Archive for Carboy

The Mommydom Rules

Next week I am attending a Positive Parenting workshop, and it’s made me think about what my “rules” are by which I parent.  Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:

  • No candy.  OK, no lollipops in the living room.  Twizzlers are good because they can be doled out one strand at a time, but each strand is big enough Carboy doesn’t think he needs to whine for more.
  • Don’t give in to a whining child.  Except when the other child is screaming, and I’m trying to get out the door/through the store/whatever.
  • No more apples.  Seriously, child, you eat your body weight in apples every day and you look like Skeletor’s little brother.  Have some candy, for God’s sake.  Here’s a Twizzler.
  • Less screen time, more outdoor/activity time.  Unless I’m trying to beat my personal best on Scramble.  Or it’s cold outside.  Or I’m tired.
  • Science is great.  Space is cool.  But dear God, why does NASA Kids use the macarena as the background music for its games?  Make it stop now.
  • I will feed my child McD’s happy meals, but no more than once a week.  Chicken nuggets are a nice supplement to the apple slices and apple juice that come in them.
  • Free range parenting: pass off children to any willing and vaguely competent adults wherever I go (church, park, friends, etc).  Collect children when ready to leave.
  • Love expressed daily.  Snuggle often.  Sneak in kisses on dirty faces.

If I had to define my parenting style, it’s attachment-esque.  I carry Milkboy  in a wrap or sling, because the damn car seat weighs a ton, and I need two hands to stop Carboy from whatever mischief he’s getting into.  I bedshare with the baby because I’m too lazy to get out of bed in the middle of the night to nurse.  I do baby-led parenting because I have strong willed children who will not do anything they don’t want to do.

This winging-it style worked well up to this point but the combination of Carboy getting older, the addition of Milkboy, my unemployment and full-time homemaker status, etc, are making it not a viable option anymore.  Hopefully I can find something we can all live with so I can go to the park without fear of my child melting down/getting in a fight/being labeled “difficult.”


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Adventures in Pumping

Breast-feeding: What you need to know about pumping at work –

I just read this article on how to ask your boss for accommodations for pumping at work, and was reminded that this is one of the things I least look forward to about going back to work whenever I finally get a job.  The politics, procedures, and effort of pumping are some of the major barriers to women being able to meet the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendation of exclusively breastfeeding infants until at least six months and continuing to breastfeed with supplementation of solid food for at least a year or longer.

When I went back to work 8 weeks after Carboy was born,  I worked for a small nonprofit with only two other employees, so none of the pumping laws really applied.  It was a health organization, so the importance of breastfeeding for baby and mom was totally supported, but I was the first employee to have a baby and kind of had to work out a system for myself.  I was also lucky that my boss allowed me to work from home in the mornings to reduce the cost of childcare and the number of times I needed to pump each day.

My “office” was one of four desks enclosed by a 5 foot high cubicle wall within a larger open space.   On days when there was a lot of traffic in the office, I pumped in the only room with a door and a lock: the bathroom.  It was a nice big ADA-accessible single user bathroom, but it was still a bathroom.  I would roll my desk chair with my laptop and my pump into the bathroom and set up a little pumping station on a rolling file cabinet that ended up there for some reason.  There was no wireless internet in my office, so I could only work on documents, not check email or anything else on the web.  I played a lot of solitaire while pumping.

On days I was alone in my office or it was just other women, I would occasionally pump at my desk.  I tried to be as modest as possible, going into the bathroom to put on the hands free pumping bra and then covering up the “horns” with my shirt or a shawl.  I tried to warn other folks in the building that if they heard the “whoosh whoosh” sound coming from my area, they should knock on the cubicle wall before barging into my office, or they would get an eyeful.  There was one day when the UPS guy was mighty surprised to come around the corner and see me in all my pumping glory.

I pumped until Carboy was nine months old, and then he was eating enough solid food to cover the afternoons when Supernanny was with him so I didn’t have to pump.  We nursed often in the morning, and, as is common with working moms, we nursed all night long.  Thank God for co-sleeping and side-lying nursing, or I would have gotten no sleep at all.

Now that I am unemployed and looking for a new job, I know that I am not going to have the flexibility  to work from home in the mornings, so I will have to pump two or three times a day.  I am totally dreading this.  But I will do it because it is what is best for Milkboy and for our family.  Why oh why can’t we have a breastfeeding-friendly culture that values giving children the best start in life by having state-paid maternity leave for the first year?  Maybe I should look for work in Canada or Norway 😉


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Things I say more all the time

“Sit on your bottom”

“Please do not lick your brother”

“Put on your clothes or your Ferrari is going into time out”

“No hugging people you don’t know, even if they are kids”

“Stop trying to sit in the baby bouncer”

“Eat your hot dog or no more fruit”

“Get your hand out of my shirt”

“If you don’t have to go potty, why are you grabbing your penis?”



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Death and Replacement

One of our beloved family cats died at home after a brief illness last week, so we have been talking about how she’s in “kitty heaven,”  and we’ll get a new kitty in a few months after her sister kitty isn’t so sad anymore (the vet warned that our quite elderly other cat could be stressed into death by the premature addition of a kitten).  Carboy, after initially telling me he was going to save the dearly departed from kitty heaven, has now rather enthusiastically embraced the idea of a replacement.  At first it was just limited to cats: he requested a “rainbow kitty,” then a red cat, then twin yellow kitties.  More recently he has begun to expand this idea, demanding that when our Versa goes to “car heaven” that we get a “Nissan Altima with ten seats” as a replacement.  Given his car obsession, it seemed like a natural progression in his mind.  Tonight however, he took it in an alarming new direction.  During his nightly bath, Carboy informed me that when I go to “girl heaven,” he was getting a new girl named Christina.

Really not sure how to take that.

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