Taking care of my Babies

A couple of weeks ago we had our first set of twins calves on the farm! One twin was doing great from the start and the other one had a bit of a tough time making it into the world and needed a little extra care and attention.

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The second night we had to take her away from her mom and bring her into our warm shop to get fluids into her and keep her temp up.  The next day she was sick with scours, she had bad bacteria in her stomach that was making her sick and giving her the runs. We started treatment and brought her sister and mom into a stall in our tarp barn so that we could keep them all penned up together while continuing to treat the sick twin.  We treated her with antibiotics for 5 days and tube fed her when she was to weak to nurse from her mom.  My girls gave her snuggles and my oldest brought her doctors kit over to the barn in order to make her all better.

By day 3 of treatment ‘Dopey’ as we named her was up and walking and trying to nurse from her momma. By day 4 she was frolicking around in the pen with her sister and on day 5 after her antibiotics we opened the gate and let the trio out of the barn and into the pasture with the rest of the herd.

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There are few things that put a smile on my face as big as seeing a sick baby healthy and happy! As a mother I will do what ever I need to do to make sure my girls are taken care of when sick.  If there is something that they need in order to get better, like antibiotics I will not withhold that from them, same goes for my animals.  Without antibiotics and proper treatment it is very likely that little “Dopey’ wouldn’t have made it through the first week of her life which would have been a devastating loss.

We are lucky to live in a day an age where we have selection and choice when it comes to what we eat and where we get our food from.  What I struggle with is the misinformation out there and the fact that a large number of individuals would rather buy meat that has never come in contact with antibiotics then allow me to take care of my herd.  All drugs have a withdrawal period and that is strictly adhered to, this means that there are no an antibiotics in the meat you buy no matter how that animal was raised. It also means that Little Dopey gets to live.

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Confessions of a Mom who wants to work

I’ve been struggling for a while with the whole stay at home mom gig. When people found out how close we were having our girls (16.5 months) those that had been there said the first year would be a fog but once we made it through it would get so much better. Honestly I didn’t find the first year all that hard, sleep depriving yes but a struggle from day to day no. Our youngest is almost 1.5 years old and our oldest is getting closer to 3 than 2.5 and I am finding this so much harder. They both have their own amazing and challenging personalities. They are developing their egos, testing their boundaries and I feel like my soul is slowly dying.

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I feel like a horrible human being, and a complete failure as a mother because being home with my girls is making me the opposite of happy, which is how I’m supposed to be feeling. I should be grateful and appreciative of the fact that I get to stay at home with my babies and not go back to work but I’m not. I’ve done some research and I don’t think I have postpartum depression because I am not struggling in any other aspect of my life, just with being at home with my girls. I have been keeping this to myself like a dirty little secret, too scared to share it with the world because how dare I have these feelings and emotions and still want to call myself a good mother.

Recently I left home for 1.5 weeks and went to do SPFX work on a TV show in Calgary. That’s a 6 hour drive from where we farm. For those who are just joining me I worked in the film industry for 10 years before falling in love with a farmer and becoming one myself. I had closed that door and didn’t really entertain the idea of opening it until my old FX boss messaged me with a job offering. My reaction to having that offer made me realize how much I missed that part of my life and my husband was so supportive, telling me to go without even one thought to how hard that would make his life. There were a couple crocodile tears shed as I drove away and then nothing but excitement. I worked crazy long hours all week, the way we always do in film and loved every second of it. I didn’t think of my girls much or miss them. I revelled in reconnecting to that part of me that had been put on hold for the last 4 years.

What they don’t tell you about when you are pregnant is all the guilt that suddenly descends on you when you become a mother. The fact that I didn’t miss my girls or think about them 24/7 while I was at work wracked me with guilt, just another thing to point out how much I am failing as a mother. I had been home less than 48 hours and had a meltdown. I posted a video in my moms group (if you don’t have one find one! seriously such an important tool for surviving) I was crying about being overwhelmed, because being at home with my girls makes me frustrated and angry and then I yell and feel bad about being a horrible mom and about not wanting to be a stay at home mom. They helped me accept my feelings as normal and encouraged me to loose the mom guilt monster attached to my back. I have realized that I am a better mom when I get to walk away and come back, wether or not that is for work, exercise or girls night. I had a blast returning to film and am hoping to make it a fairly regular occurrence. I can’t take a full show but the odd week here or there is 100% doable.

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I wrote this because I want everyone who has ever shared or struggled with the same feelings as me to know that they are normal and that they should not be ashamed or feel guilty. Being a mom is the hardest job in the world especially when they are young. We are sleep deprived, they take and take and take without knowing how to show their appreciation or give back and we are constantly trying to live up to unrealistic standards in our societies. We live in an age where perfection is splattered across our lives everywhere, internet, magazines, movies, advertisements, photoshopped everything. Pictures and stories are staged and airbrushed and no one wants to share the bad and the ugly only the good. Its like we tiptoe and push ourselves so hard to keep up with the unrealistic expectations of society. If you want to be a stay at home mom and are fulfilled by doing so that is amazing, honestly I wish I had it in me. But if you are like me and feel that working and spending time apart from your kids makes you a better mom embrace it. Get that guilt monkey off shoulder and give yourself a pat on the back. You are an amazing women, you are strong, multifaceted and you are passionate, never doubt that you are enough ❤️

Career opportunity vrs mom guilt

I am packing tonight and oh so excited to be doing so! I’m not going on trip or anything fancy like that but I have taken 6 days of Special Effects work on a TV show in Calgary! And that my friends is much more exciting in my books! I haven’t done any film work since 2013 when I officially moved out to Saskatchewan and started farming with my man. Don’t get me wrong I love farming and am so passionate about it but film is my other passion. On top of the excitement I am racked with mom guilt because I’m leaving my girls for 8 days and my baby girl will officially be weened. We have been slowly cutting out breastfeeding but me suddenly leaving means it’s for sure over and I’m sad about it. I also feel guilty because I’m not nursing her as long as I nursed her sister but I need this for me so I’m battling through the guilt. I hate to admit this but as much as I love my girls and being home with them I also feel like it is sucking my soul. I know I am so lucky to have spent the last 2.5 years being a farmer and stay at home mom but it is something I have really struggled with. I never wanted to be a stay at home mom and I know I am a much better parent when I have time away to recharge. So I am starting small with 8 days and hope to pick up other week long stints in film as the year goes on.  I hope one day my girls can understand why I occasionally went away for work and feel inspired to follow their own dreams ❤️

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There were 2 in the bed. . .

In case you have been following along you may remember a post from a couple weeks ago about my husband and I sleeping on our livinroom floor 🙈 Our big brain wave was that in removing ourselves from our own bedroom and also the room R’s crib is in that she would realize we were not there in the middle of the night and put herself back to sleep. Well we did have some awesome nights, in fact there was even a night she slept through the whole night!!! That was an exciting first in the world of baby R!  I strongly feel it was a strategic move of her part to lull us into a false sense of security and then slam us with one of her worst nights ever. I’m talking up every 15-30 minutes or just up for multiple hours on end of fussing, wailing, not wanting anything and then wanting to party at 3am. So that made me a rather glass half empty person the next day but we doggedly stuck to our plan. Fast forward a week and she was still having super ruff nights and we were rapidly growing sick of sleeping on a mattress on the floor.

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Last night we figured things really couldn’t get much worse so we moved the double mattress into T’s room, aka the only other bedroom in the house other than our own room.  It took an extra 2 hours of them adjusting and playing before both were sleeping and my heart melted a little to see them snuggled up together. Things were going great and like an idiot I stayed up until midnight enjoying some freedom and Netflix. It was within the first 5 seconds of going to bed that R woke up and the rest of the night was once again horrible with myself and my wonderful husband taking turns. We are on night 2 of our experiment and you may think we are crazy to keep trying but last night wasn’t sleepless because of putting them in bed together it was just R doing her thing. So we are going to keep trying! T was so excited about having R sleep in her bed tonight when we were getting ready and putting pj’s on, except she was very serious when she told R she needs to sleep and no crying!!   If you are reading this please send all the happy sleep dust you can spare ❤️

Farm Fresh all Year

Fall is without a doubt the busiest time of the year for us. First off we are grain farmers so when our crops are ready to be combined, we work as many hours around the clock as Mother Nature allows. Fall is also the time that the majority of our garden goodies are ready to not only be eaten but to also be preserved so they will last the year. I start to resent the garden when it’s been a couple days of picking and I know I need to do yet another round of canning. I’m sleep deprived and usually need to do a parts run or help fix a combine and then or course I usually need to run one as well. So I get tired and burnt out and I start to wonder if it’s really worth it. I wonder if my hours upon hours spent in a hot kitchen preserving or in the garden picking and getting eaten alive by mosquitos couldn’t be better used. Then before we know it we are in the middle of winter and we have time to catch up on sleep and family time. I make my family a nutritious supper that we all get to sit and eat around the table and I realize that everything on our plates we raised and grew. I realize that all those hours in the fall preserving mean my family is eating corn on the cob in January that we grew last summer. I realize how important it is to me that my girls are growing up on food that they helped grow and raise. I stop and have a moment of thanks for the amazing life we have and make a mental note to remember this moment next fall ❤️

Women’s March

Tomorrow morning I am waking my girls up early and even though baby R has a cold I am loading them into the truck and we are doing a 5 hour round trip to Saskatoon. If I was just going shopping I would totally reschedule until everyone was feeling better but tomorrow is much more important then any old errand.

Tomorrow morning we are meeting hundreds of women from Saskatchewan at City Hall in Saskatoon and joining hundreds of thousands of women marching globally. We are marching in support of human rights, this is not a Trump protest and it is not prolife versus prochoice. This is women standing together in solidarity for the protection of our basic human rights. It’s women fighting for their families, for multiculturalism, diversity, safety and equality. This is about supporting everyone, no matter where they come from or the colour of their skin. This is saying NO to anyone who thinks they should have a say in anyone else’s bodies but their own.

Tomorrow I march for my girls, their future children and for anyone anywhere who’s rights are not being respected, who’s rights are threatened and who’s rights have been taken away.

Sleep training in a Tiny Farm House

If you look very closely you will notice that the picture below is a mattress in the middle of a living room.

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When you live in a tiny 2 bedroom farmhouse sleeping arrangements can get creative while trying to sleep train a 13 month old. A couple days ago I decided that enough was enough and as much as I enjoy cosleeping with my youngest for half the night she isn’t getting a good sleep in our bed and neither am I. Right now our current set up has her crib in our room and my toddler has her own room. This works great for half the night but as soon as she wakes up and knows I’m in the same room as her there is no way she is putting herself back to sleep when she could instead have mommy snuggles and boobies. Two nights ago I tried sleeping on the couch and ended up sore so I just gave up and went in there at 4 when she woke up for snuggles. Last night we upped our game and pulled the spare mattress out after the girls were asleep. It fit perfectly between the couches in the living room and I got a much better sleep on it! R still woke up at 4 but she slept from 8-4 all by herself 🙌🙌🙌 The goal is to get her sleeping really well by herself and then we are going to tackle putting both the girls in the same bed in T’s room which should be a lot of fun 😂