August 21, 2005

Operation Free Mommy

Andrea had not seen the sky for over two weeks so we were determined to get out this weekend. Prior to having babies, getting out was nothing. We’d decide what we wanted to do, dress in the appropriate clothing, get in the car and leave.

A timeline of our Pre-babies weekend outings…

9:00 a.m.: Matthew wakes up and surfs internet or reads paper
10:00 – 10:30 a.m.: Andrea awakens and comes out to join Matthew
11:00 a.m.: Breakfast is had.
11:30 a.m.: Andrea announces she’d like to go running along the beach
12:00 p.m.: Dressed, we head out of the house.
12:30 p.m.: Arrive at beach and go running
3:00 p.m.: Return home after a leisurely run and perhaps stopping to get some lunch.

Now, things are a bit more complicated. Leaving the house is on par with planning a full-scale invasion. Supplies are garnered, contingency plans are made and mental preparation is paramount.

Our current timeline…

Andrea announces she needs to get out this weekend. Matthew whimpers and begins the tough mental preparation needed to accomplish this goal.

Andrea has not budged on her commitment to get out and see the world. Matthew offers to order more travel movies from Netflix. Andrea is undeterred.

Andrea starts to worry that Matthew is not taking her seriously. Matthew, realizing we really are going to have to leave the house with two infants, realizes that there’s no escape – Operation Free Mommy is a go. We decide we want to go to the beach and walk along the Pacific Ocean. How will we do this In strollers or in their Snugli baby packs We decide on the Snuglis. We also decide to launch the operation from a location closer to the beach in question. Matthew is dog sitting this weekend for good friends Chris and Kristie who happen to live much closer to the beach. We decide we will head there, re-assess our situation and, if all systems are go, head out from there.

Matthew returns from his morning walk of Chris and Kristie’s dog at 9:30 a.m. Preparations begin for a 2:00 p.m. departure. Preparations included:

  • Diaper bag is checked and re-checked. Since we have not traveled out of the house lately, it is noticed that the diapers in the bag are the newborn ones. The switch to the Size 1 diapers is made. Other items added include clean onesies and extra zip-loc bags.
  • Snugli’s are brought out along with a cloth sun protector that attaches to the Snugli that my brother and his wife got us.
  • We plan on being out for only one feeding and Andrea is planning on pumping at Chris and Kristie’s. I pack enough bottles for two feedings anyway. Better safe than sorry. We use the carrying cases we got from the hospital when the babies were born. I slip in the re-freezable ice and put the bottles in the pouches.
  • Infant carriers are brought out and placed on the table where we will load in the babies when the time comes.

Meanwhile, the babies are fed at 11:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. After the second feeding, they are given a quick sponge bath and put in cute, new outfits that we had better put on them soon or they will be too small in another month. They are so cute, we take a couple of pics of them as the babies are in a good mood. By this time Andrea has already pumped and we’re ready to go. It still takes another 1/2 hour to get out the door – gear packed, babies stowed away, etc. We don’t leave until 2:45 p.m.

We arrive to walk the dog at around 3:15 p.m. Matthew feeds the cats and takes Jake the dog out to while Andrea sets up shop. When I return around 4:00 p.m., Andrea is looking at me like I’m in deep trouble as the babies are screaming. It turns out they want to be fed. I break out the bottles and we feed them and change them. By the time we pack up everything it is close to 5:00 p.m. We head to the beach with only a general sense of where we want to go. We decide that a quick bite to eat near the beach and a short walk along the beach will be all we can handle. We decide on a place mainly because they have free parking. We put on our Snugli’s, pull the sleeping babies out of their infant car seats and put them in the pouches on our chest. We then proceed to the restaurant.

The babies are a big hit. I’ve seen celebrities with a lower profile than our twins. Everyone in the restaurant has an interest in the babies. Questions abound: Are they twins Two Boys Two Girls Both! How old are they

We order our food and manage to eat without spilling anything major on their heads. Towards the end of the meal, it appears the babies are getting hungry again. I head out to the car and retrieve their bottles. We feed them in the restaurants, still in their Snuglis, while finishing our fries. By the time we leave it’s about 6:30 p.m. We head to the beach where we walk for about 10 minutes, stepping past homeless people sleeping on the sidewalk. For the first time, I feel a bit protective of my babies. I hurry us past them and we end up at Cold Stone Creamery for a quick ice cream. On the way out, we are asked for forty-one cents from a guy who tells us he has 20-year old twins. I figure it’s good Karma so I give him the change in my pocket. I don’t know if it’s more than forty-one cents. He doesn’t seem to care. I can sense he feels a bond with us as we move on.

We get back to the car around 7:00 p.m. and load sleeping babies in the car. We head home and walk in the door in time to immediately feed them. After they are fed we put them to bed around 8:30 p.m. The trip must have tired them out because they didn’t fully wake up until 5:30 p.m. the next morning. That doesn’t mean we slept all that time. TheMonk woke up around 3:00 a.m. and I brought him into bed with me. Swee’Pea, however, slept all the way through. Perhaps we’re on our way to sleeping all night long.

So, after our long day yesterday Andrea and I relaxed at home today. I did manage to mow my lawn and re-caulk the shower in our bathroom. We watched a movie and played with the babies all day long. I got lots of laughs and gave lots of kisses. A good weekend.

Operation Free Mommy was a success. Let’s hope we get a few more of these in near future.

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