One Fish, Two Fish, Make It Stop

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Happy birthday, Dr. Seuss!

I have a complicated relationship with the good Dr. Most books I just love, and around these parts childhood just would not be complete without him. There are a few, though, that make me want to stick pins in my eyeballs. 

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish, for example. I cringe inside when that book gets pulled off the shelf by sticky little fingers at the end of the day.

At our house
we open cans.
We have to open
many cans.
And that is why
we have a Zans.

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March 2, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

Happiness, day... I've lost track

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So a couple of weeks ago I sent out an electronic plea for happiness and then suddenly it was answered- in the form of my weekly e-newsletter from Chatelaine magazine ("Making everyday... extraordinary"... I'd settle for just okay, but extraordinary sounds good, too).

Sometimes you just gotta love the old Information Superhighway. (Oh, I can't wait until the girls are older and I can refer to the internet in terrible, outdated terms just to make them cringe. "I don't know, Mads, maybe we should Ask Jeeves.").

Anyways. Chatelaine arrived promising 6 tips to "look younger and feel happier." Hells bells, sign me up.

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February 16, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

When your baby's not a baby anymore

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You don't really recognize it, that moment when your baby stops being a baby. It doesn't come with birthdays or milestones, with first steps or first words. It just seems to happen one morning, out of the blue. You sit across from her at the breakfast table, watch her flip her long bangs out of her eyes, hear her chatter on about the dream she's had, and realize that there has been some imperceptible shift and your baby is now a big girl.

And on that morning it's hard not to think about all the days gone by: The nights spent rocking, bouncing, pleading; the days spent crouched together over board books and tea parties. It's hard not to think about the times when she would sit perched on your hip, or fit perfectly on your lap, a cozy little bundle.

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February 13, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

Are you trying to drive me crazy?

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Well, project happy hit a bump on day 2 as I was forced to throw a minor hissy fit while out shopping with the girls. It wasn't my fault. It was pure sabotage.

I'd promised Mads a craft day so we headed out to the arts supply store to pick up a few essentials. We spent about half an hour searching out ribbon, buttons, sparkly pipe cleaners, princess-themed foam cut-outs, trying to get everything on our list before A finished off the last of her cheese bun and started on her pre-nap meltdown. We made a quick pit-stop for the requisite begging for a wind-up clapping seal or symbol-playing monkey by the register. I stayed strong. 

The woman in front of us at the only open till apparently chose yesterday to return and/or try to get retroactive rebates on everything she's ever purchased in her entire life. She had stacks of receipts, flyers, bags. It was ridiculous. A thought so too, because she started screaming after about 5 minutes of it. Ten minutes later I was about to join her. Lady, I will give you the $6 if we can just end this right now. 

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February 3, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

Happiness, day 1

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So day one of Project Happy coincided with the return of Mads' stomach flu. I'd guess that even Mary freaking Poppins herself would be hard-pressed to be joyful when knee-deep in vomit and diarrhea. Sorry for the visual.

But, it is day one, and that's far too soon for failure. So I popped Tinkerbell in the DVD player for Mads, set A up with a fistful of blueberries in the highchair and hid in a quiet-ish corner of the house for a few minutes of deep breathing. Apparently it's good for all sorts of things, none of which I can recall at the moment.

I Googled this, for the record: Sit, relax your shoulders, breathe out first to empty your lungs, pause for 2 seconds, breathe in through your nose for 5 seconds, hold, breathe out, repeat 10 - 15. Tip: Think of your diaphragm as the pump - that helped me.

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February 1, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

Who's happy?

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I'm not happy.

I mean, I'm not not happy. But I'm not really happy, either. I'm somewhere in between, adrift.

By all accounts I should be brimming, buzzing, bursting with joy. My marriage, my girls, my home, my job, my friends, my family - I am insanely, embarassingly blessed. I should be singing my gratitude from the rooftop. But I'm not.

It's not just that I'm too tired (I am) or that I'm too busy (I am) or that I'm still in post-ppd recovery mode. All of that is in the background: Clutter, noise. Somewhere along the way I think I've lost that thing, whatever it is, that welcomes happiness - finds it, holds it, lives it.

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January 31, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

Mommy's little hellion

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Look at that face. That is a baby who is up to no good. She knows it, I know it, she knows that I know it. And she couldn't care less.

This is A at her finest. The girl is hell on wheels, in a loveable sort of way.

Mads was a notoriously challenging baby, because she basically hated being a baby. A, on the other hand, loves being a baby. She loves the irritating, primary-coloured, squaking toys; she loves whole the sitting-up-in-the-crib-instead-of-sleeping routine; she loves eating the week-old M&Ms she finds hiding under the couch.

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January 28, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

The day from hell... and it's only 10am

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Dear today: You suck.

It actually started out okay. A was up a bit earlier than usual, I'm still fighting the tail end of a flu, but we rolled with it. Mads got up, hugs and kisses, how'd you sleep, here's some juice...everything is on track.

Then just before 9am, as I vacuumed up the wafts of dog hair that A just loves stuffing in her mouth, Mads started coughing. Cough, cough, vomit. Splash, all over the couch, the floor, me.

I plopped A in the jumperoo and turned back to Mads... Splash. And then again, only by the third time my truly terrible survival insincts kicked in and instead of just letting it hit the floor, I caught it. With my hands.

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January 26, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

I just can't stop

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I seem to have some sort of adult-onset ADD. Some sort of motherhood-inspired mania.

Even when the girls are occupied, or asleep, or out of the house all together, I can't ever just... stop. I'm always boiling bottles or steaming carrot sticks or poaching apples or emptying diaper bins or organazing Playmobil. Cleaning something, cooking something, writing something.

"Sit down," F tells me at the end of the day, when the dishes are done and the kids are in bed. And I do, and it feels amazing. For about 25 seconds. Then my mind wanders from whatever it is we're watching on TV and I think, "Is there bread for tomorrow's breakfast? Did I put the girls' laundry in the machine? Is the bottle still in the diaper bag? Did I empty the bathtub? What did I do with that fieldtrip form?"

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January 24, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

I love you forever

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"I love you more than anything in the whole world."

This from my Mads today, as we ran dodging fat raindrops back to the car.

"I love you too, baby girl."

"More than anything?"

"I could never love anything more than I love you," I told her, feeling her little hand in mine.

I didn't tell her that I love her so much that there are times when I can hardly find room for breath in my chest.

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January 16, 2011 | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | ↑ Back to Top

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"Having a two-year-old is like having a blender that you don't have the top for." ~Jerry Seinfeld.

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