January 25, 2011

who should name the baby?

Is it a good idea to let a two year old name a baby? Well, that's debatable. If you ask my parents, its a terrific idea. In fact, my brother (2 years and 10 months my senior) chose my name. My parents were smart though, because they gave him three options from which he could select: Kristin, Lauren & Julia. His decisive two-year-old self determined that his new little sister would be Kristin, and I must say I have always liked my name and have given my big brother credit for his excellent choice! (Way to go G-Brother!)

Truth be told, I know my name came from my Mum's favourite evening soap - Dallas. For those of you who can remember the famous "Who Shot J.R.?" episode of the series, the answer is Kristin. Kristin shot J.R. And yes, I know the series well - I watched it in reruns with my mum when I was old enough to!

So now, almost 30 years later, I find myself at the same stage - with a two year old, who has come up with a brilliant name for her sibling-to-be. The only difference is, I haven't given her three choices. She has simply made the decision for us. Whenever you ask her what the baby is going to be (as in boy or girl), although she originally chose a gender each time, she now goes straight to the name: Ella.

She has decided that when the baby arrives in April, it will be named Ella...Cinderella.

Although giving naming power to a toddler worked for my parents, I'm not sure we can - in good conscience - name our child Cinderella. But, there are still a couple months to go, and Lady M is a persuasive little girl, so who knows what will happen!

January 22, 2011

alphabet lessons

I like that learning can happen in all sorts of places.  When out and about with Lady M, we turn most adventures into fun lessons; of course this is especially easy when there is so much for her to soak up at every turn, and her curiousity is piqued by the simplest things. In fact, its so much fun to re-explore the world from her sight line and vantage point. Sometimes she draws my attention to things I haven't looked at in years; case in point, I had to re-learn all of my work trucks - from a digger to a cement mixer - last year when she became fascinated with each vehicle we passed while on the road. Considering we drive right past a construction site every morning, I had to learn them all (again), and fast! I think she still knows them better than me!

But sometimes I love how the simplest things at home can turn into lessons as well. Take the other night for instance: Lady M was eating alphabet vegetable soup for the umpteenth time; she loves it. However, this was the first time that it turned into a lesson in the alphabet. She started by pulling out the letter 'o' and identifying it to me, and then did the same with the next soupy letter out of the bowl, 'y'. The next one she couldn't identify, so I flipped it around so she was looking at it properly and our letter lesson was on! We identified every letter that came out of the bowl and matched a word to it. It was so simple, and easy. Of course, she identified each of the vegetables too, and although most were pulled out by hand by the end, and the perimeter of her mouth was turning a lovely shade of orange, we had turned a simple part of supper into an important lesson. 

Later that night we were watching one of my favourite shows, Wheel of Fortune. Wheel has been family viewing in my house for as long as I can remember; my Mum, Dad, brother and I always watched it as a family when I was growing up, and I'm thankful that my hubby and daughter like to watch it with me now. Of course I've watched it for years, but until my little lady got a bit older, didn't see some of the lessons that could be found in it. Once again, the alphabet! Its simple, a contestant calls a letter, identifying its sound; and good ol' Vanna faithfully walks across the stage revealing that letter sometimes in multiple places. Perfect! Lady M hears the letter sound, and then sees several appear right before her eyes. Seems simple, since we like to watch it as a family anyway, but I like to know she's getting something out of it as well.

I find little lessons like this everywhere with Lady M, and love turning life into a great educational tool for her. But, if she starts answering all the Jeopardy questions, I'll know she's really made it.

January 8, 2011

i should mention...

I should mention that I have once again shared some of my so-called 'wisdom' over at Be Positive Mom. I have written my A-Z list of tips for working moms as part of Steph's Working Mom Interview series. You can see it here!

And if you're interested, you should just check out Steph's blog, because its great!!


January 6, 2011

where have the months gone?

Its been a while since my creative juices have been flowing. Its been so long since I've written, I suppose, that somehow I'm now six months pregnant with my 2nd munchkin, and sporting a lovely pregnant belly! I seem to have lost a great deal of time in there having suffered from morning sickness for about four months, and by the time I made it through my work day, came home and played with Lady M and got her to bed, writing with a little bit of creative flair was the furthest thing from my mind!

Thankfully, in the midst of all of this, while I could barely stand walking into my kitchen, let alone think of making dinner, my darling hubby kept the house in check. Not that he doesn't help with the cooking in a regular week, but he really had to step up his game for a bit there!

By the beginning of December the sickness had subsided (phewf!) so my mum, Lady M and I took a little jaunt to Florida to visit our family and do some pre-Christmas shopping. (For the record, I have never shopped so early for Christmas in my life! I'm totally a Christmas Eve kind of girl, and I like it that way.) So, between our trip, and then the insanity that is Christmastime, its suddenly January!

In that time, Lady M seems to have grown several inches (judging from the fact that her pants are all now sitting at her ankles when we put them on in the morning), she has begun to display the classic two-year old tantrum tendencies, and we have officially entered the 'why' stage of life. Ahh, yes. Its been a busy couple of months!!

So, now that I feel like myself again (and am in the so-called 'honeymoon trimester'), I'll do my best to share some stories of what is happening in our world again. Certainly my two-year-old monkey provides lots of entertainment these days, and keeps Cal and I laughing all the time. Hopefully some stories will make you laugh too!