Friday, February 16, 2018

These two are two!!

Dear Daughters,

You are two years old!! This has been such a fun year! You are learning to do so much and are so entertaining to watch as you interact with each other.  You are always watching out for one another.  It’s so sweet when one of you is sad or hurt, because the other will immediately come over to give you a hug for comfort.   

Every time someone babysits you, they comment afterwards about how much food you both eat. It blows their minds that someone your age eats so much. Two of your favorite things to eat right now are “Ri Kikis” (Rice Krispies) and “Moon Cheese” (provolone cheese, which is circular shaped). Really, you like any kind of cheese. As Eliza often says, it’s so “nummy!”

You are both sweet girls who keep me laughing all day long.  You love to sing,  blow bubbles,  prepare food in your new kitchen,  play with “pee doh” (play-doh), and to be outside.  If it were up to you, we would be outside ALL of the time.


When someone asks how to tell you apart from your sister, one clue I give them is to look for the girl who is holding things in her arms.  You love to carry around stuffed animals, water bottles, or anything you can get your hands on, really.  I often have to convince you to put all of your valuable  possessions into a bag, so it’s easier for you to tote them around. Your favorite things to carry around are “puff balls” (craft pom poms) and your white stuffed owl, which you call your “Hoo hoo.”

You are always keeping your eye out for babies.  Even if you can’t see the actual baby, you have to point out when you see a stroller or infant car seat.  You also listen for them.  One of the cutest things you say is “Baby sad,” whenever a baby is crying.

It’s fun to see how good you are at figuring things out.  When there’s something that you want to do, you don’t give up very easily. You even learned how to put on and take off some of your shoes!

I love all of the things you say.  One of my favorites right now is when you say your name.  It sounds like you are saying “Lala.”  You used to call water “wawy” and your dad was devastated when that stopped.  I don’t know what he’s going to do when you and your sister stop calling your blankets “beebees.”


My favorite time of the day is when you wake up in the morning.  I walk into your room to get you out of your crib and the first thing you say is always, “I want to see Daddy.” You sure love your dad and are always bummed if you don’t wake up in time to catch him before he goes to work.  I don’t feel much jealousy, though, so don’t worry.  All day long, you say, “I want Mommy!” or “Hold me, Mommy!” When you wake up from naps, the most common thing you do is hold your blanket to your face and say, “Beebee soft. Awww.”

You still love to use your “phone,” which is actually a calculator.  I often find you making calls on it.  Your two favorite people to call are Elmo and your aunt Anna.  Speaking of Anna, you also like to be on the lookout for her car as we drive around town.  You often shout, “I see Anna car!” It happens anytime there is a minivan or any car that somewhat resembles a van.    

You are the main reason why we had to put a lock on our kitchen trash can.  I had to stop you from throwing away things that aren’t actually trash.  You just love to throw things away. Even diapers.  For a few months, you always insisted on throwing your diaper away, but I think that the novelty has worn off now.

Hide-and seek is your new favorite game.  And you’re actually quite good at it.  You find a place to hide and stay there without making a sound until someone finds you.  

Your strong will is starting to show.  You are no longer content to be pulled in the wagon.  You want to be the one who is pulling it.  Or running up ahead.  Or exploring in the bushes nearby.

Love you both so much!


P.S. You both love to look at pictures of yourselves and your cousins on my phone. When we were doing this the other day, I discovered that my phone will make picture videos for me. So, here's one of the two of you.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

One and a half!

18 months

12 August 2017

Dear E &L,

You are at such a fun age! I love just watching you.  The other day I just sat on the couch as you moved things around the room.  You have these little ideas that get into your heads and you figure out how to carry them out.  

When Grandma Cox came to visit this summer, she brought you a Signing Time DVD.  One of her many awesome yard sale finds.  I quickly realized what a good idea this was and since then you two have been hooked on all the videos that I've checked out from the library.  Now you know lots of signs and are able to communicate a little bit better with me.  The signs that you both use the most are dog, bird, water, and time.  When you sign ‘time,’ it’s because you want to watch Baby Signing Time. Sometimes E climbs on the stool in the bathroom and sign ‘wash hands.’  I’m hoping that your love of hand washing continues when we get to potty training. One of my favorite things L does is to bring me your shoes so I’ll put them on and then you sign ‘car’ because you want to go somewhere.  

You both love to climb on things.  We currently keep all the kitchen chairs in the living room because you and your sister will use the chairs to help you climb on top of the kitchen table.  I do let you climb on the coffee table.  E, you do this cute thing up there where you move your feet back and forth really quickly. L, you figured out how to climb into your high chair when the tray is off, how to climb out of your crib (it wasn’t on the lowest level), and how to climb out of the pack ‘n’ play.  While we were staying at your cousin Carter’s house, there were no buckles on the high chair and you would stand up in the chair at almost every meal.  I’m so glad that I can strap you in again.

