August 7, 2010

Military Spouses...Mental Health Study

Oregon Health & Sciences University is conducting a study "to get a sense of what issues bother military wives most and to provide information about deployment and how it affects families." To participate or for more information, go to Military Wives Matter.

August 6, 2010

my son....the nudist

"My son is two years son is two years old"...that's been my mantra over the last few days. I've had to repeat it over and over in my head and sometimes even outloud. I've been reminding myself that he's acting like a two year old because he is a two year old and it's ok. I'm sure the words "my son is 15 years old" will also eventually become a mantra common in our house. Don't get me wrong, the boy is very well behaved 98% of the time...but even the best behaved two year old boy is still a two year old boy. Take for example, our trip to the library today. It was parachute play day and we were both pretty excited-it's great to meet other parents and socialize but unfortunately for us today, my son was the youngest (and only "boy's boy") there today so when it was time to bounce little nerf balls on the parachute, he took it upon himself to be the clean up the one who chases after the balls and returns them to the parachute. Well...chasing the balls, no problem...returning the balls, problem. They're smaller and lighter than his balls at home and whenever he went to throw them back, inevitably he threw too hard and too far. Innocent bystanders were hit and annoyed. He apologized, well, kinda-he's two...and he tried again. The worst part was that no matter what he did, he seemed to always end up bumping or throwing a ball at the prissiest little girl and her equally prissy mother....neither were pleased but I hesitated to say more than a simple correction to him because he really was only trying to help. He just doesn't do anything with very much grace or softness...hugs are a full-contact sport in our home which later another little girl at Walmart found out but that's for another post. When it comes to that sort of two year old behavior, I'm totally good with it...I've always said I'd rather a kid with a broken bone than a kid with a broken heart (one of the many reasons God knew what He was doing by giving me a son and not a daughter). Like I said though, don't get me wrong, my son is very obedient and although he's not perfect, he's great about not doing to same negative thing after being corrected and we have a strict home with consistent rules because for us, it's the only way we can make everything work.

Which brings me to the real reason for this son likes to be naked. Every night for the last several nights and even one naptime, I've walked into his room after I heard him wake up only to find the child totally and completely naked. I don't think it would be such a big deal if he was actually potty trained but he's not so it is a very big deal. I don't believe spanking or time outs will help in this particular situation because from what I've been able to figure out, he's stripping pretty early at night and sleeping free. To punish a two year old the morning after he does something wrong just doesn't seem like it'll work although you can be sure he understands my feelings on the subject. I've tried everything I know...sleeping with snugger pjs that are tougher for him to get off-he still got out of them and threw the diaper 4 feet from his bed....backwards facing diaper under pjs-he got the pjs off and literally ripped the diaper off his little butt...I even put him in full length footy pjs in the middle of summer-he unbuttoned, unzipped and got out of his clothes and yes, again took off his diaper. I'm at a loss. The only thing I can think to do now (other than A-duct taping the diaper directly onto the child or B-potty training which I wanted to wait till Oct to do so we don't have a half potty-trained kid at Disney World next month-plus, potty training's great but there are still accidents at night so even if I started today it could be months before he could "sleep free" without me having to do a load of laundry in the morning) is find some shorts that have a true drawstring. Most toddler clothes have fake drawstrings for show and not function so I'm having a tough time but it may be my only option.


This post was initially written while the boy was napping (innocently, I thought). Turns out it wasn't so innocent and it was bad, like really, really bad. I had a moment. Pulled it together. Cleaned up and at bedtime I taped the child's diaper onto him (no tape touched skin) and then put him in zip up pjs and taped the zipper shut...and just for good measure (and because he doesn't really 'need' it) I turned out his nightlight. He went to sleep faster than usual and in the morning we were totally clothed...YAY.

Tonight, however, rather than dealing with taping everything for every nap and every night I decided to take up a friend's advice (well, technically her husband's but he's a friend too) and I put the boy's footy zipper pjs on backwards after cutting off the feet.

I have never felt so victorious. Mostly because yesterday evening when the boy woke up I never felt so incapable.

August 5, 2010

My Favorite Things

Being a mom is the most comfortable, natural thing for me. I won't go so far as to call it easy, because it's not but it's often the only thing I feel truly good at...pretty much everything else I just sort of stumble through.

I've wanted to do a quick post about my favorite 'Mom' things for a while now because sooooo many new moms are clueless. If it weren't for the fact that childcare was my profession long before it was my passion (I nannied professionally for 5 years before having the boy), I would have wasted tons of time and no doubt money on stuff which was essentially useless. That being said, I don't plan to do tons of mom-reviews because every family is different and what works for one often doesn't for another. But, nonetheless, here's a list of my favorite things...

*Mylicon...if you have a kid, you understand. If you don't and your pregnant, buy two bottles. It's miraculous infant gas relief. I would've paid almost any amount for this stuff if/when our son needed it.

*Tummy Sleeve...also known by a few other brand names but basically these things helped me wear my normal every day pants all the way up through my last week of pregnancy which was great because often maternity pants are just ugly and the ones that aren't are easily $50-60 a piece. The only downside is that if you gain weight in your thighs easily or get super bloated in your legs, even a tummy sleeve may not be able to help

*AngelCare's essentially like any other static monitor except that it has a second function. With the help of a motion sensor pad which easily goes under a crib or bassinet mattress, it has the ability to set off an alarm if the baby should stop breathing for 20 seconds. IT'S AWESOME!!! My biggest fear (and I know I'm not alone) was SIDS. This monitor is the ONLY thing which allowed me to sleep easy knowing that if something happened, I would know right away. The best part for us was that the static part (or traditional monitoring) was able to be turned off and we could use only the motion sensor while our son was in a bassinet in our room without the annoying static background and then as he got bigger we were able to turn off the motion sensor and use the monitor like any other (read: the little rug rat learned how to stand in the corner of his crib on his tip toes very still and purposely make the alarm go off in the middle of the night just to laugh at us as we ran in).

*Jogger strollers with a swivel wheel...they're awesome. They glide over almost any surface and are often so easy you can push with just one hand-which leaves the other hand open for talking on the phone or sipping some coffee. Swivel wheeled joggers generally still have the ability to lock forward for a more stable jogging experience but you also have the ability to just walk normally and not have to worry about tipping it up every time you want to turn. They are much heavier than an umbrella stroller and more expensive than other "normal" strollers but I will never go with another stroller that doesn't have jogger styled wheels (also sometimes called all-terrain wheels). Between nannying and our own son, I've used (on a consistent basis) SIX different strollers of all different kinds. This is the one we have now for our son. It's kept him occupied, been a comfortable place to nap, held all our baby necessities and easily maneuvered everything we've thrown at it from the beach to numerous trips to the zoo, science museum and mall to 10 days at Disney World last year.
(ours is slightly different in color)

*last but certainly not least, nipple guards...sorry if it's TMI but my child was a chomper from day 1 and it was highly unpleasant. Neither my husband nor I will forget my Day 6 meltdown. No one had told me such a wondrous invention as nipple guards even existed and so I sat in our bed crying from pain both physical and emotional as my husband offered to open the can of formula someone had given us and we had decided to keep as emergency back-up but instead (I'm extremely stubborn and was convinced SOMETHING would help) we went to Babies-R-Us and sat in the parking lot for an hour waiting for them to open. Once they did and I had the chance to talk to someone about our little problem, they knew just what to recommend and now I'm recommending it to everyone. They not only protect a very sensitive area for mom, they help teach baby how to suckle properly. I only had to use them a couple of weeks before both my son and I got the hang of things. I used them again when he began teething for a few weeks but in the end, I credit the guards with my being able to nurse our son until he was just over a year old (I quit on Independence Day weekend-it only seemed appropriate).