Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Merry Christmas!

The holiday season has just begun to wind down for our family. We are currently in NY after a whirlwind of family gatherings during Christmas week. It was a great Christmas for everyone. It all began on Christmas Eve at Mark's grandparents house. The girls were each given sock monkey's that Velcro. Anything they can put around their neck is a huge hit with them.

Like everything we have two of, some one takes them both and runs away. It was Ruthie this time.

I find it ironic that she has two monkeys on her and I have two monkeys on me every day. If her monkeys were 20 lbs each I think she would appreciate all of my hard work. I will leave that guilt trip for her teen years though.

And, of course, despite all of the wonderful gifts she received, she wanted to play with paper. It is always the simple things in life for these guys.

Then came Christmas day! We got the girls 2 large items and then some smaller stocking items. They each seemed to be drawn to a different item, which worked out well.

Ruthie to the slide/playhouse....

and Maddie to the ghetto ball pit. Why ghetto, may you ask?

Because Santa assumed that when Target sends you a ball pit that they would include enough balls to at least cover the floor of the ball pit. Santa was wrong....very wrong. They still enjoyed themselves though.

Then the girls busted out their stockings, which really werent stockings. They were Hello Kitty bags from the $1 rack at Target. Very festive, I know. I was meaning to get matching stockings for our entire family, but due to budget reasons it did not happen. So, Merry Christmas, from Hello Kitty.

The phones and necklaces were a big hit, as were the Hello Kitty bags. Dont knock it until you try it.

Then we went off to Mark's parents house for the rest of the afternoon. The girls got these bounce and spin horses. Big hit!

Unfortunately not as big of a hit as the boxes that other presents came in.

Hope everyone has a great New Year from our family to yours!

Monday, December 22, 2008

101 Little Known Uses of Household Products

When I was little I used to do these visual illusion puzzles. The one I remember the most is the one below. Some people see two faces and some people see a vase. Remember it?

I feel like every day is like this visual illusion with Ruthie and Maddie. I see an object for what it obviously is, and the girls see it for something completely different. Today's mission was the kitchen.

I see a pot (that I now have to wash)....

Maddie sees a hat!

I see a collender (that I now, also, have to wash)....

Maddie is investigating the exciting world of fencing.
I see a mixing bowl (this also got added to the dirty dishes piling up)

Maddie thinks it is a seat. The fact she could fit into this amazed me. But, as we all know, bowls are not for sitting. I actually was able to catch the next shot mid-bowl-tipping-over. She ended up knocking her head and screaming, but I thought it was a funny shot still.

I accidentally left the pantry dor ajar and walked into this...

I'm still finding random canned goods around the house. Lesson learned.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Going to the park in December?

So, there is a back story to these pictures that I feel the need to tell. Sorry.

The first week in November, my friend, Pauline, and her daughter, Rachel (who is 6 months younger than the girls), came with us to Centennial Park here in Nashville. We walked around and we stopped at the pond to feed the ducks. Pauline had so wisely brought bread for the occasion. I had forgotten my camera, but Pauline had hers. I used it to take pictures because the girls were mesmerized by the whole feeding ducks event. I thought it would be a cute blog also. A week passes, still no pictures from Pauline. I call to ask for them, she says she will get them to me as soon as she dumps the photos from the memory card. She also mentioned that she hadnt dumped the pics from another full memory card, so the prospect of getting my pictures anytime soon was not looking too good. So began my weekly harassment of her for my pictures. I used email, voicemail, even facebook. Finally, a month and a half later....I get my pictures.

I kind of have this thing were I dont like to blog about things that happened a while back, just because the girls change so much. They have changed so much, even from pictures only a month ago. I decided just to keep them as a memory of a fun day because there was no way I could pass them off as happening recently. I am wearing a short sleeve shirt in the pics, the girls dont have jackets on...anyone would be able to tell these were not taken in December. Who brings their kids to the park in freezing December?

Fast forward to today. In some whacky messed up meteorological world, it was 73 degrees here. A week before Christmas, and it is 73 degrees in Nashville. At the same time I talk to my family in NY who is getting snowed in with 8-10 inches of snow. So strange. So, here it is, December and in the 70's. So, I call Pauline and we head to the park again. The whole irony of this situation was that I didnt want to blog about the pictures with the ducks because I thought the moment had passed for park pictures, since it is December. Since we went back to the park today (me in a short sleeve shirt...except I put jackets on the girls because it was windy), I feel as if it is appropriate now. So, behold. The duck pictures.

