It seems that going from one to two children can rank among the most challenging transitions that many families will ever face. For Annabelle’s sake, as well as our own, we’re trying to prepare in a number of different ways and I’ll be sharing those with you as we go along in an informal series I’ll call Preparing for a Second Child. Continue reading
Welcome to the First Annual Freedom of Cloth Carnival
This post was written for inclusion in the Freedom of Cloth Carnival hosted at Natural Parents Network by Melissa of The New Mommy Files and Shannon of The Artful Mama. This year’s carnival will run from Sunday, July 3rd through Saturday, July 9th. Participants are sharing everything they know and love about cloth diapering, including how cloth has inspired them.
|Photo Credit: Ray King
Used by Creative Commons License
I have been on a journey to be kinder and gentler to the environment since long before my daughter was born, but her birth and the decision to cloth diaper definitely gave me the extra push I needed to take that journey more seriously. I knew from the start that I would use cloth in combination with elimination communication, but as I researched my options and learned how easy it was to use cloth, I took things a bit further.
Natural Parents Network for the most up-to-date news on the Freedom of Cloth Carnival!
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants on the following themes. Articles will go live on the scheduled theme day:
- Sunday, July 3rd, 2011: Cloth Related Recipes — Writers share their best cloth-related recipes and tutorials.
- Monday, July 4th, 2011: Choosing Your Cloth Style — Today’s posts discuss parents’ individual journeys to finding the cloth diapering “style” that best suits their families.
- Tuesday, July 5th, 2011: Cloth Diapering Must Haves — Parents talk about the most important items in their diapering “stash” and why they love them.
- Wednesday, July 6th, 2011: Wordless Wednesday, Inspired by Cloth — We asked parents to share their favorite cloth-related photo with us and turned them into a fluffy Wordless Wednesday photo montage on Natural Parents Network. Link up your own Wordless Wednesday post there!
- Thursday, July 7th, 2011: Cloth Through the Stages: From Infancy to Potty Independence — Today’s participants explain how cloth diapering has served their families throughout one or more stages of their children’s lives.
- Friday, July 8th, 2011: Cloth Troubleshooting and Laundry Day — Seasoned cloth diapering parents share their best tips and tricks for handling common cloth problems and tackling the diaper laundry.
- Saturday, July 9th, 2011: Inspired by Cloth — For today’s theme, we’ve asked writers to explore the ways cloth diapering has inspired them to become “greener” overall.
Things are downright crazy around here, but mostly in a very good way. I wasn’t able to post on what’s new last week due to some blogger issues, so I have loads to say about the girl, but I also have loads of sleep to catch up on, so I’ll try to keep it simple.
First, a winner. Remember how my blog turned one, and I decided I wanted to buy a special present for one of you lovelies as thanks for a year of support? Well, the time has come. I went ahead and counted everyone who commented, not sure who was wanting to enter and who wasn’t, and the winner is: tinsenpup. I guess the next step is to ask her if she actually wanted to win. If not, I’ll be getting with the next in line soon. Thanks again to all of you for being so wonderful.
I was reading this week about the illusion of permanence, and the reality that everything is continually changing, continually flowing, despite our perception. Often something appears to be the same as it was when last we looked at, but in reality, it has changed. As the parent of a toddler, this is a very easy concept for me to understand.
Annabelle looks like the same child from moment to moment, but with every experience, every interaction, every breath, she is changing.
The most noticeable recent change has been in her ability to communicate, which has increased by leaps and bounds. I now find myself having full on conversations with her through context, signs, and her minimal-but-ever-increasing vocabulary.
I’ll share with you one such conversation:
In the kitchen, Annabelle is standing on a stool and I am holding a brick of tempeh. She decides she would like down and begins grunting to get my attention. I say, “It looks like you’re ready to get down. If you want me to help you, you can say, ‘help, mama.’” She says, in her squeaky, singsong-y, perfect toddler voice: “help.” I walk over to help her and she begins signing “cracker.” I say, “Oh, would you like a cracker?” “Yeah!” “Okay, I’ll help you down and we can get you a cracker.” I take her off the stool and go to the pantry for a cracker. She becomes frustrated and refuses the snack. “Hm. I thought you wanted a cracker.” (Pointing) “Cracker!” “Ah! Does this tempeh look like a cracker?” “Yeah!” “I need to crumble this tempeh. Would you like to help me?” “Yeah!”
We sit down at Annabelle’s table with a bowl to crumble the tempeh in to. I break off a corner and ask her if she’d like to try it. She shoves it into her mouth at the same time that we hear the sound of an airplane overhead. She gasps and points upward, as is her custom, and I say, “Do you hear the airplane? I hear that airplane, too!” She begins simultaneously chewing her tempeh and signing “more.” I say, “I’ll give you some more as soon as you finish what’s in your mouth.” Her mouth is so full that she can hardly chew, but again she signs, “more!” “Eat what’s in your mouth, babe.” Again, she signs “more,” but this time points upward right afterward, then signs it again. “Ohhh, you want to hear more airplanes!” “Yeaaaah!”
It’s a good thing she’s becoming so communicative, because she is also increasingly adamant about having what she wants. She erupted into cries and screams at bedtime earlier this week because she was flipping through her farm book and couldn’t find the page with the picture of a donkey on it.
Several new teeth, including one molar, now adorn Annabelle’s Cheshire cat-like grin. Speaking of cats, she has grown incredibly fond of them in recent weeks. She adores all from afar, but tenses up when a large one comes near. Kittens, however, get just as much hands-on love from her as do her friends. Speaking of friends, Annabelle has invented her own sign for “Hunter” and she does it nearly every time we get in the car, hoping we’re on our way to visit her bestie.
When I stop to reflect, I always see just how much she has changed, but I seldom stop to realize that Annabelle is changing even as I look on. A good reason to watch closely, I suppose.