Sunday, November 30, 2014

Nursing while 35 Weeks Pregnant

I fear that our nursing relationship has come to an end. For the past few days, M has been nursing for about 2  minutes, unlatching, then informing me that "Milky time is broken".

My nipples are not complaining. They are sore, she bites them, and the nursing itself is not a comfortable thing. I have to keep reminding her to be gentle.

My heart is breaking a little bit.

It has been our ritual to lay in bed every morning and cuddle for 15 minutes while she nurses and snuggles, and we both give and get lots and lots of hugs and kisses.

It's our bonding time.

And while I feared that it might end once the new baby is born, it is pretty hard to take before the new baby has even come.

Also, it seems odd that I would dry up at 35 weeks... if anything, I thought more milk would be coming in at this point.

Maybe it tastes funny, or maybe it is my body getting ready to push this new one out.

Whatever it is, I am very sad to say goodbye to nursing my little toddler. But I made it to two years, exactly what the WHO recommends. And though I know she doesn't need it anymore, and I know it is one step to her becoming more independent, it still seems much more difficult for Mommy than for Child.

Did any of you have any experience drying up at 35 weeks pregnant? I'm going to ask my midwife on Wednesday to see if it is normal...

Friday, November 21, 2014

Giveaway! Modern Kids Design Holiday Giveaway

What do we do with toddlers when we have a new baby to take care of??? I vote for art projects! This set looks absolutely fantastic, and I'm sure it will keep your little one occupied for hours. Good luck, I hope one of my readers wins!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Giving Birth at the Toronto Birth Centre

This pregnancy, I am planning to give birth at the  Toronto Birth Centre. If you haven't seen the website, or haven't even heard of it, I urge you to check it out. Apparently it cost 6 million dollars to build, which means that no expense was spared - and it shows!!! The place is absolutely amazing and beautiful. I am so excited to give birth there, it is like an upscale hotel with giant birthing tubs and fireplaces in each room.

Also, and this is a biggy, if I give birth there instead of at home, there will be minimal cleanup involved. Count me in!

The other thing about giving birth at the centre is how family friendly it is. Anyone is welcome to be at the birth with you, it has beautiful waiting rooms, and even a kitchen if you have a hankering for chocolate mouse or your mother-in-law's nut cake at a critical moment during labor or delivery. Also, this means that my daughter can be there playing in the waiting room if I decide she doesn't need to witness the birth.

I actually haven't decided if she will be there at the delivery. A lot depends on timing. If I'm birthing this tiny beast in the middle of the night, we will let little M sleep, oblivious, in her crib. If it is during the day then potentially she will be there.

People have been asking me about my birth plan. This time, I'm really not sure. I keep changing my mind, which is why no birth plan has been written down. I think one reason is because I really feel like I'll give birth any day now. The other thing is that I'm still not done school, so that is kind of taking priority over all thinking matters.

Anyways, did you give birth at a birth centre? How was your experience? And did you let your toddler watch? I'd like some feedback about that because I'm still not sure...

Thursday, November 6, 2014

[Giveaway] BayB Brand Bean Bag Giveaway!

Who doesn't need a place to put their little baby before they start walking?? And where better than a beanbag chair?? Maybe you can get one for free!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Pregnant Pumpkin

I am done. Fully cooked. Finished. Tired of the pressure on my pubic bone. Tired of even thinking about standing up. Being 31 weeks pregnant is really sucking all of the life out of me. Or maybe it's being pregnant, working full time, finishing school, and raising an energetic toddler. Who knows? All I want to do is sit down with my feet up. And sob.
Instead, I'll sit down with my feet up and vomit my feelings into this blog. And be really happy that my husband is cleaning up the dining room, where we carved a pumpkin tonight.
I'm looking forward to Halloween tomorrow. I figure that trick or treating will go one of two ways: 1) M will refuse to go to anyone's house and we will drag a crying baby to a few of our neighbours... or 2) M will love trick or treating so much we will end up being out for hours. My pregnancy cravings hope for option 2, the glucose that shows up periodically in my urine hopes for option 1. We will see what happens tomorrow.
All right, the laundry is calling, but I am not listening. I think I'll turn in for an early sleep tonight and hope that work isn't too bad tomorrow. Should I wear my costume to work, do you think??
One good thing about pregnancy - cheap n easy costume!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Halloween is Coming

Who needs candy when I fit in the pumpkin??  (M is wearing her favourite Hanna Andersson Pyjamas)

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Giveaway! Free Ellybo Organic Plush Toy

In honour of all things newborn, I'd like to put this giveaway on my page. Wouldn't it be the cutest little thing for a newborn? I love the gender neutral colours, and the fact that it's organic. Good luck and I hope you win!!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Cute Things my Toddler Says

Muriel is sporting vintage Vuarnet shades.

I thought I should document this stuff now, before I forget just how adorable she was!

She asks to have more "sauce" on her toothbrush.

She often gets on her toy horse and says "Bye Guys". When we ask her where she's going she answers "To buy Yayas" (her word for raisins).

Her stuffed rabbit is named "Hose".

Her other stuffed rabbit is named "Hosa".  You face her wrath if you mix them up.

If she hears something strange she says "What's that noise?" Then she'll answer herself, "Raccoons".

If you ask her how much anything costs she'll tell you "Two dollars!"

Usually if you ask her what she wants for dinner she will answer "Pasta and chicken". The other day at daycare she wanted "Cheerios and milk". When I told her that she couldn't have cheerios, she decided she wanted "Beef". So we went to the butcher.

She loves her Grandad so much that she screams his name whenever we video chat with Grandma. Then when he comes on, she becomes a silly goose and does all kinds of crazy dancing and making horse noises.

She demands to watch show tunes on my computer. And cries if denied. Her favourite is "Who am I" from Les Miz.

She likes big trucks and machinery, especially backhoes. She calls them "backhomes". Grandad has one, and when he brought it out for her she was absolutely terrified of it. I guess she only likes them from a distance.

I will add more as I think of them. What adorable things does your child say?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Haven't blogged in a while... time for an update!

Well, I haven't been here for a while. I blame:
1)swollen feet
2)extreme exhaustion
3)rampant toddler
4)40 pound weight gain
5)being very, very hangry

Sound familiar? Yes, yes I'm pregnant. 7 months down, 2 to go.

Can I do it? Only time will tell.

I'll try to be more on top of things around here, too.

As for cloth diapering, little M is potty trained! Hurrah!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Long Break

I know I know, it's been a pretty long time since I blogged.

What can I say? I'm lazy. And have been tired. Not that blogging takes a lot of time, or even a lot out of a person.

Sometimes we all need a break.

Or maybe we have what I'll call "blogging inertia". I also get this with emails.

So I'm sorry.

I'll try harder next time!!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Thank you!

To all of the tireless daycare workers who look after our children while we make a living. To all of those warm women, tireless men who make sure our children are safe while we can't be there. To all of those people who teach our children to play, to laugh, and to love. Thank you.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The Loss of a Loved One

By loss, I mean lost. And by a loved one, I mean little M's Cabbage Patch doll. Affectionately referred to as "baby" (or in M speak "babieees"), we have lost you to the sidewalk somewhere between our house and Chester. Mom actually thought she lost you once before, but M had just hidden you in the pantry. Then Mom did lose you on the walk from daycare to home, but Dad found you laying on the sidewalk, and rescued you with all the valour of a knight in shining armour. Then, last Sunday, Dad lost you for good. At some point during the walk, you were ejected from the stroller and nobody noticed. Dad kept walking. M didn't make a peep. And baby lay on the ground, content, probably taking a nap. Dad was home before he noticed, and the walk was way too long, and we had far too many things to do to retrace his steps.

Full of guilt and doubts about ourselves as good parents, we bought M a new baby. With a stroller and high chair so that hopefully M wouldn't notice that the new baby was not the same as the old baby, even though the new one wasn't a Cabbage Patch doll. 

M noticed, but didn't seem to mind. Thank goodness. 

But now we have to hide the iPhone so she won't see pictures like the one below, and demand her babieeees back. 

Have you ever lost your child's favourite plaything? Did everything turn out ok??

Bye bye, little doll, I hope another child has found you and will love you forever.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Lil' Helper Cloth Diaper Review

Tooling around the web, as I am wont to do, I came across Lil' Helper cloth diapers. I was excited. Not only are they a Canadian company, but they are from Toronto! Also, they were selling a trial diaper for 30% off an no shipping. How on earth could I pass up a deal like that? I really am a sucker for free shipping. A big old sucker. Give me free shipping, I'll probably buy your diaper.

Sorry. Sidetracked. By suckers.

It arrived vacuum packed with a bag of mint tea! Nice!
You get to pick your top three colours, so I went gender neutral. I was pleased to get the chocolate brown diaper - I don't have any in this colour yet. I also chose the charcoal diapers, because again, I don't have any like this. The diapers are made in China, but the package insert reads that they are designed in Canada. The feel of the diapers is great - high quality with well fitting and nicely designed leg elastics. I also like the charcoal - it dries fast and feels very soft.

M likes them a lot! (As does Moz in the background)
The diaper arrived with 2 inserts - of two different sizes. That makes the diaper very customizable, so you will be sure not to get any leaks! (We definitely haven't!).

Perfect fit! Allows her cute little belly to hang over.
All in all, I do like this diaper. It is well fitted without feeling bulky. If I didn't have so many other diapers, I would buy several more of these for my stash.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Ill Prepared Mommy Tip #2

Plop a diaper in and you are good to go!
Forgot the diaper bag? Left it in the car? Don't feel like bringing it on a short jaunt? Forgot the diaper bag again? (so guilty of that one). For my second ill prepared mommy tip, I advise you to put a diaper in your regular purse. Heck, put one in all your purses. Then you will never be without one if your little one poops at the park, grocery store, mall, etc. You can always use wet paper towel in the bathroom to wipe, so don't clog up your purse with the unnecessary. One diaper will do in a pinch!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Out on the Town!

M is visiting a random neighbour in a Gap coat and an iPlay hat.
The best part?? It isn't our house!!!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Last Few Weeks of Lasts

Now that baby-making has started in earnest, I've started to do things that I normally wouldn't do, knowing that in a few weeks, I might not be able to.

Like drinking. Vodka Mudshake anyone? I'm downing them like they're going out of style (OK, one a night is all I can handle), but I know that it might be at least a year before I can have even a little sip again. So I am enjoying them. Even on week nights. So there.

Also. Caffeine. Now that I've rediscovered it, I'm downing black tea with a vengeance. It tastes oh so much better than decaf. And decaf coffee really is minging. And I know it's all I'll get once there's a bun in the over. So I go about my days wired, my evenings tipsy. It's all good, right?

Did I mention deli meat? I go by Subway salivating for a cold cut combo. And I get one. In fact, I remember that being one of my first meals after I gave birth. There is something about not being able to have something that makes you want it so bad. I haven't wanted cold cuts for a long time, but thinking about not being able to have them makes me want to start hoarding ham. Mmmmm. Ham.

Late night television. Early pregnancy is a time of extreme tiredness. So that means TV will be a luxury I won't likely be able to afford. So I'm getting in as much as I can. Overdosing, so to speak, so I'll be sick of it and be ok with falling asleep at 7:30pm every night.

Did I miss anything? Rare juicy steak?

Cross your fingers that next month I won't be able to have any of these things!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Time for Yourself

I find it to be really important to carve out time for myself. Yes, one could argue that I get time to myself when the little one is sleeping, but those moments are often filled with the rush to eat lunch, do laundry, load the dishwasher, etc. One needs to be able to take a step back and leave the house alone.

Let me tell you, it isn't easy.

Finally, thanks to the miracle that is my husband, I now have Sunday mornings all to myself. He is in charge of little M, and I am free to go out to do whatever it is I please. Which is, at the moment, a yoga class. I found one just down the street that starts at 10:15 and has an amazing teacher. I'm sure I'll write the review for that studio soon (especially for the prenatal pilates class... here's hoping I can sign up next month ;)).

It feels like heaven to go there and not feel guilty, knowing that my child and my husband are having some amazing quality time together, while I have some amazing quality time with myself (and my girlfriend, who is also attending the class).

Now, all this freedom didn't come cheap. In exchange for having Sunday morning to myself, my husband now gets Saturday mornings to himself, and he plans to go for a long bike ride now that the weather is so much better. But... that is OK. I am willing to be a single parent for a few hours if he is. And who wouldn't want to spend time with this little monkey??


Monday, March 31, 2014

Sprouts Playground Toronto Review

We finally made it to Sprouts playground at Queen and Carlaw. It being so close, I really wonder what took us so long to get there. Super close, the first visit is free, and might I add, it is an amazing playground.

First of all, it is a very spacious and clean facility, with ample stroller parking indoors, and lots of hangers for coats. There is also plenty of space to put your shoes before heading in to the play area. Did I mention the first visit is free? Just fill in a bit of paperwork, and your child is off to burn copious amounts of energy.

Before getting to the playground, I also feel compelled to mention the free (yes, free!) hot beverage machine for the adults. Not just free coffee, but good coffee. They have a swanky starbucks machine that serves up caff, decaf, cocoa and tea for the (exhausted) adults. Plus they provide spill proof mugs to take with you into the playground. For the kids they have sippy cups in all kinds of adorable colours. M had a bit of an issue getting water out fast enough, so she lugged hers around with her all over the playground, taking a swig here and there.

The playground itself is filled with wooden structures, trampolines, Nook play mats, and Wesco rocking toys. There are several slides, and lots of structures to crawl through and around. Also, there were no shortage of kids to play with. We arrived at 9am on a Sunday and we weren't the only ones. M had a blast trying to hug many of them, and she particularly enjoyed trying to climb up the slides. We also let her slide down by herself for the first time. Adorable!

If you are in Toronto, and are on the fence about trying this place, I highly recommend getting off that fence and checking it out... your kids will love you for it!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

After Work - Coming Home to Chubby Arms

Lately, the best thing in life is leaving work, coming home, and cuddling with my chubby little toddler. Just seeing her little face light up in a huge shit-eating grin makes my day... and also makes my days at work seem a bit more bearable. 

This Banana-eating Monkey is wearing a Petit Bateau tank top over an American Apparel onesie
I really hope my days start to get better, because it sure sucks living for the evening/weekend. My family is lucky in that most of them love their jobs. I'm not sure how I got bypassed, but love is not a word I would use to describe how I feel about my occupation. I really need to get a place of contentment, because right now every morning a pit of dread lodges itself in my stomach. Which is why I carry around photos like the one above, to remind myself what, exactly, I'm working for. My little peach. Everything will be better soon, right?

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Nature Walks

 
M is finally at an age (and motor skill level) where we can take her outside and she can walk by herself.

And she loves it.

I have never seen her laugh so much... at the trees, the bushes, the snow, the wind. She is absolutely delighted.

She lays down face first on the sidewalk to feel how cold it is on her cheek. Then she rolls over to stare up at the blueness of the sky.

She likes to hunker down and tries to clean the sidewalk with her gloves.

She shrieks at any dog we see and waves to all passerby.

When we are on the main road, she looks up at me and asks hopefully for a "bus?" And if she's lucky, she sees one and the laughter starts all over again.

I wonder why we didn't do this sooner.

Then I remember: oh yeah, she couldn't walk... and it was 20 below and the streets were covered in snow and ice.

We have probably gone out in the stroller or in a carrier almost every day since she was born. But it really isn't the same as having the freedom to roam. It is one of the things that I am going to regret about raising my child in the city. For myself as a child, we had acres to run free and explore with nobody worrying about where we were or who we were talking to. Because we were in the backyard talking to each other, there was nobody else. In the big city, it is not that easy. We live on a busyish street and I don't see myself allowing M to roam free in our neighbourhood for a long while.

So I need to make sure that M gets plenty of opportunity to play in the great outdoors. And if that means I have to go camping and deal with icky bugs, well, I guess that is a sacrifice I'm going to have to make (but rest assured, I will pack that bug spray and probably end up sleeping in the car!!)




Friday, March 21, 2014

Charting while Breastfeeding

It's that time again, folks. Yes, I want to get pregnant. For the second, and last, time. My husband really doesn't want another child due to the excessive cost (see my daycare post).However, I want several. So we compromised, and will try for one more. And that trying starts next month. In preparation for this I have been diligently charting my temperatures to ensure that I am actually ovulating.

Warning: Taking your basal body temperature while still breastfeeding at night is very, very difficult.

To get an accurate temperature you have to have been asleep and laying down for at least 2 hours. If your child is anything like mine, there is no guarantee that this is going to happen. You also need to take your temperature at the same time every morning. Again, no guarantee when your little one is up at 4:30 one morning, 6:30 the next. and then 2:30 the one after that.

As you can see from my chart below, many of my temperatures are way out of whack, especially at the beginning of my cycle, when I knew that I wasn't ovulating. I find that checking my CM is a much better way to tell if ovulation is about to occur, and I have also stocked up on LH strips for next month, when we start trying in earnest.

Another caveat is that some months you may not ovulate, particularly if you are breastfeeding more than usual. Last month my body tried to ovulate several times, and I am still not convinced that I did. I had to do a lot of tweaking to my chart to get the crossed lines. Little M was sick one weekend and basically stayed latched for hours (ok, slight exaggeration, but you know what I mean), and I believe that this prevented my ovaries from actually releasing an egg. Not that it mattered that month, I guess I will never know. This month looks good, and I am trying to breastfeed slightly less often so that I can be sure of an ovulatory cycle.

I also realize that getting pregnant while breastfeeding might be a challenge. Last time I got pregnant instantly, but this time I might need to learn to be a bit more patient. Only time will tell!

Take a look at my chart below to see the wild ups and downs of my temperature taking while breastfeeding. Have you done it to any degree of success?? Any tips or tricks to share? Feel free to comment below.



My Ovulation Chart

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Messy Room, Clean Room

A house with a toddler: she doesn't know the meaning of the word "tidy" 
Length of time it will stay this clean: 3.2 seconds

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Moraki Cloth Diaper Review

M pleased to show off her belly button Moraki Cloth Diaper (and yes, that is my iPad she is stepping on...)
Moraki Cloth diapers rock!

First of all, the patterns are adorable. I got the hippie tie dye print, but they also have more traditional patterns (like elephants) as well as solids. You can also choose to get rainbow or heart snaps, if you are so inclined.

What I like the most about these diapers is the softness. The sewed in insert of the AIO is cotton/hemp (I haven't tried hemp, this is my first time and I like it!). It looks and feels so natural and absorbent. You want to have it against your skin and feel good about your baby having it against theirs.

There is also a pocket so that if you want to add extra absorbance, you can! Plus, the sewn in insert can be folded to provide more absorbance where you want it.

The diapers, like most that I have, are snap adjustable in the front. M is 23 pounds and we wear them unsnapped and they fit her great - no leaking.

The downside to these diapers is the price. At $27 a pop, plus shipping, I don't think I can afford to have more than one of them. They take a bit longer to dry, being quite thick and natural finer, so we don't get to wear them as often as I'd like. I do recommend getting them, however, if you have the budget and want natural fibres and made in the USA quality.


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 - Obsessed!!

I absolutely have to blog about this... I can't stop thinking about this flight and what happened to it. It is my google obsession. I have been poring over Tomnod's satellite images hoping to find the debris. Me and thousands of others, apparently.

How can something so big just disappear?

My work friend thinks it was scooped up by Aliens. He's travelling to Turkey this weekend and has hinted that he wouldn't mind too much if his flight was taken by aliens... to a place with beautiful weather and lots of delicious food. To be honest, if an Alien wanted to take me somewhere like that I'd go in a heartbeat...

All fun aside, I have a huge emotional reaction every time I think about what might have happened. I really don't think that anyone is alive. I think about the infants on the plane, how their lives are over before they've barely begun. I think about the parents on the plane whose children will forever live in a world without their parents. I think about all of the people left behind who won't have any closure until the mystery is solved.

I think that becoming a parent really changes one's perspective on life. I don't think I would feel this way if I didn't have children. I find myself worrying more about little M and hoping against hope that we won't have to live through a tragedy like this.

I feel for those families, and hope they find that plane soon.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Pura Kiki Stainless Steel Infant Bottle Giveaway!


Adorable colors! And they come with a cover as well!
Did you use a bottle to feed your child? If your child was anything like mine, you had to try several before they would actually feed from one. I went back to school (once a week) shortly after M was born, so my husband had to take care of her during those times. And she was so small that she needed to eat every few hours. So I pumped, he fed. And M resisted many a bottle. We tried several (including Pura Kiki) before she finally took the Medela bottle that had come with my pump. Of course. She screamingly refused all others. Prior to her birth, we had purchased several stainless steel bottles made by Pura. Called Pura Kiki, these bottles were BPA free and had no plastic components. I was sold. Also, they are amazingly adorable. I actually bought quite a few of them, and only ever ended up trying one. So I have an entire unused set left over that I thought I would give away to one lucky reader. They retail for $45 on Amazon, so they are a bit pricey. Good luck!!!

 Please enter below, and leave a comment:

Was your baby fussy like mine and would only take a certain bottle? Which one did they prefer?
Win Me!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Air Travel with a Toddler

Little M is the consummate high flyer. She's been on so many flights and hasn't had to pay for a seat yet! Ok, it's not because of her platinum rewards card, it's because she is still under two. And we haven't gone overseas yet, so we haven't truly tested her/our patience. However, we have gone on more than a handful of domestic flights, and I would like to share my experiences with you.

1. Travel with a companion.
Just do it. If you have this option. Travelling alone is so much more stressful for you and your child. If you have another person with you, at least one of you will be able to play candy crush at some point. Or drink a beverage, hot or otherwise. Or go to the bathroom. You really don't want to be trusting your baby with a stranger while going to the bathroom. Or trying to get your pants down while holding them while in a tiny airline washroom. Sorry to leave you with that image... Let's just say the list of benefits is endless and move on.

2. Breastfeed (if you still are). Often.
A happy baby is a sucking baby. A happy baby is not hungry. A baby with a mouthful of boob is a baby that isn't crying. Remove the word baby and insert the word toddler, if applicable.

3. Travel during nap time. Or night time. 

While I know this isn't always feasible (especially with delays... hello? why are all flights delayed when you have a squalling infant?), this is something that has saved our lives many a time. The loud white noise of the plane basically puts M straight to sleep. Heaven! And I still have a hand free to play, you guessed it, candy crush. Or even read a book on the old iPad. I am not joking. A child asleep on a plane is heaven.

