Friday, December 31, 2010

Saying Good-Bye to a year that was...

my best ever. If you measure this year simply by the changes in my life... I am one lucky girl. In one year, I have been blessed with a wonderful husband, our first beautiful home in Toronto, and of course the birth of our incredibly happy and handsome (if I do say so) first child. Added to that, is the health and happiness of my family and friends, and all of the other beautiful children that have been born to those close to us. 2010 has been spectacular.  It's hard not to sit here amazed when I think back to all that has come to pass in one single year. It has been a big one. It has been a special one.... It has been one of my absolute favourites.  As I look toward the year ahead it's a different excitement, there are different expectations, there are different goals and challenges. Being a mom has changed me for the better. It has changed the two of us, into a family. A family I am so excited to see grow and change in the year ahead.

Happy New Year Everyone. All our love and best in 2011!


Photo Credit - Heather Lynch

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas Time is here...

What a wonderful holiday we have had! Aside from the cold that has made it's way through our house, we really have spent the entire month of December celebrating with lots of family and friends. It's been a wonderful first Christmas for our little family. So much love.   Our time here in the valley is winding to a beautiful close, and as we prepare to head back to Toronto on the 29th (and prepare for some new year celebrations), here are a few pictures from our first Christmas with Rory.

Happy New Year!

Shaughnessy Christmas!

Rory's Great Grandpa...

Christmas Eve...

Christmas Morning!
Rory LOVES his sleigh....

Rory's 2nd favourite gift... according to his mom. :)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Half a year....

To the day. Rory is 6 months old today. It's so hard to believe that 6 months has already gone by. But then I watch our little guy playing, and stare in awe of how much he has changed and developed since we brought him home. He really is his own little man now. And SUCH a happy baby... he has a smile and a laugh for everyone. This is the best age. Six month olds are a riot. But I am sure I will say that every month. :)

Rory 1 day old

Motherhood has really grown on me. I love being at home with Rory, and I am super excited for all our planned activities in the new year. But first... Christmas. We're leaving tonight for the valley. I can hardly stand the wait.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

xxx ooo

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Another handsome little playmate has arrived!

Our good friends Jessica and Andrew welcomed their handsome little Oliver this week! So many new playmates for Rory... AND Oliver is in Toronto (and another on the way)! Hooray! Being a mom just keeps getting better.

Look at this little fella... don't you just want to reach out and maybe bite his cheeks?! Just a little... :) I love him already.

I talked to Jessica tonight and she is doing amazing. AMAZING... and believe me when I tell you this girl was a TROOPER. If you know her, she can tell you the details. If you don't, you can just imagine. :)  

I heart new babies, makes me all teary eyed and Peter hopeful one day I will want to do it again.  ha.

Congratulations Jessica & Andrew! xoxoxo

Welcome to the world Ryder Sepp Oppacher!

One of my university besties gave birth to a beautiful bouncing baby boy very early on Tuesday morning. Get a load of this handsome little fella!

Ryder Sepp Oppacher entered the world at a healthy 8lbs and 3oz!  Look how precious he is!  And another little play-mate for Rory! We can't wait to meet this little guy over the Christmas holidays and give his mamma a big hug.

Congratulations Kristen and Yandu! He is perfect. xoxoxo

PS - more wonderful news of ANOTHER special delivery coming soon.... as soon as I feel like I have a green light to talk about it. :)

Monday, December 20, 2010

Sleep re-training.

I'll admit it, we've had it pretty easy. Rory is a good sleeper and he has been since he was 3 months old. He sleeps through the night and we've only had to work our way through a very light pattern of sleep training during the day, but other than that, we put Rory in his crib and he goes to sleep.

Then there was last night. And the night before. And perhaps the night before that. I honestly feel like I haven't slept in a week, and today will inevitably be one of those barely functioning days. I have so much to do. Why didn't I get the memo that this week is Christmas?

Ok, so here's the thing... this time, I think our current sleep issue is actually probably my fault. Can you create poor sleep associations in a week or two? I googled it, and apparently you can.

So Rory has been sick for almost 8 days (thankfully he is better now). A cold virus has slowly made it's way through our home and completely disrupted our month of December (which is why I still have so much to do).  And in an effort to save our sanity and navigate our way through family and friend holiday obligations with a sick baby, I have been doing a ton of stuff to sooth Rory that I had long ago abandoned.  

Things like...

- rocking Rory to sleep
- holding Rory while he sleeps
- letting Rory sleep on my chest
- night feeding Rory to get him to go back to sleep

And I am sure there is more. Eek...

I guess I never really thought I could totally change his sleeping habits in a week?  But I did, and I have. And it looks like sleep associations are just THAT easy to create. Here's hoping they're just THAT easy to get rid of or it's going to be a long week. We need to get this under control before we show our faces in Almonte because Gramma is sorta right wing on the sleep training debate. 

So I ask you moms out there in all honesty, is this what we're up against every time Rory has a cold, or a new tooth coming through?  What is a parent to do?  My instinct is to sooth them however I can, but if that disrupts their whole schedule from there on in is that the best decision?  

