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CAMPING

July 28, 2014


After spending a few weekends close to home, we were all going a little stir crazy and were anxious to leave behind the city for a couple days in a tent. We spontaneously booked a site in Tobermory, one of Canada's National Parks, since it was the last one available, but then cancelled the next day when we saw the weather forecast. Then we rebooked when the chance of rain dipped below 60%, because who doesn't love an impromptu trip to the woods in a severe thunderstorm with a baby and a super energetic four year old?

Thankfully the rain held out for the most part and we got to enjoy the little town of Tobermory, including the harbour and two national parks. Kale is definitely in his element while camping. He loves to help out with just about everything - from setting up the tent to splitting wood - and is eager to explore. Bea was her usual relaxed self and was happy to perch herself on my hip and take it all in.


We managed to get the kids in the tent for bed just as the rain started. It poured pretty hard all night, along with thunder and lightening, but the kids slept through it all and we stayed dry thanks to the tarp city that Kris constructed.

Sunday morning was cool and foggy, which is kind of the perfect weather to start the day when you're camping. Of course Kale was bouncing off the tent walls at 5am and there was no containing him at 6am when Bea woke up, so we packed them in the car as a courtesy to our neighbours and headed out on a search for coffee. We took a walk through the harbour and Kale LOVED all the boats, but it was Kris who almost lost his mind over the RCMP Coast Guard boat.


We were hoping to get in a hike, but had to leave our site and didn't realize how quickly day permits sold out. We took our time on the way home and stopped in Sauble Beach to stretch our legs and grab a bite to eat.

Even though it was a bit of a whirlwind and was only one night, Kris and I both agreed that it felt longer (in a good way) and was exactly what our family needed. Even though we do a lot together as a family, there is something about camping that makes that time more meaningful. It's likely because there aren't any distractions or errands to run or toys to mess around with. There's mostly just each other.

CURRENTLY [link up]

July 23, 2014

THE DEAL: 
Use our themes or use your own - just let us know what is 'currently' up with you!
Be sure to stop by and say hello to the other blogger's linking up - especially my lovely co-host Lindsey from Ot & Et.

THIS WEEKS THEMES:
watching, searching, missing, growing, ignoring

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I am currently watching Bea on the monitor. Two days ago she went from sleeping 8 hours without moving, to being a crazy tumbleweed that drifts around her crib, getting limps stuck in her crib bars, and screaming because she's stuck on her belly every two hours. When we're not trying to comfort her back to sleep, we're watching her tumble around on the monitor, hoping she figures out a way to get herself back to sleep (surprise! she doesn't). 

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Kris and I are currently searching realtor.ca. Not because we're looking to buy, but because I have an insatiable desire to peek into other people's homes (a.k.a - I'm nosy). Normally we just look at houses in our area, but the other night we fell into a dark hole of looking at multi-million dollar homes in Toronto and Vancouver. I honestly had no idea that there was even such a thing as an apartment that costs more than ten million. And someone please explain - why would you buy a ten million dollar apartment in downtown Toronto when you can buy an ISLAND in Muskoka for $7 million? 

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We are currently missing pictures of us as a family. Last week we realized that we have about 6 million pictures of the kids, a handful of Kris with the kids, one or two of me with the kids, and uh...none as a family of four? So after dinner on Sunday, while we were hanging out on the deck and the sun was going down, I ran and grabbed my camera, the tripod and did the whole "quick! Everyone together! Smile! SMILE!" We did this about a hundred times and ended up with one good picture (and a reminder that we should be doing this more often). 



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I am currently growing my hair - but only because I haven't been able to get away from Bea long enough to do anything. That's going to change next Tuesday because I finally got around to making myself an appointment. That gives me a little less than a week to decide what I'm going to do with it. Part of me wants to chop a significant amount off, but I've always been a chicken with my hair and will probably go with "the usual." 

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We are currently ignoring the weather forecast and heading north for a spontaneous camping trip this weekend. They're calling for rain and while camping in the rain with a baby and a four year old doesn't sound like much fun, I'm anxious to get up north and enjoy some time near the water before the summer is over (even if it is under an umbrella). 

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next weeks themes: 
needing, listening, learning, jumping, building 


SOCCER

July 21, 2014


We registered Kale for a winter soccer league last year with fairly dismal results. While he seemed to enjoy running around like a wild child, kicking the ball as far as he could, and wearing all the gear, he had zero patience for listening to the coach and wanted nothing to do with the other kids. The first half of soccer was fun, but the second half involved Kale hiding under a bench in tears. For whatever reason, we decided it was important for Kale to stick it out and took him to every game, held him when he cried, but continued to cheer on his team and take him out for ice cream after.

When spring rolled around and it was time to register for the summer, we asked Kale if he wanted to play again, hoping that the fact that it was outdoors and he was a little bit older would make a difference. He seemed excited and was enjoying kicking a ball around in the yard, so we went ahead and signed him up.

It took him awhile to warm up and, well to be totally honest and upfront, quite a bit of bribery - but Kale is now a soccer fanatic. He's still not totally into warming up and doing drills with his teammates (I think because it's actually a bit boring), but tell the kid to get a goal and he's off like a lightening bolt to put it in the net.

Kris tells me that I'm being "such a mom," but I think Kale is actually really, really good. He has amazing ball control and keeps his cool and stays focused on the ball when he's swarmed by other kids. He's not shy about putting an arm up to fend off the other team or about stealing the ball from someone else. Maybe I am being "such a mom," but other parents do always comment about how impressed they are by him.

With that being said, he does have some work to do on sharing the ball with his teammates, although I don't think any of them really understand that they're supposed to pass and work together. I think all they really get is that parents cheer and are really happy when they get a goal and they're just motivated to appease us and get a little boost to their self-esteem.

As much as I'd love for Kale to play for the love of the game (which I think he partly does), I know that he's driven by a competitive spirit and the glory that comes with winning. I read things like Alfie Kohn's "The Case Against Competition," and I worry that we're encouraging all the wrong things (I really need to read the whole book). For now, I'll just settle on the fact that he's four and most of the time they end up playing tag or watching bugs, and I'll just be glad that he's not hiding under a bench in tears.


Beatrix Mae [five months]


Five months! It's hard to believe we're already here, but it's pretty obvious. There are no more lingering signs of the newborn she was such a short time ago. She's all chubby cheeks and belly rolls and bright eyes now. She's become such a little character and has started to let us know that while she's laid back and content, that doesn't mean she's going to sit on the sidelines and watch forever. She's become more interactive and vocal, keen to lock eyes and exchange a smile with just about anyone that passes her by.

In terms of milestones, she's a rolling expert now and sat unassisted for the first time just a day or two before turning 5 months. She seems to recognize her name and responds with the sweetest sounds when you talk to her. She is all about putting everything in her mouth and has definitely starting teething. She's still pretty content to go to just about anyone, but there have been a few instances this month where her preference for me has shone through.

I was so worried about the dreaded four month sleep regression, but it never happened. She continues to be a great nighttime sleeper, consistently sleeping from 8-10 hours, waking to nurse, and then going down for another 2. Her naps are another story, as we've fallen into the trap of the single sleep cycle, meaning she naps for 45 minutes (on the nose) and can't seem to get herself back to sleep. She would wake for two hours, nap for 45 minutes, all day long. It's hard to get things done out of the house in that two hour window and if she falls asleep in the car or stroller, I'm stuck driving or walking since she never seems to transfer well. My plan is to work on extending the naps this month, but really - I can't complain. I'll take short naps and long nighttime sleeps over long naps and frequent nighttime waking any day. 

Breastfeeding continues to go well, although we definitely hit the distracted nursing stage with her twisting and turning and stopping and starting at every little sound.

Her favourite things these days are the cat, the wooden moose stuck to Kale's bedroom door, her sophie teether, the jumperoo, and, of course, Kale.

I can't believe the next update I do will she will half a year!! As much as I feel like her newborn days went too fast, I can't wait to watch her grow and this is such a fun age.

currently [link up]

THE DEAL: 
Use our themes or use your own - just let us know what is 'currently' up with you!
Be sure to stop by and say hello to the other blogger's linking up - especially my lovely co-host Lindsey from Ot & Et.

THIS WEEKS THEMES:
saving, closing, loving, despising, throwing

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Kale is currently saving goals. Only one other kid from his team showed up for their soccer game this week and once that kid found a grasshopper he had little interest in playing. This meant that Kale had to play every position as he took on a team of five. They use two nets on each end of the field for the kids, so Kale ended up sprinting from one net to the other as goalkeeper while everyone cheered him on.  

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Beatrix is currently closing her little fist around any bit of food she can get her hands on. We're waiting until at least 6 months before introducing solids to Bea, but she is pretty anxious to get started. In the past few days she's made some pretty impressive grabs for my food, letting me know that she's just about ready. 

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We are currently loving our weekends. Even though we're feeling exhausted every Sunday night and wondering where the past two days went, we're filling each weekend with lots of family time and exciting adventures. Last weekend involved a soccer game for Kale, followed by a trip downtown for our city's annual "Art on the Street,' a birthday celebration, lunch with new friends, and a World Cup final. 

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I am currently despising the lack of napping that Bea has been doing the past couple of days. While she's always been a chronic cat napper, the last couple of days have been straight up ridiculous. She "naps" (if that's what we want to call it) for 20 minutes, wakes up ready to party and have a good time, and then screams herself to exhaustion for the next hour (and then repeat, repeat, repeat). I'll blame teething (because we need to blame something), but o.m.gee...... send wine. And gin. And earplugs. 

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We are currently throwing in the towel and doing whatever Kale wants. Tonight I was exhausted after a long day with a miserable Bea and Kris was supposed to go to baseball. But when Kale noticed a neighbourhood bike parade to support active transportation, Kale gave us little choice but to throw on his helmet and run like hell to catch up. 

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Next weeks themes: 
watching, searching, missing, growing, ignoring