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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Quick Guide to Breastfeeding Challenges

Sorry, sorry... life has caught up with me! I really haven't been blogging much as I've been focusing on my day job, kids, Mama.Baby.Love and replying to email/text questions of breastfeeding/babywearing/cloth diapering moms.  I'm cleaning out my draft posts (yes, I have numerous!!)  and I found this post which I initially wrote as a comment to another page.  I can't remember if this comment was published -- yes it has been that long!  So I decided to edit it a publish it in my blog.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

B is for...

Busy Blessings

I know I have been silent for some time... and that's because I've recently received a blessing in my life.  I landed a new job!  It is a totally different field from where I was with before.  I'm in a new environment, new colleagues - and that explains my silence.  I still love to talk about breastfeeding and if you follow me over at Facebook, you'll know that I have a lot to say about it.  I'm slowly getting the pace and feel of my day job and hopefully, I'll be able to write more often.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Guest Post: Sourcing Breastmilk for an Adopted Baby

Remember early this year when I posted about a milk sharing story about adoptive dads who sourced breastmilk for their baby?  This time, I am sharing a story closer to home.  Today's guest post is from Jason Baker of PETA Asia Pacific.  A friend of Jason posted in one of my egroups about how he was looking for breastmilk for his adopted son.  Super small world, I patched him up with a kababayan from Davao City and Pangging became a regular milk donor.   Jason shared this story with me almost a year ago and I wasn't able to share it until now.
Why did I decide to share?  Since it is breastfeeding month, I've been seeing a lot of stories about breastfeeding in various news outfits. However, I was greatly saddened when a popular site shared a story about a mom saying that breastfeeding advocates condemn formula feeding moms.  She goes on to say that counselors live in posh villages, that formula milk is good enough for her child, that it is impossible for a working mom to commute and bring all her breastfeeding paraphernalia.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Milk Mama Diaries: Experiencing the One Asia Breastfeeding Forum

Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (August). For this month, we write about the World Breastfeeding Week 2014 - Breastfeeding: A Winning Goal for Life and share how breastfeeding can help the Philippines achieve the 8 Millennium Development Goals developed by the government and the United Nations. Participants will share their thoughts, experiences, hopes and suggestions on the topic. 

Please scroll down to the end of the post to see the list of carnival entries. 

This is a much delayed post! I've been writing it for several months now but was not able to finish.  I finally found the drive to complete it in time for Milk Mama Diaries Carnival.  I feel that this post will help me explain the relationship of breastfeeding with the 8th Millennium Development Goal - Global Partnership.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Milk Mama Diaries Carnival: Breastfeeding, A Winning Goal for Life!

I can't believe that it has been almost 2 years since our last Milk Mama Diaries blog carnival!  My co-host Mec (Mec as Mom) and I have been busy and not been able to regularly host the carnival.   However, with the prodding of our breastfriend, breastfeeding diva Velvet Escario-Roxas, we decided to revive the carnival this month to help the public understand more about this year's World Breastfeeding Week 2014 theme:  Breastfeeding, A Winning Goal For Life!

This year's theme refers to the 8 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) which were set by governments and the United Nations way back in 1990.  These goals aim to fight poverty and promote healthy and sustainable development by 2015.   WABA would like to emphasize the importance of increasing and sustaining the protection, promotion and support of breastfeeding post-2015.   Likewise, by protecting, promoting and supporting breastfeeding, YOU can contribute to each of the MDGs in a substantial way.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Breastfeeding Month Giveaway from The Marshmallow Baby Online Shop

Lawyers are jacks of all trades! In fact, a lot of my lawyer friends are now veering away from traditional lawfirm practice.  Most are in alternative lawyering, business, photography, government, environment, surfing, blogging, etc.  I'm one example - from focusing on pleadings, opinions, my time is now on my business, family and promoting, supporting and protecting breastfeeding, particularly the implementation of the Milk Code.

I recently met another lawyer who has a successful second career.  Tina de Guzman, a development professional and lawyer, works in an NGO implementing judicial reform, human rights and anti-trafficking programs.  Together with her husband Reindl, they set up "Fluffy Pwets," the first ever hybrid fitted diapers in the country.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Money Matters for Kids is back!

Three years ago, I took N to an exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila to jumpstart her financial education.  I wrote about our experience here.  N was about 3.5 years old then and admittedly, she wasn't mature enough to fully appreciate the activity.  I wanted to bring her back when she was a bit older but there wasn't any there scheduled exhibit until this year.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Activities for August Breastfeeding Month

Breastfeeding Awareness Month is happening next week!  As always, it is packed with activities to promote, support and protect breastfeeding and further the breastfeeding advocacy.  Let me start with L.A.T.C.H.'s big event this August -- Breastfeeding Uncovered 2014: Mission Possible.  LATCH has expanded to Cebu and Davao cities and we decided to bring back Dr. Jack Newman to visit 3 major cities in the Philippines.
His first visit last year was well-attended and with the release of his new book, we hope that more healthcare workers, breastfeeding supporters and breastfeeding mothers can hear him speak.   

Monday, July 21, 2014

The Second Night

I was able to sign-up for ilactation's Heart-to-Heart Online conference earlier this year.  Learning about breastfeeding is never-ending.  There are regular researches and updates and I am pretty happy that there are providers which allow advocates like myself to listen and learn online, in the comfort of my own home or while commuting.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Gentle Birth Is Possible - A Public Forum - happening today!

Planning for breastfeeding success starts with planning for your birth.  While I did not have a home birth for my children, I am happy to be part of the Homebirthing group in the Philippines which advocates for informed birth choices available for mothers.   I am alarmed by the increasing rates of caesarian births in the Philippines and even more by mothers who schedule C/S births based on lucky dates, appointments, without any medical indication.  Click here for my learnings from Erik's birth.

Thus, I was happy when Nanay Ines of Arugaan pushed for the creation of a gentle birth public forum and excited to announce that it is happening today in UP Diliman!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Breastfeeding Uncovered 2014: Mission Possible

He's back!  I'm happy to share that due to public demand, L.A.T.C.H. will be bringing Dr. Jack Newman back to the Philippines.  Read my post last year for details on who Dr. Newman is.  

Monday, June 16, 2014

A #BetterMe Make-Up Session with The Painter's Wife

Make-up is not my strongest point.  Save for 1-2 eyebrow pencils, all of my make-up items are given to me as gifts or as part of swag bags.  My mom was not fond of make-up and had the barest minimum and I guess I learned by example.

However, being a professional, I realized the need to learn how to put on make-up.  Did you know that my former boss gifted me a make-up kit (hint! hint! I should start putting make-up more often!) which until now I have never fully utilized?

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Boycott Nestle. Ask me why.

At the One Asia Breastfeeding Partners Forum last year in Luang Prabang, one of the persons I met was Patti Rundall of Baby Milk Action.  Prior to OABPF, I was already a breastfeeding advocate and actively stopped buying Nestle products for my home.  After listening to the speakers about their ideas, insights and experiences, I realise that supporting the Nestle boycott doesn't mean just NOT buying Nestle products for my family but also telling others who ask why we do it.  Every one person that also supports the boycott and stops buying Nestle is a huge boost to this campaign.

If I've piqued your interest, read on after the jump.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Our Tokyo Trip Travel Must-haves!

It has been more than one month since our April trip to Tokyo.  I've been preparing a series of posts about our must-dos and must-visits.  But I also wanted to list down our essentials packing list, hopefully to help families in their own planning and packing, and to serve as a reminder to myself when I prepare for our future trips as well.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Summer with Owl Coffee Philippines

Phew! I'm in the middle of a career change and although I decided not to work full time this summer, I feel as if I am busier than ever.  I realize that ferrying the kids to their summer classes and doing activities with them take up a lot of time.  I know I haven't written a lot for the past couple of months and I hope to make up for this in the 2nd half of 2014 (crossing my fingers!)

Friday, May 9, 2014

Do you use #softhands? Consider Positive Discipline

When we became parents, Stan and I naturally gravitated towards the attachment parenting model.  I realize now that it was also because of how I was parented as a child.  During our recent family trip to Tokyo, my dad shared about how an uncle told him how to parent his family - that he as a parent must be feared by his children - rule by the rod, not by hugs and kisses.  But my dad disagreed.  He believed that we should learn to obey him because we love and respect him and not because we feared him.  So my siblings and I were never lacking for warmth and affection from our parents and for this I am truly grateful.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

A Mother's Day Raffle with Elin

Mother's Day is coming up and I want to do a raffle for readers of this blog to celebrate.  I've had my Elin affiliate link up for about two months now and I am very thankful to my readers for clicking on it whenever they shop at Elin.

As I shared in my previous post, Elin has been my go to brand for chic casual pieces even when they were not yet carrying maternity clothes.  I was really pleased that they included nursing wear in their catalogue, providing classic and affordable pieces for their clients.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

GCDC Philippines' Guinness attempt

Hooray! We qualified for the 2014 Great Cloth Diaper Change Guinness attempt.   This year's event was held at the Blue Leaf Events Pavilion and would not have been successful if not for our partnership with 2 mommy groups - N@W and MCNP.

Thanks to Benz of N@W, we were able to secure a wonderful venue - Blue Leaf's Jade Pavilion!  Incidentally, this Sunday, the Blue Leaf will be hosting "The Big Banquet" - a food-tasting event by the top caterers of Metro Manila.  Click here for tickets.
Photo by Nikz Dizon

Monday, April 14, 2014

Banzai with the SoMoms

I always get excited when there are new restaurants opening in the Mall of Asia complex.  Aside from living near this area, I look forward to the day when I don't need to leave the area and head to Makati or Ortigas to get great meals.  Traffic is getting worse and with the ongoing road reblocking, even weekends are now affected.

I first heard of Banzai early this year from Carina and Jen.  However, I didn't have the chance to drop by to eat because Stan was exceptionally busy during the 1st quarter of the year.  So when Sheryl Laudico, one of the owners, invited the SoMoms on a dining trip to Banzai, there was no way I could refuse!  

Friday, April 4, 2014

Will you join us at the Great Cloth Diaper Change 2014?

I first became involved in Real Diaper Week in 2012 through several small pocket activities.  Last year, we tried to join the Guinness attempt to break the record for the most cloth diapers change.  However, we were not able to register on time and did a commemorative event instead.   This year, we had a longer time to plan and organise.

Together with Next9, TickledMoms and parenting communities N@W and MCNP, we will be joining the Great Cloth Diaper Change on 26 April 2014 and attempt to break the Guinness world record of most cloth diapers changed!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Owl Coffee Now Available in the Philippines

I first encountered Owl Coffee at one of my regular visits to Little Store in Gilmore more than 1 year ago.  I was curious about instant Singaporean coffee.  I've tried the Singaporean style coffee in Ya Kun Kaya and Toast Box but haven't had instant coffee, Singapore style.

I immediately purchased several packs in different varieties - Teh Tarik, Nanyang White Coffee and the Kopi Tiam Roast.  Not bad, not bad at all for instant coffee! I need to have my daily coffee at the office and I was very happy with the wide variety offered by Owl.
so many choices!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Sunday Slowdown at Spiral Manila

Several Sundays ago, N and I were invited to join the Mommy & Me brunch at Spiral Restaurant at Sofitel Manila (Thanks Jackie!).  I had a bazaar that day so I was yaya-less as both my yayas had to set-up for the bazaar.  E had to tag along with Achi and me. Fortunately, he cooperated.

Stan and I spent our last anniversary at Spiral Manila.  I also purchased an Accor Advantage card early this year and in fact, we will be celebrating N's graduation at Spiral this week.   Thus, when we received the invitation from Blessy and Jane of Sofitel's E-commerce group, I immediately said yes and brought both kids along.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Join the Nurture Run for Breastfeeding + Giveaway

Last week, I attended the Bloggers for Breastfeeding event at Recess by Chef Chris.  The event was to promote the upcoming run for breastfeeding - Nurture Run 2014 spearheaded by Beauty Brains and Breastfeeding.   More details in the poster below:

Monday, March 24, 2014

Help the Arugaan mission for Haiyan victims this April

Posting this for Arugaan:

Last Dec 2013 and Jan 2014, Arugaan with 29 BESTeam (Breastfeeding Experts Support Team) went to 10 municipalities/city in Leyte/Samar areas badly devastated by typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan. We have covered more than 6,000 mothers-babies/young children in more than 200 barangays. We did breastfeeding counseling, breastfeeding empowerment, mother-baby friendly tents, hot meals for the mothers and young children, etc etc.

Friday, March 21, 2014

World Down Syndrome Day

Today is World Down Syndrome Day and I would like to share this beautiful video with you:

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Quick Cooking with Tiger Corporation's Tacook

Tiger has been a part of kitchens in all the households that I have been part of.  When I was a child, growing up in Davao City, I remember my mom's kitchen filled with Tiger appliances.  When buying a hot pot or a rice cooker, my mom always reminded me to buy only the brand Tiger.   My own kitchen has Tiger thermos, a small Tiger rice cooker and various Tiger food and drinks containers.  Even my mother-in-law has Tiger addiction - every trip back from Singapore includes a Tiger product in her luggage.

