Friday, 24 July 2015

Parker at 6 Months

How has half a year gone by?  I seriously have no idea.  Being a mom is the strangest thing.  Time has flown by and yet I don't remember a time without Parker.  Becoming a mom has been the best decision of my life.  I knew I would love my baby, but I didn't realize how much.  Sometimes my heart literally hurts I love him so much.  
 

Weight: 10 lbs 14.5oz

Height: 23.5 inches

Feeding: I have been so focused on getting him to gain weight.  He generally eats every 2 hours during the day.  He eats between 6-7 ounces first thing in the morning.  I did pump and feed him for one day as per the suggestion by the pediatrician and he generally only ate 3-4 ounces at a time after that, but he eats much more frequently that a normal 6 month baby, so I think that makes up for it and he's still getting his ounces in.

Sleeping:  This kid can sleep through anything.  We were at the cottage in a room with no roof and there was some drinking going on right outside his room (so it was loud, very loud) and Parker slept soundly through it.  He still goes to bed around 10 and sometimes wakes up around 7:30 but most often I wake him up at 8.  

Napping has been a struggle.  We've had some good days and then he will have a day where he refuses to sleep.  He's had a few days though with a good 2+ hour nap in the morning and an afternoon nap as well so I'm hoping we are starting to get into that routine...

Clothes:  He's still chillin out in 0-3 month clothes, no big deal that he's six months old.... But honestly this is the size that I have the most clothes in and since he's still Pukey Parker and I change his outfit 3 times a day this is fine with me.

Diapers:  Still size 1 of disposables.  I think they go to 14 pounds so we have a bit to go, but I'm still working on the jumbo box that I bought when I was pregnant since we typically cloth diaper.

Likes:  His toys.  I can leave him alone lots with a toy on the floor and he's quite entertained.  I always give him something in the car too and he will play a way with it until he falls asleep.  His favourite is a cloth frog and he has a plastic owl toy that he's really loving these days.

The usual - baths, mommy, daddy, being naked

Dislikes:  Naps - sometimes.  

Milestones: Rolls over both ways now.  He can sit up for a little bit on his own, if he's in the right mood and isn't distracted.  He tries to pull himself up by himself if he's propped up at all. 

Things Dad Says:
I had put Parker to bed and he was crying.  I usually let him cry for a bit before I calm him down as he will often just fall asleep.  Ryan looks at me and says "Sometimes you just have to rub his back" as if he is all knowing!  Sure enough, Ryan went in, rubbed Parker's back for a minute or so and Parker fell asleep.   


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Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Are You Breastfeeding?

"Gimme some of that milk, mama"
If I had a nickel for every time I was asked this question...

It actually blows my mind how many times I have been asked by complete strangers or acquaintances whether or not I'm breastfeeding.  Once I say that I am, they say things like "good, that's the best thing for the baby."  Luckily, by breastfeeding I'm usually answering in the way that they are hoping I will answer, but I always wonder what they would say if I said no, I'm formula feeding.  

I feel incredibly privileged to be able to nurse Parker.  It definitely wasn't an easy road for us as Parker had to learn how to nurse and in the beginning would fall asleep within 5 minutes of starting.  I never knew whether he was just sleepy or had actually eaten enough.  I had to use a nipple shield and then wean from the shield.  I had to pump and pump and pump to build my supply.  However, I do have a good supply and I never went through any excruciating pain while nursing that I have heard so much about.  I feel lucky to of had the experience that I have had, and now Parker and I are in a good rhythm. 

Breastfeeding is difficult for so many women.  And although we all may know deep down that "breast is best", sometimes for your own sanity, it may not be.  It's not just breast milk that mothers have to take into consideration, it's their own well being, their babies well being and what makes their life livable.  Breastfeeding isn't always easy and as mothers if it is making our lives more exhausting, taking away from simply enjoying our children, maybe it's not the best thing.

So when people that I hardly know (or don't know at all, because that's happened!) ask me this question, I'm glad I can say that I breastfeed, because I am proud of it.  But I feel for those mothers who don't or can't because sometimes their decision isn't respected.  From the outside we don't know what someone else has gone through and how much they may have struggled with the decision to stop. 

There is so much judgement when it comes to the decisions that we make as mothers.  I was judgy before I had a baby and now realize that I really had no right to be.  But even now, I know that I sometimes judge and see other mothers judging and I want to stop.  Parenting is hard.  Every day there are decisions that have to be made.  How to feed, when to feed, whether to sleep train etc.  At the end of the day, every single one of us is doing what we think is best for our child and our family.  I will make different decisions than each of my friends will, and that's ok.  Guess what, all of our kids will probably grow up to be just fine despite these differences.  

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Monday, 13 July 2015

When a Baby Naps


A napping baby is a beautiful thing.

I have been truly blessed with Parker.  He is definitely what most would call an easy baby.  He is very content most of the time, he slept through the night at about 3 months and he goes to bed without too much fuss.  But getting him to nap has been a struggle.  During the day he hates missing the action!

Since he sleeps so well at night it isn't usually a huge concern, but I also know that sleep does a baby good, especially a tiny baby who needs to grow!

These past few days I have put him down for a nap and he has actually gone to sleep!  I'm not going to get my hopes up because sometimes he behaves one way for a week and then reverts back to his old ways.  But it's so nice to be able to do some things while he naps!  I can work out, tidy up, blog....

Parker boy please keep up this napping trend.  I love spending time with you when you're awake but I also love being able to do my own thing for an hour at a time!  (Oh ya those dream two hour naps aren't really happening yet...)
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Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Cloth Diapering 101


Half of my pregnancy was spent reading about cloth diapering, trying to decide whether I wanted to do it and trying to figure out what diapers were best. So I thought a little update on our experience with it might be helpful.

I started out with about 15 used BumGenius diapers, 6 new bumgenius, 2 Kawaii microfibre, 2 Kawaii bamboo and 2 Kawaii heavy wetters.  They are all pocket diapers.

Because Parker was so tiny, I ended up buying 12 used Kawaii newborns (6-22lbs) for $25.

I also bought the Ubbi diaper pail and 2 Ubbi cloth pail bags, and a small wet bag for when we go out.  I also want to buy a large wet bag for when we go away, when Parker is with grandparents for the night or for future babysitters.

As it turned out, the diapers I bought used needed the elastics replaced.  Bumgenius diapers are fairly simple to do this for, but I'm still in the process of doing it.  I find that each diaper takes me about an hour to replace the elastic, so although I can do it, actually finding an hour where I'm not doing anything else has been tricky.  If you are buying used diapers, this is something to be cautious of if you have no interest in replacing the elastics.  

Anyways, so far I'm really liking cloth diapering.  Obviously, it has already saved me lots of money!  Buying diapers when Parker didn't fit into the cloth was so frustrating!  I do have some leaking issues (especially with the used Kawaiis I bought, they may have to be stripped.)  A lot of my leaking issues are just caused by not changing his diaper quickly enough.  You really have to change them every 2 hours.  I ended up buying 12 bamboo inserts from Kawaii.  Bamboo is more absorbent than microfibre and I find it makes a big difference.  However, when stocking up on diapers, bamboo takes a lot longer to dry, so I'm glad I don't only have bamboo or else I would be waiting 3 days for dry diapers!  

My routine:

  • Every 2-3 days I wash diapers
  • Throw diapers in wash and remove inserts.  Make sure any velcro tabs are attached so they don't stick to inserts.
  • Cold rinse
  • Hot wash using a small amount of Nature Clean detergent so that there is no build up
  • Warm rinse (my machine doesn't rinse in warm so I run a short wash with no soap)
  • You need to keep rinsing until all the soap is gone, I find with the one extra rinse it works for me as long as I don't use too much detergent
  • Hang to dry in laundry room, or even better on the line as they dry faster and the sun bleaches the stains
  • Sometimes I will throw inserts only in the dryer if they aren't drying quickly enough
  • Once dry, I stuff the diapers with inserts so that they are ready to go
I don't find the extra laundry a big deal at all!  So far Parker is exclusively breast fed which makes it super easy as there is no pre-rinse required, I can throw the diaper straight in the wash without removing any poop!  Let's just say I'm not in a rush to get him on solids because of this!  I have purchased a diaper sprayer for when that day comes.

I find I like the Bumgenius diapers because they are trim and I actually think they are super cute.  The Kawaii diapers are a bit bulkier but they are nice diapers as well and besides the newborn ones (which have probably already been through a few kids) I don't seem to have leaking issues.  I bought the BumGenius when they were buy 5 get one free so I got a bit of a deal.  Kawaii diapers are much cheaper, so it's definitely nice to get some of those to save money.

I haven't even attempted overnight yet and always put Parker in disposables.  I also sometimes put him in disposables if we are going out as they can typically last longer than 2 hours and I know that I likely won't have any leaks. 

Parker rarely gets any sort of rash with the cloth diapers, and when he was just in disposables I found that he often had a bit of a red bum.

I would definitely recommend cloth diapering to people.  It's not as difficult as you might think it is and they are pretty dang cute, even if they give your baby a big booty.

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