18 December 2008

And the babyproofing continues.


This is the sight I walked into when grabbing Nicky out of his crib after his morning nap. And yes, my child was still in his pajama's at 11. For that matter, so am I :) He was a heartbeat away from pulling himself into a standing position and he had the hugest grin on his face when I walked in. Proof that he does indeed smile occasionally for the camera:


You better believe that the crib is being dropped before he gets put in there again. Most likely once I hit publish, actually. On the one hand, it's bittersweet that he's getting so big, but then I realise how nice it is that he's not waking up crying all the time now. He actually plays in his crib now (did you see how he was hugging his aquarium? That thing goes on and off all the time). I'm just waiting for him to figure out how to pull himself up on the coffee table...once that happens, I'll have to find another 'safe zone' for all the random stuff that's sitting on it.

14 December 2008


One of the blogs I keep up with, Steece's Pieces, had a post that tagged everyone. Yay!! By the way, if you get a chance you should really go and check her out, what an amazing person! She's got 4 little one's, quads, who are a year and a half old. She's chronicled her journey from shortly before she found out she was expecting, all the way through and has such a positive spirit. Now, I'm a huge fan of those TLC shows, you know the ones, Jon and Kate plus 8, 18 + Counting (or are they up to 19 now?) but the difference between those shows and Suzanne's story is that 4 seems just slightly more realistic than 8, or pumping out child after child after child after child. You get the feeling that, oh crap, that could really happen. From what I understand, fertility drugs were a contributing factor, but still 2 of her quads are identical twins so she still woulda had multiples!

Anyway, to move on from the praise, here are the rules:

1) Choose the 4th folder where you store your pictures on your computer
2) Select the 4th picture in the folder
3) Explain the picture
4) Tag 4 people to do the same

So here's mine.


Okay, I had to cheat a little since I only have 3 folders on my laptop right now. If I had been looking on our actual computer then MAN would I have had options! But that computer is now Jeff's and I have no claim to it. Seriously I even felt guilty going on it to play solitaire the other day.

And before I get sidetracked again, the story behind the picture. This picture was taken a week and a half ago. My mom came up with a really cool idea to make us all feel closer during the holidays since us and my mom are here in Edmonton, and my sister and her husband and son are up in Peace River. We all do the same craft on the same night at the same time and take pictures to share with each other. On this particular night, my mom was over and we were baking cookies, and Kat and her fam were doing the same up north.

And now to the tagging part. Hmmm since I've never really participated in this before I don't know how to 'tag'. Who and how do I choose? So I'll take the easy way out and tag all of you that have your own blogs. What I want you to do is leave me the link to your blog post in my comments so that I can take a look too!

12 December 2008

If I had a million dollars.

There are truly only two places in the world where I feel like I need to have a never ending credit card that I never have to pay off. One of those places is (said to the tune of a choir of angels singing) IKEA. I feel about IKEA the way my sister feels about WalMart. It is heaven, and I could stay in the store for hours and hours, winding my way through their little mouse maze and looking at all the little things that I want to buy but have to restrain myself from. My home is an ode to IKEA. All of my bedroom furniture is the stylish and contemporary Malm line. I have the amazing Expedit bookshelf in my living room complete with coordinating boxes that hold all my junk. I did have the Ektorp sofa upstairs but it has been relegated to the basement to make room for my sectional (which unfortunately I didn't buy at IKEA but at the Brick). Liam's room used to have a loft bed from there, one that had a slide, and he has an Aneboda dresser, and all of his toy chests are from there. I've got art, rugs, curtains, kitchen stuff, organizers, you name it. When Jeff and I went there last weekend, we looked at tables for the kitchen, since I LOVE my current table but it is bar height and was meant for when we had a dining room. It just isn't realistic as a kitchen table that is used daily. Plus, the chairs are all f*cked up from everyone in my family being so hard on them. (yes I'm looking at you Jeff, mom, Kathleen, dad, Liam).

I heart IKEA.

