Aunt Jenny came up to visit us the weekend of Martin Luther King Day. She arrived early evening onThursday and was able to stay for the long weekend until Sunday. With Kevin working a lot right now, I was excited when she asked if she could come and visit us and the kids. I was pumped to have her to hang out with, have extra help with the kids, and for company on these long days.
Thursday I had wanted to go to Target and get groceries. I decided to wait until Jen got here so I could have some help with the kids at the store....knowing one of them or both would want to walk and not ride in the shopping cart. After she arrived, we decided before we hit up Target we would stop for supper at Noodles and Company. It's a definite favorite of the twins who are crazy about their mac n' cheese!
our two little dinner dates
The kids were great eaters and quickly together burned through a big bowl of Mac and were still hungry. Thankfully Aunt Jenny shared some of hers...Aunts are the best!
After Noodles, we were on our way to Target. This was definitely an interesting trip. And after all said and done, I was sooo thankful to have Aunt Jenny their for help. While in the car on our way to Target, Kate started commenting about "poopies." She hadn't gone yet that day and I was still trying to figure out this whole dosage thing of the Miralax for her. She continued to complain and rock her body during our shopping at Target. She was pretty upset and uncomfortable, so I decided we better head to the toddler food section to get a can of Lil' Crunchies (toddler Cheetos) to distract her from her poppies problem. It definitely helped for awhile and she ended up eating the whole can with some help from Matthew.
Meanwhile, of course, Matthew didn't last but a few minutes sitting in the shopping cart. He wanted to walk himself. We let him out and for the most part he did do a great job with following and staying by our side. Mr. Matthew has turned into a little shopper. After watching mommy place items into the cart, he thought he needed to as well. Anything from an area off the shelf where he saw me take something off he would grab an item from there and toss it in the cart. He's so little so he had to pretty much heave it over his shoulders into the cart. And every time he put something in he would do a little "victory dance" like he was so proud he just did that! He was cracking both of us up.
So we had one girl crying, shoving in a lil' crunchie, crying, rocking her body, repeat...and then an extra shopping buddy who we had to keep our eyes on so we knew what items he put in our cart. We did pretty good sneaking the items out without him seeing us, but I did end up with a big bottle of mustard. I guess Matt's a fan! :)
Finally, just when we were almost done and ready to check out, Katers had success with her poopies. Jen instantly smells it. We decided to still both go through the check-out and deal with the diaper afterwards. Kate wasn't a happy camper (and I'm sure the check-out worker didn't like the smell) but we powered through and then headed right to the bathrooms. Like I said, don't know what I would have done without having an extra set of hands. I took and changed Kate in the family bathrooms, and Jen stayed with Matthew and our full cart of groceries. She had a big mess, but luckily nothing got on her clothes. Phew, survived Target!
On our way home we decided to stop at the Red Box right by my house and get a few movies to watch. I parked right next to the outside Red Box machines. Both Jen and I looked through the movies leaving the kids in the car right in our sight. Only being gone just a few minutes, we came back to our vehicle only to immediately smell another surprise as we opened the car doors! Kate had gone again. This time we weren't so lucky! We quickly headed home. Unloaded Matthew and turned on Mickey Mouse to keep him distracted and out of the way. I got Kate out of the car to find her clothes covered. Jenny started the bath and together we undress her and got her cleaned up the best we could before dunking her in the bathtub. Again, so glad to have Jenny's help!!! Jen stayed with her in the tub while I went and got her clothes cleaned and laundry started and quickly tackle unloading the refrigerated grocery items. I got back to help Jen get Katers cleaned and soaped up. So happy Matthew stayed put in the living room this whole time. Didn't need his help in all of this mess.
We then got both kids dressed in their pj's, groceries unpacked, and kids off to bed finally around 9:00. A later night for the twins. We were exhausted! Kevin got home soon after the kiddos went to bed and the three of us decided to watch one of our movies, "Pitch Perfect". A great funny way to end our night!
Friday morning before our ECFE class, Kate had her second Chiropractor appointment. I'm trying a Chiropractor to help with her constipation problems. I was happy the appointment worked out for when Jenny was here so she could hold Matthew while I was with Kate. Appointment went well and both kids were great troupers. We had some time to burn before heading to class so we stopped at the McDonald's drive-thru for breakfast sandwiches and fries. I knew the kids would start asking for "flies" once they saw the drive-thru. I know, super mom letting them have fries in the a.m.
We then headed to our Friday class. So happy that Jenny could come along with us and see what we all do. We took some pictures at class. It was a sports theme this week!
