Tuesday, January 31, 2012


The boys love IKEA almost as much as I do. 

Any guesses how many times we heard "mom, can we have ice cream now?"


M (the righty)
P (the lefty)

Monday, January 30, 2012

P&M's 3rd Birthday Party: Sneak Peek!

I can hardly contain my excitement! Planning is (and has been) in full force. Can I just explain how much I love doing this?! 

Do you remember your third birthday party? Probably not. BUT - I figure if I take enough pictures and document every once of detail related to P&M's third party they will DEFINITELY remember it!

The theme: DINOSAURS! (Chosen by P&M). Months ago we narrowed it down to either fire trucks or dinosaurs. They chose dinosaurs.

First step: The invite! The photo was taken by ATP. The invite is from Etsy.

Curious what the birthday boys will be wearing at their party!? They'll be rockin' these sweet T's made by yours truly. Pretty good for an accountant, eh? They were inspired by Etsy and the invite. I made them using my new FAVORITE tool, the Silhouette. I'll try to write more about that later. Is there a limit on how many posts I can write about one birthday party? Hopefully not.

 And of course, little treat bags for our buddies!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

2T - 3T

Boys: some day you'll understand that the reason you spend many days wearing pants that are several inches too short isn't because I don't have the time to buy you new sizes or that I don't notice they are too short.

I just happen to be a sentimental person and the actual transition to the next size is a difficult one! Packing up all of the smaller sizes and moving them to the basement is SAD! I think partly because it's a permanent thing. It's not like we'll be able to pull out those adorable size 12 month matching onesies in a few years and try them on and admire how CUTE you are. Not going to happen. 

I absolutely love watching you grow, learn, and say new things every day....but it's just happening TOO darn fast.


I buy the majority of the boys' clothes at Children's Place. Want to know one of my favorite parts about Children's Place? The size categories include, "newborn", "baby boy", and "boy". And the "baby boy" category goes all the way up to 4T. It makes me feel better that even though I'm buying a larger size for my boys, it's still in the "baby boy" category. (For now...)

(Excuse the mess on the dining room table - another remodeling project is in process!)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

2 for the Price of 1

Most things in life are two for the price of two. In some extra special cases they are two for the price of two hundred.

(Wait - I think Babies R' Us offered a 10% twin discount. Anyway...)

After nearly hitting our out-of-pocket maximum for our health insurance plan in 2011 (ambulance ride, 2 ER trips, ear infections, etc. etc. etc.) I finally got creative.

It goes a little somethin' like this.

2 sick boys?

Appointment for ONE. 


(I usually make the appointment under the 'sicker' boy's name). They are kind of like a package deal. The doctor always looks at the other one anyway!

Listen to me, all self-asserting like I've saved a ton of money. I've probably saved 2-3 co-pays over the last whole entire YEAR. We're talking $40-$60 dollars. But for some reason it feels good in a "winning" sort of way.

Kind of like when you "forget" that you have milk on the bottom rack of your cart at the grocery store and the checker-outer-lady doesn't notice? Yeah, that's how I feel.

[Mom: you'll appreciate knowing the boys inherited my patience when it comes to sitting in a doctor's office waiting for the doctor. Remember all of those knee-related doctor appointments?!]

Despite how terribly sick the boys look in the above pictures, we were able to walk out with one ear infection. I knew exactly which boy and which ear (P's left ear). But thankfully Dr. B checked all four ears. Hopefully we all sleep better tonight.

Good night!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Insta-Weekend 1.22.12

Our friend, Josie
Skype and a snack!
P-corn party! All for poopin' in the potty
Dinner with our girlfriends!
Our first REAL fire in the new house. Seeing this picture reminds me that the mantle needs some lovin'. Add it to the project list!
Helping make blueberry muffins. Emphasis on the blueberries.

The boys decide most nights at some point that they don't want their diapers on. Would be fine except they will still potty at night. This picture makes me laugh. See Mason's shiner? He fell and bumped his eye on the fireplace. First of many I'm sure.
We got out the LADDER - it was like Christmas morning! We had it hidden and told the boys they forgot to send it with the bed. 
Sunday morning. The boys got up early and went potty. Ben put them back to bed and when I opened my eyes it was NINE TWENTY SIX and the boys were still sleeping. Are you kidding me? That has maybe never happened in the last 35.5 months. It was fantastic!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Giant Jenga

"As seen in a bar".

Inspired by a game we saw being played in a bar in Chicago, Ben made this giant Jenga set for the boys out of 2x3 boards (thanks for the correction, Dad!). He then cut them into pieces and sanded each one down.

 It's perfect for playing dominos, playing Jenga, and just building things. Dad even let them paint and color on the blocks.

Because the blocks are so big, a tall stack is more tolerant of the not-so-gentle hands of an almost three year old. (Or two of them).

Cool, huh?

Monday, January 16, 2012

Insta-Weekend 1.15.12

Play date at the indoor park with our buddies

Can you tell which mom forgot the swim trunks?

The demo part is so fun!!
Slippers / Earmuffs!

The boys love their shovels. Despite the lack of snow they brought them to the park with Erika and used them to scoop sand. 
Have I ever posted pictures of this?
More forts. This one reminds me of a red tent I had that went on my bunk bed when I was young. 
After 7 years I broke down and paid someone to groom my dog. He's now clean, can see out of his eyes, and no longer looks and smells like a stray dog. It was so worth the money!
Park time with Erika! (I LOVE random picture text updates while I'm at work!)

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Pond Hockey

There are a lot of ponds in this area. I guess that goes without saying in a state with 10,000 lakes. But when we started looking for a new house I said I would never buy a house with a pond. Well guess what? I now have a house with a pond. 

So I'm choosing to embrace it. As long as it's not much colder than 30 degrees and there's no wind, I'm embracing it. The boys got some hockey gear for Christmas and are loving the pond. As the saying goes..."when in Rome..."

We've put them on skates (and Dad even made stands out of PVC pipe) but they're a long way from being able to skate on their own. (Hence the lack of pictures while on skates). It was pretty funny. So we're focusing on boot hockey for now.

Hopefully they can figure it out on their own, though. Us Iowans know nothing about the sport.


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Double Deuce

When Erika called me at work to tell me that "it" had actually happened for the first time, I'm certain my coworkers thought someone had called to tell me I had won the lottery. I could not contain my excitement. "It" was #2 in the potty rather than the pants.

In my head I've had a goal of getting this whole potty trained thing behind us before their 3rd birthday. A more-than-reasonable goal in my personal opinion. 

How did that happen, you ask?

Well, bribes (despite how appealing) were only mildly helpful. I took the advice of a friend and didn't allow them to wear pants. (Thanks Beth!) I know - it's a little cold for that. And they don't like not wearing pants. 


I had a little sit down with them. Ben said I was being a hard-a#^. But I was sick of cleaning up poop and was feeling bad for the poop Erika had to clean up. And while I'm more than tolerant of accidents, these were intentional incidents. Not accidents.

The conversation went like this:

Me: "Boys. Look at my eyes. Wearing pants is a privilege. And you've lost yours. No more wearing pants until you decide to use the potty."

The boys looked at me with wide eyes and they understood exactly what I was saying.

Some of my favorite quotes since they've started pooping in the potty:

  • "Mom - we make you happy?" (Awww! For days I tried guilting them into going by telling them how sad and mad I was that they were choosing to not use the potty. It helped!)
  • "Mom - where's my 'hundred M&M's?" (At one point I promised them 100 M&M's if they did it). While I had forgotten that I said that, they did not forget. Thankfully, even 1 M&M is a huge treat so I was able to count from 1, 2, 3, 99, 100 and they were satisfied after 5 M&M's. (Whew).
  • "Mom - can we ride the bus now?" (I told them they could never ride the school bus because they pooped their pants).
We are still a long ways from being officially trained, at least we are now heading in the right direction.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Insta-Weekend 1.8.12

Boys - your mom is officially one of those old people that can't stop talking about the weather. Your dad even wore shorts to and from swimming lessons tonight. Some day years down the road (hopefully at which point you've forgiven me for posting a video of you trying to poop on the world wide web) I'll remind you that this winter before your 3rd birthday was unseasonably warm. 30's and 40's and practically no snow are such an unbelievable treat in a state like Minnesota in January.

Minnesota - you better watch out. If you keep this up I might actually like you. Emphasis on the "might" part. I'm not making any promises.

It's January. That means it's officially busy season for Dad. The boys and I made a quick trip to the mall to pick up some new pants for their 3 year pictures. They've borderline outgrown the stroller but when it's just me those monkey straps are my only chance at not having to call mall security because I've lost one.

On that topic...a few weeks ago we were in line to return something at Macys'. Prior looked at me and said:
Prior: "MOM. I go by ice cream truck by myself" (a ride thing you put a quarter in that was halfway across the mall)
Me: "No way Jose - you're only two."
Prior: "But Mom - I come right back!"

I was hoping to have that conversation when he's 16. Not 2.

Anyway, I couldn't resist these hats and glasses (you know, since it's spring) from Children's Place. After I tried them on the boys didn't want to take them off.

Twins attract attention. Twins of the same sex attract even more attention. Identical twins attract even more attention. Identical twin boys dressed up like the blues brothers attract attention from 99.9% of people at the mall. I learned that pretty quickly!
If someone would have told me 4 years ago that I would have a sand box IN my basement, I would have laughed out loud.
I now have a sandbox in my basement. And it is currently the HIGHLIGHT of the day.
And a little sand on the floor in the basement is not going to stress me out!

Watching a little Elmo video waiting for our Pad Thai
Eating' our Pad Thai.
The boys even impressed everyone at the restaurant by using their manners and saying "thank you" in Thai.
Backwash levels: high to quite high

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Hooked on Phonics

For Christmas, we got the boys the toddler edition of 'hooked on phonics' to help them learn how to read. They're making some great progress.


But their memory never ceases to amaze me. In the course of a given day, they read a lot of books. But we have a lot of books, so it still amazes me. For Prior and Mason's sake, I hope their memorization skills continue. It would really come in handy during those 17-ish years of schooling they have ahead of them. Less studying would leave more time for....sports and girls. Oh great.


Friday, January 6, 2012

Insta-Weekend 12.31.11 (NYE!)

P's not crying here, but the boys have been asking to see themselves in the mirror when they're crying. Very over dramatic!
Started the new year off with some basement reorganization. Came across this treasure from when I was young. Pretty sure everyone would agree this is pretty awesome!
Applesauce snacks
Our new sticks and helmets
Our buddies!
How mice 2-year-olds eat apples

Little chefs
A fun project with our buddies on NYE
Oops - a swim bag packing snafu meant one boy had to go home shirtless!
Look at our sweet binoculars we made out of toilet paper rolls. We painted them ourselves!
Oh - and the lack of pants is related to our potty training efforts.
Lookin' for birdies
Mr. P - ready for swimming lessons!
Happy Mason. The boys asked me for 5 consecutive mornings when they woke up if it was the day we got to go to swimming lessons.
Lots of train "building"
The tires "need more air" after every 2-3 laps around the basement.
Lovin' up my Mase
A self portrait - by P
"hey Mom - watch this!"
Eatin' goulash
I can't say for sure, but I'm almost certain I haven't been out for many walks on the 31st of December in my lifetime. The boys were equipped with their stroller blankets, Hawkeye hats, and of course...snacks for the road.

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