The other place is Stampin Up! I recently got into this and oh my god I'm hooked. And you know, it's not even that I need to do the crafting, it's just that I NEED to have all the stuff. I need the paper, the inks, the crayons, the felts, the stamps, oh the list is endless. Rationally I know that I can get a lot of this stuff much cheaper at other places, but I have a catalogue that I can browse and it gets downright depressing when I have to keep in mind that I'm a SAHM and I don't have much disposable income. Just this morning, I emailed my consultant to let her know that I am coming to pick up my order, and I tacked on 2 more things that I really must have if she has them in stock at her house. That is my compromise with myself; I can buy it if and only if she has it in stock. If she doesn't have it readily available to me then I won't order it, keeping in mind that this rule only applies on *add-on* purchases, not the ones that I am required to make as part of the club I participate in. BUT this woman is a professional who makes quite a good living doing this, and so far she has had pretty much everything that I have tacked on to an order. She's counting on people like me.

That's me, easy money.

11 December 2008

Ya, I ate them all.

I am happy to report that I officially have my baking cabinet! So, I decided to make banana bread and I went to pull out all the ingredients (which I'm happy to say that I have). I then go into the fridge to grab a couple of eggs. Except they're all gone. People, I bought a carton of 18 eggs a week and a half ago, and they are ALL GONE. And since I don't drive I can't just run to the store and grab some. Sometimes I frustrate myself, I'm almost 30 and I don't have a license!

And now I have no banana bread either.

7 December 2008

He can't deny his heritage.

Jeff is the most typical Ukranian man alive. He's a total packrat, and our home is full of stuff that he 'might use, you never know when you might need it'. He has a fishing tacklebox full of little plugs and cords and junk. He has, ummmm, like 3 tool boxes. He even had a box full of every business card he's received over the last 20 years (he's that old). Everything he's ever owned has some special signifigance that only he can appreciate.

When we reno'd the basement, we ended up with a deep freezer and a fridge that needed to be gotten rid of. But nooooooo, it's not that easy to get rid of appliances and since he prides himself on being a 'cheap' Ukranian, here was his solution: he took the doors off of the freezer and fridge, turned them on their sides, spray painted them black, and put them in the garage. They are now our bomb proof cabinets. What happened to the doors, you might ask? Well he lag-bolted them to the walls and now they are shelves.

He briefly played with the idea of turning our old hot water tank into a firepit...not sure what's going on with that one. He hasn't said much about it lately, and he did mention that when our washing machine goes he wants to turn it into a firepit. So I don't know, we'll see.

But I may have won one round. He was so overcome with gratitude for the baking I did a couple nights ago that I could just see the longing in his face. After some lightning speed thinking on my part, I came up with a deal for him. In our cabinets, we have not one, or two, but three shelves full of coffee mugs. In another cabinet, we have two shelves full of glasses. Not even glasses you can really use, but those ones you got from McDonalds in the eighties that celebrated the Olympics. And other useless glasses that we have not used in the whole 1 1/2 years we've owned this house. So, I said that if he got rid of all the mugs and glasses that we don't ever use then I would have space to have all my ingredients for baking, and I would bake for him. And by getting rid of them, I didn't mean putting them in a box and putting them in the basement (his face fell because this was exactly what he was planning on doing), but actually donating them to Goodwill and getting them the hell out of my house. People, I have been trying to do this for years. He just boxes things up and puts them in the basement. It's very irritating.

But he agreed, and said he would do it this weekend. It hasn't happened yet, but I'm holding out hope. This will be a major win for me!

4 December 2008

Holding my breath.

Day number 2, and we have our 3rd successful nap! Little Nicky has been sleeping for 40 minutes now and I'm in heaven. Have I gotten anything done? Nope, I've been taking advantage by watching some Holmes on Homes (love that show) and surfing the net. God, what is it going to be like when he's actually sleeping through the night and I have a full 8 hours? I can't even imagine...I have the feeling that it won't even feel like work, taking care of the kids. And keeping the house clean? Well, we all know about the 30 minute mad dash *wink wink*.

Just kidding my love, I spend all day on my knees cleaning baseboards and such. Of course.

I'm not sure what happened in that little boys head that made him decide that he wanted to sleep again. Maybe he just realised that he may as well give in. But then again, maybe it was the fact that I gave in and went and dug out Liam's old bumper pads from when he was a baby and washed them up and put them in his crib. Now it feels less like a jail and more like a cloud? I know, I know, 'they' say that bumpers aren't a good idea because they restrict air flow yada yada yada. But here's is something that always bugged me about that theory: what happens to 'air flow' when baby is in a bassinette? That's an even smaller space than a crib, yet that is completely acceptable. I get it that they should be taken off when young man is pulling himself up and climbing on stuff, that makes sense. (But one good fall out of the crib would cure him of that particular adventure if you know what I'm sayin). I just wish that I had put the pads up 2 months ago, because I have the feeling that this is our turning point.

2 December 2008

In our house...

It's a battle of wills. And I must say that this little baby is putting up quite the fight! I've written about how I'm trying to get a schedule going on and the 'schedule' is working out just fine. It's the baby that is the problem now. About 3 weeks ago he decided that, nope, nah, sleep just wasn't a priority anymore and he wasn't going to participate in that particular activity during the day. So naps have been a fond memory around here. I've been fighting with him to sleep and I can get him to take maybe 10-15 minutes if I've just fed him and he's either sleeping in my arms or on the bed. The moment I try to move him he's awake. So one day I decided to just let him do his own thing and see what happened. He didn't take a nap ALL DAY. That's with waking up at 7 a.m. and going to bed at 8 p.m. He was tired but it's like he was testing me and he just wouldn't let his eyes close.

Gahhhhhh. Over the past few weeks I really feel like I've tried everything that I can think of. This kid has me over a barrel. I know it has something to do with his development, but I also know that this is the best time to teach him healthy sleep habits and that includes being able to put himself to sleep. I know I could just give in and let him sleep on our bed which is what he really wants, but then I'll be facing this all over again when we can finally move him into his crib during the night. So I figure I may as well force this kid to get used to it now so it won't be such a shock when he figures out that he has to be in there at night too.

We're letting him cry it out. It kills me. I had no problem doing it with Liam but that was probably because he was much more passive when it came to sleeping. The only thing I had to worry about with him was getting out of the room fast enough before his bottle came hurtling at my head. But with Nicky it's taking so much more effort to be strong about it. So as much as I dislike the idea of it, I think it's my best option. Unfortunately.

1 December 2008

We're wireless.

So this is how our Sunday night went: Jeff was sitting at the computer putting all the programs back on it after wiping out the system when it crashed, Liam was sitting next to me on the couch figuring out how to email his Nana, and I was FINALLY catching up on iVillage after 3 excruciating days without internet. But, you may wonder, how were all 3 of you on the computer at the same time. Well that's because we all have our very own computers now! Liam somehow managed to con his dad into giving him one of his old laptops, and when our computer crashed Jeff didnt think he'd be able to fix it so we went out and bought me my very own brand new beautiful laptop. Thank god for financing is all I can say.

Ya, we were all geeking out last night. And this is how I envision future Saturday nights: Jeff and I both sitting in the basement, him at the computer and me on the couch, playing online poker against each other.

**I would just like to add that I am ethically opposed to a 9 year old owning his own laptop (and before I got one of my own at that!). However, I didn't pay for it, and unfortunately my mind control contract got cancelled when his dad and I split up. Not that he didn't find the loopholes in said contract anyway.

And I am STAUNCHLY opposing the idea of a cell phone before the age of 15 AND a t.v. in his bedroom for at least a year or 2 more. Although Jeff has informed me that I can't always bend everyone (him) to my will all the time. I *think* that means that he plans on letting these things happen in the near future. We'll see.

24 November 2008

This is how I amuse myself.

I found out an interesting little tidbit the other day concerning my husband. It has to do with laundry. Growing up, my mom never used fabric softener in the wash when she was doing our laundry. That was a luxury, and as a single mother of two she kind of had to pick and choose the treats. Personally, I'd take our monthly adventures to Bonanza over fabric softener any day! Fast forward to me as an adult, and I've never seen the big hype about it. Laundry is laundry, it still smells clean, you use the dryer sheets so that there's no static, end of story. Hey, at least it gets done.

