Twin Adventures

Twin girls now rule the house.

Broken Schedule

Finding the best schedule to accommodate two growing girls can be somewhat difficult. We’ve been on a schedule pretty much since the girls were born. It didn’t make too much sense to Anton and I to be completely baby-led because we knew, inevitably, that would lead to them being on different time-lines. Something we certainly didn’t want. Our schedules have worked out pretty well for us. It does seem like we are constantly doing something baby related, but then… we did have twins right?!

After the first few weeks or the first month, we’ve followed a eat-play-sleep routine. Girls wake up, we feed them, we do tummy time or assorted other activities and then nap time. The only real difference throughout the last seven months has been how frequently their feedings are. We’ve gone from somewhat on demand, to about every two hours, to about every three hours. Every three hours has been the standard for the majority of the time; probably four or five months.

At our six month check-up, when we were discussing our feeding schedule, our doctor referred to what we were doing as “grazing”. Which is “one-hundred percent Ok”. I have complete trust in my doctor; he’s been my doctor since the day I was born and has never steered me wrong. So I want it to be on record that what we did was not because I didn’t believe what he had to say. He mentioned grazing, and I took that as meaning that most other six months old are eating less frequently. I decided to take out one of our feedings. Down to four. It seemed to work okay… for a little while.

To make up for the loss of one feeding, we tried to give them an extra 20-30mls per feeding. It seemed that although we were feeding them fewer times throughout the day, they were actually eating less at each meal. Not ideal, but we wanted to stick with it to see if the girls just needed to adjust their intake. The only good things that came out of our change was the extra spare time Anton and I had between feedings, and the girls were taking naps that were a little longer. It quickly went downhill and we found ourselves with cranky babies that were no longer sleeping through the night. In fact, we had a few of the worst nights we’ve had since we brought the babies home. It had been so long since we’d fed them during the night, it didn’t occur to us that they were waking up because they were hungry.

Well, that turned out to be the problem. We decided on Friday to go back to our original schedule. Anton started up with it again on Saturday. And since then.. it has been so much better. Maretta and Shula have both slept every night since then. Not so much crankiness in the evening and their naps during the day are going fine.

Really need to learn to just do what we do, and not worry so much about what the “norm” is. However, saying that, I have ordered some sleep books. I’m hoping it’ll give me some insight into the different methods and if there are any good tips that we haven’t heard of yet. Sleep itself will have to be a whole other post to itself!

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6 Month Update

We’ve entered into a new chapter; “Six to Twelve Months”. We’ll start small though, and focus on just the sixth month for now.

According to BabyCenter (one of my favourite baby websites!) we can expect our girls to:

  • Turn towards sounds and voices….. Check for both! Any noise in the house deserves complete attention.
  • Imitate sounds, blow bubbles….. Check for both! I wish Shula would be a little less messy with her bubble blowing!
  • Roll in both directions….. Check for both! Maretta has got the rolling mastered. Shula can do it.. but she doesn’t show as much interest.
  • Reach for objects and “mouth” them….. Check for both! All I can say… ew, drool.
  • Sit without support….. Half-check? Meta is getting there.. maybe two or three seconds at a time. Shula, not so much. She likes to bend forward. I wouldn’t consider it sitting though.
  • Be ready for solid foods….. Big fat check! And loving it! Although we tried a Chicken Vegetable Casserole the other night… Not a fan favourite. We’ll stick with simple foods for a bit longer.
  • Lunge forward and possibly start crawling….. No! No crawling yet, thank god. It’s coming though. They’ve got the arm movement, and the leg movement. Now, they just need co-ordination!
  • Jabber or combine syllables….. No idea. Sure, they jabber but I couldn’t tell you if they’re combining syllables or not.
  • Drag objects towards themselves….. Check! We’ve certainly noticed an increase in toy interest.

So, just starting our sixth month and the girls seem quite on track. Which is nice, considering they were a bit early. We’ve definitely been increasing the amount of time they spend sitting. Our doctor mentioned it at our sixth month check-up:

“Are they sitting unsupported yet?”

“Uh… no.”

“It’s fine, it’s fine! Should come anytime now. If it doesn’t happen by eight months, let me know.”

So now, of course, I’m obsessed with getting them to sit on their own! I know, I know, it’ll happen. But still, a mom can’t wait to see her little girls reach the next big milestone! It’s not like I can start them on walking yet…..

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“Solid” Foods.

A few weeks ago, we started introducing “solid” foods.

We’re going strong with the beginner stage of solid foods. Single fruits or veggies. We are also doing a rice or oat cereal. We mostly still stick to formula and breastmilk. At dinner time(4pm) we give each baby a quarter of a jar of food. Going at that rate, a jar of food lasts us for two meals. We try and alternate between a fruit and a vegetable. So we’ll do a vegetable for two days and then a fruit for two days. Don’t want the girls to develop too much of a sweet tooth! And, doing one kind of food for a couple of days gives us an opportunity to watch them for an allergic reaction of any kind. Then, at supper time(7pm) we give each baby one serving of rice or oat cereal.

It didn’t take too long for the girls to realize what a spoon and bowl meant. And didn’t take long for them to get the hang of eating something other than liquid. For the most, they now open their mouths wide and expectantly; it is really cute. Anton and I are fairly maticulous about keeping their faces clean while we are feeding and we always scoop up any food that makes its way back out of their mouths. We haven’t really gotten to the stage where the girls can help, although spoons have been our new play toys during the day. Maretta instinctively puts the spoon in her mouth, right way around. Shula usually looks at her spoon and then throws it at the dog or on the floor; whichever happens to be closer.

Feedings have been going great. I imagine soon enough we’ll move on to 6month foods. Blends of different fruits and veggies. And bigger quantities. But, for now I’m enjoying the two feedings that we’ve got. The girls make some of the cutest and ugliest faces I’ve seen. Peaches brought on a great “ugly” face from both of them the other night.

We did buy our high chairs the other weekend, but we don’t really use them much for feeding. We throw the girls in them when we are working in the kitchen or living room to give them some opportunity to work on their core muscles and be at the same level as we are. But, for the time being we prefer to just use their bouncy chairs. That way they don’t have to concentrate on sitting up as well as concentrating on eating. It’s a bit painful on our backs to lean down towards them, but it only takes a moment to unkink!

Bibs have become our new favourite item. I hate to say it, because we really prefer shopping at local, canadian businesses but wal-mart has the best bibs. George brand. They are nice and big and have a large neckhole. A lot of the bibs we tried were not accomodating in the neck and either seemed too tight or fell off way to easily. I would say before we starting giving them solids, bibs were not an essential wardrobe item. Now that we have though, I couldn’t imagine going through a feeding without them! I’d much rather change out bibs then give the girls a new outfit a couple more times a day.

Without being too fussy about the items we use for feeding time, I’ve really come to like the gerber/nuk feeding spoons. Plastic spoon with a metal handle. We had originally gotten some really cute munchkin spoons. They are all plastic but the spoon is a little too deep for new eaters. I’m sure they will come in handy when they are a little older though. As I mentioned above, I love the wal-mart George brand bibs. The high chairs we have are Ikea brand. 25 bucks, nice and simple. They are perfect. The bowls we use are generic.. bowls. I’m not sure if the type of bowl would change the experience at all?!

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