Monday, 20 March 2017

International Day of Happiness

March 20, 2017

It feels strange to be on here again because I just posted yesterday. It used to be normal to post daily, but now my goal is to blog once a week.

However, apparently it is the International Day of Happiness (and the first day of Spring) so I feel like writing.

Because happiness is pretty damn important.

Before I go further though, and before I forget again like I did in the last post, I wrote another guest blog post for my local Mommy Connections page. Check it out. It's all about my experience with breastfeeding. It's obviously not a topic everybody is interested in, but if you are, check it out. Here it is: Breastfeeding







It used to be a goal of mine to be happy. Even in the midst of unhappiness, all I wanted was some laughter. A lightness of the heart. 

Then one day, I figured it out. I just had to be happy. Easy as that. Just be happy. I had to look at things differently. Gratitude was huge in changing my way of looking at my life. In my case, there was always something to be grateful about, I just had to pay attention, and appreciate it.

I am by no means happy all the time. I try to be, but I'm also good at being grumpy. That won't change.


Today is International Day of Happiness, and I wish with all my heart that EVERY day could be International Day of Happiness, and that people could see the the great things in life.

I know that not everybody is in the place or the situation to even experience the good, but the optimistic in me has hope.

I can't make everybody happy. I can try though! 

Anthony makes my heart happy every day. I hope that I will be able to do the same for him. I never expected that having him would make me as happy as I am. I still get tired and impatient, but mostly, I'm just grateful to have him and happy to see him laugh and smile.

So here's to happiness. Here's to the good things, big or small. Here are some photos of my happy things:

I found a cookie

Anthony enjoyed his supper.

A fabulous new project!

First day of Spring means a beer outside. Even if it's cold.

This teething necklace is the BEST.

These boys.

Lunch out. Food. Good!

These boys.

Teaching my kid to brush his teeth.

Overalls

The SK sky.

Bacon Caramels. 
 Hope you all had a happy day.


"Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year."
Ralph Waldo Emerson


©ErinLeahMcCrea All photos I share on my blogs are my own, please Ask Me For Permission Before Using Them.


Also, check out my ongoing book blog:  Proud Bookworm at: http://bookserinread.blogspot.ca/ 

Blogs I used to write on but not being updated:
and

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Face-book-a-versary? Oh no...

March 19, 2017

About a week ago, Facebook made a video for me to celebrate my 10 years on Facebook. Instead of being excited about their video of photos and words I've posted, all I could think was what a waste-book-a-versary. (haha, I've been waiting to use that joke.) 

Seriously though, it immediately made me realise I had wasted A LOT of time in the past ten years. Somedays more than others.

I have a love/hate relationship with FB, and I'm pretty sure I'll never quit (unless, of course, all this time those silly posts saying FB is going to charge if I don't copy and paste are true... I didn't copy and paste.)

The things I like about FB aren't really what I see anymore. I like seeing photo of my friend's kids, or a vacation. I even kind of enjoy seeing the delicious food somebody is about to eat. I like the happy posts, and the posts that make me happy for the person posting. I like the real posts about things that are hard in life.

I share too many photos of my life. Of my baby, of my dog, of my partner and I. I have friends and family from a far, and this is my way of sharing my life with them. I used to share a lot more details. Happy or sad.

I've slowly tried to share more of my photos on Instagram instead, but not everybody (my Mom) is on the photo sharing media. I find it a bit happier over in Instagram land. 

Either way, I'm getting a bit off topic. My point is, I saw that I had been on it ten years, and it didn't make me want to celebrate. 

I like to think it's there for good reasons. I would have lost touch with quite a few people if not for the social media time taker. Or... I just would have made more phone calls. Who knows. My Katimavik friends, my Korea friends, my university friends, people I've met (and want to keep touch with) from many jobs of my past... most of them hang out on FB. We don't talk every day, but I know they are there.

