As I may have mentioned before, brunch is our favourite meal of the day. Soren is usually on his best behaviour at that time, and he loves all breakfast foods. We also find that brunch restaurants are usually pretty kid-friendly, so we can try out places we wouldn't be able to go to for dinner.
My grandpa flew in from Palm Springs for a very quick visit, so we met up with him and my family on saturday morning at the Park Cafe. Maybe next winter we can change the location to Palm Springs! We sure loved our vacation there last year… and are sad not to be going to the desert this year. Although, we are in the midst of planning a fun trip to Charleston and Savannah next month, which gives us something to look forward to.
As you can see from the photos above Poppy has started eating! Our paediatrician recommended starting solids, and we could tell that she was ready. So far more food ends up on her face than in her mouth, but she seems to enjoy the experience which is the most important part.
On Sunday we met up with our good friends and tried out a new brunch spot - the marion street eatery. Our friend Mike is currently a contestant on MasterChefCanada, and so we usually trust his recommendations:) He's currently in the top ten - and I'm excitedly watching every monday night to see if he can win it all. Back to brunch - it was great! Really nice decor, good food, and great company. Definitely a winning week-end when it comes to food!
At four and a half months, Poppy gets carried around a lot. It must be so funny to see the world from her view… Her favourite thing to do is watch her brother. He entertains her for hours on end, although he's not really that into her yet.
On saturday morning we stopped by one of our favourite bakeries - le croissant - and Soren and I walked in together hand in hand. He peered into the bakery case and excitedly asked me what 'those' were, pointing to some macaroons. 'Would I like them mommy?' he asked in his sweetest voice. Well, as he eats most anything that is baked or has sugar in it, I thought it was a pretty safe bet. The baker wrapped up four macaroons in a special little box and tied it with a ribbon, and Soren carried the box back to the car. He was very proud of himself as he tried to tell Tyler what was in the box. When we arrived at our friends house for croissants and coffee, he lined them all up neatly before digging in. Poppy watched enviously, as she would love to get any type of food in her mouth.
We have not started feeding her solids yet, but she's sucked on an apple slice, a banana, and a piece of ham (from her dad!). It will be fun when we start to introduce actual food into her diet - and I'm hoping it may entice mr. pickiest to eat a few more things. There is no way his assortment of acceptable foods could get any smaller - I could probably count the number of foods he eats on both hands. I asked him today if he would like to help me make turkey meatballs, and he replied 'no - I won't like them. But we could go to ikea and buy some'. sigh. ikea - one, Erika - zero.
When Soren started preschool at the beginning of January, the teacher asked which kids were potty-trained. At the time Soren was not. Fast-forward a week, and we showed up at school in underwear! I know people worry about potty-training a lot, and many parents and kids struggle with it for months. For us, it was a pretty easy transition.
When Soren was about 18 months we bought a potty, and occasionally he would sit on it. More occasionally, he would pee on it. We would cheer and clap and reward him with one smartie every time he had a potty success. We'd talk about using the potty, and the toilet, but he was pretty attached to his diapers. After he turned two I bought him some underwear, but mostly he would cry and ask for his diaper back if I tried to slip on a pair of boxer-briefs.
I kept hearing about the three day method, but to be honest I was never motivated to clear my schedule and stay home for three days. This past fall we started using the potty more regularly - in the morning, before and after naps, and before bed. Every time I sat him down he would go - and he had no issue with pooping on the potty which I've heard can be a struggle. Still, we weren't quite there yet. He would not ask to go, and still begged for his diapers in the morning when I was getting him dressed.
One morning, as Tyler and I were getting ready, Soren was running around in his pyjamas. All of a sudden he turned to us and said 'I think I need to use the potty'. We looked at each other, and he proceeded to pull his pyjama bottoms down and sat on the potty. When he was done he happily took his smartie and went back to playing. We were shocked! It was the motivation I needed to know that he was fully ready, and we could do this.
Over the last month we've said good-bye to diapers, except at night. Five out of seven nights he wakes up dry… but I don't want to change the sheets in the middle of the night once or twice per week. We've had virtually no accidents, and we no longer give out smartie incentives. I wonder how long I need to carry a spare pair of pants around in my bag? So far they have not been used, but I know the day I take them out will be the day. While there is a bit more work involved in making numerous bathroom trips, I do enjoy only changing one babies diapers. And I'm happy that it was such an easy switch for Soren - proof that toddlers will do things when they want, and usually only then.
one - a lot of couch jumping! The weather has been so cold… we are going a bit stir crazy. I cannot wait until we can go to the playground to get our energy out.
two - the poor dogs don't get nearly enough exercise. It's amazing to think that we used to take them to the dog park every single weekend.
three - Poppy's cute bracelet was made by her daddy with love
four - mini sugar cookies to celebrate Tyler's parents fiftieth wedding anniversary. We also indulged in homemade gyozas, prosciutto wrapped asparagus, chocolate cake, and a swedish sandwich cake which was very 'different', in a good way.
five - I had to include a picture of the Swedish Sandwich Cake after mentioning it above!
six - when Tyler's parents were married they were too young to legally have a drink. Fifty years is a looong time, and fiftieth wedding anniversaries are increasingly rare. We are lucky to have such great marriage inspirations! Also, Tyler looks so much like his dad it is crazy. I asked Soren who was in the picture and he said 'Daddy'.
Man oh man… having a two-year old can be TOUGH! There are so many highs and lows, so many times when you think 'what am I doing?' It's exhausting.
Today was the nicest day of the winter, I'm sure, and we took full advantage by going to the Festival du Voyaguer in St. Boniface, the french part of Winnipeg. As soon as we got there Soren started asking for treats, so we bought him a beaver tail - a sugary donut-type thing that's covered with cinnamon. He liked it… for about 3 whole minutes until he was ready for another treat.
He also liked the old fort, and we got our exercise walking up and down the stairs for awhile. I got a little extra exercise by hauling my fifteen pound chunker around in the Bjorn. She loved being carried, and kept her eyes open for hours as we looked around at all of the sites. We had some good chats, too:)
In this last photo Soren may look cute and sweet, however another little boy got an unexpected shove when he walked through a second later. Terrible! Luckily the other parents just laughed and their little guy was unfazed. As my husband pointed out on our drive home - we choose to bring him into this world, and it's our job to teach him how to be a good person. This is not always an easy job, but it is one we signed up for, and we knew it would be challenging. That's why early bedtimes are important, and shared beers on the couch!