Wednesday, July 1, 2009

9 months old & hoping for a speedy "recovery"

The girls turned nine months yesterday. The girls truly bring me the greatest joy my heart has ever known!!! They keep me VERY busy and it can be challenging sometimes when they both need something at the same time but I am doing my best and thankfully they have survived my mothering so far!! I enjoy watching them grow and do new things but at the same time I wonder where the days went of rocking them both for hours as they slept peacefully on my chest. The time has flown by and they are growing up so very fast! I can hardly keep them still these days ... they are crawling, pulling up, walking behind the push toys, digging in our cabinets etc. They have made me laugh so hard that I have cried. The girls are a tremedous blessing to our lives and I feel so THANKFUL that Heavenly Father trusted me to be Natalie and Gracie's mother!

Our other BIG news is that all the girls bows are in the "hospital" (being repaired and made a little bit bigger as they have grown). My friend Sarah is taking good care of the bows and helping them to "heal" as quickly as possible! Gracie had her first day without a bow in 9 months. We even went to Target WITHOUT a bow!! I am really hoping to have them back soon!

My friend Sarah gave me this adorable silk flower with a bead in the middle to "dress up" Natalies helmet. I think it is ADORABLE!!

Gracie's first day without a bow in 9 months!!

Little Miss Personality hams it up for the camera!!

Beautiful Natalie is showing off her newly decorated helmet to Dr Nadell at Children's Hospital in New Orleans & Mrs. Debbie the prosthetic and orthotic designer.

Natalie is laughing at mommy's efforts to sing "Itsy Bitsy Spider."

Gracie is patiently waiting (for once!!) and entertaining herself with my phone! This girl already loves to talk on the phone!! I wonder where she gets that from??

Monday, June 29, 2009

May 2009

Gracie is the more active of the two girls. She has LIMITLESS energy. She is always bouncing, flapping her arms in excitement or squealing with delight. Gracie often steals toys from Natalie, pushes her over or pulls on her helmet. She is full of life and we love her BIG personality!

Natalie is more quiet and thoughtful. She is a cuddler and very emotional. She babbles and makes many sounds. She is serious about her food ... she likes a lot of it and she likes to have it OFTEN!! She is gentle and patient and we enjoy her loving spirit!

Gracie and Natalie try out the new ride on toy together for the first time. Mom is holding on to their hands just to make sure they are safe!

Natalie is trying out the bathtub that is a baby shower gift for her cousin Evelynne who is due August 3rd. Pauls brother Chris and his wife Amber are expecting their first child and we couldn't be more exicted!!

Natalie dug the snacks out of the diaper bag and spilled them on her blanket. What did I find she wonders?

FOOD!! Natalie dosen't waste any time filling her tummy!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

In this very room

Yesterday I co-hosted a baby shower for my dear friend Jodi. I previously posted a prayer request for Jodi and her husband Tristan last week after they experienced a devastating apartment fire. When I looked around the house at all the people here to love and support Jodi, Tristan and baby Ethan my heart was very touched. Because of the generous donations we received we were able to replace Jodi's crib, dresser, armoire, nightstand, rocker, breast pump, car seat and bases and baby bedding all of which were lost in the fire. She was totally surprised and I think a little overwhelmed. I cannot think of anyone more deserving of such a beautiful shower. She deserves all these blessings and many more! She shared her feelings with us at the end of the shower and there was not a dry eye in the room! The entire experience reminded me of a song we sang for my sorority (Kappa Delta) - its called "In this very room"

In this very room there's quite enough love for one like me,
And in this very room there's quite enough joy for one like me,
And there's quite enough hope and quite enough power to chase away any gloom,
For Sisters, through Jesus ... are in this very room.

And in this very room there's quite enough love for all of us,
And in this very room there's quite enough joy for all of us,
And there's quite enough hope and quite enough power to chase away any gloom,
For Sisters, through Jesus ... are in this very room.

In this very room there's quite enough love for all the world,
And in this very room there's quite enough joy for all the world,
And there's quite enough hope and quite enough power to chase away any gloom,
For Sisters, through Jesus ... are in this very room.

Diaper cake I made- Jodi is CRAZY for elephants!!

The table set before the company arrived. I borrowed the beautiful table cloth from Patti - she used it for a baby shower she hosted last summer. Thanks Patti - it was PERFECT!

Jodi (L) and Laura (R) are the first to eat ... since they are eating for TWO!

Yummy treats!

More yummy treats!

