Thursday, April 26, 2012

Toddler-Speak 101

We are enjoying this current phase of toddler speak, where almost every word is butchered, but at least we know what they mean most of the time. It's pretty darn cute :-)

The Chatty Cathy's

2012 Toddler Slang Dictionary
According to: Avery and Lauren

A-E = Avery

Why-A = Lauren (don't ask me how they got that one...but they both say it)

Tee-Tee = Taylor

Bubba = Brodie (they originally started calling him BoBo but we QUICKLY made them relearn it as Bubba...we just kept thinking of BoBo the clown!)

LoLo = Grandma Laurel ("Avery, who has chickens?" "LoLo!!")

Chee = Cheese (the most commonly requested food item in this household. Lauren requests it for literally every snack and meal.)

Ah-hee = "hot" anything, although usually in reference to hot dog. Again, how they got Ahi out of Hot, I do not know.
WaWa = self explanatory right?

Gobbee = Strawberry

BooBee = Blueberry

Nana = Banana

Shoes = Shoes...yay!

Yeg = Leg
Ahm = Arm

Mine = Man, also Mine

Yady = Lady

BuhBoon = Balloon

Beeg = Big

Elmo = Elmo :-)

Mo = More (usually Mo Mo, just to be sure we got the request for more!)

Bi = Bike, also Bite

Pay = Play

Plus the usual suspects...mama, dada, hi, bye, yeah, night night, booboo, nose, eye, up, down, off, on, uh-oh, baby, yay (always with clapping), and woah! the top of my head that's all I can think of but they pop up so fast now that I'm sure I'm missing some.

Oh wait...did I mention NO??? Most popular word in toddler history. Ever.

And, if an ear piercing shriek could be translated as a word, trust me I would put it at the top of the list. 'Cause shrieking is a beloved pastime for my girls. Sigh. I guess living through toddlerhood will just make the silence that I will eventually get to enjoy in the oh-so distant future all the more beautiful. Until then, my doting husband keeps me fully stocked up on earplugs :-)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Caught on tape (best video EVER!)

I'm not going to lie. I'm a bit of a schedule nazi. That was one of the things that was drilled into me when I was pregnant, and I really took that advice to heart. Routine is king around these parts, and naptime is a lovely piece of wonderfulness in the middle of my day. Let me tell you, nothing will ruin my mood faster than a naptime gone wrong. Now, ever since we did our sleep training at 10.5 months, we've had a great naptime track record, usually 10 minutes and out. Lately, however, it sounds like a comedy show is going on upstairs. I hear wild giggling and shrieking for at least the first 10 minutes of every nap. Some days, I get two or three rounds of the circus sounds before I finally hear that golden silence I soooo look forward to. Yes, I am happy that they have fun together...but really, go to sleep already!! Yesterday was one of those days. So, on my first "it's naptime lay down and go to sleep" warning of the afternoon, I stuck the camera in there. Enjoy.

I think my favorite part is the full on pillow fight.
Or wait, no, it's when Lauren looks over her shoulder to see if I'm coming after she throws shit in Avery's bed.
Or... maybe it's Avery climbing on the pile of animals and pillows, getting dangerously close to figuring out that that's her ticket to getting into Lauren's bed.

This video was 13 minutes long originally. I ended up intervening again when they started round two of the pillow fight. I took all but one pillow and one stuffed animal out of their cribs on that visit. In all, it took an hour...yes, an HOUR, for them to finally knock out. As much as I'd really hate to do it, rearranging their room might be in the veeeeerrrrry near future!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Baby OCD

Rob and I like to tease each other about our little "OCD issues". His primary one is comparison shopping (the man seriously cannot stop comparing...even AFTER he's pulled the trigger on something!). If you ask ME, I'd say I don't have any, but Rob might say that keeping the girls things designated to the right girl is mine. It drives me INSANE when he does things like dresses A in an outfit that someone bought for L, or puts L in A's high chair. My defense? As a twin, I know how important it is that some things are yours all the time and don't HAVE to be shared! What we're finding out is that we may have passed some "quirks" on to our daughters. I'm sure this is all in the realm of "normal" development, but we find ourselves joking about their baby-OCD as much as we joke about each others.
Lauren is the "something that is not supposed to be open is open" alarm. Baby gates, bathroom doors, cupboards...if we left it open, she'll find it and let us know. And keep letting us know. Until we close it, and restore order to her world.
Lauren and Avery are also both VERY stuck on making their stuffed animals, dolls, and barn animal set "stand up" like mommy and daddy make them. Damn our liking things to look neat and orderly at the end of the day! Our nightly tidy of their room has taught them that it is NOT ok for the teddy bears to "lay down" in the cubbies, the barn animals have to have ALL FOUR feet touching the barn floor AND the stall doors MUST be fully closed, and the baby dolls must be sitting upright like a real child (and preferably not leaning on something...). This quirk was kinda cute at first. But now I'm moving on to "it's ok if the teddy bear lays down...he's sleepy and wants to take a nap!". (This doesn't work yet, in case you're curious. But I'm trying!)
The way their animals hafta look before bed time. Or else.
Also - if anyone if this household is wearing an item of clothing with a zipper, it MUST BE ZIPPED UP. God forbid daddy should want to wear his jacket's a crisis until he zips that sucker back up! Unfortunately for me, they love unzipping things, but the zip-up process is beyond them most of the time. So they make the "mommy my zipper is undone and it is CRITICAL that it be zipped back up right this second" sound a lot. And since copying each other is a major pastime at the moment, I often have two kiddo's clamoring for a zip up. Sometimes if I don't laugh, I'll cry!