We had lots of great time with family this summer.  We went camping with your Jones family.  You really liked being outdoors.  Probably the highlight for you was going up and down the ramp on Grandpa’s trailer.  The only downside was that neither one of you slept well.  Both of you ended up in bed with Dad and me on a full size air mattress.

We also traveled up to Utah for the Cox reunion.  I was so impressed that you did so well in the car for such a long trip.  L, one of your favorite activities was playing with a box of tissues I brought for you.  You made cute little “woo!” sounds as you pulled them out and made it all the way to the end of the box.  The back seat was covered in white. While we were up there, your aunts and cousins fought over you the entire time.  They just love you so much.  You got more exposure to dogs and cats and started to warm up to them, especially Carter’s dog, Jessie. At church up there, L noticed the person conducting the music and started waving your arm around just like her.  It was the best.

You are both really into reading books now.  I love it.  We have to go the library frequently so that I am not always reading the same books over and over. One of the books that I’ve read to you dozen of times is called Toot Toot Beep Beep. L, you were reading it to yourself one time and I heard you say, “Chugga Chugga,” which is one of the noises of the cars.  

You are always jabbering as your walk around the house and starting to say a few words.  Not surprising, one of the words E says is ‘bird.’ I also bought you a bird shirt that you love to wear. L's two newest words are “blueberry” and “belly button.”

L, You love to put things on your head. I’m going to blame your Dad for this one.  He would always put bloomers on your head like a hat and now you bring shorts to me and request to wear them on your head.

E, one of the cute things you do right now is that you occasionally ask to have your diaper changed.  You get a clean diaper out of the drawer and lay down on your back.  One time you saw me putting diaper cream on your sister, so you later grabbed the cream, lay down,  pretended to put it on yourself, and waited for me to come and give you some.  It's too bad you're not this willing every time you need a diaper change. 

I love you so both much.  I am just so lucky that I get to hang out with you all of the time.   


P.S. I almost forgot to tell you about the great news we recently got.  Dad and I have been trying for over a year to figure out how we were going to get the $350,000 bill paid for your NICU stay.  Due to a bunch of circumstances, the insurance company wasn’t going to pay it and neither was the organization that told us for months that they would.  We were denied when we applied for financial assistance from the hospital, but the person who gave me that bad news said there was one more thing we could try for.  Of course, I said we’d like to apply  I called back to see how much of a discount they were going to give us and was informed that our balance was now $0.  I couldn’t believe it.  Every time I think about it, I still can’t believe how blessed we’ve been. 

Friday, May 12, 2017

12-15 Months

Dear Daughters,

You are at such a fun age. I love how everything is so exciting for you. Here are a few things I've loved experiencing with you for the first time:

-watching birds when we go on walks around the neighborhood
-seeing tons of butterflies at Desert Botanical Garden
-swinging in Grandma and Grandpa Jones’ backyard
-going down a slide at the park with Hallie and Jane

First Words (Including words that you mimic)
L: Mama, Achoo, Dada, More, Here, Thank you
E: Mama, Dada, Purple, Up, Cracker

Aunt Marissa won the family caption contest: "Mime training boot camp"

You are both getting pretty good at climbing up and down the stairs, drinking out of sippy cups, and reading books. You used to only want to eat books. I'm glad you like looking at the pictures now, too. Your favorite books right now are ones with photographs of real things in them. My favorite thing is how you stand in front of me and then back up into my lap.

You are starting to practice coloring with crayons. Our practices usually are cut short by one of your eating the crayons or trying to color on things other than paper. You are also starting to learn your body parts. You are both great at finding your tummies.

Both of you love to peek through things.  You’ll look through the legs of a chair or through an opening of the easel and just start laughing.  It’s so funny.  

Outside is your happy place. You don't even necessarily need to be doing something. As long as you're outdoors, you are good.

Our solution for owning only one car.

Baby Ducks!

Wishing you were outside

You have definitely been expressing your need for independence when it comes to feeding yourself. If Dad or I try to feed you something, you refuse. If I put it on your tray, you gobble it up. I've been trying to give you more practice using a spoon. It always makes a mess, but that seems to be how you prefer it. It's not unusual to see you both walking around the house with a spoon in your hands. E, the other day I saw you putting your animal cracker on a spoon instead of just putting it in your mouth. L, you are already starting to be a picky eater. I hope it's just a short phase.

You are still obsessed with phones, computers, and pretty much anything electronic. We met some family members at Chuck E. Cheese last week and you had a blast. Your great aunt Bonnie wanted to spoil you by taking you to get a prize from the ticket counter. She took E up there with her. With all the prizes available, the thing that you wanted the most was the calculator that the employees use. When we got home, I pulled out two calculators that I had from when I was a teacher. You've been playing with them nonstop ever since, pretending that they are your own little phones. You brought them on our walk the other day and I could hear L talking to people on the phone as we strolled throughout the neighborhood. 

You both got an early ticket to nursery at church. I was just called to serve as a nursery leader, so you girls get to come with me. You've only been once so far, but your favorite part is definitely the bubbles. It sure beats trying to keep you both happy during Sunday School by myself (with help from some friends).

Your biggest regret in life is that you aren't quite tall enough to climb on top of the couch or the coffee table by yourself.

I've decided that you may have a future career in interior design. You love to rearrange the chairs by pushing them around the kitchen and move all of the little rugs to new locations.

When you want something, you reach your arm toward it and shake your hand.  It’s a bit counter-intuitive for me, so I sometimes forget that you are asking for something, rather than saying that you don’t want it.

One day, Dad went upstairs to get E from her crib and left you alone. When they were coming down the stairs, you were waiting at the gate and started clapping. I was sad I missed it, but luckily you did it again another day.

When you are excited, you shake your head back and forth.  This looks like you don’t want something, so I was a little confused at first.  

You LOVE to spin. Sometimes you'll even spin yourself around when there isn't any music playing. I love my little dancer.

Thanks for being such great little girls!!  I love you so much!!


P.S. Your dad got a little confused about when Mother's Day was, so he had you girls give me my presents a week early. I loved the poems that you wrote for me. 

Monday, February 20, 2017

ONE YEAR OLD!!!!!!!!!

Dear Daughters,

You are one!!! I can hardly believe it! And boy, am I in trouble. I took down the fence because I was tired of you both screaming every time I went into the kitchen or the bathroom.  It’s opened up a whole new world of ways for you two to get into mischief. You’ve discovered how to open cupboards. And you love it.  Dad keeps adding more and more locks.  I kind of feel bad about that, but my poor head can only take so many pot lids clanging on the floor.  Another exciting discovery in the kitchen has been the curtains.  It’s so fun to watch you both play in them and with the sliding glass door.  

We celebrated your birthday by eating chocolate cake at Grandma and Grandpa Jones’ house.  Your aunt Andrea made you some cute t-shirts and party hats to wear.  I think you liked eating the hats almost as much as you liked the cake.   

You still love to share. Sometimes you will feed Cheerios to your sister or me. It's the sweetest thing ever.

You are picking up on sign language.  I’ve only taught you two signs and the one that you use all the time is “MORE!” As in, “I want more Cheerios” or “Feed me more of that soup” or “More graham crackers, please!”

You and your sister always want to eat whatever the grownups are eating.  The other night, I was eating some yummy lasagna, but it was really hot. I gave you girls graham crackers instead.  After a while, I realized that whenever I would blow on my lasagna to cool it down, you were blowing on your graham cracker.  Too cute!

Should I be worried that you're licking the monkey's tongue?

You are walking all over the place now. I knew it wouldn't take you long to catch up with your sister. One of your new things is to open your mouth super wide as you are walking around to show your excitement. It's the best.

I went in your room after you woke up from your nap one day. You were so excited and called me “Mama!” Who knew you could fill my heart with just one little word? My elation was soon replaced by confusion as I tried to figure out what had happened to your crib. You sucked the paint right off of it and exposed the wood underneath! I guess you had been awake longer than I realized. I'm now working on protecting your crib.

You now have one little curl on the top of your head.  I’m in love with it.  I can’t wait until you get more hair.  If your hair is anything like mine, though, it will still take a while to come in.


You are such a fun girl. And adventurous, too. You love finding new places to explore.

I have a confession to make. On a regular basis, I find myself saying, "This would be so much easier if I only had one baby." Well, this month I got a little glimpse of what it would be like to have just one. Dad took E on a trip with him for a weekend, while L stayed home with me. And I was right. It was easier. I got more sleep, going to the store was a breeze, and I could give my undivided attention to my sweet little girl. But, I'm still so glad that you came to me as twins. I love seeing you play together. I can't get enough of your giggles. The greatest part about it, though, has been the fact that I've needed help. That's not something that I would have previously thought I'd be so grateful for. Ever since I was put on bed rest, I've been blown away by how blessed our family has been. It still hasn't stopped. I'm continually being served in so many ways, big and small. So, thank you for giving me the opportunity to allow people to serve our family. I hope you always remember how loved you are.

I love you both so much!! It's been one incredible year.


P.S. Thanks to your incredible aunt Andrea for lots of these amazing photos! (all the good ones)