Bottle feeding mums are angry

Bottle feeding mums are angry

Mothers who bottle feed their babies have expressed outrage via social media over a feeding area in a parent's room at the Brisbane Pregnancy, Babies and Children's Expo that they said made them feel unwelcome & that favoured breastfeeding mothers.

Women who bottle feed took to various online mother's groups to express their anger and feelings of segregation over the separate feeding areas/seating arrangements provided while others expressed their sadness and guilt at not being able to breast feed.

One mum attending the Expo that was held in Brisbane over the weekend, shared her 'annoyance' saying: 'Check out the segregation between the bottle feeding mums and breastfeedin mums'.
An image include the captions: 'Uncomfortable blue chairs reserved for bottle feeding' and 'Reserved booths with leather chairs for breastfeeding only'.

Another attendee said she was asked by a midwife in the parent's room whether she was breast or bottle feeding, and after stating that she was bottle feed, was directed to the blue chairs - not a private booth that was reserved for breast feeders only.
'There were no mums waiting to breastfeed at the time and there were multiple booths free. Now, considering this was an expo for pregnancy, babies and children, I would expect them to be more understanding'.

'It's bad enough that the S26 and Karicare stalls aren't allowed to give out samples of newborn formula as "breast is best",' she said.

Others who attended the expo commented on the posts/complaints saying that when they attended on other days/times, the comfortable chairs were also available outside of the booths and another said she was told anyone could use the booths.

So it appears while some attendees enjoyed the areas on offer with no issue, others had different experiences and felt the issue needed attention/awareness.

As a breastfeeding mother I'm glad private areas were provided, as it's something many of us may like to do in private to avoid too much exposure (especially new mums. I'm now more of a feed anywhere anytime kind of gal while exercising some discretion).

******* Updated with response from the Pregnancy, Babies and Children's Expo:

A spokeswoman from the Expo told Gold Coast Mum:
'We offer Parents Rooms at our Expos (usually two Parents Rooms in each city - we run in Adelaide, Sydney, Brisbane, Perth and Melbourne) and within those Parents Rooms - sponsored by Woolworths - we offer nappy change facilities; free nappies; free wipes for use within the rooms; full-back chairs for feeding little ones; reclining chairs for feeding little ones; a fully qualified midwife in the Parents Room at all times offering free weighing, measuring and advice (including breastfeeding support); and food/milk warming facilities.'

'We found that with our ever-growing diverse culture, there was a need for private breastfeeding rooms - so we decided to build some little alcoves for mummies who are of a culture that requires this - and it's been so well-received'.

'We have various types of chairs throughout the Parents Room - all of them are comfy! Depends what your needs are 😉 We offer recliner chairs both IN and OUT of the private breastfeeding alcoves, as well as padded comfy chairs (the blue ones in the photos circulating), and then ottomans around the Expo as well - some visitors may have bad backs after giving birth and can't sit in a recliner, or don't want any back at all. And then pregnant mummies like low ottomans with no back to help them not sink into a chair and slouch! I think comfy is a personal choice - so we offer many types of available bottom-holders 😉'

'So, the other point to the private breastfeeding alcoves is for our Expo Midwife to offer breastfeeding counselling in a quiet setting - it's a bit hard to do in the main Parents Room area which gets busy!'

'I had to bottle feed after not being able to breastfeed my 15 month old.'
'I myself feel no shame or discrimination against the breastfeeding rooms at the Expo. I think they're wonderful, and shows the Expo is trying to cater for all requirements.
We are also going to be bringing in Prayer Rooms into the Expo, as we have found there is a growing need for this for a number of our visitors as well, and we try and make the Expo experience as enjoyable and manageable as possible for all our wonderful visitors!'

'The photo of the actual Parents Room - you can see there are recliners there on the left in the main Parents Room, as well as the full-back blue chairs, and then there's the little alcoves for breastfeeding (and it should be noted in some states we usually put a recliner AND a 'standard' chair in each little area - again - because comfort is a personal thing!)'

And in response to the comments regarding infant formula, the Expo spokeswoman said:
'I am sure you are already aware of the WHO code on infant formula, which bans its' advertising and promotion. We (the Expo)  are legally bound by this in Australia, hence no formula sales or promotion are available at the Expo. S26, Nestle and Karicare promote their follow up formula, or toddler milk. 
The Expo has an equal stance on breast/bottle - we have the wonderful Australian Breastfeeding Association at all our Expos offering breastfeeding support and advice, and we also have all the major brands with their bottles - Avent, Miomee, Tommee Tippee, to name a few'.


