DivaCup- Real Reasons to Ditch Tampons

I was not paid for this review, though I did receive a DivaCup to facilitate this review. This is my personal and honest experience and opinion.

I knew about cloth diapering long before I knew about reusable options for menses. I really wish I would have known about them sooner! You’ve got sponges, cloth pads, cups, and probably others that I have not heard of yet. I used cloth pads part-time right after I had Little Man, but I’m really not a pad girl. I really hate the feel of something bulky in my undies (yeah, go ahead and make jokes). I had to wait to get my period again (over a year, thank goodness!) before I could try a cup. I was so excited to try one! I bought another brand the day after I started again and struggled with it for several months before Diva sent me a cup to review. The other brand is a good brand, it just did not work for me (yes, sometimes a cup will not work for you, so you might have to try another one). DivaCup really saved my period! It was such a relief to not have leaks. I did use tampons for one day and was vividly reminded of why I wanted to ditch them.

DivaCup- Real Reasons to Ditch Tampons- Cloth Diaper Addicts

No strings.

Menstrual cups don’t have strings that hang out of your underwear, get lost in your crevices, or pulled on when you wipe (if you leave it in while you potty). I hated digging for that string. Talk about a gross scavenger hunt. The DivaCup does have a little stem that you can trim as short as you need. You might want to, because it can poke you and be uncomfortable if you leave it long.

Easy to get out.

Just reach in and pull out, keeping it upright so you don’t spill it all over your hand. And you don’t have to worry about using the right absorbency! You can pull the cup out easily whether there’s a little blood or lots of it. I don’t have to worry about the joys of thinking I need a super tampon and only needing a pantiliner or not needing one at all. Oh my gosh, that is torture to pull out a dry or mostly dry tampon! I actually ripped one in half trying to get the darn thing out. Twice! Oh yeah, had to go fishing. Cups don’t mess with your natural lube, unlike a tampon which absorbs everything. It does take a little getting used to, but after I ripped that tampon in half, I was not complaining. Definitely not. Cups simply collect the blood. It did take me a little bit to get used to still feeling a little damp (not from leaking, from my normal vaginal secretions).

No worry about having the right absorbency.

This kind of ties in with the easy to get out part. Like I mentioned, I thought I needed a super plus or super tampon and it turned out I only needed a light in one instance and had stopped in the other. Yes, no buying variety boxes or multiple boxes! One cup through your whole cycle. During your heavy days, you just empty it more often. On your light day/s, you might be able to leave it in up to 12 hours. Personally, most of my period I have to change every two to three hours. And use a  nighttime pad at night or get up in the middle of the night to empty it. I’ll admit, I just slap an overnight pad in my underwear to catch any leaks until I wake up in the morning. I love not having to worry about using the right absorbency, especially since sometimes my period will stop for the night or a whole 24 hours before resuming again (this usually happens at the end).

No budgeting for tampons each month and having your fingers crossed that you have them when you need them.

Cups are a one time (well, you might want to replace it eventually) purchase. DivaCups come with a little fabric pouch to store it in. Just toss it in your purse when it’s around that time of the month. And since menstrual cups are reusable, you’ll always have one. Keep it in your purse or the bathroom and it’ll be there when you need it.

The DivaCup

What’s the DivaCup like? It’s pretty awesome. I’ll admit, it’s not been perfectly smooth sailing, but it’s been so much better than using tampons. You can read DivaCup’s instructions on their site.

The DivaCup is made out of healthcare grade silicon. It’s a softer silicon, so it’s very easy to fold and molds to your vagina’s shape. Sometimes I’ve had a hard time getting it to open, but I just take it out, refold, and reinsert. I use the pushdown fold, as you can see on DivaCup’s How it Works page. I don’t push the rim all the way down, just to about halfway. The DivaCup comes with a little cotton bag to store it in. Of course instructions also come in the box. And all you need to clean it is either the DivaWash or a mild, unscented, oil-free soap.

Why not switch?

Seriously, I can’t think of a good reason not to switch. Unless you’re someone who prefers pads. In that case, I recommend checking out cloth pads. The DivaCup truly is awesome! You can check out DivaCup’s website by clicking on their logo below and follow them on Facebook and Twitter. You can look for the nearest store to purchase one here or you can buy one online here. Here’s the sizing guide to help you find the right DivaCup for you.

DivaCup

 

Have you tried a menstrual cup? If you haven’t, would you?

Greener Period – I’ll Never Go Back to Disposable Pads

Ever since Cozy Bums Diapers (my local dealer) got in cloth pads, I’ve been happier with having a greener period.  Even though my attempt at the Diva Cup was a rather unpleasant fail, I’m still happier with avoiding the “feminine hygiene product” aisle at Costco or the grocery store.

I have discovered… cloth pads.

I’ve played with a few varieties.  There are some that I like.  There are some that I can’t stand.  But even the worst of them are still more comfortable for me than disposable pads.  So why do I love them?

Warning: this post just might be TMI.  But for Pete’s sake, it’s about menstruation.  With such an obviously TMI topic, it stands to reason that the post itself just might be TMI, as well.

[Read more…]

Furniture Safety – Tethering Tips and Tricks

After I wrote about the danger of dressers falling on children, my friend Anne of Zephyr Hill Blog asked if I had any furniture safety tips or recommendations for tethering.  I don’t claim to be an expert, but I can tell you how we’ve done it and what’s worked in our home.

Furniture Safety – The High Dresser

The high dresser is one of the more obvious pieces of furniture to fall.  Parents put things on top, kids can’t reach, so then they climb.  I did it and survived with no ill effects, but not every child is so lucky.  People will often try to buy devices to help with furniture safety, but when we were tethering Norton’s dresser, there wasn’t one anywhere to be found in our city.  That guy I married is a thinker who likes to find simple solutions.  He pulled the drawers out of the high dresser and found that there was essentially a “stud” running up the back of the dresser on the inside.  He found a stud in the wall, bought a few three inch long screws, and actually screwed the dresser itself into the wall.  It does not move.  Not at all.  We tested with just one screw by trying our best to pull it over.

It didn’t move.  But then, because I’m a believer in furniture safety overkill, he screwed three more of those long screws through the dresser and the dry wall into the stud.

The Hutch

I love the changing table in Eudora’s room.  I love the hutch and how well it holds diapers.  When it was still Norton’s room, though, we had a scare.  I was trying to get something off the top of the hutch (which I’m too short to reach without a whole lot of effort… and my husband forgets about my height disadvantage because he is an inconsiderate tall person).  Somehow I managed to upset the top of the hutch, making it too top heavy for it to balance.  The hutch fell on me.

I caught it.  I was also not holding Norton (he was contained in his crib at the time).  Even though I caught it and managed to put it upright, I can tell you that freaking thing weighs a ton.  It hurt.  The shelf that we weren’t using on the hutch was on top; it fell off and bounced off my other shoulder.  When I get hurt, I get mad, so I had that rush of adrenaline that helped me put the hutch back into place.

Furniture Safety - Tethering

A few brackets like these have kept the hutch attached to the dresser.

After I put the hutch back in place, I called my husband and let him know exactly how angry I was over the situation and how it would have been very, very different results if it had hit our son.  The furniture safety fix for the hutch was to use a flat metal bracket to screw the dresser base and the hutch together.

In the last few months, Norton has taken to climbing Eudora’s changing table to get into things that we try to keep out of his reach.  Those brackets have kept the hutch in place.

We’ve also attached some tethers to keep the entire dresser/hutch combo from coming down.  However, since it takes about five people to move the combined weight, I suspect it’s overkill.

I’m okay with that.

Furniture Safety and a Flat Screen

Flat screen TVs are awesome.  They’ve got that wonderful slim profile and provide such a better picture than the old tube televisions.  They’re also deceptively heavy.  The base and the weight distribution make them easy to tip.  And when you consider that children have a special gift for tipping things over, that makes them pretty darned dangerous.  Ours are all wall mounted so that the risk of my little climbers pulling the television over on themselves is eliminated.  For our 40″, we like something that will swivel like this wall mount.  For the 52″ in our basement, we use something pretty heavy duty: a fixed wall mount that can hold up to 250 pounds.  That’s enough to allow for the weight of the TV and any chance a curious child gets into it.

If you’re not willing to mount your TV for whatever reason, there are also furniture tethers specifically for your television.

What Should You Mount?

Generally, if it’s tall and heavy, it should be mounted… but even shorter dressers have been known to fall over with deadly results.  Your dressers.  The refrigerator and stove.  Your China cabinet and hutch.  Book cases.  Toy racks.  They don’t always seem like things that should be tethered in the name of furniture safety, but you’d be amazed at what children will climb.

Have you mounted furniture for safety?

Household Safety – Tether Your Furniture

When we have kids, we think of household safety as “baby proofing.”  You know, make sure your kid won’t hang himself on the cord from your blinds.  Use outlet covers to prevent your child from sticking a whisk in an outlet.  Keep the kid out of the dog food, make sure you use cabinet locks.  All of that is fairly effective stuff in the beginning, but as they grow, household safety concerns change.

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I Tried a Diva Cup Last Night…

Warning: this post may be TMI.  After all, it’s talking about using a Diva Cup.  If you’re not familiar with the Diva Cup, it’s a menstrual cup made of silicone.  That means it’s going to be discussing vaginas, menstruation, and all manner of things related to one’s lady parts.

Not disturbed?  Then read on!

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Mommy Blogger Vaccination Challenge

I’m pretty sure we’ve all seen (or at least heard) about Samantha Bee’s anti-vaccination truthers bit on The Daily Show.  The case for anti-vaccination is made by a crunchy mommy blogger.  Rather than attributing the reduction or eradication of diseases to prevention through vaccination, she suggests that it’s better sanitation… like the fact that there are no longer horse feces in the middle of the streets.

[Read more…]

Big Hugs Elmo Gets No Love

I’ve been waiting for a recall announcement to come out on the Big Hugs Elmo doll.  I kept expecting it to come out any moment now, but have been disappointed by Hasbro’s refusal to issue a recall.  Why?

Big Hugs Elmo Gets No Love (Cloth Diaper AddictsWell, it turns out that there’s more to the furry little monster than spindly arms and complaints of being hugged too tight.  There have been reports of batteries melting in the little guy.  As soon as I heard about it on Facebook (it happened legit to a friend of a friend, not an “I’m hearing this thing that happened to a friend of a friend’s mom’s aunt’s cousin’s wife’s sister-in-law’s niece” thing), I pulled the batteries out of mine and called Wal-Mart.  Yes, we could return it, no problem… and they’d already had two returned that day for the same reason in the Prince George store. [Read more…]

Goals for 2014

I don’t do New Year’s resolutions.  Ever.  However, I am a fan of setting goals for myself.  Goals are a long term thing to accomplish, while New Year’s resolutions are a “I’ll do this forever or never do this again starting January 1!”  That’s really, really not my bag.  Goals are something that can be set any time, for any reason.

So, with that in mind, these are the things that I want to accomplish in 2014. [Read more…]

Postpartum Questions and TMI

This afternoon, I was sitting on the couch wasting time on Facebook.  A mom had some postpartum questions, but she was concerned about TMI… so she wanted to discuss it via PM.  I can totally understand the desire to not want to discuss what’s going on under your undies with 2400 women.

However, here’s the thing to remember: there’s no such thing as TMI when discussing postpartum questions on a mommy Facebook group.  Every single one of us is either pregnant, trying to be pregnant, or have had children.  Those of us who have birthed some babies have had that wonderful, long lasting postpartum bleeding session.  There is bound to have been someone who has had whatever your bleeding question might be, from the barely there blessing to the “OMG, there’s a crime scene in my pants!”  Some of us have had stitches, either under the undies or across the abs.  Some of us have had stitches from tearing, some from episiotomy. [Read more…]

Balanitis and Judgment Fears

I have been struggling with potty training Norton.  There are days that he goes to the potty and it’s no problem.  Then there are weeks when he fights, refuses to go, holds it for eight hours at a time, begs for diapers, and does anything he possibly can to block potty training.  A couple of weeks ago, I left a status on my Facebook page about taking Norton to the hospital.  He was peeing and little drops of blood were showing up in the toilet.  His little penis (or what he calls his pee pee… with no encouragement from us) was just not right.  We ultimately got a diagnosis of balanitis. [Read more…]