life lately // parker + jolie

I’m sitting here with a blank computer screen and watching Parker and Jolie consume their second and third popsicle in about eleven minutes and I realize that its been FORever since I did a little update on p+j.  my BIG girls.  at three and a half they have changed so much- especially in just the last 6 months since I’ve done one of these!  lots of life lately has included the littlest miss Baker.. and now with her birthday thats come and gone and the last month or more really gearing up towards the big day.. and her party.. I was in “..OMG she’s ONE” obsession mode.
..and now I’m in the “OMG she’s ONE” hangover.  
I feel like, over the last three years of being a mom, there was a tremendous change throughout their first year.  year two was sort of slow.. not a lot going on as far as the noticeable life changes, and now right in the thick of year three and holy mackerel.  I look as my kids and they are the tiniest giants.

whats new? .. aside from their daily jobs of being big sisters.
  • their language has exploded.  things they know and say and DO.  half of me has no clue where they pick up these things!  but they are interacting with other kiddos more and pick up a lot from television for sure.
  • speaking of TV.. we watch just an hour or a little more of television a day.  most of the time its right when they wake up in the morning and later in the evening before bed.  
  • favorite shows: team umizoomi (Jolie’s ultimate favorite), bubble guppies, pj masks, peppa pig
  • favorite movies: finding nemo, wall-E, a bug’s life, toy story (all of them!), lady and the tramp, inside out 
  • they looooove to play make believe.  the other night they were playing ‘mama + dadda’ (which is their version of playing house) at lunch with their potato chips.  literally. 
  • when they do play with toys.. they are really into little figurines.  barbies are fine, but they both lose interest really quickly in them.  Jolie especially really loves little dolls or my little ponies.  their BB bought them these mini lalaloopsy dolls (like these ones.. I have found them at walmart, too!) and we have a ridiculous collection now. mini my little ponies and palace pets are favorites, too! 
  • they grew nearly TWO clothing sizes.  I swear there was awhile when I thought we were going to be in size 2T forever. but just after Christmas they hit a growth spurt and 3T was all we knew.. and now at the beginning of the summer I have stuck to buying 4T.  mainly for the length in dresses, tops and pants.  they can still wear the 3T in shorts because they are string beans.  Parker has these legs that go on for days and really takes after my side of the family (my 3 brothers are all about 6’5″ and beam poles.)
  • they are more self sufficient than I would expect. Parker has no problem at all helping herself to whatever food stuff in the pantry.  recently I found Parker on the couch with her third protein/fiber bar, half eaten.  I know there were three because the other two wrappers were shredded and sprinkled across the sofa.  later she was found on the toilet hollering “MOM!  my poo poo is CRAYZEE!”  it was crazy.  everyone would have crazy poo if they consumed 4 times to amount of fiber in one sitting than they should!
  • ..and while we are on the topic of poop.. we have finally hit a point where the girls are taking themselves to the potty when we are at home.  after having a newborn at home and putting them on the potty with one hand while I balance a baby in the other was.. well.. it was annoying:)  they’ve been potty trained since they were about 20 months old, but we’ve still had to take them to the potty (turn on the bathroom light + help them get on the seat + clean them up) up until the last couple months.  I still get a little tickled when I walk by the bathroom and see a tiny human sitting on the potty all by herself. 
  • they are much closer than they have ever been before. they LOVE each other so much and they will tell you that they are each other’s best friend.. of course except the times when Jolie says cousin Kendall is her BFF.  those are also the times they fight like mad and the bickering is at an all time HIGH right now.  
  • they have never been ones to sleep in the same bed or together much at all.. we moved them from the same crib when they were really little because we had to train Jolie to sleep on her weak side with her torticollis around 3-4 months and she basically screamed her head off.  So we separated them.  Recently they have been much more inclined to sleep together and often I find them in the same bed.  We’ve considered getting rid of the twin beds and putting them both in one large queen in their room.
Jolie will pretty much eat me out of house and home.  she loves everything and will nearly try something foreign at least once. she has a handful of things that she doesn’t like- peanut butter and jelly (who is this child?!) and ketchup (again.. who is this child?!).  she prefers ranch dressing on everything and would eat turkey jerky and salami for every single meal if I let her.  she also asks for random things like chicken nuggets and goldfish crackers for breakfast. 
Parker is my picky eater.  she would rather snack all day long on granola bars and yogurt and chocolate milk.  she is a sauce fanatic and wants about three options on her plate when there is dipping involved. I still offer them “chocolate milk” twice a day- morning and evening and a lot of times the morning chocolate milk (carnation instant breakfast) suffices as their breakfast meal until about mid morning when they sit down to eat.  if you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you know that they’ve been drinking carnation for literally 2.5 years.  better than hershey’s syrup and milk, right?  I appreciate that because it allows me to sit and peruse my favorite blogs and drink coffee first thing in the morning before i have to really ‘mom’ for the rest of the day.

7:30-8am: wake
 chocolate milk 
(1/2 packet of carnation instant breakfast + 8 ounces of skim milk/each)
9:30-10am: breakfast
protein english muffin + butter; spoonful of natural peanut butter + fruit (berries and banana usually)
instant oatmeal + yogurt 
sprouted toast with peanut butter + banana 
12pm: lunch
baked chicken nuggets + fruit + yogurt
deli meat + cheese + dry roasted almonds
turkey pepperoni (jolie) peanut butter + jelly (parker) + baked chips (like the wheat thins kind)
3pm: snack
goldfish crackers + dry roasted almonds OR peanut butter crackers OR granola bar
6pm-7pm: dinner
usually its whatever we are eating for dinner.. when its not..
mini homemade pizzas 
chicken nuggets or fish sticks
hot dogs
waffles + peanut butter
bean cakes with guacamole
as you can see we are creatures of habit. we eat a lot of variety but when it comes to things I know my girls will eat we have a handful of items that are basic go-tos.
omg.  where do I even start.  sleep sucks.  
I make such a huge deal about Baker sleeping like a rockstar because I have dealt with and still deal with these two hooligans at all hours of the night.  I don’t understand.  we have tried sound machines, nightlights, sleeping with the door open, door closed, lights on.. all of it.  everything.  
we did find that the “its OK to wake” clock worked the best..
until Parker told me that the clock was broken.  
well, no child.  the clock isn’t BROKEN.  you are awake when the clock hasn’t told you its OK yet.
its really hard not to laugh. no matter what time I put them to bed at night, Parker is awake at all hours and then for the day by 6:30am AT LEAST.  and then refuses to nap.  we don’t take naps everyday, but we always have quite time laying in their bed with books or their baby dolls.  most of the time Jolie will fall asleep, but Parker rarely sleeps.  when we do nap, they’ll sleep about 2 hours in the afternoon.  and then bedtime is about 7:30-8pm.

these girls are something else. 
Jolie is my girly girl.  compliments me on every outfit, makeup, jewelry, and especially my shoes!  she loves my shoes!  that girl has SO much love to give and tells me over and over about a million times a day how much she loves me while throwing her arms around my neck (and her dad, and parker, and baker, and BB.. you get the idea.)  I could not imagine my life without the joy that my Jo Grace brings me.  she and I spend a LOT of time together and I can only hope we remain this close as the years go on.  she has the most gentle soul on the planet- even keeled and reserved for the most part, and the happiest little girl I have ever met. 
Parker is all about her dad.  she’s happiest outside, running around behind him and doing all the things a daddy’s little girl would do.  she doesn’t care about fixing her hair or playing dress up.  she wants her tool belt and her “go fast shoes” (her sneakers).  she’s also bull headed and emotional and pretty aggressive.. which lands her spending a lot of minutes in time out.  my favorite thing about Parker Jane is that she is SO SILLY and her laugh is outrageously amazing.  I have so many moments of laughing until I cry with her.  Parker refuses to share her love and its turned into a game that when she asks for something she has to pay the price of at least ONE SUGAR (kiss).  she knows I want her to just say I love you, and she giggles at me and says “I LIKE you mom.” and scampers off cackling her little head off. 
they have turned into two completely different kids and I love them just the same.
my big girls. 

July 20, 2016

  1. Love those girls of yours!! Mine are all about playing with little Disney dolls all day… They love the little magic clip dolls, shopkins & petshops. When we are out and about, half the time they want to come home inside to play with their dolls!

  2. My twins will be a year on Saturday and I love reading about your big girls. It makes me excited to see how their personalities will differ as they get older and how their twin bond will grow! 🙂 My 3 year old is just like your Jolie, all girl!

  3. Samantha B says:

    Just wanted to let you know that you are not alone, my almost 3 and a half year old cannot make it through the night still either and wakes up at the crack of dawn (or earlier). We've also tried ev-er-y-thing but apparently she just doesn't need as much sleep as the rest of the planet. When they're 13 we'll be kicking them out of bed, right?!

  4. That picture with Parker and her drink!! So precious!! And Jolie's gorgeous eyes in every shot piercing through you… Love it!

  5. Amber, I absolutely love your blog and hearing about your girls. I'm an identical twin and I really believe that twins try to define themselves relative to their twin sister. So if one is girly, the other tends to be less girly and more tom-boy. That's how my sister and I are too. I never understood how special it is to be a twin until we went to separate colleges. The distance was helpful because we no longer were compared to each other by everyone regarding EVERYTHING (who's taller/prettier/smarter/more athletic/etc. UGH). Maybe it's less so with fraternal twins but constant comparison is hard. Anyways, they will always have a special bond and are very lucky girls!!!