Monthly Archives: October 2015

Friday the Great

Ya, I”m trying out new titles for this.

Days Off

I had Wednesday off with my girl. It was the crazy busiest day, as we were prepping for a friend’s shower. But we also had lots of fun, including going to C’s swimming lesson. She’s my little fish: I’ve never seen her happier than when she’s in the water.

Dirt Dessert

Pudding? Whipped Cream? Oreo crumbs? Gummy Worms? I’m 6 years old when I see that. Delicious!

Wine

While I may still be nursing Miss C., we’re down to once a day, and if the last couple nights have been any indication, the balance between “doing it for her” and “doing it for me” is slowly shifting from the former to the latter. But it is nice to have a glass or two of wine after she’s gone to bed without having to measure it out, and look at the clock because you know what I remembered? I like wine. It’s some good stuff.

Snuggles

Little C hasn’t always been very affectionate. Until this week. We’ve been having some great morning snuggles. Some great hugs when I get home. Yes, there was the morning she didn’t want anything to do with me, but there were also days when it was obvious that I was the favourite.

Jets Games

I don’t know whether it’s just constantly seeing them has worn down my resistance, but I’m really liking watching Winnipeg Jets games this year. To the point where I was disappointed when Scott said he didn’t see the need to upgrade our cable to watch the next couple games. Don’t worry, I got over it.

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Poor or cheap

Our washing machine made it through most of the laundry the other week before dying. After bringing in a repairman who told us is wasn’t worth it to repair it, we bought a new set this past weekend.

Yes, a set. We had the repairman take a look at the dryer and while it was mechanically in good condition, the same could be said for our washing machine. Essentially, the computer in the washer died, and there is no way to anticipate that kind of malfunction. It could be in 5 days, it could be in 5 years. Not being particularly daring, we decided not to take the gamble.

But it hurt.

All in all, we were lucky. We were without laundry facilities for a total of 9 1/2 days. With the exception of Charlotte’s pajamas (which took a trip to Nana & Grandpa Daycare to get the ultimate cleaning experience), we didn’t really feel too much of a crunch. There weren’t any trips to the laundromat, shopping sprees at the underwear store, or any handwashing in the sink. As I mentioned at the end of last week, I’d already picked out my replacements before shopping, so if work hadn’t got in the way, we could have been back to washing sooner.

But as I said, it hurt.

We lucked into a good sale, but, at the end of the day, it was a large pot of cash that we handed over. While I feel I have to count myself as lucky to be in a position to hand over that potful of cash, there is no luck to it. There is planning and foresight. Every month, we set aside money to put towards “household repairs”. Most of the time, it just sits there. But when we need it, I’m glad that it’s there.

We haven’t always had that happen. There was the time that Scott had just finished school and wasn’t sure if his internship was going to turn into a permanent job, and both of our cars had died. There was the time we moved back to our home province as a newly wed couple without any job prospects and had to have our parents co-sign our apartment lease. In my mind, that’s still where we were financially. We’re still wincing every time we pull out a debit card. We’re still stressing out every time we go a little over grocery budget. We’re still putting off purchases because “what if!?!?”

We are no where near poor. And yet we often find ourselves talking and acting as if we are. Some may say we’re financially conservative. Others say cautious. I prefer to say “financial responsible.” But at the end of the day I know sometimes, I’m just being cheap.

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Magic and Heartache

Yesterday, my daughter snuggled with me. Good, hard, long snuggles. The kind of snuggles you always imagine when you think about motherhood. Then, she had a rough time napping, so she slept on me. It was another hour of snuggles. The afternoon was spent running errands together. There were laughs. There were high fives. That evening, exhausted from the day, she fell asleep in my arms before I could get through her bedtime story. 

Motherhood felt magic as I went to bed. 

This morning her hug wasn’t that tight when I picked her out of the crib. There were no silly faces made at the breakfast table. And when I went to give her a goodbye hug and kiss, she pushed me away and screamed. 

It’s been 405 days that I’ve been a mother. Yes, by now I know that there are good days and there are bad days. And I know that if I want the good days to still feel like magic, the bad days will still feel like heartache. 

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Things I’m Loving

Democracy

We had an election this week. My preferred party won, but I am also thankful that (at least from my newsfeed and social media) there is a general peace and acceptance. Yes, lots of jokes (having been born while his father was prime minister, our prime-minister-delegate, Justin Trudeau, has grown up in the spotlight and has not been immune to the occasional foible). 

The Internet

Our washer died this last weekend. Fried is probably a better term since it was a motherboard malfunction. Less than 24 hours after the death knell tolled, I had researched, compared and priced a replacement without sacrificing work, play or sleep. Now we can head out Saturday morning, negotiate a better deal (yes, Scott, I will embarrass you by haggling!) and be home hopefully before lunch! 

Snicker doodles

We had a birthday in our office this week, and I needed a quick and easy recipe to whip up amidst the washer research. Snicker doodles are easy-peasy, always turn out perfectly and never fail to please. 

 Eight Hours of Sleep

We’ve had a good run of good solid nights lately. I know saying it jinxes it, but not saying it jinxes it too. I can’t say I feel any more ready to greet the dawn than before but my coffee intake has dropped off significantly in the last week, and considering I don’t like coffee and what it does to me, that is a welcome change. 

Excuses to wear a hoodie and jeans to work

Yes I already blogged about flouting the dress code in the name of “self care” (which is a phrase I loathe), but today I’m in jeans and a hoodie and it’s completely work sanctioned. It’s my slow time so I’m cleaning our storage space. 

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Keeping it casualĀ 

I always said that I wasn’t going to be one of those moms who took the dress code and interpreted it in the most casual way. 

I didn’t want to feel like I’d given up on myself as a person separate from my kids. 

I didn’t want to be able to blame lack of sleep. 

But today I’m barely meeting the minimum levels of professional. I’m in black jeans, flat boots and a sweater. 

I had a whole 8 hours and 15 minutes of sleep last night. And I spent a good 10 minutes lying in bed trying to think of what I wanted to wear. 

And the answer was “my pajamas”. 

It’s not because I wanted to have a lazy day with my daughter. Sure, that would have been better than going to work. 

I just wanted a day for me. 

On the bus this morning, I saw a mom who epitomizes what I have always been afraid I’d become. She wore white runners. Jeans that were too short. A hoodie. And her hair was messily piled into a claw. 

But this morning I got it. You can give it your all at work. You can give it your all with your kids. And once they go to bed, if you have any energy left you have to give it your all tidying up and preparing for the next day. 

You can only do that for so long before the voice in your head cries “but what about me?” And usually when you hear it, you have no time to do anything significant. And you promise yourself that one day, soon, you’ll put the kid to bed and clean the bathroom. Then you’ll pour yourself a glass of wine and fill a bubble bath. 

But until then you put on the boots that don’t make your knees hurt. And the pants with the waistband that doesn’t dig. And the sweater that feels like a blanket. And hope that is enough to quiet the voice in your head. 

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Our Weekend

It’s amazing how your definition of a good weekend changes as you age and move through the various life steps.

It used to be a good weekend included going to bed late, sleeping in late, having some kind of adventure one day, and doing nothing the other day.

That doesn’t always resemble my weekends for the last year. Yes, we’ve had some massively lame weekends in the last 52+ weeks. But we’ve also had some great weekends in the last 52+ weeks.

Take this weekend. The latest I went to bed was 10:45. The latest I got up was 7:15. I spent Saturday morning cleaning the house and Saturday afternoon raking the lawn. My evening was spent at my parents’, doing the laundry that was left AND caused by the washing machine breaking down.

We also played in the leaves, ordered pizza, went to a petting zoo, got lost in a corn maze and practiced our airport hugs (not that we’re flying anywhere, it’s just the only way I can convince C to give me hugs!).

The best part was being able to go to bed on Sunday night knowing the laundry was done. The house wasn’t a complete disaster, and we made lots of great memories.

And that’s what makes the weekend a success.

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Things I’m Loving #16

Oh my goodness this week flew by! If you have asked me Monday night, I would have figured that the week would creep by.

Impromptu dates

While my parents get to look after C all week while I’m at work, Scott’s parents don’t get nearly enough time with her, living 2-3 hours away. When we arrived at their place for Thanksgiving, they practically pushed us out the door the minute we arrived for some quality time with their grandchild. We barely paused before sprinted to the car. Plus it was nice enough to have a few drinks on a patio.

Smooth Car Rides

A couple weeks ago, we drove to a family gathering with my parents. C barely slept in the car, which was unexpected. Fortunately, it was just circumstantial (there were people she had to entertain!) but driving to Scott’s parents this weekend guaranteed great car naps. Boredom for the win!


This guy

We’ve been having some weeks when it feels like everything is coming apart at the seams. He’s held my hand as I’ve bawled my eyes out at the thought of going to work, even though he gets roughly the same amount of time with her as I do and has the difficult task of having to take her at “daycare”. He’s made supper and done dishes on the days I come home exhausted, even though his work day has been just as, if not more, tiring. And he gets up with C in the middle of the night even if he’s stayed up late getting some extra work done. And he never complains.


Finishing the basement bathroom

18 months, a dozen people and countless delays after the first sledgehammer hit wallboard, we are done the basement bathroom. There are minor things left to do outside (a bit of trim, a bit of paint and a couple shelves) but we have a wonderful new bathroom. I’m super pleased with how it came together, even if Scott did admit his folly of taking on a project of this scale at such a transitionary time in our life.

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Voting

C is slowly adjusting her bedtime to her earlier wake time, and as a result, we’re getting less and less evenings with her. We’re learning it’s about prioritizing. It’s ok to make a mess having fun rather than clean it up. It’s ok to spend the evening throwing socks up in the air, pulling shirts out of drawers, and wearing pants on our head instead of putting away laundry. And so we decided it’s ok to vote at the advanced poles on a (windy but) lazy Thanksgiving Monday rather than waiting a week to rush home from work and rush through supper in order to narrowly make it to the polls on Election day.

Election

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Becoming Thankful

A year ago, I wasn’t thankful for my little turkey. At barely 4 weeks old, she was still a mystery who demanded more of me than I knew I possessed. I was still begging Scott to “just take her back” and feeling terribly guilty that I couldn’t find joy in sniffing her head, holding her close or being her mom. 

A year ago, I was going through the motions of being thankful for my little girl, going through one of the hardest times in my life, completely unsure of whether I would come out of the dark tunnel I felt stuck in. 

Oh, truly what a difference a year makes. 

As I sit at the breakfast table, watching her put each piece of pineapple in her mouth, make her “sour face”, stick her finger in her milk and use it to finger paint on the table, I am overwhelmed with thankfulness. 

I’m thankful for her mischievous, curious and independent mind. I’m thankful for her wrinkled nose, her gravelly laugh and her toothy grin. I’m thankful for her elephant sounds, her love of peek-a-boo, and her ability to constantly be on the move. I’m thankful for her slobbery kisses, her snug little hugs and her very rare but oh so precious cries of “Mama”. 

It’s still hard at times. I worry about what struggles she’ll have as a teenager. I worry that she’s not getting enough calcium since she refuses to drink milk. I worry that those first few weeks when I felt so resentful and so guilty over being resentful are the reason that she is, beyond all doubt, a daddy’s girl. 

But her shriek of excitement over a song out of her teapot, the way her eyes light up when she sees a picture of a panda, and her outstretched finger accompanying her “whassat?” help to silence the worry, the doubt, the guilt. 

And in their place, there are overwhelming amounts of thankfulness. 

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Things I’m Loving Friday #15

It turns out that taking a Friday off makes leaving little C THAT much harder on Monday. But let’s look at the bright size.

Car seat to crib transfers

C falls asleep a couple times in the car during our adventures last Friday, and while I’m used to her being in her infant seat, which I could bring into the house and take her out of it right by the crib, we’re getting the hang of taking her out of the convertible carseat in the garage and getting her into her crib with little or no fuss.

The Mindy Project

We live in a hulu-less country, but one of our tv channels puts The Mindy Project on their website the day after its Hulu debut (it will also air on their tv channel in November). It means I see the best lines from the show on Twitter before I can watch the show, but it’s the best show to watch on those days when the bus is too slow, and I need a distraction to ignore how long its taking to get home.

Being back at the gym

I don’t know whether it was seeing my gym buddies again (and the “you don’t even look like you had a baby!” because, seriously, sometimes I need people stroking my ego), or the ability to actually complete a full (albeit short) work out without someone climbing up your leg, crying, or putting sticks in their mouth, but the highlight of my week was the gym. My muscles don’t agree. Hence the next item

Stretching

Post-pregnancy workouts were awesome because while most people still have all those hormones in their system that make their joints all loosy-goosey, it meant that my joints finally didn’t hate me. But somewhere between 10 and 13 months postpartum, those hormones left my system and between the IT band being tight, and my piriformis feeling like I have a knife jabbing into my butt, if I’m not stretching and foam rolling after the gym, I’m in agony. Heck, even when I have stretched after the gym, the next day I’m in agony until I can stretch again (and let me tell you the downfall to being back at work: people think you’re strange when you lie on the floor behind your desk and pull your knee up to your chest).

The idea of yoga

I’m needing some zen in my life. I haven’t found the time to do yoga yet, but C’s bedtime is creeping earlier and while that means less time with her, it also means less time fighting with her to go to bed, so I’m starting to get some “me” time at the end of the day. I’m hoping to keep this idea of yoga in my head long enough to start a program I’ll like. I’ve heard good things about Yoga with Adrienne’s 30 days of yoga. Any recommendations?

And apparently that’s 5! For all you Canadians out there, have a great Thanksgiving!

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Currently: In October

Can you believe we’re in October? Wasn’t it just May yesterday? Thanks to Anne and Jenna for another month of Currently, where I am…

Eating: pumpkin and other squashes. In the last week, I’ve made quinoa squash salad, squash soup, pumpkin spice cupcakes, eaten pumpkin pie and drank a pumpkin spice latte. ‘Tis the season!

Exploring: corn mazes. I’d love to take C but it’s hard to coordinate her sleep schedule and our weekend plans. I fear I may have to wait until next year, but she is just so interested in animals these days, I’m hoping I can find out that is open decent hours AND has some farm animals.

Wearing: skirts, tights and boots. I haven’t put my sedentary desk jockey weight back on yet, so I have few pants that fit. Skirts are more forgiving of weight fluctuations and look classically fall with tights and boots.

Admiring: moms with part-time jobs. I love being at work. And I love being at home. In a perfect world, I’d convince my boss to let me work 3 days a week, but I know it’s not going to happen.

Collecting: to do lists. Between cleaning up the yard for fall and losing daytime hours to run errands, I’m finding it hard to keep on top of everything. I got home from grocery shopping at 9:30 last night. Some nights, I’m already asleep by that point.

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