Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Your Imaginary Gift Basket

If I could build you a gift basket for your new life with a budget-less amount of money, here's what I would include:

1.  Colic Calm--it's a very handy product that just so happens to turn your kid's poop black.  Black!?  Yes, the homeopathic product uses carbo vegetabilis (vegetable charcoal) to sooth baby.  It's awesome for helping with reflux, gas, and hiccups.  The down side is it costs about $20--but when your in desperate need of relief, it's a small price to pay!

razberry teether
2.  Several small teething toys and rattles.  I've found these are my favorite toys because Sam loves them at home and it's very easy to travel with several thrown into the diaper bag!

3.  Sam hasn't cut any teeth yet, but we've really enjoyed these Razbaby Raz-Berry silicone teethers.  He also looks hilarious sucking/chewing on these!

4.  Burp clothes.  An abundance of burp cloths.  Lots and lots of burp clothes.

5.  A 6 month subscription to Netflix, because some of us don't love reading books and when babies are little, they mostly just get held and if you don't have something to do, it can get boring!

There are tons more things I'd love to give you in your imaginary gift basket, but I've already busted my baby shower budget with these!  What else do you think you would add to the basket?

Friday, September 7, 2012


Dear Initially-Started-Out-Breastfeeding-and-Now-Only-Use-Formula Mama,

I call you this crazy-long name because my husband told me that "milk-switching mama" was not clear enough.  The point of this, though, is that you are a special breed...a breed that doesn't even have a short name to describe yourself.  You are a breed of mama that often gets forgotten, misunderstood or looked-down on for your decision.  You are a mama, who is doing the right thing for your family.

You are a mama who really believed that "Breast is best" and wanted that for your child.  You tried to make it work, you truly did your best, but somewhere along the way you switched milks.

ISOBANOUF Mama, you may have started out breastfeeding and knew you were only going to continue for 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, etc.  Or you may have been a mom who planned on nursing your child into his teenage years (just kidding).  But now you have switched.

Maybe your maternity leave was very short and you decided it was better for both of you to make the switch earlier rather than later.

 Maybe you tried and tried to get your baby to latch and he wouldn't and it was unrealistic (or unsuccessful) for you to pump every few hours for the next year.

Maybe it was because a nurse in the NICU decided for you by giving your baby a bottle without asking you first and you were a first-time mom who didn't know to stop her.

Maybe your baby had a dairy allergy and it was unrealistic for you to not consume any dairy for the next year and you found a formula that relieved the discomfort in your baby's tummy.

Maybe the time commitment of breastfeeding was dragging you down emotionally and you needed to be able to take an extended break from your baby (without having to pump).  Or maybe you had to go on a business trip!

Maybe your supply ran low and you went to a lactation consultant, your pediatrician, your obstetrician, and your prayer group, but with no success.

Maybe you started having chest pain and trouble breathing, went to the ER, found out you had a heart condition that necessitated taking medicine that was not approved for breastfeeding mamas (you could have taken a lesser drug that would have given you a higher percentage for your condition to return) and chose your own heart health over breastfeeding.  {Was this example a little too specific? ;-) }

Maybe it was because you were constantly worried about how much milk your baby was getting and the stress was too much to handle.  Or maybe the hormones from breastfeeding were giving you constant yeast infections.

ISOBANOUF Mama, I want to tell you that no matter what your reason is--you're still a good mama--a GREAT mama even!  You looked at your family's situation and made the best choice.  Please don't let other breast feeding mamas make you feel like less of a mama.

ISOBANOUF Mama, I'm proud of you for taking care of your baby.  I'm proud of you for not judging others whose decisions differ from yours.  I'm proud of you for swallowing your pride and for loving other whose strong opinions make you want to cry or scream.

Initially-Started-Out-Breastfeeding-and-Now-Only-Use-Formula Mama, whatever brought you to this place is ok.  As you wash that bottle for the hundredth time and scoop that sixtieth scoop of formula, pray over your little one and praise the Lord that he is growing health and strong.


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

I am Angela Bennett

When I was growing up, my family and I really enjoyed Sandra Bullock movies.  We would watch (the tv version of) Speed over and over again.   Our favorite holiday-season movie soon became While You were Sleeping and still gets quoted often when topics of Cuba or mashed potatoes are brought up in conversation.

However, more recently I realized, if I'm not careful, I could easily become Angela Bennett--the character Sandra Bullock plays in The Net.
"Angela Bennett's a software engineer type who works from home and has few friends outside of cyberspace. Taking her first vacation in years she becomes embroiled in a web (sic) of computer espionage."
 While I don't see computer espionage in my future, I am realizing how easy it is to become a home-body.  I've been recently firing up my on-line craft store and, after making a sale, I was thrilled when I realized I could print a shipping label from my computer and take the package to my mailbox and never have to get in the car.  Convenient?  Yes.  Healthy pattern to start?  No.

Being a stay at home mom (or as I like to call it, a work-at-home-parent) has made it very easy for me to forget how to socialize (Facebook and Twitter don't always count as socializing).  Between my son's sleep needs, food needs, and diaper changing needs, it often seems easier just to stay at home.  As Sam gets older, (requiring less napping) I am confident we will get out on a regular basis, but for now I find myself getting too comfortable becoming a hermit. 

Have you found yourself clinging to social media (as your main source of socialization) more than you did before you became a parent?  Are you confident others could identify you if you were ever "embroiled in a web of computer espionage?"  Do you love Sandra Bullock movies as much as my family!?

Here is my new store: