Some experiments going on around here:
1. Elimination Communication with Pud. I’m so proud to announce it’s going well. Everyday, we learn new cues and ways to communicate with Pud about his pottying needs. Pud seems delighted to have the option to pee into a receptacle (potty or a cup- he very much prefers to stand up and pee & I’m too cheap to buy a potty chair) instead of being in a wet diaper.

I was asked why I would want my nine month old to be able to do this. But think about this: isn’t it strange that we train babies to tolerate wearing their wastes close to their bodies for the first couple of years and then suddenly tell them that this is disgusting and they cannot do it anymore? Diapers are, let’s face it, strictly for parents’ convenience. As much as I love using cloth diapers and how cute a fluffy bum looks, I love even more tuning into my child’s attempts to express his needs and validating his preference for staying dry by encouraging his interest in using the bathroom for his elimination needs.
Awesome. Less laundry, happier baby, happier baby skin, and happier parents.

If I had to make a comparison of elimination communication to training dogs to eliminate on command or in a designated place, I’d totally be describing it as watching for signals, then providing the opportunity, and cheering for successes but ignoring any accidents or mistakes. Sounds like clicker training, doesn’t it? And it basically is.

2. Different cleaners.
So Pud, who now moves at the speed of lightning, gave me a poison control scare last week. I used up the last of some cleanser (knock off of Barkeeper’s Friend) cleaning up the bathroom. Pud needed to be contained safely so I could finish up the job (throw the stuff away), and so I cleaned him up from his water play and carried him to the living room and grabbed a gate to block him in. I’ll be doggoned if he didn’t escape and head to the bathroom, knock the container down and on him in 15 seconds flat while I was struggling with the gate. Fifteen.seconds.! He had some of the powder on his hands and his little chin, so I rinsed him with water and called Poison Control. He is fine, by the way.

We needed more cleanser, so guess what I used today? Pure white vinegar. Guess what? It works! No hard water gunk, no soap scum, and no major elbow grease needed to make it all go away, either. Win! I used it to clean both the bathroom sink and the toilet and Ben used it on the bathtub yesterday. Cheap, safer alternative.

3. Cloth instead of paper towels.
This is rocking my world. For most of the time, we are using cloth instead of paper, and it’s not nearly the germy existence I was warned of. It’s a matter of changing out dish rags every day and even between meals. One cloth for washing baby and high chair or table, one for dishes, and two towels- one for hands; one for dishes. One extra load of laundry per week, if that. Takes far fewer cloths to clean up than paper towels, so yay for the savings. I love the convenience of having one less thing to remember to keep in the pantry!