Monday, September 30, 2013

Milk Making Machine

The babies are 11 weeks old today, which means I am one week away from reaching my first major breastfeeding goal.  Technically, I haven't actually breastfed in several weeks, though the trio receives 100% expressed milk.  I'm able to pump around 85-90 oz of breastmilk per day.  (FYI, I did the math and that is roughly 5 gallons of milk a week!)  Each baby drinks 24-28 oz per day.  In addition to feedings, I've been slowly building my freezer stash by adding a 4 oz bag of milk each day. 

My next goal is to provide exclusive breastmilk for 6 months, but I'm not going to stress out about reaching this goal.  If I'm no longer able to provide enough breastmilk, I've got 18 cans of unopened Enfamil waiting to be used (and two more free shipments a mere phone call away.) It was very difficult for me to exclusively breastfeed Jackson for 6 months.  I experienced low supply after returning to work and Jackson was no longer gaining weight between 4-6 months.  (This was likely due to untreated reflux in addition to low milk supply.)  After 6 months, Jackson was exclusively formula fed and he is a smart, healthy toddler.  If James, Amelia, or Madeline need formula, I'm at peace with that.  I've already exceeded my expectations by being able to provide exclusive breastmilk thus far. 

Currently, I don't have any major supply issues, though I have noticed a slight decrease in production since the IUD insertion.  To combat this, I decided to make lactation cookies.  Here's the recipe (courtesy of my sister):  

1 cup crisco/butter/margarine
1/2 C white sugar
1 C brown sugar
2 eggs
2t vanilla extract
1/4t salt
1t baking soda
1/2 C whole wheat flour
3/4 C white flour
3 T brewers yeast
2 T milled flax seed
1/4 C wheat germ
2 C oats (quick or old fashioned)
1 C of chocolate chips/butterscotch/toffee

I had to go to Trader Joe's for some of the ingredients.
Preheat oven to 350.

Combine sugars & butter until smooth.
Add eggs & vanilla, mix well.
Combine all remaining ingredients, excluding oatmeal and chips/toffee until smooth.
Add oatmeal and chips/toffee.

Jackson kept eating the chocolate chips!
Spread onto foil lined, large cookie sheet.

Bake for 15-18 minutes.  Cool and cut into bars.

This recipe makes several dozen cookies
I look forward to nibbling on lactation cookies throughout the day!  No sense worrying about weight until I'm no longer pumping.

In other pumping related news, I finally bought a car adapter so I can pump on the go.  I am so, so excited about this purchase!  I frequently drive 30 minutes or more to visit family or take Jackson on adventures.  I have to feed and change everyone and pump before I can get out the door.  By the time I've done all of that, I only have a two hour window or less before the babies need to eat again.  If I'm away for more than 3-4 hours, I have to lock myself in a bathroom to pump.  Now I can save time by pumping in the car.  

I've pumped in the car before using the battery pack, but the suction isn't as strong and the pump quickly eats through 8 AA batteries.  I still don't own a pumping bra, but I use the hair tie trick and it works just fine. 
"Hands-free Pumping" by Catharine Decker, MD
Cheers for eating cookies, pumping in the car, and feeding my babies!


  1. Elizabeth's mom told me to just cut holes in a sports bra to make my own hands-free-pumping bra; worked great too!

    1. I did that and use the sports bra at home, but not on the go.