Friday, July 31, 2009
This morning at 8:30am The Esquire woke me up. He normally wakes me before he leaves for work but I was surprised to see him still in his tee shirt and not in a suit.
"I promise I will never call you this again, but today it's ok. Good Morning Mama."
Yup. It's official. We're legal. We're parents. We have twins. I am a mama. The Esquire is a daddy.
Holy Hannah. Let the games begin!
Thursday, July 30, 2009
I should start off by saying technically this is still The Day Before The Day Before our court date...because I never managed to fall asleep last night. Court date nerves have already kicked in.
I had an early morning play date at the beach with this one and her mom, and this one and her mom. It was perfect...overcast and cool but not chilly, the waves were making that perfect roaring noise that could lull an ogre to sleep. Not me of course. I'm still sleepless. Mimi kept showing us how she could do the splits. LT kept pointing out all the "doggies" (who were really birds, but her diction on the word Doggies was perfect).
Later I ran into Julie at the local Target. I was trying to decide what size our twins might be in a month and she was trying to find overnight diapers for the plane. We kept interrupting each other to ask how the other was doing. "are you ready to leave?" "are you nervous about court?" "do we really need a rectal, an oral AND an armpit thermometer?"
It's good to have women who have gone before living so close by. I feel like I'm about to graduate high school and they are all here to help me figure out that silly cap and which parties to go to.
I ended my day with my weekly Pilates session (I know, it sounds all hip and Hollywood but I have neck problems so it's not really that cool). Rebeca, my Brazilian trainer normally yells (good naturedly) and conveniently forgets how to count ("6, 7, 8, 3, 4, 5") and pushes me to my limit. But today I think she could sense I was in a different state of mind and we had the most lovely, relaxing, stretchy kind of class. Afterwards we discussed how seriously beautiful the twins are. Objectively of course.
And now I'm home. We've got Cuban food for dinner. And the crib mattresses arrived. We may watch some Harry Potter (I can NOT read another book on attachment right now...I need some mindless entertainment). And then we'll go to bed. And lay there. And whisper about what's happening elsewhere in the world.
Around 11pm LA time, the Judges will be going to work in Ethiopia (give or take an hour depending on whether they start at 8am or 9am or if they go get coffee first...). And at some point while we 'sleep' tonight, they will review our case and hopefully declare us a family. While we lay wide awake in bed tonight, on the other side of the world someone will hopefully make us parents. Now that is a crazy thought.
And that was my day. I feel it should have been bigger, crazier, with more excitement and fun. It should have involved travel and fireworks and bourbon and wild horses. I mean, this could be IT. If all goes well tomorrow, then everything will change. Today's activities should somehow reflect that change. The difference in Today and Tomorrow.
When I was in Ecuador I went to the equator (did you know the word Ecuador is Spanish for equator? Never say this isn't a teachable blog). It felt like a big thing ya know ... to stand on the Equator. I wanted there to be a change of light or music or something to mark the fact that I had just crossed from one hemisphere to the other but instead there is just a line that the Ecuadorian Tourism Authority have painted on the road. Sure, there's a little museum near by, but no confetti.
If/When we pass court tomorrow it will be like that. Just stepping over a line on the sidewalk. And yet... and yet.
Monday, July 27, 2009
It was a pretty bi-polar weekend for me dealing with this: one minute I felt, "it's all going to be fine." The next minute I thought, "this in NEVER going to work out!" But The Esquire never wavered (at least not externally). The last thing he said on Sunday night was, "we will get a call within 2 days with our new court date assignment." And first thing Monday morning we got the call. The man knows things. Just call him the Clairvoyant Counsel. Feel free to give him a call about your future...
Late Sunday night...when I was at my lowest... we got the perfect email from Emily. Three in fact. Full of new photos of The Wonder Twins. Oh. My. Goodness. We need to come up with a new word for cute...because that word falls flat when you see these two. Her cheeks. His smirk. Their toes. Wow. Also, Emily sent us a little video... in which the twins do nothing but lay there and stare at the camera. But again I say...WOW. It's the best movie I've seen all year.
So for your sake, I'm hoping all goes well on Friday so I can show you these new photos. And of course for our sake I'm hoping all goes well on Friday so we can tickle those toes ourselves soon in person.
In the meantime, you should all be working on new adjectives to describe indescribable cuteness. And keeping your fingers crossed of course...
ps--good luck to everyone with court dates this Friday!
Thursday, July 23, 2009
The day before your court date, MOWA (Ministry of Woman's Affairs) has to file an opinion on your case. The MOWA office did not open today so they weren't able to write opinions on all the cases due for court tomorrow.... therefore all the cases scheduled for tomorrow have now been canceled and must be rescheduled.
Hopefully before the Ethiopian courts close on Aug 21st for the rainy season.
Hopefully. Hopefully. Hopefully.
Yes, we're pretty crushed (thanks for asking). But, we love our agency and we know they are working hard on our behalf. And we have faith that the Ethiopian Government and MOWA are working hard on the behalf of the children. So--with those two things in mind, we know it will all be ok. In the end the twins will be home with us and all will be well. I believe that. I do. Sure, I believe it in a slightly crushed-need-to-lay-down-and-watch-Gilmore Girl-reruns-all-day kinda way right now, but I'll be back up on Hope Mountain tomorrow.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
So...while we sit here NOT counting down the days till Friday (2), I thought I'd entertain you with some more Twinfo, some fun facts if you will. Found this list online so I can't vouch for it's accuracy--but it is vaguely fascinating. #'s 16 & 18 are my favorites...
28 Interesting Facts About Multiples
1. Up to 22% of twins are left-handed. In the general populace, only 10% are left-handed.
2. Did you know that where you live can help determine whether or not you conceive multiples? If you live in Massachusetts and Connecticut, the twinning rate is 25% higher than the general populace.
3. On the other hand, if you don't want twins, move to Hawaii. Their rate of twin births is 30% less than the rate in the rest of the nation.
5. The Yoruba tribe in Nigeria has the highest incidence of twinning in the entire world. Why? They eat lots of yams.
6. One amazing mother in Chile gave birth to the last of her 55 children in 1981. Her children includes five sets of triplets (all boys). Now that mom has her hands full!
8. Both Elvis Presley and Liberace were twins? Their siblings died at birth.
9. The famous advice columnists Ann Landers and Abigail Van Buren (Dear Abby) are twins.
10. William Shakespeare fathered a set of boy/girl twins.
11. Fraternal twins run in families. Identical twins are a fluke of nature.
12. There are 7 different types of twins: identical, fraternal, half-identical, mirror image twins, mixed chromosome twins, superfecundation, and superfetation. These other types are very rare.
13. Due to sonograms being more widely available earlier in pregnancy it is now estimated that for every live twin birth, there are at least 6 other "twins" that no one ever knew about due to the vanishing twin phenomenon.
14. As if the woman in Chile did not have enough children, a woman in Russia in the 1700's, gave birth to 16 sets of twins, in addition to 7 sets of triplets, and 4 sets of quads!
15. The earliest twins were ever born? 22 weeks! Each twins was less than 12 inches long and weighed only slightly more than a pound.
16. Twins do not have to be born on the same dates. The longest gap between birth is 85 days.
17. 27 lbs. and 12oz. Total is the heaviest combined birth weight of any set of twins.
18. Cirque du Soleil employs the most sets of twins. (With the exception of course of the Twins restaurant in New York City where you can only be a waiter if you are an identical twin.)
19. Only 14% of women carry multiples past 37 weeks. Most women give birth prematurely.
20. 56% of all twin births are spontaneous. (Meaning the couple did not use fertility drugs.)
21. Only 16% of triplet births are spontaneous and only 5% of quadruplet births are spontaneous. Anything more than quadruplets is not spontaneous.
