Monday, November 19, 2012

Happy 13-Month Birthday, T&E!!!

*Hey, friends! Don't forget to enter the giveaway... I'll be drawing a winner sometime tomorrow or Wednesday - whenever time permits! :) *

"Sure, we're letting you take our picture - but that doesn't mean we're happy about it."
Dear Tamsie and Evangelyn,
I promise you're not typically as ticked off as these pictures make you look. It was totally my fault for waiting til late in the day to get around to taking pictures of you, but your OCD mother just had to have pictures from your actual 13-month birthday - even if your afternoon nap was a total flop and it was very much inconvenient for you to take the time to pose for them! You're actually happy little girls most of the time!
"And we're not promising to keep our headbands on, either."
So you're 13 months. In response to the question we're most frequently asked about you (in addition to "are they twins?" "how old are they?" "how do you tell them apart?" etc.), "are they walking?" No, you're not - not fully, anyway. Of course you were early, so you really shouldn't be walking full-out yet anyway. However, you're constantly walking and hanging onto things or pushing things around. This past week, both of you took your first step or two before crashing down. Evangelyn, you were the first to take this monumental step - sorry, couldn't resist! I know I'm embarrassing you already! ;)
"Don't even think about taking either one of our NICU bears away from us. They're ours."
So you may not yet be walking, but you are certainly doing a lot of talking. Sometimes both of you will get in this mode where you repeat pretty much anything we say to you when we're pointing things out to you and telling you their names. On your own, you can properly identify a duck (although sometimes you call all pacis "duck"), a bear, a ball, a door. You say "upstairs," which sounds a lot like "upstehs," when we take you upstairs. (In addition to talking about them, you also love climbing up the stairs.) You LOVE books, and some of your current favorites are Baby Faces and Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? When we read Baby Faces to you, BOTH of you like to say the next word before I get to it! With Brown Bear, you try to growl like the brown bear, and you say "duck" when we get to the page with the yellow duck! Another favorite is Ten Little Ladybugs. Both of you smile great big smiles when we get to the last page, and then you fight over who gets to play with the book! :) Tamsie, your personal favorite book right now is Hop on Pop, which you refer to as "Hop Pop" -- you love saying "up pup" and "uh oh" when they fall off the wall. Of course, both of you sing a little duet whenever we get to the page with the thing that can sing!
They are one tough-looking, sleepy set. (What Evie's doing here means she is just about to crash. And I'm pretty sure she did when I finally left her alone!)
 A fun thing we've started over the past couple of weeks is baby signs. Your speech pathologist taught several of them to me, and you've already picked up on the sign for jump -- which is fitting, since both of you love jumping all the time. You hang onto the sides of your cribs and jump like a couple of monkeys, you hang onto your gate and jump, you jump when we hold you. And of course the jumping is accompanied by lots of silly giggles! Y'all are too much fun.
"Put the camera down NOW, Mom."
Both of you are getting much better at staying in the nursery at church without completely breaking down when we leave. Your teachers tell us you're having lots of fun. Last time, one of them told us that Tamsie, you're definitely the social one. In fact, you have a certain friend whom you find each week to play with, and you two have lots of fun together! This reaffirms what I've always thought about you two: Tamsie's the extravert, and Evie's the introvert.
Tamsie still rocks the "ooo" face on a regular basis. You can see two of their favorite books in this picture!
You LOVE playing with each other - so much that it's sometimes hard to get you to stop playing and go to sleep at naptime these days (like right now, actually). I hear you giggling over the monitor, and when I go in to see what's so funny, both of you are jumping up and down and making silly noises in your cribs. Knowing how much you need your rest, sometimes I get frustrated when this happens -- and then I have to step back and realize just how precious it is that you're already friends. Actually, this is how I'm finding it to be with so many of the frustrations that come along with parenting: they're only frustrations until you realize that they're actually blessings. Pretty amazing.
"Give me that camera, Mom."
Both of you are just about 17 lbs apiece right now. The other night I managed to carry both of you around for a minute, but it wasn't easy! That's why I usually have to stick with one at a time. You're in size 6-9 month clothes, although you're about 28" long - so you're kind of getting to be too long for 6-9 month clothes but not nearly big enough around for 12 month clothes. In fact, some of your 9 month pants may be getting a little short, but they still fall off your waist - I have to keep pulling them up for you! You're in size 3 diapers during the day and 4 at night.
It seems a baby (or two) is always trying to climb on me. 
You're expanding your dining horizons these days, but Tamsie, you're a little bit picky. You refuse to eat eggs, for example. When we give you scrambled eggs, you try to drop them off the side of your tray very delicately when you think we're not looking. If we sprinkle cheese on top, you'll pick out the cheese and eat that, but leave the eggs untouched. Evie, you're our adventurous eater. Whether you've had it a hundred times or never seen it before in your life, you'll pretty much eat anything. But this makes sense, because in general, we've found you tend to be our more compliant child, while Tamsie has the stronger will!
Looking through last year's calendar and came across this. The 7th looks particularly special because that is the day we were finally able to bring the girls home from the hospital!!!! Two other reasons this calendar shot is interesting: it's weird to see the events that had been on the calendar for a while, like the party at church Wednesday night, that I clearly had to skip... and you can also see the way that doctor's appointments (for the girls and for me) were dominating our lives in that crazy era. That was a special time, but I can't tell you how glad I am that we're a year removed from it now. I get all thankful and weepy just thinking about it all.
You still attract all kinds of attention whenever we're out, much of it sweet and cute, and some of it obnoxious. I'm trying to get Chris to write a post about that particular aspect of being a twin parent. I'm way nicer than he is about it - ha! If someone says something odd to us, I tend to smile and humor them, while Chris either ignores them or answers them but looks at them like they're crazy. :) He's such a good protective daddy!
Out on the town (OK, in a dressing room) with my shopping buddies

Once recently, Chris was playing with them while I was trying things on. Whenever I'd emerge from the dressing room with a different outfit on, he had them clapping for me. So silly!

This exemplifies why I can't throw out last year's calendar: too many memories! :) (I know I put this on facebook, but I also have readers who aren't on facebook - hello, Uncle Alex! :) - so here it is!)
 This past month you've both been pretty sickly - no fever but coughing at night but acting mostly fine and normal during the day. It's been hard knowing whether to get you out or keep you home. Yesterday, we took you to the doctor to settle the matter once and for all and to figure out what's been going on, since you don't seem to be getting worse but also don't seem to be getting better - and we found out you're fine. You've just been picking up colds, probably because we kept you so sheltered for so long. But it's a necessary part of childhood, and you'll be OK - and in fact, you're only contagious the first three days of contracting one of them! This information is life-changing! :) Here are some pictures from our visit yesterday while we were waiting:
While we wait, I entertain myself by taking pictures of Chris playing with the girls - in this case, Tamsie. 

The girls had been destroying the paper on the table and getting into all sorts of mischief, so we wound up holding them. When they got too heavy, we put them in their carriers in front of the mirror. We forgot most of their toys in the car, and they threw the rest on the floor - so at this point they were playing with the paper they had torn all kinds of up! I have to suspend my inner germaphobe at times like this, for my own sanity!


And seriousness!


I was just getting ready to take some pictures of Chris and Evie when the doctor came in, so this is all I got!
Girls, every day with you just gets better and better. You're so much fun, and I love watching your adorable little personalities unfold! Each night, your dad and I pray that you grow up to love Jesus, brighten the lives of all who come into contact with you, and continue to grow healthy and strong. We can't wait to watch the plans God has for you as they unfold! :) WE LOVE YOU!!!!!!


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