***Written Monday May 18th***
Hello from San Francisco! Hubby has a conference down here and I luckily got to tag along. Jemma and Zoe are with my in-laws, so we are enjoying a long weekend here. We miss them like crazy, but know that my in-laws are taking wonderful care of them. They have two cribs, two high chairs, two bouncers, and a million toys at their house that I know Jemma and Zoe feel right at home there. We’ve been able to Skype with them and see how they are doing. They both want to grab the screen and seem perplexed about us being “in the computer”.
The girls are now in double digit months, and only two months away from being a year old. I love how much they have grown and how interactive they are, but I have moments of sadness about how fast it’s going. They are no longer babies and sometimes I wish time would slow down so that we could enjoy each stage a little longer.
Since my last post the girls had their nine month pediatric visit.
Weight: 20 pounds 5.5 ounces
Length: 29.5 inches
Head circumference: 46.2 cm
Weight: 17 pounds 3 ounces
Length: 27.5 inches
Head circumference: 44.0 cm
The size difference between them is getting wider. Jemma is in the nineties for head circumference and length percentiles and 80th for her weight percentile. Zoe is in the thirties range for all of her percentiles. When people meet them they always seem a little confused that one of our twins is a little bigger than the other one.
We are continuing to love every minute with our daughters. Zoe is actively crawling and moves very quickly. She is always up on her knees and I’m sure is anxious to stand up. I’m sure she’ll be walking before her first birthday. She loves to blow raspberries and will often have spit bubbles running down her chin from doing so. She still gives us huge infectious smiles and laughs whenever we play peek-a-boo. Zoe was starting to get very fussy taking her bottles, so we are back to giving her her bottles in the twin-z-pillow. Did anyone see the twin-z-pillow on Shark Tank? It’s an amazing invention! Zoe continues to have some issues with her BMs, the doctor told us that if we can handle it without Miralax that would be preferable. We have been continuing to give her an ounce of pear juice with every bottle, have her on the Stage 1 formula, staying away from the starchy foods and offering her water in her sippy cup. She has been going back and forth between “normal” and hard BMs, so this weekend we finally told my MIL that she could introduce goat milk to both girls. She is giving them half formula/half goat milk bottles this weekend and she says it’s starting to help so far. Zoe also has been having a little more trouble going down, she’ll be sound asleep but as soon as you set her down in her crib she wakes up and starts wailing to be picked back up. As soon as she is in our arms she’s happy as a clam. We have to do this a couple of times before she’ll finally be fast asleep.
Jemma wasn’t crawling at all when Zoe started crawling and she would usually watch Zoe move without much complaint. When Jemma did transition from sitting up to being on her tummy she would get very frustrated that she couldn’t move. She started off log-rolling around the living room and has now started with the army crawl. She uses her upper body to pull herself and one leg to push herself and has been able to move around quite well. She doesn’t seem as frustrated and if she is on the hardwood floor can actually move herself around more quickly. Jemma loves to babble and says a lot of bababa, mamama, dadada and Hubby and I can’t help but get excited when she does the mama and dada even though she doesn’t connect us to those words yet. Jemma is a good snuggler and still loves to be carried around before going down for the night. I’ve been getting lots of steps with my Fitbit, pacing the halls with her. Both girls love trying new foods now and if Jemma likes something she waves her hands and will sometimes scream if you don’t give her another bite.
Both girls love their baths! We transitioned to a blow-up tub and can put the girls in the tub together. They play with their bath toys, splash the water and laugh when the other one has the foam shampoo atop her head. It’s so much fun to see them interact.
We will soon be planning their first birthday, I can’t believe it’s almost here. Jemma and Zoe have and continue to bring us so much joy, happiness, wonder and love!
The Top Pot Donut 5K, Jemma and Zoe’s first race!
Happy belated Mother’s Day to my Mom, my MIL and all of my fellow Mom’s out there. Also, I know from past experience how hard of a day it is for those of you still longing to be a Mom, have faith and be hopeful, miracles do happen!
Here we are again! My how time flies! I just captured this photo, it’s a beautiful and sunny day here in Seattle.
We are all getting our Vitamin D for the day. Jemma and Zoe are doing really well. I feel like they are on the cusp of being little girls and not babies any longer. I recently had two very best friends give births to little girls and it’s amazing to me how small they look even though both were a little bigger than our girls when they were born. We forget so soon how tiny and fragile they once were.
