Saturday, October 29, 2011

Toddler Taming

These last few weeks have been quite a learning experience for us. With Chuck gone, the girls and I had to come up with a routine that worked for us and took into consideration that for most of the day I only have the use of one arm. My goal was to have something fun and exciting for Fiona to do each day that would keep her sane... So I thought I would share my toddler tamers with you. Some were more successful than others, I am sure it just depends on your toddler.

1. Crayola Color Wonder- These are those markers that only color on the "magic" color wonder paper. They quickly solved the problem of having to closely supervise color time. Plus Fiona got a kick just out of taking the caps on and off. Then she tried to eat the tips off a few of them :)

2 and 3. Dollar Store Finds... Animals that grow in water. This is really a two parter because I thought taking Fiona to the dollar store to pick out a toy would be fun. Yet it really does NO good to walk down an isle of toys and ask a one year old to pick something. She just wanted everything... started screaming for something yellow, then threw everything I handed her out of the cart and started grabbing for anything she could get her hands on. I escaped the store with a pack of capsules that grow into animals when you put them in water.

I tried to show her one in a little cup, but it took to long to grow and she lost interest. So I threw them all at once in a large bowl gave her a spoon and told her to make me animal soup. She delighted at the stirring, and the thought of "cooking" in the kitchen with me. Then she tried to eat all of the little sponge animals :)

 4. Stickers - I bought a few packs from WalMart and a blank notebook for her to stick them in. This activity was great and lasted for days... we would do a few new stickers each morning.

I do recommended that you do not encourage the sticking of stickers to your face... we had to cut some of Fiona's hair to get a few off her sideburns (yikes).

5. Fort Building- This I have to say was the most successful thing we did. For whatever reason all of Fiona's old toys became new and exciting once inside the fort. We left it up for a week. She loved curling up inside to listen to stories and to play with her light up toys.

6. Ball Play Set from WalMart- ok... so before Chuck left we saw this at the store and thought it was cool... like the old school ball pits at fast food restaurants. However, the product was a little deceiving, I mean on the package it looks like the kids are just swimming in balls, but then when you open it up there are not even enough to fill the bottom. She still loved it though, however it lost it's appear after a couple of days.

7. Naked Time... just the freedom to roam the house in the nude. This is risky business when you have not potty trained, but found that it was worth the clean up.

 8. Something seasonal... Pumpkin Carving - Perhaps a little advanced. I thought she might enjoy playing with the stuff inside the pumpkin but she wanted nothing to do with it until it had a face on it... then she loved it. We even found this cute video on YouTube about making a jack-o-latern and she asks me to sing it all the time.

9. YouTube - Can I just say that I love YouTube! Fiona has about 20 or so videos that she loves. Most of them are renditions of The Wheels on the Bus which is currently her favorite tune. But she also loves "Name-o" which is the BINGO song and pretty much anything with a train in it. You can create a playlist and then it just plays all your favorite videos in a row. I have like 30 minutes worth all lined up... she asks for it everyday.

I especially like that she enjoys this video which is of my favorite band... she just like it because there is a giraffe and an elephant on a bicycle.

10. Big Sister Jobs -  Last but not least, Fiona does not quite understand the whole big sister thing... and most of the time she just ignores Daphnie. But boy of boy does she like to push her in the swing. At first it kind of freaked me out because she would do it so hard and fast... but Daphnie doesn't seem to mind, and she is buckled in, so I let them both enjoy.

And there you have it... What kinds of things do you do to pass the time with your toddlers?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Poison Control

As stated previously I am well into my two weeks sans hubby and car. I do have to say that I have been holding up quite well under the circumstances (except for the other night when I got NO sleep and developed a cold and had a train wreck headache all day... no days off for mommies). I mean being a single parent is honestly one of my biggest fears... and now I'm realizing that while not the ideal situation is like a lot of things in life... you just learn how to survive.

For those of you who are not familiar with Fiona, she is a tornado. She lives life 95 miles an hour... I thought it was just normal toddler-ness, but it turns out some kids are a LOT more mellow. I love my little firecracker but she sure takes some taming.

