Saturday, November 19, 2016

Things Don't Get Easier, Only Different.

Recently a few friends of mine have had babies, and it got me thinking about being a new mom. Also, my son turned two and I've been reflecting about those first few months. For me, it was such an overwhelming experience. Not only was I learning how to truly take care of another human for the first time, but the personal changes in my lifestyle were hard to accept.

New Baby, New Mom
Looking back now, there are times I actually wish I had a new baby instead of a toddler. They were so easy... sleep, eat, cry, coo, repeat... right? But when I was in it, it wasn't easy. The lack of sleep was severely impactful. Feeling like I was doing everything wrong when I couldn't get him to stop crying was soul crushing. Barely finding the time to eat, shower, or brush my teeth made me feel like I had lost my identity; My only purpose was to be a mom... and that was hard.

During the first months of being a mom I never thought I would look back in two years and think that time was easy. And it reality, it wasn't -- because I was learning an immense amount of shit in a very short amount of time. It's like when you look back at a relationship and only remember the good times even thought there was a lot of strife. Maybe this happens for an evolutionary reason; so we forget how bad it was and want to procreate again. At any rate, while I certainly don't know everything about raising a baby now, I ended up figuring out a system and process that worked for me, and things got easier. But here's the catch: as those things got easier, other crazy hard new things began to develop. And there I was, clueless again.

I'm sure if you asked older mothers, this is just the nature of raising a child. You finally figure out one milestone and the next comes and kicks you in the ass. This is why I say things don't get easier, they just get different. This is why looking back I remember more good than bad; because I figured those early trials out, and they don't seem so challenging anymore. The upcoming unknowns and the ones I'm currently in the thick of seem much more daunting than the stuff I have already made it through.

Having a toddler is a lot easier, and a lot harder than having a baby. He can tell me what's wrong, he sleeps through the night, he's super funny, and he has basic needs that I understand how to fulfill - which are all great. But he also expects fairly constant entertainment with parent participation, and the games he enjoys at this stage I personally find so boring and hard to get into. He is starting to do bad things like hit, yell, and throw stuff when he's mad, and if I don't watch him for one minute you better believe he's into something he shouldn't be.

I love my son, and I love that he challenges me every day. I feel like a bad mom when I admit to finding his stages a struggle, but the reality is going through these periods with him do make me a better person. It's this perspective I try to keep when I am tired of it all. Being a mom has made me learn more about myself than I ever thought possible, and while it's hard, it's a process that only expands my knowledge and perception. For this, I am grateful for all the daily struggles.

Monday, October 3, 2016

12 Cool Things To Do With The Family In Calgary This Fall

The weather is getting brisk but that doesn’t mean the fun stops in Calgary! There are so many cool things going on around the city that are perfect for the whole family. Calgarians know that fall is the best season of the year (especially after our stormy summer) to get out and about. Our city is a great place to explore the outdoors, check out feature events, and take in some culture, and this fall there are so many opportunities to expand your horizons. If you are at a loss for what to do, check out this list of 12 cool things to do in Calgary this fall, and break up your usual routine!

Calgary Stampede Community Fall Fair
Get the kids up early and head to the free pumpkin spice pancake breakfast at the Calgary Stampede Community Fall Fair on October 15th. The kids will have a blast with the potato sack races, wagon rides, and pumpkin decorating. Enjoy some local music and entertainment and browse through what the local vendors have to offer. The fair runs from 10am - 2pm at Enmax Park.

Disney In Concert: Tale As Old As Time
The Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra is putting on a Thanksgiving extravaganza featuring some of the most beloved Disney music alongside the classic film clips. Disney In Concert: Tale As Old As Time features songs from movies such as Frozen ,The Little Mermaid, and Beauty and the Beast among others. It is sure to delight the senses of the whole family. The concert is on October 7th and 8th at Jack Singer Concert Hall.

Pumpkin Patches and Corn Mazes
Experience fall festivities with the kids by visiting a pumpkin patch or corn maze. Calgary has so many choices for these classic fall activities and Family Fun Calgary has already created a huge list for you to decide which one is best for your family. Get into the fall spirit, get lost in some corn, and go grab a pumpkin for some added colour in your life!

Fall Ice Cream Flavours
Talk about cool, it doesn’t get much tastier than Fiasco Gelato’s fall and Thanksgiving ice cream flavours! Bring the kids down to the cafe for a frozen scoop of pumpkin pie, and indulge in a mulled wine gelato yourself. There are over 20 fall favours on their menu, meaning there is a perfect combo for everyone. The Thanksgiving flavours are only available until supplies last, so get yours before they are gone!

Ghost Tours Fright Night Festival
Do you love getting creeped out? Over the last 2 weekends in October, Calgary Ghost Tours puts on the Fright Night Festival at the Alexandra Centre in Inglewood. Check out vendors, mystical psychics, entertainment, and more. Admission is $5 or $10 for all 4 nights.

13th Annual Pumpkin Festival
This is no ordinary pumpkin festival, unless you are used to seeing a 500 pound pumpkin being dropped from a crane onto a car! Blue Grass Nursery is holding its 13th annual Pumpkin Festival on Saturday October 8th from 11am-3pm. Other highlights include a Cinderella pumpkin coach ride, a petting zoo, and food trucks. Admission is by donation and all proceeds go to the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation.

ILLUMINASIA Lantern & Garden Festival
It’s getting darker out earlier and one way to take advantage of the nightfall is by attending the ILLUMINASIA Lantern & Garden Festival at the Calgary Zoo. In addition to the many Chinese lanterns lighting up the pathways, visitors are encouraged to check out the Chinese entertainment and multicultural programming. The festival runs until October 16th.

Get in the Halloween mood with Alberta Ballet’s production of Dracula. Special effects will change your perception of what a ballet looks like, and lavish costumes transport you to a charming village in Transylvania. Dracula himself even wears a 23-foot long cape! The enchanting performance hits the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium from October 27th- 29th.

One Man Epic Trilogy Adventures
This fall the Pumphouse Theatre presents the internationally acclaimed One-Man Star Wars and One-Man Lord Of the Rings performed by Charles Ross. Prepare to be stunned as you are guided through the trilogy of your choice in just over 60 minutes of enthralling action. The show is recommended for fans of all ages and costumes are encouraged! Check the website for show dates and times.

Studio Bell
This summer Canada’s national music centre opened up, and now that the weather is getting cooler it’s the perfect time to take the family and explore what it has to offer! Check out various exhibitions and featured events, as well as the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame Collection, and the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame! There is so much to do you will likely need to make a couple trips to this impressive building.

Courtesy: Wordfest

With over 40 events around the city, Wordfest is one of the highlights of autumn in Calgary. Not only are there big names speaking in various venues, but the Wordfest Youth program also travels around schools in the community to encourage a love of reading. Wordfest runs from October 7th-16th and features over 90 artists.

Mamma Mia!
Broadway Across Canada visits Calgary November 1st-6th with the production of Mamma Mia! If you are an ABBA fan you will love how classic songs are intertwined into an amazing and emotional story-line. Singing along and dancing in the aisles is encouraged. The catchy tunes make for a great show to take the older kids to. I went with my mom a few years ago and it was a blast! Tickets are on sale now.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

15 Things That Can Go Wrong at an Ultrasound

The 20 week ultrasound is such an exciting event. It's at this appointment you can first find out the gender of your baby, and learn much more about them physically. It's a time of enlightenment and anticipation, but it can also be a moment where your world comes crashing down around you. In this ultrasound a lot can be discovered, and while every parent hopes for the best, sometimes the worst is found...

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

15 Thoughts All Women Have In The First 3 Months Of Pregnancy

It seems fairly commonplace to keep your pregnancy a secret for the first 3 months of your pregnancy. During this time there are so many moments where you want to tell the world what you are going through! I's a confusing time, intense sensations are all around you, and you have to lie to everyone you know! 

It can help knowing many women go through the same thing, and it's pretty funny to read the thoughts that we all think but can't share with anyone. These are the 15 thoughts all woman have in early pregnancy when we can't quite share the news...

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Name Calling

Cheerios scattered on the floor
reminding me of my inadequacies.
A sinking feeling in my stomach.
The boy's in bed and I'm relieved.

I'm not cut out for this.
But it's something I can't quit.
I'm a bad mom.
Too bad. So sad.