I have a big secret to tell that I have, until now, kept to myself and my husband. I am infertile. Almost 2 years ago, my husband and I wanted to try for another baby. Our little girl was growing up and we thought it was a good time to start thinking about having another little one. So August 2010, I threw out my pack of birth control pills and we began our adventure into trying to get pregnant. I knew it would be some time before we would get pregnant as it doesn’t always happen right after coming off birth control. And 6 months later, we got a positive pregnancy test. I was swimming with joy. Immense joy. But March 25th 2011 we lost our little one in a way that I can only describe as traumatizing. It’s been a year and it still hurts as if it happened yesterday. We have been to countless doctors, taking multivitamins, exercising and short of dancing naked under the full moon and worshipping a fertility goddess, we still haven’t been able to get pregnant. I am frustrated, beyond frustrated. Our daughter was an “unexpected surprise” so I never thought that getting pregnant with the second one would be so hard. I came across another blogger whose article “When One isn’t Enough” who made me finally realize I wasn’t the only one. It’s definitely worth a read.
When I became pregnant with my daughter, I began to think of all the milestones she would go through, all the trials and tribulations my husband and I would experience, all the sweat, tears, and skinned knees. I thought about her eating solids, learning to say “mama”, learning how to crawl, walk, and run, but potty training never really crossed my mind. Perhaps it was the fact my mother had always said how easy I was to train (18 months and no accidents at night by 2) that I thought that of all the stuff she would need to learn, potty training would be a breeze. I thought wrong!
Around 18 months, I began looking online for tips and tidbits, when to start, what signs to look for, so on and so forth. My daughter didn’t really show any signs except needing to be in the washroom with me when I went. I allowed it, thinking to myself, “It’ll start this way and soon enough I’ll be diaper free!” From the things I read online, I was to allow her to pick out her own potty, underwear, toilet insert and stool. I started off with the potty. Princess pink and brand new, I thought she would love it. I put it in the bathroom and held her hand as I showed her. She stared blankly and looked up at me for some kind of direction. I explained that she was getting too big for diapers and soon she would go potty. She was having none of it. She picked up the potty, looked it over and then much to my chargin, placed it on her head and danced around the living room. Let’s put it this way, that was the most use that potty ever saw. I tried sitting her on it, and the wails and screams that came out of her would rival those of the shrieks from the damned damsel in distress in horror films. She was not ready. So I went to the book store and picked up potty books for girls and a potty book for me. I was realizing quickly that I was in over my head.
By age two, I was no closer to potty training my daughter than I was to winning the Pulitzer or an Oscar. I took her to buy her own underwear which she loved, but whenever I put them on her, she would use them the same as her diapers, go in them and demand I clean her. I was discouraged but I still thought 2 was still young enough to be wearing diapers and I was sure that she would get it soon. I was still looking for these supposed clues to her readiness and there were none. I gave potty training a break for a little while, hoping that my daughter would come to it on her own in her own time. I read online that pushing it can set you back and I was definitely not up for that. By 30 months I consulted her doctor. He laughed and said these words to me; “Potty training is like a fine wine, you can’t rush it.” Well thanks doc, I don’t even like wine. Shortly after that, we took our daughter once more on a shopping trip to pick out a toilet insert and stool. She refused the potty with gusto so maybe the toilet would work better. She sat on it but still would not go. Eventually she only wanted the stool, using the insert as a frisbee.
