Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Dr. Google and I were right! And early Father's Day too.

On Monday Maddy and I (and baba) went to the doctor to be sure her diagnosis was right (it was). But baba was worried and wanted confirmation and I was ok with that too. A virus, possibly Fifths, but without testing it can't be confirmed. And there is no reason to test, Maddy will be fine. We did get a humidifier for Maddy's room, to help her cough. Which worked last night. But also was NOT kind to the Maddster's hair-do. Not at all (see pic below).

Tonight we went to baba and dido's for a (very) early Father's Day dinner. Prime rib roast and cabbage rolls and potatoes and creamed spinach and broccoli and baked beans... and then brownies with cream cheese icing and cherries. And wow, it was waaaay too much food. But DAMN was it good! I meant to bring the Father's Day gifts with us (but that thing to remember fell out of my head, despite having a note written ON MY HAND). So when we got home I got the bag for Neil. In it were 2 cards - one from me and one from Maddy. And 3 t-shirts. One for Maddy, and 2 for Dada. And they were all Doctor Who inspired. I MAY have gotten one for myself too...

Neil's shirt says "Keep Calm and Don't Blink" with a TARDIS under Maddy's hand. Maddy's says "Five little Daleks went out to play... Over the hills and far away...". The other one for Dada says "I wear t-shirts now. T-shirts are cool." Mine has a silhouette of a screwdriver and says "Could use more sonic". You have to be a Doctor Who fan to get it, but I think Dada appreciated it. There MAY be something saved for Dada, for the REAL Father's Day.*

It was a glorious night! And now, there are dishes to do and lunches to make and dogs to walk and herbs to water and laundry t fold and laundry to do... Time to get at it!

* put in partially to see if Neil reads the blog... Shhhh! Don't tell him!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Dr. Google made his first diagnosis in our house

Maddy has been ill the last few days. A fever and listlessness, no appetite and so sleepy. The fever broke yesterday but I noticed a very mild rash on her upper back. Today she was still sleepy and fragile and the rash was still there. So, for the first time, I asked Dr. Google what was wrong. I actually typed in "child illness rash". And it spit back... something reasonable.

There was a reasonably written, coherent, non-panicky post about rashes and what it could mean. And I think what Maddy has is something called Roseola. It fits, the fever, mild upper respiratory illness, the rash (Maddy's is very light). No panic, no frantic doctor's office calls, no worry. Maddy is being a child and developing an immunity to a common illness. And she'll be fine and I'll be fine and we're all just fine.

My girl slept in until 730am, had a 2 hour nap and woke from it still tired, and went down early without a peep. She'll stay home from daycare one more day, just so she can get all the rest she needs. Plus, she's a little clingy and whiny which won't be easy for the daycare staff. And? Baba loves the time with her girl. But tomorrow it'll be back to daycare and there will likely be another transition period.

But, we made it most of the way through our first virus/real illness. WOO HOOOOOO!

And Maddy continues to grow and develop and amaze us. She pointed to juice boxes that I buy and said "app joo", she took a kleenex from the box and wiped her nose (not well, but wiped), she stacked blocks one on top of the other, she can name "e-mo" and "doo-ah". She sees a "bup" (pup aka a dog) or "ki-ee" (kitty) or "tuh-tuh" (turtle) on TV or a book or poster and names it, she's stringing some words together like "hai bup!".  She's just wonderful and amazing and awesome and my Maddy-girl.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Month Sixteen Letter

Dearest Maddy-girl,

Sixteen months ago today you came into our lives in a most dramatic way. After hours of waiting out you arrived, giving us the little blue finger and changing everything forever. And when I think about what you have accomplished in these last 16 months, it blows my mind. You sat, then ate solids, then crawled, then said a word, then walked. And all that time, you smiled and laughed and brought endless joy to our lives. Sixteen months... time is flying by at a speed which alarms me. It's almost JUNE. And you are sixteen months old. Already.

One month of daycare under our belts. And much of the last month? You have been sick. Today is one of your most sickest days, you have a fever and a cough. You stayed home from daycare today, being loved and cared for by baba and dido. I knew to expect illness once you started daycare, but it still breaks my heart to see you ill and listless. Although it is the only time you ever snuggle. Still not worth it, but at least you let us hold you and try to provide you whatever comfort we can. All day you rested, snuggled in baba's arms. Today when I came home, I didn't even take off my coat and ran to you. For the next nearly three hours you sat in my arms, head against my chest, and burned and burned. At 630 we gave you Advil and by 7 your fever was down and you stood and ate again. And now you are in bed, and hopefully will sleep well tonight. Tomorrow you will be home with baba again.

Your language has been blossoming this last month! Every day you use a new word, which amazes your dad and I. Shoe, tree, egg, pup, hi, bye, Elmo... And so many animal sounds now. Monkey, chicken, cow, sheep, horse... I think the part that was most unexpected is the words you learn that we aren't trying to teach you. Like Elmo. But, wow, you love your Elmo! I had baba go and buy an Elmo doll for you, just to watch your face light up when you see it. Tonight we gave you the baby Tickle Me Elmo doll! And? Nothing. Barely a blink. You were just too ill. Maybe tomorrow? But I know you love your Elmo, the other day we were in the grocery store and you leaned over in the cart and yelled "ELMO!". I looked around everywhere and couldn't see Elmo. Until I looked very closely at a book, and there he was. Elmo. You saw him! A very tiny him. At least we know your vision is good. But more than learning words, you are practicing speaking. Your babble and noises are sounding more and more like conversation. The ladies at daycare say you are on the cusp of conversation - you want to speak SO badly! I have the feeling that once you start, you are not going to stop...

My love, my baby girl, my Maddy. You are the most wonderful thing that has happened in my life and I love you so much. Happy 16 months! And here's to your renewed health and whatever the next month will bring.

Love always and forever,


Sunday, May 22, 2011


What WAS I thinking?! Of course typing that Maddy was on the mend meant that she got worse. Of course. She's snottier than ever and now has more of a chest rumble/cough that makes sleep a disrupted thing. And this morning she woke at 5am (UGH!) which meant she fell solidly asleep as we were driving home from the grocery store and that her nap was delayed. Those 15 minutes in the car seat? They turned Madds into a complete little hyper jumping bean. Well, except she crawled/chased the dogs more than she jumped. A little... dog chasing bean? Whatever she was, it was in an awesome non-napping mood. Finally at noon she fell asleep. And of course today is a day we had plans for 130, because she's always up by then. Ah well! The joys of being a mom to a toddler. One day it'll be trying to make plans for 130 and the effort will be getting her up for the first time that day, not from a nap.

 Last night Neil and I had a date night. DATE NIGHT! We went to a favorite restaurant, where we ate leisurely and chatted and lingered over drinks. Then we casually walked around Whyte ave and popped into a store here or there. Then went to a movie, holding hands in the back row. We had the chance, for the first time since September, to be a couple. Not parents, not with my parents. But just Neil and Wendy on a date. And it was GLORIOUS! We both feel more relaxed and more connected. One day Maddy will grow up, and once again it will just be Neil and I. Almost as important as being a team to raise Maddy is being a team that is still in love. Last night reaffirmed that we're still best friends and the stress of raising a toddler and maintaining a house and being slobbered on my 2 crazy dogs and working and life hasn't changed that a bit.

Well, time to get everything ready to be ready to head to an outdoor water park to enjoy the glorious sun and warmth (and get eaten alive by mosquitoes) once a Nunu wakes. Happy Sunday everyone!!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Friday night, muggy night

Another week down. And I realized that not only did Madds have a cold, she also was teething AND going through a growth spurt. No WONDER she was a grump-a-saur! But I think the spurt has sprung and now we're just dealing with Maddy being able to reach a new height in the house. She's hanging off the countertops now (literally) and reaching doorknobs (but not able to turn them. Yet.)  and grabbing for things off the table (knives are now placed at the top of plates). And her third molar (her 11th tooth) is completely out and molar 4 is almost finished emerging. Twelve teeth. Twelve bouts of teething. And now I hope we get a small break. For awhile. A looooong while. And then the cold, which is still leaving a wee bit of snot everywhere. It's been a crazy week.

Tonight I was laying on my back, on the living room floor. When I get Maddy on the ground, on her back, I grab her arms and pin them down and say "nom... nom... nom... NOM" and nibble her armpits or cheeks or neck. When Maddy sees me laying on my back? Maddy thinks PAYBACK! Tonight she came giggling over and crawled up my belly. But every inch she got closer to my face was another inch of slobber she left, trailing up my shirt. Teething is DROOLY.

Daycare is a simple transfer now. Maddy walks into the room and the little boys there say "Hi Maddy!" and she walks in and says "HAI!". Then wanders off to play. When it's time for me to go, I say bye and Maddy and she "blows" me a kiss (she kisses her hand, but doesn't quite get the release) and says "BAI" and continues to play. It's a simple and easy transfer. Dad gets the special part of the day - the part filled with Maddy's face lighting up with joy and her running over, arms extended, chanting "dadadadadadadad". May 31 I have to go to the doctor (annual physical, nothing alarming) and will pick up Maddy on my way home. I can't wait to get the happy part of the day!

This is the first long weekend of the summer and I initially thought about making outdoor plans, but the quantity of mosquitoes may keep us more indoors. I just can't imagine coating Madds in DEET. Yet. And dad had Friday off, so it's just Madds and I on Monday. I think we have plans to go to WEM with a friend. Mum needs a new bra! Tomorrow the garden goes in (yay!) and then Sunday we're getting together with friends. A bust weekend, filled with family and friends and Maddy. Can't ask for anything more.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

We kicked it

First daycare cold? Kicked to the CURB. Although mum and dad are still a little sick. But Madds is back to her normal self. We also had (more) teething this weekend and that seems to have passed too. Everything is better with a happy girl.

Otherwise life continues at break neck speed. Every night is busy with... everything. Cooking and cleaning and getting Maddy ready for daycare and just keeping life going. Soon there will be yard work too. This weekend, for the first time since Maddy was born, I just... I just wanted a day off. A day off from errands and house work and cleaning and laundry and keeping Maddy out of trouble. I just wanted to lay in bed, drink tea and read a book. I would have loved it if Maddy would have curled up with me and relaxed too... but I just wanted to stop for a day and be lazy. There was a part of me that felt so guilty about the way I felt. I never wanted to stop being Maddy's mom, but I just wanted to stop. As a mom you are never supposed to stop and never want to stop. And I wanted to stop. Did I? Of course not. We kept Maddy entertained and got bedding plants and get everything ready for the next day. But more than anything else, I wanted a day off.

In response to this, I have arranged for baba to come babysit and Neil and I are going on a date. Just him and I, for a few hours. I am also not telling Neil where the date is going to be. Surprise! We're also going to Calgary for a weekend in June, to help celebrate a friend's 40th birthday. Once again, it'll be a weekend without Maddy, and baba will get her fill with her baby girl. And maybe these breaks will give mum a wee chance to recharge.

Speaking of recharging... there is no chance for that tonight! Time to get to work - I am hoping to have an early bedtime tonight (ya right)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Testing, testing

Hello again! It's been awhile. Blogger was down for a bit and then the weekend was FULL. And there was illness in the house. But were ba-a-a-a-a-ck!

On Friday morning Maddy woke with a runny nose. We still went to daycare, but the moment we got there Maddy decided to be a grump. She fussed and fretted and wouldn't let me leave. At one point, she started to cry when I walked away. The cry bought people from the other room running in fear of a serious fall. Nope. Just my girl being her loud self! Baba picked her up and took her home for the rest of the day. The three of them had a great time! Saturday was filled with compost buying and errands and errands. Same with Sunday. Well, no more compost but some bedding plants to put in the composted soil.

But Saturday? Saturday Maddy was out of sorts. She was a walking, snotty grump-a-saur. But life with a snotty nose (that mama keeps wiping) can't be fun. And if her cold is anything like the version Neil and I have? Comes with an aching throat to boot. Although I am certain her throat is just fine, considering she spent much of today in an awesome mood and laughing and squealing.

There are challenges to being Maddy's mom. She is a very determined little girl and isn't scared to lose her mind if things don't go her way. Today at the mall we let her walk around, but only if she held mum's hand. Maddy was loving it, and squealing in joy, until the shiny floor caught her attention and she wanted nothing more than to crawl on the mall floor. And then stand up and run, free from any encumbrance (like mum's hand). And that is just not ok. So we'd pick her up and hold her, if she wouldn't listen. And then she'd wail and throw her body backwards in protest. We're, luckily, getting to be very good and dealing with that little maneuver and could catch her before she fell. But the looks we got... I am happy that I can say that I am confident enough in my mothering skills that the looks of horror on people's face as they watch my kiddo pitch a fit do not make me wish the floor would swallow me whole. So far. If anyone out there has raised an independent child and has any advice on how we respect her strength and confidence but still corral her enough that she doesn't hurt herself... Please share.

Maddy's baptism date has been planned. The Minister has agreed to perform the ceremony. And today we got the yes from the godparents! Now just to plan the menu, finalize the guest list... and we're good to go.

Despite having a cold and aching throat and wanting nothing more than to sleep... the dishes and making Maddy`s lunch and making my lunch and folding laundry and dusting and... well, all the stuff that a mom does must be done.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Update: Maddy's new tricks!

OK, we aren't sure it's daycare or would have happened anyway... but Maddy is blossoming! She's speaking so much more (or at least trying her hardest), she started singing on the weekend, she helped take her shirt off herself before her bath, she's answering more questions now, she's saying "hi", she's responding to our requests (like "Maddy, did you finish your milk?" and she went, found her milk and finished it). It's kind of frightening, how much and how fast it's all happening.

On Friday night we moved Maddy's bedtime. She has been going down at 7pm since she was 6 months old. At 15 months, it was time to make a change. Her bedtime is now 730pm, which means a lot more time with her in the evening, considering I get home at 445pm and have to make dinner, ready for 530pm. We eat, then I'd only have about 45 minutes with her. Now? Over an HOUR! And I have to say, I love the extra time! Before daycare Maddy would be acting tired by 6pm. Now, despite being more active than ever, she's completely alert and ready to go until at least 7pm!

Tonight from 630-7pm we sat with Maddy at the back landing. Maddy loves to crawl down the stairs to the landing when the dogs are outside and bark and wave to them. Tonight, even after the dogs were back in, we sat there and...

We waved

We reached for the door handle

We reached under the door

We told stories (Maddy was an enthralled audience)

We... um... well SHE... um...

And what a blast it was!

Friday, May 6, 2011

The most awesome daycare and most awesome present

I am so lucky and so happy that we got Maddy into the awesome daycare we got her in to. This morning it was a breeze taking Maddy in. We walked in (well, I walked and she was carried) and she was quite calm and once I put her down and she got into all the toys... she was just fine. She didn't even pay any attention to my frantic waving and and tearful gaze. She was having fun with Laura, reading a book! As I was hovering, enjoying a few seconds with my girl, one of the staff came in. The little boy - maybe around 4? 5? - from the older kid room noticed her come in and his face lit up. He called out to her and held his arms up for a hug and told her that he missed her. One evening away, and he missed her. And they thought that was normal! Laura's philosophy is that while the parents are at work, her job is to love the kids like they are her own. And it's so obvious she does.

Baba has been in serious (and grump-inducing) withdrawals from her loss of Maddy time. This morning baba came over to oversee a bunch of work being done at the house and then went to get Maddy. Baba and Maddy spent some time together this afternoon (having soft ice-cream). And when I got home there was a special surprise for me.

There was a pink bag with a smeared blue handprint on it. And my first every homemade Mother's Day card.

If you look closely, you can see a few blue and orange pencil marks on the bottom of the card.

I am a mom. I am a most amazing little girl's mom.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Day 2 of Daycare

Today I took Maddy for day 2 of daycare. And today? SO much harder. Maddy cried when we walked in there - she understood this is the room where she gets left. And even while I stayed there for 30 minutes, trying to reassure her, she would be happily playing then just stop and cry. Wail, like her little heart was breaking. Finally, I had to leave to make it to work. I walked out and Maddy started crying. And I had to keep walking. The awesome staff were quick to run over, pick Maddy up and distract her. They know what they are doing. But this first time mom? She's feeling a little lost.

I know it'll get better, I know it's the best thing for Maddy. But as my wise mom says, her head knows it's right but her heart feels like she's deserting our girl.

Today I called (again) to see how she was. The staff we reassuring and Maddy was doing fine, after a few tears this morning. When I called I asked about how Maddy was doing they called me "Maddy's mom". The years of being known as "Maddy's mom" has started. I thought it would feel foreign, like someone way more responsible than I am. But, when I heard it, I felt like it fits. There is a large part of me and my life devoted to being Maddy's mom. While it isn't my entire life, I love it being a large chunk of my life for now.

Maddy's outfit for her first day of daycare. And in case you are wondering, she's holding a tightly sealed empty jar of my anti-aging cream. She found it upstairs and has become a favorite thing to carry around.

No, I don't get it either.

Monday, May 2, 2011

I took her to daycare

This morning it was actually pretty easy to take Maddy to daycare. She was in a great mood, she had a good sleep, she loves going places! And I still love the daycare and the staff and the people there. Maddy was off and running and into everything. So much to explore! To taste! To throw! They even opened the sandbox (an indoor sandbox!) which Maddy tried to eat from. I was doing really good. Until I had to leave.Without Maddy. I said "bye bye" and she waved and blew kisses. And didn't even look at me. She was much too interested in everything else. Then I hugged her and kissed her and told her how much I love her. And cried a little... And she turned away and started playing. As I walked out, she started to follow me. I waved bye bye and one of the awesome staff grabbed her and took her back to the toys.

And I left her there.

Laura, the awesome Director, was so reassuring. Outgoing kids like Maddy do well at daycare. I know she'll thrive with new places to go, things to do, kids to interact with. She will not be the kid that gets bullied by others, she'll stand up for herself. She won't be like I was, as a child. The staff know what she can do and will work with her to learn new skills. She has her own little cubby with a hook and a place to put her shoes. And an art portfolio, where we can see how she improves in her drawing. She'll learn SO much from the other kids there. And the staff. We sometimes underestimate her skills and what she's capable of - we have never done this before!

This is the right thing to do. So why am I still crying?

* Edit to add - I called at 1115am. Maddy had just finished lunch and was about to get ready for her nap. And? She was doing just fine! She even had a few smiles when she went on her walk! And I got soooo many errands done and things around the house accomplished. I have 2 hours before Neil and I go pick Maddy up and all I need to do on my exhaustive list of things to do is mop the main floor. Aahhh... I think we'll both maybe make it through the day...