NO More Crib:- Living The Big Girl Life

A few weeks ago the hubby and I had a squabble.😨 Yes, it happens. Anyways, he came home the next day and decided to cross something off the honey-do list (months overdue) to get back in my good graces.

I was in the twins’ room doing a photoshoot when he called me and to my surprise he converted her crib to a day bed.  I should have been excited, but I wasn’t.  I can have a flare for the dramatic. Who me? Say it ain’t so. In my mind, I saw us moving her to our bed after she fell asleep then breaking down her crib and having balloons everywhere.

She heard me talking to her dad and quickly came to check it out. She was so excited. She couldn’t contain it. SHE JUMPED FOR JOY. She was happy. In that moment I realized it wasn’t about me. She was happy and that’s all that mattered.

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During the first two weeks she would pop up in our bedroom or downstairs while we watched tv. We threatened to make her bed back into a crib.  She wasn’t a fan of that.  Since then she’s been sleeping through most nights and she comes to get us if she needs to use the potty or she just yells it over the monitor. Something to the effect of “I have to poop mom.” Lol

Having her roll big girl style has provided much help for me in the mornings.  She wakes up, uses the potty, brushes her teeth, then comes to find us. I love it when she says, “I woke up, mom, what are we doing today?” She craves adventures just as much as mommy and I absolutely love it!

I can’t wait until she can make the bed and fold her blanket. Baby steps I know. Baby steps.

A mom can dream….

~TOODLES~
Stacey

What A Wonderful Day, Mom!

A Sunday afternoon in Georgetown, Washington, DC; what could be better? Nothing, besides hearing my daughter’s sweet little voice repeatedly saying, “WHAT A WONDERFUL DAY, MOM” as we played in the gardens.

It was, in fact, quite a wonderful day because we left the twins at home with their dad.  It felt wonderful being out with just her.  We had a quick picnic, courtesy of Wendy’s; played soccer, chased butterflies and even birds.  We were careful to sneak up on the birds and we didn’t tell the rabbits. Shh

The grounds were much smaller than I expected, but nonetheless, worth the trip.  It was very quiet, at times feeling like you were experiencing the wonders of your very own garden, except a more manicured one.  I would say plan no more than two hours for your visit.  Just enough time to relax and recharge before your next adventure.

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It was only the hottest day of the year with temperatures feeling like almost 110 degrees.  In the cool of the shade it was quite a lovely day, but every step in the sun felt like five steps in the desert. It was time to cool off.

Georgetown Waterfront Park seemed like a great local as any, and less than fifteen minutes away.  I’ve driven many times to and from Georgetown University Hospital when I was pregnant with our first child, but had no idea what I was passing along the way.

As I drove, anticipation was building. Great shops and beautiful restaurants adorned the streets. There’s something here for everyone.  There are lots of garages to park in or you can scurry for free parking at the end of K street.  There’s a three-hour limit Monday through Saturday, but free on Sundays.

This park is a great place for a run; your little ones will enjoy splashing around (be sure to bring bathing suits) and the views aren’t so shabby either.  It’s a great place to paddle board, kayak or just people watch.  I recommend a trip in the late afternoon; bring some snacks and a blanket for some good family time, then send the kids home and enjoy a date night with your honey or even just ice cream and a stroll.  I haven’t been here to watch the sunset but can only imagine how beautiful it would be.

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And, in honor of National Ice Cream Day, how could we resist 😉

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More Sundays should be made of these.

Today was a wonderful day!

~TOODLES~
Stacey

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

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You could and probably will get lost in time here, like we did.  Two hours should be sufficient to tour the grounds said the young ladies as they checked us in. Five hours later and we didn’t even see the entire garden 🙊🙈 We were one of the first visitors and probably one of the last ones there, but we had the best time!

The Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, located in Henrico County, Richmond VA, was recently voted the 2ND BEST PUBLIC GARDEN in NORTH AMERICA by USA Today readers.  It is definitely worth the cost of admission!

The butterfly exhibit is the perfect place to showcase your inner Sherlock Homes. Daily at 10 a.m new butterflies are released. Come and watch caterpillars metamorphose into gorgeous butterflies or simply enjoy them flying around in their natural habitat. I dare you to not get wrapped up in this excursion. I dare you!

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The smile only a butterfly landing on your head can bring
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There’s so much to see here and I now realize I have way too many photos (what else is new) to share despite not experiencing the entire garden, so stay tuned for the next chapter in this series.

Listen, if there was a photo rehab, I would be a permanent vacationer. Lol, I’ll be the first to admit, I have a photo problem but don’t you enjoy living vicariously through my camera and or phone lens?

I digress..

Part two of the series will be up later this week. See you soon!

~TOODLES~
Stacey

Don’t forget to like, comment and or share. Let me know you’re out there!

HAPPY 1ST BIRTHDAY!!

DOUBLE THE LAUGHTER,
DOUBLE THE FUN,
JAEDENELLE’S TURNING ONE!!

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The year has certainly flown by; and, it won’t choose now for a breather, so let’s celebrate with Tutu’s and Bowties! Who doesn’t?

The theme proved much harder, especially the color SEAFOAM (have you ever heard of it?) and, if that wasn’t enough, whose brilliant idea was it to travel the weeks leading up to a party, not for one, but TWO BABIES? I would be that genius or crazy mama depending on how you think. 😀 We went from MD to NJ to NY to NJ to FL to NJ then back to MD in two weeks. Yes you read that right, in TWO WEEKS! Whew, did I mention that hubby wasn’t even with us? 😯 Like I said, genius or crazy mama?

It was a stressful time for the babes and me, but I was determined to make their day one to remember.   Just about everything was a DIY-er, another not so smart idea. I actually crossed a few things off the list because there just wasn’t enough time. Isn’t it funny how time seems constant when our to-do list is empty, yet passes at the speed of light when we have things to do. I swear everytime I looked at the clock it was 6 p.m. 👀

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My favorite DIY-er were the rosettes. I think it provided a great backdrop for the table as well as for photo-props. It’s a simple project, but requires quite a bit of time. I definitely will be making them again for my daughter’s 3rd birthday Princess Party!

Despite all my planning everything came down to the wire and the party started hours later, but if you’ve been to any of my parties you know the start time is just a suggestion (he-he) but from the smiles I would say it was worth the wait; even the HUGE POT OF EXTRA SPICY cabbage that barely had leftovers.

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I hope you enjoyed checking out these pics! We had a blast!!! If you weren’t here, you truly missed a great one!

See you at the next celebration…

~TOODLES~<
Stacey

Cake:- SweetsbyBee (Her cakes are just as amazing as her, well maybe not as amazing)

Flowers:- My hubby (I think he missed me during my travels) 😚

Candy:- Sixlets, A.C Moore

Tuxedo boxes:- Dollar Store

Cake stands:- Home Goods

My tutu:- DIY

Clean Freak?

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No that’s not my home. He-he, but wouldn’t it be nice!

You know how you see photos on Instagram and then you say to yourself, oh I bet that’s rarely the case, or its all for show, or with three kids I bet her home gets really messy….seriously though….my house is almost, always clean and organized…Okay, dusting (people still do that?) has become a thing of the past now that I have twins; but I do keep a clean house.

Here’s a peek at my humble abode.

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The first two levels are great but it’s that third level that most people don’t see. Well, when we sleep in our bedroom regularly it’s clean.  I think the answer to this dilemma is having guests.  Whenever the guest room is occupied for extended stays….our bedroom is clean and sparkly (as my three-year old says). So who’s coming to visit? I dread cleaning it now, but it must be done. Just not this weekend when my kids and hubby are away. I WILL NOT CLEAN ANYTHING. This is my vow! I’m not even running the vacuum. Lol

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This pic doesn’t fully capture the all-encompassing abyss.

The term OCD never existed for me while growing up.  We may not have had much, but we had enough. We had love. We had laughter. We had fun, and tons of it! And we had a clean home.  I was raised with my grandparents in the rural parts of Jamaica and although it was close to a dozen of us in a three bedroom house it was mainly clean (minus the boy’s room, the bed was always made though). Clothes were never piled up on the floor or things laying out-of-place.  The house was always clean including the shiny, cold tile that had to be cleaned while on all fours with a coconut brush EVERY Saturday until you could see your reflection.  Do you even know what a coconut brush is?

Like I said, we had a clean home.  As I’ve grown into my adult years I have realized that I may slightly have OCD tendencies. Okay, maybe more than slightly. Shhhh, what triggered these thoughts was my hubby grabbing three water bottles for his trip yesterday.  He grabbed two off the door (leaving three there) then one from the organized water tray.  I can’t remember if I had grabbed one from the organized tray before he grabbed his, so naturally he’s getting the blame.

When I went to grab a water. I scolded my husband in my mind. I quickly replaced the bottle on the organized tray (making sure the letters were aligned with the others) then grabbed one from the door (The one that had an indentation) and thought, “seriously, who does that?” Isn’t that a sign of OCD?

I hate things out-of-order.  I hate dishes piled in the sink (whew, Lord, deep breaths).   Yes, I know hate is a strong word but I really do HATE it.  If there’s a place for something, for heaven’s sake just put it where it belongs.  If it was up to me, we would live in a VERY modern contemporary (idk exactly what that is. Lol, but I like it) home with secret storage EVERYWHERE and everything white, minus the stainless steel appliances. That will never happen, but a girl can dream.

