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Tips for Breastfeeding and Returning to Work

Top Tips to make Breastfeeding and Returning to Work Easier

Going back to work following Maternity Leave is essential for most of us rather than a choice. There are so many things to think about and organise long before your first day back such as childcare and possible changes to your hours. Something that kept me awake at night, other than the baby was worrying about how I was going to carry on breastfeeding when I went back to work.

Do I have to stop Breastfeeding when I go back to work?

The answer is simply, NO. There’s no reason why you should stop feeding your baby but you may need to express milk for your baby to take whilst you’re at work, and you may need to express during your working day.

This is something that is asked time and again on Parenting Groups and Forums, and a lot of women use their return date as an ‘aim for’ date when thinking of weaning their baby from the breast.

This isn’t the case for everybody though. Some babies don’t take from a bottle or cup at all so feed before mum goes to work and then when they get home again. Some mothers also find that they aren’t able to express milk easily so it’s worth having a go a little while before you go back to work.

The European Commission recommends that Employers should provide Breastfeeding Mother’s with:

  • Access to a private room where women can breastfeed or express breast milk
  • Use of a secure, clean refrigerator for storing breast milk during working hours
  • Facilities for washing, sterilising and storing receptacles

What will I need to Express Breastmilk?

A Breast Pump – This could be a manual or electric pump but I find the most effective way to pump is with a Double Electric Pump.

Bottles/Cups – This is personal preference to your baby. Some will take breast milk from a bottle whilst others will take it from a sippy cup or other form of beaker.

Teats – If using a bottle, it may be that you might have to try out a few teats before finding the right one for your baby. I’ve been using slow-flow or newborn teats so that the milk comes out slower which mimics the rate at which your baby feeds from the breast.

Milk Storage Bags – Milk can be expressed and frozen which is great for building up a bit of a stash for when you’re away from your baby. This could also be useful if you were ill or need to catch up on some sleep when they can be fed by someone else.

A Cool Bag – For putting your expressed milk into. I pour all milk into one bottle and cap it, pop it into my cool bag and put it into the fridge. I prefer this since I don’t want colleagues to question it or touch it to be honest. This also keeps it nice and fresh on the commute home.

A Safe Place to Express or Breastfeed – This ideally needs to be a comfortable lockable room with a chair and access to the above. A toilet cubicle is most definitely not an option and if this is suggested I would seek further advice via the Health & Safety Guidelines for New and Expectant Mothers.

Accessible Clothing – This may seem like a no-brainer but the first time I wore a dress as I considered myself ‘baby free’ I had to get pretty much undressed to express. Clothes with buttons I find best.

Letting your Employer know you’re continuing to Breastfeed

If you’re planning to express breast milk or breastfeed (if baby is nearby) then you will need to notify your Manager so that they can put the necessary arrangements in place

Other things to consider when discussing this with your employer is that you have somewhere comfortable to sit with a plug socket within reach.

It’s always a good idea to keep the lines of communication open with your employer so that you both know each others expectations. I thought that I would need to express twice during the day which is what was agreed between us. Once in the morning and again in the afternoon, but I find that once a day suffices and leaves me comfortable to work and doesn’t eat into my working day too much.

If you work with hazardess substances your employer will need to make the necessary arrangements in place to ensure your safety for the duration of your breastfeeding journey.

When is the Best time to Express Breast Milk?

This is very individual to you. I thought that I would need to express at around 11am and the again at 2pm which were when Freddie would usually feed, but I’ve managed to get it down to one pump session at 1.30pm which is enough until I get home again.

Also be prepare for your baby to want to feed more than usual when you get home, and unfortunately they might start to wake up to feed when they’ve previously slept through the night.

Like breastfeeding in the beginning, it’s all about finding your feet. Having been back at work since May I feel that we now have a good system in place. Freddie does feed more when I get home and the following day but it’s working well for us. As far as work is concerned, I schedule the time into my calendar like I would a meeting and so far it’s gone without any problems.

Looking for a decent Breast Pump?

I’ve been using the Ameda Finesse Double Electric Breast Pump which is designed with the same technology as a hospital grade breast pump. It can be plugged into the mains or be used with batteries so you can move about.

The pump is both easy to use and wash, and is light enough for transporting to and from work. There are multiple settings to find the perfect speed and suction for both comfort and optimum supply. The proven Airlock Protection reduces the risk of contamination for safe milk.

It was recommended to use the Dr Brown’s Options+ Baby Bottles featuring the new breast-like teat shape which is great for switching between breast and bottle feeding. The teats flow mimics the flow of the breast which is perfect and reduces confusion for your baby.

Our Breastfeeding Journey has by no means been an easy one, but Freddie is fifteen months old now and we seem to have quite a good feeding routine going on which is definitely a weight off.

 

 

*We were sent the Ameda Finesse Double Electric Pump + a selection of Dr Brown’s bottles for the purpose of this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

14 Month Baby Update

14 Month Baby Update.

I don’t think we could love this little boy any more than we do. He’s such a happy mischievous little thing.

I can’t even count the amount of time we say ‘Oh Freddie’ in one day. If it’s gone quiet you know he’s up to something whether it’s eating something he shouldn’t, rummaging in a bag that’s been left in his reach or he’s managed to drag something off the table. He always greets you with the biggest grin, knowing full well that he’s been busted.

