Playmates for Life

Nothing is more touching than seeing the twins interact with each other. True best friends, they enjoy playing with one another more than anyone else. They seem to do it the most when I leave the room, so I sometimes walk away just so I can hide around the corner to see what they'll do. I recently got an AMAZING video of them playing in their tunnel and it is something we will cherish for a lifetime. The best part is hearing Riley laugh. This girl is a tough nut to crack when it comes to making her laugh, but her brother makes her laugh hysterically! Too cute for words...

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas...

It's no secret, there is a lot of holiday spirit in our house. And to now how have the twins to share it with, well it just makes the season even brighter. At the beginning of the month we put on some Christmas music, decked our halls and put up the tree with the help of the kiddos. They may not have a clue what's going on, but the sparkle in their eyes as they experience the magic of it all is a sight to see.

To see a montage of the twins getting in the Christmas spirit for the first time, click here.

Chitter Chatter

The twins have been chattering up a storm lately! Each with their own unique sounds, they are VERY vocal and express themselves all the time now. 

Here is a video from playing outside the other day. They were feeling particularly chatty so I wanted to catch it on camera. You can hear Riley with her "ooh" and "whoa" and River is talking to himself sounding like an angry Asian man or something! LOL

13 Months Update

It has been a crazy few weeks for development here at the Hayman house!

Since their birthday this is all that's happened...

River is doing an excellent job mimicking adults. I've been steadily working with him on some fine-motor actions and it's finally paying off! It started with clapping his hands, which is now one of his go-to moves. When he claps we say, "yay" and he lights up with the biggest smile. If we say, "high five" and hold up our hand he brings his palm to ours and laughs. Even if we hold our hand up from across the room he'll hold his up right back. It's pretty amazing! He has also learned to "find Mommy's nose" and as of a few days ago he figured out how to wave. (Although he hasn't linked that to goodbye quite yet, so for now he just randomly waves from time to time). As a bonus when I ask for a hug he throws his arms around my neck, which of course makes me melt into a puddle. <3 He definitely values praise. Every time he does one of these little parlor tricks he turns and looks at us as if to get approval. It's so endearing. 

While River is not officially saying any words, he does communicate effectively. He says, "Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah" when he's unhappy with something, growls if we take something away and squeals with delight when he's amused. He also babbles to himself when he's playing independently, which is quite entertaining!

Riv is exponentially more mobile lately. He started scooting for the first time only a few weeks ago and not too long after that he started crawling! He still tends to revert back to bunny hopping on his butt so we have to continually put him in the crawling position to correct him. Whenever I do I say, "crawl," and sure enough as of this week he has learned that command! Now when he starts to scoot on his butt I say, "crawl" and he gets down and starts crawling! It is truly astonishing how quickly they can learn something. He's still getting the hang of being on hands and knees, but is definitely leaps and bounds further along than he was only a few short weeks ago.

While River is still working to catch up on his gross motor skills he is zooming ahead with fine motor. He is showing signs that he loves puzzle-type toys and activities that require concentration. For example, he LOVES playing with the ball ramp and knows how to put the ball in the top hole and smack it down so it rolls down the ramp. He does it over and over like a pro! He is also getting good at the shape sorter, which his physical therapist says is pretty impressive for his age! Go Riv! He can do the cylinder and square and we are currently working on the triangle. :-)

Riley is making progress as well. She had started to switch from scooting to crawling on her hands and knees and within a few days she was crawling like a champ! Now she's like a little bolt of lightening moving through the house. Actually, we call her "Hurricane Riley" because every room she goes in she leaves a mess! Her newest thing is emptying baskets, bins and anything else she can get her hands on. It's pretty much reverse cleaning! (Like I didn't have enough work to do, LOL).  She's also really good at pulling herself up to stand (and does so on everything she can, including us!). 

When it comes to language, Riley is saying "mama" when she's around me and "dada" when she's with G. She has also added a few new words to her repertoire, although she doesn't say them frequently. As with everything else it is when she feels so inclined to say them. She has said "River" on multiple occasions and has repeated "Pop-Pop," "dressed," "red," hello" "pants" and a few other words recently. It's funny though, out of the blue she'll repeat a word back almost perfectly, but only once! Then she'll just keep babbling. It's as if it just slips out and she doesn't know how to do it again. The words she says most are "ooh" "whoa" and "wow." At first we weren't sure where she was getting it from, but then we realized it was from us! Every time we show them something new we say, "oooh look at that, wow. Whoa how cool" and things of that nature. Well sure enough she knows exactly when to say it because now when we show them something new she does the same thing! Case in point, last week when we took her to see some Christmas lights outside she said, "whoa.... wow wow wow." How sweet! It just melts our hearts. There is no doubt she's definitely trying to learn to say words. When we talk to her she'll curiously put her hands on our mouths while we're speaking and move her mouth at the same time (almost like a goldfish LOL), clearly trying to figure out how we're making the sounds. She's so inquisitive. I have a feeling she'll be the first one to talk. And if she's anything like Mommy she'll be a little chatterbox! She definitely wants to do what the adults do. She always wants to drink water with a straw (she can do it with a regular one!) and whenever someone laughs she immediately starts "ha ha ha ha-ing" right back. She's not sure what's funny, but she wants to join in!

Riley still has an affinity for books and favors them over any toy, hands down. When playing independently she's often flipping through the pages of a book, carefully studying the pictures and fully engaged. Lately she has been pulling out EVERY book and then casually starts flipping through all of them while laying on her tummy. It's too cute!! She even went so far as to crawl down to our home office room and pulled all our grown-up books off the shelves to flip through. I think it's safe to say we have a little book worm on our hands! 

Her love for music is also flourishing. When she's not enthralled in a book she is playing with one of her instruments (her current fav being a dog-shaped guitar that plays music and also guitar chords when you strum it!). She crawls over to it, hits the buttons to play songs and dances to the beat. Lately she's waving her arms and hands in the air. It looks like she's trying to cast a spell! LOL It wasn't until I started singing Itsy Bitsy Spider again (I do sign language along with it) that I realized the arm motions she is doing is the sign for "rain." As soon as I start singing the song she starts in on the arm gestures. Too cute!! Waiting for the day when she starts signing some of the other gestures I do with them. (I currently do "eat" "more" "milk" and "all done," as you are only supposed to do a few at a time until they can do it back, then you can add more). 

Riley's hair has been growing like crazy, but only on the top of her head! So rather than have her sporting the Elvis pompadour look, she's been rocking some pigtails lately and looking rather adorable!

The twins have an unspoken language that only they understand. I've watched them switch bottles on countless occasions without making a peep. They climb over each other and swap toys all the time and neither seem to be phased by it. But rest assured no one else could get away with that! One thing we've been having fun doing with them is getting them all wound up. It doesn't always happen, the timing (and their moods) has to be just right. But when it does it is HILARIOUS! The other night I would inch toward River saying "chug a chug a chug a chug a" and then say, "choo choo" and tickle him and he'd laugh and squeal with delight, each time screeching louder. Riley was staring at us like she was missing out so I did it to her from across the room, not even touching her when I "choo choo'd" and she started shrieking with excitement, too! The two of them acted like they were so excited they couldn't contain themselves. It was hilarious! They get like that when it's time for bed, too. It's like they need to get out that last bit of energy before shutting it off for the night. 

Another new development is how they are getting around in their cribs. Now that they are more mobile it sometimes takes a little longer to initially fall asleep. They sit up and chatter or pull themselves up to a stand. At first we would go in there and adjust them but that soon became an ongoing game of whack-a-mole... we'd get one down and the other pops up and so on! So now we just let them stand up and giggle and before long they both lay down and go to sleep.

We've toyed with the idea of switching them to Montessori floor beds if they start trying to climb out of the cribs or they become dangerous. We'd just have to clear their room of pretty much everything to ensure they'd be safe, but we'll cross that bridge if and when we come to it.

They are still sleeping straight through the night- around 11 hours (thankfully!) and napping once or twice a day, although not for very long. It's always a mad dash to get as much housework and cooking done as I possibly can but it's never enough time!

Well, that's all for now. Looking forward to holiday fun with the twins this month!

If you'd like to see a short little montage video of some of the new skills the twins have mastered last month, click here. 

The Twins' 1st Birthday Cake Smash Photo Shoot

Having seen so many adorable cake smash photos out in Cyberspace (and given the fact that I am a picture-taking maniac), I decided I couldn't pass up this literally once in a lifetime chance to do a 1st birthday cake smash photo shoot with the twins. However, like with all things, I knew I wanted to do this as creatively as possible on a low budget. Since hiring a photographer was out of the question, I borrowed a friend's camera that took amazing, quick-succession pictures. I scoured Etsy for cute cake smash outfits that wouldn't break the bank and I had another friend make whatever style giant cake smash cupcakes I wanted at an incredibly thrifty price. We planned to do the photo shoot the day after their birthday party since all four grandparents and my sister-in-law were already here and voila!... all the makings for an incredibly fun photo shoot. And boy did it turn out better than I imagined!

