Monday, February 28, 2011

Dacian's Perfect Heart

Here is the ultrasound picture I was referring to when Freddy said, "he has a perfect heart". I still tear up when I think about it. Look just above him (it is a profile shot for those that don't know what they are looking at), you will see the shape of  a heart.

Getting Nervous

Here is a little bit of background before I get into today's post.

Today we went for a regular check up. I had thought something might be wrong when the u/s tech kept looking at the baby's heart. Today we found out that the u/s tech found Echgenic Foci (multiple white spots on the heart). The doctor said it is probablly nothing but is sending us to a high risk specialist for a followup u/s just to check it out more. I asked if everything else looked normal and on track for him and she said yes. We booked our appt for March 8th.

In typical fashion I needed retail therapy and more information. I was really trying to keep my calm and did so for a quite a while. Freddy and I drove to the mall in almost complete silence just holding hands. I really wanted to buy a fetal doppler just so I can listen to his heart even though I know I just heard his strong heart as he was kicking the doppler at the doctor's office. I needed something. Anything. We go there before the stores opened up so we just walked around. Freddy told me not to stress over little things. I told him I am not stressing but emotional. He even mentioned that a VBAC may not be a possibility. I would cut myself into a million pieces for my son. That is the last thing on my mind.

Motherhood was still closed but downstairs Build a Bear Workshop was open. We went just to kill time. I wanted to get Dacian a bear with a strong heart in it as symbol of hoping that everything turns out ok. We found a gray wolf and bought that. We both kissed the heart trying not to break down in front of the lady stuffing the wolf. I now had exactly what I needed.
When I got home I of course started researching with Freddy. We did find out that it is a "soft marker" for Downs Syndrome. I also did find out that it can be an indication for congential heart disease. This is what Freddy's father died from and has always been at the forefront of my concern for Freddy. I am always hounding him to get his heart and bp checked. 
I cried and cried and read and read. I declined the Quad Screen test because i knew that no matter what, even with Down Syndrome that my son would be my son and we would love, support and encourage him as we would with any child with any ability or disability. I am terrified of heart problems.
Freddy told me when he got home after running errands before I came to work that he has a perfectly good heart. I of course replied with "we don't know for sure yet". He then pointed out the outline of a heart right above Dacian in his ultrasound picture. A perfect heart. I now can't stop staring at it and thinking he does have a perfect heart. No matter what. He is my perfect little pirate prince with a perfect heart.  No matter what.

I love my husband for things like this. I know it scares him and he is being strong for me and I couldn't be more grateful for it. I don't know what I ever did to deserve such a wonderful person in my life but, I do know that every day I will pay forward the generosity to others.
Sorry this is so long. I promise to keep it updated."

Next week is the appointment with the specialist. I am now getting really nervous. I have actually been pretty calm, positive and mellow for the past couple of weeks. Now that I think about it I am scared. I want my pirate prince to be perfect. I want him to be ok. I am not sure what exactly I am expecting but, there is a creeping feeling of dread coming in.

Breathe in and out. In and out.

Cloth Diapers (not what you think)

There are a lot of sites, blogs and information out there about cloth diapering. I am not going to write a review as there are a lot of them out there and I am not going to give you any information on how to care for them. I am going to tell you what you may or may not know about cloth diapering from my perspective.

When I found out I was pregnant with this baby (Dacian) I knew that I wanted to cloth diaper. At this point I was thinking the old school folding cotton diaper with the rubber pants. I was comfortable doing that and knew that we would save a lot of money. I remember my BFF telling me about G-Diapers long before I was pregnant. I looked them up. I wasn't exactly impressed. So, I start researching and came accross GroVia. I was really hyped about trying them. Seemed really simple. Then my BFF got wind of this and sent me a link to the  Best Bottoms website. And wow! This looked like exactly what I would make if I were to make a cloth diaper.

I continued on my journey of research and came accross even more brands and styles. I kept going back to the Best Bottom Diapers. I haven't wavered since.

I know you are probablly still very hesitant on cloth diapering. It can seem to be dirty, messy, too much time, too much laundry and what not. And forget all the stuff you might come accross on amonia smells, stripping, leaking, trying the right one for your baby. That will just make you give up before you even start. This is my arguement for cloth diapering.

1. You will save a ton of money.
     Freddy and I have estimated our savings over 3 years with Best Bottoms that we will save over $2,000. The initial cost for us was just about $400. I decided to go with the hemp inserts as they are more obsorbent, thinner (by a lot), and hypoallergenic. So our initial start up cost was a bit more then you might have if you go the microfiber inserts.  What is an insert? That is that cloth thing you snap into the cover that obsorbs all the pee and poo. Just like a regular disposable diaper.

    Our stash consists of 8 shells (covers in vanilla {white}), 31 small hemp/organic cotton inserts and 4 overnight soakers.

    Even with the cost of laundry soap and doing an extra small load of laundry every other day we still come out to over $2000 in savings over 3 years. That's right. 3 years!

2. It really is easy.
    Most people think that cloth diapering is gross because you have to deal with poop. Um, you have to do that anyway with a disposable diaper. Do you not plan on cleaning the poo off your baby's butt? There are blow outs no matter what kind of diaper you use or how you decide to feed. Messes happen. Deal with it. You should NEVER EVER EVER throw human waste in the trash anyway. You are supposed to empty the poo out of a disposable diaper into the toilet before you throw it away anyway. Seriously, how disgusting is it to know that you have 6-10 poop and/or pee filled diapers sitting in your trash can next to or in your kitchen. How about in your baby's room? Really?! You might think that is okay but a cloth diaper pail with the same stuff in it is gross? In comparison it isn't so bad. Before your baby starts solids the poo is water soluble anyway. If you feel so inclined you can rinse it off with a sprayer or just rinse it off in the washer. No biggy. I wont get into how to wash the diapers as there is plenty of info out there to be found.
   There are diapers out there called All In Ones (AIOs). This is pretty much the cloth equivelant to a disposable. If you still feel really grossed out, go with one of those. Easy peasy.

