One year older and wiser too…

It used to be that before blowing out the candles we sang Happy Birthday (English) and Las Mañanitas (Spanish). Since moving to Seoul, we’ve added 생일 (Korean) and now Kimchi is insisting on Mandarin.

We made a freezer paper shirt for D.

Kimchi was pensive about what to make for his dad. I saw him cutting up cardboard. He made a new laptop since D’s has malfunctioning.

What’s going on?

baby girl

All of their clothes are shrinking…

baby boy

their skinny frog-legs have disappeared…

IMG_3937-cropped

MY BABIES ARE GROWING!!

At one month old, Baby Girl weighs 9.5 lbs and Baby Boy weighs 10 lbs.!!!! Baby Boy’s weight gain is especially celebratory considering he started with a feeding tube and could only handle a teaspoon of milk at a time.  In the 3 weeks he’s been nursing, he has gained a pound a week.  Hooray!!

Although they are twins they are very different from each other in developmental age, appearance and personality.  

Developmental Age:

We brought them home from the hospital on November 11th; they were 6 days old.  The day we brought them home was also our first day with Baby Boy.  (Prior to that, he had been in an isolette with machines and wires attached to him.  We could watch him through the glass during visiting hours–a 30 minute window each afternoon.)  Baby boy  had low muscle-tone and lacked reflexes.  He couldn’t suck and swallow to nurse.  His digestive system was immature.  He had no vision and stared right through our faces (I cried several times worrying that he had been blinded by the oxygen concentration in the NICU.)  Whereas, Baby Girl seemed to be half his size but she was an fierce nurser, held her head up, gave us sustained eye contact and even traced movement from the day we met her.

Baby Girl’s Appearance & Personality

She reminds me of a toy baby doll because she has a stiff little body and small features with large glassy eyes.  Her facial features, head size and even bone structure are petite.  She is incredibly beautiful to me.  Between the two babies, she is the squeaky wheel.  She is awesome at exercising her lungs and vocal chords.  She’s very alert.  The kids and I all imitate the face she makes when nursing because it’s hilarious.  (She scrunches up her nose and furrows her eyebrows and narrows her eyes like she’s challenging a toro.)  She does clever things like patting me on the back when I’m burping her.  She has a teeny little rosebud mouth and I usually say “AHHHH” to get her to open her mouth bigger.  Now, she has started saying, “AH AH AH” when she wants to eat.

Baby Boy’s Appearance & Personality

Baby boy is a cuddle bug!  He used to whimper in his sleep when we first brought him home from the NICU.  But the ratio of whimpers to smiles gradually reversed.  Now he gives us lots of big, goofy open-mouthed grins.  When I burp him he roots and ends up giving me wet, sucky kisses on my cheek and neck. My sweet boy.  He is chill as a cucumber.  He rarely cries.  If he’s awake at night, he just lays in crib, wide-eyed looking around.  For anyone, who feels intimidated by babies, this is definitely the one to start with.  Plus, something about holding him is extremely therapeutic.

It’s been a sleepless month as comes with the territory.  It’s also been one of the best months of our lives.

Tofu Talk

before a photo shoot with Skärbarn

[I had seen a mosquito and told the kids to smush it so it wouldn’t bite the babies.] Tofu scrunches up her nose in determination and growls, “Come ‘ere mosquito I’m gonna slap yer face.”

[Praying] “Bless the sun to be happy if it wants to…”

She’s heard me say things to the babies like “Momma’s boy” and “Momma’s Girl” and Tofu’ll rush to the babies side cooing, “Hello my little girl!  How’s Sister’s girl doing?”

“My baby brother can’t breathe yet. Maybe when he’s older.”

Tofu recently began signing her name with my maiden name. It really ruffles her daddy’s feathers.

The babies helped us realize that Tofu is not good at recognizing body language/emotions.  Baby Girl gets stomach pain and will often go red, rigid, grimace and cry out.  Tofu sees that grimace and cheerfully exclaims, “Oh, she’s smiling!!!!”

Tofu’s go-to phrase: “Easy-peasy lemon-squeezy.”

Tofu begged our neighbor for some of their American brand (commisary) yogurt and the neighbor gave her a couple to take home.  She took one bite and promptly decided she disliked cherry flavor and refused to have another bite.  I couldn’t find the yogurts in the fridge and asked her about it. “Um I saw one of the babies throw them all in the trash…”  (She’s really embracing all the benefits of being a big sister. 🙂 )