Tag Archives: Parent

A Day in the Life of a 15 Month Old

At the time of Writing this my son is about 15 months old. Although by the time you read this he might be maybe 17 months, due to the fact that I am writing some blogs to help get through the summer and moving provinces for less stress on myself. Though I don’t think much will really be changing in that time span. Let’s Jump in!

6am-7am : This is typically where we start the day. Sometimes my son wakes up as his Dad goes to work however occasionally he also goes back to sleep. When this happens he sleeps in a bit and if not he normally plays in his crib. I very rarely actually go back to sleep since my child is one who likes to bite the crib however sometimes he likes to lay there and roll around and toss his little blanket around. It also has tags on it that he likes to play with his fingers also too.

: This is when we wake up, get him and myself dressed for the day. I throw on a bottle of 3% milk and put him in his play pen. This is so I can run to the bathroom myself, as well as take the dog outside who has already been looking at me for 5 minutes when he heard the little fella wake up!

730am-830am : This would be his bottle. Now he is old enough he probably doesn’t need it but we dont really encourage him to drink it all. It is there if he wants it and if he doesn’t that is okay also too. Then we normally sit on the floor and play with toys and wake up for the day. For some reason he is normally super chatty and raring to go with energy!

830am-930am : This is normally when we do breakfast. We do anything from oatmeal and fruit, to some toast or eggs. Just depends on the day honestly. After he is done eating and sometimes before it oatmeal is too hot for example, I will do the dishes or tidy the kitchen up. After he eats he normally sits in his high chair for me to finish up also or prep something maybe muffins, or chop up veggies for the slow cooker. He normally has some hand toys or even measuring cups he likes to bang, with a cool glass of water. He can play pretty independently but we do have our stories together!

930am-1030am is another time we play on the floor. If the weather is not nice or too hot we don’t normally go for a walk, however it the weather is nice we do end up going for a walk or anywhere! Could even go outside depending on the mood for the day.

1030am : Snack time! Snacks can be anything from toast if you haven’t already had it before, sometimes apple sauce, fruit or banana’s, muffin, or yogurt too.

1030-1130am: This is when we start to wind down a bit and play a little however we also start to think about lunch time. Sometimes the time fluctuates depending if my son was up closer to 6am or closer to 7am.

1130am : Lunch time! Sometimes we try to have meat and potatoes, sometimes we have eggs if we haven’t had them already. Sometimes we do pasta and sauce or cheese with it. Things that are not super big but enough to be filling. Sometimes as mentioned before we will try to eat a bit earlier depending on how tired he is.

12pm – 2pm : This is typically when Vincent goes to his crib. Sometimes he falls asleep easier than other days however this is when he typically naps. Sometimes he tries to play with us by throwing his blanket out, or his soother (Which we will be weaning by now or have it gone!) and we just go in. Do not talk. And encourage him to fall asleep. Typically he will be asleep within 5-20 minutes again depending on how tired he is. We also do not normally go into the room til about 2pm though if he did not fall asleep til closer to 1230pm we will let him sleep a bit closer to 230pm. Even if he wakes up we just watch him and don’t go up right away. This is so he knows that it is quiet time.

2pm-3pm is when we wake up. We play and relax a bit as he is normally still pretty sleepy. Sometimes we even make our video phone calls to my parents (Since we have moved at the time of publishing before we would do video chats!) Sometimes we go outside depending on the weather or we just hang out and read stories.

3pm : Snack time! Again same typical foods as the ones from earlier just obviously we try not to give the same thing though as that would be super boring! We do try to spice it up and change them around from day to day in order to not get tired from other things.

4pm is supper time. This is normally a bigger meal like beef, chicken or even fish, then we normally do some potatoes and veggies or sorts. It really depends on what we have. We still do ice cube trays of food however we don’t puree anything. Sometimes we mash things though for smaller bite sized pieces but nothing is pureed. When we prepare meat it is easier to use a nice sharp pair of scissors also to be able to make pieces that wont be able to be chocked on.

430pm-545pm : This is the final stretch before bedtime. We typically put his favorite show on at some point close to 445pm or 5pm and he watches a few shows of blue clues, bubble guppies, or whatever else you have that he seems to enjoy lately. This is nearly the only screen time that my son currently has unless I have to put him in his play pen to flip laundry or something.

545pm – 630pm is the unwind for the evenings. We put the final bottle on, have a bedtime snack. Something a bit more filling like a muffin with yogurt or something or that nature. Then we have a bath if it is bath night. We were doing baths every second night and then a bath soak in the winter to help relax him but we stopped because my son was having really dry skin. every 3 nights seems to work well for us and his skin unless he is very dirty from a big poop or something! After everything is done we read a few stories after in pajamas and cream is put on.

645pm or so is bedtime. However now that he is getting older he normally rolls around and things and play with his blanket as he falls asleep more towards 7pm or even 715pm some nights!

There you have it! That is a day in the life of a 15 month old. Sure days can change depending on how tired someone is or not, But overall, This is pretty much what happens!

Do you do anything special with your children every day?
Do you like routine or do you like to wing it?

Let me know in the comments below!

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Putting Yourself First as a Mom

Putting yourself can be hard for anyone. As my dad always said “Stop burning the candle at both ends” which is a lot easier said than done too. Even when you don’t have kids a lot of people, like myself, always find themselves putting others above their own needs. Becoming a parent doesn’t change that you simply are just pushing yourself further down the list which is not always a good things. Yes, your children will go first in a lot of aspects of your life. However that doesn’t mean that you should ignore yourself. If you become run down and tired or exhausted even then you will find yourself struggling to put your children first as you may want to do.

I also realize while writing this that if you are a single parent with little to no help when it comes to your children that it may be hard for you to find time to put yourself first. I understand that. I am fortunate that I have a partner as well as will be living close to family that will be able to help when I need it for whatever reason. Not to say I will take advantage of this but the opportunities to put myself first might be easier than someone who is doing this alone. But that shouldn’t mean that you are any less important and there is no way to put yourself first. There just might need to be some creative out of the box thinking happening to do this.

Putting yourself first does NOT have to be some big extravagant thing. You can do very little things in order to do this. You don’t even have to spend a lot of money on putting yourself first either. Though we think of self care as a parent or a mom as maybe going on some shopping spree with the girls, or even a night to the movies with friends, it doesn’t have to be like that at all. It can be something as simple as watching a movie at night once the kids have gone to bed, taking a nice warm bubble bath and relaxing for an hour in the water. It can be creating some art with a pen and paper or writing a short story. Putting yourself can also mean doing absolutely nothing once the kids go to bed. Some of the nights I do this, i can tell you I feel the best. Not having to think about doing any house work or laundry just seems to be right sometimes. Remember, those dishes in the sink are not going anywhere, they will still be there in the morning if you don’t want to miss that special finale of the show you have been bingeing to catch up! even dying your own hair can be something that you enjoy doing, this is one I personally try to do when I feel run down, nothing like a fresh hair color or style to really enforce how i feel about myself!

Another thing we tend to put on the back burner as parents is our health. When it comes to our kids we are the biggest advocates for them when they are unwell doing everything within our power to make them feel better. When it comes to us, we will do anything we can to ignore the issue and hope it magically goes away. It sometimes does, but it also sometimes gets worse. I am guilty of this majorly. I need to start to put myself first. If you have to get take out, or skip cleaning for a few days and literally keep your kids alive that is a good thing. Sometimes when we are run down we also can be making ourselves sick too. This would be a prime example of when you spread yourself too thin. I used to do this especially at my old job working with disabled adults, You can read more about it here.

And lastly, if you are able to have someone whether family or friends help out. Take them up on the offer to look after your kids for a few hours. You do not need to spend some money on this. You could even take the time to go to a park or a quick walk. Even go to a picnic for one and read a book under a tree, or window shop or grab a coffee and enjoy some alone time. Sometimes the nicest moments i have is when I can go to a doctors appointment and I can jam to some music as well as just enjoy the quiet even if I am not doing a whole lot. And yes, with the virus around the world loosening though some places are extremely difficult in their 3rd or more waves of it, you can still be creative and think about things for you! Even if they are inside your own home too!

What I am ultimately trying to say, as a mother to another mother or father. Take care of yourself. I know it can be hard to think about it or to actually follow through with it but at the end of the day you cannot be the best you can be if you do not feel your best! Remember you are a great parent even if some days you might not have the cleanest house, or the best home cooked meals available. Doing your best looks to be many different colors and there is no right or wrong way to take care of yourself. As long as you are putting some time into it. It does not have to be every day either, it can be once a week, or twice a week, even a few times a month. There is nothing wrong or selfish about a parent putting themselves first for a little bit of self care! NEVER!

What are some of the things that you do, as a parent, that you really enjoy doing for yourself
Have you changed up activities over the years or do you stick to the same things

Let me know in the comments below!

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Online Bullying

When we think of bullying, typically our mind goes to the school yard and fists being thrown in some way shape or form. We think about meeting at the flag pole after class and or at the lunch hour and it being physical. That is not the case anymore. Fast forward to the times where we don’t even have to leave our own home to be bullied. We can do it right in our bedrooms sitting on out beds behind closed doors. What’s worse is that we can be bullied and have no idea what is even happening or even who is doing the bullying because of how anonymous the internet can be.

Online bullying is the 2020 version of the school yard fights. Online bullying can be one of the worst things to hit school aged kids due to the fact that it can happen anytime or any place. Online bullying can happen in your own home, on your mobile device, in school, on your social medias, or anything in between. The ability to create accounts on any social media immediately without having to verify yourself can be extremely hard to even track down who is doing the bullying. This can be anything from publishing a video which you see in many cases from parties of under aged teens drinking and making poor decisions or even being taken advantage of. To using some sort of blackmail to have someone do what they want them to do because they have information the victim might not want to have out in the public. Then it comes with publishing certain lies about a person across social medias for classmates to see and alienating folks with them even though they are normally not true. Remember, teens believe drama because they would rather not find out the truth.

The fact is, unless something goes to a criminal level and needs to get the authorities involved it can be extremely challenging to find out just who the bully is. Teens will be teens though and gossip does happen. There is occasions where people will essentially tell on themselves because they feel the need to gloat to their friends. However sometimes they also keep things under wraps or within their clique so that no one knows or the few that do know won’t say anything. The availability to create a profile without even having to use a profile photo can make things even worse. And then there is also the people who will use a profile photo but it will be of a celebrity or someone that you recognize where as the person being used is just being framed. One of the major issues also is that someone can essentially pretend to be another person while causing drama and bullying someone else. Maybe you are being bullied by the jock or cheerleader of the school however it is someone you may have had a fight with but they are pretending to be someone because they want to be anonymous.