Jeff grew up with his mom using it all the time, however. You'd think the shit was liquid gold the way he goes nuts over it. Swear to god, he'll spend 5 minutes in front of all the selections sniffing them to see which one smells the best. I don't know why, because it always ends up being Downy. But whatever, we buy it and go on with our lives.

To me, using it is a pain in the butt! I know it's just one extra step when doing the laundry, but the bottle is too heavy to just pour into the washer cup thingy, so I have to pour it into ANOTHER cup just to put it into the wash. A couple months ago I just stopped using it. I didn't say anything to Jeff, even though I did feel a tiny stab of conscience every time I threw a load in and looked up at that bottle. I ignored that little stab though.

Okay so getting to my point. He noticed the lack of softener use, but didn't say anything. Until Saturday in the detergent isle at London Drugs when he stopped in front of the softener, and brought up the whole thing. Okay, okay, I got caught. I'll start using the freaking liquid gold if it'll make him happier. But actually another thing he noticed but didn't mention is that when I'm taking the clothes out of the washer and putting them in the dryer, I don't shake them out so that they don't wrinkle.


In case you didn't know this, my husband is a perfectionist.

And in case you also didn't know this, there is nothing quite as satisfying to me as doing small little things that annoy him. Pinching his butt as he walks up the stairs. Jumping out at him from behind doors. Turning all the lights out so it's pitch black and he can't see (this one is a fave). And now, added to the list, is doing the laundry and making sure he's downstairs watching as I take all the clothes and flinging them into the dryer in one huge pile of jumbled, wrinkly, mess.

19 November 2008

I feel rich now!

It's amazing how doubling your square footage can make you feel like you're freaking rich. I forgot what space feels like and now I feel like I have so much of it! And I swear to god, my house has never been cleaner. Really it's just cuz I have more floor space to spread it over. It's okay, cleaning the house is part of my job right? Mmmmmkay, when I had an office job I'll admit I slacked on certain aspects of that too :)

So, without further ado, here are the pictures that you all (okay, only Jess) have been bugging me about. I will try to follow the order of the last posts but we've changed the layout so it's a bit different.

Coming down the stairs. We've got actual linolium on them. It's a christmas miracle.


Here is the bathroom, such a huge change. I mean, you don't have to walk through the shower to get to the toilet and there's a sink in there too now.


Here is where I would post a pic of the storage room, but not alot changed in there besides painting it white and pouring cement so that it's even. Plus I forgot to download the pic into photobucket and doing it now is just too much work.

Okay here is the view from the hallway at the bottom of the stairs looking into the family room. I love coming down into my basement now. The next one is a different angle of the room, looking into the hallway. In that one you can see my laundry closet.



This next one is of the office/craft area. Pre-reno, there was a big wall here and it was a bedroom. In this photo you can see just to the left that there is a door. That used to lead to where the kitchen was, and the kitchen was accessed by another door that we walled over. Anyway, if that made any sense at all, the old kitchen is now going to be Liam's room. Although it's not finished yet.


And finally this is looking into the family room from the office.


Told ya you wouldn't recognize it!! There are still a couple very minor things that need to be done like finishing with the baseboards, and doing the framing for the doors to the storage room and my laundry closet, but it's LIVABLE. And I LOVE IT.

10 November 2008

Whew!!! And Booyah!!!

It has been a loooong road, but by this time tomorrow we should be relaxing in our brand freaking new basement! Let me tell you the story.

A little over a year ago we found out we were expecting. No suprise to me there, we were trying after all, but for some reason Jeff didn't think he could have kids. I think he was humoring me with the 'trying' (jokes on him right?). So once I got over my excitement and Jeff recovered from the shock, reality kicked in. Our home is cozy. Read, small. At just 1000 sq ft, it has 2 bedrooms on the main floor along with a decent sized living room and kitchen, and a bathroom. The basement was a train wreck. TRAIN WRECK. I'm going to show photo's, and beware there are lots because it's just all so spectacularily fugly that I just couldn't pick one.

Okay, this is the view coming down the stairs.


This is looking into what was our laundry/furnace/storage room.


When you look out of the laundry room toward where the bathroom is. The door is tucked around the corner but you can see it from the stairs shot.


