Monday, December 20, 2010

Days 14 - 17.... Wow, I'm Terrible At This

Okay, let's play a little more catch-up:

Day 14 - a photo of a person you'd love to trade places with for a day

A 2 year old has it pretty sweet. Someone pays attention to you all day long, you're encouraged to take the longest naps possible, people generally think you're cute even when you're being a stinker, somebody makes your meals and cleans up the majority of your messes, and your parents try to make you happy just to hear your giggle. How great is that? Of course, if you're this particular 2 year old, you're also learning about what you can and can't do, learning how to share, still dealing with teeth coming in, and your world is about to get rocked again by the arrival of yet another sibling. So while it would be fun, it would also be a good reminder for Mommy that she's only two, no matter how grown-up she seems somedays.

Day 15 - a photo of yourself and a new friend you met this year

This year I met a ton of new people and we've become really good friends. Like, drop-your-kids-off-at-the-spur-of-the-moment and who-cares-how-messy-the-house-is kind of friends. So how is it possible I don't have any pictures of us together? I direct you instead to 2 of my new-but-good friends Lori & Sandra, The Sling Sisters. Feel free to purchase some of their amazing products while you're there.

Day 16 - a song that makes you cry - I don't remember the last time I cried because of a song.

Day 17 - your favourite website

Well, the one that is always open on the laptop is Facebook. I'm not actually on FB 24 hours a day, although it probably looks like I am, but our mouse and screensaver have some kind of battle royal going on, so the computer often doesn't go to sleep. I also check the on-line news frequently throughout the day (,,, and have been reading Enjoying the Small Things quite a bit. And of course, because it is just so funny, I can't delete that website with the Weight Watcher's recipe cards from My Favourites. Because you never know when I might need to send someone a link to Frankfurter Spectacular.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Safeways

Yesterday I was out doing a little Christmas shopping and stopped in at Safeway for a few things. I was standing in a long line behind a dad and his (maybe 13 year old?) son. The boy was texting furiously and his dad was all "Who are you texting from The Safeways? MADISON?!? Ooooooh, Madison!!!!" (insert smoochy noises here.) Then he sent his son to the back of the store for 1 litre of eggnog. The boy came back within a few minutes with a 2 litre, the dad said "That's a 2 litre, I want a 1 litre," and sent him back again. The boy rolled his eyes but off he went.

Once his son was gone, the dad looked at me and said "We don't even need eggnog. I just like screwin' with his love life."

I laughed so hard I thought I might pee myself. And I can't help but think I've peered into a future Christmas moment of young Mr. Nicho Pink, shopping with Jeffy at The Safeways, wouldn't you say, Shanny?????

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Days 11, 12, & 13

Okay, so I'm not the best at posting everyday. Meh. Here's a few "all about me" things to catch me up a little:

Day 11: A photo that makes you angry/sad

Why would sweet little puppies make me angry/sad, you ask? I'm sad because it appears Declan may be allergic to the boys. If this is the case, they've got to go. That makes me sad, but it also makes me worried for them. Bert has seizures and is on daily medication. Ernie has allergies (hey, maybe he's allergic to Declan?) and is on crazy expensive specialty food. Who is going to take either of them with their special needs? Also, they are littermates who have never been apart. Even with different trainers and programs, we have not been hugely successful at breaking their pack mentality, as a result the 2 of them together are a bit intense, I don't know that anyone will want to take them both together. Sigh. Poor boys.

Day 12: Something you are OCD about

It's gotta be the cloth diapers. We initially went to cloth diapers when we found out Declan was on the way. I was a little bit interested in cloth when I was pregnant with Talia - Rainer was not on board at all. It was way more important to me that he be a diaper-changer than it was for my baby to be in cloth diapers, so I basically just stopped looking into it. When I got pregnant again, Rainer saw the financial advantage of having 2 in cloth vs. disposables (I love my accountant!!!), so we jumped in to the world of cloth diapers! The first day Rainer threatened to throw them all out the window, but by the end of the week he would be the first to tell you they are just as easy as disposables. He even does the laundry and totally recommends cloth to anyone who has a baby.

Anyway, the world of cloth diapering is pretty interesting. People have definite opinions re: the best diapers, the best wash routine, the best detergent, etc. I am a hard-core Bum Genius fan, for sure. I am also always on the hunt for the best detergent, best wash routine, any way I can improve my diapers, etc. And here's the kicker - I don't really have any problems that need solving. It's ridiculous that I spend so much time on the diapers - we've never had a leak (apart from our recent nighttime issue), a repelling problem, excessive staining, etc. We have a slight ammonia odor in the mornings - but when your kids are big wetters that sleep for over 12 hours, what can you expect? Even disposables will be stinky in the morning. Declan has become a super heavy night wetter, so I had to figure out what do about that, but that's a problem we would have with disposables as well. In any case, my friend Lori and I spend altogether too much time and energy figuring out diapering things, and I love every minute of it. And it's a good thing I do, since after we made the switch, both babies ended up developing allergies to all disposables except the 7th Generation diapers, which can be pretty expensive.