3. Less diaper rash.
     Yep. That's right. Cloth diapering can and has been proven to reduce the currency and severity of diaper rash. How is that? Well, think of it this way. Disposable diapers have many chemicals in them and are made of plastic and other composites to make them more obsorbent while staying nice and trim. Great idea. NOT!
How many of you noticed that your little one has peed. But, you don't change it right away because the diaper can still obsorb more? I don't know of a single parent that isn't guilty of this. Now. just imagine  you sitting your happy little butt in a diaper for hours that is wet. Or how about you just sit in a bucket of amonia. I know, drastic comparison but, not really. The chemical reaction that ensues with amonia from pee and the chemicals in the diaper create a pretty corosive environment. That's not even adding in the poo. And bam! Diaper rash. There are multiple different kinds of diaper rash and I am not saying that all are caused by disposable diapers. I am referring to the one you get from not changing the disposable as soon as you should.
     Cloth diapers guarantee that you change the diaper more often with no chemicals in them so you get less of that irritation. Again, there is a lot of info out there to be found. This is only my thoughts.

The main thing that really got us cloth diapering is the savings and less of an environmental impact. Since, it takes 500+ years for a disposable diaper to biodegrade that got us thinking on how we can lower our impact on the environment. I know that I can use the inserts for cleaning when the baby is done using them or I can resell them. Also, if for any reason they should get tossed, I know they will biodegrade in a lot less time with no impact on the environment then a disposable diaper.

One of the perks about cloth diapering is that you can get really cute styles of covers to compliment your lifetyle or baby. Here are some of my favorites.

I will probablly have a lot more to say late on about cloth diapering. I will say to definately give it a shot. No better way to be an EcoGothMom then to cloth diaper your little prince or princess.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Quiet Sunday

Sunday's are my lazy day. That is if you count cleaning the house top to bottom, average of 3-5 loads of laundry and a miriad of DIY projects lazy. But, today truely is a lazy day. I got all the cleaning done and it is much too windy to think about sanding down the baby's dresser. So I have been contemplating how to decorate a very large wall in my house. I want a vintage/modern/ecochic/goth look. Yeah, I know. WTH? and how in the world could you incorporate all of that?

Well, that is the exact question I have been posing to myself for a long time. I don't have a large budget to play with and nor do I want the project to take a long time to do (as in "we are in the process of redecorating 2 years later). I also don't want what everyone else has. In other words I want this to be completely unique.

On this nice relaxing Sunday, blissfully listening to the Cocteau Twins I figured it out. I can't post my own pics yet as I haven't started (though I promise many pics will be posted) so I will try to explain this the best I can.

I have vaulted ceilings in my townhouse. 2 story vaulted to be exact. The wall I am wanting to decorate is about 21 feet long and 2 stories high.  This is the wall behind my couch.  I have decided that I want 2 real tree branches with no leaves on it, something like this:

but painted black to frame up and around the couch. In between and possible around I want different types and sizes of empty picture frames painted black and silver. This is the inspiration for that.
I do have a wonderful black/white/silver clock that Freddy bought a while back that will be the center piece. I might even incoprate in some random frames some of my cemetary photography. 

I am excited to start this project. It wont take a lot of time, upcycles old or unused frames, uses natural materials, has a psuedo vintage yet modern look and due to the "death/life" theme it makes it "goth".  Now, just to get it all done.

Forever Food

So, in speaking with a friend this morning about the strange goings on in the world today and how to survive should something happen, we got on the subject of sustainable foods. Many of you probablly know this already but, just in case you didn't, here is a list of food that will never expire if kept right. So no need to ever throw these items out no matter how long you have had them. Now this is being eco-concious.

Sugar (even brown sugar. if it gets hard, just heat it up in the microwave and voila! good as new)
Rice (except brown rice. It is has more natural oil in it which makes it go bad after a while)

Of course buying these items organic is better. ;)

For Strange Women

Copyright to For Strange Women
Oh how absolutely lovely that I came accross this via a blog by From The Ash Grove. This is a natural lipbalm made with clove essential oil by For Strange Women. I am so excited to get it. I will post my review later. This lady seems to have the most amazing natural beauty products. Check her out her Etsy store here.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Start of something new

As I was driving from work to pick up Freddy today I was thinking of all the stuff that I do that is eco-friendly and how I can be more so. I have found so many great ideas and am only encouraged more by my BFF. I also realized that I haven't come accross too many eco-friendly goths and even less eco-friendly goth parents/families. Yet, I know that all of us want to save money and I have (in my ventures) come to realize that being eco-friendly is quite easy on the bank account.

So bam! Here comes EcoGothMom. This is all about my ventures in anything and everything eco-friendly that I can experience or experiment with, goth friendly interior design all the while upcycling and recycling, and how all of this affects my parenting and vice versa.

So this is in reality a bit of everything. You will find some eco-friendly stuff, goth stuff, family/household stuff and parenting tips and experiences. I hope to make it is accessible and open as I can.

Have a great night.