Breastfeeding – My Journey & Experiences

Breastfeeding – My Experiences

Today I am choosing to share my own Breastfeeding Journey and my own tips. Some I have established myself and others have been passed on to me by other mothers and also health care professionals.

Everyone has different experiences and I feel I’m lucky to still be feeding my son, there were many hurdles but we overcame them in the end. If you would like to learn more about my journey then please keep reading.

This piece is known as one of my honest posts because this is what happened to me in my life and how I dealt with it all. Thank you for supporting me by reading this article today.

 

My Breastfeeding Journey
 
I’ve just reached the 9 month mark of breast feeding, and while it’s a huge accomplishment and I’m very proud to be still doing it, it makes me sad that not more mothers are encouraged to do it from the beginning.

I understand that it’s not for everyone, depending upon your maternity leave and personal situation. Some babies just don’t get the latch, or are tongue tied, there are a ton of reasons why it won’t work. Yet certain hospitals in the UK seem to have staff that are more supportive than others.

I was one of the lucky ones who spoke to a breast feeding coordinator within 24 hours of my son being born. Despite the fact we had to stay in hospital for 2 weeks due to him being jaundice, I still soldiered on like a mummy warrior because it was what I wanted to achieve. I breast fed my son every 60 to 90 minutes, and pumped in between every 2 feeds. He was then breast fed and given a top up of expressed with a cup after every feed. Exhausting isn’t the half of it.

We were supported and my own perseverance served us in good stead for continuing with this schedule. I contracted Ductal Thrush during the 7th week of breast feeding and it reoccurred meaning I was on antibiotics for 6 whole weeks. Applying cream, then removing the creams before feeds, rubbing gel on my sons gums, I had lanolin for my bleeding nipples which were struggling also. It was a nightmare time and yet I still got through it.

Ductal Thrush was more painful for me than giving birth. I’m not exaggerating. Any mum that has had it will back me up. The only way I can describe it is like this… When baby latches on the first 30 seconds feel like he’s pulling your milk and nipple through shards of broken glass. Then it’s like a burning sensation that radiates down from the nipple into the deep tissue of the breast. As milk is drawn up and through by baby, the pain moves down the ducts and can be felt right down. For me it was all the way into my arm pit and into my back. The pain was present for the first 4 or 5 minutes of every feed. It was so bad at times that I cried out in pain if my baby let go during those first 30 seconds to a minute, and had to latch again and start the process over again. The one evening tears were rolling down my cheeks as I bit down on something to stop myself waking up the neighbours. My husband sat next to me looking terrified asking what he could do to help… the answer was nothing. I had had the tablets prescribed by this point but they took a few days to do anything.

I was asked if I wanted to stop feeding when my Ductal Thrush came back for vengeance. But I knew we could beat it and come out stronger the other side. It was a really difficult time, we had to ask people to stop visiting us because I was embarrassed by the amount of pain I was in. But because I have Stage 4 Endometriosis it was more beneficial to me to keep feeding my son. It was overall better off for both of us if we could continue. And we did it! I’m also proud of my pain threshold, I read about some mum’s having to give up after their infections. But I was not only determined for my son but for myself,  breastfeeding creates hormones that keep my cycles at bay, which means no Endometriosis pains, for now.

A lot of mothers are misdiagnosed where Ductal Thrush is concerned, so please speak to your local breastfeeding team before going to your GP if you’re concerned. They will be able to help with your symptoms are let you know what the GP needs to do to confirm it. My GP thought I had Mastitis but in fact it was Thrush. You must be aware of both of these as a Breastfeeding Mother, yet some people don’t know what to look for. To clarify Mastitis is when your Ducts get blocked with milk from engorgement and your baby not feeding effectively. Make sure that if you get any redness with heat, any pain and swelling of the breast that doesn’t subside after a feed and a let down, you should see your GP urgently.

Another hurdle that I had was to have a baby who cluster fed, some days he would have 16 feeds in 24 hours. The most he had was 18 feeds a day when he was having growth spurts. The feeds were anything from 15 minutes to 50 minutes and all times in between. It was an exhausting time, but the bond that we created was worth every moment of the no sleep and the bleeding body parts. Thank goodness for my Pregnancy Pillow!

By the time I got to 5 months I was infection free, we were down to 14 feeds in 24 hours and we were almost ready to begin some basic Weaning of vegetable purées. But my son had issues with his bowel and with his skin, eczema had flared up all over his body since he had his vaccinations. So our GP sent us to a pediatrician for advice.

They asked me if I wanted to continue feeding, if I did I would need to give up dairy products entirely, to consume nothing which contained dairy, that meant nothing with milk, lactose or whey powder in. That would’ve been easier if the alternatives weren’t all nut related. My husband has severe nut allergies and therefore products of this nature don’t even enter our house. I knew it was going to be a struggle to negotiate this new challenge before me and I remember shedding a few tears of frustration… after everything we now had this to deal with as well.
 
Finding a balance between getting my breastfeeding calories a day but still cutting out everything on the doctors list was hard. A few things were easy to change to, Soya Milk instead of regular Milk and Vegan Flora Spread instead of Buttery Milk Spread… but other things were much harder because you didn’t even realise that they contained milk. Usually it’s the lactose used to bind ingredients together…

In the end I gave up over half of my usual food items and I managed to swap into a third of alternatives. The rest is just given up on for the foreseeable. I would do anything to stop my son scratching his skin and/or experiencing his crippling wind pains. But it’s so hard when they’re little and they cannot tell you what’s wrong or how to fix it.
 
Our son has had a variety of creams and liquids for the bath, we are slowly getting on top of his skin conditions. The dairy issue is an ongoing battle, though we are Weaning and so far we haven’t had any other issues, we are avoiding a small list of some foods entirely. Dairy is something I eat one item of every 3 to 4 weeks and see if baby reacts to it a couple of days later,
that is because it takes time for the dairy proteins to pass into my milk supply and then into baby and their digestive system. So far we found him have a very unsettled sleep within 3 days of me having anything dairy. It meant he had wind and sometimes nasty nappies along with it. It was awful to see him react this way, though the doctor has advised we try dairy once a month to see how his digestive system copes, especially as he is getting older now.
 
I’m hoping that he grows out of this sensitivity and it doesn’t become an intolerance, some babies do! I am keeping so much crossed for this! In the meantime we are just taking things one day at a time. I’m so proud of him, he’s such a happy and intelligent baby, I am one proud mummy bear over here! The Breastfeeding comes to us so naturally now, and I even breastfeed in public without getting embarrassed or feeling insecure about it. At the end of the day I am feeding my child and his needs come first.
Here I am Breastfeeding my son while out recently.

I have a few tips for women hoping to Breastfeed, these are my personal tips and obviously won’t work for everyone. Some are factual though and you should be reminded of them by your midwife or heath visitor…

Sabrina’s Top Tips for Women New to Breastfeeding

1. Drink a ton of water! I’m not exaggerating when I say that feeding makes you really thirsty! I had to carry a 1 litre bottle with me everywhere I went, and I had a pint glass by the side of my feeding chair. A bottle by the side of my bed and also a cup in the bathroom for drinking at night. You will still pee quite a lot after the birth (natural or c-section) while your bladder recovers, and so despite needing to wee you’ll find yourself very thirsty at the same time. On average they recommend 3 litres of water a day. Limit yourself to one cup of coffee, two of tea or one can of pop. Water is what makes milk ladies! Drink up! Add a little squash if you’re not fond of water but get it down you.

2. The second tip I have is be comfortable! Your baby will be small when they’re born, but they won’t stay that way for long. I invested in a pillow, and it was one of the best things I ever bought. On offer from Online4Baby I paid around £12 for it. It’s a half circle shape and allows baby to lay across it while the pillow goes around your middle. I will pop an image below! In the end I bought two and kept one on my bed and the other in the lounge. Cushions for your neck and elbows are also essential when you have a baby who likes a longer feed.

4 in 1 Pillow for Nursing and Baby

3. Look after yourself! Keep showered and in clean clothes, changing them every 24 to 36 hours at least. You won’t have much time on your hands, but try and make your partner see that being clean is important so as to minimise risk of infections. You will feel so much more human too! Having a little human attached to you is daunting!

4. Eat Well! This might sound silly but you need plenty of protein related foods and also vegetables and fruit as a new mum. Calcium is important too! Unless like me you have a baby who has issues! If not then get yourself some milk and cheese. I ate cereal every morning that had extra iron and vitamins. It’s a good idea!

5. Fresh Air! Fresh air should help you be a bit more relaxed and also help baby sleep. Be careful if it’s cold and wrap yourself and baby up warmly. Remember to shelter baby from any sun rays as well if they’re a newborn. But getting out even for ten minutes for some fresh air is a good plan.

6. It took me a while to be comfortable breast feeding in public. I put that down to my sons problems and then my infections. Once those were all rectified we had no problem getting comfortable on a cafe sofa, usually rolling up my coat to go beneath him and help my arm take the strain. My biggest tip is to just consider it as your baby is having a meal. You wouldn’t deny yourself lunch if you were out for the day would you? Just because you’re not at home doesn’t mean you cannot do as you would do when at home. Baby will tell you when they’re hungry enough for you to not ignore that cry any longer… whip out a boob and stick that hungry baby on it, because they’re the most important thing.

7. Don’t be surprised if you get lopsided and baby prefers one boob over the other! I didn’t think I would ever get this lopsided but my son prefers my one boob over the other. Who am I to argue?! Despite trying to get him to feed off the other one for months, he only usually does so when he is half asleep and cannot tell the difference.

8. Pumping or Combination Feeding is not as easy as you’d think and it isn’t for everyone. I had to stop pumping after I got my Ductal Thrush infections. After those 7 weeks had gone by my breasts didn’t produce as much milk on a pump as they did when I was physically feeding my son. We had hoped to combination feed so my husband could help, but our son was reluctant to take to many bottle types and then I simply couldn’t pump enough anyway. Just because you pump doesn’t mean that’s all there is, some mum’s require babies own latch to produce milk, others find they have a bigger supply and can feed and pump large amounts easily. Remember what I said above about Water – it’s what makes the milk so you need to increase your intake of it so as to increase milk for baby. At a certain point your boobs will be less hard and your baby will stimulate the making of the milk rather than your body just constantly producing it…

9. My final breast feeding tip is to go with the flow. Not the milk flow as such but the flow of you and baby. Feed when baby wants it, those first few weeks will be a mess of body fluids and bits hanging out. But you’re learning and your baby is also learning as well. After a month or two it will feel so natural to you, and hopefully you will choose to continue feeding for as long as is appropriate for you and your baby. I’m hoping to get to the year mark and maybe even go for longer, it all depends if baby has an allergy or not… until then we will just be feed feed feeding!

The hours are long but the cuddles make it all worth it…

✩✩✩


Thank you for reading this post today, I know it has been an honest one, and I hope it helps someone out there. Breast feeding is one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever decided to do in my life, and I wouldn’t change my experience despite the ups and downs. The bond I have with my son is incredible and it’s the look on his face when he knows we are going to settle down for a feed that makes it so worth it. The look he gives me sometimes part way through feeding, locking eyes with me and smiling, sometimes he smiles so much he either lets go of his latch or spills milk all down himself, it’s so cute and it’s a look of love and thanks. It’s amazing…

If anyone has any questions about breast feeding I’m happy to try and answer them. There are also pages on Facebook, local groups you can contact and your GP too. Forums are also good I’ve heard people say (although I’ve not joined one) that there are also some good breast feeding apps too!

✩✩

Thank you for reading my Breast Feeding journey so far…

Dr. Jack Newman has a Channel on YouTube, known as a Breastfeeding Guru and has lots of tips for a new mum. Including Latch, Cup Feeding and tons of other videos. It’s worth a look if you’re stuck.

Always ask your friends who are Breastfeeding mum’s for advice.

Breast Feeding Apps
Breast Start
Baby Buddy
Wonder Weeks

Top Tips For New Breastfeeding Mums from the Breastfeeding Team
With a newborn you’re looking for 3 sucks, then a swallow and a breathe.
A good latch is essential learning for you and for baby, usually before you leave hospital after the birth. If unsure then don’t go home uncertain.

Thank you for joining me on Severn Wishes for this honest post, I hope you have found it useful or in the very least interesting.

Breastfeeding is not the easy way of feeding your baby, especially when there are many issues with things that some people aren’t even aware of.

The main thing is that if you’re pregnant and you want to feed baby yourself, get the help you need that first day in hospital and speak to the right people, they will support you if you’re willing to work hard and make it work.

But remember that not all babies take to breasts, and you shouldn’t feel like a failure if it doesn’t work for you.

Just give it a go, that’s all you can do to start with. Good luck if you’re starting your BF journey!

✩ Sabrina 

Reviewing the Munchkin Sit & Soak Baby Bath

I have been testing this Bath on behalf of being an Argos Tester. This product has been sent to me in order for me to try it out and write about the functionality and purpose of it. My honest review is first posted to the Argos website.

My review is now live and has been submitted and accepted to Argos so I can now share this item with you.

Here is the Argos link to this product LINK

The dual stage Munchkin Sit and Soak Baby Bath has soft blue foam at the back for baby to lean against and the same with a shape at the base too. This surface gives friction for baby’s skin to be against and is designed to help them stay in place comfortably while bathing. The white lump in the base is to keep baby in place as they sit. Their bottom goes behind it with their legs going over the top. It must be comfortable because my son had no problem sitting in it from the first moment we tried him inside.

It has a water full level part way up. Always follow the instructions of use. It is designed for optimum comfort allowing your baby to stay warm during bathing.
The whole bath is lightweight and it’s dimensions are Height 38.4cm, Width 41.2cm, Depth 64.5cm.

There are useful warnings and safe uses on the inside of the bath on a sticker. Of course common sense is required when aspects like water are present. This bath is only to be used by adults, children are not to be left unattended at any point whilst in the bath, and you must follow the guidelines.

The bath has an attractive shape that is easy to get in and out of a bath tub and easy to fill. It has a handle for ease of lifting when it is empty. There is an easy lift able drain in plastic covering holes in the base, when bath time is finished it is easy to drain the tub without the need of tipping or lifting. This innovative pull tab is ideal for everyone to use because it’s so easy to use.

The innovative pull tab in order to drain the bath after use. This design is very useful and I think a key selling point of the bath.

This bath is very functional without taking up lots of space in your home. You can easily hang it on the back of the bathroom door when not using it. Our son was 8 months old at the time of testing and he sits comfortably in the bath and is even able to touch the sides. He found it good fun to be able to sit unaided by us due to the insert in the base, and he enjoyed the water.

My son demonstrates how a baby would sit inside the bath tub so you can see without any water inside. Their bottom goes behind the inserted structure and the foam keeps them in place. The drain can be seen at his feet.

Overall I am happy that I have had the opportunity to review this item, and because it is good for babies up until the age of a year we still have plenty of time to use and enjoy it. You could even pop it outside on a flat surface in the summer months and use it as a pool type of thing. It has a non-slip base and is sturdy when placed upon a flat surface.

Thank you for visiting Severn Wishes today, I hope you have enjoyed this Review and that you come back here for more soon.

✩ Sabrina ✩

Review of the KeriKit Thor Backpack and Changing Bag

The KeriKit Thor Backpack and Baby Changing Bag

I was so lucky to have won this backpack last Autumn, and I was ecstatic about the quality and the size. I can go out for the day with one bag for all things. I am able to fit a huge amount in this bag, and I will list the items below for those who are interested.

This bag was Oxblood coloured Genuine Leather and features two main compartments accompanied by several pockets that are zip protected. All the space and different areas to store items help with the general organisation of the bag itself.

Oxblood Thor Leather Baby Changing Backpack. RRP £275.

Features of the Thor Baby Changing Backpack

This leather bag has been award winning for Kerikit and is not just great for busy parents but anyone who likes a quality leather bag with tons of space. The one I was lucky to win was Oxblood but they currently supply a Nude or Tan shade of leather Thor bag.

The Thor features two large internal pockets that are separate. The main one has fabric divided into five sections so it’s easy to find what you’re looking for. It has fabric inside it that is waterproof and the outer leather is easy to wipe clean and maintain.

Two long leather straps at the back allow the bag to be carried on ones back, or you could place it in the bottom of a pram, or even use the hooks situated either side to hook on to pram hooks at the handle bar.

The back pocket section of the bag has a keys ring and luggage hook so they won’t get lost in the depths of the backpack.

The fabric itself has a stylish pattern on it and its colour makes it easy to see things when looking inside the bag.

In addition to the main part of the bag there are four zipped pockets, one horizontal compartment either side and one secret pocket at the back part situated vertically. These are all good sizes and add to the bags surprising versatility. Finally you will the fourth inside the main compartment, ideal for small medicines or valuables.

Bag Details
Weight 1.5 kg
Dimensions 30 × 18 × 40 cm
You also receive a baby changing mat and separate washable and waterproof lined food bag.
Me out and about with the backpack in use.

Overall I am so happy that I won this beautiful backpack, and I adore the colour too. It has now been up and down the country with us and it still fits everything inside it that we need, despite my son now being 8 months of age and us needing to take more things with us.

What I usually carry inside the bag on a day out includes a change of outfit for baby, his bottle of cooled boiled water, a bottle of water for myself, sweets and snacks for longer days out, 4 nappies (minimum), a packet of baby wipes, two creams, nappy sacks, 2 bibs, spare socks, a packet of tissues, 2 muslin cloths, spare top for myself and breast pads, one of his toys if not two, and finally a plastic bag for placing dirty items.

I can fit in the bag additionally items you would usually find in a ladies handbag, such as wallet, lip salve, toiletries etc, as sometimes I don’t want to carry more than one item. This does make the bag quite full up but it still closes due to the nature of the drawstring and magnetic stud.

My final review scores for the item are;
Quality 5/5
Design Practicality 5/5
Design Fashion 5/5
Value for Money 5/5

The 3 outer zipped pockets are really handy, especially this one situated at the back of the bag. The leather is beautiful too.

Here is the link to the current Thor backpacks available link

If you would prefer to browse all the baby changing bags available at Kerikit then click this link instead link

Thank you for visiting Severn Wishes for this review today, I hope that you have enjoyed it. Leave me a comment if you want to, I would love to hear what you think. What baby changing bag brand do you use?

✩ Sabrina ✩

Our Experience of Baby Sensory Class and How I Teach My Baby At Home

Our Experience of a Baby Sensory Class

Beach Theme – Under The Sea.

Using textures, sounds, bubbles, bright colours, animals, music, voices, singing, shiny surfaces, sign language and toys… Baby Sensory has something for babies of all ages. This class that I attended was for babies of only a few weeks old right up to 13 months.

Our son Baby A has just turned 6 months old, so he was able to appreciate a great deal of what was going on. There were various mats on the floor for parents to sit upon and soft mats to lay babies upon in front. The class interacted with the children on many levels, be it laying on their back, sitting up, laying on their fronts, and sat upon their parents laps even!

There is always a hello and a goodbye section of the class, then in between is a theme plus a short break midway through for feeding and changing, or just more playing.

Sand was substituted for oats so that babies weren’t in any danger if they happened to eat any. I thought this was a great idea! A variety of textures were used doing the hour, silk, organza, bubbles and soft mats. Sign language is used during songs to make the babies think about the words being sung and said. This is also a really nice part of the group activities.

Baby A enjoyed some aspects of the class more than others, such as the objects and instruments that he could personally interact with, especially when he could hold and feel them. He very much liked the shells and wooden objects that were in the bucket I was given in this class.

I have paid for a course of classes for my son and I to attend. I feel it’s a good idea to introduce him to other babies, various sounds and activities that I cannot do very easily at home. Plus it’s a good reason to get out of the house and for my son and I to have some fun learning things together.

If there are classes in your town I recommend that you give this type of learning class a go! If you find a good one the activities can be essential to your baby learning things and experiencing things in a safe environment.

Baby Sensory Class
Bucket and Mat for the Under The Sea Theme

How and What I Teach My Baby At Home

There are many things that I teach Baby A at home, and also when we are out and about. Such as pointing out colours, numbers, weather and words as well as the basics like animals and objects. You don’t need to spend a lot of money on things, and you can use items at home to create sensory things.

I really enjoy showing my son real objects. Ones that make noises and have great textures are the best types. We often use toys and explain what in reality they are based upon. We try and expose him to educational television programs and we try and use books daily too. Ones with pictures are best at the moment but we always interact with the books with words and noises to help him understand further.

Young babies can only see Black, White and Red colours, so it’s a good idea to begin showing them shapes and every day objects and short words that are designed in this colour pattern. As baby gets older you can show them more colours and build upon it week after week.

Repetition is the best way of learning, and a baby will begin to recognise objects from an early age when shown them on a regular basis. Our son liked particular animals that were on flash cards, so we aimed to buy him other things that had these things as the theme. Such as he liked the image of a snail in one of the books and so we attached a snail hanging toy for the arch on his play mat.

My Top Tips for teaching your child things at home, are to incorporate a section of learning time into your routine so that once a day your baby is learning. Use repetition and do any teaching when your baby is most awake and alert. Making the learning fun means your little one is more likely to enjoy it and recall aspects of it.

Learning with your child should be an activity that you can both enjoy, you can always get other people involved too such as grand parents and friends. If there are babies of different ages in the room you can get everyone to do things in a way that they would all benefit. Such as explain colours and objects to the younger baby while getting an older child to spell the word for example.

Baby Sensory Light Display


If anyone found this post useful then please leave me a comment. I may elaborate on ways that I teach if people would find it beneficial. And also explain about the items that I have made and created for our at home sensory experience.

Thank you for reading my blog today and for visiting Severn Wishes, I hope you’ll stop by again soon. Have a great day!

✩ Sabrina ✩

How a simple Cropped Hoodie from BooHoo is changing the way I consider breastfeeding in Public this season

How a simple cropped Hoodie from BooHoo is changing the way I consider breastfeeding in Public this season

 

It’s not always easy to find comfortable and practical clothing that you can wear in the colder months that’s both suitable for breastfeeding and preventing you from freezing in the process. I’m like many other mum’s out there who consider buying things to help themselves out, are usually last on the list of priorities. However on a recent window shop scroll through the boohoo website I saw something that I knew for me would be a game changer. For £12 boohoo are selling cropped hoodies. This might not sound like anything special, but we’re fast heading into winter now. Considering I’ve been getting cold in cardigans and other loose articles of clothing that won’t get in the way of my son feeding… this was exactly what I had been waiting to find.

Not only has this hoodie allowed me to feed more comfortably, but it’s changed the way I feel about feeding my son around people who are not immediate family. It has given me confidence and hasn’t cost the earth. So many Maternity and Nursing items are highly priced, and at a time when you’re already forking out lots of money, you shouldn’t have to spend a ton on items to simply help you to accomplish what is both natural and a necessity for you and your baby.

The hoodie material is soft and thick, because it’s cropped it means that I can keep my arms inside the fabric, and just simply lift one corner to expose what I require for the feed.

This hoodie is ideal to wear all year round, with shorts and a T-shirt or with jeans and a tee in the colder months.

I’ve found this hoodie to be more than adequate for what I need, it’s both comfortable and practical, and doesn’t cost the earth either!

I highly recommend this style and quality of item from BooHoo and am very happy with the ones I bought.

As you can see me demonstrating in this image above, it’s easy to lift one corner of the hoodie. I normally am able to simply tuck the fabric up underneath and out of the way.

BooHoo Cropped Overhead Hoodie

Link


Was Available in
Black, Navy, Wine, Pink, White, Grey and Tan.


Quality of Material
– Very good, it washes well and wore well afterwards. The material is soft and comfortable on the skin.

Fitting to Size – I ordered a Small size because I’m usually a Size 8. It fitted perfectly along my arms and around my back and neck.

Details of the Small Size

60% Cotton and 40% Polyester.
Sleeve Length 63cm / 25”
Bust 53cm / 21”

Overall I’ve been very happy with my purchases, and I would purchase items like these again.


Thank you for visiting Severn Wishes today, I hope you have enjoyed this content. Have a lovely day.

 

✩ Sabrina ✩

Well Being and Health – Easy Ways To Make The Most Of Vegetables

Easy Ways To Make The Most Of Vegetables

 

We often throw away a lot of fruit and vegetables that have a habit of going off before we get around to using them. In this post today I’m going to outline the ways in which I make the most of vegetables and how easily you can so to.

 

Sabrina’s Top Tip is to invest in a blackboard or a meal planner or even both! That way you won’t forget to use what’s in your fridge! Plan out one night a week that is a Treat Night where you can have something tasty like chips with your evening meal, but otherwise mix up your vegetables so as not to get bored with the weekly selection.

 

Buy Frozen

You often get a lot more veg for your money with frozen, and it’s just as good for you with most brands choosing to freeze hours after the vegetables are picked. Frozen often gives you more per kilo as well, with things such as broccoli because you’re not paying for the weight of its stork, or spinach for example which is frozen in far larger quantities than you find it in fresh packets. Frozen veg also has the added benefits of you only using what you need each time rather than you wasting with cutting sections of fresh veg up when preparing them.

 

Make a Soup or Sauce

Usually I make a soup or a sauce out of veg that needs using up, or left over veg that wasn’t all eaten during something like a roast dinner.

 

Use your Peelings – They are the most nutritious parts!

If you often peel potatoes, parsnips, carrots and sweet potato, but throw those peelings away, you should consider making your own vegetable crisps out of them.
A greatly tasty and healthy snack for children between meals or as a starter while the evening meal is cooking. Keep them for 48 hours in a clean lidded Tupperware box to keep the crunch!

 

Save Money By Using the Stems

If you prepare Cauliflower and/or Broccoli regularly, do you ever use the stems? There are a few options to save you throwing them away.
Make Cauliflower Rice by putting the stems and any left over florets into a processor to make cauliflower rice.
Make an easy vegetable curry by cubing the stems of cauliflower with any left over potato and cook them a little longer than you would usually to soften them up.
You can take broccoli stems and either shave them finely using a peeler and fry them with stir fry vegetables or dice them and add them to pasta dishes.

 

Buy Seasonal to Save Money

Look into buying Seasonal Vegetables that are on offer in Supermarkets. Some of the larger ones in the United Kingdom do weekly deals too! Make sure you plan your week around this and use up the items that will spoil first so as to ensure no waste.

 I hope you’ve enjoyed this short post and my vegetable tips!

✩ Sabrina ✩

 

Reviewing Baby Items – Newborn Nappies

Reviewing Baby Items – Nappies

Hello Severn Wishes followers! Today I am talking about Nappies! In fact I am doing this short review post today about which Newborn Nappies we found to be best. I am comparing on several different levels.

Our son is moving on to the next size up now, and it’s been interesting to look back at what we have tried and tested and what has worked for us. And it’s also been useful to compare prices! We shopped around to be competitive and even tried other brands because other brands were expensive.


✩ Newborn Nappies Tried & Tested ✩
✩ Pampers – Size 1 Newborn 22 Nappies for £2.50 – £4.00
✩ Tesco Loves Baby – Size 1 Newborn 25 Nappies for £0.85 – £1.00
✩ Aldi Mamia – Size 1 Newborn 24 Nappies for £0.85
✩ Boots Baby – Size 1 Newborn 24 Nappies for £2.50 

✩ Scores ✩

✩ Pampers ✩
Design 5/5
Fitting 4/5
Sticky Tabs 4/5
Wee Indicator 5/5
Details – 4 – 11 lbs (2-5kg), Wetness Indicator. Quilt lined so as to pull wetness away from baby’s bottom. Soft materials used and air channels to keep the skin breathable. Navel friendly shape and design for newborns. Nappy design has size increase indicator lines. Recommended by the British Skin Foundation.
My Opinion – The design is great on Pampers, they are soft and have a good fit. We have had over 100 of these nappies and only 1 that leaked. I would purchase these nappies but only on special offers and not at full price. 

✩ Tesco ✩
Design 5/5
Fitting 5/5
Sticky Tabs 5/5
Wee Indicator 5/5
Details – 4 – 11 lbs (2-5kg), Wetness Indicator and it has Soft Cord Protection. Hypoallergenic and Dermatologically Tested. Nappy design has size increase indicator lines. The sticky tabs are strong and they are also a different colour which makes it easier to see on those sleepy nappy changes in the middle of the night. It has a nice colourful design as well.
My Opinion – Overall a great fitting nappy that is soft for baby and affordable too. We haven’t had any nappy malfunctions as yet and we have now used over 300 of this type.
 

✩ Aldi ✩
Design 5/5
Fitting 5/5
Sticky Tabs 4/5
Wee Indicator 5/5
Details – Size 1 is 4 – 11 lbs (2-5kg), Wetness Indicator and Soft Cord Protection. Hypoallergenic and Dermatologically Tested. Anti Leak System and Breathable Soft like Cotton. Nappies are made from fibres that are from sustainable forests. With a cute character on the front and size increase indicators.
My Opinion – Very soft and easy to apply with the long sides and long frills to prevent leakages, a great nappy overall. We have been very happy with the ones that we purchased, both quality and price.

✩ Boots ✩
Design 3/5
Fitting 3/5
Sticky Tabs 3/5
Wee Indicator 4/5
Details – Size 1 is 4 – 11 lbs (2-5kg), Wetness Indicator and Soft Cord Protection. Hypoallergenic and Dermatologically Tested. Basic Design.
My Opinion – We had 3 Nappies leak out of the 24 in the pack. They were not as soft as other brands either and I had two nappies where the tabs came clean off during a nappy change rendering that nappy unusable.

✩✩✩
 
Overall Thoughts

I would happily continue with either Tesco or Aldi Nappies. We prefer shopping in general at Tesco though, so we wouldn’t go out of our way to find an Aldi store just to get their nappies. However if we were passing one or heading there for another reason I would more than likely stock up on a few of their Mamia Nappies, they are good quality and very affordable. The Tesco Loves Baby Nappies have been best overall while staying affordable, and the bonus is that we get points on our Tesco Rewards card.

✩✩✩

Thank you for reading this short review post today. I hope that I have given you an insight into the world of Newborn Nappies and if anyone needed some inspiration on what brand to try… you now have my opinions.

✩ Sabrina ✩

My Top 5 Tips For New Parents


Sabrina’s Honest Lifestyle Post
 

My Top 5 Tips for New Parents

There is always a vast array of advice that is hurled around when you’re pregnant or a new parent. Some of it I found wasn’t all that useful because it was either peoples opinion that was exaggerated or it was biased. Every parent and every baby is different, but I hope that you can appreciate my life honest post which is more about practical tips, rather than scare stories. I would never dream of telling someone how to parent, my tips are just my honest advice for what has so far worked for us. I hope that you enjoy my post.


Food and Drink 

You’re going to want to stock up on food and drink and snacks. Leaving the house is going to take a lot more effort from now on so take my advice, do a bulk shop to fill your cupboards, do some bulk cooking of basics for your freezer and make sure you’ve got a variety of snacks in too. You will find those early morning feeds a shock the first few days and tasty sugary things will be your new best friend. I recommend Mini Cakes or Dried Fruit, definitely sugar! Caffeinated drinks will also help, but be careful about your in take if you’re breast feeding.

My Top Tip – We keep a mini cool bag in our bedroom filled with snacks and bottles of water for those late nights and early mornings. It saves you from going downstairs when half asleep!

Muslin Cloths

I had a grand total of 4 Muslin cloths the week that my son was born. By the time he was a month old we had fifteen cloths! And some weeks it’s still not enough (with some being dirty or in the washing machine for example). My main tip is to always keep several at arms length. Then keep one at either of your bedsides, more than one in the area that you all lounge together, one where you change your little one and at least one in their changing bag too! There still won’t be one when you suddenly need it, unless you place a longer one over your shoulder while you’re at home. But on a serious note, these cloths are a godsend, especially when baby is having a sickly day, or is dribbling due to teething. The best ones that we found for absorbency were from Mothercare, the softest were from Tesco.

My Top Tip – Keep track of how many you’ve got so you don’t end up with them all in the wash and also purchase similar colours so they’re easier to wash in bulk!

Teach Your Hands Now!

So you’re Right handed, well you may want to try using your Left more. You will find that once baby comes along you will only have one hand free and sometimes not even very often! So train your hands now before your baby arrives. Make sure you can blow your nose, make a drink and eat – all with the hand you wouldn’t usually use! That will set you up if you can master at least something. After eight weeks I can prepare and eat things, plus fill the washing machine and start that off all one handed.

Support One Another

Before you have children you don’t realise what an overwhelming responsibility it is for most of the time. I kept hoping I would have the time to do things that I wanted, read a book, learn a new game, write a blog post… but the reality is nothing like that. Even if are lucky enough to have a baby who actually sleeps between feeds, there will always be clothes to wash, housework chores to do and getting yourself organised too! (Drink / Hot Meal / Shower and a Change of Clothes).

The thing that your partner who works must understand is that just because you’re at home, doesn’t mean you get a break. Some days you will eat and even go to the toilet with your child in your arms, because that’s safer than putting them down and them screaming so loud the neighbours 6 doors down hear them!

Compromise is the key. If your partner needs a break to shower or even go for a ten minute walk to get some fresh air, you need to support them. It’s tough being responsible for a tiny human, they rely on us 24/7 and sometimes we all need a few minutes to ourselves, mostly so we feel like us and not just Mum / Dad.
Another way you can support one another is that one feeds the other winds, and keep swapping. Your baby needs to get used to both of you putting him/her to bed so that both of you can be a comfort.

Finally remember that you’re in this together, if you’re tired take it in turns to take a nap. If one of you is feeling overwhelmed then do something nice together as a family and turn it into a positive experience.

My Top Tip – Take things in turns and ask one another every day if the other is doing okay.

Every Baby Is Different So Trust Your Instincts

So I found that within hours of having my son my instincts were kicking in. I knew things that I didn’t before and I had ideas about how to cope that came through the living experiences with my baby.

Trust that you know what your baby needs, and after a few weeks you’ll know what their cries mean anyway.
Don’t be afraid of asking your own parents for their advice, and remember you don’t always have to take it from anyone especially if you disagree.

You will know your baby after only a short time, trust yourselves.

Thank you for your on-going support for me and my blog, please leave me a comment if you enjoyed this article. And don’t forget to follow me on Social Media to see what I’m up to on a more daily basis!

✩ Sabrina 

Reviewing Baby Items – Bean Bag Planet

Reviewing Baby Items – Bean Bag Planet

I first saw the Baby Bean Bag on Facebook several years ago. After years of following their page and reading customer reviews, when I got towards the end of my pregnancy I decided to order a Bean Bag for us and our new little one.

What appealed to me the most was that the Bean Bag can be used afterwards for Toddler and Child as our child grows up. It will eventually be a part of their bedroom as somewhere comfortable to sit and read.

There were many designs to choose from including unisex ones. You receive the Bean Bag with the Harness Cover and a Spare Non Harness Cover too in the same colour. Despite this I decided to order an extra harness one so that if our one ended up in the washing machine we would still be able to place baby on the bag safely.

You do have to pay an additional £3.99 for the Bean Bag Filling, but they guarantee that it is Fire Safe Polystyrene balls that they use.

I featured these bean bags on my “Baby Wish List Post” and we had one given to us as a joint gift for our son from friends who read my blog. This excellent coincidence meant that we received two bags the week before our son came into the world. And it’s been very handy to have one on both floors of our house.

I purchased the Cars version of the bean bag in Grey, where as our friends got us the Safari one in Yellow.

Here are some close ups I have taken of the very cool designs situated on either of the bean bag planet bags we have.


The bright colours are inviting, and there is also a bear that you can find playing peek-a-boo on all of the designs I have seen. This is a cute addition so when children are older they can search for this little bear on the sides of their seat.

So I wanted to include what my husband thought in this review too, I will firstly outline what I think and then dictate his thoughts.


My Opinion

A very handy product to have in more than one room of the home, it is convenient to place baby into safely while you need your hands free. An ideal size and height too because you don’t have to bend too low to place baby into it. This item has become one that we use daily in our home to accommodate our needs between feeds and changes of our newborn baby. We cannot wait for him to grow with the bean Bag too and it will be used in his bedroom one day.

I found the ease of ordering on the website a good experience, and there were a ton of great designs for us to choose from. As for delivery the bean bag comes wrapped and then boxed but is flat. You place the bean bags inner bag inside when it arrives.

The quality of the fabric, bean bag base and the unique design of it, is what had me intrigued enough to buy. I have not been disappointed in the item. I did think they were quite expensive for what they are, but when you use the product as much as we do, its convenience outweighs how much I ended up paying.

After using the product now for several weeks I have to say the easiest thing about them is the use, just place your child in the centre and strap them in using the harness. I am happy that I made this product purchase for our son. Here is a photograph of our son at a week old, enjoying a nap in his Safari bean bag.

Quality of Product 5/5
Value for Money 4/5
Delivery of Product 4/5

Overall Experience 5/5

 

My Husbands Opinion

A versatile and good quality material that is soft for baby to lay on. Our newborn is always comfortable when lay on it. I like that our baby has a good view when laying on the Bean Bag too. It’s a useful item that can be easily moved around the home into any room or living space. We think they are that good a product that we now have 2 of them (thanks to a gift)! We use 1 for upstairs and 1 for downstairs!

The bean bag itself is good value for money however be aware of the additional charges to fill the bean bag with the polystyrene balls, and there are quite high delivery costs as well.

I would recommend this product and it’s a good idea for first time parents. It’s also useful for parents with pets because it allows baby to be quite a lot higher than the floor and therefore easier to keep an eye on unlike the mats that require babies to be lay on to a flat surface on the floor. Here is another image of our son, as you can see he is happy and content on the bean bag, awake on this image as opposed to asleep on the previous one.

Quality of Product 5/5
Value for Money 4/5
Delivery of Product 4/5
Overall Experience 4/5

✩✩✩

Here are some Bean Bag Planet designs.

✩✩✩

Links

Bean Bag Planet Website
Bean Bag Planet Facebook

✩✩✩

Thank you for supporting Severn Wishes blog today, don’t forget there are plenty more reviews to read across the website, just click one of the categories that interest you on the main page. I hope that you have enjoyed this review and I wish you a wonderful rest of your day.

✩ Sabrina 

 

 

Reviewing Baby Items – Poddle Pod

Reviewing Baby Items – Poddle Pod

My husband and I purchased a Poddle Pod at the Manchester Event City Baby and Toddler Show in March. It cost £34.99 (special price for the event) and we chose the Nelly Parade cover. We were impressed with the demonstration of the product, and I had also followed the company for some time on Facebook. I was adamant that I wanted one of these for when our baby came along.

Poddle Pod have many designs, some are unisex and others are more suited to a gender of baby. But not only do these make great items for parents to buy, but they also make a great gift to expecting parents, that is my honest opinion because it has become extremely handy to us.

Most newborn babies love to be held in someones arms, cuddled and cradled. However this isn’t a practical part of every day life for many of us. Poddle Pod has been designed to give parents a few hands free minutes while ensuring baby is comfortable and safe inside the inner shape of the Pod. It has a very clever design which is weight activated, this allows the baby to supported and makes them think they are being held.

It’s heavier than you would think to pick up, and has a soft fleece side and a patterned cotton side to the machine washable cover. The Poddle Pod is made from high quality fabrics and the filling of the pillow is both anti fungal and hypoallergenic. The best part for me is that it’s also made here in the United Kingdom, and you all know how I love to support businesses in out country above all others.

Poddle Pod is currently available in two sizes, which are 0-6 months and  6-36 months of age. I would certainly consider ordering a larger Pod when our son grows out of this current one.

I wanted to include my husbands thought in this review, so here are what both us think of our Poddle Pod purchase.

Quality of Product 5✩
Value for Money 5✩
Use and Purpose 5✩


My Opinion

I like the convenience of the Poddle Pod, it is easy to move around the home or to take with us to visit family. It’s unique internal shape is a comfort to our baby and we often find that placing him inside it to chill out during a cry is really handy. Not only does baby like resting but also sleeping inside the Poddle Pod. I have often placed baby inside the Pod after a feed and a winding, so that I can keep an eye on him as he dozes before placing him into his basket.

The shape and size of the Poddle Pod is ideal to lay on several surfaces including the bed and the sofa. Many a time have I been running errands in a room and placed my sleepy baby inside the Poddle Pod knowing he will be comfortable. I was very happy with the overall quality of the product and the material is excellent, easily washable and to get on and off the item using the zip.

This is a rather useful item that I am very happy that we purchased. So far it has been durable and has held it’s shape during the first eight weeks of its use.
I would certainly recommend this product to first time parents who may need somewhere safe to lay their baby down at times. Especially if they are feeling overwhelmed with the need for baby being held, this allows a few moments of respite for them while they do daily things. Even having a warm cup of tea or a hot meal can make all the difference in those first few weeks of being a new parent. The Poddle Pod can aid people in achieving this with its clever design.


 

Quality of Product 5✩
Value for Money 4✩
Use and Purpose 4✩

 

My Husbands Opinion

I liked that the Poddle Pod fitted comfortably inside our travel crib for comfort while sleeping away from home. We like the overall design and the shape commits to holding our baby safely. The cover is convenient to remove when requiring a clean and we purchased an additional cover so that if one is in the wash we can still use the Pod.
We chose the Elephant design due to the nature of our nursery theme and are happy with the quality of it. Although there were many great designs to choose from, and we would consider other ones when we get the larger Pod in the future.


Discount

If you would like to receive 10% off your purchase of Poddle Pod then follow them on Facebook (link below) and use the code FB10 on their website.

✩✩✩

Important Information About The Poddle Pod

✩ Great for Supervised Naps
✩ Perfect for Photography
✩ Excellent for Support and Comfort
✩ Ideal for Tummy Time
✩ Easily Portable
✩ Machine Washable Cover
✩ Weight Activated

 

✩✩✩

Links

Poddle Pod Website
Poddle Pod Facebook Page


✩✩✩

Thank you for supporting Severn Wishes blog, I hope you have enjoyed this review and I wish you a wonderful day.

✩ Sabrina