Monday, November 26, 2012

Adventures in Unconsciousness

On the night of Thanksgiving, we got home around 7 pm.  The kids had not yet had their baths and we were running a bit behind on our evening routine.  Vivienne climbed up into the learning tower (kind of like a high step stool with a railing), and I was singing a song to her and tickling her.  She doubled over giggling, and she fell through the railing onto the hard tile floor of the kitchen. 

Vivienne immediately did the breath-holding thing that toddlers do right before they let out a loud cry (usually when they're frightened or hurt suddenly).  I immediately picked her up and carried her to the couch.  Meanwhile, her eyes rolled back in her head and she passed out.  She was sitting on the couch like a rag doll with her arms and legs splayed.  She was only unconscious for about a second (literally about 1 second), and then she woke up and started screaming.  It scared me to death, and I cried along with her.  She was inconsolable and skipped her bath because she just wanted to snuggle and suck her thumb.  Luckily, before we put them to bed, she had gotten back to her old self and was talking, counting, etc.

During this time, I was debating as to whether or not we needed to take her to the ER.  Of course, we're not particularly cautious parents (well, I guess I'm not?), so we didn't even call the doctor.  The next day, she seemed fine as well.  We had Evelyn's 4-month visit that next day, so I asked the pediatrician whether we should have taken her to the hospital.  She said that because she fell less than 3 feet and she was walking normally and not speaking Mandarin, we were ok.

Here's to hoping she never hits her head and starts speaking another language!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

For Thanksgiving, we went to Grandma's house.  She pulled out all the stops, including Oreo turkeys (so cute!).

Our centerpieces for the meal were the little pine cone turkeys that the kids made - one for each of them.

Viv's Turkey

Miles' Turkey

But before the meal, we spent some time outside, climbing the fence, picking the holly berries, enjoying the sunshine and throwing the frisbee for Mindy.

Dinner was delicious - turkey, dressing, gravy, fruit salad, sweet potatoes, mac 'n cheese (the kids' favorite), green beans, broccoli and cranberry sauce... not to mention the cheesecake, carrot cake and pumpkin pie.  We left their house feeling very, very full.

After dinner and naps, we decorated Grandma and Grandad's tree.  I think this was the first time that Miles and Vivienne could really participate in the decorating.  They really had a blast.

Thanks, Mom and Dad, for a wonderful Thanksgiving!  We're thankful for having such amazing grandparents right down the street!

Evelyn is 4 Months!

Our baby girl is 1/3 of a year old already.  Evelyn had her monthly birthday just a few days ago, and we took her to the pediatrician yesterday for her 4-month appointment.  She is growing strong and weighing in at 15 lbs.  It always surprises me to see her in outfits that Vivienne wore when she was much older.  Evelyn is basically ahead a size, and Vivienne was always behind a size.  Here are Evie's stats:

  • Height:  25.50 in (89%)
  • Weight: 15 lb (68%)
  • HC: 16.25 (71%)

Evelyn's little personality certainly is blossoming.  She smiles and coos and laughs the sweetest baby laugh.  She loves to kick her legs and make her bouncy seat rock.  She likes to smile at friends and strangers alike.

Evelyn has had quite a few developments this month.  She has learned to hold her hands together.  She can easily hold onto small objects that we give her.  She doesn't yet pass them from one hand to another.   She very clearly sees things that are very far away - such a contrast to the newborn that couldn't see past about 12 inches.

She still eats about every 3 hours or so.  At night, she usually only eats once.  But over the past week, she was eating about 3 times per night.  It was making me really tired during the day, but now we seem to be back to our once-nightly rendezvous.

Her hair is really starting to grow back in.  I'm very glad to see that.  I'm looking forward to hopefully braiding it someday if she will let me.  She has this extra long strip around the bottom of her head.  That should develop into a nice mullet after a few months.

People often comment about what a beautiful complexion she has.  She has olive skin, like her great grandmother (my maternal grandmother).

Happy birthday, baby girl!

Little Man

My kids have never had their hair cut at a salon.  Vivienne has basically never had her hair cut at all (except for a few bang trims early on).  I have cut Miles' hair for quite some time now. 

I started cutting Jason's hair a few years, and I found it to be pretty easy to trim.  He hasn't been to a real barber or salon in years.  But Miles has beautiful, shiny, straight, thick hair - a very different texture from his dad's hair.  I really love his hair.  I don't always do a great cut, but it has never been too embarrassingly awful.

Let's just say this last cut was a bit rough.

Ok, so it was REALLY rough.

Well, with a little help from Elmo and his sister by his side, I gave Miles his first short haircut.

Looking more like his handsome daddy every day.  Love you, buddy.

Jessi's Birthday Cake

For my mom's birthday, we made her a 4-layer chocolate cake from scratch.  Our neighbor, Jessi, also had a recent birthday, so I decided to try to make another one.  They both came out great.  And I think you could probably say that Vivienne also enjoyed the experience.

Monday, November 19, 2012

2-Year-Old Teething

I'm just going to be honest here.  About a week ago, we brushed the kids' teeth for the first time in about a month.  (Hey, they lose these teeth anyway, right?  No big deal.)  Well, when I was doing this, I noticed that Miles had some big molars coming in on the bottom.  I have no idea whether they're coming in on the top, too.

Anyway, I guess that explains some of the fussiness and the extreme drooling that has been happening around here.

Roll, Roll, Roll Your Boat

Last night, we confirmed that Evelyn is indeed rolling from tummy to back.  We're pretty sure that she has done this for a few weeks now, but we weren't sure whether we were really seeing it.  I know that's probably hard to imagine, but, believe me, with 2 two-year-olds around here, it's hard to remember my own name half the time.

I just didn't want to miss documenting this development.  And her little head is getting fuzzier every day - the hair is growing back!  Whoohooo!!!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Improvements in English and Letters and Counting

Miles and Vivienne are starting to speak very well.  Their sentences are becoming much more properly formed these days.  They say things like,"I want to dump it out," and "I need a new diaper."  Vivienne frequently uses the articles and prepositions and adjectives properly, and Miles does occasionally.  Before this, they would speak more like,"I want dump out" and "I need diaper."  It's fun to see their handle on English improving each week.

They are also getting much better with the alphabet.  They have been able to recite the song for a while now, but I wasn't sure whether they could actually recognize the letters.  We went to Bond Park yesterday, and Miles identified all the letters in the signs and trail markers, only confusing an "R" for a "K."  Vivienne also knows some letters, but she isn't as enthusiastic about pointing them out.  As we were leaving the park, Miles saw a stop sign and said,"S - T - O - P!"  So fun!

The big kids are also getting better with counting.  They can count somewhere up into the teens, but all the teens start to sound the same ("umpteen... ahteen... umpteen...").  They have also gotten a good grasp of the concept of counting actual objects (versus just reciting a string of numbers out loud).  At the Farmer's Market, they were counting pumpkins.  At lunch today, they were counting their strawberries and cantaloupe pieces.

I can't wait for the calculus homework.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

9 Months On, 3 Months Off

Well, losing weight this time was certainly faster than it was with the twins.  This morning, the scale said 154.  I was 155 before I got pregnant.  I would still like to lose a few more pounds to be at a healthier weight, but I'm really happy that the weight came off so quickly this time.  The big change was dropping all the wheat from my diet (and not eating any sweets), and it certainly worked.  I've been able to wear my old jeans for about 3 weeks now.  It's nice not to have spandex around my tummy anymore.  I definitely still have a muffin top, but it's getting smaller with every biscuit that I DO NOT eat.  ;-)

I Love These People

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Primal Diet

Well, Jason and I are on a new diet, and it's definitely working for me.  Right around when Evelyn was born, Jason started eating a paleo diet.  Actually, I think he's technically more "primal" instead of "paleo," because he eats yogurt and cheese (I think strict paleo is no dairy, but then you just don't have a reason to live anymore, do you?).  Jason thinks this is a more healthy way to live for a few reasons - one of them is that your blood sugar stays more constant instead of all these spikes all day.  We also think that modern wheat (dwarf wheat) probably isn't the ideal base for our diets (and it usually is the base for the typical American diet).

I started this diet about 3 weeks ago when we got back from Florida.  I have had very little wheat, though I do have tiny cheats every now then (and by "cheat", I mean a bite of quiche with some crust on it or a few bites of the kids leftover oatmeal).  I have dramatically cut down my sugar intake, though I do put sugar in my morning coffee.

Before I started this diet, I would eat oatmeal for breakfast, PB&J (or whatever the kids had left of their sandwiches) for lunch and then spaghetti or cereal or something like that for dinner.  Basically, I was eating all processed carbs all day.  Now, I have scrambled eggs for breakfast with a little havarti cheese or bacon or sausage (replaced my cup of milk with a glass of water), a huge spinach salad with raw carrots and peppers, boiled egg and feta cheese (with just red wine vinegar for dressing) for lunch and maybe chicken or crustless quiche or chili ro something like that for dinner.

I have basically been doing this for 3 weeks, and I have lost about 13 pounds so far.  I haven't worked out a single time (which is depressing, honestly, but it's just hard to figure out the logistics of it with the 3 kids with me every day) and I'm losing weight.  So far, I would definitely say that this is a healthier way to eat for me.  Jason seems pretty set on this diet right now, so I'm pretty sure that I can keep it up as long as he is doing it.

I also hope to have the kids eat less processed food and more fruits and vegetables.  They still have oatmeal for breakfast and PB&Js for lunch, but I'm trying to give them more bananas and apples and grapes and cantaloupe.  Unfortunately, it's hard to get them to eat vegetables, but I'm hoping they will eventually warm up to them (or maybe I can find more fun and tasty ways to offer them).

So I'm right around 157 pounds right now and I was 155 before I got pregnant.  I'm 2 pounds away from my pre-pregnancy weight, and Evelyn is only 3 months old.  With the twins, it took 9 months and LOTS of running to work it all off.  So far, I think I like our version of the primal diet.  Of course, our grocery bill is much, much higher, but I think it's worth the money spent on food.  After all, you are what you eat.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Miles and Vivienne are both really into singing right now.  Their favorite tunes are Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star and Happy Birthday.  They also love to sing and dance to the songs on the cartoons they watch - mainly Dora and SuperWhy.  Vivienne seems to have the most enthusiasm for music, but Miles plays along with her as well.

It's adorable to watch Vivienne singing her little heart out about the "super readers saving the day" as she dances in the living room.  She also frequently sings when we're in the car - mainly Twinkle, Twinkle and the Happy Birthday song.  Last night while she was walking down the street in her flower costume with Grandma, she was singing as well.

It will be interesting to see if my little songbird keeps up her enthusiasm for music as she grows up.

Evelyn is 3 Months!

Evelyn turned 3 months old a couple weeks ago.  I can't believe that she will be 4 months old in just a few weeks.  She has changed so much already, and it's hard to remember what our family was like before she got here.  It is kind of like she has always been with us.

She still has a head full of dark hair.  She lost a lot of it, but she still has quite a bit left (though it is much shorter than when she was born).  She still has this "Friar Tuck" bit growing around the base of her head, and she has a small tuft of long hair right on the crown of her head.  She has long, dark eyelashes and rich, chocolately brown eyes.

Evelyn has continued to get more vocal.  She often chatters away at us, and she has started to almost laugh.  It's not quite there yet, but it will be coming soon, I'm pretty sure.  She has begun to reach out to her toys on her play mat and her bouncy seat.  It is fun to watch her learning to use her little hands.

She and I will often spend afternoons lying in bed together while Miles and Vivienne are taking a nap.  She usually nurses and coos at me and gives me the biggest smiles.  Occasionally she sleeps, though I rarely am able to sleep with her there beside me.  I definitely cherish that time with her, though.  Having two 2-year-olds is non-stop activity and stimulation, and it's so nice to just spend some quiet time with my baby girl every day.