IKEA – solo

Today, I’m treating myself.  Earlier this morning I was grumbling about having to clean up the mess I made from moving furnitures around last night.  M suggested that I don’t do any chores and just enjoy myself.  So I thought about it and here I am.  
Breakfast and a leisurely stroll at IKEA is what I need right now. Wi-fi and a $3.14 breakfast (tax included), it can’t get any better than this. Ok, the eggs aren’t the creamiest but the potatoes and sausage are good.  And free coffee refills. Who can argue?  Gotta love IKEA!

I’m in a nesting mood this week – because there are no kids around during the day. No kids means more work done!  Lots of tidying and organizing. Last night, while doing some online reading on how to deal with toys in all areas of the house, I learned that having one playroom with all the toys is not conducive to play.  

One strategy is to rotate toys.  Intelligent Nest suggests sorting toys (not sets or puzzles) into categories and then taking one toy from each category and placing it in a clear in or displaying them in an inviting way.  This rotation would occur weekly and it claims to increase play time as well as promote higher order thinking.  This strategy is especially beneficial to younger children. I’m definitely going to try it this week.  

Another strategy, also suggested by Intelligent Nest is to scatter toys around the house.  Not in a messy way. But deliberate placement to encourage appropriate developmental play. A very good example is to place the play kitchen near or in the actual kitchen so children can mimic adults and learn in their own way. Come to think of it, we did this for Z when he was a toddler and he loved it!!!  The challenge for us is finding the space to do it.  It’ll involve some rearrangement. 

Breakfast done.  Time to shop!

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It’s Happening 

It is Sunday – the day before W’s first day at daycare.  I have been so anxious and nervous for the last few days.  I wouldn’t be as worried if she wasn’t sick again.  This time, her cough came back and she’s got runny nose and discharge coming out from her tear ducts.  Poor girl!  She is really having it rough.  Last night and tonight, she fell asleep fast for bedtime but also woke up soon – like within the first hour.   So far, she has woken up twice and is just miserable.  Last night, I had to stay in the bed because every time she stirred, she would check for me.  If I wasn’t there, she’d wake and cry so I went to bed early.

Some updates on her communication skills.  I’ve been very impressed with her lately. Yesterday, she was pulling at her diaper shirt in the front and saying “papa” to me.  It turns out “papa” meant poopoo.  It clicked in when I remembered how she would say “papa” and wave her hand to say “bye bye to poopoo” as we flushed the toilet.  And guess what?  She poo’d when I put her on the potty.  I hope she doesn’t regress because our diaper use has reduced significantly and I quite like it.

Because she poos in the potty, we only use 2 pull-ups per day. A change in the morning when she wakes, a change before nap and a fresh one before bedtime.  She’s the most successful – maybe because I’m more familiar with her signs and cues.  It’s actually not that difficult to tell.  One just needs to pay more attention to their child.  In fact, this morning, when she woke up, she was tugging at her sleeper and grunting.  I knew she wanted it off and asked her if she needed to go potty and she did her whole body nodding.  So I asked M to take her and she did!


On Friday, I had both W and Z. He didn’t want to go back to the PFLC since most kids that attend are toddlers. I don’t blame him. So we hung out at Bayview Village instead. He’s been asking if I could take him to Chapters and Mastermind.Our first stop was the bookstore since it opened at 9:30 am. We stayed for about a hour, just browsing around. I let W loose and she enjoyed walking around the store. Z was on his own, checking out some books and toys.  He bought a new Big Nate book. He’s 7 and is reading books in the 9-12 category.

I took Z for lunch at South St. although he wanted pasta at Il Fornello’s.  It wasn’t going to open for another 30 min and I needed to take W home for a nap by noon.  W just ate fries since she wouldn’t eat the burger.  Of course, Z loves to pepper his food and he reached for the pepper mill to season his fries.  Next thing I know I hear the sound of a few hundred peppercorns spilling everywhere.  It was all over the tray, the table, and even a few got into the drink cup.  It was a mess.  Luckily, it was dry so I just brushed all of them onto the tray and disposed of them.  Hygiene reasons. Oh well.

Now that W is going to be at daycare, part of me feels sad, and part of me is happy.  I’m finally going to get some ME time – a whole week!   I just hope W adjusts well to daycare.  I know she’ll be upset when I drop her off but I also know that she’s in good hands.I’m worried about her crying during naptime and not sleeping enough.  I know.  I’m being a worry wart.  Who am I kidding?  This is child number three.  I should be used to it by now but I am not.  This kid is different.  Each of them are!  Sigh.

