Grandparents, Wagons, and Updates
My parents are at the end of their three-week visit, and it has been fabulous. One-on-one coverage is way better than zone. I have gotten to read a book (The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman, quite engaging) and run regularly.
My dad has also fastened our china cabinet to the wall, greased the folding mechanism on our double stroller, mowed our lawn several times, and cleared out an infestation of maggots (I know, I almost threw up too) from just inside our garage. My mom has done dozens of loads of laundry, chopped tons of food items into baby-sized bits, run various errands, and walked several miles with Theresa hanging onto her fingers.
They both fill milk bottles, do dishes and clean up the kitchen, and have given me three babysitting sessions (a haircut, lunch with Jen, and dinner with Cari). I only hope that we are so helpful for our grown kids. No, wait–our kids will stay small and huggable forever.
Having three adults for three babies also lets us have new experiences, like going to the wading pool at Green Lake. Verdict: Audrey loved it and crawled around, splashing. Theresa and Jamie clung to our shoulders like neurotic cats and performed some sort of lotus pose in trying not to get their feet wet.
Our Choo Choo wagon train attracts lots of attention–thankfully, it is the purely positive kind, rather than the nosy kind.
[Aside: if you ever encounter someone with twins or more, do not ask if the children are the result of fertility treatment. It is none of your business.]
Lately, we have had people shout, “That’s adorable!” from windows of passing cars, had strangers at the store admire the cuteness. I have asked owners of small and friendly dogs if they would allow our kids to pet their dogs, and the girls get to enjoy “puppy kisses” while Jamie stares in uncertainty.
Now for the updates:
- all three can anticipate repeated events. When I tell the Three Little Pigs story, I make the wolf huff and puff and I blow on all their faces. Now when I start telling the story and get to the Big Bad Wolf’s voice, Audrey and Theresa start blowing, and Jamie wrinkles up his face in anticipation of the breeze.
- all sign “more” and “all done.” Audrey and Theresa sign “milk.” Audrey signs “water,” “hat,” and has started pointing at things, like her water cup if she wants some, or the light. She has also started patting her head with both hands–not sure about that sign either.
- Audrey says “eh eh eh” (woof woof woof) when we see a dog, a picture of a dog, or say the word. She also says “Ka” which I’m pretty sure is her attempt at “car.” Or “cup.” Every time the front door opens in the afternoon or we hear the garage door open, or when Alan actually walks in the room after work, she says, “Dada.”
- Audrey also has started a very guttural yell that is not her typical higher-pitched fussy noise. This new one seems to be the sound of “I am really frustrated that you are a) not paying attention to me, or b) can’t figure out what I’m communicating.”
- Theresa says an approximation of “uh oh” that sounds more like “ah-ehhhhhhhhhhh” (but not always when she has dropped something–we’ll work on context next).
- Theresa loves walking with a grown-up’s hands. She’ll be sitting on the floor, notice an adult near her, and reach her hands up, opening and closing them to indicate her desire to grasp a finger or two. She loves walking around and around the room with us, pausing to hold on to a baby gate or to sit at a particular set of toys or books. She has mostly figured out how to get down from a standing position.
- Jamie’s climbing skills continue to improve: the steps in the Zoomazium, the slide Uncle Jeff and Aunt AJ sent us, the person holding him, the back of the couch, the dining room table. Anything he can get a foothold on, he wants to scale.
- Jamie can find a particular book by us reciting part of the content.