Monday, April 30, 2012

Morning Sickness...

is something that is all too fresh in my mind right now!  I've had a hard time this pregnancy, so I thought I'd try to share some things that have helped me through the past few months.  Thankfully it's finally mostly passed, and I just get hit with waves of nauseousness occasionally but for about the first 3 1/2 months, I was nauseous what seems like 20 hours out of the day.  (I'm sure it wasn't but it sure knocked me out some days!)

Some things that worked for me:

  • Ginger Ale - tried and true it did help subside the mild cases of sickness for awhile
  • Morning Ease natural vitamin - just a couple of days after starting to take this every evening with my supper and prenatal vitamin, and my nauseousness immediately subsided and came more infrequently.  I don't know if it was because I was around 11-12 weeks so it was just the time in my pregnancy to subside or if it really works that great, but it definitely helped me right away!  I bought it at a local Akins Natural Food Mart, but I'm sure you can find it or something similar at other natural food stores as well.  I also found it online at Amazon.  (It contains Vitamin B6, Red Raspberry, Ginger & Milk Thistle)
  • SeaBands - this one I was pretty leery to try, but I was at my wits end of being sick, so I gave it a shot!  And What do you know?  It worked!  I definitely wasn't going to be winning any awards for best fashion accessories but I didn't care!  Whenever I felt a wave coming on, I'd slip on my SeaBands and it would ease up after just a few minutes.  Or when I was getting sick most every day, I just wore them all day taking them off just to sleep, shower, etc.  Just remember that you do have to wear them both to get the full effect.
  • Eating less at a time but eating more frequently - this is one I had a hard time doing since I was chasing around a 1 year old most of the day, but when I did have a chance to do it, it helped a lot.  I  definitely noticed that once I started getting hungry, I had to eat NOW or I was going to get sick so this helped me from ever really getting hungry thus subsiding my nauseousness.

Hopefully you don't ever have to use these tips because you're the lucky ones that don't get hit with morning sickness but if you're more like me - I hope these help you too!


Friday, April 27, 2012

Teething Necklace

Have you heard of Baltic Amber teething necklaces?!?
I hadn't until I saw my cousin's daughter walking around with a necklace and asked her about it.  So what did I do when my daughter was about 4 months old and drooling/starting to teethe? Bought her a necklace of course!  So what are they?  They are baby necklaces made of baltic amber beads that are individually knotted on so as not to cause a choking hazard if it were to break.  Baltic amber is a natural analgesic which is thought to numb the area to alleviate teething pain and reduce inflammation.  (They also make bracelets for adults for arthritis, etc)

I feel as if it's worked very well.  The first two teeth that came through, I didn't even know she was teething except for the red bottom that she got along with it!  I had heard HORROR stories of those children that had such hard times teething and was amazed at how well she acted.  I'm not willing to take it off however to see how well it's working but if she's not complaining...neither am I!

I know you can buy them online but I bought mine at a local natural family store.  Here's a link to one to check out (I know nothing about this site- just googled and linked to it)  I was told that the cloudy light yellow ones are the strongest...after I had purchased my daughters multi-colored stone one because I thought it was prettiest of course!

I should note however that my daughter is currently teething and having a hard time of it...BUT I think 3 teeth are coming in at once so I don't think much is going to cure that pain... :(  Like I said though, I'm not willing to take it off to see if her crankiness gets any worse!

UPDATE:  My sister informed me that she spoke with the people at the local boutique I bought mine at - CircleMe - and they said that the light, raw or cloudy stones are the strongest.  Also - if you're worried about them looking 'too girly' for your baby boy, check out the raw ones.  They look pretty studly on those handsome little boys!  :) 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Cloth Diapering 101: What you need to know before you begin

I'm going to start by giving you a very general overview of what cloth diapering is like these days.  I'm sure most people imagine big white cloths and pins sticking into baby's legs and that is definitely not what modern cloth is about!

I think the most popular style of modern cloth diapers is the one size pocket diaper.  This means that, generally, it will fit babies from 8-35 lbs or so.

Aren't they cute?!?!
The pocket means that there is a slit in the back of the diaper where you can add or remove inserts depending on the absorbency you need for your specific child.  The majority of my fluff stash are BumGenius 4.0s (shown above) by Cotton Babies.  You can get them in velcro (known as aplix in the diapering world) or snaps.  Aplix is easier for sizing around the waist but also easier for a toddler to figure out how to take off - As I've recently learned with my just-turned 1 year old!

Now there are other styles of cloth as well - prefolds & covers would be the closest to what you were originally picturing in your mind and they are definitely the most budget friendly choice.

All In Ones (AIOs) - are the most like disposables in that the absorbent part of the diaper is built in to them.  No stuffing or unstuffing just wash, dry and put back on baby's bum.  Downfall is that you cannot add absorbency if you discover you need it (as I probably would with my heavy wetter)

Hybrids or All In Twos - are where you have a cover and an absorbent layer to go inside.  Sometimes the layer snaps in and sometimes it lays in the cover.  Examples of this would be the Flip Diaper or the Grovia.

These are the basic types of diapers.  I know I didn't cover all of them but these are what you will hear about most of the time.  Now back to the basics of cloth diapering....

This is probably the most daunting thing for first time cloth diaperers...but it doesn't have to be!  It really isn't that involved!  For starters, when baby's start our and are exclusively breast fed (EBF) you don't have to do anything to the poo diapers before putting them into your washing machine.  Once your baby starts solids, you will probably want to get the poo off the diapers before storing for wash day.  You can either do this the old fashioned way by swishing them in the toilet and flushing, a diaper sprayer (YAY!) or you can use either disposable or reusable diaper liners.  You'll want to wash about every 2 days - you can sometimes stretch it to 3 if you have to but I definitely recommend every 2.  Now you'll want to store your dirty diapers in a wet bag - they have a variety of kinds - either a zippered bag or one you can put as a liner in a trash can and then you can just throw the wet bag in the washer with the dirty diapers.  You'll want to do a cold prewash to rinse out all the excess poo (EBF poo is water soluble that's why you don't have to wash it off before putting into the washer) and then follow your specific diapers recommendations, but usually a warm or hot water wash with detergent followed by an extra rinse.  Sometimes your wash routine will have to very from this - it just depends on the type of machine you have, if you have soft or hard water, etc but this is a good starting point.  Then you throw your inserts into the dryer if you want and you will want to line dry your covers.  Wa-La - no harder than doing the rest of the laundry at your house right?!?

Traveling with Cloth
One of the other prevalent questions about cloth I've heard is "How do you take cloth out in public with you?"  This was intimidating for me as a newbie too but after I tried it the first time I was wondering 'what was I so worried about?!?'  So when you go out and about you'll want to take your diapers along with a small wet bag - I use something similar to this Planet Wise.  I think I have the medium size.  So when you change your diaper, it's just like at home, take out the new cloth diaper, put the dirty one in the wet bag and then put the wet bag back in your diaper bag.  This is also a handy reason to use cloth wipes because how often do you just wipe baby's bottom, stick the dirty wipe in the diaper and roll it up? (at least typically with disposables)  So if you also use cloth wipes you can do the same with your cloth diaper and throw it in the wash at home with your dipes!  (I have to admit though that I haven't gotten to doing this when traveling yet but I'm not sure why...I have found way too many washed disposable wipes in my dryer and had to pick out the little fibers that were left - you'd think that would be inspiration enough to get me to change huh?!  This is my goal in the near future...)

Why Cloth Diaper?
It's better for your baby.  It's better for the environment.  It's better on your wallet.  Do you need more reasons?!?  Studies have shown that it can take up to 500 years for ONE disposable diaper to decompose in the crazy is that?  That means that if you use disposables on  your child, that that diaper will still be there when their great-great grandchildren's children are walking this earth!  Also studies have shown that cloth diapering can save you an average of $1000-2000 for ONE child.  So if you reuse the same cloth diapers for your second, third, fourth, etc child then that savings would multiply awful fast!  I obviously haven't done any of these studies first hand but I have found some pretty legitimate sites online (that I'll try to post) that have and it sure made me feel good for cloth diapering...not that I haven't also had to use a disposable or two once in awhile...

Well I think I've told you the basics of cloth diapering and hopefully you found it somewhat interesting.  Please post questions as comments and I will try to answer them as quickly as possible.  I always have people asking me about cloth diapering, so I'm glad I finally have a place I can refer them to instead of retyping my advice/info every time.  :)  Feel free to refer your friends, family or strangers who have asked you about cd'ing to this site as well.

Also want to note that I did not receive any compensation from the linked sites - I merely frequent those sites so I used them as reference points.  Also be sure to follow your cloth diaper manufacturer recommendations on proper usage and washing instructions.


I decided to start this blog as a place to post my thoughts, ideas, tips, and tricks (and failures of what you shouldn't do!)  I'm a stay at home mom of a 1 year old with another on the way.  I'm no expert on anything but hopefully you'll get some good ideas from me and please share with me any tips you have as well!

I'm not going to post just about being a mom either - it will also be about daily life in general: nutrition, home decorating ideas, crafts, etc.  I like to do a lot of different things with my free time (however little I have of it) so there will be quite a variety of information here!

I cloth diaper my daughter so I will start with a general post about that and hopefully add some more detailed information later.

Thanks for checking me out - please send your friends and ask me any questions you might have!