Sunday, February 21, 2010

2 yr. Pictures

These are the girls' two year pictures. We are so excited about how they turned out!! The girls both did a fabulous job posing and smiling. The photographer was patient and worked to get the perfect shots!! It's so hard to believe how big our little girls are getting. Enjoy!!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Big Day and New Experiences

The girls in their big girl beds
Sweet Abby sleeping like a big girl in her bed

Rory cuddled with her zebra

Belle (Rory's zebra)

Tink (Abby's Lamb)

Tink and Belle
The girls' special Family Day treats

Toby is growing big

Sister snuggles in Abby's bed

For the girls' 2nd birthday, Michael and I decided that it was time to get each girl their own "big girl" bed. So, after doing some research and shopping for the perfect beds, we bought two twin storage beds. We decided to skip the whole toddler bed idea because they don't stay in them long enough to really justify the price (in our opinion). We also didn't want to use the crib toddler beds because Rory had already been doing dangerous stunts on her crib. We received both beds before the girls' birthday, but one of the beds was missing the screws and attachments. So, for the first week, the girls both slept in Abby's bed. It actually worked really well, but they still like having their own beds now that both are set up. We have been so proud of how well they made the transition. They go to bed and usually sleep for a good 10-12 hours at night. They are also still taking a good nap in the afternoon. They are such big girls!!!

As some of you might remember, Feb. 15, 2008 was the day that we finally got to bring little Abby home from the NICU. It was a tough stretch having one baby at home and one in the hospital. I wouldn't wish it on anyone. Last year, we made a point to celebrate the day that Abby got to come home and we were finally home together as a family. We call it our Family day and try to do something special. Last year, we all four went out to eat together. This year, Michael and I decided to do something that the girls would have fun doing. We decided to take them to the local Bear Mill and let them pick out and make their very own stuffed animals!! They had a really great time!! Abby picked a lamb. She really enjoyed getting to help stuff the lamb and then pick out clothes for her. She dressed the lamb in a fairy outfit. When they asked what she wanted to name it, she decided that "Tink" was the best name (that is one of her nicknames). Rory picked a zebra and decided to dress her in a pink princess outfit. She named her zebra "Belle." So, now we have two very special new stuffed toys in our family!! The girls love their new friends and sleep with them, play with them, take them with us in the car... etc. I think this year's Family Day was a success!! We look forward to celebrating it every year from now on!!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

2 yrs. Old

The big 2 yr. olds with their Gigi
Abby at her birthday dinner

Rory entertaining the family at her birthday dinner

Abby and Rory playing with their twin dolls from Aunt Ingrid and Uncle Jackson
Rory posing for the camera
Sweet Sister Hugs

Abby's pudding face
The girls sleeping together in the "big girl" bed
Rory's pudding face

Playing dress-up
(Look at that look on Abby's face... LOL)
Abby showing off her Barbie Dream Pony
Rory showing off her Barbie Dream Pony
Abby likes opening presents

Abby opening her birthday presents
Rory reading her birthday cards with Mommy

Ready for Presents

"We like cake!!"

Jennifer, Jacob and Jonathan Merriss

Rory blowing out her candle
"Where's the cake?"

Abby blowing out her candle

"We're ready for cake!!"
The Official Birthday Banner
Dora and Diego wish Abby and Rory a Happy 2nd Birthday
Rory's Dora the Explorer cake

Abby's Dora the Explorer cake
The girls turned 2 yrs. old this past Friday. I can't believe how fast these two years have flown by. It all seems like a blur at times. We had a big Dora the Explorer birthday party last Saturday for Rory and Abby with our friends and family. It was so much fun!! After finding out that a lot of the bakeries in town us egg whites in their filling, my mom and I decided we could make a decorate the girls' birthday cakes (Abby is allergic to eggs). The cakes actually turned out pretty good!! The girls were so excited to have a party and get to open presents!! They remembered Christmas and were ready for round-two. :) I think that they had a wonderful birthday party!!

We took the girls to see their pediatrician for their two year check-up this past Monday. Both girls got a pretty good clean bill of health. Rory is now 26 lbs. and is 34 in. tall. No surprise, the doctor was amazed at how much she is talking and carrying on full conversations. Her doctor told me that she has 5 yr. olds that she sees that can't speak as clearly and carry on complete conversations as well as Rory does. She's a chatterbox. Overall, she said that Rory is way above the developmental curve for someone her age. She walks, talks, sings, counts and can sing a good deal of her alphabet. She also gives and takes (when she wants to) directions with startling accuracy. Abby also received a pretty good report. She is now 21 lbs. 12.8 oz. and is 33 in. tall. The doctor is still not happy with her weight, but said that we will continue to search for treatments to help her put on the pounds. We will continue to monitor her weight every two weeks until the doctor is comfortable with her progress. As far as developmentally, Abby is apparently ahead of the curve, as well. She doesn't speak as much as Rory, but she is clear and concise when she does speak. Abby has always been a little on the shy side, so she doesn't feel the need to express herself quite as vocally as her sister. She, like Rory, can walk, talk, run, climb, sing, count and say part of her alphabet. The doctor said that there is absolutely nothing wrong with Abby developmentally, either and that she is also a very smart little girl!! Her pediatrician said that Abby speaks and expresses herself more like a 3-4 yr. old than a 2 yr. old. Both girls love to dance and sing. They are constantly making up new songs and wanting to dance. It's too adorable!! They love to color and play dress-up. They will change into several different outfits (and sometimes just a pull-up) and accessorize with their beads (from our friend, Nikki, in Louisiana), purses, hats, etc and put on a show for their Daddy and I. I think maybe Mommy has watched a little too much "America's Next Top Model" around them. LOL. They received "big girl" beds for their 2nd birthday from Mommy and Daddy. We were a little anxious about moving them from their cribs to twin size beds, but it was time. Rory had started tight-rope walking along the top railing of her crib. It scared me to death!! I was so worried that she was going to hurt herself, so Michael and I decided that it was time. So far, the girls have done absolutely amazing in their new bed. They do sleep together, but that doesn't bother me at all. They don't try to get out of bed even when they wake up before I go into their room in the morning. They will just sit patiently and play with one another until I go in to their room. Today, they took their first solo nap in their bed. It took them about 5 minutes to fall asleep and they took a good two hour nap!! I don't know if it will last, but we are enjoying how well they are making the transition.
There are so many new things happening in the lives of our precious angels. They grow and learn every single day. Michael and I are enjoying being parents more and more every day. We can't even express how blessed we feel to have two beautiful, vibrant and intelligent little girls!! We look forward to what God has in store for our family over the next year!!