Sunday, July 31, 2011

Cloth Wipes!

I couldn't wait 'til Sunday to start this. Plus, my husband was working through the night (and saving lives!) and won't be home until this evening so I had time on my hands.

In my estimation, we go through about 100 wipes per week (we also use them for cleanup), and I swear she poops ten times a day. I prefer the name brand wipes because they are thicker. So we spend roughly $20 per month on wipes. That's $240 a year.

Today, I spent the following:
$8 for 2 yds of flannel (I looked for clearance flannel but they didn't have any)
$1.50 on baby wash
$3 on baby oil

$12.50 total

Obviously the baby wash and baby oil will need replenished, so I estimate these wipes pay themselves off in about a month. Considering my diapers have saved me about $300 already, I'm doing pretty well!

So here's what I did


I cut up my flannel into wipe-size pieces. It made roughly 70 wipes.



In a large water bottle, I put 2 cups hot water, 1/2 cup baby oil, and 1/2 cup baby wash.

I poured enough of the solution over the wipes to moisten them, and then added hot water so that the container was about half full. (The solution is very soapy, so I diluted it).






I have a plastic trash can with a trash bag in it for storing dirties. I put a small amount of powdered detergent in the bottom of the trash bag to keep the stink away. When I go to wash, I can just dump all of the bag's contents in the washer, add a bit more detergent and we're done!





I've done two (bad) diaper changes today. Generally her "difficult" changes require 3 or 4 wipes. These changes took only 1 or 2 because of the durability. So far I'm happy. We'll see how I feel when the laundry increase :)

Saturday, July 30, 2011

I Know I Am On The Right Path...

Oh so slowly :)


I've had a sleep transition plan in mind the entire time we've been bedsharing. The first step was to sidecar the crib. Next, transition her to sleeping in the sidecar. When that is good and established, put the crib into the daybed position and then move it away from our bed, but keep it in our room. Finally, when she is sleeping by herself, move her bed into her own room.

Now, I had no illusions about this process. I knew it would take a while. I am fortunate to have this kind of flexibility with her, and I know that is because I'm a Stay At Home Mom, and she is my only child. The next children's transitions will likely be more difficult. I also know that this transition with Charlotte will take until she's 2 years old (or older).

Something I have been intent on, with sleep and other things, is making transitions when she is ready. I don't subscribe to the idea that kids "need" to be pushed to do XYZ at certain times because it's "good for them." I don't want to push her to independence. Frankly, I think independence is overvalued in this country, particularly with babies and children. A child isn't meant to be independent at a young age. It develops over time. Adults generally prefer to be with other people, have companionship, support, closeness. I like sleeping next to someone. I don't like being lonely. And I'm 30! A baby certainly doesn't need to be expected to accept being alone. There is a reason babies and small children sleep better with their mommies. It's where they want to be, it's where they are comfortable, it's where they are meant to be.

Don't get me wrong. I know there are babies out there who don't necessarily like to sleep next to their mothers as they grow. They prefer more space, like to be able to move around. And cosleeping does NOT solve all sleep problems, believe me, I know. There were times when Charlotte would be snuggled right next to me and still wake frequently, crying--even screaming. Those were the times when something else was up. Teeth, getting sick, bad dreams, etc. But I think that being closer to me while going through these issues did make them easier on her. I hope that she felt some comfort anyway.

I am aware that bedsharing can cause some undesired habits if you're not careful. I DO know that a child needs to eventually be able to sleep in their own bed. I believe that they need that independence at some point. It has always been important to me to move in that direction...at Charlotte's pace, not mine.

I understand there are moms out there who need their children to sleep by themselves and learn to sleep for long periods. Multiple children, work. Sometimes it just has to be that way for the sake of sanity. Personally, I got 1000% more sleep when I started cosleeping, which made working much easier. But that's what MY child wanted. I'm not against sleep training. I just knew that I wouldn't be able to do it before a certain age. And I will do some if I need to later. Sleep is important and necessary for their development. If there comes a time when she is not sleeping well, and it effects her general mood and health, I will "train" to some degree. I will not have her cry it out. Chilren cry for a reason. And every child is different. No sleep training expert will ever convince me that they have a solution for my daughter's crying because they don't know her. How on earth could they give me a blanketed solution? If I am careful and observant, I will figure out what she needs so I can give that to her. And yes, I know that toddlers constantly test boundaries, and that may be the cause of some sleep issues in the future. I am prepared to set and enforce those boundaries if that is, indeed, what is happening. And I am fully aware that that can be a nightmare.

I cosleep because that is what my little peanut wanted. And I want her to trust me. To know I will give her what she needs. To grow up knowing that I will comfort her when she is upset.

I transition as she is ready because I want sleep to be pleasant for her. Because I understand she needs what she needs, and she is who she is. Because I know she is not manipulating me. Because sometimes she will want to sleep closer to me than other times. And because I know some nights, even as she grows, she will want to find comfort next to me in the night, and she is welcome there.

Day 130...

I looooove ruffle butts!

Day 129...

Friday, July 29, 2011

Granola...er Mom Challenge

I consider myself to be a Moderate Granola. Semi-Crunchy. Light-Green. It all started with cloth diapers. Yes! I looove cloth diapers! And not just because they are freakin' adorable either. I save tons of money. I save landfills lots of loot. And I keep some questionable chemicals off my sweet pea's hiney most of the time. I do, however, use disposables on occasion so believe me, I don't judge :) BTW, hoity toity CDers GGGGRRRRAAAATTTEEE on my nerves. Seriously, chill out.

I bedshare, as is no secret.

I hope to nurse the little until she's two (which gets me some funny looks). Although, she will likely wean before then. She nurses about 4 times a day now, and not really at night anymore.

I babywear. And I talk about babywearing. To the point that I'm sure I'm obnoxious. I own three ring slings, two structured carriers, and a mei tai. And I use every.single.one. My stroller is dusty.

I buy organic produce when I can (it's not always available where I shop). I'm going to go broke buying organic milk. Holy organic COW it's expensive. But, totally worth it to me. I even researched local dairy farms in my state to see if they are nice to their cows.

Anyhow, I posted once about creeping up on hippiedom, but have found myself stagnating. I take pride in the things I just listed. I feel like I'm doing right by my daughter and the Earth. I want Charlotte to have an example of being a good steward of God's creation. My stagnation has gotten to me in the last couple of days. I feel like I should/could do more. It's easy, really. So I'm challenging myself to start some of the more green projects/lifestyle changes I have wanted to. I will start one per week and I'll update about my progress.

I thought CDing was going to be a big ol' project that I'd get tired of, but I haven't. It's now a normal part of my life. I want these other things to become part of my everyday life as well. Easy. Do them because that's what I do, ya know?

So, the things I'd like to start with are:
    * Start using cloth wipes
    * Recycle for crap's sake (really? why have I not recycled yet???)
    * Replace all of my cleaning supplies with natural ingredients

Today is Friday. Sunday, I'll start the Great Cloth Wipes movement in my household. I really don't think my husband's going to be up for this. He has enough trouble with poop as it is.


   

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Oops!

Dang! I just realized I posted the same pic twice in two separate posts. I blame mommy brain. Not my fault ;)

Friday, July 22, 2011

AHEM! I Have a Very Important Announcement to make...

Brace yourselves...Charlotte...is...SLEEPING THROUGH THE NIGHT. Officially. I didn't want to jinx it, but it's been a solid few weeks. I realize that everything in babyhood and toddlerhood (and probably childhood altogether) is a phase, but seriously folks. This is big. Would you like to hear the story of my crap napper?

It all started the day she was born. She slept like a champ, as ALL newborns do. Seriously, that's what they do. But I thought I hit it big. I was like, "Wow! I have such a great sleeper! How lucky am I?!" Guess what...WRONG. By two months old, she was sleeping 6 hour stretches. That, my friends, was a beautiful thing. And then 3 months rolled around. Buh-bye beauty sleep! Hello crazy baby. I swear I lost count of the number of nights that she woke every hour AT MOST. By five months, 45 minutes was a sweet sweet gift. She would sleep on me just fine, and for long periods of time, so we started cosleeping. Seriously, that was the best freakin' decision of my life. I wish I had done it at 3 months. She wanted it, she needed it. I should have given it to her sooner.

So for a while it was gggggrrrraaaannnnddd! Then BAM! Guess who gets sick. Fever, screaming, the emergency room, the works. So that went on for about 5 days and she got better. We got back on track. Knock knock! Who's there? TEETH! Yes! That was awesome. We got through that, too. Remember? Everything's a phase.

Oh, wait! What month is it? January? Ah yes, time to get sick again. But Doc, why won't you give her antibiotics? It's been a week. Oh, it'll go away on its own, you say? Ok. But Doc, it's been THREE weeks now! Give her something for reelz.

Ok, now it's February. Hello more teeth! Yaaaay! Oh, it's also time for more solid food! Hooray! Such an exciting thing to watch your baby try new flavors! Not so exciting to find out what gives them gas and diarrhea. More sleep crap. But I learned, and we got through that, too.

March was pretty rockin' as I recall. April, though, brought visits to see family, unfamiliar places, and seriously f'ed up schedules. Ok, at this point I'm ready to eat my coffee grounds straight. May wasn't so bad. June was more road trippin' and screwy schedules and new people and new places. And guess what...It's July! Skippidy DOOOO! Sweet, sweet sleep. I'm drooling right now. Over sleep.

She still sleeps in bed with me, and I absolutely adore it. Wouldn't change it, and will do it with my subsequent children. When she's a teenager she'll probably give me the finger, so I'm enjoying every possible snuggle I can soak up. And thus ends the story of my crap sleeper. God makes them cute for a very good reason. It kept me from stabbing myself in the eyeballs about a thousand times.

Goodnight!

Days 113-123

Little sweetie :o)

And this is what taking a family picture looks like.



This is clearly a "babywearers" child. She seriously hates the stroller. 
Real men wear their babies!


 At the Butterfly Garden

You gotta do what you gotta do!

Feeding the giraffes at the zoo.

My birthday girl!

She loves the water!


 Home again and getting cozy. Yes, that is a disposable diaper...I know. I know. All the cloth was in the wash.
Baby girl at the park.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Days 102-112

She's still not sure about grass...

 ...but she IS sure about apples!

 And she loooves her grandma :)

 but does not love the stroller.

 Snoozing on the battlefield tour in Gettysburg.

 more snoozing on the family vacay.

 In some shade.
On our Candlelight Ghost Tour!


 Her souvenir bear from Chocolate World.

 A moment I don't want to forget.

 And who else can say they sat on a Civil War cannon?