Thursday, December 31, 2009

Goodbye 2009...

I'm sitting at my in-laws house relaxing this New Year's Eve. It took Steve and I until this afternoon to even realize that it WAS New Year's Eve. That's pretty much par for the course for 2009. We started the year anticipating the arrival of our twin babies. In fact, on New Year's Eve 2008 we were in triage at Labor & Delivery because I was having contractions 7 minutes apart. And here we are, a year later, with three beautiful children sleeping peacefully in bed.

To be honest with you, 2009 was a pretty difficult year and I'm not too sad that it's over. Although we were blessed with two amazing sweet babies, that transition was really difficult. We had a multitude of illness in our family: my mom, Steve's mom, my sister, Steve's sister, our nephew, my uncle. We lost my grandfather. We had NO sleep and are still tired. It was the first year I was not able to make it up to Canada to be with my family AND I missed our family cruise to the Caribbean. Needless to say, it was a tough year.

BUT... I can't help but look back at 2009 and think about the blessings of the year. We've watched Molly change from a shy toddler to a confident preschooler. We've added two sweet babies to our family and watched them roll over, crawl and now Paige is walking 3-4 four steps at a time! I've fallen even MORE in love with my husband as I've watched him step up to the challenge of fathering 3 small children, and doing it with grace and love. I've been hugely blessed by our church family who were there almost every day for the first couple months of the twins life... bring food, folding laundry, changing diapers, etc. I can not overlook all those blessings.

Here's my wishes for 2010:
Health, for me and my family. We're all working on that.
Sleep. We're working on that too.
Faith. God and I are going to hang out more together.
Family. A two-week trip home to Canada is happening this summer.
Joy. Enough said.

Wishing you all of the above for 2010!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Christmas trip to Grandma's house...

On Boxing Day, we packed up the family and headed to southern California that night. Steve was determined to make the drive while the kids could sleep in the car and we left at 2:30 a.m. Yes... you read that right. As much as I hate to admit it, he was right. Because it was definitely the wakeful hours that were the most miserable.

We arrived at Steve's mom with plenty of time to open the remaining Christmas presents and enjoy a fabulous Christmas dinner! Then the next day we went to the San Diego Wild Animal Park. I've always wanted to go there, so I was pretty excited. Probably not as excited as Molly though.

Paige on the other hand was much more intense about the whole affair, and both she and Garrett were enthralled watching all the activity from the comfort of their stroller.

It was very special for the kids to get to spend the entire day with Grandma, and they couldn't have been happier about it.

The highlight of the day was definitely the Lorakeet exhibit. We purchased some "nectar" (a.k.a. bird food) and the birds flocked to us. Molly didn't want them on her, but she was more than happy enjoying them perched on Grandma.

The rest of our trip will probably be a little more low-key, but it's nice to just spend time together as a family.

Christmas Festivities - Take 2

Christmas Day started with a bang and ended with a whisper. After the gifts were all opened, we had lunch and enjoyed Jesus' birthday cake (an annual tradition). Then the entire family had naps. That was a real Christmas gift in itself. In the afternoon Molly took her new bike for a spin in the backyard... still in her pajamas. In fact, we all spent the entire day in our jammies. It couldn't have been a more perfect Christmas. Here's a couple of video clips from the rest of our day:

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Festivites - Take 1

I hope you are all having a fabulous Christmas. Although we had planned on going to Steve's mother's house for Christmas, our plans changed a few days ago when our kids were all still sick. We made the decision to head south after Christmas instead and give the kids some time to get healthy. That meant I had to do some rapid planning to organize our Christmas at home.

Yesterday (Christmas Eve) Steve worked a half-day while the kids and I made our birthday cake for Jesus. Then when he got home we packed up the family and went to an early family Christmas Service at a nearby church (since our church doesn't do a Christmas Eve service). It was such a nice service and I was SO thankful that it was only an hour long. Keeping 3 small kids engaged that long was hard enough. After that we came home and enjoyed a great ham dinner. Then we sprinkled oats and sparkles on the front lawn (thanks Aunt Nan) so that the reindeer could find their way to our house. We also put out cookies and milk for Santa. By this point Molly was pretty much vibrating, but we got her to wind down by reading her book about the First Christmas.

Then this morning the babies were up at their usual time (6:30 a.m.) and we sat around waiting for Molly to wake up. Here's the tree and Santa gifts waiting for her to arise!

Finally around 7:45 a.m. she arose and the festivities began. Here's a video showing you her reaction when she realized that Santa came, and then Garrett and Paige enjoying some of their gifts!

And here's a classic picture of Paige a little annoyed that we put a bow on her head. Molly was a great helper though, and was more than happy "helping" Garrett and Paige open up their gifts!

And here I am with my sweet babies! They enjoyed all the commotion but (as anticipated) they enjoyed the paper and boxes more than anything.

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you all Merry CHRISTmas! Here's praying that 2010 is a year of happiness and health for our family and yours!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Mr. Personality

Our sweet Garrett has a TON of personality. He does everything big. If he's happy he's REALLY happy. If he's sad he's REALLY sad. And as the video shows below, if he's loud he's REALLY loud. He is also really into giving kisses right now (as seen in the video) and he just happens to think it's the funniest thing ever.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Christmas jammies...

When I was growing up, my mom would always buy Christmas jammies for me and my sisters. They were special pajamas that we would put on Christmas Eve so we'd have them on when we opened presents Christmas morning. And usually these jammies matched or coordinated. I totally wanted to carry that tradition on with my kids. Luckily, not only did I find matching pajamas for them... but they even came with HATS! Love it!

Annual Christmas light tour...

Well, today was our 2nd annual Christmas light tour. This year we decided to hit up Dovewood Court, which is a cul-de-sac in this area that is apparently totally decked out. So I dressed the kids in their matching holiday jammies (complete with hats) and loaded them into the van. Our first task was getting hot chocolates at the drive-through.

The lights were pretty amazing. Every house had a "theme" and every single house was completely decked out. One person had even converted the inside of their garage into a Christmas toy fantasy land with rotating platforms and moving figures. Another person had a light show to music. I liked the gingerbread town.

And Molly's favorite was the Grinch Who Stole Christmas complete with "roast beast".

It was a fun time for our family! And considering everyone was feeling a little under the weather, it was the perfect excuse to get bundled up and drink hot chocolate! And of course it was a great excuse for me to dress the kids in cute matching outfits! :)

Friday, December 18, 2009

Soothing the savage beasts...

While I was away from the house for a short period, Daddy got a taste of how difficult it can be when you have two miserable babies. Sometimes if they're teething they can both be so inconsolable. And when there's two of them it makes it pretty difficult. But one thing that always works is "wearing" them. I pretty much NEVER do this anymore considering that's over FIFTY pounds of baby, but I guess Daddy is stronger than me. I love that he got Molly to take a picture of him.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Christmas at Sanctuary...

This Sunday evening we had the Christmas program at our church. I got to play with the band, which was particularly fun because it was Christmas last year when I took a "leave of absence" from playing to have the twins. I didn't realize how much I missed it!

But the highlight was definitely the children's program. Molly was SO CUTE with her little buddies. I took a video clip and unfortunately the lighting is really low so it's kinda hard to see, but you get the idea. We'll have to remember to pay more attention to the lighting next year...

And here's a shot of Molly with her buddy Keilani. These two are so stinking cute! Molly and Keilani look so much alike and I think if we were out in public people would think I have two sets of twins.

I want to send my best to Marisa (our Children's Director) and her husband Mitch (our drummer) who are leaving our church next Sunday to work with another congregation. You guys will be missed terribly, and I can't thank you enough for the love you've breathed into our church family.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Some scanned pictures...

For a few weeks, I've had some pictures that I needed to scan for the blog but there has never seemed to be a free moment to do that. Until this morning! First, I wanted to show you Molly's preschool photos! I bought the smallest photo package because I was kinda figuring that the pictures would suck. But I was pleasantly surprised! My hat's off to the photographer! Here's Molly individual picture:

And here's her class photo. I can't imagine that posing that many 3-year olds was an easy feat! Molly's favorite friend in the class in Kate, who is in the same row as Molly, second from the end (in a black shirt with white design). You can click on the picture to see it larger.

And then a couple of weeks back we had to go to the mall and Santa was there. Molly was STOKED to sit on his lap, which is a huge milestone because it is the FIRST year that she was willing to sit with him (let alone beg to do it). I was so thrilled to have her sit and chat with Santa, and she informed him that she wanted a "big girl bike" for Christmas. She's outgrown her tricycle, so it wasn't much of a surprise to us. Hopefully Santa comes through on Christmas Day!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

10 months old!

It's hard to believe that Paige and Garrett are 10 months old now. Time seems to be flying by so fast. Maybe it's the sleep deprived daze we've been in. Anyways, here (in order) are Garrett, Paige and Molly's 10-month pictures! Paige and Molly look more and more alike to me as the months roll by.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Another step to walking...

Well... Paige is another step closer to walking. We broke out the baby walker, and she grabbed onto it and walked right across the room. It won't be long now. And of course, Garrett had to be part of the video too. He couldn't let his sister have ALL the attention! He's also starting to stand unsupported so he's not too far behind her.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Edible Art

This weekend, Molly and I did something that I always wanted to do as a kid but never had the opportunity... we made a gingerbread house. I wasn't brave enough to make the gingerbread myself, so we bought a kit from Costco. I worked the "glue" (icing) and Molly stuck the candy on. And I must say that it turned out pretty cute!

The kit came with an extra gingerbread man, which I let Molly decorate and eat. She was vibrating with her sugar rush when it was all said and done.

And here's a picture that she instructed me to take... of her trying to eat the whole house at once.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

These kids make me laugh

Today, Molly and I were driving to a friend's house to go see their new baby girl. We had a funny conversation that went something like this:

Mom: We're going to go see my friend and her new baby.
Molly: Two babies?
Mom: No
Molly: Three babies?
Mom: No. Just one baby.

Obviously we've been hanging out too long with my friends with twins and triplets. And the conversation continued...

Mom: When we're there, you are only allowed to touch the babies feet. Okay?
Molly: Why?
Mom: Because it's a new little itty bitty baby and we don't want to give it our germs.
Molly: Itsy bitsy like a spider?
Mom: No bigger than a spider.
Molly: Spiders are awesome. I have two babies in my tummy.
Mom: Really?
Molly: Their names are Garrett and Paige.

She was totally cracking me up. Love that kid. Garrett is also one funny little boy, although his gig is more physical comedy. He'll do something totally random that he'll find funny and will fall over laughing. He's also the poster child for why you should never let you children get a hold of medicine in bottles. I just had to snap a picture before I took it away from him...

Monday, November 30, 2009

A prelude to walking...

Well... we just got used to crawling and now it looks like we'll have a walker in the next month or so. Paige has been pulling up and cruising along (and between) furniture for a few weeks now. But in the last few days she has become skilled at standing on her own without any support. She just lets go and you can see the look of determination on her face as she tries to stay balanced. She wants to get walking so badly and I'm sure it won't be long.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Decks the Halls...

Every year on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving), it is our family tradition to decorate our home for Christmas. And this year was no exception. We started by putting on the Christmas music and boiling spices to make the house smell "Christmasy". We didn't even change out of our jammies the entire day. Molly enjoyed it so much and took her ornament hanging very seriously.

And here's the decked out tree, protected from the gruesome twosome with sturdy baby fencing. It's a good thing we have that fencing as Paige has tried scaling it, getting around it, and pushing it over just to get to that tree.

After the tree was up and the house decorated, we relaxed and watched some classic Christmas movies... Frosty the Snowman and Rudolph. The plan was for the kids to nap and then afterwards we would make gingerbread men. Unfortunately, that wasn't the case and plans changed abruptly when Molly woke up for her nap puking. It seems that she picked up the stomach flu. Soooo.... the rest of the day was spent disinfecting everything and everyone. Oh well. Gingerbread men will have to wait for another day.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving...

What a fabulous Thanksgiving! We had a nice relaxing morning at home. Molly watched the Macy's Parade (which she was completely enthralled with) while I cooked and Steve unpacked the Christmas decorations. Then after naps, we packed up our family and went to Aunt Nancy and Uncle Fred's house to join the crowd. Here's Nancy getting some cuddles in.

Nancy hosted TWENTY of us for dinner, and although we all helped out here and there, she cooked TWO large turkeys. It was an absolutely outstanding meal. And for dessert we had our choice of pumpkin pie, apple pie or pumpkin cheesecake (or any combination of aforementioned desserts). YUM!

And after the meal, instead of sitting around and watching football, the men (without being asked) cleared the food, washed the dishes, and cleaned the kitchen. I was very impressed.

While the boys cleaned up, the women enjoyed the kids. Molly and Paige spent most of their time trying to grab hold of Cousin Tina's pocket dog named Gucci. He wasn't overly impressed.

And of course, getting together with the cousins always means a lot of running around, screaming and wrestling.

Before we traveled home for the night, we got the kids out of their matching holiday outfits and into their matching jammies. Did I mention how much I like to dress my kids in coordinating outfits?

What a wonderful day! It truly makes me thankful for my wonderful family and the amazing, kind and loving family I married into. Not many people are so lucky.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Steve's Birthday!

Today Steve turned 36 years old. While he was at work, Molly was so excited as we got Daddy's present wrapped, put together his cards, took out the candles for his pumpkin cheesecake, and bought a HUGE mylar balloon. When he got home, Molly practically bowled him over wishing him "happy birthday". I think seeing her excitement was probably the best present she could have gotten him.

Monday, November 23, 2009

The twins first playdate...

Well... today Garrett and Paige had their first playdate. We've been over to the homes of Molly's friends, but nothing just for the twins. But today, we went to the home of my friend with triplet girls that are 6 days older than my twins. Five 9-month old crawlers is a little chaotic... but still a ton of fun.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Welcome to the insanity...

Life with two little crawlers tearing around has been an interesting adjustment. I love the picture above because it's like Garrett is praying, "Please God... don't let her wreck anything." Or maybe that's just what I'm praying constantly. Needless to say, they crawl VERY fast now and often are going in two different directions. So... we introduced the baby cage (a.k.a. - the play yard).

This handy dandy fencing has saved me. It had gotten to the point that I would take Garrett out of the van and sit him down in the TV room. And by the time I had gone back to the van to get Paige out he was crawling into the garage. So at least now I have somewhere safe to deposit them when I'm not in the room! But I must admit, having them crawling has actually made life easier because now they are so "self entertaining". When they get bored with one toy they just move on to the next or go terrorize Molly.

And just because they're so stinking cute, here's a few more pictures. Paige is enjoying her bath and Garrett is playing peek-a-boo with a blanket. Could they be any cuter?

Monday, November 16, 2009

First tooth...

Well, I'm happy to report that after two days of Garrett looking like this...

... he is the proud owner of his first tooth. Let's just pray that the other ones are a little easier.