Thursday, November 20, 2014

My sweet baby

AAt 4 months old I can say now, by looking back on this blog, Baby Macaroni is my sweet baby. She is my cuddly, smiley, attached baby and I love it.

I also adore the 4 months stage. It is my favorite baby stage by far. Not so fragile anymore, but still not yet rolling and scooting and trying out independence. Others may argue other milestones, that's fine. I relish each morning when I hear her familiar coos coming from the bassinet and when I look over she gives me the biggest smile. My reluctance to move her into the nursery is growing but it needs to happen soon. She is almost too tall for the bassinet and our evening chats are beginning to wake her up. Sigh. This chapter is coming to a close and I am simply not ready.

The upside is so far Baby Macaroni is putting her big sister to shame when it comes to sleeping habits (knock on wood!). We will be having some pack and play sleeps over the holidays which will hopefully serve as the transition into the nursery. But unlike The Babe, who we couldn't wait to move into her own space, this move will be bittersweet for me.

On The Babe horizon I am attempting to change my language use around her and about her. Reading (another) article I learned by describing her as a "wild child" and "a handful" I may be reinforcing the negative instead of turning it into a positive. So I will now be using the words "passionate" and "energetic" to describe her whenever possible. Perhaps it will change my reactions to her, maybe not. It's worth a shot. It feels as though I am always talking about our struggles, of which yes we have many,  but we also have a lot of successes I don't talk about as much. Why is it so much easier to talk about the challenges and not the accomplishments? Is it our desire not to appear to be bragging? Is it a fear of making another mother feel less than? What is it? Do you feel as though you are frequently talking about the negative and not the positive? Is it just me?

~ H

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Why I want to be my toddler

I am watching my toddler lay on the floor, grunting at me with her shirt off and her hair askew and I'm thinking, "wouldn't that be nice?" while I furiously clean the kitchen. When I start to think about it, there are a bunch of reasons I would to trade places with my (almost) 3-year-old. Here's are some:

  • Macaroni and cheese - she gets to eat this a lot. Probably more than is recommended. Sometimes I put peas or mixed vegetables in it, but sometimes I don't. Her macaroni and cheese looks pretty good when I'm choking down kale.
  • Pants off dance off - the majority of afternoons The Babe is without pants at our house. She wakes up from her nap without pants and they rarely make it back on before bed. I cannot walk around the house with my pants off. The neighbours would think I am weird. Or a nudist. Which is also kind of weird.
  • Taking what you want, by force - socially unacceptable for adults, but tolerated in toddlers. Though we encourage her to share, take turns or find another toy, I think sometimes we all just want to rip something out of someone hands and then run away. Admit it, you're smiling at the thought of this right now.
  • Laughing at things which are not funny - if I laugh at something which is not funny, I either missed something or I am depraved. But The Babe laughs at the strangest things, including inflicting violence on her dad and I, and often I wish I could find the humour in singing a song incorrectly.
  • Laying down anywhere she damned wants - The Babe lays down at the park, in the kitchen and even at Superstore. She gets comfortable and hangs out on her stomach no matter where we are or who is around. Sometime, especially at work, I just want to lay down on stomach to get stuff done. I think my productivity would go up, even if people couldn't see me at my desk.
  • Stickers - enough said.
  • Playdoh creativity - when we bust out the Playdoh The Babe is coming up with numerous ideas and scenes, whereas I am like, "here's another bowl..."
Finally I think I would like to be my toddler sometimes because of her ability to shift from sad to happy in a split second and completely forget whatever wrongdoing just occurred. It takes me a solid 3 days to let it go when my husband forgets to bring me home chicken wings if he's gone out the pub after hockey ;)

~ H

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Birthday wars

As in The Mommy Wars, but with birthdays. I got into them, big time, and before I knew it, The Babe's last birthday parties became a little over the top. Here's a photo of my Pinterest-inspired Sock Monkey themed set up for The Babe's 1st birthday:

Yes, the brown cupcakes do look like poo. I realized that after a number of snickers from our male guests. Now here are two more photos of my Pinterest-inspired Sesame Street themed set up for The Babe's 2nd birthday: 

You don't even want to know how long it took me to glue together the cupcake toppers.

So you know what I'm thinking for The Babe's 3rd birthday? Screw Pinterest. That's right. I said it. You know what I did for her upcoming birthday party? I went to the party supply shop 10 minutes away. I bought some plates, balloons and some cute dinosaur noses. I will not be making decorations. GASP!!! The horror! I will be ordering one sandwich platter from Costco and they will not be themed sandwiches. ANOTHER GASP!!! How dare I! I don't even really want to serve cake, so there! She doesn't like cake much, she likes cheese more, as most of you know by now.

There will probably be cake, let's not get to crazy in my rebellion.

I refuse to take part in birthday shenanigans this year. I will not be cutting things with cookie cutters, I will not be labeling my snacks with dinosaur-themed names. I will be opening my doors to our family members, offering them some drinks and store-bought Chicago Style popcorn and sitting back to enjoy the fact that we have survived another year in tact and managed to teach The Babe a thing or two, go on a few outings and even a vacation!

The Pinterest-inspired birthday party was mostly a pat on the back for me. "Look how creative I can be! Even though I'm working full-time, raising a toddler, and keeping the house clean(ish), I can still find time to make paper handicrafts and artful veggie platters!" I don't regret it; it was time-consuming but fun and I did like the way everything came together. I just don't want to do it anymore. I have realized I don't need to prove anything to anyone, because the only person who puts a value on matching snacks is me. The Babe just wants to play with her cousins and hug her grandparents. My husband only wants The Babe to have a good time and for me to have less stress (read: opposite of elaborate party). Our families just want to celebrate. So I'm going to chill out, use the same Happy Birthday banner I made two years ago, and let The Babe wear whatever she wants to wear that day.

I did splurge and get one outrageous thing for this year - a pinata. But I didn't make it ;)

~ H