Ep. 84: Pumping the Brakes on Pumping Breastmilk
February 10, 2020
In the segment, “What I Googled This Week,” Shanna and Laura consult the internet for answers to their latest baby conundrums. Also, Laura talks about her baby’s remarkable new language ability, as well as her mixed feelings about quitting pumping, and Shanna reports on her toddler’s latest cute-as-hell behavior and how it is affecting working from home. Finally, they reveal their BFPs and BFNs for the week. Shanna’s toddler is 13 months old, and Laura’s baby is 12 months and 1 week old.
- Laura's Baby Dance Party playlist on Spotify Note: these are not the censored versions, so there are some swear words!
- Tiny Bites Food Shears* Perfect for cutting up food for little mouths on the go. *affiliate link
- Munchkin Snack Catcher* Great for keeping toddlers entertained while snacking! *affiliate link
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Shanna Micko: Hi. Welcome to Big Fat Positive with Shanna and Laura. On this week’s episode, we have our weekly check-ins. We have our special segment, What I Googled This Week, in which we somehow get into the witchcraft and ghost terrain, and we wrap it up with our weekly BFPs and BFNs. Let’s get started.
Shanna Micko: Hey. Welcome to episode 84. Hey, Laura.
Laura Birek: Hi, Shanna. How are you doing?
Shanna Micko: Good. How are you? Give us your updates.
Laura Birek: Okay. My baby is 12 months and one week, and yeah, this week I’ve really noticed a huge jump in his receptive language, which I found really interesting. I’ve heard that they understand a lot more than they can express. Their receptive language is way more intact than their expressive language at this age, but it’s very clear all of a sudden. This week it was just really obvious that he was understanding things I was saying better than he has in the past and there was just one thing that sort of clicked with me, which was we got rid of our Christmas tree this week because when we’re recording this is two weeks-ish after Christmas and we finally got rid of our Christmas tree. We went out one day and came back in and I said, “I kind of miss the Christmas tree,” and he looked to exactly where the Christmas tree was and pointed. I was like, wow.
Shanna Micko: Smart.
Laura Birek: You understood. There’s no question that he understood what I was saying and he was understanding that it was gone and I was like, whoa. So he’s really understanding me, which is making me realize I got to be really mindful of how I talk to him. I feel like I always am, but sometimes you just say things offhand almost as a joke. When they’re little babies, it’s almost really funny to talk to them like they’re full grown adults and I just have to be a little more mindful that he’s…
Shanna Micko: Like, she a bitch, you got change your diaper. Like that or something? Is that what you mean?
Laura Birek: Basically, yeah. Lots of cursing. I’m not really necessarily too worried about the cursing, but I am worried about things like, “Ooh, that’s a stinky diaper. You made a really stinky diaper.” I don’t want him to start feeling shame for stuff like that.
Shanna Micko: Oh, yeah.
Laura Birek: When I find myself being like, “Pee. That’s stinks.” I’ll be like, “Mommy makes stinky poops too.”
We are trying to make sure that he’s understanding that I’m just trying to make sure that if I’m teasing him for something, it’s something sweet and it’s not going to damage him in the future.
Shanna Micko: He’s going to have a stinky poop complex for the rest of his life.
Laura Birek: Well, I think people do, right?
Shanna Micko: I think so.
Laura Birek: I definitely don’t love the idea of pooping in a public bathroom and stuff.
Shanna Micko: Oh, same.
Laura Birek: So I don’t want it to be a thing. That’s very fun and then as far as his expressive language goes, he is practicing shaking his head no right now.
Shanna Micko: Ooh.
Laura Birek: He thinks it’s so funny.
Shanna Micko: Oh, no.
Laura Birek: But it’s not like he does it to be defiant.
For example, I have a playlist on Spotify that’s the baby dance party, which I guess I could share that link on our show notes.
Shanna Micko: Yeah, please. I want to be part of that.
Laura Birek: It’s a very eclectic baby dance party playlist and one of the songs we have on it is Sia’s The Greatest. I don’t know if you’re familiar with the song, but the bridge of the song, she says, “Don’t give up. Won’t give up. Don’t give up. No. No. No.” It says, “No. No. No,” over and over. So we were listening to it and he heard it and he was like, “No, no, no. No, no, no,” and he shakes his head and then he laughs he goes, “No, no, no,” and then he laughs and laughs and laughs, because he’s realized I think that he can put it together.
Shanna Micko: He’s so delighted with himself. I love it.