And THIS is our downstairs bathroom. And yes we did actually have to use it while we were renovating our upstairs bath. Ughh.


And now looking into our family room.


This next one is looking toward where we used to have the office area set up. Behind that wall was a bedroom that was used as storage, and a kitchen from when previous owners actually rented the basement out. Can you imagine???


With the impending arrival of Nicholas, and with only 2 bedrooms upstairs, Jeff decided to renovate the basement so that we could move Liam down there. There was no way in hell that we would have subjected him to those living conditions. So everything got torn down, right to the concrete, and Jeff has been single handedly building out our new basement. He had one friend come over to help haul some garbage out, and another came over to help him install the new hot water tank. Other than that, it's ALL HIM. And keep in mind the only thing he has ANY experience in is electrical work. The rest (heating and ductwork, plumbing, framing, drywalling, etc.) he learned how to do from the internet, asking people questions and his amazing how-to book that we got as a wedding present.

Needless to say, I'm pretty damn proud of him. There are quite literally countless drops of blood, sweat, and tears over this basement. We have made it through a whole year of cluttered upheaval, and come out stronger than ever on the other side. Let me tell ya, it was tougher than tough. I wanted to smack some sense into him on more than one occassion, but somehow I kept it together. And me with my prego hormones running all over the place!

I'm going to do another post with pics of the completed space later on, hopefully once things are a little more set up. You wouldn't even recognize it as the same house!

8 November 2008

I knew I picked a gooder!

A couple of days ago, Jeff came out of the bathroom with a new goutee (sp?). I thought nothing of it, I mean sure it looks good *wink wink* but he occasionally play around with his facial hair. This morning he was rubbing his face and kinda bitching about how itchy it's getting with the hair. So I told him to just shave it off, no big deal. That's when he looked at me and said "I can't, I'm growing it out for Nicky."

Apparently he noticed how much Nicky loves pulling on Grandpas beard and wanted to provide his son with the same entertainment. Plus I think he was a bit jealous too. He told me that he's gotten WAY more smiles and laughs from the baby with the goutee than before, and so it's staying.

I guess I'll just have to listen to the complaining :) I can deal because it's for a good cause.

5 November 2008

Maybe a mental breakthrough? I dunno.

My baby is a pretty big boy, 17 1/2 pounds at his last weighing which was a month ago. And since he's 6 months old and more than heavy enough, why isnt he sleeping through the night? Cuz this mama is getting pretty tired and is kinda over the whole co-sleeping deal. Don't get me wrong, I love having that warm little body next to me, and waking up to his smiles and giggles and giving him tired kisses all over his face the second I wake up...but it all comes at a price. Like, every morning I am shoved to the edge of our bed because though he starts out in the middle, throughout the night he snuggles closer and closer like he's trying to get inside my skin and live there. So, and mind you this is in my deep sleep, I shove over to give him room. I'm shocked I haven't ended up on the floor yet.

Oh and another by-product of this co-sleeping business? My own husband is stuck on the couch because he doesn't get a proper night sleep since he's hyper aware of every move Nicky makes. This is very sad to me, and even though he might not be getting lucky every night, dammit I want to be able to sleep next to him.

So I have been trying my best to sleep train for the past 2 weeks and let me tell you...it's not working out very well. I can't let the poor baby "cry it out" in the traditional sense, but I have been scheduling his naps and going in every few minutes to pat his back, shush him, etc. Still after 2 weeks, it's taking an average of 30 minutes for him to fall asleep. Ummm okay, it may have taken a while for it to sink through but I think I've realised that this method isn't going to work. Back to the drawing board.

And then today, as I was passing Nicky in his excersaucer on my way about the house, I got the "look" from him. The "hey mom, bring those boobs over here I'm kinda bored and I think I might want to eat for 30 seconds and then fall asleep for 30 minutes and drive you insane" look. And me, like a dumb milk cow, start walking over to him whilst hiking up my shirt. And then I stop. This is the mental breakthrough part. It occurs to me that maybe I shouldn't feed him right at that moment because, hey, he just ate 2 hours before. And it was a big meal too, AND he had just had his lunch a half hour before that. So he's probably not really hungry yet.

