Extreme Separation Anxiety

Posted 08-31-2012 at 11:48 AM by whitneywalters

My three year daughter has developed a severe case of separation anxiety lately. We have no idea what caused it either. She used to love going to her Sunday school class but one Sunday about five weeks ago she decided she did not like it anymore. She started bawling when I took her in, clung to me and just said she needed me over and over again. So I let her come upstairs but that only lasted a little while before she was being loud so I ended up going down in the nursery and staying with her. The next week we tried again and she reacted the same way, this time I ended up staying with her in class, the first half of class she wanted nothing to do with the other kids, she sat on my lap with her face buried in my shoulder, eventually she started interacting a little and the last ten minuets she would would do stuff with out me right there.

I took some time with her teacher ( who is also the head of the Children’s Department at our church ) and asked her if she knew if anything had happened during class to make her afraid to go in but she could not think of anything. She did offer to let Kairi try to cry it out but I am not comfortable with that in the least. I do not do it as babies, I am not going to start as a toddler. I know her cry and she does not calm down after a couple minutes. She would scream until we came back, I won’t do that to her and I do not think it is fair to the other people in the class.

Diaper Swapers

Do Unto Others

Posted 08-31-2012 at 11:35 AM by Krista

I’ve grown up with the principle of the Golden Rule touted around me. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Put simply (and the way my Mama would say it) treat others how you want to be treated. It seems easy enough to comprehend but is so much harder in actual practice. I’m sure most people would say that they believe in the Golden Rule but I don’t think you can claim conviction if you don’t practice the principle. That’s like saying you believe in democracy and not voting.

My husband and I have gone through difficulties—as has any couple married for eight years. Or, heck, eight months!—and the one thing that strikes me is that our complaints about the other person are so similar.

“You’re not nice to me.”

“You don’t give me space when I’m mad.”

“You don’t comfort me when I’m upset.”

Baby Wearing Profile: Mei Tai

Posted 08-31-2012 at 11:27 AM by HollyRay

I think now is a good time to do a series that evaluates some different kinds of babywearing. Part 1 is one of my favorites the Mei Tai!

What is a Mei Tai?

It’s one of the most popular of the Asian styles of carrier. The body of the carrier is rectangular and has either four straps originating from each corner or 2 straps originating from the top corners and a single bottom band. Most tie, but buckle-tai’s are becoming ever more popular.

What Age is the Carrier Suited For?

One of the great things about this style of carrier is it can be used from infant through toddler hood, I’ve even worn my 4 year old in my Mei Tai! Obviously not all positions are good for all ages, infants often need to be placed in the carrier in a way that doesn’t force them to straddle to far. Some brands of Mei Tai’s have inserts for this purpose.

What Positions Can You Use?

A bunch! Front, back, and side carries can be utilized with most brands of Mei Tai.

Just Don’t Say “XYZ”

Posted 08-30-2012 at 01:01 PM by HollyRay

As wives we often talk about family and close friend problems, sooner or later someone says “I just learned I don’t say anything about XYZ, and just nod when I am hurt or offended.”

There is a reason that in-law jokes exist, because joining two people from different families can bite the big one. Sometimes your mom hates him, sometimes his dad thinks your fat and lazy, I know one woman who recently said she raised her sons to be independent and they could clean and do laundry so their wives were just wasted space as far as she was concerned.

I’ve noticed if a mama isn’t having a problem with a family member, it’s a friend.  Friends who are passionate, friends you feel judged, friends who are uneducated or narrow minded. The truth is friendships are just as hard to maintain as family ties. With all this hardship more and more mama’s are choosing to just smile and nod their way through life.

I bring this up for a few reasons, first is that right? Should we skirt topics that offend? I’m conflicted. On one hand there is no reason to start a debate when it’s not needed, and if a subject is going to reduce a group of women to screaming cave people then maybe it’s not the best topic to broach. However, silence is the well meaning double sided coin, on one hand we have momentary peace on the other we don’t really move forward intellectually. Should we instead approach all topics with an open mind no matter how sure we are in our stance?

Making the Most of My Garden

Posted 08-30-2012 at 11:15 AM by whitneywalters

My family lives in southern Iowa and as everyone probably knows we are currently suffering from a major drought. Our garden took a huge hit because of this so I am doing whatever I can to make the most of the produce we are getting. This year we grew summer squash, zucchini squash, tomatoes, green, red and yellow peppers, beets, cucumbers, potatoes, pumpkins and dill.

Both of the squashes did really well even though it has been so dry. We have way more than anyone would need and I hate letting anything go to waste. We have been giving it away, making bread, cake, stirfry, adding it to pasta dishes, soup and when we get sick of eating I have been freezing it for later use.

