Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The scoop (or poop) on cloth diapering...

I am sure I have mentioned on here before that we cloth diaper Little Miss Sunshine. When we found out I was getting laid off, I looked into it as an alternative to pricey disposables. And the more info I found, the more I felt it was 100% the right decision for us.

I LOVE Cloth Diapering. I love everything about it. The diapers are ADORABLE, it really isn't much more work than using disposables, and I feel like I'm doing some small part to help the environment, and my baby's behind at the same time.

The reality is - these aren't our mom's cloth diapers. I have yet to use a diaper pin or a pair of rubber pants. My current favorite style of cloth diapers are my pocket diapers - diapers that are already waterproofed, you simply put some kind of absorbent insert in, put the diaper on the baby, and go... with fitteds (cloth diapers that do require a cover of some kind) a close second. I have yet to try wool covers, although I hear great things about them.

I've made many forays into the cloth diapering world, trying out many different types of diapers, and even making my own (which are pretty darn cute, if I do say so myself...). I have learned many tricks and tips along the way.

One thing about cloth diapering that nobody prepared me for was washing them. You can't wash cloth diapers with regular detergent. Well, you can, but then you are going to be doing a million clean water rinses to get detergent residue out. Because detergent residue affects your diapers. Reduces their absorbency, causes diaper rash, etc... Lucky for us, there are some great mommies out there, who, through trial and error, have developed cloth diaper safe detergents! these are clean rinsing detergents who get your diapers nice and bright, soft and most importantly CLEAN, without leaving residue behind. There are a tons of brands out there. I have used Rockin' Green Cloth Diaper Detergent personally myself since I discovered cloth detergents. Another brand I'd like to try out is Clean B Detergent. And, in fact, they are having a little giveaway right now, in celebration of reaching 750 fans on Facebook. (Did you like how I segued that giveaway in there? Talent, huh?) You should go check them out. Tell them I sent you. And maybe, just maybe, if you don't already, give some thought to cloth diapering yourself...

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Okay, Okay...

I am REALLY bad about posting pictures. I realize this. My excuse these days is lack of a working camera other than the one in my cell phone. Not much of an excuse, I know. But it's the one I'm working with.

I know I promised pics of Little Miss Sunshine a few days ago. I'm finally getting around to getting them up for you - aren't you happy now?

Miss Sunshine LOVES to climb on things. The, well, whatever it was, in our hotel room was no exception... I don't know how many times I took her down off that thing during our stay... I did mention that while she likes to climb UP on things, she hasn't quite gotten the getting DOWN part yet, didn't I?

Another love of ours these days is Mommy's purse. I cannot leave that thing anywhere CLOSE to within her reach, or the contents will be scattered near and far. I even had to go get a new wallet because she figured out how to open mine, and I spent the better part of a day searching for where she hid my Driver's License.

And let's not forget cell phones. I mean, really, what toddler DOESN'T love cell phones? Miss Sunshine is drawn to them like... well, that metaphor isn't really appropriate for this post... but she's drawn to them. This is an old phone I had in my purse which she helped herself to. On the bright side, she kept putting it up to her ear and saying "ah-oh", which I believe was "Hello" in Sunshine speak. Because it wasn't "Uh-oh" which she says perfectly... So technically she has a new word in her vocabulary. Along with down, which is a necessity, since, as I previously mentioned, she can't get herself down off of things she climbs on. Well, she could, she just hasn't realized that yet, so she won't...

Friday, July 16, 2010

Me time.

I'm hoping to get some "me time" in this weekend. Feels like forever since I've had "me time" and I NEED it. Expecially after this week. I hate traveling alone with a small child. I find it so incredibly stressful, even though Miss Sunshine is well on her way to becoming a seasoned traveler and does amazingly well on planes and in airports.

I have a gift certificate to a day spa my lovely sister sent me for my 30th birthday... Did I mention I turn 31 in a month? Yeah - a whole year has nearly passed and I have yet to find the time to use my gift card. Sad, isn't it? But I'm going to try valiantly to sneak away after Daddy Mac gets home from work on Saturday and get that massage I've been thinking about for the last 11 months.

I will update with some (rather poor quality) pictures of Miss Sunshine later today - she has been happily wreaking havoc on my purse this morning, and I have a few shots of that, as well as an exhibition of her climbing skills courtesy of the desk in our hotel room this week. Bear in mind, these were all taken with my cell phone as our camera is STILL out of commission...

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

hello from the Windy City... or not...

Well, I tried valiantly to update you all from my phone while in Chicago with Miss Sunshine yesterday. Didn't really work out as planned, though. For some strange reason, it would let me create a post and title it, but when I tried to add a body, yep, nothing happened. Things that make you go HMMMM.

So today was a LONG LONG LONG day. I mean, LONG. We had our six month post-op team visit at Shriner's today. Talk about overwhelming - seeing 8 doctors in 6 hours is a bit much. And then, to top that off, we got to spend 4 hours hanging out at the airport. I don't recommend doing that with a 17 month old, FYI.

So, got mixed reviews today. Miss Sunshine needs her ear tubes replaced - which I obviously already knew, as one came out about a month and a half or so ago. She does have fluid again in that ear, and the ENT said that the other one looks like it is on it's way out as well. They will do the replacement in Chicago. Another up and back trip I am not looking forward to. However, they will not schedule it until she is caught up on her immunizations (we had to postpone her 15 month shots due to our insurance issues - but Daddy Mac's new insurance kicks in August 1, so she will get caught up at her 18 month appointment - so not a huge issue there). So I have to have the doctor's office fax her shot records as soon as they are updated and then they will call to schedule the procedure. So I have no idea WHEN it is happening at this point, just that it IS happening.

She DID pass her hearing test (even though she failed the tympanogram in her right ear - tympanogram is a test checking for fluid in the ears). Now, what they told me on this is that her OVERALL hearing is within normal ranges. She is too young yet to check hearing in each individual ear - so there is a good chance she is hearing better out of one ear than the other, but her combined hearing out of both ears is normal. So that's good. Hopefully once the tubes are replaced, she will do even better - I'm sure she's not hearing as well out of her right ear since it's full of fluid - everything will sound muffled in that ear.

They are a bit concerned about her speech. They want us to up our sessions with Early Intervention, which I will address with our local speech therapist next week when she comes, and concentrate on getting her to correctly pronounce things on her FIRST attempt. They told me that her speech is the best indication as to the success of the palate repair. Meaning, even though things LOOK good (which they LOOK great, according to the plastic surgeon), the underlying muscles and tissues, etc, which are not visible now that the roof of her mouth is closed, may not be good. The best indicator they have of this is her speech - so if we don't get things moving along, she may be considered a candidate for additional surgery. We would prefer she not need any more surgeries, so I am hoping that we can get her speech caught up to where it needs to be. One issue we have is that Miss Sunshine is very much one of those kids who does not want to fail. What I mean by this is that if she is not absolutely sure that she can do something right the first time she tries it, she won't try it at all. She concentrates very hard on our speech when we pattern things for her and try to get her to repeat. But if it's a word she's not comfortable with, she is MUTE. Not a sound. As she indicated today to the speech therapist by refusing to make even one little PEEP while we were in with her. Of course, when we sat down later in the afternoon with the entire team for the final eval, she was Chatty Cathy. Typical. Ah well. I know they didn't mean to scare me with the speech thing, but since I was already concerned about it, now my mind is racing with "what ifs". So, I'm trying to calm myself and think happy thoughts. She WILL progress with her speech like they want, she WON'T need additional surgery. So on and so forth.

That's my updates at this point. If I think of, or remember, more (today was pretty overwhelming as I've mentioned, so my minds something of a muddle right now) I'll be sure to update. But for now, I'm going to head to my nice, comfy bed complete with the husband I missed while I was out of town, and attempt to catch up on some of the sleep I also missed!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

I'm tired.

I'm tired of being tired. Of being stressed. Of so many things.

It seems like, for every step we take forward, we take three steps back. We are trying SO hard to get back on our feet financially, and every time we feel like we make progress, something else pops up. I'm really getting tired of struggling. And I know Daddy Mac feels the strain as well. Probably even more so than I do, since he has that ingrained sense of responsibility to "take care of his family" and right now, I know he doesn't feel like he is doing that. I certainly feel he is doing everything he can to take care of us. We just aren't in the best position right now, through no fault of our own.

The last few days, it feels like I simply can't catch up on my sleep. I lack the motivation to do ANYTHING around the house. I'm not feeling well. Miss Sunshine has the snottiest nose she's ever had in her life, and even Monster Boy is sounding a bit froggy today. I think it's an attack of the allergies. None of us have a fever or are exhibiting any signs of illness other than these awful runny noses and a scratchy throat in my case. Oh, and that whole completely unmotivated thing I have going on. I did do some laundry today. That's something, right? Our house is a mess, and I just sit there and look at it and think "I hate that this is a mess." But the ability to actually get up and do something about it is beyond me right now. It's becoming pretty obvious to me that those little pink pills the doctor gave me to get me through my post-partum depression are not doing their job. But I'll have to suffer through another month until we have insurance before I can go back and get a new pill to try. One of these years everything will be back to normal. I have faith, just some days it's a little hidden behind everything else. Today is one of those days.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Of tents and tunnels...

Our week has been non-stop. And Little Miss Sunshine has apparently come down with either allergies or a cold. We have one heck of a stuffy, runny nose today. No fever, knock on wood, and she's a bit whiny, but not lethargic or otherwise sick-acting. So I'm hoping for allergies. We are supposed to go to a barbeque tonight at the house of some friends we haven't seen in nearly a year. Hopefully she wakes up from her nap still fever-free so that we can go.

Last night, my grandmother bought the kids a little play tent and tunnel set. Naturally, Monster Boy wanted it set up as soon as we got it home. Not being in the mood to argue, I obliged him. He and Miss Sunshine had a blast running (well, okay, CRAWLING) through the tunnel over and over again, until I informed them it was bedtime.

Well past bedtime, if you want the honest truth. Monster Boy then campaigned to sleep in said tent instead of his bed. Again not in the mood to argue, I moved the tent into his bedroom and he slept in there with his pillow and blanket last night. Shortly after I put him to bed, he came out to request that I have Daddy Mac come give him hugs and kisses when he got home (he was out fishing with our "brother-in-law"). As he headed back down the hallway towards the tent, he stops short and says to me, " Wait! How will Dad know where I am when he gets home?". I was vastly amused by this statement as the tent took up pretty much all the floor space available in his bedroom, but I refrained from chuckling at him, and instead reassured him that I would tell Daddy he was sleeping in the tent so he would know where he was. Suitably reassured, Monster Boy headed back to bed, and slept in that tent all night long.