July 28, 2007

Caleb broke his collar bone!

On Thursday evening, just before going inside to go to bed, Caleb fell while playing / running on the drive way. Turns out he broke his left clavicle. He's doing ok and wearing a sling. Now all we have to do is keep him from falling again for about 1 month. LOL!

Posted by johnbenj at 10:48 AM | Comments (0)

December 3, 2006

Moonrise over Henderson

We took the boys to have their picture taken with Santa Clause on Saturday morning. We expected that Jake was not going to be happy about sitting on Santa's lap and we were right. We'll have the picture in a week and will share it here.

Caleb, on the other hand, liked sitting on Santa's lap very much. He stayed for a couple more solo-photographs with Santa, and was so thoughtful about his brother crying on the sideliness, that he told Santa Clause what Jake wanted for Christmas. Way to go Caleb!!

The snow has almost all melted away now, leaving us with foggy evenings. I took this picture as the moon was rising behind the house in the early evening.

With apologies to Ansel, here is Moonrise over Henderson:

Posted by johnbenj at 3:15 PM | Comments (0)

November 26, 2006

The site is restored

Some might have noticed that this site had been "hacked" by some bored kiddies. It's taken a couple of hours to upgrade the site and reconfigure it but it doesn't look like any data was lost or deleted and now the site is back up and running.

Posted by johnbenj at 7:29 PM | Comments (0)

It's Snowing!

As you can see below it is snowing, The forecast calls for an inch or two of snow for us.

you can always see our current weather from John's weather station at


Caleb and John went in the hot tub while it was snowing!!

Posted by johnbenj at 6:18 PM | Comments (0)

September 26, 2006

New pictures and an update.

Once again a lot of time has elasped since I've updated here with pictures or words. Tonight I added 98 new pictures to the Gallery!

We're doing very well here. Healthy boys who have had a very nice summer. Our weather has been outstanding. We celebrated the 4th of July at Black Butte Ranch, located in central Oregon, with Diana's sister's family. We travelled to the Alderbrook resort on Hood Canal as a family get-away celebration of Diana's birthday.

Over labor day weekend we rented a small house at Canon beach with Dave, Julie and Quinn. We were joined by Amy and Andy, Danielle, Tony, Nick and Madeliene and almost by John Cell. It was the visit to the Pacific ocean for the boys. We had a lot of fun introducing them to a big beach and big waves. The boys had a great time playing on the beach. Check out the pictures.

The boys are talking now and they are turning into word sponges. We've changed our daycare center and the boys have responded really well so we're very relieved to have made the change.

We are enjoying living on Bainbridge Island very much. The boys are now running all-over-the-place and it's fun to see them play more complex and more independant games. They're not babies anymore! Jake loved seeing the Blue Angels at the beginning on August and wearing a Seattle Mariners shirt every day. Seriously. Every day. Caleb loves being in the water and takes after his cousin Nick Tomich. We starting swimming lessons this fall and the local pool.

We had nice visits from Serena and Steve Horn, though they came at different times. What's up with that? Diana has [almost] completed a house painting project so our walls are no longer white - yippee

Enjoy the pictures! I'll write more soon.

Love to all,
John, Diana, Caleb and Jake

Posted by johnbenj at 10:19 PM | Comments (0)

June 18, 2006

Father's Day 2006

Diana and I took Caleb and Jake to see the Mariner's play the San Fransisco Giants (and Barry Bonds). Bonds was held hittless, going 0 for 4 with three strike outs. Brilliant. The M's completed the sweep of the three game series.

Dave, Julie and Quinn met us at the game and helped corral and herd the boys. Th boys really lit up when they saw them - especially Quinn. And they love to run, seemingly without fear, in the large crowds. With huge smiles and loud giggles they tear around Safeco Field. We gave them the run of the 300 level but that hardly seems big enough.

Jake did sit on Dad's lap through 3 innings. The longest ever. The effort was aided by french fries: thanks Mom and Caleb! Though they never stopped squirming around, tt was a great to be snuggled up with Jake and Caleb watching the game.

Happy Father's Day!!

Posted by johnbenj at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

May 6, 2006

New pictures and fun news

Click here to see new pictures.

In the fun news department, Jake used a potty tonight. He and Caleb were taking a bath and Jake asked to use the potty. He sat. He pee'd. We danced and cheered and sang and clapped. He got back in the bath. It was cool.

Posted by johnbenj at 11:12 PM | Comments (0)

April 9, 2006

Boys will be boys

Baseball season has started so we got the boys dressed up and met our friends at the park. Quinn was a huge help watching the boys run all around the stadium.

You can see new pictures in the gallery

The boys have taken to jumping! Here is a picture of Caleb leaping from the sofa.

And this is Jake practicing his flying kicks!

See all the pictures in the gallery

Posted by johnbenj at 10:24 PM | Comments (0)

April 3, 2006

Welcome to Spring 2006!

Caleb and Jake are now 22 months old!! Check out all the new pictures in the Gallery


Posted by johnbenj at 10:13 PM | Comments (0)

December 12, 2005

Happy Holidays

We went to visit Santa for the boys picture this year. This is pretty much what we expected with 18-month olds. Hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

There are a lot more NEW PICTURES in the December 2005 Gallery. Check out the pictures of the boys first snow fall, walks in the park, bath time and more!

Happy holidays!


Posted by johnbenj at 11:21 PM | Comments (0)

November 19, 2005

New pictures are in the gallery

We've uploaded a number of new photographs in the Gallery. October pictures include picking pumpkins from the local patch, halloween Lobster costumes and glee from the Trick or Treat loot.

Posted by johnbenj at 10:40 PM | Comments (0)

November 12, 2005

Some great pictures our friends took

These are pictures that Julie Smart took of the boys:








Posted by johnbenj at 11:49 PM | Comments (0)

September 27, 2005

New Videos and Pictures

The boys learning to walk (August, 2005)

Windows: 5.4MB Quicktime: 1.4MB

Caleb climbs a wall (September, 2005)
Windows: 2.4MB Quicktime: : 611KB

Also check out the new pictures in the gallery:

Posted by johnbenj at 11:21 PM | Comments (0)

August 27, 2005

Jake and the bottle

Click here to see a video of Jake trying to throw a bottle away.

Jake and the bottle (2.3 Mb, .WMV)

Posted by johnbenj at 8:56 AM | Comments (0)

August 21, 2005

Been a long, long time...

Wow, how time flies. The boys are doing really well. They've been healthy and growing very fast. They are happy (most of the time) and a joy to be around. Tiring and exhausting to take care of, but a joy.

Be sure to check out the new pictures in the gallery

The big news is that Caleb and Jake are now walking! Its been about 2 weeks for Jake and maybe 3 for Caleb. They are still very wobbly and are clearly now toddlers as they choose to walk almost everywhere they go. I'll be adding some video of the boys in the next couple of days.

We have been going to a local playground with the boys lately. They really like slides and crawling/walking around the structure, watching other kids play, and of course, eating sand, rocks and dirt.

Transportation has been a theme for the last couple of months. We bought the boys small tricycles which have push/control bars attached to the back so we can push and steer the boys. They like them very much but their legs are still too short to reach the peddles on their own.

We also bought a carrier for towing the boys behind a bicycle. I have taken them for four or five rides in the last month - from around the block to 5 miles or so. There are a lot of hills on Bainbridge, and I'm not biker I used to be, so I try to stick close to home. Now that the boys walk, though, more destinations are available to us - like the beach.

We took the boys to Leschi, a Seattle neighborhood on Lake Washington, to see the Blue Angels perform. They boys didn't mind the noise and seemed to understand that something with cool airplanes was taking place. We just happened to be at the Museum of Flight at Boeing Field when the Blue Angels arrived for their week long stay.

We visited our little airplane that day and let the boys sit in the front seats. They giggled and squealed playing with the yokes.

They boys can now ride in a shopping cart at Safeway that looks like a car and has two steering wheels at the front. The boys sit side by side and it looks like they are driving the cart. They love it and the size is perfect.

Today, Diana and I took the boys to Bremerton airport to meet our friend Matt and the airplane. We put the boy's car seats in the plane and they fit perfectly. So we loaded the boys into the plane and as Matt taxied us I tried to keep the boys hearing protection on. They were very calm as we taxied so we decided to do a take-off and landing. While we were circling the field the boys looked out the windows, pointed and looked around. They didn't keep their hearing protection on, though. Matt brought the plane in for a smooth and gentle landing and we taxied back to ramp. It was a very low-key and successful introduction of flight for the boys.

We have decided to enroll the boys at a local toddler program 3 days a week. They'll most likely begin in November (they'll be 18 months then) but it may be sooner depending on their walking and listening skills. We're looking forward to getting some large blocks of free time and still spending a lot of time together with the boys. We hope they are ready for a little more day-to-day socialization, too, and will enjoy the new routine.

We've changed the nap routing for the boys and consolidated the morning and afternoon naps into one early afternoon nap just after lunch. They have been doing this for about 2 weeks now and so far it seems to be a success. They nap for 1.5 to 2.5 hours.

The boys are sleeping through the nights now, too! Diana stopped breast feeding at the end of 12 months and it wasn't long until the boys would have full nights of sleep. We're putting them to b/t 6 and 7 pm and they sleep till 6:30 or 7 am.

Our dog Casey, though, is not so good. She is almost 16 years old and suffering from kidney disease and high-blood pressure. She had a period during the middle of June when she was admitted for three nights to an animal hospital but never determined what was wrong. She has recovered and plataued at a level of activity which is pretty good for an old-girl her age: good appetite, walks well, sleeps well, not in pain. But, she has to pee a lot because of the kidney damage. She's a great dog and she will be sorely missed by me and Diana when her time is over.

In July, we vacationed in Black Butte Oregon with Diana's Sister's family. It was hot and sunny every day. The first night Caleb woke up at 12:30 am screaming and screamed for 4 or 5 hours. But other than that, they slept through the night most nights and took two naps a day. Diana and I we're able to go out to dinner by ourselves, twice, thanks to Tony and Danielle who stayed home to baby sit all the sleeping children.

We have some great help with the boys during the last month. A young woman named Jenni has been coming over Tuesday mornings and watching the boys for 5 or 6 hours. Diana and I have used the time to run errands, go out to breakfast, I had a flying lesson, etc. The boys like Jenni very much.

We've also found a young woman named Windy who, unfortunately, is leaving the area in September. She watched the boys last Thursday for 6 hours and gave us a chance to do some work and get other tasks accomplished.

Diana and I celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary on the 6th of August by getting a baby-sitter and going out to dinner. This was our first night-time soirée out of the house at the same time since the boys were born! The boys slept through the whole night and we had a great time going out.

We were able to go out again last Friday to celebrate Diana's birthday. We met friends at an excellent restaurant in Seattle. It was very easy to walk on the ferry and walk to dinner.

We've been living on Bainbridge Island for more than a year now and enjoying it very much. It is very beautiful and we've enjoyed meeting a lot of people here. The island is pretty small and you tend to run into people when you are out and about. We've enjoyed an outdoor music series on Wednesday nights a lot.

Time to sign-off for now - more later:


Posted by johnbenj at 10:14 PM | Comments (0)

June 26, 2005

New Pictures

in the photo gallery are pictures of our June trip to Santa Fe to celebrate a group of birthdays.

Posted by johnbenj at 9:35 PM | Comments (1)

June 9, 2005

1-year stats

The boys had their one-year check up last week and here are the vital stats:

Jake weighs 16 lbs, 13 oz and is 28 3/4" tall. His head has a circumference of 47.1 cm. Caleb weighs 18 lbs 15.5 oz and is 30 5/8" tall. His head has a circumference of 45.6 cm. In other words, they are small little dudes :)

Jake has had a fever (up to 102.5) for the last 24 hours but no other symptoms of being sick. We visited dr fred today and he didn't find any explanation or other symptoms so it will go as an unexplained-fever which is pretty commom for infants / toddlers. Since each boy got their 1-year shots about 9 days ago, there is a good chance that he is having a reaction to one of the shots.

We're travelling to Santa Fe tomorrow to see Grandpa Steve and Grammy Lynne, Uncle Nick and Aunt Jessica, Cousin Zachary, 2nd Cousin Bobby and Great Aunt Mary Lou. More when we return.

Posted by johnbenj at 8:36 PM | Comments (1)

June 1, 2005

One Year!

The boys are one year old!! Woazza! What a year!!

It is hard to believe a year has passed. The boys have grown so much and it's hard to remember what they looked like when they were born.

Diana put together a great 1st birthday party for them. You can see pictures in the May album here: http://thebenjs.com/gallery/albums.php

The boys had their 12 month check-ups yesterday. Jake's weight is a little light so we're supposed to add more calories to his diet. He has a slight rash on his back and shoulder to which we have been applying cortisone cream.

Our luck of no sickenesses had an abrupt ending. I got the flu at the beginning of May. A week later Diana got sick, and the boys followed within days. I'll speak for the whole family and say that none of us are feeling 100% yet.

Both the boys are crawling and up on all-fours a lot of the time. Jake likes to stick his rear way up in the air and look between his legs. Caleb can now climb our stairs!

We converted our living room into a playroom. We bought and installed gates for the doorways, added a padded mat for the floor, and filled the room with their toys. Its been very useful for keeping the kids occupied and safe while you get something done.

The received some ride-on toys for their birthday. It is a blast to see your kid sit on one for the first time. Big grins and giggles!! My favorite is the Rocking Eggplant


Don't miss the pictures in the gallery.

Just yesterday, for the first time ever, Diana and I left the boys with someone else and went out together sans children. We took about 6 hours and went to a wedding for good friends and really, really enjoyed ourselves. Yahoo!

Posted by johnbenj at 9:57 PM

May 7, 2005

Just when you think you know what is going on...

Well, well, well. What to say? The boys turned 11 months old a few days ago (April 30th). Caleb is crawling very well and can climb our stairs faster and faster each day. Jake likes to roll from point a to point b, and he does so with great accuracy. Jake is also starting to crawl; We thought/think that he might just go from rolling to walking. We shall see.

