Friday, March 26, 2010

The mall's gymboree spokesbaby!

And now, a message from our sponsors:

The mall's gymboree

These are some pictures of the mall's play area that I got from their website. It looks like it was taken later in the day, since there are so many people and older kids around. In the mornings it's usually a little quieter.

Climbing stairs and nearly walking

Eliana has managed to take about seven steps in a row. She's so close to fully walking! She's great at it if you hold her hand and little by little is gaining stability on her own.

Both girls can now climb stairs, though they haven't yet figured out how to go down. We're on the top floor of our building but there are eight steps above our apartment leading to the roof landing so I let them go up there a lot. They race each other up and laugh like crazy when I pick them up to plop them back down at the bottom to start all over again. It's also handy when carrying them up the four flights to our place, I can just put them down and walking behind them as they (sloooooooowly) make their way up. The only sucky thing is our building doesn't have a regular floor cleaner so most of the time the stairs are really too gross to let them climb, with the exception of the stairs up to the roof since we're the top apartment.

I attribute these skills mainly to lots of time spent in the mall play area. I tried copying some pictures of it from the mall's website so I'll try posting them here (I suppose I could actually take pictures of it myself but I'm too lazy...though I might have some my in-laws took. I'll check and post that shortly). Anyhow, the area is totally padded and as long as we show up early enough, and it's not a school holiday, then the place is either mostly empty or has only other babies/toddlers. Later in the day, after school lets out, it's full of older (by which I mean 5-6) kids, and they get a little too rambunctious so it's not all that safe for little kids. There the girls have learned, by themselves, to climb steps, slide down little slides, and teeter around on their feet a bit. They climb through tunnels, under arches, and ride see-saw-type toys. Oh, and steal food and toys from other babies. My girls aren't bullies, they're just so used to sharing everything they have with each other, especially food and toys, that they don't know everyone else doesn't share the same way. It's really kinda sweet, when you think about it.

This morning they pigged out over breakfast!! Leftover regular spaghetti and gluten-free shells (can anyone tell we're cleaning out our pantry for Pessach?) cooked in tomato spice sauce (the grown-ups' dinner from two nights ago), plain egg omelet, cucumber, and strawberry gamad (a slightly sweet yogurt-cheese thing). Now they're playing quietly together but soon will be diaper changes and naps. Oh, and Bracha is still in PJs (Eli is in her Mini Mouse shirt and OshKosh overalls, I love it!!!)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

New subject lines

Since it will be a looong year if I keep putting their age in the subject line, and since no one really cares about how many months old they are once they hit a year, I guess I'll start coming up with actual titles for my posts from now on.

Eliana had her surgery a week ago tomorrow, and is absolutely back to her good old self. She plays, eats, and screeches just like she always did. Yesterday we had an easy day (well, the girls did), me watching them at home in the morning while Shawn was at work and him with them at home in the evening while I was at work. But today I think I'll take them out. They got up about an hour and a half ago and the three of us played in bed for a while. Then came diaper changes, breakfast, more diaper changes, and now bottles, cookies, and games in the living room. But in an hour or so I'll try to get them out the door and we'll head to the nearby mall where they have a childrens play area. I'm going to get some prints made of pictures of them, too.

Meanwhile, enjoy these:

Saturday, March 13, 2010

One year, two healthy babies

Eliana is home, happy, and healthy. We had a great Shabbat at Saba and Savta's and she is totally herself.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

One year

Eliana had her surgery this morning. It went well. Right now we're in the pediatric surgery ward and she's fast asleep, as is her father on the cot near her crib. He'll be spending the night while I go home to be with Bracha, who has been with my mom all day (my dad, who drove us here at 6:30 this morning, has been here with us all day). I'll go home later.

The awesome news is she's not going to be here the 5-10 days they initially estimated. Instead, she's coming home tomorrow!! So we'll be at my parents' a few days but will be back at our own place next week.

Everyone here has been so nice. The whole staff is really kind, there are tons of volunteers offering everything from hot meals to ice cream, there's a library on wheels and all kinds of fun activities for kids. Our surgeon was the guy who has been following our case and seeing Eliana every other month since she was born...and also just happens to be the hospital's head of pediatric surgery, so we really felt we were in good hands.

That's about it. Thanks for your well-wishes and prayers, our baby is doing great!

Monday, March 8, 2010

One year

Ask and ye shall receive!

I hope y'all have enjoyed the new pictures. Videos will take longer since I have to reformat them first, sorry.

One year

Wanna see my tongue?!!?

Me and my Bubbie, me and my Bubbie!

Hi, my name is Eliana, and I'm cute! (and eating chocolate, I think)

Ahh, nothing like a good wooden puzzle piece in the morning!

Super mommy! Babysitting a sleeping baby + taking care of two (2) cranky babies of my own = the above

One year

Bracha saying, "I love the new Marzipan cafe thiiiiiis much!"

Eliana playing games

More of Eli from Purim

More of Bracha from Purim

On a day trip to Tel Aviv. Notice how well the new awesome BundleMes match the stroller?!

One year

Here are some more pictures to enjoy:

Bubbie and Zaidy holding Bracha and Eliana in their gorgeous new Laura Ashley dresses

First time having their own dish at a restaurant! Fettuccine alfredo from Caffit, yum!!

Eliana making faces at the camera and Bracha as tired as can be

Zaidy and Eli all dressed for shabbat in her new sparkly skirt

Bracha in her matching outfit playing with the baby gate. Notice the shoes, eh?!

One year

I know you guys all want to see pictures and videos, and I really will try to be better at putting them up more often. But right now there is something else on my mind.

In three days Eliana is scheduled to have surgery. I'm not going to go into all the details up here but basically she is having abdominal surgery that will involve a 5-10 day hospital stay. This is not unexpected, it is something we have known was coming her whole life. But now that it's actually here, it's much harder. I can't begin to describe how awful it is for a mother to think about her baby going in to surgery. I hate the thought of her being in pain, of her not understanding what is going on and of her having to deal with recovery.

There is another issue at hand that also makes this difficult. Leaving Bracha in the hospital the day Eliana and I came home after their birth was one of the hardest things I've ever done in my life. It kills me that there were a couple of days that, while recovering from a c-section in my fourth-floor walk-up while taking care of one newborn, I didn't even make it to the hospital to visit my other baby. I know what it is like to have one twin at home and the other in the hospital. That makes this both easier, having already been through it, and harder, knowing how awful it is.

At least this time one of us will be with Eli 24/7, instead of having to leave her at night like we did with Bracha when she was in the NICU (they didn't have facilities for parents to stay). Bracha plus whichever one of us isn't at the hospital/at work will be with my parents at their home, so she'll be getting plenty of attention. But I'm worried about them missing each other (because for those of you who asked, they are definitely aware of each other. They play together all the time and seek one another out to play). Being apart will not be easy for them, either.

I look forward to the surgery to be over, for her wounds to be healed, and to finally be able to put this whole thing, that has been hanging over our heads all year, behind us.

Please keep our daughter in your thoughts and/or prayers on Thursday, and we'll give you updates as we can.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

One year!

Bubbie and Zaidy have been visiting from Toronto (and thus the lack of updates, but huge stock of new adorable clothing!). They came for the girls' birthday and Purim. The result: tons of awesome new pictures and videos! So here are a few to whet your appetite. Enjoy!