Friday, July 30, 2010

Katie's Announcement

Don't you just love the birth announcement we just finalized courtesy of Momento Design? These will double as our thank you cards to all our thoughtful family and friends, but just had to share here first. A good friend suggested Daniela when I was looking for announcement options - she was fantastic to work with, she incorporated all my ideas and suggestions fluidly into a wonderful, one-of-a-kind design - and I love, love, love the result.

Stay tuned for actual pics of the finished nursery once I finally get this last bit of artwork on the walls!


Why I'm a bit crusty today...

  • She cut my lawn again. Yesterday. For the record? This time our lawn was actually shorter than hers - as we had recently cut it... so no, this is not a "they are sad pathetic lawn-keeper-uppers" and more "I'm a crazy neighbour that needs this particular patch of grass to match my lawn perfectly". And while I've spent the past 2 times turning the other cheek as so many of my good and wise fb friends suggested, this time? It will be discussed. The very next time I stalk see her.
  • Maddie has taken to waking up and PLAYING in the very wee hours of the night. Why? I have no 'effing idea. And while Hubs is officially in charge of the monitor for Maddie's room, he has this one small fault: he could sleep through a tornado funnel being balanced on his nose. So the wee-hour parenting seems to fall to me a bit more.
  • Last night was the 2nd night I spent (attempting to) get back to sleeping in my own bed. For the past five weeks I've either shared my bed with Katie while Hubs sleeps on the couch, or I've bunked out on the daybed in her room. Guess what I forgot? How incredibly much (and loudly) the Hubs snores. It's like sleeping next to a clunky 1930's freight train. Front, back, side -- he's perfected the art of snoring in any position. Suggestions as to actual tried-and-true remedies would be MOST appreciated!
Reason why I'm not taking today's crustiness out on my 5 week old?
  • She's only a baby and of course doesn't deserve it.
  • She's cute and adorable and even her poop smells sweet.
  • She's started to smile at me more and more and more these days, and fuck me, those gummy smiles melt my heart.
  • She slept like an 'EFFING CHAMPION all on her own, in her own crib, last night: 9-1am, then 1:15am-4:30am. Note this is particularly during the periods that I was mostly awake due to the 2 other ingrates I live with...
  • When I gave up and decided to bunk in with her during the 4:30am feeding, she snuggled into me, belly to belly, and gave the happiest, most adorable, little snuffle-sigh as she latched on. And that? THAT is why I enjoy co-sleeping. That, and she doesn't snore.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Weekend wisdom

I think I can honestly say, this is the first weekend of "two" where I didn't feel stressed out the entire time. Clearly the key to toddlers is to get them the 'eff out of the house. So that's what we did - both mornings.

Saturday was a standard random Ikea visit. You see - I'm not sure if you've noticed or not - but I'm a touch crazy. Which sometimes manifests itself in random proclamations of things THAT WE MUST BUY. BECAUSE WE NEED THEM. DESPERATELY!!! OH HOW HAVE WE LIVED LIFE THIS FAR WITHOUT THIS MUCH NEEDED ITEM??!?!?!

Enter: my insistence that we visit Ikea. On a Saturday morning. To buy a step stool. A small, two-tiered step-stool that was ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY for Maddie to be able to wash her hands (because she's a shorty and all kids stools are about 1 inch too low for her to really get in there at the sink. You know what I mean?). Clearly this was a necessity.

I'm still not entirely certain how or why the Hubs agreed to this (looking back now) ridonkulous request. Saturday morning? Ikea? Yes, I'm an idiot.

But off we went - battling crowds. Looking through the children's section, then through the kitchen section, then through the dining section (every Ikea personnel we asked about said stool seemed to think it was in a different area of the store). Turns out there were NONE on display, but according to their handy-dandy inventory count - there were 2 in the warehouse. So down to self-serve we went. And looked. And yes - just as you may have suspected, 2 in inventory at Ikea means ZERO on the shelf. So two hours later, stomachs full of nasty Ikea food (seriously - my first time eating there - it's bad. Like, REALLY. BAD.), we left the store empty handed...

Hubs told me he was certain he had earned a lot of "points" that morning...

However - that managed to kill a full weekend morning. And guess who thinks Ikea rocks the large one? Because she can run around like a deranged monkey, play on random couches and underneath random tables and essentially be the bane of every other shoppers existence? Miss Madds of course. Ikea is like a playground to her - and she was d.o.w.n.

