Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Years Eve

Kate and Connor haven't been themselves today. Connor just whimpered to be held all day. Even food wouldn't settle hime down (which is very un-Connor like). Kate did pretty well until later in the day when she started fussing too. Maybe it's still the shots from Monday that have them out of sorts??? Anyway - Nanna and I decided that a nice long car ride would do the trick to settle them down.

We drove up to Kennesaw to check out Total Wine. It's a new liquor store to the Atlanta area and it has over 6000 types of wine and something like 2000 beers. I thought it would be nice to get a bottle of Ridge Lytton Springs Zinfandel to go with our Moet and Chandon Champagne for New Years Eve. I guess I didn't think about how it would look to be pushing around a stroller with infant twins in a LIQUOR store. Maybe some eyebrows were raised about why mom is drinking sooo much (yes, we had a case of wine and a case of beer). Oh well! Sandy the cashier was very sweet and helped speed us on our way out the door.

Later, we had a fabulous dinner at home with Nanna, Poppa, Hugh and me. We had shrimp and cocktail sauce, crab cakes, New York Strip steak, baked potato, creamed spinach and caesar salad. For dessert we had Key Lime pie and coffee. Of course, the Ridge, Moet as well as a Giesen Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough NZ. Glad no one was driving!

Now we just have to stay awake until midnight. OK - even if we fall asleep - we have to wake up at midnight so Kate and Connor can get their gourmet meal of .... FORMULA!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

We love friends to come by!

Hays and her mom Jane, as well as Hays' son Hunter came by to visit this afternoon. Jane hadn't met Kate and Connor before - so it was great to see her take to the babies so well. Also - I have to get the names of the baby boutiques where she buys Hunters' clothes. Note to self: Kate and Connor are in well worn, pilled Carters outfits. Hunter is in a waaay cute smocked short set. Too cute!

Meanwhile, Poppa was playing with Hunter. Finally - he relinquished Hunter to me so I could see what it's like to hold an 18+ pound baby. Wow! We have a lot to look forward to with an energetic boy like Hunter. It's so cute to watch him sit up by himself and he is getting ready to take off crawling any day now. I don't want to wish Kate and Connor to grow up too quickly, but I can't wait for them to get to a more interactive stage.

Then Susan and Cary came by to visit too. They had last seen the twins when they were 4 days old (at Northside) - so they were certainly impressed with Kate and Connor's growth. We were excited to learn that their daughter Bianca just found out that she is pregnant with her second child. I'm sure they are over the moon with happyiness for their growing family.

Nineteen years in the making!

Today, Hugh and I celebrate our 19 year wedding anniversary. I still remember that on the night of our wedding, all of our brothers and sisters bet on how fast we'd start a family. I don't think any of the bets were longer than 3 or 5 years. FAKE!

We actually took 18+ years to get pregnant with Connor and Kate. Talk about worth the wait!!!! We love you Connor and Kate!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Oh my - BIG babies!

We went to Dr. B today for our 2 month check ups. Kate and Connor are actually 9 weeks old and yet just 6 weeks past their official due date. I guess we'll call that 2 months.

Poppa came along on this visit to meet the Doctor and check out the practice. Once a pediatrician, always a pediatrician.

Connor is always the one to impress the Doc - so during the exam, he gave us his first full roll-over on his own from his tummy to his back. What a clever boy! Kate tried hard and almost rolled over - but kept re-steadying herself as she started to roll. Maybe that's even more clever??

Anyway - the babies had their weigh in and already need to start on a diet. Connor is 22.5 inches long (50th percentile), but 13 pounds and 9 oz (90th percentile). Kate is 21.5 inches long (25 percentile), but 12 pounds and 3 oz (75th percentile). So - Dr. B has made an exception to her own guidelines and says we can add water to the babies' formula to help monitor and lower their weight gain.

Then, the babies each had 5 shots plus an oral vaccine. It was sad to see them screech so loudly - but it is for the best. Nanna and I took them for a walk and they were conked out. The "good" news is that they slept most of the rest of the day and didn't want to eat much. Good for the diet - bad for Mom to worry over them.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

We're 2 months old

We're trying to take a picture each month on the 27th to show how the twins are growing. Here's the December 27th photo.

Compare that to the November 27th photo at Thanksgiving and then...

...the October 27th photo from Northside Hospital in the Operating room...Wow!

The bowls begin

We went over to Aunt Shirley's late today to watch the Champs Bowl in Orlando - FSU vs Wisconsin. FSU beat Wisconsin - but I don't think Connor or Kate even noticed. They were too busy crashing out with Aunt Shirley, Cousin Lauren and Nanna.

Another walk - Christmas is still with us

We received a very sweet gift from Claudia and Dan today - personalized stroller blankets for Kate and Connor. One is dark blue and the other is a deep rose - so nice! Each blanket has their full name, birth date, weight and length. How sweet is that? So - I loaded up the stroller, the new blankets and we went for a walk.

While we were walking, I was telling Connor and Kate about the spirit of Christmas and that it lasts so much more than one day. Look at all these nice people who took the time to decorate their mailbox for all their neighbors to enjoy!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Our first Christmas dinner

It was so nice to have Aunt Anne-Maree here with her beau James. I wish she lived closer to be able to see the babies grow up in person. Hopefully - the blog will let her have a better peek in to the twins daily lives.

Later in the day, we went to Aunt Shirley and Uncle Michael's for a nice family dinner. Shirley cooked up a storm with prime rib, popovers, carrots and parsnips, and mashed potatoes. For dessert we had Christmas plum pudding and maple pecan pie.

What did the babies eat? Formula! What a rip off. Don't babies get bored with formula? Maybe there is a market for flavored formulas. I'm thinking chocolate or banana???

Nanna and Poppa were sure glad to see the babies. It was great that Uncle Chris could be there too. And just to make sure the day was complete, Uncle Ross and Aunt Roxie called.

We're already making Cantwell family plans for Nanna's 80th (the twins will be 16 months old by then!)

But for now - we enjoy today and the knowledge that this is indeed the best Christmas ever!

Our first Christmas morning!

The best gift dear old Mom and Dad could ever have is Connor and Kate! Hugh and I enjoyed our first Christmas breakfast as a family. We sat by the Christmas tree in the breakfast room and sipped coffee while we fed the babies their bottles. I'm quite the emotional one these days and the whole effect had me misting up with joy over-flowing in my heart.

And the best gifts that Kate and Connor gave their Mom and Dad this week are SMILES! Both Kate and Connor have decided that they can now smile for us - especially in the middle of the night feedings or when their diapers are being changed. It's certainly the best gift EVER.

Christmas was so sad just one year ago - and now it's perfect and complete. We're so blessed to have Kate and Connor safe and sound and here with us.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

The family started gathering to celebrate the day together. Anne-Maree and James were here, then Nanna, Poppa, Chris, Shirley, Michael, Kevin and Lauren. Yes - even Buddy came long to the O'Farrell manse for his first visit.

While everyone went to church, I stayed at home working on the big dinner (turkey, gravy, sausage stuffing, sweet potatoes, cranberry relish and green beans). Hugh went in search of more wine (much needed!).

But first, though, time for one more walk through the neighborhood - dropping off Christmas cards and telling Connor and Kate about the wonderful neighborhood decorations.

Finally, we gathered for dinner - delicious! It was especially nice that it was Christmas Eve AND James' birthday. So - Anne-Maree made a "best ever" carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. Yum! Next year, Connor and Kate will be able to eat birthday cake too!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Family dinner at Brio

Aunt Anne-Maree gave us the gift of time together this year. She hosted a dinner in Buckhead at Brio Italian Grille. We had a great dinner with Connor and Kate dressed in their Christmas outfits. Nanna, Poppa, Aunt Shirley, Uncle Michael, Cousins Kevin and Lauren were there - along with me and Hugh.

Just when I though we had it all going on, I realized that in my fabulous diaper bag we had bottles, formula, burp clothes and bibs - but NO NIPPLES! Uncle Michael to the rescue! He ran out to Publix supermarket and bought to nipples to help us make it through the dinner without a meltdown. While it was a totally different brand and system - we improvised and the babies were soon enjoying their "meal" at the same time the rest of us were. Crisis averted!

And it was especially sweet to see both Hugh and Michael doing so much of the baby feedings. Who said men weren't in touch with their sensitive sides?

Monday, December 22, 2008

A twin meets the twins

Susan S. came by to meet the twins today. Susan is herself a twin - she has a fraternal sister. We enjoyed having her meet Kate and Connor and reminisce about being a twin and the good, bad and ugly of it all growing up.

Note to self: don't dress the twins a like!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Sleep schedule

We're now on our 4th night of trying to work towards a sleep schedule. That seems like a good idea, right? Yet Kate and Connor seem to disagree. While we're doing better, it's still tough for the night shift. Just hoping that after a week or so, the twins figure this out with me.

Here's a picture of us crashed out from earlier today. Note Kate's cute Mary Jane socks from KJ?

Friday, December 19, 2008

Aunt Anne visits on her birthday

Aunt Anne and Uncle Patrick came by with yet MORE gifts for the babies. I thought it was HER birthday and that we should have gifts for HER (ok - we did that too!).

Anne brought some really precious reindeer hats that are meant to fit babies up through 6 months old. The hat fit Kate (barely), but Connor's "double yellow" prohibited the hat from fitting on him.

Good news was that the "I Love New York" bibs fit them both - so that was perfect!

Uncle Gar, Aunt Ruth and Cousin Kevin didn't come today since Aunt Ruth has been sick. We're so glad to have family live close enough to be able to visit and hope we can see everyone more.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

We're chow hounds

7 weeks and 2 days old and we keep eating and growing! Connor weighed 12lb and 13 oz today, and Kate was up to 11 lbs and 5 oz. I didn't think formula toasted that good to eat that much!

Twins meet Michelle G.

Michelle came by to meet the twins at lunch today. She brought Kate and Connor 2 precious outfits (and no - they weren't Steelers outfits or even Steelers colors).