4. Be prepared to sing. Out loud.
Trust me. People would rather hear "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" one thousand times than hear your darling wail. Also, if you sing softly enough into your darling's ear, that white noise will ensure that almost nobody can hear you anyways.

5. Carry a boatload of Snacks/Toys
Yes, it means your diaper bag will be as heavy as a porcelain toilet, but by gods, you will be thankful for every rattle, board book and cuddly bear that makes your child smile. Even if each one only buys you a few minutes, stay placid knowing you have an endless array of distractions.

Ever travelled with your child? Any tips to share? 

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: A Texas Vacation

Blogging on vacation is difficult. It, in fact, is almost impossible. Even though there are four (yes, four) adults looking after the little one, there doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day to sit down and write. And maybe I'm being a little lazy (or a lot lazy!), because I'm on vacation. For this, I am sorry. Nope, actually, I'm not sorry at all. And look here! I just blogged!

M is wearing a Desigual onesie, a Roots sweatshirt and loves her Grandad!

Friday, February 28, 2014

Driving, driving, flying (finally) with baby!

We made it to Texas! Yes, its that time of year again, time to visit the family down in Stephenville (ok more like Morgan Mill) (that's middle of nowhere for you geography aficionados). Everything is bigger in Texas, and that includes the drive from the airport. But I am getting ahead of myself.

We booked the flight to leave out of Buffalo at 9:30am, connect in Cleveland, then arrive in Dallas at 2:30pm. Brilliant. Left the house at 5am for the 2 hour drive to the airport, M conveniently woke us up at 2:30am, after which neither of us slept. I'm talking about me and my husband. M fell back asleep at 3:30.

We made it to the airport in plenty of time… only to find that our flight was 25 minutes delayed. Not an issue. Played in kid's play place, M loved the people mover and Dad had to ride back and forth over and over again with her.

Flight delayed by 2 hours. We would miss our connection in Cleveland, and would have to wait until 6pm to take a flight to Houston, then arrive in Dallas at 10:30pm.

No thanks.

How about leaving at 6:15 the next morning?

No thanks.

Ok, fine, how does a direct flight out of Toronto sound? Tonight at 7pm? Arrive at 9:30?

Yes please!

So back in the car, deciding to drive to Grandmas to play for a bit before going to the airport. A great idea! Grandma took care of the baby and even gave us money to go to a fancy restaurant for lunch. If you are ever in the Morriston, ON area, check out Envers, the food is absolutely amazing.

Then back to Toronto for our flight. A few gripes about the Air Canada US departures section: 1) No children's play place - really? Thanks for depriving your smallest customers, Air Canada and 2) There is nowhere to sit and wait at certain gates. It was taken over by a weird restaurant that features iPads at every seat. And white leather furniture. Not cool, airport, not cool.

And still this saga continues. Our flight? You guessed it, delayed. Argggg. But at least M slept the entire time.

M is sleeping on my lap
Deeply, soundly.
A little angel at rest. 
But then we made it! To Texas! And a 2 hour drive to Stephenville.

We made it by midnight, and crashed into blissful sleep.



Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Baby 'Round the House

Baby in the Fridge!

M is hungry in an American Apparel onesie and a Petit Bateau Shirt-Dress

Baby in the Tub!


M is looking to get her Obaibi sweater, Baby Gap pants and Clarks shoes wet.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Washing and Washing: Cloth Diapers

A while ago I posted about the stink in my cloth diapers. Well, ladies, the stink is not a-lingering! It has been completely eradicated. The entire house is thankful. Even the neighbours are thankful. As well as the bus driver. The world really is full of thankful people. I digress.

I can't really blame anything but the change I made in regards to my laundry soap.

I recently switched from Nellie's (which admittedly, I really really liked), to the Laundry Tarts unscented powder. Though it claims to be unscented, there is a modicum of smell to it, and the ingredients actually say something to that effect (I would quote the package, but I have thrown it away as I poured the soap into a metal container I keep for that purpose).

Now, my cloth diapers are fresh smelling, soft and absorbent.

M's bottom is rash free and pinch-worthy.

And I still have to wash the diapers every other day... maybe every third day if I'm feeling particularly lazy.

To be honest, when am I not feeling lazy? Oh yeah, when I actually get to sleep. Thank you new teeth (bringing M's official tooth count up to 8). I am thankful for teeth, I am. They help us eat.

Good night.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Ill Prepared Mommy Tip #1

And now for a new segment I'd like to call Ill Prepared Mommy Tips.

For this inaugural post, I will start with a little something that happened today: bright sunintheeyes. What? No baby shades? Only a brimless hat? Never fear, flexible mamas, just grab the sunglasses of the nearest Dad/Uncle/Grandpa who happens to be with you, then plop them on your child's face. In 1 second flat your little angel will stop their wailing mid-scream, look befuddled, then turn on the charm for a red-carpet worthy photo- op!

M is being sunned in a Cosatto stroller and is sporting an Osh  Kosh hat, Patagonia jacket and  Oakley shades. 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Having Kids, Working Shifts

I'm not talking about taking turns - Dad takes the morning, Mom takes the afternoon, I'm talking about my job. It entails shift work. My husband, on the other hand, is a 9-5er.

I've now been back at work for 3 months. And it is time for me to start taking shifts. This weekend was my first. It is a good thing, because it means I get this Thursday and Friday off, which I need because we are going to Texas, Texas!

However, working for 10 days in a row is hard. It means not spending my usual full weekend day with my little princess. It means checking my email A LOT, hoping that there is a picture of her in my inbox. Like this one:

I miss you so much Mom! Um, more puffs?
It also means that life is returning back to normal. I can no longer blame my lack of knowledge on Maternity leave. It almost feels now like I never left. 

So why do I feel like a completely different person?

Friday, February 21, 2014

The Daycare Virus

This nasty thing is destroying my intestinal tract!!
I am so sick of being sick!!

I thought that kids were supposed to be the ones who got sick at daycare. Instead, it's the parents in this household that are suffering.

My poor husband, I would have held his hair while he vomited into the toilet if it was long enough to hold.

Neither of us had any energy yesterday. We fell asleep at 7pm. Right after we put M to sleep. 7 pm! And we slept until morning. 

I don't think I've had this many fevers since I was 1 year old.

It sucks. Please tell me it will end. Please tell me that I will defeat the evil virus.

Anybody?

Image courtesy of sscreations / Freedigitalphotos.net

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Wool Diaper Cover

Look at my belly, belly, belly button! (M in a Disana wool diaper cover) (what you can't see is that she pooped just minutes after changing from a pocket to this diaper) (though maybe that's why she's shouting to me)

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

How to Get your Toddler to Eat: Part 2

M wouldn't eat tonight. Apparently she wouldn't eat today at daycare either.

Nobody knows why. She seemed happy and full of energy and not in any visible discomfort.

We offered her crackers: no.

We offered her puffs: no.

We offered her cheese: no.

We offered her bananas: no.

We made her favourite dish, vegetable risotto: no.

We gave up feeding her and gave her a bath. After the bath, she ran around upstairs naked as a jaybird. She climbed up onto the rocking chair and laughed with glee.

We offered her risotto one last time: success! About 10 bites went into her before the final preparations for sleep began.

Now we know what to do when she won't eat - strip her down!! (Maybe she didn't want to get her outfit dirty... can you blame her?)

M is wearing a Lucky Brand poncho and leggings, and is reading Snug by Carol Thompson

Monday, February 17, 2014

Family Day, Baby Style

This week for their ketchup with us blog hop, the ladies have asked (I mean suggested) to set a timer for 10 minutes, and then write about whatever. This is it, my blank canvas awaits. And it seems like my brain has followed suit by emptying itself of all creative ideas.

As an additional challenge, I've decided to do this multitasking style, by watching Masterchef at the same time as I type. Sorry, Masterchef Canada. It seems pretty exciting, way more exciting than this empty white page...

Today for Family Day, I decided to take the day off. We actually don't get the day off, so I had to use a vacation day but I have so many that I didn't mind in the slightest. Plus I'm working this upcoming weekend so it will make my 10 day in a row stretch one day shorter.

Today on my list of things to do was: make bread, make a crock pot dinner, and clean the car. It all happened! Woo hoo! This is mainly due to the fact that the in-laws came over to spend time with little M. It was great. They got to be the ones to read the same books over, and over, and over (and over!) again to her. They made the mistake of bringing down "Brown bear, brown bear what do you see?" and then little M says, while signing, "More, More!" and then you have to read it all again.

While they did that, I crossed items off my list and also folded M's laundry. I think I have to make a confession: I am a baby clothes addict. M has more shirts than she can wear in a month. And they are all super adorable.
M rocking Dior
She actually has a Dior onesie! (Okok, I'm not that insane, it was a gift!). Some of my favourite kids's clothing brands include Zutano, Tea Collection, American Apparel and I absolutely adore Hatley pyjamas. If she wasn't sleeping right now, I'd be photographing a fashion show for you. But alas, that will be left to another post.

Yessss. 10 minutes are up. That was only slightly painful!

What are your favourite kid's clothing brands?



Sunday, February 16, 2014

Ayurvedic Rituals Spa Review (Toronto)

Valentines weekend couldn't be better! Last night I was showered with gifts - thai takeout, Godiva chocolates and blood orange mimosas. I wasn't too keen on the mimosas, but when made with freshly squeezed blood orange juice - delicious! Plus, the color makes for an excellent Valentine's day drink.

Then yesterday, as a Christmas gift to myself and a friend, a facial and massage was the plan. We had a groupon from Ayurvedic Rituals spa on Bathurst and Dupont. And as you may recall from previous posts, I love using groupons! It was the best reviewed spa that I could find that had a groupon for sale around Christmas, and though I've never had any Ayurvedic treatments, I was confident that it would be amazing.

And it was. Absolutely and sinfully the most incredible pampering experience of my life.

It started with a sensory exploration - we had to choose the scent that spoke most to us. The therapist told us that we would know which was right for us for that day. And I did. The other scents smelled OK, but the Shiva scent smelled so perfect that I knew it was right for me. Ayurveda is all about  aromatherapy and whichever scent you choose sort of describes what you need to work on that day.

The facial included a scalp massage, as well as an upper back and neck massage. The therapist used warm olive oil generously to massage my body and it felt like heaven. It felt like a warm bath of oil and I felt cocooned and safe and completely, utterly relaxed. The facial itself was remarkable - they make their own cleanser, exfoliating powder and moisturizer so you know they are fresh and natural. Based on my skin type, they also applied fresh natural plain yogurt to my face to help with the redness and breakouts.

Afterwards, they provide a consultation which tells you what to eat for your body type, as well as a skin care routine that would be best for you. She doesn't hard sell her products, and for me recommended only the cleanser and moisturizer as well as the occasional application of yogurt.

Would I go back? In a heartbeat! And so would my friend. In fact, we are planning to go back before the end of March. I am already counting down the days. If you need a spa to go to in Toronto... this is the one, I'm telling you.

**Full disclosure: I was not paid anything to write this review. All opinions are my own. This post does contain a groupon affiliate link**

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Toddler Behaviour: Naughty is Normal

Little M has recently learned the word "No". Not only does she wag her finger at you if you say it to her, she will also respond to questions with it, for example, "Do you want a banana?" "No. Nana." Then she may or may not eat the whole thing. She will also say it when you ask her if you can have something, another example, a mum-mum wrapper. She will say no, then cling to it like its her life raft and she's in the middle of Lake Ontario.

If you manage to pry it out of her clutching fingers, she will moan and (fake) cry and throw herself on the ground. She may kick and writhe and pound her little fists on the floor. It is so cute and so annoying at the same time. Mostly annoying if she's doing it in the middle of the supermarket. That floor is so dirty!


Is it love? Or CPR?
At least the tantrums are short lived. 

One good thing is that she has also increased her capacity for affection. She loves giving hugs and kisses to everything and anything. See above (and ignore the Christmas Sheets... it hasn't yet been 2 months yet and I really love them). 

So for every bad there's a good.  And for every crappy day, there has got to be an amazing weekend around the corner. (Or I'm doomed). 



Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Shine Baby Diapers - Review and Giveaway

By now you may or may not know that I cloth diaper. I like cloth diapering, though I'm not a fanatic about it. Disposables have their time and place. Like today, for example, when I had to run out the door to make a last minute doctor's appointment for little M who sadly has contracted pink eye. My husband and I are so psychosomatic that we have both been experiencing madly itchy eyes all night, with not a hint of redness to be seen. I still might rub some antibiotic goo in mine before I go to sleep. But I digress.

This post is about cloth diapers, not goo oozing from eyes or ointment tube.

These Prints are adorable, am I right??


I wanted to increase my cloth diaper stash so I ordered some *gasp* cheapies from China on ebay. I realize that they may not have been ethically produced, and the cloth may have been whitened using chemicals but I still figure that it is better to use them than disposables most of the time. You may recall from an earlier post that I received a Mon Petit Mardi cloth diaper in a mystery box, and that it also seemed like a cheapie cloth diaper from China.

Shine baby diapers are not quite as good quality as the Mon Petit Mardi diaper, especially the insert, which seem to have been sewn in a hurry. However, the pocket diapers themselves are quite well made with super adorable prints. The white plastic snaps on them also seem a bit cheap, so we will see how they wear over time.

The fit is the same as the other diapers I own, and is quite adjustable for your baby. From the Shine Baby information page on ebay (I had to fix the spelling!!):

Outer Layer:   The Outer/Cover Layer is made from New lmproved Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU) Laminated Fabric, which is highly water-resistant, breathable and very durable. it can be washed without any deformation and gives an ideal protection for your baby, the bed and linens from leakage.

Inner Layer:   The soft polyester fleece inner layer gently touches our baby's skin. This layer can wick moisture away from babies skin and keep bottom dry. There is a pocket opening located in the inner layer to accommodate the microfiber inserts/liners, you can stuff the insert inside the pocket for maximum absorbency. All of these advanced designs are to make your baby feel easy and comfortable.

Features:
Size:
Babies weighing 3-13kg (6.5-28 pounds)
Dimensions of insert:
35cm in length (13.77")X13.5cm in width (5.31")
Wash temperature:
under 30.(Less than 86°F)
One size design:
S.M.L all in one size. (Please adjust the button according to the body size of baby)


How to wash the diapers :
Please use water under 30℃.(Less than 86°F) , Do not boil them for disinfection . Use Baby cleaning agents. Do not use Fabric Softener. Dry naturally, do not iron. If you have DIAPER SPRAYER, it will be easier to clean this diaper.

I ordered 5 of these diapers, and have decided to pass one on to you, dear readers, in the form of a giveaway. The retail value of these diapers is only around $5-$6, however, it is always nice to get something free, and will give a chance for one lucky reader to try one of these diapers without a)paying for it and b)having to order more than one, in case it doesn't work for you. I have absolutely no affiliation with Shine Baby, other than being an ebay customer. Giveaway is for residents of Canada/US only. 
Shine Baby Diaper Giveaway - Adorable Grey Print Minky Pocket Diaper with one insert.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, February 10, 2014

Currently...

This is my first post in the Currently style, brought to you by A Mama Collective. I love the idea, as it makes me think about what is going on in my life. And hopefully it will help you get to know me a bit better. 

Thinking about:
I am thinking a lot about work these days. Too much, if you ask me. I was promoted a few months before my one year maternity leave, and now that I'm back I see just how much more work it is to be in this position. Considering I only make $2 per hour more than the other techs, it doesn't seem that worth it. I really need to stop thinking about work so much unless I'm at work.

Reading:
I just took two books out of the library by Alan Bradley. I actually saw an ad for these books on the subway and became intrigued.  He's a Canadian mystery writer, and in his series, the protagonist is an 11 year old girl. I am obsessed with this book. It is amazingly written, gripping enough to take me away from reality when I'm on the subway. Can't ask for much more than that! Read these books, I urge you.


M is obsessed with reading, just like Mommy was (before M came along...)

Listening to: 
Listening to a lot of Morrissey. What's not to love? He's been in my head for a while. 

Watching: 
I am in a long-term relationship with Project Runway, but it is not currently on. Instead, they are airing Under the Gunn, which is sort of along the same lines. Amazing! (Though not quite as good as PW) (Also, I love Mondo, whom they brought back as a mentor... thanks reality television!)

Thankful for:
Reality Television (see above). 
Also, terribly thankful for my amazing husband who takes care of me and our baby. In one million ways, from tidying the kitchen to keeping us fed. And letting me sleep in on Sunday!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Breastfeeding a Toddler

While I had every intention of breastfeeding M until she was 2, things are not going exactly as planned. I love breastfeeding. It didn't come easy, but once we were in a groove, I always enjoyed it. I never had sore nipples, and only had blocked ducts a few times, mainly from sleeping on my stomach, I think.

In my head, once she turned one, we would still have a loving feed in the morning, potentially one after daycare, then one more at night. Things would gradually wind down on their own and she would self wean without complaint.

Hah! How wrong I was. How wrong I always am! (Remember when I thought I would become an earth goddess while pregnant?).

M will still breastfeed in the morning, after daycare, and before bed... but also many, many times in between (except while I'm working. obviously). This morning after waking up (I was able to sleep in until 8!), as soon as she saw me she literally launched herself at my breasts. And for this entire weekend she has been sucking, and sucking, and sucking. I don't even think there is very much milk left in there!

Her new word for "I want" is "Meh-nah". So she comes at me all the time, signing like a crazed zombie for milk and whining "Meh-nah, meh-nah, meh-nah". My poor nipples are like hamburger meat. I feel like she is sucking out all my energy. For the first time ever, I'm wondering if it is time to wean. Sigh. Hopefully, like everything, this is just a phase, because I can't take it much longer.
What do you mean I can't stay here all night??

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Homemade Valentine's Day Cards

Valentine's Day Cards for the kids at Daycare
I decided to make Valentine's Day cards for the kids at M's daycare. (Did I go too far? These kids are anywhere from 7 to 18 months...). Possibly, I went overboard, but I guess I have become one of those moms. (It's ok. I am a slacker in most other ways. I just happen to like making cards).

Making them made me happy. Well, except for the gluing part. I have a bit of an aversion to too much gluing. I think we all do. 

I made them using items from Stampin' Up. My cousin-in-law (is that a real thing?) is a demonstrator and roped me in to card making last summer. From kijiji, I got the 2004 "Toucan of my Love" stamp set, and then used the colours and paper that I already had to make these cute little cards. 

Because M is too small to help make the cards, I held a marker in her hand so she could "write" her name on the back. Next year, or maybe even the year after, I feel like we could have a lot of fun making cards together. I think young kids love stamping... I can't wait!


Weekend Block Party Blog Linkup

Thursday, February 6, 2014

On Fitness

It's been a long time coming, and I have definitively decided that I want to reduce the pooch - the tummy pooch that resides over the top of my jeans. I'd like to shrink it down to at least half it's size. I feel like that is doable. I feel like if I get rid of it all together, I'd be missing a part of myself, right?

So aside from diet (yep, still doing the old visualizing with the Gabriel Method), I have also undertaken the Bikini Body Mommy challenge. It is a 90 day challenge, which I think started at the beginning of January, but I started two days ago.  The woman who does the program is pretty amazing - she just had her 4th child and wants to lose the baby weight, and is helping everyone else out by posting her workouts. She is very inspiring, and very real. She struggles at the end of the workout just like I do.

Even though I'm only on day 3.

And I can barely walk. My butt, thighs and stomach hurt something fierce. But at least it's targeting the right areas! That is undeniable! My butt, however, feels otherwise and is protesting in pain. But I will persevere!

Actually, I am putting off workout number 3 in favour of blogging.

Also, my husband is downstairs watching Suits, which is just icky. I hate that show, and don't want to work out anywhere near it. In fact, I made my husband turn it off yesterday and instead of watching TV, he had to cheer me on while I did squat jumps.

Speaking of squat jumps. My body actually told me this morning that it already feels bikini ready, so I really don't need to do anymore squat jumps.

Also, doing 20 is impossible. By the third set yesterday, I could only make it to 8 before collapsing on the mat, my legs a pile of jelly. One cannot jump on jelly.

Anyhow, I will keep you posted on my progress, though I categorically refuse to post any before/after pictures, especially not in a bikini... I'll leave that to your imagination!

Ketchup With Us

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Talking Dog

I had a very bad day. Baby sick. Husband sick. Had to leave work early. Baby wouldn't sleep. Etc., etc.

So I though I would post something amusing.

Because my baby can't talk... and neither can my dog... I'm pretty sure this is what little Lulu would say if she could!


video

I got this app for free today using my "app of the day app". It's called My Talking Pet. Free today, $0.99 otherwise. I wonder if it would work if I put a picture of the baby in there...


Glossy Blonde
Wot So Funee?

Monday, February 3, 2014

Force-Feeding your Child: What to do when your Toddler Refuses to Eat

The title of this post may lead one to believe that I have the answers.

Sadly, I don't.

The answer is definitely not force-feeding. I've tried to force feed my husband. It only makes him mad. Think about what response your toddler will have. My daughter spits out food before you can even get it past her lips. It's one of those infuriatingly adorable things she does.

Tonight she would have absolutelynothing to do with dinner. We offered stew, bread, crackers, a banana, cereal, water, forks, spoons both metal and plastic. What she did with said offerings? She threw them on the floor and said "oh-oh". She looked around for the dogs and offered them some of her bounty. She whined and whined. So we asked her if it was bedtime. In response, she made her way to the stairs and crawled up as fast as she could.

We bathed the little monkey, then we decided to offer her food one last time before we put her to bed.

And she ate.

Three servings of oatmeal.

Then refused the banana.

Then, after a good tooth brushing, fell instantly asleep.

Parents everywhere, fear not. Your child will eat at some point. I just cannot tell you when.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Superbowl Sunday

It's Superbowl Sunday, and while I thought it was surely the Green Bay Packers vs. the Raiders (I was sadly mistaken), I did manage to concoct some delicious, high calorie snacks for the event.

Mind you, I'm not actually going to watch it. Instead, I'll be roaming through the interweb whilst munching on my...

Pretzels and Beer Cheese

Hello! Amazing! 

I made the pretzel dough in my bread maker a) because I can't be bothered to knead and b) because my bread maker makes crappy bread, but excellent dough.

I made the beer cheese by mixing beer and cheese! And garlic powder, pepper and crushed red pepper flakes. Do this over a double boiler, and melt the cheese before adding the other stuff. I used a mixture of cheddar, oka and cream cheese.

De-Lish.

Go football guys in tight pants! May the best team win!