a hoop-la life.

well, i’m in love.
she’s got a sparkle to her like no one else i know and blazing streaks of colour that just make you want to move. 
let me introduce my new hoop. her name is razzy (i think). we are, as some may say, attached at the hip.

this is the trick i am working on. simple enough. i have exactly a week to master it.


i’ll also be practising this one…



it’s a start. the only way i will succeed is if i set goals, realistic goals that is. i’ve joined the local hooping group and will hopefully meet up weekly to share in the hoop-la-life fun!


i need a name for my hoop. 
i was considering razzy. hmm… not sure though.
any suggestions?

xo, mama lola

lion had pneumonia.

i didn’t want to write about this when we got the shocking pneumonia diagnosis, because i was worried it would jinx things. pneumonia in a two year old is scary. super scary. especially when it’s your own kid.

it all started with a cough. lion got a cold, or that’s what we thought it was, from his brother, who keeps bringing various germs home from school. last monday, lion and i were running some errands and he had this deep, cough that sounded, um, different, for a lack of a proper descriptive word. he just kept coughing and coughing, so i decided to book it home earlier for lunch and his afternoon nap. 

i was lying with my littlest guy as he was falling asleep and that’s when i heard it. a wheezing from his lungs. and that’s when i noticed his breathing was quicker and seemed to be a struggle. my gut told me to call the family doctor and we got in immediately. our doc took one look at his chest and sent us for chest x-rays, which confirmed the pneumonia suspicion. my heart sank when we got the call at home, because a pneumonia diagnosis is scary. people die from complications related to pneumonia! but, luckily for us we caught it super early, thanks to my mommy-instincts, as my doc put it and got him the care he needed.

have you ever taken a two year old for chest x-rays? well, see the image below, that’s what it looked like. except, picture my lion in that plastic tube, naked wearing  just his diaper with his legs dangling, and me holding lions hands up and him screaming. 
oh, it was just awful. so heartbreaking.

[ source ]

fortunately, we live in the first world and got antibiotics into his little body quickly. that icky pink stuff was like magic and by the next morning he already looked better. not healthy, just better. and now, a week later he is back to his old self! 

bear was quite sympathetic towards his sick brother. he put on his big brother boots and was generous when it mattered. seeing the boys be affectionate and loving towards each other is quite touching.



now, everyone is back to good health! fingers crossed it stays that way!
HAPPY HUMP DAY!

xo, mama lola

an anatomy chat.

* FYI & warning: this post is full of language used to describe various body parts. the words are used accurately.
……………….

i love capturing little conversations i hear at our house…
here’s one that could be heard after bath one evening between bear and dear hubby.

bear: why do i need balls and a penis?
DH: they have two purposes, for peeing and making babies.
bear: making babies? how do they do that?
DH: well, it’s a long and complicated answer, and i will tell you another time.
bear: oh, ok.

the whole thing makes me giggle.

we’re very open and honest with the kids about the human body; what it does, why it does it and so on. unfortunately, dear hubby experienced a serious brain fart for the correct term for balls (which is scrotum just in case you are wondering), and so things were left at that. typically we try to be accurate, so as to avoid embarrassment later on. i would be mortified if my kids called their penises “wee wee’s”! I will admit though, this is the basic anatomy I draw the line at as I feel for the rest of it, I would need to research and probably prepare more than the regular anatomy chats. Thank goodness I have boys is all I can say! Much more simple to explain!

the words for private parts don’t just roll off our tongues, but even still i think it’s important to be accurate. and, in case your wondering about what a vagina versus a vulva is, read this. most of us are incorrect with our language for the female genitalia, without even knowing it!

we thought that by being clear and concise with our language now, we will avoid further confusion or embarrassment when the really tricky conversations about sex, sexuality and love arise. me and the hubby have both stated that we won’t go over overtly sexually topics such as Dildos or the various sexual dynamics one can find within a relationship, the basics is hard enough and they’re not needing to learn about any of that at all! also… saying, vulva or scrotum without blushing in front of your teenager has got to be a tricky thing! although, maybe it’s ok to blush in front of your kids when talking about this stuff, because maybe it humanizes it… i dunno, not there yet with my kids! what do you think?


what kind of language do you use to describe the anatomy with your family?


xo, mama lola

giving thanks & a fall fair.

today was the most glorious day. the morning started with frost on the ground and crispness in the air that lingered longer than expected. it was the perfect day to head out on a thanksgiving morning to a local fall fair and have a spontaneous play date with wonderful friends.


it is moments like these where i feel my heart swelling with love and gratitude.

i am thankful for my beautiful children. they are my life.
i am thankful for my dear husband. he is gentle, loving and very cute!
i am thankful for my family and friends, and the love they give.
i am thankful for my health. it ain’t perfect, but i’ve come a long way, baby!

i am thankful for our community. it is a beautiful network of families and neighbours.
i am thankful for our home. sweet peppermint patty keeps us safe, warm and cozy, when it matters most.



i am thankful.



i am very thankful to all of you for your continued support with this blog.
i am thankful for my new readers, returning readers and the comments many of you leave. and hey, don’t forget to check out bear & lion on facebook!


HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO YOU ALL!
xo, mama lola


xo, mama lola

holy hoopin’ hoopla!

i went to the funnest event yesterday evening with some super funky, interesting and sassy ladies.
i went HOOLA-HOOPING!!! 
there is a small local group that has decided to get together weekly (or so) to practise moves and share tricks. and when i say tricks, oh my! tricks include using your neck or something cooler grabbing the hoop while in motion, keeping it in motion and moving it up above your head and then back down. if your curious, you tube is your best research partner!




it was such fun, fun, fun. some of the women have been doing it for a long time, so they have learned to manipulate their bodies in the most awesome ways to control the hoop. it was kinda unbelievable! it’s a new activity that is becoming more popular as an easy way to get exercise without stressing your body (the way running does). 

i ordered myself a beginners hoop and am going get my body grooving with it soon! hoops come on all sorts of sizes, weights and colours depending on your taste and ability. bigger means easier to hoop, smaller means you have to exert yourself that much more and faster. those little green ones are speedy! 
and look at all the colours! love!
have you ever tried it?
let me know if you’re interested too, i now know where the hook ups are!

happy hooping everyone!


xo, mama lola

october is brain tumour awareness month.

this is a cause close to my heart and my brain. i was diagnosed with a pituitary gland tumour three years ago and had it surgically removed two years ago, this november. to read about how and why it complicated our life go here and here.

even though my tumour was non-malignant, and i am perfectly healthy now (at least in that regard), i feel obligated to spread the word about brain tumours. they are more common than most people think, and with advancements in the medical and technological world, recovery rates are better than ever. it’s all about listening to your body, having a good doctor to relay concerns to and knowing the signs and symptoms of brain tumours.

please spread the word!

HAPPY MONDAY!


xo, mama lola

little fishes.

bear started swimming lessons last week and it was a huge hit!


i have wanted to get him signed up for a long time, but wanted him to be old enough so that he could be independently in the pool. having a little brother, meant things got a little delayed, as i was never keen on leaving lion in the childminding at the local YMCA. so, this september was it. we signed him up and bear was thrilled. he never expressed any fear or apprehension, instead he has always sounded very proud at the idea of going swimming. to make the lessons more fun, his bestie is going with him. 


last week was the first lesson. i was very surprised at bear’s enthusiasm, as we have had such struggles in the past with him participating alone in camps or other activities. his anxiety surrounding separation and transitions is difficult to predict, and as he gets older some things are becoming easier for him.

he goes swimming on a weekday morning, while his peers are at school. it’s a perfect way to fill the morning, without going to school. lion and i get to sit on the benches on the side and watch. we clap and cheer as the boys splash their way though the water.


mrT and bear are the only two kids in the group, so it’s as though their having private lessons. the direct attention from their instructor is priceless, as she swims with them in the pool, directing them into the deep end, catching them as they jump in and giving them all the guidance and confidence they need.

here’s hoping this weeks morning lesson goes as smoothly as last weeks, as these two adorable fishies are so fortunate to have these lessons without any other kids in the group.

xo, mama lola

layers of yummy.

don’t you just love smoothies? i’ve been on a bit of a smoothie kick as it’s a great breakfast boost for the kids and the perfect way to get that needed protein into them. especially now that bear is in JK all day! I’ve even gone out and purchased the Best Juicer I could find to create delicious glasses of goodness.

i check the fridge for various fruits bits, veggie chunks and other possible smoothie ingredients. i chuck what i can find into my container and blend away (i just use my immersion hand-held blender). i always make sure i put in flax oil, tofu, unsweetened organic almond milk and some kind of fruit. often i use banana’s, berries, or left over fruit salad chunks. sometimes, i’ll throw in a dollop of plain organic yoghurt or a splash of organic whole cow’s milk. when i was on my cleanse i was encouraged to make smoothies with spinach, so i now i put in big handfuls of the fresh organic green stuff. once i had no spinach so i threw in some kale. the spinach is tasteless when mixed in, but provides awesome nutrition. this smoothie pictured below also has ground flax seeds in it.


i don’t measure anything when making smoothies. i add until i like the colour, consistency or taste. i only use about a 1/4 cup of flax oil and one heaping table spoon of the ground flax seeds.

have fun! enjoy!

do you have favourite smoothie flavour?


xo, mama lola

bob marley wants to know if i’m satisfied.

today’s NaBloPoMo prompt is from bob marley’s song exodus: 

“open your eyes, look within. are you satisfied with the life you’re living


love bob.

so, am i satisfied with the life i am living? in all honesty there is no one answer to this question.  over all, i love my life. are there things i would change? of course. are there things i would never change? absolutely.
and, what is satisfaction exactly? this source says it’s fulfillment and a quality of being. if i look closely at my life, i can honestly say that i am fulfilled in some aspects of my life, but not all. my mothering and nurturing role is one that i am proud of and it fulfills me in a way nothing else does. my children fill me with such love, pride and joy. i drink up their smiles and laughter, and i try to remember those faces during times of difficulty and turmoil. i love being a mama and know that this is the job i am supposed to be doing.

but, i do feel as though the intellectual, curious side of me gets neglected and is therefore unfulfilled. as an adult i loved going to school and learning. i loved working in my field at a women’s shelter. i have always enjoyed challenging and pushing myself into new, unknown territories whether through education, travel or work. or all three combined. that part of my life has been placed on hold temporarily. my plan is to go back and finish my women’s studies degree. but after lion was born and i had my tumour removed, i felt it was time to take time away from school. i did pursue my studies when bear was a baby, and i do see myself returning, but not at this time. not just yet. but, soon. 

when i was younger and fantasized about my life it had all the major players i have now. a husband,  a couple of kids, a house, a car, but as a kid i never fantasized beyond the materialistic side of life. i didn’t know how and i suppose i was too immature to understand how important that emotional satisfaction is. 
sometimes i do feel emotional unfulfilled and dissatisfied. being a SAHM is what i want to be doing, but it comes with it’s own set of cons. i am always repeating myself, wiping faces, wiping a lot of bums, i am always wiping counters, rinsing dishes, folding laundry, driving to somewhere, pushing swings, dumping sand out of shoes, reminding of manners, reminding the boys not hit each other, not to push each other, not to tattle, to think outside the box, and so and so. it’s very UNstimulating for my brain.
that sometimes leaves me feeling sad. overwhelmed. lonely. stupid. limited. unmotivated. isolated.

[ a random beach on the south shore of nova scotia. ]


at the end of the day for me, my satisfaction comes from finding a balance between all of the aspects of my life. when i am in balance, i feel good and satisfied with my life. 
i feel fulfilled. 
when i step off the line and lose my balance, i feel bad about myself and that negativity is felt by my kids and dear hubby.

i strive for balance.
every day that is my goal.

xo, mama lola

my body is screaming at me.

My left knee has been hurting all day. I put my brace on for extra support, but i know i need more than that. I’ve had knee issues for a while, and they stem back to treeplanting over a decade ago. But, after two pregnancies, two births, carrying my kids, breastfeeding them and all that other stuff that mama’s do for their kids, my body is screaming for attention. And it’s LOUD! And yes, my knee pain is connected to breastfeeding, as all your muscles are somehow joined to each other, as are your nerves. I’ve been hunched over for so long, tightening my shoulders, by back, which has now travelled down to my knee. The knee pain is not new and comes and goes. A friend recommended that to treat the symptoms of my knee pain, I should consider a CBD vape. She then suggested I visit this website to find a vape pen that I could use often so I would have regular pain relief. When starting yoga because of the tightness of my entire body at this point, it was painful to get started. So some CBD could help change that. Now when I get to the Y and yoga regularly it feels better. One of my friends who suffers from knee pain has also recommended this knee compression brace from Amazon to me and I must admit, I’m tempted to give it a try.

[ bear (6.5 months) and i in finland, after we got my finnish citizenship in order. even though i was born there and my mama is a finn, i only held canadian citizenship until 2008. the law was such at the time of my birth, that the child took the father’s citizenship. i was so happy on this afternoon in september 2008 to finally be a finn! now, i can travel with my finnish EU-passport! ]


i went to a highly recommended chiropractor in town, who basically told me that the left side of my body is more messed than my right, but who are we kidding, my whole spine area is a huge ball of messed up mess!
when bear was a baby i carried him in a sling, but was pretty good at switching sides. when lion was a baby, i only carried him on one side. sure, i used the ergo and eventually carried him on my back, but i’ve always been a sling mama, and now that my babies are no longer babies i am really feeling that pain and paying the price of all of that one sided carrying!
my chiro was so kind and reassured me that although my initial scans weren’t great, they weren’t horrific either, and that there is lots of potential to get my body to where it should be. she also sent me for x-rays, as a precaution, especially after my pituitary gland tumour history. her and i will discuss those images on friday.

[ the dudes and i at hillside, 2011 ]


i feel like this year, i have slowly started to harness back some control of my body again. i lost it to my kids years ago and then my tumour, but now i am slowly finding ways to really nurture it again. i was going to the gym regularly in the winter and spring, but completely fell off the wagon in the summer. now, i am ready to get back into that routine as well.

my body is screaming for attention, and finally, i feel like i can give it what it needs.
finally!

how’s your self care?

xo, mama lola
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