Thursday, September 30, 2010
...here's a few from the other day when Sawyer and Trinity and I were hanging out.
Gotta get in that tummy time! Sawyer has absolutely no use for rolling over.
He sits so well already! He only topples over when he's tired or trying really hard to grab something out of reach.
Trinity getting her lovey time in. That girl would just smooch Sawyer all the time if I let her!
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
I'm amazed at what I got done yesterday looking back now at the day I had, but blogging just wasn't up there in my list of priorities, sorry! I did however managed to do all my dishes, 3 loads of laundry, grocery shop, put it ALL away (which is a feat in itself for me!), bake bread, make 2 kinds of muffins and take care of a sick baby who wanted to be held LOTS! He's decidedly less sick today, thank goodness and has had lots of smiles and happy screeches today instead of crying and yelling most of the day.
Anyway, here's my list for the week. BTW, I'm trying to plan all of my October meals before October so that I can do one big grocery shop for meat and non-perishables and then just buy perishables each week. Any ideas for inexpensive suppers? I know they're out there, sometimes I just can't think of them. Ideas would be great!
- enchiladas, mexican rice, veg + dip (meal carried over since I was away last week)
- turkey burgers, fruit cups
- asian flank steak, rice, stirfry veggies (I splurged on water chestnuts and baby corn, Yummy!)
- veg subs, soup
- meatloaf, baked potatos, cauliflower and cheese sauce
- broccoli cheddar soup, bread
- pizza, salad
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Every blogger deserves a little vacation time! This weekend Mark took Riker on a boys only camping trip and Trinity, Sawyer and I went to Mark's parents place for a few sleeps. Sawyer is just learning that people other than his immediate family can be cool to hang out with so we wanted to help him with that. Thursday he did great and had lots of smiles for Amma and Pa. He even let Amma snuggle him for a while. Friday was pretty good too. Unfortunately Sawyer had a cough which morphed into a fevered, snot filled, coughing miserable existence. By Saturday he only wanted Mommy and wouldn't eat unless he was given Tylenol an hour prior. The poor kid couldn't breathe, I felt so badly for him!
So Saturday I took him in to Children's Hospital just to make sure that we weren't dealing with anything more severe. After waiting only 2 hours (that's really not bad for Children's) the doctor said that it's just a flu and to expect it to get a bit worse before it got better and to give Sawyer tylenol if that helps him to eat. So on the way home we picked up baby Tylenol, saline drops and an aspirator for the little guy in hopes of making him a bit more comfortable. He's doing ok, but he's certainly not his usual self.
Here's hoping he gets lots better in the next couple of days!
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Last Saturday I went out for dinner with a bunch of ladies from our church and had a friend introduce me to a great website for Mommies... www.babysteals.com
Companies can list an item on there for 50% or more off and the race is on to see if you can buy it before it's sold out! If you need it that is!
The other day a great item came up.
They're called Dapper Snappers and they might just be the answer to a little problem I've been having.
Sawyer got so many awesome gifts and hand-me-downs in the way of clothes but being in the 25th percentile for weight and 75th for height the poor kid really has a hard time fitting pants! In the 3-6 month size we had one super cute pair of pants and an adorable pair of shorts that he never did wear because they were not adjustable and his waist was at least 2 inches too small for them. I'm having the same problem again with 6-12 month pants.
Enter Dapper Snapper! (which I'll hopefully receive next week) You just loop it around the belt loops in the back of the pants and voila!
Adjustable pants! I'm really hoping this works because I'd hate to see a stack of pants go to waste.
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
For a few years now I've really felt like I'd like to join a Ladies Bible Study, but one thing or another has always kept me from doing it...Riker being in Kindergarten half-days, babysitting other people's kids, Trinity being in Kindergarten half-days...now this year there are no excuses! I have a lovely little man who is completely portable, my other 2 are gone from 8am-4pm, I own a Bible (or 2 or more!) and I can read, study and talk. Yep, no excuses!
I discovered that some ladies at our church were also interested and were planning to start one for moms with little ones. Perfect! I signed up, we started our first one by just having coffee and chatting about where we wanted to go with this Bible Study thing and what might work with the gong show of kids that we have there.
It sounds like a study of Philippians is the plan and we'll be using a study guide using the theme of Becoming a Woman After God's Own Heart. I've read the full book before, but never the study that follows Philippians. I'm really looking forward to digging into some scripture and the sharing and discussions that with come out of it (hopefully!).
This is a first for me!
Monday, September 20, 2010
Our tradition around the Westman house is that on Saturdays we take about 2 hours out of our morning and do a thorough cleaning of the house. It was my idea I know but regardless, I have now come to hate Saturdays. I've come to the conclusion that since I'm only home with one itty-bitty person now who is (supposed to) napping twice a day, maybe, just maybe I could do at least the majority of the cleaning during the week. Then our Saturdays would be gloriously free of cleaning. Wouldn't that be nice?
This morning I woke up and starting thinking of all the things I needed to do today, not even cleaning things, just everyday things and Monday things and I wanted to curl up in a ball and go back to sleep! Instead I made breakfast and packed lunches for the older 2, then managed to eat a yogurt while Mark took the kids to the bus and went for a run. When he came back he asked if I wanted to go for a walk (which I've been trying to do most mornings) and I very grumpily put on some decent clothes and went. My mood changed on my walk though, something about the combination of fresh air, our beautiful path surrounded by gorgeous trees that are all changing colour. I started thinking about my day again and finally figured it out...the house was not going to clean itself and the groceries were not going to magically appear in the fridge and cupboards. I was going to have to do it myself!
Quite the revelation, don't you think?
So, when I got home I had some breakfast, put the small one down for a nap and I got to it. A little here, a little there a little watching Chef at Home while I folded laundry (nothing like bribing yourself!) and before I knew it I'd done a load of dishes, a load of laundry, sorted all the laundry, tidied a few rooms, grocery shopped and I even squeezed in a simply lovely lunch with Mark (and Sawyer) at Subway.
While at lunch I mentioned to Mark how I was amazed that a little self-talk went so far with me and that not only did I get all of this stuff done, but I had a good time doing it. We discussed how it's really important to not just have big goals and congratulate yourself for reaching those, but it's important to have little goals on the way to those big goals and to celebrate those too! So we patted ourselves and each other on the back for our goals that we met today. And you know what? It felt really good.
Sunday, September 19, 2010
Why I never take pictures of these events I'll never know! Anyway...
Today I did something new and super-fun! One of my friends asked me a while ago if I would teach her to cook a few things. She and her soon to be hubby want to eat at home more and in restaurants less and yet he works and she's studying to be a teacher, busy lives! So we set a date and I asked her what she wanted to cook. She said either stew or chili so since stew was on my menu for the week anyway (actually I think it was a carry over meal that I never made the week before) that's what we made. Oh, and biscuits!
It was fun teaching her little things like the best and easiest way to cut an onion. How to sear meat. Why we put the onions in the pan after the meat. What order to add ingredients. How to tell when a potato is done. How to thicken the stew. Then we made biscuits and I let her in on my little secret when it comes to biscuit making.
Want to know what it is?
ok, here you go...
I use Bisquick.
Yep, I do.
I can make them from scratch but I like Bisquick better. It's easy and they taste great. There is no shame here, just yummy biscuits!
And the stew? It was divine! We had just enough to send home with her for a nice little lunch tomorrow.
So fun, if I could do anything for a job right now, I'd seriously start a cooking school for everyday women who want to learn how to cook. That would be a great job!
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Sometimes as stay-at-home moms we get bogged down by all the little things (and people) around us and we lose our perspective.
Tonight, Mark gave me a HUGE gift...he put Sawyer to bed. Oh, the beauty of bottle feeding, Mark could do it himself! So out I went and went out with some ladies for dinner leaving my little 6 month old to work it out with Daddy.
