Monday, December 20, 2010

This and that

Wow, it has been too long since I last blogged.

Long story short, things are going well! We are all into a new routine now, and Ruth seems to be over "new baby syndrome" and enjoys being a big sister. Here are some things that have happened over the last couple of months:

-Our family joined us for Eva's blessing on Nov. 7. Thanks to everyone who was able to join us, and also thanks to those who could only join us in spirit! :)

-We got a piano! Thanks to the Zendejas family for gifting us their old upright. Ruth and her friend Jack enjoy playing on it, and Ruth is now an aspiring singer/songwriter because of it. She likes to play on the piano while flipping through the pages of the Children's Songbook and making up songs to go with the pictures. :)

-Ruth threw away her binkies. Yes, she literally walked to the trash can and threw them away. I suggested it, and she just did it. It was an unplanned thing, but she is doing really well, and I'm proud of her!

-Eva has changed from a newborn to a baby seemingly overnight! She is big - about 12 lbs already - and is wearing 3-6 month clothes. She is so smiley and chatty. Waking up to her smiling face every morning is a wonderful thing.

-On a somber note, Tony's Grandpa died. Tony traveled to Utah about a week and a half ago to attend the funeral. His Grandpa performed our sealing, and he was a wonderful man. He will be missed.

-Christmas! Wow, Christmas is so much more fun with kids who can appreciate it! Ruth loves looking at all the lights, learning about the nativity and Santa, and anticipating Christmas presents. I'm working hard to make it special for her. :)

Also, since Ruth has gotten so much better at talking during the last few months, here are some Ruth-isms:

-"I don't like it no more."
-"No! Nuffin!" (spoken when she doesn't want to do something)
-"I like it!"/"I want to!" (spoken excitedly whenever we mention something she likes to do)
-"Perfect _______" (perfect pumpkin, perfect orange, perfect Christmas tree, etc. -- anything she sees that she likes)
-"I wub you!"

I will try to post more frequently!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Welcome, Baby Eva

Tony and I are happy to announce that our lovely little Eva Faith made her appearance at 12:30 a.m. on Monday, October 11. She was just 31 minutes shy of being a 10-10-10 baby, but the hospital had 10 babies on 10-10-10, so we were fine with not messing up those numbers. :) While part of me wished she had come earlier in the week, I know she came just when I was ready.

With out getting into too many details that would be TMI, let's just say the labor was intense. I was actually having strong contractions all throughout last week. I went to the hospital thinking "this is it!" on Tuesday night (10/5) and had 10 hours of contractions, dilated to 4 cm, and then my labor stopped. By that point, I had only slept a few hours in 24 hours and I really didn't want to stick around the hospital to get induced. So we went home and I continued to have contractions on and off throughout the week. On the way home from church on Sunday, around 4:30, I started having very strong contractions that, once again, stopped at about 7:30. I decided to go get some rest since I had been up with contractions Saturday night. I woke up at 9:15 p.m., puttered around the house, and then the contractions came on really strong, but they weren't any closer together than about 6 minutes. Finally, when I could no longer walk or talk through them, we called the midwife and told her we thought it was time to go to the hospital. She agreed. The ride to the hospital was a little crazy, as the contractions started coming very close together. We arrived at the hospital at 11:30 and I was dilated to 6 cm. About 30 minutes later I had dilated to 9 cm. The midwife broke my water, and we had a baby 30 minutes later! It was intense, but I did it!

Eva is great. She looks so much like Ruth to me, but she has a darker complexion and hair. For comparison sake, the top photo is of Eva and the bottom is of Ruth:
She's eating well and starting to get into a better sleep schedule. After just a few days of her being home, I'm convinced that newborns are easier to care for than 2-year-olds. Ruth really enjoys having a new sister. She loves greeting her in the morning and tries to share her toys, snacks, books and whatnot with her. It's actually very sweet. But Ruth is having a difficult time sorting out her feelings and has been having an overabundance of temper tantrums. Obviously, she has been out of her routine for well over a week now, and I think she's just wishing life would start to feel normal again. Hopefully it will pass within the next couple of weeks. I'm sure it's hard to share your mom and dad when you've had them all to yourself for more than 2 years.

