Annemarie’s Awesome Links

A nice and odd assortment for you this chilly Wednesday.

The gospel of parenthood according to Tina and Amy.

A teacher shadowed her high school students and was horrified.

I’m pregnant, so why can’t I tell you? (NOTE: this is the title of the article I AM NOT PREGNANT)

If you have any influence over the people who buy gifts for your kids and don’t want an avalanche of stuff this Christmas, send them this: 15 non-toy gifts for children.

You don’t need a toaster to make toast.

10 things no one tells you about being married and the 9 most overlooked things in a marriage.

The original SIDS researcher has come out and said that bed-sharing is not dangerous. Thank goodness, because I think most of us have done it at some point.

How to get a big life. (Contains swears.)

Have a great Hallowe’en! Put on lots of layers for trick-or-treating and enjoy your kids’ candy guilt-free – we’ll just call it a tiny piece of what they owe you.

Wrap-Up: Pelvic Floor Health

Today we had an awesome time learning all about how our insides stay inside with physiotherapist Karin Neufeld. We talked about how our bodies have changed and how we take care of them since becoming moms; the truth behind “I laughed so hard I peed my pants;” the importance of Kegels; and physical activity pre- and post-partum.

Just as a refresher, we did three exercises. Starting from hips in a neutral position (lying flat with knees bent, or sitting directly on the sit bones) and a relaxed core, the first was hold in a fart, then bring the squeeze forward, then release. The second was to simulate the motion of a jellyfish inside our vagina, and the third was to pick up a small object (like a grape) (just for pretend) with our labia.

Karin said that it’s important to practice both the quick-release type of Kegel (which prevents peeing during sneezing, laughing, jumping jacks, whatever),  and also the prolonged Kegel (using the above techniques) in various positions – standing, sitting, lying, and even squatting. She also recommended squatting in the shower and inserting a finger so that you can feel whether you’re isolating the correct muscles and how effective you are.

She talked about the MuTu System – here’s the poster on falling in love with your pelvic floor.

So the moral of the story is that it’s really important to love and respect your pelvic floor, and now you have more tools in which to do that!

And in case you’re not a part of our Facebook group, the link is here so you can ask to join.

Annemarie’s Awesome Links

Last week was all about the parenting gig. This week, I branch out.

Stressed out? Do some colouring. It’s totally a thing.

50 reasons your toddler is awake right now.

How to make a simple salad. Because I honestly had six pieces of pie this weekend, so YAY SALAD. (But always, always yay pie.)

What kids around the world eat for breakfast.

Shine Theory – because I will never stop sharing anything that promotes women working together instead of tearing each other down.

This story made me tear up. Losing a years’ worth of knitting? And then finding it again? Magical. Such a happy story.

A fun little video on the science behind PMS.

Why asking “do you need anything?” is pretty much useless.

Improving house esteem, or, why Pinterest is like thinspiration for our homes.

Happy Hump Day!

This Week: Pelvic Floor Health

This week physiotherapist Karin Neufeld is coming to give us the lowdown on our pelvic floors. Childbirth is ruinous to the pelvic floor and Kegels are only a small piece of how to get them back to doing their awesome work (i.e. supporting our organs and keeping them from falling out, you know, trivial stuff), so come and learn. It’s probably a great week to claim that you wore yoga pants on purpose, too.

EDIT: So, due to convenient scheduling conflicts, this week’s session is actually last-minute Hallowe’en costumes, lead by Danielle, and next week will be pelvic floor health. You can totally wear yoga pants anyway.

Annemarie’s Awesome Links

First: some links related to last week’s session from Maggie.

Here’s one about a minimalist family in the suburbs: http://www.becomingminimalist.com/

This one is minimalism for two single guys but with some great food for thought and ideas: http://www.theminimalists.com/
The family that’s down to 1 pint of garbage a year, Zero Wast Home blog: http://zerowastehome.blogspot.ca/
A sample of the Lean approach at home: http://www.leanblog.org/2013/10/lean-do-try-this-at-home/

And now a round-up that’s entirely parent-related.

 

This one’s been around, but in case you missed it: How parenting is killing marriages.

Everybody loves Pixar movies. Here’s the trailer for the next one.

Being a stay-at-home parent is a luxury for your spouse. An interesting take.

We’re the first generation of parents in the age of iEverything.

10 commandments for the at-home birthday party.

Parenting the first vs second child – hilarious.

Self-care for highly sensitive moms, because not all moms are extroverts.

Tiny overlord is getting stronger – also hilarious.

Another post in the Motherhood Around the World series, but this time, expats who live in the US. So interesting, especially after reading all the others!

Mark Bittman on getting your kids to eat, or at least try, everything.

And finally, this has been around for ages, as in I got it as an email forward in high school and kept it as a Word document, but it is still hysterical. A parenting test.

 

There’s a lot this week! Snuggle up with your beverage of choice after bedtime and read until midnight. Don’t worry, we all do it.

This Week: Mindful and Grateful

This week we’re going to take some time to think about gratitude and its impact and influence on our lives and our children’s lives, and on being more mindful (since we have to be mindful in order to be grateful). It will be a lovely refreshing time!

Also, since it ties in so nicely, bring something to donate to Winnipeg Harvest. Bethel is a depot and they’re always looking for more things.

Lisa-Joy’s sister’s project that she mentioned last week is The Gamba School Project – bring rain jackets and backpacks if you have any.

See you Thursday!

Wrap-Up: Getting Moody

This morning we talked about how to turn our homes into places that we love. Maggie and I shared our thoughts on decluttering and simplicity and their effects on our homes and lives, and here are a few of the highlights:

– The 20/20 rule: if you’re holding onto something “just in case” and it costs less than $20 and takes fewer than 20 minutes to acquire, get rid of it.

– Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful (quotation by William Morris)

– Simplicity and declutter can and should be applied to more than just stuff – time, money, food, activities, screen time, news exposure… all these areas can clutter our lives and make it difficult to actually live.

– To test whether you really need to keep something, put it away in the basement/a closet/the garage and see if you miss it or reach for it. If you don’t, it can go away!

– Our culture has trained us to attach a lot of emotional value to stuff. This is an important thing to examine – it’s okay to take a picture of the object and donate it so it will be used, or throw it away (or recycle it) if it’s past the point of usefulness.

The books we referenced:

Simplicity Parenting (we’ll be revisiting this book more thoroughly in the winter session because it is truly fantastic)

Organized Simplicity

Zero Waste Home

Any more tips or resources? Put them in the comments!