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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Parenting tips from a teen who grew up going to festivals with her offbeat mama

Among my peers it is rare to find child-parent relationships with total-honesty policies, where the child is given much more self-responsibility than in the majority of child-parent relationships and the parents aren't afraid to speak openly of how life is equal parts pain and pleasure.
It's not often you'll find a mother who, when their child reaches the volatile and nutty teenage years, will sit a child down and say, "Look, I know you're going to be experimenting with drugs soon. That's fine — I only ask that you try whatever drug you want to try with me first, so we can make sure you have a good experience and are in a safe place and I can take care of you."

A potty training readiness checklist

"Physical signs

Is coordinated enough to walk, and even run, steadily.

Urinates a fair amount at one time.

Has regular, well-formed bowel movements at relatively predictable times.

Has "dry" periods of at least three or four hours, which shows that his bladder muscles are developed enough to hold urine.

Behavioral signs

Can sit down quietly in one position for two to five minutes.

Can pull his pants up and down.

Dislikes the feeling of wearing a wet or dirty diaper.

Shows interest in others' bathroom habits (wants to watch you go to the bathroom or wear underwear).

Gives a physical or verbal sign when he's having a bowel movement such as grunting, squatting, or telling you.

Demonstrates a desire for independence.

Takes pride in his accomplishments.

Isn't resistant to learning to use the toilet.

Is in a generally cooperative stage, not a negative or contrary one.

Cognitive signs

Can follow simple instructions, such as "go get the toy."

Understands the value of putting things where they belong.

Has words for urine and stool.

Understands the physical signals that mean he has to go and can tell you before it happens or even hold it until he has time to get to the potty."

Monday, December 20, 2010

Baby wearing in different cultures!!!

Babywearing in many cultures:  Were I could I found locals in videos.
Modern carriers have a lot more belts and buckles but aren't better than the traditionals.   I've used the kanga style (really its just a large piece of thin cloth -- a sarong!) It really is as easy as it looks.  I used a small sarong I had lying around.   It is cheap, versatile, easy on/off, and is very secure.    I think it is great for when you need to put the baby on and off multiple times for pottying or different household tasks, etc.    The Rebozos and other wraps are definitely very secure and warm.    I found it invaluable in the winter when we were traveling -- and people are not inclined to touch your baby if its secure in a wrap.    The mei tai (other aisan baby carriers such as an onbuhimo is similar except it uses rings, narrow or wide podaegis, and hmongs also follow the same principle except they have only 2 straps not four) is somewhere between a wrap and a kanga as far as ease.  I like it on a shopping trip.   Extra security with the ties and not as warm as the moby, but warmer than a thin 100% cotton kanga (I got mine for $20-25 on Amazon/Ebay).   Indonesian Selendangs ($20 at HUGS -- its a good cause -- are beautiful and are garmets like kangas and sarongs-- not as wide as kangas but longer,  and much shorter than the moby so quicker to use.   Hot slings and ring slings are based on traditional selendangs/rebozos in hip carry position -- the rings take the place of the slip knot in a ring sling; the pouch in a modern hot sling takes the place of the knots/rings by permanent sewing into shape.
Really, all the old styles are very practical for the places they come from!   A simple cloth, towel, or beach towel and even an old sheet works fine so you don't necessarily have to spend money.  Look at the videos under "babywearing for free" at the end.    In a real evacuation type emergency even pants and shirts can be used.     Proper positioning is important.
                                                Read:     Frog_Flex_When_Carrying_baby_not_Crotch_Dangle

A wonderful site full of info on attachment parenting and more.