Tag Archives: The South

17

17-blog

17 months, that is…

And it is a most interesting number. And a most interesting, um, adventure for Mummies and Daddies. You know who you are (or were).

It recently started with the word ‘No”. And then was followed by “Mummy, no. I don’t want to hold your hand”. This was communicated by, well, mostly grunts and, um, annoyed looks.

Someone is in the middle of asserting his independence and is not enjoying the doubts that Mumma is having regarding his decisions. Such as decisions regarding crossing a street without holding onto Mumma’s hand. I am pretty sure that all of you reading (ie my Mum and possibly my mother-in-law) realize that I am right.

Could you please tell V? Since he is currently a non-verbal Italian, he just stops in his tracks and squats down, trying to pull his hand out of mine. Since I am an emotional Canadian, I can read his body language.

I think all he wants to do is careen madly down the sidewalk, looking slightly tipsy as he bounced back and forth on our various neighbour’s lawns. I think he hears the name ‘V……’ and the word ‘No’ and reacts accordingly.

A few major temper tantrums have been introduced. Mostly involving him having a ‘fit’ (and very loose terminology is used here),  throwing himself on the floor and mostly smacking his head while doing so. Which induces crying. And so then I pick him up. And then he struggles with me holding him. And then I put him down. Repeat. Repeat etc etc.

And so life is interesting.

And my Mum is laughing. I know she is, as she was laughing earlier while I was complaining about this. I figure its divine retribution. I know I was  a pain in the ass. And I know M is a pain in the ass. And so the equation.

M+J=V(pain)2

Our respective mothers are peeing their pants laughing right now. Busting a gut (in a refined manners… as I know they are lovely ladies and all). Still. So tired.

xoxo a.m.

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Suck it up, Mummy

suck_it_up-blog

How did November suck so fast?

I had high hopes for it. REALLY high ones, especially considering that October was the month of the plague in our little family. I was really over it all. Sick husband. Sick little boy. Projectile vomiting. High fevers. Lethargy. Do I need to go on? Are you getting the picture? Just skip back a few posts and you will be able to read all about it.

So as I got home today, my father-in-law was outside with V playing. I parked, scooped up that little Man and got the down low on how V had behaved for Pop-Pop and if anything was going on in daycare that I needed to know about.

Last week there was a confirmed case of Hand Foot and Mouth disease. They sent home a handy little info sheet, all about the disease and some ways of combating it. There is no cure. It is just a virus that runs its course and is also fairly common in care facilities with small children. Everything goes into the mouth and everything comes out of the mouth and goes onto everything else.

I was pleased that they had let us know, but thought nothing further about it. My son couldn’t possibly get something like that. Only dirty people do (that thought might have been lurking somewhere in the back of my mind…. it didn’t surface…just saying it was there…).

I clearly must have pissed someone off with that deeply hidden thought as not only is it Monday, but V has a blister inside his bottom lip. And a bit of a rash on his bum. That rash could be anything though. But Day-Care seems pretty sure that is what it is. You know, with all of their medical licenses and stuff.

I’ll be making my weekly call to the pediatrician tomorrow morning.

Read all about what we are going through HERE

I will be trying to suck it up while you are doing that…. (I am a big girl. I can handle this…again…still….forever…)

xoxo a.m.

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Hallo-Weenie!

IMG_7133

Post-Halloween over here, and the dog and I are chilling…

V was a marathon runner this year. Costume choice was decided last year and at that time was based on the fact that babies look cute in shoes. About one month ago, V learned to walk and so the costume suddenly became a way better one. How funny to see little man dressed up as if he is about to do a runner and then it watch him do one down the sidewalk!

I thought it would be hilarious…

It was. When I ever thought a headband would stay on his little head, lord only knew… But for the 30 seconds it was on, it looked awesome.

7 pm and little man was in bed. Tuckered out from the excitement of the evening. He got 5 pieces of candy (that I will eat for him).

I feel weird about giving my child candy. Apparently, I have no problem giving other peoples kids treats (as illustrated by the way I thrust it upon those trick-or-treaters), but I had a hard time even giving V a lollipop. It just seems wrong… Cupcake (that I have made for him), yes. Laffy taffy, no….

I proceeded to get knocks on the door until 9:30, despite an apparent strict policy  regarding front porch lights being on (indicating that you are participating). I turned mine off at 7:15, when I was about to run out of candy. Just as my mother-in-law left and I let the dog loose again.

Poor Chewie, barking his face off upstairs, locked in a room. The second I let him out, he became uber guard dog.

He is a chihuahua. And rather self-important.

Thank you Chewie for providing me with an excuse to not answer the door after 7:30.

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Slap it hard

slap-blog

Boys can be very exhausting.

Riding on the end of an influenza, ear infection, projectile vomiting, high fever, nebulizer, late night crying and screaming, wheezy, asthmatic, some-one-bit-my-child-at-school month of October, I have had enough.

Enough October!! Give it a rest! Bring on November in all of it’s sweet turkey finery. Mummy needs a break.

I will not get one though, such is the life of Mummy.

Little Man is going through a ‘Mummy’ phase. Everything is ‘Mumma’ and ‘No’. Mostly ‘no’ to people who aren’t Mumma. And also ‘no’ when it is Mumma as well. He is alternately extremely delighted by everything that involves me and clingy as well. He just can’t get enough of me.

Secretly I am delighted. And secretly I am a little scared of my reaction. And then publicly terrified that I will be one of ‘those’ mum’s. Since I have called his Doctor every week for about a month now (and am really restraining myself from calling this week), I feel like I am edging there. They might know who I am. Hopefully they think I am nice (nervous laughter) and not a total psychopath-slash-first time mother.

This is a hard line to tread for me. Especially for a person such as myself, who tends to be rather concerned with what people think of her.

On one hand, I don’t care at all. I will happily babble nonsense at V down the aisle of any store and say the most ridiculous things to him. Random stories about the fruits and vegetables we are passing by…promises to make him yummy dinners, more delicious than he has ever eaten. Descriptions of things we are going to do on the weekend.

Confronted with people actually paying attention to me, it’s another thing altogether. Suddenly I do care very much about what I am saying and how I am coming across to them.

Basically I will kiss Little Man’s chubby cheeks to the point of rawness, and then afterwords wonder if anyone thinks I am too doting of a mother. But at the same time, I don’t give a shit. Because he is the cutest, sweetest Little Man in the world, way cuter than yours, by the way… Just in case you wanted to hear that. WAY cuter. And most handsome. And best personality. See? See what I mean? (My personality makes this rather conflicting…)

And I will call the pediatrician non-stop and use that overly friendly voice that annoys me so much at the office that I work at. You know, that voice you use when you want a favor? Except, I am not a bitch, like so many of the mothers I speak to (except for that one time…. but it was perfectly excusable…)

So this whole ‘biting’ thing at daycare really, well, bites. And super sucks. And bites even more…

I am unsure how to proceed with this. I called the director of the school, informed her and the teacher and now (apart from tossing the mother of the biter out into the parking lot and having a proper slap-down) I am not too sure what the next step is…

No slapping, right? And I must be sure to teach V about the no slapping rule as well….

*sigh*

xoxo a.m.

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Yesterday

autumn-blog

Yesterday I had a ‘1994’ experience.

Gluten-free blueberry pancakes and MacGyver (oh how I love you and your clever ways) were how V and I started the morning. I made itty-bitty  sized ones (mix by Pamela’s, best Gluten-free mix I have tried so far). Babies and pancakes are a good thing. Babies and blueberries are not. Did you know if Blueberry pancakes hit the (beige) carpet at a Toddler-throw velocity, there will be  a stain? Perfect illustration as to why one should get hard-wood flooring. (This has nothing to do with 1994)

Post-pancake and MacGyver-fest (I felt like V was significantly impressed with MacGyver), we were off to Grandma’s house.They were planning on hitting up SeaWorld with the Little Man, leaving me and the Big Man at loose ends.

We need a new coffee table. Our weenie wicker one just was not doing the job in our HUGE new house. We had things picked out to check out at American Signature furniture. We happened to drive past World Market. Well, it just happens that its one of my favorite shops. So we thought we’d stop in and check out their furniture.(Again, 1994 this is not)

Suddenly, mission accomplished. Coffee table spotted and purchased. With a discount as we purchased the floor model. Anyways, it is huge. HUGE. We borrowed the stores tape measure and went off to measure the trunk of my hatchback. Pretty much we had no idea what we were actually measuring. We were pressured by the sales staff to make sure it would fit as they said they would hate for us to buy it and then find out it didn’t fit. Like they really care. And like we care as well!

We were determined to make it fit.

It didn’t.

We tried harder.

It still didn’t.

Regardless, it was coming home with us. Precariously balanced in the back of my hatchback, I climbed in the back of the car, braced my legs and held onto that table with all of my strength. As I was getting situated in the back, a woman walking by said “Oh, I have so been there so many times!” and smiled.

I smiled back.

So have I.

And then I had a flashback to sometime in 1994 when an ungodly amount of girls climbed into my friend R’s little red car. I think it was a Hyundai. Or a Rabbit. Regardless, it fit 8 that day, several of us were in the trunk and that car was a low rider.

Not sure where we were going, but damn we had fun getting there.

Oh 1994, how I loved your fishnet stocking, plaid flannel shirt/jacket wearing, hand-painted combat boots stomping, always angry, black lipstick (1 week only) clad, Pearl Jam thrashing ways.

As I clung to that table, laughing and smiling while M drove down the expressway and that cool Autumn air blew in the back of my little red car, I was suddenly transported back to the Island. High School. My lady R. Oh friend, I miss those silly times.

Clutching that table, suddenly that simple little table shopping trip turned into so much more. A High School mini-flashback. A 10 year deduction from my birthday (leaving me in my 20’s). A big ol’ smile. Some slightly cold fingertips. A trunk filled with dried leaves. And one cheap blanket from Ross that only cost $5 was it was sold bundled up in packing tape that took me about 15 minutes to removed.

Trunk packing. Didn’t care.

Autumn and Fall,  you are the same but slightly different and I love you both…

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Fever times 2

sick-blog

16 months in and my first experience with a really, really sick little boy started yesterday…

All in all, not too shabby. All we’ve had to deal with prior has been food allergies, allergic reactions, mild asthma and lots of poop. Ok, looking at that list, let me revise that  ‘all we’ve had to deal with’ comment, that kind of made it sound like parenthood has been a cake-walk over here.

Really what I mean is that this is my first experience with scary high temperatures, scary lethargy and projectile vomit (Exorcist-style).

V woke up yesterday a wee bit warm. Babies are warm in the morning, so I didn’t think too much of it. He ate all of his breakfast, drank his bottle and just was a little quiet. I took his temp, it was 99 degrees…a little ‘ping’ of concern hit me, but again, he’s been warm like this before so I figured that it would go away once he was more active…

I WAS going to make Canadian Thanksgiving dinner Sunday for all my peeps in Orlando. We were also supposed to be going to see Elmo at UCF Arena in the afternoon. So we had things to do and so off we went to do them. Whole Foods (that I might leave M for and marry in a legal, binding ceremony) and Ikea. Done and done.

On our way there and back, he dozed the whole time. That ‘ping’ of concern started to ping a little louder. As I unbuckled him from his car seat and picked him up, he was really really warm. So warm, in fact, that when I handed him to M once entering the house, he immediately said to me “Wow, hes really hot, you aren’t going to Elmo, are you?”, to which I replied “No. Not at all” (although secretly I really wanted to).

I gave him some infants Tylenol and took his temperature.

103.2

What. The. Fuck. (Pardon my dirty mouth, but seriously, what the fuck!)

That is one high mothering-fucking temperature! So high that I remember using temperatures like that as bragging tools when I was in Elementary School to illustrate how sick I had been. “Ya? Well, my temperature was 103.4 and my Mummy said I might die. DIE!!” (I tend towards the dramatic). I tried not to remember that as I calmly said to M “We are going to the walk-in clinic”.

He calmly replied “OK, I think that’s a good idea”.

In reality both of us had cartoon steam-whistles on our head and steam was shooting from our ears. And my body might have become an ambulance. At least that’s what I told myself as I did 75- 1.000.000  (miles per hour, folks) down the expressway to the Pediatric clinic.

An hour later, I emerged with V and my awesome in-laws. Who are awesome and met me there, at the clinic (M called them) and stayed with me the whole time. Again. Awesome.

Influenza type A. And an ear infection. Antibiotics and Tamaflu (which makes me think of Tama-chan, that seal that swam into the Tokyo Harbour and became a national icon [I have a Tama-chan doll somewhere]).

The rest of my evening was not awesome. I went and got the meds filled, drove home, medicated V up. He remained hot. In-laws returned with food (M was at work). The rest of the evening was a blur of trying to force food and fluids on Little Man. Mostly fluids.

He cried non-stop and was so hot I swear I could have cooked something on his forehead. At about 9 pm he projectile vomited all over the place and as I went to pick him up, he threw up down the front of my tank-top. Wonderful. Hot and shivering at the same time, I stripped him down and washed him down in the tub… the rest of the evening was a blur.

We finally got him settled down with some fluids in him and he went right to sleep. Poor baby was so exhausted.

I went to bed too. Poor me, so exhausted….

Actually, I went to bed on the floor of V’s room. He made so many little noises and I woke up and trekked into his room with every one that finally I made a make-shift bed from a duvet and the pad on an Ikea chair and slept with my hand on the edge of his mattress.

Fever all night long. It finally seemed to break around 2 am… and we both slept.

And did I mention that M came home from work with the stomach flu?

Our home is a bubonic plague zone right now. DO NOT COME OVER.

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No

scold-blog

Last week I watched V stand in the living room, shake his hand at the dog and shout (actually shout!) “Da! Daaaaaa! DAAAAA!!!” at him. The first time it was funny, as was the second time actually. Quite funny too. The third time he did it, I realized it was a little familiar.

Familiar as in it was something I did all the time.

“Chewie. No. CHEWIE!. NO!” I shout. All the time. And then, when that doesn’t work, I say in my most calm of voices “Chewie. No, buddy. GET. DOWN” (Please visualize  him frantically barking and jumping back and forth on top of my arm-chair near the window, freaking out at everyone and their dog (literally) who walks by. Or walks near. Or near-ish.

Pain. In. My. Ass.

Apparently I shout at him a lot. AND shake my finger, just like V was showing me. I do it often enough that V is now an expert at it as well. And I am not sure that I like the image that is being displayed.

So that made me think about things. About how much we pick up from our parents, what kind of lessons we learn as children that shape our world today. It really made me examine my own actions… and then look at my personality and see if I could see my parents actions reflected in that.

It was very insightful. I saw interesting reflections of both parents in my temperament and actions. I’ll just keep those thoughts to myself for now.

How much of this is genetic and how much of it is learned actions? I swear I feel some of my beloved Gran in me, especially these last few weeks when I am rather a lot ‘flighty’. More so than usual. Yikes! There might be more Gran in me than I thought! Not that that is a bad thing. I just wish it was accompanied with a bigger chest and more glamour. Like Gran.

I digress…

Oh, how I am like my mother. Might as well just have cloned her. And then made me. But added more sarcasm, made her slightly more high-maintenance (here, M would chime in with ‘a lot’) and added about 40% of Father Gilbert. And then you have me.

Higher on the maintenance level than I would like to think I am (I think I am pretty low… M disagrees A LOT), cleanliness obsessed, no patience for crap, bullsh*t or any of that crap, hard to know. Mostly because am not interested in knowing you that much. Unless you show interest in knowing me. Then I am interested. And that is because of the shyness and poor self-confidence issues.

Oh internet, how you bear and handle my confidences…. You are like the ultimate secret diary.

V is on the path to becoming an interesting combination of M and I.

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Toast

toast-blog

Today I bought a sandwich for a homeless kid.

I wasn’t going to. To be honest, I usually avoid anything to do with people asking for money. It’s pretty much inherent. Part of living on the West Coast I think. I am immune to begging…

On the West Coast, homeless people have cats and dogs that they guilt you into feeling sorry for. Who, seriously, can resist giving money to help someone feed their dog. That is the hardest thing in the world for me. Poor animals.

West Coast homeless people also try to ‘jolly’ you out of spare change. Or insult you…. one or the other…

Case in point:

Once, my mother and I were ‘accosted’ by a young man who swore we were so beautiful that he had immediately, on the spot, made up a poem, just for us. He was so charming, that of course we said yes. And then he charged us a dollar. And my Mum, being the lovely person she was, gave it to him.

And then we watched him do the same thing to someone else.

It was funny though. $1 equals funny experience that I remember 10 years later. I guess it was worth the price…

There is a well known man who sits outside a church in downtown Victoria that chimes “Spaaaaaare a little chaaaaange…” He is elderly, white-bearded. Practically has become part of the landscape. I hardly notice him when I am back home.

One day, walking past the Eaton’s Center (that would be ‘The Bay Center’ to all of you young ones in Victoria), I was yelled at for ignoring a request for change. I am sorry. But, to be honest, I can only handle that request so many times… Once I hit 4 or 5, I have reached my limit. It is hard for me to avoid the pleading eyes, but after years of experience I have become a skilled professional.

Living in the South is a little bit different.

There is no real downtown core, so you are not slammed with the exposure that you would be in my hometown of Victoria, or even Vancouver.

M and I were checking out Orlando’s ‘downtown’ area one day, back when I had first moved here when we were approached by the skinniest, dirtiest black man you have ever seen.

He proclaimed “You are in LOVE. I can feel it”.

“I can feel you love, it’s so strong. I know you love this gorgeous woman. You love her. I can feel it…. let me dedicate a song to her beauty…”

And then he proceeded to sing, with a glorious smokey voice, an amazing, jazzy, 1920’s made-up song about my beauty and how it had M wrapped around my finger. For surely no man had ever resisted a woman such as I…

Oh god, how I was both embarrassed and flattered. We gave him $5 and he went on his way, down the deserted street that he had crossed to reach us.

