Pictures with Santa

Yesterday we went to the mall to visit with Santa.  Ever since my little Princess was born I would match her Christmas outfit to our Little Professor’s, but now that we have the Milk Monkey I’ve taken it to a new level.  I dress my boys in the same outfit.

I love it!

I realize I probably only have a couple more years, at most, to enjoy doing this.  For now the Professor humours me and even gets a kick out of it, but I know the year will come when he will be too old to wear the same outfit as his little brother.

Before we get in line to see Santa I like to get a picture of the kids standing in front of the gigantic tree.  I do it every year.  However this year the little Monkey didn’t want any part of it.

His two older siblings tried to convince him, they tried holding him in place as he screamed and they tried to encourage him to stand with them, but it was just not going to happen.

The Milk Monkey just wanted to explore.  There were too many bright and sparkly things to check out.

The Princess and the Professor were more than happy to pose for me!

The Princess even more so than her older brother.  She loves having her picture taken!

After our visit with Santa, the kids asked to go on one of the Merry go Rounds.  The little Monkey had never been on one, that was their argument, so Daddy and Nana J took them to ride it while I did some Christmas shopping.

Daddy took many pictures and it looks like they had fun, even if they Little Professor could barely get his legs to fit!  I’m pretty sure he’ll be requesting rides every time we go to the mall, just like his brother and sister, to which I will almost always reply “no”.  Nana J and Daddy of course are another story!

  

  

Decorating the Tree…

Last week we decorated the Christmas tree.  The Milk Monkey thoroughly enjoyed the whole process along with his brother and sister.  He wasn’t quite sure what we were doing walking around checking out trees but he was excited.  He seemed aware that we were doing something special.

When he saw the tree tied to the top of the truck, he pointed and shouted “ook ook” (look look), and when Daddy brought it in the house he grinned big and mischievous.  Having a tree in the house was the ultimate fun for him!

This year the Little Professor took over my job of holding the tree steady while Daddy tightened the base and secured it in place.  He was very proud of himself.

I was very proud of him too!

The Princess also took on a new job.  She stood behind the tree and passed the lights back around to Daddy.  It was fun at first but she was glad when it was finished.

  

The kids did the majority of the decorating.  We let them place all the ornaments where ever they thought looked best.

I think they did a fabulous job!

After the tree was finished we celebrated with Hot Cocoa while we watched the Polar Express.  The Milk Monkey was very impressed with the movie.

He’s getting so big!

It’s a joy to watching experience everything!

We’ve kept the tree lit along with a roaring fire all week and it’s so beautiful.

I’m enjoying Christmas so much this year!

 

I’m On The Edge…

I’m on the edge,

the edge,

the edge,

the edge,

the edge,

the edge,

the edge,

I’m on the edge…

 I’m not a Lady Gaga fan.  I don’t have anything against her, I’m just not into her music. Last year there was a commercial that played a clip of the song over and over again, so unfortunately or fortunately depending on your point of view, those are the only words I know.  As I clung to the edge of my bed last night a little Milk Monkey wiggled and jiggled beside me, coughing his little croup cough – that part of the song was the only thing that ran through my head.

And yes, I woke up singing it too.

Even still, I loved having my little guy in our bed.  At one point he opened his little sleepy eyes ever so slightly and whispered a little “hi” to me with his raspy, wheezy voice.  A little while later he wrapped his small restless arm around my neck and gave me a snuggle.  If it were up to me, I’d have all my kids in with us.  Daddy and I have very opposite views on co-sleeping.  I would love a big room where we could fit the crib and the bunk beds in.  It just makes sense to me to keep my little ones safely close by, but Daddy prefers they be in their own room and even though the Princess may back me up, I’m sure the Professor prefers his own space.

We came to a compromise a while back.  The babies get to sleep with us for the first 8 -12 months of their life.  They had their own cribs next to ours and it was wonderful. With the Milk Monkey we bought a co-sleeper for the side of the bed and it was the best baby item I’ve ever purchased.  I highly recommend them.  It’s so close to having the baby in bed with you while keeping them completely safe.  Eventually, each child transferred out of our room to their own, usually quite easily, except for the Princess.  Nothing was easy with that little one when she was a baby.

Even with all the co-sleeping we’ve done with the children in the past, it’s very seldom they try to get in bed with us.  I credit our early co-sleeping days to that.

