Monday, March 12, 2012

Perpetual Pinners - Week 5

Here we are again...Monday, Monday, Monday! No, I'm not that excited about Monday. I hate Mondays. Yes, it gets me one day closer to the weekend, but it's so hard to get back into the groove sometimes and daylight savings time doesn't help things, either!

One of my favorite movies is "Up!"
This little boy is adorable!
Owls are so "in" right now!
Isn't this cake the sweetest?!
I've been looking for some DIY holiday crafts
& this looks perfect for Easter!
Rag's a great stash buster &
looks great on the front door.

If you do a Perpetual Pinner's post on your blog, please link up below! Also, take a minute to follow me on Pinterest (button to the left). If you want to participate in the blog hop, don't forget to grab the pin from Midnight Mommy or Another Day in Paradise.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Never Say Never

Now that I have two kids, I've been wondering how I can get stuff done and still keep everyone happy. The thought of babywearing crossed my mind but I didn't know anything about it. You know that old saying, "Never say never"? Well I used to say I'd never cloth diaper and I also said I'd never wear my baby around. We're now cloth diapering and loving it so how about the babywearing?

Well, I dropped Kybug off at the babysitter's a few weeks ago and she was expecting a visitor. To make things easy, she pulled out her wrap, tied it like magic, and slipped little Kybug into it. Kybug nuzzled right into the wrap, went to sleep in no time, and the babysitter had two free hands to do whatever she needed to do. I was intrigued. I honestly didn't think it would be that easy and safe for the baby but after seeing it in action, I knew it would make my life easier.

First time using the Moby.

I waited a day and the next evening I was sitting at work and decided to order myself a Moby wrap for Kybug and myself. If you've never shopped at or any of their other family sites, you have to check it out. My favorite thing about this family of online stores is that I can place an order before 6 p.m., Monday-Friday, and my order is delivered the next day! If you're like me, and you hate waiting for something you've ordered online, this is probably music to your ears! Anyway...I just missed the 6 p.m. cut-off on Friday and my order finally got here Monday just as we were about to walk out the door for our son's doctor's appointment that is a good 80 miles from where we live. I told my husband he had to give me a few minutes to figure out how to put the wrap on (I had watched a YouTube video so I had a pretty good idea) so I could take it with us. The Moby wrap was so easy to use! I wrapped it and pulled it and tucked the ends a time or two and slipped Kybug down into it (this part could use a little practice) and to my surprise, she was asleep in less than 5 minutes! 

Now, I don't recommend getting your little one all cozy in the wrap just to take them out and put them in a carseat but I had to know how to use it. Turned out that it was a good thing that I did a trial run and took the wrap with us because no sooner did the doctor come into the room to see our son, Kybug started fussing. I put my Moby on, slipped her into it and she was out like a light! My Moby is magic! Okay, not really. I know she loves it because it snuggles her in close and she goes right to sleep. I also love it because it keeps her close and I feel like it's great way to bond with her.

Enjoying a pretty day outside
with the kiddos.
I've only used the Moby a few times so far but those few times are enough to have me sold on babywearing. Not only is it comforting to Kybug but I'll be able to get stuff done, all while staying close with my baby. And having two free hands while still being able to keep her close is a huge plus!

Do you babywear? What's your favorite wrap or sling?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Waiting Game

I'm waiting for some "fluffy mail" to get here that I ordered last week. It says it's out for delivery but I feel like its never going to get here! My husband thinks I have a problem. Maybe I do but it's too soon to tell. ;)

Monday, March 5, 2012

Perpetual Pinners - Week 4

It's Monday again but at least we have our Perpetual Pinners blog post to look forward to! Seriously, if you aren't on Pinterest...join! So many awesome ideas and recipes. My husband told me last night that I have a "problem" but when most of the meals I cook come from Pinterest and he tells me the recipe is a keeper and my son eats it without complaining, I think it's a good problem to have!

Do you remember trying on your Mom's heels when you were little?
I expected to see my son in this picture!
Bumgenius 4.0 in Lovelace. I love this print!
Doesn't this Pumpkin Lust Cake look wonderful? The only baking that's
required is for the pecan crust. Downfall? It uses Pumpkin Spice pudding
that is seasonal...but you can buy it on Amazon!
If you do a Perpetual Pinner's post on your blog, please link up below! Also, take a minute to follow me on Pinterest (button to the left). If you want to participate in the blog hop, don't forget to grab the pin from Midnight Mommy or Another Day in Paradise.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Perpetual Pinners (2/27)

I'm happy to be joining in on a fun, weekly blog hop sponsored by Midnight Mommy and Another Day in Paradise. Every Monday, each participating blog will be posting some of their favorite pins of the week from Pinterest. If you aren't on Pinterest and want to join, comment below with your email address and I'll send you an invite.

Mama's Meatloaf (this shows meatloaf "cupcakes" but I
made the
actual loaf for lunch on Sunday and it's the best meatloaf I've tasted!)

Just for laughs...

This is one of my favorite sayings from the movie,
"The Help".
Mae Mobley is the sweetest little girl and I
want my kids to know, "You is kind. You is smart. You is important."

This is such an awesome idea.

Some fluffy goodness hanging in the sun.
I'm ready for spring so we can hang ours out!

Now head on over to Pinterest and get pinning! If you're participating in the blog hop, add the link to your newest post below. Also, take a minute and follow me on Pinterest (button on the left side of my blog) and leave a comment below letting me know you're a new follower. And if you decide to participate in the blog hop, grab the pin from Midnight Mommy or Another Day in Paradise.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Bubbz 2.0 One Size Pocket Diapers Review

I really love our Bubbz 2.0 One Size Pocket Diapers. For us, they make cloth diapering so easy. My major concern with cloth diapering was how hard it would be to put the diaper on our daughter. With disposables, all you have to do is slide the diaper under the baby's butt and fasten the tabs. I didn't want to have to deal with pins and rubber pants...that just seemed like too much of a hassle to me.

One of the snaps snapped to
show how the rise adjusts.
The Bubbz diaper has 2 rows of snaps at the waist with an additional hip snap that keeps the tabs in place. The snaps are easy to fasten and very secure. Our daughter was almost 13 pounds at her last doctor's visit and these diapers fit her nicely. We're still on the first setting so she has plenty of room to grow.

Another great feature of the Bubbz diapers are the three rows of snaps that allow you to adjust the rise of the baby's diaper. As your baby gets taller, the diaper gets taller and you have a great fit whether your little one is 2 months old or 2 years old.

If you've never seen a pocket diaper before, I hope this next picture gives you a better idea of how the inside looks. The Bubbz 2.0 is lined with an extra soft microfleece lining and has double gussets at the leg openings to help protect your baby from leaks. At either end of the diaper is an opening that creates your pocket. The two openings also make it extra easy to put your inserts back in your diapers and get them flat. This diaper features a snap-in insert which is one of my favorite features of the Bubbz 2.0. I've never had a problem with the inserts shifting in the few diapers I have without the snap-in insert, but it gives me a little extra peace of mind.

Also, these diapers wash up beautifully. I know I've only been using cloth for about three weeks but cloth diapers get washed a lot and these still look brand new! I've had stains in the microfleece lining but all it took was a soak to get the lining a bright white again.

I couldn't be happier with our Bubbz 2.0 One Size Pocket Diapers!

**This is not a paid post. The opinions in this post are mine.**

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Rockin' Green Giveaway

Contemplating Cloth is currently hosting a giveaway for a bag of Rockin' Green here. The winner chooses the formula and the scent. Hurry up and enter because the giveaway ends on 2/28/2012!

Rockin' Green

"Rockin’ Green is an award-winning manufacturer of eco-friendly cleaning products designed to make cleaning easier and greener. Most well-known for their clean-rinsing laundry detergent formulated for use on all fabrics and especially useful on cloth diapers, Rockin’ Green produces detergents for hard, soft and normal water conditions (known as Hard, Soft and Classic Rock varieties).

Rockin’ Green also carries Funk Rock, a first-of-its kind natural ammonia bouncer, and Melody, an odor-neutralizer and air freshener home spray. With the exception of Funk Rock, all products come in seven natural scents, such as Mighty Mighty Marshmallow, Earth Wind & Orchids, Rage Against the Raspberry, and Bare Naked Babies (unscented)."

After cloth diapering for 3 weeks, some of our diapers were starting to get a funky smell to them. I've been washing them religiously every 1-3 days so I don't know what I could have been doing wrong but I couldn't take the smell much longer. I did some research and after reading mixed reviews on Rockin' Green, I thought it might be worth a try so I contacted the company to find out which formula would be best and they were gracious enough to send me a couple samples.

Yesterday was laundry day for the diapers so I did what I had been doing for the past few weeks and checked the mail after I threw them in the wash. Surprisingly, the samples of Rockin' Green were in the mail after just being mailed out on Thursday! I was itching to try it but decided I'd wait until it was time to do another load of diapers. Well, when the diapers were done in the wash (using my regular routine) I did the sniff test and they did. not. pass. That's when I decided it was time to "rock a soak" to try to get rid of the smell and the build-up that was causing the smell.

I filled the tub with warm water and added 2 tbsp. of Rockin' Green Hard Rock and put the diapers and liners in. I let them soak for about an hour and a half, swishing them around every half hour, and then I squeezed a little bit of water out (not all of it but enough that I was able to carry the basket back to the laundry room in our building without straining) and ran two full cycles in the washer. When I took them out of the washer there was no smell. I knew the real test would be smelling them when they came out of the dryer. The "barnyard" smell used to hit me in the face when I'd open the dryer. I was so relieved when I opened the dryer and I wasn't hit with that offensive smell. When I was putting the liners back in the diapers, I did notice a couple of them still had a very slight odor but unless you have the diaper up to your face smelling it, you don't notice it. I'm sure if I rock another soak, maybe for an hour or two longer, the smell will be completely gone.

I'm sure you might be wondering what the cost is like for a bag of Rockin' Green. Depending on which formula you get, Rockin' Green costs between $14.95-$15.95 and you can get at least 45 loads from one bag. They also have a magnetic laundry scoop that is designed to conveniently stick to the side of your washing machine. I plan on continuing to use Rockin' Green and I'll do another post in a few weeks to let you know how I like it after using it for an extended period of time.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Not the cloth diapers your Momma used to use...

Have you seen all of the cloth diapers that are on the market now? They're nothing like the cloth diapers that your Momma used to use! It used to be that when I heard "cloth diapers", I'd think of the "two p's": pins and plastic pants. It just seemed like too much of a hassle if you ask me and I really didn't trust myself with a sharp pin around my newborn at 3 o'clock in the morning when I can barely keep my eyes open! Not to mention that my son started taking things apart from about 9 months+. The last thing he needed in his hands was a sharp diaper pin!

The first time I saw a pocket diaper, I couldn't believe my eyes. The way you put them on is along the same lines of a disposable. The difference? Instead of tabs that stick to the diapers, the diaper I saw used snaps. I will admit that looking at some pocket diapers can be a little overwhelming at first with all of the snaps that are on there but I promise you, they are so. easy. to. use. 

One of my favorite Bubbz patterns,
Super Starz.
 The 3 rows of snaps allow
you to adjust the rise of the diaper and
there are more snaps across the top that
allow you to adjust the waist size.
I got my cloth diapers from two different places. The first store I ordered from was Bubbz Diapers. Their diapers are fleece lined and have a snap-in insert. They are also double gusseted which is great because it adds a little extra protection from leaks. The Bubbz were $19.99 a piece when I ordered them but the owner offered a package deal where I got a discount off the regular price. Most of my cloth diapers stash is Bubbz. The absorbency of these diapers is awesome. My daughter is a heavy wetter and the only time we've had a leak was when she slept 7 hours one night without waking up and that was no fault of the diaper (I'm also not going to complain about it because we never got 7 hours of sleep from our son when he was two months old...try 9 or 10 months!). I know the leak would have been much worse had she been in disposables. For a better idea of what these diapers look like and an explanation of how they're designed to provide the best protection from leaks, click here.

The second shop I ordered from was Kebbie's Diaper Bag. They offer a great selection of cloth diapers at a great price. I got a couple of their single gusset and a couple double gusset diapers. Depending on which diaper you order, they either have a suedecloth or a fleece lining and come with a bamboo and microfleece insert. The inserts don't snap in but I really haven't had any problem with them moving around. The diapers from KDB are also very absorbent. I only have a few of these ones but they have been put to the test between blowouts and our heavy wetter and they have done great! KDB also works with another work at home mom (WAHM) and offers Scarlet's Hiney Honey which is a cloth diaper friendly rash cream as well as Scarlet's Hiney Honey Wipes Solution Cubes.

The owner of these shops is amazing. She answered all my questions before my purchase and has answered questions I've had since then such as how to wash them and how to get stains out. We're almost two weeks into cloth diapering and we love it. What's even better is that we aren't throwing money away every time we change a diaper, we have great protection against leaks, and we don't have to worry about those crunchy plastic pants or sticking our daughter with a diaper pin. Just snap them on and go!

**This was not a paid post. The opinions above are my own. Since I wrote this post, some things have changed at Kebbie's Diaper Bag. They now carry the Bubbz diapers and are currently working on re-designing their shop.**

Happy Day of Love!

Happy Day of Love!

I hope your day was full of love and you made some wonderful memories. I woke up to the most beautiful smile from my baby girl while hubby took our son to his Valentine's Day party at his daycare and let me sleep in a little. Who would've ever thought that sleep would be the way to my heart?!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Why so different this time?

Formula. Disposable Diapers. Disposable Wipes.

Why did I decide to do things differently this time? Maybe I could attribute it to being more mature this time and keeping an open mind about things or maybe it's the fact that I was better informed. Maybe it's because our living arrangements are a lot better and we can make decisions without someone standing over our shoulder. Or maybe it's just because we were better informed.

When I had our son my husband had just completed 4 years with the Army and we lived with my parents for the first 6 months of his life. I tried to breastfeed with him but he wasn't getting the hang of it and looking back on it, I guess I just didn't have enough patience. He breastfed for the first 6 weeks and even though I had been pumping, I gave up on it, and we switched to formula. At the time it just seemed easier. I also didn't like breastfeeding with other people around. I know it's a natural thing and that's what our bodies are supposed to do, but I just didn't feel comfortable.

When our son was in diapers, I remember the cost of disposable diapers was a burden at many times but we didn't want to have to worry about cloth diapers so we paid the price. My Mom used cloth diapers on me and she was hoping we'd use them. We did use them... for burp cloths. I also couldn't stand the thought of dealing with the poop in a cloth diaper. I wish I'd kept a log of how much we spent on diapers over the 3 years our son was in them but then again, I'd probably make myself sick if I knew. And with the disposable diapers came the disposable wipes. They just seemed to go hand-in-hand. Who knows how many wipes we went through in those 3 years!

Breastfeeding. Cloth Diapering. Reusable Wipes.

I knew when I was pregnant with our daughter that I wanted to breastfeed her or at least try to. My number one reason was because it's healthier for her and as I later found out from friends, it's also healthier for me. Yes, I said it's healthier for me as well. Click here to read about the benefits of breastfeeding ("bf'ing" from here on out) for you and your infant from the American Academy of Pediatrics. I always knew bf'ing was beneficial for the baby but I had no idea that it can decrease the risk of breast & ovarian cancer in mothers as well as a number of other benefits.

Am I exclusively bf'ing? No. Why? Well, I wasn't producing enough at milk at first. I continued bf'ing her but we had to supplement with formula. When she was 6 weeks old she came down with RSV and started having trouble breathing. She got to the point where she couldn't even take a bottle so the doctor told me to "nurse" her through it. Then we ended up in the hospital where she had to be on oxygen and get breathing treatments every 4 hours. Needless to say that after 10 days of bf'ing, my milk supply was up. I'm back to work now and I'm still bf'ing as much as I can. I take one break at work where I pump and when I go home, I bf when she needs to eat until it's time for me to go back to work the next day. When I'm there she bf's and when I'm at work, she takes what I've been able to pump and when that's gone she takes formula.

I have to be completely honest with you, though. I'm still not the most comfortable bf'ing around other people. Like I said, I know it's a completely natural thing but I just don't like doing in front of people. Am I going to take my daughter to the bathroom to eat? No way! But I do make sure I either cover up really good or I try to go to another room. At home it's not a big deal to me. My husband's seen all there is to see and my son knows that's how his sister eats when I'm home. We were visiting family last night and my husband asked if I wanted him to mix her a bottle and I told him that there's no point in mixing her one when I have two attached to my chest so I just went to another room. Is bf'ing for everyone? No. Is it for me & my daughter? Absolutely.

Why did I do a complete 180 on the diapers? To be honest, we used disposables on her for the first 2 months. When I was pregnant I was buying diapers so the cost didn't hit us in the face when we had her. I had a stock on hand. Well, one of our friends started to babysit our little beauty for us and she cloth diapers. In fact, she has her own cloth diaper shop online. (Check her out here & she's also on Facebook here) Well, she posted a video of her 18 month old daughter doing the cloth diaper laundry and I jokingly said that I expected for her to have my daughter trained by the end of the week. That's when she told me that she had secretly been cloth diapering little Kybug behind my back. I had no problem with that at all! I knew she cloth diapered her little one and I kind of thought that she might use them on Kybug when she had her so it wasn't a big deal to me. In fact, that made me want to know more.

Have you seen the cloth diapers that are out there now?! They are amaaaaaaaaazing! Nothing at all like the diapers our Mommas used to use! In fact, they're designed a lot like disposables except they fit from 7-35 pounds. That's right... one diaper will fit from the time your child is 7 pounds all the way up to 35 pounds! To be completely honest, I had thought about using these cloth diapers on our daughter but we live in an apartment and don't have a washer & dryer so I didn't think there was any way I would be able to keep up with it.

Once I saw these diapers in action (and saw how adorable they were on Kybug), I was sold. I now have 34 cloth diapers in my stash (that beautiful bunch of fluff to the right) with another 6 on the way. And I keep looking for more to add to it! I sold the stock of disposables I had on hand (almost 400 diapers) and made the switch. You're probably wondering how the price differs between cloth and disposables. The stash you see to the right was under $450. That's a big chunk of money for my family but it's an investment. If you think about the amount of money you spend on disposables over a two and a half to three year period, these diapers only cost me a fraction of that!

I haven't been cloth diapering for very long but I love it. In my opinion, it's even easier than disposables. And they aren't hard to wash at all! I have a diaper pail that I throw them in when they're dirty and I have to take an hour and a half to wash them twice a week. The easiest thing for me is to go to the laundromat and do it there. I was done in a little over an hour when I did it the other day and it gets me out of the apartment for a little bit even if it is to do laundry! (F.Y.I... breastfed babies' poop is water soluble so it washes right out! No rinsing or soaking the diapers before they're washed!)

Why cloth wipes? If I'm cloth diapering, why not use cloth wipes, too? Not to mention that it's a perfectly good excuse to blow the dust off the sewing machine! It was so easy to make my own wipes. I just took a regular wipe and used it as a template to make my own. I've only made a dozen so far but I see a trip to the fabric store in the near future! And when Kybug fills up one of her diapers, I can use the cloth wipes, put it in the diaper, throw it all in the diaper pail, and wash everything together. So easy! Between you and me, we still have a giant stash of wipes. My dad buys them every time he sees them on sale. We'll have enough to last us a few years now that we're using the cloth wipes but once Kybug starts eating solids, we'll need them when we're out and about or in the car. They're great for sticky messes!

You don't do the "crunchy" thing?

So you don't do the "crunchy" thing, huh? Am I going to judge you for that? Heck no! If you ask me why I breastfeed, I'll tell you. I also know that it's not for everyone. I know that not all babies take to it and that some people just aren't comfortable with it. That's your choice. You have to do what works for you and your baby. For Kybug and I, it works. For my son & I, it didn't.

You don't cloth diaper and use cloth wipes? That's not for everyone, either. It wasn't for me with my son. Being a first-time Mom was overwhelming to me at that time and it didn't "fit" for us. Maybe had I known about the cloth diapers we're using now, I would've tried it but I didn't. What we did with him worked and what we're doing now with our daughter is working. If you ask me what I like about cloth diapering, I'll tell you. If you want to know more about the diapers I use, I'll pull one out of the diaper bag and show you. In fact, I would like to give you a rundown of our diapers on here one day. I've heard it before but now I'm experiencing it...cloth diapering really is an addiction (especially with all the adorable prints available now)!