Saturday, August 27, 2011

Four and a half months

Our baby boys are four and a half months old. They are growing bigger and getting stronger every single day and it is just so fun to watch them!

They are starting to catch-up a little as far as percentiles go. They are both 25" long and in the 50th percentile and their weights are right around 15 lbs., which is in the 25th percentile. The doctors are so incredibly happy that they continue to grow at the same pace.

I was so bummed that Blake had to be in the hospital for as long as he was. I really, really, really wanted cute twin newborn pics of them all snuggly and stuff. The other day I got the next best thing. I was doing a project in Jenna's room and the boys fell asleep on her bed like this:

I know, right?! Super adorable! I can sense the twin bond between them all the time. It truly amazes me.

This was too precious. It's like they are always aware of where the other one is. Bowen was resting his hand on Blake's leg.

My sleepy boys.

Here's another thing they like to do: SMILE!! :) They are such happy babies and we are so very lucky. No matter how crazy things are around our house, I see those smiles and it is an instant mood lifter!
Jenna and Bowen
Brody and Blake

Some of the things they are doing right now are:
1. Rolling over like crazy
2. Getting into crawl position (it's only a matter of time...)
3. Working on eating cereal
4. Just started playing in their exersaucer
5. Drooling. Lots of drooling.
6. Kicking/punching/wrestling with each other

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Brody's First Race

A week ago last weekend there was a run east of town called Ethan's Tractor run. Long story short, it's in honor of a little boy who passed away and really loved tractors. The money raised goes towards scholarships for Marshall County students.

Saturday morning Aaron and Brody went with our friend, Jay, to the run. Jay's an avid runner and ran this race last year and had mentioned they had a kid's race. Brody wanted to do it, but Jenna was just too nervous about the whole dang thing.

Here's Brody with his bib on getting ready for the race.

According to Jay, they increased the distance by about 3 times compared to last year. The kids ended up running about a quarter mile. You can see Brody clear to the left in the picture. For not having anybody to run with and running so far he did great!

All the kids got a medal and Brody was SO PROUD!! Here he is with his medal posing with Jay, who got 4th overall (1st in his age division) in the 5K.

Because of Blake's dialysis, I wasn't able to go, but when Brody got home he said to me, "Those other kids beat me, but I still got the championship!" It was so cute!!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Ken's Photos

When my cousin Ken was down she brought her camera with her. She had it out a lot a took a ton of pictures and I really think she's a budding future photographer. I'm not a professional, but I really think she has a good eye when it comes to taking pictures. I thought I would share some of the pictures she took.

Kase at Grimes pretty :)

Blakers taking a snooze. Love the perspective.

Blake in the swing, his eyes crack me up.

Bowen snuggling with his monkey

Love the light and of course his cute smile. :)

This obviously wasn't taken while Ken was in Iowa, but I stole it off her card. The lake. In Wisconsin. So pretty. Don't you just feel so calm now?!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Summer is Slippin' Away

Can you feel it? Summer is slippin' away from us. :( The countdown has begun at our house. Six days until Aaron has to go back, 10 days until Jenna starts kindergarten and 14 until Brody starts preschool. So sad.

The start of the school year means baseball season really is over, fall sports are ready to be covered by me at the paper, homecoming, etc. Until then, we're going to soak up every minute of the summer that we can.

We've been hanging out at the pool at one of our friend's house. The kids have so much fun! Don't you love it when people take cool pictures of your kids? too! Our friend Jay took these pictures so enjoy some summer courtesy of Jenna. :)


When the girls were down we went over to Perfect Games in Ames. Every Monday through Thursday they have free bowling from 11AM-2PM, so we decided to take advantage. I think this was the first time for Brody bowling and maybe the second time for Jenna. They did really good considering. What we learned is that Aaron was the best bowler (surprise, surprise) and Kasea, Ken and I are really bad! Oh well, we had fun!

Ken giving it her best shot

Daddy helping Brody
...Letting it fly
...and the LONG wait. I think we spent half our time just waiting for Jenna and Brody's ball to get to the end of the lane.
Jenna and Kasea cheesing it up
Don't look at this form! I'm pretty sure this is how it's NOT supposed to be done. :)
Jenna did pretty good. She even held it like a real bowler.
Ken, Kasea and Me

Monday, August 8, 2011

'Scony Cousins

My cousins from Wisconsin, Kasea and McKenzie ("Ken") came down last Friday, July 30th and stayed until Saturday, August 6th. Last year, they came and stayed with us for a week too. We had such a great time!! I (all of us actually) love those girls to pieces and we enjoy every minute we have together.

We did some craft projects after our trip to Hobby Lobby, my mom came to see us for a night, we took some senior pictures for Kasea, the girls helped me paint my kitchen, we went bowling, watched movies, went to a parade and went swimming. To say the week flew by is an understatement. In fact, the girls were supposed to leave Friday morning, but stayed an extra day.

These two are the best! They are so polite and helpful and don't complain. We really appreciated the extra sets of hands with the kids. I think both girls would tell you they came a long way in dealing with Blake and Bowen. When they came they didn't change diapers, feed the boys and Ken was even nervous to roll Bowen back over on his back. :) By the end of the week, they were rockstars! They were changing diapers, making bottles, helping me with dialysis stuff...
I miss the girls already and I wish we lived closer! We can't wait for next year!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Father-Daughter Dance

There's a group of gals in State Center that started a Father-Daughter Dance five years ago. This was Aaron and Jenna's first year attending and Jenna was so excited for it. She kept asking how many days away it was until the day of and then it was how many hours. Aaron was so great about it too! He suggested Jenna wear her flower girl dress and get a ribbon to match one of his shirts. They were the best looking duo there in my very bias opinion. :)

In addition, this year they asked our family to be the recipients of the free-will donation that is taken. We feel blessed that they thought of our family. We are truly grateful for their donations.
The fathers and their daughters got to be announced in a promenade and afterwards they got to dance. Jenna informed me they did the hokey-pokey twice and also got to limbo.
This was taken right after the promenade. There's just something special about being a daddy's girl. :)

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

I'm "sew" embarrassed

Here's my embarrassing confession: we have lived in our house for 3.5 years and I have no curtains in my living room and toy room. White, white, white. Finally, I snapped last week. I told Aaron we were getting curtains and getting them soon! So, last Friday when we were in Target I found some I really liked for the four windows that were needing them. Aaron had other ideas. Our conversation went like this:

Me: I really like these curtains!
Aaron: You are not spending that much on curtains. I can make you curtains for half that price.
Me: Yeah right.
Aaron: Yes, Jame, I can.
Me: Fine. I bet you $5 (big better, aren't I?!) that you can't make curtains.
Aaron: Let's go to Hobby Lobby.

Fast forward to us being home. Long story short, a few years ago I was able to get a nice sewing machine for free. Well, it was finally time to use the machine and do you think we could find the darn pedal anywhere? Of course not! Luckily, our good friend Mary let us borrow her sewing machine and Aaron got to work.
My cousin, Ken, helped Aaron pin the material.
And away Aaron went! I was shocked he still remembered how to sew. I'm embarrassed that I can't sew because it's something I wish I could do, but I'm also impressed that Aaron can.
After watching for a while, I decided I wanted to give it a try. Me, a person who couldn't even thread the dang sewing machine in junior high. Me, a person who opted to take shop over home ec in high school so I could avoid sewing again.

Aaron was trying to give me the run down. I actually did ok, until...
I pricked my finger with a pin! Oh well, I can say I sewed two sides of one of the four curtains Aaron made, right?! :)

Drumroll...the final product....
He was so proud!!

The way I see it...

Do you ever have one of those weeks? Those weeks where you just find yourself crying a lot. I’m having one of those weeks, but I’m not really sad, just emotional. I had two incidents that happened this past weekend that made me break down.

First, on Sunday evening my husband and daughter went to the Father-Daughter dance that was held at the St. Paul Lutheran Church. It was so nice! What a great event for dads and daughters. Jenna was excited for a couple of weeks in advance and didn’t stop asking how long it was until the dance until she and Aaron left for the dance.

This year, the group that puts it on asked if our family would be the recepients of the free will offering they have. We said we would and I (along with the rest of my family) were so touched by the generosity that was shown. Honestly, it was just another thing that brought me to tears.

While at the dance, a little something was said about our family and Blake and everything we’ve gone through since finding out we were expecting twins. It was strange, I have to tell you. When you’re used to telling people about your situation and then you have to actually hear everything you’ve been through, it’s a different feeling. Enter me tearing up, yet again. Hearing it out loud made me think, “Wow, this sounds really bad. Twins...a baby in Iowa City for ten weeks...kidney failure...nightly dialysis...transplant.” I know I’m not explaining it right, but it was like an out of body experience or something to hear somebody talk about your life in such a way.

Incident number two: I checked our family’s blog over the weekend and noticed a new comment on one of the posts I had written. What I found made me speechless and reinforce my belief in fate.

The comment was from a gal in California who found our blog via Google (I have no idea how) and on the day, THE EXACT DAY, that Blake got to go home she welcomed a son seven weeks early. Her son suffered from posterior urethral valves (what caused this mess for Blake) his kidneys are working at about 15%, they have started the same dialysis that Blake is on, they are talking about a G-tube and he had just had a hernia repaired.

Does that sound familiar? Yeah, it did to me to. I just stared at the computer and read the comment two more times. I teared up. I am thankful she found us. If nothing else for a place to go just to realize that somebody else has been in your shoes. I always feel like everything in your life happens for a reason. Things like this don’t just happen. It just gives me goosebumps that she had her son the same day we took Blake home. What in the world are the odds of that happening?

I have this feeling in my gut that it was just meant to be that she found us. It couldn’t have been easy because my husband tried googling to find us and he couldn’t do it. I got her email address because she wants to talk to me. I am definitely emailing her, if nothing else just to let her know that we have been there and we’re making it and things are going to be ok. What I learned after this week is that sometimes, you just need to let go and cry, but that’s just the way I see it.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Sponge Balls

I got this idea from a friend (thanks Chris!) to make these sponge balls for the kids to play with. With as hot as it's been, I decided it would be a perfect time to make these with the kids. You need three sponges for each sponge ball. The kids liked to mix and match the colors.

Start by cutting a sponge in half and then in half again.

Line up the sponges in any pattern you want.

Gather them together like this and then use a rubber band to secure them in the middle. The result looks like this:

Cute, huh?!

The kids and I had a lot of fun playing in the backyard with them. I even got in a pretty good dual with Jenna. Brody was my little helper and stole all the sponge balls from Jenna. :)

This picture of Brody freaks me out. I have a vision of him at about 17 pitching for his high school team. Daddy was pretty proud of his form.
Jenna had pretty good aim. She even nailed Brody in the forehead, which she found hilarious and Brody...not so much!