Thing You Can Buy While Shopping For Your Kids Tuesday: Single-Button Jersey-Knit Blazer

Old Navy is one of our favorite places to shop for both boys, and we love their socks for babies — but I often spot things for myself. Their ponte blazers are always very highly rated and don’t stay in stock for long, so if you’re on the hunt for a spring-y, happy, stripey blazer, check this one out. There are a lot of sizes left at the moment, and it’s only $39 full price — not bad. It’s available in sizes XS-XXL (although alas, the XS is sold out). Single-Button Jersey-Knit Blazer

Here’s a plus-size option in four colors at Nordstrom.

This post contains affiliate links and CorporetteMoms may earn commissions for purchases made through links in this post. For more details see here. Thank you so much for your support!

(I’m trying out a new theme for Tuesdays: things you buy for yourself while shopping for your kids. Yea? Nay? I know I’ve started buying a lot more things for my husband and myself from stores we shop at for the kids, like Gap, Old Navy, H&M, and others. We actually have a survey heading your way hopefully very soon — but if you have any other general comments about the “themes” for our morning posts we’d love to hear them. Nursing/feeding getting old for anyone else?)


  1. Enjoying the sensation of being pregnant today, slight roundness to my tummy (more baby, less burrito) and loads of what I assume are baby kicks. 20 week scan tomorrow! Had to run off the bus and be sick last night so not exactly smooth sailing but I’ll take what I can get.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      Aw, nice! Enjoy the good parts.

    • Lyssa says:

      Yay! Loved that part!

      • It’s so lovely. I’m not showing enough for anyone to realise / comment on so it feels like I’m smuggling around this wonderful little secret.

    • Running Numbers says:

      Enjoy! I am also amazed that you’re not showing much at 20 weeks! I feel like I’m getting obvious and I’m hardly out of my first trimester. That’s awesome!

      • Cb we are so totally pregnancy twins – I just had my 20 week yesterday and found out we’re having a boy :)

        I’m definitely showing, but I love it because it’s the “cute bump” stage. Rocking the bodycon styles before I feel massive!

        • Kindergarten boy says:

          Aww you guys are making me miss being pregnant! I saw a picture from my last pregnancy at about 24 ish weeks and I remember feeling really put together that day but not necessarily beautiful. Well, looking at that photo, I was positively glowing – I looked beautiful and beaming and that bump that felt so big at the time was just at the perfect stage of adorableness.

          Sigh. Enjoy your pregnancies, Pogo and Cb!!

          • Anonymous says:

            Yes, thanks for giving me hope as I sit at my desk trying to stay awake (and not throw up) at 9 weeks along. :)

          • 9 weeks was my worst week for morning sickness – you can make it!! That week was Christmas – New Year’s for me and no one was in the office so I literally came in 10-3 each day. I don’t know how I would have survived otherwise.

            I also had several people tell me how awful I looked during week 8. “you look so gray and tired, you should go home” definitely wasn’t glowing yet – you’ve got time :)

          • Anonymous says:

            Thanks Pogo, that’s what I’m hoping. This is my second and with my first I remember I wasn’t totally in the clear until 13-14 weeks. Hoping there is at least some relief before then, another month sounds sooo long!

        • Running numbers: I think it’s because I’m decently tall, broad, and sturdily built. My husband really offended me once when he said I was like a battleship, apparently in ship geek world, this is a compliment as the battleships are the most beautiful / have lovely lines. But yes, plenty of room for baby to stretch out in my belly. I also felt super bloated in my first trimester, my normal tights were uncomfortable at 10 weeks but feel fine now.

          Pogo: Ahh, so exciting! I’m team surprise so hoping nothing is super evident on the scan.

          • I wouldn’t look too closely then – my baby’s junk was in the screen plenty of times !!! ( when the tech was trying to measure his femur, view his feet, etc) But maybe because I had already found out it seemed more obvious to me?

            Enjoy getting to see your little one and hoping all goes well – I definitely had a moment of holding my breath each time she zeroed in on something – checking the heart, looking for cleft palate, etc. Despite how much you mentally tell yourself you’ll handle it if they find anything, it is still a relief to know everything is “healthy”.

    • Edna Mazur says:

      I’m 24 weeks pregnant with my third and look like a house :) Enjoy the second trimester, it’s the best.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I like the new theme for Tuesday. I often throw a few things in an order for me when buying stuff for the kids from H&M or Old Navy/Gap/BR.

    • Kindergarten boy says:

      Yes I laughed at the theme and also loved it. I do like the feeding/nursing topics too so don’t get rid of them but it does seem like I sometimes need a reminder to shop for myself too.

    • EBMom says:

      I’ve been debating this in my head off and on all day. I have been really disappointed with a few things that I have ordered when I am ordering toddler clothes (from Hanna or ON or wherever). But maybe that is just because I need curated choices.

      • avocado says:

        I find lots of cool things for myself while shopping for my child at Nordstrom. Hee hee.

        …but also ON.

  3. whitney says:

    Moms whose babies only slept in their arms… How did you transition them away from it?

    My three week old will only sleep 20-45 minutes in the rock n play. He is currently being held in shifts nearly 24 hours a day so that I can get some sleep. He doesn’t like the crib, swing, bouncy seat, or boppy newborn lounger.

    Do I just need to suck it up for a few nights, consistently put him down and hope sleep lengthens? Help.

    • are you swaddling? For both of my kids, using the summer infant swaddleme infant wraps. They also seemed to do better without me when they got more skin-to-skin with me (does that make sense?), so I really liked kangaroo shirts. good luck! it gets easier :)

      • mascot says:

        Friends of mine would also “scent” the swaddle blankets by sleeping with them under their shirts. Baby wearing helped us. We also did a lot of the happiest baby techniques (baby swaddled, in the swing, with some white noise)

      • whitney says:

        We’ve tried both. He’s been fighting the swaddle so it ends up too close to his mouth for my comfort. I think we need to size up and get consistent. My first was a super intense baby but at least slept some in the RnP. I feel like I am going to die.

        • I would try a different swaddle/swaddle technique. The Summer Infant is pretty easy to use but I liked just using swaddle blankets and wrapping the baby like a burrito in them. You can also wrap them lower this way, so no mouth/blanket issue, if that’s a concern.

          And I’d try to break baby of this habit. It’s easier to give in but it won’t be better for anyone, inc. baby, in the long run.

          • (was) due in june says:

            Team Aden & Anais swaddle blanket here too. You don’t have to worry about sizing or fit because you do it yourself.

        • Try the Swaddle Strap. My baby sounds a lot like yours. Only one that worked for us. I also would wear it around so that it smelled like me. Don’t use it cosleeping–see my notes below on that. You are giving me flashbacks to my child’s newborn days. They were so tough. I remember being so jealous of the moms that had babies that slept in swings, strollers, the car, etc. Not mine!

      • Anon in NYC says:

        The Miracle Blanket was a godsend for us. The first night we used it we got our first stretch of decent sleep. My daughter could break out of every other swaddle. If you’ve tried swaddling and your kid hasn’t seemed to like it, try again. My husband was convinced that my daughter didn’t like swaddling in the beginning, but we introduced the Miracle Blanket at around 4 weeks and never looked back.

        • Closet Redux says:

          Second recommendation for the Miracle Blanket. Our first was a total houdini and would bust out of even the most expert swaddle and subsequently wake herself up. The Miracle Blanket was amazing and totally baby-proof.

        • EB0220 says:

          Yes, we loved the Miracle Blanket as well!

        • Rainbow Hair says:

          Same. A friend mailed us one and it was like [[sound of heavenly chorus]]

        • Anonymous says:

          +1 – great for my long baby, who could break out of my A+A swaddle in minutes from birth

    • Anonymous says:

      Babywearing! They fall asleep in the carrier and often you can put them down in the crib (or let them sleep in the carrier while you cook/do laundry etc.

      I used a Baby Bjorn original – not popular in the babywearing community now but I found it the best for transfers because it unclips all the way around so I just unclipped it and left it under baby when he was lowered into the crib.

      I also really like my Ergo but that one is trickier for transfers, but the hood means they can nap there easily.

      You can also let him sleep on his belly if you’re next to him and can keep an eye on him.

    • I’m sorry – that’s so hard, and my kid was the same way, with the added bonus of needing to be walked around and bounced. For us, things got a lot better at 5 weeks. The rock n’ play was helpful at times, but other times didn’t work. I would just keep trying it. 3 weeks is still very little, and he probably just needs to feel close to you and/or dad still. As he gets older, he will get used to things “out here”. Hang in there. It’s very hard but you will get through it.

    • avocado says:

      Mine would only sleep in my arms during the day, but at night she would sleep in a pack-n-play right next to my bed. That seemed to provide the proximity she needed, especially since I could reach over and put my hand on her. Until maybe three or four months I also had to sit up with her feeding her nonstop until about 1:00 a.m. before I could put her down, but after that she would sleep some. She would never sleep in the swing or bouncy seat. She eventually developed decent nighttime sleep habits and we were able to move her to the crib in her own room at 6 months, although she was always a terrible napper. Have you tried putting him down in a bassinet or pack-n-play and leaving your hand on him for a while? And are you swaddling?

      Don’t despair. Three weeks is still very early on and things evolve quickly at that age. Hang in there!

    • EB0220 says:

      For daytime, babywearing is really great. For a baby that little, I think the moby or similar stretchy carrier is best. Ergo type carriers are great when they’re older but he’s too little now. For nighttime, is the rock n play next to your bed? Any chance you can get help one or two nights a week? I had a postpartum doula come for one night when I got food poisoning when my first was about 3 weeks old and it was heaven.

      • whitney says:

        I’ve been babywearing for at least one nap a day (in a ktan). Can’t transfer out of that though.

        I can muddle through the day but night is the real issue. Tried the RnP right next to me and even bought the autorocking one. I end up sleeping on the sofa with him which I know isn’t safe. I’d consider co-sleeping but can’t really figure out how.

        My mom has been here and holds him the first part of the night to try and get me some sleep. She leaves Monday. She’s basically been our night nurse. I owe her big.

        The sleep deprivation, crying and frustration are leading me down a PPD hole, something I experienced with my first.

        • Re: co-sleeping, I co-slept with each of my kiddos. My first was intense and wouldn’t sleep unless he was physically touching me, so that’s what we did. I put a bed rail on my side of the bed and he slept between me and the bedrail. I slept in warm clothes so that I didn’t need much in the way of blankets. I actually cut the chest out of an old, tight turtleneck and put a t-shirt on top for max warmth and access. I had a thin pillow and slept curled around him. When I layered on BFing lying down with this plan, I finally got some sleep.

        • You can cosleep safely. Google a few tips. The couch is definitely not as safe as an intentional cosleeping space that you set up for you and the baby. Please consider moving off the couch.

          Basically, just make a room warm and sleep on a nice firm mattress. Preferably, away from your spouse so that it is just you and the baby on the bed. I’m paranoid, so I didn’t use any blankets or pillows and just cranked the heat up and wore leggings and socks. After a week or two, I added a small baby blanket below my waist. My husband also set an alarm and would come check on us every two hours or so.

          If your doctor will judge you for cosleeping, just don’t tell them. And stand up to your mom or your husband, if they don’t like it then they can figure out a way to safely hold the baby while you sleep. We tried the sleeping in shifts thing too, but it only lasted for a few days since I had to feed the baby every 30 to 90 minutes.

          Finally, I don’t mean to be harsh, but I just feel I should mention this again. Please consider setting up a bed or mattress on the floor for cosleeping. Falling asleep with the baby on a recliner or the couch has so much more risk.

          I place a lot of blame on the medical community for putting babies like yours at risk. By being so adamantly opposed to cosleeping, doctors have forced parents try their best not to cosleep. But when the parents have a newborn that refuses to sleep any other way, the parents fall asleep on a recliner or a couch with the baby, which is so much more dangerous than just intentionally cosleeping with the baby. It would be nice if all babies slept in a rock and play, swing, crib, or anywhere else besides on their parents, but some babies just didn’t get that message. So you’ve got to meet them where they are at.

          • layered bob says:

            My oldest also would not sleep anywhere but in my arms/head tucked in my armpit for the first several months. Co-sleep in your bed.

            Also technically you are not supposed to swaddle and co-sleep, but we did after the first three weeks or so – the baby between DH and me, firm mattress, light cotton blankets tucked so they could go only up to our waist, flat pillows pulled way to the side of the bed, away from the baby. The swaddle helped her feel wrapped up enough that she didn’t need to be touching me while I slept, which meant I could actually sleep.

            I will also admit to wearing the baby in the wrap while I napped in the la-z-boy during the day, if the baby fell asleep in the wrap and I also wanted to nap without waking her up. I would prop a pillow on either side of the chair (kind of behind my arms/shoulders so I couldn’t accidentally lean to one side or the other), lean the chair back just very slightly so my head could rest, make sure the baby was positioned properly in the wrap, and set an alarm on my phone to wake me every 15 minutes or so to check positioning.

            Intentional co-sleeping is way safer than accidentally falling asleep on the couch or being super, super sleep-deprived.

          • Edna Mazur says:

            Co-sign all of this. My first would not sleep or tolerate not being held for the first few months. Life got much better when I started cosleeping. One small pillow, warm room, no blankets.

            I actually slept with the baby perpendicular to me and his legs on me and my hand resting on him. That way if I rolled, it was onto his feet. I co-slept with my second as well and for what it’s worth never rolled onto either.

        • Anonymous says:

          Please don’t co-sleep on a sofa, it’s more dangerous than having baby in a floor bed. You can safely co-sleep and it’s not too hard to set up a space. If you’re not able to convince your DH to set up the master bedroom (e.g. side car crib), just put a twin mattress on the floor in baby’s room, put the mattress up against the wall. Put baby between you and the wall. Sleep with blankets up to your waist and wear a cardigan so you can nurse. I’ll post a couple links separately to avoid moderation on this post.

          If you have a history of PPD I STRONGLY advise you to get some help via a post-partum doula. I suggest a doula over a night nurse as the night nurses tend to focus on the baby and post-partum doulas focus on mom as well.Some post-partum doulas do overnight work. If you post your location, someone might have a recommendation.

        • Spirograph says:

          I co-slept with my second and third (still sleep with him for a few hours most nights at 6 months) and wish I had with my first. I ended up just falling asleep with him in the glider a lot, which in retrospect was not as safe and certainly resulted in worse sleep for me.

          I agree with others who’ve said it already: co-sleeping is not bad when you do it intentionally and with safety precautions. My kiddos have always liked to sleep kind of in the crook of my arm with head/shoulders resting on my shoulder/upper arm. My lower arm makes a little barrier to keep baby in and husband and cats out. Plus, I can’t possibly roll in that position. I used a sheet and light loose-weave blanket and kept them around my waist when the babies were tiny, but I’m not as worried after 4-5 months. We have a king-size bed, so plenty of space between me and my husband; I switch sides throughout the night for both nursing and/or comfort. Biggest downside for the baby is that his head sometimes has an armpit/antiperspirant odor (more when I was on maternity leave than now).

          You’ll still have to train him to sleep in the crib someday, but imho 3 weeks is too early to start battling about that. Just learn to cosleep safely and enjoy being not-quite-so-exhausted. Hugs and good luck – those first few weeks are rough, but they’ll be behind you before you know it.

          • This is what I did too. I’m a firm believer that co-sleeping is better than sleep deprivation. I didn’t tell my doctors, I fought my DH, but I needed to sleep. I did the crook of my arm thing, let the babies cuddle in, and rolled with it. Since DH was more paranoid about it than I was, I told him to set alarms every so often during the night and check on us. He kept that up for about a week or two and then was too tired to continue (ohhhhhhhh the irony!) but never once thought the baby was in a dangerous position.

            Hugs to you – those first few weeks are HARD, even more so when you also have a toddler (or other kid). “Sleeping when they sleep” doesn’t work when you still have to function as a mom.

        • Sarabeth says:

          Agree with everyone that it’s better to just set yourself up for safe cosleeping. Here is a good set of guidelines:

          Also agree about the postpartum doula. I know this stuff can seem overwhelming in the moment. If you are willing to post your location, maybe someone has a recommendation?

          • Whitney says:

            These comments are so helpful and supportive. Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to respond.

            I am in Rochester, NY if anyone has postpartum doula or other resource recs.

          • Try Beautiful Birth Choices (

          • Anon in ROC says:

            Yes, BBC is great! I was in Rochester too until very recently. I don’t know if they do postpartum work, but if they don’t, they will know who in the area does. Highly recommend the Thursday Breastfeeding Cafe if you are nursing – even if nursing is not the issue, it’s a super supportive environment where you can get recommendations for lots of stuff, or just have a good cry if necessary. Lots of mamas there are co-sleeping. Allison, who runs it, is fantastic.

            I am also 99% sure that Adriana Lozada does postpartum work. Her agency is Birthful. Their website is down for me right now but you should be able to find her on Facebook. She’s good, and would also be supportive of the co-sleeping stuff.

            Let me know if you want to ask around for more recs – we moved away just a few months ago, so I still have lots of friends there that I can ask if you need more info. Good luck!

          • Anon in ROC says:

            There’s also a more comprehensive list of area doulas here, some of whom are listed as doing postpartum work specifically:

    • Mine was like this. SO ROUGH. We ended up cosleeping for about the first 6 weeks. It was the only thing that worked. After a few weeks, I could nurse/rock/bounce the baby to sleep, wait 10 or 15 minutes until she was really into the deep part of the sleep cycle, and then put her down in her bassinet. She would stay asleep in the bassinet for 3 to 5 hours, then I would have to start nursing/rocking her back to sleep, she would wake up again 35 to 90 minutes later, I would nurse/rock her to sleep, put her back in the bassinet, rinse and repeat until 4:30am to 5:30am, then start the day. I’m a night owl, by the way. This was complete torture.

      Daytime sleep was almost always in our arms (bounce to sleep, then baby would sleep 45 minutes, maybe an 1:20 if I was very lucky). Very occasionally the swing would work. Around 3.5 months, we started trying to do more naps in the swing or bassinet. I occasionally had to leave her to cry in her swing for a few minutes. Not for CIO, but for some of those moments where I had to put the baby down for 5 minutes and take some deep breaths or I was going to go bonkers because she was literally attached to me (or sleeping 6 inches from me in her bassinet) 24/7 for the first 4 months of her life.

      Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child saved us. I completely recommend it. Every baby is different, but it was pretty clear from day 1 that my baby would need more help sleeping than most other babies, and Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child was just what we needed. Weissbluth gets a bad reputation for cry-it-out methods, but his book was so useful for us. His was the only sleep training book that covered newborns like mine–i.e., those that absolutely had to be held and would not sleep independently–and covered the need to cosleep with the baby at that stage.

      Please also consider getting a mother’s helper to stop by a few mornings (or whatever time would be easiest for you to relax and trust someone else with the baby while you doze or just putter around the house without holding the baby). I really wish I had done this. It helps so much to just have someone else hold the baby for a few times a week.

      Hugs. Babies like this are very, very hard. It does get better. We saw massive improvement around 5.5 months after my baby’s due date, which is really common because the baby finishes up a lot of brain development at that point and starts developing more mature sleep patterns. I think this is why a lot of doctors recommend age 6 months for sleep training.

    • We tried at least four different swaddles, and my favorite was the Woombie, hands down.

      I had your baby – I held her almost every time she slept for the first month. We c0-slept. After a month I explained to her that she was going to have to suck it up, and we started with the Woombie in a rock and play at night, where she slept for the next two months. I still held her for her daytime naps until she went to daycare. Good luck!

      • Whitney says:

        Ive been reading up on safe cosleeping but the one time I tried it the baby just rolled into me. I’ll try our guest room and otherwise look into getting a twin mattress for the floor. I have 12 weeks maternity leave and having done this once before, I know things can change quickly.

        Three weeks is so little but I’m terrified that I’m at my limit so early. There is a long road ahead before we get to the good stuff.

        Again, I can’t thank everyone enough for the support and empathy. I posted to another mom’s group yesterday and ended up deleting the post because replies were so unsupportive.

        I’m truly grateful.

        • EBMom says:

          It is pretty natural for the baby to roll into you, so don’t worry about that. The baby wants to be touching you. Doctors Sears and McKenna have some information about cosleeping on their website. I don’t subscribe to all of their attachment parenting (seriously, I am a person with needs to and I can’t give up my whole self for the baby), but the cosleeping stuff may be helpful. The first few months are so hard, especially with a baby like yours. It does get better. Hang in there and hugs.

    • Anonymouse says:

      During the day, babywearing. I found the K’Tan easiest at that age — the structured carriers weren’t comfortable for her, and the wraps were too much work to figure out. If you don’t like it the first few times you try it, it’s probably too big, and you should get a smaller size. I was 5’9 and 170, and wearing the small.

      At night — cosleeping, at first. Sigh. She WOULD NOT sleep anywhere at night but in my arms. It was awful, I was so nervous about it that I would keep a nightlight on and just kind of doze. I kept trying the Rock and Play and one glorious night at 6 weeks, she went to sleep in it and slept through until her next feeding. It was amazing.

      She HATED the swaddle. It enraged her, so no luck there. We just had to wait it out. We did RNP until 13 weeks, then the Magic Merlin Sleep Suit in a crib, then out of the sleep suit around 5 months with no transition issues.

      If it helps, the first six weeks of cosleeping were AWFUL, but she started sleeping through the night at 13 weeks and is now an amazing sleeper! There is hope!

  4. Lyssa says:

    I like the theme. Is the quality of this decent? I generally only look for casual/trendy clothes from ON, since I find that they don’t hold up great for work stuff, but I could be persuaded to try this.

    • Midwest Mama says:

      I have had this for a couple years and the quality is decent. It’s still going strong – no fading, stretching, or pilling – and is very comfortable.

    • CPA Lady says:

      I’m such a grump about this, but I think with Old Navy the problem is the clothes made out of rayon. Those look like rumpled disasters immediately. I’ve been otherwise happy with their cotton and linen casual stuff for the price, and I got a ton of maternity clothes from them that I liked a lot.

      I just know that I’ll be disappointed if something’s made of rayon, so I steer clear, no matter how cute it is to begin with.

      • Kindergarten boy says:

        Right here with you on the grump re: material. I hate most synthetics anyway but rayon is the worst offender because it feels sooooo nice when you are in the store and it’s easy to fool yourself into thinking this item will be different because it’s so cute! And it never is better.

    • I have a couple of ponte and jersey dresses from ON that are a few years old. There’s some slight pilling but nothing terrible.

      I read on a fashion blog that if you treat your ‘cheap’ clothes like they are expensive (turn inside out and wash cold water, hang to dry, iron as needed, etc) that goes a long way in making them last. I have found this to be true for my Target/ON workwear.

  5. Looking for books or other resources to deal with young toddler tantrums.
    My daughter is 16 months and I don’t know how to communicate with her. I don’t want to capitulate every time she has a tantrum, but I detest tantrums. Likely some of her frustration is the ability to express herself, especially because she’s behind on language development.
    I flipped through How to Talk so Kids Will Listen, however it seems to be geared toward older toddlers. I’m halfway through Happiest Toddler on the Block.
    I try ignoring the tantrums, I try to explain (“no, dangerous”), I try to re-direct or divert attention. Nevertheless, there are tantrums all day. I’m hoping there are resources to teach me skills so I can deal.
    Thanks in advance!

    • A different tack: Does your daughter know any baby sign language? We found that teaching even a few basic signs was incredibly helpful, such as more, all done, milk, eat, mama, dada and dog. It can up their ability to let you know when some of those basic needs are not being met. It was pretty easy to do for all of us (two working parents and our nanny).

      • A little. She’s mastered “more” in sign language, and we’re working on “all done”. Mama and Dada she can say, however those words get used to mean a myriad of things. Dog she will say “woo woo” (like woof), but it also applies to any dog shaped creature.

    • October says:

      Is there something else at play? Is she tired, hungry, needing attention? My 19-month-old has his share of tantrums, but they get worse when he needs a snack or a nap. And if I’m giving him my full attention (which, I know, is hard) they rarely happen at all. Otherwise, I try to ignore/divert and they don’t usually last longer than a minute or two.

      • I feel confident that she’s more than adequately fed, and she’s easy to read for naptime.

    • I agree with the baby sign language, as Betty suggests. This might sound crazy, but also try to set aside some time each day (even just 15 minutes) and devote that time totally to her. Put your phone down, don’t try to get stuff done, resolve to just be in the moment with her for 15 minutes. Get on the floor and play, or walk around your house and narrate things for her, whatever. She will likely thrive from this attention, which hopefully will cut down on tantrums. Plus, you might become more attuned to some of her cues that you would miss if you weren’t focusing on her at that time. This won’t help with the tantrums itself, but might make them less frequent. Especially if she can count on this 15 minutes as just a regular part of her daily schedule when she knows she will have your full attention.

      • I agree with this. When I’m by myself and trying to do a dozen things at once, my son gets really cranky. When my husband or a grandparent is around, my son soaks up the individual attention, and there are no tantrums.

