I like crafty things. Even better, I like an excuse to buy crafty things. So the last time I was ordering from KAM Snaps, I noticed that they now have do-it-yourself fabric covered button kits and, oh hey, they randomly ended up in my shopping cart along with the snaps I actually needed. I immediately tried them out as soon as my daughter went to bed, and was shocked at how absolutely FAST you can make these—less than a minute per button, and you can use them in a million different ways. The equipment to make these is tiny, and your local fabric or craft store probably has button making kits as well.
- Fabric scraps—this is a great way to use up small scraps that are sitting around taking up space, not that I know this from experience or anything…
- Buttons and button making kit—you should have a round button front, a button back, a small, flexible plastic “bowl” and something similar to a plastic thimble in your kit.
- Scissors—for cutting things
I have been a breastfeeding mother for a total of seventy five months, split up between four children. I am currently pregnant with my fifth child and plan to nurse this baby for at least eighteen months. Three of those months I tandem nursed my first two children. I have breastfed while pregnant, through a miscarriage that ended in a d&c, with a cover ( did not last long ), without a cover, working out of the home, in public, in church and pretty much everywhere you can think of.
Overall, my breastfeeding experience has been a good one. I had very little problems when it came to breastfeeding. I have dealt with thrush and mastitis but those are the only two health issues I have had.
My mom makes awesome lasagna. Despite the fact that I have been out of my parents house for over 15 years now, and married for almost 12, I have never before attempted to make it. It intimidated me. It is one of those things that is so good at home, in it’s original environment, that it’s hard to imagine that any other version could do justice to the original. Well, after watching Garfield for several weeks now, I got a craving for lasagna so I decided to try it. I first called my mom for the recipe and she emailed it to me. I made sure to list all the ingredients on my grocery list and made sure to plan to make it on a day when I would have the time, because like most good meals, it can take longer than a half hour to make.
This recipe is not sized up for feeding a large group, however, it does use a 9X13 pan and is very filling. There are 6 in my family, although 2 do not eat full sized portions yet. My family can easily get 2 dinners out of one pan of this lasagna, especially when paired with a salad. If you are feeding a smaller family, you might be able to get even more meals out of this one recipe. In addition to the pan of lasagna, there is a lot of leftover sauce and other ingredients. So after the lasagna is put together the leftover ingredients are used to make a second dish for a third meal.
1lb of lasagna noodles, cooked, drained and rinsed
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove of garlic, minced
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 lb each of ground beef and ground sausage
1 28oz can of diced Italian tomatoes
3 6oz cans of Italian tomato paste
2 cups of water
Posted 11-26-2013 at 09:55 AM by angelaw
After I gave birth to the twins via surrogacy, the parents asked if I would pump milk and send it to them. Of course I agreed. I don’t know if I realized what a commitment it would be, but knowing that I was giving them an amazing gift kept me going strong. I pumped every three hours round the clock for 6 months, collecting approximately 60-70 ounces daily that I would freeze and then ship to them once a week. I appreciated the extra calorie burn that came with making milk and I was quickly down to well below my pre-pregnancy weight in no time!
After the six month mark, I had some issues with the parents and I had decided to stop pumping and shipping to them. However, since I was pumping so often, just stopping would have caused some extreme engorgement. I chose to continue to pump and store the milk, but to slow down significantly on how often I would pump. I was pretty much weaning myself from the pump.
By the time I was done pumping completely (around 12 months postpartum), I had built up quite a stash of milk. I had heard from a lady I worked with about moms looking online for breast milk donations for their little ones. I decided to check it out. I will admit that at the time (before Facebook and other social media sites were a big deal) I had a tough time finding moms in need of milk. I, instead, came across many men who were looking for the milk for, um… “personal reasons”. After posting an ad on one site that I had milk available, I finally started getting some emails from somewhat local moms looking for milk.
Posted 11-22-2013 at 07:21 AM by angelaw
I guess I never really thought about it until recently, but there are HUGE savings for the breastfeeding mom’s family over using formula. I have nursed my two boys for well past their first year of life (youngest is 26 months and going strong!) and have never supplemented with formula. I honestly didn’t know how much it cost until I looked it up to make sure I was accurate before writing this blog.
I am part of an online baby and children’s resale group and noticed a lot more demand for formula. Even at a ‘discount’ mothers are paying around $15-17 a can from other moms on the site. I have heard that a can usually lasts around 3 days maybe up to 5 and that the retail of the average can of formula is around $25. So, just by nursing exclusively the first six months, I saved my family approximately $1500! Now, I’m sure that if I were to have chosen formula, I would have used coupons and shopped sales, so that may not be an exact. But, I think that my estimate is pretty close to the savings I have benefited from by breastfeeding and what I figured above was just for the first six months each time.
I won’t lie and say that there are no costs when you choose to breastfeed. I, myself, bought a breast pump and around 5 nursing bras and a couple nursing tank tops. I also would consider the increase in the cost I saw when I went to the grocery because of my ‘nursing mom’s appetite’. But, if I am supposed to add all of those up when comparing breastfeeding over formula feeding, I should probably consider all the bottles, bottle cleaning tools, drying rack, purified water, etc. that also come with formula feeding.
