Posted in Parenting

Our Daycare Bag(s): The In-Between Season

I don’t know what the weather is like in your neck of the woods, but ’round here Mother Nature always seems to get flustered when she’s trying to transition between seasons.  In the last three days, we’ve gone from 15C, to 25C to -15C and back up to 0C.  We’ve had grey skies, clear skies, rain AND snow.  Because of this, it’s far from easy to know how to dress the kiddo in the morning.  Soooooo, I thought I’d let you guys take a peek in our daycare bag.

Not one, but two bags.
Not one, but two bags.

We’ve all heard the expression “less is more” right?  Well, when you have to prepare a daycare bag for the in-between seasons, more is more ;).

The basics: these are things that are in the bag all year-round

P1000195

  • An epinephrin injector and a bottle of banadryl for Little Dude’s dairy and flaxseed allergy.
  • A changing pad, some coconut oil, about 10 bamboo inserts (and the same amount of flushable liners), 3 envelope covers, a box of wipes and some plastic bags to put the dirty/wet diapers in.
  • A pay-by-the-minute cell phone and its charger : ok, I think this needs a bit more explaining.  You see, neither my partner or I need a cell phones as we are both easily reachable at our jobs (and we have a landline at home).  We decided to buy a cell phone about a month before Charles was born in case there was an emergency while we were with him.  Seeing as the bag follows the baby, the cell follows us as well.
  • His vaccination booklet, medicare card and hospital card

To protect him from the elements (we “mix and match” the winter and spring gear to adapt to the weather)

P1000197

  • A winter coat and winter pants.  A winter hat, neckwarmer and a pair of mittens.  (We used to have his winter boots in there too, but now they are too small so we have to settle for his spring footwear).
  • A fall/spring 3-in-1 coat (waterproof/windbreaker outer shell, fleece jacket, put the two together to make a warm coat), splash pants, a pair of thin wool gloves, rain boots with an optional fleece liner for cooler days.
  • Some shea butter to protect his face from the cold and the sun (because, let’s face it, he does not keep the neckwarmer over his mouth and cheeks).

Other stuff

P1000198

  • A change of clothes: two pairs of socks, a pair of pants, a pair of shorts, a T-shirt and a long sleeved shirt.
  • Once a week, I also include a 20oz jug of coconut milk for him to drink and for his daycare provider to cook with when needed.

What’s in your daycare/diaper bag?

Posted in Parenting

A Little Trinkle

I’m thinking of investing in a potty.

I wasn’t planning on it.  I always figured I’d wait until my son had the words for “pee” and “poop” so that he could ask to go to the potty.  Actually, I figured I’d do the three-day potty training during spring break 2015 or summer 2015.

The thing is, though, my son peed on the floor again this evening and some of my neurons connected.

Ok, maybe I should rewind a bit and explain what my son was doing sans diaper.

You see, Charles likes his routines.  He likes to know what to expect.  One of his favourite parts of bath time is when he gets out.  That’s when I wipe him down and then wrap his torso in a towel and call him my little Greek god.  He just beams and walks proudly out of the washroom in his “toga” to see his dad.

Then, if I don’t catch him in time to put his diaper on, he generally finds a place to squat down and leave a little puddle of urine before continuing on with his business (namely trying to get away from me so I can’t catch him and get him ready for bed).

So, why the potty?

I realized today that his bath lengths vary considerably.  Sometimes he’s in the tub five minutes before signing to me that he is all done, other evenings he can play and play for 45 minutes before being ready to move on to the next part of his routine.  But each time, invariably, he ends up peeing on the floor if I don’t get a diaper on him within two minutes of getting him out of the tub.

Besides, what do I have to lose?  We’re going to have to invest in a potty sooner or later anyways so it’s not like I’m going to be buying something that won’t be useful somewhere down the line.  Plus, there are some people that do elimination communication (or EC) as early as the newborn days, so I suppose it makes sense to give partial potty training a go at 16 months.  Also, he’s already gotten used to waving bye bye to his flushable liner when I’m done changing him (of course, he also likes to wave bye bye when his father or I use the toilet too :D.  I figure that I can start out slowly and encourage him to use the potty when he’s done with his bath and see where things go from there.

Make sense?

Care to share your potty training experience?

Posted in Infant, Newborn, Product Reviews

Baby Product Review #1: Applecheeks Washable Diapers

These ain’t your grandma’s ol’ cotton diapers!

I’d always been interested in using washable diapers for my children.  I’d figured, though,  that I would most likely wait for my kid to be on solids before using them as I’d heard how liquid milk poo was (and, boy is it liquid!).  However, the joys and challenges of giving birth to my first child put many of my ideas on the back burner and so, I (temporarily) forgot about the diapers.

My memory on the subject was jogged when I saw a pitch for the applecheeks washable diapers on an episode of Dragon’s Den Canada.  My first thought was ‘oh yeah, I wanted to use washable diapers’; it was soon followed by ‘wow, I had no idea washable diapers looked like that: they’re so darned cute!’.

During my nightly chunks of awake time, I went onto their website to learn more about them.  Besides being designed and manufactured in Quebec, Canada (way to encourage the local economy!), they seemed devilishly simple to use and care for even and especially with exclusively breast or formula fed babies.  No, seriously: 1. Put soiled insert/diaper cover in odor-free bag; 2. Empty everything (including the bag into the washing machine; 3. Wash them in hot water on a pre-rinse, heavy duty, extra rinse cycle; 4: Dry the inserts on high (without fabric softener) and hang the covers and bag to dry.  Voilà!

Reading about them got me really excited, but there was no way I would know if they lived up to their claims of simplicity without actually trying them out for myself.  So, I went on their online store and purchased a size 1 (there are only two sizes, the second going up to accommodating a forty-pound baby)  starter pack.

Before I knew it (really, the shipping was super fast) they had arrived and I was pre-washing them so I could finally try them out.

My verdict

I personally, really enjoy these diapers.  We loved them enough to purchase three more covers and four more inserts meaning that we have the equivalent of 13 size 1 diapers.  They are very easy to care for and are easy to use and they really are fully adjustable.  The odor proof/waterproof bag that came with the kit we ordered is does in fact keep odors away very efficiently (we keep it in our son’s room, right beside his changing table and there is no smell whatsoever even if it stays there for up to four days).  We are definitely going to invest in the size 2 covers when our son has outgrown the first diapers.

Some suggestions

  1. I would (and did) wait for my baby to be completely past the meconium phase before using them.
  2. The website provides care instructions that states that a “residue-free, scent-free, softener-free, glycerin-free” detergent be used.  They also suggest some detergents.  The shop I went to, which specializes in natural and eco-friendly personal care and cleaning products, suggested the Nature Clean hypoallergenic, unscented laundry liquid.  Personally, I am very satisfied with this product.

Worth the cost?

Our two purchases combined with the detergent cost us in total about 280 CAD.  Now, the detergent is going to last us a long time as we have a 3000 mL bottle and each wash requires only 30mL of soap for a top loader (if you have a frontal, you’ll only need 15mL).  This means that the 3 L bottle that I bought will yield 100 washes (if you have a frontal, you’d get 200 washes).

Now concerning disposable diapers, if you coupon and shop around (here’s a website that does the shopping for you) it can cost you as little as 0.15$ per diaper.  That means that you’ll start getting a return on your investment after changing roughly 1860 diapers.  Now, I don’t know about you, but I change anywhere from 6 to 10 a day.  If we keep things on the low side and estimate 6 a day for a year, we’re already at 2160 diaper changes in one year.  Plus, you can store them and reuse them for a second, third, etc. child.  In my eyes, it’s well worth the money.

Take a look, this is one of the six washable diapers we have.  Told you they were adorable!
Take a look.  This is one of the six washable diapers we have. Told you they were adorable!