Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Family Bed

I know, I know. She'll never leave the bed. She'll be spoiled. I've heard it and I'm sticking with it. Having M in bed with us is ideal. She fusses and she gets a boob. When she's done she lets go and we continue to snooze. Really she doesn't even need to fuss. I feel her signs and in seconds she has food. It may sound crazy, but it's true. I love her being so close. To me it's the most amazing bonding experience to share sleep space with her.

Now the husband is not as much of a fan. My plan for M is for her to decide when she wants to leave the bed. Honestly I don't care when that is. I have a small window to have her like this. Before I know it she is going to be giving attitude and begging to go on dates. We've had the discussion several times. At this point he's just like 'whatever I'm done hearing about your hippie ways and you'll do it anyway.' Which is right.

We have a firm mattress which is ideal for baby. When she's in the bed I take off my pillow and pull my blankets down to my waist. She sleeps on my side of the bed, and probably will for some time. When we first started this I slowly transitioned her into the bed. She would start off in her Rock N' Play and then at six am when she woke up she would come in bed with me. Then I started putting her in at her three am wake up. The past several nights she has been in the whole night. This was more for me than it was for her. She would stay in bed all day with me if she could. I would too. I think I needed to slowly get in to this because of first time mom fear of something going wrong. Then once I saw that she was safe and this was doable we were set. I'm loving it. It feels right. Like it's what we are supposed to be doing. M and I also share the shower. When I get done I bring her in with me. She loves it. I love it. Everybody is happy. I'm telling you, when you and your baby are so much apart of each other's routines and so close it's magic. The attached life is a great life.

Here are some links on how to bed share safely and the benefits of doing so:




Sunday, August 28, 2011

A Day In The Park

Today was beautiful. The weather was perfect and in the shade it was even better. My sister and I decided to take the babies to the park for a picnic. M is lovin' her cousin who is a couple months older than her. Well really she usually makes him cry by having her hands on him. The day was awesome. We got sandwiches and headed to the park to lay out some blankets. My sister read books to the babies and we just hung around and talked. We took them over to the swings and luckily we both fit on them. They love being outside. I usually take M out on our porch if it's nice out to read. She likes being out there and it's a nice change from reading and doing things indoors. I also like to walk around with her and point out what we see. I try to be descriptive by naming things by color and amount. Like 'Look at the the red truck.' It's never too early to start this.

Here is the best part of the day. I nursed in the park! Uncovered and in all it's glory. I loved it. It felt so freeing. M loved it. Well who knows, but it seemed like it. Granted I'll be a little more discreet in a restaurant, but it was an awesome first step. I want to share a picture, because I love it and I'm proud. It was so natural and so right. I am breastfeeding hear me roar!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Homemade Splash Mat

I wanted to try this really cute idea for a splash mat for M. It seemed so simple and everything it required I had on had. So when we got home today I got everything rounded up and started in. Luckily M was napping for all of this including dishes and cleaning. Go M!

You'll need:

Duct Tape
Ziploc Bag
Items like teether, toys, pom poms, etc.

First I put all the items in the Ziploc bag. Next add the water. I decided to add a little red food coloring to the water. You don't want too much water or the objects won't float around when you hit the bag. Let all the air out which may leak out some of the water. Then seal the bag and add the duct tape for extra coverage. I would have liked to have had some glitter or pom poms to add the the splash mat. Since it was so easy to do I'll probably make another one later. If M likes it half as much as the cat does then we're in luck. Here is the finished product!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Things We Love

I thought I'd make a post about some of the books and music that M and I love. Most of the time we listen to a mix I made of music from different genres. It has anything from Cash to Marley to Bocelli. I'm not in to songs that are too kiddish. Those songs we sing, but CDs not so much.

This is For The Kids which is put out by VH1 Save The Music. Love. Love. Love. There are also two other CDs and they are just as great. These are various artist collection. Many of them artists that you know or might know. M loves it. So there is one plus. Another major plus is that I actually enjoy them too.

This is one of the many amazing CDs from the Putumayo Presents series. Really there are so many amazing CDs to chose from. We have World Playground, African Playground, Memphis Blues, Dreamland, and many more. I can't stop collecting them! One thing that is really important to me is that M is exposed to other cultures other than her own.These CDs are a great way to do that. I actually had these before M even came along. My excuse was that I wanted them for work. Really I would listen to them all the time in my car.

