Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Life Lately

Max: the last half hour of the night before bed, he gets to choose an activity to do with me. The activity changes each night, but cannot be repeated two nights in a row. We either color (in his Spiderman book), read as many books as he wants, or play. The play almost always involves me pretending to be a damsel in distress as he turns into a Zombie or Me as the Zombie chasing him as he squeals around the house.

Max: we HAVE to watch Michael Jackson's Thriller music video upon waking in the morning and after nap. He just gained confidence watching this video in the last couple months, whereas previously he couldn't even get passed the scene of the couple walking in the 1950's outfit. He's just obsessed with this video! It's not really an appropriate video for kids as it's quite scary. Developmentally he can blur the lines between reality and fantasy, so far though he's comforted by the night light in our room, cosleeping with Mikkel and I, playing pretend zombie, asking a million questions about zombies, and repeat viewing of the video. He doesn't like to night sleep or nap with the closet opened though and has no problem napping by himself in a dim room- doing something right?! lol

Mikkel: she decided she no longer wants to be spoon fed anything after breakfast so baby led weaning is what we've been doing lately. My friend just reminded me that i used to do this with Max (i don't remember this at all), nearly everyday she's been getting mojo's from Safeway. she LOVES them, they're 'healthy' K+, she loves to pick them up and eat eat eat!

Mikkel: again with food, i have so many frozen food cubes for the 6-8month portion phase. Since she's anti spoon, i just got some ground chicken and made mini patties/meatballs of various chicken + veg combo. I fry them and chop them up for her for lunch or dinner = insta meal all in one. As an alternative, she also gets a scrambled egg yolk almost every single day because she can pick this up and eat it, great for transport! I'm running dry on food ideas, clearly.

Me: I'm obsessed with trying to find this Chanel mini square flap on the preloved market

I'm also obsessed with finding the dupes of these Chanel slingback's in a lower block heel and much lower price!

Me: I spend my free time watching YouTube videos, SnapChat, and Instagram perusing. My current fave channels are: 
do you have any recommendations? let me know!

Life lately.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Full Circle! Mikkel is 9 months old!

my return to work has a date: SEPTEMBER 16, 2016  aggghhhhhhh !

hair: dark brown and fuzzy looking in texture--- perhaps waves and curls in future?
eyes: looking brown!
weight: no idea, but she's heavy
diapers: size 4 baby dry

head: hair seems thicker and definitely brown. hair has grown past the crest of her ears and needs to be tucked back. i think this girl is showing some fuzzy hair texture = curls like husband who has a mop for hair. this last month was hard as hell for teething! we now have 6 TEETH!! 2 upper centres, and 4 bottom row centres. the 8th month was hell, i said that already didnt i? can't stress that enough.

cries: i still feel like she's able to express herself well with cries. lots of crying out overnight this month because of teething and just because. my nipples were literally pacifiers. this last month, she needed to be on the breast to be put back to sleep. she also doesn't fall asleep immediately post unlatch like before. within 5-45 minutes she would wake up crying out because she isn't sleeping doesn't really know how to self soothe yet..i guess? i say this because she knows how to soothe herself to sleep for nap and when being put down for night sleep, but hasnt had opportunities to learn on her own overnight. it's exhausting to wake up almost every hour overnight, i get fed up at 430-5am.

GI: appetite is pretty good. breakfast i usually feed her 1 cube applesauce with cinnamon and mixed grains. for lunches ive made peas/carrots/sweet white potato/yams/butternut squash/brocolli/cauliflower/pumpkin so any of those combos. For dinner, she eats what we're eating for dinner. she's accepting of food if i feed her by hand which is great for trying out new things. for the most part, it's Baby led weaning for dinner as evidenced by the huge mess that needs to be cleaned up and the bath she needs. dinner time she also gets her beloved rice rusks and gerber stars for crunch and sweetness as dessert. at this time, about the last week of may she's begun to refuse the spoon so I'm currently figuring out ways to transform the frozen foods into little sausages or pancakes or muffins for her to feed herself.

feeding: i always read about those babies that pulled their mom's shirt down and was really aggressive with their message of needing to feed. Max was never liked that at all and I never understood it. Of course, Mikkel turns out to be one of those babies who really really really loves the breast. when she's on the carrier, Max and I have an inside joke that she's doing her 'chicken' move because she's literally pecking at my cleavage hinting me that she wants to be on the breast (hungry or not). This month she learned to climb on me and basically shove her face on my chest and root for the breast even when I'm heavily clothed! when she's near, she pulls down my shirt and or tackles me with her face plants on my shirt. she just loves to nuzzle her face on my bosom. when she's fussy, i just put her on the breast and you can see those hormones instantly working their sleep/calm magic, it's like a spell! of course, it's also a little worrisome for when i go back to work.

