Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The "oh, my stars!" Pantyliner

Last month, I threw away my Diva cup.

OH dear. I boiled it, cleaned out the holes, prepped it for my next cycle, and accidentally tossed it away.

Crud.

I didn't realize it until I needed it. All I had available for my use were some paper pantyliners and after a trip across the street to the pharmacy, some tampons. I was NOT enthused. All week, I struggled as I have not struggled since hitting adulthood. I simply could not bring myself to feel comfortable using the paper products.

I ordered a new cup right away, of course. I'd be dumb not to. I also decided it was time to give cloth pads another shot. I had tried them twice before and each time gave up after only an hour because I just couldn't hack the bulk. But I was hating using the paper products, so what was my alternative?

A friend was insightful enough to ask me if I'd tried any commercially-made mama cloth or just WAHM-made items. She was right. I had only used WAHM products. She also found for me a website that had some name-brand mama cloth on deep sale.

SO I bought it. And I tried it. And found it to be not only satisfactory, but wonderful! HOoray!

Then I went online and searched patterns for making my own. Oh dear, look out, here comes another art project!

After three rounds of testing and altering a pattern I found online, I finally made a reusable cloth pantyliner that I am not only pleased to wear, but also pleased to show off!! Yay!

Now, to offload my prototypes.... anyone want a couple of unused 2nds quality cloth pantyliners?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

New Carseats!

The last time we were shopping for carseats, A was only 10 months old. As a large baby, she was already outgrowing our ability to carry her in the infant carseat. If you figure 25lbs of baby and 10lbs of carseat, that's a hefty load! We needed to buy her convertible carseats just so that we could leave one in each car and carry just the baby.

Our thoughts, when purchasing our last carseats, were that we would probably not have another child needing the convertible until A was ready for a booster. WRONG! A is still large for her age, but M is just so close in age that they both can fit into the Alpha-Omega carseats we had purchased for A. A, also, is too young for a booster, at 3 years old.

SO, we were off to buy new carseats. This time, we were certain that we could buy a front-facing convertible BOOSTER rather than a convertible carseat. There are so many factors to consider, though! It's like taking a gamble because you can't predict how your child is going to grow. Will she hit the weight or height limit for the harness first? Will she be ready for a lap belt positioner by the time M needs the booster? Will the belt positioner last her much longer than the harness? It's all a gamble.

We will likely have to play this game again in about 3-4 years when it's time for A to move to a non-harness booster. Sheesh.

For those who want to know, we went with the Evenflo Maestro. It is front-facing only, but does 5pt harness to 50lbs and has the highest harness slots on the market for under $150. We bought it at the Kohl's Safety Store in the UW Hospital's American Family Children's Hospital. It's a great place to shop if you're in the area.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Saturday Nite Supper

I won't take full credit for this recipe, either, but it's classic, satisfying, and simple.

Saturday Nite Supper
1lb ground meat (beef, turkey, pork, chicken)
1 15oz can of tomato sauce with Italian spices (not spaghetti sauce, this is with the tomato paste)
2 C frozen veggies (your choice)
1-2 C cooked pasta (shells, elbows, wheels)
shredded cheese

Brown the meat, drain.

Mix everything else other than cheese into a 2qt casserole and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Top with cheese.

C did not like this meal. In fact, he wouldn't even taste it. M couldn't get enough, A tolerated it, and I liked it enough to eat 5 servings of leftovers this week.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The Scoop on Poop

If you are squeamish about poop and puke, do not read any further.

Please consider yourself warned.

Last week, the baby and I had the stomach flu. I have never had to deal with a baby having the stomach flu before. A never got it as a baby, only as a toddler. I could never have imagined what it would be like.

All was quiet on Wednesday night when I put M to bed. At 11:45pm my husband woke me up with, "Nancy! Get in here now!" The baby had puked. And puked. And puked. For hours, in her bed. She's been sleeping in a pack n play since we are between houses. I don't know how much you know about pack n plays, but their matresses are NOT waterproof in any way. Thankfully, I had the insight two nights before to add a waterproof layer to 95% of the mattress. That doesn't mean she didn't nail the 5% of unprotected mattress, but it did help.

She had puke caked in her hair, in her pajamas, along her face, in the wrinkles of her fingers, etc. It was horrible. C jumped in the shower with her while I put together clean pajamas and cleaned the bed as much as I could. We decided to set up camp in the basement so that I could be near the bathroom there and somewhat secluded from the rest of the family.

I'd love to say that it stopped there, but it didn't.

M proceded to puke every 30-45 minutes all night. I started with lower unit malfunction about an hour into my night. Needless to say, I didn't sleep much. By morning, M was done puking and we spent the day drowsing on the pull-out couch/bed. M had a fever and wanted to do little besides sleep.

That evening, we both felt tired, but fairly well. I put M to bed in her own room and retired for the night in my own bed. An hour later, I woke, my heart racing, my stomach gurgling. Yup, I was no where NEAR done with the flu. Or is it that the flu was nowhere near done with me? I spent the night puking every 30-45 minutes, accompanied by the ever-fun watery bowels.

By dawn I was exhausted. I had not slept in over 36 hours. I had lost every iota of liquid my body could spare because while I had been puking and pooping, I had also been nursing and not keeping any fresh liquids down. I have to say, nursing while puking is NOT fun.

Of course, the baby woke at her usual 5:30am that day and because she had been sick and daddy had not, I got to take her and care for her that day, too. There was no sense in contaminating him.

For the next 24 hours, I thought I was recovering. I was dead tired, but I thought I was done. WRONG! Embarrassingly enough, I got the runs in the middle of the night and although it wasn't a big issue, I did change the sheets at 2am. I never knew I could poo in my sleep. When I woke the next morning, I returned to the queasy, watery bowel state that had occupied me for so many days already. I was so tired that after three rounds in the bathroom, I passed out on the basement couch and didn't wake for 2 hours.

We, M and I, are largely well now. Neither one of us is back up to full appetite, but we're moving and shaking with the best of them. I'm still living in abject fear that A or C will come down with this bug. After all, the stomach flu virus can be contagious for up to two weeks after symptoms disappear.

I wouldn't wish this one on ANYONE. In fact, I told C that I'd rather go through childbirth again than that flu. I meant it. Every last word.