my kids are so different.

i am coming to some big realizations about who my kids are and how i parent them.

my oldest, bear, is an anxious kid. he has struggled with his anxiety for as long as i can remember. because, he is my first borne, i didn’t realize that what he was presenting was in fact anxiety, i just thought all kids had epic meltdowns around new things. People have been recommending that I try sabaidee cbd oil for him, as it has been shown to be effective in lessening anxiety symptoms. It’s definitely something I’ll have to do more research into. My heart aches for him, for me; i wish i had known then what i know now. things could have been so much easier and less stressful for all of us. when bear was 3.5 years i sent him to morning gymnastics camp with a friend from preschool. he screamed, cried and was a mess when I dropped him off at the gymnastics training center, while his friend was eager to join the fun and learn some tricks. at another camp that same summer, his screaming was even louder and his grasp around my leg was even stronger, but still i just left him. everyone around me told me it was just separation anxiety and that it was normal. even though nobody else’s kid was having the same severe reaction to being dropped off. (and to clarify, i don’t blame anyone for saying this, it just was what everyone thought at the time : 20/20 hindsight is so clear.)

since that summer, i have stopped pushing him, and only sign him up for things that he specifically asks for.

we have tried slowly transitioning him into things, but that doesn’t always help either. or, not that it doesn’t help, but it often backfires eventually. it has gotten so bad in the past that I have found myself looking into the xanax price, but I think I will speak to a doctor about it and leave it as a last resort. it’s really hard to mother a child with anxiety, because i know people judge and blame me; especially since i am a bit of a worrier myself. i am the easy scapegoat, as all mother’s (and parents) are.

but, here’s the thing, my second borne, lion now 3.5 yrs has no sign of anxiety. he is definitely sensitive child, but when he gets nervous in new situations his behaviour is never as extreme as his brother’s. but, he is not anxious. on his first day of preschool he skipped away into his classroom with a huge smile n his face. he just started swimming lessons and happily went into the pool alone with his instructor, put his face in the water and blew bubbles. there were NO tears, no thigh clinging and no verbalization that he was scared. as i watched him this passed monday in the pool, i was overcome with relief and ridiculous amounts of pride. relief, because he was calm and willing to try something new, even though he was a bit unsure. within minutes of his lesson he was fearless, listening to instructions and clearly feeling pretty proud of himself. as he should.

i should add, that bear started Tennis Lessons the following day, and he too was brave and didn’t cry at all. but, leading up to the lessons my stomach was in knots on fear of his transitin into this new extracurricular activity.

all of this to say that as a mum to two very different kids, i have to remind myself that they will probably always respond quite differently to new things in life. they will transition into hobbies, school grades, summer camps and whatever else in their own individual ways. they will both need my love and nurturing, but clearly even at this young age they are expressing their needs differently. i must become more cognisant of their differences in our daily lives; pushing lion more and pushing bear less.

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i am still learning on how to become a good mum. i am work in progress.

what are some of your challenges in mothering/ parenting? share in the comments.

xo, mama lola

nobody listens to me.

i am experiencing some mama-rage and need to vent…

so, i think my family is somehow confused, because when i speak, instead of pausing whatever it is they are doing, they walk away, talk over me, start another conversation with another member of our family, start singing, fall asleep, or just blatantly ignore me. the continued lack of listening is starting to really wear me down. i mean sure, not everything i say is interesting or funny, but maybe if i wasn’t always repeating myself a hundred million times a day, then i’d have time and the brain capacity to be hilarious, ya know? every day my kids and i go through the same motions when getting ready for school. every day the volume increases at the same points and every morning i list off the things they have to get done; brush teeth, get your boots on, get your backpack, stop fighting with you brother…

this astounds me, i mean c’mon, how is this my life?

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i am not quite the mother i always dreamed i would be. but, in my own defense, my kids aren’t quite the way i had fantasized either. in all honesty, in my pre-mothering days, i thought my kids would be better at listening to me, but to my utter dismay, i am a mama who has to raise her voice in order to see results happen around this house. and let me clarify, it’s not as though i raise my voice and say “get your outside stuff on” and then the kids do it. no, no, i have to crank the volume of my voice and hit repeat; i say the same $hit to them over and over again, until i feel like i am going to explode. it seems to only be getting wore with age… gah!!!

and, my sweet DH? well, some days he’s not any better…

please, PUH-lease tell me i am not alone in this…

xo, mama lola

halloween fun!

we had a fantastic halloween this year! the kids were so psyched and everything seemed to fall into place perfectly!

lion decided he wanted to be a robot. so, he and i made him a simple costume out of a some vent-tube stuff from home depot, a cardboard box, a cereal box, spray paint, and various odds n’ ends we found at home. he loved his costume and i was so pleased with the way it turned out. 

bear wanted to be an astronaut. i had seen on pinterest several posts about how to make the jet pack out of empty pop bottles, but i wasn’t really sure how the rest of his costume was going to look like. but, thanks to a quick trip to the local thrift shop at the end of a dae night,  it too came together swimmingly! we found a super shiny vest and short set, which were perfect!



the boys had their own halloween parties at their school’s. that meant i had to do some creative back-n-forth driving to participate in both, but it all worked out, and i was so happy to join the fun!

after dinner it was time for the main event to get started : TRICK OR TREATING! with their boots on and their thrift store pum’kin buckets in hand, we headed on out. 

it was a dark and stormy night… no, for real. the downpour was ghastly, but making it worse was the incredible winds! i was holding onto the brolly with all my might and still it tried to fli inside out on me! but, the kids didn’t even notice that they were getting soggy!

once back home in our warm home, we all quickly changed into our pajama’s, made some tea and then checked out the mountain of candy. the kids received an enormous amount! maybe people were extra generous due to the weather, or maybe t’s cu they were just so darn cute, but whatever the reason the boys were delighted!

 


how was your halloween?

xo, mama lola

dinosaur galore kit : a product review!

my boys have been obsessed with dinosaurs since the beginning of summer. they have devoured over books at the library, learning all about the different kinds of reptiles that once roamed our planet millions of years ago. they have drawn their own dinosaurs, built dinosaurs out of lego, and played a variety of imaginary dinosaur games.

so, when kelly at  two kids cooking & more contacted me to do a review of their kids painting kits, i was delighted to see the dinosaur option! but, if your kids are interested in other things there lots of other kits to choose from, check them out HERE


then one day we received a package in the mail and as soon the kids ripped it open, it was time to start painting! the dinosaur galore kit includes 4 wooden dinosaurs, which the boys divided among each other. my 3yo lion picked up a dinosaur and said “this is a triceratops”, so sweet! the other kinds of dinosaurs include a t-rex, a stegosaurus and brachiasaurus. (i had to ask my kids to list them, i cannot tell dinosausrs apart! haha!)

the kit came in a sweet burlap bag, with instructions, googly eyes, lots of paint and paint brushes! we laid down plastic on the kitchen floor and the kids got busy. the instructions recommend painting one side at a time, so that’s what we did.


look how cute everything in these photo’s are!



we let the paint dry and then got to work on the other side, and then the details. 


these dinosaurs are a fantastic craft, but once they are done they are the perfect size for playing with. my kids have created all sorts of games in imaginary worlds with their dino’s! they are so reasonably priced and kelly was so helpful with all of my questions! 

i love supporting small business, especially as we head into the holiday season! these painting kits would make a wonderful, unique gift for any budding artist OR you could gift the final product to a friend, cousin or doting grandma!


(i received this dinosaur galore kit as a gift from two kids cooking & more, but the views expressed are my own.)

xo, mama lola

i can finally exhale.

my mothering is changing pace. the boys are growing so quickly, which means their needs and my time can be used differently.



i have been slowly, but carefully purging, purging, purging through our things. i have wiped away many tears as i have sorted through several large tote bins of baby items, deciding what to sell, what to pass along and what to keep. the toys are easy to get rid of. the clothes, not so much. i know exactly where to sell them – craigslist, ebay, depop etc – and there’s even a depop automation tool to help get faster sales on that particular platform – but it’s the memories associated with those clothes that’s making me so emotional to even think about letting them go.

it takes a while to purge, as i look at the clothes, hold them, touch them to my cheek, remembering each of my boys wearing these tiny sleepers and onesies so many moons ago. it is so hard to remember accurately those hazy, baby days. and, i think that’s how it’s supposed to be, because although there are so many wonderful moments of firsts and unbearable cuteness, the sleepless nights, bouts of teething and gas issues, the awful bum rashes and epic amounts of laundry i did in those days, was quite simply exhausting. and, quite frankly not worth remembering.

my days felt never ending, long and often quite lonely.


and, then all of a sudden we were out of baby-hood and in the throws of kid-hood. we are done with teething and diapering, never to have to endure those constant sleepless nights with a fussy baby, taking turns pacing and me trying to breastfeed in those dark, quiet hours of the night again.
i did try to drink up the time with my babies; i would stare at the details of their tinyness; the folds of skin, the eye lashes that went on forever and the fingers that gripped mine so tightly. i tried to enjoy the quiet moments, even if they were short lived.

our awesome bumbleride queen B stroller is still sitting in the basement. i am so unsure what to do with it. we used the heck out of, especially when bear was little. i love that stroller and was so pleased with it’s purchase. i didn’t drive when bear was born, so this stroller got us everywhere safely and efficiently. i called it my SUV, because it has four large rubber tires chosen to help navigate through the snowy winters of canada. now, all the strollers have them, but 6 years ago we paid a lot of money for those big ol’ tires! I do remember all of the stress that came with looking and buying a stroller like this though. It took us ages to find one that would fit our needs, especially the need of being able to travel to different places without having a lot of hassle. We came across this joovy double stroller that we loved! But then we realized we wouldn’t be having twins so we had to reevaluate our choices. That double stroller looked really good though as you could detach car seats from them, so it would’ve been brilliant had we needed to travel anywhere by transport. Eventually, though, we feel in love with the one we picked, so I’ll be sad when the time comes that we won’t need to use it anymore.


we also done with slings, wraps and other carriers. i spent hours and hours of my life carrying someone on my side, front or back! my body ached at the end of the day, but again, i am glad i endured.



it feels as though we have survived and conquered the first stage of parenting. i am proud of the parenting choices we made. especially the co-sleeping, cloth diapering and extending breastfeeding. although, in hind-sight i think i should have allowed myself some more leeway considering i had a tumour in my head and then eventually had to recover from that surgery. but, my beliefs were so strong about the kind of parent i wanted to be, that veering away from them felt selfish. those early years are so brief and short lived, that i couldn’t say “oh, when i am feeling more energized i will breastfeed more”.

today, i have a three year old and five year old. my kids are doing awesome and i am finally feeling as though we have found peace at our house. the boys have transitioned into the new school/ pre-school routine so smoothly, which is kind of unheard of at our house. and, because my worry for them has decreased i have been able to think about myself more. which, is empowering and wonderful!

i can finally exhale from those tense, busy, exhausting baby days and get ready for mothering these early childhood days, which i’m sure will be just as exhausting, just different!

aaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

what stage are you at in your mothering/ parenting?

xo, mama lola

this moment.

as inspired by souleMama; one photo from our week, no words, only an image to sum up our time as a family. one that captures a moment in time and is a visual reminder of where we were at this time in our lives. 

tuesday was…
first day of SK for bear.
first day of preschool for lion.





i would love it if you left a link to your { this moment }. 

xo, mama lola

wind tubes craft!

here is a fun, simple and creative craft project for kids. my 5 YO was happy to do most of the work himself, which was great!


materials:
  • tube like containers like toilet paper rolls, yoghurt containers, etc
  • various colours of tissue paper
  • duct tape & string
  • scissors, glue, markers, stickers, paper, sparkles

instructions:
  • glue toilet paper rolls together
  • decorate the outside of the tube; use your imagination and get creative!
  • cut tissue paper into strips (about 2cm’s wide)
  • cut the end off a container that has a bottom. cover sharp edge with duct tape, if necessary
  • glue tissue paper strips to one end of tubes. this will be the bottom of the wind tube
  • make three holes at the opposite end of the tissue paper and tie string through them. this is the top and tie the three string together at the ends, so that the wind tube can be hung

we hung our finished wind tubes outside on our front porch and watched the wind make them dance! the kids were super impressed and felt pretty proud. they were able to do so much of this craft on their own!

do you think this craft project is something your kids might be interested in?

xo, mama lola

bear is a bear.

we’ve been going through a super tough patch with bear, and yes again. so there’s the whole potty mouth thing that i blogged about earlier (read about it HERE), that is still happening, but now instead of everything being poo, everything is stupid. 
oh, great!

“my family is stupid, you are all stupid”

and recently bedtime has become a huge battle. 
we’ve actually relaxed this summer a bit with the hopes that that would shift his negative (stupid) attitude. but,unfortunately no go. he kicks, shifts, tosses and sometimes even shouts, which is a huge problem as the boys share a room. we’ve tried letting him read a little on his own in our room after stories, so that he doesn’t bug lion. we’ve allowed him to just lay in our room and try to fall asleep there, we’ve changed times, tones, tunes… yes, i have gone back to singing my sleepy repertoire i sang to him so many years ago: “eternal flame” bangles, “let it be” the beatles, and “hey jude, the beatles. 

i’m just not understanding where this rude, blatantly disrespectful behaviour is all coming from. yes, he’s 5 years old and pushing the boundaries, but c’mon he is ONLY 5 years old and calling his family stupid. all the time. really?

when i call him on it he giggles and laughs. which i try to ignore, but it really gets under my skin and makes my blood boil even more! ya know?! i try to keep my cool and set the example, but i feel like i am going in circles with him. i repeat myself a million times a day and hate the sound of my own voice and…. 


blargh.
during the road trip there were some very trying moments with him, but road tripping is stressful, so we tried to be forgiving.  but, now back at home, with a month until school starts i am hoping he will grow out of this rude phase and express himself more softly. he’s just so mean. i’ve told him if he doesn’t have anything nice to say, to not bother saying anything at all!

my upset is exaggerated, when i hear my three year old lion saying the same mean things, but he understands less about being mean intentionally.

here’s hoping this last stretch of summer is filled with more kindness!
fingers crossed!

xo, mama lola

summer beach day in kincardine.

if you have never been to kincardine, ontario, you should try to make it a destination for a day trip or longer vacation. we try to visit kincardine once a summer, which is a tradition that started way before we ever had kids.


the beaches are amazing. on one side of the main pier it is sandy and soft, the other it is rocky and pebbly. the waves that crash the shores are always cool as the water in lake huron never gets too warm!

the main strip in town has a variety of stores and chip stands, so there’s yummy grub for all! we left home in a hurry that morning, and i forgot to pack the kids’ bathing suits (duh! slaps palm to forehead) sowe had to stop at a box store to buy new bathers for the kids! haha! 


the kids love kincardine. it is small and during the busiest of times, it was still pretty calm. there is enough to keep them busy and happy for the day. even dear hubby got to work on his new thing, his strength training. which is lots of jumping without a running start. he’s getting pretty good at it!


we played at the different beaches, ate picnics on the different beaches, found a playground with lots of other kids for the boys to play with, we drove around the town a little so lion could nap and bear could have some quiet. we left just before sunset.


it was a completely nearly perfect day.
you see lion sh#t in his brand new swim trunks at one point! hence the naked bum. it’s all good, these things happen even on the best of days!
haha!

these are my instagram pics.
to follow me there CLICK HERE!


can’t wait to do it all over again next summer!

xo, mama lola

this moment.

as inspired by souleMama; one photo from our week, no words, only an image to sum up our time as a family. one that captures a moment in time and is a visual reminder of where we were at this time in our lives. 

we have all officially survived bear’s first year of school. 
here are a few pictures from his last day with his best bud and his awesome teacher’s! we love them all so much! 
woohoo, summer!!!



i would love it if you left a link to your { this moment }. 

xo, mama lola
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