Today was a Poison Control kind of day. To make a long story really short in the matter of like 30 minutes she had peed all over her new sticker collection I bought her, ran naked through the house, drank from a bottle of Fantastik antibacterial cleaner that I was trying to clean pee up with, and "played with" a tarantula near the door of our house!!!! Poison Control just had me give her a bottle of water, and she had No ill effects. The lady at PC was like "how is she doing" and I was like "she is smiling and laughing at me because she knows she did something she wasn't supposed to." (is it bad that I kind of wanted her to vomit from it just so that she would know not to do it again????) No ill effects to be seen.

Normally Fiona has no fear of Bugs, she will touch any of them (except for Bees I have drilled it into her head that they give "ouchies") She was only inches away from this spider... I seriously almost crapped myself. And I could not for the life of me get her away from it until I picked her up and dragged her off. My landlords son came out and caught it.... I hear they live in the mountains usually... this one just wanted to come down and say hi I guess. I will probably think twice about sitting down in my lawn to relax.

Never a dull moment round these parts.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Chaos insues

I kept trying to get a good photo of Daphnie. It is harder than you might think. One because the camera is always in hard to get to places during a Kodak moment because it is hiding from the toddler of the house. Two because she breast feeds almost constantly.... seriously why wont you just take the chupi (pacifier) !!! And three because it is hard to set baby down unprotected with toddler around.

This photo was taken at Fiona's nap time and amazingly enough captured a spit-up which only lasts like half a second.

I am actually typing this post with one hand. My left to be exact, and breastfeeding my kid with the other. I live about 75% of my life one handed now and have learned to do the majority of my daily tasks while breastfeeding. It is almost 9:00, usually I am in bed by now hoping to get as much sleep as I can cram in between night feedings, but I just wanted to say hello.

I am about to embark on two weeks without Chuck.... I question my ability to remain sane and for personal hygiene and grooming standards to be achieved. I am considering buying a huge bag of Halloween candy and just watching a lot of Baby Einstein. I'll let you know how it goes.

Wish me luck.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


      All I want to say is WHAT A MIRACLE! Yet some detail is probably in order here. Daphnie Autumn Call was born on Thursday September 22nd at 1:42 pm. She weighted 7lbs 13 ounces and measured 19 1/2 inches long. She is a cuddler, loves to sleep and eat and make little squeaky sounds. She has dark fuzz all over her little body and a good head of dark brown hair.

    The birth went better than I could have imagined. I started contracting on regular intervals at about 7 am, made everyone pancakes, took a shower, did my make-up and made a last minute list of things for Chuck to put in the car. By about 10 I was sitting in our recliner listening to the birth mix of relaxation music Chuck put together. Among some of my favorites song to labor to were, Debussy Reverie L68, Jewel Angel Standing By, and the Lord is my Shepard by The MTC... there were also some great Coldplay songs and even a Red Hot Chili Peppers one.
   Chuck did some guided imagery and meditation with me. He gave me one thing to focus on and took care of everything else. At around noon I started to feel like we should go to the hospital to hunker down, but instead we waited a bit longer while I labored in a camping chair in the front yard chatting it up with my Grandma. Things were intense but I felt calm and in control with each breath.
    When the midwife finally got us to go to the clinic to get my cervix checked she remarked, "you do not look like you are in labor" but my cervix was at an 8. So she followed us to the hospital and about an hour later I had a warm little body on my chest! It was just flawless I could not have asked for a better birthing experience.
   I do have to give A LOT of credit to my ultra calm husband and the use of essential oils ( which I want to write an entire post about).

Here she is with Grandma! So glad my mom was in town and my grandma too!

Fiona playing with the bed and all the buttons.

Daniel and Julia 

Happy Baby... or a gas bubble.

And her usual one eyed glare.

     It's crazy how fast I forgot what it's like to have a newborn. What a different world from having an 18 month old. Things have been a little nuts for me. Mostly because since I came home from the hospital I have been super weepy and quick to tears. I feel really happy and sad at the same time... funny because usually you think of being over emotional as happening during pregnancy, but not so for me. 
     I feel like my relationship with Fiona has had to change drastically in a really short time. Mostly because right now I am either glued to the couch breastfeeding, or I have a baby on my arm. It is great to bond with Daphnie, but I feel so divided... it just seems impossible to give them equal attention at this phase. Any mothers with multiple kids out there have any tips on not feeling like you are neglecting one to nurture another? I can't really pick Fiona up and we don't get out for our daily adventures at the park or around the neighborhood. I miss play time but know that it will be back soon, just got to beef this baby up, and let her figure out how her hands work and all that jazz. 

One day at a time.