Saturday, August 28, 2010

Try, Try Again

What I’ve learned this week is not to give up on toys… or yourself.

We really haven’t used Evan’s swinging chair that much because he would just cry when we put him in it, but yesterday afternoon he was fussy for no explainable reason so John suggested we try the chair. I looked at him like it was a ridiculous idea because we both knew he would just cry more once we put him in it, but I humoured him. Lo and behold it worked, I mean it really worked! He sat in that thing as content as could be for half an hour. It allowed me to fold two loads of laundry and tidy the house while John prepared our dinner. So know that if your baby doesn’t like a toy one week he might like it the next and it could allow you some YOU time.

Speaking of YOU or in this case ME time, I went for a bike ride yesterday all by myself and it was awesome! It was tough, it definitely made me realize how out of shape I am, but I still really enjoyed it. I started biking again just two years ago. Before that I hadn’t really biked since I was a kid and it’s amazing, the feeling of cruising on two wheels with the wind in your face. It’s so fun! When I got home I went straight to the backyard and did a small ab workout and some yoga. Today I feel beat up! Ha! It’s a good feeling though, I know my body is repairing itself from the first real (challenging) physical activity I’ve done since Evan was born.

Every day is a new adventure when you become a parent. Your child learns new things and impresses you with how they’ve changed even from the day before, and you impress yourself because it ain’t easy to be a mom and to still make time for you, you have to try and try again.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Just Like That!

In the last three months many moms have told me that once I make it to the three month mark things will start to get better… easier and wouldn’t you know it, they were right!

On Monday I was chatting with my mom telling her all about our busy weekend (filled with visits, shopping, hosting) and she said to me, “Josie, you’re getting your life back.” It’s true, at three months I seem to have found my groove. Evan is more predictable so I’m less anxious about how each day is going to go and I feel so much better, almost like my old self. Take yesterday for example, I met up with a friend down by the canal and we did a strollercise class together which was too much fun. Then we went to Starbucks for a latte and a treat. When Evan and I got home John was on his lunch so we all hung out for a bit. Then Evan went off to bed and I baked a banana bunt cake with orange icing. Seriously! The last time I attempted baking I burnt myself and all I had to show for it were some rock hard cookies (that was over 7 years ago!!!). Thankfully I seem to be much more capable in the kitchen these days and my dessert turned out perfectly! Not only did it turn out, but I had fun making it! Let’s see, what did I do then, oh yes, I showered and got ready for my night out. My best girlfriends and I planned a picnic by the canal (hence the dessert), since it rained yesterday we all met at my girlfriends apartment downtown instead which was lovely. I was so happy to be with my girls. The last time we got together like that was before I was pregnant, so needless to say it was long overdue and it reminded me of how much I love my friendmily and how they can make me laugh like no one else! I felt like my old self yesterday and today too! It probably helps that Evan has been sleeping so well the last couple of nights… that always makes everything better. Here’s to the three month mark!

Play date with his buddy Preston...

The cake that cost me $70 to make! (I had to buy a bunt pan and a mixer... ha! It was well worth it.)

You can make it yourself, just follow these easy instructions (Thank you Trudy!):

Banana Bunt Cake with Orange Icing

1/4 cup soft marg or butter
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup mashed ripe bananas (3)
1 tsp grated orange rind
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup buttermilk or sour milk*

Orange Icing:
1 and 1/2 cups icing sugar
2 TBSP yogurt
1 tsp grated orange rind
1 tsp orange juice

Cake: In bowl cream butter add sugar and beat well. Add eggs and beat well. Beat in vanilla, bananas and orange rind. Mix together flour, baking powder and baking soda and beat into egg mixture and add buttermilk*. Spray Pam into a 9 inch springfoam or square pan and spoon in batter. Bake at 350 for 40 minutes. Let cool at least 10 minutes and remove from pan.

Icing: In bowl combine icing sugar, yogurt, orange rind and orange juice and mix until smooth. Spread over cake and enjoy!

*To make sour milk, add 2 tsp lemon juice or vinegar to 1/2 cup milk and let stand for 10 minutes.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Travelling With A Baby

Last weekend John and I went to visit his family in Toronto. We left on Thursday and didn’t return home until Monday. That’s one, two, three, FOUR sleeps away from home sweet home. It was hard for me. We had a lovely visit, don’t get me wrong, and John’s family was wonderful and so excited to have Evan there, but it was tough on me and tough on Evan too (I think). For example, he was in the car a lot, which he hates! On the way there he cried about every 45 minutes. Sometimes we would pull over, but we couldn’t do that every time, so we dealt with his purple faced bloody murder scream as best we could. Once we were in Toronto we were driving a lot also, we had a lot of visits to pack in so there wasn’t much choice. I tried to keep his naps as regular as possible, but it wasn’t easy and he was up three, sometimes four times through the night.

When I first had Evan people told me, “Oh you’re going to love having a newborn, they’re so easy to go places with”… ahhhhh, ya right! Sure you don’t need to worry about food (if your breastfeeding), but there’s the diaper bag plus back up diapers, there’s several outfits (because puking is now a guarantee), there’s the spit blankets, the stroller, the Bjorn, the crib, the monitor. Now true, our little bambinos don’t need all the mentioned bells and whistles, but… well I need them okay?! Now I’m asking myself, am I an uptight mother? Truthfully, I rather not go anywhere these days and when I do I need my… ehem, Evan’s stuff to make sure I’m prepared the same way I would be if we were home.

On Monday morning we left Toronto at 6am. That was the right thing to do because Evan slept for 2 hours, got up, ate, and then went back down for the last 2 hours of the drive. I wasn’t sure what it was going to be like when he got home, but he eased right back into our home life routine. On Monday night he slept for 5 hours, got up for an hour feed, then went back down for four! Same thing the next night! Oh and this kid is rocking his naps too! It’s so nice.

I want to be that mom that can travel with my baby like it’s no big deal, but I’m not. I’m sorry, I’m just not. I like the comforts of our home and our routine here. I never thought I’d be a homebody, but for now I am. For now…

Friday, August 6, 2010

He's a Big Boy!

On Monday evening I put Evan down in his own room is his big boy crib and walked down the hall to my room to sleep for the night. I sat on my bed, looked at his empty basinet and had a moment. Our little boy is growing up so fast. He’ll never sleep in his basinet again, I won’t go as far to say that he’ll never sleep in our room again because I know the boogie man will scare him in there more than a few times, but right now I’m a bit emotional over this latest milestone. What’s making it easier is that he seems to really like his crib; he’s had a great week! He’s been sleeping 5 to 6 hours, getting up for a big hour long feed, and then going back down for another 5 to 6 hours. This has been pure bliss for me! I feel wonderful! I know however that his schedule could change again at any time so I’m just doing my best to enjoy it while it lasts.

Having him sleep in his own room certainly has its perks. John and I don’t have to tip toe around anymore for fear of waking him and I think he’s getting more independent. For example, this morning he was talking to himself for a good 10 minutes before he actually started fussing for me to come and get him. Speaking of which, getting him from his crib has become one of my favourite parts of the day. Even if he is squealing, once I enter the room and unwrap him from his swaddle he’s all smiles and giggles. I let him stretch and kick around before I pick him up and he just loves it. He really is the joy in my day.

Yes, things are very good around here right now which is quite the contrast from last week when I had another mini meltdown. Let’s see, what was I freaking out about? I was stressed over my nipple issues, contemplating using formula to give my boobs a break once or twice a day, worried about him getting his 2 month vaccine shot, but most of all, stressing myself out over his “schedule”. Since then I have thrown all books aside and have taken to simply reading my baby as best I can. I’ve stopped waking him up from his day time naps after an hour and a half and in fact the day I stopped doing that he had one of his best night sleeps yet. I’ve decided at two and a half months I’m not going to lose (any more) hair over scheduling, there’s plenty of time for that in the coming months.

We all just do the best we can and sometimes books and advice can be overwhelming, at least that’s what I’ve found. So for now I’m just trying to relax and enjoy my baby while he is a baby because before I know it he’ll be out of his crib and into a real bed!

Evan with my brother and his girlfriend...

Evan loves his bath time!!!

More QT with uncle Jake...

Swimming in the ocean, chatting with the octopus...

Impressing us with his new trick... SITTING!