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Ha, ha - quite funny how people can ask. One should never be surprised.

PS. Think Kate resembles your mom a lot. The genetic pool is big. My sis is a copy of our great-great grandmother. (Modelpretty and very photogenic. Envied her throughout all childhood....)


Your twins are sooo cute. Some people are just dof and don't know the difference with identical and non-identical twins.I have four kids and believe me they grow up so fast. Enjoy this age as everyday they learn something new. Adam looks alot like you and Kate a mix of you and Marko ( funny how different people see differently).
Take care
PS: Great blog!

Tertia, my MIL says kids are cute so their parents won't kill them - it's for the continuation of the human race. Think she's right? Your kids are mighty cute.

You know the time will come when they are asked if they are identical. You should teach them to say, "No, we are dizygotic."

Wow, who did those beautiful murals? Is that the kids' room in your house?

God, T, I read stuff like this and I can't believe how similar the situation is with my twins, who are about 6 weeks younger than yours. My Mothers of Multiples club has discussed how we all get the "are they identical" question about b/g twins, so it is an irritation worldwide.

But my son, who was always slower and was a candidate for therapy now speaks better than his sister. But he is huggy and kissy and cries when you yell at him. She stares everyone down. She gets 10 time-outs to each one of his and is tough as can be. She is 3 inches shorter and 5 pounds lighter (which also contributes to people not thinking that they are twins.)

I so hear you about the fighting but the loving is really special. My daughter dropped her "baby" at the playground, and when another kid picked it up, my son ran over, ripped it out of her hand, and said "Nicole's!" and then took it to his sister. V v cute.

Love hearing your stories.

girls generally advance faster with their verbal skills than boys do, while boys tend to have better spacial and depth perceptive skills. she can talk up a storm and is clumsy as shit while he is mute or unintelligible and can keep his balance on anything. your experience is normal.

and, by contrast, we do call them "the twins" because we sometimes need to distinguish them from our older singleton.

I too get unbelievably annoyed by the "are they identical?" question when mine are boy/girl twins. I never understood how people could think they are identical - like Adam and Kate mine look totally different and there is the whole issue of different anatomical parts! Imagine my suprise the other night while watching a special on Mulitples on the Womb on the National Geographic channel (http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/channel/ET/popup/200701142000.html) I discovered that B/G monozygotic twins do exist. Its rare but it does happen. Something happens where an egg has three sex chromosomes and when it splits one of them disappears leaving one boy and one girl. Very rare - but can indeed happen! I still think it is a dumb question, but thought you might find that interesting. Love hearing about Adam and Kate!

My twins are both girls. One has brown hair, brown eyes. The other has blonde hair and blue eyes. There is a 2 inch height difference. I constantly get, "are they identical?" At least it is better than them being called a boy, like they were when they were younger. Ummm....they are completely dressed in pink with ribbons in their hair! I think not!

People are clueless about twins, etc. I once had my son (now 6, then 2) dressed in camouflage overalls and people kept calling him the cutest little girl.

Ditto Caroline on learning that b/g monozygotic twins *are* possible (isn't NG channel cool?)....but still! All those questions must get tiresome.

Any sage advice for people expecting twins? Anything besides vodka to ease the transition from none to two that I can pass along to the intended parents of the two I'm carrying? They're scared shitless and could use some help.

We get the translations all of the time. I love it. My 4 year old will translate her 2 year old sister's language. Even through the pacifer!

I find it harder to call the b/g twins "Twins" than same sex twins. Don't know why.

And why worry about killing them when they are beating up on each other. Let them do it to themselves.

I get the same thing ALL the time with my B/G twins. What I can't understand is when my daughter is clearly dressed in PINK with hair bows and my son is dressed in BLUE with trucks ppl. still ask if they are IDENTICAL. Don't ppl. know the defnition of the word IDENTICAL? Don't they know it means "EXACTLY THE SAME", not, "sort of looks a little alike"?
I agree with you that they are awfully cute together and probably cuter than just having one, and watching them play off each other is, simply put, quite amazing and entertaining.
But, as an only parent to twin toddlers I can report that I still have singleton envy sometimes. Like every time we leave the house and I have to look after them by myself in a store, on a playground, at a restaurant, at the beach, etc., etc., etc.....
It's awfully hard keeping track of two and not losing one much less keeping them from killing themselves! Toddlers need constant supervision for safety's sake. One adult per child is required, but, like your earlier post on singleton envy states, we only have two arms.

My mom and uncle are not twins, but because my Uncle had chronic ear infections and horrible scar tissue on his ear drums, he couldn't hear to learn how to speak correctly. Everyone in my family says it was like my uncle spoke a different language and the only one that understood him was my mom.

I just watched an incredible program on twins (National Geographic?). They studied twin behavior inside the womb and their behavior after birth. Whatever behavior they exhibited while in the womb they continue outside the womb. Twins who fought a lot in the womb, continue to do so outside of the womb and in an identical manner. For example, a fairly domineering twin would punch the more passive twin while they were still in the womb. The more passive twin would retreat and lean his head against the side of the womb. At age six, when the two would fight–the more passive twin would retreat to his bedroom and lay his head on the pillow in much the same way.

"Kate is fair with brown curly hair and looks a lot like our Fertility Specialist." has to be one of the funniest sentences I've read in ages. Tertia, you slay me.

On the whole "how can they not know the difference between identical & fraternal twins?" question, I once asked my doctor friend the same thing. She explained that most people don't understand that identical twins come from a single fertilized ovum which separated into two and that identical twins therefore have exaclty the same genetic material, while fraternal twins are from two separate ova and therefore are no more genetically similar than any other siblings. People are just completely and utterly clueless about genetics.

I have b/b twins. Stranger's questions never cease to amaze me. "Are they identical?" "Are they twins?" (even when they were infants) "Did you have them naturally?" "Are you the mother?"

Because of my strain on managing my time well, I generally give short answers. "Yes" and "no" seem to be my favorite. And above all, I don't stop. I keep walking.

I know that girls speech generally develops faster than boys. And Adam is probably fine. I have three son's that have speech therapy, that the state pays for through "Early Intervention." You might consider eliminating/reducing Adam's dummy, since dummies impede speech, as do bottles and certain sippy cups. I had to switch to straw sippy cups, such as http://www.playtexbaby.com/cupsandmealtime/products/stage4.asp
The straws work and strengthen the oral motor muscles. Toddlers with speech problems tend to leave their mouth open and drool, because it's too tiring for them to keep their mouth closed and keep the drool in.

I'm 33 years old and have a twin brother. I still get (otherwise intelligent) people asking me if we're identical, even after I've made it clear that my twin is male and, well, I'm not...which should be obvious. Most people hit their head and say, "D'oh!" ala Homer Simpson when they realise their mistake (i.e stupidity).
By the way, I laughed out loud when I read the part about Kate looking like your fertility specialist. I often look at my 2 year old daughter (IVF) and wonder if there was an egg mix-up at the clinic. She's the spitting image of her daddy, but the only thing she got from me was her bad temper.
I think it's good that you're not calling Adam and Kate 'the twins' and that you think of them more as siblings. My mum never put us in the same class at school so that we could develop our own friendships, and I really appreciate that.

Your last paragraph... PERFECT!

I always wanted to be the mother who never lost her temper and had perfectly-behaved children. It took me almost 2 years to realize there is no such thing as a perfect mom or the perfect children. You just have to do the best you can with each other and hope your kid(s) survives until they can make it on their own!

P.S. I agree with the comment that children are cute so we won't kill them... And if we knew the horrors to come, we would probably swallow them at birth, which is why Mother Nature blessed most mothers with short-term memories!

I love the last para too! I used to think parents that let their kids run amok were anti-social and negligent. Now I think "Oh good, they're busy, I can get this done". Doesn't extend to breaking things or being completely annoying to the public of course, but otherwise it's pretty much fair game.

I think with the identical thing it's just that when you say "tiwns" 2 silly questions come up in people's minds. 1) Were they IVF? and 2) Are they identical? If they feel compelled to make conversation, one of these questions just pops out without much thought. I really don't think people are thinking what identical means!!

Your kids are gorgeous, and it must be amazing them interact (except for the fighting thing...but I guess if they're fighting it means they are close, right? Not off doing their own thing? Is that a positive??).

In defense of all genetics-ignorant people out there (somebody has to take their side, no?), I think maybe people don't so much think of identical twins as being literally identical, but more like *not* the twins that don't look alike.

Make sense? Let me try that again: I'm hypothesizing that most people think of twins as either
fraternal - not looking alike, or
identical - looking similar, but not literally identical.

I don't think the boy/girl thing occurs to most people outside the fertility clinic world. But I imagine it would get old really fast having to deal with the question regularly.

2nd time posting. I am an identical twin and just saw a show on National Geographic channel, In the womb, Multiples. It is rar but you CAN have different sex identicals. I was floored. They explaned it as the before the split it was an XXY and after the split became one XX and one XY. Who would've known/
Love your blog and you have a beautiful family!!!

Another thing most people dont realize is for those easy to conceive babies that Frat twins are gentetic, not identical. Its genetic if you drop two eggs not the egg splitting. I once took care of B/G that had shirts that said, No! We're not identical. Maybe you could get some of those when you know you are going to be around especially ignorant people. LOL!

Awwww, on the special twin thing.

My two favorite experiences as a mom was watching my boys together. They used to be so cute, sharing everything, pooling their money once they realized that's what their dad and I did, always making sure the each other got his fair share.

It's like nothing else, really.

Well, I have three of the little shits, and can tell you that as far as five years of age the cuteness/little-bastard-ness doesn't wear off even one little bit! Mine are soooo cute when the interact positively. The five-year-old comes home from school on the big yellow bus and the two-year-old waves their blankie like a semiphore and the one-year-old yells their version the kindergartener's one-syllable family nickname. It's like a celebrity coming home from war. Then the five-year-old pushes the one-year-old around on a riding toy (swooooon) and high-fives the two-year-old. But just as often the oldest is pushing the baby down because they think I'm not looking, or socking the two-year-old in the face because they aren't listening about using the video game unit. Ugh. Monsters. So cute, though, as are any siblings. The ones of mine who are little more than a year apart and sometimes mistaken for twins are so much alike in so many ways. So cute.

I also saw NG "In the Womb...Multiples" last night and was shocked to see that monozygotic twins can be of different sexes. The first thing I thought was "How on Earth did they find that out? and second was How often does THAT happen?" It must be like only 1 in a million. I learned recently that there is also a third kind of twin that they are discovering where the unfertilized egg splits right before fertilization, so the twins are more identical than your average fraternal twin, but don't have the exact dna due to different sperm.

All through my pregnancy the docs thought my boys could be identical due to their identical heart rates/size/ and sex. Also, the placentas were touching so their appeared to be only one. Now they don't look anything alike. D is so much bigger than N that people ask me how far apart they are in age now instead of "Are they twins?" (they must be thinking "That wacka-doodle must have gotten knocked up the day she got out of the hospital, WTF was she thinking?") When I tell them "One minute apart" They look at me like I'm high on something.

I've had a few twin moments, and it almost makes the newborn stage fade into memory...almost. :)

I hope you don't get "how do you tell them apart?". We still get that occasionally, and I am never quite sure how I should respond. Do you think, "um, I LOOK at them" sounds rude?

We always get a good chuckle out of that one!:)

I agree with everything you just said (including me telling them 1200 times a day that I can't understand a word they are saying with that pacifier in their mouth).

At first I couldn't believe I was tricked into having two at once, and I had crazy singleton envy.

Now I feel lucky. A lot of my friends are having their second kids and I am so glad I don't ever have to be pregnant again.

aaahh... so we live and learn... ignoring people's dirty looks and questioning glances when we turn a blind eye to our chidlren's little foibles. i prefer to think of it as "picking my battles".
as for the "are they identical" thing... i honestly cannot believe people still do that when they LOOK so obviously different!!

I swear people ask that question because they don't know what else to ask. I am also a twin, and even though we look nothing alike, people would ask if we were identical. Good Lord, do we LOOK identical???? :)

But, yeah, it's even funnier with a boy/girl twin set. I REALLY wish I had seen that NG show!!!


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