The Saga of the Play Kitchen

One thing I've learned this holiday season is to not procrastinate on assembling Christmas presents. Oh Jennifer, you may say, that is a parent's right of passage. What parent hasn't stayed up until 2 am on Christmas Eve putting together a toy for their beloved child? I know my mom did it when she made me a handmade cloth baby doll long ago.

Oh no, my friends, this wasn't time honored procrastination. This was pure stupidity and certifiable insanity.

It all started when I saw this blog entry showing a handmade play kitchen made out of an old entertainment center. We knew we wanted to give Sebastian a play kitchen but the idea of a handmade one was really appealing and special. No one would have a kitchen like him and it would be special because we made slaved over it. Ideas flowing, I then saw this blog and this blog, all re purposed entertainment centers. With these in mind we set out to find an old entertainment center on Craigslist. We succeeded and brought one home for $20.00.

In July.

Fast forward to December 18th. Not one thing was done to the entertainment center/kitchen. It sat in the garage covered with crap. Naturally I was freaked so I made my husband drag it to an easily accessible area in the garage and I took off all of the hardware and doors, and got to sanding. That must have spurned my husband on because he finally got off his butt and got to work with me on it. The next 6 days were play kitchen hell.

Alex attached the back and I filled all the holes with wood putty.

Kitchen is sanded and primered. Alex cut the hole for the sink and put in a board to separate the under sink cabinet from the oven. I spray painted the oven black, totally hotboxing myself in the process. I also spray painted the stove top and side of the fridge silver to resemble stainless appliances. I so don't recommend that, as silver spray paint is the devil and shows every imperfection and fingerprint. At this point I had lost about a quarter of my brain cells.

Under sink cabinet and wall color added. Cabinet dark brown color painted. Inside of fridge painted.

"Granite" counter top in place and "back splash" affixed.

As we were nearing the finish line we realized we were screwed, literally, when it came to the oven door. The hinges we had wouldn't work properly and the oven handle screws were too short. At that point I was too exhausted to care.

Then came time to move the behemoth into the living room. Going through the inside garage door wasn't an option and paint was scraped off in the process. So it had to go out the garage door, into the snowy, icy night, and back through the front door. Did I mention I was too tired to care? That was a good thing because those nicks would have made normal, rested me cry. We got it set up, I retouched the nicks, and was finally off to bed.

The semi finished product, set up for Christmas morning.

Detail of the sink, stove top, and back splash.

Inside of the fridge.

We still need to hang the oven door after getting the correct hinges and longer screws for the handle. We also need to print out the "view" for the larger window ( I had a small one, it looked stupid) and hang the rail we bought for a pot rack.

That may be done by next Christmas.

Though it almost killed us to get it (mostly) done by Christmas morning (I was up until 3 am completing finishing final touches and set up) and took much blood, sweat, tears andswearing,we did it and we were reminded why we even did it in the first place as Sebastian saw his kitchen for the first time. He ran to it, immediately checking out the cabinets and accessories and has been playing with it over and over, ever since.

Supply List

Those other blogs have lists of supplies they used on their play kitchens with prices. I did that on some things but honestly, I can't remember how much everything cost and my sheet where I itemized some items got tossed with the used wrapping paper so I'll try to do my best remembering below. We initially thought this project would be cheaper than a store bought kitchen but it turned out with the cost of paint and wood, it really wasn't. This isn't to say it couldn't but we tend to go big.

Entertainment Center- $20

Canadian Tire
Spray paint
Brushes (foam brushes are my new husband)
"Granite" Contact Paper

Home Depot

LAGAN faucet- $22.99
TEKLA tea towel- $.49
SAXNÄS frame- $5.99
KOSING handle- $1.99
KOSING knobs- $.99

Dollar Store
Mixing bowl for sink - $2
Back splash tiles (floor tiling)- 3/$1
Stove top(selfstick blackboard paper)- $1
Fridge door baskets(plastic baskets)- 3/$1

Habitat for Humanity Re-store
Oven/Stove knobs- $1


Forging Ahead

We moved on to the next step and completed three more days of night weaning/sleep training. So far I'm hopeful.

The Second Three Nights

Again, the nursing to sleep stops at 11 p.m. When he wakes up, hug him and cuddle him for a few minutes, but do not feed him, put him down awake. Putting him down awake is a crucial part of this whole endeavor because it really does teach him to fall asleep with a little less contact and then a little less. Not feeding is the big change during these three nights. One-year-old babies can easily go for those seven hours (or more) with no calories. They like to get fed a little through the night, but physiologically and nutritionally, this is not a long time to go without food...

...During these second three nights, some babies will cry and protest for ten minutes at a time and some will go for an hour or more. Your toddler is aware that you are right beside him, offering comfort and soothing. It just isn’t the mode of comfort he wants at the moment. It is hard to listen to him fuss, but it will work. I believe that a well-loved baby, after a year or more in the family bed, will be the ultimate beneficiary of his parents getting more sleep. Not coincidentally, the parents benefit “big time,” too.

Night Seven

Sebastian was down by 11pm and slept through until 5 am! Because it was so close to our chosen time I let him nurse and we slept for another couple hours or so.

Night Eight

He was tired tonight and was falling asleep in his high chair of all places. Of course as soon as I carried him up to bed he became a wild thing and was wanting to play *sigh*. He was asleep earlier than usual, however, and was asleep by 10:30 pm. He woke up around 4:45 am. At that point, since he went to sleep earlier, I nursed his as if it was after 6. Are we caving? Maybe but since he has a big chunk of sleep I feel ok "caving".

Night Nine

With visions of Britney Spears on Glee dancing in his head (he was mesmerized by that episode- LOL)Sebastian was down quickly with hardly any nursing and asleep by 11pm. Alex has a man cold so he chose to stay up for a while so not to disturb us. He came back to bed around 1:30 am and woke us up. I was not happy and neither was Sebastian who cried and immediately wanted to nurse back to sleep.

According to Dr. Jay's method I couldn't nurse him so I rubbed his back (which he didn't like since he kept shoving my hand away), Alex sang to him (which he also didn't like), but miracle of miracles, he stoped fussing and put himself back to sleep within ten minutes, possibly five.

Next thing I knew it was 7:50. Hallelujah!


A Training We Will Go

Thursday afternoon Alex and I discussed Sebastian's "training" (ugh, I hate calling it that), and we decided to go three more days with the first step. We really didn't want to push it.

Night Four

He was asleep my 11pm. I was not. I couldn't sleep due to the stupid ass University students who live in our complex and those that feel the need to cut through our complex while going to theirs. Seriously, drunk girls screaming their heads off at 2 am. Dudes, "whooooo"ing until all hours. I hate them. HATE. I went to bed around 1am and I think I woke Sebastian up because he started whimpering and I needed to nurse him. Course it could have also been Alex getting up to use the bathroom, or a combo of both. After that he slept until 5am without waking up again.

Night Five

He was asleep by 11pm, but up two times in the night. He also woke up mega early at 6am. I don't know what that was all about. His daddy and I were certainly not happy about it.

Night Six

He was asleep by 11pm but woke up a few times. When he ate, he really ate. I'm thinking he didn't eat much during the day, solids wise, and so was making up for it at night. He again woke up early, this time 7 am. I am hoping this early waking thing ends because I am waking up more exhausted than before.

Tonight we are going ahead and starting the second step. I'm a bit worried but we'll see how it goes. I plan on giving him a bedtime snack to see if that helps curb any night nursing.


Sleep, Perchance to Dream - Following Dr. Jay Gordon

Sebastian is 14.5 months and I have realized that I have been sleep deprived for way too long. I do really like our family bed and I still enjoy nursing him but I am at the point where I need a break at night. This led us to the decision of sleep "training". We are not a CIO family at all, so following Ferber and Weissbluth were not an option for us. I used Elizabeth Pantley's "Pantley Pull Off" from her book No Cry Sleep Solution when Sebastian was younger but now was the time to pull out the bigger guns.

I was having a hard time even deciding what to do because most sleep training seems require the child sleeping in a crip or in another room. We do neither so it was important to find a method that allowed for bedsharing. Then I found Dr. Jay Gordon's nightweaning method of sleep training. Dr. Jay not only allowed for bedsharing, he preferred it, so we dove off the deep end and are giving it a go.

I wanted to record our efforts in case others were interested in trying this method out.

The First Three Nights

At any time before 11 p.m. (including 10:58) nurse to sleep, cuddle and nurse when he wakes up and nurse him back to sleep, but stop offering nursing to sleep as the solution to waking after 11 p.m.. Instead…..

When your baby awakens at midnight or any other time after 11 p.m., hug him, nurse him for a short time but make sure he does not fall asleep on the breast and put him down awake. Rub and pat and cuddle a little until he falls asleep but don’t put him back on the breast (or give him a bottle if that’s what you’ve been doing). He must fall asleep with your comfort beside him, but not having to nurse to feel comforted enough to drift off.

Night One


I decided our 7 hours were to be 11-6, giving me 7 hours of sleep (hopefully). This first night, Sebastian did great. He went to sleep at the breast at exactly 11 pm. He slept until 2 am or so. I briefly nursed him and pulled him off before he was asleep, and then he slept through the rest of the night.

Night Two

Pure hell!

Sebastian was out by 11pm and was asleep for four hours. I'm thinking, awesome, this is going to work. I nurse him briefly again but he gets pissed when I pull off. He had full out tantrums with crying and kicking for two hours off and on. Alex and I rocked him, sang to him, held him...he refused all of it, hitting us and flailing around. I kept telling him "Baby night night, mama night night, dada night night, na nas night night" (Na na is what he seems to say for nursing) and he would flip out at the "na nas night night" part. So he understood what was going on but didn't like it. Finally he passed out at 5:30 am. Surprisingly enough, he woke up happy and smiley. I made a big deal about how na nas were now awake and he could eat as much as he wanted. That made him smile.

Night Three


I was so afraid we'd have a repeat of night two. Luckily, we did not. He was down by our cut off of 11pm. Before he was asleep I told him that na nas would be going to sleep as well and he didn't react. He slept until 5 am! At that time I nursed him for a minute and pulled off. He protested for a second, then rolled over and went to sleep.

Tonight it gets tougher with me not offering to nurse at any waking before 6am. I'm sort of scared.


Home from the Hospital

First off, wow have I neglected you, blog. I had so much to write about but no time and no internet connection. Maybe I'll catch up someday, maybe.

Tomorrow it'll be a week since Sebastian's Orchipexy. That is the medical term for surgery on an undescended testicle. His left was still up in his groin and needed to be pulled down. The whole situation freaked me out since my ex-husband had a testicle removed and was diagnosed with testicle cancer shortly after we started dating. Having to go through numerous surgeries and cancer treatments with someone like that can certainly add to your fears, especially when you remember a specialist at Stanford say an undescended testicle was a cancer culprit. Needless to say I wanted that sucker taken care of pronto.

Luckily, Dr. Morris, Sebastian's urologist agreed to operate on Sebastian at 14 months rather then wait until 18 months like he usually does. So we were scheduled for surgery a couple weeks after returning from California.

We had to wait forever to go into the OR but luckily they had a waiting room for children with tons of toys. Sebastian loved that. He kept playing with the play kitchen and BBQ as well as scooting the trucks around. I think all those toys took his mind off of food and nursing.

He went in around 45 minutes after his scheduled time which sucked considering he hadn't eaten since 3 am and here it was after 10.

I asked to go in when they put him under and they allowed me to, although it was pretty traumatic to watch. I told Alex later (as horrible as this sounds) that it was like putting an animal to sleep. Poor baby was fighting the gas mask and crying his eyes out. Terrible to see but I just knew I wanted to be there for him while they did it. The anesthesiologist was so sweet though, gently stroking his forehead and talking to him as she was holding the mask on. I really appreciated that. I made sure I didn't cry until I left the OR.

They gave Sebastian a caudal block for pain as well as freezing his incision sites. The surgery lasted an hour and went really well. The surgeon said the hernia was small and that his undescended testicle went into its place easily.

When they allowed me to see him in recovery he was crying hysterically. Poor baby. I'm sure he felt like crap and had no idea what was going on. As soon as I held him he passed out snoring. He only slept about an hour and then was up and raring to go. I was told by the anesthesiologist that he might not be able to stand/walk for the rest of the day due to his caudal block, but he was up and walking within an hour and a half, and was busy playing with toys in the hospital crib. That was his first time in a crib so I think he was a little confused about it.

Once we got home we napped and he was completely back to normal. We tried to give him his pain meds but he wanted nothing to do with them and didn't seem to even need them. The next morning he was practically running around (he's learning to run) and super happy. His steri strip and stitches should dissolve in a few days and we go back to the urologist in 5 weeks.

An added plus, this surgery only cost us $5.74, the price of his prescription pain meds. Thank you socialized medicine.


