So Today I Eat Baloney

Full Disclosure: I have included some affiliate links within my posts. I only recommend products I would use at home or have used in the past. Please feel free to make a purchase through these links as it won’t cost you anymore money but will help me support my blog. THANKS and happy reading!

So I’m sick… again. Seems like since my son started junior kindergarten he has been perpetually sick which leads to our house being a den of germs. I have a deep cough. I don’t “feel sick” but I have this ball of gunk way deep down in my lung that just won’t go away no matter how hard I try to hack it up. Which makes me feel even more stuck in the life rut I spoke of in an earlier post. Just can’t get ahead. I wanted to have at least three blog posts done per week and I haven’t had the ability to meet my goal. I feel so down about it.

I have had a few things going on that had me out of the house and that for sure put me behind. We have been taking a course at our local Early Years Centre on Mondays called “Making the Connection” about early baby development and parent interaction. Which is great and I have met a great group of mothers with babies the same age as my daughter. Getting out of the house is important. We also had a big family Christmas party which had a lot of build up and running around involved last week. My house has been a disaster.

I am so lucky I have a baby that is good. She naps very well at home… about an hour at a time at least three times a day. I can also set her down and she is happy to play on her tummy while I run around and do the things I need to do to survive life! Today I put her on the floor and put on my favourite playlist on slacker and went to work!

So today the heat isn’t working… again. I used my brain though and decided that it would be an ideal day to get the oven cleaned (clean oven + heat = a good day over all!)

I tried to nap while this was happening but of course I had a million things on my mind that I needed to accomplish (first and foremost my blog… so here I am typing this post) while the baby napped so onto laundry I go…

So it is clean… its not all folded but it is clean. This is the most I can hope for on a day where I feel crummy and have to take care of a 4 and a half month old. My almost four year old will be home from school soon and then I will have no chance to do anything else… so ON to getting my kitchen clean before I have to mess it up making dinner.

Dishes done… now if I’m going to get a blog post done (while breastfeeding the baby of course) I need to eat lunch and because I don’t want to cook for fear of more dishes… today I eat a baloney sandwich

I am yet again doing what I can to obtain that feeling of being accomplished and less overwhelmed day to day but tomorrow will be another day…

How do you other moms do it? What steps do you take to get ahead? What are the most valuable lessons you have learned about the day to day grind? I’m still working it out… some days I feel I’ve finally figured it out and then I get another curve ball. I’m finding that the best recipe for me is to throw on some music and do the mundain tasks first and get them over with. Today a lot of my favourite songs came on that really had a “motherhood” theme and all the feels for my kids!

SO I’m going to share my “Baloney Sandwich” songs for a Mom playlist:

You Really Got a Hold on Me – Smokey Robinson and the Miracles

Yer So Bad – Tom Petty

If You Leave Me Now – Chicago

Under Pressure – Queen and David Bowie

Hey Mama – David Guetta

AND a good one to end on…

Believer – American Authors

 

I believe things will always get better… sometimes they get a little worse but then it can only go up from there! CHEERS to a positive LIFE ATTITUDE! 

So I’m sure there are many more songs I can recommend but I am just running out of time and can’t think of anymore! If you have more that should be on the list send them to me and I’ll add them here!!

I hope you enjoyed this post! Please share with your friends and family! Pin IT, Like IT on Facebook, email IT to your relatives, or whatever gets the word out! Also please subscribe to my email updates, that way you will stay in the loop of what is coming to the blog!
Thank you for your support and time! XO Meg

Things To Learn Before Starting Kindergarten

Full Disclosure: I have included some affiliate links within my posts. I only recommend products I would use at home or have used in the past. Please feel free to make a purchase through these links as it won’t cost you anymore money but will help me support my blog. THANKS and happy reading!

SO I realized when my son was about to turn 3 (he is a December baby) that in 9 SHORT months that he would be starting school. My baby would be a BABY when he started junior kindergarten. I was very freaked out… and PREGNANT with my second baby. It was all I could do to not cry about it… my decision to get prepared was out of fear of him being completely unprepared. There were a number of things I did to get him ready AND he WAS ready ans I am so glad that I did. I was advised by my cousin who is an Early Childhood Educator, the school supplied suggestions, as well as a lot of online research. I am in no way an expert and that being said the following article is just how I prepared my son and myself and is in no way expert advice! Use this info as you see fit!

One of our greatest resources was the Ontario Early Years Centre in our town. We are so blessed to have such a great centre for parents to lean on and learn along with their kids. I have taken a few parent programs and we were going to the centre almost weekly (sometimes up to 3 times a week) to just play and enjoy the facility. Where we live the facility has a running room (a big room with bikes and space for the kids to move even on a rainy day) as well as a family room with toys, books and craft supplies. On most days the ladies that run the centre do story time where the kids learn about sitting in a circle and listening to instruction. They also have a program called Kids First which is like a nursery school program run by some of the most wonderful ladies. Unfortunately my son never made it off the waiting list but any of the kids in his play group who got in got very OBVIOUS benefits from that program to prepare them for kindergarten.  I learned a lot about what my son needed to get prepared from the OEYC for sure. I learned that he hated sitting in a circle, he was good at play learning, he was a very visual learner and he was good at making new friends (as long as he introduced himself by his full name). I suggest if you live in Ontario that you see what the Early Years has to offer in your community. Like I said before we are SO lucky that we have such a great centre and our county helps a lot with funding.

My local OEYC Facebook page posted the video from Today’s Parent that sums up some really important things.


The most important thing (especially for the younger kids starting when they are 3) is potty training. Teachers can’t help kids in the bathroom so it is VITAL they can use the toilet, pull up their pants and wipe themselves clean. I know that we worked really hard on getting my son prepared for this before school. The Early Years Center was an excellent place to practice him going in on his own and doing it all by himself. I can say we accomplished this task before school started even if he had a few accidents at the beginning.

This next item goes “hand in hand” (pun intended) with the potty training point. Washing their hands on their own is VERY important. I know that my son has been in school for three months and is on his third round of a cold. I’m still working hard on getting him to use soap every time but he is getting better all the time. If you want to ward off the gross bugs that go along with starting school get your kids used to washing their hands before and after eating, after the washroom and anytime they touch community toys. This is hard I know with toddlers but they will catch on if you make this normal. The video above suggests getting them to sing a song while they do it to ensure they do it long enough and this has worked for my son and myself. We sing twinkle twinkle little start start to finish every time!

Another important thing you and your chid must master before school is dressing themselves. There are usually up to 30+ kids in each kindergarten class and the teacher can’t help dress each and every one of them. This is very helpful for your teacher if you can get your kid to dress themselves. If they have an accident (trust me it will happen no matter how prepared you are) you want them to be able to put on their own underwear and pants. When they get wet socks they should be able to change them on their own. When going out for recess and home at the end of the day you want them to be able to put on their own coats, gloves and shoes. Get them shoes that are velcro or have no ties so they can put them on easily.  Mabel’s Labels has a great product for helping them put on their shoes on the right feet as well as label them so they come home:

You will also want to work on recognizing their own name. You will have to label everything (and I mean EVERYTHING… three months in I’m still using labels from my Big Kaboodle Mabel’s Label pack!) now you have them labeled you need them to be able to recognize the labels. No use in having the things labeled if you have to go into the school every other week to collect it. I put cute dinosaurs on our labels to start to help him have something familiar to look for. Now he knows his first and last name and knows to bring home his things every day! The next step is to have them write their own name. They will learn this in school but you will be so much further ahead if you can have their first name mastered. We tried practicing during the summer prior to school but my son refused. He was doing it all on his own within two weeks of school so sometimes you can’t push it… sometimes the teacher will have an easier time and that is ok too.

Another very important thing to learn is how they can open and close their lunch containers. The first step is to get kid friendly containers. I talk a lot about this in my post about What To Buy For Kindergarten. I love love LOOOOOVE the Yumbox  and how easy it is for the little hands to get open and closed and it is leak proof. Teachers and classroom ECE’s have a lot of kids to support in a day and they can’t open containers for everyone. I still help my son along by opening applesauce pouches and replacing the lids, taring the wrapped items like granola bars and I even take the straw out of the rewrapped package and tape it to his juice box to help him do it on his own. This will help his teachers and the support team by freeing up that little bit of time for other kids who might actually need the help.

We faired pretty good on that list of things to learn. We got most of them mastered or nearly mastered by the end of August. My son is lucky to have a smaller class with only 20 kids and so I don’t have to worry too much about him not getting the help he might need. Some kids aren’t so lucky so if they have a parent who can help them with the above list they will be that much further ahead when they start kindergarten! Best of luck to all the moms and dads who have kids who are starting the big JK this coming fall! Time to get to work!

I hope you enjoyed this post! Please share with your friends and family! Pin IT, Like IT on Facebook, email IT to your relatives, or whatever gets the word out! Also please subscribe to my email updates, that way you will stay in the loop of what is coming to the blog!
Thank you for your support and time! XO Meg

Cream Soup

Print Recipe
Cream Soup
This is a hearty soup that has lots of options depending on how you are feeling. It can be vegetarian or you can add a meat stock or meat into the soup.
Cuisine Home Cooked
Prep Time 15 Minutes
Cook Time 1 Hour
Servings
People
Ingredients
Cuisine Home Cooked
Prep Time 15 Minutes
Cook Time 1 Hour
Servings
People
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Saute the onion and celery in the butter until tender
  2. Stir in the flour, pepper, salts and stir constantly to cook the flour
  3. Gradually add the broth
  4. Stir to mix in well. Cook the stock mixture until slightly thickened
  5. Add cooked vegetables and cook for a few minutes until incorporated
  6. Add milk and cheese. Do not boil
  7. Optional: Use a hand blender to blitz the soup
Recipe Notes

Here are a few variations I have tried (and LOVED) of this recipe:

  1. Puree the Broccoli prior to adding to the soup for a silky smoother version of this soup.
  2. Use corn and cooked ham as the "vegetable" component for a corn and ham chowder version.
  3. Try shredding the onions instead of chopping them to hide them for picky eaters
  4. Try using cooked potatoes instead of flour. This makes for a nice heartier style soup. One of my favourite variations!
  5. Use bacon fat instead of margarine and add the bacon back at the end for a bacon version
  6. Add ginger and butternut squash as your vegetable but substitute coconut milk for the milk... Mmmm
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Do You Ever Get Stuck In A Life Rut?

Do you ever get the feeling like no matter what you do you can’t catch up on LIFE? Never ending laundry, dishes, waiting for the bus to come, picking up after kids and the circle goes round and round? I have for sure found myself in this predicament currently. I feel like my wheels are spinning in place no matter how I try to get ahead.

I wonder if it is just this time of year. That no mans land between summer and winter called autumn where winter routines haven’t kicked in and the change in time affects everyone to varying degrees. Sleep isn’t what it was in August and the weather is just BLAH to say the least. Things just seem to keep ticking on like we are just going through the motions. I feel this hardcore today and for the last week. I’m not feeling depressed just UNACCOMPLISHED and underwhelmed at the same time.

I want to get so much done with my limited free time but I feel like that free time is getting eaten up with the day to day things that never seem to stay DONE! I would LOVE some ideas you have out there in the world on how to get past these things. This is one of those rare blog posts where I don’t have a solution and DARE not give a gimmicky made up solution either. I want to hear from you!

So this is the time in the post where I’m going to go through all the ways you can contact me!

INSTAGRAM: I use Instagram quite often if not every day. Lately I feel like I haven’t even had time to do that! NONE the less you can contact me there @meganplainandtall Please follow me even if you don’t need to contact me. I’m always up for sharing fun photos and not so fun ones like the one above!

EMAIL: You can email me anytime! I am really good at getting back to emails as they come right to my pocket computer (AKA my phone ha ha ha) and love feedback and blog ideas so send what you may!

CONTACT FORM: Oh yes… I have one of those! If you don’t want to leave my site (and why would you want to right?) you can zip on over there to the Contact Me page!

FACEBOOK PAGE: This is in the works… I will update this post when it is ready so you can obviously just click through… One of the things I want to be done but can’t get to until I have fed, bathed, put the kids to bed and all the many other life chores are complete… Check back for that!

PINTEREST: If you are over at Pinterest more than anywhere else… I’m there too! Message me or follow me if you want! @meganplainNtall

NEWSLETTER: I have a newsletter! You can sign up to and get all the site updates on the regular HERE! Do it. For Me? So I feel like I have gotten something done today?

GOOD luck all with getting YOUR life stuff done… when you do… let me know how you did it!

I hope you enjoyed this post! Please share with your friends and family! Pin IT, Like IT on Facebook, email IT to your relatives, or whatever gets the word out! Also please subscribe to my email updates, that way you will stay in the loop of what is coming to the blog!
Thank you for your support and time! XO Meg

My First Birth Story

Full Disclosure: I have included some affiliate links within my posts. I only recommend products I would use at home or have used in the past. Please feel free to make a purchase through these links as it won’t cost you anymore money but will help me support my blog. THANKS and happy reading!

So I guess it is finally time to do a post about MY FIRST BIRTH STORY. I know a lot of people enjoy reading all the details of how a special little baby came into the world… So here goes:

So I had just turned 29 years old and started thinking about how the next birthday coming around for me was going to be my 30th. This made me think that if I was going to have a baby I had better start to seriously think about it. I had been laid off from my job (which I didn’t love anyway) the Christmas prior to my 29th birthday and that spring started to discuss seriously about getting pregnant with my husband. We hd been together for 9 years and married for 2 so it wasn’t an outrageous thing to talk about. My husband was on board and we started trying in March of 2013 and to my surprise we got pregnant pretty well right away. We can’t be sure but we think he was conceived while we were on a March Break trip to Myrtle Beach SC. My original due date was January 10 2014. So began my first experience with being pregnant.

So this magical journey of being pregnant started out PRETTY rough. I had extreme morning sickness (I liked to call it ALL DAY sickness) from morning until night, bedtime started being 5:30pm some nights, for the first 15 weeks. I would say the first trimester was my least favourite time in my entire life. The second trimester I started to feel less sick and had a pretty easy time. The third trimester was very uncomfortable. I had a very long baby inside me that had a knee or a foot in my ribcage at all times. I can say honestly I didn’t LOVE being pregnant but I enjoyed the experience of learning what it was all about.

Some of the books I read included:

What to Expect When You’re Expecting is a GREAT book that walks you through pregnancy. My mistake was putting it on my Kobo and syncing it to my Facebook for all to see. I got a message from one of my husbands cousins asking if I was pregnant and I was horrified LOL I immediately took down all my Kobo settings ha ha ha. This book I highly recommend! It is a great gift to a friend who is pregnant for the first time.

Mommy IQ: The Complete Guide to Pregnancy by Rosie Pope was another book I read and LOVED during my first time pregnancy. She is very knowledgeable and I had watched her show Pregnant In Heels and enjoyed her British ways. I enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone who is pregnant.

One THING I highly recommend if you are pregnant or planning to be:

The Jolly Jumper Mama Sleep EZ Body Pillow was a life saver and ABSOLUTELY worth the money. I used this sucker for both my pregnancies and I wouldn’t be able to sleep if I didn’t. I was so grumpy as I was getting less and less sleep and this was a life saver!

I was originally due January 10th but when I had my ultrasound the tech changed the date to December 27th 2013. I really wanted a January baby. December babies are the youngest in their classes and a baby born at the end of the month has to share his/her birthday with Christmas. My doctor was planning on being on holidays during the Christmas season so he agreed to leave me unchecked while he was away to hope to stretch out the date until January.

I worked up until the last day of work before the Christmas season. Everyone made the holiday plans local so I didn’t have to travel. My mother in law came for a few days and left Christmas day. I was so tired I decided to leave the dishes until Boxing day, ate a turkey sandwich and went to bed early as I was exhausted. Above is the last picture of me before the big event lol a little blurry but real lol. I woke up about midnight on Boxing Day with my first contraction. I wasn’t sure I was actually in labour, I thought for sure they had to be WAY more intense and if I went to the hospital they would send me home. I went into the spare bedroom and laid down to try and go back to sleep. I also used my phone to start timing the contractions… it didn’t take long for me to realize they were about 5 minutes apart. I called the hospital and the nurse in the maternity ward told me to have a hot shower and then head in. I took this advice. Then I went and woke up my husband. It was about 3am at this point and I thought for sure we would still be sent home or have HOURS and hours of labour to deal with so I wasn’t anxious or in any sort of rush. My husband sprung up and we jumped in the car. It was a brutal snow storm so it took us a slow go to get to the hospital which is normally a 25 minute drive. We got to the hospital safe and sound about 4am.

My first question was “When can I get drugs?” the nurse checked me and said “Oh you are already 8.5 cm dilated so you are too far along.” I couldn’t believe it. This meant I would be doing it naturally. I laid on my right side for an hour and progressed quickly. My doctor was on holiday so I had the doctor on call deliver my baby.   I was pushing by 6amI also did get an episiotomy to help with the delivery. My beautiful baby boy was born at 7:05am. He was an amazing 7lbs 1oz and 21inches long. AND I WAS IN LOVE. We had to call my mother in law to drive back the two hours and all my family was up north at the cottage. They all came back to meet the bundle of joy we had on Boxing Day 2013.

I learned that it IS possible to give birth without drugs. If I did it anyone can. Not everyone is as lucky as I am with a 7 hour start to finish labour and delivery but women are strong. You are stronger than you think but that doesn’t mean you CAN’T have the epidural. I went in wanting to have it but wasn’t able to get it. Choose a birth plan that suits you and if you have to change your plan during the event don’t worry Mama once you have that baby in your arms you won’t have time to regret the things you did or didn’t do… all that matters is your baby is healthy and you are happy. I know I was.

Writing this post brought up ideas for other posts… the days and weeks after having a brand new baby for the first time was a whole other learning experience. Let me know if you have questions or ideas you want me to write about.

I hope you enjoyed this post! Please share with your friends and family! Pin IT, Like IT on Facebook, email IT to your relatives, or whatever gets the word out! Also please subscribe to my email updates, that way you will stay in the loop of what is coming to the blog!
Thank you for your support and time! XO Meg