My Breastfeeding Journey

I'm a Sisterhood of Motherhood Partner and a sponsored blog partner, but all opinions here are my own. Please see below for additional disclosure.

My breastfeeding journey has been a long one. I was very uneducated when I first started my journey and of course inexperienced. I had read very little about breastfeeding because I was more worried about giving birth and everything I did read was either hard to follow or very discouraging. When I announced my decision to try breastfeeding when I was pregnant, it was returned with very little support.

When my daughter first latched, something felt off. I couldn't explain it. I also thought no one would be allowed in the delivery room, so I didn't let her nurse as long as she wanted so we could rush upstairs to post-partum so everyone could see her.

The day following her delivery she was very sleepy and had trouble attaching for feedings. I talked to the lactation consultant who wanted me to use a nipple shield and the football hold, both of which I could never figure out. I also didn't know I should wake her to nurse every 2-3 hours so my milk could come in. Her first night home was rough. She wanted to stay cuddled right next to me, so I didn't sleep a wink. Those first few days home were the worst. I had read that a good latch would hurt initially, but shouldn't continue to hurt during feedings. But hers did, a sharp wincing pain that was so bad I was to the point where I would dread feeding her. I found that lying down to nurse helped her latch in a way that wasn't painful for me.

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Enter to #win the Double Blessings $25 Gift Certificate #Giveaway, Ends 7/17 #breastfeeding
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Happy 3 Months, Peanut!

Can you believe he is 3 months old? Or that I still haven't posted his birth story? It's written down, I promise. 

Why I Like Nursing Canopies {Booby Trapper Review & Giveaway, Ends 6/3}

Disclosure: I received this product as part of an advertorial.

I was never a fan of nursing canopies (or covers) with my daughter. We never really used one because we were at home so much, so she never got use to it. So I was always very uncomfortable about nursing in public. I still prefer a good nursing shirt and that's it, but what if you aren't wearing a proper nursing shirt?

I am all for if you are comfortable not covering yourself. You shouldn't have to! You are just feeding your baby. I wish I had that confidence. I feel the need to make others around me feel comfortable and when they are people who you are with, that need is probably greater. It shouldn't be this way, but this is my issue. Hopefully one day I'll get over it.

Making Breastfeeding Fashionable {Milk Nursingwear Review + #SpecialMom Giveaway Hop}

I received products from Milk Nursingwear complimentary for the purposes of review. All opinions are 100% my own.

I don't know about you, but fashion isn't high on my priorities when breastfeeding. I just look for clothing that makes the girls easily accessible, but sometimes you want to look nice. A few weeks ago we had my son's Sip & See. Family and friends came over to my sister-in-law's house to "Sip" some drinks and "See" the baby now that we knew he was a boy. Being only 5 weeks post-partum at that time, I knew I would need something accessible AND fashionable.

Hotmilk Nursing Bra Review + Discount!

Disclosure: I received this product as part of an advertorial complimentary from #Hotmilk. All opinions are 100% my own.


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I am nursing my son and I'm not having any issues like I did with SweetPea. In fact, I am having the opposite problems! He latched on and had a SUPER strong latch. I also have an abundance of milk, which means all of my old nursing bras will not fit! Plus, I have never owned a cute nursing bra. So, when the opportunity to review a nursing bra through Hotmilk came my way, I definitely jumped all over it. These bras are absolutely gorgeous! Nothing like my plain jane bras I had with my daughter.

Nursing In Public can be easy with MILK Nursingwear

I received products from milk nursingwear for the purposes of review. All opinions are 100% my own.

milk nursingwear - stylish, breastfeeding attire
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When I was nursing Sweet Pea, I never liked nursing in public. I felt ashamed because from the beginning I let others make me feel that way. I was doing nothing wrong, I was just feeding my baby when she was hungry, and being a terrible pumper, there really was no other option.

When I received the opportunity to work with MILK Nursingwear and review one of their very stylish nursing tops, I was extremely excited. Although I will be going through my insurance to get a better breast pump, I am not counting on pumping working for me. My mom and my sister both had hospital grade pumps and neither were able to pump very much.

milk nursingwear review

I love all of milk nursingwear's adorable nursing tops and honestly had trouble picking one out! I finally decided and received the contemporary knot top and I absolutely LOVE it. The first thing you'll notice about MILK Nursingwear is how soft the material is. I love how stylish and easy to maneuver the top I received is! My younger sister-in-law said she loved my shirt and then was surprised when I showed her it was a nursing shirt.

I can't wait to wear this shirt with my newest edition due in March. It's comfortable, breathable, and I feel that I will be able to nurse discreetly without a cover. This is a huge deal since Sweet Pea was never a big fan of them and honestly, neither was I.

Did you ever have issues with nursing in public? What do you think about milk nursingwear? Do you like their style and convenience?

Now enter the giveaway! :D
Milk Nursingwear Giveaway

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Lip Tie - What is it?

I received an email today from a mother who thanked me because she came across my blog and had to google lip tie, but realized this may have been the reason she had issues during her breastfeeding journey. Then I realized that although I may have mentioned lip tie, I never discussed what it is.

I was looking at your blog and read about your daughter having a lip tie. I wanted to say thank you, because I never heard of that condition so I googled it. That's when I realised my daughter has the same issue. I managed to bf her until she was 18months but it was sooooo hard and I was still feeling guilty about it. So thank you! If I have another baby in the future at least I will know! :)

Breastfeeding a Baby with Lip Tie

SweetPea self-weaned at 14 months. I had trouble with her latch in the beginning and constant issues with supply. My daughter was always on the lower side of the dreaded percentiles. And I blamed myself constantly. The horrible mommy guilts had sunk in.

When SweetPea was around 18 months old, I came across a blog (and for the life of me I can not remember it now) that talked about lip tie and included pictures. I now know what my daughter had that made our breastfeeding relationship more difficult, that I believe contributed to my PPD, but now I know for my next baby and ways to boost my supply, so I won't get as frustrated with myself.

SweetPea went undiagnosed but I could have saved myself a ton of heartache and stress. If you are having issues with your baby's latch or your supply, I would talk to a doctor about upper labial tie (which is the scientific name of lip tie). Now there isn't much they know about the issue. But I think just knowing your child has a lip tie, can help with the stress levels, which can ultimately help with the breastfeeding bond in general.

What is an upper labial tie?

Inside your mouth, there is a small fold of tissue which runs between your upper lip and gum (you can feel it with your tongue). This is called the maxillary labial frenulum (or frenum). Most people have no significant frenulum attachment, but sometimes this frenulum attaches further down the gum, or runs between the front teeth and attaches behind them, causing restricted movement of the upper lip. It's similar to tongue tie, but involving the upper lip and gum instead. An upper labial tie can occur on its own or in conjunction with a tongue tie. It's also possible to have a lower labial tie (involving the bottom lip and gum).

Breastfeeding an Infant with Lip Tie

This picture is the best I could get of my daughter, but there are better ones online.

Depending on the severity of the lip tie, they may want to clip the frenulum. Like with any child surgery, make sure you have done your research on all the risks involved, also research doctors, as well as the procedure that will be done. We worked through our lip tie. With the help of breastfeeding cookies, fenugreek, and frequent feedings. There are lip ties that are severe than hers. Just consult your lactation consultant or pediatrician.

When should you consult a physician?

You are the mama and ultimately know what is best. So if you feel you need to talk to a doctor about it and even seek a second opinion, then you do what you feel is best. Trust those mommy instincts. Other times to talk to your doctor or lactation consultant are if your latch is painful. In the beginning, the initial latch on might be painful. As the baby nurses though, it should not continue to be painful. Try repositioning your baby. After years of working in child care, my main issue was how I was holding SweetPea to nurse. Baby and mommy should be tummy to tummy.
You should also talk to your doctor if you feel your child isn't urinating enough. Breastfed babies can sometimes go 5 to 7 days with out pooping, some poop every hour, but they should, according to KellyMom, have one wet diaper for each day of life (1 on day one, 2 on day two…). But once mom’s milk comes in, expect 5-6+ wet diapers every 24 hours. To feel what a sufficiently wet diaper is like, pour 3 tablespoons (45 mL) of water into a clean diaper. A piece of tissue in a disposable diaper will help you determine if the diaper is wet.

I hope you find this helpful. My favorite resource for breastfeeding advice is KellyMom. Feel free to share your breastfeeding experience or questions in the comments below! :)

2012: A Year In Review

The year started warm. So warm we went to the park and took this picture:

In February, I started watching my friend's daughter
who is a month younger than Sweet Pea.
What a crazy ride taking care of two toddlers has been.

At the end of February/beginning of March,
Sweet Pea started walking and
our breastfeeding journey came to an end.

Her 15 month check-up was March 11 but
I'm a terrible mom who didn't write down the stats.

We also did silly stuff like this:

In May we had a yard sale at the Hubby's store.

Got into a car accident at the beginning of June.

Both the girls were in the car. Scary and life changing. I still feel guilty everyday although everyone was okay. And there isn't a day that goes by where I don't worry whether they remember or it scarred them and whether my husband has resentment towards me for putting our already limited incomed family on an even tighter financial hold.

We bought a Saturn Vue from Car Max and THE NEXT DAY the transmission went out.

But looking back, it was a blessing because I have NO IDEA how we would have been able to afford it.

We went to the lake a few times.
And Sweet Pea still didn't care of it.

Sweet Pea went to the zoo for the first time!

The Hubby and I celebrated 5 years of marriage. :)
But we have no pictures of us together and celebrated by going to his friend's birthday party. :/

She also got HFM and a UTI at almost the same time. :/

I decided to really make my blog public that August. I wanted to maybe make some money, hopefully get some free stuff to review, but most importantly, I wanted to have a hobby that I enjoyed. I was home all the time without a car and we live out in the middle of no where. I needed some kind of social interaction, even if was just through a computer screen.

I was able to provide my first endorsed review.

One of Hubby's store credit card numbers was stolen in 2007, he didn't even try to take the proper steps to fight this issue. Credit companies kept calling and calling. but he ignored them. He went to court and the judge told him he should settle and that it didn't look good for him because apparently in the paper work he signed when applying for the card, it said they could sell the debt. So we got put into an even tighter financial hold.

September we went to Florida with my in-laws. And a great time was had by all.
You can read about vacation HERE and HERE.

♥ these pics on Instagram

Just recently, I reached 400 GFC followers. And it feels amazing. I started at 10 and in only a few months, I feel like when I put my many ramblings out into the vast space of the Internet, I am now actually heard.

My car accident was a blessing in disguise. I got a terrible bruise under my arm from the seat belt.
Under the bruise I found small knot. No biggie, the bruise was massive. I had a regular scheduled OB/GYN visit shortly after the accident, she said to keep any eye on it and if the swelling didn't go down, I should come back. I had a physical scheduled in September so I figured I would talk to my doctor about it then if I didn't notice any improvement.
The doctor said he thought it was just the bruise but that I should go get a mammogram.

My baby girl turned two.

I put off scheduling the mammogram. I have no idea why but the swelling was going down and the knot was getting smaller so I just wasn't worried. Then I noticed another small, lump a little further away.
The 18th would be the day of my mammogram but they rescheduled until after the first of the year.
I'm nervous and the anticipation of not knowing is killing me. My sister had a mammogram when I was around the age of ten or so making her like 19. Nothing was wrong, they said that is just the way her body is. Hopefully the odds are in my favor. But the not knowing is the worst of it.

But a good thing to know going into the New Year I am 25 lbs lighter than I was at the start of 2012 and I can wear my wedding rings again. :)
You can read about my weight loss journey HERE.

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A crazy year.

Awesome things happened and awful things happened. This year has been a roller coaster of emotion.

So, how did 2012 treat you?

Evenflo Comfort Select Performance Dual Auto-Cycling Breast Pump Review

I feel that in order to do this review, I must give you a little back story first.
My daughter had undiagnosed lip tie. I did not know such a thing existed but now realized this is why she had so much trouble latching in the beginning.

Anyways, we worked through and I decided to start pumping (so her daddy could feed her) when she was about 6 weeks old. My sister-in-law gave me this breast pump. So at least there was no out of pocket for this. But I believe it could be the problem with why my sister-in-law's milk was never able to come in (her daughter was born 6 weeks premature).

About The Evenflo Comfort Select Performance Dual Auto-Cycling Breast Pump

- Supposed increased number of cycles per minute with a gradual vacuum curve for gentler, more effective pumping - compared to previous pump
- Tighter range adjustment to increase production on lower settings
- Dual motors in the dual pump for maximum production on both breasts
- Adjusted AC/DC adapter to deliver consistent power
- Does not contain bishenol-A (BPA)

What I Liked

- The bag that the pump comes in is nice and compact. There is one “cooler” compartment to keep the milk cold and freezer packs to go with it and another compartment for other parts.
- The pump was comfortable to use.
- The price - This pump retails for around $40 which is awesome as far as breast pumps go.
- BPA Free
- You can use the pump on batteries or electrical power, which makes it very portable.

What I Didn’t Like

- The pump was very loud. Until I did some research, I thought all pumps were this loud. If I had to pump at work,I could never do it discreetly. Anytime I tried to pump it would wake Sweet Pea up and she would cry if she was awake. PLUS I couldn’t hear the TV above the sound of the pump and who wants to do NOTHING while pumping.

- You can adjust the suction, but you can’t adjust the speed. Doing some research, I found that with high-end double electric pumps, moms can adjust the speed on a dial. With manual pumps, you can adjust the speed manually. But with this pump, there was no opportunity to adjust the speed at all. And I feel this is the reason I could never create a let down. It only worked if I had just stopped nursing.

- The motor for the pump is attached to the bottles/horns and is very heavy. This creates a few problems:
There are little placements for you to place the bottles in and if you do that, the bottles won’t tip over when placed on the counter. However, if you forget to put them in the placements, your pump is going to topple over and possibly spill the milk out all over the place. And I don't know about you but I have cried over spilled {breast} milk.

- The weight of the pump makes hands free pumping impossible. To me, the real value of a double electric pump is the ability to pump hands-free while doing something else (eating lunch, working at my computer) and that is not possible with this one since you need to hold the horns while pumping or perch yourself at exactly the right position (chair and table at exact right height) to have the horns sit in the little feet while you pump and then not move an inch. Again, who wants to do nothing while pumping. Also, the fact that you need to hold the horns while pumping makes it impossible to do breast compressions while pumping unless you are only pumping one side at a time. And I had to do breast compressions.

- There are a lot of small pieces that have to be put together. This is often the case, but with most pumps they stay together once you put them together. With this one, the valve keeps falling out unless you have the whole contraption put together. For me, that meant the valve hit the floor 4 times in the process of putting the pump together. Not ideal if you are trying to keep things sterile.


I do not recommend this pump. Although the price is right (especially for me since I was given it), I think that moms that are only pumping occaisionally would be better off with a quality manual pump. Moms that are working and pumping should get a quality double electric pump that can be used for hands-free pumping.

What else I recommend?
Trying to go through your insurance company to get a quality pump. Because this one is not it.

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