GU: going strong with #4 baby dry

skin/body: heat rash behind left leg only, exacerbated by carrier when it's very hot out. Penaten seems to be very helpful. thighs are to die for. creases on arm and feet showing some tan lines. super kissable.

communication: this month she's learned to 'offer' items to me and others. by offer, she picks something up or takes something from you, assesses it, then looks you in the eye holding same object up, and lets go once you touch it. ADORABLE. she does a lot of shrieking and squawking, like a lot. she's ok with other people holding her and I'm not around, but once she hears my voice she's insta-whiny and wants me. she wakes up sometime between 530-630am and rolls around talking to herself in a soft voice for a while, when her volume escalates is when i have to scoop her out of the room so as she doesn't wake up Max. loves to kiss with wide open mouth slobbery kisses. tonnes of babbling!

muscle strength: she's learned to recline if someone is there, mainly if I'm behind her. sitting up strong. she likes to stand and have someone hold her hands/body but not able to stand erect on her own. no crawling but while sitting up she spread her legs far apart to reach for items and often resulting in her landing on her tummy, then squawking as she doesn't like the position. she's not able to pull herself up yet. impossible to keep her still while supine. super dangerous if sitting on the couch as she'll spread her legs and lunge forward within the blink of an eye and fall off (hasn't happened yet).

hands:  claws, cutting nails every 3 days. pincer grasp is there. continues to love to knead and pinch my breast while feeding...hurts.

^^ We wanted them to get along, Max however has exceeded our expectations. 
He is his best with her and to her ^^

legs: really disliking the jumperoo. still loves the jolly jumper. toes are my toes!

play: She learned how to clap this month. kind of knows how to wave on command. blowing raspberries (check my instagram). loves peekaboo. loves opening up the box of crayons and throwing things around everywhere. loves duplo, and pulling books off the shelf. hot wheels in mouth (dangerous).

sleep: bedtime routine starts at 615pm, she baths now in the bathroom sink instead of being wiped down as it's impossible to keep her still while supine (including diaper changes). her pre-bed feeds aren't meal sized as it hasn't been long since dinner ended. feed for 10 mins, hold her for about 7-10 minutes, and she's asleep enough to be put down in crib- stir awake briefly - but go to sleep on her own with no crying.  when Max and i would come into the room at 10, she would hear our hustling and instantly wake. I've been bringing her into bed with us, per Max's request, but this results in her waking every 45mins-hour until i get fed up at 5-ish AM to resoothe her back to sleep via breast. this last few days i didnt scoop her in at the usual time, she whined for a few minutes, and went back to sleep till 2am! at that time, i scooped her in with us, and the usual ever 45-60min resoothe occurred but i wasn't as irritable i got to sleep from 1030pm-2am without fuss. anyhow, sometime this month, i realized she's big enough to just latch on to either breast while I'm lying down instead of me having to sit up and position her. the downside is one boob is always leaking. get up time for me/us is a horrifying 6am (sometimes 630am). never in my life have i imagined being ok with this, but it is what it is. i plop her on the couch with toys, lie down and use my body as a barrier, and shut my eyes for as long as she lets me...approx 15-30 mins (read: she's squawking and hitting me with toys while I'm preventing her from falling off the couch).

^^ clap clap clap! ^^

how she sleeps: YEP, day time carrier only. Naps changed this month from 3 to 2. Now almost always 30 minutes for first nap (usually 10am) and 1.5hours for second 2-3pm something. whatever the combination, it's usually a total of 2 hours for nap. sleep at night 7pm-6am on average. still using badger sleep balm for night sleep and she kisses 2 toys before night sleep...no idea if it's helping as a crutch aid!!

as for me: My period came in month 8. my skin isn't fabulous. coffee! i feel like I've gained weight. overall, something about this girl allows me to not be as irritable as i thought i would be with the sleep deprivation. it's true when they say 0-1 child is THE hardest, with this time around i feel like i can just kiss her and squish her and although I'm tired, I'm still feeling patient and good. this month though I've gone out shopping less because it just isn't worth it to get extra irritable by the end of the night (especially towards Max) from being overtired.

pressing questions:

  • how do i sleep train a child in a family bed environment? Max will not tolerate any prolonged crying of hers. 
  • should i start a bottle in month 11 so she can suck on something for comfort? it's really hard to plan ahead as literally babies change every month
  • has anyone ever heard of the DR. JAY GORDON sleep training method? 
  • how will she/Max sleep when I go back to work?
  • how can i preserve Max's need for uninterrupted rest overnight to function properly? his schedule of activities will increase come September 2016?

I need to enjoy my summer!! 

Friday, May 27, 2016

What Keeps me Sane-ish? Life Lately

I'm running on empty most days as sleep deprivation is no longer acute but running on chronic.

