Archives for September 2015

Breastfeeding and a Baby’s Brain Development

It’s a proven fact breastfeeding produces better brain development than formula or a combination of both. While breastmilk provides key elements for a baby’s health, it extends far beyond the basic nutrition. Breastmilk provides vital components that produce a balanced brain, which is needed during the first few years of your baby’s development.

Today we are going to discuss how breastfeeding helps develop your baby’s brain:

 

During the first years of your baby’s life, their brain develops quite rapidly. Their brains are mostly shaped around their experiences and observations. The close connection a baby shares with their mother while breastfeeding is one of these experiences that build a sense of emotion. Because breastmilk is digested faster, a baby is more likely to interact with their mother, and the skin-to-skin contact creates a special responsive bonding experience. Breastfeeding provides lifelong benefits in adolescents and adults as well. Babies who are exclusively breastfeed for 3 to 6 months often times have a better grasp on their emotions later in life due to these experiences.

Beyond physical and emotional connections, breastfeeding contains key nutrients for better brain development, such as DHA, Cholesterol, and Lactose. DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) is an omega-3 fatty acid that is a fundamental nutrient for growth and maintenance of brain tissue. Babies who are breastfeed have been known to show higher levels of DHA. As strange as it sounds to some, Cholesterol is another crucial element needed for brain development. Fats are needed for ideal brain development because they provide the right substances for producing myelin, the fatty shield that protects nerve fibers so they can safely carry information to different parts of the brain. Sugars are also significant nutrients needed for your baby’s brain development. The sugar, Lactose, is present in breastmilk, and after it enters the body it breaks into simple sugars: glucose and galactose. Galactose is needed for brain tissue development.

Breastmilk has also been linked to cases where children have higher IQ’s than others who are formula feed. Babies who are exclusively breastfeed for 3 months have been known to develop better cognitive aftermaths because larger parts of their brains are developed, such as parts related to language, emotional function, and cognition.

 

While providing lifelong benefits, breastmilk will offer the best vitamins and minerals for an overall healthy brain. Talk to your pediatrician and lactation consultant to learn more about all the benefits breastmilk can offer you and your baby, and checkout this Friday’s post where we will discuss how breastmilk develops strong tummies!

 

 

Embrace Your Child’s Individuality

Embrace Your Child’s IndividualityAs a parent, you have the amazing opportunity to share life lessons with your child constantly.  One of the values that many parents encourage their children to learn is that the things that make each of us different make the world more interesting.  Put another way, if everyone were the same, life would be pretty boring.

Differences will pop up repeatedly in your child’s life but the early stages of teaching this important life lesson is to embrace your child’s individuality.  That means showing them that it’s not just OK to be different, it is wonderful to be different.

Differences come in all shapes and sizes, of course.  Some kids are born with physical differences, which they may not even notice or see as limitations until later in life, but other kids or adults may be quick to point them out.  Some differences are preferences, personality traits or means of expression.  As a parent, when you embrace your child’s individuality, you are helping them build self-esteem, become a confident unique person and you let them know they are loved for exactly who they are.  Here are some ways you can put this into practice every day:

Encourage Your Child and Accept Your Child’s Ways

Children need lots of praise to build their confidence and make them feel loved.  Life can be tough, as your kids will learn soon enough.  Let your time with them be a safe space of happiness and praise, and free from judgment.  When he’s old enough, consult with your child on choices about his own life including what he wants to wear, activities he wants to do, people he wants to play with and books he wants to read.  Allowing children space for choices can help them feel less restricted by the boundaries of life and give them the creative freedom to explore many interests in their own way.  It’s ok to correct misbehavior, but when your child is expressing his individuality, try to embrace it without trying to change it.  This may mean your child will come up with some crazy ideas that challenge your own.  But this variety of life and parenting may be one of the most rewarding as well.

Diversify Your Family’s Experiences

Expose your child to many experiences, even from a young age.  Experts say the more we talk to babies, the better they will be able to develop language skills.  The same concept can be applied to other life lessons.  The more new ideas we introduce into our child’s life, the more he will appreciate many different aspects of the world.  This includes activities such as music, athletics, arts and academics, as well as cultural, sensory and volunteering experiences.

Incorporate your children in your interests.  If you like to cook and your partner likes to play sports, share your passions and let your child be involved in both.  Plus, let your child pick their own interests, even if they defy your family’s talents or social norms.  Also, share your child’s hobbies with their friends, and encourage your children to explore their friend’s interests too.  Even if your son does not want to take ballet, he can attend a friend’s ballet recital to see what it is all about.

Dream Big with Your Child

Starting in toddlerhood, children develop wild and fascinating imaginations.  This is one of the best ways to embrace your child’s individuality because it’s a peek into his creative brain.  Let your child weave stories, do elaborate art projects and design games.  You should participate in them fully.  Showing your child you are part of his biggest wishes and dreams can make the difference between acceptance and defeat.  The bond begins now and he’ll realize you’ll always be his biggest champion.  Some of the world’s most successful ideas came from dreaming big.  Right now it may be about monsters and dragons, but tomorrow those dreams could be an incredible invention or social movement.  Childhood is the time for dreaming so let your child’s imagination run wild – and try to keep up as best as you can.

 

When you embrace your child’s individuality, its yet another way you are nurturing your child to become the best person he can be.  Be sure to read books about characters who are different and talk about how much happier they were for being themselves.  This life lesson will be one your children will carry with them as their lives take shape throughout the years.

Homemade Baby Food: How to Make Baby Food – Advanced Edition

 

Homemade Baby Food:  How to Make Baby Food – Advanced EditionEarlier this week we brought you the basics of how to prepare homemade baby food.  Consider this the advanced course.  One of the major advantages of homemade baby food is that you have the opportunity to expose your baby to a variety of flavors to broaden her food horizons and let her taste buds discover the wonders of food.  Palate training can start as early as in the womb, but when your baby begins eating solid foods, she has the opportunity to explore new and exciting flavors firsthand.

One of the best ways to enrich your child’s dining experience is to mix several foods together at once.  You can mix carrots with green beans, strawberries with bananas or avocado with blueberries.  The possibilities are endless and combining different zests – sweet, savory, tangy, bitter – will help your baby develop an appreciation for food combinations and a variety of flavors.  When your baby begins to eat more at one time, you can even create a mini-meal of purees to ensure she’s getting all food groups in one setting.

It may be wise to keep things simple for your baby at the beginning, but as your baby enjoys more and more homemade baby foods, you can start to spice things up a bit.  Traditional thinking was that baby foods should be bland but now parents are challenging their baby’s taste buds by introducing a variety of herbs and spices very early in their culinary life.  Herbs and spices not only flavor foods, they can also add a range of additional nutrients and open your baby’s palate to the essence of different cultural cuisines.  Talk about creating a worldly baby!

Of course, you never want to give your baby something that is too hot or spicy.  Garlic, basil, ginger, nutmeg, dill, rosemary, oregano, mint, cinnamon, lemon zest, mild curry powder, alcohol-free vanilla and a touch of salt are all appropriate spices for babies.  Obviously think about which herbs and spices will go well with the natural flavor of a food.  For example, cinnamon, vanilla and nutmeg is terrific for cereals and yogurt, while garlic, rosemary and oregano are better for veggies and meats.  Just like the introduction of any other new foods, serve one new herb or spice at a time and wait three days before adding a new one to the menu.

Once you have introduced a spectrum from your spice rack, the sky’s the limit on what you can prepare for your baby.  Minty peas, why not.  Curry potatoes, sounds great!  Vanilla pumpkin, delish!  You can even puree exactly what the rest of your family is having for dinner, such as soups, stews, casseroles, spaghetti – you name it, your baby may like it.  If you find your baby is not enjoying a particular food, don’t dismiss it altogether.  First try adding breast milk to the food to see if that familiar taste will help your baby feel more comfortable with the new flavor.  Otherwise, keep a list of the foods your baby does not like yet and try them again a few months later.  What she didn’t like before may be her new favorite food.

Also, don’t forget that once your baby is older and has more teeth, she can tolerate chunkier food.  Test the waters as you feel she is ready by serving her some soft chunks every now and then.  Once your baby masters chunks, she may be ready for finger foods, which will make life much easier for you.

Expand your baby’s palate with fresh, exciting and taste-titillating homemade baby food!

Tips for Decorating the Nursery

Tips for Decorating the Nursery

Decorating your baby’s nursery can be a very exciting thing to do as parents. From all the things you may want, from cute baby products to toys and what color paints to use, the finished project might be your dream nursery or something way over budget. If this is your first baby, planning the nursery can be a big deal. You want the room to be special and a place that is calm and relaxing for their first few years. If this is your second or third you might be thinking even though you want the room to be special and unique, time will come when it’s time to repaint and replace the decorations again.

Today we are sharing helpful and fun options to help you plan for your nursery:

 

Start Early

You’re going to love yourself a hundred times more if you listen to this advice. Organization is key and getting your ducks in a row before your baby arrives will help you immensely later on. There is nothing wrong with wanting to plan ahead, and when it comes to the nursery, it’s one of the first things you will want done. Soon after you find out about your pregnancy it’s a good idea to start making a list of possible items you will need. For example, a crib, a changing station, a rocking chair, etc. You might get many of your must-haves at your baby shower, but having a list will allow you to cross things off and see what you have left.

The Right Room and Space

Picking the right room is crucial for yourself and your baby. Choose a room close to your bedroom so late night breastfeeding will be easy. Also, picking a room with enough space for a crib and a rocking chair is important too. Make sure to measure the room ahead of time to make sure the crib and other furniture fit so you know what to look for before you buy.

Be Unique and Mix and Match

Have fun! Mix and match and be unique with your baby’s nursery. Load it with family pictures, cute and funny signs and paintings, add some color and some life to this little room. You’ll be spending so much time in this space watching your baby grow from their first few days to their first few years!

Following the Trend

Maybe you’re having trouble coming up with a theme for your baby’s nursery?  Looking at different nursery ideas is a great way to help! Here are a few of the most popular baby nursery designs we absolutely love:

-French Vintage

-Tribal

-Soft and calm earth tones, green being a favorite

-Modern with modern furniture

-Gender Neutral

-Wallpaper is back!

-Gold Metallic

-Artsy with fun pictures and collages

Using an Object to Create a Masterpiece

A lot of parents find objects, such as pillows, lamps, a picture, or a piece of art they absolutely love and feel inspired by. This is a great way to get some inspiration if you are having trouble deciding which colors or design you want to choose for you baby’s nursery. Maybe you have an old family antique or a frame holding a family picture that could be used to gather some creativeness. Designing your nursery around something unique will be something you can really appreciate as you share the precious moments with your newborn in the special room you made for them.

The “Let’s be realistic” Approach

If you plan on having more than one child, or if you do already and you know the ropes on decorating a baby nursery, you understand a room will eventually be changed from a “baby” room and into a “young adult” room. Your once perfect little nursery you spent months planning and then hours of painting and decorating will soon enough be changed again and again as your baby grows into an adolescent and then into a young adult. If you’re taking the realistic approach you’re probably thinking about making the nursery into a multipurpose room where it’s easy to change with your child’s transformations. You can still make a fun and special room for your little one, but the trick is to be smart about it. Instead of painting the walls a crazy pop color try something a little more neutral and safe. You can then grab some fun a colorful accents, such as the crib, pictures, pillows, and other accessories to jazz up the room. Stay away from things like decorative wallpaper and anything else that’s permanent or going to be a pain to remove. However, a great idea, and something your child will love as an adolescent and even as a young adult is chalk wallpaper. They will be able to draw on the walls and decorate it anyway they’d like!

 

The most important lesson to take away from this is to have fun! This is a room your baby will grow up in, and making it special from the beginning will make the experience of being a parent so much fun. Remember to plan ahead and be realistic with your goals. Your baby is going to love you know matter how much their crib cost. There are always fun ways to decorate your nursery whether you’re on a budget or not, but having the something special to bring your baby home to is all that matters!

 

 

How to Truly Help a Friend with a Newborn

How to Truly Help a Friend with a NewbornWhether you have kids or not, being truly helpful to a friend with a newborn is the best gift a new mom could receive.  Even those with kids often don’t think about what it means to be truly helpful because we often get caught up in outdated etiquette that is actually beyond unhelpful to new mothers.  We’re here to show you how to truly help a friend with a newborn.

Help around the house:  When you come over to a new mom’s house while her baby is sleeping, don’t make her sit and talk to you.  That is her time.  Instead, let her take a nap or a shower while you tidy up, fold laundry, run to the grocery store for her or put together the four new baby items that are still in their boxes.  Be useful, don’t eat up her time.

Organize a meal train:  What’s better than bringing your friend’s family a meal?  Getting all of her friends to provide meals for the first month after the baby arrives.  There are online sign-up programs that make organizing meal trains simple and streamlined.  Be sure to ask the mom the types of foods she wants for her family and be mindful of food allergies and dietary restrictions, especially if mom is breastfeeding.

Get her a gift she really wants:  It’s nice to get adorable outfits, burp clothes and blankets, but new moms usually get tons of these generic gifts from people who don’t know her very well.  Ask the new mom what she wants and actually get it for her, even if it is a box of diapers, breast shields for her pump or housecleaning service.

Arrange playdates for older siblings:  Pick up her older kids and let them play with your kids or others outside of their home to allow mom time to bond with her baby or get some chores done.  This is a gift to the whole family.

Listen to her without judging:  Being a new mom can be very hard for even experienced mothers.  Ask your friend how she is doing and actually listen to her without negating her feelings or imparting your personal judgment.  Sometimes just expressing herself will make her feel better.

Sit with her while she breastfeeds:  When mothers exclusively breastfeed, they can get lonely day-in and day-out.  Spend your lunch break sitting with her while she breastfeeds so she has some company that can actually talk back and doesn’t spit up on her.

Take her out:  Make your new mom friend get out of the house when she’s capable so she’ll remember that life is not the bubble she’s been living in with a newborn.  Even if you just take a walk in the park to get fresh air or have a quick girls’ night dinner, remembering what the outside world is like will do her some good.

Tell her all the mistakes you made as a new mom:  New mothers often feel they are the only ones struggling and constantly making mistakes.  Share your blunders with her to help her feel better about her own.  It will probably give both of you a good laugh too.

Give her space:  If your friend says she wants to be left alone, give her that space for the first little while.  She may want to soak up all the time she and her partner have with their newborn before returning to work.  Do be cautious though that your friend isn’t avoiding you because she is depressed.  Intervene if you think she needs help.  Also, if others are constantly bothering her by dropping by to see the baby, be on hand to “manage the door” and let visitors talk your ear off instead of hers.

Be an awesome friend and think about how to truly help a friend with a newborn!

Unique Celeb Baby Names

Unique Celeb Baby Names

Photo by idrewuk via Flickr

Celebrities are notorious for coming up with strangely wonderful names for their children. Although we might not understand them, some have a reasonable and beautiful origin. Here are just 10 of the strangest, yet beautifully amusing, celebrity baby names:

  1. North West: Of course Kim Kardashian and Kanye West make the list after they named their baby North West. While it might be strange to some the name actually comes from both of their hearts. Kim explains the name means the highest power and the highest point of both her and Kanye together.
  2. Blue Ivy: Among the array of power couples, Beyoncé and Jay Z have chosen to follow a less traditional path with their daughter’s name. It’s said the couple has an obsession with the number 4, which in roman numerals it is IV. The name Blue seems to have come from Jay Z’s many albums with the word blue in the titles. Nothing is more beautiful than naming your child after something both parents adore.
  3. Vida: Matthew McConaughey and Camila Alves named their baby girl Vida, which in Portuguese means “life.”
  4. Daisy True: Meg Ryan originally named her adopted daughter Charlotte, but changed it to Daisy True when she came to realize it didn’t fit her personality.
  5. Bingham or “Bing”: Actress Kate Hudson and former fiancé, Matt Bellamy, named their son Bingham because it was Bellamy’s mother’s maiden name, and also the name of Kurt Russell’s father.
  6. Birdi Lee: Actress Busy Phillips is sure to be amused by different names considering her own. She named her daughter after the First Lady, Birdie Leigh.
  7. Ever Gabo: Ever, explains actress Milla Jovovich, is a Scottish name and her husband, Paul Anderson, is Scottish. Gabo comes from a mixture of their middle names.
  8. Fifi Trixiebelle, Peaches Honeyblossom, and Little Pixie: Singer, Bob Geldof, gave his daughters three magical, but fairy-like names. The only explanation for this is Fifi was named after her Aunt Fifi.
  9. Rainbow Aurora: There is no explanation for former Playboy star, Holly Madison’s name for her daughter Rainbow.
  10. Poppy Honey Rosie, Buddy Bear, Daisy Boo Pamela, and Petal Blossom Rainbow: Chef, Jamie Oliver and wife have an unusual way of choosing names. What cute names for toddlers!

 

Homemade Baby Food: How to Make Baby Food – The Basics

Last week we shared the advantages of homemade baby food.  Today we are going to help you get started making your own baby food.  Although you may feel as proud as if you’ve just made a gourmet meal for your kiddo, it’s really not that complicated.

What you’ll need

Besides the bowls, pots and pans you probably have on hand to cook fresh produce for your baby, you will need a few other items for homemade baby food.  Most importantly you’ll need something to grind up the food to make it soft and smooth for your baby to ingest.  Infants, especially brand new eaters, do not have enough teeth to chew food and are not familiar with the reflexes involved in swallowing larger chunks of food.  All beginner baby food should be pureed smoothly to about the texture of a thick soup broth or traditional applesauce.  There are several standard tools that parents use to create the perfect consistency for homemade baby food:

Small Food Processor or Blender – You may already have one of these at home, which is one less expense of making your own baby food.  Or you can purchase one designed especially for making baby food.  Either way, these machines do a great job cutting and crushing your baby food.

Homemade Baby Food:  How to Make Baby Food – The BasicsHand Blender – This gadget allows you to mix up food in whatever bowl it is already in.  You simply stick the electric blades in your bowl and start it up.  It may be more versatile and less cumbersome than traditional blenders.

All-in-One Baby Food Maker – Although more expensive, this modern machine can make homemade baby food even easier by steaming your food and then immediately grinding it up.  It creates less mess and is super efficient for busy parents.

Hand Turned Food Mill – As a non-electric tool, this is the most portable option if you travel often or need to make food away from home.  It has a crank and several blades that offer different textures to your food.  Food mills are a little more work but often fun for older kids who want to participate in making baby food.

Also, some baby foods won’t require a device at all but can be mashed by simply using a fork.  Sweet potatoes, avocado and bananas are examples of foods so easy to mush up, you don’t need anything but a fork.

How to make homemade baby food

It’s as easy as 1-2-3!

Step One:  First, thoroughly wash all fruits and vegetables before cooking them.  Remove pits, seeds and skin as necessary.  Trim the fat from meats.

Step Two:  Then steam, broil, bake or sauté produce, grains or meat until it is soft and tender to the touch.  Try not to add too much water as nutrients will be lost in the water.  (If you do have excess water, save it for the next step.)  Most fruits do not need to be steamed but harder ones like apples, pears and dried fruits should be.  Make sure meats are cooked all the way through.

Step Three:  Once the food is soft, pour it into your preferred food grinding device and blend until it is completely smooth.  You may want to add back some of the excess nutrient-rich water from cooking your foods, or add breast milk for a delightfully familiar taste.

Yum!  Your baby will enjoy your homemade baby food even more because it was made with love!

Food safety reminders

  • Always wash your hands before preparing or handling your baby’s food.
  • Follow your pediatrician’s recommendation of when to start solid foods and which ones to introduce first.  Most professionals suggest starting with wheat or rice cereals and then moving on to vegetables.  That can be followed by fruits, dairy and finally meats.  Introduce one new food at a time and wait three days before trying another one to gage your baby’s reaction.  Food allergies may take several days to present.
  • If you are serving your food immediately after preparing it, check the temperature to make sure it has cooled enough from cooking.  Food should be served at body temperature or lower.
  • When reheating food in the microwave, beware of hot spots as microwaves do not always heat foods evenly.
  • Only serve your baby what you think he will eat at one time.  Extra food should be discarded if the feeding spoon has touched it.  When saliva mixes with food, it can create bacteria that may be harmful to your baby.
  • Once your baby food is made, freeze fresh produce and meats that will not be eaten within 2 days.  Ice cube trays are the ideal size for freezing baby food.
  • Store food in airtight containers.

How to Choose a Baby Name

While choosing your baby’s name might be difficult for some, others may have had their names picked out years before even expecting their first child. There are many things to consider before coming up with the right name for your baby, such as spelling, how the name sounds with your surname, how the name and the middle name sound together, what he initials might spell out, or can you see your child with this name as an adult? Don’t forget originality play a part in picking out a name as well. Our country is notorious for coming up with unique baby names!

Nonetheless, if you’re having trouble choosing a name, or maybe you have one picked but no one seems to like it, today we are going to discuss a few ways on how to come up with the right name for your baby!

 

  1. Discuss Possible Names With Your Partner: A great way to get the ball rolling is to discuss possible names with your partner. Maybe you’ve had a name you’ve loved since you were a child, but your partner doesn’t find it flattering. You’ll never know unless you talk about it! Make a list of your favorites and cross them off one by one until you find the best one you both can agree on.
  2. Use a Relative’s of Friend’s Name: If you or your partner have a close relative or friend who you love dearly, maybe think about naming your child after them. It’s such a heartfelt and warming thing to have someone named after you, or to be named after your mom’s favorite uncle or aunt.
  3. Do You Have a Word You Love?: As strange as this may sound, turning your favorite word or part of a phrase into a baby name has been done before. Many words stand for beautiful messages and now a day it’s not so uncommon to have uncommon baby names.
  4. Do You Want to Tell People the Name Before or After?: This can be a tricky factor. Sometimes you and your partner might have picked out a name you both love, but when you tell your parents they absolutely hate it. Sometimes it’s a good idea to keep your baby’s name to yourself until their birth, but other times it’s good to discuss with your family and friends because they might bring to attention something you might not have thought of.
  5. GO WITH YOUR GUT: Always, always, always go with your gut feeling. If you love a particular name, but everyone seems to think it’s strange, it’s okay not to listen to their ideas all the time. After your baby is born no one is going to care if their name is “Shoe” or “Lemon” because babies bring endless amounts of joy and love! Plus, in the end it is your ultimate decision on what you are going to name your child.

 

Follow up with our future blog, “Unique Celeb Baby Names!”

 

Checking in with our Superstar Spokesmom, Danah Bordner

LPGA Golfer Danah Bordner and Loving Moments SpokesMom!

LPGA Golfer Danah Bordner and Loving Moments SpokesMom!

As a LPGA golfer, mother of two, wife and advocate, Danah Bordner is a busy working mom.  If you ask her, she is the luckiest lady on the planet because she gets to pursue all of her passions and fulfill her dreams.  As busy as life gets, she wasn’t too busy to find time to breastfeed and pump for her two daughters, Taylor (3) and Reagan (1) as she tours the world playing tournaments.  Plus, she finds time to advocate for ovarian cancer awareness, a cause that is close to her heart.

Mothering on Tour

Danah feels fortunate to bring her daughters with her to tournaments about 75% of the time.  Having her girls close, and being able to maintain breastfeeding and pumping, improves her game on the course and as a mom.  Smuckers and the LPGA offer child-care to children of LPGA golfers during tournaments.  The two women who travel with the tour give the program, children and mothers much-needed stability and continuity of care while moms are golfing. Danah is particularly grateful that they supported her family’s breastfeeding goals.

Danah also had inspirational mothers on tour with her who were tremendous role models for her success.  Fellow LPGA golfers Laura Diaz, Leta Lindley and Wendy Ward served as examples of how to make all the pieces fit as mothers and athletes.  And she also learned a few tricks long the way.  One of her best skills became breastfeeding with one arm while responding to emails or doing makeup with the other.  She also prepared her kids well for being independent and in new environments, like being able to walk up and down stairs safely and drinking from a straw early.  Additionally, Danah was conscious of packing light to keep things simple for everyone.  “I packed one suitcase and one small carry on for the week,” she said.  “I always tell myself, if you truly need something or forget it, you can always go buy it!”

Like her family, Danah keeps her inspiration close to home, even when home is on the road.  First, her husband is her coach, which she says works really well for them and saves money.  When she needs inspiration, she finds it within herself, her “happy place,” that helps keep her centered and her goals in perspective.  And if all else fails, tickling her daughters and hearing their laughter supplies her with phenomenal inspiration.

Breastfeeding and Pumping on the Road

Danah breastfed and pumped for both Taylor and Reagan while traveling with the tour.  If you think pumping at your workplace poses a challenge, what if your office was a golf course?  But like any dedicated mom, Danah found a way to make it work.  “I was very lucky to have produced so much,” Danah said.  She purchased a separate freezer for her home to store nearly five months of milk and brought it with her to her temporary headquarters in Florida from December through March.

“My first priority would be to pump immediately after I signed my score card,” Danah said about the logistics of pumping on tour.  “I also timed my practice around my pumping or feeding schedule when I could.”  She cites organization and hydration as her biggest assets for breastfeeding and pumping on the road.  “Whether you are at home or on the road, staying ahead of the game is key.”

Like many other working moms, Danah sometimes had to “pump and dump.”  As “truly heartbreaking” as it was to throw away milk she worked hard to produce and found time to pump, she felt it was worth it to maintain milk production.  “Let’s face it,” she said, “not every industry or workplace is equipped to store breast milk, especially when flying traveling 8-14 hours in one day.”

Of course, breastfeeding while traveling is not without its difficulties and blunders.  Like most new moms, Danah sprayed her daughters with breast milk before feedings on occasion.  And even with as much traveling as she did, she still felt awkward feeding on an airplane.  She learned that window seats were ideal and if she had to make a connection, sitting on opposite sides of the plane would allow her to breastfeed more easily from each breast.  Danah also learned early which foods would cause diaper rash – either through breast milk when she ate them or when the girls moved up to solids – to avoid painful moments while traveling.

As with most new moms, the second breastfeeding experience posed new challenges for Danah as she had to entertain 21-month-old Taylor while nursing baby Reagan.  Danah’s solution: she bought $20 worth of gifts at the dollar store and wrapped them individually.  Whenever she had to feed while Taylor was around, Taylor would get a new toy to keep her occupied.

National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

September is National Ovarian Cancer Awareness month, a cause that has affected Danah in a profound way.  A close friend of hers died of ovarian cancer and ever since, Danah adopted Ovarian Cancer Awareness as her cause.  She works with the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition to spread the word about early detection of this deadly disease.  “Too many women, young and old, have lost their lives due to ignoring symptoms, Danah said.  “September is the month for Teal.”  Much like pink represents Breast Cancer Awareness, Teal is the color of Ovarian Cancer Awareness and Danah’s color for the month of September as well.

Check out Danah on tour during the LPGA season.  She’s the beaming mother of two in the Loving Moments hat.  We hope you join us in cheering her on!