Archive for February, 2012
One great thing about nursing is getting some quality reading time in 8-10 times a day. A lot of what I’m reading these days is baby-related, so I decided to share.
What’s in my Kindle?
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth- I’m only 13% into this book that our pediatrician recommended. We’ve already implemented some of his suggestions like earlier bedtime and watching for “tired” signs. It’s a slow read, but helpful and shares great tips.
Baby-Led Weaning: The Essential Guide to Introducing Solid Foods and Helping Your Baby to Grow Up a Happy and Confident Eater by Gill Rapley and Tracey Murkett- What a mouthful! I’m 30% and enjoying it so far. Their ideas make sense to me, to let your baby lead the way when it comes to eating, but I’ve yet to get into how it actually works. The first 1/3 of the book is dedicated to convincing me to try their way. I’m ready to try, tell me how!
Bringing Up Bebe: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting by Pamela Druckerman- Not started and don’t know much about it.
The Happiest Toddler on the Block by Harvey Karp- I haven’t started this one, but it’s written by the author who wrote The Happiest Baby on the Block, which helped us make one happy baby! Can he help us make a happy toddler, too?
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen- Not baby related, but fun. 15% in and I’ll keep reading. This book I rented for free through the Amazon Kindle library (great new feature for Amazon Prime members).
Not in the Kindle?
The Diary of a Mad Fat Girl by Stephanie McAfee- This is the next book for the BlogHer Book Club. I’m only through chapter one and I better get cracking! Look for my review on March 8!
And I can’t forget about the baby! Our favorite baby book at the moment is Baby Cakes by Karma Wilson.
What’s in your Kindle? How do you keep busy while nursing?
This makes me sad. It will probably make you sad, too.
I love comments! I don’t get many, but I will be open about how I treat the comments on this blog.
- I try to reply to all comments by email or here on the blog. I typically respond on the blog to help keep the discussion going (ha).
- If you have a blog, I try to visit your blog and comment back.
- I do NOT delete “negative” comments, critical comments, or comments stating a contradictory opinion. I welcome open discussion.
- I delete all comments that go to my SPAM folder, if they are SPAM. I’ve yet to have a real comment go to the SPAM folder, so this seems fair.
- I delete comments that will likely offend others. For example, I will delete any comment like “I hate [insert religion/ethnicity/physical trait] people!” I don’t want this blog associated with offensive language or hate.
- If the comment is only offensive to me, my plan is to leave it. For example, “Your blog is stupid,” will stay. I can say what I want, and so can
my parents the reader(s).
Although I am new to the blogging world, I believe that it is a best practice if you allow comments, to allow both critical and complimentary comments. If you only allow comments agreeing with you, then what’s the point of having comments? I want the comment section to be a discussion, not just a place to give me a virtual high-five (but feel free to give me those, too).
If how I deal with comments changes, I will update this page accordingly.
Here’s a high-five gif to help you with your comments:
This post will be permanently located here and easily accessed through the main menu bar.
- Seek professional help. See a lactation consultant both for problems and for reassurance that you are on the right path. The lactation consultant can weigh the baby before and after you nurse so you can know exactly how much milk your baby is getting during each feeding. Your pediatrician is (well, should be) a good source for breastfeeding troubleshooting and the practice might even have a lactation consultant on staff.
- Educate yourself. Take a breastfeeding class, visit a La Leche League meeting, listen to PREGtastic podcasts, or read books. You might not get it until you do it, but more knowledge about breastfeeding cannot hurt.
- Massage, massage, massage. Massage as you nurse and massage as you pump. Massage from the outside of the breast toward the nipple, helping to drain the ducts and soften and hard spots. This will help prevent engorgement.
- Learn the signs and symptoms of mastitis. Seek medical attention immediately if you experience any symptoms of mastitis.
- Learn to hand express or use a pump during pregnancy (at least look at the directions). It will be easier to learn these techniques before you are also learning to take care of a newborn.
What breastfeeding tips do you want to add?
You might be interested in Tips for Breastfeeding Success: Part 1.
- If you want to come visit, then just ask. You’re welcome anytime. I just want to clean up and/or brush my teeth first.
- Stay for long as you’re comfortable.
- If you want to hold the baby, just ask. Sometimes I forget to offer!
- Please do not clean my house for me, unless you’re like Monica from Friends and really like cleaning. It makes me feel awkward.
- Don’t feel like you need to bring something.
- Take some pictures (only if you want to, of course)!
I hope you visit, because we like you. I loved when friends visited our new baby. It was so nice to have some adult time. We did set “visiting hours,” but that wasn’t meant to exclude visitors. It was just helpful to have a bit of a schedule and we were flexible when people asked to come at other times. If/when we have another baby, we’ll leave it more open if we can. It’s hard to know what to expect and
it turns out much of the advice on the internet and in books is a bit over the top about visitors . No need to sugar coat it. There is some really terrible advice on mommy blogs and forums about visitors. Everyone I know has better manners than me and knows what to do when visiting a new mom/baby.
