Saturday, December 18, 2010

What do you do with the stuff?

When Rene's colleagues learned that we were planning another homebirth, he was approached by a couple of curious females with a question I'm sure many have wondered about.

"So, after the home birth...what do you do with all stuff?"

Meaning, I presume, the placenta etc. I know most people have this image of birth as this huge, messy, bloody ordeal. Really there isn't a whole lot of blood and it's nothing a few chux pads can't contain. Clean up is as easy as this - throw old chux pad in trash, put new chux pad under butt. It's simple really. Water birth is even easier, it's all in the water and you just drain it away. We use a pool liner that you can throw away when used and buy a new one for the next time. :)

Then you are left with a clean house, a lovely new baby and a placenta. Last time we stuck the placenta in the freezer, where it still remains, and we hope to one day plant it under a tree or something. We don't own our house yet, we'll probably hold onto it until then.

But this time, I've been reading about all the wonderful benefits of ingesting your placenta. Yes, I said it. I can't even be bothered listing all the benefits here just now, because I have more important things to do, like snuggle with an amazingly adorable 5 (and a half) day old baby boy. But seriously, google it and read all about how it can help protect against postnatal depression and help with milk supply and so much more.

Many women enjoy the benefits of placenta by slicing off a chunk and putting it in a smoothie. This is especially useful as a quick fix shortly after giving birth, especially if you are having a lot of blood loss. There are also tons of recipes out there including placenta pate, placenta stew and even placenta pizza!

I must admit, I'm not quite *that* crunchy yet. I wasn't ready to go there this time. I know, for shame, huh? But luckily for me I came in contact with a woman who will encapsulate your placenta for you! Which basically involves dehydrating it, grinding it into a powder and then sticking it in little capsules.

Before any of your get cheeky about how I'm a vegetarian and placenta is technically meat, remember that no animal had to die to make my placenta, so keep your wisecracks to yourself thank you very much.

You take a few of the capsules a day and they are like little pills of magic happiness. Seriously, I feel awesome. The first few days after the birth were a bit of a blur, I didn't get much sleep and was crawling through the days. Then baby started to sleep and I started taking these magic pills and I feel AWESOME. I woke up yesterday singing, "I'm walking on sunshine...yeah" and today singing Top Of The World by the Carpenters. Seriously I did.

Local gals, I encourage you to check out Mary Cleveland's page for more info. She is also a doula, a mother and a beautiful person inside and out.

And she also dried up the umbilical cord into a heart. How precious is that?! What a beautiful keepsake. So, I know that one day when Alasdair brings home a fiance and I pull out the heart shaped umbilical cord to show her, she might be a *little* freaked out and might hear horror movie sound effects going off in her head, but it's all good, right?

So that's what we do with the "other stuff". Isn't it awesome?

Monday, December 13, 2010

One more Monkey - whirlwind homebirth story

Our family gained one new member last night. First things first, here are the quick stats:

Baby BOY! Born Dec 12 2010 @11.26pm
9lb 2oz, 22.5 inches long

Name: Alasdair Rennie Burton Docherty

You Brits and Scots don't need me to explain the Alasdair, but you Americans are scratching your heads. It's a good, strong, Scottish name. The Scottish version of Alexander, meaning defender of men. It's popular in the UK and pretty much unheard of in the USA. We went for the Scottish spelling of the name, with a D rather than the English spelling with a T.

It's pronounced like AL-iss-tur
We will still call him Ally as a nickname, which was also his in utero nickname. We chose the in utero nickname weeks before we chose the boy name Alasdair, and it just happened to fit. :)

So here's the story according to how I remember it all.

I woke up on Sunday morning, 41 weeks pregnant and feeling so disappointed to not have had the baby overnight. I was tired from insomnia and had been up from about 4am, tossing and turning and sighing. I had had weeks of prodromal labor, especially at night. I was grumpy all the time, and so extremely fed up and done with being pregnant. I was praying every night that I'd have the baby. I was just plain done.

I got up at 7.30 and went to the bathroom and noticed pink spotting. It wasn't the bloody show, just spotting. I've never had that happen before at the end of pregnancy. I decided to take it as the ray of hope that I so desperately needed that this pregnancy would soon come to a beautiful end. I told Rene and he was notably less excited about it than I was. I didn't have any other signs that labor was impending, but I had hope. And it set me abuzz.

I let the midwife know that I thought we'd have the baby soon because I had spotting. She asked me to keep her posted. As soon as the kids were up and about and the tension of the day began, I realized I would be very unlikely to start labor while the kids were awake. But I hoped and sort of planned to start labor as soon as they were in bed. I really needed the hope and I held onto it for my sanity.

I spent the day moping around wishing my uterus would contract. I tried bouncing on a birth ball, squatting, sitting on the birth stool, dancing around the room with Turtle, trying to bring the baby down and get some action started. I took soaks in the bath, prayed, willed and wished. I had some sporadic contractions here and there, but nothing seemed to want to happen. I was continuing to spot and had some show though, so I remained hopeful and kept my heart set on getting the kids to bed and having a baby.

At one point, when we were writing out Christmas cards, I asked Rene if he'd half fill the birth pool before putting the kids in bed. He looked at me like I was insane. He was concerned that we'd fill it with warm water, then whenever I did go into labor, it would be cold by then. I didn't like that answer very much at all. I became very dejected, felt that Rene had no faith I'd go into labor and in my hormonal state that seemed to me like he just wanted me to be pregnant forever. I told him I very much intended to go into labor when these kids were in bed and I needed him to have faith in me that it would happen, and that I could do it. There were some tense moments and I eventually had a good cry at about 7pmish. It was a tension relieving cry and I think it was necessary. It helped put me in a more peaceful mindset, though I was still intent on going into labor shortly.

At about 9pm Rene took the kids and started to settle them to bed. I began preparing the birth room. I brought in my oil burner lamp and laptop and started some soft music playing. I took some photos of my pregnant silhouette. At about 9.40 I sat on the birth stool with the lights dim and basically waited for labor. Sure enough, some contractions started. Nothing much, but it was something and I was ready to get the show on the road.

I wondered why the kids were taking so long to go to sleep! By about 9.55 I had had maybe 6 contractions, kind of tight but not sore. I went in to see where Rene was and found him sound asleep on the kids bedroom floor. I woke him and was very hormonal and upset. He looked bewildered while I complained to him that him falling asleep in there when I had scheduled myself to go into labor made me feel again like he didn't have faith in me. As I was moaning at him and he was coming to, the midwife called to check up on us. Rene was post processing words I had just been saying like labor and baby and started telling the midwife he was pretty sure I wanted her to come through. I started flailing in the background and so he asked her if he could call her back.

I informed him that I wasn't actually in labor yet. In fact with all the tension the contractions had stopped. I had only had a few. But I really *wanted* to go into labor and I had high hopes. He looked at me like I had 3 heads, but he was determined to show that he did have faith in me, so instead of just calling the midwife to say, um, don't bother she's not in labor, he decided to call and say we were going to monitor progress for 20 to 30 minutes and then call her back again. I was content with that. I wanted to make sure we'd call her early enough because I knew last labor was fast. So I was happy that she was in the know from the very onset.

I didn't have any contractions anymore, because of the tension. But I asked Rene to start filling the pool anyway. And after the fight earlier, he decided to oblige without complaint this time. :) He started filling it and all of a sudden, at about 10.10 - 10.15 I had quite a serious contraction. And then another. I could still talk through them and Rene couldn't tell I was having them, but my hopes soared. I asked him to put on the sterilized bed sheets, and he obliged. He asked if I was having any contractions and I told him I was. And that I planned on having a baby tonight, thank you very much. He got on with his task without complaint. Have I mentioned that he's an awesome man, by the way? None of this would have worked out if he had trusted his brain and used common sense instead of trusting in my words. He chose to have faith in me and it made this a success. <3

At about 10.25 the birth pool had a few inches of water and the contractions were starting to hurt. I asked Rene if he thought I should go ahead and get in. "Sure, why not?" I got in and felt instant relief of pressure and suddenly felt very silly. I had a few minutes without a contraction and thought "I bet I've just ruined my chances of going into labor. I'll relax too much in here. I bet this was just going to be more prodromal. What a fool I've made of myself". Just as I was trying to figure out how we'd get another pool liner for whenever I actually would go into labor, another contraction hit. This one required my full focus and sort of slapped me back into birth mode, so I told Rene to call back the midwife and ask her to come through. Game on. He complied. Have I mentioned he's amazing?

