Just to continue off of last week's topic, I thought this would be a good time to share some of my favorite feeding tools.
First, we'll go with a pump. Ole Faithful. The black bag I can't wait to retire! I have a Medela Pump-In-Style-Advanced.
I'd heard great things about Medela, it's well recommended, and H registered for one a couple months earlier, so I felt really good about this choice. And this thing is a power-horse. I have the tote, which I load with all my breastfeeding gear (hands-free-nursing bra, cooler for milk, all the pump parts and an extra set, nursing cover, a set of breast pads, and some storage bags).
As far as accessories, I really only have the car-adapter, which I use daily when I pump in the car on the way to work.
The other pumping accessory must-have (seriously, MUST have) is a hands-free pumping bra. I did a couple weeks without it, and there is nothing fun about having to sit and hold the pump.
This allows me to do other things while pumping - (which unfortunately includes working) and is pretty much the only thing that makes pumping bearable.
When it comes to storage, here's my system:
I already wrote about the 1-ounce milk trays. And then I pop out the sticks and put them in Lasinoh bags.
And then they go right in the freezer.
When it comes to feeding, we started out giving Thatbaby Dr. Brown bottles. Which are great, but Thatboy wanted some variety so we picked up a set of Tommee Tippee. And this is where I'm going to tell you about how fabulous Tommee Tippee bottles are. Disclaimer - I want to emphasize that the best bottles to use for your child are whatever bottles your child will take. Simple as that. For us, the Tommee Tippees worked for Thatbaby AND worked with our system.
Due to the size, we could easily put the frozen sticks in and let them defrost right in the bottle - not the bags. I'd heard that sometimes the milk-bags can leak, but leaking is never an issue with my method.
The other reason I love Tommee Tippee? Amazing customer service. In the beginning, I was a little lazy with labeling Thatbaby's bottles for daycare. I used a sharpie, that often rinsed off when they rinsed out his bottles. And sometimes the caps would get sent home with another kid who didn't label his bottles at all. At one point, I realized we were down 3 caps. I tried to buy some extra, but couldn't find them. So I emailed Tommee Tippee, who promptly sent me free replacement caps! They have a customer for life with me.
When you move beyond the bottle stage, it's time for the sippy cup. We never used one. Both Thatboy and I use plastic cups with lids and plastic straws - which keeps waters safe from flailing baby arms. Around 4 months, Thatbaby became very interested in our straw cups. It wasn't long before he was trying to drink from them, and actually getting water out. So we bought him a Playtex 'lil gripper straw cup at 6 months.
He figured out how to use it immediately. We started using it for giving him some water with meals and now he drinks all his milk from these cups.
And as for food, we love our Fisher Price Space-Saver High Chair.
It sits right on a regular chair, so it doesn't take up any extra room. It reclines, so we could start using it at 4 months, not that he was eating then, but that's when we started having him sit with us at meals to get the idea of what mealtime includes. And very importantly - cleanup. It wipes down so easily and I can throw the fabric part right in the washing machine.
As a useful fashion statement, we adore Bumkins bibs.
Cute, colorful, large enough to cover the entire chest, and the material wipes/washes very easily. Plus Thatbaby loves the pocket for storing food. I love the pocket because it catches a lot, so we don't waste a ton of food to the floor (but obviously no bib can eliminate floor food completely).