Welcoming a New Year

This past year was a bit of a rollercoaster.  About two years ago I felt my life was truly perfect and it scared me.  I felt that it couldn’t stay that way forever and I was right.  However, I’ve come to find that what you think of, you attract. So in some way I almost brought in that wave of challenges, thankfully I didn’t drown in it.

My biggest learning experience this past year was getting over myself.  I had to let go of the past and things that were holding me back from continuing my future.  I had to accept what cannot be and what I cannot change and instead focus on what I have power over. I learned to stop comparing myself to other people, your journey is your own and you must learn to embrace it if you are to enjoy it. Continue reading

Family Fun Friday #2

This weeks’ family outing idea: Pick your own farm.

I know I mention CSA programs all the time but this is another way to get to know your local farmers and get your kids involved.

It’s been some time since we had the chance to get the kids out to our local farms. A few years ago we took our daughters to Cal Poly Pomona during strawberry season where they had “Pick your own basket”. Continue reading

Family Fun Friday

Let’s face it, as parents we tend to do activities that revolve around the kids. Yes, there are the few occasions when someone offers to babysit or you decide to get a babysitter for the night. All other times, going out means going out with the kids. I don’t believe in catering to kids and asking “where do you want to go?!”… because questions like that are attached to answers like “McDonalds!” or “Chuck-E-Cheese”, and if you have the nerve to ask a five year old that question, you probably deserve that answer.

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Off to Kindergarten Part 2

I think my fear of my daughter starting school is unfounded. It might have to do with the fact that the first day of Kindergarten was one of the most traumatic days of my young life which I still carry vividly in my memories along with all the scary things that happened to me as a child. Life can be scary when you’re less than 3 feet tall and your Salvadorian mom is constantly yelling at you.

First, you must know that Spanish is my first language and when I say this I mean I didn’t know a lick of English until my mom dropped me off for Kindergarten. That first day all the kids were there with parents, I suppose it was orientation day. I like to call it “give a small child false hope of what school is going to be like” day.

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Off to Kindergarten! Part 1

My daughter is on summer vacation, she gets almost three months before starting kindergarten. She can’t wait to get started but as the date approaches I find myself realizing more and more how fast time passes and I wish I had one more year with her at home.

Having a baby again has made me remember all the little things my daughter doesn’t need from me anymore. The nighttime feedings, the diaper changes, even dressing her are all things of the past. I look at cute little baby girl rompers and it makes me sad to think I don’t have a little girl to dress up however I want anymore. Now it’s all about what she wants to wear and with what shoes, this fashionista can never be swayed from her wardrobe decisions.

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Babies and Coconut Oil

One of the reasons I started using cloth diapers was because I was of the terrible rashes my daughter used to get with disposables. Upon learning the basics of cloth diapers, I also learned what is safe to use with cloth in case a rash appears: organic unrefined coconut oil.

Coconut oil has a very low melting point so it won’t coat cloth diapers causing them to repel. It is a great skin moisturizer and has tons of other uses.

You can cook with it (so delicious for popping corn), moisturize your skin and hair. It is good for treating skin rashes, stretch marks, and eczema. It has antibacterial and antiviral properties and I also good for your metabolism… Amazing! Personally, I used it to treat my baby’s cradle cap: I applied it to his scalp after each bath and brush his head with a cradle cap brush.

Regardless of whether or not you are cloth diapering, after learning so much about the benefits of coconut oil, I believe it’s a good idea to keep a jar of coconut oil handy. With so many possible uses, you’ll be finding yourself using it all the time.

A few tips on purchasing coconut oil:

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Having kids, losing friends

Changes in your life happen, it’s inevitable. A downfall of having children at a young age (I suppose it happens at any age but this is from my personal experience) is the loss of friendships.

When you first break the news you will be sure to find lots of congratulations and encouragement. Not all friends will lose touch during a pregnancy, some will wait until the baby is here to skip out. It sucks, but it’s the moment you realize who your real friends are.

I’m not sure if people assume that having kids equals not having time for anyone else. Maybe it’s the assumption that having a baby changes you so much that you no longer have anything in common. It could be that making plans in general is hard, lets not factor in the problems that come with planning things with kids. Sorry, my daughter wakes up sick sometimes or my plans for childcare have a tendency to fall through. We don’t mean to be flakes but it happens. These friendships require patience.

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Cloth Diapering: It’s not too late to start

Cloth diapering doesn’t have to start from birth or during the newborn stage. Maybe you’ve just gotten into the groove of being a mom and caring for a baby for the first time. Now that the overwhelming part is over, maybe you’re looking into what other moms are doing with their babies right now. Explore the world of cloth diapers, you might fall in love!

Beyond all the different types and styles of cloth diapers, there are tons of colors and patterns available. These aren’t you grandma’s diapers…

Bumgenius 4.0 Pockets

Encouragement for Breastfeeding Moms (who want to give up)

My mother weaned me off at 13 months. This came after an incident at a law office where I walked over to her, said “Mama chi-che!!” and proceeded to pull her buttoned blouse open for all to see. The next day she put peanut butter on her nipple and convinced me it was “caca“, I never nursed again.

Apparently, weaning my sister was not as easy. I guess she was just more astute as an infant than I. When my mom did the peanut butter bit she looked at it confused, wiped it off with her hand and proceeded to latch on. It would take the bitter taste of mustard to convince her that the “chi-che” was no longer in service.

When I gave birth to my daughter, I knew I would be breastfeeding. Little did I know how hard the beginning would be. First, the whole process of nurses man-handling my breasts was uncomfortable to say the least. Then they hooked me up to a medical grade breast pump and I thought my nipples were going to fall off. The next two weeks were not any better. Honestly, I had no idea what I was doing and the bad latch was doing terrible things to my skin.
I reached out for help, I visited the lactation consultant and sought advice from a close friend who had breastfed. The thing that stuck with me was “IT WILL GET BETTER”.

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Cloth diapering: Getting started

Once my son was born, I knew I would soon be starting cloth diapering him. I must admit, I was apprehensive at first. The idea of washing diapers and not bring sure if I was doing it right was pretty scary.

I had one pack of newborn size disposables that I had received at our baby shower. My goal was to not buy any disposables. At about three weeks of age, once his umbilical stump fell off and the circumcision had healed, I knew it was time.

My diaper had been prepped and assembled for a while at that point. I began with 4 a day, only during the day. I had based my stash mostly on gDiapers with a two pack of Bumgenius 4.0 one size. The gDiapers are so cute! However, my whole plan on cloth diapers would soon change.

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