Friday, July 27, 2007

Ebay Smeeebay

I've been outbid and outbid and outbid - seven times over!
I was trying to buy this:

The girls have gained enough mobility to get feet and arms stuck in the bars of their cribs whenever they burst free of their swaddles. Lodged appendedges = Screaming = Sleep loss for all. With all the SIDs information saying to stay away from normal bumpers, this leaves just the Breathable Bumper to stop the late night lodging.

I thought I get myself a deal on ebay and buy some used bumpers - um - no! People are willing to pay almost what you'd pay for a new bumper - which makes getting a deal impossible! I thought this afternoon I had finally gotten a deal and with 9 seconds left, I was outbid! Ruthless! Alex tells me that is the way it goes on ebay - I guess I've got to practice my last minute bidding skills.

However, I've given up on the bumpers, and paid full price for them at The bumper I was bidding on this afternoon went for $16.49 + $6.00 shipping. I bought the same one (BRAND NEW) for $24.99 and got free shipping!

Now I'm bidding on a baby gate - and I'm ever hopeful - my bid is 1/8 of the item's retail value...but it is still 6 days out and apparently a lot can happen between now and then - especially in the last nine seconds!

Beg, Borrow, & Steal

This is what you learn as a parent - no one expert is a perfect match for your family - instead you must beg, borrow, and steal various pieces of advice from multiple sources, sift through it, and try to come up with a match for your child or children in our case! We've been working on the sleeping through the night saga...with limited success. We've tried crying it out - they like to cry it out all night - seriously - they have no limit - or they'll fall asleep - and cry it out all over again the next hour! We've tried scheduling which is supposed to put them in a well-rested happy state of mind ready for bed - eager for no. We've tried "tanking them up" with extra feedings just before bedtime - apparently we cannot tank enough to get them to sleep through the night.

So what we've been doing (for the past two nights *subject to change at any moment) is a combination of all of the above.

Step 1: I work really hard during the day to make sure they get their naps and their calories (Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child).

Step 2: Put to bed swaddled and with a pacifer (Happiest Baby on the Block).

Step 3: We tank them up with a "dream feed" (Baby Whisper) at 9:00. This means while they are asleep (bedtime 7:30) we put a bottle in their bottles - they eat without waking up - Jasmine is especially impressive clearing 5-6 oz. without as so much opening an eyelid!

Step 4: Then we have decided to feed one time in the night - and do that whenever one twin wakes up - we feed both usually around 3:30 am. Then if anyone cries after this point - they "cry it out" (Ferberize or Babywise)

This complicated system has so far stopped them from the all night "niggling" waking up every 1-2 hours. We have managed to get decent sleep the last two nights and will be holding to this routine unless all havoc breaks out again...which it most likely will!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

A Pleasant Weekend

It is amazing how the girls can have no interest in a toy one minute, and then give it a few days/weeks and they are all about it! I tried these clip on activity arches a few weeks ago and all I got were bored stares. I tried them again last week, and I got coos, smiles, laughes, etc.! Both girls just stared and stared at the brightly colored animals and have each begun practicing their batting/grabbing skills. We love watching them get so engrossed, especially as they try to gain control of their hands!

Although this picture makes it look like it, no, Addision does not have her ear pierced! However, she does finally have enough hair for Daddy to style!

Here's Alex with both girls! They love it when he gets home from work and follow him with their eyes all around the room.

This was the biggest event of the weekend. We took the girls swimming for the first time at the neighborhood pool. It was so much fun! Jasmine LOVED it! She was happy just as soon as she hit the water - she kicked, wriggled, floated until it was time to go. When we took her out - she SCREAMED! Addision, on the otherhand, took a little bit longer to adjust. She spent most of the first time in the pool with her lip quivering. She seemed much happier today when we took them back for a second round!

Try not to be distracted by all the chest hair! : )

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Incredible Video

This video brings tears to my eyes. It is a good reminder of how distracted and far from God we can get in our lives... It is also scary to think about our girls being teenagers one day and facing all the difficult choices you are presented with at that age. I am so grateful that God never gets tired of persuing us - no matter how far we get away - no matter how many bad decisions we've made!

Hope you all are having a good weekend! We tried "crying it out" last night for the first time on the recommendation of Amy and Katherine. And all we have to say is "THANK YOU!" It worked like a charm! Our game plan was to let them cry for 15 minutes then go in and console. It only took one time with Addie - and a few more with Jasmine - but they both made it through the night without eating and weren't even starving this morning - had their regular amount! We are hoping that this is the beginning of a new leaf for the girls!

Friday, July 20, 2007

Your Input

First off - this is an open solicitation for advice - please give us some advice on getting babies to sleep through the night - and at what age it is appropriate to begin such techniques! We've read some - tried some things - and are feeling like we are making little head way. We are getting looootttss of night waking unrelated to hunger/dirty diaper/etc. We still feed once a night and really would be happy doing that if the girls weren't waking before and after they ate multiple times! So bring on the advice - we are asking!

On other random notes, I sit here staring jealously at my dogs as they nap on the sofa, but then I remember that I get to ride in the car with the windows down whenever I want!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Another First

Today was the first time I walked the girls by myself in the stroller! You might think that this event should have occured sooner...but it really is more difficult than it looks. Everytime Alex and I have tried to take a walk with the girls, one of the girls ends up screaming and seriously unhappy. We then have to hold one child for the rest of the walk, or stop and feed either one or both of the girls.

