Saturday, September 8, 2012

cloth diapering & homemade baby food

there are many things i planned to do as a new mom as it relates to the daily care of my child.

but there are only a few that i was DETERMINED to do, regardless of any challenges.  among these were:

  1. breastfeed
  2. cloth diaper
  3. make my own baby food

well, almost 8 months into this mommy thing, and i've been successful at one of the above: breastfeeding.  

i've been a pretty epic fail at the other two. 

we had every intention of cloth diapering (for both health and financial reason); we even attended the 'cloth diapering 101' class at a local baby boutique which was supposed to help us make sense of the VERY complicated world of cloth diapers, but instead left us even more confused and overwhelmed than before.  when we set out to cloth diaper, we had NO IDEA how many choices there were and routes we could take.

at that point we had been using disposable diapers for a couple of months, and the thought of trying to choose between 'all in ones' or 'pocket diapers' or 'pre-folds', and diapers with snaps or velcro or adjustable diapers, etc., etc. was a bit more than we could handle.  i kept telling myself  that maybe in a few weeks or the next month i would have the mental and emotional capacity to take on cloth diapering.  but that time never came, and i was once again reminded of my tendency to put off and procrastinate those things that seem overwhelming to me. and with disposable diapers at my fingertips, i was never forced to just figure it out.

now that i really have no excuse (except a preference for the convenience of disposables), and i still REALLY  want to cloth diaper, there are times i think maybe it's not too late to switch over to cloth diapers. it's hard to not beat myself up over giving up on cloth diapers before i even really started.  so maybe instead of going cold turkey like i always envisioned it, i could take the advice of a friend, and start off slow, incorporating one cloth diaper a day and working my way up.  not sure why i didn't think of that.  i guess it's because by nature i tend to be an all or nothing kind of person.

so maybe cloth diapers are still in my near future - who knows?

on to homemade baby food.

because of baby r's eczema issues, his doctor wanted to hold off introducing solids until after his 6-month checkup.  well, for a number of reasons, his 6-month checkup didn't happen until he was closer to 7 months old, and although he was given the green light by his doctor at that time, introducing solids has been a slower process than i originally thought.  

in the couple of weeks since that appointment, baby r has had the following - 
  • rice cereal (with breast milk mixed in) - he's given this almost every day and has gotten better at swallowing (rather than pushing the food right back out with his tongue), but at any given time, we're lucky if half the food makes it down.  the rest is on his bib, clothes, hair, hands, towel, high chair or floor.  or being spit out at mama.
  • pureed peas (out of a jar, with a bit of rice cereal mixed in) - he liked even less than the rice cereal alone and really figured out his spitting reflex quickly when eating this.  
and just like cloth diapering, i've been wanting to start making baby food, but kept putting it off for another day.  little did i know the day would come earlier this week as a result of the convergence of just the right factors:
  • i ran out of jarred peas (and determined i wasn't going to buy anymore)
  • the plans we had made (pool party at the cousins house) went awry when baby r woke up early (and cranky) from his morning nap
  • my mother in law, sue, delivered more fresh veggies from their garden, among which was a beautiful looking zucchini
  • the baby cookbook (gifted to me by a dear friend when i was pregnant) on my coffee table continued to taunt me each time i walked by
for my first attempt i made - 
  1. pureed sweet potatoes - something i've never liked, but my child is going to try everything, regardless of my like or dislike!
  2. pureed zucchini with a pat of butter

well, it was one of the easiest things i've ever done; had i known, i would've started a long time ago!!

i literally only needed the following items:
  1. steamer basket
  2. hand blender (food processor would also work)
  3. oven in working order
i steamed the zucchini for about 8 minutes and pureed it while hot.  let it cool about 1/2 hour before refrigerating (3 days max) and then freezing in ice-cube trays (3 months max for freezing).

i baked the sweet potatoes at 425 degrees for about 45 min, let cool, scooped out the insides and pureed.  let cool and refrigerated and later froze.


not only was it easy, the frugalista in me knows it's going to save us a TON of money, and best of all, i know my bud is going to get the best nutrition i can give him.

not sure i'd be singing this tune if i was a full-time working mom, but i don't have that excuse...

baby r LOVED the sweet potatoes, and i can't wait to see what he thinks about the zucchini in a few days!

now if i could just figure out the cloth diapering, i'd be set...  :)

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