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Posts Tagged ‘Kids’

Child’s Play

Judah smiling“The Soul is healed by being with Children”

-Fyodor Dostoyevsky

This is so true!  I think it is so easy as parents to get caught up in being mom and dad and doing parental things that you can forget to stop and enjoy the things your kids enjoy.  I know that I daily have to remind myself that my “to-do list” is not as important as stopping everything and playing with my son.  It takes effort!  But I think as parents we need to learn to PLAY more.  Our kids won’t remember all the work we did but they will remember the games we played, the adventures we took and the times we all laughed so hard our bellies hurt.

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cloth-diapers-lineThanks to some new mom friends that cloth diaper I have been able to try out different types of diapers. The cloth diapering world can be very overwhelming to a newbie like myself, so this has made deciding what kind of diapers I like best much easier.  This past week I tried out AIOs (all in ones), pockets, fitted, contour, sized and one size fits all, velcro or snaps – whew, thats a mouth full just to write, let alone try.  I really want a diapering system that easy.  Being new to cding (lingo for cloth diapering) I want something that resembles the ease of disposables without being disposable, especially for my hubby’s sake.  I also want something that I can use with multiple kids.  So with much trying and thinking, these are my thoughts…

AIO DiaperAll in Ones: These are my favorite!  Being closest to disposables they are so easy.  The diaper is literally all in one.  No stuffing of the inserts.  You can add a booster insert if you want more absorbency.  The outside of the diaper is waterproof. They are easy to dry too – I hung mine outside and they were dry in a little over an hour.

Pocket DiaperPocket: These are my 2nd favorite!  The only difference from the AIOs is that you have to stuff the inserts which requires a bit more work.  You can also add more booster inserts for added absorbency.  The outside of these are also waterproof.  These are also quick to dry.  You can dry the shell and insert separately which makes the drying time even faster than the AIOs.

Fitted DiaperFitted: The fitted diapers require a waterproof cover because they are not waterproof.  They are cotton so when the insert gets really wet you can feel it.  So to prevent it from seeping through to clothes you need a waterproof cover.  I didn’t like that it needed a cover.  It’s just too hot to have my little guy wearing a cotton diaper with inserts plus a waterproof cover.  They dry quickly too because you can separate the insert from the diaper.

Contour DiaperContours: Contours are just that:  contoured to fit the bottom.  They are slim fitting because of the shape.  These are not waterproof and require a cover.  You have to do 2 steps to put this diaper on:  first the contour then the cover.  Which for me was not ideal.  It’s extra work and Judah is a squirmer.

SizedSized: These come in the above styles but describe the fact that they are sized – S, M, L.  Before trying the diapers out I thought I would really love one-size dipes but now I really like the sized diapers.  The reason being is that they are more trim fitting.  They don’t look bulky and fit better under clothes.  The only down side to this is that it is recommended to have a diaper stash of 20-25 diapers so that you don’t have to wash every other day but only twice a week.  And if you get sized diapers then you need 20-25 diapers of each size – S, M, L. That means more money invested in the diapers.  A pro is that because they are sized as the child grows you only use that size for a while which will mean less use and less washing which will keep the diapers in better condition.

snapsOne-Size: These are great because you can use the diaper from 8lbs. until potty trained.  Your diaper stash doesn’t have to be as extensive which means less money spent.  They are a bit more bulky and not as trim fitting as the sized dipes.  So they will be bulky on newborn and infant but will fit nicely on an older baby or toddler.

Velcro DiaperVelcro: The diapers and covers (if needed) close with with snaps or velcro (aplix).  Most diapers have what are called laundry tabs on the inside of the diaper where you fold the velcro tabs over onto to keep the velcro from getting stuck to other diapers while in the wash.  The velcro is okay but I would think that it would begin to weaken after use, which is what I gathered from using used diapers.  Also, the velcro has to attach to velcro so that means the diapers have a line of velcro at the top front of the diaper.  On some of the brands this was issue because it rubbed against Judah’s tummy but on other brands they positioned it correctly and it didn’t bother him.  Because it’s velcro Judah was able to pull at it.  He isn’t quite strong enough to pull it open but the pulling was enough to create a slight detachment.  So I can only imagine that as he gets older he could rip his diaper right off.  Some mom’s say this is an issue and others say it’s not – it depends on the kid.

Snap DiapersSnaps: I liked the snaps best.  It takes a bit more work for you when putting on the diaper especially if you’re kiddo is moving around.  But they can’t be unsnapped as easily, therefore preventing the diaper from being taken off.  Also, they don’t get stuck on anything else in the washer…preserving not only the diaper closure but also other diapers in the same wash load.

In the end…I still really like cloth diapers and am going to make the switch soon enough.  I think for us we will be buying AIOs or pockets with snaps.  I may do a mix of one-size and sized (which for now will only be M or L).  There is a new diaper on the market called Grobaby (picture below).  It’s a one-sized AIO/pocket with a reusable shell.  It seems awesome so I will have to give that one a try.  Some other brands that I really liked are Bumgenius, Fuzzibunz, Pocket Change, Dream Eze.  For now the trial is and has been fun but I’m looking forward to owning my own stash of cloth diapers!!!

grobaby

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Happy 1st Father’s Day

To the best daddy for Judah!  We love you so!!!!!

Footprints

Judah & his feet

“Walk a little slower daddy,” said a child so small.  I’m following in your footsteps and I don’t want to fall.

Sometimes your steps are very fast, Sometimes they’re hard to see; So walk a little slower daddy, for you are leading me.

Someday when I’m all grown up you’re what I want to be; Then I will have a little child who’ll want to follow me.

And I would want to lead just right and know that I was true; So walk a little slower, Daddy, for I must follow you.”

Judah sucking daddy's ear

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A Story…

pippi Here is an excerpt from a book I’m reading…got me thinking.  What do you think?

In 1978, Astrid Lindgren received the German Book Trade Peace Prize for her literary contributions.  In acceptance, she told the following story.

Never Violence

When I was about twenty years old, I met an old pastor’s wife who told me that when she was young and had her first child, she didn’t believe in striking children, although spanking kids with a switch pulled from a tree was a standard punishment at the time.  But one day when her son was four or five, he did something that she felt warranted a spanking – the first in his life.  And she told him that he would have to go outside and find a switch for her to hit him with.  The boy was gone a long time.  And when he came back in, he was crying.  He said to her, “Mama, I couldn’t find a switch, but here’s a rock that you can throw at me.”  All of a sudden the mother understood how the situation felt from the child’s point of view:  that if my mother wants to hurt me, then it makes no difference what she does it with; she might as well do it with a stone.  The mother took the boy onto her lap and they both cried.  Then she laid the rock on a shelf in the kitchen to remind herself forever:  never violence.  Because violence begins in the nursery – one can raise children into violence.

Astrid Lindgren – Author of Pippi Longstocking

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Cloth Diaper Trial

cloth-diapers-line WooHoo!  I’m so excited!  I have been considering doing cloth diapers for the last 8 months but never felt sure what kind of diaper to get so I never went through with it.  I recently got involved in a mom’s group where some of the moms use cloth diapers and they generously agreed to let me borrow a few different brands and types to try out.

Why cloth?  I ask myself that a lot and get asked that a lot when I mention my interest in them.  I am drawn to cloth diapers for a few reasons:

1.  Economics

Cloth diapers are an investment upfront.  You can expect to pay anywhere from $300-$500 for a good supply.  But since we are trying to save money long-term I can’t justify spending $40-50 a month on diapers for roughly 3 years which adds up to about $2000.  Every time I change a diaper I see dollar signs.

2.  Environment

I try to do what I can to make a positive impact on the environment.  Not adding diapers that can take hundreds of years to decompose is just another way.

3.  Health

Judah had never gotten a diaper rash until about a month ago.  But the first one he did get was a big one.  The doctor even classified it as a yeast/ring worm infection.  No over the counter cream worked so we had to use a prescription, which worked wonders.  Now I am not blaming disposables but I have heard from reliable sources that cloth diapers cause little to no rashes. And because I don’t want to throw money away I also don’t want to change diapers every 2 hours.  Also, I just feel better knowing that all natural cloth fibers are touching my little man’s bum rather than a lot of synthetic materials.

That’s my reasoning.  The actual act of using them is something I haven’t done yet so we shall see!  

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"No"Our son Judah loves to put everything in his mouth.  While exploring and learning, everything he can grasp goes straight to his mouth.  Showing him new things or letting him play can be daunting because I’ll usually turn to see something I’d rather not have in his mouth, in his mouth!  I try to stay on top of things and give him plenty of things to play with that he can chew on but he’s only entertained for so long before he wants to crawl to something new and chew on it.

Recently, we were encouraged by some well-meaning loved ones to start telling Judah “No” every time he touches, picks up or attempts to chew something he shouldn’t.  “He needs to start hearing the word so he can know what is allowed and what isn’t.”  I always hear advice when it is given to me and I will take it into consideration and hubby and I will talk about it.  But when I heard this advice something in me just didn’t set right.  Judah is only 8mo. and is just starting to realize his capabilities and loves exploring his world and has no concept of the word “no” or any word for that matter- although he has just started shaking his head from side to side, which is really cute!  I just don’t want to start using the “No” word constantly.  Now, I don’t want my son getting hurt by chewing or touching something he shouldn’t but I am sure there are better ways to draw his attention away and show him what is allowed.  I know many kids start telling the parents “no” when they talk to them.  And I don’t want to speed up that time coming or make it worse by teaching him a word and concept so early on.  I also don’t want to lessen his curious nature because he equates learning and exploring with being told “no” to every little thing I think he shouldn’t be doing.

As I was reading Attached at the Heart, I came across some interesting info:  “The conscious parent meets the needs of the child by providing safety, support and structure for the child as he moves through each developmental stage.  He is attuned to the unique personality and temperament of his child and able to see what his child needs as he grows and changes.  He is educated about the developmental stages of children and is able to stay alert and flexible in interactions with him.  Positive discipline involves creating a positive home environment that not only allows but also encourages children to learn and explore.  It is critical that you learn as much as you can about child development.  Once you learn what the cognitive and behavioral expectations are for different ages and phases, it is much easier to be patient and respond appropriately to redirect and guide the child’s behavior.  Parents are instrumental in helping their children explore safely by seeing the world through their children’s eyes, modeling respect and empathy, and when appropriate, allowing children to experience natural consequences of their actions.  For example, when your baby is crawling around and decides to touch something you don’t want him to touch, recognize that he is fulfilling his need to explore and learn.  Quickly move the object or get his attention, then redirect him toward something else.  As he gets older, you can use words to explain what you want him to do rather than getting in the habit of saying “NO” or “Because I said so!”  Few of us would like anyone to talk to us that way.”

I learned a lot from this excerpt.  It’s so important for moms and dads to understand where their kids are at developmentally so we can have realistic expectations for them.  If we understand how our kids think and see things we might be more apt to approach them more proactively rather than reactively.  I want to foster my sons curiosity and help him safely discover his world and realize what he does and does not understand.  And I want to take the time needed to be proactive as a mom in efforts to practice positive discipline.  And this is just the beginning… 🙂

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I’m still reading Attached at the Heart and a few quotes stuck out to me.  Let me share.

“Intuitive, conscious, attached parenting requires something that none of us learns on the playground, in the classroom or on the job:  Grace!”

“See your children with your heart not with your eyes.”

Parenting intentionally requires much grace because you intentionally make the effort to daily love, enjoy, raise, and understand your kids.  I don’t want to parent by chance.  It might be easier to just assume that I as the mom think that I know what Judah should and shouldn’t want.  Or just simply parent as I have seen done rather than by observing the benefits or lack thereof of a parenting style.  But I want to put a lot of thought and energy into being a mom.  I don’t want to do what seems normal culturally or even parent as I was parented.  I want to seek God’s best parenting from his Word and His best for Judah – after all He created Him and knows exactly what he needs.  

I want to see Judah from my heart not from my eyes.  I want love to be what drives me.  I want the bond that I have with my son to be the foremost thing to be protected as I make decisions.  

It is not always easy parenting intentionally.  Some days I just want to turn off and put myself first…unfortunately more than I’d like to admit.  But I don’t.  I press through the feelings of selfishness or the “I deserve…” and give of myself.  I try to understand Judah and his needs and wants.  Why he loves me so much and wants me to hold him.  Why he would prefer to play with me instead of some plastic toy.  Why no matter where I may put him so I can fold clothes he always crawls right back over to me.  These things may seem an inconvenience but I am humbled by how much he loves me and it makes my love for him grow even more.  So I stop what I am doing and hold him, nurse him, sing to him, play with him and make him laugh.  That’s what’s really important.  I choose to parent!

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