On Becoming Babywise: Birth to 2 Weeks

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Josh and I decided early on before our first baby was born that we would be following the schedule outlined in On Becoming Baby Wise: Giving Your Infant the GIFT of Nighttime Sleep.

I blogged about our Babywise experience with Caden and was shocked by the response. To date, it is one of my more popular posts. I know there are many differing opinions on this book but for us it has been one of the best decisions we have made for our family.

We used Babywise with Maisie as well, but because I was dealing with postpartum depression/anxiety and going to counseling it wasn’t a huge priority on my list to be blogging.

I found it very helpful when we started using Babywise with Caden to read posts from other mommy bloggers who had also used Babywise with their children. While I am no expert on sleeping babies, we have used Babywise twice before and had great success. If you are curious about Babywise or are using Babywise in your own home I hope you find this post and those that follow equally as helpful.

Labor & Delivery

I shared Jesse’s Birth Story two weeks ago. I nursed him in the delivery room soon after he was born. He latched on right away and nursed for 40 minutes.

Hospital Stay

We stayed in the hospital for a little over 24 hours and were released to go home the day after he was born. I love that I don’t have to worry about cooking anything while I am in the hospital and can pick up the phone and place an order for a meal I wouldn’t typically eat.

Jesse nursed every two hours while we were at the hospital ranging anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes with each feeding.

Siblings

Caden and Maisie came to the hospital several hours after Jesse was born with my parents to meet their new brother. They only stayed for an hour which was plenty long enough. The postpartum rooms, while very nice at the hospital, aren’t quite big enough to comfortably hold 4 adults, 2 preschoolers, and an infant.

Once Caden got to hold his brother, introduce himself, and give him a kiss he was more interested in finding things to climb on in the room. Maisie was totally enamored with him and wanted to hold him multiple times.

Over the last few weeks both kids have been so great. We have had more tears and needed extra snuggles but honestly that is to be expected. Maisie also had the stomach flu :(. We had to be extra careful in making sure that her and Jesse stayed separated and that Josh and I were extra diligent about washing our hands. Thankfully she is the only one in the house who became ill.

On a sidenote if you have children who are sick and are wanting to try to keep yourself healthy I highly recommend getting a B-comp shot. I got these monthly during my pregnancy and Josh and I both made appointments to get one after Maisie got sick. They are great for boosting your immune system.

Nursing

The first three days Jesse nursed every two hours and averaged 15 minutes each side. Then my milk came in. Once that happened he started to stretch the length between his feedings to 2 1/2 hours during the day for a total of 10 minutes on each side.

I scheduled an appointment with a Lactation Consultant during the first week just to make sure that everything was looking ok with his latch and that I was positioning him correctly. This was my first time meeting with a LC and it was wonderful! I highly recommend schedule an appointment with a LC regardless of how many babies you have had.

Nursing is going well, aside from the leaking and swollen boobs, but I know in a few weeks my supply will adjust itself.  I had typed this post up several days ago and wouldn’t you know it I developed mastitis and I am now on antibiotics 4 times a day for the next week. Sunday night it hit all of a sudden. Sore breast that was painful to touch and by Monday afternoon it was starting to become red and ached whenever I moved. Thankfully I saw my doctor yesterday and I am hopeful that in the next few days I will start to feel better again. If you have never had mastitis be so thankful. I had it once with Caden, didn’t have it with Maisie, and assumed I was in the clear with Jesse. I think my over supply of milk did me in this time, while with Caden I was wearing sports bras that were overly tight.

My next few days will be filled with bedrest, loads of nursing, castor oil packs, hot showers, and baby snuggles. Plus, I am hoping to watch a few Christmas movies with the kids.

Schedule

This is a rough outline of what our routine is during the day. Some feedings are adjusted by 30 minutes if the baby needs to be fed sooner because he is hungry.

Birth – Week 1

Jesse ate every two hours for the first 3 days. After Jesse returned to his birth weight, which happened at 1 week, we were given the go ahead from his pediatrician to allow him to sleep for up to 4 hours during the night without needing to wake him to eat. Over the next several days Jesse gradually began to lengthen the time between feedings from 2 1/2 to 3 hours.

Week 2
  • 7am: Eat/Waketime, Diapering
  • 8am: Nap
  • 9:30am: Eat/Waketime, Diapering
  • 10:30am Nap
  • 12pm: Eat/Waketime, Diapering
  • 1:00pm: Nap
  • 2:30pm: Eat/Waketime, Diapering, Nap
  • 5pm: Eat/Waketime, Diapering
  • 6pm: Nap
  • 7 pm: Eat, Diaper, Back to Crib
  • 9:30pm: Eat, Diaper, Back to Crib
  • 12:30am: Eat, Diaper, Back to Crib
  • 4am: Eat, Diaper, Back to Crib

Waketime

Jesse’s waketime is his feeding time. And even that is a struggle at some feedings because he really just wants to sleep. I can’t say that I blame him either. Labor and delivery are exhausting once the adrenaline burst wears off.

During the first two weeks I tried to have him back in his crib within 50-60 minutes from when he started nursing.

Naps &Night Sleep

Once we were home from the hospital we started using Jesse’s crib in his room for naps and nighttime sleep. He occasionally has napped in his bouncer if he has needed to be inclined after a longer feeding, but at night he sleeps in his crib.

The first two weeks Jesse slept all the time during the day and night. This sounds great in theory but it is really hard sometimes to wake a sleeping infant to eat and keep them awake during the entire feed.

I did lots of skin to skin nursing sessions with him to try and keep him awake. This worked fairly well at keeping him more alert for a full feeding. With Caden and Maisie I sometimes resorted to a cold wash cloth on their feet to keep them awake.

While Jesse slept at night, Josh and I tagged teamed him, with me nursing and Josh burping and swaddling. My husband is a rockstar with this baby swaddling him in his blankets.

If Jesse wakes from sleep during the middle of the night he is fed. I know that Babywise is a controversial book but having read it now multiple times I am not really sure why. Over and over the book clearly says that if your baby is hungry to feed your baby. Schedules and routines are great but especially at this stage it is important to not let them dictate when and how often the baby is fed.

I have been really thankful that Josh has been able to take off so much time from work. It has been a much smoother transition for everyone having daddy home.

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Losing The Baby Weight: Nutrition

Happy Wednesday friends! If you are just joining the Losing The Baby Weight series welcome!

Here are the topics that have previously been covered:

Wednesday, June 12Pregnancy & Exercise

Wednesday, June 19What To Expect After You Deliver

Wednesday, June 26: The First Six Weeks

Wednesday, July 3: Nutrition

Losing The Baby Weight

Good nutrition after delivery is so much more important than during your pregnancy. Please don’t misunderstand. I am a huge advocate for eating a nutrient rich diet during pregnancy. Your diet after pregnancy directly impacts the quality of  your breast milk and how quickly you recover from childbirth. Regardless of if you are breastfeeding or formula feeding your baby a balanced diet of  complex carbohydrates, protein, and fats, with as little sugar as possible is going to increase your success with losing the baby weight.

Complex Carbohydrates vs. Simple Carbohydrates

Complex carbohydrates take a little longer to digest, are high in fiber, more satisfying, and they don’t raise the sugar levels in the blood as quickly as simple carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates act as the body’s fuel, and they contribute significantly to energy production and have a higher nutritional value than simple carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates are commonly found in whole plant based foods and are high in vitamins and minerals. Most people should consume between 40-60% of total calories from carbohydrates with the majority being complex carbohydrates.

Complex carbohydrates include:

  • Green vegetables
  • Whole grains and foods made from them, such as oatmeal, pasta, and whole-grain breads
  • Starchy vegetables such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, and pumpkin
  • Beans, lentils, and peas

Helpful Hint: Consume foods that are high in fiber to improve your digestive health, lower cholesterol, and improve blood sugar levels. Adults need between 20-30 grams of fiber daily. 

Simple carbohydrates will cause your blood sugar to spike and can leave you feeling tired. No new mama wants to feel this way. Most simple carbohydrates contain few nutrients (fruit and milk being an exception) and are often called “empty calories”.

Avoid these simple carbohydrates:

  • Candy
  • Soda
  • Syrups
  • Table sugar

Helpful Hint: Make sure you are getting enough nutrients and not just more calories while you are breastfeeding your baby.

Enjoy moderate sized portions of these simple carbohydrates:

  • Fruits
  • Milk and Milk Products

Protein & Fats

For a 14-70+ year old woman the Recommend Dietary Intake for protein is 46 grams per day. For lactating woman add an additional 25 grams. If you eat meat daily there is a good chance you are already consuming the correct amount. If you are vegetarian or vegan you can supplement your diet with a plant based protein as needed, keep reading for more information on supplements. Lentils, kidney beans, peanuts, and sunflower seeds are just a few sources of plant based protein.

Helpful Hint: Once your body gets the amount of protein it needs, it converts the rest to energy, and if you already have enough energy, it is converted to fat. High amounts of protein can also deplete calcium stores in the body leading to osteoporosis.

Not all fat is bad. In fact our bodies need between 20-35% of our total calories consumed to come from fats in order to properly function. Stock up on avocados, nut butters, olive oil, walnuts, and fish. Avocados can easily be added to sandwiches, salads, smoothies, or can be eaten by themselves for a quick snack. Stay away from chicken with the skin on, anything that comes in a wrapper, fried foods, and candy bars.

Dairy & Sugar

If you are looking to lose weight try eliminating dairy and sugar from your diet. Hey, I never said it would be easy, but this elimination method is a tried and true way to shed a few pounds. Plus this will have no adverse affect on your milk supply if you are still nursing.

There were several moms I spoke with prior to delivering Caden that mentioned that they had eliminated dairy products from their diets because it caused their babies to have upset tummies. After hearing this I cut out most dairy products from my diet while I was still pregnant. I didn’t typically drink cows milk so only using almond milk was not a huge deal. Cheese on the other hand was a little harder but after two weeks I didn’t miss it.

Helpful Hint: Use nutritional yeast to add a cheesy flavor to salads and taco’s. Read more on nutritional yeast later.

Excess amounts of sugar can lead to weight gain and cause you to feel overly tired after the initial sugar rush has passed. I suggest slowly weaning sugar out of your diet. Sodas and candy should be the first things to go. Baked goods such as cookies, cakes, cupcakes, and pastries while tempting are not going to fuel your body for the long haul.

Helpful Hint: Try a KIND Bar. The Dark Chocolate and Sea Salt only has 5 grams of sugar in it! Much better than the 24 grams of sugar in a two Twix cookie bars. Yikes!

Grocery Shopping Must Haves

groceryUnsweetened Vanilla Silk and Dark Chocolate Almond Milk | KIND Bars | Spinach | Oats | Eggs | Gluten Free Pretzels| Avocados | Peanut Butter | Chia Seeds | Emergen-C

Set yourself up for success by always keeping several key items stocked in your pantry and fridge. I love all these items because they can easily be used to create several quick and easy meal or snack options ranging from smoothies, salads, omelets, and oatmeal.

Helpful Hint: Plan ahead of time. Stock up on key items. Failure to plan is planning to fail.

You can find key items that we keep stocked in our home on the Buschel Family Grocery Shopping List HERE. This is not an exhaustive list but does have our most used purchases. We try to keep these items always on stock for meals, juicing, snacks, and desserts.

Do Breastfeeding Mama’s Need Extra Calories?

Honestly this could be a separate post but I think it is important to share this information with the nutrition section because if you are a breastfeeding mama what you eat is important not just for you but also for your baby. If you have ever nursed a little baby you know how common it is to feel hungry all the time. I do mean all the time.

[Read more…]

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My Breastfeeding Story

For the next few weeks I am going to be sharing my experiences as a first time mommy and what has worked for our family during this past (very soon to be) year. Sigh. I can’t believe my baby is going to be year old in June. If you are just joining me here are my previous posts:

Baby Registry Must Haves

On Becoming Baby Wise 

1st Trimester Recap

2nd Trimester Recap

3rd Trimester Recap

Homemade Baby Food Essentials

Feeding The Baby: The First Year

It seems appropriate that after talking yesterday about feeding Caden solids now would be an excellent time to share my breastfeeding story. I knew before I was even pregnant with Caden that my goal was going to be to breastfeed my babies. I approached breastfeeding just like I do anything in my life that I have no clue about, I asked a ton of questions. I talked with my friends, clients, and ob and read tons of articles on the internet. I was in completely uncharted territory about what was going to be happening to my body.

After talking with my girlfriends I learned about inverted nipples, cracked nipples, engorgement, clogged ducts, mastitis, colostrum, supply issues, and a wide array of breastfeeding products. I wanted to be prepared for anything and everything that could possible happen. You can see a few of my favorite products here.

On June 7th, 2012 within 30 minutes of Caden being born he latched on beautifully and I couldn’t believe that I was actually breastfeeding my baby. I was in awe of what my body had done to protect and grow this little miracle baby and continued to be in awe as I watched him nurse. I nursed Caden every two hours during our hospital stay and had no issues at all with feeding him.

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It took a few days for my milk to actually come and in and holy engorgement, I felt like they were going to explode. To relieve some of the  pressure I busted out my breast pump and realized that I had never sat down and read the instructions or had any clue how of it worked. Caden was napping like a champ while I frantically tried to relieve the ever growing pressure that was accumulating more and more with each passing minute. I was so happy and proud of myself when I saw the milk start to release into the bottles. I felt like a woman. Never mind the fact that I just had a baby and had already been nursing him for a few days.

Everything was going so smoothly. I did not experience any cracking and Caden never had any difficulty latching. Six weeks postpartum I began exercising again. My girlfriends had all given me great advice from their experience with breastfeeding and exercising. I was making sure to drink plenty of water and eat an additional 300-500 calories a day on top of my normal intake.

Two weeks later I decided to go for a run and swim and while I was getting dressed told myself I really needed to buy a larger sized sports bra. Later on that day I noticed a huge and painful lump in my right breast.  It felt like a golf ball had been shoved under my skin. I knew from talking with my girlfriends that this meant I had a clogged duct and there was the possibility that I could develop mastitis.

Mastitis is an infection of breast tissue that can be caused by clogged milk ducts, tight fitting bras, and not emptying the breast all the way during feedings. The symptoms include fever, tender and swollen breast, nausea and/or vomiting, and overall fatigue.

I immediately began massaging my chest to see if I could release the clog (this was really painful) and made an appointment to see my doctor. Several hours later I was diagnosed with mastitis. Booooooo. I was told to go and invest in new bras, and was prescribed several herbal remedies, antibiotics, and a lymphatic massage for my treatment.

If you are diagnosed with mastitis or suspect you have a clogged duct I recommend the following:

  • Massage that breast. It hurts but it will decrease the clogged area.
  • Take hot showers with more massage or soak breasts in a hot tub.
  • Apply castor oil hot compresses before feedings to help reduce inflammation and increase circulation to the infected tissue.
  • Apply hot compress poultice with medical herbs: camomile, lavender, valerian, rose hip, hops, and lemongrass
  • Take antibiotics and tylenol to treat infection and reduce inflammation.
  • Use a lactose free probiotic and dab it on nipples to prevent thrush. Once you start taking an antibiotic it kills all the healthy bacteria making it more likely to develop a yeast infection.
  • Rest, rest and more rest.
  • Continue nursing and pumping as often as possible.
  • Schedule a lymphatic massage.

Again I am not an expert this is just what worked for me and was prescribed by my doctor.

A few weeks later I was feeling much better and have had no other issues while breastfeeding, well aside from Caden biting my boobies :). That hurts pretty bad too.

I was very fortunate to have been home with Caden the majority of his first year. In the first few months when I went back to training clients and teaching Josh or my Mom would try to bottle feed Caden but he was not interested. Thankfully I had the flexibility to arrange and schedule client sessions around Caden’s feeding schedule.

In the last month I started to feed Caden more solid meals and he dropped his two middle of the day nursing sessions. These are my last few days breastfeeding and I am relishing them. Next week I start a 2 month treatment program to remove my varicose veins and can no longer nurse once that treatment begins. I know I will miss holding my baby close to me while he is so content and peaceful.

This past week I started using peppermint essential oil on my breasts to encourage my milk supply to decrease and it has worked beautifully. No engorgement or swelling.

I already know my last nursing session will be bittersweet. I am so blessed to have been able to experience this wonderful bond between a mother and her child.

xoxo, Tamara

PS…I had a mini design update done on my blog :). If you are looking for a website designer to work with I highly recommend Aileen Barker. She is fabulous!

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