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Parenting
Category

  • Are You Trying to Manipulate Me?

    So I decided that I was going to try to give the baby a pacifier. Considering how much sucking is part of her daily life, I figured it would be nice to suck on something other than me. So I put the thing in her mouth… she spits it out. I do it again… she spits it out. I do it about 10 more times, and get the same reaction.

    So then I put in her mouth, and hold it in with the tip of my finger. She sucked on it for a minute, then sort of heaved in a gagging motion until my moved my finger and she spit the damn thing out again.

    My friend Grace came over, and asks how she was liking the pacifier.

    “Well she keeps acting like it’s gagging her…”

    “Acting like it’s gagging her, or it is gagging her?” Holy crap Grace… You have one hell of a point there! She is not pretending to gag to mess with my mind… She is actually gagging!

    I know maybe that sounds dumb, but it was a total revelation for me. She is not trying to manipulate me by gagging, or crying, or fussyness. She is just feeling what she feels and reacting. She may not even get that I am spending my entire life and energy just trying to understand her needs. She is just living her life and reacting to what I put in front of her.

    They are crying out of need, not emotion. There is no need to take anything personally.

    So as potentially obvious as this may be, your baby is not fucking with you, they are just trying their best to communicate to you!

    January 7, 2011 • 1st Month, Baby Gear, Parenting • Views: 812

  • The Happiest Baby on the Block

    Even if you have been around babies before, newborns are an entirely different species. They have these floppy heads, they make faces that have absolutely no correlation to any emotion, they have no control of their arms and legs that just flail about… in short… they are not really humans yet. It is like they are little exposed embryos.

    I decided maybe I would try to read up on these mysterious beings, and came across a book called “The Happiest Baby on the Block.” What an enticing title right? Who doesn’t want the happiest baby on the block? Because that is not just a happy baby… but the happiest. Like no other baby will have more joy in their hearts than your baby. If you read this book, your baby’s happiness will crush all the other babies and you will win! Sounds awesome… I am sold!

    The book talks about how the first three months of life for a baby are really like the 4th trimester. Meaning, in order for the baby to feel at peace, you have to re-create the womb as much as possible. The author suggests 5 strategies to make your little snuggle bunny feel like they are still stuffed up your vagina.

    1) Shhhhh(ing): The sound of shhhhhh is not just something you say just to get someone to shut the hell up. It is also a noise that soothes babies like you wouldn’t believe. Supposedly… it mimics the noise the baby heard in the womb of blood rushing around all the veins and arteries and the like. And not just a soft shhhhh noise either…. But a pretty hearty SHHHHHHHH. I am telling you, this works like a charm.
    2) Swaddling: Basically this means that you take a blanket, and wrap your baby up like a baby burrito. Newborns have a reflex called the “moroe reflex” that shoots their arms out
    3) Swinging: Really… it is more of a jiggling… but I think the author was sticking to the whole S theme. Babies were jiggled around in your belly the whole time they were in there, and that movement totally soothes them. Crazy town right? You don’t want to be still for them to at peace… you want to jiggle them! Sometimes I would put her on my lap facing me, and just bounce my legs like I was super nervous, and she would go right to sleep.
    4) Side-laying: This one wasn’t that important for me, but a lot of babies like to lay on their side when in your arms. The book talks about facing the babies out, but I always faced my baby in towards me and it was more of a side tilt.
    5) Sucking: I know there are all sorts of conversations regarding the pacifier… my baby never took one. I tried, and she just spat that shit right out like she thought I was trying to fuck with her. So she is all about sucking on my nip. But the sucking, whether they are hungry or not, will soothe them. They somehow can figure out how to suck to get food, or just suck to suck… you can actually feel the difference.

    This advice has helped me so much I cannot even tell you. I have yet to have more than a few minutes with my baby crying because of these great tools. Now, I totally know that every baby is different, and some are more sensitive, then others… but I am just saying that this really helped me and it is totally worth trying!

    January 4, 2011 • 1st Month, Books, Parenting • Views: 1026

  • Parenting 101

    In order to be good at anything in life, you need at least 1 of two things; experience or education. Sure, innate talent factors into the intensity of potential excellence, but I am talking about even being decent at something.

    Think about it… would you see a dentist who just woke up one day and said “Hey I am a dentist now. Open up and lemme see those teeth of yours.” Hell no you wouldn’t! You would want that guy to have gone to dentist school, and to have dentist-ed on a bunch of other motherfuckers before they are even think of drilling into your mouth.

    Or a cab driver? Would you just get into the back of the car with someone who has never driven before? They were just like “Hey, I am a new driver…. First time behind the wheel. But I figure I will just do the best I can.”

    Would you even let someone cut your hair that has never cut hair before? Probably not… and your hair grows back!

    I got thinking about this last night, because it suddenly felt so crazy that you could be a parent without any experience or any education… and you are raising a human being!!! It is probably the most profound thing you could ever do… with so many potential ways to fuck up, and there is no certificate you need to earn to do it. This person’s life is totally in your hands, and there is absolutely no prerequisite besides knowing how to fuck.

    Even if you were to adopt a child… it took Sandra Bullock 4 years to adopt her son and she is a gagillionaire! And she seems wicked nice! There is way more scrutiny for a person that wants to help an already living being than for those who intentionally, or haphazardly create one.

    I am not saying I have a solution for this. It is not like you could or should require people to have at least 2,000 hours in the field, plus a Masters, in order to procreate. But I will say, for those that are lucky enough to have had a baby, it is your responsibility to do the best you can to educate yourself while you can the experience.

    Sure we all have our instincts and intuition, and those should be paid attention to and honored… I am a huge fan of intuition. I totally believe in it, and feel it all the time! I am like an intuition-phile. I loves it so and will probably write about how relevant it is too. I am in no way am advocating that everything you need to know about parenting can be learnt in book, or taught in a class, but I still think there is a lot of information and help out there to guide us through the process.

    December 19, 2010 • 1st Month, Books, Parenting • Views: 1196

  • Bebe’s 1st Bath

    Baby’s first bath

    Although this may not be something you want to think about too deeply, birth cheese is really good for your baby’s skin. You know, the white shit that covers the baby when its born? Yes, that stuff. So you actually don’t want to rush to wash it off, but rather rub it in and let it seep into your babies pours. Yum! Point is, when I took bebe home, she had yet to have her first bath.

    I was sitting on the bed with bebe, my mother, and my friend Grace, and we were all sweating in the excessive summer heat. My mom was holding bebe when she started to fuss. It was her first real declaration of protest, so I felt like something was definitely disturbing her.

    “Ummm Mom, something is going on, maybe give her to me.”
    “Oh she is fine Toni. She is just happy to be with her grandma.” I thought, “well, okay, she was a mom too, she probably knows what she is talking about,” but the fussiness only intensified.

    “Okay mom… maybe give her to me. I think she is uncomfortable.” My mom rolled her eyes and handed her to me, and at that moment, the problem became painfully obvious for all involved. She had pooed. But not just any poo. A poo as black and sticky as tar… a poo that seemed as if it had been summoned from the depths of hell… a poo with a mass so impressive, it could have competed with a frat boy after a night of drinking and McDonald’s… a poo that seemed to be comprised of a substance from another dimension that had oozed all the way down her back, and into her hair.

    “Holy shit! Literally! Ahhhhhhhhhhhh! We need to get her in the bath!!!!” Not sure if my new precious bebe was leaking toxic sludge, I knew that I had to get this shit of her pronto. Now I had never given a little newborn a bath before, and their bodies are so scrawny, and now my little lizard was covered in poo that rationally I did not want to touch, but practically, my hands where now immersed in.

    We rushed the baby into the bathroom, and my mom ran the bath as I held the baby dripping poo onto my toes, and now very agitated. My mom, in her best intentions, had purchased a bath that was too big for bebe’s tiny body, and I, in my usual Toni way, never even examined the bath she had bought.

    “This bath is too big! I can’t put her down in that! She is going to drown!”
    “Oh Toni, don’t be ridiculous. Just hold her up in the bath and support her.”

    I bent over and placed the baby in the water, while Grace searched for a washcloth. My mom had added soap to the water, which only made her slippery, and I thought she was going to shoot out my hands and get sucked down the drain.

    “Fuck mom… I hate this bath. It’s too big. Why did you put soap in the water?? She is too wiggly and slippery! Ahhhhhhhh.”

    “Oh for God’s sake Toni, just hold on to her and Grace can wipe off the poo!”
    “Ahhhh Mom!! I can’t support her head at this angle! It’s gonna fall off!!”

    With the help of my mom and Grace, we did get the poo that would have made Satan proud off her. We then got her dressed, and while I was still panting from the whole ordeal she was asleep again.

    “Man… I am lucky you guys were here! What would I have done with out you?”

    So what I learned about
    1) Bebe’s first poo is pretty gnarly so watch out. That is a lot of impacted shit up in there.
    2) Know about the basic equipment you are going to be using, and do a dry run. Make sure you are comfortable with the things that you have bought to take care your bebe!

    November 30, 2010 • 1st Month, 1st time for everything, Baby Gear • Views: 787