Posted in Parenting

My 4 Month Old Sucks at Tummy Time & Other “Confessions” from a Mom of 3

My eldest, Charles, is going to be 4 years old in about a week.  My daughter, Amélie, just turned 2 about a couple of months ago.  My littlest one, Elliot, is going to be 5 months old in a few days.  My days can get pretty darned hectic (or downright crazy), luckily, I’ve found ways to maintain my sanity.

    1. Elliot sucks at tummy time and I don’t care.  He’s going to be 5 months old in under a week and he still struggles to lift that big ol’ head of his off the ground.  Sure I try to get him to exercise his muscles at least once a day (most days I manage), but it’s usually propped up over his nursing pillow, or doing the airplane or some of the other methods I use.  But “pure” tummy-on-blanket-straight-on-the-floor tummy time is not one of his strengths.img_2152
    2. I don’t care what my toddlers look like when they get out of the house – as long as they are dressed in weather-appropriate clothing.  I want you to picture something in your heads.  Imagine an almost 4-year-old toddler with dark grey sweatpants (that are the wrong side around), a blue plaid button-up shirt, a yellow patterned bow tie and missmatching socks.  Now I want you to imagine this almost 4 year old putting on a red fleece coat with a blue poncho (with tassels) over top and completing the look with fingerless gloves, fireman rain boots and a bright orange earflap beanie.  That was Charles recently.  Unfortunately, he didn’t let me take a picture of him.

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      As you can see, Amélie also has an interesting sense of fashion.
    3. I don’t bathe my kids every day.  In fact, sometimes I skip a day or two or three and then bring them in the shower with me the next morning to give them a quick wash before bringing them to daycare.  And speaking of showers…
    4. I don’t shower every day.  I used to shower every day.  I used to love showers.  Then, I had kids.  Nowadays showers usually include one to three kiddos in the washroom with me.  These days, a shower is a luxury.  A shower where I can be completely alone is almost a Haley’s comet sighting type event.
    5. You never know what you’re going to walk into when you come through the door of my house.  Sometimes, it looks like it’s run by someone who has her sh*t together, sometimes it looks like freaking Tornado Alley.  I may not have a Pinterest Perfect house, but I’m okay with that, because what I have works for me.
    6. I sometimes bring Elliot in bed with me. Recently the little one went through a wonder week, a growth spurt and teething (yup, he cut his first pearly white a couple of weeks ago) and I had a supply drop due to the onset of my period.  These were not happy days (and horrible nights).  To save my sanity, I brought the kid in bed with me to nurse a couple of times so that I could get a bit of shut-eye.

So, there you have it.  These are six of the things that I have let go of to keep my sanity.  What kinds of concessions have you made since becoming a parent?

 

#mykiddosays Nov. 14th 2016

Remember that show: Kids Say the Darndest Things?  Well it turns out that they really do.  Sometimes, the littles in the house crack me up.  Let me share one of our more recent convos. with you.

Me:  So Charles, are you going to be a policeman when you grow up?

Charles: Nope.

Me: Ok then, what *are* you going to be?

Charles [matter-of-factly]: A superhero.

I feel safer already.

What has your kiddo said recently that has made you laugh?  Feel free to share in the comments or via Twitter with the hashtag #mykiddosays.

Posted in Parenting

The Kid With The Kind Soul

My almost-four-year-old is, I expect, like many of his brethren of the same age: a complete self-centred egotist (is that a pleonasm?) sometimes.  However, as he reminded yesterday, he is also capable of a lot of consideration.

Your see, yesterday, my husband and I left the kids with their grandparents for some much needed couple time.  As has become customary for us when we aren’t going to be having supper with the kids, we asked Charles what he would like to eat for supper.  To be honest, I fully expected for him to say he wanted to eat hot dogs (because that is what he always chooses).  However, the way the conversation turned out made my heart melt.

The Hubby: Charles, what do you want to eat for supper tonight with Pépère and Mamie?

Charles: Pépère is allergic to onions, right?

The Hubby: Yes he is.

Charles: Ok, well, I want to eat club sandwiches.

The kid knows that we always top our hot dogs with chopped onions at home so he decided to take the time to find something that he liked and that he knew didn’t contain any onions.

I seriously love this kid to bits.

Posted in Parenting

Crazy Morning

Most mornings are a varying degree of crazy.  Some a relatively sane.  Some are a balance of sane and crazy.  Some are like this morning.

Amélie is back in diapers since yesterday evening.  I decided I was tired (both literally and figuratively) of not sleeping on account of being worried about how much longer she’d hold in her pee.  So besides running after her to try to change her so-full-it-was-seeping diaper, after breakfast, I also had to run after her to get her dressed and then get her coat and shoes on.

Charles, on the other hand, was constantly changing between his “I’m a big boy” mode, his “I’m an insufferable tattletale” mode and his “I want to control everything” mode.  Whew!

Then, Elliot was starting to become tired (who wouldn’t be with all the screaming and running around that was happening) and started to communicate that fact to me (by crying, of course).

So here I was, standing in the entrance of the house.  Charles was telling me that his sister stunk.  I was realizing that she stunk.  She was yelling because her brother was saying that she was stinking.  Charles was telling me that Elliot was crying.  Amélie was insisting (very loudly) that there was no poop in her diaper.  Elliot was pursuing his attempts at communicating his annoyance at the fact that he was tired and strapped in his car seat and hot and still not sleeping.

Then the doorbell rings.

I answer and this dude from one of the cable companies around here is standing there talking on the phone.

Me: Hi

Him: [continuing his conversation]

Me (insisting): What can I do for you?

Him: [telling the other person on the phone to wait a bit] You called.

Me: Uh, nope, I didn’t (I know this for a fact because we don’t do business with this company on account of the fact that all of its employees seem to be blessed with the idiocy gene).

Him: But isn’t your address [leans back to see the door number] 126 street name?

Me: Yes, it is, but I didn’t call you.

Him: Oh!  There are a lot of kids here (guess he finally noticed the commotion behind me).

Me: There are three.

Him: Do you run a daycare?

Me: No, they’re all mine, BUT I was on my was to daycare.

Him: But you called.

Me: (Holy crap, is this guy dense?) No, I did not.  Perhaps you should recheck the door number or the street name.

Him: [taking the phone away from his ear to look at it] Oh.  I’m supposed to go to 116 street name.

Me: [slams the door in his face before turning around to take care of the kiddo’s diaper]

Posted in Parenting

Potty Training Woes: Why I Always Want What I Can’t Have

I swear, these kids are going to drive me insane.

When I started potty training Charles, things went as expected.  He had accidents.  For the first two weeks, I remember questioning my decision to potty train in the first place.  I just wanted to stop having to mop the floors and spray the couch and wash piles upon piles of urine-soaked clothing.  Eventually though, he got the hang of it (and stopped having those horrible regression days) and he was officially day-time potty trained.

Now he’s almost four and still wears a diaper at night, which he wets 95% of the time.  Recently, I’ve found myself wanting him to be completely potty trained and be able to ditch the diapers altogether, but it seems his body just isn’t ready yet.

As you know, I started potty training Amélie over the weekend.  The first two days went without a hitch (meaning, they were hit and miss, but getting progressively better overall). Unlike the first time we tried potty training, the little miss didn’t get upset when she had an accident.  She would just announce it, get cleaned up and proceed to resume playing.  She told us when she needed to go, sometimes she made it, sometimes she didn’t sometimes she started to pee on the floor and managed to hold in the rest long enough to finish on the potty.

Then, something weird happened.

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This one is a special kind of stubborn.

She started holding her pee for longer and longer periods of time, telling me that she didn’t need to go.  She would wiggle, tell me she had to go, sit on the potty for a while, then get up telling me she had no pee.  On Tuesday morning, her diaper was dry.  She thankfully peed in the potty after I gave her the iPad to play with, but she had held it it for 13 hours.  Then, at daycare she had an accident in the morning and had a huge pee in the potty after her nap (the sitter told me she’d never seen the potty so full!).  After that, nada.  Even at home, in the evening, she didn’t pee.  She pooped after supper, but that was all.  I put a diaper on her and put her down for the night.  I went to bed convinced that I’d have to make a trip to the hospital this morning because the last time I checked her diaper, at 11pm, it was still dry.

Luckily, when she woke up this morning, her diaper was full.  The only problem is, I have no idea when it happened.  She didn’t pee before going to daycare this morning, this despite sitting her on the potty with the iPad, then with a story and bringing her in the shower with me.  Seriously, at this point, I’ll take a pee anywhere.  In the car, on the couch, on the floor.  I just want her to stop holding it in so long and pee more often.

I’m not sure what to do.  She is obviously able to control her bladder, she isn’t afraid to poop on the potty like her brother was.  She sits on the potty on her own accord, but she just doesn’t go!  I’m at the point where I’m wondering if I’m not better off just putting her back into diapers.

Insight, suggestions, advice?

Posted in Parenting

Potty Training: Take 2

Potty Training: it’s happening.

It’s happening this weekend in fact.

It’s a 3 day weekend so it’s now or never.

I’ve been down this path before.  Charles was about the same age when we embarked on the potty training journey.  And what a journey it way (see here, here, here and here).

I’ve already given it a tentative go about a month ago with Amélie.  We lasted two days.  She just wasn’t having it.  Oh, she’d gotten good at holding it in and on the first day, we hardly had any pee to mop up.  But on day 2 she had an accident, followed by a meltdown.  She became stressed about using the potty and back into the closet it went.

But now, it’s time to try again.  You know why?

fullsizerenderIt’s this one’s fault ^^

You see, Elliot is a big baby.   The last time he was weighed a few weeks ago, he was just shy of 19 lbs.  I reckon he’s over 20 lbs.  But that is not the point.  The point is that both he and his big sis are in washable diapers.

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This is a problem because Elliot’s thighs don’t fit in his diapers anymore.  He needs a bigger size.  He needs the size his sister’s wearing.  And since there is just no way that I will remain sane if I have to wash diapers every day (which I will if they both share the same diapers), it’s time to potty train.

Now, I think that this time around we are set up for success for a few reasons:

  1. We’ve been counting down the days to the start of potty (and using the words “big girl” a lot).
  2. We’re going to turn it into a celebration (and I’ve got the balloons and stickers to prove it)

    (In case you haven’t noticed, my daughter is a little bit obsessed with pigs)

I’m still unafraid of using bribery.

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I’m pretty sure we won’t need ALL of this candy to get the toddler potty trained.

So, there you have it.

Wish me luck!

Posted in Parenting, Projects

Stellar: Earflap Beanie

This is the new project I just finished.  Isn’t it cute?  I used the standard earflap beanie pattern that can be found here, on the Repeat Crafter Me blog.  This is my go to spot for the hat patterns because they work up quickly, the seams come together nicely and the sizing is always spot on.

Then I crocheted a star using the pattern here.  The star worked up super easily (I tried a few patterns and this one was definitely the winner).  I didn’t use the fabric stiffener, but I did block the piece overnight to give it a more pointy look as it looked like a flower once finished.

I finished off by using surface slip stitches to create the tail of the shooting star.  Here  is the tutorial I used when first using the technique a few months ago.

The yarn I used for the hat is Lion Brand Wool-Ease in Navy and Gold for the star and accent colour.

Now it’s time for me to start a poncho for my son.  Cheers!

What projects do you have going on right now?

Posted in Parenting

Language Acquisition in the ESL Kiddo

We are a French-speaking family living in a French-speaking environment.  My kids go to a French daycare and will be attending a French school.  However, it is important to my husband and I that our kids be bilingual (French and English).  Though we know that they will have ESL lessons in school, we started exposing them to the English language very early on because we know that the earlier they are exposed to a language, the better the chance they’ll be able to learn it.

Keeping that in mind, we’ve exposed our kiddos to English in various ways: nursery rhymes, books, songs, Youtube videos and Netflix.  We’ve even chosen to register them in swimming lessons that happen in a predominantly English-speaking city close to where we live so that they can benefit from hearing English once per week.  (The instructors at the pool they go to are fantastic, they are all bilingual and speak to their French-speaking students in French and English to their English-speaking students.  Win-win!).

Now Charles knows quite a few words in English and he is conscious that it is a completely different language than the one he is used to using.  Sometimes, he plays and “speaks” in English.  I tell you, even though the vast majority of the “words” he uses aren’t real, the intonation is spot on.  It is absolutely adorable!  But even his use of actual English words can yield interesting results.

For instance, given that the “th” sound doesn’t exist in French, it is generally difficult to reproduce by people whose mother tongue is French.  For example, a French-speaking person will typically either drop the “h” or turn the “th” into an “f”.  The number “three” might become “free” or “tree”.  Factor in a toddler who still hasn’t mastered all of the sounds in his mother tongue and counting to ten for him sounds like this:

one, toop, freen, fow, five, six, seven, yate, nine, ten

For a while, he kept seeing “fucks” everywhere.  (You know, white fucks, black fucks, firefucks).

Today, it was his turn to pick the first song from his Spotify playlist on his way to daycare.  His choice?  Row, row, row your butt.

Sing it!

Are your children bilingual?  Are your toddlers still struggling with certain sounds?  What are some of the funny things you’ve heard from them?