Monday, March 2, 2015

Real Talk: Feeding Essentials for Baby

When I found out I was pregnant with Mason, I knew exactly what I wanted to get. Literally, I got my positive pregnancy test and immediately made my baby registry.  I decided to share what I have had good experiences with, so maybe some first time moms can gather up as many opinions as possible on what you need, might need, and definitely don't need.

Today's real talk is all about feeding. Throughout the post, you will find some links - these go to Amazon (not affiliate links), where I purchased most of my baby items. If they don't have a link, I most likely shopped at Target in person. Images are from Target's website.

Real Talk: Feeding Essentials for Baby | My list of must-haves for feeding baby #motherhood #momtalk #baby #bottlefeeding #breastfeeding

The big thing with feeding a baby is deciding on formula vs. breastfeeding. I have done both with both kids. Matthew made it only 1 month breastfeeding because I was very uneducated and dried up slowly, as if I wasn't breastfeeding at all. Cami made it 6 months breastfeeding because I was more well-versed on the topic, but she had a mind of her own from the get-go and one day decided to NOT take my milk anymore and out of desperation, I gave her some of the formula Matthew was on (to gain weight after an elimination diet) and she sucked it down. She refused to go back to breastmilk. My goal with Mason is to make it to a year.

Regardless of which route you go, I think bottles are an essential thing to have. Especially if you ever try to do a date night or work while breastfeeding, it's nice to be able to still give your baby the best of the best, but let someone else feed them. Plus it's nice for dad and siblings to bond through feedings :)

The essentials that make my list for feeding baby are:

  • Avent bottles - I got two sets of 5 for both 4 oz size and 9 oz size. All with size 1 nipples. I used these with both Matt & Cami. They are my absolute favorite. There is a new design now, but I got the Classic because I'm set in my ways :)
  • Bibs - they are handy for liquid feedings. Can't tell you how many times the kids let milk/formula dribble into their neck area! I prefer the cotton over the terry cloth. Cotton seems to stay soft after washing.
  • Burpcloths - I used both the actual burpcloths they sell in stores (again prefer cotton) and Gerber's cloth diapers (the really thick ply ones) for burping.
  • Boppy pillow - whether you get a name brand or off brand....they are incredible. We also used them for tummy time and sleeping. I have one that looks similar in pattern to the one pictured.
Some more real talk here...I preferred exclusively pumping after 6 weeks of pain and complete and utter emotional, mental, and physical draining with my daughter. I know many moms enjoy the act of breastfeeding, but I am not one of them. I did, however, turn into a milk machine and pumped way more than enough to feed her and then some. These next essentials apply to exclusive pumpers and I would say those working moms who also pump quite a bit.
  • Double electric breast pump - the reason I dried up with my first was because I had a single manual and it did NOTHING. Double electrics are the way to go! I prefer Lansinoh's.
  • Breast pads - you're gonna leak...these are a must! I use disposable ones, but may invest in washable ones after I get through my first box.
  • Breastmilk storage bags - if you pump, these are also a must! Again, I prefer Lansinoh's.
  • Lanolin cream - soothing for cracks and soreness :)
Things that I think are a hit or miss:
  • Bottle brush - they can be handy for cleaning bottles, but I don't think that you absolutely must have them. I tried to rinse bottles as soon as the kids were done eating to prevent any type of build up. They were washed in the dishwasher too.
  • Nursing bras/tanks - I personally got so sick of the little latch thing and ended up just using regular camisoles. I never had an issue with access. I will say that I got some nursing sports bras for this go-around, but that's partly because when I got new bras for postpartum in Feb/Mar I found out they fit me better than my current bras and sports bras are stretchy.
  • Nursing covers - I had one, but rarely used it with my daughter. It was easier to grab her blanket and secure a corner in my bra strap LOL
Don't waste your money (in my opinion) on:
  • A bottle warmer - when I did formula, it was quicker to use lukewarm water, plus formula dissolved better. I think bottle warmers are more hectic than helpful.
  • Bottle dishwasher holder - again...more hectic than helpful.
  • Bottle drying rack - just use your regular drying rack or set a towel on the counter!
And there you have it - my list of essentials for feeding a baby - plus things I'm on the fence with after 3 kids and things I think are a waste of money, space, and time. Feel free to comment on your favorite baby items for feeding and things you found more hassle than help!

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