Support Not Judge

I’m sitting here at 9:30am on Friday morning enjoying my second cup of coffee while Dmitri plays with his cars and watches a YouTube video. A lot has changed in the year and a half since I last posted. We’ve had another Christmas and two Dmitri birthdays and lots of changes from Dmitri. He’s only two so still a toddler but his language is exploding and he pretty much runs everywhere he goes. He still loves his cars and seeing how something works before he plays with it. Future engineer anyone?!

I have no problem with letting Dmitri watch shows on YouTube or Netflix or whatever. He has learned way more from the videos than Tyler and I could have taught him. The videos are much more interactive and exciting. Not to mention, they can easily repeat over and over and don’t get tired. If Dmitri sat there only staring at the screen and not talking to it, he would be limited more than he is. But he doesn’t. He sings along to the songs, counts ahead if the video is too slow and shouts out colour and shapes and whatever the video is showing. I love watching him really getting into a show or movie (a lot of “oh nos” come out of watching Car’s 3 and he laughs at Heihei in Moana).

Tyler and I decided together that as long as Dmitri is learning and not just staring blankly, he can have shows. This is a choice we made for our family. Other people make the same or completely different decisions for their family. And guess what? That’s ok! There’s so much judgement and mom-shaming out there that is so unnecessary. Recently we were judged and shamed by someone because Dmitri was watching shows to calm down (his toys kept getting stolen) and he ate some chicken nuggets for lunch (he was refusing to eat any other meat). This same person also tried to shame me for using formula using the whole “I don’t want to put chemicals in my baby’s body” thing. Like, really? Why is this a thing? Shouldn’t we be helping fellow mums instead of trying to tear them down? I’ve had new mum friends ask me for advice or tell me things they were doing that I didn’t do with Dmitri. Like, one’s baby would only sleep on his front. That worked for them so great! I know how terrible the sleeping thing is. Dmitri was a shit sleeper, still is sometimes. So do what works for you. I never thought “oh my god she shouldn’t do that I’m gonna tell her how terrible that is”. Like, no. It’s not terrible. The baby was close to the age of rolling over himself anyway and it got him to sleep so yay!

I have no room in my life for people who want to judge me and try to shame me for the choices I make for my family. Like yah, if I’m harming Dmitri in some way call me out but shit, watching videos and eating chicken nuggets? Sounds like pretty typical 2 year old stuff. He knows his colours, can count in sequence 1-20 (and is working on 20 and beyond), knows his shapes including rhombus and parallelogram and knows way more animals than I could ever have taught him at his age. So I’m pretty sure the chicken nuggets and shows aren’t hurting his development lol.

So let’s try to be kinder to eachother. Let’s not judge and shame someone because you personally wouldn’t do something. We don’t live in small villages anymore where we have tons of help. And some of us are even more isolated and have almost zero help than the rest.

So to all the new mums and about to be mums and the veteran mums, you do you and fuck the jugdey shammers. They aren’t worth your time and energy.

I’m ending this post with a disorganised collection of Dmitri pics because why not. He’s adorable!

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‘Tis the Season

Well our first Christmas as a complete little family has come and gone. We had most of Tyler’s family here, minus his sister and sister-in-law. Unfortunately we didn’t get to see everyone we wanted like my dad and the rest of the family but that’s to be expected living far away. Dmitri loved having his grandparents here and I’m pretty sure they enjoyed his company too. He got passed around to everyone every day and was loving all the attention. Even though our house was full of people it was relatively stress-free. My only anxiety was when the creator of the Fucked-up Family Bullshit got sneaky access to Dmitri (which is something we expressly told them not to do (seriously, how can you think that sneaking behind my back to see Dmitri is going to fix our relationship, like at all. For fucks sake grow up.)) while we were Skyping with family. Fortunately that call couldn’t last very long because I had to go make dinner. I am really not impressed by the stunt they pulled but when you are dealing with someone who feels they are entitled to, well, everything, I’m not surprised they did that. Next time we’ll just ask to be called back when they aren’t there. Because fuck that. Seriously.

After dealing with that, I finished making my turkey (which ended up being a little dry because I was on Skype too long) and the rest and I must say, it was pretty delicious. I enjoy cooking, even giant meals like Christmas dinner, as long as Dmitri is being taken care of. Luckily I had tons of people willing to sacrifice their afternoon to help me out.

After Tyler’s family left, he had a couple days off work still so we got to spend some time together and he got to have lot’s of Dmitri time, which they both loved. Now it’s just Dmitri and I again and he’s been getting pissed that he only has be around but he’ll get over it. He got quite a few new toys for Christmas so we’ve been cycling through them each day and he’s forgetting about changing hands so often. Soon we’ll be back to normal and he’ll only want a change of handlers once Tyler gets home. He does love his Man Time

The next celebration coming up will be Dmitri’s birthday and I’m pretty sure That’ll be the next post unless we do something exciting. I think for the most part I’m going to keep Dmitri pictures to a minimum here and post most of them on my Facebook. I’ve set my privacy settings so that only friends can see what I post and I would like to keeps pictures of him more private. Anyone can read this blog, which is cool, but I do want to keep Dmitri more protected.

I will post a couple lot of Christmas pics because they are too cute not to share!

 

All Teh Things!

So, it’s been a while. I can’t really say that I was too busy to post anything because, really, I wasn’t that busy. Well, I was but not busy enough to justify not posting anything. It’s just that, summer here is really hot. The kind of hot where, after walking 3 hours and being completely soaked, the last thing I want to do is sit at a computer and made a post. It’s a shit reason but there it is.

Now that it isn’t disgustingly hot and gross and I’m not sitting in a basement full of spiders, I can update y’all on what we have been up to (even though if you are friends with us on facebook you’ll already know). The last post left off with me starting volunteering. It was a lot further away than I was expecting and since driving isn’t an option and the bus took just as long to get there, I walked. For 1.5 hours each way. I think the only good thing that came out of that horrendous walk was that I got into shape. Which is nice.

I went to Toronto for May Long to visit my step-sister Jenny. We drank and walked around and drank and went to Niagara and drank (notice the theme). It was a lot of fun and nice being back in Canada, even if it was just for a weekend.

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Around Tyler’s birthday in July, his parents came to visit us for a couple days. We were in the middle of our house hunt so we took them to a few prospective houses and a few that we hadn’t seen before. We thought that we had narrowed it down to our couple favourites.  After they left, we went to look at our favourite houses again and were ready to put an offer on one of them. unfortunately, the morning we went to go see it, it had been sold. We were thinking of putting an offer on the other house but before we did, our Realtor took us to see another house that had just come back on the market, and was down a street from the one we were going to put an offer on. Pretty much as soon as we walked in the house, Tyler and I knew it was ours. Then we walked into the kitchen and I knew it was mine. I didn’t even remember the rest of the house because I was so distracted by the kitchen. Tyler remembered that the master had a walk in closet. I did not.

We thought about it for a little bit and then made an offer. Happily for us, it was accepted!  We had about a month or so to get the financing etc and get ready to move. Well, kind of. In the middle of August, Tyler and I returned to Victoria to watch his brother get married. It was a wonderful wedding full of family and friends and love. I was asked to be MC for it, which I happily did. It was a lot of fun and I was honoured that they would ask me.  The only embarrassing thing I did (at least I think it was the only thing, you’d have to ask Tammy…) was I gave the biggest y’all ever. Immediately following my American outburst, I dug into my Canadian roots and appologised for sounding so American.  For those of you who haven’t talked to me on the phone or face to face, I have picked up quite the Michigan accent. Of course it is muddled with Halifax, general Canadian and a little bit left over from Japan so basically my speech is just a mess. Oh well.

We took possession of our new house about a week and a half after we got back from Victoria. Which meant I had a week and a half to pack. The reason I had so little time is because the sellers asked if we wanted to move up the possession date and of course we did. We didn’t really think of the consequences, we were just excited to move in. Somehow though, we got packed up and ready to move in the short time we gave ourselves. Our friends David and Megan helped us move, which is nice. We learned that moving my piano is a pain in the ass and that paying $200 to move it is a really good deal!

It’s taken us a while to get settled and unpacked. We had no furniture so had to buy a few things. We are still missing a lot of furniture but don’t mind waiting till we find something perfect.

We are very happy with our little life here in Kalamazoo and are excited to see what is in store for us in the future. In the mean time, here are some pictures!

Our silly purchase that was totally worth it. Especially when it's on a super sale.
Our silly purchase that was totally worth it. Especially when it’s on a super sale.
The curve...
The curve…
Mmm BBQ
Mmm BBQ
Our new table
Our new table

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The weed whacker
The weed whacker
My brand new washer and dryer because the house didn't come with any.
My brand new washer and dryer because the house didn’t come with any.

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The walk-in closet I forgot I had
The walk-in closet I forgot I had

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Our tiny non-Michigan car.
Our tiny non-Michigan car.
Going from the master to the living room.
Going from the master to the living room.
Our living room. Yes the kotatsu is set up and yes I know it's only September. It's cold, give me a break.
Our living room. Yes the kotatsu is set up and yes I know it’s only September. It’s cold, give me a break.
Kitchen from the living room
Kitchen from the living room

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Fancy computer fridge. It measures water for me and dispenses the amount I need... If computers take over the world, this one will be the first I kill before it kills me.
Fancy computer fridge. It measures water for me and dispenses the amount I need… If computers take over the world, this one will be the first I kill before it kills me.
Our little table and the kitty's' bench
Our little table and the kitty’s’ bench
My chalkboard
My chalkboard
From the kitchen to the great room/kitty land
From the kitchen to the great room/kitty land
the Great room/kitty land
the Great room/kitty land
Noklop enjoying some string
Noklop enjoying some string
Going to the office or front door or upstairs from the Great room/kitty land
Going to the office or front door or upstairs from the Great room/kitty land
Tyler's man room
Tyler’s man room
Up the stairs with the fancy wall lights
Up the stairs with the fancy wall lights
Guest bathroom upstairs
Guest bathroom upstairs
The Blue Room
The Blue Room
Noklop in The Blue Room
Noklop in The Blue Room
The Pink Room
The Pink Room
Guestroom
Guestroom
The hallway
The hallway
Powder room off the hall
Powder room off the hall
To the basement!
To the basement!