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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Happy 11-Month Birthday, T and E!!! (and an update on Tamsie)

Evie's wearing pink, and Tamsie's sporting the yellow headband. NICU Bear is being smooshed in the middle. 
Dear Tamsie and Evangelyn,

Sweet girls, how I love you. I can't find a way to say it that doesn't sound terribly cliche (and I don't know how to make accent marks work on that word in Blogger), but I do love you more every day. This month has been a fun one for sure, and we've loved watching you grow and grow! Here are some highlights since our last update:

You always play right next to each other. Here, Tamsie is holding on to Evie's back.
* Both of you are standing more. Like ALL THE TIME. It's so fun to watch you crawl around and stand up as you explore absolutely everything around you!
Now to get back out again...

* You've started playing with toys you can push around... except you don't really push them yet. Instead, you flip them over and play with the wheels! Maybe once we move into the new house, you'll have more open space to figure out how they really work.
Evie's holding a paci that Tamsie would love to get her hands on.
* You're eating some finger foods now! YAY!! I was really scared about introducing them at first, with your history of bottle issues. The first few times we gave you puffs, both of you coughed and looked a little miserable, which only scared me more. But after a little practice, y'all are getting really good at taking those suckers down, along with banana bites and watermelon bites! (And to anyone who comes across this blog and thinks I am one behind-the-times mama for just now introducing finger foods - they really should only be eating like 8-month olds, since that's where their little tummies are developmentally. Our speech pathologist is very proud of their progress! :)
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Tamsie demonstrates how to eat a puff. Both girls make ridiculously serious faces while eating their puffs.
* Y'all are our little sleeping champions these days. You typically sleep at least 10 hours at night, and sometimes you take a little nap after you've been up for an hour or so in the morning. You take a late morning nap and a late afternoon nap, and sometimes you drift off for a short early evening nap.
Blurriness is everywhere, because they're in constant motion!
* You're interacting with each other more than ever, which is super fun to watch! You make each other laugh on a regular basis.
They love talking into their stacking cups and making funny sounds. In fact, this is apparently MUCH more interesting than actually stacking them up... don't think I've ever seen them use these things for their actual intended purpose!
* Both of you have started waving and clapping your hands. I love it! When we get in your play yard to play with you, both of you climb all over us.
11-month birthday pictures are harder than EVER to come by... even with the help of Chris and my mom!
* You're just getting around better. You're crawling more gracefully and standing impressively well. Sometimes you hang on to things and practice a little bit of walking. It's all happening so fast!
"Mom! She's touching meeeeee!" It's already starting.
* Both of you are sitting up in your little tub for bathtime, and we're finally able to bathe both of you at once. You love splashing each other! I'm pretty sure we'll be trying you in the big tub at the new house! :)
Tamsie is making the famous turtle face. It looks like she's trying to be Evie's personal stylist here.
* We still have you on Prevacid for now, because you're doing so well at bottle time that we don't want to change anything and potentially jinx the good thing we have going. We've tried sippy cups, but you don't quite get the point just yet. You prefer to be held and fed the good old-fashioned bottle way for now.
And the teething continues.
So does the styling.
* Tamsie - here's the update on your kidney situation for now. Your grandma and I took you to the kidney doctor on Friday, and Evie, you came along for moral support. We really like your new doctor, Tams. She told us she is NOT surgery-happy, and she's very conservative when it comes to things like that. HOWEVER, she thinks there's a greater than 50% chance you'll have to have some kind of surgery. That's about all she could say, though, until she has more tests run on you to get a better idea of where you are right now. She said she really wants to watch you like a hawk. We're praying that you've improved and that you won't need surgery! You're going in for an ultrasound on the 28th, and then you'll be heading to LeBonheur sometime soon for some more extensive tests. In the meantime, you'll still be taking Bactrim every night to prevent UTIs. (The doctor was VERY happy you've never had a UTI before!) We're just hoping and praying to get good news out of all of this! It will tear your mama up watching you undergo all these painful tests, but you are one tough cookie, as you've shown us time and again. And God's gotten you this far and brought you through a LOT to get you to where you are now, so we just have to trust Him with this. It's not easy, but He's good.

Posing. At this point, Tamsie was trying earnestly to go overboard, and Chris was getting increasingly concerned about the safety level of this photography session... so it was cut short. No individual pictures this time. Girls, I promise your 1-year pictures will be MUCH better, because Melissa will be taking them!

* OH! Stats! I almost forgot. Both of you are somewhere under 16 lbs but bigger than 15.5. You've eaten more than EVER before this month, but you've gained the least you've ever gained in a month... probably because you're on the move nonstop. You're both wearing 6-9 months in clothes and size 3 in diapers. You're petite!
Tamsie lets her Grandma feed her at her Great-Grandma's house...
... while Evie allows Grandpa to feed her...

... and she rewards him for his patience with a nice grab o' the beard.

Tamsie smiling up at her Great-Grandma
These are about all the updates for now. I'll leave you with some little playtime videos!
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AND here's a link to a beautiful letter I found that made me think of you. I wish I had written it, but it still applies. I want you to read it someday.

I love you so much and can't WAIT to celebrate your first birthday in less than a month!!!!!
Love,
Mom

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