The First Birthday of Fawkes and Phoenix

Our twin baby boys are a year old now!

I suppose really the story is the entire weekend, not just the birthday itself. Tristen and I made a Costco run with the boys Friday evening and got more than we had planned, but we were out of a good bit of stuff. As I said, these fellas have been eating us out of house and home.

That’s a strange saying, by the way, or repetitive at least. Why “house AND home?” Aren’t they essentially the same thing in this instance? The meaning is that someone is eating so much and it’s costing so much money that you’re going to become homeless, right? Maybe it should be updated to “eating us homeless” or “eating us into the poorhouse,” although they don’t technically have poorhouses anymore, do they? I feel like that’s kind of Dickensian.

Anyway, we spent most of the evening cleaning up around the house. We cleaned a little more Saturday morning. My family started arriving around 11. The Sawyers got here first and they were still working their way inside when Amanda came by to drop Milly off.

Andra and Josh went to go check in at Summer Sands while I took Jackson with me for a tattoo consultation. Tristen suggested I get a new tattoo for my birthday, and I’ve got a number of ideas for some, so I decided that was a nice idea. It won’t be a very cheap or practical birthday present, but like Donna and Tom said, “Treat yo’self.”

My parents did the opposite of Josh and Andra, checking in at the hotel before coming over to the house. Erin wasn’t able to make it this weekend (work) and Adam got in around 8:30 if I remember what he said correctly. He went straight to the hotel and stayed in Mom and Dad’s room.

Our microwave randomly broke that day. Tristen said after heating up bottles for the boys it just cut off. I checked the outlets and everything, but it was dead. Josh suggested we not try to repair it because microwaves hold a charge and further, if something caused it to short the same thing might happen again. Tristen went out and got a new one on Sunday.

We weren’t totally sure what to do for dinner. Tristen had said something during the week about doing spaghetti and meatballs, but then I guess she had been looking at Olive Garden’s takeout menu or something, so (after loading up the cars, forgetting the car keys, and locking ourselves out of the house before finally getting back in with some help) that’s what we did. We got there around 5:30, but there was already a 45-minute wait, so we went to Agostino’s.

Duke, ranked #2, had a game at Virginia, ranked #3, at 6:00. I made sure to ask our waitress (more than once, just to be sure), to turn one of the TVs to ESPN so I could watch it while we ate. I felt pretty good about the game, since Duke beat Virginia at Duke in the first game they played after Tre Jones got injured in the loss against Syracuse. Duke got out to a really hot start, hitting a bunch of three pointers. That’s particularly surprising given that Duke is among the worst three point shooting teams in the country this season. The final score was 81-71, the most points scored against Virginia’s defense all season, beating the previous best of 72 (also by Duke).

Addy and Jackson wanted to sit next to Fawkes and Phoenix, so we put them at the end of the table and they fed them snacks and kept them happy until the food came. I fed them once Tristen’s salad arrived and Tristen took over when my dinner came. Towards the end of the dinner Fawkes did this thing where he made some strange new sound, poked his belly out, and beat it. I didn’t see it, but Jackson and Tristen both told me about it.

Addy stayed at our house and had a sleepover with Milly while everyone else went on back to Summer Sands. The girls did some crafts and played some Minecraft before I told them they should get in bed, but could watch Netflix or something.

The actual birthday was Sunday, the 10th. Milly and Addy were already up (Addy had had a dream about a teacher yelling at her for something she didn’t do) when Tristen and I woke up, so all four of us went to the boys’ room to sing happy birthday and get them up.

The day was a bit of a blur. Fawkes and Phoenix did their morning routine. I went over to Torrie and Johnny’s to watch Sebastian and Gabriel for a bit because Torrie was out of town until a little later and Johnny had to take Freya to the vet to get a potential bladder infection (or something along those lines) checked out.

People started coming over and helping set up. Torrie and Tristen (who had gone out to get the new microwave) did the decorations and such. Adam and I blew up balloons (and Adam went to pick up some helium balloons). My mom took Milly and Addy to a bakery (to get them out of the house a bit?). Johnny set up a bounce house. Laura brought some fruits. Tristen and I prepped some food. There was a bit going on.

During all that, my parents went for a walk. Milly didn’t want to go, so I went to talk to her about it and we ended up having a pretty deep and meaningful talk.

The party was mostly family. Jenna came to help us celebrate, as did Addy (the grown-up Addy), who brought her boyfriend’s six-year-old son. He was right between Sebastian (3) and Milly (9), but he was able to play and had a good time.

The boys, of course, didn’t really know what was going on. They enjoyed their smash cake though, which Laura got from Whole Foods I think. Fawkes jumped right into it, but Phoenix wasn’t sure what to do with it at first. They both got nice and messy though, and they both finished their whole cake. (More like a large cupcake.) They got some fun stuff, including a little tool bench from the Sawyers, Duke onesies from my parents (at my request because I couldn’t find any I liked online and they were coming from Durham). I can’t believe I hadn’t bought any for them before this point. Nonny and Pappy got them a wagon. They also got some diapers, a good bit of money, and gift cards.

The weather wasn’t as nice as it had been here last week, but it wasn’t bad out; long sleeve weather, but not bad in a t-shirt. A lot of people hung out outside by the bounce house. All the kids enjoyed that until it flipped over. Nobody was hurt, but Johnny shut it down after that.

The boys opened some presents and people started taking off. The party was a little late, starting at 2:30, so we knew the boys would be in a good post-nap mood, but Adam, Andra’s crew, and my parents had a bit of driving to do to get back home.

Tristen, Milly, and I were all exhausted. Milly wanted us all to snuggle together and waited on the couch for me and Tristen to finish putting things away. Food and disposables, mostly, of course. The decorations will probably be up another week and we probably won’t move the dining room table back to its proper place until we have another family dinner over here.

By the time Tristen and I finished up, Milly was passed out. It might have been 7:30. I carried her back to her room. Tristen and I were asleep not too long after.