Thursday, April 19, 2007


Wow. I am so amazed at the incredible "lactivists" (breastfeeding activists) on Mothering magazine's website (

Recently, a mom posted there about how she and her sister are staying at the Ronald McDonald House in Houston while her sister's son is recovering from brain surgery. AND THEY WERE HARRASSED ABOUT NURSING IN THE COMMON ROOM! How insane is that?! The poor kid is 17 months old and healing from brain surgery and people are kvetching that they're "uncomfortable" with that baby nursing in "public"?! Have these idiots heard of turning away? Reading a newspaper? Not being so interested in other people's business? Leaving the room? Do they have a CLUE that this is what breasts are for?!

RMH has gotten an earful from pro-nursing folks (we live in a bizarre world that there can possibly be people who are anti-....), and today there was an article in the New York Times:

Monday, April 16, 2007

Diaper-free Baby

Yay! We took the plunge a week ago. We have used Elimination Communiation with Ilana since her birth--listening to her cues (like getting squirmy or more verbal) and our intuition, and taking her to the potty or toilet to make. She has been in cloth diapers full-time, but as a backup to EC. She's been about 50% for dry diapers.

Well, it's a week now for us where she is diaper-free at home and in a backup cloth diaper when we're out, and I am so proud of her and us for doing this. She's doing great! And I am getting the hang of NOT putting diapers on automatically! It's nice that we really think about when we want her in diapers (like during dinner last night, when she hadn't peed in forever, it was late, and I was reeeeally hungry).

On Friday, I took her many times to make with nada coming out. Then she crawled to the potty on her own and did make! This happened twice and was very heartening.

I'd say we have about three misses a day, but with a fair bit of "communication" going on. Yesterday, for example, she was playing with her toys and stopped and looked at me with a very concerned look on her face. "Oh, do you have to make?" I asked, as I picked her up and carried a very pishy baby to the bathroom. Well, at least it doesn't happen too often!

She also sometimes uses sign language to say that she has to make. It's very cute to see. The sign is the letter "T" for toilet shaken back and forth, but she holds her hand in a very specific, curved way and shakes it. I love the inner genius in our very young kids :)

Sunday, April 01, 2007

One Year Old....

Wow. This past weekend was Ilana's Hebrew birthday. So, while the right number of suns have not yet passed since her birth, the correct number of moons have! She was born on Shabbat HaGadol, the Shabbat right before Passover, and it's funny how I have such a strong connection to that time this year, and almost none to the date of April 7....

I love how this year the timing is very similar to last year (except I think that the first night of Pesach last year was a Tuesday, not a Monday like this year). No matter how late we stay up dealing with the kitchen, it feels like such a piece of cake (SCD Pesach cake?!) b/c we don't have a newborn, I haven't been ordered by the midwife to stay upstairs except for appearing at the sedars, and Chana is not sick!

So Miss Ilana celebrated by climbing the entire staircase with me in back of her, climbing three stairs (without me in back of her) and falling down (I was in the other room and a friend here for Shabbat lunch forgot to keep an eye on her 100% of the time) and getting her first facial bruise (aww, good for her!). She also ate homemade apple sauce and some rice cake crumbs. She can pull herself to standing and has six teeth now.

We all wore party hats for Shabbat dinner and Shabbat lunch. Batsheva, Chana and PB gave brachas to her on Friday night. It was so sweet to hear the blessings they said. PB said, "I hope you always have good sleep", while B and C wished her "another 120 years" with all good things in them.

Richard and Leah came for lunch and we all talked about last year, and how they heard about her birth. Batsheva and Chana went to shul to tell Leah, and B. tried to fool her that the baby had been a boy. Leah just insisted that it was a girl, though :). Richard remembered going over to Sam as soon as he came into shul and asking what happened. Sam said that he ignored everyone and concentrated on davening. Then, when it was time for announcements, he sidled up to Andy and asked him to announce a mazal tov to our family!

After Shabbat (last year), my brother and Sis-in-law, Jay and Kim, came over. Then, around 11 pm, Sam's mom, Chellie, and his stepfather, Joey, came over. I was so tired, but there's nothing like seeing a grandma coo over a new grandbaby.

The next morning, Kim came back with Joshua and Rebecca. Josh put Ilana on his hand and held her. (Which brings me a flashback of Jay holding Josh like that, except that Josh [who is now something like 6'3"] was in his little lamb coat with the ears and tail!). Later, Heidi came, and Nancy, Efraim and Chana Nasia. Chana Masha was just lying in bed next to me, kind of zoned out. Efraim ( made a wonderful vegetable lasanga. Nancy and Heidi, who had just met, even bonded by going to Costco together.

I definitely have been thinking about how our friends and family saved us with their wonderful cooking. Rissy, Suzi, Tova R, my aunt Paula (AP)....So many kind people sent over kugel or matza lasagna or soup. AP even kindly accepted my family descending on her erev Pesach so that my kids could see her grandkids. Then, of course, they got hungry, which is really a bother erev pesach! But she dealt with everything with such grace.

And then Jen and Shmuley took the girls to the Big Apple Circus during Chol HaMoed....And Chana Milman and Menucha took them to the zoo. What amazing friends and relatives we have.

It's been quite a year. Couldn't have made it through without such great love and support.