Cloth Diapering Myths – Week 2

Last week I started a series on cloth diapering. If you are interested in cloth diapering I would highly suggest you read the first post before proceeding with this post. If you are not interested in cloth diapering I would highly suggest you read something else. Like this post where my daughter decided she wanted a pet bee.

Ready for myth 2? Okay here we go.

Myth #2: I need the perfect cloth diaper

A lot of people who start looking in to cloth diapering get confused by the different kinds of diapers. There seem to be 1,000 different kinds and they don’t really understand the differences. They get stressed by all these choices and the thought that they may spend money and buy “the wrong one” stops them from buying any at all.

I don’t think you need the perfect diaper, I think you just need to understand the different diapers.

Here is a chart I made with the 6 main kinds of diapers: All In Ones (AIOs), All In Twos (AI2s), Fitteds, Pockets, Prefolds, and Flats.

types of diapersIf you’re thinking they look alike, that is because they all do. They are all diapers.

I will note, because you can’t tell from a picture, if you open up a prefold it ‘s around 12×12 inches and is fairly thick. If you open up a flat it is much bigger and very thin. You fold the flat down to diaper size, the prefold is already about diaper size.

There are two main components to cloth diapers: The part that absorbs your child’s bodily functions and the waterproof part that keeps your child’s bodily functions from soaking their clothes.

Some diapers have these two things combined and some diapers have these two things separate. Here is a chart I made to help you understand the differences between the 6. Go ahead and click here if you need to see a bigger picture.

types of diapers info chartWhen people initially look in to cloth diapering many of them go straight for the All In One’s because they seem so simple. They can’t imagine using a prefold and having to fold it. All In One’s certainly have a great place in the cloth world, but I assure you that it probably took you longer to read how to put on a prefold diaper than it would take you to actually put one on your baby (once you’ve done it a handful of times).

Many people end up using a mix of the different diapers. Our goal was ease of use and ease of wash. Personally, we ended up going with pocket diapers for daycare, fitteds for nighttime use, and prefolds for home daytime use. This is what worked for us, but it might not work for you. All diapers all have their pros and cons. You just need to understand them so you can figure out what works for you.

 

Nariya’s first beer

Nariya asked me this morning if I remembered that time I let her have her first beer. How could I forget?

We aren’t big soda drinkers in this house. Or pop drinkers as you silly midwesterners might say. The kids can have the occasional soda as a special treat if that is what is being served, and if I’m nowhere nearby to give a lecture on sugar and caffeine content. We never buy the stuff ourselves. There are two main reasons for this:

1) Soda isn’t exactly the healthiest beverage on the planet

2) I have no self control

Due to the lack of icy cold carbonated refreshments under our roof, our kids haven’t had much recent exposure which is probably what led to the following interaction. Rob was working on a Sunday and the kids and I decided to stop by to say hello. Rob and his coworkers were all gathered around the table finishing up lunch when we arrived.

Rob’s coworker: Do you guys want a root beer?

Will (confused, looking back and fourth from the guy to me): Nah….

Rob’s coworker: Really? There’s one left that nobody drank. You and your sister can share it.

Will (still confused): No. No. I’m good. I don’t need that stuff.

Rob’s coworker: Okaaaaay. Nariya do you want a root beer?

Nariya: Sure!

Nariya takes the beverage and quickly begins guzzling it down at lightening speed. Everyone at the table smiles while observing what could be the world record for fastest soda consumed. Suddenly it dawns on Nariya that she has perhaps forgotten her manners.

Nariya: Thank you for letting me have beer!

There’s a moment of complete dead silence as we all wonder if she said what we think she just said. She takes another sip as every person in the room stares at her.

Nariya: I really love beer!

Yep, she had said what we thought she said.

Me: Honey it’s a ROOT beer. That’s a kind of soda. There’s no alcohol. It not a beer, it is a soda.

Nariya (disappointed): Oh…

Will (disappointed): Oh…

Me: Will did you say no because you thought it was beer too?

Will: Yeah. It’s a trick name.

Apparently those ‘just say no” campaigns have been working on Will, not so much on Nariya. She’s still convinced she had a beer too. And has stated it proudly on several occasions since.

This morning:

Nariya: Remember that time you let me have my first beer?

Me: ROOT beer

Nariya: Can I have beer again sometime?

beer

 

DVDs: My sole purpose in life

We’ve been having a babysitter pick the kids up and drive them to camp in the morning. Camp doesn’t start until 9:00, and that isn’t enough time for me to get to work. It’s really nice, because she also drops me off at the train station on the way.

