Charlie’s First Two Weeks

July 24, 2017 § Leave a comment

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We have officially been a family of four for two weeks now! We already love Charlie so much that it seems like he’s been here for a lot longer, although we are still regaining our footing and figuring things out with this big change. The two biggest things we’re adjusting to are Henry’s new role as a big brother and the fact that we are pretty much bursting out of our apartment! _DSC7934

Henry has been used to having my full attention for his whole life since I work from home and he only has a babysitter part time so he’s had his ups and downs. Whenever I can, I make sure to put Charlie down or hand him to Nick so that I can just sit on the floor and play with Henry for as long as possible, giving him my full attention. I still do bedtimes with him too, which seems to really help. Despite the good and bad days, we are proud of how welcoming he’s been with Charlie. He just wants to hug him ALL THE TIME – sometimes a little too enthusiastically ;)

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Charlie spends most of his time sleeping, eating, and as Henry likes to make sure to point out, pooping. He’s already gone from his birth weight of 7 lbs 14 oz to over 8 lbs 8 oz (as of last Tuesday)!

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Charlie’s already been going out and about with us and has also met a few close friends like Unckie Paul!

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My parents came to visit this past weekend to meet Charlie and visit us all. _DSC7932_DSC7948

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They also took Henry to our amazing neighbourhood toy store and told Henry he could pick out one thing, whatever he wanted! Of course he chose an enormous and loud, but pretty cool truck crane.

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Nick has been working from home for the past two weeks and will be home with us for another two weeks. With no family living around us plus Henry’s big adjustment to our new addition, it’s so helpful that he’s doing this. If it weren’t for my amazing husband and awesome sitter, I don’t know what I’d do!

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The sleep deprivation isn’t as bad as it was with Henry, mostly because between already having a kid who goes through good and bad stages of sleeping, plus not sleeping well during the last trimester of my pregnancy anyways, I am kind of used to bad sleeps at this point. Also, as a second-time parent, I know that everything is a phase and in just a few months, things will get a lot better. Also getting up three or four times a night would be a lot harder without that cute face to look at!

Road Trip to Canada

September 8, 2015 § Leave a comment

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I don’t know if you noticed, but we were away in Canada at my parents’ comfy cottage last week! Here’s some photos and commentary if you’re interested in our first road trip with Henry…

After renting a car from Laguardia airport, we left our apartment Friday morning to do the first half of the 10 hour drive. Henry hadn’t been in a car since December and was pretty much horrified at the thought of getting into his car seat. After much encouragement from us and even our doorman, we gave him some cheezies to munch on and he gave into a nap.

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We stopped in Syracuse for the night and met up with our friend Matt, who took us to the State Fair that evening. Henry got to see goats, llamas, pigs, and chickens, and run around the bright lights and giant stuffed animals. He was very excited about the blimp floating over the fair and got to eat salty, deep-fried chicken fingers (probably much more delicious than the multigrain breaded organic kind from home ;)).

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We left our hotel Saturday morning and arrived in Oshawa for my twin niece & nephew’s first birthday party that afternoon. It worked out very well that we got to see my sister’s family before heading to my parents’ and Henry got to enjoy running around with other kids (and toy cars) before spending another 1.5 hours in the car. P1030849

Henry seemed to settle into the cottage faster than ever once we arrived, even playing us some guitar and enjoying our applause.

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Since we were on vacation, we let Henry stay up late and in turn, he’d sleep later than usual in the mornings. One day, he even slept until 10:00! (He was up for an hour and a half in the middle of the night, BUT STILL.)

Our days at the cottage were glorious. Grandpa cuddles…

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Enjoying a new selection of toy cars and tiny plastic animals… P1030853

Feeding chipmunks and blue jays peanuts…

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Visits from family…

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Cousin craziness…

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Serious sandbox time…

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Visiting Fenelon Falls’ beach and ice cream shops…

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Boat rides…

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And one day, my dad arranged for us to visit the local fire hall. Having a grandpa on city council has its benefits!

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A huge thank you to my parents for taking care of us for a week! And thanks to all my family who came for a visit. It was so great to see you!

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Now to plan our Christmas road trip…

Visitor Season

June 2, 2015 § Leave a comment

After a very wintry winter, it’s finally a summery spring and the visitors have been coming in droves! Every day, I see what I assume are parents of Brooklynites being led around Greenpoint and taken out to cute restaurants for brunch.

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This past weekend, Nick and I enjoyed an evening with one of our favourite couples/fellow parents, Kate and Bryan. We ate a ton of Indian food and had a few drinks afterwards at Habitat, so that Bryan could watch the hockey game while the ladies caught up.

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The next morning, my parents arrived!

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Despite having not seen his grandparents since Christmas, Henry jumped right in to giving them hugs, kisses, and playing with them. He’s usually a very cautious boy who takes a minute to warm up to any visitor. Maybe it’s the Pinhole Press family picture book we made for him or maybe he can just tell they’re important people – or maybe he just remembers them! Either way, he knew they were special enough to bypass all the usual courting he requires.

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We all went out to lunch at our favourite neighborhood sandwich spot, Eagle Trading Company, then went to the playground so Henry could show Grandma and Grandpa how good he is at playing in the splash pad.

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Henry usually NEVER wants to hold hands, by the way.

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My Mom is an amazing Grandma – she got Henry to lie still with her on the couch for quite a while by rubbing his back while he held his school bus. It was very sweet.

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On Sunday we had lunch at Brooklyn Label before they had to head to the airport. Henry enjoyed both his grandparents’ company and the ceiling fan overhead.

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Although Sunday’s storm gave them some serious delays (and cancellations), I’m so glad they came to visit. Next time we see them will be in August, when we will take our first road trip with Henry to drive to their cottage!

Thanksgiving in Canada

October 15, 2014 § Leave a comment

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Last week, we flew up to Canada to spend my birthday/Nick’s birthday/Thanksgiving with my family!

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Sure, waking up at 5am and traveling for 7 hours wasn’t the funnest birthday activity, but the payoff was HUGE. We spent a quiet evening with my parents at their beautiful cottage and I ate 3 delicious birthday cupcakes, made with love by my Mom.

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None of this cupcake actually made it inside Henry’s mouth.

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Henry enjoyed running all over and exploring my parents’ place. Last time he was there, he was only crawling!

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On Saturday, we went to my sister’s place in Oshawa for Thanksgiving and met these two tiny babies!

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My Grandparents and brother & sister-in-law also met us there. My brother brought me a much-appreciated birthday gift: two giant Dairy Milk bars! (Canadian chocolate just puts American chocolate to shame.)

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For the first time, Henry got to run around with his older cousins. No one complained about him being boring this time!

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In fact, I think Henry got much more attention than he ever expected!

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Kids have been a presence at family gatherings for years now, but this time, it was like a kid explosion! Good thing they are absolutely adorable.

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My Dad needs a bigger lap for all his grandsons!

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These two just might be coming down with baby fever soon. I hear it’s contagious.

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My sister Jenn is doing an incredible job at raising four kids (FOUR!!!). I asked her if she ever loses track of where everyone is and she admitted that yes, sometimes she does. You can’t really blame her – the twins are the quietest people in the house!

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Although Henry didn’t sleep properly any of the nights we were there (he became my bed buddy), it was so great to get this trip in to see my family and meet my new niece and nephew. See you again at Christmas, Canada! Hopefully this time with more rest ;)

Grandma’s 80th Birthday Party

July 29, 2014 § 2 Comments

This year, my Grandma is turning 80! My parents were generous enough to offer their beautiful home as a venue for all my family to get together for a giant party to celebrate her. Nick, Henry, and I were so happy to be able to come too!

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We arrived Wednesday evening and despite a rocky start with sleep, Henry had THE BEST TIME.

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He loved being outdoors, seeing too many trees to even try to touch them all, the river, boat rides, and having so much room to crawl.

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And of course he loved spending so much time with family.

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We spent 4 days at the cottage and 1 day in Oshawa with my sister. Unfortunately, we had no time to get to Toronto to see friends, but I was so happy to have a visit from my friend Sara! (Also pictured: my cousin’s cute and friendly son, Kieran.)

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Sara and I have been friends for over 10 years, but she moved to Scotland about 6 years ago and got married last year. She was in town visiting her parents with her husband, David, and friend, Hana. It was so great to catch up and enjoy her new Canadian-Scottish accent ;)

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Later that evening, we had a campfire, complete with Grandpa selfies.

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The next day, Henry had his first ride on my parents’ pontoon boat. I didn’t think I’d be able to put his robot costume-sized infant life jacket on him without a fight, but he didn’t care – SO MANY TREES!!!! For the rest of the day, all he wanted was to go down by the river and look at everything. He is already more outdoorsy than his parents.

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Soon, more babies arrived! New parents Jeremy and Gioia brought an adorable 3 month old Dante.

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Henry continued to love life, chowing down on PC baby food (added sugar! woooo!) and yelling to join the dinner conversation.

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We had dinner at the longest table, sitting about 32 people. We enjoyed heartfelt tributes to my Grandma by my mom, aunt, and uncle. Tears were shed!

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Then the cupcakes came out. Of course, the great-grandchildren that knew how to blow out candles lent a helping hand.

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It was a really great weekend, filled with family. Unfortunately, we were missing the Martin family – my sister is too pregnant to travel that far away from her hospital. Twins come quickly!

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So on Sunday morning, we packed up and said our goodbyes so we could say hello to Jenn and her family. And one great big HELLO to that BELLY!

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I don’t know how she is doing it, but she looks absolutely fantastic and is still up and moving!

Henry is just about old enough to actually play with his cousins. It’s a pretty heartwarming sight. Of course, he is still a baby so at one point Jillian declared “I’m bored of Henry now.” I’m both looking forward to and dreading that honesty once Henry can talk. haha.

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What a great trip. I wish it was longer, but we were very happy to get home yesterday. Happy birthday to my Grandma and lots of love to my whole family!

Henry’s First Two Weeks

November 18, 2013 § 1 Comment

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We have officially entered our third week with Henry and we are finally getting into the groove of things. Almost as soon as we got home from the hospital, my parents arrived and my Mom stayed to help out for Henry’s first two weeks at home.

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It was so incredible to have her here, helping out, cooking, cuddling Henry so Nick and I could sleep, and giving newborn advice. She came with me to his first two pediatrician appointments and would wake up at 7:30 am every day so I could get a few hours of sleep every morning before Henry’s next feeding. I don’t have to tell anyone who’s had a baby how nice that is!

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This weekend, my Dad and sister flew here to visit with us and they all left together this afternoon. It was so nice that Jenn could meet Henry while he was so young too!

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Auntie Jennie is basically the best aunt there ever was. She gave him a baby massage today and for the two nights she was here, she fed him a bottle while I got 6 hours of sleep in a row!

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Henry (and Nick and I) got so much love these past few weeks. It was sad to see my family leave, but Nick and I are both really looking forward to seeing how our new little family operates on its own. We know there will be some bumps, but after having so much help for two weeks, we’re feeling so much more confident. The three of us can’t thank my family enough for all their help. We love you!

A Visit + A Baby Shower

June 24, 2013 § 1 Comment

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Last week, I flew up to the Toronto area to spend 6 days with my family. This was my last long trip to Canada, while I’m still allowed on planes.

I spent two days with my sister and her family in Oshawa, and the second of those two was my first ever shower (besides, you know, the kind with water)! Jenn and my Mom threw me a baby shower where a few family members and some of my best friends came to play games, eat food, and visit with me. Since I don’t like being the center of attention, I wasn’t sure how it would be, but I loved it. It was so great to have some of my most favourite people all together in one room to celebrate my baby-to-be.

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I was so happy to finally meet my friend Joe and Dori’s adorable son, Rowan…

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…who was, strangely enough, dressed exactly the same as my nephew Ben.

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Thanks to everyone who came out, especially the boys who hung around and waited for the BBQ to start!

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Of course, Julia couldn’t leave without us taking belly photos. I can’t believe she only has two months to go!

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I spent Monday to Friday at my parents’ cottage in Fenelon Falls. It was mostly pretty chilly, but we had a few nice sunny days (perfect for building chipmunk houses with Grandpa).

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My Grandparents came to visit and stayed for a campfire and sleepover. My Grandpa got wild and spit sambuca into the fire. My Dad called him Gene Simmons.

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My family really is the best. Thanks for a great visit, everyone!

Parents Come To Greenpoint

November 11, 2012 § 1 Comment

This weekend, for the first time since Nick and I were married, my parents came to visit us in Brooklyn!

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And although they’ve come to visit us three times now, this was the first time they were able to be here with no agenda, no plans, and not have to even venture into Manhattan. It was so nice to show them our neighbourhood and give them an idea of how we live here.

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They arrived Friday evening, so we made dinner at home and hung out on the couch, drinking a bottle of wine from my favourite neighbourhood wine shop, just talking. On Saturday, after a bagel breakfast, we walked to Williamsburg and had lunch at Smorgasburg. I took my Mom to Dalaga (my favourite!) where she got to buy a cute sweater and scarf. We had a tasty dinner at Habitat and spent another night in, chatting on our comfy couch that has convinced them they need a sectional for their cottage ;)

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This morning, we had brunch at Brooklyn Label and walked around Greenpoint, then to McCarren Park and back. It was such a beautiful, warm Fall day!

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Since I got my sense of humour from them, I knew they’d appreciate our “Live Chicken Laughter” sign.

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They should be landing back home in Toronto right about now. Thanks for coming to visit, Mom & Dad! We hope you liked Greenpoint and that you come back again real soon.

Jamaica

February 19, 2012 § 3 Comments

I’ve been quiet this past week because I’ve been lucky enough to get away on holiday with Nick and my parents! How did I end up in the caribbean with my Canadian parents you might wonder? They were going to come visit us in New York in October, then it got pushed to November, then we realized we’d see each other for Christmas, then we decided let’s all have a vacation and meet somewhere warm – Jamaica!

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Nick and I arrived on Sunday, after flying on a plane half-full of babies. Since when do babies get to go to Jamaica on holiday?

It took us a few days to settle down and really relax – it must be the New Yorkers in us. We eventually had the realization that while in Jamaica…

You eat:

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You swim:

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You lie on the beach:

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You drink beer or rum intermittently from 10am on:

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Sometimes you visit the nude beach on the island:

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Were we really nude? That’s for us to know and you to find out.

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(We weren’t.)

The resort we stayed at was fantastic – the employees were so friendly and genuinely happy to be at work every day. There were activities every day and night and although most of the time we just did our own thing, we did watch their “Jamaican Elvis” show after Nick was recruited to be one of Elvis’ bodyguards.

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One of my favourite things about the vacation had to be that my parents were there too. Also, the food was surprisingly tasty, peacocks and wild kitties roamed the resort, and our hotel room got Toronto stations CityTV and CBC!

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Getting a tan in February is also a nice bonus.

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Thanks for a great week, Jamaica!

To see all my Jamaica photos, check out my Flickr.

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