Posted in fitness, Parenting

Losing the Pre-Baby Weight

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One thing I’ve noticed since starting to blog some 4.5 years ago (and this is probably because I read a fair amount of blogs written by mothers) is that there seems to be this desire to lose the baby weight and try to regain as much as one’s pre-baby body as possible.  That’s great, really (and no, I am not being sarcastic)!

In my case, I’m super happy with my post-baby body.  Ah, but now I hear you thinking: “But why is she talking about losing weight, then?”

Let me explain.

I am well aware that three pregnancies and deliveries have wreaked havoc on my body.  Let’s talk, for instance about:

  • my droopy breasts (nope, cannot even think of going out of the house without a bra anymore – as for strapless bras…useless!);
  • the road map of stretch marks on my belly;
  • my plumbing problems (oh hello unexpected flow of urine accompanying laughter!);
  • the scar(s?) along my perineum.

Need I say more?

Anyways, like I said, I’m totally cool with those.  I’m happy with all of the changes that have occurred in my body in the last 5 years.  They are the reason I have three beautiful children.  I would go through it again.  Heck, I want to go through it again!  But I digress.

The simple fact is that I don’t want to go back to my pre-baby body because, for me, that would mean regressing.  To be honest, even though my pregnancies took a toll on my body, it’s is my years of sedentarism before pregnancy that have caused the most damage.

For years, I convinced myself:

  • that I didn’t need physical activity to lead a balanced life;
  • that I just didn’t have time to work out;
  • that I was more of a bookworm and gamer;
  • that it was absolutely fine to spend so many hours sitting each day, every day.

If I could go back in time and talk some sense into myself, I would.  Of course, if I could do that, I probably wouldn’t listen to myself.  I’m, hum – how can I describe it…pridefully independent?  I don’t like receiving unsolicited advice.  I don’t like asking for advice.  I suppose I take it as a challenge to my self-reliance (“what, you think I can’t figure that out on my own?!”).  I like to be in control.

The good news is that I’ve taken control now.  I’m already fitter than I was five years ago.  And though it’s tough sometimes, I’m determined to get my body in decent shape.  In the past, after an injury (as has happened to me recently because of running), I would have just stopped.  Now, I found an alternate activity while I wait to get back on my feet.  In the past, I never would have even considered working out in the evening.  Now, I’ll take the time I have to exercise, even if it is in the evenings.

It’s no secret that to make any change three things are needed: a catalyst, a plan and a great deal of perseverance (at least, in the beginning).  I’ve always been super organized, so making a plan isn’t super difficult for me.  I’m also very stubborn, so perseverance works pretty well for me.  What I was lacking, was a catalyst.

As it turns out, my kids are that kick-in-the butt I needed.  I realized one day that I want to be able to run alongside them with ease as they learned to ride a bike.  I want to be able to play and run around with them without becoming out of breath within 30 seconds.  I want them to know that if you put your mind to something, you can achieve it.  Most of all, I want to do everything in my power to be here, in this world, with them for as many years as possible.  That requires a healthy body.

I’m still a gamer.  I still read.  I find time to crochet and play the flute.  But it’s not all I do now.  Now, I don’t only try to eat a balanced diet (which is something I’ve been pretty good with overall), but I am also working to have a healthy body.

Have you made any major changes to you life recently?  What has been your catalyst?

Posted in Parenting

Polar Bear Bellies

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I don’t know how things are at your house, but around here, Charles always seems to have his most important questions either when I’m on the toilet or driving.  A couple of days ago was no exception.

The conversation started out innocently enough.  Including Charles, there are five kids in his daycare.  He is the oldest and Amélie is the second youngest.  He was telling me that he was bigger than C, who is bigger than Amélie who is bigger than L who is bigger than A.  Now, given that I know that he likes his information to be precise, I decided to add that though his sister was bigger (taller) than L, she was younger than her (albeit only by a couple of months).

I.  Blew.  His.  Mind.

This brought upon a whole new realm of possibilities in his head.

“Is that true?!?”, he exclaimed.

“Yes”, I answered.

“Ok” [pause] “when will C (who is one year younger than he is) be older than me?”, he asked.

“She’ll never be older than you”, I replied.

Wait for it…

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“Why?” he asked.

Bam!

“Well, because when you a baby like Elliot, she was still in her mommy’s belly”, I explained.

Boom!  Mind blown.  Again.

“Mama polar bears can have babies in their bellies too, right?”, he checked

(because, of course, that was the only logical jump to make in the conversation)

“Yes”, I said

“And it’s just the woman polar bears who can have babies in their bellies, right?”, he questioned.

“Yup”, I answered

“And they need the dada polar bears to help them get a baby in their bellies, right?” he continued.

I wasn’t sure I liked where this conversation was going, but I answered anyways:

“Exactly”

“How did you and daddy make babies together?”, he asked.

“Well, um, we went in our room and closed the door”, I said, hoping it would be enough.

“Ok”, he said, apparently satisfied.

The Zootopia song Try Everything played in the background as he pondered what he had learned.  After a few minutes, he was ready to pursue his interrogation.

“How does the baby come out of the mommy’s belly?”, he wondered aloud

(Oh sh*t!)

“Well.  The baby grows inside an organ called the uterus.  When the baby is ready to come out, the uterus contracts and pushes the baby out”, I answered whilst crossing my fingers hoping he didn’t ask where the baby came out from.

He didn’t.

“Does it hurt?”, he asked instead

“Well, it doesn’t hurt the baby, but it can be a little painful for some mommies, sweetheart”, I replied.

“Ok”, he said, seemingly satisfied.

Woah!  These birds and the bees conversations are getting more and more intense each time we have them.  I can’t help but wonder when the next one will come up and which questions will be asked!

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Charles, master interrogator, comfortably seated in his favourite interrogation chamber.  Haha!

When did your kids start asking questions about pregnancy and birth?  How did you answer them?

Posted in Parenting

Reality Check (This Should be Fun)

It occurred to me recently that there are a few differences between my pre-baby conceptions of life and my post-baby reality of life.  I thought it would be fun to write them out here for everyone to laugh at see.

I’m going to become pregnant really easily like my mom.

Yeah…no!  It took my partner and I 18 months and countless ovulation tests before I got pregnant with Charles.  Though, to be fair, becoming pregnant with Amélie and Elliot was as simple as:

  1. Stop breastfeeding and condoms
  2. Have one cycle
  3. Bam!

I’m going to have quick and med-free labours just like my mom.

Apparently, I didn’t learn anything when my first conception flew out the window.  I had an 18 hour labour with my first complete with my waters breaking in bed at 3am, having pitocin administered at 8am, begging for an epidural by 1pm, actually getting it around 3pm and finally pushing the little bugger out after 45 minutes at 6:36pm.

Amélie’s birth went by more quickly shaving off 10 hours from my previous labour.  Though I still did get an epidural.

As for Elliot’s birth (I’m working on a post for it), well, that one was quick.  Though, I did still ask for an epidural.

I’m not going to bed-share with my babies.

Well, to be fair, I didn’t bed-share with Charles.  Amélie, on the other hand, I slept with on the first night we came home from the hospital and a few others after that, especially during night-long feedings during growth-spurts.  As for Elliot, well, I bed-shared with him at the hospital and then a few more times at home after that.

I’m not going to yell at my kids.

Hahaha, ha, HA!  Yeah, have you ever had a 3 year old?

But seriously, I do try to not yell, but sometimes my bag of tools gets depleted.

I’m going to nurse until he’s 6 months old and then stop once his first tooth comes in.

What I failed to realize in this instance was that teeth can cut before the 6 month mark.  And of course, Charles’ did.  At 5 months, to be exact.  The good thing is that since I really wanted to reach the 6 month mark, I kept nursing him and quickly got over the fear I had of nursing a toothed baby.  This led me to nurse both Charles and Amélie all the way up to their first birthday.  I plan to do the same with Elliot!

I’m never going to buy a minivan.  Instead, I’m going to be a cool mom and have a SUV to accommodate my growing family.

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Meet the (very dirty) “mom-mobile” aka, my fourth child.  I seriously love this thing.

I’m going to be very by-the-book.

