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14 Months

Hello and Merry Christmas to all! We’ve had a crazy busy holiday season this year and have had a house full for the last little while, so I’m sliding in a little late with this 14 month Austin update!

Austin had such a great Christmas. He was so happy all day yesterday, and even though he was way off his nap schedule, little man kept it together and was just the sweetest, happiest little guy. Matt’s parents have been down for the holidays, and we also had Matt’s youngest and middle brother and his girlfriend and their Golden Retriever here staying with us, so there have been lots of people around to play with Austin and love on him, and in true ham fashion, he has been loving every minute of it. We woke up at our house on Christmas morning, and then made our way over to my parents house for the afternoon and Christmas dinner.

For Christmas, my parents got Austin this stand alone plastic kitchen, and he just loved it; he probably spent over an hour playing with it yesterday (not bad for a guy who rarely devotes longer than a minute or two to any particular toy!!!). It just amazes me how independent he’s getting now, sometimes I’ll turn my head and catch a glimpse of him and it just hits me in the gut that he really isn’t a “baby” anymore, more and more he’s looking and acting like a little boy. I don’t know if that makes me want to sob or beam with pride. I guess, truth be told, it’s both.

Walking

Well folks, the day we’ve all been waiting for has arrived….Austin is officially a full fledged walking baby! Go Austin!

Just as I was starting to get a teeny bit nervous that he was a little behind the walking curve, he started getting super adventurous stepping off from wherever he was holding onto and taking one or two wobbly steps before falling. He did that for a few days, and then one Wednesday when I was working at home, he took the big leap and made it a few more steps for about 4 or 5 in total. I can’t think of many more things that warm my heart more than the look on Austin’s face when he started walking. He had this ENORMOUS Cheshire Cat grin on his face every time he would step away from the couch or wherever he was holding onto, and teeter for a few steps with his hands HIGH up in the air way above his head. I die. He clearly was having so much fun with this new found freedom that he kept pushing on with it, and it wasn’t more than week from that point that he was full on walking on his own.

The daycare staff seem to enjoy Austin’s walking style too (lol) because the first thing that they said when he came in and started walking for them was “He walks like he’s under arrest!” LOL, my dad gets a good laugh out of saying that he looks like he’s coming out of a bank hold-up…”Don’t shoot!”….. you get the picture!! He’s getting steadier and steadier every day, but still tumbles a lot, especially when he gets going fast (and Austin likes to get most places he’s going FAST).

A lot of people have told me that once they start walking, it becomes even harder to keep them out of trouble, but I’m actually finding the opposite….now that Austin is walking, he seems to be more content and proud of himself, and things have actually gotten (strike me down for saying it), maybe a little easier since then?!

I take it back, I take it back….please don’t strike me down karma gods…..!!!

Testing Limits

This has really been an enormous month for Austin in terms of cognitive development too. I can’t believe some of the things that he’s started doing these days. One of the new things that we’ve noticed is that he is actually testing limits and throwing mini temper tantrums when things don’t go his way or he wants to get our attention. We aren’t totally sure where he’s picked it up from, but can’t help but kind of laugh to ourselves, as long as he doesn’t get hurt in the process. The trademark “Austin Tantrum” involves throwing himself down on his back from whatever position he’s in (standing, kneeling, crawling, you name it), and tossing his head back so that it makes a big thud on the floor.

The first few times that he did this, we SPRINTED over to him if we weren’t already beside him and made a big fuss about it, but we quickly realized that he was doing it 100% on purpose, and if we didn’t react right away, he would actually stay in that position, and just wait for us to react before he would react. Some of the things that really set him off right now are:

-Taking anything from him that he wants and can’t have (read: my purse, the remote control)

-Preventing him from crawling into the dishwasher (I kid you not)

-Not picking him up the instant that he wants you to

-Putting him in his high chair when he doesn’t want to go

What can I say, life is tough for a 14 month old!? 😉 I actually get such a kick out of Austin’s sassy little personality, he is so strong willed, just like his mama, and seeing him learn to exert himself really makes me giggle. I’m trying to toughen up a little bit though and instill good habits in him so that we set ourselves up for later on in life…but man is it hard!

Daycare

Things are really going great at daycare these days! Austin really seems to enjoy himself there, likes all of his teachers and doesn’t cry anymore when I drop him off, which is making me feel about a million times better about things, even though I still truly hate leaving him all day.

I’m so proud of Austin for how well he’s adjusted, and for everything that he’s learning at daycare. Our biggest challenge with daycare now is keeping our little man healthy. A lot of people warned me about germs at daycare, but I didn’t fully appreciate how rough it would be until we were right in the thick of it. Within about 3 weeks at daycare, Austin came down with a nasty bug, and basically still isn’t recovered from it 4 weeks later. He missed an entire week of daycare just before the holiday break because he was way too sick to go, and when I took him to the doctor, he diagnosed Austin with a case of RSV (basically a respiratory infection), and sent us home with two puffers. My poor sweet baby.

