Thursday, December 27, 2007

Our first Christmas

The week before Christmas was a busy one. Maddie and I spent a lot of time finishing up the shopping and cleaning up the house. On Saturday we headed to Ikea as a family to buy the bookcases for the front room - they ended up being a bit larger than we expected, so instead of piling the boxes into our car, we opted for the $69 delivery service - they arrive this Saturday - woo hoo!

After Ikea, we headed down to Rob & Vone's to wish them a very merry and drop off some xmas baking ... after a few hours visiting w/ the Emmy's, we headed back home with just enough time to get dressed, get Maddie changed and head over to Greg & Liz's for an early holiday dinner. Liz had her family visiting, an Greg's mom was there - so it was a full house. Maddie was passed around to many welcome sets of arms (here she is with Liz's dad - he was nice enough to hold her while I ate dinner!) and continued her streak of acting like a superstar - I'm hoping this streak never ends, it's always nice to have a non-crying baby when out visiting!

Here's a pic of Maddie with Mommy - taken before I changed her into her sleeper - how cute is that dress and the tights with the red shoes painted on?

Sunday was a very busy day as I went out to do some last minute shopping while Seth watched Maddie. Then after a quick dinner we spent the evening cleaning the house up to be ready for his parents who were arriving the next day to spend Christmas with us.

Poor Seth had to work a half day on Monday (Christmas Eve) and didn't get home until around 4 that afternoon. His parents arrived around noon - which was just before I was about to head out with Maddie to the butcher to pick up the roast (yes, we were blasphemous and had a roast beef for Christmas dinner, not turkey - shocker!). So Shorty and I headed out to the butcher and Grandma Vallier got some alone time with Maddie. Once we got back, I spent the rest of the afternoon getting the appetizers ready for the small get together we were hosting that evening - Greg and Liz were coming over with Greg's brother and sister-in-law, and his mom. Grandma V had brought a tonne of frozen appetizers as well, so it was a good spread. Everyone arrived around 7:30pm and we all enjoyed some "Christmas Cheer" and the munchies and chit-chatted until they left around 11pm or so.

Christmas morning came around 8:30 - Maddie's regular wake-up time and we got her up, changed and fed her as quickly as possible to try and give her the presents that Santa brought in her stocking before she fell asleep again (she likes to sleep in the mornings - A LOT!). Here's a pic of Maddie with her stocking - ignore the bedhead on the two of us! We managed to keep her interested in everything that Santa brought before she drifted off to sleep, which allowed us to open our stockings and have some morning coffee before she was back up. We unloaded the tree and then Seth went to make breakfast while I went to have a bath. After a late breakfast (brunch?) we all sat down to watch a movie and relax a bit. I put the roast beef in around 3-ish and got the potatoes and other sides ready to go.

After only a couple of hours, my first 'classic' roast was done to perfection - medium rare, just like a prime rib roast should be! Along with, we had whipped potatoes (thanks Debbie!), roasted asparagus spears with lemon, steamed green + yellow beans then sautéed with olive oil and slivered almonds, and last but not least, yorkshire puddings. I think for my first official Christmas Dinner, I did a pretty good job. Even got a Christmas pudding for dessert, in keeping with the apparent British theme to dinner - too bad that was kind of gross. Oh well, next year I will actually make one - didn't realize you needed to start it a month in advance.

Boxing Day was spent as many Boxing Days in Canada are I think - watching movies and the Juniors hockey. Grandma and Grandpa V left around 7pm and we gave Maddie a bath and then went to bed shortly thereafter - Seth had to work the next day, and to be honest we were all pretty tired.

So that's our first Christmas in a nutshell - it was enjoyable to finally be able to host a Christmas, and of course unforgettable with Maddie - even if she won't remember it, we always will!


Edited to add: Here's Maddie's pic of her with Santa - meant to scan this in a while ago - pretty cute for a 10 week old - she looks like she likes him - I'm sure she won't be so cheerful next year!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

A weekend of firsts

After such a busy week, Maddie and I had a lazy day on Friday - not accomplishing much of anything. Although I did get to go out with an old colleague of mine for a few drinks while Seth took care of her in the evening. I was only gone for 3 hours, and it felt like days - I know I'm going to have to get better about leaving her with other people, but for some reason I feel so guilty every time I leave the house without her. Of course, I came home and both Daddy and Maddie were asleep in the bedroom - clearly they really don't need me as much as I think they do - haha! But it was good that she wasn't too hard on him that evening - he did her bathtime on his own and gave her a bottle before getting her down to sleep - doesn't sound like much, but a big improvement from just a week ago, when she would have cried almost the entire time.

Saturday morning Maddie and I were up early to go out shopping with Liz - we hit the Pickering Town Centre and some other shops - got a tonne of Xmas shopping done and may have even picked up a few things for myself (oops). Came home and played with Maddie upstairs while Seth was napping - we were doing tummy time and she rolled over for the very first time on her own (from tummy to back). She hasn't done it since - but I'm sure she will again - she's holding her head up so high now on her tummy, that's all she needed to get the momentum of getting over - it's a small thing, but I'm so proud of our growing little girl!

So, after Seth got up from his nap, we each got ready for the Christmas Party we were attending. It was in the city, and the weather forecast was calling for a big winter storm, but as it wasn't snowing when it was time to leave, we decided to chance it and head into the city. The roads started to get sloppy as we got into Toronto, but the snow really hadn't started falling all that much - all in all, we got lucky and were able to enjoy a few hours at the party before heading home. It was nice to see some friends we hadn't seen in a long while and I enjoyed a few glasses of vino (Seth insisted on driving - I'm not that selfish!) ... Once again Maddie was a superstar and totally behaved and acted chill all night. Here she is hanging out with Daddy at the party - her shirt says "Angel with an attitude" - and you gotta love the mini-Adidas shoes! PS - yes, that's Mommy's wine glass in the bottom left corner of the pic!

Since we got home kinda late last night, we had a bit of a family lie-in this morning - Maddie sharing the bed with us - I think we slept in until like 11am. She woke up in a super good mood (as she always is with Daddy on Sunday mornings) - giving out smiles and she even gave Seth a few giggles - another first for her. Two in one weekend! She hasn't really laughed for me yet, but that's okay that she shared that one with her Daddy. :)

And when we finally did get out of bed and look outside, we realized it was a total winter wonderland! The snow that started last night must have continued to fall - and it's still snowing fairly hard now - I think we have about 1-2 feet of snow out there. I just took a long leisurly bath, and came down downstairs to find Daddy and Maddie napping on the couch - here she is all curled up on him - love how she sticks out her bum when she sleeps!

Going to wait until she wakes up and then taking her outside in her snowsuit to get a pic of her with her first "snowfall".

Edited - we did get her all bundled up to take her outside for 1 minute to get some pics - it was blowing snow everywhere and Seth was worried that it was too cold for her so shooed us back inside while he shoveled the driveway - but here's the couple of pics that he took of me and my little bundled up boo before he made me take her back inside...


Thursday, December 13, 2007

Xmas baking and shopping

The rest of last week went by in a bit of a blur. Wednesday we made a trip to Markville Mall to exchange Maddie's xmas dress at the Children's Place - they didn't have her size in the plaid one so we exchanged for an adorable little red dress w/ a white bow - she looks quite cute in it. We popped into Baby Gap and picked up white leotards with little red shoes painted on them - instead of wearing actual shoes. Doesn't sound that good - but honestly, I can't believe these weren't invented before.

Thursday we were back in the city - I had a doctor's appointment and then we met Rob for lunch. It was Maddie's first real restaurant meal - she was so well-behaved (as usual - honestly, she's so easy to take anywhere, I'm spoiled) - and we got all sorts of compliments from the older women at the tables next to us - how beautiful she was (of course!) and how she's so sweet (again, natch). Since we were at the Eaton Centre, we did a bit more xmas shopping there before we left - didn't get much except some cute stocking hangers from Pottery Barn - to go on our fireplace mantel.

Friday night our friends Greg and Liz came over for some socializing and drinks - didn't stay that late, but long enough to make some plans to head to the States in January to take advantage of the strong Cdn dollar and do some after xmas sale shopping at the outlets. Should be fun...

Saturday morning we were up super early to head into the city to meet my friend Tracy at the Umbra factory sale. The lineup was incredibly long - even at 9am - but luckily she had gotten there earlier and was saving us a place in line. She also gave us the CD of photos she had taken the weekend before - which were absolutely amazing. She was also sweet enough to bring Maddie a gift - the "Night Before Christmas" book - and told us how a friend of hers had a family tradition of reading that every Christmas Eve. It will be interesting to see what kind of traditions we start (and keep) now that Maddie's here...

So after buying a tonne of frames and photo albums (only $10 each!!!) at the sale, Seth and I drove Tracy home and headed back to Brooklin as my mom was scheduled to be there by 1pm. Once she arrived that afternoon we visited with her and then we all took a nap before getting ready to go out for dinner for Mom's birthday. We ended up going down to Jack Astor's - which was good food, but incredibly loud for us (god that statement makes me feel so old!). Here's a pic of Maddie in her cute H&M dress she wore for Gram's birthday dinner.

This week, Mom and I have done the Christmas baking - although even with two of us, it was still difficult to be productive with Maddie around. But we managed to make 4 types of cookies, 2 types of fudge, chocolates, turtles and 2 types of balls over the past four days - so I guess we did alright.

Today we went to the Pickering Town Centre to do some Christmas shopping and to get Maddie's picture taken with Santa. As always, she was a super-star while we were out and the pic w/ Santa is adorable.

This weekend we have a Christmas party to attend on Saturday night and hopefully will finish up our shopping on Sunday. That's the plan anyway...


Monday, December 3, 2007

Model behaviour

The end of last week was busy for us. On Thursday Auntie Liz came over to visit with us girls while Seth went out with Greg to watch the football game. We went to the nearby Thai place to pick up dinner, chatted for a bit while Maddie gave Auntie Liz all sorts of cuddles - to the point of falling asleep - until bathtime that is.

We spent Friday evening cleaning up and preparing for the weekend - my friend Tracy was coming over Saturday morning to take some pics of Maddie. The "photoshoot" went really well - no big surprise what everyone's Christmas gift is going to be this year! Here's a sample of some of the shots she took - they look so good, I'm really happy with the results. We're getting the full CD of all the shots next weekend, so I'll try to get them uploaded to Flickr soon.

Saturday night we were invited to Rob & Vone's for dinner - along with 2 other couples - it was a blast and was my first 'official' night out with drinks involved. I ended up having 5 beers (don't worry, Maddie had some bottles, I wasn't feeding her alc-milk) and definitely was paying for it the next morning. After 10 months of tee-tolling, that many drinks can really hit you hard - especially when you have 7 week old waking up every 2 hours in her cradle beside your bed.

But regardless of the hangover - it was a blast to be out and 'social' again. And Maddie was so well-behaved (again! always such a star when we go anywhere, I love it!) - she got all sorts of compliments.

Sunday morning came early though, with Grandma and Grandpa Vallier arriving at 10am for their visit. They were nice enough to bring the Christmas tree and decorations that my mom gave to us (she's downgrading her tree this year, so we get the big tree - saves us buying it - woo hoo!) ... so I spent the afternoon decorating the tree while Seth and his dad shovelled the driveway (lots of snow overnight) and put up the outside lights (and Grandma held Maddie - she liked her job!). I would say that we are officially ready for Christmas now - well, decorated for it already anyways. I can't believe that I haven't got any of my shopping done yet - it's not like me to leave it so late - that is my mission for this week, to get some of it done finally.

Today was Maddie's 8 week doctor's appointment, which included her first immunization shots. She weighed in at 10 lbs 1/2 oz (which seems down from last week's weight - but that was at a different doc's office on a manual scale - so I'm going to chalk that weight up to an anomaly - different scales probably are a bit different) - she also grew some more in length - she's now 58 centimeters long (almost 23 inches). That wasn't a shocker as she's grown out of so many sleepers already.

She took her shots like a champ - a little bit of crying, but calmed down pretty quickly as soon as they were over. We left the doctor's office to do a bit of shopping and she was great in Ikea, but when I got to the mall she started to get a little whiny. I thought maybe she was hungry, but she didn't want food - she just cried and cried and cried. I guess it was a delayed reaction to the shots - the doctor warned me she might be a bit grumpy for the rest of the day - she didn't say that she would be inconsolable for almost an hour. I finally got her chilled out a bit and hunted down Shoppers Drug Mart to get some baby Motrin - that seemed to do the trick, she's still a bit whiny, but definitely not in pain anymore. Poor thing.

So the plan for the rest of the week is to get some Christmas shopping done, get her picture with Santa (after finding a Christmas dress - Grandma Vallier got her one, but it's too big and so we just have to hunt down the right size to make an exchange before we go see Santa). This weekend Grandma Thompson is coming to visit for a few days so we can get our Christmas baking done - that's pretty much the plan for the coming weekend and next week...

I'll leave you with a pic of Maddie with Grandma Vallier in front of our Christmas tree...


Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Her first cold

Last week was a super busy one for us - Monday saw Maddie and I attending a 'mommy and me' class - hosted by the same teacher that taught our prenatal classes - it was interesting and we learned a few things, and it was definitely cool being around a bunch of new moms, but since it was in the city, the drive was a bit much for us. And while it would have been nice to make some new friends, they all lived in the city and I was the only one in the 'burbs, so I don't think I would have ended up seeing much of them. It did motivate me to try and find some similar classes/groups up here in the Durham region (well, motivate me to be interested in finding some, not that I've actually done anything about it yet!).

Wednesday was another day in the city - we had a few doctors appointments - one in the morning with Maddie's doctor to check her for thrush (yup, she has it - and is now on a 10-day treatment of niacin - antibiotics). At noon we headed to the Suzy office to introduce Maddie to my colleagues - everyone thought she was gorgeous (of course!) and sooo well-behaved (she makes such a good first impression!). We then headed down to Mt Sinai for my doctor's appt - the doc was running behind schedule, so we had to wait for almost an hour, just to pretty much be told, okay - glad you're feeling well - nice knowin' ya. After a big long feed, we were back on the road, just in time to hit full rush-hour traffic - it took us 2 hours to get home - nightmare.

Seth got off work early on Friday and we headed out to do some grocery shopping and other errands - we were home by 7pm and in bed just a few hours later - as we had an early morning planned - had to tidy up for Mom and Walt as they were visiting for the day on Saturday. We had a good visit and Maddie was well-behaved (as usual sleeping through most of it!) - and Grandpa Walt helped us by cutting a hole in our door for our cats to get into the basement - so the door doesn't have to be propped open anymore! Too bad we couldn't find a cat door that would allow fat Simon to jump through - so for now that hole is just open - we'll eventually figure out some kind of door for it.

On Sunday Maddie and I went shopping with Auntie Liz for xmas decorations for the front of the house - we got lucky at Cdn Tire as they were having a huge sale and we got all sorts of lights, garland etc. I wrapped the garland around our front porch and attached mini-lights. Seth then went out to put up the lights on the eavestrough - but because they were backed up (and that water had subsequently frozen), he couldn't get the clips attached, so we still need to get those lights up - hopefully this weekend.

This week has been a lazy one so far. Poor Maddie came down with her first cold on Monday - she's really stuffed up and sneezing/coughing all over the place. Her one eye was tearing up on Monday a lot and when we got up on Tuesday it has crusted shut (ewww!) - so we headed to the walk-in clinic that night and the dr prescribed her antibiotic drops to circumvent any infection. So the poor thing is on 2 medications now and has a cold to boot - and I have to say she's handling it like a champion. And sleeping a lot more - which I'm not sure is due to the cold or just her becoming a class A sleeper - hopefully the latter and hopefully it lasts!

She is officially 7 weeks (this past Tuesday) and has grown so much I can't believe it. She started giving full smiles (not random ones - actually giving them out when you ask for them now!) on Sunday, and I swear she laughed today during her conversation with the bears that hang above her swing. She loves talking to her mobiles - she really gives them hell sometimes - and it's funny to hear her gurgling away as I do things in the kitchen - too cute.