First, I do not consider myself a minimalist. I do however consider myself thrifty, my husband would say cheap, and often, thrifty and minimalist tendencies go hand in hand. That’s why even though I am not a minimalist, I have a minimal amount of diapers. I have always had two kids in cloth diapers at the same time. I have never had more than 20 diapers at any one time. I have always only purchased and used the absolute bare minimum of diapers I needed for my kids. But there are drawbacks to this. One of the drawbacks is that laundry must be done very frequently. Then, because of that, it’s possible to run out of diapers. And, all that washing over and over and over is hard on the diapers. I have learned that when it comes to cloth diapers, there are good reasons not to be minimalist about them.
I have to do laundry every day. My routine is pretty simple, but the entire process can take several hours. First, I have to get the overnight diapers off the two kids. This requires that I make sure I have at least one diaper for each still clean. After changing them, I put the load of diaper laundry in the washer and run a single rinse cycle. I keep the diapers in a dry pail and don’t rinse after I dump dirty diapers, so this initial rinse cycle is important to ensure they get clean. This takes about a half hour to run. After that, I run a full wash cycle, with detergent. This takes another half hour or so. Then, I hang them to dry, assuming it’s nice out. It takes about 10 minutes or so to hang the entire load. Then, the amount of time it takes to dry depends on how warm and dry and sunny it is out, but it takes a few hours. I have AIOs now, which take longer. Often, I have to pull at least two off the line and run them in the dryer for a short time in order to change the kids, because I have run out of diapers before the process is finished. While I can still manage other tasks while waiting for cycles to finish or for the diapers to finish drying on the line, it still takes up a large portion of my day, every day.
As I mentioned, I often run out of diapers before they are totally dry. I have heard it said that having cloth eliminates the late night runs to the store for a package of diapers. It is true that all I have to do is wash them to get a new diaper, the reality is that having my child run around with no diaper on for
Now that you have your diaper stash you may be trying to figure out where to store it all. One thing about cloth diapers is that they take up a lot more room then disposables. How you store your stash is really up to you, there are a lot of great options out there.
When I first started cloth diapering I stored my stash in a rolling nursery storage station that I bought at babies r us. The storage area was made of fabric and it snapped onto a plastic frame. I thought it would be perfect and it was at first. As my diaper stash grew, the weight of my stash got to be to much and the snaps would come undone and the fabric would collapse. I made due with it for the first three kids but once I got pregnant with my fourth and my third was still in diapers, I knew I wanted something else.
The room we have the nursery in is not a very big room. It is about a 10×10 space. You put a changing station, crib, toy box and other baby gear in there, the extra space is very limited. I needed somewhere to store my stash and did not want to use a dresser drawer. I needed room in the dresser for clothes and my diapers were to pretty to stick in a drawer and shut. I wanted them out to be seen and enjoyed.
This one of my favorite diapers to make. It combines the ease of a aio, with the practicality of the pocket diaper!
The insert once sewn agitates out of the diaper with ease!
I hope this video tutorial aids you in sewing up your very own pocket aio diaper!
- Square Winged Pattern (my own)
- Waterproof PUL Outer (22*22 inch diaper cut)
- Suede Cloth Inner (22*22 inch cut)
- Kam Snaps (or Hook and loop)
- Polyester Thread (Guitermann)
- Organic Hemp Fleece for the Insert! (1/4 yard)
Here are some photos of the finished product:
Until next time swappers,
I have a few friends now that have made the switch to cloth diapers, when they first started looking into the switch, they all asked the same thing. Should they buy all new or used diaper and why?
I tell them my story. One of my first cloth diaper purchases was new and from a WAHM. Unfortunately, it was the worst cloth diaper purchase I have ever made. I was a cloth newbie, did not know what to look for and the WAHM did a horrible job. She ended up closing up shop before I was able to do anything about it and I was out a lot of money. After that I bought a variety of used diapers and I was so glad I did. Buying used diapers gave me the chance to try several different things, find what worked best for us and not spend a lot. Even buying used, my diapers have lasted a very long time, I have been able to resell everything that did not work for us and get more of what did. I have bought new diapers, some being on the more expensive end, some being wahm, others being cheap and bought from coops.
There are advantages and disadvantages of being new or used. I have put together a small list below with a few examples.
“But what do you do with the poop?”
This question is often asked by new cloth diapering parents, or by non-cloth diapering people who regard cloth diapering as sort of an anachronism, like dressing in Renaissance fair clothing except cloth diapers are worn every day and have more poop involved. It’s not a bad question, because disposable diaper poop goes into the trash most of the time and the rest of us use toilets and merrily flush our excrement away without much thought. So what DO you do with a cloth diaper full of poop?
It doesn’t matter what time period you are from. Babies always pull down your shirt at the most inappropriate times, such as while sitting for a formal portrait.