I've been doing well -- just trying to keep up on my sleep. I have been starting to feel a little stir crazy, but I know I need to take it easy. I feel really good all day and then start to feel blue in the evening after dinner. The feelings tend to fade after a couple of hours. I have to say, it's the worst part of having a baby for me. With Ruth, those feelings went away after a couple of weeks. Here's hoping the baby blues fade faster this time around.

I am so grateful to be a mom to such wonderful little girls! Tony and I are very blessed. Thank you to everyone for your thoughts, kind acts, and well-wishes. :)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Happy fall!

For me, Labor Day marks the crossover from summer to fall. At first I was sad about it, but now I'm enjoying the cooler temperatures and the smell of the fall leaves. I feel like there was a lot I wanted to get done this summer around the house and the yard, and much of it didn't get done. But that's okay -- the winter months are still good times to work on the inside, so hopefully we can get some more rooms painted and redone as the weather gets cooler.

I have been doing some serious nesting. The upstairs is pretty much all put together right now. The rooms are bigger than I anticipated and are looking a little sparse, but that's okay. I don't like having lots of stuff just to fill space. We peeled the wallpaper off in the dining room on a whim, and now the wallpaper-less walls are starting to bother me. I'd like to get the room painted, but we need to take down the wood paneling first, and that will probably be a bigger project than we anticipate. So for now, we just have an ugly dining room! It will get done eventually. I think the bathroom will end up being our next major project. Because it's our only bathroom, the remodel will have to be carefully coordinated. We've already gathered most of the supplies we need to redo the room -- flooring, faucet, new vanity, etc. We've picked out a new tub surround and paint. We just need to block out a weekend and get it done! I don't know if it will happen before the baby comes, and that's alright, too.

I'm now in my 36th week of pregnancy. It's a little crazy. Pregnancy definitely goes by faster when you already have one child and you have a lot going on. It's starting to sink in more and more that we will have another person in our family. We have a few different names in mind, and Tony and I are looking forward to seeing what she looks like and what kind of person she becomes. I'm hoping that Ruth will adjust to it well and that she and her younger sister will grow up to be good friends. Tony and I went on a tour of the new Methodist Women's Hospital a couple of weeks ago, and it will be a great place to have the baby. They have great big whirlpool tubs in the L&D rooms, and the postpartum rooms are like mini-hotel rooms. The details of actually having the baby may get complicated depending on when she decides to come because we will have to find someone who can watch Ruth at the last minute. I am going to line up a few different people who can watch Ruth and cross my fingers that one will be available when I need them. My hope is the baby will come around her due date or later because that's when my mom has taken some time off work. But it'll work out no matter what, I'm sure.

Tony's new job is going well and he is really enjoying the management side of the business. He's been doing a great job in his classes, too, and he and Ruth have been doing a lot of fishing together in his free time. Tony recently went out and bought her a little pink Barbie pole, and she can reel in the fish all by herself now. I love watching her as she discovers new things while fishing; she gets so enthusiastic about the frogs, worms, squirrels, water bugs, ducks -- little things I often take for granted.

I have some more organizing and cleaning to do over the next few weeks, and I know the time will fly by and we will be a family of four before we know it!

Happy fall! :)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

More blogs to love

Hi! I love blogs and since I have discovered some wonderful blog goodness over the last few months, I thought I'd share my favorites with you:

The Pioneer Woman
I just love this website. It's written by a woman named Ree who lives on a ranch in Oklahoma, and the site is filled with beautiful photography and delicious recipes. Ree hosts lots of great giveaways, although her readership is so huge that the chances of winning are pretty low. Today she is giving away a KitchenAid mixer. She also has her own cook book. Check it out!

