Friday Ramblings

On Oliver…
Ugh. Oliver is not sleeping well. Still. It’s been months now of waking several times a night but for the last week it’s been even more often, sometimes every 1/2 hour! It’s so hard and frustrating and I’m exhausted but I remember going through a similar phase with Molly. She came out of it, so I have to be confident that he will too.

On Molly…
Molly is in a curious phase this week. She’s into everything that she shouldn’t be and I’m trying very hard to keep my patience! Yesterday she discovered my mascara and concealer. Sigh. I’m sure that won’t be the last time she’s into my make up.
In other news, she’s done very well on the potty this week, no accidents!

On Winter…
So far winter has been lacklustre. It’s disappointing! I was relying on snow to take the kids out and play. Playing outside with no snow is no fun. Plus since Oliver isn’t walking yet, it’s harder to just plop him on the ground without snow. But yesterday we had a few inches! I’m hoping it’s here to stay.

On Me…
I’m having an ultrasound today to have a couple of lumps I found on my side and back examined. My doctor says she’s 99% sure they’re just fat deposits that are common as you get older, but she’s a better safe then sorry sort, so more exams are needed. It’s a bit nerve wrecking, I have to say. One can’t help but Google the possibilities. Fingers crossed it goes well! I’ll have a follow up next week with my doc. I hate waiting!!

On Bling…
My mom passed along some family jewelry to me this week. It’s all costume jewelry, so holds very little monetary value. But I absolutely love all the pieces and can’t wait to wear them! I’ve done a little research and have identified the designers.

This first set is by Sherman Jewelers, a Montreal based company, one of the top costume jewelry designers in Canada that opened in the late 1940’s.

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This next necklace was my grandmother’s and is from Bond Boyd, another well known Canadian Jeweller (they’re still around but focus on corporate jewelry now). The pin and earrings in the next image are from the same company (the pin was my grandma’s and my mom bought the earrings to match).

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And this last set are from an American company, Trifari. The bracelet appears to be a different design then the necklace and earrings but they compliment each other.

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And that’s my ramblings for this week! Happy Friday all!!

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The Art of Potty Training

Bah! I’m kidding. As if there’s an art. I know there are gads of books and suggestions for how to go about doing it but to be honest I haven’t read a thing about it! We’ve gone with our instincts and trusted Molly to lead the way.
We really began over a year ago, when she started wanting to sit on the toilet fully clothed. Gradually she wanted to sit without clothes and very occasionally she would pee. But it was so random we didn’t attempt underwear. By that point Oliver had arrived and there was no way in Hades I had the inclination to continue the training process, so we didn’t encourage her. That is until they started suggesting it at daycare. Last summer they asked us to send along numerous changes of clothes and they worked with her on it there. Which of course translated to her wanting to do it at home.
Because Oliver was so little, I was resistant to the idea. Diapers were so easy! No accidents, LESS LAUNDRY! And less freaking time. I didn’t want to drop what I was doing and take her to the bathroom only to have her dilly dally on the toilet (with no results) and then linger to wash her hands. I had no patience, so A often ended up being the point person for that.
However as things got easier with the baby, so did my attitude about it. I also really had no choice. As the fall wore on, she more and more started asking to wear underwear. She would insist on using the potty even if she had a diaper on and, this is a key point, she started doing #2 on the toilet.

Side note: here’s where I admit that if she has any #2 accidents, I throw out the dirty undies. I’m just. Not. Going. There. We have plenty of undies to last us a good long time 🙂

We’re now at the point where she will go all day, nap included, in underwear and have no accidents. Her daycare actually sent home her diaper stash last week! They don’t put her in diapers at all there anymore. Some days at home with me she’ll request a diaper and I won’t deny her. We’re still in diapers at night, as she still wakes up wet in the morning.
But, and this is huge, we’ve taken her out shopping without a diaper on and haven’t had any accidents! She’s pretty good about asking to go when we’re out and about and thankfully we’ve always been in a place that’s had a washroom.

It’s great not having to change, and buy, as many diapers, but the real joy I’m feeling is in watching her grow into such a big girl thing. My baby girl isn’t a baby any more and I couldn’t be more proud of the little girl she’s becoming.

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Breastfeeding 2.0

I’ve been seeing a lot of posts about weaning around the blogosphere lately and it has me thinking about my own breastfeeding relationships with my children.

I loved nursing Molly, despite a somewhat rocky start (she had a shallow latch). But once we got the swing of things, it was great! She was a huge fan of the boob, needing it not just for food but for comfort and sleep as well. Baby tired? Boob. Baby bump her head? Boob. Baby sick? Boob. There were the moments of annoyance of course, where she would pull off and on, kick me and pick at me but nothing insurmountable. I nursed her until she was 16 months. The weaning process was gradual, starting when I went back to work three days a week when she was a year old. I found out I was pregnant the week before I started work and not only was I not interested in tandem nursing, but I wanted a bit of a break before committing to it for a other year and a half or more, so I’m happy things started winding down when they did.

Things are a bit different with Oliver. Yes, I still love nursing for the ease and convenience but the first few months with him were very difficult as we struggled with both my fast flow and his reflux. He would cry in frustration and in pain. As a result, Oliver isn’t as attached as much as Molly was. He no longer has the reflux issues and my flow finally regulated but he doesn’t seek my breast for comfort and only half the time will he nurse to sleep. At four months he started refusing the right breast altogether. I tried and tried for another few to get him to nurse and would pump to keep my supply up on that side, but finally gave up just before Christmas. I’m lopsided now but at least there’s no upset anymore. And then there’s the dairy. Part of his reflux and gas problem was a dairy intolerance, so on Canada Day I began a dairy free diet, as much as possible. And dammit, it worked. It’s like knowing you lose weight by ditching all the yummy but bad for you foods. Not fair! But my sanity and my little boys happiness was worth it! I noticed a difference right away.

I think the key difference between breastfeeding Molly and Oliver is my feelings on it. Oliver was 10 months yesterday, which means that between him and Molly, I’ve been nursing for 26 months. I’m ready to be done. If we stopped tomorrow I’d be sad but happy to have my boobs back. Because of our rocky start I don’t seem to have the emotional attachment like I did with Molly. However, my beliefs regarding nursing keep me from initiating the weaning process myself:

I still believe in nursing on demand.

I still believe in night feedings at this age, even when people say babies ‘shouldn’t’ need it (who’s to say if my baby is hungry other than my baby).

I still believe it’s the best nutrition for him for another few months at least.

I still believe it’s the best choice for us.

And because of those beliefs I’m hoping for a similar weaning process that Molly had. Gradual and completely his decision. Don’t offer, don’t refuse, that will be my motto soon.

Happy nursing!

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Friday Ramblings

It’s been FOREVER since I’ve done a Friday Ramblings. I hope to do a decent catch up post soon but in the meantime…

On Oliver…
Our little mister continues to wake several times in the night. Sometimes I’m fine with it, sometimes I’m not. But my core beliefs about sleep training (not until he’s over a year) and night weaning (I won’t deny breastfeeding if that’s what he wants) prevent me from doing much about it. I just have to be patient and remember it doesn’t last forever! Thankfully he’s a pretty good napper and both kids will nap at the same time, giving me time to nap as well if I need it.
Otherwise he’s great! Almost 10 months, 24 lbs, babbling and He’s starting to cruise around holding onto furniture. I really hope he walks before I go back to work!!

On Molly…
Molly will be 2.5 next month and we are continually astonished by her development. She’s less baby now and more little girl. This time next year we’ll be registering her for junior kindergarten!
We’ve been more vigilant about potty training, with great success! The key for us was letting her take the lead. If she wants underwear, she gets underwear. If she wants a diaper, she can wear a diaper. Just this week though her daycare sent home her diaper stash. No more diapers there!
I’m still in no rush. Sometimes it’s easier for her to have a diaper on. Plus, less laundry for me if there are accidents (though I admit to tossing really dirty undies. Who wants to deal with those?).

On Me…
I’m tired. But I recently had confirmed (I’d suspected) that I have really low iron, so that’s part of what’s contributing to my fatigue. I’ve been taking a gentle iron supplement and I seem to be a bit perkier. Enough so that I’ve started working out again! We unearthed my elliptical trainer from the basement storage and moved it to our room. I’m using it when I can, even if for just 10 minutes.
I start back to work in two months and the kids start day care before that three days a week at the beginning of March…I’m going to get a bit of a vacation! I’m looking forward to going to work but am also feeling nervous about leaving Oliver. I’m going to be doing a three day a week work schedule though, so I’ll still have a couple of days with my babies 🙂

On Date Nights…
With Oliver on solids now, his nursing schedule has become fairly predictable which is awesome because it’s giving us a chance to have much needed date nights! For my birthday we went out to dinner, just the two of us. We were back in time to put the kids to bed.
On A’s birthday a week later, we had a double date with BFF B and her hubby. This time my parents handled bedtime while we had a great dinner and went glow-in-the-dark mini-putting! Such fun!
It’s amazing to be at that point again and great to have time out sans children. We don’t need that sort of thing often, but it’s nice to have the option.

On Instagram…
You guys, I’m not sure how I haven’t jumped on the Instagram bandwagon sooner. I love it! You can follow me via the link to the right!

Finally, here are my babies! They are just the best!

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Happy New Year!

2014 brought a lot of change to our family. A was let go from his job in January; Oliver was born in March and we became a family of four; A’s car died and we decided to make it work with only one vehicle; A thankfully started a new job in September and at that point I became a stay at home mom to two kids (temporarily. I will be going back to work in March when my year of maternity leave isfinished).
Whew. There were highs and lows but we got through it together and are stronger for it. Still, we’re glad to see 2014 behind us.
2015 has started off as it does every year: with my birthday. It’s today! I’m 37 and can’t believe I’m that much closer to 40! It was pretty much a day as any other, just with gifts and cupcakes 🙂 I’m a lucky girl!
I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season! Back to normal tomorrow!

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Happy Holidays!

I’m a horrible blogger. As much as I want to be here in this space, at the moment my brain can’t seem to find the energy to complete a post, let alone make said post make sense. Lack of sleep (teething is kicking our butts) and looking after two kids is the culprit there.
So I’m going to take this rare opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! I’ll be back in January, hopefully refreshed in mind and body 🙂

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Monday

6am – A’s alarm goes off. Miraculously, the kids are still asleep. Oliver was up a lot in the night (last time at 4:30; teething has him restless) and I’m happy for the ‘sleep in’.

6:05 – A hops in the shower and I go back to sleep.

6:25 – A comes to kiss me and I inform him I’ll forgo showering and sleep until the kids get up. Cue the baby.

6:30 – A takes the baby downstairs and I gradually wake up. I hear Molly stirring and go to let her out. I get dressed and head downstairs.

6:30-7 – breakfast! Coconut oil and honey toast for me, honey and butter toast for Molly and buttered toast fingers for Oliver. He’s not a big morning eater. We all share a banana. Oh and I had a coffee. I never forget my coffee.

7am – A leaves for work. “I love you too daddy” says Molly.

7-7:30 – the kids play with me

7:30 – we head upstairs to get dressed. I put away laundry and try to tidy up Molly’s room while the kids play

8:05 – Oliver is showing signs he’s hungry and tired. I bribe Molly with Dora the Explorer and she happily goes off downstairs so I can nurse the baby to sleep. You do what you do to get through!

8:10 – I remember to text my sister not to call as she usually does around 8:20 on her way to work. Sometimes I forget and Molly comes running with the phone for me

8:20 – baby asleep

8:30-9:30 – I tidy the kitchen and prep lunch (tuna sandwiches) and dinner (crock pot chilli) while Molly play with Pom poms, tissue paper and glue (administered by me). We do some very serious work on the Lego railroad and putter with various toys.

9:30am – Monday is Molly’s Terrific Twos class at the local recreation centre, so I wake Oliver (or more specifically Molly does; poor guy never saw it coming) and we get ourselves ready to walk over.

9:45 – leave to walk over to the complex. It’s a rainy day here so I put the rain cover over the double stroller (side note: we bought a Peg Perego Aria double stroller at a consignment shop for $100 when I was watching my nephew. The rain cover designed by Peg Perego for this stroller is $80!! Jolly Jumper sells one that fits for $25. Guess which one I bought).

9:55 – Arrive at the complex.

10am – the door opens to the preschool room and we’re invited in. Molly’s been crying the last few times I left her but today there were only a few sniffles! I’m so proud of her.

10-11:15 – Oliver and I wait in the lobby. There’s a TV with a 24 hour news channel on, a fire place and comfy benches. I kick myself for forgetting to bring a coffee. But at least I remembered Mum Mums for Oliver. Note to self: if I ever run out of glue, Mum Mums are a great alternative! They have sticking power!

11:15 – door opens to the room again (it’s locked from the outside) and I go in to get my girl. She’s so happy to see us and excitedly shows me the paper jack o lantern she made

11:25 – we leave to walk home. Molly decides to walk

11:35 – still walking

11:40 – still walking

11:42 – I finally coerce her into getting in the stroller and I speed walk the last few minutes. I’m thankful I prepped the tuna before we left!

11:55 – settle down for lunch. Tuna sandwich, a yogurt tube and some pear for Molly. Wedges of pear and apricot yogurt for Oliver and a tuna sandwich (with liquid smoke added, yum!) for me. I also ate the skins from the baby’s pear.

12:30 – we head upstairs for nap. Molly starts acting up, pulling down her table lamp and trying to bite her brother. I lost my cool I’m sorry to say and yelled at her. It doesn’t happen often and I feel bad but it is what it is.

12:45 – we have a bit of back and forth with me leaving and coming back (I sit on her bed and nurse the baby to sleep while she falls asleep but will only stay sitting if she’s laying down. I leave if she gets up) but she and the baby are finally out.

12:46 – Yahoo!!!

12:47 – I make a coffee, grab some roasted cashews and head downstairs. There are a zillion chores to do but I want some me time.

1-2:30 – I get my geek on and play World of Warcraft. I’m just a beginner. I’ve been playing with A and enjoy it! It’s nice to do something with him and talk to him about. I was on my own today, trying to hone my skills.

2:30 – both kids are up a little sooner than I’d like. Now what to do for the next few hours…

2:35 – I call my mom and see what she’s up to. I suggest a trip to the store and she agrees. She’ll be over soon!

2:35-? – I didn’t notice what time my mom arrived but until then we played and I cleaned the kitchen. It’s never ending!

? – we head to Walmart. I prefer Target but A requested some buns he found at Walmart once so there we went. I didn’t end up finding them but picked up some bananas, cereal, ketchup, baby bath soap, Camilia, and bleach (the last of which was used the night before to clean the tub. There was an, um, accident).

4:15 – back home!

4:30 – Oliver is sleepy so I bribe Molly with Dora again and throw in some raisins for good measure.

4:50 – he had a good deed but didn’t go to sleep. The window is now closed since I can’t have him going to sleep too close to bedtime. We head back downstairs.

5pm – I do some more dinner prep (add tomato paste and rice to the chilli to thicken it, grate cheese) and play with the kids.

5:20 – I start this post

5:50 – A is home!! Molly runs to the door and screams “Daddy I miss you!” Cutest. Thing. Ever.

6pm – thanks to Mr Crock Pot, dinner is all ready and we sit down to eat. We all have chilli, including Molly. Oliver has steamed carrot sticks, some grated cheese (I’m trying him on dairy), some oatmeal cereal and some Baby Gourmet organic Juicy Pears and Leafy Greens purée.

6:25 – Oliver is done and super tired. I bring him up for a bath.

6:25-6:50 – bath and bedtime prep for both kids. Oliver is too tired for story so I give him the Camilia (fingers crossed it works! His second tooth is being stubborn – did I mention he got his first one Thanksgiving weekend? – and though he’s not screaming in pain, he is having restless sleep and is awake a lot in the night. A lot a lot. I’m pooped.).

6:50 – night nights are said, kisses are given and I leave A to get Molly to bed.

And here I sit now at…7:26pm. He’s finished nursing and is asleep on my nursing pillow. I’ll move him to his crib soon but am enjoying the quiet. I can hear A settling Molly still, so he’s not ready to finish our movie (we started the new Transformers last night). I’ll head down to do the dishes in a few minutes.
That’s Monday folks. I’m sure I missed some things. But there’s never a dull moment!

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Another Kind of Remembrance Day

I was tidying up the other day and noticed the little crystal butterfly that sits on our fireplace mantle had toppled over. It’s not currently in plain sight, with a basket of wipes and diapers sitting in front of it, put up there so Molly doesn’t use them on her babies and buddies. Though I didn’t give it much thought, I made sure to tip it upright, because it holds a special place in my heart. My husband bought it for us to remember the baby we lost.

My miscarriage no longer holds the title of Most Traumatic Event in my life. That honour now goes to when Molly had her febrile seizure almost a year ago. The thought of it sends me into panic mode and I want to breakdown and cry. Thinking of losing our baby no longer does that to me but it’s not something I will ever forget.
Though I wouldn’t say I’m healed (I don’t think that a loss like that can ever completely heal), it definitely doesn’t impact me as it did once. Time, I guess, is a factor. And making it through two subsequent pregnancies without incident helped. But the clincher is probably knowing we aren’t having any more babies. My mind can now be at rest and not worry about something happening again. With both Molly and Oliver I didn’t completely believe they were safe until they were on my arms.

Today is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. I’m thinking of those of you who I know have experienced loss and of those of you who have chosen to remain silent. Always know, you are not alone.

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