Miss Avery, all zipped up :-)
One last thing - Rob is ordered to remove his shoes immediately upon entering. We are not a no-shoes household, never have been. But for whatever reason, he's not allowed to keep his shoes on. They must be removed, and put away (one by Avery, one by Lauren....all things must be fair!) as soon as he gets home in order for there to be peace.

Ah, toddlerhood in twinland. Such magic times!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A seriously good find

As the days have gotten shorter and colder, I've been fighting a determined case of cabin fever. I was getting dangerously close to exhausting my let's-have-fun-inside-time skills (I can only play "find the babies in the blanket fort" so many times before I'm checking the calendar, hoping the discover that it's March, not just December!), when my mailbox delivered my salvation:

The Si View Parks and Recreation Winter Guide.

Not only was it chock full of classes and lessons for ages 1 on up, but there, on page 6, in a tiny advertisement, was my golden ticket to toddler fun land...The SnoValley Indoor Playground. Hallelujah! Running 3 days a week, for 2 hours, for ONE DOLLAR per child (yes folks, $1...that's practically free!), the SnoValley Indoor Playground is apparently where all the smart (and warm) parents have been hanging out with their children. Maybe this explains why I almost always have the "real" park to myself!

Armed with the fact that the girls both walk well, hold my hands, and (sometimes) listen to my instructions, and the knowledge that one more morning inside or worse, at the freezing park, might kill me, I packed them up on Monday and went to check it out. You can imagine my disappointment when there was a sign on the door (which of course I didn't see until AFTER I had unloaded the bubba's and corralled them towards the entrance) announcing that the playground was closed that day due to lack of volunteers. SOB!!! (Mental note - must sign up for a volunteer shift!) I settled for a walk around the community center to look at the crows, which they always love, and took encouragment from the many, many other mom's I saw trying to take their little ones to the playground. It definitely wasn't closed for lack of attendance!

So today, we tried again, and this time...SUCCESS! This place was AMAZING - Due to it's existence, I'm pretty sure I don't ever have to buy bikes, little people cars, slides, or anything else of the sort....they're all there, and in abundance. Avery was like a kid in a candy store - aiming straight for the bikes. If you didn't know any better, you'd think she actually knows how to ride :) Lauren was a little slower to be adventurous, but eventually found her groove (in the form of a slide - she's addicted!). There were probably 50 + kids, from 0-5, all having a blast, and my little girls right in the thick of it.

It's mornings like this that make me so incredibly thankful for my babies. If they're this much fun already, I can't wait to see what the years to come hold for us!

A little peek at the fun we had (the last picture is Avery, Miss Independent, waaaay across the room from me!):




Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Avery and Lauren Explorer Club

So the girls are ALL about exploration and investigation these days, especially when the weather allows a park trip. The monsoon last week created a temporary pond at our favorite park, and a family of ducks has taken up residence there, much to the bubbas delight. They're also figuring out up and down (thanks to the teeter-totter), checking out water drips (thanks to the drippy roof on the park shed), and feeling lots of fuzzy green moss (courtesy of the trees and rocks).

Even when we're faced with an inside-all-dayer, they still find plenty to keep them interested. One of their favorite rainy day activities is the blanket fort game - nothing beats crawling into a dark fort and being "found" :-)

I love seeing the world through their eyes!

Waving "Hi" to the ducks (who were swimming in a half frozen pond this morning).
Showing me the moss.
Exploring her cave.
Loving life.
Feeling the fuzzy moss.
Watching the ducks.
Practicing UP and DOWN.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

A minute in the life...

Twindom is full of highs and lows. While me and my sis have been enjoying mainly highs for the last decade, our history is not without its low points (some of the lowest involving boyfriends and jeans...) just comes with the territory. I never expected my toddlers to have such highs and lows of emotion though - I guess I just felt like they were too young for it. But man oh man, do these girls have the most up and down relationship!  I have to say, watching the highs and lows of my two girls is kind of like watching my own life on super fast forward - the love is separated from the hate by, literally, a matter of seconds.

To illustrate, here is a series of 4 photos, taken in the span of not more than 60 seconds:

"Seriously Mom? You're just going to watch her trample me to death?"

"Oh sister, I love playing with you!"

"How dare you steal that toy!"
"Oh sister, you're my favorite!"

Now, take that one minute, multiply by the roughly 600 minutes that they are awake each day, and that's our life. Fun, right? :-)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Team Bubba: Part 2

We are all settling in nicely in our new place - we've only been here a week, but it's definitely starting to feel like home. The babies are handling the change nicely, in fact they're handling it much better than the other two babies in the house, Bella and Daisy (who are still completely wigged out...I'm hoping this won't last much longer!).

The babies are also settling very comfortably into their new roll as TODDLERS. It seems like it snuck up on day they were babies - they looked like babies, acted like babies, sounded like babies. Then one day we woke up, and they looked like little people. And they SOUNDED like little people...albeit little people who speak their own language, one that involves as much shrieking as it does talking.

I, on the other hand, am struggling a bit with this transition. I wasn't quite prepared for the new phase, and all that comes with it:
Frustration: Theirs, at trying to communicate and at being told no; and mine, with trying to interpret the shrieking, pointing, teary exclamations they put forth so frequently and at having to say no. I'm starting to learn their language though. I'm noticing the subtle differences in the Baa's and Bwaa's and Waah's. It's helping that their pointing is getting more accurate (it started of VERY vague - a wandering point that would move on to something new as soon as you thought you'd discovered it's original target).
Repetition: Too bad they love it, 'cause in case you weren't aware, I HATE repeating myself (just ask my husband!). Right now the repetition is in two categories: Books (there are some days where "Go Dog, Go!" is hidden under a couch cushion so that Lauren can't bring it to me for the 21st time (literally...she's addicted to that book), because dear God, I just cannot take it!), and actions (specifically, opening/closing, and on/ in light switches, hats on baby dolls, etc...The door opening/closing video I posted on FB recently was only 1 minute worth of what was actually at least a 15 minute session of that activity!). I prefer the repeating actions to the repeating books, except in cases of put me on the chair/take me off the chair and turn the light switch on/turn the light switch off, 'cause those 2 involve lots of assistance from mommy :-)
Clinging: Luckily this symptom usually only rears its ugly head between 5:30 and bedtime, and most often only affects Avery. We're not sure when she became so mommy-dependant, but if she's in the mood for me, I'm all that will suffice.
Food Sharing: Ok, let me explain this one. I have NO problem sharing whatsoever. I've been sharing my entire life. But I literally cannot eat anything without two babies clinging to my legs with wide open chomp faces, clamoring for a bite. And bites I do give, when appropriate. But God forbid I should be eating (or drinking) something on the no no list - well, then we go back to frustration, see above :-)
Fighting/Tattling: There's quite a bit of sibling rivalry going on. Toy stealing, book stealing, binky stealing, all commonplace. Pushing and shoving, not as common, but definitely there. Tattling? Oh yes. In the form of shrieking. Specifically Lauren, shrieking about whatever Avery has done to her this time. Trying not to raise a tattler, but at the same time, sometimes the abuse from Avery is so blatant that I can't help but side with Lauren!

I could go on and on (insisting, stomping & kicking, refusing to eat, etc...) but I'll spare you all! The development of a baby to a toddler is rapid and unforgiving. Good thing there was a healthy dose of cuteness that came along with the change!
Cuddling - anything that's soft is worthy of a snuggle these days...especially the dogs!
Park-playing - two walkers means two playground lovin' kiddos! We've even moved past the just-want-to-eat-the-bark phase to actually playing on the toys. Exciting!
Running - even Lauren's got a little extra giddy-up in her step sometimes...Avery still runs circles around her, but she's trying!
Ribbit-Bobbing - I am trying SO hard to get this one on video...I don't know how it started, but whenever we're reading a book that has a frog in it, and I say "ribbit ribbit" for the frog sound, they bob their heads in time, so freakin' cute!
Animal Loving - we already knew they loved dogs, but now that we're out and about more, they're noticing animals everywhere, and they're all greeted by pointing and excited exclaiming. They love seeing birds at the park - they try to chase them, but we all know how that goes...
Dancing - Avery dances to anything and everything...she's got rhythm! Lauren not as much, but a few songs will get her grooving too :)

I could go on and on about the good things too, but frankly, The Office is starting, and I want to sit on the couch for the first time today :-) This is my parenthood roller coaster!

Some of their new favorites:

Playing at our new favorite park. Equipment for little tykes, and an unbeatable view.

Checking out the tunnel at the playground.
On a bird hunt.

My other little bird hunter (shortly before she threw a fit because I wouldn't let her run into the parking lot to chase the birds).
The chairs that they so dearly love, but can't quite get into and out of on their own :-)


A little pillow-snuggling time in the morning!

Cause and effect in action.

They "fight" (aka shriek at me) over this activity.

Lauren seriously does not get bored with this activity. Ever.

I make daddy read the books during the evening play session. Ha!