Sunday, October 31, 2010

Just another Brianna story

 We've had some nap issues with Brianna. She's usually fought it to some extent, but typically it's pretty painless to convince her to go lay down. All I have to do is tell her something fun we'll do AFTER she takes a nap. But some days she gets overtired and then it's a battle. She's not ready to give up naps though - I've made the mistake of letting her just bypass naptime and then she's a monster around 5pm, crashes somewhere, then is up til 10 or later. No fun. So even when she assures me she's not sleepy, I stand my ground. But I try to stay calm and ignore her freak-out crying and just keep repeating, "we'll be able to do that [whatever she's begging for, usually a movie or playing on the swings] after you go lay down on your bed and take a nap."
Today she had arrived home from having tons of fun with her friend Maya at the library, and she was pretty wound up. She insisted she was NOT TIRED. I was sitting on the couch feeding Bennett. She kept whining and throwing a tantrum so I asked her to go to her room if she was going to keep on being so loud. So she ran off, and literally 90 seconds later I found her buried into her Elmo chair, totally passed out. Notice: bum in air, thumb in mouth, dirty feet, too-small Halloween festive clothes. That's my girl!

More Halloweening

As usual...Brianna insisted on trying the babies' clothes on.
I think I already posted this one... I just really like it

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Friday, October 29, 2010

Great Grandma

Last Saturday we got a little crazy brave and took a day trip "up North" (that's how people here refer to all Utah cities from Utah County up). Brian went to his cousin Brooke's wedding in Provo, and since I obviously couldn't go (the kids tend to be a little irreverent during weddings everything) I decided that I might as well be totally wild & crazy and drive even farther North. Never doing that again by myself. I had to stop a bazillion times for the babies, sing Old Macdonald overandoverandover with Brianna, protect my vehicle and precious cargo from psychotic Utah drivers, weave around massive construction on I-15, and swim through torrential rain. Fortunately my final destination was an LLL workshop - just about the safest and most accommodating place for us possible. Loved spending the afternoon there. That was all the way up in Ogden, but we stopped in Bountiful to drop Brianna off at my cousin Jill's (thank you Frasiers!!) and to visit this Great lady:
Our children with Oneita Smith - their mother's father's mother
She seemed genuinely delighted for the surprise visit, which made me feel really good. I know she gets pretty lonely. But at age 87 she still stays busy and is always serving others. She's a wonderful person for Brianna and I to be named after.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Surprise, Smiths! Not.

Smith fam - you'll never believe what I'm making ya'll for Christmas:

Shocking, right? The 9 years previous to this of receiving a family calendar from me gave you no hint that perhaps you might receive one again. Right? Right. Well.
Hope you appreciate them! I'm devoting my entire weekend to getting these done. One hand on a baby, the other on the laptop. They'll be a lot more simple this year... not like last year's 20-hour project. But still functional and fun.
Be so excited! Special features this year include individual photos on days of birth, anniversary acknowledgments, and no messing up Dave's family's dates. Still feeling really bad about that blunder from last year.
Since I'm spoiling the big surprise now (assuming my family members actually look at my blog), try to ACT surprised when you get these in the mail mid-December!
And most important - the whole purpose of these calendars - no excuse for forgetting my birthday.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Little c

Courtney in Cousin Cougar's baby outfit (thanks Linds!)
I've never thought any of our children look like Brian nor I. Even though people often will say that Brianna looks just like Brian, and she does resemble my toddler pictures a little, I still can't look at her face and think she looks like anything but... her. Bennett absolutely looks like Brian's baby pictures, but not like him now. And Courtney... I just noticed last night that we have very similar features. Thin lips, round face, ears that slightly stick out, and our eye and eyebrow shapes are the same. But I still can't look at her and think she looks like me. I guess that sounds odd. Tough to explain. Or maybe other moms can relate?!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Desperate times call for....

