Posted in Ten Thought Tuesday

Ten Thought Tuesday: May 9th 2017

TTT

  1. I am so behind in my blog reading!  I really need to find some time to catch up.
  2. We’ve been dealing with the consequences of floods caused by the unrelenting rain around here.  At our house, we’re fine, but a few blocks away, roads are closed because of flooding.  One of the two bridges that lead to the island of Montreal is closed so traffic is horrendous.  Luckily, the road I take to drive the kids to daycare isn’t affected.
  3. Today is supposed to be the worst day and water levels are supposed to start receding starting tomorrow.  It’s hard to believe, though as this is what is forecasted for the next week.
  4. Despite the crappy weather, we managed to get some time outside when it was nice out (meaning just super cloudy).  The kids went to the park and had some fun.
  5. We had a really busy but super fun weekend.  On Friday, my husband and I managed to go to the restaurant just the two of us.  Then, on Saturday, we went to see our friends to celebrate their son’s birthday party.  Charles, Amélie and Elliot had a blast.    Finally, on Sunday, after going to the pool (Charles and Elliot) and gymnastics (Amélie) classes, we went to my parents’ house for a lovely family brunch.  Afterwards, I went to a ceramic cafe with my two friends for some girls-only time together and they all stayed for supper.
  6. The neon noodles I made last week turned out wonderfully!  My kids gobbled them up.  Well, except Elliot.  He wasn’t impressed and just threw them on the floor.  I just tossed them in garlic butter and served them with sweet and sour chicken and steamed broccoli.IMG_3278
  7. I’ve recently discovered a love for matcha tea.  I went to David’s tea about a week ago and bought some peach matcha.  It is so delicious!  It’s great as a hot latte, just plain hot and is amazing as iced tea (not that I’m drinking much iced tea these days).  I’ve yet to try it as an iced latte, but I’m certain it will be awesome.
  8. I recently read an article on the Dirty Dozen on the David Suzuki website.  I checked through my makeup and realized that everything I own (not that I own much) contains at least one ingredient from the dirty dozen.  Since I’ve been wanting to wear makeup more often, I started researching brands that don’t contain any of the offending ingredients, but I keep coming up short.  I think I’ll just give up and go back to my au naturel look.
  9. I haven’t gone out for a run, or a swim, or done any type of physical activity since last Thursday when I played some squash with my husband.  I am going totally nuts, but I’ve been feeling under the weather recently (thank you dear children and husband for kindly sharing your colds with me) and have been faced with rain and cold temps outside (did I mention that yesterday, it snowed!).
  10. Tonight, I’m planning on making some oven-baked crispy skinned chicken thighs with steamed green beans, pearled barley and an acorn squash puree.  It’s going to be yummy!  What are you eating tonight?

What’s on your mind this Tuesday?

 

Posted in Parenting

What the Heck?

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Watching Cars on my computer after I brought him home early from daycare.

Warning: the following post is a rant.

Let’s play a game shall we?

The papa of a sick child with mysterious symptoms that include raised red blotches all over his body that are hot to the touch calls his pediatrician’s office.  What happens?

He gets told to either make an appointment for three days later, go to a walk in clinic or go to the emergency room of a hospital.

What the heck!?

The mama of a sick child with increasingly mysterious symptoms that include raised red blotches all over his body that are hot to the touch and a low fever calls the free health hotline to try to figure out what’s going on and if the child can wait a few days before seeing a doctor.  What happens?

She gets told to monitor said child’s condition and if symptoms get worse, to go to the pediatrician’s office, a walk in clinic or the emergency room of a hospital.

Sound advice

The mama and papa of an increasingly irritable child with increasingly mysterious symptoms that include raised red blotches all over his body that are hot to the touch, a fever of 103F despite the administration of Tempra an hour previously, loss of appetite and the inability to walk because it hurts decide that it’s time to pay a visit to the local walk in clinic.  What happens?

When the dada arrives with said child, he is told that the schedule is full.  He is told to go to the hospital emergency room if he wants his child to be seen

What the heck!?

The dada drives to the nearest hospital with his child.  What happens?

The triage nurse tells him that he shouldn’t be there with his child,but should have driven an extra half hour to the nearest children’s hospital.

What the f*cking heck!?  Can someone please tell me why the heck i have to give 3500$ in income taxes to our province’s healthcare system if no one is willing to see my 22 month old?

Luckily, she decided that since my son was there, he should probably be treated.

Conclusion?

The doctor didn’t know what he has.

Urgh!

What.

The.

Heck!?

We’re seeing the kiddos’ pediatrician Monday for Amélie’s 1 month appointment.  We’re planning on bringing the toddler along so that we can maybe get an answer to the “what does he have” question.

After some intense googling, my partner and I are starting to think it’s hives.  Anyone else want to wager a guess?

This morning.
This morning.
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, Toddler

Rosy Cheeks

Today was an awesome day!

Since it was a holiday, I was off work (yay!) and it was a beautiful day.  Sunny, hot (but not too hot).  Perfection.  Needless to say, the little guy was thrilled.

You see, he absolutely loves to play outside.  Now that he’s understood that outdoors = fun (because it was kind of hard for him with all the snow this past winter) he wants to go out all the time.  Seriously.  Yesterday morning, he was up at 6:15 am and was asking to go out 15 minutes later.  Dude, let mama wake up, will ya!

Today was no different and he spent loads of time outdoors.  After getting up, we had some breakfast.  Then I got him dressed and we walked his dad to work.  He started getting tired when we were almost home (as the trip to work and back is a little over one kilometer), but he immediately forgot his fatigue when we turned onto our street and he saw the park.

Oh boy, he was excited!  He practically ran to the park and we spent quite some time there on the swings.  Then, he decided to go down the slides over and over and over again.  He wasn’t super pleased when I coaxed him back towards the house, but he didn’t make a big deal over it so it was all good.

Once we were back in the house, he helped me with the laundry (he especially loved handing me the clothes to hang on the clothesline ’cause that meant we were back outside 😉 ) and I phoned my parents to ask them if they wanted to go have a picnic and take a walk with Little Dude and myself.  They, of course, agreed.  I mean seriously, who can resist spending some time with Mr. Cuteness?

Incidentally, it's getting really hard to take pictures of my boy.  As soon as he sees a camera, he comes in as close as possible to try to grab it.
Incidentally, it’s getting really hard to take pictures of my boy. As soon as he sees a camera, he comes in as close as possible to try to grab it.

We ended up going back to the Ecomuseum and, after having some lunch, got to see some of his favourite animals (namely, the turkeys).  Once again, he walked almost the whole way despite the fact that we had already passed his nap time.  He was tired, but also wildly happy about observing everything around him which meant that he wasn’t cranky.

Quite predictably, Charles fell asleep in the car and wasn’t very pleased with me when I changed his extremely wet diaper (the little guy drinks so much when it’s hot out and our bamboo inserts just aren’t cutting it), but went down for his belated nap happily.

I woke him after two hours and off we went again to get daddy from his workplace.  This time, though, I brought the stroller along and Little Dude was grateful for the ride.  We stayed outside when we got home and helped the dada start setting things up in the yard.  Charles and I cleaned the patio set while we let his father do the heavy lifting.

Of course, every good thing must come to an end and though we had spent some (read: a LOT of hours of) good time outside, it was time to get in, have supper and get the bedtime routine rolling.

This is how happy my son was with me when I brought him back inside.

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But why can’t we stay outside just a little while longer?

He did end up calming down when I took out the DS for him to play with and he ate like an ogre at supper.  And now, after chattering a storm in his crib for the last hour, he’s finally asleep.

Posted in Blogging

Share it Sunday : Pouding Chômeur (dairy-free)

Today, I thought I’d share a dairy-free version of a traditional french-Canadian dessert: the pouding chômeur (or poor man’s pudding cake).

I love this one because it brings back childhood memories.  You see, this dessert is one of the desserts that my mom made when I was younger.  You can bet that when she made it, it never lasted very long despite the fact that she’d make a double batch.

Translated literally, “pouding chômeur” means pudding for the unemployed.  As the name implies, it is very inexpensive to make.  Besides the fact that it doesn’t require any special or expensive ingredients, it is tasty and very easy to make (a child could likely carry out the majority of the steps alone).

Are you curious to know how to make it?

Pouding Chômeur (serves 6)

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Ingredients

For the cake

375 ml (1 1/2 cup):  all purpose flour
180 ml (3/4 cup):     dark brown sugar
15 ml (1 tbsp.):        baking powder
2.5 ml (1/2 tsp.):      salt
45 ml (3 tbsp):         coconut oil, melted
180 ml (3/4 cup):     coconut milk
5 ml (1 tsp.):            vanilla extract

For the sauce

125 ml (1/2 cup):    dark brown sugar
500 ml (2 cups):     boiling water

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a bowl, combine dry ingredients.
  3. In the same bowl, add wet ingredients.  Mix until you obtain a ball of dough.
  4. Place the dough in an oven-safe pan, making sure to spread it to cover the bottom of the pan.
  5. Spread the dark brown sugar (for the sauce) over the ball of dough.  Carefully pour boiling water on top.
  6. Bake for 40 minutes, or until the center is cooked through.

I should probably warn you.  This dessert doesn’t look like much.  In fact, when you pour the boiling water over the whole thing before putting it in the oven, you’re probably going to wonder how in the world it can yield something edible, let alone tasty.  But trust me, it works.

Enjoy!

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Oh, and for those of you who would like a printable pdf, just click on the text link beside the thumbnail of the recipe.

 

Dairy-free Pouding Chômeur

 

 

Dairy-free Pouding Chômeur (PDF)

 

 

 

Anyone else up to sharing a traditional and/or childhood meal?

Posted in Parenting

Our Trip to the Ecomuseum

Today, I decided to bring my son with me to visit the Ecomuseum zoo.  You see, now that spring seems to finally be here, he has been absolutely fascinated by the wildlife that he can observe through the various windows in the house.  He gets all excited when he sees birds and squirrels and such so I figured a zoo would be a great place to bring him.

He had a blast!

The ecomuseum is open throughout the year and allows visitors to see all of the wonderful animals (mammals and reptiles alike) that we can find throughout Quebec’s St. Lawrence Valley.  There are so many species to see and the site is quite large.

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After paying my 15$ admission fee (my son got in free because he is under 2 years of age), we were immediately greeted by a man holding a small snake.  After assuring him that my son wasn’t afraid of snakes (I mean, we do have reptiles at home), he started talking about the snake to my son.  Even though Charles didn’t understand what the man was talking about, he was captivated and dividing his attention between the man and the snake.

After that, we went outside.  We saw a whole bunch of animals ranging from the snowy owl, to the common raven.  We saw an American porcupine, an arctic fox, raccoons, a white-tailed deer.

After walking outside for a good hour with the little guy (who was such a sweetheart; he held my hand the whole time as we went from animal to animal), we went back inside to see the fish, turtles, snakes and some rodents doing their thing in a nighttime setting.

When we were ready to leave, I let him choose a stuffed animal in the gift shop.  He was tired, but totally happy when we got to the car.

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Of course, in the 15 minute drive that brought us back home, the little guy fell asleep.  Perhaps it had something to do with all the walking he did *whistles innocently*.

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Posted in Blogging, Ten Thought Tuesday

Ten Thought Tuesday: Spring

TTT

  1. Well, spring has finally gained the upper hand on winter (yay!).
  2. Because of this, though, the fields look like lakes and part of the road I use to drive my son to daycare was closed this morning because it was flooded.
  3. But it’s all good.  We bought the little guy some rain boots.  I can’t wait to bring him out to play in the puddles!
  4. I’ve been off work for almost two weeks now and I’m finally starting to feel better.  I’m not as tired anymore and I think I’m getting over the darned cold that too a hold of me last week.
  5. I’m so excited because I finally got invited to a campaign as a BzzAgent!  The campaign only starts on April 21st, so look out for a post on the product I’ll be getting a chance to try for free and review by the end of the month.
  6. Yesterday was election day in Quebec.  The last time there were provincial elections, I was pregnant too.  Kind of a funny coincidence.
  7. It’s funny how perception of time works.  On the one hand, I look at my son and am in awe that he’s already 16 months old.  I feel like time flies by when I look at him.  On the other hand, I feel like time is crawling when I think that I am 19 weeks into my pregnancy.  I guess I’m just excited that another baby is on the way.
  8. Oh!  I’ve got another awesome guest post ready for you guys tomorrow.
  9. Tonight, we’re eating maple-glazed pork chops.  Yummy!
  10. Hum, that’s weird, my brain can’t connect the dots for another random thought.  Oh well, perhaps you’ll get eleven the next time ’round.

Happy Tuesday everyone!

Posted in Parenting

To Doula Or Not To Doula?

It’s a question that I’ve been asking myself for a little while now.  In fact, I started wondering about this shortly after giving birth to Charles.

You see, though his birth went well, there are a few things that bugged me about the whole process and now that I’m pregnant again, I would like for Peanut’s birth to be different in some regards.  I know I don’t have control over everything that goes on, but I would like to keep what control I do have when I’m going to go into labour.

For instance, with Charles, I had initially thought of going for a home water birth with a midwife.  After discussing this option with my partner though, we ended up deciding upon a hospital birth.  Since this was our first experience with birth and so had no idea what to expect exactly, we ended up concluding that we’d be safer in a hospital environment in case anything went awry.

I had also filled out a birth plan in which I had decided that I wanted the least amount of interventions.  I was gunning for a med-free birth.  However, when my water broke during the night at 40 weeks, I followed hospital procedure, gave the labour and delivery wing a call and we made our way there at 3am.  I started to have very weak contractions for the first time in my pregnancy (no Braxton Hicks for me, it seems) on the way there.  Upon arrival, I was checked (I was 1/2 a cm dilated!), strapped to monitors and told to try to get some sleep until 8am when the first ob/gyn would start their shift.

I listened to the nurse and managed to squeeze in a few more hours of shut-eye that night.  Then, at 8am, when the nurse realized that my contractions had become weaker and more spaced out, I was started on the hell that is Pitocin.

Had I known that I’d be leaving the comfort of my bed to go to a hospital bed, I probably would have stayed home.  In fact, had I known that moving about was likely to get my contractions going naturally, I probably would have stayed away from my bed and done just that: move (cleaning the house or even going out for a walk).

I pretty much stayed strapped to my hospital bed during labour as I tried to work through the pain of the contractions.  By 1pm, I was going into shock from the pain and was given an epidural (poor anesthetist who had to get his job done through my uncontrollable back muscle spasms).  After that, it was pretty much smooth sailing until I delivered at 6:26pm.

Now this time around, I can’t have a midwife.  You see, out here in Quebec, there are only 15 midwifes that graduate annually.   Here is a great article about the reality of natural birth with a midwife here.

Anyway, that got me thinking about having a doula this time around.  A doula, or labour coach, can be hired to help a mother/family before, during and after delivery.  Befor labour, they can help with a birth plan and preparing older children to the arrival or a new sibling.  During labour, they can provide physical assistance by the means of massage or just suggesting different birthing positions and emotional support.

I’ve actually started researching doulas and have found a few that have experience, references, a doula certification and other types of training (massage, rebozo…).  Now, I just have to call to see how much a doula costs.

I still haven’t made up my mind yet though, because I *did* enjoy having just my partner (and medical staff that kept popping in and out) with me during my son’s birth.

Did you consider a doula for one of your births?  Did you ever consider hiring one?