Saturday, June 27, 2015

3 years old

On June 26th the little dragons officially turned three. 

We returned from vacation earlier this week and spent the last few days hurriedly recuperating, adjusting to being back home and preparing for Maisie and James' birthday party. They also had the final Early Intervention session and while neither officially graduated (both kids still have ongoing goals that we are working on), it was a huge milestone from a prematurity perspective.

Following their birthday party we are sufficiently exhausted. However, the little dragons seem to have boundless energy. Naps have been few and far between, and bedtime has been wild. Soon we hope to get back to normal.

***
I really can't believe that Maisie and James are three years old. It seems surreal in so many ways. They have made a lot of progress and are continuing - slowly but surely. 

The effects of their premature birth and the reasons behind it (pProm at 12 weeks with James) are still something we are reminded of. When we're at the park, it's when babies and toddlers as young as 9 months old outweigh our kids, walk and climb. It's when people don't think our kids are twins because at three years old, James is still unable to walk on his own and prefers to crawl. It's the unknowns associated with James and Maisie's medical conditions, and the measures we must take to support them. It's the fact that the kids are still wearing 9 month shorts and swimsuits at age 3; while this is great on the budget we can't help but feel like their growth is slow. It's when your peer group is limited, busy, and out of commission during winter months. 


And then there are the amazing times, which are definitely more frequent; when you remember that these are the kids that were given a zero percent chance at life and really are thriving. When the little dragons "meet and greet" every one at the grocery store, they say hello to the grumpy faced people until they break a smile and say something back. At the airport before the flight the little dragons sang and screamed at the top of their lungs; while we attempted to calm them down, we were so very proud that they were capable of such volume and lung power with all the complications they have faced. It's when they giggle and laugh so intensely when you join in, your ribs ache the next day. It's when they are stubborn and headstrong, reminding you that they follow their own path, in their own time and in their own way. It's the times when you witness the unspoken twin communication and bond - like Maisie giving James a lift up onto the couch, or James getting Maisie's blanket from her bed. It's the snuggles, the kisses, the shuns, the loves, the smiles, and the pokey elbows. 

We are so proud of the little dragons and every single thing they have accomplished these past three years. Maisie and James are resilient and determined individuals who are daily demonstrating new skills, interests, and abilities. They are thoughtful, kind, loving, wild, playful and compassionate. We can't wait to see what the next year will bring. Happy third birthday, Maisie and James. 


Sunday, June 14, 2015

Vacationing

We've been on vacation for most of June and it has been an adventure for sure. Jimmy is still at home and will join us on the tail end of our trip. We've been very busy in Washington with Grandma, Auntie Ca, Uncle Da and cousin Marri as they welcomed their newest baby into the family. 


The little dragons have been to Seattle before but for long weekends only. It has definitely been an adjustment for everyone learning how to keep a household moving smoothly with three toddlers and a newborn; ensuring they are all happy, entertained, well fed. It is not for the faint of heart, that's for sure. We are exhausted on all fronts. 

We've been very thankful for our accomodations, company, and the opportunity to be involved in such an important event. Our newest cousin is sweet and adorable and we absolutely love the cuddles. We will take every minute we can get!

***
We've gotten into a lot of shenanigans but have had limited time to report everything. Here's a snapshot of our trip so far: 

Being in Seattle, the little dragons had their first Starbucks (a smoothie).

James learned that sand does not make a very good snack.

Then Maisie tried and wasn't impressed. 

Maisie and Marri enjoyed dressing up together.

James acquired a "New Bainey" and now has both the new and "Old Bainey"; he also tried to adopt a pair of Marri's pajama pants that had the same pattern and material but we intervened.

We took advantage of the unseasonably warm weather and went to the beach to play in the sand; Maisie dug a huge hole and James described Lake Washington as a "big bathtub".

We spent an afternoon with our pProm friends - Advocate Brittani and baby Audri who is 20 months old and doing amazingly well since our last visit in August 2013.