Friday, March 28, 2014

Exploring new cutleries.

I made a noodle-based dish for supper yesterday, and gave Eleanor a fork to eat it with, which she was super indignant about. ('I'm not a dignant! I'm a girl!')


So I gave her some chopsticks per her request.


You pinch it...


Dangit.


You skewer it.


Oh hang it all, you use them for clacking.


Wednesday, March 26, 2014

I'm not even the most pregnant I've ever been.

I just want to complain about being pregnant for a sec, but I know how obnoxious that is so here are some pictures of Eleanor doing stuff to make up for it.


I'm at that stage of pregnancy where I spend most of my awake-in-bed time thinking about positions I'd be more comfortable it.


I'm at that stage of pregnancy where I can really only lie in two positions


and one of those is on my back, which the internet keeps telling me not to do


and one of those is on my side with an army of pillows, all of which I have to bring with me when I want to flip to the other side.


I also have to slide a hand under my stomach and flip myself, like a pancake.


Boots, you guys. BOOOOOOTS. Mine are murder to get off and on, but it snowed today, so boots for a while.


In short, I am uncomfortable in the way that you can only be uncomfortable when you know that you're going to continue to be, NAY, to become MORE UNCOMFORTABLE STILL, for another seven weeks. And that after that, you will be uncomfortable in other ways and also have this baby that never sleeps.


Good thing my kid is pretty alright.

Friday, March 21, 2014

It is spring now.

Big day yesterday, first day of spring and all that. I bought some daffodils on the way to Toddler Gym because my garden is still under snow, mom. (My sister's crocuses and things are up, is why she was asking.)


I only have the one vase, inherited from my grandmother, so I've kind of just put the rest of them IN things.


You know, around.


It feels so springy. Speaking of Spring Things, Eleanor's Muddy Buddy came in the mail shortly after we got home from Toddler Gym.


Excellent, I thought. We will put it through its paces after nap time. Come at us, puddles. But then Eleanor barfed (inexplicably, but in the bathroom at least) so we spent after-nap-time watching Robin Hood and eating toast


Today, the second day of spring, was back down to -20 WHICH IS NOT A TERRIBLE TEMPERATURE ESPECIALLY FOR LIKE A DAY OR TWO. It's just, all the puddles are ice, for now. You will have to wait your turn, Muddy Buddy.


SPEAKING of things coming in the mail, that is maybe the best thing about living far from home. Maybe the only good thing. Eleanor gets excited about mail in a major way: mine, hers, anyone's. My mother-in-law sent a Valentine's Day package, and it got here a few days early on a prohibitively cold morning when I was already thinking about SELLING ELEANOR ON EBAY and it wasn't even 11:00 am. But then suddenly, by the magic of mail, we had stickers and a new book and when Eleanor went down, I ate ALL the chocolates. Because I needed them.

This has been a good week for mail. Early this week, two maternity dresses arrived from the lovely Ara Jane, who sent them to me after I coveted one of them on her instagram. They are chic and wrap and short-sleeved and I am going to wear them to DEATH and then continue wearing them after this baby is born. I was going to take a picture of myself in one yesterday but then Eleanor barfed, and nobody wants to clean up barf wearing their best new dress.

The next day, a package arrived ADDRESSED TO ELEANOR which she gets super jazzed about, because she can recognize her own name. It was a new Snuggles, from her Tante Gillian and Unky Matt, to replace the one barfed on and bagged up and lost in Edmonton. She was SO GLAD TO SEE HIM.


'My Snuggles was lost,' she says. And I don't know if she means he was lost and then came back in the mail, or if she realizes that one of the Snuggleses has been missing, because WE didn't tell her. We're not sure she knows he's not people. Anyway, now I can go back to washing one of them periodically, thank the goodness.

Today being the second day of spring but not a day to do fun Spring Things in, we planted a few of our seeds.


I was sort of baffled last year when my plants actually made food. I will be boggled again if these seeds turn into plants. IT BLOWS MY TINY MIND.


You are so far not terrible, Spring. But you could step up your game.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Waking up ugly and not caring AT ALL.

Saskatoon in the summer, fall, winter, and probably late spring, is almost embarrassingly pretty. All bridges and a river and tree-lined streets and cobbled paths, I mean, come on.


Early spring is, I'm telling you right now, not her best look. All the non-major roads, which have never been paved and which have been absolute skating rinks all winter, look like this.


They are basically skating rinks with enormous soggy divots and water-logged potholes now. Driving down our back alley is terrifying, treacherous death. Everything else is either being slowly revealed in a riot of dog poop and garbage, or heaped up with dirty snow.


And YET, everyone you meet on the street (and everyone is on the street these days) is all, WHAT A BEAUTIFUL DAY, LOOK HOW LOVELY. Eleanor is like, I love you so much, hideous park full of dirty snow and soggy sand!


This afternoon it was 4 degrees, so we walked down to the actual skating rink. Alas, outdoor skating rinks turn to swamps in a prolonged thaw.


So we turned around and stomped all the way back home.


EVERYONE loves to see a toddler in bee boots having a hoe down in a puddle.


We petted, without a word of exaggeration, every puppy on the way. My phone died, and I was like, Don't do anything TOO cute for the rest of the way home. Like find a stick and then chase me with it, adorably. Or ask the stick if you can hold its hand, and then make it walk beside you ('walk, walk, walk'). Or tuck it into the crook of your elbow, so that it branches above you. 'I have a umbrella, to keep the rain safe.'


Monday, March 10, 2014

We are melting.

It got up to 3 degrees yesterday afternoon. Even Wednesday, when we got home from Edmonton, it was still -25, and now it is POSITIVE DEGREES FOR PARTS OF THE DAY. We went ice skating.


The enormous fancy hotel downtown floods the field next to them, and some local corporations fund it. The skate is free, the skate rentals are free, it's free to sit by either the outdoor or indoor fire pit. I imagine that on colder days, someone sets up a hot-chocolate stand and does bumping business.


Even on a blistering Sunday afternoon in March, when the rink was PACKED, there were enough skates of all sizes that we found skates for everyone.


Not for me. I'm allowed to beg off things, because pregnant. I'm feeling like a ship in full sail these days, and I still have more than two months to go. So Joel took Eleanor out for her first ever spin around the ice. 'I'm skating wiv dad! Look at my ice skaters!'


By which she meant 'ice skates.' She was enormously proud of herself (and, ok, a little bit teary with frustration at a few points. 'It's too slippery for Ahl-nor!' Meaning 'Eleanor.' Meaning her). But mostly she was grimly and grinningly determined.


Free skating is a huge boon when you know you're only going to be out there for twenty minutes. The weather was too nice to be believed, so we went for a walk by the river. Eleanor petted so many dogs she almost couldn't see straight. To a great dane she says, You are a horse!


We went to the park this morning, it was only -5 and not even noon. Eleanor hasn't seen that park since last October. She was SHOUTY with delight.


I never got super excited about spring in BC; the rain just fell at slightly warmer temperatures and maybe some flowers sprouted. But I am DELIRIOUS right now. The weather-hardened side of me is braced for at least one more freeze, if not the perilous -40 of last month, at least the discouraging -25 of most of this winter. But the White Witch's dwarf lurks somewhere nearby, whispering 'This is no thaw. This is spring.'


Now I'm sitting on the couch while Eleanor naps the long nap of the recently-outdoors, and listening to the snow runoff rush down my drain pipe, and exulting. Our street is full of puddles and I have big plans for this afternoon.


They involve bee boots.

Saturday, March 08, 2014

Edmonton is terrible.

Where were we. Oh yes, Eleanor had just barfed all down herself and there we were, trying to wipe barf off of a sad toddler and a car seat and a diaper bag full of bathing suits, in -20 weather, by the side of the road.

We took her back to our hotel and I gave her a bath and then Joel hosed down the car seat in the shower and we propped it up over the heater so it would dry, and I fed Eleanor some cheerios and put her down and then Joel snuck out for Vietnamese food, which we ate sitting half in the closet.


The next morning we went to The Sugar Bowl for brunch, and since Eleanor had been grazing off our plates for a few days AND hadn't pooped in same, I got her a bowl of oatmeal, marking the first time we have paid for food for her in a restaurant. I made her order it herself, and, though she doesn't look it here, she was thrilled to have her own restaurant meal.


Then we went to the Muttart conservatory, which was...I mean, it was plants. And EXPENSIVE. So....berrrgh.


Eleanor finally pooped while we were at the conservatory, for which I thank the oatmeal, but I had taken the wipes out of the diaper bag at the hotel room to help wipe barf off of things. Seriously everything, stop going wrong.

We spent the afternoon at the mall, doing mall-stuff. We were all pretty bagged by this point, and Joel needed mittens, so we poked around looking for mittens and hiding in clothing racks


until Eleanor and I got bored and wandered off to that old staple, The Disney Store.


Needless to say, Joel did not find mittens. Earlier in the trip, he would have found mittens, but we were no longer in the Things Going Well stage.

Back at our hotel room, I bagged up the now-dry-but-still-barfyish bathing suits, Eleanor's outfit, and Snuggles, and tied the bag up tight to keep the smell in. THIS WILL BE IMPORTANT LATER because then Joel dropped a glass and it broke everywhere and we had to call housekeeping to come clean our room.

We went back to our previous night's intended destination, the Louisiana Purchase, only to find that they were having a private party for Fat Tuesday and were closed to the public. Foiled again. So we returned to our place of brunch and I had chicken and waffles in lieu of pancakes.


Literally the only good thing to happen to us that day. Maple butter, you guys.

We got back to our room and remarked on how good it smelled now that the garbage can full of barfy wet wipes was empty and the bag full of barfy clothes was all tied up and OH SHIT because the bag was gone. Gone. My sinking heart. We called the front desk and they said to call housekeeping in the morning and I shed a few tears and we went to bed because sometimes you need to put an end to a day.

The next morning, Joel took Eleanor out and I phoned housekeeping, SURE that my bag of clothes had been thrown out by accident, only to find that yes, it probably had, and the garbage trucks had come that morning. Eleanor's plaid pants that go with everything, her long-sleeved blue shirt that does likewise, Snuggles the Second (thank goodness for Snuggles: Original Sauce. Always have a back-up), Eleanor's bathing suit with the fishies, Joel's best board shorts, and my extremely expensive tangerine bathing suit with the white polka dots that I justified spending all of my birthday money on when I was pregnant with Eleanor because I was probably going to be pregnant again, and would wear it and wear it and wear it and it was adorable. REMEMBER HOW ADORABLE IT WAS?


And I bought it from a boutique in Victoria in 2011, so I am never going to be able to replace it. There are so many more horrible things that could have happened, and I keep reminding myself that it was just THINGS we lost, but every so often I have a pang of sadness for that bathing suit.

The hotel manager is going to reimburse me for the cost of a new suit, as well as comp our trip to cover the other items. If Eleanor hadn't barfed, if I hadn't tied the bag so tightly and left it in the corner, if Joel hadn't broken the glass, if the garbage trucks hadn't come that morning.

We gave the Louisiana Purchase one last try on our way out of town, and I had the Satisfaction Platter and it was all the jambalaya and in-house sausage and cajun shrimp and creole sauce that I wanted it to be, thank goodness, because I don't think I could have handled another disappointment.


Eleanor was hilarious on the drive home, as always.