Sunday, January 31, 2010

boobs, tits, knockers, breasts, milk, bags, jugs, fun balloons.......BOOBIES!

Boobs, tits, knockers, breasts, milk, bags, jugs, fun balloons..... what ever you call them as soon as you become a mother that's where everyone's focus seems to go. "Are you breastfeeding? Has your milk come in? Do your boobs hurt yet?" I have been guilty of asking new mums all of these questions after having a baby. When i ask i am only doing it as a loving gesture, i don't want to put pressure on anyone i care about BUT i do believe "breast is best"

I sparked some debate today and offended a few people with a quote i put on my blog today

"When we trust the makers of baby formula more than we do our own ability to nourish our babies, we lose a chance to claim an aspect of our power as women. Thinking that baby formula is as good as breastmilk is believing that thirty years of technology is superior to three million years of nature's evolution" -Christine Northrup M.D.

You can have a look at the whole lot here

Let me tell you about my experience with feeding my daughter. when she was first born she wouldn't latch properly no matter what i tried. I had HEAPS of milk, the midwives at the hospital were calling me a dairy cow, but she just wouldn't get hold of my nipple.
I was pawed at and touched and treated like a blob with boobies. I was told to hand express but not shown how to do it, my baby was starving and therefore not sleeping, so i wasn't sleeping and just felt crap! They weren't keen on letting me go home until i had our feeding issues sorted but i stood fast and was determined to go home where i would be more relaxed and less harassed at all hours by different faceless people holding a torch checking my blood pressure.
I was put on the midcall program, where a midwife would come to my home every day for up to 10 days until i was settled into motherhood.
As soon as i got home my mum took me out and bought me the best breast pump on the market and told me not to give up, if giggle girl wasn't going to feed from my breast she was going to get the next best thing.
(that was actually a very interesting shopping trip, my first time away from my baby and my milk was coming in BIG TIME! By the end of our hour at the shops (and 3 phone calls home to make sure she was OK, she slept the whole time luckily, I was becoming a crazy person. I was in so much pain i was sure my chest would rip open, i was tired grouchy and missing my baby. The guy walking in front of me was walking too slow and in the middle of the aisle so i couldn't get past so i politely told him to "move the F*UCK out of my way!" i then realised it was a very elderly man with a walking from and OXYGEN TANK!!....well didn't i feel like the scum of the earth!)

After getting the Medela in style advanced, I pumped every 3 hours, not only feeding her needs well and truly but also ending up with almost 20L of frozen mummy milk in my freezer.
I HATED pumping with a passion, it made me feel sick to the stomach, it felt unnatural and, for want of a better word, just downright YUCKY! But i stuck with it and when giggle girl was 6 weeks old we went to a lactation consultant for a day stay too see if she could help me, and low and behold my giggle girl latched perfectly first go and we were feeding! The lactation consultant was great, she showed me how to do it myself rather than doing it for me, she was patient and answered all and any questions i had about feeding and anything else that was worrying me at the time.

I fed in public, i was discreet about it but i wouldn't cover up. my child was entitled to have her lunch as much as anyone else and i dared anyone to comment. luckily for them, no one ever did, they would have been met with a very cranky mamma bear who didn't want to be treated like a leaper because of how i choose to feed my baby.

This was Not going to happen to me!

Then when giggle girl was about 5 months old i went to my uncle's wedding. As my mum was there i figured i could have a few drinks with hubby and mum would cherish the time with her only grand-child (the difficult part is getting mum to give her BACK!) so i had enough expressed breast milk to get me though the weekend so i didn't have to worry how many drinks i had already had and the alcohol in the breast milk etc etc. In the space of that weekend my supply dropped to almost zero and it didn't matter the number of feeds i did it wasn't picking up!
So giggle girl was given expressed milk for another 4 weeks or so and the we moved on to formula.

She was formula fed until she hit 12 months, then we switched to cows milk. it was only recently that a good friend mentioned to me that the patch of itchy, dry, rashy skin on her chest could be from lactose sensitivity, we switched to soy....she refused to drink it, so we swapped to lactose free cows milk, in two weeks her rash was gone! i would never have worked it our without other mummy advice!

So my reason for posting all these paragraphs of boring information on my daughters life in milk phases is not to send you off to sleep but to illustrate that i have done it ALL! So i cannot be called a hypocrite for what I'm about to say.

I just want to say that this isn't directed at women that for whatever reason are unable to breastfeed. And my heart goes out to those who were so very crushed that you couldn't. This is more directed at those who bottle feed for convenience or laziness or for fashionable reasons and for those who put women's breasts solely in the "sexy time" bracket.


Love and Smiles

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The 3 things that made a difference.

There are 3 things i can specifically pinpoint that made me a better parent and made me appreciate the little wonder i had created. I know that there are little things everyday but there are the big far.

1, My mum and dad.
My dad worked alot when i was a kid, i always thought that it was because he was a workaholic and he would rather be at work than at home. Its only since having my own family that i realised that he worked so hard to ensure that mum could stay home with my brother and I. Mum was a SAHM until my bother went to high school (he is the youngest) So i had the most brilliant childhood, i would come home from school to fresh baked bread or biscuits. We lived on a hobby farm, had our own chickens and a veggie garden and fruit trees. it was an idyllic location, exactly what i would love to provide for giggle girl. My mum was an attachment parent and extended breastfed both myself and my brother, all without knowing there was a term for it, she just did what felt right. Its any wonder that giggle girl loves her "narn and pa" more than anyone else (excluding her mum and dad of course......I hope...)

2, The YouTube video 99 balloons
(WARNING, video is a definite tearjerker! Be warned!)
The amazing parents of Elliot, who knowing that he wouldn't live very long took the time to document his 99 days on earth is the most beautiful heartwarming tribute to their son.
There is something the father says at 1:34 into it that had the most profound effect on me. He says its 11pm and mum is asleep and his feeding shift has begun (Elliot is tube fed every 3 hours and it takes 1.5hours at a time) and his shift finishes at 4:45am when mum takes back over again. The one line that hit me like a brick in the face is that "it's his favourite time of the day"
When giggle girl was born it was winter and we were living in an area that was VERY VERY cold (as far as Australian cold standards go). Even though we were co-bedding i was still resentful that i had to wake up and before i started breastfeeding properly i had to get up and get her a bottle of expressed breast milk. I wasn't happy about having my sleep interrupted and having to get up in the cold etc etc......until i watched this video and i realised how lucky i was to have a healthy child who was thriving. I realised that she relied on me for EVERYTHING and that i was turning into a "convenience mother" rather than the sort of parent that i wanted to be. From that moment on my prospective took a HUGE turn. I sat there bawling my eyes out at the computer looking at my beautiful baby girl making those silly sleeping baby faces as she slept in her rocker next to me, I vowed things would be different. I made my husband watch the video too so when thing seemed to be getting difficult to remember how lucky we are....(I'm sounding really preachy but it had a HUGE effect on me)

3, The loss of a friends child
A wonderful friend of mine had stillborn baby. I don't want to give any more details as its not my story to tell and i also want to protect her privacy. But it made me look at some of the mothers i saw hanging around the shopping centre one day i was there, and in the space of my hour shopping trip i saw a mother give her very young baby (under 6 months old) a bottle of orange juice, a mother shouting at her toddler that he was a "little d*ckhead" and a mum sitting next to a pram smoking while on her mobile while her baby cried. And it made me wonder why were these people given the chance to have healthy kids and my friend missed out? How was that fair?! It made me determined that i wasn't going to let ANYONE ever thing that i didn't deserve my child. I wanted to give giggle girl an extra special life to make up for the little life that missed out, and when i talk about an extra special life i don't mean filling it with "stuff and material possessions i mean filling it with joy and information and wonder.
This friend of mine is someone i would consider being a surrogate for.....if only i liked being pregnant!

I'm sure there will be many many more things that will happen in the years to come that make me realise how lucky i am and how appreciative i should be of my life and my beautiful giggle girl.

What has made you realise how blessed you really are?? I would love to hear your stories.

Love and Smiles

Friday, January 29, 2010

I love babywise??.......YOU SUCK!

I had my attention drawn to the "i love babywise" facebook page by the awesome chick behind woman uncensored. WTF!! that's all that came to mind whilst reading some of the posts on the discussion board.....are some of these so called mothers insane!! Although i would never claim to be the perfect mother by any stretch of the imagination, the intentions and actions expressed here are cruel and sound like things inflicted on POW's!

let me just share with you some of the comments and then my thoughts on them.

"we have been doing baby wise for about a week now (so my son started at 10 weeks). i know it takes some time but he is really hating his naps! he sleeps excellent through the night but nap time is a whole other story. he will usually only sleep for 30-45 minutes so the other 45minutes to an hour is spent with him screaming. what are we doing wrong? he is on a 3 hour schedule, should it be longer at this point? is he getting too many naps during the day or is it just because we are starting out on it so late? i feel like he should be doing better by now with his naps."

some babies are just cat nappers!! the kid is 10 weeks old, hes still very new to this world and he is sleeping well during the night....stop whinging. My giggle girl was the same but we got 20min sleeps, i figured it was a trade off for her doing so well at night......and this was when she was much older than 10 10 weeks we were still co bedding and feeding by boob on demand. why would you want to hear your child scream for 45 mins if you don't have to??

"I am really struggling with disciplining my son. He is 18 months, very intelligent, and very strong willed. I have tried saying no, doing time outs, spanking and half the time he laughs at me or ignores me. I always knew as a mom this would be my weak point, but it is made especially clear since he is strong willed.

What consequences has anyone tried that are effective, especially with a strong willed child?"

As someone who has a 19 month old VERY independent giggle girl, smacking isn't going to help.....i van tell you now. HOW ABOUT YOU TRY TALKING! All smacking does is teach them that violence is ok!
If i explain to her what shes doing and why its not safe to do she listens almost 90% of the time.....the other 10% of the time i put my big girl panties on, act like a mum and REMOVE her from the situation and go find something more fun for us to do TOGETHER!

"Hey people, I'm so thankful that I found this site! I need help too!

1. Like Ruth, my baby is not yet sleeping through the night at almost 9 weeks old. She's been on a 3-hr schedule beginning at 7am each day since 3 wks old.

2. Also, she typically wakes only at 3am to eat, then 5am to fuss, but both times goes right back to sleep after a little soothing from us. Sometimes, she also wakes around 12 or 1 and is wide awake. I don't know why!
Help help o help.

We did Baby Whisperer with our first child, our son. It is quite similar. I thought she would be easier, but she's not. She screams whenever she's awake and not held."

THE BABY IS 9 WEEKS OLD! they are not supposed to sleep though the night! shes waking because she is hungry and wants comfort from her mum! don't punish her for that by dumping her in a room alone! IDIOT!

I think some of these mothers need a good smack around the head themselves and to parent according to their own child's wants and needs rather than what a book says.
I also think what they are whinging about isn't that bad at all.

I'm going to tell you about a friend of mine.

she has two kids. the eldest is 2.5 and the youngest is 3 0r 4 months old. she suffers from PND and over the past few moths has had more crap happen to her than anyone deserves! But in the past WEEK her youngest has been constipated and has colic, she has a uterine infection and her eldest is being a HUGE terror which is unusual and they cant work out why. Her partner is very supportive luckily and i know that things will work out in the end but this wonderful mother deserves a medal for all the things she is dealing with. These baby wise whingers wouldn't last a day in her shoes!

Babywise to me seems like dog training manuals, all about convenience to the owner.

THEY ARE A PERSON! a baby not a puppy!

when you have a baby you should be aware that your life miss out on sleep, your social life changes and you cant just pop the kid out and get back to your old life with a cute (QUIET) fashion accessory in a pram.

And even with all the changes you make to be a mummy...i love it and would never give up my new fun exciting funny life for all the sleep in the world!

Love and Smiles

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Crunchy or just squishy?

How do you know if you are a crunchy parent?
Until a few weeks ago i had never heard the term before.
Its taken from the nickname granola parents.....hence the crunchy i suppose.

The facebook page "crunchy mamas international give some examples of crunchy interests
Baby Cued Feeding
Baby-Led Weaning
Physiological Birth
Mother/Baby-friendly Birth
Sleep Sharing/CoSleeping
Nighttime Parenting
Cloth Diapering
Alternative Vaxing/Non-Vaxing
Whole Foods/Organic Foods
Home Cooking/Gardening
Buying Local
Vegan/Vegetarian Diets
Montessori/Waldorf Education
Natural Toys
Animal Rights
Human Rights
Attachment Parenting
Gentle Birth
Gentle Mothering
Peaceful Parenting
Natural Family Living"

So i will explain my case and you can make a decision on if you think I'm crunchy or not (make sure you let me know!)

-I tried to have minimal drugs whilst in labour (I was very anti-epidural, we only want on child and if i was going only do this labour caper once i wanted to FEEL it)

-I had trouble breastfeeding at the beginning so giggle girl was fed expressed breast milk from a BPA free bottle on demand until i got feeding sorted and continued to feed on demand until my milk dried up when she was 6 months old.

-We co-bedded until she was 4 months old

-While she was small I wore a sling to carry her

-We are working on EC toilet training at the moment

- We didn't do baby lead weening as such but followed her cues and didn't force her if she wasn't interested, now we do finger food and food that she can use a fork with(she loves using cutlery)

-We don't smack, but she does get a small tap on the hand (ad i mean small!) if she is trying to touch something dangerous after being told not to and explained why she cant touch.

-we don't yell at her. she does get roused on but never yelled at. When she does something wrong (or something right) what she has just done is explained to her and why she should or shouldn't do it any more.

-We have a dog so that she will learn how to treat animals with respect.

-Her dad works away alot so I am her constant in her little world. She has never been away from me overnight and she doesn't go to child or day care. I'm always there and she knows it.

-I try to find toys that are handmade (they are always so expensive!) And i have started making clothes for her.

- We love hand-me-downs and everything second hand

So am i crunchy or am i squishy?

let me know

Love and Smiles

Sunday, January 24, 2010

what are you waiting for?

I recently found out that a friend of mine had passed away.
It was very sudden and without warning and it shocked me to the core.
she was in her mid-20's like me, she had only been married a few years, ran her own successful business and had just finished building her dream home. it seems like such a waste of a young life.

what upset me more than anything else though was that the last time i had communicated with her,online admittedly, not the most personal format but we were very busy women, she had told me that they were planning on trying for children this year.

Now that can't happen, but it made me think....what was she waiting for?

As i was fairly young when i fell pregnant with giggle girl I somehow became the the all knowing oracle of "how do you know if its the right time to have a baby?"

To begin with i was patient and tried to answer one particular "friend's" questions by explaining what was involved with parenting and some of the challenges that she could be faced with in the first 12 moths (as that was all i was up to myself at that stage)
only to have her explain to me all the things i hadn't done before having a baby that she wanted to do, most of them were financial and status markers- she wanted to buy a house and have nice furniture and have a bigger car and travel more etc etc.

Yes, i can see some logic in her argument BUT i also cant see the point of waiting until life is"perfect" only to find out its too late or have something happen tomorrow that means you will never have children. people over think things, and there are too many "what if's" Im not saying have a baby if your life is a complete shitfight, but if you have everything you need plus a bit more (not everything you want....that's a different story) then whats really holding you it more than just the money and "stuff" that you are worried about, maybe you know deep down that your relationship isnt as good as you pretend it is?

