Monday, March 29, 2010

The nasty reality of a baby with a cold

Mom Central Canada has a campaign on right now for hydraSense. I'm participating in the campaign and received a few of the hydraSense products. If you haven't seen the commercials, hydraSense is a nasal care system for babies. I don't have a baby right now but I will in a short 8 weeks or so. And I've already had two babies, one of which was diagnosed by my doctor as having tiny nasal passages. Not words you really want to hear when you are desperately seeking sleep.

Emily had snot issues from almost the day she was born. It wasn't even just when she had a cold.... it seemed to be constant for the first few months. We were always using an aspirator on her. We even tried a few different types until settling on what we thought was the most effective. I remember the worst part being the different nasal hydrating sprays. The one the pharamacist recommended seemed to have the power to do a lobotomy. Needless to say, Emily did not like it. It only took me four months to realize that the clothes she was constantly wearing were lent to us by friends who had cats. I removed those clothes and sheets and the nose problems cleared up substantially.

She still caught colds though and we still suffered through tiny nasal passages.

It was Emily that remarked the other day when seeing the packages of Hydrasense I received that they contain "the science of the ocean." We don't even have a t.v. and somehow the power of advertising has reached her.

After going through the package, I do wish I had these products when Emily was a baby. I really like the Easy Dose Vials of Hydrating Nasal Care. They are little tiny tubes filled with a solution that you gently put into the baby's nose to keep it hydrated. That would have helped us quite a bit I think. There is also an aspirator and filters for it. It is much more involved that the squeeze type I used and I'll be trying it out on this new baby when the first cold (or tiny nasal passages) come along. You can see a demonstration of it here.

Being pregnant I am suffering from serious nasal congestion so I decided to try out the Ultra Gentle Mist Hydrating Nasal Care for myself. Essentially, it's a nasal spray. I figured that if it was safe for babies, it was safe for a pregnant woman. It wasn't the mind-blowing stuff I unleashed on Emily as a baby... thank goodness. It truly is gentle and it did clear my nose sufficiently over night. I have since turned to the adult stuff however since it didn't quite have the power I needed but I'm sure it will be great for a baby.

If you're interested in trying this for your own baby (and if you're suffering through a baby with a cold, I know you're desperately looking for a few hours of sleep right now), you can sign up for the Dolphins Club and download their coupon at Once logged back into your account, enter the code MC2010 under the online coupons tab and get an $8 coupon toward the purchase of the nasal aspirator.

Here's to clear noses all around!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Pregnancy Update: Hello, third trimester

It kind of surprised me, this third trimester. I had to check my little pregnancy ticker at the side of the blog to be sure what week I'm at - I'm in my 31st week! That means I'm officially in my third trimester (and have been for about 3 weeks, turns out). I'm feeling surprisingly good this week. The last few weeks have been an ongoing battle between heartburn, indigestion and sore hips with uncomfortable sleep thrown in for good measure. This week, the heartburn is almost non-existent as is the indigestion. I've had two good night's sleep in a row. I have no idea why but I'm enjoying it while it lasts. I think the reintroduction of coffee is the key.

One thing that has seriously helped me through this pregnancy (and my pregnancy with Hope) is ongoing chiropractic care. Right now I'm seeing my local chiropractor every week, which I think is a bit excessive but after my labour with Emily I am so focussed on proper positioning of the baby that I do what she tells me (it worked when I was pregnant with Hope).

I've had a few comments from people lately like this: Wow, I bet you're anxious for this baby to come out now! (And then when I mention my due date of June 1, a look of shock comes over their face.) I actually thought I would be bigger at this point, given this is my third baby but I seem to be just right for my body type and comfort level. Not that I care that a few people think I look big. I really like how I look when I'm pregnant and since this will be the last time, I'm enjoying seeing and touching my round belly. Here I am in all my glory:

The baby enjoys flipping... a lot. During the day I can still feel it do an occasional flip... nothing to worry about yet, although for the most part it is head down (much more comfortable than someone stomping on your cervix, let me tell you).

I'm in pseudo-training, not just for labour (although I know that my body knows how to do that so I don't really "train" for it), but for our trip to New York City (!) in mid-April. There will be a lot of walking - at the girl's pace of course - and my feet have to be ready. Right now, that continues to be my biggest complaint; I get really sore heels from the extra weight if I'm standing for very long. So, each day I'm trying to do a long walk. This afternoon I hope to do one after my massage (mmm, massage).

I've been woefully neglectful of blogging about the pregnancy. I had just started my blog when I was pregnant with Hope and it gave me much-needed subject matter. This time, with two other kids in the mix, it is a bit of a second thought. Until a few weeks ago I even had thoughts of "oh yeah, I'm pregnant" about once a day. That's not a problem anymore since this little babe enjoys kicking me in the ribs often. Hopefully now that we're in the third trimester around here, I'll make sure to do a bit of documentation more frequently. Otherwise this kid is already doomed to be the forgotten third child.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

March Break review

I have to admit that blogging during March Break really got away from me. I had plans to blog while we were at John's mom's but by evening, and with a real t.v. with real satellite in the vicinity, I got sucked back into my favourite daily show, Coronation Street. Blogging was pushed off the agenda.

However, I made sure my camera was fairly busy every day so that when we did get back home I could give you a review of our week.

I loved our March Break again this year! On Monday, we went to St. Catharines and dropped John off at his mom's; the girls and I headed to Ridgeville to spend the night at my Aunt Sharon and Uncle Dave's house. We had a nice supper together, the girls explored their house and then I watched t.v. and chatted all evening.

On Tuesday, the girls and I eased into the day by running around a bit on my Aunt's property and the girls sat on the tractors in the barn and we marvelled at the size of Uncle Dave's sunflowers from last year.

From there we headed to my Aunt's hair salon for some much-needed haircuts for the girls. After the haircuts, I took the girls up to the Lazy Loon for lunch; it's the restaurant inside a big store called The Log Cabin where my mum used to have a store called Classic Collections. Hers was a ladies' clothing store that sold only Canadian-made clothing. After lunch we toured around inside The Log Cabin which is so different from when my mum had her store in there.

From there we headed to the house I grew up in on Haist Rd in Fonthill. We sat outside the house and I pointed out my old bedroom windows and noticed that the blinds my mum put up years ago are still hanging in the living room windows. A reason to buy quality window coverings, right there! After that, we went to my old public school just up the street, A.K. Wigg, and the girls played in the playground.

They were pretty worn out after that so we went back to Aunt Sharon and Uncle Dave's, packed up our things and then went to St. Catharines that was our homebase for the rest of the week.

On Wednesday we went back to Ridgeville to spend the day with my high school best friend, Julie and her family: Mathieu, Olivia and Felix. We all had an amazing time. Mathieu, chef-extraordinaire, made an amazing lunch of Tunisian soup and bread. The rest of the day we were outside on the farm talking, still eating and drinking, and the kids jumped on the trampoline until about 5:00. Emily also had the thrill of riding in the back of a pick-up to check on the tapped trees. There were also new-born puppies, rabbits and of course cats. The weather was amazing and some of the kids ended up in t-shirts and shorts.

On Thursday morning we had another playdate. We went to Niagara-on-the-Lake to spend lunch and the afternoon at my friend Marnie's parents-in-law's house. We roasted hot dogs at the fire pit and then the kids played, played, played - mostly on another trampoline. It seems it was the week of trampolines.

On Friday, John joined us for an afternoon in Niagara Falls being tourists in our own backyard. We walked and sat and took photos and actually paid to do the Journey Under the Falls which I remember as a kid as being way more thrilling that it was this time.

Finally, on Saturday morning, the kids played with Omi who returned from her visit to Ottawa on Friday night while John and I packed up to head back to Waterloo that afternoon.

Needless to say, I spent most of yesterday afternoon chilling out from our sort-of-staycation. It was a great week though and I'm so happy that I took the time to show the kids all the places I spent time when I was a kid/teenager. I hope the memories stay with them for a while.

Monday, March 15, 2010

March Break plans

March Break has sadly started off with a whimper. I had huge plans for us this morning. HUGE! Namely, meeting the infamous Fairy Blogmother for a morning playdate with our kids and her and I fawning over each other face-to-face. It was not to be after Emily woke up at 5:30 this morning coughing and sneezing and being all awake and stuff. In fact, she woke me from deep sleeps THREE TIMES between 5:30 and 6:30. I would have been a trooper and pulled through as I was that excited to meet Shannon in person however better thoughts prevailed (namely, Abby's). Abby smartly suggested that we postpone so that no one else is sick over March Break. Smart kid, that one.

So, I'm taking a slightly leisurely morning while my kids divine ways to commit siblingicide. I started off with replacing my broken mug with a couple of new beauties from my favourite Waterloo potter, Stephen Hawes.

Next I sat around reading the paper and thinking about how I should be packing for our week away. We're spending the week in Niagara (mainly Ridgeville/Fonthill and St. Catharines for you who know Niagara) and next weekend in Gravenhurst. Our itinerary is such:
  • Monday: drive to Niagara; drop John off at his mom's house (his mom is in Ottawa this week); me and the girls go to my Aunt's house in Ridgeville for the night
  • Tuesday: playdate with Julie (best friend from high school) and her kids on the farm - word has it there are new bunnies, kittens and puppies at the farm... a little girl's mecca! Tuesday afternoon - taking the kids on a tour of my hometown, Fonthill, to see the sights. Should take about 10 minutes and then a haircut at my Aunt's hair salon.
  • Wednesday - visit to a local sugar bush and maybe Niagara Falls
  • Thursday - playdate with friends in Niagara-on-the-Lake
  • Friday - drive to Toronto - go up CN Tower; maybe go to Science Centre; continue to Gravenhurst to spend weekend at my dad's (he won't be there - he's in Florida - but we get to use the house and hot tub while he's away)
So, there is some packing to be done obviously. I should really get on that given that I've done absolutely nothing beyond sit at the computer and take a shower.

It's time to make a list.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Goodbye, Lucas

My favourite movie from Grade 10, when I discovered it, to early university when I discovered Princess Bride, was a little feel-good movie called Lucas. It's the story of a Grade 9 boy named Lucas who is picked on; a screaming nerd that becomes friends with the most popular girl in school. He falls in love with her, she falls in love with a football player (Charlie Sheen) and that sets him on a path of almost self-destruction as he tries to prove himself as strong and cool as the rest of the football team. It's a wonderful story of being yourself, of defending the underdog, of accepting people for who they are.

The movie starred Corey Haim as Lucas. I loved, loved, loved Corey Haim. I watched his performance as Lucas on my VHS tape, taped off our local Fox station by a friend (Adam Ingrao) for me, and he became my favourite star of the 1980s.

When the news reported this week that Corey Haim died at the age of 38 (I'll be 38 this May), my memories of him (to me he'll always be Lucas) stayed with me for the week. He had a tragic life but it seemed he had the heart that I suspected - he was taking care of his mother when he died. I also learned he was Canadian.

Lucas was a big part of my teenage years and I'm sorry that Corey Haim's story ended this way but however corny it sounds (and it sounds very corny), he'll stay a part of my growing up and the lessons of Lucas did indeed round out what for me as a typical teenager was the most selfish part of my life.

Thanks, Lucas.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

At a loss for words

I've felt like I've had nothing worthwhile to say since I returned from Texas. I can't think of one substantial or even semi-substantial thing to put in this blank space. I don't think I've ever had that problem with the blog before and I don't know why it is happening now.

I had a good flight home from Austin followed by chicken wings at the Anchor Bar in Buffalo (home of the original Buffalo wing). I had brutal heartburn that night but it was totally worth it. The girls were thrilled to see me that night (Emily was still awake) and the next morning. I'm so happy that I came back home to unseasonably warm weather. It made the transition from Texas-spring so much easier.

I'm going to leave you with a few last photos of my week in Texas and hopefully that will tie up that storyline and allow other ideas to come to me although all this warm weather is keeping me away from the computer for the moment but I hear rain is coming and if I can get my kids off my computer for a while I'll actually get a chance to blog something more substantial. If my brain allows it.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Austin Day 4

Yesterday was another beautiful day. We largely spent the day around the house - playing in the sand box, everyone napping, doing some housework, sitting in the sun, and then Olympic Fever began right when the puck was dropped around 2:15 Texas time. After that it was all Olympics, all the time. That was followed by an amazing steak dinner - ribeye cowboy steak, which means about 3 inches thick - to celebrate and then we watched the weird closing ceremonies. I suppose they aren't proper closing ceremonies if you're not left shaking your head and saying how crappy it was.

This morning while Kate was at preschool, I did some shopping - gifts for the girls etc. It's a rainy day in Austin. Really rainy. No sitting outside for me. I did start making Mulligatawny Soup for supper until I realized there wasn't any curry so now I'm knitting and watching Owen sleep.

I finally uploaded some of my photos from the week. A small selection is below: