Monthly Archives: February 2008

More Calories for Breastfeeding Mothers?

As a breastfeeding mom of a 7 week old baby, I have been seeking ways to get back to my pre-pregnancy size. While I know exercise is important and has its place, it also makes sense to watch what you are eating.

I have been told with all my children that I should have an extra 500 calories per day in order to give my body enough energy to make breast milk. While I know that is a great thing to hear and very tempting to do no questions asked, it did not make a lot of sense to me.

This is the most sensible answer I have every heard or read on this topic. It makes so much sense it is almost hard to believe. 🙂

Think about it. Adding 500 calories to a diet of a woman who consumes 2000 calories per day (the amount most food package labels assume you will consume) increases the intake by 25%. Adding 500 calories to the diet of a woman who normally consumes 1200 calories per day increases her calorie intake by 41.6%! So tell me. Wouldn’t it make more sense and be more realistic to say that breastfeeding mothers should increase their caloric intake by 25%?

Scary Bathrooms

Did you ever wonder how no-touch technology comes across to two year olds? Think about it. At home, they flush the potty themselves, they at least see the water turned on by an adult, and the hand dryers are something they don’t see at all (especially if mom or dad prefers paper towels over dryers)!

Then they walk into the bathroom at a store and feel like they’re in the twilight zone. The toilet noisily swallows anything that comes near it (or at least attempts to). The sink spits on anything that dares to move in front of it. The hand dryer blows hot air out its snout when someone walks underneath it (two year olds do walk under them, you know). They probably come out of the bathroom expecting the water fountain to stick out its leg to trip them!!

And we wonder why two year olds throw temper tantrums!! 🙂

Respiratory Synctial Virus

Well, it is the time of year for Respiratory Synctial Virus, more commonly known as RSV. The symptoms in an adult are similar to a cold, but are viral instead of bacterial. RSV can be quite serious in a young baby 6 weeks old and younger, especially preemies.

RSV is probably the bug that has been going around our church, but we probably would not have known it if Candice had not tested positive for it. I took her to the emergency room early (and I do mean early) this morning for holding her breath, and they admitted her to watch her.

Candice had very mild symptoms that did not get serious at all. But because RSV affects the airways, which happen to be quite small in an infant, and because she was holding her breath, the doctor wanted to keep her for monitoring. She is home now and still sick but seems to be taking the virus in stride.

On another note, the hospital had these nifty Purell dispensers that automatically spray hand sanitizer in your hand when you hold it under the dispenser. They are so neat…until you sit in a chair that happens to be right underneath a dispenser! Hand sanitizer instantly becomes hair sanitizer!:)

It’s Free!

A couple of years ago, someone told me about a website you could go to and get free stuff. Usually when you hear of a site like that, you expect hidden cost or something you have to do to get the free stuff. In this case, the stuff is genuinely free except for the gas you use going to pick it up. This site is availabe in many areas and invites you to start a group in your area if there isn’t one. Check out freecycle!

The downside of freecycle is that you must become a member to view listings, and to become a member, you must have a yahoo ID. But the sign-up process doesn’t take long and is free. It might be worth your while.

One of the many positives of freecycle is that their goal is to keep good usable stuff out of landfills. Furniture, clothing, and many other items can be recycled kind of like paper, plastic, and glass!

We have gotten good use out of freecycle both in Nashville, TN and here in Rhode Island. We have gotten a baby swing, walker,stroller, high chair, clothing, bunk beds, and many other items from freecycle, and most of the time the items were in good shape! I just got some clothing for Candice, and it looks and smells brand new!

So, if there is something you need or want, why not try out freecycle before you spend money. You could save anywhere from a couple of dollars to a couple hundred dollars. Go ahead. Try it. You know you want to! 🙂

Bethany is Two!

Last Thursday was Bethany’s birthday. Since we had just moved, we didn’t have anything special planned. We decided at the last minute to do a mini party, and this is how it all came together. I took Bethany with me to the grocery store to let her help pick a small cake from the bakery (a first for us, by the way). She picked green. On the way home, I remembered that we had green disposable plates and napkins at home.

Luke decided to help the other kids make little boxes out of paper. He chose green construction paper to go along with the already green color theme. During supper we were teasing about all the green, and mentioned that we might need to color our noses green, too. Then I remembered that we had the DVD If Only I Had a Green Nose by Max Lucado. The perfect “green” activity to help calm everyone down for bed! To top it off, we painted our noses green, too!






Breastfeeding a Newborn

Okay, I know many of my readers aren’t interested in learning about how to be successful at breastfeeding a newborn. I am always forgetting what I did in the early days, and what I did this time (under the advice of nurses and lactation consultants) was very successful. The best way I know to keep track of it is to put it here in my blog for reference. So bear with me as I use my blog as my memory!

The first day or two in the hospital I nursed on demand. She did do a lot of cluster feeding, probably because she had to nurse often to get enough colostrum to satisfy her. After the first 2 days, I fed her every three hours night and day, even if I had to wake her up.

It is also probably useful to mention that you cannot use wet and dirty diapers to determine whether the baby is getting enough to eat during the first few days. They are only expected to have 1 wet diaper for each day in age for the first 3 days.

Once she reached her birth weight, I was able to feed her on demand as long as she wasn’t going more than 4 hours in the day or 6 hours at night without eating. She reached her birth weight very quickly using these guidelines! And she is now a little over the 50th percentile for weight, length and head measurement!

A Great Mommy Resource

Candice has been having occasional wake-up spells in the evening. During these spells, she nurses about every hour and is awake and fussing in between. This tends to last for 4 hours or so. I think it might have to do with growth spurts, but I’ve never experienced this with my other little ones. I found a great online article that addresses this evening fussy time. is a great resource for parents regardless of how many kids they have! It gives more details than you could imagine and is very well put together. Check it out!


While cleaning our old apartment in our recent move, I discovered a cleaning product that I will never forget! We had many black marks on our walls, and our apartment manager had told us that they planned to paint the walls. Any dark marks would show through the paint, so we were asked to remove them. They suggested using Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. I figured it was worth a try and got one from the store.

I was absolutely amazed at how well the Magic Eraser worked! I wet the sponge, rubbed gently on the wall, and black crayon marks erased easily from the wall! It also worked on marker and furniture marks! I was quite impressed! I plan to keep one around the house from now on!

5 Munchkins at the Mart

A few days ago I made my first adventurous trip to Wal-Mart with 5 children. It has been quite a while since I made that venture with just 4 kids, so I was expecting something near chaos! I am quite pleased to say that things went quite well! Praise the Lord for those carts that have seats for toddlers on the front! I felt like Super Mom!