Monthly Archives: March 2011

DIY: cloth wipes

I get lots of compliments from people about 80’s skin, including from her pediatrician.

“What do you do so she has such great skin?”, they ask.

“Neglect.”, I answer. 80 has never been bathed more than once a week. Her critical areas are cleaned multiple times a day, with each diaper change. Once she started eating solids, and she’d end up with avocado in her hair, parsnips ground into her sleeves and tiny bits of everything between her fingers, we’d just do a sponge bath of the necessary bits, or hold her hands under running water.

I’m pretty sure this is the way babies are supposed to be. Giving too many baths (and using too much soap) dries out a baby’s skin. Using disposable wipes with fragrance and cleaners on them (including alcohol) seem to do more to irritate than to help. I’m sure bouts of diaper rash are common, and 80 just happens to have resilient skin. She’s had diaper rash, but not much, and not for long. I attribute this to cloth wipes.


Basically, I cut up a cotton flannel receiving blanket into 7×7″ squares, put two together, and zig-zag stitched along the sides to keep them from unraveling. I have a spray bottle with water in it, which I spray onto a dry wipe before using. 80 likes to watch me spray the water on the cloth. There’s the cool “chhh chhh” sound, and water droplets. It’s an infant’s equivalent of going to a water park.

If there’s a large mess, or mild diaper rash, I add a spray or two of California Baby Non-Burning & Calming Diaper Area Wash to the cloth with the water. If the diaper rash is more than mild, I don’t use any, because despite the name, it does seem to sting.

What I’d do differently if I were to make wipes again is to only use light-colored fabric, because I can see how much poo has come off onto the wipe, which helps me figure out if there’s any left. (Clean wipe after a swipe, clean baby.) I also wouldn’t double the fabric. I’m sure it’d be harder to stitch the edges, but the fabric is thick enough that doubling is not necessary. Instead, there would be thinner folds of fabric to use to get into the little baby crevices.

Why so serious?

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A scrape, a bruise, lunch, and blue fuzz from the rug adorn my child’s grille.

During the course of today, 80 got scrapes on both sides of her cheeks. Of course,this should remind you of that teeshirt of Heath Ledger’s The Joker. Naturally.

The right side of her face is a combo scrape and bruise, the left side a plain ol’ scrape. The scrabruise happened this morning before naptime. There is a rule — let’s call it The Pre-Toddler Law, that states “the closer you are to nap time (and thus the less balanced and coordinated you are), the more it will hurt when you fall down”. The very same biff would be shaken off with nary a cry if 80 had been fresh, but since it was just before a nap, she took it hard.

On the upside, isn’t she cute anyway?

Crane Humidifiers: not scared of futureworld

Long story short, my Hello Kitty humidifier kicked it. I emailed the company asking for a replacement, and they said sure — all I have to do is cut off the cord to the humidifier and send it to them (to protect them from scammers, I imagine). I emailed back and asked if I could take a video of me cutting off the cord, instead of having to buy a mailer, pay for postage, and hardest of all: lug my baby through the sloshy streets to the post office.

I figured there was about a 25% chance of them saying yes. If I was right that they wanted the cord as proof that the humidifier was not going to be used again, a video should do it. That being said, I could imagine a company having a rigid policy that didn’t allow for anything but what they’d stipulated. Or they required the cord for some other reason.

I was pleased to get a response saying they’d be happy to accept a video, as long as I made sure the whole humidifier was in the shot. Easy peasy with my Mac computer. 80 is napping, so I just shot the video, edited out the end where I lunge for the pause button (once an AV geek, always an AV geek), uploaded it to Youtube for your enjoyment, and blogged this all in about 15 minutes.

Quick, before it’s too late

Now that I have a child, every time I see an ad for a restaurant I never made it to, or an event that sounds like fun (but I know I wouldn’t have gone to), I think that if I had just known what life would be like post-baby, I would have been a little more carpe diem.

That’s not to say that I live in a fortress of solitude.I do go out without a baby strapped to me, and I have a great support group who babysit (also paid babysitters, which are fine but OH MY GOD $15 an hour is so much more than I made as a babysitter) so I can do things like go out for dinner (like we did last week for a very belated birthday) or kayaking.

Just now, as I quietly opened a beer in the kitchen (80’s room is next door), I had a realization. I was pondering why I hadn’t been more adventurous in going out to events pre-baby. The realization is that the impending baby feeling didn’t hit us until I was well into pregnancy. I’m sure this serves an important procreative purpose, since thinking about diapers and colic too much would probably put usall off having a babies everl.

The downside is that I only realize in retrospect how much more fun I could have been having. If you would have asked me two years ago if I wanted to go across the city on a school night to see an author speak at a bookshop, I would have probably passed. Now, I’d say “OH MY GOD YES, AND ARE YOU WILLING TO BABYSIT TOO?”, because getting a break from family life is a Real Big Treat now.

So, you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone, to quote Joni Mitchell* in the original, ungrammatically correct line from “Big Yellow Taxi”. You don’t want to scare yourself out of having a family, so don’t think too hard about this (unless you have children, in which case, I’d really like to hear your thoughts en-comment).

If I could turn back time**, I’d let not-yet-mama Sonya know that taking weekend trips outta town, or going to skillshares are easy and a treat, that they will be missed in the future.

For now, I do get to say that I THOROUGHLY enjoy any outing I get, and I’m sure there are aspects about life right now that I’ll wish I could freeze. Hmm. Like, perhaps, the fact that my child has never yet intentionally defied me.

*It’s been said more than once that Mitchell’s my celebrity doppelganger.
**I’m not going to bother quoting Cher, since it’s a lot less poignant.

I leave for five minutes …

DSC_0789, originally uploaded by sundaykofax.

In the background is the recycling bin (and the litter box). In the foreground is my baby, my visiting brother and a catalog (now human hamster nest). They had a blast, and I got to have a leisurely shower.

Things have been rough for me, and it’s great to have my brother visiting. I think I’d like to write more about what’s been going on, because it’s exactly the stuff that no one tells you when you have a baby, and yet it’s not totally scary where I’d not want to talk about it for fear it will end human procreation.

I’ll work on that post, and continue to post cute pictures in the meantime. My new camera is inspiring to shoot more, although we put most of the pictures on our private Flickr account. If you know us, you can find us as Wadsgreen, and we’ll befriend you.