31 August 2008

What do you remember MOST about being a kid?

Ah...kidhood. Running and playing, being home for when the street lights came on, soccer, and playing with the boys. These are all things I remember best about being a kid. All of the aforementioned activities took place outside.

I was barely ever in my room as a child, through the daytime hours, anyway. I would much rather be outside, climbing a tree, building a fort, or playing soccer. From the time I was old enough to be outside unsupervised (around 10 or so?) I had the run of the neighbourhood. I had my core set of friends and activities depended on who was out and about that day.

The kid I hung out with the most was named Chris. He was younger than me, 2 or 3 years, but he was mature for his age *wink* and we got along great, Chris and I. I seemed to get along better with the boys; for the most part, that trend has continued to this day. Chris and I, along with a couple other neighbour boys, would go and explore construction sites, under the railway bridge down by the river, fields near our houses, or set up fort in some remote area. We never tired of playing outside, even in the rain or cold.

Chris was my first boyfriend (I was ten, he was seven). I was a much older woman so I suppose he got a thrill from that. Our dates included playing catch, hide and seek in his parents' basement, and tree climbing. That tree in his backyard gave me a scar on my lower left calf that is still visible today, if you know where to look.

I shake my head now, when I think of all of the childhood memories kids these days are missing out on. I don't imagine that it's very exciting to have video gaming to be your only memory. No tree climbing, no fort-building, no running alongside rushing freight trains, screaming at the top of your lungs...

I miss being a kid. Wanna go outside?

30 August 2008

Catching Pee, the EC Way

Last night we went to an Elimination Communication (EC) discussion at a coffee social where a woman talked about the lifestyle of using EC with your infant. I say it is a lifestyle, because it is.

For those who have never heard of ECing, it's basically early toilet training for babies. But instead of teaching your child to eliminate into a diaper as an infant and then trying to retrain them to be aware of their body functions when they become toddlers, you skip the diaper part. Essentially, when your child is too small to sit on a pot, you hold them over it. Usually you watch for cues (silence, face scrunching up, a noise, etc) while the baby is naked and on a waterproof mat or something. Then you see them pee or poop, and you mark down times, trends, etc. For example, I know Delilah will have to pee when she wakes up from a nap, and about 15 minutes after nursing. So I hold her over a big bowl for a minute or two. Today we started. I caught two pees in a row!!!

Some people might think it's ridiculous. Some people might not believe it's possible, but what do you think people in non-industrialized societies do? They certainly don't use disposable diapers (ick), and when a society has no water to drink, they definitely don't have the water with which to wash cloth diapers. So they pay attention to their babies, and provide opportunities to relieve themselves which doesn't involve sitting in their own waste. People in these countries think WE'RE crazy for using diapers. Then again, these people carry their babies during the day. They also co-sleep (have family beds or two beds in one room) and are aghast when told that (most) North American families put the most vulnerable member of their family into a crib in a room all alone all night long. They wouldn't dream of abandoning their children every night. Neither do I.

When you think about it, more and more kids go later and later these days before being potty trained. The reason? Larger sized disposable diapers. Yes, I'm talking about pull-ups or those night-time underwear things they advertise. Seriously. "oh, don't worry about those sleepovers, just put your kid in a diaper and they won't be embarrassed." Yeah right. Back in the day before they had larger sized diapers kids were potty trained by one year of age. Who benefits these days from the kids going longer before being trained? Certainly not the kids. Not the parents. The diaper companies sure are raking the cashola in though, huh? Same for formula makers, but I won't get started on that one.

Back on the topic of ECing, the benefits are great. My baby doesn't UNlearn to recognize her own body signals and elimination control, she doesn't have to sit in soiled diapers, and she'll never have to experience the whole "well, last week it was ok to poop and pee in your diaper but this week we're potty training and if you pee or poop anywhere than in the potty it's DIRTY" shame some parents place on their kids when trying to unlearn them from using their clothes as a toilet. (sorry for the huge sentence!) For me, it means less laundry, a smaller bag when we have to go out, and less cost incurred with buying new cloth diapers. It will give me a closer relationship with my baby, as I'll be watching her for cues and signals, and eventually will be able to intuit when she has to go. The only downside, which may not even be much of one, is the time involved. As I indicated before, it's a lifestyle, and it will require a lot of time committed if it's going to work. I'll need to watch her constantly for the next while, learning her cues, and seeing if there are trends. I'm sure I'll catch the odd pee in her pot, but poops will be more difficult, as she's not one of those babies who goes every time she eats. I've started a journal to document our progress. It will be interesting to look back in a year and see what has happened. I'll keep everyone posted on our progress.

26 August 2008

Just Another Day

Just another day, that's how today feels, although I feel as if it should MEAN something. Today is my birthday: another year on this planet, another circle around the sun. I've managed to get more than halfway through the day without anyone giving me a birthday greeting or gift. It's kind of strange, actually.

Out of curiosity I looked up FamousBirthdays.com and realized I share a birthday with Mother Teresa. Those are some big shoes to fill (metaphorically speaking, as I'm sure she had tiny feet). I'm aware of the controversial issues surrounding her work, but still, she did good things.

Thirty-one years. To a 13 year old, I seem ancient. I remember when I was 13 and I thought to myself that I couldn't imagine being 30, let alone 31. I imagined that, since I couldn't picture myself being 30, that meant I would die before I reached that age. Now I understand it is just one's lack of imagination, having never been that old, that prevented me from being able to picture it. It's the same, I suppose, as me, today, not being able to picture myself being 60. But hopefully I will-and gods willing I'll be happy and healthy.

Happy Birthday to all of the virgos out there, and Happy Unbirthday to everyone else.

24 August 2008

Wine, Pearsauce, and Green Blogs

I've just put my first attempt of "wine by the bottle" on top of my fridge. A can of concentrated fruit juice (I'm trying Fruitopia Strawberry Passion Awareness) in a 1.5L wine bottle, topped with water, and some sherry yeast all mixed together is the recipe. I've a balloon over the opening and will prick it when it inflates, which will act as an airlock of sorts. The directions I've received are to let the bottle sit for 5 or 6 days. We'll see if it works. If it does, great. If not, I'm out a can of juice and a bit of yeast, no biggie.

As for other activities today, I've made some pearsauce (made exactly the same as applesauce) with some very ripe local pears. Peel them, core them, chop them and put them into a saucepan with a little water and cook until soft. Mash them up, add some cinnamon, and jar. Voila! It will be tasty good with some pork tenderloin.

I've been trolling the web looking for some "green" blogs, looking for ideas to help myself and my family become more ecologically responsible. I've found "No Impact Man", found at http://noimpactman.typepad.com/blog/ who writes about his family's one-year project to become zero impact by cutting off their hydro, eschewing motor vehicle transportation, composting their waste (sewage and otherwise), volunteering with tree planting, park cleanups, and on and on. I greatly admire his..fortitude... in attempting this and will buy his book when it is released. I also came across "Crunchy Domestic Goddess" (CDG), found at http://crunchydomesticgoddess.com. I've joined in an initiative of reducing my water consumption, started by CDG, as indicated by the button in my left sidebar. We all need to reduce the water we use. As CDG has in her 5 Minute Shower blog, “If you think we have bad fights over oil, just wait until we start fighting over water!” . Man oh man. Scary stuff. Makes me think about how WE can be more green. Simply giving lip service to the notion isn't enough. Don't talk, ACT!

22 August 2008

The Mormons Are Coming!

I've just had a visit by two young men who have come to spread the word of Joseph Smith, aka The Book of Mormon. Initially I thought to shut them down and turn them away, but then I thought, "hmm, I don't know much about the Church of Mormon, this could be a learning experience." So I now am the proud owner of "The Book of Mormon", complete with highlighted passages selected by Elder Shields for me to focus on. They will be emailing me in about a month in order to set a date when they can come back and speak to me about what I've read.
I think it will be an interesting appointment, to say the least.
Now, to get reading...

Halloween Approaches

Halloween (not to be confused with Samhain), next to Yule, is my most favourite time of year. I love the decorations, the spooky music, the costumes. I've always dressed up for Halloween, even if it was just to hand candy out at my door. Two years ago I took my landlord's 12 year-old daughter Holly and we went out trick or treating. (Nevermind that I was 29 years old!) We ended up with 2 grocery bags full of loot. What fun!

We're in a townhouse community now, with lots of kids in the neighbourhood. Last year we were in an apartment building and didn't hand out any candy so went instead to a drag show of The Wizard of Oz complete with a drag queen impersonation of Cher put on by our building's superintendents. That was pretty...interesting.

This year the emphasis, I'm sure, will be on Delilah. She'll be 5 months old! I've started looking at patterns online, trying to find the perfect costume. I don't want it to be the typical tiny baby costume like a lion or butterfly. I want it to be AMAZING, yet easy to make. I have an idea...it involves autumn leaves and a glue gun, but I think maybe that idea is better saved for when she's a bit bigger...like next year. For now I've got to think of one that will be comfortable for her, warm, and easy to put on. Ideas, anyone?

21 August 2008

Keep Your Hands Off My Baby!

I've had to lay down a new rule: Keep Your Hands Off My Baby! Two evenings ago, a neighbour and I, with Delilah in Snugli, were at the neighbourhood convenience store, where we ran into yet another neighbour ,"A", with her little girl, "H". "A" immediately had her hands on Delilah's face, as most of the neighbours are wont to do. Directly following this hands-on greeting, I learned that "H" has been ill, coughing and sneezing and the like. I immediately retreated to the other side of the store away from further contagion, but "A" came back over to me when it was time to check out and made to touch Delilah's face again. "Don't TOUCH her", said I, and was given a dumb-cow look and questioned, with the reasoning, "I'm not sick"...I directly challenged the lack of intelligence in that statement by insisiting that, if not sick, she's definitely a carrier.

Fast forward 16 or so hours. Delilah began coughing and sneezing mid afternoon yesterday and had a bit of an elevated temperature. I was mildly concerned and hoped the antibodies in my milk would kick the germ-invader's butt. I think she IS resisting the bug, but all last night she was restless and would go bouts of congestion which would prevent her from breathing easily. I was awake for a stretch of about 4 hours, where she would stop breathing for a second then cough and sputter, trying to clear her nasal passages. She settled down around 5 AM or so, seeimingly comfortable. Every little sound she made woke me. Needless to say, she's tired, I'm tired, and I hope she kicks this thing soon. I'm not looking forward to another night spent awake, fretting over my daughter.

Which brings me around to the topic of today's post: Keep Your (disgusting, dirty, germ-infested) Hands Off My Baby! You don't go around touching random adults' faces, you wouldn't consider touching ME without permission, so why do you think touching my child is acceptable? I admit, I am partly responsible for allowing it in the first place, but no more! Future attempts will be thwarted and the evil-doers will be reprimanded!

19 August 2008


Hi everyone, I've created this blog as a spin-off to my original Berry Berry Quite Contrary blog, with a matching url. This blog will take the place of the first one, but you'll still be able to view the old posts on the original. Come here to read what's going on with Berry and Delilah and Ben!
Feel free to comment on any posts and ask questions.

My Weightloss Progress