The Blog of BumRite Diapers

8/30/2009

"I Want My Poop Back"

I have to digress. This is a blog about my diaper company, after all. I must talk Poop.

This is one of my favorite stories to tell about #1's potty training.

When our #1 son was potty training, we let him run about half naked. We had the privilege of living on a 20 acre vineyard property for the first 3.5 years of #1's life. This made it extremely easy to potty train. Nature was all around us.
In nature, one sees a lot of poop: coyote poop, chicken poop, skunk poop, cow poop, bird poop, deer poop, dog poop, etc. Living on the vineyard was an incredible way to teach about the cycle of life: how delicate the eco-system is, and how naturally balanced it is - unless we humans intrude.


Our dog, Otto, was extremely fond of cat poop. Especially those tiny litter-wrapped delicacies found in the cat box (lovingly referred to as "Almond Roca"). Our family quickly learned that one being's poop, was another being's nourishment. A form of survival, I suppose.

One warm Spring afternoon, son #1 wandered into the front yard and...pooped.

No big deal, I suppose. Dad and I walked outside, trying to hide our amusement, to help him clean up and reinforce the fact that human poop belonged in the toilet. I went inside to get some toilet paper to pick it up and returned to the crime scene in time to see Otto bound up to me, licking his lips.

"What do you have, Otto? DROP IT."

As I looked closer at Otto, he kept licking his lips, like peanut butter (or something incredibly viscous) was slathered all over his mouth. Hmmmm.

Realizing that I was distracted from my original intent to clean up #1's poop, I rolled my eyes at Otto and turned away to scoop up the evidence and transform this moment into a "teachable" one. But where did it go?!

I looked back at Otto, still meticulously licking his lips with his brown-covered pink tongue, got a waft of the smell emanating from his mouth, and gasped. EEEEWWWWwwwwwwww.

Still naked, #1 wanted to know why I was so disgusted? Trying not to laugh (or vomit), I told #1 that dear Otto had eaten his poop. Instead of laughing himself and finding the humor in the situation, #1 got very quiet. His lower lip began to tremble and he stood as still as an egret. I asked him what was wrong and he started to cry and blurted, "I WANT MY POOP BACK! BAD OTTO!".

Dad and I couldn't contain our laughter any longer and erupted in a body-gyrating cacophony of hoots, cackles and wails.

Instead of joining in, #1 started to break down into an all-out tantrum. But Dad and I couldn't turn off the hilarity of the moment and act as mature parents should in this situation to calm the child. We were doubled-over in laughter and almost dropping to the grass.

Eventually, #1 did see the humor in it and had a good laugh.

Last Spring, our dear Otto left us unexpectedly after a quick bout of terminal cancer that caused him to lose 30 pounds in 3 months.

Posting this today is a tribute to Otto AND a reminder to savor the funny moments of potty-training and child-rearing. After all, if you can't laugh, you just might cry.



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8/27/2009

Gone Broody


Have you ever stopped to think about just how many metaphors in our English language stem from our agrarian heritage - namely, raising chickens?
Let me list a few:
  • Fly the Coop
  • All Cooped Up
  • Hotter than a Hen House
  • Old Hen
  • Gobble (in reference to chin #2)
...and "She's Gone Broody..."

I like this last one the most. I can really identify with it. About a month ago, Chaos, the black and white hen went on strike. She stopped "putting out" and retreated to her nest to sit on non-fertile eggs. She only emerged 1 or 2 times a day for a potty break and an occasional snack. She started clucking funny and puffing up her feathers when I opened the door looking for eggs. This must be Chicken Menopause.
My good friend and chicken guru suggested cooling her off in a bucket full of cold water. Didn't work. She went right back to her nest.
I called the local feed store and they suggested tucking some day old chicks under her rear at night to get her out of her broody-stage and start laying again. I did. And she woke up the next morning a MOMMY!!! ("Chicken Brain").

She is a good Mommy. It is a beautiful, natural thing to witness. She teaches her babies how and where to eat, poop, drink, rest, etc. The babies crawl all over her, nuzzle against her warm body and follow her around all day...just like human babies.
She must be so consumed with Mommy-hood that she STILL isn't putting out (may sound familiar to my male readers...).
To make matters worse, Cooper (hen #2) stopped laying yesterday and has ADOPTED the chicks. Now they are clucking, puffed-up, brooding, abstinent...Moms.

This all sounds similar to modern human parenting:
  1. It takes a village.
  2. No roosters required
  3. Babies can make you behave oddly...
I will have to fight the temptation to test the girls' mothering on a screaming 5 month old human baby.

Baaaawk...baaaawk....cheeeep....cheeeep

Happy mothering to ALL you hens.

