Summer

 

I can’t believe summer is ending!  Like always we have been busy, but having the girls so much more active makes each day better than the one before.  These two love the water and have absolutely no fear!  We’ve spent a lot of nights in the pool swimming once Jay gets home from work.

Anyway, here are a bunch of pictures from the past couple months with these silly coconuts.  They are forever dancing, hitting each other with books, and climbing on everything…love them!

 

 

Coffee talk

About a month ago, maybe longer now, I started finding the girls on the stairs together having a chat.  They weren’t climbing, just sitting down (normally with a snack) gossiping to each other.  I have only recorded a few of the many, but I thought you guys might like to see.  It’s so special having the two of them, and definitely unlike any other experience seeing them interact everyday…I can’t imagine life any other way!

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Girls first birthday party

It’s still hard to believe that the girls are already 1! They have grown so much, especially in the past few months, and are so much fun to be around.  The most amazing part is how different they are from one another.  Each with their own likes and dislikes, even what they laugh at and how they laugh at it is different.  They are my favorite people to be around, and I don’t think that will ever change.

We had a pretty big birthday party for them at the house, which was a lot of fun, but something I don’t think we need to do again until they are 16!  A few days before the party the weather report said it was going to hail (yea, in July!), so needless to say, I was a maniac.  But it all ended up working out.  A big thank you to everyone who came and has given us so much love and support this past year.  We definitely needed the extra hands and we love you all!  Here are some pictures from the big day…

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Carousel

A little while back we spent a week visiting my parents in NJ, and man, the girls had fun.  We went to the aquarium, the beach, saw friends, and by far their favorite part was going to the carousel.  They loved it so much they both cried the second it stopped!  I’m a sucker and my Mom is an even bigger one, so of course, we went around again.

The last 3 pictures are my favorites!  The evolution of Ev deciding she loved it.  She was so unsure at first, and then after a minute she realized she kinda liked it, and by the end she was dancing on the seat and we had to hold her in place!

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(V)

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(V when it stopped for the first time about to lose it)IMG_1464
(Not sure yet)IMG_1467
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(yea this is great)

❤ J

 

We changed our name!

Hi all!  It has been quite a while, which is something I plan on changing.  First change though is the name!  Since we are definitely no longer a family of 3, I thought it was time to update the name (yes, a year late) to reflect that.  The new domain is forEVR and always, which of course is for Everly, Vanessa, and Rondo!  Going to rondotakesbrooklyn.com will still work for a while, but starting in 2017, to keep updated go directly to

FOREVRANDALWAYS.com

I have a bunch of posts from the past 4 months or so I am going to get to in the coming weeks!  Until then here’s V in a box and E in a bag…crazy coconuts!

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❤ J

Traveling with the girls

Well, we did it!  We traveled with the girls! We were both nervous about different aspects of the traveling, but we made it through and they were rock stars.  Our way home was initially delayed an hour, then after boarding we sat on the plane for another 2+ hours.  All I have to say is, thank goodness I was nutty about over-packing because we ending up using everything I packed in our carry on (thank you Vanessa for pooping 3x in an hour).

There were a few moments of fussing but (thankfully) nothing that couldn’t be solved by a toy/cracker/rest.  They slept through takeoff on the way there, Vanessa thought the turbulence was funny, and they seemed to handle the delays and ear popping better than both Jay and I.

I thought I would share our lifesavers on the flight for anyone interested.  We were really lucky they went with the flow and napped, but for those upset moments here are the things that saved us (times 2)…

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  1. Before we had the girls I thought Sophie was pretty ridiculous.  It’s kind of an expensive toy, and it doesn’t do anything but squeak…it looks like something I would buy Rondo for $3.  Well, I was past wrong.  Sophie is the greatest toy ever and whenever someone starts to whine it’s Soph to the rescue.  We have a set in the house and one for on the go…not kidding.  Same goes for their Wubanubs.
  2. These Little Yums wafers are their favorite.  They have a bunch of different flavors (blueberry, kale, banana) and the girls love them all.  They can eat them independently without me having to watch them like a maniac (like when I give them puffs), they get to use their hands which keeps them busy, and they help soothe their gums.  We must have gone through 3 packs each flight.
  3. Jay got me this Kate Spade bag for Christmas.  It has a pocket for everything, comes with a changing mat, and doesn’t look like a diaper bag (I don’t think I could handle walking around with a traditional diaper bag with some horrible pattern on it).
  4. These silly keychains were the star of the show.  My aunt got them for the girls and they hadn’t really played with them until the flight, but man, they were snatching the pink one out of each others hands and chewing it like crazy.  I guess the lesson here is, bring things they haven’t played with before because new is good, and who knows what they are going to love that day!
  5. All hail HBO go with Sesame Street.  There’s nothing more to say on that.
  6. We got these Snap N Go strollers for the airport so we could each handle one baby instead of having the huge double stroller that puts all the work on one person.  They couldn’t have worked out better.  They are super light, fold up so simple, don’t have a million unnecessary bells and whistles, and could easily be checked at the gate with our car seats.  A great purchase.

God speed to everyone traveling with a baby, it’s no joke!

xo -J

Florida

We were lucky enough to spend this past week in Florida with Jay’s family!  We went to the ocean, swam in the pool, went on walks and bike rides, were able to go out to dinner (a few times without the girls!), we got to go to the movies, and most importantly spend time with everyone all together.

Here are some pictures from the trip, more on traveling with the tiny monsters next week…

DSC_0898(girls first time seeing the ocean)

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DSC_0882DSC_0911(i love this one so much)

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DSC_1000(what twin life is really like…trying to make one happy while the other one eats my hair)

DSC_1051(these are the first onesies i bought them when i found out they were girls)

DSC_0924(love that boy)

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DSC_0967(the high chairs we rented were HUGE, made E look super tiny)

xo-j

Bringing the girls into the world…

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I want to start this off by saying, the girls birth was not magical. I wouldn’t even say seeing them for the first time was (especially since that was at 2am, on drugs, while Jay was in the NICU facetiming me). But I’m getting ahead of myself. Now that we are out of the woods, and all of this feels like a distant memory, I thought I would share our birth story…

We found out we were having twins at my first doctor’s appointment. I was 8 weeks along and there they were, two little black dots. I had no idea what the nurse was showing me, and was in shock for probably a full 2 weeks after. If you google anything about early twin pregnancy (don’t!) it basically says you will be lucky if they make it and one will probably disappear, it’s terrifying. But we made it! I wasn’t sick, I was tired, but otherwise feeling really great. There were some weird pregnancy things going on, but nothing alarming or really that odd.

Since there were two, we had to go into Boston (an hour with traffic) every week for an ultrasound and appointment with the high risk office. This was intense, and each week brought with it a new worry. Everly (Baby 1 at the time) was smaller, significantly. But each week they grew, and even if it was only a little, everyone was growing! Then at week 32, my blood pressure started creeping up, slowly but surely. The doctor sent me home to do a 24 hour urine test starting Tuesday morning.

So here I am, collecting all this pee (gross sorry!), and starting to feel, just, off. When we first found out about there being two, the biggest worry I had was how could my body do it? I couldn’t imagine sustaining one baby let alone two in my body. And at 33 weeks pregnant, HUGE (everything was huge, my legs, ankles, face…everything), I finally was feeling that my body couldn’t do this much longer.

Right, so it is now Wednesday morning, and it is my last collection of the 24 hours around 6am. I go downstairs, do my thing, and come back up to get in bed for a little bit. I sit down in bed and Bam(!), I think my bladder has finally had it with the pressure, but no, after about 10 seconds I realize it’s my water breaking. So of course I scream “JAY!”. I call the doctor, email my boss, call my parents, and we are off to the hospital to see what is going on.

When we get to the hospital, I got checked in and immediately my blood pressure was being monitored…and it was high, and going up. At this point all the doctors (and their teams of students, so many people constantly in my room) weren’t sure if I was even going to deliver that day, and with the girls being only 33 weeks they wanted to keep them in as long as possible. After a move upstairs to L&D, and a quick blood test, they were positive, the babies were coming that day.

I started having contractions (which were horrible, of course) and then at 3:00pm we were on our way to have the c-section. The c-section was probably the easiest part of all of this. You can’t feel a thing, except some bizarre tugging, plus there are doctors all over telling you everything is going great. And then, 3:26 there comes Baby 1, and 3:27 Baby 2. Everyone kept asking us their names and we had no idea still (at this point they were potentially Penelope and Beatrix. for real.).IMG_6536

The girls each had their own team of pediatricians and nurses in the delivery room, and I only saw them for less than 1 second before they were rushed off and down to the NICU. In the meantime, I am getting put back together while trying to figure out names with Jay. I’m so drugged up at this point I have no idea how bad the incisions were about to feel in a few hours.

When we get back to the L&D room, I was put on magnesium to make sure I didn’t have a stroke. My BP was 190/110, and all the doctors were calm but concerned. Anyone who has ever been on magnesium knows what this is like, but it is the absolute worst. It gets worse the longer you are on it, and feels like the most horrible hangover ever. You can’t see straight or focus, your head feels like a million pounds, and nothing is exactly clear that is going on around you. On top of all this there are teams of doctors coming in and out, my bp being constantly monitored, the pain medication they gave me didn’t work (thank god for the nurse who finally got the doctor to give me something different), and worst of all, worse than any pain or fear of what was going on with my body was, I couldn’t see the girls.

Finally sometime in the middle of the night Jay was able to go down to the NICU and facetime me so I could see our, still nameless, babies (the names were finally decided sometime in the middle of the night). And then around 3am, I was brought down to the NICU to see my little babies (only 3lbs) in containers where I could only touch there little hands for a second through a hole.

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The days that followed were equally as intense. My BP wasn’t dropping so I was put on round the clock medications and IVs. I was draining all the fluid from my body (10 liters in 12 hours), I had to pump every 3 hours to send whatever I could get down to the NICU for the girls, and I couldn’t sit/stand/walk for days.

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We did manage to get down to the NICU each day to see the girls, which had its own difficulties. I wanted to be with them so badly, to have them in my room, to breastfeed them like everyone else gets to with their newborns, but none of that was going to be our experience.

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After my hospital stay it wasn’t much easier at home. I had to have visiting nurse service come every day to take my BP. I was re-admitted to the hospital after being home for 4 days for my eclampsia on the same day the girls were scheduled to be transferred to a hospital closer to our new house (yea, we moved 3 weeks before this!). But without fail, Jay and I got up and drove 45 minutes to the NICU to see those girls each and every day.

At this point I was still on a ton of medication…pain meds, 3 blood pressure meds, and meds to drain the fluid. And of course, waking up every 3 hours still to pump. Each day I would have a mini (yea, not mini, massive) breakdown about not having the girls home. Not having them with us was so difficult and went against every single instinct my body was telling me.

The NICU though, was amazing. The care and compassion of the nurses there is an experience that can’t be matched. They walked us through everything, took the best care of our girls, gave us reports every day on the phone before we came in, and constantly made us feel we were doing the best job we could. When the girls were first brought down to the NICU we were told they most likely would be there until their true due date (8/22) which would be almost 2 months later….

But those babie are troopers! After a little over 3 weeks, we had Vanessa home, and a few days later we had Everly (she had to get to 4lbs). Not to say everything was a walk in the park, but having them home with us was so exciting I didn’t mind any of it. The girls were on a 3 hour schedule and since they were so small that meant waking them in the middle of the night (3,6,9,12,3,6,9,12 – all day everyday) to eat.

Meanwhile, my bp was still pretty crazy. I had doctors’ appointments constantly to check it and was on medication until just a few weeks ago! I still have to home monitor, but it is nothing like it was in the beginning, and neither are those babies! When the girls came home, all skin and bones, it was hard to imagine them getting bigger or filling out…and now, 6 months later, we have two growing, thriving, giggly, rolling, happy babies, who are the greatest people I’ve ever met.

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We have pictures of them from the NICU on the fridge that both Jay and I look at in disbelief of who they were when they came into this world, and the circumstances we all found ourselves in. I think the thing I feel most looking at those pictures is thankful. Thankful for Jay who was there for me in ways I couldn’t imagine needing him, thankful for the doctors who took care of not only my girls but me, thankful for our family who was there for both of us, and mostly thankful to see those little faces every day home, healthy, and loved.

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Xo – J

6 months

Well, as you can imagine life has been a bit crazy here, doesn’t allow for to much blogging (or anything) time!  In a few short days our girls are going to be 6 months old, and I’m truly not sure how that happened.  Everyone says time flies, but it really has…not to say there weren’t some long days…such long days (like when our ac broke and we were sleeping on our living room floor right after coming home from the hospital, healing from my surgery, all crazed up on blood pressure meds, and driving an hour+ each way everyday to see our girls for 3 weeks…but those are all their own separate stories).

V & E grow every single day, they are rolling, laughing, grabbing, eating, and constantly wanting to play and snuggle.  I don’t think anything could have prepared me for the amount of insane love I could have for not one, but two people.  These past 6 months have been the most insane, complicated, tiring, and fantastic of my life. So here are some of my favorites from these past few months, I can’t wait to see what is coming next. 

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xo-J