Wednesday, July 30, 2008

It really did win a blue ribbon!

Delainey's photo of Max standing at the door really did win first place in the photo contest! I am so proud of her, and very excited for her as well! She didn't get a blue ribbon, but she did receive a nice book to add scrapbook pages. It also came with some digital scrapbooking software.

There were 27 others who entered photos, and each enterant was able to enter up to three photos. The photographer who taught the class and ran the contest told her that one of her other photos would have won second if it hadn't been by the same person. Pretty exciting stuff, there... imagine what she can do when I get a new, super cool camera, and she gets to use the old one all the time! (Aren't I funny?)

Job well done, Delainey!

Here's the other photo...

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Photo Wins Blue Ribbon in My Book!

Delainey's been taking photos trying to set up some good shots for a photo contest. Now, mind you, she has never had any photography lessons except an hour slide show/discussion at the local library. And, she doesn't have a very good camera with which to work. But she is determined to come up with the perfect photo. Well, this one is my favorite so far...

Saturday, July 12, 2008

behind in my blogging

I am behind in what I would like to blog. I have at least a dozen posts that I have started but not finished. And, now, the letter 'p' and the '.' keys are sticking on my computer. That is so annoying when you are trying to type quickly.

Anyway, I would like to give a weekend update or two... but it will actually just be updating items of interest randomly, and I am not making any promises as to how far along I'll get.

My mom and her twin sister (Aunt Karen) were known for their singing before they were married and were asked to sing at various local events and hotspots, you know, church, the local opry, the town's pioneer days, and the like.

Well, the act only got a little bigger when they got married. My dad and my uncle Tom joined in the fun and they continued to get a few gigs, and apparently they still do... they were asked to sing a little ditty about Jack and Diane, no just kidding. They were asked to sing a song, though, at a family reunion for my mom's mom's side of the family a couple weeks ago. (Got that?)

[Side bar: My dad played the drums for that same local opry for many years and eventually became a comedian as well. Buckshot. That became his stage name. I have some great memories of watching my dad on stage. They even had their own spot on the local TV station. So, if we didn't go to the opry we could sometimes watch him on TV! How cool is that when you're five? Or 35?]

On with the show. Mom and Karen sang, and Dad played guitar. Tom would've played guitar as well, but he had to be out of town and couldn't join us. But they did decide to have the grandkids sing with them. Six of Mom and Dad's 11 grandchildren sang - the twins just weren't up to singing in public yet, and Tacy & Clayson didn't make it this year. Karen & Tom didn't have any grandkids yet... their first is due any minute... literally, any minute or maybe he's already here! I haven't heard yet. But I am so happy for my Aunt Karen, and TJ & Laura, too. Can't forget them.

My Dad & Mom-in-law gave us a swing set they don't use anymore (they probably never did, really. It was probably mostly the kids that used it. Ha! I'm on a roll tonight!). My kids are so thrilled. You would think we have World's of Fun or something in our backyard now. I am thrilled, too. I am so glad they have something to do in our own backyard.

On the fourth of July, we went to my parents for dinner. Mom made her famous brisket that is sooo yummy. There was corn on the cob, mmmm, and delicious desserts, or belicious as Max says. We shot off our own fireworks - our kids and Troy's. Then we all watched the display put on by the city. This year is the first year Kynzie stayed outside the whole time, and she didn't even cover her ears/eyes the whole time. Max stayed glued to my lap the entire time, thumb in mouth, cloth in hand. It was past his bedtime, but he didn't care much for the noise anyway.

Tonight, we went to a potluck dinner at a local church where Kynzie has been attending Vacation Bible School all week. This is the first time she has done something like that. She loved 'Bible school' and was disappointed that today was the last day. The church had a dinner, and the kids sang some songs they had worked on all week. Kynzie, my social butterfly, was more interested in all the people than whether she had the right hand motions going at the right time. It was super cute since she's only four.

Delainey had a brief tennis lesson this week and a photography lesson of sorts at the library. So, now she is trying to take some photos to enter in the photo contest. I wish our camera would work out better for her, but she's trying. I'll try to post some of her photos later this week.

Speaking of photos, I will post some in this post later. The SD card is in the other room where the twins are sleeping and I don't want to go rummaging right now. So, maybe check back again a little later if you want to see some pics.

Friday, July 11, 2008

The Most Precious Moments

As Dennis finished nursing this evening, he started to work at figuring out what his hand is and what it might do for him. He focused on his hand's movement back and forth in front of his face. He concentrated quite intensely for awhile. Then, he began to look at the bright flowers on my shirt. Finally, his eyes caught mine, and he connected, locked on. And, he returned my smile.

I love those moments. I love to watch my children learning and experiencing new things. And those smiles are so precious; like jewels.

I wonder if that is a little glimpse of how God feels to be our Father. He enjoys watching us, His creation... watching us learn and experience life, His abundant life for us. And, then, when we connect with Him, I bet that is most precious to Him as well... when we express our love to Him, our gratitude toward Him, our smiles.

What parent doesn't take great joy in an "I love you, Daddy" from their children?

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Beautiful Poem for those who have experienced miscarriage

Most of our friends and family probably know that I have experienced miscarriages. I have started a post about the loss and some ways I found to deal with it, but I haven't finished it yet. I found this poem tonight, and I wanted to post the link to it here. It is titled 'Heaven's Nursery' by Rebekah Milne.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Tuesday's Top Ten Things to do with Two-Month-Old Twins

1) Type one-handed while nursing (how do you think I have time to post!)

2) Have a goal for (the babies') sleeping, eating and wake-time and slowly work toward it. My goal is eat/wake/sleep in a three-hour rotation. It may sound familiar to those of you who have read Babywise or Along the Infant Way. Lots of controversy surrounds some of the ideas within, but as with anything, take from it what will best benefit you, your babies, and your family. And, we have found it benefits us in many ways... maybe another post another time there.

3) Keep them in the same crib... at least in our experience it is easier, and as of two plus months of age, they don't wake each other when crying.

4) Make the individual time you have with each count, but also do as many things as you can two at a time! Nursing is the biggest and best two-at-a-time-task for me! But, you may not want to go that route. Maybe you would rather enjoy bonding with one at a time. Then you could double up at bath time maybe...

5) Keep a "While I Am Thinking About It" Notebook. This can be a little, spiral notepad or a more elaborate 3-ring binder with various subjects (home life, school, calendar, to do, menu/grocery, etc.) divided with tabs. But have it handy, that is the key. I think of things constantly, and then promptly forget them.

6) Make sure you give your husband opportunities to bond with the babies, too! My terrific husband has always enjoyed having a hand, or two, in the children's care. This time is no different. He does the bathing of the babies. He also talks with them, holds them, changes them, burps them, and more when he is home.

7) Give the babies toys or colorful objects on which to focus and to practice coordinating muscle movement and hand-eye coordination. Dennis is much better at grabbing something he sees. (But Daniel can roll!) It is so sweet to see them growing and changing.

8) Talk to them face to face. Watch them try to 'talk' back to you.

9) My husband said I should add that you should work hard to keep them awake in the evening. Try to not let them nap past six o'clock or so. It is often much easier said than done, but it is good to have goals.

10) Make sure you are allowing them to fall asleep in the crib. I think this is about the time (2-3 months) that they become more aware of sleep aids, which means they can easily become more used to them. Sleep aids such as rocking them to sleep and then carefully and gently putting baby down in the crib, hoping not to wake the angel. It becomes even more important with two babies, I think, than with one... it may seem like a sacrifice at first, but it will pay off for you and your sleep!

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Tuesday's Top Ten Twin Stuff List... Especially for a Small Living Space

I don't think you should buy two of everything right away. I will say that we used two bouncy seats from week one... well, maybe week two, I can't remember.

I really like the bouncy seats we have, but if I had thought about it a little more, I might have chosen a more portable style. Or at least something that folds up and stores out of the way.

1) Take Along Swings - maybe just one to start. You never know whether both babies will like swing time or not, and you may not need to have both in a swing at the same time. I have found that both of mine enjoy swinging, and I enjoy having them both in the swing at the same time.

2) Nursing pillow - I would like to have the inflatable pillow as well for travel. I discussed the nursing pillow in a previous post.

3) Bouncy seats - fold up if you can find them. I had a couple of older bouncy seats with my older children that folded for storage and for portability. These are two wonderful qualities (easy storage and easy portability) to find in any baby equipment for twins.

4) floor gym - collapsible. These are helpful, but not completely necessary. They do take up a lot of space if you don't find the kind that folds on itself and stays closed with snaps or Velcro.

5) Double stroller of some sort. We have a Graco Duoglider, and I love the feature that allows you to snap the carseats in and out. I have also seen the stroller that is just the frame for holding the carseats.

6) Port-a-crib or pack-n-play (somewhere to put them, especially if you have other small children)

7) Good breast pump - high quality and portability (can you plug an adaptor into the car? Believe me, it comes in handy!)

8) Portable changing table/station or several stations throughout the house - I have created a portable changing station on a cart. Maybe I will take pics of it and add them later.

9) A back pack diaper bag - I love mine, but it isn't as big as some others. You may want something a little roomier? Also, think about how easy it will be to clean and whether it will stand up on its own.

10) An incredible setup for nursing - including Hands-free phone/books/computer whatever you need to make nursing work for the long-haul. Read this for more info on Nursing Set-up (and other useful twin information from a real mom of twins).