Digitizing memories

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Since the school years of childhood, but perhaps to think of it, even while those of the nest, our house was invaded daily by a huge amount of paper , under different forms of touching, vibrant, beautiful and eclectic art forms of expression.

The initial joy and the miraculous feeling of being able to touch, the power and capacity of our young artists iconography of the house, which accoglievamo initially enraptured expression and cries of wonder, with the passage of time, he left as the place to smiles and happy faces always a bit ‘more concerned that the time already pregustavano little sublime in which, those wonderful jobs, those fun and colorful amplification of the self-changing of our children would have to enter force pushes accortacciamenti and lightning raids and decided, in our, by now, too small, closet hobby.

Oh yes, because now, of space, there no more and despite our good intentions, piles of paper stacked on the desk stand designed , waiting to be looked at with due attention and then being placed in some ring binders, now overflowing, I am sorry admit it, of perhaps too many wonderful works of art of our children.

How to happen to many parents, find extreme discomfort to part with these memories , particular expressions and shiny testimonies of the different stages of their childhood, of specific moments in their lives of children, but also that of us parents.

Yes, because many of those drawings, they helped us on many occasions, to feel more united and grow together as a family for a long time in fact, during the years of the pre-school, the designs of our children have played a role in so to speak, letters, or have allowed us as parents, to read those iconographic traits, as if they were real letters, through which our children are talking and communicating with us in a very effective . Through this interview is not written, but in fact, designed, we knew a lot about the state of their souls, their hardships, their questions. And not only that. Their designs in fact, there have only shown what was and made their world, but just as often , had the task of mostarci what was not there, that was missing and that he needed to find his way out and come forward.

Therefore, addressing the fateful moment when, inevitably, we must also deal with the need to make a selection, it is not for me thing.
But not for this, I do ‘pervinta. Like everywhere else, the important thing is clear ideas and start with small steps.

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Reflecting a little on the issue, in fact, I realized that I had about being too emotionally confused , which led me to keep everything, in the name of an idea of ​​the past but a bit ‘too theoretical and, certainly, a bit ‘too superficial.

consciously move the focus from the negative feeling, totally understandable, detachment from the past to the positive instead of the opening confident towards the future , has allowed me to actually keep only one who has a real value, not only as an element of the past, which concerns the childhood of our children, but also as an element that can tell us a lot about our present again as a family.

Use these parameters we are using, to take care of the most important memories and to ensure that they, and only they, have to actually be preserved with due care and attention.

1. Collect the drawings into a single point in the home. Ok, it is not elegant, but as the Americans say, an elephant is eaten one bite at a time. And if you do not know how big this elephant, will be completely diffcile understand how many bites you should eat it! We chose a corner of a room near a window. The battery makes us feel, but the fact that it is quite visible to our eyes all day, makes us always remember that this is a task to take care of as soon as there is occasion.

2. From that pile of papers, we started, in small bites, in fact, to make a selection , eliminating designs that can actually be trashed, which are not you have particular memory or that there seem to be more sighnificativi.

3. After this (lunga!) phase, begin to divide drawings by author and then by period precise (some had previously affixed to the date) or orientation (year or season). This task, which seems hard to say, it is really easy, if we have done a good job in preserving only the designs that we have memory!

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4. With the group selected sheets in hand, we can proceed to aupicabilmente digital scanning of them. We intend to devote a specific folder on your hard drive and make a backup copy of DVD or dedicated keys, dividing into sub-folders by period and author.
Convert to digital works will allow us to have many designs on hand and you can even work on it, presenting perhaps in a digital editing to be reviewed on-screen, as in a virtual art gallery.

5. And the originals? Depending on the number of scans, we will decide whether to proceed or save them all to a further selection of originals (50 to child?), Giving them new life (in a binder with a clear file divided by year and author), or choose to frame them rolling in their room.

6. Advantage for the future : certainly hope that this method will help us to better evaluate and weigh the designs of recent production, keeping only the works that respond to the ideas expressed above, making a selection at the moment and putting only those to be retained, author, year, before scanning them.

And you? What methods used to preserve (and not be constrained by) the family memories

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Less meat…at our table!

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For a certain period of time, I have been vegetarian.

The reasons why I have been, continue to be the same ones why, after some time, I came back to be omnivorous : the respect of the species killed and the uniqueness of their life, the care of my personal and my loved ones’ health and being mindful of the consequences of my choices and actions, even in the food compartment.

For me, these statements are not insignificant. In fact, they have a ‘fundamental importance in my life and still guide the ethical and food choices of our family.

“If nothing matters, there’s nothing to save.”

 

These few words have been printed inside me since few years, after having read a very famous book by Jonathan Safran Foer . A novel, or an essay, or an investigation, I do not know how to define it well, which for many has become the banner of vegetarians or vegans, but, in my opinion, is much more than that.

Indeed, this book, in my opinion, speaks more to omnivores than to vegetarians or vegans. In fact, it has no intention of dividing the world into categories of human meat eaters, ugly and bad, and of who does not eat it, good and compassionate. It would be too easy and, indeed, there would be no need for another book on the subject.

Who wants to know, in fact, as it is highly inhuman and horribly cruel, and the ‘ intensive livestock designed and kept alive, if you can still speak of life, exclusively for meat slaughter ready for the indiscriminate use of such (un) human will already have way of knowing. And, if they pursues theirs actions , they will certainly have their own reasons, which justify such behavior.

Into Who does not want to know, continues to quietly think this overall situation of our entire ecosystem, does not concern him at all , and really the meat they buy, cut and packaged, or already turned into food ready to be consumed, has been taken from animals killed without any kind of pain and that were grazing placidly until a few hours before the green lawns and courtyards clean and spacious depicted in advertising, which also unconsciously choose to eat every day.

Into Instead, what the author shows us very simply, with grace, sweetness and genuineness of those who move with purity of heart in the harshness of the world and among the diversity of people with whom they compare respectfully, is that, although man is born omnivorous and hunter, as well as collector and then, grower, has on his side the opportunity to choose to eat food that the animal (meat and fish for vegetarians, but also dairy products and eggs for vegans) can be consciously excluded or drastically reduced, in view of ethical values based on compassion for living beings on our planet and in the name of human existence that is raised in a equal and respectful towards other forms of life.

all this, first of all, because the consumption of meat, especially on the part of American civilization (on which the author bases his investigation, but that also reflects our European way of life) is absolutely disproportionate to the needs of the population of the U.S.: so that the total quantity could even feed the entire world population.

And, secondly, because this orientation is unidirectional, is not dictated by cultural propensities, and even less for geographical reasons, but by a gradual and calculated planning of ‘ flattening the taste according to rules of ruthless economic market , which produces meat for slaughter at very low cost and very high gain, exploiting animals now completely distorted both quality of life for genetic factors built in the laboratory.

Tthis political-economic strategy, which has over time changed the entire look of geo-territorial thousands and thousands of acres of American lands, used exclusively for the cultivation of maize for fodder, also GM , based on the consumption of meat and fish from intensive farming it is the base of nutrition (and health) of an entire nation, but not only of it.

However, what is clear from any segetarian, vegan or simply between omnivores aware, is that the world of food available to us, is rather vast and varied . Often (and this speech goes beyond direct analysis of meat and fish, but concerns all food) we are all mentally imprisoned by types of food preparation and consumption of it, dictated more by cultural habits, that choices , while it would be desirable to have a greater openness to other foods and ingredients, likewise nutrients that we simply do not know or are not relevant to our culture.

While it is true that you have to favor the consumption of local food, both for quality issues, but also for reasons of sustainability, it is true that nobody forces us to conceive the way we eat solely based on what that most of our peers or parents, have done and continues to do , just because we live in a certain place or belong to a certain food culture.

Let us take as an example the structure of an Italian dining, made of a temporal sequence of a cereal-based first course, of a protein main course and a vegetable side. If we think about it, this is a completely absurd law, if it means limited to stay within the boundaries of this theoretical framework. And everyone can, without detracting from the healthy and enviable tradition of Italian cuisine, enjoy the same nutritional components in a single course or in a different sequence or composition of them.

This kind of reasons, must be applied when it comes to meat and fish, too: essential for our daily protein intake, are absolutely replaceable with other plant foods (legumes , cereal protein, algae, oil seeds) or fleshless protein foods (dairy, eggs) that can and should support the diversity of our food choices both for our health and for that of our entire planet.

Everyone, even the most skeptical and reluctant to this kind of awareness, are aware of how many precious resources are used and depleted to support the intensive rearing and the industrial production of meat and fish. And in a cross-cultural and globalized world, it is equally absurd to focus on consumer choices and market-driven economic reasons, rather than to personal taste or ideological choices.

In my opinion, we must always have in mind that we all, as consumers, have the power to weigh our choices in the food department. Take as an example, fresh fish: from personal experience I know that the local markets in my area, are stocked with almost always the same types of not raised fresh fish: cod, sole, sea bass and sea bream, or fish already filleted (and for God’s sake, without thorns!) as Pangasius. Only rarely is another type of fish, but the seafood. Yet our Mediterranean Sea is full of oily fish, such as anchovies, sardines, anchovies, herring, mackerel or mackerel, sea bream, or pagello. But this fish, it is very little, if you ask why, all the merchants I’ve heard, they told me that mostly, all this kind of fish, not even is able to reach the general markets, because there is little demand from consumers. I can surely wonder it’s true, as a mackerel, absolutely comparable in taste and nutritional qualities to salmon and tuna, costs at least 5 times less per kilo compared to a noble sole!. Yet, on the rare occasions that I found it, I bought it and we all have tasted its delicacy and versatility. And for once, some cods and soles, were able to swim a little longer in the sea.

That is to say, that in our small way, we consumers can do much in directing the laws of the market. Ultimately, the final word belongs really to us and nobody else. Being able to diversify our food choices, especially for us omnivores, is a matter of great ethical value, as well as for health and economic developmental reasons.

In our family, we have never been of greatest consumers of meat. We have always tried to vary the protein alternatives on the table. However, since the children have become older and have started eating school lunches and taking part to social events, we noticed that both had suddenly changed their taste, preferring far produced and ready for use foods, almost always meat, to those based on vegetables or fish. Not to mention the vegetables, which at one point seemed not to tolerate even the sight of them!

It was not easy, and in some cases still is, getting progressively with the patience and tenacity of a Chinese drop, to redirect their converted taste , to the path of variety and to the attractiveness of a non-synthetic, but natural taste. I must say that I got great results. Even the most stubborn and recalcitrant one, that if it depended only on him, would go on with meat, pasta, pizza and fries only.

It’s been a gradual, but consistent path, and nowadays we are seated on a once a week consumption of meat (local, organic and comes from animals that have had room to move around and eat grass pasture or bean), without counting the Sunday lunch at grandparents’ or those children eat at the school canteen (which in 60-70% of cases unfortunately involves prepared, although fortunately, organic, meat or frozen fish. ). And for the rest a varied choice of vegetables, dairy products, eggs and oil seeds.

Actually, we don’t miss meat at all, especially because over time we have learned to use legumes as protein-based and absolutely equivalent meal to flesh based ones, even in methods of preparation. In fact, I must admit, on many occasions, it has earned us a additional great taste!

 

To give you an example, here is be the best veggie burgers we have ever eaten!

And plus, we usually serve them the American way, with lots of ketchup and in an homemade bun!

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Cloth diapers: our first eight months

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It’s been a while I plan to update the progress here on our experience with cloth diapers.
In fact 8 months now abundant that we use them. Our experience is overwhelmingly positive. We do not feel the slightest lack of disposable, though, I must admit, I continue to still be a little surprised.
I am writing this, because all ‘beginning, I confess I was afraid that I had embarked on a’ company of my biggest strengths: a newborn baby, two brothers under the age of 8 and a plausible post-partum fatigue, made me look at those diapers of cloth, all well washed and sorted under the changing table, as obstacles to be overcome or as commitments to be taken to the absolute Good , but which in reality had little to do with the way we live. Indeed, harbored strong fears of having bitten off more than you can chew , with the feeling of having to make that clear we had to adapt to a situation that, at best, looked forward to as a sustainable and healthy but that required, as far as I was concerned, the burden of having to absorb an additional commitment.

Surprisingly, however, not only washable have positively rejected my gloomy pessimistic expectations, but I must admit that, although still not sure if I’m saying something positive or not, our lives with washable, has not changed not In fact, the flexibility and the comfort of cloth diapers, have allowed us to forget that they are doing something right over the good for ourselves, for the ecosystem and the health of our son and our portfolio .
Of course, these values ​​have initially focused our theoretical decisions, but now, I have to admit, we’ve really enjoyed it and probably we would continue anyway, even apart from them! That fact that we made, is that instead were precisely the washable to adattatarsi perfectly to our lives and smoothly, without effort, but rather with more satisfaction and total sustainability! Here is a first assessment Our experience shows that the different types adopted and the different models that we used during the past few months and we continue to use to this day.

THE FIRST 3 MONTHS:
We use only all-in-two (AI2), ie, diaper fabric combined with a variable Waterproof in pul.
As a start, we stopped at two types of AI2: the muslin , rectangular sheets of cotton like gauze or muslin in a very sparse plot of 80×80 cm.

Our choice fell on muslin 10 Disana in organic cotton that we bought at a very reasonable price. They are practical to use, just know some basic folds. A little ‘challenging get carried away when the child begins to fidget on the changing table, but if you start now, when the child is still a baby, I highly recommend them. In addition, I have used them for other purposes: as a cover sheet to cradle in the summer, as the basis for the change when we are away from home and as a bib or towel after bath. One of the great, commendable advantages of muslin is the speed of drying: beaten.
Disadvantages: you have to know the folds and do not have a strong absorption, but it is a disadvantage that can be remedied with the addition of a booster (or a strip of fabric that is padded by reinforcement). However for liquid stools of infants should be fine without reinforcement. Are not the best gear on the fly, but a lot depends on practical experience.

Require a closure. We used the snappies , fantastic and very effective inventions of modern technology, which have supplanted the traditional safety pins of yore.

Another AI2 we used a lot in the first three months was fitted (or a preformed absorbent pants) Popolini Size Two bamboo , a fantastic diaper light but absorbent, little bulky and very comfortable that provides the possibility to adapt in accordance with the size of the grip through practical press studs.

The main disadvantage is that this type of diapers must be purchased in sizes. Our size S lasted up to 4 months. They also require drying time a bit ‘long, approximately 48 hours in winter.

For both AI2, we used waterproof cover Popolini Popo-wrap , which include Velcro Customizable according to the size and bulk of the diaper.

 

For the night, the first three months we felt safer to use the disposable, the number of 2 per night.

FROM 3 TO 6 MONTHS:
We continued with the set-up before and after abandoning those in bamboo because it was too small, we oientati on AI2 fitted Popolini called Ultrafit , in organic cotton.

We have started to use them also for the night (having eliminated the intermediate gear nocturnal), because they have incredible absorbency, even if they are rather bulky and dry slowly in winter, although in less time than those in bamboo.

In addition, we have added some other types of washable as All in One (AI1) in all respects similar as practical to disposable diapers because they are integers or not they include additional booster fixed or mobile .

Our choices have been oriented on the Gro-Via in the version Hybrid (combining the simplicity of AI1 with the flexibility of mobile inserts) are ideal for changing away from home , also thanks to absorbent booster that stick with buttons to the body of the diaper and are also superfast to be dried. The only flaw is a thigh perhaps too Sgambati, who more than once allowed the liquid to escape.

We have also adopted the diaper pocket , ie AI1 diapers that can be filled through an internal pocket with one or more absorbent inserts.
We chose an Italian product, Naturalmamma pocket organic cotton and microfleece inserts.

I have the pocket commendable advantage of being adjustable for size (these range from 3 to 12-18 months), through the buttons on the front and stretch through life. The major disadvantage is the slow drying of the diaper. We we purchased them in a cost-effective supply of 10, with double inserts included, which allowed us to be able to overcome this problem that would otherwise be taken into account well before the” purchase.

6-7 MONTHS FROM NOW TO:
For batttesimo we made to give the grandparents of the beautiful and colorful AI1/pocket of Totsbots EasyFix with interior microfleece very comfortable and absorbent, although not resulting bulky at all.

 

Their particular type provides a long strip of microfleece that folds first on itself and then goes inserted internally to a pocket similar to that of the pocket, by doing insert. But who has the practicality to stay attached to the diaper and to be able to roll out before washing, so as to speed up the drying (which is fast).

We are using the same brand of AI2 Bamboozle Stretch in fabric soft and absorbent bamboo we use with the Waterproof. These practical and comfortable, although a bit ‘slow, like all those in bamboo, when drying. Ranging in sizes and each of them can in turn be adapted to two different stages, via buttons on the front part.

This, however, is a cover of Mother-ease that has side buttons instead of the stretch. It ‘easy as changing speed, but I definitely bulky (does balloon effect), although I must admit that’ much containment safety from leaks coming from the layer below. The buttons, for a panty cover, in my opinion, are not a good idea, why limit the duration of size.
I must admit though that I bought them especially attracted by fantasies summer and sea, but maybe if I could go back, do not buy it.

During the days of September, the heat and probably of less frequent (mea culpa!) Led to a small irritation candida . For two weeks abundant, on the advice of the pediatrician, we went back to disposable to prevent moisture aggravated the situation so that the cream could act locally without damaging the tissues of diapers.

This experience, involuntarily, allowed me to do, on balance, a step forward in the understanding of the structure right for my baby. For example, I have now completely removed the veils raccoglifeci paper ( similar in all respects to a kitchen paper or a toilet paper that are thrown in the toilet and allow you to remove the big , without too dirty diapers). In addition to being a waste of paper and an additional cost, these veils are impregnavano of pee, making the wet remain in contact with the genital part for too long. For sensitive skin is not good.
I then found a new simple, economical, environmentally friendly and most importantly, very effective for the skin: the veils washable microfleece.

These in fact have the ability to pass the wet state below, wiping immediately and then isolating the skin from wet just enough to not cause irritation. You buy in packs of 10, low prices and can be washed and reused indefinitely. In addition, with solid stool of children weaned, they are comfortable, because empty into water without any problems.
For those who have children with this type of predisposition to irritations, we also sell the silk drapes burette (a raw silk by the powerful healing properties for the skin), which can be useful at times of inflammation.
After this experience, we have put in stand-by Naturalmamma pocket, probably because their fund organic cotton things relatively easy stagnation. Now we use them to change on the fly and always with micro stuck internally and with layer of cells in contact with the skin.

Another important aspect that we have experienced, was the need to simplify and streamline our baggage of cloth diapers. Especially in anticipation of the coming months by Walker and until the potty, we bought prefolds , or rectangular strips of cotton divided vertically into three columns from two longitudinal seams that need to take a firm center pad .

The prefold usatissimi are in the U.S., because they combine the advantages of muslin (very cheap) absorbency of upholstered furniture, without the need to acquire a great deal of manual work, as the folds are facilitated by stitching. We bought the kit cost of Real Nappies , New Zealand company that supplies public hospitals that (civile!) nation, which also include panties waterproof pieces of velcro to life (and thus better adapted to the circumference the child’s life). But I have in mind, if there is need to sew the next prefold alone, being really very easy to coinfezionare home recycling old towels and sheets flannel or cotton.
For now they are doing great. Comfortable, not bulky, the panty is well made and well-fitting, and are very easy to use. They can also be filled with additional booster, even then for the night, our next step, soon, we will adopt.

For days where I work and where the baby is with his grandparents and changes on the fly out of the house, I’m still using the large set of AI1 Totsbots. Grandparents are well and reported no difficulty when changing diapers.

IN CONCLUSION:
The first eight months have gone very well. It ‘was, and still is, a’ very important experience for all of us in the family and, I would say, even for those who attended closely and to all those with whom we interact daily, first of all the mothers of other children who did not know the washable.

Here is a summary what I learned in these 8 months :

I learned that cloth diapers are highly customizable and flexible depending on the child and its specific features (My example has sensitive skin and girocoscia large, are factors that I now have in mind before to buy), and also depending on the growth stages. Council to buy various types and to limit the temptation to buy too much too soon.
In my case, in fact, the 10-pack of Naturalmamma was perhaps too much to purchase a number of diapers, although I can not say that we have recovered economically or has taken a buggeratura. Are in fact good diapers, which are currently on stand-by, but that does not rule out use again when AI1 Totsbots will become too small.

– Another item that I have experienced, is the practicality of the change. Using the very AI2, now that the baby moves a lot on the changing table, I learned stuff already in the diaper and keep it ready for the change already after drying. And now, in all respects, the speed of change is comparable with that of the disposable.

– In addition, I understand the need to avoid the Manichaeism : do not get caught by hand washable and consider a final choice and from which there is no turning back. Of course, I can not help feeling a bit ‘guilty when I use the diapers of paper, but if I do there is always a need behind, so it is always to be considered a temporary solution. In any case, the important thing is that they are washable the general rule and not the absolute imperative.

– If you plan well, I learned that the need for diapers is minimal in terms of economic cost. In our case, this is not 100% successful, perhaps I could make more informed choices, especially during the first few months, but I must also admit that there was a diaper or a type that has been left by the wayside: I used everything and all I have now a well-defined idea and opinion.

What are your experiences with washable? Which types are best suited to the age and circumstances of your children?

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