We also had to put a bunch more sleepers into the 'doesn't fit anymore bin' this week - I'm not sure how much she's grown - but I swear at least another inch. She was 10 lbs 7 oz as of last Monday (Nov 19th) and I wouldn't be surprised if she's up to at least 11 lbs this week. She definitely has lost that lean look she had for the first few weeks of life though - while she's still tiny, she definitely is chunking up with baby fat nicely. Her little thighs are like tiny little sausages you just want to eat up!

Not only is she growing and learning things at an astonishing rate (she found her hand this week - so she sucks on her fist whenever she's tired - not just a thumb will satisfy her, has to be the whole fist!) ... but she's also developing the cutest personality. She is definitely a morning person - giving out all sorts of coos and smiles during her morning diaper change and being a generally happy cuddly baby. Although she does get super happy every time her diaper is changed - or maybe she just likes to be naked - can't decide which. And when she's tired, she rubs her eyes and yawns like a little person - and then gets super cuddly - really, she'll cry just to be picked up and cuddled in before she goes to sleep.

She's currently working on learning how to roll over - she tries pretty much every time we do a Tummy Time session, lifting her leg and swinging it backward, but she's hasn't worked up enough momentum yet - but I'm sure it will happen soon.

I have to say (and hopefully am not jinxing us) - but we got really lucky in the baby department - her temperment is really happy and easy-going (clearly takes after her daddy, not me!). And of course she gets more gorgeous every day - her eyes are definitely going to be brown - but the verdict is still out on the hair - she is losing more and more every day - let's hope she doesn't turn into a total baldy.

This weekend is going to be busy - we have a baby/family photoshoot with an old friend on Saturday afternoon, and Saturday evening we're going out to a friend's house for dinner. That will be fun as Seth is DD'ing and I get to have a few drinks for the first time in almost a year - don't worry, Maddie will be drinking a few bottles that night of breastmilk that I've stocked up - we don't need to introduce her to the sauce just yet. Sunday we have Grandma and Grandpa Vallier coming to visit for the day - so it's a full weekend for us - let's hope Maddie's good nature keeps up!


Sunday, November 18, 2007

The amazing sleeping baby!

The growth spurt that I was mentioning in the last post culminated in a rough Monday for me as all she wanted to do was feed - constantly! Good thing we picked up a tv/dvd player for the bedroom on Sunday - so I didn't have to leave our bedroom on Monday. Literally watched a tonne of movies and tried to get some sleep when Maddie did.

The growth spurt didn't do much for her stretching her feedings out to every 3 hours - for some reason she's an every 2 hour baby - I think we have a touch of thrush (in her mouth) which may be affecting it, and making her gassy, so we'll have that checked out by the Dr this week.

But we are now consistently getting 4-5 hour stretches of sleep at the beginning of the night now. We've finally fallen into a consistent routine - Seth gets home around 7:15, he helps get dinner ready + we eat while Maddie sits and watches us from her swing. Then we watch a bit of tv while Maddie naps + eats - head upstairs around 9-ish for Maddie's bath. Then she gets a baby massage and we do a bit of tummy time - that brings us to around 10 - I try to feed her again to 'tank her up' and put her down in her cradle. Then she sleeps until 2 or so and wakes for another feeding (and then we're up every 1-2 hours from there - but still, that 4+ hours at the beginning of the night has just given me a new lease on life - I guess one cycle of REM sleep really does wonders for a person!)...

What else can I tell you about the week - the days seem to blend together and the weeks are flying by (not really flying, but just melting away in a haze) ... Seth got very sick and was off work for a day - just a terrible cold, but he was sleeping in the spare room to make sure he didn't pass it along to Maddie - and so he could get uninterrupted sleep - lucky guy, even if he was sick!

I finally got her room organized and all the gifts from the Kingston shower put away and her crib set up with the new mobile and stuff. She loved it - take a look at the pic of her enjoying herself. We went out for a big walk on Wednesday (she slept REALLY well that night - I really wish that winter wasn't coming and we could go out like that more often!). On Friday we had our first "lunch date" with an old colleague from mine - met at Markville Mall and did a bit of shopping (window shopping, no $$ to actually buy anything on our new budget!).

That's about it - Seth had to work yesterday (Saturday) so Maddie and I had a bit of a quiet day - then when Seth got home he took her so I could take a bubble bath - my first alone time all week (as he was sick, wasn't holding her at all - I have tonnes of respect for single parents out there now - it was a tough couple of days not being able to 'hand her off'). The bath was delicious and when I was done Maddie I took a 2 hour nap while Seth raked up the leaves from our trees in the front and back yards. Last night we watched a movie and were in bed by 11 - wow, the exciting life of new parents.

Today is a bit of a milestone though - I have a date with Liz to go out for the afternoon - the ENTIRE afternoon! So we've taken a bottle out of the freezer for Seth to feed Maddie with and I am going out without her. It's weird and I'm nervous about it (I know they'll be fine - but this is my first time leaving her for an extended period of time - god, I got my hair cut when my mom was up and left her for only an hour and was nervous the whole time). But this means I get to go to a movie and do some xmas shopping and you know, enjoy a bit of freedom. It will be weird, I'll let you know how it goes.

Leaving you with some pics of our munchkin - holding up her head like a big girl during one of our 'tummy times' this week. Oh and couldn't resist posting her shoe collection - she's definitely mommy's girl - look at that collection so far! I can't wait to start seeing them on her - although you'll see in the pic above (in her crib) she's wearing her first pair with her little dress - she was all dressed up for our Friday lunch date - so cute! For more pics take a look at our Flickr site ( - we'll continue updating that.


Sunday, November 11, 2007

Feeding frenzy

The weekend after the last post Maddie and I spent in Kingston for a meet + greet shower that my Mom hosted. Not going to lie to you - the drive to Kingston with a 3-1/2 week old is not something I would happily repeat. Something that should have only taken a couple of hours (at most) turned into a 4 hour exhausting drive due to rush hour traffic and a 1/2 hour feeding that had to take place at the rest stop in Trenton.

It was nice to see everyone though, and for Maddie to meet everyone (and be SPOILED with presents). But I learned a few things... a) she doesn't like her playpen for sleeping, b) she will however sleep in her carseat - um, ok whatever works, and c) she will also sleep forever folded up like a pretzel in the baby sling I bought.

Because Friday night was a sleepless one, I kept Maddie in the sling for the most part of the shower - otherwise I think there would have been one FUSSY baby on my hands for the afternoon. So she slept through most of her shower - but as the end of the shower coincided with her feeding time, she did make an appearance right at the very end and got passed around to many women's arms in a matter of minutes. She handled all the attention like a champ and then fed for almost 45 minutes - I guess all the love makes one hungry!

Saturday night was a bit better for sleeping - probably because I didn't even try to get her to sleep in her play pen, instead letting her (gasp!) co-sleep with me in the bed ... whatever works people, whatever works. It's so funny how you can have pre-conceived notions of things you would never do with your baby that quickly get ignored when you realize it could give you a blessed 2 hours of sleep. 2 solid hours? Like heaven in a jar...

So that was our weekend - on Sunday Gramma Vallier joined us on the trip back to Brooklin as she was coming up to stay for the week with us. She spent the week cuddling Maddie and making Seth and I dinner - needless to say we were all quite spoiled.

And she got to join us at Maddie's 4-week doctor's appointment - yes, our little girl turned 4 weeks on Tuesday (Nov 6th) - wow how the time has flown by! For the record, she was 9 lbs 8 oz and measured 21-3/4 inches. That's over 2 lbs gained (from her 7 lbs 3 oz birth weight) and almost 2 inches grown (she was just over 20 inches when she was born) - who says breastfed babies are scrawny!

Seth had this Friday off and so we headed into the "city" to attend the Baby + Toddler show at the MTTC. We almost didn't go as Maddie was clearly starting a growth spurt and was feeding every hour to hour and a half, but then thought we might as well go and see what free samples we could get. Well, the show was nothing like the one that I had attended back in the spring when I was pregnant - it was smaller and had very little in the way of free samples. It would have been a great show if we were going to shop - lots of cool little vendors selling some adorable things, but luckily we had left our wallets in the car.

Anyways, after a little over an hour, we called it quits and headed back out of the city. Unfortunately it was 3:30pm on a Friday afternoon, so it took us 2.5 hours to get home (that's with a few feeding stops for Maddie - watching her cry for food while on the DVP was heartbreaking - again, not a trip that I will happily do anytime in the near future).

Not sure if it was number of feeds that she had that day, or the exhaustion of the 'outing' to the city, but for the first time ever, she slept for 4 straight hours that night (10-2am) ... not that there was a tonne of straight sleep after that 4 hours, but still, 4 hours feels like 8 right now. And she had a great Saturday - very happy and content, although still feeding like a lion. We visited Uncle Greg and Auntie Liz for a few hours on Saturday night - our first social outing as a family, sad but true! Lots of fun though, Auntie Liz kept Maddie amused while Greg showed us their latest Wii game - almost felt like a normal Saturday night, except we left at 9:30pm and were exhausted.

We got another 4 hour sleep out of her last night as well - maybe we're actually getting into some kind of routine here? Not sure - don't want to speculate as I might jinx it. She was up and raring to go this morning at 6am though - and our big milestone for the day was daddy giving Maddie her first bottle. I thought she might fight him on the bottle at first, but she took to it like a champ - made me feel a little sad actually - who woulda thought I could be so easily replaced? Kidding...

So there you go - that's the updates in our lives right now - I'm convinced she's grown another inch just this weekend if this growth spurt is anything to go by. I will try to measure her this week and let you all know. In the meantime - here's a few more pics from the past week - you can see she starting to lose her hair - I hope not for long - her poor little head will be cold without any hair on it this winter!


Wednesday, October 31, 2007

She arrived!

Only 4 days after the last post our pride and joy, Little Miss V, finally arrived!

After 3 days of contractions and one false start (a nice way of saying we were sent home from the hospital on our first attempt - Saturday), we made our way back down to hospital on Monday afternoon (Thanksgiving Monday). When we got there, we were admitted right away - I guess the silver lining in having contractions for 3 days, is that your body gets used to the ever-increasing pain, which means what could have seemed really painful I was able to get through. I mean, it still hurt (obviously enough for me to get Seth to drive us down to the hospital again - and there was no way I was letting them send me home again!) ... but I expect that it was probably an easier transition than if I got to that level of contraction in just a few hours vs. a few days.

All that being said, I totally took the epidural that they offered up right away - at first I thought maybe I'd see how far I could get, then Seth provided some solid reasoning - I'd been dealing with the pain like a champ for 3 days - I'd earned that epi!

And after 14 hours of labour in the hospital, Madeleline Elizabeth Vallier was born (3:22 am on Tuesday, October 9th). Seth's parents and my mom had made the trip up to Toronto to be there for the birth and were the first to help welcome little Maddie into the world.

Her first few hours in this world were spent wide awake and curious about everything around her. She was incredibly aware and alert and bright-eyed, looking at everything and everyone around her. No major crying spells and she took to breastfeeding like a champ - she has an appetite like her mommy (especially in the morning!).

I ran a bit of a fever during labour, which meant we needed to both get a round of antibiotics (by IV - so sad to see that in her little hand - but she didn't seem to mind at all) and stay for an extra day in the hospital - but that was okay as all the nurses were amazing and extremely helpful.

So by Thursday afternoon we were finally home. That car-ride home was a little challenging - poor Maddie didn't care for it at all and my heart almost broke listening to her cry. Luckily it was short-lived as she seemed to tire herself out and was asleep by the time we hit the Don Valley.

Those first few days at home were incredible - tiring, amazing, scary, fun - everything rolled into one as we tried to navigate how to be parents and keep her as happy as possible. As soon as my milk came in (3rd day home) it got a lot easier - she started to feel satisfied after feeding and was generally a much happier camper. Here's a pic of daddy 'soothing' her with his pinkie - what worked before we broke down and started giving her a paci.

We were so lucky that Seth's work gives their employees a bonus week of holidays for 'parental leave' when your family has a baby - so that meant that Seth had a full 2 weeks off to spend at home with Maddie and I. Not sure how I would have coped on my own if he had to go back after only a week.

And to spoil me even more, my mom came up to spend the week on the Thursday of Seth's last week at home - so that gave me 3 solid weeks of having another set of hands around the house to help with, well, just about everything. So this week was our first week 'on our own' and I have to say, after a rough start, we're starting to get into a rhythm - but this weekend is our first official 'road trip' - to Kingston for the 'meet and greet' shower that Mom is hosting. I'm a little nervous about how Maddie will survive the 2 hour drive and sleeping in a strange house - especially as she seems to be doing so much better lately with sleeping at night and during the day - it's almost like tempting fate - but I'm also excited to go and introduce her to everyone - so off to Kingston we go!

I promise my posting will be a lot more regular now that we are into a better routine with our days - updates to follow shortly! Oh - to view more pics check out the Flickr link on the right - you can scroll through all the pics of Maddie so far there...

Thanks to everyone for all their best wishes to far and the visitors and generous gifts - they are all so appreciated and already being well-used!


Friday, October 5, 2007

Catch up (warning - looooooong post)

Wow - I realize how long overdue this post is - I will try my best to rehash the last month and a bit as efficiently as possible, but since we all know how long-winded I can be, this post will probably be a long one (maybe I'll time an intermission for you in the middle). So let's get started...

Week of August 20th
This was our 'moving' week! Seth took Friday off work and left (with our kitties) to Kingston on Thurs night in a cargo van to pick up all our stuff that had been sitting in various parentals' houses for a few years now (yikes)... that includes all our wedding gifts, some furniture and other odds and ends. So while I was at work on Friday, Seth spent the day loading and unloading the cargo van into our new house (with his parents' help of course!). That night had dinner at the Firkin (how we will miss you faithful pub!) and made an early night of it....because the next day was moving day!

The movers showed up right on time (1pm) and had managed to finish the job by 5pm - 4 hours including the travel time - not a bad experience for our first time using movers. Joe the Mover - highly recommended by friends of ours, now highly recommended by us - they were fabulous to work with. So there we were, surrounded by random piles of furniture and boxes, with absolutely no motivation to begin unpacking whatsoever - I mean, we still weren't going to be living here for another week, why start now, right?

Instead, we hitched it on over to our new neighbours - Greg & Liz - where they were just wrapping up a painting party (that's what you officially call it when you rope 6 of your closest friends into helping you paint almost every room in your house - in ONE day!) ... the BBQ was set up and we all enjoyed a few frosty beverages outside that evening. We spent that night in our new house - bunking down on a mattress on the ground - and headed back to the city on Sunday.

Week of August 27th
My last official week at work - and our week of 'camping out' in the apartment. It was an extremely hectic week at work - ridiculously hectic for me, but worth it in the end. Coming home to the apartment night after night - sleeping on an air mattress when 8-odd months pregnant wasn't the wisest decision in the world. It made for a bit of a challenge in the sleep department - and definitely made the anticipation of moving to our new house sweet indeed.

That Friday, after everything was wrapped up at work, we had a few hours to pack up the rest of our belongings and vacate the apartment. I thought we had left ourselves only a few key essentials, but when it came to packing up, we realized that we had kept A LOT of unnecessary items behind, that now had to be stuffed into a mini-van and moved to Brooklin. Good thing our dear dear friends Greg & Liz had agreed to stop by and help us with the move - we wouldn't have been able to do it without them.

Saturday saw poor Seth heading to work, while I started the process of unpacking and trying to sort through the absolute piles of boxes we had stacked in every room. I kind of wish I had taken some before pictures, because you really would believe that a couple that lived in a small 1 bedroom apartment for 5 years could accumulate so much junk - well, let me tell you, it is somehow possible.

Anyway - lucky for us, my mom was coming to visit for the week and lend a helping hand to the unpacking process. She showed up early Saturday afternoon and we started tackling the kitchen right away. That night we popped over to Greg & Liz's - they were already completely unpacked after only a few days (yes, how impossibly unfair is that?), and we enjoyed some BBQ dinner while Seth headed into the T-dot to visit with a friend that was in town from out west.

