Friday, December 04, 2009

Company for breakfast

This morning, BR and I were having breakfast, when all of a sudden I noticed some movement outside our kitchen window. I turned BR's high chair around so she would have a good view, ran to get the camera, and started snapping.

At first, you could barely see them:
Then a brave soul ventured a little closer:

Soon to be joined by a few friends:

BR couldn't stop laughing at their white tails :)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Shape-shifter would have been even better

"I am the photonics time-shifter" said the voice at the other end. I had been paged a few mornings ago (oh, the joys of a work pager), and I was returning the call. I've heard the expression before, but it never stops making me giggle. The idea is that we have people working with us offshore, with a time difference of almost 12 hours. So during our nighttime, they use our labs remotely. However, they sometimes need someone on-site to move cards around and such. This is the person known as "timeshifter", working on India time but in Ottawa.

I wish my title was half as cool!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Not the best week

So I've been having a bit of a crappy week. Just a combination of many factors, really, but mostly because the cold bug that BR and DH have been passing around to each other finally managed to catch up to me. So I've been coughing and sneezing and generally feeling miserable, but because of a super tight deadline at work I wasn't able to take any time off (in fact, I worked in the evening more times this week than all year so far). Luckily I seem to have mostly fought it off by now, so I'm hoping for a better weekend. In the meantime, I'm going to take a few minutes to vent here, so if you're not prepared to read through a bunch of grumpy drivel, feel free to skip the rest of this post. I'm hoping to come back with some more interesting content soon...

This week I took BR for her 18 month checkup visit at the doctor. It went mostly well, except for two minor annoyances. First, the doctor gave me a hard time for BR's eczema, suggesting I give her a bath in the Ave.eno oatmeal bath treatment twice a week "and it will all go away". This is the same advice she has been giving me since BR was born, and while it helps keep the skin moisturised, clearly, it doesn't make it go away. I use the bath treatments, I use super thick ointment, I am careful with soaps and detergents and everything... And overall, I do think her skin is doing ok, but it's certainly not perfect porcelain baby skin (which incidentally I had a chance to see last weekend - the 18 month old daughter of a friend of a friend has the most amazing delicate baby skin, enough to make me jealous!). So I get a little annoyed when our doctor seems to completely forget that BR has skin issues and treats it like something new that needs an "intervention", when I'm already doing everything I can think of to keep it under control.

The other thing that made me shake my head was the doctor asking us what kinds of TV shows BR watches. I was taken a little bit aback, as I didn't expect the question. It turns out she just wanted to distract BR with talk of her "favourite" characters, and was looking for some input from me (Do.ra? Sponge.bob?). But BR hasn't seen much TV, and so far seems pretty impervious to its influence - last weekend at the cottage with 4 other 18 month olds, when the kids would watch videos she would sneak into the toy area and play with the toys noone else was interested in anymore - she thought it was a hoot. Given that the AAP recommends no TV for kids under 2, I was quite surprised to have a physician ask about TV characters... Next time I'll be more prepared. After all, BR is very interested in animals, so an elephant would have been a good "character" to suggest in this case.

Once we got BRs appointment out of the way, DH had one the next day to discuss the results of his checkup a few weeks ago, as well as the biopsy of a growth that was cut out of his face last month. His checkup results were mostly ok, with some concern about high tri.glycerides (could cause heart disease) and generally being somewhat overweight. The biopsy results indicated it was basal cell carcinoma. DH feels that it's not a great surprise, what with his fair skin, many sunburns in his younger years, and family history of cancer. And after reading a bit about it, it's not that scary of a diagnosis - low risk of metastasis etc, but it's still not something you like to hear. From the looks of his nicely healing cut where the growth used to be, they got the whole thing, so he should be done with this one. He'll have to get checked regularly of course, and be even more diligent about sun exposure (is that even possible?), but it really looks like they caught it in time. Still, it's a bummer.

So that's pretty much the summary of my week. I think I'm still processing most of the stuff, doesn't all quite feel real yet. I guess that's what the weekend is for...

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Culinary corner

So, despite being busy as all get out, this week I had a few inspiring moments in the kitchen. Which makes me pretty happy. I like spending time in the kitchen, but I don't like having to spend time in the kitchen if I am not feeling like it. Some weeks it's easier than others...

First off there was the bacon wrapped asparagus, for the BBQ at a friends' place, inspired by the comments from other friends saying "why do we even need any veggies, our vegan friend cannot make it this time!". I have to say, despite my original reservations, the bacon wrapped asparagus was quite popular. The combination of flavours and textures was quite interesting. And it was very easy to make (wrap, fry, done!).

Then there was the last minute frittata I made for Friday's lunch. DH was originally supposed to have the day off, so my plan was going out for lunch with him ;) But plans changed at the last minute, so I had to improvise a lunch for us to take to work (we generally eat bigger, warm lunches and smaller suppers). I just threw together 4 eggs, a bunch of milk, a cup and a half of flour, 3 handfuls of spinach (leftovers), a handful or so of mushrooms, poured it into a pan that I had buttered and put some shredded cheese on the bottom. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes, and I have to say the result was yum. Mostly I think thanks to the freshness of the spinach, that gave the whole thing a juicy and fresh texture, but even DH enjoyed it (and he usually dislikes spinach and mushrooms).

Then on the weekend I made some yummy gazpacho (fresh veggies at the Farmer's Market). A nice way to round out the week :)

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

You know you're tired when...

...getting a root canal feels like an express trip to the spa :)

This is what I was thinking lying in the dentist's chair on Monday. Not really helping matters was the fact that the daycare asked me to pick up BR that morning because of diarrhea (I'll just have to take their word for it), so I had to get DH to come home to take care of her so I could make it to the dentist, and also figure out how I could manage to get my work done, since I had a deadline for that day. So it's really no surprise that getting to recline back in the chair and not being able to get anything "done" for the next 45 minutes, I felt like I was finally getting a chance to relax and get some me-time :)

But I'm not complaining. Wouldn't change my life for anything! Heck, we're even starting to get decent nights of sleep!

Friday, June 26, 2009


I must be getting older... Issues that seemed to be nice and clear cut before are starting to look all sorts of shades of gray. Even seemingly the simplest issues can cause controversy, and I am having trouble choosing a definite side...

As an example, take yesterday's news of the death of MJ. Now, I am far from being the world's biggest fan of the guy, I don't think I've ever even owned any of his albums, never made a point of listening to his music. Still, I have been known to hum along to "Smooth Criminal", or "Billie Jean". In most recent years, I've shaken my head many a times while hearing news items about the guy, not able to figure out what was fact and what was sensationalism. So much about him seemed truly bizarre, but then again, who knows what I would have behaved like if I had been a child star and a multi-gazillionaire, and had never gotten to know the more mundane side of life.

And yet he's touched so many people around the world. He had an undisputable musical talent, appreciated by young (and not so young) people all over the planet. And bringing people together is one of those things that are hard to quantify and even harder to force. Yet I do believe that we need more common ground like that (for example music, art, nature), to ease our transition into a healthier global planet. From that perspective, MJ has done more to unite the world than I could ever dream of accomplishing in 100 lifetimes.

On the other hand, is his death any more tragic than that of the thousands of people dying of preventable causes all around the globe every day? Children dying of hunger, war, genocide? Is it even something that can be compared? I like to believe that we are all equal in death, but is that really true? We do mourn the people we are familiar with a lot more than the quickly flashing faces on the nightly news. It is human nature I guess. In truth, most of us are probably not able to handle thinking every day about all the people dying unjustly - I know I'd probably be crumpled in a heap on the floor. So maybe in a way we use the deaths of celebrities as our vehicle for mourning? A chance to grapple with our own mortality, and the unfairness of life and the world and

Not sure where I am going with this. In truth, I am not really all that saddened or upset by the news, maybe just a little shocked. It just got me thinking about all of this peripheral stuff, and people's reactions and things...

Friday, June 12, 2009


It figures, of course as soon as I decide to try and start posting more often in here, BR decides to up and stop sleeping at night (ok, so maybe she didn't quite decide it, it's more like her teeth started bugging her, but you get the picture). It's been almost two weeks of multiple wakings per night, and trouble getting back to sleep. I've been walking around like a zombie. Luckily last night we seem to have turned around a corner: she only woke up once at 3:30, and pretty much put herself back to sleep.

All that to say I'm still trying to post more often, as long as circumstances allow for it.

So here's a quickie for today. It may be considered in the "too much information" category, but I think it's kind of funny (and when's the last time you've seen something funny on this blog?).

So I have this pair of underwear. Plain and simple, nothing unusual about it. The tag on it spells out the brand as St. Eve. Except it's in all caps. So pretty much every time I go to the bathroom when wearing this pair of underwear, I get to see the following text (in big, bold letters): ST.EVE. And either one of two things happens: either I start wondering why my underwear says Steve on it, or I don't pay enough attention and the word just seeps into my subconscious, and I am left wondering hours later why I have the name Steve on my mind. A less practical person would probably get rid of this pair of underwear, but I keep thinking there's nothing wrong with them... Well, except maybe for the induced neurosis.

Honestly, though, why would anyone put the name ST.EVE on women's intimate apparel? I'd like to know...

Friday, May 29, 2009

Road ramblings

So for the past week, the city has been "working" on our residential street. We live on a dirt road, so we're pretty used to the sight of dump trucks full of gravel and dust, and the grader and the spray trucks. We have learned to live with the clouds of dust and the rock chips on our vehicles.

But this week things were different. The machinery on our street was bigger and louder. They closed the street for two days (with no warning!), exactly during the week where we were still in daycare transition, and hence driving back and forth all day. I had to convince people again and again that I indeed lived on this street, and I indeed needed to get home. And after that, I had to negotiate huge rifts of dirt and rocks on the street, sometimes even putting my wheels halfway into the ditch to get around all the mess created... Fun!

Well, the worst part of it all, is that yesterday it started raining. I wouldn't say we've had any real downpours, just a fair amount of rain... Well, wouldn't you know it, our street has now turned into pure muck. Driving on it feels like you're driving through marbles, on a snowy-slushy surface. It pulls the car in all sorts of directions, even when driving at less than 20 km/h. It's insanely bad. In all of our years living at this place (coming up on 8 years soon), we've never seen it this bad. Really makes you wonder: what were they thinking!

DH got so incensed at having to put his precious car through this, sent a long winded complaint to our councillor - and got a bunch of replies! Two interesting things they told him:
  • we're on the list to get paved real soon (I'll believe it when I see it)
  • the re-dirting this week only cost the city $10K, which is not that much considering it costs almost half that to re-gravel our driveway... I guess you get what you pay for!

Thursday, May 28, 2009


I just finished reading a book called "The big Turnoff: Confessions of a TV-Addicted Mom Trying to Raise a TV-Free Kid". It's kind of an interesting perspective, as it was written by a true TV addict who in the process has freed herself from the addiction. The book really got me thinking, which I guess proves that it's worth a read.

So far our approach has been no TV for BR. We keep the TV off whenever she is awake. To be honest, this is only partly for her, and in a big part to allow me not to be distracted by the TV. Even though I think I have mostly gotten over my TV addiction, I still do find myself drawn to TV drivel wheneve it is on. It doesn't matter what's on, even the majority of commercials tend to capture my attention (which I guess they *are* designed to do). So my best bet to give BR as much of my attention as I can while also taking care of the house and meals etc, is to keep the TV off.

In the beginning, I think it was mostly about her. I didn't want to expose BR to TV as a baby, and wanted to keep my full attention on her, so throughout my maternity leave I managed to keep the TV off, with the exception of one day where I was sick and feverish and stayed on the couch all day. I think that really worked for both of us, as it allowed me to get more involved with BR, without the distracting background flicker, and it's meant that she doesn't really have any interest in the boob tube. We tried to show her the movie "Cars" once, or at least parts of it, and even though she is a huge fan of all vehicles, she was totally disinterested.

Reading this book has made me re-examine my reasons for turning the TV off when BR is awake, but also the reasons why it's quite often on after BR goes to sleep. The former is a little easier to explain: of course there's the studies, and the AAP recommendation to not expose children under 2 to TV. Personally, I don't think she would gain anything from watching TV at her age. She is pretty calm and quiet to begin with, she can spend 30 minutes looking through her books, so it's not like I would ever feel the need to "pacify" her with TV either. And let's not forget that I have not yet seen a TV program for young kids that I have actually liked. I think this is the one parenting choice I've felt no ambiguity over, although I still find it hard to admit to people that I'm keeping her away from TV, since it seems so ingrained in our society that "baby einstein" is the way to go...

Of course with all the reasons why TV is bad (and oh so addictive for me), I'd love to say we limit the adult's watching time as well. But the truth is we don't. Pretty much whenever BR is asleep, the TV comes on. Of course, when she's falling asleep, we're trying to be quiet to not disrupt her, so watching TV with captions on seems like the most considerate thing to do. DH reads at work all day, so he's not up for reading in the evening, so I watch mostly to keep him company. Or at least that's my excuse ;) Although lately I've also been bringing my laptop to the couch, so I can multitask, and maybe reduce the TV's power over me. Of course some may argue that that's only replacing one vice with another :) But a lot of my computer involvement is more active (like writing blogs, especially BRs), and end up producing something more tangible, which watching TV never does. So I guess I am making small baby steps toward freeing myself as well from the clutches of the addictive TV monster. But it's a slow process, and I'm starting to come to terms that we might never really be completely TV free.

One of the things I am striving for, though, is to never watch TV live. We watch pre-recorded shows (and skip commercials), and full seasons of shows that we find worthwhile. Our favourite one at the moment is "Dollhouse". This certainly limits the mindless channel surfing that used to eat away at my days and nights...

As BR gets older and stays up longer and longer, we will see how our resolve to keep the TV off fares. I am quite hopeful that we can keep it up. I am really looking forward to introducing her to all sorts of games, like Scrabble and SET, and hopefully that will be enough to keep our little family entertained in the evenings!

As with everything related to parenting, this is certainly a work in progress...

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Little things

Tonight I was making quesadillas for supper. BR was sitting in the living room playing. As soon as she heard the oven timer, she got up and ran across the kitchen babbling excitedly. She ran to her cupboard, dug around, and emerged triumphantly holding a bib in her hand. Somebody was definitely hungry!

(And in case anyone thinks the poor kid was starved, the daycare lady told me that the whole lunch was inhaled, and she also had two minigos and half a banana for her afternoon snack. We may have a growth spurt coming up!)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Picture post

Not posting much these days, mostly because of lack of time. I am hoping to start writing more, and figured there was nothing better to break the silence than a cute picture:

On Thursday, there were 3 little birds in the nest. Saturday morning, there were two of them. By the time I went and grabbed the camera, there was just this one lone cutie pie. After I was done taking pictures (all 2 of them), he also decided to jump out and fly away! It's a shame I didn't have the video camera :)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Moments in time

Just because I don't want to forget those little moments, I'm writing them up here... I've been doing a lot of document writing at work these days, so not feeling much like writing on my own time, but I really needed to capture these...


Last week, I was home with BR and decided to get her a little involved in some cooking-type activity. I was using my juice-maker to extract the juice from a bunch of assorted citruses, so I sat BR in her high chair next to me, with the composting bin on the floor under her feet. I would process a citrus half and hand her the spent peel, explaining that it goes in the bucket on the floor. After doing 3 or 4 of them, she got the hang of it, and started making the sign for "more" every time she was done with a peel. I had trouble keeping up with her! It's the first time she used the sign for "more" for anything other than food or drink. She's really becoming a big helper!


On choir night, I went to the door to get ready to leave, and BR followed me there. Seeing me get dressed, she headed for the shoe rack, grabbed her boots, and started handing them to me. Seeing that I wasn't going to collaborate, she started trying to put the boots on herself. The image of her all dressed up in her pyjamas, holding the boots and giving me a pleading look ("can I come with, pretty please") stayed with me all night. Unfortunately, she is starting to dislike having me leave for choir on Tuesday nights :( Fortunately, she still lets her Dad comfort her, and she does seem to forgive me in the end...


When we're coming home after a day of work and daycare, BR is usually quite calm, but she does get impatient sometimes when we're getting closer to home. So I've developed this routine when approximately 2 minutes from the house I put my fingers in the shape of bunny ears, and tell her there's only two minutes. Then at 1 minute, I just show her one finger hopping. She usually thinks this is hilarious, and it gets us home in a good mood. The other day, we were maybe halfway home, when I glanced back at BR in her car seat, and what do I see? She's staring intently at her hands, trying to do the bunny shape! She was quite tired and worn out that day, and I guess she wanted to speed up our arrival home :)

Sunday, January 18, 2009


I spent all of yesterday evening with a few fellow first-time Mothers of 1 year olds. Babies stayed at home with Dads and/or family, and we went out on the town. It was really nice to be able to hang out and chat, and I was quite surprised that only about half the conversation centered around the kids. Although a good chunk did revolve around the husbands and their involvement (or lack thereof) in all things household-ish.

But while it was nice to be able to sit there and chat and compare notes and just be able to eat and drink in peace (no, I don't really get to get out much), I was also quite surprised and saddened to realise that there was a lot of feelings of unfair work splitting between the spouses. As usual, it really seems to be a case of misplaced expectations. I mean, even if both spouses are planning to contribute 50/50, unless you explicitly discuss what that 50/50 means, there's bound to be some disappointments. For example if the mother nurses, meaning she takes care of the majority of the feedings (if not all), should the father take on more diaper changes? What is "fair", really?

As always when it comes to relationships, the answer is communication. Being able to express your wants/needs is the first step in making sure their met. Well, actually, the first step is probably figuring them out in the first place - that's probably the hardest part. Ideally, all that stuff can be sorted out before the baby comes into the picture, because once (s)he is here, time an patience are at much more of a premium, and long, quiet and composed discussions can become a thing of the past. Communicating in shorthand is usually all that can be afforded.

In our specific case, DH and I had spent a lot of time prior to BRs birth figuring out the split of responsibilities. Not because it was a hard one to figure out (me- take care of all things baby, DH- pitch in around the house, take care of cars, work and long-term planning), but because we wanted to make sure we were both comfortable with it. Because we knew it's hard to go back and renegotiate those things when sleep deprived, overwhelmed and overstressed.

Still, there are things that crop up now and then that threaten to topple our carefully built pyramid of domestic bliss :) In a society where the old divisions of labour no longer apply, and new divisions have to be negotiated for a true and fair partnership, sometimes you have to renegotiate. And sometimes that happens in the most inopportune times.

That's the train of thought I embarked upon after our long and therapeutic conversation. I mean really, who needs to sleep at midnight anyway?

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Cherry on top of the sundae

So after fighting with the car all morning, then hearing about the bankruptcy protection, I also found out last night that there is a recall for the crib that BR sleeps in. All in all, we can handle all of those small hurdles, but I sure hope that's it for bad news. I'm getting enough stress at work right now (completely unrelated to the filings, more related to coworkers), that it's at times hard to keep things in proper perspective...

On the good news front, we've now had 2-3 nights with BR only waking up once around 2 AM. Means I am starting to catch up on my sleep after a week of frequent wakings, taking care of a coughing baby all night (including sleeping with her resting half-vertical on my chest to drain the congestion for hours at a time). So maybe there is a light at the end of the tunnel?

I'm afraid this post makes me sound more down than I actually am. I have been a little stressed by the work stuff, car trouble and trying to somehow partition my time between work and family, but overall I am still enormously thankful for everything I have and determined to make it all work and not let real or perceived obstacles bring me down. Having BR in my life helps keep things in perspective, and I am much better about letting go of stresses and frustrations than I was before she came into this world.

Time to start working on updating my resume :)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Work news

My company officially filed for bankruptcy protection today. In a way, it doesn't really come as a shock, we've been hearing rumors and innuendos for a while now. But still, it was kind of nice to be able to stay in denial. Now it's official. Sucky thing is, they don't have to pay severances
for layoffs under bankruptcy protection. Also, I need to keep my job until April if I even want to dream about getting any employment insurance...

But in the meantime, there's still work to take care of, and customers who are waiting for stuff. So we go on slogging away....

Frozen comedy

It's cold today. In fact, it's very cold. Like -26 celsius, -39 with the windchill. Brrrr... Luckily, since we've been hearing the windchill and frostbite warnings for today all week, I somehow prepared mentally for it, and didn't find it too shocking when I walked out of the house this morning.

I bundled up BR nicely, bundled myself up, put some cream on our faces (she would not let me cover up her face at all), and we ventured out into the freezing cold. Got to the garage with some residual house warmth left, and I was feeling pretty good about getting to the daycare early for a change. I went to open the rear passenger door to put BR in her car seat, only to find out the door was frozen shut. So here I am, babe in hand, trying to wrestle the door open. No can do. I stood her up on the floor, leaning against my legs, and tried to pry the door open with both hands. Still no luck. I popped her into the front passenger seat, which worked well as she was so bundled up she couldn't really move around :) I went to start the car, which proved to be somewhat problematic as well, despite the fact that it had been plugged in (or maybe because of it). In the end, though, I convinced it to start.

I still had to figure out a way to get at least one of the back doors open, as it would be quite challenging to get myself and BR into the back seat without that. I ended up getting in through the trunk, and pushing the door out. You gotta wonder what BR was thinking this whole time about the crazy gymnastics Mum was engaging in. She has a lot of patience for my eccentricities :)

After all that, I figure the rest of the day has got to be easy as pie :)

Thursday, January 08, 2009

These are a few of my favourite things

In no particular order:

* BR having a big hearty belly laugh. When she's tired after a whole day of daycare, she tends to find most things I do completely hilarious. Funny noises, funny faces, funny voices or funny gestures, she's not picky. It's quite heartwarming!

* DH becoming all protective of our little family. When I was staying at home, he let me set the tone of everything that was going on around here. Now that we're both back to work, he seems to have found more of a voice, and has many opinions about the best things for us. I think it's great, because most of his opinions make a lot of sense (as much as it sometimes pains me to admit it).

* BR requesting to be put in bed by pointing to her crib when she's tired. I was really worried that she would fight us when it came to bedtime, but it seems like she only has good associations with her crib, and actually likes to spend time in there. In the morning, she plays quietly with her little turtle, waiting for us to get up, and most of the time we don't even know she's awake!

There's more, but I really need to go to bed and go to sleep. I'll have to add the rest another time.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

This kid is going to be a handful some day...

and that day is coming soon I fear...

It's no surprise to anyone who's met BR for even the briefest time, that she is an independent spirit. She's not much interested in cuddles or displays of affection, preferring solitaire exploration and discovery. She does not like to have books read to her, instead she insists on choosing the pages and pointing to what she is interested in (and you can then read it or tell her what she is pointing to). Since she's learned to crawl and especially walk with the help of Dad's hands and/or the couch, the ottoman and assorted other pieces of furniture, she will often get mad when I try to pick her up, because that is loss of control, and she will simply have none of it... And she generally refuses to come to you if you ask her, simply on principle. Even when I come to pick her up at daycare, she will only crawl over to me on her own terms, not if/when I ask her to.

And so I suppose I shouldn't have been surprised this morning, when I handed her a giftbag with a nice big book in it (thinking "she loves books, especially big ones, this one is the biggest yet, she's bound to just love it") and asked her to open it up, and she simply took a quick look at it and crawled away. It took until the evening for her to actually decide she was now ready to discover the contents of the bag.

Later on, I took her into the basement with me while I was refilling the pellet stove. I have a little kid chair and table setup for her there, so she can sit and watch me while I mill around. Unfortunately she has been figuring out how to stand on the chair and then crawl up onto the tabletop. It's not very high, but she could still get quite hurt if she fell onto the concrete floor. And so I sternly told her not to climb onto the table. The little monkey looked at me with a wide, happy grin, shook her head sideways (to signal "no"), and then climbed up some more, visibly delighted to be doing something she shouldn't be. I may have to start calling her CM for Cheeky Monkey instead of BR!

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Life changes

I just got a call from a "Private Number" here at work. While before BR (or BBR) it wouldn't have meant much of anything to me, today I found myself instantly wondering "Oh no! Is it the daycare? Someone from the daycare? Something is up with BR?". Turns out it was something totally mundane (a coworker calling from a cell), but I found it interesting to observe my immediate reaction. Being a parent changes you...

Monday, January 05, 2009

The first day of the rest of my life

Last night, after my family had left and we'd gotten the house cleaned up, it suddenly hit me: tomorrow we were going back to work and daycare. Intellectually, I knew it well, but I hadn't taken any time to think what it would mean to us and specifically to me. When I went back to work in December, it almost felt like a temporary thing, I knew it was only for a few weeks and then we would have almost two weeks off to spend together as a family.

And now the break is over, and it's back to work full time for both DH and myself, and daycare for BR. What a reality check! We're establishing a routine, a pattern, that will serve us for a long time to come, maybe until elementary school? High school? It seems like very serious business.

I guess what this really means is that the break was good. In fact, I'd even say the last week might have been the happiest week of my life. Not the most exciting or extravagant, but definitely the most peaceful and content. Spending my time with DH and BR felt so right, it's almost like we built a little cocoon for ourselves and nested all together.

Now, that's not to say it's all sunshine and roses, it's not like we all of a sudden see eye-to-eye on everything, it's not like there's no moments of frustration or disappointment. But I feel like we've come a long way in learning to deal with all those bumps in a way that's not damaging to BR, and it feels good to see we've made so much progress.

And the result just speaks for itself: BR is such a happy, spirited, independant and interactive kid, I love her more each day. I always enjoyed newborns and babies, and I knew I'd have a lot of fun with BR when she first joined us, but I find with time I'm enjoying her even more! She's such a little person now, growing in leaps and bounds every day!

Alright, better end this post before it gets overly mushy. Her birthday is just 2 days away now :)