Healthwise the boys are o.k. They are both teething and with that comes lots of drool and some discomfort. Caleb's upset stomach seems to have been from the increase in saliva going to his stomach. He has been better the last week or so.

We did have an exciting time when a mirrored sliding-door to a walk-in closet fell on Caleb. It was a very light door and Caleb is just fine, but it did cause a lot of hubbub-balo for everyone involved. No harm done.

For the last 2 weeks we've been having morning naps at home, and not driving in the car. We thought that Caleb would have the easier time transitioning, but no, Jake has been a champ and Caleb the "squeaky wheel." Just when you think you have them figured out they go and switch on you.

Sleeping at night has been very good, though. They fall asleep with little fuss and stay on a consistant schedule of one waking at night and then sleeping till 7am. Considering they are going to bed at 6:30pm, or earlier some nights, we think they are doing very well.

Jake and Caleb are both eating solid foods very well now. Jake is a chow-hound sometimes. We went to the Bremerton Airport diner for lunch the other day and Jake just kept plowing his mac-and-cheese into his mouth. It's good to see the skinny-kid eat so much :)

This afternoon we'll be going to the new Children's Discovery Museum to have a group 1-year birthday party for babies of our PEPS group.

Posted by johnbenj at 11:23 AM | Comments (1)

April 24, 2005

A little baseball?

We took the boys to a Mariner's baseball game today. It was little league day so they each got two free baseball caps (for future use). An usher gave them each baseball cards, too. Great weather and Safeco field wasnt too crowded. We stopped in at Elliot Bay Books to add to the library and also visited Magic Mouse Toys, but bought nothing.

Caleb has had a stomach bug the last couple of days. He got really messy today and diana had to change his clothes in a Starbucks. Yucky work!

Till Later!

Posted by johnbenj at 7:23 PM | Comments (2)

March 25, 2005

A Grand visit and new pictures in the gallery.

We're all healthy here, and the weather has been great! The days continue to drag on (sometimes), but the months just fly by. The boys will be 10 months in just a few days.

The boys had a great visit from their grandparents.

You can see the pictures here: March 2005 gallery:

Posted by johnbenj at 10:37 PM | Comments (0)

March 7, 2005

The boys at 9 months.



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March 6, 2005

Caleb at 8 1/2 months


Posted by johnbenj at 7:28 PM | Comments (0)

March 3, 2005

Picture of the day:

Jake got a bath in the sink this morning:


Posted by johnbenj at 9:25 PM | Comments (1)

February 28, 2005

The boys are now sitting...

Everyone is doing great! The boys are now sitting up and Caleb is starting to crawl more than roll across the floor. Jake has been having teething pain as his top two teeth come in. He's got four great looking teeth now.

Both the boys are eating a great mix of baby foods and starting to drink water from sippy cups. Diana continues to nurse the boys and she deserves huge applause and appreciation for her dedication.

The boys will be 9-months old in a few days :) In this picture Caleb in on the right and Jake on the left. Check out a lot more pictures in our Photo Gallery


Posted by johnbenj at 6:32 PM | Comments (2)

February 9, 2005

New Pictures!

I've uploaded some recent pictures from February. Check them out here!

Posted by johnbenj at 8:50 PM | Comments (1)

January 21, 2005

A trip to the zoo

we went to the Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium today and had a great time. 60'ish degrees with sun and cool animals including a polar bear wrestling match, lions, elephants, whales and monkeys.

Check out the pictures!

Posted by johnbenj at 10:35 PM | Comments (1)

January 20, 2005

Two naps, or not two naps, that is the difference


It's become clear to us that getting these guys to nap every 2 or 2 1/2 hours (or when they look tired) is essential. But, trying to put two very different boys down for naps at the same time, in the same room, doesn't work (yet). Jake is likely to be fussy and cry loudly for a long time (1 + hours) and, understandably, Caleb doesn't fall asleep with that noise in the same room.

We have tried putting Caleb in a portable play-pen in another room for his nap. Most of the time he is able to fall asleep after 10 minutes of crying and fussing. He then sleeps anywhere from 45 minutes to 2 1/2 hours. This is excellent and we can usually count on a morning and afternoon nap from Caleb.

But, it's not his crib and it's not in his room.

After nursing, Jake is put down in his crib for his nap. We've been following the advice of Dr. Weisbluth and letting him cry himself to sleep (it works for Caleb). Sometimes he'll cry for 20 minutes and then nap for 15 or 30, but as a general rule, Jake does not take morning naps in his crib. It is more than likely that he'll cry for an hour straight and not fall asleep at all. After an hour of letting him cry we call it quits and go get him. We are all frazzled and feeling guilty by that point.

So, currently our situation is less then ideal.

