I've just been informed the Breastfeeding Mums Blog has made it into the Top 100 British Parent Blogs and Bloggers!
It's celebration time! BreastfeedingMums, The Blog, has reached a new milestone... this is the two hundredth post! Who would've believed it?
So where did it all begin?
Well, it all began one day when I was feeling a bit down about the fact that I was stuck at home all day with a toddler and a new baby, with the school run for my eldest rapidly becoming the biggest social event of each day! I just lived for Monday mornings when I attended a local breastfeeding support group simply to get chatting to other breastfeeding mums.
I had reached a point in my life where I was seriously questioning why I had bothered with four years of university education, completing an English degree and a teaching qualification - when my chosen path was so obviously full-time mummyhood.
However, as I deliberated with myself, I quickly came to realise that I still had a burning ambition to educate.
Once a teacher, Always a teacher!
Hey, I've been nominated for the Blogger's Choice Awards!
Actually, to tell the truth my carnival friends and I all nominated one another for a bit of fun...
Anyway, I've been nominated for three catagories and you can vote for me (if you like!) in either or all of those catagories!
So go on, (please, pretty please!) make this mommy blogger a really happy mommy blogger by giving me, or one of my breastfeeding blogger buddies, your vote!
And in anticipation of your support, and to quote Jack after each breastfeed (because it's so cute), "Sank ooooh"! :)
(Image from my other blog, Lens Camera Action!)
Following my own celebrations over the weekend, it was Tara's 7th birthday on Thursday. We had a wee party at our house for her grandparents, then on Friday she had her big party in a kiddies place for all her friends and inbetween times I was busy organising party bags, weaning Jack and playing with my new toy - a Canon EOS 5D (whoopee!! :) ) which Stan totally unexpectedly bought me for my birthday.
However, aside from all that I have a confession to make...
I've been fretting a lot lately about what to do with this blog once I've weaned Jack.
Initially I started it as a way to introduce moms to my website, BreastFeedingmums.com but then found I was really enjoying meeting moms via the blog and it became more of a personal journey. But now as I near the end of my own breastfeeding experience I'm unsure whether or not to keep it going.
You see, I don't really want it to become an educational blog as such because that's what my website is - and so I find myself in a bit of a quandry. Because if I'm not breastfeeding what on earth will I talk about?
I've considered changing the name of the blog so that it has more of a parenting theme, but to be honest, I'm not sure that would work. After all you, my visitors, are usually breastfeeding moms looking for breastfeeding stories and links!
Many of you will already know that my other big interest in life is photography which is why I started Lens Camera Action a short time ago. I am also currently in the process of starting a photography website where I will hopefully sell my images. So you see, I have a lot of stuff going on in my head right now!
I have been feeling worried about what to do because I don't want to let my regular visitors down but my family keep telling me I have to follow my heart. And although I have put my all and everything into this blog, I am starting to wonder if it has run its natural course.
Although Breastfeedingmums Blog has been a great learning experience for me, it has been extremely time consuming. And since Sarah, my youngest daughter, will be starting school in September, I really want the next few months to be a lot of fun for her. I know all too well how quickly time flies once children start school and so I want to make the most of the next few months with her, creating lots of lasting memories like I did with Tara and will do with Jack!
So I'm thinking it's time at least to cut back on my posts here.
What I intend instead is that I continue to post once or maybe twice a week for the foreseeable future and just take it from there and see what happens.
Finally, just to reiterate, BreastFeedingMums Blog is not finished but please expect less frequent postings in the future...
Welcome to the fifth Breastfeeding Blog Carnival!
This month's topic is one many mums will be familiar with - good and bad breastfeeding advice!
As usual, everyone involved in the Breastfeeding Carnival has worked extremely hard putting together lots of excellent posts, the links to which are at the bottom of mine!
So here goes - enjoy!
Good Advice/ Bad Advice
As any breastfeeding mum will tell you, when you openly admit to either breastfeeding your child or to considering breastfeeding when you are pregnant, the advice from often well-meaning professionals and strangers comes flooding in. You are presented with a colourful array of tales - many of which stem from "this happened to a friend of mine" and so the urban myths take hold.
In my own experience I was very fortunate in that all I ever got was good advice, the best of which was being told by my health visitor to take breastfeeding as a whole on a feed-by-feed and day-by-day basis rather than aiming to breastfeed for a set period of time.
By proferring such words of wisdom the pressure to breastfeed for X number of months was immediately lifted and ironically I went on to breastfeed each of my babies for at least 15 months (still going strong wth number three at 20 months!) as opposed to the initial three months I had been aiming for!
Not all new mums are so lucky though. Just a few weeks ago I reported how one mother with a peanut allergy was advised by her GP not to breastfeed as it would make her baby more susceptible to allergies! Another lady I spoke to in just the last couple of days told me how she was advised to quit breastfeeding by her GP because she had mastitis!
With GP's of all people dispensing such bad advice, who can breastfeeding mums turn to in those early days when they feel everything they do is being judged and that everyone but them knows the answers?
Luckily, there are many organisations and groups just waiting to help. From breastfeeding support workers/ lactation consultants to websites like The Breastfeeding Network and La Leche League there is ample great advice and support available - assuming new mums know where to look of course.
And therein lies the rub...
Because if no-one is spreading the word about such wonderful sources of breastfeeding help, breastfeeding mums feel isolated, helpless and are obviously vulnerable to bad advice.
So I challenge every breastfeeding mother out there, instead of just offering your own words of support why not make a point of mentioning the names of the support workers, helplines, books and websites where professional breastfeeding support is available or which you made use of when you had problems.
Together let us put an end to all the bad advice that is scaring mums off and encouraging them to quit breastfeeding at the first hurdle. And if your good advice helps just one mum embark upon or continue breastfeeding then isn't that one more success story for us all?
Please visit the following regular contributors to the Breastfeeding Blog Carnival to read more stories of Good/ Bad Breastfeeding Advice:
Angela at Breastfeeding 123 writes about how to get good medical advice on breastfeeding.
Tanya from The Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog lists some of the commonly heard breastfeeding advice, good and bad, which bombards new mothers as well as suggesting ways to ensure the advice you get is good.
Andi at Mama Knows Breast suggests way to find a good Lactation Consultant and offers some breastfeeding tips.
Jennifer from The Lactivist writes about her own experience of exclusively pumping breastmilk for her newborn and offers advice and resources for other mums facing the same dilemma.
Please also check out this month's guest contributors:
Jennifer from Black Breastfeeding Blog writes about how her mother came to the rescue when she first started breastfeeding.
The Baby Gravy Train lists some useful things that made breastfeeding easier to cope with during the early awkward weeks.
Micky at Mocha Milk urges mums to learn to weed out the good advice from the bad by trusting their own instincts and seeking advice from reputable sources.
Karen at Cairo Mama confides that her own experiences taught her that breastfeeding is not a test and does not always work out as expected.
Stacie from The Twinkies lists some of the things she wishes she had known about breastfeeding when she first began her journey.
Steph from Random Wonderings posts a beautifully moving piece about her own disappointing attempts at breastfeeding.
It's hard to believe it's time again for submissions to the Breastfeeding Blog Carnival.
The theme for March is Breastfeeding Advice.
Was the advice you received on the whole good or bad?
If you are a blogger then you are hereby invited to share your story by submitting a post to the Carnival!
All submissions will be voted on by the other four permanent bloggers and me (ie Angela at Breastfeeding 123, Andi at Mama Knows Breast, Tanya at Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog, Jennifer at The Lactivist Breastfeeding Blog and Sinead from BreastFeedingMums Blog) - and the best of the bunch will be added to the Carnival as guest bloggers.
Contributing to the Carnival is a great way to gain extra visitors and links for your blog. And your blog doesn't have to be a breastfeeding blog in order to contribute - any parenting or mom blog is welcome to post a submission.
If you are interested, please email your submission to me by 26th February 2007 for the Carnival which will take place on 12th March 2007.
Before submission please read the following pointers carefully in order to improve your chances of becoming a guest blogger in March:
- Please write your post in a clear and concise manner.
- Check your grammar and spellings.
- Stay on topic.
- The overall quality of the rest of your blog and its relevance to our readers will be taken into account when choosing participants.
- If your blog post is chosen, on the day of the Carnival you will be reminded to include permalinks in a summary post to each of the other permanent blogs in the Carnival (ie. BreastFeedingMums Blog, Breastfeeding 123, Mama Knows Breast, Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog and The Lactivist Breastfeeding Blog) and to also include links to the other guest bloggers.
Wishing you lots of fun composing your post!
The third Breastfeeding Blog Carnival is scheduled to take place on January 1st 2007!
This time around we are blogging about New Year's resolutions, specifically Parenting resolutions. So we'll be writing, for example, about changes we hope to make in order to become better parents, to make more time for ourselves and our children and so on.
If you are a blogger and would like to submit a post for inclusion, please email it to me by 23rd December 2006. The best posts will be included in the Carnival and will gain lots of exposure for your blog, as you will get links from all five bloggers already involved in the Carnival.
We welcome all bloggers, male or female, just so long as your blog is relevant to our Carnival!
Guidelines which you should follow to increase your chances for inclusion:
- Please write your post in a clear and concise manner
- Check your grammar and spellings.
- Stay on topic.
- Link to each of the other blogs in the Carnival (ie. BreastFeedingMums Blog, Breastfeeding 123, Mama Knows Breast, Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog and The Lactivist Breastfeeding Blog).
I look forward to your submissions and wish you luck! Happy blogging!
Also they've pulled together a list of Top Picks of Christmas gifts from shops run by mothers. The blog owners have a collectibles and retro toy store and a rocking toy and kids furniture store, but they love to help promote other women owned shops.
I'm delighted to tell my readers that a new feature is about to be launched on BreastFeedingMums Blog.
In my previous post I mentioned my new buddies who are all breastfeeding bloggers. Well, we've decided to get together and have a monthly breastfeeding carnival. What this means is that each month we'll all have posts focusing around a particular idea or theme. We will then link our posts to one another thereby allowing our readers to see different slants on a particular idea. And just to remind you, the other blogs involved are:
The first post is due on Tuesday - so make sure to bookmark my blog to find out what we'll all be posting about!