Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Review - Potty Bootcamp by S. Riffel

Ryder is offically Potty Trained!
I told you all several weeks ago that Ryder was on the path to Potty Training. After some investigation & many recommendations (some from you guys) to try The Potty Bootcamp, I decided this was the way to go. I set off in search of the book and downloaded the ebook from http://www.thepottybootcamp.com/ for the low, low price of $5.95. It is a very quick read at only 41 pages.

I was completely game until I reached Chapter 4 "Prep Time - Enlistment" (page 12). I thought - Wait a minute, I am ready to start today and I don't have time to 'enlist' Ryder. I can't wait another week or 2 or however long it takes him to decide to 'enlist'. But, I kept reading...just in case. Although at this point I had already decided to go it on my own. Couldn't hurt to see what other techniques she recommends in case what I have in mind doesn't completely succeed. But, this 'enlistment time' just wasn't going to happen!

I have to say by the end of the book, I was back on board. Suzanne pointed out that 90% of the training is done in one day. After some thought, I decided a one day plan, even if it was days away, was better that the torture I was going to have to endure using the methods I had in mind.

This was a Wednesday 3 weeks ago. I started to formulate a plan. The boys stay with my mother-in-law on Thursdays, so I would give Ryder 1 week to 'enlist' and then keep him home the following Thursday while I sent the other two to Mimi's house. We stocked up on the rewards, the underwear and all other items the book recommended, making a big deal of this important day. I stocked up on my resolve, my patience and my prayers. It was only going to be 1 day, but it was going to be 1 LONG, HARD, FRUSTRATING Day! I printed out the flowchart the book provides to make sure I did all the right steps in the right order. I was only going to do this once, so I wanted to make sure I got it right. Quite honestly, the day came and went in a blur. I remember feeling frustrated, proud, even feeling sorry that I had to be "mean" so Ryder would get it. He was doing so well, I even chanced a run to McD (about a 10 minute trip) with only underwear and pants. I believe this is breaking the rules by the way. How disappointed I was when Ryder announced from the back seat "I no peeing" code words for "I wet my pants." But, when we got home, we rushed to the bathroom & he was still dry! At the end of day 1, the 90% day, I had no idea if any of it was working. The book indicated you will be in one of two categories at the end of day 1 - Your child self-initiated, or Your child did not self-initiate. I couldn't even decide which group we were in. Does "I no peeing" count as "I need to pee?" I was confused, but determined to see this through and I was not putting diapers on this child again! So... onward!

Day 2 was going to be harder, I had all 3 kids, and couldn't focus all of my time on Ryder. I went to bed feeling exhausted, confused, and worried, but also determined to see this through. Then it happened. About 10 minutes after we got up, Ryder stood at the end of the couch and proudly announced "I have to potty." WOOHOO!!!! We have had plenty of accidents since then, and really didn't leave the house for the next week & a half, but he is getting it. We have had several accident-free days!

I can't recommend The Potty Boot Camp book enough! We give it 5 stars!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Backing the Change 3 Things Challenge!

I sell a LOT of bumGenius & Flips. The woman behind the company, Jennifer Labit, is a very interesting and inspiring woman. She is out to change diapering one baby at a time. She has set out a challenge to diapering parents: Change 3 Things: 3 cloth diapers. One planet. Big impact.

I have taken the challenge and as a disposable convert myself, I understand the pros & cons of both sides. My child (we are down to 1 in diapers!!!) is not cloth diapered exclusively. Sometimes the convenience of disposables wins. But then I re-read facts about the chemicals, the environment and the cost...& can't imagine going back to disposables full time!

She has been tracking diaper changes calculated as 3 diapers * the number of 'like' on the Change 3 things Facebook Page. So, go like the page & tell her Nell's Natural Baby sent you. From early March to today, more than 717,000 cloth diapers have been changed! That is the equivalent to the number of disposable diapers 400 babies would have contributed to a landfill in a year's time.

It's amazing what 3 diapers a day will do for the planet, for your wallet & for your child! You go Jennifer! I love how one persons vision can set the world on fire!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Our Pinecone Obsession - Bunnies

I hear a lot of moms comment about their kids collecting rocks. One friend of mine has 4 kids who routinely put rocks in their pockets to paint during the summer months. Another mom I know had to resort to a large flower vase to contain all the rocks her daughter brought home. For my boys, it's pine cones. We live in Ohio, so pine cones are plentiful! Every walk we take results in at least 1 pine cone per child & I bet we have come home with 20-25 in a single walk. I do not allow them in the house very often, they crunch up & make a terrible mess. Our dog also thinks they are a delectable treat, and I can't imagine they are great for her insides! We keep the pine cones in a box in the garage and generally use them start fires in the fall and winter. This serves several purposes. 1.) It works to help our fires get started 2.) the boys think it is neat that they catch fire first and 3.) It thins out the pine cone collection for next year!

But, I do try to incorporate them into crafts if I get the chance. The boys love to go out to the box and find the "one" they want to use. The hard work of finding the perfect pine cone will turn the day around for the boys! Their excitement for crafting turns the day around for me!

This week, Braden saw these Pine Cone Bunnies in our Disney Family Fun Magazine (which we LOVE) & out came the craft supplies.

They now grace our fireplace mantle. What a fun way to start Easter Week!

Monday, April 18, 2011

How to: Fold a prefold cloth diaper

Wouldn't it be great if the term prefold meant that the diaper was already folded for you and ready to put on baby's bum? Sorry, prefold means that you must fold the diaper before putting it on baby's bum. Luckily, there are several ways to fold a prefold & all are quite simple! At different ages, you may find that different folds work better. Experiment and practice until you find the perfect fold! We have prefold packages available for Preemies, Infants and Older Babies. We also have the prefolds and covers separately so you can personalize your own stash!

The Trifold FoldGood for newborns and infants. Lay out the prefold. Fold each side over the middle (trifold) and place in diaper cover. Put on baby. Fasten cover. For tiny babies, fold the prefold in fourths the short way instead of thirds the long way. Then place in cover. This shortens the prefold.

Bikini Twist Fold. Lay the baby on the prefold. Twist the bottom portion of the prefold. Bring up the prefold between legs. Secure the sides of the cloth diaper with a Snappi, adjusting the front rise as needed. Fasten the diaper cover. This is a great fold for babies with chunky legs. It maintains great absorbency while allowing a large opening for the legs. This is also a great fold if your diapers are a little large for your baby.

The Angel Wings Fold. Fold each side over the middle (trifold the prefold). Flare out both sides on the top of the diaper. Place baby on top of the prefold. Bring up the prefold between legs. Secure the "wings" of the diaper with a Snappi, adjusting the rise as needed. Fasten diaper cover.  This fold is wonderfully trim fitting while still wrapping the cloth diaper around your baby's body which allows it to catch more of the mess.

The Jelly Roll Fold. Also known as the Sidewall Fold. Lay the baby on the prefold. Roll both sides in toward the middle making a taper. Bring up the prefold between legs. Secure sides of the diaper with a Snappi, adjusting the rise as necessary. You can see how the roll around the legs helps to keep messes inside, especially great for runny newborn poo. Fasten diaper cover.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

I NEED a mom conversation!

Do you ever feel like you are stuck in the kids world? You know the one...where the purple dinosaur and the flying tiger meet and have a battle with the legos and the winner gets their hotwheel of choice? (If you have girls, maybe you at least get to have a civilized tea party with purple dinosaur and flying tiger)? Where a tent is a bed sheet strung between the couch & the chair and you must use the secret password to enter? Where all questions must begin and end with the letters "W-H-Y"? And all answers must be repeated a minimum of 14 times?

That is the world I live in! I LOVE my boys, and I honestly LOVE their crazy, silly, loud nature...most of the time. But, there are those times when I crave the quiet, honest, sensible conversation of another mom. My husband is a wonderful listener, and I can talk to him about anything, if I want to do the talking. He just is not much of a talker himself. Thankfully, I have found the moms I need! Mothers of Preschoolers International (MOPS). Our group meets every other Wednesday at a great local church with a fun indoor playground and awesome childcare volunteers who plan a lesson, sing, snack and play with the kids. This provides me with 2 hours of much needed down time with other moms. Yes, we spend most of the time discussing how to be a better mom, and that is ok. Two weeks ago, we talked about our child's Love Language and how to show love in whichever way our child would feel it best. After a wonderful presentation, we created this little window vase:

This vase may be quite tiny, but its importance is monumental and grand.
For the love that went into each picked 'flower',
was carefully chosen by your child's small hand.

How important these pesky 'flowers' become and how great they will make your day,
when your child comes running across the lawn 'I picked these just for you,' they'll say.

No other flower can show your child's love, that that of the dandelion in bloom.
For sometimes in the thicket of weeds, Gods love is revealed to you.

So each time you use this vase, remember how great the reason.
For nothing can compare to the love of a child, when the dandelions are in season!

Of course as soon as we got outside, the boys went dandelion hunting (not very hard at our house right now!) and brought me the sweetest 'flowers' to remind me that a child's world is right where I belong...most of the time!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Potty Training - Here comes Ryder!

I am a cloth diaper retailer & I am loving my job...Selling Diapers. I am also a diapering mama & not loving that job so much...changing diapers. I love the cute, fluffy, healthy diapers stacked neatly in the cubbies of my storage room. I mean who wouldn't love this view...

But, when I see those same diapers in the baskets on my changing tables (even though they are clean, fluffy & super cute), I feel anything but happy.

Ryder is 2 1/2 & I am ready to have him OUT OF DIAPERS! He has such sensitive skin (thanks to his dad), that he has had a constant battle with diaper rash since he was born. These days, he is such an independent soul that sometimes I do not catch a BM until he comes running to me telling me "my butt hurts" and he is red as a beet! I know it is going to get worse this summer as we head outside for hours at a time & he will have no patience to stop for diaper changes. I hurt for him, so it is time for him to move into big boy pants!

To that end, I have been researching potty training all over again. I have found a wealth of information, and a wealth of conflicts! Train slowly, train quickly, do it in 1 day, it takes time, go naked, put on pants, let the child train themself, leave them on the potty until they go.... What am I supposed to do. This is a child who thinks that telling you up when he means down, & up when he means down is hilarious. I am not sure getting him to tell me he has to potty is going to be easy. Many have suggested "Potty Bootcamp" by Suzanne Riffel. I have ordered the e-book for this evening's reading pleasure. So, with my mind made up & Ben's support, we are going to get the job done one way or another! I hope! ;-)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Not-so-random Blog Hop! - Six in the Nest

Since I have started my blog, I have been doing A LOT of blog hopping! Just to see how to improve my blogging skills & not bore you all to death. Well, today I stopped by this blog, and was sucked in for way longer than I should have stayed. Now I am going to have to stay up late and figure my March numbers. So, thanks for nothing Jenilee! =)

Anyway, this is a wonderful place to check out all things parenting. With 6 children under 7 years old, Jenilee knows a thing or 2 about being a mom, and she is happy to share with the rest of us. You can find a lot of great reads as well as reviews, giveaways, blog hops & my personal favorite, Fluffy Fridays! =) So, check it out at http://www.sixinthenest.com/ and let me know what you think.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Hapinstance - Grand Opening!

I am very happy to report that 'Nell's Natural Baby' is now available inside Hapinstance Designs in the historical district of downtown Tipp City, Ohio! What an awesome shop we have been invited to join. The ladies there are amazing. Jetta, Marilyn & Suzan, WOW!!! You have created a truly wonderful space to shop.

The grand opening celebration was on Saturday. I was so busy talking to new moms & dads, grandmas & grandpas, I didn't get any pictures of the festivities. I even got to hold a couple sweeties ~ perks of the job ;-) Rest assured it was a great time. With purses, jewelry, candles, cards, furniture & accessories, on & on, the baby section & diapers are just one part of the beautiful big picture.  We are very excited to have a place where families can go to 'touch & feel' the products.  Please, stop in & see this wonderful new store. Trust me, you won't walk out empty-handed. I have a hard time resisting & I go all the time (not good for our savings plan ;-)