Parenting 2.0

Posts Tagged ‘baby boy


So here we are, just one month shy of Niko’s first birthday and I’ve almost got a year’s worth of monthly Niko vs. Karate Bear photos. Our little guy, who’s not so little anymore is almost one. Wow.

As you can see, he is celebrating this 11th monthiversary in style, by doing what I can only describe as his first fake smile. When I took these pics I rapidly snapped a series of about 20 or so and then narrowed it down to my fav three. When I started shooting, Niko made this silly smile and squinted his eyes tight each time I clicked the camera. Hello fake smile. But where would he have picked this up? Who can tell for sure? Although, now that I think of it, Niko was hanging out with his two-year-old pal Ruby last week and she often hams it up for the camera…

I particularly like the last pic below; he’s showing his ultimate domination over the bear: “Little black belt, you are no match for Sir Niko! Hiya. Take that! You’re pinned.”

Note: This is part of a series of blog entries that were inspired when Niko wore the bear’s mini karate gi as a Halloween costume. Since then I have used the bear and the costume to document his growth at three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, and now eleven months.


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Last weekend we took a family road trip to Toronto to meet up with Ciocia Ola, Uncle Bruce and to finally meet Little Emi. They were all in town for Bruce’s sister’s wedding.  So we trekked down on Thursday night and spent the whole day with them on Friday as well as a good portion of Sunday, before we drove back to Ottawa.

And didn’t Niko and Emi become fast friends. They started speaking in Polish the minute they saw each other and overall got on quite famously. Or maybe they were just cooing in baby-speak, either way I couldn’t understand a word of it. Anyway, it was great to see them all, and have the whole family together. Emi even celebrated by completely pooping all over her clothes and her mommy shortly before we left (or is that the reason we left?).

Note Picture Titles: 1) Daddy’s Shoulder 2) First Encounter 3) Proud Dziadzio 4) Strollin’


Yesterday I was forced to get my gender biases in check. Thank goodness.

Up until now most of Niko’s toys have been hand-me-downs from his cousin John Russell. He has so many toys that he doesn’t even play with all of them, but has taken to favouring a few: his box of blocks, a  little Tonka train set, Sophie (of course), and a few other randoms. Every once in a while I switch his toys so he can play with other ones, but his favourites remain the same. Actually one of his favourite things to play with is the remote for the TV or the cordless telephone. He just loves pressing the buttons and will reach for either item when Borys or I are using them.

Mostly for my own piece (or is it peace?) of mind, Niko doesn’t play with too many toys that make noise. You know the ones. They’re battery operated, and have sirens and buzzers, and other annoying sounds… I can’t really stand those types of toys: they make too much noise! So, Niko has been somewhat shielded.

This weekend we went to Marc and Mel’s house for lunch. Little Talia, who is about a year and a half old, has so many different toys and Niko had a great time playing, especially with the noisy ones (insert tiny feelings of guilt projecting from me, here.) He especially took a liking to a piano and a cell phone. Even I had to agree, this battery-operated cell phone was pretty cool: just big enough for his tiny hands, with lots of buttons to press. So after lunch Borys and I headed to the mall to get Niko his very own phone: seeing as he has a hankering for our cordless anyway, and he was having such a good time with Talia’s phone, we figured he might like to have a phone of his own.

When we got to Toys’R’Us the only phone I could find was hot pink and our conversation went something like this.

Me: Hmm…there has to be a blue one, or another colour. I don’t’ want to get him a pink phone.

Borys: Alli, it seems like a good phone, so why not?

Me: I don’t know. But I’m going to look around the store and see if I can find a different one.

10 minutes later…

Me (holding the hot pink cell and an alternative): So I found this other one.

Borys: Yah, but I don’t like it as much.

Me: Me neither.

B: So why don’t we just get him the pink one?

Me: Hmm…

B: Come on. It’s a nice bright vibrant colour and just because he’s a boy it doesn’t mean he can’t have a pink toy.

Me: You are totally right. Let’s get it.

So that’s the story of how Niko came to own a pink cell. And does he care that it’s pink? No. I’m just wondering why these colour biases are so deeply ingrained? I mean I think I’m a pretty open-minded person, but for some reason I was putting the brakes on getting a pink toy for the the Little N Man. But Daddy was right: it is a nice bright colour, and what’s wrong with that? Nothing.


We’re having a what? A date! A what? A date night!

Oh yeah, I think I remember what those are, but it’s a been a while. It’s all coming back to me now. Yes, a date. One of those things where Borys and I go out together, just the two of us, where we do something fun, like eating out or going to the movies, where we have some time together, alone, sans baby, sans poodle. Yes a date. I remember what those are, and they’re a good thing! It’s all about balance, right?

Gramma’s in town and that means Borys and I can head out on the town. Well, if you count eating out at a nearby restaurant and then going to Chapters, as “going out on the town”, then yes, going out on the town is what we are doing. Borys and I have only had one date since the birth of our lovely little baby boy (and that was also courtesy of Gramma’s babysitting service), so this night has been a long time coming. Just think about how many dates we could go on if she actually lived in Ottawa… But then again, maybe that’s why she doesn’t. 🙂


Growing, growing, growing this baby keeps on growing! And the time has come to say au revoir to his bassinet.  It was good to him, and lasted him for over three months, but he has now outgrown it.  And how do I know that he’s outgrown it? Well, when the tip of his head and the tips of his toes are just touching at either end, I think that’s a pretty clear sign.  Also, at times his arms startle him in his sleep: I mean they flail and move about, but it has gotten to the point that when he does these jerky movements they hit the side of the bassinet and wake him up! And we don’t want a sleeping Niko woken up just because his arms don’t have room to flail about as they wish!

So the bassinet must go, and has actually officially been replaced (for now) by his Pack’n’Play.  This little device has a built in bassinet, that is raised up, so it is still pretty easy to pick him up and lie him down.  At some point – sooner than later – we want to move Niko into his crib.  But before we do that, buying a crib mattress is sort of imperative! Also, we still like him sleeping right next to our bed, so we can keep a close eye on him, and also for the convenience of those middle of the night feedings, which yes, are still happening.  But, Niko is growing steadily and is a healthy young boy, so all in all, I don’t really mind those middle of the night feedings, and he has actually become such an efficient feeder that they take way less time than they did when we first brought him home from the hospital.


Today I spent a good portion of my morning reorganzing Niko’s closet.  He has grown out of so many clothes! It is crazy to think that his size really all depends on what perspective you look at it from.

Some of the clothes that I put into storage looked so huge when he first got them, and I wondered when he would ever grow into the humongous digs.  But now, looking at these little outfits, I think they look super tiny and I wonder how he ever fit into them! Considering the fact that he has more than doubled in size since he was born, I guess this makes sense, but wow a few months really do make a huge difference in the life of a newborn!


When I was in Grade 3 my class put on a performance of the Nativity Story.  I was cast as Mary, probably for the sole reason that I had a baby brother that could play Jesus.  My brother Greg was born on September 14th, so he was about three months old when he starred in the play.  Seeing as Niko was born on September 15th – from birth to their first December – that pretty much puts them at the same age.

Maybe it’s because I am a new parent and Gregory was the fourth born, but I can’t imagine putting my little guy in the hands of an eight year old at the front of an auditorium, where I would have no control over what could happen to him.  I mean, he could start to cry, or get hungry, or a million other things! Maybe this is just a hint of what I have to look forward to, when we have more kids: a more relaxed attitude about their schedule and how and when they are handled. So while Niko won’t be starring in any operetta’s this year, who knows what the future holds for his sibs!

Note: In the picture below you can see a grown up pic of what was once Baby Jesus.  Yes, this is Uncle Greg in all his hairy glory, and while his hair certainly fits the Jesus role, you can clearly see, he can’t walk on water! I don’t know, but I think Mrs. Roberts, my Grade 3 teacher, may have had the casting all wrong… 🙂


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