Friday, January 28, 2011


N is going to be getting that goobery left eye fixed in the near future.  He's been struggling with a blocked tear duct since the day he was born.  Poor fella has been on so many eye drops/ointments in 20 months I've lost count. 

We had a goober-free summer and fall and thought he'd outgrown it, that the tear duct had opened up as he grew, but since the boys came down with a wicked (!!) cold at Thanksgiving, it's back. 

Yesterday was N's second visit to the ophthalmologist, where we were told that while the procedure is not necessary, as in, he could live without it, but we'll be dealing with it every winter because it's partially blocked.  Meaning, as long as the weather is good and he's healthy, the duct can handle the drainage, but as soon as the air dries up, the eye waters more, and he catches colds, it'll back up, then get irritated, goobery, red, and then infected.  And the church nursery worker will continue to tell you that he's got Pink Eye and give you that look that says how dare you drop off your highly contagious kid in here and infect everyone. Even though he can't.

I'm waiting on the scheduling center to call me and set it up.  Everyone says it's a simple, easy procedure, and that putting him "under" is not a problem, that he'll bounce back in a day and not feel any pain, but still....

(Sigh) I know we will all be better for it on the other side, though.  So here goes.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Way Back Wednesday

It says, "May 30, 2005"

In two years, my sister and brother-in-law will have a baby girl on this day.  
In four years, Hubs and I will have 5 day old twin boys on this day.  
In six years, sister and brother-in-law will have a one-month old baby girl on this day. 

I like to picture all those kids sitting at the table together in the foreground, smearing BBQ sauce everywhere and throwing fries at each other.  I'd to think that somehow, they were all there that day, anxious to join us.

Monday, January 24, 2011


We were working on "please" tonight. Because this afternoon, they were snatching the Nilla wafers out of my hand and running away! 

When they came back for another, I told them to be polite and say "please."

Much whining ensued.  "Cooo-kie?  Coook-kie? Coook-ie?  Waaaahhhh!"  Then running away. 

This went on for just a minute until M said, "Pweeze?" like it was all his idea. I handed him the cookie, and said, "thank you, Mommy.  You're welcome." just reinforce that that's how the communication works. He smiled and bit the cookie, running away to play. 

N watched the exchange, then....

lunged at me, trying to grab the cookie out of my hand, then pitched himself onto the floor with a big, "WAAAHHHHH!" 

He's a little dramatic and I did not fall for this. 

An hour or so later, when they saw me sneak a Nilla wafer, maybe or maybe not on purpose, we tried it again.

"Say please," I prompted.

"Pweeeeeeze?" M asked.  I handed him the cookie and he scampered away.  Then I prompted N, who'd again seen how it works.

Once more, I was attacked by a frantic toddler, desperate for a Nilla wafer.  No cookie.  He was quite upset with me.

Half an hour later, one of them spotted the Nilla wafer box on the counter and immediately M said, "Cookie? Pweze? Cookie? Pweze?"  Seriously, who can resist THAT?

N must have been pretty desperate because, after a little prompting, he said, "Pee."

That was the sweetest cookie in the box.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Extreme Cold and Frostbite is Likely

It was -29 F in our town at 7:30am this morning.  Then I found this today, posted on my MVMOM website, after I'd taken the boys to school today because only a hurricane will keep us home - and a fever, but you know.  Anyway, I think this explains my general snarky attitude today:

·30 is chilly and generally
·15 to 30 is cold
·0 to 15 is very cold
·-20 to 0 is bitter cold with
significant risk of frostbite
·-20 to -60 is extreme
cold and frostbite is likely

·-60 is frigid and exposed
skin will freeze in 1 minute

content copied from: 

Child Care Weather Chart

P.S. The napping boys and delicious chocolate treat my Handsome Hubby brought me from his business trip is helping the snarkiness right now.  As well as spewing it all on you, dear readers.  I'm feeling much better.  Thank you.

