Don't forget to check out V.I.P. which is a road map of the "very important posts" on this blog. Thanks for visiting!

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Friday, December 30, 2011

Glamma Momma Shirt Giveaway

This week's giveaway is sponsored by Erlaine, a fellow N@Wie who started the brand Glamma Momma.  Erlaine was inspired to create something that moms would want to wear to help them become proud of themselves.  Since she was a t-shirt gal, she thought about making statement shirts for moms!  Erlaine conceptualized each shirt and has them designed and printed by her brother in law.  New designs will be released from time to time.
of course, you know what my favorite design is!
Her Glamma Momma shirts are currently available in Spoiled! Store in Millenia Suites (Pasig) and in Tees Me (Pop Culture, Alabang Town Center).

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Guest Post: Our Lady of La Leche Shows the Way

Last month was the Feast of Our Lady of La Leche.  One of the Batch 3 LATCH Peer Counselors, Bianca Gutierrez became involved with the movement just as she was undergoing her training.   Since then, she has been quite active in the movement and in fact has organized another activity - "The Mother's Way," A Pilgrimage by Mothers and Mothers-to-Be held last 10 December 2011.  Her story on how she became involved in the movement is inspiring and it also paved the way for her to decide to proceed with the LATCH training and become a full-fledged peer counselor.  Read on.


Good afternoon brothers and sisters, and fellow mothers, believers of Our Lady of La Leche, Nuestra Senora de La Leche Y Buen Parto.

My name is Bianca Atienza-Gutierrez. I am a wife to my husband Aaron and a mom to my 15-month old son, Christopher. I am also managing a full-time career at a multinational corporation, in which I head the parenting club, a consultant for MAPECON pest control, and in training to become a certified lactation counsellor with LATCH. I am a working, breastfeeding mom.

Why am I speaking in front of you today? It is because Our Lady of La Leche asked me to tell you the story of how I met her.

Friday, December 23, 2011

DFABShop Ecobag Giveaway

Congratulations to Shirley Mae Tabora and Bing Lorenzo for winning the giveaway!

Please check your emails.

This week's giveaway is hosted by Dona Acero, a fellow member of N@W.   Dona used to be an IT System Engineer.  She is currently a stay-at home mom of a 6-year old daughter and a 2-year old son.  Dona breastfed both of her kids exclusively and decided to be a SAHM to focus on raising her kids.

She recently started a business DONA bags this year and also became a seller of Human Heart Nature products.  Dona is proud that all her bags are made in the Philippines.  Her idea to manufacture her own  bag line came from a fruitless search of a multi-purpose bag (diaper bag, ecobag) that was lightweight and functional.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Guest Post - Vegetable Wars: How to Get Your Kids to Eat Their Veggies!

Are you having trouble getting your kids to eat veggies? Then today's guest post written by Anne Mercado would be a perfect read!  Anne is a mom who is passionate about raising happy, healthy and smart children.  How? With a glass of information, a pitcher or two of love and patience, and of course, a bucket of humor.  She believes that though parenting is challenging, it doesn't have to be boring.  You can catch her at Green Eggs & Moms.

I was lucky that for N, eating vegetables was not an issue. We did make some effort and made her food quite presentable so she would be happy to eat the veggies.  We also involved her in the food preparation process which I think accounted for her hearty appetite.  If you do have a picky eater, read on and get some tips from Anne.  For further reading, you can also check out this book from Elizabeth Pantley - The No-Cry Picky Eater Solution.

Vegetables are the enemy!!!
This is probably what you think your toddler or pre-schooler screams in her mind when you tell her to eat veggies. To be honest, I don't have the slightest idea on what goes on in her tiny little head. Although, I do know this: there are ways to getting kids to like veggies, and hopefully stuffing themselves silly with this nutritious food.

Get your battle gear ready because here are awesome ways to win the veggie war!

For the purpose of this post, the term enemy shall refer to kids. From personal experience, I know that veggies are friendly folk; kids on the other hand may not always be.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Woombie Philippines Giveaway

Our Winners are:
 RiCalyn Sicad for liking the blog's FB page.  She wins 1 Woombie Swaddler (newborn)
Ria Denamarca Laab for following the blog on networked blogs.  She wins 1 Woombie Sleeper.

This week's giveaway is hosted by Val Choa of Quintbelles and Woombie Philippines.

