I knew I wouldn’t be able to stay away too long. Although I’ll admit it’s been quite nice not worrying about blogging the past few weeks. We’ve been keeping busy with school, hanging out with friends, family and soccer!
Yep, I’m a soccer mom 🙂 Except that The Love Nugget doesn’t really seem to be all that passionate about playing soccer. BUT, we didn’t put him in to win any awards or anything. Just learn about teamwork, sportsmanship, socialize and have fun! Which he’s doing.
In other news, he also lost a tooth, has discovered he LOVES to read on his own and can suddenly do the monkey bars. Pretty good too! He’s getting so grown up. Still my little love Nugget though 🙂
Speaking of getting so big, this little guy is almost 3 months…
He’s such a happy baby and we are so blessed to have him in our lives. He’s just a little nugget which is partially because I naturally don’t produce a ton of milk. At his two month, he weighed in at just 10 pounds which was only two pounds more than the 8 he weighed at birth. The doctor was far from concerned though and said he looked very healthy. He also said it’s natural for moms who don’t produce a lot of milk to have babies that are on the smaller side until they start eating solids. As long as he’s happy and growing, he’s fine. The Love Nugget was also on the smaller side the first few months so I’m not very concerned about it. As he starts demanding more, I’ll start giving him him some of the milk I have stored up in the freezer so we won’t have to do formula just yet. However, when that time comes there are some more natural options I’ve been looking into. For now, things are going pretty good. At least they are MUCH better than with The Love Nugget. Is it easy? No, breastfeeding is far from easy. However, I feel like it is leaps and bounds better than it was the first time. There’s no tears (at least from me), I have several ounces stored up in the freezer for date nights and when we have to start supplementing and I feel like I have a little better supply than I did with The Love Nugget.
Here’s a few things I think are helping to make it all around better this time.
Immediate skin to skin contact – With The Love Nugget, we didn’t get to do skin to skin contact because he was whisked away to the NICU. So this was a huge necessity for me with Little Squish. Luckily, he was perfectly healthy and I was able to spend a good few hours with him on my chest. Even after he was cleaned off, we left him in only his diaper and continued a lot of skin to skin for the duration of our hospital stay. Following that we did skin to skin whenever possible at home as well. I truly think this helped to get us started on a good path for breastfeeding as well as really bond right away.
Relax – With The Love Nugget I was so tense. I tried to relax but because we struggled with breastfeeding and he was a fussy baby, I felt like I was constantly tense. I can remember holding him to my breast with him screaming and not latching while tears rolled down my face. This time I just feel so much more relaxed about everything that even when he’s crying or not really latching on I’m able to soothe him without getting so tense it effects our experience.
Eat enough calories – With The Love Nugget, I had no idea the impact that limited calories could have on breast milk. I thought my body would just make the milk I needed to feed him no problem. Boy was I wrong! I reduced my calories to such a limited amount that my milk supply tanked and we had to start supplementing with formula after just a few months. This time I’m making sure to take in enough calories and watch my supply closely. My body naturally doesn’t produce a ton of milk so I have to be careful about eating enough. Do do this I track my food intake into My Fitness Pal and follow the 21 Day Fix nutrition guide to ensure I’m not only getting enough calories, but also getting enough of the correct food groups.
Massage, massage, massage – When I met with a lactation consultant after Little Squish was born, she said the number one thing that will help increase production is to massage your breasts. I had done this before with The Love Nugget but mostly just when I was pumping. So this time around I’ve been massaging when pumping, massaging when nursing, and massaging through the day when I can.
Don’t be shy – With The Love Nugget I was very concerned about what people would think if I was breastfeeding in public. I didn’t want to make anyone uncomfortable so I would often bring a bottle with him wherever I went. This meant there were times that I should have been nursing but I was bottle feeding instead. Which as I now know, can drastically decrease your supply. Now I almost never take a bottle out and about with me. Instead I just cover up and feed him when he’s hungry.
Lactation foods – Fenugreek, nutritional yeast, flaxseed meal and oats are my best friend these days. I put them in smoothies, take them in capsule form, and create all sorts of yummy recipes like these Peanut Butter Lactation Bars.
- 1 1/2 cups dry Old Fashioned Oats
- 1/2 cups Peanut Butter
- 1/4 cups shredded unsweetened coconut
- 2 tbsp Flaxseed Meal
- 1 tbsp. Nutritional Yeast Seasoning
- 2 tbsp, Honey
- 2-3 tbsp. water (more if needed)
- 2 scoop, Vanilla Shakeology Scoop
- 1/4 cup Dark Chocolate Chips
- 1/2 tsp. coconut oil
- In a large bowl or stand mixer, combine all ingredients except chocolate chips and coconut oil. Mix until a sticky mixture forms. Add more water if needed. Press into a parchment lined 8x8 pan. In a microwave on medium, melt chocolate chips and coconut oil. Pour over the oat mixture and spread evenly. Place in the fridge for 1 hour then cut into bars and store in the fridge until ready to enjoy.
- Per 16 bars
- Calories 153 Fat 10 Carbs 13 Protein 5
When I’m good at taking my supplements, eating my lactation foods and staying hydrated, I definitely notice a big difference in my daily supply. So I always make sure to have the above lactation bars or something similar in the fridge ready to go for a healthy, breastfeeding friendly snack.
I’d love to hear what some of your tips or tricks are for helping with your breastfeeding journey!