Laura Birek: It’s so cute when he’s proud of himself for things. So that is just super fun. I’m really into this. He kind of does yes, but he can’t quite get the nodding. He said, “Yes,” but will nod yes, yes, yes and he moves his head in kind of a figure eight.
Shanna Micko: That’s awesome.
Laura Birek: So that’s very sweet. That’s fun on his part. For my world, I am no longer pumping.
Shanna Micko: Ooh.
Laura Birek: Yeah, so I’m still breastfeeding and I think we’re just going to breastfeed as long as both of us are happy with it and right now we’re both happy with it. He’s very emotionally attached to it. He just begs for it a lot and comes up starts pulling my shirt up and it really gives him a lot of joy and comfort. So I’m fully admitting that I am also emotionally attached to it. You get sweet cuddle time and so we’re going to stick with that for a while, but now that he’s 12 months, he doesn’t need breast milk. It’s kind of bonus for him at this point and that means I don’t have to pump anymore because he doesn’t need it anymore.
Shanna Micko: Is he getting cow’s milk in the morning or what?
Laura Birek: We have like a weeks’ worth of frozen milk left in the fridge and he only gets one bottle a day in the morning. So we’re just going to get through it and then figure it out. Corey says he’s trying to add a little cow’s milk into the bottles in the morning, but he hasn’t really been interested in it. It hasn’t really gone over all that well.
Shanna Micko: Okay.
Laura Birek: Then we’ve tried putting also cow’s milk in a cup. The exciting thing that happens at a year you can get cow’s milk and honey.
Shanna Micko: Oh, right.
Laura Birek: Probably not together. Maybe it’d be good. Warm it up.
Shanna Micko: I thought that’s what you meant at first.
Laura Birek: Oh, yeah. You could.
Shanna Micko: Honey milk.
Laura Birek: I actually do love steamed milk with honey. So maybe he’d like that too, but no, he hasn’t been interested. He’ll take a couple sips and then he just doesn’t care about it. We’ll see. But the idea is that we might as well use up the breast milk that I’ve pumped because, why not? Otherwise it’s just going to go to waste. So we’re doing that and sometime next week we’ll try to figure out whether he’ll take the milk in the morning.
Shanna Micko: Are you one of those people that just was ready to throw the pump off of the balcony or smash it with a baseball bat and be done with it? Or are you just kind of like, bye-bye little pump? What’s your attitude and how do you feel about it all?
Laura Birek: I have mixed feelings because I only pumped once a day unless I had some weird thing, like a game show I had to go to: those normal mom things that people do. So it didn’t really take all that much time, like 30 minutes a day maybe and it was fine.
Once I got the Spectra, it was way more comfortable and it wasn’t a hard process. So on one hand I’m like, good riddance. It’s just like 30 minutes of my day. I get back and I don’t have to worry about washing the pump parts or any of that crap anymore. On the other hand, I’ve lost my free time to watch Teen Mom by myself.
Shanna Micko: That’s devastating.
Laura Birek: It is devastating
Shanna Micko: Because you can really only justify that by multitasking it with something important. You wouldn’t just park your butt on the couch and put on Teen Mom and just watch it. No shame to anyone who does, but I feel like I know you.
Laura Birek: That sounds like a beautiful world. No, I couldn’t. I have too much shit to do and so when you’re hooked up to a breast pump, you really can’t do more than that. I’ve heard of all these people who pump at work and they take business calls and all that stuff. But if you don’t have to take a business call, you are not taking a business call pumping. I would just use it as my little bit of downtime for the day and it wouldn’t always work out because sometimes the baby would wake up from his nap or the worst is the construction workers working on the back on the garage conversion that will never end. They were so reliable to come and knock on my glass door and ask me for something right when I was pumping. I was like, are you fucking kidding me right now?
Shanna Micko: Oh my God, I need a do not disturb sign for your door.
Laura Birek: Then they of course were like, “Oh, God.” I was like, people. Anyway, I have very mixed feelings. I think for the most part positive feelings. So yeah, I packed up all the pumping supplies and stuff and put them in storage.
Shanna Micko: All right.
Laura Birek: That’s been exciting. Then I had just one more quick update, which goes back to the cow’s milk thing, because I went to our 12 month pediatrician’s appointment and quick updates. His blood sugar is perfect. I don’t know if you remember, he had a little bit of a diabetes scare. It wasn’t a scare. I just was paranoid because he drank so much water.
Shanna Micko: Right.
Laura Birek: We got the blood test. It’s like a toe prick for his blood sugar. Totally normal. Then we also got the toe prick to check his iron, which is up by another point, I think. It went from 10 and a half to 11 and half or something.
Shanna Micko: Good.
Laura Birek: Anyway, I don’t remember the numbers, but it’s at 11 and half now. It’s going up. So that’s good.
Shanna Micko: Yay.
Laura Birek: We talked about cow’s milk at the appointment, and my pediatrician is actually fairly anti-cow’s milk. She doesn’t think it’s necessary as long as they can get their calcium from another source, basically. She’s like, he eats cheese, he eats yogurt. He really doesn’t need milk. It would just be if he wants milk and she said to limit it to 16 ounces a day if he does like it. Signs are pointing to him not liking it at all, but she was like, he doesn’t need it at all. So it’s up to you whether you give it to him, but you don’t have to give it to him for nutrition.
Shanna Micko: I know.
Laura Birek: We’ll see how that goes.
Shanna Micko: That’s in line with what our pediatrician said too. When we asked how much, he said 0 to 16 ounces. So sounds like, yeah, it’s not necessary.
Laura Birek: Are you guys giving cow’s milk right now?
Shanna Micko: Yeah.
Laura Birek: Okay.
Shanna Micko: She likes it a lot and I like that it’s extra protein and calcium. She doesn’t love a lot of cheese and yogurt and stuff, so I like it.
Laura Birek: It’s so convenient. Part of me hopes he likes it because it’s just like, here, poured in a glass, have some milk, there you go. But I don’t think he’s going to make my life that easy. Anyway, that was our week. Lots of receptive language, lots of no, no, no.
Shanna Micko: It’s so cute.
Laura Birek: No more pumping.
Shanna Micko: Woo-hoo.
Laura Birek: Shanna, how old is your toddler now and what are you guys up to?
Shanna Micko: All right. CeCe is 13 months and she has started doing the cutest little thing that I just have to talk about because I love it so much.
Laura Birek: Okay.
Shanna Micko: She’ll go get a book from her bookshelf, walk over to me with it, turn around, sit on my lap and demand that I read her.
Laura Birek: Aww, she is after my own heart. How cute is that?
Shanna Micko: Aww, it’s so cute. I love it. It’s just like, “You want to sit on my lap?” It makes working a little tricky because she does not care if I have a laptop on my lap doing work. She will push it out of the way, straddle my lap and be like, book!
Laura Birek: What are her favorite books?
Shanna Micko: She has two little books of little nursery rhymes. One has Itsy Bitsy Spider, Row Row Your Boat. One has Twinkle Twinkle. They have little handles on the spine so she can hold it like a little suitcase. It’s adorable and she just loves these books. So we read those a lot. Kind of along those lines, which is also making work a little tricky, is that she is mastering climbing up and down from the couch. She’s getting really good at that and learning to climb off feet first. I’m always like, “Feet first. Feet first. Watch the edge,” so she can climb right up and scooch my laptop over and be like, mom, fuck you. Play with me. Oh, God. It’s so hard.
Laura Birek: I don’t know how you do it. I really, really don’t. I can’t get anything done and if I like look at my phone, he’s like, what are you doing? I can’t even look at my phone anymore. I don’t know how you work on a laptop and take meetings and stuff. You’re a hero.
Shanna Micko: That’s her. Then the thing on my plate this week on top of everything else I’ve got going on is my other daughter Elle has a birthday coming up. She’s going to be four and so I’ve been planning her birthday party and it’s just wild how different birthday parties are nowadays from when I was little.
Laura Birek: Oh, yeah.
Shanna Micko: There are just huge ordeals. Have we talked about this?
Laura Birek: I don’t think we’ve talked about it. No, I need to know for my future.
Shanna Micko: When I was little, it was a couple kids and it was just at home or at the pool and it was just very, very low key and now it’s like, invite every single kid in the preschool class, which is a lot, and your own personal friends and you have to find a place to hold it, especially when you have a winter baby because you can’t guarantee that outside party time. So I booked a bowling alley and I’m going to have a big bowling party and already 16 kids have RSVP’d and it’s going to be so over the top and of course I’m making a cake because that’s my new hobby. I like doing this stuff, but it’s just a big thing and I’m like, what am I preparing her for in the future of birthday parties? She’s had a party at MyGym. She’s going to have a party at a bowling alley. What is the 16th birthday party going to be like? A trip to Paris or something? I don’t know.
Laura Birek: I will RSVP “yes” for the trip to Paris.
Shanna Micko: Oh, I see. Okay. Good.
Laura Birek: I’m assuming I’m invited.
Shanna Micko: We’ll see how close we all are in 16 years.
Laura Birek: Yeah, that does sound like a lot. I have this issue with presents for people in my life that every year I feel like I need to top what I did the year before and it’s unsustainable and I feel like it’s kind of the same way. We got to do better than last year. It’s the next big birthday and then you’re just setting yourself up for like you said, a trip to the moon on the 21st birthday or whatever.
Shanna Micko: It’s true, but I think maybe that will change now that you have a kid and once he’s a little older and you start going to tons of birthday parties and stuff, I think all of this parents have kind of understood that it’s fine to just rush to Target the day of the party, grab a toy, get a gift receipt and call it a day and that’s awesome. So I’m personally taking the pressure off of you to top yourself and ever get any of my kids a trip to the moon.
Laura Birek: Thank you. I’ll talk to my financial advisor and hold that savings account for now. No, it’s hard because you want to give them a fun time, but I do see how it becomes an escalating problem. I feel like I’m not a great person to talk to this about because my mother went all out for our childhood birthday parties.
Shanna Micko: Oh, really?
Laura Birek: Yeah, we invited the whole school.
Shanna Micko: The whole school? What?
Laura Birek: Yeah, basically I think so. Not just the class, but everyone in their grade I feel like. I don’t even know because I wasn’t really that involved. All I knew is that one day everyone showed up. There had to be a hundred people at these parties.
Shanna Micko: Oh my gosh.
Laura Birek: But here’s the thing, we lived in a house with a pool and a slide and my birthday is in May in Fresno where it’s hot and we lived on two and a half acres.
Shanna Micko: That’s so great. That’s my dream birthday party situation right there. I love that.
Laura Birek: It was really fun. I felt very, very special, but also she didn’t have to rent out a venue and she still bought Costco pizzas and cake and stuff. So I’m sure for the amount of money I spent just renting the venue for my baby’s first birthday party, I could have fed like 200 people probably.
Shanna Micko: Yes.
Laura Birek: It’s just a different world and our houses can only fit so many people and can only fit so many small children running around.
Shanna Micko: Absolutely. The lack of entertainment. I don’t have room in my yard for a bounce house. We don’t have a pool. Oh, God. Summer birthday parties with the pool. My birthday’s in June, so we would do pool parties. I just love it. I really wish my kids were born in the summer.
Laura Birek: You had control over that. Just saying. I’m just saying that was your doing. They had no control over that.
Shanna Micko: I guess so. Anyway, those are my updates for this week. Should we move on to our special segment?
Laura Birek: Yeah, let’s take a little break and do it.
Laura Birek: We are back. So our special segment this week is a classic. It’s What I Googled This Week where we talk about the strange and interesting stuff we had to consult the internet god’s for. Shanna, what did you Google this week?
Shanna Micko: I googled baby dimples on upper cheeks.
Laura Birek: Oh, okay. Does she have cute little dimples? She does, right? I’ve seen these dimples.
Shanna Micko: I did not know what it was. At first for a long time I was just like when she smiles, they are really big. I guess that’s how dimples work.
Laura Birek: That is the function that creates the dimples.
Shanna Micko: She gets a crease. It’s really mostly on the left side and it’s like on her upper cheek bone and under her eye kind of. It’s really cute, but I didn’t know what it was at first. I was like, maybe it’s a dimple. Do people get dimples other than the typical place you imagine them, which is right on the corner of your mouth? So I had to know and there is course not a ton of information about this because I think it’s probably pretty rare, but I did find a few interesting things I wanted to share. So, first of all, I don’t have dimples. I’ve never thought much about them in my life. Obviously, they’re cute, but I learned what a dimple is and how it works. For those of you who don’t know, it’s basically when a part of the muscle is attached to your cheek and so when you smile that muscle tenses up and creates that little indentation. So there you go. Fun fact.
Laura Birek: I’m pretty sure I have a dimple on the top of my cheek.
Shanna Micko: What?
Laura Birek: Yeah.
Shanna Micko: Really?
Laura Birek: Now I’m talking weird, because I’m scrunching my face up. It’s only on one side. It’s on my right side. I’m going to turn on my selfie mode and see if I can see this.
Shanna Micko: This is awesome.
Laura Birek: I’ll take a photo.
Shanna Micko: Okay.
Laura Birek: Let’s see. Yeah, totally.
Shanna Micko: That’s so special. You and CeCe both have upper cheek dimples.
Laura Birek: I’m going to send you. It’s kind of hard to see. I look like a crazy person in this photo, but I’m going to text this to you.
Shanna Micko: Please do. Let me check this out. Yeah! Aww, you guys are dimple twinsies. A little bit higher than that, but that’s super cute and that leads perfectly into this next thing I’m going to share, which is great because I had no clue how I was going to tie this in to this conversation, but I really wanted to.
So this search brought up Google Books results for the following book.
Laura Birek: Google Books is the thing where they scan all these books so you can actually search inside the text of books.
Shanna Micko: Yeah, your Google search results will sometimes pull up stuff from within the text of these books. The book that came up was called Backwoods Witchcraft: Conjure & Folk Magic from Appalachia.
Laura Birek: Oh my God. Cool. I’m here for it.
Shanna Micko: I didn’t read the whole book of course. Just this little excerpt. But there’s a section in the book called Marking and Mirroring and I’m going to read a little bit that’s going to lead up to the part about dimples that I find is connected to this, “I grew up hearing about children being marked by their mothers in the womb by things the mothers did. I’m an example. When my mother was three months pregnant with me, she was thrown out of a moving truck going 75 miles an hour. Thankfully, we were both okay. But I was born with a birth mark on my back in the shape of a pickup truck. The belief is that if the mother is frightened by something, her baby could be marked with a birth mark the shape of what frightened her or have a physical resemblance to something or someone. But on the other hand, the babe could be marked by someone the mother loved dearly. My godson, whose mother is my best friend, had a dimple on his upper cheek just like mine that shows when he smiles.” Laura, maybe your cheek dimple marked CeCe.
Laura Birek: I love that. We got little dimple twins.
Shanna Micko: Thank God she doesn’t have a birthmark in the shape of a pickup truck. So that’s good.
Laura Birek: I have a massive birthmark on my shoulder.
Shanna Micko: I didn’t know.
Laura Birek: It’s kind of faded as an adult, but as a kid it was really obvious. It’s still there. It’s just I forget about it and I also don’t show my shoulders that much. But it’s this long like archipelago of darker skin across my shoulder and growing up in the eighties, we called it my Gorbachev because it looked just like Gorbachev’s: the mark he had on his head.
Shanna Micko: Right.
Laura Birek: So maybe when my mom was pregnant with me, she was scared by Gorbachev.
Shanna Micko: You’ve got to find out and corroborate this.
Laura Birek: Everyone was scared of Russia of the USSR in the eighties in America. I don’t know if my mom was actually that scared. She’s like a very non-afraid person.
But, oh, that’s my mark.
Shanna Micko: That’s your mark.
Laura Birek: I also have the exact same birth mark on my upper thigh that my baby does.
Shanna Micko: What? I didn’t know that. That’s cool.
Laura Birek: It shaped like a little heart.
Shanna Micko: Aww.
Laura Birek: Yeah, it’s weird. So there you go. Marking from the womb. I’m glad I had a positive effect on CeCe.
Shanna Micko: Then the last thing about this is apparently there is a very famous K-pop singer: a young girl. She’s known for her upper cheek dimples. So if you want to get an idea of what I’m talking about, you can Google this K-pop star. Her name is Weki Meki – Lua. She’s a K-pop star and she’s really cute and she’s got little upper cheek dimples. So perfect example of what I’m talking about.
Laura Birek: I do wish my upper cheek dimples were symmetrical though I have to say.
Shanna Micko: That would be cute. CeCe has only got it on one side, but oh, well. What did you Google this week or recently?
Laura Birek: This was a Google at 10:30 p.m. at night, which was, “Baby standing silently in crib.” He woke up at like 10:30 just one night this week randomly and you know that’ll happen every once in a while. He’ll wake up and sort of fuss for a minute and go back to sleep. So he cried for like a minute or two and he was upset and so we actually went in to check to make sure he didn’t have a poop. I went in, smelled him, I ended up nursing him for a minute and then he didn’t want to nurse anymore. I put him down and he was fine and he was quiet and I left and then he got silent and he put his head down and so we turned the video part of the monitor off and just went back to watching whatever we were watching. Then I went back into the bedroom, we’re getting ready for bed, I plug in the monitor for overnight charging and I turned the screen on because usually what we do is we have the audio on and the screen stays off to save battery. Also to save us from obsessing over every time he turns over. So I go and I turn the screen on and he is standing at the edge of his crib silently just staring out into space.
Shanna Micko: Oh my God. Was he sleep standing? Do you think he fell asleep standing?
Laura Birek: His eyes were open. I could see him blinking and every once in a while he would shuffle a little bit over or shuffle around the corner to the other side. He was looking towards the door. I think he was looking to see if we would come in, but he wasn’t crying. Shanna, he did this for an hour.
Shanna Micko: An hour?
Laura Birek: An hour.
Shanna Micko: Is it baby sleep walking? Seriously, what did you find out? This is wild.
Laura Birek: I don’t know. People would be like, kids, they’re practicing. They’re standing. He’s been standing for so long. He was holding onto the edge. So it’s not like he was practicing his independent standing. Of course, you get the people who are like, that’s when they’re talking to their ghosts.
Shanna Micko: Well, yes, of course my mind went to ghost.
Laura Birek: But he wasn’t talking to anyone. He was just standing there looking at things.
Shanna Micko: He was listening to the ghosts.
Laura Birek: He was listening I guess, but he wasn’t going, “No, no, no.” I can tell you it was exactly an hour, because I was obsessively looking at it. We have our little normal baby monitor that’s like a radio signal. It’s not on WI-FI or anything and it’s more reliable and it’s the sound and the video and the image is better. But we also have a Nest Cam in there that’s left over from when it was my office. It was like a security camera basically and I turn it on at night as a backup. So I was able to go back and watch the tape and I watched as he was walking back and forth standing in his crib. I’m like, well, I’m going to go brush my teeth because he’s not crying. There’s no reason to go in there. If this was happening at 2:00 a.m., we would’ve had no idea.
Shanna Micko: Maybe it has been happening every night.
Laura Birek: Exactly. Who knows? Maybe this is just what he does every night. So I went, brushed my teeth, did my face wash, all that stuff and I came back out and he’s still there. I’m just watching and Corey’s like, “What do we do?” I’m like, “I don’t know. Just wait until he either starts crying.” But I had gone in earlier, like I knew he hadn’t pooped. I knew he was fed. He was just standing there. He wasn’t crying. So I just obsessively watched it until finally I was like, he’s so tired. He started swaying. You could tell he was so tired and then I was like, he’s going to fall over and fall asleep. What happened was eventually he sunk down to his knees and he fell asleep with his face pressed in between the bars of the crib.
Shanna Micko: Oh my God.
Laura Birek: Just when I was like, “Maybe I need to go in and move him,” he moved himself down and fell asleep and then he slept through the night. No problem.
Shanna Micko: Oh my God.
Laura Birek: I know. I think he even slept till 7:30 that day because he was probably so tired.
Shanna Micko: From just standing around for an hour. So bizarre.
Laura Birek: I had to make a time lapse of this. That’s one of the benefits of the Nest Cam is you can go and make time lapses. I went in and did that. We’ll have to post that to our Instagram stories. It was crazy. It was creepy.
Shanna Micko: That sounds so creepy. I think you’ve got a sleepwalker on your hand. That’s my theory.
Laura Birek: Oh, buddy. I don’t want him to be a sleepwalker. It’s a hard life. It’s dangerous.
Shanna Micko: I’ve heard Mike Birbiglia’s stories.
Laura Birek: I need him not to be like Mike Birbiglia, but it’s just interesting to me because I think he was awake. I don’t think he was asleep because he was blinking and walking around the corner and stuff.
Shanna Micko: True.
Laura Birek: So I don’t know. It was very strange. I’d be curious to hear if any of our listeners had a similar situation.
Shanna Micko: Yes, please let us know.
Laura Birek: I feel like it can’t be the only one. Anyway, that was my very weird also very entertaining in a creepy way. It was like a free hour long horror movie night. But should we take a break and come back with our BFPs and our BFNs for the week?
Shanna Micko: Yes, I’m excited to share mine.
Laura Birek: Ooh.
Shanna Micko: We are back and we’ve got our weekly BFPs and BFNs. Laura, what do you have for us?
Laura Birek: I have a BFN.
Shanna Micko: Oh, all right. Tell us.
Laura Birek: My BFNs are multiple things. They are hard to baby proof items. Those things in your house that just defy proper baby proofing.
Shanna Micko: Like cats.
Laura Birek: Well, cats, yeah. Cats are a great one, but the one that I’m concerned about right now is my coffee table.
Shanna Micko: Oh, okay.
Laura Birek: My coffee table comes off to about shoulder height on my baby and it’s a coffee table we need it if we’re sitting in there to put our coffee on, I guess. But it’s right in the middle of the living room and he loves walking around it. It’s perfect for cruising and we’ve done the thing where we put the little rubber, clear plastic soft bumpers on the corners.
Shanna Micko: Is it made out of wood?
Laura Birek: It’s wood and metal. So the top part’s all wood and it’s actually one of those storage coffee tables where you can lift the top up to be like a table height basically inside their storage.
Shanna Micko: Oh, cool.
Laura Birek: The corners are a little sharp and the edges aren’t like razor sharp wooden edges or anything, but they are not soft at all and I thought it was fine until recently when my mom was in town. We were trying to encourage the baby to walk a little bit more and take a few steps and he was getting really excited about it and he would take one step between the coffee table and the couch and get really excited and then he’d start excitedly sort of cruising around the coffee table really fast and kind of in a dancing way. But he went around the corner and just was getting all excited and he kind of took a misstep and he dropped down and his chin hit the table.
Shanna Micko: Ouch.
Laura Birek: It bumped really bad. But the thing that was really bad is that he has four teeth on bottom now, but he doesn’t have molars and so his bottom teeth cut the roof of his mouth and so he was bleeding and I was worried he was going to bite his tongue really bad. He has this terribly terrifying tendency to walk around with his tongue sticking out of his mouth and I’m just like, “Oh God, baby. I really don’t want you to cut your tongue that bad.” I don’t even know if it’s possible, but I have these terrible visions of his tongue getting cut off completely and stuff. I really doubt. I go to the worst case scenario in my brain. I should mention this was all on film because I was videoing him.
Shanna Micko: Oh, no.
Laura Birek: So I have a video of his first really bad bonk and I felt so bad. I scooped him up and got a damp washcloth and he stopped bleeding really quickly and he actually recovered really quickly. That was okay, but what I realized is that other than getting rid of the coffee table, I don’t really think I can fix it. Even if I put a soft, pool noodle or something around the edges that wouldn’t stop him from bonking his chin on it and cutting the inside of his mouth. You know what I mean? I don’t know what to do about it.
Shanna Micko: What if you put one of your gigantic blankets over it during the day? It would cushion the whole thing or push it off to the side where it’s not…
Laura Birek: You know how it’s one of those storage ones. So it’s really heavy. I can’t do it by myself and I feel like I need to talk to Corey about this because he didn’t see it. I showed him the video though, but I keep being like, “This coffee table might be a problem.” He sort of has dismissed it. It’s fine. He needs to learn how to maneuver around it. It’s not that sharp, but I think it might be something where I need to get him on board to move it because bless his soul. He still is really holding on to the idea that we can have an aesthetically pleasing house with the baby around.
Shanna Micko: Here’s the thing. You can in the evening after the baby goes to bed. But during the day, scooch it out of the way if you can. Or maybe that gate that was his yes space, maybe gate it off during the day or something like that and then you can clean it up at night.
Laura Birek: The gate won’t work just cause of our layout, I don’t think. But I do think that we can move it because if it’s off to the side too, he’d be less interested in it. He wouldn’t even really be walking around it because it would just be off to the side. So maybe I could gate it if it was off to the side, so all right. I’ll have to try that.
Shanna Micko: I’m sorry. That’s so stressful.
Laura Birek: Then also to add onto the baby proof stuff, one other conundrum we have is I have all the plugs plugged up that aren’t being used, but you have to use some plugs sometimes. So I have this one set of wall plugs that need to have things plugged into it. I need to go get more extension cords I guess so I can run an extension cord somewhere where he can’t reach but right now there’s a lot of like, “We don’t play with wires. That’s off limits. We don’t play with wires because they’re dangerous and they could shock people not just babies.” It’s like, so much redirection.
Shanna Micko: So much. Someone in my mom’s group posted an item. It was like a power strip or something, but it had a plastic top over it or something. You could insert the tip of the cord and then plug it in and then close it all so they can’t get any of the really dangerous parts.
Laura Birek: Oh, interesting. I should look at that.
Shanna Micko: Maybe there’s something like that you could use.
Laura Birek: There’s got to be. I hate just buying so much shit all the time for these phases, but this is an important one. He needs to be safe. Anyway, so that’s my BFN. That’s what we’re dealing with right now. Shanna, you teased that you had a good one, so I’m guessing it’s a BFP. But I want to hear.
Shanna Micko: It’s a BFP.
Laura Birek: Okay. Go ahead.
