Christmas in July

On Saturday the kids, hubs and I went out to where my parents camp to celebrate Christmas in July.

The way it works is:

people decorate their campsites, for most people this means they put out a blow up santa, or hang some garland, but my parents tend to go all out:

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There is a horse drawn sleigh ride (the sleigh is on wheels since there is no snow for the sleigh. But they still call it a sleigh ride)

There is a Santa Claus parade. This consists of Santa being pulled in the ‘sleigh’ while children ride their decorated bikes behind him and some parents push their strollers. (Overall a dusty mess since the roads aren’t paved and that many bikes going through does more than it’s part stirring up the dust) We sat this out as I wasn’t in the mood to cough and gag while walking behind a bunch of bikes and then fighting for a seat.

After the parade everyone gathers at the stage where Santa passes out presents. (These are bought and wrapped by the parents, dropped off at a specified place and then delivered to the stage during the parade.) My mom bought my kids their gifts from Santa. Since it is JULY she didn’t go all out. She bought the boys each a truck and got Zoey a stuffed pink hamster. Someone bought their kid a bike. Yep that’s right, Santa at the campground brought her a bike. Alex noticed the bike (of course) and said ‘Look Momma, Santa brought a bike! Bike for Alex?’ in my head I replied with ‘nope, sorry kid Santa doesn’t love you that much’ But out loud, since I didn’t want to dash my two year olds hopes and dreams, I said ‘I don’t think that bike is for you bud, it’s too big and you have a Thomas bike already!’ Crisis averted.

I was a little worried for when Santa called the kids names. Alex has been TERRIFIED of Santa every single time I have ever tried to bring him to see him. But I figured we would give it a go anyways. It was successful! There were no tears from anyone! Yay!

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We all had a great time, and after the kids got their presents from Santa we went back to Mom and Dad’s site and enjoyed a delicious BBQ before heading back to the city. Since the kids all have colds, I wasn’t on board for camping with my parents for the night. After we got the kids home and in bed, they slept. All night. Zoey woke up at midnight and 5 am for bottles, then they all slept until 7 am. Except me. I slept until after 9.  (Although I use the term sleep loosely since I had 2 little boys jumping on me intermittently)

Merry Christmas in July!

Love, hugs and more to come later!

Lynn

The Orange Rhino ~ July 21-27

I mentioned to my husband and my brothers that I was starting this challenge and they were shocked that I would be doing it. They all told me that I rarely ever snap at the kids, and they think I do a pretty good job at keeping my cool even when they are being little monsters (I say this with love) My brother later told me that my explanation was pretty awesome so I decided that I was going to share (an almost verbatim) account of what I said ‘I know I don’t yell much. And it takes a lot for me to snap at the kids. But, even if I only snap once a day, once a week , or once a month am I being fair to them? Why am I snapping? Is it legitimately something they are doing? Or is it because I am in a b*tch mood? And if it’s only because I am in a b*tch mood doesn’t that make it even worse? I don’t want my kids to feel afraid to come talk to me about anything because they aren’t sure if I am going to snap. I want to foster good communication with them, I want them to trust that they can talk to me. And right now I feel that if I can snap less and make myself seem more welcoming to them and their ideas/opinions (even if I am getting annoyed because they are repeating the same thing over and over and over) I can achieve that. Maybe I don’t snap a lot, but how much is too much before they stop wanting to talk to me about things that matter?’

I seen this a few months ago, and I think it explains how I feel better then I can:

listen

Maybe me snapping at them when I get frustrated won’t affect our relationship… but then, maybe it will. Here is how my week went, I wrote an entry for each day at the end of each day before bed;

Sunday July 21 – Today was my first day not yelling/snapping/raising my voice. I wish I could say that we had a great day and that I was successful… but I would be lying. And that isn’t going to accomplish anything. This morning I was all gung ho on the whole challenge, but thanks to lack of sleep (meaning next to no patience with anything) I was a snappy bitch. I was able to bite my tongue when it came to the kids, until Alex continually put his feet on the table at supper time and wouldn’t stop regardless of how many times and ways I asked him too. Then the rest of the day was downhill. I guess once I snapped, I couldn’t stop myself. Tomorrow is another day though. /sigh/

Monday July 22 –  Today was a better day than yesterday. Not perfect by any means. My count still hasn’t started. I snapped at the kids a couple times today, but the good news is I got a good nap in and the afternoon was better than the morning. I am going to keep working on a way to stop myself from snapping. Being tired is not a good  reason to snap at them. Not to mention it’s not fair to them. Another day of feeling guilty for not being as successful as I would like to be. /sigh/ Again, though, tomorrow is another day. Since today was better than yesterday, I’m going to do even better tomorrow! Eventually I’ll get this figured out and the count will start! I decided that when I hit 7 days without snapping/yelling I am going to have cake with the kids!

Tuesday July 23-  I am so so so so so so so excited to say that today finally counts as day 1!!!!!!! I made it through the whole day without snapping, yelling, raising my voice (except when Alex was going to run out into the street when we went for a walk at the park and I needed to get his attention so he would stop running towards it and come back and hold the stroller, but that’s okay yelling, and when he came back I stopped using my loud voice and explained why he needed to stay close) I am so proud of myself for catching myself before I snapped at all, even though I only got 4 hours of sleep last night. It’s an amazing feeling and I can’t wait to hit day 2 tomorrow!

Wednesday July 24-  Day Two!! What an amazing feeling. Who would’ve thought that going two days without snapping at the kids (and my husband) would make me feel so amazing! Another thing that I noticed today was that the boys are starting to listen to me better. I find that I am repeating myself less. I have started approaching how I talk to them a little bit differently, and it’s paying off. What an amazing feeling!

Thursday July 25- Back to zero… I only snapped once, but it was enough that it made me feel bad. Although when I snapped at the boys for fighting, they got the message pretty quick and cut it out, and didn’t fight anymore for the rest of the day. I see that as a plus, even if I have to start counting again. 

Friday July 26– Day 1! Again. I did snap today, but it was at a perfect stranger and she deserved it. No one is going to call my kids brats and not have me say anything about it. We took the kids to a baseball game, where, as you would expect they were very excited and antsy. The woman in front of us told me that my kids were brats and they had no place at a baseball game. My response was very rude and I am not going to post it here.

Saturday July 27– We are back at Day 2! Today we celebrated Christmas in July, and while it was amazingly stressful for me, I managed to keep my cool with the kids and not snap. (Even when Alex was throwing sand at people and driving me crazy!) Go me!

This week wasn’t perfect. But I think I did pretty good considering that it was my first week trying to change what has become a bad habit. Habits are hard to break! Tomorrow marks the beginning of a new week and my goal is to do better than this week. My kids deserve this!

Love, hugs and more to come later!

Lynn

My Second Liebster Award!

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Oh my gosh! I feel so lucky to have been nominated a second time for a Liebster award! This time around I am not going to follow all the rules though. Seeing as I was nominated for this one not too long ago, all of my nominees will be the same people. (I haven’t been too active in searching up new blogs to follow this past week) So first off I am going to send out a huge, huge thank you to Winding Road for the nomination.

I will also answer her 11 questions:

  1. What book are you currently reading? Any good? I am actually not reading anything right now. I just finished rereading the twilight  books (which I really enjoy) And I have been focusing on finishing up a Crocheting project for a friends baby shower. 
  2. What is your favorite chore? Obviously none are fun, but there is always that one that gives great satisfaction. My favorite chore is probably sweeping and mopping. It is quick and easy and yields the most results. (All of a sudden there are no crumbs or dried juice on my floors!)
  3. What song would be the soundtrack to your life? God Bless the Canadian Housewife by SheDaisy. 
  4. What is the first thing you do after you put your child(ren) to bed at night? Breath a sigh of relief 😛 In all actuality, I tidy up the house then I sit down at the computer for a little while before I go to bed too. 
  5. What is your sign and do you think it fits you? I am a Gemini and it is definitely me. 
  6. What is your favorite ice cream flavor? I’m not a big ice cream person. (Being lactose intolerant, it’s self explanatory  but when I do eat ice cream I tend to go for vanilla or chocolate. Or (as when I was pregnant with Zoey, Cotton Candy!) 
  7. Have you ever re-gifted a present and what was it? Ha ha yes. Yes I have. It was a really ugly picture my mil gave me. A friend was  over and expressed her love of it, so I gave it to her saying that I had another one I really wanted to hang instead
  8. Can you hula hoop? I could before I had kids. I can’t say that I have tried recently. 
  9. Describe your last dream hmm. I don’t remember dreaming lately. 
  10. What was your favorite thing to play as a kid? The ground is Lava (you know, when you jump from furniture to furniture without touching the floor) 
  11. Have you ever milked a cow? no I can’t say that I have. 

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That is going to conclude this edition of the award. Simply because (as I said) I don’t have anyone new to nominate, and because I can’t think of 11 random things about me right now! Thanks again to Winding Road for the nomination! 🙂

Love, hugs and more to come later!
Lynn

The Meaning of Being Supportive

With World Breastfeeding Week coming up, I have seen more and more on the internet in regards to feeding babies. I have seen two sides. I have seen the side that screams ‘Breast is best! If you don’t feed your baby breastmilk you are doing them a disservice’ Thankfully, those people seem to be less and less common. The other side I see is the side that says ‘Oh you feed your baby breastmilk? Cool. Oh hey, you feed you baby formula? Cool. You combo feed? Cool again.’

Normally I don’t pay too much attention to any of this stuff.  I see it, I let it go. I have been judged for how I feed the kids, but I let it go. Well, seeing it all over the internet/facebook/the news, it has been on my mind a little more.

Yesterday I was out with the kids. We took them to the mall. In the mall there is this cute little play place for the kids to play. Zoey was due for a feeding, so I figured the boys could play and hubs and I could sit on a bench and feed Zoey while we watch them. So I send the boys off to play, and sit down. A few feet to my left is a woman who apparently had the same thought as me. She sent her older child to go play while she breastfed her baby. Seeing her breastfeed bugged me a little bit. Not in the ‘ew that’s disgusting kind of way’ I don’t think breastfeeding is gross in any way, but in the way that I was about to whip out a bottle of water and some powder to mix up some formula for my baby. I was worried she was going to judge me. 

That way of thinking is not like me at all. I am normally the one daring people to judge me. I am normally the one willing to stand up for myself and others. But I was honestly fearful of what this woman that I had never met was going to think about me giving my baby formula. But Zoey was getting fussy so I had no choice but to mix her formula and give her her bottle. I couldn’t make the kids leave the play area. That wouldn’t be fair. Deep breath.

So I pulled out the stuff I needed to make her a bottle. And I prepped it. All while being super careful to avoid eye contact with breastfeeding Momma. Then I picked Zoey up and started feeding her, looking only at her and the boys. Still refusing to make eye contact. Then I hear a voice. ‘I love her headband. Did you make it?’ What?!? Breastfeeding Momma is making conversation with me.. well I can’t be rude… So I answered that I had indeed made it and we talked about crocheting and the different projects each of us had done. Then we talked about our kids. And you know what? It wasn’t awkward. Not even a little bit. It was perfectly fine. Neither of us cared that we were doing things differently. And that ladies and gents, is what being supportive is all about.

i supprtyou

This picture was uploaded onto the End the Mommy Wars group on Facebook by Annie Vorys and I think it is perfect!

Love, hugs and more to come later

Lynn

In the Glove Box

My husband in one in a million. I am not saying this in the ‘my husband is so amazing, I am so lucky to have him’ kind of way. Even though all those things are true. My husband is one in a million in the way that I am pretty sure there is no one out there who is quite as… talented… as him.

Today I decided that I was going to go through all the papers in the glove box while we were waiting for my brother to get off work. We have only had the van for about 4 months and I was surprised at the amount of stuff in there. (I have a habit of throwing receipts, toys, and other miscellaneous crap in there.) While going through it I found an envelope with my husbands name on it. So I opened it to see what was inside. (Yea yea we can get into the whole privacy thing later) Inside was a cheque. For $300. WTF. I have been pinching pennies for the last week so we can afford our trip back east, and there has been $300 SITTING IN THE VAN. THIS WHOLE TIME. 

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As you may recall, back in Feb/Mar the boys and I came out to Winnipeg to spend some time with my family. Hubs stayed back in NB and while we were gone upgraded the car to a minivan. 

Well… when he traded in the car, the loan date landed 2 days after our car payment. The loan covered that car payment so the dealership needed to reimburse him the payment. (Otherwise they were charging him twice blah blah blah) Turns out that instead of putting the cheque in the bank (the way most people might have) my awesome husband threw it in the glove box and forgot about it. I have never laughed so hard.

All of a sudden the change I find in the couch doesn’t seem so exciting. Where do you tend to find money? What’s the most amount you have ever found somewhere?

Love, hugs and more to come later

Lynn

 

Alex’s Monologue

Today when my brother got home from work he decided to be an awesome uncle and bring the boys home a box of 40 Timbits. 

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The monologue that ensued was too funny not to share. 

‘Oh Elmo brought TimBits. Alex likes TimBits. Alex get off the couch. Alex open the box. Alex wants a chocolate one. Thank you Elmo. Alex likes TimBits. Bite. Mmm. Yummy. You want one Mom. No, Mom no have one. Yucky for Momma. Alex eat them. Alex have a white one. Elmo TimBit? Nooo. Not Elmo TimBit. Alex TimBit. Alex share TimBit with Nick. Oh Nick sleeping. No TimBit Nick. Alex’s TimBits. Zoey TimBit? *laughs* No Zoey, Zoey baby.’ 

This went on for a little while. There wasn’t much room for any of us to insert anything into his monologue. After eating about 3 TimBits, Alex decided he had enough and went back to playing with his dinosaurs. Now he is talking to them. Telling them that they have to ‘go to the other side and find another friend’ I think it means he is going to have to go through the toy box to find the other dinosaur, but who knows with this kid! 

(My brother’s name isn’t actually Elmo, it’s a nickname he got when he was working with my dad and there was more than person with his name. Since he was called Elmo at work, it became his name at home too and kind of stuck even though he is no longer working with my dad.) 

 

Love, hugs and more to come later!

Lynn

 

A Poem to End the Mommy Wars

I seen this poem on Huffington Post and I loved it so much that I wanted to share it here. I didn’t write it, and none of the credit for it is mine. It was written by Kim Simon, and you can see the original post here.

 

It’s 10 p.m. in my house, and the kids are both asleep.
The tiny one is swaddled, and finally breathing deep.
My 4-year-old is tucked in tight, his blanket on his head.
I’m typing away by the glow of the screen,
though my body is pleading for bed.
You see it’s almost midnight, and that’s when the games begin.
My baby wakes up starving to death, and smiles his gummy grin.
I whip out my boob before he can scream, and he curls up on to my chest.
I close my eyes and start to drift…
I rarely remember the rest.
But one thing’s for sure in the dead of the night, when I’m nursing by the light of my phone.
I stare out the window and I imagine you’re there,
and I know that I’m never alone.
So this is your personal invite, to the party that I throw in my head.
It’s nice to think that there’s mamas like me, and that no one is comfy in bed.
See, when my baby spits up and it lands in my bra, I know that yours just did the same.
You might be in Utah or Kalamazoo, and I’ll never discover your name.
But you’re out there like me, with your babe in your arms,
and you pray that he won’t make a sound.
When you get up to transfer him back to the crib,
and his binkie falls onto the ground.
His wail fills the air, and you let out a curse,
yet Daddy still snores like a train.
Moms can get by on just three hours sleep,
but The Daddy will always complain.
There are millions of mamas like me and like you,
who are doing the night-feeding dance.
Every three hours we cuddle our babes,
even as they blow-out their pants.
There’s a dance that we do, all the mamas and I,
a dance that’s known only to us.
It’s a sway to the left and a bounce to the right,
when the baby is starting to fuss.
It’s a pace down the hall and a rock in the chair,
a song whispered ever so slow.
We share the same rituals and bedtime routines,
so I think that you already know…
That it really won’t matter if you bottle it up
or if milk sprays right out of your chest.
We’re all feeding babies with love in our hearts,
while praying for a little more rest.
So pull out your boobies or measure your scoops,
Relax in your comfiest chair.
When you’re fed up and flustered or just tired and mad,
look outside and you’ll know that we’re there.
You can find us on Facebook when we comment on posts,
we put pictures on IG and Twitter.
When the baby’s still up and won’t settle back down,
we’ve been known to search Etsy for “glitter.”
The books like to say that the magic will come
at 6 months or 9 months for most.
But until then, we’ll search for tired mommies like us,
who leave comments on Huffington Post.
There’s strength in our numbers,
the Moms of The Night…
We’re weary, we’re hungry, we’re up ’till it’s light.
We’re hardcore, we’re shopping, we’re living the dream.
We’re slipping, we’re fading, we’re ready to scream.
We’re drowning in onesies and burp rags and toys.
We’re loving the heck out of our girls and boys.
But mamas get tired and pushed to the brink,
we leave laundry unfolded and dishes in the sink.
So cut us some slack if we still lose our shit,
we’re warriors, we’re troopers, and we’ve vowed not to quit.
This feeding thing is hard though we’re doing it well.
With nipple shields, pumps, and some lanolin gel.
We use formula, breastmilk, bottles and pads.
We’ll do anything possible to nourish our lads.
We’re the same in the long run, no fighting allowed.
We’re all doing our best, we deserve to feel proud.
Now it’s almost that time when my oldest wakes up.
He needs water, a hug, “No, that’s not the right cup!”
And as soon as he’s snuggled right back in his bed,
the baby wakes up ’cause he needs to be fed.
So I’m off to the trenches but I’ll see you real soon,
Remember the mamas all share the same moon.
So swaddle your babies and then raise your glasses,
let’s cheers to the motherhood kicking our asses.

 

I hope you enjoyed the poem!