I was just thinking about lists. That happens on occasion when I’m using a product I really love, or remembering a piece of knowledge that changed my thinking, and I wish at that moment I could send the Publisher’s Clearing House brigade to every door and present the residents with this great information prize.
I like making lists. In fact, here’s a list of reasons why I might like lists:
- I’m scatterbrained, and have a tendency to organize things. Lists help me with both of those qualities.
- I like to collect ideas.
- And, last, but not least, a third reason, because I’m sure there is another reason to be had, but due to reason 1a, I can’t think of it, and don’t feel right making a list of two.
Here are three other lists of three:
Treasured baby hardware
- B.O.B. Revolution Duallie stroller. Any stroller that can haul (with a few two-person dead-lifts) two toddlers up Stone Mountain, with nary them feeling a bump, earns my love. (yes, I’m aware of the over-cautious recall for the drawstring)
- Baby Bjorn baby carrier. We have whisked our 3 munchkins effortlessly through airports, malls and forests with this comfy carrier.
- Our 3 Sunshine Kids Radian XT Car Seats. They fit three across in our van, feel incredibly sturdy, fold flat for easy travel and storage, and they enable me a glorious birth-to-80-pounds of five-point-restraint
banishment to the garagepeace of mind.
Favorite Big Boy Toys
- Imaginext anything. My boys love these play sets and I love how durable and well-thought-out they are! We have nearly every set available this year, so we have epic adventures with Batman, air, sea and space exploration, and, of course, whatever fun can be had at a Toy Story landfill.
- Balance bike. We got Ian a balance bike when he was three. It looks exactly like a bicycle with no pedals. By the time we had upgraded Ian to a real bike for his next birthday, he was able to ride down a hill with no feet on the ground. He rode it inside, outside and upside down…almost. The cheaply-affixed seat broke off its post, but thanks to some zip ties and pliers, Isaac is now giving it a spin.
- Legos! I almost added Hotwheels or Play-doh, because I’ve never outgrown them, but I have to be honest that Legos have become a superior plaything for Ian. Few other things can render him quiet and still for an entire church service. Being 4, the instructions are still a little hard for him to follow, but I feel like he’s learning when I guide him through, letting him figure out the difference between the instruction picture and what he’s building. Mostly he free plays with them. He engineers wild contraptions and tells us what each little part does. “This part traps the fish and gobbles them up. Then, it goes through this tube, up this way, and out this hole. Here are the lights and this is the engine. This part transforms into a hopticopter.” There are a couple samples below. If there are any that appear to be made by me, it’s a mere coincidence, because I’m all grown up.
I’m going to add a part 3b, because Isaac has taken a different fork in the toy aisle: GeoTrax. He is all about trains, and these trains are all about awesome. The tracks are fun to build and hard to destroy. He loves the wooden trains too, but it takes one swipe from the “big giant baby!” to collapse the track. These at least stand a chance, until the babe gets older.
Things I Learned From Pregnancy and Childbirth
- C-Sections are ridiculously prevalent (over 30% in our area) and frequently related to “over-intervention.” For some reason, the risk of surgery is more acceptable than the “risk” of allowing mom’s body to do what it was made to do. On that note, I have to give a shout out to Atlanta area’s very own Dr. Tate. Doc T, I love you! [He has about a 6% C-Section rate and welcomed my successful VBA2C attempt. Spelled out, that’s Vaginal Birth after Two Cesareans, unheard-of in most hospitals.]
- [Possible TMI to follow] I would come to regret cutting off a perfectly good piece of my boy’s body. I don’t feel moved by non-astounding, barely relevant data originating in sub-saharan Africa or by slim odds of major or minor ailments. Circumcision is no substitute for safe-sex or proper hygiene practices. Women get UTIs all the time, but we don’t cut off anything for that or over-concern ourselves with bottle-brushing a certain self-cleaning organ. Teeth get cavities, but we don’t pull them out in childhood to prevent them. You get the gist of it. Related to this, considering the near 50/50 split of circumcision decisions in the USA, there is a frightening lack of awareness of what or what not to do with a baby boy’s foreskin. Soapbox time. It is not retractable at birth, or any time soon thereafter. To do so wounds a baby and is, in fact, the first “brutal” step in circumcision. It is essentially a continuous membrane that takes years (usually) to naturally detach. Now, how many nurses have twisted their faces at me in shock and bewilderment that I don’t “retract and clean for hygienic purposes?!” Hygiene? He’s a baby. Unless he was born with whiskers and armpit hair, baths are for relaxation and food-fight cleanup. His teeny weenie needs only a gentle rinsing. Truly. Urine is sterile and flushes out any possible invaders, and as with any female, there is a gradual outward migration of everything else produced “in there,” so for a young intact boy, only “clean what is seen.”
Ok, you can take the spoon out of your throat. Here is:
- I’m sure I’ve elaborated on this in far earlier posts, but an early revelation came when I realized it wasn’t my job so much to raise good kids, but to not mess them up. They are so enviably loving and earth-perfect at birth. It’s all I could do not to teach them my awful, selfish, flawed ways. I’ve read a number of books trying to re-train myself in communication. They are child-raising books, but, really, the principles are fairly universal. I won’t give a book report, but I will plug them as my ideal secular model. Playful Parenting, by Larry Cohen and Adventures in Gentle Discipline, by Hilary Flower. My learning and growing as a parent and citizen of Earth, has landed me feeling pretty “crunchy.” I aim for healthier, less-polluted food. I’ve come to adore a number of homeopathics. And, I’d definitely be lumped in with the Attachment Parenting group. I sleep with my babies, breastfeed until they won’t, wear them all around and try to afford them the same respect in my interactions that I’d give an acquaintance. All so I don’t mess them up more than I can help it, or at least feel like I’m doing my best. I’m sure they’ll turn out fine in spite of me.