31 Jan 2009

Scary stuff

Don't worry, nothing too bad!

Today has been a very strange day somehow. We woke the girls up at quarter to nine this morning as they showed no signs of waking by themselves. After we'd fed them breakfast they went straight back to bed and slept through until after Noon. Z has a 24 hour volleyball tournament so he took off just before lunch while I waited for the girls to wake up.

When the girls finally woke up they gobbled down lunch and then we drove through to town to go shoe shopping. Unfortunately I forgot where I was, here in Germany a lot of the smaller shops close on a Saturday afternoon, so it was a waste of time! We drove to visit Z at his tournament as it was in our neighbouring town. Boy was that exhausting! With them both being mobile and Ciara now climbing stairs and up on to benches, I just couldn't manage alone. Thankfully there were enough adults at the sport centre that they kept bringing the escapee back to me when one made a break and I was distracted by the other. Next time though, I'm definitely taking the baby reins with!

Enya demonstrated her walking technique for everyone to see though and climbed her first step although she didn't trust herself to go up the second step. She was blown away by watching her daddeee playing volleyball. She stood on the terrace overlooking the playing field, screaming, laughing and banging on the glass, it was hysterical. Unfortunately it was so loud in the sports hall that Z didn't even realise that he had his own personal cheerleader. Ciara was more interested in climbing onto the benches and digging in other peoples tog bags!

We then brought them both home for dinner and bed. Z came to help although he left straight after dinner as they still have games to play overnight. He'll come back sometime tonight to sleep and so he's here for breakfast tomorrow before he drives back for the last games tomorrow (usually he just stays for the entire 24 hours at the sports hall).

So it was a day with only one nap and I don't have the feeling that they missed the second nap. I'm dreading losing that second nap but today underlined that it is rapidly approaching.

30 Jan 2009

On the mend

"What do you mean, you don't have this shoe in my size"

Ciara's rash is fading and so far Enya seems fine (she is refusing bottles but that, as the old faithfuls know, is nothing new) so hopefully "SICK" has left our house.

In the aftermath of this sickness though Ciara is being incredibily affectionate and keeps climbing on to my lap for cuddles. Yes, she is actually giving me cuddles, including laying her head on my shoulder. I'm making the most of this phase as I don't belive it will last long (Ciara is not usually very affectionate) but it proves the saying "every cloud has a silver lining".

Paper sea

Enya managed 18 steps a couple of days ago and has even mastered turning 180 degrees without falling. She loves walking between two objects e.g. from Z to me and back. She gets so much enjoyment out of her improved mobility and is practicing so hard that I really need to get my A in to G and go buy the girls some shoes for wearing outdoors. Ciara is a toddler now (pretty much always on her feet although still a bit unsteady) and although I would still class Enya as a crawler I don't think it will be long until she too prefers toddling to crawling.

28 Jan 2009

ER today

Our 2nd ER visit, this time with Ciara.

This morning she woke up with no temperature and eating nearly normally but in an absolutely foul mood. She also had a slight rash on her trunk. The midday nap didn't happen as Ciara screamed the whole time and when I finally got her up she was inconsolable. I had another look at her rash and did the glass trick (you know roll a glass over the rash), the rash didn't blanch with pressure and what with it being a Wednesday afternoon (do all your doctors also take Wednesday afternoon off?)so off we went to the ER.

After sitting around for an hour we got in to see the doctor to be told she just has a viral infection, probably a respiratory one but nothing to worry about. Believe me I'll take a respiratory infection over meningitis any day of the week! He even showed me a more accurate way to check for a non blanching rash for next time.

I feel a bit of an over reactive idiot but I'd rather go once too often to the doctors and be called an over anxious mother than miss something big.

27 Jan 2009

Eating strike

Well the temperatures are down to nearly normal levels without any meds and the moods are slightly improved, unfortunately neither girl is really interested in eating. Even the morning and evening bottles are not exactly easy. Up to now I haven't started to panic but all bets are off if this continues too long.

Okay topic change: I've been a bit concerned as I didn't think the girls were understanding much.... until this last week. It seems like they have had another developmental leap forwards. If we ask them where something is, they look around. Now don't get to excited, they are not looking for the object we asked for but they are aware that we want something. They also both clap their hands and wave, as well as show us how tall they are when we ask them to. I've been trying to teach Ciara how to be gentle by stroking her with the command "mach Aii" ("make nice" is a fairly close translation), when I say the words she now strokes her own head. Now I just have to teach her to do that to others instead of hitting them or pulling their hair!

