Monday, January 31, 2011

Unsupportive Friends and Family; Cloth Diapers

Personally, cloth diapering and going green have been a very positive experience. My friends and family were very supportive, and so far I have provided cloth diapers for at least 4 kids in my family, which I was absolutely ecstatic to do. One other mom with two on the way has also committed to using a diaper service for her babies after birth. I love sharing the love! One of the moms is only using cloth as a backup, but two other moms I know have now switched to cloth diapers.

My husband, in the beginning, wasn't as supportive as I would have liked. He didn't want me to invest in cloth diapers. Today, I am pretty sure he would be totally disappointed if I went back to using disposables. We haven't bought any disposable diapers in over a year.

When he wasn't being supportive, I just ignored him. I have the talent (or curse) of not really caring what other people think even if I respect their opinion. So, when my husband was upset over me "wasting" money on cloth I just did it anyway. But, I also have the luxury of having my own account so he really can't tell me what to buy!

People always suspect that those using cloth diapers are too poor to afford "real diapers". My dad asked me if I was having problems buying diapers when I told him I switched to cloth! If only they knew that the investment in cloth and wool that I have made really exceeds the amount I have saved by switching to cloth. Most often, money saving isn't the point of using cloth. Saving the environment is.

I am always curious when moms aren't being supported in their decision to use cloth. My husband is amazing. He washes all the diapers and hangs them out to sun when needed. I don't know if I could have gotten so far without his support. Does your spouse support your decision to use cloth diapers? If not, how do you deal with it?

Monday, January 24, 2011

Furniture Safety for Babies and Toddlers

I really think that furniture safety is something every parent should know about. I personally didn't think about it until I had #5, and then only because we brought huge bookshelves into our house. I suddenly realized that these shelves were totally dangerous. My husband went through our home and attached everything to the wall using hooks, screws, or safety latches as needed. I know you may worry about drilling holes in your furniture, but nothing is worth the cost of something falling on your child.

These tips can help you attach your furniture safely for the littlest members of your family. Also, don't forget about bedside tables and other smaller furnishings. They may not seem big, but can easily hurt a small child.

- Read the report from The US Consumer Product Safety Commission. You can find it here. There is some good information there on furniture safety for babies and toddlers.

- Don't store items that kids might want to grab, like TV remotes, on shelves that may tip. Always put your television on a very sturdy surface, and then keep it as far back as possible.

- Buy furniture latches. You can find them online at Here is an example of what to look for. If you are searching through Google, a search like "furniture strap" or "furniture safety baby" can help you find other products to choose from, but there are a lot on Amazon, too.

-Check your straps and safety latches often, especially after your child has pulled on the furniture being held by the strap. It is always recommended that you insert the safety strap into a stud to ensure the strap is being held securely. If you aren't sure how to find a stud on your own, then buy a stud finder at the hardware store. They are only a few dollars, and well worth it when installing furniture safety straps.

Safely installing straps on each piece of furniture in your home doesn't really take a long time, and it is relatively inexpensive.

Wow- What a Season!

Every winter we end up battling colds and coughs. My youngest daughter has allergies, so its a double battle with her. This year we have switched to mostly homeopathic medicines and guess what? No winter-long cough! For the past three or four years she has coughed all winter long, despite trips to the Dr. I don't feel comfortable giving them Clartin or other over the counter medicines on a daily basis, plus they made my son have a terrible stomach ache. So, no thanks to that.

We used natural honey and peppermint when we did have a cough. And lots of Four thieves oil. I added some 4 Thieves essential oil to a bottle of sweet almond oil and let them rub a dime sized drop on their chest before bed when the had a flu bug. It seemed to work, they were all 95% better the next morning. Of course, we did visit our doctor and I recommend everyone else do the same if you have symptoms of the flu.

I also use Four Thieves oil in my oil burner during the whole time they were sick, and neither me, my husband, or Little Wiggler got sick. I'm totally giving that to the Four Thieves, since I always get sick when the kids do.

What are your favorite homeopathic or natural remedies? I would love to know!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Zobha Contest for Yoga

There is a cool free yoga stuff giveaway here:

I personally love yoga, and I know a lot of other Moms do, too. They have some pretty cool stuff on the website, including clothing and accessories. Here is my list of faves from the site.

Top: The Grace V Tank in black and Moroccan blue.

I really like tops that have a V neckline.I also like a lot of their pants, especially the Harlem capris in black. They look perfect for yoga. I think the colors used on the top are very relaxing, and the pant and shirt combination is perfect for moving smoothly in yoga class.

I don't know if you have ever worn a regular tee and sweats when doing yoga, but trust me, sometimes your shirt ends up over your head! The top from Zobha is the perfect solution since it is tight enough to stay in place but also comfortable and stretchy enough for the fluid motions of yoga.

The contest also includes a hoodie, but I love the Lounge Wrap in black! Stylish enough to wear anywhere. I really am starting to like more feminine "girly" styles, which is kind of weird if you know me.

Zobha also has an awesome yoga bag, called the City Bag in pink and brown. Brown is defiitely my favorite color and I love it pair with bright colors like pink and aqua. A yoga bag is a must have when you are going to classes! I also have trouble keeping up with stuff, so a bag could help me get way more organized and ready to go.

They are also giving away a silk eye pillow filled with lavender. I don't know how much you love lavender, but let me tell you it is amazing! Real lavender is one of my favorite scents. If you haven't smelled the buds yourself then you don't know what you are missing. Zobha offers a silk eye pillow filled with lavender, definitely worth it if you want to relax. I also use lavender for helping my kids relax at bedtime! I know that a lavender eye pillow would be so relaxing to use, I would probably use it way more than necessary just because I love the scent so much.

These are all my favorite styles from Zobha, but they have lots of other yoga supplies, too! I am just getting started with yoga on a daily basis so I don't have all the gear yet. I would love to win the contest that Zobha is offering! All you need to do is make a blog post like this one and link back to the Zobha website with your favorite pieces from the site. They have some really cool styles, too, so you are going to find lots of things you love right away!

If I won I would definitely feel more comfortable in yoga. I totally love the colors from this company. Very modern and sleek, but also timeless enough to last for quite some time!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Five Steps to Weight Loss

Ready? You can lose weight with these five EASY steps. No dieting required.

Step One: Let your nine year old cook. Do you really need an explanation here?

Step Two: Cook stuff you always forget about, like pot roasts and casseroles, in the oven and simultaneously try to convince the three year old it's not OK to take his penis out inappropriately while breastfeeding a baby. There is almost a 100% guarantee that dinner will burn,and be inedible. If you do this often enough, weight loss is guaranteed.

Step Three: Take all the kids grocery shopping. By the time you leave the store you will have three boxes of crayons and some baking soda, but will be so anxious to leave before the baby has a meltdown over jelly beans that you forget to buy food. Serve ranch, ketchup and one box of mac and cheese for eight people that night.

Step Four: Skip dinner and go right to wine. After one glass, eat the baby's Gerber puffs you found under the high chair. Not only are they tasteless enough to discourage eating, but they are also low cal!

Step Five: Take all the kids out for pizza when they complain about the crappy mac and cheese with ketchup. Spend the whole time trying to convince the three year old food is good, and trying to keep the one year old from putting pizza in his hair. Add in the fifteen times you get change for arcade games and you have your workout for the day in! You don't have time to eat so you end up grabbing the lonely tomato left from last weeks salad when you get home.

Good luck Moms!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Being a Work at Home Mom

Being a work at home mom is a LOT harder with two little ones than I had imagined. My baby, Little Wiggle Worm, is very time consuming even when my three year old is entertaining himself. It doesn't really pay to depend on my husband or his older siblings to help out, either, just because they usually have their own projects going on.

Are you a WAHM? If so, what things do you to to ensure you have enough time in your day for your projects and your kiddos?

Monday, January 17, 2011

Going Green

Going green is really a bunch of little changes that add up to a lifestyle change. I really try to make everything I do as green as possible, but there are some things that I struggle with. Like Pine Sol. I freakin' LOVE the smell of Pine Sol. Seriously. Sometimes you can find me in Wal-Mart just sniffing a bottle because I stopped buying it. But I still love it!

Pine Sol is probably what heaven smells like, but I'm sure its all organic and chemical free there.

Anyway. So, now I just use tea tree oil, lavender and water. It smells pretty good and it get things clean so I can't complain. My next step is switching to all stainless steel water bottles for me and the kids. I stopped buying bottled water because of the pollution factor but now I just don't want to drink water. I also found some pretty cool filter bottles from Bobble (BPA free) that I am considering.

I also love makeup, and not the organic, bug free, all natural kind. I like really good waterproof mascara. But I don't mind mineral makeup, its actually pretty good.

My goals for this year are pretty simple as far as going green:
-grow a 100% organic garden with my kids that is more productive than last years
-Don't buy any more throw away batteries, but get the rechargeable kind for EVERYTHING. Which is a lot of stuff around here.
-Try to buy second hand whenever possible.
-Don't buy plastic (like dishes) and don't buy bottled water unless absolutely necessary.

What are your going green goals in 2011? I think I have a really good start this year. We are planning on buying clothes, games, toys and books secondhand and already have some plans for the garden!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

My Baby and Beer on TV

I am a co-sleeping Mom, and nights are often the time when Little Zelda Fanatic gets my undivided attention. Last night, we were lying down watching TV when a guy took a drink of beer. I didn't even know that my son knew what beer was, but as soon as he noticed the can he goes "Beer is good".
Of course, the Mom in me took over, even though I know beer is pretty good.
Me: Beer makes you sick. Only grownups drink it.
Little Zelda Fanatic: When I get big as Daddy, I'm gonna drink beer.
Me: (shocked) OK.

What the heck? How do kids even know what beer is when their parents don't drink it and they haven't seen anyone drink it? I guess that they just learn so much it's crazy in the first few years. Little Zelda Fanatic is almost 4 now, so I think the Mommy protecting stage is going to have to turn into Mommy educating-beer-is-bad-ABCs-are-good stage.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Little Lions Cloth Diapers Review: Prefolds

I love, love prefold diapers. They are my favorite diaper, but I only use them when its warmer outside. I do stock up on prefolds and prefitted diapers for summer and spring in the winter, though. The frugal mom in me just can't resist a deal!

Last week I picked up a dozen prefolds from Little Lions for $12. Let me just say it made my day to find prefolds so inexpensively, and from a brand that I love. Little Lions are soft, cushy and long lasting. My son is one and I still have his newborn infant prefolds and capris that I bought when he was about two months old, and they are still going strong. I use the capris to stuff pocket diapers, and the preemie and infant prefold diapers for wipes.

I have to say I really love Little Lions diapers, but I have also heard that Green Mountain prefold diapers are amazing.

To use a prefold diaper, you simply need toline the back up and fold it around the baby's front. Tuck the "extra" top of the diaper by folding the front down slightly under the belly button. You can use pins or a snappy to hold it in place. You can also fold your prefold into thirds and just lay it in your diaper cover, then put the cover on baby as normal. This works great for me with Little Wiggle Worm because he doesn't like to sit still for pins at all, and snappis just don't look comfy to me sometimes.

It does take some practice to learn how to use a prefold diaper, but it is worth it. They are cute and totally comfy for baby, especially when it is hot outside. We use our prefold diapers exclusively once spring turns warm, even at night.

There is a pretty good deal on diapers at Amazon, too. This is my affiliate link. If you are a Swagbucks mom, then you can even use your Swagbucks for Amazon giftxcards and get free diapers! Last time I bought a Snappi on Amazon they sent me Prime free for a year! Indian Prefold Diaper, Unbleached Regular

Monday, January 10, 2011

It's Official: I'm a Mom

My son is embarrassed of me. The conversation went something like this:

(Me) Why are you fighting with people on Facebook? (Which my daughter showed me on her Facebook, I purposely don't snoop. But that's another topic)
(TeenAngerForce Son) Delete me off your Facebook!
(me) Why?
(TeenAngerForce Son) Well, I've already filtered you because of all the weird "cloth diaper stuff". I don't want anyone to see that!

Well, I guess I've joined the millions of Moms who have kids that are shamed by them! The good thing is that now I can wear my Pajama Jeans to pick him up school and be proud!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Car Seat Safety: Expiration Dates and Other Information for Parents

Using a car seat isn't optional, and neither is making sure the car seat that you are using is in good working order. I have been researching car seats in the past few weeks and have made some major changes in the way that my kids ride in their seats.

For example, we didn't, and don't plan to, turn our one year old forward facing until we absolutely have to. There are some great articles online about the importance of extended rear facing, such as this:

There are also many, many reasons that you don't want to pick up a car seat that has been used. I *love* recycling and thrift shopping but I will never buy a second-hand car seat since any seat that has been in an accident, even a minor accident, should be trashed.

Car seats do have an expiration date and should be destroyed after the date on the side or bottom of the seat. Most car seats have a six year expiration date, while others may have a ten year expiration. Don't hesitate to toss a seat that is expired according to the label. The date that you actually purchase the seat may be much shorter than the six year time span.

You also need to check for current recalls of car seats. You can check the manufacturers website, or you can check here to find a list of manufacturer's websites. The name of the company that made your car seat should be written on the label or directly on the car seat.

Finally, some recommendations for car seats. Personally, we love the Recaro brand but Britax is also an excellent brand. Don't worry if you can't afford these brands, however. Using a car seat from Wal-Mart or Target is fine as long as you follow the guidelines for use and check the expiration dates.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Roman Town Review

A while back I was invited to try out Roman Town, a computer games based on archeology. My kids love stuff like this so I was so excited to install it for them as a surprise. The game itself is super easy to install. I was worried because I have Windows 7 and that wasn't listed on the package for the game as compatible, but it worked great!

My daughter and I tried the game out and ended up playing for a couple of hours on Saturday afternoon. She did most of the playing but the graphics looked nice and she had a lot of fun with it. My three year old played, too, so you can see how versatile the game is since my daughter is 14. We planned a party to show the game to some of the homeschoolers in my family on Sunday.

If you are a homeschool family, then you know how involved something as simple as a game can be! Roman Town included some archeology-friendly recipes along with their game, so we just had to try them out. We made the fossil dip using their recipe.

The recipe is:

-One round loaf of bread, hollowed out. The suggested pumpernickel, but we used honey wheat from the bakery.
-Veggies like carrots, celery and red pepper slices to excavate the dip.
-Veggie dip. We used sour cream with dry Ranch dressing mix, it is my kids favorite!

Just use the veggies to excavate the dip! How cute.

We also used our Roman Town cups, which have sports bottle lids, to drink Fossil Juice made with lemonade, ginger ale and green food coloring! The kids loved it!

The homescghool kids all loved it and so did the moms that came over. We had a lot of fun with the beanies and the cups that Roman Town sent out, too! The game is just the right thing when you want to incorporate history and archeology into your homeschool program or when you have kids like mine that just love history.

You can find Roman Town here:

Its a pretty cool game! One thing to note is that if your kids are into graphics or have a lot of games they play on the Wii or something, they may not be as impressed with the fun/showy factors. This is really and educational game, so its best for learning!

Twitter Party- Win Wii Stuff!

@ResourcefulMom is helping to host a Twitter party with Mamavation Mom Leah, also known as @Bookieboo on Twitter! So go RSVP here, and enter for a chance to win some great prizes!

Some of the prizes include:

1. GRAND PRIZE:Wii Bundle in black, white or red
The bundle comes with:

* Black Wii System
* Wii MotionPlus Remote
* Wii Nunchuk Controller Black
* Wii Sports
* Wii Sports Resort

Goo luck!