Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Reality TV and The Amazing Race

The Amazing Race has long been my favorite reality show out there.  I love it.  There have been along the way a few moments that just make me shake my head.  The kind where I want to shout out: "You are on the Amazing Race people! What were you thinking"
There are a few things that contestants going on the Amazing Race should do before getting to the race and it blows me away that they don't come prepared.
1.  Get in Shape people.  I know I prefer sitting and reading to working out.  But if I ever got that call letting me know I was going to be on the race, you know I would be on that treadmill so fast.  Speed is key and you can't go huffing and puffing up a staircase thinking you are going to win any leg, never mind the race itself.
2. Learn to drive stick.  I don't know how to drive a manual car.  I learned on a automatic and have driven automatic for 20 years.  But I also know that most countries in the world don't rely on automatics.  And cars on the race are usually, if not always stick shift.
3. Learn to swim.  I can't believe how many racers to not know how to swim, or, have a fear of water.  Yet, there is almost always a water challenge.  This I could do.  I am a pretty decent swimmer.
4. Face your fear of heights.  Every race has a height challenge of some sort.  They have parachuted and skydived and ziplined around the world.  I admit this would be my biggest challenge, but I would work at it before the race so it wasn't such a big challenge during.
5.  Mind your manners.  This one really, really bothers me.  There have been some very rude, disrespectful contestants on the race.  You are going around the world, be prepared for things to be different than home.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Kid Who Touches Everything Blog Tour!

If your kids are anything like my kids, they love to get right into their play. They get messy and that's okay. They wash. Unfortunately, kid washing (at least in my house) often leads to me needing to wash out the sink. You can picture it, the trail of dirt and muck leading from the push of the soap dispenser, onto the taps and into the sink. This past month I've had the opportunity to work with Mom Central Canada to help cut out one of those messy trail steps with the new Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System.
Mom Central, on behalf of Lysol, sent us the Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System to test out.  As an added bonus, they asked that we be creative and decorate the dispenser to help them kick off Lysol's exciting decorate your dispenser contest.  Between now and April 8th, they are giving away 21 Mini-Tablets to fans who decorate their dispenser.  Plus, you can save $5 on Lysol No-Touch. 
I sat down with my 3 year old daughter and told her that we needed to be creative and use our imagination to decorate. 
She decided that whatever we did, it needed to be sparkly.
"I love this sparkly ribbon!"
Between my daughter's sparkly ideas and my glue gun - I put her ideas into use to create our little masterpiece. 
The materials all ready to go

Our finished creative product, all ready to test out.

Trying it out

Pretty pleased with her new soap dispenser

"I did it!"

Our little masterpiece won't be a part of Lysol's contest, but yours can be!  Here's how you can go about it:
1.  Visit the Lysol Canada Facebook page here.
2.  Don't forget to get your $5 off Coupon here towards your own Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap Dispenser system.
3. Get creative with your kids and have fun!  Post your pictures and good luck!  I know I would love to win a Mini-Tablet!

“Disclosure – I am participating in the Kid Who Touches Everything blog tour by Mom Central Canada on behalf of Lysol. I received compensation as a thank you for participating and for sharing my honest opinion. The opinions on this blog are my own.”

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Music and Kids

We revamped one of our old iPhones into an iPod for our son as a birthday gift. He's 6. With that we also gave him a pair of headphones.  This morning I heard him singing Moves Like Jagger  by Maroon 5 very loud and clear.  It's very different hearing those lyrics out of the mouth of a 6 year old isn't it?

