Sunday, April 15, 2012

Happy 6-Month Birthday, T and E!

With the pink bears that were with them in their isolettes back in the NICU, so you can see how they've grown!
Full disclosure. Back in my pre-mommy days, I used to secretly scoff at moms who would gush about their babies' 6-month birthdays. "Oh, please," I would think contemptuously as I scrolled down my Facebook news feed. "Talk to me when she's learning to drive. She's still a tiny BABY and yet you're acting like she's all grown up!" Heartless, I know, but that's how it was. (I also used to think baby monitors were for the paranoid, so that shows you what I knew.)

But now, here we are, and oh my gosh! My babies are SIX MONTHS OLD!!!! So if you're reading this and scoffing and not a mom, just know that your day will most likely come. Go ahead and laugh at me now, but one day you too will be in this situation, and you'll get it. I promise. And while I am acutely aware that they are still mere babes (especially today, after waking up with them too many times to count last night... and yes, this after I had smugly declared not that long ago that they were sleeping through the night!), I can't believe I've had them now for six months. What's even more bizarre is that the time frame from the day I learned I was pregnant until the day I delivered them was a couple of days shy of six months - so now they've been out longer than I knew they were in! And when I look at it that way, it seems like the past six months have flown by - especially compared to how sslllloooooowwwwwlllyyyyyy the pregnancy seemed to go.

With that said, here we go!

