Tuesday, March 26, 2013

First Trip To Starbucks For The Littles, Consignment and Stains

Saturday night while I was at shopping at Target, another mom and I started talking. She told me about a consignment sale that was in town, set up at a hotel not too far from our house. I had heard of them before, but this time, I thought I would check it out.. What could it hurt, right?

I called the hotel to see what time it was going to start, they told me 9 am (even though it was on a Sunday). L woke up early Sunday, I called the hotel again to double check the time (once again they said 9). I asked L if she wanted to go for a treat with me while Daddy and M slept a bit more. We got ready, left a note and headed to Starbucks. 

She was so excited! At that point, she had only ever been through the drive thru and she has only had cake pops and scones from there. Now she was on her way to get a cocoa (kids hot chocolate ... we don't call it hot chocolate because she will tell me she doesn't want something hot because it will burn her).

Words could not explain her excitement when she got her "cocoa" and it was in the same kind of cup as mine. Everyone that walked by us, she would look at them and say, "I'm drinking coffee!" She was so excited ... and you could tell, she felt so BIG!!

I let her choose a pastry (she didn't eat any of it)... and as our trip came to a close, I received a call from Daddy (I could hear M screaming in the background). M was so upset that she woke up and Mommy wasn't there. I felt bad and immediately said we could come back home to pick them up! It was quite impressive (with a little instruction) Daddy was able to get both of them ready by the time we got back home.

Off we went to the consignment sale. We walked in at 9:12, it wasn't open and didn't open until noon. What? I called twice! What were we going to do now?

Back to Starbucks we went! For M's first Starbucks experience and L's second within an hour and a half! Honestly, this was Daddy's first time sitting in Starbucks as well. It was quite an enjoyable morning. They chose two more pastries (and didn't eat those either) ... Cocoa was a hit, pastries not so much, and they both had cocoa stains down the front of their shirts (more on this later)! A quick trip to visit their Mamaw then we were off once again to the consignment sale.

Most things were half off (because it was the last day). I got several pairs of Gymboree shorts for L, 2 cute dresses for M a few shirts, some board puzzles and believe it or not, a big girl bike with training wheels. The bike was not part of the plan, but it was $20.00 and in great shape. We couldn't pass this up!

As I am writing this, it is now Tuesday afternoon and L learned how to ride her new bike this morning (in the house, it's snowing outside). She kissed her tricycle then asked me to put it away!

Now back to the stains. Immediately after getting home from the consignment sale I started a load of laundry. Of course I put their cocoa stained shirts in there, but the wash didn't take the stains out! While they were still wet, I used my old faithful (this takes ANY stain out)! I don't know what they put in it, but it's the Target brand hand soap (that we put in our soap dispensers in our bathroom). This stuff is amazing and with a little bit of scrubbing, has taken pretty much EVERY stain I've came across out of anything! If you haven't tried this, you definitely should!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Favorite Part of The Day...

I was reminded of this while reading another blog post one night last week.... While I was still pregnant a friend told me every night before bed to ask my little ones their favorite part and their least favorite part of the day. That this would open many doors to many conversations (and well, it was fun). It's popped into my mind from time to time, but I felt the girls were too young to "get it". Last week while I was reading another blog, they mentioned when they talked about their high/low of the day. After reading this, I knew this was the perfect time.

I'm so thankful for reading that and starting it when I did. L loves it! She brings it up many times a day. Early in the day she'll ask, "Mommy, what's your favorite part of the day so far?" I love that she likes this so much. The best part is when M is thinking of her reply, she makes the best facial expressions! (I really need to record this one day) 

I've worded it many different ways and the least confusing for them is favorite and least favorite part of the day. Although the last 2-3 days I can tell by M's responses that she is a little confused by the least favorite part of the day. Yesterday we had a few moments of clarification. So now I'll ask her what her least favorite part is, before she has a chance to answer, I'll remind her that her least favorite part is the part that she DID NOT LIKE from the day. I know she understands I'm asking her what part she didn't like. Because yesterday she told me the part about the geese. She tells me often that she doesn't like geese (every since the day the goose almost attacked us at the zoo). Today she "GOT IT!" 

I typically ask L first (well unless she beats me to it). She'll tell me her favorite and least favorite then SHE will ask M what her favorite part is. After we hear what M's favorite part is, I'll ask her in the way (the new way) she understands to tell us her least favorite... Then one or both of them will ask me mine.

Tonight was great. They were both snuggling with me right before we started doing this. M had just gotten off of my lap when I asked L. Her reply of her favorite part was "sitting there right then snuggling me" her least favorite was her tantrum at the Y. M's was playing with the balls in the pool and her least favorite was when L was crying. I love them and I love doing this with them everyday!!!

Computer time...

Computer time is something I have recently started doing with both girls. At this point, M loses interest  pretty quickly. Recently we started getting on starfall.com and both girls love it; L more so than M. I now know the types of activities on there that keep M's attention. 

Yesterday we registered for 13 months on abcmouse.com and I'm so glad we did it. L loves it and gets so excited to sit down for computer time (which we sit down and do together)! Tonight I was able to sit down and explore the website a bit more in depth. Instead of following the lesson plan they make up, I am able to make my own for M. While she is at the age she is, I think this is great to be able to do to entice her and get her and keep her interested. So, that's what I did for her. I'm excited to see how it goes with her tomorrow. L on the other hand is following her lesson plan and very interested in it all!!! 

I am very excited about this; As we are only a day into it. I hope to sit down everyday for a little bit of computer time (in addition to the other things we are doing) and see there this takes!!

I am interested if anyone else has used this website and any tips you may have! Any other computer based programs that you have used/liked/disliked. Not that I want to do everything on the computer. (This is a small part that I am incorporating into our day). I would love your input on this! 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

We had a few stressful hours today...

Yesterday we had our tea party with Daddy then decided to head to the zoo. While we were there, L told me she had a sore in her mouth that really hurt. I could see it. It looked like she bit the inside of her cheek (and I know that hurts). She wasn't herself and even told me she didn't feel good. I asked what was bothering her she said her tummy and her cheek. She took a bit of a nap in the stroller (and the car once we left). We did a little bit of shopping (she seemed fine) every now and again she would comment on her mouth. We played outside for awhile as Daddy grilled out for dinner. Everyone seemed okay. We had dinner and everyone went to sleep pretty quickly. 

Shortly after falling asleep L started talking in her sleep (this hasn't ever happened) then she got the chills. Both signs of something bad to come. L woke up around 9:30 running a fever. A fever is bad in any event, but especially bad because we were supposed to go to her second cousins 2nd birthday party the following afternoon. What was I going to do??? I decided not to worry about it and see how the morning played out. 

L woke up this morning running a fever and I knew I was going to have to make the phone call that we couldn't go to the party. I gave L some ibuprofen and kept an eye on her. She was playing fine and acting pretty normal. I had no idea what was causing the fever! As the morning went on, I remembered my sister saying there were going to be a total of 4 kids at the party. The birthday girl, my 2 girls and one other kid (we didn't know who it was); after remembering this, I thought we HAD to go! If we didn't go, there wouldn't be anyone there for the Birthday Girl! My husband agreed. I was trying to get in touch with my sister to let her know what was going on. My sister called at 11 (the party was at 1:30), she started to tell me she was throwing up the night before, she felt dizzy, had an intense headache and her ears felt like they were on fire. She was so upset that she was going to miss her granddaughter's birthday party. I didn't have the heart to tell her we weren't going either, since the girls were playing good and acting okay, that's when I decided we were for sure going. 

The other thing that was in the back of my mind that made me decide to go, was my brother in law. He is handicapped and needs help getting in and out of the house/and his truck/and his wheelchair out of his truck. I knew if my sister wasn't going, that he wasn't going to be able to go either and it was silly for both of them to miss it! I told them I would stop by, pick him up and I would take care of him. That I could handle my girls and help him too. 

It was 65 degrees yesterday and today 32 degrees.... As I went outside to start my car and let it warm up, it was sleeting. For something "FUN" to do, if the weather was like this, we would normally postpone whatever we were doing! There's no reason to get everyone out in bad weather if it can be avoided! I called my husband to get his opinion. I didn't want to go! I didn't want to get the girls out in the weather. My sister was sick and she was helping my brother in law get ready; I hated to call again and say we weren't coming but if more bad weather was coming, I wasn't going to risk it! My husband looked at the weather system and we decided I would go ahead and go. If things got bad, we were going to be near my sisters house we could stay the night there (but stay away from her with her being sick)... 

My girls are so good. I told them the weather wasn't good and I needed them to be quiet for me so I could concentrate. I was a little nervous about crossing the bridge, but it was alright. The drive wasn't horrible, but I everyone was still driving a bit slower than normal. Once we pulled into their driveway, L said, "Mommy, I talked a couple of times. I just couldn't help it. But I was quiet most of the time!" She's so funny! 

The drive from their house to Chuck E. Cheese was a bit slushy and slick. Once inside, the weather was all forgotten and everyone had a great time!! I'm really glad we were there for the birthday girl. The 4th little one was suppose to be there was 3 months old. She wouldn't have had anyone to play with. I'm sure she wouldn't still had fun... but still. The rest of the day was so much better. I just felt bad for my sister missing out, I know she was so sad about it. The girls had a great time, the birthday girl had a great time. The weather got a little better while we were there. It warmed up to 38 and it was just raining. As I was putting the girls jackets on them when it was time to leave, I noticed L felt warm. The girls took a back as soon as we got home. They were tired. L did't have a fever, I was surprised because she felt so warm! We ate dinner, brushed our teeth and laid down. M was tired from playing. I could see it in L's eyes that she didn't feel good one again... I checked again and her temperature was up once again. 100.8 Not horrible, but still a fever. 

My girls blew through 80 tokens in a few hours, ate good, danced, played games, and had a great time. A bad decision for going maybe. But it meant a lot to my sister and my brother in law that I helped him out and made it possible for him to go.  A bad decision and a good deed. 

Friday, March 15, 2013

Baking, Reminising About Our First Tea Party, Preparing for our Second, and Swimming

Waking up this morning I decided we would bake cookies for our swimming play date this afternoon. There's something magical for my girls about pouring a few random ingredients into a bowl; Then seeing something totally different come out of the oven as they hear the timer go off and they yell in unison, "DONE!"

The cookies didn't take long to bake and as they cooled on the island, we sat at the computer sounding out words on www.starfall.com. We recently discovered this website and they love it! Of course L is a little older; it holds her attention quite a bit longer than M's. M just think she's getting away with something "playing with the computer mouse. I do think for the time that it has M's attention, that she IS getting a little bit of something out of it! She repeats, participates and dances with the music.

We made the decision to have a surprise tea party with Daddy tomorrow morning, SO we prepared a few things for that. My mom gave the girls their own special tea sets for each of their birthdays. We carefully selected these tea sets specific to each one of the girls. I wanted them to get something that suited them both in their own way! I wanted them to have something that would last, so they could keep them forever and possibly have tea parties with their kids (if they decide to have them). The kicker when I suggested this to my mom. I wanted to have 4 place settings and I wanted a special carrier to be able to take them out and put them away (that's part of the fun, right?). This is something I've thought about for quite sometime! My mom came through, we picked out one with stripes and polka dots for L and bunnies for M. The sets are wonderful! She bought 4 total ... 2 for each of them (so they each had 4 place settings). I wanted them to have memories of their own special tea parties! 

We had a tea party the day after L's birthday party with her set. February 18, 2013 I was so emotional getting things ready for that tea party, OUR FIRST REAL TEA PARTY! The whole time I was getting this party together, it was pretty magical! As I was taking pictures and getting everything ready have it in their room (which that morning, they decided was now Pixie Hollow!) We had made special banana bread to have with our tea (we really drank milk). I wanted to dress everyone up for our tea party, L said no, that she wanted everyone to wear t-shirts and big girl panties (I kept my pants on). M pointed out that the small cups were like what Willy Wonka (the original movie) drank out of. L agreed and asked if we could eat the cups, JUST LIKE Willy Wonka did. That was a big negative! No one was attempting to eat the cups! Tiny cups, Tiny hands, Tiny forks ... they loved the tiny forks! My heart exploded many, MANY times during our party! As I said, I had pictured my girls and I having special tea parties for quite sometime ... and it was finally happening. M is VERY VERY excited about surprising Daddy with a tea party in the morning with HER tea set!!

We left for the pool, had a great time swimming as usual. We met their Mamaw and cousin there. Her cousin is 6 months younger than M. It was their cousins very first time in a pool. They had a lot of fun and were exhausted when we left (as usual after going swimming)!

As I was reading another blog last night, it reminded me of some advice I was given while I was still pregnant. I was told several things to make sure I did with my little ones, and one of the things was to talk and at the end of the day to ask them their favorite and least favorite part of their day. We did this on the way home. M said her favorite part of the day was swimming and her least favorite part was being in the locker rooms. L said her favorite part was baking cookies and swimming and she fell asleep while trying to thing of her least favorite part (we were talking on the way home from swimming). 

Waking them up to go in the house (especially when they are this tired and it's this late in the day/early evening) is never fun. So instead of taking them straight in, we played outside for quite sometime waiting for Daddy to get home from work. It was beautiful outside at this point, 65 degrees. We played a bit of soccer, ran around for a bit, got a little dirty and called it a night. 

There's nothing more cute than hearing one of them say the word appreciate, them using it appropriately, and saying they appreciate something one did for the other or something I did for them. L and myself say it often. Today was the first time I heard M say it ... in her sweet little voice. While we were outside,  L collected some acorns. M asked me to get her some. I suggested for her to ask L to show her where she got them from. L did. M was so excited to show me that L collected some for her. I asked if she thanked her, M went over to hug L and she said, "Thank you for my acorns L, I pre-ciate it!" I LOVE THEM!!! 

Bath time, dinner time, brushing teeth time, and falling asleep snuggled up in Mommy's arms singing our night time song. I lay with them, one snuggled on each side of me. I rub M's face and L likes my arm around her and she holds my hand. 

We had a perfect day. 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Our Potty Training Journey ...

I'll preface this by saying I'm so glad both of my girls and I are finished with this journey!!

I was sitting, watching L's soccer practice while listening to this mom tell about 4 others "How To Potty Train" ... then I thought about my girls and the difference between the two of them. I could hear her saying (as she hit her fist to her palm to drive this point through) "You have to sit them on the potty every 30 minutes." I have to admit, I tried this and I thought it was ridiculous! If you do this EVERY 30 MINUTES and they sit on the potty for awhile, then they are ALWAYS sitting on the potty! If you attempt to sit them down every 30 minutes and start timing from when they get off the potty, then you will miss when they have to go. This is a vicious, stressful cycle! That's what I thought about it anyway! BUT I SUPPOSE IT WORKS FOR SOME PEOPLE!

All kids are different and all moms have patience and tolerance for different things! I think potty training is just as personal for people as their individual parenting styles! There's no right way, there's no wrong way! You just have to find the best way that works for you and your little one! Most certainly what worked for L was not the same as what worked for M!! 

As I sat down to write this, I began typing about then very beginning, when L initially showed interest in using the potty. This was between 16-17 months old (she's 3 now!). I typed 3 lines and decided that was too far to go back. That was the summer before last; So I'll just start with last summer. Between those 2 summers, her interest would peak and valley. But if she ever wanted to use the potty, it was certainly available for her! Then this past summer, I WAS READY TO DO THIS!  I did sticker charts, I did small prizes, we would even bake muffing for several hours with no accidents (we made a lot of muffins, didn't always eat all of them but making them was quite the treat). Then once we got pretty good, I even took her to the pet store to buy fish for our aquarium for a few days with no accidents. Multiple trips and thirty dollars in one week for fish, it was fun for her and she wanted to do it but I couldn't do that every week .. and our tank was going to get crowded! (this was a fun week though). 

Eventually we did the run around the house bare bottom, which worked great for pee!! Although if I put panties on her she would still have accidents and when it came to poop, she would always ask for me to put a diaper on her!! That's the only time she would ask for me to put a diaper on her. I started promising her the world for her to poop in the potty. NOTHING. Then I promised Chuck E. Cheese, a trip to the park, and pink cupcakes all for poop in the potty! She did this at 5:30 one night. We're NEVER just going out that late (unless we are already out). But I made good on all of my promises!! I was so happy ... THEN she didn't do it again for 4 days. I had to give her a diaper when she asked for it. I was afraid of her getting impacted!! 

Then I remembered a dvd that was passed onto me while I was still pregnant. Potty Power. Within the hour after her first time watching it, she voluntarily pooped in the potty and never turned back. M never had this issue with pooping in the potty (thank goodness)!! They love this dvd! The songs are great and even though they are now potty trained, they still ask to watch this dvd sometimes!

L had accidents here and there and one morning early October 2012 we woke up and I asked her, "Do you want to wear big girl panties or a diaper today?" She smiled so big, said panties and this was the end of it! She had 2 accidents that week and the rest was history for her! After 2 weeks of no accidents she was able to pick out some pretty panties of her choice. She chose Minnie Mouse and she thought she was so big after that!! Officially potty trained  at 32 months! I was happy. 

M couldn't run around bare bottom because she would just pee anywhere! This may sound bad, but it was like having a puppy! If I put panties on her, she would have an accident EVERY TIME! Run around naked, pee on the floor within 15 minutes! But she would also take her own diaper off and just pee (anywhere) as well. She wanted to wear panties so bad and she wanted some Tinkerbell panties too; I didn't know what to do with her. She got to where when we were out and L would have to go potty, she would tell me after we would come back that she had to go too. It was all so silly. She knew what she was doing, she knew when she needed to go. She was just messing with me. (I have no idea why)

The first day of February this year we woke up one morning and I asked her, "Do you want to wear big girl panties or a diaper today?" Of course she said big girl panties! She had 3 accidents that week... a few days into this with her we had tickets for the circus. We went there, out to eat for lunch, then to the park and NO ACCIDENTS, we took her that day to pick out her Tinkerbell panties and no more accidents for her! Potty Trained at 26 months... Words couldn't explain how happy I was!! 

Last week M did have 2 accidents. One was when we got home from swimming, she was so tired and come to find out, she was getting sick. Then the following morning she had one more. Some people suggested possible regression. (I had no idea what to do with that). But luckily, THIS never happened again!

Potty training is so different for everyone! This is what worked for us!

The Change with Google Reader

<a href="http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/5100193/?claim=5xm85p6u9qn">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

(The code above is something I had to paste into a new blog post to link my blog to that site. Please disregard)

I'm new to sharing my blog with the world. From what I understand, the change with Google Reader, the "Follow My Blog with Google Friend Connect"  as also going away. With this, I added the option to follow my blog via email as well as following with Bloglovin. I honestly don't know if there is more that I need to, or should do. Feel free to leave a comment with any other suggestions in regards to this.

I have enjoyed this new blogging adventure and want to continue to share my thoughts and our adventures with all of you!! 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Left Handed or Right Handed??

It's been so interesting watching our girls over the last year and a half (if not longer) ... from the beginning as they would scribble on their Magna Doodles or with chunky crayons on construction paper. Watching their hands as I attempted to peak their interest in writing letters or drawing shapes; I would notice which hand they would hold their pens, pencils and crayons. I remember a period when L would randomly switch her writing utensil from one hand to another trying to figure it out. 

I never interrupted this process of letting her figure out for herself which hand her pencil "felt right in." Once this became clear to me that she was going to be left handed, this is when I began to teach her how to hold her pencil/pen/marker/crayon properly. Every now and again she will try to switch (I do think she does this, because when I show how to write or draw something, I show her with my right hand). I'll gently remind her to switch hands, that she writes with her left hand. 

Today I realized that over the last 2 months I have been interrupting this process with M. When we sit down to do a craft or activity M will sometimes hold her pencil in her left hand. I've been correcting her, remember, you write with your right hand... WHAT WAS I THINKING? Well, I was thinking she holding her pencil and trying to write with her left hand just because L was. I've been interrupting her process of figuring this out on her own! Her figuring out which hand her pencil "felt right in." 

This afternoon I was taking a break, sitting on the couch watching the girls play. M was drawing faces and proudly showing me her work. L wasn't actually drawing faces or any pictures at this 26 months. Truthfully, it's just been within the last month that L has been drawing pictures. Real distinguishable pictures! M is starting this process very early in comparison. I believe this is because she see's L doing it and is really trying on her own.  I sit down (often) and draw with them too! 

But today as I was watching M draw, I noticed she would draw a face or two with one hand, switch hands then draw a few more faces. This triggered my mind, this is what made me remember L going through this process. It was most likely around this same time last year; As I've known she's absolutely left handed for several months now. I've been interrupting her process!! 

Some things you read about this says this could be obvious as early as 6-9 months. Most of the time, you can tell around 2-3 years old. But some little ones use both hands equally until they are around 5. I'm so glad I realized sooner rather than later what I was doing and that I need to stop!!! I won't interrupt this any longer until it's noticably obvious that she is right or left handed!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Is It Her Age? Or Is It Just Her??

There are so many stages of L's 3 years that I feel like I have said, "This is my favorite time!" or "This is the best time!" But those stages were the best for many different reasons. 

When we first brought her home ... THAT WAS THE BEST
Those smiles those newborns smile when they are sleeping ... THOSE WERE PRETTY GREAT! I have so many video clips of her sleeping "just to catch those smiles!"
Watching her start to become mobile and knowing everything was going to be so different once she could get around on her own, and the anticipation on that happening. THAT WAS PRETTY GREAT! She never really crawled, she scooted and commando crawled. 
When she started to laugh and giggle ... THAT WAS THE BEST!! For the longest time, I was the only one that could make her laugh!
Her sitting up for the first time ... Pretty cool!
Letting her discover new foods and textures. THAT WAS PRETTY AWESOME!
Hearing her say Mama for the first time!! MAKING MY HEART EXPLODE THE BEST!!
Each new word... EACH ONE WAS PRETTY GREAT!!
When she learned to pull herself up to standing and furniture walk ... it was a whole new world for her .. and THAT WAS THE BEST! She was able to discover so many things and this was amazing to watch her do this (kind of on her own).
When she discovered she could stand on her own without holding onto anything ... THAT WAS THE BEST! MY BIG GIRL!
When she took her first steps!! ABSOLUTELY THE BEST!!!
When she learned she could dance! THAT WAS THE BEST! 
Hearing her say I Love You for the first time ... I couldn't hear it enough ... THAT WAS THE BEST!
Seeing her genuinely love and want to take care of her little sister ... THAT WAS THE BEST!

There are so many more things I could add to this list!! But the way she is right now, every single day. I don't know if it is the age she is at or if it's just her. I like to think it's just her. She has blossomed into the most thoughtful, beautiful, caring, kind-hearted little girl! 

Last night while we were getting ready for bed, M was crying, she said, "I don't want her to cry. Can I sing a song for her?" She did, she made up the best song and it totally came from how she felt because she sang it over and over (I videoed it). The words pretty much the same:

I love you M. Don't cry M.
I appreciate it M.
I love you don't cry.
Let me hold you. Mommy's gonna hold you in a minute
I love you. Mommy's gonna hold you in a minute.
I love you M, don't cry, I love you!

She wants to help everyone, do the things they need to do or fix boo boos. She'll cheer someone on when they do something good! She likes to help out in situations where she can talk about doing the right thing and wanting to do the right thing and wanting to be a nice girl! She likes to pretend she's writing and in her scribbles, she always likes to read what she wrote and it's almost always something sweet to me. About her love for all of us and how sweet we  are to her, The first time I heard her (as she put her hand on her heart and said) "My heart is beautiful and I love you more than I can tell you for always." I always tell her I love her more than all the stars in the sky or that I love her more than she'll ever know... and she's trying to say something of the same sort. It always comes out, "I love you more than I can tell you for always" ... words I'll love to hear forever! As we lay down to sleep at night, she'll be silent and I'll think she's sleeping and she'll whisper that she loves me, or that she had fun that day, or that she's lucky I'm her Mommy. I always tell her how lucky I am to be her's and M's Mommy!

She makes my heart melt, she makes my heart explode so many times everyday! I love her! 

She's full of love, she knows how much she's loved ... All of this sweetness that is just so genuine THIS IS THE BEST!!!!!

Monday, March 11, 2013

We Should Have Stayed Home!

It was Wednesday when M started to develop a cough. Thursday L wanted to nap, my girls rarely nap! Friday L napped for a little more than 2 hours. Lots of coughing Friday night! Saturday we spent the day at my sister and brother in law's house. I was treating their cough, they played well AND had a lot of fun. Saturday night M threw up from all of the coughing and was crazy hot. She had a fever!! Sunday morning both girls woke up in good moods, playing and everything. It was going to be 70 degrees on Sunday. I wanted to get them out; as the rest of the week was going to be cold and raining!

They seemed okay. I told Daddy (who was at work) that I may be crazy to take them, but we were going to head out to the zoo for a little bit! I didn't tell the girls where we were going and they had a lot of fun with the anticipation and trying to figure it out on their own. Once we were about 5 minutes from there, L knew! They were screaming happy screams in the car once the surprise was out, "We were going to the zoo." They were happy and they were acting fine. I did bring our thermometer and the ibuprofen... I felt like I was making a bad decision taking them. We should have stayed home and gotten rest!! ( I know, I keep saying this!)

We went in and they were so excited! Excited because it had been about a month since we had been there (maybe a little longer), excited because I brought our wagon instead of the stroller. They normally walk at the  zoo. But sometimes they get tired and want to ride. They sit to eat their snacks, and we take a lot of stuff!! M was pulling the wagon WHEN IT HAPPENED ... we were getting close to the giraffes. M was pulling the wagon and she was walking between L and myself and I saw it coming as I started to hear L scream the most awful blood curdling screams. I heard 3 other people scream as I jumped over the wagon to get her. A goose had been sitting on the fence by the giraffes AND WAS FLYING STRAIGHT TOWARD HER. Honking it scary honk as it was coming near her. She was scared and honestly I was too. I just knew it was going to get her! I knew we were about to end up at the hospital. I didn't have a lot of time to think as I leaped over our wagon. There wasn't time to move her. I got next to her and bent myself over her body (if that makes sense) and right as I did, it flew straight into me and kept right on going. As it hit me, it jerked my head a little, knocked my glasses off of my head and it's feet (as it went by) got tangled in my hair pulling some of my hair out of my ponytail. In the blink of an eye it was over. It was gone! All I could hear were girls crying. For a minute it seemed like we were the only ones there as I sat straight to the ground, in the middle of everything and pulled both of my screaming girls onto my lap. Close to me. Safe in my arms telling them everything was okay and that I wasn't going to let that goose get them. 

I was talking in such a calm soothing voice as best as I could and I was holding back the tears! As I was telling them I wasn't going to let the goose get them, in my head, I just knew it was about to. When those things walk around, they are as tall as my girls are.  I think it really would've hurt her. I don't think I'll ever forget that scream of L's that I honestly HOPE I NEVER HEAR AGAIN! Total fear!

People just stood and watched as I soothed my girls. No one came over to see if we were okay. Only one woman made a comment after we had collected ourselves and I was giving my girls a snack to try to move on with our day. As she walked by, she said, "I bet you wish you have a video of that." Honestly, only to show my husband! But other than that, really I don't! I can hear her screams in my mind and they were awful ... and I certainly didn't want either of them to see it again. In my nicest sarcastic voice I thanked her for asking if we were okay. As we made our way to the elephants a few geese flew in the sky, honking as they do and both girls began to get a little anxious. I assured them that they were fine and the geese were way up in the air (as I pointed to them). We decided to stay and carry on. For the next 20 minutes or so, M said over and over, "I don't like birds!" In my mind, I knew we shouldn't have came!!

They were having fun. No one would've ever guessed they were sick. They had their normal appetites (which have been coming and going, letting me know they were getting sick). Now just to defend myself a bit. Walking around the zoo, we're outside not really interacting with others, it's not like I took them to Chuck E Cheese where they would be directly touching things other kids would touch making others sick. If their nose runs, I'm right on it. Just sayin' ...

A little bit of time went by. They had been playing and laughing We made it half way through the zoo and M wanted me to hold her, she was hot! I took her temperature and she had a fever. She needed some ibuprofen, I gave it to her, it was time to leave. We walked up the big hill (to cut though to leave). It is an actual paved path, and about 50 feet to the left were 2 geese in the grass. I walked on the side of the geese, telling them once again that I wouldn't let it get them (as I hoped they didn't come near us)! M was better as she walked and held my hand... I was go glad we were leaving. 

Both of the girls fell asleep before we left the parking lot, I felt horrible that I took them out; feeling like the worst mom of the year as I drove home! I knew it was going to be ugly when I woke them up to take them inside the house. It was nearing 5:00, they were tired, not feeling good, just wanting to either sleep or for me to hold them as I would take them out of the car. Daddy was working an odd shift that day AND they asked him to work late. So I was going to have to do baths and make dinner (normally Daddy makes dinner, I am very lucky!). 

The time between waking them from the car and laying down for bed wasn't pretty! L talked about the goose while in the tub. Saying it wasn't funny, it wasn't fun, and she's so cute. She's 3 and she said, "I appreciate you not letting the bird get me Mommy". I love her!! She talked about it at dinner. (We do things a little backwards than most I think with the bath before dinner, but that's what works for us!) She had a hard time falling asleep. I laid with her for 2 hours! She held onto me like she never had before! 

Early this morning (4 am ish) she yelled out in her sleep, "No mommy don't let it" She didn't finish what she was saying as I snuggled her even closer than she already was (at this moment so grateful that we co-sleep)! While I was making breakfast , there was a robin on our walkway right outside our window. I always point out the animals whenever I see them. They typically like to watch the birds and squirrels in the front yard! As I pointed it out, M responded with here normal, "where Mommy" and when she saw it, she started telling me over and over again that she doesn't like birds! We talked about it and let it be. 

They are now sleeping, they don't feel good and needed a rest! My girls that don't nap! But I'm glad I was able to write this before too much time passed...

Have you and your little ones ever had any close calls with animals? What happened?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Writing ABC's

L has been very interested in writing and trying to write her letters. We have a very cool dry erase tablet where she can trace her letters. We do different activities that helps with this too. I get a lot of ideas from Pinterest. She loves to try, she concentrates so hard and gets so excited when something clicks and she "gets" whatever it is that she's trying to do! When we are about to do a "sit down activity," I'll have a few ideas in mind and I'll ask her if she wants to do a craft, do something with letters or paint. She'll choose and we get started. She can trace all of her letters really well. Upper case and lower case. But for her to try to write the letters herself on lined paper, she gets frustrated at times. There are some letters that she writes well  ( on her own), but for the most part, "trying to make letters on lined paper without tracing" can frustrate her. This isn't something we are trying often right now (because of this). I think for her age, she is doing really well, so we do what's fun and we do what she likes pertaining to this. 

Today we got the Aqua Doodle mat out. The girls love drawing and writing on this. I don't really know why, but we haven't gotten this out in awhile. L has recently discovered her new found love for drawing so we drew for awhile, lots of characters from Monsters, Inc!! I wrote her name out and she started writing letters. ON HER OWN WITHOUT TRACING THEM. Other than an occasional letter here and there, I've never seen her do this. She was asking me to write certain words then she would re write what I wrote underneath them. I was truly amazed! Then the one letter that she's always had troubles writing ... the letter B. She wrote it perfectly, over and over and would get excited for each one! I couldn't help it, I was taking videos of her, she was so proud of herself and I was proud too!! 

My baby is growing up!! It unbelievably amazing to watch this transformation happen right before my eyes!!

Are The Terrible Two's A Real Thing??

It's not fair to compare the girls and say one went through this and the other one didn't (although that's how I was thinking earlier today). But as I sit here thinking about what I really want to say, I started to think about how "at this age" they both have had different circumstances. M is 26 months old right now and will do just about anything she can to antagonize L; When L was 26 months old, M was only 16 months old new to walking around and barely talking. L didn't have much to complain about to have to or want to do anything to M. 

Oh how things are different at this stage. M is 26 months old and L is 36 months old. M wants everything L has, M wants to do everything L is doing at the same time she is doing it. We've had some difficult times lately. M will cry and cry because she wants a toy that L is playing with and it won't take to long until L will just hand it to her. L is so kind and she doesn't want M to cry. I'm sure part of her doesn't want M to be sad, and part of her just doesn't want to hear it (honestly)! I just think M thinks L is cool and wants to do and have what she does!!

L is very interested in reading what she writes (out loud), reading a book, or simply telling you something (that she made up), sometimes it's to me, sometimes it's to M, but if she asks either or both of us to listen, M will do anything she can to be loud. It's horrible! I feel really bad, yesterday it was so bad that L started to cry because M wouldn't let her read what she wrote for me. I had to put M in her room and have a few minutes for L to tell me what she wanted to tell me! THIS IS SOMETHING WE ARE WORKING ON!! I know this is a phase, but M needs to learn that THIS NOT OKAY!! 

Earlier today M said she had to go to the bathroom, I followed her in there and she stopped, stood in the middle of the bathroom, looked at me and started to pee. I asked her why she did that, and her reply was, "I wanted to." What the heck? That's not okay!

M went through a biting phase awhile back and I thought we were past that. But earlier tonight, she bit L on her back. She went straight to her room. I talked to her (sternly) and left her to sit on her bed. After some time went by, I went back in to talk to her again and when she told me that she didn't want to apologize to L, I left her in there longer. More time passed and L came in there with me, she was so sweet and so serious. She looked at M and said, "You bit me and it hurt me. Biting is a bad decision and I won't bite you. I want to be a nice girl. If you kiss my back then it's okay". Basically she was saying if you kiss my boo boo then I forgive you. M continued to refuse to apologize and L walked out of the room while M sat there crying. Then L walked right back in and said to me, "I'm leaving because I don't want to hear her crying". Soon after, M apologized, kissed her boo boo and gave L a hug. 

More antics happened in the bath tub tonight. But I think I am getting the point across. BUT I feel bad as I re-read through this because M is really not a "bad" kid. She's really good most of the time. SHE'S JUST YOUNG AND SHE'S LEARNING!! They play really good together pretty much all of the time, but then it's like a switch! When she gets in one of these moods, it's just all down hill. I'll have to start to pay attention to see if there are any triggers. Like being sleepy or something. All of the things today that were going on were later in the day and that may have been the case. But I need to reel it in on these behaviors!! But if I can pay attention and see if there are any triggers, then I can anticipate the behavior and this will help with correcting them!

Despite all of this, it may sound rough having two so close but I wouldn't change things and have them any other way. I bet the two of them would totally agree! Already, they don't know what to do without each other. If one is sleeping, then the other one wants to wake them up, if one is in one room, then other one isn't far behind. It's fun to watch ... 98% of the time and I referee the other part of it... :)

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Play-Doh vs Moon Dough

Before I write this, I just want to say that I have no other reason to write this other than, I just never knew. I didn't know the difference of the two. I got opinions of others, read some reviews on Amazon and made the decisions I did. I am not affiliated with either product in anyway, nor is either product endorsing or giving me anything for anything I say or don't say (although I would love that)!

My girls and I love to play Play-Doh. I introduced it to them when L was 24 months; M was a little young, she was 14 months old and closely supervised. The good thing is that she is so "Monkey See, Monkey Do" when it comes with L. L was pretty good about following the rules when it comes to "activities at the table."

THE TABLE: My husband made a table that's the perfect size for the girls to sit on the floor and color at, do activities, play games, etc. There are rules for most things at this table. If they don't follow the rules of said activity, then we put whatever it is away. This sounds stern and maybe mean, but it's not as bad as it sounds. I typically remind them if they need, all it normally takes is one reminder and we're all good!

Rules for coloring at the table: All crayons have to stay at the table. If they get up from the table, they aren't allowed to carry a crayon away with them. Basically the same rules for Play-Doh!

I buy the 2-packs of disposable table clothes from Target and I fold one in half, lay it on the floor and put THE TABLE in the middle. This makes for easy clean up! We are able to get most of the Play-Doh up but there's always a little that we miss. I carefully pick up the table cloth shake it out outside, fold it up and put it away for the next time! 

We started off with the Play-Doh Fun Factory. This is fun, but gets boring after awhile. While at Target one day, there was some Play-Doh sets on sale. They chose The Play-Doh Magic Swirl Ice Cream Shoppe and it was fun for them, although I had to help them with making most things. Helping them with these things wasn't an issue, I always sat right there playing along side them. BUT THEY WANTED TO MAKE THE ICE CREAM THEMSELVES. Even though they needed help with most parts of this, they still had fun with it. They would still play with this (if I hadn't have gotten rid of it). The reason I didn't like it, it was so hard to clean and not have Play-Doh dry up inside certain pieces (most of the pieces). This was more ME, that didn't like getting this Play-Doh set out. They couldn't play with multiple colors without mixing them because it was so hard to clean and took so much time to clean (L doesn't like when the colors mix). 

Christmas 2012 they got The Play-Doh Fun with Food - Meal Makin' Kitchen. This was a huge set. Fun to play with (for all of us)! Easy clean up! I would recommend this for anyone! They also received The Play-Doh Zoo Shapin' Fun Set. I didn't get this zoo out until just a few weeks ago. Before opening it, my husband and I started looking at the box and it was a lot of stamps. You weren't really able to "make animals" or do much with the animals. You could go things like make kangaroo foot prints and stamp things with the alligator's mouth. We started talking about how the girls like to MAKE THINGS. They liked making the ice cream, they LOVE all the different kinds of things they can make with the kitchen! I needed to exchange this. 

While at ToysRUS I saw the Moon Dough. I didn't know much about it. I asked on twitter and received a lot of negative comments (messy, crumbly, doesn't stay together). I read some reviews (I read reviews for everything!! EVERYTHING! Several of the reviews mentioned they loved the Moon Dough sets, not the moon dough, so they just threw that stuff out and used the sets with Play-Doh. GREAT IDEA! (I thought so anyway!!

I brought home the Moon Dough Magic Zoo. This was such a hit!! When I opened it, I just put the moon Dough aside (my girls never saw it). They can actually MAKE ANIMALS with this! The crank is easy for them to turn. The animals they make can actually walk. There's a fence mold and we made some fenced in areas for the animals to sit in, they chose one part of it to be the door and they make the animals go in and out and used their imaginations and played with these animals for awhile. There's a penguin mold, gorilla mold, and a bear mold. Very cool idea but I'm glad I went into it  not even expecting to use the moon dough (so I wasn't disappointed with anything). The clean up with it, I don't know what the difference is with the moon dough sets and the Play-Doh sets, but the Play-Doh doesn't stick to any of the MD sets parts! It's pretty awesome! This set made me want to get another one!

L received the Moon Dough Snack Shack for her birthday. They also have a lot of fun with this as well. The popcorn only makes 3 pieces at a time, so that's not the best, but making the ice cream is very easy. This set, they would get bored with quickly if they were playing WITH JUST THIS BY ITSELF. But I still can't get over how easy it is to use the Play-Doh with these sets. Pretty much NO CLEAN UP NEEDED!
I wold buy more of both products! I just know to read specifically what are included in the sets with the Play-Doh. I know what it is my girls like to do/make with them. If there's JUST a lot of stamps, it's not for us. I just feel like we have more options now that I realize we can branch out and chose from the Moon Dough sets.  The Moon Dough is messy, crumbly, we just set it aside; still winning with the toy itself! We have plenty of play-doh we can use with it all!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

The Most Stressful Pediatrician Appointment EVER!

M had been potty trained for a month now. Wearing big girl panties with only two accidents the first week and perfect all of the rest! She loves her pretty Tinkerbell big girl panties and of course, she wants to wear them to bed too. L went through this; her wearing her Minnie Mouse panties was big stuff and she also wanted to wear them at night. I am able to rationalize with them on why they can't do this right now. I explain that the day will come when they can wear these big girl panties 24 hours a day. They understand. L was fine with her nighttime pull-ups. BUT M, well I didn't anticipate the panties happening when they did, and I had just opened a box of diapers. The nighttime DIAPER for her wasn't good enough. For the first few weeks it was okay, but this past week, I thought she had just had enough!!

(I am leading up to this horrible, stressful appointment)

This past week (the whole week), starting right after her bath when I was getting her ready for bed (about to put on this nighttime diaper) she would start telling her "business" hurts. Throughout the week, I just thought she was just saying this because she didn't want to wear the diaper. She never said this throughout the day, NEVER! It did concern me. I would look at it, it was okay, I just knew it was the diapers. I would put her diaper on, then her pajamas and she would get upset about "this BIG diaper." I showed her that L's pull-up was also BIG and she this seemed to pacify her. 

This past Friday night/Saturday morning about 1:00 am, M woke up in a screaming fit! She was so unsettled and cried off and on for about 45 minutes. Was it her tummy, her teeth, did she have a bad dream? I couldn't tell ... I had no idea! This is about the time that she should be getting her 2 year molars but she wouldn't let me feel, see, give her Oragel or anything! A little bit into this, she started holding "her business," I asked her if she had to pee and her reply was, that it hurt. Eventually she peed. It didn't seem to bother her when she peed, but with as much as she was talking about this area hurting, I couldn't help but wonder if she had a UTI. She was up quite a bit longer and eventually got comfy snuggling with Mommy and fell back to sleep. 
(It didn't seem like the peeing was the issue)

The following morning, she woke up pretty fussy, then started the crying that her business hurt!! I looked at it really good, it seemed a bit red. I called our pediatrician. I'm so glad they have some hours on Saturday and Sunday for cases like these! Our appointment was at 11:30. Twenty minutes after I made her appointment, she told me her teeth were hurting, she let me check them and I could feel 2 of her molars coming through. I gave her some Oragel and she was a perfectly new kid! I was still taking her in to get checked. 

I knew they would want a urine sample so I had her drinking and drinking. In the waiting room she said she had to pee! This was good, right?? Well, they put the potty hat under the toilet seat to catch her urine. I sat her on, realized the potty hat wasn't sitting up where it should be; So without thinking I scooted it forward (while she was sitting there) and it pinched her leg. She let out the worst cry and that was the end of her sitting on that toilet! I felt horrible! We went back into the treatment room, I settled her down as they were bringing a potty chair in for her. 

I don't really know how to describe this potty and how it was, but the assistant didn't lift the lid and put the "bowl" under it, she just sat it on top. It sat down in the toilet (this is why I didn't notice it) but after awhile of sitting there, it started to hurt M. This poor girl had the worst ring around her bottom and on parts of her legs. Just to give you a visual, it looked like what a whipped cream container looks like sitting down in this potty. It was a medical thing, with lines for measurements, etc, it just wasn't put together properly. My poor baby, she was having such a hard time, just one thing after another!

Before this potty started to hurt her, she was having a good time sitting on the potty, Her, L and myself were singing, they brought them both a Popsicle, we were being silly and having fun while waiting for her to pee. But once she got that ring around her bottom and it started to hurt, she wasn't having any part of it. I tried to get her to sit back on the toilet and it was like trying to wrestle a wild animal.

Now the worst part of all of this, when the doctor initially came into our room, I told him that this appointment was probably all for nothing! I gave him the pantie/diaper background. I told him about the teething. (I said, I thought, even though I have over half a box of diapers left, I should bite the bullet and buy some pull-ups for her), but since she had been complaining all week (even though only at night once I put her diaper on), especially after the episode in the middle of the previous night and the way she woke up that morning, that I should have her looked at! He agreed that I did the right thing bringing her in (although he was being pretty candid about some of it). The doctor examined her and said everything look okay, just slight irritation (she does have sensitive skin and I did give her a bubble bath toward the end of the previous week, I know, not the smartest decision). But he still would like to get a urine sample with all of the complaining from her... just to be sure. I had no idea how I was going to make this happen!!

The assistant recommended that I sit her on the toilet, for me to reach around behind her and hold the cup under her. SERIOUSLY?!?!? But I really didn't see any other option. They had already mentioned a catheter and that wasn't happening! It was hard enough getting her to let the doctor look at her. I believe what he said was, "You are incredibly strong. I am proud of how strong you are" Non of it made sense lol but I believe he was just at a loss of words for how hard it was to get the look he was finally able to get. SHE IS ONE STRONG BABY!

I already felt so gross. I used to work in a hospital and I know how dirty hospital floors and doctor office floors really are! During this appointment I sat on the floor of their bathroom while she hugged me AND I sat on the floor in the exam room of the doctor's office because M wanted my arm around her... and there I sat once again on the floor of the bathroom with my arm in the toilet holding a specimen cup under my crying M. She had her arms around me so tight. L was sitting so good on the stool talking a mile a minute (but she was being so good through it all). I was just praying for some pee to come. 12:30 nothing. 12:35 nothing! The office closed at 1:00. My husband was on speaker trying to help us but nothing was working. She asked me to sing, I think it may have relaxed her. There came the pee all over my hand. YUCK!! But I managed to get some in the cup.

NO UTI. We left the office, went to Target to get pull-ups and as we were on our way into the store M got the biggest smile on her face (she knew we were going in to buy pull-ups) ... she looked at me with the biggest smile as I pushed them in the cart and said, "My business doesn't hurt anymore. It's all better!!"

I'm glad I got her checked out, it would've been horrible if something was wrong and I just blew it off thinking it was because of these pull-ups. But I think I got scammed by my 2 year old.   

Friday, March 1, 2013

Night Time Routines ... They are changing ... LOVE

March 1, 2013
There are so many things that I love about your nighttime routines these days. Both of the girls pretend so well and I love playing along! The best time is right after bath time while they are drying off and getting their pajamas on... 

A little bit of background: Both girls love Tinkerbell and lots of nights while we are getting ready for bed, we become fairies. L has named herself The Letter Fairy and M is The Puzzle Fairy (Daddy and Myself, our titles change often). While I am helping one, the other is flying around the room just talking and pretending like crazy! Last night when I was about it help M put her pajamas on, she looked at me and got so serious; She said, "Mommy, don't take my wings off!" I love it! I will pretend with them as much as they could ever want. They both have such vivid imaginations!

Tonight for example... 
They were talking on their phones while they were getting ready and pretending Silvermist (a fairy friend of Tinkerbell) was at the pediatrician's office at her 4 year checkup. L would talk on the phone about it then they would hang up. A few minutes later, she will pretend that her phone is ringing again, and of course, it is Silvermist giving the play by play of her appointment. Once everyone was dressed, we open the bedroom door and fly into the kitchen, see Daddy for a few minutes and tell him all of the new fairy news, then head into the living room to pick up toys and put them away (while still talking to Silvermist on the phone). Dinner was good. The girls were in really good moods. Several quick rounds of Simon Says, then off we were to the bathroom for brushing and flossing time. 

This time typically goes pretty smoothly. But tonight  L said she wanted Daddy to floss her teeth. After barely getting 2 teeth it's all tears. I sat on the floor, held her, let her calm down (I think she was just tired) and I got her to let me floss her teeth by telling her as soon as we were finished, that I would floss her toes.... Now, I'm not quite sure where this came from, but I knew it would make her laugh. I knew it would make her smile... and I knew it was silly enough that she would let me floss her teeth. I quickly added that the rule to flossing toes, is that it always had to be done AFTER flossing the teeth!!! ( this is a very important thing to add in there). 

She giggled the best giggles as I flossed her toes (she's very ticklish), then she asked to do mine (I am insanely ticklish), it was all a fun, goofy thing that was happening. I was laughing so hard from the tickling, she was laughing at me, Daddy and M was laughing at both of us. Then she wanted to floss his toes. (he still had his work/dress shoes on). As L "flossed his toes" she caught a little sock fuzz... and pointed out that was like getting food out from between her teeth (at least she understands why we floss) lol This all sounds pretty gross actually... Then of course, M wants in on the flossing of the toes. So that happened and we eventually ended up in bed. 

They were both really sleepy so there were a few tears. Daddy kissed us all goodnight and I laid there with them (like I always do, we co sleep and every night I lay with them while they fall asleep). Last night was really rough falling asleep. L was crazy tired and had a lot of tears. I asked her if she wanted me to sing and she said yes. I actually made up a 4 line song that I sang, slowly and quietly, over and over  (all it took was about five minutes) and both of them were out. 

Even with the tears in the beginning, bedtime was wonderful last night. I rubbed both of their faces and sang to them as they fell asleep. Tonight they wanted me to do the same thing. L started to cry and M asked if I would rub face, Although this is her way of asking that ... she would rub her own hand across her face and say to me, "go like this"...  I started to sing my four line song over and over as I rubbed their faces ... and they were once again asleep within five minutes! 

I will start doing this every night! It is a wonderful way to end the night with them!
                                                           Go to sleep baby ... 
                                                        Close your eyes baby ... 
                                                             I'll snuggle you ...
                                                                I love you ...  

An Update on Tantrums...

Tantrums happen.

Luckily for me, it seems that tantrums only really escalate when we are home. The kicking, turning red, horrible crying, everything you could imagine. 

There are two reasons I think they typically happen at home. One is that they know I mean what I say. I can generally talk them down from acting out. If I've given a few warnings and things aren't getting better. I'll tell them, if (whatever is happening that isn't okay) doesn't stop, then we are going to leave where ever we are (or stop whatever fun thing we are doing). I'll tell them that once. The second thing I do is tell (whichever one is acting okay) to talk to the other one because if what ever is happening doesn't stop then we are leaving ... This is the part that usually works. If we are out and something gets to this point, it TYPICALLY stops here. But if it doesn't then we WILL LEAVE OR STOP WHAT WE ARE DOING! If I don't mean it (when it comes to this) then I don't say it! So we don't typically get to the point of tantrum when we are out. 

If whining or fussing starts while we are out, something I say to them often is, "People are here to shop, see the animals at the zoo, (whatever is appropriate for where we are). None of then, including Mommy want to hear you fuss or whine. If you want to be able to stay (and/or come back), then you should think about stopping. 

This is something I think I say multiple times daily, "If you don't listen and follow the rules, then you don't get to do fun things". I have told them they should want to be good, want to take care of their things, want to follow the rules, and be proud of themselves for doing so. I explain this to them, I'm finding it hard to put into words. But then understand it, and sometimes they just need a little reminder. Sometimes if I'm saying this to L, then M will finish my sentence (and vice versa). 

The second reason this seems to happen at home is them being tired. I try not to plan late nights. We have a routine and I try to keep them as close as I can to their bedtime routine. Of course there are special occasions and we make exceptions. But being out too late (which isn't a normal thing for is) or simply being too tired will make this happen. Our girls go to bed around 7:30 and the tiredness starts to shine through between 4-5. Between my last post about this and now, I've learned some things I can do to talk them (mostly L) down from said tantrum.  

I have gotten to where I can point out to L, that this is a tantrum and the way she's acting is not okay. I can say to her, stop crying so you can  hear me (she stops, I get a pouty lip from her) but if we get to this, I can typically diffuse the situation by a short conversation about the behavior. If there is no end in site, I'll carry her kicking and screaming into her room, sit her in her bed and tell her she can come out when she stops. I leave her door open. I'm usually greeted a short time later by either a hug or a kiss.

A lot of the times, I can tell when the tiredness is extreme and has potential for tantrum activity. This is when I change up an activity or room that we are in (often) or what helps a lot is them helping Mommy. I can say, "You know, I really need help with something. Can you carry this to Mommy and Daddy's room for me?" or "Can you put this in the dirty clothes for me". Anything like that! My girls love board games! We can play a game. Sweeping the floor (they love this. I don't leave their little brooms out or they end up in the air, so they like when they get to help me sweep); they call it, "Finding the dirt". They are so looking forward to when I let them mop the floor!

This has been more of a ramble for me to remember these times. The tantrums aren't fun. I'm glad they seem to be happening less and less! I decided to blog more for myself to remember everything and that's happening while watching these sweet girls grow up! So these tantrums aren't fun, but I love the snuggles that come after! I love that I've gotten more in tune to them in the afternoon (when I am typically getting worn down from my day), I love that we changed our reading time to the afternoon because of this and we snuggle more while reading. They've always been snuggly babies, but with L just celebrating her 3rd birthday, I realize more now than ever that this time is going by so quickly. The quiet moments when we sit together and read, or they are sleepy so they ask me to hold them and rub their faces, I love these times! I love these babies! Tantrums or not, fun times and not so fun times... I love my life. It seems hectic at times, but I wouldn't change it for anything!