Sunday, 14 November 2010

Buggy on eBay

Buggy number 4 is back on eBay. We used it twice. Finding the perfect buggy for twins has become something of an obsession - including running up to perfect strangers in the street just because they're pushing a tandem stroller. Sadly, I have to admit, I'm still not any closer to getting the perfect pushchair.

Before the babies arrived I didn't risk buying a buggy - I needed to know what was required. So we got a Maclaren (lightweight shopping type), just in case. At the same time we were given an old style Out n About Nipper. As soon as we moved into the new house we realised neither would fit through our doors. The result: one large buggy blocking up the corridor making access to every room in the house tricky; the other languishing outside in the bike shed.

Buggy number 3 (the most expensive: a Mountain Buggy) came and went in just one day. It may have been posh (over £1,000 new) but once again it was too wide - something the sellers assured us it wasn't when they texted us the measurement at 2cm less than it was.

And for the most recent mistake... an iCandy Pear. The one that I really thought would be 'The One'. The torpedo style - where one baby sits in front of the other - meant that we could, at last, get the thing through the front door AND into the study. Result. This was going to be a breeze getting on the buses. Another issue with a side-by-side stroller is that you count as two buggies... and only two buggies are allowed on a bus at a time so you can be waiting a while for an empty bus to come along (especially the number 37).

The problem with the iCandy became apparent when we borrowed the newborn attachments from a friend I'd met at the East Dulwich Twins Club. The babies were too big for the lie-flat cocoons - a metal bar got in the way of their legs - but too young for the sit-up seats. So it's bye bye to buggy number 4.

Ade has, sensibly, now imposed a one-in-one-out policy on buggies. Next up: a Phil and Teds.

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Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Oscar's wonky head

Poor Oscar has a wonky head. He's seeing an osteopath for it and apparently it's not too bad. We've been given an exercise to do to help straighten him out - basically holding his head against you in the direction it doesn't want to go. His neck is a bit compressed, not helped by Caitlin being on top of him when they were still in my tummy - he was head down, ready to be the first to come out - so the treatment aims to help lengthen it.

Reading up on wonky head syndrome (officially called plagiocephaly), apparently it's been on the increase ever since the 'back to sleep' campaign to encourage parents to put their babies to sleep on their backs. This has significantly reduced the number of cot deaths, and if a wonky head - in most cases purely an aesthetic thing - is the price to pay then so be it.

Worst case, it can lead to brain development problems... but I'm not going to worry about that just yet.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Double the laughter

We had one of those 'it's all worth it' moments today, Oscar and Caitlin laughed together for the first time. Not just a giggle at the same time but properly laughing and fully interacting. They really were looking at each other and laughing like someone had told the most hilarious joke ever. It was brilliant.

And it happened twice too. Oscar was having a crying fit in the car, I was doing my best to cheer him up. Then, all of a sudden Caitlin did exactly that. She started laughing at him and he went from bawling to brilliantly happy, 'talking' and laughing out loud.

Granny Rosemary and Tony are staying at the moment and we had another cause to celebrate - the babies slept through to 7am for the second time ever last night. Whatever they did at the 10.30pm feed, it worked - stern words apparently. Babies clearly on best behaviour for granny. She can stay more often!

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Sleepless nights

Hard to believe these cute little things can inflict such great pain. I am talking about those sleepless nights. Waking up to a loud 'waaaahhhh' at (check the clock) 4.21am is a heart sinking moment. It's not surprising sleep deprivation is used as a method of torture.

After 3 months of dedicated routine training we're still no further on from the four-hourly feeds. Well, Oscar isn't. Caitlin is. So this week it's time to get tough. He's clearly waking out of habit not hunger so we've gone into 'ignore' mode to try and break it. It's worked well for 2 nights out of the 3 we've tried it out. The one 'bad' night he was 'chatting' from 4.42am to 6.53am when I finally fed him... and he wasn't even hungry. Fingers crossed for a good night tonight (10.30pm to 7am would be nice, pretty please Oscar, thank you!)
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Chocolate coated Francesca

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Francesca & Kaiya

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Francesca & Yoyo visited

Little Francesca isn't that much older than her cousins - she'll be two in January - so they should be playing together soon enough. Right now she just points and says 'bebe' and 'bebe'. Sometimes she just points and says 'that'. Still, she's cute enough to get away with it. So lovely to see her and my sister Yoyo (auntie to the twins) today.

Monday, 11 October 2010

Oscar & Caitlin - week 13 weigh-in

Oscar & Caitlin were weighed last week. He continues to out-weigh her by about a third. He's currently on 14lb 12oz, she's a lightweight 10lb 13oz. It's been the same since birth - him: 5lb 11oz, her: 4lb 5oz. It could be that she'll be a small person - both grannies are/were petite and great grandparents too. Or maybe she'll catch up, we shall wait and see... better that way around anyway.

The weight discrepancy does, of course, bring with it the advantage that she can grow into all his clothes.

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Caitlin - week 13

Sometimes I forget to take pictures of the twins. There's too much other stuff to do. But friends with children have advised me to document their early stages as this time goes all too quickly.

Sure enough, we went on holiday recently - a feat in itself - to Dunmore East and the only pictures I have of the babies are in their buggy. So all you get is a picture of a buggy - not a baby. Very bad. So I'm making a concerted effort to take more pictures. Here's one I took yesterday of Caitlin - see what I mean about her wearing blue.

I'm hoping that in years to come Oscar and Caitlin can look up this blog and marvel at how tiny they were.
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Monday, 4 October 2010

Oscar - week 13

Posted by PicasaBeautiful boy in blue
Despite our better judgement, we do tend to dress the babies up in pink (for girls) and blue (for boys) - it's not us, it's all those lovely people who gave us presents. Funny thing is, Caitlin gets Oscar's hand-me-downs so she ends up in blue too, and sometimes sports an item of clothing with a picture of a truck or something equally 'boy-ish'. Seeing as she has less hair than Oscar you could be forgiven for thinking she's a little boy. Luckily she's an elegant little thing with petite features and arms that naturally arc and flow into ballerina like positions.

Sunday, 3 October 2010


Three months on, having twins has proved to be exhausting (sleepless nights aplenty), stressful (try picking up two screaming babies at once) and terrifying (how am I going to cope?). It's also been boring (the endless bottle washing), amazing (corny things like first smiles), rewarding and the most wonderful experience ever.

And, as three months is something of a landmark, arriving here feels like a bit of an achievement in itself. Seems like a good time to make a blog about the trials and triumphs of bringing up twins.

Welcome to the world of Oscar and Caitlin, we're at the start of a journey and it's going to be a fun fuelled adventure - here's hoping.

Oscar & Caitlin - warm feet

Cute booties by clever Chloe.

Sadly one of Caitlin's booties went missing (ie we lost it) in Greenwich Park. After half an hour spent re-tracing our steps, asking if anyone had seen it at the cafe we'd stopped at and checking with the groundstaff picking up litter we gave up. I loved those booties. They were destined to become family heirlooms. Moral of the story: never leave home with precious items.

Thankfully the story does have a happy ending; Chloe is not only clever but generous too and sent us a new pair. These are now marked for home use only.

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Oscar & Caitlin - week 4-6

In their lovely Petit Bateau vests from Bob & Phillippa
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Oscar & Caitlin - week1-4

Oscar's foot
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Oscar & Caitlin - week 1-4

Oscar - big yawn
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Oscar & Caitlin - week 1

Dad with Caitlin, Mum with Oscar
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Oscar & Caitlin - week 1

Dad and Caitlin
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Oscar & Caitlin - week 1

Oscar & Caitlin - home from hospital

You can tell Caroline had arrived by the time this photo was taken. Giveaways include bathed babies and tight swaddling. Caroline created order where there had been chaos, calm where there'd been panic.

We had two nights at home with Oscar and Caitlin before Caroline arrived. I was counting the hours down on the day she arrived - I didn't even know how to change a nappy, what to do with an express machine or how to use steriliser. And, having moved house three weeks before the babies were due, the place was in a bit of a state.

It wasn't long before Caroline had ironed out the creases (literally - ironing being something of an obsession of hers). I still miss her.