I decide to look into what's called digital scrapbooking. It's definitely more my speed. Everything is done on the computer so there is no mess to clean up and if you make a mistake or want to change something on your layout, there's an undo key! No undo keys when you're working on paper scrapbooking! So, I found software to use and started playing! I have quickly become addicted.

There is a whole world of digital scrapbooking that exists on the net. Tons of digital scrapbooking stores and designers, creative teams, galleries, etc. So, I started exploring, posting my layouts on galleries and participating in forums. And now, I am working for three different designers on their creative team (CT). Basically, a CT is a group of individuals who work for a designer creating layouts with their products. You have access to all of their designs for free and in return, create layouts with their products and post them to online galleries - hence - avertising for the designer.

So, blogs showing off your galleries and layouts are the norm and encouraged and with being on three CTs, I thought I should start one of my own. It won't be set up as this one is, meaning you won't get an email every time there is a post. But, feel free to visit because I'll be updating it regularly! You can find it here: Oh My Stars

2 Year Pictures


We took Olivia and Eugene to have their 2 year pictures done on Saturday. Luckily for them (and us), we won't be going back for more photos until, at the earliest, December for Christmas portraits. Needless to say, trying to get two two year old toddlers to pose, smile and look at the camera at the same time is next to impossible. And, as you can see from the photos below, it was impossible for this particular shoot! Not only did none of the above happen, we also had bouts of crying and temper tantrums throughout, as well. Probably the most comical of the entire event was to see me, Gene and the photographer making complete fools of ourselves, pulling out all the stops just to get the smiles to appear. I think Gene and I were as exhausted as the twins after it was all said and done. However, despite the work, I think we got some pretty good shots in the end. And here are a few shots of the temper tantrums in progress... :) [...]

Happy Birthday!


Happy 2nd Birthday Eugene and Olivia!! I still can't believe it's been two years! (image) (image) I'll be back tomorrow with more pictures!

What a difference a year makes!


We had our first big snow of the winter on February 13th and Eugene and Olivia loved every minute of it! Last winter, we really only had one big snowfall as well and unfortunately, the twins didn't feel quite the same about the snow. They were only 8 months old at the time and I bundled them up in their huge snowsuits and plopped them in the snow.

They hated it (as seen in the pictures below) ...

(image) (image) This winter, was a different story, however...

(image) (image) (image) (image) (image)
Oh what a difference a year makes!




Christmas 2006


Christmas this year was very special for us as it was the first Christmas celebrated in our new home. It was also the first Christmas that Eugene and Olivia were old enough to enjoy opening and receiving presents. Every year we have my entire family and Gene's family over to our house for Christmas Eve. This year was no different. The thing that has become quite different, however, is that we went from a large family gathering with no little ones to having four little ones present within the span of a year. My two closest cousins each had a child of their own within six months of the twins being born. Lindsay is six months older than the twins and Mason is six months younger. Here are some shots of all of the munchkins opening their gifts... Lindsay (in the green) and Mason (in the stripes)... Here are some pics of Eugene and Olivia opening their gifts from Santa on Christmas morning. Eugene is opening his most favorite gift of all... Dusty the Vacuum (who he affectionately calls "The Mower"). He's been obsessed with Mommy's "Mower" so we thought he should have one of his own. Olivia got twin (boy/girl, of course) babies and a stroller to push them in from Santa. I don't think she really cares about the babies but loves to push the stroller around the house right along side her brother with his "mower". And what toddler would be complete without their very own Doctor kit? Now that Christmas is over, the twins have spent the week keeping very busy with their new toys. And Mommy has been kept busy trying to reorganize the playroom to make room for all of the new toys! Olivia modeling some of the new accessories that she got from Oma and Grandpa. This girl LOVES to play dress up! And of course looking your best (right down to the Elmo slippers) is a necessity for cooking dinner in your new kitchen from Grandma and Grandpa! And Eugene is still "mowing"... All of this playing sure can make you tired. Breaks are necessary from time to time! And what day would be complete without a little bathtub art before bed?? This is one of the shots that will have to be saved to embarrass them when they're older! [...]

Eugene and Olivia: 20 months


It's been quite a while since we've provided an update on the twins. Many of our friends and family have been asking for a posting so I thought I should take advantage of this Christmas break and get to work.

Eugene and Olivia turned 20 months old on December 11th. It's hard to believe that TWO is right around the corner. They've transformed from babies to toddlers virtually overnight. It's hard to believe how fast our little ones are growing up. I now see a little boy and little girl when I look at them.

Their relationship with each other seems to have transformed overnight as well. They went from basically ignoring each other for the first year of their lives to becoming playmates. It must be really cool to be a twin and have a built in buddy. They chase each other around the house and laugh all day long. They truly love each other.

Don't get me wrong, fights (especially over toys) happen several times a day. But, they're short lived and the laughing and playing resumes just as quickly as it stopped.

They are learning and developing at such a rapid rate right now, too. I'm amazed everyday at what they know and have learned. Olivia surprised me this week by counting to 15. I never even knew she could count to three, let alone fifteen! They're doing really well with their language development as well. At last count (which was when they were 18 months), Eugene had 60 words and Olivia had 30 words. That was two months ago and I've now completely lost count. They are both also saying small sentences of three to four words. Now that the communication barrier is coming down and they can tell us what they want, it makes life so much easier for everyone.

Here are a few pictures that we had taken two weeks ago:

(image) (image) (image) (image) (image)

Our New Home


If you've been wondering where we've been lately, we can sum it up in one word: MOVING. We moved into our brand new house last month! The idea of moving came up just about as quickly as the move itself.

Our old house, which was Gene's Grandmother's house, had been our first home. We love that house and were very sad to leave. It's a great house for a couple or single occupant but with only two bedrooms upstairs, it was not ideal for our expanded family. Plus, it's on a very busy street and the traffic made me nervous with the twins becoming more and more active and adventurous every day. So, we started house hunting in September, signed a contract on the house in October and moved in over Veteran's Day weekend in November.

The house we bought was just finished the week we moved in. It's in phase one of a new development about a mile from our old house. The development is slated to have about 100 homes by the time it is finished. We absolutely love the neighborhood and the house and are very much looking forward to Eugene and Olivia growing up here.

Our good friends, Mike and Brooke, moved in across the street the same weekend we moved. It's so great to now call them neighbors. The rest of the neighbors we've met so far have been very welcoming and we're looking forward to getting to know everyone a bit better once the weather is nicer and everyone is spending more time outside.

Here's the house when we saw it for the first time in September:

(image) Here's the house on our last visit before signing the papers. The grass was coming in well at this point.


And finally, here's the house about three weeks ago after moving in and putting up some Christmas lights.


There's nothing like balancing unpacking an entire house while trying to decorate and prepare for Christmas. Needless to say, the Heyman clan is exhausted and thankful that we're finally settled in our new home!

Summer Update Part I - Memorial Day Weekend


This is the first of a series of posts to catch you all up on our busy summer. Memorial Day weekend was a big weekend for us this year. It was our first year attending the annual East Coast Twinstuff Picnic and Sesame Place Day. Twinstuff is a message board for twin parents. I found the site about two months prior to delivering the twins and it was a huge help to me after they were born. During those first few overwhelming months as a new mom of twins, the advice and information that I found on that site (along w/ my best friend, Heather, who is also a twin mom), was priceless. I'm still a regular visitor to the site and am still able to find helpful advice as my twins get older and move onto new stages with new challenges. Only now, I'm able to provide advice as well! Twinstuff members from the east coast get together every year for a picnic and a day at Sesame Place It's a chance for all of the Moms (and Dads) who post regularly to the site to get together 'in person'. And, it's so much fun to see so many sets of twins together in one place. The picnic was held at a park in a suburb of Philly and there were probably 40 adults and close to 20 sets of twins in attendance. Gene and I had decided to bring along the super play yard as a way to contain Eugene and Olivia once we got to the party. Turned out that most everyone else who had very young twins had the same idea. The great thing about these play yards is that they all link together. So, we ended up with one huge play pen for all of the little ones! After the party, we drove to our friend's (Heather and Guy) house for dinner and to spend the night. They were going to be joining us the next day at Sesame Place and since the picnic ended up being so close to their home, it worked out perfectly! They have twin girls (as mentioned above) and while we've always been great friends, being parents to twins has brought us all even closer. It's a great tie that we have and even though our get togethers are now a lot more chaotic, I wouldn't trade it for the world! Here's a shot of both sets of twins going for a wagon ride in Heather and Guy's backyard. If you look closely, you can see that Carly and Sydney are enjoying it a lot more than Olivia and Eugene. We spent Sunday at Sesame Place. This was Eugene and Olivia's first trip to an amusement park. Even though they were too young for most of the rides, they still loved it. What one year old wouldn't love a park filled with Elmo and all of his friends! Here's Olivia and Eugene ready to head into the park. Don't they look excited? At least they're dressed the part in their Elmo outfits! As I mentioned above, most of the rides and activities were for kids a bit older than 13 months. But, Big Birds Birdhouse was a hit! They spent about an hour climbing around on the blocks and the best part for Mom and Dad was that it was in the shade! We had a great time and are planning to go back next year. The twins will be a year older and will hopefully be able to do a bit more at the park. Regardless of the activity level, Olivia didn't make it out of the park before falling asleep in her stroller. I guess we pushed naptime back a bit too far! Further evidence that nap time was pushed a bit too far! The kids spent Memorial Day relaxing in their new blow-up pool (compliments of Aunt Julie)! What a perfect way to end a long, holiday weekend! [...]

Poor Farley


Well, it's been way too long since our last post. Gene and I have been a bit lazy in the blogging department. We are WAY behind on our updates of the kids and have been enjoying a busy summer. I promise to be back soon with updates. I've got quite a few lined up. However, this one was so darn cute - it couldn't wait!

To say Olivia and Eugene love our dog, Farley, would be an understatement. I think Eugene's first smile and laugh as a baby was at Farley and not Mom or Dad! They think he is quite funny and get a kick out of him doing something as simple as scratching his ear. However, they also get a kick out of teasing him with food. Olivia learned this fun little past time from her brother and we caught her in action last night. Poor Farley.


1st Year Montage


Over the first year that Olivia and Eugene have been here with us, we have taken hundreds of pictures. I have the very best intentions of doing scrapbooks for each but haven't started the first page or even bought the necessary supplies! So, I thought I should do something useful with at least a fraction of our pictures and create a montage of their first year.

Be sure to turn on your speakers and have about five minutes to spare!

Create your own video at One True Media

The Birthday Party


We had Olivia and Eugene's birthday party on April 8th at our house. It went really well other than the weather wasn't as nice as we had hoped. We had about 28 adults and 16 kids so it was a fairly packed house. The twins did great and didn't seem overwhelmed at all by the number of people there. It was a busy day and of course I didn't feel like I had much of an opportunity to visit with everyone - but isn't that what always happens when you're the host? They both seemed to love their birthday cake and I got some good shots of them both with icing all over their faces (see below). Olivia actually ended up getting it in her ears! On a side note and I guess good timing on this one, I ended up getting the stomach flu as the last of our guests were leaving. Unfortunately for some of our guests (ten of our guests to be exact), they would be getting the same virus over the next few days. I'm sure they didn't expect to be getting the stomach flu as their party favor! :) Now on to the pictures... The Spread The GiftsThe Elmo Cake Olivia playing with her friend, Reagan (they were born 8 days apart!)My best friend, Heather, with her twin girls, Carly and Sydney More of our friends and familyGene enjoying the pizzaOlivia and Eugene's Grandpa and Great Grandma (Gene's Dad and Grandmother)And last but not least... the Birthday Girl And the Birthday Boy I thought I'd end with a video clip of just how much Eugene loved his first Birthday cake! (just click the play button) [...]

Our First Year


Well, since my husband has been slacking a bit with the posts, I thought I would take over for a while. Unfortunately for me, however, I have some large shoes to fill. I definitely don't have the story telling ability that he does!

