Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Late Night Ideas

So here I am, it is 12:30 pm and I just could not go to bed until I completed an idea I had in my head.

Repurposing items that I bring into my home is a complete obsession. Just because something has served its purpose does not mean that it should be tossed out. Find a new purpose for it and give it a new life is our motto around this house!

So sitting next to my washing machine were 2 cloth bags, one from Rock N' Green and the other from Charlie's Soap. I knew that I could figure out some way to reuse these small cloth bags. Well, today it finally hit me, make small wet bags from them!

Not only did I now have a new use for the cloth bags, but also a new use for a bunch of pocket diapers I bought on Ebay a while back. The diapers were terrible since the touch tape was not holding the diaper on my children at all. I have been repurposing the soft part of the touch tape for some capes that I had been making and saving all of the PUL trying to figure out what to do with it.

Well here is, the awesome small drawstring wet bag that I came up with.

It was so simple, I think I sewed it in about 15 minutes. All I did was sew the PUL on 3 sides to the measurements of the bag and then sew a hem for the top (open) part of the PUL. Then I put the wrong sides together and zigzag stitched the whole way around to attach it to the detergent bag. DONE!

Help, I Need a New Title!

When I started this blog I thought that I would just use it to discuss all thing tandem nursing, but I am finding that I have so much more to say. I had attempted to have 2 blogs but that was just too much to keep track of. So I want to put the question out there and see if someone can help me with a new title.

What I am looking for is a title for my blog that will sum up all of the things that I love to write about: tandem nursing, holistic living, crafting, parenting and all of the other fun things in my life that get me out of bed each day.

Giveaway: For the person that comes up with a title that I like the best I will giveaway this beautiful non-toxic messenger style bag from Ecogear.


• organically-grown cotton canvas & rope materals

• non-toxic dyes

• sustainable wood components

• adjustable shoulder strap

• internal zipper pouch

• dual side water bottle holder




15 in. x 11.5 in. x 4 in.

All you have to do is post a comment with your idea for a title. I will be choosing the winning title on April 15th (not for taxes, for my late grandmother's birthday) at 10:00 pm central time. Hey, and while your at it why not click the link to be a follower of my blog :-)

Thanks for your help, I really appreciate it!

Monday, March 29, 2010

My T-Shirt Obsession

It is funny how a necessity has turned into a full blown obsession. A little over a year ago I decided that I wanted to try and sew my own cloth diapers. Well, about 5 minutes into looking into this online I realized that I could not afford the materials that these sites were telling me to use. Then I stumbled upon a site that showed how to make diapers from old t-shirts. I loved the idea of taking all of my husbands old shirts and making them into something new!

Now every time I look at a t-shirt I see so many endless possibilities! Because of t-shirts and my imagination I have yet to buy a birthday gift for any of my kids friends this year. For my daughters friend I made a purse from a shirt and the 2 other parties we attended I sewed capes for the little boys. I have started sewing most of the pants that Taj and Peylyn wear since we are using new (very fluffy) cloth diapers. Their other pants just won't fit over these diapers.

Here is the ugly camouflage shirt that Perry brought home the other day:

These are the pants that were made from the sleeves and the cape (too big for Taj, I made it to sell on my Etsy page) that came from the body.

I am fortunate to live in an area that is loaded with thrift stores and I love to go out and find "the perfect" shirt.

Even if you don't sew there are still so many things to do with a t-shirt. I am currently knitting a table runner with yarn that I made from cutting up t-shirts, I'll update on that when I am done. Plus, there are numerous sites and also books that I have gotten from the library on ways to repurpose old shirts.

Best of all my children see how I can take something that no one wants any more and give it a new life. Zola says that I am an artist of using t-shirts and that she hopes to be like me one day. If she only knew that she and the others are my inspiration and I strive to be as joyful and imaginative as they are.

No Pooing

Seriously, this has nothing to do with being constipated! You can give up your shampoo and conditioner and not have to have dreadlocks to do it. Have you ever taken a look at the ingredients on a conventional bottle of shampoo or conditioner? How many of those words were you able to pronounce? If you are already educated in how terrible these ingredients are for your health then I am sure that you have shopped for the really expensive "natural" hair products.

Guess what, there is another, more affordable and much healthier way to clean your hair. All you need is baking soda and apple cider vinegar.

You can google "no poo" and you will find many links to applying and mixing, but here is what I have found works for me:

I do have short hair so I only use about a half of a tablespoon of the baking soda in a small cup. To this I add a little water to make a paste that is applied to wet hair. I rub this into my scalp for a minute or two, some days longer when I am really stressed and a good head massage feels so good. Then rinse. After this I squirt my premixed 1 part apple cider vinegar to 4 parts water making sure to saturate my hair and rub it all through. I let this sit for a minute or so before rinsing. I find that I do not need to wash my hair everyday with the baking soda (and yes I do use hair products) but I do use a daily rinse of the apple cider vinegar. I just dry and style as I normally would. Some people have stated that there is an adjustment period for their hair, but I have never really noticed this. My only issue is that when I have found myself in a position of not having my "no pooing" supplies and I needed to wash my hair with regular shampoo my hair looks awful!!! I feel it takes me about 3 washings with "no poo" to get all of that residue out of my hair.

Give it a try, I love it and I use it on all of the kids (well those that have hair). I am still working on converting Perry, but now the our local grocery store has stopped carrying his favorite $8 bottle of shampoo I may have more luck. It is a comforting thought knowing the 2 ingredients that I am putting on my head on a daily basis.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Touched Too Much!!!

I have become increasingly aware of much I am touched through the day. Some days I don't mind all of the little hands on me and others I want to lock myself in the bathroom so that for just 5 minutes I don't have anyone poking at me.

For all of this touching I have noticed how my breasts have become desensitized. For crying out loud the other day I was sitting at the computer, Peylyn was napping and Zola and Ajay were sitting on the sofa watching a movie. I turned to them and in a bit of a panic I said "where is Taj?" They both started laughing hysterically at me, which is when I looked down and realized that not only was Taj sitting on my lap but he was nursing!

I feel that as a breastfeeding mom I am supposed to just hand my body over to my children, no questions asked. While I do take great pride in the fact that my body is nurturing my children both physically and emoitionally, it is still my body. I have had a lot of feelings of guilt lately for sometimes just wanting to have my body back to myself. Looking back I think that these feelings had a lot to do with why I so easily let Perry persuade me into weaning Ajay at 2 years.

Guess what...it is completely ok to have these feelings. It is completely ok to think if one more person touches me today I am going to scream! It is ok to have to take a "time out" and sit some place quiet for a moment and it is more than ok to redirect your toddler on those days when you feel like you just can't breastfeed one more person. Then do you know what you do? You pat yourself on the back for the amazing gift you are giving your children, you take a deep breath and lay down on the bed and nurse them both to sleep and watch them and realize how amazing this adventure in tandem nursing really is.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Breastfeeding for my Health?

I have barely had time to think let alone sit down and type these past few weeks. Apparently just when you realize that your family has been really healthy through the winter you will spend the month of March first battling croup in the 2 younger ones and then 4 out of the 6 family members will all have the stomach flu. It certainly has been an adventure.

I have been so happy to have some warm days so that I could finally open the windows and air out my plague infested home.

All I have to say is thank God for breastfeeding! It doesn't matter if you are nursing 1 or 4, when your child is sick it is so reassuring that what little they are keeping down it is something that is doing great things for their body. Plus, in Peylyn's case it was breastfeeding that I believe probably helped to keep her well through this stomach flu. Some how her and I managed to dodge that bullet. Would it be strange to say that I think that breastfeeding maybe did help me as well? I think that when I have sick people in the house I almost become more calm. I just stop everything and focus on that person. I don't care what the house looks like or how many dishes are in the sink, I just focus on getting that person better. So Taj was #2 in the house to get sick and we just layed around and napped and nursed as he wanted. So if stress weakens the immune system well then maybe relaxing and nursing my babies helped to boost mine.

Perry is always asking why I never catch all of these lovely illnesses that the kids drag home from school and I always joke because I never share drinks with the kids (it is my own personal thing that I think sharing drinks with anyone is gross, I don't even share with my husband) and all the antioxidants in my nightly glass of wine. Now I will have to add that breastfeeding keeps me healthy as well.

Happily everyone is finally healthy again and things are getting back to normal (whatever that is). We have had beautiful weather this week and I was so happy to finally be outside soaking up the sun and making some vitamin D.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

First Time for Everything

I just had to write because I felt so empowered today! For the first time (not counting nursing at a local cafe that is VERY breastfeeding friendly) I nursed both of my children in public today.

Well, now that I have volunteered to be a co-leader for our local Holistic Moms Network chapter I went to the mall to meet up with the other leaders this morning. The play area was in full swing as I was nursing my 5 month old Peylyn. No big deal, I breastfeed her no matter where we are.

This morning though something was up with Taj and after I nursed Peylyn I handed her to the woman I was with so that I could pay some extra attention to him. He immediately climbed up on my lap and started saying "nur, nur." I tried to distract him with the slide but he wasn't falling for it. So I gave in...

This is huge for me on two accounts: first, we haven't nursed in public since he was about 18 months old. Mostly because when we are out he is so distracted by what is going on around him. The other thing is, I wasn't sure how comfortable I was with it. I nursed Ajay (#2) until he was 2, but at some point between a year and 18 months I was not comfortable nursing him outside the house. I guess I was a closet nurser and maybe I was with Taj too, but honestly he rarely ever asked to nurse when we were out. Second, I have never nursed both so publicly (in a place like the mall where you know not everyone feels as passionate about breastfeeding as I do). Honestly though it felt great! My worst fears had not come true, people did not cover their children's eyes, no one ran screaming for the door and after just a little while Taj was happy and went off to play. I don't know why I have not just feared nursing an older child in public but also showing people that yes I am nursing both of my children.

When Taj was asking to nurse this morning, the first thing that popped into my head were the words of a woman I had just met the other day. Last week I was at a babywearing meeting (at a local & VERY pro-breastfeeding cafe) and I had just nursed Peylyn and Taj came over and began to nurse and a woman sitting across from me told me how beautiful that was and that I was giving her hope that she could do the same for her toddler and soon to be born baby.

Is there a greater compliment than that? I love that by being so open about what I feel is right for us, I may be giving another woman the encouragement that she has been looking for to tandem nurse too.