Category Archives: cloth diapers

Medical apologizers, people who don’t know it’s them, fluff butts.

Situations have been such lately that I have not been entirely comfortable putting as much of my personal business on the Internet as I might once have been, but you know what? Fuck it, and right the fuck up yours. You know what I mean?

*****

-I had a lumbar puncture yesterday, and it was basically my least favorite thing to happen to me in about my last hundred years of existence. I was numbed, so it wasn’t as excruciatingly painful as I had decided it would be, but it was certainly one of the most uncomfortable experiences of my life, which of course caused me to apologize through the whole thing, just like I did all the way through labor.

“Oh, I’m sorry my sheet is so damp. I think I might be a bit sweaty. I’m sorry about that.”

Except this time, it was more like,

“I’m sorry, I think I might throw up. Can I have a bucket, please? Thank you. Don’t worry, I’ll hold it until I can move. I’m sorry. Can I throw up yet? Sorry to bother you. Is it almost time to puke? Oh, ok. I can hold still, don’t worry. I’m sorry. Is it almost time? Uh oh. I might faint. Can you faint laying down? Am I talking really loud? Sorry. No, I’m sorry. I think I might throw up. I’m sorry. Ok. Ok. I’m sorry.”

I am a compulsive medical procedure apologizer. I can’t be the only one, of course, as I am one of the most average people on the entire planet, so I am interested in hearing from the rest of you and your theories on why we feel we are such an inconvenience to medical professionals who are just doing their jobs.

What’s weird is that I didn’t start my serious medical apologies until late in life. You know who I probably really owed an apology to? That nurse who did a throat culture back when I was 10 or so, the one whose hand I slapped right the hell out of my face. Reflex. I’m sorry.

No, but seriously, lumbar puncture. That sucked a fat fart. I’m sorry.

OH AND TO TOP IT OFF? I rewarded myself a s’mores pie, which I HAD SEEN on the McDonald’s drive thru menu all the times recently that I had rewarded myself a large diet soda for such feats as driving Phil to work and driving to pick Phil up from work and wandering around Target aimlessly, and when we got to the speaker, they said they didn’t HAVE ANY, even though it was on the menu, and I bellowed, “BUT I HAD A SPINAL TAP!” from the passenger seat into the speaker. They were not swayed. No pies were had that day.

LOOKIT HER HAIR.

Okay. Okay. I can’t take watching one more “Let’s all sit around and brainstorm about what outside force is making people not comment on our blogs anymore” discussion. Is it Twitter? Is it Facebooks? WHY IS OUR CHILDREN NOT COMMENTING?

Okay. Two things.

1. It’s you.
2. It’s you.

Allow me to explain.

Point 1:  It’s you. Are you commenting? I mean, seriously. Be honest with yourself. Are you commenting on blogs? Not just once in a while. I mean with the frequency you are expecting comments to show up on your own. I mean effort. Every day. You don’t have to. There’s no law. Lots of people don’t. Lots of people don’t, and still get comments on their blogs. That’s the way of things. But if you’re not seeing comments on yours and that bothers you and you’re not commenting on other blogs, then come on. Because, shut up. You’re not special.

Point 2: IT’S YOU. When I write a blog post that doesn’t get many comments, I don’t sit here and think, wow, everyone must have something else to do that is keeping them from my awesomeness today. I think, shit, must have written a stinker. Okay, and I also think that maybe you guys are kind of ignoring my brilliance a little, because the posts that you think are stinkers, I think are hilarious but in my old age I have come to realize that no one really finds me as hilarious as I find myself AND THAT IS FINE.

And if posts and posts and posts go by with hardly any comments, then I assume I am writing lots of stinkers and also that I am not engaging with the people to let them know I am still out there. I don’t sit here and wonder what jerkwad piece of asshole technology is STEALING MY FAN CLUB. I assume that I am WRITING CRAP and IGNORING PEOPLE who are trying to connect with me.

It’s not Twitter. It’s not Facebook. It’s not… anything.

Other people are still getting comments. I mean, lots of other people. And lots of comments.

When people don’t comment, it’s because YOU HAVEN’T WRITTEN ANYTHING PEOPLE WANT TO TALK TO YOU ABOUT.

People don’t just SHOW UP because you keyboard-slapped out some words that interested YOU and leaned back in your chair to wait. If that’s what you want to do, more power to you, go ahead, but don’t sit around and look for something else to blame when no one shows up to listen raptly at your feet, damn.

*****

 Pen’s surgery is coming up fast, and I’m preparing by losing weight to provide a nice cushion for all of the chocolate cake I intend to consume while we’re waiting. I’ve read a lot about the surgery – well, as much as I could find, anyway – and no two accountings of it have been the same except for ONE THING. Every single recap of the surgery I have read has said that it was supposed to be a 90 minute surgery, but ended up taking 3 hours, or 4 or even up to 5. Every single one. I’m glad I read that in advance. Now I know to wear some stretchy pants. More room for extra anxiety cake. I know from our last stay in Phoenix Children’s Hospital that they have four varieties of chocolate cake alone.

*****

Remember when I used to talk about cloth diapers a lot? Well, HERE’S A BLAST FROM THE PAST.

I use fitted diapers almost exclusively now, with the occasional all-in-two. I have several pocket diapers still hanging around, and Phil uses them from time to time, but I plan to sort through what I have and pull those out to be sold. I might keep one or two for outings, we’ll see.

In the house, Pen wears a fitted diaper and Babylegs. No pants. Since fitted diapers aren’t waterproof, this is the easiest way. I just change her every two to two and a half hours or when she’s stinky or damp. The picture above is of all my favorite fitted diapers soaking in Rockin’ Green Funk Rock ammonia bouncer. Stinkies happen, you guys.

