Thursday, December 25, 2008

Four Generations

While Great-Grandma Hannold was in Brockway today for Christmas we managed to take a picture of the four generations on that side of the family: Great-Grandma Hannold, My Mom, Me, and Colin & Gillian.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Babies 2.0

Here you see an example of the so-called interactivity that Lea has labeled "Babies 2.0". Gillie-bean appears to like a purple seal (now named Percival) that came with here island-themed tummy-time play-yard. I'm not really sure where the seal fits into the island theme, but anyway Percival is her favorite. In the video below, Percival talks with the little Bean and gives her a kiss. The Bean accepts Percival's affection and smiles in return. This is pretty much the extent of the interactivity exhibited by Gillie’s implementation of Babies 2.0.

While limited in scope, Babies 2.0 is still preferable to Babies 1.0... Mommy is anxiously awaiting Babies 2.5 - Sleep-through-the-Night Edition.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Some Milestones

Gillie and Colin have started to be more "interactive" lately. Babies 2.0 as I tell Michael. They are awake a little more, more interested in looking around, and are beginning those first social interactions. Colin had his first smile around week 6 and Gillian a week later. They are still pretty fleeting, so they are hard to capture on camera. They are also starting to coo and squeal, which is music to my ears. Here's a picture of Gillian with her first favorite toy, Percival the Purple Seal. He came with this HUGE tummy time mat that Santa delivered early to our house. When you rattle him and make him kiss Gillie's face she gets this great smile and, I swear, is the next thing to giggling. Very cute, I assure you.

Getting Ready for Christmas, or Not Colin's Fav

So, on top of taking care of two 8 week old babies (yes, they are 8 weeks old today!), we're doing the whole Christmas thing. Well, maybe not the "whole" thing. I've been taking it pretty easy with buying gifts and decorating, and as much as I would like, no homemade cookies this year. But, we did put up a little 3' artificial tree (we usually have a 6' real tree) and have up a few other things. I dressed the babies in two of their Christmas outfits the other day and took a couple pictures. Gillian was very pleasant and, for once, not skeptical. Colin on the other hand, was not a happy little man. Here are a couple of my pictures (note that I took these, not Michael, so they aren't up to par).

Gillie looking cute:


Colin not being happy, but still cute:

One together:

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Wearing Daddy's Onesies

During my summer/fall of restricted activity, I had a small amount of time on my hands (what did I do with all that time??), and I discovered the joys of internet shopping. I also wanted to get Michael a small gift for the day the babies were born that would be special to him. So, I found a site that makes personalized onesies and I thought, "Aha! That would be perfect!" So, I ordered two special onesies for us in size 0-3 months and they finally fit!

Here's Gillian:

If you can't read it, her shirt says, "Space: Not Just for Boys Anymore." Michael feels very strongly that both children will do well in math and science and will find gainful employment as some sort of scientist, especially Gillian. When I was pregnant and talking about the babies' future, he told me "You know, space isn't just for boys anymore." So, Gillie proudly wears her shirt! Also, she continues her streak of looking skeptical in photos.

Here's Colin:

When Michael was a little guy himself, he would often ask his Dad to tell him about steam. It is an infamous Uhl story. So, naturally, Colin will learn about the beauty of steam at an early age.

In fact, the presence of the onesies this week prompted a space lecture and a steam lecture. Michael asked the babies after work one night what their Mommy had taught them about space and steam. My response was, "Not much," so, we definitely need Daddy.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Ready for Their Close-Ups

Today we were taking some pictures that Grandma RoRo had requested and managed to snag a couple nice individual photos of the kids. C-Man...

Smith Family Thanksgiving

Here's the end of our Thanksgiving pictures!! We had Thanksgiving lunch with my mom's side of the family the Saturday after Thanksgiving, and it was the first time that most of my family met C&G.

Great-aunt Sue LOVES babies, and especially loves giving babies baths. I don't particularly like giving baths, because C&G don't really like them yet.

Colin getting clean

Gillie's turn:

My twin cousins, Isaiah and Bernie, met C&G and we took the traditional "Twins holding Twins" picture. Isaiah was Twin A and he's holding our twin A (Colin); Bernie was Twin B and he's holding our twin B (Gillie).

And finally, we tried to get a picture of all four great-grandchildren together. They aren't he best, but they are funny in that Sarah is SO much bigger than the twins!! Benjamin was also a good sport in the pictures!!


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

C & G Meet the Keisters or The Bean to Bean Connection

On the Friday night following Thanksgiving we celebrated my Dad's birthday with the Keisters as is our tradition. This was the first meeting between the twins and the Keisters though Colin and Gillian already felt that they knew Jessica as a result of her blogging. Mrs. Kathy was supposed to come down with my parents when Great Grandma Hannold visited, but was unable to make the trip. So, there was much excitement for the meeting. After dinner the twins got up and came out to visit. Mrs. Kathy took a turn holding Colin and my Mom held the Gillie-Bean.
However, this was the last baby holding that Mrs. Kathy would get to do, as her kids soon stole C & G. Jessica (a.k.a. Jessie-Bean) traveled the whole way from Ottawa for Thanksgiving and to meet Colin and Gillian:
Joe was back from Erie on Thanksgiving break and got to know Colin:
Joe told Colin that he would educate him about planes and other vehicles, while Jessie informed Gillian about the contemporary art on display at her museum in Canada... there seemed to be a particularly strong Bean-to-Bean connection.
More pictures on Flickr.

Some of our Thanksgiving Visiting

So we had a very busy Thanksgiving holiday; it was the first time that Colin and Gillian had made the trek north to Brockway/DuBois. They traveled very well and slept the entire time in the car (Mommy slept some too!). Michael and I were excited to go "home" for the holiday too since we hadn't been there since the Fourth of July due to all of our pregnancy complications. Here are just the beginning of our Thanksgiving pictures.

Colin with his Great-grandpa Bish:

Great-grandma Bish wasn't feeling well, so she didn't get to hold the babies, but she said she'd take double the turns at Christmas.

Gillian with Aunt Emily:

Uncle Stevie and Aunt Emily got to meet the babies too! Uncle Stevie declined to hold them, but Aunt Emily scooped them up pretty quickly.

Colin and Gillie also got to meet their cousin Becky, her fiance Haiko, and their Great-aunt Ruth.




Lots more pictures to follow as the babies allow Daddy time to get them on the internet!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Family Portraits

So Grandma and Grandpa Uhl decided that they would like to have a portrait of them with C&G. I was happy to oblige:
Though this reminded Lea that we still didn't have a picture of the four of us all together, so we got Grandpa Frank to take one:

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Snow Babies

Al has thought for a while that we needed to introduce the children to snow... so that they wouldn't be afraid of it later in life. I'm not sure why they would be afraid of snow, but I guess Al is concerned that they may be over coddled. Anyway, on their way to Great Grandpa/Grandma Smith's house today, we stopped to take their photo next to the snow for Al's gratification:

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Hanging out with Mum and Daddy

Some shots from our weekend cuddles....

Daddy with Colin

Gillie with Mummy.

Babies in Space....

Colin and Gillian just chillin' on their Astronaut Quilt. They like to lay on the living room floor and look out the front window.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Four Week Check-up

Believe it or not, our babies are four weeks old today! They saw the pediatrician for a well-baby check up this morning. Mr. Colin is now weighing in at 5 lbs 11 oz and 19.25 inches long. Miss Gillie is slightly smaller at 5 lbs 3 oz and 19.25 inches long. The doctor was very pleased with both of them! They also got their first shot today. Babies are now supposed to get their Hep B shot in the hospital after birth, but I wasn't wild about that idea, so we waited. So, now that they are a little bigger and I am a little less nervous, we started the Hep B series today. Next month they get 3 or 4 shots and oral polio. Poor babies, but they did do well today. Their cheeks are even starting to get a little chubby (a LITTLE chubby).

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Thank heavens for Uncle David


So we don't have much family that lives within close distance of us, but thankfully we have Uncle David and Aunt Mercedes! (Uncle Willis lives close too, but he is reserving his uncle duties until the babies can talk) Last Sunday, David came over just to help out for a while in the afternoon. Unfortunately, Aunt Mercedes had to work, but she's coming to help tomorrow on her day off. I can tell you that Michael and I are very, very grateful for their help as we have decided that the optimal ratio of caring for newborn twins is actually 3 adults to 2 babies. So while he was visiting, Uncle D changed multiple diapers, cuddled lots of babies, and kept Gillian awake before bed so she would sleep (not a pleasant task as she gets pretty cranky). All this allowed Michael to putz on the computer some and for me to get a nap! Thanks Uncle D!!

Meeting More Family (especially ones named Jane!)

A couple of weekends ago we had some more family come to meet the babies. I am finally getting around to posting some pictures; if you can imagine, we're a little busy at our house!

First is Samantha with Colin. Samantha loves babies right now and they seem to be pretty partial to her too. She really didn't want to leave them at the end of the day; she thought they'd be too big by the next time she saw them 3 weeks later at Thanksgiving!

The same day Great-grandma Smith came to meet the little ones. She, of course, thought the babies were beautiful and perfect! Gillian was particularly fond of Great-grandma.


We are so lucky to have such amazing family that are willing to travel so much to see our babies! We can't wait to see everyone again next week for Thanksgiving. The babies have heard alot about turkey and can't wait to try it.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


So we gave you all of the vitals on the kids back when they were born, but Daddy just found out that the CDC has all of the pediatric growth charts (and underlying data!) on the web. Being an engineer, this data is somewhat irresistible to me, rife with opportunities to plot data from my own children. Not only to plot the actual data, but to eventually make completely fantastic and inaccurate extrapolations. So, shown below are three charts for each youngling: weight for age, length for age, and weight for stature... and because I'm clearly sexist, Colin's charts are presented in shades of blue and Gillian's are in shades of red.

Colin and Gillian's data have some interesting curve shapes due to two main reasons: 1 babies loose weight after birth, and 2 the length measurements made at the hospital were longer than those made at the pediatrician's office. Because of these anomalies I decided to wait for a few more data points to come along before we start our extrapolations showing that each child will eventually reach seven feet in height.

Tart Hats with Actual Sleeping Baby Faces™

Well, the Bean's tart hats arrived in the mail sometime within the past week and a half. Really I can't be more precise, as I'm lucky I know which day of the week it is... I believe that today is Sunday. Anyway, given Jessica's love of baby pictures, it seemed appropriate that we should take some pictures of the younglings wearing their new headgear. You'll note the "Actual Sleeping Baby Faces™".
We like "Actual Sleeping Baby Faces™", and we like the new tart hats!
P.S. I don't have a nifty color reference card, so unlike the Bean's photos, my photos don't feature include one. Art conservationists in the the future probably will lament their absence.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Math's Lecture

So last evening we had the rare treat of having both babies awake and pleasant for several hours. Daddy took this as an opportunity to give the babies a lecture on metric vs. English units and converting between the two. So, he instructed Gillie and Colin on how much mass they had and the difference between mass and weight and how much gravity is on Earth. It was highly enlightening. I can say that Gillie seemed very interested, but Colin seemed to prefer looking at the light. All in all, I think that Daddy enjoyed himself the most. It was very cute.

The babies then proceeded to have an awful night and no one got any sleep! Maybe the maths were too exciting.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Touchdown Penn State!


Photo Downloads

Almost all of the pictures on the blog are hosted on Flickr which is a totally awesome photo sharing website. One of the nicest features is that it hosts original (high-) resolution versions of the photos appropriate for printing. So, for grandparents and others who would like printed photos this would seem like a convenient way to get them the image files. Alas, if you haven't used Flickr before, it's not immediately obvious how you would download the pictures. Well, here's a brief tutorial...

First, if you click on one of the pictures in the blog, you should be taken to a Flickr web page about that photo. Above the photo there should be a little magnifying glass icon with a label reading "ALL SIZES" as shown in the image below:

Clicking on this icon will take you to a new page where you can select any one of a number of different sized versions of the photo. Pick the link that says "Original", as shown below:

Now you have two options that will allow you to save a copy of the picture on your computer. You can either right click on the photo and choose "Save Picture As..." (note that the exact text of this menu may differ based on the browser you are using), or you can simply click on the link that says "Download the Original Size". The figure below illustrates both options.

So, that's all there is to it. Go forth and download.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Meeting Great-Grandma Hannold and other family

Grandma and Grandpa Uhl came down to visit this past weekend and they brought Great-Grandma Hannold along to meet Colin and Gillian. Grandma seemed to be pretty taken with them:
Of course Grandma and Grandpa Uhl seemed kind of partial to them as well:
Then, later in the week Extraordinary Aunt Sharon and Great-Uncle Ray stopped by to meet the little ones: