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Babycare, birthing centres, breastfeeding, breastmilk, funny, natural parenting, neonatal, new born, new born baby, new mom, new mothers, nursing wear, paediatricians, parenting, Uncategorized

5 Breastfeeding Myths Busted

Pregnancy and motherhood open a gateway to the Myth-world! There is too much of information that is dumped on these new moms, most of which is nothing but myth.

Motherhood would be so much better and lesser of a worry if we didn’t have people burdening us with their belief system or with anecdotal advices.

I have been an exclusively breastfeeding mom for the first 6months of my child’s birth and I am still nursing him at 28months. This post is to bust a few of the myths that most new moms are confronted with.

Read on and do share this article with expecting and new moms.

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activity, Babycare, Lifestyle and health, new mothers, parenting, toddler, Uncategorized

Quick Birthday Checklist that you shouldnt miss!

Are you planning your child’s birthday?

Here is a post for you to streamline your planning.

Birthdays have never been so exciting before. Well, yes, I used to be excited about my birthdays, but never did I get into such strategic details and planning before, I guess no one does until they have a baby.

This reminds me of A’s first birthday celebration and sleepless nights I had before it. It was even worse than those exam jitters. The first birthday celebration was a big affair and I wanted to do it the green way, check out the link to my blog here

Here is a basic birthday checklist that I am following for A’s second birthday.

1. Guest list- your guest list is the first thing before you start thinking about any event. It will give you an idea of what kind of venue you can book, once your guest list is in place you can decide about the menu and head count. So, basically it is the first step. For kid’s birthday party it is important that you have an age wise list of kids and also list the adults who will be attending the party (your menu may differ for kids and adults or a common kid friendly menu)

From the guest list arrive at a number that will definitely attend the party, make this number your minimum guarantee for booking the venue.

2. Venue- for smaller numbers and bigger houses a house party is the best and most economical way to celebrate. However, there are good options available now for birthday parties. From Quick Service Restaurants(QSRs) to banquets to play areas all are tapping birthday party market. Decide what fits your bill and book weeks in advance.

3. Invite- Create an invite that talks about the birthday theme, the invite should have following details

Date, Time, Venue, RSVP contact and any other note that you may want to include regarding theme etc.

4. Theme – Decide onto theme if any, so that you can work out other things like return gift, decor, outfits etc based on the theme.

5. Return gift- Return gifts or party favours have become like a mandate for kids’ birthday parties. I can’t forget how I used to wait to receive mine as a kid. Base the return gift on the theme and also keep in mind the age of the child you are giving it to.

Also consider the packaging, it should be attractive and easy to carry. Ensure what you are gifting is secured in the package.

6. Menu to be finalised- menu would depend on the time of the party. Kid’s love junk, parents love junk too, but parents hate feeding junk to their kids. Avoid keeping junk food in the menu.

7. Birthday Cake-  This post has taken me years back, how magical was the moment when mom put the big colorful cake in front with fancy candles; all the eyes focussed on the bday kid and the cameras flashing khachaak!! Somethings never change and why should they?

The only change is that there are better options available now offering fancier cakes and making our jobs tougher.

Try choosing the patisserie that you or your friends have tried and tested(tasted) before.
1 kg cake can suffice for 8-12 people. Before finalising the size, keep in mind other desserts that you have in the menu and the shape of the cake.

8. Party Games, prizes and props- Party Games/ entertainment is life of any party, choose games as per the age of invitees. Try to include games that all can participate in and have prizes that would suit all.  Keep a few extra prizes just in case there is a kid who asks for a prize or there is a tie between two winners.
Keep hats, masks etc or any other prop to go with your birthday theme, keep those handy for all to pick.

9. Photographer- Be it a house party or a party elsewhere someone needs to capture your precious moments. Have one person dedicated for it. It could be  a friend/ relative or a professional photographer.

10. Birthday kid dress and outfits for others in the family- well, this one is important but not as much as other points above. Choose a comfortable outfit for your child and carry an extra pair ( If the party is being organised away from home).

Easy isn’t it? Well, no. This is just a checklist, doing all or even a few of the above will take your time, efforts and of course money; but will also give you lots of precious smiles, laughter & memories in return.

Happy planning and executing. Do share your birthday party planning tips in the comments.

 

capsule wardrobe, fashion, Lifestyle and health, modern moms, mothercare, new mom, new mothers, nursing gown, nursing wear, post-partum

Capsule wardrobe ideas for a new mom

Hello people,

The New Year is right here with lots of excitement, hopes and new beginnings, to welcome the coming year with swag and style, we have come together to bring plethora of fashion inspiration in this “Fashion-a-thon” a fashion blog-train initiative by Ruchie of Wigglingpen.

Before you move ahead and see what I have in store for you please check out what Sayeri says on her lovely fashion blog– Here.

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back to basics, cloth diapers, eco-friendly, natural parenting, new mothers, prepping, stripping, sustainability, washing the cloth diapers

Prepping, Washing, Storing and Stripping the Cloth Diapers

You have landed on this page, probably because you are keen on starting to cloth diaper your baby or you are already doing it and want to know, how others deal with cloth diapers’ nitty-gritties.
We begin with prepping the diapers.
Your fluff mail has arrived and you can’t wait to see the little bums dressed bright and beautiful; but  heyy, hold on; you’ve got to wait! It is important to prepare the diapers for use, mainly for two reasons:
a.       Hygiene: Just like you wash any other piece of cloth before putting it on to your baby’s sensitive skin, these diapers too need to be pre-washed.

b.       Absorbency: The natural fibres (cotton and hemp) have residual oil that restricts the absorbency, hence you need multiple washes before you can use them
Now, the question is how do you prep the diapers? Mostly you will find the prepping and washing instructions mentioned on the packaging that the diapers come in.
However, the simplest way to prep is giving a wash in detergent and then run a few (2-3) more wash cycles in regular (without detergent) water. This will get rid of the residual oils and any detergent from your first wash. The synthetic fibres like polyester and microfibres can be just washed with detergent and given a second run in regular detergent-free cycle.
Washing the diapers
The solids are to be knocked off before putting the diapers for wash. For pocket diapers, what I follow is just knock off the solids, good if it falls off easily, if it doesn’t then I gently take the insert out and use hand-faucet to get rid of the remaining sticky poop. This helps in avoiding the inserts from staining. Once the solids are taken off, I just wash the diaper with regular water and put it in the diaper pail.
Initially, I hand washed all the baby clothes, but I have found machine wash better than hand washing. I use regular detergent (Tide/surf excel/Ariel) and they seem to do pretty good job for me. You could also give a try to the eco-friendly detergents that are available in the market. Conditioners and fabric softeners are a big No-No for CDs, as they tend to leave a non-absorbent coat on the fabric, which may affect the absorbency of the diaper.
After machine/hand wash it is always better to sun-dry the diapers, the ultra-violets rays from the sun helps killing the bacteria. Sun drying also helps in lightening the stains; you know how a piece of colourful cloth or plastic lightens in colour once left in the sun for too long? Similarly, the CD stains too get light or vanish post sun-drying.
 Folding and keeping the diapers
For some time initially, I would just keep the inserts and diapers separately; but I realised that stuffing the cover/pocket diapers and then storing saves much time and is extremely convenient during diaper changing sessions.
How I fold the diapers:-
Step one: Stuff the diaper with the insert

Step Two: Lay the diaper flat, wrong side up

Step Three: Fold the front part towards inside, and keep rolling until it becomes compact like the picture below (in step 4).

Step Four: Button it up tight.

I stack my stash in a drawer Konmari style.

Stripping the Cloth Diapers

If you have just started Cloth diapering, then you need not have to worry about stripping for many months to come, until your diapers start stinking awfully bad like ammonia. The diapers start stinking mostly because of the detergent build-up or if they aren’t being cleaned properly. Initially I was handwashing our diapers and in few months, they started smelling bad; I had to strip them and now I have switched to washing machine completely.
Stripping is mainly getting rid of the detergent build up. Please read the warranty (if any) of your diapers, because sometimes the warranty may get void if you strip the diaper.
How I stripped our diapers; well, I soaked them (clean diapers) in hot water for more than 30 minutes (we don’t have any hot water connection to our washing machine) and then ran 2 wash cycles (without detergent). I found bubbles in the water, which is an indication of detergent build up. I then line-dried them, n they haven’t smelled that bad again.
Sometimes you may have to add bleach if simple hot water stripping doesn’t work. Adding ½ cup of bleach to the first wash cycle and then run 2-3 wash cycles and an extra rinse cycle will help you get rid of any bleach residue.
To avoid diapers from smelling bad it is advisable to rinse right after use and store them in an airy container or pail. Wash them thoroughly and use warm water cycles and an extra rinse cycle. Washing them everyday or alternate day helps tremendously.

Other things that have been great aids in my CDing journey so far are:-
1. A Diaper Pail









2. Eco-friendly CD liners









3. Wet Bag









That’s it from me.

This was my experience of cleaning/storing/washing and stripping the diapers. If you have more to add, please share it here with me.

Happy Diapering!

annaprashan, baby, babyfood, babyled weaning, breastmilk, cerelac, first foods, infant, new mothers, weaning

“Annaprashan ” The first Food ceremony

Image source: FreeFoodPhotos.com

6 months passed by and it looked like a thing of yesterday when we were all excited yet nervous about the delivery, anxiously waiting each day if it will happen today; and after the birth, as the 6 months mark approached it hit me that my baby was about to move a little further from me, beginning the solid food journey. The selfish mother in me was a little sad, seeing time fly out of my hands, it was just 6 months and I could already imagine him 6, 16 and 26 years old an independent young boy!!



I consider myself blessed as my breastfeeding journey has been smooth ever since the first moment we were born (baby A and the mommy me) and baby was put on my breast. I have read and heard horrid breastfeeding stories and struggles of new moms. My heart goes out to all the mommies who have or are struggling with breast-feeding; and the only advice I have is to tell them to hang in there; you have come this far, it too shall pass. Just don’t give up and give in to the various suggestions of all the well-intentioned aunties, those who ask you to start solids sooner than 6 months and those who tell you that your supply isn’t enough (well-intentioned, well they sure are)

The first-food ceremony in many parts of India is called Annaprashan (feeding ceremony where “anna” meaning grains or food). We had a pooja at home that was followed by feeding the baby and then a ritual wherein we keep different articles like book, pen, currency notes, a bit of soil, knife etc on a tray. The baby is expected to touch one of these, and the first thing that the baby puts his hand on is symbolic of what his future will be. It’s a funny ritual that only adds amusement to the ceremony. A initially held the entire tray; today’s babies you see, they want it all. Later he picked up a book and a pen.

A day before A’s annaprashan, I prepared date syrup to be used in the kheer that we planned to feed him as his first food; I wanted to avoid sugar completely hence date syrup. The memory of annaprashan is not a pleasant one for me as it left A with an upset stomach for almost 3 weeks, and it totally sapped me off emotionally and physically. Apparently, A was fed a bit of sweet from the market and that’s what I suspect did trouble to his tiny immature system. Well it could also be because of those few drops of kheer or little water that was offered.

Kheer
The first food of our baby

Soon after he completed 6 months and got back to his normal healthy self, I started off with solids for him. Steamed and mashed apple being the first thing, followed by banana, moong dal khichdi, avocado and naachni/ragi porridge. 

In the first month of feeding (7th month) we followed 1 meal a day and increased one meal each month; by the time we were 10 months old we had 4-5 meals schedule which included 3 major meals and 2 snacks/fruits. 
Other dishes that were offered during first few months:-
1. Nachni/ragi pancakes (egg/ eggless both)
2. Oats idli
3. Moongdal cheela
4. Beetroot parantha
5. Homemade potato fries (for snacks)
6. Homemade sweet potato fries (for snacks)
7. Makhana/lotus seeds fried in ghee (for snacks)
8. Ragi porridge
9. Khichdi
10. Porridge from homemade cereal powder mix.
11. Oats porridge
12. Oats pancake
13. Steamed broccoli florets
14. Steamed beetroot
15. Sautéed paneer (cottage cheese)

As you go about feeding solids to the baby, remember to not reduce or stop the breastmilk or formula. Formula/breastmilk should ideally remain the primary source of nutrition till the baby is 1 year. Go slow and do not worry about how little the baby is consuming, keep a check on pee and poo and that the baby is active and happy; that’s all that matters.

Happy feeding and happy weaning

Click here to see things to keep in mind while starting solids

Also do let me know in comments, how the first-food ceremonies are held in your culture?