Day 13: A description of what is in your diaper bag

In my diaper bag right now:

- cloth diapers & flushable liners for Declan

- disposable diaper for Declan

- extra "geetch" and pants for Talia

- wipes

- table toppers

- wallet

- mittens

- extra outfit for Declan

- bibs

- presents for kids from the Playgroup party this week

- chequebook

- wetbags

- assorted pens and chapsticks

I would love to have one of those diaper bags that are actually 2 separate bags that attach together - that way I could take one or both, and I wouldn't have to be packing/unpacking a bunch of stuff depending on which kids I have with me.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Day 10: A Picture That Makes You Happy

Talia, giving her new baby brother some smooches at the hospital. It was so easy when Declan was born, he just slipped right into our family like he had always been here. I hope it's as easy with #3.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Day 9 and Conversations With My Son

Day 9: Description of My Dream House

Well, the locals know that my dream house fluctuates between the one right outside the perimeter and the one on the Niverville corner. But that's not a helpful description when you don't know either of those places, huh?

Rainer and I made a lot of changes to this house when we moved in. We haven't finished yet, we still want to pull up the rest of the carpet and finish the basement. There are many things I love about this house - it's a nice, open concept and it's very handy to have all the bedrooms & family room on the same level. What I would change about this house is a different layout in the kitchen (including a pantry), more bedrooms (since we keep filling them up with babies so fast!!) and another bathroom. We can achieve more bedrooms and another bathroom when we finish the basement, and if we stay here we could also renovate the main floor and achieve the kitchen remodel. We love the yard (especially the pool) and we've really become part of the community, so I would love to stay. But my goodness, we could use a bit more space, and the pool is too close to the house to allow for an addition, unless we build up and put on a second floor. So we'll see if this house evolves into my dream house. Stay tuned.

In other news, Declan has turned into a Chatty Cathy pracitically overnight. I love that his favourite things to say lend themselves easily to conversations with him. Here he was at the doctor's office the other day when some woman sat down beside us:
Declan: Hiiiiiiiiiiiii!
Stranger: Uh, did he just say "hi" to me?
Declan: Yeah!
Stranger (laughing): Well, hello, buddy. You ARE a boy, right?
Declan: YEAH!!
Stranger: You're the cutest thing I've ever seen!
Declan: Yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! (claps wildly)

It's really funny because he's almost 10 months old, but he's so tiny, so he seems far too young to be chatting away. I love setting him up with questions to answer "yeah" to, like "Is Mommy the boss around here?" and "You're so good lookin', do you take after your Mother?" The only problem is that he also has started saying Daddy, so he now he often ruins my game by squealing "DADDEEEEEEEEEEEE" and pointing at his father. Hrmph.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Day 8: Favourite Quote

I don't know who originally said it, but my favourite quote is:

"Different isn't always better, but better is always different."

I pulled this gem out in a job interview once and it totally got me the job. For reals.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Day 7 & Other Stuff

Day 7: A picture of me with the person I've been closest with the longest. I'm going to go ahead and say that's m'Mama. Here's a picture from about a year ago, with me, my girl, and my Mama - and of course Declan was there, just still on the inside. Hard to believe how much Talia has changed in a year, and now Declan is almost a year old and there's another babe in there!

What else is new here at the Raine Drop? Well, I have to say, I'm usually a big fan of winter. Number 1 supporter, even. I love all the winter things: sweaters and hot drinks, skating and playing in the snow, sleighrides and Christmas lights...... love it all. And yet, this year I'm feeling seriously close to being done with winter already. How can this be?

I think it's because I am so worn out from lugging m'babies around. I'm trying to be a healthy role model, trying to instill the benefits of living in a small town in the kids, blah blah blah, so I try to walk whenever we're going someplace here in town. The weather has been pretty great all fall and even since we got snow, it's been fairly warm. So last week I pulled both kids over to Playgroup and back on the sleigh. Abacus did not approve, and I had annoying Braxton-Hicks contractions for the rest of the day. A few days later, Declan and I ventured out to do some shopping and I had the worst time pushing the cart through all the snow. Today again, I had both kids with me to go to Superstore, so I needed a cart. Of course at Superstore you can only get carts outside, and it was really busy so we were parked about a mile away from the store, and it almost killed me to get the cart inside - never mind to get it back out to the van, full of 50lbs of kids and all our groceries for the week. Then of course there is the hassle of getting the kids into boots & snowsuits, then cramming my little abominable snowmen into their carseats, which NEVER tighten enough with a snowsuit on...... sigh. I'm just worn out. I need a day of staying home & doing nothing to recharge my batteries and rekindle my love affair with winter.

In other news, I took Declan to the dr. today, half expecting it to be another wasted trip of the "it's a virus, it has to run its course" variety. Imagine my surprise when we left with a prescription for a double ear infection, a different prescription for a yeasty-looking diaper rash, a referral to the top Pediatric Allergy & Asthma doc in the province, and a referral to the Child Development Clinic.

The first referral is because we suspect Declan may be allergic to the pups. He's coincidentally part of the CHILD Study, which is a 5 year long national study re: allergies & asthma, so because of this our regular dr. was able to get him in to see the specialist - the formal referral guarantees that Declan will be seen by the top guy, as opposed to some of the other (very good, I'm sure) docs that are running the study, and he will likely receive his allergy tests (that are a part of the regular study) earlier than planned. As an added bonus, this guy can apparently diagnose or rule out asthma in kids as young as Declan, which doctors don't typically do, so that will be good to know - my Mom claims Declan is just like my brother was before he was diagnosed with asthma as a child.

The second referral is because Declan doesn't use his legs at all. He *can* use his legs, and he seems to have average muscle tone, but if he's in his exersaucer/jumper/walker, he just dangles and refuses to put his feet on the floor. When he's in his walker he will use his arms to grab on to furniture to pull himself around the room, but again lets his legs dangle. He has also not rolled for about 4 months, and can't stand being on his belly so he has no interest in even attempting to crawl. Now, I'm not terribly worried about any of this, since Talia was very similar and didn't start walking until she was almost 18 months old. But we're getting him checked out anyway, because a) we won't be doing him any favours if there IS a problem and we don't discover it for months and b) I don't have anything going on so I might as well run him all over the city for appointments where we'll find out everything is fine. (Just kidding..... sort of.)
I also received notice today that our wonderful daycare will be closing after Christmas, which is really too bad. I already have a lead on another home daycare, though, so hopefully that all works out!!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Day 6: My Favourite Book

It's been my favourite book for many, many years.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Day 5 and Christmas Prep Begins!

Day 5: My Favourite TV Show

Dexter, since I usually stay up late on Sunday nights to watch it even though I'm exhausted from the weekend. Dexter Morgan is a serial killer, but it's okay, because he only kills the bad guys. :P

Yesterday Rainer and I had our anniversary date. My good friend Lisa fell in love with Talia when she was born, and used to always show her Mom the pictures I post on Facebook. Her Mom decided that they needed to have that little girl in their lives, and told Lisa that they had to babysit for us. So they have been Talia's adopted grandparents since she was about 6 months old. She's even had a sleepover there! Of course, now they take both kids and have a great time spoiling our babes. Yesterday they had the kids all day - we dropped them off around 9am. We ran a bunch of errands, did some Christmas shopping, saw a movie, did more shopping, and went for dinner before picking them up around 7:30. It was a fun and productive day that really wore me out!!! But I'm glad we've got the majority of our Christmas shopping done - now, on to baking!

Today was just a quiet day at home. We tried to get a nice picture for our family Christmas card. We were less than successful. Declan was super cranky and apparently hates sweater vests as much as his father does. Talia thought it was a big game to look away at the last possible second, of course the one picture where she actually looks at the camera is the one where Declan is rolling his eyes! I thought maybe I would be able to get some individual photos and choose a different card design, but Declan looks like a drunk Santa in a mug shot and there was just NO WAY Talia was willing to wear her Santa hat. Here are some of the rejected photos:

Sigh. Maybe this year everyone will just have to take our word that our kids are super cute!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Day 4: Picture of Me as a Child

Here are a few I scanned together last year because my mom wanted to see a comparison between Talia & me at the same age. I don't generally think either of the kids look like me, although when I look at baby pictures of myself, I see Tally's little face staring back at me fairly often - especially in the pictures that are full of attitude!!!!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Day 3: Favourite Movie

Anne of Green Gables - Megan Follows version, of course.

I can't wait until CBC shows it over the Christmas holidays. In fact, I wish I was curled up, watching it today instead of running around all over the city.

Declan and I headed in to the city this morning. I will admit I felt slightly granny-ish when a young guy blew past me on the highway, but I was totally vindicated about 10 minutes later when I came across him and his little Matrix in the ditch. Heh. Slow down, dummy.

My day has actually not worked out as planned. I wanted to renew my Autopac but the place here in town hasn't been plowed out yet - there was literally only 1 long trail leading up to the owner's truck, which was parked in front of the front door. Since I had no recollection of what the parking lot looked like underneath all the snow, I didn't know if I had room to turn around, if I could loop around, etc. And they are way too far off the street for me to park on Main Street and carry Declan through the snow, so I decided to just do it at the place in the mall.

We got to the mall and I didn't find a couple of things I was looking for, but then did find some things I wasn't really looking for, so that was okay. We were all the way over by the food court when I caught Declan throwing his cup over the edge of the cart onto the floor - I totally forgot that's his favourite game these days. So that sent me on the worst scavenger hunt ever, retracing our steps to find his toque, my toque, and only 1 of my awesome purple mitts. Boo hoo hoo.

When we were all done, I realized that I had forgotten to drop off Rainer's skates to be sharpened while I did my shopping. Sigh. So I dropped them off, then had about 1/2 an hour to kill, so I thought we would go have lunch. I got some pasta & veggie dish that wasn't appealing at all to the baby on the inside, but is the kind of lunch that Declan usually would eat every speck of and look for more, so I thought we could share. Well. Declan decided he would have NONE OF THAT, thank you very much, and Abacus seconded that motion. At least Declan made some new friends as he flirted with the old ladies at the table next to us, but all in all, lunch was a giant bust.

So I picked up Rainer's skates and then we headed out to the car. The Wal-Mart parking lot had been cleared at some point in the last 12 hours or so - enough that it was okay for driving but impossible to push the cart through. My cart was loaded with the diaper bag, Rainer's skates, a bunch of Christmas shopping, 2 cases of wipes, and Declan, so I decided I couldn't really leave it behind (although I was very, very tempted.) Some lady beside me said "You have to pull it from the front, like this!" and pulled on her own cart. She got it moving, but the bags she had sitting in the baby seat tumbled out onto the ground. Sigh. She was clearly right, the only way to move that cart was to pull, so I got D out of the seat and carried him while pulling my heavy cart through the snow. Did I mention that I'm about 23 weeks pregnant and can barely manoever myself through the snow? Double sigh. When I was about halfway to my vehicle, some shifty-looking guy offered to help me. I decided if it turned out he was just trying to rip me off, I didn't need anything in the cart that badly, and told him to go for it. When we got to the van and I thanked him, he said "I was sort of hoping you'd let me carry the baby." LOL! Thank you, kind stranger, but not in a million years would I have handed over my baby to you.

I got Declan all strapped in and my cart all unloaded and realized I'd forgotten 2 of the main things I went to the mall for in the first place. Frig. Oh well, Rainer can live without an anniversary card this year, and he can pick up Declan's eyedrops from the pharmacy in his office's building. Then we got back to town and I drove past the still-not-plowed-out insurance place, and realized that I didn't take care of my registration, either. Double frig. (Seriously, MPI? In this day and age, can't I just renew on-line and you can send me the stupid sticker?)

Anyway, things could always be worse. It's Thursday, after all, which is my favourite day of the week! Happy Thursday, everyone!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Day 2: Favourite Song

I don't really know if I have one favourite song, so here are a few of my favourites:

Click here for my favourite Christmas song, "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/We Three Kings" by Barenaked Ladies & Sarah McLachlan

Here is the first song from our wedding.

Here is the song we wanted to be the first song at our wedding, ha ha. That would have been so awesome. We settled for walking in to the theme from Rocky, but still.

I once listened to nothing but this on repeat all the way from Halifax to Toronto on the world's most terrifyingly turbulent flight. It kept me calm when my window FELL OUT AND LANDED IN MY LAP. (Turns out it was just the fake inside window, not the actual window that was keeping me from being sucked out of the plane. Phew.)

And of course, no favourite song list is complete without a little Sesame Street. Thank you, Talia, for opening up a whole new world of hilarious music to me.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

All About Me in 30 Days

I found this little project on a blog recently and I thought it might be one of those that I can handle. I mean, I really like the *idea* of that "Picture a Day for 365 Days" project, but let's get real, shall we?

Anyway, here's the list:

Day 1 - a recent photo of you

Day 2 - your favourite song

Day 3 - your favourite movie

Day 4 - a photo of you as a child

Day 5 - your favourite tv program

Day 6 - your favourite book

Day 7 - a picture of you and the person you have been closest with the longest

Day 8 - your favourite quote

Day 9 - your dream house (description or photo)

Day 10 - a photo that makes you happy

Day 11 - a photo that makes you angry/sad

Day 12 - something you are OCD about

Day 13 - a description of what's currrently in your diaper bag/purse

Day 14 - a photo of a person you'd love to trade places with for a day

Day 15 - a photo of yourself and a new friend you met this year

Day 16 - a song that makes you cry

Day 17 - your favourite website

Day 18 - a photo of your favourite memory

Day 19 - a picture of somewhere you'd like to travel

Day 20 - a talent of yours

Day 21 - a hobby of yours

Day 22 - a photo of your wedding/future plans

Day 23 - a photo of something that has made a huge impact on your life recently

Day 24 - a recipe

Day 25 - your worst habit

Day 26 - a photo of where you live

Day 27 - a photo of someone you could never imagine your life without

Day 28 - your hopes, dreams, and plans for the next 365 days

Day 29 - a picture of something you want to do before you die

Day 30 - it's Christmas Eve! a photo of what's under your tree this year!

And here we go:

Day 1: a recent photo of me

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Tis the Season

We always wait until Remembrance Day is over to slowly inch our way toward Christmas prep. Our Christmas lights are up and Talia is head-over-heels in love with Santa. She doesn't understand why he's going to bring her presents, or how he changed from being the ratty chew-toy in Bert's bed to being the awesome glowing dude at the front door, but she is all in, anyway. Here we are, watching her personalized video from Santa with our matching curly bedheads this morning.

So Talia's enthusiasm for Santa and all things Christmasy is making us all catch the Christmas spirit quickly this year! And our snowstorm this week has helped, as well. It never seems like Christmastime until there is snow on the ground. Rainer has a rule about only playing Christmas music as of December 1st, but we have moved the date up this year and are enjoying Raine Family Dance Parties to Christmas carols (with alarming regularity, truth be told.) I've started to pick up a few things and we hope to get the bulk of our shopping done this Saturday. We've decided to forego gifts for the adults this year in both sides of the family, since it is really all about the kids, so that cuts down in our brainstorming and shopping considerably.

Talia is coming along nicely with her skates, we didn't make it to the rink today but she has been practicing walking around the house wearing them (with guards on) and is even brave enough to walk short distances by herself now.

Declan is starting to talk at the ripe old age of 9.5 months - he says Da-da, ta (when playing a game of ta-ta, which involves him giving you whatever is in his hands and laughing his head off), yeah (when you ask him a question such as "do you want some more supper?" or "are you playing with [whatever he's playing with] ?") and he even says Tal sometimes when playing with his big sister. Still no inclination toward movement. He is perfectly content to let his legs dangle in his jumper/exersaucer/or walker and be pulled around by his sister, or occasionally he'll use his hands to pull himself along the furniture when he's in his wheels. I'm sure the start of his speech is just the next step in conning us all into doing his bidding, while he remains as sedentary as ever. Smarter than all of us, and not even a year old.

Today I printed my Mom's annual Christmas letter and ordered her Christmas cards, and it has inspired me to send our own family update this year....... maybe......... if I can get my act together in time! We also ordered our community calendar - we had to add Declan this year and the guy doing the order repeated the spelling about 3 times - I feel there is about a 20% chance of our little guy's Irish name appearing correctly dans le calendrier francais. (Sacre bleu! What is with Blogger only randomly accepting french accents or symbols when it feels like it??? For shame, Blogger, for shame.)

I'm even starting to think of our Christmas menu as we're hosting this year. We've decided that our kids should have memories of waking up on Christmas morning here, in their home. It seemed like a really good idea until I realized that has just doomed me to ALWAYS COOKING CHRISTMAS DINNER. Ah, well. That way I can make whatever I like and don't have to be polite about eating someone else's weird, I mean, special traditional favourite. (I'm lookin' at you, Rainer.)

Sunday, November 14, 2010


The big day has finally arrived, Talia hit the ice today!!
We got her all decked out with new skates & a helmet yesterday. Public skating here in town is free for an hour on Sunday afternoons, so we headed over just after lunch. Yes, that is exactly when naptime usually starts, so we thought we may be in for a not-so-fun time.

Talia was super excited and kept asking us "Mommy, you comin' skating wif me? Daddy, you comin' skating wif me? Brutter, you comin' skating wif me?" She really likes her pink helmet and can't take her eyes off her skates when she's got them on.

So since this was her first time on skates and all, she was terribly wobbly. She thought it was super cool when Daddy picked her up and zipped her around the rink. She thought it was super lame when one of us went with her on the ice, but when we each took a hand she started to get the hang of it and walked all around out on the ice.

We had a pretty good time! Declan, chill as ever, hung out in his stroller while Rainer & I had Talia out on the ice together, and we watched the action when Daddy had big sister out by himself. Talia had moments when she really liked it and moments when she was really "ALL DONE SKATING!!!" We lasted about 25 minutes, which I think is great for the first try. We're not expecting her to be jumping and spinning by the end of the season, but it's a fun family activity that Rainer and I both love, and we want to be healthy role models and expose the kids to all kinds of sports at an early age.

The only thing that wasn't great about the day was when we were leaving, I was walking out behind a woman I recognized from Run Club, and her friend said to her "Did you see that guy with the 2 year old out on the ice? That's so friggin' ridiculous!!!!" Sigh. That's a small town for you. Rainer and I were clearly the only parents on the ice that could actually skate, so Talia was in far safer hands than the 3 year olds whose parents were barely managing to not fall on top of their kids. Sheesh. Anyway, imagine their disapproval had they known that Rainer & I were both on the ice before we were 2, and that I was skating around today at 22 weeks pregnant!! Ha!!!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Random Fall Updates

- Declan is just a few days shy of 9 months old. He's starting on cow's milk and is only nursing once or twice a day. That makes me sad, because m'boy is really into boobs, but the fact is that the pregnancy hormones are fighting with the milk hormones, and the pregnancy is winning. I don't have much milk left, so even when I do nurse him all day long, I'm topping him up with formula anyway. And of course my little prince needs the expensive $30/can formula, not the generic $8/can formula. I will not be sad to see the end of that stuff at our house. I mean, I know formula has saved a lot of babies' lives (including Declan's, probably) and I do not care AT ALL if someone has to, or chooses to, feed their baby formula - but for some reason it has been really hard on me to give it to Declan. Probably because I feel like he's being rushed out of baby-hood since there is another on the way, and think that if it weren't for me being pregnant, he could have continued his great love affair with the boob for much longer.

- Declan had his 9 month appointment this morning. While he continues to be massive to us (in comparison to his sister at this age) he is only 17lbs (5th percentile) and just over 27 inches (10th percentile.) Our hilarious doctor was all "He must seem like a giant to you.... how does your husband feel???" Poor Rainer, he keeps holding out hope for a giant Rainer Jr., but it looks like the McQueen genes reign supreme with the first 2 babes!! Declan also has 2 teeth and no interest in crawling. He won't even roll anymore! Now that's lazy!!

- Declan is on table food and doing great with it. We went out for lunch today and he had his first meal off the kids' menu. (Kids' menus are full of garbage, by the way. I mean, really? I'm not going to order my kid a corndog and fries. I'm just not.) Anyway, he got a plain mini-hamburger, broccoli, and applesauce and he ate the entire lunch. I don't know where he puts it.

- Talia is doing great. She talks a mile a minute and is always making us laugh with what comes out of her mouth. She insists that she wants "anutter brutter" when we talk about the new baby. Rainer thinks she is going to end up with an army of tiny brothers, who she will train to do her bidding.
- Talia is completely diaper-free during the day, including her nap. She has a bad habit of taking her diaper off in the middle of the night but can't make it until morning consistently, so that has been greeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeat. Oh well, I wash diapers almost everyday anyway, so what's one more load of laundry?