We moved the electric fireplace out of the way (hey, I live in FL, what do you expect?!) so we would have a blank wall in the background, got them dressed, sat them in front of their cakes and started snapping as many pictures as possible. The result? Some fabulous photos that we will cherish for a lifetime!

The Twins' First Halloween Costumes

Sorry I'm a little behind on my blog, but it has been a hectic few weeks! I'll try to catch up this week, starting with the twins' Halloween costumes...

We were planning on taking River and Riley to a pumpkin patch around the corner from our house to do a costume photo shoot, but realized the odds of it going smoothly were slim to none. We wanted the twins to be comfortable so we decided to take the pictures at home. And we are SO glad we did! They turned out better than we could have imagined! The best part was capturing their reaction to seeing each other in their costumes. They were so perplexed and curious! It was a wonderful and memorable experience and I'm elated we got it on film. :-D

If you'd like to see a montage video of the photo shoot click here.

The Twins' "My Gym" Experience

I'm always actively searching for fun things to do with the twins. Unfortunately, a lot of the classes out there are pretty pricey when it comes to having two babies enrolled. Luckily, a lot of these places offer free one time trial classes so I have definitely been taking advantage of that! So far, a place called "My Gym" has been the best. It was a REALLY cool experience for the babies. They had some pretty amazing equipment there and some things I could never have even imagined! (Like a zipline that sends the babies zipping across the room!). Pop-Pop came out to visit so he could come with us and help out since it's hard to do things like that when I'm by myself. Good times were had by all!

Click here to see all the fun things they did at the baby gym!

11 Month Photo Shoot

I am SO happy with the way this month's photo turned out. I went with a Fall theme (my favorite time of year... which makes me really miss living up north with all the beautiful changing leaves!) and the twins had a blast playing with the leaves and little pumpkins. 

To see the photo shoot in action click here.

11 Months Update

Well, this started out as the 10 months update, but as the twins have steadily become more active I have less and less time to work on things like this. So, since we're now hitting the 11 month mark I figured I might as well combine the two.

I've had several moms tell me that from this point on the twins will progress exponentially faster, which is what they experienced when their babies were around this age. And boy did they hit the nail right on the head. It seems as though the twins are growing so fast and always doing something new! It has been such a joy watching them grow and change with each passing day. And while it's wonderful and exciting to see, it's also a reminder of how quickly time flies and just how precious every moment is. We truly treasure each second we have with them.

These past two months we have watched the twins' personalities continue to unfold and shine brighter than ever (which I'm sure will happen a little every month for years to come, but it's still fascinating to witness!). They are getting so big, especially River. He is looking more like a little boy and less like a baby lately.

So let's start with him. Our sensitive, lovey little guy now weighing 20 pounds! About a month ago G and I were talking about how it seems like he's become quite fussy lately, but when we stumbled across old videos from when we first brought them home we quickly realized that he's always been this way! And, in fact, it reminded us of how he was even like that in the NICU. When the nurses would change his diaper he'd get so worked up his face would get beet red and his heart rate would shoot up and set off alarms on his monitor! So now we realize it's just his personality. He can be the happiest smiley baby with an infectious belly laugh who loves to hug, but the second he's uncomfortable, tired or hungry he will most certainly express his displeasure! 

To see Riv have a meltdown over dropping his cup click here.

As you know, he has had bad reflux issues for pretty much his whole life thus far. After lots of testing and specialists the bottom line was that he would "eventually grow out of it." But in the meantime he's suffered so much. We've tried 3 different medicines (which I'm not thrilled about) and none of them helped. Formula still poured out of him, sometimes hours after his bottle. The pediatrician finally gave us the go ahead to get off Neosure and on whatever other formula we choose. We're keeping Riley on it since she does fine with it and we still have a lot of cans left over, but last month I switched River to Similac Sensitive and I'm happy to report that it's made a world of difference! No more spitting up!! I did do a little test where I didn't give him his meds for a day on the new formula to see if he wouldn't need it, but unfortunately he started spitting up again so it looks like it's the combination of meds and special formula that is doing the trick. I'm so thrilled for him to not have to suffer any longer. Since then, he's been able to be on his tummy for longer periods of time so that's a bonus! However, he is still not crawling, or attempting to for that matter. Our pediatrician assured us that some babies just like being on their backs more because they have more range of motion with their arms and legs and according to the Physical Therapist and Development Specialist he's being (for lack of a better word) lazy. He prefers to lay back and relax as opposed to his sister who is Go Go Go (like her Mommy! LOL). However, as of this last week he's been rotating to reach for toys while on his belly which is at least a step in the right direction. We will continue working with him and pushing him to get his butt moving!

He is doing much better with sitting up now. He stays sitting up for extended periods of time without intentionally throwing himself back like he was doing to try and lay back down. So it's definitely progress! 

What he DOES like to do is stand up! We discovered a few weeks ago that he enjoys being up on his feet so we hold him up a little each day. As a result, his legs are getting stronger each day and now he can stand straight up with us only lightly holding his hands! At first we started with him holding on to something in front of him (like a chair or ottoman). 

Now that we have the pull-up bar we've been working with him to pull himself up and he's picking it up at lightening speed! He loves it so much, we literally have to pry his fingers off the bar when it's time to stop. At this rate he'll be walking before he ever crawls!

Click here to see Riv pull himself up on the bar.

One thing is for sure, the kid will steal your heart with one flash of his smile. It doesn't take much to get him to giggle, and his gut laugh is absolutely infectious!

To see me cracking River up click here.

He's definitely had a rough month though. He was sick with an upper respiratory infection AND cut THREE more teeth! He was sick for about a week, and although he remained in good spirits he had a nasty cough that kept him up at night. Plus mouth has to be killing him with all those teeth coming in. His second bottom one popped up followed by one top front and then the other. His poor gums are so swollen. I can't believe he's going to have four teeth soon. He's growing up too fast!

On to Miss Riley Jeanne. This girl is something else! Looking at her you can clearly see her gears are always turning. It's like on some level she's analyzing everything going on around her. Any little sound in the house and she's quickly looking in that direction with a quizzical look on her face trying to figure out what it was. She is definitely a curious one and now that she's on the move she tries to get into EVERYTHING. 

While she isn't crawling on all fours just yet, she has mastered her army crawl where she drags her (sometimes crossed!) legs and predominately uses her arms to pull herself around. And quickly at that! She goes from thing to thing and seems to enjoy her travel time the most. 

To see Riley army crawling click here.

Another thing she has been doing lately is dancing. (Again, just like her Mommy!). As soon as she hears music, whether it's a song on the radio or even someone humming a tune, she starts rocking side to side in time with the music. It's the cutest thing ever! She lights up like a Christmas Tree any time she hears music. We'll definitely have to put her in some music classes before long!

To see Riley dancing to her favorite song click here.

I've mentioned before her love for books, and that love keeps on growing! If I grab a book and hold it up to show her she perks right up, pushes up on her hands, gets a huge smile on her face and sometimes even lets out a yelp. It's truly amazing! She is very interactive with the books by touching the pages, making noises and loves the kind where you can lift different flaps. She can do that very well. It's wonderful to see her early literacy skills develop and I will be sure to foster that in the upcoming months and years.

To watch how excited Riley gets during story time click here.

With the combination of her feisty personality and immense curiosity, I have a feeling our sweet girl is going to be keeping us on our toes!

In other news, they are both still sleeping soundly through the night (from about 7:30p-7:30a) which is great for us, however, it would be even better if we would actually go to bed early and get the much-needed sleep we need! But since it's the only time G and I get together, we tend to stay up later than we should.

The twins are now both drinking from trainer cups which means they are done with bottles! 

It is a bittersweet feeling. We are happy to see them learning new skills but it is one step closer to them moving away from being a baby and on to being a toddler. Not that it's a bad thing... G and I are just missing the days when they were only a few pounds and would sleep curled up on us for hours. <3 

I've been continuing to work with them on drinking from a glass. I'm still using shot glasses since their hands are small. They get to practice a few times a day with water.

On top of that, they have also learned how to drink from a straw! I sometimes give them their water in their straw cups to mix things up...

Snapped a pic of Riley drinking out of Daddy's water bottle. She was sitting on his lap and just grabbed the straw and helped herself to a few sips. She's something else!

