Liam: 4 Years Old

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Oh man, have I ever been meaning to get this up sooner. I’m a whole month late. Geez. Can you believe my oldest is already 4 years old? Well, I’m sure you can. It’s not exactly magic. I’m in shock though. I swear he was a baby yesterday. Today he made himself a snack, got himself dressed and peed all over the bathroom floor.

It’s been a crazy year. Going from 3 to 4 is really a HUGE change. Kids go from babies to kids, just like that. He talks so much now, and has so many opinions. He sees and hears so much. He takes everything in. He’s so excited to start school in the fall and even started preschool this year in preparation. He looooooves dufferdoo. He’s also doing karate once a week, which is the best. We hang out with his friends as much as we can (as much as our schedule and my anxiety allows). His best friend is Isla, who happens to also be one of his oldest friends. He ADORES his cousins Cassidy, Elliot and Wesley. Watching him with his brother is my greatest joy. He is so protective of Mason. He loves him to pieces, even when it’s hard.

Now, for some stats and an interview:

Around 43.25″ tall (about 3.6 feet), 43lbs

Nicknames: Monkey, kiddo, turd, turdmonkey, buddy, baby, big guy.

Diapers: He uses the potty during the day and wears good nights at night.

Noms: This kid is fussy. This has not changed. We’ve been able to add a few food items to his diet, but not much. Seriously. The only things he will eat are: Peanut butter, cucumber, carrots, cantaloupe, milk chocolate, olives, chicken nuggets, french fries, cold uncooked hot dogs, pepperoni, pizza (sometimes), kraft dinner, bologna, satines, waffles, gold fish, ice cream, apples, bananas, frozen blueberries and strawberry yogurt.

It was pretty awesome reading last year’s post. It’s funny that every year I’m like “Oh god, this is the hardest age”. I will say they all have their awful bits and awesome bits. I love how independent he is now. He’s such a PERSON. He has his own likes, dislikes, reactions, emotions, etc… The hardest part is the sass that comes at 4. Oh man, it was like a switch. Suddenly he’s all backtalk, sass, and potty humour.

  1. How old are you? 4
  2. What is your favourite colour? Red
  3. What is your favourite animal? Dinosaur
  4. What is your favourite book? The Animals Alphabet
  5. What is your favourite show? Sarah and Duck (Mummy would also add Paw Patrol, Teen Titans Go, and Curious George)
  6. What is your favourite movie? Big Hero 6 (aka Hiro Hamada)
  7. What is your favourite song? I don’t know
  8. What is your favourite food? Bananas
  9. What is your favourite snack? cheese
  10. What is your favourite outfit? Shorts and soccor ball shirts
  11. What is your favourite game? (goes to get Rayman Video game), Tag and What time is it Mr. Wolf
  12. What is your favourite toy? Buzz Lightyear
  13. Who is your best friend?  Isla
  14. What is your favourite thing to do? Play with everyone
  15. What is your favourite thing to do outside? Play at the park
  16. What is your favourite holiday? Tuesday and Halloween
  17. What do you want to be when you grow up?  Daddy

Happy Birthday, baby. I love you so much.

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Three

I can’t believe it. My squishy, chubby sassy baby is 3 years old. How did this happen?

Here’s a look back at two and one.

Around 39″ tall (about 3.25 feet), 38lbs

Nicknames: Monkey, kiddo, turd, turdmonkey, buddy, Mimi (Wesley, Liam’s cousin, calls him that)

Diapers: In pull ups and cruisers in 6, but is starting to get the hang of the potty.

Noms: This kid is fussy. Seriously. The only things he will eat are: Peanut butter, milk chocolate, olives, chicken nuggets, french fries, cold uncooked hot dogs, waffles, gold fish, ice cream, apples, bananas, frozen blueberries and strawberry yogurt.

Big Changes: Talking our ear off, having serious opinions and asking questions, starting to potty train, missing people when we aren’t with them, telling us he loves us.

An interview:

  1. How old are you? Surprise!
  2. What is your favourite colour? Blue
  3. What is your favourite animal? Green (when asked again, he said giraffe)
  4. What is your favourite book? I don’t know! Green!
  5. What is your favourite show? Jump jump jump?
  6. What is your favourite movie? Hot Wheels
  7. What is your favourite song? Alphabet Song
  8. What is your favourite food? Peanut butter
  9. What is your favourite snack? FISHIES
  10. What is your favourite outfit? Dress
  11. What is your favourite game? Ball
  12. What is your favourite toy? swords
  13. Who is your best friend?  Gus and Byron
  14. What is your favourite thing to do? Play
  15. What is your favourite thing to do outside? Play on the slide
  16. What is your favourite holiday? Halloween
  17. What do you want to be when you grow up? Taller

Man, this kid. I will tell you, Three is tough so far. Or rather, the end of twos is tough. Suddenly, he is a handful. Two handfuls.  Spirited doesn’t cover it. He Goes and goes and goes and doesn’t stop to listen. He is kind and sweet and hilarious. He is emotional, like me, and stubborn. He tells me every day that he loves me and he wishes me sweet dreams at night. I am so excited to watch him continue to grow, to continue to become who he is.

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Happy birthday, monkey. We love you so much. Thank you for helping me become who I am today <3

31

Today is my birthday. I am 31, and I think this marks the end of the first year where I felt like an Adult. 30 had it’s challenges. There were many ups and downs, a fair number of struggles. I felt my priorities shift and my motivations were very different. It also marks the year that I came out of my PPD fog and started feeling like a person again.

I’m not saying that I’m “Better”. I don’t know if that’s a word that will ever apply to me or my situation. If anything, I think I have learned this year that we all have our own ability to cope. Our own threshold of pain. I know that there are people out there who are living through situations that I couldn’t even fathom and they are doing ok. There are also people who have what could be considered “Normal” lives who suffer every minute of every day. We are all fighting our own battles, and that’s ok. At this moment, on this day, I’m ok.

I know that lately I’ve been worrying some of you, as well as some of my friends. I find that when I open the doors to how I’m feeling I tend to concern people. It doesn’t help that the last few months have been especially trying (spring time always is for me). I do want to take the time to firstly thank those of you who have approached me out of love and concern. It means a lot to me that you are thinking of me and want me to be happy. I do want you to know that I am doing ok. Yes, there are hard days. Who doesn’t have hard days? But over all, I am happy. I have a beautiful family, a fantastic home, a job that I adore, food in our cupboards and our bellies, and clothes on our backs. I also understand that it can be hard for someone to understand that I have a need to express myself (ah, the curse of being a Gemini), and yet, once the feelings are made words, I often feel incredible relief. I have been through so much in the last 15 years. What we are facing now is difficult, but it doesn’t even compare to my worst days. When things are bad, we have support. Thank you for all of your love and concern. I truly appreciate it.

Last week my friends stole me away and spoiled me silly with a girls night out. I drank a lot and laughed even more. I tried my first deep fried pickle. It was amazing. Today, my little posse of mums and kids went out to the children’s museum and had a blast while the kids ran circles around a big empty space (the actual children’s museum was PACKED, so we hung out near the bistro and relaxed). I got to wear Liam in the Tula, I was hug-tackled by the toddlers and I made one of the babies laugh. It was perfect. Tomorrow we are having a birthday dinner for me and then on Saturday, one of my favourite people are moving to this neck of the woods. It’s been a wonderful time.

I feel so much love around me. I have found the most amazing people and have created the most wonderful family. Happy Birthday to me. <3

Me and S, enjoying my kidnapping

Me and S, enjoying my kidnapping

Me and my ladies, at the pub.

Me and my ladies, at the pub.

Two

I can’t believe it’s already time for me to write this post. Two years ago, at 5:04am, my whole world was born.

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He was stubborn. He didn’t want to leave his comfy home. It was 31 hours of labour, 17 of which was intense active back labour, and 5 hours of pushing. Finally, my big boy was born via escape hatch at 9lbs1oz.

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Two years. How is this possible?

Two

32.5lbs, 38.2″ tall.

  • Diaper Size: Pampers Cruisers 6
  • Clothing Size: 3T, squeezing into some of the bigger 2T stuff
  • Nicknames: Monkey, Baby, Little Man, Stinker, Turd.
  • Teeth: All of them, though the molars are still coming through (they keep poking out, and then receding, the jerks)
  • Had a long hard winter, including several bad colds, and a few trips to CHEO
  • Loves to dance, jump, run and spin
  • Is finally starting to talk. He doesn’t use sentences very often, but that’s ok.
  • Still loves antagonizing the animals.
  • We hang out with his best buds Gus and Wesley about once a week.
  • Very picky about his food! Chicken nuggets, bananas and french fries are his favourites
  • Is still nursing frequently
  • Loves making art. Painting is his favourite, though he loves using window markers on the patio doors too
  • Can’t get enough fresh air. Stomping in puddles is the best.
  • Is a young chef in training – Loves to help me cook.
  • Is finally starting to sleep better.
  • Loves giving kisses and hugs.
  • Loves watching kids movies, so long as they are animated and have talking animals.
  • Bubbles make him happier than anything else in the world
  • Terrible Twos in full force.

I can’t believe how grown up Liam seems these days. He has such a wonderful personality. He feels so strongly and loves spending time with us and his friends. He is such a little dude now! It’s a joy to see him interact with his friends and have them run off and play independently (He and Gus playing “nap time” is truly the cutest thing ever). He is incredibly polite and will often sign please and say thank you without prompting. He finally called Pat “Daddy” and me “Ma” (until recently, we were both Ma). He loves drumming and making music. He sings, he speaks to the animals, and he loves it when we have a busy day ahead. He’s down to one nap in the afternoon (usually b/w 11-1).

I have never been more in love, or felt more pride than I do for my monkey. I am thankful that I am able to stay home with him during the day and be a part of his growth and learning. Love you, little man. You are our everything.

Happy Birthday to me!

It has been an incredibly busy weekend chez Heather. This weekend I turned 28, and despite plans to take it easy, ended up having a three day birthday extravaganza!

Friday, my co-workers showered me with song, praise and gifts, which prepped me for the beginning of the weekend. That evening, Pat and I cleaned and got the “real world stuff” done before I could be swept up into the festivities.

Saturday, I woke up early so as to attend that last of Charles de Lint’s annual book and yard sales. We ended up snagging a soft guitar case and a whole wack of books. (A wack, btw, is more than several, but less than a ton). Had a great time wandering other near by sales too, and just barely managed to drag ourselves away in time for me to meet up with S at my place. She and I ran off to pick up ze travelling L at the train station. We then had an amazing day of shopping, eating (namely at my favourite pub, Patty’s), catching up and movie watching (Bridesmaids. Go see it. Right now). We got L back to her hotel, hung out for a bit and then went home.

Sunday I woke up to my lovely husband making me breakfast <3 <3 This was followed by a trip to the movie theater to see X-Men First Class (liked it a lot) and then back downtown to pick up L for dinner at Jean Albert’s (which was AMAZING). We then went on a hunt for wine, but ended up back at L’s hotel room empty handed until Isaac arrived with a bottle of red to save the day! We hung out for a while until it was late, and then the boys fled and me and L started our sleepover.

Today has been mainly errands and catching up on housework and my journal entries. Overall, one of the best birthdays I’ve ever had. I feel so blessed to have these amazing people in my life! <3  And now, because this has mainly been a “Woo, my birthday was awesome!” kind of post, here are my journal entries to spice things up:

Journal Prompt 7:  Write a love letter to someone special!  This letter can be to anyone.  Share your love with someone today and let them know that you care :

This was written to a dear family friend, Mila. She was our live-in Nanny from the time that I was about 3 months old until I was about 8. She is family to me, and one of the people that I hold most dear.

Journal Prompt 8:  Time Capsule!  If you were to make a time capsule today, that wouldn’t be opened for at least another 100 years, what would you put in it??  You can be as outlandish with this as you want because it’s pretend.  What are some things that make you, you!

Journal Prompt 9:  Completely fill your page with something random.  Leave your pen in your desk today and find beauty in the every day random things around you.  

This to be completed! I want to do this one at work!

Journal Prompt 10:  Illustrate your all time favorite song :)  

Journal Prompt 11:  What is your heart full of?  What are the things that are consuming your heart these days.  This could be things that are hurting your heart, breaking your heart, or making your heart so full of love.

Journal Prompt 12:  Completely fill your page with line design!  Line design and geometrics have complete consumed my inspiration boards for awhile now.  The simple, yet complex designs are so aesthetically pleasing for me.  Have fun trying out line design, patterns, and geometric shapes on your page today.

Journal Prompt 13:  Create a simple family tree.  Do this in a way that works best for you.  You can write names, doodle portraits, place actual photos, whatever!! It’s up to you :)  Use this prompt to document your family; as small or as large as it may be!!

June has been kicking my butt

Man, this month has been brutal so far, and it’s only the 8th!

Last week on Friday, I left work early for a doctor’s appointment. I was super excited, as I’ve been trying to find a new doctor closer to home for a couple of years now. One had opened up in the walk in clinic I normally go to, so I was thrilled to be meeting with her. On the way to the bus stop, I had a misguided construction worker decide to flirt with me by “saving me” from a bus that he sent to hit me. Yep. He grabbed me out of the way once he realized what was going on, and took advantage of the moment to put his arms around me. Awwwwkward. Grumbled at him and then fled to catch my bus. Turns out the route changed, so I barely made it on time to my appointment. Unfortunately, once there, I very quickly realized that she was NOT the doctor for me.

She argued with me about my cancer risks, told me that depression can ONLY be treated with specific medications and that therapy doesn’t actually work. Also, I was told that while I am not too obese (?!), I’m not currently a risk for diabetes. Oh, and the kicker: When talking about TTC (that’s Trying to Conceive for those of you not familiar with the lingo) tips, her response was: Have sex every other day and remember not to use a condom. Also, when she asked me if I was taking folic acid, I told her I was taking a popular prenatal multivitamin. She then responded with this nugget of wisdom: prenatal vitamins are crap and that if I continue to take them instead of straight up folic acid, my baby will be deformed.

Yeah, not going back.

I bused home and was heart broken to discover our A/C was broken. Yes, it was a good start to my weekend. Add to that the following: Injured husband = Heather does all the yard work and house work, serious estate drama which may result in the estate being dragged out an extra year, husband potentially having rheumatoid arthritis in his right hand according to his chiro, 5lbs gained by me (making the grand total a lovely 20lbs since my wedding), stressful party planning, and my dead father’s birthday.

This week hasn’t been much easier so far. The temperatures are insane right now. We are as warm as New Orleans today. NEW ORLEANS. Let me illustrate the crazy for you:

Yeah. Something about that isn’t right. So, it’s crazy effing hot all week, there’s 5lbs more of me to be sweaty and grumpy and we don’t have A/C. I’ll tell you what we do have though: A sweltering townhouse, full of angry furry hot animals, with new and awesome water damage in the basement, potentially caused by the broken A/C. Yaaaaaay!!

So, on top of this tender piece of greatness, estate stuff has been bad and my ability to take crap is at an all time low.

Courtesy of pinterest, my new obsession.

Nice lead up to my birthday, which is this weekend, right? All I want for birthday is for the powers that be to stop shitting on me and my family. Yesterday, Pat and I protested the world and decided “Fuck everything, let’s eat meatloaf and watch the end of Supernatural season 5”. So we did. And it was good.

And on that note, let’s pretend it’s Tuesday!

A peek at the past week (how I’ve been): See above

I am thinking… About the estate, our lives and money. Big big stuff.

I am thankful for… the weekend I have coming up. I need friend time, badly. And booze. I think booze will help too.

From the kitchen… Nothing terribly interesting lately, though I’ve spied a few recipes on pinterest that I want to try. Namely Margarita cupcakes. Yummmmm.

I am wearing… No fancy under things. I’m in a brown summer dress to fight off the heat

I am creating… journal entries for the 30 day journal challenge.

I am going… to clean as soon as it’s cool enough to, and then enjoy the hell out of this weekend.

I am reading…  Game of Thrones. Almost done! Loook this book so far.

I am hoping… for some peace. I feel so overwhelmed by life right now.

