Back in 2006 I wrote about belly balls made by Ameda, and provided some ideas on making your own set. They're a great educational tool for showing how small a newborn's stomach is, which can calm new parents' fears that their newborns aren't getting enough milk in the early days. The Ameda belly balls aren't offered for sale, and have been hard to get unless you work in a hospital. The good news is that Childbirth Graphics is now selling their own version, called "Baby Bellies." Ameda recently revised the size of the balls (they're now bigger than the ones in my first post) and Childbirth Graphics' set reflects the new sizes.
La Leche League has released new breastmilk storage guidelines. A big thank you to Angela at Breastfeeding 1-2-3 for posting about them. The new guidelines say that breastmilk can be kept out at room temperature for 4 hours (ideal) to six hours (acceptable); in a refrigerator for 72 hours (ideal) to 8 days (acceptable); in a freezer for six months (ideal) to 12 months (acceptable). More information is on Angela's site.
Remember the Ideablob contest which I wrote about endlessly in January - the one which won the Mothers' Milk Bank of New England $10,000? I got about 10,000 gray hairs worrying about that one, but it all ended very well. Anyway, there's another breastfeeding-themed project in contention this month which deserves your vote. La Leche League leaders in Washington state are proposing to use the prize money to get a children's book published which depicts breastfeeding babies and toddlers. One of the mothers behind this effort was told that some publishers will not allow depictions of breastfeeding, male nipples, or even cow udders i children's books! Proceeds from book sales would benefit the Seattle LLL toddler group. Check it out and vote!