Parker & Jolie: 1 year

bow / handmade by BB // onesie / olive and birdie via etsy // vests / curly q’s counter via etsy // leggings / knotty baby wear via etsy // photography by: B Faith Photography

We have arrived.  365 days later and these girls are no longer ‘babies’.  Last year on the day we welcomed them into this world it was a stifling 80 degrees.. and 5 days later when we brought them home from the hospital it was 29 degrees.  Well.. Wednesday I was in flip-flops.. and two days later, on their first birthday, it barely reached 24 degrees.

We’ve officially come full circle.  *tear

One Year Stats.  We were scheduled to go for their one year well-check yesterday, but with the freak ice storm we were ‘snowed’ in and decided to reschedule.  We don’t go for a visit with Dr. Butler until later this week, but I know they are some growing string beans! We transitioned to Size 3 diapers (finally) and they are now wearing 9 mo & 6-12mo size clothes.  The 6 month clothing are good for size, but too short in length.  We weighed the girls at home on our scale and then brought out the measuring tape for an estimate of where we are size wise at 12 months.

onesies / carter’s // leggings / knotty baby wear via etsy

18 pounds
28 inches

18 pounds 8 ounces
28 3/4 inches

Miss Jolie, who has always been about a pound lighter than her sister, finally has caught up within a half a pound!

I’ve been so excited to write this post.. I can’t put my finger on just why exactly.  Parker and Jolie literally changed so much just in this last month.  Looking at the pictures I took of them on Thanksgiving Day.. I hardly recognize them.  They changed overnight!  How is that possible.  I was taken off guard as I looked through the pictures on the camera immediately after taking them.  I did a double take and handed the camera to Jordan.. “Who’s kids are those?

One word: PERSONALITY.  Both of them are off the charts precious and funny and full of personality.  This last month has probably been the most fun and the most difficult at the same time.  Last month I talked about the start of tantrums and this month we’ve taken it up a notch.  Stomping of feet (Parker), yelling/screaming/screeching (Parker), throwing herself backwards (Parker), rolling around on the floor (Parker).. so pretty much, Parker throws a fit.  Jolie gets upset when you say ‘no’ or take something from her, but nothing like the response we get from Miss Parker.  As sweet as that little can be, if she is hungry or tired, she is letting you know about it.

jammies / carters // beanies / cotton cupcake shoppe via etsy

The girls have really taken a liking to one other this month- looking for each other, loving on each other, and chasing/running around the house and down the halls.  Lots of hugs and kisses! Too stinkin’ precious for their own good! Parker is really into sharing/helping with every thing.  She likes to share food, help pick up toys/books/papers, put clothes in piles (and then move that pile from one place to another until she makes a circle around the room), throw away trash.. the list goes on.  She is totally going to be momma’s little helper.  I will never forget the day Jolie was crying and Parker brought her puppy to try and cheer her up.  I couldn’t get over how sweet that was!

Teething continued and it seemed to last ALL month long!  I felt like the girls ran fever for three weeks straight. Runny nose, fever, and two 3rd degree clingers- it was a tough couple of weeks.  I didn’t hardly know what to do for them.  I felt terrible that they felt so terrible.  Breaks my heart to see my usual cheerful and silly babies seem so miserable.  Parker and Jolie officially have 6 teeth.  The two on the bottom and the same three across the top.  Jolie’s have really come in- you can see them when she smiles.  Parker is getting there.  They seemed to come in a little slower than Jolie’s.


In anticipation for their first birthday we started to transition to whole foods and away from the purees and spoon feeding for every meal.  Early in their 11th month both of them decided that they hated oatmeal and some of their favorite purees (sweet potatoes and butternut squash).  After refusing to eat everything I offered them on the spoon I decided we were going to move to more finger foods at dinner.  The first week to 10 days were hard.  I know this was coupled with not feeling well and teething, but they refused anything and everything I offered them except yogurt and Cheerios.  ‘Dinner’ was full on meltdown: crocodile tears, and whaling in their high chairs for 20 minutes. 

I was stressed.

After offering them dinner this way and having food thrown in my face for almost two weeks, Jolie and Parker finally decided they would try what was on their tray.  After that, its kind of been an open book of tasting.  They will taste everything I put in front of them, which is fine by me!  Up until this point I had never offered them meats of any kind.  Reading cookbooks instructing me to puree chicken or lamb grossed me out so I decided to hold off until they had more teeth to be able to chew the meat.  We were at a birthday party a couple weekends ago and Parker straight took a chicken nugget off my plate and ate the entire thing.  Ok.  So you like Mickey Mouse shaped chicken nuggets.  I’m okay with that!

hairbow / jameson monroe // onesie / carter’s // vest / carter’s 

New foods this month:  ham, turkey, chicken, hamburger, mandarin oranges, pears, grilled cheese, rice cakes, string cheese, green beans, broccoli, ice cream, yogurt smoothies.

