Tag Archives: breast-feeding

Daisy cooks, too.

30 May

Now, I know Violet has been the resident recipe poster, but I can get down with some cooking too. Violet asked me to share a few little tips and tricks that I’ve shared with her, so here you go..

I have great eaters. I really can’t complain, they will eat just about anything. Why? Not sure. Is it luck? Did I expose them to different foods when they were young, via my eating habits & breastmilk? Who knows. Maybe a good combo of both. Even with my great eaters, one of which (Diva) lists raw broccoli as one of her favorite foods, I still like to sneak in even MORE vegetables than they would normally eat.

Funny story, when Diva & Intuitive were about 2 or so, we were grocery shopping, strolling through the produce section, in fact. Diva begins a full on tantrum because she thought I didn’t put broccoli in the cart. Can you imagine this little pig-tailed girl, screaming her little brains out because she thought that mean old mommy DIDN’T get broccoli? The laughter coming from the other shoppers was pretty excellent when they realized that she was yelling for broccoli.

Anyways, “hiding” veggies in meals isn’t a new concept. There are cookbooks written on the subject. These are just some of the things that I’ve done.

Making spaghetti? Using jar sauce? Good shit, go for it. Whenever I make it, I will use a large grater and grate a few carrots, some squash, zucchini, finely cut spinach. Dump the jar of sauce in a big saucepan and dump the veggies in, simmer it all while your pasta is cooking. The veggies will cook down, and be completely unnoticed by even the pickiest eaters. My kids KNOW I do this, and couldn’t care less!

Tacos? Grate some of the same veggies into the meat while you’re cooking it. Same concept as the sauce, noone will notice.

Has your kiddo said no to baby food? Is she ready for the real stuff? Don’t worry. I’m sure you have 8 million extra jars of baby food sitting around, so USE them for your cooking. Dump a jar of carrots into your spaghetti sauce. Any veggie, really. Have some fruit ones? Make your kiddo some PLAIN oatmeal, and put some in the oatmeal.

Sneaking good stuff in is easy. It’s easy, and no one will ever know.

You’ll probably feel kinda bad ass for pulling a fast one on your family.

Any other ways you guys sneak some good stuff in? Let us know!

-Daisy

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Celebrity Parents

30 Mar

Celebrity culture has always been somewhat of a twatwaffle to me. I don’t get into the drama; I don’t understand the hysteria. I don’t follow Perez Hilton’s blog. For all intents and purposes, I think celebrities are a bunch of middle class morons who happened to fall upon fame and wealth because they were either a) favored with big tits or b) can make themselves cry on cue. (Daisy and I are blessed with both of these attributes. Where are our millions?) At some point in their journey from mediocrity to internationally irrelevant, someone issued them all (collectively) a license for weirdness.

I didn’t used to mind the weirdness. Tom Cruise wants to put his money in a tax shelter and call it religion? Fine. Follow that up with a critique of psychology as a legitimate medicine practice? He’s an asshole, but I didn’t give him enough credit to care. Fergie wants to pee-pee in her pants without a Huggies, then shower in champagne to cover it up? Have fun! But then these weird-ass movie stars decided to tell the world how to parent. That’s when I became annoyed.

First, we had Mayim Bialik telling us that we need to breastfeed our kids until they’re five. (Anyone else think of the movie Grown Ups when you hear that?!)  January Jones, of Mad Men fame, wants you to eat your own placenta after you deliver your afterbirth. (And I know that in some less civilized cultures, that’s acceptable, but I’m a middle class American. We don’t cannibalize our extraneous organs.) Now, Alicia Silverstone wants us to feed our children like we’re pigeons by chewing our food and spitting it into the waiting infant’s mouth. Oh, hell no.

Here’s my problem: for one, parenting is a completely individualistic practice. No two mothers are alike, and no two children are alike. Prescribing any parenting practice is risky business (haha, Tom Cruise joke!) because methods that worked in one family may fail in another, and who will the failing family blame? The person who offered the advice in the first place. Not a wise idea if your income is based on your likability. My other problem with this celeb-mommy-culture is that too many people put these assholes on a pedestal. For these people, anything a favorite celebrity spews from her mouth is scripture. Cameron Diaz wants me to exfoliate with llama fetus eyeballs? Sounds great! Jack Black suggests I huff Dorito Cheese dust to make my hair grow longer? Yum! So when the Hollywood-types tell you that you should cover your kid in olive juice every day to prevent AIDS, some ignorant imbecile will take that to heart and buy a Costco-sized jar of olives.

Weirdo celebrity parents: keep your strange-as-shit thoughts to yourself. If you want to name your kid Pilot Inspektor or Jermajesty, be my fucking guest. No skin off my back. But to promote your strange (and possibly harmful) parenting tactics to your unassuming, impressionable fan base is wrong. You’re fucking with a child’s well-being when you tell his parent to eat a lock of his hair every year on his birthday, or whatever unusual shit you do with your children. Just like with politics, Hollywood Freaks, keep your nose out of shit you don’t understand, and stick to acting/singing/slutting.

Shrink Rap

16 Mar

Mental health is a funny thing. Your body could be operating at 100%, while you run five miles daily and eat nutritious meals, but if your mental health is imperfect, the rest of your world fails you.

I’ve been wondering why we have such a stigma against mental health treatments in our society. My husband and I are both in therapy (for different reasons), and we’re both medicated for what psychologically ails us. My family is completely supportive of our efforts to improve our mental health, just as they are of our efforts to lose weight, eat healthy foods, and exercise. Coming from a family where mental health is valued, I am shocked when I hear of the stigma that accompanies it in the rest of American society. I know my parents and siblings are more liberal than the norm when it comes to their perspectives on psychology and psychiatry, and I’m sure that is why I can’t comprehend how mainstream society perceives it.

What’s the problem, people? Why, as a culture, do we look down on people who treat their mental health with the same focus as they treat their physical health? We’re a society who will admonish a smoker for polluting his lungs, but we choose to look the other way when a loved one is trying to cope with depression, anxiety, or stress without a physician’s supervision.

I have the MyFitnessPal app. Dozens of friends send me encouraging comments online when I remain under my calorie intake goals for the day. When I joined a local gym, I got virtual high-fives all around. When I lose pounds, I’m rewarded with congratulations. Everyone wanted to hear the gory details of my graphic and painful labor and delivery, and congratulated me for pushing the kid out with strength and gusto. But when people find out I’m in therapy, and especially that I’m on medical leave from work to focus on my mental health treatments, they’re astonished. “Mental health isn’t real health – why did you use up all your sick days and take leave?” If you haven’t lived at the mercy of debilitating mental health, you can’t possibly understand.

I even quit breast-feeding for the sake of my mental health. Those of you who read my “Why I Quit Breastfeeding…and that’s OK!” post remember that I was struggling with internal and external triggers for depression after I had my baby. My choices were to either continue breast-feeding and try to fight my demons independently, or to resume my medication schedule and stop breast-feeding. (And yes, they were mutually-exclusive choices. Psych drugs are categorized as a Class 4, which means that they do effect fetuses and do transmit to baby through breast milk.) A stable, healthy mother is so much better for my child than a crazy mother with active mammary glands.

For those readers who are wondering if therapy is a good choice for you: it is. Whether you suffer from extreme depression symptoms or are simply passive-aggressive, therapy is an excellent way to exorcise those problems and get to the root of your troubles, thereby extinguishing them. Contrary to popular belief, therapy IS for everybody. Shit, even my therapist goes to therapy. We all come with baggage. (Reminds me of that episode of How I Met Your Mother where people are carrying around suitcases that say things like “Daddy Issues” or “Oral Fixation” lol) Some people have more problems than others, but I don’t know of one perfectly stable, confident, mentally- flawless person. Insurance is a bitch, and these treatments can be costly, so research what your insurance will and will not cover. Did you know that in many states, Medicaid even covers mental health treatments?

Before you resume passing judgment on those of us who take charge of our mental health, why don’t you check out the benefits that therapy has for yourself? You may find, like I did, that you love it. To those of you who are already working toward psychological Nirvana, mazel tov. You’re making a fantastic choice for your life and the lives of those around you.

© Daisy and Violet 2012. All Rights Reserved.

Why I Quit Breast-Feeding…and that’s OK!

26 Feb

Being Daisy’s Mommy-Apprentice, I knew from the time the sixth pregnancy test showed positive that I was going to breastfeed. I registered for nursing covers and nipple creams. I bought a $300 Medela pump. When my friends who had babies during my pregnancy fell off the Boobie Train, I scoffed. Determination of will, Ladies! I thought. Stick to it! I had learned though the 23871 baby books I read and frequent conversations with my heterosexual life partner that Breast Milk is the Best Milk, and I was damned if my kid was going to be some formula-feeding half-wit. Oh no.

When my kid finally came barreling out of my baby-maker, my world turned upside-down. Latching was difficult, but with the help of various Lactation Consultants (who were grabbing my boobs like I was in a Cancun Wet T-Shirt Contest), we eventually got her on. Hurdle number one, conquered. When the kid wound up in the NICU, the hospital gave me the Spawn of Satan pump to extract some breast milk for my jaundiced munchkin. Fine – I’ll endure some woosh woosh for a couple days. But then, the proverbial shit hit the fan (and no, I’m not talking about projectile baby poop.)

Home with my baby, the struggle to breastfeed continued. In her first few weeks of life, I nearly lost my shit. Post-Partum Depression was rearing its ugly head, but I was going to fight it. No more trips to my shrink, who had pre-pregnancy Violet on a variety of happy pills. This baby was going to receive unadulterated boob milk!

Until my father almost died. The phone call came after yet another sleepless night, pleading with my newborn to feed and sleep. He was in the hospital and in a coma, and there was nothing I could do but sit and wait. With my coping skills stretched unreasonably thin, I battled two demons – that of lowered milk supply, and the depression which was threatening my stable mindset. Two days later, my husband was downsized (even though his bitch of a boss knew very well that he just had a baby!) With Daddy in the hospital and Hubby out of work, I knew I was battling an uphill climb.

I relinquished and went to my shrink. First thing out of her mouth was: “They’ve reclassified your anti-depressants. They are now a Class 4, and they will most certainly enter your breastmilk and effect your baby. If I put you back on them, do you promise to stop nursing?”

My world was crumbling. All I wanted to do was breastfeed my child. We were making gains in the latching/milk supply department. There was a future for my boobs. But my doctor was asking me to choose my mental health over my child’s nutritional health, and I couldn’t handle that shit.

Daisy, my wonderful, rational Siamese Twin, talked me off my metaphorical ledge. She reminded me that a happy mother is a happy baby, and that baby formula is quite nutritious and not detrimental to baby’s development. A depressed, crazy mother, however, was. For the next two days, I pumped and pumped and pumped so my kid could enjoy as much Mommy Juice as possible before I began my meds. The first time I put a pill in my mouth and swallowed, I cried. Ultimately, my kid received breast milk for the first month of her life, between my boobs and my pumped supply.

Switching to formula was the best decision I have made for my family thus far. With Buddy staying home with Pterodactyl, it is much easier on both of us for her to be a formula baby. My regiment of anti-depressants has stabilized my brain, and I’m a happy Mommy. I don’t think my kid would have benefitted from my breast milk if it were diluted with tears, do you?

When people give me shit for choosing to take my kid off the boob, I don’t even flinch. I know it was the best choice for all of us. My kid is brilliant, sweet, and (just to squelch those stereotypes about formula babies) svelte. Mommy is balanced out, and Buddy isn’t calling Daisy up at all hours of the night asking her to comfort and fix crazy Violet anymore. So to all the holier-than-thou breast-feeders (not all breast-feeders, just those with rude comments about my family) who condemn us formula moms for feeding our kid from a bottle, all I can say is: Go Fuck Yourselves.

Epilogue: My daddy is just fine, now. Two scary surgeries and a long recovery later, he’s back to his normal self. =]

© Daisy and Violet 2012. All Rights Reserved.

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