Friday, June 17, 2011

green things we sow, green things we grow

today i did a bit of investigating into the vegetable seeds my little babe and i planted not so long ago, hoping for a sign of progress. i was not disappointed in the sprouts that have exploded through the soil! reaching for the light and lending green to their pots, out seeds are springing forth and promising eatables and edibles for our plates once harvest time is here.

among the green things we are growing, i am doing a small part for the greener good of our lovely planet, too. strange as i sound, nothing makes me happier than a laundry basket topped with cloth diapers and covers. today, with the morning sun, i finally got to hang my cloth to bleach in the bright rays. i often get confused looks or joking comments about our use of cloth diapers at home, but the truth must come out that i find it simpler to do cloth than i do disposable. we still keep our disposable supply for night time dryness and going out of the house, but at home i am happy to fold a prefold, secure it on little c with a snappi, and strap on a kissaluvs marvel or bummis super brite cover. when the day is through, depending on how many soiled diapers i have hanging in my wet bag, i fill the washer with cold water, add some biokleen and borax, shake the poo into the toilet (easier with the consumption of solid foods), toss the diapers, sans covers, in, and soak overnight. in the morning i run a rinse cycle, turn the dial to hot/cold wash with two rinse cycles, add a little more borax and tide free & gentle (same ingredients as our beloved dreft but $5 cheaper!), toss in the covers and wet bags, and off they go. hang them dry, fluff them in the dryer, bleach them in the sun and they are good for use. no need for a wet pail (gross?!), or expensive or fancy cleaners. i plan to invest in a sprayer to attach to the toilet for more efficient cleaning before soaking, but my diapers are clean, fresh, and *mostly* stain free. what stains i have encountered have disappeared in the sunshine. a little vinegar in the rinse cycle has prevented any smells (precautionary measure, but i want to avoid the possibility) and i have also heard lemon juice can do the same but have not tried it. all in all, i love my cloth and my little one in a colorful diaper cover looks cute to boot!

Monday, June 13, 2011

inviting teeth to tea

pictured above, my mom has been loving being 'grammy,' and now requests she have her grandson for a sleepover once a month since the last one went so well. i see no reason to object!

in five days, i am only now realizing, our wee wren turns seven months old. yesterday we saw the signs of his third tooth poking out of his top front gums. though i have known of his teething for a few weeks, i had yet to see any real signs until e pointed out the small white pearl while little c was laughing hysterically at being tickled. there it was, just peeking out at us. being early at everything (save for being born) has been our wee bean's forte, but this does not ease a mother's nerves as she watches her babe grow too-fast before her eyes!

the tooth is only the beginning of new things, the list is growing with each day. not only are teeth on the table, but pushing himself to sitting while on his tummy, as well as 'hopping' along on all fours. not quite up to speed on crawling, he sort of jumps his little legs forward while on hands and knees, but has yet to get his hands to move forward in rhythm. and, at lease for me, the biggest hurtle has been conquered for over a week: sleeping through the night! after many weeks of waking two and three times a night, crying, tantrums, and asking to be fed, my darling e and i were desperate for a solution. unsure of what to do, my exhausted brain was begging for the relief of sleep. finally, one evening, e came home from work and marched straight to me exclaiming 'i know what to do!' his solution? A LATER BEDTIME. why on earth had we not considered this before? we have been putting c to bed at 7:00 p.m. on the dot for months without much thought as to whether he was truly tired enough by that point. his waking again at 11:00 p.m. most nights should have been our first clue. so that night we pushed our little one's bedtime back to 9:00 p.m. and though keeping him awake so late was a bit tough that first time, he slept soundly through the night until 6:30 a.m. the following night we did the same, only lessening the time by half an hour. at 8:30 p.m. we put him to bed and only woke to hear his stirring and fussing at 4:30 a.m. but instead of rising to get him, i waited and listened. after 15 minutes he fell soundly to sleep and did not rise until 8:30 a.m. and so this has continued, allowing me some much deserved rest.

lastly, but not the least of things, is that he now says 'mumma' very clearly and is working on other words and sounds much more lately. the babble is starting to really come out and i find myself amazed and in awe of the things i hear coming from my wee one's lips. will not be long before i hear his first sentences!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

green thumbs

as things have progressed with the interior of our house, my goal this year was to make changes on the exterior as well. with sunny days leading the way, i have set out to accomplish some yard work, baby in tow. strapping little c in the moby wrap on my back, i grabbed gloves, shovels, rakes, soil, seeds, plants, and my watering can and got to work.

a few weeks ago i dug flower beds along the entire front of our home. equipped with my spade, i turned over each patch of grass and shook the dirt from the roots before piling the grassy clumps to be transplanted in the backyard. after the beds were turned up and raked out, i planted my various wild flowers, phlox, dianthus, geranium, zinnia, aster, sweet william, marigold, cosmos, and transplanted a section of our peony which has been rooted at the base of our large spruce tree for much longer than i have lived here, for sure.

after the front beds had been completed and successfully growing for a few weeks, i decided i felt confident enough in my green thumb to tackle the backyard. again, strapping my string bean to my back, i dug the large bare patch that never grows grass next to our porch and adorned it with iris and tiger lily and some bluebells from my mother's own gardens. i then dug out the corner by our porch steps, which was full of clay and rock, and lovingly planted a wild rose and a few miscellaneous purple and pink carpet flowers. skirting the edge of the corner bed with small stones i uncovered while digging, i stepped back to admire my work. little c soon grew tired and required a nap, so i put him to bed, snatched up the baby monitor, and headed back outside determined to complete far more.

grabbing up the large pots that have been lying dormant in the garage, and the overlarge bag of potting soil, which required all of my efforts to carry to the back porch, i set to the task of planting a pot with some early girl tomatoes which my mother had an abundance of and passed on to me. never having planted them myself, i took a few tips from her as i put the four tomato plants in the designated pot. covering them with soil and fertilizer, i moved to my next pot. i decided this should be my herb pot as i had a few misfit plants in need of permanent housing. with the large (and rather ragged looking) lemon balm my neighbor sweetly left on my doorstep, some basil i had originally sprouted in a wet paper towel, and some sad little dill which had not fared as well as the basil, along with a mystery herb i suspect to be coriander, i created a clay pot of herbal lovelies and placed in next to our front step in the small white rocking chair that will someday be caleb's to play in. not to stop there, i sowed seeds into my other large pot in which a blend of salad edibles will grow. radish, chive, lettuce, and cucumber will hopefully be peaking out of the soil very soon and growing into tasty treats for our summer salads.

once all were planted, i filled my watering can to the brim and watered all of my fresh plantings well. since my babe was taking an extra long nap, i even made to hose down the driveway of all the debris and fir needles that had never been swept away this spring. with a clean driveway, newly planted flowers and eatables ready for summer weather, i am feeling even more inspired and hope to pick up a few more plants for growing. even better yet are the plans for landscaping our backyard this year. e bought a trimmer and edger to clear cut the weeds and overgrowth that's always been a hassle so that we may take back our yard and sculpt it into something amazing. the potential has always been there, but now we are motivated and able to get to it! i was raised to, and as a result am a firm believer in, appreciate and care for what you have. preservation of beloved things is something i do well (make a note of the 18-year-old four poster bed and dresser set that was a gift for my 8th birthday..) and i so look forward to tending what we have here. it may not be grandiose, but that says nothing for what it is or can be with our TLC.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

competing with thunder

 today began with sunshine and birds, but quickly changed it's outfit to sport downpours and thunderstorms. so, while my wee wren tried to figure out what all of the racket was about, i decided to let him make a little of his own. how did we accomplish this? good ol' fashioned pots n' pans drumset! pulling out an assortment of our old pots and pans, strainers, sifters, and wooden utensils (all of which we have many varieties), i placed them on the floor of the living room in a half circle and plunked c down in the middle of it. after handing him the spoons, he was off mastering his drum solo with great flair. now, here we sit an hour later, and my mini-drummer is still banging away happily on his makeshift drumset. what a rocking way to spend our rainy afternoon!