stroller haters

Now that I'm a mum I've discovered that a lot of people out there hate us stroller pushers (humph). I remember reading a Toronto Life article about how people find yuppie parents and their giant strollers annoying (whatever!), but didn't think I would ever be a recipient of the scoffs and eye rolls. If I had the balls I would bite back but I'm too nice. So here it is. I want all you stroller haters to know that we're not trying to ruin your lives we're just looking for some socialization. It's  a long day in the house with a crying baby and going to a coffee shop once a day or just taking a walk is an escape from the four walls of our homes. Here is some stroller etiquette for all you haters (follow these and it will make her day):

  1. If you see a woman visibly struggling with her stroller and the door of a store/coffee shop give the girl a hand and hold the door open.
  2. When you're walking on the sidewalk and you see a stroller pusher approaching move over just a smidge (yes I've almost been pushed onto the street).
  3. Help a mom out when she's trying to get on the streetcar with her stroller in one arm and baby in the other.

Karma people!

March 24, 2011 — Alanna Banks

you oughta know

OK guys this post is for us girls (read: check out now).

Now that I'm six weeks in to motherhood there are a few things (things the books don't tell you) I want to share with you moms-to-be. We do all sorts of reading about what we need for the big arrival, but most of it covers off stuff you need for the baby not stuff for YOU (the most important person). If you're not comfortable and stress free, your baby won't be either (or your husband and other kids...) so here is what I needed and imagine you will too.

  1. Lip balm - Giving birth and nursing sucks all of the liquid out of your body and as a result your lips will be drier than the Sahara Dessert so go get yourself some Lypsyl, Chapstick, whatever. I had my Vichy Aqualia Thermal Lip Balm literally strapped to my body. Trust me.
  2. Antiperspirant - If you want your hubs to continue sleeping in the same bed as you get some extra strength antiperspirant. I don't know what kind of hormones are released for the first few weeks post birth but you do a lot of sweating when you're sleeping (even when it's only a few hours). I bought Secret Clinical Strength and I have found it to be most effective. I put it on at night before bed and don't smell like I've been working out for hours when I get up to feed L'il E in the night.
  3. Nursing pads - You need these (I didn't think I would either)! In the first few weeks when your milk is coming in and your breast are like WTF they will be leaking like crazy, especially at night. You can buy the disposable ones, but I much prefer the softness of the reusable ones (I use Bamboobino). They are little bit more high maintenance (you have to wash them daily), but the disposables irritated my skin and trust your nips are already hurting, you don't need something to exacerbate the pain.
  4. Soft bras - If you're nursing you're going to need several bras because you're wearing them around the clock (you need something to hold those nursing pads in place). As I mentioned above your nips will be killing so all you want is something super soft. I tried several but the winners for me have been Elita Silk Magic and Medela Nursing Bras they're not sexy but honestly who cares.
  5. Nipple cream (men, boys, guys if you're still reading I told you not to) - I'm all for natural products, but when it comes to this stuff buy Lansinoh Lanolin Topical Treatment. I bought the olive oil nipple cream and it doesn't work, the Hubs can attest to this (I sent him out to Shoppers late one night on the hunt for the Lansinoh cream because I was so desperate).
  6. Reading material - You're going to be feeding your baby at least six times in a 24 hour period and since they feed for roughly 40 minutes that's almost six hours of your day. During the day you can watch TV but those late night feedings are BORING. Set up a little feeding sanctuary in your baby's room with a few good books, your iPhone, and a glass of water - the 40 mins will fly by and you'll actually enjoy it.
  7. Take advantage of your husband - When your hubs gets home from work don't hoard the baby, let him have some quality time and take this opportunity to do something for you. Have a bubble bath, go for a walk alone, whatever it is DO IT. Your hubs is more than capable of taking care of junior and so what if he doesn't do every little thing like you do. It doesn't matter.

These are just a few things, but trust me you'll find it helpful. Please add more if you think I've missed anything. Remember it's all about you.

Good luck mamas!


OK so these emails that I'm getting from J. Crew are dangerous (I can't resist the cuteness of these little clothes). Have you seen their line of childrens clothes called crewcuts?! L'il E is only fourish weeks old and I'm already dreaming of dressing him in these super fly duds (just don't look at the price tag!).

If only we lived in NYC. A girl can dream right?!

March 10, 2011 — Alanna Banks

a nap in a stick

What would I do without you? Benefit's Eye Bright is made for sleep deprived mums (tired eyes no more). I just slick this on my tired eyes every morning and it's an instant perk-me-up! You can pick this up almost anywhere including Shoppers, it's a bit pricey ($20), but will last you forever. For best results apply as a final touch once you've applied all of your eye makeup.

Here's to brighter eyes and no more napping.

March 02, 2011 — Alanna Banks

tired? who me?

Image source

Since l'il E has come along, sleep has been pretty much non-existent (yawn!). The funny thing is when I do fall into bed at night for a couple of hours it's the most comfortable bed on earth (I don't remember it ever feeling so plush and inviting). Today I spent the majority of the day in and around my bed while E slept and fed and I feel so much better. I figure I have to surrender some days and not feel guilty for resting.

If you're pregs and about to pop do the following things now (and repeat)!

  • Go to bed at 9:00 pm and sleep until 9:00 am
  • Take a 30 minute shower, shave your legs and your arm pits, exfoliate
  • Lounge in your pj's and read the newspaper on the couch in total silence
  • Watch a movie with your Hubs and eat popcorn
  • Take your time while you eat every meal and sit at the table

Enjoy your last few weeks of freedom and sweet dreams.



nursing 2.0

Since I started nursing l'il E I've been so plugged in it's ridiculous. I'm up to date on my emails, always know what's happening on Facebook, read all of the latest blog posts in my blog roll, tirelessly read tweets at 3:30 a.m. and when I've had enough of that there's always my Scrabble app! What did women do before iPhones when they were nursing their babies for hours a day?! It's my best friend these days and if you're surprised by my speedy replies to your emails, I guess get used to it (at least for now!).

How do you pass the time?

February 23, 2011 — Alanna Banks

pain pack

Two weeks ago I had an emergency c section and ya the recovery has been painful (especially the first week) but I definitely did not need anything stronger than Advil or Tylenol to relieve the pain. So as you can imagine, I was floored when I was prescribed Oxycodone when I was discharged from the hospital. I hadn't even asked for it! First of all it's a narcotic and it's uncertain if the drug passes through breast milk (not what I want to expose to my brand new little babe). It just makes me so mad that the health care system would prescribe something so strong to c section patients (I could have been one step away from being on Intervention). It's totally ridiculous and obvi a prescription that I will not be filling.

No wonder we have a problem with addiction to painkillers in this country (gawd!).

February 21, 2011 — Alanna Banks

things i wish i hadn't worried about

I can be a huge worrier and I did my share of it while I was preggers. If you're pregnant and a worrier (like me!) here a list of things you can stop worrying about. I did them all and gave birth to a perfectly healthy 8 lb baby boy with all of his parts etc.

1. Caffeine - if you love your daily cup of joe don't deprive yourself, (withdrawal headaches are no fun!) have one cup a day and your little babe will be fine. I drank a cup of tea every morning and sometimes had a chai latte from Starbucks in the afternoon.

2. Tylenol - TAKE IT! Don't suffer with a headache for days, you're better off nipping it right away with two regular strength Tylenol. I was so nervous about taking Tylenol that I would go days with excruciating headaches (bad idea!). I finally caved and started taking Tylenol when I felt a headache coming on, so you can too. Even one extra strength is fine.

3. Alcohol - Nine months is a long time to go sans alcohol, especially if you're like me and really love drinking. Throughout my pregnancy I had the occasional (once a week) small glass of red wine or the Hubs and I would share a beer. I don't recommend hard alcohol but honestly one tiny drink a week with food is totally okay. Think about our parents and our grandparents they all tossed the drinks back and smoked while they were pregnant; yes they're slightly smaller than us, but they turned out ok.

4. Excersing - This one I didn't really worry about, but I think some people do. In the first 12 weeks you'll likely be so tired and nauseous that working out won't even be a thought, but once that second trimester goodness comes around get off your ass and get moving. I walked to and from work (30 mins each way) every day until I gave birth to l'il E and I did prenatal yoga twice a week (I even did it on the day I gave birth). As a result I didn't gain excess weight throughout my pregnancy and my recovery from my c section has been speedier because I was so strong going into labour. So keep fit while you're pregnant and don't let the laziness settle, the longer you wait to get moving the harder it will be.

So those are my two cents. Take it or leave it, but I hope it was helpful.

what stretch marks?

OK don't hate me, but as you know I recently had a little baby boy, and I didn't get one single stretch mark (ya that's right)! I was looking in the mirror this morning after my shower and it dawned on me - I have no stretch marks (OMG)!

What's my secret? Bio Oil! Despite my skepticism I used it religiously everyday (what did I have to lose?) throughout my pregnancy in addition to moisturizer (Vaseline Intensive Care).

SO if you're preggers or thinking about getting pregnant get yourself some Bio Oil stat and start using it. You won't be disappointed.

February 14, 2011 — Alanna Banks

i'm a mom

The Hubs and I are officially parents! After a great Sunday doing yoga, going for brunch and watching the Superbowl with friends our little man decided it was time to get on with things. We welcomed our baby boy (Ethan) into the world respectfully early on Monday morning at 7:24 a.m. Unfortunately I had to have an emergency c section after several hours of hard labour, but thankfully both Ethan and I are thriving.

As I mentioned before, I promise this won't become a mommy blog but I can assure you I will have to post the odd Ethan story every one in a while. He's just too cute!

Happy to be back!

February 12, 2011 — Alanna Banks