Friday, November 29, 2013

Things get difficult, things get easier

Things get difficult...After our fourth difficult night in a row, I woke up reliving exhaustion of the newborn twins days. When Jenn's alarm went off at the usual 5:30am for her daily workout at the gym (I know, impressive!), Teagan was already in our bed. She had been up around 1am as well. The previous night was the Quinn Show -- up every 1.5-2 hours like a newborn. I can't even remember the details of the two nights before that. They are congested, which is likely the cause of the wake ups. We've done it all, from elevating their beds to the humidifier to my homemade eucalyptus rub for their chests and feet. This too shall pass.

Despite our crankiness and exhaustion, I knew we had to get out. The morning would go quicker if we were kept busy. A little sunshine and fresh air never hurt anyone. So, we bundled up and walked through a very cold and quiet Riverdale Farm and actually had a fantastic time.

The animals were ultra-friendly today. We sang songs to a sheep while he happily let us pet him. Three little pigs (haha) actually took a break from their meal to check us out.

Look at that face!
Fighting over who gets to sniff Q's hand first
We then popped into the Brickworks, an environmental/sustainability centre that is the host of one of the most fantastic farmer's markets. They have a great cafe that serves local and organic foods, so the girls and I grabbed some soup.

Things get easier…When we walked into the cafe, I went up to the counter to order. It took me all of 30 seconds. When I turned around, the girls were sitting quietly on two chairs right behind me. Wow, you guys are being so good! I said impulsively.  A few months ago, I would have been holding one kid in my arms, while trying to put the other in a leg lock, otherwise they would terrorize the place. I got them a "treat" of a Kiju mini juice box and told them to go and grab a table. They did! We sat together eating soup and drinking juice (coffee for me) for at least 10 minutes. I had just read this post by K J and the Kids. With a daughter and two sets of twin boys, she talked about how things are finally tame enough to go out to a restaurant with the whole family. Her kids are much older than my girls and I am by no means at this stage yet, but I felt like today was a snip it of some things getting easier. Despite an exhausting night, the three of us managed to have a really nice morning together.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Nap-less T in Toronto

I'm currently blogging from the girls' room during nap time. This is what it has come to because I cannot stop Teagan from waking up Quinn.

Quinn has been in a toddler bed for a while. It is old news now, so she sleeps well. Teagan was forced into a toddler bed because she would not stop climbing out of her crib.

Quinn loves nap time and falls asleep within minutes. She unwinds quickly. Teagan is another story. She used to lie in her crib and happily chat to her animals before falling asleep. Quinn REALLY needs the nap. Without it, she's a nightmare. I understand. I'm the same way. Teagan needs a nap too, but perhaps not to Quinn's level.

I tried sitting outside the room, calmly entering and putting her back into bed when I heard her get up. She would get up quietly though. I couldn't hear her and walked in to find her waking up Quinn about almost an hour ago. The little punk knows what she shouldn't do too. She told me when I first put her down, "T stays in big girl bed." She followed with, "T doesn't wake Mini." So, now I am sitting here as she flops around her bed.

She didn't nap for the last two days. It was a disaster. On Tuesday, I had them in bed and asleep before 6pm. That bad.

Letting her nap in another room isn't an option. The playroom is next door, but it is full of toys and doesn't have curtains. I'd also need somewhere for her to sleep.

Hopefully the big girl bed will become old news to her soon. It is all a phase!

Any and all advice will be happily accepted.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


From the second I found out that I was having girls, I was anti-princess. There were going to be no "Mommy thinks that I'm a princess" onsies worn by my girls! While I am still not a huge fan of the princess obsession, I've certainly lightened up.

The girls adore their friend, S. She is a cool, "older" friend at almost 4 years old. She loves the girls as well, particularly because she gets to boss them around. S is a HUGE princess fan. The kid has a trunk full of dresses, tiaras and shoes. S's mom, like me, was not a fan of the whole princess thing before her little girl became totally obsessed. She too, lightened up.

Whenever we go over there for a play date, S has a plan. It usually involves princess dresses. I managed to snap a few photos today. It was WAY too cute to pass up!

Even in a princess dress, she moves at the
speed of light! :)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Christmas Time and the Felt Tree

I LOVE Christmas time. I'm a total Christmas nut. I love the music, the decorations, the lights….

I now have Christmas mini-nuts in the making :) I already showed them part of the movie Elf. Since then, they'll randomly start saying, Buddy the elf! They are obsessed with Christmas lights and love pointing out Santa, reindeers, trees and snowflakes. They don't realize that Christmas also means presents yet. I love that.

The girls have recently gotten really into arts & crafts. They love to draw, but probably love using glue and stickers even more. I've picked up several little projects at the dollar store recently. They've decorated Christmas bags with felt, foam, stickers, sparkly pom poms, feathers etc. I have also seen the felt tree all over Facebook recently, so I decided to give it a whirl. They love it!

How to:
-- I grabbed the felt at a fabric store because I needed a very large piece of green.
-- I cut out the tree and glued it to some bristol board.
-- Using masking tape, the tree was secured to the wall.
-- Felt sticks to felt, so I cut out shapes and the girls started decorating!
-- Note: I have seen a few of these trees done with velcro, but my method seems to be working well!


Sunday, November 17, 2013

Liver Lovin'!

I remember being amazed by the liver when I learned about it at school several years ago. It has so many jobs in our bodies and does them all so well. Since we are entering into the season of overindulgence, I thought that our lovely livers should receive some attention and love.

The liver is the largest but also the most important organ in your body. Our livers work their butts off to keep our bodies functioning well. Here are just a few things that this organ does for us:

  • Eliminates toxins that we eat, drink, breathe in, put on our skin etc. 
  • Cleans and detoxifies our blood
  • Stores and distributes critical vitamins and minerals
  • Produces bile, which is essential for digestion of fats (Bile breaks up fats into small pieces so that they can be absorbed by the small intestines)
  • Controls the production and the elimination of cholesterol
  • Helps to prevent infection in the body by removing bacteria
  • Makes clotting factors to help prevent excessive bleeding after an injury. 
That is only a snapshot of the liver's job description, but I think it is probably pretty clear how important it is. 

The liver quietly works in the background. We often don't realize that some of the symptoms that we might be experiencing could be linked to a sluggish liver. 

Symptoms that can be linked to a sluggish liver: headaches, brain fogginess, poor caffeine or alcohol tolerance, difficulty losing weight, high cholesterol, constipation, indigestion, insomnia (particularly between 2-4am)

Lucky for us, our livers are forgiving. Even if you think of yourself as a healthy person, a little liver lovin' never hurts. 

Don't worry, I'm not going to suggest a juice cleanse or a cleanse of spinach and celery! 

This is a simple and quick way to give your liver (and the rest of your body) a little love each morning. It is something that I used to suggest to most of my clients. 
On an empty stomach, start your day with a large glass of warm water with the juice of half of a lemon in it.  (Must be fresh lemon! No limes and no lemon juice from a bottle) 
Drink it with a straw to protect your teeth. 
  • This will help detox your liver
  • It will stimulate your metabolism
  • Alkalinizes the digestive tract (disease cannot exist in an alkaline body)
  • Stimulates bile production, which helps eliminate toxins
  • Improves bowel function and regularity 
  • It will give your body a hit of vitamin C (good for everyone, especially with winter coming!)
For my clients who had limited time in the mornings, I would recommend that they make 2-3 days worth of lemon water at a time and store it in a jug in the fridge. Boil the kettle each morning and add a bit to warm it up to at least room temperature. 

Easy enough to do during the busy holiday season, right?! Give those livers some love! :)

Monday, November 11, 2013

Preschool Update

Preschool is going fantastically well for the girls. A tear has not been shed since early September. It makes drop-offs happy and quick. They walk in and head straight to their cubbies to grab their indoor shoes. Often without a goodbye, Teagan goes running into the lap of one particular teacher. They are reading a book together within seconds. I usually get a kiss and goodbye from Quinn, who is happy to be there, but doesn't throw herself into her teacher's lap.

The girls are some of the youngest in their class, as I've mentioned before. They are over a year younger than some of the other kids. There is a huge difference between a not quite 2.5 year old and a 3.5 year old, as many parents will tell you. Their teachers have told me that they play very well with the other children. Teagan is a bit more forward and makes friends more easily than Quinn. This is something that I've noticed on my own as well. I'm not too concerned though because Q will be playing with other children on many days when I pick them up.

I care less about the curriculum at school than I do about the socialization aspect. Sure, learning is important, but they're 2. They have years and years of school ahead of them. I'm just happy that they love being there and love their teachers. During those beautiful times when they're getting along and loving one another, they often play school. They will pretend to be their two teachers. Adorable!

While they're only at school for two mornings per week, I've noticed a few changes. In particular, they sing A LOT. During those rare quiet times when they're both looking at books or doing puzzles, they will be singing to themselves -- Twinkle, Twinkle, ABCs, Baa Baa Black Sheep. They continue to sing Happy Birthday to Uncle Rob as well, even though his birthday was a few weeks ago. Amazingly, they know most of the words.

It was picture day a few weeks ago. The photos are priceless, particularly the "married couple" one! I snapped a few photos of the proofs, since the real ones won't arrive for several weeks. Enjoy!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Halloween with MonkeyTiger

I realized yesterday that I never posted Halloween pictures! While shopping in early October, Quinn spotted her Halloween costume from across the store. I didn't even know the store sold Halloween costumes! She saw it and instantly loved it. She has worn the costume every day since…

Excited to show off her costume to
Rob and Kelly (October 4th)
Knowing that I couldn't arrive home without a costume for Teagan, I picked up a veterinarian costume. It was adorable - blue scrubs with puppy paws all over it. It included a stethoscope and a little hat. The kid adores animals and is the baby dog whisperer. I thought it was perfect. I was wrong. She freaked out and demanded a monkey of her own.

By the time I returned to the store the next day, the monkeys were gone. I did manage to get her an adorable tiger. And this is where "Monkey Tiger", as Quinn called it, began.

We took them to a Halloween party on the weekend before the big day. Despite the rain, we did take them out for a stroll around the neighbourhood on the 31st. They didn't understand the candy thing and I wasn't going to encourage it. It didn't matter though. They had a blast running through the rain taking in all of the lights and sounds of Halloween. 

The girls and I grabbed a quick picture in front of a house
in our neighbourhood. They thought the cat was very cool
and talk about it every time we pass this house now!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

"My Mom is totally awesome"

I know that I'm a good Mom. Being a Mom is the most challenging job that I'll ever had in my life. Even though I know that I'm a good Mom, I doubt myself. I doubt parenting decisions that I've made. I worry that I've done something to "screw them up." I constantly think about what I could do better. But then, I see the way that the girls look at me…

This video went viral recently. If you haven't seen it, it is worth the 3 minutes, especially if you are a Mom :)