Here’s some stuff I know:

  • There’s really no such thing as a super trim, super absorbent diaper. More absorbent means more bulk. Your baby is going to have a big butt.
  • Also, you have to change often. That shouldn’t be a big deal. It may seem like to to those used to disposables, but when you think about it like this – how long should your baby have to wait after she has peed herself for fresh pants – it really shouldn’t be a big deal.
  • Anti-pill fleece is cheap and you can cut your own liners for babies with sensitive parts. It keeps them cozy and dry-feeling.
  • Fitteds rule.
  • Rinsing takes an extra minute but saves a lot of hassle at wash time.
  • Good diapers are expensive but used diapers aren’t gross.
  • And nothing has to be all or nothing – Pen wears disposables to bed and often out of the house.

I have a favorite diaper.

Even my text looks tired and apathetic.

I started a new medication recently, and when I am not sleeping, I am mostly thinking about sleeping. And if I am not sleeping or thinking about sleeping, I am clinging to the arms of my chair or to the wall or one time, to the floor, because dizzy spells are almost knocking me down on the regular. I care about very little other than sleep and trying to keep my eyeballs steady.

Other than that, I feel pretty good.

*****

Penny is in a phase. This video was taken in the dark, so you will likely not see much, but you will quickly notice that the picture isn’t the point of this video anyway.

She also has been putting in a lot of serious time at The Office, as well.

That was also a video. If you are reading this and you see no videos, I’m not lying to you. You need to click through, or you need to just not see the videos.

Another phase that I have NOT videoed is the dreaded Four Month Wakeful.

It’s a thing, and it’s terrible.

*****

We just bought our plane tickets to Pennsylvania for Christmas. When do we have to tell the airline people that we will have a lap baby?

I’m already overwhelmed about this trip. Those seats and rows are already so small, and now I will have to share my space with a baby as well. And I’ll have to carry a diaper bag with SO MANY DIAPERS. And bottles. And formula. And what if they try to put her through the scanner or what if they want to give the baby a pat down? I can’t let someone pat down my baby. Christmas would be totally ruined.

Taking cloth diapers on an extended trip that includes a cross country flight is going to be pretty interesting. Or gross. Probably gross. But I’m doing it. I know that you want to helpfully suggest that maybe we could use disposable at least while we are flying, but I’m really not interested in doing that. We might use disposable liners, though, to keep the amount of poop hauled to a minimum.

*****

I thought about doing the accent vlog because a lot of people who are going to The Blathering have done it as a way to kind of get to know each other beforehand, but as you can see above, Penny is having a PHASE and Sheldon also talks (I don’t know if you knew that) and it’s just too loud in here.

Would have been boring, anyway, as I am an accentless individual.

*****

I feel like I should tell you that once I have an adequate supply of cloth diapers that I am pleased with, I have no intention of stopping my purchasing of cloth diapers. I like them, and I will continue to buy them, and I don’t think it’s outside the realm of possibility that I would have 100 or more by the time Penny potty trains (although, apparently, we say “potty LEARN” these days, which I don’t get so much).

Does the number of diapers I have matter to you at all? No. But I want to make sure that you know, if you’re considering cloth, that the way I choose to do it – with too many diapers of all different sorts – should not be considered at ALL an example of what you need to do to cloth diaper.

Cloth diapering can be – and really, IS – much more simple than I make it out to be with my collection of diapers and different diapers for different situations and fitteds and all in twos and separate wash routines for different kinds of diapers. The entry to cloth diapers is MUCH MORE SIMPLE than my example would lead you to believe. So you shouldn’t be intimidated away from cloth because of how I do things. You can email me any time with questions about much easier ways to do things.

*****

Here are some things about television that I hate:

1. When talk show hosts talk over their guests or make them look like idiots for the sake of making a joke. I mean, I get your job is to make jokes and be entertaining, but these are your GUESTS. You should be POLITE. If Gordon Ramsey is trying to teach you how to cook something, just COOK IT.

2. The way that people in movies and on television take forever to answer the phone. If you’re going to answer, answer. I totally would have hung up by then.

3. They also take forever to answer the door! How long is some schmuck supposed to stand out there?

4. AND THEY NEVER SAY GOODBYE WHEN THEY HANG UP THE PHONE.

5. And sometimes two characters are having a conversation, and the scene changes to somewhere else, and they’re at the same point in the conversation. What, did you walk to this new location in silence?

6. I know it’s just PART of how things are, but apartments are unrealistically large for their location and the salary of the characters.

*****

What shows should I be watching this fall? I’m all discombobulated on television. This is my first fall television season with a baby, and I don’t find myself sitting down to watch too often, except for How I Met Your Mother and The Big Bang Theory, because Phil and I watch those together.

I like to spend my evening hours in bed these days (I think I was tucked in before 7 last night), but I do have access to multiple DVRs and Hulu, and I am ready to give your recommendations a chance, unless they’re crappy.

I bet I come out of this entry looking like a huge jerk with no taste.

So, if you follow me on Twitter, you are very aware (well, assuming that you follow me and give a crap, which is not necessarily the case) that my mother had been visiting up until last night.

I mostly just rolled my eyes and gritted my teeth and let her hold the baby as much as she wanted to, but there was this one point where I just snapped and I don’t think my head went back on straight for the rest of the visit.

We were getting ready to leave to go to a baseball game, and I had been walking around packing Penny’s bag and gathering everything we needed for the evening. Phil said to me, “Do you have the tickets?”

And, since I did indeed have the tickets, I said, “Yes, I have the tickets.”

And my mom jumps in and says, “Where are they?”

Is it not enough that I said that I had them? She needs to know the exact location of where I had them?

OKAY THAT DOESN’T SOUND LIKE MUCH BUT YOU GUYS. IT WAS A LONG VISIT.

I was annoyed. I was very annoyed. I was annoyed with everything I did being double checked, with being reminded of appropriate care of Penny, with the raised eyebrow and repeated requests to do things the way she thought they should be done even when I refused.

We were at IKEA at one point, looking at some shelves, and she read the warning next to the shelf – something about using the proper mounting screws for the wall type. When we got home and showed everything to Phil, she reminded him that the SIGN SAID to use the proper screws for the wall type. And again the next day. And then again when we were talking about the fact that we would eventually hang the purchased shelves. “Just remember, the SIGN SAID –.”

As if we need her to continually remind us of the sign’s instructions to hang the shelves properly. AS IF WE EVEN NEED A SIGN to instruct us to not hang shelves in OUR BABY’S ROOM in such a manner that they might FALL ON HER HEAD.

After the ticket thing, I said to my mom, “Do you realize how many things like that you’ve said this week?”

And she replied, “I realize that you’re hypersensitive.”

Excuse me?

Nothing makes me angrier (that’s just a saying, a lot of things make me equally angry or possibly angrier) than being put in a position where I have to JUSTIFY feeling a certain way. Putting someone in a position where they have to defend the fact that they have FEELINGS is not right. You shouldn’t do that.

Ugh. I’m too annoyed to even say a complete 500 words about it all.

*****

You guys, the visit totally wasn’t all bad, or even mostly bad. Yes, I was irritated a lot. Yes, I snapped at her, repeatedly. But we did a lot of fun things and got a lot of work done on Pennysylvania as well.

Remember when I asked you about my repurchasey obligations when returning wedding gifts? Well, we took the pots back to Macy’s, and I figured I’d get a few bucks and maybe we’d find, I don’t know, a throw pillow or something for Pennysylvania.

Except, when they rang the pots back through, they gave me a much fatter gift card of store credit than I was expecting. Like, “Here, have the MSRP of the pots that no one actually ever charges, plus an extra 10% because why not, and on top of that, here’s a little ‘Sorry we sold you exploding pots’ consolation money. Go nuts!”

We looked through the baby section and weren’t especially into anything we saw, probably because Macy’s sells Carter’s and we’d already completely demolished not only Carter’s, but the Kohl’s Carter’s section as well the day before.

We did, however, go back to the furniture section and locate the perfect mattress for Penny’s floor bed. My mom was insistent on buying it, telling me that maybe I should look for it at another place for a better price, or that maybe another store would charge less for delivery. That turned out to not be the case, but regardless, I had a gift card and there wasn’t much else I really had a need for at Macy’s, so I felt like it made the most sense for me to buy it. Not that I don’t appreciate my mom’s offer to buy things for Penny – I totally do. I just don’t see a reason for either of us to spend money that doesn’t need to be spent, and a gift card is basically pretend money.

With delivery charge, I ended up paying $32 out of pocket for Penny’s floor bed mattress. I think that once it’s installed in her room, I’m going to call it Martha Stewart Exploding Pot Memorial Island.

We went to IKEA the next day and it wasn’t until I was hauling our self-serve furniture off of the shelves and arguing with my mom about who was paying that she said that she was paying because she wanted to buy the mattress. She followed that with, “I wanted to buy the crib. Your grandmother bought your crib.”

So, basically, I accidentally flaunted a tradition she had wanted to continue or establish, first by not having a crib and then by paying for the mattress myself.

I feel kind of bad about that, I really do. I understand what she wanted to do now, but I don’t know that if I had known that to begin with, I would have done anything any differently. The floor bed is right for us, and the pots-I-don’t-use in exchange for a mattress scheme really saved a lot of money. My money, her money – whatever, money saved.

I’d like to think it turned out okay in the end, though, because she did buy out almost the entirety of IKEA and even though she was paying, she stuck very closely to my vision (over the top) and tastes (poor) for the room. She did draw the line at the carpet with the broccoli on it, but nothing is really stopping me from going back to get it.

Here’s a small taste of what is being installed into Pennysylvania over the next week or so:

Additionally, we got several different sets of shelves. There are some picture rails that we’re putting at low-ish points around the walls, to display board books within Penny’s (eventual) reach. Also, three plain square LACK shelves that will be hung high above the changing table, in view of the bed. I’m planning on putting some large photos of the dogs and Phil and I on those.

We grabbed another kind of shelf unit thingie that has six cubes of space in it (MY DESCRIPTIVE POWERS ARE VAST!), and that will either be hung low or placed on the floor and anchored to the wall. Small, safe toys and other items will be placed in the cube to help keep her room organized and give her a sense of everything having its own place. We’ll rotate a few toys in and out of those areas.

OH, and another thing – a clothes hanger in the shape of an octopus, like to hang a bunch of clothes to dry instead of a clothes line. I’m going to hang that from fishing line above her bed and use it to make a mobile. I’m not especially crafty, so it will probably consist of six pictures of Phil doing thumbs, a spoon, and some marker pictures drawn on toilet paper squares. I don’t know. I’m a big picture person, not a details lady. Let me know if you have any ideas about what to hang.

We also hit Target and got some deep purple sheets for her bed, as well as a sort of floor-rocker. One of those kid’s video game chairs, kind of? It’s like a rocking chair with no arms or legs. For now, we’ll keep it next to her floor bed for us to sit on to read to her or, more likely, read Twitter on our phones while occasionally insisting she fall asleep RIGHT THIS INSTANT. My mom snagged an owl-shaped pillow, and I grabbed another carpet – a rag rug that I’d been looking at every time we went to Target. I don’t have any place in mind to put it yet, but it was on clearance for $7.50. So. It was almost silly not to buy it.

I tried to put it on the floor in the living room, but Sheldon laid on it for a while and then tried to carry it away.

So. Construction of Pennysylvania is underway. Let me know if you have any fun ideas in obnoxious colors.

*****

Hey, remember when I said we went to a baseball game?

LOOKIT MY BIG FAT BABY, YOU GUYS.

Oh, the baseball game. Penny won the “My Parents are HUGE IDIOTS” Award for that one.

How did I forget how LOUD a professional sporting event is? You guys, she screamed and cried in terror every time the crowd roared, or they played walk up music, or ANYTHING HAPPENED AT ALL. We were looking for the exits by the second inning. And then? She fell asleep. She fell asleep and slept through a good inning or so of the game, and when she woke up, she was normal. Completely unbothered. As if the whole start of the game had never happened. A total 180. That didn’t stop us from leaving at the top of the seventh, though (the Diamondbacks had clinched all that needed clinching the night before, so it wasn’t especially suspenseful). Good thing we left when we did, as there was a power outage just minutes after we got there, followed by the Diamondbacks laying down a 15-1 asswhupping on the Giants, which would be totally awesome if I gave half a crap about either team at all.

*****

Anyway. Good visit. Good progress made on Penny actually having a space in our house, instead of just laying wherever we find room to put her down, with her belongings scattered willy nilly about the place. Good baseball game (courtesy of Operation Homefront AZ and Sanderson Ford Seats for Soldiers). Good… diet soda I just finished drinking. Good thing I’m going to the doctor this afternoon to attempt to start the process of addressing incredibly difficult post-partum anxiety. Good… uh… hey, I got into Pottermore! That’s pretty good.

*****

OH, I remembered what I wanted to ask you! Can you recommend some prints to go in Pennysylvania? I mean, it might be tough for you to match my discerning and elevated sense of style and decor preferences, but I have faith in you, Internet. I am looking for some awesomeness for the upper walls. Have you seen anything? Ideas for things to hang from the octopus tentacles to make an acceptable baby-stimulating mobile are also welcomed.

*****

PS. Penny has a tooth. A tooth-let. A harbinger of tooth.

PPS. I know you don’t think I went all week without some new diapers coming in to this house. Also, this one is on the way. Fun diaper stuff coming soon, if you’re into that kind of thing! Lame-ass diaper stuff coming soon, if you’re not into that kind of thing!

PPPS. OH ONE MORE THING ABOUT MY MOM. I would make baby observations, like “She isn’t rolling yet,” or maybe we’d see a baby walking around and I’d say, “I can’t wait until Penny can walk,” and my mom would jump in to DEFEND PENNY, going, “She will!” As if I’m maligning my dud of a baby. I KNOW SHE WILL. She’s not going to go to college unable to do anything but put her face into the carpet and shriek out her indignation. I’m just SAYING.

Giveaways! For CANADIANS! And one for non-Canadians! And in-law stories for those not interested!

That’s right. A Canadians-only giveaway. It’s like spotting a pink elephant or a rude Canadian. EXTREMELY RARE.

Today, Internet, I am basically trying to distract you from the fact that I haven’t finished the Cosmo post even though I totally said I would. Doesn’t it suck that the things I say aren’t a binding contract at all, and I can lie to you up one day and down the next about what I plan on writing, and then when I don’t write it, there’s nothing you can do except click the red X in an indignant manner, which I DON’T EVEN KNOW ABOUT WHEN YOU DO, so your frustration just goes on unabated?

But I think it’s OKAY, because I am going to distract you with ITEMS! For you to have!

Recently, I bought a mystery package, kind of like the ones Delight.com used to do, where you pay a certain amount and are sent a bag of products worth at least that amount. And I got a ton of awesome stuff, that I am really happy with and will be telling you all about soon.

But I also got some things that I cannot use, and rather have them sit around, I’ve decided to just give them to you.

So we’re clear – I got these items in a package I paid for. These are my thingies. I wasn’t given them by the companies themselves. The companies gave them to ANOTHER company, who bundled many things together, and I bought that bundle. These things belong to me, and I am giving them to you, and I am not a middle person. This is the same as if I gave you, like… Sheldon. Mine to give away. Would you like Sheldon?

The first two giveaways are open to Canadians only. Well, you don’t necessarily have to be a Canadian, but it would make more sense if you were. They are two $10 gift certificates to Canadian companies, and the shipping to the US is quite prohibitive. So. I’d prefer non-Canadians not enter, because I just don’t feel it’s especially likely for a non-Canadian to actually use them, and they can just as easily sit around unused in my house, you know?

Gift Certificate 1!

Gift Certificate 1 is a $10 gift certificate to Spoiled Sugar. This store has tons of adorable stuff for babies and moms, and most of it is made at home by moms. A bonus, if you ask me. They have cute onesies and butt ruffle bloomers, but when I looked through the site, I was really into the wipes cases. Phil told me that a wipes case is not an appropriate thing to ask for as a gift for my 30th birthday or out first wedding anniversary, so I take that to mean he’s going to just buy me one to have. So, I pass this gift certificate on to one of you. One of you Canadians. You don’t have to buy a wipes case with it, though.

Gift Certificate 2!

I was really tempted to use this one for myself despite the shipping, but it just doesn’t make sense for me. Gift certificate 2 is $10 off at Pink Dot Design, where they make custom photo cards, invitations, announcements and some other cute stuff. I thought about getting a custom print for Penny’s bedroom door that said “Pennysylvania,” because I made that joke in a post the other day and haven’t stopped complimenting myself on my own brilliance. But then a lizard was spotted in the room and I want to move.

I also thought about ordering Penny’s 1st birthday party invitations, but this gift certificate expires March 1, 2012 and I know me well enough to know that there’s no way in hell I’ll have the details ironed out by then.

So! Are you Canadian and having a baby that you need to announce? Or are you Canadian and planning a party? Or are you Canadian with an upcoming wedding for which you would like to encourage others to save the date? If you are any of these, or any other of a large NUMBER of combinations of Canadian plus in need of some sort of photo card, this is the giveaway for you!

Update:  So… I just looked at both of those sites and it looks like they’ve both either recently changed their shipping to the US prices or I’ve had a recent small shipping-price-specific stroke. So, I guess shipping prices are the same to both countries now? But I assume the prices are in Canadian money? GOD I HAVE NO IDEA. This is why I never accept giveaway offers from other companies. Let me just mess it up with my own shit. Let’s just leave these at Canadians only and let them sort it out, okay?

Giveaway 3! 

Giveaway 3 is from a Canadian company, but available for non-Canadians! Via me!

One White HipKiddo One Size Pocket Diaper

picture via HipKiddo

This is a brand new pocket diaper, unsullied by butts. It’s a one size diaper, which means it should fit most babies from about 8-10 lbs til potty training. Most babies. The 3×3 rise snaps let you adjust how “tall” the diaper is, and this particular diaper as cross over snaps at the waist that allow you to get a snug fit on skinny babies – something the major diaper companies haven’t picked up on yet and as Amalah mentioned the other day – THEY SO SHOULD.

This is what I’d call… an entry level pocket. It’s a well-constructed, perfectly functional diaper, similar to Kawaii, Alvababy and Sunbaby pockets. It’s not fancy and it comes with one microfiber insert to stuff in the pocket. You know, a lot of people build their whole diaper stashes out of these inexpensive pockets and they get a lot of love from a lot of experienced cloth diapering moms. I own a couple of similar pockets and I really like them quite a bit.

I don’t even know why I’m calling it “entry level.” It’s not. It’s a pocket diaper, and it’s perfectly usable and well-loved by MANY people. It’s just not one of the “big brands” and doesn’t have a “big brand” price tag. Most of the diapers I use these days are not “big brands” either. This is a great diaper. Ignore that “entry level” part. This is a standard pocket and you will like it.

While anyone and everyone is free to enter to win this diaper, can I suggest that if you’re already cloth diapering, that you let this one pass by? This is a good opportunity for someone who is pregnant and considering cloth diapers to get their hands on one and check it out, to see what it’s all about. Or for someone new to cloth diapers who is just starting to build their stash. OR, maybe you cloth diaper and you KNOW someone who is pregnant and considering it. It would be a cute baby shower gift, I think. Having diapers in hand before Penny was born made me more comfortable with the whole thing – time to really get a feel for it all, you know?

Whatever! If you win it, YOU can wear it for all I care. I was just suggesting that maybe you don’t enter this one if you don’t really have a need for it. But maybe you need a rain hat. Whatev. No judging.

*****

So. Those are the three giveaways. Canadian, Canadian, people who have, are about to have, or know someone who is going to have a baby.

I don’t know a whole lot of Canadians, so if you are a Canadian, maybe you can get on Canada-net and let other Canadians know that I have prizes. For Canadians.

If you’d like to enter any of the giveaways, check out the sites and just declare your Canadian or non-Canadian status and list the giveaways you’d like to enter. Just one comment, please. You don’t need to tweet or Facebook or do a goddamned Entry-Dance to earn more entries. I mean, you’re welcome to tweet about the contest to lure in some more Canadians or whatever, but not required.

You get one per giveaway, you can only win one of the giveaways, it will be a random draw on let’s say… Friday, and there’s just going to be no shenanigans about entering. Comment with what you want, done.

You’re WELCOME.

(You’re welcome for the ease-of-entry thing. You’re also welcome for the prizes, but I figured that was understood, and I also figure that not having to bend over backwards and pick up a cherry stem off the ground with your teeth to enter might actually be more appreciated than the prizes themselves.)

*****

Okay, everyone else? Here is some stuff for you – two in law stories that I have been HOARDING to myself. You guys, I made Phil sit and listen while I read these entire threads out loud, adding my own commentary along the way. They’re so perfect. They’re so layered. There’s so much delusion, entitlement, and ridiculous behavior that I almost FAINTED FROM GLEE while reading them. I am SO EXCITED for you guys to read these stories.

Story 1: Unreasonable SIL!

This one is a bit unusual, because it’s written by a young woman, in defense of her own mother, against her sister-in-law. If that makes sense. Basically, this woman is railing on about her brother’s wife’s treatment of her own mother.

She wants to know how to force her sister-in-law to respect her mother by taking her advice. She wants to know if there is anything they can do at all, or if they have to keep LETTING HER SIL HAVE HER WAY ALL THE TIME when it comes to raising her children. She is APPALLED that her SIL refuses to bend to her mother’s advice, and can’t BELIEVE she’s been cut off from the family after ALL SHE DID was bitch out her SIL in her own house.

The best part of this is that the poster states her age to be 22, and you can just see “I’M 22!!!” SCREAMING out of every word she says. Honestly, this post and her subsequent responses to the comments made by other posters hits so many of the audacious high notes that I 85% believe it’s completely fake. I love it. I love everything about this post.

Story 2: What do you think?

This is a post by a mother-in-law, looking for some sympathy or advice after a visit with her son, daughter-in-law and grandchildren went so wrong that she “found herself” going home a day early.

It seems pretty standard at first – the MIL maybe a little misguided about her place, and the DIL maybe a little over-sensitive. But as you read the comments left by others, it gets really good. Especially several posts by a woman named Ginnie, who deconstructs the entire first post, pointing out the MIL’s errors and boundary-crossing.

It really gets good, however, when Ginnie asks to know just how the MIL came to “find herself” on a plane going home early. The original poster gives that last bit of detail on page six.

Y’all, I died. I DIED.

The rest of the post winds down nicely, with the MIL seeming to accept the advice that is being given. That would normally be kind of an anticlimactic let down, but she continues to insist she is owed an apology and that maybe some of the responders would be more sympathetic to her plight if they were ALSO mothers-in-law. Which most of them were.

Spectacular. Just spectacular.

*****

So. Internet. Enter some contests. Bring over all your Canadians. Knock yourselves out. I’d appreciate if you shared the contest on your social network of choice, but no big if you don’t feel like it. You can still win a prize.

And for those of you not interested in any of these contests, you guys – THOSE STORIES, YOU GUYS. Let’s talk about those. LET’S TALK ABOUT THOSE!

It’s not as obscene as you assumed, Internet. You probably owe me an apology.

Not as bad as you thought, RIGHT?

Pretty reasonable, RIGHT?

There’s one in the wash (it has polka dots) and one on Penny’s butt (orange!), but that’s all.

Well, there’s a few others, but I just SOLD them, so they’re not pictured, because I need to mail them. Just 5 pockets and a fitted.

And I do have a couple of stacks of prefolds, but we don’t really use them anymore, so they’re not pictured. You can just imagine those.

Oh, and also the covers. They’re at the other end of the drawer. No big, there’s like 3. Plus 4 I’m selling, but they’re newborn size. Don’t count.

The extra stuffings and liners and doublers are also down at the other end of the drawer, but accessories don’t count as actual diapers.

And I did get one in the mail today, but it was part of a mystery package with some other cool stuff, so I could hardly be expected to count that one yet.

I also kind of have four on the way, but did you see above? I JUST SOLD SIX.

YOU’RE the one who is unreasonable.

Things places say, valid diaperings, babies for babies, Phil fell for it twice

Let’s just get this out of the way now.

1. Are you a person who says, “I’d like to come with you,” or “I want to come with?”

2. Are you a person who says, “That needs to be washed,” or “That needs washed?”

3. Are you a person who says, “Take 101 to whatever,” or “Take the 101 to whatever?”

I’m willing to entertain your responses and reasonings on 1 and 2, but if you’re not in my camp, I will forever view you through “says weird things” colored lenses.

Now, number 3, I am finally willing to admit is a kind of regional thing, though I refuse to ever quit taunting Phil about it. When we first met, I was all, “What the shit is this ‘the 10’ crap? Do me a favor. When we’re in Pennsylvania, tell my sister to ‘take the 81’ and see what she says to you,” because let me tell you, Internet, my sister is someone who is INCREDIBLY PICKY about the way that you say things. Yes, you. Well, mostly me. I can’t say the word “soda” or “phone” without her attempting to get me to repeat it for her correctly.

Anyway, Phil did say something to my sister about “the 81,” and predictably, she said, “What the hell is THAT about? It’s 81. Just 81.” Which is TRUE.

But I guess out here in the Westerny part of the country, it’s common to add “the” in front of highway numbers. In Pennsylvania and Maryland, where I have gathered all of my extensive data, there is no “the.” It’s simply, “Take 81 to 83” or, “I take 270 to work” or, more commonly, “Hi, please forward my mail, because I’m going to be on 495 for the rest of my ever-loving life.”

Other ones? I mean, do you have any? I’m not really interested in pronunciation differences – I get that some people say “water” and some people say “wooder,” and that whole pronunciation video meme thing went around for a while and I didn’t watch a single one because who caaaaaaares. Some people say “ant” and some people say “auuuunt.” Got it. Also not interested in regional expressions. You know, like how Southern ladies say, “Oh, bless your heart,” when they really mean, “If I wasn’t such a lady, I would FUCK YOU UP.” I am more interested in regional differences in the way things are said, like the above examples. Please come up with some further instances of what I have illustrated above, so that we can all marvel at how weird other people are.

*****

I still intend to write my cloth diaper post, or maybe posts, I’m not sure, but I did want to get one thing out of the way.

It’s probably clear by now that I have about 7 jillion different kinds of diapers, and I think that some people probably find that a little intimidating. And it can be, I guess, but you should know that I eased into it.

Another perfectly valid approach to cloth diapering is to create an entire stash of diapers from just one brand. A lot of people do this, and it’s a very simple, uncomplicated way to do things, and you can also usually get really good deals on packages of diapers.

In fact, that was my original intention. I shopped sales and swaps before Penny was born and collected a couple of a few different kinds of diapers, intending to try them out and decide what worked best for us, sell the rest, and buy an entire collection of just one kind of diaper, like tons of people do. I did not do that.

But if you want to, you will probably end up going with one of the bigger “names” in diapers, because they are the easiest to obtain. If you’re interested in a hybrid system (one that will let you use cloth or disposable inserts as needed), you might like Flip, GroVia or GDiapers. (I do not use hybrids, so I cannot help you, but you’d still be making a nice choice.)

If you’re interested in pockets, you have probably mostly heard about BumGenius and FuzziBunz. Both excellent brands. If you were going to ask me, I’d say to go with FuzziBunz, because I like them better than I like BumGenius. But a lot of people like BumGenius, too.

Actually, if you were going to ask me, I’d say to go with Blueberry diapers for your pockets, because I don’t mind spending ridiculous amounts of your money right out of your pocket. (I am phasing out all of my pockets except for my Blueberry and newer FuzziBunz. But pockets are still an excellent choice!) But if you’re choosing between FuzziBunz and BumGenius, I’d say FuzziBunz. Unless you want to go with BumGenius.

You know. Whatever.

What I’m saying, in a completely unhelpful way, is that while the way I talk about cloth diapers and my personal collection of various types of pockets, AI2s and fitteds may be a little more complex that you (or Phil) are totally comfortable with, that shouldn’t discourage you away from cloth diapers, because JUST PICKING ONE is a perfectly valid (and probably sane) way to do things.

FuzziBuuuuuuuuuuuuuunnnnz!

*****

Left a little note for Phil to find before he left for work in the morning. <3

*****

Yesterday, we got into the discussion about whether you should ever consider having a second child for the reasoning that eventually you will be dead, and who will your kid hang out with? And also, after watching Vlogbrothers for so long, if you are robbing your kid of a special relationship in their adulthood if you don’t have a sibling for them, even if they hate each other growing up, and even if having a second kid (in your specific case) will make it so that you cannot raise either kid in exactly the manner you want, which you would be able to do with just one kid.

I don’t even want to talk about that shit, Internet.

*****

I know people do these all the time, but what are you reading that I’m not reading that I should be reading? I mean, I’m sure you read some really good blogs about exercise and healthy living, but I just celebrated There’s Chocolate Cake in the Fridge Day by having chocolate cake for breakfast. So. Realistically. Who are you reading that I should seek out and pester until they become my very best friend forever, or at least until they give in and agree to be my secret best friend, like Duck Face Walter was Stephanie Tanner’s secret boyfriend.

Who do you know who needs a Duck Face Walter in their life in the form of me?

*****

Internet, here are some choices we’re batting around right now:

1. Base of preference, standard list: We have a list of bases where we would like to live, on the East Coast, within reasonable driving distance of where all of my family is concentrated. We can put in a list (again) to let the powers that be know that we would like to move to one of these bases if space is available, and wait and see (and likely be denied, again).

2. Bade of preference, new list: If we can’t get one of the bases that’s within driving distance of family/people we know, it doesn’t really make a difference where we go, because we’d just be in the same situation we’re in now, so what does it matter where? This is known as the “anywhere but Arizona” idea.

3. Put in for overseas assignments as they become available, to places where Penny and I could accompany Phil. We’d be overseas for a few years, then have a better chance of getting a base of our choosing when we came back. However, not too many things we’re interested are opening up over the last few cycles, and they’re not even remotely guaranteed anyway, so we’d be sitting and waiting in AZ in the meantime.

4. A special job in either Montana, Wyoming or North Dakota for a few years. That would get us out of AZ, and also give Phil a little break from his career field, which is kind of needed right now. However, we’d be just as far from family as before, and it would be starting over, in a way, as Phil would have to learn a whole new job. His schedule, if manning was good in the position, would be 3 days on, 4 days off. Now, those 3 days would be three entire days, as in, at a different location, not home at night, Skype in for bedtime. But then, you know, 4 days off. Unless manning isn’t good. Which it isn’t always. Then just two days off at a time. A slight edge to this job is that there would be no deploying for four years, which is nice, but not a reason to choose it, as Phil and I are both of the belief that when you join the military, you do your share as called upon to do it. So. That would be nice, but we’d never choose something specifically to avoid Phil being sent overseas, if that makes sense.

5. An unaccompanied short tour for Phil. He put it for one recently and it doesn’t look like he got it. A common option for this is Korea, and Phil has already done a year in Korea, and is not super keen on the idea of doing another one. He’d go alone, and Penny and I would either go to Pennsylvania near my family for the year, or we would go to our follow on base if it was one of our top choices, again within driving distance of family. This is not really at the top of our list, because who wants to be away for a year? But it gives you an edge in getting a base you’d want after that year. But an edge doesn’t mean a guarantee. You could ask for New Jersey, Delaware or Virginia and they could offer you North Dakota, North Dakota, or North Dakota.

6. Do one more BOP round with our top bases. If we don’t get them, settle down and accept Phoenix living. The weather is great most of the year. There’s tons of stuff to do. Lots of concerts, all major sporting events, state fairs, good food. We’d look into moving off base in early 2012 into a Big Kid House, because base housing, while it met our needs when we really needed them met, is hard for me to see as a permanent home. Move into a nice house in the West Valley somewhere, with a block wall fence so Sheldon will stop getting away.

7. Listen, you. I already know your vote. MacDill. I got it. I tell Phil every time we discuss it. “Don’t forget to count the vote for MacDill.

Reality: Oh, you guys. They’re never going to let us out of Arizona.

I don’t know why I laid all of that out. Do any of you have sway with the base assignments of the USAF? If so, WHY HAVEN’T YOU TOLD ME BEFORE? If not, well. We’ll be right here. In Arizona.

New crouton, floor beds, potential hippiery, and gift obligational awkwardness.

1. I am extremely slow with changing the link over in my sidebar blog roll – well, it’s only one link, so it’s more of a blog crouton than a blog roll – so I figured that the people who don’t read this site through a feed reader have probably stopped checking. But I just changed it! Which doesn’t mean you should stop visiting Not Bagels. It means I got off my lazy butt. Well, no. I stayed on my lazy butt while I changed the link.

2. There are still spots open for The Blathering! (This is my roommate. We’re both sadly excited to spend depressing awesome nights away from our babies. We’re looking forward to sleeping. It’s going to rule. In a bummer kind of way.) Why don’t you come to The Blathering? If you don’t want to go because you don’t do bars and karaoke and nightlife and cocktail dresses, that’s not a good reason. I’m shooting down your reason. I don’t do those things. I’ll bring Settlers of Catan for us. Looks like I’ve poked some holes in your defense. See you there.

Unless you do like to go out for drinks and dancing and ride mechanical bulls. Then guess what? That stuff will be happening, too. Looks like you’re SOL on reasons for not going to The Blathering.

3. People ask me a lot where I find all of my in law stories to read and be outraged about, and I will tell you my trick. Find a really active set of forums somewhere – any kind, but ideally some that cater to ladies, for the most part. Wedding forums, or pregnancy forums, or really, anything. Then just do a search on one of the included message boards for “MIL.”

Baby name forum?
“MY MOTHER IN LAW WANTS TO NAME MY BABY.”

Wedding forum?
“MY MOTHER IN LAW CANCELLED MY CATERER AND REPLACED IT WITH LONG SANDWICHES.”

Pregnancy forum?
“MY MOTHER IN LAW BURST INTO THE DELIVERY ROOM AND CHECKED TO SEE IF I WAS DILATED.”

Anything. Anything at all. Any kind of topic. Whatever you can think of, there’s a forum for it. And if there’s a forum for it, there’s someone talking about how their in laws RUINED IT.

A current favorite, though? Grandparents.com. It’s got parents-in-law AND children-in-law on the SAME MESSAGE BOARDS. It’s GLORIOUS.

4. Here’s my baby:

She’ll be moving in to her own room sometime in the next few… a while. My mom is coming to visit and we’re going to work on putting together her room, both because I need something to do other than pretend to be totally into it when my mom wants to stand around and gush about Penny (not a gusher, myself) and also because Phil is not especially interested in baby bedroom creation.

We’re doing a floor bed. I think we have pretty good reasons for choosing the do a floor bed, the main one being that we won’t have to buy a crib. Second main, I guess, is all the benefits of and reasoning behind doing a floor bed make logical sense to us.  I haven’t yet decided if we’ll do a crib mattress or toddler bed mattress for the floor bed, or just go ahead with an adult twin. If you’ve done a floor bed, what did you go with? Any tips? I’m kind of nervous about where to put it in the room. I don’t want her to roll between it and the wall, but will she be heavy enough to really wedge it away from the wall with her body? I’ve never seen a picture of a room with a floor bed in any place but a corner, so I assume it works out.

Any first hand floor bed experience is greatly appreciated.

5. With all the cloth diapering and the floor bedding and the intent to skip rice cereal and purees and instead follow a baby-led weaning style of introducing solid foods, sometimes I feel like I might be turning into a hippy. I mean, if someone had told me they were doing all of those things, before I had my own kid, I’d definitely think they were kind of a hippy, in a harmless way.

But all of these things, when I’ve looked into them, have just really made logical sense for us. Note how I’ve italicized selectively so that the wild Internet understands that our choices have absolutely nothing to do with their choices in any way. Anyway, is this how people become hippies? I thought you started out hippy and made your choices based on levels of crunchiness (which, by the way, I HATE – I mean, the word crunchy used as a descriptor for these types of things, mainly because I think it’s stupid). But maybe the road to being a hippy is paved with adorable cloth diapers and floor beds.

For me, though, I think what it actually comes down to is that I hate spending money on things I don’t like or personally need. I don’t need a crib, thus, floor bed. I don’t eat baby food, therefore, Penny can eat what we eat and like it. I don’t wear diapers, so… okay, I like the diapers. So I spend money on them. THEORY HOLDS UP. Not hippy, just cheap.

6. Also my baby:

7. Your opinion requested, but not a reality, rational, or fact-based opinion. A FEEEEELING opinion.

We got two cast iron enameled casseroles as generous and lovely wedding gifts. I loved them. Okay, actually? I loved that I owned them, because they made me feel like a lady who might some day make something that would require that very specific type of cooking vessel, instead of just dragging out the biggest pan I can find and using it for everything. And one time? I used them both to make soup, because I am a lifelong container misjudger and started with the small one and moved to the big one.

But Arizona isn’t really a place where you make a lot of soup, or make anything that needs to sit in a very heavy pot in a very hot oven for a very long time. I guess other people probably do, but I don’t. So, in the time I have owned them, I really haven’t used them too much.

Reading Princess Nebraska the other day, I found out that they have been recalled, because the enamel can crack and send BURNING HOT SHARDS flying at you. So, I can take them into Macy’s for a full refund, in the form of store credit, I believe.

Since they were gifts for the wedding, I feel obligated to replace them with something similar, since the givers intended for me to have cast iron enameled pot thingies, and had chosen them off my registry, in fact, where I had CHOSEN THEM FIRST, myself. So I should take them back and replace them with other heavy pots, even though I didn’t use them too much. Because maybe someday we’ll move somewhere cold (PROBABLY NOT, WE’LL BE IN ARIZONA FOREEEEVVVEEERRRRR) and I will need them. Maybe I will grow into a lady who uses those kind of pots, just like I grew into a lady who only has 1 out of every 5 or 6 dinners turn out inedible, instead of 1 of every 4 being good, 2 being edible, and 1 going straight into the trash.

Or maybe, I could cut myself a break, and just stick to the spirit of the gift and get something kitchen-related. Sheldon did just eat our good slotted spoon.

But, like I said above, I am going to start working on Penny’s room, and I bet that Macy’s has one or two cute things that we could use. Or I could put it toward her floor bed. But the gift givers did not BUY Penny a present, they bought presents for Phil and I. They didn’t know about Penny (or that Penny was 10 weeks underway at the wedding). But Penny-room-items are what we need, though at the time of the wedding, we DID specifically request, via registry, these pots that I actually never use.

So. Internet. If you end up having to return a gift, do you feel (note – FEEL – because I KNOW I can do whatever the hell I want) obligated to replace it with something similar? Would the fact that it was a gift from a registry that YOU CREATED, thus something you SPECIFCALLY ASKED FOR, have any effect on your response?

Understand that I will absolutely do whatever the hell I want when the time comes. I just want to know if anyone else has ridiculous feelings of obligation tied into the whole gift return/exhange business, and since I am the most average girl in the world, I AM SURE YOU DO.

Should I live in fear of someone coming over and saying, “Hey, where’s that 2.5 quart casserole in cobalt blue that I got for your wedding? I’d love to SEE IT!”

Even better, do you have any stories about awkward gift returns? Have you ever gotten something so awful/tacky (my pots were neither, I’m just EXPANDING) that you had to immediately return, donate or throw it away? Has anyone ever come over and asked to SEE the gift that you returned/donated/threw away? OH GOD, WHAT DID YOU EVEN SAY?