A baby’s job is simple: sleep, eat and poop. Since I’ve covered the necessities required for ‘sleep’ in an earlier post, ‘eat’ is up next!
– Breast pump It was a toss-up between the Medela PISA and Freestyle for me, but after speaking to a few mummy friends, I decided on the Freestyle. It has served me well so far and I like its portability and size. Some people prefer a manual pump while others are happy with a single pump, so it is essential that you consider your own needs. The double pump reduces my time spent pumping and if I only need to pump from one side, all I have to do is plug the unused tubing end into the central tubing dock. The manual provides very comprehensive instructions and there are videos on the Medela website to guide you along. C bought mine online from Amazon and because Amazon doesn’t ship certain items directly to Singapore, we had to use a shipping company. Some mummies on the Singapore Motherhood Forum have also bought from this local dealer and they seem quite happy with her service. Don’t take my word for it though, because I don’t know her at all! Just sharing what I’ve read on the forum. 😛
– Disposable breast pads I bought two boxes of 30, from Pigeon. Think they are quite reasonably priced and rather absorbent. More importantly, they are easily available! Just bought a couple more boxes from Spring Maternity at $11.90 a box. Kiddy Palace sells it at the same price too.
– Breast milk storage bottles (glass and plastic) I bought six plastic bottles from Philips Avent on impulse, before realising that bottles are way more expensive than the storage bags and take up a lot more space too. Motherkao also gave me a number of glass storage bottles, so that helped too. Initially, I would pump quite regularly to stimulate my supply, so the storage bottles came in handy. The confinement lady would do a couple of bottle feeds every now and then, so that we could monitor his intake and give me a break at the same time, especially during the initial few days after we returned from the hospital. Now, I prefer to latch him on directly, so if I do pump out any milk, I use the milk storage bags and freeze them instead.
– Milk storage bags Motherkao recommended that I get the Blue Egg storage bags online but she managed to find them at one of the Expo fairs too, from Advanology. My only grouse with the bags is that the measurements on the bag don’t seem to be all that accurate, so I usually write down the quantity on the bag itself, based on my reading from the bottle. But maybe it’s just me…
– Cooler bag The Medela pumps usually come with a cooler bag, so check to see what ‘freebies’ you can get from your selected pump.
– Bottle sterilizer and warmer We bought these from the Takashimaya Fair as they came in a bundle set. Philips Avent seems to be the most popular choice among mothers and we have no problems with them so far. I like that the sterilizer is big enough for six bottles and both are relatively easy to use.
– Bottle organiser/drying stand Aesthetically, we liked this grass patch and bought it from the Taka Fair. We don’t really use it very often now since I latch Noah on directly most of the time, but it is good to use a separate drying rack for baby’s feeding items. I also got a separate sponge and sponge holder just for his feeding items.
– Washing detergent for feeding items The Pigeon liquid cleanser is reasonably priced and easily available at major supermarkets.
– Feeding bottles If you purchase the Medela pump from the official dealers, it comes with a free Medela Calma bottle which supposedly forces the baby to suckle quite hard, as though he is suckling direct from the breast. We tried using the bottle when we first came home and my milk supply wasn’t in yet, but Noah simply refused to suckle from it. We ended up using the Pigeon Peristaltic nipple and bottle and haven’t looked back since.
– Bottle/teat brush Some of the Philips Avent sterilizer and warmer bundles come with a free brush, but ours didn’t. We bought a simple bottle brush from Kiddy Palace that has a detachable smaller brush for teats.
– Nursing bib I love the pretty designs from Pupsik and bought one for myself. However, Dumex has been giving away free nursing bibs with their milk samples too and I now have three nursing bibs, all unused since I haven’t nursed in public yet. Some may prefer using a nursing shawl, which covers the mother’s back as well and is useful if you are not wearing a nursing top.
– Burp cloths We use the diaper cloths from Pigeon or Pureen. Alternatively, you can use a small towel if you prefer.
– Nursing bras I bought a variety of different designs at the Expo Fair and realised that I prefer using those that allow more skin-to-skin contact. I found some very soft and comfortable ones at Spring Maternity the other day, priced quite reasonably at $29.90. Also, the nursing bras without padding work better for me at the moment, as they don’t obstruct baby’s access to me and I just paste on the breast pads to prevent leakages.
– Fenugreek capsules Being a typical Singaporean, I bought a bottle of these, just in case I needed to increase my milk supply. Thank God that I haven’t had to take them yet, but a few friends have done so and found them effective.
– Formula container We got one with three compartments, for practical reasons. Munchkin has very nice and colourful ones!
– Formula for newborns The paediatrician recommended that we get HA powder and we bought a 900g tin of Enfalac HA at the hospital pharmacy. Some supermarkets carry smaller 400g tins, which is more practical, especially if you intend to breastfeed your baby once your milk supply comes in.
– Nipple cream Two of my friends blessed me with their unused tubes of Mustela and Medela nipple cream but also told me that spreading breast milk on sore nipples works better than any nipple cream. Personally, I agree with them and don’t think this is a necessity.
– Nursing pillow A few friends swear by the My Brest Friend nursing pillow and I bought mine at the Taka Fair. Noah is still a little too small-sized for me to be able to go completely handsfree but I’ve recently found that I can use his beansprout pillow to prop his head up just that little bit more, and I have both hands free. Maybe my sore wrists will finally get some relief now!
– Pacifier We still haven’t introduced the pacifier to Noah yet and don’t have any plans to do so at the moment, although we got a free set of pacifiers with the Philips Avent sterilizer bundle.
(To be continued)