Thankful in 2011

As 2011 is coming to an end in a few hours, I find myself thankful for so many things over last year: (in no particular order)

  • Having 1 year of maternity leave
  • Mommy friends (I’d be lost without you)
  • Fun Day Monday’s (while on maternity leave)
  • Baby Cafe on Friday’s
  • My family’s health; Dad is 5 years cancer free this December: )
  • Second hand children’s clothing
  • Education (opportunities for education)
  • Starting this blog
  • Local food
  • Farmer’s Markets
  • Junior Mints (in the fridge)
  • Having a dog
  • Being active (running at lunch, soccer, zumba, Jillian Michael’s DVD’s, walking dog)
  • Amy’s peanut butter balls
  • Amazing friends
  • Nap time
  • Babies
  • My husband
  • Birthdays (my daughter’s, husband, parents, friends and yes my own)
  • Skype (with my mother-in-law)
  • Cloth diapers
  • Great sitter for Lilly
  • Extra house keys
  • My parent’s
  • My daughter
  • Today’s Parenting Magazine
  • Having a family doctor
  • Long weekends
  • Siblings
  • Vacation
  • Snow
  • Local trails
  • Mommy’s night out
  • Reusable bags (our collection just keeps growing)
  • Back roads in the Valley
  • Movie nights with my husband (rental movies)
  • Warm water
  • 4 seasons
  • Birkenstocks
  • Facebook (Yes, I am thankful for Facebook. So many friends/family I now get to see and keep in touch).
  • Good food

Thanks 2011 you were great….now on to 2012. Looking forward to what this year will bring us.

Happy New Year!

How are you celebrating New Year’s? 

Easy. Pee-Zee. Cloth Diapers!

Cloth diapers…..eeeeeuuuuuwww…is the reaction I’ve had in the past. Let me change your mind on cloth diapering.

One: When I  first thought about cloth diapering I thought it was going to be a lot of work.

Well, I was wrong. It’s really not a lot of work.  Pretty similar to disposable – take dirty one off and put clean one on, right, RIGHT!!! With cloth diapers you simply rinse the liner and any poop (in toilet or sink etc), then place it in a dry bag and wash cloth diapers in washing machine. Personally, I wash my diapers every 2 days, sometimes I wait until the morning of the 3rd just to get the night time diaper in the wash. Also, I try to hang them on the line for the sun to bleach them naturally – a good tip from a friend who cloth diapers.

Two. My second thought was this is going to be expensive.

So we saved our money over the course of my pregnancy; maybe $20-25 a pay cheque which is roughly the equivalent to one cloth diaper in Canada. So, yes we spent about $600 on about 24 Bum Genius diapers and $24 on liquid laundry soap (Allan’s), which has lasted us over a year!!! Think about it, we spent $600 on 24 diapers that we can use over and over and OVER again! As opposed to $15-$20 per bag of roughly 30-45 disposable diapers every other week. I found this “conservative estimate” for disposable diaper usage (in Canada): “Total estimated average cost $2694.54 for 7,349 disposable, single use diapers on the Diapering Decisions website (I can take no credit for these numbers). Wow, and I thought the $600 we spent on the reusable cloth diapers was a lot  – again I was wrong!

Oh, and this was all for 1 … yes ONE child. To think when we have another child we will use the same diapers for that baby and still be saving money on diapers! Sometimes diapers go on sale or you can find them second-hand on kijiji or cloth diapering websites.

Photo: A few of the diapers we bought.

Three: Diaper pins are no longer necessary. And the cute designs and colours means for less clothing in the warmer months – as it’s pretty cute to see a cloth diapering baby run around.

Four: They are cute on little bums. Yikes, I sure look tired in this photo!

Five: Environmental Impact. Since my background is environmental education and outdoor recreation it just made sense for me to use cloth diapers. Less disposable diapers in the landfills, is, well important to me. Sure I have to wash them but with a front loading washing machine and a full load of diapers that’s better than in the garbage for years and years to come.

Lilly helping me stuff her diapers….she’s fooling around and not getting much done 🙂

Six: Educating ourselves: We took the time during my pregnancy to educate ourselves. We would go into cloth diapering/baby stores and ask questions. We would ask our friends who were cloth diapering and we would google cloth diapering.  In the end we mainly bought BumGenius diapers (24)  from Nurtured in Halifax, Nova Scotia as they were the closest store to us. We also got a few other types to see which ones we preferred on our little one. It’s nice to have a variety. In the end we now have 28 BumGenius diapers as we prefer the fit and styles offered.

Seven:Educating others: after a few months of cloth diapering, I had a few friends and family members asking about cloth diapering. Everything from:

  • “what do you do with the poopy diaper”
  • “what about over night”
  • “why are there so many buttons on this diaper”
  • “how do you wash them” and
  • “do you REALLY like cloth diapering?” (Yes, yes I do).

So, I wouldn’t just tell them, I would sit and show them on my daughter. How to change the diaper, the different sizes as she grows from her birth weight of 6 lbs 13oz to her current weight of 26 pounds, the dry bag, the dry bag for soiled diapers in the bathroom, how to stuff them, what I do when I am on the road. It was great to share this with others.

Other things you can do with cloth diapers: wear them as a hat!

Finally, please note that I have not received any form of compensation for this post from Cotton Babies, the makers of BumGenius diapers. I simply just wanted to share my love for cloth diapers since starting Piper’s Run Blog a few weeks ago. I came across this contest and thought it would be a good opportunity to blog and enter the contest. If I happen to win the contest, I would receive 12 cloth diapers for myself AND 12 cloth diapers to give away!!!! I would love to share my experience and give 12 cloth diapers to a new mom/dad in my area OR someone on following or commenting on this blog. The Cotton Babies contest winner will be selected January 15th 2012.

What do YOU think of cloth diapering?

Would you give it a try?

Let me know and if I am the lucky winner I’ll be looking for someone to give the 12 cloth diapers to!

 

UPDATE January 16th 2012: I am not the winner of the contest, Bummer (no pun intended). BUT I do have my first GIVEAWAY – check out this post: https://pipersrun.com/2012/01/15/cloth-diapers-my-first-giveaway/

White Christmas after all!

Well, it was a White Christmas in Nova Scotia (at least).

On Christmas Eve we decided to take Lilly out in the snow to play. Note: she’s only 18 months so getting her in a snow suit is a challenge.

SHE had a blast….

Round and round she goes…..with Daddy. Pulling a sled with a 26 lbs toddler is a great workout 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Such a great start to our Christmas holiday together.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas (those whom celebrate) and here’s to a Happy New Year!!!!

 

Investments

When I was younger I didn’t really think to much about “investments”.  Sure I started an RRSP when I was just out of University but I never really got that into it, you know.

When our daughter was born we had multiple people asking if we started an RESP (Registered Education Savings Plan – something like that). We had not. Lilly was four weeks early so investing in her future education was not our number one priority. Eventually, after her first birthday (and collecting gifted money to Lilly) we started an RESP. So we’re all set up there.

Back to when Lilly was first born. We spend 5 long days in the hospital because she wasn’t nursing well and she had jaundice.  They wouldn’t let us leave until it she got better. We had planned on cloth diapering but did not have an opportunity to purchase any cloth diapers, so we used what the hospital had – Pampers brand. Lilly was only 6 lbs 13 oz and dropped down to 5 lbs 15 oz while in hospital, we had to use premie diapers or Size 1. We went through so many diapers in the first month, I just thought it was crazy. I had a good laugh one day that we should have invested money in Pampers. Now I am thankful we invested in cloth diapering.

Since then, there have been many more items I think we should invested in and here are a few examples:

  1. Disposable diapers – because so many are needed.
  2. Cloth diapers – because they are a great investment and increasing in popularity .
  3. Pads – anyone who’s had a baby will understand that one.
  4. Infant Tylenol or Advil – because when your child is sick you’ll do anything to make sure they get better (AND sleep).
  5. Infant Vicks rub – see #3 explanation.
  6. Baby clothing – they grow so fast, it’s a marketer’s dream.
  7. Children’s toys – again they grow so fast through many stages of learning.
  8. Cars parts – when you need a car for work or your basic needs you’ll pay to keep your car running.
  9. RESP – because our daughter will have some money for her education (when she get’s there).
  10. Wine -because parents need to get through the night 😉

What do you invest in? Or what do you think is a good investment (for fun or for money)?

I Love Cloth Diapers

When we got pregnant with Lilly we decided to cloth diaper instead of  using disposable (for many reason – which I’ll post about another time). We asked our friends questions, went to a few local stores and asked them questions too. We saved our money and the bought a good selection of cloth diapers. We also received some as presents which was great!

Since Lilly was 4 weeks early and so tiny the cloth diapers we bought were just not small enough. We decided that we were not going to buy x-small cloth diapers that we’d only use for a short time (next time we will buy the x-small size as use them from day 1). One of the diapers we were given as a gift was an AMP Diaper!  It was great, fit her well, great colours and was easy to use. AND it just so happens they are having a GIVEAWAY for the 12 days of Christmas.

You should check out the AMP Diaper website, their contest and consider cloth diapers your wee ones.

We love it!

Crap! Pop all over our Christmas photos!

You can see where this blog is going already.

As my husband sat down with our daughter yesterday he had a glass of pop at the table. We were getting ready to eat dinner and they were sharing something, I can’t remember seeing exactly what they were sharing but they were hanging out at the table – the busy put everything on it table.

All of a sudden I hear “CRAP” or it could have been more like SH*T. I looked over and saw a pool…yes a pool of pop all over Christmas pictures we had taken of our daughter at Wally-world.  Since we just got the pictures the day before this happened and had made a list of who we need to send them to all I could think of was – GREAT, just great, now we can’t give these to anyone and we’ve just wasted our money.

Deep breath….

So, we picked them up and shook off as much pop as we could. Then took a cloth (yikes!) to them. They seemed a little sticky and again I thought…CRAP. My poor husband at one point looked at me and said “just say something” and I couldn’t say anything! I was pretty upset because I thought the photo’s were ruined but really should I have placed them on the dinning room table or somewhere else (yes, probably) but I didn’t.

We put them in our spare room and turned the heat up a little. To our surprise this morning – they were dry and NOTHING was wrong with them. No sticky stuff, no lines or bubbles…well 1 photo with a black border was a little smudged. We Were Lucky!

Lesson learned for the day – always put important photo’s in a safe spot AND don’t drink pop/any liquid near photo’s 🙂

 

Two days at home WITHOUT toddler!

Wow, I’ve been waiting for a while to have even just 1 day at home without a toddler running around. Not that I don’t love my daughter – I DO. But everything is so much easier to do when she is either asleep or at the sitters (Mon -Fri).

I started my Christmas vacation today at 3:30 with getting my hair cut. Nothing like making a girl feel good about herself then getting a hair cut …. well maybe  a really good run or workout 🙂 (Which I am hoping to get in over the next two days).

Last night when I went to bed my mind was racing with things I had to do at work, and things I had to do before Christmas, during Christmas and then I stopped thinking about the “to do” and tried to fall asleep. Eventually I did but Lilly woke us up a few times as she’s getting a cold….so not the best sleep.

On my “TO DO LIST” while Lilly is at the sitters 8:30 to 4:30ish over the next two days:

1. Get groceries.

2. Fill up car with gas – almost empty (plus it’s getting cold outside and I really don’t love pumping gas in my car on those COLD windy days – who does?

3. Put groceries away (without eating anything first)

This is when things start to get blurry and order goes out the door:

4. Workout (probably a 20 minute Jillian Michaels video and a 20 – 25 minute run outside in the cold) I do love to run in the winter.

5. Yeah, then I will need to shower and dry my new hairstyle (which you can never do just like the hair dresser).

6. Make 36 cookies for cookie exchange on Friday. Find creative way to package them.

7. Finish buying Christmas stuff (stocking stuffers and hopefully that’s it).

8. Clean our spare room…this will take a full day – crap. Maybe I’ll  just clean up 1/2 of the room so a guess could actually sleep IN the bed. I am sure my parents will be happy to sleep in a bed and not the futon in the basement someday.

9. House cleaning; bathrooms (we have 3 which is not cool), vacuum – our relationship has not been great lately, dust – frig I don’t like dusting….OK, i’ll stop there.

10. Finish wrapping my secret santa present for Friday’s baby Christmas party (okay, they are not babies anymore but it’s our baby group that is getting together).

And that’s just day 1.

Day 2

I will repeat #4 and #5 – as they go hand and hand. Might change up the workout slightly but the thought of having TWO days in a row of good workouts is rather motivating to me.

11. I’d really like to go shop…not buy stuff but just “shop” during the hustle and bustle of the Christmas holiday. I worked in retail many years ago and loved this time of year.

12. Also, I’d love to take a nap….and not at the same time Lilly would go down as I would do during those early days (as someone once said to me “sleep when they sleep”. Very wise but I’m not going to nap at her scheduled time this go around.

13. Make Vegan Oreo Truffles for my husband (cause I love him).

14. Melt chocolate and dip the short bread cookies in chocolate. (Not vegan sorry Saï).

15. Laundry – how could I forget that. ( I can multi-task during this one).

16. Walk my dog – Maclean. She’s a retired sled dog who used to run and run and run. Now we walk and sometimes run. Her running is my sprinting and my only hope is that my neighbours have not witnessed this. (I remember finishing our “run” one day and realized I had just sprinted down our road and thought if only someone saw that, they would have thought I was nuts).

17. Maybe blog, a girl needs to escape, right?

18. Clean out wood stove – the ashes are getting a little out of hand.

19. Move wood inside (if I want to have a cozy nap….guess this has to happen before number 12.

20. Clean up “my side” of the room – it’s just terrible (Sorry Saï).

Well, I believe that is a big enough list for two days without a toddler. I’m sure I will be exhausted but will  feel pretty happy to cross off a number of these items.

Wish me luck!!!

Do you make “to do lists”? I couldn’t survive without them (especially after having a child).