This, in turn, got me thinking that maybe the reason he's not sleeping through the nights or having good naps durning the days is because I'm trying to mix 2 different parenting styles together. I demand feed, but I'm trying to schedule his naps. Hey, it worked for Liam so I never gave it much thought when it came to Nicky. I'm thinking maybe this little one needs a bit more structure.

So, I'm going to stop the demand feeding. And I'm going to milk-smother him in the evenings in an effort to put him into a milk induced coma that he hopefully won't come out of until about 7 a.m. Heck, it's worth a shot. Being able to sleep a whole 8 hours straight for the first time in....I don't know how long....will be SO worth it!

Rock on.

4 November 2008

Coolness Inc.

So, a friend of mine has been bugging me for years to try scrapbooking, ever since she went on maternity leave with her first baby. He's now 3, so that should tell you something about my super amazing procrastination skillz. Anyway, now that I am on mat leave myself and my baby has finally figured out that, wow wonder of wonders, he doesn't need me to hold him 24/7, I have a bit of spare time on my hands. (There were a lot of comma's in that sentance-you'll find that I'm the comma queen).

So, in light of my crossover to the dark side, er, I mean scrapbooking side, I went with some friends to a late night crop on Saturday. Guys, these are great! You get to go to a craft store when it's CLOSED. You don't have to worry about other customers being all up in your face and shoving past you, you can browse all you want, and you don't have to pay till the end of the night! Ahhhhh, it was so hard for me to resist temptation. See, since I'm pretty new to this I really don't have all that much in the way of embellishments (that is cool person talk for cute little decorations that go on your page) and so I pretty much needed everything in the store. Seriously. I managed to restrain myself and only spent $20. But when you add that to the money I spent at Michaels on paper and at the dollar store on embellishments, well lets just say that it's a good thing my husband is artistic and actually encourages this kind of hobby.

So I'm pretty proud of what I did, I think they're great for a first effort! Here's the first one I did. The top pic is from the night that we got engaged, and the bottom one is from some random night out.


This second one is of my boys. I bought this stamp alphabet on sale and apparently the reason I got such a good deal on it was because the P is backwards. Stupid dumb stamp makers.


This last one is my favorite one that I did. It's got my favorite pics of the boys together. I'm so glad that, at least for now, they get along so well! And I have proof! Because once Nicky becomes mobile and starts getting into Liam's stuff....well let's just say that I may have to get my license so that I can drive to the pub and drown my sorrows while Jeff plays referee. Gaaaaad, that's gonna be scary.


You know what else is really cool about scrapbooking? No kids for 7 whole hours! When you stay at home with them all day every day 60 minutes an hour 24 hours a day 7 days a week - insert gasping breath here - it's pretty much heaven. It's even hard to dredge up sympathy for the husband that is stuck at home with the screaming infant. Although I did manage a couple drops. I'm not THAT heartless...

Rock on --> I really want to get one of those little siggy icon thingys for my page...does anybody know where I need to go to find them?

3 November 2008

All the cool kids are doing it.

So, I'm jumping on this bandwagon - side note: notice how every new blogger says this in the first paragraph of their first post? I'm jumping on that bandwagon too! Actually, it's kinda like when my best friend and I got our noses pierced in high school...I'm only doing it because Jess is doing it! Hehe. Cuz I'm a follower.

I guess I should start by introducing you to my fam. First up we have Liam, my firstborn son. He is nine years old (God that makes me feel old) and is pretty cool. I mean, come on, his favorite band is Black Sabbath. Or Guns n Roses. As IF you aren't jealous that I have such a cool kid!


Next up we have Nicholas, my sweet little baby boy. He is six months old right now and is VERY rolly polly. He hasn't told me yet what his favorite band is, however, he can be put asleep by Mama singing some Radiohead to him on Rockband.


And then there's my fabulous husband Jeff. I think the photo below says it all. Though I'm not treated to him dressed up in full Glam Rock gear on a daily basis, he does make me laugh all. the. time. I couldn't ask for more.


And there you have it, the people I care most about in the world. I'll try to update daily, for all 2 of you people who will actually be reading this :)

Rock on.