My babies are turning 1 – didn’t I just bring them home?!?!?!

I can’t believe it. My babies are turning a year old. This last year truly went by SO fast. I feel like I blinked and I missed it yet I was here for it every single day. The saying “the days are long but the years are short” is the truest thing I’ve ever heard.

My favourite part of everyday has to be after breakfast when the boys are fed, washed up, dressed and put in their play area. I get to watch them interact and play together and it really is the most precious thing. They love to chat and chase each other around, what monkey sees the other monkey has to do. Having twins really is a blessing and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

Aiden, who I always felt would be the extrovert, is really the introvert. He has to take a minute to warm up to people but while at home he loves to be loud and scooting around. He’s walking freely and tries to walk fast but if there’s something he wants he’s quick to drop to his knees and quickly scurry to get it. He is also the cuddly one. He loves to curl up with you and watch Super Why or his nursery songs on YouTube, sucking on his wubanub (pacifier). Aiden is usually the one to wake in the middle of the night. I will leave him be for a few minutes to see if he’s just a little disoriented and going right back to sleep but I really love those times when he just needs to be held and rocked by his momma. Or he’s content to sit in his table for two chair and chill out watching the telly. He’s recently taken to sitting in the pool of plushy toys in the toy box and hanging out, sometime for upwards of an hour. He’s learned to climb up on the sofa on his own and loves going for the blinds…I need to quickly teach him how to get down as he went head first to the floor today. Also, he loves the camera on the phone – he loves to see himself and as soon as he sees my phone he will bolt from where ever he is, can’t get to it fast enough.

Quinn is my real little extrovert. He is so interested in talking. He gets a few words out such as “high-five, apple, all done, what’s that?” But the best is “ball” which is says in his deep, grumbly voice. But as you talk with him you can see the gears turning and hear that he’s trying to repeat back what it is you say. He’s found love for plushy toys like piglet and tigger and is so sweet that he’ll give you a hug and a kiss. He has taken a few steps and can walk around assisted no problem but isn’t quite ready to walk around on his own and I’m perfectly fine with that. He has this great, deep from the belly laugh which usually comes out in the evenings during that last bit of play time before bed. He loves books, his favourite is Goodnight Moon. He really is a happy baby. He too can be quite cuddly – he likes to get up in your arms with a toy or watch a few minutes of a show before wiggling out of your arms, off to steal whatever toy Aiden has.

Quinn has six teeth and his come in fast and full. Aiden has six with one more currently cutting through. Poor Aiden’s teeth are the slow and painfully drawn out type. I dread when the molars come. It requires a fair bit of Tylenol for them and patience and sympathy for me.

Quinn is the one with the appetite – the list of what he doesn’t like is easier to remember than what he does like because its so small. Unlike Aiden who has inherited my appetite and is the fussy eater. Quinn understands if you say “breakfast? Lunch” Dinner? Snack?” – he’ll drop whatever he’s doing and make a bee line to the high chairs. Both prefer to feed themselves but will still let me spoon feed them certain things – soup, yogurt, oatmeal, etc. We’re slowly starting to play with utensils but plates are a waste of time as Aiden immediately has to pick it up and toss it (and whatever food of course) to the dogs. Which oddly enough I haven’t heard them complain! They both love to see Dada with a cup in the play area – if its not in a coffee cup they know they will get a taste of whatever it is. Tonight they all shared a homemade strawberry milkshake (frozen strawberries, Greek yogurt, milk and a little cream) and the boys of course LOVED it! In mid to late February we transitioned off the formula onto the Homogenized milk. We still do 3 bottles of 6-7 oz each. Quinn can be quite demanding for his bottle – he has this high pitched squeal which he knows gets on my nerves but he’s protesting his hunger and I can respect that.

We’re adding another gate to our main floor this weekend – gate number 3! One blocking the steps (which we had to keep the dogs on the main level while at work), one now to block the step down to front entry way and the bigger one dividing the living room to give the boys space to play. We’ll now open the rest of the main floor to them so they have more space to explore. They look over the living room wall with such wonder knowing there’s a whole world out there if they could just get to the other side of the fence lol. This ought to be a fun new venture.

