Nursing Tuesday: Long Sleeved Nursing Top

We’ve featured a lot of tops like this, with a sort of split up the front that allows you to nurse easily (or pump easily), and while it’s a little casual for most offices, if your office is more on the casual side or if you’re just looking for something to wear during maternity leave, this looks like a good bet. It comes in four colors, has a lot of positive reviews at Amazon, and it’s available for shipping with Prime. Note that the sizes (S-XL) run very small. Bearsland Maternity Autumn Long Sleeved Nursing Top

Psst: Looking for more info about nursing clothes for working moms, or tips for pumping at the office? We’ve got them both…

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  1. I’m two weeks postpartum and still look pregnant. People have asked when I’m due. Nothing fits and I need to get some tops and dresses to take my toddler to the park, zoo, and to just feel like a put together person. Any advice on were to look? I’d rather not get more maternity gear…maybe some swing dresses? I don’t know where to look and am tired. blah.

  2. How hard and fast do you adhere to your daycare’s illness rules? I was surprised when talking to a friend recently who said she just pumps her kids full of tylenol and hopes daycare doesn’t notice. She said basically everyone does this, and my conscientious husband and I are the outliers. I totally get where she’s coming from and it’s crossed my mind on sick days, but I guess our thinking is just karma and we hope others do the same to avoid getting our kid sick. Thoughts?

    • I’ve done this when he’s borderline – fever of 99 or 100 – and I do ibuprofen, not Tylenol since it’s more likely to last through naptime.

      Am I proud of this? No. But I have no backup daycare, and there times when DH and I both have court appearances that can’t be rescheduled.

      • octagon says:

        I do it when borderline, and when it’s likely teething-related as opposed to a bona fide illness. If I suspect that my kid is in any way contagious, we stay home.

    • I understand it, but I don’t like it. I think your friend is correct and many parents fudge the rules, but I’m closer to your end of the spectrum. We’ve made a couple of exceptions to the 24-hour fever rule if a) the fever broke quickly and we’re within a few hours of the “deadline” and b) the kiddo is symptom free and is energetic and acting normal. If they’re in bad enough shape that they need Tylenol to make it through, we keep them at home. I also realize that we’ve been incredibly fortunate to not have a kiddo who is constantly sick, so we have enough sick time to use.

    • Anonymous says:

      I think a lot of people do the Advil and cross their fingers. We don’t, but I have a very flexible position where staying home from work is not usually a hardship. When both husband and I were litigating, I could see where I’d make closer calls for low grade fevers on days where both of us had court dates. I feel fortunate to have the flexibility to stay home with them as needed (they don’t want to be at school when they don’t feel well any more than I want to go to work when I feel badly), but I know a lot of women who aren’t in the same position. I reserve judgment for people who do this who have the means/ability to find alternative care. FWIW, the teachers can totally tell when a kid is sick but has been pumped full of Advil and sent anyway. I know they do resent it (they don’t want to get sick and miss work — usually terrible sick policies for caregivers or get their kids sick).

      • anon. says:

        You are awesome (sincerely.) Thank you! I can’t believe the judgment oozing through here — particularly from those who do it themselves.

    • CPA Lady says:

      Hah, I call it “playing daycare roul3tte”. What I do depends on how sick she seems and what I have going on at work. If she’s basically acting like herself but is a little warn and I have a deadline at work, I’ll do the Advil thing and play daycare roulette. If she’s clearly miserable and burning up, I keep her home another day.

      Also, my husband travels a ton for work and we don’t have any local family, so if she’s sick, it’s pretty much on me– if we both were in town all the time, we’d probably keep her home more often because my husband could help. As it is I have barely any PTO days left while he has like four more weeks of PTO he needs to use by the end of the year, that he’ll get to spend just chilling and doing nothing and actually relaxing (not that I’m jealous… oh wait.)

      • This. My kids tend to run warm, so if they’re at 100 and acting normal, then we do some ibuprofen/tylenol to mask the warmth and play roulette. We both travel quite a bit, and don’t have local family, so there’s nothing more annoying than spending 24 hours with a kid who is clearly fine but hit the magical 101.1 and then was fine 30 minutes later.

        We don’t do it if we have reason to believe they’re actually sick, or if they’re acting “off”, or if there’s a chance they’re contagious. But we can be more cautious on those days because we’re not blowing our PTO on stupid random minor fever days.

    • Anonymous says:

      We follow the rules. Totally believe it’s bad karma not to. It’s a massive PITA but it’s also a huge PITA when my kids get sick because someone else sent in their sick kid who barfed on them and all the Legos.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      Ugh. I don’t send my kid to daycare if she’s sick. We follow the 24-hour fever free rule and don’t try to fudge it. The only thing that we do is we will send her to daycare if she’s thrown up once in the past 24 hours but isn’t showing any other symptoms – my view on that is that kids throw up all the time and it could be nothing. But if she vomits twice, or has a fever, or is otherwise acting off, I keep her home. Fortunately we tend to have flexible-enough jobs and local-enough grandparents that we can do this.

    • Thisperson1 says:

      Unfortunately, we’ve had to do this before. LO got a LOT of ear infections last winter, and would run a fever but no other symptoms. Even though it wasn’t something contagious, the fever would be enough to send him home. We both used all of our sick time and at the end had to send him in if things were just over the line drawn in the sand. Would have loved to stay home with him, but like being employed too :(

    • mascot says:

      Yeah, I think that this is a know your kid and situation. A one-off puke eposide or a totally normal acting kid with a fever that sometimes crops up late afternoon with no other symptoms? I’ve rolled the dice and sent to school for those. If he’s really sick, then we stay home.

      • CPA Lady says:

        omg the one-off pukes. I have the pukiest kid known to mankind. Reasons she has puked:

        – she was making a gagging noise because she knows I hate when she does that, but it went too far (multiple. damn. times.) She thinks it’s hilllllaaaaaarious up until the point where she barfs on herself.
        – she got a piece of hair in her mouth
        – she had a screaming tantrum and sucked down too much air
        – she didn’t like the taste of a piece of tomato
        – she had a cold and coughed too hard
        – she cried too hard because i had to go into the house to grab my coffee cup and i left her buckled in the car
        – she stuck her hand down her throat to see what would happen (multiple. damn. times.)
        – she was really thirsty

        UGH. I hate puking, so of course I ended up with a puker. She’s only thrown up from being sick maybe twice ever. But she sure has puked a ton.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah, I posted a couple weeks ago with what I thought was a one off puke in the middle of the night… Kiddo was acting normal in the morning so I sent him to school, and then karma got me and he puked all over me in the parking lot when I picked him up in the afternoon, and then a couple more times at home. He was fine all day at school. We kept him home the next day, though, of course.

    • The thing is, a lot of times kids are contagious before they show symptoms, so I feel like the damage is already done by the time they spike a fever. This is at least how I justify not adhering too closely to the 24 hour fever-free rule. We make a call based on the trend of the illness, how high the fever was the day before, and how much my husband and I have going on at work.

      • Coffee Queen says:

        We keep home for puke. Fever is they are not acting normal. If they are playing and acting fine with a fever, we send them.

      • This. I usually go by how they are acting, how high fever is, etc. I mean, they almost certainly caught it at daycare, and they are contagious before they are symptomatic, so everyone has already been exposed. I think there’s limited benefit to keeping them home beyond their own comfort for minor fevers. I have three kids and the youngest is 4 though, so I feel like I’ve gotten pretty good at judging in the morning whether it’s going to resolve by 10:00 am so I’d be home with a happy, active, perfectly fine kid all day or whether it’s going to escalate so I’ll get a call by noon.

      • Spirograph says:

        Yup, exactly this. If the kid is acting normal, he or she goes to school. If kid is whining and acting sick, daycare will definitely check for a fever. I’d rather keep him home and probably be able to send him back the next day, vs him getting sent home mid-day and required to also stay home the next day, which means we’re scrambling for backup care two days instead of one.

  3. Newbie Momma says:

    Moms of “older” breastfed babies — how often are you nursing/pumping and how many ounces per bottle are you leaving with the caregiver? Little baby (7 months) falls asleep great on his own with no sleep associations but still wakes once or twice to eat. I’m thinking about trying to nightwean bc everyone (I.e ped) says they don’t “need” to eat. But that only leaves 5 feeding times during waking hours (he sleeps 6:45-6:45ish) if we keep our current every three hours. And ped has recommended feeding every 4 hours. So not sure how to reconcile that with the Conventional wisdom that breastfed babies only need 4 ounces per feed. So confused.

    • Anonymous says:

      I wouldn’t night wean. If he falls asleep great on his own and only wakes once or twice in 12 hours, that’s awesome and I would be super hesitate to screw with it. Another couple months and he’ll probably drop to one feed overnight as he starts intake more solids in the day.

      I know some peds will say it’s okay but I think that’s because ‘sleeping through the night’ is considered 6 hours of sleep and if he was waking up twice in 6 hours you could probably wean from that. I can’t go 12 hours without wanting something to drink so I can imagine that 12 hours without fluids would be hard on a little one.

      • agree with this one. My bfed babies didn’t night wean until 10-11 months. My husband and I start switching nights around 6-7 months (so he fed a pumped bottle or two one night, then I nursed the next night). It only affected my supply slightly and gave me some necessary full nights of sleep. Around 10-11 months my husband would start exclusively bottle feeding (pumped milk) at night. Then he slowly lowers the ounces, and then switches to water. They both have stopped waking up for the water around 11 months.

        I tend to ignore pedi advice on anything sleep/bfeeding related, under the thought that they 1) tend to study averages and 2) my baby is not a robot. Unless they are telling me about a legit medical issue (i.e my kid isn’t gaining weight, anemia), of course.

    • I was giving more than 4 oz at that age and feeding less than every 3 hours. Closer to 5-6 oz and every 4-5 hours. Can’t recall specifics but I pumped 3 times at work and usually nursed her when I got home, before bed (early bedtime), and if she woke up at night (usually once). In the morning, she had oatmeal with fruit and then the three bottles while I was at work spread out.

    • Conventional wisdom is not one to follow here. Know your kid. My exclusively breastfed baby regularly downed 8 ounces at that age. I’d follow the signals you get from baby! I think we fed him four times a day not five?

    • ElisaR says:

      I hadn’t heard the 4 oz thing for b-fed babies….I gave my son 6 ounces in each bottle at daycare (I pumped that much)

      • Anon in NYC says:

        Yeah, my daughter ate about 5-6 oz pretty steadily from about 5 months on.

      • October says:

        “They” say that b-fed babies don’t need more than 4-5 oz per feeding (and if you are giving more, you should look into paced feeding because you may be overfeeding). Unlike formula, where you increase the quantity as baby gets older, the composition of breast milk changes to meet a growing baby’s needs. You know your baby best, but this is what the lactation “experts” say.

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree with everyone else that he can take more than 4 oz of bm per bottle. At 7 months, my babies took 4 x 5 oz bottles while I was at work and nursed at 5:30pm, 7pm, and 5am. I pumped 3x at work and once at home.