I first met Val (who runs a cake business - Quintbelles - together with her sister) when I asked her to make N's 2nd birthday cake with the theme Strawberry Shortcake:

In the middle of this year, Val contacted me about a new business she started - distributing Woombies in the Philippines.   Val is not yet a mom but found the swaddlers so adorable and decided to bring them in.  She also did some research and confirmed that swaddling babies really help them to sleep better.  For those unfamiliar with it, the Woombie is a one-piece zippered peanut shaped swaddler that is soft and stretchy and creates a little happy womb-like space for sleeping babies.  The babies can still move and push their extremities out and work those muscles but the stretch of the fabric always brings them back in and cuddles them.  The Woombie also help babies sleep better, preventing startling issues, face scratching, overheating and allows parents to avoid the use of dangerous, loose blankets which may cover the baby's face.  The Woombie has been included by Glam-o-Mama Amanda Jacob in her Kiddo Picks.   
Woombies range from P1,200 - P1,500 depending on the style and can be purchased from Woombies Facebook or Multiply pages.  You can also take a chance to win one by joining the Woombie Philippines giveaway with 2 winners!  Prizes are 1 Original Woombie Swaddler (newborn size) and 1 Woombie Sleeper.  Join through Rafflecopter below.  Thank you Val for sponsoring the contest!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Gifts of Breastfeeding

"Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (December). For this month, we want to honor breastfeeding for having enriched our lives and blessed us, maybe even empowered us, in a way that only breastfeeding can. Please scroll down to the end of this post and check out the other carnival participants."

The holiday season is here and what better topic for the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival than the gifts that breastfeeding has brought to my family?  I won't be talking about the benefits of breastfeeding but rather about the new horizons that breastfeeding has opened up to me.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Bumblebear Shop Giveaway

Congratulations to Amee Go-Diu for winning the Bumblebear Shop giveaway!

This week's giveaway is sponsored by Sharlene Lao of the Bumblebear Shop.   Sharlene is a mom of 2 little girls who were the inspiration for her shop.  As a stay at home mom, she started Bumblebear because she wanted to earn extra money and at the same time be with her little girls.   Sharlene started her shop in the last quarter of 2010 and despite the challenges of breastfeeding (pumping while in bazaars - with one hand under the cover to pump and one hand to give out change to customers), she was able to successfully breastfeed her girls until they were 1 year old.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

SM Malls Harass Breastfeeding Moms

Interrupting the scheduled posts on my blog to share these two very important posts from Eliza and Ambquezada, which were in contrast to my own experience with nursing in public

From Eliza:  The Right to Breastfeed: An Open Letter to the SM Supermalls Management
From Ambquezada: An Incident in SM Davao

It is quite ironic especially since several programs have been launched this year promoting that "Breastfeeding is Welcome" in public establishments.  Plus SM Mall of Asia even hosted a photo exhibit showing breastfeeding moms all over the mall!!

So this makes me wonder why the change in policy?  Just because the mall has a breastfeeding station does not mean that the mom can ONLY BREASTFEED IN THE BREASTFEEDING STATION!  And if you think that families with kids shouldn't be exposed to breastfeeding moms, READ THIS and learn why children SHOULD witness breastfeeeding in public.

Breastfeeding mothers have the right to feed their children whenever they get hungry!! Know about your rights as a breastfeeding mother in the Philippines and stand up for them!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Join the December Milk Mama Diaries Carnival

It's Carnival time again and since it is the holiday season, what better topic to have but "BREASTFEEDING GIFTS".  You can share about how breastfeeding has enriched your life, delighted you or maybe even changed you.  Talk about your most favorite gift, pair it with a popular Christmas song or carol (e.g Twelve Gifts of Breastfeeding) - be as creative as you can!  Feel free to make it as personal, introspective or grateful as you can.

If this is your first time to join a carnival, you can check out my previous carnival posts to have an idea how this blog carnival works.  To join, please fill up this FORM.   If you don't have a blog but would like to join, please email me or Mec so we can arrange to have you hosted as a guest blogger.

Friday, December 2, 2011

MomMe Planner Giveaway

Congratulations to the winner!! Gretchen Abasolo

MomMe Planner is offering all Chronicles of a Nursing Mom readers a consolation prize of 15% off SRP plus shipping for all orders made until the end of 2011!! Mention "NURSINGMOM" when you order. 

I am an OC Mom and if you read my guest post over at OCMominManila, you can see how planners play an important part in my oc-ness! ;)  And this is why I got pretty excited when Shirley sent me this new planner to review - MomMe Planner.

This project was started in 2009 by a group of 4 college friends - Cherry, Carissa, Mira and Shirley.  During one of their Sunday get-togethers, they realized that there were young adults planners, teen planners, travel planners, foodie planners, etc. but no planners out in the market that was specifically targeted for moms.  They realized that their schedules often got mixed up as the moms are typically busy and often lose time for themselves.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Responsible Milk Sharing

Sometime ago, I shared a program of UP-PGH Milk Bank - Operation Foster Milk and a human milk sharing page on Facebook known as Human Milk for Human Babies - The Philippines.  Advocates have been divided and have mixed reactions to this informal milk sharing.

Donor moms are receptive to the idea of having donee-moms get the milk directly from them while moms who are looking for breastmilk usually find it difficult to get pasteurized milk from human milk banks and find the informal milk sharing network more accessible.

I was a donor to both milk banks and individual moms at the height of my milk-making career.  I donated to PCMC (a representative from the bank picked it up) and UP-PGH (I had to drop off the milk) and to individual moms who pick-up the milk from my place.  Honestly, I preferred to donate milk to individual moms as they do so at my own convenience e.g. they bring their own coolers and pick-up from my place.  Whereas donating to UP-PGH was so cumbersome since I had to pack up the milk in the cooler, look for parking, pay for parking and bring the milk up - with their elevators usually jampacked.  Although now,  PGH has volunteers to pick-up the milk upon schedule. Plus, the thank you that you receive from individual moms is much more satisfying.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Caleb's Closet Giveaway

For this week, our giveaway is a yellow Charlie Banana cloth diaper, hosted by Caleb's Closet Ecostore. we will be having a cloth diaper giveaway.  

Caleb's Closet Ecostore is owned by Dr. Lei, who used to be a barrio doctor in a remote Palawan island!  She was lured to the big city by her husband, who married her on a pristine white beach.  Dr. Lei is currently on hiatus from medical practice as she focuses on raising their little boy - Caleb.  Eventually, Dr. Lei dreams of doing eye surgeries but enjoys her time with her growing baby nowadays.  

Monday, November 21, 2011

Guest Posts and Giveaways

As we get closer to ER's birthday, I'm scheduling blog posts and giveaways to keep this blog alive while I hibernate and enjoy my baby.  During my April vacation, I asked for guest posts and I am again doing so this time.  I also take this opportunity to invite mompreneurs with relevant business to host giveaways on this blog.  

Friday, November 18, 2011

PSA: "The Mother's Way", a Pilgrimage of Mothers and Mothers-to-Be

The Our Lady of La Leche Movement invites you to pay tribute to Our Lady of La Leche Y Buen Parto (Our Lady of Milk and Safe Delivery), Patroness of Mothers and Mothers-to-Be.

We call especially on all:
Pregnant Moms to pray for safe delivery
New and Breastfeeding Moms as thanksgiving and to pray for strength
Those Trying to Conceive to pray for the gift of a child

Spouses/Family/Friends/Support System are welcome!

Pilgrimage tour is on December 10, 2011, Saturday, and starts at 7am with a mass at St. Francis Church in Mandaluyong (near Shangrila Edsa). We will takeoff right after the mass. We will be visiting several locations in Metro Manila that have the image of Our Lady of La Leche, including the original antique image whose age is undetermined. We will end back at St Francis at around 1pm.

To cover transportation, snacks and lunch, pilgrimage free is P900. Any proceeds will be used to donate images of Our Lady of La Leche to more churches and hospitals.

We will be having a physician and lactation counsellor on board for free consultations.

Don't miss this chance to ask for Our Lady's intercession, and to make her known
to other mothers. Slots are limited, so please send a personal message to Bianca
Atienza-Gutierrez to make reservations.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Legal Rights of Breastfeeding Mothers

For the last LATCH training, Sylvia asked me to prepare a presentation on the relevant Philippine laws on breastfeeding. I decided to create a presentation on the Legal Rights of Breastfeeding Mothers.  This was supposed to be presented during the last lecture day of the Batch 3 peer counselors training.  However, due to lack of time, it was postponed and instead was presented during the graduation.
I'm sharing this presentation on the blog in hopes that more moms become aware of their rights AND the violations being blatantly perpetuated through TV ads, store promotions and supermarket giveaways.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Motherlove Giveaway

We have 2 winners!!

Congratulations to Sunshine Rose de Guzman for winning the Mommy Pack

and to Roxanne San Buenaventura for winning the Baby Pack!

Please check your emails
As we are getting closer to Christmas, I've been lucky to have enough sponsors for me to host giveaways every 2 weeks!  For this week, our sponsor is Hatch & Latch, one of my blog sponsors.  Hatch & Latch has a wide variety of items for the pregnant and new mom.  For this giveaway, Helen, the owner would like to feature her top product - Motherlove.  Motherlove was founded a little over 20 years ago and is dedicated to "crafting only the finest, purest products, and using certified organic ingredients designed to nurture, soothe and heal women on their all-important journey of nurturing life."  Helen has prepared 2 prizes - a Mommy Pack and a Baby Pack and we will be having 2 lucky winners!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

My Budding Chef

Welcome to the November Carnival of Natural Parenting: Kids in the Kitchen
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants have shared how kids get involved in cooking and feeding. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

at The Culinary Workshop
learning how to measure
I'm no cook and I am definitely happy (and lucky) that we have helpers where I live.  I sent my 2 helpers to various cooking classes and they can now whip up an excellent paella, a complete japanese and korean dinner, thai meals and can follow various recipes by the book.  But what makes me happier is they allow my little budding chef, N to work with them in the kitchen.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Barriers/Myths vs. Extended Breastfeeding

Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (November). For this month, participants share their experiences on extended breastfeeding. This includes tips to moms with young babies, as well as barriers and myths which discourage extended nursing. Please scroll down to the end of this post and check out the other carnival participants.

My daughter, N, weaned at 3 years and 5 months. If you read my early days in breastfeeding, I wouldn't have thought that we would go beyond 2 years of nursing! I've previously shared about the challenges and the highs and lows I had in nursing a toddler. For this carnival, let me focus on the myths and barriers against extended breastfeeding faced by moms.

Monday, October 31, 2011

OT: It's a Quirks Marketing Warehouse Sale!

Perfect way to start your Christmas Shopping!!

Save the date and stock up!  It will be on November 12, 2011 at Atlanta Centre, Annapolis St., Greenhills, San Juan.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Sunshine Babies Boutique Giveaway

We have a winner!!
Please check your inbox!  Thanks for joining!

My blog sponsor, Sunshine Babies is hosting a giveaway!  The store owner, Em, recently got accredited as a LATCH peer counselor and to celebrate, she is giving away a Nursing Mom gift set which includes 1 BabyBond and 1 MilkBand to 1 lucky mom!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Join the November Milk Mama Diaries Carnival

Ok, so I have been remiss in my duties! This blog carnival was supposed to be in October but with baby on the way, things got crazy and with Mec's permission, I'm moving the carnival to November! :D

So our topic for this month would be extended breastfeeding. Participants are asked to share their experiences with breastfeeding their toddlers (past 12 months old) as well as their tips to moms with young babies. Participants can also talk about barriers to extended breastfeeding which includes myths or comments they received from people around them.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Mothering Earthlings Feature

I'd like to welcome my newest blog sponsor, Mothering Earthlings.
This online store is run by one of the quirkiest blogger around - Rone Guerrero who maintains a really fun blog and tweets as Earthlings Mama.  The blog chronicles the crazy antics of her 2 earthlings and how she manages to cope with them.
N had this onesie!
She also maintains the online store Mothering Earthlings with a counterpart international store focused on bringing together various unique Filipino brands and making it easy for moms to shop for their own earthlings. The store also carries well-loved mommy brands such as Next9, Nursingmom, Indigo Baby and Mommy Matters.
But what makes this store stand-out would be their line of Earthling Gear! Currently, Mothering Earthlings is the sole retailer of my favorite baby clothing brand - Agoo Baby - alternative and edgy apparel for newborns and infants.  Aside from that, the store also has one-of-a-kind baby clothing from Azatri,  googoo&gaga and Planet Baby.
Still pregnant? Don't forget to sign up for the store's baby registry and you definitely won't be disappointed with the gifts you'll be getting for your baby.
Rone plans to bring more interesting Filipino brands to her store.  So don't forget to like Mothering Earthlings on Facebook and keep updated with the newest brand!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Naming Spider

Sometime during my 24th week, we finally got confirmation that our Flower was really a Spider!  We hadn't really started looking for a name but with the gender now confirmed, it was time to start shopping.  My first-born's name actually came from America's Next Top Model - Cycle 2.  Stan was watching re-runs during my entire pregnancy and we had been choosing names from various contestants across cycles.  I think our choice of "Naima" was quite fortuitous, with me ending up authoring this blog (if you read my header, you'll know why!)!  "Naima" is actually an Arabian/African name which means tranquil, graceful, to be contented. We paired it with a mainstream name chosen by my sister - which meant clear, bright, famous.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Guest Post: Nurturing Future Breastfeeding Advocates

*This is a guest post written by one of the LATCH co-founders, Corinne Medrana.  She wrote this post for a  the talk she gave during the SM Baby Company Event, entitled Nourish with Love. Breastfeeding. last 27 August 2011.  Since writing this post, Cor found that she is pregnant with her 5th child!  Congratulations Cor on your dragon baby ;)

Good afternoon, my name is Corinne Medrana and as co-founder of LATCH I’ve been invited to share my reasons for choosing to make a difference in my children’s lives by deciding to breastfeed. To be honest, it was not a difficult decision for me to make because I’m fortunate enough to be among the moms for whom breastfeeding is easy, it came naturally to me and my firstborn, Enzo who is now 10 ½ years old. I don’t remember struggling with teaching him to latch correctly and I didn’t have insecurities about the quantity of my breastmilk because my milk production came in quite quickly. I do recall though that I so looked forward to every moment I could be with him knowing that it was from me and me alone that he could get his nourishment. He had to remain in the nursery for a few days even after I was discharged because he was under observation for an infection he had due to a very long labor, and as a result I had to pump and store my milk for the week that he was left in the hospital. I would go back and forth from home to the hospital every 3 hours during the day to nurse directly and leave my stored milk for the night. I recall knowing that he was hungry because even in the car on the way to the hospital I would feel my breasts filling up in anticipation of the baby I would be nursing in a few minutes. It amazed me to experience this kind of connection with him even if we were physically apart. The bond we shared was so strong and immediate and the brief time apart was compensated for because of the closeness brought by my breastfeeding Enzo.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

In the midst of LATCH Training

We are currently in the midst of the LATCH Training for Batch 3 peer counselors who have completed 3 session days. There will be 1 more session in October plus a graduation and mixer for the 3 different batches. It was my first time to meet all of the participants 2 Mondays ago - although I know some of them and some are readers of this blog. I was quite excited that LATCH was finally able to set, schedule and execute a training session for 2011. There is really a dearth of peer counselors and as volunteer peer counselor moms, our "warm line" Jen has had to deal with several days of silence whenever she refers inquiries and requests for counseling. Plus, there have been several organizations, groups and events that have been tapping LATCH to conduct talks, activities and seminars on breastfeeding.
check out the messages
breastfeeding advocacy cupcakes

Friday, October 7, 2011

Dwell Studio Stamp Set

In late August, N got an unexpected gift of a Dwell Studio Zoo Animals stamp set.  It came in a pine box with 2 ink pads, several pencils plus about 6 stamps.  My crafty little girl loves it and has been using it to make greeting cards for relatives, friends and classmates!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Calling for Formula and Breastmilk Donations during Emergencies

Yesterday, I was offline most of the day because I attended a Breastfeeding Congress in Tagaytay.  Apparently, Twitter got busy with tweets from various individuals calling for formula milk donations (yikes!) and breastmilk donations.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Our Lady of La Leche

October is the month of the feast day of Our Lady of La Leche.  I first heard about Our Lady of La Leche when it was featured in the Inquirer two years ago.  I haven't exactly become a devotee but have become more aware of her because of her connection with breastfeeding.  Also, fellow advocate Claire (and Batch 3 peer counselor trainee) is quite active in identifying where the various images are enshrined.  In fact, she has collected several photographs of Our Lady which I'm sharing with her permission below:

Monday, September 26, 2011

Famealy Day

Today is Lucky Me's National FaMEALy Day - which is the perfect time to publish this post which has been languishing in my drafts folder for 2 months now.

Sometime in July, N's school invited Mr. Francis Kong to talk about the importance of dining together as a family. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

Sunshine Babies

If you haven't noticed yet, I have another new blog sponsor!  I'd like to extend a welcome to Sunshine Babies Boutique, one of my blog sponsors for September.
Sunshine Babies Boutique is owned by Em Malana, a mom of 2 who singlehandedly runs and manages the boutique.  Em launched her store when her interest in cloth diapers was piqued during her pregnancy with her second baby, Sophia.  She fell in love with the variety of cloth diapers available abroad and discovered that most of the shops she patronized were started and run by moms!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Guest Post: Breastfeeding: PURE and PERSONAL

I'd like to share this testimonial written and delivered by LATCH President Buding Aquino-Dee for an SM Baby Company Event, entitled Nourish with Love. Breastfeed. last 27 August 2011.  It is such a beautiful and heartfelt piece which explains how and why she became the breastfeeding advocate that she is today.  Buding is the creator of several brands such as Blissful Babes, Saya, Corsierre, Eden, among others and hopes to inspire others with her own breastfeeding experiences.

HI! My name is Buding Aquino-Dee, I am a nursing mother and I am so thankful for this opportunity for me to share my breastfeeding testimonial. I am the president and co-founder of LATCH and usually, we are asked to teach about breastfeeding, latching and positioning or counsel breastfeeding mothers but today, I have the task of sharing with you my thoughts… story…pure and personal :-) I am warning you…medyo malamim ito…lol!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Formula Marketing at the Manila Book Fair

It's time for the Manila Book Fair once again - and this reminded of a post about last year's event that I had been meaning to do!  One of the side events during the Manila Book Fair is Super Kids 2011.  Last year was the first time that I had heard of it so I was quite excited when I saw the flier promoting the event and the description of the event, especially when I read about the special feature pavilions.
SUPER KIDS FAIR is an active learning experience that will empower young children through diverse opportunities that will leave both the young and young-at-heart blown away. The Fair also boasts of a host of special learning sessions, workshops and cool activities that will equip parents, guardians, educators and adults with the latest in child care and development, parenting, education and others. Special feature pavilions like "Toys Galore", "Kraftsville" and "Glam Up" are expected to draw interest among visitors
while stage presentations such as "Kids Got Talent" will add fun, thrill and excitement to the event.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

WikiLeaks Cable on the US Lobby Against Breastfeeding

photo from
Last weekend, several people tagged me in this news report about a Wikileaks cable that the US Embassy lobbied against breastfeeding in the Philippines.  This was actually not something new.  In fact, during the height of the Supreme Court case on the Revised Implementing Rules and Regulations (RIRR), there were news reports about the American Chamber of Commerce calling then President Arroyo's attention to the RIRR of the Milk Code.   The AmCham stated that the Philippines' reputation as a stable and viable destination for investment would be at risk should the RIRR be signed and implemented.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Arugaan needs your help!

Arugaan, a mother support community, currently has a project with WHO, DOH and they need your help!!  This is an offshoot of the DOH Breastfeeding TSEK Program and Arugaan is tasked with the
training of breastfeeding peer counselors for TSEK Exclusive Breastfeeding or Gumagabay sa Nanay sa Tamang Pagpapasuso.

What is the reason for the TSEK campaign?  Exclusive breastfeeding rates in the Philippines are at a dismal low of 34% (for babies 0-6months) and a lot of moms give their infants water.  Even if moms just eliminate the water, exclusive breastfeeding rates will actually increase.  Research shows that 1 out of 4 Filipino kids are malnourished.  Studies have shown that malnourished kids are usually those who started with being bottlefed.  If moms choose to exclusively breastfeed their babies, then rates of malnourished children will definitely decrease.  Malnourishment is seen to be a chain of events which starts with the wrong feeding practices at infancy.  TSEK seeks to curb malnutrition by promoting and increasing breastfeeding rates in this country.

listening to the lectures
Basically, Arugaan will train and mentor selected peer counselors from key cities to be knowledgeable in the art and skills of breastfeeding counseling in their respective communities for sustainability.  Target reach is 32 cities in the Philippines and since starting in May 2011, Arugraan has already trained more than 1,600 peer counselors in Navotas, Mandaluyong, Quezon City, Marikina, Pasig, Caloocan and Taguig!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

It's a Back to Back Weekend!

If you haven't heard yet, there are several exciting activities coming up in the remaining September weekends!

September 10, 2011 will be the start of the much awaited 2-day Warehouse Sale Part 2.

Some of your favorite mommy brands need to clear out their inventory and you'll get a chance to shop at great discounts!  See the Facebook event page for more details. Don't forget to print out the flier to be allowed entry into the complex.

Meanwhile, La Leche League Manila will be having its monthly Ortigas support group meeting this Saturday 1030am, 10 September 2011 at Baby Company, Podium.  You can find more about La Leche League Manila at their Facebook page.  Read here to find out what to expect during La Leche League meetings. If you want to join, please register through 09178292268.

The Medela House is also holding a full day's worth of classes this Saturday.  There will be a Yaya Seminar on Toddler Care from 9-11am with topics focused on feeding, bathing, dressing, sleeping, playing, keeping toddlers safe, caring for toddler toys and food preparation.  There is a fee for this seminar (from P400-P600 depending on how many participants are joining and whether you are a MedelaMoms' Pump customer).
For those looking for breastfeeding classes, it will be Breastfeeding 101 from 130pm with topics on the basics, advantages, tips, early troubleshooting.  If you joined last August's baby shower, this class is free for you.  Otherwise, there is a fee of P500 which entitles you to attend Breastfeeding 102 and 103.  For more details, email MedelaMoms or text 0917-5614366.  Medela House is located at 29 1st St. New Manila, Quezon City.

On September 24, 2011, we will be having Babywearing 3 - with the manufacturers/distributors of Next9 Ring Slings and Pouches, Saya Baby Carrier, Maya Wrap, Indigo Baby Pouch and Bosom Buddy Slings.  The activity will be held at Gymboree Shangri-La at 4pm.  The event is free but pre-registration is required and slots are limited.  There will be a brief talk on the history of babywearing plus the different types of carriers then the participants can ask each individual resource person for help/instructions on how to properly use a particular carrier.  Head on over to The Painter's Wife for more details.

Got anymore September activities you'd like to share? Drop me a line!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

STEP UP for Breastfeeding

Did you know that the Implementing Rules and Regulations of Republic Act No. 10028 or the Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act of 2009 has been signed last 22 August 2011?  You can download a copy here.  The IRR was published on 28 August 2011 and will be effective on 12 September 2011.  This means that establishments are now required to have lactation stations and workplaces must set up their lactation programs!

After the successful launch of the Breastfeeding Welcome Here Program, UNICEF, WHO, DOLE, DOH and ILO has another exciting project in the works! Remember my series of posts on setting up a workplace lactation program? Well, the consortium has made things even more easier with their S.T.E.P. Up for Breastfeeding Program!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Blog Giveaway: Butterfly Twists - Super Shoes for Super Moms!


We have a winner!!

Congratulations to Rachel Anne Del Rosario!  Please check your email.  Thanks to everyone for joining! Next contest in mid-October ;)

A couple of weeks ago, Trina, Stan's high school friend contacted me about hosting a giveaway on the blog for Butterfly Twists - rollable, twistable, foldable shoes that you can pop in your bag and take with you anywhere.  But before sharing the giveaway, let me share with you Trina's own breastfeeding story about nursing her now 3-year-old son (this is a breastfeeding blog after all! ;D).

Trina was able to give her son breastmilk for 1 year despite leading a hectic lifestyle.  She wasn't able to produce a lot of milk but she made it a point to express milk on both sides after she directly fed to save for rainy days. A few weeks after giving birth, Trina went back to work and teaching (once a week in fashion school).  Barely two months post-partum, she had to attend a wedding in Boracay where she was the maid of honor.  Then at four months post-partum, she and her husband took a 2-week vacation in Australia.  Did these hinder her milk expression times? No - in fact she successfully expressed milk every 3 hours and brought the milk home for her son.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Money Matters for Kids

As a working mom, one of the top traits I want my daughter to learn is frugality and knowing the value of money. We have started her on a piggy bank account - actually a teddy bear bank - where Stan or I give her a coin every day and she saves it up in the teddy bear bank. Whenever she tells me she wants to buy something, I ask her do you have enough saved in your teddy bear bank? And then she stops and thinks about it and says, Okay mommy, I will save up some more. I hope this will help her understand that money does not grow on trees.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Join LATCH's Peer Counselor Training

The much awaited Batch 3 Training is now pushing through!

LATCH is holding its Peer Counselor Training and limited slots are available.  Participants must attend all the sessions from 8am – 1230pm on the following dates to complete the training:

Wednesday, September 21
Monday, September 26
Wednesday, October 5 
Wednesday, October 12

The training will be conducted at 4th Floor Conference Room, The Medical City, Meralco Ave. Pasig City.  There is a fee of P1,500 to cover 4 days of snacks and lunch plus materials. 

All participants must :
1) have breastfed a child for at least a year
2)  be passionate about breastfeeding
3)  committed to volunteering at least 3 Saturday mornings in 2012 to teach in TMC
4)  must commit time and talent in August 2012 Breastfeeding Month projects
5)  willing to teach others about breastfeeding and speak publicly

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Hatch & Latch

I just want to welcome my newest blog sponsor - Hatch & Latch.

Hatch & Latch was started by Helen See, a breastfeeding mom who was frustrated with the limited products available locally for nursing moms. She decided to bring in the brands and products that she used and found helpful.

Just some of the ways you can wear the convertible dress
Her brands include Maternalove, a nursing wear brand from Singapore with a fabulous convertible dress - allowing moms to wear the dress in 10 different ways from maternity to nursing. I already purchased one in blue! Helen also brought in Motherlove, an organic herbal company specializing in breastfeeding supplements that help increase breastmilk. Prices are reasonable. I previously had a blog giveaway for the nipple cream where I shared that I bought the More Milk Special Blend in Hong Kong for HKD$390. The same product is locally available for Php1,950. Other products include the NiNi Toy Bungee and MilkBands Nursing Bracelet. Their newest product is the Bellybuds which allows mom to share the benefits of prenatal music with the baby.
Do check out the Hatch & Latch website and Facebook page today!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Excess Lipase in Breastmilk

Every breastfeeding mom's nightmare is throwing out her breastmilk.  These past few months I've received several emails and texts from moms complaining about how their babies don't like to drink their expressed milk.  The culprit? Excess Lipase.

What is lipase?  Kellymom has a comprehensive explanation on what it is:
A few mothers find that their refrigerated or frozen milk begins to smell or taste soapy, sour, or even rancid soon after it's stored, even though all storage guidelines have been followed closely. Per Lawrence & Lawrence (p. 781), the speculation is that these mothers have an excess of the enzyme lipase in their milk, which begins to break down the milk fat soon after the milk is expressed. Most babies do not mind a mild change in taste, and the milk is not harmful, but the stronger the taste the more likely that baby will reject it.
Lipase is an enzyme that is normally present in human milk and has several known beneficial functions:
  • Lipases help keep milk fat well-mixed (emulsified) with the "whey" portion of the milk, and also keep the fat globules small so that they are easily digestible (Lawrence & Lawrence, p. 156).
  • Lipases also help to break down fats in the milk, so that fat soluble nutrients (vitamins A & D, for example) and free fatty acids (which help to protect baby from illness) are easily available to baby (Lawrence & Lawrence, p. 156).
  • The primary lipase in human milk, bile salt-stimulated lipase (BSSL), "has been found to be the major factor inactivating protozoans" (Lawrence & Lawrence, p. 203).
Per Lawrence & Lawrence (p. 158), the amount of BSSL in a particular mother's milk does not vary during a feed, and is not different at different times of day or different stages of lactation. There is evidence that there may be a decrease in lipase activity over time in mothers who are malnourished.
My own breastmilk was also high in the lipase enzyme.  We noticed that when stored in the refrigerator, N didn't have any problems taking it.  But when the milk was frozen then thawed, the milk smelled soapy.  Luckily, I had enough refrigerated milk to last N the week and all of my frozen milk got donated and pasteurized.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Effective Communication Bucket List

"Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (August). For this month, we join the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action in it's "Talk to Me!" theme where participants will share personal experiences, insights or recommendations in communicating breastfeeding intentions and goals to their support system. Please scroll down to the end of this post and check out the other carnival participants."

Here's my bucket list of how you can be able to effectively communicate your breastfeeding intentions and goals to your support system.

I have found that having done my own research ahead of time helps me become more confident in letting people know that I intend to breastfeed without supplements. Other breastfeeding moms have also shared to me that being knowledgeable about the benefits, problem resolutions, issues surrounding breastfeeding have made them steadfast in their beliefs and allow them to properly address the concerns raised by people around them who are encouraging the use of breastmilk substitutes.
But it is important that you get information from the correct resources. I previously shared the top books in my breastfeeding library and would like to add one more to this list - Bestfeeding by Mary Renfrew. It is currently on my nightstand and I like the way it explains and encourages breastfeeding. Review coming soon. If you don't want to buy books, go for online resources such as Kellymom, Dr. Jack Newman, La Leche League International. Again, let me reiterate - better informed = better armed!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Breastfeeding Welcome Here!

Check out these 2 excellent programs which just launched in August!  Promoting breastfeeding anywhere, the DOH Breastfeeding Check and Breastfeeding Philippines launched their respective "Breastfeeding Welcome Here" signs!
Taken from Nanay Nona's Facebook Page
Breastfeeding Philippines' Nanay Nona, Dr. Elvira Henares and Ms. Chiqui Mabanta at Corner Tree Cafe
Taken from DOH Breastfeeding TSEK Facebook Page
Establishments can choose to get the signs either from Breastfeeding Philippines or the Breastfeeding Welcome Here Secretariat.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

PSA: Run for Sofia Ysabel

I received an email from Kit Cayetano about 2 weeks ako. Kit is a nursing mom of a 10-month old and wanted to share the story of her friend's baby, Sofia Ysabel, who passed away due to coronary heart disease on July 23. You can read about her story here. Sofia's mom had been expressing milk for her ever since she was born.

Before Sofia passed on, the family's runner friends organized a run for Sofia on August 27, 2011. The family has decided that the run will push through even if Sofia has passed on.
You can read about the details of the run HERE and sign up HERE. Registration is P500 and the run will be held at Venice Piazza in McKinley Hill. According to Kit, they are still identifying a beneficiary for the run. I was just reminded of so many other children with heart conditions that can be considered, namely: Anya, Chip, Lysander and Chino.
With about 2 weeks left before the event, I am not sure if they've met the 1000 runners mark. So do sign up! It's for a good cause :D

*Update - Chip passed away on August 11, 2011 and his family have decided to stop all collection efforts. Let us pray for him and his family.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

LATCH Celebrates Breastfeeding Month!

It is a very busy month for LATCH as we celebrate Breastfeeding Month!!

First up is our campaign for August: Give Life, Live Life, Breastfeed!
Among the booby traps to breastfeeding is that new moms think that if they breastfeeding, they'll be stuck to their babies, at home and their partners have no way of helping them.  This campaign seeks to disprove this trap and in fact, breastfeeding not only gives life to your nurslings but allow the moms to live life to the fullest!
How? Well, check out LATCH's spread in The Working Mom Magazine's August issue!
Photos by Karen Ilagan for LATCH and Working Mom Magazine
Breastfeeding allows mom to have a "portable baby," ready for shopping, church, travel, dinner or lunch out with friends without mom having to worry about where to get clean water, where to wash bottles, did she pack enough formula for the day, etc. etc.?  Again, breastfeeding not only lets moms give life to their babies but also allows them to live their life!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Join the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival for August

Since August is Breastfeeding Month, we decided to have a special Milk Mama Diaries Carnival and adopt the theme of World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA):  Talk to me! Breastfeeding - a 3D Experience" on a more personal level.

Locally, our own Department of Health's National Center for Health Promotion has the theme "Breastfeeding: Talk and TSEK" which will be launched tomorrow, 8 August 2011.  So for this month's carnival,  we will focus on communication, as the third dimension in breastfeeding support. We are asking participants to share about how they communicated their desire to breastfeed and/or breastfeeding goals to their support system.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

A Happily Ever After Story

*This is not a parenting or breastfeeding related post! :D

Last Wednesday, I coerced Stan to drive me and we braved Juaning to attend the book launch of Samantha Sotto-Yambao's Before Ever After.  Thanks to OCMominManila, we were lucky to be able to meet her at Cibo, Glorietta 4 before the crazy launch in National Bookstore in Glorietta 5.
photo from Manilamommy
Talk about 6 degrees of separation.  Turns out that Sam was married to The Painter's Wife's college friend who was the brother of my college coursemate!  Anyway, being the good students that we were, Manilamommy and I had finished the book before the coffee meet-up AND had a list of questions we wanted to ask Sam.

Monday, August 1, 2011

August is Breastfeeding Month!

It's August once again and it's time for Breastfeeding Month and there are a variety of activities scheduled to suit everyone.

First, let's talk about shopping!
L.A.T.C.H. will be a co-sponsor of this event and if you attended this event last year, you'd be sure to remember our Singing Bee-nefits Game, hosted by Buding!  And of course, since this is an "open" bazaar, you can be sure to see all your favorite nursing brands and stores - such as Mama.Baby.Love (my online store :D), Mamaway, Eden, Mothers En Vogue, Mommy Matters, Mama Au Lait and Maternalove.

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