Letting baby nap in the swing, facing the wall, with a blanket over top to keep it dark.
Not my first choice.
First choice is for baby to be sleeping on my chest, while I'm reclined, blissfully co-napping with soft music in the background...
But that just doesn't happen with 3-under-3-versus-1. 
In Chelsea's-perfect-world, the babies would both be sleepy and wakeful at the same hours - with all sleepy hours in the dark and wakeful hours during daylight - and simply close their eyes and drift off when I laid them down next to each other in one crib...
But - HA! No, on this particular day, Courtney had gone down for their afternoon nap easily, but Bennett had been up longer and was just fighting the droopy eyes. I begged him to give in. Just sleep. SLEEP. C'mon - I want sleep like a fat kid wants cake - can't YOU want it that bad too?!  But no... nothing would work. I wore him in my Mei-tai. Then the ring sling. We rocked. We bounced. We nursed. We swaddled and swayed to the ocean-waves noise machine. Finally I broke my own rules. He got buckled into the ol' Graco and fussed less than a minute before dozing off.
I prayed the batteries would hold out for a couple hours.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Friday, October 22, 2010

Pink marshmallow with salt

I love putting my kids in ridiculous outfits:
This one-piece outfit is about 2 inches thick with fluffy cotton. I call it the pink marshmallow.








Unrelated:
This is what was said by miss Brianna while I was changing Courtney: "why can't you keep your pants clean Courtney? Why? WHY? I just want you to keep your pants CLEAN." [in a very dramatic voice]
 aaannnnd:
"I put salt on you and I eat you yumyum!"  [no idea where she got that. I promise we don't joke about eating our kids. At least not with salt on them.]

Flyin' Brian

Brian has been awesome with doing his part at night for the babies. He brings them to me, does diaper changes, gets water for me, and never complains. I'd say some cliche like, "I'd die without him,"  or "I don't know what I'd do without him," but I found out exactly what I'd do without him. I don't die... but I barelybarely keep my head above water. That night was awful.
See this pretty picture? It's what Cedar looks like from a private plane ride.  Brian texted it to me. I texted back a very snide, "STOP BRAGGING!"
While I stayed home all by myself trying to take care of 3 under 3, Brian spent the evening soaring above Southern Utah and the Wasatch Front. He had to pick up a rental in SLC, and happened to know a pilot going there from St. George. How convenient. For him. For me... it was the worst news ever. I almost cried when he told me he wasn't coming home til the wee morning hours. Bedtime is HARD solo. I always have to guard the babies against Brianna... she doesn't hurt them on purpose (I think), but she likes to play with them - games like hide the baby, where she puts a heavy blanket over their head and says, "where did Bennett go?"    It'd be funny... if it didn't give me a panic attack just thinking about it. So I have to stay in the same room as both babies. So what do I do when I'm in the bathroom, both of them half bathed, and I realize their jammies are across the house... plus Brianna's in the tub, throwing her toys into the toilet, begging me to come wash her hair, I'm starving cuz I haven't had a free minute to eat dinner, I'm grumpy because I never got to go running that day, the phone is ringing... and I know there's no respite coming. It's all me.  We somehow survived... I managed to get both babies to bed while Brianna ran around the house air-drying... then I got her to bed (which she wasn't happy about doing without kissing her daddy goodnight), then I got back to the babies because they had woken up again...then I heard Brianna playing with her toys, but since the lights stayed off in her room I didn't care and just went to bed. 
The next morning Brian asked why the bathroom was a wet wreck.  I told him it was because he was on an airplane.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

11 week update

Not that 11 weeks is any sort of major milestone... it just happens that Courtney and Bennett are 11 weeks old today, and I have a few minutes to type - with BOTH hands!  They're having their morning nap right now. Their napping is kinda-sorta-maybe getting a little more regular and predictable. They're up with the sun a little after 7, then eat, play (meaning, Brianna and I see how many smiles and coos we can get out of them), then nap around 9, Brianna watches a movie while I get on the treadmill or do my Insanity workout DVD, babies get up sometime between 11-12, eat, play, and then I try to have all 3 take an afternoon nap around 1. I SHOULD nap too at that time... but I usually use it to do housework or computer stuff. If Brianna has a playdate after her nap I load up the kids in the stroller and take her there, otherwise we all hang out at home in the backyard or in the living room, playing with Brianna's activity bins or whatever. From about 4:30 til Brian gets home at 6:30ish is when it's really tough. Ideally the babies take another late afternoon nap, but sometimes they've been thrown off routine and are too wound up or... I don't know... it's tough to know why they're grumpy in the late afternoon. Often I'll load them all up in the stroller (one baby in back, Brianna in front, other baby in my Mei-Tai or ring sling) and walk to Sunset Park, so the babies will fall asleep again (or at least be content) and Brianna will be happy. Brian probably gets sick of my 6pm phone calls begging him to HURRYHURRYHURRY home. His office closes at 5:30, but he's never been home before 6:15. Sometimes it's as late as 7:30. When he gets home I either go on a run, or do my Insanity DVD, whichever I didn't do in the morning. Or if he's too late or I'm too tired, we just have dinner then get the babies ready for bed. They always go down before 8:30. Sometimes as early as 7:30. I like our routine - they seem to have caught on that bathtime means bedtime. We keep the bathroom lights dim while bathing them one after another in the sink in a little hammock-type tub. They LOVE baths - they get so calm and smiley. Then we bring them in our room where both of their bassinets are (I can't believe I originally thought they could share a bassinet - ha!), have the room as dark as possible for me to see what I'm doing, the sound machine on ocean waves setting, and I feed them both. Brian gets Brianna into her tub while I do that, then checks on me every few minutes because sometimes one of them needs to burp or finishes early and I can't do it myself because it would disturb the other baby. 
This twin thing is seriously a two person job at times.
Bumbo!
Sometimes the babies need pacifiers to fall asleep - like if my milk supply was low, which I'm always paranoid it is. It's so tempting to freak out and start pumping or taking fenugreek or whatever. But I just have to trust that my body will regulate itself to what my babies need, as long as I'm letting them eat as much and as often as they want. I don't have time for pumping. Or the desire to at all. The last time I did was in the ER when I was getting my stitches 2 months ago. It just doesn't feel right to me. I pumped alllllll the time with Brianna, but not until she was older - like 8-9 months - and I thought it would give me more freedom. Ha. I'm going to try and keep it simple this time around. Just breastfeed directly until they ween themselves. I'm actually dreading having to start solids in February. That seems like a long time away though. I can't picture my babies doing or being any different than they are now. I can't picture them crawling or sitting up... but I think it will be SO fun when they are! Especially for Brianna. I can't wait until she has two little playmates.
Tummy time - Courtney was taking a break.
So - there's the run down of our typical days and all the fascinating things on my mind.
Stop yawning. It's a wild exciting life, I promise.
So it's not. But I'm really happy right now. I love my kids and this motherhood thing more everyday. I'm trying to get better at it, and I'm seeing gradual improvements. I learn a lot through trial and error. It's one step back, two steps forward.
video Even though videos obviously won't show up when I print this blog into a photobook (but wouldn't it be cool if they DID?!), I still want to take short 30 second clips like this often, so I can remember what my babies were like at each stage. This stage of life is called, "blank stares while wiggling and gurgling."

