On Wednesday our wedded bliss turned nine years old. We can honestly say that 9 years ago, this isn't where we thought we would be, but God led us on this path and its been a roller coaster that is entering an amazing loop.
Tuesday night both Jonathon and Madison slept all through the night (without any falling out of bed) until about 6:45 (when Jonathon heard the alarm Myra had set on super low setting because we needed everyone ready by 9am). Upon waking up the kids just loved playing in bed with each other. Rolling around, laughing, giggling, etc. So Myra took that opportunity to hop in the shower and Madison seemed ok with her departure. After awhile Joe coaxed the kids out of the room (it was clear they were waiting to be removed from the bed like they were their cribs). We went in the living room and looked through some photo books. Myra had made two books of all the pictures from our first trip of us with the kids. The ones we left after our first trip only had pictures of the two of us and we thought this would be great for them to see how they had been with us before. They loved looking through these books. So much so that Madison stayed in the living room with Joe the entire time Myra showered and got ready. Amazing. The behavior didn't stick, but he'll take any moment he can. For those of you that know Joe well, he is often a a favorite of kids so Madison's 'fear' of him is rather heartbreaking at times.
Joe made some scrambled eggs, strawberry jam on croissant, and some peaches. Both the kids LOVED the eggs (and the bread of course). Sorry for the details...some of you may think its a bit much but grandparents like to picture every moment and Myra and I want a way to remember every moment. They actually sat in the kitchen eating their bread while he made the eggs so thats little improvement (but they still needed some food). Kitchen has now become synonymous with food.
We were all set by 9 and waited for Petko to take us to the medical clinic for their appointments. They were a little fussy by the end of the ride (Madison especially) but made it through the wait for the doctor thanks to the blessing of Cheerios. The doctors visit itself was very quick. He checked their lungs, heartbeat and then reviewed their immunization records and that was it. 10 minutes tops for both of them. Then Petko waited in the doctors room for him to finish the paperwork and we headed down to the cafe. joe picked up a couple of juices and was looking for another snack when the lady behind the counter asked what he needed. He said a kids snack so we went in the back room and grabbed some puffs snacks. The four us ate this big bag of puffs (breakfast for Myra and Joe) and they had some juice. The doctor filled out a name incorrectly so Petko had to come down for another form which means the puffs didnt last long enough (thats a recipe for disaster). So we headed outside to distract them and wait. Madison seemed drawn to talk to boys (about 10), even grabbing one's hand - but did not appreciate any adult males talking to her. Petko arrived withn 10 minutes and we headed back for the apartment. When we hit the bumpy cobble streets Madison screamed for the last 10 minutes home. When Petko reached the apartment, he stopped in the street and said "Just put them to bed". Ha - didn't need to suggest that twice, that's what we did. Took about 45 minutes to get them alseep but it was worth it. We skipped lunch because they had eaten so many snacks already.
During naptime we made something to eat and checked our email. It was about 2:30 or so when Joe checked his email an say a message from our friend saying Happy Anniversary. To which he turned to Myra and said "Oh crap, happy anniversary", and after second she said 'Oh, yeah, happy anniversary!" Needless to say a bottle of wine went on the grocery list for today.
Madison woke up about 330 and had a gerber meal (still so thankful we packed so many small meals and snacks!), and once again we woke Jonathon up after about a 3 hour nap. He also had a meal and we played together until about 6:30 when we decided to go for a walk. One thing we played was 'throw things into the tub', Myra was able to coax Madison into the bathroom by acting all silly and loudly throwing plastic bath toys into the tub - she caught on! Joe eventually convinced Jonathon it was okay too (he is very timid about the bathroom) and both had fun doing this. However, we aren't so sure this will really help come actually bathtime - but maybe just a little. At 6:30 we headed out for our walk. Jonathon is ok with the ergo baby carrier, Madison is hit or miss, today was a miss and she refused to be in it as soon as we hit the street and insisted on walking. We just decided to head to McD's (a 10 minute walk) and grab some food to go and that was about enough stimulation for the kids with all the people, stores, etc - Madison did enjoy pointing at lots of different things and then looking up for confirmation that we saw that AMAZING blue large garbage can (and similar items). They both loved their chicken nuggets and some french fries. Again, they actually didnt finish their meals. Madison is good about stopping and then she often goes to play with Myra. You can tell when Jonathon is getting full because he gets playful but he will just keep insisting on more. If you turn him away from the plate so he is looking at something else and then put him down and immediately walk with him away from the table he does well and does not cry which is progress.
We had all the lights dimmed in the apartment and put all the toys away before dinner was over to try a calming atmosphere before bed. Let them play with each other about a a half hour or so in the living room and then off to bed. This is where our anniversary present came. For whatever reason, they love to play with each other bed. We should have stopped them from playing, but it was the most precious thing we have seen. All we could do was videotape it for a while, preserving our memory of this anniversary forever. After our first trip they put their cribs together to try and form a good bond. We think it worked. Madisons comfort thing is to pull her shirt up to her chin, hold it there and suck her thumb. Then sometimes she likes to hit her belly (not hard). At one point Myra and Joe were between the two of them (to try and get them to sleep). Jonathon heard the belly-slapping noise (and couldnt see her) and he immediately pulled up his shirt and did the same thing. Before laying down they also like to stand a couple feet away from each other at the end of the bed, hands on the footboard, and just go up and down (like doing squats) - so cute.
Again, getting them actually sleep was a tough experience. Madison finally fell asleep about an hour or so. Jonathon finally went down about 1030. At one point Joe held him and rocked and then Myra came in and hugged him from the other side so it was a Jonathon sandwich. Seemed to work, but he always wakes up fter 5-10 minutes and screams. He likes to rock himself and sometimes all you an do is sit there and be with him which is tough. Putting them to bed was exhausting enough for us. They start crying as soon as we take them in to the room to lay down. Any other families with tips out there....let us know!
We went to bed soon thereafter, too exhausted to even drink our anniversary wine.