if you read my earlier post, you know that my baby has been on a combo diet of breastmilk and formula. so what do you really need for that first year? like i’ve said before, i’m no expert but this is what i’ve found in my early stages of motherhood:
i really didn’t know what to expect when it came to baby bottles, so i sought out the expert advice of (A) my doctors – first my OB and then my pediatrician and of course (B) my momma. all said the exact same thing. it does NOT matter what bottle you use. at all. me being me, i still looked into it a little further. i didn’t really know how many i would need. i landed on tommee tippee (pictured below). i loved the nipple shape (they closely resemble a breast) and the fact they came highly regarded didn’t hurt either. per my mom’s advice, i didn’t purchase a whole bunch because she said that sometimes babies don’t like certain bottles. so i got a starter pack.
i figured since i was going back and forth from breast to bottle that this would help everett avoid nipple confusion. he took right to them! they are super easy to clean and he has NOT ONE TIME had a battle with gas or anything. to be completely honest, the kid has only thrown up two times in his short one year of life. i love these bottles – and highly recommend. now, as far as how many, we got away with only using a few. we have the three pack of 5 ounce bottles and then i have four 9 ounce bottles. he cannot use the 5 ounce bottles any longer – he eats too much! i found that you really don’t need many bottles for feeding. where you will need bottles is for breast milk storage or breastmilk storage bags. we just use the bottles throughout the day and wash as needed. my doc said you don’t even need to do the boiling of the nipples and all that any more – like our moms did. so my advice, don’t purchase a million bottles, you won’t need them. just get a few of the small size and a few of the larger size, and you’ll be set!
i am so happy that i decided to breastfeed. i wasn’t a huge advocate of actually nursing, but when i did it – i loved it. since i had a lot of trouble with supply, i had to use the pump almost from day one. i have a pump similar to this and pictured above (mine looks a little different because i received it through insurance but it’s the exact same thing functionally). the double electric pump is the way to go. it is more convenient and will express more from you in a shorter amount of time. the medela brand is the most recommended and most used. i love it and am still using it! i do recommend stocking up on milk storage bags. i use these. the other brands leak. i love my pump and thank goodness for it, or everett would not get any mommy’s milk! now, one of my friends is on her third baby and has thrown a new item into the mix: a manual pump. i have not tried this method. she has claimed that it is one of the best things she has used early on in nursing her nearly two-month old. it does allow you to control how long the suction lasts and helps get a better let-down. i’m not much in the way of knowledge on this, but i will tell you – when i have another baby, i will absolutely be purchasing one to use in the early months. she has this one and it is also a medela.
i HIGHLY recommend nursing bras. one, because they are structurally made to accommodate an expanding bust and, two, because it is a pain to constantly have to undo your regular bra. i always wear one – pumping or nursing, awake or asleep. the bra keeps the girls in place and it’s comfy. i have a few of these from target. are they the best? i can’t say. i’ve heard great things of the bravado brand and i think i will purchase some for my next rodeo. i really like these, also found at target. i would purchase a few to have variety and also to accommodate leakage. you may find one brand is more comfortable than another. i have a nude, black, and purple one. stay away from underwire. it’s uncomfortable and can push against your milk glands, which can be painful at times and can also cause some decrease in that duct’s milk production (or so i’ve read). most nursing bras are wireless!
i don’t have a sterilizer – and i don’t use the dishwasher. i actually just hand wash all of rett’s bottles, nipples, pump parts, and pump bottles with very hot water and all natural soap. i have this drying rack, which i absolutely love (pictured below). it holds a lot and allows the air to circulate to dry the bottles and parts efficiently.
okay, so two pillows are important here: one for breastfeeding and one for sleepy. i received the boppy breastfeeding pillow (pictured below) as a gift. i took it to the hospital with me and used it at home A LOT. i loved that thing! it also came in extremely handy when everett was starting to sit up (it provided extra support in case he fell over and promoted good balance for him) and it also was excellent for tummy time – apart from the obvious use with nursing. you can get covers or just use it ‘naked’. i have a cover on mine in case of milk leakage or spit up. i definitely recommend getting one of these! this one is newer. it’s a two-sided version. i haven’t looked into it much, but it seems really practical and neat! maybe it’s worth looking into?
as far as YOUR sleeping goes. i am an advocate of pregnancy pillows if you like your sleep! i had this one. i hate it. reason? it worked fine for the majority of it’s use, but it got flat-ish. i also don’t like the fact that it velcros apart. since i was in a crunch and didn’t research it at the time, i got stuck with it. i will not be using this one for my next pregnancy. since then, i’ve done a lot of investigating and i will be purchasing a bump nest body pillow (pictured below). it’s washable, durable, and from what i’ve read and found from talking to lots of mommas that have them – the pillow doesn’t go flat. this is also great for creating a little ‘nest’ for baby – whether it’s in/on your bed or playing on the floor. it can act as a much larger boppy pillow on occasion. whatever you go with, you will want some sort of body pillow when your belly is bigger. it is nice to have some extra support and comfort to promote rest before the baby comes. it is also a good idea to have something for postpartum. you will want that extra support in bed until you heal up.
i hope there was some worthy info found here!