Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Baby Update

Wow, I can't believe how quickly this pregnancy is flying by. I'm now 24 weeks pregnant, which means that in 3 weeks I'll be in my third trimester! How did that happen?

I had a prenatal this morning. The kids came with me, and played the whole time. Graedon had to stay close to me, which he doesn't think is fair, but he can't be trusted around anything of the "no-touching" nature. Luckily, plastic animals and match box cars kept him busy for most of the time!

I'd been measuring a couple weeks behind for my due date, but it looks like baby might be catching up. I'm now measuring just 1 week behind. I have a feeling this baby won't be ready until late August, but only time will tell. Everything else looks healthy, and the only complaints I have are normal pregnancy aches and pains. I was advised to cut back on starches, eat more whole grains, veggies, vitamins C & E (until the last month) and get some mild exercise.

Baby is a feisty little thing. Every time the scope was placed on my belly to get heart tones, baby would kick it away! Rich says that's a sure sign the baby is another boy....we'll have to see about that! Either way, it looks like our child will be named plain old "Baby". We aren't anywhere near to finding a suitable name for this one. Any suggestions?

The Green Family

Here's an article on large families that made me smile this morning. Though we're not Catholic the article still applied since we do try to live "green" where we can - being a large family is a great way to do that.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Alcohol and Breastfeeding

I found this at the Burlington Coat Factory. I admit, I laughed so hard, and then kind of went "hmmm..." and couldn't resist taking a picture.

The writing is a little hard to read, but this box contains 3 strips designed to test for alcohol in your breast milk. I think it sold for about $7.00 USD.

I can understand why some women would want to be extra cautious after a night of partying it up, but rather than rely on a test strip, a bit of common sense might do just as well.

Here's a link to some good info on breastfeeding and drinking alcohol. Basically, an occasional drink isn't a big deal. Alcohol transfers to the baby in amounts equal to what's in your bloodstream. If your alcohol level is at the legal limit of .08, then baby is basically drinking a cooler.

My biggest worry about breastfeeding and drinking alcohol is knowing what you, as a mom, can handle. Some women (and men) see nothing wrong with binge drinking, and drink for the purpose of getting a buzz. Some get a thrill from the "smashed" feeling, and drink with that goal in mind. For the love of your baby, be careful! If you have to care for an infant, you need your wits about you. Just as you wouldn't put your baby in the care of a drunk babysitter, don't be the caretaker if you are not "all there". If you come home in a questionable condition, splurge and keep the sitter overnight. Don't take chances. Although the baby might not get very much alcohol from your breastmilk, it will not be safe if your judgement is impaired, you can't walk straight (let alone carry it) or if you pass out.

Monday, April 19, 2010

To Make a Dinosaur Egg

Eva recently did a project on dinosaurs. She presented it in front of the homeschool group (over 60 people!). I thought it'd be fun to make a dinosaur egg to show everyone. Here's how we did it:

First we mixed up a papier maché paste. All it is is flour and enough water to make it the consistency of wallpaper paste (or a thick glue).

Other than that, we used a mold (a balloon the size of a dino egg (I hope?)), and newspaper torn into strips. Also, don't forget an apron. It's messy.

We dipped the newspaper into the paste, removed the excess icky stuff and neatly placed the strips over the balloon until it was entirely covered. Then, we let it dry completely.

When it was dry, we popped the balloon and painted the egg. Actually, that's what we should have done. What we really did was get impatient and pop it too soon. Then we realized that we needed another coat of newspaper because the egg was a bit flimsy. If you try to do that without the mold, it gets the dry parts wet and they cave in and you get a bumpy egg. Oops.

Here's the finished project, bumps and alls!

The Breakfast Project

I'd like to be an expert on something. I don't care what, I just want to have something that I am really, really good at doing. There are lots of things that I'm good at, but no one area at which I excel. So, a while ago, I put on my thinking cap , turned it on (if you were my kids, you'd press your nose and say, "Beep beep!") and I decided: Breakfast!

I LOVE breakfast. More importantly, breakfast loves me. If I skip breakfast, the whole day is shot. So, since I have to eat, and I love to eat, and breakfast makes me happy, it was a pretty easy decision.

I'm going to try different recipes, and perfect the art of breakfast food in my home. Here's my first breakfast experiment (and I won't catalogue them all...just the awesome or awful ones):

Crepes. So good, so versatile, so breakfast! I stuffed these with fresh strawberries that I had cut up, sprinkled with sugar and left overnight to "juice". I also spread strawberry jam on the crepe because I was afraid the berries would be too sour. Add a bit of whip cream, chocolate sauce and YUM! Next time, though, the batter needs to be more liquid. The crepes were a mite thick.

Orange juice always looks better in a wine glass - especially with a slice of orange.

Graedon gave it two thumbs up!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Face of Birth

This looks like a very interesting documentary about choices in childbirth. New Brunswick is gearing up for legislation, for which many women are ecstatic. Sadly, it's a double-edged sword. If we look at the example of Nova Scotia, which recently became legislated, we see that although midwives are a bit more accepted and midwifery care is publicly funded, there are also problems that need to be ironed out: midwives must be hired by the province, which means an extreme shortage of midwives, they are only available in certain hospitals, and you must live within an hour or so of the centre, any "high-risk" mothers are not accepted, midwives must follow certain policies and guidelines that restrict care and are put in place for malpractice reasons rather than health reasons, are under rule of OBGYNS (again, who are under the rule of a board made up of business men and insurance companies, not health authorities), etc. Likewise in Quebec, though they've made wonderful steps forward, are still seeing a huge shortage of midwives. Only about 1 in 4 women who want midwives are able to have one. Hiring a direct-entry midwife is not an option as they are not allowed to work, nor are midwives allowed to work privately (generally, every province and country have different rules).

Though legislation is an interesting concept and will help with the financial burden of homebirth, it is not the haven for which women are hoping.

Friday, April 9, 2010


All education has gaps. Sometimes it's math, sometimes it's science, and sometimes it's vocabulary. No matter how great your child's education and teachers, there are bound to be things they don't learn. I found such a gap in Eva's knowledge today, and it's all my fault. Observe:

The kids were at each other, kicking, crying, pouting and generally being brats. Being the mom, I put on my stern face, raised my stern voice and demanded that they pick up the toys they'd thrown at each other. I then told them to: "Just sit on the couch and CHILL!!"

Eva, throwing her head back and shrieking in sheer desperation: "I don't even know what that MEANS!!"

I'd neglected to teach my kids the very important word of "chill". For shame.

Diapering a Patterson

I finally got my order of cloth diapers yesterday. I've never used cloth before, but I did a quick mental calculation and had I used them for all three kids, we might have been able to take a really awesome vacation by now! Or, if you want to be practical *sigh* we'd probably have much less left to pay on our mortgage.

I washed them up, and excitedly showed them to Richard. I couldn't find any dolls to model for me, and Tigger wasn't interested in helping, so I just folded them in different ways on the couch. I don't think Richard is too convinced about using cloth. I showed him the Bikini Twist fold, the Newborn fold, the Girl fold, and the Boy fold. The Boy fold is when you fold down the front of the diaper so that the front is double layered and the back is single layered (because boys pee in front, right?).

Richard, frowning, said, "You're seriously going to leave just one layer in the back? You know what happens from our kids' behinds, right?"

He may have a point. :)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

My, but I feel like an adventure.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Get Ready for Summer Day

We've had some unusually nice weather this week. The temperature rose to 22 degrees! It was wonderful, and we took full advantage of it.

The girls discovered some new friends under some old planks on the lawn. It wasn't long before they had a half dozen slow swirlies scooped into a jar. Wondering what they are?

Here's a closer look - snails! Tiny, cute snails. Then, they discovered a slug and that was the end of that. Slugs, even though they are really only shell-less snails, are not at all the cute critters snails are. Slugs are gross. So we found a new adventure.

I put the kiddos to work at planting seeds for the garden. I've been wanting to start from seed for a while, but always missed the "deadline". I think I may have started early enough this year. They had a blast scooping dirt, poking holes, counting seeds and watering them.

Even Graedon helped. Here's hoping for some tomatoes, cucumbers, oregano, chives, basil, marjoram and parsley.

Coming soon to a post near you, Maddie and Eva's Plant Journal!