And I didn't look back.
It was glorious! I have not eaten and talked and laughed like that in a while and it felt SO good! I was sitting close to the middle of the table so as soon as conversation would lag on one side of me, I just turned my head and joined the conversation on the other side of me. And oh we laughed! I seriously felt sorry for the other people in the restaurant! But it was wonderful and I wouldn't have changed it for the world.
Today I actually had not had a happy day. I was tired, I was negative and I was not gracious with my two older wonderful kids. But after such a lovely evening, I came home with renewed energy, looking forward to seeing them tomorrow and walking through our day together.
Thank you Mark and thank you Ladies, I needed that so much! Laughter really is the BEST medicine!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Sometimes it's really hard to live far away from your parents. I know that there are many people who live even farther from theirs and really I'm very blessed to see mine as often as I do, but that aside...I really miss my Mom and Dad. The other day I was on the phone with my Mom and Sawyer was being particularly animated. It just made me wish that I could teleport them here so that they could enjoy him first hand. I'm working on getting some more video of him on here, but in the meantime, here's a few pics...
Loving his time in his circle of neglect...oh I mean his exersaucer!
Learning to sit up and seeing his toy in a whole new way!
His favorite way to fall asleep, with the blanket from Nana and Papa!
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
I'm not sure if it's the quiet days with just Sawyer and I in the house or if I've got a touch of baby blues still, but I feel weird lately. Today especially. Kind of sad, but mostly I just have a lot of negative self talk going on in my head. With Sawyer being weaned now and my body starting to return to "normal" I've been wanting to work on getting more active and eating healthier. Every time I think about it though this mean person in my head starts yakking about how "I shouldn't even bother, I'll never keep it up, we can't afford so many fruits and veggies, I'll always be less healthy than so and so, it's gonna be so hard to exercise in winter, it's too overwhelming"...blah, blah, blah. It's the same thing I've been hearing when I think about how to get out of the house, "no family centre will be as good as your old one, there's nothing in this area, you won't fit in, you have no friends here, you wouldn't really get to visit anyway, you're too socially awkward, you're too shy"...again, blah, blah, blah. I know what I have to do to combat it, I know that I need to replace each sentence with the truth when it comes up. But I'm tired, and I feel down.
Maybe I need a nap, sometimes that helps.
Anyone else get this?
Monday, September 13, 2010
We all know that I love food, that's a given. And I love cooking. And I love to plan my menu. BUT I don't like to have to make something on a certain night just because it's on my menu for that day. When I make a weekly menu, I write down 6 meals (one day is leftover night), shop for all the ingredients, and then I can choose from those 6 meals depending on what I feel like cooking that day.
One of my Facebook/ Blog friends asked what I'm cooking this week, so here is goes...
- Lentil tacos (with whole wheat tortillas, lettuce, tomato, grated carrot, green pepper, salsa and sour cream)
- Eggs, toast, turkey breakfast sausages and fruit cups (made up of banana, apple, orange and grapes all cut up)
- tuna noodle casserole and a tossed salad
- stew and biscuits
- roasted chicken pieces with mashed potatos, gravy, roasted carrots and beets
- vegetarian pizza, veggies and dip
- spaghetti with chunky vegetable sauce, tossed salad
That's it! Chicken is on the menu for today because I have afternoon company and wanted something that I can just salt and pepper and throw into the oven. Friday will probably be pizza and then we'll have either a game night or a movie night depending on how tired I am that day!
What are you making for suppers this week?
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Mark posed an interesting question to me today while we were getting ready for church...
he asked me, on a scale from 1-10, how lazy do you think I am? 1 being so lazy that I need to be spoon-fed, and 10 being not lazy at all (Personally I would have made 10 on the scale super-lazy and 1 not lazy at all, but whatever).
Hmm, I thought, "I think I'd put you at about a 7".
"Really?" he asked, "because I thought I'd be around a 5-6".
"Well, I'd put myself around a 5-6 so that's why I figured that you'd be a 7," I said.
"What do you think life would look like for us if we were 10's?" Mark asked.
"I'm not sure", I said, "personally I find the thought of that totally exhausting!"
As we talked more about it we realized that more than likely it was just as exhausting being lazy because you are constantly procrastinating on things so then there's the stress of having it all on your mind plus the things you will need to do next looming before you.
Hmmm, a point to ponder this week as I plan out my "to do's".
Saturday, September 11, 2010
Okay, I'm sorry, I know I didn't blog yesterday, I opted for sleep instead. Mark asked me if there was anything that would make me want to blog before bed. He even offered me Starbucks coffee in the morning! No go. I had a headache, a backache, I was tired and Sawyer's behaviour was telling me that it may be a short night. But I'm here now and that's all that matters right? :o)
The first day of school our kids came home with fundraising stuff. THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL! I couldn't believe it! Magazine subscriptions- no thanks. New Bothwell cheese- no thanks. Show and Save cards (and books)- yes please! And a box of Nestle Chocolate Bars- YES!
We thought though, you've got to be kidding, we live 2 1/2 blocks from a dollar store where you can buy these same chocolate bars for 69 cents. The school wants us to sell them for $3. There's no way. Let me just say, there is amazing selling power in 2 really cute kids! Riker and Trinity would approach our neighbors and honestly, as soon as they opened their mouths (especially Trinity since she still has trouble with so many words) people just melted. A few houses bought 2-3 bars! We didn't even do 1/2 of our street and our box was empty. $75 worth of chocolate sold!
One neighbor gave the kids $1 tip and one gave them 25 cents, so Mark took them to the dollar store afterward and let them each pick out a chocolate bar for a reward. Sweet!
Thursday, September 09, 2010
This week Sawyer and I started something new, I started him on formula. What a week it's been! He's been a little trouper and taken it so well. He drinks between 4-6 ounces which is a big change from before, I was only producing 3-3 1/2 ounces and that was both sides combined. He used to be on a 2.5 -3 hour schedule but now we're trying to get to a 4 hour schedule. The biggest change though this week? He's no longer swaddled! I can't believe that part is over. A couple of nights I was seriously getting up every hour or LESS because he needed to be re-swaddled. I couldn't take it anymore! Now I put him to sleep on his tummy. He's awesome at lifting his little head and torso, so I'm not worried. Now if I can just get him to sleep a bit more soundly at night and soothe himself back to sleep we'll be all good.
He's growing up so much too! This week he's started sitting more, with the nursing pillow around him, and playing with toys. He just loves it and grins and babbles the whole time. Today I held him so he could sit up in the bathtub too and he couldn't get the smile off his face! I love that he loves bathtime, he actually starts grinning and cooing as soon as he sees the bathroom! Sawyer has been trying more and more foods too. He loves carrots mixed with parsnips, applesauce, oatmeal, rice cereal, potatoes, bread and today, pears. When I feed him I've been saying "num-num" to him and it's the cutest thing, now HE says it!
(BTW-Please, I know that some people out there are opinionated about breastfeeding or would love to give me some well-meaning advice about what I could do/could have done. Please understand that it's my choice and that he's my baby and it's my body. I have my reasons, which I really don't want to discuss on here. I love Sawyer, I do what's best for him (and me) and our feeding times are just as special and loving as always. Thank you for understanding.)
Wednesday, September 08, 2010
This morning Mark and Sawyer and I walked Riker and Trinity to the bus stop,
waited for a bit,
said goodbye, and they were off! Grade 3 and grade 1, wow, that came fast!
Usually the first day of school is a bit emotional for me...not this time. This summer was hard. Busy and hard. Having a newborn in the house, entertaining and playing referee to/for the other 2 made it the most challenging summer of my life. I was SO looking forward to today.
