Monday, January 23, 2012

Kung Hei Fat Choy

Today is the start of Chinese New Year!!

During this 15-day celebration, homes are adorned in red decorations with popular themes of good fortune, happiness, wealth and longevity. Families also exchange money in red-paper envelopes (hung-bohws), wish peace & happiness to each other and reconcile all grudges.

As you can tell, red is an important colour when celebrating Chinese New Year.

For us, an important tradition is to buy something new and preferably in the colour red.  We are all decked out in red today. I will have to take a picture of our 'red' from today... for now, here are two pictures from last year of all of us in our red!!

Ericka looks so young from almost a year ago

My favourite picture from our iMac photo shoot.. funny faces
Chinese New Year never falls on the same day of the year.. Last year it was celebrated on Thursday Febuary 3rd 2011 (which happened to be on Ericka's birthday) and next year, the New Year falls on Sunday Febuary 10, 2013 and the snake will be recognized as the animal sign of the year!  It's all based on the Chinese Lunar Calendar system which you can read about more here.

Wishing you a Happy Chinese New Year from my family to yours!! Kung Hei Fat Choy!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Ericka's lovey

(I wrote this a month ago as my 'first' blog post... but didn't want to post it yet. Here it is finally.. published and updated!)

A couple of months ago, my daughter became really attached to what we'll call her lovey.
It's not your average teddy bear, doll, 'blankie' or even toy. It's actually a plastic fork. The kind you buy at Ikea.

Back in the summer.. Ericka loved holding on to toys and objects.. such as a mallet or her bubble flute.

But sometime in August or September... she started to really enjoy holding on to the fork we would give to her for meals. From there, it was almost impossible to separate her and the fork


I was mortified as a mom. I kept thinking "what will other parents think of my child holding onto a fork".. no less running around and having fun with a fork in hand!
Family members started to question whether or not it was safe for her to be attached to a fork.. but honestly, in the weeks and months she clenched on to the plastic fork, she never stabbed or hurt herself with it. Yes, there may have been a scratch or two on the face or arms, but nothing serious. And yes, she may or may not have stabbed her parents with the fork... but again, not SERIOUSLY damaging. Just a surprise poke if you will.

It wasn't until we started daycare in October we knew she had to let go of her fork when we took her there. There was no way I was going to admit that was her lovey or that this is what will keep her happy.
So my husband and I would discreetly take it away from her each time we took her to daycare.. which was either twice a week or up to 4 times a week.  The first few weeks of daycare were hard enough on her and us as it was a new setting and new thing for Ericka to understand.

But honestly, since she has warmed up to daycare (actually she LOVES daycare and we love the staff and program there), she hasn't really wanted or asked for her lovey. Meal time she demands a fork but after that.. she's too happy or busy to have her hands occupied with a meaningless fork!

So mama's... have no worries. Ericka doesn't need her fork lovey anymore. Right now, it's a Donald Duck toy figurine she received for Christmas that she loves to hold on tight to)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Baby Bump update - 28 weeks

Happy Monday!!!
I wanted to update on my baby bump. I'm at 28 weeks but I feel like I'm 35 weeks. I can't help but waddle when I walk and groan when I sit. LoL I'm a hot mess!
"Herm" as we called him before we found out the sex of the baby is sitting waaaaay low and right across my belly. Fun times!! He's very active and loves to kick/punch/roll whenever he can. 
Here are a few belly pics. I don't normally show my belly & skin, but hubs captured some photos of Ericka getting intimate with her soon-to-be little brother. She lifted my shirt up and started to grope me. So, I apologize for any appalling photos you see of my belly area. Viewer discretion is advised! ;)

Me and the belly
28 weeks and 4 days

Giving the 'bay-beee' a kiss or two......
Ericka showing off her belly too.
(ps. don't mind the diaper genie lurking in the background) 
She loves touching my baby bump
Family <3

Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Versatile Blogger Award!!

I just received my very first award on blogging!!!!! How exciting!


