Parenting Class Adventures

8:59 AM Posted by CalgaryDaddy




  Becky and I started the Parenting/Prenatal Classes offered by the Calgary Health Region last week.  It runs 2 hours once a week for 10 classes, which seems like a bit of overkill.  I have taken University classes that almost run that long, but unlike most courses, the stuff you learn in baby class may actually be practical.  ( I still cant remember how to do shift the "supply side" curve on an Economics chart.)  After attending two classes now, I thought I would share some random thoughts...

  •  I was actually surprised that Becky and I were actually on the "young" side when compared to the other parents.  Maybe we just look young ( or because we are just sooo darn good looking?) but I was shocked that the average age of the parents appears to be a few years older than us.  I guess people really are having children later in life now.

  • The Class should actually be called "What to Expect When You Are Expecting...Live!"  I guess we have read up a fair bit, but it seems that a lot of the material covered is common knowledge to me. 

  • LIKES:  Snack-time! Each parent has to sign up and bring a tasty snack for the break. Yummy!    Nutritional and fun.  It reminds me of grade 1! ( Ohhh..the Bananna Bread was good!)
  •  DISLIKES:  Parking.  $7 to park for two hours.  (No wonder our health care is free.) Oh...and the $200 course fee seems like a real deal to me? 

  • I love watching the reactions of the Dad's ( and some of the moms) when they show the birthing videos.  Thankfully, the hospital floor is sanitized daily, as a lot of our jaws hit the ground.  It is a little shocking seeing the video's, but I'll save that for another post.  Wow. 

  •  Attending alone.  Yes, my wife is a teacher and had Parent Teacher Interviews last night and could not attend.  Normally, this would be no big deal. Normally.  However, she missed the one where everyone rolls out the old Yoga mats and the teacher shows us the different birthing positions.  Try doing this alone.  I tried to get a last minute surrogate, but had no luck.  Sometimes its best to just watch and observe.  And take notes....lots of notes.

 I'll keep you posted after each class if anything interesting happens.

Has anyone taken these classes? What was your experience?

Oh...What the heck is Archie doing at a birthing class in the picture above?  Did reality finally come to Riverdale?
   
Shane

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Christmas Party Season...what a tough time to be pregnant!

10:05 PM Posted by CalgaryDaddy




 I must admit that I am so proud of my wife!  As we approach the holiday season, I wonder how hard it must be for pregnant women as they cannot "partake" in the so called Christmas Cheer that is abundant at this time of year! 

 This weekend, my wife and I attended my annual company Christmas party and I must say, I was impressed.  Usually, she is so tired on Friday nights that she is usually down for the count by 9pm at the absolute latest, but she surprised my by holding strong until past 11pm that night!   I cannot imagine how hard it must be for her to stay up on her feet for 8 hours teaching Grade 1 children every day, never mind the fact that she is now 8 months pregnant.  I honestly don't think I could do it.

  Anyone that knows Becky can attest to her love the odd beer or glass of wine.  The fact that she cannot drink must make these Christmas functions all the more entertaining for her.  I can imagine that there is nothing as fun as sitting stone cold sober in a room full of half drunk office creatures.  That said, I am still shocked that she held on until 11pm as she saw that I was having a good time.  Now I must confess that I did not realize that it was that late and I was actually planning on leaving around 9pm.  But....you know how these things go. 

  I have a new found respect for women who trudge through their workdays and continue to have a social life late into their pregnancy.  I now know that this is not easy and I will look at my wife in a completely different light going forward.  ( And not just as the designated driver!) 

What a trooper!

Shane
 












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Next Step...The Nursery!

8:53 AM Posted by CalgaryDaddy

  Wow, I cannot believe that there is just under 6 weeks until Taddy's arrival.  I had spent most of last weekend rearranging our home office to make room for the Nursery.  I had to move the old L-shaped desk into the basement and set up a new 160lbs Monster Corner desk that took forever. ( Note:  I am not handy at all, and the 41...yes 41 Steps were rather time consuming and often confusing!)  With this out of the way, we can now focus on getting the nursery done!  ( Exciting or what!!!)

First Step.... Colour!

We are kind of torn as to the colour we want to use.  The room now is a soft/light brown, which is ok...but dull.  Taddy's grandpa thought it would be nice if we changed the room colour.  His thought...new baby = new room!  We are looking at something neutral, and are kind of leaning towards the green colour ( not the theme though) in the Picture below:




This paint is called "Christopher Robin Swing" by Disney/Behr paints.  Our dear friend Jill had mentioned it to us and we had to check it out. 

Furniture...

We are still piecing together the furniture, but Taddy's grandma's have already purchased us the following sleep stuff!




 This is the Crib we have now.  It is still in the box, but ready for assembly once the room is painted.  We are looking for a matching dresser/change table, which should not be too hard to find. 

The colour should go nice with that green paint, if we go that route.










  Bassinet!  This will likely stay in our room as Taddy will sleep in this for the first little bit.  It is pretty cool unit and has music and lights etc. 






Taddy has the best Grandma's! 



Also, we will put the rocking chair that we just bought ( if it ever arrives!) from Costco Online in this room also. This chair looks super comfortable also









I must say that I am getting excited to work on this room this weekend! 


What are some other popular neutral colours?  Any ideas are welcomed! 

Shane







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Pregnancy Sleep...will she get any?

8:31 AM Posted by CalgaryDaddy





  Oh my poor, poor wife!  With about six weeks left until "Taddy's" arrival, I have noticed that my wife is unable to get any sleep!  And anyone who knows what my wife is like when she is tired ( sorry Neeta, I had to throw that in!) understands that this just is not a good thing.  She has been going to bed earlier and earlier each night over the past few weeks, only to wake up every two or three hours and then finds herself unable to fall back asleep.  Usually, this leads to me being woken up by her constant "sighing", which usually means that she needs me to turn the Ipod radio shows on. ( You know, the old radio shows from the 1940's...before good old TV.)  This usually does the trick....for another two hours or so! 

  We know that once Taddy arrives, sleep will be at a premium.  Perhaps this is natures way of preparing parents for the lack of future sleep?  I really wish that I had a magic solution that could help her stay asleep all night long?

Any suggestions? ( And no, a glass or three of wine is will not work!)


Shane




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Shopping, Shopping and yes...more shopping!

8:56 AM Posted by CalgaryDaddy

You have to love Costco.  Not so much the store, with its long lineups and $50 membership fees ( although I do get my money back through all of their free samples!) but I must say that Costco Online is another story!  I was amazed at how much baby stuff they carry online as opposed to in the physical store.  Here is some of the stuff we bought from them over the past week....



 This is the rocking chair that will go in Taddy's room.  We were looking around for a while for one of these, but Costco had the best deal. My wife loves the fact that it comes with that extra side table.  Pretty cool.

 This chair will get a lot of "cheek" time, so it is worth buying something comfortable.  I cant wait to sit in this chair and feed Taddy!










   Graco Video Monitor: 

   This monitor is the coolest thing ever.  We were looking at some standard monitors at the usual places, but came across this one at Costco as well.  It was almost $100 less than the price listed at Walmart.com, so we knew it was a good deal.  I have not used it yet, but it has a super long range and a colour monitor.   I can imagine that this screen will have our attention for a long, long time after Taddy is born.

 The technology of these monitors seem to have come a long way!


The pic below was not from Costco, but rather an impulse buy on my part. ( I guess there will be many of those types of purchases to come!)   I could not resist these creatures, as they were just too darn cute.  My poor dog Copper still thinks that they are for him, so I had to hide them! 





  Is it normal to get excited about the stuff you have bought, but not used?

Shane





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You have to love the most common pregnancy questions!

6:04 PM Posted by CalgaryDaddy



  You have to love the most common questions received by expecting couples!  I wish we could get on the Family Feud game show and have this as the topic!  We would get the top ten easily!  Rather than go through them all, I thought I would look at some of the most common ones I hear...

 Do you know if it is a Boy or a Girl?   Everyone wants to know and everyone has a guess!  I love the methodology used by some of our friends. ( eg. You are carrying such and such, so it must be a ____ )  While obviously fun, It amazes me how these "old wives" tales make their way through the generations.  We want the sex to be a surprise, so ask all you want.....there is no answer coming from me, lol! 

 On this blog, I will often use "he and she" intermittently when talking about "taddy".  We are not 100% sure about the sex,  but I encourage any and all guesses! 

 Did you guys plan for this pregnancy?   Lol... I love this one.  I answer, ( and belief) is YES!  Becky's is a resounding ( and Quick) NO!  All of our family and friends were SHOCKED when we told them that we were expecting!  They almost all said "I thought you two were not having any kids together"?....  After a few years together, Becky finally had me convinced that we were not going to have any children together and convinced me that the D.I.N.K. lifestyle of travelling, extra cash and sleep was the way to go!

   I am not sure exactly what changed, but just before we conceived, Becky started talking about having kids.  Over the past few years, almost all of our friends were having babies ( or second kids) and we were almost the only "non-parents" left in our circle of friends.  Something must have clicked in her, but I sure am glad.  Some people say the pregnancy is an "oops", but I call it a "Future Prime Minister/Ex-Baby Model in waiting" miracle.  Plus, I was drinking that night, but I am sure that I saw 3 wise men and the north star in the field across from my home! Miracle, Fate...either works for me!

 OMG, are you excited?  

  Of course!  Duh....!

While these questions are pretty common, I am sure people get some real "doozies"...feel free to share!

Shane ( aka Taddy's Daddy) 

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Our Existing "Kids"... aka Fur Babies or Kattans and Pappans

3:52 PM Posted by CalgaryDaddy

  While "Taddy" will be Becky and me's first child, we actually have some existing kids around the house!  We like to call them our "fur-babies" or our Kattans ( Cats) and Pappans ( Dogs).... ( INSERT COMMENT HERE..lol)   We often wonder if they understand that they have a "skin-sibling" on the way?

 In no particular order, here are our pets!



Copper... ( also known as "Ernie", Ernie T. Muppet, Moo-Moo's and Ernie-Face.)

  We got Copper in 2005 as a baby.  The bond between Becky and copper is just amazing and I am sometime envious of the attention he gets, especially his constant cuddles on the couch. ( Ha!)   He is a mutt..(Bichon/Shitzu Yorkie-Poo)

He is also the smartest animal in the house, and loves to lay his head on Becky's stomach, which he runs to and licks when we ask "Where is Mommy's Baby?"... Too Cute!  He is addicted to Squeaky balls and stuffed animals.  We are not sure if Taddy will ever be able to have a stuffed bear of his own, due to Copper's addictions.  A January intervention may be in order.


  Roo:   ( also known as Rudy, Roo-Dee McToots or simply MacToots.)

  We have had roo since 2003, when he was less than one year old. Roo is a 30lbs. ( Becky swears that he is only 14lbs and apparently, so does the Vet) ball of fur.  He is a cuddler, as long as it is on his terms.  He loves to drink water from the sink taps and bang his bowls if the food is not to his liking.  He is a real sweetheart and gentle with the Dogs, even when they bully him. 



 Pebbles:  ( also known as Pebs, Ms. P, Pebble-d-poo and Mee-Mee )

We got Pebs about a year and half ago when she was around six months old.  She is supposed to be a "yorkie", but we think she is mixed with something.  Apart from admiring her runway model good looks, her favorite thing to do is lick faces and make the cutest cuddling poses on your chest.  Her other hobbies include bossing Copper around, stealing everyone's toys, barking at the Dog Whisperer on TV and going for walks.  She is a real sweety. 


Kanga:  ( also known as Angel-Face)

  Kanga was our first pet together and we brought her home as a baby in 2003.  She was a constant purr-er and loved to give everyone, especially her mommy attention.  She loved to wake you up in the middle of the night by rubbing her face all over you.  Her favorite activities were hissing at Roo and Copper and chewing cables and wires!  Unfortunately, our baby Kanga made a mad dash out of the house one night during a Canada Day party and some other family has taken her in.  We searched ( Becky still checks online) for months for her.  We will her and know that some family is pretty lucky to have her. 




As you can see, we have a whole house full of animals to keep us entertained.  I often joke that the animals have it better at home than I do, but I could not imagine our lives without them and I am so thankful for the joy that they bring Becky and me.

 If Becky ever doubts that she will be a good Mom, I just remind her that if she loves Taddy just 1/100 as much as the animals, he/she will be the luckiest baby in the world. After seeing how much she cares for these animals, I know its true.



 
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Wow! Fav Dad2Be Blog Award Nomination

8:21 AM Posted by CalgaryDaddy

I was really surprised this morning to see that a few well respected Mom Bloggers ( thank you sooooo much to all of you) including  Bloggermommies, Grudgemom; Mybloggymind and NannyAnna, were kind enough to nominate me for  "FaveDad2Be" blogger awards! 

 While I am not sure I am worthy yet, I am really amazed by your kindness!  I will make sure that I keep the good posts coming over the next few months! 

To vote/nominate, follow the link here!  I would really appreciate your help!

Shane




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How Did We Get Here? Our Story- Grade 1 to Proposal

9:15 AM Posted by CalgaryDaddy


As per my last post, I was not sure how to begin?  Hopefully, the quick intro gave you a little insight into who this random blogger is!  I thought I would continue on by sharing how Becky ( Neeta) and I got to this point.

 I mentioned that we have been married for two years ( look at the wedding pic, am I lucky or what!)  and we have been together since 2002.  What is interesting though, is that I actually met her for the first time in 1983!!! We were in the same grade one class at Woodbine Elementary school.  Becky moved away in Grade 4 and I never saw her again until fate brought us back together in 2002. 

  We met again at our mutual friend's wedding on 09/1/2002.  After a few hours of trying to win her attention, I kind of freaked her out when I finally realized that I remembered her from Grade 1, twenty years before.  People that know me will attest that I have a photographic memory so this was not out of the ordinary. Unfortunately, she laughed and confirmed that she did not remember me. ( I still tease her that she likely had the biggest Grade 1 crush on me, but would not admit it....lol.)


  Well, we have been together since.  After about 5 years of dating, ( I know, this is a LONG time...) I proposed to her.  After about of year of dating, Becky jokingly drew her dream engagement ring on the back of a coaster one night.  She thought it was thrown out, but I slid that piece of paper into my pocket and saved it for another four years.  When the time was right, I pulled the drawing out and went on a long search for a replica of this ring.  When I realized that this ring was not to be found, I had it custom made at a local jeweler. 

( 11/5/2009-As requested by And Then There Were Three, I have attached the original coaster and the ring!)

 I wanted the proposal to be memorable, so I figured out a keen plan.  I called the principal of Woodbine Elementary (where we went to school in Grade 1) and arranged to get access to the same classroom we shared in 1983.  As school was just about to start for the fall, the only person in the school was the custodian ( who was the exact same gent that worked there when I went to this school 20 years before..!) who let me in as per the arrangement.  I told Becky that I had to "drop off some papers" to the principal, who was a "client" of my office. ( I know, I had to lie...but she would have thought something was up!)   I came back out and told her that the custodian said we could look around, and having not been in the school for many years, she agreed it would be fun.  After a brief tour, I finally got to our original classroom and I proposed! 

The surprise worked....she said yes!





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Where Do I Begin?

12:47 PM Posted by CalgaryDaddy


  First off, I would like to thank everyone who has visited the site so far.  I just set this up yesterday and many of you have added me onto twitter and left some positive words of encouragement!  I am actually shocked by the kind response, so thanks to all of you!  Thanks to everyone who linked as a "follower" also.

 Where do I begin with this blog?  Maybe some brief background information about me would be good?...

  Well, I am a 32 year old, born and raised Calgarian ( Note the link for all of the kind American and British visitors!) and I am employed as a commercial insurance broker. ( Its pretty dry stuff...)   I am active in local politics and I am an active community volunteer.  I really do get a kick out of volunteering and helping others.  I must slow down with the pending addition as my wife is quickly becoming a "committee" widow!

I have been married to my wonderful wife Becky since July 2007, but we have been together since September 2002.   Becky is a rather private person and refuses to use Facebook or Twitter.  She is also an Elementary School teacher with a background in Grades 1-6.  We live in the deep south suburbs of Calgary, in a fairly new neighborhood.  As an added bonus, they are building a school right in front of my house as we speak!  This is great news for "Taddy"!

  I often find myself using slang/nicknames with respect to my wife and baby!  In order to avoid confusion, here is an explanation!

 Becky- aka  " Neeta "  or "Neets" ! Why?  It  started with the nickname "honey"...which moved to "Honey-ta" to just straight "Neeta". Sometimes, I even call her "Becks".  Don't laugh, I know I am weird.

 Baby..." Taddy"  as in " Taddy the Tadpole".  I started calling the baby "Tatiana the Tadpole" even before our 1st ultrasound. ( And before we knew the sex!)  This evolved into Taddy, which stuck.

Am I the only with crazy nicknames? 

Shane


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Welcome!

10:46 AM Posted by CalgaryDaddy



  Welcome to my new blog!  After almost a year of political blogging, I still find this medium facsinating.  As a soon to be new daddy, I thought I would try my hand at a parenting blog.  I hope to keep this blog as lighthearted and fun as possible and look forward to comments/suggestions from everyone.

Please feel free to email me at albertadad@gmail.com or post your comments/suggestions! 


 Here's to the first of many, many posts! ( Hopefully!)

Shane

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