As for the cucumbers, whatever we do not eat in cucumber salad or cucumbers with ranch, we make into pickles. We have made both refrigerator pickles and canned pickles. My family eats pickles like you would not believe so no cucumbers are going to waste here.  The dill was also used in the pickles.

A Mind of Her Own

Posted 08-30-2012 at 10:56 AM by Krista

My oldest daughter is three years old, and boy is she a lot of sugar and spice! (“Everything nice” doesn’t really apply to her most days). She is also a little diva. It’s funny I always said that I would never push my girls towards the girly, princess and pink type of thing. My husband begrudgingly respected this, but he was oh so glad when she began exploring it on her own. The term “girly girl” just doesn’t seem to cover it. My Ali is a girl that, on some days we cannot convince to wear anything but a dress.

She loves to accessorize too; the more glitzy the better. She is especially fond of hair bows and necklaces (and yet, oddly enough, likes a fairy tattoo. Maybe she isn’t old enough to think these things clash?) and now everything has to “match”. Her idea of matching is interesting to me. Basically, matching just means it’s the same color at this point. However, there are days that she picks out her own clothes and in the morning she is satisfied with how well the outfit matches, but by afternoon she has decided they don’t.

Practicing Financial Self-Control

Posted 08-29-2012 at 12:00 PM by Krista

I wrote recently about being on a budget. It is only day two, and while it does feel easier there is a huge part of me that thinks: we can’t do this. I can’t do this. What is keeping to a budget, really? Besides allocating money for bills, groceries, gas and the like it’s really just about one thing: self-control. My husband and I are on an allowance system (I know—it feels like I’m back in the fifth grade!) and while it is bugging me, he is very nonchalant about the whole thing.

“I don’t really get that much, anyway,” he says.

Ha! I thought the same thing of myself until I actually started looking at the numbers. I scrutinized our account very closely and kept track for two months before putting a budget into place. What I found amazed me. I never realized how much money we spent on eating out. That first month, we vowed to cut back, and we did so—but then our grocery bill practically doubled.

How Soap Works

Posted 08-29-2012 at 11:45 AM by HollyRay

There are days when a science lesson is necessary, and today is one of those days.

Washing your hands, with or without soap? Does it matter? Does it only take a minute? The answers may surprise you!

Does the type of soap used matter? 

Yes and No. Soap works in interesting ways, at the VERY basic description it works by simply attaching to dirt but slipping off skin so dirt is easily down the drain.  This goes for all types of soaps.

What about Antibacterial soap?

It works the same as regular soap, with the difference of it needing to be on your hands for TWO minutes before you rinse the soap off in order for it to actually kill bacteria.

I Made Syrup

Posted 08-29-2012 at 11:30 AM by whitneywalters

I have a large Italian plum tree growing in my backyard and each year I make a couple of batches of jelly with it. The kids always loves the jelly and it is usually does not last long.  My tree is heavy with plums this year and I knew I needed to come up with something other then jelly to make with them all. My mom gave me the idea of making a syrup with them.

My kids love having pancakes and they like trying new types of syrup so I decided to give it a try. We could not find a recipe that we wanted to use so I just did it the same way the jelly was and left out the pectin. It was five and half cups of the plum juice and seven and half cups of sugar. Then we let it boil for half and hour and it was done. I was really pleased with the results. It is so yummy! The batch made five jars plus some extra that I put into a tupperware dish and stored in the fridge. I gave a jar to my parents and a jar to my sister.

The kids and I had chocolate chip pancakes the next day and we tried the syrup. It was delicious! Everyone loved it. I still have a ton of plums left and I will be making another batch because I do not think that the one I made is going to last very long. My husband as already requested that I make french toast bake

A Chance

Posted 08-27-2012 at 12:57 PM by whitneywalters

You may remember that a few months back I wrote a blog about trying to come to terms with not having anymore children. My husband was dead set against having a fifth child after everything we went through having our youngest. Well, things have changed since then and there is a chance at a fifth now.

I have spent hours and hours reading everything I could get my hands on that talked about cholestasis. I read medical information and stories from other moms that had more children after dealing with this condition. Then I started showing my husband what I was finding. We had a really long talk and we decided that we may have another baby some day. He wants to find a local doctor to talk to  that has dealt with this condition before and see what they say the risks are for us. If the doctor thinks we would be safe in trying to have another one then he would be okay with possibly having another child in a few years. We already know that the chances are pretty high that I would get the condition again but this time around we would at least have a doctor that has dealt with it previously.

We made the choice to not even talk to a doctor or try for another child until after our ten year anniversary. We want to be able to go on a child free trip. Our ten year is in three years and all the kids would be old enough at that time for me to feel comfortable leaving them with a family member. While it is hard to put that baby want on ice for a few years I know it will be worth it in the long run.