Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Adventures in Pottyland: Part 2

photo credit: photosbytrayc

We started this journey many months ago, you can read about it here. Here is our story of the adventures in pottyland.

I think it was a combination of 3rd trimester exhaustion, jack not being completely ready and then the arrival of little miss but we never did get to nailing down the full time potty. With a potty full of stickers, they slowly became less exciting and when Makayla was born he did not want to go in the potty any more and would get angry when we tried to encourage him to, (which I wondered might happen) so we left it. Newborn phase is tiring enough, added chasing a toddler and managing a naughty dog, I wasn't ready to commit to the full time potty anyway. Jack continued to do it part time, some days all his pees and poos, some days just mornings, some days not at all. We discovered that smarties are much more exciting than stickers, so he gets a smartie every time he goes, LOTS of praise and told how proud we are everytime, lots of hugs and smiles and this he loves I think more than anything. It has been about a month that he showed real interest again and this week I'm not sure what changed but he was no longer interested in his diapers and ventured into his special big kid underwear drawer. I was quite excited to see this as there has been NO interest in wearing big kid undies to this point.  He asked to wear them, we said ok. but there is a special rule, we cannot pee or poo in big kid underwear, we have to use the potty. He agreed. we are on day 4, it is actually working!!! I am pretty impressed! And now we are going through smarties pretty quickly but I think he's got it! He has had a few accidents, 1 in his underwear and shorts while playing outside and another just today where he started to pee on my mom's outdoor carpet instead of peeing in the grass (yes he is a boy, come on, might as well take advantage of the tools given if you can) But he is so good at it, each time he has to go he ventures off to the bathroom, no longer using the little potty but uses the "potty seats" that fit on top of the toilet to go poop and to pee lifts the seat and stands high on his tippy toes ( so cute) just like daddy. (He thinks this is VERY exciting). He likes to be alone to go but tells you if he needs to go and asks for help getting his underwear off. He comes out with a big goofy smile on his face so proud of himself! He has even gone for car rides and long bike rides without any accidents in his new big kid underwear!! We have been putting him in pull ups on nap but has been waking dry and asks to pee upon waking!! Nights he is still waking up wet but I think that will take time and I think that's ok, it is 12 hours, i even have to go pee in the middle of the night. lol. So there you have it!! my little guy is getting so big. I am ready and I think I can get everyone else on board too. no diapers...  Wow it is strange to think he might be done diapers.. what an exciting new season for us and him! We are so proud of you Jack!

photo credit: photosbytrayc

Monday, June 11, 2012

The Grande Entrance of Little Miss...

You randomly hear about these labour stories that you think there is no possible way that it happened that way. You know the ones, silent labours, or completely pain free, i once heard one that the mama laughed the whole way through. Well this is my story, not pain free but nearly,  absolutely unbelievable, focused, drug free, peaceful, easy and fast. I bless everyone to have labours like this. Thank you father for your amazing grace.

 When having Jack my goal was to gave a drug free birth, I prayed for an easy labour. I have to say though not 'easy, it was manageable and easier than I thought it was going to be. i just kept thinking about leading up to it was all these women they show on tv screaming their way through labour, screaming at their husbands cursing their name and I didn't want that, I wanted it to be a peaceful enviroment, giving it the best chance and most natural way possible on its way out. I began to speak to my body, pray over it, for it to open up, be at rest and work with labour.  For God to show the way to the baby on how to get out, to prepare my heart and mind and enter into God's presence during contractions and for the strength to get through it. My pain thresh hold sucks but what I wanted for my kids was stronger than anything you could ever throw at me. Be at rest body and mind, for the Lord He is GOOD! and you know we got it. it was a positive experience, it was filled with his presence and it was doable. Read more here to read about Jack's birth!

I must admit, Jack's labour had been so good that I was afraid this time. I was afraid I wouldn't be able to do it, I was afraid that it would be terrible, I was afraid I wouldn't be able to manage it. I took practice contractions in false labour as they came and found that I had lost my strength to push through them. I whimpered through painful ones forgot to breathe, to rest, to look to Jesus. I felt like I was giving up before I was even starting. How on earth am I going to get through the real thing again? i thought. I let the enemy plant a seed of fear and it began to grow. Funny how you can let that take over so quickly. I asked God to talk to me to help me and when I recognized it was fear and wrote my last post. Get strong Heather. He has created us to be conquerors! He created my body to do this. I began to rest, began to worship, and read, get back in the head space of labour, and psych myself up for the big psychological game my body and mind would soon be playing with me.

After a couple weeks of labour psyche outs feeling frustrated, because its hard that I had to think of jack each time and making arrangements for him each time my body started into labour runs.. I prayed, father, I'm not convinced by the contractions, something has to really stand out for me to go to the hospital. Have my waterbreak or something so I know when its actually time..  I remember praying the same thing with Jack and I got exactly what I needed to know when it was time. I find that if I Pray specifically when he answers you know for sure that it was Him.  There was a bit of stress for me this time round, because when it's just you it doesn't matter when you go into labour, but when you already have a kid/kids you have to plan for them too, and you can't plan when you are going to have a baby so knowing who is around and who is on call and distances of where they are and how long it takes for them to get to you all comes into play.  Luke's parents, our closest easiest back ups and they had been away in Sweeden, everyone else from me was at least 20 minutes or more away from me, if this was going to be a fast labour as my midwives predicted, I could be really screwed just on waiting for a sitter so I was feeling stressed. I also wanted it to be a smooth transition for him to, the most natural way that he didn't feel left somewhere or shipped off while mom and dad disappeared.. I prayed for it all to be orchestrated perfectly....

I write this out almost minute for minute b/c it is quite unbelievable. Also some smart guy who designed a labour room with a large digital panel clock directly in front of a birthing bed is a total idiot

Sunday June 3, 2012: The day after the Sinnott's arrived back home from Sweeden I woke up at 5 am, a wicked hard contraction came on  OWWW.... S.O.B. -  I have to pee. these had been happening frequently in the night and just attributed to a full bladder so I went to pee and back to bed. 5:30, the same thing, went pee, i had relief no issue, 6 , 6:30 all the same thing. I wake up.. 4 contractions.  i think big deal. 1/2 hour apart, if this is it I have time. I woke up for the day and started about, I was unusually awake this am as I had been normally taking advantage of weekends where I could sleep. I washed my face and did my hair cute in a messy pony tail, brushed my teeth and thought if this is it, I am putting on waterproof mascara this time! (last time i have huge racoon eyes in all the pics from pushing, sweating all of the above through labour with regular mascara on -  LOL) I randomly picked up things to complete my labour bag. With no evidence and not convinced but something in me felt it maybe time i was caught in thought when Luke came upstairs, it was about 7 ish and had just had another contraction, I said to Luke, "I think I might be in labour." he was excited wanting to track contractions, I said to wait, "there's no point in tracking them now, their so far apart, wait till they get closer. " I continued on went downstairs and sat down on the couch. (7:30 ish)  POP ....   that was weird.. my brain started to run through info  I had read a few days earlier, "some women feel a pop, then a gush of water" but there was no water.. ow ow... weird. body is peaceful..then ow ow. what on earth.? i wait to feel for contractions and continue thinking..

15/ish min later i finally speak up.. 

Me: Luke... I think my water just broke. (i stand up. but nothing.. no gush, no flow, nothing really abnormal)
Luke: are you getting contractions?
Me: yah but they are all over the place
Luke: maybe its nothing then.
Me: well i know what  i'm feeling and i'm not going to ignore it, even if it's not right. (why are pregnant women so bitchy? sorry babe!)  ow ow. what the heck? I gotta pee. (I go to the bathroom)
Luke: see you just had to pee.
Me: I'm not peeing.... call the midwife right now.   (BAAAHAHAH to me this is funny)

8 ish: Luke pages the midwife, she calls back talks to me asks me whats going on, I tell her and add its weird though contractions are very random, and I don't know for sure if it has broken or what but that was weird. Her responce: DO NOT WAIT, GET TO THE HoSPITAL NOW.  I tell her that i don't even really have contractions though she repeats it again. now.. i think that's when you listen.

by now it is about 8:15 Luke kicks it into gear, calls the sinnott's who have been home for all of 13 hours, dresses jack, get the bag, loads the car, he is moving at lighting speed. I am gathering things, called my mom to tell her what was going on,  not stressing too much but moving, my mind feels unclear, with random contraction here or there, i am still wondering if my water did break (it didn't till the end with jack) but preparing to go to the hospital quickly.. 8:30 ish Jeremy gets there picks up Jack, we wave goodbye he is excited to play with Grandma and Grandpa. We get in the car to drive. i turn on the worship music, and WOAH, STOP. breathe breathe breathe, ok. GO. (where did that come from?!) As we drive the 15 minute car ride to the hospital, i close my eyes and breathe, the ride becomes a blur one contraction after the next, each intense, fast, close to each other a series of breathing luke coaching me, calming me, the worship music surrounding the car, a whirlwind of what doesn't even feel real happening all in one moment. i catch myself in a thought, where did all of these contractions come from? why are they so close? close like the end and it is just the beginning!! fear comes in and i get scared, how bad is this going to be!!??? but as fast as it enters, it gets kicked out, no time to think about it b/c breathe breathe breathe breathe. my body relaxes into it's trained calm state without any thought or effort thank you Jesus. Luke talks me through racing to the hospital, he is calm, he is peaceful, he is encouraging. 8:40 ish we arrive at the hospital, contractions in the parking lot, the hallway, the elevator, the registration lobby, in the 5 minutes that it takes to get upstairs i have already had 5. 8:45 ish I go to my room where the midwife has already checked me in, she says hello, i faintly smile, hand signal a wave and get on my hands and knees on the floor and flop my arms over the bed. contractions over and over and over.

