Friday, December 25, 2009

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Facebook updates

For earlier posts click here

June 1
Samantha is looking for the X

June 5
Samantha is looking for the number to call in sick

June 15
Samantha is wondering why the dog smells so bad...?

June 19
Samantha is hanging out with newly 11-month-old babies

June 20
Samantha is a fan of crib toys

June 22
Samantha is nothing ends a relaxing bath faster than a fresh spider corpse

June 27
Samantha is alone and thumping (first time boys out with grandparents)

July 14
Samantha is listening to Blues Fest through the baby monitor

July 18
Samantha is getting ready for Max & Vanh's first birthday tomorrow

July 19
Samantha is Happy Birthday Van-bug! Happy Birthday Max-bird!

July 20
Samantha is thankful for the chance to celebrate her children's birthday

July 21
Samantha would like all mommies to know: swim-diapers are machine washable

August 4
Samantha is looking for company for the park

August 16
Samantha had a great time at Mike's cottage, going back Wednesday and this weekend!

Samantha is waterpark tomorrow, 9am, be there or be suffocatingly hot once again

August 19
Samantha is babies 13 months today, ooh lucky month

August 26
Samantha is wondering what is the best way to deal with a poop-in-the-bath situation

September 2
Samantha has the cutest twin boys in the world. It's not boasting I had nothing to do with it.

September 8
Samantha is wasp stings are itchy but not that painful

September 16
Samantha is wondering what the going rate for babysitters is? Thinking it is no longer a dollar an hour... two after midnight...

September 21
Samantha's freaky 14-month old child has 16 teeth!

Samantha's other child is too busy WALKING to grow teeth... yes, Vanh took his first steps. Why do I feel this sense of impending doom?

September 22
Samantha is drunk with car power

October 1
Samantha can't believe the boys missed curfew AGAIN. Oh well, at least they called this time.

October 2
Samantha got the boys' lanterns for Tết Trung Thu tomorrow!

October 5
Samantha loves loves LOVES her boys but is still hoping they nap until five.

October 13
Samantha is thankful for the used toys left on our front porch but needing the batteries for them to appear as well

October 14
Samantha loves playgroup. Sigh.

October 16
Samantha :twin hurricanes leave chaotic plastic rainbows

October 19

October 25
Samantha is not taking her children to a restaurant again until they're 30

October 28
Samantha is finished putting back the garbage that was dumped out by baby #1 when she had to undo the childproofing to get at the cleaning supplies to deal with the coffee pulled off the table by baby #2 while she was changing the 5th diaper of the hour on baby #1 and beginning to wonder if someone snuck a third baby in here?

Samantha :The adjective you are looking for could be birth, biological, first, or Vietnamese. Please don't ask about my children's real mother. I am neither fake nor imaginary.

October 30
Samantha is excited about her first time Trick-or-Treating as a parent

November 1
Samantha wishes the boys would catch on to daylight savings time as fast as they got the idea of Trick-or-treating

November 10
Samantha is officially the mother of toddlers

November 11
Samantha is remembering

November 19
Samantha is celebrating the boys' one-and-a-third birthday today!

November 23
Samantha is TGIM

November 28
Samantha is happy to announce we may have 2 more boys around here soon (for daycare)

November 30
Samantha is thinking WELCOME Molly!

December 3
Samantha is back from (unsuccessful) stroller shopping

December 4
Samantha is hmm quiet playgroup today

December 5
Samantha is listening to her kids meow and hoping they learn some human words soon

December 8
Samantha :Just because the marker says "washable" does not mean it washes off of furniture, paint, plastic, wood floors, or skin. Or teeth.

December 9
Samantha :hello Mr. Snow!

December 10
Samantha is wondering how she raised a child who thinks goldfish crackers and marshmallows are a viable breakfast option.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Monday, December 7, 2009

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Christmas is coming

Getting ready for a party at Daddy's work

Making new friends at the party

Playing with a new toy from Santa

Click here for more

Santa Claus parade

Max had his first taste of candy cane

By the way, that is NOT Max's pink mitten. (These are a friend's photos that I "borrowed" because we forgot our camera.) Max in fact REFUSED to wear his mittens and his hands were still cold when he went to bed.

(Interestingly, he chose to wear them this morning for an hour of inside playtime. With sleepers, sunglasses, and his Santa hat.)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Big boys drink milk

Something to remember: Just mixed the last little bit of formula...

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Snow update

It snowed again during morning playtime - big fluffy floaty flakes the boys could clearly see through the full-glass door. I couldn't find the camera in time to get a photo of their reaction to their first sight of snow but it wouldn't have been as good as the image in my head anyway. Just wait until they find out sometimes it stays around!

Monday, November 30, 2009


It snowed this morning - the stay on the ground long enough to see it kind of snow - for the first time this fall. I can still see some on the north side of the street. I don't think there will be any left by the time nap is over, but you never know.

The boys have never really seen snow. It was snowy the day we came from Vietnam, March 4, but we arrived after dark and they were way too busy with things like their first experience of car seats after their first (26 hours of) plane travel to notice something else new. By the time we took them out in their strollers later that month there was no more snow. They wore their snowsuits once, for a brief flurry in early April, but again we weren't actually outside while it was falling and it melted right away.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Merry Christmas!

This is going to be one of our Christmas cards. IF we get to them this year. If not - MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Something to remember: Can follow directions, specifically "Get your other boot" and "Give your brother a push".

Saturday, November 28, 2009


Something to remember: We have 4 bottles for the boys; 2 blue, a green, and a purple. So we know who drank how much if they get mixed up, we've always given Vanh the blue ones and Max the purple or green. Today I realized that they know whose is whose. If I offer the wrong colour, they will move it out of the way to get to the right one.

Friday, November 27, 2009


What possessed me to do a post every day in November, just because it is National Blog Posting Month in the US? I'm Canadian.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Hoodies & socks

I didn't understand all the hoodies and socks the boys received as gifts but now that we've been through an Ottawa spring and fall I totally get it.

Something to remember: Saw the first sign of that "wanting to please" stuff we've heard so much about. We've been trying to get the boys into winter boots, which seem to terrify Vanh for some reason. Max was braver (maybe his are more comfortable) and started walking in them right away, to much excited praise from Mommy and Daddy. The next thing we knew Vanh was racing to get his boots too.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Bread Festival

We went to a multicultural Bread Festival at my school today. The boys ate lots as usual and had fun in the gym.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Monday, November 23, 2009

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Picture with Santa

Here are the photos you've all been waiting for - the boys'
First Pictures With Santa Claus:

You may be wondering - where is Santa? And where are the babies?

I wasn't there but apparently they refused to cooperate even long enough to get one of these. But they got to keep the candy canes.

Now if we could just decide which one to use on the Christmas card...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Friday, November 20, 2009

For the love of... Please comment!

... well, my husband actually. He was concerned to see the string of zeros in the comments sections this month, and wondered if it wasn't disheartening to keep posting when no-one was listening. I explained that thanks to my handy widgit I know that you are checking me out, on average at least one person an hour, every day. So I know that I am talking to someone.

But he's right - those 0s are depressing. It's time to type us a few words, even if it's just a quick "Happy 1 1/3 Birthday!" that we can add to the boys' scrapbooks. They won't have the widgit to see that you were there.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Happy One-and-a-third Birthday!

Here we are in our brand new matching 18-month hoodies and 6-month pants.

Can you tell who is who?

How about now?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

No Twin Clothes

Like most parents of twins and all parents of adopted twins, we did our homework. We know that years of careful research and statistical analysis has shown that it is better for development to separate identity through different clothing and dissimilar names.

So why do so many people still ask why they aren't dressed alike? Most people assume they are boy and girl, even if they are both in the most stereotypical blue/ brown/ car & truck encrusted boy clothes I can find. One woman got quite angry with me ("They're twins? Why aren't they dressed the same?"), like I was deliberately trying to trick her or something

Today I decided to dress them identically, just for fun, and realized that unless I want them running around preschool in their sleepers they have no matching outfits to wear for this time of year. So I'm off to shop for twin clothes!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Fire drill

The boys had their first fire drill at playgroup today!

Okay, I cheated a little bit. They were both outside playing when the bell went. Vanh was even waiting over by the fence in the "line-up" spot where I had strategically put his favourite toy. But Max got to be scooped up and hurried over when the alarm sounded!

Well, not right away - it was a little muted outside and at first we thought the sound was somebody's watch. But we did make it over, and we played, I mean waited quietly, until the all-clear sounded. It was neat to be in the line-up with the kindergarten class - what will eventually be the boys' kindergarten class.

Monday, November 16, 2009


40% off until November 30

Beware of time sucking vortex...

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Daddy Day Care

We have decided to expand our family by offering childcare to (a maximum of) two more toddlers. So exciting! Hopefully the wait won't be as long this time...

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Friday, November 13, 2009

A Vanh by any other name...

I was gazing at the photos below and expressed to Woody how looking at them brought back those extreme feelings of joy and bliss from the first few days after the referral. "We weren't joy and bliss those first few days," he replied. "We were too busy arguing over their names."


But he's right. When asked how we first felt when we found out there were two, I have to confess we didn't immediately think about twice the joy, twice the work, twice the costs, twice the love... We were too focused on that second name.

You see, we'd had our children's names picked for years. Max for a boy; Veronica Sue for a girl. Who plans for twins?

Our boys' Vietnamese names are Em and Anh, so obviously Em was Max. Woody got the news hours before me, and by the time I got home he was committed to Wolfgang for Anh. (He figured it was his right to choose the second name, as Max is my Dad's name.) I ignored him (Wolfgang? As if) and chose Victor as the second name.
Max & Victor - I still love those names. Unfortunately no-one else did, in particular Woody.

In fact, my dear sweet husband, who lets me get my way with 99% of everything, slammed down his size 13 on this one. He insisted that he should be able to chose the name. I countered with the offer of "As long as it's not Wolfgang", which seemed reasonable to me, I mean there are what, 8 zillion other names out there?

We liked liked the way "Em(M) & Max" went together and played around with something similar for Anh. We considered Alexander and Anakin... but Woody was stuck on Wolfgang, and I have to confess I still wanted Victor... We somehow came to the agreement that the name should start with a V, and decided to leave it there for the night.

Meanwhile, we had made another startling discovery about the name we thought we had already agreed upon years ago. I firmly believe that you should give your kids the name you plan to call them, and thought Max should be just that, Max. Woody just as firmly believes that Max is not a real name, but a nickname for something longer - just like my dad's name. Another - let's call it a discussion - ensued. We tried on a bunch of Max names but the only one I liked was Maximilian, which didn't seem any fairer a name to give an innocent baby than Wolfgang.

We did agree that the boys' Vietnamese names would be their middle names. So, by bedtime the second day, we had Max(something) Em Oord and V(something) Anh Oord. I was re-naming some of their photo files and typed MAXEM and VANH. Then I ran downstairs and said, "I think we have their names." Woody eyed me suspiciously but agreed as soon as he saw them.

So now we can finally get to the joy, the wonder, the celebrations... Not so fast. If you've been paying attention you will realize that the boys were now without middle names, as their Vietnamese names were now part of their first names. And so I got to experience another commandment from my husband's Philosophy of Child Naming: Thou shalt not give thy child a last name as a first or middle name. I wanted Maxem Haines Oord but had to compromise with Mom's maiden name instead, because "at least it could be a first name". The final details you already know, from this post.

So now you know why our children have one Vietnamese name and one not!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Exactly one year ago...

... we saw these photos for the first time.

We had been expecting a referral a year earlier, but at the time were not expecting one until spring at the earliest (typical adoption time-line).

Our agency had sent us an e-mail message from Vietnam a few days earlier, but it never made it. They phoned to ask us to please make up our mind whether or not we wanted these twins as they would need to find another family if not. My husband was home for that conversation but I didn't find out until I got home from work a few hours later - by then he had already picked the names (Max and Wolfgang). We accepted the referral immediately at which point we were sent photos. We phoned our families before looking at the photos... I remember waiting and waiting for Woody to get off the phone so we could open the files together! I've never been so happy in my life.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


"They shall not grow old as we who are left grow old. Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember them."

A year ago today my Grade 3 class sang Let It Be at the Remembrance Day assembly.

A year ago tomorrow, we found out we were to be the parents of the most beautiful baby boys we had ever seen.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Monday, November 9, 2009

A photo essay

Nothing to see here Daddy

Max? Haven't seen him...

...nothing back there but the garbage bin


haha hee hee

I'm gonna get you...

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Happy November!

Thank you to the little boy who gave us this table:

We really like it!