    • My toddler (now 22 months) throws tantrums a lot and has since about 14 months.

      I think there’s a difference between a tantrum where their emotions are just really high and they don’t know how to handle/express it and a manipulative tantrum where you don’t want to capitulate. When it’s based in frustration and he’s completely out of control, I know he’s going to have to work through it, and there’s no reasoning or logic that will get through. I try to move him to a safe place, give him his comfort items, and stay with him until he’s gotten it out of his system.

      I try to watch for the build-up, describe his emotions when he’s still in the whining/upset stage, and do what I can to divert or distract him. If your daughter’s tantrums are communication based, then I highly suggest sign language. My son’s daycare taught him a couple of signs (“more,” “please,” and “all done”), and we taught him “help.” The signs were really, really helpful until he got the language, and even now, he falls back on the signs when he’s getting upset. TBH, I was against the sign language at first, but it made such a big difference!

      • Pigpen's Mama says:

        There’s a How to Talk So Kids Can Listen for little kids.

        It’s geared towards toddlers/preschoolers, and may still be a little too ‘old’ for your LO, but I read through it and found it reassuring and helpful.

        Also, agree on the sign language — I think it helps a lot in that period when they want to communicate, but just can’t.

        • Thank you!

          • Alexandria, VA says:

            I am not the original poster, but how do you handle manipulative tantrums? My kid is great on the weekends, but during the week, he throws fits both before and after daycare. He calms down the moment we get to daycare and sometimes fights leaving daycare.

          • My son is just starting to try manipulative tantrums. In my better moments, I will try to explain in simple language and divert. For example, at the park this weekend, Kiddo was having a hard time taking turns on the swings, but he was in control and clearly would have stopped crying if he could have gotten back on the swing immediately. So, I’ll say, “You had a turn on the swing, I know you’re sad, but now it’s Little Girl’s turn, and we can come back in a few minutes for another turn,” then steer him toward the bouncy bridge or something. I don’t let him have his way, but I think that most of the time it’s better to engage and empathize.

            This isn’t specifically tantrum-related, but I try to stick to a pretty firm routines on weekdays and go straight from one activity to the next. We also sometimes sing little songs during diaper changes or putting on clothes or pajamas. Kiddo hates getting out of the bath, so we let him push the drain and then let him watch the water swirl down the drain and say “bye bye water” until the tub is empty. He still whines when we take him out of the tub, but I just tell him the water is all gone, and he gets over it.

            The leaving daycare tantrums are hard. If I sense he’s really into an activity, I try to soften the transition by playing with Kiddo for a few minutes, letting him show me the toy he’s excited about, then telling him it’s time to go. His teachers are helpful and ask him to put the toy away, ask for a hug, say “bye bye.” Then I’ll give him some meaningless choices–“Do you want to hold your art? Do you want to walk or do you want mom to pick you up? Which car is ours? Where is your seat?” It takes 5 extra minutes, but a little patience goes a long way.

    • I don’t know. I kind of feel like tantrums are a thing at this age. You can detest them, but they’re going to happen. My twins are almost three now, and one of them has probably a half dozen tantrums per day still. (Counting tantrum as any crying/fussing/yelling that goes on for more than about 20 seconds.) He doesn’t understand WHY we have to go home now, or WHY he can’t have the raw meat on the cutting board, or WHY I won’t let him reach into the toilet to touch the poop. These things are really important to him and I’m telling him “no” and he has no capacity to understand why I won’t give him things he really really really wants (and at this age, they can’t really distinguish between want and need — imagine if the person you loved most in the world, and on whom you depended for everything, routinely refused to give you things you needed). I acknowledge his feelings, explain why things are the way they are, try to redirect, and then just ignore. This too shall pass.

    • I also cant stand tantrums. I have a kid who started them at 12 months and is still going strong a year and a half later, despite her being able to talk in nearly complete sentences. At this point, I put her in a safe place and walk away. She typically gets it out of her system in a couple of minutes.

      When my daughter was younger, her tantrums were more about uncontrollable bursts of emotion, and I just had to wait those out. She was truly out of control and there was nothing I could do or say to make it stop other than calmly wait it out and then hug her once it was over.

      FWIW, rational explanations, especially long ones, are useless to a child who is not developmentally capable of reason. You will just frustrate yourself if you expect those to work before age five or so.

    • layered bob says:

      I should really start working for Janet since I promote her enough. I don’t work for her; her perspective has just been literally life-changing for parenting my very high-needs oldest.

      • Thank you. I will check the website out.

      • + 1 for this rec. she has books too. I also liked a toddler book by… Tali someone? Saw the rec here and can’t remember the name or the author for the life of me. She is affiliated with Columbia University I think. Helped me take a step back, remember that they are still very little, and not to be too afraid of “giving in”

    • Walnut says:

      I’m here with you right now. We have been feeding more snacks to buy more happy time and less whining/tantrumming. Applesauce packets, teddy grahams and bananas are going over well. And he has to control them. Don’t dare try to hold that banana or, god forbid, cut it up. Peanut butter toast also brings ten minutes of “finger painting” fun. At this point, I’d rather clean up the peanut butter.

      We also have upped nap time. When the tantrums get to be too much, we go straight for bed. Two to three naps on the weekend are not uncommon. Walks in the stroller are also happening and we though going to the playground would be great, but that turned into an epic tantrum when we left.

      Good luck. I’m ready to start wearing ear plugs.

  6. Midwest Mama says:

    I posted here last month that DH and I have been TTC #2 for 17 months, and my OB had referred DH to a urologist, who lost his appointment. Anyway, many of you suggested we see an RE. Well, we did yesterday…and it looks like we will need IVF. So first of all, THANK YOU for your suggestions. I only wish we would have seen the RE much sooner. DH’s count was only 4 million, so the RE said she does not have enough to do IUI (despite my OB characterizing the count as “a little low” ugh!). But first, she wants to redo my bloodwork because it’s been over a year and do some bloodwork on DH to make sure there are no hormonal issues for him. Barring any that could be improved with meds, we will move to the IVF process. So second, any advice for us as we begin this process? I am, of course, concerned about the financial aspect of it. Did anyone look at any financing options? A quick google search tells me there are financing options available, but it’s hard to know if they are reputable.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      No advice, and I’m sorry that you’ll have to go through IVF, but I am glad you seem to have an answer!

    • bluefield says:

      one of the commenters (pogo) here recently did IVF, so she can speak to it better than I can. I thought about doing it (& still will if not pregnant in the next three months). It’s a hard process for sure, but I try to look at it positively: it’s only about 10 days of hard, followed by a small procedure and then waiting. When you consider the time and effort involved in IUI (which is 10 days of not so hard but could take several tries to work), it’s really not that bad.

      I’ve not done the hormone injections, but I’ve done a few trigger shot injections in my stomach and they don’t hurt at all. Much less painful than a blood draw.

      I definitely had sticker shock (I was quoted ~$12k). Will your insurance pay for some of it? Mine won’t until I have 6 IUIs, but yours may because of the low count. My RE’s office handled contacting insurance to find out. Insurance may cover the meds & that could be several hundred dollars in savings. And to put $12k in perspective, that’s like 4-6 months of daycare in a HCOL area. So it’s a lot, but in terms of what you’ll be spending once you have a baby, it’s a drop in the bucket.

      • haha you know it, I love to talk about IVF.

        $12K sounds reasonable. The procedures are about $3K each and you need 2. Then there’s the ultrasounds and drugs. The only thing my insurance didn’t cover was the Lupron trigger and that one shot was $300, so I can imagine all the other hormones (if not covered) would really add up.

      • Midwest Mama says:

        Unfortunately, insurance covers none of it, except the bloodwork we’re about to do. RE quoted $15k. EEK! Another $5k for the meds, but because I’ve known her since I was little, she said she can get me the meds.

        • bluefield says:

          That seems really high. I’m in NYC. The $12k covered everything, I think, and even a car service to the hospital for the egg retrieval.

        • That sounds about right from my experience a few yrs ago. I paid entirely out of pocket and the meds really added up. One shot was about $700. I think the total was about 20k. I also did a lot of acupuncture on top of that.
          Mine would have covered one or two additional cycles if the first one didn’t stick through to a viable pregnancy, which is why the cost was higher. I ended up with twins on the first try so I ended up overpaying for that insurance, but I was happy to only have to do it once and taking out some of the financial pain if I would have had to repeat.

    • Major hugs. IVF is hard. I think going into it knowing you’re going straight to that makes it a little easier, rather than having unsuccessful IUIs.

      General advice: Be open to it taking longer than the standard “protocol” calendar sheet they give you. That’s a best case if you respond to everything well. I kept myself busy the week before retrieval and before transfer, both of which helped me keep my mind off everything. I had OHSS with retrieval and had a million eggs (kidding, slightly), and even so was only massively uncomfortable the day before.

      Financial advice: Unfortunately I can’t help much on this; our insurance was really good. I do know that some women will give their leftover drugs to other women – over craigslist? facebook? not sure where. I would ask the clinic how they bill the ultrasounds vs the procedures to try and get an idea of what you’re looking at.

    • I did it twice. We had a severe male factor problem, in that my husband’s count was “substantially” lower than a million. We had to do IVF with ICSI (basically, they find specific, quality sperm and inject them directly into the egg). ICSI adds several thousand to the cost of IVF, so I wonder if that was included in what your RE quoted you. We paid roughly $14,000 each time, but that included ICSI. Plus, another roughly $2000-$2500 for the meds. They shouldn’t be more expensive regionally, as you can order them online. So, the only way they’d be $5000 is if your med line up was much different than most people’s. But, great that your doctor can get them for you.

      We financed both times. Basically, the RE’s office gave us the paperwork, we applied for financing, and we paid it off in a few years each time. It was totally legit and not a big deal at all. We had no insurance coverage, and the first time we did it, financing was the only way we could afford it. The second time we could have paid cash, but the rates were so low that we financed again.

      Advice: just be kind to yourself. It’s a weird, isolating process. People do not get it. It’s bizarre to find yourself giving yourself shots in the stomach in a random parking lot somewhere. I do think (although it’s just my anecdotal belief) that a male factor issue makes IVF more likely to work easily. But, YMMV, as that’s just what I told myself to get through. That said, both of my IVFs were successful. We transferred two embryos and got two babies, then we transferred two embryos and got one baby.

    • PinkKeyboard says:

      We did it twice for full cycles (about 15k all told including drugs) then a frozen transfer (about 4k plus 1k in drugs because I did a mini stim cycle for best odds). There is definitely legitimate financing, other fun tip depending on your patience… you can use your flexible spending medical $$ for it. I didn’t find it that bad, the appointments are time consuming but I got used to the injections and only had to do them at night so it wasn’t overly weird.

  7. Travel with two kids says:

    What would you do? I’m currently on maternity leave with our second kid; big brother is 2yo. My in-laws live overseas and I feel we should visit them while I’m on leave. My thinking is that it will be very hard for me to take vacation once I’m back at work (I used all my PTO for “maternity leave”) and it’s easier to go now before the baby is mobile. So if we don’t go now, it would likely be at least 18 months before the trip becomes feasible again. DH doesn’t want to go, saying it’s just too much to handle at this point. (To his point, it would be a very long trip with a 4 month old and 2.5yo.) My in-laws are elderly and can’t travel, and I fear that DH would regret it if one of them were to pass away without meeting the baby. Logically I know it should be DH’s call, but I feel a strong obligation to make it happen. Would you defer to DH and not go? Push DH to go?

    • Travel with two kids says:

      ETA: strong and entirely self-imposed sense of obligation. Maybe that’s the actual problem here.

    • Anonymous says:

      It depends entirely on how long the journey is. USA to Europe – I’d go and I have a lot of tips on how to manage (we did twins at 8 months plus 3 year old big sister – it was fine). But for somewhere longer than one 8 hour flight or two 4-5 hour flights, I would probably stay home and do lots of skyping/emailing videos etc. Could DH take a visit with just the 2.5 year old if he has vacation time available?

    • I also struggle with a self-imposed sense of obligation when it comes to my in-laws (who live in town, but I’m constantly worried DH will regret not doing this or that small thing, or that my in-laws will blame me for not doing something, which they never do). But I think it’s best to let your husband decide what to do/ how to interact with his parents. You’ve offered, and he’s said it’s not a priority for him. Whether he regrets that decision later is not yours to manage. So, yes, I think for something this big, you should defer to him.

      The flip side of this is that you can take some active role in developing or maintaining a relationship with your in-laws (assuming you and your husband generally have a good relationship with them). Skype them, mail them your older kid’s art work, share pictures with them, etc. And do it because (if) they’re good people and you enjoy your relationship with them and seeing their relationship with their grandchildren, not out of some self-imposed obligation.

    • Rainbow Hair says:

      I would push it, but I share that strong-self-imposed-obligation type outlook. I am going to say something nuts: could you go by yourself with the kids? OK OK I know that is nuts, but depending on what kind of 2.5 yo you have, it might not be THE most nuts thing ever. In my experience, people are very nice and helpful toward moms with tiny babies. And you wouldn’t be alone with them except while actually in transit. (I think this basically only works if you can do a direct flight. And if you really get along with your inlaws.)

    • Anonymous says:

      Having been in your situation, I’d probably go, but then, my DH would also probably be pushing to go. My 2 cents are that it’s honestly not going to get much easier to travel in the next couple years, so you might as well do it now.

  8. Looking for recommendations for books on newborns/parenting. I’m mid-week 39 and realizing while I read massive amounts of books on pregnancy and childbirth (and of course am now probably needing a c-section) I have zero idea of what to do with our baby once we leave the hospital. Ack. We took an infant care course but it was more CPR and stump care, not day to day living. I’ve heard the phrase “attachment parenting” but literally no idea what it means, what different parenting styles are, how you have different parenting styles for a newborn… just having some freak-out emotions at the moment.

    • Anonymous says:

      I really liked Happiest Baby on the Block. It’s pretty much the only baby book I read. I did put baby down asleep though a lot which he doesn’t recommend (still do that at age 2 – cuddles at the end of the day are my fav thing ever). The swaddling/swinging etc worked great for us. For BF – the La Leche League Book (The Womanly Art of BF) is great.

      There’s no right or wrong path for parenting. I followed a lot of attachment parenting stuff (BF, some co-sleeping, babywearing) before I’d heard the term. Just follow what works for you and your baby and you’ll be fine. We had the crib in our room for the first 6 months which is pretty common in Canada because that recommendation has been around for a while here.

    • Science of Mom. Good guide for the first year.

      Baby 411 for all sorts of basic stuff. Use it as a reference guide for various things. You don’t have to actually sit down and read it cover to cover.

      What to Expect the First Year. Really great to read month by month.

      Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child and Ferber’s Solve Your Child’s Sleep Problems. You will want to learn about baby sleep.

      Child of Mine for baby’s eating.

      How Toddler’s Thrive for when your baby is around 1 year old.

      The above list is what I used the most for the first 18 months. You will find your own parenting style, don’t worry about that. You will also learn that the baby has their own ideas about who they are, so even something that sounds perfect for you might not work for your baby. You’ll learn to roll with it. Good luck!

    • Heading Home With Your Newborn. It has all the practical stuff on feeding, diaper changing, infant sleep, etc., for the first couple of months. I’d start with that and then look at other books if particular challenges come up.
      I also used What to Expect the First Year as a reference.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’d wait to meet your baby! Lots of people suggested sleep books but then… I had a sleeper. I really didn’t need to learn about baby sleep! (Second was less so but what can you do). My daughter was also a pretty good breastfeeder so beyond kellymom didn’t really need anything. A lot of the subject specific books can be a little worst case scenario.

      I did like all the general overview and reference books though. Baby 411 was is awesome.

    • layered bob says: and her book, Respectful Parenting – this was the biggest touchstone and assurance to me in the early days of actually parenting. No Bad Kids was great as the baby got older and more willful.

      I also read the blog Precious Little Sleep and Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child, so I had a baseline on sleep knowledge, and then threw it all out the window as not applicable to my child or respectful of her needs and happily coslept for the first year+.

      +1 Child of Mine for eating.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m like the anti-attachment parent, so I’ll recommend Bringing Up Bebe (culture of parenting, also America sucks), Baby Meets World (actual science!), and The New Father: A Dad’s Guide to the First Year.

      I lurved The New Father, because it had sections on how to interact with baby/what games were developmentally appropriate. And it had sections for what “your partner” (me, birthmom) was going through hormonally each month. I feel like most mom books leave that out.

      For food, Tyler Florence’s Start Fresh cookbook (his sheet pan meals don’t work, but he takes you through adding textures really well), Make 3 Months of Babyfood in 3 Hours (which I didn’t use for recipes, because it is straight purees, but I’d check it out of the library because it has great time management and frozen food tips — still freeze tons of prepped food for 17 mo), and The Pediatrician’s Guide to Feeding Baby and Toddlers — got this because it is our pediatrician’s, but like the recipes, charts and amount suggestions (more than once I was underfeeding kiddo until I read the next section and was like, hah! she’d never eat a half cup of that! and then next day she did. #momshame)

      I also read Montessori From the Start, which influenced our decision to use a floor bed. It’s been good and bad. Not sure we’d do it again (if there’s a another kiddo, they’ll be sharing a room anyway).

  9. Closet Redux says:

    What sort of post-partum capsule wardrobe would you recommend? I am starting a new job a few months after having a baby. My pre-preg clothes either don’t fit or are impractical for nursing/pumping and I want to treat myself to a new mini-capsule to celebrate going back to work, but don’t want to go overboard since I won’t be at this size forever. I’ve never done the capsule thing and I feel like this is a good time to try.

    • Closet Redux says:

      This is for a business-end of business casual, btw.

      • I really liked button front shirts for pumping at work, whether actual button downs or tunic-types. Wrap tops are also popular. I would get 5 of those and a bunch of camisole tank tops (I liked Old Navy) to wear underneath. I don’t think you need actual nursing camis, you can just pull these down. And I’d get 2-3 coordinating bottoms, e.g., 2 pants and one skirt. If you like dresses, throw in a shirt or wrap dress. I think that should more than cover you. You can probably wear your blazers open with all of the above. If you normally wear a lot of navy or gray or black, stick to a similar pallette so that shoes and other accessories aren’t an issue.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      Personally, I found ponte sheath dresses in neutral colors + cardigans/blazers to be the best option for me. I could unzip and pull the dress to my waist, and it was easy to pump. The fabric was stretchy and could accommodate my larger chest (and ribs! ugh) and stomach, and it was machine washable, so I didn’t have to invest a lot of money into a temporary wardrobe.

    • bluefield says:

      If you have the cash, Eileen Fisher all the way.

    • Butter says:

      I was a fan of blouse and skirt over sheath dresses just because I was constantly cold and liked keeping my shirt on while pumping. While it’s a bummer, I’d plan on dropping a bit of change for some nice transitional pieces that will see you through your first 6-12 months, just because fighting with clothes was the bane of my existence and I wish I had just made a dedicated one-time effort instead of fighting it in small battles over the course of many months. If I could do it over I’d probably pick 1-2 base colors (black, navy, grey or camel), grab some workhorse pieces in those (skirts, pants if you wear them, dress or two) and then 3-4 accent colors and grab some cardis, blazers, shoes, and accessories in those colors. Create 10 outfits (the MM LaFleur style handbook says this is the max that anyone remembers), and then wear them on repeat, ad nauseum.

      Decision fatigue is real, and I’ve never experienced it more than in the first months back at work. Simplify simplify simplify. I’ve taken to making a clothes calendar for the month (based on 10 outfits) and just following it, give or take a rainy day or high-level meeting where I swap something in.

    • I really love Jojo Maman Bebe Breton nursing tops. I have three, two long sleeved and one short sleeveed, in navy, white, and wine. They are a heavy weight and nice under a blazer.

  10. Suburban says:

    Ugh-everyone in the world feels the need to ask if my kid has reached certain milestones-he hasn’t. We talked to his doctor, who said he’s behind the curve, but not to worry. Ok great so when people ask if he’s walking/crawling/climbing and I say, no he’s actually a bit behind for his age… they ARGUE with me. “Oh no he’s not…” I just want to scream “No, he is!” Ugh. I hate people.

    • I feel you. My son walked a little late, and there was no end to people commenting–either, “Shouldn’t he be walking by now?” or “He’s not behind at all.” I just smiled and said something like, “He’s a little late, but I think he’s so good at crawling, he’s not particularly motivated to try walking.” And he was a particularly fast crawler.

      • Anonymous says:

        Hah! My baby was a seriously good crawler and felt no need to walk until 15+ months. Luckily she’s on the small side so I don’t think anyone noticed she was “behind.”

    • NewMomAnon says:

      Aww. They are probably sensing that you feel a bit defensive about it and trying to “make you feel better,” but failing. One way to avoid that is to quickly divert – say, “Nope, he hasn’t done X thing yet, but he’s doing this awesome other thing and it always makes me laugh!” And then they’ll quickly talk about awesome other thing.

      I have to use this with my mom – she likes to pick up on kiddo’s negative traits and discuss them in great detail, and I hate it; the kid is 3, she’s learning how the world works and I’m learning parenting, let’s cut her (and me) some slack. So instead of getting into a big argument with my mom, I’ll quickly change the subject and talk about something kiddo is doing that makes me happy (right now it’s imaginative play, which is so much fun).

      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah my son is slow on movement but much more verbal than his sister was. So I just say, “Nope! He’s a slug! But he’s so much more chatty than his sister was at this age!” and then we get to all feel good about talking about something positive. Not that being behind is a negative, but I hate to feel like I’m complaining about him or getting impatient!

      • Anon in NYC says:

        Agreed. My kid was late on a few physical milestones. Part of me did feel defensive about it, and people who tried to be reassuring were also sometimes really annoying.

      • Suburban says:

        I feel doubly crummy now because you all think I’m defensive. Wrong place to vent.

        • NewMomAnon says:

          No judgment meant; sorry if my comment came off as unsupportive. Whenever something is a little different about a kid, people not familiar with the kid want to “neutralize” it because they think they are comforting the parent – it’s fine, it’s actually normal, no problem, don’t worry. But you don’t find that reaction comforting. Which is fine! If you want to avoid that reaction, you have to do a little conversation manipulation.

    • EB0220 says:

      My first kiddo was like this. When people would ask about x that she wasn’t doing, I’d just say: “Nope! She does things on her schedule and doesn’t care at all what anyone thinks!” She’s still like this at 5 – she’s in her own world and doesn’t give a hoot what others think she should be doing. I reframe this as a sign of self-confidence and independence, which I think is great – and I think that comes through in my answers….FWIW.

    • Rainbow Hair says:

      Here’s an awful story (shared in commiseration)

      I took kiddo to a class when she had just turned one. Trying to get her to socialize and maybe I could even make some friends. Enter Mary and Mary’s Mom.

      Me: Hi, I’m RainbowHair and this is Kiddo!
      Mary’s Mom: This is Mary. (sees Kiddo sitting on the floor) Kiddo doesn’t walk yet?
      Me: Um, no, not yet, but you know, she sure loves to talk! (because Kiddo was blabbing and I wanted to change the subject)
      Mary’s Mom: Well MARY has a hundred words.

      OK then… I was not trying to get into a milestone-off. Sheesh.

  11. shortperson says:

    any thoughts on the naya pump or any other recs of new age pumps i keep reading are about to come out? naya looks sleek but it’s a lot of $$$ and i already have a medela.

  12. Any recommendations for maternity bras? Or supportive nursing bras that would work? I have resorted to wearing sports bras all the time because I can’t handle underwires lately. I still have my Bravado nursing bras from my last pregnancy, but I find them to be too unsupportive. Any ideas?

    • shortperson says:

      i liked the cake line at nordstrom.

      • blueridge29 says:

        I tried the cake line for my second and also really liked their nursing bras.

      • +1 for Cake.
        I started above DD and have only gotten bigger from there (at 39 weeks now so I haven’t nursed in it yet). I found that Cake’s Cotton Candy style is way better than the Bravado I have in terms of fit and support. I do find I have to add pads in for some n*pple modesty though.

    • Ugh, I went to the lingerie department at M&S this weekend and the three women in the lingerie department were totally unhelpful so I’m in the same boat.

      I’m chair of the itty bitty committee, I wear bralettes from the GAP. I don’t know what to do with these things on my chest. I need help and they just made me feel really stupid. Thinking I might just order my normal uniqlo bra in a large rather than a medium, at least they are cheap?

      • NewMomAnon says:

        If you’re the chair of that committee, then I’m the vice chair. I made it through pregnancy wearing soft bras, first a size larger than my usual and toward the end, two sizes larger. I liked some Gilligan and O’Malley ones at Target, but if I remember right, you’re in Europe? I would try sizing up in your favorite bra first. You could also buy some soft nursing bras (or the night time bras), because then they’ll do double duty. I still wear my nursing bras on weekends because they’re super comfortable and offer more definition than my uniboob sports bras.

