it’s great to be ONE!

kids’ birthdays are fun. this weekend we had a very small and intimate party for lion as he turned the big ONE. we had a picnic outside at a park, by a river, in the sunshine. it was a great day spent with family celebrating lion’s first year filled with games and various shenanigans.

bear is our family’s birthday cake designer and assistant baker. he decided a long time ago that he wants a triangle cake for his 4th birthday (in february) and that lion should have a circle cake for his 1st birthday. from the circle cake idea we morffed into cupcakes with loads of candy on top! yum!

lion was showered with fantastic presents from his grandparents, auntie K and uncle L, and of course his lovely parents (wink), which he seemed quite delighted with. as did his big brother!

we made a celebratory birthday poster. bear and lion went wild colouring and stickering; so great to live with two artists!
traditional goofy family photo op.

xo, mama lola

the birth of a lion: revisited

lion was born on the 8th of july in 2010. it was a thursday and it was bloody hot. we chose his birthday as he had to be born via c-section due to my pituitary gland tumour. it was supposed to be routine and nothing was supposed to happen, but mistakes were made and we almost lost our little lion. 
i continue to struggle with his birth and often wonder if we were proactive enough. perhaps we should have asked more questions, demanded second or third opinions, but in the haze of my own recovery i remember feeling powerless and bullied.

he was born at a highly specialized hospital with various specialists and a high risk obstetrician in the operating room. i had to be put under, because a spinal, which is usually given to c-section mums, presented its own risks for my unusual situation. i remember walking into that cold, grey room. people were talking and helping me onto the table and all i could think of was that my little guy would be born alone. i would be out cold and dear hubby was not allowed into the room. i was sobbing so hard tears were streaming into my ears, but i couldn’t wipe them away as i was to lay still while they poked me with needles and monitors. 

they tried to reassure me, but my guilt was all encompassing. 
mother’s guilt.

my fucking tumour. in my fucking head. on my fucking gland. 
this was all my fucking fault.

lion was a surprise breach, which meant they couldn’t get him out as quickly as they wanted to, which meant he received too much of the general anaesthetic, which meant his vitals crashed. he was cut from my body and literally someone ran with him out of the operating room to another room, while trying to resuscitate him. dear hubby was witness to this, as he was waiting outside our OR. 

as the next few days came and went, i felt it necessary to put on an act of sanity, togetherness and composure, but inside i was flailing. on one hand i was trying to recover from my own surgery and deal with the obstacles it presented. and on the other, i was trying to deal with a baby i wasn’t allowed to hold or touch, who couldn’t breathe on his own and needed constant medical intervention. while all of this was happening at the hospital, my darling two year old bear was desperately struggling with all of this stress and anxiety. 

we were all a mess.


today, one year after the fact we have come a long way baby! our lion fought hard that first week and has since been a happy, thriving baby. he has never stopped smiling and the joy he exudes is inspiring. we are so very lucky to have a beautiful, healthy lion in our family. 

i don’t know if i will ever truly “get over” the details of his birth and shed the guilt i have carried thus far. revisiting his birth day has brought back waves of emotions, but really, it is what it is and there isn’t anything i can do about it now. i am in awe of him and his brother, bear, and feel lucky to be their äiti.


xo, mama lola

we sang o’ canada countless times on friday.

canada day.
canada. hungary. anthems. music. noon. bourbon. tradition. food. trampoline. bacon. hot dogs. muffins. fire. conversation. beer. friends. hammock. trees. family. love. laughter. blue skies. sunshine. baseball. hats. smiles. 

family. friends. traditions. swimming. splashing. playing. burning building. cabin. sunsets. sleep. water. loons. naps.  chipmunks. forest. trees. pine cones. sticks. waves. boats. canoeing. books. newspapers. conrad black. conversations. tears. memories. history. rock. beer. wine. shandies. food. bbq. deer. flowers. flashlights. walking. advice. raccoons. lost glasses. 
and then we’ll do it all again next year!

xo, mama lola

river side picnic and lobster tag.

dear hubby and i hit the road on our bikes, with the kids in the chariot and headed to the river. it’s only about a 5 minute bike ride away. i had packed a picnic lunch and we biked until we found the perfect spot for eating and then some exploring. 

lion was tired and had a lovely park nap, while bear horsed around expending serious amounts of energy!

here’s a game of lobster tag at its best. bear is the lobster and is chasing dear hubby all over the playground. it’s a fun game and after lion woke up from his nap, the lobster came after him as well!

i love the chariot and think it’s the best BIG money we have spent in a while. it’s so light and easy and the kids are great in it. our town has increased the number of bike lanes, which makes me feel a bit safer cruising around. 


xo, mama lola

treeplanting, it’s in our blood.

as many of you know, dear hubby and i met and fell madly in love up north in the woods while working as treeplanters. this weekend we were able to pass the legacy on and teach bear a little bit about trees and how to plant them.

it all started a few months ago when the kids at bear’s pre-school received some seeds from a local nursery and planted them. after watering and caring for them, the seeds grew into tiny seedlings that the kids were quite proud of.

it’s all thanks to a this amazing local program that reforests parks, schools and even private homes for free. it’s funded through tax dollars and is quite a unique program run by volunteers.

the kids got their picture taken by a photographer from community paper. here’s an example of the kinda silly faces the kids were putting on. two questions a) why can’t kids smile naturally? b) why does bear not even look at me when i’m trying to take his picture, never mind smile/ grimace? i get his picture by chance usually!!!

 there was situation with a bee, but lil’C (in the curls and hair band) took control of the situation and told everyone to stand back. 

happy days ahead! 
go plant a tree!

xo, mama lola

children of the forest.

we spent a wonderful weekend up at the cottage with some special friends. friends we haven’t seen in about two years as they live on the other side of the pond, in germany. 

we had time to chat and catch up on the important stuff, but also had time to just be together. the kids had an especially wonderful time together playing, running, reading and getting to know one another. 

the cottage is the perfect setting for all this catching up. there are few distractions, no internet or tv. instead there is plenty of nature to stimulate the senses.


there are also some funky, home made toys at the cottage, like this red wheel thinga-ma-doo-der (see pics below) that dear hubby’s grandfather made for him back in the day. it was touching to watch bear run and laugh, just as his dad had done many years before!

we frolicked in the water splashing and laughing, ran amongst the tall hemlocks, climbed over fallen trees and branches while looking for treasures and kept an eye out for the black bears. 

the bugs were almost non-existant, although looking at lion’s wee head that would be hard to believe. he has bizarre bumps and lumps all over his head from the darn mosquitoes!

i know this all sounds too perfect and as though i’ve sugar coated the whole weekend, but really, it was perfect. 

the muskokas have a reputation for being the playground of the rich and famous, but as you can see it’s also fun for the less rich and you certainly don’t have to be famous to enjoy its beauty.

even the kids were mostly smiles and giggles; there were only a few tears and only tiny tantrums, which for one 2.5 year old and one 3.5 year old is pretty amazing. they just wanted to play together and that is what they did!

bear is going to miss his new, lovely, lady friend. 

happy rest of the week everyone!
xo, mama lola

ode to the hammock.

there is a sad day looming in the horizon for our family. a very sad day indeed. soon we will be taking lion’s wonderful hammock down from its strong, trusted hook in the heart of our home. this simple beauty has been hanging in our living room since lion’s birth in early july 2010 and now that he is almost one he is just getting too big for it.

tiny lion only weeks old here is almost swallowed by the hammock.
while still pregnant, i was concerned about bringing a tiny, vulnerable newborn home and not having anywhere for him to sleep that was safe and out of reach of his older brother and the dog. we didn’t own a crib or a pack ‘n play and had no intention of getting either of those items, so when this hammock was recommended to us by dear, dear friends it made complete sense to get it. it fit well with our small home and our parenting style. My friend also enjoys having an adult sized hammock in their their living room they got from somewhere similar to JUST Hammocks maybe that is something I might look into at some point judging from how comfy my little one looks in their hammock.
lion at about a month old.

when lion is placed into the hammock he is always fast asleep. he snuggles into the soft organic cotton, while life continues around him, whether it is playing of games, DVD’s watched in the living room or dinner prep in the kitchen. we wanted to teach our kids how to sleep while activity was milling around them and it has worked.

a cozy nap spot, while bear watches DVD’s on the laptop.
it is a soft, comfortable, cozy place where lion can close his eyes and sleep away any worries. he has clocked hundreds of hours in the cozy hammock. i have always felt that he was completely safe in it, but i know many look at it with scepticism and concern, and because it is high up off the floor some assume baby can fall out. but, there are three separate clips to strap baby in that hold a squirmy lion when he wakes up crying.
i want to leave you with this amazing picture of another mama’s baby in her hammock.

sweet dreams…

xo, mama lola

sunday was party day!

yesterday, sunday, was party day for us. we hit two birthday do’s and lived to tell the tale!
the first party was a kiddo party for lil’miss C who turned the big 4. bear had a fantastic time in his own quiet, shy way. there were a lot of kids there he didn’t know or remember, so considering, he had a blast. then it was off to grandpa E’s birthday.

check out horatio’s V-tongue!
playin’ with auntie K’s turtle puzzle and empties.
lion LOVES dogs.
this was a family do with lots of chatter, beer and laughter. the food was great and the strawberry cheesecake was fantastic [props to dear hubby for baking it]. 
lion sleeping on the couch before dinner was even served.
a birthday “ta-daa” for grandpa E; thanks for teaching everyone bear!
birthday cake with sparklers.

as we were leaving an incredible thunder and lightning storm rolled in and dumped buckets of rain on us. 

i caught a bolt of lighting!!!!!!!!

p.s. bear got a new hair do on saturday.

xo, mama lola

meet tallulah.

about 12 years ago i was selling soap at LUSH in the big city. the job was great and i made some wonderful friends [props to sun], but as a poor twenty-something living on my own it was tough to pay for rent, booze and public transit. so, my mom bought me a bike from crappy tire. this supercycle and i spent years clocking gazillions of kilometres together. i named her betsy. i eventually spray painted her bright blue and added a basket decorated with dollar store flowers. but, unfortunately all good things must come to an end and it is now time to bid adieu to betsy. she rode well, but in her final years her brakes just stopped working, as did the gears and it seemed silly to invest money into her. plus, she weighs about 100lbs!
today is the start of a new era. meet tallulah, my beautiful new bike with a shiny white seat and gears built into the handles. she’s a perfect lady’s bicycle for someone like myself who likes to wear dresses and skirts. 

we went to crappy tire to get me another supercycle, but as we perused the bike aisle, that’s when i saw her. tallulah, sitting all pretty like with her pretty white paint and dainty curves; the opposite of the cheapo super with harsh angles. dear hubby saw how smitten i was with tallulah and told me that’s what we were getting. 
sweet hubby.
sweet bike.
bear told me i looked good sitting tall on tallulah! oh, that little cub knows how to sweet talk me!

can’t wait to start using tallulah and the chariot together. i’m hoping to hit the parks and trails with the boys this summer and this is such a fun way to do it!

there’s the chariot, tallulah and myself going for our first neighbourhood cruise.
heading to the park. lion was not impressed with being stuck next to bear,
so dear hubby carried him in the ergo!

xo, mama lola
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...