What are your thoughts? Would you be offended/outraged or do you agree that breastfeeding mothers should have some privacy?

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Date for your diary! Attention Gold Coast families!

Date for your diary! Attention Gold Coast families!

Next Sunday I'll be making my return to the stage, to perform in a karaoke competition at the LIFT's family fun day at Southport's Broadwater Parklands to do my bit to support this gorgeous family.



Four year old identical twin girls Lilly and Gabriella share a bond that would make most envious. 

The gorgeous Gold Coast girls - who love animals, Spongebob Squarepants and playing in the garden together - may be identical twins but a condition affecting Lilly means their parents Sheri and Peter will never have the chance to see their twin girls skipping around together hand in hand, something many parents may take for granted.

When the girls, who Sheri says are real tomboys are playing in the garden, "it's usually Lilly giving Gabriella rides on her wheelchair".

Lilly was born with a rare joint muscle and bone disorder called Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita.  
"She will never walk and has limited to no arm and hand movement," says Sheri.
"She is confined to a power wheelchair.  At the moment we dont have a wheelchair accessible car to transport Lilly around. So our fundraiser is to raise money to obtain one."

Sheri and Peter found out that Lilly had the rare condition at 18 weeks gestation.
Lilly and Gabriella were born, via emergency c-section at 32 weeks gestation, at the Mater Private Hospital in Brisbane.

"We have never personally met anyone who has the same condition.  It is very rare in Australia," Sheri says.
"I have only spoken to people via support groups on Facebook mainly in America."

The family have recently moved to Southport from three years over in England (where Sheri was raised before moving to Australia as a teenager) where Lilly was seeing a specialist and had numerous surgeries "including major foot correctional surgeries, tendon release surgery, blockages in her intestines removed, a bowel resection and an extra appendix removed. As well as numerous pin removal surgeries and serial casting".
"Her life will always consist of physio, occupational therapies and possibly more correctional surgeries in the future," Sheri says.
"The surgeon in the UK refused to do any more surgery on Lilly as he said she was too deeply affected in the bone and the surgery wasn't working."

Sheri, a hair extension technician, and husband Peter are hoping Gold Coast families will come out in force next Sunday June 15 to attend the family fun day that they have been working tirelessly to arrange.
It will be held at Southport Broadwater Parklands from 10am-3pm.

"We have sponsorship from Event Cinemas, Mitre 10, Kmart, Southport Sharks and local MP Robert Molhoek who is making a personal donation," Sheri says.
"The fun day will have face painting, bouncy castle and some other games and fun activities which will all be a gold coin donation. We will have a raffle generating on the day with great prizes. We also have the karaoke competition which is a $5 donation to enter and you can win up to $300 worth of prizes".

(And yes, being the karaoke queen that I am (or was), I'll be taking part, so hoping as many or you as possible can come along to watch/ join in/ have a laugh.)

Sheri says their charity LIFT - Lilly Iris Fundraising Trust has just been registered.  
"After we have obtained the wheelchair accessible car for Lilly we wish to continue our charity helping other sick or disabled children with much needed equipment, support services and gifts."

For further details, contact: or 0458183299 

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Heels at home? Not a thong in sight for Mariah Carey

Heels at home? Not a thong in sight for Mariah Carey

Oh to be a fly on the wall at Mariah Carey's house.

The songbird shared a couple of family snaps this weekend and one couldn't help but notice the diva's choice of footwear.

While many mums might prefer to get around in sweats/gym gear and thongs (flip flops) or trainers (hey, with two little ones to chase around, you need to be as mobile as possible), it seems Mariah is fashion conscious at all times, even at home, and does her best to look her best at all times (even while relaxing with her children).

A pair of high heels can be seen at the bottom of the stairs leading up to the jacuzzi.

Whether Mariah raced in from work/ a photoshoot to join her kids in the spa, or whether such heels are her everyday footwear is anybody's guess.
Seriously, who does she need to impress? She's amazing with or without footwear.