midwife: When you have a break, We need to check you..
me: ok hold on, breathe breathe breath.... ok hold on again breathe breathe breath..... ok wait once more, breathe breathe breath.... oh yah you need to check me, ok go now before another one comes breathe breathe breathe (all of those breathing pauses contractions, seconds apart. I climb up on the bed)
she checks, you are 8 cm the other midwife laughs out loud, she can't believe it. and says, ha! its like you think she's done it before!
me: ok, (i can't even think to care. just breathe breathe breathe (I'm in the Zone baby!)

time goes by in a blur, luke is cheering me one, rubbing my back, encouraging me, talking me through each one, what feels like a few short minutes on my hands and knees i feel i have to push,

the midwife checks me again, my mom walks in which she says is around 9:20 as the midwife is checking me you are 10 cm, when you feel that bearing down again you can push if you like.  I don't quite feel the urge yet so I wait for it. 9:30ish This part on time is a bit of a blur but my mom has a picture of me at with baby in belly. The next picture is me with a baby! The midwife charted 7 minutes of pushing and baby was here,quite amazing and very different from the 1.5 hours i did with Jack.. I remember a lot from pushing, though difficult at first again to quite get it, in finding where to push, it was all of a sudden like it was the only time in slow motion. and then I suddenly understood it. The feelings, the effort, the thoughts, the shape of the baby's body and  head feeling and the changes in shape of the head, the neck, everything coming down and coming out. I felt aware, in tune, in control of what was happening. God timed it perfectly for me too, he timed the peak moment of the whole experience, with the biggest build up to the prophetic song playing in the background Let it rain by Jesus Culture. "LET IT RAIIIIIN, LET IT RAAIIIIIN, OPEN THE FLOOD GATES OF HEAVEN, LEET IT RAAAAIIIIIIIN, LET IT RAAAAIIN" things happening quickly around me, that same whirlwind as in the car, taking in an overwhelming amount of information in milliseconds, lost in that moment, and pushing through the pain... then it all stops.... just complete peace surrounds me.  I hear..


midwife: Heather reach down, come get your baby.

I open my eyes  in surprise and look down, reach down and I grab it around it around its chest under the arms as it is coming out and pull my baby onto my chest my baby.... Oh . my . goodness. I think that was the most special moment ever. totally unexpected, totally by surprise, aah-mazing. 

45 minutes....
seriously. in the hospital for 45 min. i would say count the driving time of when labour really started - an hour of real labour and if you want to get technical under 2 hours from the time my water broke unaware that anything was going on. that is rediculous. hands down, this is how labour should be.  every time. period. peaceful, fast, easy. maybe this is how it was really designed, how he planned it, to be a beautiful quiet moment of entry in this world surrounded by His presence and love.

to end this wonderful story, you may all remember that we had no idea the gender of this little one. Something that killed me the entire time I was pregnant,  I would have found out but with Luke really wanting it to be a surprise i gave it a go. The 9 months was full of emotional ups and downs, breakdowns, anxiety, acceptance. My goodness, what a horrible ride. But I see looking back it was something that God needed me to do, to talk to me about, to work through some things, expose areas of my heart, deal with judgements, ungodly beliefs, things he wanted to deal with waay down deep  in my heart that were planted a long time ago that deeply impacted me and couldn't be fixed without this 9 months of the unknown. Here after such an emotionally dramatic pregnancy obsessed with the wonder of boy or girl, this perfect little genderless being is laying on my chest, I think to check but I stop myself and realize boy or girl, I don't care, I love YOU, I love you, I love you, I love you.

my mom: So what is this little baby? Noone has said yet?
[i snap out of my dreamy state, i just assumed it was a boy, they had been saying HE the whole time through labour 'SPOILER ALERT']
midwife: well sh... You know Daddy, why don't you check out what you have there?
Luke lifts a leg, both of us expecting to see a penis (from my angle I can't see anything but we were totally convinced we would have a boy) it takes him a second and in disbelief and a big smile on his face says  "its a girl"
I look at him, we kiss and we have matching goofy smiles on our faces, A GIRL!

best. surprise. of. my. life.

9:37 am A wonderful, perfect little girl is born into our lives, to bring us and teach us about Joy.

Makayla: meaning: Who is like God. (kind and compassionate, my little lamb but fierce like a lion)
Elyse: meaning: God's Promise, Consecrated by God, God is my vow.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Labour Wisdom

the big event is coming up, 15 days and counting!!! and since my body seems to be doing its' thing baby is strategically planning it's exit inside of there I seem keep ending up with hours on end of practice labour how quickly my mind remembered some very familiar feelings i seem to have blocked out of the labour process. So i asked for labour wisdom, tips, all the best rolled into one and one of my friends said to me to re read what i recently wrote her when she was asking for labour tips. So I share. to pass along, to remind myself, to prepare for the up coming event...  the key words I pass as wisdom are

  1. Educate yourself!!! I cannot stress this enough, educate yourself, read, absorb, everything you can, educate, educate, educate. Understand labour, the stages, the patterns during contractions and stages of labour, the way your body works, how long different stages often take (for instance, did you know that transition - the end - the hardest part - only takes up to 45 min and this is when a lot of people crash and choose epidural, but your almost done!! and it gets easier after transition, contractions back off, and change patterns ready for pushing. And trust me after all that labouring, pushing feels like a relief!) EDUCATE YOURSELF!! so that you can know how to work with it and not against it.
  2.  invite the holy spirit into your labour and labour room - the presence of God was so thick in our room over the entire evening and every contraction it was amazing. 
  3.  on every contraction zone out and get into that place of worship, that unbelievable peaceful rest. Each contraction I would go to that place of rest, zone right out of reality and rest in that secret place almost like soaking,. breathing and unaware of what was happening in the natural realm (sounds kinda weird but totally the place to be).
  4. never let your brain understand the pain you are in in each contraction, it is mind over matter, getting through labour is the art of distraction, distract your mind from your pain receptors. for me it was a focusing on hand motions, and luke drawing on my arms.
  5. focus on breathing, opening up and going completely floppy and relaxed . In pain we naturally tighten up b/c it hurts, train your brain to change its responce mechanism and turn floppy on each contraction, zone out, breath, focus on opening up, and envisioning baby coming down the canal on each contraction, this way baby comes down easier and you arent fighting with your body with what it needs to do.
  6. use gravity to bring baby down so stay on your feet till the end or squatting, anything to bring that baby down on it's own and faster
  7. remember every contraction is doing something. so work with your body not against it to get baby out faster and easier.
  8. listen to your body, it tells you more than you know, and knowing what your body is doing and understanding it will help you get through each phase of labour and to the end.  when focused you can actually even feel the direction the baby is coming down the canal, and on each push feel it come down further and further. amazing really. 
  9.  and finally pray that God shows little one the easiest way out. We would speak to Jack, listen to Papa Jack, let him show you the way down and out.
  10. Your body is designed and created to do this, the enemy loooves to play with fear that it will be hard and the wost thing ever, but you need to go in with the attitude of excitement, positivity and the conqueror he has created you to be. It is doable drug free. Not enough people told me this when going in. I'd say 95% said I was nuts for wanting to do no drugs and that I wouldn't be ablt to do it. Well they are wrong, and there isn't enough people in the worl to say YOU CAN DO IT!! 

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Bravely making changes... Day 71: Chronicles of a toddler and his big boy bed

*except it is a medium wood colour

We figured since Operation Sianara Soother went so well, with little effect at all (other than the occassional babysitting the door when he is a little too wired for nap/bed), little man goes to bed without a hitch and like always back to sleeping right through, no issues. yeehaw. doesn't even talk about the soother. ssaawweeeet! so we thought we would try something else....

We bravely decided to revisit the big boy bed..

This week I found a bed from Kijiji that I have been saving my pennies for the past bit from Ikea. I'm talking the EXACT one, I could hardly believe it. Seeing as our current big boy bed frame proved to be a touch of a child hazard (Jacks head got stuck in the bars one day while playing.... OH CRAP!) Though appreciated the hand-me-down, we knew we needed to find another one, and I swooped it up for more than 1/2 the price it was selling for at the store.. I am sooo happy! We picked it up last night and talked to Jack about it and got him really excited about his NEW big boy bed! One that was not so big, just low enough to the ground that he doesn't have to use a step stool and that is really cute. I think it really is the perfect bed for him and we hoped for a smoother transition this time round.

Jack and Daddy even put it together together  this early am (7:30!!) Jack was happy, excited, and bouncing around shouting, "MY NEW BIG BED!" (and on a whim) We even were brave enough to say goodbye to the crib!! (dare we??!!!) and Jack and Daddy got their tools out and took that one down too. WOW ok, all of those who have followed along on this bog boy bed journey know that this hasn't been an easy transition so to actually say good bye to the crib!!? WHAT ARE WE NUTS! This has been a long journey, every night faithfully reading books in the big bed (trying to get him used to it), then jack going to the crib/toddler bed, the after he falls asleep we transfer him to the big bed, every night so that  he wakes up in the big bed every morning in hopes that he will finally choose to love it.

Needless to say, it hasn't worked and he has chosen the crib/toddler bed every time other than a few I can count on my hands. What was seeming to be hopeless, surrendering to the thought and soon reality of 2 cribs and a great mattress we had been given going to waste to sit in storage for a while, we somehow got the balls to try it again, try a new approach, we really had nothing to loose. 6 weeks till the new baby comes. I have got to try it now if I'm going to try it at all.

You know what? It worked.

He is asleep. on a nap. in his big bed.

After lunch, Luke put him down for nap and he jumped right out, looked around the room for his crib and said "where'd night night go?" (which is what he calls the crib) luke didn't respond just tried the regular routine as normal. Jack was a but squirmy and didn't want a book but jumped out of bed, so Luke put him back in and said "good night buddy, its nap time" and closed the door. Jack attempted escape a few time but gave up and stayed quiet on the floor. After about 5/10 min or so I went up to check on him, (this often happens, falls asleep in front of the door while planning his next escape) He wasn't quite asleep yet and when I opened the door, he got up and climbed into his new bed and said 'night night'.

I am so amazed, so shocked, so proud, I am smiling ear to ear. He likes his New big bed, and I think he's ready.

You know we looked at him just yesterday and said man oh man, you aren't a baby anymore, look at him, so big, he is a little boy now. I am so proud of him, I hope this time is no problem, b/c the next step is his new ROOM!! It is so weird to see him grow so fast, but he will ALWAYS be my baby :)

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Operation Sianara Soother a Great Success

photo credit:

Day 7: Dare I say it? Dare I??? SUCCESS!!! I am so happy to say that even though there has really been no fight since Day 1, I think it is safe to say that Operation Soother is a great success. I am so proud of my little man, so proud that he threw it away, gave it up, decided that soothers are no longer required in life :) Naps and bed have been mostly smooth, it takes a little longer for him to go down b/c he doesn't have the magical drug of soother to instantly settle him, but he is happy, he goes to bed without a fight (minus today's nap b/c he was wired but that doesn't ask), and he doesn't even really ask for it. The Soother has become a thing of the past! I am relieved that he is napping still. I am relieved that this was so smooth, I am relieved that this happened before the baby came, before we changed to the new room. I LOVE that this sweet little face will never be covered with a plastic suckee in his mouth ever again! Hooorraaaahhhh for a sootherless Toddler!!

Operation Sianara Soother: Day 6

no excitement to report today,

nap, cried for 5 min then went to sleep.
bedtime he was so wired but still fell asleep without a fight just babbling and talking to himself for sometime and for the first time didn't ask for the soother at all.


Tuesday, April 10, 2012

morning wake up

This morning I woke up to a small person climbing over me, into my bed to snuggle in between me and Luke. He was fully equipped with dirty dog and climbing under the covers fully intending to sleep there. lol.  It was 5 am. As sweet as this was and how big of a smile it brought to my face and accepted if it were 7 am. Its just not happening at 5. lol.  Luke picked him up gave him lots of snuggles and out him back in his bed. Man it was cute what a great wake up.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Operation Sianara Soother: Day 5

Well Mommy and Daddy are both at work today so that means Jack is at daycare. I felt unsure as to what would happen without the soother today for her, unsure if he would be totally fine or milk it b/c he thinks that maybe she would give in. I was happy to hear good reports,  pretty easy for her, and she is tough, a cry for "SAAAANNNNDDEEEEEE SOOOTTTHERRRRRR" but with a simple response of the soother is in the garbage, he asked again SAAANNNNDDDEEEE SOOOOTHER" she replied "Carter (his best bud) doesn't have a soother", Jack said  "Carter soother gone?" she said "Yup he's a big boy and so are you, soother is in the garbage, goodnight"  and closed the door. "WAAAHHHHHHHH" but by the time she was at the bottom of the stairs, he was asleep.


Bedtime: Jack has been bouncing like a sugar high monkey for the past hour and i'm not really sure why since he never had any sugar.. We read his books and off he has gone to bed. not to sleep but to bed. i could hear him babbling away in his room. I hear silence at the moment but he isn't crying or upset, perhaps asleep by the time I finished writing this.  When going to bed he talked about his soother being in the garbage and when Luke picked him up to have a snuggle and put him down he asked once for it, but with no complaints we just ignore the request and out the door Luke and I went.

So I do hear quiet now, seems just a few short sentences written and as fast as he is jumping on the bed he is asleep on it.

As exhausted as we are today, (no sleep last night, sick dog, vomit, poo and pee everywhere, long day at work, more poo when we return, busy child, dinner, cleaning, just wanting the noise to stop and us sit down) I can't help but get a big smile, I am so proud, and HE IS SO FREAK'N CUTE.

Operation Sianara Soother: Day 4

I am happy to announce it has still be smooth sailing. He still asks when he goes to bed but easily forgets when you tell him its in the garbage. YEAAH!! I am jumping inside with happiness! I honestly thought  yesterday for the first time, wow this was not nearly as hard as I thought, what was I afraid of? hmm maybe the same stubbornness we went through with the bed, sleepless nights, insane crying, temper tantrums, all of the above. but Luke was prepared for all of that, even if I wasn't and I'm so glad that he made me stick to my word about doing this.

Day 4: 

Naptime: Went down a bit late b/c we were at church, we had a bit of a cry but again in only lasted about 30 seconds before he just went to sleep.

Bedtime: Nothing eventful either, but after a looong day of church and Easter and family and happy child, we weren't even home till 9pm, which is an hour and a half past bed time. I was suprised that he didn't fall asleep in the car but happily sang twinkle twinkle  all the way home. When we arrived he asked for books and the soother, but again reminded it is in the garbage and after saying goodnight within minutes he went to sleep.

Today (Day 5) He is off to daycare, we told our sitter how we have responded so far, we hope it goes smooth for her too. We had Jack tell her where he put the soother, he excitedly exclaimed, "IN THE JABAGE!!!" So she made a big deal too how he is such a big boy! and Jack was happy.

One thing I have noticed as a real positive is that he doesn't have any grumpy wake ups any more. He used to a few days a week have a period of time that it took him to wake up after a nap or nighttime. He would sit with a grumpy look on his face and not want to fully wake up or talk much and when you took the soother or asked him to put it in his bed he would grump at you, cry or fit. Since the soother has been gone, he has woken up happy as a bug on every wake up. Today he said "Morning mommy! come on lets play!" and headed downstairs. What an a wonderful change! When telling my dad this yesterday he said how funny it was that when you remove addiction from your life what a difference it can make. I never would have thought of this at all but really it has been an amazing difference. It was weird to come across one today and instantly throw it out before he could see it and I can honestly say I am ready to look for all the soothers in the house, car, diaper bags, emergency places and throw them out.  I am confident that they are gone from life, at least until we decide to introduce one to the new baby, if we do.. still gonna play that one by ear.

Still wondering when he forgets about it and stops asking but at least there are no fits and bedtimes are smooth. GO JACK! 

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Operation Sianara Soother Day 3

So here we start day 3, Jack slep the night last night no problems and woke up at 7am ready to play as usual. He asks every now and then about the soother, but no major issues that its gone. 

Naptime: We all went to a birthday party today for a friends daughter, Jack loved it, had tons of fun and was very tired on the way home. He went to bed with what i thought was ease, asked about the soother, we reminded him that he put it in the garbage, he laid down and I went to the basement to do one more load of laundy while Luke ran to the store. When I came up 5 min later I still heard silence till i sat down... i began to hear him singing to himslef, talking, giggling, then what sounded like possible climbing? and playing with something that didn't sound like toys.. i left it, he is quiet, he will fall asleep. the noise continued, then about 10 minutes later CRASH! and WAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH.
I went upstairs to see what was going on to find a crying little boy holding his head saying "MAMA BONKEEE HEAD!!" The blinds were open and curtains wide open and sun streaming in the window. i settled him down, pull the blinds back down, and close the curtains, i tell him its time for a nap, he cries but doesn't ask for the soother. Finally its quiet, but i can hear him tossing and turning in the bed through the monitor.

An hour passes, he is still awake. Luke came home from the store suprised he is still awake but reminded me that  Jack discovered the loot bag from the birthday party had jube jubes in it (that we didn't know were in there) and we caught him eating them all in the car (he has never had anything like this. lol) that explains it.. HE'S WIRED.  nap time cancelled. We'll try again tomorrow.

Bedtime: Well seeing as there was MUCH excitement in the Sinnott Household this afternoon, (Uncle Matt came to put in new lights for Jack and the baby's new rooms, the first step to our construction of the nursery) Jack couldn't even think about being sleepy. A day with no nap as never actually happened so I was kind of dreading how terribly grumpy and tired he would be, but Matt was waay to interesting for him and with so much "fix it" stuff, Jack had to join in with his tools along side with Uncle Matt and Daddy. (it was adorable, 'Uncle Matt, Uncle Matt, LOOK i fix it!") They finished just in time as bed was approaching.  We read books, and knowing how tired Jack was, I knew he wouldn't even notice the soother missing, I was right,  he fell asleep right away.

So far this isn't so bad and I know it could definitely be worse. I just keep praying for Grace. I hope that it continues this way and that he soon stops asking about it.  He went from always asking and stealing it from his bed during the day and not letting go in the mornings and after nap (as soothers were a sleep only thing for us), to not talking about it at all and only asking when he goes to bed but when we remind him that he threw it away that seems to be a good enough answer for him. SO on goes the adventure. Thank you Jesus for Grace.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Operation Sianara Soother!

We recently decided that the soother should probably leave soon. No offense to others that keep there binky's, paci's, dumb dumbs', choochoos', past 2, but watching him with it every day, seemed to get more and more attached. I was warned to rid of it prior to now but seeing as we were transitioning other things it just didn't seem like a good idea yet... or was this just a good excuse because I mommy wasn't ready... i think its probably leading towards the latter. i just didn't feel like it was the right time. my baby. growing up so quickly, loosing the soother would just be one more thing. He is now inches away from touching head to toe in his crib/ toddler bed (which he sleeps wonderfully in now! and even sometimes chooses the big single bed!) Using the potty, we have still been really relaxed on the the potty but he consistently goes every day at least once or twice, sometimes all his pees and poos for the day. I think that we will be able to go full time when I am home full time and have the ability to have a consistent routine with him every day. He is a little communicator, though shy in front of new people, he is talking like crazy, now talking in a lot of full sentences 6 or 7 words even! knows almost all of the alphabet, sings songs all day, counts to 20, playing baseball  (actually hits the ball with a bat!), and basketball (amazed that he can throw the ball from 3 feet away and get it in!), golf and hockey (passes to daddy and he passes back), I just can't believe my BABY is growing up so fast. Faster than I expected. So the soother, perhaps was one last thing to hold on to... before admitting that my little baby is becoming more and more my little man.  I don't want him to grow up. and brings me to tears thinking about him getting big. its just going by so fast.  I think of my parents, they must still look at us and think and remember us as little babies. I understand when my mom used to go through our baby clothes and memories and cry because I do it too.  Anyway side thoughts, all consuming thoughts.. man i love him. After reading studies and a lot on soothers and toddlers, and not only addiction to the soother, development of the mouth and theeth and possible stunting emotional development and learning coping, we decided, I needed to suck it up and we needed to just do it. Get rid of the soother. So we set a date weeks ago, the next long weekend so that we could have all thursday night, friday, saturday and sunday to wean him prior to sending him back to daycare on monday..   So here we started...

Day 1: Day one was better than what it could have been, we decided to watch the "bye bye binky" song by elmo. So he went around the house singing bye bye soother all day long. At the end of the day we talked to him about saying bye bye to the soother and putting it in the garbage. After some time of him getting some last sucks and chews in he decided to say bye bye and threw the soother in the garbage. We waved, and then gave him lots of praise and told him how proud we were of him. We headed to bed and continued with the regular bedtime routine. When it came to the end when we turn off the light, he asked for his soother, we reminded him that he threw it the garbage. He at first accepted it, we said goodnight, closed the door and thought we were in the clear. Untill 30 seconds later when the crying began. "my soodah, my soodah, peeeeaaase daddy, peeaaaase" every cry a stab in my heart. Our wonderful sleeper all he wanted was that 2 minutes of sucking to fall asleep, (he only had it during sleep time, not during the day) but it killed me to know, that this would just take a couple minutes and he would be to sleep! how could i be doing this?  but Luke encouraged me to hold on. 10 minutes went by, OHHHH my heart!!! IT ACHES IT ACHES, MY HEART!!! i go up i try to comfort him, he wants daddy. I come downstairs and Luke goes in and hear his sobbing through the monitor. I cry, my baby I am torturing him!! Luke comes down and says we just have to keep sticking it out (man my husband is awesome). I want to cave. I want to rescue him, I want it to stop. I want to cry, I do cry. I want to grab that soother from the garbage and give it to him. But then, 15  more minutes later... silence. he sleeps. The thing about Jack is that he doesn't actually need the soother, he loves sleep and doesn't even sleep with a soother all night, he just uses it to dope himself out. As soon as he is asleep hi spits it out. 

He woke up once in the night and once in the morning, but both times went back down without a problem too sleepy to even think about the soother.

I survived. My heart is bruised but I survived.

Day 2:

Naptime: Luke was home with him, put him down for nap, and Jack asked for his soother, Luke did awesome, and questioned him, "Soother? but remember you threw it in the garbage." He recieved that. " Soother in the garbage, bye bye" some fussing but 2 minutes later He was asleep.

Night time: Same bed time routine, he again asks for the soother, we remind him again he threw it in the garbage and say goodnight, close the door and walk out. for the next 15 minutes we hear him babbling in his room about his soother, "where soodah? oh garbage, garbage, soodah in the garbage. bye bye soodah! in garbage. my name is jack sinnott, jack sinnott, jack sinnott, soodah in the garbage, bye bye bye bye bye bye. soooodaaahhh" and on it went. until, silence. he fell asleep, mind you in front of the door not in bed, but he fell asleep. without a fight, without the soother. 

End of Day 2 and I have hope. We aren't going back. We will stick it out, we are strong enough. Sianara Soother.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Day 48: Chronicles of a toddler and his big boy bed.

HE PICKED THE BOY BOY BED!!!! not the toddler bed, the true bigboy bed. After nearly 2 months of transfering him to the bed every night after falling asleep in the toddler bed, so he would hopefully like' sleeping in it, he picked it, we read books in it, i turned off the light and he went to sleep. I AM OVERJOYED.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Adventures in Pottyland

I must admit this venture started much earlier than I expected. I don't think I thought it would happen for another year...

Last summer the kids in Jack daycare were all learning about the potty, about average age of 3, he would watch them all learn and came home squatting on pots and buckets making peeing noises. We thought it was silly, and so early (18 mos) but had read to act on potty training when your child is showing interest in the potty and that a child comfortable with the potty as a familiar object in the home is more likely to use it easier. So with a random trip to ikea one day I picked up 2 el cheapo' $2.99 potty's to throw in each bathroom. I thought, even if he never touched it, at the very least i have lost 6$.  This way if he was interested that he can play with them or whatever he wanted.  It lived in the living room for some time, a good bucket for cars and snacks and became one of his toys.. a lime green potty in the living room, what a conversation starter.. lol. He would fake pee complete with peeing noises and lots of naked potty sitting while watching tv, putting it on his head and soon enough even his animal friends were beginning to use the potty too, Original Dirty Dog, the imposter, # 3 and Blue, Winnie the Pooh and Mickey Mouse, they all looved to use the potty and would often find them sitting on the pottys in the house. We talked to him a lot about the potty, let him come into the bathroom to see that we all use the potty. Mommy and daddy and talked to him about Amma and Papa and Aunties and Uncles, we ALL use the potty. Most recently my niece has been learning so this was even more great exposure.

It wasn't until past November that on my Birthday he gave me the gift of a poopoo in the potty! While he was having some naked diaperless time  (which we would do each morning for a few hours), He on his own, went to the potty! I was so amazed, so proud, and totally shocked!! With lots of praise we took the potty out of bathroom and brought it to live in the living room. A month went by with very little interest it wasn't until Christmas eve that he decided would be a great time to peepee! wowow waayy to go!! January became a blur of hit and misses, many floor clean ups and great successes! But with a no pressure approach he seems to be more interested than when if we would force him to sit on the potty to go. He figured out his own way, trying for a while doing it like daddy and standing up leaning against the wall, (lol!)  trying to aim, sitting down, learning when to control pee, how to controll and learn when its coming and when its too late ("mommy, i pee... i wet"). It is still a process but it seems to be coming along. Its been a few weeks now of steady peeing everyday at least once in the potty!

Last week we were at my brother and sister in laws and saw they have a sticker wall, where my niece gets a sticker for every peepee or poopoo in the potty. I thought it was a great idea and decided to do out own version of the sticker wall but it would become a mighty potty of stickers! where we place the stickers on the potty! Once we started this the peepees and poopoos started flowing! He was so happy to recieve stickers that he could put on his very own potty! We have had 3 days now of 3 and 4 pees or poos in the potty PER DAY!!! One day he only used 1 diaper! 1 pee! dang that's freak'n awesome!!!  I am so proud!

We are still in the process but I am proud to say I think we are on the way and he is getting it! the mornings are consistently going pee and poop right up until his nap at 1pm. He gets excited when he goes, has a big smile on his face and yells "PEEEPEEE COMING!!!" right before he has to go. He is so excited to show us and take his pee and poo to the toilet and flush it down and wave and yell "BYEBYE POOPOO!" His proud little face smiling up at us and picks and collects his sticker and places it carefully on his potty. I think this has to be the most joyful potty training I have ever encountered. no pressure, just the pure joy of him wanting to do it on his own. I love it! I'm not holding my breath but it would be great if he got it by the time the baby came. I think it is us now that it has to really change our habits too. Its easy at home but taking him out, making sure we ask him if he has to go and really listen when he tells us. I am loving the stress free potty and loving that he is establishing such independence. 2 years old and 1 months, Mommy and Daddy are SO proud of you! Way to go little man!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

A Gift of Blessing

A while back I was asked to commission some paintings for some parents as gifts to their kids. I must say, this was the most touching, personal commission I have done in a while, if ever.  I think this gift is beautiful. The parents wrote letters, prophetic and encouraging words and blessings over each of their four girls. So unique and personal, it was just simply beautiful. I cried while painting them, so lost in worship, so overcome by the presence of God, the love that these parents have for their girls and love that I have for my own son and little miss or mr on their way. I incorporated their names and the letters written by each parent and painted in worship to listen to what God was showing me about each of them and what they and their name meant to Him also and were expressed visually on canvas. The importance of a name. Wow. the one you choose for your tiny person when they are born that has so much to say about who they are and who God has called them to be. There is SO much in a name.

This seemed to be a work in progress, first the parents writing of the letters then me waiting in the timing to paint them, waiting on the right moment in worship to paint them with Jesus, and I'm so glad I waited. Doing this forced just wouldn't have turned out the same. I think this is an amazing gift a parent can give their child, something personal, from them, that expresses their heart, and deep love for them individually and press in really deep into that little spirit, the love and security and blessing.

If you are interested in commissioning a similar project please email me at

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Day 23: Part 2: Chronicles of a toddler and his big boy bed.

I am happy to report today went smoothly. After a volunteered nap this afternoon and sleeping  for 2 hours (much better than it could have been but still not the 3 hours I want back) and peeing and pooping on the potty all by himself. I had hope. This evening, he peed on the potty AGAIN all by himself and after stories, hugs and kisses, he cuddled up in his toddler bed on his own and went to sleep. no fight, no fury, just sleep. Thank you Jesus, may this insanity be coming to an end..

Day 23: Chronicles of a toddler and his big boy bed...

Today my son peed and pooed in the potty all by himself, unassisted, unprompted. just got up from playing and sat down on the potty and went, and continued on playing like that is just what you do.. ummmmm.....?!???!!!  then about 1/2 hour ago found his soother, said "night night mommy", climbed the stairs and made his way into his BIG boy bed, and asked to read books. after he climbed back out and climbed into his open crib/toddler bed and went to sleep...

uhhh... this is a change.... first.. HOW PROUD AM I? second... WHO'S CHILD IS THIS?

Dear Jesus, please let this  be the beginning of some easier transitioning. It has been nearly a month, I would love for him to just choose on his own that this is his new bed and that he wants to sleep in it. It would be great if it were not to be so hard anymore. also, the easy potty training is a great bonus. THANK YOU FOR GRACE TODAY.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Seasons of Change

The past week has been such a crazy one, it feels like the 2nd half of pregnancy just whizzes by. I can't believe I'm nearly 23 weeks! Where as the last month gone!?

The past few days I have been wanting a new start. Fresh, spring hopefully approaching, (common willy! we right this time!!) Preparation for my little one, knowing we are staying in our house for a bit gives me the new desire and jump to paint the walls fresh, organize and dump the junk! I seem to go through this every year. A big cleansing of the house and my mind and my heart. I want to get organized, live organized and prepared.  Fresh paint throughout that is CLEAN and BRIGHT! some new rooms will be under contruction soon for all of us which Luke will be building very soon. My brain is busy at work preparing them, putting details together and not knowing what or who little miss or mr has put a bit of curiosity and caution into designing the nursery. Its interesting to try to plan a beautiful room for a boy or girl.. Luke is almost done his MBA. 3 weeks of his LAST class and about 7 weeks of his thesis. He has been working so hard the past 2 years and now it is finally coming to a close. It really is the start of a new chapter. 

I am feeling more optimistic this morning. just feeling so strong in everything in me shouting, FRESH START. Luke feels the same way, he said he would like to take a shovel to our house, throw it all out and start again. The house feels so cluttered and messy. I need to get this under control.  When I try to pinpoint just one area of the house, I can't seem to, it feels like every area needs a big clean up! The art studio is a DISASTER. I have to say at this point I almost feel ready to throw it all out or give it all away. I have no space. Clutter and disorganization really messes with my head. Mind you I'm not the tidiest person, I wish I was but I get tired and lazy and often don't put things in the right places, forget where I leave most things and leave piles that i have been working on all over the place. It drives my husband crazy, and myself too really, I'm not sure why I can't just PUT THINGS AWAY. I like to collect things that I see can be something or used for something. I like to turn them to something new. I have a hard time throwing things out. Luke says I have a tad bit tendency of hoarder in there. I deny it of course but when I begin to see things build up without a place or ongoing piles I can't help but wonder.. eep... I can make up excuses but really when it comes down to it I just need to throw things away. Today I got rid of a garbage bag of clothes. A bag on hand-me-downs of maternity clothes that were mostly s and xs they didn't fit so I past them along. It felt good. Get the junk out! This week I put all my clothes away. I know sounds funny but I am the one with the heap of clothes so high I often can't get to my bed easily (i feel like i have written this post before). Luke's side is perfect looking, mine is insanity. I took out all the ones that don't fit and put them away in a chest until baby is here, then I can switch them all back over again. next will be the stack and I mean stack maybe 30" tall on my bedside table, of books! i don't know how I collect so many there but I do... and magazines that collect beside, under and all around my bed... i need to just TOSS. I have just decided I'm going up with a big garbage bag and cleaning out the crap.

Funny though usually during these times I get major parallels in my own life that need clean up, so perhaps God starts to talk to me about them then. The past 6 months to a year around the house we have been patching things up. I think of the floors, the back splash, preparing the walls, some unfinished projects. It has also been a season away from Church and even friends. Perhaps its been  a season of quiet healing, preparation. and all this time while we patched sanded and smoothed the walls, all they wait for is paint. I see more nails popping, more holes that need to be fixed, maybe its time for a big once over and see what else needs to be done before i repaint. I'm tired of the cover up and want perfect walls in my own life.. Just like my home, its time to see what I knew my life was inteded to be and step up and make it happen... Yes this is a season of mommihood, resting and growing, raising my babies but in my identity, myself, my heart, with Jesus, step into who he has really made me to be rather than living with patchy covered up walls.

I recently bought the new bethel cd the loft sessions and i have pretty much been absorbing and marinating in it and His presence since I bought it. I have actually been motivated to go to church and seek out more of him. To listen, to absorb, to take it all in. I am noticing a difference.

My mom recently talked to me about finishing projects you alway intended to do or just finish what you started and maybe then God releases something new. I have all these ideas swarming in my heart and mind over the years and for whatever reason never get carried out. I think its time. I feel good today. I think its time to start cleaning up and ready for our new chapter and fresh start.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Day 17: FED UP Chronicles of a toddler and his bog boy bed...

Day 17: Ok. I am loosing it. so far past mad now that I am at a loss. Last night we travelled 1 h back and forth to bed, today at nap he is still up, it is 2:00 and his bed is 12. I thought this was suppose to get easier? better? that at some point he would get it? Last night so tired of this shit we put a door knob safety protector thing on, so that when we close the door, he can't get out. I felt a bit bad, the pressure gate idea didn't work, he kicks it down, close the door, he opens it, patiently we walk him back hoping at one point he will just go to sleep but it is so tiring and such a fight, he doesn't seem to be getting it. Last night he eventually did go down, by choice and not upset. Today he ASKED to go to bed, i put him to nap and he has been screwing around ever since. After 1 h of back and forth I have shut the door. door protector handle thing on, he can't get out to wander. He SHOULD get the hint right?

I absolutely have no idea what to do. i have kept he same routine, we have been consistent, we have been patient, we have been persistent, we do everything that we are "suppose to do" that teaches a kid to indepently sleep on their own (which he NEVER has had a problem with), he should, he can, but won't make the decision to sleep. I am so upset that my once amazing sleeper, easiest kid to put to bed, 15 h solid through the night, 2x  2 -3 h nap a day baby,  has turned into a 10h a night of disturbed sleep, sleeper that wakes up  frequently and through the morning, with 1x 1.5h (if that) a night sleeper...... I hate it.

People tell me he will settle, he will get it, he will go back to normal. For now all I know is I am exhausted, NEED the break and don't have a clue what I'm going to do when the new baby comes around.... Oh Jesus, please have this change soon. I can't much longer..

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Living with Hands wide open.

I live my life believing and knowing that God is in control of  it. He guides our paths, gives us direction on decisions, and Luke and I have been given good discernment for a reason.. He protects and warns us from bad decisions and when we ask for a clear answer b/c we really don't know either way He is faithful to show us. I trust Him and know that He has the ultimate plan and knows what is best for me, my husband and family, and our life.  Over the years He has proven himself over and over showing us how he orchestrates every move and decision (even when they are hard) but that that he works that all things are worked together for our good.

