Friday, March 31, 2006

Snaps: cute and quirky vol.1

This is the new title replacing the Ivan funnies series, since we are about to add to our potential material. I also realized along the way that these quick snapshots are not always funny, but sometimes just pricelessly sweet. So here you have them!

A cool day at the school park. Ivan can get on the slides by himself now and make it up most the stairs.

Ivan trying to ride Saba, who doesn't like this honor of being the household riding horse.

Ivan's latest pleasure is to empty out a tub of toys or books and sit in it all scrunched up.

Brian was cleaning the windows and Ivan was supervising I guess. He was very much intrigued in any case. I thought this picture is mesmerizing with the way it picked up Ivan's reflection in the window.

Other funny and not so funny... Ivan has picked his new sound, but it's not of an animal. If we ask Ivan what the cat says, he replies "meow", if we ask what sound a dog makes, he says "dog" (that one needs a little work). He makes the noise for cow and horse when he sees their pictures. But his newest one beats all. If he sees a picture of a mug, he says "haw, haw" (hot) while waving his arm (our sign for hot)! Didn't know mugs make noises!

He has also been taking his cereal or some other object, throwing it on the floor then yelling "no!" This is the not so funny part!

If we wink at him, he tries to do the same, but it comes out as a prolonged blink- it's really cute!

Ivan is learning to say his name, only he says "Iya". I'll try to post a sound bite soon.

Happy April fools day! So, do you "celebrate" this most weird holiday? Do you do a prank? Do you like doing pranks or having them done to you?

Thursday, March 30, 2006

oh,oh, Canadianism

Not so long ago, I posted about prejudices, which are oh, so easy to see in others, but much more difficult to swallow when it's in ourselves. I discovered a prejudice stemming from my Canadian roots. We have this cool shirt from Canada that we love to dress Ivan in. I feel some pride when he wears it and remember as we go that he is part Canadian.

Then I found this shirt in his drawer and my first thought was: "propaganda". Why was the Canada shirt good natured nationalism and cute and the USA shirt "propaganda". Sorry to all my American friends, I've been found out! I think this is a real attitude in Canada, any flag waving or national pride we see as good, but look to our neighbors in the South and think it's imposing, threatening or overly commercialized.

While Canada does not wave it's flag near as much as American's, Brian was quick to point out all the maple leafs in logos and even on my parent's mailbox! Touché. He also said that Canada's flag is cool and makes for a great logo. Oh, yeah... go Canada!

Well Ivan has a shirt to wear both Canada day and the fourth of July (notice the subdued American reference to the holiday and the more blatant Canadian one! This is so shocking to me!) Of course, I'm sure my Canadian family is still rooting for our girl to be born early on July 1st and my American family is hoping for a day late on July 4th. All I have to say is, both countries have their good sides and bad. No place is perfect and we shouldn't place so much emphasis on who is better. We are all equals no matter where we were born or where we live. In fact, our diversity of thought, cultures and languages adds beautiful dimensions to life and gives it so much spice, interest and adventure. Due to this realization, I SHOULD be equally happy if she is born on the American holiday or Canadian one, but then she may choose something like the 2nd of July and quiet this little rivalry once and for all. Really, Brian has the best philosophy. Why pick one or the other to celebrate? Party the 1st THROUGH the 4th. Life is too short for squabbles, but attitudes and deep rooted impressions are hard to break!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006


I stole this idea from my PREGNANT sister, Jenn who posted pics of a baby at her baby's developmental stage. But when I went online to find pics of babies at 26 weeks, I was shocked to see they are all grown! I knew time was going fast and have read some development sites, but it just hit me recently that we don't have long to go. I'm in the last trimester and made a list of projects to finish before the baby arrives and I have to do about one a week to be done on time, yikes!

They call it nesting. Some women clean, knit, sew or bake, but somewhere along the lines, my wires must have gotten crossed, because I pull out the jig saw and paint and build things. Well, so far, I've made the letters for our daughters name out of cardboard and felt (which required a lot of glue and even some sewing). Now that the Betty Crocker in me is satisfied, out comes Tim the Toolman Taylor.

We are going to move Ivan into the front room, but decided it needed to look fun too, like the baby room, so we are going to paint, make another shuttered picture and um... some... other... furniture. The thing is, I'm not willing to stick a thousand dollar toy box that will hold all of three toys in Ivan's room (I saw it on some hoity-toity site with a fancy name, can you believe it!!!) Shasha calls me ghetto for making things home-made. Brian says I'm cheap and can't compare everything to my first car ($500- Toyota, ran all over or small wooden, UNFINISHED box?) So, I'm building a reading nook/toy box/book shelf all in one.

I'm not sure if I'm nesting or crazy, 'cause I've never actually built a piece of furniture, but dad made our bunk beds and grandpa always said he'd built 7 barns, so I'm hoping it will come naturally??? Prayers are appreciated.

I'm also working on her clock and some other stuff. I was told that I have to do all the same things that I did for Ivan for each of my children and have taken on the challenge!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006


I'm sure we've mentioned before that Ivan has 3 awesome sets of grandparents. It seems this group is making up for lost relationship from my generation. In January, Brian's dad visited. His mom visited this month and my parents will be down this summer. We are also looking forward to Auntie Jenn and Uncle John's visit over Easter break. I know it is long miles, expense and effort, but they all go above and beyond and make us all feel royal. Of course Ivan laps up all the attention. We've appreciated so much our family and friends. Our children have everything they need and we haven't had to stress about any of it. I'm excited that our children will have such special ties to relatives that love them so very much.

Monday, March 27, 2006

suddenly pregnant

I've read a dozen times that each pregnancy is different, but I guess I didn't really believe it. The pregnancy which produced Ivan does not seem that long ago, so I thought I knew how this one would go. Like the last one! Au contraire, this one is already so different. I gained a lot of weight with Ivan- 45lbs, which was no big deal as it was coming on gradually about 5lbs a month. I just slowly got bigger, and bigger and bigger. I didn't even realize how big I'd gotten until I saw a picture of myself from the week before we delivered. I was shocked. I didn't notice so much as it was all in front of me. I didn't understand when the books said I would wake up one morning and find that I was suddenly big.

That's what has happened this time. I've barely gained any weight (compared to last time), but all of a sudden, now at month 6, I woke up and found that I am quickly loosing my lap, some chairs are uncomfortable, I get short of breath and have some heartburn. I never experienced all that until near the end with Ivan, which kind of freaks me out. But it's so weird to have these symptoms when I know I'm not near as big as I was the last time I experienced all this. So it goes! I guess this is a reminder that the same will be with our child when she is born. I can't just assume that everything that's worked or hasn't with Ivan will be the same with her. I'll need to discover who she is and how to best nurture her with her personality in mind.

Other exciting news in the pregnancy department... My sister is expecting!!! I think I've given her plenty of time to get the news out or for friends to see it from her on her blog (about 2 whole weeks). I'm so thrilled. The night she called to tell me the news, I barely slept. Our babies will only be about 4 months apart (she's due about the 10th of Nov. but will probably deliver earlier than that). Of course my first pang was realizing that these cousins are so far from each other, but we will do our best to stay close ;) How fun, how fun!!! I'm looking forward to being an auntie and mom of two all in the same year. And to think how mom wanted grandchildren so much and now we're multiplying!

Saturday, March 25, 2006

babies don't come prejudiced

Ivan discovered his two-dimentional dark friend the other night as we walked home from dinner with Big Buddy. We have a bright street light at the end of our driveway and as Ivan and I walked, he started laughing. I noticed he was looking at our shadows, so I waved and said hi. He in turn bent over, touched his shadow and called out "hi" to his little 2-D buddy. He also thought it funny that his friend grew as we got closer to the house and wanted to follow his shadow through the yard or up the wall, wherever it was headed!

People down here are very skin-color conscious. It's like they are so into their individual heritages and since being a minority is the "in" thing, people cling to their chosen cultural realm. Then our family shows up and throws everyone for a loop. The kids are especially confused about it. Brian says I have the best of all worlds because I can easily blend into several crowds. People will accept me as black, hispanic or white, not that I would classify myself as any of those. I like to choose "other" on the questionaires (if they have it), or if I was writing the questionaire, I would put a box entitled: "who really cares? and if you do, why do you think that is? Please explain bellow" Kids here often ask what "I am" and therefore what Ivan "is". I've already had comments pertaining to our next child (ok, so it was from a socially deranged friend), but where did he get the prejudice? It's not from birth that's for sure.

Ivan loves everyone, except for a few male adults which freak the bejeebees out of him and we're not sure why- although he's probably in tune to something we don't pick up. He loves kids most of all, and now his shadow and of course animals. Basically, if it moves, he says "hi" or tries to communicate as that person does. At dinner, Big Buddy was chewing on his meat, but with his dentures, it was pretty noisy. So Ivan started imitating the smacking. He also likes to make smacking noises when Brian takes out a piece of gum. If someone coughs, Ivan also fake coughs. It's his way of communicating I guess. For that matter, he loves inanimate objects with faces too. He was carrying a cloth, toy bunny and giving it kisses and very upset with me for not letting it in the bath with him.

I guess while he doesn't discriminate based on color or culture, we will eventually have to teach him the social appropriateness of not kissing everyone. The other day at a store, a little girl came up to him and he leaned toward her saying "mmmmm". Her mom said he wanted to lay his head on her, but I said he was leaning in for a kiss (he was, that's his way of kissing). She made her daughter stay clear of us after that! Maybe the mom has already forgotten that beautiful innocence of a toddler who makes friends and loves so readily and quickly!

Myka's mom Jenni (see link on side-bar) and I have laughed about how well we could confuse people by hanging out together. When I take Ivan and Myka out, people assume Myka is mine because we have similar coloring. Ivan's skin tone is more like Jenni's. Both our kids adopted their daddy's coloring and demonstrate other attributes from their moms, that are more than skin deep!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Times are -a- changin!

When my little brother, born in 1979, was 2 or 3 years old, he was fascinated with keys. He was constantly taking (and losing) the car keys and loved to hold, play and I'm sure chew them. He also loved to drive the car, which I remember him doing to our horror at least once. (Remember, we have to warm up the car in Canada and on at least one occasion, dad dashed in to get some forgotten item and Andrew threw the car in neutral, but we lived in a hill-like driveway, which caused him and his frantic sis. in the car to suddenly dart into the busy street). Well, the fascination with keys is not near what it used to be. Ivan has toy keys and has taken them to try our locks (this amazed me, since we haven't conciously taught him this). But this is not his real fascination.

The real attraction for kids of every age is now... can you guess it?

Phones! He loves his toy phones and our real ones, but if neither of these are available, it really doesn't matter. He's substituted all sorts of toys, remote controls and even keys to play phone. But perhaps the funniest was when he used a wet washcloth as a telephone. I guess he had an urgent call to make and what else should you use when you're all wet in the tub with few resources, the frog tub toy? So he chatted with who knows who on his soggy cloth cell phone while mom strolled down memory lane recalling her brother's fascination with keys and wondering where the time has gone.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

For the record

I have been fascinated with biology since I first studied it in high school. I'm sure my vast array of cultural pooling that went into forming me has a part in this. Likewise I'm fascinated by cultures and our little quirks. For example, in North America, if people were given a picture of my family, the first thing they would notice about me is that I have my mother's coloring, so they would say I look like my mom. In Africa and Jamaica, where darker skin tones are the norm, they are more in tune with facial features and may say I favor my dad. In Benin, West Africa, I was once mistaken for a short, blond haired, blue eyed friend of mine. I could not imagine how this could happen, but it did!

I had a weird thing happen to me as an adult. I was looking behind my ear for some long forgotten reason. It was pretty hard to do and required a couple of mirrors, but when I finally saw the back of my ear, I was shocked to find it had a freckle. I ran to my dad in the other room to tell him of my discovery and he knew I had a freckle behind my ear and that it had always been there. I'm not sure why this admittance affected me like it did, but I was mortified that I'd had this freckle on my body my entire life and didn't know about it!

So, I'm making it official. Ivan has a funny freckle too. Funny in that it's on the front of his ankle! What a weird place for a freckle. You can just imagine now the hunt as we have children, to see what freckles they may develop! I also have a freckle on my right palm and it looks identical to the one on Shanna, on her same hand. (She's my little sister with Big Brothers and Sisters. We discovered our matching freckles one of the first times we were together and somehow felt this was a true linking as sisters, due to our identical hands!)

Another fun discovery of family genetics was the discovery of my ear shape origin. I have pointy ears. Some nicknamed me Spock in elementary school because of it. I spent years trying to find out where my ears came from. They were unlike my siblings, my mom and dad or either of their parents. I looked through family pictures, never finding my ears. Then one day, I visited my great aunt in North Dakota and found my ear on a man in a black and white photo hanging on her wall. I ran to her asking her who the man was. He was my dad's, mom's, dad. My great-grandfather. His pointy ear shape skipped past his daughter and her son to hit me! Wow! Amazing isn't it? OK, maybe you don't think so, but I do.

Do you have any discoveries about the providence of your body's uniqueness? We have determined so far that Ivan definitely pools from a more vast source than we can imagine. At first he looked like my mom, then sometimes he looks to me like Brian's mom. Do you see any features in him from someone in particular?

Monday, March 20, 2006

little cute stuff

Ivan has brought so much love, laughter and fun into our home and world. It's amazing to watch him grow and learn and hillarious to see him picking up so many behaviors like the hand on the hip pose. Where did that come from? Children are so giving and it opens us all up to love and friendliness. Everywhere we go, he waves or says "hi" to people or more often than not, people first say "hi" to him. Sometimes he acts shy and other times he lights up with a smile or responds back. Why aren't we like this normally? Are we too cool? Too embarassed? Annoyed by adults who strike up conversations, but open with kids? I guess kids are not threatening. They accept us as we are and are receptive to about everything we do in love. I am thrilled as I watch how my son can walk into a room or place and make the atmosphere warmer by ten degrees just by his presence. People start talking, interacting, sharing, just because he is there. Then I get to join in. All because of a child's just being there. They are small and vulnerable, but perhaps the most effective section of humanity at changing our demeanor, turning frowns to smiles, bringing out joyful greetings and comments... and all this just by showing up! There is really a very powerful presence in these seemingly "incapable" little beings. Ivan can't talk, or take care of his daily needs. He can't discuss or explain. He doesn't create much, except messes. He doesn't "accomplish" much as the world may view it, but he can do more for the elderly, the lonely, the sick, and the person who just needed someone to cheer their day than perhaps any of us!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

the Ivan funnies vol.14

Ivan's favorite neighbor! The first words out of Ivan's mouth in the morning is usually "dog". His window has a nice view of the neighbor's dog "General". We often go visit General through the fence, where Ivan also gives him kisses.

Saba also likes to watch the neighboring dog. Our peeping toms in the act!

Ivan and I went to a birthday party at a game place. He really enjoyed this game. When the frogs lit up, we had to hit them. According to our correct hits, our frog raced up the wall to beat the other one.

This picture will not make the cut for next year's hallmarkesh christmas card!

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Beauty in Granite Shoals

Here are some more pics from our visit to the Marble Falls area of Texas. We saw our first bluebonnets this year, which is the state flower of Texas. We managed to grow them once in our front bed, but our over zealous mulching and treebark smothered them and they didn't come up the next time around.

We got to play at an old playground that Brian remembered from his visits as a boy. Ivan loved the teeter-tooter, which we have already noted are non-existent in "modern" playgrounds. He found a swing just his size. I didn't dare get on it, for fear of never getting up again! Brian swung on it and his jacket swept the dirt under him. Either the ground has built itself up over the years or the engineer of this thing thought infants highly advanced and able to swing on their own, 'cause even Ivan was too big, his feet dragged on the ground.

After Brian's grandmother died, his grandfather married one of her friends, who happened to live across the street. Her name was Totsie. She worked at one time at the Farmhouse restaurant, where we ate our last meal before leaving the area, perhaps for the last time. She and Brian's granddad used to eat there a lot. People treated her like a celebrity and they had a group of friends who got together each month to celebrate whoever's birthday it was. Unfortunately time had it's toll. As the years progressed, the waitstaff changed and people no longer recognized Totsie. Then the members of the birthday club started dying off, until there was no one left to celebrate the occasions of another birthday.

I really believe that our unattachment with the elderly and more specifically our own grands is a shame on our society. So many other cultures value, honor, respect and involve those who have lived longer, but as a whole, I think we, as North Americans do a pitiful job of loving, valueing and caring for our older generations. We have many elderly who live on our street and it's sad to see that some do not have good relationships with children, or have grown bitter or don't seem to have meaning to their days. I know some are involved with their friends, but like Brian's grandparents, there is not much cross-generational relating. I think we are all missing out. What do you think we can do to change this? Especially with neighbors or family who are growing older and more separate?

Friday, March 17, 2006

We're back!

I know we went for a funeral, but we actually had a really good time. There are several reasons for this, but before I pick on the Baggetts, let me note that this is my third grandfather funeral and there was the same atmosphere with all of them. I was not close to either of my grandfathers in an emotional sense. Due to physical distance with one and psychological distance with the other (he had alzheirmer's disease). They all lived long lives. The funeral was a time to remember their lives, the good, the bad and the funny, but more importantly, the funerals brought family together, often times, long overdue reunions.

When mom's dad died, we were all drawn together over great distances. We shared in the sorrow and we heard stories never before uttered (at least in us grandkid's presence). When dad's dad passed, all the siblings were joined and relationships were rekindled. Again, stories were shared and us grandkids got to hear perspectives we never knew existed.

The same happened with Brian's grandfather's passing. We are not sure why, but once upon a time, during GG Baggett's life, a shift occured from going to and participating in family reunions to shutting people out. To me and to Brian, his family was very much an unknown mystery. We made efforts since having Ivan to go and visit GG Baggett, but old habits are hard to break and while he warmed up some to me and even more so to Ivan, he had a hard time connecting with his grandson and his grandson with him. This was Brian's first remembered reunion of sorts. He met a great uncle and aunts he has never met or has no recollections of and cousins he never really knew about. He said he's never seen so many Baggetts in his life and it was exciting to know that he was part of a bigger picture. Speaking of pictures, I thought this was funny. Look at the effect Ivan had on the shoot when he was added. So true in life, children make it messier, less orderly, but more fun, more social and inviting.

We were very pleasantly surprised to discover that GG Baggett's three remaining siblings are very open and vibrant, lavishing compliments on us and invites to go see them, which we are hoping to do. GG Baggett was part of a family with 4 siblings, 2 born earlier, then two later additions. Ironically, GG Baggett also had two children, then waited 12 years before having 2 more. We have contemplated having 4 kids too, but I don't think we'll be continuing the tradition of a big gap between the them!

We really enjoyed getting to know Brian's aunt Linda and her husband. She is Grandpa Ray's closer sibling, as they are only a year apart. We hung out with them a lot. Brian has fond memories of getting together with his aunt's family growing up and felt that this time opened a door for greater involvement with each other.

Maybe funerals help us realize that we can't take each other for granted, that life is fleeting and time can not be retrieved. We also feel as though a cloud of reservation and restrainment was lifted with GG Baggett's passing, allowing for freer relations perhaps. We are extremely excited over the great privilege and honor the siblings gave Brian of documenting the family in photos on the web. They generously handed over a big box of old pictures which is what Brian loves (he even looks at old pictures in antique shops of people he doesn't know). He's always loved pictures, picture taking and history, and he now has on loan a treasure trove to display for the family. We feel this will bring us even closer to the family and help link each of them with each other. One of the oldest pictures is over 100 years old and features Brian's great grandmother as a baby with her mom in the background!!

The Marble Falls area of Texas is also very beautiful, giving us much needed respite from our drier Abilene. It is a retirement community huddled around a series of lakes. There were flowers blooming, green yards and quaint places as well as good restaurants.

So, how many hands does it take to hold a toddler during a funeral? It's a good thing for Ivan that our society excuses toddler behavior like: running on gravestones, shaking the funeral tent, running wild over graves and shouting "weeeee" down the roller-coaster like hills on the way to burry his great grandfather.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Of life and death...

We just found out that great grandpa Baggett passed away. We've been to tons of funerals, the territory goes with what we do, but this is our first family funeral. Our sympathy goes to the Baggetts, may they have peace and remember the good in Great grandpa's life. We'd been able to visit G.G. Baggett several times since Ivan's birth and although he was not a very warm or inviting man, you could tell that seeing Ivan brought some measure of joy to his life. Kids seem to do that, especially when they are little. I've seen reserved people wave and smile, comment or do goofy things to crack a smile from Ivan. It's beautiful.

Brian was not very close to his grandpa and I wasn't very close to either of mine (while Grandpa MacLeod lived with us some 15 years, he had alzheimers so the connections were not based so much on family ties and sharing memories). But I can tell that Ivan's grandparents are forging a new path. They are much more involved and demonstrate their love in both meaningful and elaborate ways, including time consuming and costly trips here. It means so much to us for our parents to lavish so much love on our precious child and to know that he will have positive and enriching relationships with them all his life. So thank you to all of Ivan's grandparents for your investment in his and our lives.

GG. Baggett had a rough life in many ways. He didn't get to experience the birth of his first son (Brian's dad) as he was fighting in WWII. Then he came back home after that trauma to the responsibility of father, husband, provider... It's no wonder he had a hard time connecting. Plus I am sure he was just doing what he knew from his parents. Times have changed. I know some of the stories from my grandparents generation are heartwarming and others tragic, with the missed opportunities. But whatever their involvement, we do have to be grateful for the lives they lived. We would not be here if it were not for them. A part of GG Baggett lives on in Grandpa Ray, Brian, and Ivan and for that we will always be thankful.

boy or girl, blue or pink, dog or cat?

We have such awesome friends and family. We really haven't bought any clothes for Ivan. He's been given clothing gifts from all over and it has been so wonderful. Recently, I was even given some clothes for our little girl who is still several months away from her grand debut! As I was looking through them and sorting them by size, I made a most hillarious discovery. In North America, we pretty much see blue as a boy color and pink as a girl color, at least for babies, although pink has become very trendy of late for boys. Little did I know that dogs is an unofficial boy theme and cats are for girls. Several of the outfits in pink or purple sported cats and none of Ivan's do. He probably has a dozen outfits with dogs on them though. Other themes I noticed include:

For boys: trains, cars, construction, sports, dogs, dinosaurs, "boy characters" like spiderman, the hulk and even snoopy...

For girls: butterflies, cats, flowers, bears, hearts, "girl characters" like the power puff girls, barbie, princess...

It's just funny to me the distinctions we make. I was going to give an example by adding a pic of Ivan and Myka and as I looked back, there is one from 3 posts ago and almost every other pic we have! I have an African friend who was trying to buy clothes for her son and daughter. She picked out pink running shoes for the boy and green yoda star wars shoes for her girl. I had to tell her they wouldn't work. I think the Africans are more free in a way. In some villages, everyone just wears a wrap around their waist and the kids go in diapers or underwear. The prints are the same for both sexes, crazy, wild and full of color! Of course, in the cities and more wealthy African countries, more western wear is the norm.

So, what is your prefered clothing style? Do you like to dress up? Do you fit the North American color and theme expectations?

Thursday, March 09, 2006

the Ivan funnies vol.13

If you have any good ideas for a new title for this section, feel free to share it. I have realized that shortly we will have another little, funny creature of beauty, grace and buffoonery to share pics of.

Here, Ivan is wrapped up in part of the playpen. He can barely stand in it and looses his balance so that I have to catch him. He thought it was pretty funny. He also loves riding in the computer chair. I have to spin it for what seems forever and he laughs and laughs, which encourages me to keep it going all the more. Quite convincing are also his screams when I stop. Lately I have been playing peek-a-boo through the arms as I spin him and he laughs so hard I thought he'd pee his pants, actually, he probably did!

On another note, it appears we have a feline toy thief. Here she is caught in the midst of the evidence. So when Ivan says "the cat did it", we will know that he's telling the truth ;) ha, ha!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

a movie date

I got a movie from the library on the Serengeti. We watched it in Spanish. Ivan loved all the animals and called them all dogs. It's funny as he learns the sounds of all these animals that he rarely or never sees. He does sounds for dogs, cats (that's a given) and horses so far. Out of all the things he could learn, it does seem weird to me... Wouldn't numbers, colors or other vocabulary be more useful? But his interest is animals and he wants to know their sounds, so that is what we practice! I guess if a color made a sound, had personality and even animation, it would be far more interesting to him. In fact, he plays a game on the fisher price web site where shapes in various colors bounce, slide, divide and multiply and make sounds- he gets all excited and dances to the game cheerily pounding on the keys to make them continue their merry movements.

I guess this is what I'd look like with twins! More power to mother's of twins, I don't know how they do it! Brian thought it would be cool to have twins, but I can't imagine. I know there are precious things about twins, but I like having them one at a time! We saw supernanny the other night. The mother age 33 had out of control kids, a 7 year old girl, twin boys age 5, and twin boys age 4, plus she was going to school. It was insane. I can see where things could quickly get out of hand with multiples. I didn't realize how long and how much effort it takes to teach things like picking up after himself or potty training. Let me tell you, I'll be happy when Ivan is independantly successful in the toilet arena, but changing that diaper is WAY easier and faster than teaching him this new and exciting world of the big boy potty. It's a good thing that the joys of seeing my child triumph balances out and even eclipses the effort required, so that I am as determined to see success as much as he is determined to unroll the toilet paper before I catch him!