When her third birthday rolled around, I had enough of diapers. I was beginning to think I would be sending her off to university in diapers. I made the decision that I was purchasing Pull Ups. I was told by many people the pro’s and con’s of pull ups; the look and feel like underwear, but still diaper-like. Cheaper than diapers, but children would get confused. Regardless, they seemed to work. I explained that these were not diapers but the next step. Her daycare even agreed to let her wear them if she wore underwear on top. It seemed like it was going to finally work when we hit a streak of my daughter’s sheer stubborness. She flat out refused to use the potty to the point where she would hold it almost to the point of doctor visits. I even created a potty chart but that lost its appeal when we gave stickers instead of some toy or treat. I spoke with a friend of mine to share my frustrations, who also works as a psychologist. She told me the importance of what potty training means to children. To adults, its just a function we all do, to children, it is the first thing they can give their parents, and a struggle for independance. She suggested I tell my daughter that her poo was flower food and that it would nourish the flowers. It seemed to work. She still struggled with number 2, but she would occassionally go pee. I bought a toy potty for her dolls and that only turned out to be a waste of money.
Now of all the books, underwear, potties, etc that I have spent my hard earned money on to get her to go to the bathroom didn’t help me get any closer to my diaper free goal, so I picked up Hello Kitty antibacterial handwash at the store for her to use. I told her that she gets to use it after she uses the potty. Needless to say, that $2.67 bottle of commercialized, run of the mill, soap in a flashy bottle was enough to change my daughter’s mind. Since I bought it, she’s only had 2 accidents. We are starting underwear only next week at daycare and she continues to wear pull ups at night, but it looks as though she will be potty trained, hopefully, finger’s crossed by the summer. I have to say I have learned my lesson about making assumptions about parenting, because potty training has been one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.
If you are looking for a psychological crime thriller, then Jonathan Kellerman’s “Survival of the Fittest” is the book for you. A book with eugenically driven murders and Darwinism gone awry, Dr. Delaware and his partner Det. Milo Sturgis battle against diplomacy, bigots and red tape to try and bring the killer to justice. See an exerpt below and click here for the full review.
“Dr. Alex Delaware is hired to help his sister come to find some answers. The Dr. Delaware and detective Milo Sturgis are called to the crime scene of Irit Carmeli, the daughter of an Israeli diplomat. At first, the diplomat denies any political motive, but as the bodies begin piling up, the victims all have one thing in common.”
I am always looking for new fun, kid-friendly recipe ideas and I especially like ideas that can be used for a variety of events and festivities. I stumbled across a website called The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle and saw these cookies. In the shapes of Lego, these cookies can be used for birthday parties, BBQ’s, bake sales and baby showers. Using bright colours, these cookies really pop. For the recipe, please click here.
Sugarbelle has a variety of recipes and cookie ideas and also provides tutorials for all of us that may be baking-challenged. Personally, I cook better than I bake, but that doesn’t stop me from trying. My three year old can’t tell the difference between good cookies, and mommy’s mistake, half-burnt, baking mess up’s. Cookies are cookies for her and she is a Cookie Monster. I am definitely keeping tabs on this website, these cookie ideas are simply brilliant!
Draw the latch,
Sit by the fire and spin;
Take a cup,
And drink it up,
And call your neighbours in.
Yesterday, we took our daughter saw her first movie on the “Big Screen” Ever since we saw the previews for Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax, we had really wanted to take her to see it and since she loves Dr. Seuss, we thought this would be the best movie to take her to. We had been talking all week, imagining how her face would light up when she saw the theatre and then be bouncing off the wall once she first saw the arcade. I was more anticipating the exression of awe when she saw how big the screen was. We told her 2 days prior that we were going to the movie theatre and she was going to see a movie on a screen bigger than our entire home. We explained that a lot of people sat in a big dark room on chairs and ate popcorn and snacks and watched movies together. She begin to giggle and jump around everytime we mentioned it. When we arrived, her reaction was a little less than anticipated, but nonetheless adorable. She was so excited to hold her own snacks, pick out seats and repeatedly jumped out of her seat and looked at me and said, “Look how big the movie is Mom!”
