My Medela. My Go To.

Late night post, because really… When the kids are asleep that’s when it’s free range (not to mention quiet time) to get things done.

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The word busy is pretty much synonymous with mamas. Who doesn’t hit the ground running every morning; juggle multiple tasks through the day, all while taking care of your babe, your family, work and yourself on top. One thing that I have had by my side since baby #1 was my Medela’s Freestyle Double Electric Breast Pump. How can a breast pump alleviate the busy-ness from day to day, well let me tell you.

  • Built In Battery Means You Can Take it on the Go: The battery is built-in and rechargeable so you can literally use it anywhere, trust me, I’ve not only used it at home while curling my hair, or doing the dishes, but have pumped in the car while driving to a meeting (crazy, but it works).
  • 2-Phase Expression Technology: Have you ever noticed that your babe suckles for the first minute or two after latching on, then after they suckle your milk lets down and your babe is guzzling away. Well the Medela Freestyle mimics just that. Even after I’ve fed my babe, I use my Freestyle to bag and freeze more milk. (Not to mention it helps maintain + grow milk supply, my freezer is packed with bags of frozen milk).
  • Double Pumping: I originally started with Medela’s Swing Single Pump, which worked amazingly, but as I was sitting there for 20 – 30 minutes at a time I thought to myself, there must be a quicker way to do this. That’s when I discovered the game changer, the Medela Freestyle Double Electric Pump (insert smiley face emoji). I wear a hands-free bandeau meant to hold the pumps, and I was off to the races.

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Now onto baby #3, and Medela is still my go to. Life definitely has gotten busier having more kids, but I still get to enjoy some me time (and even sleep) thanks to my awesome hubby, family and Medela’s Calma Bottle. I honestly was a little hesitant at first, I’ve always heard about babies who are too young having a bottle too early and then suffering from “nipple confusion”, but that wasn’t the case at all with the Calma bottle. All 3 babes were able to easily transition back and forth from mama to bottle, all filled with the stored frozen breast milk.

But in all seriousness, breastfeeding baby, especially the first time around was intense. I didn’t realize how often it happened, how uncomfortable (errrr, painful it was) for the first couple of weeks, breastpads, nursing bras, and more… but thank goodness for my mama friends who had kids before me. Who would answer my middle of the night calls (and cries) and tell me that it was all normal; to cold compress the “engorge-ness”, or to pump, pump, pump and freeze for later. And now my middle of the night “calls” go to MyMedela App… thank goodness for this app, because I was starting to feel bad for waking up my friends in the middle of the night.

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Want a chance to win your very own Medela to try out for yourself. Then please check out this link.

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#MyMedela #MedelaCanada #Freestyle

3 Babes Later & Medela is Still My Go To

Medela Breast Pump was a game changer for me since I had baby #1 in 2012. Bringing home baby was a blurry whirlwind as I was adjusting to life as a new mom. A friend recommended pumping and freezing so that my husband could help feed the baby and then I could get a little rest, while also helping keep a healthy milk flow.

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Medela Microfiber Shoulder Carry Bag

Breastfeeding was a challenge to say the least. Maybe because I had a romanticized vision of what that was supposed to look like, but let me tell you, the first few weeks definitely took a lot of patience, persistence, nipple cream and ice packs. At one point I thought it was a good idea to completely stop feeding out of my left breast because it hurt too much, only to find that the pain intensified because my ducts got clogged. I was uncomfortable, tired, confused and sleep deprived, so again I asked my trusty mama friends what was I doing wrong, to which it was a unanimous, “don’t stop feeding, and if it hurts too much take a break feeding on that breast but pump, pump, pump”.

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Medela Pump + Save Breast Milk Bags

Weeks went by and I was slowly getting in to the groove of things. Baby was settling in to a consistent daily schedule, and I dared to finally venture out of the house alone. Slowly but surely life was returning back to a new normal and I was able to start working… and working-out again. Honestly, I wouldn’t have been able to enjoy some ‘me time’ if I wasn’t using my Medela Freestyle double electric breast pump. I actually started out with the Swing Single Pump but then thought, I could cut down my pumping time in half if I used the Freestyle Double Pump, and from that moment on I was determined to see how time efficient I could make everything while multitasking, lol.

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Medela Freestyle Double Electric Breast Pump

I was pumping at least six times a day every day, freezing it and was now even able to multitask while pumping. I opted to use a hands-free bandeau, so that I could do emails while pumping… Eventually mastering pumping while doing dishes, preparing food, curling my hair and more. It became a fun game of what can I do now that I’m hands free.

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            Medela Freestyle has been my go to for all of my babes. Just recently having baby #3 this passed summer was no exception to that. I’ve been able to pump and freeze allowing for my husband to enjoy his bonding time with the babes for the late night dream feed, letting me relax and have date nights while my mom babysits, and getting an early morning sweat-in at the gym. Not to mention if I’m out for a meeting during a scheduled feed time, I can easily pump on the go (yes, you can find me pumping in my car, or even in an empty office) store the milk and freeze it for later. Having a baby is definitely a life changing experience, but Medela has been a part of bringing life back to as normal as possible (as well as frozen bags of milk in the freezer).

You can check out my fun daily Medela use via SnapChat: LittleDreamBird, or Instagram Stories: LittleDreamBird

See you there!
Xx

Disclosure: I am part of the PTPA Brand Ambassador Program with Medela Canada and I received Compensation as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.

 

 

 

Mama Needs a Closet Edit

The baby is here, my body has changed, and my closet needs some serious help. Who do I turn to? None other than Stylist/Brand Consultant + all around awesome person Elim Chu.

Before baby #3 had arrived I looked in my overly full closet and realized I really don’t use at least half of the stuff in there. But how do I pick + choose, where do the items that don’t make the cut go, and how do I keep a clean style during pre + post pregnancy. Shirts are small, dresses are too short, this skirt may work post pregnancy but definitely won’t work right now?

So why Elim? Can’t I figure it out on my own. Well a LOT of my clothes were just kept for the sake of the memory of it, not so much the use of it. Really, when am I going to wearing a neon pink velour Juicy track suit again (lol).

Elim meets with you, gets a feel for your style (or the style you want to develop) and then goes over your closet piece by piece to make decisions on what you want to keep, toss or think about. She’s a style guru, and comes in with an unbiased eye. Clothes are just clothes, but how you feel in it is what transcends.

After having a baby (or just anytime really), it’s just great to feel your best again.
xox

I Am Baby’s Walking Milk Dispenser – Now how do I enjoy a couple hours out.

Breastfeeding should be an Olympic sport, especially during the first few months with a newborn. A girlfriend of mine recently asked me why babies cry? And I said, at the beginning, for the most part, it’s usually because they’re either hungry or tired. My babe is almost always hungry, and I proceeded to tell her I pretty much breastfeed baby about every 3 hours, 24/7, for the first 3 months… on top of pumping, in order to freeze milk for those special times I get to venture out without baby.

Well tonight is one of those special occasions, kind of a mini adventure. A mama-girlfriend and myself are heading out for our first Dine En Blanc experience. Sure you pay for tickets, bring your own table, chairs, decor, place settings, food, and don’t know the secret location till an hour prior to, but I guess that’s all part of the excitement. An adult rave, if you will. Lol!

I will be venturing away from baby for a good handful of hours, but my milk will still be producing as if I were breastfeeding baby. So how do I enjoy an (early) evening out, with my trusty travel double-pump, and bags upon bags of frozen breast-milk in the freezer so that baby can still enjoy her warm meals at home.

Don’t be fooled by that Mansur Gavriel bucket bag, it’s not all glitz and glamour inside. I’ll be able to squeeze my wallet, phone, and hopefully a Kylie matte lip kit, so that I can leave lots of extra space for my double pump + bottles. Tonight we’re supposed to wear all white, travel to an outdoor location  which I have no idea what the amenities are, all while I make time to pump at least a couple times through the evening (and with an all white macaron tower in tow, to use as our edible table centrepiece). All well worth it to enjoy a couple hours of an adventure with an awesome friend. I hope to be home in time for the dream feed.

Watch tonight’s adventures over at SnapChat: @littledreambird
xox

 

Mother Juggler

One thing I can guarantee after your baby has arrived is… Change. Your body changes. Schedules change. Priorities change. The amount of sleep you get definitely changes, lol. And more.

After all of that (and then some) I always knew for myself, a priority was to have a sense of self. Call me selfish, but I wanted to make sure I was still enjoying date nights with my husband, quality time with friends, outings with the girls, me time at the gym, or a little spoiling at the spa, on top of all that quality time with my little loves.

Balance looks different for everybody, priorities are different for everybody, so you have to make sure you do what works for you. People ask me how do I have time to do this or that, and my answer is a quote I saw on a Pinterest board (Pinterest, oh how I love you so). “Be a duck swimming in water – Calm + cool above water, but paddling like hell underneath”, and that’s pretty much me in a nutshell.

On a final note… Funny little things (or annoying little things) I do to keep myself organized (or so I think):

  • Lists: Who doesn’t love good old fashion to-do-lists. Depending on the priority I still do hand written sticky notes, lists in my phone’s notepad, or lists in my online calendar that ping at me when something is due.
  • Leave Things Out: Just how people used to tie a string around their finger as a reminder that they have to do something (do you remember that, or am I dating myself), I like to leave things out or out of place so that I know I have to do something with it. IE: Leaving out empty garbage bags, to remind myself that I have to replace the ones in the kids’ rooms, or leaving empty Medela bottles on the kitchen island to remind myself to pump. Sounds silly I know, but it works.
  • Do It Now: I like to “do things now” (of course my husband hates that). But I figure, there’s a good chance I’m going to forget what I need to do in the next 5 – 10 minutes due to the kids are calling, somebody’s diaper needs to get changed, or I’m receiving a text. So the best way to nip that in the bud, simple… do it now.

And that’s all folks!
xo

A Whole Lotta Things Happen To The Body After Baby

And these are my favourites to help combat, battle or ease all the bodily transitions that happen. You know… Because having a baby isn’t a challenge enough😛

Nipples: I guesstimate the transition from non-breastfeeding to breastfeeding nipples is about 3 weeks. Perhaps it happens quicker for some, or slower for others, but that’s the average for myself. Some may even be so lucky to not get this “breastfeeding nipple transition” pain, but I’m not one of them. So one of my new faves to use is Honest’s Organic Nipple Balm It gets slathered on after every feed + features only high quality, organic certified ingredients safe for ingestion. Yaaaas!

Eczema: I get Eczema on my fingers, I also now wash my hands about a million times a day amid cleaning, handling the baby + kids and everything in between. Luckily I found Satya Organic Skin Care. No added fragrance, USDA certified organic, and locally made here in Vancouver, BC, plus it works… it really works.

Keeping Calm: I’m a big fan of calming scents, and my 2 faves are Woodlot’s Refreshing Mist (the kids love it too, and ask me to spritz them daily), and Woodlot’s candle collab with Tight Club (one of my favourite gyms to get my sweat on at). I swear it really brings the calm into a crazy day. Anything for a moment of solitude.

Ooh Baby: And of course, this sweet little newborn babe is transitioning into the world from the womb, so sometimes they have things going on as well. My first little one had cradle cap, my second had yeast build ups in their rollie-pollies, and now the third has pealing skin. My faves for them, that are either all natural or organic and have worked for all three are Dimpleskin’s Bum Bum Balm + Sweet Cheeks, and Bebe de Luxe’s soothing Coconut & Oat Milk Bath in a glass jar. Their newborn + gentle skin just eats this up!

Laundry: Now let’s not forget the loads + loads of never-ending laundry. Before kids I never really thought about what I washed clothes with, it was pretty much whatever was on sale or smelled really good. Then I became aware… much more aware of what goes into these cleaning products. I started using Ecos Laundry Soap, and just recently discovered a local shop called The Soap Dispensary. All natural or environmentally friendly, and it works, it really works. I like things clean so I was happily surprised to discover that you can use options that are good for you, and that also really work and get clothes clean. Because it’s never fun walking around with spit up stains + smells :P  Happy dance!

Saran Wrap, and Nipple Balm and Ice Packs… Oh My!

I’m a sucker for a good flat lay, but recently having babe #3 I realized there are definitely some essentials that I use on the daily that don’t make it into any photos.

And I don’t know about you, but the transition into breastfeeding is an uphill battle. The first couple of weeks are a pain (to say the least), so I always keep these essentials close by. Saran wrap squares, organic Honest nipple balm, Medela dual pump, organic nursing bandeau, breast pads, Numpfer multi-use bibs and ice packs. The un-glamorous stuff that doesn’t make the photos, but are definitely necessities.

Now, what do I use these for + how do I use them…

  • Saran Wrap Squares + Nipple Balm + Breast Pad: May sound crazy, but totally works for me. I pre-cut 3″ x 3″ squares, put the nipple balm on after every feed (which happen A LOT the first few weeks), then cover it with the squares. Keeps everything moisturized and there is no harsh rubbing against a dry breast pad or nursing bra. And then when your milk has fully come in (usually around the 3rd – 5th day) you may start leaking a little (or a lot, like myself) so then I like to top it with a breast pad.
  • Breast Pump + Nursing Bandeau: I’m a fan of pumping + freezing, on top of breastfeeding. And since pumping takes up a little bit of time, and I like to multi-task as much as possible, I wear a bandeau so that I can do emails while pumping. 2 hands free = a world of possibilities, lol!
  • Numpfer Bibs + Ice Packs: And of course the wonderful world of being engorged. Everybody has a different experience with breastfeeding, and milk coming in, etc, for me… I get super, SUPER, engorged when the milk finally makes its appearance. To combat the overnight swelling + uncomfortableness, I take hot showers and use Numpfer’s bibs to help massage + express milk out to get things flowing, followed by a little ice time. Ahhhhhh…

And like I mentioned the first couple of weeks are painful. Like, toe cringing, eye closing, teeth gritting painful. I like to call it the body’s “adjustment time” into breastfeeding. But if you keep at it, like they say, it gets better (it really does) – Enjoyable even.

3rd Time’s a Charm [But not really]

Being in the thick of having our 3rd baby, I’ve already received comments like “you’re a pro”, “this ain’t your first rodeo”, or “you’ve got this”… While it’s true that I know a thing or two about a thing or it, I’m no pro by any means. Labour is always intense, meeting babe for the first time is always exciting, but it’s the first few days (let alone weeks or months) that are in all honesty… crappy.

The first time around the new babe hit our house like a hurricane. Nights rolled into days and rolled into nights again, sleep was abysmal to say the least, and the endless crying (maybe more-so from myself than the babe) were depressing. Those days are long gone though, well with babe #1 at least. And here we are again at square one with babe #3. But this time I’m armed with the knowledge that “this too shall pass”. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, sleep will come, showers will come, and everything will be rainbows & sunshine again.

Till then cheers to all the new babies + new mamas everywhere. (Seriously, you deserve a drink😉 lol)

34 Weeks Pregnant + Keeping Busy

Since this is my 3rd pregnancy (and actually my 1st one not having gestational diabetes, yay) it’s been my goal since the beginning to keep as active as possible (just like with the other pregnancies). But this time I think I may have said “yes” to pretty much everything thrown my way… Which actually was a good thing. I find the busier I am, the more efficient I become with my time. Non?

At 34 weeks pregnant I was part of a volunteer team who planned, fundraised, and rode (yes, rode a stationary bike at 34 weeks, totally not as bad as one would think) in “Ride Vs One” In short, Ride Cycle Club lead a 1 hour spin class, at the Vancouver Art Gallery (it’s never been done here before), each bike’s goal was to raise $2000, in order to raise money for Imagine 1 Day to build a school in Ethiopia.

The planning started in October 2015, with a small team of 6 volunteers, and meetings were strategically held after 7PM (after the kids were in bed to not miss any awake time with them😉 The event happened on June 26, 2016 + it was AWESOME! What a little hard work + dedication take you, not to mention a go-getting team, is amazing.

Hospital Bags: To Pack or Not To Pack, That is the Question

As the saying goes, third time’s a charm. And with that, I am slowly getting ready (and packed) for our trip to the hospital for baby #3. My thoughts on the needed + necessary of the “hospital bag”…

I’m all for being super prepared, and so for our first trip to the hospital I actually packed + brought a full sized travel suitcase to keep my mind at ease with all the things I thought were necessities. Let me tell you, that suitcase took up a good quarter of our teeny tiny hospital room, and we ended up rolling it in and out for most of the time (a not fun thing to do after delivering a baby), as we had lots of visitors coming through. Lesson learned, less is more. What did I even put in that suitcase you ask, I think an over-abundance of clothes, magazines to read (yes, I really thought things could possibly be calm enough to read, hah), blankets for the baby, etc. Basically a mini version of my house, lol.

With the 2nd I was able to pack a medium sized lululemon gym bag, and now with the 3rd my goal is to get everything into an easy sized backpack. With all that being said, you just have to pack for whatever you need or whatever makes you feel at ease, maybe less maybe more… Just keep in mind you’ll be lugging around whatever you bring, plus a newborn in a carseat after all is said and done😉

My favourites to pack:

  • Boy shorts underwear (you’ll definitely need this, or bigger, for apres-bebe)
  • Overnight super-soak pads (or a friend even used depends) yes, totally needed
  • Sports drink (yes, you may be there for a while so electrolytes are your friend)
  • Pajamas/sweatsuit
  • Nursing bra + nursing tank
  • iPod/iPhone + chargers
  • Camera + charger
  • Slippers with grip/flip flops
  • Toiletries (lip balm is my go to, and I always opt to shower at home after)
  • Outfit/onsie + receiving blankets for baby
  • Oh, and nipple cream (seriously my best friend for the 1st few weeks)

Simple as that🙂

Happy + healthy baby vibes.
xox