Here is a fun picture that my dad sent me. Isabela was born on her grandpa’s birthday, and I just love this comparison photo of them!

Can you believe that…

My tiny girl turns 6 months this Thursday!

I can hardly believe it! It seems just like yesterday that we were bringing her home from the hospital…

Where has my tiny baby girl gone?

Portland!

Last summer, Chris and I traveled to Portland for the first time! I was about 6 weeks pregnant during the visit! We have so much family there, and it was truly wonderful to relax and play with our family in such a beautiful city! We promised ourselves that we would come back to visit after we had the baby.

Soooo, this coming summer I have some trips planned (: I am not sure if Chris will be able to accompany me on all of the trips. First, Isabela and I definitely plan on visiting Portland, either in June or August. In July, Isabela and I will be visiting her Auntie Stacy in Rochester, NY. AND, in April, Chris, Isabela, and I will be going down to Homer, Louisiana to celebrate her first birthday with Lolo (grandpa) Dave! Lolo and Isa share the same birthday!!

So heads up Portlanders, we are coming to visit! I am super excited for all the visits, but especially Portland, because my beautiful cousin and her husband are expecting their first baby this January! I don’t get to see my Portland family very often at all, so it will be so much fun to see them and celebrate all the new babies in the family!

Here are some pictures of Isabela for your enjoyment, by request from Auntie Lisa (:







Tiny updates

Click on the links below to see some pictures from Wisconsin Dells and from our local apple orchard/pumpkin patch.

http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/album.php?aid=151657&id=500020814

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=151957&id=500020814

Stacy is here visiting with us til Tuesday! Then my sister, Aurelia, is coming for a visit, yay! Then, my bestfriend, Jessica, is coming for a visit…woohooo!! And wait… my mom is coming for Thanksgiving, and my mother in law will be here sometime in Dec!

A lot of visits, but I am excited to see friends and family!

I am working on a new blog that should be up by Sunday. And, its another breastfeeding blog. Yes, I realize its another one, but I am blogging about issues and things that are relevant to my life. Breastfeeding is not only relevant to my day to day life, but it is something that I am very passionate about… along with attachment parenting, cloth diapering, organic living and being the best mother and wife I can be (:

Now, of course I have other interests, duh! I love my Jesus, worshipping him, singing joyfully, reading fantastic books, fun exercise, cooking up a storm, learning guitar (HARD), and dancing the night away to salsa/merengue/bachata.

I’m still the same person. I’m just a mommy now, so I like mommy things and care about mommy issues (:

So, in closing, Isabela is doing wonderfully. She rolls all around the house now. She tries to crawl at times, but can only move in circles and backwards. She is teething. She can sit up by herself for a tiny bit, but she prefers to stand. So I have to make sure I’m right beside her, because when sitting, she will randomly push out with her legs ( in her attempt to stand), and if I’m not there, she will fall backwards. phew. That had to be a run-on sentence.

She loves to laugh and her new bestfriend is Buster. She looks for him constantly and cries if she can’t see him.

Chris and I are doing great too! Its nice to have Stacy here!! Isabela loves Stacy, so it feels great to have more free time and help!!

Enjoy the pictures .

NIP

read this:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15720339/

After I read this, I became SO angry. This is exactly why I have been a little nervous to fly.

I am SO amazed at the ignorance of people, at times. I just want to address a few issues that some people may not be aware of when nursing in public.

It is possible to nurse in public, discreetly. I do it all the time. I have NEVER had anyone approach me, as most people just think my daughter is napping. In fact, most people walk by, look over me, and smile. And guess what…I DO NOT use a cover.

When Isabela was an infant, I did use a cover when nursing in public. I found out that it drew more attention to myself, but I felt more comfortable covering up, as I was still getting the hang of learning to breastfeed. Infants are easy to cover while nursing. They aren’t interested in anything but eating.

As soon as babies get around 4 months or so, they become more interested in the world around them. If I tried to cover Isa with a blanket around that time, she would just simply throw the blanket off of her! (: If I used a nursing wrap, she would scream! She simply would not eat while under a blanket, and guess what? Most older babies won’t either.

I usually strategically pick out clothes when I know I am going out. I have 2 or 3 nursing tops, but not a lot because they are’t the cutest. Usually, when she is nursing, I just place a folded blanket, burp cloth, or my jacket right above her head. That totally covers any skin which might be showing. And, when Isa pulls off to smile at people passing by, I just pull the blanket down quickly to cover myself. It works great, and I’ve never been harassed. If I was, however, to pull that blanket over her head, she would start to scream and pull at the blanket. She HATES being covered now.

I think this is what other people don’t get. And, even so, a woman shouldn’t have to cover up while nursing anyway. Not only do I believe that, most most states have laws to protect a woman’s right to nurse in public. Breastfeeding mommies have the same right as other mommies to feed their babies!! And why shouldn’t we?

To those who say, “why don’t you just pump some milk and feed it to her in a bottle?”

OOOHHH, that really pisses me off when people ask me that? Yes, that may be an option, but if I pumped milk and bottlefed every single time I went out, I would not be able to breastfeed today.

Thats right…my milk supply would lessen and eventually diminish if I continued to skip feeding Isa at the breast. Nursing at the breast is what keeps a woman’s milk supply at high levels. Pumping does not stimulate milk supply the same way a baby does..not even close!

Soooo, when I read that article, I knew that I had to blog about it. I cannot believe that major corporations, such as Delta, are making these HUGE mistakes. So many others, like Chick Fil A and Applebees, and even other AIRLINES, have been sued for infringing on breastfeeding mother’s legal rights. And ALL of them have apologized, amongst other things. Oh my goodness..haha. Delta better be prepared for La Leche League and other pro bfing organizations to come at them now (:

Breastfeeding part 2


If your just arriving at my blog, your gonna want to read the post before this one, first.

(: I didn’t make you wait too long, for the ones who are actually reading this. Here you go!

ok, we finally are home. Isabela eats every hour on the dot. Sometimes more. In the first couple of weeks, every feeding takes about 20-30 minutes. The first 2 weeks were so incredibly hard. Infants are demanding, I tell you!!!

I felt so isolated from everyone, always having to go upstairs to nurse her (since we had guests all the time). Since she started having trouble latching, my nipples were really suffering. Nursing every hour gave me blisters, and I even started to bleed several times. It was soooo rough, and I remember having one moment where I just really wanted to quit!! I remember telling my mother in law, that things were a little rough and I didn’t know if I could make it. I felt so alone…and I was in pain.

But all I could think about was how important breastfeeding was to me and for her. I thought about how my labor and delivery was the complete opposite of what I hoped for. I thought about the stories other women told me of how much they loved breastfeeding. How, eventually, their little ones would gaze into their eyes and stroke their faces while they would eat. I thought about all the immunities I would be giving Isabela. And I thought about what would happen if I switched to formula. I knew that infants weren’t born able to digest cow’s milk well and that a lot of infants were allergic to cows milk. I knew she would most likely have reflux if I switched. (haha. She got it anyway, but thats another story) I knew if I switched to formula, that Isabela’s tummy would hurt soooo bad from the milk change.

So, I kept on. And I AM SO HAPPY. I absolutely LOVE breastfeeding my little one. OOOOHHHH, WE have had some HARD times. I will elaborate more on that on my next blog. But yes, we have been through some very tough nursing times.

My self confidence was laying on the floor, beaten up, jumped on, kicked , and broken to pieces. I had blistery, bloody nipples, and would cry sometimes when feeding her. When Isabela began to have reflux, she would scream all throughout her feedings. She would unlatch, cry, scream, and arch her back. After every feeding, she would cry her eyes out. She was projectile vomiting, and breastmilk seemed to be the culprit. I was so discouraged. I felt like everything was my fault. To make a long story short, we finally figured out she had infant acid reflux. I eliminated dairy, soy, wheat and nuts from my diet, Isabela was put on Prevacid,and together it made a world of difference!! But those first 10 weeks were horrible, discouraging, and heart breaking. But we MADE it. Yes, we made it, and my baby is thriving!

( why didn’t I just switch to formula when I began to suspect allergens were passing through my breast milk to Isabela and causing reflux. Because, if I switched to formula, her reflux would have been even more severe. That’s right. Reflux babies usually have reflux in the first place because they are formula fed and their tummies have a hard time digesting the cow’s milk enzymes and even the soy in the formula alternatives. When a formula fed baby has severe reflux, doctors generally recommend that the mother breastfeeds them as much as possible. Unfortunately, Isa’s reflux was caused by a sensitivity to the dairy, wheat, soy, and nuts. So, even if I switched to formula, Isa would have still had the reflux, only much, much worse. Sure, the nursing problems would have disappeared, but my poor tiny would have been much more miserable and in even more pain then before!)

SO, HERE IS MY INSPIRATION FOR THIS BLOG…..YAY!!! I have exclusively nursed Isabela for 6 months on 22 Oct. And I plan to do it at least a year. (the American Pediatrics Assc recommends 2 years, so we will see how old she is when she self-weans). I am SOOOO proud of myself for getting through not just the initial hardships of nursing, but the reflux hardships. Having an allergy free diet was VERY challenging. VERY. I could have just as easily and selfishly given up. Especially when it came down making the decisions to restrict my diet. Which was HARD, but eventually became easier.
AND…Isabela has not had one bit of formula, nada! She is a great eater (: And, I have sacrificed soooo much, just to give my little one the very best.

Now, when she eats, she’ll pop off sometimes to give me a big grin or laugh. She reaches for my face and gazes into my eyes. Since she is so easily distracted now, she will grab my shirt or necklace and give it an intense look of concentration. I love being able to hear her eat and know that she is getting the best nutrition that exists for her. I am so happy and thankful that I was able to nurse my little tiny and champion through all the hardships that came our way.

So, this is my blog on breastfeeding. It was essential that I wrote on this, because it is now a very important issue for me. I believe every woman should at least try to breastfeed. And, I believe that even if you know you will switch to formula, that you should at least breast feed during the first 3 days, when colostrum is present.

Colostrum is the first milk that is present, right after birth. Once your baby is born, it is present in small amounts for the first three days to match the small size of babies stomach. Women should breastfeed at least 8 to 12 times per 24 hours so that baby receives this valuable milk. Colostrum high in protein and low in fat and sugar. The protein content is three times higher than mature milk, because it is rich in the antibodies being passed from the mother. These antibodies protect your baby and act as a natural laxative, helping your baby pass the first stool called meconium. At least give your baby the first 3 days…and then see what happens after. I know many women who simply cannot breastfeed, and I’m not judging them or anyone. All I’m saying is that breast really is best, (:

Soooo, soon to follow are these topics: Infant acid reflux or GER, pumping and nursing in public, cloth diapering, and attachment parenting.

My breastfeeding experience.

Please forgive my punctuation errors. I hate bad grammar and punctuation just as much as the next person, but as a mommy, I don’t have a lot of time to proofread.

Before I even became pregnant, I always knew that I would breastfeed my children. Most women around me breastfed their children, so it was just kind of the normal thing to do. So,when I became pregnant, I had every intention of breastfeeding. I knew it would be hard. But I knew that it was absolutely the best thing I could do for my daughter’s health.

I am one of those people who does tons of research on everything that I become committed to. I don’t think anyone in my life was surprised at the endless amounts of literature I read about pregnancy, labor and delivery, breastfeeding, attachment parenting, and child development. HEck, I even took a Biology of Women course at my college. I thought it would be fun! Haha, and it was, sort of. (turns out the worst idea is to take a class like that….I had many nightmares after learning about EVERY single genetic disease or condition a child can have.)

So, my research on breastfeeding only told me what I already knew. That “breast is best”, not only for mother, but for baby, as well. I won’t go into every single detail about why breast is best, because then this blog would be a book!

Ok…so Isabela was born and FINALLY they bring her to the recovery room. You can see that moment here.

I was so speechless and humbled as I was holding my firstborn. The first thing I wanted to do was hold her skin to skin. Skin to skin contact is usually the first thing that “they” recommend mommies do, after giving birth. The warmth from mommy’s skin helps to regulate babies temperature, and it also makes for a great bonding moment. So, finally, my doula asked me if I was ready to try breastfeeding. We went through the motions, but my little tiny wasn’t
hungry. She was tired and content to just sleep in my arms.

Ok, so several hours later (around 10:30PM), I was finally in my room. Chris had to go home and get some stuff he forgot, so he left the hospital. Because I had a Cesarean, I wasn’t allowed to be alone in the room with my baby! What!! So, they took her to the nursery, and I felt like my heart was broken in two. When Chris came back, he asked them to keep her in the nursery til morning so I could recover. I had a real problem with that, because I felt like I
didn’t get to spend any time holding her yet! So, the nursery nurse reassured me that she would bring her in every 1- 2 hours to nurse, and that it would be a good idea for me to get some rest. I must have been really exhausted because I didn’t put up much of an argument. The nurse took Isabela to the nursery around midnight…..SOOOOOOO

so much for rest. The nurses checked on me every hour, and I could barely sleep. I wanted to kill Chris as I heard him contently snoring. I did fall asleep eventually, though, and woke up with a JOLT. It was almost 5 am!! Where was my baby!! All I could think was that she hadn’t eaten yet. I felt horrible and so sad that my little tiny was so far away from me.

Before I could buzz the nurse, I could hear a baby crying, and the nurse brought my baby in to me! She said, “I’m sorry…we’re a little late.” HA! I was too eager to hold her to be mean to the nurse.

So, this nurse then began to “help” me learn how to breastfeed. Today, I know that the nurse didn’t know a single thing about breastfeeding. She was doing everything the lactation consultant tells you not to! Of course, I was so tired and drugged, I couldn’t think straight.

Isabela was really crying. Poor tiny was hungry. And, she didn’t know how to latch on. The nurse kept pushing Isa’s head towards me. Thinking about it now, makes me want to slap her! Finally, Isa latched on and began to eat. The nurse kept asking me if it hurt , and I kept saying no. She then kept telling me that it it didn’t hurt then I wasn’t doing it right!I was too tired to argue, though, and just ignored her.

Isa turned out to be a good eater in the hospital. She would latch on and eat for about 40 minutes or so. And, I learned that breastfeeding only hurts when the baby latches on incorrectly. Isabela decided she would latch on correctly all through our hospital stay. Only when we got home and when my milk came in did Isabela began to have problems.

So, tomorrow, I will post the remainder of this blog. It’s pretty long, and I want you all to have something to look forward to!