Thursday, September 11, 2014

House tour - Part 1

I've been meaning to do this post of our new home for awhile now.  At this point, eight and half months of living in it probably doesn't count as a new home anymore!

We took possession in January of this year.  (Btw I don't recommend moving in January to anyone living in Eastern Canada climate.  Everything was dark, snowy, cold and crazy.  Not a fun experience.  Especially 6 months pregnant.)

Although I love this house for its charm and creative potential, I still don't feel "at home" 8 months moved in.  My husband and I have actually discussed on and off the possibility of moving again.  I know, crazy.  If we do, you can be sure it won't be in January.

It's not that I don't love this home.  We bought it because we fell in love with it, obviously.  But after having my two feet in it, I am learning things about myself which at the time I didn't realize were important to me.  The best way to describe what I'm feeling is that it simply doesn't feel like home.  The flow isn't right for us.

I struggled with my feelings for months before telling hubby.  Buying a home is one of the biggest decisions of our lives, right?  Right.  And I feel like I screwed up.

Part of me feels VERY guilty, not only for having possibly screwed up the biggest decisions of our lives, but mostly because some people don't even have home :(  Like, what am I complaining about.  Put in perspective, my problems are minor.  I am grateful for what I have and I do thank God every day.  I just hope that one day I will feel at home, whichever way that is meant to happen.

Front entrance 
As you can see there is no carpet.  My (rescued) dogs will pee on anything that looks like a carpet, so for now, it's just easier to leave the entrance without one.  That's Lila the pug, right there.

Living room - this is where we spend most of our time as a family. 

I have a love/hate relationship with this kitchen.  Visually, it's adorable.  Functionally, not so much.  I do enjoy the two-way staircase that goes into the kitchen on this side, and to the front entrance on the other side.  And the Ikea cabinets (right) that we put in have definitely helped make this kitchen more functional.

Dining room
When we bought the house, this was my favourite room!  I could visualize myself spending time in there, feeding my baby and eating with my family.  Unfortunately, it hasn't worked out that way.  It is separated from the kitchen and I'm really missing that open concept where I can interact with people while I cook.  Still pretty though.

Master bedroom  
This is my favourite room in the house.  It's very cozy.  It's where I can unwind and where I feel the most at home.

I also love our washroom.  How can we not love a bath like that!  It's also where I laboured for the first part of Kaid's birth.  (We eventually made it out to the hospital with our midwife.)

Nursery - Kaid's room
This is my 2nd favourite room.  I spend a lot of time in here with the baby.  It's a large and bright room.  The colour we chose for the wall, Benjamin Moore "silver satin", is just perfect.

Boys' washroom
This washroom has not been renovated, but I still like it a lot.   It's a smaller bath, which is PERFECT for baby, with a standing shower (great for the teenager). 

View from our front porch
Our front porch is lovely.  We've certainly enjoyed sitting out there this summer.  My only complaint is the noise coming from an adjacent main road.  I didn't realize how much noise could bother me until we moved here.

We have a great backyard.  It's large and has lots of potential.  The dogs love it.

Not shown are the teenager's bedroom, a smaller half-bathroom on the main floor, and the unfinished attic (a great space that we will use to create a family den should we decide to stay long-term).

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

My new part-time job... that never happened

In my last post about how our life has taken a totally different turn (read post here), I also made mention that I found the "perfect part-time job". 

The job was a receptionist position in a spa.  Fifteen hours a week (leaving me lots of time with my baby), this job required me to share positive energy with clients in a beautiful and peaceful environment. 

To me, that sounded like a perfect job for a mom who wants to stay home as much as possible with baby.

I put my best face (and outfit) forward and went in for my first 3-hour training session.

 There was so much to learn (do I really have the energy to do this?).  Every time a client came in I felt anxiety.  I had no extra positive energy to share!  It just didn't feel right. 

So this won't work out either :(  Thank goodness for a supportive and understanding husband.  We could use some extra income right now.

For the first time in a long time, I can say that I don't know where I'm going and what I'm doing.  Maybe I'm having a mid-life crisis (I am 37 after all!)

Mid-life crisis and a baby... perhaps I should write a book.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Life is filled with change & growth

I read a quote lately that went something like "A person who views the world the same as she did many years ago has wasted many years of life."

Boy oh boy am I ever facing this life lesson right now.

This summer I haven't just been taking care of my newborn son. I've also been ironing out my resume, putting together cover letters and applying for full-time work. This has been our plan for the past two years while I was finishing my Translation degree.  Even when we unexpectedly got pregnant last year, we kept going and thought this was the best plan in the world.

A couple of weeks ago, I was pulled into a job competition and was basically told I got the job when they called me in for an interview (long story). Great news, right? Aaaall our hard work finally paying off. Not only was this job a GREAT career opportunity, but financially, it was ideal. We would be more than doubling our income. We were thinking more house renovations, (much needed) new car, perhaps a family vacation for next year, just to name a few of the things from our "wants" list.

Seeing that a full-time job was in my close future, I started weaning off my baby from breastfeeding. My husband, who is on paid parental leave from his job (yes, we're very lucky and so grateful for this!), also started getting ready mentally for the transition. He would be becoming a full-time stay-at-home-Dad until his parental leave is done at the end of January.  This was all part of our plan.

The night before my interview, I was nursing my 4-month old son and he looked up at me with the sweetest most loving smile. His eyes were full of love. I saw in his eyes that I'm his whole world. And it hit me, a heart-wrenching sadness. I DON'T WANT TO return to full-time work right now. I WANT to stay with my baby. Actually there is nothing I want more than that.

This was not our plan and I fought it in my head and heart for so long telling myself "I can do this. This is so easy, I will go back to work full-time and move on with my career, and baby can stay home with Dad for the first nice months, and then we can get a nanny, and we'll have lots of money to do lots of fun stuff."

Yea right.

That night after I put Kaid to sleep, hubby walks into the nursery to check up on us. I was so scared to tell him how I felt. I didn't want to disappoint him when he was counting on me. He spent the last two years supporting us financially. We all have worked SO HARD and made ginourmous sacrifices as a family for me to pursue this dream of working as a translator.

But once I said the words out loud, "I don't want to stop breastfeeding and leave my baby", I knew my husband "got it". I didn't need to say more. He looked at me approvingly and said "ok". Can we say "big weight off my shoulders!?"

I cannot tell you the amount of stress that left my body once I verbalized what had just come to my consciousness.

Hubby even shared with me the next day that he felt relieved I was going to be home with baby. (We did agree that I would take on some local part-time hours though. Something not too far from home that would allow me to keep breastfeeding. Stay tuned for a future post about the perfect part-time job I found!  Yes, I am blessed.)

Life has a way of humbling us. It is filled with change and growth. And "A person who views the world the same as she did many years ago has wasted many years of life.”  One thing is for sure is that I didn't waste the past two years; I feel so different.  Having my baby boy has changed my heart and it reorganized our priorities.  And that's ok.

Now I just have to let go and let Life guide me into the "unplanned".

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Kaid - 3 months

(Hi friends and readers!  Sorry I haven't been around the past couple of weeks.  I was on vacation and just came back a few days ago.  I have been reading your blogs though, just not posting from mine!  I'm looking forward to sharing with you a bunch of different posts that I have in the works.)

My baby is not a newborn anymore.  He turned 3 months on August 4.

His little personality is really shining through and it's so much fun to see.  We're getting to know him better too, so we're not freaking out as much when he has one of his crying fits. When we first witnessed this, we thought something was seriously wrong because he would SCREAM so loud out of the blue...but learned with time that he does this when he's very tired. It makes sense. Little humans are only starting to experience the discomforts of life (such as being over sleepy) and that's how Kaid expresses it. It never lasts long anyway. Now that we know what it is, we usually try to help him fall asleep.

This past month we also tried formula.  We chose an organic brand and at this point, we give him about 4 ounces a day on average.  I'm still breastfeeding full-time though (and pumping/freezing some of my milk for when I go back to work).  I haven't decided if/when I'll be stopping for good or if I'll be doing part-time breastfeeding (like morning and before bed type thing).

Here are some of the photos from this past month.




Monday, August 4, 2014

Our 2nd anniversary with wedding movie

Today is our 2nd wedding anniversary.  Time flies. Really.  I almost feel a bit melancholic about it!  But I'm not; I'm just tired from the sleep-deprivation of the past 3 months.  Nonetheless, it was a happy day!

My oldest son was at a cottage with friends, so Sean, Kaid (baby) and I spent the day downtown.  We had lunch, then walked around taking photos and laughing.  Ottawa is such a beautiful city!  We almost got caught in a big rain storm, but got to the car in time.  Kaid seemed amused by us having so much fun.  It was his first outing to the city walking around the Byward Market. (I've been living in this area for 19 years now and still LOVE going downtown to the market.  It's just beautiful.)

Anyhow, to me it just feels like the past couple of years since our wedding have just gone by so fast.  I remember always hearing older people say this "time flies!"  I guess I'm getting old too.  But I'm grateful.   I'm grateful for the time we have together.  Mostly, I'm grateful to have such a loving man as my husband.

So what have we done in the past two years of marriage?  We made it work on one salary after I left my job to go back to uni; we managed to travel to Cuba with family for one awesome vacation; we celebrated our first anniversary in Lake Placid NY; we got pregnant unexpectedly; we sold our house; we moved to another town (still close to Ottawa though); we had a baby; I graduated; we lost our cat Flynn (rest in peace big boy) :( and we are now spending the summer at home, together, as a family (I being jobless and hubby being on parental leave for 9 months).

Since we don't have extra money this summer to do something big for our anniversary, I surprised Sean with a wedding movie that I made.  I think it might've *almost* made him cry.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow