Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Great Recovery

I joined The Great Recovery. According to the website, this is what the Great Recovery is:
The Great Recovery is a grassroots movement spread by people who are tired of looking to Washington for answers. The truth is that the government can’t fix this economy. It’ll be restored one family at a time, as each of us takes a stand to return to God and grandma's way of handling money.

Together, we’ll bring this country back on track—one family, one church, one community at a time.

There's nothing about this that's unhealthy or unrealistic. All it takes is self discipline. I've also started reading the Financial Peace book by Dave Ramsey. He is indeed a very motivational speaker. His motto, "live like no one else now, so you can live like no one else later" is so very inspirational. I want this. I want to be a better person, and do better in dealing with my family's finances. I believe Mr. Ramsey and the Great Recovery are the way to go.

I'll do my best to blog about it as we go. I've begun reading the book and I have to make some small daily commitments. Once I can manage to keep these, I'll be able to move on. Perhaps, no, actually, it will be a slow process. But it is worth it. Every second and minute of it!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Thirsties Thursday Giveaway

I just entered the first Thirsties Thursday Giveaway! A chance to win two Duo Fab Fitted diapers! I LOVVVE this diaper, tremendously. It's our nighttime diaper for now, but I'd love to have more for the day. It is absorbent and keeps my LO's dry. I haven't felt a wet bottom in the morning since we made this our night time diaper! Go check them out!
Thirsties Thursday Giveaway!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Flats and Handwashing Challenge, It's Over.

We're done with the flat challenge! I was very happy to put James in my favorite diaper this morning. It's a WAHM mystery diaper. I got it at Elemeno-Pee's yard sale. The previous owner couldn't recall where she'd gotten it. The super absorbent material on the inside is what swept me off my feet! This is it.
The mama suggested I post on DS to see if anyone would claim it. I'm going to give that a try. I just want to know what it's made of so I can get more like it! Or order from the mama! Okay, I cannot order more diapers. Oh, the addiction!

Right, so I was posting about the end of the flats challenge. I never used flats before the challenge. Never even thought of using them, what with all the incredible cloth diaper options there are today. Why waste time folding and doing the old school when they have so many, prettier options?

Towards the end, I was pretty tired of folding the flats. I really should have looked into more than just the kite and origami fold. Maybe I wouldn't have gotten so tired of the folding. I suppose another contributor was the uneven blankets I used. I could have simply cut them down to squares, but I didn't. These are simple problems to fix for the future (and some I could have EASILY mended during the challenge, as well). Regardless, it did not hinder the participation.

I purchased some Gerber flats before the challenge started, in hopes of using them for the challenge (HA HA). I had to double them up and use a pad fold for them to be any sort of use. I think in the beginning I didn't think they were so bad. Maybe it was the newness or the pure optimism for a "true" flat. Well, guess what? A name alone does not define function. Regardless of my previous opinion, at the end of the challenge, they're okay for doublers, but work best as a love-y for James (he loves to snuggle) or a miscellaneous rag.

I wish I had taken more pictures along the way, just because I'm a visual person. But truthfully how many photos of an origami folded baby butt do we need to see? I didn't get creative. I left well enough alone and simply participated. Don't get me wrong, I wanted to participate and was happy to do so! (My sisters said I was crazy and how some kind of unusual idea of fun.) I dream of being more creative, and on the best ways to go all out, but in the end I usually just do what it takes to get by. Every now and then I'd try to do some new folding to fit better on my two wigglers, but that's just it, the wigglers wouldn't keep still and I just gave up and used the same old, trusty origami fold! Man, this is sounding so somber and drab. I don't mean to, honest!

What else? Handwashing, oh yes. The camp style washer was pretty neat. I happily plunged for the first wash. As the minutes drew on, the darn thing started to crack and break and tear. I bought a cheap plunger and didn't have the drill bits to make nice little holes, so I used some scissors and ended up slicing and dicing a bit too much. Needless to say the pressure and pumping tore it more with each plunge. Then for the lid I cut out the hole at the top with a knife. The rough handling of the plunger cracked the lid. Then cracked it some more. I did not take a picture of this, because, honestly I was quite embarrassed of my (non) handy-work. It takes me! Really, it still worked. I used the camp style washer a couple nights. Then it really reached the point that it wasn't plunging so much as thrusting a stick in a bucket. Handwashing in the tub became the next best option. And you know what? I really preferred it. Sure, it took a lot longer than the camp style washer, but probably because I'm a bit OCD. I tried washing them in the kitchen sink one night, and no way will I ever do that when there's a bathtub around. I feel like I wasted so much water that way, too!

James was already dealing with a rash that wouldn't quit. About a day into the challenge I read somewhere about coconut oil and we tried that. Tada! Rash gone. After that, I'm pleased to say we didn't have any problems with rashes throughout the challenge.

Drying time left a lot to be desired, but it didn't really bother me. I did most of my washing at night and dried on my drying rack. I usually would have two that were still clean and waiting for the morning change. By the time we needed another change, they were dry. Two less (we had about 12 in all, not counting the Gerber flats that I only used for doublers) and I would have been squirming though. Well, until I realized, Holy way to get creative Batman, you can use t-shirts and sheets and other things around the house! (You mamas really are awesome, you know!) I never had to tap into the around the house resources though.

I really wish I had some "real" flats (I've mentioned this once or twice before, I know) so that I could compare the dried softness to my dried not-nearly-soft receiving blankets. It was better once I used the fan and some vinegar. I know different materials would have been better for this. Okay, I think I know. Drying them out in the wind and sun helps too. Alas, no clothes line for wind popping here in my apartment. Just my humble drying rack, drug out to the porch, and strategically placed to get the most of the wind and sun.

I used a snappi, diaper pins, and most of the time none at all. I really wish I had more snappis. The pins wouldn't be such a downer if my babies weren't such wigglers. Well, that and to push them through all the fabric really did take some strength (I was probably doing it wrong!). I'll end up getting more snappis. At least one more. While the origami fold stayed in place without any fasteners with the cover on it, it was much neater when I did use one.

Covers. I want more covers. I want more covers that FIT. We have one OS cover, 3 larges, and 1 medium. The larges are too big for my 25 lb toddler and way too large for my 22 lb infant. We used them, anyway. But I think it would have been a better experience to have some more covers that fit. The medium always went out of the rotation and into the dirties way too fast!

The best part about participating in the challenge: just that, participating in the challenge. I did what could be done by thousands of low income families (did I ever mention we ARE a low income family and it's part of the reason we ever started with the cloth diapers?). Think of the positive ripples this could have if only there would be more folks out there willing to just give it a try. This has spurred a true interest in trying to get this word out to daycares. I think the majority of the families that need to know about this have their baby in a daycare. (I could be so wrong about that, not based on the slightest statistic, just my own guesstimates.) I think I need to do this. I'm determined to get the word out to those that need to hear it the most.


Sunday, May 29, 2011

Flats and Handwashing Challenge, Day 7

Today is the last day of the challenge. At least to make it 7 full days (at midnight). I know some of the participants are carrying it over until tomorrow at midnight. Good for them! I can't say I'm very excited to go one more day. I miss my washing machine!

Kiddos are still in flats with covers. We did have an hour and a half of non-flats during church. Sure, I felt guilty about this, and I probably could have pushed the issue, but I didn't. I guess this means I failed the challenge, at least in the competitive sense of the word. We did, however, go into this for much less than $100 and wore the flats all week while only handwashing! I know that it is indeed possible for anyone to cloth diaper. It most certainly is not a monetary issue that would prevent anyone from cloth diapering their child.

So, this has me thinking a bit about the world we live in. Sure, we can cloth diaper all we want and show the world how great it is, but will they listen? Unfortunately, the majority does not, so most daycares (at least here in my area) are not happy about cloth diapers. They all shrivel up when it's mentioned. When my two babies first started the daycare was all about allowing my cloth diapers. Yet, every day that I picked them up, they were in a disposable. The reason was usually not worthy of the disposable. I'm not a person big on confrontations and I would just let it be and continue bringing the cloth diapers each day. Without fail they'd come home in the disposables. Even though they said they'd be more than happy to work with me on the cloth diapering aspect, they did not. When I mentioned it, it seemed like there was one excuse after the other, and as I've said, I am not the confrontational type, so I let it go. At the time I was very busy with nursing school and clinical rounds in the hospital that I didn't really have the energy to fight it. So, in the end, my babies were in disposables at daycare.

Now I'm a SAHM and I wish I could be forever. Unfortunately, my time is narrowing down and I will, sooner rather than later, have to turn in my time at home with my babies and send them back to daycare. This time, I will have more to say about it and I will push the issue. In fact, I'll probably take it a step further and try to convince them to start cloth diapering those babies whose parents don't bring in enough diapers. I've seen kids have to stay in those yucky disposables far too long because they didn't have anymore for them to wear. It's about the babies, after all. I can't see a parent complaining about their child wearing a cloth diaper while they're at a daycare. I can see a daycare employee complaining about a cloth diaper. Perhaps education is all they're missing. It is indeed an issue worth confronting.

So, yeah, we did the challenge, and even though we deviated for an hour or so, we're back in our flats (receiving blankets!) until tomorrow. I'm happy I participated.





Saturday, May 28, 2011

Flats and Handwashing Challenge, Day 6

Day 6 of the Flats Challenge! One more day! I say that like I'm all excited, but honestly the challenge hasn't been bad. I'm honestly going to include flats into my daily rotation. It may not be a full time thing, as I am quite attached to my fitteds, pockets, and AIO's! The real excitement about the end of the challenge is no longer having to wash by hand! Yay! Washing by hand hasn't been the worst, or yuckiest, task I've had to do on a daily basis, but, ya know, I've got a washer, so why not take advantage of that wonderful invention!

I washed my diapers in the tub by hand sans camp style washer. I rinsed twice, washed, and they still smelled of urine to high heavens! So, I did an individual rinse, wash, rinse (with vinegar!) in the tub instead of having them all in together. I used Rockin Green this time around (been using Charlies Soap <3). Once I did a more thorough and individual rinse and wash the smell was gone, gone, gone! The sun was shining and I hung them all out to dry on my drying rack. The wind was blowing a bit. Dry time was much shorter than overnight drying and with the wind and vinegar, they came out much softer today! Since this went over so well, I'll wait to wash until the morning, again. I'll be able to hang them outside, again! Why didn't I do this from the beginning? Silly, silly mommy.

Flats and Handwashing Challenge, Day 5

Last night I fell asleep trying to get Olivia to sleep. I was fully dressed and had not washed my diapers yet, either! We didn't make it back to Lafayette until after 8pm. Now I get to try to remember what yesterday was like.

I really don't think their was anything extraordinary that occurred as far as the Flats challenge goes. The oscillating fan sped up my drying time just a bit, but now we're back home and I don't have an oscillating fan. I'm going to try the vinegar in the rinse cycle this morning when I wash. I'm not incredibly upset about not washing last night. This way I'll get to try a few more things as a flat. The sun is shining outside, and now I get to see how fast they dry out there versus hanging them over night. Any guesses as to which is fastest? Right, that's not even a real question, we all know the answer! I just have to remember to bring in the covers (PUL) as soon as they're dry or this Louisiana heat will damage them!

All right, I need to get moving and washing and cleaning. I promise to get the pictures I've taken the past couple days up soon!



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Flats and Handwashing Challenge, Day 4

Yesterday at about 1:30 pm my two babies and I hit the road for an overnight visit to grandma's house. For the drive, I just added a Gerber flat in a pad fold inside the origami folded receiving blanket. Worked just fine! The only time we ever have any wetness come through is when I just opt for Gerber flats (two, pad folded). Alone (or even doubled with another of it's kind) isn't worth it, but as an extra insert, it does seem to help, even if just a little bit.
I decided to wash in the sink last night. I didn't bring my camp style washer (on purpose). I wanted to be able to try different ways to find out for myself what really works the best for me. The sink too FOREVER. Same amount as it's been, about 12 flats (blankets), about 6 covers, and two wetbags. I guess the sink was too small for this method to really be worth my while. I didn't bring my drying rack, either, in hopes of drying them on the line outside. But I don't have enough to dry them during the day without washing and hanging periodically throughout the day. When you're visiting, that's just not really an option. Instead, I used some old dog runners and stretched them across the utility room (which is actually a pretty nice size compared to most). I did take pictures, but my laptop decided it really didn't feel like uploading my pictures tonight. When I get back home (we're still visiting), I'll add in the pictures.
They still weren't very dry this morning, so I used a hooded towel on my little man, and it worked very well. I was really hoping to slice and dice some old flannel sheets my mom had offered me in the past (I declined then because I did not even begin to fathom using them for anything other than sheets--believe me, you folks have definitely led me to a much more recycled way of thinking!). Much to my dismay, they are at the camp, a couple hours away and in a flood, okay, above the flood, at least! Since we were anticipating the flood here, as well, she didn't have too much else in the way of materials to upcycle. By the time I needed another diaper, at least a thinner one was dry!

Okay, I'm confused on the rules with the dryer bit. So many people have suggested tossing the scratchy stiffness into the dryer on air for about 10 minutes to bring back some fluff and softness to them. Is that allowed? I mean, if you're not supposed to have access to a dryer, isn't this cheating a bit? Or is the suggestion simply for when you do hang dry? I've always fluffed my diapers in the dryer after a line dry, but I thought about it, and came to the conclusion it would just be wrong somehow, to do it during the challenge. Tonight I have an oscillating fan on them as best as I could get it (what with my criss cross lines) in such a small space. Hopefully this helps. I did read the other suggestions of beating the softness back into them; scrunching them up and such. It's just not much help to these old receiving blankets. I wonder if perhaps the true flats are somewhat softer in their drying than my make-do ones. I certainly would imagine if I had cut up my sheets, they would be softer (I also have some 500 thread count sheets that I tore an enormous hole in one night in some sort of night terror that I wanted to use, but it, too, is at the camp) and not such a hassle to soften. I picture the true flats to be more like prefolds in this aspect, I guess, and I know for a fact those do come out softer than my blankets after line drying. Maybe it doesn't seem like such a big deal, but I know I'd certainly refuse to have a stiff blanket wrapped around my delicates. I feel a little guilty submitted my babies to stiff butts! Maybe if I literally beat them before I take them off the line/rack? Like with a flyswat, or something. I don't know why I think that would make it better!

Flats, I know I will continue to use and purchase in the future, but this whole no washer and dryer deal is just for the birds. I do appreciate what those without would have to go through. If I did not have access, I would wash them by hand though, because I am so commited to cloth. In a financial situation, I still find it hard to imagine why some would think that diapers are an absolute expense (the disposables, I mean). I think all daycares should at least advertise cloth and propose it as a viable option. It should be required that daycares accept cloth diapers! I worked at a daycare for about a month, and while I was there, I often had to remind parents daily that their child was OUT of diapers and had none left. It wasn't because they just kept forgetting to bring them all the time, I KNOW that (for some, anyway) it was a financial situation. They could not afford to buy more diapers. I always mentioned cloth and I really wish that I had the time to do into the whole spill with the parents instead of just quick quips when they were retrieving their child. I was always running after other children and didn't really have the time, nor did they really want to hear it (because of preconceived--you all know this already!). Some days I just wanted to show my child's butt to all the parents. "SEE! It's CUTE, even! NOT what you think!" Wow. I digress.

We're still succeeding. Night time is still dry and day is still chugging along just fine. Tonight, though, I hand washed in the bath tub with a MUCH faster wash rate than last night in the kitchen sink. It also helped that I only had two poopy diapers instead of 4. But so it goes.

I really love all y'all! It makes my heart swell with joy to be a part of something so great right now. God bless each and every one of you!


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Flats and Handwashing Challenge, Day 3

 Last night was so much fun. Really. Okay, that's sarcasm. I'll tell you why in just a minute. Yesterday was another day of success with the flats! I am, however, realizing that I really do prefer sized diaper covers as opposed to their OS counterparts. They fit so much better. Using the flats definitely gives a trimmer fit (when I fold it right!), and wow, who knew both my kiddos are on the smaller side of a medium? We went through about the same amount of diapers both days so far. Between my two, we use about 10-12 flats and 7-8 covers. Yesterday was a bit of a pooper, too. Had I done some better folding (or had my 11 month old kept still for 1 minute), it might have contained the poop and saved the cover from contamination, but, so it goes! Still room to go with the limit.


When it came down to washing the diapers last night, it was nearly midnight and my two were still going. Cranky, of course. I know, I'm an awful mommy for letting them be up so late, but some days it's easier to just let them wear themselves out than to fight with forcing them to sleep, right? But this is about my diapering. I went with literally hand washing last night. I ditched the plunger. I did use the bucket, but I still didn't feel like my diapers were coming clean enough. I emptied it out into the tub and donned my fancy (ha ha) purple rubber gloves and went to town scrubbing each diaper, one by one (like I said, about 12, so hardly a terribly time consuming task). I felt much better about the cleanliness.


My drying time hasn't been incredibly awful, but still, for the thin blankets I'm using, I'm really a bit surprised they don't dry faster. I should wring the out better, I know. But when you've got two kiddos at your feet "helping," well, you all know what I'm saying! There are about 4 still drying on my rack, but I've got enough that are dry to get me through until those are dry. Works out just right. My biggest complaint about hang drying (other than putting them on a drying rack and not a clothesline--don't have one, I live in an apartment) is how STIFF they come out. I pop and wad and wave them around to get a little bit of softness into them, but they're still stiff. I'm going to figure this out, yet!

About 4 am this morning Olivia woke up vomiting and each time it would come up, it would also come out the other end. I most definitely wanted to throw in the towel, or throw out the blanket as it were. Then I immediately felt guilty because if all I had were flats, I most definitely would not have the option to switch up to a "better" diaper. In fact, I can't even really say why I wanted to switch to something else, it's all the same, except for folding a clean one to put on. Tonight I will have a couple prepped and ready, just in case. (She is fine this morning, I think it was something she ate.)

So, day three, here we are, and I'm still okay with using my flats. Sure, I've wanted to grab my others a few times in the past two days, but for no real reason. The flats are completely functional and so far, leak free! Really, I love this challenge.



Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Flats and Handwashing Challenge, Day 2



We made it through Day 1 of the challenge. I went through more diapers than I anticipated, though! I pulled out the hooded towels. So far, I have not needed them today. I guess yesterday was the heavy load to attempt to discourage me from the flats! Not done, however, we're still flattin' it up!

Washing the diapers last night in my camp style washer was an experience indeed. I ended up cracking the lid a good bit. In the end, I was using my hands, which made me feel a bit like I was doing more cleaning, anyway. I do like using the bucket, though.

Last night I ended up using a flat and a prefold on both my little ones. They were both dry upon waking. With the overwhelming success I've read about, I'm going to stick with just the flats tonight.

I'm really glad everyone is having such luck with the challenge so far! I do wish I had some "real" flats and not just the blankets I'm using. I'm sure they'd be more absorbent than the thin blankets we have. Alas, I will not spend the money on them at this point in time, especially when part of this is all about saving money and making do with what we've got!

I wonder how many people will pull flats into their regular rotation of diapers after this? I know I probably will.





Monday, May 23, 2011

Flats and Handwashing Challenge, Day 1


Day 1 of the flats challenge!

My flats consist of 10 receiving blankets and 12 Gerber flats. I know, the Gerber flats have often been called Gerber crap, but I decided to go ahead and give them a shot. If all else fails, I've got some nice cleaning rags. And James seems to like to use it as a love-y. I did, of course, do a trial run with them first. No, they are not super absorbent or a fantastic flat by any means, but they do hold up for at least one pee. I'm using 4 Thirsties covers and one Prowrap.

I have not mastered the folds, so we're just using the pad fold for right now. I can do the Kite fold, but I only have ONE snappi. How did that happen, right? Well, I've mostly just used pockets and AIO's in the past. I have diaper pins, but with my wigglers, those are not very fun to apply! No worries, though! It's all good. I am psyched for the challenge!




Okay, I took a break and came back to it. Check out this Origami fold!!
I'm quite proud of myself. It shall get better as we fold more and more! So far, so good with the challenge. The real challenge comes tonight when I do the first washing!

”#flatschallenge”


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Flats and Handwashing Challenge -- How I'm Preparing

I only just decided to participate in the challenge this morning.  The prepping for the challenge has been underway, regardless, since I began to consider participating.  I do need to purchase a few more items, or try to round them up, anyway.

As of right now, I have some receiving blankets that we'll be using.  I've yet to decide if I'm going to purchase an actual flat diaper.  I've been searching for used flats to no avail.  I have one Snappi that I'm sure will be used a time or two, but I prefer to use diaper pins, I think.

I'm going to fashion my camp-style washer today and continue to practice with my folding!

This was my first attempt at what I thought was a kite fold.  It's okay, I laughed, too!

Flats and Handwashing Challenge

Okay folks, this is it!  I'm joining up in Dirty Diaper Laundry's Flats and Handwashing Challenge.  Oh good Lordy, WHY OH WHY would you submit yourself to such ICK?  Well, I'm glad you asked.  I started cloth diapering my daughter when she turned 1.  I probably wouldn't have even considered cloth diapering IF I had heard about it while I was pregnant with her, but when baby number two started cooking, I heard about it and thought, "Wow, I could really save some money!"  So, I did my research and despite all the confused, baffled looks (some were even the "I'll just humor you for now and I'll laugh and say I told you so when you throw your arms in the air in surrender to the TRASH you so easily disregard now") and discouraging words that came my way, I dived in and did it.  Cloth today is so much nicer than it was in the past! DD turned 2 over a month ago, and though we had some disposable moments (daycare, especially...that's an entirely differently blog that I didn't do), we're still cloth diapering.  The cuteness, the fluff, the good green feeling (no, not the green I'm going to spew any minute green...more like the fresh cut grass green)...it just works for me and my little ones.

Okay, so now I get to the part about why I want to regress a few decades and do the flats challenge.  Well, being that I am a cloth diapering addict, I don't think I could hear about a challenge that includes cloth and simply look the other way.  I have to admit, I was really on the fence about it until, oh, an hour ago.  While trying a "new" cloth method can be fun, this one is definitely dirty.  I had to stop and think about it. What it comes down to...the biggest challenge of the challenge for me will be the actual handwashing of the diapers.  I already rinse my diapers (ya know, the poopy ones), and for a while it has been completely by hand until I just recently (last week--funny, huh?)  reinstalled my diaper sprayer.  So the real work will be in the agitating and being a washing machine.  What's the worst that can come of this?  Some muscle toning?  Snickering on the part of my friends and siblings?  All in all, nothing terrible.

AND THINK OF THE MONEY I'LL BE SAVING!  Perhaps not a huge heaping load, but I do wash diapers at typically every 1-2 days.  This is a key reason to participate.  I think it speaks for itself, so I'm not going to say anything else about that.

After this, I can take that camping trip and be the hip(pie?) mom that keeps on the green in the green. (Good Lord, I am incredibly entertaining to myself!)

Dirty Diaper Laundry Flats Challenge




Monday, May 16, 2011

My Weekend Review

On Friday afternoon we drove on down (actually, it's UP) to Marksville.  We spent the majority of the afternoon at granny's house, talkin' about the upcoming flood and playing outside. I left her house with a bag of dolls, newborn baby clothes (she swiped them when my cousin was getting rid of them, I don't need them, but they are cute!), a bag of material/fabric, and a small sewing box filled with thread.  I've yet to go through the material, again, but I am excited to attempt sewing.  Which reminds me, she said I'd need oil for the machine.  Do newer machines need that?

Anyway, after that, we made the short drive to my parent's house where I discovered I no longer had a key...or at least not with me!  Thankfully my phone had service, so I called granny back up and she rescued us with a key.  We played inside and watched Charlotte's Web while we waited on momo to get home.  I decided to don some makeup for the Travis Tritt concert, but decided against the contacts.  I wore my big red, nerdy glasses, just so I was sure I could see him! Finally, momo made it home and I ran off to the casino to see one of my all time favorite singers!

His show was absolutely fantastic.  At the last song, I rushed the stage (they wouldn't let anyone go up there before that) and made it almost directly in front of him!  I got a few decent pictures, I guess.  It was mostly just nice to be in the presence of some great music.  In his very last encore song, he shook people's hands in the front, which means mine, too!  It wasn't the normal touch and go type, he actually took the time to grasp and shake! It was very nice.  He was very nice.  This was even his second time coming to the casino to play!  I think he must be a pretty decent man, too, if he'd come back to a small town like this to play when he can have sold out larger venues!


Not the best picture, but I like it, anyway.

Saturday morning we were up pretty early, which is no different from most mornings.  Only difference was Olivia was still zonked out with her momo.  James and I scooted on over to granny's house, again, so mommy could get some coffee and rock and talk with granny.  I used to do that every morning when we still lived in Marksville.  I miss it!  I'll always be able to cherish those times I was able to go, though!  Anyhow.  We sat and talked and my cousin came over with her youngest, then another cousin with her baby.  Our kids are all about the same age, so they can play together.  They decided to be shy, though, and didn't really play with each other much.  Eventually the other little girl came around and they played with dolls.  Olivia also managed to walk away with even more dolls (this girl LOVES any sort of doll or stuffed animal and loves them all individually--she's a little mama!).  She slept with her "favorite" one when we got home Saturday night.  It's the doll she's always played with every time we visited granny.  I suppose we would have left it there, but being faced with the flood, granny was trying to get rid of some things.

We made our way back to Lafayette just in time for me to make it to the Elemeno Pee Backyard Cloth Diaper Sale AKA Resale. I was very excited for this event, and even ditched the moving party going on at my parent's house in preparation for the flood (I'm not sad that I missed this, but I did feel a tad guilty even though they assured me I was not needed, especially since I'd be mostly busy watching my babies, anyway). I got there just in time for the sale to start, which was only slotted to last an hour!  I loaded up with about 13 new diapers, all in excellent used condition, and all from only one mama! I was sure glad she showed up with her many boxes of diaper treasure! I walked out with 2 shorties (1 WAHM, 1 thumbelina diapers), 2 thirsties covers, 1 bummis super whisper wrap cover, 1 Lovelybums wool cover, 1 daisy doodles AIO, 1 WAHM AIO, 2 BSRB fitteds, 2 pampered cheeks fitteds, and 1 firefly diaper fitted! The best part? I got all that for $73!!!!

Saturday afternoon when I checked the mail, I had a slip informing me of a package in the office, but I was already too late to retrieve it, which meant no package til Monday!

Sunday morning James and I woke up early, and started our normal, daily routine.  Milk for him, coffee for me.  He watches Turbo Dogs, Pearlie, Babar, Sesame Street, or Sheldon or something similarly decent while I read up on the night folks' posts and whatnot.  Then Olivia comes strolling into the room, rubbing her sleepy eyes, climbs into my lap and rests her head on my shoulder.  Only then does she notice that James is up and playing already.  She says to me, "Oh! I not wake up James.  He wake up his self."  (She's two, c'mon! She'll learn to talk better....I sincerely hope, we do the correcting and such.)  She was pretty surprised, since it's usually her that wakes him up during the day.  But I digress.  We got ready for church and headed out.  I ran into my small group members there and we sat together for the service.  I normally sit with my sister, but she's in GA living it up at Korean spas, swimming in a nice pool, and eating boiled seafood.  It was nice to see people other than relatives and sit with them, like I belonged.  I didn't even feel uncomfortable...well, maybe a couple times when I had no idea what they were talking about, but it didn't last long, and they always included me when they talked, even when they knew I didn't know what they were talking about.  Anyhow, it was a nice service with nice friends.

Sunday evening we went to one of my sister's houses and had supper with her and her husband.  It was nice to visit with them for a while.  They couldn't share in my excitement for my new cloth diapers, though!  They don't any kids (YET, I say).  Maybe one day she'll understand!  Or not, not everyone can get into the cloth diaper love.

Today has been rather uneventful other than my endless attempts at cleaning.  I also had a big old tension headache most of the afternoon that stifled any whole-hearted attempts at cleaning.  One of the sisters did come over for lunch, and she was kind enough to retrieve my box at the office.  The box was from a mama on DiaperSwappers. She didn't post pictures,  but had a brief summary of the contents.  She said she could not post pictures, so really I prepared for the worst, but took the chance that it would be worth what I spent on it.  I suppose it was.  I probably would have made it about $20 cheaper, myself.  Granted there were about 20 something diapers included in the box.  Mostly diaper covers and empty pockets...that are really old.  I haven't taken really good pictures yet, but I will eventually.  There are about 25 flannel wipes that were included and that excites me.  Really wasn't crazy about the prints, but Olivia loved it.  They are very bright, indeed.  Five of them have owls on them, though, and you know how owls are in style right now!  I did snap a quick picture of some of the diapers drying outside on the rack (apartment life, sigh).

I need to take pictures of all my newest diapers. Or heck, even my whole stash that I have right now.  

Anyway, I guess that about sums it up!  Tomorrow, who knows what will happen! 

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Diapers and Shelves

Yesterday's cloth diapering appointment was nice.  I guess because I enjoy talking about something I know a little bit about is enjoyable.  I really feel like I talk too much sometimes.  Anyhow, I walked out of the door with two new Thirsties Duo Fab Fitteds.  I got a the Mango and Orchid colors.  The orchid is lavender/purple, and the very first non-gender neutral diaper I've gotten!  I purchased these diapers for the nighttime.  I'm still in the process of prepping them (wash 7 or 8).  They will be ready tonight, and I can't wait!  I've been using BumGenius  3.0 OS pockets double stuffed.  That system works pretty well for my babies on most nights, but I am ready for a more comfortable alternative. I also purchased a Little Beetles OS organic merino wool cover. I have yet to purchase any Lanolin, so it isn't ready, yet, but I plan to remedy that today (I forgot yesterday).  And, finally, I bought a FuzziBunz Hanging Diaper Pail, Crushed Berries. Olivia was very pleased with this and dug it out of the bag and held it 'til we got home.

I bought some WAHM wool, all recycled from DiaperSwappers.  I'm actually very pleased with it, despite the little flaws and repairs they need.  I suppose because I've never had any other wool before!  I got it for an excellent price, though. And for me to just try it out, I think they're perfect!  So far, they've worked fabulously!  I have yet to take any decent pictures of either kiddo sporting some, though.  That shall come!

I went in search of some wall mounted shelving yesterday, as well, and I came up empty handed.  A friend directed me to IKEA's website and I was pleasantly pleased to find exactly what I wanted, only to be incredibly upset that EVERY item I wanted was unavailable online.   So, I browsed around some more online and found the Container Store, which I also loved.  Those prices, however, are just a bit over my budget. Regardless, I think I've figured out what I want to put up in the living room for the books and for the DVDs.  It would be fantastic to have thousands of dollars to spend on organizational items!   I could use some more organization in my life!  I know I don't need those things and can make do with something...crafted to serve the same purpose. My mom was amazing at building and making things.  I often feel like I've got the same creativity within me, but I lack the ambition or some other critical element to make it happen.  C'est la vie!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

It's Wednesday.

Last night I attended my first Small Group from church.  They were all extremely friendly.  Everyone brought their children along.  I think the oldest may have been about 8.  And the youngest was James (nearly 1).  One of the couples has 4 kids! All girls--just like my family I grew up with.  (Honestly, it made me want another child!  But, that just won't happen right now!)  We had sandwiches and chips to eat.  There were also brownies.  Olivia did not eat one because she was having so much fun playing with the girls.  She cried when it was time to leave.  We discussed Luke 12:1-34.  I actually spoke and didn't have much anxiety about being around new people. I probably said too much, though! I thought about reading, but I wasn't quite ready to do that.  Once upon a time I was a pretty good narrator, but it has been so long since I've needed to read anything aloud.  Well, that's not true, I read to Olivia and James every day!  But I digress. It was good times and I'm happy that I decided to join a small group.

Olivia is the next youngest in the group.  Above her is another little girl, who is almost 3.  She's potty trained.  Olivia was wearing a Babyland cloth diaper (I knew better, but I was down to those, the rest were all in the wash!). I even doubled stuffed it with some prefolds, but alas, she peed on one of the little girls laps, and it went right through that diaper!  I don't know why I even keep them!  Maybe they need some stripping or something.  I don't know.  Regardless, it was incredibly embarrassing!

I have an appointment today with a diaper consultant.  I hope I don't spend too much money, but I  know I'll buy a few things.  If nothing else, some flats for possibly participating in the Flats and Handwashing Challenge. I plan on going over wool and how to care for it.  I bought some off of Diaperswappers and I haven't the first idea how to take care of it, other than it does not need to be washed very often.  That seems incredibly unsanitary, I know, but wool has some antimicrobial properties and such. Anyhow, that appointment is at 1 pm.  It's already close to 8:30 am.  I have a good bit to do before then. Cleaning.

I like cleaning on some days, but I have not had any of those here of late.  My children are fantastic at destroying and undoing the cleaning I've done. It would help if I were more organized, which I always long for, but rarely achieve.  But on that note, I really must get to work!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

It's all about the babies!

Okay, lets try this, again! I'm going to start blogging about my day to day staying at home with my two lovely babies, Olivia and James.

I cloth diaper and I'm addicted to it! I have mostly blogged on my livejournal account, but it's private, mostly. So, there aren't any recent entries here, but there will be!! It will all be public.

My most recent endeavor is wool covers and shorties/longies. Also, I'm seriously considering participating in the Flats and Hand washing challenge! (http://dirtydiaperlaundry.com/take-the-flats-and-handwashing-challenge-may-23-30/)

Also, I'm going to start learning to sew and knit and/or crochet. I'm going to track all my progress (or lack thereof) here!