One thing's for sure, heels aren't the most practical choice of footwear when unwinding at home. 
As a mum of 7-month-old twins, a 2-year-old boy & a 4-year-old girl I can tell you right now that despite my years of experience running around in heels (& successfully navigating numerous staircases while intoxicated and racing to make the last train home from after work drinks - back in the day before kids), flats are the way to go if you want to keep up with the kids when hanging out at home.

Picture this...
Daughter: 'Hey mum, I've finisssssshed'.
Mariah: (Trotting up the hallway in her stilettos from the kitchen where she was cutting up some fruit for the children's afternoon tea) 'Hang on honey, mummy will be there to wipe your bottom in a minute'.
Hmmm, no, I can't imagine that either...

What are your thoughts?
Do you think Mariah ever lets her guard down/ unwinds in flats, are the heels just in the photos for show, or is she the diva of all divas, trotting around her home while wearing heels 24/7?!

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Breast milk & placenta JEWELLERY!?

Breast milk & placenta JEWELLERY!?

By Lauren - Gold Coast Mum

Forget diamonds, breast milk & placenta jewellery is the latest must-have to wear on your wrist, around your neck or on your finger.

When I first heard about this intriguing concept, now being offered in Australia, I was curious about the process involved.
Queensland mum of three Melanie makes jewellery made with breast milk, placenta, ashes, babies' first curls, as well as other tributes to lost loved ones and angel babies.

So how did it all come about?
After having her third child, Melanie, says she was looking at her placenta capsules , wishing there was a way to "keep this physical representation of my journey with my third baby forever".

"I had held on to the umbilical stumps from my first two babies but had lost Amber's," she says via her blog.
"I am one to have a keepsake for most of the big things in my life to look back on, so I had to get creative! On a visit to friends I asked them how I would go about infusing placenta so I could keep it forever as a physical representation, they shared their ideas on how I could make this work & of course the next day I was off picking up my supplies. It took me a few goes to get it right, but when I got it I was super excited!"

"Some of my first pieces included a tree of life which was hand shaped and a shape made from placenta which was then added to a basic painting I did for a friend. I was making pieces for friends and began charging a small amount to cover costs. 
Within 2 weeks I had opened up an etsy store and then followed by a Facebook page, after a friend pushed me to just give it a shot!"

"In September 2013 I launched my business ‘Beyond The Willow Tree’, I found my outlet to create and share my passion for pregnancy, birth and motherhood. It was soon after launching that I began having messages from women asking for me to create pieces from breast milk, and soon I was learning new techniques and a hard earned skill set. I met so many women from so many back ground with their own story to share. I was blown away and knew I was on the right path again, expressing myself through art work and being able to be a part of women’s lives again. Hearing their stories and being able to help them on their own journeys."

"It has been 7.5 months now since I began my new found passion and have created now around 250+ pieces so far since officially starting. 
"I put my whole heart and soul into my work & I think I do become overly busy because I spend a lot of time interacting with women, I want this to be a personal experience that they will remember forever."

"I had later learnt a while after setting up I was the second person in Australia that was creating these pieces (the other was blackbird accessories) and love how our styles are completely different to each other, 2 completely individual styles and reasons for beginning our quest to celebrate motherhood. Although I am not sure if she is creating anymore? 
My aim is be different, yet bring in a classic elegant look to my pieces, which is where I introduced my exclusive jewellery," Melanie says.

 "There is heart and soul in to all of my pieces, I am not just a woman putting pieces together, I am a woman who’s piece of my heart goes home with you wishing you all of the best on your journey. I look forward to what the future holds and know there’s a lot more heart and soul i have to give with each piece."

To prepare and send breast milk, ashes or placenta, Melanie offers instructions on her website.
Around 30ml of breast milk is required to make around 1-3 items. Breastmilk can be sent, in the mail, in a container and ziplock bags.
Breastmilk keepsakes take 3-4 weeks to create.
Jewellery using a loved one's ashes can be made using a teaspoon of ashes and the turnaround is 1-2 weeks.

"Creating pieces from your placenta is a more simple process compared to working with liquids such as breast milk. Because of this the process takes from 1-2 weeks from arrival of your placenta. Typically it will take only 4-7 days while I work through the drying process to have your pieces finished and sent back home to you," it says on the Beyond The Willow Tree website.



*This is not a sponsored post. Permission granted from business owner to quote information from the blog/website.

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THIS STYLE OF JEWELLERY? Is it something you would wear?

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