The thing I think made the difference today was I put them in the stroller without their carseats, since they have some head control I thought they might be more able to stay upright. They get very hot very quickly in their carseats and I think sans carseats both girls were happier and cooler! It also helped that I took them walking just after they had woken up from a nap - when they tend to be happiest!

They LOVED the walk! I stopped a few times and walked around front so I could see their faces, and they were both wide-eyed taking in their surrounding. An added bonus was that strapping one dog to each side of the stroller wasn't a problem at all! They both kept pace with the stroller and were happy to get out of the house! The only time Jasmine cried was when we stopped for a bit so Belle could "use the facilities"~!

Getting out of the house and getting some exercise definitely gave me the mood lift I needed! I may even try another walk this afternoon! : )

Friday, July 13, 2007

A Night at Home

It is wonderful to have a night go smoothly with the girls - and even more enjoyable when it is Friday night and you get to watch a movie with your husband - and it is a good movie - not a movie you thought would be good and then turns out to be strange and twisted. I think we felt somewhat comfortable in our new lives tonight. Dinner was timed just right to be eaten as the girls went to bed. Alex got both girls bathed and tucked in before 8:00 pm. The dogs didn't chase each other around like mad banshees and destroy the evening calm - it was a good night. We watched Miss Potter and it was my kind of movie - the kind that leaves you sitting in a peaceful happy calm state of mind. We had a goodnight and hope you did too!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Aren't We Beautiful

Our Favorite Men

Grandpa Baker bravely babysat both girls by himself on Tuesday night for nearly two hours! I was very impressed!

Addison loves to tour the house with Dad via a Baby Bjorn when Dad is around on the weekends!

Addie's Big Achievement

Addison can now roll over! The amusing part is that she tries and tries and finally rolls over - and then cries because she doesn't want to be on her stomach! : ) I guess she doesn't get the whole cause and effect part of rolling over - rolling over = laying on stomach! : )

Monday, July 09, 2007

Fourth of July

We drove up to Kansas City with my parents to celebrate the holiday with my mom's side of the family. It had been a long time since we had all been together in one place! It was fun to be with all of my cousins, brother and sister-in-law and their friends, and meet my cousin Nik and his wife Emily's new baby boy Nathanael (who was born shortly after our girls). We even had our own fireworks display put together by my cousin David. The girls found the whole event too exciting to sleep - so Alex and I were a bit weary on the drive home - but nonetheless, we had a great time and love our extended family very much! Thanks so much for all your extra hands with the girls as well!

Monday, July 02, 2007

Um...Scratch That!

So...after I wrote the post about napping, I decided I'd give it another go. I put the girls down for an afternoon nap in their room. The one critical element I included this time was...drumroll...I swaddled them like we do at night...and...drumroll...I had to wake them up after two hours!!!!!! So we may be slow learners, but at least we keep trying, right?! I guess I'll continue to perfect the napping thing...but I'm definitely feeling more hopeful. Oh! And ironically (sarcasm) they were actually happy babies after their nice long nap - it was lovely! Did I mention they are napping again right now?!!! I was reading on a development e-mail I get that 3-4 month old babies can nap 3 times a day for 2 or so hours each time. It was crazy to have free time again - I ate my lunch in peace, put away laundry, paid bills, and even painted my toenails! I think I'm on a "my babies are napping simultaneously" high!

No Naps

Yesterday was a day of no naps for Jasmine - and it wasn't pretty from about 4pm onward! We had a seriously confused child - she'd be crying, then smiling, yawning, then screaming all within a few minutes of each other. Try as we might, we could not get her to fall asleep until her bedtime at 8pm. Lesson learned: Although weekends have different schedules than weekdays - make sure naps happen!

We are still trying to figure out how to have a napping schedule. Right now, the girls do everything in the living room during the day. I know they should be napping the nursery, but the problem is than that I end up with the girls in seperate rooms simultaneously screaming as I try to settle one. I've been reading that they'd nap longer if they were in a quiet, dark room...and didn't have the dogs barking and running by on their way to chase a squirrel! Still trying to figure this one out...especially since Jasmine doesn't sleep as well as Addison since it seems her reflux wakes her up more frequently.

We are going to celebrate the 4th with my mom's family in K.C. on Wednesday - the girls first overnight trip.
Here's a just a starter list of all the gear we have to bring:

2 swings (they sleep in them at night due to the acid reflux)
2 bouncy seats (daytime sanity savers)
2 carseats
1 double stroller
10+ outfits due to the volumes of spit up and poop splatters we may encounter
2 Baby Bjorns
one LOUD fan we use for white noise
baby moniter

As insane as this list feels doable since we are going in my parents' large van. What I am concerned about is our upcoming trip to Canada in the beginning of September. The fact that we are flying severely limits the amount of baby gear we will be able to bring!

The girls aren't a big fan of "tummy time" - I keep subjecting them and myself to their screaming and squirming in hopes that I don't delay their crawling! : ) I've heard that babies with reflux are less likely to want to be on their bellies...more painful I guess for them.

Anyway...Happy Monday!