We were still a bit uncertain, especially in between contractions because I felt fine in between. We were talking and laughing and I'd sometimes ask, "do you think we're having a baby tonight?" By now he knew the right answer, "yes, we're having a baby tonight". Good man. He gave me lower back rubs and continued to fill the pool with boiling pots of water and from the hose.

They picked up so fast I really lost track of time. Turns out there wasn't a whole lot of time to even lose track of, it was all just happening so fast. During contractions I heard myself saying, "come on baby, come on baby, I want to meet you" and I visualized my baby's head coming down.

I started to feel nauseous which seemed early. But I took the bowl into the water in case I'd need it. I was really vocalizing through the contractions. At first I was low moaning/humming through them but by now I was opening my mouth wide and sort of saying, "ohhhhhhhhhh ahhhhhhhhh" and still sometimes, "come on baby! Yes baby, come on out!"

I was waiting for transition to hit, things were starting to feel crazy and I thought I was in the active stage for sure and was kind of dreading transition coming. We continued to fill the pool, it never got completely filled but we finally got some good depth in it. At about 11.20 I noticed myself pushing a bit with contractions! Which surprised me. I didn't think I had hit transition yet. I worried that I wasn't fully open, but my body was pushing with or without my consent so I decided to trust it and not fight it. I asked Rene to wake Kaya, she hadn't wanted to miss it.

He brought her through and she was like a zombie. She was so tired. I told her she could go back to bed if she wanted. She said she might just lie down on the floor. But when my next contraction hit, I was very loud. More yelling than anything. Not screaming, more like a birth warrior yell. It certainly woke Kaya up! She uttered some encouraging words about how it's hard but it's worth it. I told her I know, it really is worth it and I told her I love her.

This baby took more pushes than my others. Because I had to push a few times for baby to even come low enough. Once I felt the baby was finally down and ready I gave a much more focused push, I couldn't help it. My body just took over. I tried panting, but I couldn't keep it up for long, I had to push more. Rene was um...disposing of extra floaters in the pool (sorry peeps, it's a fact of life and sometimes birth) when I birthed the head. He heard me say, "head's out" and he ran through in a flash. I asked, "is it ok?", because I was wondering about the cord. he told me he hadn't checked, so I put my hand down to check and announced that baby was still in the bag of waters.

It felt very strange, the waters were all inflated around the head like a big, soft, flabby water balloon. I instinctively tried to tear the sac with my fingers, because I wanted to check the cord and feel the head, but I was unsuccessful and then another contraction hit and required my full effort. I was telling myself, "it's almost over, it's almost over" and then sure enough, it was over. At 11.26pm the body slipped out so fast and the relief was instant.

I sat down and pulled my baby out of the water. I guess the sac burst while the rest of the baby was being born because when I pulled him out of the water, the sac slipped off of his body. He cried instantly and was a really good color. He pinked up so fast. I was catching my breath and declaring my love when Kaya asked me to check if we had a brother or a sister. I took an extra moment and then checked, and told her she had another brother! I must admit, I thought it would be a girl. I am *always* wrong about the sex of the baby. Zoe's the only one I ever got right. I was so thrilled though and instantly thought about how good it will be for Turtle to have a brother.

Rene called the midwife to tell her the good news. Kaya went to wake Lana and she came through and met her new brother. I tried to nurse him but he had no idea how to latch on. We had some nice bonding time, put hats on the baby and kept him covered with towels. We announced his name to the kids.

Then I had another horribly sore contraction and I was worried a twin was going to come out! It was very sore. But then out came the placenta, much to my relief! We scooped it into a bowl and Rene helped me out of the pool and into bed. As soon as I layed in bed Rene accidentally dumped the bowl of placenta and blood all over me and the midwife and assistant arrived that very second. So it must have looked pretty messy for them!