We were very fortunate to take the girls to Maui again earlier this month. We all had an amazing time, the girls aren’t quite mobile yet, so we’re taking advantage of traveling now. The flight this time around was a little more challenging than it had been the first two times they flew, Jemma and Zoe are more active and sleep less during the day, so we had to keep them entertained for the almost 6 hour flights. But, now that they are bigger and can sit up, it’s so much fun to take them out to dinner where they can sit in high chairs and have nibbles of our food. They really like everything that we offer them, not too many sour faces.
Jemma still has 8 teeth and has really been very mellow and especially easy-going. However, she had a rough night earlier this week. She was up and screaming, I tried to see if she would settle down on her own for twenty minutes and finally knew something was wrong, we thought it was just a mid-night cry but I think gas was really upsetting her tummy and causing her to be very upset. Her and I spent about 2 hours down in the living room on the sofa before I was able to take her back to the nursery. She is starting to really cuddle and hug and I absolutely love it. She is sitting up very well but not showing much interest in crawling yet. We weighed her at home and think she is around twenty pounds!!! She is very talkative and often cracks herself up.
Zoe still only has 2 teeth and no sign of others coming through. She is still our sweet girl who giggles and laughs constantly but has been a bit more fussy as of late. She hates having her face wiped, she had a cold and was getting her nose wiped often. She also hasn’t been finishing her bottles most feedings. She has had some BM issues-she doens’t go as often as Jemma and when she does it’s usually just a few hard “raisins”. She is getting about 1 ounce of pear juice per bottle and both girls are back to the Stage 1 formula with less iron than the Stage 3 that we had switched them to at around six months. We’ve also cut back on the starchy fruits and veggies and are having more peas, spinach, mangos, peaches, prunes, pears, berries, etc. and are offering more water to the girls. Zoe is weighing in at around seventeen pounds. She is nearly crawling, lots of scooting and backward movement and some forward movement here and there. I think it’ll only be a matter of days before she’s on the go.
The girls will have their nine month doctor visit this upcoming Friday, I’ll be very curious to see where they land in their percentiles. At six months both were above average, but Jemma was in the 90th percentile for both head size and weight. We’ll also be checking in with the pediatrician about how to help Zoe with her pooping issues.
My in-laws are in Hawaii right now. A much needed vacation for my MIL who has been doing all of our childcare. Thankfully, I have a great friend who is watching the girls for a couple of weeks and she’s been a lifesaver helping us out while my MIL is gone.
We really couldn’t be more blessed with such fun, easygoing, happy and healthy babies. Jemma and Zoe continue to fill our hearts with more love than we could imagine, fill our days with smiles and giggles, give us cuddles and hugs and amaze us by how much they are learning and growing.
We are rounding the corner to almost a year of them being a part of our lives. I’m loving every minute but sometimes it just goes too fast.
I recently got a cortisone injection in my left wrist for DeQuervain’s syndrome aka “mommy wrist” and it worked like a charm, no pain. Now I think I might be needing one in my right wrist. My carpal tunnel has been quiet and I’m really hoping to avoid any future surgery. I really don’t want to take time away from taking care of the girls (hands-on) and away from my office.
Very hard to get them to hold still these days!
Had to take away the animals to get a somewhat still photo.
Easter brunch on Maui
Hanging out at the condo
Have a fabulous weekend!!!
Happy Spring! We are having an exceptionally mild year in the Northwest and have been enjoying spring-like weather for quite some time now. Lots of sunny days and surprisingly little rain
Jemma and Zoe are eight months, so hard to believe how fast they are growing. We are still blessed with such fun, happy, easy-going and sweet little girls. They rarely fuss and only cry when tired or hungry.
The girls are eating three solid meals a day, a mix of pureed foods and some finger foods (BLW method). The girls get a bottle first thing in the morning, have three meals followed by smaller bottles throughout the day and then have baths and a bottle before bedtime which has been around 7:30-8:00 PM. Both are still sleeping easily through the night for around 12 hours.
Jemma has 7 teeth now! She has her 4 lower incisors and 3 of her upper incisors. She can easily bite into foods if placed in the front of her mouth. She loves berries and makes “mmmm” sounds when she eats. She is not a fan of avocado and will often gag (and sometimes throw-up) when eating them. She loves mum mums and they disappear quickly.
Zoe still only has 2 of her lower incisors, but the lack of teeth doesn’t keep her from enjoying the same foods as Jemma. She is a good eater but will sometimes blow bubbles/spit her food out and then laughs after doing so. We have to tell her “no”, but then turn our heads to laugh because it’s so funny. Trying not to encourage the bad behavior. Zoe still likes to take her time with her bottles and needs lots of breaks.
