Friday, May 28, 2010

The Boys and the Dog Door

Man, this sure is fun.
We love playing outside!!
Okay, I'm bored.Let's play with the fire pit!!Man, my brother is crazy. I want to hang out with you, mom.Oooh, the dog door!!!
This is fun to play with!I'll help you out, bro!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Carseats

L&N are approaching the one year mark and I cannot tell you how many people have said to me, "you are almost at the point where you can turn your car seats around!"

You mean, they'll actually be able to watch Baby Einstein DVDs on our truck's DVD player when we take long road trips?! Sweet!

I admit that I'm looking forward to that day too and I've always heard that 'once your baby is 20lbs and one year old, you can turn the seat around.' I did some research on the subject before I ask the pediatrician about it at their one year checkup and the stats scared the hell out of me. My little men will be facing the back of the truck until they're 10. Just kidding about that part. They'll be 9 1/2, tops.

This video isn't in English, but it very clearly demonstrates how a rear-facing vs. front-facing carseat protects your baby in the event of a crash.

Pretty scary. The car seat we have allows the boys to be rear-facing until they reach 35lbs which is a reassurance to me because I plan on keeping them that way for a while!

Stats from Car-Safety.Org

  • Rear-facing is safest for both adults and children, but especially for babies, who would face a greater risk of spinal cord injury in a front-facing carseat during a frontal crash.
  • Rear-facing car seats spread frontal crash forces over the whole area of a child's back, head and neck; they also prevent the head from snapping relative to the body in a frontal crash.
  • Rear-facing carseats may not be quite as effective in a rear end crash, but severe frontal and frontal offset crashes are far more frequent and far more severe than severe rear end crashes.
  • Rear-facing carseats are NOT a safety risk just because a child's legs are bent at the knees or because they can touch/kick the vehicle seat.
  • Rear-facing as long as possible is the recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatricians, and can reduce injuries and deaths. Motor Vehicle Crashes are the #1 overall cause of death for children 14 and under.

It looks like our truck's DVD player won't be getting a work out any time soon.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Mom's Night Out

I love being a mommy, but there are just some times where I like going out with the girls for dinner, drinks and dancing!

It's funny how having the title, "mom" changes you. Don't get me wrong, I like to party, but now I do it in a way that doesn't leave me completely useless the following day, if you know what I mean. I have the little guys to look out for, so instead of doing tequila shots, I try to keep the drinks at a manageable level. Maybe just one shot...

I only post this picture because I like looking at my wedges.
We found ourselves a spot called the Continental Midtown which I've been to many times before...pre-babies. They have the most amazing martini, the Buzz Aldrin.
Seriously, it's the most delicious drink evah.

4 parts Tang
2 parts Peach Vodka
1 part Triple Sec

Combine ingredients in a shaker and shake over ice.
Strain into a Tang rimmed cocktail glass and enjoy!

I love this girl!
(this will be Luke's mother-in-law one day. he's taken a liking to her daughter, Gabriella, who's 4 months older than him. i really think it's the pigtails that he likes!)
...and our night wouldn't be complete without a picture of me making a ridiculous face
(how cute is Allie behind me?!)

It was a very late night and early morning (because I can't seem to sleep past 8:30 a.m. - it's like a mother's disease!!) but it was awesome and I can not wait to do it again!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

11 Months Old


Boys, first let me say that this has been the most fun month with you so far. I know that there has been a short-lived cold and teething pain, but you still manage to party like little rock stars! Watching you grow, learn and accomplish new things every day is nothing short of amazing for me.

Both of you are so very different from eachother, but I can see the comfort you bring to eachother. If someone wakes up and his brother isn't in the nursery with him - he cries out for him.

You both shake your heads when someone says "no, no, no."

You like to play together and will follow eachother everywhere, but if one of you is tired -- all bets are off and there is sure to be tears.

Puffs are your favorite snack.

You both love soft blankets & pillows. If a soft blanket is on the floor, you will flop down and rub your face on it.

I finally removed the mobile from your cribs because every day I go into your nursery, the monkeys that dangle from the mobile are thrown on the floor.

Outlets, cords, remote controls, laptops, cell phones -- just naming things that get you love to play with (but we try very hard to get you not to!).

Luke

You have a tooth!

You're still an expert cruiser & will only take steps when you want to.

You're obsessed with toilet paper. No roll is safe when you're near!

Eye glasses are another one of your favorite things to grab.

You sit on the hardwood floor and use your feet to spin yourself around in circles - it's fun to watch!


You LOVE the refrigerator and will crawl (very quickly) over to it when you hear the door open.

Nolan

You walk on your own now -- no more prompting from mom & dad.

You're extremely ticklish.

You wave 'hello' and 'goodbye'

For the past couple of weeks, you've been scrunching your nose & squinting your eyes when you give a smile - it's adorable!

When you're tired, you pull on your ear and rub your eyes.

Thank you again for being such wonderful little boys. Thank you for your sloppy kisses and hugs. I even thank you for the hair-pulling and the crying. You're both loved so much by so many people. You're both fighting right now, so I'm going to intervene. I love you!!

Friday, May 21, 2010

I Don't Know How Parents Co-Sleep With Toddlers

I have had a good reason for my lack of posting for the past few days: the boys are sick and Justin was away for work so there just hasn't been the time. On Wednesday morning everything was great, L&N played, chased one another and stole toys from each other - very typical day.

After their afternoon nap, when I pulled Nolan out of his crib, I noticed that he was burning up. I took his temp and, sure enough, he had his highest fever yet - 103.9. The pedi said to give him medicine and bring him into the office in the morning if he still had a temp.

When my kids are sick, like most kids, they want to be held constantly. This is a little difficult when Luke wants to play and smack Nolan in the head (which is one of their fun new activities) and I'm by myself. Luckily Mom Mom & Poppy came over which distracted Luke and allowed me to go buy more baby medicine!
Nolan slept pretty well that night, but Luke was up, I swear, 10 times for paci replacements.
Thursday morning, Nolan had no temp and was feeling better, but I still took him to the pedi who said he has a bad sore throat and to just continue alternating m0trin and ty1en0l.
Since it was such a gorgeous day, the boys and I went into the yard to play for a little while.




Do you see my sweet Luke's sad face? Right after play time, they went down for naps. When Luke woke up from his nap, he now had a fever. My poor guys!! I guess he has a sore throat too, so I started him on the meds and held him in my lap where he was very content.

This brings me to the co-sleeping thing. Luke had a miserable night and he just couldn't get comfortable enough to sleep. His fever didn't come down until around 3 a.m. which is when Justin and I decided that we need to try and get some sleep so what do we do??

Let's let Luke sleep in bed with us where he's happiest and maybe we'll all get some rest. Luke got rest. Justin & I....not so much.

We have a king sized bed so surely this would be enough room for a 120 pound mommy, her 20 pound son and his 6'3" daddy. Well, it wasn't!! Luke wanted to be right half on / half off mommy while intermittently kicking his legs and smacking her in the face because he was feeling better.

When parents co-sleep with their babies, is everyone just used to it, so they sleep peacefully? I cannot sleep soundly when a baby is in bed with me. I'm afraid of moving. I got a pain in my shoulder from propping Luke up after he fell asleep.

We're all up now. I've consumed two cups of coffee while the boys are playing. They're fevers are gone and they seem to be in good moods. Hopefully their sore throats go away by tomorrow because I have a fun GIRLS weekend planned with some girlfriends!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Birthday Invitation

I mailed out L&N's birthday invitations yesterday! I've had the invite picked out for a while but I was waiting to order it because I wanted to get a good picture of both of the boys together. Unfortunately, as we all know, it's so hard to get one child to look & smile for the camera let alone TWO!

I obviously wasn't able to get a picture of both of them, so I used individual pictures and I love how it turned out.


The birthday is right around the corner...

Monday, May 17, 2010

Whirlwind Weekend - Teeth & Walking

The past four days have been a whirlwind. Justin had to go to Houston for work this weekend so he kissed us all goodbye and left early Friday morning. This gave me lots of quality alone-time with my mini men.
Friday

Grammy and Aunt Danielle came over for an afternoon visit and Luke took his first steps! It was so exciting, but he hasn't really done it again since then. He can stand alone very well, but he is afraid of falling, so he holds out his hands for me before he'll take another step. The same thing happened with Nolan, so it'll probably be another couple of weeks before he gets more daring & just starts going.


Nolan really gained his confidence on Friday. As soon as Justin left, Nolan just let go of the couch and began walking across the living room. He hasn't stopped since - except when he wants to get somewhere really fast - then he crawls! If Luke has a toy that he wants, Nolan will crawl over and attack his brother for it.


On Friday night, Grammy met the boys and I for dinner at a diner. We figured that diners are noisy places, so we didn't need to worry about the boys being a little loud. I don't know about moms of singletons, but whenever we go somewhere to eat, the boys draw a crowd. At one point, there were 4 waitresses standing around our table asking questions and showing me cell phone pictures of their little ones. After they left, then the people sitting at surrounding tables began with their questions and love for the boys. Luke and Nolan eat it up!! They were all smiles. I love talking to new people so I don't really mind the questions unless they get a little too personal or rude (like at the mall last week when a woman walked over to the stroller, stared at the boys and announced loudly, "they aren't identical." No kidding lady, don't you think I know that? She then stared some more and walked away. Weirdo.).

Luke at the diner
taken with cell phone camera
The boys and I went home, played a little and went to bed. I think that this may have been when the second tooth started breaking through for Luke because he was up quite a few times that night. Nothing that a little cuddling from mom couldn't fix.

Saturday

Helping Mommy make breakfast (Since daddy wasn't around, I took lots of cell phone pics so I could forward them!)The boys and I went to a friend's graduation party. There were loads of children there for them to play with which was a good thing because they all kept themselves entertained. Nolan took a liking to 4 year old, Eva. He stared up at her and followed her all over the living room. Luke found a mirror that enjoyed talking to!

The boys slept wonderfully on Saturday which was good because I was trying to catch up from the night before.

Sunday
Aunt Chica and Uncle Eric came over for some quality boy time. Nolan showed off his walking skills and Luke showed off his second tooth! Aunt Chica was feeding Luke some breakfast when she noticed #2 coming in. It took a little a little wrangling, but we got a cell phone pic.
We took the boys over to Mom Mom & Poppy's house so that I could go to David's Bridal to order my bridesmaid dress for Uncle Pat & Aunt Giustina's wedding. Luke & Nolan got some loving and I got a purdy dress! Chica & I had a little lunch, picked up the boys and went to Grammy's house for dinner.
I am loving this stage with Luke and Nolan. They are so entertaining - I could watch them play like this forever!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Caught on Video - Nolan Walking

And the First Tooth Goes to.....

I am happy to say that the Mothers Day Scream-Fest served a good purpose. Last night when I was feeding Luke, I noticed...

a tooth!!!
One of my little toofless babies has sprouted his first chomper at 10 months & 3 weeks. Luke was drinking from my glass this afternoon and I could hear the little tooth scraping as he took some sips. So cute!
I am glad Sunday's crying & sleeplessness had a purpose!

Walking

Nolan has been doing more and more walking. He loves to take my hand and walk around the house, but he's been feeling very independant and has been taking more steps on his own.

A couple of weeks ago, he took his first steps. I have been trying for two weeks to catch it on video. Two weeks! The whole problem is, when he has an audience, he becomes shy.

Last night, he was standing at the kitchen table, turned around and walked about 8 steps over to the closet. Why couldn't I have my camera ready then?!

This is the best video we have of him walking. I need to keep the Flip Cam ready at all times!
video

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Lessons Learned

While I was cleaning up the entire pitcher of freshly-made lemonade that fell out of my refrigerator and onto my kitchen floor the other day, I noticed that the boys weren't making any noise. Alarm bells went off in my head because this typically means they're getting into trouble.


I walked into the living room and noticed that they found my purse and had removed every item(including the contents of my wallet) from it and were playing with it happily. Nevermind the dirty $10 bill that Nolan was waving around in his hand, Luke had his hands on my Coach sunglasses! I packed everything back up and put my purse in a spot they couldn't grab it from. I learned my lesson: I can't leave my purse hidden behind the table any more - they're going to find it.


I find myself learning a lot of lessons lately.


For instance, I can no longer keep the bathroom door open when the boys are roaming around upstairs. I realized this when I discovered Luke sitting on the floor with half a roll of toilet paper unraveled around him. Nolan also tries to climb into the bath tub and I'm afraid he'll fall and bump his head! Lesson learned: just keep bathroom door closed.


Other lessons learned:

Post-pregnancy hair re-growth is awesome & appreciated, but it's still annoying & silly looking.

eBay is great for ridding yourself of the pre-pregnancy jeans that you no longer fit in.

Leaving the remote control on the couch isn't the best idea (as I learned when Nolan almost ordered 'Avatar' from OnDemand).

I have to distract the boys with something when I need to run to the bathroom. Otherwise, they scream for me until I come out.

Never keep a laundry basket on the floor in the path of the doorway at night. When a baby is crying & you are trying to get to the nursery while it's dark, it becomes a tripping hazard. Lesson learned.

Folding laundry while the boys are awake is virtually impossible.

Always keep baby puffs in the diaper bag. They're useful for when you're eating McDonald french fries at the food court and the boys want them too (naturally, because you're eating them), but you don't want them to have any because they're bad for them. They're bad for me too and I really need to stop eating junk food! Baby Steps...I'm in the process of creating my 101 in 1001 list & this may have to be added!

Tank likes to eat the balls out of the ball pit. I haven't figured out a way to get him to stop, but I'm working on it.

There are more lessons learned, but I think I'll save them for another day.

Monday, May 10, 2010

My 1st Mothers Day - not what I expected!

Mother's Day wasn't exactly what I had in mind. I was looking forward to a quiet and relaxing day with my family. What I got was two babies who were up several times at night then were quite miserable throughout the day. When I say "miserable," I mean screaming from their cribs.

It wasn't their usual "hey mom, I'm awake and can't find my paci" whine, but they were full-on screams of anger. "Get in here NOW, mom!" I can only chalk it up to teething. I think I said this in a post back in like September but no teeth poked through their gums. Now, 7 months later, I'm going through the whole "are they teething?" phase again. Lots of crying & drool, but no teeth.

