Monday, December 31, 2012

Andrew's birth day

Today was (well, still is) Andrew’s birthday, and our plan was to take him to Science World.  However, I had a splitting headache (still – this is now day 3 of it) this morning, and knew there was no way I’d be able to go anywhere with it.  James had a slight headache himself, and Andrew was complaining about a stomach ache…which developed into a fever and him sleeping for the majority of the day.  We were getting worried about him, when he suddenly became himself again and dressed up like the Incredible Hulk and started dancing around the room.  He’s completely back to his old self now!

So we didn’t do anything for his birthday, but at least he had his party yesterday so it wasn’t a complete bust.  Last year his party was cancelled and we were all sick, so at least we got some celebrating in this year before things went down hill!!

It doesn’t feel like ‘new years’ to me because it will always be Andrew’s Birthday to me on this day.  I don’t feel super reflective about the year like I normally would, although I’m definitely appreciative of the past year. 2011 was the worst year of my entire life, pretty much from start to finish it was bad news.  So having not one, but TWO bundles of joy brought to us this year felt like such a beautiful miracle, and made for a wonderfully memorable year.

I’m feeling bittersweet about our upcoming move.  I’m getting more and more excited the more I think about it (James went and filled out the application today and we’ve put a deposit down so the place is essentially ours as I can’t see any reason why our application would be denied!)  I can hardly wait to get into the new place and start decorating, as tired and insane as I feel most of the time.  It will be cathartic for me to purge here and start fresh in the new place.

But I will miss this condo for sure.  So much happened here, I went through both the good and the bad here and there are a lot of memories within these walls.  I love it here and of course it feels like home to me, and part of me is feeling sad and scared about leaving it because I realize what I’m leaving behind.  It’s not like past moves where I desperately wanted to leave where I was.  This is such a cozy home and as I sit here typing this, I feel like this is where I belong.  It feels weird to know that literally one month from now, we will have turned over the keys and will never go here again.  Also weird knowing we’ll live so close to the place that we’ll likely see the new tenants hanging out in the yard space in the summer time!

But it’s good, I’m happy, just emotional, and I guess there’s nothing wrong with a bit of that.

In pictures (finally)

I hate that I don't tend to post pictures alongside my words most of the time.  I wish I had the time to upload photos every time I post something, but it doesn't seem to work out that way. 

Before we're into a whole new year, here are a few pictures from Christmas time 2012 at our house:

 2012 was an AMAZING year, one I will never forget - getting pregnant, finding out it was twins, going through a crazy double pregnancy, and meeting our beautiful girls, watching Andrew learn and grow so much...And now I look forward to all the new experiences that 2013 is sure to bring - starting off with our big move in a few weeks, settling into our new place, and continuing our transition into being a family of 5, with Andrew and the babies no doubt continuing to wow me every day =)

Happy New Year!!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

New year, new home!

I feel so far behind in my journaling, and at this point I’ll never catch up.  But at least I’m here now!!

A lot has been/will be going on, I feel so busy and so tired and unfortunately I have a splitting headache (and my period, which since the twins were 4.5 weeks old has been happening every 3-3.5 weeks…not sure how normal it is to be EARLY every month but it’s getting on my nerves the fact this is the 3rd one since they were born and they’re not even 3 months old yet!!)  (Sorry for TMI, but seriously!)


On the night of the 27th, James and I went and looked at 3 different townhouses to potentially move to.  Two were a little ways away from where we live now, and one is literally a hop, skip and jump away from our current place (ok, maybe not literally, but it takes 2 minutes TOPS to walk there from here!)  We liked the first one we saw, and the 3rd one.

We haven’t really had any other leads on places that fit our criteria (being a townhouse, having at least 3 bedrooms, bigger space in general, no one living above us, yard space, preferably a wood burning fireplace just because we love having one so much!)  Basically a place that we wouldn’t outgrow any time soon, since we want to plant our roots where Andrew will go to school and that sort of thing.  Plus moving is expensive, and with 3 small kids and no sleep these days, a pain in the you know what.

So anyway, we decided to seriously consider the two places we liked.  We almost had another viewing lined up but decided against it because ultimately we were leaning so strongly toward the 3rd place, the one that’s so close to where we are now.  The thing is, the other one is farther away, which means James would have to leave for work earlier and get home later.  He would also only have one bus option, so if he missed it he would potentially be home significantly later.  It’s also a ways up a hill, and since he’s hoping to bike to work in the spring/summer when it’s nice, he was worried he wouldn’t feel as inclined (no pun intended, haha!) to do so living there.  We know we like (love, really) the area we’re in now, so we knew taking place #3 would mean we’d be happy with our surroundings.  We’re not wanting to move because we’re sick of this place or the area, it’s out of necessity for more space.  So townhouse #3 felt like a right fit.

We were worried though, because even though our actual lease is up Feb 1st, we had already agreed with our landlord to bump it to March 1st.  Which would mean paying double + rent for TWO MONTHS, since the townhouse was ready for Jan 1st!  We knew we couldn’t swing that, so taking the place would mean an agreement with our landlord, and hopefully an agreement with the new one for a later move in date.

The stars aligned, because our landlord here agreed to Feb 1, and the landlord there agreed to Jan 15th, so we ‘only’ have to pay for an extra 2 weeks here, and ultimately it will be good to have that because it means not having to move right on the 15th, and having extra time after we move out to clean the place and whatnot.  Tomorrow morning we are going to sign the lease and put the deposit on the townhouse, so fingers crossed it all works out!  Part of me is super nervous because I sort of have my heart set on it, and if it falls through I’ll not only be disappointed but totally freaked out because we now have to be out by Feb 1!!!

If it works out, wow, I will be SO excited.  Also totally stressed because packing and then moving and unpacking is going to be somewhat hellish given how tired I am, and how little time I have where no one is needing me for anything.  I’m excited about setting up our new home, it’s just the process of getting there that seems daunting.  I basically will have about 2-3 weeks to get everything sorted, which is ample time if I didn’t have babies/kid/no sleep issues!!  But I know I’ll manage somehow. 

It’s CRAZY that we found something that met our criteria so quickly when it comes right down to it!  We probably could have afforded to look around some more, but realistically we wanted to stay in this area, so it just made sense to go with the one we’ve chosen.  It has a great layout, Andrew’s room will be bigger than his room here, the girls’ room (shared) will be big enough for the two of them, the master bedroom has not one but TWO walk-in closets, so we’ll for the first time EVER in our 14 years together have our own proper closet space, which is AWESOME!  There’s good storage, a large living space, wood burning fire place, not fenced in to my liking but good backyard space and private, there’s even a little front yard that’s enclosed that we might use for our outdoor table and chairs. 

The place is VERY dated, it’s quite 70s…and I don’t necessarily care for that.  I LOVE our amazing updated kitchen here, and I WILL be very upset to not have that anymore.  It’s possible I might even cry about it, I love it that much!  There is a really ugly (in my opinion) ‘decorative’ tile in the upstairs bathroom at the new place that is SO not my taste.  I hate the lighting fixture in the kitchen, and I don’t care for the countertops either!  Why are we moving there (most likely) you might ask?!  LOL  Well, because the pros far ourweigh the cons.  James and I both knew that we wouldn’t be able to afford a 3 bedroom UPDATED townhouse, so we knew we’d be looking at something along the lines of what we’re taking.  And, really, I’m OK with that.  Once we have all our stuff in there, we can make it our own, and work around the stuff we’re not fond of.  There really is so much to love about it.  It’s literally DOUBLE the space we have here, which makes me giddy with excitement!!  The day after James and I saw it, I took Andrew to see it in the afternoon because while of course it was our decision, we did want to see what he thought of it, too.  And he loved it from the minute he stepped inside.  He went running for the living room and said, ‘Whoooaaa, look at how BIG this living room is!’ and then he saw what he requested our next place have and exclaimed, ‘Mommy, look!  STAIRS!  IT HAS STAIRS!’  LOL

So hopefully it all works out and tomorrow we are able to secure the place so maybe my headache will go away and I’ll stop feeling like I’m getting an ulcer from the stress of it all!  I can’t stand not know where we’re going to be living, and I just want this settled.  It’s going to be SO exciting once we’re in there, I just wish we could speed the process along – though I know it’ll be happening in no time at all, the way time seems to be flying by lately.

Yesterday we went to see Cirque du Soleil, which was amazing of course…but I’d had a really rotten day leading up to going.  James had to work Saturday morning at the office in order to be given tomorrow off to celebrate Andrew’s bday.  So he had to leave for work at his normal time in the morning, which meant no sleep for me (or much for him, for that matter).  The girls were both quite…lively, shall we say, yesterday morning, so I felt so busy, yet had a bunch of things to get done before my aunt and uncle arrived to babysit them so I could head out.  Andrew had slept over at my parents’, so I had to pick him up and then we were skytraining downtown.  The plan was that my parents would meet up with us afterwards to drive us home, because I would need to pump milk before heading home since I can really only go a maximum of 4 hours (preferably) without pumping these days.  I’m actually trying to pump more frequently again because my supply might go down somewhat this next week or so, apparently due to a natural hormone change at around the 3 month mark?  Or so I’ve been told by mothers of multiples who have been there and done that! 

