Breastfeeding 101: Nursing in Public

by Lauren on December 18, 2014

Feeding a baby seems so simple right?  Babies eat at the same time every day, eat enough to be full, and know exactly what they are doing.  HA, wrong, very very wrong!

When Grayson was born, I didn’t really know what to expect when it came to nursing.  All I knew is that I wanted to do it and I’m sure we’d figure out the rest.  Well, we eventually figured it out after a rough few months and I’d say it took a solid 6 weeks for us both to fully get the hang of it.  (You can see more on my tips on how I increased my supply in the first few weeks here)  But even though we are both more comfortable and better at it these days, there are still times when things get difficult.  Example: When G goes through a growth spurt and wants to eat every hour ALL day or when we are out somewhere and he demands to be fed at the most inopportune times.  It happens and you can’t really prepare for those days.

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I recently had a reader ask me what I do when I’m out and about with a baby when it came to feeding.  After all, G and I do go out just about every day so I had to figure this out fairly quickly.  In the beginning, I was a nervous wreck!  I tried to pump a bottle every single time we were about the leave the house to have something on hand in case he needed to eat, but then I realized how completely cumbersome that was on my life, usually making us late to just about everything.  Leaving the house was too much of a production and I knew I just had to get over my fear of nursing in public eventually if I ever wanted to get a few hours each day of my life back.

Now, we just go, and I can’t tell you how much easier it makes things.  After all, I always have my boobs on hand and they will always give my baby what he needs.  I found it’s a million times easier to just whip out a boob than to mess with bottles in public and as long as you are comfortable, most people don’t even notice or care.

Here are some of my tips for how we learned to breastfeed in public:

1.  Bring a cover

I’m not the biggest fan on nursing covers because I think they are more of a hassle than help, but I will bring something to cover up when I nurse him in public.  I love the Aden and Anais blankets for nursing.  They are lightweight, easy to transport, and you can use them as a burp cloth or to clean up messes.  They cover me and Grayson nicely and he is not bothered by a bulky blanket while he eats.

2.  Wear conducive clothing

When you nurse your baby 8+ times a day, you fully appreciate clothes that work with you and not against you in this task.  Before I leave the house, I am always making sure my top can easily be pulled down.  I do own a few nursing camis, which are fabulous, but they can be hard to find and somewhat expensive.  Usually, I’ll just wear a loose cami underneath a sweater or button up shirt, that way I can lift one shirt up and pull the other down to ensure that my midsection is covered.  I also wear a nursing bra or a bra that hooks in the front (LOVE these!).  Like I said, you can find some great nursing clothes online, but they aren’t cheap and in my case, I’ll only get about a year of use out of them.

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3. Know the places that are nursing friendly

Guys, there are a lot of public places that make it easier on nursing moms.  I guess I never really noticed it before because I never had to, but I’ve found that many public restrooms have a seating area perfect for nursing.  So now the whole couch thing in the women’s bathroom makes sense! Nordstrom is my absolute favorite!  I seriously want to hug the person that designed their bathroom. The store in our mall has 2 full nursing rooms equipped with comfy chairs, changing tables, and soft music playing.  It’s like a little nursing vacation. Babies R Us also has a great Mother’s Lounge as well as Macy’s and even IKEA.  Here is a good list of the best public nursing places.  They even make an app that allows you to check in when you find a good nursing room at a store to help inform other moms.

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4. When all else fails, nurse in your (parked) car

Yep, it will probably happen.  In fact, this just happened to me the other day. You’ll be in a small shop with absolutely no where to go and have no choice but to resort to car nursing.  I try and park in a spot that is not busy or surrounded by other cars and get comfy in the back seat with my little one.  If it’s cold outside, I will turn the car on and crank the heat.  Your car is your own little home away from home when you’re out so don’t be afraid to use it!

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5.  Try and plan your baby’s feedings around your schedule

I say try because we all know that’s never really entirely possible.  I always make sure I nurse G right before we leave the house.  Even if he’s not wanting to nurse, I at least offer and try to get him to eat a little something to fill his stomach.  We usually don’t plan to be out for more than 2-3 hours at a time or try not to go very far from home.  For the longer trips away, I’m a little more prepared, but for the everyday errands, we just pick up and go.  If there is a day where I know I have a lot to do and places to be, I will try and plan a pit stop back home to feed, change him and just regroup.  Grayson does really well when we are out (most of the time) but he still needs a little break now and then.

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If you are a nursing mom or are planning on nursing your little one, I hope these few words of advice help you.  Honestly, the most often you do it, the easier it becomes.  I know there is some controversy over nursing in public, but let’s get real, I’m not flaunting my lady parts all over creation like some young girls are these days.  In my opinion, if Kim K can expose her entire nude backside in a media stunt coined as “art”, then please don’t ever tell me that using my breasts in the most non-eroctic way to feed my hungry baby is offensive.  We live in a society where nudity is becoming the norm, so let’s start to channel that way of life into something healthy and positive.

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Twas the Week Before Christmas

by Lauren on December 15, 2014

Wow, talk about a holiday craze out there!  I always seem to forget how the week before Christmas is such a crazy one out in public.  The roads are a mess, the stores are crowded and finding a parking spot just about anywhere is a luck of the drawl.  We went out twice today and each time was a huge ordeal.  I’m thinking I’d better lay low for the next few days but thankfully, there is a Target in walking distance for my last minute things.

So I was trying to come up with a thought provoking post for today but my head is not coming up with anything.  We had some news delivered to us today (good news) but now my mind is going a mile a minute.  I’ll share more details about it all a little later.

Anyways, so that just leaves me with a few pictures and a short recap of our Monday.  I hope you don’t mind.

Grayson was back at his normal early wake-up call this morning and to be honest, I didn’t mind it all that much.  I love having extra time in the mornings and he is always in the best mood during this time.  I love to play with him and get a few big smiles. It really does make my entire day.

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I ate breakfast, which was the exact same thing I had the day before, oatmeal.  We then got ready for class and headed out the door.

Class was a blast today!  Our instructor challenged us at the end with a little wall sit contest.  The winner would receive a Starbucks gift card so I was all over that wall.

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I lasted 15 minutes!  I really had no idea how or where that came from but I can tell you my legs are definitely feeling it now.  I swear, someone tempts me with Starbucks and I’ll fight for my life.

We got back from class and I fed G, showered and then devoured lunch.

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An egg sandwich with spinach and a green juice from Wegmans.  I could eat this lunch every single day!

After lunch, G and I headed to Starbucks to use my gift card and so that I could get some work done.  We did a quick stop at Babies R Us and came home to hang out for the rest of the night.

I did put together a very quick and easy dinner of a baked sweet potato with coconut oil and a ton of broccoli with a little butter and parmesan cheese.

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Now the babe is down and sleeping peacefully and I’m about to embark on a bit more work before I pass out for the day.

Not the most exciting Monday, but not a bad way to start the week.

 

Question: Are you a last minute Christmas shopper or on top of your shopping?

 

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