Thursday, December 31, 2009

Sum it up

2009.
You are almost over.
It really has flown by.
I remarked to my Dad today that when you're older, the years go by so much faster than when you're a child.
I asked him if his memories from when HE was a child are clearer than when WE were kids. He said definitely.
I pondered that perhaps when you're a kid time goes by SO much slower and so memories have more time to sink in. Your brain is still forming and maybe things impress themselves on your memory so much more stronger than they would otherwise.
I don't want for my child-raising days to be a blur. But I've already forgotten so much (thank goodness I blogged so diligently with Noah and am trying to continue for both boys).
Anyway, 2009 has been a hard year.
(Beth, how's the good but hard/challenging but rewarding word coming along?)
But good.
We moved when I was 7 & 8 months pregnant (one move OUT of our apartment and one move INTO our house).
We moved into a house!
We survived multiple flus and colds during May & June.
I had an amazing and relatively pain-free home birth and ended up with my sweet baby Jude.
We've entered the waters of toddlerhood and have tried to figure out how to parent a clingy two-year-old.
I've wrestled (and continue to wrestle) with who I am, how I be a Mom and a Wife as well as the many other "titles" I carry.
I've walked the paths of post partum depression and am walking more and more in the light (though often it feels like 2 steps forward, 1 step back. Moving forward, but often moving a little slower than I'd like to).
I've learned to ask for and accept help.
I've broken down and been built up.
I've discovered 2 beautiful circles of ladies that are becoming more and more dear to me and could not have come into my life at a better time.
There is much light in my life.
And praise be to God that the Light is greater than the darkness.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

being PRESENT

This evening after dinner I sat down to quickly check out Facebook and whatnot and Noah comes into the kitchen with two pillows from the couch and says, "I lie down" and proceeds to lie down on the kitchen floor. My heart totally melted. I told him if he wanted me to lie down with him of course I would, but we'd lie down in the living room. So we squished onto his little pull-out Buzz Lightyear bed with the pillows and "Mommy's blankey" and watched a Christmas Veggie Tales episode together. It was so sweet and reminded me of the importance of being PRESENT with my kids. It's all too easy to be in the same space as them and yet not giving them my attention. Because of this, I got to spend a few sweet minutes with Noah cuddling and enjoying each other.

christmas is finally here!

I caught it. Finally.
Today I got excited for Christmas. The joy, the anticipation, the excitement finally overcame me. I stopped thinking about all the work, the travel, the exhaustion and...uh, did I mention the work (?) that comes and will come with Christmas. Now more than ever with 2 little ones.
But for some reason I got into the Christmas spirit today. I read a beautiful poem my sister sent me that you can read here that just made me remember and dwell upon the true meaning of Christmas. Thinking about how Mary must have felt. Thinking about how Joseph must have felt. Wow. What a night. What an adventure. Amazing.
I watched The Polar Express with Noah (he was pretty excited about the "choo choo").
I thought about my family (MY family - Jamie, Noah, Jude). How I love them. How I'm so
thankful for them. How did I get so blessed? Why did God choose to bless ME with two healthy boys? I want to continue to become more like what Paul said he was, "Content in all situations." (my paraphrase).
Jamie asked me today if I think that I "HAVE to watch the boys" or I "GET to watch the boys". I pondered this. And then I said I have thought BOTH things.
I've been thinking about family.
I'm excited to see my family and friends and spend some time with them.
I'm excited to see my boys and watch them interact with our families.
I'm excited to eat good food!
I am excited and thankful and humbled by how much I have in my life. Family. Friends. Support. Love. Grace. Mercy. Understanding. Health.
Wow. I am a woman blessed.
Thanks be to Jesus.
The reason for EVERY season. (cheesy? Probably. but true!)

Sunday, December 13, 2009

good and hard

Last week we were up north for some training with work. I debated whether I'd go or not, but not for very long. It was the lesser of the two evils in my mind so I decided we'd go.
It was a good week.
I got to have some really good times of fellowship and chatting with some very dear friends - usually in the evenings once the kids had all gone to sleep.
But it was still hard. Noah would have at least one tantrum per meal. Screaming and throwing himself around. It was hard. And frustrating. It's food for goodness sakes! Delicious food too!
Sigh.
But in general it was a good trip. Noah stopped his screaming at bedtimes and naptimes and slept through the night without waking up at all.
Jude woke up more frequently, but I could deal with that (aka just giving him the boob to make him go back to sleep). (Although now I'm having to help him relearn that he can sleep for longer stretches without getting food!)

Anyway, I'm glad to be back home with a WONDERFUL bed to sleep in (unlike the hard taco Jamie and I called "our bed" for 5 days!) and so far the good sleep has continued (with both boys sleeping in today - Jude 'til 8:15 and Noah 'til 8:50!).

Jason Mraz

Today I heard this on the radio:


Needless to say I was hooked. :)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Ponderings of my heart

I stepped out briefly this afternoon to pick up a few things from the store (ie. cold medicine!) while Jamie stayed back with both boys. I briefly reflected/reminisced about my days before kids. What did I do with all my time? Did I feel such reward and purpose? Did I feel such frustration and anger? Did I see such ugliness in me? Did I experience such personal growth? Did I receive such love and grace? 


 

There is a season for everything. 


 

I still miss those days sometimes. 

Then when I got home Jamie brought it up, "Remember before we had kids?" 

Yeah. I remember. Sorta. But I'd never wish away my boys for what we had then. 

There is a season for everything.


 

Then I thought about Noah. About his days. What he does all day long, what he must think...

The first year of a child's life looks so simple, easy, almost boring...but on the inside their brains are buzzing. They are learning SO MUCH. Even on the outside, when one stops to think about all the changes they go through, everything they need to and do learn...it's amazing! 


 

There is a season for everything.


 

I was sitting in the doctor's office waiting room last week with Jude and two little chatty girls (they were 6 and 7 years old - they told me) were talking a mile a minute. It was fun. I mostly just smiled and asked questions - they did a LOT of talking. One of them asked me if Jude could talk. Then she asked me if he could walk. I thought this was funny. Mainly because she had a 15 month old brother sitting in her Mom's lap. To kids...things happen at such a different rate in their heads than in ours. They measure things by sleeps, or the length of a Sponge Bob show (or whatever kids that age watch). We measure things by years. By semesters. By seasons. 


 

I guess I've just been pondering a lot these days. I think it's the Christmas season. 


 

There is a season for everything.


 

Noah already seems to be growing up into a little boy and yet he's still so young. The extremes he falls into - one second a little boy, putting on his socks by himself and saying, "I deed eet!" and the next second throwing a screaming fit on the floor like a baby unable to communicate with words. Sometimes I wish I could throw myself on the floor and scream.


 

There is a season for everything.


 

Uh, except for maybe throwing yourself on the floor and screaming. 


 

I told Jamie the other day, "I've never been a Mom to two little boys before.". It's hard. I'm not going to lie. But it's good. It's really good. And it's stretching me. I always knew I was somewhat lazy, but becoming a Mom has shown me how lazy and selfish I really am. I still fall back into my lazy, selfish tendencies (uh, all the time...) but becoming a Mom was the best thing that happened to me. It's made me - or at least it's MAKING me - into a better person. 
The thing is, I just don't want to become a DIFFERENT person completely. Just a better one. A person who is so much closer to becoming who Christ had in mind when he thought of me before the foundations of the earth were created. 


 

There is a season for everything.


 

Thursday, November 26, 2009

door

It's going to be an interesting Thursday...
Today I had a glorious sleep-in 'til about 8:45. Jamie got up with Noah and since I fed Jude at around 6 he is actually still sleeping (it's 9:20). So I got dressed and came down and started making Noah some toast. As I did so, Noah was babbling away and "spelling" words on our fridge with his alphabet magnets. Then I did a double take and realized that ONLY the letter magnets were on the fridge. If you've seen our fridge you will KNOW that there is an overabundance of magnets on the bottom half of our fridge for Noah to play with. So I took a look quickly into the living room and then I asked Noah, "Where are all the magnets?" He turns immediately and points me to the garbage under the sink. It's open. And there are over 20 magnets and toys (and a book) in the garbage! I'm almost already laughing about it as I type this, but at the time I was stunned.
I just asked him why he threw all his magnets in the garbage and he said "DOOR." I guess because there was a door and it was fun to open and shut.
I had actually noticed him throwing garbage away and being "my little helper" recently. It was cute and helpful and he would often throw garbage away without being told. However I didn't think through the possible ramifications of throwing ANYTHING away without being told.
Altogether there was a megablock, about 15 magnets, his fridge car wash toy, and a book (The Master Plan of Evangelism).
He watched me wipe down each item and we had a talk about not opening the garbage anymore without asking Mama.
Oh good times being a parent.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

tweet!

I think the world just shrunk exponentially.
Here I sit in my house in 'lil old Guelph with my two boys and husband and I actually got "spoken" to by someone famous. Someone as famous as Ben Stiller. Actually, Ben Stiller himself.
The wonder of Twitter!
And at first I didn't even care, I was doing it for my friend Timmy who was inviting Ben to see Bob Newhart with him in December. But then when I actually got a reply back from Ben...I was overcome with girlish "awe-of-celebrity"ness. I'm lame, I know. But it was kinda cool!
Here it is in all its famousness: http://twitter.com/RedHourBen/status/6059547375

You can also read Timmy's letter to Ben Stiller here: http://timmyboyle.blogspot.com/2009/11/open-letter-to-ben-stiller.html

Monday, November 23, 2009

in love...

In other news...today I saw a UPS truck idling outside our house and I couldn't see anyone in the driver's seat. And then someone got in and the truck drove away. I didn't hear any knock or the door bell. I had just been upstairs getting Jude who was hollering away, but I would have heard the doorbell. Anyway, so I peeked outside and there was a box sitting there with a sticker on top that said the most exciting words: Tiny Prints.
MY CHRISTMAS CARDS ARE HERE!!!
I cannot tell you how excited I was to see that box. I hummed and hawed for weeks about whether I'd go with Tiny Prints again for my Christmas card this year. We did last year and it was gorgeous and I loved it. This year money is a bit tighter and Tiny Prints aren't exactly CHEAP. But one day I opened my email to find a really good discount code that I could use for Tiny Prints that would save me over $30!
That settled it. I would go with Tiny Prints!
I salivated and ogled all the different designs I could go with and tried to figure out which picture(s) I'd use. (Oh pictures. That is another topic for another post on another day.) I finally decided on one and when it came today and I took it out of its wrapping - it was even more beautiful than I thought it would be. I love my Christmas cards.
I absolutely ADORE Tiny Prints - they are fast, their paper quality is AMAZING, their designs are gorgeous, the colours are vibrant and beautiful and they have great customer service. If you like REALLY NICE STATIONARY (and don't mind paying a wee bit more for it) I would definitely recommend Tiny Prints.
And unfortunately for YOU I'm not posting a sneak preview of my Christmas cards. You'll have to wait until the week before Christmas for that little bit of goodness.

***(Unfortunately) I did not receive anything from Tiny Prints for this RAVE review. Maybe next year? ***

those boys...

Does it count if your baby sleeps through the night but your toddler wakes up and screams for an hour?
I don't think it does.
They like to tag team me.
*pouts*
It's not fair.
Oh well.
Jude was actually asleep by 7:20ish(?) and surprisingly hasn't woken up. Often he'll wake up about an hour after going to sleep (settling into longer sleeping patterns?) but tonight he didn't. Not sure what that means other than he was REALLY tired - (no kidding. The kid was CA-RAAAANKY!) I guess we'll see how tonight goes.
My prediction:
Noah will sleep all the way through the night but Jude will wake up once to feed and then be up around 7.
Those boys...

Sunday, November 22, 2009

yummers

This weekend myself and the rest of the bridal party threw a bridal shower for my sister. It was a huge success and the reward was in how amazed and thankful and overwhelmed (in a good way) my sister was during and after the shower. Here is just a "taste" of what we all enjoyed!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

consider your options

I'm still processing all of this, but I wanted to share a few thoughts on childbirth.

Today I was chatting with a few ladies about labour and birth. Some have children and some don't. I think what I came away with was that I feel frustrated by how many women feel that they just "can't" do natural childbirth. That they just aren't capable of it. Which is such crap. (In my opinion).

Now I don't by any means believe that I am superior or better than any of those women because I chose to have natural childbirths, but I think it's the mindset from the very start that is predominant and says that "You can't do it on your own, you definitely need drugs but it's likely that you'll need a C-section."

Now that's not to say that some women definitely need to be in the hospital and having a C-section because of some condition or situation that they or their baby is currently in. But to be low-risk and to choose to load up on the drugs because you think you won't be strong enough is like saying that you shouldn't try and do a marathon because it'll hurt and you might not make it. Why not just try? I suppose if you're really concerned you could have a golf cart follow behind you in case you collapse and can't make it a single step more...

I just feel like women need to feel empowered by the childbirth experience instead of shying away from it - it's natural! It's normal! It's a part of who we are as women! We help the human race to continue existing!!! That is AMAZING. That is HUGE. Bringing a child into this world is painful, yes, but it's also so incredible. It's a reflection of what RAISING a child is like. It's painful at times, but it's also incredible. Incredibly rewarding! Incredibly painful!
Childbirth is just the start of that process and to skip over that is robbing yourself in a sense.

Now I know that I've been blessed to have relatively easy births. Okay...easy births. BUT, I wouldn't do it any other way. Other women I know who have experienced both a birth with drugs/C-section and natural childbirth say that there is NOTHING like natural childbirth. The absolute HIGH you are on afterward is unlike anything else. To be able to say, "I DID IT. I brought a human life into this world!" now THAT is an amazing thing to say.

These are my thoughts, and I harbour no judgment toward women who CHOOSE to do something else, but I guess my main point is...if you are pregnant and thinking about your labour and birth plan (which I'm thinking you will at some point!) PLEASE consider ALL your options. Think through what's best for you and for your baby (DO YOUR RESEARCH!) and then find a healthcare provider who can support you and your birth plan.

Because of my amazing midwives I was able to have my second home birth. They fought for me to get my antibiotics administered at home. They got me a second opinion from a doctor who gave me a prescription for the antibiotics I needed. If it had been up to my doctor I would have had a hospital birth which would have been a complete waste of my time and tax payers money since everything went so smoothly. I am so thankful to have had my two home birth experiences and I am so thankful for my midwives.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

running

Lately when I've seen Noah run, it makes me think of this:



It's true!

a plethora of things...

Wow. I've got a lot of thoughts swirling around in my head to blog about. I think I'll just make one gigantically long entry and let you sort your way through it.

1. Naps.
My boys are both refusing to nap right now but I'm refusing to get them up. They BOTH need a nap so...here I sit. It was quiet for a bit, but now Noah is talking to himself and Jude is crying. We shall see where this leads.

2. Flip.
I'm SO EXCITED about my new Flip Video Camera. My parents got me a gift card to a mall for my birthday but I didn't know what I wanted. I want clothes, but not for this body. Maybe my body about 1 or 2 sizes smaller. But not this one. So...what was it to be? A whack load of little things? Sometimes it's nice to get a whole bunch of little things, but I think it's also nice to have one big thing to look at think - oh yeah, my parents got me this! So I went to the mall with the boys this morning and picked it up from the store that I had called last night to put one on hold for me. I absolutely LOVE it! Thanks to my friend Mel for giving me her thoughts on it and recommendation! It's small, easy to use and makes uploading and sharing videos SUPER easy. It's perfect and I'm excited to use it!

3. This blog.
I've often thought about the hodge-podge that is this blog. A lot of people are really creative and specific when writing their blog entries. They are well crafted works of art. Each entry has a specific topic and is captivating (usually). I am not so sure my blog has ever been like that. But for some reason people keep reading it (mind you, not a LOT of people I don't think *hi Mom!*) but the one thing that's often repeated is, "I'm glad I can stay up to date with what's going on in your life through your blog". And that makes me happy. Because I have a lot of friends that I love dearly but am not able to stay in touch with regularly. But through my blog I'm able to share my life with them. The every day. The mundane. The joys and the pain that happen in my life.
The only thing is I don't get to hear what's going on in THEIR (read: YOUR) life. So maybe you should start a blog too. :D

4. Cleaning & Cooking
Recently I've become determined and found a desire to really be a good Keeper of the Home. I want to serve my family by taking care of my family and our home. The ways this works out is through cleaning and cooking (mainly). So I've given myself one (sometimes two) tasks per day to accomplish. This way I keep myself busy without (hopefully) getting overwhelmed at all there is to do. There are also so many other pros to doing this but I don't think I need to list the obvious ones.
I also want to get into good habits. Like clearing the table, doing the dishes and putting everything away each night. From the very start in my marriage, I've never been good at doing this, but when I DO, the reward of a clean kitchen makes my soul happy.
As for cooking, I'm really striving to continue to make up a meal plan every Sunday afternoon or evening. I've also found this amazing resource which I plan to make use of: http://www.soscuisine.com which is Canadian and has different plans you can subscribe to (like cooking for kids, cooking for one, cooking on a budget, etc.).
So for those who are interested, here are my tasks and the days I've allotted:
Monday: floors & front door
- vacuum, sweep, swiffer all the floors in the house
- straighten up and tidy the front door area - putting shoes, coats and other items away
Tuesday: bathrooms
- clean both upstairs and downstairs bathrooms
Wednesday: kitchen
- continue to keep up the kitchen, maybe another sweep or mop of the floor
- also can be a catch-up day if I fall behind
Thursday & Friday: laundry

I'd also like to do certain things biweekly or monthly - like changing sheets and towels, cleaning toys, and maybe doing a double or triple batch of food to put in the deep freezer. But we'll get to that after these weekly things start to become a habit and more consistent in my life.

Whew. Long post. Hope you enjoyed catching up with me!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

ugh

Classic nap rant....

Why won't my boys nap at the same time?

*sob*

Seriously. I don't even try to nap because without fail (I'm serious...EVERY SINGLE TIME) one of them cries within 10 minutes of me lying down. Usually less.
Like today. Jude woke up after his classic 45 minute nap but I hadn't finished cleaning the bathroom and I could tell he was still tired so I decided to let him cry for a bit while I finished. Well, he eventually stopped and either fell back to sleep or is just lying there quietly (I'm fine with either, quite frankly). So...I decided I would lay down for a few minutes. And a few minutes was all I got. Noah started moaning a bit. He's off and on and I'm letting him wake up fully so I don't walk into a CRANKSTER but secretly I'm hoping he'll fall back to sleep too. But by that time, Jude will have woken up.

Classic.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

woot!

Today was such a good day for me and for Noah.
We went to church and Noah did his typical FREAK OUT when we dropped him off in the nursery and I was just waiting to see his number come up on the screen for us to go get him during the service. But it never came. And neither did Jude's (although that's pretty normal - he's always pretty good, I just thought he might get hungry today by the end and while he was starting to fuss, it wasn't anything major) and Jamie and I felt so victorious at the end of the service. I turned to him and said, "Yes! No numbers! Bump it!" And we gave each other props.
Because we're kinda lame like that.
And so we heard from the nursery worker that Noah did really well. He didn't play too much, but he didn't scream and cry the whole time which is what he usually does.
And then we went to the gym later today and dropped Noah and Jude off at the playcare center. And Noah did his usual FREAK OUT again but when I came back to get him after working out he was happy as a lark, showing Elijah a block and just wandering around the room. On.His.Own.
This is an achievement because even if he was quiet before he needed to be held or in someone's lap. I'm so thrilled and just feel a weight off my shoulders because even though I was and am committed to helping Noah learn to have time away from Jamie and I, it was very hard for me to want to go to the gym knowing Noah was spaz the entire time. Because a child who is screaming bloody murder is hard on the workers and hard on the other kids in the room.
So yay for a good day and here's to hopefully many more!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

three big words

There has been so much going on and so much that I have wanted to blog about but just haven't gotten around to it.
But I'm going to hunker down - oh wait, gotta get the baby - okay NOW I'm ready to hunker down (until he starts crying again...) and tell all three of you about where I'm at these days.

Post Partum Depression.

Yep. That's me. I actually thought I had escaped it 2nd time around.

With Noah it was there. I didn't know it, but it was there. For the first 6 or so weeks of Noah's life I walked around in a perpetual state of nervousness, anxiety and paranoia. I was good at hiding it for the most part. But people close to me knew something was up. Like after the baby shower my Mom threw for me when Noah was 10 days old and at the end of it all I hid upstairs and bawled my eyes out. And then, as if by magic, the cloud was lifted and I looked back at the previous 6 or so weeks and realized, "Wow. I was SO not myself. What was up with that?"

This time the first 6 or so weeks were a dream. Jude was sweet and sleepy. He slept a lot and I was able to spend lots of time with Noah and Jamie and recup from an amazingly easy labour and birth.

And then Jamie went back to work. And I was by myself for a lot of the time. The hormones crashed and the sleep deprivation started to settle in. Big time. Noah was/is going through some sleep issues and often both boys would be up during the night. I would cry and swear in anger and desperation to sleep. And then one night I rolled over and told Jamie that I just had a thought of killing myself. And I cried some more. Because saying it out loud made it too real. And saying out loud made me realize it wasn't the first time I had thought something like this.

The next day I started talking to people. I called a counselor in my area that deals with PPD. I talked to a dear friend who is on the recovery path from depression (likely started with her second child) and some wonderful women from my church who came around me in support and love and prayer. I WANT to be a better Mommy. I WANT to feel "normal" and feel like I thought I would. I am NOT a type-A personality. I am laid back and generally relaxed. At least, I was before I had kids. I want that back.

I know I'll never be no-kids Vanessa again, and I'm totally okay with that. I love being a Mom. But I know I'm not healthy right now. And I want to be. I want to be able to cope and deal with every day stress in a "normal" way. I want to be able to feel motivation to get up and DO things (cleaning, cooking, exercising, getting OUT, visiting family and friends and having a nice, full schedule) but as it is, I find myself very stressed out if there is too much on my plate, obligations to fulfill, expectations to measure up to and it's not a fun place to be, quite frankly.

PPD is interesting in that it's not what I thought "depression" was/is. I thought if I was depressed I would be crying ALL the time (not just sometimes). I thought I would be moping around and never smiling. But that's not the case.
I have good days. Full of joy. Full of laughter. But I also have hard days. Days that are hard but shouldn't necessarily be hard. I don't cope well with increased amounts of stress and I especially don't cope well with a severe lack of sleep. I have dark moments and moments where I KNOW that this is not who I am. It's not who I want to keep being.

I want to smile more.

I want to laugh more.

I want to host big parties and not feel completely depleted of any and all energy at the end of it.

I want to sleep more. :D

I want to be more me.

I want the sunshine to outweigh the darkness.

**If you or anyone you know is dealing with PPD or any form of depression, please reach out. There are so many resources and organizations that offer help and information. Please say something. What's the worst that can happen?
**

Friday, November 6, 2009

Neon

I really like John Mayer and I REALLY like this cover by this dude.



I'll be checking his other songs out.

Youtube is a really cool thing. Think about it. All these artists (?) can put themselves out there for THE WORLD to see. It's amazing. The chance of becoming "famous" or striking rich or getting signed to a label or whatnot has probably increased exponentially.
It's an interesting phenomenon.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

expanding my musical tastes

I'm a new fan of Coeur de Pirate and this video is super cute. No idea what she's saying, but I like her. :)

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

commercial lover

If you didn't know it about me...I love good commercials. Whether they are witty, funny, sad, sweet...if it's well done, I actually don't mind commercials.
I'm in the middle of watching So You Think You Can Dance and this commercial came on:

The hilarity of it PLUS Michael Bolton's raspy voice had me literally laughing out loud.

Monday, October 26, 2009

I love soup!

Soup season is upon us and along with some old favourites I'm going to try some new and delicious looking soups this year.

Here are two I've made before and will DEFINITELY be making again:

Butternut Squash Soup and African Yam and Peanut Soup with ginger and pineapple soup.

I'm also going to try recipes I found for Tomato Bisque, White Bean and Ham Soup, and Italian Ground Beef and Veggie Soup.

Question for all your foodies/soup makers…does it make a huge difference (other than to the fat content and creaminess) if I DON'T use higher fat milks like whipping cream/heavy cream/half and half instead of say 2% milk in some of the cream-based soups?


 

Friday, October 23, 2009

neglected

I've really been wanting to blog more but just haven't found the time.
I've been going through a lot of things lately - some blogable, some not (shocking, I know) but the lack of sleep and busyness of life has ended up leaving this poor blog neglected. But I will get back into the swing of things!
A few things have happened (ha! I'm so sleep deprived that I initially wrote "Nappened" instead of "Happened") lately:
1. I turned 28! No biggie. It was nice and low key. Jamie and I went to a restaurant in Guelph that I went to once, exactly 2 years ago for my 26th birthday when I was pregnant with Noah. I absolutely loved it and have been wanting to go back ever since but for some reason kept forgetting about it. So we went. It was relaxing and delicious and Jamie and I had such good conversation...it was really nice. Like in the good old days. :)
2. I have a 12 week old baby as of today!
3. As of Sunday I'll have a 2 year old - although you'd think by looking at him and watching his behaviour that I already HAD a 2 year old.
4. I got a YMCA membership. I've been a few times. I'd like to get there more often. We'll see.

Much more to come...

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Somebody to Love

If this doesn't give you goose bumps I don't know what will. Seriously. I had full on goose bumps within seconds of the song starting and the hair on my arms was standing straight up by the end.
So. Good.



Man, I love Queen.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

on breastfeeding...

There. Now those of you who are squeamish at the thought can skip this post and go on with your lives.
So I've been thinking about breastfeeding for awhile - long enough to blog about it.
I've never been one of those women who adore breastfeeding, who love breastfeeding, who gush about what a bonding experience it is to breastfeed your child. I've also never been entirely eager to whip out the boob. That being said I'm way more free second time around. If I'm around family and Jude needs to eat, the boob comes out. Otherwise I'm armed with my trusty Hooter Hider (that's its actual name!) nursing cover.
But my reasons for breastfeeding are simple:
1. It's free. Formula is so expensive. I remember gasping in shock when I purchased a tin of it as I started weaning Noah off the boob. So expensive! And especially now as newborns eat so much and so often I can't imagine all the formula I'd go through. Which leads to my next point...
2. It's easy (in a matter of speaking). It's easy in that I don't have to prepare a bottle, measure out formula, boil water and let it come to room temperature and then clean it all out (which can be particularly pesky with all the little parts bottles come with these days). Sure it's not "easy" at first getting the technique and getting baby to latch properly but if you stick with it long enough it is easy.
So...while everyone knows "breast is best" for baby and all the stuff you hear...I'm not going to push it on any mother for the wonderful experience because you can have that experience when you bottle feed your child.
Sure I loved doing the "dream feed" with Noah at around 10pm every night - he was so sweetly sleeping and he could eat in his sleep (something Jude has not mastered quite yet...almost, but not quite) and I always looked forward to seeing what position he'd be lying in or what his facial expression would be. It was a sweet experience, but not exclusive to breastfeeding by any means.
Anyway...I just wanted to put that out there for the blogosphere to know. I breastfeed, but purely for practical reasons.
I'm lazy and I'm cheap.
And there you have it, folks.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

lured

It's 11:48pm and do you know where your children are?

I know where mine are.
In bed.
Asleep.
Where I should be.

Dang. Why is it that I am lured by the siren call of the internet? So much to read, catch up on, social media stuff (uh...anyone tweet me yet?) and oh yes...blogging. I officially have no time to blog during the day time and evenings are when Jamie and I hang out/catch up/have "dates" so when is there left to blog? Nights.

Dang. I promised myself I'd get to bed earlier and I will pay for it tomorrow. Or tonight.

OR MAYBE

Jude will sleep through the night tonight!!!!

Yeah.
maybe.

Yes. I just spent the last (I can't do math this late) 4 minutes blogging this when I could have been brushing my teeth before hopping into bed.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

being a sick mommy

The other day I took a call from a co-worker of Jamie's.
She asked how my weekend was and I told her that it was okay but not great because I had got a cold. She then said she could totally relate. Part of me wanted to stop her right there and tell her she likely could NOT relate but I thought that would be rude and she proceeded to tell me how she too had come down with some sort of sickness and spent Saturday sleeping. That same part of me (the rude part) then wanted to say something to the effect of, "And that is the difference between those who have kids and those who don't." Spending Saturday in bed (sick or not) sounds amazing right about now.
Is there really a better way to spend your day than in bed?!?!
In my current sleep-deprived state, I think not.

Anyway, the rude part of me did not say those things (my filter still works at this point) and we commiserated about how rough it is to be sick.
But...that's one of the downsides of being a Mom. And I guess I just need to suck it up. Because there are a lot of upsides. :)

Friday, September 18, 2009

full

As I look forward to this next year I'm so excited!
Who knew my life could be so full and exciting?!

Here are some things I'm excited about both little and big (in chronological order):
1. October 2-4 - I'll be up North in beautiful Haliburton with my boys and about 200 university students on a C4C retreat. I love it at this time of year - the air is so fresh, the leaves are gorgeous and the lake is so relaxing. I'm sure Noah will love tromping around outside.
2. October 5th? - or around this time I hope to go to Chudleigh's apple farm with our friends and their kids. It's nice to just be outside, picking apples and seeing Noah discover and enjoy new things. We did this last year and it was so much fun! Plus...eating apples off the tree...priceless.
3. Thanksgiving! Love it.
4. My birthday! October 21st. I don't have anything planned yet...not sure if I will or not, but birthdays are always fun.
5. Noah's birthday! He turns 2 on October 25th. I can't believe I'll have a 2 year old! I want to make these for him.
6. Jamie's birthday! He turns 28 on November 6th. Maybe we'll do something fun! :)
7. Christmas! Although I do enjoy Christmas it has lately become busy and slightly stressful. I'd like to take more time this year to enjoy it and prepare my heart more this year as I build into my boys the true meaning of Christmas.
8. My sister's wedding! She gets married on February 27th and I'm the maid (okay, so I'm really a matron...but whatever) of honour! What a privilege and a blessing.
9. Panama!!! Jamie and I will be taking the boys and going to Panama for a missions trip in May & June and I'm actually pretty excited about it. I've always loved traveling and now that I've done it a bit more with kids, I think it'll be fun! Well, the being there will likely be more fun than the GETTING there, but...yay!
10. My bestie's wedding!!! My beautiful friend Tamsin is getting married in July and she's asked me to be her maid (yes, yes...whatever on the matron) of honour - and she's getting married in ENGLAND! So likely I'll be taking Jude with me while Jamie goes to a work conference and Noah stays with Grandma for the week.

Anyway, with 2 boys and all this coming up it surely is a full and blessed life.
Now...how to keep the main thing the main thing? I guess that's another post for another time.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Sunday, September 6, 2009

tired

What I wouldn't give for some more sleep. In fact, a dream weekend for me would be to sleep for the entire duration of it.
Last night I got Jude to bed before the 10pm feed but then when I tried to get him to feed at around 10:30pm he wouldn't wake up and he wouldn't eat in his sleep.
So I went to bed and Jude woke up at 12:30am. Grunting, farting but not eating. It was really frustrating and I felt like I was going to drop from exhaustion.
So I put him back down after a few sips at the boob since he didn't seem interested.
He woke up at around 3am I think - same thing happened.
Woke up at 5:30am - lather, rinse, repeat.

Sigh.

I am tired. I want more sleep. And I would like it right now.

We are forgoing church this morning as Jamie's working on campus all day today and I just don't have it in me to take 2 little ones by myself (and likely end up in Noah's classroom for the whole service anyway).

I'm tired.

Monday, August 31, 2009

victory

Last night my sister got engaged and some family and friends were going to meet at a restaurant and surprise my sister there post-proposal. However, the meeting time wasn't until after 8pm (and I was guessing at least after 8:30pm by the time my sister and her fiance were to show up).
So I weighed my options...
Do we bring Noah and Jude? Just Jude? Do we go at all?
Oh yes, and this was in downtown Toronto - so about...an hour+ away from home for us.
I really wanted to be there for my sister and felt bad leaving one or both boys with Jamie so I decided we should go for it. I had no idea how Noah would do being up so late, but we were going to be flexible and that was that.
Well the surprise was surprising for my sister and lovely and wonderful and I'm so glad I could be there for it all!
Noah was a sweetie pie and wanted to cuddle up in my arms a few times with a blanket and his soother - he knew it was past his bedtime but was very sweet and didn't act out at all. At one point he was playing under the table and started clapping and saying "Yay!" when everyone cheered for my sister and her fiance. In all, he was up about 3 hours past his bedtime! Jude slept through the entire thing (shouting and "yay"ing and clapping and everything) and both boys were great.
I used to think I was a very laid back person pre-kids and was shocked after Noah was born to find out that I, indeed did appreciate (and often NEEDED) structure and predictability to my days - it was at least SOMETHING I could count on to happen if nothing else did.
Now that our routine has been solidified for many, many months now it's nice to break from it all every now and then and the fact that both boys slept through the whole ride home and Jude was even able to stretch the time between feedings to about 3.5 hrs (instead of 2.5 or 3!) was simply a wonderful (if not hoped for) bonus.
In my quest to be "flexible" I am victorious.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

bye bye

It is the end of an era.

Last night as I was brushing my teeth, my tongue stud fell out. Well, okay, the entire thing did not fall out, but the ball on the top had become unscrewed and when I spit in the sink, it came out and down the drain it went.
I have many other little fasteners (can I just write "balls"?) for the top of my tongue stud, but I stood there and debated - to leave out or not to leave out the tongue stud?

I decided to leave it out.

I am not defined by my tongue stud. I am past the phase where I hoped that when people realized I had a tongue stud, they'd think I was so cool. Tongue stud or not, I think I can be pretty cool. (When I'm not so sleep deprived?)

Anyway, 9 years ago I got my tongue stud (in New Zealand of all places!).

Last night I took it out. (Or rather decided to leave it out.)

I don't regret it. I don't think.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

music

So even in my new Mom/hermit-like state, I am managing to hear (everybody cheer for the internet on the count of three...) about fantastic music - namely, Grizzly Bear's Two Weeks. This song is so epic it inspires fans to make amazing videos. Take this one for example:

Two Weeks - Grizzly Bear from Gabe Askew on Vimeo.



Or how about this one:



Amazing.

Such a good song. I think I'll have to investigate this band called Grizzly Bear. I don't think I have enough credit on iTunes anymore to purchase the entire album but at the very least, I may just purchase this song.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

8 things

8 Things I’m Looking Forward To:

1. getting more than 3 hrs of sleep in a row
2. going out on Friday for Starbucks with Jen
3. autumn
4. fitting into my pre-pregnancy clothes
5. being at full support
6. seeing Noah & Jude play together one day
7. getting a haircut
8. going on a date with Jamie some day soon

8 Things I Did Yesterday:

1. nursed Jude (numerous times)
2. napped
3. ate some amazing shishkabobs & peach pie (courtesy of Amanda!)
4. took pictures of Jude
5. went to the library
6. went on Facebook
7. played with Noah
8. visited with Beth & Dorrie

8 Things I Wish I Could Do:

1. Sleep for more than 3 hrs at a time
2. lose weight more quickly
3. resist sweets
4. go on a vacation
5. sing really well
6. act in a musical/play
7. Not have bags under my eyes
8. sit outside and not sweat to death with all this humidity

8 Shows I Watch:

1.How I Met Your Mother
2. 24
3. Smallville
4. LOST
5. Heroes
6. The Office
7. Beverly Hills 90210 (on DVD)
8. Prison Break

8 Favorite Fruits:

1. Strawberries
2. Blackberries
3. Apples
4. Raspberries
5. Bananas (but only before they get too ripe)
6. Clementine Oranges
7. Mangos
8. Pineapple

8 Places I’d Like To Travel To:

1. Greece
2. New Zealand (again)
3. Fiji
4. French Polynesia
5. Italy
6. England (to visit my friend living there)
7. Thailand
8. France

8 Places I’ve Lived:

1. Toronto, ON
2. Kitchener, ON
3. Guelph, ON
4. Cambridge, NZ
5. Dar es Salaam, Tanzania (but only for a few months at a time)
6. That's it...unless you count the times I've moved IN Guelph
7.
8.

Only do it if you want to!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

One of “those Moms”

Oh my word. I just realized something. I'm one of "those Moms". "Those Moms" were the Moms that were posting on Facebook after their kiddies were born how much they loved being a Mom and how being a Mom was so great, blah blah blah. I hated those Moms when I first had Noah. Being a Mom was hard. Tiring. I had sore lady parts, a sore chest, experiencing major sleep deprivation and what the heck was my body doing now? Sure I could sleep on my stomach now that I wasn't pregnant, but sleep? What was that again? And uh, once my milk came in there was no way I was sleeping on my stomach with these girls aching every hour to have some sort of release. I was paranoid, anxious and experiencing a mild case of PPD (post partum depression). I couldn't get through singing "You are my sunshine" to Noah without bawling my eyes out or having to stop because of the asteroid-sized lump in my throat. I was anti-social, bothered by excessive noise and always "heard" the baby crying even if he wasn't.

But this time around is like a breath of fresh air. I am relaxed. Confident. And I'm happy. Jude is laid back, and when he does fuss, it's not the end of my world. It's definitely not the end of his either. He figured out the whole breastfeeding thing and took to it like a champ. Speaking of champs, he poops like one too. He does what babies do. Eat, sleep and poop. And this phase is so short – and I KNOW THAT this time around. And despite being, yes, a bit sleep deprived, I am enjoying it all.

Sure Noah is acting out a wee bit – today's trip to the grocery store was evidence of that – but like all of us, he's tired but doing well. He loves his baby brother and is sweet and gentle with him.

I had just lain down for a nap when my facebook status came back at me like a slap in the face: "Vanessa Strickland loves being a Mommy to her two little boys."

Yep. I'm definitely one of "those Moms".

Now…for that nap. (Jude will wake up in approximately 7 minutes – called it.)

Saturday, August 1, 2009

We meet our little man

He's here!
Jude Calvin Strickland was born at home on July 31st at 1:44pm. He weighs 9lbs12oz and is 22.5 inches long. He's one big fella!
You can check out his blog at: http://judesjournals.blogspot.com

Thursday, July 30, 2009

S&S v. 2.0

Had another stretch and sweep today. Carol said it was a big one and was amazed at my coping skills. It was mostly uncomfortable and labour will be more painful anyway so as long as it helps get baby OUT I'm fine to try it!
Not much else to update - I've been crampy and whatnot, but that's nothing new as of the past few weeks. And I'm tired. I'm definitely going to take a nap when Noah does. I'm zonked!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

grumpster

This may be gross, but it's my blog so don't read it if you don't like it.
(On an entirely different note, I'm such a grouch today...)
Anyway, so I've been losing mucous all day long. Dark and blood tinged...I never had this with Noah. It's a good sign I know, but I'd just like my water to break already and things to be underway. Or to start getting whammo blammo contractions. I know I'll regret wishing for pain when it's actually upon me, but right now ANYTHING seems better than waiting.
Plus Noah has totally been acting up - likely in response to my bad mood I'm sure. But either way, it's not helping anything.
Poor Jamie is just trying not to rock the boat while at the same time wishing this baby here as well!
Sigh.
Tomorrow is another S&S so hopefully if I don't go into labour tonight, that tomorrow something will happen.
Ugh.

confirmation

Okay NOW I lost my mucous plug. That was gross. But that was it. For sure.
Now to get things moving!

5 days overdue *graphic details

5 days overdue now.
Over the past few nights I've had cramping and Braxton Hicks contractions around 10:30pm but then nothing much more than that.
This morning I am fairly certain I lost my mucous plug. It was tinged with blood, so I'm thinking that's what it was.
The baby also dropped quite a bit. I have a huge space now between my chest and my belly! These are all positive signs, I just worry about going overdue past 10 days. I don't want an induction and I don't want any medical interventions, so I'm hoping for sooner rather than later.
Today is rainy and pretty boring so far. It's making me sleepy. And somewhat grumpy.
Come on baby!!!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

midwife appt

Had a stretch AND sweep today. Carol (Heather is now on holidays) did it and said that I was likely at 3cm and not 4cm. But that she could stretch me to 5. Anyway, so it was uncomfortable, but not unbearable by any means. If I haven't had this baby by Thursday I'll go in for another one. And then possibly one on Saturday if he's not here by then.
Everything else seems good, we're just waiting on contractions/waters to break/things to start HAPPENING!
I'm going to eat and then rest.

Monday, July 27, 2009

3 days overdue.
Annoying, but I'm mostly over it. I'm resigned to the fact that I will indeed be pregnant for forever.
Today we decided to "risk" it and go to Burlington to visit with Jamie's Mom and Nana. We went out for lunch at the Mandarin and I had the greasiest Chinese food I could (apparently that's supposed to help start labour) and then we visited Burlington's Fire Station (Noah has now been to Waterloo, Guelph and Burlington fire stations). After that we thought we'd take a trip to the Burlington mall, which is actually quite a nice mall (they just got a XXI store and are getting a Bath and Body Works soon - all the stores are really nice too) but by the end of it I was exhausted.
Noah was treated to a Hot Wheels Fire Truck from Nana and a kiddie pool from Great Nana and then he napped all the way home.
I haven't felt a twinge or anything out of the ordinary. Not even the usual cramping/stomach tightening I've been having since at least Wednesday.
Noah was 4 days overdue. If I go past 4 days I think I might be quite frustrated. I DON'T want an August baby (not that there's anything wrong with August babies...).
I feel like I'm having a grown up temper tantrum. Sorta.
I waver between being totally blase about still being pregnant and then completely grumpy and impatient.
Every night we go to bed thinking, "Tonight could be the night!" and every morning we wake up with me still pregnant and no baby or imminent labour.
Right now I'm washing the sweet little outfits my Mom bought for the baby and we'll get around to eating dinner soon enough I reckon.
Le Sigh.
Tomorrow I have a midwife appointment at noon which I hope not to make it to. But likely I will be there - still pregnant.

Friday, July 24, 2009

what's a girl gotta do?

It's due date day. Actually it's almost over. 11:04pm. And still no baby.
I went for a mother-long walk - 4.5 km - with Noah this morning and tried to visualize my waters breaking or major cramping coming on but nothing.
Le Sigh.
Anyway, I suppose it could happen tonight and even though I WANT it to happen that way, I doubt it will. But for goodness sakes - what more needs to happen?
An interesting thing to note:
At my midwife appointment on Wednesday, the intern Kristi said that "they" (medical professionals I assume) still don't know what makes labour start (naturally I'm assuming as there are many hormonal inductions, etc.). Whether it's the baby that sends a message, or releases some sort of hormone or whether it's the mother's body or what...
I found this fascinating.
And so cool.
The mystery of the human body, pregnancy and birth. Very interesting.
Anyway, so...Jamie and I just watched 3 episodes of season 7 of 90210, ate some chips and dip and I suppose I should get to sleep now...but not before I take my WEEK 40 pregnancy picture.
Come on baby!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

update *note, slightly graphic

Yesterday was my midwife appointment.
We did the usual. I got weighed (I've gained 24lbs this pregnancy), tested my urine (all good - no extra protein or sugars) and then briefly chatted.
I didn't really have any questions except, "Can I get a stretch and sweep today?"
So I talked about it with Kristi, the intern and she went and got Heather (my midwife) and they said, sure! Let's go for it!
So I lay down, they felt the baby's position - he's head down, but not fully engaged (dropped) yet and I'm measuring at about 41cm.
Then we discussed what they would be doing (I won't go into that here) and how they wouldn't do a "sweep" as the baby was not as low as they'd like him to be but they'd do the "stretch" part as well as just checking to see if I was dilated at all.
Well, surprise, surprise...I am dilated.
Um..4cm.
4cm!?!?!?!
WHAT?!?!
Apparently I had a contraction while they were checking me and Heather said, "Are you feeling this contraction?" and I laughed because I barely felt anything at all!
I was amazed and it was so weird to feel the baby moving while they were "stretching" the cervix.
I still can't believe I'm already 4cm and I feel practically nothing!
So all those mild cramps I've been having over the past few weeks have probably been something as opposed to the "nothing" I thought they were.
We ended the appointment basically saying that all I needed were some strong contractions and/or my water to break and I'd be in full-on labour.
I left feeling excited and with my hopes high that I'd see the baby that day!
I called my Mom and sister to let them know what was happening and that I'd already had a few contractions on the way home. They decided that they'd drive the 40 minutes even if nothing happened and hang out here just in case.
I had mild tightening and contractions randomly for the rest of the day and a bit of a "bloody show" later that evening, but this morning I woke up and no baby.
Needless to say I am disappointed but I can't imagine this baby holding out for too much longer. Who knows, though? I certainly don't, but I wish I did.
I still am amazed at how my body is dealing with being pregnant. Who gets to 4cm and has no idea?!?! Crazy crazy.
Anyway, Noah has been really "off" today and he needs a nap now so off I go...here's hoping we see a baby today! (Specifically the baby that is currently in my belly.)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

grumpster

I'm a grump.
I was never like this when I was pregnant with Noah.
But I am a grump.
I want this baby to come, and I want him to come NOW. Well, I would like LABOUR to start now. Wouldn't that be ironic if it did as I was typing this?
Anyway, so today I was absolutely exhausted and took a nap in the morning and a nap in the afternoon - well, I lay down and dozed in the afternoon for a bit. It makes me wonder if I just didn't sleep well, or if my body is getting ready for labour. At this point, I'd read into anything as a sign that labour is coming...
It's pretty much all I can think about. There really isn't much else going on in my life, nothing to distract me or keep me busy. It's just all about waiting for this baby to come and that is making me one bored, antsy and grumpy pregnant woman.
I know, I know, I'm not even at my due date yet...but still! I might as well be - it's only 3 days away!
Factors that contribute to my extreme grumpiness:
1. I feel less able to travel around and do things because of the quick labour I had with Noah, I fear that I will have even less time to get to where I need to be should I be in Toronto, etc. So I feel trapped.
2. Everybody (well, my good friends in Guelph) has gone away to staff training in BC. So people are doing things, seeing other people and I'm not. Phooey.
3. It's the middle of summer, nothing is going on (like with Noah we were in the middle of a campaign on campus and there was lots to keep all of us occupied) and so it's making the waiting even MORE of a big deal and every day he DOESN'T show up is another uneventful day.
4. I don't fear the transition to being a Mom. I am a Mom already. Life will be busy, but not too much different. Bring it on.

So there you have it, folks...I'm a grump.

grumpster

No baby yet.
I'm pretty grumpy about it too.
I never even felt remotely close to this annoyed at still being pregnant when I was pregnant with Noah, but I think I was busy, it was mid-semester on campus, we were doing an outreach and I was enjoying my last days as a childless married woman. This time though, I'm a Mom, sick of waiting and a teeny bit concerned this baby is going to just plop right out of me regardless of where I am in seconds flat. That and the fact that I was convinced this baby would come by now. But I guess it still is before my due date and...stuff could still happen. Any day! Any hour! Any minute! I'm just tired of waiting.
Tomorrow I have a midwife appointment and Heather suggested last time that I get a stretch and sweep and I was unsure at the time. I feel a bit torn, though, because part of me thinks that Noah came only 4 days past my due date on his own terms with no stretch and sweep. But part of me is just plain tired of waiting and wondering when, when, when?!!
So...I think we'll talk it out tomorrow and see what happens.

Monday, July 20, 2009

good eats

Lately I have been baking and cooking and then freezing what I've made to prepare for after this baby comes (whenever he decides he's ready...ahem!) and I'm actually quite excited to eat what I've made:
1. Veggie Pasta Shells
Oh my word, these were so delicious looking as I made them (with the help of my wonderful assistants, Shereen and Heather) but we resisted. It's odd, because I don't usually go for vegetarian type meals - I always feel like a meal is incomplete without meat (that rhymes!) but these seemed so hearty (and cheesy!) that I couldn't resist.
2. Chili
How can you go wrong with chili? Especially one loaded with vegetables, beans and ground beef? This one is going to be good. PLUS I happened to have a round loaf of sourdough bread already frozen so that will be a delicious meal.
3. Shepherd's Pie
I cheated. My Mom made this one for me - but she said it made her house smell really good! :)
4. Muffins, muffins, muffins!
I made blueberry bran, berry bran, and my Mom made raspberry lemon. I'm excited! :)
5. My wonderful friend Jen made me her delicious spinach tortellini soup so that should be great!

Oh and my Mom threw in some Spicy Jerk Chicken which I'm quite excited for!
Tomorrow I'll be baking a spaghetti casserole which sounds hearty and delicious! I forgot that I had defrosted ground beef and it's been sitting in my fridge for about a week so I need to do something with it...it's still okay though, right?

Now if only this baby would show up so we can get the good eatin' on! :)

But that's a post for another time...

39 weeks + 3 days

a waiting game

Well, it's 4 days before my due date and no baby. There was a time when I was convinced this baby was going to come so early. And then I changed my thinking to that he would come sometimes during the week before my due date. Which would be now. So I guess it's not like I'm late or anything, but I think I anticipated so much that now I'm feeling like he should be here already or something!
Seriously!
Being pregnant is okay, I'm just plain sick of the "waiting" game. I think because I feel like I can't really go too far from home what with Noah's birth only lasting 4.5 hrs and this one expected to be that or shorter!
Actually...I'd love to not be pregnant anymore. And sleep on my stomach. :)
Also, my wonderful friends Mel and Uche had their baby boy last night. I'm so thrilled for them - but we were due within days of each other and now I'm trying to tell this baby that it's HIS turn to show up! :)
I guess it's all in good time and it's cool to know that God already has set his birthday and KNOWS the day that our beautiful little boy will be born. I only hope it's today. :)

Thursday, July 16, 2009

midwife appointment

Today I had a midwife appointment.
Nothing too eventful - we talked about booking a biophysical ultrasound for 41 weeks (if I make it that far) that will look at things like the baby's movement, measurements, fluid levels, etc. just to make sure everything is okay and still in proper working condition.
The baby had a good heartbeat - he was resting more this time - mid 130's compared to his usual 140's.
His head is not engaged but is down and he seems to be in a good position.
Oh and I've gained 23lbs so far. Not too shabby!
Next week I'll go in on Wednesday and possibly get a stretch and sweep depending on how things are going. I feel ready for this baby and hope I don't even make it until Wednesday, but we'll see what happens I guess.
I can't believe this is all happening again. Soon I'll be holding my little baby...
Jamie said to me the other day "Do you realize that if things went like they did with Noah's birth that you could be holding your baby by 7pm tonight?" (It was 2:30pm in the afternoon). That was freaky.
I'm tired. Should go to bed and maybe get some rest - last night I couldn't fall asleep until after midnight even though I was in bed around 10:30. I can't wait to sleep on my stomach again.

Monday, July 13, 2009

a week and a half to go!!!

Well, it was a busy but really good weekend. Shereen and I got some baking/cooking/cleaning done and my deep freeze is nice and full of delicious foods for after the baby comes. :)
I did think to myself last night "Please don't come tonight, baby. I'm too tired!" and then I dreamt that I had the baby overnight (didn't dream about labour/birth) and we (even Noah!) were holding the baby in the morning and resting and then people were going to come over and visit but we were worried that people would come too soon and we wouldn't be ready (ie. things cleaned up from the birth, etc.).
Then I woke up and breathed a sigh of relief that I made it through the night without going into labour. :)
Oh and then I realized that my throat was sore and then I got mad that I caught the cold that Noah and Jamie have had. Oh well...I guess it was only a matter of time.
A week and a half to go until my due date! So hard to believe, but at one point I didn't think I'd make it this long - I totally thought baby was going to come early. I'm definitely glad he still stuck it out inside me for this long...for sure!
I also got some handmedowns this morning from my friend Jen and have plenty of onesies and sleepers now for the first few months. Phew!
I'm sad, though, because I've definitely misplaced two of my favourite onesies: the one that Erin gave to us for Noah and it was teeny tiny and blue and had a Toronto Maple Leaf on the front and another one that Shereen gave us for Noah that was camo patterened and says: You Can't See Me on it. :( I liked both of those.
I did find my "Got Milk?" onesies, though!
Okay, time to lay down for the last part of Noah's nap!

Friday, July 10, 2009

38 weeks

update

So, much to update on...
I had my appointment with Dr. Ben and he gave me the prescription for both the first dose of antibiotics (the one they want you to come to the hospital for) and the subsequent doses.
At first it seemed as though he wouldn't, but I explained to him that my first home birth was quick and straightforward and that I was concerned that if I had to go to the hospital for my first dose that I wouldn't make it back home for a home birth.
He seemed to understand and quickly wrote the prescription.
I wasn't going to have wasted that hour sitting in his waiting room to NOT get the prescription!
So hooray!
The home visit with the midwives went well. They gave me a few suggestions for what they'd like to see in the bedroom (ie. lower table to set up things/place to measure, look at baby, etc.) and we talked a lot about GBS and what it would mean for me to NOT have the antibiotics, etc.
I also had an appointment at the midwifery office yesterday and was a tool and showed up 1/2 hour early. Oh well. I showed them the prescription and asked how much it usually cost and ended up getting the meds for free since they had extra from previous patients (am I allowed to blog about that?) that went unused!
I had measured 39 weeks when I was at 37 weeks but last week the growth had slowed down to 39.5. My weight is also the same as it was 2 weeks ago.
I keep forgetting to ask if they have a guess on this baby's weight or not...last time they said (earlier on in the pregnancy) that I was looking to probably have a 7 or 8lber. Noah was almost 9lbs and I'm hoping for smaller this time around, but we'll see.
I have all my home birth stuff ready in a basket in our room, a deep freeze that is slowly getting filled with food for after the baby comes, and a house that is slowly getting some final touches.
I'd still like to make the hospital/nursing gown and have bought the material, so all I need is to hunker down and do it!
Hmmm....what else?
I guess now it's just a waiting game. Sometimes I think I might go any day now, but other times I just feel like I'll be here probably until my due date. So who knows?

Sunday, July 5, 2009

yikes!

Every time I look at my ticker I am amazed.
18 days!?!?!
This time I started to get nervous.
Nervous about labour.
Nervous about being ready.
Nervous about how our little family is going to change completely.
Nervous about whether I'll make it to things like: my dr's appt on Wednesday, friends coming over on Wednesday, a BBQ on Sunday, weddings, etc.

If only I KNEW when this baby was coming...that might help a bit.
But I'd still be slightly nervous about the labour.

37 weeks (+2 days)


My eggo is definitely preggo.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

full term tomorrow!

Wow. I just looked at my ticker. Less than 21 days 'til my due date. That's crazy. Where has the time gone?
I wanted to blog about breastfeeding and some other issues, but I'm just so tired. I think I need to go to bed.
Tomorrow I'll be full-term! 37 weeks. Wow. It's funny because when I was pregnant with Noah I had no qualms about traveling and leaving town for the weekend or whatever when I was 37 weeks. I just KNEW I wouldn't go early. I just had a feeling. And I was right.
But this time around, I'm not so sure. I'm thinking that baby will come sometime the week before I'm due, but I'm hoping for a teeny bit earlier than that - around the 14th so that my friend Jen will still be around before she leaves for BC for a few weeks.
But who knows? Maybe I'll be sitting around on my due date with no sign of impending labour.
Ya just never know with these sorts of things I guess.
We got a bassinet from our friends (to borrow) and I'm excited to set it up. We pretty much haven't gotten anything for this baby - other than diapers so far - so even just setting up his bed for the first few months is kinda fun. I also really enjoyed pulling out all the onesies and little outfits again. So small and sweet.
Well, I may take a look at this bassinet before I go to sleep tonight. We'll see.
Tomorrow is the home visit with the midwives and I'm looking forward to that and getting all my questions answered! Or at least...have a better idea of what's happening.

high hopes

On my way home from a wonderful (and much needed) pedicure I got a call from the midwife receptionist (Jackie, she's so nice) asking if I could write down an appointment with Dr. Ben.
I was actually quite confused as the only way I've heard of Dr. Ben is through my friend who had 2 C-sections done by him.
I took the info down and then asked, "So what is this for?" and she said she thought I knew. It's to get a prescription for the antiobiotics needed for GBS positive women!
WHAT?!?!?
I'm so trying not to get my hopes up, but I can't help it! They're up! Way up! This could be the best and easiest way out of all this crazy GBS mess! (If you say the last 2 words out loud, they rhyme!)
So that's exciting! I'll meet with him next week and I'll see my midwives tomorrow so they can give me the down low. :)
Yay!
*crossing my fingers*
It wouldn't be a pregnancy if something didn't crop up at the last minute. :)

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

bummed

So I'm bummed. I bummeth.
Today I went to see my family doctor for a cyst (at least that's what I think it is) that's grown (overnight) on my nose. I knew she would say to wait until after the baby is born or unless it grows anymore...
BUT while I was there we talked about the request that the midwives sent her to see if she'd write a prescription for the IV antibiotics I need since I'm GBS positive.
She declined to give me a prescription.
I am bummed.
Her reasoning is that if somehow labour is undetectable (ya right) and I don't get the antibiotics in time and baby contracts GBS and is really sick or whatever that being at home would be a bad place and baby wouldn't get the treatment he would need in time. So she even recommended (in not so many words) that I don't even HAVE a home birth but deliver in hospital.
Her second reasoning is for me being given the IV antibiotics at home as having some potential dangers, but I'm not worried about that at all. I'm not allergic to penicilin and I know the midwives are fully capable of administering antibiotics via IV.
She did it all very nicely and almost feeling badly for me - she said "I don't want to dash all your hopes for a home birth, but I know I am." and I don't blame her as she's just doing what she feels is best and safest, but I disagree. And I hope she can talk to the midwives and maybe be convinced otherwise, but I doubt it.
So unless we can find some other doctor who will write me a prescription, my next plan of attack is to go to the hospital, get the first dosage and come back home for a home birth.
But I am meeting with the midwives on Friday so I'll talk to them about all this then and my options.
But I am bummed. Plain out bummed.
It complicates things greatly.
UNLESS I go early and before my friend Jen leaves for BC (she would likely be able to come and watch Noah and he is totally fine with her), I will have to find someone else to come right away and watch Noah while Jamie and I head straight to the hospital for my first dose (it has to be given right away). Someone who knows Noah and is comfortable with him and who he knows as well. Someone who lives in Guelph and can get to our place as quickly as is possible until my Mom can get to our place and watch Noah for us until baby arrives.
So there's that whole headache, much less the trip to the hospital, getting into triage, getting the shot and then heading back home (maybe about an hour total?).
Let's hope this baby doesn't come TOO quickly!
Anyway, so I'm not stressed, but I am disappointed I didn't get a prescription and everything is hunky dorey.
But...it is what it is and really all I care about is everyone being healthy and well taken care of. Ideally that would be at home, but...I guess we'll just have to roll with the punches on this one.

Monday, June 29, 2009

week 36 stuff


This is me at 36 weeks after a HUGE meal at the Keg with Jamie for our 5 year wedding anniversary.
I think all that delicious food knocked the baby out as he was quite still and quiet for the following few hours.
I've been feeling EXTREMELY tight and large and often find it quite painful to transition from sitting to standing/walking. I can't imagine how I could possibly get any bigger.
I looked at my belly this morning in the mirror and concluded that I've hit the "grotesquely large" looking belly stage. There's a stage where it's cute and beautiful and then seemingly overnight, it morphs into this gigantic...thing.
I suppose it's still beautiful in a symbolic way...but man. This belly is BIG.
I am positive baby had a growth spurt - actually I think Noah had a growth spurt around this time as well. We'll see when the midwives come on Friday to measure - it will also be our home visit then too so we'll see how that goes.

Also, tomorrow I will be going to see my family doctor for a non-pregnancy related thing, but while I'm there, I'm HOPING she will prescribe the antibiotic for GBS so that I don't have to travel into the hospital to get it. I am willing to beg for it at this point...
Also, I re-read the GBS handout the midwives gave me, and at this point I'm realizing that I should have declined the test as I would have had none of the risk factors that they use to treat Mom/baby after the baby is born for GBS. Oh well. What's done is done and I am confident in the sovereignty of God - even in GBS testing. :)

This pregnancy I've found myself referring to the baby by his name (yep, we picked one out!) a lot more than I did with Noah and so am finding myself almost slipping up and revealing the name when I talk about him. It's okay...according to the ticker at the top...I've got about 25 more days (please let it be less!) so if I can keep a lid on the prego brain I should be good. :)

Friday, June 26, 2009

36 weeks


...and so tired and swollen.
And I think someone had a growth spurt...ahem.

make them go away!

While unpacking and rearranging Noah's room I came across many, many stuffed animals.
I'm talking excessive amounts of stuffed animals.
We don't need ANY MORE STUFFED ANIMALS.
There's even more in the garage in boxes that have yet to be unpacked.
It's insane. And unnecessary.
Noah's little brother will need NO stuffed animals. I could easily put some away and bring them out when he gets interested in stuffed animals - Noah would have no idea that they were even his as he doesn't play with ... uh, 90% of them.
I arranged Noah's/the boys' room yesterday and unpacked most of the clothes. I realized that I don't have nearly as many onesies as I thought I did. I could have sworn I had a TON of 0-3/6 month clothing but perhaps I borrowed a lot of it...or did a lot of laundry?
I'll have to double check in the garage, but there must be more lying around.
Anyway, it's time for my 36 week photo op.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

GBS positive

What a bummer.
I got a call from my midwives today and found out that I am indeed GBS (Group B Strep) positive. The implications from this are many:
1. the recommended procedure is that once I go into labour or my waters break, I am supposed to get an IV antibiotic. The reason for this is that there is a risk that baby may contract GBS and if so, MAY develop a disease which MAY result in death. Quick death.
2. Midwives are unable to write prescriptions for antibiotics. So my family doctor is being approached to see if she is willing to write a prescription for this antibiotic so I don't have to go to the hospital for the first dose. If she ISN'T willing, it's likely I will have to go to the hospital for the first dose. BOO.
3. Obviously the choice is mine. The chance of baby getting GBS and contracting the disease is slight, but the risk is great. Potential death. On the other hand, if the baby doesn't get GBS, he is still getting the antibiotic which changes the natural flora in his digestive tract and makes him more susceptible to yeast infections (or thrush if it's in the mouth) which greatly disrupts breastfeeding.
I'm annoyed and deflated that I am in fact GBS positive. I wasn't with Noah so this wasn't even an issue. There just seems like so many downsides to getting the antibiotic but then one gigantic pro IF and only IF this baby is the one of thousands to contract GBS. UGH.
Now I'll need to think about this and talk it over with Jamie and re-read the pamphlet on GBS.

Friday, June 19, 2009

35 weeks


I got my hurr did.

35 weeks...and counting!

I know I said this last week...but I can't believe I'm 35 weeks pregnant.
Had a midwife appointment this week (actually went to the office twice, but they didn't have my first appointment written down - their fault, not mine believe it or not!) and Noah sat happily and played with the toys in the office (I think he's getting used to going there by now).
Baby is head down with his back on my left side.
He was moving lots while Carol was listening to the heartbeat and every time he moved, his heart rate accelerated which is exactly what is supposed to happen. It was cool to hear the movements on the sonar thingy...doppler. Right.
I also did the swab for Strep B and am hoping I'm negative again. BUT I found out that even if I am positive, I don't need to go to the hospital - I can just get a prescription from my doctor and then the midwife can administer it to me at home! Hoorah! So while I hope I'm negative, at least I don't have to make that trip to the hospital and back (if I even MADE it back!).
I need to up my iron again (since I stopped taking it twice a day because of ... er ... issues) but it's better even though I am still categorized as anemic.
And my next appointment will be the home visit at our new place! Hooray! We move on Tuesday and I can't wait for it! And not a moment too soon either as we are supposed to be getting hit with a heat wave starting next week - with the humidex making it feel like it's mid 30's!
Whew!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

34 week ponderings

I can't believe I'm 34 weeks pregnant. And that I have 6 weeks or less left (well, at least I think it'll be less...who really knows, though?) to go before we meet this little guy.
Sleeping hasn't really gotten harder since I first started having trouble sleeping, so that's kinda nice. I mean, some nights are good nights, some are not so good. It's been that way since...2 or so months ago?
Going from sitting to standing can be excruciating and forget about our trip that we hoped to take Noah to the zoo for the day. There's no way I could handle walking around for a whole day! So that will have to wait until next year - that's fine, though as he'll only enjoy it even more then! :)
I can't wait to move into our place and pull out all the baby clothes and put them in the dresser. I already saw a few of Noah's old things and was all, "Awwwwww". Don't even talk to me about how small size 1 diapers are too! I got a freebie in the mail and Jamie and I just looked at it in astonishment and then stared at Big Noah...:) Noah will look so big compared to this baby at first.
Noah's going to be such a sweet older brother (I hope). Mmm...give him about 18 months and they'll be playing like best buds.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

boourns

Maybe if I didn't have so many dang blogs I would actually update this one more often.
It is probable that I have 2 or sometimes 3 blog post ideas that I want to blog about floating about in my head at any given time but usually laziness prevails and they never get written. It's kinda sad, really.
Anyway, this is a short, shallow post, but it made me laugh and so I had to blog about it.
I was chatting with a friend on Gmail Chat or whatever it's called and I used the phrase "boourns" and she remarked that she had never heard of it. I explained that it was from a Simpsons episode and of course Googled it. I came across Urban Dictionary which opened my eyes to how I was inappropriately using it - in fact, entry number 6 made me laugh out loud:

6. boourns

Alternate spelling of boo urns.

Exclamation. A cheer for The Simpsons character Montgomery Burns. Often used incorrectly by Canadians to suggest disproval of anything, rather than approval of Burns.

Obviously, "boo" and "Boo-urns" are two different and mutually exclusive words.

My, that old dog, Monty Burns has done it again! Boo-urns! Boo-urns, I say!

or

"Are you saying 'boo' or 'boo-urns'?" - C.M. Burns, The Simpsons

Shock! Gasp! I am one of those Canadians using the term "boourns" incorrectly!
My world has been rocked. (In a small, shallow way.)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

symptoms and ponderings

Whew. I'm tired.
Here are a few symptoms of pregnancy I've totally been feeling lately:
- tired
- cankles (they're back baby! Okay, so not at the REALLY bad stage, but they are starting up again)
- I get REALLY full a lot faster
- I still can burp like a frat boy
- been feeling crampy - not like contractions or Braxton Hicks but exactly like period cramps - like I felt after my water broke with Noah. Crazy!
- Braxton Hicks contractions every now and again - they are more painful than I remember
- I grunt every time I bend over - it's brutal
- the pregnant waddle is in full force - at least I feel like I am waddling BIG TIME
- oh yes, did I mention I'm TIRED?!?!

Other than that and the lack of emotional and physical capacity I feel these days...I'm doing well. Honestly, though, all things considered I am doing well, I don't have much to complain about as I know MANY women who just hate being pregnant (hate the symptoms, that is) and have far worse symptoms (extreme heartburn, major physical difficulties, pre-term labour, etc.) so I'm still definitely counting my blessings.

To be honest, I remember feeling like I would always be pregnant. I feel that way again now. Like I will always feel this big and cumbersome. Like this baby will never actually get here. It's like the calm before the storm. I know introducing this fourth person to our family is going to change things in ways I can't imagine, but in a lot of ways I feel FAR more ready for this baby than I ever did with Noah. I am not scared of how my life is going to change. In terms of socially and "life phase"-wise my life has already changed. I am a Mom. I hang out with other Moms (I hang out with other wonderful people as well of course). I have to think about my child that I am leaving at home if I go out (ie. arrange all details and babysitter). Jamie and I are still trying to figure out how to have a date night - or just go on dates. Period. I am more than a Mom, but I am a Mom. Having this child will not change that.
I think my biggest concern right now is for Noah. How will this affect him? How will I split my time and energy between two little boys and one wonderful man? How will my heart possibly grow to develop love for a second child?
I know all these things will be answered in time...but they are the ones I think about the most - not the baby gear, maternity wear or decorated (or not - ha!) nursery.
I am excited to meet this little fella and get to know him, see what kind of temperament and personality he has. See if my hunch is right (that he will be darker than Noah - dark eyes and hair)...I'm excited for these things and as long as we can get our house/bedrooms set up in our new place, I'm fine if he decides to show up a little bit early. :)
Okay, enough ponderings...this preggo needs some sleep!
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