The Lost Dummy

Well after 2 years of Elise having a nummy (her word for her pacifier) we have decided to help her let it go.  Last Friday afternoon when we got home, we took the one out of the car that she was sucking on and I got Elise to throw it into the rubbish bin outside.  It took quite a bit of coaxing but it was achieved without any tears or tantrums.

After that initial easy task I thought the rest would be a breeze.  How wrong was I.  Friday night there was a few tears and it took quite a while to go to sleep.  Eventually I sat beside her so I could soothe her but I expected that so I was semi prepared.

Then Saturday night we had a friend and his daughter over for dinner.  Elise played and laughed and all was well.  We decided that it was time for a shower and then bed.  Elise was quite excited but we got her ready.  As soon as we entered her room she started asking for the dummy.  I repeatedly told her that she threw it out and that there was no others (oh the lies you tell to your kids).  There were tears and lots of getting in and out of bed!  I’m not sure how long it took but eventually she fell asleep with me next to her with a hand placed on her back.

What should I have expected? I mean, she’s had a dummy in her mouth the last 2 years every time she has gone to sleep.  We had dummy’s hidden throughout the entire house.  Now she has to relearn how to go to sleep without it.  A fear grew inside me.  She’s going to have to relearn how to settle herself to go to sleep.  I’ve also lost that extra tool, the motivator, briber and soother.

So every time we go anywhere in the car she asks for her lost friend, her nummy, also when she’s upset, ‘nummy?’ and lastly when it’s nap/bed time.  It’s like talking to someone with a short term memory problem.  I inform her again and again that unfortunately honey we threw it out, do you remember?

Well today is Monday.  She’s just down for her nap after a morning of helping me tidy up after the weekend shenanigans.   Today was better.  Today I didn’t have to place my hand on her back until she feel asleep.  I just had to sit on the floor beside the bed.  I’m sure that tomorrow will be better again, maybe I’ll make it to the door.

Would I do it again?  Of course, it was worth it in my eyes.


My idea of a GREAT weekend

The weekend just been has been what I now consider a fabulous weekend.  When I was younger, a big weekend partying with friends was what I considered fun but how that has changed.  Don’t get me wrong, I still like to let my hair down but it’s just different now I suppose.

So you ask what did I get up to this weekend. Well Friday night entailed a few drinks with my husband and a bit of a laugh after putting our daughter to bed, who was an angel.  She did cry at around 5am but that was due to her being wet through and totally understandable.  She did go back to sleep however and in her own bed until 6.30 I might add.

Saturday I went to the chiropractor, and then into the shop.  We don’t own a clothes dryer so I went to the local laundromat to actually dry our sheets and towels as the weather we have been having is pretty wet and wild lately.  I had forgotten how nice towels feel after coming out of the dryer, so warm and fluffy.  It is one of the snall joys in life and I just wanted to snuggle into them.  After shutting shop we headed to the mall where I brought a new pair of jeans.

Saturday night I had dinner, a few drinks and a little gambling with some girlfriends.  I have to say there is so much to be said about having a good laugh and chat with some decent down to earth people.

Sunday was a pretty lazy day.  We didn’t get out of bed until 8ish.  Elise was cuddled in bed with us, watching cartoons on my phone for about an hour as we dozed.  Justin made us ham and cheese croissants for breakfast.  Midday Elise had a swim lesson with her Dad.  We took Bonnie to the local park and played fetch with her as Elise ran around.  Dad took Elise to Repco and I went to Spotlight childless where I wandered and eventually brought some pretty paper and washi tape.

Now I don’t know what it is about paper but I love it and as I don’t have much time I use stickers and tape in my planner to make my planner pretty to quench my need for paper crafts.  I do plan however to get into scrapbooking as I have done one class and enjoyed it so much.  So over the coming months I plan to slowly work at getting into it.

Now Sunday night is here.  I’m typing this in bed.  Justin is tinkling with his car in the garage, Bonnie is lying at my feet and Elise is tucked up asleep in bed.  I can hear rain outside but I’m warm and dry.  I even have my bamboo diffuser going with a relaxation essence.

So that weekend was perfect as it was relaxing and a weekend that everyone got something out of it but I’m praying that I’m wrong about one thing.

On the way home today I stopped at the shops to grab a few bits and pieces for dinner.  We made ourselves a steak sandwich.  Now Justin believed it smelled a little different but we thought it must have been the marinade on it as the use by date was about 5 days away.  As we both were coming to the end of our sandwich we bite into a horrible tasting piece of steak pretty much at the exact same time.  We both thought it tasted as if it was off.  We threw out what was left but if it was off the damage has been done.  We are now praying that we are not up in the middle of the night.

Wish us luck as I don’t want my lovely weekend to end badly!

My struggle to lose my Baby fat

I have always struggled a bit with my weight but after having Elise I struggled to lose my baby fat.  Then the most stressful period of my life came up and I put on more weight.  Elise was 18 months old and I was approximately 86kg.  It may not seem a high figure for some people but considering I’m 163cm tall (on a good day) I can’t carry much weight.  I felt humongous and depressed.

From January 2017 to June 2017 I lost 10kg and this is my journey going forward.  I’m hoping to lost another 10kg to be around 66kg.  The first 10kg was easy but I’m guessing the next 10 not so much.  I haven’t weighed myself for a wee while but I believe in not looking at the weight on the scales as much as judging my weight loss by the clothes I’m wearing or fit as I have an array from size 8 to 18.  Currently I have a pretty little dress I want to get into for summer.

To be thin isn’t my main aspiration.  To feel good about myself and have more energy for my daughter is.  I don’t want summer to hit and not be happy about my body so don’t do all the things I want to do with my little girl.

Now if you know my husband, he likes his treats.  Unluckily for me that means there’s always sweets such as ice cream in the house and he’s always keen for me to do some baking.  He also loves having a big dinner as quite often he’s busy at work and doesn’t stop to eat so by the end of the day is STARVED.

My Sister-in-law and Mother-in-law both have done yummy mummy and had huge success (the SIL has lost over 30kg).  I was trying to do a mediatteran diet recently but have struggled with it for some reason.  I also find I hibernate in the winter and crave ‘comfort’ food.

I have done the Dukan diet previously and I am going to try to do it again.  I am a carbohydrate lover – I love bread, potatoes and pasta with a passion.  I also need something that works with my husband.  The Dukan is basically protein and vegetables and you can slowly introduce carbs back in as you progress but not too many.  I have lived with this diet for a substantial time (pre baby) and found it very sustainable but that was when I was working away (FIFO) and it’s very easy to cut the crap when it’s not as readily available.

I am putting it out there to help hold myself accountable.  Turning down that treat or getting out of bed to go for a run is easier when I know I’ll be writing about it again in maybe 3 months.  They say it takes at least 66 days to form a habit.  I started today with the food aspect so tomorrow the jog/run starts, couch to 5km here I come.

I have a few girlfriends that have things that work for them such as a raw food diet, another that does Juice Plus, a gym junkie plus a few other bits and bobs.  What do other people do and find works for them?

This picture with my hubby is my inspiration!

Thin Debs

Is my toddler too friendly to strangers?

My little girl recently had her second birthday.  She is a happy, outgoing child who likes to interact with others.  The more she is learning to communicate, it appears the more she wants to chat to people.  Her wanting attention actually started quite young (before she could talk) and she would wave at people with a big smile as we walked by (she was usually in her stroller) and get grumpy when she was ignored.  Sometimes she would wave or make noises continually until she got somebody’s attention.

She is friendly with other children, which I don’t mind at all, it’s the adults that worry me.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m always right there with her and she seems to target friendly women, as I guess they notice her and take the time with her, but it worries me nevertheless.  As it’s not just the chat or games she plays, she also goes in for a cuddle.  The women all seem to love the attention she pays to them (as most have teenagers  or grown children and miss the cuteness of that age).

Just last week as I was picking up my Mum from the airport, we were sitting side by side when a lovely lady sat down next to us.  She had a little chat with Elise and held out her arms, and Elise basically jumped straight up for a cuddle and a song.  The lady chatted to me as she played with my laughing daughter and explained she had 2 teenage daughters herself (and to make the most of Elise now).  I immensely enjoyed watching how much joy Elise seemed to bring this lady.

Sometimes I feel it’s a fine line I’m walking as I’m judging people’s reactions also, as not all people want a little kid jostling to get their attention or annoying them.  When I think she’s in this category I apologise and then try to distract her or move her away from the person.   I don’t consider her a nuisance but I have friends who don’t particularly like or know what to do with small children (my husband being in this category though he’s improved after having our own).

I listen to the news on the radio and it seems like every other week a child goes missing or someone is caught trying to abduct a child.  I can see how easily it could happen, especially if we have another child.  Elise can sometimes be so fast, or I could become distracted by the dog or chatting to someone.  Elise also thinks it’s a game to run away (she loves to be chased and will shout ‘you can’t catch me’).

Does anyone else have a child like this?   Do you have any tips on stopping the chase games or the hugging of strangers?  I don’t want to try to stop her from chatting with people, I just wish to try to tone it down a little bit.

I have no doubt she will grow out of this, and of course I will miss my friendly little girl so until then I guess I’ll continue to watch her closely and let her have some free rein to meet new people and bring smiles to people’s faces but I’ll direct her the best I can and we’ll work on stranger danger as she continues to blossom.

A Mindful Saturday?

Well it’s Saturday afternoon and I’m sitting at the dining room table.  The table has boxes, bags and even some cut down pipe on it.  Elise is sitting across from me with her note pad and a pencil writing me a story.  I have a moment’s peace and decided to use it writing rather than carrying on with the job I started last night.

I’m currently trying to empty my garage and fit everything I put in there whilst trying to sell our house (I de cluttered), back  into the house and re organise as I go.  Justin (the hubby) has brought his project, a car, home and it’s got the garage space.  I moved the boxes into the house and organised our bathroom and tidied our bedroom and that’s my morning.

Currently all I seem to do is work either doing house chores, trying to do my projects (like finish Elise’s toy kitchen), do some projects for work or go to the shop (work).  Nothing is really for my satisfaction but I suppose that’s the joys of being a Mother and being so time poor.  I mean if I’ve got 5 minutes I’d much prefer to do something for myself but I know how much Elise loves doing anything with me and I love to make her laugh.

So I am trying to find fulfillment in the everyday tasks.  I haven’t started my gratitude journal yet but I’m working on being more mindful in my day-to-day living.

To me mindfulness is the simple act of being present in the moment and enjoying the moments for what they are.  I started to feel that I was waiting for my real life to start and it would after the current hurdle but then another hurdle pops up out of nowhere and the cycle repeats.

A while back I did a workshop at Kikki K for mindfulness and I really enjoyed it.  I also really enjoy watching TED talks on You Tube and they have a wide variety of short talks.

A TED talk I enjoyed about mindfulness is one that addresses the benefits of mindfulness and how we shame ourselves and the negative self talk we have (which I can strongly relate to), it’s called What we practice grows stronger  Another TED talk I enjoyed was why aren’t we teaching mindfulness and it talks about the benefits as well but it’s focused at teenagers and talks more about regulating emotions and improving focus.  A third talk I enjoyed is called Don’t try to be mindful and the speaker talks about how to start being more mindful just by noticing everyday feelings (good or bad).

So with that I’m going to enjoy the rest of my coffee and then I’ll focus on Elise and try to be present in the moment with her (not thinking about the boxes I still have to put away).

Don't just

New babies & new puppies: Pros & Cons

People told Justin (my hubby) and me that we were crazy but we decided to get a new puppy just before my due date and as it turns out, 4 days after collecting our beautiful new puppy Bonnie, my daughter decided she would like to arrive a week early on my Dad’s birthday.

We got a blue English Staffordshire Bull Terrier.  Some of our family had reservations as they had heard of Staffy’s having anger issues and attacking dogs and children.  We have never had any issues but I’ve meet one or two that were agressive.  It is known that Staffy’s can be bad with other dogs, that is if they are not socialised well at a young age.  I guess every dog is different and I know quite a few other dogs (different breeds) that are agressive.  Staffy’s are also referred as Nanny dogs as they are great with kids but I still recommend always supervising the two together as my toddler does not know personal space/limits when it comes to our dog and Bonnie gets excited with other children and tends to jump up which can scare children (and their parents).

I highly recommend attending a puppy class.  You may not do alot with the puppy in the first class but it’s a great start and excellent way to start socialising your puppy in a controlled environment.  We did a few classes and we definately believe it made a difference but if I had spent more one on one time with Bonnie I think she would have been an excellently trained dog.  It’s also good to get out as a family.  My husband and I took turns with the dog training while the other watched from the sidelines with our daughter.

Bonnie with tyre

Bonnie is like me and accident prone or has some very dumb moments.  I also therefore highly recommend pet insurance.  Ask about it at the puppy class or people with dogs.  For us it’s been worth every penny.  Bonnie has been poisoned, had a grass seed disappear in her eye, been xrayed (where we discovered she has an enlarged heart), spayed and trips justs to get her checked over by a professional.  I looked online and found a vet with good reviews and I have to say it makes a huge difference when a vet is passionate and geniunely cares about your fur baby.

Elise (the toddler) is still learning how to treat a dog properly and requires good supervision.  Elise pats Bonnie a touch too hard, pulls her tail, her ears, tries to drag her around, ride her, walk her on the lead, draw on her, feed her, tease her and put her in a cage, where she climbs in beside her.  Bonnie is excellent though and once she’s had enough she gets up and walks away.  Elise however has pulled a friends dogs tail.  He was an old boy, not use to children and we were lucky he didn’t bite but he did growl and scare us all.  I don’t believe that it was his fault though, I should have been watching Elise more closely and I am trying to distill in her how to treat animals.

Bonnie watching over Baby Elise

I also highly recommend setting down ground rules that all the household agrees and don’t give an inch as once the puppy arrives you soften alot, well we did.  Then it’s really hard to enforce the rules.

I can’t imagine our home without our fur baby now.  Sure she can do my head in sometimes but it’s worth it, especially the way the two are growing together and how much my daughter loves her.

What makes a GREAT Mum?

What do I know about being a good Mum?  I was awkward with friends and families kids, never knew what to do with babies and made bad choices purchasing kids presents.

What I think I know, I picked from my watching all the wonderful Mums I’ve met throughout my life. Also, depending on when you ask me (and how honest I am with you) you might find I think I’m doing a terrible job.  I believe that every Mother goes through this and really, it’s a sign that you’re a great Mum as you care so much for your child and what’s best for them, that is all anyone can ask for.

How do we learn about being a great Mum?  It starts at home. Think of what you liked and disliked about your upbringing. When I look back on my childhood I feel quite privileged. I always knew I was loved and my Mum was involved in our daily lives.

I can’t leave out what I’ve learned from the Dads out there too. I know so many great Fathers, Grandfathers, Uncles and Brothers. My hubby has an amazing way of sweeping in and making us fall into a giggling pile and not taking life too seriously.

There will be accidents to learn from. I know when Elise was little I screwed up. I made myself a coffee, put it down, turned around and she tipped it on herself. I immediately threw her in the shower and called for help. Elise was screaming in the cold shower and I was panicked. The ambulance turned up and we got a ride to the hospital. She fell asleep on the way there. It turned out she was screaming as I was panicked and she was cold.  The ‘burn’ was no worse than a slight sun burn but I was so angry at myself for days.

Making a plan for my day helps immensely as I know what I want or need to accomplish. There are days where the plan all falls into place and you feel pulled together followed by days where there is an accidental poop on the floor in the kitchen corner behind the rubbish bin to deal with and you forget you had 2 appointments (this happened last week to me).

A lot of patience is required especially now my little one is a toddler and has her own time frame. The more I push her, the more she normally pushes back.  I am working on how I phrase requests for her as sometimes just my tone or how I ask something deteremines whether or not she obliges such as making a game out of getting dressed in the morning or singing a song while getting her on the potty.

At some point (I can’t remember exactly when) I felt like I lost myself or my identity.  I was only a Mother and a wife, I no longer felt like my own person or self or did anything purely for me.  It’s taken me time away from my little one but I feel like I didn’t lose myself anymore, I have just added some layers.

Drop the guilt.  This is one I struggle with.  I judge myself quite strongly.  I’m working on focusing on making the best decisions purely based on our families unique circumstances and sure I listen to others advice but they don’t walk in my shoes and no two children are the same.

We don’t learn Motherhood skills from the media. A lot of what I see on the TV or social media is what I think of as ‘the face’.  Sure there are a lot of happy times but there is sad/tired/fat/depressed days too. Especially when a little one has been sick or teething or you are just trying to figure out what is going on as nothing is working.  If you can acknowledge that fact it then can also become a great place for advice, tips and ideas especially at 2am in the morning.   I know it was nice when I was breast feeding at some wee hour in the morning next to my sleeping husband to get on Facebook and see another Mum from my Mothers Group on there or get in contact with family in NZ as there is a 4 or 5 hour time difference.

Lastly some of being a Mother is gut instinct and comes naturally but if it doesn’t or you’re struggling, ask for help.  There is support out there, you just have to keep searching for what works for you.   Don’t focus on whats going wrong, focus instead on what you are doing right.  My toddler is healthy, full of energy, curious but most importantly happy, what else can I ask for?

Other Blog Posts that I’ve written: