Please Don’t Wipe my Child’s Face

It happened again, the cashier at Wal-Mart beside herself trying to help me wipe my kids’ faces. They are so messy! She exclaims. Oh my gosh let me see what I have to help you, digging for paper towels. I look at my kids, enjoying a frosted donut. They look fine to me. Happy even.

Oh, they are ok I say. Just let me get that little bit of frosting she leans in to our stroller with a paper towel. Please don’t I start lauging. I don’t know why everyone keeps trying to wipe their faces.

She stops mid wipe and stares at us. So I ask her, laughing, why does everyone try to wipe their faces. She is confused, because they are a mess she says.

My children, a mess? Yes, they are. Just another Wednesday. Frosting all over their little faces because we stoppped at dunkin donuts, it’s free donut day.

I am surprised how messy children bother people. Like it really really bothers some people to see choolate on a childs face. Are you one of those people? No judgement if you are. To me messy faces and kids go hand in hand. It would never cross my mind to wipe someone elses’ child’s face, especially if I don’t know them. But I am messier than most.

It always surprises me, someone notices us, three little kids in a wagon and insists on helping me wipe their faces. Never mind the toddler hitting her brother with a bottle of shampoo or the other throwing paper towels out of the cart, messy faces!, that’s the priority here. I always wonder if they have kids. If they fed their kids donuts as they walked through a store and if they did, if they brought a wet rag with them everywhere they went. Baby wipes probably.

I told Tom about this and about the women before the cashier who bent over with a rough paper towel and wiped Edith’s face commenting on what a mess she was and exclaiming in disbelif that little Edith was chewing on her brother’s shoe. I was getting blood work drawn. She’s a twin I laughed, she’ll be alright.

Just wipe their faces he says. Then it won’t matter.

He is probably right. But also, I have not watched him walk three kids through wal-mart while getting a prescriptions, remembering the grocery list and feeding them breakfast. Or maybe if he did he would do it with baby wipes in hand, I’m not sure.

I’m working on it I say. I did recently have a conviction that wiping little faces is an act of love for my children to keep them clean and comfortable. So I get it. And it doesn’t take very long to wipe a little face. But stronger than my desire to keep my children clean is my desire to let my kids, be kids. Donuts and all. Sticky, messy sometimes with dirty little faces, kids.

So, if you see us in the store with sticky hands and messy faces, please don’t wipe my babies’ faces.

I know you want to help, but the klenexx in your purse isn’t going to work. Maybe you can’t see past the mess on their face but these children are having a really good day and in a world where messes are quick to be wiped away, I’m content to let them stay this way. Not forever, no not at all, it goes by so fast after all. Isn’t that the thing you always say? Enjoy those kids while they’re young, soon they’ll be too big for that cart.

I promise I won’t let them get it all over Wal-mart.

But no, please don’t wipe my child’s face. Even though it looks out of place. Not in the grocery store, not in the parking lot, because I know it looks like I forgot but I assure you, I did not. We are just getting through our day and these messy little children, I promise they are going to be okay. I know you just want to help and that’s very kind but eating a donut, with frosting all over your face don’t you think it taste better that way?

Amazon Cyber Monday Deals for Kids

Hi guys. Do you love a good Cyber Monday Deal? Ever since we started our super budget (I’ll have to tell you about it) I have been more picky wihh kids toys and gifts that are actually fun. Most of our toys for Tommy this year are thrifted but sometimes Amazon has better deals. Anyways, here are the best Amazon Cyber Monday deals I found for kids, mostly for ages 3-5 but some, any age would love. These ideas are fresh off of my Mega List of Amazon Finds for Kids 3-5 year olds.

Here are 15 Cyber Monday Deals on Amazon for Kids 3-5 years old

Amazon Cyber Monday Deals for kids 2020

  1. Climbing Rope Swing – $23.19 – Swings are fun, we are thinking about this one indoors for our basement playroom makeover
  2. Water Beads – $6.79 – the best gift unless you have babies in the house, I’ll have to tell you about the time the twins ate water beads
  3. Corgi doll – $21.99 – would I pay $21.99 for this? Yes! Seriously though, stuffed dogs make awesome gifts for pretend play
  4. Real Tool Belt – $39.99 – actual real tools for kids is always a good idea
  5. Snuggle Swing – $23.09 – I want one for me, also a great idea for a playroom
  6. Fort Kit – $29.97 – we make so many forts that I think this is worth it
  7. Little People – $29.50 – these are great little people for pretend play, much better than the chunky little people that are hard to find
  8. Forrest Animal Stacker – $15.56v – these are good for extend play, adding to wooden blocks for example and they are cheaper than a lot of wooden toys I have seen
  9. Butterfly House -$20.99 – this is the best gift! Have you watched a butterfly grow yet. The butterfly come separate but it includes a voucher
  10. Stacking Pegs – $15.27 – our most played with toy are these peg stackers (our our an older model) perfect for quiet play
  11. Spider Web Swing – $54.99 – this one is not listed as a cyber monday deal but it is cheaper than the cyber monday deal one and just as good of quality
  12. Remote Control Car – $19.99 – every year I look to buy a remote control car I have no idea except they are so fun, this is a good price for one that goes outside and in grass
  13. Keyboard -$34.99 – this is an excellent price, I am not sure of the quality compared to better known keyboards but for a kids first keyboard it makes a great gift
  14. Learning Resources Veggie Sort – $30.99 – these are so fun and it is a great price! Endless learning and play possibilites
  15. Kids Walkie Talkies – $18.69 – walkie talkies are a childhood stample if you have friends / neighbors /siblings, this is a good brand

 

Happy shopping friends. I would love to hear what deals you are finding if I missed anything. Check out my Mega Amazon List For kids 3-5 years old. if you need more ideas. I hope you are well! Can you believe it is almost Christmas?

 

How we’ve been

Hi, how are you? I hope you are well!

It has been a minute. True story, I had twins. And then disappeared because… I had twins. But they are ten months old now and I can wiggle away to type on a computer. I know. It is VERY exciting. Both parts, the twins part and the freedom I now have type on a computer. This is so fun. The typing part. And the twins part. How do you type again? My brain is mush, I haven’t slept in ten months but we are good! If you need an accurate picture to that depicts my life currently; it is this.


This picture aka how I’ve been: Running on coffee, house is a mess, twins napping, (the only time I have free hands), still splurging on take away coffee even though I stay home (its a problem) (not because of COVID, just because of money, where’s the budget?) and Tommy may or may not have pants on. Hey-oh! How is life going for you?

The twins are great and so much fun but also, twins are HARD. No one tells you that. Jk. Everyone does. But it is true. In the best way of course. Ira (left) and Edith (right) are doing great. I have managed to brestfeed for ten months, no small victory I will have to tell you about it. They are six months old in this picture (above), it’s the first picture I found when I opened my computer so here it is. I have to dig for a new one. Hold one. Hold on, not one. See I can’t type. But yes, come hold one. Ok one second. ps. how do you organize photos because I have them evr’y where.

Here they are at the park yesterday. One thing no one told me about twins is you almost never get them looking the same direction in a photo, ever.

It is finally cold here in Pennsylvania. This picture is brought to you by the kind mom at the park who gave me socks for Edith. If there is one thing beyond my capabilities, it is keeping track of socks for small children. Where do all the baby socks go and how do I keep track of them? If anyone asks where I’ve been for the last ten months, nursing babies and searching for socks. That’s the summary.

I did find these wonderful baby bootie things on Amazon and they work well except the velcro needs to be tighter because I keep loosing them too. Also I need 15 pairs. . Anyways, moving on!

In other news Tommy Taylor is also great. Man I love this kid. Being home with him is best. Four is so much better than three. I am sure everyone says their kid is funny but he is really funny. He is doing great with his brother and sister, already picking on Ira and favoring Edie because she is a girl (and she is just so sweet he says). Not sure where it comes from except Ira screamed his first seven months of life so there’s that.

Oh yeah! Big news, baby Ira stopped screaming! Yay! I don’t think I talked about it at all one here because, I’ve been too busy trying to figure out why. Turns out he had really bad reflux and a dairy ‘sensitivity’. More on that later, I still think it is a conspiracy but I’ve been dairy (and soy) free since he was born and he FINALLY stopped screaming. Thankfully giving up coffee made no difference for him, thankful for small favors. Ps. goat milk is the best, I will have to tell you about it. Ira still has moments of scream crying which I think is just his personality but it is so much better.

Here he is cute and innocent, like who me? One thing I did not see coming, the amount of time twins take and especially with one crying all day and how very little you can get done in a day. Like duh. But until it happens to you, well it is mind numbing. Seriously, what day is it? Normally I am a low or no screen time parent (or I aspire to be) but recently, 32 episodes of Paw Patrol is our normal. What’s the term, ‘new normal’? Just playing (too soon). I am trying to ‘homeschool preschool’ for Tommy so he has something else to do. I will have to share about it more. Basically I want to send him to part time preschool but it is just not in our budget right now.

Speaking of budget. I did not equate leaving my job would put us on such a super tight budget. Naive much? We are on a super budget. I would love to hear what you did to make a super budget work. I am having a hard time giving up coffee out, which is as obnoxious as it sounds. Bigger question: how do you work and stay home with small children? Tom took on a second job building furniture wiht my brothe so I can continue to stay home, which I am so thankful for but also, we never see him. I thought I would be working my web design job but it’s rare that I am not holding, rocking, feeding babies and strangely nap time with two babies is twice as short as nap time with one. Now that the twins eat solid foods (I love breastfeeding but also when they started eating solid food it’s like a whole new world of possibilities) and since they both (mostly) sleep through the night I think I can start working. I pray I can make it work because we really need money. I am able to get up at 4:00 AM (power hour!) to work on the computer some and I hope I can turn it into real actual work. I just made a website for my brother kanddcreations.com and I just need like twenty more websites in my portfolio before I feel legit. No biggie.

Ok that’s it for me! I think I just realized I need a new camera lens because all the pictures I take with it turn out blurry like this one^ and it’s making me really sad so I am going to get off here and try to find some work so I can like actually buy things. I would love to know how you are! How you have been? Also, can we all bring blogs back? I so miss reading other peoples’ blogs. TikTok just is not the same is it?

Thanks for reading and I’ll talk to you soon!

Always thankful, always grateful,

Emily

You Would Have been Two

You would have been two.
Both of you.
I asked your Dad if he still thinks about you.
He says of course and I do too.
There’s a little girl at church, she is also two.
When I look at her, I think about you.

Something happened the day you were born
Heaven met earth in an operating room.
Joy came in where grief should have been.
We loved you forever, we met you just then.

Something happened when they said you would die
I didn’t want to move not ever again. I could have stayed there forever just then.
I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t be.
I stared at the ceiling and started to pray then it happened, God said you would be okay.

It didn’t make sense, I couldn’t say why
When every doctor said you would die
Then at home, God told me again, and again and again.
Watch me He said, watch what I will do.

They told me we would lose you both really soon,
They told me to abort you and start again new.
They said it in a whisper they said it so sad.
They said I’m so sorry this is so bad.
They said it in a way that made me wonder what to do,
The only thing I wanted was to protect you.

But God said, wait and watch, watch what I will do.
All that mattered was what God said about you.
I waited for God to step in, stubbornly I waited for Him.

He said you would be safe, I knew it would be true.
But still all I wanted was you.
Then I saw it, saw it come true, the miracle we asked for, the miracle was you.

To walk through the pain and see it all done, for His glory to say that God had won. To talk about Jesus to everyone we met to say how He saved you when we had no hope left.

You both at peace, you both born safe
Something happened when we saw your face,
Joy rushed in, it took grief’s place
And God did what He said He would do, we could see it then when we looked at you.

You would have been two.
Both of you.
Your Dad asked last night if I still think about you.
I said of course, but something else to,
Heaven is what I think about when I think about you.💕

Under the Stars

Two hours past his bed time I decide to sit out under the stars. We watch airplanes and count stars and we see a shooting star or was it a lightning bug? We still aren’t sure. Then he asks me, Mommy, are aliens real? I say, no, but God is.

He’s slient thinking about it. Then says, but aliens ARE real people just don’t know it because everyone is asleep.
Well no one has ever seen an alien. But you know who made all these stars? God did.

He brings out a pair of scissors and starts cutting the grass. I stare at the stars and wonder if my eyes are going bad or are all of these stars flickering? Another lighting bug, or is is a shooting star? I can’t tell. It’s a bug because it’s on the neighbors’ house now.

We go inside and up to bed where I read two books instead of one. The Big Book of Why. Why do we have hair? Why do boats float? Why do airplanes fly? It’s his favorite book. Suddenly he asks, mommy did you know that five plus five is ten? Excited because he has my full attention for the first time in a long time. Wow, yeah bud, good job. And six plus four is ten too, he says. You’re right, okay, what about two plus eight? Ten!

I keep reading then it dawns on me, hey, what is four plus three?
Seven, he says.

I had no idea he could add.

Suddenly he says, Mommy, do you know why Jesus can’t come into my heart?
No, why?
Because he doesn’t know where it is.
I say oh buddy, that’s not true. God made your heart so he knows EXACTLY where it is.

He’s quiet. I realize he has been thinking about this for a long time.

So I ask, is there anything you want to ask God for?
Yeah, a toy robot with a laser gun that shots real lasers but I don’t want that from God, I just want that for Christmas.
Well, pray that mommy and daddy have enough money and maybe you will get one.

