Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy holidays

Looking at my last post, I realized I didn't want to leave you all without a Merry Christmas wish...

Hope you all have a wonderful holiday. That Santa is very good to you and yours. That you eat well, you drink (very!) well, and you have lots and lots of merry moments.

The Valliers

Sleep much?

Our little non-sleeping-loveable-little-miss (oh-god-why-can't-you-just-figure-out-how-to-sleep-thru??!?!?) has taken to waking up at 6am these days.


Luckily she wakes up in a good mood and is happy enough to play with her stuffies and music box in her crib for a bit (read: 30 minutes), while I continue to doze.

But I'm not "sleeping". I'm dozing. Big difference. Especially in energy levels as the day (week) goes on.

I'm thinking she's getting older, maybe we need to move her bedtime a bit later? Instead of the 7-7:30-ish time that she is currently going to bed, maybe we need to move it to 8pm?

I don't know. I'm sure I could research the "appropriate time for a 14 month old to go to bed" - but I thought I'd just ask the experienced moms out there. What do you think? Is this an anomoly because she's a) teething, b) soaking thru her dipe, or c) an non-sleeping demon that has been put on this earth to slowly torture me through sleep-deprivation techniques?

And really - should I just move her bedtime and hope for the best?


Saturday, December 20, 2008

Her first "official" haircut

This morning, after doing some Christmas errands, we took Maddie to get her first haircut. I say first, because while I have trimmed her bangs a few times, there was no way I was going to attempt cutting the back of her hair.

An adorable children's haircutting place opened up near us - Melonhead - and after sticking my head in the other day to check it out, I couldn't resist booking an appointment for Miss Maddie.

It is honestly the coolest hair salon ever! Instead of barber chairs, they have little planes, trains and cars for the little ones to sit in. They bring a bunch of toys for your child to play with while they're doing their thing, and there are a bunch of tv's tuned to Treehouse throughout the shop.

We were greeted by name, Maddie got to pick her "chair" and after being given some My Little Ponies to play with, the shawl was whisked on and the hairstylist started cutting. And she was fast! I'm guessing it's a trick of the trade, try to get it over as quickly as possible before the kid starts squirming.

After shopping for the past hour and a half, and because it was 11:30 (so just before lunchtime), I expected Maddie to give a bit of a hard time. Nope - of course she didn't. She was totally awesome, to the point that a few of the other stylists came over to comment on just how amazing she was acting.

And because it was her first haircut, she got a certificate, a picture and they collected some hair for us. And of course our little "ham" smiled very nicely for the picture! (Who's the rockstar in the glasses? heh.)


Friday, December 19, 2008

Personal Santa Message!

I know Maddie won't "get" it this year - but how cute is this??? Check out Maddie's personalized message straight from the big man himself, courtesy of our friends at Sympatico MSN...

How cool is that!?


Thursday, December 18, 2008

A day in the life (Or: eating from the floor like a dog…)

I wake up hearing Maddie sing-song-ing to herself in her crib. It’s not even 7am yet. I need a shower, I need to brush my teeth, I need to get dressed. All before she decides she’s not happy in her crib anymore and wants out NOWNOWNOWNOW.

I do all these things in under 10 mins, while Daddy helps keep Maddie happy and gets her dressed (and yes, she looks like her Daddy got her dressed – whatever, it’s just daycare, its not a fashion show).

He does the hand-off, while I’m putting on makeup and trying to make my hair not look like it hasn’t just been wet down in the shower and left to die.

Maddie plays in the bathroom cupboards, obsessed with my pick, hairbands, and lipgloss.

I grab extra diapers, my fancy work boots and a sweater for her. We head downstairs for breakfast.

I start to get some breakfast together, while she gets milk in a sippy cup that she proceeds to throw a) at the tv, b) over the baby gate into the dining room, and c) into the green bin under the sink (she’s OBSESSED with the green bin!!!).

I wrestle her into her highchair. I give her the cut up banana and her milk while I get the toast ready. As I’m buttering the toast, with my back to her, I hear a) the sippy cup get tossed to the ground, and b) slap, slap, slap as a bunch of banana falls to the ground.

I give her some toast, and try to swallow some down myself while I make her lunch. I’m mashing avocado, scooping cottage cheese and cutting up pear while she yells screams yells at me.

She’s now eaten maybe 2 pieces of banana, and 1/8 of a piece of toast. I try some yogurt. She grabs at the container, jamming her fist into the yogurt and spreads it across her face. I force feed the rest into her while she screams at me. Then I wipe her face, her hands, her forehead, part of her hair and the tray down.

I let her down from the chair, she immediately picks up a piece of toast and throws it at me. Then mashes a fallen banana piece into the floor with her foot.

I gather up the banana pieces and throw them into the green bin. I pick up the toast and (without realizing what I’m doing), eat it.

Yes. I eat toast that has been thrown on the floor. Twice.

And not only that – even as I realize I’ve just eaten off my floor like a dog, I pick up another (non-mashed piece of banana) from the seat of her chair and eat that too.

She plays with the phone, calling god-knows-where, while I finish packing her lunch. I run this, my computer bag, her diaper bag and my purse out to the car. I get my jacket and boots on. I chase her around the living room, trying to get her jacket on.

I manage to wrestle her jacket on, find a spare binkie and get her into the car seat. I return to the house to find my keys and blackberry. And we’re off. I drop her at daycare and head to work.

I realize I left my tea and my lunch on the counter in the kitchen.

Oh well – at least I ate half a slice of floor-toast.



PS - don't feel too badly for me. There were fancy croissants in the kitchen at work when I got into the office. So I'm good...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Maddie bits

We've taken to asking Maddie "are you a crazy girl?" ... because she indeed acts a little crazy every day. Here's a selection of her most recent adventures...
  • She's obsessed with clementines (we call them Christmas oranges), we peel each section for her and she eats an entire orange with breakfast, after lunch, and after dinner. And if she happens to find one she can reach, she just starts eating it... PEEL AND ALL. Eww - gross.
  • She knows her diaper genie stinks ... so when she's in her room she often goes over to it and waves her hand in front of her face (like we do, when we're telling her she's "stinky". I've caught her doing it a few times while playing too - and then I smell her bum - and yup, it's stinky. Does this mean she knows she's pooping? And if so, can we potty train her? ;)
  • She knows the sign for drink, and knows how to say juice. But instead of using either of those, she just points and SCREAMS at the fridge until we give her a cup of juice as a snack.
  • Because we have an evergreen tree in the front yard that she was obsessed with in the fall, and often wanted to "touch" (and I would tell her not to, as it was "ouch"), she now touches the fake Christmas tree we have, and says "ouch". Even though the needles are fabric (or plastic), and nothing in any kind of way is prickly about our tree, it's still "ouch".
  • Also on the "ouch" bandwagon? The stove (well, this doesn't bother me, as it could be), her head when banging it on her crib bars, her fingers when she slams them in a cupboard door, and (for some reason) - snow!
  • She likes tea. I know that's not crazy - but she's very very obsessed with my tea mug every chance she sees it.
  • My purse is a new obsession. As is my new blackberry bold. Like seriously kid? Do you not have enough stuff? Can't I have a few things that aren't your playthings?
  • Paper. Magazines. Letters. Christmas cards. Flyers. Newspapers. Random envelopes or old bills. They. All. Get. Torn. Up. She loves to tear paper. Thinking of returning all her presents and saving the money and just giving her a skid of photocopy paper (and boxes - yay!) to play with. She'd be just as happy I bet...
So that's it. Our house is in constant disarray. I don't know how anyone keeps their house tidy with a crazy toddler toddling about and wreaking havoc everywhere they turn...

Hope that gave you a giggle or two (at our expense) ... and if not - I'm sure THIS will...


Tuesday, December 9, 2008


We've entered a stage that I'm really not enjoying so far.  The "cling".  When we go to new places, when I drop her off at daycare, even certain times of the day when I just want to get stuff done around the house.  

She clings.  And whines.  And is generally miserable unless she sitting in my lap, or being held on my hip.  And if she gets to do that, well then she's just as happy as a clam.

Anyone else go through this?  I spent the first 2 months of daycare drop offs with a kid that barely looked back to say bye to me, and now I leave feeling guilty and horrible.  


The cheesiest

That would be me, apparently.  

I've realized in the past couple of years that I'm one of maybe, a dozen people, that actually really enjoys Christmas music.  I love listening to it from about November 15th onward.  It makes me feel all warm and gushy inside.  I like listening to it when I'm wrapping presents.  I like listening to it when I'm baking cookies.  I like listening to it in a boat, on a moat, with a goat.

I used to apologize and roll my eyes in chagrin at myself, yes, I'm cheesy.  Yes, I know it's too early to be listening to the Love Actually soundtrack.  Yes, the Beach Boys are terrible...

Not anymore!  I stand by my stance that it's a lovely holiday, with lovely music of from all sorts of genres, and I like all (most) of it!



Monday, December 8, 2008

Weekend update

It felt like the weekend was never going to get here last week.  Both Seth and I kept thinking we were a day ahead (i.e. Wed felt like Thurs - you get the picture) - maybe had to do w/ the crazy weekend prior, or the Monday/Tuesday sick baby.

Anyways - we relaxed with a movie on Friday night (Wanted - not bad, def better than I thought it would be).  Saturday we cleaned the house, I bake cookies and Seth fixed the roof (well, assisted on fixing the roof - thanks again Dave!!!).  G&L came over to visit, and we all ate dinner before the "boys" headed back to Greg's to play some rockband.  Liz and I watched a terrible movie and random tv.

Wow - just rereading the above - my life is not that noteworthy anymore.  Unless I become a movie reviewer...

Anyways, Sunday was spent doing some more Christmas baking, and taking Maddie to get her pic with Santa.  Yeah, it didn't go well.  So now we have 8 wallet sized photos of my little girl SCREAMING her head off on Santa's lap.  Money well spent, I say.  I will scan one and post for you all to chuckle at.

That's all I've got folks.  Heading to bed now - up late these past two nights working, and then Maddie decides she wants to wake up several times throughout the night ... I am a walking zombie and it's only Monday?!?  

Yikes.  This working stuff is hard...


Friday, December 5, 2008


Remember when I used to complain about getting no sleep? Oh wait - I've never stopped complaining about that.

Well last night really put its money where its mouth was ... she did her regular 11:30 wake up (or as we call it around here - the-within-15-mins-of-mommy-hitting-rem-stage-wakeup), and then the regular 3am wakeup.  Then I'm usually good to sleep until 7am.  Except not last night.  Looked like she was going back to sleep, but then a half hour later, she's crying again.  And rinse and repeat.  And rinse and repeat.  And...well, you get the picture.  

Fast-forward to 6am and it's quite obvious that she's not going to sleep.  So up we get.  And I feed her breakfast.  And I shuffle around like a zombie.  Until 8:30 when she starts throwing random toys and magnets (why magnets?  who knows) at me, at her stuffed animal friends, over the baby gate.  Just throwing.  Aggressive little beast.

So I'm like, hey - wanna go for a nap dude?  She's like, duh. 

I throw on some Bob, she goes down like a dream.  And it's what?  Noon?  Still sleeping.

Me?  Oh, I've done a bunch of work, a bunch of housework and am fighting sleep.  Because I know the minute I close my eyes and blissfully drift off?  That's when she'll wake up.  And that my friends, is just not worth it.

Or is it that I just don't want to give her the satisfaction?


PS - happy Friday!  Hope you all have a good weekend - we're getting our roof fixed, having friends over for dinner, getting Maddie's pic w/ Santa, putting up the xmas lights and grocery shopping - but probably not all in that order...

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Usually, during the daycare drop off dance, Maddie gives me a cursory glance as she scrambles out of her carseat (yes, we're still using the bucket - she's tiny!), and then runs off to the playroom to hang out with the other kids.

Grumpy, tired, happy, energized.  It's never really mattered.  She's never been that clingy.

Until today.

Don't get me wrong.  She didn't cling and cry and make me feel like a bad mom.  She just hovered. Hovered around my legs while I stood chatting with Alexise. Rebuffed the advances of the friendly 3 year old that is usually the one leading Maddie away from me, by the hand.

I didn't give in to the urge to make a big deal about it.  I just did what I always do, gave her a big hug and kiss, and told her to be a good girl and have a good day.  

Then I opened the door to leave.  As I'm shutting it, Maddie comes barreling towards the door. There's a long vertical window beside the door, which is what she pressed her face up to as she slowly (sadly?) clenched and unclenched her fist "bye bye". 

And that wasn't even what got me!  It was her big, brown, soulful eyes staring at me.  Not crying.  Not making a fuss.  Just looking at me like, "I'd rather be with you today Mommy."

Me too, bubs.  Me too...


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Oh Roseola!

It's been a whirlwind week and a bit.  I started the new gig officially last Monday and when you're working from home, it's a bit strange to start a new job, as you kind of live in la-la land for the first few days.  Add to the confusion a daycare provider unavailable for periods of a few days due to appointments and a teething baby, it's lots of fun.

Grandma Vallier came up as of Wed afternoon to help watch Maddie through the crazy week - while I had meetings and work schedules that I was trying to figure out.  Grandpa and Grandma Burke showed up for a visit on Thursday afternoon, dropping off Christmas presents and taking us all out to dinner.

That night (Thurs) Maddie didn't sleep well and felt warm to me.  The next day I headed into work for the full day and she hung out with Grandma Vallier.  She apparently seemed fine all day, but felt warm at one point again.  Figuring it was just teething, I didn't worry too much about it.  That night, at Maddie's bedtime we headed down to Kingston as we had the Xmas dinner with Seth's extended family on Saturday afternoon.  

Saturday morning saw Maddie definitely not feeling well, very tired, cranky, not hungry and still running a bit of a fever.  We kept up our hectic pace though, as I still just thought it was teething... 

After a crazy Saturday night where she wouldn't sleep at all unless tucked up beside me, and running a fever of 39.2, we headed down to the hospital to get her checked out.  They did the regular checks, and also did a catheter (DON'T recommend this on a 13 month old, at least I don't recommend having to be in the room while it happens) to check whether it was a UTI.  They didn't find anything, so we were told to monitor her fever and take her to the doctor at home if it didn't drop in the next day or so.

So we headed back home, on a long long drive where we had to stop a few times to change a diarrhea diaper, try to feed a cranky baby and bathroom breaks for the adults.  4 (!!!) hours later we were home.  The rest of the day was a nightmare as we dealt with a cranky-ass toddler and two sleep-deprived, cranky-ass parents.

Monday we kept Maddie out of daycare and took shifts on watching her - me in the morning, Seth coming home early from work to watch her in the afternoon.  The fever had broken and she was doing a little better.  Still very sucky.  Still not eating/drinking much.  Still very weak and wobbly on her legs.  But better than the past few days.

So we sent her to daycare today (Tuesday).  I knew she wasn't 100% but we both had work commitments we had to keep.  And then I get the call.  From daycare.  Around noon.  I looked at the phone, say the daycare provider's number and thought, shiiiiiiiiiiit, what's happened?

Apparently Maddie had developed a rash all over her belly, back, face and neck.  Weird right?  I couldn't think of any allergic reaction she could be having, so I googled "baby fever rash".  And low and behold, a million pages come up about "Roseola".  Apparently very common, it's a viral thing that babies under the age of 3 can get - sudden high fever, accompanied by low appetite, lethargy and irritability (check, check, and double check!).  Then once the fever breaks, a rash shows up for a few hours to a few days.

So there we have it.  A reason for the fever.   A reason for the cranky, non-eating baby.  Where she got it?  Have no idea.  How long she'll have it for?  No clue - the rash is still there.  Will she be back to her old self soon?  God, I hope so...