Being back in the baby business for the second time is a lot like the first, but I will admit we are slightly more tired (lazy) then for the first dance. Of course we are using most of LTD’s gear for BB, but amazingly in the last four years there have been some cool new developments that we could have used the back then. The Mommy and I have never had good luck with the diaper bag (as I always wanted a backpack and she did not) so we basically used two and half bags and I it was hard to find things. For BB we have done things a little different, Me+Mine Files by SugarSNAP is basically a filing system for the diaper bag. The five mesh bags, which fit in a diaper bag or basically any bag you want, feature blank tabs for you to write the contents of the bag or you can use the category stickers provided. And like most good baby products these were created by two moms who saw and a problem and fixed it. I know what you’re thinking; won’t I lose the bags inside my bottomless black hole of a bag? Each bag has a detachable ring that hooks to a larger central ring for a key ring effect, so in theory you shouldn’t lose them. The mesh bags are semi-see through so you can tell what is inside in case someone put something back without reading the label. The system works well so that you can make any bag a diaper bag much like having a car seat base for each car.
There are certain truths in life that are rock solid. At some point on your child’s journey from birth to college, you will have to change their diaper in the car. It’s not something you are particularly happy about, but it’s the cost of doing business, dirty business. But you say wait, in this day and age surely you don’t have to change a baby in the car? My answer to that thought is another question, have you ever been inside a gas station bathroom?
However, the Dipe N’ Go takes into account the unpleasant car diaper change and helps make the exchange as easy as possible. The changing mat is designed for minivans, wagons and SUVs. The mat attaches to the inside of the back hatch and turns the trunk of your wagon into a changing station just like at home (that is if your home changing table has a spare tire on it). The mat can go in a washing machine and has secret pockets to hold diapers, wipes and nose plugs. A mat is important if you care at all about keeping your car poo free since the car is where fidgeting was invented.
As many of you know, LTD has taken a distinct dislike to lying still on the changing table. The problem is bad enough at home, but out of the house it has become down right uncool. It’s like he is trying out for the lead role of a fish out of water in a play about a fish out of water. However, we have discovered a weapon in our fight against the flip and the flop, the Patemm Pad. The pad is large and round, so when the kid decides to do the hustle while you are changing him he stays on the pad instead of getting poo on your best friends carpet. At the end of the day, it’s just easier to change the little guy on the floor and the Pad provides an excellent space to do just that.
The Patemm Pad also comes with inner pockets in order to store diapers and other changing accoutrements. Of course another feature that is a must when dealing with baby stuff is that the Pad folds up into itself to form a nice little package. The Pad also feels more durable than other changing pads and creates the illusion have stepped into another world, a world where babies aren’t in charge if even for a moment.
So I’m in the store, wandering the aisles as I do since it’s the only thing open at 8am, and out of the corner of my eye I spy a stand up display for HUGGIES diapers JEANS limited edition. We are talking about disposable diapers with a denim print on them instead of white. They are designed to look like jeans with pockets and stitching. However, because they are diapers they only scream one look, Daisy Duke. I’m all for creativity and trying something new, but I think the powers that be can come up with something a little more baby appropriate than jean shorts. I will admit that I was tempted to get them for LTD if only to take a really nice picture of him in them to show the world when he is at his Supreme Court nomination hearing. Hey, don’t judge me he should have wrecked the car 16 years from now.
Loyal readers of Beyond the Car Seat have long known that we use Bum Genius cloth diapers on LTD’s bottom. Well, I think it’s about time for a follow up piece. We have been using the diapers for over a year now and they have held up pretty well. Only one diaper and one insert began to fray or lose stretchiness. The company has a very clear policy with easy steps to follow in order to return and get free replacements. The washing hasn’t been too big a deal and I am now a true expert at assembling them relatively quickly. I sit in his room and put them together while he takes them out of the basket and flings them everywhere. He also tries to eat them which is great ammo for when he is a teenager. When he brings a date home I can tell her that he used to eat his diapers.
Perhaps the smartest step The Mommy and I have taken in using the cloth diapers is to use an insert. Right now we are using Bambinomio Liners and they are wicked wide and capture most of the poo. Of course some days he just wrecks the things and I have to hose it off into the toilet. That’s right folks the fun never stops here at Casa de LTD. At the end of the day, we have saved money by not using disposable diapers and we help The Mommy Earth in the process.
Last week, LTD had a particularly severe case of diaper rash. He usually doesn’t get diaper rash that much so this was especially troubling. The Mommy researched good treatments and discovered that Zinc Oxide is a great way to deal with wicked bad diaper rash. We turned to Burt’s Bees Diaper Ointment and with its help along with The Mommy’s hard work the rash went bye-bye. The only problem was that because the ointment has Zinc in it and is very hard-core it looks like and goes on like Marshmallow Fluff. I would also mention that once The Mommy used baby powder LTD’s bottom looked like something from the bakery on Ace of Cakes. So a word of caution then regarding the use of the ointment, be careful especially if you are using cloth diapers or wearing clothes.
LTD eats like a horse now and everything that goes in has to come out eventually. It turns out that eventually is roughly every six hours. Okay, I’m exaggerating, but it feels like the little guy does go poo all the time since he started eating all sorts of new and interesting foods. I have come to appreciate the silent soldier in my war against poo, the Nature Babycare ECO wipes. The Mommy picked them because of their environmental benefits and I like the fact that they don’t have a flower smell. I have found in my travels that scented bathroom products don’t hide the smell of poo only make an unnatural combination called a pooflower.
The wipes are also chlorine free which is good since some people feel the same properties that make chlorine great at destroying bad things in water can also destroy the sensitive skin that covers the surface of babies. My only sadness regarding the wipes is that if I am using them it means the presence of poo.
Anyone who has ever worked in a large office knows what happens around 10am after everyone has had their morning coffee. For those fortunate souls who have never had the pleasure of working in a big office just imagine what happens in the bathroom after 25 accounts and file clerks finish their sunrise Starbucks. LTD isn’t addicted to coffee yet, but every morning like clockwork his plumbing kicks in after breakfast. Normally, who cares, the kid goes poo all the time, but the morning poo is cruel because I have just changed his sleep diaper less than 15 minutes ago. Another problem is that if he somehow manages to hold it for 30 minutes post-breakfast we are in the car running errands and lets face it, four closed windows and poo smell don’t mix.
Being a parent is a lot like being a spy. I’m talking real Jason Bourne type stuff. When he walks in a room he scopes out all the potential threats and exits. When I walk into a room I scope out all the possible places to change a diaper. Also like any good spy I need the best high tech equipment and when it comes to restroom-changing tables some make me feel like James Bond while others leave me feeling like Maxwell Smart. Why should it matter you ask, well for one thing a lot of public restrooms suffer from an extreme lack of quality and so the better the changing table the less gross I feel spending time amongst the filth. Recently, I have had great luck finding some pretty hardcore stations.
The Cadillac of stations is the Diaper Deck. The Deck features a paper towel holder and a deep concave bed. I actually feel safe using it. Another nice station is Rubbermaid’s Sturdy Station 2. The Sturdy Station also has a deep bed and feels safe. In a perfect world you are suppose to use the straps, but I doubt many people do, since using a strap that lives in a public restroom buries the needle on the gross scale. In terms of not great restroom changing stations I think the Koala Kare tables have a shallow bed and truly don’t feel safe. Lastly, whatever you do, don’t get me started on the fact that some store and restaurant restrooms only put a changing table in the ladies room. Those storeowners are lucky that I don’t know Krav Maga like Jason Bourne.
Changing LTD’s diaper was never fun, but for the most part it was relatively quick and painless. Well, the worm has turned. Ignoring the new smells his eating solids has created, he has decided on a course of action if you will. A mission statement regarding how he is going live his life. LTD has determined that he no longer wants to remain still. His new mantra being, give me squirmy or give me a bottle. The little guy flips and flops on the changing table that like Frankenstein we now have to strap him down. The straps prevent him from flipping, but not kicking. The diaper station looks like a wrecking ball has hit it when we are done changing him. It’s bad enough I have to almost touch poo on a daily basis, but to get kicked in the head for my troubles seems unfair.
LTD’s antics are not confined to just the changing table, he loves to wriggle and squirm during dressing and when we put him in the car seat. Dressing isn’t so bad as he has sort of figured out how to put his arms through the sleeves for us, but the car seat is the real challenge. Sometimes he stands up in the thing using reverse psychology. He knows we will be looking for the squirm so he goes rigid. Very clever, until we figured out a counter move, distraction. The Mommy goes all silly and gets right up in his grill and he is left powerless as his laughter allows us to conform his body to the seat.