Our little Monkey eventually went back to his own bed, where he could get the mist from the humidifier and I managed to get some space on the bed, but not much as Daddy hogs most of it anyway.

Moments That Make Me Smile….

There are moments during the day when my children take cuteness to a whole new level.

It makes me smile so big that it melts the deep stress that has taken my day hostage.

I know all mothers can relate.

Sometimes I even manage to capture the moment on camera.

Those are the best ones because I can relive them over and over again.

Here are a few of them…

Just good ol’ cuteness going on.

Reading is fun…

 

Reading is big in our house.

I like to think my children get it from me but Daddy reads a lot too…when he doesn’t drift off to sleep instead.

When I was younger I would read through the night.

I would read while walking to and from school.

 I would read during class when I should have been listening (Not something I condone).

I would read instead of doing my homework (I know, total rebel).

So imagine my excitement when it was time to teach the Little Professor how to read!

He learned quickly and easily and was reading books well beyond his age level until one day he decided he didn’t like reading anymore.

When I would try to encourage him to read he would act like I was asking him to watch paint dry.

There were a lot of eye rolls, heavy sighs and even a few screams of “noooooooo”!

I realized that even though he could read beyond his age, he couldn’t quite comprehend the actions of the character because he couldn’t relate.  The subject just wasn’t interesting him.

I made it my mission to find him books he’d read.  We tried all kinds and a lot of them were fails, but then we stumbled upon Flat Stanley books.  He liked them so we went with them for a while but eventually the Professor was bored with them.

With a little more searching we stumbled across graphic novels of his favourite super hero’s.  He enjoyed those also and still does, but they lacked the experience of a true novel that I wanted him to get a love for.  So we continued on with our search.

Then we came across the Andrew Lost series and they did the trick.  He fell in love with them instantly but he now finishes a full book in about an hour.  It turns out he’s a fast reader…that he definitely does get from me.

So now he’s almost done with the series and we’ll be on the hunt again.  We’re thinking of trying the How to Train a Dragon series next.  He’s excited!

I realized the key to getting a child to love reading is to let them read what they enjoy.  That sounds simple enough but the tricky part is finding that key book. I don’t believe there are any children who don’t like to read, I just think they haven’t found the right book yet.  Keep hunting.  The book is out there.  Eventually they’ll want to read and they’ll come to you for more books.

I am now going through the whole process with the Princess.  She’s still learning to read and doing really well. We’re taking it slow, keeping it fun, she’s loving it.  She already has a couple book series picked out that she wants to read but for now we need to master Dr. Suess.

In the meantime, I’m going to read her Little Women.  I have fond memories of my own mum reading that story to me.

We come from a long line of book lovers!

Even the Milk Monkey likes to sneak books at bedtime!

John Carver Inn…

October 31, 2012

We do not celebrate Halloween for many reasons.  I’m not going to get into that now.  However we aren’t oppose to fun.  In fact, fun is something we try to have a lot of in our family.  So instead of dressing up and going door to door for candy we do other fun things on this night.

This year we decided to spend the night at John Carver Inn in Plymouth.  When we told the kids they were super excited!

Since Halloween night is not a very popular hotel night, especially when it falls on a day in the middle of the week, we were able to check in super early.  That gave us a whole day of swimming in the pool.  Really, that’s what it is all about for our kids.  Not only did we get lots of time to swim but we had the pool to ourselves the whole day with our own personal life guard.

The pool at this hotel is super cool.  It has a big, winding slide that is really fast.  The kids probably went down it somewhere between 75 to 100 times, easily.

For the first half of the day we were calling it a pirates ship but then it dawned on me.  Plymouth.  Big rock in the center of the pool.  John Carver Inn.  Probably not a pirate ship but the Mayflower.  Sometimes it takes a little while, but I usually figure these things out eventually.  Usually.

After swimming for a while, a long while, we headed back to our room for lunch and a movie…Kung Fu Panda 2.  Then it was off to the pool again, this time we were there for close to 3 hours.  We had raisin fingers by the time we got out.

Now everyone is exhausted.  The kids are sound asleep, snuggled up in their comfy beds, dreaming of room service breakfast.

Today, I once again earned the title of BEST MUM EVER!

