The sweet sound… of silence?

As each day starts I look forward to the potential new development from Mr. James. Will I hear a giggle today? Will be grasp something in his hand? Will he start walking? Ok.. that last one is still a long time coming, but when Thomas was little I was always looking forward to that next big step.

I’m taking things much slower with James. Considering he is most likely going to be my last baby, I’m appreciating things a lot more this time around. The fact that he doesn’t latch on to my leg when I try to step away from him for a minute, or that I tell him what he’s having for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks and I’m not told it’s yucky, blah, or that he doesn’t like it.

When Thomas started talking I wanted the speed of his learning curve to reach 100 words a day. I wanted my little guy to start communicating with me, verbally, immediately and perfectly so that I understood everything he would say. As he nears his third birthday (in less than one month), there are moments when I wish he had as many words as James: none.

I find myself constantly being verbally harassed for milk, snacks, to look at his pee, poop, snot. It just never ends.

Car rides are sometimes unbearable. Mommy… where’s the police car? Where’s the fire truck? Where’s the tractor? I want to see another! I want a snack. Mommy, mommy, mommy, I want a snack. Mommy whose house is that? Mommy, where’s the police car? Where’s the fire truck…. you get the point.

There are times when I want to bury my head in the sand and ignore everything around me. Just for a moment enjoy pure silence.

Thomas has recently started using his words a lot more when he’s upset instead of just yelling. Here is a list of his favourite sentences:
1. Don’t touch me
2. I don’t like that
3. That’s not nice
4. That’s not ok
5. Mommy… Daddy did (insert anything my husband has done here)

I’m happy he’s asserting himself more, but my goodness… can you please just be quiet for one minute? Just one little minute. I’m not asking for much, just a bit of time to rest my brain.

But at the end of the day once we’ve read our bedtime stories, brushed teeth and went potty, the one sentence I cannot get enough of is “je t’aime maman”. That’s my cherry on top. A really good cherry.

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The bunny

It’s been noted recently by a friend of mine that I haven’t keep upkeeing my blog. I sorta fell off the face of the blogging world. Honestly, I have become quite selfish with my time in the evening and weekends, and I simply don’t have the time during the week since I’ve returned to work. I did change the look of Tales of Thomas, although that doesn’t really count.

But, I know you’re all dying to hear about how I’ve prepared to celebrate our first real Easter with Thomas since last year didn’t really count. Well, I’ve prepared nothing. One big fat whooping nothing. No chocolate, no eggs, no toys as gifts (I’m completely against gifting for Easter) and no egg hunt. I really didn’t spend any time figuring out how to make Easter fun. It’s not that I didn’t want to, I guess it just wasn’t top of mind so I chose to ignore it.

Then this morning happened. Ugh… I love my daycare provider, but seriously, she has to stop being so creative. She’s totally trumping me as a mom and making me seen like this boring old person who offers no creativity to this house. The following photo is this morning’s daycare breakfast. Enough said.

 

A day at the park

After being back at work full-time for more than a week, the daily schedule is starting to fall into place. Dinners are now much simpler than before and the clean-up takes place after Thomas has gone to bed. My work clothes are picked out at night before I go to bed, and any ironing is done at that time.

Thomas’s backpack is stocked with a fresh change of clothes as well as with the notebook his daycare provider and I exchange every day with notes about what he ate, naps, play, etc.

When I leave in the morning, I know I won’t be seeing him for several long hours. Hours during which he will discover new things, learn new skills and pick up a few new words (one day). Although it sometimes makes me really sad that I’m not there for those things, A is doing all she can to keep me in the loop. I often turn on my computer in the morning, or when I return from lunch, to find an email about how the day’s been progressing. These emails typically contain a photo (or two ) of my little guy doing something fun – as was the case today when he went to the park and played in the sand for the first time.

Yes I live in Ottawa, Canada. Yes it’s  March. But yes, it’s been warm enough this past week to be in shorts and a t-shirt. Heck – I’ve even caught a few people sun-bathing (like my neighbour in the back who wears a Speedo). Regardless, it’s been an amazingly beautiful March. Never before have we had such hot weather this time of year for such a long stretch.

So, my little guy enjoyed his time outside and discovered sand. I wasn’t there to see it with my own eyes, but at least I could look at the pictures and smile.

Thomas and his daycare buddy Carter.

Thomas discovering sand for the first time.

The working mom

I have officially joined the ranks of the working mom. Having completed two 1/2 days at work, I once again appreciate the weekend!

I was surprised to see an empty calendar when I arrived at my desk. No scheduled meetings, no to-do list, just 4009 new emails that had to be filtered through. My employer suspends the account during maternity leave, but doesn’t de-activate it so I had 98% of emails to file in the junk folder.

Being on my own in the morning, I found myself taking deep breaths. Reacquainting myself with my surroundings and my office space. The best surprise was when I logged on to my computer to find an old desktop photo. Awe…..

My husband and I on our wedding day.

 

It made me quite emotional to see this photo again even though it hangs in our bedroom and I see it everyday.

My first morning also consisted of a Canadian tradition this time of year. I drank my Tim Hortons coffee and rolled up the rim. They love me SOOOOOO much at Timmy’s that they’ve invited me to play their game once again!

As as the day continued and I caught up with old friends, I was eagerly awaiting three o’clock when I would head to A‘s house to meet up with my little guy. I arrived with my mom so her and A could meet face to face once again.  Unfortunately the arrival of my mom meant that I became chopped liver for my son. He was incredibly excited to see his grandma and just gave me a little smile. Oh well… he knows who his mommy is and I know he loves her.

Next week – four full work days followed by a day off on Friday. My little guy is turning 1!

Back to school… I mean work.

Today has been bittersweet. I turned 32, spent the day with my son and a really good friend followed by a nice meal out with my husband. But it’s bittersweet because tomorrow morning at 5:40am my new life begins. The one where I rush to get ready in the morning, give Thomas his bottle, dress him, shower, do my hair, makeup, try to sneak in a bite to eat and head out the door for work.

Although I’m looking forward to returning to the daily 8-4 grind, a part of me will miss my pyjamas until 9am when Thomas goes down for a nap and I head into the shower. That same part will miss watching Jeff Hutcheson‘s Things I Learned on the Internet Today segment at 7:40am. And, that same little part will miss hearing a peep coming from upstairs as Thomas wakes from his naps.

But a different part of me looks forward to seeing my colleagues and doing more than sweeping the floor five times a day. I also look forward to taking the bus once in a while and being able to get lost in my thoughts as I listen to my iPod. I also really look forward to sharing stories with my husband during dinner time that don’t start with “So today Thomas…”

Tonight however I feel like I’m heading back to high school after summer vacation. I’ve meticulously packed my lunch, put out the clothes I plan on wearing and made sure all I need for my first day back is in my bag – including a pack of gum. I have tummy jitters and have no idea if I’ll even sleep tonight (I’m usually in bed by this time). Come tomorrow I’ll be welcomed by the smiles of old friends, but it will still be a new life.

So for now I head off to bed and hope that tomorrow goes smoothly. Here’s to a good 32nd year.

The unprepared daycare provider

I’ve always been happy with my choice of Thomas’s daycare… that is, until I started talking to a mommy-friend of mine. She’s a much more thorough mom than I am, and I sometimes doubt my decisions after talking with her. And so came the topic of daycare and my mind started to race. In the end, I’m pretty sure it completed a marathon.

I started thinking about our first play-date last week. There were only two high chairs in the kitchen. How can she possibly feed four little people with only two high chairs. My son will not be the last one to eat. I refuse to have him sit there and wait while all the other kids have their lunch. Must talk to her about this.

Then I started thinking about how I didn’t remember opening a gate when I went into her backyard. I will not have my son play in an unfenced yard. That’s such a safety hazard. He’s going to run into the street and get hit by a car. I can’t believe she would open a daycare and not have a fenced yard. This is a make-it or break-it situation.

I also realized that with four little people, it will be impossible for her to go for walks in the summer with the kids. She said she would take them to the park. I want my son to go to the park. Obviously she’s completely unprepared.

At that point I realized how much of a bad mother I was – willing to drop my child off at this woman’s house, who doesn’t have enough high chairs, has a backyard that is a total safety concern and my son won’t go to the park. I spent the entire weekend thinking about how to approach these concerns with her. I’m sure she has a good answer for everything right? She’s going to buy more high chairs, she obviously removed the fence for the winter… right?

So I called A, spent some time just talking about stuff (didn’t want to come off too strong at first), and then I dove into it:

Me: So, I realized the other day that you only had two high chairs. Are you planning on getting more?

A: They’re in my basement. I just brought up one extra one when Thomas was here. But yes, I have enough high chairs for all the kids.

Me: (laughing awkwardly) Of course you do. That was a silly question. Please don’t take it personally.

A: No worries. I also have spoons, and bowls and bibs and everything else they’ll need to eat (ok, so she was mocking me a little).

Me: That’s good (heh, heh), ummm… I was also thinking how I didn’t open a gate when I went into your backyard the other day. Are you planning on having a fence installed in the early spring?

A: We have a fence, I just left the gate open so it would be easier for you to get through with Thomas (thoughtful).

Me: (laughing awkwardly AGAIN), Right. I guess I just didn’t realize it was there because I didn’t open. Heh, heh. I’m sure you’re ready to start taking care of these little ones. I’m sorry, my mind is just racing and I spent the entire weekend thinking about the fact that my child was going to eat lunch last and after lunch would head outside and run into the street.

A: (laughing at my neurotics) You know, I really thought things through. I have everything they’ll need: a playpen for each kid, their own little drawer where I’ll keep diapers, wipes, a change of clothes, a special blanket to sleep with if they need one. Basically anything that will make his time here pretty awesome. I also bought an outdoor wagon with four attachments so when we go to the park every kid will have his own little spot to sit – and it also has a belt buckle to keep them safe. (there was the answer to my third question.)

Now I felt like such an idiot. My going-back-to-work nerves are getting the best of me. No more marathon running for my mind. A is awesome and I’m happy we found her. Thomas is going to LOVE it there.

We ended the conversation with laughter. She reassured me that Thomas was such a pleasure to be around the other day that it balanced out my craziness. A few minutes after we hung up, I received an email. It simply said: Just to ease your mind…

No magical umbrella but…

This morning was our very first visit to a potential daycare for my little guy. Needless to say I was quite nervous on the way to check out the place. Although I had seen images online and liked the woman’s description, I kind of felt like the single girl who’s going on her first date with a guy she’s met via the internet. He might look good in the photo (taken 10 years back) and his place looks great (cause it’s his mom’s). I kept playing Brad Paisley‘s Online song in my head. Who know’s what we were about to walk into…

I must say we were pleasantly surprised. Although it’s a smaller home, it’s very cozy, clean and bright. The woman’s 3-year-old son was there and I was happy to see him play quietly on his own, but chatter when we spoke to him. He snuggled next to his mom when we all sat to play for a few minutes and I got the sense that she’s a really great mom.

She was very down to earth, was incredibly well prepared to answer all our questions and provided us with a clear outline of expectations, regulations and values. She was a great first.

Although we plan on visiting a few more places, we’ll now have a great base to compare them to. And who knows, maybe this place will turn into our high school sweetheart and we won’t need online dating.