Posts Tagged ‘nursing’

Leading Lady Review and Giveaway

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012

There’s been a rash of bra-fitting revelations on the internet recently (for a really good laugh check out Mandy’s), where everyone realized wearing a bra in the right size is SO MUCH BETTER. I’ve been thinking about getting fitted for a long time – it’s one of those things I’ve got on my “To Do Now That I’m A Real Grown Up And Stuff” list. But because I’m still nursing I figured I’d have to suffer through a few more months of horrible saggy chesticles before I could upgrade.

And THEN I got an email from Leading Lady that said even though they knew I was weaning Caroline, they loved my blog and thought might enjoy their nursing bras and would I be interested in doing a review?

How about “Yes” and “Hell Yes” and “HOLY COW this might be the best opportunity I’ve ever gotten from blogging.”

I used the size calculator on the Leading Lady site to figure out my size (they even have a cool printable tape measure in case your kids ran off with yours months ago) and told them if we were going for function I could really use something for Stroller Strides but with Valentine’s Day coming up it sure would be nice to have something that wasn’t hideous, pokey, and ripped.

They sent me a Sport Wirefree Nursing Bra and a Lace-Cup Wirefree Nursing Bra. I love them both SO MUCH I actually took pictures of myself wearing them to show you. Then I thought better than to post topless pictures of myself on my baby blog and deleted them. You’re welcome. But I can assure you they make my boobs look awesome. The sport bra really helped control the, uh, bouncing problem I had when it came to jumping jacks at Stroller Strides. It’s the first bra with a full sling (meaning even when you fold the outer part down there’s still fabric across your boob) that I’ve EVER liked – the opening is large enough to nurse without having to yank it all over the place. The lace bra is GORGEOUS and not even the tiniest bit scratchy. It blows the horrible “sexy” underwire nursing bra I bought at a cheap big-box store out of the water. It was so comfortable I even slept in it. I sort of can’t believe I hadn’t heard of Leading Lady before, but will absolutely be ordering from them again.

Leading Lady is a family owned company that’s been selling nursing, maternity and full-figured bras for more than 70 YEARS so they really know their stuff. Their nursing bras range in size from 34B to 48F and their full-figured bras are available from 34A to 56G – which if you ask me includes a lot of women that wouldn’t really like to be considered “full-figured” *ahem ME ahem*. The site offers bras, tanks and sleepwear. They have a great selection – how clever is a nursing bra with a hidden pattern for the baby? You can search by size, type and category, including specialty categories like latex-free and organic. They even have a Breastfeeding A-Z Guide on their site full of really great information. And if you were wondering, I think their prices are extremely reasonable, especially considering what nursing bras from other companies cost. And right now new Facebook fans will receive 10% off by liking Leading Lady between now & Feb. 14, while all fans of Leading Lady can tweet “I Love @LeadingLadyBras” on Feb. 14 and receive a special 10% off code.

Yes, I’m gushing. I promise there was no gushing required when they offered to send me a bra to try (they’re probably super embarrassed by me right now), but I truly can’t help it. I’m so excited to find a company I like so much, has such a great product AND agreed to let me give YOU a free bra!

That’s right, you could win an e-certificate good for one free bra from the Leading Lady collection PLUS free shipping.

Just leave a comment on this post telling me why you NEED a new bra.

For extra entries, you can follow @LeadingLadyBras on Twitter and like Leading Lady on Facebook or you can follow me on Twitter or like bebehblog on Facebook . Just leave a comment telling me what you did (or what you already do). So if you did all five things it would be five comments.

Right now they only ship to the US and can’t ship to P.O. boxes so giveaway is limited to those who qualify (sorry Canadians!) No duplicate comments or cheating of any kind. I’ll draw a winner using Random.org sometime this weekend.

 Disclaimer: Leading Lady provided me with 2 bras so I could give an honest review for my post, all opinions are my own. No other compensation was provided. They didn’t even ask me to include product links or make you like them for the giveaway. Leading Lady is good people.

My Week(65) in iPhone Photos

Saturday, January 28th, 2012

Oh look, another week in iPhone photos.

Sunday:

Since when can my tiny baby climb LADDERS?

Caroline would party all day. E not so much.

What, isn't that how YOU watch football?

Monday:

Three toddlers all too busy to talk to me

Tempting, but no.

So healthy it's almost disgusting

Tuesday:

Tunnel of love

We ride the elevator at the mall UP and then DOWN, for no reason but he loves it.

Lounging

Wednesday:

These would look great with a set of 20's, Mom. (I have no idea what that even means)

Oh no, a T-Rex is attacking town hall!

Sitting in a chair: Ur doin' it rong.

Heeeeeere's CAROLINE

Best purchase of the year: $30 library cart from the education store at the mall as a bookshelf/ toyshelf

Thursday:

HUGE turnout at Stroller Strides for the franchise's 2nd birthday

Leading the parade at Target

Obsessed

Friday:

He told me he was going camping.

Really, Christmas Tree Shops? You think this is a DEAL?

No one is excited to be at BJ's, including me.

3rd birthday party planning is a go.

Saturday:

If my husband ever wonders if this is his kid, I will show him this picture

Five Guys, duh.

Apparently my baby WANTS to nurse with a blanket over her head. Weirdo.

For the rest of the weekend I’ll be watching terrible reality TV, arguing with a 3 year old over the exact length of nap time, and encouraging Caroline’s new habit of spinning in circles until she gets so dizzy she falls over. Mom of the year, RIGHT HERE.

Did you take any camera phone photos this week? Link up with one or lots using the linky below and grab the code (so it shows on your blog too!) over at Amy’s . It’s really fun!

 

Wordless Wednesday: Babies Having Babies Edition

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

Caroline thinks she’s feeding her baby. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that’s not quite how it works.

Support Breastfeeding Honesty

Thursday, January 19th, 2012

I talk about my boobs a lot, especially here on my blog. It wasn’t something I set out to do – YES! I know what will make me a raging success on the internet! Talking about my SORE, LEAKING NIPPLES! – but when you are breastfeeding a newborn it just sort of happens. In the past three years, I’ve said the word “breast” more times the day than I’ve said my own name. BREAST.

Back in the beginning, when I was really struggling, I spent hours online reading forums and message boards and websites full of breastfeeding advice. Do this, don’t do this, try this, try that, give it time, see a doctor. Some of it was helpful, some of it was scary, some of it was eye-rollingly stupid, and sometimes it stressed me out. But one thing I found invaluable was real-life stories from real-life women. Living, breathing moms with crazy hormones and crying babies and stretched out abdominal muscles. I laughed at their leaky mishaps, cried when their babies were hungry, and sympathized with their pain. Those stories – not the experts – were what got me through the rough start and into happy, 15 month nursing relationship with my first child. I STILL turn to the internet when I have a breastfeeding question and find often myself answering them for others when they pop up on Twitter or Facebook.

There is some worry in the lactivist community that talking to much about the hard parts of breastfeeding instead of just the warm fuzzies and rainbows will discourage women from ever trying to breastfeed. They fear that too many jokes about bleeding nipples and piranha babies will scare mothers away and into the welcoming arms of the nearest can of formula. It is often implied – and sometimes said outright – that it shouldn’t hurt, it shouldn’t be a struggle, it should come naturally, and if our eyes fill up with tears of pain and angst rather than tears of joy as we latch our babies then we are doing it wrong. Shhhhh…don’t talk about that. We’re trying to recruit more women to Team Breastfeeding.

I say that’s a mistake and a disservice to women. This isn’t shirts versus skins – it’s just mothers and babies.

In fact, I say the opposite is true. I say the honesty has led to more breastfeeding. Talking about your personal experience with breastfeeding should ALWAYS be encouraged, no matter how successful or long that experience was. Every single conversation about breastfeeding normalizes it. It becomes just another thing we talk about when we’re discussing babies, like diapers and spit up and tiny socks and why are their nails so SHARP? I have talked about every single bit of my breastfeeding journey, from my giant engorged porn start boobs to using a nipple shield to dealing with thrush and finally, FINALLY having the kind of idyllic, peaceful nursing relationship the books tell you about. As far as I know, I have yet to scare someone so badly they vow to never nurse a baby.

What I DO know is many of my friends who struggled to breastfeed their first child are trying again with their second baby. They are nervous and worried and cautiously optimistic, but they are TRYING. A mother’s feelings about breastfeeding can be so fraught with both internal and external sources of guilt that stopping or quitting, even if it’s the best choice for their family, can be heartbreaking. I like to think my constant willingness to engage in honest boob-talk had a teeny tiny bit to do with their decision.

I am so so proud of these women, whether they try for one day or for a thousand. They are brave for putting it all out there (heh) again and they are all amazing moms. The bottom line is because mothers have found more information and more support and more honesty about breastfeeding there are more babies getting more breastmilk. And isn’t that what lactivism is all about?

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This post has been in my drafts folder for a few weeks while I worked out exactly how to say what I wanted. Just yesterday I saw the Support with Integrity Pledge posted on my friend Gina’s site. I’m thrilled to see over 1,000 people have signed it already and vowed to support breastfeeding moms without judgment or criticism. You can check it out and sign the pledge by clicking on the badge below:
Support with Integrity

3 Months To Go

Monday, January 9th, 2012

I AM GOING TO TALK ABOUT MY BOOBS A LOT NOW SO IF YOU ARE MY MALE SECOND COUSIN BY MARRIAGE MAYBE YOU SHOULD SKIP THIS POST TODAY. THANKS.

Yes, that actually was entirely necessary. Jimmy.

Breastfeeding Caroline has been cake. I learned so much the first time around that even when things were challenging I knew how to ask for what I needed (nipple cream) and how to do what worked for me (crying in the shower while hand expressing milk) and it took days rather than months for us to find our groove. I am so thrilled we made it a full year of exclusive breastfeeding, especially because I struggled so much after BlogHer I thought we might not. For me, breastfeeding is both a wonderful bonding experience and a wonderful chance to sit down several times a day. I am never going to look back on my baby’s babyhood and think “Damn, breastfeeding was such a mistake”.

That being said, I have decided to start weaning Caroline. Yes I know she is only a little more than a year old. Yes I know what the WHO recommends. Yes I know I don’t HAVE to. Yes I know there is no medical reason to wean. And I don’t need anyone to talk me out of trying – although I welcome your opinion – because my reasons are totally selfish and for once I am ALLOWING myself to be selfish. I am a selfish, selfish mama who wants her body to herself for a little while after three and a half years of pregnancy, breastfeeding or BOTH AT THE SAME TIME.

In March, I am going on an honest-to-goodness vacation with my husband to several tropical beaches by way of Princess Cruises. It is a Big Deal for us, our first vacation since having kids, and the only vacation longer than a weekend we’ve taken since our honeymoon. My folks are going to watch the kids and the dog and the house for us (cue panicked cleaning of closets and kitchen drawers because OMG my parents will be in my house without my supervision) and since they’re doing us such a huge favor I’d prefer to leave them with a baby who ISN’T expecting anyone to whip out a boob to help her get to sleep. Also, right now my body is still making enough milk for a baby who nurses 4 times a day (plus 2 or 3 times a night) and that would mean bringing a pump on vacation to keep my chest from exploding. Let me tell you, there is nothing sexier than whipping out my double electric Medela for a good milking before bed. Even just cutting back on the nursing would be better than nothing, although I’m hoping for a mostly weaned baby.

The problem is I have no idea how to go about it.

Weaning Evan was something I thought about constantly for months but when it happened it was sort of anticlimactic. He went from nursing all the time to giving it up completely in just a few weeks, but that was because of a pregnancy-related drop in my supply. I do NOT want to be pregnant on our vacation – it would put quite the damper on my goal of drinking my weight in pina coladas. But is there a natural way to decrease my supply? I suppose I could just do the OPPOSITE of all the things the experts suggest when you’re trying to increase your supply, but not drinking water, not sleeping, not eating extra calories and not taking care of myself seems like a poor choice. I have read sage can decrease milk supply and I happen to have a bunch of it lying around from our summer CSA but that sounds like an old wives tale. I know nursing moms are told not to take antihistamines because they can decrease supply, but do I really want to take a bunch of drugs while I’m still breastfeeding? (Short answer: no)

And then, despite what I said above about letting myself be selfish there’s the guilt I’m going to traumatize my baby if I stop. Caroline has always been a really independent little girl and she rarely nurses for comfort. She is affectionate and cuddly even when we’re not nursing so I’m not worried about losing all our mommy-daughter time. But she still has a midnight feeding (and sometimes a 2 am and a 4 am and a 5 am feeding) and those are HARD to drop. She still cries and tugs on my shirt if we go too long without nursing. Despite the fact that yesterday she had two mini waffles, a donut, an apple, blueberries, a Babybel cheese and half a yogurt for breakfast she still wanted to nurse for a minute before we left the house. Does she NEED it or does she just like the familiar? How can I possibly know? I’ve got 3 months to figure it out.

Truthfully, the period of time in a baby’s life where they are either breast or bottle fed is SO SMALL in the scheme of parenting (unless you are amongst the very most extreme extended breast feeders) that cutting her off a few months short of where she would have weaned naturally isn’t going to keep her from getting into Harvard some day. (I am going to repeat that to myself over and over and over for the next 3 months.) And when I come home from vacation if she wants to start nursing again I would be totally OK with that. I LIKE breastfeeding, as a thing. In general. When it’s not making me sick to my stomach with anxiety about leaving. Again. So right now I need all the weaning advice and anecdotes I can get.