Here’s my (unsolicited) advice: new moms, you have plenty to worry about; don’t waste your time worrying about how visitors are going to behave.
P.S. Thank you to all of our friends and family who visited our little family!
This is a paid review for BlogHer Book Club, but the opinions expressed are my own.
When The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown appeared on the doorstep a month ago, I took one look at the page count (353) and thought for sure that I would never finish it, but it was interesting enough to keep me plugging along at a decent pace until I did, in fact, finish.
If you love a novel with a humbling use of vocabulary (I learned what the word bucolic means), plenty of references to Shakespeare, and a decent story on the side, you will probably enjoy The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown. It is a story about three sisters who went separate ways in adulthood, but are pulled back together by their mother’s illness. The only thing the sisters appear to share is that they are named after Shakespearean characters.
Brown takes us through the lives of the three sisters, intertwining stories of the present, their adult pasts, and their childhood pasts. She writes in the first person plural, a term I learned by reading the handy “Readers Guide” at the end of the book. This narration style confused me, but only for a few chapters.
Although each of the sisters represents an extreme version of a hippie, a materialistic New Yorker (complete with debt) and a risk-averse homebody, they are relatable. The story reminds me a of a quick-spreading rumor. It is intriguing, but believable, and I’m left wanting more.
Join the conversation about The Weird Sisters at the BlogHer Book Club!
Who wants my copy?
I am a mom, reader and researcher of all things baby, and breastfeeder for five months. I am not an expert, but the advice in this list helped me. Some of the tips are from me, but most I picked up along the way from doctors, nurses, lactation consultants, and google. When I got to number 16, I decided to break the post into two parts. Here is part one.
1. Relax. Imagine you are in yoga class and take a deep breath. Remain calm. If things are not going well, staying relaxed is important. When you are stressed, your baby will stressed. You don’t want to equate nursing with anxiety and stress for you or your baby. Try to relax and make it something enjoyable for both of you.
2. Spend time skin-to-skin. Skin-to-skin contact with your newborn in the first few weeks will not only help establish a strong bond, but will make your baby want to eat. A lactation consultant explained to me that if a baby is not waking up to eat, to put her directly on your chest and that the scent will trigger her appetite. I spent a lot of time with baby Q on my chest the first three weeks, which no doubt contributed to our success with breastfeeding. It is important that you are not overheated. Your body is great at helping to regulate your baby’s body temperature. Lay the baby in diaper only on your bare chest and place a light blanket over you.
3. Breastfeed as soon as possible after delivery. Try to breastfeed at the first signs of rooting. I saw my baby opening her mouth and asked the nurse if I could go ahead and try to feed her. She latched right on and has done so every 3 hours since (ha).
4. Breastfeed on demand. Breastfeed at the first signs of hunger. If you wait until your baby is really hungry and screaming, it’s much more difficult to get a good latch. Sometimes my baby wanted to eat every hour, sometimes every three. But for the most part if she was awake and fussing, she was hungry. There were times that I thought surely it’s something else, but it turns out I was wrong, which leads me to pacifiers.
5. Don’t use pacifiers for the first few days. Use your breast to pacify. This was hard for me. I think I gave her a pacifier after two days. I should have waited until the third day when I was completely confident my milk supply had arrived. Breastfeeding takes getting used to and there were times I felt I just couldn’t take it and wanted to give her a pacifier instead. The problem with that was that she was hungry; pacifiers don’t fill your baby’s belly. According to our doctors, nursing to pacify will help your milk supply come in more quickly.
6. Drink a lot of water. A lot.
7. Sleep as much as possible in the beginning. If you are well rested, it will be easier for you to breastfeed on demand and use your breasts to pacify instead of a pacifier.
8. Try not to introduce a bottle until baby is 3 or 4 weeks old. This might not be possible if you are supplementing with formula or have to go back to work.
9. Create a comfortable area in your home to breastfeed. Gather pillows, blankets, a water bottle, and anything else you might need to make your breastfeeding spot a happy place.
10. Trust your instincts. Don’t worry about what other people are doing or what people say you should do. Only you know what is best for you and your baby. It is fine to seek advice from other moms, but feeding your baby is not a contest.
Each time we visit the pediatrician, I describe recent bowel movements and ask, “Is this normal?” The response is always the same, “Yes.” Then I clarify, “So it’s only a problem if it’s white, black, or bloody, right?” Doc replies, “Right.”
She’s a busy woman, I’m sure she hasn’t noticed that I ask this every time. She always seems slightly amused by this line of questioning. And she probably knows where it comes from- the internet. The internet is helpful to new parents, but also misinforms.
I know I need to stop asking google about baby poop. I know the three things that are signs something is wrong (black, white, blood). I just can’t stop! Until today. Today, I found something that will make me stop asking google for information about baby poop. It’s the baby poop decoder. It has pictures and smiley faces.
Decode your baby’s poop.
What do you ask google about? What do you worry about for no good reason?