Monday, April 30, 2012

Baby Babü Cloth Diaper Review

When I was still pregnant and first planned to cloth diaper our baby, I decided to go with prefolds and diaper covers because they seemed like the most economical option.  I also became overwhelmed trying to figure out the differences between all-in-ones, pockets, all-in-twos, etc.  While I had some brands researched, the diapers I ended up buying were dictated by the discounts and deals I found.  I have been able to try a few pocket diapers when I found them for a great price (or won them!), but I still feel like I haven’t really had a chance to test even a fraction of the cloth diapers out there.  That’s why I was so excited to receive a one-size pocket cloth diaper from new cloth diaper company, Baby Babü.

the smallest setting
Fit: I tested this diaper on my daughter, Lucia, who is almost 5 months old and approximately 17 lbs.  This is actually the first one-size diaper that we’ve used with her, so I was a little nervous about how it might fit, but after trying a few different adjustments, I was able to find a setting that fit her perfectly. Baby Babü markets their diapers as fitting babies from 8 to 35 lbs., although by looking at the smallest settings, I’m not sure that it would have fit Lucia when she was a newborn (she was 8 lbs. at birth).  I do think it would easily fit a 10 lbs. baby. 

the largest setting
Materials: Baby Babü diapers are made of a PUL outer and micro fleece inner.  The first thing I noticed when I first received the diaper was how soft it was inside, much softer than any other diapers we have used.  The diaper I received has snaps, but Baby Babü also offers diapers with aplix.  If given the preference, I usually choose aplix but snaps are not a dealbreaker for me; on the other hand, my husband strongly dislikes snaps because he often pinches Lucia’s skin while trying to snap them.

Design: Baby Babü diapers are designed with openings on both sides of the pocket, which I think makes it easy to stuff the diapers.  This also ensures that the insert agitates out in the wash, so I don’t have to worry about messing my hands to pull it out during a diaper change.  There is also a small snap on one end of the inside of the pocket that connects with a snap on the insert, which is helpful for keeping the insert with the diaper (no more searching for an insert when I need a diaper now). 

notice the snap on the insert and the snap in the pocket
Functionality: This diaper has quickly become one of a select few diapers that David and I both reach for first after cloth diaper laundry is done.  We have had nothing but the best experiences with it so far, with no leaks.  In fact, the first time I put this diaper on Lucia she had a large bowel movement that might have blown out other diapers we own; in the Baby Babü diaper, it was completely contained and one of the easiest cleanups I’ve had (it didn’t drip out of the diaper onto the changing table once I opened the diaper).

Price: Although the prices vary slightly depending on the print (and there are some really cute ones), the average price is around $12 for a one-size pocket diaper.  Compared to prices for other pocket diapers that can top $25, I find this price to be very reasonable.  I don’t believe that the quality has been sacrificed in order to offer such a low price and I will definitely be interested in buying more of these if when Lucia needs more.

In addition to one-size pocket diapers, Baby Babü also offers one-size diaper covers, wet bags and inserts.  And for those families that don’t cloth diaper or who combine cloth and disposables, Baby Babü also carries biodegradable, hypoallergenic, chemical-free disposable diapers.  Look for my review of these soon as I will be using them on Lucia when we go to Chicago later this week.

Baby Babü is giving Catholic Newlywed readers the opportunity to win a one-size pocking cloth diaper once a month for a year (June 2012-May 2013).  Contests run the 1st - 8th of each month, so remember to keep checking back. You can find all the current giveaways on the right sidebar of the blog!

I was sent a Baby Babü cloth diaper in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

Apartment Decorating: Changeable Light Switch Plates

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Leviton for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Although we do not yet know where David will find a job following his graduation (in less than two weeks!), we do know that we will be moving out of our current apartment into something a little larger.  I didn’t do much in the way of decorating when we moved in last summer since we knew we would might only be here a year, but I am determined to make our next home more cozy and welcoming regardless of how long we’ll be there.  Since David is looking at post-doc positions, we’ll only be able to temporarily settle down again so we will continue renting.  This is a little disappointing because there are some limitations about what you can do regarding décor in a rented home.  Painting is often out of the question, and even if it’s not, it’s a huge undertaking to paint an entire apartment, only to paint again a year later when you move out.  I know I’m not the only renter that has had that problem.

Renu<sup>®</sup> > Brands > Solutions from Leviton Web Site

I recently became aware of the Leviton Renu collection of switches, dimmers, and wall plates, which I think solve the problems of personalizing for renters.  These switches and wall plates come in 20 colors…and can be switched out whenever you want by simply popping the current one off and clicking in the new one!  Your wall plates can match the rest of the décor in your room and can be changed much quicker than you can repaint a room!  For renters, this is a great option, because it allows for personalization and a pop of color, is simple to install and uninstall, and can be taken with them when they move.  It’s also perfect for the woman who likes to accessorize her home like she accessorizes herself; changing color schemes becomes as easy as changing earrings.

This is a picture of one of my bathroom walls.  Isn’t it terrible?  I’m sure you didn’t even need to look very closely in order to notice that the light switch plate is crooked.  Yes, it’s the switch plate that’s crooked, not the picture, but because of it, it makes the picture look crooked.  Ugh.  See how much a simple wall plate affects the look of a room?  I would love to replace this with a wall plate that matches the blue towels and bathroom accessories we received as wedding presents…and then change it again on a whim to compliment the neutral tones of our newer towels and rugs. 

To get involved in the conversation about Renu, join the three upcoming twitter parties (and get the chance to win Home Depot gift cards) on Wednesday, April 18th, Thursday, April 26th and Wednesday, May 2nd at 9pm EST.  In order to participate, follow @Leviton and #Renu.  You can also connect to Leviton on Facebook.

Leviton Image.png

Visit Sponsor's Site

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Guest Post at Caffeinated Catholic Mama: Blessed are those who are persecuted…

Karianna of Caffeinated Catholic Mama has been running a series of reflections on the beatitudes and I am very blessed to have been given the opportunity to contribute.  My post is based on the beatitude regarding persecution: Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:10) 
Every night, my husband and I pray the rosary.  After having said the rosary regularly for almost two years now (since our wedding in July 2010), I’ve noticed that I tend to approach each set of mysteries from a distinct perspective.  When meditating on the Joyful Mysteries, I tend to put myself in the place of the Holy Mother.  I think of the Glorious Mysteries from the perspective of the Apostles and other followers of Christ.  The Sorrowful Mysteries, however, are the most difficult for me because I have no choice but to meditate on them from the position of Christ himself...continue reading at Caffeinated Catholic Mama

If you are visiting Catholic Newlywed for the first time, welcome! I'm Mandi and I'm a 20-something Catholic wife and new mother to a sweet (almost) 5 month old, Lucia Rose.  While I'm no longer a newlywed, the name of the blog stuck and I still blog about my housekeeping attempts but these are now accompanied by adventures in motherhood.  My blog doesn't have a singular focus, so all aspects of my life are fair game, including my gradual shift toward becoming "cruchy", living on a budget, my Catholic faith, and more.  I also host two blog series with some great guest bloggers, one on marrying young and the other entitled "Baby on a Budget".  I hope you'll stay to read a bit about me and join in the conversations about our faith, family, and future (and enter a giveaway or two)!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

What I'm Loving Lately: Food on the Table

I'm not much of a meal planner.  In fact this is how I figure out what I'm going to make for dinner seven times out of ten:

David: What are we going to have for dinner?

Me: I don't know, what you do want?

David: about ______ ?

Me: Ok, do you want to go to the store to pick up the ingredients or do you want me to?

I'm sure you are asking yourself exactly how you might implement such a well thought out method your own household.  In all seriousness though, it really has become a hindrance in my attempts to run my household more smoothly.  There are only two nights a week I don't have to worry (well, let's be honest, I'm obviously not worrying) about what we are eating: Wednesday because it's breakfast burrito day and Sunday because that's pizza night.  

Every once in a while, I find something on sale at the grocery store and attempt to plan a meal around it.  I've found that this not only makes planning easier, it also helps reduce our monthly grocery budget which, despite being an insane coupon user, is still not where I would like it to be.  Now if I could only do that all the time...or have someone else do it for me.

Well, apparently I can.  I recently came across a website called Food on the Table that does just that.  Once you register, you can select the grocery stores that you frequently shop, then choose your food preferences and dietary restrictions.

Then, Food on the Table will suggest meal options based on items that are on sale at your selected grocery stores! Here's an example of a few of the recipes suggested for me this week:

Once you choose the recipes you want to make, Food on the Table will create a shopping list for you!  You have the option to add any additional items to your grocery list that you may need, then can print it out or send it to your phone along with the recipes.  It's that simple: recipe planning made easy!

Join now through one of the links in this post for a free lifetime subscription to Food on the Table (and a lifetime of easy meal planning, happy husbands, and extra money in the bank).

This post contains affiliate links.  They do not affect the content of this blog as all opinions are 100% my own.

Friday, April 27, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday (Take 55)

--- 1 ---

David and I (Lucia too!) are participating in a walk for a local pro-life pregnancy center, Pregnancy Support Services of Wake Forest, tomorrow.  Our goal was to raise $100, but we’ve only raised $15 so far.  If you are able to spare anything, you can donate at our participant page.  The minimum donation amount on the form is $25, but you can fill in your own amount.  Even $5 is very appreciated and will make a difference in the lives of men, women, and babies in my community.

--- 2 ---
One way I tried to raise money for the walk was through advertisements on my blog.  Only one sponsor took me up on the offer, Sweet Joyful Creations.  (If you are interested, there is still time to email me!)  Sweet Joyful Creations is a business run by Jessica, a work-at-home mom (WAHM) who makes custom car seat canopies.  If you know someone with a young baby or an expectant mama, these truly make wonderful gifts!  (Jessica is currently giving away a car seat canopy to one of my readers. Enter the Sweet Joyful Creations giveaway here.)  If you are in the market for a baby gift, please use Sweet Joyful Creations because by advertising through me, Jessica is supporting life.  Don’t you just love when a business supports causes in your community that are important to you?

--- 3 ---

As long as the weather is nice, David and I try to take Lucia on a walk every afternoon.  David surprised me a few days ago by putting Lucia in the “big girl” part of the stroller instead of snapping her car seat into it.  She still looks tiny in it, but it is a reminder that my baby girl really is growing up.

--- 4 ---

My first day as a substitute was great!  Although it didn’t go exactly as planned.  I had accepted the perfect position for Wednesday.  It was only a half day in the morning, which I loved since I was nervous and wanted to ease into it.  It was subbing in a high school social studies class, which is the content area of my degree.  Of course, I received a call at 11 pm the night before saying the sub position had been cancelled.  But when I got up Wednesday morning, I searched for positions and found an afternoon position in an elementary school for English as a Second Language (ESL).  As luck would have it, I have an endorsement in ESL.  I don’t have a lot of experience with elementary school kids, but it went really well (and the kindergartners were SO cute!).  I’m teaching again today too!

--- 5 ---

Have you ever found the perfect gift?  My (future) sister-in-law is planning a “rustic chic” wedding and I have been looking for a bridal shower gift for her.  Yesterday, out of the blue, I come across these wooden photoboards from PhotoBarn.  They fit her style (and the wedding theme) perfectly!  It takes several weeks to get one, but that’s fine since I figured she would want to use a wedding picture anyway (I talked to her and she does!).  Finding the gift  isn’t even the best part.  Normally we wouldn’t be able to afford to get it for her, but I found a deal to get $115 worth from PhotoBarn for only $33.75!  I don’t usually write posts about amazing deals I find (and I find quite a few) but I just had to share because this seriously is a wonderful unique gift for a bride, a baby (they have photo blocks), or a mom (Mother’s day is coming, hint hint!).

--- 6 ---

If you’ve read the Hunger Games, I’d love to know what you thought about them.  One of David’s labmates loaned us the books and I’m a little nervous to start them.  I have a lot of things to do in the next week and it’s not the time to get sucked into a book series.  When I was in college, I picked up the Twilight books during finals week.  Let me just say I finished all four books within 72 hours and finished the semester on very little sleep.

--- 7 ---

I’m planning (hoping) to make a few homemade cards in the next week.  I’d like to make a bridal shower card, mother’s day cards, maybe a graduation card or two.  If you’ve seen any examples or tutorials, I’d love if you would send them my way.  I do much better when I have some inspiration than when I wing it.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Thursday, April 26, 2012