Thanks so much to Yee Wittle Things for considering me for this award!
I know I'm still VERY new to blogging.. I have so much to learn, so many posts to catch up on.. but this award has given me the motivation to continue blogging and to blog as much as I can! So thank-you very much Brandi, my SIL!!! 
Check out Brandi's blog.. where she talks about marriage, kids and everyday life! One of her kids also has a peanut allergy, so if you can relate... she welcomes you to her blog!

The rules for the Versatile Blogger Award are as follows:

1.  Thank the award giver and link back in a post.
2.  Share 7 things about yourself.
3.  Pass this award along to as many as 15 blogs you enjoy reading and let them know about the award!

Here's 7 things about me!

  1. I am the youngest of a family of 6.. my dad passed away May 2007, so now, it's just my mom, my sister and brothers. I cherish my family and happy that we've all expanded ourselves into our own families.
  2. I love my family.. Norm & Ericka (and #2 on the way) are my everything. I love when we do our usual weekend morning errands and when all of us can spend time together hanging out and having fun!
  3. I met my hubby at work in 2003, but didn't start dating until a couple years later. To this day, we both work there still!
  4. I am a fan of sports.. not because my husband is a sportscaster.. but I really enjoy watching and playing sports (it's probably why hubs and I can get along hehe). I use to play soccer competitively and other recreation sports (baseball, badminton, volleyball, basketball etc). 
  5. My favourite professional teams are the Toronto Maple Leafs, followed by the Toronto Blue Jays.
  6. I love chinese food, especially dim sum
  7. I'm a BIG fan of Apple.. Love my iPad, iMac, iTouch iPod.... currently working on getting an iPhone but a certain contract is keeping that on the backburner. ;)
So now, it's time for me to pass this award onto a max 15 bloggers!
Since I'm new and I'm still learning about the blogging-world.. I'm going to award it to a few people I know have blogs (which isn't many)

Hubby's blog about sports from local, national and international news, covering all types of sports... But be aware, he is a HUGE Leafs fan too!
My best friend Anna is studying in the west coast, and as she does, she's blogging on how we can help make a change in the world.  She is connecting with readers with her mind, emotions and soul!
A great blog from Shantelle sharing ideas and tips as a mommy of 2!
My friend Marita's blog talking about her life as a survivor of cancer!

I also wanted to add Brandi's mom's two blogs.. She's already received the award but I wanted to link her pages here so that others can follow. They're great blogs.. one is about life with two basset hounds, Fred & Gloria called Basset Momma, the other is a a blog about home-made recipes that you can make!! There are some great ideas and tasty treats!! Check out Homeward Bound when you get a chance!

Support these blogs if you get a chance!
(I may add more as I think of others!!)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Cold Turkey

First off, I want to wish you, the reader, a very Happy New Year!  Wishing you and your family the very best this upcoming 2012! (I know this is a few days or so into the New Year, but better late than never!)

The holidays have been pretty busy in our household, hence the lack of blog posts over the past week and a half since my last. I'm trying to better myself in writing posts, but it's pretty hard as I'm into my 3rd trimester and Ericka keeps me on my toes.  None the less.. I've found time to write one!

As the blog title may suggest, this post isn't about eating cold turkey. More about going "cold turkey" on some (bad) habits for Ericka.

The first (as mentioned in a previous blog post):  the transition from crib to toddler bed has been amazing! Better than expected!  She has really embraced the freedom of climbing in and out herself. She reminds me so much of a big girl rather than a toddler!!!
The first few nights she didn't have a stool to help her climb in or out.. so she'd make a big thump. But we gotzzzz smartzzzz and bought her a little stool. She is so cute using it.
Plus, there is NOTHING cuter than her coming into our room in the morning when SHE is ready to come see us. It gives hubby and I more time to lay in bed and rest without the hassle of wondering if she's ready to come out of her crib. BONUS!

Next... since Ericka is getting out of the bed herself.. she had to eventually give up the gro-bag. Yes, those first few nights when she didn't have the stool and we heard the 'thump' after she climbed out of her bed was due to her not having full mobility because of her gro-bag. So, after having the stool and realizing she still wasn't getting out of the bed properly.. we decided it was time for her to use a blanket. The gro-bag was great when she was an infant.  The idea of her suffocating or getting wrapped up in a blanket when she was younger was frightening.. so the gro-bag was perfect in keeping her warm and controlled to cover just her boyd.  But lets face it-- Ericka is almost 2.. she is MORE than ready to be out of a gro-bag.
The first day we didn't put her in it and gave her a blanket, she freeeeaked out. She wanted her gro-bag!  Ericka is the type to want what she knows and doesn't adapt well to new things or ideas. She really lets mommy and daddy 'hear it'!  Giving her a blanket to sleep with was definitely something she didn't want to adjust to, just yet.  It took about 2 days to get her use to the idea. She doesn't love the blanket but doesn't hate it, so that works for me. She'd rather sleep without one than with one so we make sure her room is a decent temperature, and that her 2-piece pajamas are warm and she's wearing socks incase she kicks off her blanket (which she does every night).  So far, so good. There's no turning back on this idea really. We'll eventually have to get her use to sleeping with the blanket that came with her bedding. But for now.. she has something just as warm and comfortable to get use to.

The next big thing we went "cold turkey" on was the soother! We tried to take it away from her after year one after her pediatrician recommended it... but that was just a nightmare. She didn't get  or understand why she couldn't have a soother to help calm her to sleep. She was so use to having it, taking it away from her was traumatizing to her. So, we figured we'd try at the very latest by the time she turned 2. I didn't know how we were going to do it.. Were we going to talk some sense to her and tell her the 'suckie fairies' were taking them away? Were we going to poke hole or cut them so she didn't enjoy sucking on them anymore? Or ask her to give them up and throw them away? Yeeeaaaahhh right that last one was happening.  But I had chilling thoughts of Ericka as a 3 or 4 year old, still sucking on a soother. Not going to let that happen...  So, we just took them away from her.
It's been about 2 weeks since she had her last suck on a soother, and yes, the first couple nights were hard because she had to find a new way to sooth herself to sleep.. but she really hasn't asked for them! It has taken her a touch longer to fall asleep but really, not too much longer? Either hubby or myself have to go into her room to reassure her it's time for bed and time to sleep.  After a couple of visits, she's sleeping.
I think in the long run, taking her soother away now is better than later.. and this will only benefit herself and her teeth! lol

Lastly, potty training!! It's not like we have taught her out of the blue what going on the potty means. We've read books to her and she watches mommy and daddy use the 'big white thing that flushes'.  Before the holidays, she'd point at the toilet and say "pee peeee".. I took it as a hint she's ready to try. I've plopped her on the toilet to see if she would go.. but she would whine and want off. So, on boxing day, we took a trip to Toys R Us and surprised her by letting her pick out her own potty!!!! She loved the idea! We spent about 10 mins letting her look at the different colours and designs, but I think she knew after the first minute which one she was going to pick: the pink princess-y one that makes a cute sound when you 'flush'. You could see the excitement on her face when she was testing it out. So once we got home, we opened it up for her and she sat on the seat, fully clothed, and loved that she had her very own potty.. but that was the first big step to potty training, right?
The next step was getting her to actually GO pee or poop in the potty.  It's still a work in progress but we try everyday. Ericka just enjoys taking the diaper off and sitting on it.. then going through the routine of wiping, flushing, and washing her hand!  It's cute but I'd like to see some pee action by now.
I've tried a few tips I've read on getting her to go pee... such as giving her lots of water to drink and then trying to get her to pee after. Nothing. I even tried to put her back on the adult potty because she has shown interest in sitting on it. Nada. I'm curious if any one else has any other hints or tips on getting a child to actually pee (or poop) on the potty?!?

Wow, such a long blog post but I've been meaning to write about these big milestones (to us at least) for a few days/weeks.  I'm really proud of Ericka's progress transitioning into a 'big girl'  :)

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