Though it can be overwhelming if this happens to you I would suggest that you try not to engage with the person. Anything you say to this person can be twisted and essentially used against you for whatever reason. Avoid contact as their only reason for doing this is trying to bait you into saying things which can easily be changed. Even if you haven’t said anything against yourself someone can simply photo shop something and claim it was you saying it. If you find yourself in a situation like this. Block the account. I know that sounds stupid when they can make a bunch of accounts however if you just keep blocking accounts and cutting contact from everything eventually (one can hope and even if it seems like a long time away) they may become bored of this and move on from trying to harass you. Because let’s be honest, that is exactly what they are doing to you. And if it escalates or there becomes threats, or even if you feel uncomfortable and unsafe tell a parent or guardian or someone you trust like a teacher or something.

Education is key at young ages. Keeping that communication open from the time that they start using social medias and how to protect themselves. If you are able to help them with their profiles set it up so that they cannot be found, and all information that can be given is hidden until a person is accepted to view them. Especially with Facebook you have to make every profile photo set to private as when you upload it it will be public automatically. I know, this seems very strange but that is just how it works. You can also hide profiles from being able to be searched too. Make sure that if they are younger as well that you do have the option to see things, I know trust your child but that doesn’t mean creep their profiles. But let it be an option. And have your child also know that they can talk to you about anything. And if anything does happen let them know how to block someone from contacting them again and to never accept friends who they do not know. Once they accept it can be challenging to hide things from a person.

The internet can be scary. Especially since there is no face to a name a lot of the time when it comes to online bullying. The other thing is as a parent you really cant be relying on schools to educate teens and your ones about the dangers of meeting people online and talking to people they do not know. If you are not sure about a specific place I spot your child wants to use, do research also. They are multiple places you can find what a child using a specific server will be like and other reviews based on parents!

Have you recently had to deal with online bullying with your child?
Have you ever been effected by online bullying either now or when you were younger?

Let me know in the comments below, I would love to hear your stories regarding this!

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3 Things I Was Nervous About in my 1st Pregnancy

Having a baby is scary. Exciting. But also scary. Sometimes there are even things that can make you super nervous about too. A friend of mine mentioned that with each of her kids she became more and more nervous but about different things. One she was nervous about them having a cleft pallet. For me. I had basically 3 things that made me nervous about my 1st pregnancy and I am sure that there would be the same 3 for the next pregnancy that I also have too.

Breast feeding made me low key uncomfortable. I know. I know. It is a natural thing that happens to a woman’s body hen they give birth to their child to feed them and nourish them with their milk. For some reason breastfeeding made me uncomfortable. When I gave birth to my son I was in the hospital for 2 nights, came home for one, then I had gone back to the hospital, home and back to check up on him since he had jaundice. I was super nervous not to mention I was in Quebec and most of the nurses either did not fully understand English or they choose not to listen to English and spoke french. I was uncomfortable not just because it was a totally new experience but I was nervous regardless of there being next to no support. By the end of the week I had decided to do formula and my boyfriend was supportive of that also. It also is extremely forced and pressured to breastfeed as well. When you even mention formula you are kind of frowned upon as if you are doing the wrong thing for your child. With another baby would I consider breast feeding? Sure, I wouldn’t mind giving it another go. The other thing is that breastfeeding is not as easy as they make it look in the movies. You have to make sure your baby is latching properly, and that they are drinking the proper amount too. That made me paranoid my son was not drinking enough when in the hospital. Not to mention being in a different province my boyfriend would go home to sleep and be home with our animals so I was there alone when maybe with our next baby he will be there as we will be in Nova Scotia.

Gestational diabetes was something I was so worried about having partly because I love candy and sugar not pregnant so why wouldn’t I love it when I was! I was super nervous even though I was naive to the true risks of what it really can have happen. I would probably look more into this and hope that with future pregnancy that I don’t post a risk or at least minimize my risks of having it at all too. I remember feeling a bit of relief when I took the sugar drink and was able to find out about whether or not I had it. A part of me wants to look up more about it but I also feel like if I do at the same time I will probably be super

C-section was something that I think I was the most scared about. Crazy right. I don’t know I just felt like if I was to have a C-Section it would mean that I failed as a mom and was unable to give birth. I know it sounds totally insane to have this mindset but for some reason it was something that really crossed my mind though. The thing that made me feel better was when I talked to my doctor at the time she had stated that sometimes there is absolutely nothing you can do to avoid having a c-section. You can do everything right and it just comes to the point where you have to have one. There might be nothing you can do. Not to mention some woman’s bodies does not have the space to be able to birth a baby and they only thing they can do is have a c-section as the baby physically would not fit through the path it needed to go. I think this will probably make me feel nervous based on any pregnancy I have just because it really freaks me out the whole being awake but not feeling anything while they they open you up makes me nervous but we just will have to cross that bridge when it happens I suppose. No use stressing about it if it never happens either.

Next pregnancy as I write this I am currently a few weeks and not really thinking about delivery yet. Though I do randomly have the thoughts about previous pregnancy and what made me nervous. This time I am trying to be more aware of my weight and really trying to exercise or at the very least try not to gain the major amount of weight that I did before. It will be a bit difficult as I don’t want to really watch calories but just want to try to be mindful is all. I need to remember the huge myth that when you are pregnant you are not in fact eating for two. The baby is so small in the beginning that you can’t eat for two or you legit would be totally over eating and that will put the weight on QUICK! Another thing I want to do more especially where I have a kid already is to take more time for myself. Not push myself and to really take time to sleep well, if I am tired have a nap when I can. Take better care of myself for self care and things of that nature. I did not do that as much as I should have with my 1st and I want to that now especially with the stress of moving and things.

What are some things you were worried about during pregnancy? Or maybe
you were worried about it with your partner?
Did they change or stay the same with multiple pregnancy’s?

Let me know in the comments below!

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Sleep Training Sucks

Sleep training is not the bees knees so to speak. It is super challenging and the hardest part is listening to your little one crying because you aren’t in the same room as they are. We tried to start sleep training my son when he was becoming too big for his bassinet. The reason why we did this was that when he had his arms spread open he would have to bend them as his arm span was far to big now. The hardest part was making that decision. If you are like myself and my boyfriend, we had the bassinet right beside the bed since he was born. Making the decision did not come easy especially when they are so young when you see how small they look in the big empty crib. Have no fear, If we can do it anyone can!

Choosing a method can be challenging at best. You have the cry it out method which we a lot of us probably grew up on. This is where you put them in their crib and just let them cry it out. You make sure they have a dry bottom and are in no distress and you just let them cry cry cry til they fall asleep. They also have the pick up method where they cry and you reassure them everything is okay and put them back down. You typically let them cry if out for about 5 minutes, go check on them, let them cry it out for 10 minutes, and repeat extending the time you take to go in between reassuring them by 5 minutes. Then there is also the one where you sit in the same room as they are. And slowly as time passed or days I could say you you move the chair further and further away from the crib.

We chose the mix between the cry it out method and cuddling them to sleep. We thought this would be the best route as it didn’t seem as harsh as the cry it out method either. The hardest part as you can imagine would be to wait til you have let the amount of time pass that should pass before rushing in to the room. the fact is your little one is probably just fine they just have to make the adjustment to not being right beside you all of the time especially sleeping. It took a few days of this and he seemed to be on a good pattern. Since every baby is different too, it may take your baby a bit longer or less time than others. The important thing is consistency.

Like anything you decide to do with your baby as they begin to age and have some independence, including sleeping in their own room, it is not without struggles. It really is painstaking when you are trying to get them to sleep and you hear them crying. Though after you go in, for what feels like the millionth time and they are perfectly fine. Or they even have a dry diaper, or they have their soother there really is no need. The separation is the hardest part seeing your little bundle cry for you there knowing you aren’t in the room.

Some don’t that we learned pretty quickly were that you have to be dedicated to this. When my son was going through tough times when it came to sleeping we did everything. You can read more about that in this blog. This was extremely essential when it came to sleep training our son because when he was about 6 months of age to about a year old he would wake repeatedly throughout the night. This got so bad to one point I would go in at 2am and he wouldn’t go back to sleep until 4am. And so on and so forth multiple times. It was only after a few weeks of this we decided to let him cry it out when he was waking. We would check obviously to make sure he was dry, we knew he wasn’t hungry since he had been fine for the longest time over night, and we knew that he wasn’t too hot or too cold. This sucked because in the middle of the night all you can do is lay in bed and wait and see how it goes. we did this for 2 nights and suddenly he was starting to sleep better.

Though I don’t want to attribute this just to him sleeping either because we let him cry it out over night. Suddenly he went to one nap a day and that seems to be huge. Though it is tough when you only have a “break” in the middle of the day. He typically naps for anywhere from 1 hour 45 minutes to 2 hours and 30 minutes. I would much rather him sleep a smaller one nap instead of 2 small naps in the day and then barely sleeping at night. Him having one nap in the day time and then having slept super well at night is huge especially when thinking about having another baby around eventually too. The occasional time though we have had to go in and give him a soother if he has dropped it on the floor or if he cannot find it. Other than that though he does so well it is incredible how fast the change happened. Though going to one nap this soon was kind of a shock due to the fact that we know dropping to one nap a day normally happens a few months later and for us it was right around when he turned a year old!

Finding what method works for you can be hard and cause a lot of rifts in a relationship. I know with us it was tough not running in and trying to pick up our son when he was crying. Now that we have another baby on the way I am thankful that he sleeps as good as he does, next step would be to remove the soother from the situation however that will be happening after we get settled into our new home in the not so distant future (If we aren’t already there!).

What are some methods you experimented with when you were doing sleep training?
Was there anything that world right for your family, or some you absolutely hated?

Let me know in the comments below, I might need them with our next one!

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How We Picked My Son’s Name

First of all, I would like to start by saying picking the name of a human is probably one of the hardest things you will ever have to do when it comes to raising a child and deciding on having a family. You have to remember that this kid is STUCK essentially with this name until they are able to have the funds to rename themselves to something they would like. Which you hope doesn’t happen or it probably would feel like a huge slap in the face.

Since my boyfriend is French Canadian and I am English Canadian we had wanted one non-negotiable rule, That was whether we had a boy or a girl the name be bilingual. We wanted it to be a name that spelled in English and in French it was the exact same. How you pronounce it would be different, sure, but the spelling would basically be the same. So for example, David can be said both English and French, Just add an accent, But spelling is the same. Pierre would be another name but we both were not fans and Ill come to a reason why in a bit!

When naming a kid I have a very strict rule, well, many strict rules when you think about it! My boyfriend also follows this however I don’t think he does so quite as much as I do. One of the major rules I try to follow is that if I EVER knew someone by that name in my life I did not want to name my son that name. I will obviously follow that for another child however that is a big no-no. It is almost like the name is now tainted for me. If I knew someone names Shane in Elementary who did something completely dumb in school I do not want to name my kid that. All I will think of is that dumb thing that Shane did back in school whenever I see my own kid! And this goes with basically anyone I ever remembered, From crushes I liked, To ex’s, to kids in my school, or I played sports with. I really don’t care the reasoning I just know that I will never name my kid someone I knew or heard of growing up.

Another would be spelling, so many people out in the world try to spell their child’s name different. They take a popular name or something that people know and they change the spelling of it. Most time my stupidity cannot understand how to even pronounce the new name even though it looks completely different and said the exact same. We knew picking our child’s name that we did not want to mess with the spelling and then see how that goes for the rest of their lives. We wanted something simple. Easy to spell also. Something like Khai-Leigh, but pronounced Kylie, Or something like Airecka, but pronounced like Erica. We did not want our child to have to tell someone how to pronounce their name the entire time they are alive because it is spelled so wonky that the person trying to read it won’t get it.

Popular names are for sure off of the list. I know you know what I mean by popular names. That would be the names you had in your class growing up that they had to be referred to by their last initial. They were the Ashley’s, Melissa’s, and Sarah’s, the Ryan’s, Adam’s, and Matthew’s. We did not want our child to have a name that just about everyone on the planet had. Okay maybe that is an exaggeration but you know what I mean. Remember Son’s of Anarchy and when that came out on TV. How many people had children and named them Jaxon. I bet you I can name 3 at least right now. Whether it be from the show or not. Still. Since we wanted to have a name that was bilingual this would mean the Pierre, Olivier, Andre, and Sophie, and many more that we already knew people whit those names also. We wanted an original name not one that everyone could say “Oh Yeah, I know someone named that also”.

How we decided our son’s name was quite interesting. One night we were watching Netflix. Since I am big into subtitles now after being a changed woman, We were watching a french documentary on the mass shooting in France. I feel like it was called 13, Because it happened on the 13th of November but honestly I could be wrong. However they had people on their talking and discussing the events that took place. One of the survivors name’s was Vincent. We kind of looked at one another and had said together, What do you think about Vincent? And then in complete disbelief we couldn’t believe that we had actually agreed on a name that we both liked since we were having challenges finding a boy’s name that we both enjoyed. It was such a pleasant surprise that we had both found a name we liked and completely unexpected especially after browsing lists and lists with names we both didn’t agree on.

As for middle name (s), we chose one that was related to my father. Maybe with another boy we would choose one closer to my boyfriend’s family or a girl would probably share the same middle name as me. We don’t want them to have a lot of middle names, just one will do. However there are many reasons why people chose middle names as well. For us, It was more or less just family related.

As you can see that there is more to it than just choosing a name you like when deciding to have children. Not only that, But considering my bf and I would like to expand our family a 2nd and 3rd time in the near future I am sure we will be in the same boat again with names. Sometimes a name you will both like will show up where you least expect it! I would assume that we might revisit some of the names we previously liked but who knows, maybe we wont like them anymore! Or many Vincent will be old enough to help us decide too. Time will tell really. All I know is that regardless of how many kids we have, these are pretty strong rules that we both will probably follow.

If you have children, How did you decide on their name?
Comment below, I would love to hear your stories too!

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Preparing to move provinces with a 1 year old!

Preparing to move with any child can be crazy and hectic to say the least. I have only ever moved provinces with a dog and a cat and that alone was a bit much for me! However we did it and it worked fine. Now, moving with a baby or I should say toddler, I feel like there is a lot more we need to prepare for in order to make this a success.

We currently live in Quebec, Canada and will be moving back home to Halifax, Nova Scotia. The total driving time is about 14 or so hours however we all know that with a baby and animals that time will probably look more like 16 or so hours based on the amount of stops that you need to do for different things like fueling up, food, rest and stretch your legs as well as whatever else there is. I have only ever went on road trips when I was a child for bowling around the province of Nova Scotia so I really have nearly no idea what it would be like to move with a toddler. Oh yeah, and did I mention that I am also going to be about 5 months pregnant at this point too? Not to mention there is a lot of of different rules with traveling through different provinces especially with Covid restrictions as well too. Here is the plan and hopefully it does work out!

Food is something that as adults is super easy. If you are hungry all you need to do is simply stop at a fast food restaurant, and keep going. No need to stop and do whatever though we normally do for a few minutes due to the dog. The cat is typically fine for the drive which is okay. The dog we also have to stop for a little bit because if we don’t he might get sick due to being in the car so long which would also suck. Not to mention we have to do his business outside frequently also. For our son I was thinking about (And by thinking at this point I had already gotten) a few things to help with the car ride such as, a small cooler so that we can put some apple sauce and yogurt inside, as well as some small ice packs, and 2 small thermos. I was thinking that the day we leave to make the drive that I could also get up earlier so I can make some oatmeal to put in one thermos. This will be a good start for the day as he does love oatmeal. I also am looking for perhaps making some small pasta with some tomato sauce and putting it into a second thermos for his lunch. Supper will have to be more winged it though which shouldn’t be so hard to think about either. If he was older sure fast food would be maybe alright but since he is smaller I don’t want to have to rely on worrying about restaurants to get his foods though. As far as drinks he only has water right now so we don’t have to worry about that.

As far as entertainment goes, I have gotten a tablet holder for the back of the seat so that we can download some episodes of blues clues for my son since that is his top favorite show right now. This obviously would be nearly a last resort since we try to even limit his screen time by normally putting it on just an hour before bed since he does enjoy it! We also are planning on getting him some new toys just a few books and hand toys that he can enjoy while we drive. Nothing too crazy in terms of pieces because I really dont want to be picking up pieces along the way but something he can just fidget with. One is the lacing toys that he currently has a watermelon of and loves. The hardest part when we drive with my son is stop signs or stop lights as he always starts to fuss so we are hoping by moving on the highway he will do better.

We aim to also be driving early about 4-5am so we will get there in the evenings. And wont be really driving into the dark as that can be really hard. Plus with two of us we will be able to drive so that will be nice to flip if one of us is tired. The hope is that my son will sleep in the beginning since he normally would, and then once wakes up I can entertain him in the back since I will be there. the hope is that we can keep a pretty solid schedule and then it should be okay. He also has a nap as well in the afternoon. And about 7pm or so he should be asleep for the last leg of the drive. It really should be okay however it makes me extremely nervous since we never did this before. Thankfully this is our last move though since we did find our forever home so we wont need to do this anymore. Any family in Quebec will have to come see us in the future til our children are old enough that we can leave and they not ask when are we getting there every few moments!

Other than that I am pretty nervous about it however when we drive to Quebec city which is 2.5 hours away he did pretty good. My son is also old enough that we don’t need to have warming his bottles all the time so that is a good thing, not that he really has many now, we still give one in the morning and one before bed and if he drinks it he drinks it, if not no worries.

Have you ever traveled with a toddler?
What did you find helped with the drive?
Was it over 10 hours?

Let me know in the comments below! I would love to hear your experience!

– Stacey

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Normalize Formula Feeding Again

When I was growing up, It was so rare to have or know someone who breastfed their children. Ironically enough, It seemed there was a lot more stay at home moms who never worked also too. This was in the 90’s. To be fair, I don’t think I could name a single one of my friends who had siblings that I can remember ever having them breastfed. I don’t even remember if their mom’s pumped either. It was all about formula feeding at that time.

Fast forward to 2020, I had a child in that year and many of my friends have been having kids for a while before that. A lot of the times you hear about them breastfeeding. Which was almost unheard of when we were growing up. What changed? In the time when I was born to the time when I was having kids, something had to have changed to have such a shift in how we feed our children.

Before I go into my own opinion Chrissy Teigen said it best.
Here is the link to the original tweet and a screen shot for all you folks who don’t want to click away : https://twitter.com/chrissyteigen/status/1333097266710679552 (Not to mention she doesn’t even have Twitter anymore?

I totally understood this for sure. She is not wrong. Something has changed in the last however many years that has made breastfeeding seem to bee superior to formula feeding. There is no doubt that breastfeeding probably has a FEW MORE nutrients then a formula however it is 2020 and I am sure that there are so many advances that they basically are super similar also.

A friend of mine had a child 2 months before we had our son. Her and her husband decided to start with formula right from the beginning. She had mentioned when she gave birth in the hospital that they were a little bit judgey in the sense of “Oh you aren’t going to try breast feeding”. It was pressured in the very beginning which I also had noticed as well. This was a decision that her and her husband had decided on and they were completely pushed back on their decision by these little comments.

When I had given birth to our son, I wanted to try breastfeeding. I wanted to at least give it a go. Early on our son had a small heart beat issue which sorted itself out however we had to stay in the hospital for an extra day because of this. Then we came home for a day due to them kind of lying about us not leaving, And then we went back for 24 hours since he had a bit of jaundice and had to be under lights for 24 hours. We then went home for another day and went back to check up on him that he was doing well and his levels were fine. Now I know, There is so many more health issues that children and babies can have, But for me as a first time mom staying in the hospital alone (My boyfriend went home at night to sleep, stock up on our supplies, and be with our dog) it was a lot. After begin up every 3 hours and him feeling a bit helpless due to obviously not being to help a whole lot with feedings especially, we decided that on the weekend we would go to formula. It helped a lot and I think our sanity was saved a bit. When we went back to the hospital for the check up after his jaundice things, We again were met with a bit of eye rolls when mentioned we had switch to formula.

Being a new parent is stressful. To say the least. Are they fed enough? Are they clean and happy? Are they okay physically? When you have made a decision on whether or not you will breastfeed your baby and are met in the hospital with resistance and a bit of shaming as well it certainly does not make you feel very good. Especially if you and your spouse have thought and made this decision together only to hear it met with such rolling eyes and questions as to why you aren’t doing it.

I stopped breast feeding because it legit stressed me out. From my child being in the hospital more than expected I was worried he wasn’t drinking enough and that isn’t good. It was a lot of pressure just on me and not my boyfriend (not that I want him to have more pressure but you know what I mean). We stopped because I was running on fumes being up in the hospital alone for some time. Once we did this I think some stress did go away that is for sure.

People need to stop thinking “Breast is Best”. Sure it may be a bit more nutrients however there is no right or wrong way. A baby fed is the best. There are many different reasons why someone may not want to choose the breast feeding route. Maybe they are unable to produce enough and supplement with formula, Maybe they have to go back to work due to bills and are unable to breastfeed. They may choose to use formula because they had to use a surrogate and aren’t able to produce milk themselves. Or maybe, just maybe they choose formula because it suits their needs better.

For me, with baby number 2. I may decide to try breastfeeding again. If it wasn’t for me the first time maybe I would have learned a lot before the 2nd child and feel more confident in my abilities. Breastfeeding is hard and there is a lot of tricks to make it successful. I do know that if I decide to breastfeed and switch to formula though, I wont be as hard on myself for making the switch as I did this time. It felt like I was a bit of a failure by switching to formula when I said I would try the breast in the beginning. And if it doesn’t work a second time around I know that I can say I tried. Sometimes formula just better suits a lifestyle or family more than breastfeeding.

All I know for certain, is just because someone may breastfeed or formula feed shouldn’t make them any different. Mom’s who breastfeed shouldn’t look down on mom’s who formula feed and vice versa. Fed is Best, regardless of method.

Do you have kids? If so have you tried breast feeding or formula? Or both?

Let me know in the comments below!


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Pregnancy 8 week update

Since this is the first update of pregnancy and there will be a combined 8 weeks in the first one with following up every 4 weeks I figure I might as well do this since the first 8 weeks really can go either way. Also, Don’t forget that chances are you are reading this I am a bit over 8 weeks and in fact over 12 weeks. But where we are keeping this under wraps it will be released though a little bit after we make the announcement to the world about our second bundle of joy!

The first 4 weeks
They were kind of crazy. This was the first cycle we tried to get pregnant with number 2. I mentioned this in the announcement blog as well. I knew something was up this time. I dont know if it was because I was more in tune with what pregnancy was like or maybe it was just that I was legit pregnant last year too. I felt like my boobs were again bigger like I had gained some weight. It really is hard to explain. Before when this happened I figured it was due to weight gain and nothing more. This time I knew I wasn’t OVERLY eating that much and it seemed weird.
My shoulder also had this weird thing happen. I was doing an art stream and suddenly it started to hurt. I had to actually stop the stream about an hour in to painting it hurt that bad! It was so weird I even went to grab a shower and then took some Advil to see if i was going to be alright. I told my partner about it and the first thing he said was maybe we were pregnant! Since something happened strange with Vincent though I thought it was to do with my foot not my shoulder though.
As for food aversions or anything it still is far too early at this point. I did however cut up chicken for the slow cooker yesterday and it was weird smelling however I had no idea if it was in my head or not so I had to get the boyfriend to smell it when he came home. It smelled fine to him though! As for nausea though I don’t think I have felt anything yet as still 4 weeks is very early to really have a whole lot happening.
I do however feel more cramps though then I did before. Maybe because I JUST had my son about a year ago so my body is still in the mindset of pregnancy however I feel it more. I wouldn’t say painful or anything but annoying for sure. It does come and go that’s for sure. And I already have been starting to go to the bathroom through over night.. That is not something that I have really looked forward to with a future pregnancy.
I also am not very tired as of yet but if the opportunity comes up I don’t mind trying to squeeze in a nap though if need be!

OK, where do I start with weeks 4-8. It has been a roller coaster to say the least! Maybe I am just thankful that when I was pregnant with my son things were so easy going but this time around I feel like it is nearly the opposite.

I had a scare for spotting (prep for incoming too much information!) And booked an appointment with an on call doctor. My first actual doctors appointment is on May 3rd at about 10 weeks and 2 days and I felt this couldn’t wait. What happened was I had gone to the bathroom and strained a bit to go number 2 (I told you to prep!) When I wiped I had noticed an amount of spotting that looked scary to me as I had none with my son. Nothing like this anyways. I had gone to the appointment and she has said that it appears that I had the spotting from my cervix and not the baby which was a relief.

She had also booked me for an early ultrasound as well which i had gone to right after 7 weeks to check. Apparently a bottle of water is not enough so they had to do a vaginal ultrasound which is as awkward as it sounds. And they shown everything was okay. Or at least I assume it was because if it wasn’t they would have said something I would think.

For the most part I would say I still am a bit lucky. I am feeling way more tired then when I was pregnant with my son. I’m not sure if its because I am chasing him around or if it is because this pregnancy is different. I also have been having major food aversions. With my son I wanted to eat eat eat and this this baby sometimes thinking about certain foods makes me feel like I need to be sick. The nausea is a bit more then I thought it would be but as I mentioned before maybe it is because I had such a good first pregnancy that this one just seems like a lot more symptoms. I am thankful that I am not extremely sick or my son might be chilling watching Blues Clues while I lay on the couch. I do try to nap every chance I get when my boyfriend is home. Or if he has a long day I try to nap when my son naps and it does help.

Other than that I am super curious about if this baby will be another boy or if it will be a girl. I know having a girl would be great but another boy would also be great too. Healthy is best. I know boy boyfriend is hoping for a girl that is for sure!

Regardless we are happy to find out the gender and continue this parenthood journey in expanding out family! And even better, this baby will be born in Nova Scotia around my family!

– Stacey

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Sleep Struggles With a New Baby

It may be no surprise that babies do in fact have trouble sleeping. In fact, having a child basically means you wont be sleeping for a very very long time. You always hear horror stories about how babies don’t sleep when in reality when you first bring home your little bundle home they will probably be sleeping A LOT. That is because babies or specifically newborns up until they are most likely a few months old will sleep most of their time. You have to wake up to feed them every 3 or so hours, but still, they sleep a lot of the time none the less.

When my son was born, it was a huge adjustment to having to wake every few hours. I think more so for my boyfriend than myself, only because at about 9 months pregnant you are going to the bathroom at night so frequently that you are nearly up the same time anyways. I feel like I would have gone to sleep only to be awoken again with the urge to go or I would have peed my pants! Having a new born at home waking every 3 hours for a feeding was no different. It was also nice to have my boyfriend in the picture to be able to help with this. We started with him in a bassinet since it made things more convenient for us as we did have separate bedrooms. That way he could sleep right beside us and we didn’t have to worry about him being in his big crib for his little body. We figured why not get one also for when we have a 2nd and 3rd child we can hopefully have them in the same one while the younger kid(s) sleep. Plus it was obviously a safe space that the dog couldn’t give him kissed and that he could sleep on his own without being held.

My son was a great newborn! He would sleep really well, he wasn’t at all super fussy and he would routinely sleep longer periods as he aged a bit more. We were told by a lot of people just how lucky we were to have him since he was sleeping so great. As he aged to a few months old he still kept sleeping long periods without waking. It was pushing between 6-9 hours a night give or take. It didn’t even feel real at some points when we were sleeping wondering if things were okay.

Then everything started to change. We brought him to a six month appointment with his doctor. My boyfriend had asked why he is waking in the night, what could the possibility of this be? Our doctor asked if we give him a soother, which my boyfriend said yet, She told us to get rid of it or he will always wake up in the night. Well, we kind of panicked a little bit and started to try to not let him have his soother, which in turn was a headache because he was completely dependent on it. And is that so bad for a 6 month old to be like that? No. Not to mention we tried everything and anything to bring it back to how his sleeping habits before were.

We had a fish tank in his bedroom that we would turn on, this played some lullaby’s and whatever so he would be able to put himself to sleep. Well after he became more mobile and able to sit up and move around on his own with his army crawl he would press the buttons on his own to start it up. Now we just have it in his crib as a night light if we need it. We also thought and bought a white noise machine, When he was a baby even when we transitioned him from the bassinet to his crib we had an air conditioner on, maybe he wasn’t sleeping because he was so used to noise from that. We tried switching night lights, and sounds and types of pajamas and anything else we could think of. We just had to accept that he wasn’t going to be that big of a sleeper right now and that the sleep regression that everyone talks about is a real thing and nothing to be messed with.

Currently we put him to bed a bit different for naps and for bedtime. I know, before you say it “Well, that probably doesn’t help him Stacey”. Shove it. My boyfriend and I do this quite often racking our brains around ways to make it work and we just have to be consistence is all. He sleeps in a sleep sack to start. He used to have swaddles until he was able to pull his arms out and we moved onto sleep sacks. They are convenient and a great way to have your little lady or fella stay warm without worrying about blankets wrapped around them in a way they may be hurt. We also have a white noise machine. I had gotten this from Amazon one night when it clicked as to why it was so quiet. When he was in our room we had a humidifier going, just a small one on our dresser and maybe it was far to quiet for him. This also doubles as a nightlight since we used to have a puzzle lamp lit up red for him which we no longer use. It was far too bright and as he aged he would wake up and thing it was day time and he was ready to play. The noise machine light is far less invasive in terms of lighting goes. In the day time when he goes for his naps however I do not turn on the noise machine, Mind you this is my own paranoia that maybe the power would be out at bedtime and maybe he will be so used to noise that he wont sleep without it. We also did the cry it out method which I know we should have stuck with but now I just give him cuddles til he nearly falls asleep and place him in his crib.

As you know, you also have to put babies on their back when they go to sleep. This is so they don’t suffocate themselves when they are far too small to move their heads. As my son grew, he started to sleep more and more on his side, and now he seems to sleep well on his belly. It made us extremely nervous when he started to do that because well, you know why! However he was at the age where he can fully move his head if he wants to.

Though this may sound daunting, the hardest part is keeping the same structure. We always tweeked a few things in his routine but never all at once and it was always the same. We start to give him his last bottle before bed at around 6pm. About 620pm or so we give him some cereal with some formula with some fruit. We started doing this in case he wasn’t eating enough during the day and was fussing with his bottle that now he has a bit more substance before bed time. After that we give him a bath, alternating from a soak to a full clean every other day unless he has a really messy day. This is because we were worried he would have dry skin like I do. Then we get him all dressed up and ready for bed with a story or two (Or three with mom) and he is normally asleep by 7pm.

Fast forward and he just past a year old. Just before actually the past 2 weeks he had something click back! We never changed anything however there was a few nights when he would be getting up at 3am, and crying and crying and crying. We would cuddle, and as soon as he would get back in his crib the screaming and crying. We changed that. We resorted back to the cry it out method. We would make sure that he was changed and had a dry bum, and then we would let him cry it out. We would let him cry for 10 minutes. Go back and reassure him. Go back after 10 more minutes. There was one point he cried for nearly 15 minutes BUT after that he slept for so long. This happened a few nights and suddenly he is sleeping nearly the entire night! From approx 630-645pm til about 6-630am the following day! Occasionally we would have had to give him his soother but that seems to be about it!

There is light at the end of the tunnel! Do not give up new parents!

What have you found to be hard with a new born?
Was your little one’s sleep habits always good? or always bad? or mixed?

Let me know in the comments below!

– Stacey

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