Thursday, December 29, 2011

Made it...

So, selfishly, the one thing I really wanted to do was make it to Christmas and NOT be in labor and in the hospital over Christmas.  I knew exactly when I could/could not go into labor and be out of the hospital in time, etc.  So, I was thrilled to wake up on Christmas morning and celebrate with Mike and Addie and Sam and not be in the hospital!  Yay!  Here's a peak at our three days of fun at Mike's Mom's house, my Mom's house, Christmas morning, and my Mom's family party at Marlene & Dave's.  We had a great time and even though we didn't make it to all our normal stops or a Christmas Eve service, it was a great holiday on bedrest.  ;)

Hope yours was wonderful too.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Best. Wife. Ever.

10 inch asus transformer pad.   Rock!

Merry Christmas

We sending you the merriest Christmas wishes! No babies yet! Here's hoping the stay put for a couple more weeks! They're 4lbs.4oz. and 4lbs.5oz. right now!
jen & mike

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


If you have children, nieces, nephews, friends...whatever...stop what you're doing and create one of these Santa videos for your kiddo:

It is so darling.  I can't wait to show Addie and Sam when they get home.  It takes about 15 minutes and it's absolutely necessary to upload three photos.  It's so cute you'll melt!

(Special thanks to my Mom for finding the cute idea!)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Not quite the Christmas Baker

In between laying on my side and with lots of help from my Mom and Mike, we have managed to pull of some holiday baking.  We made chocolates, cookies, and even a gingerbread house.  Let's just say these pics are proof that perhaps Sam wasn't quite as into the baking and decorating as he was into the taste-testing.

The last shot is hilarious because his face gives him away.  :)  Luckily, miss Addie was quite the opposite--a total help.

 And yes, why wouldn't we make a GB house in our Halloween princess costume? 


Today is our very happy 32 week point! Yay! I'm so excited/relieved to make it to this happy milestone. We finished up the babies' nursery yesterday. We kept most things the same except for the extra crib and a fancy new vinyl wall transfer of the tree and birdies. It was fun to do something new and special for the girls. We had to rearrange a little and move the glider to a new location. I even scored an extra glider from my friend Jenny for our master bedroom in case one baby is up and one is sleeping in the nursery. Our extra crib was a hand-me-down from a teacher-friend, Lara, at Bassett. I love how the new crib matches the rest of the furniture! We set a tentative c-section date for January 3rd! I'm hoping the girls stay put until then!

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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Addie's Preschool Christmas Show

Addie's preschool show was darling.  Here's a highlight. 


We love this crazy neighborhood in Strongsville that goes ALL out with Christmas lights.  We went to see them last weekend.  Mike even let me out of the car for a few minutes.  Yay!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Santa Scramble...

Addie:   "Daddy, I changed my mind.  I know I told Santa I wanted a surprise, but what I really want is that board you can color on and it glows."


Monday, December 12, 2011

31...and counting...

I think I can, I think I can...

Kitchen Re-Work

So this summer we decided to make some minor changes in our kitchen to improve functionality and make room for one two more babies.  We started with a new door that slid instead of opened into the kitchen. We had to add some drywall and create a larger corner too. We added a giant floor to ceiling cupboard from IKEA:

We Our friend Mark cut some holes in this current section of our countertop and added a new drawer and a new cupboard door so you can actually see into the cupboard and remove things without the use of extendo arms and a flashlight.  It's fabulous.
So of course, all this meant I had to reorganize the pantry, new cupboard, new drawer, etc.  Here are some of those highlights.

 Check out this fancy contraption my mom found for me.  She knows I'm organized crazy and buys me early Christmas presents having to do with organization.  The drawers slide out.  Genius!  You can find it at your local Bed, Bath, & Beyond.  Below is the new IKEA inside...the top became Mike's new liquor cabinet kitchen storage area.  I put all my baking goods on that top shelf there to make room in the pantry for kid snacks and dinner prep stuff.  The less frequently used stuff went over here:
 I also want to mention that prior to this point I had NO drawers that were wider than 8 inches.  Which meant I was deprived of this:

Hello full sized silverware organizer.  I love you.

Credits: Huge thank yous to the brains behind the operation: my Mom and the super muscle power: Steve N. and the painting and IKEA install help: Steve A. The carpentry expertise: Mark.  Staining expertise: my mom.  It's sooooo nice to cook and live in our kitchen with these new fancy improvements.  Yay!

Sunday, December 11, 2011


My sweet parents are doing overtime lately with me on bed rest. Pretty sure no one would be getting anything for Christmas and my hubby would be nuts be now if it wasn't for all their help. Anyways, last Friday, they took the kids to see Santa. The results are quite impressive...and no one is crying on Santa's lap this year. Woo woo!

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Saturday, December 10, 2011


We're pretty spot on with the names we want for the girls...with one small tweak we're currently considering.  But in case you were wondering:

Names Addie has wanted to name the twins:
·         Maya
·         Hailey
·         Lauren
·         Maddie
·         Holly
·         Molly
·         Rapunzel
·        Tiana
·         Belle

Friday, December 9, 2011


So one of my dear college friends, Caitland, is married to a Christian songwriter named Stephan Sharp.  They live in Tennessee and I just got this video from her...fully NOT knowing that it was one of her hubby's more recent hits.  I'm sure you've heard the song at church or on the radio...if not, give a listen:

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Grow Babies Grow!

My friends Lisa and Megan have adopted the mantra "Grow Babies Grow" after all these countless doctor's appointments.  Well the good news is...that they are!

Mike and I went to the specialist today and the girls did some great growing since our last visit.  They are 3 lbs. 8oz. and 3lbs. 13 oz!  Woo hoo!  And since they're bigger, the percentage difference went down to 8% variance...which is good because once they get to 10-20% variance people get nervous. 

The next few weeks mean more doc visits and nonstress tests to make sure babies are good and growing.  I've decided with 3 appointments a week, this bedrest thing will just speed right up. 

Thanks to you for your prayers, meals, well-wishes, visits, and slave labor.  And thanks to God, as always, for watching over our sweet baby girls and our family.


Dear Christmas Music Radio Stations,
You really shouldn't play that "Christmas Shoes" song anymore in case there's a pregnant girl on bedrest with twins.  It's far too emotional. 
Just saying.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

True Confessions

1. You know that warm, sweet feelings you have about pregnancy and feeling that baby inside and wanting to rub your big belly?  It's that feeling that you can't imagine never being pregnant again because it's so magical.  I'm over that.

2. I'm wearing Mike's tshirts now. 

Michael Buble Christmas Special

Last night I watched the Michael Buble Christmas special.  It's the kind of show I'd normally never watch because I'm running around gluing 25 reindeer noses on something for my first graders at this time of the year. 

So last night I watched it.  I will tell you this, I give him credit for where he was trying to go.  It was all old-fashioned and nostalgic and everything.  But, truth be told, about the only thing I liked was Michael Buble's voice.  And why, pray tell, was Justin Beiber's pants slouched so much.  I was having flashbacks to high school.  Please pull them up. 

Michael Buble, I think I will stick to your CDs. 

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Santa's Elves...

So this weekend my darling sister and her wonderful hubby came all the way from Cincinnati to help us do some serious decorating and baby-prep.  They set up my tree, decorated the house, put up lights outside, entertained our children, brought us food, built a crib, hung up stuff, wrapped presents...and more.  Seriously, Santa's elves don't hold a candle to Shell and Steve.  We're so grateful for all of our family and friends who have been nonstop amazing.  We're so blessed!

Monday, December 5, 2011

30 Weeks are Here!

I am so grateful to have reached 30 weeks with the twins.  Thanks to the countless family and friends who are praying along with us that those little girls stay put a few more weeks!  :)

I had a test last week that indicated I *might* go into labor prematurely...although the odds are low 20-30% and the test is riddled with false positives.  Nonetheless we went and got two shots of steroids this weekend which will advance the girls' lungs about a week. 

I'll go for my next ultrasound on Thursday!  We're obviously praying things are holding strong with my body but we're also praying that the girls continue to grow at a safe rate.  If either girl gets too big, then they may have to induce labor also.  So those are our two prayers now, we'd be honored if you'd join us in them! 

Thanks! j

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Further notes on bedrest...

I have to send some big gratitude to my hubby for making my bedrest LOTS easier.  Besides taking great care of the kids, he keeps me entertained too.  We've been playing loads of Scrabble (on the ground of course, on my arm falls asleep mid-game).  He also made me this countdown sign which we change each day.  I think it's his countdown too. 

Love u m. 

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

You know you're on your on your fourth full week of bed rest when you've...