Not only have my babies thrived and grown but I have as well. I never wanted kids as I was too busy enjoying my life but I couldn’t be happier as a mom. Sure its not all roses and rainbows. This is THE hardest job I’ve ever done in my life. But those boys are worth more than any paycheque or materialistic item I’ve ever had in my possession. In those first 3-4 months I wondered how the hell was I going to survive? I missed my lifestyle and the professional career I had. In months 4-7 I think I came around that my life was going to be different but being home all the time, I wondered how the hell was I to manage two babies, two dogs, keep the house clean and keep meals on the table each night. Then winter came and being house bound with two babies and two dogs was quite challenging. But we’ve all managed to survive and grow and we’re still here, happy as ever. I do try to enjoy and really savour my time with the boys. Before you know it they’ll be off to school and we wont have our days together like we do now. If the laundry is piled up – who cares? Upstairs hasn’t been dusted and tidied- who cares? The fix-it, clean-it, purge-it list just keeps growing – who cares? Life is too short and there’s not enough hours in the day so, meh. I know that I don’t have to do it all in one day, hell or even in one week. If it doesn’t get done then its not exactly top priority and I’ll get to it when I can. In the meantime, I make sure everyone is fed and clean, try to get them all out for some fresh air when possible, and still alive, relatively unscathed when bedtime rolls around.

I think as a person gets older you can take life for granted and getting to experience the simple things through the eyes of a child is such a blessing that makes you really step back and appreciate and be thankful. I am looking forward to our small celebration for the boys birthdays and while I’m certainly not wishing away the time I’m so excited to continue on our journey, watching these two beautiful souls grow and develop.

Xo,

C.

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Brand review: Boscia

Last year, at the end of the summer I was lucky enough to receive a package from Boscia containing many of their products to try. I am so overdue on this post but in typical mom style I put my own self care on the back burner. I guess the bright side is I was really able to put these products to the test so I can give them my most honest review. Some of these products will remain in my beauty regime (I have already repurchased a few), some were what I think would be great for others but just not right for me, and others I just did not like.

Boscia means BOtanical SCIence. The leader in botanical science, Boscia uses innovative Japanese technology creating highly effective products without using harsh preservatives. I did immediately notice each product had a best before date stamped on each box which when sounds like common sense, when you think about it is a great thing for items you will be using on your skin. Almost all skincare and cosmetics have the little jar on the packaging with 6M, 12M, 18M, etc., letting you know the shelf life once the product has been opened. But shouldn’t they all have an actual expiration date??? How long has that particular jar of cream or lipstick been sitting on the shelf before you were putting it on your face????

Pre-pregnancy my skin was on the oily side and blotting sheets were my best friend. While I was pregnant my skin was definitely at its best – normal, no dryness, no oiliness. Now I would say, with the help of Boscia, I am keeping a better routine so I’m not normal but not as oily as I used to be.

I will link to these particular products on the Boscia site, sign up for their emails and save yourself 10%, but they are also available at your local Sephora store.

Luminizing Black Charcoal Mask:

We’ve all seen those YouTube videos of folks smearing a black masque all over their face only to have it hurt like hell when trying to peel it off. I’m sure even I learned a few new expletives (and I curse like a sailor!). I was super excited when I seen this product in my goodie box, I couldn’t wait to try it. I wasn’t sure if this was going to hurt like hell or not but I had tried other peel-masks so I was down to give it a go. I wasn’t going to be filming it for YouTube anyhow so I got into it right away.

  • I found it best to apply with a foundation brush, it applied more evenly
  • Has a smell, not nice and fruity like other masks I had tried but I didn’t find it overpowering and it didn’t linger as the mask was drying
  • Definitely pulled the gunk out of my pores, especially my nose
  • Left my skin feeling clean
  • While drying it didn’t feel tight like I couldn’t move my face and talk (like other masks I had tried)
  • Defiantly need to follow with a heavy moisturizer or moisturizing sheet mask
  • Doesn’t leave a residue, and small amounts around edge of application easily comes off with a wet cloth
  • Didn’t leave my skin red and was easy to peel off
  • Couldn’t tell if it directly reduced the size of my pores as I am using a few other items in their Charcoal line but have noticed a difference in my skin not being as oily pre-pregnancy

Overall, I love this product and will never be without it. The first time I tried it I used it all over but since have just been using it in targeted areas (T-zone and upper cheeks). I have actually purchased another tube already.

Detoxifying Black Charcoal Cleanser:

I have been using this cleanser consistently since I received it and will say its one of those products where if I only used it for a week then I’m not sure that I would give it a great nod. But I’m trying to use up whatever products I have and not be wasteful so I stuck with this and I’m glad that I did, its made a significant difference in my skin so I will be repurchasing it once its empty. The biggest thing I noticed that made me stick with this product what’s how my face wasn’t tight feeling or super dried out after I got out of the shower – clearly a sign my old cleanser was not right for my skin type.

  • Leaves skin feeling clean which is what you want in a cleanser but not dried out
  • Doesn’t have a smell
  • Love the pump but it’s a bit stiff (still hasn’t loosened)

Revitalizing Black Charcoal Hydration Gel:

This product has a cooling sensation when you first put it on but it doesn’t last long and isn’t uncomfortable. I love that its in a nice pump and you can see the amount of product in the container so you don’t contaminate it by dipping your fingers in and can tell when its close to the end so you can repurchase. It gives the right amount of moisture without turning greasy throughout the day (notice a trend here – clearly the line of Charcoal products is working for my skin type), its not sticky and absorbs quickly. Another product to repurchase.

Super-Cool de-Puffing Eye Balm:

This product is AMAZING! This was exactly what I needed in the early days of being a twin mom when we were not on a sleeping schedule and lucky to get four hours in a row. I’d put this on in the morning to get rid of those big bags under my eyes and it made such a difference. I found it works best if you rub a bit on your finger and swirl it around to warm it up, then pat it into your under eye area rather than just swiping it under which makes the product pull. The cooling effect is nice and tingly but only for a short period of time so its not bothersome. This is another product I will for sure be repurchasing when it runs out and recommend it to every mother out there.

Baby Soft Foot Peel:

Ok so being a twin mom I hardly ever have time to splurge on myself and can’t remember the last time I had a mani/pedi. Actually, come to think of it, I recall cashing in some gift cards at the spa when I was pregnant with the boys so that was winter of 2016. So I was quite excited to see this item in my goodie box. Below are the notes I made when I finally had time to try it out back in November.

Saturday November 18:

    • felt cold going on
    • Not a fan of the smell, kind of soapy
    • 20 minutes in and feet feel freezing
    • Wore socks with the bags to help with absorption
    • Lasted 70 of 90 minutes- feet were freezing!!!
    • Feet, between toes are tingling. Feels like when you put deep cold on your body

Tuesday November 21: finally some peeling action, light peeling, mostly on right foot

Wednesday November 22: soaked in the bath for 1+hour and noticed feet were more peeled. used loofah on my feet and OMG the skin that came off was unreal! Feet feel smooth and super soft. No amount of soaking and rubbing with pumice stone would remove this amount of dead skin and calluses. Nothing came off top of feet, still a few small areas that will peel.

I would recommend this product to anyone, way more effective than a pedicure. I have since repurchased this item, one to use asap and one to keep as a backup. I will definitely keep this as part of my upkeep going forward and am looking forward to using them in the summer months.

Charcoal Jelly Ball Cleanser:

This was quite new to the Boscia lineup when I received my goodie box so I had seen it starting to pop up on beauty YouTube channels and was excited to try it. I actually just broke this out of the box recently because I had so many products open I didn’t want to open one more item that might/might not get used and not get a fair trial.

My overall impression is this is effective and fun to use but its not something I think I would purchase again. Maybe if I had tween daughters it would be fun to try but I personally prefer a nice, sleek looking bottle of cleanser that I would use in the shower or leave on my bathroom counter top. It seems kind of gimmicky and I’m not a fan of the container to house it in, in between uses – not very sterile at all since its just two pieces of plastic. As I only recently opened this to give it a try I can’t attest to how long it lasts, but I assume quite a while if its not in your shower with water beading on it constantly. Fun to try but not something I would consistently keep in my regime, especially with so many other great products out there.

Black Charcoal Cleansing Cloths:

Who hasn’t tried cleansing cloths from various brands??? I certainly have but not this brand so I was excited to try them but unfortunately these were not my favourite. They do remove makeup and I am using them so they are not wasted but I don’t like the size of the cloths, I don’t like the texture, they feel like they are tugging at my skin, they don’t really glide along and they don’t have enough solution to do a thorough job. I’ll be sticking with my favourite drug store brand cleansing cloths for now.

Charcoal Makeup Melter:

To be honest, I don’t get to wear a full face of makeup like I did before the babies came so this was another product I had been waiting to try. I have only tried it two or three times so its not gotten a fair chance to persuade me plus its the first makeup melter I’ve tried so I have nothing to compare it to. But I can say after using it 3-4 times, I’m not a fan. I’m not sure that this type of product would be a favourite of mine no matter the brand. I’ve seen many beauty YouTubers use them and I guess there’s a reason why I’ve never tried them. They just don’t appeal to me – why rub a handful of waxy type product over your face when a simple cleanser, cleansing cloth or liquid oil makeup remover can do the same job. This is not a dig at Boscia but honestly, just thinking of using this makes me flash back to the ending of Indiana Jones Raiders of the Lost Arc where all the people melt. That’s what you look like when you’ve rubbed the makeup melter into your skin and you’ve got black circles around your eyes and an oily, tan look gel all over your face. But I digress. This product does take off makeup but leaves an oily feel so I’d follow up with a cleanser anyhow. It’s sitting on the bathroom vanity and in the spirit of not being wasteful I’ll try and use it up (or maybe I can pass it along) but its not something I would purchase (nor try from another brand).

Make-up Breakup Cool Cleansing Oil:

Now speaking of makeup remover, this product I could get behind. This product removes all of your makeup, even waterproof mascara, without drying out your face or leaving behind an oily residue. It leaves your skin feeling nice and soft. I like that its in a pump. And Boscia pumps are great, maybe a little stiff at first but they have a nice, long arm which makes a difference so the product is disbursed onto your palm/facecloth, not left leaving you short while half of the pump runs down the side of the bottle (like my babies body wash and lotion – ain’t no mom got time for that!!). I like this way more than my previous preferred brand so I am now converted, I will be repurchasing once this product runs out.

Overall:

There were a few other items in my goodie box which I have yet to try, again, staying on that “use it up and not be wasteful theme” (which I’m actually becoming a lot better at), so I’ll keep you up to date on those. Also, I did share my goodie box with a friend and while I can’t recall exactly what she chose for herself she did say the other day that’s she’s been using the eye cream and has been enjoying it and seeing results. In my opinion while not all of the products are perfect for my skin type (but not all products of any brand would be), Boscia is a brand I enjoy and would consider using full time. Actually, by the results I’ve seen for my skin type, I am defiantly a convert and will be repurchasing many of their products. I also want to say a big thank you to Boscia for such a generous opportunity.

It’s been ages…

And I mean AGES since I’ve written a blog post. I’ve just been busy, and not the kind of busy where I have lots to tell or write about but just the “general, everyday taking care of twins” kind of busy. But I have been feeling a little inspired to write lately so I am putting a nap and a shower to the side, heating up this cup of tea for the third time and am going to try and knock out a post about our last few months.

The boys first “vacation”:

In September we took the boys on their first airplane ride across the country. My in-laws were supposed to visit but due to some health issues we ended up taking the boys back east to see them (and the rest of our family). Now that its been a while since our trip I can look back and say I’m so glad we took them. If this was me writing before the trip then this would be filled with all my anxiety and stress. G was the one worried about the boys flying – he didn’t want to be “that” family on a long haul flight with two crying babies. Turns out they did AMAZING and slept the whole way. One person’s advice was the younger they are the better they fly as that’s all they do is sleep, its when they’re older and you have to entertain them in such a small space that kids become irritated and have a tantrum or two.

No my anxiety was about the boys being off their schedule and not having all of our gear to keep them happy. It’s a 3.5 hour time difference from where we live which when you are on a schedule that’s huge. But overall the trip went well. My sister-in-law purchased a few second hand items, swings and bouncy chairs, so the boys wouldn’t be totally out of their element. We rented a vehicle while there and schlepped our stroller frame, two bucket seats and the bases through the airport with us. I would say the biggest issue we had was because there were so many people that wanted to see the boys that they didn’t get their naps and we had quite a few fussy blowouts to deal with daily (which I’m sure made the visits not so pleasant but oh well). And I’ll admit, it was pretty great to have all those extra hands willing to help at the slightest squeak from either of the boys. Since we’ve been back G has said more times than I could count how nice it would be to live in the same city as our family so we could have the extra help.

Unfortunately we didn’t see any of our friends (sorry peeps!). We didn’t even take advantage of the help and have a night out on our own, even though there were plenty of offers. During the second week we did however come down with colds, the boys first, and thus had one day where we stayed home, warded off the visitors and managed to stick to our usual schedule. The boys were 5 months at the time and we had started solids, but again due to the hectic ness, I decided it would be best to just stick to the formula and we could pick up where we left off when we got home. BTW the boys are now eating like champs and man what I wouldn’t give for those baby formula diapers now!

But overall I’m most happy that the boys got to meet G’s parents, their Great Grandmother, Aunts, Uncles and Cousins. When it comes down to it, family is all that matters.

Thanksgiving:

Another holiday that has passed but not one we put a great deal into. Here in Canada Thanksgiving is in early October and while it is a big holiday for many, Thanksgiving is not the big holiday event that I feel it is in America. Don’t get me wrong, we do take the time to get together with loved ones, cook a big feast and take a moment to realize how lucky we are and be thankful for everything we have. But I don’t think it is to Canadians as it is to Americans. Or maybe that’s just my ignorance and its what Television and Movies have made me believe – the NEED for college kids to go home for Thanksgiving AND Christmas; The NEED to travel to be with family’s thus making the airports a nightmare. Though American thanksgiving is always on my radar as its when Christmas kicks into full gear, the atmosphere changes so quickly you can feel your bank accounts draining with each whiff of winter air. Although personally I’ve always put Christmas off until after Remembrance Day and my birthday which is in late November.

Halloween:

Even though this was the boys first Halloween, a holiday which I love and become a big kid again, they sort of participated. I did get excited and purchased them the cutest costumes ever but decided not to take them out for the official begging for candy ritual. Mainly because their costumes were more for the photo opportunity and not made for our Canadian fall evenings. But next year we’ll be all over it!! If I’m being honest I’ve already started researching family costumes.

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But overall, we are all doing great. The boys are now 7.5 months old and each weigh a hearty 20 lbs each (!!!). Winter has arrived here in Calgary and we are embracing it as much as possible and trying to get out of the house and walk the neighbourhood at least a few times a week (some weeks more than others). The boys look super cute bundled up in their snowsuits but they hate getting bundled up and get overheated while waiting on the other to get ready – honestly I’m exhausted by the time I get them out the door. Just wait until they get older and can express how they “have to go potty” just as we walk out the door….good times await us lol. I actually can’t wait until they’re big enough for us to actually do some winter activities with them like sliding and xc skiing. But I’m still enjoying them being so little right now. As mentioned, there are a few birthdays coming up at the end of this month – G and I are actually just one day apart. Then of course Christmas will be on top of us. We are both very excited for the boys first Christmas, getting to experience the magic of Christmas through your children’s eyes is something we can’t wait for. Please don’t abandon me, I promise I will try to post a bit more going forward.

C.

Baby stuff 

“Oh my, your place looks so different than the last time I was here!” The words out of a friends mouth when she first came to see the boys after they were born. 

We don’t have two of everything but we do have two of a lot of things and we are quickly running out of space alread and the boys are not yet five months old. Just last week I actually banished my coffee table to the basement to make room for all of our stuff. I do try to find as much as I can second hand, actually except for just a few items, anything I purchased new I bought during Black Friday or Boxing Day sales, but sometimes you just gotta pay the price. 

  • Table for two: I did a review on this table (Here) where you can see what I really think of it but honestly this is an item I could not do without. I rarely feed the boys at the same time but when I do it’s using this seat. Also, we keep it on the floor in the living room and it’s low profile means I don’t have to strap the boys in all the time, this is a great option as a place to quickly plunk them down when I need two hands (or a break, those suckers are getting heavy!). 
  • 4Moms Momaroo: these we do have two of but at the whopping price of $359.99 CDN, we couldn’t afford (or justify) buying two brand new ones so I opted to buy two older models secondhand. They did take a little bit of getting used to for the boys but I love the size, quite a small footprint compared to traditional swings. I also love that they plug in but you’ll understand why with my next item.
  • Fischer Price Deluxe take along swing: these we do have two of  and I purchased them with money we received at our shower during a Black Friday sale last year so I got them for a good price. I still have these and use them daily but they live in the master bedroom where the boys sleep with me and are used “after bath/before final bottle then crib” time or “after middle of the night, just won’t go back to sleep!” feed. I don’t mind dealing with having to change batteries as they are not being used all day everyday but I got seriously sick of having to carry each baby downstairs then come back and carry each swing downstairs. That’s when I decided to find some used momaroos!
  • Fisher Price sit me up: these I did want two of. In one of the mom forums I’m in, a lot of mom’s were comparing these to bumbo chairs and said they had better support for those that had some good neck support but just starting to sit while assisted. I tried to find them second hand but to no avail I broke down and purchased two new ones. They were a bit big for the boys when we first started using them but the boys have grown into them nicely and the toy tray has been great at keeping them occupied and upright, off their backs for a while. 
  • Jumpers: these I did buy second hand but I bought two different styles. The JollyJumper with super stand and the Baby Einstein activity jumper (I have an older model but very similar). The boys love these and once they get a bit bigger I can get rid of a different seat/swing and keep these in use so we’re kind of in a transition period right now. The boys will each get to use one model one day then the next time I use them I switch which model they get.
  • Ikea antilop high chairs: these we would certainly need two of and we are just starting to introduce cereal, so we have yet another chair! I seen these all over social media though and they seem to be the favourite among MoMs (mom’s of multiples), I’m betting the price is a key factor when you have to buy 2+ 😉
  • Cribs and pack n plays: these are not items you need two of right away (or at all wrt PnPs) but I was lucky that our cribs were gifted to us and I got two PnPs, brand new in boxes, second hand thanks to a lady in my neighbourhood whom was going to add newborns to her dayhome but changed her mind (what was she thinking?!?). 

There are many other items that as a MoM you buy duplicates of, small toys, clothes, etc., but those are the bulk of large ticket items that have taken over my house. 

Tell me, is there anything you absolutely had to have two (or more of) for your kids? Don’t be shy, leave a comment below 🙂

C.

Product review: Little Navy blankets

So I found these blankets on social media and loved the personalized style so much so that I immediately ordered one for each of the boys. You can order yours here at Little Navy.

This company started when, like many moms out there, returning to the workforce was difficult and the owner felt the need to contribute to the household income so she taught herself to sew and started making keepsakes for family and friends and the business grew from there. Did I mention she’s Canadian?!?! I’m all for supporting local businesses.

Little Navy offers many products which you will love. I’ll admit it was hard to browse their website and limit myself to just one item (I am however waiting on a particular product to become available again). From muslin swaddles, blankets of various sizes, crib sheets and pillows and apparel to outfit your cute little one in, Little Navy has something for everyone.

I chose to go with the personalized crib (52×35) soft chenille minky blanket and they fit the boys cribs perfectly. You can choose from tons of designs, the colours you like and you have a choice of three different font sizes. I ordered these at the beginning of the summer so aside from a few cuddles when trying to get the boys to sleep at night I haven’t used them much as its been our hottest, driest summer on record. But I do love that the blanket covered both me and the baby that was in my arms comfortably. I can’t wait to snuggle up with these and the boys when the weather changes and winter moves in.

The one flaw I do see with these is the colour white – lets be honest, once these boys get older these blankets will loose their pristine white colour once they are covered in PB&J, or dragged across the floor after the dogs trek in with their muddy paws, or something along that line. But for now I won’t worry about that. I’ll just enjoy the beautiful softness and cuddles as much as I can.

C.

“OMG twins! You must be exhausted/a superhero/so busy”

Every time I meet someone, a stranger when I’m shopping or making a new mom friend, I always get the same reaction: “OMG twins – you must be busy/exhausted” or “You’re my hero” (usually from FTM’s of singletons). In all honesty, I don’t feel like a superhero and I don’t feel particularly exhausted either. The above image was posted to Instagram by a group that I follow and I read through all 185 responses. Thankfully some were just short “easier/harder” answers so I could quickly get through all the responses but personally, I find multiples easier than everyone thinks and so did the majority of MoM’s (mom of multiples). Let me explain.

I only have my set of almost five month old twins so I have no clue how “easy” a singleton is, I have nothing to compare to, but I find raising twins easier. Sure there are good days and bad days, good days and bad moments. But because I’m outnumbered and don’t have help on a daily basis, from day one I’ve had to be more regimented and scheduled than if I only had one baby to take care of. My boys don’t get to have the same comforts as a singleton. What’s expected for a singleton is a luxury for multiples. Sounds harsh, and quite sad, but my boys have had to learn patience from such a young age (they’re still learning of course and do test my patience daily).

For example. We’ve been sleep training since and using the CIO (cry it out) method since day one and those are choices that we didn’t make but were made for us in order for my husband and I to survive. If I’m feeding one baby and the other is across the room in his swing and starts to have a meltdown because he’s hungry too, I can’t put the feeding one down to console the crying baby or else I’d have two meltdowns to deal with. And FYI moms, sure the CIO method will break your heart and take some getting used to but its not hurting your baby, you’re not leaving them to cry for hours, you’re teaching them to self soothe and become a little resilient. Sure I can feed both at the same time but its not something I prefer – trying to prop bottles so I can stop and burp, and then having bottles fall out of mouths and the cries that follow, is just not worth it to me. I do feed at the same time if I’m in a jam but I prefer to feed them separately and keep them 30 minutes apart. This allows them to have an enjoyable feed and get some 1:1 time with a parent. Whereas, I imagine, if I had a singleton, I could afford to feed on demand and run to console my baby each time they cried. FYI, the boys are formula fed and get 8 ounces 5 times a day. We slowly added 10 ml to their feed every few weeks to help get them to the larger amounts so we weren’t feeding every 2-3 hours, I need those longer spans in between feeds to be human.

I’ve been working on sleep training since day one as well, again, to help maintain a schedule and keep my sanity. Getting them to sleep at the same time is what allows me to have time to either feed myself, take a shower, get some laundry done or actually clean a room in the house. If I let them sleep whenever they wanted and not at the same time, then I’d be well malnourished, have nasty matted hair, smell worse than funky and our house really would be a pigsty. A friend with a baby a month older than my boys came over to visit and was impressed by how clean our house is. That is all due to being regimented and maintaining a schedule.

At five months later, I still maintain a daily log book for the boys. I note each feed, how much, how long (fast/slow paced), poop diapers (not pee as all I’d be doing is writing down notes although it would be nice to know how many diapers we’ve gone through since they arrived), naps and when they go down at night and when they wake in the morning. For the record (total mom brag) I usually get about 10 straight hours at night out of them 🙌🏼. Again, it wouldn’t be possible without our regimen.

I remember meeting a friend that doesn’t have kids for a walk and when we were departing she stood by in awe as I was loading the boys and their stroller into the van. “I’d offer to help but it looks like you’ve got this down pat and I’ll just be in the way”. As a MoM I HAVE to be more organized and structured than the average. Before kids I would watch Kate plus 8 and think “geez, its only bubble gum, loosen up a bit” but now that I have twins I totally understand where she was coming from. She still could have come down a notch or five but I totally get it. As a MoM even the simplest of tasks requires more thinking ahead, long term, which is in my opinion the only way to survive this crazy MoM life.

With all of that being said, I don’t want moms of singletons or numerous kids to walk away offended. Raising kids is difficult no matter how many you have and what their ages. You FTMs have the challenge of adjusting to parenthood just the same as I do and its hard for all of us. None of us have a sweet clue what we’re doing, we’re all just faking it day-to-day trying to make sure everyone is alive and well when its time to go to bed. I’ll also add that I do realize that you have to be able to roll with the punches and sometimes throw all schedules out the window. But being a MoM offers me a different perspective, one that singleton moms just might not think of. You see me pushing our huge stroller and immediately think of what you’re going through and just double it. But the reality is, I just have to approach it differently and if you were in my shoes you would adjust as well.

What do you think? Do you have multiples? Do you think they’re easier or harder than a singleton? If you have a singleton, do you think multiples would be harder or easier? Let me know in the comments below.

C.

Fed is best: the formula vs. Breastfeeding debate

I'll start by saying I whole heartedly agree fed is best. Baby's gotta eat and personally I don't care how that happens as long as your child is getting the nourishment they need.

But why is this such a heated debate? Sure the science will show that "breast is best". But the science isn't there to make breastfeeding the option that works for all women. I am one of the many women out there that has chosen to formula feed and I now have two, almost five-months old, chunky monkeys that are growing and developing just as good as any breastfed baby.

All throughout my pregnancy I had the stance that I will at least try to breastfeed but if it doesn't work out for me then formula it is. Once my boys arrived, our delivery and the week following was such a mess that what they were going to eat was the last thing on our minds (see my post about delivering twins and you'll understand that chaos). My boys were fed formula from the very start and I didn't (and still don't) have one ounce of guilt about it. My milk didn't come in until a week after their delivery and because they had been on formula I had no consultation with a lactation nurse and had no clue where to even start. I did give it a shot, once in the hospital with baby A and once again when my milk came in. But in my sleep deprived, "what the eff am I doing" state, I decided we would continue on as we had been and my boys would be just as healthy for it. In those first two weeks I had more on my plate than the average first time mom and I'm not talking about figuring out twins. I had a natural and caesarean birth which I was trying to recover from; I had a blood transfusion days after delivery so my iron and energy was low; I know I wasn't eating once I got home as I was putting myself on the back burner, plus trying to ensure I maintained my mental health (I was gravely afraid of postpartum in those early days). Beating myself up over not breastfeeding was stress I just didn't need so I didn't do it. And neither should any other mom. Hell I was fed carnation tin milk back in the 80's and I turned it ok.

We all need to back off and be supportive of whatever a moms choice and know that she is not doing it wrong, she is doing the best she can.

C.

Item review: Table for Two

When I was deep into my pregnancy and researching items that you needed and what would collect dust, I came across the Table for Two. The premise behind this seat is to cut feeding time in half by being able to feed both babies at once. Personally I prefer not to feed them at the same time unless they are both overdue and having a meltdown. Thankfully, a family member generously purchased this item for us as it is quite expensive (especially when two bouncers or the Twin Z pillow can do the same task).

Let me say I do love this seat and use it everyday. When we first come down in the morning its the best item we have to just plunk the boys down while I try and get a bottle into the warmer and make that cup of tea that I never get to finish. They hang out in it and watch some Daniel Tiger's Neighbourhood (the new Mr. Rogers Neighbourhood for those of you without kids) and usually one patiently waits while the other gets fed, then the fed one naps while the second is getting fed. I usually leave it on the floor as its low profile makes me comfortable not having to strap them in as they don't move around much at this point.

Now on to its flaws as I think it has many. First, it comes with two cotton seat cushions and they have many patterns to choose from. However we all know poop explosions happen and since that first wash the seat covers haven't been the same since, in fact they've been getting smaller with each wash/dry. I'll insert pictures at the bottom of this post but you can see the boys getting bigger and the cushions getting smaller. What's the good of the seat cushions if I have to wait for them to air dry – do you have any idea how many washes these things have had? They'd spend more time trying to dry than actually being used. You can buy replacement cushions but due to my next negative I've decided not to. Negative number two is the white cover. You can spot clean this but its advised not to as you'll never get it back on over the foam shape of the seat (I can say this is a true claim as I've tried). Lets be honest, if it had a cover that I could easily take off and throw in the wash it would be a million times more helpful. I have a few loads of laundry for the boys each week anyhow so what's another item. And when do I have time to be "spot cleaning" anyhow?!?!?! Because of these two negatives I keep a blanket laid over it to provide some extra comfort and that I can just throw in the wash when necessary. It has safety straps to keep the kids in place, but because of the blanket I can't get at the straps. The straps are fed through the foam of the seat so if you have a blowout you can unzip the cover and remove them to be cleaned but you'll never get them fed back through the dense foam that makes up the seat (again, believe me, I've tried). It has armrests between the boys feet which are supposed to alleviate strain on your body but no mater if they are on the floor, the coffee table or the kitchen table I still find myself hunched over a bit to reach them. Bottle holders which are a nice bonus but not necessary. OK now I'm just being nit-picky but these are just my honest thoughts.

Overall I do really love using this chair but clearly a 2.0 version could have a few upgrades. As mentioned this was gifted to us and I can't imagine our day to day without it. But knowing what I now know would I purchase it for myself?? If I could get it second hand (which isn't likely) I definitely would get it, but would certainly struggle paying full price for it (especially in American dollars).

C.

Month one with Charlie trying to get some attention:

May 2017: the first time I fed them at the same time. Notice in the next picture the cushion getting smaller…

Cut to July 2017 and you can see a bigger difference in the cushion:

Missing my old life

Recently I took the boys downtown to visit my old workplace. It was really nice to see my old friends and have them fawn over the boys. But to be totally honest, it sent me into a bit of a funk for a few days. I knew who I was and was confident in how to live in that space for the last 10 years. It was a real awakening to come home and realize I still need to adjust to being a mom, which I have no idea how to navigate. I'm totally faking it and the boys are still alive so whatever I'm doing is working but still.

I miss aspects of my pre-parent life. Late at night when I'm exhausted and I have to do yet another round of feeds but would rather fall into bed, into a deep, undisturbed slumber. Talking to adults on a daily basis. Being able to just run out the door to run errands, hang out with my friends or just waste time. Having the time to write blog posts (although in all fairness being a parent is what pushed me to start writing). Missing the stimulation of learning and navigating the challenges of my corporate career. Enjoying a full cup of warm tea right down to the last drop. Skipping the chores for a lengthy nap on the weekends. I could list a million things I really miss here.

Financially we've decided it makes no sense for me to go back to work when my mat leave is over as I would just be working to pay for daycare for the twins (childcare in this city is OUTRAGEOUS!!!) so I guess I'm still coming to grips with becoming a SAHM. Sure I might be able to find some part time work that offsets G's shifts but it wont be the Monday to Friday, 9-5 plus commute life that I was used to. It wont be the paycheque that I'm used to… Now I'm working 24/7 and getting paid with shitty diapers, meltdowns and hopefully a good giggle and a smile. That kind of pay doesn't pay the bills though.

Sure being a twin mom is uber challenging and I'm not going to sugar coat it and say I haven't thought "man what I wouldn't do for just 10 minutes of how it used to be". But then, there are two things, beings, that I wouldn't trade just to have my old life back. A&Q. The challenges of maintaining a routine in our daily life that we all face together each day. Seeing them hit their milestones in real time, watching them grow and their personalities becoming more defined. No way, I wouldn't trade being a mom for anything in the world. The rest will just have to sort itself out somehow.

C.

Item review: Pampers vs. Huggies 

Now I know there are a lot of other brands out there but let's be honest, these two are the reigning kings of the diaper companies. I remember seeing ads when I was growing up and thinking "who cares, they all collect crap, I'm sure they're all the same". Well now that I've been through countless boxes of diapers, I can definitely say, without a doubt that one is better than the other. 

When the boys were born and in the newborn size my preference was for huggies. They fit their small frame quite perfectly. When we moved up to size one, Huggies was still our diaper of choice. Check in four months later and pampers are our current preferred diaper of choice. I say "current" as this may change again next week.

Right now we use the baby dry as the boys are sleeping (mostly) through the night and these seem to capture all that pee without any leaks. And, sorry Huggies, but when we deal with blowouts, they're usually wearing the snugglers. I'm still going through the supply that was given to us and if they're free and even somewhat collect shit, I'm going to use them!!!

But I will give Huggies this one – their wipes are awesome! While the pampers wipes are nice and soft, I find they dry out too quickly and I have to constantly turn the case over so the liquid doesn't collect in the bottom of the container, soaking the bottom wipes but drying out what's on top of the pile. The huggies wipes are not as soft to the touch, a bit stiffer, but they have enough liquid in them that all of the wipes stay wet from the top of the pack to the bottom.

So parents, what do you think? Which is your favourite diaper?

Below is a shot of Fozzy and Charlie when I was close to the end of my pregnancy with a stash that was gifted to us (thank you in-laws).

C.