Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Good Morning (Bath Time).mov

Well, we have an official family videographer! I'm been wanting Brad to take on that role ever since the girls were born, but we did really only have our phones to take videos with for the most part- and I've just been too focused on taking a million photos. I forget a lot of times to do video (and rarely post the ones I do). It's one of those little regrets...I wish I had video even when the girls were just little blobs who did nothing, it would just make all that they do now seem even more amazing!
Anyways... I got Brad this gopro camera he's really been wanting for father's day. He has some big plans for using it in Alaska while he's fishing. He's also graciously accepted to use his new toy to document some of our family life as well. He made his first video yesterday of the girls taking their bath. My favorite parts are when June tries to brush the camera's teeth and when Lyla goes crazy trying to eat her bath book.
So cute and pretty impressive for day one! :) Also, if you are concerned at all by the song choice- we don't actually think anyone is trying to hate on our little angels, it's just a cute song that says good morning a lot and Brad only has a couple of songs on his computer. FYI. Don't hate.

P.S. June pooped in the tub for the first time after this video was over...disgusting, I know. I've been fearing that day and knew it was only a matter of time before one of my babies made me enter that world. I now have a new merit badge to sew on my mom sash. Except Brad cleaned it up, kinda seems like a man's job don't you think? 

Sunday, June 17, 2012


from June & Lyla for their daddy
Brad really is an amazing dad.  One of his best qualities as a dad is how he never grew up. He doesn't take things too seriously and knows how to be silly and have fun and act like a kid.  As a dad you couldn't ask for a better quality.
What a fun dad. Brad has always been a favorite among my nieces and nephews, always wrestling with them and teasing and having fun playing with them.  Now he has his own kids to do that with.
They love their daddy. "dada" was both of their first words.
 What better way to celebrate daddy than shooting some hoops?
 being silly, just like dad.
Playing with daddy's hats...

Monday, June 11, 2012

a chocoholic's diet

I can't say I've been perfect not eating "bad" carbs or sugar for the past three weeks, but I've been pretty close. I'm pretty sure I've used more {chocolate} will power in the past two weeks that in my entire life. I think it's good for me to learn this month that I CAN do it. Most people who are like me (like eat sweets for breakfast and lunch) have been telling me "I could NEVER do that!" and I smile at them, but I know it's not true- they don't WANT to do it. Of course they could do it, if I can do it anyone could do it- it has been incredibly hard. It's not like I don't want to eat sweets and yummy baked goods everyday- but I wanted a jump start to getting back to my pre-pregnancy weight, and the family biggest loser has been good motivation. I figure if I can survive the extreme this month it won't be so hard in the future to make and eat all the sweets I'm used to, but to issue a little more self control in the amounts and how often I binge on my beloved chocolate.
I've come up with a few healthy versions of sweet treats that have really helped me get through this so I thought I'd share a few of them here.

After some trial and error this is my favorite {yummy!} cookie dough that has no butter, sugar, or flour. I haven't tried a baked version yet, but  I will soon! I doubled this for my Sunday treat this week and it completely satisfied my sweet tooth.
measurements are estimates-adjust to taste
1 spoonful peanut butter (can also use "better n' peanut butter"- low cal, low fat)
2 spoonfuls sugar-free fat-free instant vanilla pudding mix
2-3 spoonfuls skim milk
2-3 spoonfuls oats
1 small spoonful cocoa (optional, omit for a more traditional cookie dough)
a few chocolate chips (optional if you add cocoa- I bought some sugar free ones that I add)
Just add all the ingredients in a little cup, stir with a spoon and eat up!
{It holds up well in the fridge, and remember because of the pudding and especially if you use instant oats it thickens up a lot so don't skimp on the milk. You can also add a little splenda in place of some of the pudding if you want}

skim milk- fill blender 1/2 way
1/2 pkg sugar free fat free chocolate pudding
1 tsp vanilla
1 spoonful splenda
1 spoonful cocoa
Add ingredients to the blender and blend for a minute or so till it's nice and frothy. Taste and add more ingredients to taste if you'd like it more chocolatey/sweet etc. The key is to blend it good- it increases in volume, gives it a lovely texture and makes it taste yummy. I keep a blender of this in the fridge at all times so that when I need a treat I can just re-blend and pour a glass of yummy chocolate milk. This has been my breakfast most mornings and sometimes in the afternoon or evening a little swig of this helps me get through the day.

This chocolate mousse pudding is what I've always used when I make trifle, regardless of health and I've discovered it is very versatile- this week I made a non-chocolate version to top some healthy-ish cupcakes I made for a shower, I've also used it to fill mock eclairs etc.  This weekend I made this sort of chocolate mousse pie to take to a lunch with friends-
1 large pkg sugar free fat free chocolate pudding mix
1 1/2 C milk
1 container sugar free cool whip, thawed
Whisk together pudding and milk, stir in cool whip. Store in the fridge.  It is yummy on it's own or it can make a great topping/filling etc- the options are endless and you can do it with any of the pudding flavors- white chocolate and vanilla both work great!

Noticing a trend yet? Lol, I guess my saving grace for this diet is sugar free fat free pudding mixes. There's so much you can do with them- they are so easy to use and add very little calories for the flavor and sweetness that they add. Although they contain corn starch, there are only a few Tbs of pudding mix in each box so when you make a little snack with a portion of it I think it's fairly insignificant compared to all the high-calorie alternatives that I'm replacing it with (think butter, flour, sugar, chocolate etc).
Keep calm & eat {sugar free} chocolate! :)

Saturday, June 9, 2012


As a mother of twins I have to say it's been it's been really nice having a community of other twin moms to confide in- some in real life (hi mom), some through blogging, many through instagram. I think only parents of twins really "get it" (the twin part that is)
I absolutely love being a mother of twins- I feel so blessed and think it is the funnest thing in the world. I always wanted twins and that's what I got, I love it! That being said, I'm pretty sure I bawled everyday for about 6 months or so- a lot of that probably had to do with the fact that I never slept.
As soon as I found out I was pregnant I realized my relationship with the world was changing- people asked me what I was having and when I'd say TWO girls, suddenly everyone had the okay to express every opinion they had with me, the perfect stranger.
People helped me with family planning. "You will not want more children after this" and "I'm sure you're done now".
People thought it was terrible news, "Oh my, your firsts? I don't know if I should I congratulate you??"
Lots of people wanted to know about me and my husbands intimate life, "Do twins run in your family (the politest way to ask if I was taking fertility meds)/Are the twins naturally conceived?/Are these fertility babies?"
It was some people's responsibility to make sure I understood how difficult it was going to be. "Your life is over", "My {relative}'s {friend} has twins and she wants to die". Oh thank you, that's very helpful to know. I'll consider that next time I get pregnant and maybe just go for 1 baby.
People had very considerate stories to share with me like "I'm a twin! But my twin died inutero." What a wonderful story to share with someone pregnant with twins. 
Once the girls were born and I started taking them in public the real invasion began, I no longer went to stores and stayed out of people's way and they stayed out of mine.  90% of the time people are very nice, I actually think its fun to hear people exclaim "oh twins, what beautiful babies, how blessed, etc" that never gets old. But suddenly every stranger in the world was giving me parenting advice and saying comments that have been repeated to me hundreds of times and have driven me to the point that I avoid peoples faces when I'm out and walk as fast as I can.
Including, but not limited to:
"You've got your hands full!"
"Better you than me" {um yeah, I think so too}
"I would die if I ever had twins"
"I could NEVER have twins" {so what would you actually do if the doctor told you you were having twins??}
"That kinda stinks, you had twins but they don't even look alike" (yes someone actually said that)
"My kids are <2 years apart, so it's like having twins, in fact it's harder because they are at different stages" {yes, it's much easier to have 2 babies in that newborn-having-to-nurse-every-2-hours-never-sleeping-spitting-up-and-pooping-constantly stage, I also enjoy juggling 2 teething, whining babies with the exact same needs, I also think it is much easier...}
 Some aren't as bad, but I'll just point out that I hear them all the time...
"double trouble!"
"Is it hard having twins?" {um, yes.}
"One of each, a girl and a boy!"
"Are they twins?"
I realize that people generally have good intentions, but hearing some of these comments so many times in a row still sometimes gets annoying. One particularly crazy day at costco I stopped counting the number of times I heard "you've got your hands full" after 15.
I don't want to sound mean, I don't mind that Lyla and June get noticed- in fact I'm so used to it I wonder what's up if I go somewhere and don't get lots of comments. But its one thing to say a KIND comment in passing and it's another to go out of your way to say nothing positive to a complete stranger. (Did the parents of these poor, deprived strangers never have them watch Bambi or something? If you can't say something nice don't say anything at all.)
I don't know what possesses people to decide that they should share that they're so glad they're not me, with me. I don't see people in the store and walk up to them because they just HAVE to know that I'm so glad I'm not them. weirdos. But they are right, I guess it is better me than them because June and Lyla are much better off being raised by me, a person who feels happy and privileged to be their mom, despite how hard it has been at times.  It is double the trouble, double the diapers, double the bottles and tantrums and feedings and messes. But it is also double the fun, double the love, double the laughs and happiness. I get to experience all the joys of motherhood times two and I'd have it no other way!

