Category Archives: Book

4 months – 4 am

It’s 4:30am as I am writing this blog post.

Katie today is 4 months and I have a lot of wonderful things to say about my 4 month old (she’s pretty spectacular)… but I’m also up at 4am for the 4th time this week.

Please, my little 4 month old, go the f**k to sleep.

Mommy loves you.

I didn’t do what I promised (I’m sorry)

I guess I left you hanging there in my last blog post and didn’t do what I said I was going to do.  So, here is my brief overview on the life changing events that have gone on since April 2015.

  • I’m pregnant with our second child (due early December). This came as a big surprise for my husband and I, since I have fertility issues and didn’t take any drugs to get pregnant this time. It’s a blessing, but a big surprise for us. It made me laugh a little to, since I attended the Blog Out Loud event in April and in one of Dani’s speeches she said that for some reasons bloggers have a lot of children. They do!
  • We now live a small home west of the city. My husband and I had a long chat about buying/selling our current home or to renovate it. We decided to buy and sell. We sold very quickly and bought the house next door to us. The only problem is, there is a 10 week gap between closing dates, so…
  • We are living in a 30 ft camping trailer. Honestly, it’s been going very well, but the first night was very very difficult for us with our toddler. It was very discouraging, but now she sleeps like a dream all night.
  • With our new gypsy lifestyle, we have taken advantage of travelling with the trailer a few times. We went to Logo’s Land in Coden and camped at a small fair outside of Smith Falls. Coming from a family that camped with a tent trailer when I was younger, camping with your “house” with all your belongings is a hell of a lot easier.
  • Life has not been super easy lately. There has been a lot of stress in my life that I am doing my best coping with and would rather not air that here, but just to let you know that I’m ok, but it’s one of the reasons I’ve taken a step back from regular blogging.

Other little happy things:

  • Our daughter turned 2 and we had a lovely beach day birthday party for her.
  • I’m reading Grey to see what all the fuss is about, it’s o.k.
  • I’ve found two amazing threads on Red Flag Deals for Pampers codes and My Vegas Slots (dreaming of a vacation someday) that I just love browsing.
  • The weather this summer has been beautiful and we have spent a lot of time on the beach.
  • Pinterest does a great job to keep my mind off things.
  • I haven’t watched TV in over a month… Not that it was ever a problem, but kind of nice, you know.
  • Love the new Apple Music update. The playlists are amazing.

That’s it for now. No promises when the next blog post will be, but hope that you’ve enjoyed reading this one.

Hope your having a lovely summer.

Jenny

Mr. Stork has arrived in Ottawa!

 

I don’t know about you, but it feels like Mr. Stork has arrived in Ottawa. If feels like a baby boom is happening in Ottawa. Don’t you feel like everyone you know has either had a baby, having a baby or trying to have a baby. It’s wonderful news. All of it. Super excited for all of you and your friends. We’re adding to Ottawa’s population people! Keep it up!

I have to admit that when someone tells me their having a baby, I’m eager to tell them about all the cool websites, checklists and forums that they should sign up for.  I’m that guy. Some websites that offered me some fabulous advice and tips that I just have to share with everyone.

When I was pregnant, I was very thankful when people offered their two cents. Of course, you always take what you want from it and leave the rest, which is what I hope you will do with the following list.

Here is my list of great websites and resources that you should pay attention to if you are trying to get pregnant, are pregnant or have a little one.

Trying to have a baby

Getting pregnant wasn’t easy for my husband and I (I’ll save that story for another blog post). While we were trying to “relax and let it happen”, here are a few websites that I kept my eyes on while we were trying to conceive (TTC).

Baby Centre – Community: They have a great TTC section for those that want to talk with others that are going through the same thing. They also have subgroups for those dealing with more specific and/or delicate situations.

Fertility Friend: A great online tracking tool to figure out your ovulation window. If you are tracking your temperature, this site will be very useful for you. They also have a great app that you can download for free.

Ottawa Fertility Center: I count myself very lucky to have been refered here. This clinic took really good care of us and if you ever have to visit this center, I hope they take good care of you too.

