Times have changed!

When Phoenix and Declan were born we did not venture far. I drove home to my parents and Grandparents and that was about it. I didn’t even take them grocery shopping on my own until they were 5 months old and of course that was a shit show! When the boys were finally able to sit up well in high chairs Nick and I took them to a restaurant. As weird as it may sound, this was kind of an exciting adventure for us…we felt like adults lol Of course people ogled the boys because well….people like babies…and twins! The cuteness wore off quickly when the server brought the food late and it was piping hot. the boys were starving, we ran out of snacks and of course the crayons the darling waitress brought our babies were not going to suffice. We ended up boxing up all our meals and leaving. defeated. I think we may have tried it another time but I can’t imagine it went well as I do not remember!

So I recently took the boys on an all day event, a last hurrah for the summer! We got hair cuts and went to Walmart, then bowling and laser tag! We also went to East Side Mario’s for lunch. part of me had anxiety walking in, flashbacks of years before but I had high hopes!

It went perfectly. Granted they are much older, seven, seven and five, but you just never know right? They were so excited to order whatever they wanted, got some fancy kid drinks and couldn’t believe they got free dessert with their meal! They sat in their seats and we talked about our day and the days to follow, our plans for the rest of summer and school starting in a few weeks. It was like a bunch of old friends hanging out! Phoenix even apologized when he couldn’t eat all his pizza, said he was sorry I wasted my money. she I told him we could box it up and take it home he was shocked!

I am so happy that we have come to this point where we can go to restaurants…or anywhere….and not have to worry about behaviour. I don’t have to pray they will sit still and I don’t have the instant headache and mom sweats from stress of kids in public! lol

They cannot wait to go back, They want to try everything on the kids menu!

A picture is worth a thousand words

When I was younger I hated to have my picture taken. No surprise there. I don’t know too many kids who love it. That was back in the day of posed pictures, matching outfits and heaven for bid take a picture of something without having a person in the pic as well. My most memorable family pic is the four of us in windbreakers. Neon colours, poofy bangs and a perfectly arranged foursome, I believe my parents were wearing Rusty Wallace windbreakers…I remember traipsing out to a bush, in the fall, as soon as the leaves turned colour. I remember mom setting up the tripod and after what seemed like for ever….she was pleased (enough) with the shot.

Looking back, I wish i smiled more for pics, didn’t complain when mom brought out the camera but i didn’t know that I would even care!

There has been a camera (cell phone) in my kids’ faces since they were born. If it wasn’t me it was my mom. I have heard many of people tell me to live through real life, not the lens of a camera but I do both! I literally caught my niece standing by herself in a pic the other day! An amazing moment caught thanks to someone who wants to document her life and the life of her family. I want my kids to be able to look back on these special moments, the days I let them pick out their own clothes and Decky picked underwear and a tie, when my three older boys came to the hospital wearing their ‘big brother’ t-shirts to meet Nixon, even the not so fun times when Phoenix got his first stitches…or when Mason got his first stitches lol I love cathing the moments when my boys are with my Gramma and Grampa. Pure joy on all their faces. I usually take the pictures without them knowing which to me means more because they arent posed or forced.

I always wanted to be the Mom that wrote everything down…but instead I am the mom (like my mom) that documents everything through pictures! We have a million family pics. Every time we get together it seems, I know it used to bug Nick but he’s a pro now and so are the kids! We have a million moments to look back on fondly instead of the mandatory once a year family picture time, perfectly posed and coordinated.

Nothing makes me happier (and sad) to look back on pics of my boys… from 2011 to 2014 seems like a blur with twins then 21 months later, three in diapers…so pictures help!

“A photograph is the pause button of life”

The gap

In case no one noticed…there is quite the age gap between my third and fourth son, almost four and a half years actually. People tend to assume Nixon was an oops but he wasn’t.  (For the record) Nixon was perfectly planned. Literally perfect. I can’t tell you how much easier it is to have a baby when you have older kids. Phoenix, Declan and Mason head off to school every morning and Nixon and I do our thing! It’s almost like having one kid…almost….I still have all the work from a house full of boys to do lol

I cannot get over how amazing the older boys are with Nixon. So helpful and kind and loving towards him. They don’t even like to sleep over at Granny or Gramma’s much anymore because they miss their baby brother! I can have a shower and they watch him, they sooth him when he’s crying, they make him laugh and bring him toys! I am so, for lack of a better word, blessed to have such good boys helping me everyday. I know this may change when Nixon gets into their stuff and wrecks their lego building or rips their art work but right now is just lovely!

To go from three kids under 3 to a 4 year age gap makes you appreciate your kids much more. The little extra mental clarity helps too I suppose. I think the timing was perfect for all my boys. Phoenix, Declan and Mason will always be close because of their ages but they will all be close with Nixon because they will have always looked out for him. I hope anyway, I mother can dream can’t she?!

The last one

There is a feeling you get when you’ve had your last baby… Like when you know there isn’t any more babies being born from your body. It’s like an anxious heaviness when you look at him. You don’t want to sleep because you’re afraid that you’ll miss the baby stage, you’ll miss the cute coos, learning to roll over, the smiles and the giggles. It’s the counting down until you have to go back to work. It’s the long days because you’re exhausted from being up all night and sore from trying to lay in a certain position so that he doesn’t wake up but it’s also the blink of an eye and your days are over and he’s one more day older. It’s so many feelings in one it’s almost hard to comprehend. Complete and utter joy mixed with sadness. We just have to do our best, and try our best and stay focused on what is important in our lives and who is important and tune out all the other noise…

The king

When Nick and I were dating we slept in a double bed. We slept with our arms around each other and our legs intertwined. He snored in my face… And I didn’t mind. His alarm would go off (Alexis on Fire… Loud and obnoxious) and I still didn’t mind. Ahhhh young love!

When we moved in together we had a queen, livin large! But we still slept like honeymooners… But with our new pup Oliver. He was usually on our feet or on my head.

When I was pregnant with the twins, in our new house, we had the queen, Oliver annnnd now Charlie. One big happy family. With dogs all around us we still managed to at least have our legs touching.

And then, one day, we got a king! The biggest bed I had ever seen. We kicked the dogs out and both slept like starfish in the night! When nick was at work the babies would sleep on his side and I would be on mine and there was tons of room and no worry of them rolling off!

With Mason, however, he slept with is for the first 7 months or so and the bed seemed to get smaller. Even with his own room there aways seemed to be a kid, or two, sometimes three in our bed… Much smaller king now. Nick used to complain about the boys coming into our bed at night, but I knew it wouldn’t be for long, sadly.

Enter Nixon. When I was pregnant there was always kids in our bed, one, two or three of them. Me and my belly would teeter on the edge just to have a cuddle with my ever growing boys. They’d fight over who got to sleep beside mommy (awwww) Going on ten months and Nixon is still in our bed (which I’m ok with) the older boys still pop in from time to time but my giant king size bed isn’t as big as it used to be! But if it means boy snuggles… I’m not complaining. My babes are growing up way to fast to worry about a good night’s sleep!

Weaning

Today is May 8th 2018. In 42 days my baby, my last baby turns one…in 58 days I return to work from my very last maternity leave. There are so many emotions that come with all that but right now, tonight, its weaning.

One part of the anxiety is Nixon not taking a bottle or sippy cup or soother or hardly anything except me. But the other thing, the bigger thing, is that I don’t want to stop. I don’t want to wean him and I don’t want him be without me. I know it’s probably the last baby syndrome but I don’t know how. I lay in bed at night thinking i should google it. “how to wean your baby” or maybe if I just tried a little harder he’d take a sippy cup. But I don’t want to.

My stomach turns when I think about how hard it is going to be one him… and me…mostly me. The process of him not having me at night, of me drying up unwillingly, of me having to hand him off to Nick so I don’t give in and nurse him.

I don’t remember this feeling with Mason, he took a sippy cup very young so it wasn’t much of an issue when we weaned at 11 months also I had two toddlers running around, i didn’t have much time to think at all. I do realize its the ‘last baby’ thing…dont think I am blind to that. I don’t want to nurse him till he goes to school or anything I just don’t want to have to stop now! Is that too much to ask? Cant I do it on my own terms, when I’m ready?

The answer is no. The return to work day is set. The 2.5 hour commute is waiting and the ten hour shifts are inevitable. I know my boys will be fine. Nick is the most amazing Dad and a hell of a single father for two weeks of the month that I’m on nights and I know everyone has to do it….But I don’t want to. The ‘good money’ and ‘good benefits’ are not worth being away from my boys that much.

58 days until I drive down that highway, pull into that parking lot and walk in those doors.

Twins (pt 2)

So here we are, May 3rd about 1pm. If you’ll remember I was doped up on Morphine and, truth be told, hadn’t gone to the bathroom in like a week, so all of a sudden i felt something, a whoosh under my blanket. In all honesty and probably TMI, I thought I crapped my pants! I yelled for Nick to leave the room! We were newlyweds after all he couldn’t see this! So I wattled to the bathroom, IV in tow and looked down…nothing….nothing but water? yaaaa water…..my friggen water broke! I clearly panicked and pushed the trusty red button and waited for the nurse. She said “ok! it’s time! Where’s your Husband?” Ummm well I thought i crapped my pants so i sent him away…brilliant.

The hours that followed a whirlwind of waiting and pain and more waiting and pain. Nick and I waited at Vic for hours, we watched A lot like love (great movie, even though i was having contractions) then there was finally a bed available at St. Joe’s so I had to take an ambulance across London on the bumpiest roads ever! I jumped up to 7 cm by the time I got to the other hospital and was in tons of pain. So the epidural was a must! The man that gave me it failed the first time, I believe it was because he was asking Nick where he got his shirt, but who can say for sure. Finally the epidural worked…ish…The catheter didn’t wok the first time either. They swore it was in my head (majorly annoying) But when they checked, it turns out i was right. I was in pain the whole time…they thought I was complaining but the epidural wasn’t holding. Finally at 4am the drs sent my mom and Nick to get some rest, ‘nothing is happening anytime soon’ they said. Them 6am hit and it was show time! Mom and Nick were called back after an hour of sleep (thankfully only 10 minutes away at my sisters) and after my darling hubby stopped for a coffee (yes a friggen coffee) they were there and we were ready!

I remember asking the dr. (Dr. Lopez) a million times if the baby was out yet….like maybe he forgot to tell me and i was pushing for nothing. I remember looking into Nicks eye and he looked scared yet strong. I remember looking over at my mom, who seemed too far away, and feeling stronger because of that moment of eye contact. At 8:10am my first born Phoenix Colin Campbell was born 4lbs 15oz! I remember what he looked like, not cleaned up but then looking at Nick and the pride and love in his eyes! (sigh of relief and on to the next!) Declan…oh my Declan, trouble right from the start. He started coming and decided to raise his hand up. Dr pushed him right back up and emergency c-section it was! Right out of a movie. They pushed me into another room, drugged me up real good and cut me open. I was in and out of it but at 8:56am Declan Lorne Campbell was born weighing 5lbs 5oz! I looked quick and passed out hard! Only to wake up hours later in recovery while my babies went to NICU. I didn’t get to see them until 14 hours later and didn’t get to hold them until the day after that. (I feel bad about that still)

Long story short after 21 days in the NICU/Step down units My boys came home. What a crazy beginning it was for them and me and we are still trying to get the hang of it!

Happy 7th birthday my sweet boys, you’ll always be my first babies, the ones that broke me in and somedays broke me but defiantly made my life so much better!

 

Twins! Pt one

There is not one single word that describes what it is like to find out you are having twins. One of the only times in my life when I was speechless. Let me also say, there are no twins in my family or Nick’s. There was no reason to even think we would have twins…except maybe the 16 pound weight gain in the first 8 weeks…Which my mom joked about after a dr appt….

I was laying on a bed at my very first ultrasound. I was 27 and only a few months into our marriage. I had no idea what to expect but I felt like it was taking a while. I asked the ultrasound technician if everything was ok. (Expecting the worst, because that’s what I do) Without batting an eyelash, or even looking up from the screen, she said “yup! Everything is good, It just takes a little longer when there is two”

Ahhhh when there’s two what?! “Babies!” She said then carried on like I knew.

She then made me sit there and swallow hard and breath and try not to pass out until she was done. When she finally went to get Nick I had no words, I couldn’t talk! I just stared at him smiling a nervous happy scared smile…I finally managed to squeak out “there’s two” Of course he was just as confused as I was and needed it explained to him.

The hours that followed were a series of giggles, swear words, head shaking, smiles and just pure shock. We went straight to Chapters and bought all thier twin books.

For months until they came I was scared and happy on a daily basis. How in the heck was I going to take care of two babies at the. same. time. A constant feeling of anxiety and joy, nausea and glee!

And then one day, after making a freezer full of food with my mom (nesting), I was alone in the house because Mom had left to drive over an hour home….I had a pain…then another…and another…I called my mom to ask what contractions felt like which only made her panic and me too. So I called Nick home from work and he came to get me and off to the hospital! 6 weeks and 5 days before their due date!
The Dr’s told me it wasn’t contractions, but probably kidney stones and they were going to keep me until it passed. I was drugged up on morphine every 4 hours for 5 days until one day…May 3rd….I was lying in bed, dozing in and out of consciousness with nick beside me playing on his phone and it happened…

Minecraft

Can we talk about Minecraft… Or NOT talk about Minecraft for frig sakes! As I have said before I have 4 boys, 3 of Minecraft age. If you don’t know what Minecraft is, first of all be thankful, second of all…its a game where the kids build stuff and defend it and there are potions and animals and…zombies? (head shake/eye roll)

My kids love this game. So at many points in the day one of them is telling me about something pertaining to the game. Here lies the problem. I don’t get it. I don’t understand the game or the lingo or the fascination. I try hard to care for my kids sake and of course to stay in the running for Mom of the year buuuut I just don’t get it.

Part of me thinks it’s a dumb game and it’ll “rott your brain” but after you see their little faces after they’ve built this sweet house that has flower boxes and trap doors and a room for mommy, it’s just so sweet and impressive! They actually google images of their favourite characters (Mario, Spongebob, Sonic) and duplicate them in Minecraft! It’s kind of cool really.

This is a bit of a ranting post, tell me I am not alone on the Minecraft ranting? Please tell me I’m not the only one staring blankly through their children while they explain for the millionth time what this potion does or why they are shearing their sheep….Please?

Worst Mom ever

You know when you have a great idea, like it pops into your head and you just think…”I’m totally going to be the coolest Mom for this!”
My kids asked for lunch, as they do, so I asked what they felt like. Only 2 kids were home and they both wanted peanut butter sandwiches. (Boring but an absolute staple in our house.) I had this awesome idea when I opened up the cupboard! What if…I put peanut butter on a hot dog bun, put a little bit of honey down the centre then topped it off with banana!?! Coolest Mom ever, Right?!

Wrong, dead wrong. The horror in my kids faces was almost as though I had killed their beloved pet then took all their toys to Good Will. One of them started crying so uncontrollably that he was hyperventilating and the other one was so pissed that I had the audacity to not make boring food.

Needless to say I dumped the fun food, made 2 boring peanut butter sandwiches (1 slice, flipped) and I vowed never to make them that again… or anything else for that matter. (joking…I am legally obligated to feed them)

I need fun, non confrontational , food ideas for my kids! HELP!

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