Clothaholic Part 2

In my first roundup on cloth diapering, I mentioned that I was ordering cloth prefolds and Thirsties waterproof covers. Well! After using a few of those, I bought more when Maggie outgrew the extra-small covers. And after having those in rotation, I’m buying a dozen more prefolds and some more Thirsties covers.

Though the tag on the small size says 12-18 pounds, I estimate that Maggie is closing in on 15 (dear lord, where did my newborn go?!) and the covers are still fitting well enough (the tabs almost overlap when they’re on her) that I don’t anticipate needing to go up a size for a while. When she’s big enough to go into medium covers, I’m going to rethink what I’m using under them. I don’t think I will order prefolds in the next size up, and instead will go with cloth fitteds that are quicker to put on wriggly bodies.

Hindsight is always 20/20, and I think if I have learned nothing else about parenting in the last four months (and I assure you that I probably have not), it is that you do the best you can with the information you have at the time. Had I known that I would be working from home I might have gone this route from the start, but we thought she would be in daycare 30-40 hours a week and the BumGenius diapers were the most daycare friendly.

Side note: Actually, had we needed to go through with the daycare thing we would have discovered what Tom’s coworker who was considering cloth diapering found out: daycares around here refuse to use cloth. Period. No negotiation. She even brought one of our diapers in to show them that it was no extra work. They wouldn’t hear it. That kind of shocked me because a pocket diaper for daycare? So easy! No work at all for them! You just put it in a wet bag to go home at the end of the day. It’s not a regulation thing–I checked when we were researching daycare and there are no explicit rules forbidding cloth in the state regs, as long as the parent provides the bag and does all the washing. I haven’t asked but I’m guessing these facilities probably also pressure parents to send formula instead of pumping because it’s easier; I know that she couldn’t send glass bottles for her son’s milk (although that one I sort of understand) and had to go with the BPA-free plastic.

Anyway, digression over. On the second time around–apparently you really *do* forget how much pregnancy kind of sucks–we’ll use a lot more prefolds in the early stages, especially because it saves wear and tear on the expensive BumGenius ones. I have no idea if I’ll be working at home or in an office, but we’ll plan like daycare is a possibility.

In summation: Thirsties covers ROCK for the price. Never even a hint of a leak. (Wool covers are lovely but a) they are not in my budget and b) I do not knit so I can’t make my own. Rock ’em if you’ve got the cash or the skills, though.) Big thumbs up for the semi-old-fashioned route.


Splish splash

Our little girl tries the Pacific, and gets a bath afterward. She was more interested in lying on her back and gazing at palm trees. She’s a daydreamer already.

The thumb cutting is in reference to an unfortunate nail clipper incident right before bathtime. BLOOD EVERYWHERE, MUCH SCREAMING. But I immediately nursed her and she forgot all about it after a minute or two. Daddy, on the other hand…


Tom and I often play music for Maggie. Up-tempo when we’re playing so she can “dance,” relaxing when it’s time to go to sleep, and everything else in between. When we want her to sleep, the piece of choice is usually Bach’s Cello in G Major prelude. We both play it for her while we’re bouncing her to sleep (people have asked me if she falls asleep on her own yet, and I want to ask who has these miraculous self-soothing three month olds who just pop off to sleep whenever someone lays a blanket over them, because mine is great but her track record definitely isn’t that good, and I have made my peace with the fact that I am not wired for the “cry it out” method) and she generally falls asleep to the sounds of the cello.

On the way back from Honolulu today, Maggie deeply resented being put into her car seat. I suspect that when she’s big enough to forward-face and see us, the squawks of righteous indignation will stop entirely, but she’s a hell of a lot better than she used to be. The screaming got kind of intense, and Tom had his iPod in the car, so I queued up Bach and put it on the stereo.

Two minutes in, quiet snuffling. Less than five minutes later, contented soft snoring from the back seat. She slept all the way home and was happy and bubbly when she woke up.

What do you know? Pavlov was right.

Goal Setting

Last year, one of my favorite bloggers put her Life’s To-Do list on her blog. In a long confluence of events, Intel agreed to sponsor ten items on her life list. They range from the humble (sparklers with her son) to the more grand (write a million dollar check to charity). That got me thinking. I’ve always been a big dreamer, but my follow-through isn’t always so great. I figured attitude is half the battle, so I decided a few weeks ago that I should make a list of five things I wanted to do by this time next year:

1. Be paid to write and/or photograph
2. Start a new school program
3. Create something beautiful for my daughter
4. Exercise regularly
5. Learn more about Hawaii–history, language, and things to do around Oahu

Well! Ask and ye shall receive.

RE #2: I was accepted to UH’s Digital Art program last Wednesday. It was a last-minute application so I don’t know if I will have the necessary (and in my opinion, really stupid since I’m not living in the dorms) MMR and TB paperwork in on time. I will have to play registration by ear but the program is a combination of photography and graphic design. Whee!

RE #3: Rummaging through my craft drawer, I found a ball of pink, orange, yellow, and green varigated silk yarn. I don’t know how much 145yds will knit, but I found a simple dishrag pattern that I know my left-handed aunt and mother can do (my aunt knit a beautiful, sturdy cotton blanket for Maggie using an adaptation of the pattern) so I am going to ask her and my mom to help me start it this fall in Maine. If it’s not enough for a full blanket, it can be a blanket for Dr. Drewbear, the bear my friend Andrew got her when she was born.

RE #4: Dr. Google found me a Couch-to-5k program that looks interesting. I may start it this week if weather permits!

And the best one is a combination of 1 and 5…

After some digging, applying, and sample-writing, I was hired by a travel start-up to write content for a guide to the islands. The pay isn’t much, but it’s all on my byline, allows me to stay home with the baby, and in time they may pay for me to travel to other islands. o_O I know! How cool is that?

So that’s what’s new here. Neat, eh?

Unsolved Mysteries

I don’t know what my neighbor’s deal is here, but it’s fun to speculate. Isn’t it? Or is it more nerve-wracking to imagine what they could possibly be doing with an ironing board made to look like a bed? I do not know, but now you can wonder too.

Question posed to the good people of Costco: if a baby is wearing a onesie containing purple polka dots and overalls with a motorcycle on it, is the baby a) a boy, b) a girl, or c) the square root of purple is 42.

The correct answer is C.

Third mystery: why do babies NEED teeth? Can’t I just fit Maggie with dentures? She’s bleeding, she bites, she is clearly uncomfortable. There’s no reason she needs natural teeth. I would consider it money well spent to just slap some Polydent down on some nice stain-resistant fakes and have done with it. Ow.

Direct Hit

For weeks now I’ve wondered if Maggie had really bonded to me. Sure, I spend all day with her, but she is deeply thrilled to spend evenings with her father. She’ll be held by anyone without complaint. Of course I provide 95% of her meals–fresh from the tap, as it were–but she knows her daddy can provide the fresh-from-concentrate frozen version if required. I think the sun rises and sets on her, but it seemed she could take or leave me.

On Friday I hurt my back getting the car seat out of the back. As such, we’ve been doing 90% of the nursing lying down on the bed or on a mat on the floor in the living room because holding her, even supported, is still a bit painful.

Now, Maggie has started to register more complex emotions aside from “HUNGRY NOW!” “WET NOW!” “Ahhhhhh BOOB” and my favorite “Why are you shaking that rattle thing in my face? If I smile, will you stop?” Anger, happiness–it’s all starting to come into play.

We were enjoying a quiet, happy morning today, wearing her in the sling so I could move freely and try to do some housework. I put her down on the bed today, taking her out of the sling and moving to the side of the bed so I could get down and position myself comfortably. Maggie, unaware she was about to be rejoined to me, stared at me for a second and then her face just crumpled. It wasn’t a hungry “feed me!!” grimace or a scared “Where are the big people?!” frown, it was actual hurt. A sad, confused “But…mommy…we were having a nice time!” moue coupled with a tiny cry. She cried in a different tone than before, a little more plaintive and sad. I cuddled her to me before starting to nurse and she stopped and smiled. I felt relief that my baby girl knew me and missed me and was overwhelmed by the responsibility of being a mommy–being The Mom–to such a sweet baby girl.

Whereupon her smile grew wider and, scrunching her nose, she noisily filled her pants.

Ah, love. It does move the world. And, it seems, the bowels.