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Happy Bennett

videoIn case you're like me and rarely watch anyone else's video clips they post on their blog... here's the gist: For thirty seconds, I do baby talk to Bennett and attempt to make him perform the same big smiles and cute noises he does when the camera is NOT on him. Does it work? Kindof. Not really. I'll keep trying to get a better recording of it, because it's heart-melting cute and sweet. Not that I'm biased.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Good daddy, bad photographer

Maybe if I ever used a camera besides the one on my phone I'd be able to better capture sweet little moments like this...
Oh well. Poor quality photos are better than none, right? Or maybe not. I complain to my mom that I have hardly any photos of my childhood, and my kids will someday complain to me about the thousands of photos of their childhood that are blurry.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Family Night, Brianna-style

I got smacked with the guilt-bat when I read this quote recently:
"I wonder if having unplanned and infrequent family home evenings will be enough to fortify ourselves and our children with sufficient moral strength to meet the complexities of our day." --James E. Faust  
The answer to that is a big fat NO. And the answer to whether or not our little family has regular, planned Family Nights is NO.  We've been on and off with it throughout the years. Mostly off. I justify our laziness, thinking we'll be better when the kids are older and can participate more. But what are the odds that we'll suddenly be good FHEers if we don't make it a habit now? So we're trying. The current game plan is to sing a song (Brianna knows almost all the words to Families Can Be Together Forever), then choose a basic gospel topic and have a discussion about it on Brianna's level. Last week was prayer. Our conversation last just a couple minutes, but I think it was productive. She announced at the end, "Bennett NEEDS to pray!"   Yes, yes he does... that sinful little diaper-waster.

Tonight's topic was Jesus.
 "To fathers and mothers, to grandfathers and grandmothers, and to those without children of their own who lovingly nurture children and youth, my counsel is to speak more frequently about Jesus Christ. In His holy name is great spiritual power. 'There [is] no other name given nor any other way. . . whereby salvation can come unto the children of men, only in and through the name of Christ' (Mosiah 3:17)." --Neil L. Andersen

Here are some highlights from the conversation:
Me: Brianna, who is Jesus Christ?
Brianna: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I go nursery. I play with Sienna.
Me: Jesus is Heavenly Father's Son
Brianna: No it's dark now. Sun gone.
Brian: Brianna, when we do bad things, Jesus forgives us.
Brianna: I say sorry and not go time-out.
Me: Yes! Because of Jesus, we don't have to go to time-out forever. If he didn't die for us, we would go to timeout forever!
Brianna: Jesus die like Beast!  [she recently watched Beauty and the Beast]
Me: And Jesus came back to life just like the Beast did!
Brianna: It was raining. We can't go swing.
Brian: Jesus is our brother.
Brianna: No Bennett my brudder! Courtney my sister.
Me: Jesus was nice to everyone, even people that weren't nice to him. Can you try to be like Jesus and be nice to everyone?
Brianna: I hit Daddy.

Maybe we should've just ended after the song.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Mommy and son

My camera phone makes photos sideways randomly, sorry.
I realized today that I don't have any pictures of just myself and Bennett. Even though my two youngest arrived at the same time, they still deserve as much individual attention as possible. And unlike mothers who have their children one at a time, I'm having to get used to two amazing concepts simultaneously: - I have two daughters and a SON. It's so crazy to say that to myself. Not quite real yet.
I love that I have a son. Before he was here I couldn't picture myself raising a boy. Maybe every mom feels that way about the opposite gender of their firstborn child. I only saw myself with little girls. Boys just seemed so.... gross.  How mature is that, right? But that's how I felt! They just seemed uncuddly. Like all they want to do is go bug hunting and wrestle and pick their nose and put earthworms in their pockets. And boy clothes just aren't as cute as girl clothes. Sorry - it's the truth.
But... my little Bennett changed my outlook completely! I absolutely adore him. I call him my little man, my man cub, my baby B, my tough guy... he gives me the sweetest smiles, and falls asleep while staring at my eyes... there's nothing uncuddly about him! I'm so looking forward to seeing him grow up and become a toddler, a little boy, a young man, a grown man....  wow - so overwhelming to imagine! My little Bennett is going to be a man someday. Hopefully one a lot like his father. He already looks a lot like him - so I'm told. I don't really see it. But I don't think my girls look like me either, and I've been told I'm wrong on that one.
In this photo he's wearing his first tie. It's pink, because he's cool with his manhood and not afraid to wear "girly" colors.
But most of the time I keep him in blues and dark greens... because he's a BOY and I love that.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

First post-preg + post-injury 5K

There are few things I get as excited about as a local fun run. I love everything about them. I've probably done at least 500 in my lifetime. I have 2 large boxes stuffed full of old race shirts. Which means I've spent thousands in entrance fees. But they're worth every penny. I can't think of a better way to start a Saturday. My dream is to travel the world, doing races in different countries. My feelings for running/racing closely resemble the way I've heard junkies describe their need for a hit.
But the little SUU Homecoming 5K here in Cedar was enough to give me a high that lasted all weekend. It was awesome. Then again, anything involving me doing something non-child-related is awesome. The course was hilly and challenging and partly on trails (which I'm slightly paranoid about, ever since that little, uh, near-death incident). I felt kinda out of place there, like everyone was staring at me thinking, "what are YOU doing here - you don't look like a runner, with that muffin top." But I actually didn't even see anyone that I knew, besides my friend's little brother and two ladies from my ward. I loved that there was no pressure - it didn't matter if I was dead last. I was just there for personal fulfillment. And to set the bar for myself. Every 5K from here on out must get progressively faster. Or I will have some serious feelings of lack of self worth. Kinda not joking. So the bar is set at 23:33. I'm embarrassed to write that. But I have really good excuses, right? Twins, injury... blahblahblah. It doesn't make me feel much better about my current fitness level. There's another 5K here in town in a couple weeks. Can't wait! I'm so grateful Brian is so supportive. His job is a lot harder than running... he has to keep 3 kids happy while I'm gone! But as long as I don't interfere with his work schedule, doesn't complain at all with whatever I need him to do. He even picked up our huge Bountiful Basket order at 6:45am because I didn't want to waste my limited morning energy. I want to do the Snow Canyon Half Marathon next month. But I'm not ready. I haven't done a long run over 7 miles yet. We'll see. I don't want to injure myself. After Brianna, I did too much too soon and ended up with plantar fasciitis. In my mind I'm invincible. But my body constantly reminds me that I'm not 20 years old and 30 pounds lighter than I am now. So I have to be careful. I'm glad I can honestly say I gave it my all at the 5K. No regrets. I treated the event as if it was actually a big deal and had some sort of significance beyond the short time it took out of my morning. It was important to me. And since the rest of the minutes and hours in my days are mostly filled with doing things for the little people, I don't feel bad about sacrificing family time to indulge in my favorite hobby.

Brianna is the monkey in the middle

First postpartum St. George trip

I've officially recovered and entered complete self-reliance, because we successfully completed a Costco and temple trip last Saturday.
Well, as long as Brian is with me I'm self-reliant. So... co-reliant? Spouse-reliant? Fine. So I'm still somewhat helpless and homebound without another adult. Whatever. It's 1 against 3! I attempted a library trip last Friday with all the offspring and it was a disaster. But this outing made me feel better. 
We have to have a miraculous amount of luck with the kids' behavior for trips like this. Fortunately we did this time! Kindof.
This photo shows Brian pushing two carts out to our car - each with a child and lots of Costco goodies. I'm in the car feeding the other baby  (Costco really should get a Mother's lounge. There's no where to go to nurse babies, and I'm not skilled enough to bf while babywearing).
I love Costco. I heart them so veryvery much. So many fun new products to buy. This trip: Aussie Bites, Black Bean Torilla Chips, and Roti-Chapati bread. And all the employees are always so nice. And they do United Way campaigns. And they have coupon books for everyone. And samples. If I ever wanted to go back to work (maybe in like 10 years) I'd totally love to do Costco Marketing.
Afterward Brian took the kids to the splash park while I did a quick temple trip. Very quick. But it was so nice to be there again - haven't been since July, for obvious reasons. I felt so peaceful and refreshed afterwards, that it didn't even phase me to find out that Brianna had been a real booger and the babies both messed their outfits. Poor Brian.
It might be awhile before I can convince him to do another St. George trip!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Thursday, October 14, 2010

photos from a friend

And by FRIEND... I mean Godsend!
Seriously, my friend Lisa is the type of friend I want to be. She just shows up and starts helping. And she honestly seems to enjoy it! Just the other day she texted me and said she's coming over to watch the babies so I can do errands. And I did a happy dance.
She sent me these pictures from a few weeks ago.
THANKYOU LISA!!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

From Brianna's mouth lately

-"What's wrong mama? Talk to me!"   (anytime I'm not smiling).
-"Put my brudder in the swing and I push him crazy high!"
-"Stop crying! You're okay!" (to the babies)
-"I sat and sat and sat and sat and sat ALL DAY!"  (when I ask her if she went to the potty. She got this from her Once Upon A Potty book).
-"I not make the mess - DADDY did it! Daddy's mess!"   (anytime I ask her about a mess in the house).
-Unfortunately she's learned to use the words hate and stupid. I think the hate word is my fault, but she must have got stupid from her friends. She's also started using her fingers as a gun and saying "I'm killing you dead!" or some variation of that. I should've trusted my instinct and kept her locked up all day without any interaction with other children. Mom, you agree, right?
-"Turn the lights back on! I can't see my eyes!"
-"I go airplane and go see Nonny?"
-"I need a vitamin before I go bed."
-"It's Jesus movie time!"  (on Sundays when we watch her Animated New Testament videos)
-"I go under covers. You go under covers too Daddy! We hide!"
-"I need to hooooold yoooouuuu."  (of course she only says this when I'm holding/feeding babies and can't oblige. Breaks my heart.)
-"This is MY brudder! Not YOURS!"  (to anyone who gets near Bennett)
-"Mommy, come be a puppy with me! On the ground! Be a puppy!"  (as she's crawling on the ground with her tongue hanging out)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Saturday, October 9, 2010

mother of the year

Last night around 3am I was up with one of the babies... can't remember which one... probably didn't even know at the time which one... and he or she was cryingcryingcrying. I was so frustrated... baby was well fed, burped, fully clothed, it was nighttime.... WHY WEREN'T THEY SLEEPING?!?! I was bouncing around the house, re-swaddling, singing songs, ssshhhing, swinging... nothing worked. Baby still whining. I was so tired my head hurt. Finally Brian came out to see what was wrong... (I had been trying to let him get more sleep, since he had a long day at work behind and ahead of him)... and he asked if I had checked the diaper. 
Duh.
Totally mustard-filled.
Changed it and got baby back to sleep.
You'd think with 3 kids I'd have this whole infant-thing down. But I find myself having "mother of the year" (sarcastic toned title) moments all the time. Every day it seems like. Just stupidstupid mistakes. It's one thing when I'm honestly trying as hard as I can to do everything I know how to do right... but when I mess up on the obvious stuff... I question whether I should quit this job and go back to just teaching swim lessons. At least none of my kids ever drowned. 
If Brianna, Courtney, and Bennett make it to adulthood unscathed... it will be a miracle.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Brianna strolling her babies

She was in an "I'm not looking at the camera (cell phone)" mood.
Like the skirt? My talented and generous friend Kimbo (Gast) made it. Courtney has a matching one, and Bennett has a matching tie!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Picture from Cousin Annalee

My SIL Meg just scanned and emailed this picture drawn by my cute little niece Annalee in Sacramento. It says, "in a bathtub built for two." Annalee is a fun, smart, beautiful 9 year old. I wish we lived closer! I'm sure she'd come over and entertain my kids all day long for me!
We love you Annalee! Thanks for the picture!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcba

I've been working on the alphabet with Brianna since before she could talk. I sang the ABC song to her every day multiple times - specifically on our walks to and from the Rec Center in Vernal every day. So she got that down fast. I'm pretty sure I posted a video of her at 18 months singing the song by herself.
But she had no idea what she was singing.
So I've been trying to teach her the actual letters and their sounds now. It's been frustrating that she never seemed to GET it. I mean, she's only 2.5, so she doesn't actually NEED to know them yet... but I have this ridiculous fear of her not being ready for kindergarten and me getting in trouble for being a slacker mom. And most of her friends around her age seem to know their letters. Or at least that's what their moms have blogged about. So unless they were [ahem] FIBBING....
But I can exhale now, because she's finally got it. One day a couple weeks ago in the bathtub she started correctly identifying all the letters! Either the light bulb suddenly went on, or she's been holding out on me and just staying silent until the big finale. There are still a few she's not solid on, but really.... V, U, W - totally not necessary.    :)
ps - thank you Nonny for the bathtub toys!
pps - I typed the title of this post in 6 seconds without looking at the keys. It's my secret talent.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

2 months old

This 8x10 photo collage hangs on our wall
I can say with absolute certainty that this has been the most difficult two months of my life. The delivery, delivery recovery, the leg injury, injury recovery, the sleep deprivation, the bills, Brianna's adjustment, my perpetually untidy home...
But I'd do it all over again for these two!
I absolutely adore our little babies. Snuggling, cuddling, watching, massaging, bfeeding, talking to them - sweetest moments of my day. I only wish I could spend more time doing those things.
They're getting fatter! Even I notice it. Usually it's just other people commenting on their size increase, but I don't see it because I'm with them all the time. But just a few days ago I really noticed that their legs don't look so scrawny and their arms and shoulders are soft and squishy. I have trouble getting to their necks during bathtime because I have to move aside the rolls. It makes me happy. Very happy.
Sleeping is hit-and-miss. Sometimes they do great - like 6 hour stretches at the same time, or sometimes I'm up every two hours. Or more. I miss regular sleep. They're still napping in the spare car seats, reclined back. I'd love to put them in the crib, but it's a space issue - the crib is in Brianna's room, and we don't trust her yet. I think she'd want to share ALL her toys and stuffed animals with them when we weren't looking. Babies don't like to be smothered, I've heard. And the other room is our computer/office/guest/workout/movie/storage room. So that leaves the corner of our bedroom for the babies, which is too small for a crib. Unless we put Brian's dresser outside in the backyard.
Bennett has purple marker on his head right now. Brianna got to him before I could intervene. She told me last week, "Bennett not like you. Bennett not like milk. I need to hold you" while I was feeding him. It was kinda sad! I really do try hard to spend one-on-one time with her so she doesn't feel neglected. But whatever I do, it will be less than what she's been used to her whole life. Oh well - adjustments for everyone!
I wish I had more time to write about Courtney and Bennett. Not that they DO very much... besides those cute little baby pushups...
We just got back from their checkup. The results... [drum roll].... Courtney is 9lb 9oz 22in, Bennett is 9lb 11oz 21.5in.  Head circumferences... I don't remember. Meh. Who cares about that one anyway. For their weights, Courtney is in the 10th percentile, Bennett is in the 19th.  Heights are like 49th I think. I don't like those numbers though, because they're being compared to all other babies in the US born on their same birthday. So they're being compared to babies born full term. And babies who didn't share a womb. But I do like those percentile numbers because they're getting higher at every checkup!
I think our doc really enjoys his twin patients.
Getting to the appointment was a Herculean effort. Seriously, my head was spinning. Brianna insisted on tagging along, even though I offered to let her play at any friend's home she wanted. For some reason Brianna thinks it's awesome to go to the doctor. She loves it. Though every time we're there she ends up crying hard  (shots, medicine, having to leave the toys). She doesn't even like being measured and weighed. But I had to let her come. Thankfully Brian was able to take his lunch break and meet us there. I would've crashed and burned without him. Taking 3 kids out, all under the age of 3, all by myself, is insane. Absolutely insane. Doesn't matter how much I hate being trapped at home all day. Trying to leave is worse. Once we get going the babies usually fall asleep, then it's ok. But if they're crying, it's miserable and I feel awful. And of course taking them in and out, holding two babies, my purse, diaper bag, Brianna... I need 4 arms. Actually 5 - one to open doors.
Brianna ended up getting her flu shot! I was so grateful to get that out of the way.
Eeek! Sorry this looks freaky - it's just Acetaminophen. They loved it.
Though I'm totally uneasy about vaccinations/immunizations - I fully believe there's junk in those concoctions and there are real chances of horrible side effects... but the benefits outweigh the risks. By far. I cannot afford to have a sick toddler in my house. I'm making Brian get a flu shot too. I might have to pin him down kicking and screaming just like we did for Brianna. The babies did great for the their shots! Way better than Brianna ever did! They screamed of course, but stopped abruptly after less than 10 seconds. No joke. And I didn't shed a tear or even cringe very much. When Brianna had her first shots, I BAWLED. It killed me to see my baby in pain. But now I just take it in stride. I feel bad about that - I'm so calloused. I really like our Pediatrician, which is a lot to say. I haven't especially liked any of the others - and we've gone through several with all our moves and different clinics. Next shoot-out and weigh-in: 4 months!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Newsworthy

I finally put the babys' birth announcements in the free county paper. I didn't really want to do it. I see no reason to - everyone we care about got a birth announcement in the mail, or can read this blog. But Brian insisted - his family gets a kick out of that kind of thing. So here they are for the wholebecause world (because Southern Utah is the whole world, right?) to see.
Funny - notice the last baby ad - the kid's name is Titan Seven Smith. If you read the ad you'll see he's the seventh child in his family (who all have normal names, except him. Why do parents do such ridiculous names?!?!) So I was thinking... I'm also a seventh child, so I really should have been named Chelsea Seven Smith.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

I've been published!

... No, not in the professional sense. That was the goal in grad school - and I achieved it once (though my name was last in the author list, grrrr). But this is just in an online magazine. A web-mag, I think they're called. I was part of a group interviewed (solicited?) for marriage-related insights. It's called His Eternal Companion (kinda anti-feminist, which I love).


Activity Bins from Nonny

When my mom was here that first week in August she thought of a genius plan to help me with Brianna when she left. She created "Activity Bins."
Each container has a different project for Brianna - playdough, finger painting, watercolors, puzzles, Zimbbos (it's an elephant block stacking game), window chalk, foam shape stickers, construction paper/tape/safety scissors/crayons, flash cards, and Leap Frog Tag Junior (reading activity).
Brianna gets pretty excited when I ask her if she wants to choose an activity bin. She sticks with it longer if someone is doing it with her.
Here she is with the finger painting activity, entertaining her (and Brian, the giant 5-year-old) during General Conference.
It's the best finger paint ever, because it's CLEAR, and the color only shows up when she paints on the special Crayola paper. So no messes.
She asks me to "make circles" and "color A [or B, D, P, whatever letter she did most recently at preschool]."

THANKYOU MOM!  (come back soon! Tomorrow works for me.)

ps - Crayola company, if you're reading this, feel free to compensate me for the free advertising.

Diaper double duty

First Bennett gets his turn, while Courtney patiently waits... (LOVE the "gown" outfits - easy access!)
Then Courtney gets changed and Bennett goes to the bouncer chair (notice the toddler in pink, jumping on the couch)
Then I feed them. Burp them. Play with them. Diaper change again. Nap time.
REPEAT.
REPEAT.
And this is my life.

stamps

I've decided that someday when I'm in charge, stamp prices will never go up. Or at least we'll have "forever stamps" with cuter pictures, like this one of Brianna:

Too bad I just found them, and they're 2 years old - thus only 42 cents. I have to now add two cents to them each time I wish I mail something.
Lame. But finally finding them really made my day.