I am hearing… The Weepies. Thanks to Tracy, they have entered my iphone music rotation

Around the house…HOOOOOOOOOT and damage and work to do. I hate it.

One of my favorite things…painting my nails. Took a couple hours last night and did both my fingers and my toes. My toes are a lovely dark purple and my nails are a purply grey. 

A few plans for the rest of the week: Tonight, Thursday and Friday: Cleaning and estate stuff. Saturday: Leelee arrives and I have girlie birthday celebrations with her and S! This shall include hanging out downtown, seeing Bridesmaids and going out for dinner/drinks. Sunday is unplanned so far, but will include dinner with the hubby, and potentially L if she doesn’t have other plans.

Here is picture! Yay!

Sangria, my true love <3

So, I lied

I’m sorry that I keep saying I’ll post and then not. I’m a big fat liar.

Yesterday was a busy day for me! We had an off-site meeting on Monday, so yesterday was spent catching up. After work, I had to rush home, take care of the critters and get myself ready. Once Pat got home we were out to Beer and Wings night with is work peeps (which was a blast. The conversations with those people are always amazing. Apparently, they have decided to get me completely shit-faced one of these days. Better do that soon folks, because I want to start baking a baby!). After that, I had to run to a near by mall for my ring cleaning (part of our insurance for my engagement ring, had to be done in May. I sure know how to cut it close) and then to the local shoppers drug mart for a stamps to get the baby shower invites out before Ze Big Postal Strike of 2011.

I feel like life has been super busy the last few months. I woke up this morning and it was JUNE. How did that happen? Where did May go? Well, now that I’ve got a moment to sit down and write this out, this is the post I promised.

It’s going to be a big couple of months for me. The weekend of the 11th is my birthday weekend and my close friends are in town to celebrate (namely, S, L and my guy, Isaac). The girls and I are planning on doing dinner and catching The Bridesmaids (which I hear is amazing) and at some point, I want to hit up a restaurant I’ve been meaning to try for years called Jean Albert’s.

I know it doesn’t look like much, but it’s supposed to be some of the best southern style comfort food in Ottawa. I think it’s the perfect idea for my birthday dinner with the hubby.

The weekend of the 25th is our anniversary weekend and we have booked a room at the lovely B&B at 142 Rideau.

One of the rooms @ 142 Rideau

We’re planning on having dinner at Gad’s Hill (A Dicken’s themed restaurant in the heart of Merrickville, and literally across the street from where I was married) and maybe going to see a movie during the day (our very first date was to go see Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Movie dates have long been an anniversary tradition for us).

A few days later, on June 30th, is the closing date on my Mum’s house. I am so completely torn about this. I mean, on one hand I’m obviously thrilled to be moving on with my life and to have this major obstacle out of the way as we complete the estate. I’m hoping, that if all goes well *knock on wood* We’ll be completely done by the fall.  On the other hand, I am completely heart broken to be losing the only place I’ve ever really known as home. I grew up in that house, and returned there whenever a roommate or apartment didn’t work out. It was my safe place, and the hub of the entire Sutherland family.  I always planned on having my children run through those halls and play in the basement, like I did. My brothers brought their first born children to that house, calling it home. Every single one of childhood and young adulthood firsts (past the baby stuff, I was 4 when we moved in) happened in that house. Every single holiday was spent in that house, with the exception of Christmas when I was 12 (the one and only time we went anywhere for Christmas, and it was never repeated).  Every single one of my birthdays too.  It’s hard to let go of all of that. I could close my eyes this very second and walk up to my room from the front door without stumbling or making a sound.

It will be the closing of a chapter, not only for the estate, but in my grieving process. My father died in that house. The last time my mother laughed was in that house. I will no longer have to go to the house, which is a huge physical reminder, ever again. In fact, I won’t have any reason to go to the area at all. We have no friends or family in that part of town any more.

A few days after that, I am helping to host and organize S’s baby shower at S’s mother’s house. I’m really nervous about it, as it’s my first baby shower, and S has extremely good taste and throws the best parties I’ve ever attended. Standards are high here people!

The following weekend is my oldest friend’s wedding, which is going to be an incredible affair. She is a stationary and wedding invitation designer (and graphic designer) with incredible taste. The wedding is set to be in the rooftop terrace of the NAC. Going to be amazing!

The very next day, Pat and I are hoping to attend Bluesfest for one of my favourite bands, A Perfect Circle, as well as the Dropkick Murphy’s. The weekend after that, Pat and I are attending his work wife’s birthday cottage weekend. S’s baby is also due in mid-July.

Yeah, that’s a lot. There’s maybe a weekend or two in there where we don’t currently have plans.  I plan to do some baby knitting in there, and I’ve also decided to participate in the 30 Day Journalling Challenge.

I’ve got a fuckton of art supplies, sitting at home not getting any use. It’s about time I start using them. I also think it’ll help maintain my sanity during this time of grief, babies, music, family/estate drama, parties and birthdays. So, sometime tonight I hope to post my first page. I’m going to try to post them on the same day that we receive the prompt and write/create, but I may end up a day off. We shall see.

So, that’s the post folks! I’ll be back later with journal entries.

 

Settling in

It’s funny how now that I’m working, I find I have more time to post regularly.  It’s been so strange lately, working a full time job again, while getting the last bit of wedding stuff done, while working on estate stuff and getting the house clean. 

 Most of the wedding stuff is going well. Just a few things here and there that need to be done. Namely, meeting with vendors and getting forgotten supplies. Pat and I managed to win a huge discount on getting our wedding filmed. WOO! The company is First Kiss Films, and they are amazing! Go team!  So, we should get a really pretty mini-film of the wedding. Exciting, right?

 

Bridget from FKF

We’ve booked Mum’s burial. I’m a bit nervous about it. I know I’m in this weird place where I want to find this feeling of closure, but at the same time I’m terrified of accepting Mum’s death and moving on. I’m especially concerned about the sale of the house. Even with her gone, we’re still there a lot and it’s still a home to me. T’s going to be such a loss for that to be gone.  It deserves a new family full of love. It was such a great house for us. It deserves better than what we can offer it.

Me, in front of the Orleans house on my 17th birthday

Work is strange, but still great. I think everyone else seems to think that someone else is giving me work, and so I spend most of the day begging for things to do or familiarizing myself with the filing system. For the first time in a long time, or perhaps even ever, I feel happy with where I’m working. There’s no great fight with myself in the morning to come in. Sure, I still get nervous, but it’s not that deep dread I’m used to with work. It’s a really great relief. Today I spent three hours with my supervisor and had a great time of it. We chatted and really seemed to get along. Funny how when you need something, the universe provides.  :)

 I’ve been wondering recently what I’m going to do with myself after the wedding to pass my time and to fill my mind with. I’ve been thinking about getting back into yoga and maybe taking a few online paganism courses. Ellen Dugan has a few, and I’ve heard about some others too. Unfortunately, money is still going to be tight, even with the new job, as we just discovered we have a leak of some sort in the basement. We have to have someone come in and look at it soon and then, after all of that work, we’ll have to repaint. Again. UGH.  On top of that, I need to get myself a car by July, because that’s when we turn in Mum’s van. It’s an hour and a half to bus to work, versus the 20 minutes to drive. A no brainer for sure. I may have found one that could be the winner. It’s a fully loaded 2000 Jetta sedan that has had a lot of work put into it, and only two previous drivers. I’m really excited about owning my own vehicle. This will be the first time I’ve ever purchased a car. Milestone time!

The car I'm lusting after

Meanwhile, it’s my birthday on Saturday and people keep asking me what I want. It’s strange, but for the first year ever, I honestly don’t know. There’s no book series I’m dying for, no movies I need to own. The only thing I’m dying to get is a new phone. I’ve been catching up on the iPhone 4G news all day. It looks amazing. WANT.

iPhone <3

Unfortunately, living in Canada, they aren’t going to be available until July sometime L I hope pre-orders start soon, because I want one as soon as they become available. It’s incredible to believe that I’ll be 27 by this time next week. Where does the time go? I remember my 17th birthday like it was only a couple of years ago, rather than a decade.

 So, with that I should get back to work. I encourage you to go check out this post at Walking the Hedge. It’s a great post and definitely gets you thinking about fate, luck and personal responsibility.