Now that I have survived a full year of parenting (how did this happen?!), I’ve been noticing more and more friends who are expecting or just had their newest addition ask Facebook land what are some key products that could make life easier when dealing with all things feeding related. After answering a few and hearing feedback from others, I thought I’d compile a list of some of the incredible things that made feeding time so much easier for me, and some that did not.
Let me preface this by saying, during Abby’s first year of life, she was formula fed. I started off exclusively breastfeeding but switched to formula. I’m completely for breastfeeding, formula feeding, or both. And I have no problem with a woman feeding her baby in public, as long as she doesn’t roll her eyes at me as I prepare a bottle of formula (yes, this has happened). Whatever works for you and your family is best! My choice to switch was difficult and there were important factors that led me to where I am today – but I have no regrets. And once she turned one, and we finished the last opened container, we switched to milk and haven’t looked back. We were really excited to save extra money from not buying formula, but apparently, we forgot to factor in that our daughter eats like her father. This grocery bill is out of control. Oh well, at least she’s cute. And at least he does the dishes.
On to the list because Abby is working on what sounds like a big poop so time is of the essence. (And enjoy some photos from the early days of motherhood. Look how tiny my baby girl was!)
Hands-free pumping bra (LIFESAVER):
Yes, this looks like something out of Madonna’s closet and it is somewhat intimidating when you first use it, but BELIEVE me, it’s a LIFESAVER. Aside from a stellar breast pump, this is a necessity for all pumping moms. Pumping is incredibly weird. This bra is also incredibly weird. But, it does give you the ability to have both hands free to do important things like sort bills, respond to a work email or, more realistically, drink coffee while surfing Facebook.
Madonna aint got nothing on me
Travel formula dispensers (LIFESAVER):
Measuring out formula while your baby screams for food is stressful in itself. Add in the factor that you aren’t home, so your attempting to scoop the right amount into the bottle while patrons at a crowded restaurant stare in judgement as you try to measure quickly to soothe your child. If you could do it any faster, you’re welcome to try! With these, scoop the amount you need at home, and when baby gets fussy, pour directly into the bottle. And before you say it’s a waste of money because you could just use any container to do this – that is so much harder than you think. Believe me! I tried! It usually ended up with precious powder scattered on the ground. The spout on the travel ones perfectly fits into your bottle. I’d rather spend the $7 now, to ultimately save money in the long wrong because as formula moms know, formula aint cheap! (Side note, once you’re over the formula stage, these come in handy for traveling with snacks – because sometimes you just need a car snack!)
Apparently that was a good meal
Infinity Scarf Nursing Cover (BLOWS):
I wanted so badly to love this – it had multiple functions to make my life easier. By definition, I should love it. It is a fashionable scarf that turns into a discreet nursing cover. But, wow, was it terrible. And maybe I just didn’t have the correct brand (though I did try different ones) but I hated it. Now if you are comfortable feeding without a cover, I applaud you. I honestly do! But, I just wasn’t that person. So back to the scarf. As a scarf it was cute, but somewhat thin (something I could deal with if it’s true purpose worked correctly). And it seemed that it should be easy enough, put baby on boob, cover with scarf. Due to the design, it covered Abby’s face so much that she would end up flushed and cranky, and attempting to readjust her was nearly impossible. It was a two person job to get her situated right in the first place. The scarf kept falling down, in some light you could actually see through it, and it just ended up falling to the ground in most cases. And there was my boob, just flopping around. And then there was the milk that eventually spewed all over it meaning you were then wearing a scarf that smelled like breast milk. Epic fail.
Seriously, no idea how these things work
Peanut Butter (AMAZING):
Feedings, both breast and bottle can take time. And it usually happens when you’re stomach is begging for substance. This is especially true when breastfeeding. Add in recovering from birth and lack of sleep, I was STARVING constantly. Hence the mighty peanut butter. When breastfeeding, I always made sure to have a jar and spoon in arms reach. Now, if you are allergic to peanuts or just don’t like it, I’m not encouraging you to suffer. My favorite part of it was that it was a one handed snack – VERY IMPORTANT, especially during late night feedings. Find your own one handed snack – or get your own jar. Mine is sadly empty.
Yes, my photographer got a photo of me eating PB at the hospital. Photo credit: Valerie Lazzari Photography
Alright, time to change a poop. Let me know what has been a lifesaver or opposite for you. And now that we are fully in the milk and food zone, look out for a blog post focusing on toddler eating hacks. I can’t believe she’s basically a toddler!