Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Cloth Diapers 101

I continue to get a lot of questions about cloth diapering regarding my personal experience and general questions.  I recently wrote a long email to someone today and thought I would share much of it here too.   If you want to read my first post about the specific diapers I use click here. Hope it helps those that are new to cloth diapering and want something easier to understand.  It's just one Mama's method and explanation:

It can be confusing!  The best advice anyone gave me were to invest in just a few different types before diving in and buying all of one type or brand.  For example—I bought lots of newborn sized diapers that were homemade from someone.  They fit well but leaked like crazy and did not accommodate the little “stump” of the cord that hung on for weeks with a newborn.  When we have another newborn we'll do disposables in the early days so they accomodate the cord stump and wait until the snap diapers fit best (which I found was around 10lbs).

Let's back up...

There are basically three types of diapers…

The cheapest diapers in diaper lingo are called “Pre-folds”… the kind your mama used to use with pins (or the kind you use as burp cloths).  They usually are worn with reusable covers.  I never used that kind because I figured it wasn't easy enough for me and that the hubby would not use them.

I tried the all-in-ones which are basically an outer cover and some kind of absorbent insert that is attached so you don't "stuff" any inserts in teh diapers-- its all one piece.  I tried one like this (Bumpkins) and liked it but still didn’t find it absorbent enough and also you have to buy them in sizes so they don't grow with your kid... therefore you have to buy more from small to large.  These are a lot more than prefolds for the convenience and are usually about the same price as Pocket diapers.

The ones I use are “pocket diapers”… these can go for crazy amount for the name brand but I found the KaWaii are equivalent enough to Fuzzibuns or some of the others like it.  I also like that it adjusts with snaps so it grows with your child (unlike the all in ones) which you buy in different sizes.  They are pocket because they have a pocket where you stuff the inserts in (I just use one but I know some people add two inserts if their baby is a “heavy wetter.”  I also just stuff them one at a time when I change his diaper… it saves doing the whole basket of diapers at once.  But you can do it either way.

Note:  We still do disposables at night most nights so it absorbs the most and wicks away from his skin (whatever helps us all sleep the longest!)  and we use them with sitters just so its easier for them.  When I haven't I end up with dirty diapers back in the clean basket and parts and pieces thrown away. 

Here is the inside and a photo of the outside...

 We never did the diaper sprayer… another thing that I decided did not sound fun!  We use disposable liners—they add cost but I wash the ones that were just peed on and use a few times.  That way when he poos, we just throw away that part… the diaper avoids yuckiness and needing rinsing and we can just put it in the diaper pail without dunking in the toilet or spraying off.

Must Haves:

Cloth Diapers
Diaper Pail (Trashcan with a flip up lid)
Wet Bag  (Sized to fit your trash can)


Optional but Recommended:

A second wet bag for when the other is in the wash
Cloth Diaper Disposable Liners
Small wet bag to stash in the diaper bag (Plastic bags work too)

I bought almost all my diapers for $8 and under and have about 15 in regular rotation now which means I do laundry every 2-3 days.  Hubs has done lots of calcs and we feel that even using a disposable at night, we've saved lots of mulah!

Please ask any questions I may have left out or assumed and I will answer them or update the post.  Good look!  It's pretty simple once you get your system down and figure out what works for you!

Toddler Swimming Lessons- ISR Day 1

This weeks has started as a week of "torture" for my son (and who am I kidding-- for me too!)... we signed him up for swimming classes.  But these aren't just any swim lessons... Mama is not in the water and he gets one-on-one instruction from his teacher for 10 minutes a day, EVERY day for 4-6 weeks until he knows how to swim, float, swim... its called ISR--  Infant Swimming Resource's Self-Rescue program http://www.infantswim.com/.   It's for kids 6 month to 6 years.

It's not cheap, requires a serious time commitment every day and it's tough to watch your baby and in the case of my kiddo-- yelling/crying for his Mommy while kinda being freaked out by the whole experience. 

Google ISR Swimming on You Tube and you will be amazing at the tiny kids that learn how to swim.  More importantly-- you can read stories for kids who took the class and has some kind of run-in with a pool or water and were able to save themselves because of what they learned in the class. 

So just like letting your kids get bumps and scrapes as they learn to crawl or walk or disciplining kids when it's not fun but what they need... that's why we're taking this class... for the end goal of having a kid who could live if he ended up in water and a kid that will eventually enjoy swimming (like my niece and nephew who are complete fish in the water and took the classes when they were young).

Here is a 20 month old after completing the class to give you an idea of what they learn and what someone my kiddo's age can do at the end...


THey are super strict in watching what your kid eats all day during the 4-6 weeks and you have to log their foods, pees, and poos, and their sleep.  That is also the reason lessons are just 10 minutes... they do as much as possible to limit potential injuries. 

One day 1-- he just did wall work-- where he was put a little away from the wall and reach out to grab it from multiple angles (no underwater yet).  He actually did really well with that-- he just cried for me the whole time-- and I only got a little teary twice while watching it.  : )  Thankfully my sister-in-law was there to support both of us.

I'll keep you posted on how it progresses and maybe post our own video at the end.

Monday, May 21, 2012

21 weeks and such

While I'm late in posting (shocker!) I actually took my 21 week belly bump photo on the correct day.  Yeah, that's a shocker too!

Symptoms:  So far so good still!  Yeah!  Major progress has been I am now back to drinking water first thing in the morning and I can swallow like all 10 of my vitamins in one giant fistful again!

Exercise:  Running 3x a week-- with the shortest run being 4 miles.  So far I'm keeping pace and having minimal side effects (I even haven't had the constant urge like I need to pee on every run!)  I also talked hubs into lacing up his running shoes Sunday and we ran 63 minutes together while pushing the tyke in the jogging stroller!  It was HOT too!

Thoughts:  I had my first "birth the baby" dream.  True to pre-baby dreams it was definitely unconventional.  I wasn;t full term and was trying to push out the baby-- this was all while I had ZERO pain and tried to babysit my son between trying to push and trying to figure out where my husband was.  It was an odd dream but it also made me really ready to meet this little guy!

I just completed a 21 month series with a great group of ladies through my church.  We had out "graduation" and someone asked the two prego ladies to take a bump picture together... so since I rarely let my head be in blog photos... here goes below... I am on the right at 21 weeks and the beautiful lady on the left is due a month after me with her third kiddo.

Can I just brag that I found that dress an hour before I had to get ready for the night on a trip to Target.  It was only $25 bucks and isn't a maternity dress so I think I can wear it in the future too!  Score!  We did not coordinate our dresses, we're just both fans of black and white!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Lil Bit of Everything and 20 week Update

On Saturday the fam (minus my hubs : ( and I hit up an informal 5k fundraiser for an organization that I recently designed a small building for... Barren Heights and whom my mom and stepdad volunteer with.  It's a cool organization that helps families who have a child with a disability take a free vacations at their camp while volunteers assist in meals and fun with their kids.

I was pleased with our 5k time... we averaged 8:45/mile all while switching who pushed the munchkin.  He got a huge kick out of the balloons and got his favorite tool... a hammer... painted on his face... It was fun!

20 weeks:
Well... the official belly pic at 20 weeks (a few days late) is deceiving as usual... I must look thinner from the side... ha ha!  I certainly have a belly!

Total Weight Gain: About 8.5 lbs

Symptoms:  Feeling better still, no sickies, no cravings and I can drink water and take pills without gagging (mostly)  : )  I'm sleeping well and will enjoy the sleep I can get until it gets hot and I get more prego!

Some random one's for you:
I'm wondering what it will be like to balance two kids?  Will it be the same MAJOR adjustment as one was? 

I'm also wondering what I should buy two of?  I know that's kind of dumb but when I change N's diaper I still use the changing table... can they share one or will I need two?  What else?

Will my boys be sporty?  If so, will I actually enjoy spending time watching sports?

Will I feel the urge to have more kids or feel done after this one?  Will Hubby and I be on the same page regardless of which direction it is?

Exercise:  Still running but no long run due to the 5k event over the weekend.

Happy Monday!  I make no promises but will hopefully be back around Thursday when I'm 21 weeks since this one is late again!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

It's a...

Looks like I get to continue a life of worms and hammers and trucks... we're having another boy!  I always thought I'd be a Momm of two boys.  I guess I was on to something.  While I am not a sports fan, I enjoy all the adventures that comes with the typical life of a boy! 

I think we have a first name picked out but we won't tell our family/friends until birth.  The reason we do that is to avoid the... "oh, I don't like the name Sally" or "I once knew a Sally who was so mean..."  People keep these things to themselves when the baby is in front of them but somehow when it's still in your belly they think it's okay to say.  I've heard it too many times... so we will keep it under wraps again.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Finally... A Post with Photos!

Unless you are McLightning and have perfect form, a runner can usually get a kick out of their official race photos posted several days after a race.

We had just run up the bridge and I had just finished a Camelbak drink of water in this shot... at least you can't see both feet because I usually run with both of them on the ground at the same time.  : )  I do think the bridge angle is pretty darn neat though!

He're my grand finish... I thought I was busting it at the finish with good form only to see this photo and realize I was still my slouchy self and looking kinda pooped.

Finally here is my stepdad and me after we were reuinted at the finish.  I do look pretty pumped up here, showing off the metal and he looks drained and was probably wondering why I stopped to let the guy take this one.

So-- for my lack of race photos... here are a few  to keep you coming back. 

Sunday, May 6, 2012

13.1 + 3 = Race Day Fun

Today was my second half marathon while pregnant.  With kiddo boy, I was 23 weeks pregnant running Nashville and this go round I am just shy of 20 weeks running Cincinnati.   To recap my first prego race go here.  I ran a whole 5 minutes faster this race and let me tell you-- from mile 5 1/2-10 it was pretty much a solid hill. It was also significantly warmer than any weather we had trained in.  Because of that I was especially happy with my time of 2:13:38. 

I have ZERO personal race photos.  Mostly because my hubby now has a toddle to corral while on the sidelines and I am not nice enough to add the weight of a phone/camera to my run!  I got to see the fam at mile 3 and the finish.

This course was one giant hill for miles and miles as evidenced by the marathon elevation graph (the half was the same course until the end)

So yeah-- giant uphills for 3ish miles = mega downhill too.  And man did it make this pregnant Mama have to pee from mile 9 until I stopped at 13.1!!  At mile 9 I started counted down the miles left until I got to see my family... only 4 more miles, 3 more miles... 2...

Unfortunately though at mile 7 I lost my stepdad who was running with me.  He was a step behind me on the hill but then all of a sudden he was gone.  I slowed up for a mile hoping to see him or that he would catch up but I never saw him-- then I was worried he passed me and I didn't know it... so I decided I was running the second half of the race just baby and me.  Around 11 1/2 miles there is a part of the course that laps back against people further ahead or further back in the race.  As I looped, my stepdad spotted me (he was behind me) and yelled my name-- since I was less than a mile away from the finish I kept going but waited for him at the finish line. 

He finished in 2:18.  I felt bad we didn't get to run it all together!  Also, because we weren't together and it's easier to spot him in a crowd of runners (bald head, headband, etc) than it is to spot me-- my hubby, son and mom didn't see me go by and I didn't see them.  Boo.  Especially a boo since I was counting down to that moment and felt strong finishing.

I felt MUCH better afterwards than I did finishing the Nashville half when I was prgnant the first time.  That alone I take as a success!

All in all, it was a fun race and I would do it again.  Good crowd support, music along the course, LOTS of water stops (but I ran with the Camelbak) and an all around fun theme with the "Flying Pig" name.

EDIT:  Because our hotel was across the river we walked a mile and half to the start and a little more than that from the finish back to the hotel.  Hence-- 13.1 + 3.  Lots of miles on the ol legs!

Cincinnati Flying Pig Marathon

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Little bit of Stroller and Bump Update and Half Prep in One...

Thanks for the stroller comments.  I am so not any closer on a decision.   Though I have decided that running with 2 kids is going to be a low priority for the double stroller.  Hopefully when I run, I can go solo or just take one kid in the BOB while leaving the other at home.  Trips to the zoo, walking outside, the annual trips to family/fair type events are what I would like a double stroller for... SO... as much as I want to spend $500 on another stroller, I think that rules out the BOB double. 

I would like something fairly narrow, not heavy, able to attach an infant carseat and possibly jog-ready if needed.

If I had to pick just one today for those reasons, it would be this one:

InStep Safari Double Tandem Stroller (16-Inch, Blue)

It's the InStep Safari Double Tandem Stroller.  I like that it's not side to side and the kid in the back is not sitting under the one in the front.  And at around $250 its significantly less than similar models.  It only has 1 review on Amazon so I can't say it's a clear win or lose.  We'll see.  I have to tell myself, no reason to buy today.

We skipped right on over 18 weeks right into 19.  Hubs and I have yet to cross paths since about 7 this morning, so I will have to wait on inserting the 19 week bump.  He's 18 for your viewing pleasure:

Symptoms:  Finally enjoying SOME food again.  Not the usual range but now it's not a turnoff to eat at every meal.  I am still sick of cooking or thinking of meals-- but that may not be related to a bump anymore?  : )

Gender:  We get to find out one week from today!  I hope more than anything that we have a healthy baby at the 20 week checkup!

AND last but not least... Ran my last taper run today of 4 miles and Sunday is the big half marathon 13.1 race day!!!!