[Side note-on the topic of buying a house, yes i know rent is dead money but all the nice things to go in the house, well kids dont know the different between something worth $5 and something worth $ long as it helps whatever action figure is cool at the time fall off a balcony faster who cares.]

I bet that the family of my friend who passed away wish that she had started trying for a baby earlier. it would mean that there is still a little piece of her left behind, and as sad as that would be for the child they would know that they were loved.

The moral of the story, follow Nike's advice and "Just do it!" ....what are you REALLY waiting for??

{BTW the "friend" who asked my advice ended up getting a puppy and then went on to tell me that toilet training a puppy was much harder work than training a child........ i will let you give me your thoughts on that one!}

Love and Smiles

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Tats, Tits and Toddlers.

I'm not a heavily tattooed mummy....yet!.... but plan on getting a lot more ink within the next couple of years.
So that means i will be a young mum with visible ink and a young child in tow.

I am to be society's nightmare!

But why?

I am a good parent, my giggle girl is always healthy and mostly happy (shes a toddler....expect some huge tanties!) shes a clever cookie. she isn't beaten, abused or stupidly spoilt. I provide her with healthy food and she is always clean and dressed appropriately for the weather conditions.

So how come my choice to have art on my arms makes me automatically a bad person and parent?

Society's attitude towards tattoos is changing, most of the 18-25 year old males that i know have at least one tough sticker etched into their skin for life. But mothers seem to be exempt for this evolution of attitudes. Are mothers still expected to conform to society's ideal of "normal?" what about the funky, sexy alternative looking mummies out there raising wonderful, grounded, beautiful children?

I would love to hear from any tattooed mummies out there, are you judged based on whats on your skin?

Love and Smiles

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Hi I'm Z.

I'm a 20-something stay at home mummy with one 19month old giggle girl.

I live in Sydney, NSW, Australia.

I like- sparkly things, tattoos, my iPhone, coffee, Max Brenner chocolate shops, music, and ultra sweet white wines.

I love- my family (my husband and giggle girl as well as my extended family) cuddles and random kisses from my giggle girl

I dislike- rude people, housework, my backside, people without children who give parenting advice.

I hate- men who have opinions on women's issues without having a vagina (eg, Tony Abbott!), violence against anyone especially children

What are your likes, loves, dislikes and hates?

Love and smiles

Things my mother was right about.

My mum is right about most things (although i would never tell her, the world doesn't need an "I told you so" that huge!) these are just a few of the things i was told from the time i was young.

Do pelvic floor exercises.
I had these explained to me from the time I was ten years old. "flex your muscles like you are holding in a wee" in theory I should be able to crush a coke can but after having a baby i still, like most other mothers, cross my legs when I sneeze. Just in case.

If you've got it, flaunt it. But only one area at a time.
Obviously this advise wasn't given to the prosta-tots I see hanging out at Parramatta shopping centre with EVERYTHING hanging out and nothing is left to the imagination. What's more disturbing is if you don't have "it" and you flaunt everything anyhow

Breast is best.
I had a rough start in to the world of breast feeding. my daughter was 6 weeks old before she would latch properly, before that she was given expressed breast milk which i pumped up to 5-6 times a day. As soon as she started latching and feeding properly it was such a wonderful feeling, it was like we were connected not just physically but in spirit as well. i wish i was feeding her still now, and she is well over a year old, but when she was 5 months old my body made a decision for me and shut down my milk supply. I am happy in the knowledge that i gave my child the best start possible.

Always go with your gut instinct
There have been times in my teenage years that i ignored everything my senses were screaming at me and over time those signals turned from a shout to a mumble. It took a long time to learn to listen to my gut again and since becoming a mum i rely on these instincts more and more. Mum also told me when i was younger if something didn't feel right that i could leave the situation and she would back me up no matter what. That is the kind of parent I want to be.

what advice were you given as a child that has stuck with you?

love and smiles