Posts filed under ‘Parenting’

Rendezvous

(This is one of the very few mornings I’ve woken up to a sleeping baby, so I thought I should take advantage of a rare opportunity while I still could.)

Hmmm… okay, no excuses today. I’ve been lazy. Busy, sure. But lazy. I don’t know what it is but I haven’t had much of an urge to stay committed to my wee, little blog lately. I used to be all over this thing. Maybe I was on some kind of mission to make myself heard. I dunno. Anyway, I wanna get back in it, I’ve just had other goings on eating up my precious little time.

Phoenix (the crazy baby from outer space) is looking absolutely, 100% per cent, completely and utterly adorable. He may drive us up the wall every single calendar day but he rocks our socks like no other. He’s got some kind of air about him that just sort of resonates something special (or maybe that’s just me being one damn proud mama). We’ve already taken him to the movies twice, by the pools around Treasure Island a few times, down to Boatswain’s Beach, over to my Aunt Barbara’s and envjoyed a sleepover at his grandparents. Been thinking about giving him his own little blog too, starting tomorrow, maybe, which marks his second month birthday anniversary (although he’s technically been eight weeks old since Thursday).


On the subject of blogs et cetera, I’ve also been secretly working on another Silky blog on the sly. One to accompany my Silky namesake on Second Life alone, chock full of way more electro (and nothing but electro) and all about the music and the scene online. Since I haven’t been able to spin for so long now, I’ve been training with Ableton Live in the hopes of getting back in the game with a much bigger, stronger arsenal of mad skills, if ya know what I mean. Ableton Live is simply amazing and there’s no arguing that but my shoddy excuse for a PC just isn’t cutting it anymore. (It’s survived numerous trials, so I can’t really knock Hypersonic for their uber-developed and souped-up Clevos.) So, I might be migrating my DJ business to the Mac for now.

In other news, I’m currently developing a small website for a client outside of Century 21 so if anyone asks, you heard nothing. Just a little something for Tortuga Rum Cake Co., nothing major but we could always do with a few extra funds.

I’ve been missing my friends. I guess D and I both have. Aside from frequent visits from my parents, we’re virtually alone on this island now. Just the three of us. And I’d like to say more about other persons that have recently entered our lives but it seems as though they may be slowly slipping out already. Oh, well. On with the show…

Tuesday, 15 July, 2008 at 7:45 am Leave a comment

Just Another Day In Paradise

I haven’t said much about life in general lately and I’m starting to worry that people out there, whoever you are, might start to think that I’m some kind of bad mother for not mentioning my little bundle o’ joy more often. Well, if only to save myself from public shame, I have to tell you that D and I have been incredibly busy with Phoenix since his arrival, naturally. Which is mostly why I’ve neglected my innocent little blog so much as of late. We barely have time for much else but, to whomever it may concern, I’ll give you a small glimpse into what goes on behind this web-based facade of my silly, misguided existence.


Phoenix had his first doctor’s visit yesterday. At just six weeks old, he was subjected to two injections from a duo of syringes longer than his forearm, administered by some over-the-hill gorilla lady with ashy knuckles and a moustache, with hardly an ounce of tenderness. But, alas, he survived and emerged victorious, now immunised against Hepatitis B and Tuberculosis. We also discovered that he ineed has some mild eczema, so we’ll pick something up for his skin soon enough, although the amazing, natural line of Weleda products we’ve been using has done wonders already. He still gets the odd patch of dry skin here and there and seems to be particulary prone to heat rash but in this hot and humid Caribbean weather, it’s no surprise.

Pookums stands tall and proud at 12lb 5oz now and he’s 100 per cent clinically insane. He enjoys most of his days (and nites) milking Mama D dry and when he’s not satisfying his hunger pains, he’s pooping, peeing, burping, puking, bauling his head off, knocking off a few rounds with D’s tits, dancing to Rollergirl, staring at the bed head, smiling, squeaking, squirming, attempting to crawl, struggling to make sense of my crazy curls, immersed in the TV and/or computer screen, brushing up on his boxing, pulling off an uncannily convincing Popeye impression, shoving his feet into my diaphragm, dozing off or demanding more boob juice. Oh and, every once in a while, he’ll sleep. He also makes a habit of throwing his own parties at the witching hour every nite, at which we are always present (D provides the beverages). Breakfast begins at approximately 5am, 6am and 7am every morning, collectively and then it’s time for his daily exercise routine, which consists of push-ups (or pull-ups, as the case may be), sit-ups and various stretches.