It was the mil who got the tickets for us to go to the show (with her and my bil but he didn’t end up going…that’s a whole other story I won’t even get into).  She bought them in late November and told us it would be our xmas present.  I had asked James how long a show it would be, as I can only go so long between feedings, and he had said he figured probably just over an hour-ish.  I figured that was doable as I could pump right before heading out (which I did) and then pump again right after the show in the van (or my parents’ car, although I ended up doing it at my bro and sil’s since they live close to the venue!)

I was in a fairly bad mood when Andrew and I arrived to meet up near the venue with James and his mom…but became irate when I was told that the show was actually 2.5 hrs long!  I had pumped at 1:45pm, as soon as I left to go get Andrew and head to the skytrain.  I had already realized that it would be extra long between feedings/pumping, but when I realized it would be about 6.5 hours, I was SO PISSED OFF.  I am usually not entirely outspoken in front of my mil, but I was fairly openly angry, and I said, ‘I’m not supposed to go more than 3-4 hours between pumping, I really shouldn’t have been going to this!’  Because as much as I appreciate the ticket to go, I really started to feel annoyed by it, truthfully, because it felt like it wasn’t even considered what my current situation is.  If she had thought about the fact that I’m nursing twins, perhaps before buying me a ticket she could have asked me if I felt I would feel comfortable with being away from the babies at this stage for such a long time (as it was, we were away for nearly 9 hours, which felt too long for me, truthfully.  I hadn’t anticipated that).  And of course, as expected, I experienced let-down and it soaked through my shirt, and so by the time I DID get to pump, it wasn’t coming out as it needed to/should.   And it REALLY pissed me off extra when, despite seeing how anxious I was upon finding out how long I’d be going without getting the milk out, my mil said, ‘Yeah, that prickly feeling when the milk needs to come out is funny, isn’t it?’  I said, ‘Actually it HURTS, and I’m going to be experiencing it in a few hours now.’   I enjoyed the show, but had a headache and just felt generally not-so-great, which was a bit of a shame.  But whatever…I think part of it, too, is just how tired I am and knowing how much I have to do in the near future.  The thing is, yesterday I also had today to be thinking about: Andrew’s 4th birthday party!

Tomorrow is Andrew’s actual birthday, but we wanted to save his day for ‘just us’ so it wouldn’t be so hectic, and with it being new year’s eve, not so complicated for other people who would want to be celebrating that instead of a birthday.  So we had a Tom and Jerry themed party, at Andrew’s request, with 9 guests.  I was feeling sick over the whole thing because just trying to go out to get the groceries for it felt like too much, so my parents ended up taking my list and picked up everything, including the cake I ordered.  Which was amazing, because if I’d had to do it all, honestly the way I’ve felt the past few days I would have had to cancel the whole thing. 

Andrew seemed to have a great time at the party.  He particularly enjoyed playing with some Super Mario cars he got from a cousin.  He also got a new bike, a big boy bike with training wheels, from me and James!   Tomorrow is his big day, and I’m looking forward to us having a family day, ‘just’ the 5 of us, to celebrate.

Happy new year!!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Our Christmas

I can’t believe Christmas has already come and gone! 

On Christmas Eve I really wanted James to take me and the kids out to look at Christmas lights.  Well, obviously the babies would be asleep, and the idea was that Andrew would enjoy the lights and inevitably fall asleep, so James and I could have some quiet time together.  We’ve come to realize that, somewhat sadly, one of the only times we get some real quiet time together to chat without interruption is when we’re driving in the van with the kids in the back! 

We came to this realization the last time we were all out driving together, and the babies slept while Andrew listened to music on his iPod.  It was such a relaxing drive, and we actually got to not only START a conversation, but FINISH it – AMAZING!!

I was actually kind of sick on Xmas Eve, and I don’t know if it was a virus or just that I was really tired, it’s hard to say.  I was throwing up, feeling really weak, and soooo tired.  My parents came over to help with the kids so I was able to go have a nap, and I actually slept for 2 hours straight, which really helped.  After they left when James got home from work, we started the process of getting everyone ready so we could go look at the lights.  Talk about total gong show!  We were thinking of just forgetting the whole thing, except that I kind of had my heart set on it because I’d been cooped up inside too long and I knew we weren’t leaving the house on Xmas day, so I really felt the need to get out, even if just for a drive around.  I also really wanted the ‘date’ with James, where we could chat and not feel like we were just going through the motions of our usual routine.

