Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas from Addy & Lilly - guest blogger Aunt Cat visits!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from Addy & Lilly! Seeing my nieces has been such a wonderful experience, they are so excited about the holidays. They woke up very early on Christmas, probably to see if they could catch Santa - but 4:30 AM is a little early for most people, Addy & Lilly, however; are not most people. There was some screaming and yelling and finally around 5:45 AM some blessed peace;) They got a ton of really fun presents, not the least of which is a fully functioning kitchen - which took Jeremy and me two hours to put together one night. Swearing at tiny pieces of plastic and drilling and un-drilling because we had done something wrong was a fun way to start the holidays! The following day I tried to put together their new car by myself but could not finish without my trusty assistant, Jeremy! All these cracked out toys that say minimal adult assembly required are liars. Maybe if you had a small team of electricians and mechanics they could whip these toys out but not so much for regular people.
Earlier in the week we took the babies to the children's museum, which they adored. They love the playscape - we of course got there before the museum even opened (Joanna and Lili - you really need to hang out with Addy & Lilly because they love the morning as much as you two do!). So we were the first people in the playscape - Addy and Lilly went fishing, climbed the explorer wall, partied in the sandbox, and rocked out to all the Christmas music.

On Christmas Eve Aimee, Jeremy, Grandma Linda, Grandpa Ian, Addy, Lilly and I went to a church service at the church Addy & Lilly were baptized in. Addy & Lilly thought the Christmas carols were a great reason to shake their bootys, which was the beginning of the inappropriatness. By the end of the service, Lilly was actually front and center on the alter and Addy was heading for the manger. They both ended up in the manger, which is not at all ironic considering we all think they have a lot in common with another baby born on Christmas Day;)
Addy and Lilly have really made Christmas dresses work. They have rocked out a couple of really cute outfits so far. All in all, Addy & Lilly have made this visit memorable - they are so filled with utter joy that it really does melt your heart. I would close by saying they are perfect, but I would be afraid I was underselling them;) Merry Christmas from Addy & Lilly!

We had 21 at our house on Christmas Day...I learned a quick come-back from someone in my local "multiples club". When a stranger gives you unsolicited comments about your family and says something similar to "I bet you have a full house" you can always answer..."I'd rather have it full, than empty!" That described our day!

Christmas Eve--Things To D0....wrap presents (check), leave out cookies for Santa (check), disrupt the church service (check), wake up early in the a.m. (check)....Gosh, we are SOOOOO busy!

Family photo....Christmas Eve...2008

We give out kisses regularly now...a trick that never gets old, similar to showing off our dance moves. Here's Lilly laying one on Aunt Cat.

Addy & Lilly have such wonderful family who get them such thoughtful gifts. They are spoiled to the core, but do display signs of appreciation and thankfulness. As soon as this wears off, Jeremy swears they will be playing with cardboard boxes (which they seem infinitely thrilled with as well). Here are some of their favorite gifts from Christmas 2008....

"Okay, Addy, you and your baby follow me and try and keep up this time going around the kitchen table, okay?"--Lilly (always needing things her way, with new dolls, a pram and stroller)

Our first coupe arrived here, but our mom quickly realized that sharing a toy as cool as this was only going to last so long, so here we are in our first parade! (so we are already good at follow-the-leader, eh?)

"A kitchen that's all our own...if only we could figure out how to make macaroni and cheese."

Our first potty! Mommy & Daddy decided this truly was the gift that keeps on giving (if it get us out of diapers!). Notice, Lilly is sitting on it while using her cell phone from the new kitchen. Who did she learn this from?

"Wait, Elmo doesn't live inside our TV?"

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Childproofing Christmas and 15 month update

So, technically they are 16 months now, but I never posted about their 15 month check-ups. Granted, this was in the middle of a bug, so weights might be a little deceiving. Addy was 24.35 lbs (70th percentile), 32.2 length (89th percentile) and 50.60 head circumfrance (99th percentile). Lilly was 24.65 lbs (73rd percentile), 32.5 length (93rd percentile) and 48.6 head circumfrance (97th percentile)...bottom line, we think they'll be really tall geniuses. Here are some recent pictures.

