Thursday, May 30, 2013

Thursday Thesicle

Sometimes Batman insists on making appearances at his dad's softball games.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Countdown: 33 weeks

I'm struggling lately with getting anything of substance written here. I know I need to write about the latest in Clark's kidney mystery and about all the reading the boys have been doing...all the busy boy playing and the baseball obsession...but oddly the most writing inspiration I've had in awhile came from a visit to a handicapped bathroom stall the other day. You don't want to know. But maybe I'll go ahead and write about it soon just for kicks. We'll see.

I had a sonogram last week that Brian and the boys were able to watch. Peapod is checking in at a whopping 5 lbs already! "On the big side," the doctor nicely put it. He thinks the baby will be 8 or 9 lbs!

Here are my week 33 pictures. I wore the same shirt and stood in the same spot for this week's comparison. I think I was bigger last time, though I'm not exactly as sideways in this picture. What do you think?

33 weeks pregnant with the twins
33 weeks pregnant with Peapod

Friday, May 24, 2013

Probing Questions

I wrote about the boys' constant and weird questioning a few months ago here on the blog. I'm back to report that nothing has changed. Brian and I are still under a relentless questions siege on a regular basis. I've been keeping track and I took a few accompanying pictures for your enjoyment.

What if my nipples were chocolate chips?

What would happen if I put my tongue in this hole?

Why is Clark so annoying?

Why are superheroes helpful?

How do you draw throw-up?

Who designed poop?

Uncle A, are you a giant?

Why am I so good at baseball?

How do you make hair?

Why is it Henry's birthday?

Do you like our maternity pants? 

How is Alex a girl and we are boys?

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Thursday Thesicle

One is a ball player, two is a team, three is a dedicated grounds crew.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Countdown: Week 32

Time to compare my week 32 this time to my week 32 last time around.

32 weeks pregnant with the twins
32 weeks pregnant with Peapod
Last week I thought I looked bigger than last time but now I think I look smaller...must be the shirt and the angle. Here's the link to those pictures. Calvin just asked me how many more days until Peapod is born, so we counted. There are 44 days until the scheduled C-section! Woohoo!

Monday, May 13, 2013

My Pregnant Mother's Day

I had a beautiful Mother's Day yesterday. It started off with the best gift a pregnant mother could get. Seriously. Brian told me I would be puzzled when I first opened it and then it would slowly dawn on me and I'd love it. He was precisely right. At first when I uncovered everything on the kitchen table I thought, whaaat? Are we going on a giant picnic? Then I got it. Brilliant.

Perfect gift for a pregnant mom!
We won't have to do hardly any dishes until the baby comes...maybe even for awhile after. Especially with our little kitchen it seems like all I do all day is dishes, which involves being on my feet, obviously, and makes me super tired. Or else I don't do them at all and our kitchen is just gross or Brian does them all when he gets home, which chews up the afternoon. Brian told me to save the pots and pans and he'll do them when he gets home. We'll recycle everything else. Nice.

Ready for action
Next we went to my good friend Missy's son's dedication at their church. By the way, the weather was awesome- high in the high 60s- maybe it reached 70, I'm not sure. There wasn't a cloud in the sky most of the day. After the dedication we went and got lunch and then headed downtown for the Nationals game against the Cubs. The whole way to the stadium the boys were bouncing along, with Clark saying repeatedly, "I'm so excited for the Nats game! I love going to Nats games!" Our seats in left field were in the sun, but it wasn't too hot. Though the Nats lost in the end on a dumb error, we saw five complete innings of their starter no-hitting the Cubs and the Nats had quite a few hits, though they stranded most runners. Teddy the Racing President had his first win of the season, which made the boys' day. Screech the bald eagle mascot found his mom in the crowd and brought her flowers. Some players used pink bats and batting gloves and to honor their mothers. Cute.

After the game the boys got to run the bases-something they've been looking forward to and talking about for weeks. They got nervous when we found out that Brian couldn't run around with them, but one of the girls helping out held their hands and ran around with them. The racing presidents were all on the field too. As much as they love the presidents dearly, they're still intimidated and scared by the sheer size of them, but they made it with only a little initial crying.

On the way back to our parking lot, which is about five or six blocks from the stadium, we splurged and took one of the bike taxis to the lot. The bike driver was super nice and funny and my giant body was thankful not to do that walk. The boys loved it too.

After that we picked up some food for a picnic dinner and drove to my sister and brother-in-law's softball game with the rest of Brian's family. After the game of course the boys ran the bases several times with their cousins. They came home and crashed in a happy heap of Nats gear and softball field dirt.

Lovely day. I am blessed.

The boys with little Henry- their future bases-running pal
On the way to the park- both boys insisted on bringing
gloves to catch home runs.
Good seats!
Clark poised to catch a homer. This happened often, but to no avail.
Happy Mother's Day
Cal being a baseball player with my sunglasses
Me and my boys
Hot dog munchin' 
After running the bases
The Presidents!
On the way back to the car in our bike taxi

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Countdown

Last time I was pregnant pretty much everything was different. For example, I didn't have 4 year-olds to take care of every day. And I was on bedrest from 28-36 weeks. I took pictures of my expanding belly every was a little ridiculous. I realized today that I haven't specifically taken a single picture of my belly this pregnancy. Poor Peapod! So today, at 31 weeks, I took the first picture. Actually, the boys took turns taking pictures because they're obsessed with using my camera. Thus begins the countdown until July 5th.

Here's a little side-by-side comparison to last time:

Pregnant with Cal and Clark four years ago
Pregnant with Peapod today

Pretty sure I'm bigger today than I was four years ago with twins. I'll blame it on the twins stretching out my uterus. At this rate Peapod will come out right around 14 pounds...

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

From the Blastball Journals

When I first heard that the earliest the boys could play T-ball here is age four, I was kind of bummed. I envisioned them getting starting sooner for some reason. (Tiger Mom alert) The T-ball program for four year-olds is called Blastball and after reading the description I was skeptical. Then when I found out the cut-off date for playing in the spring was April 30th and the boys birthday is April 29th, I felt pretty great. They had almost had to wait until the fall to play. Phew. The Blastball commissioner (yes, that's a thing) asked for parent coaches and so I volunteered Brian and myself to coach the boys' team of six boys. The Red Wings.

The Mighty Red Wings
The first practice the boys were super excited...until they found out there is only one base in Blastball. That's right. The batter hits the ball off the tee and runs to first base, which squeaks like a rubber ducky when he steps on it. If the batted ball doesn't cross a line that is straight out in front of home plate about 10 feet, the batter gets to try again. After reaching first base, he returns to his team behind home plate to the whoops and cheers of parents. Meanwhile the team on defense has to stand behind the line and try to stop the ball. Sometimes after kids stop it (or it rolls to a stop) they throw it toward first base where a coach is, but usually it just rattles around on the ground for awhile while the kids dive for it, narrowly missing each other's heads. Oh, and most kids don't use gloves in the field. And certainly not the batting gloves that my boys think they need to use.
On the way to the first practice
Even though the rules sounded lame to me at first, during the first game I realized that this is totally appropriate play for most of these kids. Anything more would be a stretch for many of them. I'd say about half of the kids can't quite hit the ball far enough on the first or second try (and some can't manage to get it past the line at all) and it's pretty common to see a kid or two wandering off in the middle of play-- telling his mom that his pants feel weird or that he wants a snack or a high five or is ready to bat now.

However, as suspected, Cal and Clark are quite the contrast to the meandering,  reluctant ball player. On Friday nights they hang up their jerseys on their closet doors. Saturday morning they wake up and "need privacy" to get dressed in their "locker room" (bedroom). They wanted to wear belts the first day. (They don't have belts) They love it. Even though there are no outs and no runs and no winning, they love being out there decked out in their jerseys and hats with their teammates and often smashing the ball over everyone's heads.

Speaking of heads, they're developing rather big ones, too. At the second game, Clark made a diving catch. He actually dove, caught the ball in his glove, held onto it, and fired it to first base. Not a common Blastball sight. He then raised his hands in the air and loudly declared to everyone, "I didn't know I would make an amazing catch!" He then immediately ran off the field and high-fived me, Gammy, and the other Red Wings parents...and then the River Dogs parents...oops. Their bragging so far hasn't been bad in front of other players, but at home they've both repeatedly told us how good they are at baseball. We're trying to agree with them but also tell them it's not a nice thing to say...which is a confusing concept to them I think.

Game time!
Ready position! Alligator arms!
Cal winds up
Clark in action
After the games a parent brings snacks which usually involves Gatorade that the boys importantly swig down while swaggering around talking about the good game, and their made-up score (which always favors the Red Hawks) and how tired they are from playing so hard. (This often sounds like a postgame player interview.)

We're fortunate in that the other boys on the team are also pretty enthusiastic about baseball, with just one meandering, gum-chewing, adorable exception. The parents are great too, and all eager to be involved. There is supposed to be a parent with each child even at practice and it's not common that we have two parents and two grandparents for one child even at practice. We've already had a little after-practice pizza party at a local restaurant and the opening day Little League parade.

It's all adorable and fun and I'm really glad I have little boys who love baseball. Maybe we can get them into real T-ball in the fall even though they won't be five...hmm. Tiger Mom out.

Bonus: YouTube video of Cal and Clark hitting

Sunday, May 5, 2013

4 Year-Olds' Sports Party

Since the boys are obsessed with sports, as I've written about here, we decided to have a sports birthday party for them. Last year it was astronauts and space robots they were obsessed with, but that phase is over and now every day is a sports day.

We borrowed sports equipment from several different friends, and set up Gammy and Poppy's yard and driveway with a baseball field, soccer field, basketball court, golf course, football field, and hockey rink. I asked everyone to wear jerseys for the occasion. We set up a popcorn machine and smoothie station on the deck, grilled hot dogs and hamburgers, and also had the sand table out which is always a big hit with the kids.

The past few years we've also had their birthday parties at Gammy and Poppy's house in their nice backyard and we had two beautiful days for the parties. Not so this year. About 45 minutes to an hour into the party it started raining. So we had somewhere around 60 people (half of them little people) all over in the house, with some brave ones still playing outside for awhile. It was disappointing, but obviously we knew the risk of planning such a party and we had to get over it.

I made baseball and football cupcakes for dessert. The boys and I had partially made two pinatas but I ran out of steam and never got them painted. That turned out fine actually, because doing a pinata in the house would have been a disaster, as would have been a soggy pinata outside. I got foam pennants and stickers for the kids to each decorate a pennant to take home. The favor bags were wrapped up like peanuts at a ball game.

Here are some pictures.
The boys helping put all the names on the pennants a few days before

My baseball and football cupcakes
Goodie bags wrapped like hot peanuts
Pennants to decorate
Just a ball player hydratin' 
Gammy the smoothie queen/popcorn machine runner
Brian decorated by hanging jerseys on the fences

Four year-old birthday ball players
More athlete brothers
Henry's first pennant
So THAT's where all the lady bug stickers went...
Alex was so excited to give the boys their gift...

It's more twin brother athletes! (upside-down)
My Baby Alex is growing up!
Santiago preferred to decorate the back of his, so...
Upside down and hidden Oliver

Clark photo-bombs Sonja's delightful pennant picture.
Pretty Rebecca

Some sports snuggling with Aunt Julie
That's an intense hockey player with Uncle A
Another set of helmets to add to the collection...
Capitals bobbleheads and other Caps gear from Gammy and Poppy
They'll even get to ice skate at the Caps practice facility!
From what I've heard, even though much of the party ended up being inside,
the kids still had enough fun to be completely wiped out.

We've spent the last week enjoying all kinds of new toys from our kind friends and family. Here is some documentation of the fun the boys have had with their new things.

Thanks to Grandma, Papa, Great Grandma, and Cowboy Grandpa,
these boys have scooters, helmets, pads, and ferocity. 
They LOVE their umbrellas from Alex! We had three rainy days to try them out.
Radio-controlled cars from cousins have been motoring
all over the house. Soon we'll try them out in water, too!
Golf gear and an inside putting hole have been a big hit.
A soccer ball to decorate, awesome place-mat doodle pads, art supplies...
Today they got to try out the golf shirts and hats.
Yep, they work
They tried out the scooters and new caped superhero shirts.
Alex tended to Clark's boo-boo. Shouldn't have taken the helmet off...
The radio control also works as a tool for knee surgery on RG3.
We are so blessed by our family and friends who helped make the party fun and the birthday special for the boys. Thank you. They are constantly telling everyone that they are now four years old. Brian and I cannot believe it! These years are going so quickly.
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