Raising a Man

I have mentioned this before, but prior to having Lucas little boys were a foreign entity to me, having grown up solely with sisters, and having mostly girl cousins to boot.  I was equal amounts excited and scared for what the future held for me when I found out I was expecting a baby boy.  I didn't really know what to expect, but figured that a lifetime of cars, trucks, and anything that revolved around a ball and sports would be running my life forever.  I wasn't really far off on that prediction.

But you want to know something.  I have loved every single minute of being a boy mom, and I can't wait to double that when this little guy arrives in 6 short weeks!

Boys seem to always have an endless amount of energy, pretty much only stop when they are sleeping, I never have a moment of peace until bedtime, and I know far more about trucks and cars than I ever thought was imaginable.  Scrapes and bruises are a common occurrence around these parts, and death defying climbing has already started giving me heart attacks on a regular basis.  Boys are also to a large extent so much more low maintenance than girls; he falls down yells out I'm ok and is on to the next adventure; starts having a tantrum most often than not a snack changes his mood (which reminds me boys are ALWAYS hungry); and daddy may be his hero and teach him all about hot wheels but its to mommy's arms that he always runs to in pretty much any situation.

I am raising boys, who will be teens, and one day men in their own right, and I don't have to look very far for a model in which to raise them.

I lucked out in the husband/father of my children department.  He is a kind man, puts his family's needs always first, is compassionate when necessary, fiercely loyal and protective of the ones he loves.  He can use a washing machine, show the kitchen whose boss, and never complains about vacuuming for me.  He's a provider, but never once makes me feel like my work at home is less than his own, and if anything helps me more than most men who are working all day.  He is an amazing role model for our sons on how to be a modern man.

I want nothing more in life than to raise our sons in that emulation.  I am completely aware and conscious that one day they will also be husbands and fathers, and I want them to be just as hands on as their father, and I have this innate responsibility to ensure that they are strong and purposeful men in their futures.  I never shy away from the stereotypical gender roles that my parent's generation grew up with, knowing that girls were raised to take care of the home, and boys to provide for their families; however I am a firm believer that those traditional roles have no place in the world that I am raising my sons.

I want them to learn to cook, clean after themselves, and be aware that they should be fulfilling those roles at home just as much as their future wives.  I want them to grow up respecting a woman, and provide a safe and happy home just as their father is doing everyday.  I want them to learn to fend for themselves and to never live in a world that teaches men that women should be putting the food on the table and keeping the house clean and organized.

I love that Lucas loves to be in the kitchen with father and I, that he is keen on helping me switch the laundry (which has been a blessing in disguise during this pregnancy lol), or that he knows exactly what a vacuum is supposed to do.  This also makes for learning experiences with him, and lord knows I can actually get some stuff done around the house if Lucas thinks its a game, which is what I do; make it fun for him.

 I'm not encouraging any child labour around these parts, just encouraging a little boy to a man one day.  I'm sure his future wife will thank me one day.



Niagara Family Getaway {June 2014}

Its been well over a month since we went on a little family vacay to Niagara Falls.  We wanted to just get away for some family down time before the hubby moved to a new job site that I knew would eventually be taking a lot of his time, plus we are saving the bulk of his time off for when the other little mister makes his debut in September.  We have actually never gone away with Lucas before, due to time and financial reasons and we weren't really sure how he would handle a new environment for naps and bedtime since he is a pretty routine kid.  We learned a few things on this trip but I must say that overall he was amazing.
The trips is a mere hour and half for us, and we decided to time our departure during Lucas' naptime to avoid any shenanigans and upsets from the little guy who for now still hates extended periods of time in the car.  We arrived in the city literally just as he was waking up from him nap, so I'm calling that one success so far.  We checked in, got settled in our room, and let Lucas explore the new surroundings.  We had no plans for that evening, since the real purpose of the trip was our plans for the water park the next day.  We headed to an arcade style area across the street where thankfully Lucas was happy just walking around and exploring the different "rides" without insisting on wanting to partake in any of them, score for mommy and daddy since those things are pricey! 
We headed to the Rainforest CafĂ© for dinner.  Lucas was in love with the scenery since he loves animals and being in "nature".  The waitress had advised us that there would be periodical "thunder storms" and we thought Lucas would get a kick out it, yup not so much.  The first time it happened he looked all around in such concern that you thought he was sure that some apocalyptic downpour was going to ensue.  Thankfully he got used to them eventually even if he was never a fan.  We never really have too many problems dining out with Lucas, he's pretty happy walking around for a little bit, or stays entertained with a video on our phones until his dinner arrives.  Then he will sit through his whole meal no problem.  Kid was hungry that night!  We finished our meals well before Lucas did, and while we usually take leftovers of his meal home, he cleaned his plate of pasta clean!
Before heading back to the hotel for bedtime Gianni took Lucas to the glow in the dark mini put.  While Lucas has no concept of the game, he loved running around the ball, and since the hubby has not enjoyed his usual golf game since Lucas was born, I'm pretty sure he was enjoying himself as well.
We pushed bedtime an hour later to avoid any antics, and Lucas went down no problem.  He did wake up in the middle of the night and transferred to our bed with us, but I'm blaming myself entirely for this problem.  First I didn't bring a night light, so even though the bathroom light remained open with the door slightly ajar, it was definitely darker than what he is used to.  Also I should have brought his aquarium with us, for some sort of comfort.  Finally our child is so tall, that the crib provided by the hotel, while appreciated was so small for him; and I really should have just asked for a small fold out bed and I'm sure he would have been much more comfortable. 

The next morning after breakfast we headed to the Fallsview Water Park that was connected to our hotel through a large skyline bridge.  There are really no words how much fun we all had at the park.. Lucas has always loved water and the pool since we introduced him to it at six months.  I have always believed that paying for tot lessons at such a young age is kind of a waste of money but I am a firm believer in making sure that he would not be afraid of the water, so I put the onus on the hubby and I to take him to the pool regularly, and it has certainly paid off.  He was not allowed down any of the big slides, but our little fearless one would have gladly gone down them had he met the height requirement.  We had brought lunch fixings with us so that we could have a quick lunch in our room, and then head back to the park, and let Lucas skip his nap for some more quality enjoyment in the water; but he wasn't having it.  After lunch he snuggled against me in the large king and just fell asleep for almost two hours.  Hey who was I to complain and deny the kid a family nap time!

We enjoyed a great dinner that evening, where Lucas walked the whole half an hour to the restaurant, and then again all the way to the falls!  He's so independent, and while by the end he was asking to be put in the stroller for a break, I sometimes find it lucky that he likes to walk on his own, always requesting that we hold hands. 

The last time the hubby and I were at the Falls was for our first dating anniversary and we have an identical picture to this one.  I actually recently found an old journal entry of mine from that trip, and wrote about how I knew that it was only a matter of time before him and I started planning a future together, getting married and having children, so its kind of nostalgic and beautiful to come back indeed together still and with our son.

We ended up leaving early the next morning, since there was little else we wanted to do in the area with a little one in tow.  For our first time away with a little one, I think we all did ok, and I am already planning, and looking forward to a big week long family trip next April with both my little boys! 



Birthday and Family Fun Weekend

Today is technically our Monday, as we are coming off of a long weekend celebrating Canada Day, and the hubby was fortunate enough to get both Monday and Tuesday off, for a much deserved break.  It was one of those epic summer weekends, where we spent 95% of our time outside, in the sweltering heat, but blissfully happy nonetheless.

Saturday the hubby took advantage to get some more work done on our kitchen ceiling renovation with his dad, so Lucas and I took off for the morning and spent it with my sister and niece.  They live about 45 minutes away from us, so its not always easy to see each other regularly, add to that busy lifestyles well it had been a while since we had hung out, and we were all missing each other.  We headed to the farmers market near my sisters house which conveniently has a splash pad that helped everyone cool down considerably.  Seeing the two cousins play and interact with each other is by far one of my favourite things to see.  They are about 18 months apart, and my niece Emily is such a doll with her cousin, while Lucas "plays" with her but still wants nothing to do with her per say, what a typical boy.

I can't get over how they are almost the same height in this picture!  The hubby is a pretty tall guy and clearly Lucas has taken after his father, which just means with baby boy number 2 on the way, I will be a look like a little munchkin in the middle of them by the time they reach their teens!

We headed out to dinner just me and the boys later that night to begin the celebrations for the hubby's birthday on Sunday.

Is there any better way to begin your birthday morning than snuggled up to this cup of sunshine!  The look of love and contentment on the little man's face is to die for, and it really seemed that he understood that it was daddy's birthday cause he was all snuggles and kisses for his hero.

We had breakfast with Gianni's family that morning, and then we took Lucas to a splash pad near my in laws.  I wish I had pictures, but this place was a lot larger than the ones near our place, and Lucas was just so overwhelmed and in absolute heaven that the two of us spent most of the time just keeping up with him and chasing him through the water.  It was a pretty hot day so after a few hours even the little man had had enough, so we headed back to my in laws for some lunch and a glorious two hour nap.  Glorious nap for Lucas that is!  I'm always worried about napping elsewhere with Lucas cause he is such a creature of habit when it comes to sleeping and rests much better in his crib, but I guess the combination of the heat and the morning activities had him easily passed out in bed with me, and on top of me!  I slept for half an hour and then I really needed to turn around since my hips are always in pain when I'm sleeping lately, but there was no way I was moving, kid was firmly ensconced on my arms and against me...oh well at least he got to rest.

We spent the rest of the evening hanging out with family and enjoying a lovely BBQ.

Monday, since Gianni had the day off we decided to have a family birthday celebration just the three of us, so we took Lucas to Downey Farms just north of our house, strawberry picking, and for some farm fun.  Funnily enough Lucas is not a fan of berries, he enjoys the taste of them in smoothies, but won't touch the actual fruit, so he literally could care less about picking the fruit.  We spent the rest of the morning just enjoying the farm activities, until the heat started getting too unbearable.  After another nice nap we headed out to dinner and a walk, capping off the birthday celebrations with a movie in bed!

Tuesday was Canada Day, and since we had spent the whole weekend doing lots of outdoor activities we had planned to tackle some home projects before heading to my sister in law's for BBQ.  Instead we vegged for most of the day since Lucas had an awful night, spending more than three hours up in the middle of the night alternating between laying with Gianni and I.  After he finally got back to sleep at 4:30am, it took forever for the hubby and I to actually settle ourselves.  So needless to say we were tired, and doing nothing sounded a lot more appealing.  

Here's my little cutie before heading out to dinner yesterday, sporting some obligatory red!  His new favourite thing to say when I take pictures is CHEESE, its too cute for words. 

Hope everyone else was out enjoying the wonderful weather this weekend!