Friday, August 13, 2010

Mommy's Little Klutz-Part 1

Sophie passing the time at Hasbro ER.
There is never a dull moment when you have twins and Wednesday night was no exception.  I took the girls to the park at 5:30 to let them run off some energy.  All was going well until I saw Sophie fall.  There was screaming, there was bleeding, and there was her sister kicking her shoes off at the same time!  I finally managed to get both girls into the car and I took a look at Sophie's injuries.  That is when I saw that the fingernail on her left ring finger was dangling off.  I don't mean a hangnail...I mean the whole fingernail was just about off!  Luckily, I had a bandaid in the car so I wrapped that around it and sped home.  Our neighbor happened to come over a few minutes after I arrived home and since he is trained in first aid, I had him look at it.  He said the words that I was dreading, "You need to go to Hasbro."  If you are not from here, Hasbro is our local children's hospital.  We were looking at a loooooong night!  I packed up her binky, her lovey, some diapers, wipes, drinks (apple juice for her, vodka for me), and a few snacks.  We arrived at the hospital by 6:45. 

We were directed to sit in the waiting room after we had checked in.  When we were taken into triage a few minutes later, the CNA told me that we would probably be sent down to Fast Tracks which is similar to a walk-in.  I was relieved.  Maybe we wouldn't be there as long as I had feared.  I asked the CNA if she could get me some hospital socks since I had forgotten shoes for Sophie in my rush to get her to the hospital.  She said she would be right back and left us in the room.  About 15 minutes later, a nurse came over and asked if she could help us.  When I told her we were waiting for socks, she got another girl to get them and then told us that there was no way we would be heading to Fast Tracks.  "She is going to need stitches," she said.  My heart sank.  I've had stitches and they hurt! 

We were sent back to the waiting room with our beautiful orange slipper socks.  They looked very cute on Sophie's feet even if they were a bit big.  The first two hours we waited really weren't that bad.  Sophie colored, watched a movie, and even was serenaded by a violinist playing "The Itsy Bitsy Spider."  She was quite happy!

It was at about 9:00 when things started to turn ugly.  Sophie was over tired and she got silly.  She began running around the waiting room in her slipper socks which almost caused another injury!  I decided that holding her would be my best bet which was met with screaming, thrashing, and kicking!  I was just about to lose my mind when our name was called.

To be continued....

Monday, July 26, 2010

Happy 39th Birthday, Da!

Today Rick turned 39. I know what you're can I possibly be married to someone so much older than me (well, only by 2 years but who's counting??)? Luckily, he was given an unexpected day off so we let him do whatever he wanted. I was really surprised when he suggested that we spend some time at the park and the library. If you know Rick, he's not exactly a bibliophile. I was a little nervous that the library might fall down when he stepped in there!

The girls really love going to the library. They love books and enjoy seeing Happy, the guinea pig. Today they discovered a new talent...typing!

La La La La!  Elmo's song!
I could tell Rick was really touched when we let him take us for a ride! Since it was his birthday, he got to pick the music. Who knew he was such a Sesame Street fan?

After dinner, we lit a candle and sang Happy Birthday to him.  Then, we stuffed our faces with cupcakes.  These divas can eat!
Lindsay is very serious about her food!
Sophie is happiest when she is eating.

Happy Birthday, Honey!  We love you!
Da loves his little divas!

Friday, July 23, 2010

If You Don't Have Anything Nice to Say... (Part 1)

I took the girls to Gymboree the other day and got a little more than I bargained for.  It was a slow day at class and a couple of pregnant moms were sitting around chatting.  I was playing with the divas and wasn't paying too much attention until I overheard the following conversation:

Preggo #1:  Do you know how lucky those women are that get hospitalized bed rest?  They get massages and pedicures.  I mean, I guess it sucks if your kid ends up in the NICU but those services are all free for them and they get a beautiful new room in the NICU!

Preggo #2:  Wow!  That must be so nice!

At this point I turned to my friend, Marge, who was rolling her eyes.  If you don't know my story, I was on hospitalized bed rest for 7 weeks and the divas were in the NICU for 3 months.  I took a deep breath before I spoke because what I wanted to say wouldn't have been appropriate in front of small children.

