How to Go to the Bathroom Sans Baby

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I am a stay at home mom with no family nearby. This leads to a whole boat load of problems.

For example:

  • How do I fold laundry with one hand? – babywearing
  • How do I clean a toilet when the baby is awake? – babywearing in a back carry
  • How do I cook dinner? – babywearing in a back carry

and the most important one…

  • HOW DO I GO TO THE BATHROOM?*

potty_walkerWalkers, bouncers, high chairs, and bumbos are a gift from above for the stay at home mom who just needs to pee! On most days I put the exercise saucer into the bathroom upstairs and put the walker into the bathroom downstairs.

The exercise saucer is great to keep my needy daughter occupied while I sing to her when I am in the shower. She loves show tunes sung in a very bad Russian accent!

The walker is great for quick potty breaks because I can still see and talk to her and I am normally done and my hands are washed before she figures out how to back out of the bathroom.

In a pinch I have put the bumbo on the floor, or wheeled her high chair in the bathroom.

If you have an older baby, and your baby area is “kid-proofed” you can always do the spoiled kid method.

spoiledSome may say my daughter is spoiled, but I say whatever it takes to keep her busy for 5 minutes while I have to go!!

On a side note you should never pay for a new exercisesaucer, bouncer, bumbo, or high chair. Do you research on which models have been recalled and then hit your local flea market, garage sale, craigslist, or mom swap. The total cost for our daughter’s high chair, bumbo, exercisesaucer, and bouncer was $52.

*While I have gone to the bathroom with my daughter in a front carry when I was out and about and had no other option I do not recommend making this a habit while you are at home.

We would love to hear about your ingenious ways to go to the bathroom without a baby!

 

 

 


Ear Infections: What You Need to Know

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As many of you may or may not have read on our facebook page our little miss caught an ear infection in each ear while on vacation in South Carolina. Let me tell you, it is not pretty!

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According to the Mayo Clinic here is the definition of an ear infection,

An ear infection (acute otitis media) is most often a bacterial or viral infection that affects the middle ear, the air-filled space behind the eardrum that contains the tiny vibrating bones of the ear. Children are more likely than adults to get ear infections.

Here is what I have learned about ear infections and infants thus far!

  • When you child is abnormally fussy and spikes a fever do not hesitate to take them to their doctor or urgent care as soon as humanly possible. 

Stella woke us up at 3am and was howling and completely congested and miserable. When I took her temp it was only 100.6. By the time 9am rolled around she was more lethargic and her temp spiked up to above 103. She never touched her ears and we had no clue it was an ear infection until the doctor looked in her ears! Again when a rising fever is involved go directly to the doctor’s office or urgent care.

  • After the first 24 hours of antibiotics you wee one should be doing much better but keep taking the antibiotics as prescribed.

Even if your wee one is no longer symptomatic still give their antibiotic. There is a risk the symptoms can come back or the child may develop an immunity to the antibiotics if stopped early.

  • Any hope of normal sleep will go out the window

Do not expect your little bundle of misery to sleep through the night for the next 7-10 days. The middle ear sucks at life and will cause your child great discomfort when they are horizontal for long periods of time, and especially at night. Your child will most likely wake up more frequently from pain and is looking for comfort.

Ear infections frequently are painful because of inflammation and buildup of fluids in the middle ear. – Mayo Clinic

  • Our doctor recommended putting the baby to sleep in the car seat in her crib.

We haven’t tried that option yet, but the theory is that it keeps her upright. This causes her nose to drain instead of building up pressure while she lays flat.

  • Get a humidifier for the baby’s room

A humidifier will keep the nasal passages moist to prevent mucus from drying, compacting, and thus causing pain

  • A warm compress on the ear to lessen pain

Try a warm wash cloth over the baby’s ears to help ease their pain and discomfort

  • Try non-medicated plain saline drops in the the infant’s nose

Again this is a measure to be used to keep the mucus following. Go go snot rockets!

Most episodes will resolve within 3 months, but 30 – 40% of children may have recurrent episodes. Only 5 – 10% of episodes last longer than 1 year. – NY Time Health

  • If you go the antibiotic route please be prepared for a yeast infection. If you are nursing start taking probiotics immediately. Whether you are nursing or not start putting virgin expeller pressed coconut oil on the diaper area (if you are nursing also put some on your nipples a couple of time throughout the day)
  • Chocolate cake will solve everything

While your child is healing it will take a toll on your sanity. When in doubt chocolate cake and gummy bears makes all of the fussiness and crying better!

We would love to hear your ear infection survival stories!

-Rachel


You Are A Good Parent! Now Get Off The Internet!

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I only have twenty minutes to write this before my little sensitive bundle of joy will start screaming.

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The past two-ish weeks of my life have been consumed with finding the perfect nap and night time sleep solution for our little family. There are dozens and dozens of books, bookmarked webpage,s and forums that I have yet to visit. The amount of information is daunting, and I have only had time to skim headlines. Complete sidebar, if you are writing a book on how to fix a child’s sleep habits, do us all a favor and make it bullet points. I don’t have time to read cutesy little antidotes while I am mired in the trenches of hell trying to persuade my precious little flower to sleep!

Some researchers insist that one should never let their child cry. Other studies point to post-traumatic stress disorder being linked to children who cry. My all time favorite is the forums that rip women to shreds because they found something that works for their family.

After spending two weeks waking up everyone morning with Matt’s favorite phrase, “Fuck My Life”, I decided this has got to end. Everything I read made me feel like a failure of a mother because I don’t want to co-sleep, and there are quite a few nights I just wanted to shove her face into the mattress and scream, “SLEEP MOTHERFUCKER!”

So here is my ode to all of the overly stressed, tired, and super grumpy parents and parental figures out there:

Y ou should understand infants and children suck most of the time, and that is why we love them.

ne in a while you are going to want to kill them, and that is ok as long as you don’t actually do it 😉

nder no circumstance should you ever take your child’s behavior towards you personally. Their brain is still smaller than your labradoodle.

 

ll other parents will give you their advice. Just nod and smile and don’t really listen.

emember just as you get used to one way your child will completely change and you will have to start all over again.

veryone struggles with parenthood. I do not care what anyone says this is true of all parents.

 

A t times you are going to feel like giving up, and that is ok. Call for help from a neighbor, friend, family, coworker, online friend, or anyone you feel comfortable asking for help. It is ok if you need a hand or just someone to witness how much having kids sucks.

ood times will come. If you need to print that out and hang it on every mirror in your house.

O ne day they will be all grown up and you will only remember the good times. I know that doesn’t help at the moment, but keep that in the back of your head!

O ne source will tell you crying is bad, and the other source will tell you not crying is bad. Screw them both and do what you can mentally and emotionally handle. Everyone else be damned.

D on’t forget US Army Rangers and the elite military forces of the world would crack after an entire night of listening to an infant scream.

 

eople on the internet suck even more than raising an infant sucks. Don’t let them make you feel like less of a parent because they don’t agree with what you are doing.

A ll children at some point suck. Once you accept that this is going to suck at some point you will be pleasnatly surprised at how well you can handle a sucky situation.

esist the urge to read every study on the internet. If you must read them first find out who paid to have the study completed and who is paying the researchers salaries. That should give you a good clue what the study is about before even reading the article!

ventually this will seem easy breezy and then you have your second child!

N ever judge another mother who is trying her hardest to stay afloat. You were once there!

ake some time and remember this shit sucks. You are doing the best you can.

For the love of everything that is good in the world…

YOU ARE A GOOD PARENT! NOW GET OFF THE INTERNET!

 

 


ANNNNNNNND We’re Back!

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After a few number of days without sleep this family was again on hold.

Thankfully I think we have found a solution for us!

The answer is read about 4 baby sleep books and take a little piece of advice from each book, mix it with some sage advice from friends and VIOLA! Sleep solution!

Since we are only on Day 3 of sleep solution 529onadime style we will wait a few more days to give a full report!

In the meantime we have giveaways, more photo blogs, and product reviews coming up this weekend!

-Rachel


It is a Great Time To Have Kids!

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I have been trying to avoid speaking about the recent events in Texas and Boston out of respect for the mourning. However, after reading my Facebook feed I have found it near impossible to not say something. My Facebook feed was littered with people who were to scared to take their kids out of the home, and how this was a terrible time to bring a child into the world. As a new mother to a very active little girl I couldn’t disagree more.

According to the World Bank life expectancy is the highest is has ever been in history. On the CDC list of causes of death homicide and terrorist attacks are not even listed! The number one cause of death in the United States is heart disease.

There is no Jack the Ripper, no warring factions of Huns, and it is no longer legal in the state of Missouri to kill a Mormon. For your information it took them until 1976 to recende that law. Wikipedia 

I gave my daughter life so that she could live. This is, in my opinion, the best time to be born. If my daughter wants to work at Starbucks covered in tattoos and with huge piercings she can. If my daughter wants to swim with sharks and go on safari in the same day she can. If my daughter wants to vote, refrain from child-bearing, and become CEO of a billion dollar company she can. There is no other point in history where my daughter could dare to dream of such lofty aspirations, have the support of society in general, and know that her family will embrace and encourage these goals.

– Rachel

 


Want to improve your social life, have a baby

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To further complicate the experience of being first time parents, we moved less than one month after our daughter was born.  While we didn’t have a huge social circle in Monterey, we did have a very supportive core and the ability to fall back on the military for support.  Three weeks later, we were new residents of San Jose and Rachel had zero resources for support.  Our closest support was now my mother who was a plane ride away.

In the first few weeks in our new home Rachel focused on finding other new mothers in our area to share experiences with and seek advice on parenting.

The survey showed that while childless women have an average of 13 friends, the number swells to 22 in the year after following the arrival of a child.

We quickly found strangers and co-workers who were also first time parents.  Our ability to easily make friends was based on our mutual situation.  Paniced parents seeking support from others in the same position.

It found that 53 per cent of new mothers felt it was surprisingly easy to make friends after having a baby, and 70 per cent of those said it was because they had so much ‘in common’.

Rachel turned to Meetup and Facebook to connect with other new mothers in our area.  She quickly discovered a core group of mothers facing the same fears and concerns that she was struggling with.  While not everyone fit into the ideal friend category, they all shared very similar situations and their experiences helped quell many of our concerns.

‘You need people who can understand what you’re going through and can offer both emotional and practical support – whether you want a shoulder to cry on, a friend to offload on, or just reassurance that you are doing things right.

Nearly five months later, Rachel has made amazing progress finding new friends in our new town.   With other mothers to share experiences, we have quickly built a core of other families to share the highs and lows of raising our wee one.

-Matt

Source Mail Online


It’s not just baby talk, it’s a conversation

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Super Baby

Super Baby!

Although our daughter is only four months old, I have started notice her ability to respond to our “conversations”.

While I have never been one for baby talk (although I have learned she enjoys a good TEE HEE), I do frequently ramble on at length in a nearly one-sided conversation.  It’s not that I expect her to respond, but when I speak her eyes lock on to mine and I feel a basic connection.  She responds with smiles, a squeak, or a gurgle.  Be it my imagination, but when she attempts to mimic my sounds I believe she is attempting to communicate with me on a her own very basic level.

We did our best not to obsess on parenting manuals and instead focus on finding a path that suited our individual goals and beliefs.  This week Stella’s grandmother forwarded us a great article discussing the importance of speaking to your child.

Another idea, however, is creeping into the policy debate: that the key to early learning is talking — specifically, a child’s exposure to language spoken by parents and caretakers from birth to age 3, the more the better. It turns out, evidence is showing, that the much-ridiculed stream of parent-to-child baby talk — Feel Teddy’s nose! It’s so soft! Cars make noise — look, there’s a yellow one! Baby feels hungry? Now Mommy is opening the refrigerator! — is very, very important.

While the article focuses on the differences in socioeconomic backgrounds, the research states that the more diverse the range of vocabulary the child is exposed to early on, the more likely they are to develop a higher IQ and excel in their schoolwork.

By age 3, a poor child would have heard 30 million fewer words in his home environment than a child from a professional family. And the disparity mattered: the greater the number of words children heard from their parents or caregivers before they were 3, the higher their IQ and the better they did in school. TV talk not only didn’t help, it was detrimental.

As I explain to my infant the benefits of positive vs negative ground electrical systems on a vintage British motorcycles, I have no expectations that she’ll develop into a genius superbaby, but I do believe it will benefit her in the long run.  If I wanted to learn a foreign language as quickly as possible a full emerson in the language would provide the quickest results.  Sure, her brain is still developing, but just as she finds her feet or nose, she is discovering how to communicate with us.

The NY Times blog is a great read and offered quite a few good discussion points for Rachel and I.  While there may be some correlation between low income and more affluent families, I believe (as with many, many parenting issues) this comes down to making the choice to be as active in your child’s life and career allows.

-Matt

Source – NY Times