How to Give a Bottle

images-1Giving a breastfed baby a bottle can excruciatingly painful for both you and the baby.  Here are some tips, for bottle feeding either formula or breastmilk.

1.  The bottle does matter. You decide on glass or plastic.  The important part of finding a good bottle is finding one that doesn’t leak! Leaking bottles are ineffective, messy and wasteful of good pumped milk.  Dr. Brown’s bottle are my favorite, I’ve tried a variety of other bottles including, Evenflo, Avent, Playtex, etc., Playtex bottles are the worst, they leak horribly.

2. Size Matters, kind of: If the bottle you’re getting comes with different nipple sizes make sure to get the appropriate one for your baby. Infants should have a size one, this part refers to the hole of the nipple, and how easily the milk will flow out.

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Flow can also be most effectively regulated by the adult giving the bottle.  Consider the base and actual protruding nipple size.  You might want to try to match the bottle nipple to that of the mothers nipple.  If the baby is used to a small nipple from mom, a huge nipple from the bottle will likely gag your baby.

3. Baby Position: Baby can be in varying positions but most commonly in the cradle hold.  The difference being that the baby should be seated up a little more rather than lying in the traditional cradle hold.  With bottle babies naturally take in more air, its best for them to be more upright.

For the first few feedings it might be best to turn the baby away from your chest, just slightly so she doesn’t try to root, which will only frustrate her.

Try: Cradle hold, baby upright at 45 degree angle, and slightly turned away from the chest.

4. Don’t shove the bottle in her mouth.  Tickle your babies lips with the nipple of the bottle, and when she opens her mouth only put part of the nipple in. She will suck in the rest of the nipple when she is ready-let her guide herself, she knows what she’s doing!

5. Bottle Angle.  Contrary to popular belief, avoid turning the bottle straight down so the milk fills up the whole nipple. This causes milk to poor out of the nipple which is likely to frustrate your baby because she is getting more than she can swallow. Keep the bottle basically horizontal (depending on how full it is) so that only half of the nipple fills with milk. This way your baby has to work a little for the milk she gets. This is especially important if your baby is also breastfeeding because getting milk from the breast can be more work for her than getting it from a free flowing silicone nipple.It’s important to keep her sucking consistent so she doesn’t lose her sucking technique and doesn’t begin to prefer bottle over breast (unlikely scenario). The horizontal angle also helps to prevents milk from pouring out of her mouth and from her gagging.

 

I Love You Through and Through: A+

Unknown-2I Love You Through and Through, written by Bernadette Rossetti-Shustak is a lovely, sweet book that everyone should own.  It’s simply about unconditional love, e.g.,  “I love your happy side, I love your sad side.”

How to hold a Breastfeeding baby for caregivers and spouses

Holding a breastfeeding infant can be a challenge for anyone other than the breastfeeding mom. We want to hold babies close to our bodies partially because instinct tells us this is right, and also because of typical media images.  Baby books, TV shows and movies all show us the two typical ways to hold babies.  One hold makes baby happy (cradle hold) and one sad (out, away from body.) The latter hold is always performed by the unknowing, un-maternal/paternal adult holding a baby straight out, arms fully extended away from their body, and the baby hovering in the air hysterical.

But, what if a less dramatic version of the out-and-away hold is actually better, less upsetting and confusing for the baby?

The reason the cradle, hug-baby-in, hold doesn’t always work for breastfeeding infants is simply because they associate that hold, the closeness of it with breastfeeding. So, instead of the baby becoming calm, she may instead begin to root images-1(beginning signs she wants to eat) and unless you’re also giving bottles you can’t soothe her in the way she wants.  Instead a modified football hold might be best. [Elbow at your side, baby laying longways on your arm, and arm extended out.]

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Signs baby is rooting and therefore likely to become upset with the non-breastfeeding adult:

-Trying to lick or suck on your arm, chest, neck…anywhere.

-Burrowing into your chest, arm.

-Baby rubs hand on your chest/breast.

-Crying when diaper is dry, and has recently slept.

Sometimes infants are perfectly content in the cradle position, but usually only for a limited time. I try to hold b.f. infants in the modified football hold, very high up on my shoulder, and on my legs, while sitting.

Next time you have a fussy infant, and you see any of the rooting signs try changing your hold, so that the baby is away from your chest. If the baby has recently eaten, you’ll find she will likely immidiately be calmed once away from your chest.

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Pink Guns

UnknownSemi-new action toys have come out, and they’re pink.  The color pink has become controversial in its own right, but throwing weaponry into the mix brings up a whole new set of dialogue, “Why pink? Why weapons? Should girls and boys be playing out aggression? Are weapons bad? Are pink weapons bad? Is aggression good?…” Where I live, most parents are anti-fake weapon play.  The mere pointing of a stick with the added “pow-pow” nearly brings parents to tears, likely fearing this role-play is somehow indicative of their parenting and the adult their kid will grow up to be.  I am not apart of this mode of thinking. Kids role-play all sorts of things, they pretend to be a dog or a turtle, and yet we don’t fear children will grow up to have be “furries” or “plushies”. cc_subculture_lead_130220_wmain Nerf Rebelle Heartbreaker Exclusive Golden Edge Bow by Hasbro is being talked about simply because it’s pink.  Toy weaponry is old hat. The focal point of the new weaponry toys is that they’re pink.  Nerf guns have been around for years, in varying blues, oranges, greens and blacks, and while Nerf guns have suffered some criticism revolving around the presumed aggression, or warfare the gun may promote, I can assure you the criticism never once revolved around the color.  Unknown-1 So why now? Why does pink, and all things typically female create such cultural upheaval?  We all know the argument against pink, I’ve written about it before, i.e., “pink is bad, it upholds gender stereotyping and women’s oppression.” Or something like this. First of all, a color cannot do these things, that’s just absurd.  Second of all, we shouldn’t look at something that loosely represents an idea of “female”, and chastise it, we should embrace it and change whatever negative meaning it might have held. In order to progress, and continue equality among men we need to actually think that Women are equal, and not place blame on things like pink, makeup, tight clothes, etc., to each their own.  And while I don’t wear pink or know how to properly apply make-up, I also don’t think that these things in anyway represent, or are cause for women’s oppression. I urge you to think about this topic. Consider what the color pink and weaponry play means to you, and why.  Read the New York Times post I linked to about the new “girl” Nerf guns, written by Hilary Stout and Elizabeth A. Harris.  I’d love to see some comments about this topic!

Quinoa and Veggie Recipe

I’m not a great cook, hence the simplicity of this thrown together “recipe” but, it’s a staple I make for the child I watch.  I switch up the veggies depending on whats in the house.IMG_4094

1 cup quinoa

2 cups veggie broth (you can use water or chicken broth too)

Bring to boil, cover and simmer for 10-20 minutes, until liquid is absorbed.

Vegetables: I roast zucchini and sweet potatoes in light olive oil and saute spinach (great for an iron boost.)  Mix quinoa and veggies together and enjoy.

This Kind of Picky Eater is Made, Not Born: Motherlode

Sally Sampson writes about picky eaters for Motherlode.

“To answer my original questions: What is a picky eater? Is it someone who won’t taste new things? Yes. Someone who knows exactly what they like? No. Someone who loves the spotlight? Not initially but maybe later.

Are picky eaters made, not born? Yes, but with a caveat: Maybe it is just semantics. I don’t define a picky eater as someone who has food allergies or sensitivities, sensory issues or an honest dislike of a particular food. After all, I hate peanut butter so much I can’t be in a room with someone who eats it. Ditto boiled eggs. A picky eater is someone who won’t try new things and won’t give a rebuffed food a second chance. That kind of picky eater isn’t born — he’s made.”

Public Tantrums

I had the most amazingly traumatic public tantrum experience the other day.

Grand Central, Friday. Rush hour. And this…Unknown-2

I think people took pictures of my charge, laying there in the middle of Grand Central, refusing to walk or let me carry her.  She simply wanted to lay there, screaming, kicking and attempting to hit me. What did I do?  I let her lay there for 3 minutes and simply averted my eyes from the disgusted bystanders.

You don’t know  public tantrum’s until you’ve experienced one in the crowded city of New York.

For actual tips on avoiding, and coping with public tantrums read my post, Crying Babies and Screaming Adults.