Sensory table filled with salt for an ice hockey rink.
Playing together with Aunt Jen
Shooting some hoops
The teacher even had a Mickey Mouse sports book! Katers loved reading it!
Friday night, Kevin got home at an earlier time so we cooked tacos for a family supper. We played with the kiddos and then put them to bed.
Hiding something in one of the compartments
One of his favorite toys!!
Kevin decided to go to bed early. He was tired and had to work again in the morning. Boo! Jen and I decided to watch one of our chic flicks we had rented, "Friends with Kids". We also wanted to try and make Marshmallow Carmel Popcorn from a recipe we saw on Pintrest. We documented our cooking. We're professionals. ;)
Nice stirring Jen!
Pouring our melted mixture over the popcorn
Our finished product - and it tasted yummy!
We started our Saturday morning off with lots to do. First we took Matthew to get his hair cut at Kids' Hair. I was wanted to get it cut again, the third time already, and knew having Jenny there to go with would be the perfect time. We packed the kids up and headed to the suburb next to ours.
Pictures before we left for our morning out on the town
Love Katers face!
First time with a sucker. It definitely did the trick of distracting him. Plus, Mickey Mouse was playing, too!
Spiked it all up before cutting it off!
All done and looking like a stud with his new haircut and gelled spiked hair. I liked the front spiked so well I bought some of their kids' gel to do it at home.
Got a sticker for being so awesome!
Picture with Jenny afterwards
Side view of the new style and enjoying a 2nd sucker
Next stop, Old Navy. I wanted to look there for Valentine's Day shirts for the twins. Plus, Jen and I had fun doing some shopping for ourselves too. By the end of our Old Navy trip both Kate and Matt were very ready to be done!
Kate and Matthew got balloons at the check-out for being super shoppers. The balloons have become a new favorite toy around our house now.
It was now lunch time so we went to a favorite of ours - Panera!
I had packed some fruit, cheese, and crackers to go along with their lunch at Panera. They were hungry and chowed it all down. Love these two messy faced lunch dates!
We got back to our house and put the kids down for their nap. We then watched our third movie, "The Odd Life of Timothy Green". It was one we knew Kevin wouldn't want to watch.
Then on Sunday we packed up and the three of us drove to Iowa with Jenny. I had planned on going to stay in Iowa for that week while Kevin's in busy season. It worked out perfect I could go back with Jenny instead of family coming and picking the kids and I up half way at the IA/MN border.
The four of us loved having Aunt Jenny visited. Kate and Matthew loved all of the extra attention, I thoroughly enjoyed the company and help, and Kevin was happy I had an extra set of hands while he's busy at work. We can't wait for her to come and visit again!
Today the twins turn 23 months! One month away from being big two year olds. I'm not sure I'm ready for you two to be that old already. Where is the time going?! Guess I better get started on making party decorations for your Mickey and Minnie Mouse birthday theme!
23 Month Stats:
Kate - 30 lbs
Matthew - 27 lbs
December 27th - January 27th
* This month you learned the shapes: star, heart, triangle, and diamond. You already knew circle(which still are your favorite) and square. You love to have us draw the shapes and you tell us what we drew or you will say the shape for us to draw. You also love to have us draw a bunch of the same shape and then count how many there are total.
* Along with your shapes, you have started to identify them in your environment. For example, you will point to our watch and say circle, a tile on the kitchen floor and say square, or the doctors swivel stool seat and say circle. It's so fun to watch you put all of your knowledge together and link it to other things around you.
* You can now count to 12 and sometimes to 15 but with help.
* A few times I have overheard you count backwards from 10 to 1! Awesome Katers!!!
* You like to point at our face and locate and name: eyes, nose, and mouth.
* You didn't want to fall asleep as well this month as you normally do. Not sure if being back over Christmas got you off your normal routine, you got scared at some point, or because of your teething it difficult for you. It has taken almost a month after Christmas to get you to fall asleep without crying a lot in your crib first. Definitely hard to hear you cry so hard when we weren't use to you doing that, plus, you started to cry out for us saying Momma and Daddy while crying. Hearing you say our names made the whole crying experience even harder for both dad and myself.
* Love to look at family pictures and name everyone in it.
* Can say pretty much anything we tell ask you to.
* Still love animals. Love to name them, locate them, and make their animal sounds. Cows are still your favorite animal.
* You and Matthew did a complete role reversal this month and now you have become the hard, crazy one to dress and change your diaper. You put up a fight not wanting to sit still or kick your feet.
* Greets me in the morning saying, "Good morning, Mama!"