After they got on the bus we walked home, I had breakfast, put Sawyer down for a nap, showered and then checked my email. I looked at the clock, it was only 9:30am and I already felt bored. Oh dear. So, after Sawyer got up and was fed I made lunch for Mark and I, walked to his work to drop his off, visited with 2 of his co-workers for a bit and then Sawyer and I went to do some errands. The errands took all day but included test driving a van which was fun!
It was good to have a quiet day out, just the two of us, but I think if I'm going to fill the hours at home, I'm going to have to fall in love with housework so that I have something to do!
Time to be a stay-at-home-mom in every sense of the word.
Tuesday, September 07, 2010
I had thought to detail our anniversary and what we did and put all the pictures up here, but for some reason I just don't want to.
I will tell you that we spent our anniversary with our kids, which we NEVER do, but since Sawyer is still kind of "tied" to me, that's the way things went this year. We went out for lunch and took food home for supper, we went to the church where we got married and to the Legislature to take some pics. We hung out at the park and walked the trails. All in all a good but exhausting day! Mark and I got huge ice cream treats and watched the finale of LOST in the evening (between pausing to re-wrap Sawyer and put him back to bed).
My favorite part of the day?
Knocking on the door of the church where we got married and asking if we could come inside and see the sanctuary. A very nice man agreed and let us in. When he unlocked the doors to the sanctuary and held them open for us I got such a flashback to 13 years ago and the doors swinging open for me then,
standing there holding my Dad's arm
...my eyes just welled up with tears. I loved our wedding day!
All day we reminisced, it was wonderful to just spend time together and remember and take the time to treasure the years in between.
Monday, September 06, 2010
13 years ago I woke up in the Hotel Fort Garry, put on a beautiful white dress and went to a beautiful church to marry the man of my dreams...
today I woke up next to the man of my dreams, put on whatever was clean and fit, and went to visit the church where we got married...with 3 children in tow...
Pictures to come tomorrow of our celebration day.
Sunday, September 05, 2010
Today I went for a little walk with Sawyer and figured we'd swing by our local Zellers that's closing down and see what deals we could find. I was browsing through a gigantic stack of girl clothes when a lovely elderly lady in a pale pink top and dark slim jeans stopped and said to me, "Do you think this is a good thing to buy for $5?" She held up a medium pink button up top that could have been a shirt or a jacket. "It's a bit big on me", she said, "but I thought I'd wear it with a white t-shirt underneath like a jacket. I really like the tiny slits on the sleeves. Do you think I should buy it?" "I think it would look wonderful on you", I told her with full confidence. She chatted with me for a bit about sales, clothes and Sawyer, wished me a good day and headed to the cash registers with a smile.
That little encounter has just warmed my heart all day. She was such a lovely lady, so friendly and warm and still so beautiful. It's odd, but I get these encounters all the time with people somewhere in the age range of 70-90. I've had full conversations while picking out milk and eggs at Superstore, helped little bent over ladies reach something from the top shelf (they always ask me), and visit with the old men in the line-up for the cashier. Maybe I invite it, I don't know. I do try to smile and show extra courtesy to elderly people, I hope someone will do the same for me someday. I've been known to casually trail elderly men in Superstore because they have such great smelling cologne sometimes! Sometimes I'll hear someone exclaim that they can't find something and I can't help myself, I just have to tell them or show them where it is.
Whatever the reason, I love it. It just makes me smile all day!
Saturday, September 04, 2010
Tonight I was looking for pictures of Mark and I over the years and I came across this one...I had no idea we had this, I must be 9 months pregnant with Trinity here.
I thought the last pic I had pregnant with her was Thanksgiving that year (and she was born November 16th) but this one is obviously later because I'm huge!
Crazy short hair though!