Young House Love
This blog is written by a couple who are decorating their house. They share stories about their hunts to find the perfect items to make their house a home. They also give great DIY tips. I love their style.

This is a great blog that gathers craft projects from other blogs. They also have giveaways. Cute stuff here. Today, the site features a tutorial on how to make this lovely pillow.

Tip Junkie
I'm not sure if I've recommended Tip Junkie before, but I love this site. It's kind of like Ucreate in that it acts as a gatherer of wonderful craft, meal, activity ideas from other sites. They're basically a "tip clearinghouse" for moms. They also have great party ideas, tips on how to get organized, and lots of other stuff. The other day they had a how-to on flower oragami.

Of course, I don't get to actually do most of the things featured on these blogs, but I love to look! :)

If you have a favorite blog you think I should check out, let me know! I love blogs!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Family Reunion and Happy News

We had a great time at the family reunion about 10 days ago! Ruth did such a great job riding in the car with only one or two accidents during the entire trip. We kept her in a pull-up for those long stretches of Wyoming road where there is no place to stop and go potty. The pull-up was pretty much always dry, though. She kept herself occupied and generally didn't complain during the car ride. We arrived in beautiful Beaver Mountain on Thursday evening.
I had forgotten how much I love that place. The air was so clean and crisp, and the mountains are gorgeous. I would love to live there again. Tony and I dreamed about retiring there someday and owning our own cabin near Bear Lake. We stayed in the ski lodge, and there was a total of about 100 family members there. It was great to meet Tony's cousins, aunts and uncles and see his brother, dad and Diane. Here is Tony and his dad in our family reunion shirts:
They assigned each sibling's family a color. Ours was turquoise. Here is Ruth sporting her turquoise:
Ruth also got to meet her Great Aunt Ruth:
Tony and his cousin, Brett:
And another cousin, Olivia:
Aunt Pam and Aunt Mary Beth:

Oh, brotherly love:
Unfortunately, I didn't get a photo of our family all together on my camera. Ruth had fun running around with all the little kids, blowing bubbles, etc.
I enjoyed a break from the humidity! There was great food, a talent show, games, and all kinds of other fun stuff. Here is the Gardner family band, with Tony's dad at the drums:

Tony got to go fishing with his brother a few times, which he really enjoyed. We spent Saturday in Logan with Tony's dad, Diane and Mike, and got to enjoy some Jamba Juice, Gossner's cheese and shopping at Deseret Book. Then we had a super yummy dinner at Maddox and stopped in to say hello to Grandma and Grandpa Wayman. On Sunday we drove 11 hours to North Platte and got to stay and play with our great friends, the Olbrichts. Monday we drove the last 5 hours to Omaha. I have to say, those hours seemed to be the longest of our trip. We were all completely exhausted and ready to be back home.
Don't ask me why she has a pillow on her head. Our cat, Justin, was very happy to see us after we had been gone for so long.

This week Tony and I completely finished painting the upstairs. Now I just need to sweep and mop up there, and then we can take up our furniture and get organized. This week I'm starting to watch Jack 4 days a week, which will be a big change but should be fun. Probably our most exciting announcement for this week is that TONY GOT PROMOTED!!! Woohoo!!! He has been wanting this for a long time and I am so glad it has finally happened. He is going to be the sales manager over two of the mall kiosks here. He gets a pay raise and every Sunday off as well as every other Saturday. He will also have to work longer hours during the week, but he is looking forward to the opportunity to be a leader. It'll be a new opportunity for him to stretch and grow and use his talents. His start date is Sept. 1. School also starts back up for him in a week and he's taking 13 credits, so we will have to see how all of that goes. He is so close to being done with school, we can almost taste it!