* Loves to bounce on the couch or throw all of the pillows off or stack them into a big pile.
* Per recommendation from your Peds doctor, we took you to a Peds Gastroenterologist doctor to help figure out your constipation problem. At the end of Dec./beginning of Jan. you especially were having difficulties and were not going for at least 8 or 9 days. We have been struggling with constipation since you were a baby. We had tried Miralax and some prescription laxatives but had no consistent luck. The first part of January, Mommy took you to the Gastroenterologist. They took blood work to rule out some food allergies, diabetes, and thyroid and luckily the results can back normal. As of right now, the doctor wants us to go back to using Miralax but this time up your dose until I find the magic mixture for you. We are to try that for the next couple months. To also help you I have you take a pro-biotic once a day and you visited the Chiropractor for the first time. So far you have gone twice and he's had luck with getting an adjustment in the area of the back that controls the digestive track. Since doing all of these tactics, we've had overal good luck. Definitely hard to find that "magic dose" that doesn't have you go too much (we had some of those days!!) or cutting back and then not going for days again. We are hopeful and just are excited your able to go without struggle or pain.
* Last week you went back to Iowa with Mommy and Matthew since Daddy is busy at work. Of course, both you and Matthew started feeling sick while we were there and so we took you into the doctor. You had an ear infection, sinus infection, and strep throat. This is your first time with strep throat. I was thinking your ears were bothering you, and have been bothering you for most of the month so I was glad you finally went to the doctor to have them checked out. Hopefully after your ear infection is cleared that will also contribute to helping you sleep better.
* The four of us went to Look Out Ridge (an indoor play area) for a Saturday for the first time. You weren't too adventurous at first, but you decided to finally warm up right before we left. You also were struggling with needing to poop. We knew you were close so we decided that was a good time to leave. Good thing we did because on our way back home you had a BIG blow-out in the car seat! It was a crazy, hectic time of cleaning you and our car up once we got home!
* You celebrated your 2nd New Year's with Great Aunt Mary and Heimy.
* Aunt Jenny came to visit and was able to attend your Friday ECFE class with us.
December 27th - January 27th
* Climbed out of the pack n' play at Grandma and Grandpa Willms' house over Christmas. Luckily Daddy caught you since you were going head first. No more pack n' plays now.
* Mastering puzzles - moves the piece around until it fits into the space correctly. You do get frustrated if you don't figure it out fast enough and then you throw the piece. Ugh...let the 2's begin.
* Making progress with your speech is working on your sounds. Can say: bye, see ya, hi, momma, please, fries, bounce, and cheese. And you can hear you try and say: "1,2,3 Go!" and "Ready, Set, Go!" Both are phrases your working on in speech. Also has been counting...we can tell he is saying the numbers while counts his figures or objects. Can make out the numbers one and two the best.
* Played in the snow for the first time with Grandma Joyce back in Iowa over Christmas break.
* You love to play with your new kitchen set you got for Christmas from Gma and Gpa Dufel.
* Along with your speech, you're so much better at saying the beginning sound of words with the letters b, p, and d. We can definitely hear those constant sounds.
* Likes to drink out of a regular glass and does pretty well with it now.
* Loves to help me with household chores: throws away trash, wipes up the floor, tries to fold clothes, uses my broom to sweep, grabs napkins off the table to clean his own face, ect. My little helper!
* Got an electric toothbrush to help with having the sensation in the back of his mouth per recommendation from the Speech O.T.
* Great lately at laying still for diaper changes and getting dressed!!! You and Kate have switched places. You also have been an all-star sleeper and been going to bed like a champ! Sometimes I hear you and Kate jabbering back and forth to each other until one of you falls asleep.
* Getting better at having the water poured over your head during bathtime. A lot less tears!
* Still loves light switches and will climb up onto anything or use anything to reach the light switch. If we pass one you see you will cry and point back at it and will do that until we take you back to it to turn it on.
* Hasn't been interested in drinking milk this past month. All you want is water or juice.
* You went back to Iowa for a week with Mommy and Kate and stayed at Grandma and Grandpa Dufel's house. While we were there, of course, you got sick and we had to take you and Kate into the doctors. You had a sinus infection and were treated for strep throat.
* Aunt Jenny came to visit and went to your Friday ECFE class with us.
* You celebrated your 2nd New Year's with Great Aunt Mary and Heimy.
* Had your 3rd haircut and Aunt Jenny got to go along. Thankful for Mickey Mouse and suckers...those two helped keep you busy and not scared. You now love suckers!