Yes, I’m crazy

I am indeed trying cloth diapering. I’m sure the majority of my friends are asking, “why?” and thinking “she’s nuts”. I admit it, I could quite possibly be going crazy! haha But for me this was really thought out and I didn’t take it lightly. (because this is definitely not a cheap experiment)

Here are my reasons for deciding to try cloth diapering out:

1. They are SO dare cute! I was looking at some of the cloth diapering sites (after realizing that a good portion of my friends cloth diaper) and noticed just how cute they are! You could literally just have your child wear a shirt and diaper all day and have them looking cute and stylish! I mean come on! Look at THIS one!

my little ponyIsn’t that the cutest little diaper?! Not to mention that Elenore’s favorite tv show is now My Little Pony lol

2. It felt like the next logical step in my DIY enterprises. I have homemade baby wipes, and homemade laundry detergent. I can’t make diapers, but I can purchase diapers that just need to be washed! (I really can’t sew lol)

3. After looking back at our past purchases of diaper wipes and diapers, we have already spent the equivalent of a full cloth diapering system and a cloth diapering system can be used for all our future children.

4. After talking to my cloth diapering friends I realized it actually wasn’t that hard and that I could do it. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still super nervous for her first poopy diaper haha but after talking about it with ladies, I do believe I can do it lol

Now its just time to try them out! We selected gdiapers as our first diapers. (I have 2, and if we love them, I’ll purchase more) I am currently prepping and washing them! I’ll post a picture of Elenore wearing them real soon 🙂 So excited to get started!

http://www.gdiapers.com/shop/little-gpants-diaper-covers

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VBAC’s, Home births and Pregnancy

Pregnancy has really been on my mind lately. Elenore is now 15 almost 16 months and I really want a little brother or sister for her to play with; so its been weighing heavily on my heart. Especially after losing my last one, its just that constant thought that “I would have been ____ weeks today if I hadn’t lost them”. I’m SO ready to be pregnant again. I really want to try again. With Matt on board; we are starting to try again, and I’m SO excited!

So with that on my mind, naturally I have been starting to think about the future. Do I want a VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean)? If I can’t get a hospital around here to agree to a VBAC; would I want a home birth or just allow another c-section? With a home birth who would I even employ to be my mid wife? Water birth? Etc.

I seriously didn’t realize how hard it would be to just find a doctor/hospital around here who is even willing to let me try to give birth naturally! It really shouldn’t be this hard! I have done my research and have decided that I am fully committed to giving birth vaginally. There is nothing wrong with me, I am perfectly healthy and I would have given birth vaginally if I had been allowed and hadn’t caught an infection. Its infuriating to find out that some hospitals have VBAC Bans and that some doctors wont even let you try. That is beyond wrong! No one should be forced to do a c-section unless the child is in danger.

So then my mind turns to home births. After some research I found a mid wife in the San Angelo area that is highly recommended and does water births. Water birth just sounds wonderful to me! Being a water addict (Swim instructor, Life guard, did swim team, water polo, was a swim coach, feel most at home in the water, etc) the idea of being able to lounge in a big warm bath during labor sounds fantastic! Plus, looking at all the “bonuses” that giving birth in water gives you, its more and more tempting.

Known benefits of water labor and waterbirth

•  Facilitates mobility and enables the mother to assume any position which is comfortable for labor and birth

•  Speeds up labor

•  Reduces blood pressure

•  Gives mother more feelings of control

•  Provides significant pain relief

•  Promotes relaxation

•  Conserves her energy

•  Reduces the need for drugs and interventions
•  Gives mother a private protected space

•  Reduces perineal trauma and eliminates episiotomies

•  Reduces cesarean section rates
•  Is highly rated by mothers – typically stating they would consider giving birth in water again

•  Is highly rated by experienced providers

•  Encourages an easier birth for mother and a gentler welcome for baby

 

Placing a pool of water in a birth room changes the atmosphere immediately.  Voices get softer, the mother stays calmer and everyone becomes less stressed.

 

The effect of buoyancy that deep water immersion creates allows spontaneous movement of the mother.  No one has to help the mother get into a new position. She moves as her body and the position of the baby dictate.  Movement helps open the pelvis, allowing the baby to descend.

 

When a woman in labor relaxes in a warm deep bath, free from gravity’s pull on her body, with sensory stimulation reduced, her body is less likely to secrete stress-related hormones. This allows her body to produce the pain inhibitors-endorphins-that complement labor. Noradrenaline and catecholamines, the hormones that are released during stress, actually raise the blood pressure and can inhibit or slow labor. A laboring woman who is able to relax physically, is able to relax mentally as well. Many women, midwives, and doctors acknowledge the analgesic effect of water. Thousands of these mothers state they would never be able to consider laboring without water again.

Source: Waterbirth.org

With the all above in my mind, I know that if I did do a home birth that it would be a water birth. It just comes down to if I’m brave enough to attempt it. I’m about 5 minutes from an emergency hospital and 10 from a NICU, so that wouldn’t be an issue, and I wanted a natural birth last time, but gave in to an epidural because of the inducing drugs making my labor way harder then it would have been… So to NOT have the option and to NOT have doctors trying to push drugs on me would be great. Its just getting over the nerves of it all. Glad I have 9+ months to figure out what I want. Not to mention it makes Matt nervous when I mention home birth… haha I will have to find a way to put him at ease if i do that.

Another factor is that Tricare doesn’t cover home births, so we would be paying out of pocket. On one hand that’s a pain, but if I want to be able to labor the way I want, that might be my only option. Looking at the midwife in San Angelo, she has Military discounts and has payment plans, so we  should be able to swing it. So much to think about! And I’m not even pregnant yet! Haha

Think I’m annoying now? Wait till I’m actually pregnant again! hehe

Overall, I’m just hoping that I get a thumbs up from the hospitals around here and I can stop over thinking everything! haha

Homemade Glass wipes, and bleach wipes (aka Clorox wipes)

Today’s adventure is to make homemade glass wipes and bleach wipes! I’m super excited to make them. The recipes are super easy and my hubby is super excited to not have to purchase those anymore! So here are the recipes for all you DIY mommas! 🙂

Glass cleaner wipes

Ingredients:

2 cups water
1/2 rubbing alcohol
1/2 cup vinegar

Mix all together and pour over your paper towels. (I just cut a paper towel roll in half and then put them into a container, you can do it anyway that makes sense to you)

Bleach Wipes (Clorox wipes)

Ingredients:

1/2 cup bleach
21/2 cups water

Mix together and pour over paper towels. Put into resealable container.

Hope these help you ladies out some with budgeting!

 

 

 

Homemade Baby Wipes

Made myself some homemade Baby wipes today! They smell so nice and work great!

Homemade-Baby-Wipes1

Here is the recipe:

Ingredients

  • 2 1/4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons baby wash
  • 1 tablespoon baby oil or mineral oil

Directions

You take half of the paper towel roll, put it in the container. Mix together to and a quarter cups of water, two tablespoons of baby wash and 1 tablespoon of baby oil or mineral oil depending on if you would like the fragrance or not. Then you are going to pour that over the paper towel roll. Then you are going to reach in and pull out the cardboard tubing. It’s easier to pull out once it’s wet. Then, as you need a wipe, you just reach for the center and pull out as you need a wipe, very easy. You can cut little slats in the top of the container so you can pull it out and it remains closed. Or you can leave it and just pull the lid off as you go.

Homemade Laundry Detergent

I suddenly realized that I never posted the recipe for laundry detergent! So here it is! (It is HE compatible)

Homemade Laundry Detergent

You will need:

1 bar of soap (any kind you want)
1 cup of Borax
1 cup of washing soda
a big pot ( that holds more than 2 gallons)
a grater
a funnel
a long spoon
2 empty gallon jugs/containers (I bought some from Walmart, but you can use your left over milk jugs)

My jugs full of Homemade laundry detergent

My jugs full of Homemade laundry detergent

 

Directions:
1. Grate your soap into your pot

2.Fill one of your jugs with water and pour into pot. Cook until the soap is completely dissolved.

3. Add borax and laundry soap

4. Bring to boil. I have found that it will sometimes boil over here, keep an eye on it.

5. Turn off heat. Add one more gallon of cold water. Stir well.

6. Pour into your containers (funnel really helps here) and let sit overnight. They will thicken. Mine sometimes separate and I just shake before I pour into my machine.

1/2 cup per load.

Got my recipe here: http://whynotsew.blogspot.com/2010/08/how-to-make-homemade-laundry-detergent.html

 

Frugal

dishwasher-detergent-1-300x323

I have been feeling really frugal lately and have been loving it! Not to mention Matt is loving the fact that I now make a ton of stuff that used to run our family up in grocery bills. My newest project is homemade Dishwasher detergent! You all know we spend WAY to much money on that stuff (along with Laundry soap, but I also have been making that and saving our family a ton) and its actually relatively easy to make! Here are the ingredients:

  • 2 c borax
  • 2 c Arm & Hammer washing soda
  • 2 c lemi shine*
  • 1 c kosher salt

Easy right?! So easy! Tonight I will be making it! Yippee! Something else to add to my homemade collection. Oh and FYI: I now LOVE to do laundry because I get a real sense of accomplishment using my homemade laundry detergent. hahaha No, I still hate to fold and put away, but the actual cleaning part is very fun for me (Especially with my new front loaders! YIPPEE)

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir until mixed.
  2. The citric acid in the lemi shine will make everything get a bit hard.  The first time I made this I put it directly into my container and it all got really really hard.  So I suggest letting this mixture sit out in a bowl for a couple of days, stirring often.  You will still get a few little “balls” of detergent, but that is just fine!  You just don’t want it all in one big piece!  Believe me, this is the best way to go!!
  3. The lemi shine suggests running an empty dishwasher cycle with just that in order to clean your dishwasher.  I followed their directions for good measure!
  4. *Fill your rinse aid spot with white vinegar.  Add a small container with white vinegar in it to the top rack of your dishwasher before running.  Don’t put it in your rinse aid compartment! (will make a big difference!)
  5. Use 1 tbs of detergent per load of dishes.
    (http://simplydesigning.blogspot.com/2011/05/hard-water-stains-dishwasher-detergent.html#)

Mommy hand me downs

So in my short time as a mom, I have discovered that whether you want them or not, other mothers are going to give you advice. This could either be annoying (which the majority of time, it is lol) or you can embrace some of them and try them out. After thinking about this last night (Elenore wasn’t sleeping so I spent the majority of the night in her rocking chair) I decided to accumulate some of the best advice I have received so far into one place. Hopefully these help some other mommas! Because we all know, we all are just trying to survive and enjoy this little thing called; motherhood. ❤

* Gripe water. This stuff is amazing! It was my go to when Elenore was in her earliest months. If she was acting fussy, and wasn’t tired, hungry or just feeling clingy, I gave her a dose of it. It calmed whatever was making her cry and she would calm down. The purpose of Gripe water is to calm colic, tummy aches, cure hiccups, and have a calming effect on fussy babies. This momma highly recommends it! Here is where I got mine: http://www.walgreens.com/store/c/mommy%27s-bliss-gripe-water-dietary-supplement-liquid/ID=prod3460643-product?ext=gooMedicines_ampersand_Treatments_PLA_Childrens_Stomach_Remedies_prod3460643_pla&adtype={adtype}&Kpid=prod3460643&sst=46201059-220c-c728-fb10-00006e47d7e9

*The 5 S’s. When I was told about this from my dear friend Becky while I was pregnant, I thought it was to good to be true. But one night when nothing was working to get Elenore to sleep, I tried it out, and it worked! Miraculously actually, I couldn’t believe it! The 5 S’s are:

  • Swaddling: Tight swaddling provides the continuous touching and support your baby is used to experiencing within the womb.
  • Side/stomach position: The infant is placed on their left side to assist in digestion, or on their stomach to provide reassuring support. “But never use the stomach position for putting your baby to sleep,” cautions Karp. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is linked to stomach-down sleep positions. When a baby is in a stomach down position do not leave them even for a moment.
  • Shushing sounds: These imitate the continual whooshing sound made by the blood flowing through arteries near the womb.
  • Swinging: Newborns are used to the swinging motions within their mother’s womb, so entering the gravity driven world of the outside is like a sailor adapting to land after nine months at sea. “It’s disorienting and unnatural,” says Karp. Rocking, car rides, and other swinging movements all can help.
  • Sucking: “Sucking has its effects deep within the nervous system,” notes Karp, “and triggers the calming reflex and releases natural chemicals within the brain.”
    (http://www.happiestbaby.com/5-ss-system-may-help-colic-symptoms/

When they are used all together, Elenore would instantly calm and sleep. It was amazing! Highly recommend this one to mothers with colicky babies.

*Amber teething necklaces. Now this one I was really skeptical about when I first heard about it. So your telling me that a simple necklace has anti inflammatory qualities and that it helps with teething?! Some mothers were telling me their children never had teething symptoms while wearing one, and others were saying it significantly helped their children with the pain. After asking many mothers (the general response was either in extreme favor, or had never heard of them), and realizing that all the mothers I talked to were in favor of amber necklaces, I decided to buy one. I got one for Elenore, and one for myself. I wanted to know if it could help me out with headaches, and stuff (I was also told once that they help with fertility, so I wanted any help I could get). What was the outcome? Elenore doesn’t have teething pains, or teething fussiness while wearing hers! The minute I take it off though (for more than a few hours) she starts to fuss, starts biting on everything, and gets irate. I learned fast to keep it on 24/7 (other than bathtime). As far as me? While wearing mine, I had less headaches, a shoulder that was sore for weeks calmed, and my period cramps were almost non existent. Now I’m not going to say its a cure all, or that it works for everyone, but it definitely has helped this family! (This is where I purchased ours: http://www.amberizon.com/shop/natural_baltic_amber_necklaces_amber_necklace_jewelry_shop.html)

*The Rock and Play Sleeper: This thing is amazing! One of my mom’s friends got it for me and let me tell you, this was all Elenore slept in till she was around 4-5 months old! Its perfect for breastfeeding momma’s because it is small and can sit right next to the bed for easy access. (not just for bf mommas though, I have many friends whom were formula mommas and they loved theirs too) It also rocks, so those nights when all the baby wants is constant motion, you can lay in bed and continue to rock your child. I loved mine! I think every momma needs one 🙂 (http://www.amazon.com/Fisher-Price-Newborn-Rock-Sleeper-Yellow/dp/B002M77N22)

*Swaddles- I always had a swaddle on Elenore! Those things are the best. I found a easy swaddle that didn’t take much thought and just kept Elenore in it all the time. (excluding; tummy time and bath time of course lol) I can thank my friend Jenny for this one. There is just something about keeping a baby swaddled that helps them to always feel calm and reasureed. My swaddles were used till they started to fall apart haha Here are the ones I used: http://www.amazon.com/Loving-Baby-Swaddle-Blanket-Calming/dp/B00196QVLQ

*Vicks on the bottom of the feet: This one I had never heard of till just a few months ago! If you put vicks on the bottom of your child’s feet, it clears their head and calms coughing! Let me tell you, ever since I found this one out, its the go to when Elenore is sick. It works great! I have no idea how it works, but it definitely does. Matt even did it to himself one night and told me that it was the oddest thing, but he could breathe better afterwards! Crazy. Also, I have been using baby vicks since Elenore was only a few months old. That stuff is a must for mother’s with infants. We all know we can’t give them any medicine for stuffed up noses, so when I found out about Baby vicks, I was over joyed! Also try out some of the Vicks baby bath wash, that stuff is great as well!

Baby vicks: http://www.walmart.com/ip/12169679?adid=22222222227000148518&wmlspartner=wlpa&wl0=&wl1=g&wl2=&wl3=21486607510&wl4=&wl5=pla&veh=sem

Stuffy nose ease Bubble Bath: http://www.drugstore.com/california-baby-bubble-bath-aromatherapy-eucaplyptus-ease/qxp54790?catid=182480

*Bumbos- This one is going to get some people mad at me. But this thing was great with my child. I used it when she was not quite ready to sit up on her own, but she really wanted to be able to see everything. I also used it as a on the go high chair for my swim meets. If this is used correctly there is no danger to your child. (This means, keeping yourself in arm range, not placing on high surfaces, and never leaving your child unattended! Also, the minute your child can actually move the bumbo with their feet, or can start lifting their butt our of the seat, its time to retire the bumbo) I plan on using this for all my future children. (http://www.target.com/s/bumbo+baby?ref=tgt_adv_XS000000&AFID=google&CPNG=baby_bouncer+rocker+infant+seat&adgroup=bumbo_bumbo&LNM=Bumbo%20baby&MT=broad&LID=9p6384503&KID=46201059-220c-c728-fb10-00006e47d7e9)

*Moby wraps: LOVED this thing. I used it whenever I was out and about. Kept Elenore really calm while shopping. This is a must for all mommas! If you don’t like the moby, try one of the other hundreds of baby carriers. They are a must. (http://www.mobywrap.com/mw/Home.htm)

Those are all I can think of right this moment, but if I think of more; or if some wonderful momma’s give me some more that work wonders, I’ll share them with you guys!

motherhood

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