breastfeeding, children, nursing, Parenting, parents, snow, survival, USA weather, weather

Breastfeeding in extreme weather… What difference does it make?

Living in the USA, you see every day some sort of extreme weather in some parts or another, from east coast to the west coast.  The most recent one of all is of last few days, the snow near the great lakes in northern New York.  It is devastating for the people involved in these natural disasters.  People trapped in their homes and more dangerously, in cold vehicles up and down the highways for up to 40 hours in some places.

On the other end of the scale, during the summer months there were masses of tornadoes that demolished towns and cities. Leaving destruction of emotional and physical life beyond comprehension. Destroying homes, families and businesses. Yet people still survive in these places. It’s their home. It’s what they know.

Unfortunately, due to climate change, these freak of weather events are becoming the norm, and not in a good way. Extreme weather is reaching the most quiet and calmer corners of the world. Even to the people who are NOT used to these harsh conditions. So why am I writing this blog? What has breastfeeding got to do with this?

I am a proud mother of six beautiful children. All of which I have breastfed for different lengths of time for various reasons. I am currently nursing my youngest, who is now eight months old. As I was watching the weather channel and thinking about all those people trapped in their cars in the snow, literally buried alive under all that snow, it got me thinking about the breastfeeding benefits if you was caught in any extreme conditions.

I am a big breastfeeding advocate, but in no way ever do I think of a formula feeding mother to be any less of a person for her choices to feed her baby. People make choices based on what they know and circumstances in their life and that is okay. I just personally choose to breastfeed. That was the right choice for me. I do believe however that in a serious state of emergency, a mother might have a better chance to save her infant in extreme situations if she was to breastfeed.

Imagine this. You are traveling to be with family for the holiday season and on the highway you are caught in a white-out situation. Before you know it, your car is covered in snow half way up to the windows and you have no way out. You call 911 and you wait for help to arrive. You have this helpless bundle in the car seat who is depending on you for his or her survival. What do you do?

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A breastfeeding mom can offer comfort and support through nursing and body warmth will keep baby warm and comfortable. As well as that. The baby will have on tap all the food and nourishment it needs to survive. Mom is a walking incubator for baby with warm, fresh milk available until they get rescued. How is this different to a formula fed child? Yes, a mother might have two or three bottles in the bag, and might even carry a car bottle warmer to heat up the bottles. But what if as these people in the news, trapped for 24, 36 or even 40+ hours? How any bottles is needed then?

Breastfeeding mothers will also provide antibodies for the child to prevent them getting sick in the cold and possibly damp conditions.  Her body will naturally asses the situation and will produce whatever that infant needs to survive.  That will include any milk fats or extra vitamins that may be required in the milk.

I know that so many women choose to feed formula for various of reasons, but if I could encourage even one mother who lives in these areas to “consider” or just even “try” to breastfeed if it is possible for them to do so, in the event of these type of natural disasters to occur, that they are the best possible position to ensure survival. Yes, this is a strong word, survival.  Life or death.  It is like something you see out of a movie or something.  But these type of weather we are currently experiencing is becoming more dramatic and real, and sadly more often.

buffalow weather 1                   buffalow weather 2

Can you even possibly imagine what these people are going through right now?  We see so many images of these snow, but does anyone even stop to think of the children here?  And the babies that require emergency supplies?  Do any of us carry an emergency kit in our cars for such an event?  To either help themselves or to help others in distress? I know we should, but sadly, most of us don’t. We all think it will never happen to us and that we will all be ok.

I feel a chill right to my bones to even imagine being trapped in my car with my children in a white-out blizzard, trying to keep everyone alive and warm. Especially if there is an infant involved who does not eat solid food.  What are you to do when you are alone out there in a small confined space of a car? Help is on the way, but it wont be immediate.  You can call or text as much as you want, if it is a white-out situation, no helicopters can come and no one can see where they are going to come by snow-mobiles.  Its a matter of sitting, waiting and praying that you all survive.  I feel strongly about this particular situation, maybe because I am a nursing mother?  The maternal instincts are strong to make sure your babies survive?  I do not know for sure, but it pains me to watch the weather of all these helpless people needing help and people know they are there, but no help can get to them.

We need to normalize breastfeeding and save more lives every day. If you are pregnant or know of someone who is about to have a baby.  Or a mother who just needs support to keep going with her breastfeeding.  Reach out and help them. Encouraging words mean everything. Families mean everything and too many families do not help one and another.  Reach out and help normalize breastfeeding today.

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Family, Food, Wales, Welsh

Family heirloom, Welsh Pancake Recipe

I was born on a small island in North Wales, the isle of Anglesey.  There I grew up with the usual traditional Welsh foods thinking nothing of it.  That is until one day I went to school on shrove Tuesday and realized that we did not eat these “pancakes” that they was serving at school.  They was too flat and tasteless to be pancakes.  Every year after that, my mother make pancakes for me to take to school, not that she was not already making tons of them already, but she was good to me like that.  I used to take a whole “batch” (full one mix worth) to school with me and share them around my class mates.  I was remembered every pancake day for years after.

As I was growing older, I also realized that a lot of the foods that I was eating was the old school traditional Welsh foods.  Once again I did not think too much into it because I am Welsh and we lived in Wales.  After leaving home to live my own life, I learned a lot about other people’s eating habits, it was not quite like ours.  That when the total realization hit me that despite many people were born there and was “Welsh” not many was living the Welsh life.  Both my parents and all my grand parents and everyone I ever knew in my family tree went back to the celts. Well I was always told that the pancakes we ate was the real Celtic version and had been passed down from generation to generation in our family for hundreds of years.  After that, I appreciated more of what I had taken for granted all of my life.  We all hear about the Welsh tea cakes and the cawl and so on, yes, they are the stereotypical of the Welsh cuisine.  You do not hear much about the traditional Welsh pancakes, that is until you talk to the old Welsh people.  A lot of the English people came to live in our area as I turned into the teens.  Many traditions was lost and everyone wanted to be in the cities.

I am going to share with you all our REAL WELSH PANCAKE recipe and instructions on how to make them.  The reason is, it is the most oldest and original piece I have from my family, my past and I do not want the real Pancakes to be missed and forgotten by people.

Ingredents

Welsh Pancakes

Welsh Pancakes

1 lb Flour (I now use self-raising flour but you can still use all purpose flour and baking soda)

1/2 lb Sugar (granulated)

4 medium eggs

1 pint of milk

1 stick of butter

Now back in my day, we used to make these on the hotplate of the AGA/Rayburn we had in the kitchen which in my opinion, is the best way to cook of all time, but these days a non-stick frying pan on a stove does the same trick.

Instructions

Put the flour, sugar and eggs in bowl and mix as much as you can.  I used to do it all be hand, but now I use an electric hand mixer.  It is tough on the wrists because there is a lot of flour in comparison to the eggs at this point.  Mixing it thoroughly is always important, especially at this early stages.

In another pan, pour in 1/2 of the milk and the stick of butter, warm over a hot stove until the butter has melted.  Once butter is melted, remove from heat and add in the remainder of the cold milk.

Now this is the most crucial part… add the SOME of the milk mixture to the flour mixture and blend in completely and smoothly, add a little more and mix in thoroughly and so on until all milk and flour mixes are totally combined.  By this stage, if the milk has been added gradually and mixed in thoroughly each time, then the final mix should be completely smooth and no lumps at all.  This is the difference in the final taste and quality of the pancake.

Cover mixture and leave in the fridge for an hour (or over night if you want them for breakfast).  Preheat a non-stick frying pan on medium heat. I add a tiny bit of butter for the 1st pancake to get made, after that it is not required.  I use a laydl and put some in the pan.  You wait until you see bubbles appear on the top side of the pancake.  Carefully flip over and cook for less than one minute.

CONGRATULATIONS!  you have made your 1st Welsh pancake…..  One of these mixes should make 30 medium or 40 small pancakes.  Needless to say these do not even touch the sides with my children and I frequently make a batch for breakfast.  Hope you enjoy your Welsh pancakes.

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Breastfeeding in extreme weather… What difference does it make?

With all this winter weather, this keeps me thinking.

Custom Embroidery and Gifts

Living in the USA, you see every day some sort of extreme weather in some parts or another, from east coast to the west coast.  The most recent one of all is of last few days, the snow near the great lakes in northern New York.  It is devastating for the people involved in these natural disasters.  People trapped in their homes and more dangerously, in cold vehicles up and down the highways for up to 40 hours in some places.

On the other end of the scale, during the summer months there were masses of tornadoes that demolished towns and cities. Leaving destruction of emotional and physical life beyond comprehension. Destroying homes, families and businesses. Yet people still survive in these places. It’s their home. It’s what they know.

Unfortunately, due to climate change, these freak of weather events are becoming the norm, and not in a good way…

View original post 904 more words

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Are we keeping our children safe UPDATE

Custom Embroidery and Gifts

I recently wrote a blog about keeping our children safe on the streets. I received a great response with people interested in getting teenagers especially to respond to safety measures that we as adults see.   In my spare time, I went ahead to create more items that could be beneficial  to children’s safety.

Children can decide and choose their own designs for the high visibility Children can decide and choose their own designs for the high visibility logo. Prices $3.50

All badges come with their own iron-on adhesive backing so no more sewing!!!  Prices from $3 - $4.50 All badges come with their own iron-on adhesive backing so no more sewing!!! Prices from $3 – $4.50

All these items are high visibility products. All work I do to create these items still drives me to do good and save lives. I sell these items via etsy.com but always open to anyone to approach me if they want custom items made for them. Badges and bags, they are all less than $5 each. Affordable to everyone who is interested in applying…

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Custom made, Parenting

Embroidered high visibility badges

So, it started like this, I wanted to make something for my children to reinforce safety.  I was so extremely passionate about this safety issue that I even started a campaign on this very issue.  Especially targeting teenagers and parents.  I made some high visibility clothing with teenagers very own designs on them, encouraging them to come forward with their own images and to be encouraged to wear these safety clothing.

 For the little ones, I designed some very simple badges or patches as some people like to call them.  The designs themselves was of no great significance, but the special fabric backing that I am using is important.  This is because it is high visibility fabric.  This meant that children everywhere could also bring me simple designs and I would make them for them to put on their school bags, coats or uniforms.  As a matter of fact, they can be applied to almost anything.  The reason for this is because they have a IRON-ON glue backing that it extremely easy to apply and of course means NO-SEWING is required.  This is particularly good for any moms or dads who does not like to sew garments.  These easy iron-on badges can literally be put on anything and it immediately applies with a great strong bond that will last.

Then there was the questions about how it might endure the test of children at play or sports that would tare off this patch.  Well they have tested the test of time.  I decided to make a video of the simplicity of applying the patches and badges and their durability.  This is the only way to show people how easy these badges are.  The best part of all about these patches is the price.  Once you see how easy they are to apply, and their durability, you will certainly think that they must be expensive.  Especially with the knowledge that they are on special high visibility fabric too.  They cost from $3 and upwards because I decided that I would only need to cover the cost of these badges.  I would not see any profits at all on these.  The reason for this is that I could never put a price on a human life, especially that of a child.  Everyone deserves the opportunity for their children to be safe.  This is one the main reasons why I been negotiating with D.O.T. and other big agencies about the use of these badges..

Even to save one life with these badges is worth something.  To save many will be a blessing for everyone concerned.  We deserve to give our children the ability to stay safe on our streets today.

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