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My Life, Recently

May 30, 2012

LPK found this most amusing at the zoo: trying to pick locks on the animal cages. I fear he may succeed one day.

 

He likes to dress himself now. On a recent 80 degree day he chose: wool sweater and hat. Nothing else was allowed near his body.

 

LPK also discovered cabinets. In about a minute flat he also found the peanut butter and tried to stuff a good half-cup in his mouth

 

We have smiles!!!! I’m melting….

 

 

 

The First Four Years

May 23, 2012

As of today at approximately 6pm, HH and I completed those First Four Years.

Wow.

Four years:

One loss.

Two kids.

Three state moves.

Four jobs.

Three dogs

Two little boys

One shared life

And countless dreams come true.

(yes, I mentioned the children twice… you would, too, if you had such freaking amazing little dudes).

I suppose we are now moving into the happy golden years :).  And yes, I realize I need to do something about the title of my blog.

Baptism Take Two

May 21, 2012

My second child was baptized yesterday at 9 weeks of age.

When LPK was baptized it was a moving and emotional affair.  I was definitely teary-eyed for most of the day.  This time?  I almost missed the actual baptizing because that same son was making a break for freedom (thank goodness Roo’s godmother snagged him or my only tears would have been those of toddler frustration).

Also, Roo screamed for pretty much the entire ceremony.  When we stood up at the front of church we had one screeching baby and a toddler trying to attack the altar.  Three other little boys were also getting baptized.  They were angels.  As was our godparent’s 9 month old teething boy.  All absolute beautiful golden haired angels.  And we were right smack in the middle with great frozen smiles while the priest kept having to speak louder and louder.  :/

Of course, once the ceremony was over Roo was completely happy.  Maybe it was some of those baptismal graces taking effect :).

All in all, it was a great weekend.  The godparents came down from NH, which was so sweet of them– we know how it is traveling with an infant.  We managed to make it to the zoo on saturday and have some good meals and good conversations (yay another woman who loves to talk about cloth diapering)!  HH’s grandparents also made it and brought soup, bagels, and cookies.  They also managed to figure out our camera and take pictures for us, which is priceless.

And now both of my boys have red-headed godfathers.  I think that’s hilarious.

Things To Remember

May 16, 2012

LPK:

–His current favorite phrase “oh man!”

–How he says sleep as “fweep.”

–His best nighttime procrastination technique: yelling out “Mommy, I miss you!”

–His favorite way to end sentences: the word “everywhere.”  As in: “There is poop everywhere.” “I broke it everywhere.”  “I miss you everywhere.”

–He says “mah” instead of “my” giving himself a sort of southern accent

— Most recent doctor visit he kept saying: “please doctor, listen to mah heart!”

— How he loves to help set the table by giving everyone 5-10 utensils.

–The face he makes when he is trying to be brave.  It’s an awkward little smile while his eyes fill with tears.  And he can be so brave.

— How he loves to take care of Roo.  LPK with just shower the little one with kisses and begs to hold him.  When Roo cries he will run over and say “It’s ok! I’m here, I’m here!”

Roo:

–Only Daddy can make him laugh, but I’ve gotten a couple good morning smiles

–He has rolled from front to back twice

–He can be so alert and serious as well as the most beautiful sleeper.

–If I leave him crying for a bit and then go and pick him up he is not grateful, at all.  Instead he just glares at me and holds a grudge.

–Right now he is lying on his playmat and hitting at his toys.  Not sure if he is doing it on purpose, but he is finding it amusing.

–For the past two nights he has slept between 6-8 hours straight.  While the sleep-deprived me is overjoyed, Mama me is a little worried that he isn’t waking himself up to eat.

Contentment

May 2, 2012

After LPK was born my version of the baby blues was wanting to go back to being pregnant.  I missed being pregnant so much and I was afraid it would be something I never got to experience again.  Plus, I now knew the whole story and it wasn’t as scary as it seemed starting out.  I cried when I put away my maternity clothes and when his umbilical stump fell off.

I really did my best to enjoy my pregnancy with Roo, but I was still surprised to realize that I’m not the least bit sad about no longer having him inside me.  I loved it, I truly did, but it is now just a sweet, cherished memory.

I have a couple theories about why this is:

1. Being pregnant with a toddler to chase after was not easy.  Especially at the end where he really wanted to be held all the time and I couldn’t lift him at all– nor was bending down/over to hug and cuddle that easy an endeavor.  Now I can love on both my boys 🙂

2. I had severe anxiety through out this pregnancy.  We had numerous scares and, quite frankly, I was pessimistic about it ending well.

3. Natural birth.  I am in no way militant about giving birth without drugs.  Every woman is different and has her own priorities and her own pain thresh holds, and that is just fine.  For me, however, going through the pains of childbirth, telling myself after every contraction “that’s one I’ll never have to live through again” was a way of wrapping up my pregnancy.   Unlike LPK’s birth (which I also loved) there was nothing passive about it.  No lying around, no numb extremeties, no doctor telling me when and how to push out my child.  No surprise of “wow, I’m done?”  It was, instead, a very conclusive experience.

Yes, I loved the kicks and the closeness that existed between me and my child for most of the past year, but I’m very happy to have my living healthy baby in my arms.  Of course I’m still very post-partum right now, so watch all my emotions swing the other way in a few weeks.

I was actually sitting at a very long red light last week.  I had just finished a long morning of errands with the kids and, predictably, they had reached their breaking point and were screaming in the back.  There I was, behind the wheel, with the biggest smile on my face as I realized that this was my dream come true and I couldn’t be happier.

Six Week Fashion Show!!

April 30, 2012

The Model– isn’t he a doll?

We are at three weeks of exclusive cloth-diapering with little Roo and I thought I’d just share our diaper stash and some basic reviews.  I loved reading about other parent CD experiences when I was researching diapers, so maybe someone will stumble upon this and find it helpful.

I put a lot of thought into every diaper purchase and read so many articles and reviews.  In the end, I prioritized what I wanted in a diaper: trimness and ease of use.  I could have been more cost conscious, but I’m hoping, God-willing. that these diapers will see at least a couple more babies before their time is up.

I bought all my diapers (or was gifted them).  I am not being comped for any reviews and I as not asked to write any reviews.  I know lots of “mom blogs” get sent freebies to review and I’ve never been able to read one of those reviews without the feeling of bias.

First up:

Best Bottoms one-size diaper.

Best Bottom- Giraffe Print

These are an All-in-Two system– cover and inserts sold separately.  The inserts come in three sizes (one for each rise setting) and snap in place.  They get great reviews generally and I really wanted to love them.

Pros:

Cover is fabulous.  It fits newborns really well and adjust down to the point where you can overlap flaps for those skinny babies.
Trim fit.  Fits between and around legs well.
I think the colors/prints are adorable.  Bright contrasting colors? Yes, please.
Inserts are thick and soft, come with the option of buying doublers that snap together for overnights.
Only one leak incident (I’ve used everyday) and that was due to user error (remember to point the boy stuff down!!!).
Can use regular prefolds instead of inserts.

Cons:

Insert in great for pee, but horrible for poo.  It gets all over the cover.  (Although, please note, it hasn’t wicked out onto any of his clothes).
Unsnapping the insert with poo on it is… not the most fun.
Inserts take longer than any of my others to dry.
Back snap sits right on baby’s tail bone.  He doesn’t seem to mind, but I don’t know how comfortable it can be (Princess and Pea scenario?? haha).
Inserts feel pricey at 4 dollars a piece.  More for overnights/hemp.  I’d think it was more worth it if they truly contained that breastfed poop so that you are guaranteed multiple cover uses between washes.

Conclusion:

I have a couple “small inserts”.  I’m not sure if I will buy the medium in a few months, or the overnights (although I’m tempted).  The cover is great, however, so it will definitely be staying in rotation with prefolds at least.

Next:

Flip stay-dry system

Flip Diapers– snaps!

Another All-in-Two, this one is very economical price wise and has some devoted fans.  I have two flip covers, one with snaps and one with aplix, and three inserts (stay-dry).

Pros:

Cheap.  Especially since cottonbabies.com etc run BOGO sales all the time.
No leaks so far and I’ve been using these as our nighttime diaper.
Inserts are one size and you fold accordingly– yet they are still pretty trim.
Inserts are wide, which is why I like them for nighttime, and easy to double (though it makes them much less trim).  It’s not an ideal nighttime system, though.  Still working on that.
Velcro closure can make a nice small fit for tiny baby.
I’ve tried them on my 30+ pounder and they still fit (on largest setting…barely…but he has chunky thighs).

Cons:

Snaps are harder to fasten/unfasten than other brands.  They are loud, too, which startles baby (and me) at night.
Wide crotch area– I dislike it purely for aesthetic reasons.
You can’t machine dry covers.  I plan on mostly line drying anyway, but these still get thrown in the general wet bag and fishing them out after washing is annoying.  I like all my laundry done the same!

Conclusion:

I’m buying the Flip trainers for our not-nightime-potty-trained toddler…so I like the brand.  I’m also keeping my eyes out for good Flip sales.  They are definitely a good diaper to have in the stash and the cover can work over prefolds as well.

Next:

Prefolds with Bummis Small and Thirsties Duo Wrap Size 1 Covers (Click on picture to get better view)

Prefolds are your regular old-fashioned type of cloth diapering.  This is what I did with LPK for his first three months (until daycare) and it was…fine.  I can’t really get excited about them. I have those Bummis covers as well as one Thirsty Duo Wrap, which I was actually curious to try– I’ve heard great things about them!!

Pros:

Very inexpensive.  I got the Bummis infant set with LPK.  $160 for 24 prefolds and six covers (plus an assortment of diapering suppliesincluding wet bag)– an easy two days of diapers.
You an get fancy or stay simple.  Lots of different folds, covers, etc etc.  Make it what you want!!
Easy to wash and easy to dry.  I’ve never had a problem with smell or build-up.
Bummis covers: Easy.  But only aplix, no snaps.  Come in several sizes.
Thirsty cover: Snaps (yay!!).  Two sizes with multiple adjustments for a trimmer fit.  Lots of colors!!

Cons:
Bulky.  This is what I hate about them.  There are ways to fold that are less bulky, but still, bulky.
Need extra fleece liners.  Roo hates the instant feeling of wetness that he gets with his Indian Cotton prefolds.  I have to use fleece liners to wick the moisture away.  This means each diaper change has four pieces…ugh.
Thirsties: I am using size 1 and already on the biggest rise setting.  Not sure if that it because I suck at folding the diapers or beacuse my guy has nice chunky legs, but I don’t think I’ll get the 3/4 months use I was hoping for out of this cover.
Bummis: Leaks.  Not everytime and I’ve never had a poop blowout like with disposables, but still… a leak means a complete outfit change.

Conclusion:
I don’t regret getting these, but they are for at home only.  Great for when I’m behind on laundry and it’s way cool to see HH throw one of these on like a pro :).  Some people really love them, so I may be doing something wrong here… tips and hints are always appreciated.

Last, but not least:

Fuzzibunz!! (One size Elite and Perfect size)

Fuzzibunz Perfect Size

Perfect Size is a sized pocket diaper.  I bought a couple because I heard they were super trim and, with most babies, you’d only ever need two sizes, although they make four.  Roo is wearing a size Small in above picture.

Pros:

Trimmest diaper I have.
Lots of bright colors (fuzzibunz in general)
Easy to stuff
Stay dry microfleece really works (fuzzibunz in general)
Size is marked on front of diaper making it easy to grab the right one

Cons:

Expensive and sized so you have to buy multiple times over.

Conclusion:

Lots of people think having to stuff a pocket diaper is a con, but I rather enjoy it.  It’s relaxing to take my nice clean diapers and prep them for use.  I love the perfect size, and, in an ideal world, they would be my favorite, but I’m not a fan of having multiple size diapers floating around…especially when they cost almost as much as the one size.

Which brings us to:

Fuzzibunz Elite One Size

My diaper of choice.  A pocket, just like the Perfect size, but the legs and waist are adjustable to fit babies for their entire diaper wearing careers.

Pros:

Trim
Pretty colors
Incredibly easy to use
Fit so perfectly– between the elastic and snaps for leg and waist size, I’m sure it could fit any baby.
The snaps are amazing: simple, but sturdy. (fuzzibunz in general)
Quality overall seems really really good, plus the PUL is covered with a lifetime guarantee (and the snaps, I think?).
Clean easily– minky inserts seem to absorb well and the microfleece inside means that the baby never feels more than slighty damp.

Cons:

A little “poofy” on the back, so not as trim as perfect size, but they will be ever trimmer as he gets bigger.
Expensive– $20 per diaper (but that’s about the same as most pocket diapers)
Not as easy to stuff as the perfect size due to narrower crotch (I doubt HH could fit his hand inside to stuff).

Conclusion:
I love these diapers so much.  They are my go-to diaper and a breeze to carry with me out and about.  Roo’s clothes fit perfectly over them; which was something I wanted in a cloth diaper.

Anyway, that is my spiel.  I love cloth diapering.  Diaper changes are incredibly pleasant these days and I can coordinate diaper colors to match his outfits, or let him go with just a shirt and diaper and he still looks dressed!!

My own big problem is that I haven’t found an overnight solution that I like.  I really want to try a bububebe fitted diaper, but at the going price of about $30 plus shipping, I don’t really have the budget for it right now.  So, in the meantime, I am making my own fitted overnight diapers.  I have no clue if they are worth it, but it’s pretty cheap and nighttime diaps dont have to be trim or pretty.

Stay tuned for that post.  The going is slow because Roo is colic-y and LPK can’t be trusted around machines.

A Week In the Life of LPK

April 13, 2012

My charming little man

 

MONDAY:

I forgot how this happened with Spike, too, but in the first few postpartum weeks, my migraines, which completely disappear during pregnancy, make up for all lost time.  I was fairly incapacitated, struggling to get by in a darkened room nursing Benjaroo off and on and trying to believe that LPK’s silence was a good thing.

Not.

He found my makeup (again) and got into my mascara (again).  The last time he did this he pretty much just blackened his entire face.  He has learned technique since then and we ended up with a more KISS-esque application.

He moved on from that to the Art of Drum Making.  Necessary supplies: everything metal and loud.  It had me writhing in pain, but at least he wasn’t damaging himself or anything else.

TUESDAY:

I was feeling great so we set out on some errands.  Reached our first stop before the store was opened.  I only realized this when the front doors wouldn’t open.  We trooped back to the car and I let LPK in.  Roo set up wailing so I put his seat back in and tried soothing him since it appeared we would be sitting cooped up for half an hour.  A horrible sound distracted my attention to the front seat.  Spike had climbed into the passenger seat, since I hadn’t actually strapped him in his seat yet, and was busy pressing the 6-cd-changer eject button in an effort to retrieve the coins he had pushed inside.  Guess what?  Nothing wanted to come out and a hideous noise was emanating from the system.

Did I mention this is a two-month-old car?  (Well, it’s used…but we’ve only had it for two-months…I told HH he should have let me drive the old car…).  We haven’t yet been able to retrieve the coin(s).  At least one cd slot is useable, though, so that’s something.

Also, the time between putting LPK in the car and him sticking coins in slots couldn’t have been more than twenty seconds.  I think I know the first rule of toddlers:  NEVER LET THEM OUT OF YOUR SIGHT!

WEDNESDAY:

We spent it at home.  It was a potty training day so LPK was running around without …well anything on.  After months of constipation and hard poo, his body finally decided to switch things up and he had diarrhea.

I learn about it from a little voice whispering from around the bedroom corner… “Mommy, I made mess.”

Still less gross than cleaning up after a puppy, at least.

Today is also the day he learns that the stair gate has a secret flaw: he can, with some unnatural contortions, squeeze under it.  There are officially no baby-free areas left in the house.

THURSDAY:

Benjaroo has been having screaming fits and is only calmed by being held.  I generally just put him in my wrap so I can get things done.  Turns out, I left the wrap in the car.  I run downstairs and grab it.  I come back and Roo is screaming even louder, if that’s possible.  LPK is standing on mis stool and going through a kitchen drawer (that’s a no-no).  That particular drawer is benign, however, and Roo really needs me, so I hurry and attempt to don my wrap when I hear a large crash.

LPK has fallen off his stool, and from the looks of the blood pooling around his face, he hit the drawer on the way down.  Baby is now second priority and I run over to my crying two-year-old.  I assume he’s bitten his lip and give him a cool damp cloth.  I clean off the lips, but there is no cut.  Still blood, but I see it’s coming from the mouth. I’m hoping it’s no a tooth knocked out– poor kid hasn’t even had his first dental visit yet.  Nope, teeth look fine.

“Aw, it’s ok,” I console Spike.  “You probably just bit your tongue.”  And he had.  But it was no little nibble… it was a gash and it was maybe a millimeter short of cutting entirely through his tongue.  Everytime he moved his tongue the wound would gape open and blood would fill his mouth.  So freaking creepy.

Five minutes later he was calm and I was finally able to attend to my other wailing child.  I sat down to nurse and heard another crash.

Spike had fallen off the stool again.

I sent him to take the stool and put it away in his room.  I found him a few minutes later in the bathroom.  On the stool.  Sticking out his tongue in the mirror and examining the bloody grand canyon.

*We didn’t go to the doctor for the tongue.  From what I’ve read, it’s something that will heal on it’s own.  Doctors will only suture if it’s bitten clean through.  He’s on a crumb free diet for the next 48 hours to promote clean healing.  (If any pediatric nurses *cough* Adri *cough* have experience with this, feel free to chime in.  Also, I bought him popsicles, but apparently they are “too cold” and are best used as a makeshift spoon for applesauce.  

FRIDAY:

That would be today.  I’m sure it will be exciting.