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Baby Feeding

Baby Essentials Checklist - Feeding Baby

The feeding cycle is changing constantly and you will need to add and subtract from your "feeding collection" as you move through each phase. There is certainly one things that will or should last you for a while and that is a good nursing chair and pillow.  They are expensive, but getting the right one will be worth it.

From Left to Right:
1. Joya Rocker;
2. Aden & Anais Bibs;
3. Stokke Tripp Trapp Chair;

4. 201 Organic Baby Purees Book;  
5. Lansinoh Nipple Cream;
6. Grow Diana Dream Breast Pump

Baby Essentials Checklist Feeding Baby

Newborn Sleep

newborn sleep

When I see my little girl sleeping I just want to kiss her little nose, squeeze her little cheeks and cuddle her into me as close as I can.  But that’s not advised!  Let sleeping babies sleep.  It’s a glorious thing.  And you don’t realise how glorious it is unless you have a baby that doesn't sleep well.  Getting into a good newborn sleep routine is one of the most important things to do when you bring baby home from the hospital. 

It all sounds wonderful in theory but can be quite tough, especially if you have a child with colic and reflux issues, or something else.  The below is a guide – a baby sleep checklist of sorts.

  1. A well fed baby is a happy (and sleepy) baby.
  2. Establish a routine as quickly as possible, either use the babies own rhythm to identify key times of the day for sleeping or eating or use a guide – Save Our Sleep and Happiest Baby on the Block are two great books. I personally used Save Our Sleep and it was a fantastic resource with routines by age. Rebecca Judd also has a routine on her blog that she used for her babies.
  3. Make sure your baby is well burped.  Most people don’t spend enough time on this.
  4. If you are having trouble with sleep, try and rule out possible reasons e.g. reflux, colic, not enough burping, routine, not enough food, room/bed temperature.  Speak to your maternal health nurse and doctor, read and talk to other mums to see if there is any sage advice they can offer.
  5. The maternal health nurse network have sleep consultants that can come out to your home and help with getting you back on track. They are at no cost for a one time visit.  Or there are independent, private sleep consultants that can help in the home.
  6. Have an established bed time routine – keep a consistent time for everything; it means baby gets used to a certain way of things happening before bed time.  Try: a warm relaxing bath with lavender oil to relax baby; make sure tummy is full and well burped; read a little baby book; if baby needs some extra help snoozing off try a few minutes rubbing or tapping.  Whatever you do, consistency is important
  7. Room temperature is very important.  We have a tendency to overheat because we are worried about baby not being warm enough.  If baby is too hot she won’t be able to settle.
  8. Lavender – try this in the bath, a candle, oil in the humidifier or oil burner before bedtime.  It’s very calming.
  9. Sleep school – I have heard great things about Masada.  It does not come cheap but for parents that need some time out and need settling time of their own it is incredible.  You need a referral from your GP.
  10. Try not to disrupt sleep as much as possible, i.e. don’t wake your baby and try to put baby into his own bed so that he wakes in the same place he went to bed. (This is where a routine helps – you can build appointments etc. around when baby is due to sleep and eat, no surprises). Obviously it’s not always possible, i.e. when baby unexpectedly falls asleep in the car, but as with anything in life, all you can do is do your best.
  11. Daytime sleep is absolutely crucial for night time sleep so do your best in getting a good daytime sleep routine happening.
  12. Make sure the room environment, particularly the sleep area does not have distractions (or attractions) and is as serene as possible.

Getting your newborn sleep rhythm right doesn't have to be difficult but it does take a little bit of effort, patience and discipline.

Here are some other resources:

Baby Centre - Understanding your babys sleep

Raising Children Network - Baby Sleep

 

Baby Nursery Ideas - Creating points of interest

Create different spaces in the baby’s nursery which will work as baby grows. For example, a room can have a reading nook, play space, little discoveries throughout for when she grows as well as the functional feeding/calm space, sleeping and dressing area.  

It sounds like a lot but is manageable in even the smallest of rooms.  

Keep eating and sleeping spaces consistent with limited distractions (for as long as you can) which will help add calm, comfort and focus for bubs. 

Make sure that around the room, there are little point of interest that will keep bubs enjoying her room and always making new discoveries.  Keep in mind that spaces should work for you to spend time with her as a baby and then for her to be able to enjoy on her own once she is older.

Little discoveries in a room can be as simple as using wall stickers of animals and shapes etc.. at various heights in the room for baby to find.  Remember is doesn't have to be complicated.  Just try and imagine how fun it is to discover hidden treasures. Try having a crawl around on the floor yourself.  And also think about things hanging on the walls. 

Reading nook

hint: IKEA spice racks secured to the wall for little book nooks.

Play Space

Little discoveries

Hint: Etsy is amazing for these kinds of cute finds.

Sleeping

 

Feeding

Images sourced from Pinterest

Breastfeeding resources

Breastfeeding is natural.  And I truly do believe that it is best.  But it is far from easy and does not come as "naturally" as some people make it out to be.  Being the mother that can whip out a boob and have a baby attached in the blink of any eye in a public space is lucky group.  And some don't ever get there.

iStock_000003226881XSmall.jpg

I have had both a lucky and unlucky experience breastfeeding run.  I am not one of the blessed and it was an emotional roller-coaster when I was in the thick of it.  

My mother had no milk at all.  Not a drop.  And I had a wet nurse - the days before formula necessitated it. When I was pregnant, aside from having a healthy baby, I wanted to breastfeed. I didn't care about anything else.  I knew it was not a great sign when my boobs didn't grow even a cm when I was pregnant.  (Slight side step - EVERYTHING else GREW.  A lot. But my boobs, which are tiny anyway, not a mm. It's my one and only gripe with the universe about my pregnancy. Come on!!!!) 

Anyway, while I was pregnant there were positive signs as well - I had colostrum coming through in small amounts, and ultimately, I had a little bit of milk.  So I was able to feed my baby some breastmilk in conjunction with formula. 

The midwives and maternal health nurses are very helpful but beware - everyone is going to give you differing advice.  And some people will be very insistent on things that may not sit well with you.  Follow your instincts and do what is right for your family.  And even though I found this hard to do myself, please don't get disheartened.  

Below are some other resources I thought you might find useful.  And Check out our previous blogs on this subject. 

breastfeeding resources

www.breastfeeding.asn.au
www.breastfeedingonline.com
www.nhmrc.gov.au/publications – go to ‘Infant feeding Guidelines’

Tips & bits... High chair do’s and don'ts

High chairs are prime real estate guzzlers.  They are located in the heart of your home, and are used for one of the most important tasks you have to do.  Take your time, be realistic, and make sure what you get is not a safety hazard – either for you as a tripping hazard or for baby.

 Stokke Tripp Trapp Chair

Stokke Tripp Trapp Chair

  • Understand the room that you have – where will it be and what is the available space? Use a measuring tape to understand what size chair you can fit.
  • Width of the chair - be careful you can be tripping over them if they are too      wide. Not ideal with hot food or baby in hands.
  • Simple is best – lots of cavities and indents are difficult to clean – and when      baby starts eating solids and then self-feeding – there is a lot to clean.
  • Check that everything is easily cleaned – detachable, machine washable or easy to wipe
  • Check the safety – baby’s wriggle and squirm – can they get out or tip the chair.
  • Make sure it has a good harness that will work when baby is small and quite      placid as well as older, bigger and wanting to stand up in it.
  • Check that is has an insert to support small babies, but removable once baby is larger
  • Make sure the back is high enough to give the baby good support
  • If you do not have a lot of space, consider the seat options available:
  1. Independent seats (with high backs e.g. Mamas and Papas and Bumbo seats) that can either stand alone or be attached to an adult chair
  2. Chair attachments that cannot stand on their own but that are very compact (check and follow age recommendations)
  3. Child seat that converts to a standard chair as your child grows

 

     

    What's going on... The Huffington Post

    I was recently sent an article from The Huffington Post and was surprised to see they have a Parents Section.  Great articles.  Very interesting, smart pieces.  

    Today they have an interesting article on breastfeeding which is worth a read. 

    What I would add to this - 

    • In your Bounty bag, you will find a sample of Lansinoh cream which will help your any nipple tenderness immediately.  It's amazing.  Don't wait for the soreness to go away. It won't.  Don't suffer.  Use it immediately. Your midwives and nurses will suggest it, I'm sure.  And if you have persistent soreness, it is likely baby is not latching on properly so keep asking the nurses and midwives until it's right. 
    • The article mentions pumping more often in short bursts if you are having issues with supply.  The best advice that I was given was nursing in two hour intervals during the day for a week or so to help boost supply.  Keep to 5-10min feeding bursts.
    • The other great advice that I read and have followed to this day with my baby is Tizzie Halls feeding and sleeping routines.  I found her approach to feeding and pumping increased my supply. 
    • Finally, whilst this did not work for me personally, others swear by lactation cookies.  Easy to make with recipes on line, they have helped other women increase their supply. 
    • If you are finding low supply to be an issue speak to you GP - there are medicinal options also that may help you quickly and that you can do for the 3-6 month minimum recommended breastfeeding time.  

    Links & resources

    A few links for you covering the basics:

    SIDS and kids safe sleeping brochure. And there is more on their website if you want to read up some more. 

    Safety – if you want to get a good understanding of product safety guidelines across the whole range of baby gear the place to go is Product Safety Australia

    Below are some great consumer websites - very informative and favourites of The Nursery Bird.

    Complimentary to kidspot.com.au, which I am certain you are already using as it is a great resource for all things baby, is a US site to check out thebump.com.  It also houses thenest.com which is a great household resource. I always try to find different sites or blogs which can provide more than one point of view on any given subject. I believe that the better informed you are about multiple points of view, the better the questions you will ask of your primary carers / helpers and the better prepared you will be if one approach doesn't work.  And it is important to understand that babies are all different.  Don’t be afraid or feel uncomfortable about asking lots of questions.

    One of my favourite sites to frequent since I started feeding my baby solids is Wholesome Baby Food. It’s a great resources – covering what to introduce and when, recipes and so on.  The only thing to watch out for – official guidelines on when to introduce allergenic foods to baby have changed – around 7 months is the new recommended age.  Beware - as with anything related to the health of your baby – check with your paediatrician or GP before starting any new foods.

        

    Tips & bits...Making space for baby

    You will need to create space for baby in more than just the nursery.  Baby has a multitude of needs, that will only expand as time goes on.