Addy checking out the advent calendar. A tradition started with my paternal grandparents and something my parents are going to do for the girls. A small gift to start everyday in December. They love it and their little surprises. I'm just hoping this doesn't backfire on the 26th when they realize they won't get a gift everyday for the rest of their lives.

Lilly and our gated tree. Granted, I think she would admire from a distance, but I'm pretty sure Addy would try and scale it in a matter of minutes, so we thought we'd gate it and it has worked so far. I stole this idea from Jon & Kate Plus 8.

Addy on her first trip to Cookie Cutters, her face looks like she just saw Santa again, but she maintained composure and the new do is pretty damn cute.

Lilly looking equally terrified, but only freaked a little when she turned on the blow dryer.

Outside checking out daddy's handiwork on our lights. They gave him an A for effort, but we'll try harder next year :-)

Our new friend Brayden visited from Chicago, the girls were so cute, pointing and waving to him. Addy has even mastered "baby" and "bye-bye baby". It's enough to melt your heart!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Seriously, Santa?

A busy and traumatic day with first real haircuts and a visit to Santa. I'll share other pics at the weekend, but couldn't resist posting this tonight...

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Dad's new found appreciation...........................

Being a father now for roughly 16 months has been amazing. I think I am a pretty good at it too. I love Addy and Lilly like nothing else in the world and can honestly say that I have true appreciation for the words "Daddy's little girl (girls in my case)". They are both so smart, cute, have great sense of humors, have great rhythm and can dance (Lilly), extremely energetic (Addy), loving, and great eaters....they get that from their father of course.

Aimee went to Denver this past Wednesday and arrives home this evening. I opted to stay home with my beautiful babies and enjoy some solid bonding time. I have been working a lot of hours of late and have felt like an "absentee father". Since Aimee left on Wednesday, I have had a ton of help with Grandma Linda and Grandpa Ian coming in town from Tuesday to Friday and Grandma Jody and Grandpa Dave over Friday night, part of Saturday and Sunday.

I could go into all the fun things we did this weekend, but Aimee does a great job of doing that during her weekly posts. What I do want to comment on is my new found appreciation for my wife and what she does with these girls on a daily basis.

Staying home with twins is hard. I don't care how much help you have, IT IS HARD; mentally, physically, and emotionally. I have taken this for granted because I work 8 to 10 hours most days and don't typically see the day to day activities. Aimee is the best mother a child could ever ask for and an amazing wife too. I really don't know how she does it. I am truly appreciative and grateful for her, the amazing children we have, the patience and energy she has with Lilly, Addy, and Daddy. I love you so much......and don't leave again for more than a couple days.
Here are a couple of pictures I took this weekend and as you can tell I slipped a little on general hygiene. Notice their hair!
Addy: "Dad, can I have another bag of snickers?"
Lilly: "Dad you were right about eating too much, I think I've slipped into a carbohydrate coma!"

Sunday, November 30, 2008

We survived...

We all survived a pretty nasty stomach flu and finally a week after it started, we feel back to normal. We managed to celebrate Thanksgiving with Jeremy's family and hopefully kept germs to ourselves. Jeremy and I planned to head to Louisville for a wedding with friends last night and we couldn't get there. The girls were so needy and we just didn't feel like we could leave them, so we stayed up at the lakehouse with Grandma & Grandpa Ash. I head to Denver this week for a board meeting of the organization I'm working with, so dad's on duty with help from my mom and his. Hopefully everyone stays healthy. Here's some pics from our Thanksgiving!

"Now, Grandpa Dave, tell me what card you are looking for and I'll try my sweet talk."--Lilly

"Uncle Joe, does your belly hurt from all that yummy food, I think I have heartburn."--Addy
"Yep, definately heartburn..."(Lilly on left, Addy on the right)
PS. Aunt Cat--we are sorry you are sick, do pictures of us make you feel better???? Get well soon!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Blogging through the Barf....