Sunday was a 'chore' day - Seth got to clean all the carpets while Mom and I continued working on unpacking the kitchen. Sounds like it shouldn't take as long as it did - but there were a lot of things to unpack, re-pack (old appliances that we were boxing up for a garage sale), sort through and/or throw away. The mountain of boxes in the middle of the kitchen floor was slowly but surely dwindling away.

Week of September 3rd
Not really much to say about this week - Seth had to work (obviously) and I spent the week with my Mom unpacking and shopping for odds and ends for the new house (why do you always realize that you need so much stuff when you move?). Luckily (for mom and I) we didn't kill each other - heck, we didn't even argue all that much! And on Thursday of that week she got to join me at the doctor's office while I got my last ultrasound - that was cool for her to get to see - and lil miss V was doing just fine according to the ultrasound tech.

On Friday, Debbie & Shorty arrived for the weekend - our first week there and already hosting a full house of guests! Saturday was spent with everyone chipping in and helping us get even more unpacked - finally our main floor looked relatively organized - still work to do, but the mountains of boxes were gone (or hidden!) - which was great. Saturday night we found a nearby butcher and got some shish-ka-bobs to grill up - made for a tasty dinner, but also an early night with such a heavy meal on our stomachs (and the manual labour everyone did all day long).

Sunday was the day of the baby shower - being hosted for me by my good friend Liz - it was a blast. She had 2 hilarious games - one dirty diaper/guess the melted chocolate bar game that you have to see to believe, and one that managed to start lil miss V's shoe closet off to a great (cute) start - really well thought out and I think I can say that everyone had an amazing time. Of course the gifts were outrageously adorable and generous - really a big shout out to Liz for organizing that whole thing - it was great.

Week of September 10th
Not much to say about this week - Tuesday I went into work for a day to help with training of the new person taking over some of my duties while I'm off - she's settling in nicely and I think will be a great addition to the team. It was weird going into work for the day though - I still miss it, but after only a week already felt so strange - weird.

Seth left on Tuesday to head to Niagara Falls for the week for work - and that weekend was his 'Fins, Skins + All Ins' weekend that is hosted at Greg's cottage annually - so don't ask me too much about what he was up to that weekend - but I can guess there was some drinking and 'male bonding' involved - haha.

I spent the weekend painting the nursery - which was nice to finally get done - and when Seth got home on Sunday we finally put the crib together. I've posted some pics so you can see the end result (still need to hang some pictures for some frames I bought on the walls - but you get the picture)...

Week of September 17th
Not much to say about this week - it was our last prenatal class - and 2 of our classmates had already had their babies! Made me think that it must be coming soon for us, clearly I was wrong!

We had planned on having a BBQ on the Saturday night to have a few friends over to see the house set up and done - it was good motivation to get everything done and organized (to an extent - there's still patch work that needs to be done on the walls of each room etc, but at least things are put away or hidden in the basement by this point!).

It was great to finally get a chance to host a BBQ of our own after way too many years of not being able to do so - and everyone had lovely things to say about our house, which was nice - it was great to see everyone.

Week of September 24th
If you had asked me, I thought this was definitely the week that the baby would be arriving - clearly I would have been wrong - but after rushing around getting everything organized the week before, there wasn't a tonne for me to do, except sit and wait for the labour pains to start.

I think I did start to 'nest' though, as on Saturday morning I made a chocolate cheesecake from scratch for a friend's birthday we were going to that night. Doesn't sound like much to some of you out there - but for me, this was a feat of domestication - and I was quite proud of the outcome! Saturday night we spent at Greg & Liz's house for a lovely birthday dinner and some gaming (Clue Master Detective - a retro game that has become a fan favourite).

Sunday was spent lounging on the couch watching football (Seth) and out to lunch with a girlfriend and some final shopping (Sara).

Wow - that finally brings us to this week - which has been spent cooking on my part (freezing meals in prep of a time when we'll have none - time, that is) and doing some light cleaning, trying to get things going. I can't believe that Thanksgiving may come and go and I haven't popped yet. I honestly thought I would be early, although as my mother would say, "Sara, you haven't been early for anything in your life, why would you think you would start now" - wishful thinking I guess.

I can tell you that I've been having cramps for the past couple of days - but nothing that would qualify as 'labour'. But it's funny - women talk about the last couple of days being very 'uncomfortable' - I always thought they just meant because they were a huge lumbering elephant by that point. Apparently 'uncomfortable' is just polite-women-speak for 'constant pain' - yep, that's right - I'm laying down the truth - it's crampy and tiring and gross feeling. I take the 'uncomfortable' and raise you a 'miserable as hell'... kidding - well, not really. I think it's also the anticipation - like you know it's going to be hard and hurt and etc., and you just want to get it over with.

Oh yeah, and of course we're looking forward to finally meeting her - and I know you all are too - thanks for all the calls and 'check-ins' - you'll be first to know when she finally decides to make her way into the world... Leaving you all with a pic of my belly as it looked just a couple of weeks ago - I don't think I've gotten any bigger since then, so this is the best reference of my elephantism that you're going to get...

Will try to get back to a more regular routine of updates as of next week - love to you all...


Monday, August 20, 2007

Too fast

Not much to say about this weekend for us - but as I promised to be better at posting on a regular (weekly) basis, I'll give you a mini-update...

This Wed we picked up our keys for the house - so we are 'officially' homeowners! We also started our prenatal classes on Wed. They are....well, exactly what you expect. I'm sure we'll learn a few things though and hey, if anything makes us feel more prepared - well, all the better!

Friday night we grabbed some dinner and headed up to our new house to take a closer look around and just spend some time up there. Fun, but a long drive to and from for just a couple of hours.

Saturday Seth had to work in the morning and then headed to Greg's for his annual football draft get together with the boys. I stayed close to home, packing and actually chilling out on the couch for most of the day as I wasn't really feeling all that hot.

Sunday I finished our packing (literally everything we could possibly not use in the next 2 weeks is now packed away in a box). Seth got home by noon-ish, helped with a bit of packing and took a nap for most of the afternoon (get togethers with the boys are always so tiring...).

After he got up, we walked up Yonge St in search of dinner - stopped at a Mexican restaurant and ate on their back patio - it was a nice anniversary dinner (yup - 2 years as of Sunday - where have they gone?).

That's it really - low key weekend not quite as productive as I had hoped (as I brought some work home from the office that I didn't even open) ... next weekend is moving day - so it will be busy - and then a week later we 'officially' leave our apt forever... exciting stuff.

Hope you all had a lovely weekend - we'll post another update soon!


Sunday, August 12, 2007

Pack it up!

After that novel of a post to catch everyone up to the last month, there's not much more to say ... but in the effort of staying on top of my posts and not having to sit down for another hour to recap the past month + a half, I will try...

On Thursday afternoon this week, we met with the lawyer to sign our lives away. Seriously - no one tells you how many bloody papers you sign when you buy a house - it had to be over 20 signatures. Of interest - apparently the property we just bought comes with some by-laws to 'keep the integrity of the neighbourhood' ... including not being allowed to cut down any trees that are growing on our lot (not that we would - but makes me wonder about whether you're allowed to plant more trees?), and very specific requirements re: the type of fence we're allowed to have - in essence, they state no 'chain-link' fences allowed. Not that this really affects us either - we have a fence and it's to the specified height etc., but interesting to know regardless - apparently everyone in Brooklin needs a bit more privacy than a chain link fence would provide.

So now we've signed all the papers, given them our cheque (that was for more money than I've ever put on a cheque before) - we get our keys on Wednesday of this week! This Wed is also the first day of our prenatal classes - so yeah, we couldn't be busier that day if we tried. It will be tiring and I kind of wish that we could put off the picking up of the keys until Thursday - but I guess we have to go do an inspection of the house to make sure that everything is as it should be - and that needs to happen on the day of change in ownership.

This weekend was pretty quiet for us - Friday saw Seth hitting the Slayer / Marilyn Manson concert (yes, he's a rocker), while I went for a girls night out with some colleagues. Needless to say, I beat Seth home, and then he had to get up and go to work in the morning - although he didn't appear to be suffering from too bad of a hangover.

While Seth was toiling away at work, I was packing up the last of our boxes here - I keep feeling like I'm 'almost' done packing, and then I fill another 2 or 3 boxes - it's really shocking just how much stuff we have. I'm really not looking forward to the unpacking process now.

Seth got home early afternoon and went straight to bed for a nap, while I took myself out to Mt Pleasant for a well-deserved pedicure - it was nice! I got home, Seth got up and we walked up to the Rogers store to rent a couple of DVDs and then hit a patio for some dinner before heading home to watch the Number 23 (not great - but not as bad as I heard it was).

Today we got up relatively early and packed some more (yes, I actually got Seth involved - shocker!) - and now he's ensconced on the couch to watch some pre-season football games he PVRd while I write this post. The rest of the day is going to involve a bit more packing (I'm determined to get everything that can possibly be packed done today, so next weekend is less stressful than I expect it will be) - and for Seth - watching lots of football.

So that's it - the only other update I have for you all is that the sprog is continuing to be active and wiggle and kick her way up into my ribcage. Makes for some uncomfortable moments while I sit at my desk - really looking forward to being done with work now, not sure how some people work right up until the end - I'd love to be done now, but know these next 3 weeks will fly by.

Oh and I almost forgot - on Wednesday night I was surprised by some girlfriends with a tiny baby shower - it was adorable. Two of my good girlfriends weren't able to make the shower that's happening in September, so they (along with Liz) decided to get together and throw me a surprise shower. There was munchies, we ordered pizza and there was cake! It was absolutely perfect and adorable - I am a lucky girl that's for sure!

So that's all for now - love to you all - S&S.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Where to start?

I guess tardy is an understatement when it comes to explaining the lateness of this post. I will try my best to recap the past month for you all ... including pics as I can along the way...

June 30 - July 2 weekend
So the weekend after this last post was the Canada Day long weekend and we were fortunate enough to be invited up to our friend Greg's family cottage. We arrived late on Friday night and everyone was already seated around the kitchen table playing poker (shocking!). So we sat down, and I (not Seth - haha) actually got down to final 3 - of course I had no business being final 3, not even sure how it happened myself, and I was quickly outed at that point. That's okay - it was bedtime anyways.

The boys got up ridiculously early that morning to go fishing - I mean BEFORE the birds early - not sure how they did it. Liz and I were up around 8-ish and because the sun wasn't really shining, we decided to head into Trenton to hit up Old Navy for a bathing suit (for me) and some breakfast. Both objectives were met - I finally had a preggo bathing suit and our bellies were full by the time we made it back to Brighton. We stopped and picked up some sunscreen and groceries - all in prep for a lovely, sunny long weekend!

Unfortunately the weather didn't cooperate with our plans - and it remained pretty overcast and chilly for the rest of the weekend. I didn't get to try out my bathing suit or my chair floaty (boo!). And the word "tan" was stricken from our vocabulary. As was "fish" for the boys - they didn't do so well out there. On the upside of the weekend though - lots of yummy food, always fun Sequence competition, and rediscovering the board game "Clue" (although this version was Master Detective - impossible to find in a toy store now, as it was a limited edition, but the best version of Clue you have ever played). Good times had by all - with the exception of the drive back on Monday - that was a nightmare, took over 3 hours when should take only half that - oh well, that's the price you pay for getting out of the city for the long weekend.

July 6-8 weekend
The following weekend saw us travelling again. This time to Kingston on Friday night for a quick stopover, before continuing on to Carp (Ottawa-area) for a wedding on Saturday.

We got into Kingston quite late on Friday night and went straight to bed (staying at Sara's mom's house) - up early on Saturday morning we spent it sitting outside enjoying the sunshine on the back deck. After a yummy lunch of perch fillets, we were on our way to Carp.

The drive took us through more small towns than I could count - and it was so winding that it constantly felt like we were backtracking, but after a lovely 2-1/2 hours we finally made it! Just in time for a quick visit with Seth's parents + Nana, time for Seth to jump in the shower and for us to don our dress-up clothes. I got so lucky that friends have had to attend weddings pg before me, that I had a lovely black dress that I borrowed. The v-neck was a little more scandalous than what I'm used to showing off, but the accordion pleated skirt was adorable (and also succeeded in making me look like a bit of a house)!

The wedding was for Seth's Uncle Kenny + his (now) wife, Yvonne. It was a lovely ceremony and great reception - lots of family, everyone having a great time, hilarious speeches and shenanigans by Kenny's son, Jessie, and delicious munchies (yes, it's the food that keeps me going people). By about midnight though, I really felt like I was turning into a pumpkin, so dragged everyone home with me.

The next morning we were up early again and not feeling so great - hit the road before noon and decided to take the 'scenic' route home - Hwy 7 all the way to Peterborough. A few quick stops for fresh blueberries and a chip wagon, and we were home in a mere 5 hours - ha! That's okay - it was nicer than taking the 401 all the way and we got to stop in at Grandma Cronk's farm in Mountain Grove so I could show Seth around a bit.

The next morning I woke up with a terrible stomach flu (I know it was some kind of bug, but I still blame the wild blueberries) - I was sick for 2 days, with only ice-chips to ease my stomach issues - wasn't fun and I wouldn't wish it on anyone.

July 13-15 weekend
Luckily for us, while the weddings continued, our weekend traveling didn't have to. This weekend we were attending the wedding for one of Seth's cousins - but because it was in Oshawa, we didn't have very far to drive!

Saturday morning poor Seth had to work - but I was up early too - heading up to Brooklin as our current house owners were having a big garage sale and I wanted to check it out (and drop off the cheque for the leather couch we were buying from them). I picked up Greg & Liz on the way and we were there by 10-ish, but unfortunately the suburbanites get up super early, so practically everything had already been sold. Oh well - we got the leather couch and that was clearly the best item up for grabs! Although would've been nice to snag the chiminea (sp? little outdoor fireplace thing) for $10 before one of the neighbours did - oh well.

Then Saturday afternoon it was off to Oshawa for the wedding - another beautiful ceremony and we got to see a few friends from high school that we hadn't seen in a very long time. The reception was a few hours later at a nearby hall - delicious food (and LOTS of it!) and open bar (how unfair that I had to be pg through that!) ... all in all a great night and looks like they will be a very happy couple.

The Sunday after the wedding, we headed back into Oshawa to have breakfast with Seth's parents, took them on a tour of Brooklin (since we were so close by) and then ended up doing a bunch of furniture shopping in Whitby. Seth had his heart set on a king size bed, but I've brought him back down to the reality of budgets and basic room size.

July 20-22 weekend
This next weekend we had kept open as we knew after 3 weeks of planned weekend, we needed one just to recuperate. Seth had a baseball tournament, but also had to work the Sat morning, so he wasn't able to attend all of the games. Instead we headed out furniture shopping (again!) - trying to see if we could find any better deals at the outlets. Not sure if you've shopped for bedroom furniture lately, but unless you're willing to drop a bucketload of cash, you cannot find very many bedroom sets that are even reasonable in the price/quality continuum.

After getting no where pretty quickly, we headed home for the night - renting a couple of movies and getting some munchies to have a quiet night in. Seth decided to take a 'nap' when we got home (5pm) and ended up sleeping until 11pm - I actually woke him up by getting into bed to go to sleep for the night. Needless to say, he was up super early Sunday morning, but that was okay as we had to get up early for his 9am baseball game (last game of the tournament) - grabbed some breakfast and headed down to the field. The rest of the day is a bit of a blur - I don't think we did much of anything (I may have packed a bit).

July 27-29 weekend
Our last (planned) travel of the summer - we were heading out on Saturday morning to my Dad's cottage (just north of Kingston).

We did have plans to go out on Friday night with Ryan, who was in from Ottawa for the weekend, but unfortunately I got the call that evening the my Grandma Cronk had passed away - it was a bit of a surprise, even though she was 90, so wasn't really in the socializing mood that night.

Saturday morning we headed out and hit some crazy traffic and it ended up taking us over 3 hours to get there - not fun. It was great when we finally got there though - there was all sorts of family that I hadn't seen in a long time, we got to go out on the boat for a tour around the lake and again, there was all sorts of yummy food! And they all decided to surprise us with a mountain of presents for little baby V - a TONNE of newborn outfits, some blankets (one homemade quilt that is so sweet), a baby bath and some other diapers + wipes and goodies. Really, we got spoiled - it was so nice, but I almost started blubbering like an idiot (pg hormones strike again!) ... managed not to embarrass myself too much I think.