Hives, Coughs and Pneumonia…

The Milk Monkey has had a cold for the past 3 months.  He coughs all night and his nose is constantly running, he wakes up crying in the mornings and after every nap.  He had his 15 month wellness visit the other week and the doctor listened to his lungs – they were clear.  We were told to bring our little monkey back if it didn’t clear up in a couple weeks.

Last night we listened as our precious sweetheart coughed and whimpered throughout the night.  We knew something wasn’t right…it had gone on long enough, so today an appointment was made and we went to the doctors.  Our little guy has been having bouts of hives and lots of rashes for months now also.  When he cries his little face gets blotchy red and puffy and we’ve been fighting a persistent diaper rash for over a year.  I kept thinking it had something to do with allergies even though we’ve been told by the doctors before that hives aren’t necessarily an allergic reaction.  Sometimes hives are a result of a virus too.

The doctor who saw the Milk Monkey today thought that maybe it could be that his little body is producing too much histamine.  She noticed that when the Monkey laid his head on Daddy’s shirt his face became all red and irritated from the small amount of contact.  She decided he should see an Allergist to get to the bottom of all of this.  Meanwhile, she also wanted us to take the Milk Monkey to have his chest x-rayed just to rule out anything else.  It wasn’t an emergency or anything, but it had to be done before we see the Allergist.

I decided we should do it right away, just to get it done.  The hospital was on our way home and we only had two of the three kids with us so I figured it would be prudent to do it today rather than leave it to last minute.  Thank goodness Daddy agreed and we went today.  It turns out our Monkey has pneumonia starting in his left lung.  We were expecting the results of the x-ray within a day or two but instead we got a call on our way home and the nurse told us they’ve already sent a prescription for antibiotics to our pharmacy.

Tomorrow we will call the doctor to find out if the pneumonia is a result of untreated allergies or if it was unrelated.  I still want to see the Allergist to see if we can get some of the other issues cleared up too.

Tonight our little guy is in bed after his first dose of medicine and hopefully soon he’ll be feeling better.

Family…

We have a wedding coming up in the family!  My brother in law is getting married to a beautiful, wonderful woman this Saturday.  I’m very fond of my new sister-in-law-to-be…she’s very witty and fun.

The thing about weddings is that they bring family together… literally.  So tonight my husband’s Aunt and Uncle, who are visiting from the west coast, took it upon themselves to throw together a spaghetti dinner for everyone.  That’s quite a feat because there are a lot of people in my husband’s family.  He has four brothers, one of those brothers has 3 children like us, the other one has 7.   All together there were 25 mouths to feed and  quite of few of them belonged to teenagers.

One of the things I enjoyed the most about the evening was talking to some of my nephews and my beautiful niece.

Let me introduce you to a few of them:

  Jeremiah

I seriously almost didn’t recognize him when I saw him -it’s like he grew up over night.  He’s in high school now playing hockey…he’s trying out for the Varsity team.  He’s a hockey star!  He’s a good kid, with a good heart.  Every once in a while during the evening I’d look over to see him scooping up the Milk Monkey to keep him entertained.

I asked Jeremiah if there was something he wanted to say for this post…like maybe some wise words or a quote and this is what he gave me:

“It’s not about style; It’s about the results” – Bobby Orr

I should probably take this moment to tell you that my husband’s family is all about the hockey.

It was great to get caught up with Jeremiah and I was surprised to hear he’s been reading the blog!  He might just be my favourite nephew now!

Just kidding…kind of! lol

Cassie

Our only niece on my husbands side!  She’s smart, beautiful, fun and one of the sweetest girls I know.  She’s always helping one child or another. She just started college this year and she’s doing amazing.

She’s going to be a teacher and I can’t think of a better person for such a challenging  and important job.

Unfortunately, I don’t get to spend as much time with her these days…she actually has a life!

I’m so proud of her!

Scottie

Another hockey star!  In fact that’s how his arm ended up in a sling.  He separated his shoulder right before an important try out.  At the moment his hockey is on hold while his arm heals, but that hasn’t stopped him.  He has some impressive business idea’s.  He’s smart and I know he’s going to make something of himself.  I don’t doubt it for a second!  He’s the kind of guy who can take life’s lemons and turn them into lemonade and then sell it for some good cash if he wanted to!

Those are just three out of a lot of amazing nephews and nieces we have.

We’re so blessed to have them in our lives!