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Archive for June, 2009

My son is now 9 months old. I had contemplated switching to formula full time for a while now because of concerns of my milk supply. Between my son’s distractability and teething, he became very uninterested in nursing. Then to top things off every month my milk supply dips right before my period while I am PMSing. Then my family moved cross country from Maryland to Texas and I think the stress that I was experiencing caused my already low milk supply to start dipping. My son became very fussy at my breast and would suck hard, but I would not have any milk. After talking to my son’s pediatrician, she recommended that I start supplementing with formula. So I have done that (thankfully he’ll drink it now), but it is causing my milk supply to dip to a sever low. I don’t want to quit breastfeeding. I would like to breastfeed him until he is a year old. So I have decided to really try everything I know to get my milk supply up. Here is my plan:

  1. Nurse/ Pump every 1.5- 2 hours and every 3 hours at night
  2. Drink lots of water
  3. Take More Milk Plus Special Blend
  4. Take Goat Rue
  5. Drink Mother’s Milk Tea
  6. Eat a diet high in protein/ carbs
  7. Rest, Rest, Rest

I am hoping that the combination of these things will help to bring my milk supply up. I will let you know my plan was successful or not.

References:

http://breastfeeding.hypermart.net/supply.html

http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/low-supply.html

http://www.llli.org/FAQ/increase.html

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I am going to review two sound machines that I have purchased. My son is a very light sleeper and we use to live in a condo. The white noise machine has really helped him to sleep better by drowning our all the background noise. If you have more than one kid, than I highly recommend buying one to keep the noise level down while your little one is sleeping and your older child is playing.

Marpac Sound Screen & SleepMate 980

We are currently using this sound machine for my son. It has two settings: soft and loud. The loud setting is not quite as loud as a box fan, but it is loud enough to mask most of the sounds in our home or condo. The benefit of this sound machine is that it is portable. I can through this in my suitcase or diaper bag if I am not going to be home for his naps or on vacation. The familiar hum of this sound machine has made his naps and sleep in other places by home really great. He has never slept better! We use it all the time and I plan on bying another one for my next child.
Where to buy: Amazon

cost: $49

Rating: 4.5 Good sound, portable, drowns out background noise

http://www.amazon.com/Marpac-White-Machine-Screen-Conditioner/dp/B000X1JO76/ref=pd_sbs_bt_7

Sweet Slumber by Graco

This is a neat sound machine. I bought it and used it for 2 weeks when our sound machine was getting fixed (I dropped it). This sound machine not only creates a clean white noise, but it has some additional features. It makes the sound of the womb and other nature sounds. It also has a blue nightlight built into it that you can turn off and on by pressing the top. The other neat feature is that you can plug your Ipod into this unit and play a play list from you Ipod. This sound machine has a lot more to offer and is a little cheaper than the Marpac sound machine. The only down fall to this sound machine is that the white noise is not as nice as the one on the Marpac. It is a little more staticy. My son slept fine with this sound machine too. So I believe it is really a matter of preference.

Where to buy: Target, Amazon

Cost $40

Rating: 4.5 ★ Many different sounds, portable, nightlight, and Ipod ready

http://www.amazon.com/Graco-Sweet-Slumber-Sound-Machine/dp/B001GQ2P78/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=baby-products&qid=1246042157&sr=8-1

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I thought that I would start to write about the baby items that I really love. I wish that someone would have reviewed or told me about some of the items before Cooper was born. So I thought I might be of assistance to you all and write about some must have and neat baby items that will make life easier. I will rate each item by giving it a star rating (out of 5 stars)


Travel Light Crib (Graco) ★★★★★

I love this mini pack ‘n play. It was great for my Cooper for the first 6 months of life. My little guy is now 9 months old and he is a big baby so he has unfortunately out grown his travel light crib. This pack ‘n play is made my Graco and is a lot smaller and easier to transport than an average size pack ‘n play. I needed a portable pack ‘n play that was easy for me to carry on my own, set up, and break down. This travel light crib was so simple that I could carry my son in one arm and the travel light crib in the other. If my son was not so long for his age (95% height), we would still be using this travel light crib. I used it when I would take him to my bible study, friends houses for play dates, or for dinner parties at other people’s homes. I also used this as a bassinet for him to sleep in when he was a new born. I am only sorry that he has out grown it, but I plan on using it again when ever baby #2 arrives!

Where to Buy: I bought my used on Craigslist for $30, but I have seen them retain from $70-120 bucks new depending on the print you choose. I have seen them for sale at Walmart, Target, and Babies R Us. So if you want a new one, check one of those places out!

Star Rating: I gave it 5 stars because it was easy to set up/ break down, light, and my son slept great in it. Works well as a bassinet and portable crib!

http://www.target.com/Graco-Travel-Lite-Bassinet-Marlowe/dp/B001GQ2P8C/sr=1-6/qid=1245871448/ref=sr_1_6/188-4980503-7258533?ie=UTF8&frombrowse=0&rh=k%3Atravel%20light%20crib&page=1

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My family just moved from Maryland to Texas. My son is now 9 months-old and we decide to make this move totally on our own. What I mean by that is, we packed the boxes, hulled it all into a truck (you pack, they pick it up), and drove across country, unpacked the truck ourselves, and painted our bedrooms in the new house. It was a huge under taking, but we had to move on a budget and this was the most affordable way for us to move.
Here are some suggestions on how to make a large scale move more manageable with a baby:

Pre-Move/ Packing Suggestions

1. Ask for help– get some friends and family to take your baby/ child to their house or play with them at your house so you can pack. This was about the only way I could get anything done!

2. Work around napping schedules- try to be as productive as you can while your baby is napping

3. Starting packing in advance– we started packing a month before we moved. As you know getting anything done fast with a small baby is near impossible. The sooner you start getting things in boxes, the less stressed you will be as time leads up to the big move day.

4. DVDs/ TV/ New Toys- I am not advocating sticking your kids in front of the TV non-stop, but the TV can help especially when you are in a bind for time. My son loves Baby Einstein DVDs and they kept him occupied while he was awake and I needed to by packing and boxing. I also borrowed some toys from friends that were new and that kept him interested for a while. The key is finding things that are noval and distracting so you can get things done.

5. Try to pack your baby’s room last- Keep pictures on the wall, things on the selves, and curtains up for as long as possible. Babies tend to sleep better and be less anxious when their sleeping environment is familiar and unchanged. We did not pack my son’s pictures, curtains, and room decorations until the day before the move. We did not take his crib down until the morning of the move. This really helped him to have less anxiety leading up to the move, as well as helped him to sleep better.

Traveling with Baby (in car/ plane)

6. Buy some new toys- get some new toys. They don’t have to be expensive. You can get some toys at consignment shops and garage sales for cheep. The novelty of new toys will keep you baby content and happy for a little while.

7. Keep snacks and drinks on hand- we had some Gerber rice cereal bites, Cheerios, and my pumped milk on hand. That way you don’t have to stop the car to give him some food to hold him over until you are at a good stopping point. I have an electric breast pump and I used that to express some milk to give to him in a bottle if he got fussy if we were not a good stopping point while we were driving. If you are flying, you are allowed to bring breast milk and formula through security in a bottle.

8. Portable DVD player/ DVDs- What would I have done without this? My husband got a portable DVD player as a gift right before we moved. My son loved watching his Baby Einstein DVDs while we were driving down the highway. When my son was in melt down mode, all we had to do was turn on the DVD player and he would instantly quiet. I will never go on a long drive without a portable DVD player again!

9. Head Rest/ Sun shades/ blankets- Buy an infant head rest and make sure you put up blankets and sun shades to help keep you child comfy for car naps and cool. We hung blankets from the windows to help darken his spot in the car, which helped him to nap a little better in the car.

10. Training Toilet- If you are at the stage when you are potty training your child, make sure you bring a training toilet along. You can just pull over anywhere and allow your son or daughter to go to the bathroom without having to hassle with finding a bathroom or the cleanliness of public restrooms.

11. Drive during naps and at night as much as you can- The easiest time to drive is while your child is sleeping. If you can time travel  during your child’s naps and nighttime sleep, it will be much easier to get where you’re going. We did a bulk of the drive from about 7pm until 1am for 2 days. That was 12 hours of driving while my son slept.

Post-Move

12. Don’t wash your child’s crib sheet- A friend gave me this piece of advise and it works. The scent on the crib sheet is familiar to them and when you get to their new room or they are sleeping in a pack ‘n play, put the unwashed crib sheet on. This should give them a familiar sent and help them to sleep better.

13. Give them familiar objects/ things- My son sleeps with a stuffed monkey and a sound machine on. So we made sure these things were not packed in boxes. We put them in the car so we could have them immediately when we got there. It helped him to have the familiar sounds and smells of home just like the crib sheet.

14. Paint the nursery the same color and use the old furniture- now would not be a good time to change your nursery theme, furniture, or color of the walls. We painted my son’s room exactly the same and hung the pictures that were hanging in his room like they were at our old house. This made the transition into his new room a lot smoother than I thought it would be.

15. Give them lots of cuddle time before bed and while they are awake- If you spend a lot of time with them reassuring them that you are not leaving than the transition to the new home will be easier. My son need more cuddle time and a little long before bedtime activities in order to go to sleep and go down for naps. I was happy to give him the extra time if that was what it would take to get him settled. The days that I tried to rush pre-sleep activities were the days he slept the worst. So give them the extra reassurance and TLC they need!

16. Play in their new room- Take time to do some play time activities in their new room even if you don’t usually play in your child’s bedroom. This will help them to get comfortable with where they will sleep and be less strange to them.

17. Don’t rush un-packing- Make sure to ease into your new home and give your litle one lots of attention. You can unpack slowly during his naps and nighttime sleep. While he is awake, make sure you give him the extra attention he needs.

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