Wife, Mummy, Nurse: November 2012

29 November 2012

Roadtrips and Breastfeeding {#BFBlogHop}

The holidays are here.  During which, many people travel near and far to see family and friends.  Charis was 4 weeks old when we first drove to see our family in Pennsylvania.  During which, I quickly learned to always keep a few things on hand to make traveling with a breastfed baby easier.

Baby carriers: The first few months Charis was alive, I used a Moby wrap, but once she hit 14-16 lbs., I switched over to the Boba.  It was easy because I was still able to be out while keeping my daughter close to me.  Some women have also breastfed while wearing their baby, but I was not able to come close to mastering that.

Disposable breast pads: Yes, I used cloth at home, but I was not wanting to worry myself about washing cloth breast pads.

A blanket: When Charis was a month old, we were still getting used to breastfeeding, so I would hold her close to me and hold her with a blanket.  I would pull the blanket up or go into another room if she was getting distracted.  Later, I did not need to have a blanket with me, but I was thankful to have it on the trip to PA.

A few other tips:

  • Stop and nurse when your baby starts crying.  
  • Plan for extra time.  Our usual five hour trip, took 6 1/2 hours.
  • Bring water and food.  Buying good, healthy food is harder to do when you're traveling and you still need plenty of calories.
  • Also beware of holiday weaning.  I can happen at anytime, not just during the holidays.
What tips do you have when traveling with a breastfed baby?
Link up at Sisters N Cloth.

28 November 2012

Ribbed Lace Bolero {Yarn Along}

I finished knitting my sister's hat, but now I need to sew in the ends and then block it around a plate so that I can make it a little more slouchy.  And I'm dragging my feet to do this.  Why?  This is my least favorite part when knitting a project.  Once I cast off, I would love to be finished, but that's not the case.

Now, I'm knitting the Ribbed Lace Bolero.  I'm only on the ribbing. Though I must admit to being confused by this:
row 2: p1 (p1, p1 into first yo, p1 into the back of the second yo, p1) repeat lace pattern until 1 stitch left, p1
Any help would be appreciated.  Though, I realize I'm probably over thinking.

I finished listening to Prisoner of Birth and highly recommend it, it's a modern day version of The Count of Monte Cristo.  Now, I want to reread The Count of Monte Cristo.

What are you reading or knitting?
Join me over at Ginny's Yarn Along.

Baby Girl {Green Christmas Gift Giveaway Hop}

Welcome to the Green Christmas Giveaway Hop, hosted by Happy Mothering, Going Green with Grizls and The Reynolds Mom. 50+ members of the Green Moms Network have come together to offer you tons of chances to win green-themed Christmas gifts! There’s sure to be something for everyone on your list. We hope you’ll discover some great new brands to add to your Christmas list too! Below my entry form, you'll see the other giveaways to enter as well as information about entering to win the Grand Prize!

When I first found out I was pregnant, I secretly hoped for a girl.  Why?  Because girls are so much easier to dress than boys.  I can put her in any color, pink, purple, yellow, blue, green, etc.  So, you can imagine my reaction when BumGenius came out with their new prints last year.

I wanted to get my hands on the Lovelace diaper, which I did, but then won another diaper at the Monday night #clothdiapers Twitter chat.  I chose to get Lovelace again, but to be honest, it's been sitting in the closet in it's original packaging for the last two months because I tell myself, "Why did I get another Lovelace print?  I already have it."  I decided to add it to the giveaway package for the Green Christmas Giveaway Hop. It's a small way of passing it forward.  God has blessed us in so many ways, and I realize I do not need two diapers in the same print. a Rafflecopter giveaway Our hosts are featuring 5 fabulous grand prize packages from these green and natural brands: For Your Bug-a-Boo, Blue Manatee Boxes, Bulk Herb Store, Snug Bug Diapers, Nosefrida, My Pretty Playhouse, Wonder Forge, Kelly Kits, Kerrific Online, LibreTea, Grounds for Change, Zulka Sugar, Justin's Nut Butters, Better Life, ReuseIt, Strawesome, generationMe, Soybu, Purely Gorgeous, A Mothers Design, Dr. Bronner's and Xmittens!. Click here to enter the grand prize.

26 November 2012

Pretty Mommies Skin Care {Giveaway}

Pretty Mommies Safe Skincare for Pregnant and Nursing Moms
Did you know it's important to use safe skincare while you're pregnant and breastfeeding?
The Blogging Mamas Network and Pretty Mommies have come together to bring you important information about safe skincare during these special times AND to offer you a chance to win 1 of 4 sets of Pretty Mommies Skincare!
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Pretty Mommies is a 3 step skin care line - including a cleanser, a skin brightener, and a sunscreen. Although it's specifically formulated to deal with the hormonal imbalances of pregnancy and nursing, EVERYONE can benefit from it's natural ingredients.
To learn even more about each of the 3 products, read the detailed Pretty Mommies Review on According to Jenny.
The Pretty Mommies Skincare Line is available on the Pretty Mommies Website and through selected Physicians Offices. The set retails for $158 or each product can be purchased separately.
Pretty Mommies has recently partnered up with the BabyLove Project - a subscription sampling service that gives new and expecting mothers access to healthy beauty and skincare products in an innovative way. They're currently surveying new and expectant moms, so if that's you - they would love your feedback on this survey!
Pretty Mommies Safe Skincare for Pregnant and Nursing Moms


Pretty Mommies Safe Skincare for Pregnant and Nursing Moms Giveaway
This giveaway is open to US/CAN residents, 18+ only. Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on December 10th.
To enter, please use the Rafflecopter Form below.
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Disclosure: Special thanks to Hosts According to Jenny, So Easy Being Green, An Ordinary Housewife, and other Pretty Mommy Bloggers! Event bloggers are not responsible for Sponsor Prize Shipment.

21 November 2012

Mod Cables Slouchy Hat {Yarn Along}

WARNING: If you are a family member, stop reading this blog post or you MAY find out what you'll be getting for Christmas from me.  Thanks.  

I finishes listening to The Silver Chair on Monday. Even though I have read The Silver Chair before, there were a few allusions I missed to the Bible.  Both come from Chapter 2. 

The first is when Jill was talking with Aslan and he told her to drink from the stream, but she would not drink.  Aslan then told her she would die.  Jill told Aslan she will go off in search of other water.  Aslan stated, "There is no other stream," said the Lion.  This passage reminded me of John 4:13-14: 
Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
The was allusion I missed was when Jill was talking to Aslan and she asked how could Aslan have called her.
 "I was wondering - I mean - could there be some mistake? Because nobody called me and Scrubb, you know. It was we who asked to come here. Scrubb said we were to call to - to Somebody - it was a name I wouldn't know - and perhaps the Somebody would let us in. And we did, and then we found the door open.’
 "You would not have called to me unless I had been calling to you," said the Lion.
This reminds me of salvation.  God called those he would save since the foundations of the world, and it's only because of Him that we call on His name.

I borrowed an audio version of Prisoner of Birth by Jeffrey Archer, but have not yet started listening to it.  I'll start on the way to Pennsylvania tonight, when Drew and I leave.  I have read one other book by Archer {Sons of Fortune} and enjoyed it very much, so I'm hoping to enjoy this one as well.

I am still knitting Christmas gifts.  So, if you're a family member, do not look or read any further.  I'm knitting the Mod Cables Slouchy Hat, designed by Life in Cleveland. This hat will be given to my sister; she requested a hat, and I chose this one because she lives in Ohio, near Cleveland. I'm knitting it with Paton's Classic Wool, but I don't think Saundy will mind getting a hat she has to handwash. I'll just have to give her very clear instructions on how to care for it.

I'm currently at Starbucks waiting for Drew to get off work, so we can drive to PA.  We'll probably get in around 2 AM.  I'm hoping and praying our trip out is not like last year's trip.  {Read Number 2 for a quick reminder.}  FYI, I have found I like a caramel brulee latte best with 1 1/2-2 pumps, instead of all three.  Usually, I get a plain latte, so I'm not used to all the sugar.

What are you knitting or reading?
Join my over at Ginny's Yarn Along.

15 November 2012

Holiday Weaning {#BFBlogHop}

With Thanksgiving and Christmas fast approaching, nursing mothers need to watch out for Holiday weaning and how to avoid it.  Holiday weaning occurs when babies decrease their breastfeeding or wean altogether due to the business and distraction of the holidays.  During the holidays, mothers are usually busier preparing for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Eve.  Because of this babies are not fed as often, which causes a decrease in breast milk supply.  Remember that breastfeeding is a supply and demand issue.  So, if you are not nursing as often, your supply will decrease.  Holiday weaning does not just happen around Christmas, it can happen at any time.

Another reason Holiday weaning may occur is because babies are surrounded by people they don't know, and they won't settle down.  The first Thanksgiving after Charis' birth was horrible.  We arrived in PA around 1 AM and went to Drew's extended family's Thanksgiving festivities.  Charis cried for THREE hours straight; I ended up crying in the bathroom, nothing I tried worked.  I tried breastfeeding her, held her, bounced her up and down, prayed with her, and sang with her, and repeated this over and over again.  What eventually worked was asking Aunt Kim if I could give Charis a bath.  Charis LOVES baths and it calmed her down so that she nursed and then napped for 1 1/2 hours.

A few tips to avoid Holiday weaning due to the increased business:

  • If need be, excuse yourself from the room to nurse.  You may not have to do this, but if your baby is overstimulated by everything going on, find a quiet place and nurse your baby.
  • Breastfeed before going out in the comfort of your home.
  • Take shorter shopping trips.
  • Buy gifts online. This will allow you to stay home.
  • If family members offer to feed the baby a bottle, politely decline and let them know you're breastfeeding.
What tips do you have on continuing to breastfeed through the holidays?
Link up at Sister's N Cloth for the #BFBlogHop.

14 November 2012

Christmas Knitting and a Dilemma {Yarn Along}

Yesterday, one my my friends reminded me that Christmas is 6 weeks away; thanks for the reminder Lisa.

I still need to seven gifts, some of them I'm halfway there, but others I haven't even started.  The last gift I started is going to be for one of the men in my life, but I'm not going to say which one.  They might be reading this blog.  It's going VERY quickly. What is shown, I spent less than 10 minutes on, but that's what happens when a project calls for bulky yarn.  The downside is, the yarn I picked has 75% acrylic/25% wool.  Why did I pick it?  Some people don't like handwashing, and I'm afraid that will be the case with the recipient, so I'll suffer as I knit it.

I need help on deciding on a yarn color.  A friend of mine is pregnant, and our church is having a baby shower for her December 8th.  She's planning on using cloth diapers, loves knitting and wool, so I figured, I would knit her baby some newborn wool longies. But, she doesn't know the sex of her baby, so I want to pick a gender neutral color. I'd be perfectly fine putting both of these colors below on a girl and probably a boy, but for those who have boys would you prefer one over the other.

I checked out The Silver Chair CDs from the library yesterday, which I'll be listening to today.  On Wednesdays, I'm usually in the car over two hours.  I drive down to VA, which takes about 50 minutes, and then drive to prayer meeting in MD, which takes about 1 hour 10 minutes.  I get tired of listening to WTOP.

What are you knitting or reading?  
Join me over at Ginny's Yarn Along.

13 November 2012

Thanksgiving {Gratituesday}

Another week has passed where God has been good.  I don't deserve his riches, but I'm thankful for what He has done, even in the little everyday things.

November 6: I am actually thankful for the election pamphlets that we were given, not because they made me more educated, but because they were a very good distraction to my daughter while waiting in line to vote. Now, these will go in the recycle bin.

The literature that was recycled.
Charis kept saying, "4. 6. 5. F. E. M. S."
She's recognizing a lot of numbers and letters.

LOVE this picture of Drew and Charis
as we left our polling place.

Sitting on leaves, enjoying the sunshine.

I hope to make copies of this picture
and send it to Grandad
in Northern Ireland.

November 7: I am thankful that I have been getting more work accomplished on my daughter's longies.

November 8: I'm thankful for the walk my daughter and I were able to take today to the library, park, and post office.

Not the clearest picture, but
I love the joy and enthusiasm
written on Charis's face.
If my granny was still alive, I'd be hearing that my
daughter NEEDS to keep her hair out
of her face.

Those are longies I made for her last winter.
November 9: Thankful to finally pull out the stove and be able to clean the floor underneath it. Let's just say that was gross.

November 10: I thought I posted one for yesterday, but it didn't post. I was thankful Drew ate the spaghetti squash I made and liked it.

November 11: Thankful my daughter and I were able to make banana bread tonight.

November 12: Thankful that my husband is home safe and that God has provided him with his job.

What are you thankful for?
Link up at Heavenly Homemakers Gratituesday.

08 November 2012

Pumping and Storing Breastmilk {#BFBlogHop}

I went back to work PRN when my daughter was 6 weeks 3 days old.  Needless to say, it was hard.  I wanted to avoid giving Charis formula.  I bought a manual pump to try and get all the liquid gold I could and save it up in the freezer.  Looking back, the biggest thing I would have done differently would be to buy a double electric breast pump, preferably a Hygeia breast pump.  On my first day back, I had about 30-40 ounces of breast milk in the freezer; Charis drank over 20 ounces.  I was only able to pump 8-10 ounces while at work, because I could get off the floor once.  Before leaving the floor, I always washed my hands and would wash them again when arriving in the employee pumping room on Labor and Delivery.

I used Lansinoh freezer bags and labeled them with how much I pump and on what date the milk was pumped.  I immediately put the bags in the freezer when I returned home.  I asked Many FB respondents stated to use bags and lay them down for easier storage and to help with space.