      • AwayEmily says:

        I lived in Uniqlo bras all through pregnancy and nursing. I just had several sizes in my closet and would switch out depending on how large/small I happened to be that month. I don’t think they are SUPER supportive but I was an A pre-pregnancy, B-C during, so I didn’t have all that much to support.

      • Anonymous says:

        IBTC members should try Uniqlo bras! I hate underwire and don’t need it, but was a uniqlo Medium during pregnancy and am now a small. The pull-on ones are SO COMFY!

    • Anonymous says:

      I’ve been pretty happy with the Jessica Simpson Full-Coverage Seamless Convertible Nursing Bra I got from Motherhood Maternity. I’m at 29 weeks now and have been alternating between two of these and a third from a generic brand since about 14 weeks. What I like: they’re wireless, they’re sized S/M/L (so I can expect them to grow with me a little), and they have a little more of a demi shape than my store-brand bra, so I don’t have to worry about it peeking out over the top of shirts and camis.

  13. Lactivist says:

    Thanks to those of you who mentioned Lactivist yesterday. I started it last night and could hardly put it down. What an amazing and important read!

    • bluefield says:

      I’m glad you’re enjoying it! I enjoyed it so much that I had a mom acquaintance who had this weird, violent reaction when I suggested it to her (she read the NYT review and went into a rage over its “anti-breastfeeding” stance) that I subsequently stopped hanging out with her.

      • Lactivist says:

        I’ve had to bite my tongue to keep from oversharing everything I’ve learned with anyone that is even remotely close enough to listen to me. It’s not anti-BF-ing at all! It makes me appreciate both options as a choice! The comment the author makes in the forward about how much we value a woman’s right to choose but yet how we feed our babies is framed as not a choice at all is so on point. Ugh!

        • bluefield says:

          I agree that it’s not anti-BF at all (the author breastfed all 3 of her children for more than a year each). That is part of the reason why my acquaintance’s reaction was so repellent to me. It is like how pro-choice people are not pro-abortion.

  14. Anonymous says:

    WWYD re Jobs?

    A. Current job – part-time in house job. I must spend that time in office – no remote working permitted. Very limited vacation, no sick time. Not flexible. Love my general counsel – we get along very well, and have a great, very friendly relationship. No (more) room for advancement unless she leaves (possible in the next few years), definitely no more money here. The work is not terribly interesting, but the daily job is enjoyable and extremely low stress.

    B. Job opportunity – part-time with a small firm. Able to work remotely. Very flexible. I’d probably make about the same as Job A, a little less, but with room for advancement and able to go higher based on clients I can bring in (have a few good prospects). The work would entail similar work to what I do now, but would require going back to billing, back to working for/answering to multiple clients, and having to “prove myself” to a new org. Unclear on things like vacation and sick time, but initial conversations talk about being able to structure your day around kid issues (cancellations, sick days, etc.)

    What do I do??? I love job b in theory, but had a rough few years out of law school in BigLaw and I’m gun shy about practicing again — especially as I’d be very client facing at this point in my career. Job A is easy and no stress, which is great. Sometimes I’m bored, but other times I’m thrilled that I never think about work when I’m not here. That said, we have two little kids, and are on the fence about 3. I like the idea of working remotely with a baby around, and as my kids get older, I wonder if the inflexibility of being in the office will become harder to handle.

    • Anonymous says:

      I would stick with Job A. The facetime requirements are hard but you have a great relationship with your boss and that is worth a lot.

      Going from 2 to 3 isn’t easy and having to deal with bringing in business to a small firm would be tough. Small firm pressures are quite different from big firms, maternity leave can be tricky when there are expectations around handling your own clients and the atmosphere can be very much eat what you kill. There is often not a lot of financial flexibility to float an associate through rough years. In my experience, working remotely with a baby around sounds better in theory than in practice. Now that mine are toddlers/preschoolers, I can rarely work at home. If they do not see the car leave, they know I’m home and will roam the house trying to find me. So either DH (or nanny if we had one) has to leave with them or I have to go into the office instead of working from home.

      If you’re bored at job A, can you address that in another way? Sign up to teach a class at a local college, focus on developing papers and publishing in a certain area of the law, volunteer with professional associations etc.

      • mascot says:

        Agreed. “Flexibility” is great in theory, but not in practice. It doesn’t create more time for you, it just means more expectations that you find the time to bill your hours. Sure, my law firm doesn’t care if I take 2 hours to go to a kid event, but I’d better be making that up in the evenings and wknds. Also, I can work remotely and am given all the tools to do so. Guess what, my laptop travels with me on vacation. Law firm advancement is no certain path. Advancement will very much depend on your receivables which in turn, probably means more work and stress. If you want to climb that ladder and pursue those ambitions, then take job B. But don’t kid yourself that it is more flexible or family friendly.

        • Anonymous says:

          REally, really good points — also, didn’t think about kids being at the house (my older two would stay at their current daycare, but relevant for a new infant). Does it change your mind if the weekly hour requirement is really, really low? like 15 to 25 hours low?

          • mascot says:

            Depends on how much control you have/want on setting those hours. Will you mind if the client’s matter means a slew of early morning meeting or they have a bunch of deadlines? Do those hours include time spent doing business development/CLE/firm work or will you have to do that in addition to your 20 billable hours?

    • NewMomAnon says:

      What type of practice would it be in the firm? Because I can tell you, no amount of “face time” flexibility would make up for the evening and weekend emergencies I have to field in my transactional practice. I have taken so many phone calls while driving kiddo to Saturday swimming lessons, turned out documents while rocking her to sleep at night, or passed her off to my parents for a couple hours on a Sunday so I could take weekend calls. And the nature of billable hours is that I only get paid for vacation if I’ve billed in excess of my weekly target some other week(s); so I essentially don’t get paid vacation. I think you’d probably be doing more hours of work each week for the same pay, and you’d lose that paid vacation benefit. That means your effective hourly compensation is dropping significantly.

      Also consider that if you will be client facing, the firm’s policies on face time and remote work mean nothing. Everything is dependent on your client’s approach to hours of business. I currently have a client that won’t communicate via e-mail and always calls my office before 8 am or after 5 pm. That same client frequently requests Sunday evening conference calls. And since it’s my client, there is no one to buffer or step in to cover an evening or weekend phone call. It’s all on me.

      If I could have the predictability of being in the office M-F 9-5 with limited but paid vacation, I would take it.

      • Anonymous says:

        Really good points from both – thank you. I really hadn’t thought about billing v. vacation/sick time. It would be advising small businesses on issues that in house counsel usually addresses. The firm partners have said repeatedly that they don’t take calls after hours or on weekends b/c of the type of work being done. But there’s no real way to know. Also, to your point, if it’s my client, I’m going to work on their terms.

        • Anonymous says:

          They would base this on their being in the office 9-5 M-F. If you’re only working two-three days a week (15-25 hours), will clients be willing to wait 3-4 days to hear back from you? Or would you be working every day 9-12 (15 hours)? I don’t see how you preserve flexibility without working at least some hours everyday and those hours can easily expand – like you work 9-12 but the client wants to meet at 2pm.

    • EBMom says:

      Job A all the way, especially if you are considering adding a 3rd. You can look for that flexible position after your kids are in elementary school, if you are still interested in that. Others have already pointed out some of the downsides of flexibility (client demands, always on, etc). I agree with looking for ways to add what is missing from your life from Job A and embrace that you don’t have to think about it while you aren’t on the job.

    • I am in Job B and would kill for Job A.

    • NYCer says:

      Interesting that most everyone seems to be saying Job A. I am in Job B (albeit at a bigger firm), and I love it! Granted, my practice area is very low stress and conducive to actual part time work (trusts and estates), but the flexibility of being able to work remotely really can’t be beat, if the job is otherwise low stress.

      Another anecdote for you…. I have a friend from law school who has two small kids and left a job B situation (except that it was full time) to go to a Job A situation and absolutely HATED the change. She went back to a firm within a year. Her in-house job was so strict with face time that she would have to take PTO every time she took kiddo to a doc appt, ran home at lunch, etc.

      Granted, billing is NO FUN whatsoever, but for me at least, I really appreciate the flexibility of my job.

  15. NoVa Mom says:

    It might be too late in the day to post this, but I’ll give it a shot. I’m looking for suggestions on how to get relief during a stressful time. My husband and I are both in the middle of busy work times (though honestly, we have demanding jobs so it rarely isn’t one of those times for at least one of us). Our 16 month old is adorable but also a 16 month old. He’s not a fantastic sleeper, he’s got limited communication skills (some words, some signs, but not nearly enough to tell us everything he wants), and he’s prone to tantrums. He’s also in daycare, so we’ve had our share of illnesses this winter. Oh, and I’m pregnant and have had a very rough first trimester that is now continuing into early second tri.

    We have no local family. We have a cleaning service every other week (and a lawn service in the spring/summer). We’re not totally opposed to more help, but we also cherish the little amount of time we have our son each day and are fearful of giving that up. Basically, we have the chaos of mornings (though these aren’t too bad since my son often wakes up at the crack of dawn, giving us plenty of time to get ready!), and then the total chaos of the evening, with getting home, getting him fed, bathed and into bed. Plus weekends, though we also have to fit in chores, errands, and any work either of us needs to do.

    We’re really struggling to hold it all together. Any advice? Right now we’re just waiting it out to hope spring and second trimester help with the illness issues. But the work stuff and the toddler stuff aren’t going away. And we’re not crazy – we know this is all just a precursor to when the second baby comes and it’s even more insane!! Help!

    • NoVa Mom says:

      Just saw the post above about 16-month olds and tantrums. Seems to be a theme today!

    • Betty says:

      Can you hire someone to bring your 16 mo. old home from daycare a few days a week and hang out a few hours? That person could do dinner for your toddler and give you the chance to either have a date night with your husband, run errands or take some time for yourself? We have our au pair stay on the clock until 7:30 once a week. My husband and I use it for a date night, which is often nothing extravagant (gym date or whole foods date). Plus, the bonus of knowing that we have one night off a week from the crazy hours (5-7pm) does wonders for our sanity.

      • EBMom says:

        We do the same and I can speak to the powers of having a weekly late night for working or catching up with spouse for a “date”. It. Is. Amazing.

    • Sarabeth says:

      This may be too obvious, but it seems like you should get more help doing the non-kid stuff. Grocery delivery if that’s not happening already. More housekeeping help – someone can come once/week and not just clean but also do some laundry and meal prep.

      • Anonymous says:

        This. Getting more help doesn’t have to mean less time with your kid.

        I have 3 and I get groceries delivered, 3 hours of weekly cleaning help in between my biweekly cleaning service (folds laundry, changes sheets, washes sheets/towels, vacuums house). Don’t try to cook every night – meal delivery for one meal/week, take out for another meal, slow cooker for third, frozen veg lasagna for 4th night etc.

        Also, diaper/wipes/kid soap auto-delivery via Walmart or Amazon.

    • First, hugs–you are doing great. Can the weekend chores & errands be outsourced? What about a mother’s helper or housekeeper to come and do dinner/clean up, so you can spend that time with the toddler. Do you have to do baths every night? After we had our second, we dropped to every other night (or so) and that seems to make our nights more enjoyable.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      Can you increase your cleaning service to weekly and have them also do laundry (or just have someone come into your house weekly to do laundry and keep the cleaning every other week)?

      Can you do online grocery ordering and either pickup/delivery? If you want to cook but hate planning meals, I’d recommend a meal planning service so you don’t have to think about food. Or, spend a little extra money and get the already chopped onions, etc. If you don’t want to cook, you could hire a personal chef to prepare and deliver meals for your family (this seems like it would be amazing).

      I always find evenings to be harder and more chaotic than mornings. It’s just nonstop between rushing from work to daycare to home to feeding the kid to bedtime… and then feeding myself, getting ready for the next day and bed. UGH. I’ve mostly stopped cooking for my kid on weekdays and prepare food for her on Sundays and just warm it up when we get home from daycare, so dinner for her is usually on the table 10-15 minutes after walking through the door. Then we can have some play time before bed. If I need more food for her, I’ll make it after she’s in bed. I try to make one new thing for her a week, but she also has staples that she’ll get on a weekly basis, like black beans or pasta. I’ll also feed her leftovers from our dinners.

    • Anonymous says:

      Hire a college kid to run all your errands, do meal prep (chopping, putting water on to boil, etc) and pick up kiddo two days a week.

      When I was in college I did this. At some point I started copy-editing work for both parents, answered phones at the dad’s small business, wrote website copy, waited around between classes for workmen, etc. Whenever I needed some extra cash I’d ask if they had any big projects to do. I did Christmas shopping, wrapped presents, deep cleaned kitchen cabinets, took clothes to Goodwill, watered plants when they were on vacation. My schedule changed every semester, so me not being the dedicated child picker-upper made it work.

    • EB0220 says:

      Streamline as much as possible. Do online grocery ordering or grocery delivery. Easy dinners (<10 min prep). Definitely see if you can find someone to help with laundry. Have a babysitter come 1-2 nights a week after the kids are asleep so your and/or husband can run errands, go to the gym or just have a drink. You will be so much more efficient running errands without kiddo and zero guilt because he'll be sleeping. Also – hang in there. I found this age (about 12-18 months) to be REALLY hard with both of my kids. Around 18 months, they turned the corner and were able to communicate more. Also – and I know it's hard – I feel best when I just do nothing but focus on my kids for that short period between getting home and bedtime. Turn off the cell phone, ignore the chores, clear my mind and hang out with them. To be honest, we let a lot of things go. In short – I would farm out everything non-kid-related that I could in favor of more quality family time.

    • Momata says:

      This is us, too, and I just keep holding on for when the illnesses stop and the days are longer and warmer. I would also try to outsource more of the non-kid stuff: handyman specials, grocery delivery, Subscribe and Save for nonperishables. I also do all my chores and cooking and lunchpacking etc after the kids go to bed.

    • NoVa Mom says:

      Thanks all. Some good suggestions here. Silly question – where do I go about looking for a person do to the non-kid stuff? I can check with our current cleaning service about what else is offered there, but otherwise where do you find a college student or other person to help with other things you want to outsource?

      • NewMomAnon says:

        I thought had folks offering those types of services. Locally, I know one of the colleges (a women’s college) actually has an employer form specifically for people looking for college kids to provide household help.

    • Strategy Mom says:

      Could you switch from daycare to a nanny? Might make financial sense once you have the other kid. Our nanny cleans the house and does laundry and errands and it’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me. We also save the cost of a cleaning lady

  16. waiting for words... says:

    My 15 month old isn’t talking yet other than “mamama” and “dadada”. He will imitate a few sounds, and seems to understand basic directions to show me a body part or sit down, etc.

    Does this still seem to be in the range of normal or way behind in language development? He has his ped appointment in a couple weeks, so I’ll definitely as then.

    • We had our 15 month appointment a couple months ago and our doctor said they were looking for 3-5 words, and also gave her a few simple directions. So I think that sounds like it’s about normal.

      • This is what we were told at the 15th months appointment too and the doctor also said that her definition of a word is different than ours is. So if your kid is going “ba ba ba” that can count as a word even if parent hasn’t figured out what kid is referring to. She said by 18 months they are looking for 10-20 words.

        Based on my daughter, I’d say it’s pretty normal (or at least we’re not panicking yet). Also: if you asked her grandparents the same question, they would have told the doctor that she says at least 10 words already (communicative grunts count, right?). So some of this is subjective. A good friend of mine recently said her daughter started talking at 7 months and having known her daughter at this time I would say that’s not even a little bit accurate. Point being – don’t worry and don’t listen to other people too much.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      That sounds like it’s within the range of normal to me, particularly if he’s babbling and seems to understand basic directions.

    • Anonymous says:

      There’s a post on Alphamom about this today! I’ll link in reply.

    • bluefield says:

      I think that sounds completely normal. Around 18 months is when they get a language explosion and learn a bunch of new words. Before then it’s pretty minimal. I think my kid knew at most 20 words at 17 months (when she had her explosion) and she’s always been ahead of the talking curve.

    • NewMomAnon says:

      15 months is early for speaking – my kiddo has always been ahead of the curve language-wise, and I think at 15 months she had maybe a dozen words or signs.

      Although between 15 and 18 months, it became clear that some of the “babbling” I heard was actually her trying to formulate a word. For instance, she had multiple versions of something that sounded like “dada” but her versions were actually dog, doll, daddy, down, and probably some other things I don’t remember. And she would frequently say “ababa” but it took me a while to figure out that meant “star.” And she had made up her own sign language to ask for music or being upside down, which I didn’t realize for a while. So your kiddo may have more words than you realize (which is part of the reason 16 months is a key time for tantrums).

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