The puffers have helped a lot, and I thiiiiiiink that the end is near / here for this particular bug, but we also have him at home with us for the next week, so who knows what will happen once he goes back to daycare again. I H-A-T-E with a burning passion when Austin gets sick, it just breaks my heart into a million pieces, and it also makes life so difficult for me because I have to juggle taking care of him (priority #1A) and not getting fired (priority #9C)…..sigh.

We still haven’t done Austin’s 1 year vaccines or his flu shot this year because he’s been so sick that the doctor won’t give him any shots until he is better. I’m hoping that we can get him in to the doctor towards the end of the break and get those done, because it’s been weighing on me for a while now.

Talking

Whaaaaat?!

Austin is such a little parrot these days, it’s so super funny. His favourite words to repeat (or even say on his own actually!) are:

-Woah

-Wow

-Ohhhhh (emphasis on the drawn out “ooohhhhh”)

-Mama / Dada

-Ch (he loves to make the “ch” sound, and then beam at you with a huge grin, he thinks that sound is so funny – probably because we always make a big deal out of sneezing and go “ACHOOOOO” hahaha)

The daycare staff constantly tell us how much Austin babbles away all day, and we know it’s true because he does it here too! We all get such a laugh out of his sweet little “Martian Babble” as we call it, and I have a feeling that he’ll jump on that talking bandwagon sooner than later. For now, we’re quite enjoying the babble stage, and love getting into rip roaring debates with him over anything and everything!

I think that’s all for this month – it’s been a huge month in general for lots of things Austin related, and I just couldn’t be prouder of our little man for everything he’s accomplished this month. It truly just keeps getting better and better, even though I hate to be wistfully saying good bye to the “baby days”.

Wishing you and your families a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year in 2019! I’ll be back shortly after the New Year for a bit of different chat about goal setting and some things that I hope to work on for myself in the new year.

-Sara xo

 

 

 

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13 Months

Hello From Rainy McRainville …. God Almighty, it feels like we haven’t seen the sun in a decade! I’m not what I would call a huge “summer lover” or “sunshine addict”, but enough is enough with the dreary days and the rain!

It’s been a complete whirlwind of a month since Austin turned 1 back in early October, and today is our little man’s 13th month! I swore I wouldn’t be one of those parents who used months to describe their child’s age until they were 4 years old, but it still makes sense at this age, so I’m rolling with it. I draw the line at 18 months though, after that, he’s one and a half until his second birthday 😉

Daycare

Like I mentioned, it’s been a time of complete and total upheaval in our little world over the past month, as I transitioned back to work at the end of October. This has been BY FAR the hardest thing that I’ve gone through in the past year, including all of the hell with my recovery. I never really pictured myself coming back to work at all; I pictured myself staying home with our kids until they were in school. Financially though, this just wasn’t feasible for us, and so I had to shelf that dream and come back to my dead-end job that I’ve been trying to get out of for the past 9 years.

Sigh.

It was an extremely rocky start getting Austin transitioned into daycare, but he is doing much better with things now. For the first two weeks, every time we would even go into the school building he would start gripping onto my clothes and burying his face in my neck to try and hide, and there were several drop offs where he was screaming his poor little heart out while I walked away…..just awful. Now, about four weeks into the process, things are getting a little better. Today, for example, I dropped him off with only a small whimper, and no cry. Progress.

I completely loathe and hate myself for having to do this, and I question every single day whether or not I’m doing the right thing. In fact, most days, I’m pretty sure that I’m not doing the right thing. But, I guess the only way to get through is to keep moving forward.

The biggest issue that I’m having is that I feel like I have no time for anyone or anything anymore. Not that I ever really did feel like I had enough time. I just hate coming home and having an hour and a half to spend with him before bedtime. Hate. But, I’m doing my best to make the moments count instead of count the moments (cheesy line, I know, but it’s the truth), and focus on quality instead of quantity. It’s really the only choice I have.

On the positive side, I am so, so proud of Austin for how much he’s developed in such a short-time at daycare. He is so much more outgoing now, and I can’t believe the fun that I see him having on the video feed (which I sit at my desk all day and watch on my phone lol). The shy little baby that I knew for the past year seems to have really evolved! It just cracks me up to watch him cruise around the classroom and get into everything and anything.

We’ve had good luck with Austin’s teachers and the daycare in general; I’ve been pretty happy with how things have gone overall. The food that they serve them is great (when he eats it), and the teachers seem really nice. There are three main teachers in his classroom, and then subs switch in and out to cover off. He seems to really like all three of his main teachers, and they seem to get a kick out of him too, which helps!

At Home

Austin is SUCH a little turkey these days, I don’t know whether to die laughing or throw my hands up in despair sometimes!! The child is not capable of sitting still for more than 5 seconds, absolutely MUST get his little paws on everything in the entire house (the more you don’t want him to touch it, the more appealing it is to him!), knows exactly where he’s not supposed to be and is bound and determined to get there, has the will of an ox and the pipes of an opera singer……shall I go on?!?! LOL I say all of this with a huge smile on my face, because 99% of it just makes me die laughing. 1% of the time I seriously think I would have more success trying to parent a chicken.

