Solid food...

Grace and Hunter got their first taste of solid food, today: a few spoonfuls of rice cereal mixed with formula. Jill and I have been considering this for a few weeks, but Gracie convinced us today when she grabbed my bowl and started trying to eat the pineapple off my cottage cheese. She almost dumped the bowl in my lap before I was able to regain control of the situation. Hunter was a little less interested, but both managed to keep it down! Yeah!

Happy Five Months!

Hunter and Grace turned five months old, today. (Has it really been five months?!?!) To celebrate, I uploaded a couple of recent videos. (These are, of course, on both YouTube and our MobileMe gallery which has better video quality than YouTube.) Hunter's Perspective What the world looks like when you are five months old... [youtube=] Laughter Jill's friend Monica finds something for Grace to laugh about... [youtube=] Note for posterity:  Hunter now weighs 16 pounds, 10 ounces, and Gracie weighs 15 pounds, 6 ounces.

Photo shoot...

Jill and I want to get some official birth announcements out soon. We tried once before, but the images we selected were too grainy for the printing company. So, a couple days ago, we spent an hour or so taking pictures in our bedroom. The best are now on our web gallery, including these two: Photographer's note:  The light in the room was natural but dim. I chose not to use a flash. Instead, I used a wide open f-stop and overexposed one full stop. As you might expect, the depth of field is quite small. Next time, I may choose to use a light or flash to see if I can get results as nice as these.

New milestones

Two new milestones to report today!
  • Gracie fed herself last night, for the first time ever!  She ate three ounces of formula while holding the bottle all by herself.  And, most impressively, she didn't spill a drop!
  • Hunter rolled over this morning, without any assistance!  I didn't see it, but Mom reports that he rolled from his tummy to his back, just like Grace has been doing.
Unfortunately, neither of these milestones are on film.  But, we'll capture them soon enough...

Gracie rolls!

I just uploaded a video of Gracie rolling over.  This was her third roll ever.  As you can see, she clearly enjoys it.  But, since she figured it out, she refuses to stay on her tummy for tummy-time.  You can view the video below (courtesy of YouTube), or you can view a higher quality version at our gallery.  As for Hunter, he's working hard trying to learn this trick himself.  He's almost there...  Stay tuned for that video... [youtube=]

Another "big" week for Grace and Hunter...

This week marked Grace and Hunter's four month birthday.  To celebrate, we took them to the doctor for four shots each.  They were not amused - though, they did seem to enjoy the liquid Tylenol.  Mmmm, cherry! The day after the shots, both babies ran a bit of a fever, which is to be expected with vaccinations.  We gave them one more dose of Tylenol and they slept a good bit that day.  By the day after that, they were back to their normal, happy, smiling, talking selves. Here's what else we learned from our doctor: Grace weighed 13 pounds, 15 ounces and measured 24.5 inches.  That's an increase of over five pounds and over five inches in four months, keeping Grace in the 50th percentile.  More importantly, the doctor could NOT hear the heart murmur that he identified in our first visit back in March.  (Gracie was born with a very minor ventricular septal defect (or VSD).  That's a long way of saying she had a very small hole in the wall of her heart between the left and right ventricles.)  This is VERY good news.  It means that as Gracie is growing, the hole is likely closing.  We'll go back to the cardiologist in another two months for an ultrasound to verify what our pediatrician is hearing through his stethoscope. Hunter weighed 14 pounds, 15 ounces and measured 25 inches, tripling his birth weight and growing over seven inches in length.  What's amazing about that?  Well, at birth, Hunter was in the 10th percentile in size.  Now, he's above the 50th percentile!  So, he's definitely caught up!  The only concern for Hunter is the flat spot that has developed on the left side of the back of his head.  The doctor wants more tummy time, to get him off his head, as well as interesting things to look at to Hunter's right when he is lying on his back.  If the spot is still there in a couple more months, Hunter may need to wear a helmet to protect his head and allow it to reshape correctly.  (Update: See Hunter's Head & Gracie's Revenge to get a look at Hunter's helmet.) Here's where the twins stand developmentally: Both are eating very well, as their growth numbers indicate.  Both are very happy babies, full of smiles - especially for Mom and Dad.  We're asked all the time if they're always so sweet.  The honest answer is no.  But, they're almost always that sweet.  Hunter is really good at blowing raspberries and pushing himself up when he's on his tummy.  Gracie has less patience for tummy time.  But, she's actually showing the ability to move herself around to get to the toy she wants.  (She slides along on her back, twisting her shoulders and pushing with her feet. We've received several requests for more pictures - especially those from our recent trips to Spokane and Sacramento.  I'll get to that soon.  Stay tuned...

Twelve pounds, ahoy!

Haven't blogged at all for over a week!  I don't know about you, but I sure feel withdrawal pains.  So, without further ado, here's the latest:  Hunter not only passed Gracie, he now weighs over 12 pounds!  Not to be outdone, Gracie weighs 11 pounds, 13 ounces! We recently switched from Level 1 nipples (slow flow for newborns) to Level 2 nipples (faster flow for 3 month olds).  As a result, Gracie has increased her daily intake of formula, though Hunter is still eating more.  The little guy is just an eating machine!  Bet you can't guess where he's putting all those extra calories...

A few of our favorite things

Oprah has her favorite things.  Martha has her good things.  These are a few of the things that have made our lives with twins a little easier...

The Happiest Baby on the Block DVD

Without this DVD, I would still be pulling my hair out trying to calm Gracie.  She knows how to cry.  But, thanks to this DVD, I know how to calm her down.  I cannot recommend this product highly enough - especially to first time parents.

Dunstan Baby Language DVD

Believe it or not, our two month old twins are already talking.  They speak fluent infant.  And, thanks to this two DVD set, Jill and I understand enough baby language to be able to tell the difference between "I'm hungry!", "Burp me!" and "I'm tired!"  Highly recommended!

Boppy Nursing Pillows

Ever try feeding twins by yourself?  Just place two Boppys back to back and away you go.  (See picture below.)  They also work great for positioning a baby on your lap for feeding.  Absolutely essential!  (And, it makes a nice hat, too!)