A Grae Survey

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I don’t really do these things, but a fellow mommy blogger at Team CLEO tagged me last week, and since my housework is done, Miss G s amidst a nice long nap, and all of the questions are specifically about Gracen, why not? Here are the questions she asked and my answers.

1. How many children do you have?

One precious little 19-month-old lady named Gracen Audrey Marie.

2. Do you want to have more? If yes, how many more?

Eventually.  But we’re not in a rush.  I’m selfishly soaking in all of the one-on-one time I get with my little sidekick too much right now.  As for how many, that’ll all depend.

3.  Where do you usually bring your child/children to on weekends?

Since Bradley’s days off change week to week, so do our “weekends”. But since I’m a stay-at-home mama, Gracen and I get to get out and do something fun every day.  Our rainy day favourites include going to the pool, dropping in to local play gym sessions, visiting the library to borrow books, and attending story time sessions. On nice weather days, we usually visit the beach, go to playgrounds and parks, visit the aquarium, check out the farmer’s market, or go to Granville Island.  We also try to get out regularly for walks around our neighbourhood, even if that means gumboots and umbrellas are needed.

4. Does your baby soothe himself/herself to sleep, ever? If yes, how did you achieve that?

Yes.  Always.  We do our nap time / bedtime routine, lay her down in her crib wide awake, and she puts herself to sleep.  It wasn’t always that way though.  For the first year of her life, we rocked and sang her to sleep. It was so lovely to have her peacefully drift to sleep in our arms for that first year, but by the time she was one, we were ready for a change.  What had started as an easy  5 – 10 minute routine, would sometimes become a 45 – 60 minute rocking  marathon.  The bigger problem was that when she woke up in the middle of the night, she didn’t know how to soothe herself back to sleep, so we’d have to rock her to sleep again.

Knowing my daughter’s very strong sense of routine, I knew we needed a plan that would ease us all through the transition.  I  did some online research and came across Dana Obleman‘s Sleep Sense Program.  We bought her Sleep Sense ebook, gave it a read, and started right away.  What I really liked about the program was how clearly everything was laid out and how it offered two options – parents in room and parents out of room.  Since I’m not a fan of the cry it out method, I loved the fact that either me or my husband could be in her nursery the entire time and she was never left crying on her own.

We followed the steps exactly as they were laid out and the process was surprisingly easier and faster than we ever could have hoped for.  Within ten days, we were able to lay our little girl down fully awake, kiss her goodnight, walk out of the room and have her coo herself to sleep and stay asleep for a full twelve hours every single night. Since our transition, Gracen has remained a great sleeper and is able to put herself back to sleep on her own if she does wake up in the middle of the night for some reason.  I really can’t recommend Sleep Sense enough.

5. In your opinion, does your toddler have far too many bumps on the head?

She’s definitely had a few big bumps, but overall, she’s fairly cautious so they’re not a regular occurrence (thank goodness!).

6. What is your child/ren’s favourite indoor game/activity?

That’s a hard one – there are so many!  Right now she’s really into cooking and baking with me, playing with play dough, stamping, using stickers, finger painting, doing puzzles, reading books, playing hide-and-seek, and ‘doing jobs‘ (helping to unpack grocery bags, transferring the laundry from the washer to the dryer, etc.)

7.  Are you happy being a staying at home parent / working parent ?

I’m thrilled to be staying at home.  I know it’s different for every parent, but I honestly can’t imagine having to drop her off somewhere each morning in order to go to work.  I was actually supposed to go back to teaching come January of last year when we were living overseas, but I felt so sick about the whole thing that I ended up quitting my job in order to stay home.  Thankfully my superintendent (and husband!) was more than understanding and supportive of my decision.  Now that we’re back home in Canada, I do substitute teach about once a week when my husband has the day off and can be at home with her, but that’s different. I like that they get a special daddy-daughter day once and a while.

8. Do you have pets?

No, we don’t have any pets as of now.  I’d love to have one since Gracen is such a little animal lover, but we’re just not ready for the commitment, especially since we plan on going back overseas in the next few years.

9. How often do you ‘get out and play’ with the whole family in a week?

Not as often as we’d like. Because of my husband’s work schedule and our little one’s early bedtime (6:30 p.m.), it’s tricky.  We definitely try to get out as a whole family on Brad’s days off.

10. Do you cook?

Yes!  I love cooking actually and it seems my little one might just enjoy it as much as I do.  We only eat a meal out once or twice a month, so there’s a lot of cooking to be done!  Some of what we eat can be seen in my From the Kitchen and Toddler Food categories.

11. Who is your child’s favourite cartoon character / band (e.g. the Wiggles, Sesame Street, etc) ?

To be honest, since she’s only 19 months old, Gracen doesn’t really watch TV.  She does watch about 5 minutes of Baby TV a day while drinking her milk and waking up from her nap, but there are no real characters on that. We constantly listen to all kinds of music, but again, nothing that involves characters.

I know that I’m suppose to tag 11 people, but I’m going to leave that up to you.  If you stumble upon this questionnaire, have a blog, and want to answer the questions about your little one, go for it!

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