Drinking / Eating

We’ve had a big break through with his drinking! AT LAST! He pretty regularly will drink water and / or orange juice from an open cup these days, at least with Matt or I. It’s still a work in progress with his other caregivers at daycare / my mom’s house, but it’s definitely coming along. It’s funny, we noticed how intrigued he was when we would drink water from a glass in front of him, and then one of us (can’t remember who – most likely Matt) tentatively offered the glass to him….and didn’t he gulp the water down straight out of the glass?! Guess our little man just has no time or patience for sippy cups or plastic cups…..full on, adult size glasses of water it is for our 13 month old.

*Insert straight, terrified face here*

Eating has been interesting over the past month, as Austin has basically entirely given up his pureed foods now. I’m not overly happy about this, because the purees were a good way for us to make sure that he was getting enough vegetables, and also for us to sneak some milk into him without him realizing….but it’s also a good sign for his development that he doesn’t need / want them anymore. We just need to be more diligent about making sure that he gets enough vegetables from his food.

Walking

We still don’t have an independent walker, but he’s trucking along and getting closer every day! He’s super sturdy on his feet, loves to climb on everything, and once or twice has let go and taken a half step or so before he crumbled down again. My guess is that he will be walking by Christmas!

Christmas 

We did a set of Christmas pictures last weekend, and it ended up conflicting with his nap schedule, so I’m crossing my fingers and praying to God that we get at least a few good ones out of what ended up being a bit of a disaster shoot!

I am so super excited for this Christmas. Last year really kind of got squashed by the fact that my Dad was so super sick, so I’m really looking forward to making up for it this year.

Wearing

It’s becoming more and more fun to dress Austin these days, because he doesn’t only have to wear onesies anymore! For a while there, I didn’t really want to put him in t-shirts or sweaters or anything that didn’t have a button down between his legs because he was rolling and being picked up a ton, and shirts would have just rode up on him and been uncomfortable. These days though, he’s a lot more independent and spends a lot less time on his back and more time standing, so it’s starting to make sense to wear “real clothes”…..and OH MY LAWD is it ever fun to buy these clothes!! It’s like a whole new world has opened up to me!! Eeeee!!

My Recovery

I think that I am almost ready to close the book on this chapter once and for all. I had an MRI done back in September, and finally got the results at the end of October. The results showed a completely clear scan, no evidence of any structural damage or abnormalities. I’ve been feeling great, symptoms keep diminishing every day…. and I think I’m just about ready to dust my hands off and close this book once and for all.

CAN I GET A HALLLLLLLELUJAH?!

Well, on that super positive note, I’ll leave it there for this month! I can’t believe the next time that I check in it will be December!! So many fun things are coming up, and I just can’t wait!!

All our love,

-Sara xo

Happy Birthday Austin!

Hi Baby,

Happy 1st Birthday to you!! I can’t believe that it’s been a full year that you’ve been here with us!! It feels like just yesterday, and at the same time, I can’t even remember life without you.

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With the turn of your first year, I’ve spent so much time reflecting on those early days when everything seemed completely and totally overwhelming and insurmountable, and like we would never “get it”. I remember the very first time that your Grandma and I took you to your first doctors appointment out of the house, and neither one of us could figure out how to open up your stroller for the first time, so we had to ask another pregnant lady in the parking lot how to do it. Your mama had a major meltdown in the car about that one, I felt like such a failure for you that day. It’s truly unbelievable to think about the two of us on that day, compared to now.

You have turned into such a cheeky little monkey, with the best little personality! You are such a busy little beaver, always on the move with somewhere to be or something to do. You are a total pro at standing up and cruising around on anything and everything now, and I know you’ll be walking ANY day (God help me). You also love to babble and you’ve started imitating a lot of the things that people say to you which is SO super funny. Right now, you love to make a noise that sounds a lot like “SHEESH”, which is hilarious because we say that a lot around our house, and you seem to have picked up on it! You have the biggest, deepest belly laugh too, and sometimes you get laughing so hard (usually at something your Dad is doing) that you literally fall over!

You’ve started daycare now my love, and it’s breaking your mama’s heart. I miss you so much when you go, and it just kills me when you have a sad moment there and I’m not there to make it better for you. I think all things considered, you are doing really well with the transition, but it definitely isn’t the easiest on either of us. I can’t believe how exhausted you are when you come home at the end of the day! That must mean that you are learning lots and having lots of fun.

You’ve been doing a lot better with your drinking water and orange juice (still not a milk boy), although you still don’t regularly drink from your cup. You do love your solid foods though, so I’m trying not to worry too much. I’m hoping that whenever you get a chance to read this letter, that you’ll laugh at your 1 year old self who SO steadfastly refused to drink anything!