When I started bringing packed lunch, my first container was the insulated Tiger lunch box.  I also had drinking flasks from Tiger so I could bring my own coffee to the office.  E received this thermal jar which I previously used to bring home taho.  Now, we make our own taho and E uses this flask to keep his taho warm.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

What if your company/employer does not want to follow RA10028?

My employer does not want to provide lactation periods/lactation stations.  What is our recourse as breastfeeding and working mothers?
I have several posts on the rights of breastfeeding mothers who work, how to ask for a lactation policy, what an ideal lactation room looks like, etc. etc.  To read my various posts about breastfeeding, rights and work, click HERE.

My office is currently working on getting the Mother-Baby Friendly Certification - more on that in a separate post.  I'm lucky to have a supportive employer who supported our efforts resulting in the establishment of a lactation policy and lactation room.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Pregnant: How to prepare for breastfeeding

Last month, I received this message on my Facebook page:
I am pregnant with my second baby and really want to successfully breastfeed him coz I failed the first time. Im still on my 17th week though but if I can do something as early as now to prepare myself for that, I'd gladly do so. What can you suggest?
I've been receiving similar concerns via email and private message so I decided to compile some tips which I hope will be useful not only to new moms, but also to moms new to breastfeeding.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Mom Pop Up Goes to Rockwell!

Since the success of last year's Mom Pop Up, we had been after Rone to organize another one.  After months and months of pangungulit, this summer's Mom Pop Up is finally happening on 16 March 2014 at Hidalgo Place, Rockwell, Makati City.

What I especially love about Mom Pop Up is that it is an intimate event at a small location.  Plus, the hours are short - so not too tiring for this part-time mompreneur.  There is a fair number of shops who will be participating.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

LATCH at NNC-NCR's Breastfeeding Forum

In mid-February, I was fortunate to be invited to the National Nutrition Council - NCR's Breastfeeding Forum and Photo Exhibit held at the Kaban ng Hiyas in Mandaluyong City.  I met the NCR's Nutrition Officer Meren Francia through breastfriend Kate Demetrio - also a Nutrition Officer of the NNC.  Meren and I worked closely on the Nanay Bayanihan project so when she asked me to share about the Milk Code, I readily agreed.

The Breastfeeding Photo Exhibit was the showcase of the various projects of 16 cities and 1 municipality covered by NNC-NCR to protect and promote breastfeeding.  Did you know that each of these cities (and municipality have breastfeeding support groups?  The members of the community-based BFSGs now number more than 3,000, resulting in the gradual increase in breastfeeding initiation and exclusive breastfeeding rates in the NCR.

showcase of LGU's breastfeeding activities

Friday, February 28, 2014

Lunch with Cheska Kramer for Cycles Sensitive + Giveaway

It's the last day of the love month and let me end it with another giveaway from Cycles Sensitive.  Cycles Baby has been a part of our life for the past 7 years.  When we had N, we were conscious about the products that we use on her body and her clothes.  My early research showed Cycles Baby laundry detergent to be the mildest product for baby's use - and so we chose that laundry detergent for N's clothes.

Eventually, I was surprised to find out that Eveolution, Inc., the company behind Cycles Baby, is owned by college batchmates - Dennis and Emily.  With 5 kids, they found themselves having had to import products from abroad to suit their sensitive kids.  They decided to expand Cycles Baby and develop a bath and body line to meet their needs - and so, Cycles Sensitive was born.
Cheska with Dennis and Emily

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Bebe Chic Diaper Bag Giveaway

It's time for the long over due Bebe Chic Diaper Bag Giveaway! The owners of Bebe Chic, Catherine and Mike Dy are long time friends who I met during the first bazaar I joined.  As I was going through my draft posts, I realized that Catherine had first asked me to do the giveaway back in May 2012 - almost 2 years ago!  (Sorry Catherine!!)

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Stopover in Seattle

My trips to the US are always synonymous to outlet shopping and this trip is not an exception.  Actually, a trip to Seattle was not in our itinerary.  We were only going to be in Canada for 2 weeks and transferring from one place to another with 2 kids in tow, sans yaya, was something I didn't want to do.  However, since all of Stan's siblings would be traveling to Seattle and we've never been there, we decided to brave the trip, especially since it included a trip to an outlet.

