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Only thing better than a new grandchild: two

We had pretty much resigned ourselves to having no grandchildren. Friends and classmates our age had “grands” galore; some who married early even had great-grandchildren.

When the inevitable photo-passing and bragging sessions occurred, we were relegated to the role of observers, not participants.

Daughter Lisa took her time about marrying, and after a few years went by, we'd about given up on a grandchild. Then darling Presley came along to brighten our lives. She has just turned eight, and we've had many a delightful hour with her.

There followed miscarriages and scares and we figured Pres was it, there'd be no more. When we'd about given up, along came Audrey. We recently found a tee shirt for her that warns, “Danger — I'm two!” Need I say more?

Another miscarriage, and again we figured that was it. They thought that was it. And weren't we all surprised when we learned there was to be not just one more, but two!

Thankfully, all went well, and twins Samantha Erin and Sydney Elise, born March 7, doubled our grandchild contingent overnight. We're still awaiting to hear from tests to determine if they're identical or fraternal. Matters not — we have two more darling girls to love.

Papa Bob, who was getting acclimated to life in a house with three females, now has to cope with being outnumbered five to one. What a contest of wills (and bathroom space) that's going to be. He won't stand a chance!

Statistics are that in the U.S. twin births will occur about 12 times out of 1,000, and two-thirds of those will be fraternal.

Identical twins, the experts say, are a completely random occurrence, unrelated to whether there are twins on one's family tree. The tendency toward fraternal twins, however, can run in families, but twinning is determined by the mother, not the father. The likelihood of twins increases with the age of the mother and number of pregnancies.

There are twins scattered back through my wife's side of the family, so in this case statistics and trends seem to have been borne out.

The joy of grandchildren, our friends have laughingly told us, is that “You can love them and then send them home — no 2 a.m. feedings, no diaper-changing.” Unfortunately, ours are 150 miles away, so overexposure isn't a problem.

Son Steve, who made a career of working his way through the catalog at Mississippi State University before opting for law school so he could extend his academic experience, married even later than our daughter, and his wife, Liz, then was nose-to-the-grindstone to get her Ph.D. in cellular biology (a Nobel's just a matter of time, we figure). When the subject of children has come up, Steve laughs that he's “never going to reproduce,” to which my joshing rejoinder has been “and the world is grateful — I'm not sure it needs another perpetual student.”

While we can hope they will change their minds, we nonetheless are delighted to now have four darling girls to love, and we've become adept at the art of grandparental bragging.

Wanna see some photos?

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