Mama's Milk is a great book for the breastfed child. For me the appeal in this book is mainly for when M is older. I want her to see how normal and natural breastfeeding is in a society that doesn't view it as so. This book goes over animal mothers nursing their babies. The pictures are beautiful. The words are beautiful. Definitely a wonderful read.

Even if you don't carry your baby this is such an amazing book to have in your child's library. For me the draw was so that M could see all the ways people around the world carry their babies just like I carry her. It really goes beyond that though. This book is a wonderful look at the life of people all around the world. I cannot wait till school starts back up so I can read this to my class.

This book has to be my favorite. Really anything by Todd Parr is great. We have several of his books already, but I definitely want them all. It's Okay to Be Different is probably my favorite. We also have The Peace Book and The I Love You Book. Each of his books has the kind of message I want M to hear.

Happy Reading! I hope you enjoy these as much as we do!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Too Much Milk

You don't hear much about women who have too much milk. Most women wouldn't even see how it could be a problem. My heart goes out to women dealing with low supply. I can't imagine how frustrating that would be. On the flip side over supply sucks too. To date the largest amount I've pumped in one session is 18oz. W.T.F. I've had clogged ducts, milk blisters, major leakage, and daily engorgement. My freezer is packed. I only use pumped milk at night and it goes out of date before I can get to it. So most of the time I end up dumping perfectly good milk down the drain. Which I hate when I'd rather be donating. All of this while having her on the breast.

What sucks the most is how it affects M. My letdown is too much for her. She gags and spits up and later vomits. After doing some research I've found that this is common with women who have over supply. She also clamps down on my nipple which I've read is her way of slowing down that flow. Needless to say, it hurts.

To help with these issues we are going to work on the football hold. This is suppose to slow down the flow of the milk making it easier for baby to handle. We've been nursing lying down this past week just to switch it up. Lying down also makes the flow easier to take. So we will continue with that at home.

These things won't help my supply, but hopefully they help M. Breastfeeding isn't always a walk in the park. Whether you have too little or too much there are challenges. Try not to get discouraged. There are answers if you look for them. Nursing M is the most amazing thing. It's a gift I love to give her. Even if it sucks sometimes for me.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Boobs Are For Babies

Lately I've been working on my nursing in public skills. At first I was pumping and bringing along bottles when we went out in public. Then I got pissed at myself for catering to the needs of people who I don't agree with. Why should I care if I offend you when you have no reason to be offended? To me boobs are for babies. You wouldn't get offended if some girl trotted in with a barely there tank top on. So why are you offended when you can see the back of my babies head in front of my breast?

So I bought a cover. Well first I bought this little strap that clips to any blanket to become a cover. It was cheap so I figured why not. I tried and tried at home to get that piece of crap to work, but it ended in me throwing it across the room and crying. Guess my hormones were still up? My next attempt was a cover from Target that I had high hopes for. It had a wire in the front so it would stick out and allow me to still see M. Well so it claimed. Not so much. She would thrash and cry and break latch. That's about all that was good for. I actually did nurse in public a couple times with it and ended up in the bathroom each time. Sitting on the public toilet with my pants up with people knocking to get in. Lovely.

Still I refused to pump and bottle. So this week has been a turning point. No more bottles. No more covers. Nursing shirts seem to be impossible to find. They are either a fortune or poorly reviewed. So it is what it is and I'm nursing in public. If you don't like it don't look. If it offends you then I feel sorry for you. I feel sorry that you have been so mislead by society that you feel you should be offended.

It's my right to nurse in public. I feel it's my daughter's right to eat without being covered by a sheet where she is snorting for air. It's her right to not have to eat in a bathroom. It's her right to have what she wants which is a boob not a bottle! So join me in burning your covers!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Mei Tai Lovin'

Several days ago I got my first Mei Tai in the mail. Let me just say that it won't be the last. I thought I'd start off by saying a little history about the Mei Tai. Despite what it looks like the pronunciation of Mei Tai is May-Tie. Mei being to carry on the shoulders and Tai being belt or band. I've also read of it's meaning being many ties. This type of carrier goes back hundreds of years and dates back to Asia.

For me personally I am not a huge fan of buckled carriers. To me they are modern and bulky. Just not what I like, but not a bad choice if it is what suits your family best. They definitely have a lot of great qualities. Baby wearing has been the most amazing bonding experience for me. I love to have her close as I go about the day. The reason I like the more traditional "old school" carriers like the Mei Tai and the ring sling is the kind of back to basic feeling I get. To me it feels natural. I admire how these women throughout history in other cultures raise their babies. I really feel like that is what draws me to this type of baby wearing. One thing I would love for M is for her to love and admire these cultures as well.

This particular carrier is from http://www.meitaibaby.com/shop.html I decided to go with build your own so I could get something specific to my taste and style. That way it would go with a lot of my clothes. It took about two weeks to come in the mail which is the ship time the seller expects. I've had custom items take a month or more so I was very pleased with the ship time. Even though the seller sent a booklet with different ways to tie the carrier I still went on YouTube to watch some videos. So I'll leave you with some really informative Mei Tai clips! Happy baby wearing!

http://youtu.be/zfck0-x7Z3E for back carry
http://youtu.be/gG_I4MV_QHU for front carry 3+months
http://youtu.be/yXxcj0bYdL8 for front carry newborn

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Fluffy Mail!

There's nothing like new diapers! It's odd how cloth diapering can become such a wonderful addiction. Who would of thought that I'd be counting down the days until diapers would come to my doorstep. We started off with twelve Bumgenius One Size diapers to test the waters of the cloth diaper world. Since we've tried them and fallen in love (well I have) we decided to order twelve more. Twenty four diapers are the recommended amount for newborns. I was so glad to get these in because washing diapers every day was getting old.

We've gotten a pretty good system down for diapering in the past few weeks. There is a trash can with a lid and foot peddle next to her changing table for the diapers. After I take off the soiled diaper I take out the insert and toss it in the pail. We use a reusable pail liner from planet wise. http://planetwiseinc.com/
Now that we have twenty four diapers I can start washing every other day. As for wipes I still use disposables and put them in our bathroom trash. You would think being out and about would be tricky, but really it's not bad. I keep a wet bag also by planet wise in her diaper bag. When she has a dirty diaper I put it in the bag and separate it later at home.

Washing is also pretty simple. Prewash cold and then a regular cycle on hot with a small amount of detergent. Once that cycle is done do one more rinse. I've been doing the rinse on hot as well. The colored "shell" part of the diaper has to hang dry, but they dry quickly and are ready in no time. I through mine over my shower. Your inserts tumble dry which for my dryer takes about thirty minutes.

Something new I'm trying today is sunning the diapers. I've read multiple articles that say setting your diapers out in the sun will take out the stains. I'll post back on whether or not this works. As you can see I don't have a very ideal spot for sun. Judging by this picture it looks like they're all pretty much in the shade. Damn.

This post wouldn't be complete without cute pictures of M in her cloth diapers! You can also see her new love the seahorse.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Finding the humor

In my whole five weeks of motherhood I have realized that sometimes you just have to laugh. Like when it's four in the morning and poop comes flying out not only hitting the third diaper in the past five minutes, but the stuffed animals and chair as well. Maybe it's when what used to take a matter of minutes is now one of the hardest parts of the day. Like checking the mail or finding the time to pee. I've had The Dilemma for six weeks now. Netflix might like that back.

This was my week of exercise which has yet to start. It's only Wednesday so that's not too bad, right? Monday was my first attempt at walking. I somehow managed to make it to the Civic Center in the pouring rain with M. No easy task. Why do strollers suck so bad? Getting that massive heap in my trunk was ridiculous. Then M's car seat and diaper bag which together weigh about five tons. We get there to meet my sister and her three month old only to learn that our strollers can't be on their track. They have one that my sister can use, but I didn't have her sling. Damn. On top of that they had just re varnished the basketball court and the whole place reeked. Not so good for babies. So Monday was out and after that all I really wanted was a stiff drink. Of course that didn't happen. At least I got to watch The Bachelor Pad that night.

We made the date to try walking again today which turned in to eating at a local Mexican restaurant that ended in fried ice cream. After that we both felt too sick and decided to try again tomorrow. Maybe someday I will lose the last twenty pounds. Maybe. With my new wisdom all I can do is laugh.