New baby comes in 7 weeks! Time is flying by! The pregnancy is going well aside from the fact that my blood pressure has been very low. I need to do better about keeping hydrated and that should correct the problem.
Here is a silly parting photo of Ruth pretending to be a ghost this morning:

And here is another cute one of Ruth hanging out with her dad:

Happy Sunday!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Upstairs painting

I'm a little late in posting these, but after long last, here they are:




The lighting isn't the best, and obviously the rooms are still a mess, but you get the idea. I'll post more pictures when we get all moved up there. It looks so much better! The color is called "Nurture" by Behr. It's a blue-gray, and I think it looks really nice upstairs - not so gray that it's depressing. It was an impulse choice. I went to the paint store with the intention of getting something totally different, saw a sample of that color, and thought, "Hmm, that might look nice." Tony convinced me to just get it. I'm a little worried that I might think it's too gray in the future, but it looks much better than before and there are so many different options for coordinating with other colors. I'm excited to get it cleaned up and decorated!

In other news, we are going to the Gardner Family Reunion this week. It was another last-minute decision. The reunion is held every three years, and I've been wanting to go so I can meet the rest of Tony's family. (And Tony wants to go for obvious reasons.) It's going to be at Beaver Mountain this year, which is in the northernmost part of Utah. We had been going back and forth about whether or not we were going to attend, and in the end we decided not to go because we just couldn't come up with the money for it. But thanks to the generosity of Tony's Dad and Diane, we are going to make the trip after all. We will drive out Wednesday and Thursday, hang out Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and then head home Sunday and Monday. The car trip will be long, but it should be a lot of fun! I have to admit, though, I've been so distracted by painting for the last week that I haven't done much to get ready. It's going to be a busy few days around here!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Hello, Hello

Happy Sunday to all. Ruth and I are staying home today because we don't feel well... I'm feeling stuffed up and have a sore throat, and Ruth has a cough and a very runny nose. She's been playing just fine, but I think she has a bug that's being passed around some of the nursery kids at church and I'd rather we just kept our germs to ourselves today. It's a bummer because we had planned to go have dinner with some good friends tonight. We will have to invite them all over another time.

The Elders Quorum hosted a camping activity on Friday night at Memphis State Recreation Area, and we went with the intention of staying all night. We really enjoy camping as a family, although we haven't been in about a year. We took our little brother (through Big Brothers Big Sisters) because he had said he wanted to go camping with us, and since there would be fishing and lots of other kids there, we thought this would be a good opportunity. Unfortunately, we ended up breaking camp during the late evening. Our little brother wasn't having fun and had a disagreement with Tony about going on a walk around the lake (alone, in the dark). Ruth was still awake and playing in the tent at 11 p.m. It was way hotter and more humid than I expected. And we were being eaten alive by mosquitoes, even after reapplying bug spray every 15 minutes. So we headed home, took a shower and enjoyed the air conditioning. We had a lazy Saturday afternoon and then took Ruth to see Toy Story 3 at the movie theater. This was her second movie in a theater, but I doubt she remembers the first -- I think she was only 10 months old, and she didn't watch the whole thing. She really enjoyed the movie and didn't have any accidents while watching it, thankfully! I would recommend Toy Story 3, by the way. It's just as good as the first two.

Potty training is continuing to go well. We have been reminding Ruth to go to the potty throughout the day, and I was starting to get worried that maybe we started potty training her a little too soon because she wasn't going to the potty on her own. But this morning she announced "potty" and headed there herself, so I'm feeling better about things. :) She had a couple of accidents on Friday, but none Saturday or today so far. Accidents happen, as they say, but it's nice to see the progress she is making.

This morning I've been reading a book by Penny Simkin (a fairly well-known childbirth educator) called The Birth Partner. I read it before I had Ruth and then gave my copy to a friend, so I just bought another copy and was glad I did. I feel this birth experience creeping up on me and I have been feeling unprepared for it, and reading this book is making me feel better. It has lots of very specific descriptions of labor and delivery as well as coping methods. It's actually written for people who "coach" during labor and delivery, such as dads. Tony found the book very helpful last time around and is going to read it again within the next couple of weeks.

Here is a list of all the things I need to do before baby arrives in 9-11 weeks!
-Paint and move into upstairs bedroom
-Set up nursery
-Set up office
-Freeze some dinners
-Buy a couple packs of disposable diapers, nursing pads, milk storage bags, etc.
-Go through baby clothes
-Buy any necessary baby clothes (since Ruth was born in the summer, I think we might just need some pants)
-Find my breast pump and clean it out again
-Sew nursing cover, make sling wrap and sew swaddling blankets
-Clean out basement (hopefully)
-Start buying Christmas presents, or at least start generating ideas of what I want to buy/make. This might seem a little crazy, but I have a feeling I'm not going to want to do much Christmas shopping during the two months after I give birth.

Speaking of Christmas, one of my favorite blogs, TipJunkie, is hosting Christmas in July giveaways. You should check it out. The author will also be posting tons of gift ideas throughout the month -- nice for those are crafty [or aspire to be crafty -- like me :) ].

Happy Sunday!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Summer update #2

I finally found the camera cord! Woohoo! So here is the summer update continued:

Shortly after the Pioneer Trek was Girls Camp. I went up for a day and got to watch the girls have a shaving cream fight, go down the slip-n-slide and race in their canoes. It was a ton of fun, and I'm looking forward to being able to spend more time at Girls Camp some summer in the future.
After Girls Camp was hanging out with our friends in North Platte, the Olbrichts. Tony and Josh had an "Iron Chef"-style cooking battle and a spending limit of $20 apiece.
Both dishes were good, but Josh's use of bacon pushed his food to the top. We're looking forward to having more "Iron Chef" battles in the future.

Then we came home and decided it was time to get Ruth in her big-girl bed, especially since she's outgrowing her Pack N Play (which would make it tough to travel). We got the bed all painted and set up, and it is lovely!
Tony did a great job building it, and it's so sturdy that it'll last forever. Ruth fell out of it a few times, so Tony had to make another side rail to keep her inside. I'm just using the fitted sheet and her baby quilt right now because that's what she's used to, but eventually she'll start using regular bedding. She loves her big-girl bed, although after a couple of weeks she still won't get out of it on her own. I don't know why, but I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts.

On July 2, we celebrated Tony's birthday! He's a whole quarter of a century old now! We went on a fun date in the evening to the Greek Islands, followed by the Shakespeare on the Green performance of Romeo and Juliet. The fireworks at Memorial Park were on the same night, so we got to view a great show while walking to our car. It was great fun!

On Independence Day, we headed over to my aunt and uncle's house and enjoyed a wonderful cookout and some fireworks. Tony's inner pyro definitely came out that night -- I think he had more fun with the fireworks than a lot of the kids did. :) I forgot my camera, so no pics!

This week we decided to start potty training Ruth.
I thought she might be ready because on Sunday morning she announced she had to go to the bathroom but wouldn't go in her potty chair. Of course, a couple of minutes after getting her diaper back on, she was stinky. So on Monday morning Ruth and I went to Target and I let her pick out some big-girl underpants. She chose ones with Minnie Mouse and the Princess on the Frog patterns, and when we got home she went on and on about how "cute" they were. She loves wearing them, although she doesn't get to wear them often yet because the only time she has accidents is while she's wearing them. I've been using the bare-butt method (meaning she runs around naked while at home), and she's learning to tell me when she has to go to the bathroom. She doesn't like wearing a diaper anymore, although I told her she has to wear one during nap and bedtime until she wakes up and the diaper is still dry. She had no accidents yesterday and even went to the bathroom for a friend who babysat her for a little while for me. She's had no accidents so far today. She also started going on the big toilet today using a potty seat. Yahooie!

As for baby Numero Dos, I'm starting on going to my doctor's appointments every 2 weeks now because I'm 28 weeks along. I can't believe how fast this pregnancy is going! I only have 2 1/2 months to get ready for this baby's arrival and I feel like I have a ton to do - painting, shopping, sewing, etc. I'm going to make a couple of big swaddling blankets, a nursing cover-up and a sling wrap. Tony and I are going to finish painting the upstairs during the next couple of weeks, and then I will feel better about our baby preparations.

We LOVE our cat! He is wonderful and perfect for our family! Ruth and her friend, Jack, thoroughly enjoy playing with him, and he endures their screams and prods very well. Here is Ruth being naughty and sitting on top of the cat condo:
Unfortunately, Justin got sick last week. He threw up at least once a day for about five days, and so we took him into the vet on Tuesday. Turns out he has a bowel obstruction, so he gets Metamucil mixed in with his food now and seems to be feeling much better.

Lastly, I'm a new Mary Kay consultant! It's great fun! Check out my website sometime, and let me know if you need anything!

I think I'm all caught up now! :) Here is a picture I just thought was funny. Ruth loves wearing gloves and other people's shoes!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Summer update #1

It has been way too long since I last updated. I'm sorry! Things have been busy. This will be a quick recap of the major happenings of the last month. I can't post everything I want to right now because I'm not sure where the cord is for the digital camera, so I can't upload our most recent pics.

In early June, Tony and I were a "Ma and Pa" couple for the stake's Pioneer Trek Youth Conference. From what I understand, the stake sponsors a handcart trek about every 4 years. They divide the youth into "families" for the trek, headed by two adult leaders. Tony and I had a wonderful experience walking the 18 miles with our "children" and would do it again in a heartbeat.

Not long after, my little Ruthie turned 2! We had a fun little party in our back yard with some friends and family. Ruth got all sorts of fun things, including a very nice kids picnic table, a turtle sandbox, sandbox toys, Mrs. Potato Head, Buzz Lightyear action figure and I'm sure there's more than I'm forgetting. She loved her balloons and carried them around for two days after the party (until they mysteriously disappeared).

Ruthie has also been showing some interest in using the potty. The first time she went in the potty it was her idea, and I made a huge deal of what a great job she did. We are probably going to start seriously potty training her within the next week. This morning she announced she had to go poop and went and sat on the potty for a while but wouldn't go in the potty. Shortly after getting her diaper back on, she was stinky! I think she's ready.

Also, today Tony was sustained as the second counselor in the Elder's Quorum Presidency in our ward. He was previously the Sunday school teacher for one of the teenage classes. He's going to be a busy dude!

That's all for update #1! Update #2 is soon to follow! Promise. :)

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Adventures with Justin

Meet Justin, our first family pet!

Justin is an orange-and-white, shorthair cat. He's 10 years old, is already declawed, and has a stubby "bob" tail. We're not sure what happened to his tail, but it looks like it's been short for a while now. We got him at the Nebraska Humane Society, where someone left him in the night drop box. Whoever left him didn't include any information about him, so we're not sure what his real name is supposed to be. He lived at the Humane Society for about 6 weeks, and since they called him Justin for so long, we decided it would be easier to keep that name. They have hundreds of cats at the Humane Society right now, and Justin was the one who had been there the longest. After looking at all the cats, we picked three to meet personally. Justin was the one who did the best with Ruth. She squealed at him and it didn't bother him at all. We are very pleased with our pick. :)

Having Justin has been an adventure so far. I'd liken the process of getting a new pet to having a baby who has just become mobile. We thought we had our house "cat-proofed," but Justin found a hole in our basement that he used as a hiding place for the first couple of days he lived here. It's kind of difficult to describe, but in our basement we have these big walls called knee walls. They slope away from the foundation, leaving a narrow space between the top of the knee wall and the basement ceiling. We also have a kitchen addition with a sub-floor underneath that connects to the basement at the top of one of the knee walls. Well, Justin climbed up the knee wall and found a hole into the sub floor under the kitchen addition. Tony managed to coax him out of the hole the first time and covered it with cardboard. Of course, where there's a will, there's a way, and Justin managed to get around the cardboard and hide in the hole again later in the day. When Justin came out again to get some food, Tony wiggled his way up the knee walls, covered the hole with chicken wire, and thought all was well. Once again, Justin found a way around the chicken wire and into the hole, where he spent Saturday night. We didn't see him all day yesterday until we came home in the evening. We shut him upstairs and Tony went down, climbed up the knee walls, and managed to completely board up the hole into the sub floor.

It was a difficult undertaking because there isn't much space between the top of the knee wall and the basement ceiling, so Tony didn't have a lot of room to work. But we finally got it all covered up, and Justin is now safe!

Ruthie LOVES her new cat. She is so sweet with him, and he doesn't mind her prodding or run away from her. On Saturday Justin was getting ready to take a nap, so Ruth went into her room and got her favorite blankie and gave it to Justin. Then, yesterday, she tried to give Justin one of her binkies when he acted like he was going to sleep.

I have never owned a cat before, so I don't have a lot of room for comparison, but I think Justin is the best cat I've ever met. He is so calm and easygoing, and I think he will be perfect for our family. My only complaint so far is that he came into our room meowing very loudly at 6 a.m. today. He also likes to lay on our bed pillows, which I'm not a fan of.

We love our new cat! And if you're in Omaha and are thinking about getting a cat, you should go get one! The Humane Society has 300 cats and kittens right now. Cats 6 months and older are "pick your price" and kittens are two for the price of one. Go adopt a cat!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Diapering developments

Tony and I have made the plunge into the world of cloth diapers. It was something I never thought I'd do, but so far it's going well.

I've thought about switching to cloth for quite a while but never did it because I thought it wouldn't be nearly as convenient or easy as disposables. I didn't think it would be worth my time. A couple of months ago, however, I was reading comments on an LDS message board about the pros and cons of cloth diapers, and after doing some more research I decided to pick a brand and order a bunch. Diapers are really different now than they were when my younger brother used them 20 years ago. They come in cute colors, nice fabrics and they have snaps and velcro. Of course, you can still go with the traditional kind.

I decided to go with pocket diapers, which are basically diapers that have a super absorbent washable insert you stick into a leak-proof cover. The cover isn't at all plastic-y - I actually really like the fabric on the brand we went with, BumGenius.

We also ordered ones that come in one size and can be used for newborns up to toddlers who weigh 30 lbs. They fit Ruth just fine and look like they will be small enough for baby number 2 when s/he comes around. I have to wash the diapers every 2-3 days, which has been the hardest part for me because in the past I haven't been the type to do laundry that frequently. I prefer to do all my laundry on one day. But this has been good for me. Tony put a clothesline in the basement for me so I (or he... he helps me with the laundry, too) can hang them up to dry. My only major complaint is that the cloth diapers aren't as trim as disposables, so they tend to look a little funny under some of her clothes. I still use disposables when she is being babysat and usually when we go out, but I may eventually use only cloth when I'm out running errands. You just stick dirty ones in a plastic bag until you get home. Obviously, for extended trips, I'd use disposables.

I think our investment in cloth diapers was about $300 for 18 diapers. We will probably buy a handful more before Numero Dos arrives to meet the potty demands of a newborn. We purchased a diaper sprayer that attaches to the pipe on our toilet, and that was about $40. It's good for runny poops. I've only had to use it once so far, but it was helpful in getting the diaper clean. I'm sure we will use it much more frequently with a newborn. I also bought two washable trash can liners for the diaper pail, and I think those were $10-$15 each but will last forever. I figured that the investment should pay for itself in about a year. I have only bought one pack of disposable diapers in the last 4 or 5 weeks!

Anyway, just wanted to share my cloth diapering adventures. We find out the gender of Numero Dos on Wednesday! Exciting!!!