Saturday, August 30, 2008

Yea!!

Its the long weekend baby!!

I survived the last week of summer and my sanity is still in tact.
I had a couple days where I didn't think I was going to make it and after yesterday.. I was certain i would be in the looney bin, but we made it.

It rained most of yesterday so it ruined my plans for lots of outdoor summer activities, but somehow I kept them busy with crafts, play and some goodies.
Thankfully Debbie took the older kids over to her place for a couple hours so the young ones could have a rest and I could collect myself.

I can tell you now that I truly hate Summer. LOL. It is fun.. but it was so darn busy.. it flew so fast.

I think we got the last of the needed school supplies now, we just have to do groceries tomorrow and that's it. I am doing a big cleaning today, I have most of Helyn's room cleaned up, just need to vaccuum.. the boys room will be another story.

Sigh... the house needs a good cleaning and I can't wait until the basement is done. I have a few ideas of what I want to do down there. I haven't told Glen some of them, but it won't be too scary for him, I hope.
Ha Ha.

So here are some pics from this week of the kids

Aidan and his handsome self

My handsome Aj

Aidan and his best Bud Sam

best buds

Liam and his noodle

Liam and his noodle

Helyn enjoying her cupcake

enjoying cupcakes

Enjoying cupcakes

Thursday, August 28, 2008

2 more days!!

2 more days left until the end of summer for the kids.
Oh I can't begin to tell you how excited I am.
LOL
Liam is looking forward to going back, but Aidan isn't. I have been trying to really prepare him for it though. Its getting easier as the week is going on. I think he will do fine.. its just getting up to that first day.
There may be some days where I just have 2 kids here during the day while the older ones are at school. I may be up to 4 on others, but after having 8 all summer and then the countless number of friends in and out.. I can deal with 4. Hee hee. Especially since they all have the same interests and I can take them to play groups, the park, have circle time and no one will complain. They still all like the little games and songs we sing whereas the older ones not so much.

Helyn's birthday is coming up very soon.. just over 2 weeks now. I can't believe she will be 3. I have been asking her for ideas for what to get her and all she tells me is Cake, Presents and Balloons. Then you ask her who she wants to invite and she says Candles, balloons cake and presents. LOL

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Learning to tie his shoes.

I decieded to get Liam some lace up shoes ( they were on sale for 2$).
He is 8 1/2 and doesn't know how to tie his own shoes.. so we figured its about time.
He is practicing right now and having a very hard time at it. I wish I could just turn on the switch and he could do it. He was at it last night for over an hour too.

Poor Little guy. He wants to do it so badly too.

Yesterday was tough on me. All of the kids had some behavior problems at some point and it was very overwhelming. Helyn was screaming at Waylon, Waylon was bothering everyone it seemed ( he just wanted to be included) and Jorian... oh Jorian the brute is all I can say. Liam was tired and a little moody as was Aidan. The girls were ok... at least that is what I recall.

I should have just broken open a bottle of something after dinner and made myself forget yesterday all together, but we had to do groceries. Then it started there. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Well lets just say I jumped into the bath,turned off the lights and locked the door.It was heaven for about 15 minutes when I had to come back, but at least I had that time to myself.

Glen is away next week from Tuesday till Sunday so I am going to steal as many breaks as I can get this week.

Monday, August 25, 2008

OH I forgot.

We brought the kids to The United Church yesterday.
They did really well. The kids sunday school classes don't start until the second Sunday in September so they had to sit for the entire service. They were so well behaved. We had to remind Aidan a few times not to hit the pew in front of us and Helyn had to be snuggled a lot, but yea. What do you expect.

One lady was so in awe that they were so good and Liam said " well its our first time at Church". LOL

So yea.. we will probably skip this coming week but go back the following one when classes are on.

Working with Aidan

Last night I used some of the suggestions in the article I found.

They worked really well. I talked about it with Glen and he is going to use some of the approaches as well.

We are going to "warm him up" by preparing him for situations where he might feel threatened, like at a restaurant. We talk about what the situation may be like, what he can order and just ready him for it.

I think we will just have to do this every day to make sure the day goes well. Let him know what is going to happen and etc.

