Week in the life of…

Week32

3rd – 9th August

We’ve been spending most evenings researching and finalising our accommodation for our US holidays. We’ve booked Chicago, Pittsburgh, Niagara Falls and Orlando. We’re still looking at Miami and figuring out where we want to stay in LA. As that is something that both James and I sit down to do, I haven’t gotten around to posting this sooner.

This week Jack had fun going down the slide and playing with the fake grass in the new kids play section at Waterstones Cafe. The cafe is quite nice, close to home, coffee is always good and the menu has some great options. At first Jack wasn’t too sure about the slide and held on the side, but after the first time going down, went down with a massive smile on his face, each time.

Jack was allowed to sit at the dining table like a big boy when we went out for dinner to the Plough Hotel in Footscray with Bec. The lovely waitress gave Jack a comfy cushion to support him in the highchair, and he was enthralled with being at the table. He was happy chewing on the table, sharing lots of smiles, and being fed food by Dad. He had chips and ice cream – I had tried so hard to limit his exposure to chips.

Megan, Liam, Jack and I ventured over to Highpoint on Thursday. We wandered around and attempted to not buy anything. On a plus, we did reach our daily steps! Jack and I went to Altona to Nan and Poppy’s house for dinner, before heading over to Laureen’s and seeing great Nan Shirley.

Jack was lucky enough to share a big bath with dad. He loves bath time, and the more water, the better it is for splashing! Most nights now, the blind, the walls and the floor end up saturated from Jack’s overenthusiastic splashing!

Week in the life of…

Week31

27th July – 2nd August

Gaahhh I’m so behind in doing this weeks one, well last weeks round up, really.

Getting excited about our trip to the states later in the year – we’ve basically decided to throw out all our old plans of revisiting LA, Vegas and venturing into Texas. Instead we’re heading to Chicago, Pittsburgh, Buffalo & Niagara Falls, Orlando (maybe Miami) and then finishing in LA. Planning a trip and counting down used to be the exciting part, and would hype you up. Now with Jack in tow, I’m more concerned. Concerned about travelling all those hours in a plane with an 11 month old, concerned about navigating our way around with a baby – it makes shuttles, and taxis, and transport in general just that little bit harder. Do we take a pram, do we buy a little travel pram, how do we go with car seats, car hire??? The list is endless. All the things that in our honeymoon trip, we didn’t have to contend with.

This week we visited Saltwater Coast, had breakfast in their cafe, walked the fitness circuit around the park, while Jeff demonstrated some of the exercises and checked out the new park that looks like it will be opening soon! Parks and playground equipment have come a long way since I was a kid. We had boring metal and general slides, swings, and climbing apparatus. The new park had landscaped gardens, splashy water features perfect for summer, and colourful themed play equipment. Will be adding that park to the (mental) list that I have compiled in my drive by’s of all the parks in close vicinity to home.

Jack and I also had breakfast with Nan at Alamanda Cafe this week. He loves sitting up at the table, banging away, looking around and watching all the other kids in the cafe.  Jeff and I also took Benny for a walk around Apex park and in the off lead dog section. While I’m overly cautious of him off lead, he behaved himself and even ran up, over-enthusiastically, to 2 grogeous Great Danes. He ended up covered in slobber, but wasn’t at all scared by their size.

Jack received a swimming certificate this week – in recognition of his ‘fantastic kicking legs’ – one very proud mummy here! He’s also attempting to pull himself up onto his knees to reach all the buttons on his walker. So maybe in the not so distant future, he might be attempting to pull himself up and walk along the furniture. With Dad away in Perth for the second last road trip of the Ice Hockey season, I made Jack pancakes. When James and I would travel from Perth to home, the Virgin Lounge in Perth had a broken pancake machine, and each subsequent trip, we would race in and hope that the machine had been fixed. I think after a full year, we still hadn’t seen the pancake machine. So, once again, Dad missed out on pancakes, but Jack and I got to eat (all of) them!

It would have also been my mums 60th birthday on the 27th of July! Forever 48, always loved and missed – Happy Birthday!

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Week in the life of…

Week30

20th July – 26th July

We hit 8 months this week. In less than 4 months time, we’ll have celebrated James’ and mine 30th birthdays, travelled to the states on our first family overseas trip and celebrated Jack’s first birthday! But I’m not counting down to those things just yet. Still heaps to go and do! James had his first day off from working the weekend in what felt like forever, and it was nice to just relax and appreciate family time. On a frightfully fresh Saturday afternoon, we visited the local football and spent some quality time  with Uncle Sam & Poppy.

Jack had his 8 month check up, and is still in the 25th percentile for height, weight and head circumference. He’s grown 20cm since birth and is now 69cm, he’s also gained 5.51kgs, and is now 8.46kgs. His next appointment will be when he’s one.  Will be interesting to see what his measurements are then and what he is able to achieve when the time comes around.

 

 

Week in the life of…

Week29

 

13th – 19th June

We had some big firsts this week – first roll over, first swimming lesson and first time at the park.

Jeff and I were at Alamanda for breakfast on Monday and as the sun was shining when we finished, we wandered down the path and took Jack onto his first playground adventure. Jeff held him on the bouncy see-saw and the spring loaded motorbike. We also strolled past the ducks on the way out. We’re very lucky to live so close to amazing parks, gardens and wetlands. I’ve even started doing drive-by’s of all the parks in neighbouring estates to check out what they have. I’m just glad that the inner child in me hasn’t disappeared completely. Hopefully Jack will love spending hours going to and playing in all the parks that are in our area. Knowing that we have passed the shortest day for the year, allows me to dream that winter could be over in the blink of an eye. Unfortunately, being in Melbourne, I know too well that we’ve got more wintry, windy and cold days ahead.

Megan and I wandered down to Jump swim school one morning, just to ‘have a look.’ The next thing I knew, I’d signed up Jack to start his swimming sessions the next day! While I was a nervous wreck all morning before his lesson, once the lesson was over, I was much more relaxed. I think the idea of jumping in the pool, post baby, is a little nerve wracking, and it doesn’t matter how many walks or gym sessions you do, you’ll always know that your body just isn’t what it used to be. I’m pleased that Jack made it through his lesson with no tears, and neither did I!

Jack managed to finally roll over this week! I was anxiously awaiting the day, and knew that it wasn’t far off – all last week he was rolling his hips over, but just getting stuck on his shoulders. No longer can I leave him on one part of the floor and expect to come back to him in the same spot. He’s also managed to, from a sitting position, fall gracefully forward and support himself on his arms. Hopefully this will stop all those awkward face plants.

I’ve also started thinking of the toy sales for his birthday and Christmas. Arrgghhh, I’m not ready yet to think about his first birthday. Knowing that it is now less than 4 months away, also means that the inevitable return to work is just around the corner. The only happy point is thinking about planning our trip to the states. No, we still haven’t made any solid plans or booked internal flights or accommodation. One day James may actually spend enough time at home to sit down and nut this out! I’m just dreaming about eating my way around (yet again) although I thankfully won’t be drinking as many mojitos and cocktails as I did on our honeymoon! I think I might need to start thinking about a shopping list and hopefully we have enough room in our luggage.

 

Week in the life of…

Week28

6 – 12th July

Jack was still sick this week, we even had a few days of high temperature. Thankfully Panadol seemed to knock it back down to normal range, and even though we had more sleepless nights, we seem to be getting slowly back on track. We had breakfast with Uncle Jeff on Monday morning and we finally said goodbye to Wyky, our Commodore that we’ve had for a few years on Tuesday. I was meant to catch up with Bec on Friday, but postponed until Sunday. The weekend was meant to be horrible, freezing cold, wet and windy. Saturday arrived and having researched Pinterest for rainy photo inspiration, I waited for the rain to come. Of course, the day cleared up, and all I could do was wait for Sunday and the promise of extreme wet weather. Sunday thankfully brought the rain, and I only had 10 minutes to snap a few photos before running out the door to meet Bec at Harbourtown. I was very, very happy with the photo of Jack, hands on the glass, staring outside as the rain dripped down the window. Bec bought Jack a little Changing of the Guard teddy from her trips around Europe. We also went across to the Ice House to see James at work. Jack got to have quick cuddles with Uncle Sam before the game started, and Jack even got to sit in Dad’s seat and pretend to take over for the day. He was a natural, reaching for the take-bar and smashing his way through the buttons.

Week in the life of…

Week27

29th June – 5th July

Poor Jack has been hit by a cold this week – all snotty noses, unpredictable sleeping and the smell of euky bear. While I generally love the smell of euky bear/Vicks, it really opens up your nose and while this mumma is still adjusting to the joys of food number 2’s, it’s not exactly the best combination when Jack’s on the change table… We missed out on catching up with Jack’s friends this week – the last thing other mum’s want are bubbas sharing snotty noses around! We still caught up with Uncle Jeffy for brekky and coffee – Jack loved being able to whack the table with his hands. He took great delight in the crash, bang and tinkle of the cutlery sitting atop the plates. He quickly cottoned on when Jeff would soften the blows by putting his hands under Jack’s, and Jack would stretch to reach around Jeff’s arms.

With James heading to Adelaide this weekend, I had a spare Friday night and I thought I’d attempt a chicken pie. Mum used to make the best chicken pie – Jeff and Dave used to love it anyway. It used to contain mushrooms or something that I didn’t like, so I’d use the excuse that I wouldn’t eat slugs, and mum would make another meal just for me. The things she used to do – I shake my head at my own antics… Anyway, Jeff came over and braved my chicken pie and I’ll definitely make it again soon. It must have been the week to attempt new things. I made cookies and cream brownies (which I unfortunately burnt – forgetful mum, oven temp settings etc etc), banana bread with my over ripe brown bananas, and then this pie. In some ways  I prefer when James is out/away/visiting his other family (just checking if he actually reads this) so that I can brave new recipes/ ideas. My brother eats like a horse, so I generally feel safe dishing something up to him.

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This week also brought about Ben’s 2nd birthday. In some ways I feel sorry that I don’t have the time to devote to Benny, just like in the ‘old days.’ While I always try to ensure that we have cuddle time on the couch or in bed without Jack around,  it can be hard to find that balance. With the Melbourne wintry days really set in, the motivation to go walking is lacking. But, I know that Jack would be warm and snuggly in his pram and I can put on as many layers as I need to brave the elements, so I’m aiming to start again. Real soon… maybe… as long as it’s not raining…

On Sunday, Leanne and I ventured out to the Swagger Child Design Market in North Melbourne. We love a good market, always happy to wander the aisles and browse the offerings. I had sworn off buying any more clothes for Jack, and managed to walk out with a pair of slouchy pants from Mr Willo (https://instagram.com/mr.willo/) and a custom t-shirt from Little Scooch(http://www.littlescooch.com.au/).  Benny had gotten the birthday treatment – he was allowed to unwrap his presents on Sunday morning, and then went for a ride in the car to Nanny’s and Poppy’s. Poor Poppy got to go for a walk, twice, and Benny slept very well that night.

 

Ben’s 2nd Birthday

As I write this post, my faithful fur baby is asleep on the end of the bed. In theory I’d say that he’d guard me from all the monsters out there, but, as I know Benny, I know that his guarding would involve sneaking his head around the bedroom door to check what’s there and then safely barking from behind the open door. Apparently you can never be careful enough. Despite all the fur that floats around, I can honestly say I love having Ben as part of our lives.

He came to be after I pestered my husband for 6 months that I wanted a puppy. He finally gave in, on several provisos; a)  I had about a week or so to get him and b) I could only get one if it was less than 20km from home. I had been looking on the labrador breeding sites for so long, and knew which litters were available around the time. Having owned a female dog before, I was happy for a girl, but, there weren’t any female pups available. The only other thing that I knew he had to be was yellow. With my beige tiles and carpet, I knew I couldn’t handle having a choc or black labrador in my home! And so, the searching started. I didn’t manage to meet the time deadline, but, I did (sort of) manage the distance deadline. We picked Benny up from the airport, after he had flown down from northern NSW. All I remember is getting this massive dog crate up on the bench, and this lady opened up the door to find our little yellow boy, with simply GIGANTIC feet! I had wondered what we’d gotten ourselves into. He was 10 weeks old, and completely wary of his new surroundings. He was the best first wedding anniversary present that you could possibly get.

He has some of the funniest behaviours – we’re not quite sure why the rangehood is so scary, or why odd behaviour sets him off to do his mad run. We know that he loves going for rides in the car, especially when his head is out the window, and his ears are flapping in the breeze. We know that he has a preference for a bowl of ‘big boy food’ over a piggy ear, or even a meaty fresh bone. We know he loves destroying his soft toys, especially poor puppy – one set of eyes, ears, tails and limbs at a time. He is also happy to greet you at the door with teddy or lobby in his mouth, and will go and pick up each toy by name. Unfortunately, he still thinks that once you are inside the house, that you need to be led down the hallway, generally by him grabbing your own jumper or whatever piece of clothing dangles close to his eye level. When he’s heading out for a run, or coming home after a big walk, he loves nothing more, than putting the lead in his mouth and staying right beside you. Even if you take him off his lead, he will still walk beside you with his lead in his mouth. And we can’t forget Ben’s ‘wake-up Dad’ morning routine! All these things and more make up our special boy. Since the arrival of Jack, he’s changed even more. Yes, he still does his silly boy mad sprints up and down the hallway, ears back, legs unable to get enough traction on the tiles, but he also shows us a more docile side. Ben’s happy to curl up, generally at Jack’s feet, and receive several kicks and never bat an eyelid. I’m so proud of how he is adapting to life with a little one around. I can just see the day where we will be replaced – no longer will Ben want to curl up on our bed, entangled in our feet, but he will choose Jack’s room, watching over the little boy that he will grow old with…

Week in the life of…

Week25

15 – 21st June

When sleep eludes you, you do funny things. Sentences make sense only to yourself, you stuff your face with whatever is in arm range and increasing the amount of caffeine, doesn’t help your situation. Since the Christmas/ New Year period, Jack magically ‘slept like a baby’ delivering 10-12 hours of uninterrupted sleep. We also managed to skip the 4 month sleep regression that can rear its nasty head and disrupt whatever pattern bubs has. So this week, nearing 7 months, we think those toothy-pegs may have been playing havoc with our little boy. They are yet to make an appearance, however, Jack made an appearance each night, generally every 30 minutes between 1am and 3am.  Oh, and occasionally at 11pm.

Jack and I headed into the city to visit my work on Tuesday. We spent the morning saying hi, and then disappeared to the Emporium for lunch and visited a few stores before heading home. I can honestly say that the change rooms at Emporium are so nice and new. The space allows mums and bubs to relax, toddlers to play and they are so clean. I ventured, quickly, into H & M – never a fun place to take a pram. The best shopping trip in there, is a fast one! We then walked to Flinders Street and caught the train and the bus home. I miss my daily wanderings down Bourke Street during my lunch break. I’m sure that my wallet doesn’t miss it though.

On Wednesday I did my weekly PT session in the morning. In an attempt to shape up before the big 3-0, and with 17 weeks until that date, I need to make a few changes to my daily habits. I think I managed a whole week and a half without eating carrot cake. So, I bought a food and exercise diary from kmart, and on the days where it’s not exactly horrible, I’m aiming to walk Benny. The other reason I want to tone up, and lose a few kg is that we’re planning a trip to the states right after my birthday. Last time we were there (for out honeymoon) I put on between 6-8kg. I love my food, and will make reasonable choices, but I also know that it is a holiday, and I want to enjoy myself! We’re yet to decide which part of the states we will visit, as we’re waiting for the NHL to release the 2015-2016 schedule.

Megan and I went for breakfast down to Werribee and afterwards, we took the boys to the library to  have a play. Uncle Jeffy also dropped in and helped cooked dinner on Friday night while James was attending a corporate box footy game. With Saturday being Jack’s 7 month milestone, and the weather behaving itself, I loaded the pram with a picnic blanket and took Jack to the local park to get some photos. I’m so very lucky to have one beautiful little boy, and one amazing camera that can make photos look absolutely awesome in the hands of a beginner.