Posts tagged Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding Foe’s: Mastitis and Plugged Ducts, My Experience

PART 2:  The Second Time Around – New Challenges

Ok, so I will warn you, this is REALLY long!  I tried real hard to condense it but I wasn’t very successful.  So read on if you like!  It is very interesting in the end though!

When I found out we were expecting our second, I didn’t think twice about the decision to breastfeed, it was a given.  I also thought it would be much easier this time.  I thought I could prevent any mastitis/plugged duct issues by using the hand pump if I had some engorgement in the first weeks.  I felt confidant that I knew what I was doing the second time around.  I had both a hand and electric pump, plenty of breast cold packs if needed, and Greg made sure to check Walt after birth for any vertebral fixations/subluxations and soft tissue inflammation to ensure he would be comfortable nursing on both sides and to avoid the problem Jack had.

However, it wasn’t that simple.  Nursing was going pretty well the first few days, then, when my milk came in, just like with Jack, I had quite a bit of engorgement.  At least I knew what it was this time and some methods to try to control it.  Although, I wasn’t expecting the engorgement to be so bad the second time around.  I thought my body would know what to do by now.  I think some women, me included, just produce A LOT of milk!  However, I did find out later there was another variable this time causing the problem (keep reading to find out what).


During these early days of milk and engorgement I tried to nurse as often as I could but Walt was very sleepy all the time.  It was hard to keep him alert as often as I needed him to nurse.  I  also tried not allowing Walt to sleep long periods without nursing.  Well, I did allow him to go 4 hours at night (this kid wanted to sleep and after 2 yrs of sleep deprivation with Jack I really didn’t want to interrupt that) yet I didn’t want mastitis either but I thought 4 hours would be ok at night.   I tried to nurse on both sides at each feeding.   I mistakenly cut him off  early on the first side and switched sides for fear he would fall asleep and not nurse on the 2nd side.  I was using the hand pump a little to relieve some pressure but I didn’t use it to empty my breasts completely (mistake again).  I also tried hand expressing in the shower and using cold pack’s to decrease inflammation and prevent inflamed ducts.  However, I was a milk producing machine and my efforts could not keep the engorgement under control.  I felt like Walt was latching on alright and to me, appeared to be sucking the same as Jack did (although that was 3 yrs ago).  I didn’t think the problem was Walt.  Also, he didn’t have trouble being uncomfortable while nursing thanks to Daddy’s adjustments.

I was getting desperate though.  The engorgement was getting out of control very quickly despite my efforts and experience. I talked to my midwives and told them I was struggling with the engorgement.  Abby gave me several articles on different nursing techniques and info on mastitis and plugged ducts all from La Leche League.  It was great to have so much info but it was a little overwhelming because I didn’t know which of the many tips to try first, but it was all great info to have! (I will share some more of that in a future post).  It reaffirmed I was doing some things right, a few things I needed to change and it gave me new techniques to try for relief of the engorgement.  I did try some of the suggestions in the articles but continued to be engorged.  I was really worried I would end up with a fever and the whole cascade of symptoms that followed with Jack.  I had already started to get a small headache, the first sign I had with mastitis with Jack. Midwife Kelley then suggested calling Jessica Buell, a lactation consultant-in-training (and apprentice midwife, and doula – lady of many talents).  I was feeling VERY desperate by the time I called her, and probably hormonal and emotional from just having given birth less than a week prior.  She was fabulous on the phone.  She listened, asked me questions, then gave me a regimen to follow for 24 hours then I was to check back in with her.   I felt so much better after talking to Jessica.  I think the 24 hr. regimen gave me a focus and she seemed very confidant in it on the phone which made me feel confidant and a little more in control of things.  I followed her  instructions exactly and started to feel some relief.  I checked in with Jessica the next day and she modified my regimen slightly for the next 24 hours (I was better but still over-producing milk).  By the third day I felt back in control, engorgement was nearly gone and Jessica gave me some tip’s to continue doing and said to call if I had a future problem.  I was SOOOOO thankful to have avoided mastitis, fever, aches, ect.


A week or 2 passed and then it started again, UGH!!!  I know many moms out there would love to be overproducing so I shouldn’t complain so much.  I woke up in the middle of the night with mild engorgement (yep, Walt was sleeping through the night woo hoo!). I immediately got up and pumped, emptied my breasts and felt much better and went back to bed.  I thought it wouldn’t be a problem since I pumped as soon as I noticed the mild engorgement.  Well, I have a really sensitive system apparently!  The next evening, even thought the engorgement was gone, I started to get a headache and slight fever this time, Whaaat?!  One little mild engorgement and I was proud of myself for pumping right away…I did not expect this at all!  I wasn’t even engorged anymore after pumping but I still was having the familiar unpleasant symptoms.  I immediately went back to Jessica’s 24 hr regimen she gave me a few weeks prior (I should have called her).  I continued this for several days but continued to feel worse.  I thought there was no use calling her since I already had what I thought was mastitis and couldn’t prevent it anymore, it was here.  Well, that was a bad idea, should have called her.  Should have looked up natural remedies, should have asked friends.  I wasn’t thinking and gave up too soon.  I figured it would just go away after a week like the episodes I had with Jack.  I started taking ibuprofen to reduce the fever which was going on 7 days now.  I REALLY did not want to take any medication while nursing.  I felt defeated and desperate.  But I wanted to avoid an antibiotic even more so I tried the ibuprofen.  It did control the fever but any time I tried to get off of it the fever was right back there.  Man, this thing was stubborn.  And all along I should have called Jessica, don’t know what I was thinking.  By day 11, still with a fever and been on ibuprofen for way too long in my opinion, I did finally contact Jessica.  I didn’t give her a fair chance at helping me by calling her so late in in the game.  But she tried and gave me a regime to follow.  I did but I think it was just too late. I also gathered some tips from friends at this point too and tried lecithin supplements (supposed to possibly thin out the milk) and Poke Root Salve, but neither helped me (you will learn why if you continue reading).  By 14 days straight with a fever and completely worn out, Jessica and I  decided I had to go to the doc for an antibiotic.  I was extremely disappointed that I had to do this but it was necessary.  I actually hadn’t taken an antibiotic in 8 years, which I was very proud of!  It killed me to make that appointment and drive to the doctor’s office.  I was so mad at myself and I felt HORRIBLE that Walt would be exposed to an antibiotic at such a young age but I also had no choice at this point.  I did not expect to be in this position being what I thought, a breastfeeding veteran.  I took the antibiotic and the fever and symptoms improved in a day or 2.  I did wonder if they would have improved anyway without the antibiotic but I was just torturing myself by thinking that way.  I did need it after 14 days of a fever, maybe should have gone in a little sooner.


I was so confused as to why I was having so many problems.  I felt like I was doing everything right by now and didn’t understand how one mild engorgement could lead to 14 straight days with a fever and mastitis/plugged duct.   About 1-2 weeks after taking the antibiotic it was deja vu!  How on Earth could this be possible, I was incredibly annoyed!  Again, I woke one night with very mild engorgement and a day later the dreaded headache followed by fever a few hours later.  I went back to the frequent nursing and Icing, pumping when needed and gave it a day or 2 before I called in the troops.  I emailed Jessica to tell her it was starting again.  I told her exactly what was going on and shared my frustration, wondering why I continue to have problems despite following all the recommendations.  I also mentioned to her that at Walt’s postpartum midwife visit, we were told he may be borderline Tongue Tied.