I said in an earlier post when my babies were battling reflux that there was nothing worse than a sick baby...well there is, 2 sick babies, a sick mom and a sick dad--yep, that's right, we all have some gross strand of the stomach flu (apparantly one that a flu shot doesn't prevent). Life has not been good. This all happened after I had begun to let my guard down about my toddlers going out to public places for playtime, knowing it would be a long and lonely winter if I didn't get over some of my OCD tendencies. So, we had a good 3 days--went to our Mom's Day out Program on Friday, visiting the childcare center at the YMCA while Jeremy and I worked out Saturday and celebrated Tyson's 2nd Birthday at a Run/Bounce/Jump facility in Cincinnatti on Sunday. The girls loved them all, but somewhere we caught the bug then spread it to other unexpected kids---I am so sorry!!! Anyway, not much time around here for blogging, but here are a few things I've discovered over our few days....

1. When I was registering for baby items, I remember saying to Jeremy that the recommendations at Babies R' Us listed 4 sets of crib sheets, "when on earth would you need 4 sets of crib sheets?"...last night we needed 4 sets.
2. Babies can get this weird bacteria rash on their face when they have a cold. It's from a persistent runny nose. No big deal, the doctor prescribed a tube of ointment to clear it right up-went to the pharmacy and it costs $50...when was the last time I spent $50 bucks on face cream for MYSELF?....before we had kids...right.
3. When the doctor says bland food, be very specific to your husband about what bland means--mandarin organges are not bland and if you offer a sick baby their favorite food, they will eat it and regret it later.
4. The BRAT (Bananas, Rice, Applesauce and Toast) diet really does work for upset tummies
5. No more calling in sick, Christina's blog said it well, but when you are a mom, it sure gets lonely, Monday was awful, with Jeremy at work and never feeling so bad, it's true what they say, it's lonely at the top.
6. During this hellish week, my little snot nosed, vomitting, never stop pooping, bacteria rash on the face, diaper rashed butt babies know exactly what they want....their mom...and amazingly I'm still thankful.
Happy Thanksgiving--Please pray that we are all better for some turkey!

Here are a few pics pre-plague (we never look at the camera anymore)...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Guest Blogger: Aunt Cat visits!

I have been visiting with my amazing nieces for the past four days. They have been a little under the weather with colds and coughs (real coughs this time not fake ones!). One of the funniest things they do now is dance, which consists of them shoving their hips forward and then shoving their hips back so their butts stick out. They do this over and over and over again when listening to any sort of music, whether it be Elmo's world, the ABCs or the itsy-bitsy spider. They love music though, I sincerely hope that neither inherited my sister's or my own tone-deafness! We have had a super busy weekend - Uncle Jonathan and Grandma and Grandpa Sadler were all here as well. Jonathan had surgery and really who better to nurse him back to health than the cutest one year olds in the world? Addy was fascinated by Uncle Jonathan's nose cast and kept trying to help him with it...maybe she'll be a musical surgeon?

What cracks me up about Addy and Lilly is how much they like to talk...they are never, ever quiet unless they are eating or drinking. Both of them run around the house jibber-jabbering all day long, telling you lots of stories. We went shopping on Saturday with the twins which was a blast - when they were finally allowed freedom from the stroller they thought the mall was the best thing ever. I think this might be because it reminded them of one of their favorite play areas, mom's closet. I think when Addy and Lilly come and visit me in DC (I keep trying to get them to come for the Inaguration of Democratic President-elect Obama) I might have to install a security system on my closet! Addy and Lilly do love shoes - they probably inherited that from their father!

To write about my favorite brother-in-law for a moment, we did make a bet that if Indiana went blue I would wear a colts jersey. Yep, an electric-blue polyester colts jersey:( The things I will do for the Democrats! Jeremy also likes to give me the history of the new stadium every time he picks me up at the airport. I did wear my colts jersey...I don't know how I did not break out in hives with that much polyester next to my skin:( But yes on Sunday, the babies, Aimee, and Jeremy were all wearing colts jerseys right along with me (I cannot believe a fire marshal did not stop by!).

All in all, my nieces are unbelieveably smart, Addy said the word "vitamin" the other day! Lilly is a little book-worm, she loves, loves, loves to read. They are getting so big though and so quick - I am actually watching them by myself right now and now and fully understand "zone defense." We are going to the Children's museum today so I am sure Aimee will have tons of stuff to say about their brillance next week!