We all fell back to sleep & got some more rest until I woke at 8 & noticed that the boys were still sleeping. Sweet! Now I can sneak downstairs and start making my butter cake and hash brown casserole for brunch with the moms. A short while later, the boys woke and it was peaceful and happy as I opened my Mothers Day gift and card.

Grammy & Mom Mom came over for breakfast and we had a great time! L&N were happy and soaked up all of the love & attention they could receive.
Grammy, Luke, me, Mom Mom & Nolan.
We're missing Grandmom from Ohio, but they boys sent their love!
After everyone left, the little guys went down for naps and woke up in the early afternoon in a funk. Justin and I exhausted ourselves trying to get the boys to cheer up and forget about their tooth pain (if that was even what it was?).
It wasn't the day I had envisioned, but it was still pretty great! I had my family with me. The one thing about the boys being miserable is that they were extra clingy, so I got a lot of snuggle time in. That's a bonus! I got a Flip Cam for Mothers Day and I wish I would have gotten some of the shenanigans on film, but I didn't!
I hope everyone had a fun Mothers Day!

Friday, May 7, 2010

8 x 8 Picture Tag

Lisa tagged me in a game of Photo Tag. Here are the rules:

1) Go to your photo files, select the 8th photo folder

2) Select the 8th photo in that folder

3) Post that photo along with the story behind it

4) Then challenge 8 blogging friends to do the same!

Here is my picture:

This picture was taken May 24, 2003 at Justin's annual Bowling Banquet (because we are just cool like that). Justin would bowl with his dad and best friend every Thursday night for about 8 months throughout the year. I actually forget the name of the guy behind Justin, but he was quite a character!

Just for the fun of it, here is a picture of the same guy dancing with me. I will have to ask my father-in-law how this guy is doing (and what his name is??).

Thank You, Mom

Mother's Day is this Sunday and I am really looking forward to celebrating the day as as a first-time mom! This doesn't mean, however, that I have forgotten about my own mother this year. And what a year it has been...
I didn't know it was possible for me to love her even more than I did 12 short months ago, but I do. It's almost as if I'm looking at her through entirely different eyes. I have newfound respect for the way she raised and took care of Jonathan, Danielle & myself. I don't think she realizes just how amazing she is.

My mom is not the warmest and most compassionate woman in the entire world (we joke about it often!), but despite that, she is very comforting to me. Just being in her presence brings a calmness over me --it's indescribable. Last summer, after the boys were born and Justin was back to work, I was at home all day with the boys. I loved my role as a new mommy, but after a while, my hormones got the best of me and I would feel overwhelmed. My mom helped me tremendously during this time. She helped with the boys and she helped me emotionally. I could never repay her for the compassion she showed me during that time.
Thank you momma for it all. Thanks for helping me while I was on bed rest, thank you for holding my hand during the contractions, thank you for coming to our house & cooking or cleaning when I was healing, thank you for sleeping over on the nights Justin was away, thank you for making me realize that it's okay to take two boys out of the house at once & not to be afraid, thank you for the support and love you've given to Justin & I and thank you for being an amazing grandmom.

You're one of the strongest women I know. You never let me down. You never let Luke & Nolan down. You are the biggest inspiration to me and I hope that when my boys are my age, they will look at me with love and thankfulness the way that I look at you.

You're the best. THANKS!!! I love youAn oldie, but a goodie ;-)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Wedding in Ocean City

Justin and I spent a beautiful and fun weekend down at the Jersey Shore for our friends' Rick & Brenda's wedding. The boys got to spend Saturday & Sunday with Grammy, Grandpop and Aunt Danielle while we got the chance for some quality alone-time.

We arrived in Ocean City 2 hours before the wedding so we went straight to the beach. Yes, Justin was wearing a suit and I was in a dress but we didn't care; we wanted to feel the sand between our toes! After our beach trip, we headed over to church to see two of our closest friends tie the knot.

Brenda looking gorgeous after the ceremony

After the ceremony we drove to the Renault Winery, which is where we stayed and where the reception took place. I missed the babies, but it was so nice to be able to actually take the time to get ready for a night out with my husband. Usually I take a quick shower & try to put on makeup while the boys are pulling toilet paper off the roll around my feet in the bathroom!

Primped for some fun at the reception!!
Rick and Brenda started dating right around the time Justin and I started "going steady" (I love that term!), so we have all been together for a while -- 12 years to be exact!
So sweet!
After the reception, Justin and I (still wearing our wedding attire) hopped in the car for a quick drive to the Borgata in Atlantic City where we played some roulette. I love spending time with him! Going on a date with your husband is definitely something that needs to be done from time to time!
While we were away, Grammy sent a few pictures of the boys having fun! I love getting these text messages from her