Tongue tie can be defined as a structural abnormality of the lingual frenum.   When the frenum is normal, it is elastic and does not interfere with the movements of the tongue in sucking, eating, clearing food off the teeth in preparation for swallowing and, of course, in speech. When it is short, thick, tight or broad it has an adverse effect on oromuscular function, feeding and speech. It can also cause problems when it extends from the margin of the tongue and across the floor of the mouth to finish at the base of the teeth.” –

Our midwives weren’t too concerned because Walt appeared to be nursing fine and was WAY ahead of the game in the weight gaining department.  Most babies with tongue tie have A LOT of trouble nursing and gaining weight.  They did suggest we talk to Dr. Hazelbaker (more about her below) or our pediatrician about it.  We planned to ask our pediatrician to look at his tongue at his appointment in a few weeks.  In the mean time we also Asked 2 dentists and both took a look and said it looked mild at worst and probably wouldn’t need treated.  Jessica responded and recommended the same regimen that helped before but also suggested I schedule an appointment with Dr. Alison Hazelbaker, PhD, a lactation consultant who does lymphatic drainage, and happens to be an expert on the condition of Tongue Tie.  She also is a CranioSacral Therapist.  I promptly contacted Dr. Hazelbaker and scheduled an appointment for Monday.  It was friday and Dr. Hazelbaker was kind enough to give me her cell phone number in case I ran into problems over the weekend before my appointment (which I did).  Despite the icing and frequent nursing my fever was climbing Saturday evening.  I took a hot shower to calm the body chills I was getting and that hot shower really spiked the fever, 104.2!  I typically like to let fever’s run their course.  The body is smart and creates a fever for a purpose – to kill an infection.  But this was a bit high for my liking (damage can start to occur above 105 deg).  I took 2 Ibuprofen but the fever was still holding strong.  I wanted to take a cold bath (well didn’t really want to but needed to) but just my luck, a thunderstorm was in our area so that was out.  I could have called my doctor but it was Saturday evening and I figured they would just have a recording saying something to the effect of “In case of emergency call 911, otherwise call back during business hours”, neither of which I thought sounded good.  I decided to take a 3rd Ibuprofen and started icing my neck and groin areas where a lot of superficial blood vessels exist.  It appeared to be working because I was starting to sweat!  Within 20 minutes the fever was down below 102 and dropping, wheeew!  I was so glad when Monday finally arrived and I could get to my appointment.  Dr. Hazelbaker was great!  Right away she noticed a very deep plugged duct.  She did a lymphatic drainage technique and I could feel immediate relief!  She also observed me nursing Walt and gave me some tips on how to hold him so he stays latched on (I didn’t even realize he wasn’t staying on appropriately).  She then checked Walt with her own Tongue Tie Assessment method (Assessment Tool for Lingual Frenulum Function (ATLFF)) and determined he was Tongue Tied.

Tongue Tied

Photo from

There was a definitive deficit in the function and range of motion of his tongue, despite his tongue appearance not scoring too bad.  This is why we weren’t in a hurry to get his tongue looked at initially.  2 dentists and 2 midwives, 4 practitioners had looked at his tongue already and it appeared to be mild tongue tie if that.  They all had seen much worse cases with many more obvious symptoms so Walt’s was tricky and not that obvious even to a trained eye.  Dr. Hazelbaker has done extensive studies on this condition including writing a book.  She concluded the Tongue Tie was not allowing Walt to suck appropriately and he was unable to empty those deeper ducts causing the frequent plugged ducts and all of my symptoms.  She mentioned it could also cause him to have large belches and increased drooling, both of which I had noticed – some monster burps and drooling at 10 weeks like a teething baby!  It all made sense and I was relieved to finally know what was causing all the engorgement.  If left untreated it could cause speech problems in the future. The solution was simple, to have his tongue clipped.  It was a vary simple procedure and was quick and painless (for Walt, but harder for me watching).  He is now 4 months and we haven’t had a problem sense!  I hope to write more about tongue tie and the clipping procedure in the future.  I am so grateful to have figured out the cause of my nursing challenges and to have it all taken care of now.  Thanks to Jessica for all of her help and Dr. Hazelbaker for her expertise and care, and of course to our wonderful midwives who gave me info and directed me Jessica and Dr. H.

Lessons Learned – Quick tips if you are getting engorged

  1. Before giving birth, find a lactation consultant to have incase you need help.  Ask them questions before birth and don’t be afraid to call them if you have a question. 
  2. Nurse often if – every 2 hours – 24 hours/day when engorgement is bad
  3. Completely empty one side before switching to the second
  4. If needed, pump to get both sides emptied
  5. Ice your breasts if you have signs of inflammation/plugged ducts/mastitis i.e. redness, heat, hard nodules, pain, swelling.  Intense icing 15 minutes EVERY hour may be needed for 24-48 hours or longer
  6. Anti-inflammatory such as ibuprofen may be needed.
  7. Monitor your temperature
  8. Lymphatic drainage works!  Find a practitioner in your area if you get plugged ducts
  9. If your baby might be Tongue Tied have it checked out sooner rather than later.  (some cases can look mild but still be problematic!)



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Breastfeeding Foe’s: Mastitis and Plugged Ducts

PART 1 – Be More Prepared than I was!

First of all, I have so many experiences to share with you on this topic that it was getting WAY too long for one post so I had to split it up (and probably will have many more to come)!  And, before I start, you should know I am a huge fan of breastfeeding!  I think it’s sad that so many moms out there either don’t do it or stop after a short time.  This post is not intended to scare anyone away from breastfeeding but to help you be better prepared for challenges than I was.  I hope this post will help prepare moms-to-be and help those who have had similar troubles to get through them successfully.  I nursed Jack about 26 months (my initial goal was 12 months).  I am now nursing my 2nd baby, Walt, who is 3 months old.

After Jack, my first born, I had 3 uncomfortable and frustrating bouts of what I thought was mastitis.  Breastfeeding was something I knew I wanted to do and would do but I just thought you put baby to breast and voila, thats it.  I didn’t read up on the topic, techniques, didn’t ask anyone for tips or advice on breastfeeding while I was pregnant.   I didn’t know anything about how to hold baby, what engorgement was, mastitis, that it could be challenging.  I think I just thought breastfeeding, you just do it and thats that.  I didn’t expect it to be hard or to run into any problems.

So when Jack was born, I tried to let him nurse right away, which he wasn’t interested in at first but an hour after birth he figured it out.  The first few days were a piece of cake.   It might sound weird but I was excited for my milk to come in.  It was all very intriguing to me, everything that was happening with my body related to pregnancy, birth and now breastfeeding.  It was empowering and amazing to me how my body would produce nourishing food, milk, that my baby would thrive on exclusively for some time and I was eager for it to come in and to nurse my baby boy!  However, when my milk did come in it was chaos!  Jack started becoming partial to the left side and avoided the right like the plague!  We later discovered it was due to his C1 vertebrae being fixed and tissue around it inflamed and it was easily corrected by chiropractic adjustments (by mom and dad).  This lead to engorgement.  All of the sudden my right breast just got huge.  I thought I was going to explode!  It became very painful.  I did have an electric pump and figured, that must be what those things are for!  Pumping gave me some temporary relief.  However I didn’t know anything about pumping either.  I don’t think I completely emptied the breast.  I just continued to pump when I started to get huge and painful again and did that repeatedly (it took a day or 2 to figure out why Jack wouldn’t nurse on my right side and to get it corrected).  The frequent pumping with my electric pump seemed to cause me to just produce more (supply and demand) and I was really getting fed up and could not get things under control for the life of me!  At our postpartum visit with our CHOICE midwives they suggested a hand pump (which they had several available in their awesome resource room) and to have Jack nurse on both sides each feeding and to nurse often.  I WAS only feeding Jack on one side per feeding (don’t know why, I guess I just thought that was how it was done and don’t know where that thought came from) and if he fell asleep for long periods (he only did that the first few days, then I don’t think he slept a full night until 2 yrs old!) I didn’t wake him to nurse.  So I would go sometimes 6+hours before nursing on one side, ya, no wonder I had problems!  Like I said, I knew nothing about techniques or protocol for breastfeeding.  Hint, hint, if you’r pregnant get advice, read, go to La Leche League website to get info BEFORE your baby is born.

After Jack was adjusted and willing to nurse on both sides and once I started nursing on both sides each feeding, nursing about every 2 hours, icing to reduce inflammation, and using the hand pump to relieve pressure if he didn’t empty both sides everything cleared up.  By everything I mean the flu-like symptoms I experienced including: fever, head ache, body ache, and extreme fatigue.  These symptoms came on shortly after the initial major engorgement I experienced.  I was never checked out by a doctor or lactation consultant to determine if it was a plugged duct or mastitis but whatever it was, it was resolved within a week thankfully (no meds required).  I had a similar experience 2 more times while breastfeeding Jack.  Both of which I believe followed weekend trips I made in which I had to bring my pump and not my baby.  I really felt that electric pump caused an increase in demand and therefore supply followed by engorgement and the rest of those “fun” symptoms.  While each episode I experienced was not fun at all, they all did manage to resolve themselves in about a week by nursing often, using the hand pump and icing when my breasts felt hot and sore.  I also did go to a few local La Leche League meetings.  It was nice to be around other nursing moms, many with years of experience.  I enjoyed talking with them and listening to their advice.  The rest of the 26 months of breastfeeding Jack went very smoothly!

Come back soon for Part 2:  The Second Time Around – New Challenges-  I thought it would be easier but new challenges presented themselves.  Come back to learn what they were!

I am also planing more posts on the benefits of breastfeeding, what exactly is mastitis and plugged ducts, natural remedies, and more!  So don’t forget to subscribe so don’t miss a post!

What challenges have you faced while breastfeeding and what did you do?

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Pumping in Vegas

I’m back at the Las Vegas airport where I access free internet!  To log on in our hotel it was going to be $14/day, or $8 for 15 min. in the business center… whatever happened to free wireless in hotels?  I think everyone really enjoyed Angie’s Bachelorette weekend get-a-way.  With my breast pump in tote I have almost made it through my first weekend away from Jack, hopefully without any mastitis.  It was a little strange carrying it around everywhere I went, and pumping in the nightclub bathroom, that was interesting, with the base booming in the background.  Everyone arrived by lunchtime Friday.  We checked out a Mexican restaurant connected to our hotel.  It was great food but pricy, but that’s Vegas.  We relaxed in the hotel for a while then went to a really cool dueling piano bar.  I’m not much of a bar person but I do enjoy the great music and entertainment at piano bars.  Saturday we enjoyed sleeping in and then hit the shops and checked out some of the casino resorts.  We had a great lunch at Caesars Palace then headed back to the room to get ready for Angie’s big night out.  When all the girls had their hair curled and heels on we kicked the night off with a riming story, “Angie’s Party in Vegas”.  We recapped night one and plotted night too, with small gifts for her to open as part of our story.  By the end of the poem she had some nice gifts and was decked out in the ultimate bachelorette attire.  We went to 2 clubs, both really cool.  We were such a great looking bunch that we got free admission and drinks at both.  I headed back early with Angie’s future mother and sister – law since I’m not the night owl that the others are, but it was a great time.  Not much gambling though, maybe next time. 

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Viva Las Vegas!!

Its 9:30 am Eastern Time and I am on the plane heading to Las Vegas for the weekend for my sister, Angie’s Bachelorette party.  This is my first time being away from Jack.  I’m a little nervous but also looking forward to a great weekend get-a-way.  Daddy will be texting me cute pictures of Jack all weekend!  As I was nursing this morning I was a little sad that I wouldn’t see him for 3 full days.  It may not sound like long to the average person but if you’re a new mom I’m sure you can relate with me when I sounds like eternity!  I have been storing up breast milk since July, waking up late at night here and there to pump.  I should have plenty now.  Jack is still nursing about 6 times a day, some days 8 times.  He’s also eating 2 solid meals, a larger breakfast and smaller lunch.  Although, this past week he’s been turning his nose up to his usual favorites.  I’m thinking maybe his gums are bothering him.  Still no teeth yet, but it can’t be too far away. 


I should arrive in Vegas in another 2 hours.  I will be meeting my sisters Angie and Erica, cousin Ashley, Angie’s future mother and sister in-law, and her friends Nicole and Ali.  There may be more but that’s all I can remember right now.  It should be a great weekend, hopefully not too crazy.  I’m not really the crazy type J.  I will update the blog later in my trip.  Until then, have a great weekend! 

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Monday for Moms: Breastfeeding Challenges

Breastfeeding is the most natural feeding method for your baby but not always the easiest.  I would like to share the first challenge I encountered with Jack and how we got through it.   Within the first hour or two of birth, after several attempts, Jack started to get the hang of latching on.  However, by Jack’s second or third day of life we started to have a problem with nursing.  Jack would only feed on one side.  I couldn’t figure out why every time I tried to feed him on the right, he was so restless.  He would latch on then push off and latch on and push off and cry over and over again.  Then I would switch to the let and he would nurse without incident.  So my husband pulled out our pediatric textbooks from Chiropractic College and started flipping through looking for breastfeeding problems.  Sure enough he stumbled upon something!  And I was very glad because with Jack only nursing on the left, it didn’t take long before I started having problems with engorgement (which I can discuss in a future post).  What my husband found, is something we both suspected.  Birth is a traumatic process and a baby’s neck can easily be jostled while being squeezed, pushed, and pulled through the birth canal and out.  Dr. Greg read that a misalignment of the first cervical vertebra in the neck can cause discomfort for a baby and interfere with breastfeeding.  So while I held Jack in my lap, Dr. Daddy examined his neck, using several chiropractic maneuvers and moving it through different ranges of motion.  He found that Jack had difficulty and discomfort when laterally bending his head to the right.  So as I held Jack in my lap, Dr. Daddy gently performed a chiropractic adjustment.  Immediately he whipped his head around like a horse being released from the gate at the Kentucky Derby!  Jack could turn and bend his head without difficulty or crying!  Excited, I quickly brought him to me to nurse and he gulped down a large meal! 


A few days later, the problem seemed to remerge so we did the same exam and adjustment and Jack was good to go again.  After a total of 3 treatments, Jack has not had any more problems breastfeeding.  He is almost 7 months now and nursing like a champ!  I was so amazed and ecstatic with the power of the chiropractic adjustment for my baby.  If you are a breastfeeding mom who’s had nursing troubles or engorgement issues then you can relate to what a relief it is to have your baby nursing successfully!

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Monday for Moms: My Favorite Baby Necessities

 Today I’m starting a regular column, Monday for Moms with tips, experiences and helpful information for moms!  I will also be starting another regular posting later this week called Greener Future Friday where I will focus more on tips and information on living a toxin-free, environmentally friendly life!

The first Monday for Moms:  My Favorite Baby Necessities.  When I was pregnant I had no idea what I would need when my baby arrived.  There are so many baby products in the stores.  A first time mom can be easily overwhelmed and frustrated walking through a store like Baby’s “R” Us.   Today I would like to share the top babygear I could not live without during my first 6 months as a mom.  Here they are in no specific order:

Breastfeeding cover

Breastfeeding cover

Breast feeding Cover

This is a MUST HAVE for breastfeeding moms!!  I use my cover daily!  It’s perfect if you are feeding your baby in public or if you have company in your home.  I take my cover with me everywhere and as a modest woman, I never have to worry if Jack gets hungry! To order one email:

Breast pump – I use my pump on a regular basis.  In the first few weeks I used a manual pump  when I had problems with engorgement.  As a working mom my pump now comes in handy for storing spare milk for times when I have a babysitter or have to go out of town (which isn’t too often).   I know use an electrical pump  by Medela.

Baby Carrier – Jack loves his baby carrier’s.  His favorite is the Baby Bjorn.  He enjoyed facing me or my husband when he was a few weeks old. As his eye sight developed he really enjoyed (and still does) facing outward.  It gives him a great view of the world, and gives me free hands to do some things around the house.  Jack loves going for walks in his Baby Bjorn even more than he does in a stroller!  We found a gently used Baby Bjorn for a great price at Once upon a child.  Jack also enjoys various baby slings.  Although I find the Baby Bjorn more comfortable for my back.

Cloth Diapers – I am a big fan of cloth diapers.  They are great for the environment, very economical, and there are many different types to choose from.  They are also better for preventing diaper rash than disposable diapers.  I have also read that cloth diaper babies typically become potty trained sooner than babies using disposable diapers.  I often hear mom’s complain about putting so much money into diapers every week but with cloth diapers you don’t have that regular expense.  There is more cost upfront however.  My favorite cloth diaper is bum genius.  The are an AIO (all in one) with adjustments for babies from 7-35lbs.  They have a waterproof outer layer and a fleece inner lining to wick fluid from your baby’s skin.  They come with 2 absorbent cloths that go between the inner and outer layers.  They have velcro tabs for a snug fit.  They are very easy to use, even for dad’s!  I will have more in-depth posts in the future on cloth diapering.

Swaddle Blanket/Sleep Sack – This was a favorite for sleeping during Jack’s first 3 months.  Swaddle blankets helped snuggle him tight and kept him warm and snug in bed without worrying about loose blankets which can put a baby at risk for SIDS.  My favorite Swaddle blanket is Halo SleepSack.  It is a wearable blanket with a velcro band to swaddle your baby tight.  This was the only one I found with the adjustable band.  Other swaddle blankets I found Jack was able to squirm out of but not this one!  By far our favorite!  Unfortunately I could not find one in a larger size with the adjustable band, so we bought larger sized sleep sacks and used our original band as he grew.

Swing – These are a life saver for Greg and I.  When first trying to get Jack to sleep through the night we were not very successful using the crib.  He always seemed to startle himself awake throughout the night.  One night when we were all exhausted Greg and I fell asleep downstairs on the couch with Jack in his swing.  When I woke up 11 hours later, still on the couch with Greg, and Jack still asleep in his swing we decided to move the swing to Jack’s bedroom and let him sleep in the swing until he gets used to sleeping through the night.  The swing forms the perfect cuddling pouch for Jack and the soothing motion puts him right back to sleep when he startles himself awake.  Jack’s favorite swings are Fisher Price Papasan Swing and Baby Einstein Discover & Play Swing

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Today Jack ate his first food, avocado!

Jack's First Food, Avacado!

Jack's First Food, Avocado!

He really enjoyed it!  He didn’t seem to notice it was any different than breast milk.  It was a lot of fun watching him during this milestone!  Greg and I enjoyed every moment of it this morning.  He not only enjoyed the avocado but really liked chewing on his bowl.  I went with Boon Inc., on my friend Dolly’s recommendation for baby dishes/utensils (check out her blog for more info).

I knew before I was pregnant that I wanted to make my own baby food.  I have been reading the book Super Baby Food by Ruth Yaron as a resource on homemade baby food and tips for the first meal.    Making your own baby food is great.  It gives you control over what he eats and doesn’t eat and it is very economical.  I plan on avoiding when at all possible processed, caned, preservative-filled baby food.  Today I mashed up 1Tbs of avocado in my BPA/Phthalate-Free Kidco BabySteps Manual Food Mill.  I used one whole organic avocado and stored the left over in my BabySteps Freezer tray.  We fed him first with our fingers then tried the spoon.  He didn’t mind either method.  It was so funny to see him with green avocado smeared on his face and hands… it made me think ahead to many days and probably several years of food everywhere!

Jack will be 6 months on Saturday and until today I have been exclusively breastfeeding him!  I am a huge advocate of breastfeeding, and plan to continue breastfeeding Jack for at least 12 months.  (I have a lot to talk about when it comes to breastfeeding so I’ll save that for another post.)  I will also go more in-depth later as to why we chose avocado for the first meal.

Dr. H

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