Wednesday, August 15, 2012

My New Job

After the last post, I figured it was my turn to write something a little more light and fun! So get ready for some details of my life as a mommy to the sweetest 11 week-old boy in the world. Has it really already been 11 weeks?!

Knox at 1 month old 
Knox FINALLY arrived on May 28, 2012, and our life has changed drastically...for the better. We can’t imagine our life without him now. Billy was able to stay home for 2 weeks or so which really helped us figure out this parenting-a-newborn thing. We watched MANY movies on Netflix while I figured out how to breastfeed, and Billy became a PRO at changing poop diapers. We were so very blessed to have dinner brought to us by our River Stone family for most days of the first month we were home. I don’t know how anyone brings home an infant and manages cooking/cleaning at the same time! We were pretty spoiled. However, our house DID look like that of a family with a new baby.  I swear it took weeks for me to find places for things and clear clutter off the coffee table. Things finally started to calm down once Billy went back to work, we overcame engorgement and pre-mastitis, I was able to start working out again, and Knox SORTA KINDA figured out the difference between nighttime and daytime. Oh yeah, and we had to start making dinner again...bummer!

When Knox was around 3 weeks old, we decided to take the plunge into the world of CLOTH DIAPERS!!! We had planned to use them all along, but wanted to wait for Knox to get the meconium out of his system and grow into our one-sized diapers a little better. So many people have asked me about cloth diapers and our routine, so I figured now was as good a time as ever to share!

2 month old Knox rocking his BumGenius dipey.
Why we chose to use cloth diapers: Despite many opinions, we did NOT choose the cloth route just to make our lives more difficult or to appear more natural/granola/crunchy/hippy/San Martian/fill-in-the-blank. We mainly wanted to save money in the long run. Since the diapers we chose were one-size-fits-all (8-35 lbs), he should never need other diapers as long as he is in them.  There are other benefits you can read about in the link above such as the material being better for his skin, less diaper rashes in most babies, and helps them potty train earlier. Knox actually had a small rash from being in disposables for 3 weeks, which vanished after 2 days in the cloths. But our decision was mainly save money. Oh, and it is better for the Earth...but we don’t really care about that as much. hehe

Our pale aka trash can with planetwise liner.
How it works: Cloth diapers have come a long way since the time when our parents or grandparents may have used them. They are super cute and durable. We use two kinds of BumGenius diapers, some with built in flaps to absorb liquid and some with an insert you have to stuff into it to absorb liquid. It’s really simple. You put the diaper on, the baby poops or pees in it, and then you stick it in a pale with a lid. Once the pale is full, you dump them in the wash and then hang to dry. We change Knox every 2-3 hours unless we know he pooped...and there’s no mistaking that! What about that poop you may ask? Well, since Knox’s only form of nutrition is breast milk, his poop dissolves in water, so you don’t have to clean it off before throwing it into the washer! Once he decides he is ready for solids, sometime after 6 months, then we will have to use a sprayer to knock off the poop into the toilet. But we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Wet bag in our super cool diaper bag. 
What about when we’re out and about: We use cloth exclusively, so when we change him while we are out, we just put the dirty diaper in this cute zippered wet bag and dump it in the pale when we get home. No harm done.

Cloth wipes aka washcloths rolled up.
What about wipes: We cheat a little here and use regular wipes when we are out or travelling to see our parents. Technically we could just bring some rags and a spray bottle, which we may switch to once we run out of these wipes. At home, we wet about 20 baby washcloths from Target, fold and roll them up, then place them in the wipe warmer. I use one per diaper and toss it in the pale with the diapers. They are washed with the diapers and dried with the inserts in the dryer.

All in all, our system works for us. It’s all we know.  It doesn’t seem hard or time-consuming. I actually enjoy it for some reason. Maybe because of how cute they look on his fat butt. 

Cloths drying & sun bleaching outside!
Photo credit: Savannah Menchaca Photography via iPhone
This brings me to another new Wells family decision. I am now a full time stay-at-home wife & mommy. This decision was made very recently. I was planning on returning to work as a physical therapist 2 days a week on August 20th.  As the date quickly approached, both Billy and I did not feel at peace about our past decision. I would have been working 8am-6pm on those 2 days, having to be away from Knox, and pumping multiple times to keep up my supply. Knox would have had to go with Billy to work which means running errands and being in an office while B made phone calls, etc. At the time it seemed like that would work, but then we met Knox. He eats when he wants, which is not a scheduled event. He takes naps, but not at certain times yet. And when he is awake for 1-2 hours at a time, we want to be stimulating him, talking, singing and playing. Thus we began praying for God to lead us to where He wanted me to be. After specifically praying this, I read through Titus. I came across Titus 2:4, “...and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled”. There are a lot of things in this verse that I am constantly needing the grace of God to work towards, then there is the obvious answer to my recent prayer. Billy and I both decided that God currently wants me to be with Knox. After much investigation/budgeting, we decided that it was possible and we would MAKE it work. There will be sacrifices that have to be made, but it is worth it for us to follow where He leads us.

Me & My Boy
People may think, why did you put yourself through 6 years of college/grad school, get your doctorate and license JUST to be a stay-at-home mom. Well, there will come a time when I WILL go back to doing PT. I will probably never work full-time again, but maybe part-time or PRN. That’s the great thing about my degree. Hey, at least I have 11 months of experience! Ha-ha

So that is where we are. Billy will continue working full time for River Stone and part time for Links USA. I will be with our son. It really feels too good to be true. My day consists of waking up to a sweet baby boy, feeding him off and on ALL day, catching every smile he decides to give me, and trying to make sure he feels loved. I love that I am able to clean and organize the house like I have wanted to for so long. I am learning new recipes and actually cooking for Billy!! He used to be the one who cooked. Also, I am able to spend time with local mommies who can teach me from their experience. I am so thankful for all they have taught me so far via demonstration, books, etc.

2 month old pretty blue eyes.
I pray that God gives me the wisdom to excel in this new position of mommy. I pray that I can love him even a fraction of the amount that God does. I pray that our little boy grows up knowing who Jesus is because we tell him and show him in the way we live our life. And most importantly, I pray that God leads Him to himself by the Holy Spirit so that Knox can experience true love and true life.