Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Cloth Diapers and Baby Wearing

Evelyn switched to cloth diapers during the day yesterday. She wears disposables at night because cloth will make them feel when they are wet and wake them up. When she gets to the point of sleeping through the night we will consider converting to all day cloth diapering and only use disposables for trips. I actually think she likes them better. She wouldn't ever let us know she was wet with disposables because they are almost too absorbent. Now, she knows as soon as she needs to be changed. So far, the "hastle" isn't bad at all. I'm washing my first load of cloth diapers today though, so I'll let you know how that goes.

Also, BABYWEARING IS AWESOME! I made a ring sling (google if this confuses you) a while back and we couldn't figure out how to put Evelyn in it because she is so tiny and the sling swallowed her! Thanks to some help from the Green Parenting Board on What To Expect's website, I got some helpful advice from other hippie mommas. Apparently newborns go in backwards from the way pictures show them. Now, she's happily bouncing around the house with me and I'm actually getting stuff done.

Also, started nursing again. I try to nurse for two feedings and bottle fed one to get my body used to nursing again. So far, success! She is still latching (even if it takes some work) and I think we'll get the hang of this!

Next time: My review of "Yoga for Baby", a momma and baby yoga video Parents Magazine makes that Bethany got me and Evelyn and I'm super excited about! Apparently some of the poses help babies with digestion, and I'm rapidly learning how helpful that could be!

Monday, December 28, 2009


Okay, so Evelyn is officially here, and I think that means it's time to go over my goal list and see how we stand! Success will be counted on a scale of 1-5, 1 being FAIL, 2 being BARELY ANY IMPROVEMENT, 3 will be AVERAGE IMPROVEMENT, 4 will be EXCELLENT, and 5 will be SUPER HIPPIE!

Goal #1: Eat Organic, Local grown foods
Score: 4
We definitely buy organic produce, hormone free milk, made in Oklahoma products, and are doing great there. However, I haven't been going to the meat market for organic, hormone free meats as often as I would like, and I may have cooked a few freezer meals right after baby got here thanks to my lack of preparation with regards to cook and freeze before she got here.

Goal #2: No things for baby made by babies
Score: 3
I knew this one was going to be hard, but thanks to www.ecobabyandkids.com and the EcoBaby store on Brookside, I am happy to say that we have a local place to purchase toys, clothes, hygiene products, cloth diapering essentials, etc. that are all made out of organic materials and NOT made in sweat shops! We did pick up a lot of items from Babys R Us and Walmart, but we're hoping that we can finish out infant/toddler time without revisiting those places very often.

Goal #3: Spend more time outdoors
Score: 5
I walked at least a mile everyday until I gave birth and Doc and I have been enjoying more time outside together. Once it warms up enough for Evelyn to go out with us, we will try to do a daily family walk but I have complete faith that my goal of turning outside time into a habit has been achieved!

Now, time to reevaluate and set new goals for our family.

New Goal #1: Compete in a triatholon this spring.
New Goal #2: Race in the hotter n' hell 100 mile bike race in August
New Goal #3: Have family workout time at least 3 days a week once I am declared "recovered"

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Ugh, Breastfeeding

Well, I have met my challenge as a hippie in breastfeeding. My daughter is a "frantic nurser" for about the first 3 minutes, refusing to latch correctly and when she incorrectly latches she sucks like crazy. After 3 minutes or so, she will relax enough to let me get her latched correctly and nurse. After 9 days we've gotten to the point that I am torn up enough that breast feeding is too dang painful, so...

New Plan:

1. Pump and bottle feed with slow release nipples on the bottles for a few days until my own body heals.
2. Once healed, wake baby up/start nursing before she gets very hungry so she doesn't freak out when it's time to eat.
3. Once we are back to breastfeeding from the breast, I'm going to try pumping for a minute or two before I try to latch her so that the "let down" reflex (when milk starts really flowing) kicks in before she starts nursing to limit her frantic behavior with nursing.

I'm hoping that she will go back to the breast once I'm healed and we can fix it and successfully nurse. I'm pretty upset about how hard this has been. We've been struggling every 2 hours for 9 days to get her to nurse well. The only time I remember her letting me latch her right at the beginning of nursing was right after she was born, and it was a wonderful moment for us. I know that in just over two weeks I have to go back to school and she will be bottle-fed breastmilk most of the time, but I'd love to still be able to nurse her every now and then.

P.S. All those "I can't wait to not be pregnant because I can eat X again" thoughts went out the window. I have no interest in eating most of them now.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Homebirth Story

For those interested :) Evelyn Cadie Fowler is here! Here is the story of our home birth. I want to throw in that Doc was amazing! Never once did he lose faith or confidence in me and he showed me nothing but love. Without my amazing spouse I don't think I could have done this.

I woke up at 2:30 AM the morning of December 15th feeling what seemed like heavy menstrual cramps, but they started in my back and slowly moved around. They were coming every 7 minutes or so and were just barely too uncomfortable to sleep through. Doc was sleeping still and I didn't want to wake him up if it was more prelabor or false labor, so I waited an hour to make sure that they were still coming regularly and that they were becoming increasingly intense. At 3:30 I woke him up and he laid with me, beginning to time contractions. They were becoming bad enough that I wasn't a huge fan of talking during them, but between contractions we would joke with each other and share kisses, smiling and anticipating the within-the-day arrival of our baby. Soon I got the hang of managing through contractions pretty well, and Doc went into FULL FLEDGED SUPERDAD NESTING MODE! I have never seen my house so spotless! He did laundry, dishes, cleaned, vaccuumed, all while I rested between contractions and he would come when one started to rub my lower back and help me through them as they grew stronger.

I called my family at 6:30 to let them know that the baby would be arriving today and I was in labor for real now. Doc checked my dialation and I had gone to 2 cm.

Progression + contractions = baby coming :)

We called the midwife just to let her know that I was in labor. She asked for continued updates as things progressed, but it was still going to be a while, so no worries yet.

We called our dogsitter and shipped A.C.E. our dog off to play with his friends around 8 and my contractions had progressed to being only 4 minutes apart. I moved a ton during labor, walking in the hall, leaning over things, using a birth ball, sitting, laying on my side, etc. I ate and drank a little, but found my appetite to increasingly disappear.

By 11:30 they were 2 minutes apart and extremely intense, but I had only dialated to a 4. We called the midwife again and she sent her apprentice out to see us at 2:00pm. The apprentice checked me, watched me for a while and commented "well, you're in real labor. It's odd that a first time mom calls us to say she's in labor and actually is the first time we come out." I went from a 4 to a 6 in 1 hour after that. The contractions were severe enough at this point that I couldn't keep my breathing regular through the entire thing. Soon I started feeling an urge to push. My bag of waters was pushing down hard, giving me an urge to push even though it wasn't time yet and making the contractions more severe.

My midwife arrived and began to set up for the birth. I slowly dialated from a 6 to an 8 and then finally a 10 by 6:00 pm. I had to push to get the rest of my cervix to open up, but cleared my cervix and was ready to push. My water broke with the first pushing contraction.

Pushing was way harder than I anticipated. There was a wall of pain that you had to push through to actually push well enough to cause progress. It was really hard to push when you knew it was going to cause more and more pain until you got to the point that you were pushing correctly. I also was really upset that I didn't get a pain break because between contractions, my midwife would stretch me and that hurt as bad as the contractions did.

2 and a half hours later, Evelyn was trying to crown by my perineum was not going to stretch and budge. She offered to cut an episiotomy and I told her yes before she even finished the sentence. With the next contraction she cut as I pushed. I could feel her cut, but it didn't hurt much compared to everything else I was going through. With the next contraction, I pushed Evelyn through crowning, then through shoulders, and then the rest of her beautiful body slid out. She was placed on my abdomen and immediately looked at me with these beautiful gray eyes. I couldn't believe I got through it. After 18 hours of labor and delivery, I gave birth to my daughter at home in my bed in the loving arms of my husband. She weighted 9 lbs which is why it took me so long pushing, why her head wasn't fitting without help, and why my labor took so long to progress. She is 21 inches long, latches like a pro, and is one healthy little girl according to the pediatrician she saw today.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Just an Update

Well, I'm still trucking along! 3 days until my expected due date and I'm still doing my 1-2 mile walk everyday, exercising regularly, drinking plenty of water, and trying really hard to eat well. Winter just leads to eating lots of heavier foods that aren't necessarily bad for you, but don't help when you are carrying an additional 25 lbs around.

We're hoping to film Evelyn's birth (no crowning shots or anything) to show what homebirth looks like and to have plenty of pictures through out the labor and delivery as well as our first few moments together, so I'll post a few of them on here after Evelyn arrives.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Green For Christmas

Ok, so wrapping paper is beautiful. It's my favorite actually. I love wrapping presents, but every year we throw away TONS of trashbags of wrapping paper. I have decided on an alternative. I'm thinking of a few different options.

#1: Paper sacks: These are recyclable, and if you use pretty ribbon with them, aren't that horrible to look at.

#2: Cloth sacks: Using Christmas fabrics, I can make little festive bags that are different sizes are reusable every year. This would be nice because they are reusable, but I don't want to give gifts to people and ask for the bag back.

#3: Gift bags: I know a lot of people already use these, but I've always been sort of opposed because you still have to use tissue paper. Maybe you could use newspaper instead and recycle it?

Friday, December 4, 2009

Ecobaby is my new heaven :)

Brookside Tulsa. Home to several elitist clothing shops, an expensive grocery, a Starbucks, a Pei Wei, another coffee house, and MY ABSOLUTE FAVORITE NEW STORE EVER!

Check it out at ecobabyandkids.com

The store is called Ecobaby and they carry organicly and American/non-sweat shop produced goods. The clothing is adorable and they have the coolest toys! They have wooden blocks and trains you pull with strings! Also, everything you need for several different cloth diapering systems and several organic and natural products for mom and baby! It's pretty much a big fuzz of hippie heaven.