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I have not been clinically diagnosed and no I’m not nearly as bad as Monk.  Having three kids under three is quite a bit to handle but I strive to have a clean home for my sanity.  I literally get discombobulated when things aren’t organized. Like really, I get anxious and feel burdened. There’s something wrong with me, isn’t it?

What are some of your pet peeves? How do you handle it?

Who wakes up and writes about this stuff on their kid-free weekend? This crazy mama.

Thanks for reading 😘

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Happy Saturday!!

~TOODLES~
Stacey

TWELVE MONTHS

I know I’ve been MIA for quite some time. The past month has been pretty hectic. Lots of traveling, which I hope to share with you soon; but until then…

Time for your check up!

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Is that a let’s go mom face or a please don’t make me go mom face?

Yesterday, the twins had their 12 month checkup. I really need to start bringing the hubby with me because these babes are BUSY.  It probably didn’t help that I left their stroller, but I was running late and you know how doctor offices are when you are more than five minutes late. So I grabbed both babies in my arms with big sister hanging on to my dress and off we went.

They are growing quite well, especially compared to Jayla, who lives in the five to ten percentile much of her life.  Batman weighed 20 lbs 15.6 ounces.  Nelle is still behind at 19 lbs 2 ounces. She’s always lagging, even when they were wombmates.  Jayla didn’t break 20 lbs until she was about two years old.  At least Nelle’s leading her big sister.  When it comes to height, Nelle stands tall at 29.5 inches, beating out her big brother of three minutes by half an inch.

After the nurse completed all the measurements, I asked her to watch the twins while I took Jayla to the little girls room.  MY SON LOST IT! He screamed the moment I left.  When I returned she was standing with him just outside the girl’s room; another nurse was holding Nelle and both were eating a cracker. It was the only way to calm them down.  The look on the nurses faces was priceless. In exasperation one said, “Can I go home now? I won’t be any good the rest of the day” It was only noon. Lol

The twins wouldn’t let me put them down. I guessed they figured I was going to leave the room again.  During all the tears and whining, the doc assessed them and I learned we are behind on a few things that were mastered effortlessly when I only had one child.  The twins are still bottle-fed and my littlest lady refuses to fall asleep without her bottle. Both NO-NO’S with their pediatrician. She gave me the mean look which was probably hard for her. She’s the sweetest thing! I never feel rushed with her and she works around my twins.  Another area in which the twins, or should I say mom is lagging, is reading to the little babes.

Operation read more and bottle weaning began right after we got home from their doc visit.  They refused to drink milk from the sippy cups so far.  I have three months until their 15 month checkup to break these habits.  I think we can do it and we will because mommy didn’t like being scolded by the doc.

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This picture sums up his day perfectly. I can hear Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” playing. Lol

In other news, Nelle is working on tooth number five while big brother is rolling full steam ahead with numbers five through eight! 👀 . Naps still elude them, but at least they are still sleeping through the night.

No adventures for us until the weekend.  Hope you have a lovely Thursday!

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So happy this is the final of the first year photo-shoot! Trying to get them to lie still and look at the camera at the same time IS WORK, but a great feeling when you’ve captured it.
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~TOODLES~
Stacey

The Twins Take to the Sky!!

FLORIDA here we come!

Big sister took her first flight just before she turned one and she was a joy. The twins will be one next wek! I can only hope I have enough good karma. Am I hoping for too much with two babies and a toddler? Read on to find out.

So we were flying out of the Trenton NJ Airport (another first) at 5 in the afternoon.  The adventures began before we even made it to the gate.  My oldest had a meltdown when she realized we were leaving her carseat behind.  Needless to say, her carseat came along for the flight along with the twins pack and play (their bed while away from home). Those were the only two things that checked in before the terminal was closed.

They told us we had to check our carry on bags at the gate. To our surprise the cost per bag doubled from $30 to $60!! With five passengers that’s $300. Almost half the cost of our plane tickets. On top of that we would have to pay $300 to return home. Of course we refused to pay. In the end we paid $30 for the oversized carry on. Walked outside, up the stairs and boarded.

You know those passengers who you hate because you’ve been sitting there buckled up ready for takeoff impatiently waiting. Yes that was us but at least they didn’t page us over the intercom. Wheels up? Not yet. With myself, mom, the twins and the passenger already seated in our row another problem. Only four oxygen masks are alloted per row. She was reluctant to leave. Thanks to the gentleman across the row who switched seats with her.

FINALLY it was time for take off. By this point it felt like I’ve ran a marathon. I had a deep breath, said a prayer and we took to the skies. The twins did great. Having the empty seat really helped. If we could be so lucky on our flight home.

Did the twins behave on the return flight? It was a night flight.

How did we handle our baggage probblem?