He is also going to need lots of reassurance and love and hugs. He is very emotional and loving little guy. We need to make sure he is getting it. Being the middle child is hard and he needs to be seen and heard.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

I just found this and wanted to bookmark it.

I am going to use some of these strategies in helping Aidan.


http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/dca-dea/pubs/ffc-ief/book3.html#preschoolers

Strategies and Activities
The following information contains strategies and activities to help infants, toddlers, and preschoolers cope with their feelings of anxiety. Some of the following strategies and activities can be used with infants, toddlers and preschoolers, while others are specific to one age group. All of the strategies and activities can be modified to suit the child's or the setting's needs.

Strategies and Activities for Infants, Toddlers, and Preschoolers
Regular health and developmental check ups.
Sometimes children may have health problems that cause them to feel anxious. For this reason, children must regularly see a health care professional such as a doctor or nurse.
Help caregivers to understand their child's temperament/personality.
Educate caregivers about temperament/personality differences.
Ask questions about their child's personality, including a discussion of their:
Routines.
Levels of crying.
Moods.
Activity levels.
Reactions to change.
Levels of frustration.
Help caregivers to create routines in the home and other care environments to accommodate their child's needs.
Help the child to deal with separations.
Introduce the child to potential caregivers before leaving the child in the care of someone new.
Tell the child what is going to happen several times before it actually happens (remind the child at least 5-10 minutes beforehand).
If you are leaving, tell the child when you will be back and include a time frame that can easily be understood (e.g., "I will see you right after snack time.").
Encourage the child to choose a favourite toy or other objects to help cope with new situations.
Soft and comforting objects such as blankets and toys are healthy substitutes to help children deal with new and possibly stressful situations.
Have caregivers recognize their own emotions toward a separation experience.
A child looks toward a caregiver for reassurance of safety and confidence.
Caregivers need to recognize their own feelings and any apprehensions they may have concerning situations where their child may experience anxiety.
Set a positive tone to the situation while acknowledging the child's feelings
Encourage the caregiver not to dwell on the situation, as this may increase the child's anxiety. A quick good-bye can sometimes be the most helpful thing a caregiver can do.
If the caregivers still feel uneasy, encourage them to call the centre and check on their child.
Some centres also feel comfortable with caregivers staying with the child during programming. Check with the policies of the centre for what can be done to make the child and caregiver more comfortable.
Remember that some fears are age appropriate.
Be aware that it is normal for children to have fears that, by adult standards, may seem farfetched (e.g., monsters under the bed).
These fears may actually disappear on their own, as children develop and have more experiences.
Follow the ABC's when observing behaviours.
The ABC's (antecedents, behaviours, consequences) is based on a behavioural model of observing and understanding behaviours. When trying to understand a child's feelings of anxiety, try using the following to understand their behaviours better
Antecedents
What are the events that happened before the anxious behaviour occurred?

Who was involved?
Where did it happen?
When did it happen?
Behaviours
What did the child do or not do in the situation?

Describe all of the behaviours that occurred (i.e., verbal and physical actions) with the child and anyone else involved.
Consequences
What occurred after the behaviour?

