29 March 2013

{Adventures in Cloth Diapering} The Dreaded Yeast Monster

Kev and I are in love with all things natural. Breastfeeding, Organic foods, baking soda shampoo, apple cider vinegar conditioner, homemade cleaning products and most of all cloth diapering ...just to name a few. Cloth diapering is one of the best decisions I have ever made. They are better for our little one's bottoms, nice on our wallet, friendly on the environment and oh so cute on our babies bottoms. We have been lucky with our adventures in cloth diapering, which we have been doing since Kaydence was born. But lately we have been fighting the hard fight with the dreaded yeast monster. Because of Kameron’s love for all things edible he ran into something that did not agree with his tummy, leaving us with a bad case of diarrhea and now a seemingly endless battle with yeast infections. After weeks of trying to combat this infection naturally to no avail, we finally took our little man to the doctor where he was given a prescription for anti-bacterial cream. In a desperate attempt to rid our family of this pest we temporarily switched Kameron to disposable diapers in order to completely strip and disinfect our entire stash of cloth diapers.

A major reason for Kevin and I choosing to go cloth with our diapers was the fact that we would have a much lower rate of rashes due to the fact that there would be no harsh chemicals on our babies’ bottoms as there are in disposables. We were fortunate enough to not have to deal with any real rashes with Kaydence, and until now we have had no real issues with Kameron as well. We went through an entire pack of disposable diapers, and in that time were able to completely clear up the yeast infection on our little Mr.’s bottom. (Although my heart broke with every diaper I added to landfill. 300-500 years those diapers will be around). I stripped our cloth diapers and cleaned them with oxygenated bleach and we started back into our lovely, much cuter, much softer, less expensive, and environmentally friendly diapers only to have gone 24 hours before the return of the rash. And this is where we are now…

Cloth Diaper Cuteness
Even kittens can't deny the comfort of cloth diapering

So back out to the store I go for another pack of disposables and after much research I have decided to try every method of killing cloth diaper yeast in one go. There is currently a cycle of diapers going with apple cider vinegar  next that they will be washed again with oxygenated bleach, last they will washed with grapefruit seed extract and boiling water. This may seem overkill, but I have read problems with people who only tried one of these methods so I figure I will just do all three. This yeast will go away so I can have my diapers back!

Update soon and any proven advice is welcome!

Until then, enjoy this photo dump of the last few days! Happy Friday!

22 March 2013

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. 

Inspired by: Soulemama

21 March 2013

My Weight Loss Journey {thus far}

:: How I got here ::

Pre-pregnancy I always maintained a comfortable weight of 145-150lbs.  I ate/drank pretty much whatever my little heart desired with no ill effect on my lovely lady lumps.

At the time I found out I was pregnant with baby #1 I was 148lbs. I had somewhat of a difficult pregnancy that landed me on bed rest for most the the third trimester. Due to my lack of exercise and overeating it was no surprise that on the date I was admitted to the hospital to give birth to Kaydence I was a whopping 201lbs. A total weight gain of 53lbs, 18lbs over the recommended 35lb max.

38 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2
10 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #1

At my 6 week postpartum appointment with Kaydence I was down to 188lbs. My weight loss from this point forward was much slower and a lot more difficult due to the nerve damaged in my left leg that occurred from my pregnancy. My leg was numb to pressure, extremely sensitive to pain, weak, and always throbbing after the tiniest amount of physical exertion. I did what I could to work out but my weight loss was slow going and at 10 months postpartum I was only down to 168lbs. Still 20lbs shy of my pre-pregnancy weight. It was at this same time that I found out I was pregnant with baby #2.

I started my 2nd pregnancy already 20lbs over my normal body weight. Then Between my now worsening nerve damage and therefore difficulty working out, plus my inability to resist my pregnancy cravings and keep the fork out of my mouth It was absolutely no surprise when I weighed in at 211lbs on Kameron's birth date.

13 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2
39 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

At my 6 week postpartum appointment with Kameron I weighed in at 191lbs, and never had I felt so disgusted by my own body. I was 43lbs over my pre-pregnancy weight and absolutely determined to lose this weight, nerve damage and all.

Once given the green light to begin an exercise routine on March 1, 2012, I immediately began physical therapy where I spent 8 weeks learning to re-walk and manage the pain in my left leg that would forever accompany me. At this same time I decided to start running and registered for my first half marathon that would take place in June 2012. My running skills were  pathetic to say the least. I could only manage to run for 3 minutes at a time with a 2 minute walk in-between for no more than 30 minutes a day. I was embarrassed and ashamed of what I had become but I knew that with time I could would get better. Just as I am starting to look at the bright side of things I begin to notice a deep burning pain right in the middle of my belly button. 2 ultrasounds, 1 doctor and 1 surgeon later it was confirmed that I had diastasis recti (a separation between the left and right side of the rectus abdomis muscle, which covers the front surface of the belly area) and 2 umbilical hernias (an outward bulging of the abdominal lining or part of the abdominal organs through the area around the belly button).It is now May and my total weight loss from March to this point is 3lbs bringing me to 188lbs.