Jemma has been more easy-going than in the past lately and is very happy these days. She is starting to clap her hands and loves the song, “When You’re Happy”. Zoe has been a little more fussy lately, but is still overall, very happy. She is getting up on all fours and rocking back and forth. No forward motion yet, but she somehow can move backwards and can get all around our living room.
Hubby has been able to cut back a little at work this month and has been able to stay home with the girls to give his Mom a break from childcare. My Mom is still unable to help us as she is in her third month of recovery following rotator cuff surgery. We gave my parents my old iPad and have been doing FaceTime with them since they aren’t visiting as often. The girls and grandparents really enjoy seeing each other!
Enjoying our US Weekly magazines
Hubby and I survived our first weekend away from the girls earlier this month. Their grandparents had more toys and gear at their place than we have at home! They sent us lots of photos and gave us constant updates. We are very lucky to be returning to Maui again in April. Hoping the trip will go as well as last time.
My bestie just gave birth this past Friday to a beautiful baby girl. This is her second daughter, her older daughter is 2 1/2. It’s so much fun to have so many friends with children around the same age as Jemma and Zoe! Hoping they’ll all be lifetime friends!
Sunday evening and this is my life right at this moment and I’m in love! Girls are having so much fun with Daddy, our living room is chaos and I can’t imagine our life before these little ones came along.
I’m savoring my Sunday since I had to spend all day at my office on Friday and Saturday for in-office training for some dental technology that I want to start implementing. In hindsight, I am so glad that I did the training, but I was not looking forward to the 2-day training as I knew it meant giving up almost two whole days with Jemma and Zoe. Hubby took last Thursday off from work, so he was home three days with the girls and I have to admit I was envious. I’m so thankful to have such a hands-on husband, but I wanted to be with everyone at home also!
Right now I’m trying to find the balance in my life-I love being a Mom but I also love my career. Don’t get me wrong, I know that I’m very blessed to have a job/career that allows me to have a three and a half day work week, but I can’t help but feel guilty that I don’t feel I give either place 100%. On the days that I work, I leave before the girls wake-up and get home just in time for a little play time, baths and bedtime. And I’m always the first to leave my office at the end of the day and often leave chart notes for the following morning. Sometimes it feels as though the days don’t have enough hours! I do feel extremely lucky that our daughters are at home with either of their grandmas, but sometimes I feel like I’m missing the little things.
In the past, I use to try to workout 5-6 days a week, these days sometimes my “workout” is taking the girls for a walk around a nearby lake and I’m perfectly happy with these changes. I’m not going to go to the gym after work when it would cut into my valuable time with the girls.
Everyday these girls are changing and growing so much. Tonight they were both sitting on their own and looked like such big girls!
This upcoming weekend Hubby and I are flying down to Arizona for a wedding, Jemma and Zoe are going to spend the weekend at my in-laws. Here again-finding the balance, I’m sad and anxious to leave the girls for the first time but I’m also looking forward to a weekend with just Hubby. We haven’t had much time to focus on just us, it will be nice to have a date-weekend!
I’m down to pumping one time a day since Friday and plan to be done this week. I’ll be happy to not have to spend the time pumping and deal with pumping at work and all of my pump parts, but I do feel sad about it. I pumped longer than I anticipated I would, but I feel emotional about not continuing to make milk for the girls. I can only imagine that weaning from nursing would be even more emotional and tough.
How do you find balance? If you work outside of the home, what is your biggest challenge? How do you deal with Mom-guilt? Work-guilt? How do you make “me” time without feeling like you are being selfish?
***I know this post sounds like a glass-half-empty post and I know that my life is definitely a glass-half-full life. I just read about this Mom who passed away giving birth to her quadruplets and it broke my heart and scared me at the same time. And I know many of you are still struggling to conceive and are thinking to yourself that I shouldn’t even be complaining. Please know that I am trying to find balance but understand that I cannot complain about my struggles.***
***This is a long post as I feel there is a lot to catch up on! Feel free to skip ahead to the photos!***
Jemma and Zoe are over a half year old now! My gosh, it’s amazing how much they have changed and grown since they were born in July. They are so interactive, smiley, giggly and just so much fun!
Jemma now has 4 teeth, all on the bottom, she was continually biting her lip and making this face, but now that the teeth are in, she seems to have gotten past the habit. Zoe still only has 2 lower teeth and we don’t see any others popping through yet. We are brushing their teeth every evening after bath time, both girls don’t mind at all. Mama wants to see them get into the brushing habit early, as a dentist, I don’t want them to have to visit me at all except to have their teeth cleaned.
