This past week we were closer than ever as a family….physically. We spent a week in a hotel room; not one of those fancy suites but a standard room, queen bed, with a travel crib placed at the foot of it. It was tight, and very, very smelly at times and I’m not solely blaming it on the baby. There were a bunch of little things that either we did or I wish we did that I’m passing on.
As soon as we got to the hotel room we set up shop. None of this living out of our suitcases, throwing stuff on the chair, not putting towels away because the cleaning ladies are coming- we had to be super organized. Every inch of the room was valuable space.
We right away set up a change table area; an area supposed to be used to put your suitcases on, but with enough towels and blankets it was a cozy space for our little rascal. Because you know he’s going to have a massive explosion and you’re going to be rummaging through for baby wipes or something, then he’ll get his foot in it, his hand – you name it, it will happen.
We also called ahead to ensure they had a travel crib for us, one less thing for us to bring. We brought the blankets he sleeps with to get him as used to the space as possible. We brought our wrap, which we only used once as an actually wrap so probably not as needed- but it was the perfect top cover to the crib to keep out the light so at 7pm when he went to sleep we could still have a somewhat normal evening. The one thing that was super useful, which I’m surprised we brought, was his bouncer chair. It kept him busy some days and gave our arms a break. My parents came for a couple days and we made sure their room was right beside ours, so once Lincoln went to bed we could turn the monitor on, lock him in there and head over to our other room for a couple hours of sanity, card games and drinks.
*trust me, he had lots of breathing space- this came off at night once the lights were out*
What I wish we brought- maybe more snacks, or food to eat in the hotel. Eating at restaurants with Lincoln wasn’t the easiest now that he’s interested in food- his hands have cheetah like reaction and gets into everything before we can stop him. We bought formula, diapers and wipes once we got there just to ease the luggage situation. And I definitely would’ve brought our backseat mirror for the car, we spent a lot of the week driving and Lincoln was super bored without it.
All in all – it actually worked out. I thought the nights were going to be terrible but Lincoln slept fine in the crib, we made it work, although a bit stir crazy.
Now my rant. I am starting work tomorrow morning and spent so many hours trying to figure out how to come off EI to return to work. It was ridiculous. My first frustration is that our your access portal it should be a pretty obvious feature- how to stop your EI payments for various reasons. But no – not there. I looked it up online numerous times and ways “how to disable your EI payments” “returning to work after maternity leave” “process of stopping EI payments” etc. etc. and this was the search responses every time. Answers about allowed leave amounts, benefits, which payment you fall into, and then the worst ones were about moms having guilt, how to make it as a working mother, 9 steps to get you back into the work force. WTF.
I don’t feel guilty for working, am I supposed to? It was incredibly hard to find an answer on how to just start working, like it’s a crazy idea. When I called service canada their first question is “how did you get this number” umm… google… is it supposed to be a secret? Then they don’t have the answer but give you a number to call. I called, and I called, and I called..for FIVE HOURS. The automated prompt said they were experiencing a high call volume. I didn’t have the option to get transferred or wait in queue, you’re just disconnected. That’s it- no option but to go through the automated prompts again and again while they tell you the whole day that they can’t connect. Why is it so difficult to stop taking government money? Shouldn’t they want to encourage people to come off EI? I was/am beyond annoyed at the process. I actually never got through and I start work TOMORROW. So 8am you know what I’ll be doing.
Anyways- this will be short as I of course have to go plan my first day outfit, plan my week and try to actually go to bed at a decent time. This mama needs her beauty sleep, and make up can’t always cover it. Wish me luck!
I’m pretty sure at your next reporting period you just enter that you worked… Then it will ask you the hours etc and if you still need it. If you’re over the hours that you no longer qualify for EI you just won’t get it for that week. Otherwise that is it I believe?! Definitely tricky tho!
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