Tag Archive | "hygeia"

Pumping at BlogHer ’11 Part 2: Group Breast Milk Donation to EoF

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Wasting breast milk should be a crime punishable by the Iron Maiden.  Breast Milk is the most amazing liquid on the planet.  It hydrates, it nourishes, it heals, it comforts, it is pure awesomesauce.

So when I decided to leave my son with his father while I attended BlogHer ’11 in San Diego I was immediately hit with the prospect of pumping milk for 4 days.  My first thought would be to bring it home with me because simply dumping it was out of the question!  Then I realized what an ordeal that would be.  Even if I somehow procured Dry Ice to pack it into a cooler for the 8+ hour trip home I would face the TSA.  Would I get an educated agent who understood how to handle breastmilk?  Or an agent who demanded I taste my milk or scan it in an X Ray machine?

Then it hit me: Donate it!  Yes! I would find a mother local to San Diego who had a baby in need of breast milk.  Even if I only had 50 ounces isn’t that something?  Of course it is!  And lightning struck again when I decided to blog about my donation plans to enlist other lactating mothers!  It was brilliant (in my humble opinion.)

For any of you unaware, there are various ways a person can donate breast milk.

One would be donating to a Milk Bank. A Milk Bank would screen the donor through blood tests and the milk is then pasterurized or otherwise turned into other forms of milk for babies.  Even though donors are not getting paid for the milk the banks do charge a (hefty) price for human milk.  A great read regarding Milk Banks and the human milk business is on JWOC {Swindled: The Ugly Side of Milk Donation} I would recommend reading this if you are considering donating to a Milk Bank in order to be informed about what happens to your milk in many cases.

Peer Milk Sharing involves direct person to person donations.  Utilizing online or in person connections women can donate milk to one another for various reasons.  It is really up to the donor and recipient to be honest and up front regarding health concerns or medications being taken. Reasons for peer milk donations range from intolerance to formula, adoptive parents, and help for cancer patients.



BlogHer Milk Recipient. CUTE!

I knew a Peer to Peer Milk Share would be the best in my situation. I was staying at a hotel so I would need to the recipient to pick up the milk.  I chose Eats on Feets and after a quick search, found their Facebook Page for Southern California.  After posting my plans on the page I quickly got an email from a mother who needed the milk.  Her son had been tongue tied and he was clipped but she pumped and was having supply issues.  The baby wasn’t doing well on formula and tolerated breast milk much better.

I responded that I would at least have my own milk but potentially the milk from a few other moms.

Word spread through the internet about my plan. I had comments on my blog post, tweets from other attendees, and emails asking to be involved.  Another mom created a Facebook Group for moms pumping at BlogHer (regardless of donating) and we kept in touch in this way.

At BlogHer I found even more moms!  Purely by coincidence I chatted with a mother at a party who was pumping and boy am I glad I did!  Molly of Milwaukee Mamas.com turned out to be our biggest “producer” and needs an award for her amazing supply!  Her milk was a large percentage of the total we donated!  Other attendees also spread the word in person.

I want to send a HUGE THANK YOU to all of the moms who donated. We had 1 time pumpers who were away from older nurslings and others like myself who had babies under a year old and lots of milk was still flowing!  1 oz or 100 ounces, these women took time to save their milk instead of the easy path of dumping it down the drain.  They have my gratitude!

In no particular order here are the moms I know who donated:

Dagmar of DagmarBleasedale.com

Emily of BabyDickey.com

Kylee of TwoPretzels.com

Molly of MilwaukeeMamas.com

Laura of GreekMomma.com

Jen of LifewithLevi.com

Kristen of CoolMomPicks.com

Jill of BabyRabies.com

Suzanne of Bebehblog.com

Elizabeth of MeasaMommy.com

Christa of LittleBCBG.com

Molly of MilwaukeeMamas.com

Jessica of MomEinstein.com

And One Employee of the Convention Center handed me a bag too (and was asked of any meds/etc first of course)

That is a grand total of 14 (including myself)

All I can say is Wow. I have tears in my eyes just typing out the list of Moms involved.  I am so amazed at the hugeness of this donation, the willingness of so many women to donate, and the overall positive outcome.  Most people don’t even know that breast milk donation is an option, so to have so many involved is truly amazing and such a testament to the caliber of women who attend BlogHer!

Just 1 of 2 Bags

In order to collect every possible drop of breastmilk I was able to wrangle Jill (Baby Rabies) to meet up with our milk recipient on Sunday morning.  I had to leave our hotel at 4:15 am so having anyone meet that early would have been crazy.  Instead, I collected as much milk as possible the night before (and ran back and forth from the North and South Towers of the hotel about 5 times!) then dropped it off to Jill at 12:30 am (after I pumped for the last time) where her fridge was already stocked with milk.  I have a feeling our baby recipient is going to gain a few pounds- let’s just say that Jill and Suzanne both make milk with extra cream!  It resembled yogurt- no lie!  And in case you are curious, we all wrote our names on our own bags of milk.  If Sam shows any sort of negative reaction to the milk hopefully it will be possible to trace to one mother and they can discontinue using those bags.

Jill met with Jen (Life with Levi) in the morning for her milk and the milk we pumped at the party.  They delivered the milk to our mom (I hate that I couldn’t be there myself but getting more milk was more important!) on Sunday morning and it all went smoothly.  I am so relieved!

In total we had 70 bags of milk.  Most had 4 ounces (or more) in each bag.  My guess is we had 350 ounces at least but to be safe let’s say 300 ounces were donated.

300 Ounces.

Suddenly, the inconvenience of pumping was replaced with a warm fuzzy feeling.  Sam, our little donor baby, has been drinking the breastmilk and Mom says his tummy is already acting better compared to the formula.  Luckily they had lots of room in the freezer!

Blissed out and in a Breastmilk Coma.

So next year, New York City, if you are going to be pumping at BlogHer ’12, just let me know!  We’ll be doing the same through Eats on Feets in August 2012.  I may not be breastfeeding by then (who knows) but I will be happy to coordinate another BlogHer Breast Milk Donation.

Anyone can donate breastmilk at any time!  If you have a freezer overflowing with milk, or have an oversupply, or just want to donate, locate an Eats on Feets or Human Milk for Human Babies Chapter in your area!

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Pumping at BlogHer ’11 Part 1: Logistics and Reflections

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I returned home Sunday evening from attending BlogHer ’11, the largest female blogging conference around.  My goal was to learn new things at the numerous sessions that were held by leading bloggers and to network with/ get fan-girly over the many bloggers I follow or converse with.

I was able to do all of those things (and more) but this post has nothing to do with that and everything to do with the thing that hung over my trip like a {leaking} black cloud: My Lactating Boobs.

I chose to leave both of my children, including the nursing one, at home with their dad.  I pumped every day for a month and saved 140 ounces of breastmilk for him (my original goal was 100).  Then I had to leave him.  Unfortunately there is no such thing as a temporary “Shut Off”  valve for boobs.  They are on until the baby is finished.

I have said it before: I despise pumping. There is never a convenient time to pump.  At home it required the attendance of my husband to watch the kids so they didn’t get into trouble or the voo-doo magic of television.  Without kids, pumping is quite a bit easier in many ways but at a hectic and overbooked conference who wants to run to a hotel room and sit stationary while being milked?

I didn’t want to but that is what I did.

The journey began on Thursday.  I left for the airport at 3:30 am for a 5:40 am flight.  I made sure to nurse my son on both sides when he woke up at about 2:40 am.  I packed my Hygeia Enjoye in a purse along with clear plastic bags for parts, bags for milk, and the bottles and flanges in another bag.

Luckily the Hygeia Enjoye, when charged, can be used without being plugged in!

My first flight was only 45 minutes and by the time it was over I was so ready to pump!  The problem was that I only had half an hour between flights.  My next flight was in another terminal and required being shuttled over.  I rushed to the gate and it had just started boarding.  I had an important decision to make: Skip pumping and risk exploding all over the plane and/or trying to either hand express or pump in an airplane bathroom, or, pump in a small window of 20 minutes and risk missing my flight!

I made a rash decision and bumped my way to the gate attendants.

“Hi….. umm…..  I am on this flight.”


So I need to pump.” I whispered to both attendants but made eye contact with the female.

“Ma’am I can’t hear you, speak louder.” Of course.


The male gate attendant was the one who spoke up.

“Alright.  You better do it now.  I’m not kidding.  I’ll hold the flight for you but you HAVE to do it RIGHT NOW.  Go.”

“Thank you Thank You THANK YOU!” I said and ran away after he got my name and seat number.

A quick glance of the airport let me know that it was too busy to attempt pumping in a secluded corner so I went to the bathroom.  I have only nursed in a bathroom once in my life but pumping is not as discreet.

I packed myself, a rolling suitcase, and a giant purse into the stall and set about trying to screw in bottles, insert tubing, put on my Hands Free Nursing Bra from Pumpease, and keep the pump balanced on my suitcase.  I turned the dial to ON and relied on the quiet pump coupled with the busting bathroom to disguise what was going on.

That experience turned me into a permanent believer in, and cheerleader of, the Pumpease.  I actually stood there and was pumped while Tweeting and taking photos of myself since I wanted to share the hilarity.

Right as I began squeezing Lefty to get the rest out since he is a bad pumper I heard the intercom announce that everyone on flight blah blah needed to be on board bound for San Diego.  Shit.

I put my parts back in the bags, threw myself back together, washed my hands and ran!  The male attendant and I smiled at one another and the next leg of travel began.

I strongly considered trying to pump on the plane since my seatmate was snoozing and I had a pleasant position in the bulkhead but I held off until landing.

Once on the ground I booked it to the nearest bathroom to relieve myself.  This time I saved my milk since freshly expressed breastmilk can stay out before being refrigerated/frozen for 4 hours.

The rest of the weekend and conference I had the luxury of pumping in my hotel room.  I even took my pump to another attendee’s room (Jenn of Life With Levi) who held a Pumping Party in her room.  many of the participants also donated their breast milk along with me (more on this tomorrow, but read more about my initial plans here).  I will admit to missing out on quite a few things due to the pumping.  I don’t regret it but it is part of the package.

Admittedly, I was a bad pumper.  On my busiest days I only pumped 4 times when I should have gotten to it at least 5 times.  The first full day and night in San Diego I woke at 5 am totally engorged since my son nurses at night.  I hand expressed in the bathroom enough to let me go back to sleep until a more reasonable hour to pump!

The biggest lessons I learned from being an EP (Exclusively Pumping) Mom for 4 days:

  • Breastfeeding is Way Easier.
  • Pumping takes more Prep Time and Clean-up time.
  • Working Moms who Pump have a ton of logistical challenges, especially when faced with nowhere to pump.
  • Traveling and Flying Moms who pump have it even harder.  There is no telling where your layover will be and what facilities you will have to pump in.
  • To avoid washing parts all of the time store them in a freezer bag in your fridge between sessions (reader tip)
  • Hand compressing your breast while pumping is helpful if you have a stubborn boob that doesn’t want to drain.
  • A great Double Electric Pump is needed and a battery powered one is worth every penny.
  • A hands free nursing bra will save your life.
  • Keep a dribble cloth handy.

Pumping is HARD work when you consider the alternative of either breastfeeding a baby directly, or bottle feeding a baby formula.  In the earliest days of my first son’s life a pediatrician told me that it was OK to give up, some babies just don’t ever latch properly.  I could do as his wife did and just pump and bottle feed.  (Yes, a Pediatrician actually told me this!)

I thought hard about his statement.  My baby would still be geting breastmilk afterall, and I could skip the torturous nursing sessions that were leaving me shaking and crying from the pain.  Instead, I decided I would work with the Lactation Consultant and use a Nipple Shield until we had this thing figured out.

Even though I was about to breastfeed successfully there are certainly warranted cases of mothers who need to pump full time, and those who pump while working or away.  I already knew how admirable that was (seriously, pumpin’ mamas get my respect) but after experiencing EP first hand for 4 days I admire them even more!  Pumping gives the baby the benefit of breastmilk but requires so much more work.  It also made me understand a little more why some mothers end up switching to formula after they return to work.  I am so lucky to get to stay home with my boys and that makes breastfeeding so easy.  I honestly don’t know what would happen if I had to work for it.

Tomorrow’s Post will be about the 300+ Ounces of Breastmilk collected from over 10 moms at BlogHer to be donated.  Rock on.

Even though I’m being sponsored by these companies in some way I am telling the truth when I say that I love them!  Thanks again to Swaddlebees and Boba for their generous sponsorship that got me to BlogHer and to the other companies that made my boobies weigh lesslook perkier, and be more productive!

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My Boobs are Excited for BlogHer ’11!

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Last year I wasn’t able to make Blogher ’10 in NYC (4 hours from my home) for a few reasons.  I waited too long to purchase my tickets and the event sold out, and it also fell just a few short weeks away from my EDD for my second son Ev.  I had a major case of the Green Eyed Monster when logging into Twitter as my virtual BFF’s got to hang out, learn new ways to improve their blog, and party together.

This year I made it a point to buy my tickets early, find sponsors, and plan.  I found two very fitting sponsors in Swaddlebees, a cloth diaper company committed to keeping their product lines manufactured in the US. They offer every type of diaper imaginable in their line including my favorite- Swaddlebees Simplex.  The Simplex even made my list of “trimmest” cloth diapers!  My other sponsor is Boba.  Boba makes a baby carrier specially designed for babies over one year that gives them extra room in the seat, a higher back (which makes for safer babywearing and more peace of mind for me) and even optional foot rests for longer legs to keep them comfortable and in the proper seated position.  I just discovered this week that Everett fits well into the Boba so I am excited to start using it again!  I’ve even been able to nurse him in it- a video of that is coming soon!  Boba is part of the NAP family, who are also the makers of the Sleepy Wrap.  I am “self sponsoring” the cost of my ticket and the various other charges involved in the trip (which ain’t cheap), but my flight and hotel costs were generously covered by sponsors.

My boobs are also seeing quite the BlogHer sponsorship. Yes, you heard right- Boobs.  I had a mini freak out when I realized I only owned a single electric pump but I would be far from my nursling for 4 whole days- 96 hours to be exact.  A single works fine for my at home pumping needs but I knew I needed to stock up in a big way for BlogHer plus I would be pumping to keep a supply and relieve engorgement during my stay in San Diego.  A single would take DOUBLE the time during my breaks to pump since my boobs would have to take turns.  Now that I understand more about the WHO Code thanks to Amy from Just West of Crunchy I didn’t want to get another Medela or other WHO Code violator made pumps.  I contacted Hygeia, the makers of WHO Code compliant pumps that are also Closed Valve System pumps (meaning they are approved for multiple users since no milk will make its way into the pump itself and potentially cause mold or contamination) and asked if they would consider being my “Pump Sponsor.”  It was an exciting day when they said yes and a huge weight off my shoulders (and my bra).  Already I am loving the pump for the quiet suction noise it makes and the fact that it has a rechargeable Ion battery.  I can pack and pump all over the conference if I need to and never have to situate myself next to an outlet!

Not only is Hygeia Sponsoring my Pump, they are also going to very generously be providing myself and other Lactacting Mama’s at BlogHer with Freezer Storage Bags to use.   In case you missed my post on Donating Milk While at BlogHer- I’ll not only be donating my own milk from 4 days of pumping, but I’ve recruited other mothers hoping to do the same!  We will be descending upon Jenn  from Life With Levi’s hotel room since she is throwing a “Pumping Party.”

And even though I wrote this post 3 days ago- Just so happens that the Hygeia Enjoye is on Zulily today for 100$ off. Sign up for Zulily using my referral link and get an amazing deal on an amazing double pump!

And since I will be a true “pumper” while at BlogHer I knew I needed a Pumpease Hands Free Nursing Bra.  I would miss out on tweeting while holding two horns to my breasts for 15 minutes but with the Pumpease I’ll be able to remain hands free while I get milked.  That is a HUGE deal.  My friend Ginni reviewed the Pumpease for my blog and she said it saved her back and made pumping a whole new and more enjoyable experience for her.  Thank goodness Wendy has sent one for me to use.  I’m stalking my mailbox for it.

But wait- there’s more!  While trying on clothing for my trip I realized my bras were looking sad and letting my boobs down.  I jokingly tweeted that there should be a bra company at BlogHer offering Bra Fittings (hey, Lees is offering Jeans Fittings, why not?)  Alison from Nummies Bras offered to send a few bras for me to try on (just because) and in days I had Christmas in July for my boobies.  A gorgeous package of beautiful and stylish nursing bras was in my possesion.  There was even a Pink Bra.  I cannot tell you the last time I purchased a “fun” bra.  Mine have all had to be tan/ white/ or black.  Not even black actually.  Just tan or white.  I have become quite busty since having children.  I’m 5’3″ and less than a buck but my boobs are DD’s.  I’ve tried them on and the DD/E size is fitting best but the 32 bands fit my back the best.  I just happen to wear a hard to find size since I’m 32 and DD so many times I have to size up to a 34 band and this was the case with Nummies.  I can’t fault brands for not making that size, especially smaller manufacturers.  PS- Alison hasn’t asked for anything in return but it just so happens that I love the bras that fit me and they are so cute!  She was just trying to help me out with my booby crisis!  She is one of my favorite people on Twitter so if you are looking for an interesting woman to follow who puts a smile on your face she is the one!  @NummiesBras

My boobs are totally spoiled for BlogHer!

But what am I looking forward to the most about BlogHer (besides the informative sessions and parties with my buddies)?  Seeing Ricki Lake speak and possible even meeting her!  Ricki Lake has really pushed Homebirth into the mainstream (her movie gave me confidence to try my own homebirth) and made it a really viable option for parents who may not have even heard of it before!  That is an admirable and impressive accomplishment.  She is also coming back to daytime soon!

I’m not excited about leaving my famiy but I am ready to meet lots of new (and old) friends, take tons of notes, and maybe even have a little fun!

Even though I’m being sponsored by these companies in some way I am telling the truth when I say that I love them!  Thanks again to Swaddlebees and Boba for their generous sponsorship that is getting me to BlogHer and to the other companies making my boobies weigh less, look perkier, and be more productive!

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100 ounces or Bust! Breastmilk Goal for BlogHer!

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The secret is out: I am a MEGA Procrastinator. I had 0 ounces of milk stored in my freezer as of Friday, June 24 after my sitter used my last 5 ounces to feed my son while Hubby and I went out for a date.  (gasp!)

To give you an idea of how much of a procrastinator I am, in college I used to skip school (a lot.)  My freshman year I was enrolled in a 9 am (way too early for me then) Psych class.  I rarely made it.  The day before the exam I realized I knew nothing about psychology and had no notes.  I took my text book to the library and read THE ENTIRE 900 page text book in one session. Coincidentally I made an A on that exam.

I’ve been avoiding pumping because it is one of my least favorite activities (much like Psych Class!).  Since my son latches well and I rarely leave him there has never been a need for a stash of milk in my freezer.  I have a sitter who comes every Friday and I leave the house for 4 hours and work from Starbusk or another location.  If I haven’t pumped any milk I stay home and work.  If we know we are going out I pump a bit.  I have never had more than 15-20 ounces of milk in my freezer at a time, and usually I have closer to 0-10.

I guess I am lucky that I don’t have to pump and I get to stay home and nurse my baby when he needs it.

Let me explain WHY I avoid pumping and maybe you’ll know what a big deal it is when people say they have a 100+ ounce stash of breastmilk.

First, I have to make sure pumping is going to be worth it. There is nothing more depressing than geting everything aligned to pump and coming up with less than one ounce.  So far I have acheived this by either pumping in the morning (on the breast that I nurse from the least) or “block feeding” (feeding on one side more than once in a row, then pumping on the other side after storing up milk for a bit).

Next, my Flange (the part than goes on your breast) has to be clean.  If I were a better woman I would wash it as soon as it has been used and put it back on my pumping table.  Alas, I am not.  Often times I find an opportune moment to pump only to realize my Flange is buried under some glasses in my sink and needs to be washed.  That often makes me say “nevermind.”

Clean Flange- Check.  Boob(s) full- check.  Kids asleep/husband home to watch kids/ or kids entertained for 10 minutes?  eh………….?!?

Damn kids. They are always crashing my pumping parties.  If the stars have aligned and I am READY to pump, usually the kids aren’t in agreeance (thank you Fred Durst of Limp Bizkit fame).  I keep my Hygeia Enjoye in my room for the serious pumping sessions and my old Medela Swing Single can roam to wherever I need it.  Currently it is on my couch.  The Hygeia is going to be a Godsend at BlogHer when a double pump is a must, and it is ridiculously quiet.

So what’s a girl (with engorged) boobs to do?

It depends on  the day and the mood of the kids.  Often I let the toddler amuse himself in whatever activity will hold his attention for at least 10 minutes.  The baby is trickier.  I prefer to have my husband watch both kids but if he isn’t around I put the baby on the bed with me and play with him or leave him on the floor of my room so I can keep an eye on him while he plays.  It is about to get more interesting since he started crawling this week.


What was that?!

Occasionally a loud bang or crash will cause me to hastily disconnect from the pump (and squirt milk in all directions).  This blows.  My biggest fear is that I will have a few ounces in my bag or bottle and will have to rush to attend to the scary noise or screaming child and the milk will spill.

Take this morning (please! badum ching). I was pumping and the kids were on the floor in front of me.  Toddler whacked the baby with a plastic hanger.  Baby screams.  Then toddler tried to help by hugging him, which knocked him to the ground.  Cue more crying.  I disconnected and ran over while my left breast was still squirting milk.  Jealous yet?

See what an ordeal pumping can be?!  Pumping at work or while kids are away must be easier than while kids ARE around.  I definitely respect the pumping mamas out there.

I have to pump every single day between now and when I leave for BlogHer on August 4.  I have exactly 30 ounces stashed away since I started pumping daily on the 24th.  The past 2 days I have added a second afternoon session and I hope to continue this in case something prevents a daily session from happening.

If I only pump once a day and get an average of 3.25 ounces it will take another 22 days to get to 100.  Of course, I would love more than 100 ounces just in case but I HAVE to hit that goal.  I will be gone for 4 whole days including travel.  If my son drinks 1 ounce an hour that is 96 hours away from him!  I will definitely aim to have more than 100 but that is certainly the smallest I could leave. (I don’t want to consider supplementing at this point but I realize it is a possibility.  I would rather my husband give him formula in the event that my milk runs out early than him starve.)

Now maybe you can see why the women who lose 100 ounces to a delivery mishap, a TSA Agent, or a husband who left the freezer door open (yikes…) would potentially go postal.  I know the hell I would.

I WILL reach my goal because that is the kinda person I am.  I thrive under pressure.  I haven’t missed a day and in just 6 days I have 30 ounces now.  BlogHer and 100 ounces or Bust!

See also- Pumping at BlogHer?  Consider Donating Breastmilk!

A HUGE thanks to my BlogHer Sponsors. Swaddlebees (makers of the fabulous and trim Simplex cloth diaper), Boba (makers of my favorite SSC for toddlers that is so comfy) and Hygeia (who sent a pump for me to use in getting milk ready for BlogHer and to pump while I’m gone)

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Pumping at BlogHer ’11? Consider Donating Breastmilk!

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One of the hardest things about planning to go to my first blogging conference- BlogHer ’11 in San Diego this August- was deciding to leave my nursling at home with his father. My son will be 10 months old when I go.  Many people think 10 months is almost time to wean but not me.  I’ll be nursing my son until he is ready to wean, whenever that is.

Other than physically leaving my two boys and husband, the next cause for concern came when I realized I needed to pump enough milk to last for the 4 days I would be gone. Yikes!  That is a tall order, especially since I only have a single pump.  And pumping while gone with a single?  That would be a nightmare!  It would take twice the time to relieve my breasts.  Instead, I’ll be pumping with a Hygeia Double Electric. {Full Disclosure- they are sending the pump free of charge as my Pump Sponsor for BlogHer}

And what about while I’m away? Traveling with breast milk is something I am very afraid of.

I’ve read the stories of women who have had to fight with the TSA about their breast milk and in many cases they either missed their flight or had their milk X-Rayed.

Like this one.

Or this one.

Or this one.

All because of breast milk.  You know, that amazing fluid designed for babies that meets all of their nutritional needs and is formulated to suit them at every age and stage? Yeah.  It just so happens to be dispensed through a nipple on those jiggly things men like to look at called Boobs.

Even though theoretically the law and TSA regulations are on my side I just don’t want to chance it.

That is why I have decided to donate the milk that I pump while in San Diego to a local family through a peer milk sharing program (Most likely Eats on Feets Southern CA).  I will have 3 full days worth of breast milk which will translate to about 80-110 ounces.  I’ve never exclusively pumped but I am just guessing based off of what I get from each breast when I do a single pump, and have multiplied that by how many times I will likely pump while away each day.    I realize this isn’t a ton but I know it can be of help to someone. I would much rather donate it than risk losing it or contaminating it at the airport. Plus the logistics of a full day of flying with a cooler of breastmilk makes my head hurt.

If you are pumping at BlogHer and want to skip the hassle of traveling home with milk, don’t let it go to waste! We can all donate our milk together to one family or you can find a family to donate to individually. I will create a group either on BlogHer or on Facebook if there is enough interest, just let me know in the comments.

I do not have a recipient lined up yet for my milk in San Diego.  In case others wish to donate with me we could potentially donate all of our milk to one family.  As a reminder, peer to peer milksharing (more on this) is something both parties will willing go into fully aware of the risks involved. There will be no money exchanged and the milk will not be screened.  It is up to me to be forthcoming about what could be in my milk (dairy or other ingested foods that could cause an allergic reaction in some babies, or even alcohol) and the recipient to understand those things.  If I do drink while away chances are I will dump the milk I pump after since I am donating it.  I do feel comfortable breastfeeding my own baby after one or two drinks but others may not.

I am absolutely terrified of coming home to a baby who no longer want to breastfeed but multiple people have reassured me that he will go right back to the breast when I get home.  At least I know that my milk won’t go to waste while I’m away.

Are you a Lactacting Lady going to BlogHer ’11?  Would you consider breast milk donation?  If so leave a comment!  If enough people are interested I’ll create a group to help plan this potential multi-donor transaction with a local San Diego family.

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Hygeia EnJoye Dual Electric Breastpump Review

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This review was written and performed by Kristen, DDL Contributor.

Picture 16

I was given the opportunity to review the Hygeia EnJoye personal breast pump.  I had never heard of the brand before, and had previously used Medela products or manual pumps.  I was excited to try it and was certainly not disappointed.

Anyone who breastfeeds or pumps knows that looking at, listening or thinking of your baby helps with let down.  Hygeia took this knowledge and applied it to their breast pumps by creating a CARE (Custom Audio Record Button) button, allowing you to record your baby crying an play it back, which among other neat features, is pretty brilliant in my opinion.

I was pretty intrigued with the opportunity to review this breast pump for many reasons.  One big reason is that this company designed their breast pumps to be “green”.  All parts that come in contact with breastmilk are BPA and DEHP-free and are one of the few pumps that are FDA approved to be safe for multi-users.  This means that you can re-sell or recycle the pump (send it back to Hygeia…address located on back of pump).  Many people do buy used pumps and I was one of those people…and I even used the pumps, until I learned that they aren’t really meant to be multi-user pumps.  So the Hygeia already was on my good side, because if you aren’t supposed to re-sell or re-use other pumps, where do they go??  Landfills??  That’s a lot of wasted pumps, so the idea that you can share this pump hygienically is pretty awesome (as long as you have your own Personal Accessory Set).

Why Hygeia Breast Pumps? It’s Simple…

  • Risk – Free, 21 day return/exchange policy – Our Total compatibility Guarantee
  • Clearance as Multi-user breast pump. Safe to share using a new Personal Accessory Kit
  • Green Company, with recyclable breastpumps to protect the environment
  • 3 year limited warranty, the best in the industry
  • Unique C.A.R.E. button lets mom record/play baby’s cry or other sound, proven to help with letdown
  • BPA/DEHP Free – all pump/kit parts that come in contact with breastmilk are safe for baby
  • WHO Code Compliant supporting mothers and babies throughout the world.

EnJoye Front 2_350x0

So…all that wonderful stuff aside, how did the pump perform?  Well, I was able to try out the Hygeia EnJoye Dual Electric Professional Grade Breast Pump.  It was very small and came with a discreet drawstring bag to keep the pump and all supplies in.  It’s pretty simple and modern looking and was very easy to use.  There are two knobs, one to adjust the speed and another to adjust the strength of pumping.  This allows you to be able to mimic the different sucking patterns of your baby, which allows for optimum milk collection.  There is also the record and play buttons, where you can record your baby crying in order to help stimulate let down.  They do have a pre-programmed baby crying in there, which my 1.5 year old discovered by pressing the button and it scared the crap out of her!  Haha.  She was okay with it though once I recorded her sister crying instead.

When I was using the pump, I was pretty pleased with the overall feel of the pump.  I was able to easily adjust the speed and strength, and even at the highest settings, didn’t feel like my nipples were about to be ripped off, which has happened with previous pumps I have used.  The pump itself with really quiet and had a pretty consistent sound to it, which helped to make it more discreet.  One of the best features for moms who pump at work is that this pump has an internal battery.  This pump would have been my savior when I had my first daughter because I had nowhere to pump at work that was near an outlet.  If I had this pump then, I would have been able to pump in a bathroom stall (not ideal but hey, it would have been private and would have yielded the end result of pumped milk for my baby).  This is also great if you want or need to pump in your car (maybe even while driving if you are using a hands free pumping bra??), or if you go camping or even if your electricity goes out and for some reason you need to pump.  There are probably a million situations that I could think of where an internal battery would come in handy.

So anyway, with the aid of my recorded crying baby and the easily adjustable settings, I was able to get a lot of milk, and fast.  I have mentioned in other pump reviews that I have been able to use many different pumps and I can easily say that this pump is the best electric pump I have ever used.  I honestly don’t even know if I can think of any suggestions to make the pump better.  I guess maybe the bag it comes in could be cuter?  But seriously, I would recommend this pump to anyone who plans to pump, whether it be sporadically or regularly, over any other brand of pump out there.  Overall, I can’t think of any better pump to use, both because of it’s “green” rating and also because it just works so darn well.

Kristen was sent a Hygeia Pump to review, free of charge.  All opinions expressed are the writer’s and were not influenced by the company.

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