Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Random picture mayhem

It's definitely bedtime in this household, but I finally downloaded some pics of the Nunu and I thought I'd share some random fun ones! This is no editing, minimal commentary, fast n' dirty picture sharing. Ready? Set? GO!

 Showing off her eyelashes

 We let her pick her own snacks from the fridge. Sometimes she chooses... oddly

 "This is not the apple I was expecting..."

 Learning to "yog". 

 The reason we have so few pics. 

 She sees the camera? 

 And she has to come look closely.

 And press the buttons.

 And look in the screen on the side.

  I saved you from the sight of the blaring flash... 

 More yog! It's getting better... 

 Our newest piece of living room furniture, but it's a place for snacks and colouring. 

Taken tonight, as she insisted "PEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESE!" to be let into her crib to play. There was stuffies and bouncing and flopping and many, many giggles by everyone. Well, except the dogs who pouted outside her door, as they are not yet allowed in her room. Poor pups...  

And with that? Good night! 

Monday, August 29, 2011

And we're back... to daycare

This morning was Maddy's first day back at daycare. I took the day off, to ease her into it. To let her slowly get used to daycare again and be there in case there was an issue. Of course, because I was worried, there was no issue at all. Maddy walked it and her face lit up. She was so exited! She ran around and played with toys and hopped on top of a rocking horse and picked up cars and sheep and horses and her face lit up at seeing her friends again (AX-EE! EEEREEK!). I still stayed for 30 minutes, but mostly watched her play. When I left she was busy throwing herself at a pillow-toy and bouncing off in glee. Not really sure she noticed I walked out despite my rather loud and mournful goodbyes and blown kisses. The rest of the day has been spent doing errands (and spending so much money). Then this afternoon has been spent doing house-stuffs. Although due to poor planning on my part, I am not able to finish and will have to do more after Maddy goes to bed.

This weekend was a busy one. Saturday my goddaughter and I took Maddy to the zoo. Maddy? She was a bit of a disaster. She wailed and screamed and lost her MARBLES because we wouldn't let her into to fenced off pen of animals. And then when she wasn't able to walk through the fence around the merry go round... Oy vey. Very loud and very unhappy and very very snotty. There is some renewed teething action, and I think that played a role. But the zoo? NOT a success. Then that night we went out with friends. We left Maddy at their place with a babysitter and then went out for food and drink. And then, at about 1030pm, we went back to their house and woke our sleeping child and carried her home. She was quiet most of the trip. I think she was a little alarmed by the darkness around. Near the house she spoke, told us about the "car" beside us. But we brought her home and laid her back down and she rolled over and went right back to sleep. And then slept in until 730am! The thing I worried about, the evening out, was a great success. The thing that I thought would be so much fun? A bit of a wreck.

I think Maddy is on the boundary between stroller and walking. Stroller is easier for us to control her. Walking is easier for her, to have the freedom to explore. If only she understood to stay close, or to not run on streets, or that some fences can't be breached, then it would be perfect. I think we're getting closer to that, but we're not quite there yet. Next year, though, I have so many plans for the zoo and Fort Ed and John Jansen Nature Centre, and walking on the trails in the river valley and playing in the splash parks... Although this summer has been pretty freaking awesome too. `

It`s all such a delicate balance between worrying and complacency, between thinking ahead and living in the moment, from planning too much and too little. These moments, right now, are for me and Neil. They won`t be remembered by Maddy at all. She won`t remember how her face lit up when she went back to daycare, or meeting Elmo, or running through the grass. We will, and we love every second of this time. But next year, next year will be about both our memories and maybe a few of Maddy's. The year after it`ll be about Maddy`s memories... But whatever she remembers (if she`s like daddy) or forgets (if she`s like me) we are trying our best to provide love and support and give Maddy the tools to be confident in life.

And one day Maddy will be my age and I`ll want to sit down with her, and ask her about her childhood. What does she remember? Compare that to what do I remember? What shaped her and made her whoever she becomes? Until then, we're going to do our best and love her for the everything amazing that she is.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Month Nineteen Letter

Hello my Maddy-licious,

Happy birth... er... annivers... month? Happy month day, Maddy! Today you nineteen months old. Careening towards two years at break-neck speed.

Today is a very special day, other than the same day as your birth. Today, my girl, you PEED IN THE POTTY. This morning your diaper was totally dry when I went to get you so I thought why not try the potty... I sat you down and we pulled up the IKEA catalogue and starting naming things. And then? And THEN? I heard the sound of pee hitting the pink plastic bowl. I CHEERED. I mean loud, excited, bouncing, screaming cheering. The dogs cowered in fear, but you loved it. You announced to me "Pee. Pot-tee." And then you flushed. And I danced and sang and praised you like mad. Then we put on your diaper and pants. And then I may have taken a picture of the potty *blush* because... well... it seemed like the right thing to do, to record a milestone. Then, since it's the potty on the floor, I had to dump and clean out the potty (which is gonna be horrible when we start #2... *shudder*). I am so so so proud of you, Maddy. I know you had no control over the decision to let the pee go. But I think you know, now, that peeing in the potty is a good thing to do. And maybe we'll start small - a pee in the morning. And then maybe a pee before bed? Oh argh... I have no clue what to do next.... Time to research.

Otherwise you are awesome. Awesome! So verbal and so independent and so funny and so adorable. You are my awesome toddler girl. Yesterday you went for your second hair cut (mostly a bang trim) so you're looking quite dapper. Daycare has been closed for the last 2 weeks, so you and baba have been hanging out together and having so much fun doing errands and playing. On Wednesday you even came in to my work, to meet the people here and so I could show you off. Mostly, it was so I could see you for a bit during the day. To watch you run with abandon through the halls and look into offices and name those things you could name.

There was a time when you were grumpy if you had to be home all day but now we just have to take you upstairs to the boxes of books and you are so happy! You still love books so much. You love to look at the pictures and hear the sounds of the words and point out and name everything that you can. Both you dad and I love books too, so I think this fascination is genetic. But it makes me so happy to see your face light up at any "book-a book-a book-a".

Tomorrow we're trying something new. We're going to take you to a friend's place and the babysitter will put you down, in the pack and play. And then we're going out with adults. To be couples and friends and not-parents. Once the adulting is over, then we'll take you home and hopefully you'll transition well with that sleep disruption. If not? It's dad's morning to wake up with you *grin*. But I am still going to be a crazy woman and write out detailed instructions about what we do to lay you down (down to naming "tree" as we brush your teeth and you look out the window) and bring your sleep sack and Odg and pjs and milk and other toys... we'll have it all. Don't tell your dad that I wrote this all down in detail, he'll mock me, but I have been so protective with your sleep schedule, after all the hassle we went through the first 6 months. This is a test... this is only a test. We'll see how it goes.

Happy nineteen months, my girl. My life is now divided into LBM (life before maddy) and LAM (life after maddy). There was over 35 years of LBM and only 19 months of LAM. But these 19 months have been the most amazing and fun and meaningful months of my world. LAM is when it all really started for me, when those blurry ideas of what my life is meant to be came clear. I was meant to be your mom, and see the world again with you, through your eyes. It's made me see myself more clearly, it's made me more complete.

I love you so much Maddy. Happy 19th month-day, my girl.

Love always and forever,


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

New stuff she does

 This is, by no means, an exhaustive list...

  • Insists on going into the fridge to pick out her own food. The other day she tried to pull out the spaghetti squash, calling it 'nana. Or this morning she, again, took a huge bite of the orange before we could peel it. Sometimes, like a teenager, she just stands there staring at everything and I am certain, thinking "There is nothing good to eat here!" as we get extra air conditioning in the kitchen. 
  • Plays house now. But instead of dolls, her CAR! lives in the house. They go into the front door, flush the toilet, lay on the bed, go "zoom, zoom" everywhere. Book and cars and everything in the show In the Night Garden and Elmo and Odg are all still things that bring joy.
  • Odg. The other day she corrected us, and called him Roger. Although we still call him Odg, because, we'll... he's just Odg now. 
  • She's taken to crawling around and barking or meowing, pretending to be an animal. This first time Neil and I saw it, our jaws dropped. Pretend! So we'll often be found barking/meowing right beside her. 
  • Tantrums. Not new, but every day Maddy decides what it is she wants (and what she doesn't). I am certain she can't understand our "arbitrary" decisions preventing her from doing her thing. Like reach for a knife on the counter. Or climb on top of her (rolling) bus toy, to see out the window. Or run onto the street to explore, instead of staying on the sidewalk. And we're not yet at the point where she can understand why we say no. Just that no is DEVASTATING and she can't believe we are SO MEAN. Loudly can't believe. 
  • The return of teething? Adding to her 12 teeth? Can that also be a factor in the increase in tantrums? Or is it just toddlerhood? She's a snotty mess, teething or not. Although we can now more easily wipe her nose if we sing and make funny sounds as we're doing it. Even in public. And we do.  
Everyday with Maddy is awesome and fun and challenging and exhausting. And I can't imagine a life any other way. Does it make for fascinating reading? That I am not sure anymore. Maybe I won't be posting as much anymore, maybe there will be a new flurry of writing. Time will tell. But, in the most repetitive blog ever, it's all awesome right now. 

Thursday, August 18, 2011


On Saturday Maddy, Neil and I joined 2 other families at Telus World of Science, for the Sesame Street exhibit. Which featured a visit by Elmo. In person. Really tall, needed help to walk, kind of silent ELMO. The kids loved it!

Featured, left to right, are Maddy, Elmo, Kiran and Caleb*.

Elmo: Three toddlers? At once? *blink, blink*

Kiran: ELMO! Hi Elmo! I love you Elmo.

Caleb: OK, here's my most adorable smile.

Caleb: And this is my best side!

Caleb: Here is my serious look, on my best side. Whatcha think?

Maddy: I am blowing this pop stand.

 Maddy: They can be awesome, I am done.

 Elmo: Was it something I said?

* Pictures of other people's kids posted with permission

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Well hello there stranger...

Hi! It's me! Remember me? No...? I have a kid and stuff.

Things are still good. I went through a time when I wasn't feeling quite as good - just ignoring responsibilities. And they don't go away, even if you close your eyes really hard. In fact, when left alone they multiply. Like rabbits. But less hairy and cute. And less bouncing, more weight around your neck pulling you down. So, like any irrational person, I closed my eyes harder AND covered them with my hands. You can guess how well that worked, now that I am the mom. So the last few days it's been less ignoring and more doing and I am feeling less weighted down. Have I even caught up? Hells no. But I see the daily stuff being nearly where I should be and the extra projects are at least back on the radar.

One thing I didn't ignore? In fact, I increased my time doing? Tickling Maddy until she turned red from giggling. And playing "Ah CHOO". And singing and dancing. And playing ball. And being a jungle gym. And all the other stuff that makes being the mom of the Maddy awesome.

Pictures tomorrow. Even if they are the close ups of Maddy's chin. Promise.

Monday, August 8, 2011

I tried. I TRIED!

This weekend I tried to take pics of Maddy. I really really tried.

I started by trying to take some of her playing. She started bouncing off the wall, and I snapped a picture. And, no word of a lie, the kid looked like someone in an addicted celebrity's mugshot. I stopped the wall bouncing pics and waited for her to start running around. But Maddy noticed what I was doing and took great interest in the camera and the buttons. And then I made the mistake of showing her the rotating screen, and then she was able to look at herself and hit the button and open and close the flash and OMG! SO MUCH FUN! So... there are about 60 pictures of Maddy's chin and nose and chest. And then I took a few of her running around in her birthday suit. And, well, as adorable as those are they are not going on the internet. More like saved for her wedding day embarassment. So? I failed pictures.

But I still wanted to post! This morning it was about 645am and I needed to get Maddy up and her day started. We leave the house at 715am... I carefully opened the door and Madds whipped around and looked at me. I gently picked her and Odg up and we rocked and sang a little to start the day slowly. I layed her down on the change table and immediately she began naming body parts. "Eye, nose, mouff, haiw..." then oh what is that one called? Daddy just taught it to me yesterday, as she gently tapped my face. "Chin, Maddy." And her face lit up, as the word was said. "Chin. Mommy chin." Then we named arm and leg and finger and hair and ear. My girl, my love, my little thinker.

And, most amazingly, this morning my Maddy called the dogs by their names. She loves having them around, loves to say "HAI PUPPEE!". This morning she looked at Sherman, and haltingly said "hai Shew-mees". Then Walter walked by and I named him aloud. Maddy responded with "hai Wa-tew"... Yesterday she was eating some cheese, at baba and dido's place. I think she was done with the cheese and ready to move onto something else. She walked up to Walter, said "PUPP-EE, SIT!" and shoved the cheese in Walter's mouth. Walter was shocked and didn't have the time to respond. But she's learning the commands, she's learning their names... she's learning. And I think the dogs get it now too. Again, this morning (wow, it was quite the Monday!) Maddy was standing in the living room. Walter wanted to give her a kiss and started to rear up and try to get her face. Even before I could correct him, Walter realized better and let himself fall back to all four legs and instead just danced and wiggled in front of her. Maybe we're all learning, our crazy family of five.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Words, words, words... everywhere WORDS!

Well, back on the same old train. Maddy? For the most part awesome. Life? For the most part busy. Everything? It's just... good. Plain, old, boring, good.

Maddy continues to shock us daily on her vocabulary. Last night, in the bath, she was playing with one of her bath toys - a piece of plastic corn on the cob. It's been a pretty ignored toy. In fact, it isn't even a bath toy but something that ended up in the bath toy bin. Maddy grabbed it yesterday and held it up to me and proudly said "COHN!" and then proceeded to nibble it, just like you would corn on the cob. What?!

Also, Neil is trying to teach her to say Canada. Right now we're at "Ca-na-na" and I personally feel this is a much more adorable name for our country. Everytime Maddy gets close to saying it, we clap and cheer and she LOVES the attention. But most of the time we don't work with her to learn words (repeat them with her, encourage her to say them). She's just a language sponge and soaking it all in. We are being more and more and more careful about what we say in front of her. She sponged in WHAT word??! Although between fork and sit and clock, she already sounds like a trucker.

And now that August has hit (somehow, already... more WHAT?!) Neil and I have the rapidly looming panic of a list of summer projects yet undone. Baseboards and painting and yardwork oh my! And we're tryng to figure out a little vacation, something out of the city, to get away from here and relax a little. Although there is some stress before the relaxation as we figure out where and when and what about the dogs.

Next time, I promise more pics. There are a few on my phone, which are harder to upload here. And I am just not inspired to get my butt off the couch to grab the camera when Maddy is doing something cute or to grab the camera when I am off the couch and Maddy and I are playing. So often the pics are of her watching TV or eating. And I think we have covered those two scenarios to death.

After much frantic and disjointed typing... lunch is over. Time to get back to the work that pays the bills!