Hike

by Kayte

As always we tried to make the most of our weekend by getting out for an adventure. Tree People was closed for an event, so we went to our other favorite: Franklin Canyon. Max & Lola are getting more sure-footed and energetic. They were both able to walk the entire way around the lake (with lots of hand-holding). They loved watching the ducks and turtles in the pond, and we all loved being outside.

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The Gym

by Kayte

Last January we first started doing physical therapy at the gym. A year ago Lola wanted nothing to do with the swing, trampoline, rings, ropes, slides, or mats. Fast forward to 2015 and it’s amazing to see the progress she (and Max) have made. PT is now by far their favorite day.

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HRIF Clinic

by Kayte

It’s been 9 months since our last NICU follow-up clinic. This was our last visit since Max & Lola will “graduate” at age 3. It felt like such a celebration. We saw many of the same therapists and doctors who have been following us all along, and they were all so impressed with the progress Max & Lola have made. Most of our time was spent outside on the playground instead of in the tiny patient rooms. It felt like they were such big kids. Max & Lola have come such a long way from our first visit when we were weighed down with oxygen tanks and fears. I saw overwhelmed parents who were there for the first time with tiny babies, and it’s nice to feel so far removed from that. When asked if we had any questions or concerns about them, my answer was “no”! What a great feeling.

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The Boss

by Kayte

A week after Max & Lola were born, Brody went to a Bruce Springsteen concert. He bought souvenir t-shirts for the kids which we kept in their isolettes throughout our NICU stay. Since then the shirts have been tucked away in a drawer in the nursery (still wrapped in the biohazard bags).

This week Lola found, unwrapped, and insisted on wearing said t-shirts. Max & Lola still have some growing to do before the shirts fit, but man have these kids come a long way since then.

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The Boys

by Kayte

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Carousel

by Kayte

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Swing n’ Slide

by Kayte

Ever since our last park play date I’ve been more adventurous about taking the kids out by myself. I found another enclosed park really close to our house and we’ve gone a couple times this past week.

Max and Lola are both really into hanging lately – they get to do it all the time in PT at the gym (rings, bars, etc.) so now they try to do it everywhere else (including the towel bar in our bathroom). They were both super excited to discover the hanging bar at the top of the slide. I don’t quite trust Lola’s ability yet, but Max sure got the “hang” of things…




Monkey Girl Too

by Kayte

Lola has now adopted Max’s unnerving style of climbing into the high chair over top of the tray. I’m outwardly disapproving, but secretly impressed.

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Twinkle Twinkle

by Kayte

We have our own version of this song which features the moon. Probably because the moon is much easier to see in LA than the stars.

Twinkle twinkle little moon
How I wonder what you doing
Up above the world so high
Like a diamond in the sky
Twinkle twinkle little moon
How I wonder what you doing

So Lola’s singing some version of that. She especially likes the part about diamonds.


Teeth Cleaning

by Kayte

Max & Lola had their six-month checkup at the dentist today. Everything looked great; good brushing and no cavities. Poor Maxie has two chipped teeth from that bad fall last summer (which we had already noticed) but the teeth are healthy and not too sharp so there’s nothing to be done about it.

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Tree People

by Kayte

On Sunday we went for a hike at Tree People – a nonprofit organization dedicated to planting trees around Los Angeles. Their headquarters is in the middle of Coldwater Canyon Park which has lots of great trails. Everything is so well-maintained that Max & Lola were able to walk by themselves the whole time. Max was on the lookout for alligators (maybe he thought we were at the zoo?) while Lola just wanted to run and jump.

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Lola ABCs

by Kayte

Between the two of them we almost have the entire alphabet!




Drip Drop

by Kayte

After a couple days of dribbles, Max finally caught up to his sister (quantity-wise at least). I still wouldn’t say we’re potty training in earnest, but at least it’s a couple less diapers to change per day.

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Zip Zoom

by Kayte

We are still totally loving our new-new OT. She is so good at getting the kids to focus on tricky fine motor tasks and giving them fun homework.

This week Max was to work on his vertical (zip) and horizontal (zoom) lines while Lola’s task was to draw in a circle (ring around the rosy). While this seems like just fun nonsense drawing, it actually hones Max & Lola’s pre-writing skills. To be able to write, you need to be able to draw straight & curved lines, and copy/imitate a figure.

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Transition Meeting

by Kayte

Today we had our transition meeting with the local school district to talk about preschools. Up until now Max & Lola’s therapy services have all been coordinated through a county program. When they turn three, those services transition to the school district in the form of a preschool program. Max & Lola will undergo an intensive evaluation with the school’s own therapists and teachers (child development, PT, OT, speech, PE, psychologist, etc.) to determine their ongoing needs. Based on that evaluation they may (or may not) be placed in a preschool program with a specially-trained teacher. The therapists would come into the classroom and work one-on-one during the school day.

Part of me just wants Max & Lola to graduate from all this therapy and be declared “caught up,” while the other part of me wants them to continue to get all the support they can get. We will know more after the evaluations. Either way I’m starting to get really excited about the thought of them going to preschool. Not JUST because I will have a few FREE mornings a week (although that concept is awesomely mind-boggling) but also because they just seem ready. I know Max will love it, and I think it will be very good for Lola’s growth. It’s the next big chapter in their childhood.


Pee Pee in the Potty

by Kayte

We haven’t been doing much in the way of potty training lately. After reading a bit more on the subject, Max & Lola weren’t showing any of the readiness signs. And after watching a few friends go through the ordeal, I decided that diapers are really not that bad.

This past week Max has been telling us every time he pees or poos in his diaper, and walking around all funny until we change him, so I thought that might be our cue. He was sitting on the potty tonight when Lola asked to try too. She sat down, peed right away, and stood up all proud. I couldn’t believe it – our first direct hit! I figured it was just a fluke…until she did it again later in the evening. Everyone says girls catch on quicker.

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Drum Circle

by Kayte

We had a rare rainy weekend here in LA, so we decided to take the kids for some indoor fun at local music company that hosts weekly drum circles for kids. It’s held in a big warehouse with shakers, tambourines, and drums of all shapes & sizes. Kids are encouraged to thump, dance, and sing. Max was fascinated by everything going on around him. Lola was a little antsy and more interested in wandering around than drumming. Overall it was a very cool experience; one I think we should definitely do again.

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Diggers Go

by Kayte

On Christmas Eve the biggest tree on our street was knocked over by extreme winds. Two weeks later, the city finally came to clean it up. We spent a lot of time in the driveway watching the chainsaws and big machines. It was a two-day job, so Max & Lola had a chance to explore the front loader that was left parked overnight. Big-time toddler entertainment.

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Twins Playdate

by Kayte

My twin-mom-friend Michelle found a great park for us to visit where the playground is safely enclosed. It’s hard to take multiples out by ourselves, but today we were able to let the kids run free while we relaxed a little. It was a beautiful day to soak up the sunshine.

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Two Inches

by Kayte

Lola had her follow-up with the endocrinologist today. In the three months since we started growth hormones, she grew 2 inches and gained 1-1/2 pounds. Based on our last pediatrician appointment we were expecting a good report, but it’s always nice to have it validated by the medical professionals.

The 2 inches is an especially big deal. Normal growth for toddlers is 2 inches per year — and she grew that much in three months! This means she is responding perfectly to the growth hormone treatment and exhibiting what the doctors call “catch-up growth.” Things should slow down eventually (they don’t expect her to grow 8 inches in a year) but until then they said she can’t grow too fast. She’s still not even on the growth chart, so we still have a ways to go.

We also did some bloodwork while we were at the hospital just to make sure all of her internal levels look good. Should get the results in 1-2 weeks. In the meantime we’ll just keep doing what we’re doing. We will have follow-up appointments every 3-4 months until the doctors are confident that everything is stable, then every 6 months after that. Until she hits puberty. We definitely have a long road ahead of us, but at least we know we’re on the right one!

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Today was also the first time Lola was able to stand by herself on the big-kid scale instead of having to lie down on the baby scale. Big girl all-around.

Weight: 21lb 3oz
Height: 33 inches