Give a Home Haircut – Frugal Friday


Before you say “NO WAY”, just hear me out.

It’s not THAT hard.

OK, it’s a little hard, but not really. If you’ve never done it before, learn a few tips, and then you learn by practicing. And here’s where little kids come in handy. They don’t really care if it’s not quite right.

I have given all of my boys all of their haircuts since they were babies. I started learning on the first one, and got better with time. Now, I have four whose hair I cut every 2 months or so.

Here’s what I do:

  • Sit child wearing bib or apron on top of table, at corner (so I can stand on the side)
  • Play video in front of child. This helps him sit still and not try to watch what you are doing.
  • Spray hair with warm water. Using a fine tooth comb, hold a section of hair up between your second & third fingers. Cut desired length.
  • Repeat, cutting section adjacent to already cut section. This is how you make sure it’s the same length.
  • On the top of the head, make sure you go front to back, and on the sides and back of the head go up to down. Otherwise you end up with stripes. (ask me how I know).

I’m sure there are some video tutorials on YouTube; at the time of this post I didn’t have time to look for one. But I will add one later on if I find a good one.

I had NO previous experience. Really. And I make a few mistakes now and then, but not too bad. Honestly, it’s not that hard. I think the hardest part is to be willing to do it, to believe that you can, and to not be afraid.

It grows back. 🙂

For more FrugalFriday ideas, visit LifeAsMom.com

Rewards Help Me Get It Done! -WFMW

You may have noticed a dramatic increase in my number of posts lately. If you haven’t, that’s okay. I know some people who have noticed, but not because they read this blog. I am, of course, referring to mi familia.

And the way they have noticed is this: every evening when the kiddos are told to lay out their clothes for the next morning (something I learned from Flylady; very helpful), I inevitably hear something that sounds like this:

“I can’t find a shirt” or “I have no socks” or, well, you get the picture. And although I do believe we must house an entire tribe of sock hiding gremlins, at least one or two pair would be found for use, that is, if I had actually folded and put the laundry away.

I get it washed; doing one full load (sometimes 2) a day keeps me on top of it. And it gets line dried in the sun. I even figured out that I can fold as I take it off the line and stack it by owner as I put it in the basket. But still…..I just haven’t been putting it away. Some, but not all.

So, I made a new rule for myself, starting today: No Publishing A Post Until ALL Laundry is FOLDED and PUT AWAY.

As you can see, I did it!

Little rewards help me get things done. It works for me. What works for you?

See what works for lots of other moms at wearethatfamily.com

Myths & Facts About Diapers

The folks at Pampers evidently feel the need to clear up some “confusion” regarding diapers. Specifically, regarding the debate between those backwards non progressing tree hugging natural crunchy cloth diaper users and normal modern people. They actually have this myths and facts page on their site.

Here’s one of the (humorous? Unbelievable?) highlights for me.

Myth: Disposable diapers are harmful to the environment.
Fact: All of the component materials in Pampers diapers are gentle to consumers and safe for the environment. Pampers diapers are made of materials that are also frequently used in a wide range of other consumer products.

The italics is mine. I did it to expose an incredibly flawed logic that I believe is extremely dangerous. (Not that my mommy brain is the queen of logic, mind you)

They are saying that you should accept the toxic stuff in their diapers as being safe for the environment (and also for you) because it’s “frequently used in a wide range of other…products.”

Um…hello? Many, MANY products are FILLED with toxic stuff. That’s the problem. It’s all around us. It’s…ubiquitous! (How’s that for an SAT word from this mommy’s brain!? If you want to rid your body of the toxins it’s accumulated, you must do a purposeful detox. More on that here and here.

SODIUM POLYACRYLATE is the chemical, added in powder form to the inner pad of a disposable, that makes it super-absorbent. When the powdered form becomes wet, it turns into a gel.

It can:
Can absorb up to 100X its weight in water.
Can stick to baby’s genitals, causing allergic reactions.
Reported to cause severe skin irritations, oozing blood from perineum and scrotal tissues, fever, vomiting and staph infections in babies.
When injected into rats it has caused hemorrhage, cardiovascular failure and death.
Banned from tampons in 1985 because of its link to Toxic Shock Syndrome.
Has killed children after ingesting as little as 5 grams of it.
Causes female organ problems, slows healing wounds, fatigue and weight loss to the employees in factories that manufacture it.

above info taken from an article on The Diaper Hyena; entire article here

According to the Clean Air Council, parents throw away 570 diapers PER SECOND! And one diaper takes 300 YEARS to break down.

Watch a 2 min news report on why a mother of triplets has chosen to switch to cloth diapers.

I wrote a 2 part post on cloth diapers and why I use them. You can read them here and here.

Assigned Dinner Helper-Works For Me Wednesday

I don’t know about you, but the hours between 4:30 and 6:30 are really tough for me. Really tough. Naptime is over, snacks are dealt, and The Dinner Preparation Begins.

I’m feeling a grroannn just thinking about it.

That’s because, in my family with 5 littles, it’s not that simple. One or more will need a diaper. One will get hurt. Two or more will argue or fight. And they all want to help. In the kitchen. With me. Laugh.

Hey….wait a minute. If someone could actually be of help, well, that would be helpful, right? Right.

I recently discovered that my older children are actually capable of real help. I’ve been training them since the beginning to do chores. Of course, with little ones, the work they do is usually not helpful at all, to say the least. Now that the oldest are 7, and 6, I’m finding that they and even the 4 year old are able to provide actual help with what they can do. (Yes, that’s my 4 year old cutting with (gasp) a real knife. Preparing a salad) It’s wonderful! Yes, they are slow. Yes, their work is not high quality. But with good scheduling and lowered expectations, they get good practice at things they need to know how to do, and I get help.

Enter: the Assigned Dinner Helper plan. It’s just as it sounds: I have an assigned helper for each day of the week. The older 2 get 2 days each, and the 4 year old gets 1. Twice a week I have no helper; I just don’t want one on those days.

The boys are always very excited to help and look forward to their day. They get to wear an apron, ring the dinner bell to call everyone to the table, and be proud of their contribution. And you would be amazed how a child will devour a salad that he has made himself.

Having Assigned Dinner Helpers works for me.

What works for you?

See what works for lots of other moms at WeAreThatFamily.com