I began to throw bread to get the ducks to come....

and boy did they come!
Then came pigeons. I mean flocks of pigeons. Like, Alfred Hitchcock kinds of flocks. I will admit to diving behind the stroller in an act of self-preservation several times. I guess I just assumed the girls could defend themselves.

Seriously though, look how close they came to my kids. If they werent strapped in, Maddie would have gone after one.

I love this picture of Ruthie because whenever I stopped throwing bread, she would grab my arm to try to get me to throw more to make the ducks come. So cute!

Next year will be fun when they can feed the ducks themselves. I will make sure to bring my own camera and post the event promptly. Just think, if not for 73 degree day in Nashville today, you may have missed out on these lovely duck pictures....and how sad that would have been!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Milestone Moment!

As a first time parent, those milestone moments have been so amazing to experience. The first time they roll over, crawl, walk, talk, etc. Well, today another amazing milestone has been reached!

I CAN PUT THEIR HAIR IN PIGTAILS!!!! How stinkin' cute are pigtails? Surprisingly enough, there isnt a spot in their babybook for this moment. As a side note, there are no spaces for open heart surgeries or eye surgeries either. Not a huge market apparently. Ridiculous.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Good Old Vanderbilt!

Well, we ventured back to the wonderful world of Vanderbilt Children's Hospital again today. The goal today was Ruthie's second eye surgery. Unlike her last eye surgery, they only did her right eye today. The goal is to tighten her eye muscle so that it pulls her alignment in so she can line up the objects she sees out of her eyes. It basically affects her 3-D vision. Well, I didnt want to feel like I show preference to heart surgery over eye surgery, so here is a post dedicated to Ruthie's eye surgery today.

Ruthie getting her vitals in her spiffy little scrubs

The obsession over the ankle band begins....and continues until they knocked her out

Ruthie was not able to eat or drink anything when she woke up. We got her up at 8:15 and her surgery was at 11:15. If you know Ruthie, you know how she likes her food. Needless to say she doesnt do well without food, or her sippy. It was a struggle. We had to constantly distract her with whatever we could find.

This included pants on her head, blood pressure cuffs to play with...

Push her in a car with the blood pressure cuff. Anything to distract her from food.

Then the doctor comes back and puts a mark over the area they are operating on. This is to ensure her right eye gets operated on and they dont accidentally take out her appendix or amputate her left leg. This technique was a great success, since her right eye was operated on and nothing else.

Ruthie came out of anesthesia wonderfully this time! She just slept it off and woke up well. She basically slept the entire day. She did manage to wake up long enough to puke all over her car seat. Lovely.

This is what her eye looked like tonight. It is a little red and puffy, but it will be better even tomorrow. It hasnt seemed to bother her at all. She doesnt touch it very often, and only gives me a problem when I try to put her ointment in her eyes. That takes both Mark and I to achieve that goal 3 times a day.

Thanks for all the prayers and calls today! We appreciated it!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Me and My Shadow

My mom came to visit for a couple of days last week while Mark went out of town to a friends wedding. It was great to have her here to visit and to help out. She had not seen the girls since October, so they had changed a lot.

Apparently distance does make the heart grow fonder, because Maddie became obsessed with my mother from the minute she walked in the door. She insisted that my mom hold her ALL of the time. Anytime my mom left the room, Maddie followed her, crying. Heaven forbid that Ruthie even go near my mom! That was promptly followed by screaming and crying. It was so strange.

This is my mother attempting to eat breakfast, and Maddie insisting on sitting in her lap the entire time (notice the little stink eye she is giving me).

Like a good grandmother, Grmaam came bearing gifts for the girls. A little stuffed animal for each of them. Maddie claimed them both as her own and wouldnt let Ruthie have either one of them. Apparently we need to spend a little more time on "What Would Jesus Do?" lessons with her.

On another note. We head back to good 'ole Vanderbilt tomorrow for another eye surgery for Ruthie. Please keep the procedure in your prayers. It is outpatient, so we will be home by late afternoon.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Hot Twin on Twin Action!

No, my blog has not been taken over by spammers. But I want you to look deep into your hearts as to why you kept reading after the title....

The girls are all into kissing now. They prefer to kiss each other. When we were at the mall the other day, in their side by side stroller, they kept kissing each other. It was a crowd pleaser as we pushed them around. I will say that Ruthie REALLY likes the kissing. Maddie gets a little worn out of the whole game, and Ruthie keeps trying to kiss her. Ruthie went in for like 5 more kisses after I stopped the camera. They havent quite figured out how to kiss without the tongue action. We'll work on that. Look how proud of themselves they are after they kiss though!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

1 year photos....at 14 months

Are you noticing a trend with my kids monthly pictures? Let's see. Their 3 month at 2.5 months, their 6 month at 5 months, their 9 month pictures at 10 months and now their 1 year photos at 14 months. At this rate they will get their Senior pictures taken when they are declaring their major in college.

