Thank you all for sharing in the lives of our three amazing children- Mairead, Jack, and Ben. We hope you visit often!

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Mairead in 2008

Happy New Year!

It's hard to believe that another year has passed already. We have enjoyed so much happiness this year and we are excited for what 2009 will bring. Mairead is so much fun and it is amazing to see how she has changed in the past twelve months. You can see from the slideshow that she has grown up so much!

If it's possible, I think I love her just a little bit more every day. Last night, I went into her room to put the covers back on her, and when I came back into our room, I said to Dave, "I just love her so much." I am overwhelmed with love and joy when I look at her, and that will never get old.

We, of course, are anxious about all the changes our little family can expect in 2009; mostly, we are concerned with how our little girl will like being a big sister. We hope that she adjusts well, and we are thankful to have so many people around who will help us all with such a huge transition. I admit that I am more than a little worried that Mairead won't like the babies, or that she will be upset with me for having to 'share' her Mom, Daddy, and everyone else. I know she won't ever remember the boys NOT being here, but I just hope she always knows how special she is to us.

Every day, she does something new and adorable. Right now, she is enthralled with a coloring book that Ms. Pat from daycare gave to her. She doesn't use it to color, she just carries it around, and she gets upset when she can't find it. The other thing she likes to carry around is a magnet with a picture of herself on it. She even took it with her for her nap today! I suppose that is better than the empty coke bottle she took to bed with her last week.

She is talking more all the time with her newest words being "night night" and "tweet tweet." My mom gave her a little stuffed bird for Christmas and she LOVES it. She says, "tweet tweet" and then she throws it. Picks it up, and repeats the process. Well, birds are supposed to fly, right? I'll try to get some video of it- it is too funny!

Thanks to everyone who checks in on the blog and who shares our life and our little girl with us. She is the most amazing thing to ever happen to us, and we are so thrilled and so lucky to be expecting two more little miracles in 2009. We truly are blessed with everything and everyone we have in our lives. Happy New Year to all of you- best wishes for a happy and healthy 2009!

Monday, December 29, 2008

26 Week Ultrasound

Technically, I am 25 weeks and 5 days pregnant, but today was my 26 week ultrasound. With MoMs (Moms of Multiples), every day is important so we count each one very carefully! The boys look great! The perinatologist I see was happy with everything, and he doesn't see any problems at all right now. Jack is smaller at 1lb 8oz, and Ben weighs 1lb 10oz. Those weights are nice and close, so there is no sign of one baby taking more than his share, which is good! Just 4 weeks ago, they were 13 oz and 15 oz, so they are really getting big now!

The peri was very encouraging and told me that my babies "picked the right mother" because they are doing so well. Of course, Dave and I were thrilled to hear all of this good news. Now, let's just hope they keep it up until at least March!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Day

Christmas Day brought us all together at Nana and Grampy's house. We had a great holiday celebrating with our ever-expanding family. This picture includes (left to right) back row- my brother, Brian, Jen's boyfriend, Mike, my sister, Jen, Dave, me, my dad. Front row- Brian's girlfriend, Christin, my Nana, Mairead, my mom, Katie's husband, Steve, and Katie.

Mairead looked adorable in her little Christmas dress (one of many cute outfits for the holiday!). She spent a lot of time playing with her dollhouse and the little people inside that she calls 'kids.'

Christmas morning, Mairead was dressed in her little Santa outfit from her Grandma Dorothy. She really got into the Christmas spirit by investigating all of the presents and saying "ooooh" every time she saw something pretty. She loved being at my parents' house because there were lights everywhere and they have TWO trees! So exciting when you are 17 months old!

Santa brought Mairead this great play kitchen. It makes all kinds of sounds, lights up, and has tons of little buttons to push and things to do. She loves it!

This horse was actually a gift that my Nana gave her last year, but she was too little for it. So, we brought it out again this year and she had much more fun with it. It makes noise and shakes it's head as it rocks- pretty cute!

This last one is one of the few with her Santa hat actually on. She looked adorable in the outfit, especially with the pigtails!
We are very thankful for the amazing Christmas we had. We were surrounded by people we love and who love us very much. I have always loved Christmas, but now that we have Mairead, it is even more special and even more fun. I think that our Christmases are going to be pretty exciting from now on!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas Eve

As you can imagine, I have a million pictures of our holiday festivities, so I'll separate them into a few different posts... starting with Christmas Eve! Mairead got all dolled up to head over to Danny and Katie's house. Thanks to Jean for letting us borrow the coat that Sarah wore when she was little... it doesn't seem that long ago!

These pictures are out of order, so this next one is actually from when we got back from the Christmas Eve party. Dave gave Mairead 'Twas the Night Before Christmas so that he could start a tradition of reading it to our kids on Christmas Eve.

Back at the party, we had a special visitor! Every year, Santa makes an appearance at the party. The kids love to see him and Santa does a great job listening to all of their last minute requests. Mairead was very curious about Santa and she liked watching him, but there was no way she was sitting on his lap.

The other kids were not shy at all and hopped up to get in one last request.

Mairead was much happier while watching them from the safety of Daddy's arms.

There are more Christmas Eve pictures in the slideshow to the right, and I'll upload Christmas Day pictures soon. Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Card Photo Shoot

A while back, we set up Mairead for her 'photo shoot' for Christmas cards (I know, they are late-- they will be there soon!). I just thought I'd share a few of her shots with milk and cookies! Only a few days left until Santa comes! I hope you all were good this year!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

24 week update

Today I had my 24 week appointment with my doctor, and everything looks great! He is really happy with the boys' strong heartbeats, my blood pressure, my weight, everything. That is always good to hear! He also did a test to see if I am at a high risk for pre-term labor in the next two weeks, and it was negative. Good news all around! The boys' heartrates were 141 and 150, which is where they usually are. I am measuring the size of someone who is 28 weeks pregnant with a singleton. The picture below is NOT flattering, but you get the idea...Just wanted to give you the update!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


This past weekend we were finally able to put up our own Christmas tree. Mairead has been very impressed with it, and has been more interested this time. If you look at the picture, you will notice that there is a good sized gap between ornaments in the middle- she can reach them and likes to take them off of the tree. She is very gentle, but she loves to stare at them.

She climbed up onto the hearth herself to see the stockings... maybe she is waiting for Santa already.

She found this little Pooh ornament and has been carrying him around. She took him with her for her nap the other day, and at dinner, brought him to her chair and very deliberately placed him in the little cupholder on her tray. It's pretty cute! She can say, "Pooh" now, and it is very sweet.

Whenever Mairead comes into the house or down from her nap, she sees the tree and gets very excited. Her new 'word' is "oooohh," and she uses it to tell us how much she loves the Christmas decorations!

I hope that you are all enjoying the holiday season without too much stress! To our NY family- we hope that you are thawing out after the storm!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Monaghan Family Tree Decorating

One Monaghan holiday tradition is that we all get together to decorate the Christmas tree at my parents' house. Last Sunday, we were in Lowell to celebrate this tradition with Mairead's Nana and Grampy, her aunts and uncles, and a few friends. Thanks to everyone for making the time to keep this tradition going!

Mairead was really good about the whole thing. She did not try to take ornaments off the tree and watched intently as we decorated it.

She did really like this beaded garland, but not for the tree! She was so cute- I don't know where she learned to try on necklaces, but it seemed to come very naturally to her!

She was not, however, a big fan of this Santa. He moves, and she was a little thrown off by that.

I think her favorite part was the lights on the tree. She just sat and looked at them in her cute little Christmas PJs (thanks, Jean!).
We will be decorating our own tree this weekend, so I will have more holiday pictures to share!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Birthday Party at Gymboree

This past weekend, Mairead was invited to her friend, Ailish's, first birthday party at Gymboree. We had never been to Gymboree before, so this was a new and fun experience for all of us!

There were a ton of things for the kids to do there- mostly climbing on things, sliding, playing with different toys, and singing and dancing. I'm sure you can guess that the singing and dancing was Mairead's favorite part. Although, there are times when the Gymboree teacher wants all the kids to sit in a circle with their moms and dads, and then follow directions to complete a new activity. Our kid is not so much for the following directions part. She was having a great time, but was more interested in exploring the place and in intently watching what everyone was doing.

She was not so sure about the tunnels. She did go in one eventually, but only to chase the ball she had lost. She spent a lot of the day trying to get the balloons that her mom and dad kept hiding from her. 10,000 things to do, and all she wants are the balloons she can't have... of course!

She was a little confused by 'parachute time' at first, but she did like it when they waved it around and she got to climb under it.

Mairead and Ailish both kept looking at their dads like, what are we doing here? But they were having fun!
Mairead was a little cranky that day, and we attributed it to her not taking a nap before we went. She had not been sleeping all that well a few nights before, either, but she was still in a good mood, just a little off. Anyway, imagine my surprise when on Monday, she was laughing and I saw in her mouth 4 new teeth! She had gotten her molars sometime in the past 4-5 days, and she barely complained at all (sorry, Megan!). I felt bad because we were just telling people she was cranky and overtired, but she was cutting four new teeth! She is such a good kid-- I have a feeling that we are in trouble with these boys- can we get so lucky again and have two more happy babies? We certainly hope so!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Thanksgiving in Lowell

After celebrating with our family in New York, we headed back to Massachusetts to celebrate with our family here. We call Monaghan Thanksgiving 'fake Thanksgiving' because we just do everything on Saturday instead of Thursday, which gives all of us a chance to celebrate twice!

Thanks to Judy for this cute little jumper- I have been waiting for Thanksgiving for her to wear it because it just seemed to fit the holiday.

We had a great time celebrating with everyone. Thanks to everyone who spent the day with us and those who stopped by in the evening just to see Mairead.
Unrelated story- I have to brag about my kid for a minute. The other day, Mairead found a crumpled up tissue on the living room floor. She walked over to it saying, "Yuck, yuck." She picked it up and carried it into the kitchen, still saying, "Yuck," where she then walked over to the trash barrel and put it in. She was so proud of herself-- how cute is that? Now, if only I could get her to do laundry...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

New York Thanksgiving

To celebrate Thanksgiving, we headed to Grandma and Grandpa's house in New York. We were excited to spend time with everyone, especially since I cannot go back out there for quite some time. My doctor doesn't want me too far away! We had a good drive out there with Mairead sleeping the whole way. When we arrived, however, she thought it was time to get up and play, so she didn't go back to sleep until after 1 a.m.!

On Thanksgiving Day, we celebrated the holiday at Ryane, Dave, and Rachael's house. The girls (Ryane included!) had a great time playing. Rachael was great about sharing with Mairead and showing her how to use her toys. Mairead particularly liked Rachael's horses, and the girls had them all over the house.

On Friday, more family members were kind enough to come to an open house at Grandma and Grandpa's house so that we could all spend some time together. Everyone was very generous with their early Christmas gifts for Mairead, and even some gifts for Jack and Ben! We know we are so lucky to have a family who loves and supports us in so many ways. Thank you so much to everyone who came to visit!

Mairead loves her new toys- especially since they light up and make lots of fun sounds.

This one is from Thanksgiving night-- can you tell that the girls were ready for bed after a big turkey dinner? We all were!

This is one of my favorites from the weekend. It was great to see Mairead and Rachael spending time together and having so much fun.

There are many more pictures of our NY trip in the slideshow to the right of this post. Again, thanks to everyone who helped make it a great trip. We will be back to visit after Jack and Ben make their debut!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Catching Up...

I know, I know, I have been slacking on the blog! We did a lot of traveling and have had a very busy week, so I have lots of pictures to post of our two Thanksgivings, the Open House in NY, our visit from my grad school friends, and our ultrasound today. I will have plenty of time for updates now, though, since Tuesday was my last day at work. It was bittersweet, and I definitely shed some tears while driving out of the parking lot, but I know that the best thing I can do for the boys is to stay home and rest. So, that is what I will do!

Speaking of the boys, we had another ultrasound today and everything looks great! The boys are both growing well and the perinatologist doesn't see anything to be concerned about right now. We were very happy to hear that! Also, our boys now have names! Baby A is now Jack David, and Baby B is now Benjamin Brian (Ben). It's nice to refer to them by name.

These are some of the 3D images from the ultrasound. I know that some people are a little creeped out by these, but we are just amazed by them. These pictures are a little hard to make out, but the first one is of one little tiny foot. In the second one, you can see three of their four little feet. Ben's feet are crossed at the ankles, so you can only see one.

What was really cute was when the technician was measuring Jack, all of a sudden, Ben's little head poked into the picture. He rested his head on Jack's chest and they cuddled for a second. It was truly amazing to see. I'm glad they are getting along!

Ben is the bigger boy at 15 ounces, while Jack is not far behind at 13 ounces. Both weights are well within healthy parameters, so we are thrilled.
Backing up a bit, last Monday we had visitors and new friends for Mairead! Several of my friends from grad school came over since Megan (who now lives in California) was back in New England for a visit. Mairead had a chance to hang out with Will, whom she has known, literally, since before they were born. Megan and I were pregnant at the same time in our second year of our Master's program. Mairead is 3 weeks older than Will, and they have a lot in common!

Also visiting were Domenic and Ainsley, 18 months and 3years. The kids were so much fun to watch and they all got along really well! I was proud of Mairead for sharing her house and her toys with other kids.

She IS, however, quite a little sippy cup thief, as she always seems to end up with someone else's drink.

Mairead and Will were both happy to share some pizza.

I don't think they can call this a date, but they did have dinner together (sorry, Connor)!

It was great to see everyone- thanks to Megan, Jill, Amy, Lisa, and Caitlin for coming to visit! I will be posting our NY pictures and our Lowell Thanksgiving pictures soon!