Category Archives: Mom

Making Your Back-to-Work Plan, The Pumping Edition

We recently teamed up with Jennifer Mayer, founder of Baby Caravan, and Birth Doula for over 12 years, to get her advice about mothers who are going back to work and are committed to breastfeeding and maintaining their pumping schedule. Read below for her thoughts and suggestions, and to start your back-to-work plan.

For many mothers, the return to work is filled with lots of stress, concern and worry. Leaving your new baby in the arms of an entrusted caregiver and returning to work is never easy. For moms who are committed to breastfeeding, creating a good pumping
plan is a huge asset.

Breastfeeding is all about supply and demand. In order to produce enough milk for your child’s feedings, it’s essential that you pump on a regular and consistent basis. Many moms are concerned about their supply when they return to work, since they will be away from their baby. It’s true that the pump is not quite as efficient to remove milk as compared to your baby, and your supply may decrease. However, there are a few things you can do to keep your supply up while pumping at work.

1) Make A Schedule: The most important thing when pumping at work, is making sure you pump on a consistent basis. Usually pumping at least twice while you’re away (every 4 hours), and ideally three times while you’re away (every 3 hours) will be often enough. To ensure your pump sessions occur, schedule them into your daily schedule if possible.

2) Have a Dedicated Pump Spot: Some offices have lactation rooms already available, and other places of employment do not. If possible, speak with HR prior to returning to work to sort out where you can pump when you return to work. Make sure it’s not a bathroom!

3) Grab Your Gear: You’ll likely want to have one pump at the office, and another at home. Prepare for your first day by bringing an extra set up pump parts as back-up, and extra shirt (just in case!) and extra storage bottles. You’ll also want to bring a cooler bag to transport your milk home in. We love the Pack-It coolers.

4) Breastfeed When You’re Home: One way moms ensure to keep up their supply is to nurse often when they are home with their baby. Depending on how well your little one is sleeping at night, you may want to feed more often in the evening and in the morning hours. On the weekends you can spend time nursing to boost
your supply and have lots of bonding time with your baby.

Some workplaces are more supportive than others when it comes to pumping at work. Hopefully your employer respects how important and beneficial breastfeeding is.

However if you’re the first employee to pump at work, or your employer isn’t very supportive, here are some ways to create a pump friendly environment.

1) The Law is Your Friend: At the federal level, mothers are also protected but for just one year: “Section 7 of the FLSA requires employers to provide reasonable break time for an employee to express breast milk for her nursing child for one year after the child’s birth each time such employee has need to express the milk.”

2) Design a Lactation Room: If you’re able to, design a lactation room for your company. You’ll want to include essentials like access to a sink, fridge for storage, cubbies to hold gear, a desk or table to hold laptops and pumps, comfortable chairs, wipes, and a community board. If you need a temporary space check out companies like Melk and Mamava.

3) Educate: If you’re one of the first moms who’s pumping, your boss and colleagues might just be unaware of all the benefits. Gently educating them on the health benefits of breastfeeding for babies and moms could go a long way toward acceptance.

I hope these tips help you as your prepare for your transition back to work. Pumping is certainly a commitment that takes time and dedication. Yet for many moms the satisfaction of providing breast milk for their babies while they are away at work is worth all the effort.

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For more information about Jennifer and Baby Caravan, click here.

The Best of NYC Mom Groups

Are you new to the city, raising children on or near the Upper East Side? Do you need a new mom network, or some fun and easy suggestions for activities with the kids?

We gathered a great list of  NYC mom groups to help meet local moms and make playdates with children the same age as your own.

Our top three UES centric things to do with kids:

1. The Craft Studio
2. My Gym: Lincoln Center
3. The MET

Need more? Kidz Central Station is a great spot to search for classes all over Manhattan and Brooklyn for ages infant and up, and Mommy Poppins, “Top 50 Things to Do for NYC Families” has great suggestions, too!

Happy Mom-Grouping!

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Consultant, Taylor Bell

Positive Affirmations to Inspire Mom

If your calendar alert didn’t go off reminding you that Mother’s Day is this Sunday, then consider this your official reminder.

Mother’s Day is a great time to remind moms everywhere how much they are valued, loved, and appreciated for all of the things they do. It’s important for moms to relax and reflect on all the joys motherhood brings, and appreciate the hard work they achieve each and every day.

With special thanks to Personal Creations, they provided a list of 52 Positive Affirmations to Inspire Mom, in a recent post on their website. This is a great read for moms, not only on Mother’s Day, but all days of the year! Personal Creations also provides some great printable pages to go along with the read.

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the moms out there!

“There’s no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one.” Jill Churchill

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Consultant, Taylor Bell

Have a Birthing Experience Like an A-Lister

Giving birth to your newborn child is one of life’s most precious things to experience (or so I’ve heard). That doesn’t go without saying that there are some not so precious things that occur during labor. To spare everyone of all the glorious details, let’s instead talk about how giving birth can be one of the most luxurious experiences of your life!

You’ve heard it here first; labor can be an experience where you feel like a queen, and it may leave you never wanting to leave that hospital room again.

In an article published by parents.com, they introduce some of the most luxurious birthing suites in the US. That’s right ladies, think spa treatments, 24-hour concierge service, and a private chef! It’s time to leave the roommate life behind, and experience a birthing experience as Amal Clooney would.

  1. Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center
    Birthing suites are designed to look like the outdoors! Oh yeah, your food is delivered by a tuxedo-wearing “food ambassador.”
  2. Rose Medical Center in Denver
    Birthing rooms have private bathrooms with Jacuzzi bathtubs, rocking chairs, and flat-screen TVs. To be totally low key, VIPs can enter one of the luxury suites, and be offered the services of a private chef.
  3. Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles
    If a three-room suite isn’t enough, mom can treat herself to an in-suite manicure, pedicure, or haircut. Celebs like Kourtney Kardashian, Rachel Zoe, and Victoria Beckham have given birth here, so start planning your totally casual celeb run-in now.
  4. The Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City
    Enjoy your luxury suite overlooking Central Park and have your newborn wrapped in muslin cotton swaddling blankets. And no mom leaves without a postpartum massage!
  5. The Women’s & Children’s Hospital at Centennial in Nashville
    How about a 24/7 concierge service to handle your requests? From making sure your car gets an oil change to delivering food from Nashville-area restaurants – can we say VIP?

 

We provided the top five luxurious birthing suites. For the remaining five you can read the full article, here.

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell

Lessons Mothers Should Teach Their Daugthers

Think about some of the lessons your mother taught you while you were growing up. Do you teach those same lessons to your daughter?

It’s something that is very interesting to think about. I look back at my upbringing and the lessons my mother has taught me, and I wonder if these same lessons were taught to her by her mother, and her mother before that. Just when, and how long has this lesson been apart of the family?

I recently read a post through Big City Moms that touches on this subject. They present 31 lessons that all mothers should teach their daughters, and it makes for a great read!

Below are some of the important lessons moms hope to impart on their daughters:

  1. “That she is beloved and precious…worthy of respect and love.” — Kristel Acevedo 
  2. “That in life you will have smiles, tears, good and bad days, so always have a plan to go to, but to laugh more and don’t sweat the small stuff. Be proud of who you are.” — Sheila Bohnett
  3. “To be content, secure, and kind.” — Meg H.R.
  4. “Always know your worth.” — Amy Fraser Tackabury
  5. “The same message my parents instilled in me: to have the confidence to pursue your dreams and work hard, and your parents will always be there to support you, no matter what.” — Joy Symonds
  6. “It is not your job to make people happy. You can do nothing about how other people feel, only your response is up to you.” — Jessica Lemmons
  7. “To know that if Jesus walked this earth (as GOD) and couldn’t keep everyone happy, there is no way we as mere humans could. And it isn’t our job. Find what it is that you were made for and go for it!!! And to not take frustrations and stress out on your body but to love your body. You only get one!” — Bonnie Byrd
  8. “The friends you choose will play a big part in who you become so surround yourself with people you admire. And love yourself, imperfections and all.” — Tasha Newcomb
  9. “The “handyman” skills my mom learned from her mom and in turn taught me. I love being able to fix, build, and install things myself! Dated a bit, but my grandma told my mom “when it breaks, your husband will probably be at work, and when he gets home, he’ll be too tired. So your best bet is fixing it yourself.” — Sarah Huston
  10. “That her stubbornness will take her great places in life, if only she uses it the right way.” — Laura Delagarza Gruenwald

 

For the full list, check out the Big City Moms website!

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell

Get to Know Maternity Mentors

Maternity Mentors is a program designed to help parents navigate life’s greatest challenge through tailored sessions, e-communications, and classes to help mentor new parents.

We recently had the opportunity to talk to Millie Gillon, the face and creator behind Maternity Mentors. Read below to learn more about her and the impressive guidance offered by Maternity Mentors.

Q: You mentioned you spent countless hours researching online boards, articles, mom’s groups, medical journals, etc. What resources helped you the most to answer your new mom questions?

A: CDC, American Medical Association, and combining information from countless blogs, boards, and articles around topics ranging from postpartum care, cloth diapers, to first foods, educational development, and beyond. I feel like I earned a PhD. in new parenthood from all of the research I did during late night nursing sessions. 

Q: Why should moms turn to Maternity Mentors as a trusted resource? What sets you apart from an expecting mom’s network?

A: Maternity Mentors is an experienced resource that works 1 on 1 with expectant moms to deliver the best resource for all maternity issues. The mom’s network is composed of mainly mothers’ first hand accounts, whereas Maternity Mentors is a combination of experiential and clinical resources to help.

Q: Why is having a mentor during pregnancy so important? Does Maternity Mentors stay with the mom throughout the entire pregnancy? Can a mom turn to their mentor after the baby is born?

A: Most new parents are focused on the labor and delivery experience, but few focus on the intricacies of parenthood beyond countless ads focused on buying merchandise that they really do not need. A mother about to go into labor is vulnerable from experience. While there are plenty of resources she can turn to (friends, family), none are directly committed to new parents and the baby/babies. The mentorship experience is about focusing on the new parent(s), and baby’s wellbeing. 

Guide to Raising a Happy, Healthy Mom

The Mother’s Matter blog recently posted an article that talks about how to raise a happy, healthy mom. One big influential factor they highlight is sleep (or lack of) amongst moms.

This post offers three tried and tested tips that can help moms and dads catch a few extra zzz’s.

1. Sleep more = Sweat more.

A study published in Annals of Behavioral Medicine, revealed that a home-based, individual aerobic exercise program can reduce fatigue (both physical and mental) in women with postpartum depression. A second study revealed that a group of postnatal women who practiced in-home Pilates, were found to have lower levels of physical and mental fatigue than their non-practicing peers.

2. Wanna sleep? Apply the pressure.

Licensed acupuncturist and owner of Four Flower Wellness in Chicago, Ashley Flores, speaks to the restorative potential of acupressure for new mothers. Instead of using needles, the treatment is administered with the fingers. Flores suggested that applying acupressure to the Pericardium 5, 6, and 7 points (found on the inside of the wrist) can be especially useful before going to sleep.

3. Eat your way to a good sleep.

The foods a new mom opts for can make a difference in helping cope with a chronic case of depleted sleep. Nutritional Consultant, Patricia Daly, BA, DipHE, NT states that one of the best ways to stave off physical and emotional fatigue is to keep blood sugar levels even throughout the day. Complex carbohydrates such as whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta, and brown rice are preferable to their white counterparts.

For the complete article and to see more from Mother’s Matter, click here.

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell