Saturday, January 26, 2013

I think you could hear crickets and for good reason...

In total honesty, things have been super stressful here. We were in limbo for several weeks. Things are looking up and hopefully the blog will be buzzing again shortly!

We appreciate all the thoughts, prayers, and support. Hopefully soon I will have an update post..and no a baby is not the reason. Apparently if you are silent people start guessing :)

Hope all is great with you and for now enjoy  fun in the leaves!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Christmas Eve

I kinda feel like this year was stressful. The not knowing of our move, the impeding date of a job ending, and the fact that Daniel only got Christmas day off made it..well I will be honest, hard. The past several years Daniel has taken the week off between Christmas and New Year and it has been great. This rotation would not allow it. We decided to wait until Christmas Eve to head over to meet my family. Initially Daniel was going to drive us over for the weekend, back to work, drive back for Christmas, back to work, etc. We decided it wasn't worth him being on the road all that extra time as well as, essentially adding more stress.

We spent some time at the park on Christmas Eve Eve.  The weather was perfect!

Fun at the park on Christmas Eve Eve

Ultimately things worked out fine and not as we had planned, even better than we imagined. We headed to my grandmothers house much earlier on Christmas Eve and even had time to finish up the shopping. (Yep I apparently have become one of those that waits until the end!) We arrived and I began the extreme wrapping of the presents I had delivered to her house. Every year I have visions of decorating each present with individual attention however, in the end I am always racing against the clock and tie an easy ribbon with a little decoration.
We had hopes to make cookies with the kids and read Christmas stories before bed. That said, I know in reality the kids will really be excited next year and we can do all those fun things!  I love the picture below from the evening:

Wyatt - Now listen this is what is going to go down tomorrow..
Matty - Whaaatttt??

My parents arrived, we had dinner, put Wyatt to bed and in an instant Santa arrived! He was greeted by a card Wyatt made and of course cookies and a Coke. Santa has to stay up late and he needs some caffeine!
We must have all been good kids this year!
 Daniel really enjoyed assembling a Tricycle and he was right in all my apprehension that Wyatt loved it! My mom and I assembled the other toys with Daniel's help..because who knew they were so hard to put together! LOL!
Christmas Eve was a success and we went to bed around 3am because Santa had quite a bit to finish up when he came down the chimney. Regardless we had a blast and were excited about the next day! 
Luckily, we aren't in that wake up super early stage of kids on Christmas morning and that makes for a fantastic day!! Wyatt woke up around 7:30-8ish had some breakfast, played, and went back down for a nap around 10. We ended up doing presents 11:30 after breakfast. It was fantastic! I know many of you are up at 5:30..sorry!
Up next Christmas "morning" and day! 

And no..still no assignment! Hopefully we will hear something early this week! Keep your fingers and toes crossed!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Well I get asked this a here goes a post about cloth diapers and how it works on the road

Some of you know that we use cloth diapers. Some of you don't. Many people think I am crazy to use cloth in the first place and then marvel or actually laugh at the fact that I do it and travel. Then they learn we don't have a real washing machine or a dryer and they kinda don't believe me. (Some of the details in this are for those of you that travel full-time visiting from families on the road blogs/sites and are wondering about space.)
I have many reasons for using them some of them being: the planet, the space to store several economy boxes of disposables, a kid with extremely sensitive skin (like as in he still breaks out with cloth), and we are saving a ton of money. So many websites have statistics and most say that you spend around $1700 to diaper a baby for around 30 months. We have spent about $200 on cloth total on the extremely high side. I have managed to purchase every diaper online and to only buy the diapers and inserts on sale or found them for buy one get one free so our cost is less than most. If you can deal with the minimum amount in the beginning this is how I suggest to build up your diapers. I read a lot about cloth and several people suggested to do this and it really helped ease me into cloth to make sure I could do it, liked the diapers, and saved us money.  We also do not have the space to store a lot of cloth (much less disposables) so this keeps my "stash" low!

Cloth has come a long way from what your mama used. There are websites, blogs, and stores devoted to them. They have so many kinds on the market: All In Ones, Pockets, Hybrids, Flats, etc. It is overwhelming. I decided way before we had kids that I wanted to use cloth, so when the reality hit diapers were coming people thought I was crazy. This included Daniel. He wasn't really on board until he saw first hand the cost of diapers and how easy the cloth was to use. He was convinced he wasn't going to be able to "assemble" them.

Anyway here goes. This is how I am able to cloth diaper on the road. I have a bin in which I keep all the inserts, covers, wipes, and wet  bags. I really do not have room for much more. Although Santa did bringing two new diapers for be jealous! :)  We mainly use the Flips brand of diapers although we do have a few others in the mix. The Flip Diaper System is a flexible, hybrid cloth diapering system that provides options for every occasion.You can choose from a few varying kinds of inserts. The cover is one size meaning that is snaps open (bigger) as he grows and will adjust with him. Through trial and error I use a microfiber insert  that lays easily inside the cover as well as, an organic flat or liner over it due to the extremely sensitive skin. I do have to change diapers more often with cloth as opposed to disposables because of the rash battle.  

When I change a diaper I immediately rinse the it in the shower if it is just wet or dispose of said products and rinse outside. I never have to touch said products as they go into the toilet. The wet diapers go into the diaper pail.  More often than not I wash diapers every day so they go directly into the Wonder Washer. If putting diapers directly into washer I fill it with hot water and add soap at that time so they can soak for a few hours before washing.
Basic of basic pail kept in bathroom
The Wonder Washer is a "portable" washing machine that I crank to wash the clothes. It is like a HE washer in that it doesn't have an agitator. It is easy to use. I fill it with HOT HOT water, drop in a small squirt of detergent, apply the lid, crank it for a minute and a half, drain, and repeat with water to rinse. I do two to three rinses based on if suds are present or not. I have learned to get all the soap out to help with rashes and have read that helps with decreasing a "build up" that causes problems with absorbing. Rinsing is key!
Filling up the Wonder Washer. It is stored and used in the bottom of the shower.
Full of diaper inserts/covers and ready to go.
Then I drain the WWasher and wring out the diapers. I want to get a "dryer/spinner" however, I haven't figured out the storage of one so I have been wringing them out for a year and half! F.u.n. HA! Then I hang them on a foldable hanging dryer from Ikea. Obviously if it is sunny and the least bit warm they go outside to be sunned and dry much faster. Then sun also provides an opportunity for them to disinfect. Currently it is raining so they are in the shower until they stop dripping then move out into the living room for faster drying under a fan. I do use disposables more often when it rains as it takes longer (days) for the diapers to dry and I can't be super mom! LOL!
 I also wash them at the laundry mat once a week for a good deep wash to keep the "stink" away. I have been very lucky with our system and we have not a problem with stinky diapers like so many that use cloth. I think the main reason is because I wash them almost daily so they don't have an opportunity to sit.

Anyway, there you have it. Yes it is a little more work for me but not much. Really, I am proof you can travel and cloth diaper. I completely understand that it is not for everyone however, many people have asked so I decided to do a post on it.  We have been using disposals at night and have recently started playing around with using a disposable with a thin cloth diaper over it. I am so over wet sheets and jammies!! That said it is hard for me to even find room to store one box of disposables! LOL! I hope this helps those of you wondering about traveling with cloth. Let me know if you have more questions!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy Holidays and a Joyful New Year

No news on the move..please keep your fingers and toes crossed for us!