For a number of years, at least since Bubba started taking an interest in what went into our grocery cart, I have wanted to make some sort of visual grocery list game. I talked to my hubby about it last week and he thought it was a good idea.
Today Boo and I took to the recycle bin to cut pictures out of the grocery store flyers of common items we purchase. So far we’ve got just over 50.
Boo working the safety scissors!
My plan is to glue the pictures to black bristol board, put the words for each picture, and have it laminated. After that I’ll cut the large sheet of bristol board into cards about 4″x4″. I’m not sure if I’m going to punch holes in each card and have them on a stationery ring or if I’m going to make some sort of booklet for the cards to slide into. The big idea is to have a visual shopping list for the boys to use so they are involved in shopping with me. In time we’ll use it as an opportunity to talk about price comparison on products, how to spell the names of products like “potato” or “milk”, and maybe even use it as a speed game where they each have their own set of cards that they need to find the products and bring them to the cart the fastest. Racing always works with my boys!
I feel lucky and blessed to live in Canada for many reasons. Today that reason is because I have my job guaranteed for a year after having a baby. I gave birth to our third Treble boy on December 31, 2012 and now I get a whole calendar year at home with my boys to witness their growth, tantrums, fights, and stages. I love my boys dearly but some days are easier than others.
My older boys, ages 2 and 3, have spent the last 5 months at an amazing daycare where they followed a schedule where they did physical activities, crafts, free play, outdoor play, singing, finger plays, you name it; they’ve done it! I LOVED their daycare but couldn’t fathom paying almost $1400/month for daycare we weren’t going to use full time and while I was at home so we reluctantly withdrew the boys from daycare. Attending the daycare has made for amazing growth in my boys but now they also expect the routine. Days when we have no routine at home make for torturous behavior from my older boys so I’ve decided to roughly follow a routine most days.
A few weeks ago we went to a friend’s son’s 4th birthday party where the kids turned on a movie, The Lorax. My oldest son loved the movie so much that we borrowed it for a couple weeks. I’m not sure how many times he watched that movie before we returned it but it was a LOT! Anyway, he asked repeatedly to make “real trees like the Lorax”. After some internet searching I saw that the trees were called Truffela Trees. My initial idea was to use paper straws and pom poms. I found some pins on Pinterest that used cotton candy, marabou boas, and yarn but I decided to go with my gut. Here are our Truffela Trees.
Our Truffela Trees
The boys chose the pom poms they wanted, I dunked the ends of the straws in high tack craft glue, and we both held the pom poms in place for about 30 seconds while the glue permated the pom pom and held onto it. Then I inverted a small paper plate and cut little X shapes in it to hold the trees. Ta da!
Part of being a “munchy” mommy is that we use cloth diapers about 95% of the time. We’re not SO granola that we refuse to use disposable diapers from time to time but we like the idea of our kids’ butts being wrapped in virtually chemical-free cloth diapers. When I first heard of Smartipants diapers I was pregnant with my first son, Bubba. He was born so skinny that our Smartipants took a while to fit him in the legs. Our second son, Boo, was born almost a pound and a half heavier than his older brother had been and he fit the Smartipants quite quickly.
I recently saw a giveaway at Letters from Momma for a Smartipants diaper and thought it would be a great way to add to our stash of 12 Smartipants. We’ve only got the original color set in boy/neutral colors and I’d love to dress my boys’ bums in some vibrant colors like the newest colors of Smartipants.
From reading Letters from Momma’s blog review of Smartipants I have become inspired to try my Smartipants again for night time. I’m going to ask Kaylene more details on her night time stuffing routine. Heck, we may reduce our disposable diaper use even more if we can get a night time no leak solution!
Day 4 was an average, run of the mill day. Bubba was a bundle of energy and was testing me by the end of the day. Hubby had gone out to our farm to seed our own crop and had thought that he’d be home by 5:30 so I could go to my pilates class. Things didn’t happen that way though. At the 11th hour I called a friend to come over with her son to watch Bubba and Boo until Hubby could get home.
The evening was busy and by the time the kids were in bed I still had diapers to wash, wring, snap, and hang out. Phew!
Day 5 started out as any other day. Now, I have to say I’m a stay at home mom right now but I do direct sales for a children’s clothing company, I’m working on my Master’s Degree, my husband in in agriculture and he’s working long hours right now to get seeding done, oh, and my kids are almost 13 months apart. Even before the flats challenge started I was contemplating using sposies for a day for my own sanity.
We had plans to go to a friend’s house then to a playground. Boo was fine. He laid on the floor to have his diaper changed like every other morning. Bubba was another story altogether. He’s 19 months old and has recently started balking diaper changes. With our pockets it’s not really an issue because I can change him while he’s standing. Today was one of those days and we really needed to get out the door AND the flats weren’t dry on the line again. Boo wore a flat and Bubba wore a sposie on our outing.
By the time we got home from our outing and I checked the diapers again they STILL weren’t dry at 11:45am. I took them down, threw them in the dryer, and the boys had a sposie day. I cheated but I haven’t failed. Back to flats tomorrow!
Day 3 did NOT start out how I had hoped. I had hung out my diapers the night before and was expecting them to be dry and ready to use by morning. The weather had other ideas. I guess we had frost overnight so the diapers were not even close to being dry in the morning. I left them out until nearly lunch time and used my flannel flats which are my least favorite. I just feel like they hold so much wetness next to my babies’ skin.
We got by until about 11:30 when most of the flats were dry. That night Boo had a hard time falling asleep. It was 10pm when I was finally done getting him to bed then Hubby and I had to eat supper. Some nights it’s just too crazy for us to all eat supper together so that happens. I still washed my diapers by hand but I threw them in the dryer. I just couldn’t bring myself to stand out in the cold, dark night snapping and hanging diapers for 20-30 minutes. I rationalized my choice by saying that even someone without daily access to a washer and dryer would use one some of the time, say at a laundromat.
Today I decided to use 1 large flat, either flour sack towel or flannel, with a small Gerber flat as a doubler. I Origami folded the larger flat and tucked the smaller, pad folded flat into the last fold of the Origami fold. I used my Snappis all day too. They worked pretty well until Bubba got another Snappi bite on his hip right before bed. I’ve got to work on my Snappi skills.
I washed the diapers in my camp style washer after the kids were all showered up and ready for bed. Daddy played with both of them while I washed all 4 covers, 8 large flats, and 8 small flats in 2 loads. I also rinsed them under running water after washing this time instead of in the camp style washer. I did this mostly because my arms and shoulders were so tired after the wash.
After the boys were tucked all snug in their beds I went outside and wrung out, snapped, and hung all those diapers, some wipes, and my covers. As I did this alone in my yard, wondering if the neighbours were watching, I thought about how my mother did this for her younger sister, my grandmothers did this for their children, my great grandmothers and a chain of other women in my family tree have all done this for generations for their children.
I wasn’t alone in my yard; I was surrounded by a tradition of mothers.