Breastfeeding and Holidays

Welcome Carnival of Breastfeeding readers! This month’s topic is taking care of yourself during the holidays. Be sure to read the other Carnival posts listed below.

Before my La Leche League meeting in November, I hadn’t even thought of the possible difficulties of breastfeeding during the holidays. Even when they mentioned that “holiday weaning” would be the topic for the meeting that day, I thought it was kind of silly. Why would my baby wean just because it’s the holidays? It’s just like any other time of year and if anything moms might have more time to be around their babies during the holidays. The information I learned in my meeting invaluable and entirely changed my perspective on breastfeeding during the holidays. I feel I am now equipped with the tools to prevent holiday weaning. Here are some of my favorite tips.

Sling, sling, sling! Of course wearing your baby is a great idea where ever you go, but during the holidays it’s especially useful. You know how it is when you’re with family and everyone wants to hold the baby and next thing you know it’s two hours later and they baby comes back to you screeeeeeeeaming bloody murder. Quite often the baby has been hungry for a while, but which ever family member that had the babe at the time thinks “Oh, I can soothe this baby. I’ve soothed my babies. No need to inform the baby’s mother.” No, you can not soothe my baby. I can’t even soothe my baby without the boobs, so don’t even try. Wearing the baby means less people take them away from you. I’ve noticed that it means less touching too which is always an advantage during cold/flu season.
Bring babe with! This kind of goes along the same line as the first one because you’ll probably wear them in a sling while you’re out. Christmas shopping with a baby in a car seat or stroller sounds awkward, bulky, and stressful. I wear Peanut in my Sleepy Wrap all the time when we go shopping. It may feel tempting to leave the kiddo with someone else while you go shop when you have to drag all the gear with you, but in a sling it’s no big deal for them to tag along. Personally, I like having my little Peanut tag along. She’s mah sidekick!
Babies make perfect guests! What do you do when you’re invited to a no-children holiday function that you really want to go to? Bring them anyway! Well, to an extent. Most of the time when the invites say no kids they really mean no kids that walk and talk and run around like idiots and break things. If you show up with a little baby in a sling they’re just going to say awwwww how cuuuute. If you’re really worried about it, call ahead and talk to the host(ess) about bringing the baby and express that you’re only showing up babe in arms. If you do need (or want) to go to a holiday party sans baby, just keep it short enough that you’re back before the next feeding.

So good luck with your babe and the breastfeeding adventure. There’s no reason you should be tricked into weaning before you’re both ready. So remember breastfeeding is all about the supply and demand. Happy holidays!

Read these other Carnival of Breastfeeding posts:

Cave Mother: A Mother’s Christmas

Mama Knows Breast: A Breastfeeding Holiday Poem

Chronicles of a Nursing Mom: Don’t Forget the Pump!

Breastfeeding 1-2-3: Breastfeeding and Dehydration

Mommy News & Views: The Holidays and Being a Breastfeeding Mom

Hobo Mama: Breastfeeding and The Holidays

The Accidental Pharmacist: Motherhood Statement

Happy Bambino: How To Take Care of Ourselves During the Holidays

Breastfeeding Mums: Breastfeeding and the Holidays

Motherwear: Taking Care of Yourself During the Holidays]

Breastfeeding Moms Unite: Taking Care of a High Needs Baby During the Holidays

Blacktating: Advice for the Holidays

Just a Stay at Home Mom

We’ve all heard the story of the woman who is wasting her education being just a stay at home mom. I can’t tell you how offended I feel when people say I’m just a stay at home mom. I don’t understand the purpose of that word. Why do people feel the need to downgrade what I do? Yet even when I feel this way, I find myself slipping at calling someone just a stay at home mom. Being a stay at home mom is so much more difficult than people realize, but I already make noise about that particular subject too often. I want to examine where this word just comes from.

When people think of the word feminism, they likely think of women who want to be treated like men. There are many stereotypes of the woman with short hair who wants to work in manual labor or be in the army. What you don’t probably realize is that feminism is actually about choice. Once upon a time, women couldn’t get an education. Women couldn’t work outside the home. The only option for women was to stay home and take care of the children and the home. Feminism came about because some women wanted to do more. Emphasis on some.

Don’t get me wrong, I do want to work outside of my home one day. I also want to be the one to raise my children. I never want to look back and regret that I was working instead of watching and helping my children grow. Being a mother and wife is my first career. The majority of people change their occupation multiple times throughout their lives. This is just my first occupation–and the most important of them all.

Back to feminism. While there were women out fighting for the right to chose what they do with their lives, there were women in the background that were happy with staying at home. Not to say that they didn’t want a choice–it’s just that if they were given the choice, they would still chose to stay home. The purpose of feminism is having the choice.

In our society, young girls are brought up being told that they can be anything. You could be a doctor! You could be a lawyer! You could be The President! So what do you want to be? How often do you hear a little girl say “I want to be a mommy!”? Almost all little girls do, but they don’t see it as a career choice. They just assume that they’ll be a mommy and have a career. No one thinks of being a mother as a career. What other hobby do you do that takes your whole heart, requires your full attention 24 hours a day, and make you want to pull your hair out? If anything, it sounds like a job to me.

So please, try to make an effort to stop saying just a stay at home mom. Being a stay at home mom is so much more than sitting on the couch watching TV. As for those women who are “wasting their education” being a stay at home mom, did you ever stop to think that part of parenting is being educated so that you can educate your children? Also, having a degree means you’re more likely to make educated decisions about regarding your children–which I believe is a very important part of parenting. There is nothing just about being any kind of parent–especially a stay at home mom (or dad for that matter).

Oh, The Joys Of Laundry

Laundry, laundry, laundry. It’s the one thing that must continue to be done even when the world around you has gone awry.

As many of my childless peers do not know, babies=Holy Crap Laundry. Srsly, I wasn’t aware that I could have this much laundry. So, with my Post Giving Birth In My Fricking Bathroom Brain, it was difficult to remember when I might or might not have started some laundry. Since we are currently living in my in-law’s basement and they are strategically placed near the appliances which clean my clothing, my mother-in-law often helped with the laundry.

At first, I felt bad. I tried to finish my own laundry, but alas, I forgot. I resorted to setting a timer on my phone. This is when I found out our washer is a dirty, mischievous liar. It claims that it takes 52 minutes to wash clothes, so I set my alarm for 1 hour. After the alarm going off and me dinking around for a bit, I go upstairs only to find it has “8 minutes” left. Dirty, mischievous liar.

So on she went with finishing my laundry. She even folds the clothes! And on I went feeling distraught that she was forced to do my laundry. And on she went saying she didn’t mind. It kind of became our “thing.”

Today, I had a genuine plan to switch the laundry before leaving for class. Of course, being the Lindstrom I am, I was running late. I realized when I was half way to Curtis’s work that I forgot, so I called her and asked her to switch it over (mostly to be polite). She was a little short over the phone, but I figured that she was just busy. Then I come home to unfolded laundry… so this begs the question, is my mother-in-law mad at me?

On a semi-related topic. Curtis was changing a diaper today and Peanut pooped all over the changing mat. This results in more laundry, but it also results in ROFLMAO!!!

Mothers Day Pictures

As part of everyone’s Mother’s Day gift, they got a picture of a smiling Peanut. Each recipient got their “own smile” meaning that this particular picture of her smiling will forever be attached to their name. I don’t think a single one of them understood this, but I thought it was neat. Here are the pictures.

Great Grandma Jo’s smile.

Grandma Fay’s smile.

Grandma Debbie’s smile.

Mommy’s smile.

Swing Swing Swing

We bought Peanut a swing.. I think she likes it. She smiled so big at me earlier today that I thought I was going to cry. It feels like she’s a real person now.

I’m amazed at how happy I’ve been feeling. I figured I would get major Postpartum Depression, but there’s no signs of it yet. I do feel kind of lonely. I just wish I had friends to hang out with. I mean, there’s the boys, but they’re not into the whole baby thing too much. Then my mom hangs out with me on her days off, but I feel like I don’t allow her any time to relax. Then Curtis is fricking awesome. I mean, seriously, I won the friggin’ lottery when it comes to husbands. He’s not home as much as I am though. I wish I had friends that were girls. Them having babies would be cool too, but oh well.

I want to work out. I really want to get on an eliptical and go at it. I should get a gym membership. Those cost money though. We don’t really have money right now.

Here’s some pictures of Easter and such!

Peanut in her pretty Easter dress before she peed all over it.

Great Grandpa Ed holding Peanut.

Great Grandma Jo holding Peanut.

Grandpa David holding Peanut (he has to wear a cloth over his clothes because smokes).

Four generations.

Peanut makes funny faces first thing in the morning.

Kerri wanted to be in the pictures too.

Peanut got a pretty bow!

She likes the Baby Einstein toy.

Lounging outside.