Trust is a funny thing. Its living open, willing, flexible, secure... We have lived with hands wide open, holding things loosely, knowing that He is in control. That He knows way more than I do, so I should probably just trust Him with what He feels is best for my life.  But Trust can be a hard place, it can feel disappointing at times, feeling like the dreams you have are not happening, or not understanding timing or why something that may seem so perfect doesn't work out. But the beauty of Trust is knowing that even though what you feel is perfect or right, God might have a different plan,  something even better in store and knowing that and really believing that even when things feel like they aren't working out that there is a design, a plan and and a purpose as to why and it is because He has a better plan than we could ever create for ourselves..

This said, right now I am trying to hold onto and remember this all.

We have a little townhouse that we are quickly busting out of at the seams in. It has been the never ending quest to find a new house. The market is so insane here, prices are through the roof and even for the tiniest detached home start at  $400,000. House hunting has been depressing, feeling like we are never going to find anything. That is until this weekend.... Where a last minute showing gave us hope. We walked in and melted. I mean I was a puddle on the floor in love with everything we have ever dreamed of in a home. Wow, THIS is God. He has finally brought us to our home. We have found it, the search is over.11 foot ceilings, gorgeous old heritage home with original old moldings and intricate door handles and air vents, locks you open with skeleton keys, a stunning cascading staircase, and original wood floors throughout, french doors, large doorways, with upgraded stunning kitchen with granite counters and stainless steel appliances, a big yard with lounging deck space, exposed inside brick  (g'aaahhhh love) a 3rd floor massive studio for art and photography, lots of space, just about 2300 sq feet of perfection.  BUT it was a semi and had no garage, we were ok with that. We had never even considered a semi. As we walked through the room we fell more and more in love every room more perfect than the next. As we sat in the living room, we felt peace, we felt home. Finally this is it. Exactly what God intended for us all along. We loved it so much we came back with my inlaws for a 2nd look in the afternoon. We knew, we decided, we are making an offer. When leaving we sat in the car and prayed over the house, "father, we love this house, it is perfect for us, if this is you, let this all come together easily and fall into place."

We had a couple months back found a home we loved and tried and tried to buy  but it was so much stress and so hard, and such a fight that we knew it wasn't suppose to be this hard, That it wasn't our home. We hoped this time things would be different, and sure enough within the next hour things started to fall into place, the financing approval, the down payment, possible renters for our current place (we wanted to keep both of our homes and rent out our current one), things just felt right.  We informed our agent that we wanted to put an offer in. So he came to the house put everything together ready to go but  they weren't receiving offers until Monday at 7pm so we registered the offer but wouldn't go into negotiations until Monday.  I prayed again. "if its ours, let us get it. " (and I think a little consciously, without saying felt if its ours let no other offers come in)  Sunday came and I left Luke at home to study and went to church with Jack. I asked Jeremy my father in law what he thought of the house, he said that he had mixed feelings. I was confused by this b/c we had felt nothing but positive. He said "the inside feels just right, totally perfect but the area, the street, what it backs onto doesn't feel quite right..... But that's just my opinion.."  I wanted to see what he meant, see that,  b/c maybe I was missing something. So when I got home, I picked up Luke and we went for a drive. There were a couple of quirky things like there is a parks in rec center at the end of the street, and a couple of tiny homes but nothing that would cause me to not buy the house. We decided to look up and down the streets and to see the surrounding neighborhood all beautiful homes and mature trees, just stunning... until we came across a funny little street behind it. As we drove onto what did not seem like a street but muddy grass, there are 5 dumpy houses and no driveways, just cars parked on the grass, a broken chain link fence and greeted by 3 sharp faces that looked like homeless, crack addicts and their pit bull tied up with a yellow nylon rope. It honestly felt like we were driving into the slums, I have never in my life felt like that or seen that, especially anywhere near my home. wow. something changed. I suddenly wasn't sure. We talked about it and both had mixed feelings.  We called the police, did some research and found out that there was nothing really wrong with the street, not a higher crime rate or anything just a poor street amongst moderate to wealthy homes. The police said "that's just what you get in the downtown of a city, a mix of everything.." we went home thinking, praying, trying to get an answer. We saw what they were seeing, but thought if our children aren't in danger and it is just poor amongst a  good area i think we are OK with that, its no worse that where we live now (as there is some gov housing close to us, but no problems).. We decided continued forward still feeling this is our home. We prayed specifically, "God if this is not our home, show us a clear NO, and stop this all before it starts."  All night I was up, dreaming, envisioning our life there, our new home. We have a really great agent, and we knew that he would get us this house. We woke up the next day and found out there was another offer and that we would be a bidding war. We felt confident in our agent, knowing he would get us this place and that everything has worked so smoothly God had to be all over this. if it is ours, we will get it.  The day went on and I kept thinking about the house, the area, the street behind it, asking questions, finding out as much info as I can. Luke and I still talking, praying asking God to give us a real straight answer. At about 3pm Luke emailed me to inform me of some interesting possible changes happening that would effect our entire life as we know it.. (Without getting into it,) creating a great risk and uncertainty to our future, that could lead to it being a very stupid decision to purchase a house when we have no clue what is about to happen in our life..  Luke felt torn, stressed unsure what to do but it was so clear to me, this is our No. We have prayed for a very clear answer and this is it. Timing in an amazing thing and with timing like that You can't not listen.. After giving it more thought and prayer, Luke also having a hard time coming to that, knew it was right. wow. our home.... our perfect, beautiful, what we thought was right, what we thought was ours, what we thought was God  home...  is not our home.. HIS timing is perfect, and we have to trust Him with that. We were told what we were told to stop us from making a wrong decision. I don't know why this place was so perfect, or why we felt so much peace or why things all lined up so perfectly for it not to be ours. Maybe it was to show us something, to show us our heart of what we really love, desire and where we are ok to compromise (like it being a semi). Maybe it is a test to see if we are listening to even warning signs. Does he have to shout NOOOOO in your face in an audible voice or is He  subtly showing you and you have the decision to choose to or choose not to see.

Letting go.... This is hard for us to let go. not just for us and this house, but  I think for all of us.  Let going of your dreams that you think are right for you, or what you think they look like. I believe God places desires in our hearts but sometimes his vision of it is much different than ours.  I think His version of our His vision often isn't what we think, and  can look like something we didn't expect. But you know what? His way is even better in the end. He not only wants to meet our needs and give us our hearts desire but he wants to surprise us with  the largest and even the smallest things that make it even better.  I remember when we found our townhouse, we went through something similar to this, even purchasing another house, and it falling apart, we were crushed. When we were fed up and not looking anymore our current home came as a surprise. We loved everything about it, it actually was perfect for us in every way at the time.  We bought in the winter we moved in the spring, excited and full of Joy we moved in on the weekend that the Sand-cherry tree in backyard was in full blossom and  gorgeous french lilacs  bloomed and filled our house with their beautiful aroma (we had no idea they were even in the back yard and for anyone that knows these 2 they don't have long bloom periods, or even blooming periods that happen at the same time of year). He had orchestrated them to happen at the same time, that very weekend to speak to my heart.  I had never told anyone that these were my 2 favourite, that I would love these in my garden, that they make me smile, that their scent fills my heart but God knew and wanted to show me that he was listening and that he knows me more than anyone, and that this was all part of His plan. He not only wanted to give what we want, need, love, but surprise me and remind me how special I am to Him.

I am reminded of a song i cannot get enough of right now, it sits with me downloading into my heart.
Love came down, by Brian Johnson

If my heart is overwhelmed and I cannot hear Your voice
I’ll hold on to what is true though I cannot see
If the storms of life they come and the road ahead gets steep
I will lift these hands in faith
I will believe

I remind myself of all that You’ve done
And the life I have because Your Son

Love came down and rescued me
Love came down and set me free
I am Yours I am forever Yours
Mountain high or valley low
I sing out remind my soul
That I am Yours I am forever Yours

When my heart is filled with hope
and every promise comes my way
When I feel Your hands of grace rest upon me

Staying desperate for You God
Staying humbled at Your feet
I will lift these hands and praise
I will believe

I remind myself of all that You’ve done
And the life I have because Your Son

Love came down and rescued me
Love came down and set me free
I am Yours I am forever Yours
Mountain high or valley low
I sing out remind my soul
That I am Yours I am forever Yours

I am Yours
I am Yours
All my days
I am Yours

I am Yours, I'm Yours forever

It somehow gives me peace and comfort, like a big warm hug surrounding you. knowing I am His, he is watching out for me, protecting me, guiding my paths. His timing and plan and purpose and design are perfect the way He has designed them. He has my perfect house, he has it all worked out, and is taking care of us. We can't rush his timing and His plan for us is better than I could ever create for myself. I just have to trust..

Monday, February 6, 2012

Day:...... uggghhh what day are we on? Chronicles of a Toddler and his big boy bed..

I must admit I have lost track of time and not really sure what day we are on... I think 14? We are somewhere around the 2 weeks mark.  It has been a blur of up and down, middle of the night and early wake ups, exhaustion, sickness, just a tough situation all around. But we are moving forward. Jack hasn't been showing interest in the Biiiig Bed for a couple of days but has preferred the toddler bed/crib. I think he feels safe in the toddler bed/crib, its cozy and what he is used to. I still have 4 - 5 months to get him completely out of there so I don't think I am too worried.

 The process of changing beds has been interesting, challenging, and a real test in understanding  how to establish boundaries with a 2 year old, strong willed, little person and stretch and push for us to learn to be good parents that are loving but in control. It has been a stand off of the battle of the wills at times (as he is very stubborn like his mommy) and the most enjoyable experience at others. (Like Saturday night when he told us night night and went upstairs and put himself to bed, or all the times he snuggles up so tight and goes down so easily.) For the first time I have felt since he was born, 'wow, THIS is what parenting is really about. This baby stuff is nothing, I really haven't seen any thing yet, THIS is what makes your skin thicker.'  lol.

So we continue on our journey. The challenge at the moment doesn't seem to be going down, it is staying down. We have a touch of a night wanderer (which his mommy was, my mom once found me on top of the fridge curled up asleep at his age), and though the upstairs is locked up he can't go to far, he hasn't figured out how long to stay in bed yet. Prior to this if he woke in the middle of the night he would roll around in his crib then go back to sleep. But now b/c he can get out, he gets out! So we get 4:30, the 5:30, then 6:30 then 7:30 up. As in to say 'Is it time yet?' So the returning him to bed, tell him "its still nighttime little man", kiss him on the head and tuck him back in is frequent in our house at the moment. I still feel we should be putting the pressure gate up each night, for him to start to get the hint on his own. I'm sure it will come, I'm just hoping that he settles and goes back to his long naps and great night time sleep habits.

Friday, February 3, 2012

insanity, Day 12

Today is a good day but it feels like insanity. My little man has had a stuffy nose and for those following, graduating to big boy bed, testing his limits, and ours... lol.  He woke up this morning, bright and early. (what is with the 5:30 am!!) its kind of killing us as the last what should be 2 hours of our sleep is waking with a small person and consistently putting him back to sleep will 7:30 with 15 min intervals of sleep ourselves. It takes 28 days to create or break a habit. I'm hoping the habit he creates is not getting in and out of bed starting at 5:30 am.

Today is insanity. Little man has just gone down and i am exhausted! yesyerday I spent all day alone editing a recent wedding (post coming soon!) and I need to just recoup and relax. Jack and I have had a blast this morning, but in the last hour i just haven't been able to keep up. i made french toast stars and hearts with bananas and strawberries this morning, and then had a morning of colouring, hotwheels, playing cars, reading, tickling, jumping, all the things I love to do. But when it comes to nap times which used to be so easy it has felt very hard lately. I'm tired and baby is growing and getting bigger, taking more energy from me and I am actually feeling myself run out but the time nap rolls around. Like I need a nap myself. Today he went down easy, seemed to want to nap in his crib but at night wants to sleep in the big bed. That's fine with me, whatever is good with him. He got up once asking where his pillow was,  I found it and asked him to get in bed, he got in on his own, i put the covers on his and he laid down and went to sleep.  I sit here just zonked! I want to take a shower, feel clean and refreshed but want to sleep and be lazy and watch last nights episode of Greys. I know there is a lot of work for me that needs to be done but I just need a break.

As i look around the house looks in shambles, I have been nursing a sick baby to health, trying to fight a cold myself, the dog got spayed 2 days ago and trying to keep her calm is a full time job so she doesn't rip her stitches open and just cleaning and picking up over and over the same things I just can't keep up. Today I think I will just let the tornado of insanity take over and surrender.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Day 10: Chronicles of toddler and his new big boy bed..

Day 10: Thank God Jack did sleep the night last night we all needed it. This morning was an early start, 6:15 am he woke up. Little did i know that every morning that he wakes this early and Luke puts him right back to bed. He sleeps for another hour and then gets up. I thought Luke had left already for the morning as our little puppy is getting spayed today and he was driving her in. when Jack woke up he sounded so awake, not cranky but wanted downstairs and didn't want any part of climbing into bed with me so I could catch some more zzz's. Grumpily (I am not a morning person) I stumbled downstairs to find Luke standing in the kitchen, keeping the dog quiet hoping that Jack would go down and had a sippy ready me milk to give to our little guy. He told me i should put him right back into bed, but now I'd lost my window of oppertunity and he was already watching toopy and binoo in our bed.

So a bit of a rough start for me, I hate getting up super early it seems to set me on the wrong path for the day and poor little guy, a rough start for him too, sinuses are full on pouring out of his face, eyes are dripping and had a fever last night. He stayed quiet this morning just wanting to watch tv and snuggle, but started to show signs of exhaustion very early, getting frustrated and crying, having fits over nothing, whining and finally I just decided he needs to go down, he's tired and sick. poor guy. Nap today is a success, no fight, just sleep, but I would be the same if i weren't feeling well too. Now for me to wake up and finally get out of this morning funk!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Day 8 & 9: Chronicles of toddler and his new big boy b...

Day 8: what seemed to be a smooth easy bedtime, I was relieved, seeing as I haven't been sleeping well lately and this whole change over with earlier wake ups, painful put downs and shorter naps is really draining the only energy I have. I rest in bed and read a magazine to fall asleep and finally around 12am I can feel my body giving up so I turn off my light and close my eyes for some much needed rest.  I crash in out bed but after a quick random, strange and disturbing dream I find myself wide awake. uggghhhh go  to sleeep!!! finally as I'm drifting out again, i hear thump, bump bump bump. our little man made his way out of bed at 12:30am. Luke so wonderfully got up and put him back to bed. then 15 min later, thump, bump bump bump, oh jeez. are we going to finally have THAT night..?  and so began the series of up and down for the next 3 hours, the 2 of of swapping together. persistence and patience. persistence and patience... finally at 3am, knowing that Luke had to get SOME sleep, I went took him back to bed one last time and decided to stay in his room in the 2nd bed on the floor b/c the problem was is that you could tell he was trying to sleep. He would go down for 15- 20 minutes then be complaining and get up crying about wanting to go night night, something was bothering him. He has cut 3 of his 2 year old molars in the last 10 days and I think he is working on the last one.  i wasn't sure what was up but he wasn't being defiant, and I felt compassion, I know what a pain it is when your body thinks that the beginning of your sleep was just a nap and then you are stuck wide awake all night. So at first i tried to snuggle into the bed on the floor with him, maybe he would be able to fall asleep in my arms but he cried. "maaaammmmmyyy, i seep, niight niight (he whimpered), big bed." (what he refers to as his bed since we changed over to big boy bed). So I put him in his bed, turned on more worship music, snuggled him in with his blankee and laid down  and pet his back and head for a while. I laid back down on the floor bed and began to pray over him while I laid there, over his sleep and protection over his dreams and that he just settles and rests. It stuck, it was 3:30am we had finally had our last up. That is until 6 am when poor little guy woke up in a fright crying. His sleep was disturbed all night (well all 2.5 hours past), up and down, whimpering not sleeping well, so there wasn't much sleep for him and not any for me.  Wow i felt like absolute ass. It can't be time to wake up yet. Luke came to help knowing I'd been up all night with him and told me to go to our room. He took Jack and put him back to sleep and let me sleep till he was leaving for work.  What a wonderful husband i have. And I turned out to be right, something was wrong with little man, he sinuses are all backed up today and had a low grade fever. poor little guy must not have been feeling great.

You know I forgot all nighters, it has been so long since Jack woke up in the night even once that I realize how much baby # 2 night feedings will wipe the floor with me at first until my body gets used to it again. Today I just couldn't get it together after that. I was a weepy mess and on my way driving in an unfamiliar area, I got pulled over by a cop as i didn't know I was driving in a 50 zone. I haven't had a ticket in nearly 10 years.  I burst out crying, a total mess, I was exhausted, overwhelmed, late for my appt, upset for this ticket b/c we are totally broke, and unknown to me it was community zone which meant double the fines. He told me it was nearly a 300$ ticket and 4 points. I didn't know I was speeding,  I was driving 75. I sputtered out in my tears some kind of plea of mercy, what a horrible last 12 hours it had been and I really didn't know I was speeding, I thought it was 70. He left checked my record etc and came back, and had mercy for me, he told me to try to relax, was kind and he was only giving me a min fine of 10 over, no points and a 65$ ticket (poor cop probably had no idea what to do with an emotional, exhausted, pregnant woman, full out weeping in front of his face).  I thanked him for not crucifying me and drove off.

Exhaustion is an interesting thing. I have been running on empty for a while but with sleep I can balance all the business of my life, projects I have to do or commitments I have made, chasing after a busy toddler, growing a baby and somewhat manage these insane hormones that have come along with this pregnancy all with a mostly level head. but without sleep i am a blubbering mess that is instantly hopeless and drowning. I'm not even sure where I'm going with this I'm just getting it out b/c I need to get it out. All i know is I need God. In the times I feel like that, he is he only one that can make me feel better and remind me I am strong.... Something I remembered 3 hours later after bawling all day. I am Strong. even when I feel weaker than I have ever felt. there is a warrior in there.
Oh please God, help me when #2 comes.

Day 9: Naptime: I was hopeful when Jack fell asleep in the car after our dr appt..  drove home he'd been asleep for nearly 45 min, I knew I could be screwed but there was no keeping him awake any longer, he was as exhausted as me. I prayed for more grace. He transferred well and slept for an other 1h45min when we got home. enough time for me to tidy, prep dinner and rest.

Day 9: Bedtime: he goes down with ease and has been sleeping for almost 1 h. Please God have mercy on us. Let him sleep through the night and wake up at 8 am.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Day 7: Chronicles of toddler and his new big boy bed..

Day 7: This morning little man was up, quiet as a mouse he snuck into our room and climbed into our bed at 6:45am. He was so cute trying to be quiet but dying to talk to us and get love and hugs and snuggles and wanting to play. I must say, i am loving this new wake up. it sure beats the alarm clock.

Today the afternoon nap happened in the car due to church running late... so we couldn't test out the usual afternoon insanity that nap time has become. This evening he was so tired from a short nap that he just collapsed in bed 1/2 hour before bedtime and didn't even want to read books. Ahh little man, you are so sweet.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Whats inside mommy's tummy?

Cutest book. My mom purchased in a little shop in Orangeville called "Nurtured" if you haven't been there check it out, or join their fb page. Mommies with #2 on the way, this is a great little book to explain what is going on in Momm'y tummy!

Day 6: Chronicles of toddler and his new big boy bed..

Day 6... but only day 3 for nap time. Night time we seemed to have conquered, he doesn't even try to make up excuses or get out, he just goes to sleep. But nap time on the other hand seems to be tough..
I think the problem lies in that I work part time. So 1/2 the time he is with me and the other 1/2 he is at a sitter. There haven't been enough consistent days with us for him to know that nap time you go to sleep with out a fight and you sleep in the bed! as soon as he starts to get it, the next day he is somewhere else. So there is not a consistent routine there that he knows he can rely on. This morning he woke up something awful like 6:30, uggh, and woke up once last night. We tried having quiet time in our bed, we tried just letting him wander upstairs, and turn on the lights dim in his room so he could play but nope, uggh he just wanted downstairs, while shaking the gate  and crying/complaining at the stairs Luke let me sleep and got up with him.

Luke is in his last course of his MBA so after a while down he went to do his work while I played with jack, but with such an early rise he was just out of sorts and didn't know what he wanted. Crying and fussy I decided even though it was earlier than normal and hoping to push him till 1 to go for a nap so I know he'd go down smooth again, by 11 am I knew it was already time. So off we went with the regular routine, brought him up to read stories in mommy's bed and i was open to him perking up and us playing longer he just started to get worse, so by the 10th book and up and down the stairs for milk, then waffles, then noodles, then cheese, which he threw all on the floor and didn't really want. We finished one last book and headed to bed. Out came the water works, upset about everything and bed and soother and blankets and dog and nothing was right for him. I tried to calm him down but nothing would work.  I find when I'm exhausted (was up till 1:30, then awaken by jack at 2:30 then again at 6/6:30 and growing a baby and not sleeping well at all) I just have a shorter fuse on patience. After the 7th out of bed and returning him, I could hear Luke downstairs and asked him to help. So then it still continued. The boy that goes donw so easy for his daddy did the same thing he had been doing to mommy, back luke with patience cont to return him to bed. After a short but LONG 10 minutes Jack gave up and climbed into bed himself and went to sleep.

So we are still on our way, hopefully he will get it soon. I know patience and persistence are key. I hope nap times get better, well they are getting better but I hope they are as good and bedtime soon enough and that he starts to nap as long as he was when he was in the crib. We seemed to have shortened to 2h instead of the great 3 - 3.5 h we were getting every day. Which right now just doesn't seem like enough of a break, but its better than nothing.  anyway, off reorganize my closet. In great need of  a dejunk in my life. 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Day 4: Chronicles of toddler and his new big boy bed..

Last night went very smoothly, I went out with some some girlfriends for some "drinks" and Luke put him down the bed, he said he only got out once and Luke sent him back, he didn't wake up after that, just slept right through and woke up this morning at 7:15 sharp!

Day 4: Nap Time #2... Well yesterday was so hard that I was sure it couldn't get much worse. After a morning of playing and taking  him around to stores, getting some new shoes, and lunch at "Donalds" he came home to the expected naptime..  i tried a slightly different approach instead of just putting him down at the regular time, between 12 - 12:30 I waited till I knew he would be really tired (hoping he would just crash and not argue) and put him to bed at 1. It took him a bit of convincing to get there and fussy time during reading books, but after he realized he was indeed going to bed no negotiations, he sat down, read a book in my arms, I put him in his bed, gave him his dirty dogs, and soother, put his blankee on and rubbed his belly. He got sleepy, out I went and in under 10 minutes I was done, he didn't try to come out and just went to sleep. I'm so glad this time was easier. I hope that he settles into this quickly. I love that he loves to sleep and always has been so good at it. Unfortunately about 20 min after he went to sleep, he started to stir, woke up and began to cry. I wondered if i just leave him, he might go back down, as this what i would have done before when he was in the crib... I think it worked. He is quiet now, so I think he is sleeping. He hasn't tried to escape, he hasn't come to the door and he hasn't made any excuses. Just went to sleep.

Night Time: dang it the kid just  read books and went to sleep. no fight, no fuss. sweet dreams sweetie!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

2 years old!!!

 My little baby is growing up. I can't believe how much he has grown, how smart and hilarious he is, and how much joy he brings us. He is amazing. Every night we creep to his room and just stare at him, smiling like goofy kids at christmas over their great present. He is so big now, nearly filling his bed, wow, where did the time go? It doesn't feel long ago at all that I was holding him in my arms as a newborn snuggling him so tight.

A friend of mine recently asked me to photograph her daughters first birthday. What stood out to me were the details, she created the most incredible environment for this party and it got my wheels turning for my own little man. It was his birthday on Saturday, he is 2. I can't believe it!  We threw him a Birthday Party for him on Saturday, nothing big just a few close friends and their babies and our family. I couldn't think of a more perfect theme than Sesame Street b/c Jack Loves it! He knows all the characters and talks about them all the time, last night he even woke up from a dream talking about Ernie and Bert and Big Bird, it was adorable.. I knew that even though it was going to be a small party i wanted to do all in the details!! After weeks of crafting, cutting, making ernie and berts and cookie monsters, flags, cutting hundreds of circles (which was actually a stress reliever) lots of creative gathering of thoughts it all came together and I must say I am pretty proud. He was so happy when he came down that morning, he talked all about the decorations and  balloons and ernie and bert and elmo!  All those hours were totally worth it, just to see the smile on his face. Many sweet new things happened this weekend, just to name a couple, when asked how old he is he yells, "I TWOO" and holds out his forefinger and thumb, he sang Happy Birthday to the piano in key so soft and so sweet as he played along hitting the keys with grandma (we have never heard him sing a whole song before, it was adorable), he asked all weekend to sing skiminarinkeedinkeedink, row row row your boat, the wheels on the bus and head and shoulders (with all the actions),  and after much climbing in and out of the crib he is very proud of his new big boy bed we gave him last night, able to get in and out on his own. He is such a sweet little guy. I love to watch him grow even though I'm sad when I pack away each new item of clothing that doesn't fit him. You are the best. Happy Birthday my little man!!!

Tickles in the morning!

he woke up to a living room of balloons! he loved them, what fun!

Oscar - the garbage man (not the grouch, heehee)

some details... numbers confetti on tables
sesame street party isn't complete without bert and ernie! this was some fun cutting and pasting, I make a number of characters just by cutting out shapes from construction paper and pasting them together  like this!

loot bags, thanks for coming!

I saw this on a blog for sesame street party so cute, had to do it too, what a great idea for a snack for kids!

and so  I made some monster cookies too.

just to add a little colour to the table, pilsner glasses of jellybeans!

my cute little guy opening presents withe daddy
he was very excited about this bowling set.

and how can an artist mommy resist from buying her little boy who loves to draw and paint his very first easle.

Happy Birthday Jack, Love Elmo!

these took too long to skewer each one but they looked great.

my mom piped the letters of each kids name on their own cookie, and of course elmo is a must.

being tickled :) what a cutie, he had a lot of fun, playing and laughing, he is so great.
i wish my dinner table has this many yummy things on it every day. 

my cutie, wandering amongst the madness.

and how great are these!? Cookie monster and elmo cupcakes, I piped these all, my cookie monsters started to melt but were still cute, my elmos came out great and kept their shape.  I loved them and so did the kids.

the cupcake tower

everytone enjoying the toys

and Jack's very own 'Dorothy' just like Elmo has, a gift form his Auntie Carrie and Uncle Matt.

my little 2 year old man. He moves so much its often hard to get a picture of him. Here Daddy is giving him a massage" (jack comes up to you and asks you for a massage and when you massage his shoulders he laughs uncontrollably) what a sweetie.

good day, good friends.  i had made all these little flags and hung them throughout the house.

ohhhh present time, Lots of Thomas the Train, he LOVES trains.

just eating some elmo cupckes. jack ate one "eye" and decided he didn't want it anymore. ha!

being silly on the stairs

my cute little nephew Devin.

welcoming at the front door as you come in! 

hundred of handcut and sewn flags and circles, that was A LOT of work, but well worth it.

heehee just love these cupcakes!

Happy Birthday my little special guy. You are the best!