Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Diapers & Difficulties

I'm unpacking from my long time away. Between Thanksgiving week and last week I've only spent less than a week at my house. Theodore calls all three houses- our, my in-laws', my parents's- "home" now. A good thing I suppose. You can tell, too, when he walks through those doors compared to any other house, he does indeed feel at home.

While unpacking my mind started to wander. Nothing unusual for me. I've always been a bit of a daydreamed. It's one of my faults. An active imagination. Perhaps it's a boon. I like to think it is. Today my mind drifted like the thin layer of snow that is currently blowing outside my window. I'm on one side of the bed unpacking, looking through my open window across the balcony at the busy bees of snowflakes whizzing by. Right now my mind is wandering to a subject that only a mom would dare contemplate: diapers.

Yes, diapers. That subject that is both taboo and in certain circles even addictive and fun. You see, I knew going in to November that I was about to launch full-steam into a flurry of travel. I'd talked to my mom and my mother-in-law and learned they didn't really want me to use their washing machines as often as I needed to bring a partial stash of cloth with me. My mom didn't want me to bring a full stash or a partial because they have propane, which is very expensive, to run their washer. So I skipped the gDiapers, skipped the Flips, put away the delectably soft FuzziBunz, and drove to Babies R Us where I picked up a large box of Earth's Best Chlorine-Free Diapers. Did you know that most diapers are chock full of all kinds of harsh chemicals, including chlorine? In the past, just using them a few days or hours at a time, I'd found I preferred Earth's Best over other chlorine-free diapers like Seventh Generation or Nature's Babycare. Realizing I needed these diapers waiting for me in Arizona and the nearest place selling them was 1 1/2 hours from my mom's, I got on Amazon and ordered a large case of them so they'd be waiting for me when I arrived. As usual, as a preventative, I also made sure I picked up a big tube of Boudreaux's Butt Paste. That stuff is *good*- usually.

A couple weeks went by. In the middle of the flight I found that, for once, Theodore's pants were totally soaked! I changed him, and hoped that was all. But it wasn't. Not quite 3 hours later, as we were high in the skies between Denver and Arizona, he started fussing and scratching. I looked. His whole bottom looked red! The next several days I tried different creams, airings, even eczema lotions. Nothing helped. I called a local doctor's office and managed to get him in to see a nurse practitioner. His poor red bottom- the butt cheeks too!- were bright red. He'd been scratching and there were scratch marks. I'd had to put him in overalls just to keep him from scratching. She took a quick look at it and said since I'd tried a couple different rash creams and nothing had cleared it, it must be a yeast infection. She gave me a prescription, stating it may be a couple weeks. I didn't think to also change the kind of diaper he was in.

Gradually it seemed to clear up. But then come back. Then his bottom totally cleared. A few days later I saw a new rash, in a different spot- more of the usual rash spot rather than the cheeks of the diaper. I put some cream on it, aired it out twice a day, and went to Target. This time I spent more money. Instead of Earth's Best Chlorine-Free, I picked up hypoallergenic with vitamins A & E and aloe vera Huggies Pure & Natural diapers. Things really seemed to clear up.

Not done yet! Yesterday morning his little butt cheeks were red again. A different look to it though. It almost looks dry? Maybe I'm imagining it. I'm letting him run around without anything on down there since yesterday (except for naps) and slathering lotion on it, hoping that I'm right and it's dry skin. If it doesn't clear up in a couple more days I'm calling his pediatrician. I'm hoping this is the end of the story though. Ugh! At least he's not had a single accident and has used the potty like a dream without missing a beat since yesterday. That's a good sign.

