21 April Already – 2017

30 April 

West Country adventures 

On Saturday morning we drove out to John and Kait’s to attend George’s 4th birthday. John made an incredible Batman cake (and we discovered that the twins know who Batman is – but pronounce it Fat Man).

There was also a bouncy castle 

Susie and Clara were also there and spent the night. It was great seeing the twins interact with the slightly older kids (Clara is just 3). Sunday we had a fairly quiet day – and then Ben came for that evening as well. 

We went to a playground and Margot had a full on meltdown when it was time to leave. We are definitely witnessing the birth of a toddler. 

25 April 

Winning at parenting (by setting a low bar)

Running two full time jobs, and twins, is exhausting. I’m finding the only time I have to write updates is on my phone on the tube and that’s entirely contingent on getting a seat… 

Last week was another full on work week for me. I’m grateful for the hour I have with them in the morning otherwise I really wouldn’t see them till the weekend. 

Even with two incomes our finances have become precarious. While we can totally afford normal life there’s no longer any slack in the system for things like holidays or if fences break… so we have decided to rent the house out on Airbnb when we’re away (if possible). Last weekend we had people at the house but our cleaner wasn’t there… cue a total panic on Friday as I frantically try and get work done and also clean / change sheets etc.

We drove up to Birmingham to see Ed and Lorna, Toby (6) and Maddy and Ben (4 year old twins). We had a really good drive up on Friday night and the twins went down really well. 

One of the nice things about staying with people with lots of kids (particularly if they also have twins) is that nothing phases them. 

On Saturday we had a pretty slow start – but Ed & Lorna have essentially a playground in the back yard. Swings, climbing frame and slide. Isaac is an amazing climber! Before I knew what was happening he was all the way up and across the climbing frame (it’s about as high as my shoulders) … Margot was also keen though needed a bit more instruction on how to get across. True to form Isaac was a natural, but Margot has persistence and practice. Isaac continues to hate swings… 

we then took a picnic out to the Birmingham Botanic Gardens 

It was an amazing day and the kids wer able to just run around like maniacs

There was a play ground with a hugely tall slide. We could see parents of kids twice the twins’ age refusing to let their kids go up – but ours could not be deterred. 

When we got them home they were pretty tuckered out and went to bed without too much complaint.

Sunday morning I had the biggest parenting win: 

Margot came to me asking for her nappy to be changed. The changing things were three floors up. Patrick was upstairs having a lie down – but it was we clearly time for him to get up.

So I said: Margot, can you go upstairs and ask Daddy to change your nappy?

She thought for a minute and answered: yup! 

And then she actually did it!!!!

We drove back down to London and the twins slept all the way! 

We went to Claire’s to see what felt like the whole family in order to meet baby Sienna.

We headed back home and Patrick took the twins on a play date to Marty / Kerry and Hunter while I did a couple hours work. We then had dinner at their place, putting the twins down in their tents – then taking them home in the buggy. They slept perfectly through all of that. 

One thing I’ve noticed is that Isaac is a very sensitive soul. He gets very upset if you speak harshly to him or take something away from him. 

Margot has a certain righteous indignation that Isaac lacks. She gets angry and he gets hurt… 
18 April 

5 days of full time parenting …

Honestly, I don’t know how people do it. I love the twins but entertaining them for 5 days straight was a real challenge.

We had a nice time at Jon and Jo’s – long walks and playing with Arthur’s toys. In particular they were key on a toy bumble bee – or as Margot said ‘Bobby Bee’ 

On Saturday 15th (which just do happened to be the twins 22 month birthday) Maddy had her baby – Sienna Bette Egan. She was 8lb 3 and I can’t help but reflect that the twins were about 10 weeks old before they got to that size…

We went home early on Easter Sunday and had a pretty laid back day. Though we learned a valuable and painful lesson about getting Isaac to nap earlier rather than later… much tantruming.

Monday was much better. We played with their babies – Isaac said ‘I love baby’ – which sweet. 

We managed to have a 2 hour family nap on the sofa after bath time.

Then a trip to the park with Jack. Home for playtime and bed. All in all a really good day.

Isaac has been waking up and crying at about 4 am again. This morning I got him up before Margot – he was on great form. We had a really nice morning… and then we were all really relieved to go to nursery! 

This evening when Patrick picked them up there was a present from Granny! 2 ponchos and 2 sweaters. 

And then for the first time – as Patrick was going to bed they realised that the prints above their beds are of Rabbits! 

15 April

Easter weekend 

Last week the was incredibly long. I ended up working 14 hours on Tuesday and so by the time we got to Thursday I was inordinately glad for a break. 

The twins are still sleeping really well. Isaac wakes up and asks for Daddy, ‘ardigan and banana – in that order. 

On Thursday we went to the park to meet Baby Beatrice.

The twins were very keen. 

On Friday we went to the park to meet up with a work friend of mine who has a little boy (Adam) who’s 5 days younger than the twins.

Then we went to a petting zoo with Juliet and Iain. There were even Boy / Girl twin lambs called Bo and Peep.

We rode on a steam train! 

Margot was keen. 

Isaac not so much.

He basically screamed the whole way… poor thing! It’s always so random the things that one of them likes and other is terrified by.

They really loved the animals. Particularly the pigs! 

Then we came to Jon and Jo’s new house. We were driving along country lanes… Isaac wasn’t keen and as we drove into the driveway Isaac was sick EVERYWHERE. Our first experience of car sickness… fortunately because we were already at Jon and Jo’s we were able to clean him up pretty quickly. 

8 April 2017

The lost weekend 

Friday I went out with colleagues and fell asleep on the train back. I woke up at 2am in Hertford North. Luckily Juliet lives 20 minutes cab away so I woke her and Iain up… I passed out and then got the 7am train home. When I walked in the door Isaac ran up and said Mama!! I burst into exhausted hungover tears.

Saturday day Louise and Matt came round for lunch and we had a hilarious time with the twins on rare form. Then we went to Charlotte’s 30th at a very cool club in Hackney. It was too cool for us and we were home and in bed by midnight. Which was a good thing. 

Margot woke up calling for water at 6:30 – she had a 39 degree temperature and was clearly having trouble peeing. We gave her calpol and the temperature came down. She then wanted some breakfast and then I took her to A&E.

Once again very impressed with the NHS. We were seen immediately and given a prescription for antibiotics. 

That afternoon we went to neighbour’s for a day in the sun. It was unseasonably warm – and our neighbors have a pizza oven in the garden. Claire joined us and we had a really lovely time. Given how unwell Margot was she was on pretty good form. 

We also invented the S’more pizza. 

5 April 2017

Spring has arrived!

Last weekend saw what felt like the official end of winter. It was sunny and warm and we spent a lot of it in the garden.

 We are starting to notice some differentiation between the twins. We’ve always said they were very different in personality but as their language and physical confidence picks up those differences are getting clearer.

Isaac is physically more capable. He’s a little slimmer and very nimble. He is also completely obsessed with kicking a ball. On Saturday and Sunday we spent ages in the garden and he just kicked and kicked and kicked. When we took them in he kicked the ball around the kitchen which was slightly more fun as it bounced back at him. 

Margot on the other hand is totally disinterested in kicking the ball. She took great delight in stealing the ball and then just holding it. Isaac was not impresssd.

Patrick invented the game of baby croquet – swinging Margot around by the arms and using her to kick the ball to Isaac. Exhausting for everyone! 

On Saturday night we went to Danny and Katy’s for dinner. They have a metal duck Isaac became very fond of. 

We then remembered by cocktails are a terrible idea. Sunday was a long day. We made the mistake of taking the twins to a garden centre with soft play. We had over priced fish and chips, spent about 15-20 minutes in a giant hamster enclosure then left without buying any plants because we couldn’t make any decisions. When we got home in the afternoon the four of us just passed out on the sofa for about 2 hours. 

Their language is really picking up. Isaac has added the word astronaut to his repertoire. Margot is doing a lot of babbling – but like it’s a game for her mouth. She absolutely astonished us by singing back quite a complicated musical phrase. Twice. 

Isaac doesn’t have as many words as Margot but his comprehension seems clearer, so if you ask him a question he’ll give a real answer where as Margot is more likely to say the first word that pops into her head.

As we near the terrible twos I have to say I am enjoying this phase of parenthood the most.