It was good to see Michelle again and see that she's recovering so well from so many health issues and scares. Reminds me that we are all blessed to have our health!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Later, we cruised by Costco. This was my first shopping expedition with the twins by myself. I didn't have it all planned out - but it worked. People were very nice to me and a sweet lady let me go in front of her in a long checkout line... she said you never know when babies may have a melt down.
Note to self: You can't push a cart when you are pushing a double stroller. bring something to hold the groceries in that can attach to the stroller.

Then, still going on good luck, we went for the twins to meet Dr. Mitchell-Leef. She and the staff (Nancy, Mary, Stephanie, Bonnie, and Tonia and "the ultrasound ladies") were all so pleased to meet the twins. It was fun having their footprints made in purple and orange ink on the big art board where they celebrate all of their success stories. These are indeed success stories!

Tonight, we started trying to work towards a better sleep routine. I'm sure it will be a mess for a few weeks, but we better start now.

Visiting with the nice people from Home Depot

Kate and Connor had a big day today visiting with the nice people at Home Depot. While they slept for the first hour or so, then they woke up and had a lot of fun. Connor flirted with all of the ladies, but made a huge (new) smile for Kelly B. Kelly S. was able to get a great smile out of Kate. Enough to melt my heart!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Stephanie visits

Stephanie came to meet Kate and Connor today. She is 31 weeks pregnant with Kaylee and looks terrific. I can't even fathom how active she is given how far along she is in her pregnancy. She is still working out doing the elliptical and walking. Wow - she's a high energy lady! I guess she's also making up for lost time since she had such a tough first trimester with really bad morning sickness.

Stephanie stepped right up and held Kate and Connor both. Of course, the babies had just eaten and were kind of sleepy. She asked if they are always this good. Well - almost always!

I think she'll be a great Mom to little Kaylee. I know Stephanie, John and Kaylee are in good hands since she also sees the same Doctors at Atl OB/GYN (Dr. Wootten, Dr Sharon) and also goes to MFS neonatoligists. She'll even deliver at Northside! Can't wait to meet Kaylee.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Strolling again

This lack of sleep thing is tough. After feeding the twins at 3am, 7am and 10am, I "slept in" until 2pm. Yikes. And I only woke up because Hugh came and woke me up. Do I have breakfast or lunch? All I know is I need coffee.

So - how do I salvage the day? I guess I need to get moving. At 4pm, I take Kate and Connor for a long walk through the neighborhood. There are even more Christmas decorations up now. I can't wait for the years when the twins get excited about seeing the lights. For now - I just keep yacking at them about how nice it is to see them up. I know good people must live in these homes.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Meeting SANTA

It has been a long day. I woke up at 6:45am (after waking up at 3:00, 3:30, 5:00, and 5:30am feeding babies) to start the day. First, a quick shower. Nothing like running hot water to make me feel like a human again. I commit to taking one of these so called "showers" every day. Well - at least I promise to brush my teeth if I don't get around to the shower.

As I get out of the shower, I hear the twins crying for breakfast. After a quick feed that takes me until 8:15am, I realize I need to get the twins in to their new Merry Christmas outfits. Drats for not thinking to take off all of the tags last night. It took me FOREVER to take off all the tags. What manufacturer puts on all of these little tags anyway???

Little Miss Princess (Kate) decided that she had enough of me twisting her arm (literally) to get her in to her outfit and her sweater (courtesy Aunt Martha and Uncle Tom) and squawks the hole time. Connor just sleeps and waits his turn.

Finally - we head out the door to walk (in 29 degree temperature) up to the clubhouse to meet Santa. Wonder where the reindeer are hiding? Maybe they are out back eating some hay and taking a rest. Vinings Estates is a long way from the North Pole.

Since we arrive so early, the nice ladies organizing the breakfast (including dear Tisha S.) get us to the front of the line. Wait - there is no line.... no other idiot is here at 8:59am. Oh well - Santa is very dear and is willing to hold both Connor and Kate at once. I told Santa that we already have all we need this year! We are blessed indeed.

When we get home, Dad takes a few pictures of us by our stockings that Nanna brought for us. Aren't we CUTE twins???

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Our first stroll

At my six week post-partum appointment yesterday, Dr. Wootten gave me the all clear to start exercising again. I guess that's good news (I can!) and bad news (I must!).

To make the best of it, I decided to take a stroll with our cool snap-n-go stroller that Hays and David gave to us. We took a walk to the end of our street and back. What was I thinking??? It was cold (about 45 degrees), the road has a steep decline (which means it has a steep INCLINE on the return) and it ended up raining while we were out.

Regardless - we made the best of it. Neighbors were out installing Christmas lights and lighted reindeer - so it was nice to see the decorations of the season. Kate and Connor were bundled up and seemed to enjoy the motion of the stroller. So much so - they slept through the whole outing.

Maybe it will warm up a LITTLE here in Atlanta and we can take some more temperate strolls later on this month.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Nothing special...

We're just hanging out together... Isn't it sweet how Connor and Kate almost hold hands when they sleep? Is there anything better than a sleeping baby?

OK - maybe one that SMILES? We aren't smiling yet - but we hope it's close to that time.