New things

Talking – He’s adding new things to his repertoire all the time. He can say:

  • Uh-oh (for all the things he knows he’s not meant to do)
  • No (usually when he’s doing the naughty thing)
  • All gone
  • Wow! (This is the cutest)
  • Na-nah (night night)
  • Hiya
  • Beh (Isabelle)
  • Mama and dada
  • Whatsat (what’s that)
  • Whosat (who’s that)
  • Ta (for everything)
  • Up
  • Out
  • Down

Climbing on everything! He uses whatever he can including the dog, his shape sorter and his ride on car. He makes my heart leap into my throat several times a day with his antics. He doesn’t seem to have any fear at all.

Teething

He’s pretty much got a mouth full of teeth. There are still a few back ones that are either not through or only partially through, but these don’t seem to give him too much bother. He loves brushing his teeth which is great and one less thing to battle with him over.

Play

Freddie has just started to sit on his car that we got him for his birthday. He’s still not too keen to be pushed on it though. Oh and he loves to climb onto the seat to reach things!

Building blocks are definitely Freddie’s favourite things. He has stickle bricks, duplo and the bigger mega blocks and he spends ages building and knocking towers down. I don’t remember the other two being able to do this at this stage but we play with them daily.

Sitting in and on things – whether it be a basket, a box or a cupboard. He loves to empty his toy baskets out and climb in and out.

Climbing! – Jeez this is so scary!! He climbs on anything and everything. His most recent is using the sofa as a leg up into the coffee table. Thankfully he hasn’t fallen off anything yet but it’s going to happen at some point soon.

Growth

Freddie’s fully fitting into his 12 – 18 months clothes now with the waist being the problem not the height. Like Isabelle he has the height but we always find things don’t quite fit around the waist. It’s fine with it being shorts weather but trousers can sometimes be a problem.

We’ve decided to hold off buying his first shoes since he prefers to be barefoot and doesn’t even like wearing socks. We bought some little soft beach shoes to wear in the park and garden but even then he tries to take them off.

Weaning

I’m not sure how long it’s considered as weaning, but eating with Freddie these days is a lot easier. He has everything we have which makes dinner time much easier for me.

He loves to use a fork for everything including to pick up his sandwiches.

If I had to pick a favourite food at the moment I would say pasta. He seems to like it in every shape and with any kind of sauce.

Feeding

We’re still breastfeeding and expressing for the days that I’m at work. This seems to be working well. There is the odd day when he’s not satisfied with his bottle, but he just makes up for it when I get home from work.

I work Tuesdays and Thursdays and he definitely feeds much more at night on those days as well as having two expressed bottles during the day.

Sleeping

Pretty much the same. He’s feeding about three times at night which I’m so used to doing now that It feels normal. The problem we have now is getting him to sleep in the first place. He’s still full of energy up until nearly 9pm every night when Chris and I are knackered.

Until next month……

Does Breastfeeding Really Burn Calories and if so How Many?

Does breastfeeding really burn calories and if so how much?

Does breastfeeding really burn calories and if so, how many extra calories can I eat? This is a question often asked by pre and postnatal women when considering the pros and cons of breastfeeding. There are many anecdotal claims online and in the wider health and fitness community that state breastfeeding burns calories to the extent that it can help new mothers to return to their pre-pregnancy weight. These sources even cite specific daily calorific amounts, ranging from anywhere between 300-500 calories per day.  But where does this number come from and more importantly, is it accurate? This is what we’ll explore in this article.

Does breastfeeding really burn calories and if so, how many extra calories can I eat? This is a question often asked by pre and postnatal women when considering the pros and cons of breastfeeding. There are many anecdotal claims online and in the wider health and fitness community that state breastfeeding burns calories to the extent that it can help new mothers to return to their pre-pregnancy weight. These sources even cite specific daily calorific amounts, ranging from anywhere between 300-500 calories per day.  But where does this number come from and more importantly, is it accurate? This is what we’ll explore in this article.

Is it 500 Calories?

The additional 500 calories per day value is regularly cited in blogs, magazine articles and even the occasional scientific paper. On this basis, you’d be forgiven for thinking that it is factual and that the value was reached at the end of some strong, authoritative research. But you would be wrong! In actual fact, the 500 extra calories per day is the result of a small study that didn’t even measure calorific expenditure to determine whether a woman burns more calories or not while she is lactating. What it actually measured and subsequently reported was the number of additional calories women who were exclusively breastfeeding their babies consumed in comparison to partially breastfeeding women, and those feeding their babies on a formula. On average the breastfeeding women tended to consume an additional 500 calories more than their formula-feeding counterparts, and so the myth was born! To make matters worse, the data collection in this study was self-reported, which is a notoriously unreliable way of collecting scientific information. 

Part of the reason why this myth has been so effective is because on the surface the mechanisms supporting it seems so plausible. If the body is doing more work [lactating] then it must require more energy right? There are two ‘possible’ mechanisms by which lactation ‘could’ help to contribute to a calorie deficit; the first is through its effect on basal metabolic rate (this is the amount of energy burned at rest) and the second is related to dietary-induced thermogenesis (heat production from food intake).  However, the evidence is generally unclear as to whether lactation has any direct effect on either of these two mechanisms.

Research Says….

According to Dewey (1997), women who are exclusively breastfeeding require around 670 additional calories per day. This estimate has been reached by considering breast milk volume, milk energy density and the conversion efficiency from dietary energy to breast milk. It also ‘assumes’ that both thermogenesis and basal metabolic rate are increased during lactation. If therefore a postnatal woman wants to lose weight steadily, consuming only 500 additional calories per day will create a net deficit of around 170 calories each day (1190 per week). Simples, as those little meercats from the TV adverts say!

A modest weight loss of around 1lb per week (or 0.5kg) is generally thought to be safe in the postnatal period. However, is this achieved when most postnatal women report gaining weight in the weeks and months after the birth of their baby?  Research in this area suggests that modifications to both diet and exercise will have the greatest effect and that low-calorie diets are only likely to result in more cravings, increasing the chance of a relapse. Furthermore, a daily energy intake of 1600 calories or less could actually threaten milk production. However, in the case of twins and triplets, milk production is greater and so this base threshold will need to be increased somewhat. In the battle for postnatal weight loss, slow and steady will always win the race.

Look at what you’re eating

Focusing a little more on dietary factors, how is it possible to create an energy deficit when you are sleep deprived, exhausted, hungry and you constantly have a baby (or two) attached to you?  The key here is to think more about what you are eating as opposed to how much. Several studies have revealed that the diet of lactating women is often deficient in grains, vegetables and dairy, which are all food sources that result in satiety and food satisfaction. Ensuring that you eat these foods is likely going to reduce those cravings for high energy and sugary snacks. What’s more worrying however about these deficient food groups is that they are all essential sources of micronutrients, like vitamins D and B12, calcium and iron (Robert-McComb 2014).  Reduced milk production is usually attributed to low protein intake.  Unsurprisingly however, a balanced diet of wholegrains, fresh vegetables and lean protein is the optimum breastfeeding diet to ensure a high-quality and sustained production of milk. Not only will increasing your intake of protein and fresh vegetables benefit your baby, it will also support your weight loss ambitions by controlling your blood sugar, reducing food cravings, leaving you feeling fuller for longer.

About the Author

Naomi Schon is a Registered Midwife (RM) with over 10 years’ midwifery experience. She is also a fully qualified Personal Trainer, yoga teacher and a Pilates instructor. Naomi is currently the lead clinical consultant for all things related to pregnancy and postpartum exercise at Health and Fitness Education (HFE), focusing primarily on their pre and postnatal courses and personal training courses.

Does breastfeeding really burn calories and if so, how many extra calories can I eat? This is a question often asked by pre and postnatal women when considering the pros and cons of breastfeeding. There are many anecdotal claims online and in the wider health and fitness community that state breastfeeding burns calories to the extent that it can help new mothers to return to their pre-pregnancy weight. These sources even cite specific daily calorific amounts, ranging from anywhere between 300-500 calories per day.  But where does this number come from and more importantly, is it accurate? This is what we’ll explore in this article.

References and Further Reading

H. A. Durham, C. A. Lovelady, R.J.N. Brouwer, K.M. Krause, T. Østbye (2011) Comparison of Dietary Intake of Overweight Postpartum Mothers Practicing Breastfeeding or Formula Feeding.

Journal of the American Dietetic Association Volume 111 (1) 67–74.

S L Nascimento, J Pudwell, F G Surita, K B Adamo and G N (2014) The effect of physical exercise strategies on weight loss in postpartum women: a systematic review and meta-analysis Smith International Journal of Obesity 38, 626–635.

J. J. Robert-McComb, Á. García González, L. Carraway. (2013) The Active Female Nutritional Guidelines and Energy Needs During Pregnancy and Lactation 517-533.

K. G. Dewey. (1997) Energy and Protein Requirements During Lactation. Annual Review of Nutrition 17 19-36.

*This is a sponsored post in collaboration with HFE

Baby Update – Happy First Birthday Freddie!

Baby Update – Happy First Birthday Freddie!

Aww Happy First Birthday Freddie! You’ve been here a whole 12 months, a year. It’s whizzed by but it feels like you’ve always been here.

You’re our last baby

Our heaviest baby

My biggest bump

The one that made us wait the longest

One year baby update. This first year has gone so quickly. We've had sleepless nights, teething, cracked nipples, tears from all of us but it's all been worth watching Freddie grow into the cheeky little chappy he is. Being at home with him watching him hit all the milestones has been priceless

Being baby number three we should know what we’re doing, but it seems that each and every baby throws our lives into turmoil until we find our ‘new normal’.

I had the perfect natural water birth that I wanted which was definitely ‘third time lucky’, and being a surprising 8lb 5oz so we just about squeezed him into the clothes we’d packed.

I’ve just gone back to work for a couple of days a week which I can’t lie, I struggle leaving him but the day goes quick and he’s pleased to see me when I’m back.

I think Freddie’s our most inquisitive. We had stair gates with the other two but never needed cupboard locks. Freddie loves nothing more than to be rummaging in a cupboard, switching the sky box or plugs on and off or yanking wires. You could give him all the toys in the world and he’d still make a beeline for things that he’s not allowed to touch.

New Stuff

  • Spitting – what’s that all about. He’ll be crawling around the room and then just stops to spit on the floor before crawling on. So gross!
  • Shhhh – he puts his finger up to his mouth to say ssshhhhh
  • Climbing on the sofa
  • Waving and saying bye or hiya
  • Kissing – so cute
  • Saying ‘what’s this’ or ‘what’s that’
  • Terrorising the dog. The poor dog who has so much patience as Freddie climbs on his bed, pulls his fur or not so gently pats him
  • Saying Belle in his own way – Bey
One year baby update. This first year has gone so quickly. We've had sleepless nights, teething, cracked nipples, tears from all of us but it's all been worth watching Freddie grow into the cheeky little chappy he is. Being at home with him watching him hit all the milestones has been priceless

Teething

We had a bad couple of nights and a day where he was such a grumpy boy which is so unusual for him and then when I was fishing a bit of paper out of his mouth I found two back teeth, one on each side at the top which I think were the culprit. He goes off his food when he’s teething so I’ve been making him some ice lollies made with yoghurt and fruit to ease his gums.

One year baby update. This first year has gone so quickly. We've had sleepless nights, teething, cracked nipples, tears from all of us but it's all been worth watching Freddie grow into the cheeky little chappy he is. Being at home with him watching him hit all the milestones has been priceless

Play

Freddie is such fun now. He loves to play and has cracked the stacking rings to a tee. He loves his shape sorter and gets frustrated when he can’t put the circle in the square hole. We have some toys upstairs and some downstairs which I rotate so that he’s excited to see some of the toys that he hasn’t played with for a while. We brought Isabelle’s wooden kitchen downstairs which was supposed to be temporary but Freddie really loves it so it’s stayed downstairs. It’s looking a bit worn so I’m going to jazz it up once the weather realises that it’s supposed to be summer.

One year baby update. This first year has gone so quickly. We've had sleepless nights, teething, cracked nipples, tears from all of us but it's all been worth watching Freddie grow into the cheeky little chappy he is. Being at home with him watching him hit all the milestones has been priceless

Growth

I haven’t had Freddie weighed since he had his review but he’s started to fit into some of his 12 – 18 month clothes. He still has gorgeous chubby baby legs which I love to squish.

Weaning

Freddie’s still loving his food. He’s such a messy eater but enjoys all the new flavours and textures. His favourite fruit at the moment is melon and he seems to like pasta in any form. He likes to feed himself and is learning to use a spoon. However, I gave him a baby fork that I found in the drawer and he uses this really well so he’s been having that each mealtime at the moment.

Now he’s one it’s easier to give him the same as us minus salt etc which means I’m not having to cook separate meals, but there are lots more recipes that I want to try him with so it will be a bit of both.

One year baby update. This first year has gone so quickly. We've had sleepless nights, teething, cracked nipples, tears from all of us but it's all been worth watching Freddie grow into the cheeky little chappy he is. Being at home with him watching him hit all the milestones has been priceless

Feeding

Yep we’re still breastfeeding and have no plans to stop at the moment. He’s happy, I’m happy so all is good.

Sleeping

His sleep had started to get better but recently it’s gone to pot again thanks to four back teeth on their way through. Fingers crossed this settles down again soon. I’m thinking of giving his cot a go. Chris has wanted this for a while but as we’re breastfeeding it’s been easier for me having him right there when he wakes up for a feed, plus he goes straight back to sleep.

I would like to get my evenings back though so it might be time to give it a go.

This year has gone so fast and we’ve loved it all. He’s brought so much mess, noise and hardwork but he’s the final piece in our jigsaw and worth all of it.

One year baby update. This first year has gone so quickly. We've had sleepless nights, teething, cracked nipples, tears from all of us but it's all been worth watching Freddie grow into the cheeky little chappy he is. Being at home with him watching him hit all the milestones has been priceless

11 Month Baby Update

11 Month Baby Update

11 Month Baby Update – Wahhhhhh Freddie’s nearly a year old which means back to work for me this month. I’ve had the best time off with him watching him grow into the awesome funny little dude that he is. I genuinely don’t know how I feel about leaving him, but with two weeks to go just the thought of leaving him makes me well up.

You’ve probably heard of separation anxiety where the baby doesn’t cope very well being separated from their Mummy, well I think I have it but it’s me that doesn’t cope well without him. I’m not sure if it’s because he’s my last baby or because I’m breastfeeding or it may be that we’ve literally spent the last eleven months together 24/7. I’m burying my head in the sand hoping that its all a joke that I have to go back to work. Surely they’re going to email and tell me that they don’t need me and no need to pay my maternity pay back right!

New Stuff

  • Climbing the stairs
  • Saying ‘up’ all the way up the stairs
  • Saying ‘Hayyyyyy’
  • Saying No to everything
  • Pointing and shaking his head
  • Worked out how to use a non-spill cup and then spits all the water out
  • Speech – he can say a few things now
  • Went his first toddler group

Loves

  • Just everything really except Nappy change time
  • Ride on toys

Hates

  • Nappy change time/getting dressed

Teething

We’ve had quite a few nights where he’s cried out in a painful cry kind of way as well as red cheeks but no new teeth at the moment.

Play

I took him to his first Toddler Group last week. He’s been to baby groups but not ones with screaming, running around 2/3 year olds. It was quiet to start with but then as more people came it got louder. His little face watching all the toddler race around was a bit unsure and I thought he was going to cry, but instead he banged the maraca that he had as hard as he could and joined in with the shouting.

I put him on a ride on car and that was it, he loved it and kept going back to find one so that’s pretty much what we spent the rest of the time doing.

He’s also stolen Isabelle’s kitchen and play food which he seems to loves bashing about.

Growth

Freddie has just had his 10 month/12 month check up with the Health Visitor. We were sent a questionnaire for both age brackets and he was weighed and measured. He now weighs 20lb 7oz and measures at 75.5cm so is apparently tall for his age.

I didn’t feel like I had any concerns. The emphasis seemed to be in getting him to have half a pint of cows milk a day from 12 months, but I’m still breastfeeding and anticipate still doing so at 12 months. Sleep was mentioned and as usual I mumbled through this as co-sleeping still seems to get the disapproval of most people. We were offered a referral to the sleep clinic which I politely declined.

Weaning

We’re still enjoying our food journey. He loves trying new foods and likes a wide variety. He’s loving the sandwich thins for sandwiches which are the perfect size for little ones with his favourite filling being cream cheese and strawberry.

He has a drink of water with every meal and the little monkey loves to suck the water in and dribble down his front or just sprays it all over the place!

Feeding

All going well. Still breastfeeding and thankfully he’s cut down the night feeds which is much better. I’m going back to work at the end of this month so I’m hoping this is t going to cause him too much upset.

Sleeping

He’s finally cut down on his night feeds so sleeping a lot better. We’re still co-sleeping but we’re going to put his cot in our room first of all with the sides up to see if he will go down and if not then we’ll attach it to our bed as a bit of an extension so that we all have a bit more room.

It’s the putting him down that we struggle with. You can do this in as much slow motion as physically possible and he still knows and wakes up. I know that you’re supposed to put them down awake but he just looks at you with a ‘don’t be silly’ look on his face!!

As I said l, we’re happy to co-sleep so it’s not something that I’m going to push too much.

Lisa x

9 Month Baby Update

9 Month Baby Update

9 Month Baby Update – Nine months of this yummy little boy whose personality is developing into the cheeky chappy to match his cheeky face.

Every month that goes by he’s becoming more fun even though I’d love him to slow down so that we can soak up every bit of him as he changes.

New stuff

  • Pulling himself up to standing on everything
  • Saying ‘Ta’ I wasn’t sure that I’d heard him right, but he says ta when he wants something and will say it when he wants to keep the thing that you’re trying to take off him like a random bit of fluff or something else he shouldn’t have
  • Crawling – there’s no stopping him now.
  • Clapping
  • Splashing in the bath
  • Another three teeth so eight now. Four top and four bottom
  • Copying – Isabelle has an awful cough and he mimics her cough and claps to himself
  • Nappy struggle

Loves:

Eating things he shouldn’t like his bath sponge, random bits of floor fluff or anything else that he shouldn’t have.

Strings – ties on trousers and tops. He likes to twiddle them and put them in his mouth.

Being outside – I think he’s definitely happier if we’ve been out and about than just staying at home.

Fruit – we have another fruit bat. His favourite is pear at the moment.

Climbing – he’s not for sitting still now that he can move. He prefers to be up on his feet so he uses us as human climbing frames. Hair makes for a great rope!

Hates:

Getting his nappy changed. Already he’s trying to flip onto his back, refuses to put his legs up or down and generally squirming away. We’re using a changing table at the moment, but I think we’re going to have to start using a mat on the floor now that he’s so wriggly.

Getting dressed or undressed – it’s a total battle to get him dressed now, especially putting his arms in things.

Sitting still – he wants to be up and about and is as fast as lightening when you’re not looking so we’ve had a few bumps when we haven’t been quick enough.

Teething

I think he’s coping quite well with teething. We know the signs when he’s teething now. He refuses most foods by putting his hand over his mouth, his nappies change and he gets really red cheeks. He’s pretty good at using his teethers to chomp down on, and we just know that he’s gearing up for a couple of grumpy days and rubbish sleep. He has eight teeth now, and although we have a rough couple of nights it’s not as strung out as when Isabelle was teething which seemed endless.

We dose him up on Calpol and use teething granules as well as making sure that he has access to teethers at all times and lots of cuddles.

Play

Freddie loves to play. We set him up on his mat with a variety of toys and get down to play with him. He loves stacking bricks to knock down and loves the basket of shakers and bells that we had for Isabelle when she was little. He will play for a little while before wanting to just climb all over you.

Growth

I had Freddie weighed and he now weighs 19lb 9oz which at first I was a bit worried about as he’s only put on about 1.5lb in about two months, but he’s so active and is eating as he should. They don’t seem to measure babies in the clinic I go to and trying to do it myself would be like trying to wrestle a chimpanzee.

Weaning

Freddie loves his food. He’s up for new flavours and will try everything he’s given. We do give him the odd purée which he’s not so great at eating because he doesn’t really like opening his mouth for a spoon. He’s tried such a wide variety of foods already and it’s fun seeing his reactions to different flavours.

He does seem to store his food in his cheeks though, so the other day I removed a piece of orange that he’d been given two hours before, so we now know to look out for things he’s got stored in his hamster cheeks!

Feeding

Feeding during the day is good. We have a good routine which times in well with his eating and the school run.

Night time is just a nightmare. Freddie feeds every hour and a half, sometimes less. It’s starting to take its toll now and it’s hard because nobody can help me with this. I’m being advised to ‘just give home a bottle’ BUT he’s breastfed so we won’t be taking this unhelpful advice!

Sleeping

we’re still co-sleeping and it’s fine since I don’t have to get out of bed for the multiple night feeds.

Even if we wanted him in his own bed, he currently doesn’t have one as he’s too big for his crib and we’ve yet to put his cot up. I’m happy with the sleeping situation and it’s not going to be forever.

It’s scary to think that we’ve started to think about what we’re going to do for his first birthday.

What did you do for your little ones first birthday?

Lisa x

Lilith Loves Henry Teether Review

Lilith Loves Henry Teether Review

Lilith Loves Henry Teether Review – Having Freddie we knew that we would have the inevitable trials and tribulations that come with teething. All babies react differently to teething pain, and of course they develop and cut their teeth at very different rates.

Ryan dealt with teething quite well and I was surprised when he got his first tooth through at four months old. He would go off his food, get a temperature and would be a bit unsettled and grumpy.

Isabelle teethed for a long time before she cut a tooth and it was a tough time for all of us as it disrupted her sleep, made her quite poorly and she cried a LOT but once they started coming through they came through quite quickly.

Freddie is a bit of a mix up of both. He gets a temperature and has a couple of off days and is unsettled at night, and then out another one pops.

Teething is something that you have to prepare for and give your baby the opportunity to soothe their gums as much as possible. I’ve written about ways to help with teething previously which you can read here, but essentially you need to be armed with some or all of the following:

Teething Gels/ Powders – These are a great quick way to help sooth gums. Freddie prefers the powders which I will give him before bed and when he wakes up during the night. I also keep some of the sachets in my changing bag, but just watch out if you’re giving them when you’re outside as we had an incident where the powder blew into Freddies face!

lilith loves henry teether review

Amber Teething Necklaces – Although I’m not onto my third baby, I still haven’t used an Amber Teething Necklace or anklet but a lot of parents swear by these.

Teething Rings and Toys – By the bucket load. A lot of new baby toys have teething parts to them which is great for your baby to have constant access to them to chew and suck. We were recently chosen to be Brand Ambassadors for the Lilith Loves Henry range which is pretty awesome. The range includes teething toys, teething necklaces, dummy clips, jewellery and amber teething jewellery. The whole range is not only very stylish but each piece has lots of nobbles and textures to ease teething pain.

We were sent a bear teething ring which is the perfect size for little hands and is a combination of silicone and wood. We take this one everywhere with us in the changing bag so that Freddie has access to it whenever he needs it.

Dummies – Whilst none of my children have had a dummy, there’s no denying that for some babies a dummy can be a good source of comfort when they most need it.

Teething Biscuits – We’ve given these a try again and Freddie seems to quite like them. We use Bickiepegs but I have also seen recipes on Pinterest to make your own.

Food – Freddie always goes off food for a couple of days when he has a tooth coming through apart from cold cucumber and carrots straight from the fridge. He loves cucumber anyway, but it’s the only thing that he will take when the tooth is just under the gum.

Frozen Food – If your baby is off there food, you could try them with a frozen yoghurt or a breast milk lolly. I’ve also made these Blueberry Yoghurt Bites (halved blueberries) which are a treat for them.

lilith loves henry teether review

Teething Jewellery – This is Jewellery that you wear which your baby can play with during breastfeeding and chew on to help with teething pain. These are generally made with silicone or wooden beads and are quite attractive to babies like usual jewellery is.

Our thoughts

We were also given a Lilith Loves Henry Teething Necklace which Freddie really likes. He loves to chew on it which can be helpful when I need him to sit still for a few moments on my lap, but he also likes to twiddle the beads whilst he’s feeding. He has tried to feed and stuff the necklace in his mouth which doesn’t really work.

I love the Grey Bear Teether that we have. It’s a lovely size and I’m all about grey at the moment so it was a good choice for us. The teether goes everywhere with us in the changing bag and is the go to teether when Freddies a bit grumpy or just needs something to hold.

The necklace which I tend to wear daily gives him constant access to a teether and the bonus of the necklace is that there’s no chance of him being able to throw this on the floor which is a fun game that he likes to play now. I would definitely recommend the Lilith Loves Henry range as a lovely new baby present, they’re all so gorgeous.

If you have any more teething tips leave me a comment below AND if you like the look of our Lilith Loves Henry Teether or Necklace then you can pop over and buy one for your own baby which are very affordable and so appealing to babies.

Lisa x

*As part of our Brand Ambassador role we have received a teether and a teething necklace in exchange for our review and online promotion.

8 Month Baby Update

8 Month baby update

8 Month Baby Update – It was scary when Freddie hit six months and now we’re hurtling forward and he’s now the grand age of eight months.

8 Month Baby Update

His personality is really coming through now. He’s a happy, smiley little boy who only cries if he has a genuine need. He’s very inquisitive and is at his happiest in the centre of what everybody else is doing. I’m loving that he’s a Mummy’s boy but this could just be because I’m his Mobile milk bar!

This past month has been totally tainted by the following sentence “When are you going back to work?” With the accompanied head tilt to the side. It’s driving me nuts. I know I have to go back to work but I just want to enjoy the time that I have before that happens. I’m enjoying being with him every single day. I’m also enjoying being able to pick Isabelle up from school as well as being available for all the school events and after school play dates.

New stuff:

  • Pulling himself up on his toy box
  • Rocking backwards and forwards on his hands and knees before launching himself forward
  • Making kissing noises
  • Shouting
  • Yeah! – shouting this (think Tom Jones)
  • Saying Be-be – as in Belle-Belle (sister)
  • Five teeth. He has two top teeth and three on the bottom.

Loves:

  • People. He loves when he’s surrounded by people and other babies.
  • Peek-a-Boo – it’s his absolute favourite thing to do.
  • His Daddy – Chris works long hours so when he’s home Freddie can’t get enough of him and grins from ear to ear.
  • Food or more specifically putting so much in his mouth so he looks like a hamster and then spitting it out.
  • A bath – we went through a rocky patch where he would scream when he had a bath, and it was just a case of get him in, wash him and get him back out again. These days he loves it and enjoys having his bath toys to play with.
  • Drinking bath water – he gets the sponge and sucks all of the water out of it. Yum!

Hates:

  • Having his face wiped
  • Putting sleeves on – oh the drama!
  • Broccoli

Teething:

He now has five teeth which explains the last couple of days where he’s been chewing and dribbling like crazy. He has two top teeth and three on the bottom.

We have teethers all over the place, and I’ve been wearing a teething necklace which he seems to like, and it also gives him something to twiddle whilst he feeds instead of pulling my hair.

He’s chomped down hard on toys a couple of times which has really hurt him. He tends to go off solid food when his gums are sore and will only accept cold fruit and cucumber.

Play:

Freddie’s a lot more fun now and loves to play with his toys. He sits up without support but we still put a cushion behind him just in case he gives up and flops back.

He likes to take toys out of his basket himself and always makes a beeline for certain toys. He likes his squeaky eggs, ring stacker and a little wooden toy where the little coloured people pop out of the top when you press them down. He likes it when you build up his bricks so that he can knock them down and his musical instruments which were Isabelle’s when she was a baby.

He finds things amusing and will join in laughing when other people are laughing at stuff.

Growth:

I had Freddie weighed a couple of weeks ago and he’s currently 18lb 4oz. He’s wearing a mixture of 3 – 6 months and 6 – 9 months clothes and this very much depends on the clothing brand.

Weaning:

We’re well underway with weaning with lots of different flavours and textures. We do mostly Baby Led Weaning with the odd purée and Freddie much was refers being able to feed himself.

He’s such a messy eater and has worked out that if he chucks it on the floor, the dog comes flying over to gobble it up which he finds quite amusing.

I think that he probably throws more food on the floor than he’s actually eating, but I’m happy with the amount that he is getting.

I totally forgot how much mess a weaning baby makes so we’ve had quite a few times when he’s gone straight from the Highchair to the bath!

So far the fruits are winning but root vegetables come a very close second. He also really likes hummus!

Feeding:

Freddie is still breastfeeding but seems to have his days and nights muddled up. He doesn’t feed that much during the day, but at night he’s feeding like a newborn, every 1 -2 hours some nights.

I’m finding this really hard and exhausting. Chris wants to try giving him a bottle at night (formula) but it’s been so hard to get to this point that I would hate to add formula back into the mix. I know that he’s only thinking that it might help with Freddie’s sleeping but I really don’t want to go back there.

Sleeping:

well as you’ve just read that he’s feeding like a newborn you’ll have guessed that we’re not getting a lot of sleep and the sleep we are getting is very broken sleep.

Freddie is co-sleeping with us and this is working for the little sleep that I am getting. I would like to start putting him in his cot for the beginning part of the evening instead of having to go to bed with him each night so that I could have a bit of an evening to myself so am going to persevere with this.

Next month I’m guessing he’ll be mobile and it will all be about stairgates and having eyes in the back of my head.

7 Month Baby Update

7 Month Baby Update

7 Month Baby Update – We had the best first Christmas with little Freddie. He loved the lights and decorations and even got stuck into unwrapping presents on Christmas Day.

7 Month Baby Update

You can definitely see his little personality shining through now. He’s the smiliest baby and is so pleased to see people and be involved with his surroundings.

He’s quite grabby and a bit rough with it. Poor Isabelle has her hair pulled on a daily basis.

New Stuff:

  • Four teeth
  • Sitting up unaided
  • Getting on his hands and knees
  • Clicking his tongue
  • Growling
  • Chuckling

Teething

He now has four teeth, two top and two bottom and has started to grind them which is a horrible sound. We all have awful nights when his teeth push through but it’s only a couple of nights so not as bad as it could be. He really loves his teethers which we use in combination with teething granules and Calpol when needed. His to teeth seem really wide for baby teeth so he’s really suffered with these and they aren’t all the way through yet.

Play

Freddie loves to play and we have a couple of play sessions a day where we get lots of toys out on the floor where he can sit up, roll around and generally shuffle his way around. He loves this and it’s a great way to give him some independence out of my arms. He loves things that make noises (of course). We bought a bumbo just as a back up for when he just gives up on sitting up and falls any which way. It was a total fail since he stretches out and rolls to one side to escape. I think we may have left it too late for this to have been any use to us. We do have a jumperoo which he loves and at the moment we’re just deciding on whether or not to get a baby walker so that he can come and find me if he wants to.

Growth

I plan to go and get him weighed this week but i think he’s growing just fine. He’s quite long so some of his 3 – 6 month trousers are too short but size 6 – 9 months are a bit too big around the waist. He’s in both 3 – 6 and 6 – 9 month sleepsuits and the same with tops. He still has his scrummy baby rolls which I love.

Feeding

Freddie is still breastfeeding and I don’t see this changing for the foreseeable. At the very least I would like to get to a year but ultimately I’m going to let Freddie lead the way as to how long he wants to feed for.

He’s bitten me quite a few times now which really hurts, and when he first got his bottom teeth he was scraping them on my nipples which lasted for a few days. I thought this might be the end but we’re still going strong. It would be nice if he slept a bit longer at night as he’s currently feeding around five times a night.

Weaning

We’re loving this. I love the look on his face when we put him in the Highchair and he eagerly waits to find out what he’s getting. So far we’ve tried:

  • Toast
  • Pear
  • Banana
  • Cheese
  • Breadsticks
  • Melon
  • Strawberries
  • Scrambled egg
  • Soft boiled egg
  • Pasta
  • Sweet potato
  • Potato
  • Carrot
  • Parsnip
  • Green beans
  • Organix wotsits
  • Kiddylicious wafers
  • Baby rice cakes
  • Peas
  • Pita bread
  • Baby porridge
  • Broccoli

So far so good with only broccoli being the only thing that I’m not sure he likes the texture of. It made him shudder.

I’m going to start putting together some little meals soon, but for now he’s enjoying all the different tastes and textures.

7 month baby update

Sleeping

Hmm the sleeping isn’t going so great. He co-sleeps with us at night and I don’t mind this at all, but he is waking for feeds around five times a night still which is exhausting.

I need to look into this a little bit more and see if I can get him to go down on his own at the beginning part of the evening so that I get a little bit of baby free time, even just to sit and watch TV. He only sleeps with my arms around him which means that I have to go to bed quite early.

During the day he will nap in his pram if we’re out and about or in my arms which doesn’t really give me a lot of time to do things around the house. Again, now that Belle is back at school I’m going to try and get him in his crib so that he gets a decent chunk of sleep and I can get on and do the washing etc instead of trying to do everything one handed when he’s awake.

Maternity Leave

When the New Year hit, so did the return to work dread. At the moment the thought of leaving Freddie fills me with dread. I don’t want to leave him AT ALL!

I’m due back to work in May so we need to start thinking about childcare and the logistics of having two children in different places. I’d like Freddie to go to nursery, but the thought of having one at nursery and one at school is making my brain ache trying to work out the drop off and pick up.

I also know that I need to work on his naps so that he will sleep during the day wherever that may be.

If you have two kids going in different directions I’d love to know how you work it all out and how long you work for.

Lisa x

6 Month Baby Update

6 Month Baby Update

6 Month Baby Update – Happy half a year baby boy! We’ve seen a real change in Freddie over the past month. He’s got a cheeky personality and wants nothing more than to be involved in anything and everything.

6 month baby update

Teething

He has his first tooth! This came through a couple of weeks ago after a few days of flame red cheeks, dribbling and chewing. He spends a lot of his day fiddling with his tooth with his tongue and has made it known by biting his sisters knee, daddy’s fingers and most excruciating me when he feeds. Ouch! We’ve been coping with the teething with lots of teething toys, calpol and teething granules. This past few days though he’s been spitting the calpol out which is an annoyingly new thing that he’s started.

Play

Freddie loves to play. He likes lights and sounds as well as music. His favourite toy is his car-car which was one of Isabelle’s by Playschool which I don’t think you can buy anymore. He’s happy to play on the floor for a little while, and now that he can roll around seems to be happy. We also bought a jumperoo which he can bounce like a pro in now. It’s a godsend when I’m trying to get dinner sorted.

6 month baby update

Growth

He’s still got his adorable chunky baby legs and whilst he’s a big boy he’s quite long. He’s now at the in-betweeny size on clothes so size 3 – 6 months are getting too small and some he’s outgrown but the 6 – 9 months clothes are way too big.

6 month baby update

Feeding

The feeding has been going well. We’ve ditched formula completely as it’s been really hit and miss for him taking the one remaining bottle that we were giving him so it’s breastfeeding all the way now. I’d like to go until he turns one, but he bit me the other day and pierced my nipple. It was excruciating and I’m hoping that it was a one off, but he is constantly scraping his tooth on my nipple as he feeds which is not very nice at all.

6 month baby update

Weaning

We decided to wean him just before the six month mark as he was getting so cross and upset when we were eating and constantly trying to grab food out of our hands. He’s only having one meal a day which is mostly baby porridge, carrots and sweet potato. He does like a bit of toast in his hands as well as the Ella’s kitchen giant wotsit crisps (6m+). I think we’re going to do a combination of baby led and purées dependent on what we have in the fridge. So far so good with this. He loves sitting at the table with us, and is managing really well to feed himself. I think we’ll carry on like this for a few more weeks before we add in lunch and breakfast on a daily basis.

Sleeping

We’ve given up with trying to get him in his crib endlessly and are currently co-sleeping. I’m sure that a lot of people will have a lot to say on this topic but at the moment it’s working for us so that’s what we’re doing.