Me:  Yeah, well, I was on hospitalized bedrest for 7 weeks and let me tell you, when you are fighting for your babies' lives day in and day out, no massage or pedicure can make up for that.  And the NICU really does suck.  We spent 3 months there.

Preggo #2:  Did you have your own room at least?

Me (eyes bulging):  No, we were in the old NICU and I wouldn't have felt any better if we had had a private room!

At this point both preggos, and the Gymboree teacher, were looking at their feet and not saying much.  I'm sure that I ruined their wonderful discussion on elective C-Sections and where they were going to get their nails and hair done before the big day. 

Look, I get that most women have a "normal" pregnancy and that they had no idea what I had been through.  I also understand that I have a slight chip on my shoulder because of everything my family has gone through.  I guess the point I'm trying to make is that it's a pretty ignorant to go on about how "lucky" someone is when their child's or children's lives are at stake.  I would have traded places with those women in a minute if it meant that my daughters wouldn't have had to struggle so hard for their lives.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Little Divas Mommy: It's Getting Hot in Here

Little Divas Mommy: It's Getting Hot in Here

It's Getting Hot in Here

The heat wave that we are having in the East is killing me and the divas.  We try to get out in the morning and go to the library, Nana and Pa's, or to the beach.  We're home by 11:30 and in for naps by noon.  All three of us.  I am lucky in that the girls usually sleep until 2:30 or 3.  That is, except for tomorrow, because I have broken the unwritten rule among mommies and bragged about my childrens' nap schedule.  I digress.
After nap, though, it gets pretty warm in our living room.  I tried to get daddy (theirs, not mine) to put in central air but he wasn't having it.  I guess he has little sympathy for us since he is on a roof all day long!  So, the girls and I manage to keep ourselves cool by engaging in some fun activites.

Lindsay gets very serious about her domestic duties and cooks up some tasty treats and...

 cleans the house.


Sophie is more like me and enjoys the simple pleasures in life...

like chatting to her friends on her iPhone, "I know it, Curly Shirley, this heat is killing me too.  All I want to do is sit on the couch and eat munchkins."

Sometimes the heat really gets to her and I find her standing in a Huggies box staring into space.

Both girls are avid TV watchers so a little Elmo helps pass the time.

There is one pasttime, though, that we all enjoy...

sitting in their air conditioned bedroom reading bedtime stories.

Goodnight little divas.  Sleep tight.  Mommy loves you.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Life Really Is a Beach!!

I normally wouldn't post a picture of myself in a bathing suit on the internet but I felt compelled to show my readers that on our second visit to the beach I was able to sit down for a few minutes! Today was a much better day for Pa and me and there were no legal or illegal drugs involved!  And yes, the divas were with us!

We decided to bring a lot less with us this time.  We packed the beach buggy with towels, chairs, a small lunch box, a beach bag, and beach toys.  That was it.  We also got lucky because it was high tide so we didn't have to walk far to reach the water.  Pa and I also lowered our expectations quite a bit.  Let's face it, we knew it couldn't be worse than last time!  The girls enjoyed doing many things at the beach.  I even got to take some pictures of them this time!

Sophie enjoyed the surf and the water splashing in her face.  She also loved digging in the sand this time which is when I was finally able to sit down.

Lindsay entertained herself by making sand angels.

Both girls loved working together to see what happens when sand and water meet.

All in all, it was a very relaxing day.  After the beach, the divas enjoyed a two-and-a-half hour nap at Nana and Pa's.  Upon waking up, they were treated to snack and a movie.  Gotta love Nana's house!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Life is a Beach? (Part 2): The Departure

Yesterday, I detailed our day (okay 93 minutes!) at the beach.  Today, I will tell you about trying to depart the beach with my little divas.  It was quite an experience.

My father and I had decided that we could last until about 11:00.  At 10:15, he looked at me and said, "I think we need to go."  He had a look of exhaustion on his face but insisted that he only wanted to leave because he didn't want the girls to get burnt.  Mind you, I think I created another oil spill in the Atlantic Ocean from all the sunscreen I put on them but I allowed my tired dad to use his concern for their skin as an excuse. 

I turned to my water logged daughters and said, "Okay, time to go home!"  Their response was not one of excitement or even feigned agreement.  This is what I heard, "NOOOOO!  NOOOOO!  WAH!!!!!!!"
I turned to Pa and told him to take Lindsay and I would take Sophie.  I picked her up and she kicked and screamed all the way back to the blanket.  When I set her down to pack up the beach cart, she ran towards the water again.  I ran after her, picked her up as she wailed, and brought her back to the blanket.  You know where this is going, don't you?  Yup!  Back and forth about 20 times.  Finally, she just laid down in the sand with her sister and screamed. 

Once I had packed just about everything I picked Sophie up and told Pa that we were heading to the outdoor showers and to meet us there.  Again, Sophie screamed as if she was being beat.  At this point, it was closing in on triple digit temps and I had had it.  I turned to her and in my best imitation of my mother I gritted my teeth and said, "Knock it off!  Now that is enough, Sophie!"  Didn't really work but made me feel better.

I got Sophie "cleaned up" and I use that phrase loosely because have you ever tried to clean a child up at the beach?  It's a joke!  I got some of the sand off of her in the shower but when I went to change her,  more sand magically appeared.  It was like that old toy with the picture of the bald guy and you have to use the little red pencil and drag the sand to make his beard.  I felt like Sophie had one of those magnetic pencils attached to her and that she was dragging the sand with her.

After about a half hour, Pa and I had cleaned both girls and ourselves up enough to get in the car.   On our drive home, we discussed what we would do differently the next time we went to the beach and what we needed to bring.  I came up with the following items:
  • Valium (bring extra if you are going to be there the whole day)
  • Margarita mix
  • Tequila
  • Shin Guards (these are for when it's time to leave and your child is kicking you)
We're hoping that these items will make our next trip to the beach more enjoyable!  Cheers!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Life is a Beach? (Part 1)

I want to start out my post today by admitting that I have huge expectations for just about everything; Christmas, 4th of July, birthday parties, painting my nails, etc...  You get the point.  I think that whatever "big" thing we're doing will be like something you'd see on TV.  It will be so perfect and people will look at us and say, "Wow, what a great family.  I wish my kids could act like that.  That mom must really have it together."  That is why when I chose to take the girls to the beach, I had this picture in my head of them sitting on the blanket, digging in the sand, playing in the water when I wanted them to but happily getting out when I asked them to.  What I experienced was vastly different and I'm sure the only thing people were saying about me were, "Look at that hot mess!"

I am a girl who likes to be prepared.  Prior to even getting the beach sticker I had googled what you should bring to the beach if you have toddlers.  This is what the majority of people suggested:  an umbrella, beach blanket, beach toys, swim diapers, extra clothes, extra bathing suits, sunscreen, water shoes, towels, snacks, juice, and beach chairs.  Check, check, check!  I packed all of those things in my car last night.  I was taking my dad with me to help out so last night I called him and we strategized about how to make this a great morning at the beach.  Everything was in place!

I picked up Pa (my dad) at about 8:45 and we headed to Gooseberry Beach in Newport.  We dropped our cooler and our rolling beach cart with all of our supplies at the walkway and parked.  So far, so good.  The girls even followed us onto the sand and didn't wander off.  This beach thing will be a piece of cake, I thought.  Trouble didn't arise until I tried to put up the umbrella.  I had bought it at the Christmas Tree Shop and the young guy there told me it didn't need a base.  And I guess it didn't if you wanted to pretend you were the Statue of Liberty all day and hold it in place!  That went back in the cart.  It was during this time that my father had walked down to the water with Sophie while I watched Lindsay.  I must have gotten distracted because the next thing I knew, Lindsay was almost in the water and my father was screaming at me.  I ran down and rescued my little fish and we started playing in the water. 

After about five minutes, Sophie's lips and even her tongue had turned blue so we went back to the blanket.  This, obviously, was not what my little divas had in mind!  They kicked, screamed, and hit all the way back.  The only thing that made them sit down was the promise of food.  They woofed down a whole bowl of berries like they had never seen food before and headed for the water again.  This back and forth continued for the rest of our time there. 

