19 months

I actually skipped 18 months, while there’s so much going on. Well raising twins is…busy, very busy. My days seem to go even faster now, and they require all of my attention during their waking moments, well to be fair, they now really can entertain themselves pretty well. However, at times, they can be so clingy that I have to take them in the bathroom otherwise they will scream outside the door.

Boys are cuter than ever, which is wonderful. I love this stage when they are trying very hard to talk but all that comes out is funny sound that doesn’t make any sense. They do, however, know a few Chinese words even though it’s not perfect I can understand them.  They are so much quicker now picking up new baby signs, we started the BabySign classes with Jennifer at our house and we’ve had three classes already, it’s great fun and boys know how to do drink, eat, more, bath, bubbles, light…it’s endless fun. One day, Lin was doing a sign to Michael, he didn’t know what it was and asked me, I said it’s bird, we looked outside the window and sure enough there’s one sitting on the fence! They also know the Chinese for cat and dog, which is pretty cute.  Sign language is wonderful, it gives them a chance to talk to us before they can master the language. They also still have that baby walk, which is really cute too, boy I just know I will miss how they are now in the future.

Lin and Li are both fascinated with socks, wheels, shoes and books. They also love food, especially eggs and avocados, now they dislike smoothies so I have to think of other ways to feed them vegetables. We continue to get food from the Eco farm and from the co-op we get a large variety of foods, it’s organic, pricey but very fresh. During the summer, Dana has been a great babysitter, her parents invited us over to her 20th birthday as a surprise and they all came over for dinner last weekend and enjoyed the Chinese food I made. Dana’s little sister Marla was the youth ambassador of New Zealand for 2008 Olympics so she and her parents spent a month in Beijing and loved it there. They were both very good with the boys and Michael and I were happy to have 2 nights free to have our lone time. Now Dana’s going back to school in Christchurch, and Greta is coming back, seamless transition I would say.

Lin weighs about 13.5kg (almost 30 lbs), Li’s a bit lighter although he continues to eat a lot more than Lin. I am not able to lift both of them at the same time any more, Michael just went to a chiropractor and a few of his spine disks are compressed so the doctor asked him to stop lifting both boys and minimize lifting one. He is starting adjustment today and hopefully he will be back in shape. He got me a Samsung Galaxy tablet, it was really a great idea. I can videotape, upload, share via email on one device which makes it possible to film them more, the quality is pretty good as well. For Michael, next week he will get his YikeBike he’s been dreaming about for a while, this way we can hold off and wait for the Nissan Leaf to be launched in New Zealand. Many people bike here and it’s so easy to spend a few thousand dollars on a bike so the YikeBike is actually not that expensive for what it is – environmentally friendly, foldable and very cool looking.

Boys also started their swim lessons on Jan 31st, they were shy so held onto us the whole time but we know they love the water, once the instructor left, they were happy playing in the water. Lido is a fantastic place to bring the kids, it’s huge with the outdoor water park, I am sure we will enjoy it for many years to come.

I am still breastfeeding at least 5 times a day, their nap schedule is bit confusing, at one point, they were napping 3 hours around lunch time, now they went back to morning and afternoon nap again. Today they napped at 8:30am (too early) but Li didn’t get up until 11am. Then at 5pm, they both napped for another hour. I think they do go to bed late, usually around 9pm, so Michael and I don’t have a lot of time to do what we need to do, recently we just napped with them till 10:45 or 11pm, then we get up and watch 2 episodes of Community, or a documentary.

I’ve been buying a lot of crap, but some turned out to be really nice, like the pie maker, pies are very popular snacks in New Zealand, with the pie maker I can do anything, savoy or sweet in about 15 minutes. Our coffee machine also seems to be working right finally, for $2000, it better works well! I also continue to get the goat’s milk from the American lady who runs her farm, she told me about the Tai Chi classes at the community leisure centre so I will start on Feb 13th. There’s so much to do in Palmerston North it’s amazing…for a city of 80,000 people, there’re endless shops and activities, and it’s ranked the most affordable city for housing in New Zealand, well Michael and I think the prices here are still overpriced, average at $300K. Not sure why everything is so expensive, I guess it’s because people don’t need to pay for medical expenses or insurance. We got our passports back yesterday, so we are officially residents without travel restrictions, the immigration office runs on speed of light (compared to the USCIS), we dropped off the passport last Friday and it came back to us in a week! The wages here is so low that many people moved to Australia but it’s kind of nice that way since it’s never busy on the streets. This is what we were looking for and we are really happy that we moved here.




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