Thursday, February 28, 2013

Homemade Diaper Rash Cream

This is day two of great homemade baby products that new moms should use. I do not have a newborn of my own, but I have worked in a classroom with 20+ different infants and have known other moms with children, so I do bring some amount of real-life experience with these ideas.

The ingredients are simple: Aquaphor and liquid Maalox (NOT mint)

I would make up small batches at a time, because yes, I know Aquaphor isn't the cheapest product in the earth-so you won't want to mix all of it with Maalox if you don't have to!

I have a theory (perhaps others do, but I haven't researched what other people say about it). I think that the Maalox helps because it is an antacid, so when the child has a dirty diaper this diaper cream isn't just a barrier between the child's sore bum and the soiled/wet diaper, but it both protects (the aquaphor) and defends (the maalox).

The best type of container you will need is a tiny plastic Tupperware container.

Side note for parents that wish to use this in a child care setting: depending upon your state family services department you might need a written physician's note stating that this mixture is to be used on your child. Then, since you are making it and it doesn't have an official container, you would be required to clearly mark on the outside of the container the ingredients and you child's first and last name. Being on the teacher end of this, I know it is a pain but we would be in major trouble without these steps in the state of Ohio.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Homemade Natural Baby Wipes

Baby rashes came up the other day in conversation and it reminded me of two homemade products I have seen have great success with infants in my past: homemade baby wipes and homemade diaper rash cream (tomorrow's post).

There is always a reason for purchasing pre-made wipes (on the go, convenience, and the amount of time before they go bad) but for wet diapers or easy to clean dirty diapers, these homemade wipes might just do the trick and a bit less harshly!

The ingredients needed are:
Zip Lock bag (gallon), or a plastic container with sealed lid
1 roll of Paper towels
2 tbs. Baby oil
4 tbs. Baby Shampoo
4 1/2 cups Water
Optional: Pure oils (lavender, melaleuca, etc)
Optional: vitamin e from capsules popped open

I typically choose an organic unbleached fiber paper towel, Johnson's baby oil, Johnson's Lavender baby shampoo, and filtered or bottled water.

To make the wipes I separate the paper towels then cut the separated towels in half. Some people cut the towels on the roll with scissors because it is faster, and you can pull from the middle and it self dispenses.

Heat the water to "hot" before adding the oil and shampoo. Mix all ingredients together then pour into the ziplock bag with paper towels. It will take a little while, but the water mixture will be absorbed into all the wipes.

I recommend not making more than you will use in half a week to prevent them from getting moldy. Just remember to adjust the recipe for the amount of towels you are making (half the recipe if you cut your roll in two). Leaving the wipes in a hot car or any other warm area will make them spoil faster (or just dry out).

These wipes have no alcohol or chlorine in them so you can keep that off your baby! Just remember: the reason alcohol is put in baby wipes is so the moisture will evaporate and keep them dry after their change. So be sure to let their skin dry off to avoid moisture that could cause yeast growth or other irritations. The other chemicals such as chlorine are added so the wipes do not mold, so think short term with making your own!

This idea can be a money saver, but if you have to throw out molded wipes it will cost you more than store bought wipes! You might need to experiment with what brand paper towels are strong enough, soft enough, etc. for you and your family's needs.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Friendships that Last a Lifetime

There are some friendships that are circumstantial, there are some friendships that are forced by our parents at a young age, and there are friendships that we happen upon in life and they have the hold to last a lifetime.

I think it is safe to say that many friendships tend to wane and wax throughout our young adulthood as we go through this stage at our own pace. It is easy to be in completely separate worlds from being single, to engaged, to married, to having children, some divorce, some move for college or jobs, and some change because of a career. The three of us became friends early in high school, and have kept in contact throughout the last 12+ years (obviously, since we share a blog together!).

Something AMAZING happened today...the three of us were all in the same place at the same time today! We only had a few hours together since we all have "grown up" lives, but we so enjoyed ourselves.

We found it amazing to think back 12+ years since it doesn't seem like so long ago. We are the same people, just more has happened since we last saw each other. Also, we agreed that our conversations have drastically changed.

Some of our discussion topics included:
-Viva vs. Bounty paper towels
-How to cook breaded chicken in the oven without it getting soggy or sticking to the bottom
-How our mothers have changed as we have grown (we figure that most likely our moms haven't really changed, but that we finally see them from a new "grown up" perspective!)
-And as most women do, we discussed our husbands

The moral of this post is that sometimes we do not know who will be our "lifetime" friends, but likely it is someone you have shared a very close past with. Someday, we might all be sitting in rocking chairs on our front porch discussing the good old days. But more than likely, we will be like the older folks of Betty White's prank show out causing trouble!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Dark Skies Parent Movie Review

*Warning-This review will disclose some spoilers to the movie, but will try as hard as possible as to not share more than necessary for parents to determine if the movie is appropriate for their children!

This weekend I saw Dark Skies. I did not find any parent movie reviews on my quick internet search before I went-I only found professional reviews and I didn't want to spoil the movie for myself and still chance not being given any useful parenting information.

Here are a list of the most important aspects of the movie for parents to consider:
-The official rating for the movie is PG-13
-The mother in the movie makes reference to another couple's "open marriage"
-Minor use of profanity throughout (not the f word)
-Father purchases a gun for protection
-Discussion of parental physical abuse on the children (children's services mentioned)
*A television in a home shows the beginning of a pornographic film. The theme is a teacher and an adult student, the teacher touches the [adult] student's breast both are fully clothed. The movie is on a second time later in the movie and you only hear the t.v. from the hall, but hear loud and intimate moaning.
*The teenage son mimics the film and touches a classmate's breast
-Quick kiss on the lips between teen boy and girl
-Teenage son defies his parents and hangs out unsupervised with a girl and broke in to an empty house
-The parents begin to get intimate in their bed briefly, no nudity, but actions implied

As far as the scary factor:
-Aliens entering the home
-Aliens abducting children
-People blacking out and losing chunks of time from their memory
-Image of the small child missing his eyes

These are my notes from the best of my memory, my review is with best intentions of an accurate report. Parents must determine for themselves what they feel is age appropriate for their child.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Quick Fact: Keep that drink glass from picking up your napkin!

When you go out to eat does the condensation from your glass cause the napkin to stick to the bottom of it? Here is a neat tip to keep that from happening!

Sprinkle a little salt on the napkin!
Yup that is all, and it works every time the whole time!

Why does it work?

Water has a high surface tension. It's like when you fill up a glass, you can fill it slightly higher than the rim - it sort of bubbles over. It's also what causes bubbles to form (whereas more viscous liquids like oil tend to flow more smoothly).

Surface tension in water is due to the fact that water is a dipole. The electrons are slightly off-balance in each molecule, causing the water to "stick together" by arranging itself in a magnetically attractive fashion. This is also why water crystallizes.

The "sticking together" is what causes the napkin, coaster, or whatever to stick to the glass or bottle.

Salt is an ionic compound. When dissolved, it introduces positive and negative ions into the water. This essentially dissipates much the surface tension. That stops it from sticking as easily. There you have it.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Dr. Suess Party

Exactly one week from today is Dr. Suess' birthday (March 2nd) and what better way to celebrate than with a party?! (Click pics to get how-to info)






Thank You Notes:

Send a card with a picture of your guests! 

Friday, February 22, 2013

Keep Yourself Social

During February it is easy for people to only do the basic essentials and not leave their homes for much other than work and getting groceries. The problem only worsens for those who do not work and are somewhat secluded from others on a daily basis. I have recently been home for three weeks straight and the first two weeks were wonderful and full of years of needed rest from a very busy life. It didn't take much time at all before the monotony of being home with no other people has started to get to me. I am finding that I could easily become a hidden member of society if I do not specifically set out to keep myself active!

So, the following are so ideas and tips on keeping yourself sane and active with others during the winter and any time of the year

#1: Visits to Old Friends
The first place to start for me is my cell phone. I go through my contact book from start to finish and look at all the people that I haven't spoken to or spent time with in a while. I make a list and set out to communicate with them by facebook, text message, or phone call.

 After talking with them, it is often much easier than you would think to set up a time to get together-especially if you are home not doing much else. Don't be afraid to be a little pushy because it shows you are serious about wanting to spend time together. Once you spend time with someone and have a good time, somehow it becomes easier to schedule time together or plan outings with one another.

#2: Make a list of Things you have Wanted to Do
This sounds a little silly, but really think. Is there a project or activity at one point in the past when you were too busy that you wished you had time to do? For me, when I was working 50+ hours a week I had always wanted to have my house decorated for each of the holidays and seasons. I never brought myself to take the hour to take down the last decor and replace it with the next set. Now that I have organized my decorations by holiday, the time it takes to put out decorations is very little and I enjoy it for up to a month before changing it.

#3: Service or Community Projects 
This is such a great category of possibilities. Not only can you spend time with other people, you will be able to help and give back to your community. The other perk-you can find activities that take an hour, a day, a week, or an on-going project. There are so many possibilities. Some organizations collect the Campbell's labels for education-and behind the scenes a tedious job of cutting the points to the dotted line gets done (and points counted). Or, help work at a food bank stocking shelves with donations or one of many other projects that are done in your local community.

#4: Help a Neighbor or Family Member
For those who are fortunate enough to live near their family, you can offer to help out a busy mom or elderly family member. Depending upon their need you can help them with food preparation, laundry, yard work, watching their children, or any number of tasks that would be a great help to them.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Winter Reading List

Winter is a great time to stay indoors by the fire and cuddle up with a good book! Here is a list of some of my personal favorites!

For Adults

Science Fiction

The Coldfire Trilogy by C.S. Friedman


The Princess Bride by William Goldman (even better than the movie!)

Historical Fiction

Speaks the Night bird by Robert McCammon


The Red Headed League by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle


ScreamFree Marriage and ScreamFree Parenting by Hal Edward Runkle

For Teens

Science Fiction

Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card


 Dragon's Bait by Vivian Vande Velde

Historical Fiction

Wolf by the Ears by Ann Rinaldi


The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R King


Body Fueling by Robin Landis

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