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Five Reasons I Love Breastfeeding

I was always going to breastfeed. I never needed the midwife’s hard sell or the lists or reasons why Breast is Best. For me, I was just going to do it! Now I’ve been breastfeeding for almost 8 years constant. And I have my own reasons why it is so special: 1. The Closeness to Baby Breastfeeding is a very intimate act. After a baby is thrust into this world it is beautiful for mummy and baby to have that closeness, a gentler way to start life. After nine months in the womb the baby is suddenly separate from you, but when he feeds you are one again. Personally I find bottle feeding lacks that closeness, it feels distant. 2. Antibodies! I find it amazing that my antibodies are passed on to my babies, so they receive protection from the viruses I’ve already fought- that’s really cool! Not only that those annoying little eye infection newborns are prone to can be zapped by a well aimed squirt (although aiming a breast milk squirt is a bit hit or miss, and provides great entertainment to older siblings). 3. Convenience Yes, bottle feeders may smugly look on when you have a squawking infant in the post natal ward, but you have food on the go! It makes life a lot less stressful not having to be back in time for that next bottle, or having that flexibility when out and about. 4. Night Feeding I can think of nothing worse than faffing about with bottles in the wee small hours. Sticking a breast in baby’s mouth and everyone getting back to sleep with minimal disruption- much more like it! 5. Immediate Comfort Breastfeeding provides instant comfort. At a mother’s breast is the safest place in the world for a baby. This emotional nourishment is never mentioned in the literature, but for me is the most beautiful part of breastfeeding. Share this:PrintFacebookTwitterEmailLike this:Like...

The Super Dooper Super Food: Breast Milk!

I am a HUGE breast-feeding fan. I have spent the last, nearly, 8 years breastfeeding. In fact, it is fair to say my breasts have acquired their own persona, they are like another member of the family. Little breastfeeding toddlers talk about them as if they are separate to me. They are known as Sookies or Juicies. They have been known to talk (apparently), they are the safest place in the world! As far as I’m concerned, breast milk is the most super of all the super foods! I amazes me that a woman’s body has the ability to produce this continuous supply of milk. Milk that is nutritional perfect for her baby, protects her own body, as well as protecting the baby against infection. We all know the amazing things breast milk can do, we all have the booklets and the pep-talk from our midwives, but here are some cool facts about breast milk, you may not know: 1. Scientists are unable to isolate all the fab things that make up breast milk, so no matter how hard they try formula companies cannot recreate mummy’s own milk. 2. Breast milk changes throughout the day. In the morning milk is more watery, in the evening and night it is thinker, creamier, and more satisfying, so the baby will (should!) feel more full and sleep better. 3. Breast-feeding releases hormones to the mother which help sleep. So although you are wakened in the night you should be able to fall back to sleep more readily. 4. The flavour of breast milk is laced by the food you eat. So even young infants are having their taste buds prepared for weaning. 5. Newborn infants can detect the smell of their mothers milk. A study showed newborns placed between two shirts, one with their mothers milk on it the other with a strangers, tended to turn towards the smell of their mothers milk. 6. You can make ice-cream with breast milk (never tried it by the way!) 7. It boosts IQ! 8. The nipple has 15-20 little holes in it. 9. You can breast feed baby as long as you like and feel comfortable. The World Health Organisation recommends breast feeding continues until baby is two and a half, at least. so nothing weird about feeding a toddler! 10. Breast feeding is a great source of comedy moments formula feeding can never manage- Caitlan Moran’s hilarious article entitled “Breast is Best” will convince you of this! I could not breath, I laughed so much. Share this:PrintFacebookTwitterEmailLike this:Like...

Tiger vs Natural Parenting Styles

As far as parenting styles go I mix two very different parenting ideologies. I take some of the characteristics of a Tiger Mother (although I’m sure true Tiger mothers would think I’m more Tigger than Tiger); and I incorporate elements of a Natural Mama. Natural mothering employs a gentler style of parenting. Natural mothers believe in breastfeeding, co-sleeping, baby wearing, gentle disciple etc. I never made a conscience choice to be a natural mama, but I have found myself gravitating towards many of the ideologies associated with it. I am a complete extreme breastfeeder, I love breastfeeding, and the thought of doing anything different with my children is utterly alien. We have stumbled into co-sleeping, and I am utterly converted. My babies sleep better through the night, I am less tired… it just makes sense! The baby wearing bit I have tried, but I find it awkward, especially with toddlers, although I can see the appeal, and know people it works for. And then we come to “gentle disciple”, I probably fall down here- this is where the Tiger comes out. I am a firm believer that Western culture is doing a lot of damage to our children by failing to equip them for the real world (this is one of the reasons we home educate). The reality is our children will have to live and work in this global village, where they will not be merely competing for a job with the boy down the road, but they will be in direct competition with the boy in China, who has been drilled from a tender age to be the best. However, Chinese young people do tend to have poor mental health, as they are placed under immense pressure to achieve. But we in the West must be able to find a balance. Where we stop celebrating mediocrity and selling our children short. After reading “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother” I decided to push the children a little more academically. The Girl had her maths doubled, she has risen to the occasion. I also doubled the amount of violin she was to practise every day, again she rose to the challenge and is progressing nicely. The Jedi Boy, is slightly different. But I moved him forward quicker also, and he too met and exceeded my expectations. I want my children to have a wonderful childhood, but they also have to be equipped to survive in the world. They need to be able to work hard, to push themselves, to be uncomplaining when things are tough. The world they...
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