23. 82% of multiples are delivered via c-section, while 5% are delivered vaginally. The rest are delivered both by c-section and vaginally.
25. Identical twins experience nearly identical brain wave patterns.
26. Conjoined twins occur in every 1 out of 400,000 twin births.
27. Once you've had fraternal twins, you are 3 to 4 times more likely to have another set!
28. The rate of identical twinning is much higher in mothers that are very young and very old.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
And then we preceded to spend the next 7 hours crossing things off this list....
BTW...just in case you think this list looks light and breezy, let me add that it was THREE loads of laundry and TWO cribs (without an instruction manual) and one 47 ton treadmill (which we could only get as far as the dining room by ourselves...handy for when we want to snack on the run... ).
Some of the cuter proof of our labors...
Yes, that's a bear and a camel in the new stroller. What? You people let your cats try out your baby things... I let my camel.
And then, to reward ourselves for crossing off all but one thing on our list, we went to The Apple Pan for our favorite hamburgers and then to see the new Harry Potter movie. Yes, we're Harry Potter fans. And yes, I had read this book. I knew how it would end and yet...and yet I still cried at the end. When they all held up their wands ... it got me.
And so that was our Sunday... productive and hot and now, thankfully over! Time to go dream up another to-do list....
Saturday, July 18, 2009
SIX days until our court date.
A few weeks ago we got this update on the Wonder Twins:
...after he had his bottle he did what all babies do - and the caregiver was happy to change his diaper!
...was very content having her photo taken and would instantly smile when the camera was pointed at her as if she was posing just for the camera.
Did you catch that? He poops and she smiles. That's right... they're BRILLIANT! I mean, it's obvious right? They are so smart in fact, that I have begun to worry we aren't prepared for them. I mean, here we are, buying teethers and rattles and other such things recommended for 4 month olds when it's sooooooo clear they are ready for the big time.
So in an effort to be more prepared for my super genius kids, I sent away for this:
My good blogger friend Harmony recommended this dvd series to me and I trust her cause, well, she's a professional occupational therapist. She knows this kinda stuff.
This dvd alone will help my budding geniuses with correct letter placement, teach them sight words, give them tips on how to hold avoid confusing b,d, p & q ... !
Ok, so seriously, I'm not going to push this on the Wonder Twins...yet...but as someone with BAD handwriting who is married to someone with even WORSE handwriting, I'm excited to know we have this as a resource for the future. Thanks for passing it on to us Harmony!
So... did I mention we've only got 6 days left?
***EDIT: for some reason the first time I published this, none of my links worked! It was as if I was trying to hoard all the cool learning dvd's for myself! If you are interested in this amazing dvd or perhaps the ones they have for cursive writing, etc...then go here: Steps4kids.com It's truly a great resource!
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
So...this past weekend we went back to Georgia for my friend Sally's wedding. Sally and Susannah and I have been friends since we were 2 yrs old. Crazy.
Sally makes amazing wedding cakes. This is the cake she did for us. The sugar dogwood blooms were so gorgeous people thought they were real. I love this cake.
Susannah is an ordained minister creating a new UCC congregation in Atlanta. She married The Esq and me 4 years ago on my parent's farm. She was kind enough to humor me and wear her black robe instead of her springtime white one so we wouldn't match. :-)
I have known these women longer than anyone outside of my family. We've had our ups and downs but we've always been together in one way or another.
Here we are in Assisi, Italy, in front of St. Francis' church.
I'm pretty sure we were fighting this day ...or maybe at this point we had stopped speaking to each other all together ...whatever, we still took a moment out of our argument to pose for the photo op. That's the kind of friends we are. Even in the middle of an ugly fight we still stop to take the pictures because we know eventually we'll get over it and will want those memories.
Here we are at our High School reunion in 1998...
I know it doesn't look like it but I swear we've all had different hairstyles in the past 10 years.
It was a lovely, intimate, fun, perfect wedding. Susannah, The Esq and I stuck around after wards to gossip with the newlyweds and to help finish off the cakes. (Yes, cakeS...as in more than one. I told you the bride was a wedding cake maker...of course she made all four of her wedding cakes! And everyone of them was delicious!
Back at my parent's house that night, my mom got out all the toys and clothes she had saved from my childhood. I had the best time going through all these things with my mom and grandmother. Everything had a memory for someone. I am so very, very happy that my mom let me pack up most of the clothes to bring home for the Wonder Twins.
Here are three little outfits my mom made for us. The little jumper on the right was my brother's favorite outfit when he was little. As for the dresses, I love how they are 4 feet wide and only half a foot tall. Apparently I was a very short, wide baby.
My mother also made this little red and white two-piece seersucker outfit for my brother. Yes, it's a little blazer. How cute is that! The label says "Specially handmade by Mother." I guess this is proof that my love of seersucker is genetic.
I just love that she made all of these...and that I now can force MY kids to wear them! Though it does make me a bit sad that I'm not as crafty as she was. Somehow I don't think crocheted owls will be as appreciated in 30 years by my kids.
Oh, and I can't forget about The Esquire's favorite part of the trip (besides the tomatoes, bbq and cake)... the fishing. Saturday morning before the wedding he and my dad pulled in this monster...
Yup. That's an 18lb catfish caught in my parent's pond (the same pond we got married by). Good times in Georgia indeed!
And now, after 3 blissfully fun days in GA, we are back in LA. Our court date is in 10 TEN days. So far I've been too busy to get nervous about it...which is a good thing, let's save that for next week! In the meantime I have a lot of little clothes to iron (!) and put away. And I have to find someone in LA growing tomatoes... I'm in lycopene withdrawal!
ps: as for Nanny's story about her only tipsy adventure...well, it's a good one, but you'll have to get her to tell you that one.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Oh, except court dates. I love court dates way more than a triple-threat.
And yesterday ... I got both!
Yup. In the morning we learned our court date is JULY 24th!!!!!
And in the evening we saw Spamalot: a new musical lovingly ripped off from the classic film comedy Monty Python and the Holy Grail. (and yes, that's it's official title)
The court date made us giddy and optimistic and happy and scared all at the same time. Only 16 days people! WooHoo! oh... lordy.... only 16 days! In 16 days everything we've wanted and wished for and worked towards could all come true. That is both mindblowingly amazing and earthshatteringly frightening ya know? To get everything you want... whoa.
Seeing Spamalot made us laugh. And laugh. And laugh. And actually slap our knees (no really--that's not a figure of speech). I come from a theatre background and I have to say I do not know when--if ever--I have laughed so hard and so loud and so much at a production. There is a bit with a bale of hay that Made. Me. Cry. I was laughing so hard. It's all the classic Python bits (killer rabbits, Knights of Ni, Scared Sir Robin, Tim) and then it's new bits like a great little improvised salute to Michael Jackson that caused King Arthur (John O'Hurley) to go up on his lines.
And talk about triple-threats! These actors were AMAZING. Especially the Lady of the Lake..I don't know how this actress is but good grief she has a set of pipes on her. Unbelievable voice.
I know, it sounds like I'm getting Spam kickbacks by endorsing this but I can't really express just how much fun it was. And just how perfect it was to see last night...on the day we learned the actual date our dreams could come true. It was just what we needed: whimsy, humor, happiness, and to be reminded that no matter how nervous we might be about the future, we have to remember to.... always look on the bright side of life.
Come on, you knew I would tie that in somehow! :-) So sing it with me and keep your fingers crossed for July 24th...
If life seems jolly rotten
There's something you've forgotten
And that's to laugh and smile and dance and sing.
When you're feeling in the dumps
Don't be silly chumps
Just purse your lips and whistle - that's the thing.
And...always look on the bright side of life...
Always look on the light side of life...
Friday, July 3, 2009
Today, judges in Ethiopia did the right thing and created a perfect new family.
And the blogasphere said 'Amen!"
xoxo and even more xoxoxooxox -Kat