Tuesday, May 31, 2011

green eyed monster

I was out walking with the little 'uns yesterday, beautiful, sunny, happy Monday stroll through the village.  All was going well (ish) when I spotted up in the distance two 20 something ladies on the opposite side of the road.  That was when I smashed headlong into the green eyed monster. Kabam.

What was it about those lovely ladies that caused such a stir in me?  Was it those lovely little sundresses purchased from anywhere but the Rupert Centre or Giant Tiger?  Was it the fact that their was no obvious signs of vomit, poop, snot, pureed baby food, or not so pureed toddler food on their super attractive outfits?

Perhaps this collision with aqua had more to do with the bodies barely hidden underneath these flower patterned dresses for the sun?  These bodies that have no visible indications of premature sagging, stretching, scaring, tearing, or any unsightly lumps nor bumps where they do not belong?

Could it possibly have been the careless, carefree way they were sauntering through the streets with a coffee in hand?  Midday?  Not having to worry about the affect the caffeine may have on their precious sleep?  Or how that caffeinated beverage may cause their infant child to become fussy, irritable and *gasp* sleepless through the night?

All of these things seem like they all could have some great potential to emerald it up for me.  Me who was dragging my feet.  Me who was constantly keeping a vigilant eye on the straying toddler.  Me who was probably adorned in yoga pants and a tank top, which, if it was even a might bit stylish,  was hidden underneath all the extra fluid that was pouring out of the infant son, who was strapped to me in an Ergo.  My envy did not, however, lay in any these things.

As I walked down the street with my toddler son running up ahead of me, I was bogged down with a ridiculous amount of stuff, such as, infant son strapped to the front of me.  I was also donning a  largeish cooler bag filled with all the things that a toddler and infant may need such as spare diapers, pants, sleeper, food, liquid, wipes, cloths, spoons, bibs, sunscreen, hats,  etc etc...  To add to the pile of crap I was towing with me, the toddlers tricycle that he no longer wanted to ride.

I dragged my harried self across the parking lot with such bone crushing invidiousness because of their purses..

I have never been a big purse person, but , oh my god, those purses were soooooooo small and light and and and practical. I envied those small leather carriers like nothing I have felt before. I stood there, drool dripping out of my (and both childrens) mouth, back hunching over like Quasimodo.......oh to be able to carry so little.  I miss my back, it used to work so well. ..........

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Tentatively Optimistic

Due to an accidental act of non diapering the night before, that ended, luckily for Colin, in a lack of moisturizing of mama's sheets, we made a non accidental attempt at it again last night.  I had no intention of even tempting this concept for at least another 15 years, maybe 20.

Daytime toilet training was (is) tough enough, I was willing to go to the great lengths of stocking up on adult sized diaper for when my boys were much, much older, just to avoid night time toilet training them.  I, for the very first time in Rohan's life, was in no rush to get to the next developmental stage in his life.

Just imagining the piles and piles of laundry, the sleepless nights, the tears, the disappointment.....nope, not for me. But, alas, we tried it out again last night and, to our absolute surprise and delight, another dry bed.  I am skeptical, however.  I know that at times babies can trick you into thinking you may get a full nights sleep by not waking up a couple of nights in a row, than BAM, back to waking up every two hours.  This could be a toilet training trick.  I am getting all nice and comfortable, not buying anymore pulls ups, than BAM, hello regression, hello urine soaked dreams.

I am nervous and tentatively optimistic.  Imagine how much mother nature would love one less diaper a night..........

Friday, May 27, 2011

losing my touch

I am completely losing my touch, or something.........  This is the third night that I have put Avery down to sleep and he has ended up in hysterics.  Crying.  He never cries, fusses yes, but out right crying?? Oh no, not my angel baby.  I am so used to him doing most of the going to sleep part by himself, that I can offer only the smallest of solace. 

I am, as I have mentioned before, at a bit of loss.  I pat his diaper, I shush, I sing, I used every ounce of self control that I can muster not to pick him up.  I am not heartless, I just don't want him to start to depend on me to fall asleep now, after all this time.  If it had been this way the whole time, fine, I would suck it up and make it so.  But it has been a dream so far, so I don't want to change things.

I have caved, I have picked him up, I have nursed him to sleep, cuddled, loved.  It didn't help.  Damn.  What is going on?  Teeth?  Is he going to crawl soon?  He is backing up and that is the stepping stone usually.  Whatever it is, it is giving me some night time anxiety that I have not had since the infancy of Ro-Dog.    Bah, those unpredictable babies!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Parenting according to your kiddlets

After having a lovely dinner with my brother and his family, I had a parenting epiphany.  I often get mocked by my brother for being too vigilant with Rohan (where as he offers more freedom to his child). I normally just laugh it off or change the subject (what is your opinion about so and so political move....), but this time it made me take a closer look at my parenting methods.

It is true, I can be vigilant with Rohan on certain occasions. This is more often than some parents for sure, though less often then others.  But why do I find that I am always on the watch?  Well, he gets bullied a lot from his peers.  I don't like watching my child get hurt, so I step in, when he is unable, or doesn't know how, to make that other child back off.  He is starting to hold his own a bit more, which is great (ish) but he is super sensitive.  Not hyper sensitive-cannot handle the feel of certain materials on his skin-must remove tags-sock line in the wrong spot makes him crazy-sensitive.  But, he gets upset easily, and takes things personally.

He isn't like a lot of boys his age.  He is a boy, mind you.  He can be rough and tumble, and he definitely uses his hands more, when he should be using his words, but he isn't all over the place.  An awesome example of this was the other day at a playgroup.  A huge garbage truck came pulling up to the curb and all the other boys ran up as close as they could to the truck, screaming and yelling and getting super excited, where as Rohan backed off and covered his ears with his hands. He doesn't like super loud noises, they scare him.

It can take Ro-Dog a long time to get comfortable in a new place, situation or with new people.  I was taking him to a music class for a while and it took him a month or more to finally release his death grip on my legs and at least as much more to finally feel comfortable enough to participate.  

If he cuts himself, he gets completely FREAKED out.  For weeks he will not be able to use that hand/foot/finger/knee.  He absolutely can't, he has a cut.  So I spoon feed him or carry him around for that time period.  Not without encouraging him to try to use the wounded area, but definitely with a sense of non-judgement.  It can be extremely frustrating, but the look on his face once the cut has disappeared is priceless, and totally worth it.

None of these things are a direct reflection of me and my parenting. I have not spent the last three years attempting to mold my child into the person I wanted him to be, trust me, he came to me already molded.  Although, sometimes, life feels like it is a bit more high maintenance, that is okay.  I love all of his quirks and individualism and independence from the crowd, because of these things.  He is Rohan.  This is who he is.  And who that is is AWESOME.

I am not here to change his behaviour, I am just here to watch his back, make sure that he isn't being treated in way that makes him feel like he is less amazing, and to offer him a safe and secure place to feel confident and comfortable in.  This place may be home, but it may also just be in my arms and away from whatever negative situation caused him to climb into them in he first place.

I was not a parent before I had this little guy, so I am parenting according to his needs, not my needs, and certainly not anyone else.  He may not be like your child, and my parenting may be very different from yours. I cuddle and coddle and love my child, not to turn him into a certain type of person, but because these are things that he needs in order to gain the confidence to move forward to his next great adventure ........of peacefully putting a difficult puzzle together, or hiding in a secret cave made of blankets with his friends. Just a quick hug to make sure I am there, and than back to his friends, and his super special cave.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Goodnight lads

While Colin was out gallivanting around town last night with his man friends, I was getting a taste of what life would be like if Avery were not consistently a superstar baby.......it ain't pretty.  For the first time in a long time Avery was having a tough night falling asleep.  On a normal night, that would have been fine (actually it just wouldn't have happened, he is that much of a superstar), I would be upstairs rubbing his belly, tapping his diaper, shushing it up, while Colin put Rohan to sleep.  It is very different when it is just mama.

Rohan needed to be there the whole time, demanded to be there in fact, with threat of screams and fits. I hardly had a choice.  So I had two bambino's to shush that night.  Eventually Avery, me and Rohan ended up reading stories in Rohan's room.  Rohan ever so gently rubbing Avery's back, telling him it's okay................plop goes my whole being turning in to a puddle of goo for these, the sweetest of non sleepers in all of the lands.

Avery has a hard time being around Rohan and not loving all over him with his goopy saliva filled face/hands/mouth, so sleep was far from imminent during this story time adventure.  Another transfer to mama's room, another sleep attempt....failed.  Damn.  And so the three of us in my bed, I nurse Avery with fingers and toes crossed that he will fall asleep.  Laying beside his super cool, most favourite person in the world (ro-dog and not myself of course) meant it was most definitely not happening.

One last try in the crib.  I stand there rubbing his belly with abated breath, occasional giving Rohan the look that says keep your arms and legs inside the bed at all times.  Sleep happened. Slowly, ever so slowly, Avery finally gave up the good fight, with occasional  gasping sobs and the eyes stayed closed.  I dared not breath a sigh of relief as I had yet another little monkey to put to bed.

To avoid any possible sudden movements, I kept him in my bed (to be honest, I prefer them as close to me as possible at night, when I am alone. I can do some serious sketching of myself out when alone in the house) and lay down with him.  With nearly 2 hours of struggle, everyone (myself included) was fast asleep.  This deserved a nice long sleep in for sure.................or up at 5am.  So. Very. Tired.

It sounds like I just do not have my s-h-i-t  together.  But Avery really is just that super amazing.  I normally give him a kiss and flop him into his crib, my job done.  He then proceeds to whimper a bit, roll back and forth, chew on his blanket, pull it over his head, scratch at the crib slats, sleep.  I have watched this process on many occasions, just to see him in action.  It is a beautiful thing.  So needless to say I forgot how to put a baby to sleep by actually working for it.  I was at a loss.  I just have it way too easy.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

100 by 1

I have an ultimate goal of introducing Avery to one hundred foods before he reaches his first birthday.  At the tender age of 7 months, with have only starting his solid foods at 5 and a half months he has so far tried 17 different kinds of  foods.  This is, keeping in mind, going to be a meat free endeavor. I guess this means I am going to have to cut down on the lazy defrost ice cubes of carrot days!  Here we go........

1. apple
2. avocado

3. banana

4. Butternut squash

5. cantelope

6. Green beans

7. homemade organic long grain rice

8. kale

9. mango puree

10. pear

11. plain oatmeal

12. pureed baby carrots

13. pureed baby spinach

14. red swiss chard
15. sweet potato

16. watermelon

17. yam
Least favourite: green beans  Most favourite: Mango..................oh how he loves the mango!

Friday, May 20, 2011


A glimpse into the teenage years
Sometimes I let Rohan try his hand at typing on the ole wordpad on the computer.  He generally just presses random buttons...............but this time he had ulterior motives.  And so I get a small but painful glimpse into  the angst of his future teenage years........dear lord, I am in for it!

Monday, May 16, 2011

My Stuff

SO to maintain a sense of real unmom reality, to get out of the house, to dabble in my (potentially) creative side, and because I have a super awesome baby who *gasp* sleeps for more than 2 consecutive hours, I have been dabbling in a few night classes.

These classes are by no means career expanding (unless I somehow find the money to acquire necessary equipment...............pfffffttt  yeah right!) but they are extremely helpful to me.  Monday nights I have started taking a pottery class, which has the rewards of  instant gratification.  I have already created some bowl, mug and plate masterpieces for the boys.

This class will be permanently completed at the end of this month *sob* as the instructor is moving to a smaller space.  I love this class so very very much.  As well as the above mentioned instant gratification, it also offers a sort of 2 hour meditation.  A full on concentration of whatever creation you are working on.  Hands in constant motion, mind at rest (mostly).  It works to relieve stress, and work out some of the negative energy that has built up over the week.  I am truly going to miss this class. 

My second class is on Thursday nights and it is an introduction photography class.  This class I love as well.  It expands my knowledge of photography, which will, hopefully, in turn, expand my abilities as an amateur momarrazi..........it may even encourage me to go so much as to take photographs of things other than my children!

This is a class that I have to slink into with my sad and pathetic point and shoot camera, hiding it (extremely easily due to it's embarrassing size) under my jacket or under the chair.  I look on enviously at the SLR's of my fellow classmates, assessing how I could possibly afford a camera upgrade, ummm not likely any time soon!

So these classes will both be ending by the end of this month, but up until this point they have served me extremely well.  I have managed to leave the house without children two nights a week, and I have learned a few new creative possibilities.  Will I pursue either of these things?  Maybe when I win the lottery!!  But for now, they have been a couple of great hobbies!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

When do you say BACK OFF?

I was at the mall with the kiddies, waiting for a store to open.  We sat contentfully on the bench while Rohan started up his constant why process.  A why here a why there, than back to the same cycle of why's, over and over again with the why's..........whew, 3 can really be exhausting! 

So anyway, there we are, Rohan busting out his why bombs and my answering them over and over again, wondering when it will ever end, and this older couple sit on the bench behind us.  The woman couldn't help but hear this conversation we were having, and made a humoured comment about the amusement and frustration of this stage, we laughed, than she turned her attention to Rohan.

Now I am not totally sure what compels people to think it is their right to tickle and touch children, EVER, if it is not their child, or if the child does not know them.  For a baby.........okay, a bit more understandable, yet still not really okay in my books.  For a toddler............sooooo not okay.  These guys are little people now, they feel that anxious uncomfortable feeling when strangers talk to them, let alone touch them.

So this lady gave him a little tickle under his chin while talking to him.  He started to get very obviously uncomfortable, and yet she did it again.  He physically moved down the bench to get closer to me and further away from her.  And yet she did it again.  I finally saved him by taking him away from the lady and toward the store in a very nice and friendly manner. Could I have done better?

What I really wanted to do was to tell her to back off, that she was making my child feel uncomfortable, but I didn't.  I didn't want to be rude.  But where is that line?  When do I stop taking my concern for social protocol and take a stand for my boys?

I mean, the lady was invading some personal space, but she certainly wasn't intentionally making anyone feel uncomfortable, she was just loving the pure cuteness of R-Dog.................I get that, he could melt a heart with just a batting of his deluxe, lush, long, lashes.  He is gorgeous.  But still..................BACK OFF LADY

Friday, May 6, 2011

Sparkle Stories

So I won this gift from a much loved blog called Progressive Pioneer.  I won a craft type, online magazine type thingy, which looks mighty cool.  I am more of a paper in front of me kind of girl, so I think, once I get a printer and print it out, I will appreciate it way more! 

The other part of my winnings (heck yes, I love to win stuff!!)  is a years subscription to Sparkle Stories.  This was the first time I had heard of them, and in all honesty, I had no idea what they were all about.  I finally decided to download one with Rohan today, just to see what would happen.  Good Lord the boy loved it.  This is the perfect downtime when there should really be a nap time activity.  He just layed down on the couch content fully listening.

These here Sparkle Stories are basically like books on tape.  Little short children's stories read out load, only a voice, no visuals.  The perfect alternative to TV for sure.  I was skeptical about Rohan actually sitting still long enough to listen to the stories with no visual aid. I have become EXTREMELY guilty about the amount of TV I have been letting Rohan watch.  It is so hard to say no to actually getting something done around the house you know?  It gets so desperate sometimes that it has taken me 4 days to finally find enough time to bathe........but I digress.

So it turns out, he totally enjoyed them.  I managed to get some laundry put away and some of the clothes that Avery has grown out of sorted.  In fact he demanded a second story right after.  I thought for sure he was going to fall asleep.  No such luck.  But it was pretty nice to run around the house and get a few chores done with only one child attached to me, and no TV guilt...............YES!  Success!

Sleeping Angels

I watched both of my boys fall asleep the other night.  I don't usually put Rohan down, that has become daddy's job, but tonight, he wanted mama.  What could I do?

Avery had his shots today. He needed a little extra love in order to fall asleep, just confirmation that there was an additional presence in the room,  a warm, reassuring hand on his belly.  His breath slowed to a steady pace, eyes started toward their gaze inward, eye lids droop, open wide, droop a little bit further, closed.  Open.  Closed. Nice, steady, even breath puffing out his nose.

Rohan lay his head on my shoulder, resisting the idea of going to sleep, while fighting the ever quickening droop of his sleepy little eyelids.  After his breath turned into the even breath of sound sleep, I slipped my arm from his head, placed a blanket over the rise and fall of his sleeping chest.  I tip toed out of his room without causing even the smallest of stirring from my little sleeping beauty.

There is something meditative and magical about watching your children fall asleep.  When you slow down and stop the mad rush of your mind and just watched and felt and heard your kidlets drift into dream land.  Ahhhh  it is lovely!  Unless of course you are in rush to get crap down!! haha

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I need people

After my tragic day of hysteria I managed to spend the next couple of days in glorious sunshine, surrounded by glorious people.  Our little family hit a huge, local, garage sale that was part purchasing super cool stuff, part first social gathering after the long, cold hermit forced winter, and part meeting my brand new, beautiful niece.  It was magical.  So much sunshine, so much people, so many smiles and shocked white, hairy skin..............I loved it.

That fine evening I forced myself and the rest of my family on my poor unsuspecting neighbour, pushing our way into her house cloaked with food and wine.  Bliss.  The next day?  Vegfest with my super awesome friend and her baby and my baby, no toddlers in sight.  This followed by yet another bombardment onto the neighbours and now I feel AWESOME.

I wanted, in my head, to be alone.  Totally alone. For once.  And yet, after being surrounded by all these people,  I feel as if I can breathe again.  I am smiling and am totally happy and sunny and..............not overwhelmed.  What I had taken as a desire to get away from people, seems to have been a craving to actually be around people.  A week at home with two sick kiddies in the country? Well, it's isolating.  I needed to see the sun, I needed people, I needed to be toddler free for a day.  I got it all this weekend and it was exactly what the doctor ordered.

I remember discovering some information (I think it was a Waldorf inspired book, but I could be wrong) about different methods in which to re-energize yourself after a day filled with...........people or no people.  This was specifically to help kids with their ability to keep it together.  Some children need to be taken away from the hub bub and just take some time to themselves.  Other children need to spend some time with other kids to re-energize.  I think I am kind of inbetween, but very much leaning toward theo necessity to be enveloped by the energy of others.  I NEED people.
I actually (don't tell Colin this!), dream of the idea of having a roommate, living with more people.  More people to talk to, to have a morning coffee with.  I really love hanging out with people.  hmmm in this chaos of the week came some self discovery.  Nice work universe, thanks for the message.

As a super interesting side note, Avery FINALLY graduated from his bassinet and is now, tonight, sleeping in his crib......*sob*  I miss the bassinet already, he just looks so small in the crib.