P.P.S. Does that mean that "frigid" is worse than "extreme cold"?  Does that make sense to you?  Perhaps another visit to is in order.

Update: I'm feeling much better since I first posted this because my favorite deals site, Pocket Your Dollars, has a bunch of freebies listed today!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Hermit Thursday

We're staying in today.  Do you know that tonight's forecast is 20 below?  Yeah, so I'm cooking and having a grand time at that.  On the menu tonight for us and our new-baby friends, who will be receiving half the double batch: Italian Peasant Soup and Hermits!  Love you, sis, and wish I could serve this to you on your birthday today.  Happy Birthday.

Italian Peasant Soup
from Quick Cooking Magazine 2003

1 lb. Italian sausage links, casings removed and cut into 1" slices
2 med. onions chopped
6 garlic cloves, chopped
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1" cubes
2 15 oz cans cannellini or white kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 14.5 oz cans chicken broth
2 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
6 cups fresh spinach leaves, chopped
Shredded parmesan cheese, optional

In a Dutch oven or soup kettle, cook sausage over medium heat until no longer pink, drain. Add onions and garlic, saute until tender.  Add chicken; cook and stir until no longer pink.  Stir in the beans, broth, tomatoes, basil and oregano.  Cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes.  Add the spinach and heat until just wilted.  Serve with parmesan cheese if desired.  Yield: 11 servings (2 3/4 quarts). 

And make sure to have yummy crusty bread to go with it.

For dessert, hermits! I found this hermit recipe on, when I was calling myself a hermit two weeks ago.

Okay, that pic is not my hermits, but it is an honest representation of what mine look like, even though I was tempted to choose the best looking hermit cookie picture from google images. 

It was my first go at hermits and they are delicious!  Try them yourself. My helpers are up now.  Maybe they'll wash all those dishes?  Not likely.  But they will stuff the dishwasher full of Matchbox cars if I'm not watching.


 Perhaps I was bragging a bit too much in my last post about having the best kids in the world?  Sorry.  I don't mean to rub it in.  But I do.  Have the best kids in the world, I mean. For instance, they are becoming BIG helpers:

While skyping with "Gamma" two nights ago, N slid his little hand between the cupboard and the fridge, grabbed the broom, and "swept" my kitchen and living room.  he was swiping it all over the carpet, cupboards, toys, etc., and whacking me and M in the heads with it.  Did I take it away?  Nope.  I wanted to talk to my mom, and taking the broom away would have resulted in one of his toddler temper tantrums (oh, that's its own post!).  I just waited till he was done, then placed the broom behind the "fence" in our living room that "protects" our computer and entertainment center.  (Seriously classy decorating skills.  I'm thinking of consulting.)

I have two munchkins permanently glued to my legs when I'm in the kitchen.  Or underfoot.  Or in the oven drawer.  Or in the fridge, if I can't shut it fast enough.  So when it's dinnertime and they're hungry, they're there.  Here's another confession: I don't cook when Hubs is traveling (shocking, right?!) and we eat Standard Toddler Fare.  Still, they want to help with even that.   Here they are, "helping" me "cook";

They're totally frozen!  They loved this part.  Awhile back, I let them put muffin liners in the pan, which was also exceedingly fun.

Letting my twins help is like doing the bunny hop all day: two steps forward, one step back. Or, more like one step forward two steps back? But we're having fun and attaining a modicum of cleanliness and health (see how it says 100% all natural ingredients!?) so it's all good!

Come on over for dinner.  You can lick your own nuggets.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Project Family Date Night

Call it desperation, a New Year's Resolution, or crazy, but we've decided that it's something that must be done.  In some ways, we've been hermits for 19 months (yes, we fly, but mostly to the grandparents' homes).  Make that two years - I stopped going out much once I reached whale-ific proportions.  Don't get me wrong: I love being home, and for the most part, I love cooking (it's the cleaning up I hate).  In fact, we've also decided that the only way to see our friends again is to cook for them at home on Sunday afternoons while the boys sleep.  So it's not like we're socialites or anything.

But we've gotta get outta here.  The house is small, the weather bad (-6 as I type), the toys overwhelming, and the kitchen must close down once in  while!  Besides, we do need to socialize them - like, in a place that's not babyproofed.

So we did again. 

We're calling it Project Family Date Night.  You know, like a sequel to that time in our lives when we actually had "Date Night?" 

We try to find a family-friendly activity and restaurant and have fun together, which in itself is no small potatoes when you need to entertain two curious and wily toddlers!

Activity 1: Edinborough Park. It's an indoor playground up near the cities that comes highly recommended from other parents.   It was fun, but I think it will be much more successful when the boys are bigger and the crowds are thinner.  Here are a couple pics, then we'll move on to the REAL fun:

Restaurant:California Pizza Kitchen!  It's no secret that we love pizza, but this joint brings back fond memories for us because we've eaten at several of its locations all over the world!  San Fransisco and Singapore spring to mind this morning.

And miracle of miracles!  I'm not sure what happened, but the fellas were ANGELS!  As in, the box of crayons fascinated them for 15 entire minutes! 
Tic tac toe, anyone?

Put 'em in, take 'em out, repeat 100 times.
Then...they ate their entire meal!  Without throwing it on the floor!  Without throwing the not-plastic plates on the floor!  Woo hoo!  You cannot imagine how wonderful this was.

Hubs and I actually got to eat our meals, much more peacefully than our previous date night with the guys.  Oh, how I love thee, chicken lettuce wraps!

As we cleaned up the fellas (a just a few errant noodles), we patted ourselves on the backs for a successful meal and told them, "You give us hope for the future, fellas," when a family entered the restaurant with a set of 5-ish year-old twin boys.

"Look!  Twins!  Just like you were!" the mom cried.  "Mom and Dad are sure brave!"  We smiled up at them, said hello, and they kept going.

"Hope for the future," Hubs said.  "Did you notice there was a third?" he asked, since the dad was carrying a little toddler.

"I noticed," I said. 

I'm hopeful, but not that hopeful.  Not yet, anyway.  I need a few more successful Project Family Date Nights.  No... a LOT more.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Beary Cute Hat

Awe, shucks, ladies.  That's awfully sweet of you.

Stacie, thanks. You're such a great bloggy friend!

Mom, can you print out that picture and show Grandma next time you see her? 

Bev, I found it on Crochet Mama's blog:

Car Wash Terror!

You need to get your car washed in Minnesota.  Even when it's 8 degrees with a windchill of -9.  If for no other reason than keeping your new coat clean while trying to buckle your twins into their carseats inside the little cozy garage in which you park your Jeep and minivan.  Which is, of course, why I chose to go through the carwash today.  With the boys. 

Big mistake.

They've been through the carwash before.  Just last week, in fact.  But something was different today (I still don't know what, though). 

Oh, and just when you think you have your kids figured out - N was "brave" this weekend but quiet, M was "talkative" but fearful of climbing a climbing a play structure - they change!

N FREAKED.  He started whimpering when I turned into the drive, crying when I paid for the carwash, sobbing while we waited our turn to enter, and hollering "Ah Duh! Ah Duh!" (All Done! All Done!) when the water began spraying the windshield. 

M was very concerned and cried a little, but I think it was empathy for his brother more than anything. 

I tried animal crackers, I tried singing, I tried explaining that the van was getting a bath, narrating as it was wiped with a "washcloth," its hair "rinsed," and "dried."  Nothing helped.

So I sat back, listened to the hollering and thought, "this will make a great blog post," and "hmm...maybe I'll take them through the car wash when they're naughty...that's multitasking, isn't it?"

Monday, January 17, 2011

Little Funnies

"I'll have Nutella and blueberry preserves on wheat, please"
  • M's vocabulary is exploding and he'll talk to anyone who will listen...or is in audible range.  He'll repeat anything he hears, but I was floored this morning when he came down the stairs in Hubs' arms and said, "Good Morning, Mama."  WHAT?!
  •  N's vocabulary is also increasing but he'll only talk to me, Hubs, and "bro-bro," which I didn't realize until my friend A, who babysat on Saturday night, said that N refused to say a single word!  He did, however, ask for treats by placing a hand on her knee and giving her the eyes.  Then, he didn't say anything when we had company yesterday until they backed out the drive. "Bye, bye" he called.  I assume this is just a stage, though, and he'll speak up for himself soon enough.
  • M likes to bring me my slippers if he can find them.  I call him my little puppy.
  • N has figured out how to open doors.  I bought doorknob covers this weekend.  As if my house doesn't look cool enough, these are over the top stylish!
  • They are terrifying me by WALKING up and down the stairs, no matter how I try to coax them to "go down on your belly."  As a result, we tentatively removed a gate at the bottom of the stairs because if they're going to do it, at least they can land on the carpet and not crash into the gate!
  • Yesterday M was talking about "Gama," so we Skyped with both of the grandmas before bed.  While we were talking with them, he found the "cama," so I helped M take this pic of Uncle D, "SheeShee," and "Gama." 
  •  M ate scrambled eggs this morning!  I've been told you have to introduce some foods up to 17 times before a kid will eat it, and I'm pretty sure this is accurate. Maybe he needed 19 months to digest the eggs I ate while I was pregnant with gestational diabetes?  Two eggs/day X two months = 180 eggs?  Maybe he was just sick of them until now.
  • N was helping me fold laundry when he took a dishtowel out of the basket then carried it into the kitchen and PUT IT AWAY in the correct drawer without any prompting!  A also told me that when she told the boys to clean up their toys Saturday, they filled up the basket then ran to the bottom of the stairs, ready to go up for night night. I seriously have the best kids ever!
  • I'm kind of proud of myself, too.  Since I took up crocheting two months ago, I've improved to the point that I think I can actually make items as gifts for other people (as in, other than my immediate family who will always be kind no matter what it looks like because they're just that cool).  I tried my hand at baby bear hats (for Hubs' former boss whose baby boy is in the NICU, and for my cousin K who is due on Valentine's Day - check out her blog here.)  Hope I didn't ruin the surprise!  I think they turned out well!  And the afghan behind the bears is my first for my future niece, due in April.  Not too shabby, huh?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Beauty Shop Boys

Unexpectedly, I had to give N a bath in middle of our playdate!  (I'll spare him the indignity and I'll spare your mind's eye of the mess.)  Let's just say I would have been woefully unprepared for this surprise had it happened anywhere but home, so thank goodness we were here and my guest was E, a heaven-sent friend who ran upstairs to draw the bath for us.

When N and I returned to the playground of my living room, E cried, "Oh, my gosh!  Look at those curls!  You should put some mousse in there!"

Thank goodness for Auntie L, who purchases a multitude of hair product when she visits and leaves it in my bathroom (because she can't take it in her carry on)!  I dashed upstairs and found some lavender-scented Herbal Essence just for curls.  Heavens only knows how long it's been hiding up there. 

Here are the results of our beauty shop photo shoot:


I love you, Foofa.

My favorite pic of the day!

BFF's forever!

Like Richard Simmons!
You'll notice M kept touching his spikes, like, what's this crazy gunk?  And one more bonus pic: the four fellas climbing up the stairs to go night-night:
So cute!
They're so fast!  And it was so cute to see four little diapered-sweatpanted-behinds racing up the stairs! Even funnier: the guys smelled like Auntie L's hair all night!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Parents Eat Free

Because my son is paying!
Just kidding!  We are beginning to think like parents with two kids these days.  When they were smaller, it was no big deal to drive a half hour up to our favorite pizza place in the cities because they would nap in their car seats, or at most, gnaw on a crust.

But you have any idea how much kids' meals cost?  And what the liklihood of my children eating them are?  And should I buy one or two, since M ate 3 of the 4 nuggets in the last McD's kids' meal, but neither ate even one the time before? 

So last night, as Hubs and I hemmed and hawwed about going out to eat (we really wanted  to, but...should we?), I typed into the search engine, "kids eat free sunday" and found this website:  You enter your state, then choose a city from the drop-down menu, then choose a day of the week and VOILA!  It tells you which restaurants have free kids' meals!  We called to double check the offer was still valid and were out the door to a local sports bar/grill place. 

Hubs and I had visited this place once before, years ago.  It's one of those neighborhood-type places that we would likely eat at frequently if were in our neighborhood.  But it was the perfect solution to last night's problem (and hey, if that's our biggest problem, we are doing really well!): free kids' meals, football game on TV, friendly staff, and decent food.  Hooray!  This might be our new favorite place!

Despite warnings from people (you know who you are) that the worst time to take kids out to eat is between 18-24 months of age (they're 19 mo.), we think last night's foray was pretty successful.  That means no fits, the boys ate something (mini corndogs and rice krispy treats were a hit, but cheeseburger and fries were not), there was minimal food-dropping, and the parents ate a meal (a sandwich and salad - quickly, of course, but still, a meal).  Woo hoo! 

Since we were there well before the normal dinner hour, it was funny to see people's reactions to us as they entered.  An elderly group asked for a different table when first directed to a nearby booth, but a family with two school-aged girls sat nearby smiling, watching the boys, and saying things like, "I remember putting those mats on the table!"  The staff said "Hi!" and "Bye!" in response to M's greeting, and retrieved planes and sippy cups kindly.  I guess a place advertising Kids Eat Free better be prepared for some kids.

So maybe, just maybe, we'll do this again. 
Watin' for the food, dude

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Hello Hermit


a person who has withdrawn to a solitary place for a life of religious seclusion.
any person living in seclusion; recluse.
Zoology . an animal of solitary habits.
Ornithology . any of numerous hummingbirds of the genera Glaucis  and Phaethornis,  having curved bills and dull-colored rather than iridescent plumage.
a spiced molasses cookie often containing raisins or nuts.

I used the word "hermit" last night to describe myself to a friend since I did not leave the house at all for 72 hours this week, possibly a record since the birth of my sons.  I spent yesterday playing Megabloks, wiping noses, making chili and cornbread and baking snickerdoodles for Hubs' co-workers today.  I was thinking, it's not so bad being a hermit if the boys are happy (they are, for the most part, because of the plethora of new Christmas toys).  Then I was thinking, hmm, what is the actual definition of hermit?  So I looked it up - on, of course, because I don't even own a dictionary, a horrendous admission for an English teacher.  So, am I a hermit?

1. No.  While I profess a deep faith in Jesus Christ, I believe He said to GO and preach the Good News, not to live your faith in seclusion.

2. No.  I live in a busy suburb in an 8-unit townhome with a handsome hubs and two crazy toddlers.  Not my definition of seclusion.

3. No.  I eat animals.  My children act like animals and at times I feel like a zoo exhibit, but no.
4. No. I eat birds, too.  I have curves, but that's about it.  No plumage, iridescent or otherwise.
5. Yes.  I think this is the hermit I meant.  A spicy, nutty cookie.  That would be correct.  I am a hermit.

Now, to find myself a good hermit recipe...

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Catch Up 2 (New Year's Eve)

Hubs and I have celebrated New Year's together in several different locations: Hawaii, The Bahamas, Texas, Michigan, Minnesota, but never AT HOME.  There's something different about us this year that made us decide to stay "in" for the holiday...oh, say, two adventurous toddlers?

Our now-defunct "Young Marrieds" small group still gathers occasionally, particularly on New Year's Eve, to get together.  This year's gathering was much the same as previous years', except we were there with Lewis and Clark, the hostess was 9 months pregnant, and there were two tiny infants in the mix. 
N stuck close to me at first...

Look, stuff to touch!

I didn't do it.
It was nice to actually see  our old friends, despite my conversation sounding much like:
  • Your baby is getting so big!  I can't believe we haven't seen him (her)
  • Son, don't touch that!
  • We should get together again soon.
  • Hubs, please take all the picture frames and candles off her endtable
  • Excuse me (exit me as I go to close all the bedroom and bathroom doors in the hall)
  • Here, sons, have a snack and juice
  • What were you saying? Oh, yeah, the baby...
  • No, no, pick up your cereal snack, don't leave them all over our hostess' nice rug
  • Excuse me (exit me again as I go to christen our hostess' baby-changing table with a poopy diaper)
  • Is there a bag in here? No?  (Enter me as I carry a poopy diaper through the living room and into the kitchen garbage.)
  • Where's the other one?  Is he poopy too?  No? Good.
  • Where were we again?  Oh, yes, your baby.  She's so sweet.
  • Vroom, vroom!  I drive a car across the rug to pick up cereal pieces. 
  • Hubs, it's 6:00...
  • Okay, time to go! 
  • (Everyone) What? You're leaving!? So soon?  Aren't you having dinner with us?
  • No, enjoy your meal in peace.  Happy New Year, everyone!
The fellas were sound asleep by 7:30, leaving Hubs and I to enjoy our first ever New Year's Eve Lobster Boil!  What fun!  Having these delicious crustaceans to look forward to and spending a quiet evening with my handsome hubby made this New Year's Eve my best ever!  We started off 2011 on the right foot, that's for feet were in bed at 11:05 because we watched the ball drop live in NY and turned out the lights. 
New Year's Eve just might be my New Favorite Holiday.

Catch Up 1

Good morning, friends.  I greet each of you in the name of a steaming hot cuppa joe and two sleeping babies.  I'm painfully aware of how my blog has been lacking in recent weeks and my hope is to catch you up to speed on the fellas.

They are, how shall I say this?  BUSY!  Hubs and I wonder if other 19 month olds are this busy, if perhaps everything is exaggerated because there are two of them, or if we have a couple of wild men on our hands?  We are seriously considering starting them in gymnastics to release their pent up energy, but it appears we can't start them until they are two!

Both the guys were down for the count with an ear infection over the holiday "break," (haha, what mom gets a break, right?).  I try to post pics that depict how cute and brilliant I am our sons are, but I have to show you this one, above.  That's me and N (escaping, per usual) and M on Christmas morning.  Poor M is burning up with a fever of 101 and looked that way most of the day.  We dosed him up in Tylenol all day and took him to Urgent Care first thing the next morning.  (Did you notice they're eating Fruit Loops out of their snack traps?  They are decidedly NOT into special holiday foods!) The good news is that N is finished and M has just two more days of amoxicillin and they are both bouncing around like normal now!   

I mentioned we had a double birthday waterpark party, but I have no pics because my sisters and I have NO SWIMSUIT PHOTOGRAPHY agreement!  Taking the kiddos down the slides and splashing with them in kiddieland was a riot!  We did, however, have presents and cupcakes for the birthday girls afterward where everyone was fully dressed.
Happy 3.5!

I think "vacancy" adds a nice touch.

Happy 3 years!
Those are my only two nieces, who turned 3 - my next niece is due April 20, by the way!  They are modeling their gifts, hats made by Marigold Baby.

I hear one little guy "talking" upstairs.  I'm going to get him out while he's in a happy mood.  It makes the day go so much better!  I'll be busy for awhile, so I'm just going to post as is.  Perhaps I can put up a few more at naptime. 

Monday, January 3, 2011

Happy New Year, MOMs!

Happy New Year 2011, everyone!  I thought I'd start the year out with a laugh - here's a special nod to my mothers of multiples friends.  Bet you can relate to this video!