Here are the 3 shots I picked. They crop them before they print them, so my hard copies look a little nicer, but you'll get the point.

They are too cute....I know. The sitting actually was fairly uneventful, and they were fairly cooperative. They were not too big on getting too close to each other, so this was the best we could do for the shot of the both of them. They attempted a cool above shot with them cheek to cheek. Check out the progression....and Ruthie's face.

This was our cue that the photo session was over...

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

It's a Christmas Miracle!

If you thought the virgin birth was impressive, then you will be REALLY impressed with this!

That would be an unguarded Christmas tree and my 2 children playing with their toys and not touching the tree!!!! Yes, Virginia....there is a Santa Claus!

* As I was typing this Maddie came within inches of running her little car into the tree. Almost had to amend the posting. Safe for now.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Think.....Where was the last place I put that?

That is quite possibly the most impossible statement at this point in our house. It seems that everything is being "misplaced" in our house recently. It really doesnt matter where was the last place I put something. I have to think where was the last place I saw the girls snooping around. Our most recent find was the remote control. That was missing for 2 days. You may think that we should just not be lazy, but this was the remote that switched the TV from DVD to TV mode. That means that until we found the remote, we had 2 straight days of Wiggles on the TV in the living room. I checked everywhere (I'll get to that later) and couldnt find it. Then I remembered seeing something.

Lo and behold! The remote was in the drawer with the cling wrap and aluminum foil. And it only took 2 days.

Then there were the 2 hours that I could not find their 2 sippy cups. I looked everywhere (to be explained in a moment), and no where to be found. Only when I went to go throw out an empty 12 pack container, did I find them....inside the 12 pack container. Currently I am missing a sippy cup. We are on hour 7 of it being MIA. I would like to find it before the stench leads me to its location. Or, even worse, as my sister has pointed out....if the girls find it and try to drink it.

So, "Where is looking everywhere?" you may ask. I actually have a process for this. Every night I clean up the disaster of hurricane Ruthie & Maddie. This includes finding the following:

  • 5 shapes for the cookie jar

  • 5 balls for the ball popper

  • 10 pieces of Farmer Tad Magnets

  • 10 pieces to number puzzle

  • 10 pieces to animal puzzle

The first step is to put everything up that is on the surrounding floor area, that one is obvious. Then I move on to the following:

  • under the couches

  • under their pink chairs

  • in the toy box

  • in the play hut (more mischief happens here besides eye patch pulling)

  • in all empty 12 pack containers laying around the house (It's a cheap toy...dont judge)

  • in all boxes in the dinning room (we have a small collection for some reason)

  • any bags that Maddie is carrying that day

    • any drawers or cabinets they have been playing in all day

    So far I have been able to locate all pieces except for 2 magnets of Farmer Tad. They are lost in some abyss with the sippy cup apparently. This list gets updated, almost daily. Once I locate the sippy cup and the missing farmer tad magnets, I will add that to my list of places to check daily.

    I always was a fan of scavenger hunts.

  • Saturday, December 6, 2008

    You May Need To Look Twice

    Every night, after the girls have their bath, we brush their hair. Ruthie has picked up on this pattern, and has become obsessed with brushing hair. It can be her hair or any one elses hair. Normally, we will brush her hair, then she will take the brush and brush my hair. She then walks over to Mark and brushes his hair. Then she attempts to chase Maddie to brush her hair. That usually ends in Maddie screaming at her. Then Ruthie sits and brushes her own hair, until the process begins again. I was attempting to get this whole thing on video, but this was all I could get.

    Now, in case you havent noticed, I have 2 kids. What this means is if you are doing something with one of them, or focusing on only one of them, then you basically have no idea what is going on with the other one. That was the situation here.

    If you re-watch the video, pay attention to Maddie in the back. The girls are not allowed to have their pacifiers outside of their beds. In the process of us trying to get Ruthie to do her hair brushing thing, Maddie was reaching into Ruthie's bed and getting Ruthie's pacifier. She then flaunted it around the room (you can see her smiling as she is walking behind me and even giggle a little), and then intentionally sits right next to me to show me that she has it. What you dont see on video is the complete melt down that Ruthie has as soon as she sees that Maddie has a pacifier.

    Always something going on behind the scenes. The story of my life.