Friday, July 27, 2012

Summer Lovin'

Last weekend the children's hospital that I work at hosted a "Healthy Kids Fair", and I took Luke and Abbey...

They got to make super-cool visors, and get temporary tattoos!

They got to explore the inside of an ambulance...

We've done a lot of hanging around the house...

...taking care of babies...

We've been to StoryTime at the Library...

And to the park & splashpad with some of our favorite friends...

All in all, it's been a pretty great summer so far!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Cuteness, YouTube style

We are big Toy Story fans in this house, and Sister is ridiculously in love with Jessie. We bought her this nightgown and she is obsessed with it. She wants to wear it every second of every day. We make her change out of it when we are going somewhere or to play outside and she always ask "wear Jessie when we get home?" 
The other day, upon returning home, she ran over, scooped it up, hugged it and said "Jessie! I so happy to see you!"

And really, if I had to pick a Disney Girl for our little girl to adore, a rough and tumble cowgirl is at the top of our list =).

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Monday, July 23, 2012

Thoughts? Advice? Recommendations?

I want to make Luke and Abbey a little "chore chart" and I'm debating what some age-appropriate things to check off daily might be.

So far I've got:

-Brush your teeth
-Clean up toys before lunch, and dinner
-Be happy

We're toying with some sort of potty option also. So far, neither of them has shown a big interest in potty training, and I'm not in any hurry either. Sure, I'd love the "extra" money that not having to buy diapers would save us, but honestly right now I enjoy the freedom of being able to go where ever we want, whenever we want, without having to worry about accidents and such. We do have a potty seat, and they always try to go before bath each night, but that's about the extent of it. So we're thinking of maybe a "tried going potty" option or something?

Have any of you out there done anything like this with your 2.5 year olds? 

I'd love some suggestions.

As they get older, of course their chores will change. And although there may be small rewards associated with a full sticker chart at this age, I also believe most chores are to be done simply because you're part of the family, and it takes the whole family to make the house run well. 
I'm mean like that =).

Thursday, July 19, 2012


ador-able  adj

Definition of ADORABLE

1 : worthy of being adored 

2: extremely charming adorable child>

Synonyms: lovable, darling, dear, disarming, endearing, lovesome, precious, sweet, winning, winsome

See also: Lucas and Abigail

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Lions and Tigers and Bears...oh my!

Yesterday we went with another Twin Momma friend and her Littles to the Zoo!

To say Abbey and Luke had fun would be a serious understatement. They had an absolute blast! And I had a blast watching them have so much fun =).

We'd only taken Luke and Abbey to the zoo once before - in December, for Zoo Lights - and they were only 19 months old, it was past their bedtime, and it was REALLY cold, so they didn't enjoy it as much as we'd hoped. 

But this time it was early-mid morning, sunny but breezy and they are almost 2 and 1/2, and it was a total success!!

(don't mind their facial expressions, I swear they were happy to be there!)

Checking out the big fish!

Six friends at the Zoo =)

Luke took it upon himself to meet this little girl. He walked right up to her and said "Hi, how are you?" 
Our little Ladies Man =).

I can hardly wait to go back! Hearing Abigail shriek with delight as she watched the penguins swim around was just about the highlight of my year. And listening to Luke recap over and over about how the "hippo wiggle his ear like dis (hand motions), he so silly!!!" nearly beats the penguin delight.

The kids had such a great time that they were worn out when we headed back home...I had to sing "I'm Bringing Home a Baby BumbleBee" at the top of my lungs over and over - complete with reaching behind me periodically to tickle legs - to keep them awake enough to get home and get lunch in them. I'm sure they crashed for nap time...I sure wanted to crash during my afternoon at work!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

A Picture Post

Hanging out with Auntie Em at Daddy's softball tourney.

My sweet Little Momma...

Our Silly boy...

...and Silly Girl...

Lovin' our bean box!

Practicing our golf in the front yard...

Thanks Grammie for the fun new balls!

A Boy and his Helicopter: A Love Story...

Safety first!

Cuteness, overload!

Friday, July 13, 2012

The moments that make me know I am a mother

Recently I've had a few moments that have made me stop and realize...I am a Mother.

Which may seem weird, seeing as how I gave birth to two children over 2 years ago.

Perhaps a better way to put it is I've had encounters that have shown me, in my soul, I am different than I ever was before. I am forever changed.

Why is this just now occurring to me?

The truth is sometimes I get so lost in the minutiae of refilling sippy cups, changing diapers, and reminding Little Ones to share, that I don't really reflect on where or whom I am. It all just is a part of my "new" daily routine that I catch myself wondering if I really am different or if this is just the Old Kendra in a new reality. One might think that because my days include so much time in the trenches that the fact that I am a Mother would be ingrained in me. And in some ways it is. But in many other ways, I feel like the pre-kid Kendra who is just struggling with trying to identify herself. Trying to reconcile the old self to the current life. Daily struggling with the reality of the incredible amount of selflessness that parenting requires.

Often I feel like a faker. A poser. This woman who is just winging her way through each day and motherhood in general. Sure I read endless books on parenting... I discuss my kids -what's working and what's not- with my other Mom friends...I brag about how cute they are to anyone who will listen...I, at any given moment, have approximately 13 cheerios in the bottom of my purse...but am I really, innately, a Mother?