They have been interacting a lot more lately, too. It's obvious they are comfortable with each other with Riley climbing over River always curiously playing with his ear and both of them drape their legs over the other as if they were lounging on a piece of furniture. Riley thinks her brother is hilarious. He can just flap a toy around and she will stare at him all wide eyed and giggle. They absolutely have a connection. It is awesome to watch and I know it will get even more fun as they get older.

     Besties! <3

The next post they will be ONE YEAR. I can't believe it! 

First Month of Solids (Baby Led Weaning style!)

It has been a eventful month of eating for River and Riley! Ever since the pediatrician gave the go ahead to start feeding them three squares a day plus a snack (followed by a bottle), I have been on a mission to tantalize the twins taste buds. As mentioned in previous posts, we are doing a mix of Baby Led Weaning and following some suggestions from the Canadian Pediatric Society; (here is a link if you're interested:

And it's not because my hubby is a dual citizen, I just really liked the fact that their guidelines are research based and very up-to-date. It also falls in line with Baby Led Weaning with recommending starting babies with textured foods instead of purees and jumping right into the high-allergen foods early on (except for peanuts). So we did just that... jumped right in. Much to my surprise it is working marvelously. The babies have seemed to like everything I've made for them! It would appear Riv likes meat more than Riley (we've been curious as to what their food preferences would be since G is a carnivore and I've been a veg-head for life!). River always goes straight for the chicken/beef/fish etc. right off the bat and Riley grabs veggies/fruit/pasta first. And Riley, the little stinker, when she doesn't want something on her tray she will grab it, hold it over the side of the high chair and drop it on the floor. I've also caught her putting it on her brother's tray! She's a sneaky girl, that one. LOL

I try to make meals that I can portion and freeze for future feedings. It is a new and foreign concept to me, but I have been hitting it hard and it really pays off. I now have a freezer full of options and I'm always trying to add to it. It's a lot of prep work I have to do when I'm lucky enough for the twins to take longer than a 15 minute nap, but it's so worth it for the convenience of only needing to heat up a ready-made meal. :-) I've also found a lot of baby/toddler finger food recipes that are chock full of shredded veggies, in pasta and even meatloaf balls! Yes. I said meatloaf balls. 

I have kept track of everything the twins have tried this month and I am super proud of them that they have tried (and seem to like!) so many foods. Riley's favorites so far are watermelon, grapes and any kind of pasta. Riv doesn't seem to dig fruit that much, although he'll eat it for the most part and he really likes beef, cheese and omelets. Neither seem to keen on avocado (which seems crazy because I loooove it). It will be interesting to see if their tastes change as they get older and hopefully all this food sampling will lead to toddlers who aren't picky. We shall see!

Here is a list of everything they have tried this month...

FRUITS:  watermelon, peaches, blueberries, nectarine, prunes, pears, papaya, apples, banana, raspberries, cantaloupe, kiwi, strawberries, pineapple, mango, grapes.

VEGGIES: sweet potato, butternut squash, eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, onion, potato, carrots, spinach, kale, avocado, tomato, green beans, broccoli, pumpkin, 
spaghetti squash, mushrooms, golden beets.

PROTEIN: eggs, beef, chicken, fish, tempeh, tofu, black beans, garbanzo beans, cannellini beans, lentils, cheese, yogurt

MISC: french toast &banana toast (both with 100% wheat bread), strawberry & blueberry pancakes (gluten free mix), hummus, organic waffles, oatmeal, many different kinds of whole wheat or gluten free pasta dishes, homemade lentil croquettes and veggie fritters

SEASONINGS: curry, coriander, basic, garlic, tumeric, oregano, garam masala, chili powder, parsley, black pepper

Looking forward to more adventures with food for the twins!

Cry Me a River

So there's this video app that makes a montage video each day of all the pictures and videos you take. (Awesome app!) So you have no idea what it's going to look like until it's done. This one inadvertently turned out hilarious! G and I watched it over and over laughing so hard we were crying! It chose a video G took of River crying during dinner one night (he didn't nap and was cranky- which is pretty much par for the course with Riv) and the app chose to put it to upbeat music, which makes it all the more hysterical.

Play Video: My September 5th, 2014

Created with Magisto ( on September 5, 2014. Turn your video and photos into beautifully edited movies, perfect for sharing. It's free, quick, and easy as pie!