Baby latched on better and suckled like a champ. The midwife and assistant checked us over, weighed and measured baby and checked we were all ok.

Kaya cut the cord, and had a bit of trouble holding the scissors. Thankfully the midwife was very patient with her and helped her be nice and careful. Everything was all abuzz and I suddenly felt very bewildered and I guess a little bit in shock. I hadn't debriefed from any of it and the fastness of it all just suddenly hit me. I probably wasn't great for conversation. I had a bit of retained placenta which we managed to get out and everything seems fine with that now. Afterbirth pains are not fun, but in a few days they'll ease off. I'm looking forward to that!

Midwives left, kids went back to bed, Rene snored, Ally slept beautifully and I watched him all night.

I couldn't really sleep. I snoozed as much as I could. The tiredness is hitting me now! I'm going to try to nap. I'm still so full of birth buzz, so full of love, so glad to not be pregnant anymore! I have been blessed with another baby boy. He is so perfect. He has dark hair and is a mix between Rene and I, and a bunch of our kids. He looks like he belongs with us.

It all was shockingly fast and I realized there is a lot of power in setting your mind on something! I had really decided I was going to have this baby and it happened better than I could have dreamed. He has been nursing well, pooping well and sleeping really well. He's a dream and I love him so much. His siblings love him too. Turtle is a little unsure, he refuses to kiss him and seems a little nervous with him, but he doesn't seem jealous or anything. He's just being his usual little darling self, keeping us giggling.

Rene made me a delicious cooked breakfast this morning and it was just what I needed. He's spent the day calling people, cleaning up birth pools and blood etc, tending to kids needs and helping me to the bathroom. He's done some baby snuggling too. He's my hero. I can't express how deeply I appreciate and depend on his patience, forgiveness, support, love, affection and faith in me. This was such a team effort, and he makes me feel so special. I am so blessed.

Check out our adorably handsome new guy!

Monday, November 22, 2010

My ordinary boy

I want to tell you about my boy. He has an ordinary name - Glenn. But we never call him that. He goes by Turtle which fits him much better.

He's no ordinary boy. He loves to dress up in his sister's dresses, he loves to use their underpants as a "foofy" comfort item while he sucks his thumb, he loves to play with their ponies just as much as his cars and weapons, he's extremely affectionate and loves to snuggle and say, "I love you" many times a day, he loves Dora the explorer and Strawberry shortcake, he loves dancing and singing and winning us all over with his charm.

And this was his hair.

It really suited his personality. Easy going, non stereotypical, soft and flowing, uber natural.

But people kept calling him a her. Or a she. He may not be stereotypical boy but he is certainly all boy. Maybe not like your boy or your neighbor's boy, because he is neither of those. He is Turtle. A boy Turtle. I could tolerate the gender confusions well enough, but his hair was constantly in his eyes and he hated having it brushed. He'd cry and scream.

So we decided the time had come to have his hair cut for the first time. We took him to our favorite cost effective barber shop and ask the lady to make it short at the back but keep the length at the front. She responded by talking aggressively for about 5 minutes in Chinese with her colleagues while Rene and I smiled nervously and gulped heavily and hoped for the best as she started snipping off his beautiful baby locks. He sat perfectly still the whole time in his chair, drowning in the big protective cover, he was just a little baby face poking out of a mass of black cover and rejected snips of beautiful white, soft hair. I think he rather enjoyed the pampering.

She got his hair looking *just* how I wanted it. A surfer dude sort of style - long at the front and short at the back. I gave lots of praise and was ready to welcome him back into my arms, but she just kept snipping! And snipping and snipping and my heart about stopped. I made sure to say about another 3 times that I want to keep length in the front. One time she responded with, "Is he girl or boy? Well then, I cut it boy".

I was hovering over him and biting my nails and was about ready to just pull the lady off of him and throw her scissors to the other side of the room. I kept looking to Rene for support but...well...Turtle's easy going attitude definitely comes from his Daddy. Rene was just smiling and admiring the pretty pattern of the wall tiles.

Eventually she asked me, "will I cut more?" and I enthusiastically pleaded with her not to! So she released her captive and I swept up this tiny boy who now seemed like a stranger. I couldn't stop staring at him for the rest of the day. What bothers me most is he looks like any ordinary boy. Just another American kid. No distinguishing factor. And that really troubled me.