Though I am very by-the-book (and a little over-the-top, according to some) with regards to car seat safety, I also have to consider the following with regards to the introduction of solids:

  • I chose BLW over purees;
  • I didn’t follow the 3-day rule;
  • I didn’t follow the suggested order of food introduction;
  • I even *gasp* introduced potentially allergenic food like peanut butter, eggs and salmon before the recommended ages.

However, all of these decisions were reached after doing a whole lot of research.

My kids aren’t going to get any screen time before the age of 2…

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I guess the saying “a picture is worth a thousand words” is appropriate here.

…And they’re not going to play with tablets either.

No, of course not [insert ironic tone].

I should note, though, that we have drastically reduced the time our little ones spend with tablets because Charles, in particular, would become very grumpy and irritable whenever we would allow him even a bit of time in front of a tablet.

Charles is going to start rolling over/crawling/walking/talking very quickly.

Because, duh, he’s my firstborn child so of course he’s going to be perfect!

For the record, he rolled from front to back at 5 months, from back to front at 7 months, he crawled at 10 months, walked at 12 months and at 18 months could only say “mama” and “water”.

I am going to cherish every moment.

And, to quote Katherine over at Welcome to the Nursery: “unicorns [will be] literally prancing around […] with me”.

Because, seriously, as much as I cherish motherhood in general, I can’t say I much cherish being peed on, or vomited on, or bitten, or kicked, or, or, or…

I hope you guys had fun reading these!  Feel free to laugh with me and then share some of your own!

Posted in Parenting

What’s Your Cleaning Routine?

Ask my mom how tidy my room was when I was growing up and she’d probably either give you an eyeroll or break out in some form of maniacal laughter.  (Actually, she’d probably tactfully say that it wasn’t one of my strengths but that I had plenty of other strengths) #gottaloveyourmama.

Ask my mom how tidy my house is now that I’m 31 with two and a half kids and she’d probably tactfully say that I’m a great mom and that it’s a good thing that I’m able to let go of the little things.

The truth is, I suck.  Like seriously suck.

I know how to clean, I know how to tidy up, I know it’s important.  I know the tricks.  But darn, I just can’t get my act together.

Problem #1: I am a serious procrastinator.

Last year, when I was still on maternity leave, I figured out a method that actually worked for me.  I started by decluttering (I used the 31 day decluttering guide I found on the Living Well Spending Less website).  Then, I scoured the Web and found a whole bunch of example cleaning schedules.  I mashed a few together, put them on paper and voilà, I had myself a cleaning schedule that worked for me.

Since I couldn’t just do everything in one day as I used to in my pre-kid life, I found that there were two general methods to go about keeping a house clean and tidy.  The first was to go at it room by room (as in, each day, you would tackle a different room).  The second was to go at it task by task.  I opted for the latter as I found it more logical to take care of all the laundry (or window/mirror cleaning, or mopping/vacuuming, or dusting) on the same day.

And it worked!  I was able to keep a clean and tidy house and not go totally nuts with the seemingly monumental-feeling task.

But then, life caught up to me.  I had to go back to work.

Problem #2: I work full-time and often have to bring work home.

Suddenly, I ended up going back to work full-time, juggling two toddlers and becoming pregnant.  (That’s when the procrastinator in me kicked in and determined that the kids, my sanity, some quality time with my partner and my sleep were more important than the tidiness of my house).

But boy oh boy.  Besides the fact that my house regularly looks like it was hit by a tornado, I find myself with horrors like this when I dare look under the couch in the living room.

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This is the most recent stash that I found hiding under the couch.  Notice the can of baby corn to the right which is indicative of my daughter’s newfound passion for emptying the pantry.

Of course, I also find myself picking up toddler boxers all the time because, you know, why play with toys or the food in the pantry when you can just empty out your brother’s boxers and adorn yourself with them (yet another of my daughter’s passions).

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Problem #3: I have an 18 month old and a 3 year old.

Luckily, I do have help.  My partner and brother and the ones responsible for doing the dishes.  We also pretty much split supper duty and my partner’s pretty good at sweeping the floors.

Honestly, I am able to live amongst clutter.  I am fine with seeing dust accumulate on my bookshelves.  I can relax on my couch and see toys littering the floor.  But I would like to become better at housekeeping.  I want to find a balance between being a good teacher, being a good mom and being a good housekeeper without going nuts or burning myself out because…

Problem #4: I’m a perfectionist.

And so, dear readers, I turn to you.

Do you have any suggestions?  What does your cleaning routine look like?  How do you juggle your different responsibilities?

Posted in Parenting

Different

I’ve heard it said too many times to count: no two pregnancies are alike, no two labours are alike, no two children are alike.

Isn’t it true!

Whereas both my pregnancies were very similar, my labours were not.  And the kids!  Oh the kids…

It seems that they are opposites in many ways.

As a newborn, my son cried and whined quite a bit.  He wasn’t colicky, but I remember holding him tummy down over my arm as I walked and walked around the house to try to calm him down.  His tummy hurt quite often as a newborn and I remember that I had to give him lots of tummy massages to help him through the pain.  Of course, that might have something to do with the fact that he had an undiagnosed dairy allergy and I couldn’t get enough of the stuff while I was breastfeeding him.  Poor guy was already on two kinds of cortisone creams and a hydrating cream from the time he was 2 weeks old because his eczema was so bad.

So far, my daughter has been really relaxed.  She hardly cries, isn’t showing any signs of an allergy to something in my milk and besides the normal tummy issues that come with her developing digesting system isn’t too bothered by what goes down down there.

As far as breastfeeding goes, it was an unending marathon with my son.  He would suck at one breast for a good half-hour before sucking at the other breast for another half-hour.  Then, an hour or two later, he would be ready to do it again.  When it came the time for growth spurts, well, he’d be at it from 6pm onwards, sucking away and switching breasts every half-hour until 3am.  If I tried to put him down to sleep (when he inevitably fell asleep at the breast) he would wake up acting as though he hadn’t eaten in days.

My daughter, on the other hand, is a speed nurser.  It isn’t rare for her to be done with her meal in ten minutes.  She very rarely wants anything to do with the other breast once she’s done: she’s content to work on her neck muscles as I try to burp her instead.  Growth spurts for my daughter are also unending marathons…that last for hours on end during the day.  In fact, we just got out of one, in the past two days, little Amélie had hardly slept during the day, instead concentrating on bringing my milk supply back up to par as her needs change.  Oh she would fall asleep at the breast (the only time that happens is during a growth spurt), but I’m sure you can guess what would happen when I would put her down for a nap.

Speaking of sleep…on second thought, let’s not; I wouldn’t want to jinx myself.

Hum, what I will say is that Charles could be rocked to sleep in a jiffy and for a long time I had to work really hard to keep him from falling asleep during car rides (when I needed him to stay awake so that we wouldn’t mess up his nap window).  My daughter, well, let’s just say that rocking is a stimulating activity and car rides seem to be as well, whereas having a toddler running around and playing loudly with his toys near her typically has a soporific effect on her.

As for me, well, it took me a long time to heal and get over the extreme fatigue after giving birth to Charles.  I stayed two nights in the hospital and slept a lot during the first week.  With Amélie, had the doctors allowed it (they didn’t as they had to wait 24h after birth to to a test on Amélie), I would have returned home before supper the day I gave birth.  I was able to move around easily and didn’t feel the fatigue as I had with my first.

Having a first child is a wonderfully terrifying experience.  It’s roller coaster of emotions from learning about the pregnancy to delivering to the first days and everything that comes after. I remember following my pregnancy day by day reading about the development of the baby.  I remember spending hours reading numerous parenting books after giving birth.  I remember googling about everything from low milk supply (because my 2 day old…1 week old…2 week old…) was nursing all the time to oversupply, from poop (what?  He hadn’t pooped in 4 days at one point as a newborn) to sleep (when will he sleep more than two hours at a time?), to milestones (shouldn’t he be able to roll from front to back at 12 weeks!?!), to…well, you get the point.

This time?  This time I am much more relaxed.  I know that things will happen when they will happen.  I know how breastfeeding works.  I know that my daughter is growing well enough that it’s ok if she goes 6h between two feeds at night sometime.  In sum, I know that I have instincts and that I should just trust them.  Because for every child there is in the world, there is a different “book” on parenting.  The basics stay the same, but the small details differ.

You know what’s not different, though?  Love.   I confess that a part of me was afraid as I was nearing my due date.  I mean, my son means the world to me.  I remember being so overwhelmed with love for him in the early days that I would cry.  And, now, I was about to have a second child and a part of me wondered how I would be able to share the love between the two of them.  But you know, I’ve since leaned that your heart only grows with each new child that you add to your family.

Posted in Uncategorized

Playing Second Fiddle

My son was top dog at daycare from the moment he arrived nearly a year ago.  I mean, at 9 months of age, he was by far the youngest.  Besides him, there were two 3 year-olds and two 4 year-olds plus the daycare provider’s 6 year-old (who was there before and after her school day).  He immediately found his place in this setting of older kids and became the center of attention pretty quickly.

Oh mom, daycare was so fun!

He learned very quickly how to play with older kids and even now, a year later, he has prefers to play with three to five year-olds when we go to the park than toddlers his age.  Of course, that’s to be expected since he has only rarely been exposed to kids his age and younger.

A part of this frightens me somewhat.  I mean, he’s going to be a big brother soon and though I know he’s full of love, I’m anxious to see how he will react to sharing attention with a tiny human in the house.

Luckily, I now have a snapshot of how he may react.

You see, the two four year-olds that were at daycare during the last year are starting school this year and one of them has been replaced by an adorable ten month-old little girl who started attending the in-home daycare my son goes to last week.

The first day she was there, the baby was a curiosity.  Charles found her presence amusing at first and was as enthralled by her coming as the other kids were.  He seemed quite ok with her presence and went about his usual business, even allowing his sitter to give her some attention 😉

On the second day, though, when he realized that the baby was probably there to stay, Charles started acting out.  The sitter described him (not without a smirk) as having a good arm and a great aim.  Apparently, Little Dude took to throwing things at the baby when he became frustrated with her.  Oops!

Of course, we talked about this and I was really happy to hear about how she handled the situation.  I have absolutely loved this sitter from day one.  Besides the fact that she very clearly loves the children in her care, she is quite laid-back (she had no problems with the cloth diapers or baby-led weaning approach) and, as I learned last week, we are very much alike in our visions of discipline and child-rearing.

Since she does not believe that a toddler Charles’ age understands the concept of a time-out, she decided to use what she described to me as being the “velcro method” in which she had Little Dude follow her around and help with various tasks.  This worked wonderfully with Charles as he loves to help around (ie: set the table, take the clothes out of the dryer).

On a side note, we actually do use time-outs at home, which we started a couple of months ago when Charles decided to start hitting when he was unhappy.  Though we don’t put him in his room for a set number of time, we do have him go to his room.  We try (I say “try” because, well, we are only human and sometimes just react) to use positive language instead of negative language (ie: “be gentle” instead of “no, don’t hit”) and try to put into words what he is feeling (“I know you’re angry/sad/frustrated…, but please be gentle”).  Then, we tell him that he needs to go calm down and bring him to his room (he’s usually fine after a minute).  After, we remind him of the behavior we want him to have, give him a hug and tell him we love him. 

Things have now gotten to a point where when he starts acting out (ie: before a meltdown happens), we ask him if he needs to calm down and he generally nods, goes to his room on his own, turns on his white noise machine, closes the door and comes back out a minute or two later after turning off his noise machine in a super good mood.  When he’s in full meltdown mode, or has an inappropriate behavior (like hitting), we tell him we think he needs to calm down instead of asking him and he generally goes to his room on his own.  Sometimes, when he feels that he’s losing control, he’ll look at us, say “sleep” and go to his room on his own to calm down. 

*Here’s to hoping I didn’t jinx myself by writing all of this out*

Anyway…back to daycare…

The next day, Charles was much more forgiving with regards to the 10 month-old.  Instead of throwing something at her when he became irritated, he would start repeating “no, baby!” over and over again (in the tone one would use to scold a dog).  Whenever his sitter heard him, she would ask him if he wanted a hug.  He would, of course, always accept the hug and then go back to playing happily…until the baby annoyed him again LOL.  Things are getting better and better every day and Charles doesn’t get annoyed with the baby as quickly now.

I’m actually really happy that a younger child has started daycare as it has given me an idea of what to expect once Peanut arrives and has given me some ideas as to how to deal with Charles when he’s going to act out.  I know that he will be an awesome big brother, but am still expecting him to not be pleased with the crying baby that will be frequently attached to his mom.  I’ve already started to think of some of the things I will do to try to help with the transition:

  • Wear the baby so that I can play with my son while nursing and holding Peanut.
  • Keep sending Charles to daycare 3-4 days per week (we pay for daycare whether he goes or not anyways) so that he can play with his older friends.
  • Have Little Dude help me around the house (grabbing the baby’s clothes, putting the baby’s diaper in the garbage can, helping out with meal preparations…).
  • Restarting swimming lessons so that Charles can have some alone time with one of his parents once a week.

How did your toddler/child react to the arrival of a second (or third…) child?  What did you do to ease the transition?  What have you found to work with regards to disciplining your toddler?

Posted in Ten Thought Tuesday

Ten Thought Tuesday: August 19th

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  1. Wow, already at 38 weeks, I can’t believe I’ll be meeting Peanut in a few weeks time!
  2. Yesterday, I had a checkup with my obgyn.  Baby is firmly head down (and despite being almost ready to come out, Peanut is as active as ever).  I was asked if I wanted a cervical check and declined.
  3. Speaking of cervical checks, did you know that Valerie over at Atlantamomofthree wrote a post on them a while back?  It’s definitely worth a read.
  4. Yesterday, my brother and his girlfriend made an absolutely decadent mac and cheese.  If you’re looking for some comfort food (and really really like cheese), I would definitely recommend it.  Did I mention that it was decadent?
  5. I went out and bought some new shoes for Little Dude yesterday.  It was about time, he went from wearing a size 5 to wearing a size 7 (can you say “growth spurt”!?!).  Once I picked out the shoes, I let him pick the color – he went with his new favourite colour: red.
  6. My partner’s LEGO exhibition went really well last weekend.  You can check here if you want an idea of all the awesome things you can build with LEGO blocks.
  7. This weekend, we’re having friends over for a brunch.  It’ll be really fun as 1. we haven’t seen them in a while and 2.  Charles will be able to play with his 16 month old friend.  We’re borrowing my MIL’s coffee machine for the occasion because neither my partner or I drink the stuff.
  8. Yesterday, the little guy was with his mamie all day.  I took advantage of the fact he wasn’t there to reorganize his toys and do a toy box rotation (we keep one set of toys upstairs, one in the basement and keep one in storage).  He was super excited to rediscover his “new” toys when he got home.
  9. I’ve got a ridiculous amount of bananas in the freezer – I will have to make some banana bread and muffins.  Yummy!
  10. One of Charles’ friends has left the daycare that he attends because she is starting kindergarten.  Her little sister will be taking her place.  I’m eager to see how Charles will react to a smaller baby (10 months old) – he’s always been with older kids at daycare.

If anyone else is doing a TTT today, feel free to link your post in the comments section!

Posted in Blogging, Ten Thought Tuesday

Ten Thought Tuesday: Sleepy

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  1. Ok, so technically, it’s not Tuesday here yet, but since Mr. I-can-fall-asleep-and-start-snoring-within-30-seconds-of-getting-in-bed has done just that, I figured it was as good a time as ever.
  2. To save my sanity and not go totally berserk on him for something over which he has no control, I’ve decided to relegate myself to the basement couch for the night.  The upside is that it’s cooler downstairs than it is upstairs (yay?).
  3. I’m still looking for birth stories to share on my Many Faces of Chilbirth page.  A big thank you to those of you who have already linked or sent a story.  If anyone else is interested, please check out this page for all of the details.
  4. My dental clinic called today to schedule my yearly exam.  They wanted to see me on August 20th.  I told them that I was very pregnant and that later would be better.  I ended up taking an appointment on October 8th.
  5. To help with the natural birth I’m aiming for, my partner has been practicing some massage techniques.   I think that given my couch predicament, he’ll be doing some more practicing tomorrow ;).
  6. This coming weekend, my partner is participating in a miniature train exhibition.  Among AFOL LEGO builders like himself, there will be a whole bunch of other exhibits for trains enthusiasts.  I’ll be going along with Charles so that he can get his fill of trains (and, at the same time, I’ll be there to support my partner in one of his passions – LEGO MOCing).
  7. Everyone around me is betting that Peanut is going to come early.  I think that given that both myself and the dada are stubborn as heck, the little peanut will decide to extend his/her stay just to contradict everyone.  My thoughts: s/he’ll come out when ready.
  8. It was finally warm enough yesterday to warrant going in our pool!  Woohoo!  I think I’ve only been in it about 5 or 6 times since the start of summer so far.
  9. Our few pool visits were enough to get Charles accustomed to the water once again though so I expect that the transition to the swimming lessons we’ll be continuing with him in September will be rather smooth.
  10. Speaking of the little guy, he’s definitely entering the wonderful world of the teenaged-toddler.  It’s both a pleasure and a pain in the butt to see him asserting himself.
Posted in Parenting

Back To the Ecomuseum – A Review

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I know I’ve written about going here before, but I love the place so much that I just had to blog about it again.  (And, for the record, no one is paying me to write about this place, I just feel like sharing my love of it with you guys again).

Little Dude and I went back to the Ecomuseum, last Friday.  This time, we even brought the dada along (because he’s off for three weeks – yay!).  It was an absolutely beautiful day and we got an early start to increase our chances to see more animals.  You see, in summer, the earlier you go the better as when it’s cooler out, the animals are generally out of their shade-filled hiding spots and chillin’ out and about.  And boy did we get to see a lot of animals!

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One thing I love about this place is that it isn’t jam-packed full of tourists.  You don’t have to fight your way up to see an animal and, despite the fact that quite a bit of visitors can be there at any given moment, you never feel crowded.

Another thing I love about the Ecomuseum is that the toddler-paced tour of the place (which, incidentally, resembles very-pregnant-mama pace) takes about two hours to complete.  Trust me, we tried it.

Charles decided to be our tour-guide and walked just a bit ahead of us pretty much the whole time.
Charles decided to be our tour-guide and walked just a bit ahead of us pretty much the whole time.
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Of course, all that walking is tiring, so the leader asked for a few water breaks.

We had many pit stops along the way as we waited for some animals to come out of hiding, looked at some animals, read the information panels and took a few breathers.

Once we were done outside (where you can see the big mammals, the aviary and the birds of prey) we went indoors for the From Day to Night exhibit where we can see both diurnal and nocturnal rodents, amphibians and fish.

What else do I love about this place?

  1. The admission price is very reasonable.
  2. Besides visiting the animals, there are picnic areas and a few paths that you can just take a walk in.
  3. The souvenir boutique also has reasonable prices.
  4. It’s only 15 minutes away from where I live!

What is one of your favourite places to visit with your kids?

Posted in Parenting

Calling All Guest Posters: The Many Faces of Childbirth

We all know that every pregnancy and every birth is different, right.  And, let’s face it, we mamas like to share our birth stories (I’ve yet to meet a mom who isn’t happy to share hers).  Now that my own pregnancy is nearing its end, I thought it would be nice to create a resource for moms-to-be who want to read up on birth through the anecdotal experiences of mamas-who-have-been-there.

If anyone is interested in sharing their story, please shoot me a comment.  If you already have a post about your birth story, just send me the link, tell me which category you believe it fits best into and I will link directly to your blog.  If you would like to send me your birth story, just shoot me an email through the “contact me” page.

Below are some examples of the different categories your personal birth story could fall under.  If you consider that a new one could be added, just let me know.

Home birth

Medicated hospital birth

Med-free hospital birth

Birth in a birthing center

Scheduled C-Section

Emergency C-Section

VBAC

HBAC

Water birth

Giving birth to multiples

So, what do you think?  Anyone up to sharing?