Shanna Micko: Good. So my BFP this week is a product called Tiny Bites Food Shears.
Laura Birek: Food shears.
Shanna Micko: They’re little food scissors. They’re about the size of kid’s scissors, but they’re actually really sharp and pointy so the kids shouldn’t play with them. They’re for adults, but they are awesome for cutting up baby food or even Elle’s food that’s just tricky to cut with a fork and knife. For example, CeCe loves little tangerines and mandarins.
Laura Birek: Tangerines, yes. Cutie.
Shanna Micko: Yes, Cutie. She loves them, but one full segment is too much for her. She gags on it and she’s not great at fully chewing things yet, so I have to cut those up and my God, trying to cut those little damn segments with a knife and a fork and it’s getting stuck on the membranes and I just was getting pissed about cutting orange segments and someone in my mom’s group was like, “I saw a mom at a restaurant the other day whip out a pair of little scissors and just cut up her kid’s food in no time.” I was like, oh my God, I need that. I’ve never heard of this. So I went online. They exist. They are fantastic. I just take a little segment and make it in a couple little cuts. It’s great for little fish sticks, toast, muffins.
Laura Birek: So they’re good for travel to just throw in the bag?
Shanna Micko: Absolutely. They come with a travel top so you can put it over the top and it’s not sharp or anything. You can bring it with you.
Laura Birek: That’s good because I couldn’t avoid taking Cuties with me anywhere for that reason because it’s so hard. Yeah, I watch all these other babies just take a whole segment and definitely bite into it and I have no problem. My baby will take three segments and just shove them in his mouth like a chipmunk and I’m just like, “Okay. It’s too much.” So yeah, I’m with you on having to cut those up.
Shanna Micko: It’s not perfect for everything. Like cutting grapes with them is tricky because it kind of squishes and they juice out a little bit, but it is really good for cutting things that are just a little bit trickier and it’s fast and I feel like I spend so much time prepping meals for kids and whatever I can do to make it faster is great.
Laura Birek: No, I’m there with you. Do you have good containers that you use to take baby food and stuff with you? Because I have these little tiny ones that were for when he was a little baby eating purees and they’re just not cutting it anymore and I’m sick of using Ziploc bags.
Shanna Micko: I have a couple things. There’s one that’s kind of for wows or puffs or little stuff like that. It’s a cup with two little handles and you put a lid on top and it’s kind of cut.
Laura Birek: I know the thing you’re talking about because when I first saw it being used I think with Elle I was like, “That’s a genius thing.”
It allows the Cheerios to stay in, but the kid can go in and get it themselves.
Shanna Micko: Those are kind of cool. It’s tough. They will fall out if you throw it in your bags, so it’s not perfect. Some come with lids and then I have just little small cylinder Tupperware kind of reusable ones that have a screw on lid that will bring little stuff. But we don’t go very many places.
Laura Birek: I’ve been thinking I want to look into those little kid dental boxes essentially because we do go places a lot. I would get stir crazy so we have to leave the house and my guy eats so much freaking food and he wants a variety. So I think I need a five year old’s lunchbox for my baby.
Shanna Micko: There you go. That’s a good idea.
Laura Birek: I’m going to have to look into that. All right. What are they called?
Shanna Micko: They are called Tiny Bites Food Shears. Comes with two little shears.
Laura Birek: Oh, that’s cool. So we will put a link to that for sure on our website.
Shanna Micko: I think that’s it for this episode, right?
Laura Birek: I think so.
Shanna Micko: Awesome. If you want to share anything with us about what you Googled recently, please reach out and let us know. We love hearing from you. Laura, where can they reach us?
Laura Birek: We are on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook BFP Podcast. We also have a Facebook community group. Just search Big Fat Positive Community. It’s a closed group, so you have to request to join, but I will add you right away and you can join in on all the amazing conversations we’re having in there. It’s such a great group. We also have a website, bigfatpositivepodcast.com. Or you can send us an email with maybe a voice memo for our Checkin’ the Inbox segment: [email protected].
Shanna Micko: If you love our show, please spread the word. Let your pregnant friends know about our podcast or your new parent friends, and please leave us a rating or review wherever you listen. That helps people find us in the search and know that we are a great show. So thank you so much for doing that. Big Fat Positive is produced by Laura Birek, Shanna Micko and Steve Yager.
Laura Birek: Thanks for listening, everyone. We’ll see you next week.
Shanna Micko: Bye
Laura Birek: Bye.