Now while I’ve never read the book, and have been informed by many that the book is better, I have to say I really quite enjoyed what I saw. The Lorax is definitely a movie for the entire family with jokes for adults and children alike. The movie put forth a lot of great values such as sticking up for what you believe in, family, friends and taking care of the environment that are great for children to learn, but it also had some subtle undertones that adults could understand such as greed, capitalism, economy, and the pressure to succeed. These undertones for adults kept me glued to the screen unlike some children’s movies that leave me reaching for the Tylenol. Danny DeVito and Ed Helms do a great job as the Lorax and the Once-Ler and Betty White is a comedic genius as always.
Going to see the Lorax with my daughter and husband, was more than simply going to see a movie. I got to spend a lovely day on the weekend with my family. I got to experience first hand what is what like to go to the movies for the first time as a child. While I don’t remember my first movie theatre experience, and my daughter is unlikely to remember hers, I got to witness her excitement, anticipation, apprehension and pure joy and innocence. I was fortunate to see that day for what it remarkably was; a day I will never forget.
I love doing crafts with my daughter, and when I came across a fellow blogger’s post, Recycled Crayons with a St. Patrick’s Day Twist, I had to repost it. I think this is such a great craft idea. My daughter has so many broken crayons and repurposing them like this in such a fun in creative way is pure genius! Thank you Katie, this was awesome!
While perusing Pinterest, I stumbled across a great idea for keeping all those cute sayings that your little one’s say. You can take a plain recipe box or one that is decorated already, and with recipe cards, instead of your favourite recipes, put your child’s sayings. Separate them by child and be sure to write down the date and age. It’ll make you laugh, cry or smile, and better yet, always good ammo for when they are older!
I told myself at 11:59 December 31st 2011 that the year 2012 would be my year. 2010 left me bruised, 2011 almost left me broken, but 2012 was going to be my year and so far it has (knock on wood, cross your fingers, all that superstitious stuff.) I was promoted at work, I started this blog and was given the chance to talk and share stories with all you fine folk, and now I am training to run 5 & 10 kilometre races this year in Toronto!
I never considered myself a runner, in fact the mere thought of running left me almost dizzy. Why anyone would want to run and run and run for hours, pushing their very bodies to the brink was beyond me, until this year. Call it a Forrest Gump moment, but I just had to get up and run. From the moment my foot hit the pavement, my mind was clear. All I focused on was breathing, the pace and the road ahead of me. I wasn’t thinking about the pile of laundry waiting for me, or the stack of dishes. I wasn’t worried about clients or deadlines at work, all I needed to do was run. I came home elated, relaxed and blissful. I gave my hubby a kiss on the cheek, smiled and said “I think I like running.”
I have since joined a gym and my friend who ran a half marathon last year has graciously accepted to help train me. She is teaching me the proper technique (who knew that one foot in front of the other repeatedly wasn’t enough) and how to breathe properly (isn’t it simply inhale and exhale?) But there are other things she has shown me; Endurance, Determination and Persistence. Endurance for taking me that extra step, Determination to complete a race and Persistence to get up everyday and train. I thought I had all of these qualities simply from parenting, after all, isn’t persistence needed for potty training and bed time wars, endurance for raising a child from birth to forever and determination to parent our children right. I am learning now that there are many more correlations between running and parenting that I had previously thought and I feel like come 11:59 December 31st 2012, I will be a better parent (and runner) for it.
One of my favourite holiday’s is St Patrick’s Day. What started off as a university tradition of “Beer Quest” with my good friends, has now evolved into a fun holiday with the family. I found this recipe for Shamrock Toasties on the Disney Family Fun website and not only is it simple to make, but it is a healthy after school/daycare snack.
1 Bell Pepper
1 English Muffin
Shredded Cheddar Cheese
1) To start, slice 1 green bell pepper crosswise near the pointed end to get a small, three-leafed shamrock shape. (If the pepper has 4 leaves, you’ve got yourself a lucky clover!) Cut a small slice for the stem.
2) Toast half an English muffin, then top it with the shredded Cheddar and the pepper shamrock. Place the muffin on a tray, then broil it until the cheese is melted.