As Long As I'm Living, My Baby You'll Be

To my beautiful boy on your first birthday,

I cannot believe it was only a year ago that I first laid eyes on you, my beautiful, crying bundle of perfect baby boy. Only a year ago in which you entered our lives to change them forever and make me the happiest mother that lived. If only I knew what was in store for me as I first held you and kissed you. People told me that the first year would fly by at lightning speed and they were right. In a flash you went from a small (you were never tiny) helpless baby to one of the funniest, and most clever soon to be toddler around. In the blink of an eye, you became you.

What an amazing year it has been! Boy, have you grown and learned so much. As a small baby you amazed people with your size. They never could believe you were as young as you were because you were so big and tall. You took after your daddy. You were also so strong holding your head up and loved to try and stand as we held you. I loved to watch you jump in your jumper because you had such a fun time bouncing up and down. Once you started crawling there was no stopping you, you started crawling, standing, and cruising all in one week.

Soon we knew you’d want to walk. One night, about a week before your birthday, your daddy and I were discussing you walking. We were wondering if you were going to walk before your first birthday because you had been trying to take a step alone here and there. As your daddy and I were disagreeing on what “by his first birthday” meant, you showed us up and walked across the living room! That was just the beginning and now you walk a little bit more every day. Soon you’ll be running away wanting us to catch you.

You are such an explorer. Sometimes new things were scary, such as grass, but within a couple times of sitting on or near it, you figured it wasn’t something to be scared about but something to crawl on. Kitties were perfect to try to pet and catch and one of the things that would always, always make you smile. You loved to try to figure how to work things like opening drawers and cabinets or flushing the toilet. You knew from a very young age when we hid something you weren’t supposed to have, like my cement Cheshire Cat, behind something else. You were very clever and would go back to it again and again and uncover it. There was no fooling you.

You are such a funny little person. You make me laugh every single day. Sometimes, even when you are being very spirited and pitching a fit, I have to laugh. You are very dramatic and sometimes I wonder if I have a little actor on my hands. Most nights you get very silly and go crazy standing up in bed and falling backwards over and over again. You love that and laugh and laugh. Your laughter is one of the best sounds in the world.

You are a loving person. You like to give me big slobbery kisses and sometimes are still enough to give me hugs. You like to hug your animals and take care of your baby, which is so sweet to see. You are also very outgoing. You always like for people to pay attention to you and you make friends with everyone. You especially like to smile at pretty girls. Unlike lots of babies your age, you like strangers and greet them with a smile or some loud babble.

You have a smile that lights up a room and lights up my heart. You are my heart, my gorgeous, wonderful boy whom I love so, so much. May this next year be a year of continued discovery, and exciting adventure. May you laugh more than you cry. And may you continue to touch the hearts of those around you. You are an amazing little person and it will be a joy to see how you grow and change.

I love you more than you could ever know.

Love, Mama


Attack of the Carboholic

It has happened. My once good, well rounded eater has been replaced by the carbmonster. Where he used to love his veggies and meat, he now will toss them aside for the cats or the floor to eat. Some nights it seems like he has eaten nothing. Hand him a Ritz, a piece of bread, or his new fave, a Vegetable Thin and he'll inhale that thing quicker than I can pick a cast aside piece of strawberry off the floor.

All is not lost though because he still has a love affair with all things briney. Pickles, awesome! Olives, heaven! Seriously, what kid passes up a nice juicy strawberry to nom on a Kalamata olive? Oh yeah, my kid.

The carb addiction must be a toddler thing because I see posts about other babies his age doing the same thing. When I start to worry about his nutrition, I just comfort myself my being glad we are still nursing. At least he's eating something other than Nabisco/Christie products. Maybe they'd like a spokesbaby.


One of the Worst Books Ever

Well, certainly one of the worst to read a week away from your baby's first birthday.

I happened across this book while at a local Christian bookstore, getting a baptism present for one of our favorite little dudes. Oh. my. god, I had to shut it quick before I started crying big ugly tears right there in the store.

I mean this one ranks up there with Robert Munsch's Love You Forever. You remember that one where the grown man rocks his elderly mother on his lap as she had done for so many years. KILLS ME.

You can see a few pages here but get out the tissue.
"Long ago you came to me,
a miracle of firsts;
First smiles and teeth and baby steps,
a sunbeam on the burst.
But one day you will move away
and leave me to your past.
And I will be left thinking of
of a lifetime of your lasts..."
"The last time when you ran to me,
still small enough to hold.
The last time when you said you'd marry
me when you got old.
Precious, simple moments and
bright flashes from your past-
Would I have held on longer if
I'd have known they were your last?"
Seriously, bad idea.
I am so not ready for his birthday to come. Please sweet boy, please stop, for just a little while. I'm not ready to let go.


New Meanings, New Beginnings

This Sunday is Father's Day which historically is a day in which I'd rather gargle turpentine than celebrate. I believe I started calling it Non-existent Father's Day in my teens and oft wished they had Hallmark cards celebrating it or cards you could give to moms for being both mom and dad. Who knows, they probably have them now.

See, my dad was an abusive asshole, probably still is considering that he's still alive as far as I know. That day was never a time to celebrate and its arrival would always make me cry many daddy-less tears, second only to watching the father and daughter dance at a wedding (I have to leave the room for those).

However, now I can put that behind me. I can start anew with the afore dreaded Father's Day. Father's Day has new meaning for me this year.

I only have to look at my husband playing with Sebastian or hear him tell him he loves him to have that sadness wiped away. I can celebrate what my son has and what he and my husband have given me rather than what I don't have and for that I am so grateful.

I may get irritated at my husband sometimes and wish he helped me more, I may get pissed off at the whole me/him/step-daughter triangle, but he is first and foremost a great dad and boy does he love his kids.

Thank you Alex for what you have given me and for how much you love our baby. I love you and Happy Father's Day!


Mark One Off

In March I blogged about my "Baby Bucket List", the list of things I would like to do with Sebastian some day. A couple weekends ago I got to cross one of those things off the list when we went to the Toronto Zoo with my mom, since she was visiting.

My husband clearly forgot that to hang with me and do any sort of sightseeing, you have to leave early. For some reason he thought leaving the house around 11am would give us plenty of time at the zoo. Major parent fail.

Anyway, we got to the zoo in time for lunch which we brought because we are broke and just can't do the $4.95 for a Beaver Tail thing right now. Even though it was a sunny (albeit a bit chilly) day the kid's zoo section was closed. That was so not cool. We really were looking forward to letting Sebastian touch the animals in that section. So we figured he'd probably enjoy it more when he was older anyway and set off to the Australasia Pavilion. Whoa stinky! Sebastian enjoyed looking at the birds and loved the Wallabies.

We also posed with a willing Komodo Dragon.

"Come here Mr. Komodo Dragon, I will gouge out your eyes for you".

Then we mosied on over through Eurasia which was quite desolate and fairly boring aside of the sleeping Snow Leopards. As you can see Sebastian wasn't so impressed with that section either and took a much needed nap.

Then we finally got to the Tundra Trek section which was the section of the zoo all of us adults were looking forward to. I mean hello, Polar Bears! Sebastian woke up but didn't seem all too thrilled with lazy bears waaaaay over there. The Arctic Wolves were a bit more interesting. At this point Sebastian was hungry so I sat myself down in some tepee they had set up there and nursed him cross-legged on the ground. I kind of felt tribal and all mama power right then. My mom wanted to take a pic of us but Alex said not to. Frankly I would have liked one of that moment. We just sat in there and nursed as people came in and out of the tepee. Who knows if they knew what was going on. Later he decided he wasn't done and I successfully nursed him upright in the Ergo. Awesomeness.

As we were heading into the Africa section we realized we only had an hour before the zoo closed. Such a parent fail right there. Why we started with one of the largest, most boring sections I'll never know. We were going to miss out on all the lions and elephants and gorillas and such. There was no way we'd get through those in an hour, nor did I want to rush through them. So we decided to visit the giraffe house, because they were right next to us, and call it a day.

Sebastian was highly amused by the giraffes. Here were three giant, real life Sophies to gawk at. I hadn't ever been so close to one before and was amazed at their size. What gorgeous animals!

My mom had to visit the gift shop before leaving, of course, and luckily I dissuaded her from buying Sebastian every stuffed animal there was. I mean, he already has a stuffed giraffe, does he really need another?

And just because, I have to share something I saw in the gift shop that made me want to pull my hair out.

As always, virtual cupcakes for the reader who can guess why.

So despite it being short, we had a good day. We'll go back to the zoo when Sebastian is older so he can get more out of it and enjoy the sections we missed. Maybe we'll go next summer when more sections are open.


BLW Update 3/22 - 4/7

This is another small update of new food items. At the end of the month I'll be updating the large list to show all of the foods Sebastian has eaten over our 3 1/2 months of BLW.

Homemade mac and cheese ♥
Grapes ♥
Strawberry ♥
Dill pickle ♥
French toast
Cauliflower (both raw and cooked)
Pork loin
Cherry jello ♥
Baked zitti ♥
Tuna salad
Refried black beans
Cheese Enchilada

He loved the strawberry but it made Sebastian, his highchair, and the floor look like a murder scene. I then got paranoid about allergies, which I normally don't, and panicked about letting him try strawberries before age one. So while he was fine and had no reaction to the berry I may wait a month or so before giving him another one.

Easter evening we had some cherry Jello as a dessert. I used a bowl that my Grammy gave me. It was hers for years and I had always liked it as a child because it was so pretty. I had my first Jello out of that bowl and my grandmother would always tell the funny story about my first reaction to it. So, I was looking forward to the day I could make Jello (yes, lame I know) for my own child. Alex was not thrilled with the idea because of all the sugar and junk in there but in the end he realized one bite was not going to kill Sebastian.

What is this silly stuff?

You expect me to eat this?

I love Jello!

This week we went out to dinner at Swiss Chalet. Since it was an impromptu dinner I didn't have a sippy cup with me so they gave us a covered glass with a straw. I wasn't convinced he would get anything out of it but, to my surprise, my 9 month old baby used that straw like a pro. We tried it again yesterday at East Side Mario's even though I came armed with a sippy and he did just as well.

I've been really happy to get feedback (both here and on the message boards) from many of you who read my BLW blog posts and thrilled for those of you who have found success with BLW either by starting on your own or by being encouraged or influenced by our experiences. My husband keeps telling me to start a specific BLW blog but I don't know if that would be overkill. Anyone have thoughts on that?


My Son, MacGyver

I fear we are in for it now. Sebastian is turning into MacGyver.

I submit as evidence:

A) Two nights ago we followed him into the bathroom as he was crawling in there. He went right up to the toilet, pulled up and tried to flush the toilet.

B) That same evening I was making the fold out bed in anticipation of my mother's arrival today. Sebastian was in the room with me "helping", i.e. yanking on the sheets. One of the cats jumped on the bed. He freaking loves that cat so he tried to climb onto the bed to reach her. The bed was too high so he, I kid you not, crawled to a garbage bag of diapers I had sitting there to take out of the room with me and drug it to the bed. He then climbed on top of the bag to try to climb up on the bed. It was still too high so he gave up.

C) Last night we were battling with him to get him to sleep. He kept trying to crawl head first off of the bed. I decided to take another bedsharing family's advice and show him how to crawl off the bed back end first. Obviously we would prefer him to stay on the bed but by teaching him how to get down safely we figure it would stop some banged heads and bruises. I showed him a few times and he was having none of it. He crawled across the room, pulled up at the door, and reached towards the doorknob to get out.

Yep, we are in trouble. Next thing we know he'll be rigging a way to get out of the house with tinfoil and chewing gum.


BLW Update 3/8 - 3/21

We are starting to get into combinations of solids now rather than only individual ingredients such eggplant and pear and a piece of meat. The past two weeks Sebastian has enjoyed quite a few new recipes and seemed to like most all of them.

Again, hearts indicate favorites.

Greek salad
Tunafish casserole ♥
Ratatouille ♥
Corned beef and cabbage with potatoes ♥
Sesame seed bagel
Celery ♥
Egg salad sandwich
Veggie lasagna ♥

Yeah, Greek salad was not a hit. The lettuce was too hard for him to manage and it kept getting stuck to the roof of his mouth.

Sebastian much preferred his green bean. We steam a couple for 20 seconds in the microwave and he loves them.

Eating corned beef and cabbage on St. Patrick's Day

I've noticed that he is very aware of what he is eating in comparison to what we are eating and will get upset if what he is eating is different from what we are eating. For example, if we have grilled cheese and soup, he can have the grilled cheese but not the soup. I'll make him a vegetable in place of the soup but he doesn't like that it's different.


My Mother, My Hero

We've already established I am turning into my mother, yet sometimes things remind me that I will never be half the woman she is in certain respects.

I was truly lucky to have a mother who stayed at home with me until I was eight years old and a welcome divorce necessitated she return to work. She was a wonder mom, the type who kept a spotless house, had a home cooked dinner on the table every night, and fresh cookies in the cookie jar each week. She also was my room mom every year.

Now that I'm a stay at home mom myself I have to ask myself, do I strive to be that wonder mom? Could I even do it? I don't think I can and here's why.

I am not anyone's damn maid.

(Well, anyone other than myself and my infant son's)

Perhaps I'm just bitter. Let me clarify and say that I am thrilled I can stay home with my son. Not being able to legally work worked out for me in that aspect. I am very grateful I can watch him grow and learn every day, and spend so much time with him. Those are moments I could never give up. However, I don't understand why SAHM = maid to all.

I get it, I get that many folks think if you are a SAHM, your job is the home and you should take care of it but that means that your job is raising the kids AND taking care of the whole house. Ideally I can see that happening when Sebastian is a bit older but now, *phhhhtt*, forget it.

It's hard because sometimes Alex comes home and makes comments about food on the highchair or crumbs on the counter (not always mine)and it makes me feel like crap. I know he sometimes wonders what I do all day. I certainly don't sit on my butt and eat bon bons. Now that Sebastian is crazy mobile I literally chase him and play bodyguard ALL DAY. I can't leave him alone for a second because he'll pull up somewhere he shouldn't, be pulling books off of the shelf (having a great time while doing it), or falling over and hitting his head because he'll try to stand on his own.

He's also very clingy at the moment so most of the time I have to be right next to him or holding him. Forget peeing in peace. If I want to get anything done while he's awake I have to wear him in my Ergo.

By reading the Bump message boards you'd think my kid is an alien because unlike the two - three naps most babies his age are taking, I am lucky if Sebastian takes one, ONE! So during that one nap I have to pack all of my cleaning for the day in and try to find a few minutes for myself (like I'm doing now by writing on my blog) lest I go crazy. Plus now that it's nicer out I try to get Sebastian and I out of the house for walks or to go to the park or library a couple times a week because we both can get stir crazy stuck inside the house.

This doesn't leave much time to clean up after everyone, because that's what I am doing. Since I've started staying at home it seems I have become everyone's maid. We don't have a dishwasher so I do all dishes. I'm the only one who cleans the bathroom, the kitchen, the dinning room, the living room, or Sebastian's room. I'm the only one who vacuums, sweeps, or mops. I'm the only one who puts Sebastian's toys away, does his laundry, or organizes his room. If I didn't wash and change our sheets we'd be sleeping on the same sheets for months. It's very frustrating when there are two other adults in the house that don't help.

Now I am grateful that Alex does much of the cooking because if he didn't love it so much or do it as much, Sebastian would be living in that Ergo.

I guess my point it, how did my mom do it? How did my wonder mother not go bat shit crazy? How come women of old could do so much more than I can? Did thy hold secret resentments or did they just put up and shut up because it was "women's work" they were expected to do and love it?

We could discuss this further but Sebastian just woke up after a 30 min nap and I need to finish washing dishes, finish cleaning the bathroom, fold and put away laundry, clean the living room, get the corned beef and cabbage ready to go in the oven, prep the house for my stepdaughter's guest,.....


A New Type of Birth Control?

I was reading a blog recently that centered around what pregnant women won't tell you, or what you don't know before becoming pregnant. It was pretty funny and truthful. I mean, I sure as hell had no idea about hamburger crotch or pooping on the table (I didn't do that for the record, I even asked). One would think that some of that stuff be good enough as birth control for the 16 and Pregnant set. I don't know about that. I propose we kick it up a notch and share the things you never knew about post partum, a dual layer birth control as it were.

1. Pregnancy Brain Gets Much, Much Worse

First of all I'd like to say that I planned on writing this blog post for about four months but I kept forgetting. Mommy Brain is no joke. I thought pregnancy brain was bad but it was nothing compared to the constant fog my brain resides in. Ask me what I did yesterday and you are likely to be greeted with a blank stare. I'm sure if I could actually remember anything I could tell you a funny anecdote. I could ask Alex to share one but he probably wouldn't be able to either. Mommy Brain is catching, you see.

2.Pooping Becomes a Religious Experience

And we aren't talking a good experience, we are talking about the "grip the sides of the toilet and hope for God to strike you dead" kind of religious experience. People always talk about the pooping on the table thing like it's some horrific thing and I say, forget that; the first one, two, three (even four) bowel movements are what is horrific. I swear I needed an epidural to push a teeny tiny crap past my stitches and no amount of Colace could help me.

3. Bald is the New Black

Around three months post-partum I noticed my drains starting to clog up regularly. I would wake up with my pillow, myself, and my child covered in hair. I'd have to clean out my brush weekly. Even though all signs were pointing to a hair exodus, I was in denial. It wasn't until I really examined my hairline in the mirror and saw that on either side of my temples it looked like I was actually and truly snatched bald headed. My once beautiful pregnancy hair was gone leaving me with a head reminiscent of a chemo patient. It is finally growing back in but now my head is covered with inch long wispy baby hairs. This whole hair situation makes a weave seem like not such a bad idea.

4. Are You There God? It's Me, Jennifer.

I've always been a small boobed girl. I was made fun of in junior high for being barely an A cup. It sucked. I longed for big boobs and if I could have added boobs to a Christmas or birthday list, I would have. Luckily, I grew into a small B in adulthood but I still longed for full, luscious Victoria Secret boobs. Imagine my extreme pleasure when I went to purchase a new bra during pregnancy and I had to buy a C cup. They just kept getting bigger and better. It was like winning the boob lottery. I mean seriously look at how fantastic they are in this pic!

That's all boob, no padded bra of old and taken a day short of Sebastian's one monthday. (Of course one could write another post on why I thought that would be a good outfit to wear to my son's baptism but whatevs. Thankfully I had him blocking my boobs the entire Mass)

Anyway, I could just cry looking at those fabulous things now because they are no longer. I'm still wearing my C cup bras but take the bra off and I have full on floppy National Geographic boobs. What happened?! I mean I had heard your boobs could shrink again but what the hell is this floppy boob thing? My boobs may have been small but dammit they were perky. I want those boobs back. I swear, God, I'll never be jealous of big ol' boobs again if these saggy things go away and my small perky ones return.

5. Sexy Time is no Longer Sexy

Why? It still freaking hurts. Yep 8.5 months later and I can probably count the times we've had sex on two hands, heck one and a half hands. Tears and breastfeeding do a number on the old sex drive and vagina. It's as if I had a permanent layer of sandpaper inserted after I pushed Sebastian out. Maybe that's what my midwife was doing so long down there. It doesn't help that we bedshare with a baby who is a poor sleeper. Just getting adult alone time is an act of congress. At least it is slowly getting better, but man, that was not expected.

So there you go, my five top "Things You Never Were Told About Post Pregnancy". If the prospect of pancake boobs, a dry vagina, bald patches, painful poops, and what was the other thing again? wasn't birth control for a teen (or anyone really) I don't know what else is.


We All Turn Into Our Mothers in the End

We always hear as little girls that you turn into your mother. You think as a teen that it will never happen to you but then one day, perhaps in your 30's or even earlier, you realize that yes, you have turned into your mother.

The transformation first happened with my voice. Sometimes I say things in a tone or manner that sound just like my mom. The horror! Even Alex would notice it. Then it spread to word usage. I catch myself using words my mom use and some of them are super annoying. It happens mostly when I'm talking to Sebastian. Ummm "stinky poo"? I hated that stupid phrase as a kid so why the hell am I using it with my son?

Voice and words aside the worst possible thing about turning into my mother happened and I just about wanted to die.

It happened one evening as I was picking up Sebastian's toys in the living room. I bent over in front of Alex and he says, "Your butt is starting to look like your mom's".

Instant. tears.

You see, my mom has always been a stick, like seriously 110 lbs and 5'8. While that seems like an awesome thing to some, it isn't. She has NO ASS, none. It's really tragic and even she doesn't like it much.

The sad thing is...he's right. Pre-pregnancy one of the things I really liked about my body was my bigger butt and now it's disappearing. I don't get it. How can having a baby make your nice butt go away? And it has, I checked in the mirror. My once firm butt has sagged.

So yes ladies, not only is loss of butt something they don't warn you about post pregnancy, it can be yet another example of how we all turn into our mothers in "the end".


BLW Update 3/1-3/7

More new foods were tried this week. Again, favorites are marked with a heart.

Salsa chicken with black beans
Spanish rice
Summer sausage ♥
Chicken balls with sweet and sour sauce ♥
Egg roll (veggie)♥
Fried won ton
Beef and peppers with garlic black bean sauce ♥
Chicken fettuccine alfredo with sun dried tomato sauce♥
Yogurt with granola
Wheat english muffins

Sebastian really liked the chinese food, even though we didn't so much since it was a new place for us. He also loved the fettuccine alfredo and cried when his tray was empty. I can't say he ate it all since a lot ends up in his bib pocket. I'm glad he is enjoying so many different flavours. Again Alex and I agree that BLW was one of the best parenting choices we have made. Sebastian still tries everything placed in front of him and he hasn't gagged in weeks.

The only new food he hasn't liked much was the homemade spanish rice. We are thinking it was too spicy. Alex said next time he makes it he'll cut down on the spices.


Baby Bucket List and Living Life

Recently I've been thinking about how I spend my time. It started with Alex and I having an argument over how much I'm online. Instead of getting defensive over it (I've been working really hard on the not getting defensive thing)I realized that he was totally right. I have my comp on all day so when Sebastian is nursing, napping, or playing on his own I can pop on and check my boards. The problem is, I think I'm too emotionally tethered to them and to Facebook and I need to cut way back. I need to focus on my family and my son. So now I turn off my computer in the evenings and am working on cutting back usage during the day.

With the computer turned off I've started to think about what I could, or should, be doing instead, yes, even what I want to be doing. Those thoughts led to what I would like to do with Sebastian, or for Sebastian. Of course I could come up with a ginormous list if I wrote down everything I'd ever like to do so I've decided to stay within 5 years. The following is our baby bucket list, things I'd like to do in Sebastian's first five years. Some things may be a bit of a stretch due to finances but I'm going to include them anyway. Some things we've already done so I'll mark them off.

1. Take S to Hawaii
2. Take S to Disneyland (Planning on it for his 5th birthday)
3. Build a snowman
4. Cut down our own tree at the Christmas tree farm
5. Go sledding
6. Have S meet his Great Grammy One of my biggest IF fears was not having a child before she passed. I am so blessed that he was able to spend time with her.
7. Take S to the SF MOMA
8. Play with homemade playdough
9. Bake cookies
10. Buy S his first LEGO set
11. Have family pictures taken
12. Ride a kiddie roller coaster
13. Take S to the Monterey Bay Aquarium
14. Play in the Pacific Ocean
15. Ride on a cable car
16. Baptize S
17. Go to the fair
18. Go to the Toronto Zoo and see the polar bears
19. Go to the library every week
20. Go swimming
21. Ride a train
22. Carve a jack-o-lantern
23. Go trick or treating
24. See the Nutcracker
25. See a children's play
26. Dye Easter eggs
27. Start Sebastian's birthday art book (Drawings every year on his birthday)
28. Play in fall leaves
29. Buy S a play kitchen
30. Build a fort
31. Go rollerskating
32. Go ice skating
33. Hunt Easter eggs
34. Get pet rats
35. Read a-loud Alice in Wonderland
36. Go camping
37. Teach S to tap dance
38. Sail on a boat
39. Go whale watching
40. Eat Monterey Fisherman's Wharf caramel corn
41. Ride bikes
42. Bounce in a bounce house
43. Play hide and seek
44. Fly a kite
45. Have a picnic on the beach
46. Go to the pumpkin patch
47. Visit an apple farm and pick apples
48. Raise money for UNICEF
49. Make valentines
50. Raise butterflies
51. Paint pottery
52. Play at Dennis the Menace Park
53. Feed the ducks at the park
54. Ride a carousel
55. Create a yearly book authored by S
56. Start family game night
57. Get a smile from his big sister
58. Plant a vegetable garden
59. Go geocaching when S can really participate
60. Build a sandcastle

I'll be adding to this list as things come to me.

BLW New Food List 2/20-2/28

Time to update our BLW food list as we've introduced a handful of new foods. Again, I've marked favorites with a heart.

Homemade Mac and Cheese ♥
Mango ♥
Sloppy Joe w/out bread
Chicken stir fry with rice ♥
Toast with Apple butter
California rolls
Kappa Maki


For Purple Mountains Majesty

I've almost been in Canada for six months. It'll be six months on the 15th of March and the time has flown by. I've had some thoughts about it that have really been brought to the forefront by the Olympics of all things.

Many of my Canadian friends ask if I'm torn between who I'm rooting for, or joke that I better be rooting for Canada. Initially I thought that I wasn't rooting for anyone and today I realized (or realised for my Canadian readers)that no, I can't deny it, I'm rooting for Team USA. Despite being a resident (though not permanent resident yet) of Canada I am rooting for who I am and I don't think I'll ever change.

This morning Alex, Sebastian, and I were watching the ice dancing that he had PVR'd for me. As the Canadians were presented with their gold medals and "Oh Canada" played I had a twinge of sadness, sadness that I would be raising Sebastian away from my home, his first home, out of the United States. He would never be saying the Pledge of Allegiance each morning at school or singing the Star Spangled Banner. I wanted to cry and then felt really stupid.

Because, if he wasn't being raised in Canada he would be raised in the States and wouldn't his Dad feel the same way? Probably not (Alex roots for Holland in the Olympics) but I still feel like maybe I'm being a little unfair.

Unfair and homesick. There are things I like about living here and then there are many things I love and miss about living in the States. However, this is our choice and someday this will be my new home where America the Beautiful lives on in my heart and through my son as I teach him that he is lucky boy who can wave two flags.


What a Difference a Year Makes

In August I wrote a blog post about my friend Tim and how my friend Catherine found him after we had been searching for years. The story still amazes me as does Tim and all that he has accomplished over the past year since he was helped off the street.

I'm happy to report that he is working, has his own place, and is 11 months sober. Things can be tough for him emotionally now and again but that can be expected. Other exciting Tim news settles around a new documentary about Pimp this Bum and Tim's journey. I only hope I can see it in my area. If not, I've heard it might be available to watch online.

Go Tim!


The New Foods Keep Coming

Since Sunday we've tried a few new meal items for Sebastian so I thought I'd update them here rather than add them to my previous blog post.

This week he's tried:

tunafish sandwich ♥
spaghetti ♥


Baby Led Weaning Update

I've been meaning to make a post about our progress with Baby Led Weaning and now have a chance to sit down and do so. Naps are so few and far between these days.

Baby Led Weaning, or BLW, is poorly named because when people hear you are following it they assume you are weaning your child from breastfeeding which isn't BLW at all. Sometimes you'll hear it being referred to as Baby Led Solids which I feel is a much better term. Instead of spoon feeding your child purees you are giving your child table foods and allowing them to eat along with you. Studies have shown that this affords children the opportunity to explore different tastes and textures of foods. BLW children are said to be less picky with their foods. This makes sense to me because often pablum and purees seem tasteless or a far cry from their fresh counterparts.

With BLW you offer your child foods and allow them to choose what they want to eat. You do not feed them, but allow them the power to feed themselves. For example, instead of feeding Sebastian yogurt from a spoon, I load the spoon and either set it down or hold it out for him to grab. He puts the spoon in his own mouth.

In the beginning you don't expect babies to eat much of what is placed in front of them (Most of their nutrition up to a year comes from breastmilk or formula anyway). They usually just explore it. Sebastian doesn't play with his food much, nor does he drop much on the floor if he's in the mood to get down to business. He does taste everything and mash it into his mouth. He will take bites of things and roll it around in his mouth and suck on it. Sometimes I'll find a piece a few hours later that he's stored like a chipmunk.

So while he isn't swallowing much I do find evidence of it in his diapers more and more each week. I think that will just come with time. He has mastered use of his sippy cup, however, and loves totting it around to get sips of water now and again. He tips his head back and everything. Of course he also tries to drink out of any cup or bottle we are drinking out of which makes morning coffee consumption a bit difficult.

As for the foods he's tried, I'm very impressed with his list and impressed by what he seems to like and will "eat". He'll try anything you place in front of him and there are only a few thinks he's ever made a face at (but then will try it again anyway). The following is our list of foods, his very favorites have a heart next to them. Most veggies we steam though some we roast, like the squash. Most fruit will be given to him with the skin and rind on so he can get a better grip of it.


Green beans ♥
Broccoli ♥
Sweet potato (has to be mashed and he's not into that texture)
Cucumber ♥
Green Pepper
Red Pepper
Acorn squash
Eggplant ♥


Peach ♥
Cantaloupe ♥
Asian pear
Bartlett pear
Honeydew melon


Wheat bread
Whole wheat pasta
Flat bread
Mum mums
Cinnamon raisin bagel


Ham ♥
Roast turkey
Roast beef
Ground beef
Breaded fish
Chicken (roast and pan cooked)
Pork roast
Hot dog (small piece due to all the crap in them)


Yogurt (various flavours)

Pizza (homemade including crust)
Grilled cheese ♥
Meat pasta sauce
Cheesy potatoes

The few foods he didn't seem to like after a few tries were avocado, sweet potato, and banana. I suspect it's because of the texture. We'll keep trying those out periodically to see if he changes his mind.

Here he was double spooning. He does pretty well with holding the spoon correctly but sometimes will ignore the handle to feel the fun stuff on the spoon. After this he offered his spoon of yogurt to the cat.

This was his first try of broccoli. He got the hang of it right away and will eat both ends. It's a good food to start with because they have good handles that allow babies to get a good grip.

Mmm banana, or not. I give it to Sebastian cut in half with a fourth of the peel peeled away so he has a peel covered handle. Banana on its own was too hard to handle. As you can see by his face he wasn't liking it. This was around the fourth time we tried it. By the way, banana stains. It leaves weird black flecks on clothes. Who knew?

Another broccoli shot. He does love his broccoli. He can always have mine.

This is what gagging looks like. At first it's scary and luckily for us it doesn't happen often, however, once you settle down and realize it's the child's way of preventing choking, it's pretty cool to watch. You can see the bit of broccoli he has on his tongue. It was too big and he slowly moved it forward until he could spit it out.

"Millions of peaches...", yeah Sebastian would be happy. He loves fresh peaches.

We are still thrilled with our choice to BLW and can see that it works for us and for Sebastian. Alex says that he only wishes he knew about it when his older kids were little because he loves it so much.

For those that are interested in learning more, check out the following websites:

Gill Rapley's Original Paper on BLW (Dutch site with lots of info)
babyledweaning.com with forum


I Can See Clearly Now, the Rain is (almost) Gone

I have been a bad blogger. By stopping my weekly updates I've allowed myself to slack off even more. Not that I'm slacking in everything. I just find that having an active and clingy 7 month old doesn't allow me much time to concentrate on any writing. I'm lucky if I can even pee without a child in my arms.

The past month and a half has been full of ups and downs. Our biggest high was Alex finally finding a job. Unfortunately we experienced our lowest low at the same time and are slowly digging ourselves out. I hadn't really discussed that with many people out of shame but I figured I might as well let it out.

We are so thankful for the generosity of our family and friends over the holidays. I cried hard when I received a package from my snarky girls on the Bump. Those gift cards were a Godsend and fed us for a couple weeks and allowed us to have a Christmas tree for Sebastian's first Christmas. I don't think I could ever express how grateful I am for their friendship and how grateful we were or those gifts.

We still had to budget like crazy and cut our grocery bills down to around $50 a week. It was hard and I'd sometimes cry in the car because we couldn't get the fresh foods I wanted to get for Sebastian. Luckily, I still breastfeed and most of his nutrition comes from that.

However, cards run out and we had already borrowed too much from family so we had to turn to community assistance. I never thought we'd have to resort to the food bank but now I realize that most anyone could be put in the position of needing to use it. Alex went each time and the stories he brought back were so sad and mirrored our own, families with small babies, families that looked like it was their first time, mother's crying because of the humiliation. I'm glad I didn't go (we would have had to wait outside with Sebastian)because I would have been a mess as well.

So now we wait for Alex's paychecks to kick in. Our phones were turned off, as was our tv, but we still have internet (for the moment) and a roof over our heads. My mom left me money so I could get Sebastian's pictures taken and has sent him clothes since he's growing so fast.

So what have we learned from this ordeal:

-We are stronger than we think.
-It's ok to get help sometimes.
-You can survive on $50 a week or less on groceries. You don't need to spend $200.
-Going through food bank boxes can be like Christmas.
-You don't need presents to have a good Christmas. Christmas is spending time with family.
-Meal plan from the fliers up.
-Be grateful every day for what you have.
-Give back.

Once we are back on our feet we plan on giving back to the food bank. We want to donate as well as volunteer. You never know who will need your help.


Baby Led Weaning

After researching Baby Led Weaning and talking about when and how to start solids, Alex and I decided that BLW was the way to go. We were committed to exclusively breastfeed until 6 months and ended up starting BLW a week and a couple days shy of Sebastian's six monthday. It was hard to wait since he was showing all of the "signs" of readiness for a month. I could barely eat anything or drink a bottle of water without him trying to grab it.

So we were pretty excited to start though, to be honest, it also made me a bit sad because it's just another thing along with his three teeth that are proof he's growing up and moving closer to a year. Plus, until now he has depended solely on me (and yes, I know he still does)for his food. Me = emotional mama.

Anyway, we started him on Christmas night. It seemed fitting considering it was a holiday and my mom was here to celebrate with us. It was also a prelude to our big family Boxing Day meal. We decided to offer him green beans, carrots, ham, a bit of cheesy potatoes, and a roll. He also had a new sippy cup with some water.

Here is our photographic evidence...

My big boy in his high chair, clearly excited to be joining the family for dinner.

"You mean this is all for me!?"

He went for the ham first.

He loved his roll the most.

"Forget these cheesy potatoes, I want my ham."

Trying out his sippy cup.

The whole thing was very positive and Sebastian was happy the whole time. He didn't gag at all. He preferred the ham and roll over everything else, though I don't know if he ingested any of either of them. He must have eaten some green beans because I found the evidence of a bite in his diaper today.

The following two days, were also good with Sebastian trying new foods such as avocado (meh), chicken (yum!), asparagus (thumbs up), cucumber (gimmie more), and lettuce (not a fan).

I'm so proud of him. Thumbs up for BLW.


She Gave Me a Gift

Something happened today that helped my heart just a little bit.

My grandmother was from Michigan. She grew up the youngest in a large family on a farm. She moved to California with my Grandfather after the war and although she loved California, she missed certain things about Michigan and the sight of snow and cardinals were a couple of them.

When I moved here she always asked me if I saw any cardinals because she loved them so, and even though they are apparently common around here, I never did. My mom said she would also ask her if I had any reported sightings.

This afternoon I took Sebastian out into the snow for the first time. I figured it would be a fitting goodbye, being out in the snow. We made a snow angel for her and then came inside.

I looked out into our backyard and asked her to watch over us and about 30 seconds later two cardinals, a male and female, flew into our yard and onto a tree outside the window. I can't help but think it was my Grammy and Pompy, together again after all these years, showing me they we indeed watching over us.

I'll Love You Forever

This morning one of my biggest supporters and undoubtedly one of the most special people in my life passed away. It was a day I was dreading and a day I didn't expect, not yet anyway.

My Grammy, Evadene Brooks, died this morning after a fit of characteristic stubbornness. She had collapsed this morning and refused to go to the hospital. She died shortly thereafter. She would have wanted it that way as she always hated being in the hospital ("their food is terrible!"). When my mom called to tell me it was if a little piece of me died.

My grandma, "Grammy" named by my older cousin, was quite the matriarch, a matriarch of a family of all women. She was always so very loving towards me but also a bit of a battle-ax when it came to others. If she she didn't like something, you'd hear about it.

A majority of my childhood was spent either at her house or with my grandparents over to ours. Dinners were always a special time except for the odd meal here or there where I or my cousins would pull the ol' food in the napkin trick. She never caught on or at least never acted like she did. We spent countless hours taking walks and going to the beach to have picnics. We played in her backyard climbing trees and I loved dancing for her. When I started teaching Sunday School and working at her church nursery we would spend every Sunday together. That's a lot of dedication to cart a sleepy teenager to church every Sunday. My mom and I even lived with her for 6 months while she recovered from knee replacement surgery. Three generations of women in one house was like a battle royal. My poor mom. It was us against her for sure.

As I got older my grandmother continued to be one of my biggest supporters and I always knew I had her unfaltering love. Life has a way of keeping you busy and even though we lived 15 min from each other, I didn't get to see her as often as I would have liked. That killed me because she noticable loved us coming over. I regret we didn't put things aside and go see her more often.

Her health had been bad for quite a few years and we always thought she may not make it too much longer. Part of me knew she wanted to stick around to see me have a child. It had been a long wait. I wear an Uncommon Thread bracelet which was given to me by a friend during my infertility struggles and she was the only person to ask me what the bracelet meant. She knew we were struggling and was beyond thrilled when told her I was pregnant. Now that I think about it, it was about a year ago.

She loved Sebastian. We would go over and visit her and she would hold him for a little while until she felt she was too shakey to continue.

Saying goodbye to her for the last time, before we moved, was terrible. She kept hugging me and telling Sebastian and me that she loved us. She also gave me a Loonie that she had saved in her desk for years (why, I don't know)and gave it to me for good luck.
The last time we saw her would have been three months tomorrow. For three months she was so far away and now I'll never get to see her on this earth again. I just have to have faith that we will be together again. All of us, my beloved Grammy and my beloved Pompy.
I love you Grammy. I am glad you are no longer hurting. I hope you are enjoying a new life with Pompy and having the best food ever. You will be so very missed for the rest of my days.