Friday, September 03, 2010
This summer I kept running into people that I'm "friends" with on Facebook, both family and friends. During conversation the person would inevitably mention something about the fact that at least 75% percent of my status' have to do with food (another 20% would be about Mark or the kids and 5% about absolutely nothing in particular). At first this kind of bugged me, but the more I thought about it the more I realized something...I don't put status' about food because I don't know what else to say, I put status' about food because I LOVE IT!
This week I've really been trying to make more food from scratch and to bake more and it's been awesome. One day I really wanted to make a Curry out of chickpeas and spinach but to be honest, I've never really liked my own curry that hasn't had meat in it. It just always tasted like there was an empty hole in the flavours, like a key ingredient was missing. This week I found it! When I was looking online for a few recipes to use as a jumping off point I discovered that some people added not just curry powder to their curry, but garam masala as well. I'd bought some garam masala a while ago but never used it because I had convinced myself that I wouldn't like that combination of spices in everyday food. To me, nutmeg and cinnamon belong in baking, not main dishes. But, a good cook is someone who is willing to take risks, so, I put in in. Oh my goodness, that was it! That's what it was missing!
Later when Mark came home and ate I asked him what he thought. He said it was really good and said that it tasted different than what I've made before. He described the taste the best that he could and I got so excited! I got out my curry powder and garam masala and got him to smell them and explained what I had done differently and the "science" behind it (I had also tried adding a tsp of sugar to offset the acidity of the tomatos. It made it so smooth!). I kept fumbling with the bottles and almost threw the curry powder all over the floor in my excitement.
I think I need to tap into this part of myself more. A few weeks ago Mark came home with the movie Julie and Julia to watch for date night and I just loved it. I could so relate to Julia's excitement for learning to do something new. I'm gonna have to get my hands on her book, I'd love to try some recipes out of there.
Thursday, September 02, 2010
The last few weeks the apple tree in our backyard has been shedding of it's fruit. Since we were on vacation when it started we came home to a pile of rotting apples all over our lawn and our deck. Mark made the kids a deal that if they worked hard and picked all the apples, we would give them a reward. Well they finally finished (I think it took about 2 weeks, they're into taking their time!) and on Saturday we rewarded them by going mini-golfing as a family at U-Putz. U-Putz is a great place here in the city that has year round indoor glow-in-the-dark mini-golfing. The kids LOVED IT! They were fairly easy to please though since neither of them have ever been mini-golfing on anything but Webkinz.com before.
It was super fun to see our clothes glowing our golf balls our putters and yes, they even sell you glow necklaces and bracelets for the kids for an extra 75 cents.
(Mark with his head in the dinosaur's mouth)
I think we may just have to try it again in the dead of winter when there nothing we can do in the frigid -40 weather!
(Sawyer obviously did not want to have his picture taken judging from the score card in front of his face!)
Wednesday, September 01, 2010
This wonderful little 5 1/2 month old baby has got his Mommy turning into a big mush! He's so wonderfully soft, smiley, snuggly, kissy, huggy, and lovey, I just can't help myself. Sawyer has really been responding a lot. He recognizes his family and treats us to smiles and coos and giggles daily. He's still not big on strangers, which made me a little nervous when we went to see a pile of family and friends on a little trip to SK and AB this summer. He did ok though and even treated a select few to his charms.
Here he is sucking up to Papa (my Dad) in Tim Horten's. I'm so glad that he took to my parents well and that they got to enjoy him like we do.
He's really been kicking it up a notch this last week though when he started saying "mamamamama"! Love it!!!
Wow, the summer flew by didn't it? Ours was mostly laid back with a few trips within MB and one out to AB and SK. It's been full of trips to the playground, to 7-11, cooking new things, learning new things, and spending time together...it's been good. I have, regrettably, failed to keep up my blog though. I blame it on Facebook, most of the people who know me and read this blog are also my friends on Facebook and so I just find it easier to do the quick status updates on there and let the ol' blog slide. But no more! Since September can't possibly be too late for Resolutions I'm starting one today...I'm going to try to blog everyday in September. Yup, EVERYDAY! Hold on to your hats, here we go!