How to Choose a Breast Pump That’s Right for You

nursing and pumping

Nursing and pumping has become a huge part of my daily routine. That said, choosing the right breast pump is extremely important.

I’m breastfeeding for a second time, and recently received pump number three. So, I consider myself somewhat of a breastfeeding and pumping connoisseur. I’ve shared tips and tricks to maintaining milk supply, and how to choose a breast pump that’s right for you.

I know that nursing and pumping isn’t for everyone. But, I took the liberty of reviewing a few breast pumps that you may find helpful.

Please don’t forget to give my video a thumbs up and subscribe. Also, you can enter to win a Lansinoh Signature Pro Double Electric Breast Pump, bottle, and pumping, by clicking here!

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Why More Moms Should Want to Breastfeed

IMG_2871I was fortunate to have breastfed Princess for two years. That was one of my main goals as a mom. I wanted to make sure that my baby received the best start. I’ve had conversations with other moms in the past about nursing, and quickly realized that it’s a hot button issue.

I would never want to come of like a preacher. Whatever a mom chooses is her business. Some tell me that they didn’t produce enough milk. Some have even told me that nursing made them feel uncomfortable. I remember one mom telling me that she doesn’t want her child sucking on her boob.

I have my own personal views on nursing. For me, it’s a must. Breastfeeding has allowed me to develop a strong bond with my child and it saved me a ton of money. I didn’t have to buy any formula.

Now that baby number two is on the way, I plan on doing the same. With the passing of the Affordable Care Act, I can also take advantage of getting a free breast pump. You can find more information in my recent post, I got my breast pump covered by insurance and you can too  at www.whattoexpect.com.

After reading, maybe more moms will consider nursing as an option.

 Would getting a free breast pump encourage you to nurse?
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Cold Turkey

If my boobies could talk, they’d probably scream “enough already!”  They’ve been working overtime these past couple years and it’s time for them to retire.  That’s right!  They’re finally cutting off their milk supply completely.

The original plan  was to breastfeed for a year.  I wasn’t quite sure if I’d make it that far, but surprising I did.  I’ve managed to overcome many obstacles including, the pain and dip in supply.  I didn’t know who enjoyed it most- me or my daughter.

Since becoming a mom, I’ve struggled to find balance between career and motherhood.  In addition to providing the best nutrients ever, nursing seemed to make up for lost times when I was away.  It was great to have been able to bond with Princess.  Up until her second birthday, she looked forward to “boobies.”  She’d walk me into her TV/play room and tell me to sit down and go at it.  For a while there I thought I’d be breastfeeding until whenever, but I’ve realized that my boobies have served its purpose.  It’s time for my little girl to move on.  The decision to go cold turkey wasn’t easy because when my baby girl wants something, she’s relentless.

I’ve known moms who’ve nursed until preschool age because they had trouble weaning.  I decided that wasn’t the route I wanted to go. Believe me, if it were up to Princess she’d probably nurse until college.  The sight of that alone freaks me out.

Anyway, I’m proud that we’ve made it two years.  She’s cried when I told her “no” these past few days.  Offering her something else she loves has seemed to curb those cravings.  In the meantime, I’ll have fun bonding with her in many other ways.  I’m gonna miss nursing my baby girl.  Who knows, maybe my boobs will do a Jordan and come out of retirement.  Baby number two may be just around the corner.  We’ll see.

Please sure to check out my Nursing Diaries.

Weather Anchor Mama

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Stop The Presses Beyonce Breastfeeds!

Beyonce with hBlue Ivy. Carter Family/Ed Burke for Beyonce.com/AP Photo

Beyonce sparks public breastfeeding debate.  Whoop-ti-do!!  Apparently, the star was seen nursing Blue Ivy at a public restaurant.  I’m baffled that this is making national news.  Some people frown upon mothers choosing to nurse out in the open, and I don’t get it.  I’ve been nursing for 18 months strong and make no excuses for breastfeeding Princess in public.

I’ve nursed just about every where.  Don’t get me wrong, I never completely exposed my boobies.  But if I happened to be eating at a restaurant,  I’ve whipped it out right there.  Why should I have leave the table and go to the bathroom?  That’s just gross.  There’s no reason why Princess can’t eat with us at the table.  I know a lot of folks may disagree.  So what!  At the end of the day, I’m happy and my baby’s happy.  I’m careful and discrete enough to not let patrons get an eye full.  If they do, oh well.

I remember nursing in the middle of a shopping mall.  I really didn’t care who saw.  My baby girl was starving and cranky, so I did what I had to do at the time.  An employee saw me and kindly informed me of a comfy lounge for nursing moms, which I thought was very nice.  But let’s face it, if there are tons of people around and your child is screaming for food then a mom’s gotta do what a mom’s gotta do.

That’s exactly what Beyonce did.  I just don’t understand why it’s such a big deal.  Nursing moms do it all the time.  However when you factor in the statistics reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2010, I can sort of understand why some may feel that it’s a huge deal.  A reported 54 % of black (non-Hispanic) moms breastfeed, in comparison to 74% white, and 80% Hispanic.  One blogger feels that stars like Beyonce will encourage more black women to nurse

While I would love to see the stats for nursing black moms rise, the reality is that it may not be right for everyone.  It doesn’t make them bad moms.  It’s just a personal choice.  Kudos to Beyonce for breastfeeding beautiful Blue Ivy!  But, I don’t feel that we should appoint her as a breastfeeding trailblazer for us.  I just think all women should educate themselves about the benefits of nursing.  Then make a conscious decision as to whether or not it’s right for them.  You shouldn’t do it because a celebrity makes it “cool.”

As for me, I’ll continue to wear my breastfeeding badge with pride.

Would you consider nursing because a celebrity does it?

Weather Anchor Mama

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Nursing Diaries (Part Seven)

“Change of Heart”

I used to be one of those people who would get grossed out at the site of mother nursing her toddler.  Now that I’m a mom, I take it back.  Princess is 18 months and I can’t believe we’ve made it this far!  She still loves the boob and has no desire to give it up any time soon.  She’s so hooked, I think I may have to send her to booby rehab.

The original plan was to breastfeed for a year.  Even though nursing was a bit challenging in the beginning, I was able to keep up.  Nursing and pumping came easy after a while.  I never had to substitute with formula.  I felt like I conquered the world!  Princess dined solely on my milk for the first 6 months.  At that point I began adding solids to her diet.  By 9 months she was pretty much eating 3 meals a day.  I thought she’d eventually wean herself because she loved food so much!  Boy was I wrong!
When she turned 12 months, Princess was still attached to the boob.  In fact, she still wakes up for her nightly fix.  There’s no set schedule for our sessions.  But, she randomly undresses me and reaches in for the kill.  So here’s the kicker…the other day she asked, “booby?”  I used to feel that if a kid can ask for breast milk, then it’s time to call it quits. However, now I have a completely different take on the whole thing.

I won’t lie and say breastfeeding is easy breezy.  There have been times when I’ve had to calm her cries by whipping out a boob in a random public place.  It’s been 18 months and we’re still nursing strong, and through it all I’ve learned so much.  The most valuable lesson here is to never say never.  So the next time you see a mom nursing a toddler, don’t react the way I did before.

Oh, as for boob rehab…not a chance!  I’ll be nursing until whenever.

Weather Anchor Mama

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Nursing Diaries (Part Three)

“Introducing the Bottle”

As the saying goes: ”You have to kiss a lot of frogs before you get your prince.”  Well my Princess had to drink from many bottles, before finding the right one.

Within the first couple weeks of having my daughter nursing became second nature.  Getting up for nighttime feedings were tough, as you parents already know.  But, I knew what I was getting into and complaining about it was out of the question.  Nonetheless, my little Princess and I were doing just fine.  That was until we had our first doctor visit.  I told the pediatrician that I planned on returning to work, and asked about the best time to introduce the bottle.  He told my hubby and I that we basically should start right away.  He then said, “If you don’t, she may never take the bottle!”  The thought of not being able to go back to work because my daughter wouldn’t take the bottle was absolutely terrifying.  That actually happened to a close friend of mine.  After a few weeks of exclusively breastfeeding, her daughter refused to drink from the bottle.  So she had no choice, but to quit her job in order to nurse.  I applaud her for doing that because if it came down to it, I’d do the same thing.  But, I also made a commitment to return to work after my twelve-week maternity leave.  It wouldn’t have been an easy decision to become a stay at mom.  So on that note, my hubby and I took the doctor’s advice and got the baby bottle introduction rollin’.

I didn’t realize that it would be so difficult.  We had tons of bottles that were gifted to us at our baby shower.  We first went with the Tommee Tippee newborn starter set.  I read good reviews and figured it would be the right choice for my baby girl.

I also read that the bottle was designed with a woman’s nipple in mind. It has a wide nipple base, it’s flexes and stretches like the breast, and produces less air build-up.  Princess had already been dealing with a lot of gas, so I thought that this would definitely help.  Not!!! Milk leaked everywhere, and it was clear that Princess didn’t like drinking from this bottle. It was a complete mess! I ended up having to return the set. I knew that introducing the bottle would take some time, but I never really thought we would have to go through a bunch of different ones.  

My sis had also given me left over unused bottles from our baby shower. We tried those and Princess wouldn’t drink from it either. There were a bunch of others that also didn’t work out.  I was beginning to lose hope when I remembered the bottles that came with my Madela Pump.  I filled one with breast milk and my hubby gave it to her. She loved it! 

  Who knew that babies had a bottle preference? It was like auditioning for a role! Finally, everything was working out. My hubby and I even develop a system where we would give her one bottle every other day, and he’d be the one who fed her. Since I was nursing, it was only right that he experience feeding time.  It also further strengthened their daddy daughter bond.

Nursing was still my top priority and I didn’t want to overdue the bottle-feeding in the beginning. I heard that some babies end up losing interest in nursing completely, if that happens. That’s when nursing and pumping became my routine. I began expressing milk and storing it in the freezer.  

I am a planner who likes to keep things in order, call me crazy. But, you never know what can happen. I could be sick and need to take medication (which could affect milk supply and/or my baby), or I could have to work late.  I believe it’s great to have extra breast milk handy.  Besides, pumping and nursing kept my milk supply up. 

Princess still prefers drinking from Madela bottles, and I am still nursing.  Of course, every baby is different and I am in no way endorsing any of the products mentioned above.  But whether you’re a stay at home mom or work outside of the home, I think it’s so important to let your baby be the judge.  Some nursing moms may choose to introduce the bottle with formula, while others pump their own milk.  Either way, you may have to go through a few bottles before finding that right one.

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