Archive | September, 2013

Frugal Things I Did Last Week

24 Sep
Eli enjoying his new saddle.

Eli enjoying his new saddle.

We purchased a used pony saddle for Elijah.  Just look at that face!  🙂  He is blessed to be able to ride often at my parent’s house.  I can’t wait to go riding with him next year when I am not expecting!

I passed along a couple of bags of books and clothes to a couple of friends.  I always appreciate hand-me-downs for Eli so I try to do the same.  By the way does anyone have a suggestion for where to buy new jeans for a super skinny little boy?  We are going to have to buy new jeans for the winter since I have only found 2 pairs at yard sales/thrift stores all year.  😦

Brandon, Eli & I attended a free Play-dough Party at our local library.  We all had a nice time.

I made Cole-Slaw and a 7 Layer Salad for my brother’s birthday party.  There was a mistake made and his cake was tiny so I also made a Chocolate Eclair Cake at the last-minute.  Thankfully I had all of the ingredients on hand since I always purchase the ingredients during my monthly Aldi trip.

We took snacks & drinks along to 2 doctor appointments this past week.  Not only does this save lots of money but we are eating healthier snacks.

The hubby was able to attend last week’s Bengal’s game for free.  A friend called him at the last-minute and asked if he wanted to go!  I was so excited for him!  I had actually tried to get tickets because the game was on a Monday night.  Usually all of the games are at 1:00 on Sunday.  As a pastor he just can’t make it to one of those Sunday games.  The tickets were just too expensive for us right now (even as an early birthday present) so it was such a treat for him.  What a kind blessing from the Lord!

My aunt gave us peppers, tomatoes, and green beans from her garden.  I will be freezing the peppers to use this winter.  I made a batch of homemade Tomato Basil Soup (Crock-Pot) for dinner this evening.  I cooked a huge pot of green beans for our church’s fall festival on Sunday.

I sewed a flannel sheet for baby girl and 2 sets of nursing pads using scrap flannel material I had on hand.  I also added pink baby rick-rack to a side-snap shirt that was Eli’s as a baby.

After months of writing letters I finally had a large medical bill processed correctly.  HOORAY!!!!  This saved us hundreds of dollars!  Always check your medical bills against your EOB.

Elijah picked four sunflowers for me from our yard.  We made a nice small bouquet to decorate our kitchen table.  The sunflowers are a dwarf variety to use in bouquets.

I picked up bread at a bread outlet that I pass on the way to my ob office.  Although I usually make bread it is one of those things that I have let slide all summer since I am expecting.  🙂

What frugal activities did you do last week?  

Newborn Cloth Diaper Stash

18 Sep
Our Newborn Cloth Diaper Stash

Our Newborn Cloth Diaper Stash

 

Call me crazy or insane but one of the things I am looking forward to is cloth diapering our new little girl as a newborn.  I have always loved cloth diapers and I cannot wait to see our sweet little girl in a teeny tiny cloth diaper!  🙂  We didn’t start using cloth diapers with Eli until he was 4 weeks old since we moved when he was only 2 weeks old.  Looking back it probably would not have been that crazy to use cloth diapers.  We ended up spending tons of money on diapers the first month because we had to buy expensive diapers for sensitive skin.  If we were going to use disposable diapers for the newborn stage I would definitely want to use chlorine free diapers which cost even more (twice the cost of generic disposables).  I am guessing these would set us back about $148 for the first month.  One option that I looked into was the possibility of using a newborn cloth diaper rental service but that would cost around $220.  We would like to have more children in the future so we opted to purchase a newborn stash that can be used for future children.  Our budget for our entire stash was $100.  I can honestly say that I had a lot of fun watching for sales and purchasing used cloth diapers over the summer.  That said I thought it would be fun to share what our newborn cloth diaper stash looks like.  I plan on doing an update in a few months to share which newborn cloth diapers worked best for us.

Our Stash of Prefolds & Covers

Our Stash of Prefolds & Covers

Many people choose to use either pocket diapers or prefolds with covers.  We are planning on using both systems.  Prefolds and covers are by far the most economical option.  We purchased a dozen orange edged sized newborn (6-10 lbs) Cloth-Eez Prefolds from Green Mountain Diapers and a dozen yellow edged sized small (10-15 lbs) Cloth-Eez prefolds.  Our covers include: Imse Vimse Size Newborn, 1 cover I made using the New Conceptions Diaper Cover with leg gusset, 1 handmade cover I made trying to copy the Bummis Super Brite Cover-I doubt this will really work, 1 DIY Cover using the Babyville Boutique size newborn pattern, 2 Thirsties Duo Size 1 covers, and 2 Bummis Super Brite Newborns.  To me most of the covers (except the Bummis Super Brites) look really big.  I wouldn’t be surprised if only the Bummis fit well for the first couple of weeks.

Pocket Diapers & Fitted Diapers I Made

Pocket Diapers & Fitted Diapers I Made

I made two pocket diapers using the Green Pepper Pattern F708 in Size Newborn.  On the second cover I made the elastic in the leg larger.  I also made 5 fitted diapers using the Kwik Sew Pattern 3690.  Thankfully I was able to try these on a friend’s baby and adjusted the elastic around the legs.  I did not sew a large stash of either of these since I am not 100% sure they will be a good fit.

 

The stash of All in One Diapers I made for Eli using Kwik Sew's pattern.

The stash of All in One Diapers I made for Eli using Kwik Sew’s pattern.

Before Eli was born I sewed 15 All-in-One diapers using Kwik Sew 3690.  Unfortunately these ran really small and I was hardly able to use them at all after all of that work! 😦  I don’t really know if these will fit baby girl at all unless she has really skinny legs.  I’m not actually planning on these fitting but if they do that would be great!  These diapers also took FOREVER to dry so I’m sure they will be the ones I reach for last.

Pocket Diapers or All in One Diapers are much more expensive than going the prefolds and covers route.  I chose to purchase 1/2 of our stash in AIO diapers because my husband likes them much better.  (I also got a wonderful deal on them used.)  I am also counting on having help from family when the baby comes (Brandon’s mom is coming to stay after the baby is born and I am sure my mom and sisters will help from time to time).  I wanted to make it easier for them to help me change diapers.  🙂

Our Stash of Pocket Diapers

Our Stash of Pocket Diapers

I spent lots of time researching which aio/pocket diapers worked best and I think it just depends on your child.  We have 12 Bumgenius AIO XS diapers (yellow, blue, & teal in the picture on the left and right).  The reason I bought so many of these was simply because I got a great deal by purchasing a lot of them.  In the middle column starting at the top I have 2 Grovia Diapers, 1 XS Fuzzibunz Pocket Diaper, 1 Alva Baby (a China diaper), and 2 Lil’ Joey diapers.  As you can see I tried hard to keep things pretty gender neutral for the most part.  It is so hard though!  🙂

I am also planning on sewing some fleece doublers in case any of these diapers need more absorbency.  We will also be using cloth wipes.  I have some leftover from Eli and am in the process of sewing a dozen more from scrap fabric.

Have you ever cloth diapered a newborn?  Any tips, advice, etc?  

 

Pregnancy Update: 33 Weeks & Sewing Update

4 Sep
The blanket I made for Baby Girl.  We have decided to go with Elephants, Giraffes, & Owls for the nursery.

The blanket I made for Baby Girl. We have decided to go with Elephants, Giraffes, & Owls for the nursery.  Notice the cute little tag I found. 

Now that it is finally September I feel like I am finally getting close to having this little girl!  She will be here sometime next month.  🙂

I had a doctor appointment last week and the baby sounded great.  She is quite the wiggle worm when it comes to the Doppler.  My sister Katelyn actually went with me and got to hear the heart beat which was neat.  As of last week baby girl was head down and locked in the pelvis.  Let’s just hope she stays that way!  (Elijah had to be delivered by C-section because he turned breech at 39 weeks.)  I can definitely tell a change in her movements since she switched to the head down position.  I have now gained 8 pounds this pregnancy which I am pleased with.  I sure look like I have gained a lot more though!

I have been having a little trouble with some leg pain in my left leg due to a vein that sticks out a little bit.  It has been that way since college but it has gotten worse with pregnancy this time.  The doctor recommended compression stockings.  I didn’t realize how vain I am as a person until I had to start wearing them!  🙂  They are awful in many ways (& cost a fortune) but they do help my leg not to hurt.  I think I have been much more active exercising since I started wearing them which is really good.  I really want to stay in shape for the birth.

Brandon & I toured the hospital where I will be giving birth.  I was very pleased with the tour and look forward to delivering there soon.  It was actually much nicer and had more amenities than I expected.  There are plenty of restaurants right next to the hospital so Brandon can get his fast food fix while we are there.  We also went on a fancy date afterwards to Red Lobster which was wonderful.  🙂  I have such a sweet husband.

My doctor did allow me to attend a girl’s get away in Gatlinburg, TN this past weekend.  Hooray!  I missed my boys like crazy but it was SO much fun to hang out with a bunch of girls I went to college with and rarely see because we all live so far away from one another.  I even rode the Sky Lift!  We went to celebrate the fact that one of my sweet friends is getting married in October (less than 2 weeks before baby girl is due).  I really hope I get to attend her wedding.  It was kind of funny because I was pregnant the last time I went on a girl’s trip with this bunch of girls.  🙂

I have started making head way on a couple of sewing projects for baby girl.

The flannel swaddler I made from Simplicity 2165.

The flannel swaddler I made.

I used Simplicity 2165 to sew the swaddler out of flannel.  I made this pattern last year twice for two friends who were expecting.  It was pretty easy to sew the third time around.

I sewed two burp cloths this week.  These are contoured and will not slip off your shoulder.

I sewed two burp cloths this week. These are contoured and will not slip off your shoulder.

I’m hoping to start cooking some freezer meals this month to eat after the baby comes.  Do you have any great freezer recipes to share?