Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year, New Beginnings

It doesn't quite feel like New Year's Eve to me.

In the past, New Year's Eve was exciting to me. Staying up past midnight, partying with friends, and drinking were of course a must. Who WOULDN'T do that on New Year's Eve, after all?

Last year was a very different New Year. I was in the hospital, on bed rest for preterm labor with the twins. I watched some of the festivities on television, but some of my day and evening was spent walking back and forth around my room (yes, against doctor's orders), squatting, and doing jumping jacks (again, against doctor's "wishes"), all in the hopes of bringing on my labor and having the first babies of the New Year in the hospital. HA! It seems so pathetic now that I think about it.

I was in bed way before midnight last year, and woke like normal in the new year, still pregnant, but excited to hear the news that my "neighbor" in the room next to mine gave birth to the first baby of the new year overnight, her premature but very healthy baby boy!

This year will be close to the same as last year, with a few differences. I'm not in the hospital. I'm not 8 months pregnant. But, I will be going to bed before midnight. I can barely make it to 10 or 11 p.m. without feeling like I'm going to keel over from the exhaustion of the day.

One thing will be very different for me as an individual though. A new year, for me, means a new beginning. A chance to start from scratch and be a better, more mature friend, sister, daughter, wife, mother, and all around, a better individual. I will strive to be the best I can be in the new year. I have not been happy with myself at times during this year, and how I have handled certain situations, but that will all change with this new year. I want to leave everything behind, and move on, look to the future for my well being, and the well being of my family.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas FUN!

We had a wonderful first Christmas with our babies! It was my favorite, best Christmas in my entire life, and I am sure there are many more to come!

On Christmas Eve, we went to my uncle's house to dinner and presents with my parents and sisters, nieces and nephews. It was a great time and the babies got a lot of nice stuff. From my family, their gifts included:

A Leap Frog Learning Table
A train that rolls along the floor and pops out balls as it goes
A palm tree that pops out balls
A HUGE foam alphabet floor puzzle
Foam letters and numbers for the bath
Collectible diamond spoon ornaments
A bunch of outfits

Frank got a nice shirt from his secret Santa (my Godfather), and I got some really nice lotions and perfumes from my sister Erin, who was my secret Santa. We also got a gift card from my parents, and some homemade goodies from my other sister. It was such a nice time visiting with family and enjoying the holidays.

We were so excited for Christmas morning with the babies! We got up around 6 or 7, and I started the monkey bread. The babies woke up and had their milk, and then attacked their presents! From us, they got:

A pink walker/learning table that plays music, lights up, and talks
A "bug" ball that teaches shapes, letters, numbers, etc. (Pics below)
A gum ball machine that lights up, plays music, and pops out balls
Building blocks
Stuffed animals
Connor got Chuck the Truck and all his little "buddies"
A "tool table"
Some nice books that will make for some great bedtime stories!

I know there's a lot more, I just can't remember it all off the top of my head!

Later on Christmas day, we bundled the babies up and took them out sliding for the first time! It was a HIT! No meltdowns, but it was a little too cold, so we didn't stay out too long. After we were done with that, we headed to Frank's sister's house for a few minutes to collect our goodies there. From Aunt Crystal and her girlfriend, Aunt Elena, they got:

Merasia's new big girl car seat
A Rainforest booster seat/high chair
A "car wash" for the bath, made of foam so it floats on the water and it squirts the cars and it super cool and fun
A frog faucet cover and net for the side of the bath to hold their many, many bath toys
A fishing pole with three squirty toys and can really be used to "fish"
A shape sorter castle

I know there's a few more things on that list, but once again, I am drawing a blank as to what they are at the moment

They also got a few goodies from my birth mom, who stopped by with presents yesterday.

All in all, it was a wonderful holiday, and one I will cherish forever. The babies got sooo many great gifts and I am so thankful that we have such loving, supportive families around us to help take care of the babies, and to spoil them for great special occasions like their birthday and Christmas. ;-)

I have to say though, I am glad to see the holidays gone. It was stressful at times, and oh-so-exhausting! And I finally have all of the babies' old toys cleaned out and gone, and all of their new toys organized and set up, and am all caught up on the housework that was so sadly neglected for 2 or 3 days (a record for me!).

I hope everyone else had a wonderful holiday as well. Please, feel free to share what you did on Christmas, how you celebrated, and what kind of goodies your little ones got!

Oh, and before I forget, here are some photos from our Christmas festivities:

Smiley boy on Christmas morning!

Merasia, drinking some milk Christmas morning before attacking the presents!

This is one of our favorite Christmas gifts...Merasia's brand new big girl car seat! We've wanted this for a long time, and Frank's sister got it for us for Christmas. Merasia loves it and seems so much more comfy in this one than her infant seat. I have to admit I cried a little bit when we first put her in little girl is getting too big too fast! :-(

Aunt Crystal got the babies a Rainforest themed booster seat! They loved it so much, and it completes our collection of Rainforest stuff that we have! They loved it so much we had to go out the next day and get a second one so they could each have one and not fight over getting to use it! LOL

They both loooved this ball! It rolls along the floor and plays 5 or 6 different "games" and songs that teach numbers, shapes, letters, etc.

Connor playing with his "tools:"

Connor loved getting new books for bedtime stories!

She looooves it!!

Merasia opening her pink walker/table!!

Connor & Merasia LOVED their new Leap Frog learning table from Aunt Rachel:

Merasia liked the boxes more than the gifts inside at our family Christmas Eve:

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve

It's Christmas Eve! This is one of the days I have been looking forward to all year.

Every Christmas Eve, my (adopted) family gets together to do presents and dinner. All of my sister have our own families now, so Christmas day is devoted to doing our own things, but Christmas Eve is all about family, family, family! I love it.

We usually get together at my parent's house, but since they are renting their home out while they live in their new home in the Virgin Islands, we are doing it at my uncle's house this year. Last year it was at my uncle's as well, but I was in the hospital, on bed rest for preterm labor at this time. This year I can actually enjoy it!

In the past, everybody has bought presents for everybody, but this year, with money being so tight for everyone and the economy being the way it is, all of the adults drew names for Secret Santa and only bought for that one person, unless they wanted to buy for more. I baked breads for our secret Santas, and for everyone else, we are giving Christmas cards with pictures of the babies.

I am even more excited for our family festivities this year because the babies will get to experience their first Christmas and I can't wait to see all their gifts! I am excited for NEW TOYS!! I'm sick of playing with the same old toys everytime I play with the babies!

Tomorrow morning, we will wake up, make Monkey Bread, open presents with the babies, and then bundle them up and take them out sliding for the very first time! I hope they enjoy it and don't get too cranky from being too hot/cold/scared, etc.

I will be sure to post lots of photos from these next few days!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

One Year Ago Today...

Me, the day after I was transported to Fletcher Allen Heath Care, in Burlington, Vermont, for preterm labor at 32 weeks gestation, with my twins:

It's been a year already. No, not since my babies were born. Not since we found out we were pregnant. Not since we found out we were having twins.


One year since I called my doctor, told him I leaked some fluid and was "kind of" crampy, and ended up in the hospital, in active labor.

It was all a blur at first, and very overwhelming. I was contracting, dilating, and 70% effaced. I got set up with an IV for meds to slow my contractions down with the hope of stopping my labor altogether, while they prepared an ambulance to transport me an hour and a half away, to the only hospital in Vermont with a NICU. We thought we would be parents within a few days.

Boy, were we WRONG!

Over the next 24-48 hours, I lost the rest of my mucous plug, continued to dilate, and in the end, dilated to 4 cm. and 80% effaced, and that's where I sat. For THREE whole WEEKS. I looked forward to my shower every morning, as it was the one time I was by myself, out of my room, besides the one 30 minute wheel chair ride I was allowed to take when Frank was there with me. ;-) I spent my days catching up on my soaps, watching Jon + Kate Plus Eight, 18 Kids and Counting, and Dirty Jobs. I read baby books, baby magazines, did word searches, texted friends and family, shed tons of tears all due to frustration/home sickness/loneliness, and for no reason at all at times. I did jumping jacks when the nurse wasn't in the room with me, in hopes of bringing on contractions, getting the babies out, and thus being able to have more freedom (and no more big, heavy belly). It didn't work. They were stubborn.

And now, looking back, it's fine that they were stubborn. Because when they finally were born, 3 weeks later, the night I was discharged and able to go home, and born at our local hospital that was closer to home for us and our friends and family, it was all so perfect, and totally worth it.

It's crazy how fast a year flies!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

11 Months Old

My babies are 11 months old. Well, 11.5 months now, technically. ;-)

At 11 months, Connor:

-Creeps everywhere
-Pulls up to hands and knees and rock back and forth
-Smiles, laughs, giggles, etc.
-Growls (ha!)
-Sleeps all night every night
-Has 5 teeth and is working on the 6th
-Takes two naps a day, ranging from 2-4 hours each
-Eats 8 oz. of formula, every 4 hours
-Is weaned from bottles and takes all formula and liquids from sippy cups
-Loves to eat solids, but only gets 2 meals a day, otherwise he doesn't sleep well and is up with a belly ache :-(
-Says "ma-ma-ma-ma," "da-da-da-da," and "ba-ba-ba-ba"
-Blows raspberries
-Throws temper tantrums
-Jumps in his jumperoo and loooves it
-Sits up ASSISTED and can sip unassisted only for a few minutes before falling over, and you have to stay next to him to catch him when he falls
-Holds own sippy cup
-Feeds self finger foods
-Weighs 19 lbs., 14 oz.
-Is 29.5 inches tall
-Sucks his thumb

At 11 months, Merasia:

-Pulls self up to stand on everything and everyONE
-Cruises along furniture
-Pulls up to stand and lets go for a few minutes at a time before falling
-Takes steps holding on to her walking/riding toy
-Smiles, laughs, giggles, etc.
-Growls (ha!)
-Sleeps (most of the time) all night every night, or self soothes herself back to sleep
-Has 4 teeth
-Takes two naps a day, ranging from 2-4 hours each
-Eats 8 oz. of formula, every 4 hours
-Is weaned from bottles and takes all formula and liquids from sippy cups
-Loves to eat solids, but only gets 2 meals a day, otherwise she doesn't sleep well and is up with a belly ache :-(
-Says "ma-ma-ma-ma," "da-da-da-da," and "ba-ba-ba-ba"
-Blows raspberries
-Throws temper tantrums
-Jumps in his jumperoo but much perfers to be all over the house, crawling and exploring everywhere
-Sits well unassisted
-Can get to a sitting position from crawling or standing, and vice versa
-Feeds self finger foods
-Weighs 20 lbs., 15 oz.
-Is 29 inches tall
-Sucks her thumb/fingers

As you can see, though they are twins, they are very different developmentally and in their personalities.

It doesn't seem possible to me that almost a year has gone by since we welcomed these teeny, tiny preemie babies into our family.

Though I miss those tiny babies dearly, I looove having these two fun loving, mobile, crazy, amazing almost toddlers to play with and (occasionally) snuggle as well. ;-)

Wordless Wednesday: New Toy!

Connor & Merasia's first Christmas present, from our good friends, Jenn and Terry!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Take Me Back Tuesday

Dear Merasia...

Dear Merasia,

Please stop standing at the baby gate and screaming at me while I mix your formula in the kitchen. It's slightly annoying. I'm going as fast as I can, I know you're hungry, and I know you're a bit of a drama queen at times, but really. It's gotta stop. It was cute at first. It's not anymore. :-)

Oh, and also, please stop fussing and crying everytime I turn my back away from your or leave the room. I am coming back. Trust me. Everywhere I go, you go, so I'm not going to leave and not come back. Don't you know that by now?

Probably not. But that's okay. Regardless of how frustrating or annoying it is when you do these things, all of the times that you smile and laugh and do your snorty face at me, or I hear the pitter patter of your hands and knees as you crawl from room to room, squealing the entire way...those are the beautiful moments that make up for the not-so-pretty ones.


Thursday, December 10, 2009

Holiday/1 Year Photos Are DONE! :-))

We received our holiday/1 year photos last night! They came out GREAT! I am in love with them all!! Check them out, and tell us what you think. ;-)