Cake made by Jeni- decorated by Becky. It was white cake with buttercream icing which is Jodi's favorite!!

Friday, June 26, 2009

June 2009

Here are a few pictures from this month. Natalie and Gracie are now crawling and pulling up which has made life around here VERY interesting!! The girls are starting to play together more ... they don't realize their own strength and sometimes accidentally hurt each other so we are working on learning how to "be soft to sister!" Natalie got her first tooth. The girls started to eat grits, oatmeal, cous cous, whole wheat pancakes, broccoli, cauliflower, apple, grapes & bananas (all in safe bite size pieces of course). They have figured out how to feed themselves little bites which is SO CUTE! They are not very good with the sippie cups yet... so we will continue to work on that. We put their bouncy seats in the attic because they don't use them anymore and I was SO SAD! It was another reminder that they are growing up TOO FAST!! However, we are enjoying all the new fun things they are doing!

Gracie forever smiling and FULL OF ENERGY!!

Love your beautiful eyes my sweet Natalie!

The girls sit close together often. They will even hold hands on occasion. They were watching "Your Baby Can Read" this particular time. My dad sent the girls the reading program when they were a few weeks old after being suckered by a late night infomercial ... they aren't reading War and Peace yet ...but maybe soon??

The girls are very excited about bath time now. When they hear the water running they take off down the hall crawling as fast as they can. They bang on the side of the tub until its time to get in. Last week after coming in from our evening walk I got Gracie undressed because it was her turn to go first (I switch them every night to be fair) and turned around to get Natalie down to her diaper. When I turned back around Gracie was halfway down the hall in nothing but a HOT PINK BOW!! Her little white bum in the air crawling full speed ahead (she crawls without putting her knees down-just on her hands and feet- we don't know why but it is PRECIOUS!) . I laughed so hard ... I only wish I had my camera ready!

I left the room for a minute to put laundry away and I heard a loud screech! I came running to find Natalie like this! I think she may have been digging for a pacci in the car seat. Gracie was happily watching her sister.

Sleep Deprivation

This picture is from December.

Sleep deprivation can make a lot of things seem funny. Paul was giddy (hard to imagine i know but it REALLY happened) one night when the twins were just a few months old so when I came into the living room I found him smiling and standing over this ...

Yes ... its Gracie in our laundry basket!! He proudly said "Its like where is Waldo!" All I could do was laugh!

Moo Moo

These pictures are from November/December.

When the girls were little our fridge looked like this (please don't judge the random food in our fridge- there was not much time for cleaning it out ... let alone cooking or eating something nutricious).

I was nursing & pumping or BOTH every 3 hours so we ran out of space quite often. We tried really hard to come up with a system to keep it organized ... but could never really find a way to manage all the milk.
Top Shelf
Second Shelf
Our dishwasher looked like this for months on end!!
When we ran out of room in the fridge we resorted to freezing the milk. This was one weeks surplus!! We even had to borrow space in our friends freezers to accomodate all the girls milk!! Thanks to those who loaned us space!!

All the milk made a lot of these ... at one point we went through about 16-18 diapers PER DAY!! I got creative one day and made this diaper pyramid for Paul ... I think he was "impressed" with my amazing skills!!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Trying to Catch Up!!

So I fell a "little" behind on my blog ... at first you all were patient ... then you all mildly harassed me ... I understand if you eventually gave up on me ... I realize it had been almost 5 months! Yes, I am embarassed. I did think about the blog ... A LOT. I kept a list of things to blog about ... I don't really know if I will EVER catch up ... but I am trying to catch up ... and trying to commit to posting more often ... but if for some reason I don't ... please try and still love me ... after all I am just an unmedicated ADHD mother of 8 month old twins!!

These pictures are from Thanksgiving ... I know, I know ... better late than never ... Pauls grandparents (his mothers parents) from San Antonio came for a quick visit to meet the girls on their way to Pensacola to be with their daughter! They were very excited to meet the girls and we were very excited to introduce them to our precious babies!

Great Grandpa Ruebasamen & Gracie

I am not sure GGpa Ruebsamen was quite sure what
to do with such a little preemie baby ... but he did GREAT!

Great Grandma Ruebsamen & Natalie

LaLa (my mom) & Natalie

Opa & Gracie- she slept like this for about an hour!!

For Thanksgiving we took the girls to Lafayette to celebrate with my family (Paul and I switch holidays every year to be fair to both sides). We stayed in a hotel with the girls. We brought their bouncy seats for them to sleep in ... the first night they slept 6 hours straight!! They had never gone more than 3 hours before ... and after that night it was MANY more months before they went more than 3 hours again!! I guess it was the long trip and meeting so many new family members that wore them out! Regardless ... Paul and I were VERY grateful for the SLEEP!!

The girls all tucked in for the night! Sweet dreams!!

The girls meeting my cousins Melanie (L) & Celeste (R) for the first time!

My cousin Chris' wife A'dair feeds Natalie

A headbanger in a rockband!

Why does Natalie wear a helmet?
Our little Natalie has been diagnosed with positional plagiocephaly. A big fancy word for ... her head is flat on the back. I noticed her head was a little misshapen at 6weeks old. I told the pediatrician. She sent us to physical therapy for torticollis (stiff neck muscles) which was supposed to fix the probelm. We then saw a neurosurgeon here in BR who told us to have her sleep on her side and it would go away, which we thought was rediculous. Her head was getting worse so I continued to mention it to the pediatrician who finally got us in touch with Dr. Nadell a neurosurgeon at Children Hospital in New Orleans. He has reccomended that she wear a helmet to help her head grow properly. Many doctors visits later and many trips to New Orleans later Natalie now wears her pretty pink helmet 23 hours a day. She has a 1 hour break after bathtime. It was a major adjustment at first ... emotionally for me because I couldn't kiss her beautiful little forehead anymore and physically for Natalie because it was a little uncomfortable. We have worked through all the initial challenges at this point. She is such a brave little trooper. We are hoping that she will only wear it for a few more months. I would love for her to have it off by her first birthday ... but we will see. I had a mealtdown our first time in public because a stranger in a store asked me "how did you get one normal one and one not" - referring to the girls. Her comment assumed that Natalie was not normal. I cried, she didn't apologize and continued by asking if Natalie had Down-Syndrome. I cried some more!! Our second day out in public a lady asked me if Natalie had epilipesy. I did a bit better than the day before by faking a smile and simply responding "No." My dad suggested that when questioned about the helmet I should say "She is a headbanger in a rockband!" I love my dad!!!

Natalie's head being scanned. The sock on her head has wires that attach to the camera and computer to make a 4D image of her face and cranium. The images are sent to Arizona where the helmet is manufactured.

Natalie's first time with the helmet on ... she was thinking what is this thing on my head??

The orthotic technician is custom fitting the helmet to Natalies head. She has a machine that trims ear holes, trims it above the eyebrows and will shave out the inside of the helmet each time we visit to direct the growth of Natalies head.

7 month pictures

For Mothers Day "we" (wink wink) decided to take the girls pictures here at home. It wasn't worth the saved money to me!! Paul of course feels differently!! LOL. I like the pictures but it was rather stressful trying to get them taken, printed and mailed on time to our family out of town!! I much prefer going to Portrait Innovations where you leave that day with the photos!

So, the girls are 7 months in these pictures.

Abigail Grace

Natalie Adelle

Happy Fathers Day

Happy Fathers Day Paul!! I truly enjoy watching you with our girls. You are a wonderful father. I find joy in seeing you love our girls- playing with them, comforting them, teaching them, praying with them & for them, making them laugh etc. Thank you for working so hard so that I can stay home with them each day. I love you.

We started the day eating breakfast together at the table- unfortunatley a rare event these days. It meant a lot to me! I made whole wheat pancakes and eggs. The girls ate pancakes too! Paul opened his presents and cards- including on that played music. I splurged for the singing hot pepper card ... i couldnt resist! I had suprised him and had the girls pictures made for Fathers Day. You can see one of the pictures by his cards above. We all went to church together which was very nice too! We had a suprise visit from Paul's mother, father, little sister and cousin. The girls put on quite a show crawling, pulling up, babbling etc.

The girls missed celebrating with Opa (my dad) but they are looking forward to seeing him in just a few weeks. I also though about my sweet Papa. Its hard to believe he has been gone for three years. I know he would have loved seeing our precious little girls ... I feel confident he is watching from above!

I had intended to get a family picture at church ... but the girls were tired and fussy so sadly i missed my opportunity!

Friday, June 19, 2009


Our dear friends Jodi and Tristan who are expecting their first child, a little boy, in August lost EVERYTHING in a fire at their apartment tonight. Please, Please pray for their precious family!! I am co-hosting a baby shower for Jodi next weekend and hope that we can help her and her husband prepare for the arrival of their sweet baby boy!! You can read more about their little family here: