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I can’t express how daunting having two kids in diapers is, and when a GI virus goes through the house, my poop diaper tally can reach its limits daily. Last month supplied an unusually harsh case for Harper Morgan. It required thinking outside the box yet again. I have a constant supply of perineum herbs that I offer my doula clients. I started using them for the kids’ diaper rashes during their bath time a little over a year ago, but this last case was so painful I couldn’t get her to sit in the tub. What is a mama to do? Then I realized she wasn’t having it with our usual disposable wipes either and decided to see what would happen if I made homemade wipes. She ended up with a combination of herbal wipes and needing the hard core petroleum based ointments from the store. Yeah, I know, not my usual plug but desperate times called for desperate measures and the non-petroleum products were not cutting it this time. Wondering what I did? Here are the recipes that I usually use and an easy modification if you don’t have anywhere to buy perineum sitzs bath or loose herbs quickly.
For my doula clients, I use a modified version of Wellness Mama’s After Birth Sitz Bath. If you are going to use this for your baby, dilute it a lot. It is meant to help with symptoms from a vaginal birth and baby won’t need the level of astringent the recipe creates for mama’s healing body. Truth be told, you can get away with just using calendula and/or lavender herbs and skip the salt all together for diaper rashes.
Here is my version that I keep on hand for doula clients~
1 part Comfrey Leaf
2 parts Lavender Flowers
2 parts Red Raspberry Leaf
1 part Yarrow Flower
1 part Calendula Flowers
1 part Uva Ursi Leaf
1 part Dead Sea Salt
For the video I used ~
2 parts Calendula
1 part Lavender
You can even use an herbal tea bag like Stash Tea and see if all you need is a little gentle lavender.
If you find that desperate times are calling for desperate measures and you need to apply a petroleum based lubricant between diaper changes, this mixture is incredibly hard to blend. I would highly recommend using a cheap blender that you don’t plan on using the beater for food again. I also found that the A&D ointment ended up diluting the Desitin, especially if you are buying the extra strength in the purple box. If I have to make this again, I will probably try just using Desitin and the liquid antacid and keep the strength more concentrated. We also learned that along with protecting her delicate tush, the mixture created a ripe environment for blow outs. The cream also created a barrier for the diaper and the poop would end up leaking out the sides. The recipe that I was given is as follows.
Instead of buying expensive oatmeal bath products to soak in, put your dry oats in your bender to make a powder. You can add this straight to the bath water and it won’t clog up your drain. The oatmeal soak will feel soothing to their tender rash and you don’t have to worry about there being anything toxic if they get the water in their mouth. Do you have some Single Grain Oatmeal left in the pantry, from introducing solids? You can even repurpose those oats in the bath tub. I have also heard of mama’s putting the oats in a sock, tying a knot in it and letting their child play with it in the tub. Every time they squeeze the sock it releases oat mixture into the tub and then you can just throw the sock away when you are done.
These are just a few of our go to remedies when a rash comes knocking on our door. They are especially helpful if you are not nursing and can’t use your breastmilk on the rash. What are some tried and true ways that you use in your house for rashes?
A review of how to use the Kiinde feeding system and how it will make everyone’s life easier when you are not there.
Today, I would like to talk about a newer product on the market for supplemental feeding. Kiinde was started by a dad who wanted something easier for his partner and himself when it came to her being away from the home. After realizing that we were going to have to make a change in our pumping/ feeding routine with our third, we decided to give Kiinde a try and here are 4 areas that Kiinde has changed our lives for the better and a video demonstration on how to use it.
For Mom –
Overall, I think bags are easier to use than bottles when pumping. I exclusively used bottles with my first two children. I didn’t want to spend money on bags over and over. Except I ended up spending way more money on the bottles. I had to have a ton of bottles rotating with me at work, the fridge at home and the caregiver. I had to transfer milk out of the bottle for freezing in trays and then transfer back when needed, which resulted in losing milk in the container every time I transfered. I was also the primary person to clean them and to make sure everything was all set up for the next day. I had no idea what I was missing before.
Fast forward to today, as a doula, I can be gone for a really long time from my children. I average 18-24 hours away per birth. It was clear that exclusively using bottles this time wasn’t going to work. The bulk of bottles to pump for that long alone would require a small traveling suitcase, just for the pump and bottles. I also don’t attend a birth every day or once a week, which means most of the milk gets put in the freezer to wait for the next time it is needed. Imagine all the freezer space that would be dedicated to bottles alone or the time to transfer into trays to freeze. I started looking at using bags as an option and found the Kiinde System on Amazon. My first thought was, “Well, I am going to have to use bags anyway so why not give this new product a try. Worse case is that I end up dumping it from the bags into bottles like old-school bags anyway.” After using this system personally since February with my youngest, I can’t say enough good things about this product.
Pumping is really just pumping when it comes to products and mom but here are some of my favorite things about the Kiinde system every mom should consider –
You can load up your pumping kit with many bags at once so you don’t run out b/c they are compact.
You can store tons of filled bags without needing a big cooler.
When using a hands free bra to pump, they are lightweight and don’t pull on your breast and bra when filling with milk.
The kit comes with a storage rack to easily keep bags rotated for use.
You don’t have to spend time that you could be bonding with your baby washing bottles every night.
You can rest easy knowing that your child’ caregiver has a quick and easy system to use while you are away
2 For Baby’s Caregiver –
I should probably have had my husband write this section since he is the primary person who watches our children when I am at work but I will do my best to articulate from a mom’s perspective what I have noticed and why I think every caregiver should try this product.
So back to bottles and what we did before…….
Imagine a first time dad and being left home alone with a baby. This goes for all baby’s, whether fed formula or milk. They need to learn about each other and eventually daddy learns hunger cues and baby’s routine but added to that is the stress of how to actually use the products, how to prep the food, what temperature is the right temp. I am not saying caregivers can’t adapt and figure this out but having a straight forward system is great. Here are the reasons why this system will blow away the competition for ease of use when mom is away.
There is no transfer from bag to bottle. You simply attached the bag to the bottle frame, attach the nipple and go. No milk is left or lost in the transfer.
That also means no bottles to wash. The only part the needs to be cleaned is the nipple. Just throw the bags in your recycling.
Their unique warming system warms the bottle to the right temperature without overheating by warming swirling water around the milk until done. As long as you follow the guidelines the milk shouldn’t ever be to warm for baby or damage the milk by overheating.
The ability to use included adapters for main brand bottle nipples. Maybe this whole thing sounds great but your baby prefers another brand bottle. Simply attach the appropriate adapter and use whatever brand bottle top you would like.
Adapters available for the Kiinde System
The First Years™
For Baby –
My first two children had colic. Which means they needed the more expensive bottles with the special flow system. Besides the ability to use most major brand nipples, which means baby can use the nipple that works best for their feeding, you have the ability to remove all the air from the bag before feeding. This creates a vacuum seal, eliminates the need to buy special bottles and more closely mimics feeding at the breast with no air in the bottle.
Extension into Solids –
They really thought of everything when they created this system. I remember being so overwhelmed with my first that the thought of making homemade baby food was the furthest thing from my mind. When my second came along I realized how easy it was and way cheaper. We would use homemade food when home and saved the packaged stuff for when we were out and about. I grew more confident with homemade food with each child but I still couldn’t wrap my brain around using homemade food away from home, especially when traveling.
Well the wonderful people at Kiinde found a way to do this as well. When you buy the gift set it comes with what you will need for the Foodi system. After making your puree, fill the same bags you use for storing milk with their special transfer cup and freeze/ refrigerate. When you are ready to use it just warm in the same warmer, attach their spout or spoon and serve. I like the spoon because you are able to squeeze right from the bag onto the spoon. This reduces the chances of contamination from baby/ toddler’s saliva and the food. I really appreciate the ability to make my own food pouches. It was something that I said many times when I was making homemade food for my son. He still loves to eat the big kid pouches from the applesauce section of the grocery store and we have been discussing making him his own food pouches and saving money there as well. The average cost of an organic 4 pack of fruit/ veggie pouches at the store is $4 for 4X 4 ounce pouches.
PS~ We have also figured out how to warm distilled water for our neti pot in a small mason jar. If you use the 6 ounce mason jar it averages to 6:15 for body temperature water, add your pre-measured packet of salt and cleanse away.
Please let me know if you have any questions, comments or concerns about how to use this system while pumping, as the caregiver or with solids.
The memoirs of a Lowcountry doula as she guides women on their journey from maiden to motherhood.