Tell you all about it soon.

~TOODLES~
Stacey

ELEVEN months!

Eleven months of pure joy, attitude and everything in between. Don’t you just love these faces?
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My twinsies are almost at that juncture where I will no longer give their age by months. It makes me nostalgic because I will miss all these little milestones I live for, but it also means lots of discovery ahead.

Together they have a combined almost eight teeth, each having four. Twice the pain; hasn’t been fun for anyone around me.

What are they eating?
A better question is what aren’t they eating. They no longer want anything to do with baby food. At the sight of real food they will toss their bottles.  They will even yell (in their own language, of course) at you when they want more. My son devours meat so I have to feed him veggies first.  While they are greedy  (many would say, like mommy) they love to share. Nelle doesn’t like to hear no thank you for an answer; she will push whatever it is she’s eating in your mouth until you accept it.

They enjoy throwing balls but my fave pastime is when they give me kisses. My son has been doing it for quite some time but little sis recently started joining in on the fun.  When they do something wrong they will lay their heads on my lap or they will give me kisses.  How do they learn these things so quickly?

Just like their big sister, I am blessed to say they are very good listeners. If I tell them not to do something or come see me, they will do just that.  I’m so proud of the little people they are becoming. I can’t wait until they can hold a conversation. I might regret it later if they talk as much though. The only time big sis isn’t talking is when she’s sleeping.

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No, you didn’t imagine it.  OUR BABY BOY IS WALKING!!! When he walks, he resembles a mummy or a zombie with his hands completely outstretched in front of himself. It’s so cute! He started taking steps earlier this month but nothing consistently until Sunday while I was away spending the day with his big sister. I didn’t actually see him walking until yesterday.

More about my BIG boy. He’s sporting a size 18 to 24 month shirt in case you were wondering why it’s a little loose. He’s now wearing size FOUR diapers. 👀 Ms. Jayla can still fit a size four diaper and she’s almost three!! If you haven’t bought diapers in a while, the larger the size the less diapers are in the box. At this rate, I just might have to potty train him in the next few months. I don’t want to think of either situation so here’s a few more pics.

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I sure wish we could freeze time, but we are rolling full steam ahead. Who will talk first? I think Jaeden will. Check back and find out 😉

~TOODLES~
Stacey

Happy Birthday, America!

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The year of firsts are sadly coming to a close for my twinsies.  Last weekend was independence weekend; mom and auntie visited.  Aside from the weather, at times it was a very lovely weekend.

After dinner we drove into the city to watch the fireworks from Joint Base Anacostia. The National Monument and the Capitol provided backdrops for the beautiful fireworks being displayed on the Potomac River. The fireworks were another first with my twins. My big girl, who is normally scared of EVERYTHING, was fine.

On another note, my baby girl now has TWO teeth.  One on the bottom and the other on top. Who grows teeth in such fashion? My daughter, that’s who. Lol

I hope you had a lovely weekend with great food and great people.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA!!!

~TOODLES~
Stacey

To Separate or Not to Separate?

My boy/girl twins will be celebrating their first birthday next month!!!!  The question of separating or not to separate, well, that is the million dollar question! That has been plaguing me for quite some time now.  For the past two or three months I thought for sure I knew what I would do, and that was separating them, but now I am having second thoughts.

They currently share what was the man cave/office. The tiniest room in our home.  The plan was to leave our son in this room while converting the guest room into our baby girl’s room.

I must admit, a part of me does not want to relinquish the guest room because that’s been my place of escape, my serenity (well, before my outdoor oasis) and our second bedroom as we’ve been sleeping in there since the twins were born.  It provided me an opportunity to be close to our kids while avoiding an unnecessary flight of stairs, making nighttime feedings much easier.

We are not co-sleepers.  Not that there’s anything wrong with co-sleeping, it’s just not something we do.  Our oldest slept next to me in a bassinet which she outgrew rather quickly, plus with two babies that was an impossible task and I didn’t want to waste money on another bassinet. They’ve been sleeping in their own crib since we brought them home and they are great sleepers, thank God.

Now it’s decision time. As I stated, they will turn one next month and if I’m giving them their own room there’s so much to do in such little time while planning their party.  Aside from the party theme I’m at a loss. It’s a lot harder than I thought it would be combining their parties. I can’t be as girly with the decor as I’ve been accustomed to, but I know the party will be a hit.

I’m about 80 percent leaning towards letting them room together.  I feel this will give them more of an opportunity to strengthen their bond.  They will be talking soon and it will be cute to peek in on them, via the baby monitor that is, and watch their little antics.  I know they are two completely different individuals and I want to foster that growth, but I also want to allow them to enjoy that unique bond they share.

What would you do? Would you separate them or let them room together for a little while longer?

~TOODLES~
Stacey