Here's to a sleepy and snowy Monday.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Merry Christmas Baby

Yesterday I got together with my mommy friends and babies to celebrate the season, exchange some cookies (my first cookie exchange ever) and take pictures of the babies in holiday clothes. Honestly, it was just a ridiculous amount of fun. And tears. These babies ALL simultaneously melted down in front of the Christmas tree... tis' the season! :) As they one by one toppled over , hitting heads, grabbing each others soothers, ripping at their uncomfortable outfits... we, their loving care givers, burst into almost hysterical laughter and agreed we really should have brought rum and eggnog. Next week.

Honestly, everything is different with a baby. EVERYTHING. And its times like these, the holidays, where you realize that everything being different, really means everything being extra special. Moments and memories that will last a lifetime.

Here are some highlights of the day. Look closely for the fresh tears on each on of their faces.
(From left to right - Beata, Emmett, Alexis, Ameila & Rory)

Rory wasn't impressed with much yesterday. 
Except with my baking contributions.... :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Baby Food Cooking Disaster

I could cry. Instead, I might just mix myself a rum and eggnog. I have gotten a major FAIL in my first attempt at making homemade food for Rory. Lesson learned. Be prepared and have the right equipment. Especially when freezing the ORGANIC food you have PAINSTAKENING prepared.


Pureed just right...

And lovingly divided...

Fresh organic peas, sweet potato, apple and pear.  Just yesterday I thought I was such a good mom preparing all of this late into my evening. Sadly, the peas and sweet potatoes did not freeze well in the ice-cube trays. They are freezer-burnt garbage.  :(

I need to call my sister and find out her secret to freezing food in ice-cube trays. I know it can be done.  In the meantime, I need some more of those fancy containers you see on the right. They did not let me down.


Hopefully my peanut butter cups turn out better. I am doing a cookie exchange with my mommy friends this Thursday. We're also dressing the babies up in holiday clothes! Hopefully Rory will be healthier by then.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Giving green things a chance

Today, we tried avocado. I don't know why I bothered, Rory has a bad cold (like trip to the doctor today type of cold). But whatever, it's mommy's entertainment to see what Rory loves and doesn't. According to my little calendar we were due to be introducing something new, so avocado it was (thanks for the suggestion Sarah P).

Here is the face I was given after the first spoonful Doesn't his face just scream "where is my banana"? Actually, maybe he's just saying "It would be nice to at least start with a clean bib mom".

A few more spoonfuls and a little of mommy acting the fool, I finally got somewhat of a smile.

Honestly, this solids thing is just too much fun. What sort of foods did you start your baby on?

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Starting Solids

After weeks of reading about it, talking with other about moms about it, and likely spending far too much time fretting over it, (mostly the amount of commitment and preparedness it would take)... we dove in and Rory is now starting to eat some sort of semblance of real food!

It was a bit of a rocky start with rice cereal. Rory REALLY did not like it. Or oats for that matter.

But from there we moved onto Barley and surprisingly he LOVED it. Peter said he wasn't surprised as Barley is the grain you make beer and whiskey out of. I guess he comes by his taste preferences honestly then.

Since then we have tried bananas... Rory thinks they are a magic taste elixir. It's like I am feeding him pure chocolate. Look at this delighted smile.

And just yesterday we tried sweet potato and it was greeted with the same smiles. I think this kid might have a natural sweet tooth.

Things these days are just too much fun! This is a great age.

Thanks Gramma and Grumpa for my new high chair. I love sitting up in it like a big boy!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Does July feel far away?

Some days yes... especially with Christmas and with all this snow everyone is getting.  But then I think about the  5 1/2 months that have already passed by on my mat leave, and I know in a blink of an eye the warmer weather will approach and this Mamma will be heading back to work. Tear. :(   

In April of last year (when I was 7 months pregnant), I wrote about going back to work. At the time, Peter and I were
looking at day cares in Toronto. Sadly,  we learned that you actually need to be on wait lists here VERY early if you want to get into good care facilities, or actually to get into one at all. I remember being totally overwhelmed by the idea of going back to work before I even had a baby, and also at what we should be looking and asking about when touring care facilities.  I believe I put us on 9 waiting lists. Isn't that ridiculous?  Some of which I was told we were early with our name, others I was told we were late... "what were you doing when you were 4 months pregnant - come on?". I kid you not.

Through my mommy network I am happy to report that we officially have care set up for next summer! YAY! Huge sigh of relief. It's a fantastic spot, in our neighborhood and the best part is that because it isn't city run, there is a SIGNIFICANT savings a month for us. Peter and I have both toured the daycare (which is actually in a older house), and met the care staff most who are early child year specialists or nurses. The best part is that we know some of the other parents/and Rory will know some of the other kids when we start transitioning him in late June. Having this set up and behind us is the best Christmas present. I can just settle in for the winter and really enjoy these last 6 1/2 months with a little guy that gets more fun by the day.  There seriously is a business opportunity here though, finding childcare just should not be this stressful. Regardless of what city you live in.

So now that child care registration is behind us, onto more xmas decorating!  

Rory's first Christmas has us all feeling extra festive this year! 

Rory loves Christmas. And drooling.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Dear Santa.

all I want for Christmas is something to eat besides rice cereal, because I HATE it!