Monday, July 14, 2008

More Army Wives Laughs

Ok, I can't believe I'm still talking about this show, but I am. Since I'm still watching it, there may be more to come, too, so be warned! Now that my hubbie is home, there are no more tears, even on duty nights, I promise. Anyway, I watched last week's episode tonight. A soldier's remains are found in Vietnam, and they discover he has no family who will be attending his memorial service. So, what does Col. Holden's wife do? She "mobilizes the FRG". I think I actually laughed out loud at this. Next thing you know, they have managed to get a hold of old VA records or something and found his former best friend, and have arranged for flowers, etc. for the service. Before I saw more, I should say I think the FRG often provides a fantastic way to meet other spouses and be more involved in the command. I appreciate that there are women who volunteer to do this (and men; we are subforce, so nary a male spouse around). That said, the FRG (at least in the Navy) is a group of spouses who volunteer to arrange social gatherings, give presents to new babies (we got a bear for Wyatt and a onesie with the boat's name on it for Oscar), and sometimes arrange meals or other things for spouses in need. They don't hunt down MIA soldiers' best friends and arrange fantastic memorial services. At least, not in my world. Maybe the Army is different? P.S. How on earth do these women find babysitters so they can attend everything that happens on base? I need to discover their secret.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Things to Never Say to a Military Wife

"I can't imagine how it must be to be without your husband for months on end! I know I could never do it." Don't say this to us, please. You know what we hear? "Holy cow, I'm so glad I'm not you! Let me look the other way now so I don't have to be some actual help to you while your baby is screaming and the toddler is running away because you were trying to help the baby."

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Further Adventures in Cloth Diapering

So, I learned something today. About four years ago, we bought something called Gerber Birdseye prefold diapers to use as burp cloths for Wyatt. Because he had reflux as a baby, they worked out pretty well. One spit up from him could soak one of them. We used to keep them all over the house, and picking him up meant picking up one of the diapers. Because Oscar rarely spits up, they now are just stacked in a basket collecting dust.

I did know they were marketed as diapers, but I really never thought they were actually diapers because I'd only ever seen people use them as burp cloths. (Haha, the disposable people have done their marketing work well!)

However, today, I woke up and realized I'd forgotten to put the diapers in the dryer last night. Ugh. We only have 7 diapers right now because I've been trying out different kinds in search of what one I really want to commit to using most of the time. I did have a larger order on its way, but it didn't arrive until this afternoon.

So, I was faced with pulling out the disposables or getting creative. Since I really, really hate having to use disposables now, I got creative. It occurred to me that those burp cloths might actually work as the diapers they are called. And, really, considering how cheap they were and how much we've already used them, how great would it be if they actually worked out? So, I pulled out one of our Jamtots covers (I don't usually put our covers in the dryer; they come out of the washer almost dry and I want them to last longer; even in the dryer, the inserts take over an hour to dry), folded that bad boy up, and put it on my patient little guy.

People, that diaper actually worked! He even pooped in it, and I got to discover how someone could accidentally flush a diaper down the toilet (no, I didn't drop it, but I sure came close). I actually think they are easier to clean poop off of than our pockets, which is surprising considering all the space-age, fancy fabrics that they use.

I don't think I'll be reaching for this first or anything, and they'd be fairly useless if Oscar was a heavy wetter, but they work out well enough that my diaper stash just grew quite a bit without me buying anything. While I may buy another Bumgenius diaper or two for overnights and brave babysitters willing to try it out, I think we are pretty much done buying cloth diapers for the next year. That means I will have only spent $200 on cloth diapers for one year, possibly more if he doesn't grow out of the sized ones I have. Since we are also using cloth wipes now and washing things only costs detergent, plus I will most likely be able to resell our diapers when we are done with them, all I can say at this point is, why on earth did I not try this with Wyatt??

Here are some photos of the diaper with Gerber prefold in place. Sorry, no baby, he's already asleep for the night!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Tricare Prime Preference Question

Ok, this has long been on my mind, so I'm just going to throw it out there because I'm a curious gal. Why do you military wives avoid using Tricare Prime when you have the option? I mean, when you can use an MTF, but you choose instead to use a provider in town. I used civilian doctors before I was married (not for anything like birth, though), and didn't really think the care was much different from that I receive now. (Except my doctor never deployed to Iraq or PCSd on me, of course!) Since being married, I've only had Tricare Prime and used the Naval Hospital here. I delivered both babies, one with a husband at sea, and have nothing but good to say about it. There are definitely things that didn't work out too well, but nothing I would say is particular to military care or that hospital. What has me really curious about it is the negative impression some people seem to have about military care. We see family practice doctors. They are split between the military providers and a few civilian ones on another floor. The only really negative experiences I've had there have been with the civilians. I avoid them at all costs. It does seem like there are a lot of residents, which is definitely an issue at times. They are hard to get an appointment with which messes up consistent care, and there is the experience factor. The doctor that delivered Wyatt was a resident, though, and she was the best one I've had here yet. I was so sad when she moved to Guam! I'm just really curious why people choose to not use an MTF and avoid the insurance hassles in the civilian world. Unless something horrible happens or it's unavailable, I will not be using in-town care while we are active duty. I just don't see the value of doing that.