I’m baaaacckkkk

Yup, I am back. It has been a year and a half since the last time I posted. Yikes!

I can honestly say, I have written oodles of posts and taken a hard drive full of pictures…but for some reason they never quite made it here.

So I am trying again…stay tuned!

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Designer Parenting!?

So…what is with the labels these days?

Slow Parenting.

Attachment Parenting.

Responsive Parenting.

Nuturant Parenting.

I have NO IDEA why people have to label themselves.  As parents, it divides us. It feels like we have to take sides.

It also seems to be a problem when someone labels themselves as one type of parent and then discovers that a particular part of their chosen philosophy does not work for their child or family. It can be such a struggle.  I have seen people go against their gut in a parenting decision because it didn’t line up with the philosophy that they have adopted.

For me, parenting is like making a quilt. My “philosophy” or “principals” is an ever growing and changing thing. I am always adding bits and pieces.  Sometimes I accidentally come across something that I want to add. Sometimes I realize that there is a hole that has to be filled and I have to seek out the right thing to fill that gap. Sometime I have to get out the seam ripper and take out a piece because, although it looked pretty in the beginning, it just doen’t work in the overall design.

Every child is different and every family is different, so shouldn’t everyone’s quilt be different? It doesn’t mean that we can’t share fabric. Quite the contrary – that is the best part about making a quilt – sharing bits and pieces and getting to see how the other creatively fits it into their work of art.

The other shoe…

So I have been away for a while. I didn’t really expect anyone to notice.  Often, when people abandon their blog it is for complex/ not so nice reasons or because they have lost interest. This is not the case for me.

Everything is great and I have missed blogging. Almost every day I think about writing a post but then I get busy and…well…you know how it goes.

I found a great job that I love and it is part-time (2 days a week). I have been getting requests for contract work, so much so that I am putting together business cards and a little website.  I have been taking lots of pictures and getting lots of compliments and have even had people ask me if I do it professionally (ha!).

Life is good and I am wondering about that other shoe…is it going to drop? Isn’t it awful that I can’t accept good things without expecting something bad to follow?

Anyway – I am trying to keep positive…which isn’t hard since things are ticking along so nicely.

Hopefully now that I am into my new routine (for the past 6 weeks I have been at work full time or out of town) I can put some quality time into my blog and the other things that I enjoy.

I love this stuff…

I wish I had bought it much sooner. I was actually at the checkout of a local consignment shop quite a while back when I first picked it up. The cashier quietly told me it didn`t work and I shouldn`t waste my money. So, I put it back. A few weeks ago I was at that same consignment shop and only needed to spend anouther few dollars to use up the money on my account, so I decided to give it a try anyway.

Wow. Love it!

I use it primarily on greasy stains, but it has not let me down on anything else either. It is super easy to use. Just wet the stick and rub it on the stain.

I have since bought several more and keep one in every bathroom and at the laundry room tub. Don`t you just love it when something works the way it is supposed to??

Expectations

I am loving this show lately. Everyday after Mister J goes down for a nap I sit down to have my lunch and watch.  Now, I realize that “Reality TV” is not always reality, but I think this show has a good message.  It is pretty amazing what a week of discipline and work can do for a child. It is also pretty scary what years of indifference can do for a child.

Is “indifference” to harsh of a term to use for parents who consistently don’t discipline, allow children to be disrespectful and set no boundaries? Nope. I really don’t think so.

I realized that Miss K can do more around the house, even though she is 3. She can put her clothes in the hamper, make her bed and help set the table.  It was a bit of a struggle at first – “why mommy?” – “I do it next year” (according to Miss K next year refers to any time in the future). However, after a few short days she is enjoying helping out and feels needed.

I never fully understood before the impact “chores” have on a child. Even for a small child, it is a self-esteem boost to contribute to a household. I also never realized the impact it has on the parent. Even the small amount she does is helpful and makes mundane tasks more fun.  I am so proud when she is proud of herself. This morning she did such a good job of making her bed and it put a smile on both of our faces.

Not At All Weekly Photography Post

I started my photography class last week and I am really excited about it.

The instructor asked us to take some photos during the week and bring 5 into class to share. So, today I dragged the family out for a very cold walk in the woods to get some snaps. Here are my favs…

Happy Valentines Day

When I was younger I always wanted my mom to make special days…well, special. Unfortunately, it wasn’t her thing. Not that I am complaining, she was a great mom. I have decided that I am going to make an effort to recognize those days for my kids. Not that I think Valentines Day is really that special…but Miss K does. She has been wishing everyone “Happy Balentimes Day” for a weeks now.

I tried…I really did. Unfortunately my efforts produced less than stellar results.

I bought a red heart helium balloon that I had planned on tieing to Miss K’s chair before bed, so it would be waiting for her in the morning. I took great effort to hide it, but as you might expect, it was found before bed.

Miss K and I made cookies to give out to friends. They tasted good at first but turned out to be as hard as hockey pucks. It was disappointing but at least we had fun making them.

I had planned on making heart shaped berry pancakes for breakfast. They were pretty, but not well recieved. Hubbs grabbed one, folded it in half and at it in two big bites, Miss K had a few bites and asked for syrup, and Mister J just refused to eat his.

Sigh.

It makes me wonder if my mom tried, but gave up after an experience like mine.

Food Waste Friday

Here is my food waste for the week. I took a crack at making rice baby crackers. Every time I gave him one, Mister J would taste it, play with it and then feed it to the dog. Oh well, at least I tried.

In other food news, last night as we were eating beef and bean tacos hubby announced that I should make them with ground turkey or chicken next time…you know…to cut down on our red meat intake. I nearly fell off my chair. Over the past month I have significantly cut down on the amount of meat (especially red) that we are eating. This meal was the only one all week that had any beef. Anyway, his suggestion sounds good to me.

I think part of his new-found interest in healthy eating and some of my other endeavors stems from the fact that it makes him “look cool” at work. Hubby brings his lunch to work everyday and sits in a boardroom with a group of women to eat. It seems that my frugal/green efforts have made him look quite knowledgable among the group. He often comes home and tell me how he was able to contribute to conversations about backyard gardening/who has the best selection and prices of baby carriers/cloth diapering/organic vs. local food etc. I only wish I could be a fly on the wall.

I still have not gotten around to making yogurt. It is coming soon though. I bought extra milk and the “starter”. Hopefully over the weekend.

Let’s Get Physical

I have been making an effort to exercise more. I know I need to do this in order to achieve and maintain a healthy body weight. It has been years since I have been at that healthy weight, but I am on my way!

It is embarrassing for me to be overweight and out of shape. I am not embarrassed in a public sort of way where I care what others think. I am embarrassed in a more personal way. I spent 4 years at university learning about exercise and the human body. I graduated with a BSc. in Kinesiology. For years I worked helping others become more physically fit.

Somewhere along the way I lost my passion. I think I got disheartened with how little our government and the general population cared. At this point it is important to note that I have never been one of those ripped super athletes. I have always had a little chub and never really cared for working out so hard I vomit.

Recently out government has come out with new physical activity guidelines. For adults, there has been a reduction in the recommended minimum time spent doing physical activity. However, the recommendations are more specific with regard to intensity, among other things. If you want to take a look at the guidelines you can find them here:

http://www.csep.ca/CMFiles/Guidelines/CSEP-InfoSheets-adults-ENG.pdf

Also of note, is the change in the time recommendation for children, to 60 minutes a day. You can find the guidelines here:

http://www.csep.ca/CMFiles/Guidelines/CSEP-InfoSheets-child-ENG.pdf

In an effort to improve my fitness I have been spending 30 minutes with my wii fit every night. Miss K loves to join in. Last night I skipped my workout and she was very upset with me. She even called me on it this morning. Gotta love having your very own personal trainer.