Set every August for the first seven days of the month, World Breastfeeding Week aims to highlight the huge benefits that breastfeeding can bring to both the health and welfare of babies, as well as a wider push for maternal health, focusing on good nutrition, poverty reduction and food security. #WBW2020 will focus on the impact of infant feeding on the environment/climate change and the imperative to protect, promote and support breastfeeding for the health of the planet and its people.
The event is organised every year by the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA), a global network that aims to protect, promote and support breastfeeding around the world. Along the way, it works with the World Health Organization and Unicef to get its aid to the right people in the right communities. Having the right breastfeeding support can be key to to a positive breastfeeding experience. If you live in the UK click here to see some of the breastfeeding support networks in your area. Read more anout WBW2020 here
These recipes aren't too different to standard smoothies but they contain ingredients that are said to help boost milk supply (Woop Woop!) According to Belly Belly, fenugreek, oats, brewer's yeast, and nuts can all increase lactation. Spinach and flax contain phytoestrogens which is thought to promote lactation, as well. Having them in smoothie form can also make them easier and tastier to drink. Some of these recipes also have added energy boosting ingredients like bananas which also give sleep deprived mamas a little boost!
Banana and oat lactation smoothie
Ingredients 1 Banana 1 cup of Almond Milk 1/4 cup of Oats 1-2 TBS of Honey 1 TBS of Flax Seed Oil 1 TBS of Chia Seed 1/2 cup of Ice Sprinkle of Cinnamon
Method Place all ingredients into your blender. Blend on high for 1 minute, or until smooth.
We've get lots of posts from guest bloggers submitted, but one of the most common topics mums have struggled with is the loneliness associated with parenting. We've put together a list of top ways to meet other mums to help!
During Pregnancy Joining an NCT group or attending a pregnancy yoga group is a great way to start building parenting friends even before baby arrives.
Postnatal groups Many areas offer free postnatal groups for new mums with similar age babies. This is a great way to meet other mums at the same baby stage as you. Ask your Midwife, health visitor, or local children's center if these are offered in your area.
Your local children's center Children's centers often run lots of baby friendly groups some may be one off or drop in events and others may be short courses on topics such as baby massage. The staff there will also be knowledgeable about other local groups that would suit you and your baby.
Facebook Most areas have a Facebook parenting group for your local town or area. Don't be afraid to ask for recommendations of good places to go with a newborn or places to meet other mums. You will likely find there are a whole range of baby and toddler groups going on for you to try. If you just have a new baby you might prefer to look for specific groups for under one year olds which will be less hectic than toddler groups and have other mums at a similar stage of parenting as you.
Join a class Although usually more expensive than drop in coffee mornings and more casual mum groups, signing up for a specific class can be a great way to meet other parents. There are lots to choose from including, baby massage, Baby Sensory, baby yoga etc. You'll also find that if you're booking on for a 6 week course of something that everyone will be 'new' and and few people will know each other already so starting conversations may be less daunting than going to an already established group.
Use your local library You may not have stepped foot in here for years (if ever!) but lots of libraries run sessions like baby rhymetime or storytime aimed at under one year olds. It's also worth remembering too that they're also incredibly parent friendly places so if you need to stop to breastfeed when out and about it's usually a great, free place to do so.
Apps Using apps such as Mush are a great way to find other mums who are looking for friends your local area.
Top tips! Be brave Be the person that initiates conversation or arranges for everyone to go for coffee after a class.
Be a regular! Attending regularly will help you get to know people better and quicker.
Look for groups for your age baby You'll likely find you have more in common with other mums at these groups. They're also much calmer and you'll find that mum's often have more time to chat here than when they're chasing after older children and toddlers!
Cloth nappies have had quite the overhaul in recent years: Raggedy fabrics and safety pins are out and beautiful prints with modern fastenings are in! Using cloth nappies needn't be a complete swap from disposables either as many people use a combination of cloth and disposable nappies and find that part time cloth is what works for them. Still thinking about using cloth nappies? Here are some of the pros and cons and figure out if they’re the right fit for your family.
The Environment They’re reusable meaning a huge reduction in nappies going to landfill where it's estimated they can take anywhere between 250 and 500 years to decompose. Even just replacing one disposable nappy per day will save on average of 700 nappies going to landfill per child. Other environmental benefits will depend on how many cloth nappies you choose to buy and where they are manufactured to determine the full environmental benefit eg buying second hand is a lot more environmentally friendly than buying new. But on the whole even factoring in manufacture and washing costs cloth nappies are considered much more environmentally friendly than disposables.
Avoids Chemicals Disposable nappies contain chemicals which many mums prefer to avoid and can irritate a baby's bottom.
Cost It's estimated that the cost of using disposable nappies varies from £210-£450 per year depending on brand and number of changes per day. As most children don’t potty train until at least 2 years old the cost of disposables really adds up. Cloth nappy costs also depend on the type of nappy you choose and the brand. Although it can be considered expensive to start, the savings over two years can be anywhere between £80-£700. Plus cloth nappies can be used for more than one child so if you reuse your cloth nappy stash with future babies it won't cost you any more other than washing costs. Cloth nappies also hold their value incredibly well for reselling after you've finished so many people make a good chunk of their initial investment back at the end of their cloth nappy journey.
Never running out! Ok, so you may run out of clean cloth nappies if you're not on top of your washing but switching to cloth should mean mo more panicked trips to collect emergency nappies and no more nappies taking up valuable space in your shopping trolley.
Potential for easier and earlier potty training Cloth diapers are thought to promote early potty training because your baby can actually feel the wetness against their skin. Disposables are so good at whickimg moisture away from baby that children can take longer to realise when they're going for a wee thus often making potty training a little harder.
Solid waste gets flushed down the toilet Breastfed poos can be washed out in the washing machine and post weaning poos can be emptied into the loo and flushed immediately. So no more poos sitting in your bin and festering on those hot summer days!
Less nappy rash Cloth nappies are made of natural breathable fibers which allow air to circulate around baby's bottom therefore reducing the likelihood of nappy rash.
They look beautiful! There really is a whole world of beautiful cloth nappies available for your little one. From colourful prints to solid colours there really is something for everyone!
High upfront cost You'll pay for most of your nappies early on in your baby's life rather than spreading the cost through their whole nappy journey as you would with disposables so you will have to pay out more in the beginnning.
Convenience They need to be clean and dry for you to use so you need to be a bit more organised to ensure you have them ready for your little one. Plus if you run out when out and about you can't always find them in shops as readily as you would disposables.
Time It can take time to find the right fit for your child and the right style that works for your lifestyle, although this is often also the case when using disposables. You will probably want to research the different types available and experiment with a few different brands before investing too heavily in one brand or style. Local nappy librarys can help a great deal with this but can be dependent on the area you live in.
Extra washing Most people wash their nappies every 2-3 days to ensure they have fresh nappies available which does mean extra loads in the washing machine which can be more challenging especially if you're reliant on a laundromat rather than having your own machine or struggle for space for things to dry in colder months.
Greater chance of leaks Cloth nappies aren’t as absorbent as their disposable counterparts, making them more prone to leaks. You’ll have to make sure you have the right kind and number of insert(s) to accommodate your wetter. You’ll also need to make sure you have a proper fit, with no gaps around your baby’s legs or very soon you could be spotting wet patches on your little one.
You have to clean poo off them Yes, cloth nappies require you clean the poo off of them before washing if your baby has been weaned onto solids so theyre not for the very squeemish or poo averse. (Realistically though many mums become quite desensitised to poo after having a baby and don't find this a huge drawback!)
They can look more bulky Cloth nappies tend to be bigger so you might find certain styles of clothes (such as skinny jeans) more challenging to wear.
Spriraling costs With all the beautiful prints available like anything some people can become addicted to buying the newest print or style to match to baby's wardrobe or for special occasions. This can mean you end up spending much more than you really need to.
I remember asking a lot of mum friends how it was having two when I still just had the one. It was clear everyone has a different experience with their second child. A big factor that came in to play was the age gap between babies but regardless there were still lots of similarities with what people said, things I can now identify with having two myself with a two year age gap.
Everything was unknown first time round First time round everything was new to us as parents. Each week or month it felt like there was a new milestone or development we needed to be supporting our child with and each seemed to require hours of Google research before we could make a decision on how to tackle it. I felt like I was always worrying if I was doing the right thing. Second time round you have the benefit of experience and hindsight, you know what works for you and your family whether it be sleep routines, weaning or simple logistics of the best way to get from A to B. It's a good feeling to finally realise just how much you have learnt from your first child.
Time Looking after one baby was a full time job, everything was carefully scheduled around naps, mealtimes and bedtime. When I had my second it was very different as number 2 just had to slot in around my first's routine and actually that worked fine, especially in the early days when you really appreciate just how much they sleep to begin with! Yes it's hectic with two, there were certainly times when I looked back and wondered what on earth I was doing all day with just one especially when I hit that magical period with one child who always took a two hour afternoon nap - those were the glory days! Also with two I really learnt how to juggle lots of plates at once, whether it be entertaining a toddler while breastfeeding, keeping two entertained in the supermarket trolley or pottytraining one while dealing with a newborn. Multitasking became second nature and baby wearing was a total lifesaver to free up my hands!
Clothes First time around we bought clothes as and when we needed them and carefully washed and stored them when they had been grown out of. Second time round we seem to have endless stashes of clothes in various sizes: Things for child 1 to grow in to, things child 1 wears, things child 1 has grown out of but are still too big for child 2, things for child 2, plus all of the things child 2 has grown out of that you can't bear to part with or are saving just incase you have a third. Every spare cupboard or drawer is crammed full with clothing that doesn't currently fit either of your children but cannot possibly be parted with at the moment.
Photos First time around I had photos that probably captured every single day of my baby's first year thanks to the convenience of camera phones. Second baby has significantly less photos. I suppose I can't spend hours snuggling and photographing my little one while they nap so I have a lot less 'sleeping' baby photos but also the speed of daily life means I just don't mange to take nearly as many as I'd like.
Sibling love Sibling love is amazing. I worried they wouldn't bond or that number 1 would feel left out when number 2 arrived. I know every family is different but we've been really lucky, watching their little bond grow each day has been one of my favourite parts of parenting and makes the madness all worth it.