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Entries in natali morris (121)

Wednesday
Aug032011

My Breastfeeding Report Card

 

When I was pregnant, I read The Girlfriend's Guide To Pregnancy. The author says something really odd about nursing. She said it "feels good." As in a sexual kind of feel good.

I don't mean to challenge what another woman feels but, What!?

I just finished nursing Baby Mo to his first birthday. In my experience, nursing doesn't feel bad but it certainly never felt good...not like that! I have so many questions for a woman who would say something like that.

August is World Breastfeeding Awareness Month: a time to discuss, promote, and support nursing mommies. I figured I would take this time to share my experience nursing my first baby to my goal of 1 year.

Weaning was difficult for both Baby Mo and myself. Around 11 months, he started to show disinterest in nursing at times, and then seemed like he wanted to nurse at other times. My husband had a hard time understanding why it was so difficult. To him, weaning meant cold turkey. Just cut him off. Why is that so hard?

My milk didn't dry up immediately and Baby Mo seemed confused by the change in routine so we weaned down to 2 feedings per day at 11 months. We went to 1 per day at 11 1/2 months and by his first birthday, he was on grass-fed cow's milk. Our last nursing session was on his 1st birthday. I made it!

I can't exactly say that I miss it. It feels SO liberating that my body is my own again after almost 2 years. Plus, he sits with me while he drinks his bottle of milk so we still have those quiet moments together. I cherish the nursing time we had but I was ready for us both to graduate.

As with any graduation, it is normal to look at your report card. I did have to supplement with formula. I tried to keep track of how often and I would say he averaged about 1 bottle per week when I was away or behind in pumping, starting at 3 months old. My husband estimates that he was 98 percent breastfed but I would estimate it is closer to 93 percent - not to put too fine a point on it.

Sure I wish I wouldn't have had to use formula but I do know that I did the best I can. And 93 percent is still an A! That isn't to say that mommies that don't nurse get an F. On the contrary! We are all doing the best we can! But seeing as it is World Breastfeeding Awareness Month, I thought that I would go ahead and congratulate myself a little. I deserve it! I persevered!

I won't break my own arm patting myself on the back. A lot of women don't nurse and are amazing mothers and a lot of women nurse beyond 1 year. And I shutter to think of nursing multiples for that long! This post is to salute those of you who are fighting the good mammary fight - pumping, hooter hiding, and lactating! Pour a little out in honor of the milkboob, ladies!

Friday
Jul292011

Win It! BABYBJÖRN Gift Pack

 

We are not giving away a BABYBJÖRN this week but we are giving away something from the company that makes the popular baby holder: It is a BABYBJÖRN kitchen gift pack!

In honor of the launch of the upcoming BABYBJÖRN High Chair, which I REALLY want, the company has agreed to give away a branded gift pack that includes a BABYBJÖRN Plate and Spoon, BABYBJÖRN Cup, BABYBJÖRN Eat and Play Smock, and a BABYBJÖRN Soft Bib.

In my attempt to rid our lives of plastic, I have limited my use of the plate, spoon, and cups but I use them on the go and I do not wash them in the dishwasher. They are all BPA-free. The bib is my favorite from this gift pack because it has a lip that catches the debris of a messy eater, which Baby Mo definitely is! 

If you would like to win this, here is how:

  • Like us on Facebook
  • Post a comment in the comments section of this post (not on Facebook) about your messy or not-so-messy eater. 
  • NOTE: you must leave your email when you comment. It will be kept private and not shared with anyone. We need it to alert the winner. Entries without emails will be disqualified.

Deadline to enter is 11:59 p.m. EDT, Thursday, August 11. Rules and regulations found here.

Friday
Jul292011

MommyBeta Podcast Episode 11: Boobie Dolls

Click here to download!

This week we discuss surviving our first first birthday parties, using "mama cloth," and that annoyingly controversial breast milk doll

We also give some tips for prepping your toddler to be in a wedding, and traveling with a baby

And finally, we discuss supporting nursing mommies and Natali's little victory of breastfeeding for 1 year. Jennifer mentions an article that discusses the negative perception of breast feeding mommies.Here it is and we think it is total crap.

Want to subscribe to our podcast in iTunes? Do so here!

Wednesday
Jul272011

Mama Cloth. Yes, I Went There. 

I realize that this post may destroy any amount of sex appeal I once had on the Internet but for the sake of posterity, I am about to "go there." 

I used to have a reputation as someone who was sexy and knowledgeable about technology. I still do some of that but I am also a mommy blogger. As such, I am exposed to things that are less desireably spoken of like cloth diapers and mama cloth. That's right, I said mama cloth. 

Mama cloth is the cloth diaper equivalent for a woman's monthly menstrual needs. If you are a man who once thought I had sex appeal, kindly close out of this post right now and perhaps I can preserve a little bit of that perception. 

So ladies, reusable period pads. I am just crazy enough to try them and I did!

Charlie Banana, the brand of cloth diapers I use the most, launched a line of mama cloth products called Feminie Secrets. Jennifer emailed us MommyBetas a link to these and expressed disgust with the idea, knowing that the hippy Natali and Nathalee would probably be crazy enough to give it a go. So I took the challenge. I wrote to my friend who represents Charlie Banana and inquired about samples. 

Allow me to explain why I would do something like this. I can afford $10 per month for a box of Tampax and I have never suffered from any adverse affects from the use of tampons. But as a mother, I use cloth diapers because I care about the environment and I care about limiting synthetic products in our lives. I also care about teaching my son to reject modern conveniences when there is a chance to make responsible choices. 

Based on those priorities, I figured that a little more bodily fluid in my cloth wash cycles couldn't really hurt. Besides, the average woman only bleeds 2 tablespoons per cycle. How bad could it be to wash that much out per month? 

My mama cloth arrived last week and the next day, so did Aunt Flo. Tee hee hee. I said Aunt Flo. Am I in the 7th grade? 

These are really not that bad! They fold up in the size of a small coin purse. To wear, you snap them around your panties. When you leave the house, you carry a small cloth purse to dispose of previously worn pads. When you are ready to wash, you throw the entire bag in the rinse cycle, rinse, and then do a wash cycle after separating the pads from the bag. I never had to scrub my own menstruation off of the pads. 

Are these things bulky? Yeah. I'll be straight with you. They are. And there is no adhesive to keep them in place so if I had a marathon to run (as if!) I wouldn't use them. The lack of adhesive means they move around a little and that can feel odd. 

I do like the idea of saving money though. It annoys me to spend $10 per month on a feminine products that I am not thrilled to be using anyway. The Charlie Banana mama cloth cost about $18 for a pack of 3 so if you were to start using these, you'd have to drop some bucks initially but they'd pay themselves off quickly. 

So will I stick with these? I think I will for the foreseeable future. I have pretty manageable periods and I don't run marathons so they don't cramp my style all that much. Would I use them 100 percent of the time? Probably not. If I do want to go to the gym during Aunt Flo (tee hee hee), I will probably use a tampon. But I like the idea of saving cash, the environment, and limiting my exposure to synthetic cotton, especially in such an intimate area!

My mom thought I was crazy when I told her about these and my husband has pretty much ignored this experiment. Which is just as well. Maybe to him I can preserve some of that sex appeal after all. 

Tuesday
Jul192011

Wet T-Shirt Night... And Not The Good Kind

"Diaper sprayer... That is a first," said the Roto-Rooter man at 10:30 p.m.

I had tried to install it myself and it went horribly awry. I ended up doused in toilet water - and I mean doused. We're talking wet T-shirt contest style here.

Oh and in tears. I was doused in toilet water and in tears. Here's the story that is only funny in hindsight.

After a nice dinner with Clayton, I decided to get ahead on chores in preparation for my mom's visit this weekend. On my list: laundry, finish painting the changing table and shelves, wrap Baby Mo's birthday gift, and if I got ahead of the game, install that diaper sprayer. 

I hadn't used the diaper sprayer that was sent to me for my cloth diaper challenge because it didn't fit our New York City apartment's toilet. Since moving into the new house, I had been eager to install it in Baby Mo's bathroom.

For those of you that don't know, this is a diaper sprayer. You use it to spray the poop off of your diapers before you throw them out or wash them. You are supposed to dispose of all baby poop before disposing of diapers or washing reusables. Throwing poop in the landfill is a health hazard. Most people don't do that but they should. Anyway, I digress.

I followed the instructions on the package but when I turned the water valve back on, the toilet started showering me in the face like a polite reminder.

This is not correct. Please go get help.

I ignored the reminder. The package said to tighten the valves if there was leaking. I kept tightening but the spray got worse. So bad in fact that it soaked up three towels, and eventually went off like a geyser all over me.

PANIC!

Now I decide I must get Clayton, who is recovering from leg surgery yesterday and knows nothing about plumbing.

"Honey," I said faux-calmly, walking down the stairs dripping wet with wrench in my hand, "I need you. Like right now. Immediately. It's urgent."

He limped up the stairs and stopped in his tracks at the sight of our leaking toilet and his insane drenched wife.

"Why did you just go and do this? I can't fix this. Get a plumber here now!"

Ladies, you know the fantasy. If I can just do this by myself he will be so impressed with me and I will be liberated from having to ask him to do handy things like this for me. Key word here: fantasy.

Roto-Rooter, God bless that company, showed up in about 15 minutes. The nice man did not even really know what a diaper sprayer was until he got upstairs. He noticed that the package was missing a washer and that was why the sprayer was leaking. He got one out of his truck and fixed it in about 10 minutes, all the while trying not to chuckle at me.

"Ah new home owners," he said, shaking his head while twisting my wrench under the toilet. He stopped to look at said wrench and said, "And these are somebody's dad's..."

It is true. The wrench was likely purchased from a hardware store in 1957 before Home Depot ever existed by my dear sweet father-in-law Don.

When I ran downstairs to recount the story with Clayton he was embarrassed.

"My good tools are still in storage!" he said defiantly.

I told the plumber that my husband was embarrassed about the tools and he said, "I wouldn't be embarrassed. It means that they're good tools."

After a few minutes the sprayer was successfully installed and I gotta say, it is kind of neat! I wonder about its potential as a bidet?

"So I don't even know what to call this job," said the plumber when he was done. "We charge $52 for emergency response so I'm just going to charge you for that and chalk the rest up to experience."

So I stumped a plumber tonight. One for the books. Maybe even the baby book? I could put the receipt in Baby Mo's? I'll consider it while I shower off this toilet water.