Evie knows exactly what that armrest is for. You should also know that I love these outfits because they remind me of something my Barbies would have worn in the early '90s. (Of course that's how I feel about 99% of the neon outfits that have come back into style! :)
Dear Tamsie and Evangelyn,
Half a year ago you were entering the world much sooner than we had ever expected, and now in half a year we'll be throwing you your first birthday party! I absolutely love being your Mom, and I'm so thankful God brought you into our lives six months ago!
Tamsie giggling
This month you have been laughing and smiling more than ever. You want to practice standing up all the time, and you love sitting down with a little bit of help. We've really been seeing your personalities unfold a lot lately.
Pretty blue eyes!
Tamsie, you aren't happy unless you're the center of attention. You aren't particularly good at entertaining yourself, but you love being held, played with, talked and sung to. That said, the play mat is the exception to that rule. You really enjoy playing with all the toys on your play mat, and they hold your attention for long periods of time as you grab them, bite them and talk to them. We think you're going to be our social butterfly, because you just love being around people all the time! You have a silly little sense of humor, and a lot of nights you laugh right in the middle of our prayer time. You used to be the first to fall asleep at night and the last to wake up, but you are a feisty little one and you've recently decided you would much rather raise a ruckus at bedtime than go to sleep. We think it's because you're more alert now, and you don't want to miss out on anything! Evie used to eat more than you at nearly every feed, but now you've started outpacing her. We fix 6-ounce bottles of Similac Alimentum for you and your sensitive tummy, and we add 4 heaping scoops of rice cereal. Sometimes you only take 1/4 of the bottle, and sometimes you come close to finishing it. You're really unpredictable like that! Feed times are generally getting easier for you, although you can still fuss when you want to.
Evie and her signature eyebrow raise. We're thinking she might be our left-handed twin, and here's why: I can raise my left eyebrow exactly like that, but I'm right-handed. Since she's reverse, maybe she's left-handed! Also, she tends to roll over to the left first every time, although she is rolling both ways.
Evie, you love attention but you don't demand it quite like Tamsie does, so we have to be sure to give you just as much of it. You enjoy your swing more than just about anything else. While Tamsie either wants to be asleep in her swing or not in it at all, you are perfectly content swinging while you're awake, looking out the window. You are very cuddly and snuggly. When you're lying next to Tamsie, you like to hang onto her with one of your hands. When you eat, you rarely seem to be in a big hurry. Rather, you like to look around at everything and take your time. We fix 4-ounce bottles of Enfamil Nutramigen for you and then add in 3 scoops of rice cereal. Just like Tamsie, sometimes you take the whole thing and sometimes you are just not feeling it at all. You hate bedtime, and you generally always have! When we read to you, you like to talk. We've also noticed that while your Dad and I are talking when we take you out on walks, you like to chime in. You always have lots to say! Some of your favorite words right now (and Tamsie's too), besides the old standbys "agoo" and "agoo-ah," are "uh-wuh," "ah-ah-ah-ah" and "ooga." A lot of random times it sounds like you and your sister are saying "Mamama" and "Dadadada," but we try not to get too excited because we know you don't have any idea. When we go out in public, people can always tell that you're slightly smaller than your sister, and they always want to touch you... which your Mom is NOT a fan of!
Impromptu hand-holding moment!
Both of you girls are noticing each other more and more these days. It's sweet to watch you look at each other, smile, and talk to each other. I hope and pray that you will become best friends as you get older and more aware of each other!
"Is this any way to celebrate my half-birthday? In the doctor's office??"
 These days you're wearing size 0-3 months and size 3 month clothing. You are still wearing size 2 diapers. At your six-month check-up, Tamsie weighed 11 lbs 13 oz, and Evie weighed 11 lbs 2.5 oz - but we have a baby scale at home and usually the gap is not nearly as large. Every day it fluctuates, and some days you actually weigh the exact same! But usually Tamsie is just a little bit bigger. Even though they sound itty-bitty, the doctor is very pleased with these numbers, because your bodies are working hard to catch up!
"The doctor's office on my 6-month birthday?! Seriously! I thought that's what Chuck-E-Cheese was for!"
You both received an excellent report at your six-month check-up, along with permission to sleep as long as you'd like to at night! Unfortunately, after being such good sleepers for so long, you are now both waking up most nights. We think it's probably because of teething or allergies.
My crazy active girls tore this paper to shreds during their time at the doctor's office. I took this picture of T not long after we arrived, and she had already gotten the party started.
Since you're both exclusively on formula right now due to all of your milk protein and soy allergies, you no longer have to take vitamins. We have also taken you off the Prevacid since your GI test revealed no reflux. We're hoping your tummies mature quickly so you can get back on milk sooner or later. However, you are currently taking Benadryl for all your stuffiness and runniness! You do not like the taste of that at all!
She's a total Daddy's girl: Chris was trying to see whether Evie's first tooth had broken through (it hasn't), and he got her to smile!
You are in the less-than-fifth percentile for height and length, but you are in the 10th-25th percentile for head circumference! Y'all are some smart girls with those big heads! :)
Tamsie was practicing sitting up while she waited for the doctor.
 You love music and start kicking your legs and throwing your arms around when you hear it.
Evie's own hands weren't enough to satisfy her need to chew, so she latched onto mine as well!
Both girls were loving playing with my ring.
T grabbed my hand with both of hers.
I promise I was not this vein-y pre-babies!
She's got her Daddy's smile!
 You love being read to. We recently bought you Pat the Bunny, which is your new favorite! You love all the little activities it gets you to do.
Yes, Evie is in fact the little sister: she's younger and she weighs a little less.
 You are bouncing yourselves in your bouncy seats these days. Tamsie, you get to kicking your left leg so that you'll bounce really fast!
This is the way E falls asleep, falls asleep, falls asleep...
 You are very alert and focused. When Cliff stayed with us and he would be crying down the hall, both of you would twist around in your seats to try and figure out what was going on. You are always trying to figure out where sounds are coming from.
Evie playing with her bee toy with both hands... this is a new thing!
 Speaking of sounds, you are also making new sounds all the time! You are testing out those sweet baby voices of yours.
Bite it, girl!
 You're still sleeping in your Nap Nannies, but we're hoping to transition you to the cribs soon. You're also sleeping with your arms unswaddled.
This is no laughing matter, folks.
 You both wake up happy most mornings, talking and practicing new sounds. Evie, you like to get up with your Dad in the morning, but Tamsie, you like to sleep as late as you can... just like your mama!
It's hard work!
  You really like going on rides and walks.
Tamsie and her tired mama. That is not pink eye shadow - I had just gotten my eyebrows arched! Just wanted to set the record straight.
You are both trying to crawl as best as you can during tummy time, and you're enjoying tummy time more and more. Your necks are getting so strong, and you can hold your heads straight up when you're on your bellies!
Out for Saturday errands. Tamsie looks like she's trying to play an invisible flugelhorn.
 A lot of times you interrupt feed times to smile, giggle, and talk.

I tried to get Tamsie to fit into one of my old baby dresses from 1983. Alas. I waited too late! It's way too small!
 You girls are loved more than I can even describe.
I can't wait to see what this next month has in store for you!

Love always,

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