Thursday, December 11, 2008

Reindeer and the Nativity

At Moms' Group last weekend, Sarah hosted a craft night, and we made adorable reindeer shirts using our kids' hand and footprints. Here's the girls sporting their new shirts.


Lydia (L) / Jenna (R)


Lydia


Jenna

Here's a fun video of the girls playing with a non-breakable nativity set that they love. This is also the first week that they've put words together, so we're calling them their first sentences. It's really long...sorry. Just click here

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What was lost is found!

Our van is back! Wednesday afternoon the police called and told us they found our van parked on the side of the road about one mile from our house. It was in perfect shape, and the keys were even inside the van waiting for us! Our stroller, pack and plays, car seats, and some other small things were still in it--wow! The only things that are missing are our iPod, iPod cable, and AJ's sunglasses. We're so thankful to have our van back and to have most of the things that were inside. It's a huge blessing to not deal with the hassle of replacing our things right now as wait for our baby boy. Thanks for praying.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Thanksgiving


We enjoyed our week at home over Thanksgiving even though we were sad to not spend the holiday with family. We ate our Thanksgiving meal with the Dunns, and the girls had their first chance to sit at the "kids' table" with Joe and Leila. What fun!

Then, Saturday night we forgot to move our vehicles back into the garage. Both vehicles were unlocked, and the keys were in the van. Well, Sunday morning we were about to leave for church, and we discovered that our van had been stolen. It was a stressful day, but God has been faithful to take care of all our needs. A generous couple at church is letting us borrow their suburban, and insurance will cover our loss well, whether or not the car is found. It's definitely a hassle, but we're fine and realize much worse things could happen.

I'm 37 weeks along now and doing great. We're crossing more things off our list, and I'm hoping this baby comes a little early so that he's here before Christmas. He is staying head down, and we're praying I go into labor naturally so that my VBAC attempt is more likely successful. We'll keep you posted! :)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

35 Weeks

I'm now 35 weeks pregnant, and everything is going great!

We had our last sonogram yesterday, and this baby boy is head down. We're especially thankful since we're attempting a natural delivery after the c-section with the girls. It was fun to watch him moving around, but he kept his hand in front of his face the entire time. I'm getting excited to hold him and see him in real life.

When I looked at this picture, I told AJ that my belly looks pointy. I think I was just used to a very round belly with room for a baby on each side. We're so glad for a smooth pregnancy so far and are getting more prepared every day to add another little one to our family.


Thursday, November 13, 2008

Ready Moms

We've been sick with the puke bug this week, but thankfully it was very fast. We seem to all be okay now, as long as AJ doesn't catch it at the end.




Nice hair, courtesy of Daddy! Jenna loves to smile for the camera

I almost didn't post this video, because these pajamas aren't too cute. I decided that was pretty vain and that this video is too fun to keep to myself. If you can't tell, they knock and say their name when we ask who it is. At the beginning, Jenna knows I'm filming and is busy smiling for the camera. :)

video

For several years before I was a mom, AJ called me (and some of my friends--you know who you are, Angie) "ready moms." We liked kids, cooking, trying to help people in mom-ish ways. Well, it looks like my girls are in training for a similar title. Here's some pictures to prove it.

Rinsing the dishes after Daddy washed them. Lydia (pink) Jenna (white)



Helping Mommy make salad and loving on Daddy (another good Mom skill)


Helping bake cookies for Julie--Lydia (purple) / Jenna (pink)


Jenna catches her baby off the slide. Both girls swinging their babies.

For anyone who noticed, yes, the girls are wearing the wrong color today. Lydia almost always wears more pink, but it just didn't work out today. Jenna had grown out of her dress that went with her sister's, so we picked a cute outfit that won't be warm enough soon. Sorry for the confusion!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Costumes


Lydia (L) / Jenna (R)


Jenna the Monkey and Lydia the Bunny

Last week we went to a fall festival at MCA (where AJ teaches), and the girls got to dress up for the night. Unfortunately, I didn't bring back up batteries for the camera, so all the pictures and videos are from our fun around the house being a bunny and monkey. The only thing I forgot at home was to draw on their faces. We especially enjoyed their first attempts at jumping! Here's a video: youtube.com/ajandmegan

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Big Girl Bed

Today was the big day for Jenna and Lydia to move out of their cribs and begin sharing a full sized bed. I wanted the first day to be one when Daddy was home. I thought I might need some back up help. Well, the girls did great! We took the bed off the frame, put the bed in a corner, then put guards on the other sides. The goal was that they would stay in bed and hopefully sleep a bit in their first nap together. They played for the first hour and 15 minutes and seemed to love being together. They stayed in bed and didn't even fight over stuffed animals or books. Finally things got quiet, and this is what we found.



They ended up actually sleeping for a little less than two hours, and AJ and I got lots accomplished in our three hours (except that we couldn't stop peeking on them because they were so cute!) This is what I found after our three productive hours and their first try at sharing a big girl bed. Apparently they don't think they need such a big bed. Have I ever mentioned how much I love having twin girls?





Tonight they fell right to sleep! Hooray for a smooth transition to the big girl bed!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Busy October and Daddy Moments

We've had a very fun and busy October. The weekend following our Arkansas trip, the girls and I rode the bus to Waco with AJ's cross country team to the state meet. We had a great time with the team, and sweet Julie Brown helped me take care of the girls since AJ was busy with the team.





The next weekend AJ went to Ft. Davis to a planetarium with his astronomy class. They had a good time together, and my parents came to visit and kept us girls company. As always, they helped us a ton and played hard with the girls. The girls love their grandpa and grandma and can even say their names now! My parents were so busy taking pictures that I didn't take time to get any of this trip. Maybe next time.

I'm now 32 weeks pregnant and doing well. I'm less comfortable especially in the constant getting up and sitting down of taking care of toddlers, but I'm thankful Baby Boy and I are staying healthy. This week I contemplated starting potty training the girls, but I feel much relief at the decision to wait until the girls are 2. Thanks for the great advice, Aunt Connie (she's owned a day care for so many years that I consider her the expert). The girls are moving to a big girl bed in the next few days, though, so I'll have to post an update on the experiment of them sharing a full sized bed.

I wanted to highlight a couple sweet Daddy moments from this month. Recently AJ was home alone with the girls and gave them a bath (that's getting a little harder for me these days)! He wasn't sure what clothes to put on, but he wanted to be sure they were warm. So...he dressed them in these coats I had sitting out in their room but left the tags on, not knowing if I was planning to return them. They looked so cute, and I couldn't help but laugh.


This is Lydia's current response when we say "smile!"


Jenna kept her hood on to be sure and stay warm

Then last night I got to go for dinner with some friends. Our friend Jenny is stuck at home for 6 months with her newborn who needs to be kept away from anyone who could get him sick, and she was making her first outing with friends while her husband took care of Baby Blane. AJ decided to take the girls on a date while I was gone. They had a great time going to Quizno's and running errands and met me at the door with big smiles on their face and a new word in their vocabulary. They can now say "date! date!" I'm guessing Daddy's trying to make them think the only person they'll ever go on dates with is him. I'm so glad my girls are growing up with such a thoughtful, loving dad who loves to spend time with them!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Arkansas Trip

We spent the last few days in Arkansas visiting family and friends and attending JBU homecoming. AJ had the opportunity to sing in the Cathedral Choir again, and he loved it so much he can't stop talking about it. Our trip was fast moving (like most of ours) but really great.

The first night we stayed with the Wolters (camp friends). Then, we went on to Arkansas to see AJ's family. We spent Thursday evening with AJ's sister's family and parents. We ate pizza and watched Kevin coach a football game. Friday we hung out with Grandma and Poppy (which the girls are great at saying) then went to Fayetteville for an evening with Uncle Ben and Aunt Maggie. Saturday we got to meet Baby Sullivan (Josh and Rosa's one week old little cutie) and see lots of old friends at our 5 Year Reunion. We stayed with Angie and went to church with her then met all of AJ's family in Fort Smith for Alissa's birthday lunch and playing at the park. We stopped on our way back and stayed with Brock (my brother).

The girls did great most of the time, and we left thankful for so many sweet friendships. As you can see from the clothes, I really only did a good job of taking pictures one day of our trip, but here's what I've got!



Jenna (before we left) who loves to wear her bicycle helmet while walking around the house



Perea Family meets Baby Sullivan--the girls loved him!



AJ, his dad, and his brother with Lydia, Jenna, and Brett



Brett is such a sweet cousin and wanted to love on the girls non-stop!



Eating Alissa's birthday cake



Lydia likes to eat cake with Poppy


Aunt Maggie and Uncle Ben share their cake with Jenna


Walking in the park with Grandma


Cheesy smiles with Uncle Brock

Friday, September 26, 2008

Bubbles

A few updates from the week:

PREGNANCY: I passed my diabetes test this week but not without a hiccup. The first time I took it I went to pre-register at the hospital while I waited the hour for the gross, sugary drink to get into my blood sugar. The meeting went a little long, which I didn't anticipate to be a problem. Well, it was. You have to check your blood sugar within five minutes of an hour, and I was late. So I got to go back with the girls on Wednesday morning and do it again.

FEVERS: The girls have each had a day this week when they've been running a fever. Really they've had no other symptoms besides being whiny, and thankfully the fevers only lasted a day for each of them. This was the first time Jenna's had a fever since her seizure, so it made us a little nervous trying to keep it down and then putting her to bed hoping her fever wouldn't spike and cause a seizure.

BUBBLES: This morning we blew bubbles outside, and although we're starting to get the hang of blowing, we still have a ways to go. That's pretty clear in these pictures which show the girls "blowing"!


Jenna (L) / Lydia (R)

Friday, September 19, 2008

I love my sister!

Jenna and Lydia seem to have a unique desire to take care of each other and be together. They do fight over toys but not as often as I expected. Whenever one gets a toy or drink, usually they ask for one for their sister. They also love to feed each other, tickle each other, hug and kiss each other, and sit next to each other. In fact, Jenna wears us out with the number of times she asks about her sister when they're apart. A new development this week: Lydia sits down then pats the spot next to her and says, "Sissy!" Also this week we were walking through a parking lot, and AJ and I each had the hand of one of the girls. We asked if they wanted to hold their sister's hand, and sure enough our family was a long chain walking hand-in-hand through the parking lot. Too bad I don't have a picture of that one! It's so fun to watch them loving on each other!


Hug!


Kiss!



Sitting on the step together



New songs, words, and animal sounds


video

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Thankful again

Good news! Jenna's MRI came back normal! Now we will move on since there's no findable cause for her seizure. We were told this was the best news we could get, so we're very thankful. Thanks for your prayers and concern.

Here's a picture from today of the girls doing one of their new-found favorite things: crawling up on the couch and looking at books or a picture album of babies (themselves). Jenna's on the left and Lydia's on the right.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Girly girls and the end of a tradition

Over the last few months, AJ and I have been amazed at the love Jenna and Lydia have for girl things. Their current favorite words are baby and flower, and you can usually find them playing with babies along with headbands used as bracelets, a shopping cart, swing, or purse. We really don't think it was intentional on our part; they just seem to have been made with a desire to mother and look pretty.

Well, today I was painting my toenails while they played, and the girls came to observe. Many of you know that Jenna's toenails have been painted ever since we came home from the hospital. It's my primary method to prove that I've never switched them! Many people (especially kids) use Jenna's toenail polish to identify her. I'm sorry to say that will no longer work.

You see, Lydia just kept watching me then eventually took off her shoes and saying "toes, toes" while pointing at her's. I got the message. She wanted her toenails painted. It was a hard decision, but I gave in and told her to sit still and I'd paint her toes. Wow did she sit still! Her toenails look better than Jenna's ever have because she was so enthralled by the process. So it's official. Both of my identical twin girls have painted toenails. I don't think it will help, but Jenna's are pink and Lydia's are red. Oh my, what have I begun?!


Swinging babies--usually two at once


Jenna with her purse and shopping cart after I asked her to smile


Happy brithday, Will! We loved your birthday party!


Jenna, Leila, Taylor, and Lydia eating ice at Will's party


Thanks for coming for Labor Day Weekend, Grandpa and Grandma! We love you!

Jenna has her MRI (which she has to be sedated for) on Monday morning. Please be praying for a good report and a smooth process. If everything is clear, we are done with tests as a result of her seizure in May. Yea!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Midwest Vacation


We had a wonderful time on our midwest vacation earlier this month. We saw lots of dear friends, enjoyed the cool weather, and squeezed in lots of fun outings. The girls were such troopers, and it was fun to watch them observe and explore new things. We flew in and out of Chicago and went to Wisconsin and Minnesota in between. We saw the Friscos, Reimers, Deweys, Fielders, and Scharfs and enjoyed our time to catch up. We got to experience an arboretum, planetarium, aquarium, a field museum, the Hancock building, cute Door County villages, a bike ride, picnics with beautiful views, a cheese factory, a Twins game, a children's museum, and a zoo. Our time was full and fun!

Here's a couple funny stories about traveling with two little girls and lots of stuff. On our flight from Dallas to Chicago we ended up on different flights (long story, mostly about us being cheapskates and taking a headache for a good deal). So...my flight (with Jenna) landed about three hours after AJ and Lydia arrived in Chicago. Everything went fine until I had to add a carseat and a large suitcase to my already large load of Jenna, a small suitcase, a diaper bag, and my purse. I broke the rule about leaving bags unattended and eventually got us and our things to a set of chairs where we would spend the next 2 1/2 hours. It was especially interesting when I convinced myself a man was eying us so he could take my stuff when I turned my back to grab Jenna. Later he offered to watch our stuff if I needed to use the restroom or anything and assured me he was a minister and very trustworthy. He was. Jenna needed changed, and all my bags were there when I returned.

Then, in Chicago we used public transportation to travel downtown and had a hilarious moment. Somehow our stop snuck up on us, and we were rushing to get both girls, the stroller, diaper bag, and backpack off the train in time. Well, I got off holding both girls, and the doors closed behind me leaving AJ on the train with all our stuff. I felt panicked at first, but mostly it was just funny, especially since he got back to us in 15 minutes. Thank goodness.

There are too many great pictures to post them all, so click here: Picasa to see more.


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Jenna's EEG and results

Yesterday we drove to Lubbock to take Jenna to see a pediatric neurologist. He was great, so helpful, listened carefully, then told us he recommended continuing with more tests. He wanted an EEG that day in Lubbock and an MRI later back in Midland. Traci (my sweet friend from my teaching days at DeZavala Elementary), who lives in Lubbock now, graciously watched Lydia for a large chunk of the day during the appointment then the unexpected EEG--thanks again Traci!

The EEG was a little traumatic for Jenna, but it went quite well. It's notable that it was NOT sleep deprived (keep a person up for 8-12 hours before the test) like we were expecting before seeing this doctor. First they had to put all the probes on her head, which took at least 30 minutes. She fussed through some of it, but it was far from the screaming we are used to when doctors mess with her. Then they needed 2 hours to video her while the EEG recorded. Thankfully, she fell asleep about ten minutes in and was allowed to sleep for one hour for the test. Once we woke her up, she laid very still for close to 25 minutes then ate, read books, played with toys before she realized all that was connected to her and started crying. It wasn't bad, though, because she only had 15 minutes left, and I was still able to hold her and sit with her while she stayed connected. AJ, Jenna, and I were all worn out by the end, but we were so thankful to have it over with! Here's our poor little thing all hooked up.



We were able to hear the results already today! The EEG was normal, which is a great indication that Jenna does not have epilepsy and that hopefully the seizure was a strange, one-time event. We're so grateful and relieved.

Today I heard that news right after playing for a funeral. I couldn't help but think what it would have been like to lose our sweet Jenna. Today I'm again overwhelmed with thanks to God that Lydia cried for no apparent reason that night and that we found Jenna before her aspirating took her life. It's sweet--when we left Lydia at Traci's house yesterday, Jenna kept asking about her sister and pointing to her carseat. I hope they always share that special bond.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Walking videos

I posted three new videos if anyone is interested. Lydia does a puzzle, and each of the girls take some steps. To see them, click here: youtube.com/ajandmegan.

Monday, July 21, 2008

It's a...


BOY!

I'm back home after almost two weeks visiting family and friends in Colorado, Tulsa, and Arkansas. We had a great time seeing so many fun people, and Ben and Maggie's wedding was a big highlight of our time. We arrived home last night, and I had a doctor's appointment today. I wasn't scheduled to have a sonogram, but I asked if Dr. Doke would do one for us since we'll be out of town during weeks 20 and 21 when he usually does those sonograms. He agreed, so we're thrilled to announce that in December we'll be welcoming a baby boy! Hopefully I can post the 3-D pictures sometime soon! More pictures and updates coming soon as well.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Big girls!

Although the girls aren't interested in doing any more walking on their own, they are doing some new big girl things. Last weekend we dropped their morning nap, and they've made the transition quite well! They also love to feed "babies" a bottle, push a shopping cart, ride horses, and sit at a table to play music and read books. With all this extra wake time, we have lots of fun time to figure out new toys!


Jenna pushing her baby in a shopping cart



Jenna loves that horse!



Lydia sits at the table to play the piano


I love this sequence of pictures. I promise none of them were posed or prompted. I'll let Lydia narrate for you.

"Wow, look at that girl in my book!"



"Mom, who is that? She looks like my sister!"



"I guess I'll just give her a kiss."