10/21/2014

Bathtime and bedtime...



These bath pictures are of baby Soren, although I had to double check as Poppy looks so similar right now! Bath-times around here are sometimes fun and sometimes stressful... pretty much like anything baby-related. The kids seem to go through phases of loving the bath, and then they promptly hate it for weeks on end and you feel like you are torturing them every evening. It's hard to predict how bathtime will play out. At the moment, both seem to be enjoying it, but don't always do the best in the tub together. Poppy likes to stand up, and Soren likes to play a bit too roughly. The results are usually not good.

After baths I lotion the babes thoroughly with Aveeno baby moisturizer. They both have eczema, and the Aveeno products seem to work really well on their skin. I also love the soothing bath treatment and try to use it at least once per week. Poppy usually goes to sleep first, and I put her in her miracle sleep sack and nurse her. We turn the lights out and have a little cuddle in the dark, and then I lie her down in her crib and say good-night.

I then go next-door to Soren's room and find him racing around his playroom naked. He seems to completely lose his mind before bedtime, and turns into a crazed beast that we classify as being 'chonked'. It basically means overtired and all wound up. He loves telling me that he's 'Chonked in the Chonk-Chonks', to which I usually sigh and envision a glass of wine after he's asleep:)

After wrangling the wild beast into his pj's, we brush his teeth together and then pick out a story or two. When daddy's away I almost always read two books... but most nights we stop at one. Soren asks to 'get cozy', and I tuck his blankets around him extra tight. I then sing two songs, and whisper good-night. Almost always, I have a moment during bedtimes when I can't believe how lucky I am. For as long as I can remember, I dreamed about the day I would have my own little family. During the busyness of our days I sometimes let stress overtake me, and I yell at Soren or wish I were someplace else. At bedtime, I know there is absolutely no other place I'd rather be. My two little babies are warm and clean and cuddled, and are happily dreaming of tomorrow. I get to hold their little bodies before they drift off for the night, and I don't take it for granted. And then I go downstairs, and pour myself a nice glass of red wine.

10/13/2014

A little birthday


Miss Poppy turned one this weekend! We were so excited to make it special for her... Soren has been talking about her birthday for weeks. He really wanted me to bake her a 'baby doll' cake, but I think he was happy with the strawberry banana pancakes I whipped up on sunday morning. We are having a small family party for her next weekend, as my sister (and parents) were away in Chicago this weekend. A little thing called the Chicago Marathon managed to trump Pop's first birthday... :)

While no big parties were thrown in her honour, we did our best to make her feel special. Starting with a happy birthday song and candle in her pancake, and spending lots of time doing her favourite things. Which would include lots of playgrounds, jumping on the bed, climbing stairs, and eating. And I can't forget walking! A few weeks before her first birthday Poppy started to take some tentative steps, and she's now walking all over the place. In the cutest wobbly steps, with her hands out in the air for balance.

It's hard to believe that last year we were meeting her for the first time. She's completed our family in such a wonderful way, and gets sweeter every day. We love you Poppy Olivia.



10/06/2014

Human Rights Museum


On a foggy sunday morning a few weeks back, we loaded up the whole family and took a tour of the new Canadian Museum for Human Rights. I had won the ticket lottery that was distributing free tickets, and since it was only an hour long we thought it would be ok to bring the babies with us. Also, my parents came along and I have to give a lot of credit to my dad, who carried Soren on his shoulders for most of the way.



The museum is absolutely breathtaking, and I cannot wait to explore the whole building. It's opening in it's entirety on november 11th - remembrance day. On our visit we toured through four of the eleven galleries. I can see ourselves coming here regularly as the kids get older, and are able to understand more about human rights. There are galleries dealing with indigenous peoples, the holocaust, and the definition of human rights. The backlit alabaster ramps are stunning. 



Soren's favourite part was the line-up to get inside... he ran up and down like a maniac to the amusement of those in line. I can only imagine if adults had that type of energy at 8:30am on a sunday! Once inside he paid some attention to the tour guide, but had to stifle a yawn until he discovered the fun in pretending I had a mustache.

Poppy, on the other had, thoroughly enjoyed playing with an empty pez dispenser as we waited in line, and once inside promptly fell asleep. This is the only national museum located outside of Ottawa... go Winnipeg!

10/02/2014

Summertime flavours all year round

One of our favourite things to eat in the summer (or anytime, really!) are popsicles. For my birthday back in July, my sister gave me a great set of sailboat popsicle molds, and I've been using them ever since.

I really like the fact that I can control exactly what goes into the pops, so I usually use natural fruit juices or yogurt. I was excited to find some new juice varieties in the chilled section by SunRype. Their juices contain no preservatives, artificial colours, or flavours. I was drawn to the FruitActiv Bright Eyes Nectarine Orange Pineapple Blend because we all love those fruits, and also because their colours tend to be a little less messy than rich berry colours. If you've ever tried to give a three year old a popsicle, you know that a lot of it will end up all over them


Making the popsicles was as simple as it sounds - simply pour the chilled juice into the molds and freeze for a couple of hours. As far as desserts go, this one is pretty healthy, and we make an activity out of it by going outside to eat. 


Another great flavour is the Fresh Pressed Apple (also found in the chilled section). I sometimes find juice to be too sweet for me, but the tartness in the Pressed Apple was perfect, and I've found it to be a lovely accompaniment to my morning coffee. We honeymooned in the Okanagan Valley, where SunRype is located, and I can definitely remember the abundance of beautiful fresh fruit. 


If you like the taste and freshness of chilled juices, you'll be excited to find four new varieties by SunRype in the refrigerated section of your grocery store. In addition to the Fresh Pressed Apple and the FruitActiv Nectarine Orange Pineapple, there is a Fruit Plus Veggies and Fibre option, as well as a FruitActiv Super Antiox Berry Pomegranate Smoothie that contains the power of polyphnols - natures own antioxidants. Each is tasty, refreshing, and naturally delicious.  

SunRype has some great recipes and product ideas on their facebook and pinterest pages. Also, they regularly reward fans with SunRype coupons on their instagram account - simply tag photos with the hashtag #SunRype


This post was brought to you by SunRype, however the images and opinions are my own. For more information, please visit www.sunrype.ca.

9/28/2014

Park etiquette - baby bullies and moms who don't intervene




* These photos were taken a couple of years ago, when Soren was about 14 months. He's so tiny! 

Yesterday, being the beautiful day that it was, I took the kids down the street to a little playground. When we arrived we were the only ones there, and after a couple minutes a little boy and his mom showed up. The little boy was about five, and immediately asked Soren if he wanted to play with his bow and arrow set. I thought this was nice of him, although a bow and arrow set is a slightly odd toy to bring to the park! (The arrows were plastic.) Poppy and I headed for the swings as I kept my eye on Soren and the little boy.

Pretty immediately it became obvious that this little guy was a bully. He was directing Soren on what to do, how to play, where to stand, etc. Soren didn't seem to mind, and the 'rules' he was dictating seemed harmless. Poppy and I moved onto the play structure, which is when the little bully sprang into action.

'YOU ARE THE BABY PIRATE!' he shouted at Poppy.

'YOU ARE THE BAD PIRATE!' he screamed at me.

I ignored him, thinking he would move on. "GET OFF THE SHIP!' he screamed, as Soren watched in horror/amazement. At this point, I calmly told him that we could all play, and he was not the boss.

"GET OFF!!!' he continued yelling, and began advancing towards Poppy. 'Hey! Be careful, she is just a baby', I said standing between him and poor Poppy. That's when he started pushing me, and began headbutting me! Quite forcefully, I might add, as this little guy was quite a brute. I tried to explain that he could not push/touch me, I didn't want to play this way, and that we would have to leave if he continued. At this point we were at the top of a fairly large play structure, and I didn't want any of us to topple off onto the wood chips six feet down.

So what do you do when a five year old bully is attacking you? Grab your baby and retreat down the slide. Seriously, I fled. I called to Soren that we had to leave and then walked back home, as I tried to explain about what happened and how it isn't appropriate to play that way. I was rather ashamed of myself that I had let this little bully get the best of us, but I wasn't quite sure what I could have done differently. The mom MUST have been able to hear, unless she was deaf. She was a very short distance away (texting on her cell), and there was no one else at the park. I suppose I should have gone and talked to her about her sons behaviour, but to me it seemed obvious that she did not care, or was not interested. In that case - did I really want to get into an argument with her?

I tried talking to this kid for a good few minutes before the physical abuse started, and my words were not getting through to him. I didn't want to touch him - even by merely protecting myself and kids - so I took the slide down and away from him. It was the weirdest situation, and something I'm still scratching my head over. I would have expected Soren to get into a playground scrap much more than I expected to get into one myself!