Our plan is to first get each of the boys, one at a time, to fall asleep for naps in their cribs, in their room, without requiring someone to be there with them. The second step is to get each of the boys to fall asleep for naps when the other boys is also in the room.

We've heard stories that day-care providers are able to get 6 and 7 month olds to nap by rubbing their backs. So, this week we've changed the routine a little by staying in the room with the boys when we put them down for naps and trying the back rubbing method.

With the baby on his stomach, and almost pinning him down if he wants to roll over, it takes 10 to 20 minutes to have Caleb fall asleep (Interestingly enough that is the the same amount of time it takes if I let him cry it out).

With Jake, I've now had two successful sessions of rubbing his back until he falls asleep. It takes 20+ minutes and he cries the whole time. Slowly, he falls to sleep, but has only slept for about 30 or 40 minutes at a stretch. It is progress, but more work lies ahead.

One of the fall back routines is to have Diana take Jake to our bed and nurse him to sleep on our bed. She's able to get up and leave the room and today, for instance, Jake got about a 50 minute nap in. Great that he napped, but not great that its not in his crib or that he had to be nursed to sleep.

Our other standard operating procedure is to go for a drive. Bainbridge Island and the Kitsap county area are good for that because there are not a lot of stop lights. As long as the boys are well fed and clean they like riding in the car and will sleep for more than an hour at a time. It's good that their sleeping - just not good that they'll have to be moving in a car to do it.

Recognizing that we look at our situation through a magnifying glass, and that as one day melts into another, and then into another, I am sure we are more difficult on ourselves than we need to be. We are seeing progress on routine and need to remember that these little guys are only 7 months old and are doing really, really well.

Our nights are getting better, too. (knock on wood). Last night the boys went to bed at 7'pm and slept till 4'am and then woke up for good at 7:30am. Yahoo!!


Posted by johnbenj at 10:54 PM | Comments (0)

January 15, 2005

So much to do and so little time

It has been too long since the last post but there is so much to do and write that it is hard to even get started :) There are lots of new pictures to from Christmas and Santa Fe to up-load, lists of books we are reading to post, descriptions of Jake eating his first solid foods, Caleb's first swim in the pool and more. Keep checking back - We'll get more up soon!

Posted by johnbenj at 6:55 PM

January 4, 2005

Happy New Year

The new year started off crummy. First John, then Diana, got a stomach flu. It is no fun.

The boys don't seem to have caught it - fingers crossed. We went to a friends house for an early new years eve celebration and found out the next day that one of the boys woke up in the middle of the night with 'pink eye'. Hope the boys don't catch that either.

Now that we are back from Santa Fe we're going to try and get the boys to sleep longer through the nights, or at least, go back to sleep without nursing. It's 12:50 am now, and Jake is now crying again after I was sort of able to calm him down. I need to cut this short and go in again.

The gallery of pictures is being rebuilt now, so none other than Decembers are available. Work will be done soon and all of them will be available again.

Jake's first tooth has emerged! Lower right front tooth. Teething has been painful for him that last 10 to 14 days. Caleb hasn't seemed to experience any teething discomfort yet.

Posted by johnbenj at 12:54 AM | Comments (2)

December 31, 2004

Goodbye 2004.

We are filled with grief because of the tsunami disaster.  The power of nature and the impact on human life is jaw-dropping and humbling.   It is an unprecedented tragedy and we hope that the world's governments provide an unprecedented response of aid and service.  What a humbling reminder that humans are fragile visitors on this planet and that no life, and no day, should be taken for granted. 

A small recap of events for our 2004:

On May 30th, Diana gave birth to our two healthy boys.  Diana and I have been working together everyday to care for the boys and thus have been spending almost 24 hours a day together. The work of taking care of two infant boys has been very tiring and required patience and teamwork beyond what either of us imagined, but we wouldn't change a thing if we had a chance to do it over again.  We consider ourselves very lucky to have been able to both spend this time with the boys and try not to take anything for granted.  It's getting a little easier as we pass the 7-month mark.  The boys are really starting to be aware of their surroundings and developing into their own.

This summer was very busy for us.  Not only because of the twins but because we moved to a new house in late June.  We've started to put down new roots, both figuratively and literally, by meeting new friends and planting trees around our house. 

Diana and I celebrated our 10-year wedding anniversary this year!  And our oldest child Casey (OK, you're right, she is a dog) will be turning 15 years old in a few days!!  The cats, Rudy and Emma, are doing well, too.

And, of course, who could forget that the Red Sox actually won the World Series this year :)

John, Diana, Caleb and Jake wish everyone a happy and peaceful new year. 


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December 19, 2004

New Gallery and Pictures!

I have installed new gallery software on http://thebenjs.com/gallery and uploaded new pictures taken this month.   Please go check them out!

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December 11, 2004

Six Months

Time has flown by.  I have been meaning to write an update for the last two weeks so there is a lot write about.

Since the last update the boys have celebrated their first Thanksgiving, had their first over-nighter,  partied on their 6-month birthday, got a clean bill of health from their doctor, met Santa Claus and had their picture taken with him,  trimmed their first christmas tree and hung their stockings with care.

Img_3649We travelled to Portland to celebrate Thanksgiving with Diana's sister and her family.  This was the first time the boys were sleeping away from home.  The did OK, but not great and none of the four of us got much sleep.   At one point we had both the boys and Casey (the dog) on the bed with us - and with a full-size bed it was a crowded affair.  The boys were good-travelers and easy spirits for the two days we travelled.  Our next big adventure will be 7-days in Santa Fe for Christmas.

The boys had their six-month checkup.  Here are the details:

Jake's details are:

  • Weight: 13 Lbs 14.5 oz
  • Height: 2' 2 1/4"
  • Head: 43.9 cm

Caleb's details are:

  • Weight: 15 Lbs 12.5 oz
  • Height: 2'  3.5"
  • Head: 42.4 cm

More details later....

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November 19, 2004

5 1/2 Month Update

Img_3595_nored_1Thanksgiving is approaching quickly and fall has settled in.  The big Maple tree has lost all of its leaves and the days are getting very short.   Caleb and Jake are doing really well.  You can see in this picture that they are getting big quickly!  Caleb is on the left and Jake is on the right. 

There are new pictures from the first-half of November here.

We've settled into a nice routine of morning naps, mid-day outings and afternoon naps with bed time is between 6 and 7 pm.  Typically, the boys will sleep till 1 am when Diana feeds them, then they'll sleep till 5:30 am for another feeding.  At 8 am we start the day to do it all over again.  If we get to bed around 10 pm (rarely) we get a chance to get a good nights sleeps. 

Just as we're able to start to count on the boys sleeping more during the night, It's ironic that our dog Casey has started getting up two or three a times a night to go outside. If we don't get to her in time she finds a nice spot on the carpet or floor.   Oh well - laugh or cry, but don't sleep!

We continuing to experiment with solid foods.  Caleb has now tried bananas, sweet potato's and carrots.  Jake is still getting used to rice cereal.  We've been reading oodles of books and listening to different music. They giggle and laugh and they like to watch Dad dance around the room.

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November 4, 2004

Some Halloween pictures and video

We went on a 'pumpkin walk' with friends. Here is a video of Jake and Diana. Look for more pictures soon.

Download jake_at_pumpkin_walk.mov

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Caleb, Do you like your bananas?

We've started to give the boys solid foods. Here is a video of Caleb tasting his first bananas.
Download caleb_did_you_like_your_bananas.mov

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October 27, 2004

Now the boys will be able to say

I was born the year the Red Sox beat the Yankees and went on to win the World Series!


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October 26, 2004

New Pictures!

The Red Sox have won games 2 and 3 now. They have four chances to win one more game. Hard to not think that they are going to actually win the world series this year. But, we just saw them beat the Yankees after being down 0-3, and knowing the history of the Red Sox failures, it is wise to assume nothing. Ask me in botton of the 9th tomorrow and I'll let you know if I think the Red Sox are going to win the World Series.

October Pictures have been uploaded

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October 24, 2004

Caleb Sleeps Through The Night

Caleb went to sleep at 7:30 pm last night and slept till 5 am. Jake woke up at 1:30 am for a feeding, but we let Caleb sleep and we didn't hear from him until the morning. Yahoo! Oh, and the Red Sox won game 2!

Posted by johnbenj at 9:54 AM | Comments (0)

October 23, 2004

The Red Sox win game 1

The last time the Red Sox and the St. Louis Cardinals played each other in the World Series was 1967 - the year I was born. My mother was a Red Sox fan, and I am sure she was crushed when the Cardinals beat the Sox in 7 games. It is a nice coicidence, then, that the Cardinals and Red Sox are playing in the World Series the year Caleb and Jake were born. Go Red Sox! The Red Sox did win Game 1 tonight (11-9).

We went to a 'pumkin walk' tonight at a local plant nursey. Jake was wearing his spider hat. Click here to see jake_at_pumpkin_walk.mov

Posted by johnbenj at 11:59 PM | Comments (0)

October 22, 2004

Some videos...

John has finally found enough time to setup his macintosh and has been able to import some of the video thatr has been taken over the past four+ months.

Here is a quick, sample video - saved as a QuickTime ".mov". This was taken just before they had their bath. There is no sound on this clip.

Click here to play caleb_and_jake_on_the_bed.mov

Posted by johnbenj at 7:03 PM | Comments (1)

October 15, 2004

How can I miss you if you never go away?

it's 11:15pm and i'm sitting in the nursery while diana breast-feeds both boys. Jake woke up 10 minutes a go grunting and crying and woke Caleb. It's a safe bet that after they're done they'll sleep till 3'ish. Lets hope so. They are holding hands tonight while they are eating.

Today and yesterday Diana and I split up with each of us taking a baby and doing something different. Diana took Jake both days because he's not taking a bottle now but Caleb is. Today, Diana took him to their play group with other mothers we've met through PEPS group. I took Caleb for a hike with an old friend from Seattle. We attempted to climb Green Mountain but headed up the side of Gold mountain instead. Failing miserable even with a GPS :) Yesterday, Diana went into Seattle and shopped with two other moms, with Jake. I took Caleb for a walk along Rich Passage inside Fort Ward State Park. Great fall color, amazing sky and sunshine. We spent the rest of the afternoon running errands and picking Mom up at the ferry.

Both the boys have been in good moods for each of us. Each day we've been excited to see the other boy and find out about their day...

The boys finished about 11:35 - time for bed.

Posted by johnbenj at 8:05 AM | Comments (1)

October 12, 2004

From Bainbridge


It has been almost two weeks since I last posted an update about Caleb and Jake. In some ways it has been more of the same: they cry, poop, laugh, eat and poop some more. Long nights with three or four trips to the boy's room so Diana can nurse them back to sleep are still the norm.

There have also been a lot of great new stuff, too. Slowly but surely, right in front of our eyes these guys are getting bigger and stronger. For instance, we've now purchased our "convertable" car seats for the boys because they are getting too big to use their infant seat. Caleb lis starting to enjoy lying on his back, something he didn't like to do before. Maybe it is fun now because he can suck his toes.

They are both able to hold their necks without support now (most of the time) From their backs, you can use their arms to pull them into a sitting position, and since just yesterday, to a standing position! Stay tuned for pictures of that!

Health wise the boys are both doing well. In that regard, no news is good news.

We'll be buying the boys high-chairs in the next day or two and starting to introduce them to solid foods.. Rice cereal to begin with. Look for video and or pictures of that soon.

Stay tuned for more....

Posted by johnbenj at 9:24 AM | Comments (0)

October 1, 2004

4 Months Old


Yesterday was September 30th and the 4 month mark for the boys! It is a great milestone. They are both much more attentive, and laugh and squeal, like most kids their age. It is a lot of fun to have the interaction with them rather than have little response. For example, Caleb now likes to be lifted into the air briskly while you yell "weeeee". The almost always makes him laugh and smile. Jake, from across a room, will make eye-contact with you and crack a smile. Enough to make your legs melt.

Jake's cold has passed and hence his congestion has cleared up which has allowed him to sleep more easily.

We all, including Casey, took the ferry to Seattle yesterday to visit Children's Hospital so that Caleb could have two procedures done to investigate why he got a bladder/kidney infection. He had an ultrasound and a Voiding Cystourethrogram (VCUG). A voiding cystourethrogram is performed by inserting a catheter into the urethra. Liquid contrast material is then instilled into the bladder through the catheter. X-rays are taken before, during and after filling of the bladder. When the bladder is full, the catheter is removed. While the patient voids, additional x-rays are taken.

Needless to say, Caleb screamed and cried a lot during the VCOG. Because X-Rays are used, Jake was not allowed to be in the room and that meant that Diana stayed out as well. I think it was harder for Diana and Jake to hear Caleb screaming from outside the room not being know what was happening inside the room. There was cherry-syrup to dip his pacifier in that made it a little better - and a numbing solution for the penis - but it is a pretty horrific process. They strap the boys to a board, legs and hands and head and then stick the catheter inside.

The good news: no reflux was found.

The boys had their 4 month check up yesterday with Fred Walters. Caleb's weight was 13 lbs, 13.5 oz, with a height of 25 3/8". Jake weighed 12 lbs, 8 oz and is 24 3/4" long. Those are really great measurements for twins- Caleb's weight puts him into the 25 percentile and Jake's into the 10th percentile. Caleb's length places him in the 50th-75th percentile. Jake's length places him in the 25-50 percentile. Both have increased their weight and height relative to their peers so they are growing very well. Jake's head is bigger than Caleb's with a circumference of 42 cm compared to 40.6 cm.

Posted by johnbenj at 7:11 AM | Comments (1)

September 21, 2004

16 weeks


This sunday marked 16 weeks since the boys were born. We've been very tired this last week. Lack of sleep is starting to catch-up to us and take its toll. Jake had some cogestion from a cold this week and it made it difficult to sleep. On Saturday night we had him sleep sitting up in a swing and he slept for 5 hours before waking, which was a great improvement over the 30 minutes of sleep he was getting the night(s) before.

On Sunday night, Jake awoke at 9'ish, nursed and then slept till 5:30 - the longest he has ever slept in one strech. Last night, Monday, Caleb slept really well as well, only waking once and quickly going back to sleep after nursing.

Today, Diana and I tried to start putting a better routine in effect for napping during the day. It took 1.5 hours of nursing and calming before they both fell asleep but then they slept for 2.5 hours, awaking at 4:30 this afternoon. We'll try again tomorrow, and the next day, and the next day. The goal is to have them napping twice during the day and helping them get used to falling asleep on their own during the day and during the night.

On Sunday we took a long drive "around" the Hood Canal. We took a detour to see Lake Cushman where we found this awesome view:


I've put more pictures in a new photo album - Click here to lake a look.

Posted by johnbenj at 11:04 PM | Comments (0)

September 17, 2004

a long, long night

7:55 am :: Ey! Ey! Ey! Last night was very long. The boys went to bed at 7:30, as usual, but Caleb woke up again at 11:00. Then again at 1:00 am, and Jake at 2:00. And Caleb at 3:30 am. And Jake at 4:00 am. And Caleb at 5:00 am. And, again at 7:00 am. There is now no more hope that we'll be able to crawl back into bed for another 30 seconds of sleep. Our day has begun.

Our best guess for why the many awakenings is that the boys are gassy. A diaper change at 4:30 revealed wet, but not soiled, diapers and we could hear lots of tooting from each of them.

Diana is going to try eliminating milk from her diet to see if that makes a difference. That is going to be very hard on her. But, we're out of answers at this point, and tired as hell, so anything sounds like it is worth trying.

Posted by johnbenj at 8:03 AM | Comments (0)

September 13, 2004

Are those twins?

With Diana's Mom here we ventured to Port Gamble and Port Townsend for sightseeing and lunch. The weather was much better (warmer) than we had expected. We have been using the new twin stroller with much better results than the first couple of tries. At first, Caleb would only cry in the stroller but on this trip he enjoyed the motion and even slept a little. Port Gamble is a small tourist focused town that has a farmers market and antiques fair on saturdays and sundays.

Laree and Diana:

Diana and Caleb:


After Port Gamble we drove on to Port Townsend to eat at a mexican restaurant we like ( El Sarape Mexican Restaurant. 630 Water Street). When we arrived in Port Townsend we discovered that the annual Wooden Boat Festival was going on, along with a art and crafts fair. http://www.woodenboat.org/festival/

We strolled the fair a little before going to the restaraunt. We were very worried that the boys were going to starting screaming and crying in the middle of the restaraunt but we had a great meal and the boys were perfect angels. Caleb slept and Jake just sat quietly looking at his Mom and his Grandmother. It was very nice.

Today, Monday Sept 13th, we walked onto the ferry and went into Seattle. John was able to get some work done at a client's location while Diana, her Mom and the boys explored Pioneer Square and the Pike Street Market. The new stroller worked well again - but even though it is the same width as a wheel chair it is impossible to get into and out of places. Very frustrating, really.

When we are out with the boys there are so many people who stop her to ask about the boys. It makes us feel uncomfortable with all the attention. Diana said that today, at Pikes St Market, peope were taking pictures of the twins in front on the famous flying fish counter - not pictures of the fish - but pictures of some strange twins. I think they are cute, of course - but I am suprised that others really think the boys are worth taking pictures of. Flattering, I guess - but weird.

And lastly, Caleb and Jake were 15 weeks old yesterday!

Posted by johnbenj at 11:13 PM | Comments (0)

September 12, 2004

Keeping up with the garden

Diana and I got a little yard work done the other day.


Caleb wasn't too happy when his hat went over his eyes:

Posted by johnbenj at 4:33 AM | Comments (0)

September 11, 2004

Grandma Van Treeck comes to visit

Diana's Mom is visitng from Boise for a few days and getting to know the boys. Jake and Caleb have been showing her the ropes with their typical behavior - Jake is gassy and Caleb is cranky :) When we went to our twins club meeting she took care of the boys.Img_2988_7

after the meeting we drove to Poulsbo and had a picnic lunch of Subway sandwiches at the Liberty Park marina. My highlight for the day was an hour-long nap!

Posted by johnbenj at 10:03 PM | Comments (1)

September 6, 2004

14 weeks


Caleb and Jake were 14 weeks old yesterday.

This week has been hard because both of the boys have colds. Caleb is on antibiotics because some bacteria was found in a urine culture. They both have been running low grade fevers (100.9 is the highest we've seen). Childrens Tylenol has seemed to help them be more comfortable.

Saturday night was one of the longest on record. I don't think Diana got any sleep until about 4:30 am and then only for an hour or so. Both the boys were unable to fal asleep and were only comforted by nursing. On Sunday evening the fevers were gone.

Posted by johnbenj at 1:02 PM | Comments (0)