Monthly Archives: January 2013

Student of The Month

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I am so very proud to announce that the Princess won Student of The Month for January for Outstanding Teamwork. I picked up Princess from school and I had noticed the teacher had put a blue paper in her bag. I just thought it was another craft. The Princess didn’t say anything about the award and when we got home, I checked her bag and found the award. She had the biggest smile on her face and I was cheering her and texted Hubby right away.

“Are you proud of me Mommy?” she asked.

“I’m so very very proud of you. This is amazing Princess!”

I hung it on the refrigerator and started telling everyone I knew. I am so happy that she won the award especially after the rocky start she had in September. She’s finally hitting her stride and getting comfortable with school. She’s letting that super personality shine through and helping her peers. I know I’ve said it already but I’m one proud Mama!

I’m a Little Snowman

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I’m A Little Snowman

From NurseryRhymes.org

I’m a little snowman short and fat,

Here is my scarf and here is my hat.

When I see the snow fall,

Here me shout

“All you children please come out!”

Moist Banana Bread

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I love banana bread and always freeze my bananas as they begin to brown so I have them on hand whenever I feel like baking.  I found this recipe online and I have tweaked it a little bit and it came out amazing.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 Tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/4 Tsp Salt
  • 1/2 Cup Butter, softened
  • 3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 Eggs, beaten
  • 2 1/3 Cups Mashed Bananas – approx 6 bananas
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 Tsp Nutmeg
  • 1 Tsp Baking Powder

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C).  Lightly grease 9×5 loaf pan.
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Whisk until mixed.
  3. In a separate bowl, cream butter and sugar.  Stir in beaten eggs and mashed bananas until blended.
  4. Stir in banana mixture into flour mixture slowly and stir until just moistened.  Be careful not to over mix the batter or the loaf will turn out heavy.  Pour batter into loaf pan.
  5. Bake for 60-65 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.  Let bread cool for 10 minutes and then transfer to wire rack.
  6. For a little sweet crunch, mix 1 tbsp of water to 1 tbsp of brown sugar and brush on top while the loaf is cooling.
  7. Slice and enjoy!

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“Mommy, Where Do Babies Come From?”

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228149Oh yes, that bomb dropped last week.  I guess I had it coming now that we are pregnant, but I didn’t think at 4, she would be asking me.  We were getting ready for school and she came up to me with the most curious look on her face.

“Mommy, where do babies come from?” she asked.  I stood there for a good 5 minutes trying to find the most age appropriate answer.

“Umm, where do you think they come from?” I asked using the movie ‘Knocked Up’ as my saving grace.

“I think when you eat food it sits in your stomach until it grows into a baby,” she answered seriously.

“Yup.”  And that was the end of the discussion.  I wish I had something much better to offer at the time, but I was unprepared and needed time to figure out what, if anything I wanted to provide given her age.

I started researching how was the best way, if it was appropriate to tell them at a young age and what repercussions to expect.  From what I gathered, any age is appropriate as long as the material is age appropriate and straightforward.  A study showed that children who were given information from an early age and information that continued on throughout youth and puberty were less likely to have unprotected sex, teen pregnancy and STD’s.  That was enough to convince me to give her the facts.  And besides, I don’t want to be that mother (or grandmother) on Teen Mom or 16 and Pregnant.  Nooo thank you.  I ran into my neighbour, who is also the blogger from Mafa’s World, she suggested ‘It’s Not The Stork’ by Robie H. Harris.   So off I went to my local book store and kindly approached the sales rep.

“Um excuse me, do you have any books on sex,” I whispered, “that are appropriate for 4 year olds?”

“Yes, sure, follow me,” she replied and led me to the children’s section.  She said that most parent decide what books they want and how much they edit.  She handed me a book about periods.

“Um, no sorry, for 4 year olds, not 14 year olds.  I need a book about where babies come from.”

She handed me ‘It’s Not The Stork’ as well as ‘A New Baby Is Coming! A Guide For A Big Brother Or Sister’ by Emily Menendez-Aponte.  I paid for the books and went on my way.

I was so nervous picking her up from school that I must have dropped the bag about 6 times.  Flashbacks of my ‘sex talk’ came flooding back.  I was maybe 12 years old and I was in the living room watching the original version of Degrassi Junior High, the episode where Spike announces she’s pregnant.  My mother whom was sitting in the kitchen saw what was on the TV.

“Do you have any questions?” she yelled.

And as quickly as she asked, I quickly replied, “Nope!”

And that was the extent of my sex talk in my preteens.  She always had warned me about boys and their intentions, STD’s and pregnancy but that was definitely the moment that stuck out in my head.

So when the Princess and I got home, I read ‘A New Baby is Coming!’  I really liked this book.  It didn’t give specifics but openly discussed that sometimes children have feelings of sadness, or anger and that it was alright to ask Mommy and Daddy about it.  We then read ‘It’s Not The Stork’ which gives a much more detailed account and cartoon pictures of private parts and how exactly babies are made. S-E-X.  When I said the three-letter word, the Princess just looked at me with this quasi confused and disgusted look on her face.  I didn’t give her the how to’s, but she was pretty much content with what I told her.  But when Daddy came home, she felt the need to inform him also.

After the Princess went to bed, Hubby flipped through the books and just said he was ‘not ready’ for this conversation yet.  I edited some of the information as she’s still only 4, but at least we have these materials available for future questions.  So far, she is content with what she knows.

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“You’re a Powerful Woman”

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Today I received a compliment, all the while gracious and extremely flattering, I am not sure that I deserve such a compliment.  There is one mother whose son is in the same class as the Princess and her and I have grown to know one another over the last few months.  Today, we were speaking and she said this;

“You’re such a powerful woman.”

I said thank you very much and was left flabbergasted.  The bell soon rang and we parted ways.  On the ride to work, I kept thinking in my head “Am I a powerful woman?  What exactly classifies a powerful woman?”  I perceive women who have persevered, sacrificed and conquered as powerful.  I have been very fortunate to have known many powerful women in my life.

My mother’s mother was one of the most influential people in my life.  A war bride during the second world war, she moved to a country and started a family.  That alone speaks volumes to me.  She was a stay at home wife and mother to 5 children when my grandfather died when my mother was only 5 from a heart attack.  She then had to find the strength and courage to raise 5 children single-handedly.  She would later retire, own her own home and at one point or another had 6 of her 12 grandchildren live with her.  She bought me my first dictionary, quizzed me on trivia and really instilled the love of reading I have now.  I was only 14 years old when she died, but her legacy will have a lasting effect on me for the rest of my life.

Next was my father’s mother.  A dutiful farm wife, she raised 11 children.  She cooked, cleaned, and worked in the field up until she gave birth to my father.  She never complained about the work load and even sacrificed her own education so her brother could go to school.   Family was paramount to her and for that I have an enormous amount of respect for her.  And she loved my grandfather.  At every meal, she always ate using the utensils my grandfather brought home from basic training in WWII.   I will always remember her rocking in her rocking chair, staring out the window, watching my grandfather work outside.

These women demonstrate and illustrate strength to me that I one day hope to possess.  While I may have been told I was a powerful woman today, I feel like I have big shoes to fill.  I do greatly appreciate the compliment.

Green Bathroom Cleaner

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I have to admit since becoming pregnant I’ve left the cleaning of our bathroom to Hubby as the smell from most bathroom and shower cleaners made me gag.  I’m a little anal retentive when it comes to cleaning so after my daily Pinterest tour, I found a way to clean my bathroom using stuff you find in your cupboards.  Using nothing but baking soda and vinegar I’m able to clean my bathtub and shower without the harsh chemicals and to my standards LOL.

DIRECTIONS

  • Dampen your bathtub and shower with a bit of warm water.
  • Sprinkle baking soda over the area you want to clean and let sit for 5 minutes.
  • Using a scrubber, scour the baking soda all over.  Then pour the vinegar over, let foam and fizzle for 10 minutes.
  • Scrub and then rinse.

I love this as it did the job, removed the soap scum and water stains and didn’t enrage my gag reflex.

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Pregnancy Gender Myths

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I haven’t had any telltale feeling as to what the sex of this baby is.  In the beginning, I felt it was a girl, but with how different I feel this time around, I’m not sure.  With the Princess I could have sworn I was having a boy but everyone around me said “No, you are carrying high so it’s a girl.”  Turns out they were right.  The Princess would like our Rainbow to be a Prince, but I’ve been getting mixed reviews from people.  Some say boy, others say girl.  In the beginning of February, I will finally know.

We’ve all heard them.  The old wives tales people tell to determine prior to an ultrasound or the big day what the sex of the child will be.  Science has debunked a majority of them, but it’s for fun. So here are a few;

  • How you carry.  If you are carrying high, then it’s a girl.  If you carry low, then it’s a boy.
  • Heartbeats.  If the heartbeat is higher than 140, it’s a girl.  If it is lower than 140, it’s a boy.
  • Cravings.  People say that if you are craving something sweet, it’s a girl, but if you are craving sour, then it’s a boy.  Maybe there is something behind “sugar and spice, and everything nice.”
  • Weight Gain.  If your Hubby gains weight, then it’s a girl, but if he doesn’t gain a pound, then it’s a boy.
  • Your Face.  Apparently, if your face becomes round and rosy, then you are carrying a girl.  If not, it’s a boy.
  • Acne.  If you develop acne during pregnancy, then it’s a girl.  Some suggest it’s from extra female hormones.  If not, then obviously, it’s a boy!

So according to these myths I will be having a boy, so in a few weeks I will be able to say whether or not they are right.  A study was done, 71% of the time, mother’s guessed correctly the sex of their unborn baby.  While I’m not sure, I will go with my original feeling and say a girl.

How to Beat a Cold While Pregnant

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Hey everyone!  I have been posting pretty sparsely lately and it is because since Christmas, I have been battling a nasty chest and sinus cold and it seems to be lingering like an old boyfriend.  Apparently while visiting family and friends, Christmas joy wasn’t the only thing I caught.  I’ve been to the doctor and he basically confirmed what I already knew; I’m pregnant and there isn’t much in the way of medication that I can take to ease your symptoms.  So not only can I not take anything, but my immune system is on hiatus as well.  Pregnant women are more susceptible to colds and viruses as their immune system has taken a back seat as not to identify the baby as a foreign body.  I’ve been treating this cold naturally and here are a few things that you can do while pregnant to ease your symptoms.

  1. Ginger Root.  Not only will this help ease upset stomach (and morning sickness) but chewing on ginger root will release enzymes that will help suppress your cough.
  2. Halls.  My doctor told me these are ok as long as they are the menthol ones and do not contain medication.  Try to limit your intake, but the menthol will open nasal passages and help you breathe as well as soothe your sore throat.
  3. Hot Steam.  Boil water and pour it in a bowl.  Then place a towel over your head and breathe it in.  The heat will help break up any congestion you may have.
  4. Rest.  Nothing can help you feel better than catching some Zz’s.  Your body is already exhausted from growing a baby and battling a cold will only make you more tired.  So feel free to sleep when you can.
  5. See your doctor.  Seems pretty obvious but when pregnant and sick, it’s always best to see your doctor.  They’ll know what’s the next best move.

 

Image c/o clevelandleader.com

Image c/o clevelandleader.com

I’m not a doctor, so before following these tips, always check with your healthcare provider first!

January

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JANUARY

By Patricia Scarry

January starts the brand-new year with snow for sledding,

skiing, snowmen.  There are icy ponds for skating on.

Mittens drip,

And there’s cocoa to sip.

This month there’s a nice thing to do:

Throw crumbs to the birds! They’re hungry too!