Not dead yet…

I have been very absent these days on this blog. The problem is: we’re moving. And as much as I love living in a Coop, the truth of the matter is, if you want things done right in a coop, you kinda have to do them yourself. So Zak has been spending a lot of time organizing the moves involved in this 5 family shuffle, and that means less time for everything else. Including blogging. Or breathing.

We haven’t even really started packing yet.

But right now, my baby is sleeping so I can go back to my nap time ritual. Mine, not hers. When my son is here, I usually spend the baby’s nap time concentrating on him while I can. But when Zak and him are out, like today, nap time becomes Me time. I brew a nice cup of tea, I sit down to sip it while eating a piece of chocolate… and I blog, or read blogs, or browse the Internet to figure out what we need for our new place… You know, fun stuff. Because I can’t cook or do dishes while the baby is sleeping or else I would wake her up.

Sure, I am cooking a squash for her to try, as well as boiling some beans for tonight’s dinner. But I still get to sit down for a few minutes. And that is a rare and very appreciated thing.

Who wants to decorate my appartment?

As I said previously, we are moving, and we know that some things will have to be replaced. Most likely the counter-tops and cabinets, probably the flooring. We will have the opportunity to pick what we want within the choices made available by the coop. And then there’s the paint. But we don’t know what to pick!

I have never decorated anything. There are just so many possibilities! When I look at them, my head hurts. I need an interior decorator! In the meantime, Zak has spent countless hours recreating our future unit in a decoration software that allows you to view the place in 3D. Quite interesting to see what it will be like with the furniture we own. But we still have to figure what colors will look good together.

I’ll just go to bed. Maybe when I wake up someone will have decided in our place?

An interesting conversation…

My son and I were looking for a big wooden block that is part of one of his games. I had seen it earlier during the day (being chewed on by the baby) so I knew it was somewhere near. But we couldn’t find it. My son claimed he ate it. Of course, I knew he was joking (it’s about 3 cm by 2 cm), but I decided to play along.

- Mmm… Well, if you ate it, you’re going to have to go fish it in your poop.
- Why?
- Well, if you ate it, you won’t digest it, so it will come out in your poop.
- And in my pee.
- No, it’s way too big for you to pee it. It wouldn’t go through your penis!
- Yes because I have a very, very large penis!

That’s when I knew I had to change subject…

We’re moving!

We live in an awesome housing Coop which has 1, 2 and 3 bedroom apartments. We moved into a 2-bedroom place almost 7 years ago because there was only Zak and I, and the rule here is you cannot have more bedrooms than people. But we always knew that eventually we would need bigger. So as soon as I found out I was pregnant the first time, we put our name on the waiting list for a 3-bedroom apartment. I had my son. Then I got pregnant again. A few people moved, but our name was not at the top of the list yet. Zak started talking about repainting, but I kept thinking it was silly since we were going to move – soon. When we bought a dishwasher, one of the issues was, is it worth hooking up a built-in dishwasher if we’re going to move soon? When we needed something new and didn’t have room for it, we kept thinking oh well, it will be tight but we are moving soon. Well, it has been over 4 years now that we’re on that waiting list expecting to move soon. And finally, our turn has arrived!

Unfortunately, it doesn’t mean that the kids can each have their room. The 3-bedroom apartments are strangely built, with two bedrooms upstairs and one bedroom downstairs with a window on the alley. I wouldn’t want my son by himself in this bedroom on a different floor from us, and I couldn’t be on a different floor from my daughter because she’s still a baby and still needs me at night. So we are going to keep her with us, and when they’re ready to be together we will probably give them the big bedroom and take the small one. But when they’re older, they can each have their bedroom. In the meantime, we will make the third bedroom a play room/guest room, which means that when we have visitors they won’t have to sleep in the living room anymore. Even more exciting, the 3-bedroom apartments have a washer/dryer hookup, so I will be able to wash diapers in the comfort of my own home instead of running to the laundry room. If we’re lucky, we might even have room for a deep freezer. But we’ll see. Maybe there won’t be that much room.

In the meantime, we have to do a major cleanup here and throw away a whole bunch of stuff. We accumulate way too much. We don’t need all that. The problem is, every time one of us says “Do we really need that?”, the other one responds “Maybe not, but really, that’s not going to make it or break it.” And we don’t get rid of anything. This time, though, we’re really going to try. It will be an expensive enterprise because the place is a bit more expensive and since it’s on the first floor it will be much colder. Plus there’s all those appliances to buy, curtains, extra furniture, etc. We won’t be getting as much sun, which we will sorely miss. But in the long run it will be worth it. It will be nice when potty-training my daughter not to have to run to the fourth floor when we’re playing outside and she suddenly needs to go. It will be nice for our son to be able to go play outside by himself, soon, because he won’t need a key to the elevator cage to go back home. We will have a bigger deck, which means we might even be able to set up the table and chairs we have – which end up folded on our deck most of the time because we run out of room in the house and store our crap there. We will also have a parking stall in the back which, although we don’t have a car, will be handy for when we have guests or when we rent a car.

All in all, I think it’s going to be great. It will just be crazy for a few months between the move, the trips we are planning, the baby who will be crawling and cruising and who still doesn’t sleep through the night, etc. But it means it will be done before I go back to work. Finally!

And just to show you how not superstitious I am… I wrote this post a few days ago, before it was confirmed that we would be offered the unit. It looked very likely and I was confident. I didn’t publish it, but it was written. And we still got the place!

My baby is eating!

We decided that it was time. Our baby is one week short of the recommended six months, but she’s ready for food. She has been trying to grab our glasses and utensils for a while. She can’t quite sit by herself yet, but she’s not floppy in her highchair anymore. She can support her head easily. And lately, I have had the feeling that she is not completely satisfied after a feed. She seems grumpy and she always seems hungry. So this morning she had her first taste of cereal.

To be fair, she also had banana three days ago when she pretty much lunged onto Zak’s snack. We let her have a few pieces. The guidelines are much more relaxed now than even three years ago when it comes to feeding. The community health nurses no longer recommend preparing purees at all, simply mashing soft foods. But cereal is still important because it has iron, and apparently that’s what is missing in a baby’s diet after 6 months.

It’s weird, though. I mean, I will never again produce as much milk as I do now. Which should make me happy, since I sometimes feel like a cow. But knowing that I am raising my last baby, I keep going through all of these nostalgic stages of “it’s the last time that…” I’ve already been through the “it’s the last time I have a newborn” stage. Now I’m done with having an exclusively breastfed baby. It’s good. It’s a step forward. But it’s also another tiny loss. Because as strange as it may sound to those who have never breastfed a baby, it is oddly satisfying to know that another human being, albeit a tiny one, receives its entire nourishment from you. Neither of my babies have had to have formula supplements. They relied on me, exclusively, for a year (collectively). Have you ever seen those T-shirts: “I make milk, what’s YOUR superpower”? Well, without calling it a superpower, it is definitely special. And when it works well, it can make you feel really good, and really important in the life of your little one.

Of course, I’m not done with breastfeeding. If my baby and my body will let me, I intend to keep at it for at least another 18 months. But it will gradually become less and less important in my baby’s diet, and more of a bonding and comforting ritual than a feeding relationship. I’ll miss it. I think. We’ll see.