So, yes, he’s doing just fine.


Lately, we’ve been playing the typical famiy role, performing the daily grind, so to speak, until there’s enough money saved up in my pension for us to extract and head back to Arizona, finally. We wake up not so bright and early every morning, tend to the master, enjoy a bowl of diced organic bananas and/or apples with pomegranate, acai or blueberry granola and soy yoghurt, feed the scraps to the neighbourly iguana on our balcony, check out the latest Wii updates, dabble on Second Life a little, Pookums permitting and maybe indulge in a little television or music. I’ve been working mostly from home, as I barely do anything at the office anymore besides sit around, eroding in the dark and I can perform just fine on the Mac right here at home and still spend my free time helping out Mama D with the little monster.

Occasionally, we’ll trek down to the beach, Phoenix in stroller, though he doesn’t seem to care of the saltwater very much so sometimes we’ll simply venture downstairs to the nearby swimming pools visible from our balcony and wade in the smaller tub for a while. He seems to have taken quite a liking to water, provided the temperature is just right. So much so that we can now comfortably bathe with him in the bathroom and scrub him down in unison, even feeding him right there and then should he feel the urge to suckle. We always take him shopping with us and tomorrow we’ll even make an attempt to make a trip to the cinema with the grandparents to watch Wall-E, if it’s even playing here yet.

And that’s about our life as it stands right now. We’ve been a little more preoccupied with Second Life since he’s entered our lives and we’re ever so slowly getting back into the groove and I’m hoping to start spinning again soon, should I find some way to do so using Ableton Live (I’ve grown tired of SAM). In the meantime, I’m not sure what to do with this little corner of cyberspace. I’m not even sure if I’m making the least bit of difference with all my posts on environmentalism, veganism, transgenderism and the sort although I’ll still continue forward on my quest to convince the mass populace to wake the fuck up.

But baby gets what baby wants.

Friday, 27 June, 2008 at 6:21 pm Leave a comment

Phoenix Rising

I’m just gonna come right out and say it. We have a baby. And here he is:

Li\'l Phoenix

Isn’t he just downright gorgeous? Every time I see his little face, I find myself at a loss for words. But, at some point, I need to smear that big grin off of my face and blab on about and glorify him a little bit. I mean, come on, it’s a blog after all. Okay, so let’s get straight to the mock meat of the story…

A little over a week ago now, after waiting anxiously for days and days for his much anticipated arrival and numerous false predictions, fruitless contractions and a few days leave, D and I went back to the hospital for another check-up and such. The projected due dates spanned somewhere between the 6th and the 12th and by the 14th, we were starting to get a little frustrated. So, our doctor started poking around down there, which I’m sure pulled a plug or twisted a knob somewhere, as not too long after, once we were settled in at home again, the contractions started coming hard and fast. At which point, we both started to scramble.

Packing up everything we thought we’d need for our stay, timing contractions with our handy dandy video camera, running through our checklists and making all sorts of calls to family and friends, it was pretty damn exciting to say the least. Although… when we finally made our way over there, courtesy of Nana, the doctor’s claimed she was far from going into labour. So they kicked us all out! Well, everyone but D. Their reasoning was, because she wasn’t in “heavy labour” just yet, that not even I was allowed to stay. So they sent us packing and I had to fold my arms and grunt all the way back home by my lonesome while D had to stick it out in some horribly lit hospital room by herself with Phoenix ready to pop at any moment.

Come next morning though, once I made it down there again, she was starting to feel the symptoms pretty well. And by that I mean she was fucking breaking down in pain, gasping for air and suffering with back pain and vicious contractions. Still, the nurses/midwives claimed she had much longer to go and consoled her with statements such as, “Oh, you think this is pretty bad? You haven’t felt anything yet!” So encouraging. As yet another nurse came to examine her with a rickety old fetal monitor from the better part of the 70s that could barely keep time, she announced that she had hours left to go before she would go into delivery and that the labour was only just commencing.

…She was barely out the door after that before D went all wide-eyed, staring down the spontaneous river of blood meandering between her legs, to which the nurse responded with, “Oh, she’s ready to deliver!” Naturally, I had my concerns about the accuracy of their assessments but you know… we’re about to have a baby!!!

I’ll skip the gory details at this point but what I really need to ask is: is it okay for a nurse/midwife to perform an episiotomy without consent from the labouring mother? I swear, had I not been there to practically tear the knife away from her vagina, they would’ve sliced her before D had any idea what was going on. These idiots wouldn’t even give me gloves or mask or anything even when I requested them outright.

Anyway, after bitching back and forth with the nurses whilst D’s squealing in agony, I told them to shut the hell up and let her get to work. They didn’t think she could do it; kept telling her she was doing it all wrong, that she wasn’t even trying. And then, about 10min into the delivery… she pops him right out, umbilical cord and all! We watched him flop onto that hospital bed in all his bloody glory. 8lbs 7.5oz strong, 54cm long at 12:59pm on the 15th of May, 2008 with an Apgar score of 10. Healthy as can be.

He started breastfeeding immediately. Had some minor issues getting cholostrom at first and he suffered with a little jaundice from lack of sunlight but once we brought him home (after D spent a lovely three days extra in the hospital), he was feeling just fine. Now he can’t get enough of Mama D’s milk (and I mean he really, really can’t) and he’s keeping us busy constantly. And we love him. We love him to bits.

So, you can imagine where I’ve been for the past few weeks, although a few other items have been eating up my “free time”. Anyway, fuck… we have a baby. Our own flesh and blood. Oh… wow. Congratulations to us.

Happy Birthday, Phoenix.

Thursday, 22 May, 2008 at 4:06 pm Leave a comment

Oh, Baby!

Phoenix’ Stuff

Check it out! Is our baby gonna look snazzy or what? This is the little collection we’ve put together from Speesees and I don’t know about you but I’m squealing from the cute factor. It’s all fabulous and, of course, all organic. Should be here in about two weeks or so.

Have a gander at our baby registry here:
https://www.speesees.com/store/giftregs.php?eventid=109&wlid=e8f7d988dd5ff5bac564e298d4caa98d

Thursday, 20 March, 2008 at 7:03 pm Leave a comment

The Weekend Starts Here

So there’s not much in the way of news per se but that doesn’t mean we haven’t been up to anything. I’ve even had to blow off a few friends just because I’m so incredibly busy with everything else.

We just recently purchased a hefty serving of baby clothing, toys and accessories from Speesees and I can’t wait for them to get here. Cost about a third of my paycheque but it’s definitely worth it. We’ve also put together a baby registry at a local childrens store and we’re even working on putting together a small baby shower to celebrate Phoenix’ arrival, complete with Veganese cooking, recycled fanfare and environmentalism video entertainment. Oh yeah, we’re taking full advantage of this affair.

This parental stuff is all well and good but I’m seriously missing out on going out and having some real fun, clubber’s style. We tried a month or so ago but it’s just way too late in the game to socialise like we used to. No drinks, no drugs, no wild sex parties… not yet. Yeah, needless to say, we have other priorities. (I’m starting to realise how much I’m beginning to sound like a mother.) We’re devising some sort of plan to give us a little flexibility though. Breastpumps, babysitters and hopefully, the start of another (successful) polyamourous relationship with a certain special someone. We’ll be all over Phoenix when he first gets here, sure but that doesn’t mean we can’t get a little wild every once in a while.

I’ve been struggling to upload some videos of D and I from Phoenix for forever now but damn, my connection is crappier than I thought. Google isn’t cooperating very well so hopefully I can find some other viable option. I desperately need to take some new pictures anyway. My blonde hair is just about completely gone now anyway (and I so miss it).

Tomorrow begins our much needed long weekend though, kicking off with Good Friday. It’s really a shame we can’t comfortably cooperate in celebrating with other Christians but it’s not like we’re that devout either. There’s just too much conspiracy surrounding the good book for me to take anything ti says with much more than a grain of salt these days. We’ll probably just take some time to laze around, cuddle up and watch a few good flicks. Maybe hit the beach or play tourist for a while. Happy Easter, kittens!

Thursday, 20 March, 2008 at 6:13 pm Leave a comment

Green Showers

Green Baby Showers
Presented by Better.tv
Behind the Scenes at Sheryl Crow’s Green Baby Shower
Presented by Wee Generation

Friday, 7 March, 2008 at 11:18 pm Leave a comment

How To Green Your Baby

by Kathreen Ricketson, Canberra, Australia

htggreen_baby_banner.jpg

What’s the Big Deal?

A new baby entering your life can create an enormous number of unexpected changes. Along with the little one comes a whole new category of things to purchase—not only the obvious large items like furniture and diapers, but also all the unforeseen extras that seem to accumulate. While having a baby is consumer heaven, the key is to not be gulled into an unnecessary buying frenzy. In truth, a baby has very minimal needs. On the flip side, there is more to a sustainable life with your baby than cloth diapers, organic baby food, and fair-trade clothing…read on for more.

Top 10 Tips

1. Diapers (aka Nappies)

Studies are divided on the subject of environmental impact of disposables vs. cloth. But knowing that your baby will use approx 6,000 diapers before toilet training, and that disposable diapers take 200-500 years to decompose, this is certainly a key issue to ponder. Washing cloth diapers takes water, energy, and chemicals (not to mention time), but you might want to consider the benefits of a laundering service. One study has found that home-washing cloth diapers has only 53% of the ecological footprint of disposables, and if you use a diaper laundering service that impact is halved again.

Cloth: Reusable diapers aren’t what they used to be and the days of diaper pins are all but bygone. Go for fitted cloth diapers with Velcro or snap closures for convenience, made from an eco-friendly material such as hemp, bamboo, or organic cotton. Use an organic wool cover that is both warm and breathable, minimizing diaper rash and cold bottoms at night. Use either removable or flushable liners and when washing either use a laundering service or wash at home at lower temperatures. With a new baby around you’ll probably notice a lot more laundry piling up, so make sure you’ve optimized your setup with an efficient machine and non-toxic detergent. If you can line-dry, that is ideal, but don’t bother ironing.

Biodegradable diapers: Made with plant-based plastics (also known as bioplastics), these diapers non-petroleum based and are compostable. While these have been found not to break down under landfill conditions, there are other options to compost them such as using a composting toilet, an earthworm system, or a highly active and properly conditioned composting area. Hybrid diapers, like gDiapers, have removable inserts that can safely biodegrade when flushed.

2. Breast or bottle

This one’s a no-brainer: breastfeeding is best. It’s free, has health benefits for mother and baby, has no environmental impact, and is a precious bonding experience. However, in our commerce-driven society there are products for everything, and breastfeeding is no exception. For breast pads, ditch disposables and try re-usable organic cotton or wool felt pads. While there are many great, organic nipple creams available, some locally produced olive oil or organic lanolin does a great job.

If bottle feeding becomes a necessity, pumping your own is the first choice. Beyond that, using a fair-trade organic infant formula is preferable. If this is neither affordable nor accessible, then the next best thing is to ensure the brand of formula you buy is from a company not profiteering from marketing their product to developing countries. These companies disregard or try to get around the marketing code set by The World Health Assembly.

3. Solid foods

At about six months, babies starts to eat real food. Rice cereal and mushy veggies turn to combinations of fish, meat, eggs, legumes, and vegetables—yep, a regular person’s diet. Buying jars of food is sure convenient, but as an adult you don’t live out of jars, so why should your baby? For those occasional situations, purchase organic or fresh frozen baby foods. Otherwise, make your own. Cook up veggies, casseroles, or tofu and lentils, whatever is your thing, and freeze it in tiny containers or ice cube trays ready to take out and defrost when needed. (Be sure you discuss any concerns over dietary requirements with your health professional)

4. Clothing

All those designer baby clothes are cute and oh so hard to resist in their fruity colors. But be careful. Not only does a baby grow out of clothes amazingly fast, they are constantly sending bodily fluids flying onto those precious outfits. The baby couture might be better replaced with convenient one-piece suits in practical white terry cloth. Choosing organic hemp or cotton, bamboo or wool fabrics made without toxic chemicals are best against a baby’s sensitive skin and last longer with the constant washing. Second-hand clothing is the cheapest and most sustainable option. Get hand-me-downs from friends and family or look in thrift shops, Craigslist, or Freecycle.

5. Body care and bath time

It’s very easy to get sucked into the constant advertising of baby powders, creams, and lotions. But the best baby lotion is plain old olive oil—cheap, natural, and un-perfumed. As for other products, keep it as natural, organic, and fragrance-free as possible. For more on this, take a look at How to Green Women’s Personal Care.

6. Laundry and washing

It’s quite possible that our war on germs is actually making things worse. Studies have shown that children brought up in over-cleaned houses are more likely to develop allergies, asthma, or eczema. The best thing you can do for sensitive baby skin is not to cover it with synthetic chemicals. Wash nappies with pure soap and warm water. Make your own non-toxic cleansers with simple ingredients such as baking soda and vinegar. For more, see How to Green Your Cleaning.

7. Toys

Get back to basics and try old fashioned wooden toys and organic cotton or homemade teddies. Because babies put most things in their mouths, go as natural as possible, then when baby is a little older, get hold of second-hand toys. Also aim for toys that helps build a child’s bond with nature and the natural world. The sad truth is that the average American kindergartener can identify several hundred logos only a few leaves from plants and trees.

8. Furniture and accessories

Babies don’t need much—a secure place to sleep, a car seat, a high chair, and a way to be trundled around. Go for second-hand furniture, everything except cot mattresses (some research suggests a link between second-hand cot mattresses and sudden infant death syndrome) and car seats, (which can have invisible accident damage). If you buy new furniture, purchase high quality, durable pieces made of sustainable, low-toxicity materials. Think about some alternatives to the regular old wooden baby bed; try using an organic cotton baby hammock or a cot that extends into a bed and lasts 6-7 years. The most ethical option for stroller (pram) is recycled. For more on furniture, see our guide.

9. Household environment

It goes without saying that alcohol consumption and cigarette smoking while pregnant are bad for a baby. But it is also very important to avoid exposure to the synthetic chemicals contained in everyday products such as paints, carpet, furniture, bedding, and pesticides. When decorating the nursery, use natural and low-VOC paints and don’t lay new carpet before the baby is born. Suspicious new items should at least be left outside to off-gas for a few days before bringing inside.

10. Wipes and liners

Diaper wipes and liners commonly include propylene glycol (a binder also found in antifreeze), parabens (a family of compounds commonly used as preservatives) and perfume, which can be made from up to 600 different chemicals. Try using good natural organic cotton wool and water and avoid disposable changing mats and perfumed diaper bags.

gdiaper.jpg
(The Cradle to Cradle certified gDiaper)

Hard Core

1. To have babies at all?

With the world population estimated to pass the nine billion mark by mid-century, the sheer number of people on the planet is one of our biggest risks. While the biggest population booms are happening in the less wealthy developing countries, North Americans and Western Europeans have a per-person environmental footprint that is far above world average. It’s a big decision and a touchy subject, but the number of children you have, if any at all, is an enormous factor in your impact on the Earth. Adopting kids is also a profound contribution to a sustainable world.

2. Try attachment parenting

Sleeping with and wearing your baby, while not for everyone, is said to promote a strong bond leading to a sensitive, emotionally aware child.

3. Avoid using diapers altogether

Elimination communication is a technique of timing, signals, cues, and intuition to help baby/infant express his or her poo-related needs. This is best begun before six months of age, and while it is most commonly used in third-world countries where parents are in constant contact with their children, it has been used in the West with some success.

4. Shower with your baby

Save water and enjoy precious bonding time by holding your baby while in the shower.

5. Get crafty

Make your own diapers, breast pads, toys, and baby clothes. There are plenty of Web sites offering free patterns and advice on DIY baby goods (see below for more). Also, don’t forget about your local craft shop or group for advice and materials.

6. Avoid unnecessary gadgets

Monitors, motorized rockers, musical mobiles and the like are tempting, and can be useful or educational, but keeping the baby-related consumerism in check is a wise move. Ask yourself if you really need them? If so, try for secondhand items first.

7. Swapping

So many baby things only get used for a few months, it seems mad to buy them new, (e.g. strollers, beds, playpens, highchairs, etc). Buy secondhand, beg, borrow , or swap with friends and family to find what you need. Also remember community fairs, garage sales, and online swap sites.

By the Numbers

1. The average baby uses approx 6,000 diapers before potty training.

2. Petroleum-based disposable diapers take between 200 and 500 years to decompose.

3. Disposables used per day: Australia uses 2.2 million, Japan 6.7 million, the UK 9 million, and the USA 49 million.

4. A home-washed cloth diaper has only 53% of the ecological footprint of disposables, and a nappy laundry service has a mere 37% of that footprint.

5. Americans spend an estimated $1.4 billion on complicated births due to smoking while pregnant.

6. Disposable diapers contain chemicals that were banned in the 1980s in women’s tampons, but continue to be used today to improve absorbency in children’s diapers.

tripp-trapp.jpg(The Tripp Trapp chair from Stokke is a great example of adaptable furniture)

From the Archives

Diapers are one of the biggest issues when thinking about having an eco-friendly baby. Check out our explorations on diaper alternatives like The Nature Nappy, The Cradle to Cradle-certified gDiaper, Wam Bamboo Nappies, and Eenee eco-diapers.

Here, readers offer comments on finding a stroller without the toxins.

Lovely eco friendly furniture options include Stokke Tripp Trapp chair, and the eco crib from Mothercare.

For baby food, check out Liz Hurley’s line of organic natural foods and organic baby food from Ulula.

Find more on eco friendly baby creams, lotions, and powders from sources like Sage Baby, Avalon Organics, Erbaviva, and Munchskins.

And if you were intrigued about the no-diaper solution, read our story on potty whispering and this earlier story on diaper-free babies.

For clothes and cloths, go organic and get back to basics. Check out hemp towels from Transylvania and organic baby gear from Nui Organics.

If you want to buy just one perfect soft organic teddy, check out our top five organic soft toys.

Baby furniture from Nurseryworks is handmade and highly morphable.

E Magazine takes a hard look at raising a healthy child in a toxic world.

further reading

Vegetarian Baby is a site for parents of vegetarian and vegan children under three, with topics on pregnancy, nutrition, and products.

The Guardian has a charming article entitled “How to stop your baby wreaking eco havoc.”

Organic Baby is a New Zealand site offering guides on safe, natural parenting.

Kids Health provides doctor-approved health information about children from before birth through adolescence.

Baby Center is an Australian site with information on shopping for your eco baby.

Information on formula marketing around the world can be found from the International Baby Food Action Network.

Baby Milk Action and The Australian Breastfeeding Association have more in depth information on feeding your baby.

The Real Diaper Association has hard facts on the impacts of disposable diapers and the benefits of cloth.

Colorado department of public health and the environment has facts about smoking while pregnant.

321434800_fd28cc1944_o.jpg
(A baby next to his daily diaper pile. Image credit: Sean Dreilinger)

Where to Get it!

Food

Do It Yourself

baby-toys.jpg


Cited from: http://www.treehugger.com/files/2007/05/how-to-green-your-baby.php

Thursday, 6 March, 2008 at 4:34 am 1 comment


Misadventures Of A Vagrant T-Girl

There's plenty fun to be had. From the Cayman Islands, to London, to Phoenix and back again, Silky's been there, done that. But life's for the living and I ain't dead yet. Making vegans look cool, trannies sound sexy and delivering shit hot Electro is my deal. Loving my beautiful wife, nurturing my baby boy Phoenix and making my small mark on this jaded world of post-consumerism is my mantra. Friends, welcome. Guests, indulge. There's plenty fun to be had.

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Birthdate: 19th February, 1983 Nationality: Caymanian Star Sign: Aquarius/Pisces Orientation: Bisexual Diet: Vegan Occupation: Graphic Designer WiiMail: w8848634343789919@wii.com
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