What’s in Our Diaper Bag?

Diaper Bag Tour -- www.mommyzoid.com

I have always been one to either forget all the important stuff or over-pack. Thankfully since becoming a mom, I’m doing more of the latter and less of the former. When it comes to our diaper bag, I am a stickler for keeping it organized and having a place for everything. The Ju-Ju-Be Be Prepared makes this possible. It’s got more pockets and pouches than you can shake a stick at.

For a cloth diapering family, this bag gives us ample room to stick all those big fluffy diapers. Our previous bag wasn’t cutting the mustard when it came to carrying cloth diapers. Either the diapers or the bag had to go and guess who stuck around. The bag comes from JuJuBe’s new Legacy line. The whole line is very elegant and classy. I love that they are very neutral in colour (read: go with anything). This bag is my new purse so it can’t clash with my outfit, ya hear?

Diaper Bag Tour -- www.mommyzoid.com

If you think the outside of the bag is insanely awesome and to die for, the inside will blow your socks off!

Diaper Bag Tour -- www.mommyzoid.com

In the top pouch we keep garbage bags and our wet bag. I made this wet bag using scrap fabric from our decorative throw pillows on the couch and it’s lined with PUL which is a waterproof fabric used in the cloth diapering world.

There are four pockets on the top of the inside of the bag. In one of them we keep a change of clothes (onesie, socks, shorts, etc.) and in another we keep sunglasses, a hat, and a bibdana. On the other side of the bag we keep Homemade Organics by Jen diaper cream, back up soothers, baby tylenol, a liquid tylenol syringe and some baby wash clothes for messes.

Inside the main bag we keep a “hooter-hider” for breastfeeding, an Aden + Anais swaddle blanket , a jacket or sweater, several Charlie Banana cloth diapers, back up disposable diapers, Huggies Clutch N Clean , and of course Sophie the Giraffe.

Diaper Bag Tour -- www.mommyzoid.com

There are two pouches on the inside perfect for bottles. We usually stash some Enfamil single serve packets along with some empty bottles. On the outside of the bag there is an insulated pocket on either end of the bag I use to hold pumped breast milk with a small ice pack to keep it cool.

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On the very front of the bag is the “mommy pocket”. In it I keep my car keys, wallet, coupons (such a mom!), cell phone and sunglasses.

Diaper Bag Tour -- www.mommyzoid.com

Diaper Bag Tour -- www.mommyzoid.com

Wooph. That’s a lot of stuff. But such is the life of a mom, am I right?

What are your diaper bag must haves? Do you think I pack to much!?

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PS:  I’ll be linking up here with hundreds of other bloggers to share our work!

Diaper Laundry: Our Routine at the Cottage

Cloth Diaper Laundry: Cottage Edition via www.mommyzoid.com

 

We’ve been using cloth on Oliver since he was one day old and I don’t think either of us would have it any other way. It’s been so simple and not as stressful as one would expect. One area you can run into issues is when it comes to washing those suckers. If not done correctly, you can get a whole bunch of different problems that can be annoying to try and trouble shoot. I’m by no means an expert when it comes to cloth but I am learning as we go.

Cloth Diaper Laundry: Cottage Edition via www.mommyzoid.com

For the first few months of our son’s life, we have been living at our families cottage. The cottage does have a washer and dryer which has made things seamless for continuing on with cloth even while we’re not at home. The only downside is the water come straight from the lake so it can have a bit of an odour.

Cloth Diaper Laundry: Cottage Edition via www.mommyzoid.com

 

Cloth Diaper Laundry: Cottage Edition via www.mommyzoid.com

Our routine has been working really well for us. We’re using older style top loaders to do our wash. This matters because the old guys tend to use more water than the new fancy high efficient guys. More water = better in the cloth diaper world. We do a nice cold soak for 30 minutes and end with a spin. Then we do a hot wash, cold rinse, and spin with 2.5 scoops of Nellie’s All Natural Laundry soda We love that Nellies has nothing harmful in it like fragrances or dyes because lets be honest, these diapers touch some pretty sensitive areas. After this we might do another cold rinse and spin to make sure all the soaps out. Then it’s out on the line for a nice sun bleaching or into the dryer if it’s a rotten day. Did you know the sun has the ability to get stains on bright white again? I didn’t know this until I began  cloth diapering. *PRO TIP: sun bleaching works best when the articles are wet.

Cloth Diaper Laundry: Cottage Edition via www.mommyzoid.com

 

Cloth Diaper Laundry: Cottage Edition via www.mommyzoid.com

Easy peasy lemon squeezey! No, we don’t spend half our days doing diaper laundry. It takes up minimal time and saves us SO  much money. We love cloth, it’s worked well for us, and we hope you love it too!

Are you debating using cloth diaper on your children? What are some reasons why you wouldn’t cloth diaper?

Happy Cloth Diapering!

mommyzoid sig w name

3 months

Little Ollie is growing up right before our eyes. We are really enjoying celebrating his milestones. 

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This last month he’s really started looking at our faces and is really recognizing family. He knows that faces are how we communicate. He scans up your body until you reaches your face then gives the biggest gummy grin. TOO CUTE. 

He’s also getting extremely strong in his legs. He was always really strong and always liked standing up and weight barring. 

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He had his first laugh this month! Daddy and I were playing with him and laughing when all of a sudden he gave a little chuckle. It wasn’t like his usual cooing and talking it was a “HUH HUH HUH!!”. We started laughing and he did it again! Priceless. Then I bawled my eyes out. SLOW YOUR GROWING DOWN, SON.

He’s been sleeping longer and longer at night. He went from 2 feedings at night to 1 to sleeping ten hours straight! It’s been a remarkable month, sleep wise. 

He is SO alert and always chatting away. I love hearing him babble and blow bubbles. He’s  super happy and very calm. He’s happy to just chill out and take in the sights and sounds.

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Nursery: Reading Nook

Ollie’s nursery was well on it’s way to being completed many months ago, well before he was even close to being fully cooked. We knew if it didn’t get done before he was born it would never be completed. Now that he’s here, I’m gathering ideas to put the finishing touches on the space.

Baby Boy nursery ideas

Baby boy nursery ideas

Words I would use to describe the feeling we are going for:

  • Fresh
  • Bright
  • Clean lines
  • Cozy/Cuddly
  • Nature/Natural

With fall on its way I know we will be spending more than our fair share of days indoors and I want to get his room feeling like a place where we’d want to spend our days laughing and learning together. My answer to that is to create a reading nook. Reading is an activity we’ve shared together as a family since he was in the womb and now that he’s here we cuddle together every night before bed and read some stories and he stares at the pictures. It’s so lovely.

I want to be able to have a few books on display, almost as art work. I want to use a piece of dancing moulding as a ledge to rest the books against the wall without them toppling over.

 

curtesy of mommo-design.blogspot.it
curtesy of mommo-design.blogspot.it

Our comfort is key or else the space is useless. Big feather stuffed pillows with geometric patterns in bright colours will cover the area so we can lay down and snuggle.

Curtesy of annipalanni.blogspot.com.es
Curtesy of annipalanni.blogspot.com.es

I can picture a little reading teepee in the space but from what I’ve seen in the blog world, the traditional teepee shape takes up some valuable real estate in terms of Ollie’s room. I’m going to need to fan-dangle it so it can fold up and be put in a closet or behind the door!

curtesy of jenandjercook.blogspot.ca
curtesy of jenandjercook.blogspot.ca

Are you noticing a theme here? BLACK AND WHITE STRIPES! We are really loving the simplicity. Not to mention you can pair it with any other colours and it looks great. It’s so classic and clean!

A trip to IKEA is in our near future. I’ll update you once things come a little further together.

August Favorites

With the summer coming to an end, I thought it would be appropriate to share what we’ve found has worked well for our family so far:

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Boba Organic Carrier | JU*JU*BE BePrapared Nellies Laundry Soda | Snuza Hero | Aden + Anais Bamboo Swaddle

 

Boba Organic Cotton Carrier

When I need to use both my hands, I put Ollie in the Boba and away we go. The first time I used it, I nearly cried. When you spend all day alone with a new baby, you tend to skip out on important things like peeing. It sounds crazy but once you’re a mother, those little things go on the back burner. Having a hot, sit down, lunch was the nicest treat! Babies love to be carried close and tend to doze off when in that position. Thank you, Boba.

 

JU-JU-BE BePrepared

I nearly had to sell a few organs to afford my new diaper bag. But I’m in love. It was a treat yo self kind of splurge. The thing I didn’t realize about diaper bags is that they become mom’s purse! That bags with us wherever we go. My previous diaper bag was way too small, especially for his massive cloth diapers. I know we will still be using this bag for years to come. It also makes a great overnighter or carry on as there is no tell tale diaper-bag-ness. Yup, worth every penny!

 

Nellies All Natural Laundry Detergent

We wash all Oliver’s clothes and diapers in Nellies. Maybe it’s a baby thing but he gets red and rashy very easily, although the marks never last long, it’s great to know it isn’t our laundry detergent that’s causing it. A bonus is P’lovers in Kingston (where we are staying with babe for the time being) refills the tins at a discounted price! Lets hope P’lovers in Halifax does the same…

 

Snuza Hero

I can’t say enough about the Snuza. This little sucker clips onto babies diaper while sleeping and will vibrate and sound an alarm to alert us that baby isn’t breathing. This helps us sleep at night knowing if anything were to be happening to him in his crib, we would wake up and help him. I would recommend this to any mom that wants to get a few peaceful hours of sleep.

 

Aden + Anais Bamboo Swaddling Blanket

We never really swaddled our newborn but when we did, it was in an Aden + Anais. These suckers are as soft as butter, look amazing, and double as a great scarf! I love cuddling with his blankies. When he naps, I curl up with one of these and snooze right along beside him. These make a welcome addition to any nursery.

fail to plan and plan to fail

Husband and I decided to take babyzoid into town. Remember town = a boat ride away. and I’m not talking about a ferry boat here. We take a little pleasure craft across Lake Ontario into Kingston. Don’t ask me about what kind of boat. All that matters is that is floats. 

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So in order to go into town with the 3 month old, we need:

  • stroller
  • car seat
  • diaper bag
    • 3 cloth diapers
    • wet bag
    • 2 changes of clothes
    • blanket
    • sophie
    • sou-sou (sp)
    • pre-pumped milk
  • life jacket
  • ear muffs (boats are LOUD)

Now pre-baby we could decide at the drop of a hat to zip into town for ice cream or grocery shopping. Now I have to do as much planning, packing, and preparing as one would do for a 2 week vacation. Not really, but sometimes it feels like it. 

Now I have to worry about things like: WHAT IF IT RAINS? WHAT IF IT GETS TOO HOT? WHAT IF WE RUN OUT OF GAS FOR THE BOAT? WHAT IF WE CAN’T EVER GET BACK TO THE ISLAND AND HELL FREEZES OVER? You know, regular mom stuff.

But the planning and preparing is essential in order to have a successful outing. If I wake up early and rush around getting everything in order, everyone has fun, no one cries, and we all live to tell the world. Now if I’d wung this trip and didn’t prepare it wouldn’t have been such a success. Invest your time wisely and it will give you a good return! 

 

 

Lately I’ve been feeling like my blog is making a slow transition from Mental Health Advocacy to a Mommy blog. I was starring at the front page of my blog this morning, reading my sub-title: A Mental Health Journey. I started thinking about where this journey has taken me and how proud I am to have gone through what I have and had the good sense to document it. From my highest highs to my down right lows it’s all here. This is me and this is my life. 

Right now I’m in a place where I truly feel I was destined to be. Every morning I am so genuinely thrilled to jump out of bed and get my little buddy out of his crib and cover him with kisses. Sure, there’s moments when you’re in the motherhood trenches when it feels like you’ve given all you’ve got yet it’s still not enough. But then you hold them close and they heave a sigh of relief when they finally settle and they shut their eyes and slowly drift off to sleep with that sweet little baby grin that makes it all worth it. 

So in a way it’s more of a life-with-baby-plus-an-anxiety-disorder blog. It’s a category all of its own. Mommy-hood isn’t all Pinterest perfect moments. It’s crazy. It’s hectic. and if you’re not careful your health can easily take a back seat. 

Changes are on the horizon when it comes to Mr Blog. A new name and a fresh new face is just what the doctor ordered! 

 

Living “Off the Grid”…sorta

At four weeks postpartum I packed up my family into our four-door VW Jetta and hit the road for what’s turning out to be an unforgettable summer. 

It started as wishful thinking. Never did I think we’d actually be able to spend Oliver’s first few months living on our families private island in the middle of Lake Ontario. I was excited to have my due date at the start of summer so a) I wasn’t a massive sweaty blob and b) so we’d get to spend time at the cottage visiting the family. We knew we wanted to come at least for a few weeks… but a few weeks turned into 4 months and here we are! We’ll be on the island until Thanksgiving with a little trip to British Columbia to see my family sandwiched in between now and then. 

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This is my husband's family "cottage"

I’m constantly reminded that what I’ve taken on as a brand new mom is what some people would describe as their own kind of hell. And to be perfectly honest living on an island that is only accessed by boat (& that’s weather dependent) with a 4 week old crying infant would have been my brand of hell only a few short months ago, I must admit. It’s as if motherhood has turned me into a…well…MOM! I’m spending four months with my in-laws with no clean drinking water, spiders, and an outhouse. At two in the morning on any given day of the week you’ll find be rocking a baby to sleep in one hand and with another I’m killing spiders like it’s going out of style. 

What has kept me sane? Here’s what keeps me going on the daily:

1) Coffee.

2) Sharing baby duties with my husband. If I did the night feedings, I get to sleep in and vice versa. 

3) Hobbies/Alone time sans baby. Sometimes my hobbie of the day is sleeping. I’ve also taken up quilting to pass the time.

4) EXERCISE! Everyday I either go for a run, swim, do yoga, or stand up paddle board. 

5) That adorable little baby with his little cheeks and that giant smile he flashes me! 

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Surviving (trying to, at least) Parenthood

The moment that little boy came into our lives, life as we knew it was changed forever. I instantly knew I was exactly where I was suppose to be in life. It was an amazing feeling that I have been striving to find for a long time.

Of course there are moments when my sanity is being tested. I knew being a mom wasn’t going to be a cake walk. I’ve had to really pay attention to myself and my needs because those days I spend alone with baby while daddies at work I can easily forget to eat or even go to the bathroom(!).

For my healths sake, I need to take time for me. Becoming a mommy means I make sacrifices but my health can’t ever be one of them. On the days I know I will be alone I wake up an hour before my husband and shower, throw on a load of laundry, have my coffee, shower and do my hair. When I feel prepared and ready to take on the day, everything just goes smoother.

I know baby Oliver feeds off my moods or at the very least when he’s fussy and my patients is running thin, it just make things that much more difficult. Babies moods depends on my moods.

HAPPY MOMMY = HAPPY BABY

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Baby Oliver’s Arrival

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Pregnancy was 10 months (don’t be fooled, 40 weeks ain’t nine months!) of training all leading up to the big game called labour… and eventually the delivery of our sweet little cuddle puddle.

On the morning of June 5th I was watching the View and drinking my iced coffee like usual and I started noticing contractions that I hadn’t felt before. I’d been having Braxton Hicks for quite some time but this was…different! It was lower and hurt. I was tracking them and noticing they were getting closer together. Around 1:00 pm I called my husband at work and told him to get his butt home, we were heading to the hospital!!

I was smiling inside because I knew the moment we’d been working toward for so long was almost here — but on the outside I was panicking because I wasn’t sure I could get through this whole labour thing.

We got to the hospital after hitting every red light only to find out I was only 1 CM dilated. The nurse informed me I could have been walking around 1 CM for the last few weeks.

So we were sent home, much to my frustration. My mom made dinner because I knew if we planned an elaborate, yummy, supper, it would happen!

The minutes turned into hours and the pain became excruciating. By 11 pm I was begging to go to the hospital because I was desperate for some relief. We grabbed our bags and got to the hospital. In the 15 minute drive I had about 6 or 7 contractions.

To nurses came down to get me in a wheel chair and took me up to get checked out. By this point I was 8CM dilated and the nurses couldn’t believe I had made it that far at home. That was all thanks to my husband who learned everything from our couples labour and delivery yoga workshop we did!

We decided that because I had gone so far on my own we weren’t going to do an epidural or morphine and instead opted for laughing gas during contractions which just takes the edge off. It helped ALOT.

My doctor was called in (which is a great sign) and she broke the water. Unfortunately there was meconium in the waters which can be a sign of fetal distress so the NICU team was called in as a precaution and I was told he would be handed off to them to assess and make sure everything is A-OK.

At 1:07 on June 6th (HIS DUE DATE!!) he popped out! He was absolutely perfect weighing 7.4 lb and 19 3/4 inches. Little Oliver was in our arms at last and we were smitten. He’s fit into our lives seamlessly and we couldn’t imagine life any other way.