Building a Breastfeeding Log When Not Breastfeeding

I’m planning on exclusively pumping for Norton.  I’m also hoping that I’ll develop a massive stock pile and will be able to quit pumping months before he stops consuming breast milk.

Based on everything that I’ve studied and researched, I’m realizing that building a breastfeeding log will be crucial to making this a successful process.  For example, a breastfeeding mom might keep track in her breastfeeding log what time she breastfed and which breast she emptied.  She might very well keep track of what she ate in case she’s noticing that baby is becoming fussy, gassy, or pukey at certain feedings.

Well, since I’ll be feeding baby breast milk, but not “straight from the tap”, it seems that it will be even more necessary to keep an adequate breastfeeding log.  If I have a sufficient supply built up so that I can stock pile in the freezer, there’s a very good chance that I will not remember what I ate.  So, I figure that I’ll have to have a few things in my breastfeeding log to make it useful.Building a Breastfeeding Log When Not Breastfeeding (Cloth Diaper Addicts) #breastfeeding #breastmilk #WorldBreastfeedingWeek

I’ll need to keep track of what I ate between pumping sessions in case something is throwing off the milk quality or having unpleasant side effects for Norton, particularly if he’s drinking breast milk that’s been in the freezer for a week.  I’ll need to keep track of how much I’m pumping so I can figure out if there’s a correlation between supply and nutrition.

Then, of course, there’s what I’d have to keep track of for Norton.  When was his bottle pumped?  What time did he eat?  How much did he eat?  Are there any adverse reactions due to my eating habits?  How many wet or poopy diapers did I have to change?  When are these things occurring?

Fortunately, my mother-in-law gave me a lovely suede-bound journal for Christmas.  Before I started blogging here, I used to keep a yearly journal for posterity.  I figured that once I was gone, I’d have descendents that might appreciate the living history lesson.  Plus, it also housed information on family traditions and stories passed down.

But this year, that book will end up being Norton’s maintenance manual.

Did you use a breastfeeding log?

Originally written for What to Expect on March 1, 2010.  Instead of a book, I used an Excel spreadsheet, and I logged everything for the duration of our exclusive pumping.

Image courtesy of Jomphong / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


About Suzi

Suzi is an American ex-pat living in British Columbia. She's a cloth diaper addict, wife, mom of three, and President of the Prince George chapter of Cloth for a Cause.

Comments

  1. Trista M. Laborn says:

    Great tips! Thanx for sharing!

  2. This post reminds me of my ‘pumping days’. I didn’t have enough milk and the baby was not latching properly. I used to keep a journal up until my son was 3 months old.. Once things became normal, I stopped writing things down. By then, everything became second nature 🙂

  3. Rachel A. says:

    I pump exclusively and have for 6.5 months now since my son was born. I found in the early months I had to pump 6-8 times a day in order to build up my supply. I did this until my son was 3 months old and then I backed down to 5 pumps a day. I’m now at 4 pumps a day and feeling good. I have a large stash (1500 ozs) that I only dip into every now and then. I have also donated about 500 ozs to another mother. At my peak I made almost 50 ozs per day and right now I make about 30. I would recommend using the Milk Maid app for iphone, not sure about other phones. But it was a great way to keep track of my pumps and milk supply. I don’t use it anymore, but it was great during the first 3 months! best of luck to you pumping mama!

  4. I did keep a log while I was pumping and breastfeeding. It was vital for us to determine my daughter’s allergies.

  5. Leela R. says:

    I too recommend the milk maid app. I have been breast feeding for almost 6 months now and recently returned to work. Milk Maid has been great for helping me keep track of my growing freezer stash, and now that I’m pumping and bottle feeding it keeps track of where the milk is (work/home/daycare).

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