Friday, June 8, 2012

little bakers

I was organizing pictures on my computer when I realized I never posted any pictures from the girls' 1 year old baking shoot I did with them- and obviously the blog needed this cuteness, so here you go.
I'd been dreaming up combining my two favorite things ever since the girls were born. (my babies and my baking)

Set up:

I decided I would use these pics for their invites. It wasn't anything fancy, but I think the picture kinda speaks for itself and makes up for lack of graphic design skills.

I did it in place of a pre-party cake smash--it was a baby cake batter party!
 I made them some little aprons for the occasion.
 and I was planning to make fabric chef's hats, but since they were baking I wanted them to look like pastry chef hats, not just regular mushroom style chef hats.  I know that's ridiculous and no one would ever notice, so now I kinda wish I'd gone the other route they might have stayed on better...oh well, we'll live.
I was so pleased to see how quickly they accepted chocolate as a favorite food, my offspring.

 Help yourself.
 Pure adorableness, in raw form.
 Is there anything better than baking babies?

little June baker
 She likes her chocolate.

little Lyla baker
 Even after their bath I still found chocolate in Lyla's ear.
 We all had such fun!
the end.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Pizza Night Brad and I love pizza night, and I'm not gonna lie, I make a mean pizza. It's the perfect vehicle for my culinary creativity and it also helps accomplish my "perfect bite" theory. Everything is bite size and spread out meaning it's easier to get all the yummy flavors in your mouth at once. I started doing pizza night every week and was having so much fun creating different pizzas each time. So, even though the sugar thing has been much harder than the carb thing on the diet, I've missed the pizza night tradition.
Then I realized pinterest could probably solve all my problems. I searched for carb-free pizzas and the yummiest sounding one was with a cauliflower crust- there are several versions out there and I changed it up a bit to use less cheese, more cauliflower, and make a bigger pizza.  I wasn't sure what to expect, but honestly I didn't miss the bread- it was hard to believe it wasn't there and the texture and flavor were great!

1 head cauliflower
1 1/2 C shredded mozzarella cheese
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp crushed garlic
desired sauce and toppings (precooked)
Pull leaves off of cauliflower leaving the stem. Holding the stem, grate the cauliflower into a microwavable bowl (you'll probably end up with around 2 1/2 C of riced cauliflower). Microwave uncovered for 7 minutes. Let cool slightly then add remaining ingredients and pat out and shape onto a pizza stone. Lightly brush with olive oil if desired. Bake at 450 for 15 minutes then remove, add desired toppings then return to broil for a few minutes till toppings are nice and hot. Because of the cheese the crust will stick a little to the pan, use a metal spatula to scrape it off and everything will be okay. You could use parchment paper if you're really scared. Enjoy!
{in case you were wondering, this particular pizza has BBQ sauce, chicken, bacon, onions, peppers, parmesan, and a tiny bit of mozzarella}

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

water babies

Yesterday started out as one of those days. As I prepared breakfast the girls managed to get a 60-pack tub of gum out from the cupboard- I looked over to see two babies with their mouths stuffed with every single piece of gum in the container- like chimpunks with acorns. As I fished them out of Lyla's mouth June ran as fast as she could from me, I ran to get them out of her mouth and saw Lyla retrieving her gum from the garbage can, it was actually pretty hilarious and no one choked so that was nice.
After that we went grocery shopping. June kept standing in the stroller and I kept getting her back down. {my girls can maneuver their way out of just about any 5-point harness} At the checkout stand I was busy fishing all the groceries out from the bottom of the stroller when out of the corner of my eye I see a baby falling and a loud, scary smack. June was hysterically screaming with good reason as I held her and tried to finish unloading the groceries. It took a long time for her to settle down and in the car she started dozing off. I immediately panicked, was she dozing off because it's close to nap time? Because she has a severe concussion? She fell so hard right onto her head... I observed her while she napped at home and in the afternoon I literally wanted to lay on the couch and just leave the girls in some non-existent padded room with cheerios and soft toys for the afternoon. Since that wasn't going to happen I decided to try and be a fun mom and let the girls enjoy the summer weather- it turned out so fun and we all forgot about the morning's events. {June's giant goose-egg wasn't too noticeable in the pics, you might notice her left eye appears lower that her right...but it looked much better than today's shiner.
The girls laughed and played in their little "pool" for about 20 minutes, it was so fun to watch!
having too much fun
 warming up to the water...
starting to think it's hilarious
 so happy to have their constant playmate
Splish splashin' away, then they tried to move the bucket which was way too heavy for them
They are just too sweet with each other sometimes, it melts my heart.
 This was such a big hit, I'm convinced we need a real little baby pool for them to enjoy through the warm summer months!
I know I'm sharing way too many of these pictures, but I'm in love with all of them and this blog is for me- and I was never that good at following the "less is more" philosophy. :)
 June loves playing with Lyla's hair.
 perfect afternoon
 Glad I didn't let the morning get the best of me, monday was a great day!

Friday, June 1, 2012

cookies and cakes and brownies, oh my!

My family is doing a biggest loser competition, and anyone who knows me know that me and a diet are like oil and water. It just doesn't blend. I like to be happy and enjoy life- which for me revolves around food. I am passionate about eating well and having delicious food- especially baked goods and chocolate. Luckily for me, up until my pregnancy I was able to eat anything I wanted and with very minimal exercise (or no exercise) maintained my "happy weight". Then came pregnancy...I gained a lot. By 6 months I weighed what my mom weighed at the end of her twin pregnancy. I saw numbers on the scale I never imagined possible for me. It was a little scary, but I had 2 other people in my body so I cut myself some slack.
After the babies were born the pounds fell off for the first couple of months with just breastfeeding. I still ate at least as much as I did when I was pregnant, and was so incredibly exhausted constantly that exercise wasn't even in the equation. I was 10 lbs heavier than I was before, but I was happy with the one month results.
Then all of the sudden, 15 months later I still weigh the same. Maybe even a little more. When I stopped breastfeeding I kept eating the same and quickly realized something needed to change- I was gaining weight. Pregnancy completely changed my body, not just my ribs and my stomach, but it's ability to let me eat limitless amounts of sweets. I started trying to be a little more conscious about what I ate, and even went to the gym a couple times, but that only helped me maintain my weight, not loose it.
I've never really done a diet before and always thought they sounded like a cruel form of slow death, but I've also never really had to lose weight. I'm not crazy huge, still in the normal BMI for my height- but I used to be at the very bottom of that "normal weight" category, and I feel like that's where I belong. I want to get back.
So when Brad said no one else stood a chance against him in my family's biggest loser competition, it gave me the motivation I needed to prove to him that he's not the only "smart and hard working" person out there- I can do hard things too. It may seem ridiculous, but not enjoying my food is just about the hardest thing anyone could ask me to do. (outside of something crazy like leave my family)
For 2 weeks I've had basically no sugar or "bad" carbs (actually good carbs in my book). I did cheat a bit one day (do donuts and chocolate cake count as cheating?), but that was last week. I feel more tired and ornery than normal and I'm even more convinced sugar is good for me. I've done some crazy things- things like make brownies...with black beans and splenda- just to mildly enjoy the experience of sitting down and eating something that looks like a brownie. This isn't something that I can keep up forever, but the competition is only 4 more weeks and I only want to survive this craziness till I'm back to my normal weight. Then I'm *hoping* that I can go back to an only slightly modified version of my ways to maintain that weight. (ya know, like instead of eating 10+ of the cookies I make maybe 4-5 can do the trick.)
I want to beat Brad, but it's looking nearly impossible at this point. I'll still do my darndest to prove him wrong, but the most important thing to me is getting to the point that I can wear all my pants, that I don't feel self conscious when I get dressed, and feel a little more "myself". It's a little frustrating to imagine all this work will be in vain the next time I'm pregnant, but hopefully I'll discover it is possible to feel at home in my own skin post-pregnancy and that will give me more motivation not to wait over a year next time to give it a try. Here's to hoping.
There is a smaller version of me trapped somewhere...

Probably trapped because of all the things like this I'm always making:

Ahh, dear friends. See you in a month or two.


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