Sleepy Time Lullaby

Things have been a little busy around here (as you can tell from my lack of recent posts). I just studied for and recently took a humongous exam. I also had a group of really good friends and their kids stay with us over Thanksgiving week. The twins loved having kids their own age around — someone to play with from the time they wake up to the time they fall asleep. The only thing was, after our friends left, the twins’ normal schedule (as well as those of their friends, I’m sure) kind of got off-track. One of the difficulties was trying to get them to sleep on time.

Twinkle Twinkle Little StarWhen it’s time to go to sleep, I usually turn everything off and dim the lights. I turn on the lullaby music and tell my boys that it’s “sleepy time”. Sometimes they try to play with me. I try to be very boring and unexciting. Eventually they realize that they are tired and maybe sleeping is a better idea than trying to play with don’t-wanna-play-right-now Mommy. People seem to be incredulous when I tell that generally, the boys take their naps at the same time. But I’ve been mostly successful at putting them to sleep one after the other.

Since they were very young, the boys have been used to watching lullabies on Youtube to help them sleep. And later on, they became used to listening to lullabies as they fall asleep (and all night long with the lullabies softly playing in the background). It works really well with them. At nap time, I turn on the lullabies and pretty soon they start getting sleepy. It even works when they’re in the car and we play lullabies to help them sleep. But I guess it works because they associate sleep with the lullabies.  What do you do to help your kids fall asleep?

One of the lullabies that my twins like is “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” so a few friends and I thought it fitting to create another animated video featuring this song. The twins love it. I hope your kids like it as much as mine do. I thought our friend (who sang the title song as well as created the animation), Rico, did a phenomenal job. Enjoy!

Life is good

Lately, my mind seems to be running a mile a minute. It’s like I wake up thinking, ” Okay, I need to do this and this…” Then at the end of the day, I fall asleep thinking, “Okay, tomorrow I need to work on this and this…” Not that I’m complaining. I like being productive. But it does seem kind of exhausting.

Then, as if to wake me up, I glance over to my sons and the world stops. I notice Lorenzo’s long, dark eyelashes and his steady breathing as he sleeps. Or Ignacio stops playing just long enough to squeal with delight and come running to embrace me. Or sometimes, when I find myself so worn out that I am laying down on the carpet as the boys play, Lorenzo comes over, burrows his way into the crook of my arm, embraces me and just contentedly watches TV with me this way. Then I take a deep, long sigh and I think, “Life couldn’t be better.”

“Twogether”

No, its not a typo. I intentionally wrote “twogether”, as in two-together.

Yesterday, my family and I went to the park to get some exercise. My husband happened to bring along my old camera and handed it to me to take some shots. I took a few good ones. But there’s this particular one that he liked so much, he spent a good deal of time working on it. He emailed it to me.

It’s true though. These boys have been together since day one. Since they were mere cells, they have been together. Spent 35 weeks or so together in my tummy. Just one incubator apart in the NICU, but still side by side. And now playing, fighting and loving together. In other words, two-together — twogether.

Even though they fight a lot, I can see their fondness for each other. When I go to the doctor bringing just Lorenzo, he looks over at Ignacio’s car seat and then at me as if to say, “Where’s my brother?” Yesterday, after having a huge fight over one of their toys, Lorenzo fell asleep. I thought Ignacio would be happy playing with said toy but instead he looked up at me as if to say, “It’s not the same playing without my brother.”

I wonder what they think of each other. I wonder if they realize that they are brothers and that they share the same parents. More than once, when I’m holding one baby and the other baby comes along seeking attention, the baby in my arms will try to swat away the newcomer. I have to say, “I’m his Mommy too.” I wonder if they understand.

I hope they become great friends when they grow up. I hope they stand up for each other and cheer each other on. I hope they realize and appreciate the special bond they share. I hope they know how much we love them.

Where is Enzo?

My sons love to play peekaboo. One of their favorite games is to play it while running around me. (I am literally sitting, kneeling or standing in one place and the twins run around me.) They play it with Daddy, with me and even with each other. Sometimes, I would just find one of the boys hiding behind something (usually the sofa or the basketball post) waiting for me to say, “Where is Enzo?” (or Nacho as the case may be). And then he would squeal with laughter. Priceless.

Here is Lorenzo hiding under the bed and playing with his Daddy while working on the iPad. Talk about multitasking!

The Red Sticks

I know that “the Red Sticks” seem like a strange name for a Mommy blog. It seems more appropriate for a rock band (sporting red hair!) or a Chinese restaurant (as in the Red Chopsticks). But believe it or not, the title of my blog refers to my twin boys, Lorenzo and Ignacio.

For some reason, both boys seem to be particularly attracted to the color red. It probably has nothing to do with their red stroller, their red car seats or their array of red clothes. Nor the fact that their Mom’s favorite color is, in fact, the color red. (I’m being sarcastic here, in case you didn’t know.) So it comes as no surprise that they like toys that are red.

The boys have this toy hammering block from IKEA which has a series of sticks in various colors. There are only two red sticks and my boys love, love, love the red sticks.

These are their favorite toys!  They go everywhere – to the bathtub when they take their bath, to bed when they go to sleep and even in the car when we are driving somewhere. Unfortunately, because these sticks go everywhere, we also tend to lose them. If there’s only one red stick left, then be prepared for a lot of tantrums and fighting. We’ve actually already bought three sets of this hammering block just so there’s always a red stick for each boy.

But I’ve noticed that they actually like any red stick-like toy. Like today, Ignacio spent the whole day clutching a red Duplo Lego block. He had it in his hands from church to lunch to the supermarket and on the way back home.  When we go to the Children’s Museum in Houston, they like to clasp these red crystal sticks found in the TotSpot section.

So when it came time to name my blog, I thought of using a title that was both personal and reminded me of the two most important little boys in my life. Consider this a welcome of sorts to my blog. In the coming posts, I hope to share with you the highs and lows of being Momma to these Red Sticks. Have a great week ahead!

Photo courtesy of Ikea.