In the second week of November we started to think about weaning them from breast milk and transitioning to whole milk.  We were slung into doing this because the first weekend in November Parker decided she was through nursing.  She screamed her head off in starvation at my feet for three days, but wouldn’t nurse longer than 3-5 minutes.  Finally, I offered her a bottle and she sucked it right down.  Well, okay then.  She’s done with me.  And Im okay with that.  At that point I decided it was time for Jolie to be done as well- pumping one side after nursing while trying to bottle feed a busy 11 month old wasn’t going to work for me.  My body only knows nursing two at a time, therefore produces enough for two babies to be satisfied on one breast.  SO- for the last three weeks I’ve been pumping and giving the girls bottles for every feeding.  I also think her refusal of the breast had to do a lot with a growth spurt.  She wanted to milk immediately and didn’t want to ‘work’ at it at all. I feel ya, girl.  When I’m hungry, I’m hungry.. and you are just like me!  These babies have always been fickle eaters, hardly finishing a bottle when momma is at work and not big at all on table food.  Now, both of them are bottomless pits!  Parker will suck down her 7 ounces and hop up to see what else there is to nibble on.

Around the same time I started pumping, we began slowly transitioning to whole milk. We started slowly by mixing 2 ounces of organic whole milk and 5 ounces of breast milk into each feeding. After a week we upped the whole milk amount to 1/2 and 1/2, and now we are at just 2 ounces of breast milk and 5 ounce of whole milk.  The idea was that by their birthday, they would be ready for straight milk.  They’ve done great with the whole milk, hardly acting like they notice a change in their bottles. Weaning them this was has also helped me wean myself.  I went from pumping four times a day to three, and currently I’m pumping just once in the morning and once before bed.  I’ve noticed a significant drop in my supply and no engorgement or pain like I was afraid of.  This whole weaning thing has come a lot easier than I thought it was going to be.  

Typical feeding schedule at 1 year:
7-7:30am:  7 ounce bottle (5 ounces organic whole milk, 2 ounces breast milk)
9am: Breakfast!  Usually a grain and a fruit: whole grain waffles, mandarin oranges, grapes, toast, cheerios; and alway yogurt!  Whole Milk Organic Vanilla yogurt, about 1/2 cup each.
9:45am-10am:  nap
11:30am-12pm: 7 ounce bottle
2pm: Snack: yogurt, cheerios, fruit, toast
2:30pm: nap
4pm: 7 ounce bottle
5:30pm: Dinner!  Chicken nuggets, broccoli fries, green beans, grilled cheese, pears, beans, deli meat,  bread
7:15pm: 7 ounce bottle
7:30pm: Bed

onesies / carter’s // leggings // knotty baby wear via etsy


Last month we talked about transitioning to just one nap a day.  The first two days were awesome!  The girls took one three and a half hour nap and were complete angels the remainder of the day.  After day number two- it was a complete nightmare.  We decided after about a week of misery: babies falling asleep in the middle of the kitchen floor and developing a hatred of bathtime..
which they typically LOVE bath, we opted to go back to two naps.  The girls definitely were not ready to move from two to one nap a day because their sleep habits have been amazing ever since.  2 1/2 to 3 hours in the morning around 9am and then again for about an hour and a half in the afternoon.

At night we are still doing pretty well.  Jolie sleeps well through the night most of the time while Parker is just now starting to sleep through the night again.  Early 11 months Parker started waking up again multiple times a night.  Hoping we can get back to both of them sleeping through the night again, soon!

During all this transition of feeding, napping, and breastfeeding I was so thankful for my fellow twin mommas Meredith and Sheena.  Random panic texts and emails.. crying ‘help’!  I am so blessed to be able to lean on them for help with my babies as their kiddos are just a little older than Parker and Jolie. I get lots of emails from other new mommas and almost every single one apologizes for asking so many questions.. I am right in that same boat with you!  Don’t apologize.  I am so flattered to be a resource of information for each and every one of you:)  Just know that I’m doing some emailing for advice myself, too!

I’ve been thinking about how I would go about writing these ‘one year’ letters to my girls for several months now.  Jordan wrote their letter at 6 months, and I definitely wanted to include him again for their one year recap, but I also wanted to write one to Parker and Jolie.  Part of me doesnt even know where to start with these letters to my girls..and the other part is worrying about how I’m going to make it through to finish without bawling like a baby.

Parker Jane

Your Favorites: your monkey Wubanub, your paci (can’t sleep without it!), singing your ABC’s with BB, playing ‘chase’ around the house, paper (toilet paper, paper towels, boxes, receipts),  iPhone, the remote control, anything you can stack- blocks, cups, etc., bath time, the color orange, and most of all- cuddling.
Food: You will pretty much try anything! Yogurt, chicken nuggets, bananas, Cheerios, goldfish, pears

Your Not-So-Favorites:  When Jolie takes a toy away, not getting first dibs on momma’s lap, being in your car seat for too long, being left out, getting dressed or diaper changes.

Food: You aren’t big on eating bread

Parker Jane,
My sweet little girl. How much you have come out of your little shell recently. You were once so reserved and now can be so crazy. All I have to do is look at you and you will start to grin behind that paci if yours. You love to play chase through the house and I absolutely love your screeches of excitement as I come close to getting you. What a momma’s girl you have become. If your momma is around you want nothing to do with anyone unless it’s from her arms. You have become quite the hugger recently. You will walk right over to me and wrap your arms around me. You sure know how to melt your daddy’s heart. I love to watch you give your sister sugars. You have become quite the helper by bringing your sister her puppy when she needs it. You have become such a beautiful little girl and I am thankful to be your father. I can’t wait to watch who you become over this next year. 
I love you sweet heart!
My Sweetest Parker-
You’ve grown the most of any month this year this last month.  You have developed into such the little girl- and I feel like I can see you as my perfect little mommas helper.  You love to share, help momma carry things, throw things away, and making piles (with laundry in particular..) is your favorite thing to do these days.  You are so smart, and practically surprise me on the daily with how quickly you pick up on things.  When I talk to you, you definitely attempt to understand what I’m saying.  I want to take notes every single day spent with you by my side because I never want to ever forget you at this age.  
The once serious and laid back Parker Jane has turned into the most playful little bit.  For months you would sit back and watch daddy and Jolie play and rough house without any interest whatsoever.  Baby girl- now you will do anything you need to in attempts to get someone to chase you up and down the hallway and around the kitchen island.  You ‘bring‘ me or your daddy things and just as they are in arms reach you yank it away and take off a running.  This goes on  I am so smitten with your silly personality and crazy brained grin.  You look like you are up to no good half the time.  I find myself laughing out loud at your antics, and when you catch me- its all about the fake laugh to keep me going.  Out of control. Gah.  I am so in love with you.  
All this sweetness, you sure do know how to pull out the attitude.  You keep me and your daddy on our toes.. there is a picture in the back of my head of a 14 year old Parker, but it isn’t your face- it is my own!  So many times that little ‘tude of yours reminds me of my own.  When you are tired or hungry there is no denying you food or sleep or else we pay for it.   Oh.. and the eye roll.  Perfected that at 11 months.  It is so bad, but we find it absolutely hilarious when you pull out the foot stomp.  I do my best to hide it from you, but man..we are in trouble with you, sweet one.  
You aren’t sleeping through the night yet,  but to be honest.. I cherish the snuggles we share at 2:30am.  You are the best snuggler and that hasn’t changed since you were a wee little bit.  Your little face fits perfectly in my neck and when you throw your arm around my face I cannot help but forget that I’m actually awake and not dreaming.  So, so sweet.
I cannot believe the milestones you have hit over this last year and I am more than excited to see what comes of this second year with you.  Being your momma has been the most amazing experience of my life and am confident it will never be replaced.    
I love you, daughter.  Happy 1st birthday, lovey!
Jolie Grace
Your Favorites: Puppy, music/dancing, singing the ABC’s with BB, anything that lights up and sings, smiling and laughing, climbing, and exploring, rough housing (Your FAVORITE to play rough with daddy).

Food: Yogurt, applesauce, Cheerios, Goldfish, bread, grilled cheese, broccoli fries. 

Your Not-So-Favorites: being in your car seat for too long, finding a comfortable position to sleep in, getting dressed and changing your diaper (continues to be a never ending battle!)

Food: You will try most anything, but I’ve noticed that you aren’t interested in meat./

Jolie Grace,
What a little girl you have become. This past year has flown by and I have loved every minute of it. You have become such a spunky, beautiful little girl. Every time I come home from the fire station I feel like you have grown even more. You always have a smile on your face and love to be silly. Your laugh reaches deep into my heart and touches it in an unforgettable way. I love our days together at home. You love to sit on my lap and play from there. Even though you are so crazy during the day, you can sure snuggle at night. You love to lift your head off of my chest and lean forward to give me “sugars.”  Let me tell you, ” I am pudding in your hands when you do that.” I love watching you and your sister give each other “sugars.” You are such a helper when dad is unloading the dryer.  You are so sweet and such a beautiful little girl. I am thankful to be your father and am so excited for this next year with you. 

I love you sweet pea!


Jolie Polie,

You aren’t so little any more, boo!  I can’t believe how much you’ve grown and changed these last 12 months.  And the happiest baby award goes to.. serious, Jolie- tears don’t last long in your book.  You always know how to make me and your daddy smile- yours is crazy contagious!  And it isn’t just your smile.   You can get to giggling and have the entire room in laughing tears before its over.

While your serious sister flipped a switch to silly, you’ve gone from Miss Independent to quite the snuggle bunny yourself.  You love to listen to momma or BB read you stories and will sit intently studying the colors and images in the book.. while sister girl is tearing through the pages to the end.    You can play happily by yourself as well as in the lap of momma or dad.  Most of the time you are fighting for space with Parker- she has become territorial over her momma, but you are sweet and share so easily.  My once high maintenance baby girl is so easy going- I love it!   Your favorite thing to play with seems to be the big cardboard box we got from Costco.  You and puppy can play for a solid hour in that box.  When you aren’t sitting in it, you are pushing it across the living room.  Anything that will move- you will push it.  I’m thinking we  need to invest in a little shopping cart or baby stroller, or something along those lines for Christmas.  You would love it!

You are such a little goofball and I seriously adore you.  If ever I have a ‘bad’ day, coming home to your smiling face erases all my worries away.  That sounds so cheesy, but it is 100% true.  I can’t explain it.   Nothing like that has ever happened to me before.. until I became a momma to you, sweetness.  You are my rockstar sleeper, and how thankful I am for that.  You and puppy snooze away for 12-13 hours straight and I can’t help but be a little jealous of ya, girl!

I am so excited for all the changes that have occurred just in the last month.  You went from super picky to the best eater ever!  I get so proud watching you select the food on your tray to eat- hold it perfectly between your pointer and your thumb and eat one little chunk of food at a time.  Unlike your sister that shovels it in, hardly tasting any of it, I’m sure.  You help momma and dad get you dressed {which is SO helpful}, and are so smart when it comes to picking things up after ‘teaching’ you for a short time.  We are learning about our eyes, ears, nose, and mouth and it won’t be long before you can point them out.  Ugh.  Growing so quick!

You’ve grown and changed, but you are still my tiny little Jolie Polie.  I am so honored, blessed, thankful to be your momma.  Happy birthday, sweet girl.

I love you!


If you follow me on IG {@masseya} you saw my post last night after Parker and Jo went to sleep.  My cup truly overflows with blessings.. no words can describe the love exploding from my heart over my sweet family.  This year has been such an undescribable experience for Jordan and I.  Every month better than the last, so I can only imagine what the next year to come will bring.  It can only get better.    

12 months.  Happy birthday to 2 of the 3 loves of my life.

Oh.. and a high-five-fist-pump-blow-it-up to my incredible hubby.  365 days.  We did it.

Love you, Lou.


December 7, 2013

  1. Michelle says:

    happy Birthday to your sweet girls!! 🙂

  2. Sheena says:

    So, so precious! Happiest of birthdays to you P and J!

    I'm so glad that weaning is going so well! I've been thinking of you a lot watching all the Instagram posts about the girls first birthday! Keep on keepin' on mama! You're a pro!

  3. TWilson3 says:

    Where did you find the veggie fries? What a great idea!

  4. JessicaLynn says:

    Awe these are the sweetest!! Happy Birthdays girls and keep up the great work Amber and Jordan your girls are so precious

  5. Meredith says:

    Happy Birthday to your sweet girls! It has been such a joy to watch them grow. And from what little I've experienced in year two, it just keeps getting better! Also, thanks for the shout-out on the post, that was sweet. I think it's helpful for other moms to know that none of us have all the answers. That's one of the things that makes these blog/instagram connections so great! (In other news, I am so far behind on commenting that I've decided to pick a blog each day and read all the entries I've missed. So lucky you, haha, it's your day!) 🙂

  6. They are just too much! I cannot believe those sweet girls are one already!

  7. Oh Amber! They are such dolls! I just loved their birthday pictures. I cried reading your sweet letters. They will treasure these posts in years to come. I love reading about your sweet sweet family. Happy birthday girls!


  8. The Joiners says:

    Happy birthday, Parker & Jolie! And happy 1 year of surviving to you and Jordan- a huge accomplishment indeed! I'm sorry the freak ice storm postponed their birthday party, but hopefully y'all had a good weekend hunkering down and I'm sure the party will be wonderful whenever it happens!!

  9. Amber I can't get over how cute they are!!!! and tehy are getting so big!!! 🙂

  10. Love following your blog, my twin boys are almost 8 months. It looks like the girls were maybe in a double umbrella stroller — I'm looking for one for an upcoming trip. Do you have one and if so, which one/do you like it? Happy birthday to your girls!