Musings of a crunchy, domestic goddess

Just another mama musing about her kids, Attachment Parenting, activism, photography, and life in general

Hey big spender May 10, 2007

Filed under: Attachment Parenting,Kids,My life — amygeekgrl @ 1:53 pm

I’ve been busy the past few days preparing a bunch of my baby/kid clothes and some maternity clothes for the Just Between Friends sale this weekend in town. It’s a HUGE sale with over 300 consignors and 20,000 items.

I have never consigned stuff there before, but I did shop the sale last year and bought a ton of stuff for Julian (all of which he’s outgrown, of course).

Tonight is the presale for consignors and I’m hoping to score some good stuff, mostly some summer clothes for the kids and maybe some other things like play equipment for the yard or perhaps a double stroller. We’ll see. I was there this morning dropping off my clothes and there is so much stuff. I actually bought some HABA wooden rattle/teethers directly from my friend while we were there. The sale hasn’t even started and I’m already spending my cash. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’m sure I could spend a fortune there if I didn’t restrain myself.

While we are undecided if we will have more kids, I decided to go ahead and part with a bunch of the baby/kids’ clothes taking up room in our house. (Less we’ll have to move to a new house someday, right?) I saved some for sentimental reasons, but I figure it’s pretty easy and not that expensive to buy more baby clothes (used/consigned) in the future should we have the need. Might as well clear some of the stuff out of our house in the meantime. I also donated some of our clothes to our local Attachment Parenting International group who’s using the profits from the sale to buy AP books to stock our local libraries. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Penn & Teller on Circumcision April 30, 2007

Filed under: Activism,Health,Kids,Natural living,Parenting,Valuable Resources — amygeekgrl @ 9:03 pm

Everything you ever wanted to know (and then some) about circumcision:

From Penn & Teller’s Showtime Bullshit! series, here’s The Bullshit of Circumcision

I think this video speaks for itself. I will add that “brief nudity” is an understatement in this episode’s case, and (as this shows actual circumcisions being performed on babies) this is not for the faint of heart. That’s all I’m gonna say about that.

 

Can I do it all? March 27, 2007

Filed under: Breastfeeding,Kids,Mothering,My life,Photography — amygeekgrl @ 8:10 am

I’ve got a lot rattling around in my head these days, but very little time to sit down and blog about it. Mostly, I’m questioning my place in the world right now. Am I overextending myself? Am I trying to do too much? Am I just plain crazy??

I love taking pictures for other people, but is now the right time in my life to be pursuing it? The post-processing work especially takes up a lot of my time. And I can only work once the kids are asleep for the night, which means I stay up late and am then I feel like I’m not getting enough sleep.

Also, after reading on The Lactivist that the Mothers’ Milk Bank of Denver is nearly out of breast milk, I really want to start donating. But is it realistic for me to commit to that? I feel very fortunate to have a plentiful supply and would like to be able to share some of the “love” with other babies who really need it. I am currently going through the screening process. I told them I only have a manual pump and they said they loan out electric pumps to moms who don’t have one and want to donate! So that’s great news and incentive for me to pursue this, but will I have the time to pump every day? One of the requirements in collecting your milk is that you have a shower or a bath every day. LOL There are many days that I skip a shower because I just don’t have time. So now I would realistically have to find time to shower every day and find time to pump. Hmmm.

Parenting two children takes up a LOT of time and energy. It’s rewarding beyond belief to be a mom, but I feel like I need something more. I don’t want to give up everything that is important to me, because I feel like I need to have things that I enjoy doing and make me feel good about myself, other than being a mother. Not that being a mother doesn’t make me feel good about myself, but I have other interests besides raising two amazing kids. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Does that make sense?

I need balance. I need more hours in the day. I need a way to better manage my time.

I’m up for any thoughts on how I can do this – perhaps how you all manage your time – or if you think I’m crazy for thinking I can do it all. Thanks for “listening.” ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Super? Nanny March 13, 2007

Filed under: Activism,Attachment Parenting,Breastfeeding,Kids,Parenting — amygeekgrl @ 7:00 pm

Mamas all over the Internet are voicing their opinion on the latest episode of ABC’s “SuperNanny” today. Some think Jo’s advice to the family was completely uneducated and out of line, others have issues with parts of it and still others think there was nothing wrong with it at all. Of course I have my own thoughts on the matter to share and, now that I have a minute to get on the computer, I will do just that.

First of all, this family had a LOT of issues, namely needing to set boundaries, find some balance in their family life, and find an alternative to “whoopin'” the kids (which is what the mom called the spankings her kids received). Although the mom held her14-month-old baby a lot, nursed her on demand and the parents co-slept with their 6-year-old as well as the baby, this family was not practicing Attachment Parenting nor seemed to have any desire to.

The mom seemed reluctant to wean the baby at first, but then changed her mind and said she was ready. I applaud her for breastfeeding for as long as she did, considering only 17.2% of moms in the U.S. were still nursing their children at 12 months old (in 2003) per the CDC, even though the AAP recommends “Exclusive breastfeeding for approximately the first six months and support for breastfeeding for the first year and beyond as long as mutually desired by mother and child.”

The fact that the mom decided to wean does not bother me, however, the way Jo handled the weaning process (cold-turkey) seemed pretty darn awful. There are much gentler ways of getting a baby to wean than to go cold-turkey. Plus, it’s not good for the mom to just up and quit like that. I’m sure her boobs were about ready to explode and I hope she didn’t develop mastitis (breast infection) as a result. I wish they would’ve consulted a lactation consultant or two before giving out advice on weaning. Perhaps if they had, they would’ve known better than to encourage the mom to give her 14-month-old a bottle. Bottle use past 12 months of age is discouraged because it can lead to mouth/teeth problems.

From kellymom.com: “Stopping breastfeeding abruptly, or “cold turkey,” can be very distressing for both mother and baby and can cause plugged ducts, breast infection, or even a breast abscess. Hormone levels are also more likely to take a drastic plunge, causing mood swings, depression, etc. It’s very rare that sudden weaning is truly necessary. If someone suggests to you that this is required, get a second opinion. It would also be helpful to talk to a lactation consultant and/or a La Leche League Leader, who will be able to suggest alternatives and, if necessary, help you to wean with as little distress to mom and baby as possible.” Kellymom also has recommendations for gradual or partial weaning.

I felt many of the comments Jo made about breastfeeding or about the mom keeping the baby close to her were made with disdain. Rather than supporting the mom for breastfeeding her child, Jo seemed to be appalled that the nursing relationship continued. Perhaps she needs reminding of the AAP’s recommendation (12 months+) or WHO’s recommendations (2 years+) regarding breastfeeding.

I also disagreed with the way they transitioned the baby from co-sleeping with mom and dad to sleeping in a crib using CIO (cry it out). I felt that it was unusually cruel to first take her off the breast cold-turkey, then make her CIO in a crib (even if it was only for 5 minutes) when she’d been so accustomed to the closeness and security of mom for the past 14 months. Again, gentler methods could have been used.

More from Kellymom.com: “When you’re actively weaning, be sure to offer lots of cuddling and extra affection during the day. As your child grows older, nursing becomes much more than a way to satisfy hunger and thirst. It provides him with much comfort, security and closeness, so be as sensitive to his needs as you possibly can be throughout the process.”

They sure missed the mark on that one. Also, the way Jo applauded the mom for remaining “detached” while she listened to her baby CIO behind a closed door made me feel sick to my stomach. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ No parent should ever be praised for their detachment from their children, especially while the child cries alone.

I felt really sorry for the baby (the only one in the family who couldn’t voice her feelings) in all of this. I agree that the mom needed to pay more attention to her other children (and stop hitting them!), but there are better ways of handling it all. Perhaps Jo could’ve offered her a sling and showed her how to wear her baby (which would allow her to get more things done and still satisfy the baby’s needs) rather than just tell her to break off her attachment with her.

I know numerous families with more than one child who don’t have to break the attachment with one child to spend time with the other(s). It might take more work and ingenuity to figure out a balance, but nobody said parenting would be easy.

Another thing that bothered me was Jo saying that the baby was missing developmental milestones because she was so attached. Hmmm. I’ve never heard of a baby missing milestones from being worn/held or breastfed, the opposite is often true – the babies thrive because their needs are being met.

Overall, I’m grateful that the “SuperNanny” helped mom to realize that hitting her kids is not an effective or good discipline tactic and I hope that the family was able to find some balance after all of this. Those older two kids (not the nephew) really seemed to be crying out for attention and hopefully they are getting more now. I just wish the baby’s needs were considered a bit more. After all, she’s part of the family too.

If you wish to voice your opinion on this episode to ABC, click here or email Nick Powell, the creator and executive producer of both the American and British versions of the show – supernannyUSA@ricochet.co.uk. Craig Armstrong and Nick Emmerson are executive producers of the American version. Supernanny is produced by Ricochet, Ltd.

 

Single parenting March 9, 2007

Filed under: Family and Friends,Jody,Kids,Mothering,My life,Travel — amygeekgrl @ 8:51 pm

Each time Jody travels for work, I have a renewed appreciation for single parents.

This week was the first time he had to leave for a few days (three to be exact) since I had Julian. I wasn’t looking forward to doing it all with both kids on my own, but I’m happy to report that we managed and even did fairly well. (His being out of town was another reason why my computer time was limited this week.)

I was quite happy and proud of myself for having both kids asleep by 8:30 all three nights. That rarely happens when we are both home! I think the fact that I was able to do dinner around 5 or 5:30 then still have plenty of time for Ava to wind down before bed helped a lot. When Jody is here working, he doesn’t get home until 6 at the earliest, usually more like 6:40, so we tend to eat dinner later than most people, which results in a later bedtime for Ava. (Of course we all got up at around 6:30 this morning which was at least an hour too early for me, but c’est la vie.)

We had some friends over for a playgroup yesterday which helped break up the time a bit. It was very nice for me to get some adult interaction and Ava enjoyed playing with her friends. And the weather has been nice the past few days so we spent a good chunk of time playing in the backyard each day. (Hooray for spring!)

Even though we made it through unscathed, I’m glad Jody only has to travel about once every quarter. I wouldn’t want to do this on a regular basis. And I’m glad I’ll have the weekend with Jody back home now so I can catch up on some Zzzzzzs. ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

Scarce this week March 7, 2007

Filed under: Activism,Ava,Kids,Mothering,My life — amygeekgrl @ 8:55 am

I will probably be pretty scarce in the blogging world this week. Ava’s been having some behavioral issues – hitting and kicking – so, in an effort to give her more attention (which is what I think is the root of the issue), I’m trying to do the majority of my computer time in the evening after she’s in bed. It’s hard because I feel like I need some adult interaction during the day, even if it’s only virtually, but so far the past two days she’s done so much better with no hitting or kicking at all. ๐Ÿ™‚

When I have been on the computer in the evenings this week, I’ve been working on proofing my photoshoot, so not much time for blogging.

We’re having some friends and kiddos over tomorrow so I’m also trying to get the house cleaned up today.

Gotta run. Hope you are all having a good week. ๐Ÿ™‚

Thanks to those of you who signed the dolphin petition. If you haven’t yet had a chance to sign it, please take a moment and do so. Every day since watching that video, I can’t get those poor creatures out of my head. I hope something can be done to help protect them.

 

Biohazardous boobs, baby February 26, 2007

Filed under: Activism,Breastfeeding,Current events,Health,Humor,Kids,Pictures — amygeekgrl @ 10:28 pm

If you missed the original post about an Ohio daycare center charging a breastfeeding mom an extra $50/week breast milk surcharge and labeling the milk “biohazard,” please get up to speed here or to directly to Breastfeeding 123 for the whole story.

In actuality, “the Centers for Disease Control does not consider breast milk a hazardous bodily fluid and breast milk thus does not require any special handling, protection or storage by the daycare provider. Breast-fed babies are sick less often and less severely, translating into fewer illnesses spreading to the other children and the daycare staff.”

So why is this daycare freaking out and implementing an extra charge? At this time, I believe they have yet to comment.

Jennifer of The Lactivist is trying to gain national coverage for the story. If you or anyone you know has been discriminated against by a daycare because you were breastfeeding, please contact her.

And now, to lighten the mood…
I had to LOL at my bloggin’ friend Penny when she posted this picture of herself (on a msg board) showing off her biohazardous boobs and biohazardous material container (i.e. her baby – isn’t she a doll?).

Pennyโ€™s biohazardous boobs Pennyโ€™s baby

Here’s my take on it.
Biohazardous Amy

And I decided Julian’s shirt needed rewording.
From this:
Boob man
To this:
Biohazard man

And, oh my gosh, he’s leaking biohazardous liquid all over his shirt!
Considering all of the biohazardous material these babes consume, they sure are growing cute and chunky.

Others joining in on the toxic fun…

Beware the bioharzardous Nora (Eva’s baby)!
Biohazardous Nora

Want to show off your “biohazardous” boobs or babe? Email me your pics and blog url and I’ll put them up here.

Since we’re on the subject, here’s an interesting article about breastfed babies on WebMD – Breastfed Kids Become Social Climbers British Study: Breastfed Babies 41% More Likely to Be Social, Educated Adults