Enya calls me "meme" and Z is "dadee", she also says some other words like "heiss" (hot), "Eya" and "up" although they are not often used in context ("up" is being used more and more in context which gives you some idea what today has been like).
Ciara calls me "mama" and Z is however as yet unnamed, she also said "heiss" for the first time yesterday but is more interested in babbling than talking. They are both very vocal and babble all the time, just the connection with words is not quite there yet.

We knew they were likely going to be late talkers as we are bringing them up bilingual but it's still nice to see that some things are clicking in the speech works.

26 Jan 2009

Not so happy 200th post

Well a double century in posts has been reached and soon I reach my first year blogging anniversary, who would have thought.

The not so good news is right now the girls are sick again. Saturday night was very disturbed with Ciara waking every few hours and being very hard to comfort. On Sunday Z noticed she was not her usual self while they were having their normal tumble hour on the couch (insert: Ciara can now get up on the couch by herself, oh joy!). With a temperature check the reason became crystal clear, she had a temperature of 40.1 C, that is a first!

Thankfully the temperature responded to paraceta.mol, although it is not yet normal it is now a low grade fever. Unfortunately though she is incredibly clingy, she just wants to be carried and petted and she is not eating! Can you believe I wrote that CIARA is not eating! Last night she even refused a Fruchtzwerg (yogurt) and went to bed with no dinner. Today this trend has continued and if it doesn't get better tomorrow, we are heading to the paediatrician.

Scary part is Enya also has a temperature this evening....tomorrow should be fun!

23 Jan 2009

Slapstick Comedy

So maybe I overstated Enya's walking abilities a bit. Not that she isn't trying, she even managed 12 steps yesterday...yes consecutive steps ;0). No, the exaggeration was saying she is walking, a more correct description would be lurching, wobbling or slapstick mobility.

She has moments where she is balanced on one leg, the other leg at right angles to it with her body at almost 180 degrees in the opposite direction to counterbalance. The scary thing is she somehow manages to hold her balance in this position and still take a few more steps after! When Ciara started trying to walk she used to take one step, balance for a second, then take another step,she pretty much stayed in the midline. Enya just goes, swinging wildly from side to side until she plomps down. We have these sessions where she'll keep at it for 20 minutes or so: standing up, lurching off, plompsing down, up again, plompsing down, up again..lather rinse repeat ad nauseum.. until she's so tired she barely can get up again. I love it, from day to day I can see the improvement. I can't believe how quickly this has all started, last week when we discussing it at Krabbelgruppe, I said walking would still be weeks if not months away for Enya!

I have a great video of it from yesterday where she actually looks very controlled (for her) and as soon as Z has time I'll get him to down load it for you all to enjoy (I'm the technophobe in the house). It was the first time Z has seen Enya walking as she is usually so exhausted by the time he comes home, she can't stand up anymore.

In lieu of video here are some more photos of the sweeties.

Z holding the girls

Christmas, Enya the Intellectual.....

..or maybe not.....

.. but then Ciara isn't much better.

PS the BumGen.ius nappies have been a huge disappointment as they leak out from around the leg. They are not so full that they are overflowing around the waist like with the disposables, rather they just don't fit as well around the leg. Now I really don't know what to do overnight. I looked on the internet and Huggies Overnight got a good review from other moms in the same boat, unfortunately they are not available in Europe. Advice anybody??

20 Jan 2009

She walks

Well that happened faster than I expected! I was sitting on the floor playing with the girls yesterday when Enya stood up by herself and took off. She walked/ran 6 or 7steps before I caught her and would probably have done more as she was perfectly balanced. I should have let her do more but I was just so excited that I didn't stop and think.

Then yesterday evening she did it again 4 or 5 times, standing up alone and taking off I mean. Once she even managed 8 steps before she fell! The best thing is we are doing nothing, she is initiating everything, we don't even have to hold out our hands.

I was contemplating buying Ciara her first proper pair of outdoor shoes but I think I'll wait a little bit longer and get them both a pair when Enya's walking improves.

Wow, 2 walking babies!

*The picture is Enya cuddling her Tssszzzz

17 Jan 2009


Not very much going on this side of the Channel.