    • My son stopped waking up to feed around 9 months. (And then started again around 12 months…). You can try night weaning if you want but you don’t have to – if your baby can put himself to sleep, you’ve won the biggest battle. My son also had 4 x 4 oz breast milk bottles at daycare, and 2 nursing sessions when awake at home. I think he drank much more than 4oz when he nursed sometimes though, particularly first thing in the morning (guessing based on pumping output), but it is hard to say. I also probably nursed way more often than every 4 hours on the weekends because I never quite transitioned from a newborn feeding schedule. Every baby is different – do what works for you. Solids are going to start ramping up to provide more calories soon too.

      • Pretty Primadonna says:

        When did you son stop waking up to nurse after 12 months? I have a nearly-fourteen month old who I am trying to wean, generally, but would LOVE to night wean.

        • October says:

          The solution is to make your husband handle the night wake ups :) As long as your baby doesn’t have a nursing to sleep association, the wake ups are probably just a habit. This is what it took to night wean my 17 mo old and finally get him to sleep through the night.

        • My son is 5 and all of my memories are blurry, so take of my comments with a grain of salt. But I know there was a lot of early morning waking and nap fails around 15 months, related to nap transition and developmental leaps. I really don’t remember when exactly he started and stopped waking consistently at night once he stopped initially around 9 months – I remember that because it was the deadline Weissbluth mentioned in his book, and I was so relieved I didn’t “have to” try to do something about night feedings. But I am pretty sure he started again; I just don’t remember how consistent it was or how long it lasted. I think night waking in general really slowed down after age 2, and I also cut might night time nursing sessions quite short as time went by. I didn’t fully wean until he was 2. My son basically never nursed himself to sleep in the middle of the night, even as a tiny infant, and I had the sense he’d hang out and nurse all night if I let him. So by the time he was a toddler I’d give him a few minutes and then pop him off and put him back to bed awake. I think it usually worked….as I said, memories are foggy.

    • Cornellian says:

      If you can get to a lactation clinic (or a store with an accurate scale for babies) you can weigh baby before and after a feed and see how much he’s actually consuming. That might help you figure out what he needs.

      FWIW, my (giant) seven month old gets three 4 oz bottles at daycare (plus one meal of pureed food), and nurses around 6 AM and 7 PM (and sometimes again in the middle of the night). If we had 5 oz bottles maybe I’d give him one of them, but we don’t, and he is gaining well, so I’m not worrying about it.

      • My kids were giants, and they always got 4 oz bottles (except DS1, who got an 8oz bottle at night when he switched to formula at around 11 months – the others nursed until they didn’t need/want milk before bed).

    • layered bob says:

      My feeling on the “don’t need to eat” thing is, fine, they are not going to actually starve to death if they don’t eat at night. But babies under 12/18 months are growing SO fast, and their brains are growing so fast, that they can really use all the calories they can get – so if baby is hungry at night, feed him. “Not exhibiting clear harm from lack of feeding” is way too low of a bar for me. I am a grown adult and want a snack before I go to bed and a few sips of water part way through the night, and milk is both of those things for a baby.

      fwiw, I am still nursing a two year old 1 to 4 times a day, including at night if she happens to wake up, although this kid basically night-weaned herself around 16 months.

    • Anonymous says:

      At that age, both of my children were STTN. On work days, they would nurse three times a day (morning, after work, and bedtime) and have 3 3-4 ounce bottles. They did have somewhat later bedtimes, and were sleeping something like 9-7. They both had later bedtimes until they were fully weaned and dropped to one nap a day (both things happened with both kids around 14 months). They were generally eating every 3 hours, although there was a much shorter spacing of the last two feedings. My younger son naturally started spacing out his feedings and taking slightly bigger bottles as he got older, he would take one 4 ounce bottle and one 5 ounce bottle (along with three nursing sessions). Neither ever had weight gain problems. They did both initiate night weaning, although one needed a little nudge. I realize I do have unusually good sleepers.

    • Anonymous says:

      I stayed home/nursed for a year. Kiddo started sleeping through the night about 10 weeks, dropping feedings as she consolidated sleep. She started making cow eyes at solid food a few weeks later. At four months our ped told us to start feeding her whenever she showed “sign of readiness” (good at sitting up, interested in food, trying to take our food from us) which was basically 3.5 months. But we started when she was cl0ser to 4.5 months. She just ate solids at dinner. By six months she was eating breakfast / dinner and nursing 4 times a day (on waking, pre-morning nap, pre-afternoon nap and before bedtime). We added lunch about 9 months. At one year she consolidated her naps (that was a PAIN — I wished she’d waited) so I dropped mid-morning nursing. About 14 months replaced post afternoon nap nursing with afternoon snack. At fifteen months she stopped seeming interested in morning nursing (about the time she started walking) and then she quit nursing to sleep so we dropped that pretty quickly too.

      Not knowing what your kid’s solids schedule is, it’s impossible to say whether you should drop his night nursing sessions. (Just met someone with a six month old who was not eating ANY solids, even though baby was interested in them.) But at seven months I feel like a combination of small solid meals and nursing throughout the day should be enough (sans growth spurts!) without any nursing at night.

  4. Blueberry says:

    Any advice on when to seek intervention for speech issues, and where to go? Some people in my family have noticed that my 4-year-old’s speech is less clear than it was six months ago. I haven’t noticed a change and think he is about as clear a speaker as an average 4-year-old, but I want to be proactive. I’m setting up a meeting with his preschool teacher to get her thoughts, and then his pediatrician, I guess. Any other advice or resources?

    • Anonymous says:

      My favorite speech resource is We did a Hanen course at our local hospital when our 2 year old had an expressive speech delay (no receptive delay). We used their techniques and she caught up with her peers before she would have been old enough for formal interventions at age 3. For age 3-4, Hanen says to be concerned about delay if they don’t ask questions, are not using sentence (e.g., “I don’t want that” or “My truck is broken”) by three years and cannot able to tell a simple story by four or five years.

      • Blueberry says:

        Thanks! I should clarify that he’s definitely not delayed in his ability to express himself — he’s very verbal and tells lots of stories and jokes, etc. — it’s more that he seems to be moving backward rather than forward in terms of clarity in his pronunciation.

        • Anonymous says:

          If he just had a burst of new words/parts of speech, this might be normal as his brain struggles to keep up with his mouth.

    • EB0220 says:

      If you have insurance that will cover speech therapy, I highly recommend that you have him assessed now. It’s MUCH easier to take him to therapy while he’s in daycare and can miss part of the day than it is once he’s in school next year. I finally took my kiddo (very similar to yours) to speech therapy a month before she started kindergarten. I’m now kicking myself for not starting sooner because it’s really difficult for us to get her there now that school has started.

      • mascot says:

        Does she qualify for speech therapy through the county school system? Even though we are in private school, ours is open to all kids in the county and my kid can still get therapy at his zoned public school. Which has the advantage of being “free” although it’s a bit of a juggle with different school schedules.

    • Anonymous says:

      I don’t have any speech-specific recommendations but do have experience with gross motor delays. Based on my experience, I’d try to have him evaluated by a speech therapist and wouldn’t rely on the ped.

    • We’ve done a lot of speech — this is one of my favorite charts, found towards the bottom:

      Boys pronounce some sounds later than girls. I would either start with a referral from the pediatrician or with the local school system and ask for an evaluation. Sometimes we don’t hear the changes because we are with them every day. Even if there is a slight delay, it may not mean that he qualifies for services. I’m happy to share — and you’re being a great momma to be a proactive advocate for your son!

  5. Building off the tattoo question yesterday, any good ideas for a tattoo to commemorate being a mother? I’m waffling between a couple ideas and waiting for a good inspiration to strike. I think this might be my last tattoo – running out of business-appropriate areas (that I want to have tattooed, that is) – so I’m putting a little too much pressure on myself to make it great.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      Caveat that I don’t have tattoos, but what about your kiddo’s birthday? Something simple like “3.17.15”. Or, I saw someone get a tattoo of her kids name in her own handwriting (a pretty cursive).

    • anon for this says:

      I have an older child and for several years have been contemplating a tattoo of two versions of a particular symbol/icon she likes: a little one representing her and a larger one representing me.

    • I have a friend who took the ink footprint of her newborn baby’s foot to the tattoo artist and he did a replica of it.

    • My friend has a tattoo of a raven holding an envelope with her twin’s birthday on it.

    • Another Tattoo Anon says:

      I’m the anon that posed the question yesterday! While I have no particular ideas in response to your question, I’d love to know your thoughts on tattoo placement. I’m debating something large on the front of my thigh that would not be visible at work, but I’m not sure whether that placement looks odd… will it look like it’s just floating?

      • I’m probably not the right person to ask. To me, the placement only matters in whether it makes you happy.

        I have one on my upper arm (men’s tshirt sleeves, like every corporate shirt ever, cover it up), one on my neck hidden by my hair, and a small one on my upper shoulder. This one will likely go on my outer hip, which is a weird and probably inadvisable location, but since it’s for my kids (and the design will be super simple) I’m okay with that.

        The thigh is okay, but consider your hairiness level and your design. If you’re getting a baby footprint and you have dark hair, it’ll look super weird if you go 3 days without shaving. I have a personal rule that I won’t get a tattoo on anything hairy or saggy. And as much as I want a finger tattoo, they fade pretty easily and require a lot more upkeep than I’m willing to do.

      • Rainbow Hair says:

        I have seen some super lovely front-of-thigh tattoos on women. I love it!

    • Rainbow Hair says:

      My daughter and I have a favorite lullaby… ok it’s not a lullaby but it’s always the last song we sing together before bed, Tom Wait’s “Shiny Things.” So ‘for her’ (and to commemorate this phase of our life, and because crows are cool) I’m going to get a crow holding a shiny thing in his mouth, with [flower after which she is named] at his feet.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Older breastfed babies question – I would follow your kids lead. DD is 5 months and wakes once at night. She eats every 2.5-3hrs throughout the day. I guess it depends how much he’s getting in solids and if he’s drinking any water? Also something that made me stress out less about sleep is realizing that as adults we usually get up once a night to use the bathroom or drink water, why should we expect different from a baby? If your child is gaining weight fine and the middle of the night feeds aren’t bothering you too much then I would let it go.

  7. Part time nanny/sitter says:

    I’m looking for a part-time sitter and want a gut-check on my expectations.

    I’m looking for somewhere between 10-15 hours/week, in the mornings. I found a woman who works 35 hours/week for another family as a FT nanny. I spoke with her current employer and know the scoop- she is “on” from 12-7pm 4 days/week and flexes the rest of the hours on the 5th day based on what the family needs. She’s looking for supplemental income and the current employer is 100% fine with that. She is salaried and gets paid vacation/holidays with current employer.

    She’s asked for $20/hr [this is about market for our area, maybe slightly lower. It’d be for my 1 year old 80% of the time, and occasionally maybe my 4 y/o) and all paid vacation/time off. Essentially, she’d get a “salary” from me of $200-$300/week (depending on where we land with hours) every week, regardless of if my family is on vacation, there are holidays, or she’s taking time off for personal reasons.

    I totally 100% understand why a full time nanny would need and expect this, but it seems so odd for a part-time arrangement, especially one that would be augmenting her existing job–which has these benefits. Additionally, she’s not available on school holidays or snow days (because she’d be committing to cover for the full-time family). I was willing to provide that flexibility, but it seems like I’m not really getting anything in return.

    Am I being cheap/unreasonable? FWIW I think she’d be good for the kids, but not Mary Poppins the Supernanny, and I am looking at other options to fill this gap (extended day, sending my toddler to part time daycare, etc)

    • I’m far from an expert, but I think this is the trade-off of having a part-time nanny. A $200-300 salary does not seem out of line to me. The lack of flexibility stinks, but I don’t see a way around that. Her full-time job is the one she’ll have a greater commitment to. For snow days and holidays, is there any possibility of sharing care with the full-time family?

      • Part time nanny/sitter says says:

        It’s not the dollar amount so much as her expectation for all the vacation/time off to be paid. I’d been planning to guarantee the hours and if for some reason it didn’t work, do it as a date night or whatever. Paying her for holidays when she’s getting holiday pay from the other family, and also giving her paid time off when she’s getting that elsewhere…that just seemed like all the flexibility is on her end.

        But, again, I’m here for a gut-check.

        • Regardless of what’s going on with the other family, would you expect to give holiday and PTO for a part time nanny in your area? I feel like in most areas, you would. Kudos to her for getting it from both of her part-time gigs.

          At least in my area, part time nannies still aren’t available for snow days and holidays – that’s why they’re part time. You can ask about sharing on those days, or look into college or older high school kids, as backup care for those days, and see if that maybe factors into your decision.

      • PT Nanny says:

        For what it’s worth, I do not think her requests are reasonable. Most PT jobs do not come with FT benefits, whether you are looking at hourly positions or salaried professional jobs. As a big firm lawyer, if I dropped below 50%, I’d lose benefits. If I were you, and I really liked the nanny, I think I’d offer to compromise by agreeing EITHER to paid vacation during our family vacations, OR a set number of paid days off to take at the nanny’s discretion, but not both. I definitely would not agree to pay her for snow days on which she is working for (and being paid by) the other family during those hours — not sure if that’s what you meant about snow days. (Also, this is why, when I’ve had a PT nanny, I went with a college student. I do not agree with the poster above that this is the trade-off of having a PT nanny. I see it the opposite way — if the nanny cannot find the “more than full time” position she wants — and they are definitely out there — a flat hourly position is the alternative. Just like if she started picking up shifts at Starbucks in the AM instead. And Starbucks wouldn’t be so cool about calling out on snow days.)

    • She still needs money to live when she isn’t working for you, and if she needs more money than she is currently earning, she probably also needs more money during her paid vacation weeks.

    • Part time nanny/sitter says says:

      The more I reflect on these responses, the more I’m realizing she isn’t the right fit. If she’d asked for $25/hr but skipped the vacation/time off/etc request, I’d have been fine. You pay a premium for part time care, and I get that.

      But I think this is really just another sign that she’s going to want a pro-rated version of what she’s getting from her full time job from us, and what I want is a contractor (if that makes sense). And throughout the process I’ve had this feeling that the “other family” will want her to do things that will push into our time–which is fine, but probably just not right for us. She’ll be watching just an easy-going 1-year old, including a nap time, and not 4 (!) kids under 8, which she does at her other job.

      I’m looking at a college aged sitter as well as a daycare that does part time– both of those are sitting better with me. Thank you all for your thoughts and I think she’s looking at other families so hopefully she finds a better fit!

  8. AwayEmily says:

    A (possibly) fun question: any good sources for a high-quality toddler hoodie (2T)? I’m willing to spend a bit more on one for my daughter since we will probably pass it on to her baby brother eventually. I like the colors at but found them way too boxy/baggy (and my daughter is not exactly a skinny toddler). Same problem with Carters. Anyone have good experiences with Hanna or Boden?

    • Caveat that I bought this before American Apparel went under and then came back to life so I haven’t tried the reboot version, but I absolutely love this sweatshirt. I bought it for my son when he was a little toddler, and kept buying bigger sizes as he grew. When the store went under, my first thought was BUT I NEED THE SWEATSHIRT!

    • I got a bunch of Hanna Anderson hand me downs and they seem to wear really well. Looked good when we got them even though they were well-used and still look good after my daughter has been wearing them. Boden is generally good too, but I’ve had some issues with pilling on their sweaters.

      • Should add – my daughter had some sweatshirts from Ralph Lauren and they have held up really well. Same with most of her Gap stuff.

        • The Gap hoodies hold up great, but I’ve noticed they’re long in the arms/short in the torso. Might depend on the kid, though.

      • Anon in NYC says:

        Love Hanna. Hanna is my go-to for pants and stuff that I want to last (sweaters/sweatshirts). My daughter is tall / slightly above average weight. Her Hanna sweatshirts have definitely held up.

        Also, I’ve only had one problem with their clothing so far (my daughter somehow managed to rip apart a thinner sweatshirt at a seam) and they replaced it, no questions asked.

    • NewMomAnon says:

      Both Hanna and Boden are great quality, although I haven’t bought a hoodie there.

      And this is maybe not what you asked, but the hoodies in Target’s Cat & Jack line have been great – soft, cute, durable, no fading or piling in the wash. I feel like the boys hoodies have been better than the girls, but maybe that’s because I’ve only bought one boys hoodie and have bought several girls hoodies, and it’s a sample error. They have stayed softer than the Gap Kids or H&M ones, and have faded less.

    • Our Peek hoodies have held up really well and fit great. I also love Tea Collection hoodies, but they don’t seem to have a lot of solids this season.

    • avocado says:

      My kid has a Boden hoodie that still looks great after two years, but she is 10 and not quite so hard on clothes as a toddler. We have also had good luck with Tea.

    • shortperson says:

      we love everlane mini hoodies but looks like they dont sell those anymore. jcrew has great kids hoodies too.

  9. No experience with Hanna or Boden, but I like Oshkosh hoodies for toddlers and little kids. For the price, the quality is excellent. Nice, thick fleece, good colors. We’ve passed my son’s down to cousins and they get used by 2-3 kids before getting donated. They are longer in the body than Carter’s hoodies and also cut slimmer in the arms. (That makes them not as great for layering with long-sleeve tees, so I have sized up to get more wear out of them.)

  10. Public v Private Sector HR says:

    I’m a private sector HR professional with an upcoming oral exam (panel interview withthree neighboring city professionals) for the public sector position. Any tips on resources related to the switch from private to public? Terminology and cultural differences? Typical questions experienced on a panel oral exam? Other tips?

    (The oral exam score will be combined with my written test score to determine my rank. Top ranked candidates get interviews with the hiring manager.)

    Thanks in advance!

  11. I’ve started down the rabbit hole of the Hanna Anderssen website and GAHHHH, it is all so cute. Just bright, happy kid clothes. I just can’t get over the sticker shock, even though I know it’s amazing quality.

    • Check out the clearance section. Very reasonable prices and with kids you can shop ahead.

      • Part time nanny/sitter says says:

        we do clearance and secondhand Hanna. Plus, my kids are the same gender so it gets well-loved.

        • If I had same-gender kids, I could justify it a whole lot more! Hanna isn’t common where we live and there isn’t a secondhand market.

    • They are also on Zulily right now! Althought probably picked through because it’s been up since Sunday. I haven’t loved the quality since they went through some ownership changes last year, but I did snag some zulily sale stuff to try them out again.

    • Butter says:

      They just had a 30% off everything sale, so keep an eye out for those. I also buy HA second hand bc it holds up so well.

    • The quality is amazing. You really can hand those tights down from child to child with them looking like new.

      • ElisaR says:

        i’ve had horrible lucky with HA lately – the zippers on the pajamas (3 pairs now) have broken. i returned 2 of them (and got attitude from the associate at the store) but haven’t had time to get to store to replace the 3rd pair……

      • Bummer. Most of our stuff is older–stuff we bought for my older daughter who is 5 years older than the daughter wearing it now. I’ve heard some concerns about the quality declining, and that sucks sooooo much.

      • How do you keep these expensive high quality clothes from being hopelessly stained long enough to pass down though? I think my son is just a bit special in this regard, or we’re laundry-challenged, but he has dirt stains on all his light colored shorts, food stains on most of his shirts, etc. etc. This is why we use hand me downs, Carters, and Old Navy.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ebay! You can get lots of new Hanna stuff with pretty good markdowns and great used stuff. (Just bought new HA training unders and a barely used Patagonia snowsuit, both marked down about 30-40%.) Lots of Tea on their too.

  12. avocado says:

    Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus and he just scored the Hamilton tickets that my kid desperately wants for Christmas. Now Santa just has to break it to daddy that the face value has gone up on this block of tickets (gulp). I think this is also going to count as my birthday + Christmas present.

    • I gave up after 15 minutes of every show I clicked on being sold out. But a friend recently won their day of lottery and another person I know scored tickets by just calling the box office and getting a cancellation so fingers crossed I’ll see it at some point before the next eclipse.

      • avocado says:

        I really hate how the website works, requiring you to click on a specific show instead of allowing you to search on a range of dates. I lucked out because the show I clicked on was sold out but the site offered me tickets to the matinee on the same date.

        • Yes, so annoying! Just let me know what I can buy and when and I will rearrange my life if its possible. But happy to hear someone lucked out. Enjoy!

      • Anonymous says:

        I need to sell mine for a February show, if you are interested.

  13. Going anon for silly questions... says:

    Is a diaper showing on a 1 year old really that bad? I think this is silly, but it’s been bugging me. At a children’s museum this weekend, a young woman felt the need to point out that my 1 year old’s diaper was showing. Baby girl was wearing shorts, but as she was playing they shorts twisted and you could see some diaper. At the time I just smiled and nodded (my polite ignore method). But it has just stuck in my craw. Am I some horribly inappropriate person to not care about a little diaper showing? Or was this person out of line?

    I’m coming around to the belief that most critical comments strangers make about your kids are out of line. But I am also trying to open to the idea that I may be wrong about this?

    • avocado says:

      Your critic was way out of line. She must not have any children.

    • What the? There is absolutely nothing wrong with diapers showing. Diapers come up really high (to be effective!), all babies/toddlers wear diapers, and kids like being comfortable in their clothes. I don’t get this at all. People, man.

    • Blueberry says:

      Nope, that was 100% a weird thing for her to say.

    • Chi Squared says:

      What? Seriously? You are not wrong about this. That is a totally ridiculous comment.

    • layered bob says:

      this is bonkers. My kids’ diapers show probably 100% of the time.

    • That lady is cray. Diapers are going to show!

    • ElisaR says:

      not bad at all. it’s standard in my book! why in the world would someone point that out to you???

    • That’s insane. My 5 year old son likes wearing short shorts with boxer briefs, and I don’t even really worry about his underwear being longer than his shorts.

    • AwayEmily says:

      WHAAAAAT? I actually think it is kind of cute when their little diapers show. Like, a reminder that even though they are toddling around acting all grown up, they are still little babies.

    • Another vote for… she is wrong, not you!

    • Myrna Minkoff says:

      This really burns me up! What the heck? What was her tone like? Was she genuinely trying to be helpful?

      • ThatGirl says:

        OP – Did you respond “Yeah I know it looks weird huh? She doesn’t usually wear one so I dunno…”
        Myrna – you musty minx we need to be friends!!

    • Wow, weird. I thought this was going to be a question on if you need to wear the diaper cover/bloomers that comes with the summery dresses for babies or if it’s OK to expose the diaper. OR if it’s okay to wear a rash guard + disposable swim diaper or if you need to put a bathing suit over.

      But “your kid is bending over and I can see a little bit of her diaper?” WTF.

      Extreme benefit of the doubt: maybe she doesn’t have kids or wasn’t really thinking and thought perhaps exposed diaper = potential for leakage/blowout.

    • Anonymous says:

      Clearly a loon. Kids under 3 can be naked (weather permitting) for all I care. I take my daughter to the pool in just a swim diaper (ie topless) all the time. She has a tunic top that she insists is a dress so it is a diaper show all day on orange dress days. Who cares?

  14. Christmas Outfits says:

    Anyone want to help me shop for Christmas church outfits for my little boys? (I know it’s early, but hey…) I will have a newborn and just-turned-two year old. It’s one of the few occasions that DH doesn’t protest against me dressing them like little smocked Prince George lookalikes. I’m finding tons of cute matching smocked/embroidered Christmas things, but very few come in newborn size. I would also consider a super foo-foo bubble/jon jon outfit for the baby and a less foo-foo but still matching/coordinating shirt and pants combo for big brother. Any places I should look?

    • Blueberry says:

      I did a matching sweater (for older boy) and sweater onesie (for baby) in holiday patterns from Hannah Anderson that I really liked. (And then it turned out to be like 70 degrees that year…) Maybe too early to find these though.

    • I’d wait a couple of months. Most of the Christmas stuff rolls out in October.

    • Maddie Ross says:

      Many of the smocked sellers are offering their wares now – Cecil and Lou, Smocked Auctions, Smockadot Kids are great options. They all have instagram and facebook sales, as well as websites. You can laugh, but I have the jammies and Christmas outfits already ordered for my littles, as well as holiday card outfits to wear in October or November. (I’m in the south if you can’t tell…)

      • Christmas Outfits says:

        These are my go-tos! (I’m also in the south and also like to have this all squared away before Halloween.) But they all seem to start at 3 months. I will keep looking!

        • Maddie Ross says:

          Somehow I missed the newborn thing in my reading. If you go look at the websites, they often have gowns that are coordinating to their clothes. And I also had a newborn last Christmas but did 3 month sized jammies. They were big, but worked for photos.

      • Anonymous says:

        How do you know what size kiddo will be in six months? Everytime I’ve tried this I have been so, so off base (I mean, I only have a 22 month old, but I’ve been wrong at least once a season for the last year and a half!)

    • Anon in NYC says:

      A friend shops at Beaufort Bonnet for those types of things. I’ve never bought anything from them, but it looks like they have some fall/Christmas stuff up on their website. Plus newborn things.

      • ElisaR says:

        um i just went to beautfort bonnet and it’s too cute….. thanks – i think. i’m about to spend on some adorable holiday-ness!

    • Anonymous says:

      I really like Best Dressed Child and Bella Bliss for smocked clothing. Both already have fall items for sale.

    • Beans says:

      Bella Bliss and Little English are my pick for beautiful children’s clothing.

    • Gymboree often has coordinated family wear for Christmas, and you could buy DH the matching tie/shirt/sweater (or whatever they have).

  15. Weekend potty training question: My daughter will turn 3 around Thanksgiving, and she’s finally showing interest in using the potty. Right now, she’s wearing pull-ups and we encourage her to use the potty and take her when she asks, but we haven’t been consistent or made any sort of plan. They take her every 30-40 minutes at preschool, and she’s been staying dry with the exception of naptime. I’m thinking the long weekend at home plan is the way to go. But looking at our schedules, there’s no good time to do it! I’m aiming for labor day weekend – preschool is closed that Friday and again that Monday, so it gives us four days. But, we have plans Saturday morning that we just cannot change. So should I start Friday and just throw a pull up back on her for Saturday morning and resume that afternoon? Or should we start Saturday afternoon and only give ourselves 2.5 days? I’m worried we might confuse her if we break from the plan on Saturday morning.


    • Anonymous says:

      What are your plans? Can you just take her to the bathroom frequently at the event and bring a change of clothes? If she’s mostly dry at daycare now, I would be surprised if she isn’t ready to be fully trained even before November.

    • It sounds like she’s basically trained already – are you worried about transitioning to underwear, not having to remind her to go, or what? We never did the stay home all weekend thing, we just started using underwear instead of diapers/pull-ups at some point and went on about our business, armed with a Potette and change of clothes. I would vote for taking the potette and using underwear on your Saturday outing.

  16. Both of your responses make me wonder if I’m overthinking this! We haven’t been diligent at home like they have at preschool. So perhaps we should simply switch to underwear and commit to taking her every 30-40 min like they do.

    I’m finding that the thought of potty training is incredibly daunting to me, so I’ve buried my head completely in the sand. Now that she’s showing an interest, I feel the need to make a grand plan. But maybe she’s further along than I realized…

    • Doooooooo it. We did it early at 2 and while it was a pain for a week or so, I had 18 blissful months of underwear and not dealing with diapers while all my daughter’s peers in daycare and then in preschool struggled.

      I have a second one who is 18 months and I’m already giving her the shifty eye and thinking about what bribes it’d take (none, she’s not ready yet…sigh.)

      But here’s the kick in the butt you need: stop being lazy, stop being intimidated, buckle down and take her every 20-30 minutes. She’ll be trained in a weekend. Mine even went in a port-a-potty (!) the weekend after we did the initial potty training.

    • People define trained differently, but it sounds like she’s most of the way there. I endorse having no plan. If it doesn’t work you will try something else. Every kid is different, so you need a flexible plan in any case.

      I also wasn’t willing to take my son every 20-30 minutes or something – we waited to train until he could mostly tell us when he needed to go. Super lazy approach, but you do what works for you. I was not in a hurry. Actually we also tried and then went back to diapers for 6 months and then tried again.

      Poo accidents are the worst; pee is NBD. If she is a predictable pooper, you could work hard to make sure that happens in the potty and give her more leeway with pee.

    • CPA Lady says:

      Yeah, I never used a “method” or did a boot camp or had a plan of any kind. Once my kid was ready and asking to use the potty (around age 2) I just kept her in a diaper but used it like a pull up. Eventually I got panties that I put over the diapers. Then just panties. Diapers are around and I let her wear them if she asks to, but she still uses the toilet rather than the diaper. It took longer to train ourselves to remember to take her to the bathroom every couple of hours (or more frequently when you’re just starting out), and honestly we could probably get rid of the diapers right now and just have to deal with an early morning poop accident from time to time. Maybe we’ll leave the diapers for the pacifier fairy that’s coming to get her pacis in a few weeks. Potty training doesn’t have to be a Thing. Daycare mostly did it for us and we just followed their lead. It sounds like you’re well on your way.

  17. Blueberry says:

    Yeah, we were really formal about weekend potty bootcamp for my first, but with my second, I was out of town for a weekend, and, well, it kind of just happened without me! (Thanks, superstar dad!) If kiddo stays dry already, as long as you are taking her to the potty diligently, I bet you are fine with underwear at your event, so long as you bring a few changes. This does depend a little on the event. Will there be an easy, non-scary potty accessible? My little kid is a bit freaked out by public bathrooms…

    • ElisaR says:

      the possibility of an automatic flush is too much for my nieces….. i don’t really blame them

    • CLMom says:

      ProTip from Oh Crap Potty Training book…keep a package of post-its in your purse. Use the post-it to cover the sensor on toilets so that the automatic flash will not go off.

  18. Rainbow Hair says:

    I hope I’m not too late with my own potty training question. I am anxiousAF about my daughter…

    What happened was… she was interested in the potty, started using it here and there, no pressure from us. We bought her some training pants that she could choose to wear at school or at home (like super absorbent unders). With daycare’s encouragement, she got very focused on keeping her underwear dry (rather than peeing in the toilet) and so would just go ALL DAY at school without peeing. Sometimes she’d have an accident in the afternoon, sometimes hold it until she had a diaper on to go home. (One daycare teacher said, “I basically consider her potty trained!” … I disagree.) Not peeing all day, for multiple days in a row… that can’t be healthy for a 2.5 year old!!!

    So I’m thinking I’m going to step WAY back, and take her to Target tonight, like, “You can choose. You can pick pullups and you can pee in them, but you can also use the potty when you wear them. Or if you just want to go back to diapers, you can choose those. And then later, when you’re ready to use the potty, we can try again.”

    Is this sane? Please tell me I haven’t let daycare break my perfect little girl :-(

    • Blueberry says:

      It sounds like she is a little scared or anxious about the potty? With my kid who just learned ( / is learning) to use the potty, for the first few days, he got really upset when he needed to poop and would cry desperately for a diaper. We didn’t give in and sort of did the pantsless thing in the house for a few days. He would end up going reluctantly to the toilet, and now he seems to be more or less over it. Maybe should try this approach over the weekend rather than going back to diapers? Because she is clearly physically there. I would definitely talk to the teacher about encouraging her to sit on the potty and try to pee, because, yeah, not going all day is not the best. My older son is a little camel who has to be cajoled and threatened to take a break and go to the darn bathroom sometimes, and I know it can’t be great for his little bladder.

    • Rainbow Hair says:

      Thanks, Blueberry. Yeah she has told me she’s scared of the potties at daycare.

      And in their defense, they put her on the toilet at least a few times a day, frequently up to five times, but she just won’t pee.

      I am torn between not wanting to pressure her and make her feel bad (and maybe encourage her, even more, to hold it) and not wanting to totally stall out when she can already do it — but then again, maybe being emotionally ready is just as important as being physically ready.

      • Blueberry says:

        Oof, that’s tough. On the one hand, you don’t want to create bad habits by reverting to diapers, but on the other you don’t want her to freak out about the toilet and harm herself by holding it in all day! Not sure the best approach for the week, but I still think if I were you, I’d try for a low-key pantsless weekend with lots of time chilling out on the potty at home.

    • I’d seriously think about stepping way back and going back to diapers. If she’s stressed out about it, she could very well be stressed out about it home. There are all these studies about how potty anxiety can lead to constipation, and that’s a road you just don’t want to go down.

      • Rainbow Hair says:

        Yeah, this is what keeps me up at night (well, this and the state of the world and her inevitable teenage sadness… but also this) — those stories were so scary and I think my nieces are dealing with some of that and I just don’t *care* where she goes, as long as she’s healthy and happy.

    • Anonymous says:

      Man, the Squatty Potty folks need to make ergonomic toilets for toddlers. I feel like these kids are so used to being able to go ergonomically and then we put them on toilets and they don’t know what to do.

      I also think we sort of talk badly about bodily functions. I’ve noticed my 18 month old saying “eww” sometimes when I open a poopy diaper (both my husband and I sometimes say “ew”). I just keep saying, poop is good, it means you’re eating healthy food and your body works right! I know a mom who tells her kid that gross stuff on the playground is “yucky poo-poo” and I’m like, that can’t be good for potty training.

      So step back. But tell her everytime you go to the bathroom that you are going to go and pee in the toilet. Make sure she knows that’s where goes and that it’s normal and fine.

      • Blueberry says:

        For real about the squatty potty. If you don’t have something similar already, the baby bjorn potty works well for us. We have that in addition to a toddler seat on the toilet in each bathroom. Cleaning poop out of a baby bjorn potty is gross, but I see why my toddler prefers to use that one.

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