Early Pregnancy Tests Online: Buying all those pregnancy and ovulation tests can really add up. This website has great prices on everything you’ll need TTC.

 

Your pregnant (!*$&!)

Congrats! This is the time to take care of yourself and indulge in those crazy cravings (buffalo chicken wraps and red delicious apples for me!). Don’t worry about how much you’re sleeping. Do it. Take advantage of it. You’ll be surprised how little you’ll get later (unless you have a “angel baby” that sleeps all night from day 1… then I hate you… just kidding.. sort of).

Baby Centre – Community: Once you’re pregnant, move over to the pregnancy section. Baby Centre has also created birth groups, so that you can interact with other moms who are due around the same time as you. Baby Centre also has some great apps that you can download which will track your baby’s progress week by week.

Baby Centre – Baby Registry Checklist: I love lists. This is a great one to get your baby registry up and going. It’s very overwhelming all the stuff you need to buy. This is a great checklist to get you started.

Old Navy Maternity: Shortly after you get pregnant you’ll start to notice that some things that fit loose one day, might be a little tighter the next. In comes maternity clothing. You may be lucky and get a wack load of clothing that you’re previous pregnant friend has and lets you borrow, but you might be pregnant in the opposite season as her or what she’s lending to you really isn’t your style.  Every Old Navy in Canada, I believe as of February 2013, should now have a small maternity clothing section. Old Navy often have sales on clothing (40% off everything!). So keep an eye out for these sales. Thyme and Motherhood Maternity also have good sales too once in a while.

Freebies for new moms: Sign up for ALL OF THEM. So fun!

 

Baby is here (!*$&! x2)

Now let the fun begin. Most of us have no idea what were doing. Just keep in mind, this baby has never had a parent before you, so don’t worry if you mess up, it can judge you.

A Cup of Joe (blog): I love this blog and her writing style. She’s a mom with two boys living in New York. My favorite blog post on her blog, is actually written by her husband. Every new mom and dad should read 8 confessions of a new dad. I have to agree with the 9 month comment. Let me know what you think.

Jenny wears glasses list of Ottawa consignment stores: For everything else that you didn’t get at your baby shower, don’t forget to go to visit consignment stores. You can often find what you need, in great condition and at a lower price.

Sleep Easy Solution: For those parents that might need to sleep train their kid. This book saved us.  I buy it for every baby shower I go to now. I always hope that you will never have to open or use this book, but I always find it comforting to know that you have it in your back pocket.

Information about Breath Holding Spells: Now I’m not adding this here to scare anyone, it’s more for information purposes. I never heard of this before I had my daughter and knew nothing about it.

 

What are your favorite websites/resources/tips? Let me know. I would love to hear them.

 

Gifts ideas for a 7-year-old girl

It may be Monday, but I’ve already got the weekend on my mind. Next Saturday, I will be celebrating a Frozen-loving, adventurous, imaginative, crafty friend’s daughter 7th birthday! Now, I’m no gift expert, so I’m looking at you for help. What do I give a 7-year-old for her birthday? Here are some ideas I’ve been given so far (let me know if they are good or bad):

Another suggestion I was given are books. Why kind of books does a 7-year-old like to read?

Let me know folks!

Sale on Books for Children at Bookoutlet.ca


Did you know that there is only 96 days until Christmas?!?!?

That’s why I’m so happy to see that the BookOutlet.ca is having a crazy sale on children books right now. Here is a list of a few books that my daughter loved from age 6 – 12 months and hope that your kids will love them too:

Baby Shaker Teethers ($2.99) – She loved this book. Not only are the images very colourful, the teether works great to keep her distracted while we were out and about.

Busy Zoo ($3.99) – She liked her crinkly fabric books. We had this one, a Curious George one and a Lamaze company one.

Bright Baby ($8.49) – This set makes an excellent baby shower gift. A friend of ours got us this set and it includes similar items to the two mentioned above and a bathtime book.

That’s Not My Meerkat ($3.99), That’s Not My Snowman ($3.49), That’s Not My Raindeer ($3.99) – Our daughter loves these Usborne Touchy Feely Books, although we never read the meerkat one, we did read about the polar bear, puppy, cat, tractor and train.

Itsy Bitsy Spider Finger Puppet Book ($2.99) – This book can turn any sad face into a happy face. We actually bought this book in French from Chapters. Just a little wiggle from this spider can really make her day.

Here are a list of books that I remember loving as a child that are on sale:

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly ($3.99) – I can’t wait to buy this for my daughter. I remember loving this book as a child.

Baby Beluga ($3.49) – Anything by Raffi is a winner for me.

Shipping is not free over $25+, but it’s very reasonable within Canada (almost free).

If you have any questions about any of the books I’ve mentioned above, please comment in the section below.

 

Although this post may contain Bookoutlet.ca affiliate links, the comments and recommendations are completely my own. I would recommend these books regardless of being affiliated with this company. Just a bonus that they are having a sale on these books right now. Enjoy!

 


The Best Seller In Bargain Books

3 things I’m going to stop doing because I don’t want to be a disastrous blog.

Lately, I’ve been reading a lot about blogging. I want this little blog of mine to be a success and turn into something pretty cool. While reading How to Make Money with Your Blog (because who wouldn’t want to make a little extra income here and there), three tips it gives to avoid being a disastrous blog really hit home:

  1. Credibility Kills – From now on, I will fully disclose products that have been given to me for review. I’m pretty sure that I have done this in the past. Consider it from now on, full disclosure.
  2. Lack of content – I will do my best to post at least 200 word posts.
  3. Hot linked images – I didn’t realize the terribleness that exists using hot linked images. In case you don’t know what a hot linked image is, it’s the practice of adding an image into your blog post that is hosted by another Web site. Ek! I’ve totally done this. From now on, I will only post my own photos, even if they are totally random and I will hopefully have time to create more relevant photos for future blog posts.

What are your tips for blog etiquette? I’m still learning here and would love to hear your suggestions.

Do you remember Raffi (@Raffi_RC)?

For those of you that are born in the 80’s, do you remember Raffi*? He sang songs like “Bumping Up and Down”, “Down by the Bay**” and “Baby Beluga”. Yeah. Right a bell? Saturday morning, there was nothing on TV, so searched YouTube on our Apple TV and found some awesome Raffi Playlists. Here are a few that I found:

I hope this makes your Sunday just a little bit brighter.

 

 

 

*Did you know that Raffi was an Egyptian-born Canadian singer-songwriter? Pretty awesome eh?

**Did you also know that there is a children’s book called “Down by the bay”? It’s only $7.95 at Chapters.

My favourite mom apps

Over the past year, I’ve gotten to know my baby and my iPhone extremely well. We’ve always been close, but we got even closer while I was on maternity leave. I also noticed that I’m a great multi-tasker. Not only was I breastfeeding my daughter, but I was also searching the Internet to find out “why is my baby crying”.

Here is a list of my favourite apps that I used while on maternity leave:

1. My Pregnancy Today and My Baby Today – Both apps helped me a lot during pregnancy and helped me learn about my baby milestones. Cute cartoons would show up once in a while, which I found great to be great comic relief and the to-do lists they provided helped keep me on track.

2. Relax Melodies – Since she was 8 months, we have been using this app. I’m actually listening to “slow waves” right now through the baby monitor while I’m typing this. When we sleep trained our daughter at 6 months, one of the tools it says to use is white noise. While I was in Florida, her crib was next to a bathroom that had a fan. It worked great for those two months. It offered a light glow and the fan as a noise machine. When I got home from our trip, I didn’t have any sound machines that would go all night. After doing some research on Amazon.com, I came across this app. We had an old iPhone 4 that we weren’t using and decided to put the app on the phone, plug the phone in all the time and let it run. It works so well. It never shuts off, but you can set a timer if you want.  The best part, I didn’t have to spend $50+ on a noise machine, this app is FREE!

3. Candy Crush – Who isn’t addicted to Candy Crush? I certainly am. I’m not addicted enough to search for Candy Crush cheats, but I have paid .99 cents to get a few more moves to pass a level. Don’t judge. You’ve done it too!

4. Fisher-Price Giggle Gang – So we used this app mostly when we didn’t want the baby to fall asleep in the car, so that she could have a good nap at home. Our daughter was about 6 months when we started using this app. It was one of the only apps that would keep her attention long enough to keep her awake until we got home. Now I find she gets a little bored with that app, but it worked like a charm when it did.

5. Google Chrome – As mentioned above, a search engine app was key in the first few months of parenthood for us. I didn’t know what I was doing, I needed help. I searched for things like “why does my baby have goop coming out of her eye?” “Why is my baby crying?” “Does my baby have gas?” “How to stop a baby from crying?” and so on. It was extremely helpful. I don’t know how people did this in the olden days. 😛

6. Next Issue – If you’re reading this and now at #6 on my list, you’re probably a) a new mom b) a recent back-to-work mom or c) have a friend that is a new mom and plan to send her my list of mom apps for her to read. Next Issue is an excellent concept for anyone really. I have to be honest, I haven’t downloaded this app*, BUT I plan to tonight because I started work again on Tuesday and I finally have a few minutes to myself at lunch time to indulge in a good magazine. Next Issue is basically an all-you-can-read app for magazines. You know how magazines are normally between $3-$8 per magazine, well with Next Issue you can a basic subscription for $9.99/month or premium subscription for $14.99/month. This is a steal since you would probably end up spending more than that a month on 2-3 magazines, now you can have them all! Muahahahah. The best part?!? If you use this link, you’ll get a 30-day trial for free. FREE!

7. Instagram – While I was on maternity leave, I used Instagram a lot. I used it because I didn’t want to flood my Facebook with our family pictures, but did want to post a ton of pictures of our daughter to our friends and family that did want to see it. I currently use Instagram a little less for personal purposes and more for the blog these days. I guess that’s what happens when your little one turns one.

8. Netflix – Speaking of breastfeeding, we can’t forget our about pumping days. I actually really enjoyed pumping. I only did it a few times (which is probably why I say I liked it) and enjoyed every minute of it. Why? Because at that point, it was the only time of day that I had to myself. Our daughter was a terrible sleeper, so for the first three months, I actually had to sleep with her on me (bad I know, but you do what you have to do) and then beside me. We were attached to the hip (which I also loved)… BUT when I did want that alone time and I only got it when I had to pump. So, when it came time, I loaded up Saving Hope on Netflix, got my double breast pump ready and pumped away.

9. iBooks – I really enjoyed using iBooks on my iPad mini when I was in Florida. It allowed me to buy books and not have to lug around clunky books with me. Here are a list of books I downloaded on mat leave: The Best Homemade Baby Food on the Planet, The Sleepeasy Solution, Divergent and  The Husband’s Secret (which I still haven’t read).



* Update: Since I have written this post, I have downloaded this app and love it. I use it to read magazines on the way to work, to relax after the baby is down for the night and to browse magazines during my lunch hour. I really wish I had thought to download this app while on Mat leave.

Quick Review and Discussion Questions: Allegiant by Veronica Roth

Just finished reading Allegiant by Veronica Roth and loved it. Have you read the Divergent series? The third book, by far, was my favourite. It actually surprised me that I liked it so much. I found that there was a lot of long jibber jabber about the history of the factions, but then when I thought I was losing interest in the book *BAM!* something exciting happens. I was really surprised at by the ending, but at the same time not really that surprised. I’m not going to give it away, because it’s really good.

Have you read Allegiant? What did you think of the book? 

Here are my book discussion questions for you:

  1. How do you think Four and Christina’s relationship will evolve?
  2. Which faction do you think you would have been a part of?
  3. Do you agree with what Peter wanted to do with the memory serum?
  4. What was your favourite part of the book?