June 23, 2014


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Reading: I'm just finishing up Oxygen by Carol Cassella for book club tomorrow night. It's a fiction novel about an anaesthesiologist dealing with a malpractice lawsuit after a seemingly routine surgery goes sour. I'm enjoying it, as I do most medical dramas, but it's no page-turner.

I've also gone back to finish up Elaine Lui's book, Listen to the Squawking Chicken, as I abandoned the last 50 pages or so of it back in April. Partly because I lost interest and partly because I had to move on to my book club book.  I have a hard time not finishing a book though, even if I've sort of lost interest.  I attended Elaine's book signing here in Edmonton (which marked Sully's first bookish event!) and so I feel an obligation to finish the book. (Tip: take a newborn to a book signing with you and you'll get to skip to the front of the line.)

elaine lui book signing

On Repeat: I know I'm probably late to the party with this one, but I can't get enough of this song by Sam Smith right now:

Watching: I finished the final episode ever of Friday Night Lights last week (insert tears here) after dragging out the final season for as long as I could. I just didn't want it to end! Even though the show is about so much more than football, I actually ended up really enjoying the football aspect of it too. Plus, Taylor Kitsch is in it aka Tim Riggins. 'Nuff said. Texas Forever!

Jim and I are binge watching Lost and are now halfway through season 3. Jim is not a binge watcher of TV shows like I am, but this one has him hooked, and he often begs me to stay up late to watch "just one more episode". I must say though, this would have been a very frustrating show to watch in real time. Waiting a week (or more) in between episodes would have drove me crazy! (No spoilers!!)

Obsessed with: The aroma from my French lilac trees. We only planted them two summers ago and I'm so happy with how well they are doing. They are right underneath the two windows in our family room  and all I have to do is crack the windows to enjoy their sweet scent.  

Eating: It's time to reevaluate my eating habits. I know it's unrealistic to want my pre-baby body back so soon after having Sullivan, but my not so stellar food choices are not helping the matter. I also have very little will power when it comes to saying no to sweets. But with summer finally here and with Sully now being a bit older and not needing to be in my arms 24/7, I am motivated to clean up my diet and stop relying on "convenient" foods. I have been cooking more often, but my snacking is what is really hurting me. 

Looking forward to: Summer!! It's finally here. And book club tomorrow night! The book was my choice, and while that also means it's my turn to host, I'm taking book club to a nearby restaurant so that I can have a few hours out with my lady friends.

What are you currently up to? Any new songs I should be adding to my play list? 
Let me know in the comments!

June 11, 2014

Friends Without Kids

My Dearest Friends Without Kids,

It wasn't long ago that I could call you, text you, meet up for coffee/drinks with you, pretty much whenever I pleased. I still want to see you and talk to you, but I'm no longer the boss of my days. You see, I had a baby a few months ago and at any given moment I'm either nursing, changing a dirty diaper, holding said baby, or wiping up spit up. Seriously, all.day.long. I've learned to do almost everything one handed, and it's amazing what I can do with my left hand now - like type entire emails amazing. It takes me a few days to complete one load of laundry and most days my diet consists of granola bars, coffee and crackers. Basically, anything I can grab and eat with one hand. 

Luckily, life is getting easier everyday and I am finding myself with longer moments in which I can get things done, like showering. I think about you often though; what movies you're seeing, which restaurants you're eating at, which fancy coffees you are enjoying, and I'm sorry I can't join you right now. But I hope you save me a seat for later. 

I know my words probably mean little and feel full of excuses. Good thing Elle put out this hilarious and clever video - it pretty much sums up my life right now (and I only have one kid!) and why it sometimes takes me longer than usual to text or call you back. Also, mommy brain IS a real thing and sometimes I just plain forget. And to my friends with kids, if you haven't already seen this video, do yourself a favour and take a minute and a half to watch it!

June 03, 2014

How well does your baby sleep at night?

I think this is the question I get asked most about Sully (or some version of it), regardless of how well I know the person asking it. Everyone wants to know how much sleep you are and aren't getting at night. Is your baby sleeping through the night? How often are they getting up? How are you coping with the loss of sleep? Are they sleeping in their crib? It's hard not to feel defencive when asked these questions. I often feel like it's a competition - who's baby is sleeping better and in longer stretches throughout the night? If I tell people my baby is up often throughout the night, and I am exhausted during the day, am I failing as a new mom? If I tell them it's a non-issue because we co-sleep, do I see judgement in their eyes? There are so many challenges we new moms are presented with, and the issue of sleep/sleeplessness is high up on the list.

Before Sully was born, I never really thought too much about bedtime and bedtime routine. I (naively) assumed that he would sleep in his moses basket beside our bed for the first few weeks and then in his crib after that. I had visions of myself spending hours during the night, in the expensive glider chair we purchased for his nursery, nursing my son and catching up on the reading I missed out on during the day.

Well. For the record, Sully hasn't spent one night in either his bassinet or his crib, and the only time I've rocked him in the glider chair is during daytime nursing sessions when I feel like changing up the scenery from the downstairs couch.

So where does he sleep? There's only one place left: our bed. Co-sleeping or bed-sharing, is not for everyone, but right now it's what is working for us, and really, I have learned that having a newborn in the house is all about doing what works for you. I never imagined that we would become a co-sleeping family, but co-sleeping has allowed me to get decent sleep at night and not be tired during the day or feel the need for naps. I get mixed reactions when I tell people we bed-share with Sully. Some see it as a negative thing, a "problem" we'll be "sorry" we started. Others totally get it. I say, don't knock it till you've tried it!


No one knows what kind of baby they are going to have…a good sleeper, a not so good sleeper, a good napper, a fussy baby, etc. From day one in the hospital, Sully hated the cold, plastic bassinets the hospitals provide for your baby. I think the most he ever slept in one was for 4 hours, and that was after the nurse kindly woke him up at 6am to give him his first bath. Otherwise, he wanted to be held. And how could I deny my perfect, little son that demand? So I started holding him while he slept. And then one night (I spent 6 nights in the hospital - birth story coming soon!), I kept him in bed with me all night. It was just easier that way. I couldn't, after my c-section, get out of bed to pick up my baby and then get back into bed and reposition myself while holding my baby without the nurses help. When I was done nursing, I would call the nurse to put Sully back in the bassinet, and within 20 minutes I would be calling her again to have her hand him back to me as he was already fussing. So I decided to stop bothering the nurses and just hold him.

Did I start something there? Maybe. Did I have any other choice at the time? Maybe. But I didn't see it that way. I did what I needed to do and it worked for me. The first few nights at home we tried the moses basket beside the bed and he would wake up after only being in it for 20 minutes, sometimes even less. We even tried putting him in the mamaroo swing right beside our bed and even that didn't work. Unsure what else we could do, we brought him into bed with us. We all slept that night, and I realized that bed-sharing just felt right.  Not to mention that nursing in bed at night is effortless, quick, and makes for falling back asleep a breeze.

I have a lot of friends that have all had babies in the last year and each and every one of them have their own stories to tell about their baby's sleep habits. Some have amazing little sleepers, baby's who will sleep most of the night away in their cribs, and some who need a little bit more attention to get through the night. Some co-sleep, some do not. Some started a bedtime routine early on, while others waited. As a first time parent, it's hard to know what to do: do I establish a (rigid) bedtime routine? At what age? 3 months, 6 months? Or do I listen to my baby's cues? What time is bedtime for a 3 month old? I worried at one point that I would have to hold Sully while he slept forever! But my mom wisely told me that one day he would not want to be held as it would no longer be comfortable for him. And as I type this, he is sound asleep in bed beside me.


So where do we go from here? I'm not sure. Part of me thinks why fix something that isn't broken? I'm not sleep deprived, tired during the day, or desperate for a nap when afternoon rolls around. We'll probably leave Sully in our bed for a little while longer, although I do think about trying him in his crib just to see if and how his sleep pattern at night changes. But for now, I'm keeping him here right beside me, right where I want him.

Friends, I'd love to hear what the sleeping situation is like with your little ones. How and when did you establish a bedtime routine? Do you recommend any books on the matter?