Saturday, February 27, 2010

Happy Burpday!

Yesterday the girls turned two months old, and we celebrated by doing what any good parents do — we tortured them.

We started the day with a rushed feeding, packed them into car seats (which they love. No really. They do. Honest. They only scream like that when they really love something), hurried to the doctor's, stripped them nearly naked, weighed them, measured them, and then jammed three needles into their legs. Happy Birthday!!

In the last month we have:
* Gained a combined 4 pounds, 15 ounces
* Learned how to blow bubbles (and subsequently drool like a St. Bernard)
* Figured out the difference between night and day
* Took the babies to the store and avoided waking The Screamer
* Moved out of preemie clothes and into newborns...yay!!
* Reveled in the magic of the vibrating bouncy chair
* Turned in Grace's car bed for a big girl car seat (and by big girl, I mean a whopping 5 lbs.)
* Found out why getting burps is so important
* Started holding our heads up a little higher — literally

So, girls, I hope you had as much fun as we did. Except for, ya know, that whole needle part.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

You have chosen wisely

So, last night we were presented with the same dilemma as a few weeks ago: K-State basketball or LOST.

A few weeks ago, I was a tad selfish and chose LOST, for which I was cruelly punished.

Last night, being the fair and balanced person I am, I chose K-State basketball.

The karma gods must have approved because not only did I not have to hose down, but my babies slept like, well, babies all night.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Baby Blues

The other day, a little girl about eight or nine walked up to where the girls were snuggled in their car seats. She peered in and after taking a good look at them, said "I like the girl."


But I took no offense to this comment. I personally think all babies look pretty gender neutral. But then it hit me why she would think one was a boy. She was wearing blue. That's right. I dressed my baby girl in blue. *GASP*

And it wasn't a powder blue dress with lace on it either. *DOUBLE GASP*

So, I said to the little girl, "They're both girls." I could see her mind beginning to blow. Girl — blue. Blue — girl. Does. Not. Com. Pute.

Then I said, "Well, you're a girl and you're wearing blue." Mind = blown.

And why shouldn't she? Who decided that blue is a boy's color? Or that pink is a girl's color?

And while we're on the subject, I will also gladly support my daughters if they want to play with dump trucks and hot wheels. Or if they want baby dolls.

It doesn't matter to me what colors they wear or what toys they play with, as long as it is their choice. Not some predetermined social norm they are expected to follow.

So until they are able to make those choices on their own, you will see my baby girls wearing blue and pink. And green. And yellow. And brown. And red. And orange. And purple. (Editor's note: especially purple. — Scott)

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Katie's Third Law of Parenthood

I know it's here somewhere.

Check Grace.


What?!? I'm telling's here.

I can smell it.

No, I just took it out yesterday.

Is it you?

Look in their bed.

But I can SMELL it!

I guess it must be IN me. My hair. My skin. My clothes. My soul.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Duh, Mom

This picture scares the bejesus out of me. To understand why, fast forward about 12 years...

Me: "No, Claire, you can't go to the mall alone with your friends."

Claire: "Ugh! Like, why not??"

Me: "Because you are too young. I'd be happy to go with you though."

Claire: *Eye roll*

And there it is. Followed by the foot stomp, the high pitched whine and the slammed door. Except I have it times two. Let's take a moment to let that sink in. Not one, but TWO adolescent girls with attitudes from here to Alabama and back.

In this future scenario, I close my eyes, sigh, and wonder what happened to those sweet little girls who were in awe of their mother.

I like to think that Scott and I will make good parents. We're a good balance of laid back and boundaries. But I know it will come. There isn't a girl on this planet that didn't have moments when she thought her parents were idiots. And we have it times two.

How do you prepare for those moments? How do you brace yourself for the rejection that will inevitably happen?

I don't know the answer to that yet, but I do know this. Every time Grace is fussy at 2 a.m., I will not dread getting up. Every time Claire wants to lay in my arms and sway back and forth, I will not dread standing. Every time Grace takes an hour to eat, I will not dread being late. Every time Claire cries for her Mama, I will not dread shutting the computer and putting off this blog.

I will take these moments and store them away for a time later in life when I will need to rewind and remember how sweet these little girls are. A time when an eye roll and a foot stomp might make me forget.

And 12 years from now, as I'm standing with my eyes closed, I will be playing back these moments — these beautiful, heartwarming moments — when my little girls thought their Mom was, like, the best thing ever.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Girl Smiley

It was gas.

She was sleepy.

Her tummy must be full.

She's exercising her face muscles.

It was an accident.

Everyone seems to know the reason for our babies' smiles. They may be true — they may not. But, in all reality, does it matter?

Crying is a way of communicating our most basic needs. (Just ask my older sis, she did her PhD on it!) Babies cry when they're hungry, have a dirty diaper or just want to be held. Toddlers throw temper tantrums. Elementary school kids cry when they get bumps and bruises. Teenagers cry when their friends leave them out. High schoolers cry when their boyfriends break their hearts, and college kids cry when they leave their childhood behind.

Sadness, pain and heartache are ever-present with kiddos. It's something beyond our control. Just a part of life. And it's something that every parent would give their left arm to avoid.

So when your child (even your six-week old baby) smiles — shows that moment of happiness — it doesn't matter if it's gas or true joy. You're just so happy to see that tell-tale sign of happiness.

And as a parent, is there anything better than that?

(For those keeping score at home, that's Claire grinning up there.)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

A Pleasant Surprise

(To those faint of heart: you're about to read about poop. BABY POOP.)

Every day that goes by these girls keep showing us exactly how different they are.

Claire, lovingly referred to as McPoops Alot, lives up to her nickname quite well. Grace, on the other hand, really seems to struggle with the whole process.

Our doctor said it's quite normal for babies to poop as much as multiple times a day or as little as every 48 hours. For the most part, Grace has chosen the latter.

This past week, things started to get a little worrisome. It had been about 4 days since she last left us a "surprise" and she was being extra fussy. (Which for Grace, finding the time for the extra means she was now crying while hungry, eating, full, tired, rested, awake, asleep, I could go on and on). So, being the new parents we are, and not really having a clue what we're doing, we called the doctor.

He had us come in and did some pushing around to make sure there weren't any traffic jams, and sent us on our way with the diagnosis that all babies are different.

So, we waited. And waited. We're now up to 6 days since she last pooped. At each changing, we rock, paper, scissors to decide who will change her. Because by this time, we're expecting a shock and awe campaign of poop the likes of which the world has yet to see.

Another 24 hours go by. Still nothing.

Now it's Wednesday afternoon and Grandma is coming over to play. The girls are a little sleepy, but you can tell they are glad to see her. In fact, Grace was so excited, she even left her a surprise.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Babies' Day Out

We took our first trip to the store with the girls yesterday. It was our first outing to somewhere other than the doctor. Here's a quick rundown of the experience:

12:30 Feed babies.
12:45 Feed adults.
1:00 Strap babies into car seats (despite their very vocal objections).
1:05 Start my car.
1:10 Turn off my car. The stroller won't fit. The trunk may or may not have been full of too much junk.
1:15 Start Scott's car.
1:20 Attempt to install bases in his car.
1:23 Scott swears in frustration.
1:26 Scott slams base down.
1:30 Scott's head explodes.
1:40 Bases finally locked in.
1:45 Load babies in car and head out.
2:00 Arrive at grocery store.
2:05 Hit by ton of bricks (Did we seriously just bring the screamer into public? THE SCREAMER. Ya know, where other people can hear her and wonder to themselves what these parents are doing to this poor little girl??)
2:10 Spend the next 25 minutes praying she stays asleep just a little longer.
2:45 Phew. Made it. No screaming.
2:50 Head home.
3:05 Arrive home, unload babies and drop to the floor.

Taking two babies out to buy 11 things at the grocery store is a lot more work than you would think. Note to self: Let's not do that again.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Projectile karma

Last night, Scott and I were faced with a difficult decision -- a decision that pitted us against each other like few things do. After a terribly long day of him doing his thing (working) and me doing my thing (babies), we wanted to spend the evening together. But that left us to make the crucial decision: K-State vs. Nebraska or the season premiere of LOST. (Side note: When referring to the TV show LOST, it is always LOST, never Lost)

We were DVRing both, but only had time to watch one before we passed out from exhaustion. Needless to say, after months of me watching K-State games, I won and we settled on LOST. I did feel a little guilty, knowing that by morning, the score of the game would be all over everything. But I waited an entire year for this. (Well, 3/4 of a year, really) And didn't I deserve it? With all of the college basketball hours I've been racking up, I was owed this.

But just as we were finishing the first of THREE hours of the LOST marathon, we heard the noise that makes my whole body hurt -- a waking baby. Don't get me wrong, I love our baby girls to the moon and back, but hearing those waking sounds reminds me that I've only been sleeping in spirit-crushing 3-hour intervals for the past month.

Much as our life has become -- we tabled our plans for the moment and started feeding babies. As we were finishing up, we turned on LOST and began to oooh and awe at all of the twists and turns of the island. (By the way, how many groups of "others" will we encounter before the end of the series??)

But just before we could determine what in J.J. Abrams' world was going on, it happened. So quick I couldn't dodge it in time. My hair. My face. My neck. My Sweater. The Bed. Oh, and Claire. Covered in projectile vomit.

And there it was. The thought that maybe, just maybe, if I relented and watched the game, I would have paid more attention to burping. And wouldn't smell like curdled milk.