Valentines 2015

Valentines 2015

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A new path?

I've been kind of an absent blogger...sorry...

Something has been weighing on my mind for about a month now...

Staying home with my girls

When I went back to work 10 weeks after the girls were born I was honestly a little relieved. I had some "me" time back. I was something other than "the twins mom" for 10 hours a day, 4 days a week. I could go to work without worrying about the girls. I had a fabulous, fully capable nanny for 3 days a week, and my awesome dad for the other day. I was off on Wednesday's, so between Wednesday's and the weekend, I had 3 days off to spend with the girls. Ideal, right?


I liked this set up. I would venture to say it was almost perfect. Until about a month ago....the girls now know that I'm leaving. They know that I'm gone. They sometimes cry when I leave. I don't want to leave.

This is becoming the common scene whenever I leave to go anywhere (work, the store, etc.)

Insert sad face here!

I'm the breadwinner at this point. I've been working in the same government job for 4+ years, and it's been great. I make good money, carry the health insurance, have a good benefits plan with awesome time off.

But my contract ends in June...then what?

Are there other options for me to keep working? Sure!
Is the money guaranteed to be the same? Not a chance.
Are these positions within the VA where I am now? Probably not.
Would I have to start all over with my time off, switch insurance, and move to a different location? Very likely.
Do I want to do this? No.

For the first time, I don't want to advance myself. I want to be with my children.

And this is a STRONG desire....not just yeah maybe that would be cool, but like, this is what I am supposed to be doing desire. We worked SO hard to get these girls here and they are growing up SO fast...I almost feel like I am missing it. And I regret that. I don't want to have regrets.

The bigger piece of this puzzle is money (of course). We just can't afford for me to stay home all the time. I would have to take some sort of job doing something. So we are thinking about our options.

One thing that Si has wanted to do for years and years is be an IA (Independent Adjuster) for catastrophies (hurricane's, floods, tornados, etc.) and travel to where the storms are and work on assessing damage and helping people get their lives back together. I had always told him no before. I wouldn't be able to deal with him being gone for weeks or months on end multiple times a year. But now I'm seriously considering it.

We could go with him.
All of us.
Even the pugs.
24-7 with the girls and the pugs.
I could help do the IA stuff too, so we could work twice as quickly. (okay, or with the girls, maybe 1.33333 x more
We would get to travel to where the disasters were (something we wouldn't be able to do once the girls are in school).
We would be helping people get their lives back together.
We could make the money situation work.
We would only work 1/2 to 2/3 (ish) of the year (in theory of course), and would be "off" the rest of the time

The negatives?
We would be away from our family and friends
We would get zero breaks together from the girls
We would never know where we were going next or how long we would be gone
I would really have to learn how to budget.

So this is the battle that is going on in my mind right now...and with all of the party planning, there hasn't been as much time to blog. The big banana birthday extravaganza is next Saturday - oye! I hope I'll be ready!

We made a trip to the apple orchard today with our parents of multiples group, and the girlies had a great time =). Here's the girls trying to figure out why we had parked their stroller in the middle of an apple tree. No worries...they figured it out...they each got to pick out 3 apples, and now mommy gets to make them their own batch of applesauce! YAY!

So that's all for now (like that isn't enough!)...hope you are having a happy hump day!

Until next time -

Thursday, September 15, 2011

11 Months...=)

I literally feel like I just wrote the girls 10 month post last week. Now 11 months? What? Crazy. Another month gone. WOW.

So what's new at 11 months with the girlies? Well, let's see!
Overall, the girls are more mobile than ever. Usually they have one speed (crazy fast) and are going in two different directions. If they go in the same direction, it's likely towards something they aren't supposed to have (a power cord, a straight shot to the stairs, daddy's cell phone, etc.).

They are back to eating like champs, as long as they aren't being fed anything green. Sad. I thought they would continue to like veggies until they got a little older at least! Now they won't touch any of it...unless it's totally pureed...bummer! Otherwise they are eating just about everything that we eat. Tonight they had BBQ ribs, sweet potatoes, and corn. They loved it! Last night they had spaghetti and garlic bread. I love not having to cook separately just for them!

In looking at pictures from 6 weeks ago compared to now I can tell that the girls have started to slim down significantly. I went to Carters 2 weeks ago and stocked up on all of the fall essentials for the girls in size 18 month (as we were so there...12 month clothes barely fit)...but now we are back to fitting perfectly in the 12 month clothes and swimming in the 18 month. Of course, the girls started losing some of their baby fat after I bought them a new fall wardrobe! HA!

So, moving are the specifics for each girl for 11 months:

Miss Olivia (aka - baby A)

Favorite activity: Cruising the furniture, playing in the water, hanging out with her daddy
Mobility: She is cruising like a wild woman! She will take a couple of steps between two pieces of furniture, but can not walk unassisted yet. She is making an effort to stand unassisted, so it's just a matter of time before she is walking. Crawling is still her preferred mode of transportation.
Favorite food: Spaghetti, cheesy bread, and mama milk =)
Personality: Drama Queen! And very outgoing. Is waving at everyone, especially daddy, mommy, and sister first thing in the morning and any time any one leaves the room or the building (LOL). Wants to be involved in everything that is going on. Definitely very observant. Also very smiley =).
Favorite Person: Still Daddy!
Words: Da-da, ma-ma, hey, yep, ut oh

Miss Brianna - aka "Baby B"

Favorite activity: Anything having to do with water - trying to get into the bathtub while mommy is in the shower, playing in the dog water, splashing and playing in the pool and bath. Oh yes, and flushing the toilet. This is a new skill she learned two days ago. GREAT!
Mobility: So close to walking. She can balance herself unassisted for several seconds, but can't quite get the concept to take a step. Is a great furniture cruiser. Still prefers crawling to any other mode of transportation. Well, other than being picked up and carried around...that is by far her preference...
Favorite food: Mashed potatoes! LOVES them! And cheese. And mama's milk. Yup, these are so my children! LOL!
Personality: Shy/Reserved. Will smile at and interact with you, but has to warm up to you first. Loves to be around others. Does not often enjoy being the center of attention. Loves to chatter away while she is eating - so cute now - but something we will have to work on in the future I suspect =)
Favorite Person: Usually Mommy, but Aunt Denise and Miss Whit give her a run for her money!
Words: Da-da, Ma-Ma, yep, oh, yaba daba doo (I kid you not, but there is no way she says this on purpose), and thank you

Sigh...less than one month before our little peanuts are 1!! We are in the thick of party planning here! The theme? Monkeys! Our little monkeys are turning 1 and we are going to celebrate! And Stephanie, thanks for the gentle nudging towards Etsy! That is one dangerous site for me! I have found so much stuff on there that I MUST have - LOL!

I will leave you with a question - what do you guys think for birthday attire? Dresses? Personalized first birthday onsies? Tutu's? What is the "correct" attire for a first birthday? I was leaning towards dresses, but we don't have any specific dresses at this point that we would wear, so then I was leaning towards first birthday onsies and maybe a tutu, but I don't want to be too casual either (and I don't know how they will react to tutu's). Thoughts?

Until next time -

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Happy Grandparent's Day AND Patriot's Day

I know that it's the 10 year anniversary of 9/11, and we all remember where we were, how it affected us, and what has changed since that time. I hope future generations are able to appreciate 9/11 as well...but I don't want to rehash it on my blog. Instead, I would like to focus on National Grandparent's Day!!

National Grandparent's Day is a bit different this year, as instead of focusing on my grandparents, I'm focusing on the girls grandparents!

My parents, Pat and Ken, live in Omaha. My AWESOME dad watches the girls 1 day every week while I am at work. They absolutely LOVE him. It's precious! After his scare with encapsulated kidney cancer last year, it made us all cherish the time that we spend with each other. I am so glad the girls get the opportunity to spend this much time with him!! My mom has made it her mission to find the cutest dresses EVER and get them for the girls. She also has a thing with rattles too...she finds the coolest most bizarre rattles ever....the girls have quite the collection!

Si's parents, Leslie and Dale, live in Kearney and North Platte, respectively. Leslie makes the trek down to Omaha to visit the girlies at least once a month and they absolutely adore her! They also chat with her on the phone on a regular basis and just smile and giggle from ear to ear! Dale makes his way down to Omaha about once every 2 months. The girls are always tickled pink to see him! Speaking of, he should be down later this week again I think. YAY! A visit from Grandpa!

Happy Grandparent's Day Pat, Ken, Leslie, and Dale!! The girls love you all!!!

Until next time -

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Fall is coming, oh my!

I know that Labor Day is the "unofficial" end of summer, but every year I try to squeeze every last ounce of summer out of the season. I wear white after Labor Day, and I refuse to take off my open toed shoes until the snow falls. Yup, I'm THAT kind of girl.

Si on the other hand hates summer and can't wait until fall. Fall to him signals the start of football, cooler weather, and no longer having to mow the grass (LOL).

This year we celebrated Labor Day by heading off to Memorial Park to try and get some pictures of the girls in their cute little sleeveless dresses next to some flowers before fall came and swept their beautiful blooms away.


Admittedly, Si was the one to snap some of the best pictures we got, but to cheer me up, he quickly reminded me that the reason the girls were smiling was because they could see me and were smiling at me, instead of me hiding behind the camera. =). So that made me feel better.

Here are some of the pictures we got. And I learned. . .photography is WAY harder than it looks! The first two rounds of pics that I took were in the direct sun and were shadowy and funky, and the third round was taken in the shade - perhaps not quite enough light? This is tricky I tell you! (Any photography buffs out there, please feel free to provide guidance...I'm learning as I go!)

The girlies in the sun, Bri on the left, Livvy on the right

The girls in the shade - Livvy on the left, Bri on the right

I love that last picture! They seemed so much happier in the shade!

So what did you do on your long weekend???

Until next time -

Monday, September 5, 2011

Mommy and Me Monday

It's been a long time since I've done Mommy and Me Monday! We were out and about enjoying the GORGEOUS weather today and taking pictures of the girls in the park. Si, unbeknownst to me, snapped these pictures of me playing with the girls. I love them!

Hope you guys had an awesome Labor Day Monday too!!!

Until next time -

Sunday, September 4, 2011

To pump, or not to pump?

The girls are quickly approaching their 1 year birthday and with that comes the question of whether or not to continue my pumping and nursing escapades. And they are escapades.

My entire daytime schedule is built around nursing and pumping. Get up, nurse. Then pump. Shower. Go to work. Pump. Wait three hours, pump again. Pump one more time before I leave work. Come home, have dinner as a family. Play. Bathtime. Pump again. Watch a couple of shows. Shower. Pump again. Watch the news. Go to bed. That's my daily pumping schedule in a nutshell.

I have an entire second set of pumping gear at work. I have two pumps - a Medela Pump in Style and a Medela Freestyle. I have battery packs, I have car lighter adapters, I have spare parts galore. I have about a gazillion many that the nanny has a hard time making them all fit in the cupboard when she does the dishes (LOL).

To say I am well equipped may be the understatement of the year.

As you learned in my last post, by the time the girls are 12 months old I will have spent two months (60 days) solid pumping and/or breastfeeding. I LOVE that I can provide my girls such a wonderful form of nourishment. LOVE it. But, it is incredibly time consuming, and it is obvious now that the girls are mobile that it takes Si's full attention and energy to divert the girls away from me for 30 minutes 4-7x a day while I am pumping. I can tell he is irritated and is ready for me to be done. After all, there are things he can't get done around the house because he can't do anything while I am pumping (laundry, mow the yard, etc. simply because I can't watch the girls while I am attached to my pump).

And I get it.

So, in 5 short weeks the girls will have hit 12 months old, and my breastfeeding or pumping days can come to an end.
But what if I want to keep going?
Bri has become a good morning breastfeeder again, and I absolutely cherish the one on one quiet time I get with her when she nurses.
Additionally, the benefits of breastfeeding may go down when they hit a year, but they don't go away. I would think it would be beneficial for the girls to have my immunity through say, cold and flu season, wouldn't it?

But is it worth THAT much time spent being married to the pump??? I just don't know. I am trying to decide whether to:
1) Stop at the girls 1 year birthday (next month)
2) Stop at the girls adjusted 1 year old birthday (November 11th)
3) Stop after cold and flu season (maybe March?)

I mean, I would love to have my body back (and wear normal bras and tanktops), but if breastmilk is still beneficial to the girls, I want to do what is best for them! If it were you, what would you do?

As always, comments and opinions are welcome and appreciated!

I will leave you with a picture of Daddy holding the girls while they (appropriate to this discussion) enjoy the fruits of my labor =)

Until next time -