But the babies suddenly became ravenous, and went on a feeding frenzy before we could get ready.  Then Andrew started getting fussy and fell asleep on the couch.  It probably took about an hour and a half (or more!) to get ready, and we finally left around 8pm, when technically James should go to bed around 8:30-9, so it wasn’t ideal.  James had to carry Andrew to the van because he was asleep before we even left, so he didn’t see a single light, and the girls were still fussing (as in, full on crying) when we got to the van.  We thought they’d quiet down once we started moving, but Emily didn’t, so we had to go stop in a nearby parking lot and give her a bottle.  About 2 minutes into starting to drive again, Margaret was crying, and we had to stop along some residential street and feed HER a bottle.  It was ridiculous!  Finally, after a few more minutes of fussiness, I found a radio station that seemed to calm her down, and everyone was quiet.  So we got to chat, look at some lights (and even saw 2 coyotes cross the street in front of us!)

When we got home we got Andrew to bed (we’d put cookies out for Santa before we’d left, along with eggnog, and a carrot for Rudolph.  It was so cute because I told Andrew we should put out a carrot for Rudolph and he said, ‘We need the whole bunch, Mommy, because we have to give one to ALL the reindeer!’  Awww!)  Then James went to bed and I got the babies sorted for bed.  When I went for my first sleep shift, I could NOT fall asleep and just tossed and turned for several hours.  James was able to sleep through as the girls didn’t wake up – which made me get up around 2am because I was worried as to why they HADN’T woken up!  Ridiculous.  At about 3:30am, I had had about half an hour of sleep or something silly like that.  I just could not get to sleep!  We did some Christmas things that needed taken care of, and then right when I went back to bed around 4am, I heard Andrew get up.

James was able to get him back into bed right away, but he didn’t want to go back to sleep (of course not, it was Christmas day after all!)  I went and got him and said he could come sleep with me in our bed since it was a special occasion, and we’d get up a little later.  Of course, once in our bed he just pulled at my hair like he used to do when he used to sleep in our bed regularly, and he said he was ‘having trouble falling asleep.’  So was I, but I REALLY needed a bit of rest if I was going to get through the day.  So Andrew played some games on my iPhone, and I slept for about 2.5 hours total.  (Well, he played for an hour-ish, then got up, and was SO patient waiting for me to get up before opening presents, I was truly amazed!  No way would I have been that patient as a child!!)

When I got up Andrew opened his stocking.  I think his favourite thing in there was an Incredible Hulk mug.  He kept saying, ‘How did Santa KNOW I would want this?!  It’s AMAZING, how did he KNOW?!’  So cute!  Then we got some coffee made, James and I opened our stockings, and I fed the babies while James handed out presents.  Andrew got so much stuff, I can’t even begin to list it all.  He did get the one thing he asked Santa for – Batman 2 for Xbox 360.  We don’t have an Xbox but my parents do, and he’d been obsessed with the demo of it for a while so he was SO thrilled to get the whole game.  I got a video of him opening it and it’s priceless.  It was the last gift he opened!  Some others include games: Perfection, Spiderman Operation, Hungry Hungry Hippo.  He also got a Tonka truck, lots of books, a Magic Show set, clothes, and so much more.  James got me a really nice coat, and I got new slippers from Santa, among other things.  James got a new robe, some clothes, other small things, and from Andrew he got a cool book called ‘Darth Vader and Son’ which Andrew was SO excited to give him!  (Andrew gave me some Cranberry Joy liquid hand soap from Body Shop which he was equally excited to give!)

My parents came over in the early afternoon for a visit, and after they left I went and had a nap because I hadn’t got enough sleep by a long shot, and it was already catching up to me in a big way.  James’ mom came over for dinner.  James basically made the whole dinner (aside from his mom bringing some veggies to roast, and dessert).  I offered several times to help but James insisted on doing it himself and letting me relax, which was amazing.  Usually I take on SO MUCH on Xmas and feel exhausted and perhaps slightly resentful (though I try not to!) so it was a real treat for me to just get to sit back – well, hold babies/feed babies, but also sit back since the mil was helping out with the babies.  Andrew had a 2 hour nap after a huge meltdown!  Dinner was great (looove tofurky, for serious!) and then we had dessert and winded down.  Got Andrew to bed finally, and then James had to go to bed since he had to work today (Boxing Day…so not fair…but he took all his vacation days when the babies were born so he had nothing left and apparently Boxing Day isn’t a stat holiday – booo).

The day went by fast.  It wasn’t entirely relaxing just given our current lifestyle, but it was fun, particularly seeing it all through Andrew’s eyes!