NEVER had rash issues with cloth diapers. Fuzzi Bunz are the best for that! Seriously love my Fuzzi Bunz diapers and am seriously considering getting rid of my BumGenius in favor of them. I love my BumGenius and wouldn't blink an eye at having to use them again. But Fuzzi Bunz are just *so soft* and the sized ones are *so trim*. It's like wearing Mama Cloth vs those itchy normal pads that give *me* rashes/itching each time I use them. In all this, I'd say the Huggies Pure & Natural (not regular Huggies) have been better on his little bottom than the Earth's Best. Earth's Best seemed to do better on him than Seventh Generation or especially than Pampers. If you are interested in only doing disposables:

Pampers Swaddlers OR Tushies for newborns.

Huggies Pure & Natural OR Tushies or Nature's Babycare/Earth's Best (I still recommend them though not as highly) for older.

Skip the regular Huggies, Luvs, Pampers- they're not as gentle.

Can't wait to go back to cloth diapers after this rash clears. Although with the way his pottying is going, it may be only for overnight! Can but hope!

More pies from the 12 pies of Christmas

Oooh, this is a perennial favorite. Spaghetti pie. Boil 6oz noodles. Grate 1/3 c Parmesan and beat 2 eggs. Drain your noddles and mix with the eggs and Parmesan. Press into pie pan forming a crust. Set aside. In a skillet brown 1/2 lb ground beef with 1/2 bell pepper, 1/2 c chopped onion, and at least 2 cloves of minced garlic. Pour in 16oz of pre-made spaghetti sauce, whether jarred from the store or homemade.
Spread 1 c of cottage cheese on the bottom of the "crust". Pour your meat sauce over the cheese. Bake at 350 for about 15-20 minutes, until bubbly. Then top with your favorite white cheese- Parmesan or Mozzarella or Italian blend- and continue baking just until the cheese melts. The sauce will probably be enough for 2 pies, so plan on an extra crust and freeze your second pie!

Preparing to bake the pie crust first. Weighted down with pie weights.

This yummy filling has sugar, eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, butter, and chopped cranberries mixed together.
Very tasty pie. You can find the recipe in The Baker's Dozen Cookbook. It's called Cranberry Chess Pie.
Ice cream pie. Oreo. No, I didn't make it. My sister bought it. I did eat it though- while watching Indiana Jones!

Mmmm! Time to enjoy Shepherd's Pie. 
Chunk some beef roast, coat in flour and brown. Cook in a stew pot in the oven with your favorite vegetables like potatoes, carrots, green beans. Deglaze the pan adding water and Better than Boullion. Bake in the oven and enjoy your pot of stew.
 Next day thicken the remaining broth with flour and make more- thickened-if necessary. Use these leftovers to create your own Shepherd's Pie. Layer remaining beef stew, creamed potatoes, and sharp cheddar. I make my creamed potatoes "Mom's way"- with real butter, natural sour cream, salt, and pepper. Bake all of this in the oven until bubbly and heated through. Serve with fresh baked biscuits and a spinach salad.

Now this is quiche. What a quiche! Highly recommend this recipe. It is really one of the best spinach quiches I've had. My dad absolutely devoured it, and he's a little on the pickier side when it comes to finding a dish he really loves and asks to have it made again. 

Cherry Pie. My husband and sister both declared this to be the best cherry pie they've ever had. My secret: it's simple! Really. "Simple things are best," the saying goes. In this case it appears to be true. Another find.

My favorite lemon meringue pie. I love lemon meringue and strawberry pies personally. To me strawberry is for springtime only, but lemon is perfect any time of year. I've made this pie for years. Can't see changing the recipe any time soon. It's a bit more tart than many lemon meringue pies. When I got back to Tennessee after spending Christmas with my parents in Arizona my mother-in-law immediately asked for me to bake my lemon meringue pie. My husband vetoed it saying that after the 12 pies of Christmas he was tired of pie. But I promised her I'd make it again. 

Finally- apple pie. Again, simple things are best. It's nothing special. Nor was it my favorite pie. I want to find a special apple pie, but this was just fine. Just a typical apples glazed in cinnamon, brown sugar type glaze with a crumb topping on the top. Delicious with or without ice cream!

Wow, did I ever have fun!
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