8/18/2009

Aaahhh - Gray Hair and Age Spots

My skin and hair are changing. Is it the pregnancy hormones? The breastfeeding hormones? Or just plain women-hormones? Lack of sleep? Or is it AGE?!
I just had my 37th birthday this summer.
All those sun-filled days at the beach or on the grass volleyball court without sunscreen could have done it. Who would've thought that Seattle summers could cause so much damage? Those cute freckles across my nose when I was 5 have turned into Age Spots and fine lines. I must invest in some Juice Beauty Green Apple Serum - it's like caulking for my skin. When I used it last Summer (until I ran out) - my skin glowed and those darn "freckles" (I can't admit what they really are) seemed to fade away.
But what to do about the gray hairs?! In my twenties, I highlighted my hair so often that I thought I was a blond. After Baby #1, I didn't have time (or $$$) to continue with my habit. Apparently, I have brown hair. Who knew! But now - after two kids and not dying my hair for 5 years, I can see the gray.
Am I really old enough to have gray hair? It started in this last pregnancy. And as I got fatter, in desperation, I concluded that it was time to get a new haircut. CUT IT OFF! Now with my mom-d0 (i.e. wash and go - look like a boy), I can see the gray. The redeeming thing about the boy hair cut is that it forces me to dress a little more feminine (off with the black stretchy pants) and put on mascara in the morning. That quick ritual actually makes me feel better.
It is what it is. I am wearing, literally, the marks of a mother of young children: dark circles under my puffy eyes, gray hairs, stinky sour milk stains on my shoulders, and...age spots.

Oh the Joys of Motherhood.

Cloth Diapering and the Grandparents

I am learning that my mismatched cloth diaper stash, while perfectly serviceable to me, is a deterrent to getting the grandparents on board with cloth diapering. It is hard enough with their preconceived notions about cloth diapering in general: stinky diaper pails, toilet bowl swishing, pin-pricking pain in the you-know-what. Now they are confused. How do you use the prefolds? What is a Snappi? How much and what to stuff in the pocket diapers (what IS a pocket diaper)?
If I had to do it all over again - I would choose and stick to one method. And if the grandparents were watching the baby a lot, I would go with an AIO or AI2, like the BumGenius Organic or GroBaby system. It would have been a lot cheaper that way!
But I had to try everything - and that is to my customer's benefit.

8/16/2009

HE GETS IT

As I am walking around with my 5 month old in the ERGO, I hear a familiar sound and vibration. Bodie is letting it rip and seems rather pleased with himself. I head to the changing table and realize that the oh-so-slippery and gooey breastmilk poop has squished out of the bottom of the diaper...onto my shirt. Diaper malfunction. I knew I should have double checked to ensure the prefold was tucked into the cover! Yuck. So I put the baby down on the changing pad and begin to take off my clothes. Down to my bra and underwear, the phone rings. I pick up the phone and start to laugh. It is an old friend from Seattle who found me on Linked In and has offered to help with the website logo. Thank goodness for two things: 1) Video conferencing is not automatic 2) He also has young kids and gets it.
Still standing in my skivvies, I clean up the baby, re-diaper and re-dress him. I discuss what I've been up to for the last 8 years. I try to stay focused and channel my former professional self to discuss the logo - but I just can't with a gurgling baby AND a 4 year old playing Garbage Truck with all of his toys upstairs. There is so much that I want to be doing and accomplishing at this moment and I start to feel myself tense with frustration.
I will either laugh or cry. Or tear my hair out. (Gray Hair will be my next post).
Back to the computer with the baby, I strap on the BreastFriend (saviour!) while squeezing the phone to my shoulder and give Bodie a milk-snack so I can finish the conversation. Then he fusses and...burps. My friend just laughs (HE GETS IT!) and we finish the conversation. He will sketch some ideas while on a business trip to Korea and I should have some ideas to review by next week.
Thank goodness I am starting a business that is specifically for babies. It doesn't matter when I talk to vendors, suppliers, logo drafters, website providers, merchant solutions, etc that I have a baby cooing (or crying) in the background. I had both my boys at the CA Board of Equalization when I applied for, and received, my CA Resellers Permit. Both with me at the County Clerk registering my business name. Both at the City applying for my business license. And thank you, Bank of America, for keeping a basket full of lollipops on your counters - it isn't hard to convince my 4 year old to make the trip!
This is a great adventure. I am already enjoying the ride.

The BumRite Diapers BLOG

It started with reading The Diary of Anne Frank when I was 11 years old. I have 20 hand-written diaries locked in a safe in my basement. Now I am taking my musings on-line and semi-scripted to complement my cloth diaper website http://www.bumritediapers.com.

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