Unrelated to the ten years on FB, but kind of related last night at around 10, I decided I would try to shut down for 24 hours. I wanted to spend the day with my family, and to catch up on reading and writing.



I had already deleted FB off my phone, but I wanted to actually have a technology free day. I put my phone on airplane mode (instagram, games, texting, calls), I didn't open my computer, and I didn't turn on Netflix. Netflix is on A LOT these days. 

(Side note, I got rid of FB months ago because it wasn't working correctly on my phone, but it's been wonderful not logging in all the time from my phone. I'll never get it back on.) I do use it on my computer.

I did turn my phone on once at 2 to check texts, and again at 5 for no good reason at all. 

I turned my phone back on for good after Anthony was down for the night.

What did I learn from this? A few things.

First of all, I can read while holding a sleeping baby:

Actually, I can read while holding two sleeping babies:

Second, my phone is in use A LOT. For no real reason. I pick it up and use it whether I need to or not. I'd like to continue using airplane mode for an hour or two every day. I really don't need to have it in my hand all day. (I do have to have it nearby because it's my camera, and I'm more addicted to taking photos than I am of anything else.)

Third, although I spend most of my day paying attention to and talking to Anthony (or Clint and Drogo), today I they got all my focus. I laughed a lot. (And sometimes yelped when Anthony bit me, or Drogo tried to trip me.) My family makes me happy. The break from Netflix and wasting time on my phone was lovely. The time with my family (all spent in my lumberjack onesie -seen above) was priceless. 


And fourth, I finished a book (it took all day - and most of it was after Anthony went down for the night), and found out I hadn't written in my journal for a year. A YEAR. I guess that's what happens when social media gets involved. I spent 10 years telling the world my story, but forgot to save some of the healing writing for my journal. Also, I started the journal in 2012. I'll be writing in it now JUST to finish it. 

My OLD OLD friend
First journal entry in it.
The last time I wrote. Just after I found out I was pregnant.
Today... 

 So to end this post, I have been on FB since I was 26. I'm now 36. I love seeing bits and pieces from my friends and family. But I need to slow down and enjoy my life for real. Not through a computer. I'm not going to quit FB, but I don't need to be on it or my phone as much as I am. (Also, I LOVE the On This Day, and will love it even more when photos of baby Anthony start popping up. That alone will keep me from quitting.)

Some quick other news, my baby boy was ten months old yesterday. Time flies. He makes me happy every day, and I only hope I can do the same for him.
He met Batman on his 10 month birthday.
And last bit of other news, I'm about to take writing a lot more seriously. It's time. That novel is getting back on my screen pronto. I probably should have done that today, but reading felt right.

Happy Sunday, all.






"Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year."




Ralph Waldo Emerson

©ErinLeahMcCrea All photos I share on my blogs are my own, please Ask Me For Permission Before Using Them.


Also, check out my ongoing book blog:  Proud Bookworm at: http://bookserinread.blogspot.ca/ 

Blogs I used to write on but not being updated:
and

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Loved Ones Lost

March 2, 2016

There isn't one day that I don't think of somebody I have lost. Usually, a happy thought or memory. 

I have had the privilege to speak at three funerals. I say privilege because that's exactly what it is. To be asked to speak in front of your loved one's loved ones, and get to say one last thing about how much you will miss them is a privilege. 

It's also scary as hell. It's heartbreaking and it's really hard to get through.

The reason I'm talking about this is because a couple of days ago I was looking at my 'On This Day' on Facebook, and saw  my Aunt's obituary. She died four years ago on February 25th. The On This Day has happy memories as well as sad ones for me. I wouldn't have it any other way. It's my life (from 2007 on.)

Her death was heartbreaking. I had lost grandparents, I lost Cameron, and then my aunt died, and it seemed unfair. 

She was a wonderful woman. Strong, loving, kind, opinionated. She saw the best in the people she loved. 

She was one of my favourite people.

Maybe I've already spoken about her before in posts. 

It's different now. When I see memories of people lost, I automatically think about Anthony. I wish they could meet him. I wish he could meet them.

My aunt would have loved my baby. He would have given her his best smiles.

There are so many people I would have loved to have met Anthony. My grandparents. My aunt. Cameron. My great uncle Bud. 

Losing people is a reality that I was lucky enough not to face most of my life. Now that I have had to deal with it, I wouldn't wish it on my baby. I hope he doesn't have to deal with it, but I know he will. 

He doesn't get to meet the people I've lost. He will get to hear about them though. 

He will hear how my Aunt Marilyn stood up for what she believed in, and how she would have thought he was the greatest little guy ever.


He'll hear how Grandma McCrea was everybody's favourite Grandma - even the ones who weren't related to her. 

I haven't mentioned my Grandfather McCrea because he died before me. I've only hear stories and memories.


He'll hear how my Grandpa Burton used to make the kids jump with his loud singing voice, and how he made me laugh. He'll hear how my Grandma Burton loved her family first. She was ridiculously proud of every single accomplishment, and would have been so proud of him.




He'll hear about Cameron. He'd know that Cam was a great friend, and that if you could learn anything from him, it would be to laugh with all your might.



And of course, my Great Uncle Bud. He'll grow up hearing a lot of stories about that man. A man who was like a third grandfather.



I've lost people. Anthony won't meet them, but I'll make sure to tell him all about my loved ones lost. 

I often look at him, and even though I don't believe in it, I hope one of them is looking down on him and smiling. It makes me want to believe.   

I'm going to lose more people in my life. I don't want to, but I will. I can't stop it, and I can't be sad about it (but I will). I can talk about them. I can share memories. I can write about them. I can remind my little A how much they would have loved him, or do love him. 

This is kind of a dreary entry, but it is what was on my mind. I'm happy. I've lost people, but I'm happy. I can spend my whole life wishing Anthony could have met them, but it won't happen. 

I was lucky to have had them in MY life, and I am who I am, I am the mother I am, because they were in my life.

I'll let my little one know.



"Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year."




Ralph Waldo Emerson

©ErinLeahMcCrea All photos I share on my blogs are my own, please Ask Me For Permission Before Using Them.


Also, check out my ongoing book blog:  Proud Bookworm at: http://bookserinread.blogspot.ca/ 

Blogs I used to write on but not being updated:
and

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Nine Months

Feb 17, 2017

I think I already mentioned that I'm going to be doing guest posts on a Mommy Connections website. I just did my first one! Feel free to check it out: Mommy Connections Blog Post. It's about the choice to have only one baby.

Now for this post.

Today is Anthony's nine month birthday (anniversary?) My plan wasn't for my blog to be all about my kid or a 'Mom' blog. However, it's basically my life now. I'm just getting back into writing, and I'll be able to blog about that soon, but for now, it's just as easy to post about my life, and that includes my sweet nine month old.

Nine months is kind of a big one. It means he's been outside for as long as he was growing inside me. 


Around a year ago today, Anthony was still growing inside me. I was about six months pregnant.
Today, he is a wonderful, healthy baby growing on the outside.
The nine months of pregnancy were scary and crazy. The last trimester was tough. Growing a baby on the inside is nothing compared to nine months of my wonderful Anthony.

During pregnancy, Anthony was growing and becoming a human. Other than the tummy growth, I didn't see it. 

Now, I've been so lucky to be able to watch him grow and change in front of my eyes. 

I think it was a lot easier to keep him safe while he was growing inside me. My little nine month old is full of adventure, and ready to take leaps any chance he gets. Even if the leaps include bumping his head.He's brave, and he's stubborn, and he NEVER gives up.  As far as I know, he didn't bump his head a lot while he was in the womb. (That being said, his head was stuck for a a little too long.)

The thing with this nine month milestone of Anthony's is that it's also my milestone. It's Clint's as well.


We've been parents for nine months. I've been a momma for nine months. (I know, I was a mom while he was growing inside of me, but it wasn't exactly the same.)

Life has changed a ridiculous amount. For instance, I'm home blogging on a Saturday night, hoping that Anthony stays asleep long enough for me to finish the post. Last year about this time, we were going to Rush games, and getting to every concert we could. Going out for supper after 5pm, and enjoying life without a mini attachment. 

I still stayed home to blog, write, or read before he came along, it was just completely different. 

Instead of getting out at night, I make sure to get out during the day between naps.

I'm more exhausted than ever, I stress more about making the correct decision, and I worry about what's going to happen. 

I wouldn't have it any other way. Having something as important as Anthony to stress about is a great thing. He has changed my life in so many wonderful ways.

I smile more. I laugh more. I feel lighter. I always feel lighter now (other than the almost 20 pound mini-me I carry around with me). The weight of the world lifted a bit when I got comfortable being a mom. 

I was concerned that depression would be an issue because it's something I've dealt with, but for some reason it hasn't. I'll admit, I've had really rough days. I've cried a lot. Happy tears and sad tears.

It's been hard, but it's been great. I think having a little guy looking up to me makes me fight harder. He keeps me going, and even when all I want to do is sneak under the covers and close my eyes.

I did the gratitude thing pretty well before Anthony, but now I'm throwing in optimist to the mix. It's a bit harder, but I want Anthony to grow up thinking he can do anything, and he can make the world a better place. I want him to trust that things will get better. I want me to trust that as well.

He's also helped me come out of my shell a little. I've met more people because of him. I have friends, but I didn't really expand my network of friends since moving to Saskatoon (other than work friends.) Now I get out and I meet other Moms, and it has been nice to be able to talk or vent about things that are going on in my life, knowing they won't judge me because they're in the same place.

Just quickly, anybody in Saskatoon, here are some awesome things you can do with your baby, and meet awesome people. 

Fitbump
Fitbump (an exercise class for prenatal, mom and baby, and more.) 

Mommy Connections
Mommy Connections


Mommy Connections (classes weekly with other Moms to learn about Mom life. They also have a Mom and Baby active - you get to try out all the active things in Saskatoon for Mom and Baby. Also fun side events for mom and kids, or just moms.) 







Kickboxing (so much fun!)
Kickboxing
okamimartialarts (Mom and Baby Kickboxing.) 

There are many more, but those are a few of my favourites.










We are also doing swimming lessons
with http://kkswimschool.com/. Definitely worth it to get the babes started early.


Bit of a disjointed post today. That's what we've been doing this past winter, but we are slowing things down a little bit in February and March.

My brain is slowly shutting down for the night, so I'm going to wind this down.

Long story short, today, I celebrate being a mom for nine months. Clint celebrates being a dad for nine months, and Anthony celebrates being in our world for nine months. 

Time is moving way too fast.

Here are a couple more photos from our day.




He's helping Momma vacuum.


Wine bottling with Mom and Dad.

One last thing, it's National Wine Drinking Day! So Cheers all!







I'll try to be more on task next post. I feel like this one was a bit all over the place. It's been an eventful nine months.


"Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year."



Ralph Waldo Emerson

©ErinLeahMcCrea All photos I share on my blogs are my own, please Ask Me For Permission Before Using Them.


Also, check out my ongoing book blog:  Proud Bookworm at: http://bookserinread.blogspot.ca/ 

Blogs I used to write on but not being updated:
and

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Strong Like Mommy

February 7, 2017

We were lucky enough to get a lot of boy clothes before and after Anthony was born. We got tons of great used clothes as well as new clothes from friends and family. 

As I was going through them, I found more than one onesie or shirt that said, "Strong Like Daddy" or "Tough Like Daddy".

I thought they were cute. There are others for Mommas (I DIG MOMMY) as well, but this one made me think. Why weren't there any "Tough like Mom" shirts?

To be honest, this was a quick thought that went through my head as I was washing all the clothes, and getting his closet ready, but I didn't spend a lot of time thinking about it.

Lately, my mind has been on it again. I know his daddy is strong. I know a lot of Daddys are strong. 

So are Moms. We don't always seem to get the credit for being strong. It's just understood that we take care of babies. We're the ones who nurture. 

He's got a "Mom is my anchor" onesie. (The photo is below). And it's super adorable. I feel proud when he wears it. Even though I'm the one who chooses his outfit. 

Being an anchor for somebody is strength. 

I googled Strong Like Mommy baby clothes. They do have them, but not in the way I wanted. 

There were a few with the saying and a photo representing muscles or working out. I do exercise, but not enough to make me want my son to wear that. I won't win in a fight.

There were others that had the saying with a breast cancer ribbon. Women who fight any kind of cancer are stronger than I could even imagine, but that's also not me. 

I was looking at boy clothing, but they did have ones for little girls that said, "Strong Like Daddy, Pretty Like Mommy." It's great that the makers of the onesies are promoting a strong little girl, but pretty like mommy? Really?

It really bothered me that I couldn't find what I wanted.

We carry our babies for nine freaking months. We hold it all together, and take care of ourselves and the growing baby inside us. That is strength.

We give birth to the baby. Whether this be a vaginal birth or c-section (planned or emergency), whether you have an epidural or not, it's one of the scariest things somebody can do. That is strength. It was hands down the scariest thing I've done (and nine months in, you can't back out.)

Taking care of your baby is strength. Sleepless nights. Fears that you are doing EVERYTHING wrong, but continuing on anyway. Postpartum Anxiety or Depression. Breastfeeding or not. It all takes strength. 

I am so proud of myself for the role I've taken. Sometimes I'm proud of myself for the simplest things. I changed a diaper without my child jumping off the change table. I got him dressed. I made it through the day even though I have only thought of sleep since waking up. I fed him. I bathed him without him climbing over the sides. (He doesn't stop moving).

Being a mom takes strength. 

I get my strength from different places. I get it from my partner. He's working away from home, but still has all the confidence in the world that I'm doing a great job. I get it from my baby. One smile from him in the morning gives me strength. Family. Friends. You name it. Support is wonderful.

I also get strength from myself. I know I'm strong (unless we're physically fighting, as I said, then I would lose). I know a lot of Moms who are stronger than they know. 

It's a really hard job. A job that is full of laughter, tears, fear, love, and strength. 

To be clear, I am in no way saying men aren't strong. I know they are. I'm happy Anthony can wear his shirt about being strong like Dad. 

Also to be clear, I think woman who aren't Moms are also strong. Life takes strength no matter where you are in it.

I simply think that maybe we should tell each other more often how great we're doing. How strong we are. In my case, I've got my baby to do it for me:




I had this shirt made by Kreations by Sunshine. I told her what I wanted, and she made the shirt for us. I want the world to know that my son is strong just like his mommy. He's going to be brave, strong, and tough like Daddy and Mommy. 

I want him to know how strong he is. I'm sure this will be easier because boys seem to be told that from the start, but I want him to be strong in every possible way because it's not always just about lifting weights. He will be strength.

If any Mommas are reading this, you made a kid. Congratulations, you're strong as hell.

Okay. Rant over. 

And before I go, this is the other onesie I was talking about. Super cute. Not made specifically for us though. And completely unrelated, I remember when I saw this, and didn't think he'd EVER fit into it. Now I'd like to slow it down.






"Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year."



Ralph Waldo Emerson

©ErinLeahMcCrea All photos I share on my blogs are my own, please Ask Me For Permission Before Using Them.


Also, check out my ongoing book blog:  Proud Bookworm at: http://bookserinread.blogspot.ca/ 

Blogs I used to write on but not being updated:
and