All of my exercising had come to a halt. I underwent umbilical hernia surgery to repair the holes in my abdominal wall and was told that I would have a harder time loosing my "round" belly because of the diastasis recti which could take years to completely heal. I was advised to wait 6 weeks before I begin running again but because of my stubborn nature and eagerness to run the half marathon I registered for, I only waited 4 weeks before running again. And only 2 short weeks later I started and finished my first half marathon in 30 minutes less than what I anticipated. From July to November I continued my running getting better each day, and began eating healthy and counting my calories. I easily advanced my running from running in intervals to being able to run for 2+ consecutive hours without stopping; and in late November 2012 I started and finished my second half marathon almost 1 hour quicker than my first. My weight loss between July and November was great, and all in all I lost a total of 20lbs bringing me to a weight of 168lbs.

The holidays got the best of me and from December 2012 to February 2013 I pretty much stopped everything I had been doing. I would occasionally run or do a fun 5, 10 or 15k and had completely stopped counting my calories. For this whole 3 months time frame I lost not 1 single pound but I had not gained any either; maintaining a weight of 168lbs the entire time.

Last month I finally put an end to my laziness and decided to take charge of my weight loss again. I began working out a minimum of 5 days a week for at least 60 minutes a day. I have been rotating between outdoor running, the elliptical, walks (with and without the kids), and the Insanity DVD's. I park further away at the grocery stores, always take the stairs, and stay as active as I possibly can. I have changed my eating habits, and have began counting my calories again. And in just 30 days I have lost a total of 5lbs and 2ins from my waist; leaving me currently at 163lbs only 15lbs shy of my pre-baby weight. I feel healthier and I am excited for the results of my hard work.

February 2013 Workouts Completed
March 2013 Workouts Completed (so far)

Pic on Left February 20 ,2013...Pic on Right March 21, 2013
30 Days Difference

Pic on Left February 20 ,2013...Pic on Right March 21, 2013
30 Days Difference

Pic on Left February 20 ,2013...Pic on Right March 21, 2013
30 Days Difference

I still have a loooong way to go until I reach my goals. There are many times on my 7+ mile treks when I wish I could have just been one of the skinny witches who snapped back to 110lbs 3 weeks after delivery with no extra sweat shed. But I am now starting to realize that without having to work as hard as I am I might not know how strong or determined of a person I am. I think that this journey so far has opened my eyes to the possibilities of what I can accomplish with the right mindset and determination. Running has become a passion of mine and I love to do it! None of this has been easy for me but nothing worth having is. My leg aches miserably after each work out and some days it seems as though it is ready to quit only minutes into my exercise. But I put on my big girl undies, keep putting one foot in front of the other and soldier on. One thing I won't do again is quit, because I am so done with starting over!

June 2012 ::1st Half Marathon::
Nov 2012 ::2nd Half Marathon::

December 2012 :: Christmas 10K::
Fun Run

January 2013 ::New Years 15K::
March 2013 ::St. Patrick's Day 5k::

09 March 2013

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Inspired by: Soulemama

07 March 2013

Not a Supermom

Some days I feel like supermom. Days when I am able work out, shower, make a great breakfast, get ahead on homework and even get a load of laundry done all before 9:00am. On these days I am productive, energetic, fun, attentive, creative, patient, and compassionate.

But some days I just don't have it in me. Days when I would rather go through labor again then wake up and run.  When traffic sucks, and I am already late for school.  Days when the laundry is piled high, the dishes are over-flowing, and the kids are testing my nerves. On these days I don't fight the messes, I let the sibling rivalry become learning opportunities of strength and endurance, and choosing cereal for dinner is an easy decision.

I am not a perfect mom; however, I am finally feeling confident in this role. I am learning that being a mom means I will make mistakes. Some days will be harder to get through than others. I am not perfect and I certainly don't pretend to be. I have my fair share of melt downs, tantrums and bad days, and I am beginning to realize this is OK. My children are cared for gently, disciplined regularly, educated daily, loved unconditionally, and never taken for granted. My imperfections are what make me exactly right for them!

And as a side note, I am so in love with everything Kaydence and Kameron are! I am in constant awe of them daily; and I still don't know how I possibly made two human beings so perfect and pure. They are growing and maturing into the most amazing little people. Maybe just a bit to fast for my liking.

Kameron has been on my mind a lot the last few weeks. My sweet little boy is sadly leaving his baby years behind. My heart's not sure what to do about that. I am desperately trying to hold on to the baby he's not; savoring these last moments of babyhood, unsure of if and when I will have them again. He is now becoming his own little person; and the mischief he creates and the semi-naughty things he does, constantly makes me laugh. Why is this type of behavior worrisome and totally not funny with your first child, yet the youngest can almost do no wrong? 

Just please please please never get too big to back up and sit in my lap for story time....Are you listening, little man?