Already, my mind is racing with all the things I can will try to get done while I’m by myself.  The list will be long and I’ll have to be realistic.  Most importantly, I need to get a haircut.  This post pregnancy hair needs to be thinned out.  And maybe a manicure as well.

 

And it begins…

Tonight, I got to leave the house at 7:30pm.  M is doing books and bedtime with the kids.  It has been a while. I wanted to go to Value Village to shop.  The last time I went I scored well – finding tops I can wear for work. When V heard this she asked me to look for a shoulder cutout shirt and an off-the-shoulder sweater.  My goodness.  She’s only 5 and she’s already wanting to dress sexy! Scary.  What do you think? Should I encourage it?

Lately, I’ve been trying to spend as much time with W as possible since she’s going to be in daycare in a week. Yes, my baby is going to daycare.  That week will be my week to myself. I plan to get a haircut, get a massage, go through my wardrobe, go into school, and maybe some cleaning the house. Maybe.  We’ll see. 

In the last few days, W has learned about puppets – finger and hand puppets.  She’s so proud when I her put the puppet on.  She wiggles her little finger to make the puppet move.  I should also say that her latest love are squirrels.  We like to look out windows when we’re home and spot squirrels. She gets so excited. I’m thinking we should get our zoo membership again starting in the spring. She’d love it!!!

This afternoon, I was home with both girls. Z was at a friends’ house for a play date while M was at a training session for his SteamPlant. I let V paint my nails. While she was painting my nails, I browsed on Pinterest and found a pin that uses nail polish to create a marbling effect. 

Here’s one of them.  It’s a little messy and whatever container you use you just throw out after.  It’s super easy to do though and the results are stunning!    Definitely doable with kids.  And it’s a great way to use up some of the many nail polish bottles I have! 

Btw, the weather has returned to winter.  It was snowing when I went out to VV and chatime for bubble tea.  

Summer in Winter

I’m in my t-shirt and Capri pants. Its that warm out. Yeah. I’m out walking W for a nap.  The first attempt at noon didn’t last long – 30 min.  It’s so nice out, so I thought, ‘why not?”.  The wind is blowing but the sun is beating down so it’s nice and warm in the sun.  I’m thankful for weather like this.

On my walk, I did some errands.  As you know, M is gluten-free. I grabbed some items from the grocery store and came across this new gluten-free bread. I’m telling you, it is delicious.  More importantly, light and fluffy.  


Just look at the air pockets.  Never mind the chia seeds you don’t even taste them.  M spread Nutella on it and was in heaven eating it.  It’s that crazy good. 


Also, take a look at this strawberry.  It is ginormous. It’s probably the size of little Vs heart.  

 

Above Zero


Happy Valentine’s Day!

It feels like a while since I last posted.  What feels even longer is the this cough and cold that I’ve had since the last week of January.  I don’t recall being sick for this long ever.  Ever.  At most, it’s a week.  Every  morning I wake up with a lot of phlegm in my nasal cavity and my throat.  Admittedly, it hasn’t been that great for sleeping either.  I’m hoping to kick this soon coz it sucks to be sick!

On the plus side, the day started out with W waking up at 8.  That is late for her, considering she usually wakes between 6-6:45 am.  I should backtrack and tell you a bit about last night.  M has been putting her to bed after I read to her and nurse her for the last 2-3 weeks.  It has been going very well, until the last week.  W has been waking up crying multiple times before midnight.

Last night was no different.  W woke up crying every hour, after the third time, I took over since she was just miserable with M.  I ended up bringing her into our bed for the rest of the night.  I just needed her to sleep.  We are on the path to start sleep training sometime soon – before March.  We just have not decided on how and when exactly to begin.  M has volunteered to do it since I’m too weak for this.  I can not stand to hear her cry.  Anyhow, she slept pretty good for most of the  night, until the dreaded 4:30 am wakeup – this has been happening quite often lately.  So I took her back to her room, sat on the rocker and nursed her back to sleep.

By the time I brought her back into our bed, it was already minutes after six.  The other two kids were already awake.  I went back to sleep out of exhaustion and woke up around 7:35 am and left the room, with W still sleeping in the bed.  I went and got ready in the bathroom and helped V get ready as well.  M couldn’t change because W was in the room still.  So we waited until she woke up.  She was in a really good mood.  Immediately, I saw the opportunity to push her nap to after lunch in hopes of helping her ease the transition into the one-nap when she goes to daycare.

Currently, she’s been asleep since 12:20 pm.  I set up the 4th baby monitor camera (I know, we have four!  Why?  One for each of the two older kids and one in W’s room.  I didnt want to move it back and forth.)  in our room  so I could do things downstairs.  In the time I came down, I had lunch, set up the sous vide for the London Broil, made six number greeting cards, and started this post.  I love that I can be so much more productive when she’s sleeping.

I had a nice time with W this morning.  It’s so different when I don’t have to rush home to nap her after dropping V off at school.  Since we didn’t get to eat breakfast because of her late wakeup, we went to Starbucks.  We shared a breakfast sandwich and I had a tall Blonde coffee.  We sat for about half an hour and just relaxed.  W said hi to everyone we encountered. She really makes people giggle. After we went to the mall since I had a return to do.  I also needed to buy a gift for a bday party this weekend.

I love Walmart.  Ok, seriously, I found some really cute stuff there.  I know how a lot of people do not like Walmart, even M, but the stuff there is pretty good.  I loved the clothing I found.  I would totally wear them if they had adult sizes.  Since kids go through clothing so much as they grow, I find it’s to worth it to spend a lot on clothes they are not going to wear for a long time.  I don’t like spending more than $7-8 on tees.  Honestly, $4-5 is a great price!  I found a cute romper for V and I know she’s going to love it. She used to have one from H&M that she wore a lot, until she got it caught and it ripped at the thigh.  So I have cut off the legs and am planning to make them into short rompers instead.  Just haven’t gotten around to doing it yet.


Anyway, here are the cards I have made earlier.  Three of them I used a cut out from a wrapping paper and the other three I hand drew.  I quite like them.  I prefer them to the store-bought greeting cards since I find them so pricey.  I’m all about DIY and hand made.  If we could afford to, I would continue to stay home and craft and eventually sell what I make.  But we are not there yet. 

Shopping

This might sound weird.  I’m at a mall. But I’m online shopping.  Using the mall wifi. Yeah.  W is napping in the stroller and I just got to keep moving. It’s nice and quiet right now because schools not out yet.

Lately I’ve been wanting to do something about my hair. It’s grown so long and feels heavy. I haven’t cut it since I was pregnant with W.  I’m due for a cut and I’ve been super lazy about styling it.  One style I want to try is giving it some waves.  I’m on the hunt for a curling wand – one that’s tapered so I can get a variety of curl styles.

Also, I visited a Sephora store to get some advice on how to fill my brows and apply blush. As much as Pinterest and YouTube are great, it still is better in person to see how it’s done. A useful tip I walked away with was to start at the tail of my eyebrows so that I don’t overdo the top part of my eyebrows.  I tried it and it works!

Speaking of curling hair, I thought I’d try this hack for curling V’s hair.  I used an elastic hairband and you basically put it around the head.  Then, strand by strand, you twist and put it around the band, gathering more hair on the next twist and wraparound until you have done both sides and reached the back. It’s best done after a shower when hair is still slightly damp and you leave it until the hair is dry.  This is the best way to achieve strong curls.

 

Rainbow Fun

What do you enjoy most about showers?  For me, it’s all about the smell.  Yes, even when it comes to food, smell is so important.  Can you imagine not being able to smell?

I know someone who can’t. He has a condition called anosmia. It’s the inability to smell.  So when he was little he didn’t like to eat a lot of things because he couldn’t smell anything, let alone taste them!

At the beginning of this week, I got a Lush Delivery and one of the goodies was the Rainbow Fun Bar. Never mind that it’s colourful.  It smells SOOO GOOD.  It’s ridiculous.  If it wasn’t a piece of soap I would’ve eaten it already.

I let my kids use some and they loved it! The whole bathroom and upstairs smells so fruity and fresh.

In fact, the smell reminds me so much of Fruit Stripes gum.  I grew up eating this as a kid.  We’d look forward to the tattoo after opening each stick of gum.  The smell took me back to my childhood.

Lush Delivery

Before we had kids, we used to partake in marketing research sessions.  It’s s great way to earn extra cash and try new products.  Sometimes, you get stuff for free.  With three kids, its a little more difficult to get out and participate.  But back in December last year, I got lucky can received a call for an online marketing research.  I was excited.

All I needed to do was answer a series of questions online – three days worth.  There must’ve been at least 30 questions altogether.  It was about beauty products.  After a while, it was hard out figure out what the question was really trying to ask.  I made it through the end though.

As it turned out, the client was LUSH.  The compensation was either $85 cash or $125 in LUSH gift card.  I took the latter.  There was some mix up and I never received the email at the right time – it was 3 weeks late.   Nevertheless, I received an e-gift card for $125.  I placed the order last Friday and received the goodies today.  I’m so excited about the Rainbow bath product.  It smells SOOO YUMMY.  Even W took a bite out of the end – it smells better than it tastes!

This is my next favourite item and I just had to put it on W.  Doesn’t she look adorable?