This young man that I saw today was the skinniest boy you have ever seen. Clad in dirty jeans and a black tank top… those shoulders of his popped right out of his torso, they were so sharp and narrow. He asked me very politely “Ma’am, spare any change?” And unfortunately I had none….

So I bought him a turkey sandwich and a bottle of water instead. And apologized to him on my way out of the restaurant for not having any money to give him. I hoped he would like this sandwich instead. He thanked me, and gave me a shy happy smile.

Just look what motherhood has done to me….

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Normal life

ikea-blog

A wee excerpt from my normal life…

Taking the elevator from the top floor in Ikea, down to the bottom with my cousin. Oh, how do we love Ikea. So many things to think and plan about, meatballs to eat, lighting fixtures to drool over. It is a beautiful place for the female members of my family.

Let’s backtrack a little…. rewind back to the food court on the top floor, about 10 minutes earlier… focus in on our lovely Ikea meal we were having. Well, that C and I were having, as V was clearly not interested in having any part of it. This was  illustrated by the carrots and cheese that he spat out. Spat out with force, I might add. He got some serious distance. Where did this random ‘skill’ come from? No idea…(signs are pointing towards his father though…)

So, as we fought with the meal tray, dropped carrots all over the place, spat out some meatball, smeared things all over our very small 18 month-sized shirt….all of this heavy action was followed by a stealth-poop.

And by stealth-poop, I mean that there were none of the usual warning signs. No grunting, no red face, no nuttin’……

Just an unfortunate smell…. one that crept up on me. It took C a while to notice… and that is because she does not have a poop-machine at home and so doesn’t recognize the early aromas-slash-signs….

But when it hit her…. oh man. It really hit her.

By then we were already on our way to the ‘family’ change-room.

But. It was locked. Damn it!! My son’s poop-bottom is more important than yours!

So I headed into the main washroom which thankfully had a changing-station.

Oh, that poor ladies-room. It was quickly defiled the instant that my son’s pants came off. That movement was punctuated by C’s exclamation of  ‘Motherf’er! Jame. That. Is. Awful.”

It might have been, but honestly, my nostrils are immune to stank like that. And my eyeballs don’t even notice anymore.

The other ladies that exited stalls and washed their hands smiled at my commentary regarding Little Man’s stinky pants. His very stinky pants. And how nice that the changing table was situated so that his dirty little bottom faced the mirrors and was reflected down the washroom.

As I wiped, cleaned, wiped and wiped some more, ladies filed in and out. There were giggles. Some of them might have come from my cousin.

As I reached into my diaper bag and pulled out a stank-diaper bag (you know, one of those ‘green’ bags that you stuff your stink into when you are out in public so the trash doesn’t stink awfully?) and got ready to deposit the ‘deposit’ into it, my cousin exclaimed at its cleverness. Really, it is very clever.

Such a nice way to tidy up after a stinky bum.

The lady washing her hands at the sink chimed in “I use plastic bags to clean up my cat’s litter box. They are so handy.”

C: “But I bet yours aren’t Arm and Hammer”.

Bathroom Lady: “No. You are right. I just use regular plastic bags”. *laugh*

Jaime: “My bags come with a handy container to hook on your hand-bag”.

C: “Quite handy when you are at Ikea”

BL: “I don’t bring my cats with me to Ikea”.

*Silence*

And then we left the bathroom and headed down to the ground floor…

Just another normal day….

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Dream

dream-blog

Tonight is the last night of my ‘1 month of posting’….a month of posting that I haven’t fulfilled. I know there were 2 dates that I missed.

One by sheer lack of imagination… another by a comeplete lack of actual power. So it was 50% my fault. AND 50% not at all. Thank god (and also blame god for that last one. It really was his fault)

Things that happened this month:

I read the whole Twilight series (and then mentally married Jacob in my mind)….(and then divorced him and married Edward)…

V learned how to say ‘Bye bye’ and clap, and say ‘Uh-oh!!!’

I pretended for a whole month that I was an actual ‘I get paid for it writer’ writer…. *dream*… it was a good dream….

I got a pedicure.

I turned 33.

V became 13 months… (almost 14 now)

I ate some crab legs.

I picked numerous paint samples…

I fell in love with M all over again.

And then, I took a nap.

Looking back at it all.. it seemed that it was a good night (all in all… and by  ‘night’ I mean month…)

Looking forward to breaking in August…

xoxo a.m.

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