Wednesday, August 13, 2008

A Post For Those Asking about Birthday Present Ideas

Lots of people are asking what to get the boys for their birthday, so I thought this is a good place to post my suggestions.

Quite frankly, I've never had one-year-olds before. So I'm not really any better than anyone else at guessing what sort of things they are going to like over the coming months. At this point in time, they really enjoy dropping balls into things. They like banging things. They like climbing into things. And they like soft things, such as stuffed animals and pillows.

So, if you want to get them some sort of gift, here are possible suggestions:
BATH: toddler bath towels, robes, toys, toy storage, etc.
CLOTHES: Cold-weather clothing: size 18months Warm-weather clothing: size 24months; Shoes: size 4 (Note: It's easiest for me to dress them identically or in coordinating outfits.)

FURNITURE: Kid-sized furniture for the playroom, such as little chairs, flip sofas, tables, playtents, etc.
FEEDING: Sippy cups, feeding utensils, dishes, etc. Please get BPA free (the front of the packaging will mention if it is.)
TOYS: toys to pull, push, connect, or have wheels (so they can push/pull/drive.) Also, outdoor toys for next summer could be fun (and they are probably on clearance right now!)

And of course, savings bonds, Google stock (haha, Jess!), and those sort of things are always wonderful.

Hopefully that'll be helpful to those of you who were wondering. I always have trouble shopping for... well, for pretty much everyone, but I find trying to figure out what to get toddlers especially daunting.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

27 Days of Babyhood Left

Look how close we are getting to the 1st birthday! These babies aren't going to be babies much longer. It's bittersweet, really. Months 10 and 11 have been absolutely amazing, as the boys' personalities are really becoming evident now. They are behaving less like babies and more like toddlers every day. They are both experts at climbing stairs now (we've got gates up, but they get to climb when it's time for bed.) We've got new teeth appearing each day (at least that's how it feels), and Joel is especially pleased to be testing them on his brother. (Evan's arm was covered in marks a couple days ago. Poor kid. I guess Joel is retaliating for Evan "bullying" him over the past few months.)
It's been a lovely time, really. They've been really cuddly over the past few weeks, which we are eating up, considering neither of the boys have ever really been cuddlers. Nowadays, they've been playing "Climb the Mommy/Daddy Mountain" while we lay on the floor. I guess climbing us is an exhausting feat, because once they reach the top, both lay on us for a few minutes, which makes the two of us feel like the greatest people on the planet. Then it's roll down the mountain, and off to fight over the same toy; nevermind the fact that there are probably two hundred other toys right next to them. A few bites out of Joel, a few slaps and scratches from Evan, tears shed, and back to Mommy and Daddy once again.
Beyond the fighting/playing/fighting (or vice versa on a good day), we've learned that these are FUNNY kids. They love to laugh. Games like "Fly-Swatter Mission Impossible" are especially fun. (The game consists of Mommy grabbing the fly-swatter and slapping at imaginary flies while making amazing kung-fu-like moves. It's hilarious, at least when you are 11 months old. Although Todd seems to appreciate it, as well.) The boys find joy in just about everything, whether it's a game of chase, playing Shake-the-Gates-as-Hard-as-We-Can, chewing shoes (I don't know where they come from, they just keep reappearing!), or whatever, life is just generally fun when you've got a twin to share it with.

We've been sick lately (Todd first, then the boys, now I'm finally getting over it), so I haven't had time to take pictures or post too much.) Here are a few pictures over the past few weeks. Enjoy!

We borrowed this horse strictly for pictures. I didn't realize how huge it was! They fell off pretty quickly.

A day in the pool

Not walking on his own yet, but Joel loves to stand!

Scrapbook page

P.S. A BIG THANK YOU to those who have been sending me coupons! I'm loving them! I've been getting some great deals, thanks to you all. Keep 'em coming! (Yesterday's shopping alone: I believe I bought around $200 worth of items for an out-of-pocket cost of around $45, give or take!)

As for Julia's question re: diapers, we've gone back to cloth (Joel gets rashes in disposables), but we use Pampers wipes. When I get coupons that I don't use, I can trade them for ones that I need. Also, expired coupons go to military families (they can use them), so even those are useful.