About, Parenting

Conversations with the Kids

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Mr. 3: My poop is flat!

Me: I wonder how that happened?

Mr. 3: Maybe there aren’t enough nutrients?

Me: Maybe… how do we get more nutrients?

Mr. 3: Yogurt? Yeah! I REALLY want some yogurt!


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Me: Twinkle twinkle little start…

Mr. 1: NOOO!

Me: Abcdef…

Mr. 1: NOOOOO!

Me: The stars at night, are big and bright!

Mr. 1: NOOO!

Me: Do you want me to stop singing?

Mr. 1: No!

Me: Do you like saying no?

Mr. 1: No?

Me: Do you like saying yes?

Mr. 1: *nods head emphatically*


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Me: Happy 11 week birthday!

Fetus: …

Me: We are supposed to start feeling better now!

Fetus: …

Me: Alright! Let’s have a good day! Go Team!

Fetus: …

 

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About, Parenting

First Trimester Tips

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(I don’t know what that second circle is, but the doctor assured me I’m only have one baby. Thank goodness!)

The first three months of pregnancy are probably the most difficult to get through. When asked, I describe myself as “miserable”. The truth is, though, that I could be feeling a lot worse! I have to remember that I am not throwing up, and I can still eat most foods as long as they are fresh. (For some reason, leftovers make me really queasy.)

Here are some tips that I have found to ease my suffering. Hopefully they work for you, too!

  1. Sea Bands – These armbands work great for motion sickness, AND they work for morning sickness too. I used these on all the cruises I’ve been on (especially when pregnant/breast feeding and unable to take Dramamine). I have gone from laying on the couch and bemoaning my misery to being able to play on the floor with the kids again. At least part of the time. It honestly does make a difference, even if it’s just in my head.
  2. Eat frequent, small, and healthy(ish) snacks. Use those few moments you feel okay to slice an apple, cucumber, or similar fruit to have ready. That way as soon as you start feeling icky you can eat a few slices and feel better. I never let me stomach get empty because that is when I feel most like vomiting.
  3. I keep a breakfast bar and bottle of water by the bed so I can have a bite before I get up in the morning.
  4. Take naps whenever you can. Insist on having some “mommy” time, even if it’s just for a quick nap. Your body is going through a lot of changes right now and exhaustion is guaranteed.
  5. Leave the house! I’m starting to realize that if you lay on the couch moaning all day, you will never feel better because all you think about is how sick you feel. But if you go out to the park or museum and are chasing two kids running in opposite directions, you have no time to feel sorry for yourself. Later you will realize that you actually felt okay. Just don’t forget to bring snacks.

Are there any tips that worked well for you? 

 

 

About

August

The month is almost over! It seems to me that the older we get the faster time seems to go by. You also get a speed boost for each child you have. When I had only 1 child it felt like I had a handle on the passage of time, but with two children I sometimes wake up and realize the month is over already.

The 3-Year-Old

He hasn’t worn a diaper since the beginning of the month, and I am trying to learn to trust him and not nag him so much about “Do you need to pee? Do you need to poo?” I know it is frustrating to him to be asked these questions constantly, but he does still forget to take care of himself sometimes. Still, I am so relieved he has finally made the leap and is mostly accident free, even at night.

He is obsessed with Blippi the TV show. In fact he spent nearly 2 hours watching Blippi on the Kindle today.

I did not let him watch TV until he was nearly two years old, but his brother (who is 1) will follow him around and watch the show with him for as long as it is playing. I’m torn between enforcing limits for the two and letting him learn his limits on his own.

I try to think back to when I was young and single and lived in my own apartment. I watched a lot more TV but I usually only watched it while “studying” or doing homework. I also played a lot of video games. Yes, he is 3, but part of me thinks he should still get to play the games he wants to play.

I had him pause the video and told him how watching too much television wasn’t good for his brain or his body. That he needed to play games and run around so his brain can form new connections, so that he can learn new things, and so that his muscles and bones will stay strong and healthy. Then I took his brother for a nap.

20 minutes later he came into the room and laid down with me. It turns out the Kindle ran out of battery. I told him that made me happy and I reminded him why watching too much television wasn’t good for us. Then he asked me to read 9 books (always 1 more!) and fell asleep pretty quickly after the read-a-thon.

The 1-Year-Old

Mr. 1 has started doing board puzzles.

My favorite is Melissa and Doug Farm Wooden Chunky Puzzle, and his favorite is Melissa & Doug Vehicle Sound Puzzle.

He still has a little trouble turning some of the bigger pieces when they have the little peg, because he insists on using the peg, but he has shown great improvement over the last week.

He is also becoming more independent and wants to do everything himself. Unfortunately, he is also easily frustrated and spends a lot of the time shrieking when something goes wrong. He is trying, and he knows how to ask for help, so I try to be patient and let him learn.

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It is still early. In fact, I was supposed to get my period today. Instead I have:

  • Nausea and gas
  • Fatigue
  • Fuller, more sensitive breasts
  • Frequent trips to the bathroom
  • Constant thirst and increased hunger

I don’t know if it’s related, but sometimes my spit turns to glue in my mouth. It’s pretty weird.

Mr. 3 keeps asking if I’ve been to the hospital yet, and I have to explain that it will take a while for the baby to be fully grown. Mr. 1 has no idea what’s happening.

I hope you all had a satisfying month!

About, Parenting

Teach Your Own – John Holt – Chapter 2

I am reading another John Holt book, so I have a lot I want to talk about. This book is Teach Your Own, the how and why of homeschooling. John Holt originally wrote this book in the 60’s, but the book has been updated in 2003 by Pat Feranga.

Chapter two addresses the common homeschooling questions of, “how will my children learn enough”, “how do I teach my kids for x number of hours a day,”. More importantly it provides some background and studies on what it takes to be a good teacher, and to be successful at homeschooling.

Continue reading “Teach Your Own – John Holt – Chapter 2”

About, Parenting

10 Minutes / Big Boy Bed

We’ve been having some bed time struggles with the 3-year-old. I think it has to do with the baby regression that was mentioned in a previous post, where my 3-year-old acts like a baby in order to get more attention. At nap time he has been asking me to lay down with him, and it has gotten to the point where he is unlikely to nap if I don’t lay down. Alternatively, if I do lay down and say something along the lines of, “Mommy is tired, I am going to lay down. Will you join me?” he usually (not always) jumps at the opportunity.

And yet at night, he would cry every time mommy and daddy would back out of the room and close the door. He shares a room with baby brother, but it is not the same.

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Yesterday he told me he wanted to lay down with someone who “has a mouth” and “can talk”. This was specified after he rejected laying down with his stuffed animals, and he also rejected laying down with our dog.

Well, astute parents that we are, we decided to get him a full size bed to replace his open crib so that one of us can lay down with him at night until he gets settled and calm. 5/7 nights last week he has gone to bed with a minimum to no fuss. He cried once when I left because he was having trouble settling down due to a large fly in the room.

This has also been an opportunity to witness the cuteness that is baby brother (15 months old) and his love for Little Blue Truck. He will roll around with that book and rub it on his face. He will sit and read it and point at all the pictures. It is a wonderful thing to cuddle with Mr. 3 and watch Mr. 1 settle down in his crib. Usually I stay for 10 minutes and then try to excuse myself, but it is a happy 10 minutes. 10 minutes that makes me feel more connected and close to my children. 10 minutes away from the demands of a messy house, phone full of emails, and everything else.

10 minutes just to love my children.

(Before bed we brush teeth, read 1-2 books, and sing 1-2 songs. Then we lay down and try to sleep.)

What do you do for bedtime?

About

Father’s Day

As late as it is, I wanted to take the time to say it. Happy Father’s Day to all the father’s out there that do their best each and every day to take care of their children.

These little people look up to you so much!


We are lucky to have such a great father in this house. My husband is calm, patient, funny, hardworking, and so good with the little ones.

Whenever I get frazzled, he is quick to offer advice that makes me feel silly for never having realized.

I complained once about not being able to sweep the kitchen because the boys kept taking my broom and dust pan to sweep the ceiling, or refrigerator, or carpet. He just said, “what’s the hurry?”. And he’s right, there wasn’t any hurry. 

He’s always thoughtful and puts his family first. And we love him. 

Happy Father’s Day!

About

Mother’s Day 2017

I’m having a wonderful day today, and I hope that you are too! My day has been full of happy surprises.I got to sleep in all the way to 8 am, and when I came out of the bedroom there was breakfast on the table and a hot cup of tea. Then, my husband took Mr. 3 to the grocery store while the baby was napping and I had a whole hour to myself to read and play with my new Kindle 8HD. But that’s not all, folks! They came home with beautiful flowers. Later the baby took his first few independent steps while playing basketball!  I’m so happy I could burst! Thank you!

About

Traveling for work… ick

I don’t know exactly how to describe the way I am feeling. I don’t know if I’m tired, sad that the sun has gone away again, PMS, perhaps even that 3rd child we’ve been trying for… but I feel … I feel bad.

My husband has been out of town for work this week, and he comes back tonight. Yay! I thought I was doing really well but today it’s catching up to me.

I was going to make a post earlier this week about how a can-do attitude can change everything, but now I think it takes more than that!

It’s so lonely being away from family and not having anyone to help out. I know it was only 4 days, and the kids are happy and healthy, but it’s been hard!

I have the utmost respect for those people who’s significant others travel a lot and I am very grateful that mine does not. Although maybe it gets easier with practice? 

All in all though, the kids have been great. Thanks to the sunny weather we spent a significant amount of time on the patio playing sandbox, or restaurant. We did some art, we read some stories. We played with trains and trucks. We walked the dog 3 times and saw a nearby construction site. 


Still, I told my husband for Mother’s Day I want to stay in bed all day!

(By the way, those Play dough creatures and tape collage projects are all inspired by Rachelle Doorley at Tinkerlab. )

About, Daily Lessons

What do you want your children to learn?

“I’ve been to day-school too,” said Alice; “you needn’t be so proud as all that.”

“With extras?” asked the Mock Turtle a little anxiously.

“Yes,” said Alice, “we learned French and music.”

“And washing?” said the Mock Turtle.

“Certainly not!” said Alice indignantly.

“Ah! Then yours wasn’t a really good school,” said the Mock Turtle…

Have you thought about what you want your children to get out of school? What qualifies as a good education for you?

This is a really hard question but I’ve been thinking about it and I came up with a little list. I am sure it will change as my children get older, but it’s a foundation to build on.

  1. Reading and Writing – I want them to be able to read and write at a level that will allow them to do well in a business environment.
  2. Mathematics – I want them to do all the basic math we do daily without a calculator (calculating tips, fractions, multiplication, division, addition, subtraction , basic algebra).
  3. Science – I want them to have a basic understanding of the different branches and how they fit together to make the world work.
  4. History – I want them to understand how our history affects us today, how to learn from our mistakes, and how to protect our futures.

More importantly, I want them to

  1. understand how to take care of themselves. Eat healthy, be safe, take care of their house and belongings.
  2. be good people who help those in need and are always respectful of everyone regardless of color, age, sex, or anything that may make someone different.
  3. know how to find answers to the questions they have. I want them to know where to learn more about the things they are interested in or may need to further themselves in school or work or life.
  4. how to spend/save/give money wisely.

The more I think about this, the longer the list gets, but I am confident they will learn everything that they need to learn and much more besides. I feel that the best place for them to learn all of these things is out in the real world, interacting with ordinary people, and seeing how things work first hand.

What do you want your children to learn?