La Leche League International's Storage Guidelines are:
Preferably, human milk should be refrigerated or chilled right after it is expressed. Acceptable guidelines for storing human milk are as follows. Store milk:
  • at room temperature (66-78°F, 19-26°C) for 4 hours (ideal), up to 6 hours (acceptable) (Some sources use 8 hours)
  • in a refrigerator (<39°F, <4°C) for 72 hours (ideal), up to 8 days (acceptable if collected in a very clean, careful way)
  • in a freezer (-0.4 to -4°F, -18 to -20°C) for 6 months (ideal) up to 12 months (acceptable)
Since I did not have to work full time, last night on my Facebook page I asked, "Do any of you have any tips for pumping and storing breastmilk?"  Most of those who responded recommended laying breast milk storage bags down for easier storage, helping preserve space, and easier thawing.  Another stated,
I use the Milkies milk catcher. So, every time I let down when I nurse, I get 1-2 oz of milk, on the non-nursing side, that is caught. As soon as i get a bottles worth, it goes in a storage bag in the freezer. So, I don't have to pump! I have tons of milk in the freezer just from collecting milk all day!

Did you pump breastmilk?  If so, what tips do you recommend? 
Join us at Sisters 'N Cloth for this weeks #BFBlogHop.
Next week's topic is on "Breastfeeding and Holiday Challenges".

07 November 2012

Kanoko Pants {Yarn Along}

Charis's Kanoko pants have been on the backburner the last few weeks due to knitting Christmas gifts, but yesterday, I picked them up and knit a gusset, did a kitchener stitch, and am knitting one of the legs.  Unfortunately, I can't show pictures of those knitting projects due to family reading my blog.

Kanoko Pants
Yarn for Christmas knitting

I am not reading too much these days due to knitting during free time, instead of reading.  I am reading Colossians for my own devotions.

I'm looking for tips on teaching someone to knit.  One of my friends asked if I could teach her, and I've NEVER taught anyone to knit, so I don't know where to start.  My mum taught me how to cast on, knit, and purl, everything else I learned from KnittingHelp.com.  Do any of you have tips on where to start?  Please help.  I'm going to her house on Friday.

What are you knitting or reading?
Join me over at Ginny's Yarn Along.

06 November 2012

Thanksgiving {Gratituesday}

Everyday on my Facebook page, I've been writing what I'm thankful for.  Why do I do this?  Because it's good to daily give thanks for the good things God has given me, even if it's small.

November 1: I'm thankful for my vacuum cleaner. Yes, I was vacuuming about 30 minutes ago. 

November 2: I'm thankful my daughter still takes naps.

November 3: I'm thankful for bridal showers and friends who were recently married.

November 4: Thankful I have a daughter who wakes me up an hour earlier due to falling back an hour. I'm especially mindful of this because there are many people who want children, but aren't able to.

November 5: Thankful for the Trader Joe's cashier handing my daughter stickers. Yes, it's the simple things in life that I'm thankful for as well. 

What are you thankful for?
Join us for Gratituesday at Heavenly Homemakers.

01 November 2012

Sleeping Through the Night with Breastfed Babies {#BFBlogHop}

After Charis was born, the first few weeks I felt like I was up 24/7.  Breastfeeding morning, noon, and night. I thought to myself, "I'm never going to get any sleep again."  Friends would tell me, I would once again sleep, but I didn't believe them. The first time Charis slept 3-4 hours at night, I woke up feeling like a brand new person.  It wasn't until recently that Charis slept 12+ hours on a regular basis.  I now believe my friends that told me, that this was a season, not my whole life.  There were some things that helped me feel rested:

  • Feeding Charis right before going to bed.  I noticed Charis would often not sleep a longer stretch when doing this.
  • Try to fill Charis during day.  When Charis started solid food, she would start playing and forget to nurse, so I tried to nurse who every three hours during the day, which helped ensure she would not wake up as much at night.
  • Cosleep.  I wouldn't have to get out of bed.  I lifted and unsnapped my shirt and fell asleep while Charis nursed.
  • Change her diaper before feeding.  If I waited until afterwards, Charis would wake up screaming, and I'd have to spend time with a screaming, crying baby trying to put her to sleep again.
Do you have any suggestions for having breastfed babies sleep through the night?
Join us for this week's #BFBlogHop at Sisters 'N Cloth
Next week's topic is "Pumping and Storing Breastmilk".

Fuzzibunz One Size Elite Diaper {#ThankfulforFluff}

Happy November!!  This is one of my favorite months.  Why?  Because of Thanksgiving and being able to spend time with family and friends.  It's good to be reminded of the many good things God has given me, none of which I deserve.  I recently won two FuzziBunz One Size Elite Diaper-one in white and the other mint.  I have found the Fuzzibunz one size do not work as well for my daughter as other one size diapers.  So, I set them aside and will let the winner choose either the white or mint diaper.  Hope you have a good month and happy entering.

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