Wednesday, April 25, 2012

May Media Detox

    I don't remember ever using a tape, all my childhood music was on cds (my mom says she had lullabies and toddler music for me on tape though). As far as I remember, my elementary school just "always" had a computer lab. I know I was using it in kindergarten. I have no idea when exactly I first used the internet. It's just always been there for me. I started using cell phones in elementary school. I started my first Myspace account in middle school. I joined Facebook my first year of high school and had no idea how new it was.  The few times as a teenager when we didn't have internet, I would haul my butt on foot or by bus to the nearest library several times a week. I never willingly went without media or gadgets. I slept with my cell in my bra so I could be woken up by the vibration of incoming texts. My mother used to take my cell phone battery out of my phone when I was on restriction. I had two extras at any given time because I could NOT be without it. I taught my mother how to IM. 

  All of that should let you guess my age. I'm 20 years old, born in 1991. A dedicated member of Generation M (media). And I never questioned that until becoming a mom. Now though, I'm looking at media through a different lens. And thinking- I need to take a step (or four) back. Recently I read "The Winter of Our Disconnect" and it really struck me that I'm part of the kids in that book's generation, not the moms. The same thing occurred to me when I read Generation Text.  What kind of parents are Generation M'ers? And what will media consumption look like for OUR kids? Right now, the children born after 2010, are babies and toddlers. But they are def. the beginning of a new generation. They can use iPads before they're potty trained. They can work YouTube better than their grandparents. What will this even-faster, even-younger and even more consuming media appetite do for them? 

I believe in no screen-time under 5. And limited after that. I love social media, and a good Friends marathon is perfect for a rainy afternoon. I am on Facebook and that even more ensnaring addiction Pinterest every time LM nurses to sleep during the day. I don't even want to count up how much time that is. Because it would probably horrify me. Which is just another reason I'm going on a semi-media ban for the month of May. It's not a full-media ban, because I would lose my schmit without books (which yes, are just an old-fashion form of media). 

So here are my personal rules for my May Media Detox:

1. Zero Facebook and Pinterest time from May 1st until May 31st except for May 23rd when a good non-local friend's baby is scheduled to arrive via necessary c-section. 
2. Once a day at most email checks (, email me!) 
3. Tv/videos are only on when Hubs is home and wants to watch. And I'll be discouraging that
4. Google and internet in general only when I really  need it. No more random WILF'ing!!!
5. Will still be blogging! And hopefully without all my other internet-distractions, it will be much more frequent

* I won't be posting the links to new posts on my Facebook page, because yep, that would violate the Facebook ban. Any readers who want to do it though, feel free! 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

What We've Been Up To- April

   Mostly, we've been sick.

All three of us.

Yea, blugh.

Mommies shouldn't get sick. We all know there's no such thing as mommy sick days. I'm drinking elderberry syrup, Hubs is taking random OTC meds and LM is getting Hyland's cold tablets as needed. But mostly we're coughing and feeling crappy all day. For two weeks now. Sigh. Hubs is mostly over it if not completely and LM is mostly mocking my coughing at this point. Mainly, I'm the one who can't shake it. A less than great immune system seems to go hand in hand with my chronic pain.

Since we're feeling better these last couple days, we participated in the Great Cloth Diaper Change yesterday! We set a record for our city (Baton Rouge) with 36 pairs.

 The host for our city is a friend of mine, and the owner of my favorite store- Angel Britches. She handed out goodie bags.... and coupons for buy 1 get 1 half-price. And then announced that if you came in after the Change, it would actually be get one free. Oh yea!

We went straight from the library (our rainy day back-up location for the Change) to Angel Britches, along with several other of the participating mamas LOL. We where in a hurry to get to my sister's karate tournament but as an official cloth diaper addict, I couldn't pass up a deal. I picked BumGenius snaps to get in Albert and Lovelace. Sooooo pretty. Also, bought all the small and regular size Fuzzibunz mama cloth she had, 10 in all since I heard they're being discontinued. So don't actually need them yet (yet another reason breastfeeding is awesome) but have them on hand whenever. Was thrilled to learn that Angel Britches is moving into a bigger store this week! 300 more square feet for diapers, toys and more! Way back in October when I first found AB, Stephanie (owner) had told me she was trying to lease a bigger store so I'm very excited it's finally worked out.

What else have we been up to? Well, my identity was stolen. I apparently bought a house back in 2008, which was the start of it. In 2008, I was 16/17 years old btw. Def. not buying houses. So we've been working on sorting that out. Spending literally hours sitting in the IRS waiting room with LM is NOT exactly fun. They don't even have changing tables in the bathrooms, so after a few hours I had to balance him between the sinks to change him. It was narrow and too short and he tried eating everything he could get and rolling off. My nerves where shot by the time I finally got him redressed. But while waiting, he was actually very zen. They had small benches so he could sit next to me and play. I was really, really impressed with how well he handled having to be contained and just wait for so long, especially while sick. His only complaint seemed to be me not letting him wiggle down to the (very nasty) floor. Collected a bunch of compliments on his calmness and cuteness, which of course no mama is going to turn down.

LM's been trying a few new foods, though we're still just not big into doing solids. He's getting close to 8months old and it's just not clicking with us yet. He likes it sometimes, mostly to play with and taste a bit but still only 2-3x a week is he interested when I offer him something. Which is fine with me. Right now, it seems like he goes back and forth with liking a particular food too. He does seem to like the flavor of the herb dill though.

I'm also checking out convertible carseats. LM was 22.9lbs and 28inches long at his 7month check-up. His infant seat is a Britax B-Safe, which goes up to 35lbs and 32inches. So we have a while, which is good because it's going to take a while to do all the research LOL. The Radian rxt was the seat we where planning on getting, but now I'm not so sure. It's a GREAT seat, but maybe there's something better. In the UK, Britax has a seat that goes up to 55lbs RF, whereas the rxt only goes up to 45lbs RF. I've been drooling over that Britax seat this afternoon. It's called the Max-Way and I'm going to be calling Britax to see if there are any plans to bring this seat to the U.S. And there's another seat debuting here this summer- it's called the Foonf by Clek and you should check it out. It goes up to 45lbs RF like the Radian but it's taller. If it comes out before LM outgrows his infant seat, it might be the way we go.

Just read the Winter of Our Disconnect- about a single mom and her three teenagers who unplug for six months. The fourteen year old actually moves out in protest (to live with her father) but then comes back home despite the no-screen rules. It talks about how Digital Natives (aka Generation M, born 1990 and later, aka MY generation) have major screen-time addictions. Which is true and only going to get worse unless we as parents wake up to the problems with this. It was not only an interesting read but a truly funny read. AND despite her children now being teenagers, the mom references breastfeeding (positively) several times throughout the book. I actually found this at our local library.... and started reading it while still in the parking lot! For me, it serves as a warning manual, another sign to never let screens take over, to not let us get THAT bad.

I'm actually thinking of doing a media detox around here, maybe for the month of May. Not from blogger though, so maybe more of a Facebook and Pinterest detox, the two biggest addictions for me. I do have to say I've excited that in just a couple months our cable contract will be up and we'll just be getting internet and phone service, not cable when we renew!

^ While talking about media, there's a pic of my not even 8month old playing with a laptop. That laptop is the new one that makes us a 2-adult, 3-laptop family. Yeaaaa. We also have 3 tv's. In my defense, the laptop was either off or had a dead battery at the time. But still, sigh. Hubs is a techie, he loves all forms of media technology (except Facebook and Pinterest) and is going to school for computer programming. So we'll never manage to be a NO computer family. Unless I want him to spend hours and hours at Starbucks using their wi-fi.

LM showing off his new Lovelace BumGenius one-size with snaps!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Humble Beginnings (Garden 2012)

That's the garden plot at my grandparent's house, which this year it kinda mine. It's not big but without some trees coming down, it can't get any bigger. Maybe next year? But anyway, this is it last weekend, before anything's been done to it this year. Last year it was fairly successful, and mostly I'm hoping I don't totally manage to screw it up. See, I don't have a green thumb. More like a black one. My grandmother certainly didn't pass down her soft touch with plants to me.

Friday, April 6, 2012

If You Give A Baby A Spoon...

            you might end up with a happy baby, a mess and some great pictures. At least that's how it played out here. We're getting into solids more, a couple times a week now. I was munching some cilantro hummus from the farmer's market and LM was trying eagerly to get into my plate. After he managed to swipe some into his mouth and loved it, I gave in and sat him down. He didn't seem to be enjoying using his hands, so I handed over my spoon. It was love at first touch. And yes, it was messy. But as someone who's fed several babies and watched many a young child eat..... not that messy in comparison. He got a little in his hair and that would have been the hardiest to clean if he had more hair but we jump into the bath after he eats anyway. I know even many parents who are into Baby Led Solids avoid utensils as long as possible because of the extra clean-up but I just found it to be part of the fun. Not something I'd do in a restaurant probably anytime soon.... but I don't exactly see him eating a lot of restaurant food now or later. Too much salt, sugar and who only knows what else.

            Cilantro hummus is his clear favorite so far. He stayed interested in it the longest, seemed to enjoy the taste and ate all of it he could.

                                       Last night, we shared half a raw yellow bell pepper.

Despite that face above, he did seem to like the bell pepper slices. After several tastes of it, he stopped scrunching up his nose in surprise and was soon trying to cram two slices into his mouth at once. Several times, he bite off a piece and considered it for a while before pushing it off of his mouth. He knew he couldn't handle it and took care of it himself. Not a problem, though I must admit- I was nervous watching. Not too bad, but I stopped taking photos once he begin biting off pieces so my hands where free.

   He had cantaloupe recently too. The coolness of it, shape and smell of it all seemed to appeal to him. But the taste of it must not have or he just wasn't feeling it because he lost interest after just a couple minutes.

And a couple days ago, he also got to gnaw on some bread and bite off a piece. He sent my grandmother's kitchen into an uproar over that, which is kind of funny now but wasn't then.

Tonight's menu for LM is bananas (which he's tried before but not really liked) and maybe some more bell pepper slices. I don't follow the 4-day/7-day "rules" about introducing new foods. I've done enough research to be comfortable with only doing that for high allergy-possibility foods and we won't be introducing those yet anyway. We do watch for any possible ill-effects like rash, upset stomach etc but at this point LM isn't really even ingesting much of it anyway (besides the hummus!). We're just having fun and it's great!