Category Archives: Parenthood

New Year’s Resolutions…

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This year, as in past years, I came up with a few New Year’s Resolutions for myself. But, I’ve since scratched my list and gathered some inspiration to guide me in 2017 instead.

On parenting…

“Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.” James Baldwin

“One thing I had learned from watching chimpanzees with their infants is that having a child should be fun.” Jane Goodall

On decluttering and becoming more of a minimalist (yes, I just watched this)…

“Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” William Morris

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” Leonardo da Vinci 

On showing love …

“Some think love can be measured by the amount of butterflies in their tummy. Others think love can be measured in bunches of flowers, or by using the words ‘for ever.’ But love can only truly be measured by actions. It can be a small thing, such as peeling an orange for a person you love because you know they don’t like doing it.” Marian Keyes

On being a good global citizen…

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” – Aesop

On taking care of my physical self…

“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” Michael Pollan (In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto)

 

What about you? Did you decide to make resolutions this year?

Last Minute Gift Idea: Pre-Loved Books

IMG_5647.JPGThere is something wonderfully personal about giving someone a book you’ve handpicked for them. So, this Christmas, with the help of Value Village, I selected some pre-loved books to give as gifts to my loved ones. Here are a few I chose which may help inspire you in your search…

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Snow-Day Hot Chocolate

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Snow and a hankering for hot chocolate go hand-in-hand. So, yesterday while we enjoyed looking out at the winter wonderland outside, Frankie and I made hot chocolate with candy-cane marshmallows. Thank goodness my mom was over because making anything with a toddler is always a bit bonkers.

*Not pictured: our chocolate covered hands, faces, hair, and walls and Frankie’s fountain of toddler tears from only being allowed one marshmallow.

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We dunked the marshmallows into semi-sweet chocolate melted in the microwave, dipped them into candy canes that I had crushed using our coffee grinder (mental note: I need a food processor), and put them on parchment-lined trays to dry. We made our hot chocolate to taste using roughly a 1:2 ratio of cocoa to sugar, mixed with a bit of cold milk, then topped up with hot milk. We stored leftover marshmallows in the freezer for when we have another hankering for hot chocolate, which will probably be later today, and every subsequent day until the marshmallows are gone.

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Links

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A few fun links to peruse this first weekend of December…December?! How’d that happen?

I’d love to tour these underwater art installations.

Such a pretty DIY Advent Calendar.

Ways to use the stress of the holidays to make your relationship stronger.

Would you eat dinner in the sky?

Beautiful ways to display art at home.

I definitely need a cat-tongue detangling brush (as soon as they’ve created it).

There was a National Pie Day and I missed it.

A simple design quiz to figure out your interior design personality. According to this, I’m “urban industrial”, but secretly I think I’m “transitional”.

This will make you think twice about parental shaming and fears.

A one-pot dinner that looks delicious and simple to make.

Some more fun reads here, here and here.

Happy Weekending!

4 Things That Have Surprised Me About Motherhood

Motherhood

So far, motherhood has surprised me at every turn. These surprises have been both good and bad…

Good Surprise: It can be unexpectedly funny, absurd even.

Since becoming a mom there have been times when things have become so precarious, ridiculous, or insurmountable that all I can do is laugh. In many situations, I only get the chance to laugh quietly to myself, like, when I’ve had a prolonged, unintentional, “nip-slip” while ordering coffee from an unsuspecting barista.

Bad Surprise: It can be tedious.

I’m not sure if this is the case for everyone, but I find that being a mom can be a tad (quite) tedious. I feel a twinge of guilt even writing that, but I suspect that I am not alone in finding it difficult to always match the mindfulness of children. Maintaining patience/sanity can be a challenge when your 2-year-old insists on walking slowly through EVERY SINGLE puddle on his way to the park.

Good Surprise: It can make you less judgmental.

I like to believe that I’m not an overly judgmental person, but, then again, maybe we all like to believe that about ourselves. Either way, I definitely feel that becoming a mother has made me less likely to judge others. I think this is because motherhood has made me guess, second-guess, and triple-guess myself. It’s hard not to feel humble when the only thing you’ve managed to figure out is that you’re not exactly sure what you’re doing. When you find that you have suddenly become the mom in the grocery store who is giving in to her screaming child, you reflect on times gone by when you may have passed a quick judgment or made an assumption about such a scene.

Good/Bad Surprise: It can make you more empathetic, but somehow less friendly.

Since having my first child, I have felt a deeper love and understanding for the people around me, strangers included. I find myself thinking a lot more about the fact that every person was somebody’s baby once. Remembering we were all babies makes it so much easier for me to see the sweetness and fragility in us all.

On the flip-side, having children can make you fiercely protective and this can sometimes mean being less friendly. Recently, my friend made me laugh when she described her system of keeping strangers at bay while riding the bus with her baby. She keeps her stroller covered at all times and wears headphones (with no music). This helps her avoid having people touch her baby, ask to hold her baby, or engage in a line of questioning about her baby. Apparently, before she started doing this, the frequency of all of these things happening was driving her bananas.

Mindfulness

If you’ve chosen to embark on the crazy-train called parenthood I’d love to know what has surprised you…

 

Packing For That Important Hospital Trip

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I’m 40+ weeks pregnant, so there really is nothing left for me to do, but wait around and write about things like what I have packed in my hospital bag. After having Frankie, I realized that packing a bag for the hospital to give birth is kind of like making sure you have a security blanket on hand. It brings you comfort and helps make you feel ready, but at the end of the day you don’t absolutely need it. As much as I pack, I’m likely going to wind up partially or fully naked in a room full of a few knowledgeable strangers and the people I’m closest to. Giving birth is a humbling experience and it makes you realize that during the most difficult and exciting moments in life all your really need are people by your side.

Having said all this, here are a few of the things I packed last time and this time that I think are useful. Most of these items are likely come in handy after your little bundle has arrived…

Clothing

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  • an old nightgown and robe
  • some warm socks and Uggs type shoes or slippers
  • an easy dress to put on when you’re ready to head home
  • a bikini top (in case you’re considering going into a birthing tub to have the baby)
  • old undies (not pictured for everyone’s benefit)

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Links

Le Marche, St. George

A few fun links …

A great picture of a mom just getting it done.

Wish I could have a cocktail served by this guy.

An ode to Facebook mum groups.

Avocado toast. Yes please.

The real colour of a dinosaur.

Very happy to hear that binge watching can be good for relationships.

I’m quite fond of the idea of healthy chocolate bars.

Looks like I’ll be hiking in jeans the next time I go for a walk near rattle-snakes. Which could quite possibly be never.

Happy Weekend!