Sunday morning we were all up pretty early and had a light breakfast before heading out in the boat for some light fishing - Seth finally broke his unlucky streak and caught two small-mouth bass - although sadly one of the fish swallowed his lure and ended up dead - poor guy. We were back on the road by 1pm as Seth had two baseball games back-to-back starting at 5 - we didn't have time to go home, so I had the chance to sit and watch some baseball, relaxing in the shade.

Aug 3-5 weekend
For what is normally the long weekend for most folks, is just a regular weekend for me, as I don't get Monday off (Civic holiday isn't a stat holiday) ... yes that makes me a little bitter, but also means that we don't have to fight traffic on the Monday back from whatever cottage we would have been at.

Instead we had a quiet night on Friday, and headed out on Saturday morning to do some more furniture shopping (have we finally made a decision yet, you ask? Well, yes we have - and proud to say that we are going to get close to 40% off the total price - that's what shopping around, and connections, gets you!). We also hit Costco to get our membership cards activated (we're now officially suburbanites, before we move even!) + then we headed over to a friend's new house on the east side of the city. They've downgraded in mortgage value, but upgraded from a house perspective - it's crazy what a few kilometres outside of the city will get you in added value - just nutz.

After the grand house tour (including raiding their backyard blackberry bush for some treats - yes, they have a blackberry bush in their backyard - so jealous), we headed around the corner to another friend's house for a Sat night bbq. It was nice just sitting around, shooting the shit for several hours, and the food - well, let's just say, I've been spoiled for food this summer. Banana & cherry chocolate burritos were served for desert if that gives you any idea.

Sunday was spent cleaning (for Seth) and packing (for me). I would say we now have about 80% of our non-essential items packed - just a bit more to go, and we're ready for the movers in a few weeks.

This week we meet with the lawyer to sign all the paperwork (and hand over the certified cheques), and in a week and a half the house is ours! I can't believe we're finally getting to this point. House poor, but happy - feels like we've been waiting for this forever.

Well, that was a short novel - I promise I won't leave it so long again in the future. Have a good week everyone - I'll leave you with a pic of my belly (a few week's ago, when I was 28 wks - I'm even bigger now I think) ... love to you all.


Sunday, June 24, 2007

3D ultrasound weekend!

Well, we finally got to do the 3D ultrasound that we tried to do several weeks ago - it was pretty amazing. I'm not sure how to really describe it - the time flew and Seth and I were enthralled the entire time. They give you a DVD of the entire 30 minutes you're in the office, as well as a CD of a tonne of still shots - which is a great keepsake.

And we finally found out - it's a GIRL! We're both super excited - I thought Seth was holding out for a boy, but turns out I'm wrong - and he's already talking about how much he's going to spoil his little girl.

Not much else to say - it was a fab summer weekend - Seth was in a baseball tournament all weekend, went to a friend's bbq on Sat night - all in all, spent most of the weekend outside, which is always nice.

I'll leave you with a few shots of out little princess... :)

A little fist and partial view of her face

And a better view of her face + chubby cheeks (that black thing in front is the umbilical cord)

Have a great week everyone - next weekend is a long weekend - enjoy as much as we will!


Monday, June 11, 2007

A very cool feeling

This week was a bit of a milestone for us as Seth got to finally feel the baby kick from the outside! It was last night (Sunday), and I'd been feeling the kicks growing stronger, so I put my hand on my stomach and you could definitely feel it and see the stomach move! So I called Seth over and told him to poke right in that spot - and the response he got was a solid kick - pretty cool really.

Overall, we had a great weekend. Friday night was spent cleaning, which doesn't really sound like fun, but it's because we were planning on leaving Saturday morning to hit the cottage with our friends, Greg & Liz. We got out to the cottage by noon-ish and sat around chit-chatting and eating (well, and drinking for them) ... we played some bocce ball, we played some euchre and enjoyed the sunshine. A tonne more people arrived around 7pm and it turned into quite the rowdy party (I snuck off to bed by midnight - too tired!).

Sunday morning came early, and it was even warmer out. We had a lazy morning cleaning up and eating a yummy breakfast, and by 1pm we were heading back into the city. If I wasn't feeling so crappy, we would have stayed and enjoyed the full afternoon there, but I think I caught a cold or something the night before - today I'm really congested and crappy feeling - oh well, it was worth it!

By the time we got back to the city it was mid-afternoon and we just conked out on the couch. It was a pretty lazy evening, with the highlight being the baby kicks. And now it's Monday, sigh, oh well, only 5 more days until the weekend!

Love to all!


Sunday, June 3, 2007

Another belly pic

This week went by incredibly fast for both of us - work has been busy and with Seth playing on two baseball teams, just seems like there's fewer and fewer weeknights in the mix. Oh well - I for one could just wish this summer away - as much as I love the warmer weather, I'm so looking forward to August 31st and can't wait for it to finally get here.

Friday night was spent at the Firkin around the corner from us - I met my girlfriend for dinner and Seth joined us when he finally got home from work. Wasn't a late night though - yes, we're thoroughly boring now.

Saturday Seth had to work, and then attend a work-related baseball event - which meant I had the apt to myself all day. I spent the better part of the morning trolling the nearby 'hoods for garage sales, but I found that really, garage-saling isn't all that fun on your own. I came home empty-handed, took a much needed nap (ha!), and then did my cleaning 'chores'. Seth got home at 6-ish and we headed out to see a movie and grab a bite to eat (saw Pirates of the Caribbean 3 - good flick, but looooooong).

Sunday we had big plans to hit the Toys R Us that's out on the QEW and finally pick out some furniture for the impending nursery, only to find out that the Don Valley + Gardiner were closed - and no way in hell were we trying to get there on Lakeshore alone. So instead we hit the one at Vic Park + Lawrence (actually not as bad as we expected, thought it was smaller than what it was). Managed to find furniture that we both agreed on - which is always a bonus. After that, we did some grocery shopping and Seth is back out playing baseball w/ his men's league team. Yes, we are an exciting couple. I've just finished packing a few more boxes and am going to sit down and watch Pan's Labyrinth - will let you know how it goes...


PS - I know I promised another pic - here's my gigantic buddha belly as of today. I included both side + front views, so you can see that my waist has fully disappeared, along w/ my self esteem ;) ... kidding, but seriously, I can't believe that I'm only 22 weeks - I know I'm going to get a lot bigger, but honestly I can't imagine the skin stretching much more - it's weird, and I think unless you've felt it, it's hard to explain. Anyhoo - have a wonderful 1st week of June!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

We'll take the hint

This weekend was the culmination of a bit of a roller coaster week. On Wednesday we had our 20-wk ultrasound and had hoped that we would be able to find out the sex of the baby at the same time. Well, little Val-Jr decided to play shy with the technician on Wednesday and we couldn't get a clear reading. Otherwise though, everything was healthy and progressing along fine - which is great news, and what (in hindsight) we should just be focusing on.

After going through the disappointment of looking forward to finding out and not getting our answer, we decided to take matters into our own hands and pay for a 3D u/s at one of the private clinics for gender determination. There was actually an appointment available for this Sunday, and we snapped it up.

The rest of the week flew by (as short weeks after long weekends usually do), and Friday was here before we knew it. We spent the evening on the couch watching the movie 300 (great but gory), and hitting the sack early. Saturday, we spent the morning cleaning and by 12:30 were off to our 1pm registry appointment at the Bay.

Registering for a baby when you've never had one, or really been around babies before is a bit of a meandering experience. Luckily I had researched online (nerd) and found a pretty comprehensive checklist of items that we would need, but actually picking which one we wanted to register for (i.e. figuring out what the hell the difference is between this stroller and that stroller, aside from one being uglier than the other) was a little difficult.

We ended up putting a number of items on the list (with the lovely saleslady's help) and I think we have a good start at least. But it took the better part of the afternoon, so by the time we got home at 4:30, we were ready for a bit of a nap.