Since our Saturday road trip went so swimmingly, I made the suggestion that we try to do something Sunday morning as well. So to the Zoo we went. Getting there just past 9am we beat the crowds, beat the heat and managed to do all the "interesting" animals before lunch time. We hightailed it out of there just as the crowds closed in, threatening to send Hubs into ultra-moody-mode, and even managed to grab lunch at home instead of succumbing to a $12 hotdog.

I'd love to share pictures of our first full-family-attended trip to the zoo, but someone forgot the camera in the car and we didn't realize it until we were about a mile away from the entrance. That someone may have forfeited some of his "points" from Saturday on that move.

So that's that - we kept our sanity this weekend by simply not being at home. Doing stuff entertains your cranky toddler. Imagine that...


Friday, July 23, 2010

One Month

Dear Katie,

I write this as you slumber on the nursing pillow on my lap. Fitting really, as this has been our position for the past month. You like to be snuggled, you like to be held, and you'll sleep all day long if someone will just do nothing but cuddle you.

One month old - and it has (of course) flown by. You are not so tiny and fragile and breakable looking. Weighing in at 9lbs 1oz, you're turning into quite the chunky monkey. And you love to eat - usually every 2 hours, except when you change it up and decide to sleep for almost 4 hours straight (I love those nights).

Oh, the sleep. We thought we had it rough with your sister. If it's possible -- you fight sleep even more. You won't sleep in the crib, the bassinet, the swing, the bouncy chair or the stroller. You want to be held. You want to feel the warmth of another person.

And once again, we find ourselves giving into the demands of a newborn. And so you sleep on me, or with me, or in my arms, for the better part of the day. We're trying to change this - but it's all just so hard. And I know just how short this time is -- when you are wee, when you are small enough to fit into the crook of my arm, when you will be 100% content to just lay on or near me -- I know how fleeting this time is and to be honest, I'm enjoying, relishing, savouring every minute of it.

Happy one month my little grumpy troll. I love your squeaks and your grunts and all your little frowns just as much as I love all the cuddles.


PS - your eyes are still blue. Let's keep them that way. I've got a bet going with Daddy...

Thursday, July 22, 2010

There's another 950 feet in our future...

We had rain this past weekend. The kind of hard torrential rain that transforms the streets into rivers and creates massive puddles on your lawn. The kind that homeowners with leaky basements dread...

So after the massive rain, I wander down to our basement to grab something from the pantry, and I step in a puddle. Uh oh. The leak. The elusive, can't-figure-out-the-cause-of-it, leak - is back. I call the Hubs and give him the good news, and restate my campaign for calling in an expert. Let's stop trying to fix this ourselves. Let's get someone in that actually knows something...

And for once? The Hubs agreed. He'd reached his breaking point. He was willing to call Uncle. Whatever it was - I was happy. So the specialists were called in. They were explained the issues that had been haunting us for 3 years. They had a few diagnoses from just that phone conversation, but insisted they must come and do a site visit to give a proper estimate. That site visit would cost $250, but if we had them do the work, it was all credited to the invoice.

Fair enough, right? So we did it. The specialist came. He looked. He examined. Inside and out. He sprayed a massive amount of water at the "spot" we thought was causing the leak. He looked again. He examined. He ripped down insulation and really looked.

And..... nothing. There's no crack. There's no hole. There's no leak.

It's all condensation.

Yes, seriously.

So turn up (down?) your humidifiers (40 is optimal apparently). Open your basement vents (for both air-con and heating). Turn the humidifier on your furnace off (even in the winter). And get that air flowing. Because apparently condensation can actually accumulate to the point of puddles.

Yes, seriously.

Good news? This only cost us $250 to learn. And $0 to pass on this lovely wisdom...

Finished basement... here we come.


Monday, July 19, 2010

Who needs a son...

The Hubs and Maddie hit a milestone this past weekend - on Sunday morning he took her up to the lake for their first Maddie/Daddy shore-fishing experience.

He gave her his ice fishing rod - because (to quote): "Well, it's kind of the right size, and she doesn't have her own Princess rod just yet."

Clearly, I see a shopping trip for a fishing rod in our near future. Bass Pro, here we come...

Oh - and what fishing trip is complete without a quick sidetrack to the nearby park?

All told - they had a great time. Maddie loves fishing and the Hubs thinks she's "a natural". I see a few more trips up to the lake this summer.

And no, they didn't catch anything. But I don't think that dampened any of the fun.


Friday, July 16, 2010

American Idol she ain't

Maddie has added a new skill set to our everyday routine. Singing along with everything.

That includes Dora (but only the mermaid rescue episode thankyouverymuch).

That includes various singing toys/dolls/etc.

And that includes just random songs SHOUTED into the microphone that accompanies her little Sir Mix-a-Lot keyboard toy she loves to play with.

It wasn't until just this week that I noticed just how much I sing to her. Silly made up songs. Normal songs but with words replaced so as to make them all about whatever it is we're doing. Or just actual songs - nursery rhymes, lullabies, the McDonald's theme song.... clearly I have no standards.

And so I take full blame - I've created a singing demon. (And sidebar? It's freaking adorable to watch a toddler try to sing along with a show/doll/radio - she gets about every 5th word right but manages to mumble along with the rest - and really? It's probably not much worse than what I'm still doing in my mid-thirties.)

And while imitation is flattery incarnate, the unfortunate side-effect is (as Hubs loves to point out) she's also imitating my ability to carry a tune. Which is, to say mildly, no ability at all. Result being, he's got two tone-deaf women in house, singing along to anything that moves.

Before you feel sorry for him though...
At least she knows how to dress the part... even if she doesn't have the vocals to back it up...


Thursday, July 15, 2010

If it works, use it...

Scene: the Hubs is clearing up the dishes from dinner. I'm sitting on the couch, burping Katie. Maddie is running around creating chaos, like only a toddler can.

Maddie: Oh! Gotta go potty Mommy!

Me: Oh good! Mommy's feeding Katie, but Daddy will come with you - run and go like a big girl and Daddy will come help.

[Maddie from the bathroom - "I did a poop Daddy! I did a BIG one!"]

Hubs (after returning from potty duty): That's the 3rd night in a row. Is it just me or does she go every night when you're busy feeding Katie?

Me (shoving Katie's sleeping face closer to my boob so it totally looks like she's nursing): Yep - I agree. The timing is uncanny...


Cheer up

I realize yesterday's post was a bit of a downer... and poor Katie - that's no way to be remembered at just 3 weeks old... so here's a few Katie-isms that I want to make sure we don't forget:

  • You sneeze in fours. Four times in a row. Every.single.time. It's adorable and perplexing. What the hell are you sneezing about?
  • I've started calling you the Grumpy Old Troll - partly because of the crazy frowny faces you give us constantly. And partly because of your groaning, grunting, grrrrrrrrowling that you do regularily (particularly while nursing). Must get this on video. Oh - and don't feel bad, we called your sister The Piglet for the first few months of her life because she snorted so much while nursing.
  • You also have the most adorable cry - since the day you were born - when you want to eat you cry "La! La! Laaaaaaa!" It's like a little lamb cry (yes, I know lambs go "baa" - but really, same thing but with an "L" - even the warbly little lamb voice. Again, must get this one video..
  • You will.not.sleep in a horizontal position. I've tried. Numerous times. So for now, it will be bouncy chair, swing etc. (Oh, I should clarify - you'll sleep totally happily on your back, as long as you're laying next to someone. Namely - me. So it's either swing, or we get used to snuggling in the daybed.)
  • Oh and you love our new sling. You'll sleep like a drunken sailor there. I don't even have to be moving - you sat in the sling while I ate my dinner last night. A hot dinner! Can you even imagine the luxury?
  • No official smiles as of yet - I'm sure you're saving those up for a Grandma or random stranger instead of bestowing unto me - but you smile like crazy in your sleep. 
  • The blue eyes are currently winning the fight over eye colour. Your sister may have gotten her Daddy''s big brown eyes, but I'm cheering you on for (potentially) inheriting the blue from me instead! Goooo blue!
So - to summarize. Grumpy Old Troll when awake. Deliriously happy baby when asleep. As long as that asleep position is in very close (touching) proximity to me.

Yep - that's 3 weeks.


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Three weeks

Well, I knew it would happen. But perhaps I didn't think it would happen as quickly as IMMEDIATELY after I wrote the braggarty "sleep-sleep-sleep-all-the-time, don't stop sleepin', lovin' the sleep" post. Yes, sleep is for the weak.

I am weak.

I now live in the haze of that sleep-deprivation - lose your temper at the most minor of things, forget to do things like brush your teeth that day, or where you just want to break down and cry (or yell) because someone (you) forgot to buy more milk.

It's a low point. It's lonely. It's bleak and dark and (sometimes) scary because 2am-5am is a time in the day where the minutes feel like hours and the horizon of change seems very, very far away.

And unlike Maddie, you don't have any interest in pacifiers. Or swaddling. Or "shushing". You want to be held, and then you don't want to be held. You hate the Ovol drops that are supposed to help with those pull-up-the-legs-gas-cramps - so you spit out half the dropper back at me. You want to nurse so badly sometimes it's frantic, and then you pull and bite and clamp down and scream like it hurts. And then gobble-gobble you're back in there and fighting me when I try to de-latch for a burping-break.

Three weeks is hard, really hard, this time around. And you're not happy lately, and I haven't figured out the magic ingredient that will make things all better just yet. But I am trying, Katie. I promise I am trying...


Edited to add: I realize this post sounds a bit down. But I want this blog to be honest, not just a "look how wonderful you are week-after-week" recap of my girls' lives. I'm F.I.N.E. And I know things will change again - probably soon - maybe tomorrow. But in the meantime, this is our now. This is where I am. And hell - you're just lucky I didn't write the post at 4:30am this morning after being awake for 2+ hours of crying. Because this? Is effing Pollyanna-esque in comparison.

Monday, July 12, 2010


  • Remember the neighbour girl that I told you about? Maddie's new BFF? She came over for a playdate last weekend. It was adorable to watch Maddie's eager anticipation for it to begin - and even though the little girl didn't want to do much more than craft the whole time (she even brought her own supplies!), and Maddie's interest in crafting went to zero within about 10 minutes in, she still had a fabulous time. Isn't it amazing how the most influential voice to our kids is other kids? I sat and watched as Maddie mimicked and repeated almost everything this other girl said. Possibly the most agreeable I have ever seen her...
  • My magical sleeping baby has disappeared and been replaced with the magical gassy baby. I cannot pin down what the hell I am eating that is making her so gassy - but all sorts of memories of Maddie as a baby have come back and slapped me in the face. And how I had limited my diet down to essentially toast, crackers and a little bit of jam - and yeah. I'm not sure I can do that again. I wish there was a diet you could follow that would ensure your baby didn't have gas. But according to Google, that's impossible. Screw you Google...
  • I love the shorthand-speak that old, really old, friends have. This past Saturday I hosted some old highschool (and one uni) friends for lunch and I'm not sure any of us ever finished a sentence. We don't get to see each other very often (even less so, now that I moved out of the city), but when we do the lazy, easy, comfortable rhythm just picks up where we left off. I feel blessed to still have such old (and good) friends still in my life.
  • I'm finally doing something about trying to line up some longer-term daycare for Madds. We have daycare for August figured out (well, the last 2 weeks, and it`s only part-time - and yes, I could rant on and on about this) - and potentially something with the same provider for the fall. And yet, I still have a bit of a pit in my stomach about it. And so I'm (finally) getting off my ass and trying to actively line something else up for her. And have I mentioned how effing terrified I am to have her home with me and the bebe even just part-time? I love her to bits, but omg to the terrible twos and the toddler energy and the potty training and the demands for More!Dora!Mommy! and I just want to sleep so badly....z.z.z.z..z..zzz.....
  • Remember when I told you about planting my berry bushes (it was a berry exciting post, I'm surprised if you don't recall it)... well, we (the Hubs) ate our very first raspberry this weekend. And after having my head buried in life after newborn, I actually pulled it out from underneath the covers enough to check out the rest of the garden, and holy shit there's a zucchini out there the size of my inner thigh (meaty!)... I guess I have to start harvesting and making shit. Zucchini recipes anyone?
  • I'm so bored with TV already - I have no idea how I did this before. As much as I relish the freedom of having Maddie in full-time daycare right now, and am enjoying this newborn veg-out stage that I know needs to end very soon - the actual TV-watching-portion is effing boring. I know it's summer and all - but I've actually resorted to watching Jersey Shore on Rogers On Demand. I've sunk to a new low. Must get out and start renting some of those shows that I always wanted to get into but never did... Dexter and I definitely have a date before July is over.
Yeah, that's all I've got right now - taking the rest of my nap-fueled freedom to eat some more toast. And hopefully start painting shelves for Katie's room. (Because dammit, the child is going to have a finished room before she turns one month old). I love neverending projects...


Friday, July 9, 2010

Dramatic? Me?

Driving in the car on the weekend:

Maddie: My's tummy's hurts...

Me: From drinking too much juice probably, you juice-monster.

Maddie: My's tummy hurts from too much juice! Owwwwww. It hurtssssssssss.

Me: Rub it. That will make it feel better.

Maddie: I needs a band-aid for my tummy. Owwwwww. My's. Tummy's. Hurtsssssss!!!!

Me (to Hubs): Seriously? Have you ever heard someone be so dramatic?

Him: Yes. YOU.

Me: [Silence] Har har...well, now there's three of us. What are you going to do about it?

Him: Golf. A lot.


Thursday, July 8, 2010

Two weeks

Only two weeks, and yet it feels like forever (if I may be so prosaic). Our little family is complete and we're (slowly) falling into a rhythm of routine.

Oh Katie - you sleep. You sleep so much more than your sister ever did. Please don't stop sleeping. We love the sleep. You love the sleep. You're a happy, non-grumpy, content little baby. Please don't change that. Pleasepleaseplease don't change that.

For the record? I totally know you're going to. That the only constant with a kid IS change. But still - I wanted to mark it down for the record that you did, at one point, sleep pretty alright. Now feel free to 'eff with it...

And you're chunky. Already 8 lbs 3 oz at the last appointment with the midwife (just this Monday). Like, growing out of the newborn diapers chunky. How are you so big kid? Not that I don't love those rolls and dimples - because nomnomnom - I totally love them.

You love the swing. You love the bouncy chair. You're content to just lay on the floor and kick-kick-kickety-kick. That's not to say you don't love a good cuddle - who doesn't? But sometimes you just gotta be put down in your own space. I get it - and thank you for it. Because that's when I get to eat...

You (of course) love to be nekkid. I think you get this from your sister. And you LOVE the bath. What newborn loves the bath? Especially when water is poured on your head. We figure it's a whole "reminiscing your old home" thing, but still - you quiet right down as soon as we get your head wet. You little adorable weirdo.

Daddy is still sleeping on the couch downstairs - giving up the bed for you and me at night. But our big master plan is to "fix" this, this weekend. So that room that I worked so hard on these past few months may actually start to get used. We'll see how that goes...

All in all - so far so good. You're fitting in just fine I'd say. I guess you can stay...


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The only child transition

Remember how obsessed I was with how Maddie was going to take the upheaval of a new baby in the house? I think I obsessed over it a few (thousand) times.

Well, I'm not going to be one of those moms that says "Oh she was great, took to it like a champ, no real issues." Because really? That would be a lie...

In fairness, Maddie has been more than loving and accepting and mothering towards her new baby sister. To the point of coming over to her and petting her face whenever she cries, saying, "S'okay Katie, shh-shh-shh, s'okay."

How friggin' cute is that?

And towards Daddy there hasn't been a large change - in fact, I'd venture a "nothing has changed at all" in their relationship. She's still a Daddy's Girl, relishes his attention when he's home from work and wants to be near him most of the time.

But with me? Well, it varies. Luckily I'm not getting a tonne of aggression - in fact, she hasn't been nearly as pissed at me as I expected she would be. Instead there's a lot of, "Mama do it!" going on instead. "Mama read me another story." "Mama pick me up." "Mama take me to the potty." "Mama come outside to play with me."

Usually this only happens while I'm breastfeeding Katie or doing something equally as difficult to multi-task with.

Of course, right?

So there's been a few challenges behaviour-wise. Bedtime recently has been exceptionally difficult. But on the upside: there's been no major regressions in behaviour (unless you count the requests to be carried around and the one request for "boobie milk" she made one night - erm.... yeah, they might count, right?) and potty training has continued without a hitch. I don't want to jinx myself and say she's "trained" - but she does (often) go to the potty without being asked, hasn't had an accident in almost a week and can navigate the whole potty experience on her own (especially as she refuses to wear anything but dresses nowadays).

As long as the meltdowns go away (or at last subside slightly), I think I can handle this two-kid-gig. It`s a bit precarious at the moment, but at least leaning to the side of manageability...

And that's a good thing, since I'm pretty sure they didn't come with a "return policy".


Thursday, July 1, 2010

Happy Canada Day!

Maddie's all, "WTH do I do with this?"

It only took me until Katie was one week + a day old to dress them in coordinating outfits.

I think I showed restraint.


PS - for those of you all wtf'ing me on the timeliness of these posts? Well, I'm trying to keep it updated, except I'd write half a post and then not finish to publish, so yeah, I'm fudging the "post" dating on here right now. Whatevs... It's called "documenting our lives" people... not "be date-sensitively-accurate on your posts".