Saturday, 24 November 2012

Hunkering down

It's chucking down outside and blowing a gale as I type this. The leaves are mostly all off the trees and clumping themselves in unsightly damp piles all over the garden, which needs a thorough sorting out before the winter months really kick in. I'm sure it should definitely be mulled wine season pretty damn soon. So before we get too entrenched in the gloom and energised by festive preparations, Martha and Tamsyn's 10 month birthday seems a good point to jot down a few, erm, jottings.
first time in the bath together!

 Since I last posted they have obviously developed loads, so much so that I hope I don't miss anything out! Both are now very active - Martha, who started rolling at about 5 months, has not moved on much although can now do a commando style crawl to inch by inch get to that toy she's desperate to gum on. She's pretty stable at sitting now too. And last weekend Granny Linda taught her how to clap which is very adorable to watch! Tamsyn was a late roller but once she got the hang of it she was off all over the place. She sat stably earlier than Martha and started crawling backwards at about 8 months, now can commando crawl and get to sitting from lying down, and has in the last few days just about got the hang of proper crawling forwards. She's not a clapper though.

cheeky Martha

They are both into everything. Gemma never seemed bothered about getting into dangerous places, tight corners, dangling cables, underneath the sofa / bookcase / table etc but these two are both menaces. Our blase "we probably don't need to childproof anything" attitude has become a bit more along the lines of "we really need to move those surround sound speakers before they get broken"... Tamsyn loves to be near the radiator or underneath the sofa. Martha likes to grab at stuff, so laptop cables, our specs etc are all fair game.

I haven't had them weighed since they were about 6 and a half months, and just established on solid food. Martha was still on 9th centile at that point but bruiser Tamsyn, who wasn't moving about much then, had jumped from 25th to between 50th and 75th. I think she has probably come down again now and both seem chubby enough though Martha is still the petite one.

Tamsyn has the only 2 teeth (bottom) between the two of them that she cut at 7 months. Martha goes through dribbly hand munching stages and you can just see a hint of her bottom teeth underneath the gum but so far nothing. I wish they'd get a move on.

Their eating patterns are fairly well established now. They both eat well, though neither is a big fan of fish and Tamsyn seems to hate anything with obvious lumpy bits like rice or bigger bits of pasta. She's also got an incredibly annoying habit of spitting straight out again whatever spoonful of food you manage to get in but will always, surprise surprise, eat pudding. Martha is easy to please and eats anything if she's hungry. They both do finger food ok, both like Marmite (hooray!) and Martha loves to chomp on bits of veg such as  broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage etc. They are on 2 'official' breastfeeds a day - early morning and bedtime. Early morning can mean 5am though :( and over the last few months I have fed at quite a few other times in addition. Neither twin is taking to formula out of a cup well at all and neither will do bottles. I am persevering with a mid afternoon cup of milk but hardly any gets drunk.

Both went through some kind of developmental / growth spurt between 7.5 and 9.5 months. With Tamsyn she just started to wake very early in the mornings - some days 4am but mostly around 5ish. With Martha it was a whole lot worse - she was waking anything from 1-4 times a night and not settling to sleep again without a breastfeed. During the day she was as happy as could be, daytime naps were always fine, but at night the demons came out and she was very difficult for a while. She then seemed to slowly be coming out of it, had a few good nights in a row, and BAM we got hit with bronchiolitis last week. Cue high temperatures, streaming cold symptoms, hacking cough and most worryingly, fast shallow breathing with a very crackly chest. Martha had it first - so any sleep improvement went straight out of the window. Then as it's contagious, Tamsyn got it too and is currently in the middle of it. One day I will sleep again. One day... Luckily both ate and drank well all through being ill, so no major cause for concern other than 2 massively grumpy babies day and night.

Swimming has been appalling. Both have separation anxiety so will not go to the other instructor in the pool without screaming. Generally most classes are a cacophony of twin yells. However if one is ill and I manage to get to the class with just the other, it goes ok, they are both good little swimmers and it's not the water they dislike, just being away from me. Fingers crossed time will sort this out.

our big girl
Speaking of time, it is a mere few weeks until I am back at work, 3 days a week from January 2nd until Easter and 4 days after then. We have hired a nanny, Liz, who will come here Monday - Thursday to look after the twins and Gemma, and (most excitingly from my perspective) do all their laundry!! and lots of other stuff too obviously. Gemma is in preschool sessions on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday afternoons at Wantage C of E primary school, and still goes to the Oxfam nursery all day on Mondays and Thursdays. She has developed too over the last 3 or 4 months, not only in her growth (she now looks very grown up in a pair of skinny jeans and seems sooo big :( ) but also in her attitude and behaviour. Since about September she's become slightly less clingy and whiny when separated from me or in new situations, and the entry to preschool has actually gone amazingly well. She is sometimes a bit tearful at drop off but her enthusiasm is clear from her happy abundant energy when I pick her up. She is talking about some of her new friends there (she's been going 3 weeks now) and seems to be responding well to the staff. Her ability in reading, writing, and drawing is coming on fantastically, she can write her own full name as well as Mummy, Daddy, Ellen and a few other words, and if you spell other words out for her she writes those too. She's coming up to her 4th birthday and we are currently planning a party for her, though I am trying desperately to head off any princess theme...

among the flowers at Eden Project

Bit of a massive update this one, with 4 months to cram in. Hopefully the next one, likely to be at the first birthday, won't be quite as lengthy. Maybe we will one day get round to re-creating and loading up all the photos we've taken this year too! (the ones here were taken on a family holiday to Padstow in September - the twins were 8 months)