March Preschooler Book Club 

   I’m excited to kick off the first Preschooler Book Club with One More Rabbit. This is a great book for our little preschoolers, the writer and illustrater made it easy for kids to follow along. We picked up our copy at Chapters, check your local bookstore for a copy.
  I put Gryphen’s out the night before so it would be the first thing she saw when she came downstairs. We have a home school section set up where we can go over words, draw and store toys!  

Well I was right! Gryphen spotted the book the moment she came downstairs and opened it right up! After her initial flip through she asked if we could read it (a few times).   

Let us know what you think of this fun book! Meet us over on Instagram March 15th for an interactive chat about our thoughts. I’ll be doing a full review at the end of the month with our families thoughts. 

The Yummiest Lactation Cookies

Today’s experiment… Oatmeal Chocolate Chips Lactation Cookies. As you might already know I will try anything to increase my milk supply and while I was shopping through well.ca I noticed that had Boons lactation cookies for a nice $9 on sale; I had to order some! Well they were delicious! I ordered a bag of the Cocoa Quinoa & Oatmeal Raisin. I must say I really preferred the Cocoa Quinoa, it was the right amount of chocolate to kill a craving while assisting with my milk supply 🙂 Win win in my books!

img_7348

I wasn’t about to pay for another bag of those bad boys so I turned to Pinterest to seek out the most pinned lactation cookie recipes and wow there were A LOT! I settled  on 4 different ones and played with ingredients from all making the yummiest cookies! I personally used all organic ingredients but if you don’t have them don’t get hung up, just use what you have.

Ingredients

3 cups oatmeal
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
5 tablespoons brewers yeast
3 tablespoons ground flaxseed
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter
4 tablespoons unrefined organic virgin coconut oil
1 1/2 cups organic cane sugar (I buy mine at Costco)
2 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups milk chocolate chips/chunks

Directions

  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees F
  2. Whisk in a large bowl oatmeal, flour, yeast, flaxseed, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon & salt.
  3. In your mixer bowl beat butter with coconut oil until creamy.
  4. Add sugar and beat until “fluffy”.
  5. Add eggs!
  6. Add vanilla extract.
  7. Gradually add dry ingredients.
  8. Hand mix in chocolate chips so they’re evenly dispensed
  9. Place desired amount on to lined cookie sheet and bake! Mine took 12 minutes but each oven is different I suggest setting your timer for 10 minutes and checking them.

img_7347

These cookies have been a family favourite in our house and we hope you and yours love them as much as we do! Hashtag #HappyLifePilotWife with your cookies! Can’t wait to see how they turn out 🙂

Preschooler Book Club

School is fast approaching for my soon to be four-year old and it has me thinking… What books does Gryphen love. Every month I’m going to pick a new book to read and review with Gryphen and we’d love for you to join in and let us know what your preschooler thought about the book as well.
0099 Preschooler Book Club
A new book will be announced on the first of every month, followed by an interactive discussion on Instagram on the 15th. Don’t forget to tag us while you’re reading with your little ones 🙂 #HLPWBookClub
0100 Preschooler Book Club

At the end of every month Gryphen & I will give a you full review of the book and let you know how many planes we rank it! 
Favicon

Bye Bye Daddy

Well today was incredibly heartbreaking in our house. Gryphen had to say goodbye to Devon after only spending 3 days with him. I’m not sure how other parents handle their pilot leaving but we try to let Gryphen know that Daddy will be leaving on a specific day so there’s no surprises but when that day comes it’s the end of the world in our house. Until he gets in the car and drives down the road she’s very moody having highs and lows then a full “breakdown” when he’s gone. These breakdowns can last anywhere from 3 minutes to an hour but sometimes continue all day with small blowouts.

Well today is one of those days with small outbursts once she remembers Daddy is gone. She’ll be playing perfectly with her toys, looks at me and questions “Where’s Daddy?” “he’s gone to fly his plane” “WHAT HE LEFT ME!!” and that’s a cue for a screaming fit and questioning if he actually brought his special item and I have to break out the photos Devon sends non-stop to reassure her that he really is at work and that he didn’t forget that special item.

img_7184

I have to say this is more of a recent event and it was never “this tough” but as she’s been getting older and noticing that he’s gone flying it triggers something with her and I’m left trying to put her pieces back together. Did your little one have a tough time adjusting to you or your partner’s flying schedule? How did you handle it? We’re really hoping that we can find a method to help Gryphen cope with Devon’s departures as they won’t be stopping until she’s an adult.

Valentine’s Day Fun

We had such a fun Valentine’s Day this weekend! Gryphen has been asking if she could have a party so I invited a couple of her friends over so they could decorate some crowns and do other kids activities! The night before Gryphen & I baked the cutest red velvet cupcakes. Yum!
Even though weren’t using these she was very obsessed with holding them for photos! Haha oh

Kids ?After Captain Gryphen was done working hard on her crown she decided that the kids should take to drawing our dry erase board we use for learning. I really love how her crown turned out!  On Sunday I decided it would be a great idea to take some family photos; I called in my good friend which turned into a very funny 15 minutes and some tears. I was very happy with the results and glad that we got a couple good shots of the four of us! Still hard to believe there’s 4 of us now. Yikes! 0096 Family Photo 0097 Family Photo 0098 Family PhotoI hope everyone enjoyed their Valentine’s Day & Family Day long weekend xo

My Breastfeeding Experience

Every where I look these days I see an ad or photo promoting breastfeeding so when it came to feeding Hunter I knew I wanted to breastfeed him. Sadly it wouldn’t be “that” easy for me. Six years ago I decided to have a breast reduction. Because of that, breastfeeding Gryphen just didn’t happen for us. I was beyond devastated and suffering from postpartum depression at that time so I pushed myself to move on. Fast forward to getting pregnant with Hunter and I knew that no matter what I’d do anything to breastfeed him.

It’s been a long LONG couple of weeks with Hunter. Everything started so perfect. Hunter had a perfect latch and we were pushing through the soreness with some Dr. Newman cream. Then his weight didn’t change. He just stayed at the same place for a few days. Bad news for me. I was back to being devastated. I just felt so successful and then the midwife told me I needed to start supplementing. I couldn’t stop crying. Here I am sitting on the sofa with my mother-in-law, sister-in-law, my husband and the midwife and my world felt like it was just falling down. HELLO EMOTIONS.

It was time for me to go back to the drawing board and start more research on breastfeeding. Once the midwife left, I grabbed my phone. Time to email. I sent so many emails and read way too many forums. It was time for us to drive over to babies’r’us to get some bottles and formula. I must have looked like shit and that’s all I could think about because I did not want to think about how I was “selling out” and buying formula. I actually couldn’t bring myself to feed Hunter formula so Devon did it. Then Joanne fed him for me. Finally I had another midwife appointment and low and behold Hunter was up to 8 lbs! I was reassured what I was doing was working and I needed more direction.

I met with the local breastfeeding clinic. Turns out my one breast wasn’t producing much milk BUT the other one was! Finally I was able to logically process everything. My next step was to rent a hospital grade breast pump & start taking domperidone (on top of the herbal supplement I was already taking). Start calling around. Found one. Rented! Now to start pumping as much as possible. HUGE FAIL. Who knew pumping actually took so much time! This is how a feed for Hunter went. Breastfeed, bottle feed, change diaper, get Hunter to sleep or relaxed THEN pump! It would take 2 hours every time I fed him. But for me it was worth it. He was getting the breast milk I really wanted him to get.

Fast forward to Hunter being 6.5 weeks old and guess who has a tongue tie! Yup that’s right some how it went undetected for so long blows my mind BUT it did. We celebrated Hunter being two months by bring him to Sherry Hill in Brampton to have his tongue tie “released” it’s a fancy word for cutting the skin under his tongue and the poor little guy screamed so much. Completely heart breaking. But it wouldn’t end there, 6 times everyday we had to do a range of exercises with him opening the cut and stretching the skin under his tongue.

Our journey is far from being over but it seems to be on the right track! I’ve included a list below of herbal supplements we’ve tried. 0089 Duty DiaperFenugreek & Blessed Thistle – was okay but gave Hunter HORRIBLE gas.
Euphoric Herbals Lush Leche – AMAZING! Sucks it’s an American brand with our dollar so low but well  worth the money.
Domperidone – it’s a prescription but well worth the money.
MumMa MilkStream – LOVE this tincture. I was hesitant to try it but so happy I did.

The New Do!

For the past while I’ve want to cut my hair but was very unsure. I decided to tell Devon what I wanted and surprisingly he was incredibly supportive. A few years ago I remember a friends husband being “upset” when she shaved a portion of her hair! haha After a few days of discussing and researching what I fully wanted, today was the day to do it! I sectioned off my hair, watched Devon prepare the clippers and I turned away! There was no way in hell I was watching him cut my hair that I’ve worked so hard growing and not colouring. Snip snip it was gone!
0094 Hair After spending the day with my new hair style I have to say I really love it, I’m very happy that I’m still able to wear my hair normally and you’d barely be able to notice that I’ve had one side shaved. But if I do more of a dramatic part you can fully see it. I think I’m going to have to shave a bit more just so the part is a bit more natural but still keeping my original part covering the shaved (if that makes sense 😉 ).0095 Hair Let me know what you think in the comments below 🙂

 

Don’t mind me as I scream!

I love my son I really do! He’s beyond amazing but something has changed. This darling little gem has taking to being “colic” and now screams all day and night.

I would actually be going crazy if it wasn’t for my ring sling. The only way to stop Hunter from crying is by holding him upright and moving around! If I sit he screams, if I lay him down he screams, if I put him in the ring sling and clean and do housework he’s happy and sleeps!

What did you do to settle your LO when they hit that “colic” stage? We’d love to hear what worked for you.

 

Duty Diaper Review

I received the most amazing diaper cover “US Special Forces – Multicam” in the mail while I was pregnant with Hunter from Duty Diaper. I’m so in love with this little cover & the incredibly story behind this company. Like many diaper companies Duty Diaper started on the kitchen table with many late nights and now all of their covers are assembled by a Disabled Veteran Company in Florida. They have a variety of covers made with very high quality materials.

0089 Duty Diaper

At first glance we just loved these covers. Jennifer has done a wonderful job with the unique packaging which has come in handy when we’re out & about and need a small bag for a dirty pre-fold. Instead of having the fasteners attached you can un-velcro move and adjust them to fit your infant’s body. The velcro on these Duty Diaper covers is so tough! When we were removing the nametape we really had to pull that baby off! haha Oh and how much do you love the custom nametape. Gryphen has taken to clipping things to Hunter’s diaper whenever he has this one on! It’ll come in hand once he gets moving.
0093 Duty Diaper The fabric is incredibly soft to touch, slim fitting and holds up very well to our heavy wetter. In the four weeks of having this cover in our circulation we’ve had 1 leak. One leak which was because someone (Devon) didn’t make sure the pre-fold was on correctly so I nicely got covered in pee! Thanks Devon 😉 The only con I have with this cover is that it doesn’t have a double wall on the legs. 0090 Duty Diaper This is a perfect diaper cover for babes but another thing I love is it makes a wonderful photo prop! Being active in photography we’re always looking for new items to add to our collection and this diaper cover was spot on for our new addition. If you’re a newborn photographer and shoot for service members, or anyone in the emergency services the Duty Diaper covers are perfect for your clients and a steal at $39.95.
0091 Duty Diaper

Hunter just loved having tummy time in front of the warm fire-place on his bear rug from From Way Up North while we snapped photos of him. This rug is perfect for all ages (Gryphen just loved it).

0092 Duty DiaperI was really looking forward to shooting Hunter in this cover and can’t wait to shoot again with it! If you’d like to purchase one for yourself please follow the links below. And for all you crochet lovers out there don’t forget to pick up the Bear rug pattern & the felted infant bootie pattern from From Way Up North on Etsy!

Duty DiaperUS Special Forces Multicam (don’t forget to take a look at their other amazing covers).

The Details of Hunter’s Birth

If you aren’t interested in hearing the details of my labour I highly suggest you just stop reading now to save you the mental images! But if you came to this post to find out what went down.. well you’re in the right place!

Anyone who knows me knows that I need things to work out perfectly how I planned them out or it’s all hell for me (and all the other people around me). Since I gave birth to Gryphen back in 2012 Devon and I discussed what I’d like for our next child and I was very firm on a few things and I knew that I’d do anything to make sure those were achieved.

  1. A water birth – I spent most of my labour in the tub at the IWK and knew I wanted a birthing tub for round two.
  2. Midwife – I remember my SIL Samantha had a midwife and she had all these amazing things to say and after the birth the midwife comes to your house for the first couple visits.
  3. Paternity Leave – The day we arrived home from the hospital with Gryphen, Devon went to work and I was an emotional wreck with a newborn! This time I wanted him to take a month off to help me around the house and with Gryphen. But as our lives alway change so did Devon’s job! He took a job with Air Transat which meant he’d be doing training during my last month of pregnancy until the baby would be around 2 months old. This was great news to me! I knew he’d most likely be there for the birth as well for the first little while to help and make sure everything was going great.

So now you know some of the major details of what I wanted let me tell you about the actual birth and the events leading up to it. Well the last couple weeks of my pregnancy were pretty emotional for me, I was super worried that I was going to have postpartum depression again. Thursday night (41 weeks pregnant) Devon and I were laying in bed talking about how I was concerned that my depression was coming back and I was terrified how I’d handle it with him being gone so much when I started to get some contractions! Thinking I was probably just hungry I went downstairs to make something to eat (time check: midnight). I ate some food, went upstairs and decided to take a bath! Sent my bestie in Dubai a text saying I felt like my labour was starting! Who responded incredibly fast and thought perhaps I should wake up Devon and let him know what was going on.

Devon suggested I should call the midwife (time check 1:30am), after a fun convo during a fairly intense contraction she let me know they’d be here around 2am. At this point I was either on the exercise ball or lounging in my bathtub. Gryphen was fast asleep (or so I left her) and everything was going smoothly. Soon the midwives arrived and we did a check to see how far I was dilated (4cm) and they suggested to Devon that if I planned on using the birthing tub then he’d better fill it up; Devon went to work with a little help from Gryphen! Gryphen was woken up when Devon closed her bedroom door so she wouldn’t get woken up. Ops.

For the next hour or so Devon & Gryphen were downstairs watching tv and eating some cereal, while I breathed through my contractions. (time check: 3:30am) Devon added some warm water to the birthing tub so I could actually get in. During this time I was resting next to the bed and the student midwife decided to check my dilation (8cm). After she check I had a pretty intense contraction and I could feel my cervix dilate the remainder 2 cm’s. Devon helped me into the tub while Gryphen and the main midwife Anne sat on the exercise ball assisting with my breathing. The first contraction in the tub I felt my water break, such an odd sensation. The only way to describe it, its like a balloon popping. The next two contractions I pushed his very hair filled head out. All I remember from this moment was the student midwife telling Devon the baby would be here soon and my response was “yes because his head is in my hand”. The next contraction he was fully out (time check: 4:03am) and Gryphen was right beside me on the outside of the tub checking out her baby brother! The student midwife scooped him out of the water and handed him to me but told Gryphen her sister was here, and Devon’s reaction was priceless! For some reason the student midwife kept referring to the baby as a girl, I didn’t notice it much but I think at that moment for Devon it was pretty shocking. But he was definitely a boy!

The next couple hours were pretty routine and went by fairly quickly, Gryphen wouldn’t leave her brother’s side until I took her into her room and laid with her until she fell asleep. Friday was a complete blur and lacking in sleep. The next few days after the delivery I more or less spent it in bed while Devon took care of Gryphen and prepared all our meals. I was avoiding going to the main floor as I knew it would be a complete mess (which it was). I had my first contraction just after 11:30pm on Thursday and 4.5 hours later at 4:03am on Friday November 27th we welcomed our second child! I asked Devon later how he felt the labour went “It was really fast, I was expecting to be running and getting you things all night and most of the day but it was over so quickly I didn’t even have time to let it sink in”.

We had such an amazing experience and we’re very happy we decided to use a midwife instead of a general doctor or OBGYN again. I was lucky to have easy labours with both of our children and I’m happy to report that this time around I haven’t struggled with any depression! If you’re expecting or are a new mum I’d love to hear about your birth experience.

Subscribe to my blog so you don’t miss my post about my struggles with breastfeeding after a breast reduction.