Thursday, August 31, 2006

Just Pickin'

Here's some irony for you.

I have a weak stomach, always have, especially when it comes me just say...noses. I have, at least twice, thrown up at the mention of someone picking her nose. I have to look away when someone sneezes, and I can barely contain my gags when someone blows his nose around me. John handles the baby-nose-sucking duties in our family because it's just too much for me.

So, of course, wouldn't you know it, my daughter is a nose-picker! Ugh, that finger is constantly up her nose. I remove her finger, and she puts it back. I don't want to focus on it too much lest the whole finger/nose thing become a game for her, so I deal with it. Kleenex in hand, I wipe her finger with a serious face. And I remind myself that she is part of me, her boogers are my boogers. Now that's love.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

How to Cloth Diaper

I've written this post in various incarnations several times for friends and family members who have shown interest in cloth diapering. I'm posting it here to satisfy the curiosity of those who are curious and to save myself from rewriting or cutting and pasting in the future. I'll just send the asker to this post.

Why Cloth?
-Better for baby -- minimum chemicals next to baby's delicate parts
-Better for environment -- less waste
-Better for finances -- even with a well-stocked cute stash (like mine) you'll break even well before a year of use (and you could use your diapers for more than one child. Diapers also maintain their value well for resell -- between 50-90 percent of their original value.)

It's not what you're thinking (necessarily)
There are many different types of cloth diapering today. You can still use a pinned diaper with a cover, and many do as it is the most economical option. Rather than pins, though, diapers can be secured with a Snappi, a plastic clip to hold the diaper in place. When I use prefolds, I just fold them into a well-fitting cover.

I started cding using pocket diapers. These diapers go on like a disposable, either with aplix (like velcro) closures or snaps. The outside is make of polyurethane laminate (PUL), a waterproof fabric. There is an open pocket inside to slide something absorbent -- a microfiber towel, a prefold diaper, or an insert sold with the diaper outer. Up against the baby is a layer of microfleece. The keeps the baby from feeling wet. Pockets are the mainstay of my diaper stash. I use them for overnight and naps.

All-in-One (AIO) diapers are the easiest option since no stuffing is involved. Many work-at-home-moms sew and sell AIOs or All-in-Twos (AI2). AI2s have snap-in soakers allowing you to control the absorbency and thickness of the diaper.

Fitted diapers are not waterproofed, but fasten onto the baby using snaps or aplix. These diapers need a waterproof cover. I use these sometimes, especially when Caroline has a diaper rash as they breathe well.

Covers--prefolds and fitted diapers need covers. Covers can be made of PUL, wool, or other water repellent materials.

My Diapering System
Overnight I use Fuzzi Bunz pocket diapers, stuffed with two microfiber inserts or a Fuzzi Fannies fitted diaper with a doubler and a wool cover by Loveybums
Pocket Diapers:
Fuzzi Bunz (10)
Preston's Pants (1)
Daisy Doodles (3) each with an extra snap-in soaker
Poppy Pants (2)
Jamtots Berry Plush AIO (1) w/extra insert
Fitteds and prefolds:
Happy Heiny fitteds (2)
Muttaqin fitted (1)
Fuzzi Fannies fitteds (2) I bought these on ebay. Fuzzi Fannies no longer makes fitteds.
a dozen infant chinese prefolds
Bummis Super Snap (1)
Bumkins cover (1)
Loveybums wool wrap
Pretty Baby Designs wool soaker
Sweet Pea Soaker longies
Baa Baby Naturals soaker

My Laundry System
I now have enough diapers to wash only twice a week, on Sundays and Thursdays. I use a Rubbermaid trashcan with a step-on lid that seals tightly and throw my diapers directly into the pail. For thick or solid poop, I plop it into the toilet and use a diaper sprayer to rinse the diaper, then throw the rinsed diaper into the pail. I empty the pail liner filled with diapers into the washing machine and throw in the pail liner. I run a cold auto-soak/prerinse on the diapers, then wash them on the longest cycle on hot with about a tablespoon of Sun detergent (you do not need much soap. Too much soap can cause problems with your diapers!) I run an extra rinse and then put my diapers into the dryer. If a diaper is stained, I hang the clean, wet diaper in the sun to dry. The sun is amazing on stains. After sunning, I fluff the diaper in the dryer for a few minutes. I do run an empty hot wash with bleach through my washing machine every week or so to clean out the machine.

Accessories I Recommend

--cloth wipes -- even if you aren't cloth diapering, cloth wipes are soooo much better than thin disposable, chemical filled wipes. I just use water on the wipes for Caroline.(Emibeans has a great selection. I bought the grab bag.)
--diaper shower/sprayer (I bought mine on ebay)
--pail liner (I like the Mother of Eden pail liner sold at Emibeans)

Vendors and Resellers I Recommend
Emibeans (check diaperpin sales / announcements for discount codes!)
Daisy Doodles
Fuzzi Bunz
Middle Earth Diapers (exclusive vendor of Preston's Pants)

Resources / More Information
Diaper Pin
Diaper Swappers

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Momma loves a bargain!

I'm lucky that my baby enjoys shopping with me (or maybe I've just effectively trained her from early on.) We hit the streets a few afternoons a week looking for bargains. We like resell shops like Kid to Kid and Once Upon a Child, bargain spots like the Goodwill Blue Hangar outlet, and online spots like Craigslist. Today, I discovered Tuesday Morning.

Some of my recent bargains:
Zutano baby basics dress for $1.25 at a garage sale (these retail for $22) This is one of my favorite brands for babies!

a brand new Carriage Boutiques smocked bishop dress for $9 at Tuesday Morning (retails for $46)

a wooden ride-on toy for $10 at Once Upon a Child that was selling next door at Tuesday Morning for $30 with a retail list price of $60.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Where do you blog?


I blog in my "nursing chair!" Notice the boppy pillow in my lap. My blogging time begins as I nurse Caroline down for her nap -- I check in on some friends' blogs then. After I put her in her bed, I do a bit of my own writing. This is also my bed-time blogging routine.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Mommy Showers (or baths)

I don't remember reading about methods for mommy showers when I was pregnant or starting out with a newborn, but I did pretty quickly figure out that night-time showers were the way to go. I'd get Caroline down for the night and then sneak off to have my shower. That worked well until Caroline hit a light-sleeping stage, and since the master bathroom shares a wall with her bedroom, the wall her crib is against, I often woke her while taking my shower.

Our newest routine is working really well, and I'm very happy with it. After dinner, I head off for my shower or bath, and John gives Caroline her bath. I enjoy the time to take care of personal hygiene beyond a quick shower...You know, shaved legs, plucked eyebrows, and even a microdermasioned face every now and then...And John and Caroline get some bonding time. I also enjoy it because now the time between baby bedtime and adult bedtime is not spent showering and such. John and I can watch a movie or visit together, or I can read or play on the internet a bit.

Now, there are days when I don't get that evening bath or shower, or, for whatever reason, I decide to clean up during the morning. Those are the days to forego the shower and take a bath. Yes, I can take a bath even without John home to tend to the toddler! Caroline hangs out beside the tub "bathing" me! So now I have no excuse to run around town stinky!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

New Name -- New Look -- More Content...soon

We have a new name -- So Many Joys -- inspired by the joys and Joyces in my life (see sidebar for further explanation.) We have a new look, thanks to my talented friend Erica Wagner. And I plan to introduce more content, meaning more posts from me, to keep my inner-writer in practice.

The links on Caroline's blog have been updated, and I may join a few blogrolls now that I plan to update more often. Keep your eyes out for John's new blog, too, He liked the name because *math is fun* and there was some remedial math class in high school called Fundamentals of Math that his teacher jokingly referred to as "fun of math." (Really, Caroline, your parents are cool!)

Friday, August 25, 2006

Go Shopping!

I've created a store on featuring some of my favorite products for babies. I'm working on adding my favorite books and Caroline's favorite toys, too. Take a look!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

It's World Breastfeeding Week

August 1-7 is World Breastfeeding Week. Go out and nurse your baby. Tell a pregnant friend about the benefits of breastfeeding. Help a new momma over the trials of the first few weeks of nursing a new baby.

Check out the gallery of pictures on Celebrity Baby Blog. (See anyone your recognize? Hint, hint!)