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Adventures in Kicking People

Updated: 2018-03-05T15:41:38.810-05:00


Thanksgiving 2015


Thanksgiving was warm this year, and gorgeous.  We had friends over dinner, and spent a good bit of time playing outside with the kids.  We took our annual family photo, and looking back over the last three years is kind of mind boggling.

The boys, Monkey especially, are still into their trikes.  Our neighbors stopped by, and N (the birthday girl from the last post) brought her new scooter and they all went up and down the driveway together.

 Bear is still having trouble riding things. N showed them how to sit on the scooter footpad and ride, which looked ridiculous and uncomfortable, but they all seemed to be having fun.  B eventually went back to just walking his scooter along like it was a pet.

The dirt pile (our leftover leaf mold) continues to be a hit. These mega blok toys are getting a lot of use out there.

Trikes, a Party, and a Painting


 It's been a busy few days.  On Wednesday, I met up with fellow moms of multiples for our monthly meeting, where I also picked up two old tricycles from a friend.  I forgot about them, which was fine because it rained all day Thursday, but the boys found them in the car when we were headed for school on Friday. They were so excited, and they spent the trip to school deciding who would own which color.  Monkey took the yellow, and Bear took the red.Learning to Ride They spent the afternoon riding them, only really breaking for their nap. Monkey took to it right away, but Bear doesn't really understand the purpose of the pedals despite my various explanations and demonstrations.Today, Saturday, they were invited to our 7 year old neighbor's birthday party.  It was at one of those kid gyms, and my guys were definitely the youngest ones there. Following along with the instructors was not really happening, but they had so much fun.This ball pit was basically their favorite thing.Briefly following along with the group.Living up to his name.I was so proud of them for getting along with all the other kids even though they were mostly 7 year old girls.  They even sat with them for snacks and cake, and used utensils and were mostly neat.  "I'm going to sleep here." Okay kid. This evening, I met up with those multiple moms again at Painting with a Twist, a place that lets you eat snacks and drink booze while following along with a teacher who walks you through a simple painting.Taking a break so the background can drive.The sample painting. It was weird for me to paint around a lot of other people like that, especially with a teacher telling me how I had to do it.  After a while I just stopped listening to her because, well, sometimes you just have to follow your artistic impulses. Also, she told me us to use the white to put in bright snow in lines, and I hated it. I spent a long time trying to fix it, and I'm still annoyed with that. But I think the snowman looks awesome, and it was a fun night out.This is a chain, which might be individually owned?, so you can probably find this, or something similar, in your area.  They have a smaller room for private parties, which is what we did, and you get to pick the painting your group will do.  You bring your own food and drinks and it's nice. They also have a large room, and anyone can sign up for those sessions. On top of all of this, DS was gone all of Thursday and Friday, so I was alone with the kids. Thankfully, there is nothing on the calendar tomorrow.  Cold weather is also coming in the forecast. It's time to start thinking about turkey and snow and the magical hibernation month that is Christmas.[...]



It's been a year since I posted last. Oh well, I'm not even going to stress about everything I missed. Short version, the kids are nearly 3, started nursery school, and that 9 hours a week they're not home has made me somewhat sane again. Yay? DS is off at a conference this week. It's been a while since his last one, so I'm a little out of practice. I think this might be the first once since they started school, so tomorrow should be interesting. He's getting out of autumn yard work.  I'd let it wait until he's back, but our town picks up leaves for us to turn them into mulch that we buy back in the spring for a great price, and unless they reschedule, this is the last week they're coming.  Of course, they were supposed to come once last week too, and they didn't. So maybe there will still be two, but I can't risk it. We have a LOT of trees, and I need as many of them out of here as possible before I'm stuck bagging what's left.Since I was up at 6am on a Sunday (which is ludicrous), the three of us went outside to do full yard rake #2.  As annoying as it is to do it more than once, that seems to make it manageable. Our first year I think I tried to do it all at once in the short hours of the kids' nap and after DS got home from work. Which meant I did a lot of raking in the dark.  It was never ending and exhausting.  It still takes 3-5 hours to do a full yard sweep like this, but that's a lot better than it used to be. I can still have the entire afternoon free and be actually done (until the trees that still have leaves drop them again) instead of it all looming over me every night as I can't get finished.Anyway, like I was saying, we did some raking.  The kids "helped," by which I mean they swung their rakes around and nearly decapitated each other and scattered my piles. And then they ran through them and jumped in them.  They had a ton of fun, and it was a rather amusing distraction for me so I didn't mind too much.  Enjoy some photos of them in leaves, including a gif that google made for me.[...]

Getting Emotional


Life here is as crazy as ever.  The boys are keeping us hopping and sometimes it feels like I never get a chance to just sit and think.  They are hilarious and infuriating and wonderful and awful.  Usual toddler stuff.

Tonight DS and I are taking them trick or treating for the first time.  Last year I pushed them through the neighborhood Halloween parade in their costumes, but that was it.  This year we all have costumes (mine is something I'm throwing together from the closet; it seems I follow that trend of putting everyone in the family before myself and never got around to thinking about my costume), and we're going to take them just around the little street we typically circle on our no stroller walks.  We know all of our neighbors thanks to a yearly block party, and they all have kids, though most are older, so at least on that front I know it will be a smooth experience.  They do enjoy walking up to people's porches, but they don't have any idea about the concept of trick or treating, so we'll see how it goes.  I don't even think Bear will let me put his costume on him; it involves a hood.

I'm surprisingly emotional thinking about it this morning.  Parenthood never seems to stop throwing me for a loop.



This weekend, for my birthday, I went to NYC alone.  No kids, and no husband because he was watching the kids.  There were a lot of wonderful things about the trip that I'll try to remember to post later (though, let's be honest, my track record is poor at best), but one thing in particular happened that was terrifying.

I was on the subway heading back to Penn Station to catch the train home.  A young man got on the train, dressed all in back, wearing a backpack, his face covered in a white mask.  He walked the length of the car and settled in front of the door that was directly across from where I was sitting.  He fidgeted and hopped around, like he was psyching himself up for something.  He kept bending over and adjusting his mask, hiding his face, and generally looking uncomfortable and antsy.  Then he would stand up, mask in place, and blatantly stare at people on the car.  A few times he shifted so he was looking out the door between trains.

Now, this is NYC, so the chance that he was just a nut job, or weirdo, or even street performer, were all real possibilities.  Also, it's NYC, so the chance that he was a terrorist was also felt like a real possibility.  It was 9/11 weekend.  I was absolutely terrified at the possibility that this man was psyching him up to do something terrible.  I assumed there was a bomb in the backpack.

No one the train was reacting much.  Most people didn't even acknowledge him.  A few looked at him, curious.  Only one other person seemed even slightly concerned.  I could feel panic rising in me, but there was nowhere to go, and no proof that this person meant anyone harm.  I fought to keep my breath steady, to appear unconcerned.  I refused to look at him except when he bent over to adjust his mask, because I was positioned in a way that he wasn't hiding his face from me when he did so and I wanted to be prepared just in case something needed reporting.  I quickly decided that if he were a nutjob, I did not want to draw attention to myself by staring.  If he were a street performer, I did not want to encourage him to repeat performances terrifying people by engaging.  Not looking at him also help keep me from having a panic attack.

At the next train stop, he went to the open door, crowed loudly as if in triumph, and exited the train.  The people getting on sort of laughed, in that way that people do when they're trying recover from something out of place and feel reconnected with the herd.  I have never been so relieved in my life.

I still don't what his purpose was on the train, or how common an occurrence something like that is in the city.  I've lived in a metropolis long enough to have experienced many random and odd things on the subway, but this was the first time one has made me scared for my life.  It is not something I hope to repeat.  It's also not something that will keep me from going back to NYC and enjoying myself, because everything we do has an inherent risk, and the chance of this happening again seems small.  I am thankful that I have some grasp of my own continuous risk assessment of the world, because I can easily see how this one incident would completely shut down a person.

Garden 2014 - Post 01


I've had a container garden of some form or another for most of my adult life.  Gardening is something that feels like an extension of myself.  On occasion it feels like a chore, but for the most part it is something I constantly itch to do.  One of the bonuses of owning a house with a yard is the prospect of having a legit garden where I can grow my own vegetables.  Not just a tomato here or there and a few herbs, but a serious crop that could help feed us throughout the summer.In pursuit of that goal, I spent quite a lot of time last week researching raised beds, where to find good dirt that will deliver, and sorting out which vegetables to grow and how to arrange them.  I had a very elaborate plan made within two days, thanks in large part to the site Smart Gardener, which is amazing.  Then I compared the projected cost of materials to what was available in the bank and became disheartened.  I thought I would have to wait a whole year again, and I had been so excited about all the plants that were going to fit into the little space I had planned.DS was in full support of this garden, and so he helped me come up with a solution for this year that was easier on the wallet.  Last summer I had attempted to put a couple of green bean plants in the yard, and they were quickly eaten by bunnies.  So I knew whatever I did would need to be protected.  Our solution this year is some very cheap chicken fencing.  It was just big enough with two rolls, with enough left over to have a removable bit on bamboo poles that acts as a "gate".  I think I'll still need to use some tent stakes or something to pin down the bottom, because a determined critter could probably weasel its way underneath, but it seems pretty sturdy otherwise.The start of one of the new garden bedsWe also picked up a 2-sided garden tool for hoeing and cultivating.  I've spent my limited free time this week painstakingly removing the grass from what will be my beds.  For now I'm just scattering this around the areas of the yard that dip and flood during heavy rains.  I should probably get some grass seed at some point.  This is some serious labor right here.  As of today, I have one 12x4' bed done, and one more to go.  I've laid them out exactly where I had planned to build the raised beds, so hopefully next summer those will be easy to install.  After the grass is gone, I'll work in some compost and good gardening soil just to beef up the yard nutrients a bit, and then hope for the best.  I haven't seen any evidence of moles or anything that would come up from below to eat the plants, but I guess we'll find out.  For now, I have seeds sprouting in little containers, just waiting for their new home.  I'm planning to grow a lot of plants that are new to me.  We'll see how it works out.Today was a bit chillier than the last few days, but here are some of the things we've been up to with the boys.Practicing some stair skills.First day it was warm enough for the water table.Curled up on the couch playing with the LeapPad.The boys' new bird feeder.  Monkey has already learned how to sign "bird".  It's very exciting.[...]

Out of the House!


We've been struggling with Monkey wanting to climb every single thing in the house.  Some things I don't mind.  The couch? Go for it buddy.  Climbing to the top of the couch and then using it as a boost to climb on top of the window sill? PLEASE DON'T DO THAT!  Ugh.  Their antics are getting crazier and crazier, and I worry it won't be long before we're dealing with cracked skulls.  Bear doesn't seem to realize how rough and heavy he is, and prefers to show his love to Monkey by standing on sensitive areas like his face and stomach. Brotherly love.But it's not all bad.  They can be so incredibly cute or sweet, sometimes both.  Bear is my little scavenger, and he's constantly looking around for food scraps.  He'll eat anything he finds on the floor (which is usually something he threw there himself during lunch).  Tonight I found a couple of cookies that had been tossed off the high chair, and I placed them on the coffee table.  He noticed 30 minutes later, and his little dance of joy was spectacular to behold.A dangerous game of hide and seekWe spent last weekend in SC for a wedding.  It was our second time flying with the boys, and they were great.  DS's mom met us there and watched the kids.  I'm pretty sure this was the first time we've had a whole evening away from them together.  It was so lovely, almost 8 hours!  Not to mention all of his "snowboarding" friends were there.  Such a nice reunion.Honorary cousins of the boys!Bride & GroomOn Sunday, his sister and her kids came up too, and the whole family went to the zoo there.  It was hot, and very crowded.  I'd been there before, but I honestly didn't remember a single thing about it.  We rented one of the zoo double strollers since we hadn't flown with ours.  There wasn't anywhere to put our diaper bag, and attaching it to the bar immediately made the whole thing tip, even with the kids in it.  So that was a pain, and there was only one "belt" for the both of them.  It was challenging.  Even still, hanging out with the four of the kids together was really fun.Checking out an ostrich from the stroller.Not long before that, Bri and I took them to our zoo.  It was our first time visiting with the new KidZooU open, which was actually really cool.  There was a farm section just for littles like mine that can be gated off so they don't get lost.  It has large wooden cutouts of animals with little buttons the kids can push so the animals make their sound.  Monkey thought it was the coolest.  They also got to pet some goats and sheep.  Some of the doors at the zoo are spectacularly lovely.Smaller than an ant!Petting some goatsDragonfly wing doorsNow that the weather is (sometimes) nice, we've been playing on the deck more.  Lots of bubbles and running around.  They don't exactly listen when I ask them to come back yet, so the deck is an easy place to contain them for now while letting them get some fresh air.This guy was "helping" clean the deck. Spoiler: He's the one that put that dirt there.BubblesWe also had some friends visit.  They wanted to visit this local sculpture park that was built by one guy over years and is a sort of architectural mosaic.  I had never been before, only walked past, so it was neat to run around inside it a bit.  We were holding the boys most of the time, but there was a section that was fairly open and empty of crowds, so we let them run a little bit.  Bear was completely fascinated with the floor tiling.  He looked at every step he took and kept bending over to touch the different textures.   The inside was also used as an art gallery that caters to mosaic artists, and there were some really lovely pieces that used maps and weather patterns and galaxies to great effect.Art by Yulia Hana[...]

On the Move


Both of the boys are walking!  It's really a sight to behold.  Monkey has been for a while now, but Bear finally took the plunged while we were visiting DS's family in West Virginia two weeks ago.  His learning curve since has been fast, and he learned to climb almost immediately.  Just today he was walking along on top of the coffee table, which makes me nervous because it's uneven (it's really no higher than the couch, so the falling part isn't my biggest concern).  I was signing "sit" to him and asking him to just sit if he's going to be up there.  The little scamp just smiled and signed it back to me and went on about his business.Monkey kissing? the couch.  I don't even know man.We had a lot of fun in West Virginia.  Traveling seems like a possible thing now (within reason), especially since we picked up some portable DVD players for the car.  We survived a trip to Boston and this one with very little trouble. DS's grandmother remarried shortly after our own wedding, and he brought his own grandkids into the mix.  They come say hi whenever we're down there, and this was the first time we've visited where the boys could play with them.  There was a lot of chasing happening, which was entertaining.Monkey getting chased, but also, on the phone.Pap's youngest granddaughter has really taken to Bear (she spent a good portion of our last visit just holding him).  She worked with him for a long time, and now he's pretty good at actually stacking his cups!  Sometimes he doesn't know which order is best, but his coordination has gotten a lot better.Bear stacking cups.We got to spend some time outside, which still isn't happening much.  The winter has been long and cold and snowy this year.  The forecast is finally starting to look promising, but this week it was cold and snowy again.  So that weekend was extra special just for being outside.  Granny's crocuses were just starting to bloom, and Monkey was fascinated with them.*Monkey inspecting a crocus.Bear liked being outside as well, but he was much more interested in getting dirty.  We went to a park nearby that wasn't really great for small kids, but it was something to do.  The swings (only one baby swing, but a lot of regular ones) were over a smooth pebbled gravel.  Bear spent most of the time there just digging his hands into it and throwing it around.  And then of course he started shoveling the rocks into his mouth...  A similar thing happened the next day out on the porch, but this time it was with the dirty in Grannys flower pots.  He was really intrigued with the way it ran through his hands.  It was super messy, but I let it go.  I've been working hard to let them discover the world, even though sometimes every inch of me is screaming against the dirty and mess and danger.Dirt is the best toy. One of the best things about going to West Virginia is that DS's mom can make the trip too. Having a great time with Granny J. We've fallen into a fairly nice routine since.  Now that both boys are walking, my days are filled with the literal sound of pitter pattering feet as they chase each other around the living room.  They can climb on pretty much every piece of furniture we have, so nothing in that room is safe anymore.  Just the other day Bear pushed their castle slide over to their high chairs and used it as a ladder to reach his lunch scraps (kid seriously loves food). I'm still trying to get monthly photos with the Care Bear, but it's harder to remember now that the months are such big milestones.  The days seem very long, and yet the weeks and months just slide by.  Time is a weird thing.  But here is what it's like getting them now.  This one was only a half month late :P14.5 months==========================[...]



A list of things I am currently loving:

  • I've spent the week with one of my very best friends at their place in Boston.  I haven't seen them but about 3 times since leaving Santa Barbara, and it's been like a balm to my soul.
  • I've eaten like a king since I've been here.
  • That includes massive amounts of King Cake.
  • Monkey has been waddling around their living room with his hands clasped behind his back.  I have no idea where he learned that, but it's so funny to see a teeny tiny person do it.
  • Bear is currently in a sunny corner reading a book about dinosaurs, which has a roar button. He actually mimics the roar.  It's fantastic.
  • Bear has also taken an interest in sausage, and was enthralled to watch it being made this morning.  I'm really looking forward to being able to include them both in the kitchen and cooking.
  • Both boys have started randomly snuggling me throughout the day on their own.
There are more things, but the day is getting away from me.



Things have been difficult around here.  A slow build up of one thing after another, with no breaks, no relief.  Yesterday things came to a head and I just broke down.  I spent some time sobbing on my kitchen floor while the kids napped.  That uncontrolled kind where the sounds coming out of you aren't even really human.  Not my best moment.This week, DS is off in California for a conference.  Taking care of the kids by myself from dawn to dusk and then some is beyond exhausting.  It doesn't help that we've been snowed in for the past month.  Longer if you count the time before when it was just too cold to take them outside.  They're also going through a mental leap right now, and the start of those is always filled with tears.  They were better today.  We always seem to have one day of each leap's fussy phase where it's nothing but tears and screaming from morning to night.  Hopefully it stays at the one.We seem to have a multitude of expenses since the new year.  Bear's emergency room bill came from his "I'm going to swallow a stick today" incident.  The washing machine broke.  My car failed inspection.  DS's car wasn't even starting.  Our tax return came at just the right time, but it's also a little depressing that it couldn't go to something more exciting.Do you know until a few weeks ago I'd never been separated for more than 3 hours from my kids?  And that one day I was I was doing something I hated and actually cried while I was out.  I still don't have any close friends here, though I've gained a few acquaintances.  One of those lives close and might turn into something; we'll see.  Basically, in the last 9 months or so, the only person I've had any contact with is DS.  As much as I love my kids, they aren't company in the sense I need.  It's incredibly lonely and disheartening to feel so cut off from the world.  It's not doing good things for my parenting skills either.I have this permanent soreness in my shoulders and neck from being tense all the time.  I know exercise would help, but finding the motivation has been difficult.  I feel so exhausted all the time.I'm just in a bad place.  I don't think I realized just how bad until DS left and I lost the one human contact I had.  I've started trying to dig myself out.  I had a play date today, and I'm going to some mom event in the neighborhood tomorrow with the boys.  I have some workout dvds coming for extra motivation on that front.  But a lot of this stuff I just don't think I can fix.  I can't seem to find a way to make extra money to cover things like a babysitter or a night out, or even taking off some of the stress of trying to figure out how to make it to the end of the month.  I mean, I don't want to give the impression that we're poor, because we're not.  But our budget is very tight right now.I'm trying to spend more time actively engaged with the kids, even though all I want to do is hide in another room and breathe.  I'm starting to fear that their skills are lagging behind because I'm not encouraging and working with them.  I know that comparatively, I'm not a bad parent.  They're happy, and fed, and healthy.  But I know I could be doing so much better with not all that much effort.  I wish I had some kind of "teacher's workbook" for parenting.  "Day 410: laugh 20 times, find all the red things in the house, sing 10 songs, read 5 books."  I do so much better with things when I have clear instructions. I'm looking forward to my husband coming home.  He acts like he doesn't do much around here, but I can tell you that I wasn't hyperventilating before he left.  I'm not sure how he handles everythin[...]

New Beginnings


Holy smokes.  It's been 6 months since I've posted anything.  I don't think I'm even going to try to back-post 6 months worth of stuff.We're currently in the throes of winter over here.  It's been pretty snowy already, which of course I love.  Though I do wish I didn't feel so unsure about taking the kids outside.  Somehow even in snowsuits, taking two 1 year olds outside to frolic seems like a bad idea.  It's also been pretty cold, especially in comparison to last winter where it almost never dropped below 40.  This is all to say that I've been spending a LOT of time not leaving the house.  I don't mind it nearly so much as I thought I would.  We do get out once a week for story time at the library, and I'm usually the one that does the weekly grocery shopping (though I let DS do it today because I was out yesterday).  That's twice a week.  Whoo!  Living on the edge!So I love winter, and the snow is lovely and awesome, but I won't be too sad when it warms up enough that I can start taking the boys to the park again.  I do sort of miss our daily walks to the train station to pick up DS after work.I can't remember if I've mentioned it, so I wanted to say that I've been sort of on the fence about how easily available I should be making photos of the kids on the internet.  I mean, it's the internet, so if someone wanted to get them they could, but that doesn't mean I have to make it simple.  So I might not put a lot here, but there are SO MANY on my Flickr account.  You just have to be signed in and marked as my friend or family.  (If you don't know how to do that and want to, just e-mail me.)  I will share this photo with you of them in their Christmas diapers though:I love it so much.  I really like the way you can tell the difference in their skin color here.We took them to the local children's museum last week.  DS's mom got us a membership for Christmas and I was anxious to get out of the house.  It's sort of geared for kids ages 3-7, but they have these slightly more contained areas with small features for the wee littles.  It was a lot of fun for them, and I was actually surprised we were able to stay an hour and a half.  That feels like a lifetime with a newly minted toddler.In non-kid news, I've started doing a little writing for the site Rhymes with Nerdy.  Currently, I'm just recapping the show Reign, but perhaps once that is over I'll stretch my wings a little.  We'll see.  It's more work than I expected, and to be honest, these days I'm doing really well if I manage to shower.  My days are certainly full.I also started a local Sci-fi/Fantasy book club.  I've been looking for a book club in general since moving here 3.5 years ago, but my efforts have failed until now.  This time I decided to bite the bullet and pay for the Meetup service, and that's been fruitful.  The first meeting drew about three people, and we average 3 or 4 for a bit with the members that came shifting.  Somehow in the last month though, it's just started to take off.  We're now up to 23 members on the site, with 13 of them saying they're coming to my house for the next meeting.  I'm probably going to need a new meeting place after this, which is nuts but so exciting.  Initially I wanted it here because it was easier with the babies to not have to leave, but I think we're getting to the point where I can slip away every now and again.  They tend to be scheduled after they go to bed anyhow.Which reminds me, I'm also the recording secretary for the local moms of multiples group, which is a national organization that has local chapters.  I'm still not sure how they managed to rope me into being a b[...]

Beta Reading and a Challenge


I have two friends that are writing novels.  They're both pretty good as far as I'm concerned.  I've had a little time off and on over the past.. year? or so to help them out and beta read for them, which has been a lot of fun for me.  Hopefully it's been helpful for them.  They write different types of things, but one thing most fiction seems to encompass in some form or another is love/sex.  This can be a hard thing to write about, even if you don't think anyone else will read it.  If you're trying to get published, I imagine the pressure is.. more.

So I'm talking to one of these friends tonight about this topic; writing something that makes you uncomfortable.  She mentioned how the word "folds" in relation to.. relations, made her squeamish.  "Please don't make me use the word "folds" in that manner."  I decided to do it for her.

"he folds down the sheets, inviting her to join him"

"he folds his arms around her waist, snuggling her closer"

"she folds his money into her wallet, a job well done"

She felt dirty.  I felt as though my job was accomplished.  Perhaps I should become a snippet author.  Is there a market for that?

What is this nonsense?


I think pregnancy might have screwed up my body.  DS says it screwed up my brain, which is also a valid theory.

Lately I've been feeling chilly in my house, and my a/c is only set at 74 during the day.  Maybe this is what you consider chilly for a/c, I don't know, but I am on record saying I can't handle temperatures over 75.  So you can see why I would be surprised by this chilliness.

After a lifetime of experience, I just assume it's better not to go outside if it's in the upper 80's or anything above, so I haven't had a lot of time to have this theory challenged lately.  The last few days it's been in the 90's with heat indexes near 100.  On Saturday, DS and I took the boys on a walk to the Farmer's Market in the morning.  We needed the vegetables and they needed out of the house.  I was pretty sure that was going to be my only chance to get out due to the heat.

I survived.  I even thought it wasn't that bad.  Later that day DS got antsy, so he headed outside to attack some english ivy with a hatchet.  I don't know why, but I decided to go help.  I worked hard in super hot weather and didn't even feel faint.  The next day, I went outside and thought it was lovely weather for laying in the sun.  I mean, what is even wrong with me?

Today it was cooler, and I thought it was almost chilly outside.

I just don't even know who I am anymore.  I turned the a/c up to 76 and I'm still sitting here with a blanket.

Quiet Alone Time


My favorite time?  Probably not, though I cherish it.  I cannot live without it.  Hearing my kids laugh, and then having my husband laugh at them laughing, that's my favorite time.  I can't even describe to you how awesome that is.  I was talking with another twin mom the other day and one of her friends who chose not to have kids asked, "Other than graduation and getting married, are there any high points to having kids?"  She seriously thinks that having children is a life sucking drudgery with a few bright spots.  I can see why she decided not to have them.  I myself didn't realize just how much my days would be filled with bright spots.  Monkey has found his toes, and they're both rolling over.  They get better at it every day, soon it will be on purpose more often than not.  Parenthood.  It is a gift.  A gift you work hard for.  So much better than the first 4 months had me believe.

My mom and her husband are in town for Memorial Day.  So of course I've eaten something that has the kids super pukey, haha!  Whoops.  Tip: Bring an extra shirt when you come to my house.  I'm so happy they've made it up here.  I know my mom takes the distance especially hard right now, so I'm always grateful when she gets time with the babes.  They were having a bit of stranger danger the first day, but today was pretty good.  Laughter and grilled pork chops and a trip to store to buy flowers for the yard.  There was a moment when I had Monkey in my lap and I turned in a way that put my hair over his head.  My mom thought it was hilarious, so we spent some time fashioning wigs for boys with our own hair and taking pictures.

Tomorrow they'll be 5 months old.  What.

I finished A Storm of Swords, and it was amazing.  So much insanity.  I kind of want to start the next one already, but I also promised to beta read something.  Perhaps I'll try to do both at the same time.

I was going to spend this time watching the finale of The Office (US), but I can't bring myself to finish it just yet.  I'm not ready for it to be over.  I do this with books too, taking my time getting around to the final book.  My brain seems to think that as long as I haven't finished it, the world still exists.  It's more real.  I don't understand it.  So instead I'm writing this.  And then I plan to try to catch up with the Fug Girls.

Mother's Day 2013


Today was so lovely!  I got to sleep in until 10am.  HOLY COW!  Half the time even when DS is home in the mornings giving me the possibility of more sleep, the babes will wake me up with their squalling.  They were so good!

I got my choice of breakfast, which was even offered in bed.  I chose not to eat there though, because I've been insanely clumsy since the babies were born and I rather like my bed dry.  Thankfully that clumsiness seems to not include baby handling.  So far.

The kids got me stuffed representations of themselves, and there was a card from each of them with little notes inside.  DS also got me a card with a gift card to Home Depot for plants for my garden, permission to buy myself a patio lounge, and homemade coupons.  They crack me up, especially the one for breakfast in bed that says around the edges, "OMG! WTF! BBQ!"  He asked if I knew what it was, and I don't, but he never explained.

The weather was gorgeous today.  We went for a walk and got some ice cream and sat on a bench at the train station.  We got the best frozen turkey pot pie I've ever had for dinner.  It was like it was homemade, which is probably why it was a bit pricey.  Those were quality ingredients!  I had my choice of dinners and I wouldn't have expected that's what I'd pick, but I saw it in the store and couldn't resist.  We stopped at the park on the way home to attempt the kids in swings again.  I forgot how necessary extra blankets were to keeping them steady last time, and Bear very quickly knocked his head on the swing when he tipped forward.  Of course there was another mom in the park, and of course she looked at me like, "seriously, you just put your 4 mo old kid in that spacious swing?"  But she graciously said nothing and was nice to us while we were there.

DS got some lovely pictures of me with the boys, which I adore.  I'm rarely in their photos because I'm usually taking them, so I'm happy to have these.  I also have video of DS tickling Monkey and him laughing hysterically.  It's so amazing.  DS was laughing so hard he teared up a bit.

I had a nice long conversation with my own mother, who I'll be seeing in 2 weeks.  DS got to talk to his as well.  There was also a super long bubble bath, my first in the new house.  The tub is smaller than I want, but perhaps one day we'll make improvements and I can fulfill my dream of submerging my whole body at will.  The important thing is that the water was hot, the bubbles were plenty, and I was able to read in peace for as long as I wanted.  It was bliss.  I can't remember the last time I was that pruney, and I'm known for my long showers.

Today was a perfect balance of relaxing, peaceful, indulgent, and fun.  I hope I can provide DS with something just as nice on Father's Day.

Thoughts on the Eve of My First Mother's Day


I am excited for tomorrow.  My first Mother's Day as an actual mom!  I was pregnant this time last year, but it's totally not the same.  My husband has already started pampering me.  I got french toast for breakfast this morning, and he knew I was close to serious business happening in A Storm of Swords so I got dedicated reading time.  I even went to a local herb sale this morning to stock up on new plants for this summer's garden.Motherhood is not at all how I imagined it.  All I could compare it to beforehand was owning cats.  I love my cats so much.  DS and I have always called them our children.  "How are the kids, are they behaving?"  I would think about how much I love Winston and try to extrapolate that.  Honestly, it kind of scared me.  I thought I might bust if I felt that much.So it was a bit disappointing when I didn't feel like I would explode at the seams with love.  Maybe some of that was how long I had to wait to see them after they were born.  But my love for them has been more of a work in progress.  I'm not sure this is a bad thing.  Maybe I did love them oh so much, but I have to say that my emotions were strange in general after I had them.  So many hormones and physical trauma to recover from.  And then there was the NICU stay, and the reflux, and the learning to breastfeed, and the doing it all with no one around to help us.  Life was hard, and I was tired, and sometimes I wanted to punt my children off the balcony. But imagine if I'd felt this huge swell of love at first, and then felt all that stuff afterwards.  Would I have thought I was falling out of love with them?  That would have been so horrible.  This way seems better now that I've lived it.  Even while experiencing all the extremely trying moments two tiny babies bring in the early months, I knew I would not give them up for anything.  And that one certain feeling has blossomed into something joyful that is kind of amazing.I can't even describe to you the fierce pride I feel when one of them accomplishes a new thing.  Little things that prior to being a mother I would have thought it was silly to even notice.  Monkey's foot reached the ground in the Jumper today and he pushed.  It was the smallest gesture, and I was insanely proud of him.  Then later Monkey is bawling and puking and I'm rocking him, and Bear is just sitting in his little seat entertaining himself, and we lock eyes and it's like he says, "Don't worry Mom, I've got this, do what you need to do."  Heart melt.It's not always sunshine and rainbows (see above puke reference), but I am really enjoying finding all of those rainbows.  I'm even laughing that this came out of my mouth today: "It's okay, it's the pre-curdled kind.  That's the type of puke we like!"  I mean really, if love isn't why I said that happily, I don't want to know.DS has told me that he will try to manage the babies on his own as much as possible tomorrow.  I realized today that I wouldn't want to go a whole day without them.  I know I used to think it would be heavenly, and I still think breaks are good (like right now), but a whole day?  It would seem I look forward to those little turds.This is what happens when you have one baby that cries when you put him down (hence the carrier) and then the other one cries too.  It's cool, I've got this.So yeah, motherhood.  Different than I expected, but better I think.  Kind of reminds me how I felt when I met DS.  All the things I never knew I wanted.[...]

This is a conversation right?*


Life is weird right now.  I'm still trying desperately to finish unpacking things in our new house.  I'd really love for it to be done when my parents come to stay.  However, the boys are teething, so getting anything at all done feels like Herculean task.  I do manage a few things a day, some days more than others, so there's progress.  Just often of the snail variety.I feel like I'm forgetting what it's like to speak with adults in a real language.  Generally the only person I see is my husband.  We're currently getting about an hour where we calm babies and feed them and often can't hear each other, then maybe, if I'm lucky, an hour to sit zombie like on the couch.  Then he goes to bed so he can get up with them at 4:30 in the morning.  I like to take this time to myself as a sort of cleansing time.  It's sacred, even though it inevitably means I'll be tired tomorrow.  I just don't think I can handle having my every waking moment be twin time.  Having time to myself at night lets me enjoy their company the next day, even though those days are filled with drool, puke, and tears.They're getting to be more fun though.  Today Monkey was laughing as I threw him in the air, that's new.  I watched him play with this hole-y sphere thing with his hands.  Bear went from crying to explosive happiness when I brought him close to Monkey so they could interact.  These are lovely things and they make the crying times so much easier to handle.  But seriously, the teething is uncool.  It's not that it's the worst thing to deal with out of all the other issues we've dealt with, but more like it comes right when you feel like you've gotten a handle on the rest.  I thought we were there.  Parenting is kind of exhausting that way.  Other twin moms tell you, "It doesn't get easier, just different."  Yeah.  Awesome.  I see that.So it's this weird mix of amazing things and exhausting things and kind of sad things.  DS took Monkey to bed when he finally stopped crying tonight and never came back.  He didn't even eat dinner.This will be my first Mother's Day this weekend.  I want to sleep in.  I want to play Sim City for a few hours.  I kind of want brunch and a trip to the zoo, but I don't want to deal with other people.  I want a lounge chair so I can sit in my new yard and read a book and enjoy the weather.  I hope the weather is enjoyable.  If not for lounging outside, I'll take a strong thunderstorm too.My mom sent me chocolate covered strawberries for Mother's Day.  They're huge and decadent and delicious and were totally unexpected.  I love them. I have thoughts brewing for Father's Day; trying to narrow them down.There's a fly in my house.  Sometimes I think I hate flies more than spiders.  Spiders might terrify me, but they keep flying by my face when I'm sleeping either.A Song of Ice and Fire.. man.  I wish someone was reading at the exact same pace as me so I could have completely spoiler free conversations as I go.Is there anything better than baby laughter?I am so starved for human interaction that I actually got into a debate on the internet today.  It was about something I didn't even care about really, and I was just initially offering a possible alternate viewpoint because it bothers me when people think things are black and white.  Maybe sometimes they are, but usually they're messy.  I actually chose to continue debating this topic after I started getting queasy  which always happens to me [...]

We bought a house


So... We bought a house.  We've been here several days and I'm still finding it weird to think that this is ours.  It still feels like we're visiting someone else.  This is the first time in at least 10 years that my residence hasn't been temporary.  I'm finding that I'm putting much more thought into what stays and what goes and where it will live.  It means unpacking is slow, but it feels much more important that things be right somehow than in our previous abodes.DS entering the house for the first time after signing the paperwork.There are a lot of things to love about this place.  We came for the school district and the walkability of the town.  It's a mile walk to the train station and downtown, which means I can easily meet DS on his way home from work or take the kids to the library without the car.  It also means DS can continue not driving to work.  Apparently, when he takes the express train the commute is about the same as when we were in the city despite now being 10 miles away.The town itself is just gorgeous.  We joke that we have the crappiest house in town, because everything here is just so big and lovely and well cared for.  Not that our house is crappy, but in comparison.  I want my yard to be as lovely as the ones around us.  There are so many lovely plants and flowers here.  The view out the front picture window.  Lots of flowering trees.There are so many plans I'd like to tackle over time, probably in part because I've never been able to physically alter my living space before.  We'd love to add a second shower, add some cabinets to the kitchen.  If we decide to never move, I'd like to look into adding a master bedroom suite over the living room.  It's a split level house so it seems feasible, but in reality I don't know next to nothing about construction.  But first we need things like a lawn mower.  It's already past time to cut the grass, haha!One of the flowering trees across the street after a good rain. Taken on today's walk to meet DS at the train station.My mom is coming towards the end of May to visit the babes and I kind of wish she could come now. So many things are in bloom, and it just feels like a magical place when I'm walking around.  I want to share that.  I'll share it with you too, just come over and see us :)[...]



I wish I were hibernating, that would be more restful.  The blog sure has been though, three and a half months of silence.  Whoops!  Lots has happened, the main thing of course being the birth of our twins, affectionately known as Bear and Monkey on December 28.  They've kept us more than a little busy, and we're still trying to get our feet under us in terms of routine and "normal" things.

DS has been taking his daddy duties very seriously.
We're in the process of house hunting.  It's something we started last spring and then decided to put off to gather a better down payment.  Now that the boys are here it's time to pull the trigger.  We need the space, and I'm sure the neighbors would appreciate not having them crying in the middle of the night.  We would certainly appreciate not hearing every little thing they do.  We're pretty excited about it, but it's also exhausting.  There is so much to consider; schools, neighborhoods, walkability, yearly taxes.  And then once you finally find something the paperwork involved is mind numbing.

This weekend we have friends coming in from Brooklyn.  They're expecting their first baby boy towards the end of the summer, and we're going to hit up the local Moms of Multiples sale to see if we can score some good things at a cheap price.  Babies need too much stuff that costs a ton without long usage, so I'm all about buying things gently used.

The last time we had friends come stay to meet the babies they were still very fussy.  Lots of crying.  They've recently started coming out of that, so here's hoping this weekend goes well.

Beautiful Fall Day


Today we put together the lovely dresser that DS's mom got us. I really like it.  I wasn't much help, but I am pretty good at following directions.  There was also a point when all the crossover bits were installed on one side of the dresser, so it had to be held up.  I helped out there too.  The rest was all DS.

Still slowly working on the nursery.  The wall stickers are up, most of the furniture is where I want it, I've filled up the dresser.  The clothes are all washed and put away.  Diapers are prepped.  Still need to sew up all the cloth wipes.  That's going better now that I've converted the coffee table into a fabric cutting station.  Way easier than the floor.  Once those are done, I guess I'll start on the little crochet sea creatures I want to make for the insulated wall.

Also, in case you missed it, there are some new backposts linked over there on the right!  I think I'm all caught up now.

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