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Life with Twins | Meet Nicole and the Haviland Twins

“Are they twins”, “Double trouble”, “Are they identical”, and my personal favorite “better you than me”. If you’ve guessed by now the answer is, yes I have twins. Women have been birthing twins since the beginning of time, yet every time I wander into Target the kids and I turn into superstars. We’ve heard every comment imaginable, but the above are the most common. What is it about twins that just makes people go nutty? 
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I’m here to share with you the journey we’ve been on over the past year with our twins Vivian and Kipling who just turned one. Life is a crazy adventure with these two, but we couldn’t picture it any other way. 
 

Let me start off by saying life with twins is unexplainable;

The fact that my body created two lives at the same time. At one point I had three hearts inside me, (including my own) and that alone just blows my mind. Twin pregnancy comes with a lot more risks than singleton (what us Twin Mamas refer to Mamas who carry and birth one baby at a time). 

Then after pregnancy comes the high risk of premature birth leading to Neonatal Intensive Care Unit stays.

My twins were born eight weeks early; my daughter spent five weeks in the NICU, and my son spent nine weeks in. Having babies (or a baby) in the NICU is nothing you can ever prepare yourself for. Leaving the hospital without my babies was without a doubt the hardest thing I’ve ever had to go through in my life. It was dreadful waking up each day at home to their empty nursery, and then spending all day at the hospital trying to hold your babies while they have all these wires attached to them, and alarms beeping. If it wasn’t for my husband and my own Mama I don’t think I would have ever made it through those long nine weeks. But after the NICU stay is over, you get to take your little bundles of joy home and then the fun really begins.  

In the beginning I think the most important piece of advice we took from other twin parents was to get the kids on the same schedule.

That meant in the middle of the night if Viv woke up to eat, well then we were waking Kip up to eat too. My husband and I worked out a pretty good system where I would do the middle of the night shifts, and he would do the early morning shifts. But to this day the kids still eat at the same time. If you don’t keep twins on the same schedule you are going to kill yourself waking up every other hour. 
 
Eventually we talked to our pediatrician about their night time feedings and she said it was safe to wean them off. So with her approval and support we sleep trained the kids. (They were around six months old). It was an agonizing three day weekend of using the “cry it out” method, but after the third night they slept the whole night. To this day we put them to bed at 7pm and they wake up at 7am. If they wake up in the night they are able to self soothe themselves back to sleep. If they wake up earlier than 7 they usually just play in their cribs and yell to each other across the room. I completely understand that the CIO method is not for everyone, but we felt like it was the best option for us, and it worked. Everyone in the house gets enough sleep, and it allows my husband and I to have some time to spend together every night after the kids go down. 

Find your tribe; 

I think another thing that has really helped our twins thrive is the fact that we have a small army of support around our little family. My parents and my husbands parents have been instrumental in helping with the twins; anything we need they are always right there to help. My brother lives with us and is always lending a helping hand. (And let me tell you when you have two infants in the house, an extra pair of adult hands goes a long way). Our friends have provided us with advice, love, and shoulders to lean on when things didn’t go as planned. Without all the support from everyone in our lives I don’t think we would of made it. 

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Everyday with these two is an adventure because they get to experience life together. They always have a best friend right beside them. When they were a couple weeks old their favorite thing in the world to do was stare at each other and hold hands. Now that they’re getting older they love playing together, and wrestling. 
 
Sure loading two kids into a car by myself just to run to Target is tiring. Being questioned by strangers about personal details of your life, and annoying questions about twins gets old real quick. Packing for trips for two infants is also another pain in the butt. Then there are the times when they are both having meltdowns at the same time, and you have to choose who to comfort first. It’s also tough to try and not compare them developmentally; because although they are twins, they are still individuals. Having twins comes with unique challenges that families with one child, or children of different ages don’t face. But you know what? Having twins also comes with a unique set of rewards and gratification. We have double the kisses, and double the hugs. We have the joy of watching them interact and grow up right along side each other. We have the pleasure of experiencing every little milestone that children hit not once but twice. And most importantly we have learned to love more than we have ever thought was possible. 
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Life with twins is hard, its tough, it tests you, but it also makes you grow, builds you into a stronger person, and lets you open your heart to double the love
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You can follow Nicole and the lovable, stylish, and quickly growing Haviland twins on Instagram at @havilands_wifey.
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We’re honored to have been able to share Nicole’s story and we’re excited for all of the newness that’s to come on Beauty in the East! Be on the lookout for a new look, new bloggers, and most importantly – fresh new content!
We love meeting powerful women and hearing the different journey that comes with everyone’s unique experience through life and motherhood. If you’d like to share your story – email Krystal and Leigha at LYLASvlog@gmail.com to be featured as a guest blogger.
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Having Two Under Two | LYLAS Video

In less than a month we will no longer have two under two! Feels like yesterday I was laying in bed, 9 months pregnant, snuggling my 15 month old, and slightly panicking about what was in store for us as a family of four. The journey wasn’t easy but as the girls grow, and their bond forms, I am constantly reminded of how valuable these past two years have been.

Curious of some of the challenges we faced and what our two under two experience was like? Click on the video below!

 

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Worst Tinder Date Ever

Believe it or not – there was once a time when I wasn’t a baby growing, toddler caring, domesticated house wife of a woman. In fact I was actually a young, single, and ready to mingle college girl living in Tampa Florida. Like most single people during this time, I tested out the online dating world and tried Tinder. Now let me start with a disclaimer, I do NOT think online dating is bad. I have a best friend who went on ONE online date and is now happily married to that man. But of course that wouldn’t happen for me, because my life never goes that smooth (j/k, but not really).

Instead of the fairytale story my friend gets to share about her online dating experience, I have a story that could probably go down as the WORST Tinder date ever:

Okay, so I match with this man on tinder and we spark up conversation immediately. He seems funny and witty with a bit of sarcasm, which I personally like. After about two weeks of constant communication, we set up a movie date night. I know what you’re thinking, oh a “Netflix and Chill” kinda date? But no. At the actual movies, you sicko’s. Well, that’s what it was supposed to be anyways.

Fast forward to the day of the date and one hour before he’s scheduled to pick me up, he texts me saying he’s had a rough day and is just now leaving the gym. He asks if it would be super inconvenient to just stay in and watch a movie at my place. Wanting to give him the benefit of the doubt, I agree. Plus, I hadn’t even started doing my hair yet, so a messy bun and yoga pants was fine with me! But then I get another text. Saying that his gym is right by my apartment, so instead of driving all the way home, could he just shower at my place? Say what? He wants to shower in MY shower when he has never even met me? What if I was a slob with mold in my shower? What if HE is a slob and tries to use my loofa?! And why can’t he just shower at the gym? Im really not liking this. But once again, I agree.

So I hear a knock at the door and with a little bit of butterflies in my stomach (just being honest, I thought I liked this guy!) I open the door. Pause. This would be the part in a movie where everyone on the screen freezes and you only hear the thoughts of the main character. My thoughts are going something like this – First, omg why is he so short? His profile said he was 5’11’’ and yet I’m at least 2 inches taller than him standing here in my bare feet. He obviously lied about that. RED FLAG. Second, tiny hands. This mans hands are so freaking tiny they look like they belong to a small child. I’m not sure why, but RED FLAG. And thirdly, WHY DOES HE HAVE A ROLLING SUITCASE BEHIND HIM?! No lie people. A rolling freaking suitcase right behind him. Lord save me and also, RED FLAG.

After he comes in and we get past that awkward 10 minutes of meeting someone for the first time, he gets in the shower. This is probably when I should have called a friend to come bang on my apartment door about some emergency I needed to go help with – but I didn’t, cause I’m dumb. Sitting on my couch scrolling through movies we could watch, the tiny man emerges from my room in his most comfortable matching pajama set. I can’t make this stuff up people. He had on long red and black stripped flannel pants with a black shirt that had the same stripe pattern on the chest pocket. I get that we are having a night in, but your pajamas dude? (It didn’t dawn on me right then, but if he was coming from the gym and just happened to change plans to come straight to my place, why did he have a matching pajama set in his bag? Eh, I mean rolling suitcase? BRIGHT RED FLAG.) And in one of his child sized hands was a giant bag of protein powder. He walks over to my kitchen, as if he lives here or something, and plops this bag down on the counter.Side eyeing him from my couch, I watch a giant cloud of protein dust burst into the air. He laughed all nonchalantly and waved his hand in the air as if to help clear it up. Did he even attempt to clean up the layer of powder all over my countertop you ask? Ha. No.

But wait, it gets worse.

After I cleaned up the mess myself, I walked into my bathroom. Not only was his stupid rolling suitcase laying open in the middle of the floor, there was an OPENED box of condoms placed perfectly on my bathroom countertop. OH. MY. GOD. This kid can’t be serious. I mean, pulling a box of condoms out of your suitcase and putting them on display is one thing, but the box is open? This has to be a joke. And now I have an attitude. I prance my little petty self out to the kitchen and say “your stuff is all over my bathroom, can you clean it up? Oh and I see you forgot your condoms on the counter, you can put those away too.” And you know what he did? He acted OFFENDED that I would ask him to clean up his sh*t! Can you honestly believe that? This man was really getting close to appearing on an episode of Snapped as a murder victim.

I couldn’t even make it through the movie people. He tried to do the cute put your arm around the girls shoulder thing, except, he’s tiny. Remember? So I was uncomfortably forced to slouch down just so he could get his arm up and over. It had to have been less than 20 minutes in when I pulled the sick card – “I had lunch at a new spot today and am really not feeling good. I think I’m going to just call it a night.” Any normal person would pick up on that hint and just, oh I don’t know, leave right? LOL not tiny hand man. He asks if I want him to come lay down with me and rub my back? Dear god no. I would literally rather swallow glass than have to interact with you for a minute longer. But this kid just wouldn’t take a hint. I had to verbally tell him, in a slow teacher talking to a child voice, “I would like you to leave now.”

After packing his suitcase *eye roll* he makes his grand exit – matching pajamas and all. I have never slammed and dead bolted a door faster in my life. Looking back, I’m just thankful I wasn’t robbed or murdered that night. Because homeboy definitely had a few missing screws upstairs if you know what I’m saying.

Moral of the story boys and girls, some Tinder dates lead to marriages. And some Tinder dates lead to rolling suitcases, protein powders, and a new blocked number in your phone. The risk is yours.

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