Friday, August 27, 2010

Back to school

When Seth got home from his first day, the first thing he said as he sat to take off his shoes was, "Where's my blankie?". There's no big day a good sook on the couch with his blankie and thumb can't fix.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

5 weeks

Wow. Two babes are sleeping, two boys are at school. Must type quickly!

Having a babe in the middle of summer has meant that regardless of Max's arrival life has not slowed down a bit. As every Canadian does, we enjoy summer to the fullest while it's here. Max has had a full little life already!

In five short weeks, Max has visited with family, family, and more family, visiting cousins here and traveled to visit the ones we love in Nova Scotia, made a day trip to Kings Landing, took his big brothers and sister and cousins to the fair, been to the petting zoo, watched summer fireworks, gathered around campfires, attended a birthday party, attended a wedding (sleeping soundly for mama through the dance!), and watched as his big brothers head off for school. 

In five short weeks, Max has gained 4 pounds and learned how to smile. 

I love this boy.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The TV Crackdown

So last Tuesday, my patience expired.

Thane and Seth were lying on the deck, moaning like they'd been shot.

The cause? Mommy had turned off the tv, closed the DS, and told them to go outside to play.

I was sitting on the porch swing, attempting to enjoy the beautiful outdoors and gorgeous weather over their moans and groans, and was patiently suggesting ideas for outdoor active things they could do. Every idea was the worst idea ever suggested to them.

So I did it.

I said the unthinkable.

"No screentime for a week guys."

Did that just come out of my mouth? Troy stopped tinkering on the weedwhacker, looked at me with his eyebrow raised, as if to say, did you really just do that to us? Did I want to do that to myself?

The boys looked at me in shock. And then they both broke down in tears.

The tears did it for me though, my resolve was strengthened, we needed a screentime break.

*     *     *

Fast forward a few days.

The tears subsided very quickly and the kids got into their groove. I'm eating breakfast and having my coffee at the table, where the kids are, instead of my usual breakfast beside them on the couch as they wake up to cartoons. 

Thane has decided to rewrite his Tarzan book into a play. He's busy trying to figure out how to use his three available cast members effectively, taking into careful consideration that Claire's lines can't be long, or include words at all for that matter. He decides she can be Kala, Tarzan's gorilla mommy.   

Seth has dug through the coloring books and found one of his writing practice books. He's working away on a page about patterns. Claire is 'helping' him, coloring on the opposite page.

The day continues and the kids imagine, dig into their costumes, play outside cheerfully, build creative lego masterpieces, read, write, draw, paint, generally enjoying themselves and each other, using their brains and their bodies, and getting outdoors. My focus on the kids is stronger, our house was so quiet, and I was so productive, even with spending more time with the kids. 

Why do we want to turn it on again?

Monday, August 9, 2010

Flowers for Claire

I finally took the time to 'finish' this reversible sunhat for Claire. I actually started it last year, but eighty percent finished it got pushed aside during the move. I just found it the other day when organizing -unpacking my sewing boxes and realized it would still fit her this summer. The fabric is just leftover from a sling I made a while back. She likes it!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Baby Love

It's official, Max is a hit.

The kids love their new sibling. All three of them think he is the sweetest thing, the best new toy they could have asked for. Watching them with him makes me think I couldn't ask for better kids. Everytime he fusses Claire looks up at me with concern and runs to him, often with one his blankies to offer him, a sweet gesture since for her no problem is too big for blankie to fix. She climbs up on the side of the changing table during his diaper changes and sings her no-words songs to him and pats his head so gently. Seth looked down at Max the other day and said "He's just sooo adorable mommy!", and Thane keeps asking how many more babies we'll have.

Of course, he's not stealing their toys yet!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Love the Place You Live: Kings Landing

Last weekend, we took the gang on a daytrip to Kings Landing, a historical settlement near Fredericton. It was a biggie on Thane's summer to-do's, so despite being a little intimidated at going on a big day trip with a two-week old, off we went.

It was beautiful day with gorgeous houses and landscapes to appreciate (that little sewing room inspires me!), dances to be had (note Seth's round-dance, he was so pleased they let him volunteer), delicious food (we ate at the King's Head Inn there), and sleepy kids to bring home.

It was a GREAT day.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

A treat

I decided to treat myself with a new book. Or two.

I want to get Buddhism for Mothers, A Calm Approach to Caring for Yourself and Your Children, by Sarah Napthali. I'm having a little trouble finding it though, so I may end up with her second book, Buddhism for Mothers of Young Children. I could use a little reminder read on how to keep calm and carry on!

And then I want to get a sewing book, 'cause apparently I think I have time for sewing projects. But I can't decide between Handmade Beginnings: 24 Sewing Projects to Welcome Baby (Full of cute ideas, and highly recommended. SouleMama featured a pattern for cute little toddler pants from this one.), Doodle Stitching: Fresh & Fun Embroidery for Beginners (I have a plain sling crying for embellishment, but I don't really know where to begin with it), or Sew Liberated (another big contender).

Any recommendations?

Sunday, August 1, 2010

What I forgot about babies...

1. I forgot how much attention babies bring from strangers.

On my kinder, gentler days I appreciate that everyone loves babies and pause to be proud and enjoy their fawning over my child. On other days it flusters me at best while I'm busy head-counting my other three and attempting to get them somewhere on time. On my worst days I'm cursing whoever raised these close-talkers who think that a baby gives them permission to touch me and my baby. And then I tell my bitchy self to get back in my head.

Let me round that out with a few sweeter thoughts. I also forgot:

2. How soft babies are. Maxwell's little cheeks, his fuzzy head full of hair, his clothes and blankies, everything about him is soft.

3. How often newborns poop! It's a far cry from Claire's two, maybe three diaper changes a day.

4. How portable newborns are. You just take them anywhere, anytime. If he's tired, he just goes to sleep, hungry, I just nurse him, as opposed to a toddler's version of tired (or our preschooler for that matter), which in our case is usually a loud and very noticable event.

5. How insatiably hungry I am, all the time. I think breastfeeding takes more out of me than being pregnant does, if that's possible.

And I'll add a number 6 for good measure.

6. How slow it is to type with one-hand. I'm getting a whole lot of sitting time in while nursing, surfing the net and tv with a babe in one hand is easy, but typing is another matter. So, be patient with me, I'll slowly but surely have more, possibly innane, baby babble to share with you.
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