(She'll be mad I posted this, Jeremy made her put it on early, so the pic was taken somewhere before 9 a.m.) Jeremy's holding Lilly, Cat is holding Addy

Exploring the sand table with Aunt Cat at the Children's Museum

"Am I seeing double?"--Lilly

"God, mom, how many times do I have to tell you not to bother me when I'm working."-Addy

**One of my college roommates, Jessica, had a beautiful baby boy about a week ago--he has battled some health issues early on, but showing us he is a fighter! Congrats Jess & Jon and if you want to check out Baby Brayden, she's blogging at:

I'll get her added to my blog roll as soon as I have time!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

15 months

I've said this before, but my babies are no longer babies--full blown toddlers. Addy has mastered the stairs, while Lilly still likes to be carried. They head for their highchairs when you tell them it's time to eat, they bang on the back door when anyone leaves the house. Addy says "HI" to anyone she sees and if Lilly makes anyone read the Dr. Suess Alphabet book one more time, she may be reciting it before the end of the week. They also are at the age where they are testing me. I hear this stops somewhere around college graduation, but seriously, are they this smart already. Here is an example of behavior from each...
One day a couple weeks ago, Lilly was facinated with the only cord and plug accessible to her in our family room. It's attached to a tall lamp and they hadn't really bothered it before that day. I told her no several times, used my no/then distraction method and that didn't work, said no and smacked her butt and she kept going back to it, finally she lost interest/stopped fighting with me and went on to the playroom. Several hours later, she was playing with tupperware while I was unloading the dishwasher. I gave her several kid-friendly utensils and she was entertained, then she got her hands on the apple corer. I said no, chased her across the kitchen, pulled it out of her hands and walked away. She had a total meltdown, looked at me, stomped in the other room and ripped the lamp's cord right out of the wall. Are you serious?

Then there is Addy, she's a climber, she's been my monkey since very early. She now can get up on the couch and ottomon herself. When she does it, she typically raises her hands in the air like she's the gold medalist in Olympics gymnastics, it's pretty funny. Jeremy and I try not to encourage this and I tagged it an acronym my mom used to use and say simply it is ASB (Attention Seeking Behavior). Because a little like her sister, you tell her no and she wants to do it even more. So last week, with my mom and other witnesses, she climbed up onto my mother's antique coffee table. We all looked at one another, I told everyone to avoid eye contact and that it was ASB. She proceeded on raising her arms in the air, looking around and when realizing that no one cared she was on the coffee table, she sat down, reversed off like she does the stairs and went back to her toys. I realize this is typically behavior for kids, I guess I'm just shocked it is happening as early as it is.

This past month has been fun. We joined the YMCA and the girls seem to have fun in the child care center while mom tries to lose the last of my baby weight (how long can I use that phrase?). We headed to Pittsburgh last weekend so Jeremy could see the Colts defeat the Steelers. The Cahill crew came along since they had never been to Steel City and the road trip was better with DVD players for the girls to watch. We know every word to their Elmo video, but sanity was saved. Here are some of my favorite pictures from the long weekend.

Grandpa Ian reading to Ms. Lil.

The girls loved my sister's giant stuffed dog--Patrick the pup.

Since, mommy got a new phone, Addy's now obsessed with my old phone, it rarely leaves her hands.

After a couple too many....(don't worry we had a babysitter)

Name that movie..."You have a a bar."

Not just a baby--3 of them, L-R: Mallory, Addy & Lilly

Lastly--Happy Birthday Michelle! We love you! If you don't know Michelle, you can read about her amazing family here and her business ventures here. Friendships that lasts a decade are few and far between, so I appreciate her everyday!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day 2008

Addy & Lilly say "Get out and Vote!"
I can't wait to tell them that during the first presidential election of their lives, their homestate (Indiana) went BLUE for the first time since 1964!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

The Week in Pictures & Videos

Okay, so between a fun/new playgroup, a visit from my parents, a great halloween party at friends and the girls halloween, I am selfishly admitting that my highlight for the week was getting my new IPhone today. I'm officially obsessed and have no time today to update my blog because I am busy organizing my life with a new calendar, contact list, etc.