(In the car this morning)

Babysitter: So what do you do for work?

Me: I work at a post production company. We basically do all kinds of post.

Babysitter: Oh okay. Because I asked the kids yesterday. They said your job was to put things on DVD.

Will (yelling from the backseat): Yep! Anything you want on DVD, she can put it there!

Me: Well… we do other stuff too. Like closed captioning and editing.

Nariya (confused): I thought the only thing you knew how to do was make DVDs.

Will (surprised): You can edit too? Wow. I didn’t know that!

Glad my children were paying such close attention to me when I visited their classes on career day! That was clearly a personal day well spent.

dvds

Born In Your Heart GIVEAWAY!

I’m really excited to share the Born in Your Heart jewelry line with you today. My friend Tammy Palmer’s 5 year old daughter Gloria came up with the design. Gloria is the youngest of Tammy’s 3 daughters and was adopted from China last May. She was born with Amniotic Band syndrome which effected all of her limbs. Gloria drew this picture for her mom one day and said “Look mommy, I was born in your heart!”

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Tammy loved the drawing and knew it was the perfect design for a jewelry line. She is currently running a kickstarter to help raise the funds to make this dream a reality. It is really a very sweet story and I would love for you to check out the video. Tammy is also sponsoring a giveaway of your choice of any one of Gloria’s jewelry pieces. These are such beautiful pieces and would make a great gift for any momma or child.

3 pieces

There are three ways you can enter today:

1) Like the Born In Your Heart Facebook page

2) Check out the kickstarter page and consider making a donation. Many of the rewards if you do choose to make a donation are actual pieces of jewelry. So it’s a win-win.

3) Share this blog post on your own blog, twitter, facebook, or pinterest page.

The second and third options can be done daily, so please check back on this post often!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Cloth Diapering Myths – Week 1

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When people hear we are cloth diapering the responses pretty much run the gamut with everything from “Oh cool, us too!” to “EWWWWW that’s disgusting! You touch poop!”

It’s one of those topics that everyone seems to have something to say about. Which is odd because it doesn’t really seem like that interesting of a discussion piece. I mean, it’s a poop catcher. What’s there to talk about? But talk is what people want to do. Although there is a lot of positivity, there is also a lot of negativity surrounding cloth. In fact, if I had a nickel for every time someone tried to talk me out of cloth diapering I’m pretty sure I would have a whole dollar by now. Maybe even a buck and a half.

The negativity usually comes from some misconception about cloth (like touching poop). Because of this, I thought I would do a small series on some of the myths of cloth diapering. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

1) I’m not an expert. My kid just wears them. We haven’t tried a million brands, or sewn them by hand, or done absorbency tests, or anything like that. These are just my opinions based on my experiences.

2) I ain’t judgin’ you and your disposables. I like cloth. A lot. If you don’t, just scroll on past these posts. No biggie.

Without further ado,

Myth #1: Cloth diapering is really complicated

I decided to start with this myth because it seems to be the most common one I hear. It’s also the most broad. And I get it, because I thought cloth diapering was complicated at first too. Especially when you start reading a little about it and hear all these words you’ve never heard of in a context you don’t have much experience with.  I’ll further break down some of the specifics in the coming weeks. But for now let’s get into the big picture.

Cloth diapers do not have to be complicated. Using them is very similar to using disposables.

Step 1) You buy your diapers (similar experience for both disposables and cloth).

Step 2) You put them on your baby (similar experience for both disposables and cloth).

Step 3) Your baby poops in them (exact same experience for both disposables and cloth).

Step 4) You put them in a bag (similar experience for both disposables and cloth).

Step 5) Here’s where things get a little different: With disposables you will have used a disposable bag in step 4, and now you will take that bag out to the trash can. With cloth you will use a wet bag in step 4 and you will take that bag down to the laundry room. If you are using disposables you will now repeat this process starting at step 1. If you are using cloth you will now move on to step 6.

Step 6) You wash/dry your diapers. You now begin the process again, this time bypassing Step 1 and starting at Step 2.

Long story short: Disposables cycle steps 1-5. Cloth cycles steps 2-6. Simple right?!

I know, I know. You’re more confused about how to wash them. Or exactly how to put them on your baby. Don’t worry. Those topics are just as simple as today’s topic and we will be dealing with them all in the upcoming few weeks.

Nariya’s newest pet aspiration

Nariya: I wish I could have a pet bee

Will: A bee? Like a bumblebee?

Nariya: Yeah a bee. I would put hats on it so it wouldn’t get sunburned…. I would put little jackets on it…. Pants that don’t get in the way of it’s stinger….

Will: Um… I think it’s time to get a book on bees from the library…

 

Sign the Change.org petition for The 4th Trimester Bodies Project

This last Spring I had the pleasure of being able to participate in the 4th Trimester Bodies Project. I keep planning to write a post about my entire experience and the way the project is still positively effecting me today, but haven’t had a chance yet. I do encourage you to click on the link to find out more about it. Go ahead. I’ll wait.

 

Welcome back.

That was amazing right?

 

Now, on to why I bring this up today. The 4th Trimester Bodies Project is under fire AGAIN and having images removed and accounts deleted on Facebook and Instagram AGAIN. I’ve been following this project for months and have seen the people at Instagram shut down account after account belonging to the 4th Trimester Bodies Project. They are shutting down and closing off a project that has had a positive impact on So. Many. People. They are stopping the project from reaching even more people who need to see it. They are basically sending the message that breastfeeding pictures as well as pictures of mothers (wearing no less than I was wearing at the swimming pool two weeks ago) are wrong. They are sending the message that perfectly innocent images of babies are wrong and equating the images to child pornography.

 

I’m hoping my readers will take a moment today to do a few things.

1) Go to change.org and sign the petition.

2) Share the petition with your friends and family.

3) Spend a few more minutes on the 4th Trimester Bodies Project gallery enjoying all the beautiful images that Ashlee Wells Jackson has captured

My final image from The 4th Trimester Bodies Project. Hopefully sharing this today will get my rear in gear for a proper post.

My final image from The 4th Trimester Bodies Project. Hopefully sharing this today will get my rear in gear for a proper post.

 

 

4th of July

We had a pretty fabulous 4th of July this year. It was the first time in several years that our city had its own fireworks display. We’ve been mooching off Manhattan as long as I’ve lived here, but when they announced their show would be moving to the East River we decided to kick it up a notch with our own festivities. In an attempt to outdo The Big Apple, carnival rides, live music, clydesdales, food, and of course fireworks were all put on the agenda.

When I checked the weather forecast Thursday night and it called for rain, I had some fears about the day. However, Rob had asked me to participate in a Patience Challenge, so I was determined to put my apprehensions aside. You might be wondering right now what a Patience Challenge is. Simple. It’s when you try to keep your patience allllllll day even when outside factors are driving you to the brink of impatience. The winner gets bragging rights and several opportunities to say condescendingly to their opponent “You really need to work on your patience honey.”

These are a few of the things that make me impatient:

The kids bickering with each other

The kids making annoying noises

The kids doing things they aren’t supposed to do 30 seconds after I tell them not to

Being hungry

 

These are a few of the things that make Rob impatient:

Crowds

Bad weather

Holidays

Traffic

Since the days festivities involved fighting the crowds and traffic in bad weather on a holiday you might think I was a shoe in. However, my patience challenge would be starting at 5:30 AM, and his wouldn’t be starting until he rolled out of bed around 4 hours later. So I considered the playing field pretty even.

The day got off to a great start. Once everyone was awake and ready to go we headed to Dunkin Donuts for a good ol’ American breakfast of star shaped, cream filled, frosting covered, sugary goodness as well as ice coffee for the adult crowd. I also discovered the Oreo Cream donut which is still taunting me in my dreams at night.

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As we headed home the forecasted rain began to make its appearance. We ate lunch (because everyone knows when you have donuts for breakfast you’re hungry 30 seconds later) and let the kids play wii (because it’s easiest to hold on to every ounce of your patience when the creatures that make you most impatient are stuck in a trance).

Eventually the batteries on the wii controller died and it was time for the children to find a little self entertainment. They promptly settled on jumping off the headboard of Nariya’s bed. I know this may not sound like the safest idea, which is why I kindly asked them to stop, which they did for 30 seconds, until I left the room, at which point they quickly resumed the game. I could feel my blood start to boil a little, but even if it came with stitches and broken bones I was going to win this patience challenge. When the scenario repeated off the couch 10 minutes later I knew it was time for us to get outside.

It was 4:45 when we arrived at the park. We decided to drive so that we could flee quickly should the rain pick up. Instead the rain decided to stop just as we were parking the car in the nearly empty parking lot. Apparently people had seen the rain and decided to skip the festivities. Meaning the park was free of traffic, bad weather, and crowds. Can you see what I’m getting at here? The opposing team was practically being given a straight line to the finish while I was being dragged even further behind by two people bickering about whether or not someone had touched someone else’s seatbelt. I strengthened my resolve. And I think I made it.

We rode the rides. We saw the horses. We heard the music. We ate the food. We watched the fireworks. It was a super fun holiday. The Patience Challenge was officially declared a tie!*

Tickets - $1.25 each Rides - Approximately 4 tickets each Math - $5 per "ride" per child

Tickets – $1.25 each
Rides – Approximately 4 tickets each
Math – $5 per “ride” per child

Approximate time for completion of this "ride": 45 seconds

Approximate time for completion of this “ride”: 45 seconds

 

Off to see Nariya's favorite thing!

Off to see Nariya’s favorite thing!

That stain came from an attempt to scale a 5 foot wide rain ravine. She didn't make it.

That stain on her shirt came from an attempt to scale a 5 foot wide rain ravine. She didn’t make it. I nicely told her not to even attempt it. She nicely decided it was worth a shot.

 

Matching shirts!

Matching shirts!

Just eating a little grass while a drunk magician stumbles around the stage

Just eating a little grass while a drunk magician stumbles around on stage

budweiser-celebrates-july-4th-with-jersey-citys-freedom-and-fireworks-festival-1

The Big Event.

 

*…by me. My husband considers himself the winner because of an unfortunate incident where I asked people not to tromp through the puddles and they decided to anyway thereby spreading their joy and mud onto innocent passerby’s and causing me to raise my voice one slight little octave while declaring through clenched teeth “I told you not to stomp in the puddles next to people!”

 

 

Sleep Regression

When Hazel was a newborn there was one term I kept hearing over and over again. Something I had never heard of with my older two fully sleep capable children. Sleep Regression. What is this sleep regression you speak of? I asked my seasoned mother friends. They all filled me in that baby would be sleeping more starting around 12 weeks, it would be bliss they said. Then BAM 4 months hits and it is all over. Forever. Your baby never sleeps again. You never sleep again. Even the neighbors never sleep again for all that 3 am screaming. It sounded pretty treacherous.

12 weeks came and Miss Hazel did indeed start sleeping more. It was bliss. Sheer bliss. Most nights required a simple 2AM feeding, a huge contrast to that every 2 hour thing of the early days. I tried not to fool myself though. I knew the Sleep Regression would be rearing it’s ugly head soon. I continued to anxiously await its appearance.

4 months came. By this time I had acquired several friends with babies the same age as Hazel.

My new mom friends with 4 month olds complained “Oh my gosh this is terrible! My baby used to sleep so well!” My seasoned mom friends with 4 month olds vented “Ugh! The sleep regression! I had blocked this from my mind!” I must be next I thought to myself.

5 months, gone. 6 months, gone. 7 months, gone.

Wow! I said to Hazel about 3 weeks ago. How lucky are we to have missed that whole sleep regression thing. Here we are at nearly 8 months and all you need is that 2AM feeding. I can so deal with this. We shared a smile and moved on with our lives.

Until I was wrong.

It started two weeks ago with the 5:30 AM feeding. This isn’t too bad I figured. I wake her up at 6:00 anyway to get ready for work/daycare. She’s just an early bird. Then the 2AM feeding morphed into a 1AM feeding, and a 3AM feeding was added, all the while maintaing the 5:30. Sometimes there was a midnight. Sometimes an 11:00PM (conveniently 15 minutes after I fell asleep myself).

I got cranky. I drank coffee. I was still cranky.

Oh my gosh this is terrible! My baby used to sleep so well! I vented to my mom friends. Ugh! The sleep regression! I had blocked that from my mind! They all responded.

So what do we do? Here we are in the thick of it and I just don’t know. I’m so exhausted. I’m having trouble focusing at work. The feeling is remarkably similar to a hangover, yet I’ve found burritos to be no match for it. If this sounds a little overdramatic that is only because I have a sneaking suspicion this might kill me.

My husband is exhausted too. And who can blame him? It must take some effort to lie in bed with a pillow over your ears every night while your wife alternates between pacing around and breastfeeding a screaming baby.

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Don’t let looks deceive you, those eyes are seconds away from opening