As you all know, Olivia and Eugene turned one year old about two weeks ago and I thought that this milestone deserved a little more attention on the blog (along with a few pictures since many of you have not seen them in a long time)! I'm still having a hard time believing that they are actually a year old. Time certainly flies by when you're having fun... or are too busy to notice that the days turn into months.

And now to sum up our first year with the twins... where to begin? I guess I can start off by saying that, without a doubt, this has been most amazing year of my life! I have never been pushed to, at least what felt like, my physical and mental limits (especially in those early months) but I've also never felt such love.

I never could've known, before Olivia and Eugene arrived, just how much I would love these two incredible, little individuals. As much as people try to tell you what it's like when you become a parent, you never truly understand it until you become one yourself.

Don't get me wrong, though, this first year hasn't been all roses and happy days. There have been plenty of tears and frustration. Tempers have been lost on occasion (not by me, of course) and wits have reached their ends.

I've also learned more about myself and my abilities in this year than I ever could've imagined. I've learned that:
  • 30 minutes of solid sleep can refill your "tanks" enough to make it thru at least several hours of diaper changes and feedings.
  • 4-5 hours of sleep actually feels like 8 hours used to feel prior to the twins arrival.
  • I can accomplish more in their 2 hour nap than I used to accomplish in an entire day.
  • Having two babies and two parents shows you the true meaning of team work.
  • A bouncy seat will get you thru just about anything - eating dinner, folding laundry, etc.
  • I could bounce a bouncy seat while doing just about anything - blow drying my hair, wrapping presents - you name it!
  • Having two babies actually feels like the work of three because even though your workload is doubled - you're tapping into the same supply of patience and energy. Just because you've run out of both on the first kid doesn't mean you get to refill for the second one (this last lesson actually comes from a fellow twin Daddy).

But on a serious note, the biggest thing I've learned is what a true blessing my twins are to me and to each other. I love that they have each other and I love watching them bond more and more everyday. I'm so proud to be their Mommy and can not imagine life without them!

Happy Birthday!


Today is Eugene and Olivia's first birthday. Happy birthday kids!

On Saturday we had a birthday party for them. After all of the pizza and cake and presents, we had a champagne toast. Tracy thanked our family and friends for all of their support.

"I can't believe we survived their first year," she said.

"Be careful what you say," I told her. "Their birthday is on Tuesday. Everything could fall apart by then."

We really couldn't have done it without the support of all of our friends and family. Thanks everyone!



(image) And we can't leave Eugene out. Here he is coming straight out of a nap. If only I woke up looking that good.



(image) I don't even know what to say about this picture-aside from Olivia looking cute. I'll leave it up to you to comment. By the way, it looks like someone whacked Elmo the way he's laying back there.

A Year of Blogging


I noticed recently that the Twin Invasion archives begin and end with the month of February. It's been a year since I began blogging about our life as twin parents, or, as it started, twin parents-to-be.

Every day I am amazed at where we are and where we've been, with only a tiny portion of it making its way here on this blog.

What began as a means of updating family and friends, over the past year has yielded relationships with other twin parents who share experiences, many the same, some completely different.

I've enjoyed being able to poke fun at my wife. Thanks, dear, for your good humor. And I've enjoyed sharing it with you all. Thank you for being out there. It wouldn't be much fun if I knew nobody was reading it:)

At least I assume you're reading this. Hello?...Is anyone out there?



Tracy has been harassing me to get some new pictures out on the blog.

I said to her, "You're a contributor. Why don't you do it?"

So, anyway. Here's some recent pics of the kids we thought you'd enjoy.



Eugene and Olivia on their first Christmas morning.




All of the photos are relatively recent. The one above is from their 9 month birthday on Jan 11, 2005.

I don't know how it happens, but did you notice Olivia always ends up on the left?


Sleepwalking Weirdo: Part II


The following account is real. These are actual events, retold to the best of my ability, and with my wife's help.

I am not making this up.


Tracy and Gene's bedroom - 12:20 a.m. All is quiet. Moonlight streams through the windows. Olivia and Little Eugene are sleeping in their bedroom across the hall. Tracy sits up in bed and nudges Gene.

[Tracy] "Eugene, wake up."
[Gene] "hmm..." (sleepy)
[Tracy] "Eugene, where are the babies?"
[Gene] "hmm?...I don't know."
[Tracy] "Are the babies in bed with us?"

Gene begins to wake up, realizing what's happening.

[Gene] "Tracy, the babies are in their room. Go back to sleep."
[Tracy] "You mean the babies aren't in bed with us?"
[Gene] "No, they are not." (annoyed)
[Tracy] "Well, if they aren't in bed with us, then why did you tell me you didn't know when I first asked you? Hmm?" (accusingly)

Gene sits up in bed and looks at Tracy.

[Gene] "Maybe because I was asleep? (mildly annoyed) Tracy, you're having a dream. Go back to sleep." (somewhat understanding)

Tracy begins poking her hands under Gene's body.

[Gene] "Stop that! (loud whisper) Do you think I'm hiding the babies from you? You are having a dream. Go back to sleep." (very annoyed)

Tracy rolls over without another word. Gene lays back down to sleep.

Ten minutes pass. Gene wakes up to see Tracy looking under his side of the bed.

[Gene] "Tracy, what are you doing?" (matter-of-fact)
[Tracy] "Nothing." (nonchalant)

Tracy walks to her dresser and puts a shirt on, pretending that's the reason she got up. Gene watches as Tracy stands, hands on her dresser, slowly stepping out of her dream and back to reality. An understanding smile from Gene and Tracy, embarrassed, slips back in bed.

Sleepwalking Weirdo


The other day I read this blog post about co-sleeping. Co-sleeping, for those of you who don't know, is when parents let their children sleep in bed with them. I think the reason is mainly to get the kids to sleep through the night. I don't know, because we don't do it. The kids have slept pretty well on their own. Besides, it's kind of icky. But, that's not the point.

The point is it reminded me of a dream I had the night before. Actually, I was sleepwalking. But I dreamt about co-sleeping. It was kind of like a co-sleepwalk.

In the middle of the night I got out of bed to use the bathroom. When I came back I left the bedroom door open. Tracy asked me to close the door.

"In a minute, honey. We have to put Little Eugene back in his crib," I told her.

"What are you talking about?" she asked me. "He is in his crib."

"No, come on. Hand him over. He's not sleeping in our bed anymore," was my reply.

"Eugene, our son has never slept in our bed. You are having a dream. Go back to bed." she told me.

"What?" I said with a pause, finally coming to. I slumped back into bed.

The next day I e-mailed Tracy to apologize for waking her up the night before. This was her reply:

Hi Eugene. Actually, you woke me up three times last night thinking there were babies in the bed. The first two times it was Olivia and then the last time (when you got up to go to the bathroom), you thought Eugene was in bed with us. I couldn't believe it - especially since you were up and walking around! :) I think we have switched roles!!

Love you,

This really was a role reversal. You see, Tracy used to do this on a regular basis. For months after the babies were born, she'd sit up in the middle of the night and start shoving me out of bed. Then she'd frantically feel around on the covers trying to find the baby, who wasn't there. Being that she was a new mother, I tried to understand. But between you and me, I always thought it was a little weird.

Now I'm the weirdo.

Add that to my list of groups I previously thought only others belonged to:
  • Idiot Drivers
  • Unfit Parents

  • and today...
  • Sleepwalking Weirdos

The Difference Between Parents and Grandparents


The other night Tracy's parents came over to see the grandkids. Tracy and I had been trying to feed the kids their solid food dinner, and it wasn't going well.

"Eugene," Tracy sternly told our son, "I can't get the spoon in there when you close your mouth."

"See?" she said to me with exasperation, pointing at Little Eugene with the spoon. "He's closing his mouth before I get the spoon all the way in. Half the food goes in his mouth, half the food gets all over his face!"

"I know," I told her. "He's been doing that for the past couple of days. It's driving me crazy, too."

"Here, look at Olivia," I said to Tracy, as food dripped down her face and on her bib. "I can get the spoon in there fine, but the food gets pushed out again because Olivia keeps sticking her tongue out!" I exhaled deeply in frustration.

Just then Ed and Aleene arrived. I asked them if they would you like to feed the kids some dinner. They eagerly said yes, each taking a seat in front of one of the kids. We were ready for a break, and quickly got out of the way.

"Have fun!" I said sarcastically, content to watch someone else get frustrated for a while. But, that's exactly what they did. They smiled and made goo-goo faces, which these previously uncooperative children reciprocated. The feeding continued.

"Oh, look Ed! Olivia keeps sticking her tongue out and it's getting food all over her face," my mother-in-law said with a laugh.

"Look, look," she said laughing. "She's doing it again!"

"You're just as bad as your brother," my father-in-law playfully told his granddaughter. "He keeps closing his mouth before I can get the spoon in!"

Aleene looked over and laughed. "He's got food all over the place!" she said.

This went on and on. Tracy and I stared in bewilderment. We eventually looked at each other.

"Isn't this the same behavior that we were pulling our hair out over just ten minutes ago?" I asked my wife.

"I think it is," Tracy told me.

"So, what's the difference?" I asked her.

"I guess it's the difference between parents and grandparents," she said.

Unnecessary Parental Competitiveness


(image) I know all parents are proud of their children. And I don't mean to brag. But, I must say, my son is really advanced.

Eugene has just gotten his seventh tooth. That's right. He has seven teeth! The boy is barely 8 months old, and he's out-pacing kids twice his age.

(image) Now, I understand some children are dentally challenged. Parents, don't worry if your 1 year old is still working on his first top tooth. Every child develops at their own pace. They will eventually end up with the same number of teeth.

My kid just happens to be kicking your kid's butt!




To all parents introducing solid foods to your children: WARNING! Beech-Nut Stage 2 Prunes may have unanticipated effects on your children and your children's clothing, as well as anything they happen to be sitting upon.

Beech-Nut Stage 2 Prunes are not just a step above Plums. The laxative effect of Beech-Nut Stage 2 Prunes is markedly enhanced.

For parents who decide to feed their children Beech-Nut Stage 2 Prunes, proper site preparation is recommended. Begin with plastic sheeting covering surfaces 3 to 4 feet in all directions. Two baby lengths is a good rule of thumb.

For yourself, wear old clothing, perhaps something you've used for painting. For the children who don't really have "old" clothes, dress them in something they've nearly out grown. Be prepared to throw away all clothing.

Have a bucket of warm, soapy water on hand. Keep a ready supply of clean, fresh rags. As a final note, Febreze Fabric Refresher will help minimize any aromas lingering in affected areas.

Twin Confusion


I am forever amazed at how little people know about babies - twins in particular. Sure, not everyone has twins. And I admit I didn't know much about babies before I had them. But how is it that some among us lack the most basic baby knowledge?

(image) Boys have boy haircuts and wear clothes with trucks on them. Their clothes will often be blue, but they will assuredly not be pink. Girls wear pink and their clothes have flowers on them. A girl could be mistaken for a boy when the girl hasn't grown more hair than the boy sitting next to her. However, any pink is a clear indication of a girl.

When you're out with babies, people, especially older women, feel free to stop you to talk to you. I suppose this happens to anyone with a newborn, but the excitement doubles when they see it's twins.

"Oh my! Two babies!" someone will exclaim. "Are they twins?" the person asks.

"Yes, yes they are," I tell them.

"Oh, how adorable," they say smiling at the children. "Two boys?" they ask.

"No, one boy, one girl," I answer.

"How sweet," they'll say. "My niece had twins. Are yours identical?"

Now, I thought it was common knowledge that identical twins are the identical sex. I mean, I knew this way before I had twins. But, you would not believe how often I am asked this question.

"No, ma'am. They're not identical," I'll say. "Actually they have different fathers."

[blank stare]

[pause for effect]

"Just kidding," I say.