Things I have learning about parenting

This past year or so I've had a few encounters and conversations with some first time mums. And I've come to realize that with my 8,6 and 3 year olds I've graduated past my relevancy point with the new mom crowd. They are all having those same conversations I had with my friends back when we all were new moms but really they aren't interested in hearing from someone who has already gone through those stages. They want to commiserate and ask for advice from people who are going through them right now.  I see the looks on their faces when I share and in the back of my head I'm thinking, wait a minute...my youngest is 3!  How is what I have to say irrelevant?  Is it because my advice and experiences don't gel with whatever parenting guru they are adamantly following right now?  So Ferber, Sears or Baby Whisperer here is my take on it all.
1.- there is no one right way to parent.  Some ways are better than others.  But for the most part if you are using common sense and doing what works best for you and your child you are doing great.
2. - babies, like people in general are all different.  What may work for one baby may not for another.
3. - once someone finds something that works for them they are convinced it is the best only way to parent - while this may be helpful for that parent, it can make another parent feel horrible and inadequate.  Case in point:  I was part of a baby feeding group put on by our hospital when my first was an infant.  At one meeting the issue of sleep came up (as it inevitably does) and one parent was so chipper to say, "My daughter started sleeping through the night at 6 weeks and has ever since, I don't know what the big deal is."  The big deal for the rest of us blurry eyed parents is that you really need to just keep that to yourself for right now.
4. - very few babies are the snapshot perfect babies who meet every developmental milestone at the exact right time.  Some babies walk early at 9 months, some a little later at 15 months.  In the big picture the when isn't a big deal.  Most of them will eventually get there.  The same goes with sleeping through the night and potty training.  I have yet to hear about a child who didn't get into university because they potty trained at 3 and a half instead of 2.
5. - telling a parent that this certain way will work (because it worked for them) is useless advice for a parent who has honestly tried it and found it not to work for them.  Trying to convince them otherwise  only creates feeling of animosity and inadequacy.  Why not take more time to reassure them instead?  Why don't we spend more time building each other up as moms instead of going into Camp Ferber and Camp Sears like a war zone.  I was an attachment parent before I even knew there was a term for such a thing.   A colleague of mine  found Cry it Out worked for them.  Great.  I was a long term nurser for each of my babies.  My sister in law nursed for a few months and then switched over to formula.  Another friend of mine used formula right away.  Great. 
6. - find what works for you and keep doing it.  If it isn't working, try something else and see how that goes.  Maybe you will find one method is THE method.  Maybe you won't.  Maybe you will find that taking a little bit of this and a little bit of that will be the thing.  You may also find that what worked with your baby last week has suddenly changed because your baby just got that much older that they need something else.  Just roll with it and keep on rolling with it.  I remember a friend of mine observing with her babies, "oh you are doing this now, and you don't want to do that anymore."  So true.  Those babies are amazing little people who are learning and growing at a phenomenal rate.  So stop worrying so much and take the time to enjoy it!
7. - Yes, you will be tired.  Yes, you will have moments complete frustration.  Yes, you will question yourself.  Yes, you will wonder what the heck were you thinking.  Yes, you will make mistakes.  But...yes, you will sleep again.  Yes, you will relax.  Yes, you will find successes.  Yes, you will realize that what you were thinking is that this little person is worth it.  You will find that you love deeper and more completely than you ever realized was possible.  You will find that place in the quiet of the night at 3am when it is just you and your baby.  You will find that in their first little smile at you.  You will find that when you see their complete trust in you as they take their first wobbly steps towards your open arms.  You will find that when they utter the syllables "mama" for the first time.  When they hold your hand and say, "I love you".  And you love them too.

March Break mid week update

Tuesday -
Things accomplished: vacuuming, picking up all the toys left around the house, laundry
Moments of Fun: Twoonie matinee and lunch at a friend's place
Wednesday -
Things accomplished: hockey chauffeuring
Moments of Fun: Birthday morning for my now 6 year old!  SeaDogs hockey game in the evening

Monday, March 4, 2013

March Break Monday

Today marks the first official day off of March Break - yes I know the weekend...blah, blah, blah. But today was an actual day off.
Things accomplished: oil change on car and engine checked over
Fun extra for the kids: public skate for the boys and finished my movie with my 8 year old.
Not a bad start.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Just the two of us

Tonight, my hubby was out (working). And I had one of those brilliant mom moment ideas. I caught the attention of my oldest child and whispered in his ear, "Let's get the little ones to bed and then you and I can have some Mom and kid time". He beamed at this. Normally, I'm the pretty strict bedtime kind of Mom, but it's March Break, let's bend a few rules. I sent my oldest (8) downstairs for his own devotional time while I did bedtime with my younger two. Once they were all tucked up tight for the night and I was pretty sure they were actually sleeping and not just fake sleeping, I crept downstairs myself. I sent him back up on a few secret missions with the warning that if he woke his brother or sister the game would be over. He brought up my laptop and our movie while I made hot chocolate and caramel popcorn. We then snuggled up in my room and had a little cozy time, just the two of us. Sometimes I need that reminder that parenting is not all about keeping the rules and routine. Sometimes the best parts are the moments we take advantage of just to enjoy. This is one of those memories.

March Break for a Hockey Mom

While many friends are saying hello to sunny beaches or outlet malls, this March Break we are all about hockey.  With 2 in hockey this was bound to happen sooner or later.  My oldest (8) is really taking up most of our hockey time, but my littler guy (5) has his own this week too.  Our March break started off like this:
Saturday - J hockey at 9, E hockey game at 10:45 - different arenas in different cities (half an hour away)
Sunday - E hockey academy at yet another arena

And continues on like this:
Monday - E hockey practice at yes, that's right the 4th arena
Tuesday - our day off - twoonie matinee at the theatre with friends (Rise of the Guardians)
Wednesday - E - hockey academy at lunch, followed by regular hockey practice at supper, followed by an evening of watching our local hockey team with E's hockey team, and they are picking up the Chuck A Pucks at the 2nd intermission
Thursday - E - hockey tournament, yet another arena
Friday - E - more of the same tournament
Saturday - E hockey practice at 8:15, J hockey at 9 - different arenas, different cities
Sunday - E hockey academy
Total arenas: 6
Total towns: 4
Happy March Break everyone!