We've taken Enya's dummy away from her as she was leaving huge puddles all over her bed at night (well see if you can swallow when your lower lip is hooked over an upside down dummy. I tried it, not a pretty picture). She hasn't cried for it once, she just cuddles with her Cuski and her snake instead. She also hasn't started sucking her thumb again so we believe the dummy is history in her case. With Ciara though not so much. I'm still getting regularly woken at 2-3 am in the morning as she has lost her dummy and wants a replacement. Ignoring her doesn't work she just gets louder and louder until Enya eventually wakes up too. We are going to have to grasp the bull by the horns at some stage but not just yet!

They are drinking better and better from their sippy cup. Yes I mean sippy singular! That 50 cents secondhand cheapy that I bought at the bazaar is the one they both drink best from (i.e. the only one they will drink any volume from). A couple of days ago they drank 100mls each from it (vanilla flavoured milk), I was dancing. We just have to supervise closely, as Enya in particular likes to turn it upside down and watch the water run out all over her legs.

I'm also experimenting with nappies again as our solution to the night time nappy failure also failed last night. We were putting a maxi pad in their night time nappy to soak up some of the fluid so the nappy would hold but Ciara managed to overload even that solution. Instead I'm trying cloth nappies, my preemie group has a very vocal pro cloth nappy contingent and they are convinced that cloth nappies will be able to hold back the flood waters, if only because you can keep sticking in extra doublers (act like the maxi pad, as extra reservoirs). We are trying bum Geni.us and I will get back to you on how successful they are. I still can't believe my girls are unusual in the amount they pee overnight, Pampe.rs Baby Drys are supposed to be for overnight, aren't they?

PS Enya has almost cracked the 9 kilo mark, 70g to go!! Ciara has however cracked the 11 kilo mark. I have got to get rid of the baby scales!

15 Jan 2009

Making a break for it

I've got cabin fever and the girls are bored so today we are going to make a break for it, we're going into town for Hot Chocolate. Is that breaking my no chocolate resolution for the year?

Did I ever mention when I'm drinking a cup of tea and the girls are around, they keep grabbing my cup and wanting a sip. I have baby tea and the girls won't touch it, but my normal milky black tea they love. They scream at me when I finish it and they can't have any more! I'm not too worried about the caffeine in it, with the amount of caffeine Enya was on until June last year, 2 or 4 sips of black tea aren't going to harm her!

14 Jan 2009

Still more pictures

I know a complete picture overload but I just downloaded our card (3rd post today!!)

Give me my bottle!


Twins in Snowsuits! This was the day we saw about 8 other sets of twins while visiting the christmas market in Siegburg.

Housework part 2

Note read part 1 first, I couldn't fit all the pictures into one post!

After the short break we then had to wash the floors, Ciara was very helpful with this chore.

The last chore on the list was cleaning mirrors as the little people in our house like to lick mirrors and windows.

We were all glad when the house work was finished, so glad in fact that C and E decided to celebrate....

PS the string on the kitchen cabinets is so they can't open the cupboards. In the last week they have suddenly gotten very interested in opening all doors and drawers as well as turning on light switches. Makes for fun times I tell you!!

Housework part 1

The advantage with having 2 little girls is that they keep trying to "help" me around the house. Yesterday was house cleaning day (my dust balls had dust balls, IT WAS TIME!!) and while I was working I took some photos to share with you all.

First I had to vacuum our flat

Now that they are no longer terrified of the vacuum cleaner, I get followed around when vacuum, Enya keeps trying to walk around with it and has even discovered the off/on button.

Then we had to do hang the washing up, both C and E love to push the laundry box through to our drying room

They even help me take the washing out the box

Then Enya needed a water break because as we all know house work is hard work

To be continued above....

13 Jan 2009

Weekend fun

We've had temperatures below freezing for more than week now so the snow from last week is still lying around, trapping me and the girls at home. The plus side is that on the weekend we had clear skies so we decided to take the girls sledding.

J and her husband and 2 year old daughter came over for brunch to start the day which was fantastic, pancakes, croissants and lovely fresh rolls, I love Sunday brunches! Then we drove the hour to our local ski area, Winterberg. The girls were very cooperative and slept in the car, which they hardly ever do now days, and it was a beautiful drive through the snow covered pine forests and rolling hills.

The weather was wonderful, a crisp fresh cold with no moisture in the air, perfect for a day outside. We all had on our winter snow suits or ski suits and were not in the slightest bit cold until the sun went down at 16:30.

I was initially very nervous as the slope for sledding looked quite steep and I'd never been sledding before but I saw lots of other parents sledding with their toddlers and even saw one man with his toddler and a baby younger than our two so I was willing to give it a go. We hired 2 sleds and bought our lift cards (told you the slope was quite steep and long). Thankfully we found a slightly gentler alternative route for the steepest part of the slope which I always took, Z did do the main slope a couple of times after finding his sledding skills still intact. The hardest part of the whole day was carrying Enya and the sled while waiting in the queue for the ski lift (a chair lift that stopped to pick up passengers and again to let them off at the top), I thought my arm was going to drop off. Unfortunately the sled didn't have a backrest, so Enya (and Ciara) couldn't balance alone on it for long i.e. we couldn't just sit them on it and drag them behind us. The sledding was great fun, although once again I think I set records for the slowest descents possible but the important thing was Enya enjoyed it. Z went faster with Ciara but he was also slow in comparison to the other daredevils on the piste.

After 3 runs we went to the ski hut for hot chocolate and to feed the girls who were ravenous by this time, what with all the fresh air. Ciara was so hungry she kept trying to lick the table, yyyeeeeeuuuuch! She was also on a bit of a sugar high because they were playing music in the hut and Ciara was bobbing away in time to the music.

It was by now getting quite late so we quickly went for another 2 runs, the best part was that the queues were now non existent, but we stopped after 2 as it was getting a bit chilly. The girls were fantastic the whole time, they really enjoyed the down hill sledding, the only time anyone whinged at all was with the waiting in line for the lift but even that was minimal. We had not sooner got in the car and driven to the first crossroads when silence reigned in our car, both girls had passed out from their "strenuous" day.

When we got home and fed them their dinner (only half an hour later than normal), they were once again starving and gobbled doen everything we offered then before whinging for more. It must be true what they say about fresh air stimulating the appetite ;0). They also both never made another sound after we laid them down for the night, not until 7am Monday morning!!

The only bad things about the entire day was unfortunately somewhere we lost Ciara's winter jacket. I don't know how as she only had it on in the car, we never took it out of the car at all. And while filming on the hillside we lost the lens cap for our new video camera, again hard to understand as you have to screw it multiple times to take it off and it was firmly screwed on. You probably won't see any video clips as the only times Z filmed me I was having to propel the sled forwards with my feet.

10 Jan 2009

meme fun

I've got a bit of writers block right now, it's what happens when one of the darling daughters goes on a sleep strike and keeps me awake for 2 hours in the middle of the night crying! As soon as we go into the room, silence, if we leave the room, tears and screaming. I don't know how Enya can sleep through it, but she's not disturbed, so we're going to try Cry It Out. Wish me luck!!

Any way back to the writers block, in one of the other blogs I read she had a meme posted which I thought would make a nice easy post, so here we go.

The rules are that you are to bold/change the color on each of the below that apply to you, then tag 4 more people and let me know when you’ve posted!

1. Started your own blog.
2. Slept under the stars

3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland
8. Climbed a mountain–several actually including Kilimanjaro
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch

15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
tomatoes this year, they were delicious
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France-we wanted too but the queue was too long
20. Slept in an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight

22. Hitchhiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill- not proud of this one
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse (solar and lunar)
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset

31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing- can't wait to get back into this
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa -hee hee, was born there
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud

55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason

66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square

74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chicken pox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby

95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a lawsuit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Read an entire book in one day- you mean a book can take longer than a day?

I'm not going to tag anyone, I did this just for fun, if you want to do it though feel free. Just don't forget to let me know

8 Jan 2009


I don't have anything new to post today so instead I thought I'd show you the girls' favourite toys right now.

first of all there is Tssszzzz as Enya likes to call her.

She is over a meter long and Enya loves to cuddle her (Ciara does too when she is allowed anywhere near Tssszzzz which isn't often!). Enya started stealing our snake draft stopper from our front door which is why we bought her own snake for Christmas. It was a big hit, but hasn't help with the draft stopper stealing as Ciara now steals it!

Next we have the squeaking donkey, it was bought to help us get the girls to look at the camera but Ciara immediately appropriated it. We always know when she is crawling anywhere as every time her hand hits the ground it squeaks, who needs a cat collar with bells on it;0)

Last but not least is the dummy replacement. The hand goes in the mouth, the body hangs out and whoever has it is happy. They think it is even better than a dummy as we hardly ever take it off them whereas a dummy is immediately removed if they aren't in bed

7 Jan 2009

Enya walks

I think the title says it all. Ciara practiced her standing for at least a month before she took her first step, Enya started standing alone last week and this week she's achieved her first proper steps alone. She managed 4 steps from the sofa to my arms today and she keeps on trying. She amazes me (they both do). I got to walk from the lounge through to the kitchen today, about 10m, with both girls walking with me, only holding onto one finger each for balance. Another parental milestone ticked ;0)

I find it particularly fascinating how their different temperaments affect how they develop. Ciara is super cautious and waits until she has absolutely perfected a position/technique before she moves forward, where Enya just throws herself into everything without caring if she mastered the stage before. It makes it scary sometimes, but that's Enya. I think she's going to give me heart attacks when she's older!

I discovered today both girls like scrambled egg. I was having a late lunch and Ciara came begging when she saw I was eating (I swear she could eat all day if we let her!) I gave her some of my potato and she spat it back at me but my egg she ate. I thought I would then try Enya expecting her not to like it but she also swallowed it down and begged for more.

Operation Christmas Dinner didn't happen last year, they kept crashing before dinner was ready, so instead we had a Christmas Breakfast of waffles which was magic!), I'm now pushing normal solids so we are at least on "adult food" in time for our all inclusive holiday in June (I do NOT want to lug my blender stick overseas).

It would of course help if Ciara wouldn't spit out all unpureed fruit and veg straight back out at me. Even using the mesh feeder didn't fool her, I gave her some banana in the feeder yesterday and she chewed quite happily on the mesh but then let it dribble out her mouth when she'd gnashed the banana up (she loves mashed bananas on the spoon). That being said she does like dried fruit, our latest treat after dinner is prunes. She loves them, I just need to cut the skin off (a story in itself) as she can't chew it small enough to swallow, Enya loves prunes too. I'm really hoping this solves with Ciara's "regularity" problems!

5 Jan 2009

Night time woes continued

Or maybe the nappies won't hold after all. The girls decided off their own bat to help lead us back to our normal schedule by waking up at 6am on Sunday and this morning (usually we get up at quarter to 7 when Z is working). Unfortunately yesterday both nappies failed and this morning Enya's nappy failed to contain the flood. And this is despite having only 12 hours "pee time"

I guess I'm off to the supermarket to get some size 5 nappies to go over their size 4ones. Well I would, but we've had 10cm of powder snow overnight so Z has got the family car for work (the one with the child seats in, the other car doesn't have winter tires on) and the sidewalks are not cleared enough for us to get there on foot.

3 Jan 2009

Schedule change again?

I'm thinking we may have to play around with our feeding schedule again. Not because the girls aren't doing well, they are: Enya 8800g and Ciara 10 820g :0).

No, we are running into our old problem of the nappies not holding out for the entire night time. Every day this week one or both girls have woken up soaked right through, even their sleeping bags were wet through. As they are both determined tummy sleepers, it leaks out the front above the waist band. We already wait for the last nappy change until just before bed and change them immediately when they wake up but the 14 to 15 hours between are just too much.

I'm now wondering if we move the last bottle to the middle of the afternoon and just let them have their sippys at dinner time, if that will help? Alternatively I could double up their nappys, if I buy the next nappy size up it should fit over.

On the otherhand Z goes back to work next week :0(, so they (and we) won't be sleeping in anymore. Maybe with only 13 hours pee time the nappys will last the night!!

1 Jan 2009

Happy New Year

I hope you are all feeling better than poor Z today. Silly thing sat up with his best friend drinking until 5:30am this morning. Mean wife that I am, I dragged him out of bed to give C and E their bottles at 8am, although I did let him off giving them their cereal. Poor man was green by the end of the bottles and I don't think he would have survived the morning solids, he barely managed the midday solids. Let us just say he did not enjoy the 2 hour drive back to our home from Muenster.

As you may have guessed some of us had a very festive New Year. The girls faded at 6pm as usual and I was also in bed well before midnight (Ciara has had a couple of bad nights in a row which leaves me wrecked), however Z and our friends more than made up for us faders.

We've had a great start to the New Year with Enya standing up straight, without any support or pulling up on anything, twice today. She can only hold her balance for a few seconds but she is trying really hard. Ciara has set a new record of 22 steps in a row without falling down as well (Z was counting!).

Ciara also mastered the stairs while we were at our friends, she even did more than half the stairs unsupervised while I was bringing Enya back to bed after breakfast. The stairs had no gate on them and I was alone. I thought she was distracted in the kitchen but when I came back to fetch her she met me halfway up the stairs - that got my heart rate going. After that every time she saw the stairs she headed straight for them. Thank goodness we don't have any stairs at home!!