Pacifier Showdown

While our daughters were playing yesterday, my friend and I saw this happening and wanted to see how it played out...

Riley is determined to steal her friend's pacifier for herself (even though she doesn't even use them!). It goes back and forth with them swiping it out of each other's mouths... At one point Riley growls at her, later followed by her friend getting frustrated, Riley tormenting her by hitting the pacifier on her leg before popping it back in her own mouth, and ultimately leads to her friend putting her foot down... literally! Which finally gets Riley to back off and leave her alone.

My daughter is a little trouble maker! 
Oy vay!

It's Chow Time!

Had a long chat with our pediatrician yesterday and she said she wants them eating more food to start drinking less formula (with the goal of being entirely on solids and off formula by their 1st birthday). She also said no more middle of the night feedings- it's bad for their teeth/gums and a habit we needed to break anyway- and that if they're eating enough throughout the day they should sleep through the night. (We had been waking them up to feed right before G and I went to bed each night). So yesterday I fed them lots of healthy, real food throughout the day followed by formula after each meal, as their dr suggested. And sure enough they slept straight through the night! 12 hours! Wow! Let's hope it wasn't a fluke!

Looking forward to going to Whole Foods today to get lots of yummy organic food to try out some new recipes for them! They seem to love to eat! (Especially Riley, she goes to town the second I put food on her tray!)

This was their first real lunch! (I was just giving them whole fruits or veggies before). Chicken meatballs with a chunk of steamed sweet potato with a little curry seasoning on it. (It's now suggested to add seasoning when trying out new foods so they are flavorful and not bland- except no adding salt or sugar). They totally dug in! 

And their first real dinner! Black bean sweet potato hash with fajita seasoning and a side of mashed peas. River is a much neater eater. (Ha, neater eater. Sounds funny!). He eats slowly and carefully. Riley, on the other hand, starts shoveling the food in the second it hits her tray and gobbles it all up wanting more!

9 Months Update

Once again another month has come and gone and I'm still in shock at how quickly time is passing. I guess I need to get used to that, but I'm sure I never will. It all goes by in a blur. It probably doesn't help that I'm living a perpetual "Groundhog Day" scenario where each day is pretty much the same and one day blends into the next. However, I'm in no way complaining. I wouldn't trade this for anything in the world. It's just funny how when you're working, you're working for the weekend, and now that I'm not I'm pretty much doing the same- both circumstances being that it's the time we get to spend as a whole family. Don't get me wrong, I cherish every moment I spend with the babies all week, but nothing compares to the time we all get to be together. I guess that's just the way life goes. Anywho, the twins are doing well.  Hard to believe they are 9 months old! (A little over 6 months adjusted). This will probably wind up being a pretty long post, but I didn't get a chance to do an update last month and there's lots of exciting stuff happening lately!

Let's start with River. Coming in at a whopping 17lbs 6oz and 26.5 inches, he's all muscle with broad shoulders (which will come in handy for water skiing someday!). He is certainly built like a boy! Riv's had his share of ups and downs these past few months. For starters, his reflux flared up pretty badly. The poor little guy was spitting up multiple times after feeding, sometimes even HOURS later, and every few days he would projectile vomit. He was really suffering and it affected his mood daily. We saw a GI specialist who changed his meds and had an upper GI xray done on him. Thankfully it is nothing major, just a bad case of reflux that he supposedly will outgrow. The past couple weeks he's been spitting up less and seems to be in much better spirits! Hopefully it will keep getting better from here.

River struggles with tummy time. We went back and forth trying to figure out why.... If it was his tummy, his neck, something else. We've finally come to realize it's most likely that he just doesn't like it. He can stay on his tummy for short periods of time but then starts getting upset. So that's something we're working on along with his physical therapist.

As for his development, while he's a little behind with his gross motor skills (larger muscle groups used in crawling, rolling over, sitting up), he is doing well with his fine motor skills (doing things with his hands, mouth movements, hand-eye coordination etc). He is good at grabbing toys, switching things from one hand to the other and he loves to kick. He is getting closer to sitting up on his own. He can sit up for a little bit on his own him but then topples over. He's getting there though! We just have to get him more comfortable with tummy time in order for him to eventually learn how to crawl.

