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Archive for December, 2008

So I don’t really push my son to learn to read or anything of that sort. He’s young and I know he’ll learn. But today he learned a few letters because he kept asking me to draw for him and I ran out of ideas. So I wrote a “k” for Keagan. He picked up on it really quickly. So I did a few more. Now he knows four letters and he learned in in five minutes or so. It seems to have stuck. He is happily pointing out “k’s” to me.

Now I feel torn. I am all about natural, child-led learning. But he so enjoyed learning his letters this way. Maybe since he is enjoying it, it is child-led in a way?

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So I thought I would sort of “review” some of Keagan’s Christmas gifts.

He got the “Blue Moo” CD by Sandra Boynton from my mom. Keagan LOVES music, and I want to make sure he has some music time every day, so this was a great gift. We played it today for the first time. A few of the tracks bored him a bit, but, for the most part it had him dancing all over the house. He waved his little hands in the air, he marched, he even pulled out his little toy drum and played along (to the beat, I must add… er brag.) So, minus a few songs that are fine, just not Keagan’s Taste, we loved it. It’s much easier to listen to than a lot of kids music (I can’t STAND little kids singing off key!!) and a lot of fun.

Also from my mom, he got Melissa and Doug “Stacking Emergency Vehicles.” These are also a hit. They are toy car meets puzzle. He loves pushing them around yelling “we-oooh-we-oooh” and also taking them apart and putting them together. He has a little trouble with the puzzle aspect, but he enjoys it and I think he’ll grow into them a bit more with age, which is a good thing. So many toys get boring to kids too quicky.

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The third and final toy I am reviewing today is the “Funrise My Little Rockstar Guitar.” While Keagan likes it, I don’t think he will for long. It’s already breaking! It has a wheel on the front that makes it make guitar sound effects. This wheel is already stuck. He’s played with it four times and it’s already stuck! It’s also annoying and does not really resmble a guitar in the way it’s used. I want to expose him to music, but in a more realistic fashion. And one that does not beep, light up and break in less than a week. I generally like more natural toys and this just reminded me why.

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And just because, here’s a photo of my little guy, playing in the laundry I was trying to fold. Who needs toys when you have a laundry basket?!

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Fierce

So what do you think of the new banner? Hubby made it for me last night. I like 🙂

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Well I can’t believe that 2008 is coming to a close. It’s shocking really.

A lot has happened this year. When the year started, we were so afraid of having another baby after Keagan’s traumatic birth that we thought we’d never have one.  We thought we’d probably have the husband get the “big v” and think about adoption.  Thankfully, a friend convinced me to at least TALK with a midwife about the possibility of getting pregnant.  And I did. I talked to a wonderful midwife and we’re so happy we did. We talked about all that went wrong last time, and how to prevent it this time. The OBGYN group I saw was not about prevention at all… they only acted after something went wrong.

So after talking with the midwife, we decided to start to try to conceive. We thought it would take months -I was still nursing and my cycles were anything but regular. On the midwife’s recommendation, I picked up “Taking Charge of Your Fertility” (and happened to find it at Goodwill for $2! I love thrift shopping!)  and we got pregnant on the first cycle! Even the midwife was shocked to see how quickly I was pregnant!

So thanks to all of that, our sweet Eden will be here sometime near April 4th. And we are very grateful for that. This pregnancy has not been full of any of the problems I faced with Keagan’s. I am visualizing a wonderful, peaceful water birth in a birth center and feel that I will be able to achieve that. And  I think that Keagan will benefit greatly from having a sister to share his childhood with.

Another big change this year came after reading Shane Claiborne’s book, “The Irresistable Revolution.” It really changed how we thought about a lot of things. It’s from a Christian perspective, but I suggest it to anyone and everyone. It’s about humanity;  it’s about love; it is about how human beings should treat one another. It made me think about things I’d never considered before. Now, because of this book, I am not afraid of the homeless. I am not afraid to try and help people in need. We’ve also simplified our lives quite a bit. I’ve gotten really into thrifting after reading about how badly child laborers are treated. I don’t want to support the companies that hurt those kids, plus it is great knowing that I am reusing materials that could have otherwise been thrown away. It brought on a lot of changes for our family, all for the good. When  a friend recommended it to be the first time, I was pregnant with Keagan and just didn’t have the attention span. I am glad I went back to it later.

My husband took a lower paying job this year, but it was a step in the right direction. He’s in a feild that he wants to be in, his job is secure, and he’s moving up quickly within his office. It was a scary choice to make, but it was the right one.

Keagan has changed so much this year. He was a baby when the year started. As the year closes, I have to admit that he’s much more of a little boy than a baby. He’s smart, funny and full of life. What more could a mama ask for?

We also moved this year. Our new home is much smaller, but much better suited for us. It’s kind of in the middle of nowhere, but that’s okay for now. We do toy around with the idea of living in Tacoma, where my husband works. I always thought I was a country girl, but more urban living really seems appealing to us right now. I think that is a change 2009 will bring for us.

All that said, I am ready for our new year and the many new challenges and changes it will surly bring. I am a little nervous about being a mama to TWO kiddos, but I think I am up to it. I kind of have to be, don’t I? 🙂

I have quite a few goals for 2009

1. Read the Bible. All of it. It’s not as if I’ve never picked it up before, I’ve read most of it, many parts over and over again. But I want to read it all and I want to make sure I am doing it every day.

2. Get Organised! My dirty little secret (or not so secret if you know me in real life) is that I am a TERRIBLE hosuekeeper. I will not let this be the case anymore. I won’t! If anyone has any motivation and organisation tips, please let me know!

3. Quit being scared of my sewing machine! I KNOW I can use the thing. I am capable. I need to realize it.

4. Complete 40 craft projects. I love to craft. But I never do it, or I start and don’t finish. I want to do about one a week, giving my self space to take time off with the new baby and to have some projects that are bigger and therefore take longer. I am going to quit drooling over other people’s creations and make my own!

5. Get out more! I’ve been in mama isolation too long. I love my son, but I need to get out. With a second one coming, this is going to be even more important. I am to the point where I get out so rarely that I become awkward in social settings sometimes. EEK. I need to get out. With the kids or without.

6. Get back into my charity work. I was doing great for awhile, but the move, the pregnancy, the holidays etc all got in my way. But that’s no excuse. People are still hungry out there!

7. Find more natural learning activities for Keagan. He is so smart and he just eats this stuff up. I need to nurture his little mind.  I am not talking about flash cards and drilling information into him here. I am talking more about Montessori inspired, child-led activities that will help nurture his learning and creativity.By the end of the year, we will probably be working on a bit more, still child led as he will be preschool aged and we’re going to homeschool him. I have a feeling, however that it will be leaning to the side of unschooling, at least for his early childhood.

8. Be a better cook. I really fall short in most things related to home making, so this is another goal I am going to be working on. I hate processed foods, yet I get lazy and use them anyway. I’d like to stop that!

That’s all I can think of at the moment. Maybe I should stop it there for now anyway. Don’t want to set myself up to fail 🙂

What are your goals this year? Have any tips for me to help accomplish mine?

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So we cloth diaper about 50% of the time. I want to do it all the time, but sometimes the disposables are so darn tempting. We’ve been on a really bad sposie kick – I was so busy getting ready for Christmas, we’ve had a ton of snow and I feared power outages(and this the inablity to wash the cloth) and I just haven’t been motivated.

Well today, I got my motivation.

Keagan somehow tore his diaper. I didn’t notice for a few minutes. The living room got covered in those gross crystal things that fill disposable diapers. It was a gross, messy reminder of why we got into cloth to start with. Disposables are nasty!

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New Name- Same Blog

So I changed the name of my blog. “Mummy Apples” came from Keagan’s word for “Yummy” and his love for apples. Cute and all, but I keep getting blog hits from people looking for ways to mumify apples. I also thought that I should include both kids in the title, even if Eden is still in the womb. “Fierce Paradise” comes from both the kids’ names. Keagan means little and fierce and Eden means paradise or delightful.

Soon to come: I plan on updating the look of the blog, doing something more customized.

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Keagan’s second out-of womb Christmas was nice. He woke up in a sweet and cheerful mood. I made him breakfast and he ate it in bed with Papa while I got everything ready in the living room. Then I read him two board books about the real meaning of Christmas and we went into the living room. He instantly saw and ran to his new toys. They were mostly bigger, so only one was wrapped. He got an easel, a table and chairs I painted with his and Eden’s names, a felt board with embroidered shapes I made for him and a stuffed puppy I threw in at the last minute. I put the puppy in the tree because he had spent the last two weeks trying to “decorate” the tree with his toys. He squealed with excitement when he saw it there. Then he pulled it out and kissed it. Totally worth the 50 cents at Goodwill. 🙂

From there, we went to my parents and enjoyed time with them, my brothers and their girlfriends. We exchanged gifts and Keagan got spoiled, but I guess a little bit of spoiling won’t kill him a few times a year 🙂 I am quite excited about the gift my little bro gave me – a night out while he babysits! Score! Keagan really loved the Larry the Cucumber stuffed toy my parents got him.

After that we went to the inlaws, where we ate dinner and exchanged gifts yet again. So yes, he got a LOT of stuff.

We had a few not so grand moments involving our car getting stuck in the snow (one time for 40 minutes!) but in the end, it was a great holiday and I am so glad to have been able to share it with my family.

I’ll post some photos later. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas filled with love and reverence for the Baby born in Bethlehem.

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