Saturday, June 28, 2008

Something to Look Back and Laugh About...

Guess what Paprika did today?

I walked out onto the front patio to fill up her baby pool, and she closed the front door and deadbolted the door behind me. I had my cell phone on me (thank goodness) but I could NOT get her to open the door.

It was actually a deadbolt that we lost the key to a long time ago (we have two deadbolts)- and so we never use it. So, it's not like Mr. Mustard could even come home and open the door. The door down to the garage was also deadbolted, and the garage door was closed (and I didn't have an opener with me anyway)...

So I called a locksmith and they said that no locksmith would come out to unlock the door due to liability issues...

So then I called the fire department and they sent three guys out in a big firetruck and they busted open the lock with a crowbar.

She was playing happily inside like nothing had happened- except she had taken off her shorts and diaper and was sitting there just in her T-shirt. When the firemen walked in, she looked at them (with her bare butt hanging out) and said, "Hey guys!!!"

We all burst out laughing. Forget looking back and laughing- we already are. :-)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Big Ultrasound Today!

The appointment went very well. They are definitely identical and share one placenta. So far there are no placental issues- both babies are relatively the same size (Baby A is 7 oz., Baby B is 6 oz.) The doctor said that I am going to be monitored VERY closely from now on, and will be seeing him or the perinatologist every two weeks- so I see the perinatologist next, then my doc, etc. which is good news.

He said I will LIKELY go on bedrest, and that I will probably need to cancel my travel plans (we had scheduled a vacation in early August to Florida, Indiana, and Chicago). That was a bummer to hear, but I sort of expected it. I have already been having a lot of pressure, backache, stomach tightening, etc.- and those are signs I need to take it easier than I have been- so a cross country trek is probably not a great idea (although maybe things will change by August- hopefully they will!)

Good news is that right now my cervix is long and closed- yea! and babies appear to both be doing well.

The tech was not great at getting pictures- she got one of baby B (upside down) and one of Baby A (which is a good profile)- but NO other shots...I wasn't really focused on the pictures, though because I was too busy asking her a million questions related to the ultrasound (like cord placement, doppler flow, how many vessels going into the placenta, etc.)

Baby A:

Baby B:

Afterwards I had a GREAT lunch with Lauren at Urth Cafe on Melrose. It was so wonderful catching up with her! Pat watched Paprika and they had a wonderful time together. That made me feel good.

So, that's all the news that's fit to print today! A great day overall! We have so much for which to be grateful. Smiles all around!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Pregnancy Updates!

Taken at 16 weeks, 3 days pregnant:

I am now in the second trimester, and am 16 weeks 4 days along. I am still REALLY sick a lot of the time, but I hear that's normal for twins. I have morning sickness all the time, so much so that Paprika has started to imitate me throwing up.

I am getting out a lot with Paprika, because she needs to get out of the house. We're going to indoor places and outdoor places with shade and water (she does not like the heat, either)- so that is helping. The tricky part is that Paprika is going through a phase where she wants to be carried, or picked up ALL THE TIME. So, that's a bit rough because she weighs almost 30 pounds, and carrying around 30 pounds on your hip is not something you want to do pregnant! But I'm just soldiering on with it, and trying my best to balance it all.

I go for my check-up on Thurday, and we will have an ultrasound. Perhaps we will find out the gender of the twins. I am not concerned about what we're having- I just want them both to be healthy. I just really hope everything is okay. I get really nervous before every appointment and this time is no different. So, hopefully things will be great at the appointment and I can exhale a little bit.

As far as cravings- I'm still eating a lot of protein, and not craving any sweets. I'm not quite as hungry as I was in the first trimester, but I'm still eating a great deal (about 3500 to 4000 calories/day). If I don't eat a meal every two to three hours, I get very dizzy and feel like I'm going to pass out. So, I make sure I eat! :-)

Staying Cool!

We had a VERY hot weekend- temps were in the 100s. We stayed home (mostly) and kept cool in Paprika's kiddie pool. She had a blast!

Mr. Mustard and I have found a fantastic babysitter- she's only here for the summer (home from college)- but we finally have our Saturday night dates back! Paprika thinks she's tops and had a wonderful time playing with her for a few hours while Mr. Mustard and I snuck away for dinner and a movie. Our first night out (two weeks ago), we went to Sushi Roku and had a luxurious meal and then went to Barnes and Noble and read books together. This past weekend we hit El Cholo for Mexican food, and then went to see Indiana Jones (since Mr. Mustard hadn't seen it yet). It was great to have that time together, and Paprika did not miss us one bit. We missed her, though. Even when I'm only away from Paprika for a few hours, I really really miss her. But, I think it's important to have alone time as a couple every once in awhile. These past two Saturdays we've had a date night, but prior to that it had been many, many, many months since we'd had an evening out together. So, it was time!

I am with Paprika from the time she wakes up in the morning til the time she goes to bed, every single day! Ann says that Paprika thinks of me like a refrigerator- always there when you need it, and when it goes away, you really miss it- but when it's there it's just there! I think that's sort of a good analogy. Paprika definitely notices when I'm gone, but as long as I'm within eyeshot, she's comfortable to explore and do her own independent thing.

I can't get enough of Paprika, of course, and think everything she does is the most miraculous thing EVER! Maybe I am biased, a bit? No! :-)

On Sunday we went to Matt and Juliane's housewarming party in Burbank. It was great to see everyone and catch up. Paprika had a wonderful time exploring the house and did not want to leave (of course)!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Exciting News!

Things have been really exciting around our house lately!

First, I am happy to announce that the book I wrote with Jessica has been picked up by a major publisher! We get our own editor, a cover designer, marketing muscle, not to mention an advance and royalties! And the best part is, the publisher is paying for everything. The book should be out by September of 2008, making it my second book to be published in less than a year. :-)

Mr. Mustard has been offered his dream job (well, one of his dream jobs!). He is going to be editing the pilot of Top Gear, which is a British show they're bringing to the US. He LOVES the British show and is very excited to work on the American version. He starts July 1 and is thrilled!

Finally, I found Paprika a fantastic preschool starting in September. It's very flexible, close to our house, has an awesome program, and I know she'll just love it. It's for three hours in the morning, and if that's too much time for her, I can always pick her up early or take her out of the program. I think it's going to work out GREAT, though. I will be going to doctor's appointments ALL THE TIME by then, and instead of carting her along and having her be miserable at my appointments, she'll get to have fun and I'll get to have a peaceful doctor's visit! Best of both worlds. Yea!!!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Summertime Updates

Summer is in full swing now. It has been HOT! Yesterday the thermometer at the local highschool showed a temperature of 100 degrees! That was pretty shocking to see. I saw the temperature reading on my way to the gas station to fill up the tank. I was again shocked to see that gas was $4.96/gallon! Needless to say, we're keeping our activities indoors (where it's cool) and close to home (so we don't have to drive very far)!

Sunday was Father's Day and Mr. Mustard got big presents and cards from me and Paprika. Paprika got her daddy a bunch of books about Fathers and Daugthers for them to read together. I got Mr. Mustard a bunch of car stuff, which he seemed to really like! We spent the day together and went to the Chalk Festival in Pasadena. It's our second year going, and Paprika seemed to like it. There was a helicopter that took off from the square, and she REALLY liked that. Paprika's favorite things right now are helicopters and dinosaurs. She would have been even more impressed if there had been a real dinosaur at the event, but alas, there wasn't.

Paprika is not a fan of the heat. She is like Mr. Mustard and enjoys temperatures no higher than 75 degrees. We stayed at the Chalk Festival a little while, but then she just got too hot and we decided to come home!

Friday, June 13, 2008

14 weeks!

Last night, Mr. Mustard took this picture of me at 14 weeks, 5 days pregnant. I don't think I'm much bigger than last week. But, still, for being in the beginning of the second trimester, my tum-tum is HUGE! I guess that's what happens when there are two babies growing and stretching their bodies!

As far as cravings and things like that, I really have only been craving basic, healthy foods. I eat ALOT of protein, dairy, fruit, and veggies. I would rather eat broccoli than chocolate. I cannot tell you how unlike me that is! When I was pregnant with Paprika, I HAD to eat ice cream every night (or almost every night). But now the thought of sugar just makes me ill. I hope I am not jinxing myself by saying that all I want are healthy foods. Because, I would LOVE for this trend to last forever.

So yes, I'm not eating or craving any sugar. Just a lot of protein: red meat, chicken, and dairy. Lots of veggies: corn, broccoli, carrots, tomatoes (before the salmonella scare started, that is). Lots of fruit: raspberries, strawberries, peaches, blueberries.

I've gained 21 pounds so far! Eeek! I don't know how that's possible, but the scale doesn't lie. I will probably gain 70-80 this pregnancy again, just like with Paprika. But that's okay, she turned out great and I'm glad I pumped her full of lots of yummy nutrients in utero. I'm sure having three kids ages two and under will whip me back into shape in no time after the twins are born!

Our Pool!

Yesterday we had GREAT fun playing in Paprika's pool and drawing with sidewalk chalk on our front porch. I had to partially deflate the top two tiers of the pool because the sides were too tall for Paprika to get in and out of the pool comfortably. I chose the pool because it was the only model that had a nice, thick, padded floor. So, the fact that it's a little too tall is okay. She had a wonderful time splashing and playing with toys. After she was done, she drew all over our patio with sidewalk chalk. It was a wonderful, simple, fun day at home!

A few highlights:

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Cooper's Birthday Party

Cooper turned 2 on Saturday and his parents threw him a GREAT birthday party!

Here are a few pics from the event:

Paprika making a curious face on top of the jungle gym:

Having Fun With Play-Doh:

Erika 14 weeks (on the dot) pregnant:

Gone Fishin':


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Quick Update!

I'm upstairs blogging on the laptop, so I don't have access to the pictures (which are on our downstairs computer). Words will have to suffice for now.

We had a great weekend- went to Cooper's second birthday party. It was great fun- a little more low-key than last year (but not much). There was a great big bouncy, and Paprika had a wonderful time in it. They also had a small pool to "catch fish" - and after watching the older kids dunk themselves in the pool, Paprika did the same. She ended up soaked head to toe for the rest of the party, but still managed to have a great time.

Elizabeth (mom to Paprika's best friend, Isabella) is going to be moving soon. They put their townhouse on the market and will be moving back to the South. I am SO bummed about it because I really like Elizabeth so much and enjoy hanging out with her and getting the girls together. She parents in the same way I do and I really value her friendship and advice. So, that will be tough.

Everyone keeps telling Mr. Mustard and me that we need to "find help" for when the twins are born and for later on in my pregnancy. Good advice, for sure. But it's "us" and if you know "us"- you know how hard it is for us to accept help from anyone. We are both very much "do it yourself" type people- I mean, I would not even take a Bar Exam prep course because I needed to "do it myself." I didn't take an LSAT prep course either. I like to do everything myself- my way- even when it ends up disastrous, like dyeing my own hair and having it turn orange.

Mr. Mustard is perhaps worse than me. I suggested that for my Mother's Day present that we hire someone to come in once every two weeks to clean our kitchen and bathrooms. Mr. Mustard refuses. He says he will do it himself before he'll hire someone. I think there's a word for this- stubborn, perhaps. I realize that our defenses will need to be broken down a bit and some things will need to change. But we are hard people to change!

I see this stubborn personality trait in Paprika. She does NOT want to be held. She wants to walk on her own, and walk where she wants to go. She wants to do everything herself with no help from anyone else, thank you very much. Part of parenting Paprika involves finding ways to make things seem like her decision when they are really what's best for her. She likes to make her own decisions, and will not be told what she cannot do. I see this all the time at the playground. She will see something that the older kids are afraid to do, or that someone says is "too big" for Paprika. She will tackle that thing like nobody's business and will not stop until she's scaled whatever seemingly insurmountable obstacle is before her.

Just last week we were at the indoor playground and Paprika was showing a 3 year old how to climb this impossibly tall slide that the 3 year old was afraid to climb. Paprika climbed right up to the top, slid down, and then climbed up again. The grandparents of the 3 year old were marvelling at Paprika, saying they had never seen anyone like her before. Before the end of the day, Paprika was trying to help push the 3 year old up the slide. It was a hoot!

Needless to say, we are all stubborn and I'm not sure what we're going to do about it.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Fun at the Children's Museum!

Today we went to our local Children's Museum. We have been there a few times before, including last week when Sarah and Zane were visiting. Paprika's favorite thing to do at the museum is painting and drawing with chalk. The best part is that when she paints at the Children's Museum, I don't have to clean up! At home, we've mostly been sticking to drawing with crayons, so getting to run wild with paint is a pretty fun adventure.

Paprika at her "easel" (water washes over it every few minutes-very convenient!):

They had this really neat product called Floam at the museum today, and Paprika loved making it into scultpures and feeling it between her fingers. It's like foam, but it's made up of tiny balls that stick together. Pretty cool!

Paprika with the Floam:

There are lots of fun water activities, but today Paprika did NOT want to get wet, despite the fact that it was very hot outside. She did, however, enjoy splashing her hands in the sink and getting clean when she was finished with her art projects!

Cleaning Up:

Thursday, June 5, 2008

13 Weeks Pregnant

Here are my latest belly pictures, taken on Monday night at 13 weeks, 2 days!

It's pretty amazing to me how much BIGGER my belly is this pregnancy, compared to how big I was during Paprika's pregnancy. I've been reading that the uterus is 6 to 8 weeks ahead when carrying twins, and I believe it. For comparison, here is a pic of me pregnant with Paprika at 18 weeks 1 day and one at 23 weeks:

Pregnant with Paprika (2006) - 18 weeks, one day:

Pregnant with Paprika (2006) - 23 weeks pregnant:

When I was 13 weeks pregnant with Paprika, I wasn't even showing! I am definitely showing now and wondering how big I will get!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Newest Project

My newest project is the scanning and archiving of all of my mom's photo albums. It's a big project, but a lot of fun. I am putting all the photos into acid-free archival quality photo albums and scanning all the photos so we have a digital record of them. Every spare second I get, I'm either scanning, cropping in Photoshop, or putting pictures into albums. Lately my time has been really limited because all I have are the few moments when Paprika goes down for her nap. And those naps are dwindling by the day. I love having Mr. Mustard home, of course, but when he was gone, I had my lonely evenings with nothing to do but scan. Now that he's home we want to spend time together, of course, so it's more difficult to squeeze in my scanning time!

It's been really interesting to see the family resemblance between my grandma, my mom, me, and Paprika.

Here are a few highlights:

Me, Age 1:

Me (in the pink sleeper):

Me, age 2, with my mom:

My mom, age 1:

My mom, age 1, with my grandma:

My grandma: