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The Toybox

people for the conservation of limited amounts of indignation

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waiting for the news; in essence, being useful
children of dune - leto 1
My youngest sister is theoretically in labor, so at any time, there *should* be Nephew, to add to Niece, Baby Niece, and Former Stepnephew and Former Stepniece to the Pantheon of Children I Can Play With And Not Have to Give Birth To. This continues to be a satisfactory way to acquire babies and not have to pay for them. Though weirdly, I am still called into diaper changing duty, but that is because I'm just that freaking good at it. You think I'm joking--I'm totally not.

People underestimate the power of laziness. The thing is, the lazy are efficient. We mark the problem, look at the least labor intensive and/or fastest solution, and get down to it. We know these things. Even the most horrific diaper monstrosity can be completed in under thirty seconds if you know how to set up your workstation.

Welcome to Jenn's Realm of Useless Information.

Changing a Baby: Get In, Get Out, Do Not Pass Out

a.) attach child to surface

I use floors because of a.) laziness and b.) convenience. You cannot always find a baby changing station. But have blanket, will travel; you will always, always have a floor. Gravity? Not your friend. They can slither all they want--place babywipe container on belly for anchoring when they reach the creep and crawl stage and use one knee to block lateral movement. You are set.

On changing table, basic same procedure, but keep eye on Child at Wriggling Stage. They have cosmic teleportation powers of falling. Almost a mutation, even. Which is why God created floors. Probably for me.

b.) prepare wipies and diaper

This is the least considered but ultimately most useful. By this time, you should know instinctively whether this is one of the three stages of baby mess.

1.) ick
2.) oh my
3.) nuclear disaster

Use your own judgement. I use a two wipie, four wipie, eight wipie (not kidding) pattern in general, but usually have double that ready for use. I am *free* with the wipies. My motto? There are never too many wipies.

Shake them out and pile them--do not leave folded. That will slow down your time. Piles are friendly.

Stretch out diaper pre-removal; if it is a boy, later, you will understand The Magic of the Pee Mid-Air. The little bastards do it deliberately. Girls are more subtle. You won't know until your knee is moist. We won't discuss it. Just, no.

Stretch the diaper, lie it beside child to mirror current butt placement. Breathe. No, really, if this is a stage three, oxygen deprivation is an issue.

c. lift, pull, switch

Tricky, but doable.

Unlatch velcro. Double check baby mess stage. Take a second if you are new at this. Grasp ankles firmly, lift child until butt clears floor. Wipe quickly with diaper (God help you if this is stage three). Push Dark Diaper of Darkness away. Don't, in the name of God, look at it until you are at least a journeyman. Hell, why would you anyway? Place other diaper under child, grab wipie, clean lower suface of child, lower child onto diaper.

This should take no more than five seconds. Even nuclear.

Do not let go of ankles. You have two hands. Keep those legs up and clear.

Pull upper edge over child so Gleeful Evil Open Air Peeing does not hit you in face. No, I'm not talking about this, like, ever. Hold three seconds, then commence with cleaning.

Continue to hold ankles.

Babies are easier to dust than furniture. Yes, it looks like End Days, but it is not. Visualization exercises might help the apprentice level--this is not horror. This is vivid yellow paint. Vivid--do you really want the mess color spectrum? No, you do not. Just go with it.

Wipe thoroughly. Quickly. If child is unusually--oh, let's say plump--check crevasses. Powder, lotion, baby ointment, whatever (I never used anything except the diaper rash stuff myself since Child was blissfully free of most skin irritations unless he was ill, but other people have, so that's your window for doing so). Crease of thigh and leg--Very Important. Like, a breeding ground of ick and darkness.

d. closing

Lower child completely into diaper. Velcro closed, hold child above head, yell in triumph. Also, breathe, you may be getting dizzy. Lower child in case you are about to pass out.

See why I like the floor?

Thirty seconds. Done.

e. dispose of the evidence.

Wrap all wipies and diaper into a tiny compact ball and hide it somewhere. Fine, trash it. But also fun to place in middle of table, because if you have a baby, you know this: it might be days until they realize it's there and if your sister made you do like, seven changes that day? That's called revenge. You might even stack some into a kind of modern art sculpture and be completely surprised they don't want to use it for a conversational piece at parties. Suburban Family in Decline. Not that I've ever tried that. Or almost pulled it off.

And that concludes Useless Information.

Speaking of, I was banned from further baby clothes buying even though Macy's has their forty percent/forty percent going on and I'm sorry, but Ralph Lauren overalls are totally worth it.

