Monday, March 22, 2010

Hi! I’m Suzanne…

I’ve been going back through my blog and I realized that I’ve never done this so here goes. Who am I and what brought me to making and selling diapers and special needs items.
Who is the “Suzanne” in Suzanne’s Special Kids?
I’m a late 30’s mom of 2 wonderful kids. Both of them are challenged but in very different ways. My oldest is extremely bright, high IQ, and is an Aspie. She has OCD tendencies, ADHD tendencies, and sensory issues. She loving and wonderful and turning 14 so becoming an independent young lady. The tendencies she shows makes her a bit challenging as does the fact that she is now a teenager.  My youngest is multiply challenged on the other end of the rainbow. He has so many physical and cognitive challenges yet he has the most gentle and loving personality. I am first and foremost a mother. It’s all I ever really wanted to do. I love to sew. I got this from my mother and her mother who both sewed regularly. Now I have the opportunity to provide options to other mothers with challenged children. This makes my passion well worth it.
I also love to read, cook and bake. I picked up a love of gardening from my grandmother and I always have plants inside and out. I am a Christian and very proud of that. I believe that God doesn’t make bad things happen to people but he does sometimes allow them so that we may grow. I believe that children like my son are born different so we may be reminded of what pure love is. I am honest, trustworthy, and humbled that God chose me to care for 2 of his precious souls. I’m happy to be a mom and wishing for more.
Why do I sew cloth diapers?
I used cloth diapers part time for my oldest because they just weren’t that easy to use. When I got pregnant with my son I found the PooPockets pattern. I loved the idea of a “one size” diaper. Birth to potty training all in one…YEA!! Just add a few pairs of plastic pants or wool covers and diapering is done. That pattern is so quick to sew and uses easy to find fabrics. I fell in love with making them and how cute they look. The creative process just took over. I could use any soft flannel and have unique cute diapers that were easy to care for. The best part was that I only had to pay for them ONCE! No buying more every few days and throwing them in the trash after each use. I began buying other patterns and drafting my own. I think I printed off every free pattern on the web! LOL!! If you love cute baby bums and even tolerate sewing….this is addictive!
Why sew with special needs in mind?
At my 20 week ultrasound we were given some challenging news. Our baby has congenital hydrocephalus. He may or may not have spina bifida. We were sent to see a few specialist and my journey into the world of special needs began. Our son will be born at 30 weeks with parts of his brian never forming. He will have cerebral palsy, epilepsy and lung disease among many other issues. It is a learning process every day. My designs are based on what works or doesn’t work for my son. Many of my testers will never see anything but my son’s bum…they aren’t all wonderful. ;) Every so often…one really works. It fits well, absorbs wonderfully, washes thoroughly, and dries in a decent amount of time. For me…that’s the perfect diaper. I really like 1 piece items since issues with high tone during a diaper change make it hard to get things fastened sometimes. I look at our challenges when diapering and use them to work toward the perfect diaper.
What made me choose toddler sizes and larger?
I’m usually up for making some wonderful itty bitty diapers so feel free to ask. However, I decided there are so few options for toddlers and larger. My son is now in kindergarten and wearing little boys clothes-not from the toddler section anymore. The options are, well, not that great. I will continue to redesign my patterns to fit as my little guy grows. I have patterns for newborn all the way up to 2XL.
I know that kids and adults alike will need undies. Just because their body gets larger doesn’t mean they can always use the potty. More likely than not, my son will always need absorbent undies. I prefer that phrase to diapers. “Diapers” just seem so babyish and he’s a big boy now. Besides, adults don’t wear diapers…they are absorbent briefs or tabbed briefs or something like that. It’s about preserving dignity and being respectful.
What are my favorite fabrics and why?
I’ve tried sooo many fabrics. I am currently in love with a bamboo/hemp blend. It’s super soft, highly absorbent and just a wonderful diaper and undies fabric. It stays soft when line dried and doesn’t hold odors. Honestly, I love most fabrics so this is a difficult question to answer. I still love cotton flannels, hemp/cotton fleece, and the old standby… cotton birdseye weave. I have really begun to love wool. I know, when most people hear “wool” they think “itchy!”. That is deceptive because it becomes itchy based on how it is spun and processed. I have a wonderful supplier, Jeanne, at Natures Fabrics. She carries only the best, softest wools. You’ll never believe it’s wool, honestly! I’ve had my mom rub it on her arm (she allergic, btw) with NO REACTION. It’s all in the way it’s spun and processed. If you aren’t sure…please, go to NaturesFabrics.com and get a sample…you’ll be very pleasantly surprised.
WOW, this got longer then I planned. Well it’s by no means everything but it’s a little insight into my mind and my life.
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1 comment:

The Soldatke family said...

Hi Suzanne,

Just wanted you to know I found your blog. I too, have a child affected with congenital hydrocephalus. He is two, and is our fourth child. I found cloth diapers on line when I was pregnant, and before we recieved his diagnosis @20 weeks. We plan on cloth diapering him as LONG as possible... I like your big onesies too. I am starting to work on some of these for my son, who is just getting out of 24 month clothing. The regular t-shirt and his low tone just don't make a good combo.

Thanks for writing your blog :)