1. Reorg your pantry including making labels (don't worry, my Mom and Mike did the moving, I did the directing.  I like to think of myself as the creative genius behind it)
2. Reorg you "My Documents" into subfolders.  And your husbands.
3. Scored some serious deals on Cyber Monday.
4. Researched various theories on sofa slipcovers and twin nursing pillows.
5. Contemplated Asked for a personal laminator for Christmas since I'll be off work for a year. 
6. Begged various family members to bring you a fountain Coke.
7. Dreamed of how you could sneak out of the house when no one was home to go shopping.
8. Spent far too much time on your Pinterest account.

Actually, my dearest parents hosted the kiddos overnight last night and Mike and I had a 'inhouse' date night complete with carryout from Macaroni Grill.  Yum.  No kids and a night of peace and quiet.  :)  Perfecto.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

ultrasound pics

The large delay in posting ultrasound pictures is entirely the fault of our naughty scanner.  We're in a fight.  The scanner and me.

Here are so adorable ultrasound pics I know you'll love.  Truth is 3D ultrasounds can be a bit creepy.  But I didn't think these were too bad.  I love the little hand...

Monday, November 21, 2011

Big Bad Wolf...

So Sam thinks he's the big bad wolf.  For about two weeks now, he's been walking around the house saying,

"I'll puff and I'll puff and I'll blow Mommy (or Daddy or Addie) down."

Isn't that the cutest thing you've ever heard?  Sure he missed the "huff" part.  But I just can't get enough of it.  And neither can Addie or Mike, we all fake "blow over" each time he does it.  I have it on video, thank God.  Just out if Sam comes your way with a wolfy look in his eyes.  ;)


Twins are 2 lbs. 8 oz. and 2 lbs. 13 oz.  They're getting bigger!  I'm 28 weeks!  Here's praying for 30!  Thanks for all your prayers!  We are getting really close on to come...

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Thanksgiving dinner tips...

Just in case food network, martha stewart, or rachel ray leaves u's a tip from addie.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

4 Year Old Fashion

So after 10 days of house arrest, today was my first day out!  I got to go to the doctor's office (and maybe lunch, but I'll deny it if you ask...) so of course I went all out and put on maternity jeans and everything.  (I secretly love my pj pants)  I also put on a sweater too.  It's a pink thin sweater with a cowl neck.  Apparently, I don't wear cowl neck clothing a lot because all night Addie's been asking me why the hood is on the front of the sweater, and did I have it on backwards, by chance?

I have to admit, truth be told, cowl necklines really are a bit bizarre.  I think Addie has a right to question their place in the fashion world.  

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Down for the count...

So, true story is that I'm officially on house arrest bed rest.  Last Monday I went to my lovely OB specialist doc and they measured the girls...who are looking fancy and getting bigger.  (2lbs, 4oz and 2lbs, 1oz)  I, unfortunately, have been walking around too much and lifting things and teaching 25 small children thus resulting in my body not measuring quite where it should to avoid preterm labor.  So, I had to stop working.  And never leave the house again for 8 weeks.  Actually almost 7 now.  ;) 

We're so fortunate to have such amazing family and friends around who are coming out like crazy to help.  They help transport kids to and from the babysitter so I can lay around all day on my side and do nothing.  They've helped clean, bring meals, build large piece of furniture, fix leaky basements, fold laundry, clean gutters, entertain children, help my poor overworked husband and more.  And that's just week one.  We're so grateful and blessed.

I've decided I'm kind of like an old lady looking forward to my next doctor's appointment when I can leave the house again.  But don't worry about me too much.  My mom got me 3 new pairs of pajama pants, I figured out how to scrapbook on my side, my sister sends me hilarious emails each day, and I've gotten two loads of books and movies already.  I'll keep you updated on my exciting days.  If nothing else, my blog will be totally updated.  And I did get out of parent-teacher conferences and I have plenty of sick days to cover my 8 weeks of house arrest.  So all in all, I think I'll be cool.   When does a Mom of 2 get to go back to bed each day til like 9 or's virtually like my sorority days.  ish. 

I told my Mom and Mike, I'm pretty sure by the time the twins arrive I'll be raring to go and be up and doing things around the house I won't even care that I'm exhausted or that I have two newborns to care for simultaneously.  I don't think they buy it.  But I kind of do.  51 more days is still a long time to go. 

Send me your boring email forwards and funny things to do while laying on your side.  I'm game.  :)

Friday, November 11, 2011


Well, the room change is officially underway.  Nana and Papa treated the fam to this super deluxe ultra fancy bunk bed.  (check out the stairs-with storage-on the left)  We're super grateful.  The room transition is going shockingly well. The first few nights were a bit rough as the kiddos got used to each other, but overall, they're doing great.  Sam snuggles in his Thomas sheets and fancy blanket made by Nana (with dinosaurs).  Addie takes the top bunk with her fancy ballerina blanket. Nana also made lightweight blankies too.  They blankets coordinate and have brown matching sides too.  Uber-cute.  We painted half the room blue and have yet to pick a suitable quote to match Addie's tinkerbelle quote.  We'll come up with something.  Now, if only the twins sleep so well when we bring them home.  ;)  Night night, sleep tight...

11.11.11~a day which will live in infamy

Tonight our son Samuel informed us that he needed to go "pee pee on the potty."  It was a convenient time as he was currently airing out his diaper rash.  Bells rang and trumpets sounded across the kingdom as the young Sam took his first step into manhood.  Victory quickly melted into defeat as a small pool collected near the couch half an hour later.  Ah, but all great things begin with one step. 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Addie draws Mommy and Daddy

That's mike and I with our shirts on. I'm on the right. That round circle with the two dots in it is "my big belly with the two babies in it."

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How to Celebrate Halloween...

  1. Put on your best princess dress.
  2. Get "yuck stuff" out of pumpkin.
  3. Draw a face for Daddy to carve.
  4. Go to preschool for Halloween parade.  Sing songs.  
  5. Get dressed in Cinderella's gown with glass slippers.
  6. Go trick-or-treating with Daddy, Sammy, Grammy, & Papa.
  7. Celebrate loot.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Melt my heart

Well if that doesn't melt your heart...
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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Meet Eli...

Some of our dearest friends, Megan and Steve, just had their first baby last week.  Eli arrived on Thursday morning and has the cutest round face.  We went down to see them on Friday.  Megan and Steve were both beaming with happiness.  Eli is one lucky little boy to have joined the Abel family.  Here's some fav pics to tide you over until her blog (Abel Bodied, Abel Minded) is up and chock full of her own pics:

Saturday, October 29, 2011

not fair

Not fair that my beer area has been replaced by ensure nutrition shakes. Just saying....
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Friday, October 28, 2011


Even four kids later, it's still hard to pitch the creepy ultrasound pics that don't make the scrapbook.
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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Twin Update!

Apparently my scanner hates me...because I've been wanting to update the blog with my doctor visit from last week, including some stellar new ultrasound pics I got...but it's not working.  I'm sure it's operator error on my part and my poor darling husband has far more important things to do than fix it seeing as he's officially doing all the work at home while I grow two babies.  Seriously, like who has time to fix the scanner when he's so busy doing EVERYTHING else in our house.  He's amazing and I'm so lucky to have him on this adventure with me. 

So, the babies are doing great.  Last week (Tues) they were 1lb.4oz. and 1lb.5oz and looking lovelier than ever.  I'm 24 weeks now and the greatest shot of going into preterm labor with twins is between weeks 23-25, so I'm trying to take it real easy for the next two weeks and even taking off a day each week to try and ease things up.  I'm of course sick with a nasty cold that hasn't been too hard.  Mike and my Mom come to the rescue daily and are doing a ton to help me out.  We've had babysitting and meals from lots of friends and family and are praying that I can keep those babies inside until January.  If I can make it to 34 weeks we will be really excited.  That's only 10 weeks from now.  Let the countdown begin. 

And then maybe, I should figure out what to do with two newborns at once.  hmmm. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


Just so you know, today I'm craving:
1. donuts
2. a Bspot Shroomage burger (it's Michael Symon's restaurant in our hometown and it is aMAZing )  The shroomage burger has a huge portabella mushroom and blue cheese on it. 

Luckily, today is National Cookie Day.  Max and Erma's in Westlake delivered free cookies to our school in honor of it.  Let's say I might have eaten three.  One for each of us!  :)

Friday, October 14, 2011

Twin Kit...

So my sister and her hubby are totally fun and thoughtful and gave us this twin kit last weekend.  Hilarious.  Check it out:
Hilarious.  We loved it.  and them.  :)

And the twins are....

Just in case you haven't heard our happy news...
girls.  times 2.