Personality wise, he's definitely a sweetheart. When we pick him up, he throws his arms around our necks giving us a big hug. He can be a bit timid with things at first, almost cautious, but then eventually gets a bit braver. For example if I show him something he is hesitant about reaching out to touch it at first. Also the first time we took him to the pool you could tell he was a little nervous but then once he got the hang of it he really enjoyed it.  In fact, being in the pool seems to be one of his favorite activities! He has fun in his raft, but he really loves when we hold him and pull him through the water. He kicks his feet like a pro and smiles a lot. We may have ourselves a waterbug! Good thing, with a name like River and a family full of water skiers!

He's definitely a mama's boy (which of course I don't mind!) and he sure does love to nap. He's pretty easy in that way, letting you know when he's tired and he'll go right down. He's a chatty little guy, and does a fair share of babbling. More and more he's pronouncing consonants when he babbles and he gets especially talkative when he hears one of us on the phone. It's like he wants in on the conversation too! He likes to hear himself talk and sometimes just wants to see how loud he can get! River's a happy boy and our favorite thing is making him giggle. He has this belly laugh like nothing I've ever heard!

Then there is Riley. At 16lbs 8oz and 26in, this girl is a pistol! She is  strong-willed and determined. A real go getter and much more independent than her brother. It doesn't matter what you have in front of her, she reaches out and grabs for it or slaps it with her hand. She'll shut our phones off when were on them, slaps our computer keyboard if we're typing and steals toys right out of her brother's hands! 

She wants every toy for herself and at the same time. She's a little toy hoarder! And usually will go through a bin of toys taking each one out to gnaw on for a minute before moving to the side and grabbing the next one! 

Here Riley tries to steal River's toy. He pulls it away but in the end she shakes and hits his hand until he drops it then takes the toy for herself! I'm definitely going to have to teach this girl how to share!

Riley is babbling like crazy lately and getting really good at moving around on her tummy. She isn't crawling yet, but is well on her way. She can commando crawl if you put your hands behind her feet for her to push off. She's able to pivot and go around in a complete 360 any which way to play with whatever toys she likes. Currently, the piano is her favorite..

She isn't as fond of the water as river. It's not that she doesn't like it, she just seems indifferent to the whole experience anytime we take her. For someone who is usually all smiles it's almost impossible to get her to smile while in the pool. Not sure why that is, or that it will necessarily always be that way, but it's just the way she is at the moment. She just doesn't seem as excited about it as Riv.

She's starting to notice when I'm paying attention to River. If I pick him up she'll stop what she's doing and spin herself around toward me and start slapping my leg and whining as if to say, "Hey, how come he gets to be on Mommy? I want to be on Mommy, too!" It's pretty funny to see!

Riley seems to need less sleep than Riv, and therefore takes shorter naps. Sometimes she'll only nap for 20 minutes! That doesn't help Mommy since it's the only time cooking, cleaning, prepping bottles, etc. can be done. What can I say, she's a feisty one that will surely be keeping us on our toes!

The twins have started solid foods as of the month ago. We are doing Baby Led Weaning with them, which means no purées. They get large pieces of cut up fruits and vegetables soft enough for them to gnaw on with their gums. So far they have liked everything, particularly watermelon.

Gnawing on a steamed carrot. Riley adores her Daddy <3

Mmm Banana!

Organic oatmeal with mashed up strawberries...

Anytime we are drinking ice water the twins grab at our glasses wanting to drink from them. We are hoping to avoid using sippy cups so this is good practice for them at an early age! :-)

I've been making sensory toys for the twins lately (bottles, bags and bins) which they seem to really love!

They are noticing each other more and more. They will touch each other's faces play with each other's feet and pet each other's hair. It won't be long before they're able to really communicate with one another. That's going to be so much fun!  It will be interesting to see how their personalities develop and grow and also how their relationship blossoms.

G and I are also doing well. We are having a blast being the parents of twins. Sure it can be exhausting, but also so rewarding. It's made our relationship even stronger as we truly appreciate how hard we both work at what we do each day and we are always striving to be the best versions of ourselves. We give each other a break after work- Some days G gets to go running and others I get to go to dance class. It helps us unwind and energize at the same time, which fuels us to continue being able to put all of ourselves into raising the kids. I'm really excited that this week he home taking a Staycation and is home for 10 days in a row! A much needed break for both of us :-)

That's all for now. Hard to believe only three more months until the twins will be a year old already! Craziness! In the meantime,  I'll keep you up-to-date on their development.

Here are the pics from their 9 Month photo shoot I did with them: