Monday, January 31, 2011

Of Pizza, Electronics and Crazy Ladies

Today was an indoor day with the boys.  I planned on taking them to an indoor playground but we were having so much fun just hanging out at home in our pj's that 7 am turned quickly to 11 am.  John left at about 4 am to head out of town for the week. After a pretty rough night with both boys waking numerous times during the night I was exhausted.  But the morning quickly comes and so does another pot of coffee.

The best thing about the day after parties is all the leftover pizza, cake and chips.....mmmmmm.  Pizza for breakfast.  So good!  I grab a piece of pizza from the fridge, grab my massive cup of coffee from the counter and sit down at the table with the boys.  Adrian looks at me and giggles "Pizza?  Mumma that's silly!"  Says the boy munching on carrots for his breakfast.  You know, I figured out a long time ago, whatever he wants for breakfast unless it's chocolate cake (which he did try to go for this morning) he can have.  Most of the time it's waffles, raisin bread or cheerios but occasionally he'll throw in some beans for breakfast.  Today it was carrots...with ranch dressing.  Meh.

After breakfast we head down to the family room as per our usual morning routine.  Cartoons are on and the boys are pretty much doing anything but watching tv.  Adrian has stripped the couch of the cushions and is jumping onto them from the couch, being, you guessed it, a superhero.  Finley has quickly caught on and is climbing onto the couch by way of a pile of blankets only to drop back onto them from the couch.

Finley loves anything electronic, he especially loves pressing that's probably what happened when all of a sudden there's picture but no sound on the t.v.....crisis!!!  This ALWAYS happens when John's away.  So, I get on my blackberry and anxiously start texting John;

"There is a serious emergency here"

"No sound on the tv"

In the meanwhile we head back upstairs and Adrian continues to play superheroes while I try to get Finley to draw with the crayon...not eat it....restlessly awaiting John's reply.

Don't judge me.  I don't use tv as a babysitter by any means.....but sometimes I secretly wish Fin actually liked tv a little more - he really has no interest in it unless it's 4 Squares (all you parents! Sing it with me now "Hep, hep, heppity, hop!") I hope that song slithers into your brain and torments you as much as it does me some days.

Anyway, back to no sound on the tv.  John figured it out as he always does.  I married him not only for his looks but his brain works great too.  ;)

The day progresses.  And quite pleasantly I might add.  Minimal tears, lots of playing between the boys, good naps (including my much needed own), cartoon time, snacks and more playing (superheroes again) and then it's dinner!  Mmmmmm...nothing like some more leftover pizza, but this time with a side of cheesy pasta.  I did throw in some carrots and broccoli, hoping upon hope that they would make their way down the boys esophaguses.  Which, for the most part, they did.  Well, that I can't be totally sure of.  We do have a dog that likes to linger around the dinner table....although she's not much of a vegetable lover.  I'll give my babies the benefit of the doubt this time.

Bed time comes and there were some struggles as there are every night but my ultimate goal was to ensure that they were in bed and sleeping by 8 that I could watch....

The Bachelor.

Wow, that Michelle girl is really, really crazy.

Spiders, Snakes and Superheroes...OH MY!

Today I had a 12 foot Albino Burmese Python in my house.  And a Blue Tongue Skink, an Alligator, a Tortoise, a Bearded Dragon,  a Crested Gecko and a Tarantula...ironically named Rosie.  I shiver when I think of that Tarantula....something about an insect as big as my hand with fur and way too many legs makes my heart fill with an irrational fear.  But give me a 60 pound snake that is more than twice my size and I'll wrap that baby around me and love every minute of it!

Have I got your attention now?!  Well, I'll fill you of the greatest things about being a parent is throwing really cool birthday parties for your kids while simultaneously getting to relive your childhood.  So, I decided for Adrian's 3rd birthday party I would hire the Travelling Reptile Show to come to my house and give everyone a little show and tell on these amazing creatures.  Now, the reaction that I got from my Mum and Mother-In-Law was a subtle but very clear message....that I must be a little bit out of my mind letting poisonous, rabid animals with sharp teeth and an instinct to kill, in my house.  But I've always loved reptiles and never had any sort of real fear of them.  (Spiders, however, totally different story and after today it seems that my son has the same minor arachnophobia issue)
I have fond memories of going to Turtle Pond in London as a kid and bringing home garter snakes and newts and keeping them in a card board box in my back yard - hell would have to freeze over for my Mum to let me step foot in her house with such creep crawlies.  And in a sick way I actually got a kick out of scaring my friends with these creatures....I chased a girlfriend down the street with a (very small) snake wrapped around my finger once...Jen, if you're reading sincerest regrets.  Long overdue, I know, and I hope I didn't scar you for life.

So after the really awesome reptile show was over, my son (aka "Batman" - he was dressed in his Hallowe'en he is every other day of the week and I must say he does the best Batman impression  "I'm Batman" low whisper and all.  Kills me!) was beside himself about having his "Cool, Superhero Cake".  Let me tell you, this cake/work of art was the coolest!  My neighbour friend, Csilla, has an amazing talent of making truly one of a kind cakes.  This one had a chocolate Spiderman coming out of the top, Gotham City with the Batman logo on the side and Iron Man cupcakes around it to boot!  My son was in Superhero heaven!

Now, I'm no clean freak (although my best friend Erin would adamantly disagree) but I do have one stern rule in my house.  No (children) eating anywhere other than the kitchen table...okay the occasional dish of raisins, piece of non-messy fruit or bagel (with no cream cheese of-course) will make it's way down to the family room but 99% of the time food is eaten in the kitchen, at the table.  So, needless to say having 7 children high on sugar running around my house, cupcake in hand (with RED icing) put me into a minor state of panic.  I'm still finding reddish pink smears on towels and walls but I'm over it.  No really, I am.

On the party went, kids running up the stairs, down the stairs, up the stairs, down the stairs.....up the stairs.....down the stairs.  In the interim of the children being downstairs (while the Dad's watched "the game" why is it always "the game" no explanation needed?  It's like man code or something...) the Mom's got to enjoy a glass of wine and some adult conversation.  Until the children came stompeeding back up the stairs...and my friend Kristin loudly states "Children are to play downstairs!!" To which most of them actually listened. I love her.

Shortly after the pizza was ordered and eaten the party trickled down and out.....

My amazing husband cleaned up EVERYTHING.  He's good for that.  Mind you he probably felt bad that he was leaving in the middle of the night to a work conference in Kansas for the week but in any case, he's pretty great.

After the boys were bathed and Finley was put to bed, John sat with Adrian in his giant bean bag chair and read him about 20 books.  Just before he crawled into bed, I came in to lie down with him as requested.  As always requested.  "Mumma, lay down?"  Utterly adorable. So I lay down with him and asked him what his favourite part of the day was.   The answer was so sweet and made me so proud.  It wasn't about the reptile show that cost a million dollars or the presents that he got from us.....he said
"Eating my cake....eating my cake with Lukey sitting beside me".

I guess we've taught him something worthwhile in his very short 3 years of life.

Delicious Food + Good Friends = Great Days

What a guy!!!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Dora and Diego vs Spider Man!!!

Today is "Paint with Dora and Diego" day at a ceramics shop with my friend Kristin and her daughter Erynn!!!  I'm looking forward to it as it'll be quality time spent with my big boy which rarely happens these days.

So we arrive and are settled in at a kid sized paint splotched table.  The very friendly gentleman working there comes over and explains that we're painting a frog on a lily pad attached to a hollowed cone sized thing that you can fill with water and stick in your plants....perfect for me because I'm the plant killer in my house.  He brings us a paint tray with the colours blue, red, green and yellow.  Great!  I ask Adrian what colour he would like to paint the belly of the!  Of-course!  What colour would you like to paint his back?!  Of-course!  Makes total sense to me and as Kristin cleverly points out they are Spider Man colours.  The guy brings over some well used paint brushes and Adrian picks out a brush, dips it generously in the red paint and off he goes!  Of-course, I'm a proud Mummy and think it's just the most beautiful frog ever....until the lady that works there comes over and looks at Erynn's very well designed and perfectly painted frog and says "Wow, nice colours!  Great job!" then casts a side long glance at Adrian's frog (more like toad - sooo many colours blended together make such a beautiful shade of brown) and pretends she didn't really see, therefore, no comment needs to be made.  Well!  She clearly doesn't see that he has a God given natural artistic talent.

Dora and Diego arrive!!!  Pandemonium ensues!!!  Only because 85% of the children there are terrified, mine included.  I tell Adrian to go give Diego a high five and he gets very subdued, a quiet fear in his big blue eyes.  "No Mumma".  "Oh come on!  You love Dora and Diego!  They want to say hi to you!"  He walks a little closer, still about 100 feet away.  Dora and Diego are being attacked by the paparazzi of parents and their terrified children.  Nope.  Not going to happen, not even a shake of the hand.  I shrug.  Oh well.  He wanders over to the little sitting area and I find him engrossed in a Spider Man comic book....hmmmm.  He brings it over to me and climbs onto my lap.  "Can you read me this Mumma?"  So there I sit at a Paint with Dora and Diego event reading a Spider Man comic book to my 3 year old boy.

Might there be something wrong with this picture?

Friday, January 28, 2011


For most folks Friday's are great, the week-end is coming, you get to hang out with your friends, family, drink wine, relax.  And I'm not saying my Friday's are bad, they're absolutely not, HOWEVER, after having my oldest son in pre-school every Wednesday and Thursday and being a Mother of one (which, let's be honest, is soooo much easier than two - not to take anything away from first time Mommy's whatsoever because, regardless, it's all hard work, but just see for yourself...go on....have another)  for two days....Fridays can be...a bit jarring.  Especially when you have a 3 year old who has the energy of a Jack Russell Terrier on speed.  Please, don't get me wrong, I love him more than life itself, he amazes me everyday and I think he's the most beautiful thing ever but, well, that's the honest to goodness truth.

Our morning starts off like every other, except a bit earlier than I would like - o-dark thirty - but because I had a great night's sleep (miracles DO happen) I flung the sheets open ready to start the day.

Down the stairs we go to have some "waffles with syryop" (no, that's not a spelling error, that is how he pronounces syrup - see-ree-op)  A minute later my sleepy husband appears.  "Go back to bed honey, you were up early yesterday".  Awww.  What a nice guy.

A bit of hesitation from me....the  "martyr mommy" side of me starts to poke her annoying little voice out and I hear myself say "No, no, I'm up.  It's okay"  And then the "logical mommy" side starts in on her and says "Seriously??!!  Your husband is going to be away 95% of February - TAKE IT WHILE YOU CAN!"  So I quickly say to husband, "Actually, I will go back to bed".

But to sleep I did not go!  I tried and tried.  Tossed and turned, squeezing my eyes shut to no avail.

So, I flipped through my newest In Style magazine for a half hour, then decided it was time for a shower.   I actually had an uninterrupted shower and hold it.....

....hold iiitt...

I.  Put.  Make-up. On.  Oh yes, I did.  So thank you, sweet husband of mine.  It was a good Friday far.....


It was just after 8 am, we were hanging out in the family room playing and watching some cartoons when I gave my "Okay guys, 5 more minutes of cartoons and then we're going upstairs to play".  Adrian says to me "I want to go outside!"

I pause.

Outside.  Where it's cold.

And snowy.

Very cold.

Very, very snowy.

I clap my hands together to muster up some enthusiasm "Okay! Let's get dressed and go outside!"

After getting both of them dressed in their snowsuits....which is a lot like herding a hundred cats....and after which I'm sweating like a pig but have yet to put on my own snow attire, we head outside.

Where it's cold.

And snowy.

Very cold.

Very, very snowy.

What do I do now - I have one child that wants to run and another that can walk but not particularly well in a bulky snow suit.

I grab the toboggan thinking it would be a great idea to take them for a ride around the block.  Exercise for me.  Fun for them.  Win, win.  Always good.  I pile them onto the sled and off we go!

For about 1.5 seconds.

Until I look back and both of them are on their sides, flopped onto the snow.  Whoops.  Well, looks like I need a toboggan that actually has sides to hold them in.

As I lean down to swoop Finley up and dust the snow off of him I say "Adrian, why don't you grab your yellow shovel and shovel the driveway for Daddy?"  Off he goes, grabs the shovel and plays with it for about 2.5 minutes.  He then starts to grab chunks of snow and throw them at the tree in our front yard.

Whatever works.

That lasted for about 2 more minutes.

"Look, honey!  Cole and Luke are outside!"  At this point, I'm carrying around my not so little, little one, because every time his boot clad foot hits the snow he starts to whimper.  Off Adrian goes to his older buddies 2 doors down.  He laughs as they draw naked men on the tree with snow (laughing only because they were laughing.  He had no clue what was going on - and drawing a naked man on a tree with snow really doesn't look like anything other than, well, snow on a tree).

Their mom who is entirely clueless about her now pornographic tree, makes her third trip out to the van, buckles them in and off they go to school.

Alright. What now?

We go back to our front yard and Adrian starts cleaning off the car with his mitten clad hands.  My back is starting to kill from carrying around my 25 lb "baby".

Oh look!  There's another neighbor!  We chat and she invites Adrian over to play at her house later on in the day. Then, off she goes to work.

I look around and think, what next???!!!!

Hockey!  We all love hockey! (we are Canadian after all)

Okay, we have a hockey stick for Adrian and me.  I just needed a mini stick for Fin and a ball.  Nowhere in the garage could I find a ball...out comes the trusted crackberry.

Yes, I texted my husband, who was working from home (in the basement) to bring out a ball.  But he couldn't.  He was on a conference call.

I hate when his work interferes with my day.

I hear Adrian's voice, all excited "Mommy!  My Hallowe'en candy!!"

Uh oh.  Oh no.  Here we go.

"I want some candy, can I pleeease have some candy Mumma?"  We had hidden his bag of Hallowe'en candy in John's tool chest shortly after Hallowe'en..."hidden" being the key word here.  Obviously not hidden enough.

"No, sweetie. You know we don't eat candy in the morning."  He hauls off and hits me in the leg.  Well! That makes the next decision easy.  Off we go, full on tantrum and all.  Inside and up the stairs for his (too short) 3 minute time out.

The time out is over, an apology is given and accepted.  I proceed to put away about 10 loads of laundry while trying to keep Finley from climbing everything and Adrian from jumping off of everything.


I look at the clock.

An hour has passed.

It's 10 am.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

When the morning comes too fast....

Last night was a typical night in the Soden household.  Finley woke up crying at 1 am as he has about 10 teeth popping through and Adrian awoken by Finley started crying "Mumma!  Muuuummmmaaa!" from his bed.  So there I went from one son to the next.....and eventually back to bed.

It was still dark when I hear at the side of my bed (always, ALWAYS my side of-course) "Mumma...I'm hungry" This usually means he wants 2 bites of his breakfast and then swooshing, jumping and flying around like Iron Man commences.  I look at the clock blurrily....6:01 am....really....REALLY?  Nope this is not happening. So I start to reason with Adrian "Honey, it's too early, it's the middle of the night.  Look, it's dark - everyone is still sleeping on the street".  Waaahhhhhhhaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!  Oh God.  Please no.  "Honey, why don't you come up and cuddle in Mommy and Daddy's bed where it's nice and cozy and I'll get you some juice".  Wow, that was easy.  Up he climbs (we have a really tall bed) and he says "Can I have some mango juice with no water in it?"  He's long ago figured out that we water down his juice, so I have to secretly dilute it when he's not looking.

Back in bed he finishes his (watered down  ;) ) juice and lays nice and quietly beside me....HA!....I wish.  He tosses, turns and eventually climbs on me and tries to cuddle on my chest/belly like he did when he was half his size.  Awwww.  Now this is what's so great about being a Mummy.  Nothing compares to the feeling of your baby's warm body cuddled into yours.  We lay cuddling for about an hour until I hear the sweet, adorable babbles coming from the crib of my other baby.  And so another day in January dawns....

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

I am a Blogger??!!

So, this something I never thought I would say...I'm a blogger.  The idea came to me while my husband was travelling for work earlier this month.  I am a full time mother/slave of 2 boys (thanks for that Sarah - good one) and I was tired of being tired and a little restless after the boys were in bed, the dishes were done and the toys were put away.  There's crap on TV (except I do watch the Bachelor as my guilty pleasure - Michelle's totally crazy) I have a running commentary in my head at all times as I'm sure many people do plus  I have always loved writing and am hoping that doing this will ignite the passion I had again.

As I'm writing this my 1 year old is babbling, crying, screaming, then babbling maniacally once again when he's SUPPOSED to be napping but has yet to rest his sweet blue eyes.  How cute and annoying all at the same time.  But I will continue to blog as I believe sleep will descend upon him very soon....sleep Gods do you here me???!!!

Here we go....the reason I named my blog  the Dawning of January is for a few reasons and it's also of-course a play on words derived from my name.  And yes, my birthday is in January but I digress.  First of all I'm starting my blog in January which can be a very dreary month and what with having two little ones and it being winter and all, the days can be long and sometimes a little bit tortuous....for those that don't have children imagine cooping up a small animal in an even smaller box and eventually it will either climb or start bouncing off the walls (well, I scientifically don't really KNOW that but you get the picture) in my case, my not quite 3 year old does both.  However come everyday in January there is a Dawn (as there is in every day of EVERY month HOWEVER please bear with me) the dawn brings with it a new day, new adventures, new memories to cherish...if you want to think positively about life which I choose to.  So that is how it came about.  And, reading back on this I'm not even sure it makes any sense but this is my blog so I'm sure only 2 people are reading it anyway and they happen to be my Mum and my husband...although I'm not even sure about the latter.  You see, when I told him (that would be my husband, John) that I was starting a blog he looked at me with a glint of something or some things in his eyes.  Was it humour?  Was it doubt?  Perhaps a bit of fear because I might blog something not so savoury about him?  Maybe all 3?   Honey, don't worry, I won't blog anything that you wouldn't approve of....but you won't know unless you read it right?