Thursday, September 24, 2015

2nd Pregnancy, 3rd Baby

There's something strange and curious about having pregnancy number two equal baby number three.  From doctor's visits with a new nurse ("So this is your second baby." "Third." "But you've only had one other pregnancy?"  "Twins." *blank look* "Ohhhh...") to that first ultrasound ("Is this your first?"  "No, third."  Holy crap that sounds like a lot of kids, it sounds like I know what I'm doing and I really have no idea) to articles and blog posts that seem to pop up at least once a week about how to balance (singular) toddler with a newborn and adding a second child to the family after parenting just one for oh so long!


In fact, it was and still is kind of hard to relate to other people's posts about their pregnancies since, y'know, the usual is to add (just!) one baby at a time.  We've always had to balance two.  That's just the reality of're thrown to the wolves and expected to swim.  (I...may be mixing metaphors here.  Whatever. Seems accurate.)  While seemingly everyone else I know is concerned with adding baby #2 to the mix and OMG how to I manage TWO KIDS?!?  Well...I've just always had to deal with that.  In most ways, I don't really worry about how adding another baby to the mix will effect Caden and Brooklyn. They've always had to deal with another little person around and having my attention divided between them.  Come to think of it, I don't really worry how adding a baby to the mix will effect them at all.  I'm more concerned with keeping them occupied while I'm nursing without fighting for the eleventeenth time over the same toy (which we probably have two of, anyway) and that I'll manage to get them fed on a somewhat regular schedule with something resembling actual, real food.

Not to diminish anyone (i.e. everyone else) who is adding a baby to the chaos that is already having a toddler.  If I only had a Caden or a Brooklyn, I'd be worrying about all the same things.  And in a lot of ways, I can relate so much more this time to articles about baby's development and whatnot, since there is only one baby in there, and my timeline as far as actual due date, doctor's appiontments, etc. actually matches what it's "supposed" to.  It was a shocker to me last pregnancy when I opened What to Expect When You're Expecting (aka the pregnancy Bible) and found no more than three pages on twins/multiples pregnancy.  (I recommend this book if you're looking for something multiples-specific.)  Or when we went to the labor and delivery class and approached the seasoned nurse who was instructing with several of our twin-specific questions and got mostly answers of "I'm not sure".  (How reassuring!).  (It went fine.)  Now when I open WTEWYE (Which, second pregnancy, so-HA!  Not that often.) it actually more or less all seems relevant, which is...nice.

Second pregnancy with only one baby after twin pregnancy BONUS: while everyone else is complaining about showing much sooner and gaining weight faster in their subsequent pregnancies, there is NO WAY I'm showing as much as I was at 17 weeks last time.  Forget second baby/placenta/amniotic sac takes up WAY LESS room than TWO babies/placentas/amniotic sacs.  I'm pretty sure I was trying on maternity pants at the 7-8 week mark last time, and I held off until the 12-14 week point this time.  Whoo-hoo!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Eighteen Months

So, actually Caden and Brooklyn turned 19 months today.  While I wrote this post a month ago, I really wanted to wait to post it up until I got our 18-month photos back.  So here's a "month" post that's even HEAVIER on the photos than usual.  Enjoy!

Photo credit to our wonderful photographer, for one last session before we leave Madison.

Eat.  Three meals a day (7:30 am, 1:00ish pm, 5 pm) and 2 snacks (9:30/10 am and 3 pm).  I think Caden surpassed Brooklyn in the picky department this month!  Really, though, they are both good eaters, and most food most days gets devoured.  Like many toddlers, they are both suspicious of new foods, unless of course it's on mommy and daddy's plate, and then they want to eat ALL of it (with a "grown up" fork).  Also like many toddlers, they'll go through phases, or days where it seems they don't eat anything, and then turn around the next day and eat everything I have in the house, and then some.  

Sleep.  Bedtime at 7 pm, sleep for 11-12 hours.  Nap at 11 am for 1 1/2-2 1/2 hours.  Caden still wakes up a bit in the middle of the night, but we've found that the key is ignoring him, and he puts himself back to sleep pretty quickly.  He absolutely wails his little heart out for a few minutes, and then (usually) settles back down.  (Typically, Brooklyn sleeps right through this.)  I hate hearing him cry, but it sure beats having him in our bed for at least the next couple of hours.  A co-sleeper I am not, at least with a squirmy, wriggly, mouth-breather like Caden.  They are much more awake during the day, like their sleep has truly refreshed them. I especially notice this in the car, where they are much less likely to fall asleep even if it's close to nap or bedtime.