What type of intervention was used?
How did the caregivers/peers respond?
How did the situation end?
Did the behaviour continue, gain intensity, or stop?
How did the child respond
Support caregivers with children who experience anxiety.
Ask the caregivers about their own developmental history. Sometimes earlier experiences of caregivers may affect the care they provide for their children.
If a caregiver experiences a stressful situation, a referral to an agency or support group may help.
Also, encourage caregivers to support one another by sharing experiences and discussing different techniques and strategies.
Infant Strategies and Activities
Help the infant to interact with new people.
Approach the infant slowly. Both caregiver and stranger should be sensitive to any signs of wariness (e.g., an upset face) or withdrawal (e.g., such as an infant clutching his/her caregiver) when they occur.
Let the infant get to know the new person on his/her own terms and at his/her own pace. Do not rush the infant but let the infant determine how close to get.
New people should be introduced gradually before the infant is left in their care:
Infant is left with the new person, while caregiver is in the room.
Infant is left with the new person, while caregiver is just outside the room.
Infant is left with the new person for short periods of time, gradually increasing to the desired length of time.
Toddler and Preschooler Strategies and Activities
Explain the new situation to the child.
Describe what will happen briefly and clearly.
Try to have eye contact with the child as you are speaking (if this is a culturally appropriate way to interact).
During the week, remind the child regularly about the situation and what will happen so that the child is prepared to some degree.
Let the child know ahead of time (5-10 minutes) on the day when the separation may occur.
Visit the location in advance. Show the child where things are located. Introduce the child to the educator/teacher.
Talk about the anxiety with the child.
Help the child describe or label what frightens him/her and to ask questions about the situation.
Be empathetic to the child's feelings of anxiety.
Use phrases such as, "It is ok to feel this way."
If the child is stressed, reassure the child before, during, and after the situation through words and physical comfort (e.g., hugging).
Help the child feel in control.
Let the child create a routine. This may include allowing him/her to choose clothes, or encouraging him/her to set up a calendar where he/she can keep track of the days of the week. This will help the child feel that he/she has control over his/her life.
Try distracting the child.
Sometimes anxiety can be reduced if the child has a familiar toy or object nearby. Present the child with familiar objects with which to play and interact.
These objects can include items like stuffed animals and blankets.
Introduce activities where children can manipulate objects and be soothed by the activity such as arts and crafts, water play, sand play, and play dough.
Objects such as puppets, dolls, blocks, and toy cars may help distract and provide relaxation for children and may help them to cope with their anxiety.
Engage in physical activities such as 'Ring around the Rosie,' and 'Duck, Duck, Goose.'
Engage in interactive activities such as story telling and songs. Stories that deal with fearful situations may help children cope with stress, while songs may help them channel their energy and communicate their feelings.
Use humour to help the child laugh and feel less distress during an anxious situation. Find creative ways to help the child feel at ease.
Set an example for the child.
Be calm, assured, and relaxed in new situations, and demonstrate a level of confidence.
Children can learn by example and may also begin to feel success in situations where they feel anxious.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Summing It Up
During infancy, young infants start out rather fearless in new situations. As they begin to recognize their caregivers and the familiarity of situations, they begin to develop feelings of distress and anxiety. They express these feelings through being wary and cautious in new situations. They also begin to feel separation and stranger anxiety when they are separated from their caregivers and placed with adults unfamiliar to them.
Toddlers are known for their energy levels and sense of adventure. Their explorations encourage them to become more independent from their caregivers. They also develop mastery of situations and take an initiative in recreating these situations.
Preschoolers have become more sophisticated in the fears they experience; situations that caused anxiety in the past do not do so now. They also remember events, and therefore can anticipate different situations that in the past would have caused them grief. Attending a preschool or child care program can be a stressful experience for a preschooler, as they must adjust to separating from their caregivers for longer periods of time.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Glossary
Acquired fear: A fear that develops when a relatively safe situation reminds the child of a fearful situation experienced in the past.

Adaptive: Having a thought, emotion, or behaviour that is helpful to engage in.

Anxiety: A feeling of uneasiness in anticipation of an experience.

Coping skills: Behaviours and attitudes used to help one deal with a situation.

Distress: Feelings of anxiety and unhappiness.

Fear: Emotion caused by a feeling of worry, anxiety, or distress towards an object, person, or experience.

Independence: To rely on one's self and not others.

Initiative: The ability to take a lead in an activity/situation.

Maladaptive: Having a thought, emotion, or behaviour that is unhelpful to engage in.

Mastery: Having accomplished an activity or gained control over a situation.

Object permanence: A development in infancy around 8-10 months of age where objects (including people) are permanent and exist when out of the infant's view.

Separation anxiety: A feeling of anxiety and distress a child feels when separated from his/her caregiver; initially develops between 9-12 months of age.

Stranger anxiety: A feeling of anxiety and distress when a child is with a person other than his/her caregiver(s) and with whom he/she is unfamiliar; initially develops between 9-12 months old.

Wary look: A look of hesitation and uncertainty. In infancy, can include the following behaviours: becoming quiet, staring, knitting one's brows, sombre (i.e., gloomy) expression, looking away.

Happy Anniversary to Us.

Yesterday was our 11th wedding anniversary.
Can you believe that we are still going strong?
Craziness. It does not feel like 11 years.

Glen had to work yesterday so me and the kids spent the morning out and I took them out for Brunch at the Good Food Company and then we came back home and I cleaned.

We got some dinner for take out( the kids had potato wedges and chicken fingers, me and Glen made a chicken Caesar salad).

We made last minute plans to go into the city to Zaphods and caught a couple live bands playing. It was a good night out I think. We got home at 130ish and send our good friend Debbie home who watched the kids for us. THANKS Debbie.

Glen brought the boys out to see Star Wars Clone Wars on Friday. Liam really enjoyed it, but Aidan just wanted to come home. He hasn't been doing well in busy places lately and he said he wasn't feeling well. He is just like daddy. We have to figure out his anxiety issues and help him learn how to relax or control them. We have been doing deep breathing exercises with him and talking him down when he gets all out of sorts.

What to do??

I am going to ask our counsellor if she can refer him to a child professional to help him out. I am at a loss of what to do.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

One of those proud mommy moments!!

Warning... potty talk here.

Helyn was in the bath and she did her normal wanting out of the tub because she had to go. I got her out and dried her off and I told her that if she had to poo, it had to be on the potty because we didn't have any diapers.

She went downstairs, sat down and peed and then I told her that if she went poo, we would go get her a special surprise.

Well, OMG she pooped in the potty!!!!

Oh it was awesome.
LOL

We went to the store and she picked out juice boxes and garbage pail candy as her special treat. LOL

Oh I hate horror movies!!

Glen and I watched Disturbia last night, well finished watching it.
I hate horror movies. LOL
It took me 3 times to watch it all the way through.
Why do they scare me so much.
I really do not like them, but I really wanted to see this one all the way through.
It was good.. just made me really scared.
I am such a suck.

LOL

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Helyn's Halloween costume options.

Which one do you like better?

One is a Pink Poodle I think, the other is a lady bug and the other a frog.






Tuesday.

I think I am catching a cold.
Ugh.

Becky came to pick up Ben and Blue yesterday and I just fell to pieces. We both tried to keep it straight, but we hugged goodbye and it was so gut wrenching. I pulled it together after a couple minutes but continued to lose it off and on all day. (Sorry Becky).

We finally got to know each other these last 8 years and I can say that you have been my best friend, confidant and my sanity and it was very hard to let you go yesterday. I don't think Glen really understood how I could be so upset ( maybe a little bit, but I don't think he got the entire picture).

Anyways, I will miss not having you half an hour away if I need you.
I will miss not being able to call you just because I need to bitch to someone and vice versa without worrying about my long distance minutes.
I will miss our little day trips into Ottawa and not meeting up with you guys for the afternoon.

I just miss you so much and it has only been half a day since you left.

On the bright side, we still have the internet. LOL. We have calling cards and long distance plans. I think Webcams will be next.

Hope the move goes well.

Love you.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Busy as always.

This past weekend was crazy busy.
Becky came up with the dog and Benny on Friday night. She watched the kids while me and Glen went to see the Dark Knight ( awesome movie btw). It was a late movie and so we didn't get home until 2ish.
Up in the morning and then we had to hit the stores as we were having people over that night. We were gone for 5 hours!! Didn't want to be gone that long.
So we had our friends over.. we drank too much and ate too much but had a great time.
Up early again on Sunday morning, made breakfast for our guests and then the guys went to work in the basement.
I cleaned up the kitchen and sat down for a little bit, then out shopping again with the girls. I got the boys some of their school supplies and Helyn got a baby alive doll that drinks and sleeps.. its cute. She likes it.

So last night I was exhausted , but i was still up late.

The house was still a mess this morning, the kids were all in moods... I am ready for bed already.

Helyn had 4 time outs 1 after the other for yelling and hitting the other kids. Jorian had 3, yea... they act like brother and sister..

Yea for Quiet time. Liam and Dylan went to Lena's to play a board game with Kyle, Jorian is sleeping. Waylon is on the puter, ( I am on the lap top), Helyn, Aidan and Sierra are watching a movie and Emma is at the table with me colouring.
Oh and Ben.. is bouncing from the TV to the computer to colouring. LOL he can't choose what do do. ha ha.

Becky will be here soon to take Blue and Ben to Hamilton. Gonna miss her big time. She will be back next weekend to pack up and move... today they are going down to sign papers and get the house ready before they move their stuff.

So stressed... and tired.. when is my next vacation?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Another day...

The day is almost over.. the boys are still awake and watching their new show called Wipeout.
Liam screams and cheers and stuff.. its so cute.

Last night Aidan banged his eye on his dresser and we thought he was going to get a black eye this morning, but so far nothing (thank goodness).

Today was a good day for the most part.

Lena came and took the kids to the park for over an hour. She called me and asked what I was doing, I told her I was playing with the kids. She then told me she was taking them to the park ( she didn't ask, she told me LOL). I then said that Waylon and Emma were only here for an hour, and that Jorian was going to want a nap soon but all she said was that she would be back by noon and that I was going to take some time off ( LOL). I guess she wants to return the favor for me taking Kyle and Rylan for her a few days in the last week or so which isn't necessary but it was nice. I took advantage of it and gutted out the craft pantry and did some light cleaning that I can't do with kids underfoot.

OH I am so tired.. been running all day and I need a rest.

Monday, August 11, 2008

More pics of Riley and Kenz

Tina Emailed me some new pics of the kids.
Riley is a week and a half old now and she is getting bigger and bigger.
I love the pic of Kenz looking at her. Just adorable.








Some pics from the last couple days.
Helyn loves her bubble baths.
Liam acting all silly
Helyn sick and napping at Becky's house.

Hard getting back on Mondays.

Today was a hard day.

I was away pretty much all weekend and there was so much that needed to get done around the house, but I decieded to take it easy and just play with the kids.

We were supposed to have sports day today, but it was a little half assed ... We did some things, but not to the extent I wanted to have it. My kids were a little cranky so it made it hard for me to make it fun for Emily and Jorian. So we mostly just ran around the front yard having races and playing with toys.

I am hoping this weekend the dry wall can get done. I invited some friends over and hopefully we can put the guys to work. I still have to make it fly with Glen, but I don't think he will have a problem with it.
It would be great to have the basement done so all of the kids can go down there and their rooms can be functional again.
Glen was talking about hiring someone to help, but I think this may be the way to go. 4 guys in the basement getting it all done.

I have been making the boys do some homework pages again to get them back into the routine of school again. Its only 3 weeks away and I want to make sure they are on the ball. Aidan and I have been reading 2-3 books a day and today we started the pages. I am hoping his confidence will be better starting school. He is such a bright little guy with such imagination, I don't like it when he gives up.

Liam has been tempermental. I think I need to get him out with his friends more one on one. Aidan tends to tag along and I think he needs some space.

Helyn is good. She loves to play tea partys a lot and gets me involved. Its great to see her a little girlie. She does still love her cars, trains, busses and other things that move.. but she has a little mommy side which is nice to see.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Riley Annabel





There is a new addition to the Munro family for My brother in Law James and his partner Tina. My new niece Riley was born On August 1st at noon.
She was 9 pounds 2 ounces and is a really good baby.
She was born at home with help from the midwives and is very happy and healthy.
Here are some pics of her.

Not a good Saturday Outing.

Yesterday was Ben's 5th birthday party.
Me and the kids came in with Glen so we could go bowling and celebrate Ben's birthday.
Well... Helyn threw up on the O train, then Aidan threw up after Denny's breakfast.
Helyn then started spiking a fever. We went back to Becky's house and decided that Liam would still go to the party but I would keep Helyn and Aidan at the house.

Aidan said he was feeling better and he wanted to go, so we found him a ride and the boys went while I stayed back with Helyn.

I wasn't too happy about this situation, I really wanted to go to the party, but I did not want a sick little girl there.

We both took a nap and then everyone came back from the bowling alley. Turns out that Aidan started feeling sick again there and Becky missed most of the present opening because she had him in the bathroom. Sorry Becky.

So yea... not a great day.. I did however get to take a nap with the girl, so that was nice. :P

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Oh its almost Friday!!

yea!!!
One more day until the weekend.
This has been a taxing week.
I was spoiled last week.
Now its back to reality and a whole lot of kids to care for.
Its like they have been deprogrammed or something.
Back to square one with whining, hitting, talking back, manners gone.. etc.. you name it.

I could really use a drink tonight.

We had Birthday Party day on Tuesday as I had said. Wednesday was water day and lucky for me the rain held off and we had some fun. Today was bike day ( the kids love bringing their bikes so I thought it could be a standing day) and tomorrow is book day.

Liam gave me some grief today when I said we were having Valentine's day next week. He doesn't want to make Valentines. So I told him that Steven will be here ( his best bud) so they could go off and do their own thing while we do our exchange with the kids. What a boy.

Helyn has a new movie. She was into Curious George for the longest time and now its the Bee Movie. They are both cute movies. She loves having tea parties and playing with her toy animals. She is adorable and so grown up in the way she talks.

Aidan has been super sucky this week. I guess that is to be expected with us being away last week but his confidence is shot too. He said last night that he was stupid and this made my heart sink. Why would he think that? We never use the "s" word in the house. After some talking he said he was stupid because he can't read, so our plan of action is to get him reading more each day a few times a day for like 10 minutes each time, cut down on his TV and his video game time. He has been spending a lot of time at one of our neighbour's and he plays video games non stop there ( i only give them time during quiet time).
Glen thinks we should get him into a shrink for his low self confidence but I don't think we need to go that far.. yet. We will see how he fairs in a few weeks and if there is no improvement, we will talk to June about a referral.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Survived today

Today was my first day back to work since Vacation and I survived.
I lost Waylon for a whole 3 minutes today too.
We were coming back from Lena's and the 3 older boys ran ahead and I was trying to find them when I realized Waylon wasn't there.
Lena kept the younger ones with her and Liam and Kyle helped me find him. He was in Kyle's neighbour's back yard on her play set. Thank goodness the same things hold his attention and kept him there while we found him. Oh man.

His mom understood and we found him fast so, yea.. but I still feel bad for losing him. Or maybe I didn't lose him in his mind, he was in a safe place.. Anyways. I feel bad.

Today we made a cake and brought a portable party to our neighbour Lena for her 62nd birthday. I got her a present while we were out of town too and Helyn picked out a card for her on the weekend. The kids made her a banner too. It was cute.

Tomorrow is water day. WE are going to spend the day in the sprinkler and the wading pool. Please pray it doesn't rain.

I hope tomorrow I am over the hump for getting back to "normal" after our holiday. It was really rough today for everyone. The daycare kids came running in so excited today though, made me feel good to get extra long hugs and big smiles. It made me feel wanted.

Glen finally got his birth certificate in the mail and has his passport being processed. He is going to Colorado the first week of September for training for work. He is really excited about it and I am too. He has been wanting to go on these things for some time so now he can learn more.

So yea... don't know what else to update on. The kids are good. Trying to get back into routine again too I suppose. Helyn needed a few time outs today and Aidan and Liam needed a few reminders on how long video games could be played and how to talk to each other but not too bad.

So I will go to bed early tonight and hopefully get a good nights sleep.

Cheers.

Monday, August 4, 2008

We`re Home!!

Ahhhhhh.
It was a great time away.
We spent days on the beach, we went to Wonderland, to the drive in, drank, made some new friends and just plain ole relaxed.
It was amazing.

Imagine being able to wake up when you wanted and if you were tired, just taking a nap right where you were. It was bliss. Glen and I really reconnected again. You forget just how to enjoy being with a person when you are being pulled in so many different directions all at the same time.

I have to thank my sister and Lynn and Murray for taking care of the kids for us. They are the ones who made it possible. I know you are all really tired, but a Big thank you. The kids enjoyed their time with you too.

We came home a day early because we missed the kids so much. They missed us too. Helyn has not let us out of her sight all day. They boys were happy to be home, but have been out playing with their friends all day.

Anyways. We are home.

Here are some pics.

This was us before we left on Saturday morning




Sunset on our first night there


Us on the beach the second day

You can check out more photos on my flickr page

About Me

My photo

I am a working mother of three wonderful children and a supportive wife to my husband of nearly 15 years. 

I started this blog to find empowerment in daily things and to find ways to encourage my children to become enlightened adults who have a zest for life.