Let's just say it was a big step up from my old school phone that still used an antennae....
But, because I know you didn't hop on my blog to hear me talk about my new phone and how incredibly hip I already feel having it, I'll give you some pics of the week...

*Lilly is becoming quite the book worm right now--loving to be read to and pretend "reading" each time you finish a book with her, she's off your lap and on to find a new book.

*Uncle Jon & Dad with the girls Halloween night (yes, those are beers)

*Our politically incorrect costume party threesome--me dressed as The Nanny, Jeremy as the Man in the Middle and our friend Becky as the wife (Mrs. Denial)

As for our new "winter" playgroup, you'll have to visit Jacob's blog for the outcome of the chaos, but here's a video teaser of us trying to get our costumed kids to pose for the paparazzi.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Back problems, biting, Butler and babies...

Those who know me well, know that I have had neck/back issues periodically since college. I won't have any issues for months, then one wrong reach for something and I'm practically on my back for 3 days. After a few issues in the last month, this morning's pain led me to call a doctor and have Elmo entertain my children while I laid on the floor waiting for Aleve and a heating pad to kick in. Feeling a little better and still waiting to get into the doctor, I thought I'd update my blog while the girls eat their lunch.

Addy & Lilly have been busy spending some time in the last week with friends Mallory & Jacob. Mallory has learned to hug, and was first illustrated with no coaching and a sentimental hug given to her good friend Lilly. Caught slighly off guard that someone was in her space, Lilly accepted the hug, but didn't really reciprocate. The whole scene melted my heart and showed me the affectionate toddlers they are becoming....atleast for a while. Later that night (maybe the next day, not sure at this point), we had bloodshed. Fighting over the damn cozy coupe, Lilly bit Addy so badly, we saw blood and a bruise for a couple days. Instituting the zero tolerance on violence, Lilly spent 1 minute in her crib for time-out. The doc recommended time-out lasting as long as their age. So, the summary for the week is that my friend Megan is raising a hugger and I'm raising a biter--what this will mean down the road is unknown.

For a little fun, the girls continued their tailgating streak, and spread some love down at Butler on Saturday! Good friends visiting from Chicago and we had fun despite the frigid temperatures. Remarkably, the girls didn't catch colds. They were tuckered out from chasing frat boys, flirting with Jacob and meeting real-live bulldogs!

Friends, Elizabeth & Will welcomed Evan Bradford Spice into the world late Friday night (11:02 p.m.). He was born 7 lbs 14 ounces. Congratulations to the proud parents! I'm trying to convince Elizabeth to enter the blogosphere, so I'll keep you posted if she does! On that note, my blog roll is looking a little pathetic--I'm protesting friends that don't keep their blogs updated!!! If you are a reader and want to be added to the blog roll, leave me a comment and I'd love to add you. If you are on the blog roll and haven't updated (you know who you are)--update soon or we'll go on strike...
Lastly--Congrats to Aunt Cat who finished her comprehensive exams at Catholic University this week. We are so proud of you and know you did great! Can't wait to see you in a few weeks.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Monday already?

So, I was beginning to feel left out because I hadn't tried this leash thing yet and apparently Jacob and Chase love their monkey backpacks, so my mom and I tried them this weekend. Not a good experience. Either they don't get it yet or they really are smarter than me, but they wanted nothing to do with them. They actually still run in opposite directions and just manage to fall all over the place. Here are a couple of the looks I got...
The week's highlights--The Northside Twins & Multiples Group Halloween Gathering, Grandma & Grandpa Sadler visit, watching the Steeler's game at Uncle Jon's and going to pick out pumpkins!
"What the hell is going on around here."

"I see you lookin' at me"--Lilly our little bumblebee

"Why do I have to wear this again?"--Addy as a ladybug

"How many of these could fit in our wagon?"

"Mom--Daddy always says 'Go big or Go home.'"
"Can you help a sister out? I can't lift this alone..."
And because my sister can't get enough of the are a couple new clips...