Friday, September 26, 2008

Playdate for bunny

Well, we've been having an issue with the bunnies for awhile. We had to move them into the basement over the winter because the spot we had them in was too close to the back door and they were freezing. But we haven't been happy with them in the basement. They're too far away from everyone and not getting nearly the social interaction that they need. However, with starting the daycare I can't put them just anywhere in the house. They need to be somewhere where toddlers can't eat any poop that they might kick out of their cages. So, there is a spot that they could go in the kitchen. But there's only enough room for one cage. So, there's the dilemma. This wouldn't be a big problem if our bunnies would gladly be cagemates, but they hate each other. We've actually considered getting rid of Gizmo as he's never really bonded with anyone in the family, including our other bunny Oscar. We feel terrible about this, but haven't been sure what to do. Well, I spoke with the lady who owns the local pet shop. She's really nice. She suggested a possible. trade as she really can't take on an extra rabbit - she's having trouble finding homes for them. Soooo....Oscar went on a playdate today to see if he can possibly bond with their rabbit Allie. If so, we'll trade Allie for Gizmo. This may sound heartless, but I really feel that a trade would raise the quality of life for all of the rabbits involved. Allie attacked Oscar a couple of times during the playdate. The last time Oscar fought back. She's cute as can be and a mischievous little bun. Actually, she's a little big. She's bigger than Oscar. Anyways, the petshop owner decided she would take Oscar over the weekend and work on bonding them. She's going to keep Oscar until Tuesday. Despite their initial squabbles, the petshop owner feels that these two bunnies can be bonded. And we all think they'd make a cute little couple. So, Oscar's away at his "girlfriends" for the weekend. Naughty rabbit - don't have too much fun!!! Yes, they are fixed by the way! So I hope the bonding goes well. If it does we'll have a pair of rabbits that can live together and Gizmo will be able to find a home where maybe he can be a single rabbit in the home. Or perhaps there's a girl bunny out there for Gizmo.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Final Frontier

Well, I'm working on the last bit of my house that's completely unorganized - the bedroom. Well, really the basement's not really organized either, but who cares about that? Anyways, I cleared all the junk out of the bedroom, took some measurements, and went and bought some appropriate containers. Then I ran out of money and still have tons of junk sitting in the middle of Boo's room that needs containers. Soooo...I guess it will sit there until I can afford to get some more storage units for them. There's probably a bit more I could do as far as going through all that junk - I just pulled it out, haven't gone through it yet. But I'm pooped. I worked for about 7 hours straight on this project. Yes, our bedroom is that bad! As I've worked to get the downstairs daycare ready, any junk/papers/etc...that still doesn't have homes was moved to the bedroom. I did splurge and get new bedsheets and a new duvet. And the room looks so much nicer with it. When I get more money I'll get some more storage containers, a shelf for the wall, and some sort of big plant to cover up a corner that is nothing but computer/printer/phone wires. I'd also like curtains and a curtain rod to go with it. I've decided on chocolate and different shades of blue as the color scheme. No other room in the house has a color scheme, but this will be the first. I've decided we'll need a haven from our daycare-ified home! So, that's what I'm gradually working towards. I'd love to paint, but the thought of all that work makes me want to vomit. So for now, organization and cleanliness will do. And perhaps a few pics on the wall.

Would you like to help end world hunger?

I'm participating in the CROP walk this Sunday. CROP stands for communities responding to overcome poverty. I'm raising donations for this cause. If you'd like to give, let me know. I am doing this last minute, I know. But even if I could raise $100 before Sunday, that would be something. So, if you'd like to help me out let me know. I'll need a check from you by Sunday. Or you can go online to donate with a credit card. Here's the link:

My Cropwalk page

Thank you for considering this opportunity!

Let's stop this government bailout!!!!

I'm not usually political in my posts, but I've been flaming mad about the current financial state of this country as well as the proposed "solution." I know that there are a lot of people that feel like me about this government bailout. It's absolutely ridiculous and irresponsible. The current administration is attempting to put an itty bitty bandaid on a gaping wound! I don't believe that this is going to trickle down to the little people (that's where I would be located). I think this will make things worse for everyone. Spending money that we don't have to bail out financial giants is irresponsible. As our government goes deeper in debt there will be less money available to help those who are truly in need. Funds for social programs will be end up being cut. Forget about the promises of either presidential hopeful - because the new administration will be financially crippled if this bailout goes through. Funding for education and medical care will suffer and so on. This proposed "solution" is a very bad idea. I've e-mailed my senators and plan to contact my representatives. Please do likewise!!! It took me a few minutes to google my senators' contact information and send them my opinion. Surely you can spare a few minutes. I know it's hard to feel that our words matter. I definitely feel that way a lot. But I know there's a lot of people out there like me who are the little ones on the bottom of the financial ladder in this country. We need to have our voices heard!!!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Mothering Your Nursing Toddler and Hair Pulling

I just finished reading the book "Mothering Your Nursing Toddler". I got it from the La Leche League here. They have a lending library. Isn't that nice? I like when I get to read books for free! Anyhoo, it was a great read. I found it to be just the sort of thing I've been looking to read as Boo and I move into a different stage here. Toddlerhood of course presents some challenges that infancy does not. Boo has a pretty spirited will, which I think is wonderful by the way. It will serve him well in life. So my goal is to guide him through childhood in a way that instills in him morality and all that good stuff without squelching the spirited personality inside. As he gets bigger I find myself having to remind myself to get off my butt and not just yell "no" or "not for Boo" from across the room. Especially challenging right now is his love of hair. Anyone that has really beautiful hair watch out. Boo wants to touch it and play with it. And he's not so gentle, even though he does try to be at times. So we're working on that. Anyways, this book, while about nursing, had enough reminders in it to give me hope that my child will not be pulling hair forever. In fact, this phase will pass all too quickly. So while it's a nuisance, I must remember to be gentle and respectful of him as I educate him in appropriate touch of someone's hair. This is easier some days than others, all depending on how much sleep I've gotten and my current mood, hunger level, etc.. Yelling, instilling fear, and shaming could perhaps squelch the behavior more quickly. But using a gentle approach that is respectful of him as a person will help him to change his behavior. I'd love for him to learn that it hurts others and not pull hair out of his affection for others. I don't want him to stop pulling hair for fear that mommy will be mad at him or he's afraid of being punished. My goal is to use discipline methods that focus on intrinsic reasons for changing behavior as opposed to extrinsic motivators.

I see that this post is turning into a mish mash of several ideas. Oh well, that's the way I write sometimes. Anyway, back to the whole nursing thing. I do love the book that I read and feel that it's got some great information for those who nurse longer. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone considering nursing past a year.

Tomorrow's the big day

Well, tomorrow is my first day that I have a kiddo. The downstairs is clean and somewhat organized. I definitely need to add some things to the collection. I'll be making a trip to the lending library this week to check out some toys and other supplies. I'm hoping to snag a double stroller provided they're not all checked out. I'm printing out some forms right now. Fun. Boo is asleep, thank goodness as I need to get stuff done. I took a day off yesterday. I've been reading, sleeping, breathing daycare stuff for the past couple of weeks pretty heavily, so I made it a point to not do anything daycare related yesterday. It was nice.

So that leaves me with some things to do tonight. Nothing major really. I need to get my sign in/out sheets ready, daily sheets, injury forms (just in case) and I want to get my kitchen tidied up a bit more. Also, all of my daycare files are hanging out in a file box instead of in the file cabinet, which is in our bedroom. The bedroom is an absolute mess right now so that will be my next organization project. I'm hoping to get it done before T gets home from Germany.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Quick Update

This will be quick as my child is attempting to crawl over my printer. We need a new bedroom office set up quick! I have two kiddos officially enrolled for daycare. Yippee!!! One starts part-time this coming week. The other starts full-time the week afterwards. So here we go!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Almost a Kitchen Fire

So tonight was a little more eventful than I would've liked. Boo was up running around. I was getting ready to settle in on the couch with a netflick and put Boo to sleep, but decided I needed some popcorn for the duration. So, I set about making my popcorn as usual. I use a stovetop popper with the handcrank and cook it with the oil - none of that overly dry airpopped crap for me. Anyways, for some reason my pot started smoking really badly. I'm not real sure why. It is an older pot, but it's what I've always used. Anyways, by the time I realized just how bad it was smoking (I'm stuffed up, so it took me awhile to smell it) I started hacking and my eyes and chest hurt. Poor little Boo was playing in the next room and he started hacking. So I turned off the burner and moved the pot, which had smoke pouring out of it by now. I grabbed some baking soda and threw it in the pot. The air was getting smoky. My fire alarm didn't go off. But it was hard to breathe in there. So I threw open a couple of windows and grabbed Boo and put him in the car. Once he was safely in the car I went back in for the pot and set it outside. Then away we went to let the house air out. My original plan was to get Dairy Queen and head back to the house, but I decided just to go to my parents' home for the night. I figured a fifteen minute trip to DQ and back probably wasn't going to air out the house enough. So hopefully it will be fine by morning. But I've had a pounding headache ever since we left. I'm glad I caught it though. It's odd. I've had other smoky kitchen incidents in the past, but this one really affected my lungs right away. I don't know if it had to do with the metal that it was burning through or what. But it hurt to breathe. Hence my decision to leave. I didn't want Boo's little lungs to be hurt. Anyhoo, crisis averted. Yay!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Just for the Record

I just want to state something for the record. I feel that recently I've been posting more blogs related to my way of parenting/living naturally/etc...So...I just want to comment on my reasons for posting more idealistic posts, for lack of a better word.

1. There are those out there who might be inspired and look into resources that they might not otherwise look into.

2. There are those out there who are definitely interested in these ideas and would like to know about additional resources.

3. This is a place for me to be accountable to live in a way that I have decided is right for me and my family.

I do not post on these topics to judge others who choose different paths. I have many friends, family members, etc... who have chosen different ways of doing things and I love them all. But I have decided as part of my personal growth process to stop avoiding topics whereby I know others have equally strong and opposite opinions. This is not respectful of myself.

So, I hope that those who read continue to do so with an open mind and know that I'm just trying to live life in the way that I believe is right, just as I'm sure that you're doing.

Much love,

Childcare Update

Well, I have sent an enrollment packet to someone who's interested in part-time care. So provided she continues to show interest I'll have my first little kiddie enrolled by the middle of next week. I have an appointment to take 1st aid and CPR. Fun...I've had this course like a zillion times. It's not rocket science, but I guess I can see the need for the refresher considering it's not used often. Actually, the only thing I've ever had to use is the back-pounding motion for choking with my own child. And I'm not sure he wouldn't have gagged it up on his own. But you know how we mothers feel the need to pound the second our child starts to look a little panicked. Better safe than sorry.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Boo's Missing Daddy and Childcare Stuff

It's a bit sad as I know that Boo can tell daddy is gone. I show him T's pic everyday and make sure that I talk about daddy coming back. I've talked to T a couple of times on the phone and I can tell that he misses Boo so badly. It breaks my heart to think how he must feel right now. I'd be devastated if I had to be away from Boo for so long. I don't think I could handle it. T will get to actually sees some parts of Germany this weekend, so I'm pretty excited for him.

Boo and I have kept busy this week though. I'm trying to get out and about while I still have my daytime freedom. Having a full-time childcare during the day is getting closer and closer. I put my licensing and license-exempt packets in the mail today. Woo hoo! The license-exempt will go through first. The licensing will take a bit longer. Filling out the license-exempt packet just allows me to be listed with the Childcare Resource and Referral service so that I can get free referrals from them for parents interested in childcare. Not a bad deal. I bought my fire extinguisher today so that was pretty exciting. Now I have to actually put it up!

I'm looking for an infant/child 1st aid and cpr class and I'm working on getting daycare insurance. Both the bunnies are getting checked out by the vet next week. many fun things to do!

Anyways, I guess that's all the latest!

Monday, September 8, 2008

My Home is Clean and Somewhat Organized!

It's clean! I say somewhat organized because the bedroom is a disaster. It's where I've shoved all the leftovers that still don't have a home. But honestly, a lot of it is papers that need to be filed and the filing cabinet is in the bedroom. So there really aren't many items left that don't have homes. Just some that aren't in their homes yet. I'm hoping to do some decorating this week. I have an idea to copy some illustrations out of storybooks - think old Little Golden Book artwork - and put it in my reading corner that I created. I also have some shelves that I picked up for a few bucks while garage saleing. They're great. They look like airplanes, but they need a little help to be sturdy as they're worn in some places. So I may hit the hardware store. I need some additional cabinet locks anyways. So I guess that's where I must head at some point this week. But anyways, it feels soooo nice to have such a clean house. YAY!!!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Parenting with Love and Logic

We've been doing a study in my parenting class at church based on a program entitled "Love and Logic" parenting. I don't pretend to know all about it just yet as I've just got my feet wet so to speak. But I know that many people with children are looking for new resources as parenting is such a tough job. "Love and Logic" is based on teaching natural consequences to children and helping children to learn to solve their own problems. Here's a link to the site:

Love and Logic

Here's another link about parenting peacefully that lists some other resources as well as "Love and Logic."

Parenting Peacefully


Friday, September 5, 2008


Anyone ever see that show on TLC? That's what I've been trying to do in my house for the last four months or so. I've just now made real progress in the past couple of days. Woo woo for progress! I've been trying to get the house organized so that everything has a home. I feel that this is so crucial to my being able to run childcare out of the home. I have a couple of parents coming Monday night for parent interviews. So I now have a deadline. I think that I needed one to get my rear into high gear, know what I mean? I will say that my house has never looked nearly as bad as the ones on Clean Sweep though, just for the record!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Empathic Parenting

This is an exerpt from Jan Hunt's book "The Natural Child" regarding trusting children.

"* We understand that all children are doing the very best they can at every given moment.
* We trust that though children may be small in size, they deserve to have their needs taken seriously.
* We know that it is unrealistic to expect a child to behave perfectly at all times.
* We recognize that "bad behavior" is the child's attempt to communicate an important need in the best way she can.
* We learn to look beneath the child's outward behavior to understand what he is thinking and feeling.
* We see that in a very beautiful way, our child teaches us what love is."

And a quote from an author quoted in her book:

"Two questions help us see why we are unlikely to get what we want by using pumishment...The first question is: What do I want this person to do that's different from what he or she is currently doing? If we ask only this first question, punishment may seem effective because the threat or exercise of punitive force may well influence the person's behavior. However, with the second question, it becomes evident that punishment isn't likely to work: What do I want this person's reasons to be for doing what I'm asking?

We seldom address the latter question, but when we do, we soon realize that...punishment damages good will and self-esteem and shifts our attention from the intrinsic value of an action to external consequences. Blaming and punishing fail to contribute to the motivations we would like to inspire in others."

- Psychologist Marshall Rosenberg

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Why I Shop Small Business

I know that some have wondered why I don't shop at Wal-Mart as a rule. I imagine that some even think that I'm doing so because I am "uppity" or "too good" or love to waste money. I'm sure the list of what others might think could go on and on. The reality is that saving a quick buck may not always be in the best interest of myself or my community. Every purchase that I make has long-term ramifications. That money goes somewhere.

I've radically changed the way that I shop for things in the last year or so. To give you an example, let me give you a run-down of my day:

I went out to buy groceries and cleaning supplies (I make all of my cleaners):

I started out at Target (yes, I realize this isn't small business) to get some new bedsheets (ours have holes and are worn beyond recognition) and paper towels and hopefully some spray bottles for my homemade cleaners. As far as I know, there's no small business in town that sells these items.

Next stop is Menards - Target didn't have the spray bottles. I get my spray bottles and move on.

I stop at Inner Wisdom. Now I'm enjoying myself. The shop owner's mother is there and she asks how my ankle is doing. She helped me pick out some natural remedies for my sprained ankle last week. I grab a couple of essential oils that I'm running low on - I use these in my cleaning recipes as well as for relaxation, massage, and aromatherapy.

Next stop is Innkeepers for a cup of coffee and sandwich as I know that I've been out for awhile and will get shaky if I don't eat soon. It's a local coffee shop that has really nice staff and an impressive array of food and goodies.

Now for Cornucopia and Uncle Billy's Bakery - the health food store. I pick up a few bulk spices for my menu for the week, some glycerin for cleaners I'm making, and some cheese and bread for a fancy version of grilled cheese I'm making later in the week. I chat with the new girl and discover that we graduated from high school in the same year.

And finally Hy-Vee - to round out my groceries. A few produce items that I know I won't be able to order from the Local Grower's Network (where I get my produce), a couple of pantry staples, and some baking soda and vinegar for my cleaners.

That's seven stops! Why all the trouble? I could've gotten everything but the sheets and essential oils at Hy-Vee. And believe me when I say that there's times I'm tempted as going to seven places is not quick!

However, there's a sense of community when buying from small business. As I've purchased from local vendors I've had a chance to chat with and get to know some of the small business owners in town. They're great people. I don't know that I've ever gotten to know a Target cashier the way that I've gotten to know some of these people. Also, the dollars that I spend at these local businesses help to keep those businesses here and keep dollars in the pocket of these hardworking people, rather than going into the corporate pot. Granted, I realize that Target and HyVee are corporations. Why Target over Wal-Mart? Wal-Mart is known for its socially irresponsible behavior. Granted, I'm sure that Target has done irresponsible things also. But I guess Wal-Mart is just known for being irresponsible and taking advantage of others. At some point though I have to buy the things that I need somewhere if I can't buy it from a small business.

I've always been interested in sociology. I think there's much to be learned from studying society. One thing that has been a disturbing trend in America is the loss of the sense of community. I strongly believe that the mindset of "saving a buck" at the expense of all else has contributed to this. That is what I meant by the money I spend having long term ramifications. We must stop thinking beyond our immediate pocketbooks and start looking at the long-term effects of our buying habits.