Now, as my two little pistols were shuttling back and forth, I took a minute to look around at the other mothers and children on the beach.  Surely, Pa and I weren't the only ones breaking a sweat. seemed we were.  I even started taking a poll.  It went something like this:

Me:  How old is your child?
Unsuspecting Stranger (US):  18 months, and yours?
Me:  19 months.  Your little one seems to enjoy just sitting on the beach.  Did you happen to give her Benadryl on your way here?
Unsuspecting Stranger starts walking away, shaking her head in disgust.  I chase after her, begging for any tips she might have.  Hell, I'm not opposed to Benadryl if it means I'll be able to sit down for 5 minutes!

By 10:30, Pa and I were exhausted so we decided it was time to leave...

To Be Continued Tomorrow

Monday, June 28, 2010

The Lake

This weekend was our annual family reunion in Plymouth, Massachusetts. My Uncle Peter and Aunt Nanci were the gracious hosts once again for my father's 7 brothers and sisters and all of the extended family. There were about 40 of us. As a side note, my grandmother had 3 sets of twin boys and a girl in between each set. That's a whole other story.

I have such fond memories of going to Pete and Nanci's every summer. They live right up the street from a lake so we would pack bathing suits and go swimming for the day. My Uncle Peter is hilarious and makes all sorts of irreverent jokes. That is what we love about him. My Aunt Nanci has a heart of gold and I can always remember her yelling, "Oh my Gawd, Peter. That's gawgeous! Take a picture!" Peter happily obliged.
Here is Uncle Peter trying to go incognito!

Last summer I was hoping that we would have another family reunion in Plymouth so that I could introduce the girls to everyone.  For some reason it didn't happen.  This year, it almost took place in Newport but after a desperate e-mail to Uncle Pete (and a little coaxing from Aunt Nanci) it was decided that we would all gather in Plymouth.  Sophie and Lindsay would finally get to see where I spent some of my happiest times.

We got to the reunion around 1:00 and the girls got to meet their cousin Charlotte, who is only about a month older than them.  They got aquainted in the usual way; with food!
Once the girls had eaten a few pieces of sauce pizza and some fruit, it was time to swim in the lake!  Nana helped me get the girls in their swimsuits and Gampy and I quickly changed and put on ours.  Rick is not much for swimming in lakes so he bowed out.  His loss! 
Gampy and I carried the girls down to the lake and were eager to get in.  It was a warm, summer day and we knew the cool water would feel refreshing.  I got in first with Sophie who started splashing and laughing immediately.  Lindsay had the same reaction.  The bottom of the lake felt very familiar-sandy and a little slimy!  But I could have cared less.  I was too busy watching a new generation fall in love with my childhood paradise. 

My dad holding Sophie and me with Lindsay.

After our swim in the lake, we went back to the house to enjoy some dessert.  The girls had a great time exploring the woods near Pete and Nanci's.


But alas, they grew weary and it was time to go.  We carried them to the car, put all their gear away, and started our journey home.  It wasn't long before our little travelers were sound asleep.  Thanks again, Pete and Nanci, for another great reunion!  Love you guys!

Friday, June 25, 2010


I think that the world should be like Gymboree...covered in padded mats, full of things that anyone can touch, and filled with laughter and joy! I took the girls to a preview Gymboree class on Thursday and at the end of it one of the moms turned to me and said, "So, are you a convert?" Yes, I am!

For those of you who have never been to Gymboree, I'll give you a brief overview. They provide music, art, and gym classes. We went to a gym class so we were in a very large room with all sorts of mats to climb on, tunnels to crawl through, and parachutes to run under! Think first grade P.E. class back in the 80's. Fun, right? They do some structured activities every 10 minutes or so but you do not have to participate.

Lindsay is my less adventurous baby. She tends to sit and just watch what's going on. She's also a bit lazy. We like to refer to her as Lazy Lindsay or the Diva! So imagine my surprise when she got in the middle of the circle at Gymboree and danced like someone's drunk uncle at a family wedding. She was clapping, laughing, and jumping about. She also had no fear of running under the parachute or crawling through tunnels. It was so rewarding and encouraging to see this side of her.

Sophie is usually my little daredevil but she was also quite different at Gymboree. She enjoyed playing with the balls, running around, and hanging by herself. She was a bit of a loner and really didn't participate in the group activities. She chose activities that were easy for her to do and that she was comfortable with. I guess this makes sense because Sophie is very sensitive and has a hard time warming up to other people. She's a momma's girl.

Seeing both of my daughters running around with huge smiles on their faces made my day. As I watched them, I thought back to when they were first born and how scared we all were that they would never do any of these things and that they would be behind their peers. Watching them on Thursday morning, I realized that they were right on track. No one would have guessed everything they'd gone through. I'm not an overly religious person but I will end this post by saying God is good.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

A New Day

So, I have dusted myself off, picked myself up, and decided to get on with my life. My pity party is over! I am going to enjoy the summer with my beautiful girls and look for a job. Based on everything my family went through in 2008, I know that life works out the way it's supposed to and that no amount of crying and carrying on will change that.
And as I said in my last post, my Northern Friends are fabulous. Calls of support have been coming in, e-mails, and posts to Facebook. I think I'll keep these people around awhile.
Hope everyone enjoys the day! I know I'm going to.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Not a Good Day

When I started this blog I had every intention of being positive, light, and funny. Can't do it tonight, folks. Just found out I lost my teaching position at a school that I love. Tears are flowing. I feel like I have been kicked out of my family. The people I work with are not only amazing teachers but are also incredible people. In September, 2008, my water broke (I will discuss more in another post) at 21 weeks and I almost lost Sophie and Lindsay. I had to lay in a hospital bed for 7 weeks and was not allowed out of my room except for tests. During that time, all of the teachers at Northern Lincoln Elementary got together and rallied around me and my family. They brought me care packages, sent me cards, visited daily, made phone calls, etc... They even threw me a fabulous baby shower. These people are family to me and the thought of not seeing them all every day literally breaks my heart. You do not find people often who care so much about you and would do anything for you. I found these people and while I know they'll always be in my life, it will never be the same. I don't know that there is another school that exists that has teachers and people like those at Northern. I am grateful that I was able to experience this kind of "work family" at least once in my life. Maybe that is all I can ask for.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

If You're Tired and You Know It, Clap Your Hands!

I am going to apologize right off the bat if my post doesn't make sense. I have had about 2 hours of sleep! I always assumed that once the girls were out of the waking-up-to-feed-every 4 hours-stage that I was home free! You veteran mommies can laugh. I know, it's funny.
Last night was one for the books. I am a night owl so I didn't go to bed until
11:30. At 12:30, I woke up to Lindsay screaming her head off. She has a cold so I chose not to ignore her and went in to see if she was okay. I attempted to lay her back down, gave her the binky and lovey, and told her to go back to sleep. No go! She kept screaming. So, against my better judgement, I scooped her up and put her in bed with us. Fast forward to 3:00. She is still awake-kicking me, pulling daddy's hair (have to admit I enjoyed that!), and laughing. Back to her crib she went. Again, screaming, crying, carrying on. By this time, Sophie is awake and has definitely pooped. I pick her up, put her on the changing table, and now she is laughing and throwing herself all over the table. This is when I turn into Linda Blair. I swear my head spun around and I began channeling the devil.
"Lay down, Sophie!," I growled.
This was met by even more laughter. Oh, and the best part is that there is poop all over the changing table. You know, the little rabbit pellets? I am literally scooping up poop in my hands!
I finally get her all cleaned up, wash my hands, and head back to bed. It is now after 4am and I make the critical decision to shut the monitor off, close my eyes, and ignore them. They were up by 7 and as of 10:45 they have refused to take a nap. And did I mention? We're going to a birthday party for a 2 year old today. Fun times!

Friday, June 18, 2010

All About Me

Since this is my first post, I thought I would tell you a little bit about me. I am almost 37 years old and gave birth to twin girls in November, 2008. Their names are Sophie and Lindsay. I am currently working as a reading teacher but it looks like I may be jobless due to budget cuts. I'm married to Rick, who owns his own construction business. I will be ranting and raving about the "joys" of motherhood on this post. And believe me, there are many. But there are also a lot of tough days that no one seems to want to talk about. I will, though. I am going to give you the down and dirty of what it's like to be a mom of twins. I must warn you that if you have not had children yet, you may not want to read this. If you already have children, though, I can already see you nodding your head in agreement. This blog will be a glimpse inside the life of a "typical" mom. Hope you enjoy reading and feel free to comment.