Next up is Andrew’s 4th birthday…which is so crazy – how can he be turning FOUR already?!  We’re going to have his party on the 30th, and on his actual birthday (which James WAS able to book off by working extra on another day) we’re going to do something fun just us as a family.

But for now, a little baby Margaret is calling out for Mommy…

(Pictures of our Christmas to come...)

Monday, December 24, 2012

Friday, December 21, 2012

My strong babies

Well, I’m glad the Mayan calendar proved to be wrong, and the world has not come to an end.  I’m also glad the non-apocalypse didn’t turn into the zombie one that some people expected!  Holding both babies at once is getting harder as my little girls pack on the pounds, and I’m not sure how I’d fend off the zombies without a free hand!  (Though I could probably just get Andrew to do it for me, he’d know what to do, and given his obsession with ‘bad guys’, he’d probably have some fun with it!  lol

So last night I got more sleep than what I’d expected.  I went back for my 2nd ‘sleep shift’ at 5:30am, and usually I’d be up by 7:30 at the latest.  James woke me up at about 7:15 because Emily needed fed and he had to leave for work (taking Andrew downtown for the day, which is the only way extra sleep was possible for me!)  He brought Baby B to me in bed, so I nursed her and we both fell back asleep.  Margaret was asleep in the crib in the living room (yes, the crib is now in the living room…did I mention that already?!)  Margaret didn’t wake up till 10:30, so I slept till I heard her cries for milk!  Wow!!  I couldn’t believe it.

The only downside to getting the extra sleep is the milk engorgement…You don’t need the mental image, but I’ll give it to you anyway (consider it an early Christmas present, HAHA!) My left breast was so full that I kid you not, I literally had to CARRY it out to the living room to fetch Margaret!  LOL!!!  It was even starting to get lumpy, so there’s NO WAY I could sleep longer than I did without pain and the possibility of infection if any of the ducts got clogged.  Fun!!  Luckily Margaret fed like a champ and fixed the issue within about 10-15 minutes!  I fed Emily a little while later, and pumped, so there was a lot of milk delivery this morning.

It felt SO good to get that extra sleep.  I had a really bad headache last night that I still had when I got up, and for several hours, but the Tylenol finally is doing it’s job and I feel so much better.  I’m trying to get lots of chores done around here today, but I thought I’d take a little time to write my journal since I hate how little time I’ve had for it lately.

The girls are SO STRONG, it’s amazing to me.  Andrew was every bit as strong, if not stronger, by 2 months old – but that’s because he was so much bigger at birth.  I would have expected it from an over due baby, but not one month preemies!  But they’ve just grown so fast that I don’t think there’s any way anyone could tell they’d been born a month early.  Both of them do this but Emily in particular has taken to wanting to stand on my lap, and she pushes so hard with her legs that I am almost able to completely let go of her and she stands on her own.  Which is CRAZY, there is no way she should be able to do that yet!  She is also showing signs of being somewhat bored when she’s awake for long periods, not because we’re not trying to entertain her because I/we do.  But I think she either needs an exersaucer or the Jolly Jumper ALREADY (which is also crazy) because she needs to be working her legs more and doing something.  She can’t stand being idle when she’s awake!  Margaret tends to be fairly content to just lay there or sit on your lap and look around, and smile and she’s starting to make some ‘talking’ noises (whereas she was fairly silent before, other than her adorable little cry when she’s hungry).  But yeah.  We’ll have to look into getting an exersaucer soon.  No idea where we’ll put it since we’re already bursting at the seams here, but she’s going to need something like that to keep her busy!!

I love the girls so much, I can’t even express it.  And of course Andrew, we can never forget to include my precious baby boy!  I love that I can still refer to him as my ‘baby boy’ – even though of course he’s NOT a baby, he will always be MY baby boy, and being my only boy I can say that!  He has been so good with his sisters, and over all he’s been so patient and I think has made the transition of being #1 at all times to being 1 of 3 so amazingly well, I’m so proud of him.

I already can’t believe we ever lived without ALL our 3 kids.  I sometimes long for the amount of sleep I was able to get before having kids (like, every night when I’m pining for zzz’s!)  But I wouldn’t trade them in for all the sleep in the world, or anything else!  I look at our girls and wonder how on earth the world spun before they were here.  They definitely belong here with us, and I’m SO grateful that I was blessed with two babies at once.  It’s one wild ride, for sure, but so worth it.  I’m looking over at their two little heads pressed together while they enjoy a nice long afternoon snooze, and I am so in love just at the sight!