Starting The Baby Food Factory

The twins are 4 months old and it’s time to start thinking about solid food. With the older boy I waited until he was 6 months old but this time we’re ready earlier.

Stage 1 baby food is soft cooked and thinly puréed. This food is also lowest on the allergy scale and should be those veggies that are easiest digested by tiny tummies. You should start by introducing single ingredient at a time and 4 days apart with introducing new ingredients. (1)

This time I have started by making sweet potato and carrot purées. The babies will start tasting with such small amounts that I froze these self made purées as ice cubes. This way it’s easy to take one cube at a time and later I can mix and match different flavors.

Our girl is definitely ready for the purées. She seems excited to see the spoon and opens her mouth nicely. She doesn’t seem to get any stomach problems and is as happy as a baby can be.

Our boy on the other hand has always had problems with eating and he has had quite much stomach problems. I’m not sure if trying some solids has made it worse or not but with him I’ll take it slower. Trying even smaller amounts first and introducing new ingredients slower.

Next I think that I’ll try avocado (not frozen obviously!). Then maybe some fruit.. plum? I’m glad the summer is ahead and we have lots of fresh veggies available and even more to come. 🙂

Please share your tips and thoughts. 🙂

Have a nice week end!

Mannamaria

Oh Summer Let Me Hug You

Today it was 25 Celsius first time this year. We spent all day outside with the children. I hope that the weather stays like this for a long time but in case it doesn’t we wanted to make the most of it.

First time this year:

  • the boy wore a cap instead of a beanie,
  • he used his new summer shoes,
  • he didn’t have to wear an overall at the playground,
  • he got to water paint (do you do this? He loves it! Great recommendation),
  • he got to play other water games outdoors,
  • the twins were out on a blanket,
  • I had a problem of what the twins should wear so that it’s not too hot for them in the pram,
  • I had my morning coffee outside at the terrace,
  • It’s almost 10 p.m and the sun is still shining and I’m writing this post outside.

And the tulips finally blossom!

I would have had a lot of cleaning up and cooking to do inside but I decided to let that housework wait and spend the day outside instead. The day included also ice cream, lunch at the terrace and a nanny who gave me an opportunity to cross over at least something from my to do list.

More days like this one please! 🙂

Mannamaria

Summer Holiday Planning

I’m currently using lots of time doing summer holiday planning. With small babies and the boy it’s not that simple to find the perfect solution for all. To travel abroad or stay in homeland? Stay at home? Summer cottage? Hotel? Here are my current thoughts.

Travel abroad
I love travelling and there are so many places I’d like to go to.
This option has the positive side of
– finding new travel destinations,
– creating great memories for the older boy,
– relaxing is easier when you are really out of your ordinary life,
– better chance of good weather than at home.

On the negative side:
– it is expensive,
– travelling by plane with baby twins and a 3 year old sounds stressful to me,
– the twins wake up at night no matter where we are,
– they won’t remember it anyway.

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Travel in homeland
I have traveled quite much also inside the country and this country surprises me positively every now and then.
On the positive side:
– it’s cheaper,
– you can pack everything in a car so moving around is easier,
– there are lots of great family destinations like the Moomin world where we haven’t been to yet,
– we could visit friends and family around the country and spend some time in our summer cottage.

On the negative side:
– the new experiences would be limited,
– it’s not that easy to get to the holiday mood,
– we are a family of five so not all our friends could host us which means hotel nights which means spending more money (though I also love staying in hotels and especially their breakfasts :D)
– This is a big country and our family and summer cottage are far away. Driving for 500 km in a day with kids doesn’t sound like a lot of fun.

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Stay at home
There would be so much to do here at home!
– we could finally do something from the to do -list,
– that would lower my stress level
– I love Helsinki and we could do some summer activities here like go to the beach, zoo or amusement park,
– we have our friends close and maybe for once we’d have time to see them,
– this option doesn’t cost much! 🙂

On the negative side:
– Does it feel like a holiday if you don’t go anywhere?

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Combination
One thing we have thought of is travelling to Estonia or Latvia. This way we didn’t have to use the plane, we could drive. Those countries are close. It’s not very expensive to go there and we’d still be going abroad and that would hopefully give me the sense of holiday.

I love this part of the holiday! Planning and comparing all the possibilities. Summer is still ahead and everything seems possible.

If I was jealous to some people it would be those living in the central Europe since they can travel to numerous destinations by car. That would make life so much easier when you have small children.

Do you like planning? What kind of summer holiday plans you have?

Mannamaria

Mother’s Day Here And There

This is a post I have struggled with the past days. Written, rewritten and rewritten it. I had decided to send some photo to the weekly photo challenge and when I found these photos and couldn’t just pass them. They are from our trip to Gambia a couple of years ago. This post is not about a reflecting surface as the challenge suggested. It’s more about reflecting my motherhood and relationship with children, inspired by that challenge. I hope it’s ok.

First time writing this post I started by wondering what kind of Mother’s Day they had. Did they have cake and flowers as we did? Do they have a family to celebrate it with? But I realized I know nothing about their families.

I went on to ponder how I did absolutely nothing to be born in a country were I could give birth to my children in a safe and modern hospital instead of that one below. How it was pure luck that I can give my children a chance to live their childhood in a safe the way that we want and provide them a good education. Those kids in the last picture live on the streets and do whatever they can to survive. They did absolutely nothing to deserve that. How I wish I could save them all but I can’t. 

How the school kids seem so happy. With education their future seems bright. I wish they have the opportunity to finish school and get professions. And I wish the kids from the last picture could find a way to attend to a school. 

I wrote and rewrote and rewrote. Then I thought what they would say if a mother of some of the kids in the picture saw my text. I thought of them saying “girl, you know nothing about our lives, families or hopes for the future”. And that’s quite correct, I don’t. 

So I deleted my texts and without analyzing further the only thing I know for sure is that everyone deserves a good healthcare and education. These kids and everyone else. That’s my wish for them.

Other than that I hope they had a good Mother’s Day full of love and laughter and the kind of future they wish for themselves.

Mannamaria

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Some days it’s hard to stay positive

When looking out of the window you see this


Or this


when it’s mid-May. Everyone is talking about the weather. Even the meteorologist burst out laughing when talking about the weather (clip with English subtitles). These pictures are from earlier this week.

The only person I know who is not horrified by this weather is my son. That snowy day I went to pick him up from daycare and told him we couldn’t go to the playground. He looked at me with puzzled face and asked “why?”. I told him that it’s cold and we have to go home. He asked if there are no toys at the playground and I said yes there is but there are no children. That puzzled face asked me again “why?”.

I wish I could be more like him. Not whining about something I can’t change but taking it as it is and making the most of it. Dressing up appropriately and going to the playground.

Luckily the sun is shining again and it’s getting warmer but this weather whining is something I fell too often to. I have to do something about it.

Do you complain about things you can’t change? Does it bother you?

Mannamaria

Hi there

Here is a little introduction to myself and this blog. 🙂

I started this blog in January when I had too much time. I had been on sickness leave from work for a month and being on third trimester on my twin pregnancy there was not much to do. Or actually there would have been plenty to do but I was ordered to stay in bed so I couldn’t. And to be honest with my huge belly I could hardly get my socks on let alone do something more active.

I thought this would be a perfect way to spend my days. This was something I could do while resting. But after about a week from my first post the twins decided to arrive. After that I’ve had my hands full but I decided to continue blogging anyway.

At first I thought that this blog would be more about my children. Twins and the big brother. What they are doing, wearing and eating. But quite soon I realized that I don’t want to share too much of them. I don’t want to share pictures of their faces for example. So it’s becoming a blog where I share my thoughts and perspective on parenting and life in general. Of course my children will be a big part of it since I’m currently a stay-at-home mom. I also want to share our everyday life. I hope it’s interesting to you but I also want to document this baby year for myself. Because of my heavy fatigue I don’t think that I’ll remember much of it later.

I have different goals I wish to achieve with this blog. Since I’m a true list person I made a list of them:

  • Improve my writing skills. When I was a child I wrote a lot. I kept a journal regularly and had pen pals. I loved writing. But at latest in university I had so many assignments to write I didn’t want use my spare time writing so I stopped. And after uni I didn’t get back to it. But here we go.
  • Improve my English. It’s hard to maintain or improve your language skills if you don’t use the language. That’s one of the reasons for writing in English.
  • Be part of an international blogging community. That’s another reason why I write in English. I love to learn about different cultures and habits. But I also find it interesting how people around the world are the same. Their houses or clothing or whatever can be different but if you ask them for example to tell about their families they do it in an exact same way. It’s kinda intriguing.
  • Document this baby year. I told you why up there.
  • Maybe even find some new friends.

Couple of words about me..

As you know I’m a mother for twin babies and a three years old boy. We live in Helsinki suburbs. We also have a cat called Moona. I work in a publishing company with legal information matters but will stay at home with the kids for at least a year now.

I don’t know what else to tell you about me so maybe some random facts?

  • I’m left handed
  • Before buying this house I had always lived in apartments.
  • I have studied latin for four years.
  • I have traveled quite much but never been to Asia.
  • I’ve had a phobia of needles.
  • I would like to learn French.

Would you like to tell me something about yourself? I’d love to hear from you. 🙂

Mannamaria

 

To anyone expecting twins

Or to anyone meeting someone who is expecting twins.

I wanted to make a list of things I wish someone had told me when I was expecting my twins. It got too long so I split it in half. 

Here is the first part of it. I hope you like it!

1. People will ask you very intimate questions. Prepare to have an answer at least to the following: Were they conceived the natural way or via infertility treatment? Did you have a normal labour or c-section? Do you have twins in your family? That is not a very intimate question as long as the answer is yes. Answering no causes a bunch of new questions. And a bonus question: Are they identical? I have a girl and a boy.

2. It’s not a good idea to buy them similar clothes. I have a boy and girl. I didn’t think I would have trouble remembering who I last fed or changed the diaper to. But when you are tired and keep feeding and changing their diapers all the time you do forget it. As annoying as it is, it helps if you have color coded them. The older boy started to call them “the blue baby” and “the red baby” when I stopped using similar clothes on them. This way I have a better chance remembering if it was the blue baby or the red baby I last fed.

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3. Give a real chance to the things you think are important. Things are probably not going to go as you planned anyway but pick the ones you wish to work and make your best effort at them. For example, if you would like to breastfeed them, buy a good breastfeeding pillow and a pump while you are still pregnant. When I was pregnant I thought “we’ll see how it goes. I don’t want to worry about it.”.

But by thinking like that I never learnt for example to breastfeed them at the same time. Having a proper pillow would have helped a lot but after a while I started to think that there is no point in buying an expensive pillow now when I don’t know if it would work out anyway. And now I feel bummed because I don’t think I gave it a proper chance.

4. Try to get some regular help. Having a nanny once or twice a week has been a real blessing. It feels easier to stay up at night with them when you know that in a couple of days the nanny will come and let you sleep for couple of hours during the day. Or you can clean the house while she’s there. Take care of the things that you never have time to do. Have a lunch date with your husband. Update your blog. Get a reminder that there is still other life than the babies. Or just get some rest.

5. Don’t listen to other people too much. People will give you many advice concerning how to raise twins. Of course you are the only one who knows what works for your family. For example, you say that you are tired and get a response “you should keep them in the same sleep cycle and wake the other one up to eat at the same time with the other one”. They mean well but it can be hurtful if you have tried it and million other things but still feel tired.

This is it for now! Do you have other tips, questions or comments?

Have a lovely day!

Mannamaria