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:

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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!

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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!

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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!
Lynn

When kids don’t sleep

Lately I have been in bed by now. Sleeping. For over an hour. But instead my wonderfully cranky, teething toddler decided that he was going to boycott sleep today. Good times. We put all three kids to bed at 7. As usual. They go to bed at 7, I go to bed at 915. Everyone is happy (ish) at 6 am when we get up for the day. Tonight, Alex went to sleep within 10 minutes, as usual. Zoey was sleeping within 15 minutes, as usually. And Nick… Well Nick was still crying and fussing about 10 minutes ago when Hubs had enough and decided to load him into the van and drive around the block a few times to put him to sleep. 

I don’t know what is up with that kid, none of our usual tricks were working. Tylenol, cuddles, rocking chair, Momma and Daddy’s bed, milk… Nothing. Was. Working. I hope the van ride is working. I’m tired. 

What do you to help your children sleep when they are having a rough night? 

Love, hugs and more to come later!
Lynn

Night One: Sans Soother

Yesterday I cut all Nick’s soothers. (Pacifiers, binkys, whatever you want to call them) Hubs and I decided a little while back that it was time to wean him and I looked online to find some gentle approaches to weaning. 

The first thing we tried was changing his soother to a smaller soother then he was used to. Thinking about it now it was ridiculous. I spent money on new soothers in a hope to get him to stop taking one. Needless to say, it didn’t work. He took to the new one no problem. It was a little weird for him at first but he got the hang of it. 

We decided that the only way we were going to get it away from him was to actually be mean and take it. I didn’t want them to just disappear, I could see him tearing the house apart to try and find it and losing his mind over it. Which is where the decision to cut it came in. Nick wouldn’t be able to suck on them and we could explain to him that they were ‘broken’ and needed to go into the garbage. So, here’s what happened. 

I cut them, and put them on the table where he would find them. When he found them broken he was devastated. He walked around the house holding them. Saying ‘Oh no. Broken. Help me. Oh no.’ Alex decided he could fix them and the two of them disappeared into the playroom to fix them. After Alex declared them ‘broken too much to make better’ Nick brought them to me. I explained that they are broken and we should throw them in the garbage now. 

Alex was holding one of the soothers and Nick was holding the other two. Alex marched right over to the garbage and threw the one he had in. Turning to Nick, he told Nick to come throw his out too. So Nick did. Then they applauded. We cheered to Nick being a big boy. And Alex asked for him and Nick to have some pudding. So I let them. 

When it came to bedtime, I have to admit I was scared. But, Nick whined a little and when Hubs went up and talked to him about how they were broken and in the garbage and Nick was a big boy now he settled right down and went to sleep. 

He woke up four times last night asking for his soother. Each time we explained that they were in the garbage because they were broken and he was a big boy now and he went right back to sleep. 

It wasn’t anywhere near as bad as I thought it would be. I am so proud of my little boy. I hope it stays this easy on him and continues proving to Hubs and I that we made the right choice with taking them away now! 

Love, hugs and more to come later!
Lynn

Rice Ships and Ketchup Ocean

I wish I could say that this post is going to be about some great and creative cool meal idea I did with the kids, but it isn’t. It’s a quick snap shot into a very interested meal time at our house. I made Pork Chops in a creamy mushroom sauce and rice for supper tonight. Alex said he wasn’t hungry and wanted to draw at the table while we ate. Since he  has been a super crank today I allowed it just so he would stop whining and crying. This is the conversation that happened while we were eating. 

A: Mom, look I drawing
M: Yep. What are you drawing?
A: Gordon
M: Okay
A: Mom its really hard. You help me?
M: I’m eating bud. I can help you later. 
N: (pointing at the ketchup bottle) Please?
H: Can you say Ketchup?
N: (grins) Pleeeeeease
H: Keeeettttccchhhhuuuuuupppppp
N: please
H: Say Ketchup
N: mmmm Please?
M: Nick Nick, say Ketchup?
N: etchip 
*insert glare from hubs. ha ha* 
A: Can I have Kethups please?
H: Sure. Are you going to eat?
A: okay
*Hubs gives Alex some ketchup, Alex proceeds to use his hands and start mixing the rice into the ketchup*
M: Whatcha doing Alex?
A: Making pirate ships
M: with your rice?
A: yep I guess so
M: …
A: Look. Ketchup Ocean
M: Can you eat the pirate ship?
A: Okay. *eats a little bit* Oh no. 
H: What’s wrong?
A: I’m all sticky
N: please!
H: ketchup?
N: yea
H: can you say ketchup?
N: please!
A: I’m all sticky
M: I’ll wash your hands when you are done eating
H: ketchup?
A: Yes Please
N: Yea!
M: *laughing* Nick, can you say ketchup?
N: etchup

Never a dull moment in the Momma Needs Coffee house! 

Love, hugs and more to come later!
Lynn

Family time

I have been having a hard time coming up with words lately. I can come up with the topics I want to write about. The things going on around me. Things the kids do that I want to share. Things I see, do, experience. But then I start typing and I can’t think of the words to express what I am thinking and feeling. It’s absurd. I feel so… blah… But not in the ‘I’m in a depressed, not me’ kind of way. I just.. I don’t know. I think I am losing my mind.

This week has been all about family time with Hubs and the kids. After the last few weeks of me being in and out and preoccupied with other things, I decided to devote this week to them. I think I did pretty good. Monday we hung out in the house since it was rainy out and played trains. Tuesday we did some shopping and played trains some more. And blew bubbles in the living room before bed.  I made a point of taking the kids out for a walk on Wednesday. I was amazed with the boys. Nick walked about a half a KM and Alex walked the whole 2 KM’s with me. Without complaining. Yesterday we took the kids into Fredericton and walked around the mall, played in the play area with them. Bought them each a new puzzle for us to do together and bought scrabble for Hubs and I to play. Today we went to the park and played in the backyard. And, played trains. Of course.

Of course, my housework hasn’t been getting done. By the time the kids are in bed, I’m exhausted and just don’t feel like doing it. So there are toys everywhere. But oh well. Maybe I’ll do it tomorrow 😉 There is time for that. I have been enjoying my babies. I realized that they grow up far far far too fast. Zoey is 4 months old today. It feels like just yesterday Hubs and I decided to try for one more baby. Nick is 18 months as of a couple days ago. He is starting to talk more and more. And I started planning Alex’s third birthday today. /sigh/ (His birthday is December 29, but we are planning to have his party on November 30 before everyone is busy with Christmas)

Yesterday Alex was playing trains with Nick when him and I had this conversation:

A: Mom, where’s Henry?
M: huh?
A: I want Henry
M: *light bulb goes off, Henry is a train from Thomas, and not part of his collection* We don’t have Henry
A: Go store and buy him?
M: No. Maybe you can ask Santa for him for Christmas.
A: Go right now?
M: Um.. no… Santa is still sleeping. We’ll have to watch for him to come to the mall.

Then this conversation today:

M: *to hubs* I figure we can do a pirate theme for his birthday party and bbq Hot Dogs. I am only inviting a couple people.
A: Birthday Party! For Alex?
M: Yep. In a couple months.
A: With cake?
M: yep.. Cake, hot dogs, salad, balloons, presents…
A: SANTA
M: Um… no… Santa doesn’t bring you presents for your birthday
A: Oh. I want Henry.
M: Maybe someone will buy you him for your birthday.
A: No. Santa buy him.
M: Santa doesn’t buy toys… his elves make them.
A: Laughs

This child of mine. I can’t wait until Nick starts talking.. I’m sure it’ll only get more interesting. Right now, he only says a few words and not in sentence form. Although, he is pretty funny with some of the ways you can see him processing things. Like when he was trying to get between the table and the side of the chair (I have the table pressed against the side of the chair so there was more room on the other side of the table while I was going through clothes) It wasn’t working for him. So I said ‘Nick, you aren’t going to fit in there. There’s no room’ His reaction? Let’s just try to move the table so I can. When he moved the table (it’s not heavy) He gave me the most hilarious ‘I told you so’ look ever. How I wish I had a camera.

But that’s been my week. I am hoping to get some laundry and stuff done this weekend. But I have to be honest.. if the kids want to play, laundry can wait!

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! 

 

An Update!

It would appear that I am really really bad at keeping this updated while I am in Winnipeg! In my defense though, I am currently down with a cold and also have 2 toddlers with colds. Not my idea of a great time! Definitely makes me appreciate the fact that my mom is here to help me out!!

It’s hard to believe that we have already been out here for a month. The time is flying by! I am definitely missing the Hubs, but the boys are keeping me more then busy and I have enough people around for company (and when I really want someone to cuddle with at night, I have 2 little boys who love to sleep in my bed too!)

I find it insane that in about 2 months we are going to be welcoming our final addition to the family. It’s kind of bittersweet that we are going to be taking measures to prevent having another one. On one hand I am excited to grow and learn as a complete family and not be pregnant anymore… but on the other it’s kind of sad knowing this is the last time that I am going to hold my own newborn, and go through all those milestones that make us moms to happy and sad all at the same time.

Speaking of milestones, I cannot believe that Nick is almost walking! He is taking up to about 10 steps on his own and super excited by the praise he is getting! Hard to believe he is going to be a full year old in less then a week. I also cannot believe how much Alex is talking and how close he is to potty training. He is stubborn like his Momma, but his Momma has more experience at being stubborn and is slowly winning the fight!!

But this Momma is going to put her toddlers to bed and head there herself (after I watch the Jets finish annihilating the Leafs, of course!)

Love, hugs and more to come later! (I promise!)

Lynn