Friday, February 21, 2014

A Nursing Mom's Shopping Guide: ELIN Maternity and Nursing Wear

I am excited to see more and more brands that offer breastfeeding friendly clothing to Filipina mothers.  I had been a fan of Elin when they were still focused on mainstream clothing.  When I found out that one of their partners was going to have a baby, I become more excited because I hoped that a breastfeeding friendly line would follow.  And apparently, I wasn't far off!  They had already expanded into the maternity line because they found out that a lot of their customers were using their clothes as maternity wear because of the comfort and fit.  Naturally, because Martina is breastfeeding (yay!), the nursing line followed.
My favorite Elin top during the launch of
LATCH's Snuggle Wuggle Wee

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Solutions to the Challenging First Week of Breastfeeding

The first few weeks for any new parent is always the toughest.  For breastfeeding moms, these weeks are especially as this can make or break your breastfeeding relationship.  It is really important to surround yourself with breastfeeding supporters.  However, it is equally important to read and research and equip yourself with the information to help you succeed.

I realize that even if the internet is now easily accessible there is so much information out there, such that some new parents get overwhelmed and give up.  Plus, there are also information that come from dubious sources.  So, I decided to compile information which I believe in and find reliable in hopes that new parents can use this guide to gain confidence during the early weeks of breastfeeding their baby.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Painting Her Destiny

I first learned about Nice So when fellow SoMom Tiffany of Breakfast with Tiffany posted pictures of her artwork in our group page.  Tiff also shared that Nice had been diagnosed with lupus.  But instead of feeling sorry for herself, she paints to support her medical treatments.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Marketing of Growing Up Milk

Earlier this week, I shared this article on my social media channels - Breastfeeding is winning! So companies are pushing “toddler milk” to neurotic parents.  I find this article very important to merit its own blog post. One paragraph in the article struck me most:
Often, these drinks contain much higher levels of protein than breast milk or cow’s milk, health advocates say, which undercuts demand for healthy food. “When you drink a lot of formula milk, your appetite is not so good,” Ip said. That makes parents think their kids are picky eaters, she said, which then leads them to feed them more toddlers milk. These companies “are trying to solve problems they are creating,” she said.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Gingersnaps is 20 years old!

If you follow me on Instagram, you might have noticed several recent posts I shared showing N in this floral Gingersnaps outfit.  This outfit was chosen by Stan on occasion of Gingersnaps' 20th year anniversary!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Join LATCH! Batch 5 Recruitment

I can't believe that it has been 2 and a half years since the last LATCH recruitment in Metro Manila!   2013 was particularly a busy year because we organized a symposium with an international speaker - Dr. Jack Newman, no less.  We also published the very first breastfeeding book for kids in the Philippines - Snuggle Wuggle Wee!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Breastfeeding and Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis is a pandemic in the Philippines.  Every other person I know has this and I wouldn't be surprised if ALL Filipinos living in the Philippines has some latent form of the virus in them.  Despite this, it is very disappointing to hear tuberculosis being used as a reason to stop breastfeeding.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Free Alternative Therapy This Saturday!

Shiphrah/Bahay Paanakan is hosting a one-day Bowen Alternative Therapy class. It contains therapy strategies for moms in labor, newborns, breastfeeding problems. It's free this Sat. 9-5 - January 25, 2014. There are two Bowen trainers who are here to help with Yolanda refugees. They came out to Shiphrah just yesterday with Kalpana Gandhi. This will be a teaser for a larger event later this year. For more details, contact Jeri 660-7565 or 0906 209 3965. Shiphrah is in Tanay, Rizal.

Click HERE to learn more about Bowen Alternative Therapy.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Christmas in Whistler

Holidays this year was especially fun because we were able to have a "white Christmas".  Stan's siblings are spread out abroad and his mom turned 70 early this year.  However, we weren't to plan a celebration in time for the actual birthday.  Instead, the family decided to have a belated celebration/reunion.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

LATCH goes to Cebu

One of the more popular questions I get is how to become a breastfeeding peer counselor.  I answered that query here.  However, at that time, there were no specific trainings scheduled yet.  In December, I wrote about the upcoming peer counselor trainings to be conducted by Arugaan in Davao, Cagayan de Oro and Bacolod. Read about that here.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Back to back birthdays!

Happy new year dear readers!  December was a very busy month - with 2 birthdays plus an out of the country trip for my family.  Let me start 2014 with a blog post about N and E's birthdays.  N and E are both December babies - which means that on top of preparing for our Christmas travels and presents, I also have to prepare for their school celebration.

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