Do you have any questions Tommy? (I ask him that every night).
Yeah. Does the tooth fairy come when dogs loose their teeth? Do you think they get dog treats instead of money?
No buddy but you are funny. Sleep good, I love you and Jesus loves you more.

I walk away and laugh.

I was done for the day. I didn’t want to do his bed time. I didn’t want to brush his teeth or get him in bed. I didn’t want to sit with him or read a book or lead him in another prayer.

But before I gave up for the day, I felt this urge… just sit with him under the stars. 🌟

Week One with Twins

They are home! Edith and Ira are home. Wow friends, I almost did not write this post because our first week with twins was, well our first week home with twins! I am still shocked how all consuming it was.

Okay, I was just interrupted 891 times and it’s eleven weeks later but here we go.

This was them just twenty minutes of being home. How tiny! I had this weird thing about not wanting to cut their hospital bands off because then it would be real, like waking up from a dream? Did you do that too?

Oh they are so tiny, I don’t think it hit me until they were on this boppy pillow. They came home at a little over FIVE pounds each.

The first night we brought them home was actually pretty peaceful. Oh my heart, when I set them in the crib for the first time. We really got them home. This is our actual real life. After all my stressing about safe sleep, the divider Tom made worked perfectly, if for nothing else for my peace of mind.

I forgot how much they sleep. And how peacefully. You bet I was checking them every fifteen minutes. I was shocked every time they were still breathing. I think it’s part of my grieving. They are still breathing, I just checked.

There is this picture, Tommy took it with my phone and in it I look so…. contemplative. I am feeding Edith formula and I remember how mad I was about it. I am so glad Tommy took this (and another one where I look straight up mad) because then and there I decided to be joyful and to show it to him and to smile at the babies, even when I am worried/tired/stressed.

Also, side note, YOU ARE NOT FAILING if you feed your babies formula. I think we need to say that more often.

Phew.  I have many thoughts about breastfeeding twins and breastfeeding in general but more on that later.

Truly, our first days home just flew by, the only semi-scary thing was we had to take Edith to the Emergency room for elevated bilirubin levels on day four. Now that was stressful.

We knew she was jaundiced when we left the hospital but were hoping it would get better, instead it got worse. I almost wish we had stayed an extra day to figure it all out because we had the option but we were so ready to bring them home.

First moment I realized Tom was meant to have twins because he took charge of the whole thing. There was a moment where he grabbed Edith and was walking across the parking lot after having brought Ira back out from the doctor, that I was like, oh yeah, I married the right person. He just took charge when I couldn’t. I was still in such a daze. What is that postpartum daze?

He kept track all of their paperwork, all of their numbers, weights and bilirubin levels and my prescriptions and the only thing I could focus on was trying to breastfeed. It was a fight, man. Edith’s bilirubin was 21.7 at the highest so I fed her formula ( I was determined not to), just to get anything in her– in both of them. I am so glad I did because YOU CAN feed formula and still breastfeed. I know! No one told me that.

Here are our brand new babes in the emergency room. We were SO scared they would catch something (RSV) but the doctors and nurses let us come straight back. Her levels ended up being on the way down so we were able to go home without being admitted.

That was day four. Day five felt a little more settled. I talked to a friend about it all and she told me how she ignored all doctors (don’t do that but ya know) and sat her jaundice baby in front of a window in the middle of December. So I did the same. Sometimes the answer is simple right? And I have a theory the answer is always sunshine. For everything.

This was the moment I felt like we were going to be okay. That they were home and where they were supposed to be, that they are mine and I am their mom and I DO know what to do. I remember it distinctly because the sunshine was beating on me too. Seriously, sunshine helps you think better.

That was about all the excitement of our first week home.

Oh, if you have twins, buy newborn size clothes! Guys, I only bought/asked for 0-3 month clothes because I thought I only had big babies. Hahaha, this is them in a 0-3 month sleepers it was kind of funny. It maybe wouldn’t have mattered, but it is winter and it is cold.

Another trip to the doctor. No joke, you go every day when you have newborn twins.

Tommy looooves being a brother and I am so glad. He is so gentle with them. The morning I took this he came in our room and asked, “Are they still here?” Yes they are buddy. Then he said he had to kiss them, “double kisses for double babies.” I can’t even.

I can’t even believe this is real. God truly has blessed us. We made it through the first week, so surely we can do this.

Edith and Ira, we love you baby babes. I will never forget the first week we brought you home.

Always grateful, always thankful,

Emily