Friday, December 31, 2010

Ragababe Organic Two Step Diaper Review

Better late than never, but here goes. I received this diaper and two inserts from Ragababe back at the end of October so this review has been a long time coming., (sorry Joy). The problem I had with testing this diaper has absolutely NOTHING to do with the diaper itself, it was a problem of my son being a mind reader or something who seemed to just know whenever this graced his bottom and would poop in it. Darn it! So for over a month this was basically an all in one type diaper b/c after a poo a two step dipe has to be changed cover and all. Ugh. The past couple of weeks though, he seems to have been limiting his poops to other brands of diaper and I finally got my full Ragababe 2-step experience. :)

I am no stranger to 2 step diapering systems, I simply adore my flips diapers and for the sake of fair comparison left them out of the my original all in one review. Now that I have a two step rag the flips are no longer safe from having to go head to head with the awesomeness that is a Ragababe diaper.

For the uninformed, a two step diaper is basically a fancy prefold with cover... just slightly easier. The cover is water proof and wipes clean after your baby wets it. An insert that is formed to fit in the crotch of the diaper is removed after it is wet and changed while the cover is reused. When the baby poo's the entire package must be changed and put in the laundry. A two step system is for me anyway great for travel because the inserts take up so little space compared to a pocket or all in one diaper (I have never used prefolds and covers so I don't know how much space they take up). They fit easily in the diaper bag without being bulky and also fit nicely in my travel size wet bag without filling it up. Two covers and four or five inserts is good for an afternoon out. I often switch off between an all in one type diaper and the 2 step diapers during an outing.

OK so let the opinion's fly.... ;)

First off, looking at the photo's on the website website the first few times I visited I thought the Ragababe two steps fell short in the style department. My flips covers are a solid color, like most of my diapers, and I like it that way. Who wants a white diaper with little dots of color (the snaps?). Haha, who indeed. :) Turns out those little dots are pretty darn adorable and don't blend into the diaper the way the yellow snaps do on my yellow flips cover which is a HUGE plus for my color blind husband who cannot see the snaps on the flip well b/c they blend in with the diaper. Hummm, who woulda thunk? Ragababe kicked it up a notch in October and offered customers the ability to choose their snap color from a rainbow of options. Any color or color combination goes. THAT, was a BIG hit with customers and I am pleased to say they made that option a permanent thing. Whooo, show me a Florida State 2 step and I'd knock you over to be the first to order it. :P The custom snaps are a great way to show off how unique a Ragababe diaper can be.  My two step diaper happens to be Red and Blue snaps which the good folks at Ragababe called the spiderman diaper. I'm not a comic fan so when I saw a photo of it on their facebook page my mind jumped to red white and blue = Patriotic and of course my very favorite rag is my Hero all in one. I expressed my extreme desire to rob a bank so I could purchase that diaper and Ragababe took pity on me and included it with my "it's my birthday and I'll buy diapers if I want to" order. I was SUPER excited!!! So, OK, my first impression of the two steps was dead wrong, they are just as adorable as the all in ones and the extra cool part is you can personalize them. What other brand of diaper does that?? ;)

Construction and features would be the next observation I made, after I got over my excitement at having new diapers anyway lol. Here we have a diaper that is sized but fits a huge range of sizes from very tiny all the way up to 40 lbs. There are three size options to choose from. Size 0 fits babies 4-18 lbs, Size 1 fits babies 9-30 lbs, and Size 2 fits babies 15-40+ lbs. Can we say wow. I REALLY hope that by the time Nicholas is 40+lbs he is not in diapers haha. I don't think I want to heave him up onto the changing table at that weight. Anyway in a stroke of brilliance the Ragababe sizes overlap each other so that you are assured of getting the best possible fit. Each of the size's weight ranges are also fairly large so you don't have to worry about your child growing out of the diaper in a matter of weeks, which is what happened to me when I bought my very first cloth diaper. :/ I can say you'll get your money's worth as far as how long you can use these puppies which is a good thing because they aren't the least expensive option out there. As with a lot of items though you pay for form and function and the Ragababe's certainly fit the bill. The inserts for these diapers are amazing. According to the website, "RagaBabe Inserts are made of ultra soft, absorbent organic cotton Sherpa with layers of lightweight bamboo rayon inside. The insert snaps into the back of the cover and is held in place by the flap in the front." To some people, like myself for instance, what the product is made of is of less importance than whether or not it does what it says it will do. This one's a winner. Just like the all in one diaper, the sherpa inserts are the bomb when it comes to absorbing. I haven't tried it yet but I'd imagine doubling them would give a heavy wetter nighttime protection. I use pockets overnight though. The inserts themselves are sized to fit into the diapers depending on which of the three sizes you have chosen where the flip insert is made to be a one size insert which accounts for the added length (and bulk) of the insert. The really nice thing about the inserts in Ragababe is that they snap in.
This isn't a new concept or design but it IS a handy one since the insert won't slide around or bunch up while you are putting the diaper on. My poor husband experience the cure of the sliding insert on Christmas eve as he tried to wrestle Nicholas into his flips cover in the backseat of the car all on his own. Oops! So yay for snap in liners that alone makes these daddy approved. The inside of this two step is lined with a soft suede cloth. It is supposed to be softer on the babies skin and is a stark contrast to the Flips cover which isn't lined at all. The liner in spite of being a soft cloth can be wiped clean with a baby wipe between changes and dries pretty quickly.  The Ragababe signature star is held in place with their out of this world Velcro closure. Just like their all in one diapers this stuff stays stuck and closed for as long as baby is wearing the diaper. The laundry tabs function as they are intended and thus far I have not had issue with them in the laundry. I will say though that if you forget to stick the laundry tabs together and they get stuck to oh say an insert... hahaha well lets just say you'll get a glimpse of just how strong this stuff is! My husband has fallen in love with the Velcro on these diapers. He now HATES snaps and won't use anything with a snap closure if he has the choice. It certainly makes diapering a wiggle worm a bit easier.

My poor, once beloved, Flips diapers now seem kind of second rate to me. I still love them of course but I have a new main squeeze in the Ragababes and the husband certainly likes them better. The one and only sore spot with me and Ragababe is the price point. At $29.95 a pop these fabulous diapers are a tad out of my price range for now. The Flips day pack (2 covers and 6 inserts) runs $49.95 for the regular and $59.95 for the organic. The same deal on Ragababe would cost you $95.70 with two size 2 covers and four additional inserts (two inserts are included). Of course, you definitely get what you pay for. Ragababe goes out of their way to source the best of the best in organic materials and as a mother of children with allergies Ragababe creator Joy is very mindful of her materials.  Also my Ragababe two step has been getting washed A LOT in recent weeks and I feel comfortable saying it's received almost as many washes as my Flips cover and already the Flips is beginning to look worn and has a few threads sticking out  here and there. As somebody who looks a everything and assumed she will save it for the next baby a durable product is a must. That puts the price for rag's in prospective a little bit and if you are planning for more children to cloth diaper I'd put my money into the Ragababes.... if I had any to spare at the moment. ;) This is truly a case of you get what you pay for. 
While we are on the subject of value I'll state that between the two different styles of Ragababes I personally prefer the all in ones as my favorite diaper of all time and happily they are not quite out of my price range, though I do still have to save for them. My husband also prefers the all in one b/c what husband wouldn't really? Anything that functions just like a disposable is all good in his book :P Each type of diaper has it's uses, as I mentioned at the beginning of my post I like how well a two step fits more diaper changes into a smaller amount of space in my diaper bag. 

My experience with the Two step rags has been a good one overall. The great features and wonderful construction of this diaper make it a real winner. I do want at least one or two more of these diaper covers for days when a 2 step is more desirable so that I can switch back and forth between covers more easily. Like I said... show me maroon and gold - Go FSU !! :P The addition of the second cover however will likely have to wait until I have my next order of all in ones home safe and sound. Those are for my husband and encourage him to help change baby diapers lol. All of the Ragababe diapers have been holding up well to wash and wear where as I mentioned with the flips it is looking a little worn after only a couple of months. 
I think all I really need to say here to let you know how much I love these diapers is to say that I used to have money set aside as a "diaper fund". My diaper fund has converted itself into a Ragababe fund... I simply LOVE these diapers. 

oh and just a side note, Ragababe also has awesome cloth wipes- I got one as a sample and like it - and just recently introduce a Ragababe blanket made from their organic cotton that will DEFINITELY be on the shopping list next time we are expecting. Don't forget to that they run a different special every month which allows discounts on some of the items you may be purchasing and as always their shipping is a flat fee of 2.95 for your entire order. :) Just try and find a better diaper made by a better company... I Dare ya! :P

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Adventures in people watching

Sorry in advance for the judgemental tone of this post, I can't help it. I'm sharing my experience as I experienced it. Anyway, people are always judging ME for my parenting, I feel like that allows me to express my "wow you're a piece of work" observations here. If you don't like it well that's tuff close the page and don't read the rest of this post.. ;)

Today was a big day. Went to see Santa, went to pet smart, went to the in laws.... that kind of thing. I am an avid people watcher. I'm probably going to be in trouble with Saint Peter when my times comes for all the impolite observations I make about the people around me but I can't help it. The in laws gifted us with some $$$ to go out for a nice dinner. Since we had baby Nicholas with us we chose to go someplace where it would be very easy to find him something to eat. This means Golden Coral since you can always be assured to find something for everyone on a buffet. I was just returning to the table with a plate full of YUMMY! and see a skinny bitch (and I mean that in a nice way... oh OK, who am I kidding, I hate skinny people at a buffet. They make me feel fat...er) leaning over Nicholas' highchair. As I get closer I realize she is holding a toddler in her arms right in Nicholas' face. I;m a don't touch me kind of person and I usually extend that to don't touch my baby either. I am also a try and be polite in public kind of person. I greeted the toddler who's mouth was stuffed full with a pacifier and he looked at me with big huge "please get me out of here" blue eyes. He was kind of cute, mop of curly blond hair, nice skin, pleasantly plump... you know the look. The lady starts asking about what Nicholas' name is and then begins rattling off everyone she knows who is named Nicholas and tells us that her baby's last name is Nicholas. Oh... I don't really give a crap... my black eyed peas are getting cold. She then launches into the same spiel every parent I meet tends to give me telling me how old her son is and how big he is and his full name and all his nickname... again... black eyed peas getting cold, not cool. I politely nod make uh hu type sounds and smile. She then jerks her kid back out of Nicholas face and says "I don't want to get him sick... Kaden here might have a cold, his nose has been running. I was going to let them hug but well, ya know just in case.. I won't.
*moment of completely speechless*
K, crazy goober you don't want to let your kid touch my kid b/c he might be sick but it's A-OK to stick him right in Nicholas' face, like nose to nose, and let him breath all over him? Are you insane. Good lord, it's cold and flu season and YOUR kid is older and goes to day care where as my, much younger child stays home right now. Great, just Great. If Nicholas is sick next week for his very first Christmas we'll all know where he might have contracted the death flu from... Thanks a lot lady! How about this for a radical idea, how about you ask if it is OK if you get down in my space or my child's space before you just do it? I might not be a friendly person. Fat people aren't always friendly... especially at buffets right :P ROFL. Anyway how about the idea that ME, MYSELF AND I might be sick and could be coughing all over your kid?? Show a little common sense, golly!
Oh the fun didn't stop there, when this chicka walked off my husband leans over the table and says they are sitting right behind us.... as in BE POLITE AND DON'T EMBARRASS ME BY RUNNING YOUR MOUTH! LoLHahaha, wow!!! She then spent the rest of the meal complaining about how hyper her son was all the time. Hahahaha, ya think??? This poor kid though, really, he's in for a rough ride I fear. He was just fine, eating candy off his plate not doing anything to bother anyone and not being loud and not throwing food. His mother did nothing but yell at him to be quiet and to stop that and comment to her partner that ugh! sometimes she just couldn't stand the little boy. WOW! I wanted so badly to say something but well, what could you say for one and two it isn't my place. I wasn't trying to hear every word she said or really watching their table. I couldn't help it though, she was really loud and really hyper herself and I have never ever seen somebody so jittery. I dunno what drug she was on but wow. She barely ate two bites which would explain why she was skin and bones and just couldn't settle down. She also kept coming over to talk to Nicholas. Whoa.... back on up there crack hoe... these aren't the droids you're looking for. They weren't there very long, which was a relief. It takes us forever to eat b/c we share so much with Nicholas and we chat with each other and such. These people were in and out like they'd just wolfed down a happy meal at McDonald's. Nice. It was a relief when they left b/c she was starting to stress me out with all the yelling and constantly coming up to invade MY personal space. I waved bye bye to the little boy b/c she walked up to make him say bye bye to Nicholas. I understand his big please help me eyes now and feel sorry for him. Hopefully momma is just having a rough day and she isn't like that all the time.... Hopefully!!

GOSH! what is up with people today. Is it just me or does the Christmas spirit come down and sprinkle crazy dust over a bunch of people this time of year??

Oh and just a random thought. Why does the spell checker on this program think that when I type "Hahahaha: I am trying to type Chihuahua? Weird.

People, PLEASE chill... it's only Santa...

God Almighty... Some parents are freaking PSYCHO! I made this observation today while waiting in line with baby Nicholas to get a photo with Santa Clause.... well his very excellent impostor anyway. You see being Nicholas' very first Christmas I simply was AMAZINGLY excited to have his photo made sitting on Santa's lap. Excited enough that I dressed him in a little black and white plaid baby suit complete with matching bow tie. Go ahead, everyone say it together, "Awwwwwww" :) Anyway back to the point, we get to bass pro shop, ( they had FREE Santa photos, why go to the mall and pay??), and there is a line backed up about a 30 people long. Not horrible but not an in and out kind of thing either. I didn't mind waiting in line, this is SANTA after all. I was bouncing up and down like a five year old and no doubt mortifying my very tolerant husband. It wasn't long before there was a family in line behind us with two children, a boy and a girl, who were at the oldest 6 or 7 years in age. Here it is important to note that this line to see the big man was moving pretty quickly. We waited at most 15 minutes and it didn't seem like that long at all really. Now in this Bass Pro Shop they have circular clothing racks down the main isle in the area where we were waiting in line. Not a big deal, plenty of room to move around them and the line, even with a stroller. Also plenty of room to avoid the time share people who harass you near that area of the store trying to get you to go on a tour and buy stuff. :P So there we are standing in line, Nicholas making faces and waving at the two children behind us and loads of people ooohhhing and Ahhhhing over his seriously adorable outfit. Cue the crazy psycho mother with her umbrella stroller. She walks up obviously intent on taking her child to see Santa as well and realizes she has passed the end of the line and at the same time realizes that it is a rather long line. She asks the father with the two kids standing right behind me if he is in line and he replies yes. She starts to push her stroller through the opening between the clothing racks but finds the man's young son standing there. Instead of just going around on the other side of this rack she insists on trying to go through. God in heaven forbid even ONE more person should get in line before she does and cause her to wait a whole 60 seconds extra to get her photo. (*cough cough* bitch). As any sane parent would do the man asks his son to scoot aside and let the lady through on her chosen path. The little boy backs up out of the way... or tries to. In her haste to get in line behind us psycho mom rams her stroller (with a kid in it of course) between the two clothing racks and runs over this poor kid who can't back up quickly enough. When I say run over, I do mean RUN OVER. As in knocked the little critter to the ground..... >:( Are. You. Kidding. ME??!!! Mother $%#@^* !!!! As god as my witness I have beaten this lady to a pulp (yeah I know, maybe I should get that anger thing check out but seriously, what would YOU have done?!?). After knocking this poor kid, who by the way didn't even want to see Santa in the first place, to the ground she gets in line and then gushes a somewhat polite "Oh I'm so sorry" the the kid's dad who to his credit said nothing at all until his wife arrived and he, seething, told her what had happened in as polite and quiet a tone as he was capable of. I really admire this dad personally, b/c at that point an I'm sorry wouldn't have cut it. Hi, I'm Leia and this is my Attorney... my poor kid hit his head on the ground and now Christmas is ruined.... that'll be ohhh ummm the value of your house I should think :P Haha, Merry Christmas Bitch!

I have to say I was completely dumb founded. I asked if the boy was Ok and he was but... wow... just WOW!! Now listen closely parents because this is something I feel is important. 1) It is only Santa, he'll be here till 4 at which time he goes and "feeds his reindeer" and then he'll be back again until 8 or so. You'll get your chance. He's not gonna suddenly run off.
2) You children, even infants which this lady's child certainly was NOT (she was at least 3) learn from what they SEE. The person they look up to the most is usually you. Do you really want to teach them it is OK to knock over other people, be they children or adults, in order to get to something they want? Wow, that could be translated into some really serious life situations now couldn't it. That's real climbing the ladder kind of stuff. Really, be a role model of what they SHOULD do rather than an Asshole.... and for heaven sake, if you are reading this you're an adult, don't act like a spoiled child and DON'T do anything that could HARM either your own child or somebody elses. Seriously, this guy was in Bass Pro Shop wearing camo... she's lucky he didn't jerk a deer rifle down and shoot her!

Oh and here is the photo of Nicholas and Santa :) Isn't he adorable?????? Yeah, I know, right!! :) He wasn't sure what to think of Santa though. He really liked the Easter Bunny when he got his photo made with him and he REALLY LOVED all the characters at Disney he met in October. Santa... ??? Not so much lol. We plopped him down and he turned to look at this strange person and then back at us and he started to cry but then thought better of it and just turned to stare at Santa. Then photographer couldn't get his attention so he just said to hang on a second, there was no hurry. His finger was on the shutter button and we'd have the shot just as soon as he looked back in our direction. Of course when he turned around he didn't look as happy as he could have looked but oh well... he isn't screaming which is more than a lot of first timers can say :) Maybe we'll take him back or to the mall and try again. Maybe not since neither of us want to die in case we meet up with more crazy peoples... lol. ;)

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!
Love Leia and Baby Nicholas :)
(and remember Santa is watching you, so don't be a jerk!!)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Reflections in the night

The past several weeks have been hell. Baby Nicholas is having trouble sleeping to say the least. My once peaceful dreamer has turned into a screaming, crying, wide awake nightmare who no longer has any sort of schedule. This makes for a REALLY tired mommy. It also means friends and relatives are rising up with their uneducated opinions on child rearing in an effort not to help Nicholas in any way but to get ME a couple extra hours of sleep. I am 27 years old and fully capable of taking care of myself. Nicholas is 10 1/2 months old..... am I the ONLY person who see's a problem with all the advice geared towards making ME happy and better?

Last night he woke up earlier than normal about midnight, (the night before it was 4:30am), and when I did the math on how long he'd been asleep it didn't escape my notice that it had been awhile since his last dose of Tylenol to help with the teething pain. Matter of fact it was right on the money time for another dose. Another dose is just what he got along with a diaper check and a big hug. That wasn't quite enough to put him back to sleep but it was enough to make him stop crying.

At this point I had two choices to make. Put him back in bed wide awake and still hurting (since the meds of course take a little bit to help) and let him cry. OR park my butt in the antique maple rocking chair that my grandmother gave me for the nursery and offer up some additional comfort. I chose the rocker, which my sleeping husband who works a 16 hour day starting at 10 till 4 in the morning probably appreciates. It didn't take long really for a serious case of the drowsies to set in and after a few changes in position baby Nicholas was well on his way back to dreamland. I rocked back and forth and back and forth and thought about how much he's grown and how I used to be up about this time of night every night to feed him as a newborn. Oh how tiny he was.... :) That's when the thought hit me that he's really growing up. Already he's gotten so big, though still small by some standards he looks big to us. He's finally grown out of the 0-3 month sized clothes that he was in until around 7 months old. I hear him from time to time over the baby monitor waking up at night and moving around in his crib. He puts himself back to sleep though on his own, in the absence of the teething monster of course. I sat there for a long time still rocking back and forth and back and forth just watching him sleep and thinking. This stage of life may be tiring but it is also so very short. In no time at all he'll be a whole year old and not long after that he'll be headed to preschool. College is just a hop, skip, and a jump away. A high school friend has a newborn who incredibly is already 7 whole weeks old. She's just starting to see how quickly these days fly by while I sit here rocking back and forth with my sleeping baby hardly believing that he isn't just 7 weeks old anymore. The clock on the mantle in the living room chimes, and for god sake honey change the poor thing's battery it sounds awful lol, it's 1:00am and I'm pretty sleepy but I don't mind sitting here for another few minutes rocking. Nicholas twitches every now and again in his sleep but is peaceful and I wonder at the mothers who choose to stick to CIO schools of thought and have to listen to a baby who is upset and in pain when it is so much more peaceful to sit here in the rocker in the dark with the sound of the ocean coming from the sound machine on the window seal. They have to be frustrated by being awakened in the middle of the night by the teething monster and laying there wishing baby would just shut up, wear himself out already and go to sleep.They just have to lay awake and wait for him to settle down. That's the advice I got recently. "Just give him the Tylenol and let him cry until he wears himself out". humm that doesn't sound peaceful to me and anyway his crying is going to wake everyone up so if I'm going to have be awake anyway why not go in and help him go back to sleep? Turns out that he was asleep pretty quickly as opposed to an hour or more (and yup we've tested this that's how long he would keep it up)of desperate crying. The clock chimes.. well tries to chime again, it's 1:15 am and I suppose I can put him back in his crib now so I stand up and walk the two steps or so to the edge of the crib. Nicholas stretches and smiles in his sleep and I lay him down. What a cutie.

Nights like tonight aren't going to last forever. I realize that I spent a little over an hour in the nursery when it feels like only a few minutes. Time really flies. I'm sleepy but content when I crawl into bed to go to sleep. I keep seeing that sleepy little smile and I'm glad I could make him happy tonight. It won't always be so easy to please him and while I would rather sleep I don't mind these few night wakings so very much after all. I realize it won't be long before he doesn't need me to cuddle him to sleep anymore and I know that, as much as I enjoy a full nights sleep, I will miss these quiet moments in the dark. I think some mother's loose sight of that fact, that this is just a short stage of life. Getting up in the middle of the night is part of parenthood in general and in their quest for an extra hour or two of sleep they forget that their baby needs them in a way tonight that he won't always need them. I can completely understand the need for a good night's sleep but I cannot understand putting myself before Nicholas in this situation. Now if Hubby wakes up with a toothache in the middle of the night... well he's on his own! Momma is going back to bed! :P

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Ugh, Shut up Stupid Family Friend

Sometimes, you should just keep a thought to yourself. Or sometimes, and hey this is a really novel idea for some, you should get the facts on a topic before expressing an opinion. This especially applies when said opinion is 1) negative in any way or 2) judgemental in any way.

The past week has been a nightmare. Honestly, as much as I enjoyed Thanksgiving, I can see the value in not celebrating holiday's with a family meal. Nicholas ate quite a bit on "Turkey Day" and our reward was an upset tummy. For a week we had loose watery poo several times a day but  not enough to really call serious. It was enough however to give us a terrible diaper rash. He was a little red the day after Thanksgiving but the morning after that we entered diaper rash hell. That morning he had pooed in the night and it had dried to his skin. When he woke up in the morning he was VERY upset which is understandable. Daddy had to bath him to clean his rear end up. Poor poor Nicholas. We tried several different cremes and eventually realized we were going to have trouble keeping up with all the diaper changes in cloth and having enough liners to protect our cloth diapers so we fell back on disposables for a week. It didn't help much. We went through several five alarm meltdowns that usually happened whenever he had a wet diaper and it was burning his rash, We were doing everything right to treat the rash, various skin cremes, baking soda baths, and frequent diaper changes. Meanwhile we were also trying to normalize his pooping habits with a bland diet. It took almost a week but we finally got it taken care of.

About mid week we went grocery shopping and Nicholas was a happy camper off and on sitting in the cart helping us make healthy food choices. A family friend happens by and comes over to say hello. Nicholas knows her and likes her. He of course spit up on my shirt right on cue when she walked up but other than that he was a good boy meeting her again. lol. She asked how he was, he was happy enough to say hello to her but she noted that he wasn't as smiley as he normally is. It was later in the evening so being tired had something to do with it but I also explained that his hind end was a little sore so he wasn't quite 100%. Instead of asking what had happened or offering some motherly or outdated advice on treating diaper rash she gasped loudly and said "A diaper rash??? SHAME ON YOU MOMMY!!!!"
Now, pay attention students, this is the point at which a family friend goes from friend to evil hateful bitch and could wind up injured by an over tired emotionally strung out hormonal first time mother. That's not usually a good thing, especially in WalMart with witnesses. It might be a good idea to find out a few more details before you shame somebody. Not to mention her reaction was just plain RUDE. Come ON!!! You don't notice the unbrushed hair, spit up on shirt, red rimmed eyes of both parents??? Seriously? Oh that's right, you were probably a simply stellar mother who's baby never cried, got sick, had any issue whatsoever, and certainly never had diaper rash on his plastic diapered bottom. Ummm... what was that?? You don't have kids?? Oh that's right, I forgot. You're children have four legs and fur. (honestly this lady might have children, I don't know, but they certainly aren't anywhere under the age of 35 or 40 so it's been a while to say the least)
I almost couldn't speak to her after that but politely said goodbye and then cursed her all the way up the next isle. I actually quite proud that I wasn't rude right back but I did cry when I got to the car. As if my week wasn't crummy enough this lady had basically implied I was a bad mother because I couldn't control the fact that he was pooping (and wiping) more than usual and our good friend Desitin wasn't clearing it up like we thought it would.

The moral of the story is to be careful not only what you say but how you say it and make sure you understand the situation before you stick your foot in your mouth. You could really ruin someone's night and damage a first timers already shaky confidence as a parent. Better to just express a polite awwww or that's to bad or say nothing at all even than to be rude and hurtful like that.

Oh and did I mention we are also teething.... *sigh* Welcome to our little private slice of hell :)

Baby's Firtst Thanksgiving

We had a pretty good thanksgiving and Nicholas says he is ALL FOR holidays like this that are kind of about food. He had his first bite of turkey and he liked it but doesn't mind being vegetarian lol. Those sweet potatoes were YUMMY. At least Grandma's turkey wasn't dry as a bone this year :P He also ate green bean, corn, and broccoli casseroles, sweet potatoes, stuffing, mashed potatoes, carrots and cherios lol. Always have to have cherios on hand. Now I am not the one who gave him ALL of that, family members kept sneaking him stuff. As a baby he's all to happy to put anything you offer him in his mouth lol. The downside to all the feasting is that he experienced some tummy issues that hopefully are clearing up. We've had our first night since thanksgiving that he didn't poo several times and need changed, and our first normal looking poo diaper this morning. So yay. If we can keep him normal that will go a long way in helping the rash, which was getting bad but this morning looked tons better and is almost gone *knock on wood*

Can't wait until christmas!!!
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Friday, November 12, 2010

By By Breastfeeding - Forced Early Weaning

Ahhhh so it is time I suppose. We are weaning. We tried to go the whole year with breast milk and the girls (my boobs in case your not up on mommy speak) just won't cooperate. :( My supply cut itself in half just before we went on vacation in October. I went from 12+oz a day to 6. I was just starting to recover it seemed when we went on the family vacation of doom. Well the vacation was fun but unfortunately I was unable to pump during the day and it just isn't practical to set an alarm and get up three or four times at night when you're sharing a tiny room with your husband and baby who was having trouble sleeping in the first place. So I pumped in the morning before going to the parks ( we were at Disney World) and then as soon as we got back to the hotel and again before bed. Then pumped and pumped and pumped and pumped all the way home and over the next several weeks. No go. I'm not recovering. I just couldn't understand it. Then it started to dawn on me that I had heartburn, and was SUPER tired and there might be a hormonal reason my supply dropped on it own. So the thought came- OMG I'M PREGNANT!!! SHIT! *freaks out* Lucky me the baby gods aren't paying attention to me at the moment and the heartburn was just indigestion and the super tired was cause by Nicholas going through a stage of hyperactivity, and according to Clear Blue I am not expecting another creature. Thank you baby gods! Not that I don't long for another baby, I just can't handle one right now and feel like Nicholas needs me and isn't ready to share me yet. Maybe we'll spawn again in 2011, we'll see. Back to weaning, I can't justify ordering a drug from overseas that may increase my supply - maybe, if I am lucky, because I just don't take drugs all that often for one and two it would cost money and may not work. It would cost more money to get it here in the states. I am going to have to fall back on formula. We signed up for WIC and now receive 8 cans of formula and 32 cans of baby food a month. Nicholas' doctor, who is 98% the reason I had to go from nursing to pumping and now to weaning early wrote us a Rx for Neosure, which is the formula we'd been supplementing with, so that we could get that instead of Good Start formula. I guess this is an illustration of how supplementing can interfere with breastfeeding. It starts with a bottle here and there and the baby decides the bottle is easier to drink from than mommy and then begins refusing to nurse. In just one short week of pumping to measure just how much Nicholas was eating (doctor's orders when she diagnosed failure to thrive) we totally ruined any chance of continued nursing. Nicholas would no longer nurse, and would only take a bottle. Couple this with the fact that a pump is not able to remove as much milk as a baby can from mom and we were doomed with supply problems right off the bat. Where before supply wasn't the issue it was now and now we HAD to have the supplements. Some people can adjust well to exclusive pumping and can provide all the milk and more that their babies need. Some people cannot, these people are known as poor pumpers. I fall into the poor pumper group so pumping was really really bad for my supply. It's kind of sad that the more my doctor tried to help us gain weight the worse my milk supply got. I'm not saying my doctor is a big meanie or anything. She made a bad call, though who knows if she'd ever come out and admit that? My supply was fine, lack of enough milk was not the issue with Nicholas' failure to thrive. Reflux was. Once that got under control his weight took off but the damage to the breastfeeding relationship was done. I'd never say to not follow your doctor's advice but I will say to be sure they know what the problem really is before they give you advice. I have learned a lot of things that I will not do and will not allow with the next baby, which is not on it's way right now and I've got the cramps to prove it. : p I suppose we did better than most. Some don't even try, some only make it a few days or weeks. So I'm PROUD that I did everything I could to provide the best for my baby. I will be able to look at him and know I did what I was supposed to. (sorry formula mommies if that offends you - tough). At least I have been drying up slowly this past month. I guess that makes it a little easier to take, though frustrating to watch. At least it wasn't overnight and I didn't have to go through some of the painful things like blockages and engorgement that other mommas go through. So there is that :)

So here I sit looking at the breast pump and wondering where to put it so that it will not get damaged or lost and can be ready for when I need it again.  I am also wondering if I can give it one more try... Maybe the girls will suddenly decide to get up off their worthless little asses and do their job. Unlikely... but ya never know I suppose. Maybe I'll just go have a drink... hey I could have more than one now. Ah, my evening is looking up already... oh darn... we don't have anything good to drink haha

We made it 9 months, 1 week, and 2 days. :)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Baby's First Halloween and 9 months Old :)

We went to the doctor on friday for our 9 mo well baby check. Holy cow he's gonna be 9 whole months old in just three days!! Anyway he weighs 15lbs 9.6oz now. Still below the 5th percentile in growth BUT growing He is still on meds since he still seems to need them but it won't be forever We had to do blood work which was awful. I am a wuss and made John hold him for that. I He had this GIANT bandage on his poor little finger where they poked him b/c he wouldn't stop bleeding. So we got a bit of blood on our first halloween onesie :( but hopefully I can wash it out. We'll see. Afterwards he chowed down on a whole banana which was cute and funny. Oh yeah, that reminds me he's sprouted teeth!! He started that about a month ago and has two so far and I won't be sad if the rest of them take their seet time coming in. I am DREADING the day when he has two that come together - ouch! The bright side to that is he is learning to chew/mash with his gums so he's eating more of what we eat at dinner. I don't have to make baby food so often now and we've only bought canned food once to take into the parks at Disney this past month.

Halloween was fun. We started celebrating early a couple of weeks ago at Mickey's not so scary halloween party at Disney. Oh yeah, we took him to Disney haha, but that post is still being written and will have cool photos :)
 
Last week I joined a new mommy group made up of moms "like me" for lack of a better phrase. Attachment parenting, babywearing, cloth diapering, peacful parenting type ladies. It was really interesting to get to talk to them and realize that I am nowhere near what extreme could be in any of those concepts He also got to play for the first time with other kids and he's never met a stranger. He was the youngest and the smallest and he crawled right over (oh yeah he's crawling and cruising heaven help us!!) and jumped in with both feet. He's so social. He smiles all the time and loves to interact with people so I guess I shouldn't be surprised that he is the same with people his own size/age. He went with me on Thursday to the fair to talk to people about responsible dog ownership. He spent a lot of time playing with Jazz and trying to slobber on granny but when he wasn't busy with that he was smiling and flirting with strangers.

Tonight we went trick or treating for a little while and everyone loves his costume. He was in two costume contest thingies and looked adorable for both. He also played in the little baby playground and met a couple of other kids to interact with. It was cute!

So of course you opened this to see pictures not read about us lol here they are :P Pics below are of ;
1-3 today at mall
4 is him with our pumpkins before heading out for trick or treating

Attached Thumbnails
Baby Nicholas' First Halloween and updates-2010_1031firsthalloween0005.jpg   Baby Nicholas' First Halloween and updates-2010_1031firsthalloween0002.jpg   Baby Nicholas' First Halloween and updates-2010_1031firsthalloween0021.jpg   Baby Nicholas' First Halloween and updates-2010_1031firsthalloween0026.jpg

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Ragababe Winner

 CONGRATS !!!!!!

According to random.org Ashley Reynolds will be receiving a brand new aqua diaper. Ashley, I'm e-mailing you at the address specified and you have 48 hours to claim your RaB :) I'm going to offer my congratulations although I know you have really been cursed. *evil laugh here* Rags are like 'tater chips, you won't be able to stop at just one!! Mwhahahahaha ENJOY your new addiction! ;) 

Monday, October 11, 2010

Ragababe Easy All In One Review and Giveaway


For the last month I have been testing out a new easy all in one Ragababe diaper with the intent to do a review. The whole thing came about when my Life Plus Baby was chosen at random to receive, review, and give away one of the new Ragababe diapers. Another blog was chosen to review the Ragababe Organic 2 Step diapers and reviews for ragababe products have since appeared in other online venues as well. Honestly it's no wonder, they are a new company unveiling a truly amazing product line. This review is simply about the diaper itself as I see it and my experiences with it. Sooo lets get to it shall we?

First of all my diaper arrived in the mail last month and it aside from being adorable, (and by adorable I really mean ADORABLE), it is obviously well made. Nice fabric, sturdy construction, and you can see the sewing and design was well thought out at just a glance. First thing I did was begin comparing it to a couple of my other diapers. Ok, Ok, who am I kidding, we all know that is a big fat lie. First thing I did was slap it on baby Nicholas and post a photo to the ragababe facebook page lol. Second thing I did was begin really looking it over and setting it up next to the all mighty (pain in the butt to snap on) Rumparoo and the great (gosh darn it it came undone again) Thirsty's Duo diaper. I left the Flip diaper out of the line up. The ragababe has a sturdy velcro closure, elastic in the legs and waist, a sewn in soaker with a pocket for you to add inserts to if you so desire, and all in all is daddy approved for ease of use. I thought I loved my rumparoo's and my Thirsties but as it turns out I didn't know just how great a cloth diaper could be.

The very first thing you notice, if you look past the cute Hero print I was lucky enough to snag, is that this puppy has a velcro closure, not a snap in sight. Hey now, speaking of puppies, maybe ragababe could find some puppy print for their diapers. (Hey I'm a dog trainer so zip it! I can dream can't I?). Anyway back to the diaper review, which is the whole reason we are here. Where were we... ah yes Velcro. Now from my past, and somewhat limited experience with velcro I kind of hate it and was wary to say the least. The thirsties after all HAS come off all on it's own via poor velcro in the past. I am a snaps kind of girl and like I've said I was skeptical. The moment I tried to pull the velcro apart to open the diaper my skepticism vanished, vamoose, right down the drain. The ragababe velcro has some serious hold. We're talking way better that grand finale hair spray in poodle hair kind of hold... amazing. What's better is that even with a bit of lint from washing and drying several times stuck in the velcro it still holds just as well. The same cannot be said for the other guys, see above comment about the thirsties. Not sure what cloth diapering planet this stuff came from but good job ragababe for putting it to good use in these diapers. Another plus with the velcro is the strip along the front of the diaper is nice and wide as are the matching pieces on the fastener portion of the diaper. Lots of surface area to grab. The laundry tabs on this diaper actually function and have done so for a month now... when I remember to put them to use that is. :)  To add to the cute factor if your baby happens to be a bean pole like mine and the diaper is closed about as small as it can go the velcro tabs come together to form a star in the front of the diaper. Not a function of the diaper really but half the fun of cloth is the wow and cute factor. Amazing Velcro aside the real gem of this diaper is the sewn in soaker which is made from, according to their website, quick drying, light weight, ultra absorbent bamboo rayon. I'd have to say I am in agreement with the adjectives describing the soaker. Ultra absorbent it most definitely is. The very first time Nicholas wore this diaper we got caught away from home longer than expected and he spent almost 5 hours in it, rather than the 2 hours which is normal for us, and he did not leak nor was his skin all that wet when I changed him. Nice. I did try out this diaper overnight with no added absorbency and the first time it did leak. However I also feel compelled to add that it was a 14 hour deal and it only leaked a tiny bit. When I went into the nursery at the normal time I wake Nicholas up he was dry but made it very clear he was not ready to wake up. You know how a sleeping baby can be so I left him to it and had a little extra sleep myself and a nice quiet breakfast. A disposable can't hold my little one for 8 to 10 hours and this one only leaked a half dollar sized amount onto a sleeper at 14 hours so I'd say that qualifies this as a good option for overnight use, especially if you add an insert to the pocket (if you have a really heavy wetter). The second time I tried it Nicholas was not allowed to sleep longer than 11 hours and the diaper did not leak and we did not need any additional insert. Quick drying is also a spot on description. It dries just as quickly as any of my pocket diapers and their separate inserts apart from the Jersey hemp insert that the good people at Thirsties came up with. That thing takes forever to dry! I mentioned above that this is a well made diaper and yup I got a chance to test out theory as well courtesy of my standard poodle who snatched it off the clothes line and tore around the yard with it bent on destruction. It passed the Saleen test so I feel pretty safe in assuring you that it isn't going to fall apart in the dyer or anything lol. If it can stand up to a large puppy I'd say it's high quality for sure! It is also super easy for dad's or babysitters to use. Especially if you have friends or family that are unsure about their positions on cloth diapering. This diaper is just as easy as a disposable and all a sitter would need to do is take diaper off deposite into wetbag and stick a new diaper one. Because there are no snaps it functions just like the average pampers.

Of course this diaper isn't free and price is an issue with me, hence the reccent addition of Kawaii's to my stash. When I first looked at it on their facebook page and website I was a little tiny bit miffed at the price, which is on the higher end of normal for a good quality diaper that is going to last. It's not nearly as expensive of some crazy fitted diapers I've seen online and not nearly as cheap as my darling Kawaii's. It's right at the same price I paid for the rumparoo. To be quite honest had I been in my right mind and thinking clearly when I bought the RaR I wouldn't have dared to spend that much on a diaper. Clever diaper store owner though... she didn't have prices listed on the actual product and left it up to you to ask how much it was, which I didn't. Where the RaR is bulky the RaB is NOT. It's a very trim diaper, especially considering it is an all in one. Sizing for this diaper is also great in my opinion. The sizes overlap by a lot. A small goes up to 20 lbs and a meduim fits babies 14 ro 30 lbs. I love that. You are sure to get a good fit this way and as we all probably know a good fit is a big part of making sure you have no leaks. When you think of it that way, the wide range of fit alone is well worth the price. The awesome performance of the diaper itself, joy reccently posted on the Ragababe fan page she had weighed a diaper after an overnight use and it was almost a pound of potty with no leaks, I'd say the diaper is well worth the asking price... maybe even more. I'd pay more but Shhhhh let's keep that our little secrete so nobody gets the idea to raise the price of these babies.I'd personally go and turn tricks on the street corner if that is what it took to get more of these. Come on October 21st!! Birthday Birthday Birthday!! Hoping I get some diaper cash lol

All in all I really really like this diaper. The velcro has changed my mind about velcro diapers and I am looking forward to using these as an easier than snaps option for babysitters and daddy's. Is it any wonder that over the last several weeks I have fallen in LOVE. The cute print, the awesome quality, not having to worry about leaking... it all adds up to a momma who would be willing to go turn tricks on the street corner if that is what it took to acquire more of these. Baby Nicholas likes them as well and I am able to wrangle him into one even on his most wiggly days. It is simply the best diaper I have tried and I am saving my pennies until I can get more. Lucky for me my birthday is at the end of this month!
  My suggestion to you would be to head over right now to read more about the Easy All in One features one the Ragababe website and check out all the colors and adorable prints this diaper comes in!

Baby Nicholas wearing the Ragababe Hero Print Easy All In One

Lucky you, dear reader, you're going to get a chance to win an easy all in one diaper from Ragababe in your choice of color or print. Be advised though... they are like potato chips, you won't be able to stop at just one and you and I might just be fighting over street corners in the future lol. Entering is easy, see below, and we'll run our giveaway through October 24.

Give Away mandatory entry
Please understand you have to complete all of the mandatory entry requirements and THEN leave your comment.
1) Publicly follow our blog via google friend connect or network blogs on facebook
2)Become a Fan of the Life Plus Baby Facebook page and the Ragababe Facebook page and leave a comment to tell Ragababe who sent you!!
3) View the Ragababe website and pick out your an easy all in one diaper in a solid color or a print
4) Leave a comment on this blog after you've done all of the above with your name, e-mail address, and which diaper you'd like to receive (and if you were referred by a friend leave their name as well). 

Additional entries
Pick any or all of these to receive additional entries, each is worth one extra entry.
1) Share a link to this review on your facebook, twitter, favorite forum, but don't spam please! (post link to your post in comment section each link is worth 1 extra entry)
2) Refer a friend, for every friend you send who completes the requirements to enter the giveaway and leaves your name along with their comment you'll get an extra entry
3)Blog about this giveaway and post a link to your blog entry

Give away run through October 24 and entries will close at 11:59  on the 24th. Winner will be announced on October 26 and will be contacted via the e-mail address they provided (Definitely check the blog on 10-26 to see if you've won just in case you don't get your e-mail). Winner must respond to e-mail within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen. Good Luck!!

More Ragababe reviews
Revies on RaB's FB page
Coupon Mommy of 3's Ragababe Organic All in Two review (giveaway running until October 13)
All About Cloth Diapers

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Teen Mom Domestic Violence...

This weeks episode of MTV's Teen Mom was extremely disturbing. The show in case you are not familiar is a follow up from the show 16 and Pregnant which followed several teenage girls through their pregnancies, labor and delivery and the first few weeks as a mom. Of the mom's who were followed MTV selected four to film the daily life of a teen mom with and so the TV hit Teen Mom was born. I watched 16 and pregnant as well as Teen Mom my entire pregnancy with the final show being aired while I was in the hospital after delivering Nicholas. I watched it on the DVR after coming home. I confess I am addicted.
One of the four mothers on the show however, Amber, really rubs my nerves raw. Over the past two seasons viewers have watched this young lady go from bad to worse with boyfriend and baby daddy Gary who at the start of season one was working and paying all the bills while Amber stayed home to care for their daughter Leah. Amber did nothing but complain and eventually left Gary and took Leah to a hotel. Gary of course chased after her and Amber decided to try and get a job and apply for welfare and moved into her own apartment. It appeared that was about as bad as it was going to get and at the end of the season on the two hours reunion special we find Amber and Gary once again back together and living under the same roof. The start of season two sees Amber and Gary still living together and obviously having sex since she had a "pregnancy scare" as she called it. Attention stunt is more like it but whatever. Thank the good lord that little test was negative!! Gary once again, really we've lost count of how many times this has happened, asked Amber to marry him and she once again said yes. The very next week she was at his throat and the week after that she had once again called off the wedding. Poor Gary. They have been fighting every since though Gary still lives with Amber.
This past week however crazy reached a whole new level as Amber loses her cool (again) and not only verbally assaults Gary but also physically assaults him as well..... TWICE. Gary to his credit stayed very calm and calming asked her to stop yelling and even suggested that child services needed to be called since this was so inappropriate for their daughter. Amber flips out and punches Gary in the face. Gary responds by picking up their daughter and walking out the door stating that he is keeping Leah forever. Amber continues to assert that Leah is HER daughter and in HER custody... I honestly don't think she understands how custody works. When Gary comes back to the house without Leah Amber is seen piling his personally belongings onto he stairs outside her front door and then assaults Gary again. She even kicks him in the back on his way down the stairs carrying a TV. Crazy. My husband is a tolerant man but no way in the world would he allow me to get away with that kind of treatment of him. Throughout the rest of the episode Amber complains to friends about how unfair it is for Gary to take Leah away. Unfair??? I don't think so. If you're willing to treat an adult the way she has treated Gary, sooner or later that aggression is going to be directed at the child. Leah is already treated like crap by Amber who is constantly yelling at her and trying to put her in her crib alone so she doesn't have to deal with her. I feel really bad for Leah.
I have to say though, that as disturbing as I found watching this episode what I find more disturbing is the apparent lack of reaction from the film crew. Shouldn't somebody step in, especially since there is a child involved, and stop an action that is criminal? Seriously? MTV is going to do nothing? If Gary is smart, and that remains to be seen, he would take that footage straight to a judge and have Leah taken from Amber and placed solely in his care. For all his many faults he at least obviously loves his daughter and steps up to be the only real parent she has known thus far. Why he didn't call the police is as much a mystery to me as why the film crew did not intervene. The most MTV did was to post a short add at the commercial break following that segment about a hot line for domestic violence. The situation that was caught on film is serious so why it wasn't treated appropriately I'll never know.

And a little advice for Amber; Sweetie, you "aint all that". You're not especially attractive, you don't have men banging down your door, and you could use a few lessons in anger management and parenting. GET HELP!! If you can't get help or simply don't want to how about making sure the next time you're going to assault somebody you don't do it in front millions of viewers on a nationally broadcast TV show... Have some common sense.

Diaper Addictions :)

Hello, my name is Leia and I am diaper addict....

It's true, even though I have not been in cloth full time I am already addicted. I LOVE THEM. I am always willing to show one of them off when somebody is curious. I am always willing to state the facts of what this generations cloth diapers are like when family or friends is freaked out by them. Lately I am finding myself shopping for the latest and greatest diapers, especially custom made ones. It's amazing to me how the addiction comes so quickly.
It starts with a couple of diapers. I'm gonna test the waters and see if I like this and feel like I can do it. Once you get that first big poo diaper and you take care of it on your own with no trouble you begin to realize "Hey, this is going to be easy". You set about to aquire a few more diapers so that you can use cloth every day or so until you can stash up enough to do cloth full time. Now here I think is where the addiction starts. You see there are SO many diapers out there on the market each one a little different. You decide to try more than one type. First I really loved the thirsties diaper, but then I tried a flips cover. The rumparoom is soooo darn cute with the little whale design on it and is great for overnight. You start to try and see about getting diapers most like the ones you like best (in this case the Flips and the Thirsties) for a price easier on the wallet than the name brands. Enter Kawaii diapers, which are on the way. Then you discover the velcro on your thirsties diaper is a little less than perfect and slips a bit when baby moves around. You begin to lust after more snaps and start saving up money for more flips covers and inserts. The inserts though with just the one cover that I have are a bit of a pain to change, not quite as easy as disposables. You decide a pocket is the way to go and wish Thirsties came with snaps b/c you don't have to remove the insert before washing like you do with other pockets. Then it happens.... you win a brand new Ragababe all in one diaper in a giveaway and you are IN LOVE. You now hate your thirsties which to begin with was your favorite and visit the ragababe site daily just to look at all the cute designs and wish you had a little extra cash on hand to stock up on those. Your birthday and Christmas are coming up you keep reminding yourself as you sigh and wish they would hurry up.I find myself on ebay now typing in searching for cloth diapers looking for a good deal or for something unique. I found something today that almost had me jumping up and down in excitement. A WAHM living right here in my area had a listing for custom made diapers one of which was an FSU fabric and the other was a mickey mouse print. OMG!! Now you are thinking you need to work more not so that you can help your husband with bills, though that is very important. but so you can afford more diapers. Your baby simply MUST have the cutest tushie in town or your life is practically over. Blocking ebay from your computer might be a good idea at this point. :) Yup I am officially addicted to cloth diapers and the concept that Nicholas must have the most adorable diapers ever. The latest and greatest -that's for him!

.... I am also addicted to baby carriers.... don't get me started on wraps, ring slings, mei tais and more... :P

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Baby Food Wars III - New foods and Pureeing fun

In the world of homemade baby food there are tons of handy gadgets aimed at not only encouraging you to make your own food but also try to make it easier. Things like the baby cook which steams and then purees all in one container are great.... I don't have any of those. I have an oaster blender with a baby food setting and an electric steamer for cooking. I do ok usually though and making my own food is not only fairly easy but also rewarding as I see the Ziploc bags I baby food piling up in the freezer. Not to mention the fact that it is healthier since I can buy organic if I desire and it is cheaper than pre-made baby food. What more could you want?

Today was fruit day. I was out of peaches and needed to make more since Nicholas eats peaches quite a lot. I decided it might be smart to try and make my food out of a bag of frozen peaches from Walmart. Mistake I guess. For the price I could have gotten several fresh peaches so I thought maybe about the same amount would be in the bag. Nopers. I steamed 'em up and stuck them in the blender and hit the button. When I was done I looked down at the sad looking amount of bright orange goo and wondered if I needed to add more water. That can't be all the puree I'm gonna get out of the things... can it? It was. I poured it into the ice cube tray and it only filled up half. *Sigh* This did not bode well for the container of blueberries in the fridge that were also bagged and frozen and had been steamed the night before. I pureed them and only got 7 oz. Wellllll bummer. It filled up the rest of the tray which was good I guess but hardly worth freezing in a way. He could have easily eaten that amount in a couple of days before it went bad. Oh well I froze it anyway and I now have little peach and blueberry cubes. We offered Nicholas some of the blueberry mix before I froze it and he seemed to like it. I didn't really get to watch him eat it because I was stuck doing dishes and cleaning the kitchen (more on that later) so daddy got roped into feeding baby breakfast which he shovels in as fast as possible so he can go back to playing his computer games lol.

The next thing on the list to puree were the green beans I had also steamed last night. Yay for green beans, Nicholas loves those! Maybe because these were cold already though they didn't blend as nicely as they have in the past. I ended up adding more water that I think I had to add last time and there was still a couple of stubborn beans that insisted on floating around on top of the mix instead of getting pulled down to be pureed. So in true blond moment fashion I pulled off the lid of the blender and poked the swirling mix with a spoon to get the stubborn beans down near the blades. For about five seconds it seemed like that was going to work out for me and then the green bean mixture blew up in my face. I ducked, sort of and ended up with green sludge in my hair, on my face, my shirt, the counter, cabinets, wall.... you get the idea. Uh oh... that's not good! I said a couple of less than mommy approved words and shut the blender off. To my horror the same couple of green beans were STILL floating around on the top refusing to be pureed. I picked them out and fed them to the dog. Thank goodness for two standard poodles who will eat anything. After I finished cleaning green gremlin goo off the wall I poured the chunky puree into it's own ice cube tray and stuck both trays in the freezer. Will take them out in the morning and put the little cubes into bags and start the process over again with a different kind of food. I have a ton of new foods to get made up!

Speaking of new foods, did I mention Nicholas had blueberries today. I read up on blueberries and found that they are not related to strawberries and are relatively low on the allergen scale. So I went ahead and decided to try some. Nicholas seemed to like them and ate them up for his daddy with no problem. The one problem with blueberries is that blueberry juice (the leftover cooking liquid) stains. As in can stain everything. It took me forever to get little blue spots off my counter top after a couple of drips of the juice spilled. It would certainly make a good dye. Other new foods I have in the kitchen and ready to try include pumpkin, kiwi, pears, parsnips, corn, mango and apples. I can't wait to see what he thinks of some of the new fruits and pumpkin. I really hope he likes them and they don't cause any digestive messes. In cloth diapers cleaning those off is never fun :P Plus as messy as making baby food obviously can be extra poo is not a bright spot in the day lol.

Cheers! Happy Feeding!!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The dangers of the internet - careful what you post

Recently a situation arose on a website I frequent where a trusted member of a very close knit online community turned out to be less than genuine. Several members were suspicious of her for quite some time. She would contradict herself often on how many children she had (living and dead) and it wasn't long before people began to notice that some of the photos she posted of her baby definitely appeared to be of different babies who just looked similar. Stories about her life and basic day to day situations also did not add up and raised red flags. At best this person has a problem telling the truth and at worst she was possibly a predator. Concern was raised about her stealing personal information as well as photos of babies from the message boards. Eventually tension built to a level where the suspicious members called out the fake mother and started a whole huge emotional mess on the board.

Some people failed to understand why this was such a big issue. Here is a link to help with that, it was posted by somebody to try and warn others to be careful what they put out there on the Internet because creeps like this might be watching you and even interacting with you. Careful what you post, and careful who you trust.

The aftermath of this discovery has been playing out and ripping apart this online community for several days now and I personally find it sad and more than a little immature. This board was reduced to the level of a bunch of drama loving mothers who wanted to drag out an issue for as long as possible maybe to give themselves something to do. I was horrified to read a post attacking a new member, who had joined shortly before all this came out, accusing her of also being fake and demanding her personal information. I was even more shocked that the new member actually willingly provided her info - come on!! Really?? I couldn't help but put my two cents in on that one with a big old SHAME ON YOU LADIES!! Gosh! Another thread was written to "the creep" and was one of the most hateful things I have ever read. While I understood the emotion behind the writing I couldn't help but be saddened by this posters need for name calling, borderline threats, and hateful put downs. What was worse was the response to such a post was almost without fail positive and supportive. What kind of place is this?? When a long time member climbed up on her high horse and called the poster on her poor behavior she was attacked by several other members. The very first reply after her post was "shut up Michelle" Really?? Again, I ask, what kind of place is this? Certainly not a very healthy environment.

Most disturbing of all was the belief that the site admin was somehow responsible for not only taking care of this problem (the profile of the accused was deleted and banned?) but also responsible for safeguarding the privacy and safety of it's members which is the whole point of this posting. I sat at my computer astounded that somebody would voice such a ridiculous belief. How on earth can the admin protect you from what you yourself post? They cannot. They cannot control who see's the content you willing put out for public view. If you provide your e-mail address or other personal information either on the actual message board or via private message and that information is stolen or used in a way you don't approve of you've got nobody to blame but yourself. Same goes for photos. Posting photos is part of the fun of being a part of this community but you do so at your own risk. Once it's out there it's fair game. It was so interesting to me how very few of these moms wanted to step up and take responsibility not for what admin allowed to happen but for what they themselves allowed to happen. It is a startling clear reminder that we, especially as mothers, need to be very careful what we post online in regards to personal photos and information. Don't give somebody you've never met your full name. Have an e-mail address that cannot be connected to your home or business if you're going to give it out. Be careful what you allow to be viewable by the masses on social networking sites like myspace and facebook. Most of this stuff is common sense. If you took a nude photo and you didn't want everyone you went to high school to be able to view it nor did you want the creepy band geek to print out that photo and post it up on his bedroom wall then how about you don't post that mother on facebook? While we're at it unless you're a super model how about we not take nude photos, K? Being a mother comes with a set of challenges like no other and communities like this provide support and advise and are invaluable. As a first time mom I don't know what I would do without all my Feb Mommy friends that I have made. We went through pregnancy together, labor and delivery, and are now experiences our babies first year as one big happy family. Ahhh the bonds of sisterhood :) That said, while we discuss some very personal things on this board we still need to use caution and not post details about our day to day lives that can be used by a crazy person to track us or our children down. Photos should be limited and if possible make a graphic out of the photo, like a banner, so that it is harder for somebody to steal and claim as their own. Something with your username scrawled across it in such as way as to be very difficult to crop out would perhaps be helpful. Even if you grow to trust to members you are talking to daily, and so many of us did just that, you never know who might be watching from the shadows.

Privacy is a concern in this big new world made smaller by the Internet super highway. It is however OUR responsibility to maintain that privacy and not put personal info out. If a hacker gets into the site and steals info you input while making your profile, that is admins problem to deal with, but what we put out on our own viewable to the public we are responsible for. Never forget that out here in cyber space you may very well be being watched and you may not even know it. If you join a group and random members start demanding your personal info in order to verify who you are tell them to shove it! You don't need to put yourself at risk that way to make friends. We also need to understand that so far, as emotional as it has gotten, this has proved to be a non issue. Until somebody proves otherwise photos don't appear to have been stolen and no crime appears to have been committed. That is important to note really because some of these mothers just can't seem to let the issue go. It is a sign of just how emotionally connected to each other we have become that some people are so upset that they can't do anything but obsess over this non issue. I am annoyed and upset as well to be honest, but I am appalled that the behavior of certain members even though I would still count them as good friends. I'm just a little shocked.

The moral of the story here is simple and straight forward -  Be careful mommies!!

Oh and BTW, for my mommy friends/readers who are in the known and members of this community you may or may not agree with my post. That's OK, but remember - My blog, My opinion, thoughts, and feelings, and if you don't have something nice to say keep your lips zipped. I only allow positive comments so don't waste your time writing negative ones, they won't be read by me or anyone else so lighten up and chill with the voice of reason in your head.
-Cheers :)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Friday, September 17, 2010

Yay Ragababe Review (Coming soon!)

Our humble little blog has been selected to review Ragababe Diapers :) I'm so excited!! The Diapers will arrive soon, I'm not sure which style we'll get but I can't wait to share a review on them with everyone. I've been eyeballing these and drooling over them for a while now and I can tell you they look great. Stay tuned I will definitely let everyone know when they arrive! :)

We will also be hosting a ragababe giveaway where one reader can win the ragababe easy all in one diaper that I will be reviewing in your choice of color and size :) 

Thursday, September 16, 2010

First overnight in cloth diapers

Cloth diapering has been going well. We are still trying to burn through the last of our disposables but the the last box is full of pampers baby dry. I have never used these before and they started leaking and man they smell funky so I got brave and decided it was time to try a cloth diaper overnight. I selected the rumparoo for this application because I already had two inserts for it. I loaded them both into the diaper stuck the whole package on Nicholas and proceeded with out bedtime ritual. Nicholas sleeps on his tummy now so he didn't mind the extra fluffiness which was a good thing because with both the inserts he had a pretty bulky butt. :) He is SO cute in cloth, just have to put that out there because it's just crossed my mind. How I was every against cloth diapers I can't imagine. Back to the point though Nicholas went to bed and slept for 12 hours straight. When he got up in the morning I halfway expected a leak. It was after all dun dun duunnnnn a cloth diaper surely it leaked right? NOPE! He was pretty dry and everything was very well contained. I saw everything because he had a massive poo which is what woke him up lol. This was the first time he's had a big poo in cloth diaper so it was an experience getting it taken care of. No major deal though, we can do this! All in all I was very impressed with the whole overnight in the cloth and think it will be pretty easy to transition to doing cloth every night as soon as we are out of disposables. I can't wait !!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Nicholas Goes To Homecoming 2010

Nicholas and Aunt Kay after last weeks game
Today was Homecoming for the high school I went to. It's a big deal in this small town, but then what event isn't a big deal here in the south? We'll party for any reason we can find. There's of course a pep rally, a parade down mainstreet, a football game, which we hope to win, and a dance at the school. I was super excited to take Nicholas to the parade since he's never been to one before! We have a little po'dunk parade where the cheerleaders ride 4 wheelers, the band outshines the ROTC in marching skills, and various pee wee football teams/cheerleaders, business, local politicians, and of course the homecoming court ride down mainstreet in the back of trucks on floats or on the tops of convertible sports cars waving and tossing beads and candy out to the masses. What can I say, small town charm ;) It's fun. I remember riding more than a couple of times in the homecoming parade both as a young'in and as a highschooler. That was fun to. Now though fun has a whole new meaning and charm because we have a baby to show the world to and to show off to the world. Nicholas experienced his very first parade today and attended the homecoming football game as well. His Aunt Kay (my younger sister) just happens to be in the color guard with the band (The Big Red Machine, she's a riffle), and we had fun watching her on the field as well as marching in the parade.

Jazz showing her school spirit
Anyway we loaded up Nicholas, the stroller, and a spray painted (non toxic hair color of course!!) poodle and trucked ourselves off to down town Crestview to stand on mainstreet and watch the parade. It kicked off with a quarter of crestview;s finest (cops) driving their squad cars blaring their sirens and in general scaring little kids and waving like big goobers. I backed off and stood against the building with baby and dog and covered Nicholas' ears -just in case. He's not a fan of sirens after all and they ARE kind of loud and shrill. He didn't get upset so YAY, brave baby! :)  I was so proud. Jazz the poodle was almost as big a hit as Nicholas because of her colored ears and tail. Several people came over to pet her and love on her. She was a happy happy poodle and it didn't matter at all that she couldn't eat any of the yummy candy being thrown her way lol.
Nicholas hung over Aunt Donna's shoulder to watch the high school's band, The Big Red Machine, came marching up the street playing our fight song as well as several other pieces commonly heard at games through out the fall. We got lucky and Aunt Kay was marching on OUR side of the street so we were able to see her. Which really means we were able to yell her name and embarrass her, what is family for after all?? LoL. We did at least get a little wave and a smile so maybe she wasn't totally mortified. See for yourself in the video below :)



The only two downers to Nicholas' first parade experience was that he learned flying candy can be dangerous. His was leaning down over Big Daddy's shoulder and got beaned in the head with a sucker thrown by somebody on one of the floats. Awwwwwwwwwwww poor baby!!! He cried for a few minutes, VERY offended and then the middle school band marched up and caught his attention and he was instantly in awe again. Good thing babies are easily amused lol. (To the person who hit my baby with a lollie pop... BEWARE, I shall seek revenge!! Hell hath no furry like a pissed off MOTHER!) The second issue was the heat. Last week at the football game the weather was warm but not humid and there was a nice breeze. Today it was like 200 degrees in the shade and a billion % humidity. In other words, we live in Florida. LoL. It was a bit warm and sticky but we had shade and ice water to soak a rag in and give him a rub down so he didn't get to hot. He didn't seem terribly uncomfortable. Of course if he had we would have gone ahead and left. As it was it was just a bit sweaty. He really enjoyed himself on the whole and flashed his big baby grin to get tons of beads tossed his way which naturally, in true redneck hick fashion we immediately put on him and let him wear for the duration of the parade. All in all good family fun. 
Nicholas watching the parade with Big daddy

Nicholas showing off his beads with Aunt Donna







                                                                 

Falling asleep with Mommy
After the parade was over we waltzed back to our car grateful for the air conditioning that awaited and ran home to drop Jazz off so that we could meet the family at a local Mexican place for a bite to eat before the game. That was rushed b/c we were late due to the fact that mommies have to pump in order to keep making milk and then traffic was awful on our way back across town to eat. Still though the cold sweet tea was what I was really after and I had enough time to guzzle down three of those so it didn't matter to much. Good food and lots of laughing some cool pictures taken by somebody other than mommy, which is why they don't appear here, and yummy nachos. Nice! :)

snoozing in the stands
Yay, Mommy's Favorite! Just like last week he was in love with the band as and the cheerleaders. I'm not sure why he likes the cheerleaders so much but he watches and I just know he is learning all their moves and the words to the cheers. He cuddled with mommy, took a nap in the bleachers, and woke up to do a little dance with daddy before halftime arrived. I was surprised he wasn't more fussy than he was, he hadn't had more than a 15 or 20 minute nap all day and he was tired at one point. Somebody got the fantastic idea to lay a couple of kushie towels down so that he could nap on a little bed in the stands. Soooooooooo cute and soooooooo convenient. It was MUCH cooler for him and for me not to be cuddled up together. We pulled his little shirt up so he could catch more of a breeze on his skin and he was a happy content baby. He even slept through everyone doing the wave and never so much as moved. Then he woke up and was happy to cheer for the team and went back to watching the cheerleaders lol. The viedo below shows his team spirit dance :) Maybe it helped b/c our team won! Yay!
 
We wrapped up our evening with a trip to sonic for ice cream and a bottle of milk for Nicholas. We joked, we laughed, and we were all merry. Hubby got to shoot several people, including Aunt Kay and Aunt Donna with the new water cannon he installed on his car. That was really the highlight of the after game festivities and provided tons of laughs since it's a HUGE surprised to be soaked by a car :P All in all I think we had a pretty good day and night. Baby Nicholas got to experience a couple of firsts and see several family members and hubby got to experience homecoming in our town for the first time since moving here two years ago. He wasn't thrilled about the idea but I think he accidentally had fun anyway :) I know Nicholas and I did :) I sure can't wait to take him to the Christmas Parade!! :)