Monday, December 7, 2009

Birthday Celebrations

WE MADE IT!!!!! We survived the first year with twins! Yesterday was a busy yet very fun day. The boys enjoyed themselves and all the attention. Kiera loved the gifts that weren't for her but got to open AND play with since the boys liked the paper better. My sister Lisa arrived in time for cake (she's flying to WA with me later) and Kiera had her Christmas program at night. I decided to take advantage of being able to make one cake and get away with it and did a train theme this year. It turned out cute and the boys LOVED it! Enjoy the pictures of our fun day!

Caleb and the cake...he's saying, "Come on folks, let's just eat already!"
Joel and the cake, he even managed to grab a piece of the caboose.Both boys and the cake (Joel left, Caleb right)The cousins came over to help celebrate...I think they enjoyed having a boy themed birthday and not having to eat princess cake or eat on a pink plate.
Joel eating his first bites. They both had two pieces each!
Caleb and his first biteJoel after he's done. They looked like little smurfs.Caleb after he's done.
Playing with one of their new toys...a fire station!Caleb opening gifts from Grandpa & Grandma. (Joel fell asleep, so Caleb got to enjoy all the focus on him.
Joel opening his gifts later. Doesn't he look excited?
The happy family...relieved and happy to be through our first year! (Caleb left, Joel right)

Christmas Elves

Watching Daddy hang up the Christmas lights
Decorating cookies

Setting up the Christmas tree.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

More Flashbacks...

Once they started sitting I remember life got a tad bit easier.
Seeing their friendship start to develop was lots of fun. They are good little buddies.
Do we look haggard??? Hmmm....
Little baldies!! Too funny! (Notice Joel...I think it's Joel...has no pants on. He wet through and I just couldn't remember everything all the time, so he went without! Oh well. )

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Hospitals, Birthdays, and chubby wubs

Caleb was hospitalized in February for RSV and we were there for a week. Joel also had it but fought it on his own at home. We are hoping to avoid it this year.
Kiera celebrated her 3rd birthday while Caleb was in the hospital. Thank goodness for the family that rallied around us!
And the chubby wubs...need I say more!!! They look so different!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

What??? They Slept???

Our families will appreciate this post. If there is one piece of advice that I would tell a future parent of twins it is this: PRAY THAT THEY NAP...LONG....

I am still trying to figure out why God blessed me with two babies that never sleep. I kid you not. They nap a total of 45 minutes in a day. If I'm lucky. This has truly been my greatest test...ever. I just never get a break because now that they can stand up in their cribs, if they nap together, they just giggle and laugh at each other and nobody sleeps. Therefore, I have to have them nap separate, which means absolutely NO break for mom. My only saving grace has been a book I was lent (after trying every other possible thing and book out there) that said if your kids don't nap, put them to bed early. They now go to bed between 5:30 and 6:00 pm and sleep until 7:30 am. I just can't remember them ever napping like they did in these pictures...I guess my memory is a little hazy.


Friday, November 27, 2009

A Look back...

In one week we will be celebrating the 1st birthday of Caleb & Joel! It is hard to believe that they are one! I must admit that as we are celebrating their birthday, I will be privately rejoicing over the survival of our first year with twins (maybe I'll crack open a diet coke and head to the grocery store...ALONE). I must say that I am SO glad it is over. I thought I would take the next week to look back at some moments in the last year...what a journey it has been!

Wow!!! I was ginormous!!! I am proud to say that one year later I am 60 pounds lighter!!!! If I ever feel the need to have another child, I'll just take this picture's a good cure.
Were they ever tiny!!! I can't even remember them being this little. 5lbs 15 oz and 6 lbs 2 oz. Now they weigh in at a whopping 24 pounds!!!

I still love this picture! She has come a long way in accepting her little we have to keep reminding her that they will grow up and clean her clock!
I can still remember that feeling of seeing two babies in one crib and just being baffled and overwhelmed that there were two! I still get that feeling every night when we check on them in their cribs before heading to bed. I don't know if it will ever sink in!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Kiera Sings for Grandma

For some reason we can never get Kiera to sing for us, but apparently she will for Grandma. Here she is singing a song she is practicing in Children's Church for the Christmas program.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Little Bo Peep and her sheep...

Caleb, Kiera, and Joel

Caleb didn't mind the outfit...
Joel, however, wasn't so thrilled.
Grandma Link made Kiera's outfit...everyone thought it was so cute...thanks Grandma!!!
We first went to Dairy Queen for supper and then trick-or-treating around the neighborhood. Kiera had never done this before and thought it was pretty cool to get all that candy from people! After the boys went to bed, Ryan and Kiera did her Princess Potato Head in the pumpkin (a much easier alternative for little kids...and dads!). Kiera loved it!!!
The finished product
Kiera jumping in the leaves

Now that the boys are crawling, being outside isn't so exciting for mom...I put them in the pack 'n play in the garage while Kiera and I raked leaves. They had fun peeking over the side...the neighbors got a kick out of it and I absolutely LOVE this picture!!!

Friday, October 23, 2009

H1N1: 4 Link Family: 1

Despite all my best efforts, our family was hit hard by the H1N1. Last Tuesday Ryan and I started suffering cold symptoms. We tried to beat it with Airborne, but my body gave in Thursday night. For 3 days I was in bed sleeping and feeling absolutely HORRIBLE. Ryan took Friday off to care for the kids and I did not emerge until Sunday night. Thankfully Ryan's mom was able to come on Sunday as Ryan had a pretty full day at church. Ryan was able to fight off the cold symptoms and avoid the dreaded flu. By Monday, I was feeling 100% better other than a bad cold but then Caleb started coughing and running a fever. Monday night I took him to the ER with a very high fever and rapid breathing. They basically did nothing but look at him, give him some motrin, and send us home. I got home about 2 am, and by 3:30, Kiera was up saying she was sick. So, Tuesday and Wed. were spent battling the flu which means cranky kids, lots of medicine to hand out and keep straight, keeping everyone hydrated, and trying not to let Joel get sick. Ryan had left on Tues. for Grand Rapids to a Staff Ministry Comm. Mtg. Ryan's mom and I tag teamed and managed to keep our heads above water. Kiera had a terrible cough the entire time and we tried to battle it with typical home remedies (sitting in a steamy bath, sitting outside in the cold for hours, honey....) but by Thurs. I was sick of not sleeping and Kiera throwing up everytime she coughed. I took Caleb and Kiera to the Dr. Thursday morning and found out that they had developed secondary pneumonia from the flu. Now they are on antibiotics and starting to get better. However, Joel now has the flu. Thankfully the other 2 are starting to feel better and are less cranky. Ryan is home again and we are trying to find that "normal" feel again. Supposedly it takes 7 days after the last symptom that we are no longer contagious. So we have many days left hanging out at home and avoiding the public. I am getting tired of being housebound and weary of the sick battle. I have lots of respect for parents who battle this everyday. We hope that all of you are staying healthy. Keep our family in your prayers that we will all heal quickly and that Joel will not develop pneumonia also. A very special thanks to Mom Link for all your help...we would have never survived without you!!!!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Finally! New Pictures!!!

Caleb (L) Joel (R) playing with their cups on the coffee table at Grandma's. They scooted themselves over to the table and could barely see over to put their cups on and off. We spent a few days in Prinsburg while Ryan was at the YS convention in Los Angeles. It was nice to have an extra set of hands.
Kiera playing with her Aunt's old Barbie mall at Grandma Link's. She had a ton of fun!
The boys were playing with Farmer Tad on the fridge and then eventually they ended up like this. I think this is Caleb and Joel is behind. They love this magnetic toy. Lately they started fighting over the main barn that plays music. It is a constant tug of war and lots of screaming. Unfortunately it's a sign of what's to come.
My sister Tami and her family came over Labor Day weekend. We had a bonfire one night. The kids had fun staying up late! We didn't do much but sit around, chat, play with kids, and played Wii. It was a very relaxing weekend.
My new way of keeping everyone happy. We only had one baby swing, so one day I thought why not strap them to the glider! They love it! They just giggle and babble back and forth to each other. If you look close you can see cousin Elliana in the airplane swing (:
Matching shirts with cousin Levi
I FINALLY caught Caleb's cheesy smile. What a goofball!
And....the binky snatcher. Caleb will ALWAYS steal Joel's binky. No matter how many I put in, he keeps taking them. On this day Joel had a binky attached and Caleb still got it. Too funny. Joel just looked at him like, what is going on?

The boys are going to be 10 months on the 6th! They are very close to crawling. They get on all fours and rock back and forth. I am SO ready for them to crawl. I am tired of shuffling babies constantly. We have baby proofed everything and are ready for the next phase. They are slowly starting to develop their own personalities. Caleb is a little more reserved and hestitant to try things while Joel just goes gung ho into anything. They are eating lots of table foods and are already eating us out of house and home. Thankfully Joel's little vomiting episodes have disappeared and all the test we did with a GI specialist came back clear. We hope that it was just a fluke and he will be fine now.

Kiera is enjoying Little Lambs (Coffee Break) at church each week. I am teaching one of the classes, so she loves to go to her "school" as she calls it. She is very into arts and crafts now and just learned how to write her own name. She writes it everywhere and we have been doing more preschool type activities together at home. She is a great big sister and knows just what to do to keep her brothers happy (and how to get her share of cheerios when I'm not watching).

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

We're still here...

Just wanted you all to know that yes, we are still here! Ryan was having problems with his computer and then had to wait for a new one from work. We didn't want to upload pictures on the old one for fear of losing them and then Ryan was gone in CA for a youth leader's convention. So, we hope to update our blog in the next few days...thanks for your patience!!!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

WA Vacation Part 3

The kids and me with my grandparents, Harold & Marjean. They even watched the kids one night so the adults could go out for supper. Thanks so much!!! It was great to see you!
Caleb & Joel sitting in their inch of water. They had more fun just splashing and playing with toys.
Oma is famous for her storytelling...the kids love these particular books. Enjoy your break from those books mom!
Rayahna, Kiera, and Julissa enjoying ice cream at the fair.
Opa and the boys ready for church.
Hanging out with Oma (Joel right, Caleb, left)
Opa reading stories...Joel wasn't real interested.

These are just a few more snapshots of our awesome time in WA. Opa and Oma were great hosts and treated us like royalty. We enjoyed lots of yummy treats, hours of Settlers of Catan, great walks, watching lots of baseball and even going to a Mariners game!, lots of swimming at the Oostra's, time spent with extended family we hadn't seen in a long time, enjoyable lunches out all together, a trip to the Fair, shopping trips to the popcorn store (Target), and lots and lots of laughs. Thanks again everyone for all you did to make our trip so much fun and enjoyable! We miss you already!