We had about a week long birthday celebration for you, starting on Tuesday (your actual birthday) and finishing on Saturday with a family get together). Your Grandma Dianne was here at the house with us on your actual birthday, and it was such a nice, quiet night. You don’t love huge crowds or big scenes, so it was the perfect quiet environment for you to really let loose and enjoy the evening. You had THE funniest look on your face when your Dad brought your birthday cupcake and candle around the corner (ask me to see that video one day please – you will absolutely die laughing), and I will never forget the way your eyes were shining with delight. You weren’t a huge fan of the cupcake icing, but I don’t blame you, you’ve been eating pureed kale and peas for the past year, so it’s really no surprise that icing doesn’t taste good to you. It’s onwards and upwards in the food department from here, and I’m sure your 1 year + foods will be much better than the infant foods were!

Saturday’s get together was a ton of fun for all of us too. We kept it pretty small and just had our families, and your Auntie Lindsay and Lee here, but it was a bit of a mad house anyways with your Uncle Neil & Kaitlyn’s puppy Hayley and Auntie Lindsay’s and Lee’s new puppy Bennett! Oh my gosh, the puppies were so cute and funny together, and when we added you into the mix, it was so hilarious. You got a few good licks to the face! You were a bit tired by the end of this party, so your cake didn’t go over very well, but you had a bit more fun with the leftovers later on in the evening.

You have changed me in every way possible my love, all 100% for the better. I have so much more empathy now for people in all situations. I’m a little better at going with the flow, although I still do like things to be planned out whenever possible. My heart is full of about 1000x more love and appreciation for health and for life. I’ve never been more clear in my life on my priorities and what matters to me. I truly have you to thank for so much.

I am so, beyond proud of you and everything that you’ve accomplished this year. You’ve been such a good little baby, and although there have been a lot of really hard moments, when I look back at them now, none of them seem that bad at all. I would give just about anything to rewind and live this year over again; even the hard parts. I will hold dear to my heart and cherish the memories of our sleepy mornings, hours on your foam mat, endless driving around Burlington with Iced Capps, Mommy & Me classes, sing songs, silly faces, crazy antics around the house, diaper blowouts, and all the rest of it for all the days of my life.

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I am trying my best to channel my wistful sadness into excitement for all of the happy memories to come. I can’t even begin to imagine how much fun this year is going to be with you as a 1 year old, but I know first hand now, how fast time goes. So my promise to you going into your 2nd year, is to do my very best to not let the hard parts upset me, to roll with the punches and keep focused on the bigger picture (that’s YOU!), and to drink in all of the moments as they happen.

I love you now, I’ll love you forever and ever sweet baby. Happy 1st Birthday!

All my love,

-Your Mommy xo

PS Mark my words – the Leafs win the cup in 2019 😉

11 Months

Happy Sunday!

I can’t believe that this will be my last Austin update before my little monkey turns 1!!! I keep replaying over the question “how old is he now?” and my answer of “1!” in my head, and it just sounds completely bizarre to me. This has absolutely been the fastest year of my life, even though some moments have definitely not felt like they went by overly quickly 😉

Austin has been so much fun this month, as always, and constantly makes us laugh. He’s been changing every day, and is currently in the awkward “I really desperately want to walk, but can’t quite do it on my own yet” phase, so the poor guy has taken a few nasty spills trying to get himself up and on the go. He pulls himself up to stand on EV-ERY-THING, and has gotten really good at cruising around while holding onto furniture (or other humans, toys, or whatever else he can get his little paws on lol). He’s also gotten really good at crawling up the stairs! Eeks! He loves to scramble over to the stairs and start climbing up without anyone behind him, and then turn around to look at you with a cheeky grin like “See! I’m doing it on my own!”. Little turkey!

It’s been a little while since I wrote about my own recovery, but I’ve been feeling really good, and have been proud of my progress mentally and physically over the past few months. I really do feel like a new person since my “Surrender” post, and am confident that things are going to be okay for me in the long term. I haven’t tackled any high impact exercise for several months, and I’ve found that my body really does feel better not doing impact stuff for now. Maybe one day I’ll dip my toe back in that pond, but for now, I’m happy being able to attack resistance training with some vigour, and that has to be good enough for me. Now that I’ve been feeling really good, I’ve been feeling the itch to get myself back in shape, and really want to find another day or two a week that I can get to the gym beyond my two classes that I teach a week. It’s a work in progress!

We are getting more and more settled into our new house every day, and the renovations are almost done!! I’m hoping that they will only be here finishing up a few small tasks for one more week, and then out of our hair for good!! The thing I’m most excited about is having Austin’s playroom all setup for him to really go wild in. I’ll post pictures of it once it’s all setup and ready to go!!

All About Austin – 11 Month Edition

Favourite Foods: Well, if there was ever any doubt that Austin was my son, his absolute passionate love affair with eating has squashed any and all of it. I’ve never seen a child love food as much as Austin does! He’s still obsessed with shredded cheddar cheese, but he also loves pretty much all juicy fruits like watermelons, oranges, strawberries, blueberries…you name it. He’s also a big fan of chicken most days, and will spend up to a half hour just sitting in his high chair grazing on whatever you give him! There are very few foods that he doesn’t like!

Car Seat: Austin is pretty much outgrown and way over his bucket car seat, so for his first birthday we’ve got him the big convertible car seat that stays in the car, and I can’t begin to tell you how T-H-R-I-L-L-E-D I am to not have to deal with that huge, heavy car seat anymore!!! I wanted to just start using the car seat right away, but Matt is making us wait for his birthday….grumble grumble.

Soother: He’s recently switched over to a new “soothie” brand soother with this stuffed animal giraffe hanging off the end of it LOL…he’s had it since he was born, but never showed any interest in it…now he’s always boogie-ing around with a giraffe hanging out of his mouth, and it just cracks me up. This one has been good for him in his crib because it’s easier for him to find in the dark, which saves us from having to get up and get his soother for him 2,500 times a night *fist pump*

Drinking Strike of 2018: Still going strong. We had a little bit of success a few weeks ago, and sometimes he will drink from an open cup, but it isn’t consistent, and it isn’t a lot. The most he will drink is freshly squeezed orange juice, but he really doesn’t dig water or milk to drink on its own (little does he know, we’ve been sneaking whole milk into his food for months now…mua ha ha ha). I have moments where I get super frustrated about this, and why it has to be so hard like this, but for the most part, I’m comfortable that he’s getting the fluids he needs in some way or another and that he’s healthy and hydrated. I haven’t made another follow-up with our pediatrician, but probably owe her a phone call…. sigh.

Daycare: Shoot me please. I literally dread Austin going to daycare and me going back to work every day like it’s the plague. I know that it’s going to be a nightmare. Like I’ve written before, Austin is a really shy little baby in public, and really prefers to be at home or with his family that he knows and trusts. I’ve tried to leave him in a child minding once before and it went terribly. I just know that daycare will be the same. Everyone says that kids get over it quickly, but I don’t think that’s true for Austin, and I really am not okay with the idea of him crying his little heart out thinking that I’ve abandoned him 😦 break my heart 😦

First Birthday: I’m working away on planning Austin’s first birthday party and although I don’t want time to go by because I am truly the transitions coming in October, I am super excited for the celebrations! We’ve already done a cake smash photo shoot which was amazing and super fun, and I’m planning a few fun things to do with the pictures during  the party! I’m really hoping that it will be a fun day for everyone, but most of all Austin!

 

Well, I think that’s all for now, but we have a huge month coming up! Austin’s birthday, a trip up to Manitoulin Island for my cousin’s wedding, Thanksgiving….it’s the most wonderful time of the year!

I’ll be back with an update around Austin’s birthday – but wanted to tell you how much I appreciate you following along with our crazy roller coaster of a year! I’m so thrilled to have the memories from the last year documented on this blog, and to share them with you. Knowing that you’ve been out there following along has given me the kick in the pants that I needed to keep up with it, so THANK YOU!!

-Sara xo

9 & 10 Months

Holy Bananas, it’s September 1st. Where the H did Summer go?

I’ve never been a huge Summer lover like a lot of my friends seem to be. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t dislike Summer for any reason, but my heart has always belonged 100% to the Fall. Crisp, dewy morning air, cool evenings, knee high boots and sweaters, plaid everything, trips to the farm, pumpkin treats, Thanksgiving, Halloween…alllllllll of it is a big yes please from me! And now we have another reason to love the Fall: Austin’s birthday!

Can we take a minute to let that soak in please?

Austin’s 1st birthday is just over 2 months away. It honestly feels like no more than 6 weeks ago that I was writing my big welcome to the world post and now I’m almost the mother of a 1 year old. Insanity.

It’s been a GIGANTIC couple of months over here in our little corner of the world; we’ve moved since my last Austin update! I’m writing this post from our brand new couch set in our brand new living room, surrounded by a mountain of boxes and chaos! Although we’re still very much settling in, our new house already feels so much like home, and we are sooooo, so super happy here.

We live on an absolutely amazing circle now that backs onto a gorgeous park, and we’ve had such a wonderful experience already getting to know our neighbours and other people in the neighbourhood.  It’s the type of place where people leave containers of dog treats and bowls of water out on their front lawn for people walking their dogs to stop and help themselves, and everyone you pass on the street waves to you, even if they’ve never met you before. We are soooo excited and feel so lucky that we snagged this house on the circle. We are doing some renovations on the lower levels of the house, and those should be wrapped up in the next few weeks, which will allow us to get fully unpacked and settled with things in their final homes.

Austin from Boston has been a champ through a VERY chaotic couple of months between packing and moving and unpacking, and has really made this whole process as smooth and easy as it could have been on us. It has been a bit of a challenging couple of months in another way though.

About 5 or 6 weeks ago now, Austin started to start refusing his bottle at feedings. It started off gradually, and he just wouldn’t finish his full bottle. Then progressed to him not wanting the bottle at all for certain feeds. Then progressed to full on bottle refusal. He is also refusing all cups and different bottles. We’ve been struggling a lot trying to get liquids into him in any way, and seem to be in a bit of a holding pattern now with him getting all of his liquids mixed into his pureed foods, by eating water-rich foods like watermelons and oranges and by giving him liquids on a spoon…but we are now stuck in a really stressful position where his pediatrician (yep, got ourselves one of those now….sigh) wants to run some really invasive and traumatic tests down his throat to see if there is a physical problem that could be preventing him from drinking. My mama bear horns are coming out big time, and I’m feeling super defensive of my little man. My issue with the whole situation is that Austin is doing so incredibly well in every way, aside from the drinking strike of 2018. He’s well hydrated from all of the milk in his foods, full of energy, great appetite, eats solid foods like a CHAMP, gaining weight like crazy, progressing with his development and milestones well, and is just all around my happy, cheeky, stubborn little guy that I’ve known from Day 1.

A lot of people have told me over the past two years to trust my gut, and that my mama instincts won’t often lead me astray. And really and truly, my mama instinct is telling me that this is a behavioural thing that will eventually pass or evolve. I’m really digging in my heels and preparing for a fight on this, because I won’t be agreeing to subjecting Austin to any tests unless (God forbid) his health took a downturn.

Put your money on me folks, I can take this pediatrician lol

ANYWAYS… this whole situation has been a huge source of stress and worry for me, but in and amongst all of that, Austin has been doing amazing!

All About Austin – 9 & 10 Month Edition 

Favourite Foods: Holy crap does this kid every love his solid foods now! He eats like a horse (not unlike his mama lol) and LOVES shredded cheddar cheese more then anything on the planet. He shovels fistfuls of it into his mouth at a time. Also really loves my garlic green beans, strawberries and oranges right now!

Least Favourite Foods: Still not a big fan of prunes lol also doesn’t love creamed corn… what can I say, when he makes up his mind about something, he makes up his mind! (See: Drinking Crisis 2018)

Sleeping: Reeeeally well, I feel like we’re finally somewhat out of the woods with the sleeping disaster of the past 11 months. He sleeps through the night pretty consistently now, and is up around 7am every day. We’ve found ourselves on a 2-3-4 schedule during the day, meaning that he naps about 2 hours after he wakes up in the morning around 9ish, then about 3 hours after he wakes up from that nap around 2 – 2:30ish, and then goes to bed about 4 hours after he wakes up from that nap around 7:30 – 8:00ish. It’s working really well for us, he’s like a little clock now, gets tired and cranky right on the button!

Mobility: Houston, we have a stander. Austin’s latest and greatest trick is scrambling over to any and everything he can get his hands on and pulling himself up to stand. He thinks he’s soooooooo clever lol I just love it! He’s taken a couple of nasty spills toppling over before we could get to him, but seems to be pretty resilient. He walks around holding onto our hands now as well, but is still pretty unsteady on his feet even while holding onto our hands (we call it the drunk Elvis walk because his hips and pelvis go a little crazy while he’s doing it LOL). He’s definitely working on it though, and is super determined to get walking, even though I think it’s still a little ways away!

Personality: More and more of Austin’s personality is coming out every day, and it’s becoming very obvious that our sweet little baby is a shy one. He really doesn’t love the group setting, and really prefers to be at home in his environment with Matt and I. At home he’s a total clown, always full of big laughs and smiles and getting into everything…but in group environments, he is really scared and shy and clings onto Matt or I with all his might, normally while crying 😦 I’m not really sure where this has come from, because we’ve been going to Mom & Tot classes together since he was about 3 months old…. but it’s something that we’ll have to work on together because……..

Daycare: We have a start date for daycare….October 16th. My heart shatters into a million pieces every time I think about it. Because Austin is really quite shy and reserved in a group setting, I really don’t know how he’s going to do at daycare. I can’t even think about it to be honest, it just stresses me out and upsets me 😦

Birthday Celebrations: I’m starting to work on planning Austin’s first birthday party!! Eee!! I’m so excited for it (although I also want time to STOP), and in true first time parent style am going way over the top I’m sure. I’m toying with a few ideas for the party right now, but want to start getting things locked down soon!

Guaranteed to Make Him Laugh: Throwing him in the air (lol), stooping down quickly with him in your arms, blowing on his face so that his hair blows off his forehead (lol), making animal sounds (duck quacks are his favourite), hiding around corners and jumping out and yelling PEEK as high pitched as you can, sticking your hand up his onesie shirt and ticking his bare chest, blowing raspberries on his bare belly…. the list could go on and on and on. I swear Austin spends 75% of his day laughing, and my god when he gets laughing can he ever get going! His laugh has evolved into this real little person laugh, and sometimes he laughs so hard that it stops making sound LOL it just kills me…

Fall Fun: I am sooo excited for all of the Fall activities to come this year! We took Austin to the pumpkin patch last year when he was literally about 10 days old, but this year should be quite a bit different! He will be 1 by the time we go to the farm, maybe even walking!? I’m planning a couple of trips to the farm for sure, and starting to think about our Halloween costumes too! Last year we just took him dressed in a lion costume over to my parents house, but this year I think he could handle a few houses of trick or treating! We are trying to come up with a good “trio” costume for Matt, Austin and I to be together….

Favourite Books: I was worried very early on in Austin’s life that we weren’t reading to him enough, but man oh man are we making up for it now. We probably read about 20 stories a day to him, no word of a lie. He LOVES books so much, they are his absolute, 100% favourite thing to occupy himself with. His very favourites are “The Little Blue Truck” and “The Very Hungry Caterpillar”. He also likes “Brown Bear Brown Bear” and “I Have to Go”….and really any other book he can get his hands on! I’m so happy that he likes books and likes to be read to, I really hope that this continues!

All in all it’s been a busy and stressful, but also wonderful couple of months. I promise to be back here again BEFORE Austin’s first birthday! In the meantime, enjoy the start to Fall! Grab your plaid scarves and pumpkin scones!

-Sara xo

 

 

Surrender

Hi Friends,

Today I’m switching gears a little bit from my normal baby chat and Austin updates to tackle a big behemoth of a topic that I’ve been rolling around for a long time now.

Things have been pretty good around here; renovations at our new house are well underway and Matt and I are going through everything we own and trying to purge as much as we can leading up to our big move on August 25th. Austin has been doing more and more each day, and is just so much fun to hang out with, and we’re getting ready for a road trip up to Sault Ste. Marie next weekend to take Austin to meet my mom’s side of the family and spend some time with his Great Grandma!

With all of this wonderful stuff going on, I’ve also been fighting a constant battle against the fear, anxiety and sadness over the state of my body and the long term prognosis for a full recovery from our birth. I met with a specialist this past week who had an incredibly bleak prognosis for me, and basically told me that he would bet that I would have issues for life as a result of our birth experience. It’s been tough. Extremely tough.

Today I wanted to talk a bit about the underlying issues that I’m starting to see at play here. And that is the concept of expectations vs. reality.

Expectation is a nasty little bitch responsible for so, so much unhappiness in this world, don’t you think? How many hundreds of thousands of times have bad things happened because someone is pissed off, or sad, or disappointed or upset that something didn’t go the way that they expected it to go? It seems that we (in general, I totally see exceptions to this rule even within my own circle of family and friends) just aren’t as receptive to adjusting our expectations (or better yet, dropping expectations completely) as we should be to maximize our own happiness. I’m culprit number one for this.

I’ve been struggling so much looking at the long term prognosis for the rest of my life, because there’s a good possibility that it won’t be quite what I had expected. For some naive reason, I expected to be in perfect health for my entire life. I expected to be the super mom who ran marathons, did tuck jumps that awed and inspired her kids, all the while baking the best chocolate chip cookies on earth, being present for every activity they have, and being the best wife on earth. Now that something has happened to me that is threatening many aspects of this, I’m having a really hard time adjusting to the new reality of what could be.

So, just throwing it out there. What if we all worked to drop the expectations completely. Completely

Instead of expecting things to go a certain way, and then being devastated when things don’t turn out quite that way, what if we worked together to have goals and dreams and aspirations, but agreed to surrender to what is, instead of what could have been.

I wish every day that things had gone differently with our birth. I’ve cried a million tears or more over it. I’ve lavished more self-hate on myself in the past 10 months then you can begin to imagine; hating my body for how badly it failed us that day.

But the fact of the matter is: I can’t change how things went down that day. I just can’t. What’s happened has happened, and there isn’t anything I can do to change that.

And so I’m trying a new approach. And that is to surrender. Surrender to the past, because nothing can be changed back there. Surrender to my expectations for the future, and letting go of what I think should be, and being okay with what is.

I may not be in perfect health for the rest of my days as I expected to be. My body may not work 100% as I hoped it would, and I may deal with issues earlier in life then I had initially thought I would. But that doesn’t mean that I can’t live a wonderful, happy, rich and fulfilled life.

And so, I surrender. I surrender to what is in the past, and I surrender all expectations and what I naively thought I was owed for the future. And oddly enough, surrender feels like the greatest victory I’ve had so far.

Surrender

8 Months

Happy Canada Day from Matt, Austin and I!!

Well, actually, it’s just Austin and I over here for this long weekend; Matt is away for the weekend on a canoe trip with all three of his brothers and his Dad for a retirement celebration for his Dad, so Austin and I are holding down the fort here for the weekend, along with Matt’s mom!

It’s been a while since Austin and I have had an extended time without Matt around, but we’ve been managing well and having lots of fun together so far. In fact, truth be told, I’m actually kind of enjoying having my little muffin all to myself!

Austin is just about 9 months now, and he is in this absolutely amazing stage of his life where he interacts with us so much now, is so quick and easy to make laugh or smile, and has this cheeky, determined, focused little personality that comes out more and more every day. I’m pretty much just absolutely obsessed with him and nothing makes me happier then making him laugh his little buns off (and man, when he gets going, can he laugh his little buns off! LOL)

I thought for this update, I’d do a bit of a different format and tell you….

All About Austin (8 Month Edition)

Favourite Foods: Baby Mum Mum crackers (veggie flavour) and sweet potato puree

Least Favourite Foods: Prunes, Peas, Green Beans and Creamed Corn (lol the kid is crazy when it comes to the corn, I think it smells so good!)

Sleeping: Pretty well! I’d say about 4 – 5 nights a week he will sleep through the night for us, and the other nights he will be up once max. Not too bad. I will say that I’m feeling even more tired then I was before though; possibly because we’re starting to catch up on a little bit of sleep now?

Naps: Pretty consistently every 2 – 3 hours during the day…progress!

Crawling: Army crawling!! A few weeks ago, he started to show signs that he was interested in getting on the move, and sure enough, over the past few weeks, he’s progressed to doing what we call the “drunk inchworm” across the floor in pursuit of his favourite toys LOL…it’s seriously so funny to watch. He hasn’t quite made his way onto all fours yet, but I’m sure it’s coming! He’s pretty good with his inchworm though, I must say!

Favourite Toys: The remote control (HANDS DOWN), and my car keys. Go figure. Also, pretty much any household item that he isn’t allowed to have. Here’s lookin’ at you Swiffer.

Swimming: Like a little fish! We did another round of swimming lessons this month, and he’s still loving it! He LOVES to kick, kick, kick his little legs, and pretty much does it non-stop when he’s in the water!

Shots: Next set of vaccines is scheduled for this coming Friday, and I’m dreading it. I just despise the thought of anything hurting him, or making him feel unwell. Sigh. We will also get to check his weight and height at this appointment, and I am looking forward to that! The last time we weighed him was back on April 19th and he was 16 lbs 5 oz. I’m  hoping that he is at least 18 or 19 pounds now!

Loves to Laugh At: Pretty much anything LOL, but especially loves when I make elephant “clomping” sounds, especially when I walk around with him on my shoulders, also loves having his belly tickled, or when you play peekaboo around the corner with him. The higher pitched the “PEEK”, the bigger the laugh. Also, when I lower my sunglasses and look at him in the rearview mirror in the car. LOL. I pretty much spend 75% of my day trying to make this little guy laugh.

Speaking: Consonants! He pretty regularly babbles “mamamamama” now, and we’re pretty sure we’ve heard lots of other consonants in there as well! I don’t think he really has associated me with the words “mama”, so I’m not calling this his first word officially, but he’s doing pretty well with his babble speak!

Wearing: Still mostly sleepers around the house lol….I just don’t have it in me to get him dressed in nice clothes when we’re just playing around the house, but I do try to get him dressed in some of his cute little clothes when we go out to art or music class. His 9 month clothes are getting too small for him already though….almost time for another wardrobe update!

Vacations: No more for us for a little while! We are taking a family trip with my family up to Manitoulin Island in October for my cousin’s wedding, but apart from that, we are sticking around town for the summer! I’m hopeful to take Austin to the park a bit more when the weather cools (the F) down a bit, and maybe to the splash pad when he gets a bit more mobile and can enjoy it more!

In general, it’s just been a really, really awesome month for us. I feel like we’re settling into our roles and our family dynamic so well, and really finding our groove. I just couldn’t be more in love with Austin; just thinking about it wells me up sometimes. I would do anything for him, literally anything; he is the absolute best part of my day and I just feel like this is exactly what I was put on this earth to do. It feels really good.

In other news, Matt and I have been busy as bees with all of the renovations at our new house (which we took possession of back on June 1st – EEK!), and it’s looking amazing so far! We’re 3 weeks into the 8 week renovation now, and the entire house is really starting to take shape and feel like it will be a really handsome family home for us.

The original owners of this house lived in it for 40 years, before selling it to the last owners who renovated the first three levels and sold it to us. I just love the idea of breathing new life into this house and bringing a new family into it to love on it again. I’m probably the most excited to have a big playroom in this house for Austin to cruise around in, and a huge park in the backyard; our small townhouse living room is really cramping his style now that he’s on the move!

I’ve been still working on my recovery, and am back off of high impact activity again after changing physiotherapists to a new (and very good) one, who advised against it for now. Honestly, I’m fine with that, because any exercise at all is just a major stress inducer right now for me because sometimes it brings on symptoms and problems for me. I’m also dealing with a lot of anxiety and mental trouble with healing and accepting what my body is now, and how it functions for me (or doesn’t). I’d like to say it’s a work in progress, but I’m honestly not even really working on it right now. I’m feeling a bit stalled to be honest.

Anyways – I think that’s it on our end! Wishing you and your family a very happy Canada Day, or 4th of July long weekend, and I hope your home is as full of love and laughter as ours is right now!

-Sara xo