But I've come to realize that just because his appearance is one of any ordinary boy, he is still 100% Turtle. He's still completely charming even if his hair doesn't represent it. He's still quirky and endearing, just like his Dad. And yes, I intend to let it grow! I must admit, he wears this ordinary hairstyle much cuter than most ordinary boys do. :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Philosophies of a 3 year old

I like to try to teach my kids Christian values, like turn the other cheek and blessed are those who are poor in spirit. To be humble and patient and to do unto others yada yada.

But they quickly pick up on an alternative ethos, one heavily promoted in today's America: - The customer is always right!

And Zoe has well and truly picked up on this. She's a savvy little shopper already. She adores her little pink princess purse that I snagged for a quarter at a yard sale for her. She carries it around, jingling her coins and selecting her next purchases with caution.

We were at JoAnn's fabric store, where Zoe usually delights in running rampant, hiding from us between rolls of fabric and leaving a trail of knocked down rolls and destruction behind her. But this time she was somewhat calmer, because she was on a mission to spend some allowance. They have a nice little section of kids craft items for $1, and Zoe found a pack of elmo crayons that she fell in love with.

So she took them to the checkout, and placed them on the counter. The lady gave her a total of $1.08 and Zoe was not at all amused. She became very animated, her purse swinging against one hip and her hand on her other, a look of aghast on her face, her jaw fell to the floor and she said with much intonation, "A dollar eight?! That's TEH-WIBBLE!!!"

The lady at the checkout smirked a little, but remained professional and composed while she hit a button on her cashier till, giving Zoe an instant 50% discount. "How does 54c sound?". "Yes, that's bedder".

What's the point in trying to teach her that complaining gets you nowhere. It quite obviously gets you something. It gets you Elmo crayons for half off, I mean, what more could a 3 year old want?

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Queen Of My Heart

She had this babygro/sleepsuit with pink and white and purple stripes and glittery sparkles on it. So I called her my Sparkle Queen.

We used to have lazy mornings together. I was tired from the lack of sleep that most new parents are familiar with. So I'd grab a sandwich from the fridge that Rene had prepared for me earlier, and I'd plop myself on the couch with a cover and my wee baby beside me. She loved it. She had her mum all to herself, lots of hugs and milk on demand. We'd just nurse and watch British morning TV and take it easy, spending sweet time with my lovely little girl.

One such morning, when she was almost 10 weeks old, we were watching This Morning and they were interviewing boy band Westlife about their newest single, The Queen Of My Heart. I half watched, but I was too busy squeaking lovely little baby cheeks to pay much attention. They then performed their new song and it was the perfect opportunity for a little dance with my own Queen. I didn't listen to many of the lyrics, they didn't seem very fitting anyway. But that one line, The Queen Of My Heart, well the title fit this little girl perfectly. So I dedicated it to her and danced with her on the couch, holding her up in front of me and bopping her gently from side to side while she looked at back me somewhat unamused but not disturbed. She was quite accustomed to me being silly.

A few days later I was shopping for an outfit to wear to her funeral. It was surreal and horrible. It didn't feel like I was really there, or like I was really me. People were rushing about in the middle of their mundane business while I tried on black dresses that were not at all my style. And then I had a moment of familiarity, when I was projected back into myself momentarily. Over the store's speaker system they played Westlife's Queen Of My Heart. I sat on the chair beside my broken husband and cried without regard for our appearance in this public place full of pretend people, while my mum tried to ease some of my burden by rushing around choosing various sizes and styles for me to try on. I sat waiting for my selection and I listened to the song, to all of the lyrics this time and they fit. As much as a cheesy boy band song can fit something so profound anyway.

A few days later after a very powerful service that moved my spirit, my husband carried a painfully small white box with our daughter's name on the outside and a body she no longer needed on the inside. And at our request, they played the song Queen Of My Heart through the speakers while he took all he had left in him and marched this box out the door of the church with gentleness and pride. And the words fit.

Westlife - Queen Of My Heart
So here we stand
In our secret place
With the sound of the crowd
So far away
And you take my hand
And it feels like home
We both understand
It's where we belong

So how do I say?
Do I say goodbye?
We both have our dreams
We both wanna fly
So let's take tonight
To carry us through
The lonely times

I'll always look back
As I walk away
This memory
Will last for eternity
And all of our tears
Will be lost in the rain
When I've found my way
Back to your arms again
But until that day
You know you are
The queen of my heart

So let's take tonight
And never let go
While dancing we'll kiss
Like there's no tomorrow
As the stars sparkle down
Like a diamond ring
I'll treasure this moment
Till we meet again

But no matter how far
Or where you may be
I just close my eyes
And you're in my dreams
And there you will be
Until we meet

Jessika Heather Burton Docherty (Peach)
Aug 29 - Nov 9 2001

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A couple of Halloween specials for ya!!

My big girls have been busy planning and putting together their webshows for Halloween.

I love this week's iKaya. Some amusing segments and some impressive talents. There's even a wardrobe change in this one. And of course, Daddy was subject to a little embarrassment as usual.

And here is iStormy. Usually all the post production is done by Uncle Doug. But I put together this iStormy and it shows hehe. The beginning credits are still done by my brother, and I used his clips for transitions and the theme song etc. I'm new to this so go easy on me. :)
Lana was certainly very enthusiastic this time. Lots of energy.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My favorite time of day

Yes I'm talking about when the kids go through to bed. But no, I don't mean for obvious reasons (a little peace and quiet!).

My favorite part of the day is sending the kids off to bed. Because it's all about unconditional love. We have this routine, the kids come to me for kisses (usually 5 kisses but sometimes they ask for double) and cuddles and prayers and sometimes I sing their individual songs, or the chorus of them.

For the record, Kaya's song is "Heaven Is Missing An Angel" by 98 degrees.
Lana's is "Baby You Belong" by Faith Hill
Zoe's is "Sweet, sweet baby" by Michelle Featherstone
Turtle's is "The Heart of Life" by John Mayer
And for baby Ally, I've been singing "I Will Not Take My Love Away" by Matt Wertz

So we do their kisses and cuddles, prayers and sometimes songs. And I send them off to the room where Daddy reads them stories 'til they fall asleep. And my favorite part is, no matter what kind of a day we've had, no matter how hormonal I've been, or what kind of ups and downs we've had, we always say the same phrase as they trot off to their bedroom, "Sleep tight, sweet dreams, see you in the morning good night, I love you". And for the next 5 minutes they continue to shout, "I LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!" from the bedroom.

How many people, after a hard, emotional, draining day, get to hear 4 sweet, little voices shouting, "I LOVE YOU!!!" for 5 minutes from the room next door? It's always enough to make me smile and remember that I really am loved unconditionally by those kids. And I want to earn it. It's very motivating. And very special. I don't take it for granted.

Monday, September 27, 2010

How is the pregnancy, how are my dreads?

I'm not sure I could exactly call this an FAQ, but I have been asked a few times about the pregnancy and the dreads, so I figured I'd give an update.

Pregnancy is all going wonderfully. I am in the third trimester now and feeling it. I'm pretty tired and my mood....well, I overheard the girls talking about how when ladies are pregnant it makes them extra grumpy. I'm thinking they must have read that in a book or something, how else would they know such a thing?

Yeah I've been a little edgy. But baby Ally seems to be growing strong and healthy. There have been no problems so far, and I'm hoping it will stay that way. I think we have a bit of an Irish Dancer brewing in there. The amount of kicks and punches are unreal. It's a great feeling, though somewhat annoying when baby decides to rehearse riverdance on my cervix or bladder...I still love knowing I am sharing my body with another human, and I'm growing a person. It's awesome.

So yeah, no major drama in that area. We're looking forward to our Christmas time baby and are savoring the pregnancy as much as possible. Despite possibly some grumpiness. Just a little.

My dreads are over a year old now. They're still not mature dreads, they are still a project in the making. But they're coming on a bit. They started off July 2009, looking like this

And then they seriously shrunk as they started to tighten

And they pretty much haven't grown a whole lot since then. I think they are just now starting to gain some length back. Here's the most recent pics I have.

I'm enjoying them. They're much less work now than they were at the beginning. I do need to do a rip and palmroll session pretty soon, but I am putting it off since it makes me grumpy and...well...I think we've established that I don't need any extra help in that area.

So now you know how my pregnancy and dreads are doing. You can all finally sleep well tonight. Phew.

Other than sewing diapers and trying my hand out on sewing some other things too, which I will no doubt showcase here at some point, I've been busy entering blog giveaways again. Like crazy. I figure in the run up to Christmas, I can use all the help I can get.
So far, in the past few weeks, I've won: A pizza costume from anytime costumes, an apron from All Moms Go To Heaven, some carbon odor reducing hanger thingies from Fresh Hanger, a Gogurt pack, a kids music CD, a kids reading program, some cloth baby wipes, a Rattle 'n' Roll, 3 months subscription to Zoodles and a maternity (organic) tshirt worth $40. Not a bad start.
Feel free to check out my other blog, where I list giveaways that I'm entering here if you fancy a shot.

I am hoping to get my photoshop laptop fixed up soon so I can get back to editing pics and blogging up a storm with cute photos etc. The keyboard is wrecked on it, and it's a pain in the bottom to try to type by clicking on individual letters in the tablet software.

And that's about all my news for now.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

iKaya - episode 15

Monday, September 6, 2010

My latest obsession

I am a faddy type of person. I like to have new jobs or hobbies or projects to keep hold of my attention. As soon as it starts to become sort of habitual I tend to move on to a new challenge. It's just how I am.

Combine that with the fact that I'm in nesting mode expecting a new baby and voila, we have a nice, new, productive obsession for me. Making cloth diapers.

It started off with me stumbling upon this free diaper pattern, which is a one size fits all, super adjustable and versatile diaper. And it looked easy enough. And I thought, hey, I could do that. Why not? The fuzzi bunz Turtle is using are so old now, the elastic is shot and stitching is coming loose. They still work, but we have had them since Kaya was a baby...we could use some new dipes for sure. Our kissaluvs were awesome, but didn't hold out for long in the wash. And the applix on the Bum Genius is just no good at all.

So what the heck, I'll try making a diaper. Ok...dust off the sewing machine. Then call on my husband and ask him to teach me how to use the darn thing. I don't sew. I just don't. I've never been any good at it. If a teddy bear rips, the kids ask their Dad to repair it. Me and sewing, we just don't get along. I have no spacial awareness and am way too clumsy.

So then it's a challenge...and I'm in the mood for a challenge.

And now, I showcase my first ever home sewn cloth diaper. Made out of flannel receiving blankets I bought from yard sales for like 10c each. It's extremely messy, clumsy and sad looking. But it's functional. And I made it all by myself!

It's reversible

Because I had so much fun making that one, I decided to cut up an old tshirt and sew it into a diaper

And a couple blankets

Here's a modelling shot of that one

So then I bought some snap pliers and a new pattern and made this diaper out of an old denim looking cotton shirt

Then I came across another pattern I liked better. This is the Darling Diaper Unlimited pattern and it rocks. Yeah...any true hobby end up costing money, right? I made this out of a shirt I bought for 50c at a yard sale, I bought it specifically for making diapers. It's so stretchy and soft.

Microfleece inner. So soft.

So there's my first little stash, super cost effective.

Next I attempted to make a cover.

with leg gussets

And an ooga booga diaper

And a tartan diaper. Och aye. (yes, it's Daddy's favorite)

And then I started on some wittle teensie diapers for wee baby Ally. Broodiness in overdrive.

I've made some more since then, but haven't uploaded the pics yet. I'm still making tons of mistakes and I have a looooooooong way to go until I'll be good at this sewing palaver. But I'm having a ton of fun and am getting better.

The biggest downside is I haven't dreamed about anything other than making diapers in like 3 weeks. It's getting a bit old by now.

But ya know, it really isn't all that difficult. It's very rewarding, saves money, is good for the environment to use cloth, and it's so much fun to stick a bit of fluff on my baby's bum that I sewed up all by myself.

So that's my latest obsession.