Saturday, 22 October 2016

10 foods to eat when you are breastfeeding..

Porridge Oats are a completely natural whole grain, high-fiber food. A bowl of porridge in the morning can help increase your milk supply. Plus, oats are high in iron; and iron-deficiency anemia, which is common in new mums and can affect your milk supply! 

Stocking your fridge with yogurt a smart move because the creamy stuff has got both protein and calcium! Just beware that some breastfeeding moms are told to give up dairy if baby is diagnosed with a milk protein intolerance. Signs your baby could be one of them include frequent spitting up, diarrhea, bloody stools, rashes, coughing and wheezing.

Brown rice
White or brown? Brown rice is better for you because it’s got more fiber and other nutrients. Complex carbs like brown rice (and porridge) help keep you full and keep your blood sugar at consistent levels (no drastic energy dips!). Brown rice does take a little longer to cook than white rice. If you don't have time, don't worry! Instant boil-in-bag brown rice has the same nutrition content as the regular kind, but require less effort.

Dates are another calcium-rich food, they’re thought to help increase milk supply, since they increase prolactin like apricots do. They’re also a high-fiber, naturally sweet treat. Their high finer content also helps keep your bowels regular! Which is great for after birth when you can become constipated! Chop some up and add them to your morning porridge! 

Fiber-rich kidney, black, pinto and other beans can be good for your digestive system, and they’re fantastic sources of iron and protein. 

Almonds aren’t just packed with protein; they’re a good non-dairy source of calcium. And the every little bit helps. Breastfeeding moms should take in 1000 mg of calcium per day. That’s because the milk you make is high in calcium, and if you don’t get enough in your diet, your bones and teeth could be robbed of calcium they need. There are some exceptions though. If you’re allergic to almonds, they’re obviously a no-no. And if your family history includes a history of nut allergies, you might want to hold off on them until your baby is at least 3 months old, since food proteins more easily pass from a mom to her baby’s bloodstream (via the baby’s gut) in the first three months of baby’s life.

This tasty, fatty fish might be the perfect meat for breastfeeding moms. It’s high in protein, and also contains large amounts of DHA, this type of fat is very important to the development of your baby’s nervous system. 

Apricots contain dietary fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C and potassium, all essential nutrients. Eating apricots can also increase prolactin—that's the hormone that tells your body to produce milk. Fresh, whole apricots are a better source of fiber than canned apricots; if you go canned, look for ones packed in water or natural juices, instead of sugary syrup. Dried apricots are also easy to toss in the diaper bag for an on-the-go snack.

Actually, pretty much any dark green, leafy veggie is a breastfeeding super food. That includes broccoli and Kale. They’re full of nutrients and even high in calcium. (This one’s for you vegan and veggie moms!) So you can get a veggie serving and a calcium-rich serving in one, delicious, leafy food. Plus, we love how versatile spinach can be. Eat it fresh in a salad, sautee it as a side, or add it to lasagna.

Sesame seeds
Who knew? Sesame seeds are packed with calcium, and are a good source of fiber, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, copper and manganese. Toast them and sprinkle them over a salad of dark leafy greens. Or add some to your veggies; green beans and sesame seeds are a tasty combo.

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

To epidural or to not epidural..

I had an epidural on my first two babies. I was a huge believer in pain relief, and I suppose looking back really didn't know too much about the side effects of having an epidural and really didn't care. I was too scared to do it without and totally thought there is nobody handing out medals at the end for bravery! I blame age, lack of education and definitely lack of explanation in my midwifery care and hospital.
On my first, Kyle in 2009 I had an epidural. He was a forceps delivery. Afterward I experienced horrific migraines to the point where I couldn't open my eyes... The epidural had gone too far and pierced my spinal cord. I had to have a blood patch done. Another epidural (basically) but it fed blood from my arm into my back to patch up the little tear. It worked immediately but I suffered with back pain for years as a result. And I was hospitalised again when he was 10 months old for horrific migraines again... 
When I was having Noa I thought I could try do without but once in labour with her the fear took over and I asked for an epidural. I had a long labour. I got the epidural at 2cm and it slowed everything down. By the time I was 10cm 10 hours later the epidural had semi worn off and I couldn't get another. She was born "star gazing" and got into difficulty which resulted in an episiotomy.. I felt everything.
I had all intention of getting an epidural on Briar again mainly out of fear. That I wouldn't be strong enough, capable enough, brave enough to do it without. How wrong I was....
All my intentions went out the window when she decided to arrive 6 mins after I got to the hospital. No time to get an epidural, no time to take a Panadol, no time to take my clothes off!!!! 
And what an easy birth hers was. Coincidence maybe but I think not.... I stayed at home doing things and walking around and this was my first pro during childbirth- gravity for sure helped my body with contracting effectively. When I was in transition I instinctively got onto all fours (in my hallway!!!) and this helped hugely with that... 
Lying in a hospital bed on your back with your legs numb is really not how Mother Nature intended us to give birth. 
I gave birth to her with one push and there was absolutely no intervention then or after. No stitches, no stinging, vertually no pain afterwards. I could walk, I could dance. I was on cloud nine! 
Briar was my third time to give birth so that could have played a big role but I am so thrilled to have proven to myself and maybe others that you don't need an epidural to give birth and if you are planning on one just be completely informed on pros, cons and side effects. 

Of course everyone is different. Every mothers preference and choice is different and no choice is right or wrong. The main thing is baby makes a safe arrival! 

Monday, 11 July 2016

Baby now teething ball...

My poor little baby has started teething months before her brother or sister ever did. So these teething balls came at just the right time! As soon as I took it out of the box the rattle inside caught Briar's attention... And still now two weeks later as soon as she hears it her head turns. So that is a great feature. For B it took her a while (she's still not a pro) to learn to grasp it. With all the bits to chew it did take her a while to learn which ones she likes and which ones she didn't. But once she did she absolutely loved it! Since receiving it I have given it to her every single day. It's my go to when she's cranky. And the little rattle noise stops her crying every single time.
We have a Sophie the giraffe too which she absolutely loves but she does get a bit frustrated with Sophie as it's hard to find an easy but to chew on. But with the Babynow teething ball the little bits are the perfect size for her to chew on. Each and every one of them!
It's 100% BPA free and child safe. Designed in Ireland! Two balls come in the box, in bright colours and textured surfaces to stimulate your child's senses! The surfaces help massage babies gums! 

Two come in each box in different colours so I gave one to a friend who's baby is just a little older than Briar Rose.... This was her opinion.... 
"Tom loves it, he really enjoys chewing the different textures. Sometimes I notice he finds one he really likes and no matter which way I give him the ball he chews that one. The only negative I would say is the bell inside, it's pretty annoying and now sure it's needed. Thanks again for sharing with us"

You can get yours from 

Disclaimer- I received this product for free for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

Saturday, 9 July 2016

Instead I held you....

Briar is going through her 4th leap at the moment and wants nothing but my arms..... 
It can be stressful but this time around... With baby number 3, I chose to embrace it! 

Today while Noa was having her nap B was so cranky I lay on the couch with her on my chest and she fell asleep... And so this blog post was inspired... 

I should be cleaning the kitchen and putting away the grocerys but instead I cuddled you...  

I should be hoovering the floors and mopping afterwards. But instead I kissed you and let you sleep.... 

I should be re-washing the clothes I left out in the rain last night and forgot to take in... But instead I held you tighter. 

I could be doing my hair and putting a little bit of make up on but instead I held you.. 

I should be running the piles of clothes in our kitchen through the dryer and put them away... But instead I kiss your tiny hand that is resting on my chest... 

Because one day that tiny little hand won't reach for me.
One day my chest won't be where she rests her head. 
One day her tiny hand won't fit in mine like this. 
And one day her tiny calm body won't fit on my chest anymore. 
So today....
I held you. 

Sunday, 8 May 2016

Surviving the first few days..

Those first few days while you are still in hospital with your beautiful little bundle are indescribable. You are so high on endorphins and adrenalin, and mainly high on love of your little one. You cant sleep if you wanted to because when you are not smiling and talking about your new baby you are staring at them. 
There is nothing at all for you to do but be gentle with yourself and look after your baby. Everything you need is within arms reach and your breakfast, lunch and dinner is made for you. 
All you really want to do is bring your little bundle home.. you big yourself up for the big day and first journey home....
Now what...

Here are a few little tricks to surviving those first few weeks (and months) of motherhood...

Accept Help:
This is my best advice I have ever given and been given. I dont know if it is an Irish or a pride thing, but us Irish have such a tendency to say no to help. The Irish "I'm grand" attitude.. But the more help you have the happier mom you will be- from my experience. When Briar was born my MIL brought over a cooked chicken and a little grocery shop and it was literally the best thing anyone could have done for me. 

Do nothing:
As a mum of three there is ALWAYS something to do. And I am never on top of everything at home. But getting through those first few days/weeks it's important to just switch off do nothing and lean a little bit heavier on your partner/husband. It might be hardier on them for a while but looking after a newborn especially if you have others kids is hard too. Especially if you are breastfeeding and doing all the nights too!

Its the good Oul "sleep when the baby sleeps" advice but it is so true. Sleep deprivation not only affects you mentally it leaves you looking drained, grey and it can start to takes its toll on you skin too. It's extremely hard to sleep when baby sleeps when you have other kids or an 18month old like I did but try go to bed super early or when baby starts to get into a bit of a routine go to bed when baby does! These days don't last forever but the days will be much easier and enjoyable when you've had more sleep! 

Eat well and Drink water: 
If you are breastfeeding you are already drinking litres of water!!!! But eating right and drinking enough water is essential for a successful breast feeding journey and also to help you look and feel better after delivery. Never skip a meal. 

Start your day on the right foot:
How you start your day can really effect how your whole day pans out. For me if I put on a little bit of make up, brush my hair and put on something that's not a tracksuit or lounge pants and my day is already looking brighter.. Now I'm not saying fresh hair and a full face of make up but a bit of mascara and a brush through your hair can make all the difference!! 

Work out:
At the end of those first few weeks my greatest tip is to walk or work out or both! Obviously check with your GP and make sure it's okay for you to start excersizing again and then the sky's the limit. For me working out or walking helps me mentally more than anything.

These tips aren't for everyone and as we know every mom is different. 
These worked for me.. 
Would love to hear your tips to. 

To see more follow me on Instagram and follow my snap chat "lovelifelittle1" and check out my what I get up to Wednesday's. 

Thanks for reading 

Sunday, 27 March 2016

One born every 6mins... Briar's Birth Story!

Let me just clarify Briar is my third. I have read "what to expect when you're expecting" cover to cover more times than I can recall, and have googled every labour sign, symptom and pain imaginable. 

Briar was born 6minutes after I got to the hospital... 

March 7th 2017...
I woke to a contraction.... Not a Braxton hick but a real coming in a wave gripping pain..... And breathe.. Contraction.

Felt another...

This carried on until the morning and I told Neil to go to work as he works in town and they were still 20 mins apart and might stop.... If I only knew... 

I dropped Kyle to school and as I was walking out of his yard I grabbed onto the pillar.. Unable to walk with the pain of another contraction. And just as quick it was gone. Am I imagining this?! I called my mum.. "This might be it but I'm not sure I'll keep you posted" 
I felt a little bit afraid to be honest, afraid of another traumatic birth like Noas. Afraid something might go wrong. Afraid of the pain. And afraid of leaving Noa without me and Kyle in school. 

My brother called around to my house for a "cuppa" (totally sent by my mum) and my contractions were now 5mins apart.. "I'll be fine when I get an epidural" I reassured my worried looking 22 year old brother! "I'll give Noa a bath and call mum home after" bare in mind Noas labour was 11 hours and Kyle was 9.. And not one to be a drama queen ;) I thought time was on my side! 

Draped over the bath the contractions were getting really intense... And I felt extreme pressure. 
"I'll just lie down for a few see how I feel" 


I called my mum.... 

She was in mine and told me to come downstairs and she would bring my to the hospital. 

I made it just to the end of the stairs and I was on all fours on the bottom step. Couldn't move, couldn't think, couldn't breathe.

All I managed was "call an ambulance"

My mum called an ambulance..

Mum called again... 

Two paramedics came into my hall, I'm still on all fours... 
"Don't worry love I've delivered loads of babies in my time" as he is popping on his blue latex gloves.. 

Not a chance... He was not delivering my baby! And after what happened with Noa I was way to scared to deliver at home..

So with that said they carried me to the ambulance...

Arrived at NMH. And God help whoever saw me being brought to the delivery room... I would say I scared the LIFE out of any first time expectant mothers.. 
Apologies, labours really not that bad!! ;) 

As soon as I spotted the midwife I said I need an epidural.. 
Why are woman so afraid to give birth without one?! Of course there was no time and the worst bit I knew was over but I felt I needed one to push her out.. 

She examined me and I was 10cm... 
Neil was right by my side (as always) and my mum.. 

Neil said "we are gonna meet our baby really soon" 
"I know honey.." I said, thinking yeah I get it... I know now I'm in labour... 

"No Laura her head is out..." And with one more push she was born... 

Our beautiful Sleeping Beauty was born... 
Briar Rose
7lb 4oz

I've only just gotten over the shock....
Thanks for reading... And following.. 

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Packing my hospital bag.....

Hi ladies,
I can't believe the time has come to write this blog post but this week was spending packing my hospital bag!!! 
I am 35weeks pregnant now and thought it best to get packing, especially with two little ones already at home! Better safe than sorry! 

My bag: 
The weightless cabin size suitcase I used for Noa and was just the right size. Small compact and exactly what I needed! My biggest advice is to not bring too much. You don't need it, and with everyone bringing in bits for you and baby anyway you go home feeling like you've stayed for two weeks!! 

The essentials- 
2nightgowns- these I picked up from penneys. I had the exact same with Noa design wise and they were perfect. Short sleeved so youre not too hot but cotton and heavy enough that they're not too flimsey. Buttons down the front for nursing too which is perfect! 

Dressing gown- again from penneys and actually I am just using the same one I brought on Noa Belle. 

I also picked up this maternity nightgown from primarks new maternity range! It has clips for nursing and will be perfect! At only €12 you literally can't go wrong!! 

Nursing bras: 
When I had Noa the best nursing bras I had were from mamas&papas at €40 for two. They were really comfortable and great quality so the price wasn't too much to me. But....
In primarks new maternity range they have these amazing nursing bras... Exact same as what I had before and €12 for both!!!! Sizes were limited so I could only get two but I will be back for more!! 

Again Primark! 

Baby bits:
It is very hard to judge sizes on what to bring in your bag for baby! Kyle was born 6lb11oz and all his newborn bits fit like a glove! Noa Belle was born 8lb6oz and all her new born bits were too small!!! 
New born goes up to 7lb8oz in next so I went for the "up to 1month" this time as it goes up to 10lbs and I would rather baby grows a little too big than too small like they were for Noa Belle! 

Toiletries are all usual bits! But my must have toiletries were for sure multi mam compresses....!!! Lifesavers for breast feeding!! And sore nipples. Johnsons breast pads. If your boobs are on the smaller side these are absolutely perfect! I'm a B and these git so comfortably! Last but not least essential was Carmex... This pregnancy has made my lips so dry and carmex is another lifesaver on that front. I also threw in some dry shampoo just incase I may not be able to wash my hair! 
The most important bit for me to put into my hospital bag was two little gifts from the baby to her big brother and sister... Just something small about €20 but I think it's a lovely idea and makes the day they meet her a little bit about them too. 

So hopefully I haven't forgetten anything and if I have that's what husbands are for ;) 
Now just to wait for her arrival.... 

Thanks for reading and please share away! 
Lots of love