I swear every day is a new toy recall regarding lead. Toys R Us has recalled another toy coloring set because of lead concerns. Fisher Price recalled too many to mention. I’m not an alarmist but this has me alarmed. I’ve started researching “green” or natural toys as an alternative. I’m no tree-hugger but this is ridiculous. We all know babies put everything in their mouths and I quite simply don’t want to take the chance anymore. I’d rather pay more money for fewer toys I know to be safe rather than having a toxic Big Bird end up in her mouth. It’s just not worth it. And shame on Fisher Price and others for forsaking our childrens’ safety for a cheaper made-in-China product with no apparent oversight. Who is manning the store around there???? Check out this article from Savannah Morning News for some good alternatives.
Parenting Dictated August 20, 2007
While at the aforementioned birthday shindig, I was speaking to another mother of a child the same age as Grace. She said she was dreading the 12 month appointment because “I know the dr. will say he should be on one nap by now and he’s still on two and I don’t know what to do” etc. etc. I felt so bad for her and I realized, we’ve all been there. The guilt and feelings of failure about what you SHOULD be doing and how you SHOULD be parenting and if your child isn’t feeding himself while signing his requests to you while at the same time expressing interest in toilet training than you’re just a loser mom who is raising an idiot.
That’s how it feels sometimes when you read too many books, you have too many people giving you (usually unsolicited) advice, and you put too much pressure on yourself to be the perfect parent. I’ve realized I’m not the perfect parent. If Grace makes it through the day unscathed I consider it a victory. She’s a year old now and still taking two naps, won’t take a sippy cup and still uses her pacifier. So I’m pretty much a loser mom by most books accounts. That’s why I don’t read them anymore unless there’s a specific topic I’m looking for answers to. Even then, I try to keep it brief.
When I am looking for “real world” info, I check out Ask Moxie, a great blog for real-life parenting. If you’re hyper-scheduled and anal retentive, this won’t be for you. Moxie goes with the flow. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge fan of schedules (lest you think I’m a fly by the seat of your pants kind of mom) and Grace is on a tight one. Except when she isn’t….Like now when she’s teething. Screw the schedule, she needs cuddles. The schedule can wait.
Yesterday the whole fam dam attended a birthday party for a friend (Grace’s friend turning one). Most of the kids there were around the one year mark and it was absolutely fascinating to watch the interaction of the children and the parents. I encountered one species for the first time—the overly cautious dad. Clearly OCD had never attended a playgroup before (or a playground). His eyes were as big as saucers as he said “this is chaos!!!” and commented about an extremely well-behaved 3 year old “wow, she has a LOT of energy, doesn’t she?” Now, this was the most well-behaved group of little peanuts I’d ever seen and the three year old is a delight. I just don’t think OCD has seen children interact as a group. I began to feel bad for OCD, so clearly clueless about what lies ahead. He cringed when other babies got near his, he spent the entire time shielding her and moving her from perceived danger, and he generally looked like he needed a stiff drink, or a Valium. I hope OCD learns to take it in stride, that his daughter will not “break” and that she will have a good time, if he just lets her.
Teeth, Teeth Go Away. August 15, 2007
Poor Gracie is teething like a maniac right now. I can see the numerous whitecaps right under the gums and I think we’re getting the dreaded molars. I’m always looking for remedies and here’s what I have found “works” so far. Keep in mind nothing works completely except those darn teeth breaking through the gums.
Hyland’s Teething Tablets (homeopathic) work pretty well but lately we’ve had to step it up to Infant Motrin. Another idea is putting the pacifier in the freezer (it won’t get too hard). I’ve also found a great remedy which is this little baggie thing from Munchkin. It’s called a Fresh Food Feeder, the idea being you put solids in the bag and they can chew without choking. I’ve found putting an ice cube in there really helps the teething. Just keep going to the freezer and repeating until the Motrin kicks in…
You can find all this wonderful stuff at Drugstore.com
Pacifier Controversy–How Old Is Too Old? August 14, 2007
When this pic was published a while back, many were up in arms about Ryder’s binky. They said he was 2 or 3 and waaaay too old for a pacifier. I agree that 2-3 is pushing it but when do you think they should go? I encountered a poor daycare workers struggling with a child who looked like she’d been crying for a week straight because “the parents want the pacifier gone, cold turkey.” The poor baby was probably only 8 months old and now the lucky daycare workers get to deal with the aftermath. How much you want to bet the baby gets it at night when the parents are around??? I’m just saying.
Grace initially had no pacifier and then it was suggested by the lactation consultants that it would help her suck reflex. We’ve been on the binky ever since. Regular latex Binky, not orthodontic thank you very much. I’m just excited that she seemed to take the orthodontic one today. That’s progress over here. She really only uses them to sleep. I’m not going to get all jacked up about it like some people do “you MUST wean at age (fill in the blank).” I’ve never seen a child attending college with a binky so I’m pretty sure she’ll be able to give it up.
I have to admit, I’m a snob about certain products and I just won’t go generic. These include paper products (paper towels, toilet paper and baby wipes). These work so well that I just can’t deviate. They are silky soft and like cloth. But I really love them for their myriad of uses (wipe the counter, the car seats, the high chair, take off my makeup, wash my hands, etc.) These things do it all…except for flush. I made the stupid mistake of flushing a few too many down our toilet today. This ended up with poo water all over our master bath. I can’t relive it, it was horrifying. It’s finally under control but please DON’T FLUSH THESE BABIES!
We decided that it would be a fun idea to take Grace on a little trip to the beach. We rented a condo and packed up the pack in play, brought her favorite items and were off. But things didn’t exactly go as planned…Our superstar sleeper absolutely refused to sleep at night. The daytime naps were fine but nighttime…no way. Nothing would soothe her, not even being in our room. She couldn’t sleep with us because she’s too much of a squirmer and ended up trying to climb up the headboard. Eventually we took turns staying with her in the main room and sleeping on the couch. We even kept the TV on. She still woke up every few hours. It was painful. Almost like when she was a newborn. We cut the trip short for our sanity and last night (her first night home) she slept like a rock. And she’s still sleeping with no signs of stopping. I’m not sure if it was the perfect storm of teething, unfamiliar surroundings, her age (12 months), or what. Lessons learned: get a bigger place with no common walls. She knew we couldn’t let her cry because of the poor neighbors and I swear she played on that. Other than that, I’m not really sure what could have been done better. Any ideas???