Monday, November 25, 2013

November 25 - 30, 2013 - SF

Monday, November 25.  Happy Birthday to my daughter-in-law, Tracey!  Wow!  She was born the year that I graduated from high school.  I feel old.

This week has started on a good note.  I was with the twins for about 3 hours today and I enlists the help of my friend, Marta.  She said that she even cut her fingernails last night so she would be prepared for handling babies.  They were quiet and ate well for us.  Jill treated us to some yummy sandwiches and a pastry from La Boulange for lunch.

The upstairs neighbor stopped by to see if any of us had heard any noises from the basement last night, as her husband's golf clubs and mountain bike were stolen from the garage.  Later on, when he got home, he discovered that all of his hunting equipment was also missing.  It doesn't seem like any of Ben and Jill's stuff was taken but then, they don't have a lot of high tech stuff down there.  I sleep right over the area where the clubs were and I never heard a thing.  For years, I have been the lightest of sleepers but not recently.  My days are so full that when I hit the bed, I am out.  

I have always envied Mike's ability to sleep anywhere at any time, even when even when I was driving.  Ha!  Recently, I have been able to enjoy it myself.

Thursday, November 28.  Happy Thanksgiving to all of my wonderful family and friends!  I am thankful to have you in my life.  Unfortunately, my day hasn't been too happy.  I started feeling ill around 4:30 this morning and haven't improved.  I have been holed up in Ben and 
Jill's room most of the day.  Their friends, Joan, Kerry, Henry and Penelope are here to share the dinner.  We decided there was no way we could manage a big dinner, so we bought the prepared dinner from Whole Foods.  Everything is precooked and just has to be warmed when it gets here.  The smells from the kitchen are yummy?  I don't think I will be having any today, as even simple crackers are not sitting well.  Top that all with the depressing thought of a holiday without Mike and I would like to crawl in a hole.

I spent some time with the twins alone this week and was feeling fortunate that they weren't hungry or fussing at the same time. It went well both times.

Friday, November 29.  Well, I missed out on Thanksgiving dinner and the togetherness of family but I did wake up feeling better today.  I'm certainly not feeling good, but definitely feeling better than 
I did yesterday.  I started slow with food this morning and was able to have leftovers for lunch.  Ben is working from home today, so he took his break this morning and we all walked to the playground.  It is an absolutely gorgeous day here and it felt good to get outdoors for a breath of fresh air.

Jill made a large pot of turkey noodle soup for dinner and we will get at least 3 meals out of it.

Saturday, November 30.  My stomach is feeling much better today.   My morning started with a nice FaceTime conversation with Pat and Tracey.  Charlotte really warmed up to them when he showed her his cats.  That really broke the ice and then she talked to him a lot.  

We had some interesting ways of using up the Thanksgiving leftovers and have actually gotten about 6 meals out of half a turkey dinner.  Ben made a breakfast casserole this morning with leftover dressing put in a buttered baking dish, indentations made and eggs out in them, topped with grated parmesan cheese and baked until the eggs were done - yummy!  For dinner, we made Potato Croquettes - leftover mashed potatoes and diced turkey, an egg and some flour added to bind, rolled in balls, dipped in flour, then egg, then bread crumbs and fried to a golden brown - delicious!  A little more time consuming than we expected though.

The twins are getting stronger every day, lifting their heads and looking right at you when you hold them.  They are also starting to smile and make some cooing sounds.

Norah Lou

Camille Rose

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.  Elf on the Shelf came out and the story was read at least 3 times, the stockings were hung on the fireplace, and we got a Christmas tree today.  The fun begins.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

November 18 - 24, 2013 - SF

Monday, November 18.  Jill took the twins in to be weighed this morning and got good news that Norah gained 7 ounces and Camille gained 9, mostly from nursing.  They are 6 weeks old today. The Bridge team is doing a great job and it is true, it does take a village.

Tuesday, November 19.  We were off to the JC Penney photo studio this morning and had to have the 3 kids and ourselves ready to leave here by 9:30.  It was only 20 minutes later when we loaded up the car.  Kind of chaotic with Charlotte changing her clothes every 10 minutes, putting her shoes on and then taking them off, the twins getting diapers changed, then filling them again before you even get them buttoned up, and trying to get ourselves ready too.

Charlotte was fascinated with the mall and all of the Christmas decorations, and we let her play in the mall playground before doing photos.  She was not into the photo shoot at all.  If the photographer had been more experienced, he would have captured at least a couple of shots of her and her sisters before she would have no more of it.  They got several shots of the twins but none of them were really great.

And then when we got back home, Charlotte didn't even take a nap.  She laid in her crib for over an hour but never did sleep.  

Wednesday, November 20.  Today's plan:  drop Charlotte off at Maggie's, do the grocery run, make granola, make spaghetti for dinner.  Today's actual: Charlotte woke up vomiting, clean up and do laundry, take shower, Charlotte vomits, clean up, do more laundry, bathe Charlotte, repeat this twice more, quick trip to Fresh and Easy and CVS (neighborhood stores) for necessaries, Charlotte sleeps most of the afternoon and is ready for bed early, Ben picked up burritos for dinner.  In between, helping with twins.  

Poor Charlotte, she was worried that she made a mess, kept asking "what did CC do?", she even told us that it was a sad day.  I just felt so helpless.  It was also a gray and rainy day all day - that doesn't help you to have a good mood.

I'm tired.  Good night.

Thursday, November 21.  Today has been better, Charlotte is feeling better but still running a slight fever.  I wasn't feeling completely up to par though, maybe just tired out from yesterday.  I kind of felt on the verge of coming down with something all day.  We shall see.

Friday, November 22.  I am remembering the loss of President John F Kennedy fifty years ago today.  A sad, sad, event for our country.  I remember coming home from school that day to a very sad mother who thought the world of that man.

I woke up feeling just fine this morning - yay!  We have a lot of catching up to do, as little gets done when CHwrlotte is around, she is such a busy, jabbering gal (she kind of talks nonstop) these days and being sick doesn't help.  So... After breakfast I dropped her off at daycare, stopped at the credit union, got groceries at TJs, got the rest of the groceries at Cal Mart, had some lunch, went for a nice walk with Jill and the twins, helped with bathtime, cut up veggies for snacks, and started to prep dinner.  Whew!  Now I have a few moments to write a bit.

The weather was gorgeous today.

Sunday, November 24.  Here we are, approaching the week of Thanksgiving already, the last week of November, and the end if my 3rd week here in SF.  Each week, there have been noticeable differences in the twins development.  They are growing so quickly.

We try to have big breakfasts on the weekends, so Ben made bacon, eggs, hash browns and toast yesterday and I made biscuits and gravy today.  They all had a birthday party to go to yesterday, so I had a couple of hours to just enjoy the quiet house.  I lounged in the tub, made a couple of phone calls, had a glass of wine, and watched a couple of episodes of Arrested Development.

Today, Ben and I took the 4 girls (we can't forget Ruby-doo) for a walk - it's another beautiful sunny day.

This weeks photos of my girls:

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

November 11 - 17, 2013 -SF

Tuesday, November 12.  Yesterday was Veterans's Day and in honor of Mike, we made his favorite casserole for dinner, Mrs. Gumtow's.  This was one of his go to dishes whenever he was the cook.  I will share because everyone who has tried it, loves it.

Mrs Gumtow’s Casserole

1 lb hamburger
1 lb bacon, cut in 1” pieces
1 onion, chopped
1 ½ to 2 cups of wide egg noodles
shredded cheddar cheese
1 bottle Del Monte Chili Sauce (no substitutes)
1 can Del Monte peas (no substitutes)
2 dashes bitters
1 tbsp ketchup

Brown bacon, drain (leaving approximately 1 tbsp of grease in pan).  Place bacon in a 9 x 12 baking pan.  Saute onions in remaining bacon grease until clear.  Add onions to bacon.  Brown hamburger and add to other ingredients in pan.  While burger is browning, cook noodles.  Add noodles.  Add ketchup, bitters, juice from peas, and chili sauce.  Mix gently.  Add peas & mix gently.  Sprinkle shredded cheese on top and bake at 325° for 30 minutes.

This morning, Charlotte and I headed off to the zoo, in hopes of catching the feeding of the penguins.  With a few minutes before feeding time, we headed off to see the baby gorilla and all of the gorilla's we're active this morning, including the big silverback who was quite interested in us.  We made it to the penguins just in time to catch the last if the feeding.  Most of our time was spent at the petting zoo.

Friday, November 14.  What a week!  These 3 little girls really know how to keep 2 adults busy all day long.  It's been a long week for Ben, as he has gone back to work but is busy before and after.  Jill and I are going nonstop with maybe a 1-hour quiet time each afternoon.  Jill had a doctor appointment on Wednesday, so I went along and the twins stayed fast asleep in their car seats while she was seeing her doctor. Yesterday, she took Charlotte to a play day and I stayed home with them.  She got back just in time, to sac me from having to feed them both at the same time.   My world is full of diaper changes, shushing, feeding, burping, and keeping up with Charlotte.  Whew!

Mike has now been gone for 9 months and I could really use the comfort of him being around and having a hug whenever I need it.  I miss him every single day, but anniversaries even more so - something about a date that you remember keeps it right up front all day long.  It was an emotional day for me.

The cleaning lady came today, so Jill and I packed up the twins and went for a nice long walk (it's s beautiful day) with a stop at the Garden Cafe for some lunch.  We got home just as Betty and her staff were leaving.  It is quiet now, not for long, so I'm going to just shut my eyes and take a brief nap.

Sunday, November 17.  Well, it has been a good week all around.  Ben and his family got some time in together yesterday morning with a walk to the playground.  I did the grocery shopping while they were gone.  Today, Some friends took Charlotte for a play day and the 3 of us took the twins and 
Ruby for a walk.  Like I said, a good week.some recent photos:

Two fisted drinker.
Grandma coddles both at one time.
One way to get a nap.

Monday, November 4, 2013

November 4 - 10, 2013 - Back to SF

Monday, November 4.  I met up with the usual group of walkers this morning, so I had a chance to say goodbye.  I just love these little gatherings with friends and I'm going to miss them.

Oh my, will I be able to fit everything in my suitcase?  I sorted things out - again and I think I will make it.  A trip to the local CVS will be necessary though.  Also, the purchase of a giant piece of luggage might have to be added to the "things to buy" list.

I made it to SF after an uneventful trip.  My flight was not full, in fact, the giant that was sitting in the middle seat next to me was able to move to one of the exit row seats and we were all happy about that.  We even took off about 10 minutes early.  The shuttle ride to Ben's house was also not bad.

And then I got to meet Norah and Camille.  They are so tiny!  And very sleepy too.  Charlotte was in bed by the time I arrived, so bright and early tomorrow morning, I get to see her again.  I'm sure she has changed a lot in the last 6 weeks.

Tuesday, November 5.  I heard Charlotte stirring this morning, so I went to her bedroom door.  She gave me a great big smile and reached for me and said "Grandma Rose, you went away".  I told her that I came back and she said it as ok for me to stay awhile.  We read stories and had some breakfast, then later on we were off to the playground.  She has gone through a growth spurt and is now speaking in complete sentences and expressing herself very clearly.  We had fun at the playground and she had to show me her new climbing skills.

It is a whirlwind around here, something happening constantly.  The twins aren't quite up to speed on the nursing thing, so the routine seems to be to nurse, to follow up with bottles, Jill pumps, they get changed, then a couple of hours later, it starts all over again, throughout the day.  They are coming around, gaining weight, and looking healthy.  Ben is back to work this week (from home).  

By 9:00, we are all pooped and ready to call it a day.  It may be a little more laid back on the days that Charlotte goes to daycare.  We shall see.

Thursday, November 7.  Happy 1 Month Birthday to my beautiful twin granddaughters.  Too bad, they are both conjested and fussy today.

Friday, November 8.  Today is my brother-in-law Dan's birthday and it is sad that he didn't live to even see his Medicare birthday.  I miss hearing from him and I know that his family back home is having a hard day today.

After dropping Charlotte off at daycare this morning, I went to the brand new Target store at the end of Geary St, as a humidifier is needed to help clear up the twins' nasal congestion.  We all managed to get showers in after I got back home - they have to be squeezed in whenever there is a quiet moment. Ben took his lunch break so we could all go for a nice walk together with Norah and Camille in their new stroller.  

Sunday, November 11.  The weekend has flown right by.  The family was able to get out for a walk and playtime at the playground with Charlotte and Jill's friend, Joan, came for a visit and brought us lunch on Sunday.  

Charlotte is all about playing with anything that is for the babies.  Check out the difference is sizes here where she was convinced that she could fit in a newborn pj.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

November 1 - 3, 2013 - AZ

Saturday, November 2.  Yesterday, several girlfriends and I headed out to Val Vista Lakes for their community garage sales.  The number of sales was a bit disappointing but we all managed to find something.  My lucky find was identical outfits for the twins.  I could hardly resist but I had to hold back because I don't  have that much room in my suitcase to carry all of the stuff I have set aside to take with me.

I've been getting things together for my trip back to SF and this activity upsets Frisco.  He is hiding, pouting, and not eating as he should.  He will be staying at my house with Pat, Roger, and Louie and will adjust to that change of routine in no time.

Sunday, November 3.  Connie, Pat, Roger, the 2 dogs and I are heading out for a desert hike this morning.  I better get in gear.

I met a young guy a while back that told me about the Meridian Trail, so that is where we headed.  Connie knew that if you took Meridian drive to the parking area that you could hike along there.  The short trail from the parking lot actually leads to the Pass Mountain trail that circles Usery State Park.  We headed to the left but soon found that the trail wasn't very well marked, so we returned to our starting point and headed the other direction.  That trail was clearly marked but became really rocky, so we turned around and headed back.  By the time we got back to our starting point again, we had walked for almost 1 1/2 hours - and we all agreed that was plenty.

Dry Wash

I decided that I should spend as much time outdoors today as I can - it certainly won't be this warm when I get to SF.  So I read, relaxed, crocheted, and napped out on the patio or in the back yard.

Arlene invited me to join her, Charla, and Tom for dinner and she made BBQ ribs, mashed potatoes, yummy Brussels sprouts and cherry pie.  That prevented me from having the bean soup that I've already had for 3 other meals in the last week or so.  Thanks, Arlene!