You may see a lot of things when you look at this picture. The constant mess of our playroom, for instance. The genius architecture of the twins’ Lego tower. The fact that Sam is wearing Princess dress-up shoes–and not even in a “Hey! Look at me, Mom! I’m wearing Princess dress-up shoes! This is crazy!” No, he’s just wearing them. Because he has two sisters so Princess dress-up shoes are everywhere. And they’re often his footwear of choice.
What do I see in this picture? A memory I hope to never forget. Sam and Ellie are playing house. They actually play house most of their waking hours. Which probably tells you that we’re doing a miserable job at following the popular advice that twins should spend periods of time separated for independent play. No way. Not in our house. I changed too many tandem poopy diapers, held both of them screaming in each of my ears for too many hours to not enjoy the fact that they love to play together.
Sam is Daddy, Ellie’s Mommy, and I’m their daughter, Cathy. And the game goes on. Constantly. In the playroom, they fix me lunch in their kitchen, drive me to school and to the doctor. The only reason we go to the doctor is so that he can give me a shot, and I can break into fake sobs, which they have to comfort. They love it. In the grocery store, they sit in their car-cart and chat about what to buy. Monday at the store, Sam began shaking the cart and called to me: “Hey! Our kid is being wild in here!” It gets a little awkward in the car because I’m driving, yet Sam wants to pretend he’s Daddy and driving me places. Clearly the configuration dries up a lot of potential plots. The richest story lines take place outside where their imaginations can roam as wide as the outdoors: births of new children take place in the backyard or cul-da-sac, birthday parties, and princess/prince balls–all fantasies that Ellie is partial to.
Catie went through this House stage too, but I can’t remember it. And so, for Sam and Ellie, I have this picture. If I don’t remember one minute of these years, I can always look back on this photograph and think…”why in the HECK is Sam wearing Princess heels?!”

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