"This is the least considered but ultimately most useful. By this time, you should know instinctively whether this is one of the three stages of baby mess.

1.) ick
2.) oh my
3.) nuclear disaster..."

We used to call #3 "Mount Vesuvius". You know, the ones that would go off with actual noise, and often come out with such force that they'd actually come out the diaper and go up the backside of the child in question?

destroying all clothing in its path. Yes. *twitch* Dark times.

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*dies laughing* Oh man, yes. The bizarre ways that happens! It's just--so gross, yet so deeply neat!

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Man, if I could glue them down, I *would*. The second they hit the ability to control their limbs somewhat, it all goes downhill. And creativity must ensue.

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You must be kidding. This is the *epitome* of Useful Information. There is no more Useful Information in the *entire world*. Indeed, all other useful information may be considered a subset of this information.

PS I called the Distant Future of Fandom over to read this, as she's about to take the Babysitting Course.

PPS Still considering that betrothal thing (DFoF is 12), though the combination would probably lead to Skynet. But we might just end up with a flying robot suit, a hard notion to resist.

I swear I'm glad I have no babies to buy for right now, I'd be even broker than I am, (I went to check out the baby stuff for my sister who has to give a shower gift for a co-worker) have you seen the little baby PUMA outfits..and they had the most adorable Ralph Lauren striped button shirt..they are too cute and sales, oh my god, it's like they are giving them away.

...oh my God I want that. So. Much.

They had *tons* of Izod rompers and thingers and I was trying to get one of each.

I just friended you, uhm, yesterday I think, but boy am I ever so glad for this extremely...informative... addition to my daily friendslist reading. Of course, my only experience with diapers was in elementary school (way, WAY back then, and I hope it stays that way) with my best friends' younger brother. I distincly remember the color and texture of a glass of old mustard. Mustard spilled all over the place. And yes, the peeing, which we will never talk about again.

So, thank you for reminding me, how could I have ever done without.
Though, I must admit, it wasn't quite what I was expecting when I added you to the reading list. Oh fandom, I love you so. ;-)

*sad* Oh yes. The spillage. *twitch*

If you ever write babyfic, it will be useful! *nodnodnod*

Hee! Too true!

Also, you are a true Diaper Master when you can change a toddler as they run by without them ever laying down. Bonus points if they are cloth diapers. Double bonus if they are the kind that use pins. (Seriously, the cloth diapers with velcro tabs are the bestest things ever when your kid's allergic to the disposable kind.)

Okay, now I'm impressed. My younger sisters were on cloth diapers when they were born; I find that just *amazing*.

Yes. I think my youngest brother mostly got changed in the trunk of my mom's minivan. I have actually never changed a diaper. So I will file this away for possible future use. I do recall being somewhat impressed by the amount of poop such a small child could produce. It makes me wonder if they make carseat padding that is machine washable, nowadays.

It's like some kind of weird interdimensional buttgate or something. I just don't think physics can explain the quantity.

I think this needs metaquoting. May I?

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It only takes once. Best training *ever*.

The only thing I'd add is that the new parents I've spoken to have said that diaper technology is disturbingly better than they last remembered it. A 12 week old baby is now sleeping mostly through the night b/c the diaper can hold that long no problems. Though I suspect random poo prison breaks might still happen on the smallest, the scientists at Diaper Co deserve our thanks.

FYI, best diapers ever: just after formula or major diet change. RAINBOW COLORS.

*recalls hearing a deeply disturbed voice from the other room yell 'That's just not right!'*

Oooh yeah. The poo issue was the biggest problem during the--combination times of solidification but not so much. Oh God I am flashbacking. Must bleach. Must bleach....

The colors--you really *don't* get over the colors. You just repress.

As you've already been told... NOT useless information. Well, okay, useless to me. My baby graduated high school three weeks ago.

and.... Velcro?

Oh, is it capitalized? Dammit, I always forget!

3.) nuclear disaster

[dies of laughter]

Breathe. No, really, if this is a stage three, oxygen deprivation is an issue.

[is dead, thus further laughter impossible]

Am now going to forward to every single sister who has ever looked at me, their baby and the nappy pile.

It takes a very special combination of total disregard for disgusting and a lack of awareness of personal privacy combined with reckless glee and possibly, once, a stopwatch.

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Oooh yeah. it's only terrifying until you realize those creatures are really hard to break (I tested that in ways I cannot discuss). Then it's ankle grabbing casualness and thoughtful consideration (at the solid food stage) of what on earth they ate that could possibly made that.

The fun part was the first time I changed my son in front of other people. My mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother were leaping toward me during in horror. It was awesome.

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