Play.  More words!  Just a couple of weeks ago, we received an evaluation in the mail for their 18-month doctor appointment, and one of the questions was if they had eight or more words besides "mama" and "dada".  At the time we got the evaluation, it was questionable...maybe more like 5-7 words each?  But in the two weeks before their appointment, they blew right past the 8 word threshold!  They must each have at least 10-12 words now, plus some random signs, sounds, and animal noises.  

Caden got sick this month, throwing up and then having some particularly nasty diapers every day for a week (like...10-12 times a day.  Gross.).  I felt so bad because he was absolutely NOT himself, but it stretched out for so many days that I couldn't even remember what his normal self WAS anymore.  He was whiney, clingy, wanting something different every 3.9 seconds, and generally, just a pain to take care of.  Luckily he is better now, and is in the BEST of Caden moods every day.  Smiling, laughing, running around, and testing limits (though it's hard to get too mad at him for throwing things when he thinks it's so dang funny).  

Brooklyn was also sick, though it affected her mood a lot less.  I think she kind of got ignored in taking care of wonder she's better at playing by herself!  She mimics words and everyday actions constantly.  If she finds a stray (clean) diaper, she'll lay on her back, legs in the air, waving the diaper around like she's saying, "change me!".  She copies me cleaning with towels or paper towels, and has really started with "pretend" play: washing her hands or cooking in her toy kitchen and hugging/rocking her baby dolls.

Their independence is exploding, and it's a relief to take them to the park now and not have to be by their side every single second.  They are often content to play in the sand by themselves, and so confident with going up and down the stairs that I can watch them from afar.  They are generally bigger and stronger now, and can crawl up and down from things with such ease that even a month ago were a challenge.  Tyson and I agree that 12-17 months or so were rough months in terms of the constant care it seemed they needed, but 18 months is now our favorite age!  They are fun, interactive, good-natured, and naturally curious about everything.  




Friday, September 18, 2015

So Your Power Goes Out at Dinnertime

  1. Power goes out.  All the lights, TV, oven, washer, microwave, power off on a cloudy evening, leaving you in a nearly dark and now eerily quiet room with two small toddlers.
  2. Power flickers back on.  For about 1.2 seconds.
  3. Power goes out again.
  4. Power flickers back on.  For about .83 seconds.
  5. Power goes out and stays out.  Toddlers panic.
  6. You panic.
  7. It's 10 minutes to dinnertime.
  8. Look at oven, where dinner is sitting, half-cooked.
  9. I know!  I'll just put it in the microwave!
  10. Oh, wait...
  11. Um...
  12. Toddlers cling to you for dear life.
  13. I guess we'll go...out?
  14. Change a diaper with one child wrapped around your upper body like a small monkey.
  15. Frantically pack diaper bag in the mostly-darkness.
  16. Try to find three pairs of matching shoes.
  17. Open door to hallway.  Hallway is also (duh) pitch dark.
  18. Hallway is scary.  22-lb. toddlers both need to be carried.
  19. Get toddlers to car, in car, and to restaurant.
  20. Restaurant specializes in burgers.  Order burger.
  21. When burger arrives, wonder why on EARTH you ordered a burger when you've had a weird aversion this entire pregnancy to ground beef in any shape or form, you IDIOT.  Take two small bites and nearly vomit in disgust.
  22. Eat mostly french fries.  
  23. Leave restaurant in the pouring rain.  Toddlers are encased in stroller, but by the time two kids and a stroller are packed into the van, you are a wet mess.
  24. Hair is totally a puffy-humidity-frizz-ball.  You realize you have a lot else going on at the moment but come ON.
  25. Get home.  Lights, TV, washer, are all brightly, noisily, gloriously back on.  (But not the oven, because you are an ADULT and realized it should probably be turned off before you left, in case it came back on while you were gone, and you're not really sure why but it seems like the right thing to do so blah blah REASONS.)  Sigh in relief.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Post Weekend

Thank the Lord for weekends.

And for fall.

And for fresh-baked apple cider donuts sprinkled with sugar.

(Not pictured, because we ate scarfed them all.)





(Hello, Mr. Bear.)