Zoe is rolling back and forth constantly now and log rolls herself all over our living room. She is pushing up on her hands and I think will be crawling in not too long (uh oh!). Jemma, on the other hand, is perfectly content to lie on her back. She is capable of rolling onto her tummy, but prefers to be on her back. I don’t think we need to worry about her moving too soon.
The girls are now thoroughly enjoying solids. We tried the Baby Led Weaning method, but it wasn’t going as well or as easy as we thought, so we’ve focused more on purees and are spoon feeding. We give hand held foods occasionally and will probably go back to the BLW in time. They have pretty much enjoyed everything we’ve given them-applesauce, peaches, peas, squash, sweet potato, prunes, and avocados. We captured a video of Zoe while we were on vacation and she was just ecstatic eating peaches and peas, screaming, giggling, and pumping her little arms up and down. Zoe, unfortunately, has had some issues with constipation. I think with the introduction of solids and us changing them to the next level of formula (with more iron) has contributed, we’ve managed it pretty well with prune juice (mixed into her bottles) and hopefully won’t have to resort to other methods. The girls are definitely having more solid BMs now.
Jemma and Zoe are still continuing to sleep 12 hours a night and aren’t napping all that long during the day. We are trying to transition from three to two naps a day. A late morning nap and an afternoon nap and dropping the mid-day nap. They are still great about sleeping in the car and often times in the stroller if we’re on a longer walk.
We recently took six month photos, of both the girls and of our family. We made sure to schedule a morning session as the girls are happiest in the morning. They did great, Zoe’s smiles were a little easier to get, Jemma was in the middle of her lip biting phase and a bit more pensive. Our photographer Stephanie is awesome! If you live in the Seattle area and are looking for a photographer, we highly recommend her.
Another big event is that we took the girls to Hawaii right before their seven month birthday. We spent a week in Maui and the girls did great! We rented a condo in the Kaanapali area and were within walking distance to Whaler’s Village. The girls did great on the airplane ride and probably surprised the passengers around us (who were likely scared when they saw us coming). We purchased one extra seat so that we could bring one of the carseats onboard, which freed up our hands from one baby occasionally. We tried to give the girls their bottles on take off and landing and they didn’t seem to have any troubles with their ears. While in Hawaii, we tried to keep them on their same Seattle schedules as much as possible. It meant a lot of condo time for us, and only one day at the beach, but it was great to spend all day with them for a whole week. We miss them so much while we are at work, so getting to spend so much time with them was wonderful! Also, my front office employee’s aunt is a nanny on Maui, so we hired her twice while we were there. One day she came so that Hubby and I could go to the beach and then out to lunch and another evening so that we could go out to dinner. The girls went to the pool twice and had mixed feelings about it. We did have to get a little inventive at the condo, since it had tile floors everywhere but the bedrooms, we pushed the two sofas together to make a large area where the girls could safely roll around and we had to resort to baths in the kitchen sink since Jemma especially hated being in the shower.
Sitting on the sofa of the condo
Asleep in the couch fort
Ready for the pool
Out to one of our favorite breakfast spots-The Gazebo
I’m still pumping, down to twice a day which is very manageable. I no longer feel tied to my pump and can go about my day without feeling like I have to pump every few hours. My milk supply has dropped pretty drastically since I went from three to two pumping sessions a day. I plan on dropping to just a single pump a day by the end of this week. Hubby and I are going to a wedding in Arizona the first weekend of March without the girls and I’d like to be done pumping by then. The girls are still getting one breast milk bottle a day and will hopefully continue to do so until they are eight months.
We are enjoying spring like weather here in the Northwest, we are lucky compared to the East Coast getting slammed with snow. We are enjoying walks and some outdoor time.
Happy New Year! Hope your 2015 is off to a great start! So far, 2015 has been fun and exciting for us. I have to start off by saying that our Seattle Seahawks are heading back to the Super Bowl!!! Not sure if those of you who aren’t Seahawks or Packers fans watched, but we had the most insane win over the Packers in overtime for the NFC Championship. Jemma and Zoe are already big fans! I had to hold Zoe tight while jumping off from the couch and luckily, Jemma was upstairs napping or otherwise Hubby might have tossed her up in the air with all of his excitement.
Our little Seahawk fans
Jemma’s teeth are almost fully erupted and she likes to bite and chew on things. I can see the slightest hint of Zoe’s lower front teeth and suspect they’ll be poking through soon. Zoe is a little more fussy with her teething than Jemma was. We got the green light from their pediatrician to start solids, their first food was avocado and it was not met with a rave review. I cut the avocado into pieces long enough that they could handle them, the table was a mess, and what little made it to their mouths was soon spit out. The expression on Jemma’s face indicated she was not a fan. Since then they have tried steamed carrots, watermelon, and rice cakes. Food has been more about exploring than eating. I think as their hand coordination gets better, we’ll see more successful self-feeding.