- We are 100% in the midst of the "I do it mineself" phase, which means we are late for many events and get there with clothes on backwards and shoes on the wrong feet. But hey, as long as she's wearing pants, I am not complaining. Did I mention that her favourite thing to do is take off her pants & panties and ask people "See my pee-pee?" BECAUSE IT IS.

- Okay, here's the thing about Abacus. I suggested Atticus as a name the other night and Rainer, accountant that he is, heard "Abacus." That's just funny, because who likes math that much? We hadn't come up with a good "on-the-inside" name for the baby yet, so Abacus has sort of stuck. But the more we use it, the more people think it's for real. IT'S NOT. So sorry, but don't get your hopes up.

- We had our 20-ish week ultrasound this morning. I had thought I was 20 weeks, 1 day along today and that's exactly what the measurements came back as. My Dr. did not believe me, as my exclusive breastfeeding of Declan at the time of conception and my morning sickness hitting really early - too early, in her opinion - made for lots of back-and-forth when it came to settling on a due date. In any case, I will take great pleasure in telling her to suck it at my next appointment. (Lovingly, of course, because she really is awesome and hilarious.)

- Abacus looks healthy as a horse and is on track to be the same size as his/her brother and sister were. Poor Rainer, looks like he's zero for three when it comes to our kids' genetics. Seriously, was he involved in this at all???

- And in our first EPIC FAIL of parenting where Abacus is concerned, we didn't get ultrasound pictures. In our defense, usually they give you a form to fill out when you first get there AND the tech asks you if you want them. This time we got no form and the tech didn't mention it, and we didn't think about it until we were at lunch afterward. Poor, poor, third baby. The neglect is beginning already.

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Boys

When we were expecting Talia, we didn't know how "the boys" would react to having a baby in the house. When we brought her home from the hospital, they were initially wild with excitement to get a good sniff, but it was sort of like they knew she was tiny, and vulnerable, and here to stay.

We spent a few days training them to stay off a blanket on the floor, so when Talia arrived and started hanging out on the floor everyday, they already knew that was a no-dog zone. That particular rule resulted in a lot of this:

The novelty eventually wore off with Ernie, but Bert took the responsibility of taking care of his baby very seriously. When I would nurse Talia, he would sit right in front of us like he was standing guard - not even Ernie could get by him. And although both pups were very good about the "no dogs on the blanket" rule, occasionally we would find Bert, snuggled up to his baby, giving us his best puppy dog eyes.

Before too long, he trained his partner in crime to use her puppy dog eyes, too.

"Aw, Mommy, can't Bert stay here with me? Just this once?"

When we brought Declan home, the boys hardly noticed there was a new baby in the house. Now that he's on solids, they've decided he's okay, and like to hang out under his highchair. But they generally can't be bothered to sneak on the blanket anymore. Unless, of course, the combination of nice cushy blankets, a firm pillow at chin-height, and the glorious sun spot combine to make the baby's blanket the most irresistable spot in the house.

Here's hoping the new baby will sleep just as peacefully in that same spot!

Friday, October 15, 2010

You Just Never Know

When I was pregnant with Talia, I used to daydream about what it would be like to be a mother. I was positive my baby would be a little girl, and I would think about all the mother-daughter moments we would share.

I did not think that someday that baby would be 2 years old, and the thing I would most often say to her would be "Stop taking your panties off and putting them on your brother's head!"

That's the kind of week it's been around this place. Hello, Friday. We're glad you're here.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Coffee Talk

Today at lunchtime Talia was delighted to drink out of her brother's new little plastic mug (part of the Noah's Ark dishes Declan got from G & G for his baptism.) She very seriously peered in at her milk and then said sternly to me "Mommy! Diss my hot coffee. You no touch diss, Mommy, diss burn you!"

Little does she know I don't touch the stuff - don't want it to stunt my growth, ha ha.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Salt & Pepper

Talia has been going to daycare with the same kids for over a year now - they started at JoJo's house, then JoJo went back to work and the whole crowd moved 2 houses down the street to Jody's house. We don't know the kids & other parents really well, but well enough to know almost everyone's names, who is connected to which child, etc.

One little girl, A, is always there in the morning before Talia gets there, so Rainer (who does the drop-0ff) has never met her parents. I am often picking Talia up at the same time as A's parents get there, so I'd met them several times. Since July, A has a new baby brother, so her mom is off on mat leave and we've gotten to know each other better at the local Playgroup.

Last week at pick-up time I told A's mom how Talia insists the little blonde girl down the street is A whenever we meet them at the park. A's mom laughed and said that A thinks the little girl on the Pampers box is Talia. We giggled away at the silliness of our 2 year olds.

Well, this morning at Playgroup A's mom brought it up again, and it led into a conversation about what a shame it is that our little town isn't very multi-cultural, and that Talia is the only black kid any of the kids in Playgroup know, and is it very hard for Talia to be the only black child in town? I was like "Yeah, we're not very multi-cultural, which is weird because Winnipeg is so multi-cultural..... wait, what? Talia's not the only black kid in town - she's not black."

I thought A's mom was going to fall over, she was so shocked. Then my friend jumped in and said "I was surprised when I met Rainer this weekend, he's totally white!" Then some of the moms I'm friends with on FB jumped in with what they had guessed Rainer's race to be, and how shocked they were when they saw him on FB. Comments varied from "I thought she was adopted but she looked so much like you.... I couldn't figure it out!" to "It's not my place to judge, but I was totally curious as to how you managed to get yourself together and find a new guy to be Declan's dad, since there wasn't much time between the two of them!" to "I just thought Declan would darken up. I thought it was weird his eyes were blue, though." I thought it was so funny that they thought we had some exciting, exotic, interesting story to our family, and they were SO disappointed to find out we were just 2 boring white people who got married and had a brown baby.

I am still laughing. Oh Talia, my little mystery baby. The conversation this morning brought me right back to Talia's birth - I shared a room with a couple of crazies over the course of our extended stay, but one mom was lovely - she was black, and the dad was white, and Talia was darker than their baby was. That led to all kinds of switched-at-birth jokes. We actually ran into them in the mall when the girls were about 13 months old, and Talia was still darker and her hair was curlier than the other little girl - her mom laughed and said "Damn! Maybe we really DID switch them!!"

In the months after Talia was born, I took a Stroller Fit class at the mall, and inevitably at least once during each class someone would stop me to comment on Talia's beautiful skin/colour/hair and would ask where her father was from. It took me a long time to realize why they seemed confused when I told them Kenora.

When Declan was born, he was so fair and red-headed that Rainer and I were like "THAT'S not what our babies look like!!" I've actually gotten used to my nothing-at-all-alike kiddos, so it really made me laugh today when 1/2 the Playgroup fessed up to assuming the kids had different fathers of different races. I wonder what # 3 is going to look like? Will he or she continue to make the tongues wag around town? I hope so!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Score Another For The Catholics

Declan was finally baptized this past weekend. My Mom is super relieved and had a good sleep on Saturday night for the first time since he was born. She believes in the old-school Catholic belief that an un-baptized baby will never get into heaven, so I'm sure she has been a nervous wreck for the past almost-8 months.

Before the baptism I was wondering who would be silently judging me more, the people who thought I was still fat from the last baby, or the people who realized I'm already pregnant with the next one. When I finally found something to wear (a non-maternity shirt that is totally maternity-styled and a pair of pants from before I got pregnant with Talia - how do those still fit???) it was pretty clear everyone would be able to tell baby # 3 is well on the way! My entire family laughed right out loud when I came out of my room, I guess until this weekend I'd been hiding the bump pretty well this time.
We were expecting our regular priest to do the baptism, so we were a little surprised when we got there and it was the parochial assistant. I mean, it was fine and all, just not who we expected. So the thank you card was addressed to Father Phil, but my glossing-over-the-details husband gave it to the other guy anyway, ha! Oh well.

We met a little boy at church whose middle names are Declan and Raine, what are the odds of that? His mom was thrilled to bring her little boy over to meet our Declan.

Declan was feverish and kind of a cranky mess until the end of the baptism. My Mom took great pleasure in claiming the baptism healed him, but I think he was just excited to get to the party afterward.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Ya Know?

This weekend we took a quick trip to K-town to take the boats out of the water. We had lots of fun, but the kids were also off their regular schedule for the weekend and that's always hard on them after a few days.

They were troopers, though. On Friday night they were up late visiting with Grandma & Grandpa and on Saturday night they were up until 11pm (!) putting on a show for Uncle Mike & Auntie Jenn. I actually couldn't believe they did so well on Saturday night, since they'd already had a late night and crappy naps. But by the time we were ready to leave yesterday afternoon, they'd both had it. We always plan to travel at nap time when possible so they sleep in the car. As we were strapping them in, they were both overdue for naps and were crying. Talia looked over at her little brother wailing away beside her and said pitifully "I know, Brutter. I know." before promptly falling asleep.

Well, even though they have unfit parents that keep them out until all hours of the night, at least they have each other.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Music Lessons and One Wet Dog

Here is Talia, happy as a clam and on her way to her very first music lesson:

However, in the 15 minutes it took us to get to music lessons, she fell asleep and turned into a grumpy bear. I think she actually has the cold her brother has had this past week. She was really timid and seemed scared of the 6 boys in her class - she's the only girl and they were WILD with excitement, but still. Talia has the wild boys at daycare wrapped around her little finger, I totally thought she would jump right on the crazy train. But no. She cried and stayed glued to me for almost the entire lesson. It was very odd, as Talia is typically the most independent 2 year old I've ever met and very rarely wants to be picked up or cuddled, especially when she's out at a program or with other kids.

THANK GOD Declan was happy to lounge in his bucket and watch the show. I almost didn't bring the carseat in - he's now gained enough weight that he's at that stage where he's too heavy to take any distance in the carseat, but when I don't bring it with us, I wish that I had. (And vice versa. You know that stage? Right. I hate it. But it was pouring rain and both kids were asleep when we got there, so it was just easier to pop the seat out of the car and run him into the house.) He even got to have his sucky for the entire 45 minutes - he's down to only having it for naps and bedtime - in an effort to plug up his gross cough, and it worked like a charm. Sick baby? What sick baby?

Anyway, as luke-warm as she was while we were there, she chattered away about the star she made all the way home (Look Mommy! See? See my star? Twinkle! Twinkle!) and when we got home she had to call Grammie, Daddy, and Uncle to tell them all about it. Plus she sang the songs (that she refused to sing at the lesson) and did all the actions (that she refused to do at the lesson) so I guess she picked it up anyway.

Then she had multiple phlegmy coughing fits, cried her way through lunch, and went down for her nap early. My apologies to the wild boys, although Talia was so scared of them she didn't let them come within 4 feet of her, so she probably didn't pass on round 2 of the Great Plague to any of them.

In other news, I made the dogs stay outside for about 1/2 an hour while I was waiting for my friend to drop by because I didn't want them to freak out at the door and wake up my light sleeper, Declan. I felt a little bad because it was still raining, but whatever, if they were smart they would know to wait under the picnic table, a dry spot about 2 feet away from where they usually hang out on the deck. One of them was smart enough to do that. The other one was not. So of course poor Bert smells like a wet dog, which makes me throw up. And bless his little heart, Bert always sticks to me like velcro when I'm sick and tries to lick me better, which just makes me throw up more. Sigh. I think I should crawl into bed with my 2 sick little Rainedrops.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Rub A Dub Dub

...... two big kids in the tub.

Look how delighted Declan is to be in the big boy tub! Look how less than thrilled Talia is! Talia's been begging for months "Brutter coming in bath?" When he finally made his big tub debut the other night, Talia grabbed the cloth and started to drown, I mean, bathe him. She thinks this bathtime duet is super lame since Daddy won't let her wash Declan.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Number Three

I asked Declan what he wanted for his birthday and he said "A baby brother or sister." And since our kids are spoiled, that's what he's getting.

Our third Rainedrop will be here sometime around the end of March. Date to be determined - I think we'll do another c-section, but since the last 2 babies both behaved like preemies at birth and narrowly escaped a stay in the NICU (despite Talia being born right on her due date and Declan only being 6 days early) we haven't decided when exactly that will be.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

6 Months of Declan

Since Declan will actually be 7 months on Thursday, I guess I should get around to posting these 6ish month pics! Here are some pictures of Declan with his bear from Uncle Kent & Auntie Chantal.

Newborn Declan:

6 month (and a bit) Declan:

He's doing great and is packing on the weight, hard to believe that it was less than a month ago that we were busy with specialist appointments and researching ways to fatten up this boy. In fact, some old ladies gave me a tsk-tsk in a waiting room today because they thought he was too big and fat for his age!! I just can't win, yo.

Sunday, September 5, 2010


When I was pregnant with Talia, Rainer and I were plagued with anxiety. Not your regular first-time-parent anxiety, mind you. I mean, we were pretty sure we would figure out the feeding/bathing/changing. After all, as Rainer liked to remind everyone - "People waaaaaaaaay dumber than us have babies all the time."

Anywho. Back to our anxiety. Rainer and I would be hanging out, and suddenly I would be gripped by panic and blurt out to my husband "What are we going to do if the baby isn't funny?" He would look back at me with fear in his eyes and whisper "I don't know. I just don't know."

Fast-forward 2 years. Talia is a non-stop chatterbox who, to our great relief, keeps us in stitches ALL. DAY. LONG. She is actually difficult to discipline at times, because she is hilarious. It is so hard to swallow our grins and giggles and be stern!

The stinker knows she's funny, too. Yesterday as I was trying to get her organized to go out, she kept pretending to fall asleep. (Note to self: now you know just how annoying that always is to Rainer when you do that as soon as he starts talking accounting.) When I told her she needed to smarten up, she rolled her eyes, clearly exasperated with her out-of-touch mother, and said "Mommy, I funny!!!"

Yes, you are, Littlenose. Now, of course, when you're really funny, you don't need to tell people. But let's cut her some slack, she is only two, after all.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Surviving the Great Plague

We at the Raine Drop have just been hit by the Great Plague of 2010. It hasn't lasted terribly long - we're getting better already, actually - but it has knocked us on our collective arse.

Since today was the first day since the weekend that I didn't feel like death was imminent, I finally summoned up the energy to take the kids outside. (The weather is lousy here, so at least we haven't been missing much while we've been sick!)

We started off strong. I set Declan up with some toys to chew on, sitting on a blanky, while Talia amused herself by running all over the yard, looking for "Nernie poop!" Declan took in the backyard and vaguely remembered the great outdoors.

Declan, after trying to follow the puppies as they zoomed past him:

As I went to un-topple Declan, Talia decided that 15 degrees and a kiddie pool full of dirty water from days of wind & rain made for the perfect conditions for swimming.

My little waterbug.

I fished Talia out and told her to go play with her brother.

"Brother! I runnin'!!!"

"Brother! I sleepin'!!!"

At this point it started to rain a bit, but we aren't made of sugar, so it was hoods up and full steam ahead. How is it possible that 2 people that love hats like Rainer and myself have produced an offspring who HATES anything on his cute little head?

Trying to distract Declan from the fact his hood was up, I told Talia to show us her best moves.
"Brother! I readin'!!!"
"Brother! I wheeeeeeeeeeee!!!!"

Even Ernie wasn't impressed.

Then it started to pour, so we came in for reals. Sigh. The good thing is the kids are still sick, so that mere 20 minutes outside zonked them right out. They had an early lunch and were practically begging for naps. The bad thing is Mama is still sick, too, and that 20 minutes nearly killed me. I think I'll go join the McRainer Super Sleepers for a little shut-eye myself.