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February 23, 2016

Life is Like a Box of Chocolates

We don’t usually do much in the way of Valentine’s presents…we try to focus on a fun family day with crafts and a yummy meal.  In years’ past I’ve given them a little book, or some fun new socks.

This year I decided to treat the girls to their first [miniature] chocolate sampler.  I bought a little heart-shaped box of chocolates for each of them.  There were five pieces inside.  They were thrilled.

For the past few days, the girls have chosen one piece of chocolate after supper.  Baby A chose a chocolate covered cherry the first night.  B observed, and – instead of following suit --  she said she would save her chocolate covered cherry for last, since that is her favorite.

The next three occasions, the girls discussed their choices and picked the same piece from their boxes.

The last night, Baby A got to her box before B.  She popped that final piece of chocolate in her mouth…and made a surprised face.

My poor kiddo learned a tough lesson about a box of chocolates...and maybe about life…it’s not always possible to save your favorite for last.

Hee hee!

It’s a candy inside a candy!” she puzzled.  Poor A landed upon a cream-filled chocolate.  I’m with her on the ICK.  I felt sorry for her, so I told her she could have one piece of candy from her school Valentine’s haul.  She chose a Starburst…and then made a big face after eating that.  “It’s cherry!  It tastes like medicine!”  (We've had more than our share of cough medicine these past few weeks.  That must have hit too close to home.)

Hee hee, again!

I think my A is done with eating candy for a while.

February 18, 2016

Heart Strings


My heart strings. 

They are being tugged.  Pulled.  Stretched in uncomfortable directions.

I’m getting ready for the spring consignment sale.  And I’m struggling.

I tend to buy new clothes a bit on the big side, and we wear clothes for quite a long time.  A 4T sundress was likely bought when the girls were three…worn as a dress for a couple of years…and then worn as a tunic with leggings or shorts thereafter.

That means I’m just now parting with things the girls wore to preschool.  In the sale pile are the outfits they wore on their first day, when they were 3 ½…the outfits they wore for pictures…the outfits they wore for their year-end receptions.


Surely it seems like that was YESTERDAY.  Surely THREE AND A HALF YEARS can’t have passed since they plodded down the sidewalk in front of me, their cheeks still baby-chubby, since they came home from preschool and I laid them down for a nap in their cribs.

I really try to focus on the now…to enjoy each stage as we’re in it…not to mourn the passing time.  And I usually do pretty well with that.

But there’s something about holding these sweet little clothes that’s getting to me this week.  It may not just be that random prick of an errant safety pin that’s bringing a tear to my eye now and again.

February 16, 2016

My Snowy Valentines

The girls have a book called Snowy Valentine.  How many times have I thought about that title over the past few days??!!!

We had an unexpected snow day last Tuesday.  It was a big, white, slushy mess outside…not enough for me to work from home, but plenty that school was cancelled.

The forecast called for more snow on Friday.  That was the day of the girls’ Valentine’s party at school, and we were all hoping the weatherman was wrong.

No such luck.

The girls were a little bit disappointed, but they took it mostly in stride.  They agreed they could wait until Monday to exchange goodies with their friends.

And then on Sunday -- Valentine's Day -- we had our MoMs group Valentine’s party scheduled.


…the forecast called for snow again.

We postponed the party on Sunday morning, seeing the snow would come to fruition.

My friend D, whose twin boys are the girls’ BFFs, asked if we wanted to come over for a play date.  We thought the snow would start mid-afternoon, so we planned to slip in some heart-shaped goodies and crafts, just the few of us.

The girls were ecstatic when I told them about the play date.  “That’s even better!” B exclaimed, so happy to see her friends two-on-two.


…the snow came in earlier than expected.

We cancelled our play date.

Seriously.  Our poor girls were 0-for-3 in Valentine’s parties.

While we may have lost out on our original (and then makeshift) plans, it was actually a huge blessing that the snow came early.  We headed out as a family for some awesome sledding!

The snow was powdery…not good for snowballs or snowmen…but deep enough that we had a blast!
After we established our run down the hill (and Mommy got in a couple of trips), I headed back to the house for my camera.  It was a Valentine’s Day to remember, for sure!

Trudging up the steep hill!

Daddy and his B!

Daddy and his A!

Thumbs up after a great run!

B, zooming fast!

B's thumbs up!

Such a satisfying afternoon!
The Snowy Valentine book will no doubt have more meaning for us when we read it in years to come.  L-O-V-E!!!

(The girls were out of school AGAIN on Monday, but headed back today for a belated party.  I was able to slip away from work and join them for a bit.  They were just as excited on Tuesday as they would have been on Friday…seeing their friends after a FOUR-day weekend AND extending their holiday celebration.  Woo hoo!)

February 12, 2016

The Realities of Twin Parenthood: A 7-year Old's Perspective

When the girls get up in the mornings, we usually have the kitties in the basement.  Our routine is that we eat breakfast, the girls brush their teeth, and then they can go downstairs and play with the cats until about 7.

Baby A is usually the first to finish, so she usually has extra time with the fur babies.  A couple of mornings ago, she lamented:

"Mommy, I need you or Sissy to come downstairs with me to play with the boys.  It's hard when I'm down there by myself, because I can only play with one of them at a time."


My seven-year old just stumbled upon one of the big realities of twin parenthood.  I couldn't help but smile.

(At least the cats can feed themselves!)

Alex and Miki!

February 10, 2016

What My Husband Said...

What my husband said this morning was one of the sweetest things he ever could have spoken.

Yesterday was a snow day.  I joked that my girls were fine with that, but my husband (a teacher) was the one doing the Happy Dance (yes, in caps) at our house.

I know they had a fun day together.  They did numbers...they tossed the ball in the basement...they went out to lunch...and B reported she read "A LOT".  Hubby said something about watching a soccer game, so I know he had some "quiet time" to himself.  And they generally hung out with the cats, and watched the cats watch the snow.

"These days are such a gift," Hubby reflected to me early this morning.  He said how the girls are at such a wonderful much fun, so communicative...and he is so appreciative of having the extra time with them.  "I'd rather have a day today than have that day three months from now," he said.

Yep.  Three months from now, the girls will be three months older.  They'll have grown.  They'll be at least a little bit different than they are today.

How dear it was for me to hear my husband verbalize that sentiment.

February 7, 2016

Party Like Dinosaurs!!!

We had the girls' SEVENTH birthday party the weekend after their actual birthday.  (I may be a little late with this blog post, but we were a bit early with their party, at least to how we've done things the past couple of years.  And thank goodness we didn't have snow!)

We had the party at an awesome indoor gym.  The lounge area is beautiful, the equipment is shiny and new, and the parents have free access to the play area, too.  It was perfect!!!

(The only non-perfect thing is that we only had the facility for 2 hours, including set-up.  That was plenty of time for the party, but my decorating had to happen in a hurry.  I am reminded of that now, as I don't have quite as many pictures I typically do.)

The party itself wasn't a surprise for the girls, but the decorations were.  And I had so much fun with them!

ROAR!  Dino Dirt =  pudding + Oreos with a tiny dinosaur plodding through it.

Chex Mix...fresh fruit...and white chocolate covered pretzels...yum!
 The girls loved seeing themselves as dinosaurs!

"Hope you had a DINO-mite time!" written on our dino flyers (which are some kind of fun!).
 And I thought it was so cute that the girls asked on their birthday, "Mommy, are you going to have our pictures from every year?"  I hadn't originally planned to, but it was very sweet to me to see how they value that.  And it's pretty incredible to see how they change year by year!

The kiddos ran and jumped and played...everybody had a blast!  The only "activity" I had planned was a dinosaur obstacle course.  The kiddos donned dinosaur masks and had to get their eggs to a nest.

Here's A...looking at this picture, I have to wonder if she could see!
And after the course, I got a cute group picture.

The kids were ROAR-ing!
After lots of PLAY, it was time for Happy Birthday...twice, of course!

Four thumbs up!
  And then we PLAYED some more!

One of the highlights of the party was that A's teacher stopped by for a few minutes!  Baby A really wanted to invite her.  I told A she could tell her teacher about the party...but that teachers are busy with their own families on the weekends (as Daddy is with us), so I didn't think she'd be able to come.  I was so surprised to see her there!  It made A's entire month, for sure!

I may not have gotten all the pictures I wanted, but I did think to ask a girlfriend to take a family shot.

It was a great celebration of our SEVEN-year olds!!!

February 6, 2016

Bless It...

Our sweet Baby A is fascinated by weather.  She loves reading books about earthquakes and storms...but apparently she's managed to scare herself.

We were expecting severe weather on Tuesday night, and this is what she journaled -- of her own accord -- that afternoon:

I am scared of earthqwakes and tornatos and thunderstorm because of lightning it scares me because I am afraid it is going to strike me and that was why I am scared of thunderstorms and I am scared of tornatos because I am afraid it will wipe our house up and I am scared of earthqwakes because I am afraid it will brake the windows and wipe my bed out of the window when I am asleep.

When we built our house a couple of years ago, we talked about the main reason being so we would have a basement.  We reinforce with the girls that it's Mommy and Daddy's job to keep abreast of the weather.  If there is any danger, we'll simply go hang out in the basement...not a big deal.

I appreciate that A has a healthy "respect" for the power of weather...but it breaks my heart a little bit to see her thoughts on paper.

Bless this baby girl!!!

February 5, 2016

Super Stuff

I haven’t been very diligent – sadly – about my “Super Stuff” posts.  Sure, I capture a fair amount of fodder on Facebook, but I know I’m missing some notes over the past couple of years.

This past weekend, as we took a quick trip to Sweet Home Alabama, I kept a slip of paper in my purse, and I jotted down a handful of sweetness from the past few days…

The girls have been so sweet – and so grown-up! – relating to each other at times.  Baby A asked B to bring her a pair of socks from upstairs.  It just struck me as so cute…and so mature!!!  B said, “Sure,” and that was that.  Sister helping out a Sister.

And I had a similar sweet sensation when the girls were talking with each other about their school library.  Baby A was describing a certain set of books, and B couldn’t quite picture what she was talking about.  “It’s in that section…” A elaborated, moving her hands about, and B nodded in response.  Again, it just seemed so grown-up!!!

We’ve been struggling with coughs the past few weeks, on and off, and one night I had to go upstairs to check on Baby B.  I settled her down, and glanced over at A.  From her deep slumber, Baby A mumbled, “I love you.”  How precious it is that that’s the first thing to come to her mind.

We checked into our hotel last weekend, which is always a fun treat.  Baby A accompanied me downstairs for a cup of coffee.  On the way, we both skipped down the long hallway, hand in hand.  She was tickled to press the elevator buttons, and I let her pick up a pamphlet in the lobby.  :)  On the way back to the room, she again started to skip down the hall.  I told her to go ahead, that I’d have to walk with my hot coffee.  I started to laugh at seeing her joy from my vantage point.  She heard me, and threw up the “I love you” sign, not missing a beat.  It made me laugh even harder, and my heart smile even bigger.

These baby girls have such dear hearts.

February 3, 2016

What a Wonderful Surprise!!!

I got home from work yesterday, and immediately I could tell there was a lot of energy in the air.  The girls were beaming.  “We have a surprise!!!

They were running and jumping and giggling and conspiring.  I had no idea what to expect, but it was obviously something BIG.

Their eyes alight with joy, they could not wait to lead me to the office.  I found a CLEAN WORK TABLE.  Wow.  Seriously.  That is a big accomplishment…one that usually takes pulling some teeth to get done.

Hubby told me, “It was B’s idea.”  She beamed even bigger.

And it was my idea to clean upstairs!” Baby A added.

While I got supper ready, the girls were still buzzing about.  “Don’t look at the table!!!” they cautioned me.  They set the table completely, and then they exhibited the most amazing manners throughout the meal.  All the while, they were still beaming, and whispering to each other off and on.  They were SO excited, and SO proud.

After supper, I told the girls I wanted to make them a special dessert to celebrate what an amazing job they’d done.  They were excited, but then they looked to each other.  After more whispering, A said, “Can we have about five minutes?”  (She said this in the most grown-up way, that made me chuckle and wish I'd somehow recorded her seriousness.)

While the girls cooked up more surprises, I sauteed some apples, which we had over ice cream.  YUM!

And then it was time for the Grand Tour.

The five minutes they’d asked for went to dusting.  Yes.  Seriously.  It wasn’t great dusting…they used a tissue to wipe the window sills (HA!!!)…but the effort – and the PRIDE – was there.

They proudly showed me how they’d straightened their books in the den, and then they led Hubby and me upstairs.

Although their playroom was in decent shape to begin with, they’d straightened it up…and even organized their toy bins.  (THAT is BIG!!!)

They had everything ready in the bathroom for our night-night routine.  And the last stop was their bedroom, where they’d pulled down their beds AND laid out their pajamas.


This was a wonderful surprise, of course, made 1,000 times more wonderful by the girls’ pride and joy in what they’d done.

Let’s hope this is the start of a wonderful trend!  (A mama can hope, right??!!!)