Sure, there is something magical about when my daughter touches my face and says "Momma" in the most endearing, cherub-like voice you've ever heard. And yes, my heart beams with maternal pride when my son tells Daddy about the new owie on his knee and then explains, factually, "but Momma kiss it, make it allllll better!".

But the sometimes I wonder if I really am different? Perhaps it's the internal struggle of selfishness I still find myself battling with more often than I'd prefer. That I can't pee without someone knocking on the door...

And then I have these moments. These moments where I know I am changed to my core. The two that come to mind lately ironically have nothing to do with my own children. Perhaps that's why they are identifiable. Because I able to see the me that's changed, the me apart from them.
A few weeks ago, the twins and I were at OMSI, and as we were walking into our particular museum room of choice, I noticed a little girl, probably 5 years old, looking around anxiously. And in that moment, I just knew she was lost. With my twins still tucked safely in their stroller, I walked over to her and said in my kindest voice "are you okay?" She stared up at me wearily. I got down on my knees, looked her right in the eyes, and said "my name's Kendra, and I'm a mommy. See, these are my babies right here. If you need me to help you find your Mommy, I will." And with that her eyes filled up with tears, and she admitted she had indeed lost her mother.
I stayed down on my knees and kept eye contact and a soft, yet confident tone as I told her our plan..."see that man over there? He has an OMSI shirt on and a name tag. He works here. See how he has a walkie talkie on his belt?"
She nodded.
"Let's walk over to him, and he'll use his walkie talkie to let the rest of the people who work here know that you and your Mommy lost each other. And we'll all help you two find each other again! Okay?"
She nodded again, and accepted my extended hand.
A few minutes and a successful plan later, Mommy and daughter were reunited.

Her mother must have thanked me 50 times, which seemed so strange. Of course. What else would a Mother do? 

Then last week I was at work, when a Radiologist called up and needed me to page our Surgeon right away with some concerning test results. I did so, and shortly after that our Surgeon called and said the patient (a 5 month old) and his parents were on their way up to our office, and we were to take them over to the Operating Room, where he would meet them and proceed with emergency surgery.
I called the OR to put the case on the schedule, and waited for the family to walk into our office.
In walks a Momma, pushing a stroller with her sweet baby inside.
She looks nervous.
I told her I'd be with her in just a moment, and went back to my desk to finish arranging the case.

As I was on the phone, I watched her in the waiting room with her son.
I could tell by the way she was looking at her baby that she loved him dearly.That she was scared. But that even though her child was a mere infant, she was trying desperately to be strong for him and not show him fear.

I tucked some kleenex into my pocket before I went out to talk with her.

"Sorry to make you wait like you want to have a seat so we can talk?"
She sat nervously, and frantically sputtered something to the effect of "why did they tell us to come right up here? What's going on? Why won't anyone tell me what is going on??"

Protocol for this is gray. I am not a nurse. I am not an M.A. In fact, I do not have any initials behind my name.

But I am a Mother.

My job here was technically to book the case, and take her and her baby over to Admitting.

But I am a Mother.

So I sat next to her and said "there was something on the ultrasound your son just had that stood out to the Radiologist. He called our doctor to discuss it, and our doctor wants to check him out right away. What they are looking at can absolutely be fixed, but it very likely will require surgery. Immediate surgery. So in a few minutes, I'm going to walk you over to Children's Admitting and we're going to talk to them about getting your son ready for this to occur this afternoon."
She started sobbing.
I reached over and hugged her.
And there I sat. Hugging a woman I had never met, yet I knew.
My eyes watered as I told her "I know this is a lot to take in. I know you must be so overwhelmed and scared. I am a Momma too. I love my babies too. But I can tell you with a clear heart that your baby is in excellent hands, and we are very lucky to have the chance to fix what needs to be fixed before a greater, more dangerous issue occurs."
A few minutes later we made the trek to Admitting. I stayed with her until her OR nurse came out to discuss things a little more clearly...not because I had to, but because I wanted to. If I were that Mom, if that were my baby, that's what I would have wanted.

And we Mothers are all in this together.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Our 4th

Thought I'd hop on here real quick and post some pictures from our 4th of July =).

We had plans to go to a potluck with some other twin/triplet families from our group that morning, and then head down to Dave's parents for the afternoon and evening, but in the days leading up to the 4th, illness washed over our home and we were all - at one time or another- down for the count. There was a LOT of this going on...

...yes, that's our children, laying near-listless, on our bed watching Mickey Mouse's Clubhouse.

It started with Luke getting 103.4 fever, which lasted a few days, then Abigail jumped on board the fever train too. Then David, then me. It wasn't pretty. There was some puke. Some crying. Some restless nights. Lots of whining - some even by the children.

By the 3rd we were feeling better but not great, so we canceled our morning plans and decided just to head South to see family after nap time. 

The cousins...

Luke and Abbey both took turns playing Cowboy and Cowgirl, naturally...

We did Sparklers...

And the kids ran and ran and then ran some more...

(don't mess with that boy!)

Poppa lit off some bigger fireworks in the driveway. Abbey and Luke weren't sure what to think at first, but they both deemed them fun soon enough. Luke didn't like the loud ones. He would say "Momma cover brother's ears". So I did.

Our little family...

We played with the dog...

 ...joyfully =)

...and showed off our dance moves...

...and before we knew it, it was time to say goodbye...

And this was about 2 minutes into our drive home...

...the sign of a good time!