Both girls are rolling from back to front easily, and they have rolled front to back a few times, but not as often. I definitely can’t turn my head while they are on the changing table any longer. Still getting lots of laughs and smiles and also hair and jewelry pulling! Both girls were sharing one exersaucer, so we bought a jumperoo off Craigslist (funny, from another twin family!) and Jemma and Zoe are really enjoying their play time! The girls are continuing to sleep 12 hours a night but naps are still a challenge. Their pediatrician said babies their age usually need about 14 hours a day of sleep, so if 12 of those hours are during the night, naps won’t be very long. It’s a little challenging to get things done around the house with short naps, but I don’t think I’d trade it for a shorter night’s sleep.
The girls had their six month check-up last week and they are doing well.
Weight: 17 pounds 4.5 ounces
Length: 27 inches
Head circumference: 17.52 inches
Weight: 15 pounds 10 ounces
Length: 26 inches
Head circumference: 16.73 inches
This past weekend the girls were both baptized. Family and friends attended the baptism which occurred during the service at church that we normally attend and we all enjoyed brunch afterwards at one of our favorite restaurants. It was a good day all around as it was the same day as the Seahawks win.
We selected life verses for both girls.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts.
We have been so blessed!!!!
I’ve tapered down to four pumping sessions a day, my plan was to give the girls breastmilk for six months, so I’ve made it past my goal. I was hoping to be done pumping by the time we go on vacation in early February, but likely will still be pumping 2-3 times a day by then. I’m happy to continue to give them a little bit of breastmilk daily, hoping they continue to be healthy and avoid all the bugs that have been going around.
I catch myself being amazed at how much babies changes from zero to six months! Jemma and Zoe are definitely little people with big personalities!
Happy Holidays! Hope you had a wonderful holiday and enjoyed time with family and friends. We had a very fun and low key holiday this year (time leading up with Christmas parties, etc. was not as low key!). Like I mentioned in my last post, Christmas is so much more magical viewed through the eyes of children, our little ones are only a little more than five months, so I can only imagine that it will only get more fun in the future.
The Saturday before Christmas we spent the day and evening with my in-laws. We had a lovely dinner and exchanged gifts. Jemma and Zoe were spoiled by their grandparents and aunt and uncle. Lots of clothes, a couple of moving mobiles for their cribs, animal pillows and books. We were planning an evening at the zoo for their Wildlights, but poor, rainy weather changed our plans. On Christmas eve day we headed east to visit my family in central Washington. My Mom just had rotator cuff surgery, so she is recovering and a little immobile. It was the first visit to my home town for the girls, so we had lots of visitors and family friends who were looking forward to meeting Jemma and Zoe for the first time. Once again they were spoiled with gifts from grandparents and friends.
Animal pillows from Auntie and Uncle
We are making some milestones right now. Jemma has rolled over twice and Zoe is very very close (I told her she is 99% there!) and Jemma is getting her two lower front teeth. She has hardly made a fuss with them coming in, so we were very surprised to see them coming through already. Zoe doesn’t have any teeth poking through yet. Both girls are smiling a ton and laughing a lot, it’s so sweet and so much fun. Walking into their room in the morning is by far the best part of my day!!!! Since the girls are starting to roll around, we have moved them into their own cribs. Last night was their first night apart and they did great. We are consistently sleeping 12 hours a night!!! Baths are happening around 7:30 PM and bottles and bed right after. Most mornings they start to babble around 8-8:30. Napping on the other hand hasn’t been going as well, the last few days the girls have only been napping for about 30 minutes at a time, with the exception of a two and a half hour car ride nap both to and from my home town.
As we approach the end of 2014, I feel like I must truly count all of my blessings. I have a wonderful Hubby who is such an amazing hands-on Dad (who loves his little girls immensely), two beautiful, healthy and happy twin girls, two wonderful grandmas who help us with childcare and love our daughters beyonds words, family who love and support us, jobs we enjoy and give us the flexibility to spend time with Jemma and Zoe, and our own health and happiness.
Thank you to all of you who read my blog and write such supportive and uplifting comments. I am thankful for YOU! As 2015 approaches, I hope and pray that it will be the year that will bring many of you the little ones that you have been longing for. I remember clearly what it feels like to be waiting, hoping, praying, and wondering if and when a miracle baby may come along. Have hope, miracles do happen! I think of each and everyone one of you often.
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