We went to our favorite restaurant and took little girl with us. I brought a plate/placemat duo that has a suction cup on the bottom to keep said baby from tossing said plate off of the table. The server who is the owner and knows us well (we are regulars) was quite impressed with the idea. “The things they come up with these days” she said as we all laughed in agreement about how cool it was. “I wish they had something like that when my boy was little”. I demonstrate by trying to pull it off and it doesn’t go anywhere. It worked quite well for momma.
Then baby got a hold of it. Not two seconds after the server left the table, she had pulled the plate up. I looked at daddy… “maybe it needs to be wet first, like the suction cup holders in the shower, you know, since those always hold up- ha!” Anyway, I try it wet. Nope. I clean it off. Nope. I keep smooshing it down again at different angles and ways to see if it will stick. Nope. She keeps figuring out how to pull it off. So for the rest of the meal, Daddy holds one side down while I hold the other. FAIL!
Do you think I’m excited about this or traumatized? Maybe a little of both… haha!
So, I decided to be adventurous. I’m reading a book called “Montessori from the Start” since I’m really fascinated by the Montessori philosophy. One of the ideas of Montessori is that children should play with real and natural things as opposed to all of these plastic toys that are everywhere. They need to be outside experiencing nature… such as playing with grass, dirt, rocks, sticks, and probably bugs (eek!). Really though, if you think about, we are such an inside culture with electronics everywhere. It’s funny that all the toys you buy have something listed about your child’s development such as textures, colors, sounds etc. These are all qualities that mimic things in the real world!
Anyway, to get to my story. I was in an adventurous mood and it was such a pretty day. So, I took Clara to the Botanical Gardens for a picnic. I decided I was going to let her crawl around and experience the real world- outside of our living room full of plastic toys. She loved the feel of the grass between her toes and tried to pull it out of the ground. She was fascinated by the mulch in the rose garden. She looked up at the sky through the trees in wonder and pointed as if to reach up and touch it. Then she started playing in the dirt. I decided I’d get out my camera to take a picture of this exploration. After I snapped the picture and take a second to look at it… thinking I was so proud of myself for relaxing enough to let her play in the dirt.
Then! She shoves a handful of dirt in her mouth. I hurriedly dig in her mouth to get it out, probably with a look of panic on my face. She looks at me in bewilderment, which she is known to do. There are little flecks of dirt on her lips. Of course, in that moment I realize I could take a harmless experience and create a fearful experience for her. Then I stop myself. I realize this is an opportunity to break the cycle of fear that I come by honestly (don’t worry Mom, you know I love you :). So I decide, “eh, what’s a little dirt? There could have been a bug in there, maybe some bark, hopefully not an remnants of a cigarette butt- there I go again… BUT it’s not like she swallowed a tarantula or something. She’ll be fine.”
Start all over again. Thanks Jerome Kern and Dorothy Fields! I love fun songs with positive messages I can teach my sweet Clara. I like to sing this one while she’s learning to walk. She took 6 steps on her own a couple of weeks ago. It happened by accident when she wasn’t thinking. She was holding on to a doll and my hand. She didn’t realize I let go and kept on walking! Then she fell on the hardwood floor. Boom! “Uh oh” I said and laughed. I find that this reaction leads to much less drama when she hurts herself. This week she’s been much more cautious, holding onto to my finger while I walk along with her. Then when she falls, she looks back up with a smile and reaches up for my finger. So cute!
Another encouraging song we’ve been singing in music class this week from the World Playground Putumayo CD is Just keep going on by Eric Bibb. “Just keep going on. Take every knock as a boost and every stumbling block as a stepping stone. Lift up your head, hold your own, just keep going on.”
And one of my very favorites of Bob Marley we listened to a lot the first 3 months of her life is Three Little Birds. “Don’t worry, ’bout a thing. Cause every little thing’s gonna be all right”…Pretty meaningful when you’ve got a new life you are responsible for!
So I bought a Bum Genius diaper sprayer and installed it all by myself. I watched some helpful youtube videos beforehand to get a visual. I must say I’m so glad I came across a demo of someone trying the sprayer for the first time and spraying poop all over the bathroom… because that would definitely have happened to me.
For reals though, in order to get the smooshy poo out of the diaper that makes it into the crevices, you have to put it on full blast and there just ain’t no way of gettin’ outta there without droplets flying everywhere. Weee!! Splat!! I feel bad for the droplets, but I suppose it’s their destiny. Better to end it quick then to sit and stew in a diaper genie all week I guess. Anyhoo, I tell myself that the bits of water that land on my legs are only water and not poop. “Julie, the bits of water that land on your legs are only water and not poop.” That’s what I tell myself. And I feel cleaner.
Now have you ever tried spraying a cloth wipe? Well, if your baby did a really messy job and has been crawling and bouncing around in it for more than 5 minutes, then let’s just say your cloth wipe is going to feel important. The only thing is, you can’t really spray a wipe. The force of the sprayer would send it flying across the room. Weeee!!! Glop!! So, it’s dunk time. But then it’s so saturated with mud water that when you put it into the diaper pail, you just hope that the drops (not dropLETS because they’re quite a bit more substantial) don’t land on the bathmat for you to step in later when you’re wearing socks. You see, stepping in an unsuspecting wet spot with socks on is just really annoying, especially when you know there could be a tiny bit of poopage in it.
So, am I glad I bought a diaper sprayer? Yes. With a little practice and technique on a good day, the benefit far outweighs the cost. Plus, it can be used for other things… as a bidet (not that I’ve ever used one before), or as an extra shower wand since it’s close enough to the bathtub, or even to spray someone in the face as a practical joke. I don’t know.
Lil’ C is not a quiet pooper. It sounds like fireworks are going off in her diaper. As a newborn, sometimes the poopage made its way through the diaper, through her onesie, and on to me. In fact, one time it actually got on the arm chair. Many of her outfits have little brown stains on the back from major blowouts. So much for pampers and huggies. 7th Generation and Earth’s Best contained her fanfares pretty well though. I finally made the transition to cloth diapers a few months ago. From what I’ve heard about the new fancy shmancy diapers, blowouts are minimized depending on the brand of diapers… and your own baby’s brand for that matter. 😉 I bought a multi-pack from The Green Bambino in Oklahoma City and I must say, we haven’t had any blowouts yet with any of the brands!
While I’m on the train to poopville, I might as well tell you a story from when she was a newborn. It was bath time. I undressed her on the bed and carried her ten long feet to the bath tub when all of the sudden she started to pee. I was inches away from the tub and just stood there frozen as pee dribbled down my shirt, pants, and legs. All the while she was just smiling away. Why didn’t I think fast and move her a few more inches to make it into the tub? After bath, I hurriedly jumped in the shower to wash off while Daddy held her in his lap. As I was drying off I heard a call of distress from the living room. “Jubers! Bring me a towel!” This time, it wasn’t just pee…
Clara was needing some extra soothing at bedtime tonight. For whatever reason, she was having a hard time winding down. I was rocking her in the rocking chair, which she rarely lets me do. She’s never been a fan of the sit and rock. She’s more of a stand and bounce baby. But tonight the timing was right and she relaxed in my arms.
Since I had already sung lullabies and patted/ssh’d her, I just sat and rocked in silence so as not to stimulate her further. Then she started to hum. The contour of what she was singing was of one of the lullabies I frequently sing to her, Su La Li. So, I joined in and we hummed together. It was a magical moment. Then I noticed her holding the resting tone of the song as I sang the melody. So I decided to change keys and she changed her resting tone! I was amazed. She kept humming along but in the new key. When I started to sing a new lullaby, she changed yet again with me. For the next 15 minutes or so, I sang 5 or 6 different lullabies in different keys and she continued to sing with me. I was in heaven.
Clara is not a fan of having the snot sucked out of her nose and I’m not sure I’ve heard of a baby who is a fan. So, when I heard about the nasal aspirator that plays lullabies, I thought… genius!! Clara loves music, so it will distract her. Wrong! The buzzing motor probably scared the heck out of her, not to mention it’s about the size of her arm. I guess if something that big and loud was coming towards my face, I’d be scared too!! So, it’s back to the ol’ bulb syringe. Hopefully mommy will get the technique down so it’s quick and easy. Either that or I’m going to have to figure out how to suck them out… did I just say that? eeeewwww!!!!