Mikkel cries out every.faqing.hour to heck even every 30-45 minutes over night because she's teething? maybe? and since i'm cosleeping with both and not wanting to wake #1 (who wants 2 cranky kids right?), i gotta pick the baby and myself up and move to the living room and try to sleep on the crappy cushioned couch that is so uncomfortable.

The faqing cat is all happy and curious why we're in the living room that it's jumping on the couch, meowing back and forth, moving here and there totally stimulating Mikkel when I want her to go to sleep. I often wish I have/had something to throw at him.

Max's tantrums are increasing in frequency; last night's for one because I manually turned his movie on using the DVD buttons when he wanted me to turn it on using the MISSING REMOTE.... grrr....

Like I say to every nurse-ling and nurse out there, "you gotta take care of yourself before you take care of other people." right? Here's what keeping me sane(ish) lately, taking it one day at a time.
  1. Coffee- i'm a coffee green horn. I start my day off (sometimes days don't actually end because I'm up every.faqing.hour from 12am yada yada yada) with 2 tablespoons of hot chocolate mix, 1 tablespoon of instant original roast coffee, and milk. I was never skeptical of coffee, but now I see and feel its power. Need it.
  2. Max's biology CD- his class learns a science subject every month and it's accompanied by music to which they perform at the end of every month. I really like the music and the lyrics as they're well written and catchy. I may have learned something or two as well. 
  3. Sunshine- when the week's weather looks hot, too hot for the month, I'm charged up and have plans to order food, visit family, keep kids on schedule, walk long distances, and do a crap load of stuff. When the forecast is bleak, i'm like 'is my computer fully charged?'
  4. Youtube Videos- i love watching youtube channels of people with Luxury handbag collections, reviews, unboxing. Living vicariously but also because if I were to choose to afford something, it would be beautiful bags! Which leads me to the next activity...
  5. Online shopping- the internet just makes it way too easy to shop online and return without hassle. somehow looking/touching an item that has a $100 price tag makes you think twice, but a $1000 price tag on a luxury good item that I can't touch (ebay, consignment, official luxury sites) seems like a good deal, especially when it's preloved.
  6. Creating wardrobe capsules- something about writing down the clothes I have for the season and mix/matching outerwear-pants-tops-shoes in different combinations is really fun for me. I like to say, "i have nothing to wear" a lot so the fact that I actually know what's in my closet and saving money instead of buying clothes makes me feel good. Thanks Pinterest for the endless outfit inspos! 
  7. Writing in my agenda- i feel more organized and in control of my time- control of something! Something I can look forward to and prepare for.
  8. High Waisted Jeans- just bought jeans that tuck everything in. I wear them often
  9. Play dates- hanging out with other friends babies? yes please! Nursing friends with babies? unfiltered chatter and of course, people who understand shift work and the challenges involved when you are away from your exclusively breastfed child for more than 14 hours a day x 4 days/week
  10. Watching the Social- i don't watch the show everyday, but every time I do I learn something from their debates. It's really how I stay current on the news nowadays too. Four intelligent and funny women with different perspectives, they're young and they don't all agree- love it!
  11. Tasty, Taste Made, Buzzfeed Food videos on your FB feed- WTF do i make for dinner this week? oh thanks for the ideas! Although I spend more time watching instead of recreating.
  12. Comfort food- diet Coke, diet pepsi, peanut M&M's, giant Superstore chocolate muffins, Pepperoncini flavoured chips, mojo's from Safeway, sushi with extra ginger and spicy mayo
  13. Funny Stuff on the Internet- love reading the comments section on anything. Meme's, some-ecards, spoofs, trolling, celebrity gossip etc.
  14. Going to the mall or Superstore with 1 child- 2 kids are too much to haul, especially as Vancouver isn't very wheel friendly. I like to hit the mall when someone is about to nap...peace and quiet! shopping is so therapeutic, there's absolute truth in retail therapy
  15. Organizing my drawers/files/clothes/stuff- Purging and organizing constantly. Feels like I can breathe. Even in condo living, there's always something
  16. Spontaneous picnics with the kids- something about bringing all the kids outside and sitting on a blanket while eating a meal is an instafix for restlessness and irritability- for the entire troop! 
  17. Realtylink.org- since there are some big moves happening in my family, i love looking at what's available and what's there for sale in the real estate market. So many beautifully furnished apartments and when there are open houses close to me, love going to those too to snoop around and get some ideas for my place
  18. Instagram/Snapchat/Facebook- updates, inspiration, current events, household swaps, pretty pictures etc
  19. Smitten Kitchen (via Instagram) and Pioneer Woman (via Food Network)- my sis introduced me to these two cooks, recipes are so yummy and easy. Pictures are beautiful and true to your own result. It feels good to add something new to the menu options at least once a month. When a 4 y/o eats it, and bits and pieces are also baby approved; win win!
  20. Overlapping sleep hours- there's an overlap in my day where Max, Mikkel and yes even the husband (who by no means deserves a nap but that's a whole other story) so the TV is off, the house is quiet except for my chosen noise, i'm not yet exhausted from the day, and it's not yet dark out. Tranquility, yes!
  21. Exercise- something about fresh air and change in environmental temperature really helps you snap out of the i'm-so-faqing-tired reality funk
  22. Reading books turned into movies- sometimes I'm so foggy, i just gotta go straight to the movie- which always sucks compared to the book! Yes, i finish the book...in a month or so.
It's the simple things in life.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Photography, take 2

Some recent finds on Max's SD card!
His first set of photos and the story behind his own digicam can be found HERE.
We also didnt have batteries for the longest time, where do you get rechargeable AA's nowadays?

^^ this is his Lego table in the corner of the playroom. Babies and Lego are 
a scary mix and I'm hyper vigilant about cleaning up not only because Mikkel 
can choke on them but also it's so f'ing painful to accidentally step on a piece ^^

^^ he's doing a #fromWhereIStand shot? ^^

^^ FaceTime with lolo ^^

^^ fancy vintage taxi ^^

^^ obligatory construction site ^^

^^ his first ever page of practicing letters ^^

^^ all the women he loves most in his life! aww! ^^

^^ bedtime story ^^

^^ best friend ^^

^^ i love this boy! first selfies!? ^^

Friday, May 13, 2016

Happy Nursing Week!

^^ yep! c/o pinterest ^^

Inspired by a fellow Vancouverite, mom blogger, and RN Andrea from Mama in the City!

You may be surprised to hear this, but nursing was never a dream of mine. I never had much of an exposure to the hospital or heck even the profession as a child- born 1982, broke my leg in the early 90's, and...well...that's basically it! Unlike many Filipino's you may know of, no one in my family were nurses! Bottom line, I had ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA what nurses did when I applied for nursing school. 

In the Spring of 2000, i was 'forced highly encouraged' to choose a path in life at the wee age of 17. I distinctly remember sitting by the lockers with my friends with our Uni applications in hand and trying to decide what in the hell i was going to be when I grew up. Like the typical child of first generation Canadian immigrants, I wasn't to "waste" time and money on the Arts. Moreover, it was unheard of to waste time, money, and momentum on a year off to travel and perhaps discover myself! A child of first generation immigrants was to know what they were going to be, graduate at the fastest amount of time possible, and get a job that is not only a lifetime career, but must be well paid- i know this situation was/is not unique to me, but I digress...

Anyhow, i was sitting in front of the lockers with friends; didnt want to apply for Arts or Science or Forestry (can't remember the other options). Nursing was a small little inconspicuous box, with prerequisites I had already completed. Again, no idea what nurses did despite the Uni's presentation on the faculty, but whatever...I applied! One school, one program, nothing else interested me. Fast forward to late Summer, i got into Nursing school! Whoop whoop (!!) and to my great relief, phew!
The 4 year degree went by super fast. When I graduated, I still hadn't grasped what nurses did! the first 2 years of our degree was to take whatever classes we wanted- possibly to 'grow up.' The last two years went through the summer and we were in the hospital along with needing to attend lectures and labs. I had terms/experiences in many fields and what interested me most was dabbling in a little bit of everything and learning as much acute care as I can so I had the skills to save my family (yes, i really thought this haha). 

I spent 2004-2011 in acute care at one of Vancouver's biggest hospitals- here, in the front line, i learned the scope of registered nursing, how hard they worked and how under appreciated they are. Yet, I loved the skills i learned, love the pace (most of the time), loved the organizing skills and the multitasking abilities i acquired, and most of all the people I met. I did stints in nursing preceptorship, nursing education, and nursing leadership- but at the end of it all, bedside nursing hands on work was my calling. In 2013, I moved up and onto palliative care and completed my Canadian Nurses Association specialty certification. Trust me when I say Palliative care is not all sadness, tears, and suffering. I really appreciate and feel honoured to be at the bedside of someone in the last stages of their life with access to drugs and interventions to alleviate pain and suffering from their illness (pain and suffering due to the actions of a family member(s) is another story!). Also, by being in palliative care i am much more sensitive to the importance of quality of life; individually defined of course. when i go home, i don't bring stress and sadness with me. My children make me appreciate what i have so much more deeply, they exude life (I'm also guilty of excessive shopping because hey, it makes me feel good too ha). 

In summary, although I didnt actively choose to be a nurse, I chose academic paths and had interests that led me to this career. If I had to do it over again, i'd do the exact same thing and heck, maybe actively/inactively inspire one of my children to become one too!

hi, my name is Mitzi, and ill be your nurse- maybe one day!

Happy nursing week!


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