Monday, October 31, 2011

Our Happy Little Helpers...


watching the planes take off from National airport at Gravelly Point

We are entering the 20th month of Astral and Defy’s lives full speed ahead (in only 3 days)! Our shining twin stars are becoming quite the little helpers. They follow direction so well (when they want to) and really enjoy helping with little chores around the house. They love stuffing the laundry into the washing machine or drawers, sweeping, loading the dishwasher, wiping things down with a cloth and picking up their toys/books. We sing them a little clean up song for motivation, which they're totally in to. They often put all their books back on the shelf and all their toys where they belong only to throw them all back on the floor upon completion. They seem to get more joy out of destroying a room than cleaning it and I’m sure that will continue for some time...

Astral and Defy do occasionally fight over a book or toy but mostly they cooperate with one another and help each other out. If one guy has a toy or book he wants to make sure the other one has a toy or book too. If one of them is upset then the other one will often try to make him laugh. I mentioned in the last post that they were sitting on booster seats at the dining room table and that they could already unlatch themselves and get down. Now when one gets down he will unlatch the other guy so that he can "escape" too! Talk about brotherly love...

Astral Defiance
Defy Aster

Observing their evolution into little people is just indescribable. I could call it amazing, astonishing, remarkable, but none of those words do it justice. Watching their development is a lesson in humanity and reinforces our choice to live a vegan life and share this vegan life with them. Human children are so compassionate, empathetic, and seem to naturally love animals. Most parents nurture that love even as they set a piece of nonhuman animal flesh or a cup of stolen mammary secretions on their children’s highchair trays, beginning their lives as unwitting animal exploiters. Astral and Defy really do love animals. They absolutely adore our companions Star and Sunny, although we are not sure the feeling is always mutual. They also love all the animals and insects they see in nature and are so interested yet gentle when they come across them. They thoroughly enjoy matching animal noises to pictures of animals in their favorite books. I just can’t imagine them making cute piggy noises then letting them shove “hot dogs” down their throats at lunchtime. So many people claim that it is, or would be, “hard” to raise vegan children, but to us it would be so much harder to outright lie to them and break their trust after encouraging them to “love” animals.

The fall weather has been extremely beautiful, but is quickly becoming quite cold and crisp. We had our first snow this past weekend. It wasn't much, but it marked the beginning of brisk and cold bundle-up weather. Astral and Defy are still getting used to their winter coats and aren’t quite fans yet. Virginia is so beautiful in the fall and we’ve been taking advantage of the spectacular scenery. I’m so excited for them to play in the snow this year! They are going to love it!

Great Falls

They are doing quite well with potty training and they are “going” in their potties a couple times a day and sometimes more (and sometimes less). They are still sleeping in their rooms alone for the most part. Their speech is getting clearer and they are adding more words every day. They are learning their colors and shapes and surprise us every day with what they know.

kamut and corn puffs with bananas, kiwi and raspberries

Astral and Defy’s hair is really growing in now. It’s so curly and cute; they might actually need a little taming trim soon. Astral’s hemangioma on the back of his neck is going down (involuting) a lot, which we were told would probably start to happen around 18 months. Their appetites and bodies are growing like weeds, their favorite shoes are getting too small and they are wearing 24months-2T clothing.

Astral and Defy have taken us on quite the adventure for the past 20 months. It hasn’t always been easy, but it has always been wonderful despite the lack of sleep and endless responsibilities that come with the territory of parenting twins (and parenting in general). Hopefully they will continue to have a desire to help out in life. Each day we try to ensure that they will continue to be creative, imaginative, and intelligent little people. Our lives have changed so much, but we have yet to experience anything as rewarding as being their parents. We used to be on our own time and could be completely selfish if we chose to be. We now know the true meaning of being self-less…

after nap fist bumping