Sat night we had a bbq to attend - a few boys' b-days were celebrated and some cake was scarfed down. Funnily enough, after chatting with some of the moms in the group, I found out that the Bay actually sucks for it's baby department - so perhaps it wasn't just our ineptness that kept us from finding everything we were looking for. After looking online at, I've decided a quick trip to Buffalo may solve some of our problems. Why, oh why, can't Cdn department stores just get it right though? It's sad really.

Then Sunday morning was the well-anticipated 3D u/s appointment - we got down there in plenty of time, only to find out that there was an issue with the appointment booking, and they had us down for 10am, although our confirmed appointment time was actually 11:30am (which we had arrived early for). Because the u/s tech had left for the day, it left us up shit-creek, with the only option to rebook for another time.

Since this clinic couldn't do a simple thing like book an appointment accurately, I was a little less than thrilled to rebook for a later date for them to then give me a gender determination (I mean really, if they can't book an appointment, why would I trust them to look at my baby and tell me important things?) - so we declined and told them exactly what we thought of their 'service' and legged it out of there.

We've decided that we should just be happy that we know all is healthy and good with the bean, and let the 3D u/s thing go for now. We might get one later - at 30 weeks, when we can see some more detail and stuff, but for now, we're happy to think in greens + yellows, instead of pinks or blues. Sorry folks - I know there were some of you looking forward to buying little girl or boy things, but it's just not meant to be I guess.

So that leaves us at early afternoon on a Sunday - I'm going out for a bite to eat w/ a girlfriend I haven't seen in a while, Seth's playing some video games, and nothing else on the agenda for today. Whew...


Monday, May 21, 2007

Wow, I can't believe that May is almost over - first long weekend of the summer and it was an enjoyable one.

Last weekend saw Seth and I heading to Kingston on Saturday for my Grandma's 90th birthday - there was a tonne of family there for the party - almost like a reunion for me, as I hadn't seen a tonne of them in many, many years. Saturday night we spent with Seth's parents, watching a movie and some hockey, along with pizza from Capri (of course!). Sunday we spent taking the Moms out for a Mother's Day brunch - an all you can eat place that this preggers woman enjoyed!

This past week seemed to drag by - I think for some reason the nicer weather is making it seem longer and longer to wait for the weekend to get here. And since it was a long weekend, the anticipation was even higher I guess!

Saturday I spent downtown shopping along Queen Street with my friend Liz, while Seth went golfing right after work. Because we were meeting up at Liz & Greg's house in Markham for dinner, the ladies picked up dinner on the way home. St Lawrence market was just about shutting down for the day by the time we got there, but managed to get some filet mignons, some huge sea scallops and fresh tiger shrimp - dinner was looking to be quite promising!

The boys finally got home around 8pm, and we cooked all the goodies up - eating dinner outside, such a nice luxury that I don't think I'll ever get tired of! After dinner, we decided to play some games - they had just gotten a Wii gaming system, so we had to try that out - a lot of fun, and great exercise! After that, some board games and lots of wine for everyone (me, I was on the non-alcoholic Becks - the only way I think I'll make it through the summer) - it ended up being 3am before we got to bed - late night for this recent early bird.

Sunday we got a fancy breakfast made for us, and we played some more Wii before we left. We then spent the rest of the afternoon running some errands before settling in for the night. Today was a pretty lazy day - although I did have brunch with a friend, and Seth did a bit of cleaning around the house, but mainly we just lazed around.

All in all, a pretty perfect long weekend had by all! Hope your weekend was just as restful!


Monday, May 7, 2007

Fast weekend

Why do the weekends fly by so quickly when the week feels like years? Blech. Anyways - it was a great weekend for Seth and I - not for any major reason, just a nice weekend overall.

Friday saw Seth getting off work early to meet his friend Greg for some afternoon golfing - which of course started his weekend off nicely. My Friday night was a bit more lame, as I just came home from work and rented a movie (Notes on a Scandal - brilliant movie, seriously rent it!). Since Seth did the requisite beer + wings after his golf, I was actually asleep by the time he came home - exciting life I lead!

Saturday Seth had to work until 1pm, and I ended up cleaning + doing laundry in the morning. I had plans to go shopping in the afternoon and so I thought it would be good to get some of the household chores out of the way that morning. It's funny though, I know I'm not that far along yet, but I already feel like I'm moving at the pace of a tortoise. By the time Seth got home, I had the laundry done, but was only about halfway through the rest of the cleaning. And I mean literally, halfway - half the dishes were done, half the bathroom was clean, half the coffee table was clean - so strange! I think it's pg-related attention deficit disorder or something. But how perfect is my hubby, he actually came home thinking that I would already have gone out shopping, and was planning on surprising me by cleaning the house while I was out. So he finished my halfway jobs and I hopped in the shower and met Liz for some much-needed shopping!

That night, Seth and I had a 'date night' planned - we went to the movies to see Disturbia - good, but not great. Really more of a teen flick (sadly enough, it wasn't 'gory' enough for us). But whatever, it was entertaining, and really, isn't that worth the $40 you spend to go to the movies nowadays? ;)

Sunday saw Seth going to baseball practice in the morning and then lazing away his afternoon on the couch, while I met another girlfriend for lunch and hitting the Eaton Centre for some more shopping. I've been on the search for reasonably priced maternity clothes and it's been a struggle, let me tell you - and I just can't bring myself to pay $70-$100 for a pair of black pants that I can only wear for a few months - so I'm going to look a bit more 'casual' at work than I had originally planned. Oh well, I guess all you moms out there went through this, right?

After some grocery shopping later on Sunday night, we came home, made a pizza and watched the finale of the Amazing Race. Oh - and Seth PVR'd a Saturday Night Live special that was all about the cast from the 90's - it was actually hilarious - if you missed it, you missed out!

So that's all for now - it's Monday morning and I'm procrastinating getting in the shower to get my ass to work... have a great week everyone!


Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Belly pics

Two posts in one day - what are the chances? But I had promised to post some belly pics, so here they are...

7 wks

10 wks
14 wks

And POP goes the whale - 18 wks.

Another catch up post

Wow, it seems I just cannot keep on top of these weekly updates lately - okay - here goes...

So the weekend of the 20th, I can't even remember what we did on Friday night it was that uneventful (either that or pregnancy-brain is kicking in) - Saturday Seth had to work (story of our life), and I did a couple of friends a favour by babysitting their daughter for the afternoon. It was pretty cool - she actually fell asleep shortly after they left and slept for 2 full hours - by the time she got up I gave her a snack and we went out to play. Just about when she was getting tired and cranky, her mom and dad were home, so I was like, hand off!

That night we were back at the same place (Rob & Vone's) to take advantage of the warm weather and bbq the night away - it was lovely sitting outside for our first meal of summer (?spring?). High points of the night? A new hot-sauce shrimp recipe, yummy filet mignons from the market and me finding my non-alcoholic Beck's at the grocery store. All in all, a pretty enjoyable night.

That Sunday, Seth had baseball practice and I had brunch with the ladiezz at Cora's downtown - yummy happy brunch place for pregnant women as they garnish your plate with a rainforest of fruit. After that, shopping with the girls to find some spring garments (that will fit!) - which was only successful thanks to the ingenious designers at H&M - thank you for making maternity clothes that don't make me look 16 or 60 - thank you ever so much.

So blah blah blah working the next week - although I had another Dr. appt on the Wednesday - all is good in the hood (or womb, I should say). Next appt is May 23 when (knock on wood) we find out the sex of the little bean. Woo hoo.

Last weekend Seth was in Orlando (since Thurs actually), and I had a bday party to attend for my nieces in Harrowsmith. It was good to hang out with the family and do some shopping. AND I got to meet a new member of this earth - Quinn Sammon - my girlfriend, Stefanie's new little one - he's adorable (of course) and super tiny (but I held him and he didn't break, so that's a good thing).

That's it - this weekend is going to be quiet. I have another brunch with a girlfriend and Seth has to work (is there a pattern here?) ... hoping to get some more packing done around the house, feeling urgent about everything lately. Might as well do it while I'm not a clumsy oaf of a whale, right?

Love to all ... S&S