Monday, February 28, 2011

We've finally joined the sickness club

So I was thinking of this blog at 2:30 AM on saturday night when I woke up to find Emilie bawling in her bed covered in vomit!

Yup, it's finally happened, gastro has hit this house. So far only Émilie is sick and my hands are cracked from washing them so much in order to avoid getting it myself.

I just wanted to send a shout out to all of you who have been dealing with sick kiddies; especially on your own! I'm not sure how you pulled it off solo especially in the middle of the night when you are scrambling between comforting/cleaning the frightened toddler and cleaning/disinfecting the mess she's sitting in!

I thought of many of your posts and tips you had given. We really can't complain since she's 19 months and this is her first time really being sick but it's tough nonetheless. They are so helpless and listless and she is now absolutely terrified of our stainless steel bowls since she associates them with throwing up... poor kid.

The worst has passed and now it's a matter of seeing if I can get her to eat any solids (so far only saltine crackers have been accepted and tears at the sight of anything else), and monitoring the rash that has developed (heat rash from fever I believe).

All that to say, many of you have been in my thoughts over the last 48 hrs and I appreciated having read your posts on this sharing board.

Hoping all your little ones are healthy and happy.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

H - Learning from my mistakes

So gastro.... that's what you ladies call it, good old 'sickness and diarrhea' (tell it like it is) in the UK. Boy, it's ghastly.

Thursday afternoon, F is struck by vomiting.
Thursday night, vomiting finally subsides once mummy realises that even the tiniest sip of water provokes retching.
Pedialyte? You have got to be kidding mum.
Sleep is our best friend.

Friday morning - mummy isn't feeling so hot.
She gets the D in S&D.... all day.
Mummy reads a lot. When to reintroduce solids? Any solids? Milk? Some say no, only water, rice, bread, bananas and apples (including my mother). Others (Pediatricians who should know better) say EVERYTHING. Normal diet equals quicker recovery.
Who is right? Experimenting on F begins.

To cut to the chase, Mum is right - NO dairy, not a drop. Because if you give milk to a recovering gastro sufferer you get cheese vomit and nasty nasty diarrhea and a very sad baby. Sorry for the gritty details but I want to warn you off the 'new' approach to giving solids. After yesterday's dairy disaster today I followed the old and wise sayings of our mothers. She ate bread, rice cooked in broth, banana, apple, cheerios, bread and chicken soup. And I have not seen hide nor hair of them since, not from any end.

Learn from my mistakes!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

On the topic of food... a (cook)book recommendation

My mum recently gave me a book that I find myself referring to as a "(cook)book" because it is so much more than a collection of recipes. It's called The Family Dinner: Great Ways to Connect with Your Kids, One Meal at a Time by Laurie David (ex-wife of the producer of Seinfeld, interestingly enough). This book is not only beautiful to flip through and a source of a good variety of recipes (many vegetarian, and many not), but also a real inspiration when it comes to building up the tradition of the family dinner in your home. It's full of anecdotes about family dinner and ideas for connecting with your kids (admittedly older than ours are at the moment) at the table.

When I first got this book, I sat down and read the first 60 pages practically straight through, which is not something I can say about many books at all, let alone cookbooks. And, get this: little a. is extremely drawn to flipping through the pictures in this book - cover to cover - with me! I find that particularly touching, because I have no doubt that this book will be a staple in our home throughout her childhood. Maybe someday I will give her her own copy when she starts a family of her own. Yes, this book really does make me feel that sappy.

Happy reading, and bon appétit!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Backseat Gourmet: Picky Eaters are a Parent's Responsibility

A great blog post about picky eaters. I like her advice to Step Back and Relax.

Backseat Gourmet: Picky Eaters are a Parent's Responsibility


Sunday, February 13, 2011

Daddy gone restaurant?

This is often what AP asks when her father is not home. He works at a restaurant near our place and yes, often he is there when he is not home. But this Wednesday, he will be travelling out of the country, to Ghana, for almost 8 weeks. I really have no idea what to expect. What will I say when she asks me where he is? She knows the word “Ghana” and she knows that it’s “far away”, but that’s about it. Since he often works nights, she’s used to going to bed without him around and she’s gotten into the routine of kissing a picture of him before going to sleep. I am definitely the one who spends more time with her, for a bunch of reasons, but she is definitely very attached to her daddy and to our routine. Lately he's been taking her to daycare in the mornings, and I leave before she wakes up. The girl loves structure, like most toddlers do I think, and I’m worried about the interruption. I’m not too worried about myself and how I’ll cope, but I really feel unprepared for her reaction. Any tips on what I can say to her in preparation and when he's actually gone? Thanks.


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Car seat frustration

I'm having a really hard time tighting the straps enough on C's forward-facing car-seat, and I'm wondering if there's something wrong with the seat (or with me??) or is it just a regular car seat thing? (We inherited the seat from my brother-in-law; it's fine for expiration date and all of that stuff, but I'm wondering if maybe the straps are twisted inside or something?) However, they seem quite easy to tighten if she's not in the seat or if there's a lot of slack, but once it gets within a few inches of her chest I kill myself trying to get it tighter.

We switched C to the forward-facing seat around the same time we had to start dressing her in a full snowsuit, so I'm not sure how much is just due to the bulkiness. It's one of those things for which I have a very low frustration tolerance (i.e., it's freezing out, we're in a rush to get to work/daycare, she's potentially screaming and arching her back because she doesn't want her mitts on, etc.) I'm wondering - do I just suck it up and keep yanking on that strap, or do we invest in a new seat? If someone told me there's one out there that's super "smooth" to get in and out, I think we'd go for it!!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Mamas' Coffee Night

I just wanted to post quickly to share something really simple with all of you. So simple I can't believe we haven't been doing it ourselves.

A friend invited me to join her and some of her other mom friends for 'Mamas' Coffee Night' last night, something they do every couple of weeks on a Sunday or Monday. We met at 7:30, once all the kidlets were in bed, at a mutually convenient coffee shop, got ourselves drinks and treats, and sat and talked, and talked, and talked... until they kicked us out at 10:00! It was so fun and such a great way to pick each others' brains about different issues and share stories. It made me wish we had organized such a regular get together while I was still in the neighbourhood with all of you.... but alas! So I offer the idea to you, and hope you will run with it, because I can already tell that it's something that will be good for my mental health and my parenting.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Amber teething necklace, I love you!

Little a had been having a cranky kind of week, waking up a couple of times each night, napping for only short periods and waking up miserable, and generally being out of sorts. She's been working on some new teeth, so I was pretty sure it was teething but the Tylenol and chamomilla (homeopathic treatment) we were giving her didn't really seem to improve the situation. So, after a couple of days of toughing it, I decided it was time to try a teething necklace.

I had seen them on friends' babies and thought they were cute, but honestly little a's teething woes had never warranted one. Oh, and I was also a little sceptical about how well they could really work. That being said, the other day I announced to my husband that it was time to buy one. TODAY.

So my dear husband made it his mission for the day, and came home with a gorgeous Baltic amber teething necklace from a local baby shop for his little girl. (It seems that amber teething necklaces are more popular out West, whereas I had seen a lot of witch hazel bark necklaces in Montreal - I don't know anything about the differences or levels of effectiveness between the two.) We put it on right away, thinking that at the very least we would feel like we were doing what we could to make the situation more bearable for all of us.

My, oh my, has the necklace exceeded our expectations! Little a has slept for 12 solid hours the last two nights, and yesterday she had a 3.5 hour nap (it would have been longer, but I had to wake her up because we were heading out for dinner). I think the pain-relieving qualities of the necklace are taking the edge off for her to get the rest she needs, whereas before she was in too much pain to keep sleeping. Everyone in our household is happier now, and her father and I are simply crossing our fingers that the fantastic sleep isn't just a coincidence or some kind of beginner's luck. If I have anything to say about it, that necklace is staying on until Little a is 6!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Play dough anyone?

Ok, I'm going to be lazy and just link to my blog if you'd like the recipe:

Homemade play dough recipe