Conversations with my Kids – Walk Like an Egyptian Edition

Alex just came out of his room wrapped in a sheet.
‘Mom I’m an echipter’
‘A tree chipper?
‘No an Echipter’
‘A… Chipster?
‘No Mom. An Echipter’
At this point Hubs butts in ‘An Egyptian?’
Alex: ‘yes. Thank you. An echipter’

… Well… I’m glad they understand each other…. I need more coffee.

Love, hugs and more to come later

Potty Training – Second edition

I meant to write a post on this in the lead up days… We decided to attempt potty training Nick. We started yesterday morning. He had one accident yesterday, and one accident today! He woke up dry this morning and immediately went to his potty (with a bit of prompting)
I am soo excited to be down to 2 in diapers full time and 1 only at night!

We were going to try potty training Nick and Zoey at the same time, since they are both showing signs of being ready…. But, 2 at once seemed like a lot of pee to clean so we decided to focus on one at a time. In a week or so (or after T leaves, I did tell you all the T is coming with baby L to visit right? That’s another post, if I didn’t) anyways we are going to focus on Zoey in a couple weeks.

I am almost ready to call Nick’s potty training successful. He has been waiting for his bedtime pull up to poop in though. I think its time to acquire another copy of ‘Everyone Poops’ (the one we had for Alex got lost somewhere through our move) it really worked with Alex, and I’m optimistic Nick would find success with it as well!
*fingers crossed* for continued success!!

Love, hugs and more to come later!

Conversations with Alex – Where babies come from

Alex and I were talking about our family. We had just finished talking about how we have a Momma, a Daddy, 2 brothers and 2 sisters. Then we had this talk:
A: Oh no!
M: what’s wrong?
A: I have one brother and two sisters!
M: yes….
A: I need two brothers and two sisters, Mom you have to have another baby! Can we get another one from your tummy?
M: No, sorry bud, there’s no more babies in my tummy.
A: Let’s go to Walmart!
M: Why?
A: Because we can buy a small tiny baby and when you are sleeping he can climb in your mouth and go all the way down down down to your belly. And then you can eat and sleep and eat and sleep and eat and sleep and the baby will grow into a brother and then the Dr can take him out and then I can have two brothers and two sisters.
M: um… I’m not sure that’s quite how it works…
A: Well we can try!
M: um.. Well… Ill tell you what, next time we’re at Walmart if they are selling little brothers Ill think about it. But I don’t think they sell people at Walmart sweetie.
A: I’ll keep trying Mom.
M: okay bud.

And there you have it… The real truth of where babies come from.

Love, hugs and more to come later

Lessons from my kids

Today has been a rough day. Emma is teething and only happy when Momma is holding her, otherwise she screams. She is fighting her naps and is miserable. Zoey is also teething and having a jolly time irritating her brothers. Alex and Nick needed naps today and wouldn’t take them. They are easily instigated. I didn’t get enough sleep. I am short on patience and Hubs isn’t here.
So I was rocking Emma and finally got her to sleep. I tried to put her down, no sooner did I get her put down and settled, Zoey grabbed a toy from Nick, Nick screeched, knocked over Alex’s toy in his tantrum and Alex screamed in anger and decided to push Zoey. Who started crying. Which woke Emma up. Again.
I sighed. I hung my head almost in tears and muttered to myself ‘that’s it. I quit. I’m not cut out for this. I can’t do it. I’m done. There is a beach somewhere. With alcohol. Ill go there. Ill sleep. Ill embrace the quiet.’
Alex came over and said ‘but mom, we would miss you. Please don’t leave’
Me: I wouldn’t really leave baby. Momma’s just frustrated’
A: cause we woke Emma up again?
M: sort of, don’t worry about bud, Mom’s got this. Okay?’
A: okay Mom, I love you.
M: I love you too baby.

Then almost the exact same scenario played out. Only this time Alex hit Nick (I’m not sure why) and Nick kicked Zoey who bit him back. Again, all 4 were screaming and crying.
Me muttering: I’m so done. I quit.
Nick: mooooooooom oooowwwww
Me: yes I know. Zoey bit you, it hurts.
N: oooooooowwwwww
M: come here I’ll kiss it better
N: no
M: fine
Nick comes over, ‘mom, kiss me?’ I kiss him better, he says thanks and says ‘I love me mom’ (which is his way of saying I love you’ I tell him I love him too and he goes to play.
A few minutes later Emma is asleep again. I’m about to put her down, but Zoey has a doll in her chair. I figure Ill put her in the swing, doll there too. I know that the second I put her in her bed she’ll wake up. So I ask Zoey to move her doll. ‘Be seep’ (baby sleeping)
M: I know but I need to Emma down
Z: Ma seep?
M: yes, Emma is asleep
Z: night night Ma

I put Emma down, and the kids are still quiet. Soon Alex comes over to snuggle. While he’s in my lap he says ‘Mom… Don’t quit. We need you too much. Dad does it wrong’ right after he says this he hops down and goes to play with his brother and sister. Helping Nick build his tower and reminding Zoey ‘shh, Emma’s having a nap’

Oh my sweet boy. I would never quit. These kids teach me more everyday about love. And patience. And how the tough moments never last long.

Love, hugs and more to come later

I am either losing my mind or I am a genius…

Tonight Hubs and I put the 3 older kids to bed at 7 like we always do. (the three of them are currently sharing a room since we are in a two bedroom house and are locked into a lease, if you remember when we made our big move out to Manitoba we didn’t have much for options and took the first house we got, which came though mere days before we left New Brunswick. Thankfully, they are big bedrooms.) Most nights they lie in their beds, talk and play and are asleep by 730-800. I can deal with it. They aren’t too loud, I don’t need to go in there three hundred times. We are all happy. BUT. The last few nights… gah… they yell, they scream, they jump around, they fight, they dance… they in general just go crazy. Hubs and I take turns going in there… Starting with gentle reminders to lie in bed, go to sleep… then escalating to raising our voices and yelling. Which we are trying really hard not to do. And for the most part we are doing great with our quest to not yell. But bedtimes were getting absurd. So tonight I decided to do something different.

Tonight when they started getting absurd we tried the gentle reminders. I could see us both getting really frustrated by 730 sensing we were in for another long night. So I went into their room. I turned their light on. I said ‘it’s not bedtime anymore. You guys are obviously not going to go to bed like I asked. Please get up and go play with your toys.’

They looked at me like I lost my mind. So did Hubs. He whispered to me that I was either really smart, or really crazy. The kids weren’t sure what to think. ‘Let’s go’ I prompted and ushered them out to the living room where I pulled out some cars and started playing. They looked scared. I was trying not to laugh.

At 800 Alex said ‘Mom, I think it’s bedtime. It’s dark and the clock is pointing at the 8’ I replied ‘Yep. The clock says it’s bedtime. But Mom says it’s not’ ‘You mean we don’t get bedtime tonight?’ ‘Nope. You guys can stay up all through the night’ Him and Nick looked devastated.

At 815 I turned off all the lights except a lamp. I sat on the couch with a couple books and started reading. Zoey came over and snuggled up to me to listen. Soon Alex and Nick came over too. After a couple stories Nick asked if he could go read them in his bed. Alex looked afraid of my answer. I told them yes. They could each bring two books into their beds. I brought them back to bed and tucked them in (it was about 840) I heard from them once since then.

I don’t think 700 is going to work as a bedtime anymore. I am going to push them to 730 tomorrow and see what happens. Maybe I’ll even get lucky and they will start consistently sleeping later then 7am. Then I can really call myself a genius. Right?

Love, hugs and more to come later

Beating the Boredom without Breaking the Bank

The last few days have been really cold. I mean like -40 degrees Celsius with the windchill kind of cold. Too cold to have the kids outside playing. Which as a result leads to 3 kids who are going stir crazy and a Momma who is ready to lose her mind because she can’t get 3 minutes to drink her coffee. Or load the dishwasher. Or cook. Or pee. It means Alex, Nick and Zoey fight. Over everything. And hit. And push. And argue. And whine. I think you get the picture, it’s miserable.

Over the last few months I have become a little addicted to Pinterest. There are some AMAZING ideas on how to entertain kids! Oodles and oodles of ideas! And so many of them use things I have around the house. Like tape. And balloons. And string. And straws. It has been a life saver. There are far too many pages that I have been going to for ideas for me to link to exactly where I find my ideas, but this (and this, this and this) is the link to my board where I store them all! Feel free to take a look.

Here though, are a few of the things I did with the kids over the last couple days:


First up, we have our noisy balloons. I put perler beads into the balloons and blew them up. The beads bounced all over the place when the balloons moved and made tons of noise. I used beads, but I imagine you could put anything in them that you had around the house to make noise! The kids were entertained for a couple hours by these when I first made them and they were used on and off all day today as well. I would say it was a hit!


I am always on board for any activity that includes some learning. My kids love tape and they love to guess what I might be doing with it. (Usually I am making them a roadway/city/parking lot for their cars and trains) So I sat on the floor while they were being loud and started making some letters. We had fun singing our alphabet and guess which letters were missing (I didn’t tape them down in order and that added to the appeal of them guessing which one I was making) Alex also liked finding letters to spell some simple words!


Today the kids really wanted to play in the snow. Since we couldn’t go outside and play in the snow, we brought the snow into us. I also put some water into the muffin tins with some food coloring and let the kids paint in the snow. They had fun making roads, and snowmen, and painting pictures. At one point there were dinosaurs in the snow fighting the ‘ice age’ (a snowman). They had a great time playing in the snow and my floors were cleaned in the process! Double win!

Love, hugs and more to come later!

Accepting Blame

A local radio station posted this to Facebook yesterday with the caption that the Public Health Agency of Canada was investigating laundry pods because there were a large number of children that ate them and got sick. The radio station wanted opinions as to whether their listeners thought this was legitimately a product problem or a parenting problem.
Now I personally feel like this is a parenting problem, not a product problem. Laundry soap is a chemical. It should be kept out of reach of children. Just like the rest of the household cleaners, medications, etc. A lot of the comments on the post by the radio station were saying its the products fault for looking like candy. Or for not making the containers child proof.
Now, I do understand that accidents happen. Kids get into things. But why can’t we as parents take ownership? Why does it immediately have to become someone else’s fault?
I have made my own calls to the Poison Control Center on 2 occasions. The first I had an almost empty bottle of peroxide open on the bathroom counter while I was cleaning my ear piercing. I had the bathroom door open and had allowed Alex in the room. I thought I had put the bottle far enough back, but I turned my back to Alex to talk to Hubs for a minute and when I turned back Alex had the bottle and the front of his shirt was wet. I don’t know how much he ingested, and it was an accident, but it was MY fault the accident occurred. Not the makers of the peroxide I was using. The second time the boys both had chest colds and we were visiting my mom. I had bought some Baby Vicks Rub and I was storing it in my purse, on a shelf. Alex knew he wasn’t allowed to play in my purse. But he got it down, opened it, and handed the container to Nick in his playpen. It was all over Nick, his bed and the wall. I don’t know if he ingested any but I took ownership. I shouldn’t have assumed it was safe while it was still in reach. The over wasn’t baby proof but I didn’t think Alex could open it. Again, my fault. Not the fault of the company.
In Canada child walkers are banned. You can’t buy them, sell them, gift them or use them. Too many kids fell down the stairs while using them. I guess parents felt like they didn’t need to worry about safety if their child was in the walker?
I have storage bins that specify not to put children in them with the lid on it.
Some of these warning labels that companies use are getting absurd. It’s time to stop blaming companies. It’s time to step up and admit that we aren’t perfect flawless human beings. It’s time to admit that some of these accidents aren’t the fault of a company but are, in fact, Parenting Problems.

Love, hugs and more to come later

Figuring It Out

Every time I think I might finally have a handle on being a mom to 4 young kids the universe throws me a curve ball as if to remind me I am absolutely clueless.
A few weeks ago I enrolled Alex into school. At first he seemed to be doing great. He loved going, he was happy and there were no issues. His teacher was sweet and seemed to have an excellent handle on things.
Then one Thursday I went to pick Alex up and she greeted me with a comment along the lines of ‘oh my goodness, is it Friday yet! These kids are making me crazy!’ Now, I want to state that I can only imagine that dealing with 20 three-five year olds is stressful and chaotic and I’m sure Friday is exciting… But it seemed like such an unprofessional statement. Maybe if I knew her better I would find it more acceptable, maybe I’m over reacting, but it bothered me.
Then there was the day I showed up a few minutes early to pick Alex up. A group of about 10 students were gathered around the computer watching Youtube. Without supervision. This bothers me because while I think Youtube is an excellent site for educational videos and kids songs etc, I also feel like it should be used under supervision. It only takes one click of the mouse before those kids are watching something totally inappropriate.
Then was the day that broke my heart. I dropped Alex off like usual, then picked him up again at 330. When we got home we were talking about his day. He told me the teacher made him sit on the blue chair during circle time because he was crying. I asked him why he was crying and he told me he cried because I left. Wait. What? Since when?
The next day when I brought him to school I asked his teacher about his comment. She told me he cries a bit almost everyday. This had never been mentioned to me before. Every afternoon I ask how his afternoon was and she tells me he was happy and cooperative all day. Now she tells me he struggles for the first hour or so, out of a 2.5 hour program.
Alex hasn’t been to school in a week. The last day I brought him he cried and begged me not to leave him. I left the school crying. I cried all afternoon, my heart breaking for my little boy who was miserable in this setting. I cried for me, for not seeing how unhappy he truly was. I gave it a ton of thought. Do I keep forcing him to go? Or do I listen to his pleas and pull him from the program?
I finally decided to pull him. He’s three. He’s not ready to be away from his brother, sisters and I. Why force him before he’s ready. I have the opportunity to have him home with me and I’m taking it. In the last week my 3 year old has been himself again. And his only comments about school were ‘Mom, when you leave me at school I freak out. Miss A tells me not to but I miss you when you leave me. I like to stay home forever’ and ‘I have to go to school. Miss A said she’s going to cry if I stay home forever’
I don’t think I am going to enroll him back into the school I had him in for Nursery (pre k) some of my reasons are listed here, but most aren’t. But, that’s not a choice I’m making today! Right now the only choice I’m making is what to feed my babies for breakfast!

Love, hugs and more to come later

The Halloween Candy

I took the two boys out trick or treating for Halloween, but the girls stayed home with Daddy. Zoey was fevered on and off and Emma is just too little.
They made out like bandits and there was way more candy then the kids are going to eat.
Now I’m one of those ‘mean’ parents that moderates how much candy my kids get. I put the candy out of sight and out of reach. Or so I thought.
The other day Hubs and I were sitting in the living room watching TV. We had this conversation:
M: where did the kids go?
H: I think they are playing their bedroom.
M: oh. Ok. Its really quiet I think I’m going to go check on them
As I stood up the kids came running out of the kitchen yelling:
Alex: mom! We found the treats!!
Nick: mom! Treats!
Zoey: eats! Yum!
They not only FOUND the treats, they also managed to climb up and get them down.
Apparently my kids who can’t handle playing cooperatively lately work together really well when there is candy involved. Who knew.

Love, hugs and more to come later

W(h)ine and cheese

I wish this post was about the wine you pour into a chilled glass and sip and enjoy while your stresses slowly melt away. But this post is about the other kind of whine. There is cheese though. So that’s a bonus.

This morning I got up with the kids at 8. I was feeling pretty good. 8 is better then the usual 630!! We got up and I made them breakfast, got their apple juice, and turned on Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. That was an hour ago. They haven’t stopped whining since. ‘My waffle is too hot’ ‘Zoey’s touching me’ ‘I don’t want to go pee’ ‘my apple juice is cold’ ‘I want cheese and crackers’
Being sick of the incessant whining from all 3 of them, I gave in and gave them cheese and crackers. It worked. They were all eating quietly.
Until Zoey ran out of cheese on her plate. Then she quietly eased over to Nick and swiped a piece of cheese off his plate. HOLY EFFING MONKIES ITS WORLD WAR THREE. Over a piece of cheese. The tantrums!! Its insane!!!!!! Nick pushed Zoey, Zoey bit Nick. I sent them to their room. Biiig mistake… They share a room. Hahaha… That wasn’t a mommy win.
Now Nick is watching tv while sitting on the couch. And screaming his head off anytime Zoey is within 2 feet of him. Zoey, the wonderful child she is, thinks this funny and is purposefully inching closer and closer until he screams. After a morning full of whine, my night better be full of wine.

Love, hugs and more to come later