Friday, June 26, 2009

Kvelling Corner

I refuse to call this new section of my blog "Kvelling Korner," because misspellings for the sake of being cute are one of my biggest pet peeves. In fact, throughout my former life as a 4th grade teacher, one of my favorite games was "Catch the Mistakes!" I would encourage my students to seek out and record errors in signs, things like "Avocado's For Sale" and "Your crazy if you miss these deals" and "Open All Nite!" Nothing makes kids happier than correcting adults, and I'm sure there are many frustrated shop keepers out there who'd like to find the lady that encouraged a bunch of brazen nine-year-olds to correct their grammar!

Oh, and for those non-New Yorkers and/or non-Yiddish speakers, "kvelling" means to gush about something. It's one of my favorite words.

As a new parent, you're bombarded with marketing. There is so much crap you're told you need to buy to parent correctly, and it can be overwhelming, intimidating, and down-right scary to figure out where you should be spending your hard-earned dough once your bun pops out of the oven.

That's where my "Kvelling Corner" comes in. Now, it's true that what I might adore might not work for you. Every parent has to figure out what fits in their lives. But I simply must gush about a few choice items in the hopes that they bring you as much joy/relief/amusement as they do for us!

1. gdiapers

As you might recall from the old days of my blog, Dave and I (and Stella) were dedicated to cloth diapering for many months. It was wonderful while it lasted, but the huge, industrial washing machines in our current (ahem) apartment building ruined the diapers. The detergent caked up on the fabric, rendering them the opposite of water-proof and an enemy to Stella's sensitive tush.

So we tried gdiapers. The outer layer is reusable cloth, and into that you snap a reusable rubber lining. Inside that rubber lining goes a biodegradable, flushable insert that absorbs the pee and poop.

The only thing I don't like about gdiapers is that when Stella has a really nasty poop, I have to be quite intimate with it, as you have to rip the insert apart and "swizzle" the insert in the toilet. Sometime the poop goes on the rubber lining and you have to rinse it off.

However, there is something so gratifying about flushing away all the nastiness and not having to change your trash (or do the laundry) every five seconds.

The health food store near us carries the inserts for $12 for 32, so they're only slightly more expensive than disposables. But much better for the environment!

2. Maclaren Volo

Dave and I used to laugh at folks who'd talk about how their strollers "handled." I mean, really, do you plan to hike to the top of Mount McKinley with it?

My plan, anyway, was to use carriers to tote Stella around -- my beloved Ergo (another kvelling entry, I'm sure), the Moby, the Bjorn -- I loved the idea of taking up little to no extra space and having my girl in my face where we could converse. The only problem was Stella became very heavy very quickly (currently around 24 lbs.) and doesn't love to be in the carrier that much. She arches her back and cranes her neck, trying to see what I'm seeing and breaking my back in the process. So we began to use our stroller much more.

But after a few short months of trying to navigate the bumpy sidewalks of Brooklyn with a clunker, we got annoyed. Add to that the fact that our other stroller was a pain in the neck to fold and super heavy, and we knew something had to change.

I really did my research, asking all the moms I could find what type of umbrella stroller they'd recommend. And the feedback was impressive. Everyone said Maclaren, and several said the volo. (If you don't believe me, check out the various sing alongs and storytimes -- you'll see a sea of Maclaren at the entrance way.) Why? Because it's lightweight but handles very well.

We got ours on Ebay for half price, and it's worth every penny. (It would still be worth every penny at full price, too.) It glides around Kensington as if we were floating on a cloud (no easy task with all that litter on the sidewalk). It folds up easily into a minute, lightweight sliver of almost nothingness. The seat is mesh, so Stella doesn't boil in the New York summer heat. And it's pretty. (Ours is pink but also has a cool switch-out orange seat and canopy that I can wait to try out.)

That's it for now. I'm sure I'll think of more products to add, and I can certainly think of some worthy books to recommend.

But Thai food is on its way and blogger's giving me grief about adding photos, so I think I'll take a blogging break for now.

Happy purchasing!


Martin said...

Love the Maclaren! Love the Ergo too. "My" baby is was too big for the front option on the Ergo, but she's big enough for the back one, which is cool.

Doesn't do much for my gut, but there you have it :) I like kvelling corner!

And I also hate cute misspellings.

Kellygirlnyc said...

I am glad to hear you talk about how awesome the gdiapers are. When my friend was pregnant a while ago I recommended them to her and was told that she'd heard not great things about them, so it's nice to hear that they aren't as bad as she'd said.... :)

Tiffanie said...

thanks for the recommendations. i know at some point Anjali will need a stroller, and i like the idea of the umbrella ones ~ over-design is one of my pet peeves; they seem simple and efficient. i, too, despise "cute" misspellings. and if you ever catch anything (spelling or grammar-wise) to correct in my blog, please tell me!

Tiffanie said...

hey, Randi ~

your post reminded me of a couple real winners from my friend Alyssum's blog ~ collections from our homeland of "phun" spellings and grammar. enjoy! ,