Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Dapple Baby Review


Recently I have been on a big kick to use natural cleaners around our house. This has a lot to do with the recent addition of Little Guy; I want a safe environment for him as well a a healthier planet for his future. I found an amazing product online that is geared specifically toward cleaning baby items from dried milk on bottles to sticky finger prints on toys. Dapple makes natural baby products to help with everyday clean-up around the house.

The company was started by two moms who couldn't find organic baby products meant to clean toys, cups, bottles, etc. Everything they used left the detergent smell and a residue, not something you want in your baby's mouth. So, they made it their mission to create products that would be safe for babies and clean up the necessary messes. And they succeeded, all Dapple products use natural-based ingredients that are environmentally-safe, biodegradable, and free of parabens, SLES, and phthalates, as well as synthetic dyes or fragrances.

I had the opportunity to try the Dapple dish liquid and the Dapple toy cleaner spray. I was so excited as these items came in the mail just days after purchasing used toys at a local consignment sale.
I feel it is very important to wash all toys, both brand new and used, before children play with them. I had already washed the new items that we received as gifts at baby showers but was not thrilled as some of them got water inside when I put them in the soapy water. That wouldn't have happened with the Dapple toy cleaner spray as it isn't on there long enough, yet I felt confident that the toys were clean.
Here is what Dapple says about the toy cleaner spray:
Natural-based ingredients
Phtalate-free, paraben-free, SLES- & dye-free
Fragranced with pure lavender essential oil
Not tested on animals
Certified to contain no detectable levels of dioxane
What’s in Dapple Toy Cleaner Spray?
Purified water, baking soda, cleaners made from fruits, tree oils and glucose, French lavender essential oil, essential oil dispersant, preservative derived from natural amino acid.

In line with latest medical research, Dapple Toy Cleaner Spray is not antibacterial. It works like a thorough wash with soap and water – so baby can build up a strong immune system while enjoying clean surroundings. Just spray, wipe and play.™

I sat down with all of Little Guy's toys, a cloth, and the toy cleaner. Everything that had a solid surface was washed and the cleaner wiped away - simple as that!! I LOVE the lavendar scent but it doesn't stay with the toy, it just makes cleaning more fun for mommy :) I also wiped down the swing as a friend had given it to us and it was very dirty, I was amazed at how much dirt was on the cloth when I was done. A little of this product goes a long way, I actually sprayed directly on the cloth and was able to clean a few toys with just a couple of sprays. I am very comfortable with Little Guy putting toys in his mouth and I know I can easily clean them again when necessary.
Little Guy's drawer or toys - I did not wash the animals with Dapple toy cleaner spray, if you do they suggest that you do a small patch test first.
If you are a bottle feeder, which I am, you understand how important it is to have clean bottles. We buy the BPA free ones but then turn around and wash them with soaps that are full of chemicals. Not any more!!
Here is what Dapple says about their dish liquid:
Rinses fast
Natural-based ingredients
Phtalate-free, paraben-free, SLES- & dye-free
Fragranced with pure lavender essential oil
Not tested on animals
Certified to contain no detectable levels of dioxane
What’s in Dapple Dish Liquid?
Purified water, baking soda, cleaners derived from fruits, tree oils and glucose, French lavender essential oil, essential oil dispersant.
After Little Guy was born and breastfeeding didn't work for us, I found myself washing a ton of bottles. The first soap I reached for, and still do, was the Dapple liquid. I was so excited as the lavendar scent was back.... I noticed that the soap was a little thicker than traditional dish liquids and the suds don't last long. Be assured - these do not change the quality of the soap - I was very happy with how clean they were and how easy they were to rinse.
Dapple has focused on making organic baby products and they are very generous and make donations to a variety of organizations.
Would I buy Dapple in the future? Absolutely!! You can always buy online, but if you just want a small amount you will need to find a local retailer.
The products were given to me by Dapple but all opinions are mine.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Our Birth Story, Part 1

My husband and I planned on birthing our son completely natural - free of any drugs unless medically necessary. Well, that was my plan and my husband was supporting me in my decisions. It was important for me to take this route as I wanted our Little Guy to enter the world peacefully and for myself to be completely aware of my surroundings and in control of my body.

Great plan until my doctor informed me that he would not let me go over my due date considering that I have protein-s deficiency. With this my blood clots more than normal and even though I had been giving myself a shot each day throughout the pregnancy he said that my chances of clotting would increase with each day that I went over the due date. So, an induction was planned; we took the latest date we could - April 5th (his due date was Tuesday, April 6th). A couple of weeks before this I would have given anything to have him as I was so exhausted and still working every day. At this point I was on spring break and since I could relax at home I would have been willing to wait a few more weeks!

The doctor planned on using Cytotec to induce me as I wasn't dilated enough for pitocin. I went home and read all about it and started to freak out as the drug is not meant for labor instead it is an ulcer medication and a side effect is contractions. After my research I called the doctor and he calmed me down and I realized that I am not the only person in the world to use Cytotec for induction and the rare things that I read about could have happened to just one person but every case needs to be reported...

So, Sunday night we made sure we were packed and then got a lousy night of sleep due to finishing touches around the house, nerves, and getting up early. We arrived at the hospital at 7:30 am Monday, April 5th and got one of the rooms we wanted - a larger one with a tub! I immediately reminded the nurses that I wanted a doula but they suggested we wait to see if anything actually happened. After taking about 45 minutes to answer all of the necessary questions, I got my first dose of Cytotec. Yes, I said 1st dose- I didn't know that we would be getting more of this if it didn't take effect!!!!!!!!!!! After taking this medicine I had to lay in bed and be monitored for 2 hours for both the fetal heartrate and the contractions. After 30 minutes I had my first contraction and a few more followed within a short time; I was excited as I was sure something was beginning to happen - I was induced for goodness sake!!

We were taken off of the monitor at 10:30 and were allowed to walk around; our first stop was always at the nursery to see all of the new little ones :) There was a large rectangle in the maternity ward that was perfect for walking around and we completed so many laps that we had to turn and go clockwise after awhile... We had 45 minutes and spent a good portion of this time walking during which I felt several contractions but nothing that was extreme. The deal was that we would get the 45 minutes then be monitored for 15 and again get 45 to do as we pleased. The walking always brought on better contractions that the cytotec and laying in bed but that was not a choice that I was given.
After our first round with all of this we were given a 1/2 dose of Cytotec at 12:30 and they allowed me to eat a small lunch and the only really good part in all of that was the cookie!! I was told that if we did not make progress it was possible that we might be allowed to go home and come back as needed or Friday when my doctor was on call. This was one of those promises that seemed broken as nothing really did happen and I still had to stay... This dose followed the same path as the first; better contractions when we were up and walking than when we just layed there. At 4:15 the doctor came in and did an internal exam; we were 2cm dilated, 50% effaced, and -1 station. At 4:55 we were given 3/4 pill of Cytotec and the contractions started to become stronger and came every 2-3 minutes. Unfortuantely, this didn't last for too long...

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Cloth Diapers this cheap?!?

When my husband and I talked about cloth diapering we were looking at saving money and space in our landfill. However, we also knew that the start-up cost of cloth diapering would be rather expensive and we almost chose disposables as money is rather tight right now. We put it off for what seemed like forever before sitting down with two computers and looking at different brands. My husband found Nubunz on Ebay and when I went to research the company and read reviews I found that they were cheaper on their website. Yes, the one size pocket diapers are only $9.50 each and come with two inserts!
As I read more on their website I saw that there were 'factory seconds' for only $5.50 or you can order them without the inserts for only $3!! I was a bit nervous about the idea of factory seconds as I didn't want to waste our money but we decided to order 20 anyways. Yes, we got 20 cloth diapers that will fit our child until he is potty trained for only $126 and that included shipping and handling.
Apparently, the company that they order their PUL from sent some not so waterproof PUL and some of it leaks and some doesn't, essentially you are taking a gamble when you order these but they say there is a 20-30% chance that you will have a problem with the PUL. They will still cover problems with the diapers just not the PUL itself. Also, if you get the diaper and decide that you don't want it they will allow you to return them. Knowing this, I washed one of each color and tried them on our Little Guy before washing the rest. Since we had no problems I have washed the others and now have a great stash of diapers.
Even with the one size, they are fitting our Little Guy who is a little under 7lb. right now. He had a very loose BM last night and it held everything inside, absolutely love these diapers!! Also, with this being my first time using cloth, I must admit that I am very impressed with how well they wick the moisture away from his little bottom. We will definitely continue to cloth diaper!!

I suggest that you head on over to the Nubunz website and check out their factory seconds.
Go quickly as they are moving very fast, they are already out of the velcro square tabs.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Our first night in Cloth Diapers

We first put our Little Guy in cloth diapers on Tuesday, he was one week old at the time. I would have started earlier but I was so nervous to wash them - I was afraid of doing something wrong. I hadn't used them at night as I hadn't washed enough and was nervous about leaks.
He wore them all day yesterday and I continued with them at bedtime. You also need to know that I had offered to take baby duty all night as my husband had an early interview and he needed sleep.
So, the 12:30 feeding came around and he had wet through and the sheet was soaked. (I like to keep two sheets on so I can pull one off and not have to make any changes but he had wet earlier in the week.) So, I put him on the changing table and proceeded to change him into a new outfit. I placed a washcloth over his penis so he didn't spray all over as that is rather common these days. He may not have sprayed but he did wet and it got him and the changing pad sheet soaked!! At this point I started to think about the humor in it all and the great post it would make.
Since there were no clean mattress pads I didn't want to put him in there and took him into the cradle in our room instead. He slept well in there and I am happy to say that he did not wet through for the rest of the night.
He has not been in a disposable diaper since yesterday morning will continue to be in cloth diapers for daytime, nighttime, and on the road- we are loving this!!

Monday, April 12, 2010

We're Back!!

Tuesday, April 6th was a big day for our family as we welcomed Tate Thomas into this world!! He was born at 3:55 pm, weighed 7lb 4 oz. and was 20 1/2 inches long.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Holey Donuts Review

I recently had the opportunity to review some products from Holey Donuts, a company that makes donuts without deep frying them creating a lighter donut with a lot less fat.
The donuts happened to be shipped right about the time that a big snow storm came through the South so they took 6 days to get here compared to the 2-3 that they prefer. Please note - this was at no fault to Holey Donuts, we can blame Mother Nature here! When I contaced them concerning the delay they said the donuts would be fine as long as they were not melted. While the dry ice was gone, the donuts were still in great condition and we got them right back into the freezer.
From the Holey Donuts page -
Did you know the average donut has 15-20 grams of fat and as much as 480 calories?
Our patented cooking process avoids deep frying, creating a light, fluffy donut with as little as 3-4 grams of fat and 150-250 calories. You'd actually have to eat 4 of our full-sized, delicious donuts to get the amount of fat in just one traditional donut. What's more amazing is that we do not use any artificial sweeteners or fat substitutes to make our great tasting donuts. Unlike other "lite" or low fat foods, nothing about these donuts tastes low fat.
Our donuts are hand-made, flash frozen and delivered via express mail to arrive at your door, picture perfect and delicious! Keep in your freezer for a great low fat and low calorie treat anytime!
Low Fat Classic Vanilla Frosted
The vanilla frosting (and donut) were quite delicious! We happened to get these just before Valentine's Day so the pink sprinkles really added to the spirit of the holiday!!

Jumbo Reduced Fat Cinnamon Buns
These earth shattering full size Reduced Fat Cinnamon Buns contain no raisins or nuts. What is nuts, is the nutritional comparison! While both are about the same size, the Reduced Fat Cinnamon Bun from Holey Donuts! is super moist and delicious, yet has only 5 grams of fat compared to the Cinnamon Buns at Cinnabon with 54 grams of Fat!
We had a geocaching weekend planned so we took these out of the freezer the day before so they were perfectly defrosted when we were on the road and needed breakfast. Oh my goodness, these were absolutely delicious!! Even the guys, who were not sure how a low fat cinnamon bun would taste, were licking their fingers clean and saying they would definitely consider buying these again. I didn't feel that any flavor was lost by taking out the raisins and nuts, in fact - the apple flavor really added to it!

Sampler Favorites A
Included in this box are:

Reduced Fat Fudge Boston Cream (1): Low fat Boston cream filling with a delicious vanilla crumb topping.
Reduced Fat Raspberry Vanilla Truffle (1): Nothing beats this light combination of vanilla and light red raspberry.
Reduced Fat Caramel Apple (1): Rich caramel drizzled over a light crumb with real chunks of apple in the filling.
Reduced Fat Blueberry Crumbcake (1): Low fat blueberry filled donut with a cinnamon crumb coffee cake topping.
Reduced Fat Lemon Graham Cracker (1): Zesty lemon filling with a low fat graham cracker topping.
Low Fat Vanilla Crumb (1): Vanilla frosting and a light, fresh crumb topping (actually made from low fat muffins!)

While my husband wasn't too big on these donuts, I personally really enjoyed them. My favorite was the fudge boston cream, who doesn't like a good filled donut!!

Would I ever order them again?
Honestly, I do feel that they are a bit expensive and then the shipping makes it much higher as they need to keep them frozen. However, they often offer sales (one going on currently and they are more than 1/2 off) which dramatically lowers the cost. That would make it easier to place an order as they are a healthier alternative.

What would I do differently?
We immediately put ours in the freezer and took them out 1 or 2 at a time and microwaved them (one suggested way to defrost) but it seemed that the outside got soft while the inside cream was still a bit chilled. If I had microwaved them longer then the outside would have been too hot and possible the top melted. Another time I set them on the counter wrapped in a paper towel (they do not suggest this way) and they seemed to be too dry and I am not patient enough to wait an hour to eat my donut. They best that we ever had them was leaving the entire box out to thaw overnight (recommended).
Also, if I ordered these again I would probably repackage them before freezing. They come in a cardboard box with one piece of tape on them and since we didn't eat them quickly enough they became dry and picked up other flavors fromt he freezer.
I would definitely be willing to give these tasty, low fat donuts another try now that I know a little more about how to defrost and store.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Baby Update

We are due on Wednesday but the doctor refuses to let me go over the due date as I have protein-s deficiency and he wants the environment to be as controlled as possible. I really want to have this baby as naturally as possible so I would prefer to not be induced but I also understand his point. So, we go in Monday morning at 7:30 to get things started....
In the meantime, here are some pictures that a friend took when we were 38 weeks pregnant. We went to Lake Murray and she had some fabulous ideas and got some great shots.
I can honestly say that I wasn't too keen on bare belly pictures as I am a bit overweight, but Jordin worked with me and then I finally suggested that I try a belly pic!! If you live in the Lexington/Columbia, SC are and want to have belly picures (or any other for that matter) made let me know, I will hook you up!!