Heading into her fourth month Em will go at the most three hours between feeds (that includes during the night). sometimes if she is feeling poorly or having a growth spurt or there is a “Y” is the day – she will feed breastfeed hourly – apparently this is all perfectly normal.
Perfectly normal is a phrase I hear a lot now …..
“So long as there are lots of wet and dirty nappies that rate of feeding is perfectly normal” say the Health Visitors.
“Acutually, we haven’t had any dirty nappies for two weeks.”
“Yes, that’s perfectly normal… Breastmilk is the perfect food so there is very little waste” they say cheerily.
“Is it normal to be so tired I hallucinate that I am feeding my baby and then she vanishes from my arms and I have to get up and check she is in her cot”
“Yes perfectly normal ,if you are tired. Are you resting when she is resting?”
“Yes, I lie.”
Because of course I am not resting, the second she closes her eyes I am trying to do stuff that actually makes feel perfectly normal cooking , reading and of course eating
Since I am the sole source of her food , I am course eating a lot too. I thought I had an appetite before I was pregnant but now it is supercharged. Guidance suggests an extra 500 calories a day, the health visitor suggests cake , cheese and chocolate. I actually got told off for eating too healthily and not often enough.
So aside from eating constantly I am also trying to eat foods there are foods which stimulate milk production – lactogenic foods. Oats are one , another is fennel , so “second breakfast” is porridge and fennel tea. Yes, I eat two breakfasts now.
Sadly fresh fennel is just coming out of season this uses the fennel bulb with potatoes packed dish which is great side for fish or chicken but delicious as a main too.
Potato and Fennel Gratin
1 bulb of fennel finely sliced
500g of potatoes finely sliced
100g of breadcrumbs
1 tbsp of fennel seeds
4 tbsp of olive oil
Salt and Pepper
- Mix the fennel and potatoes with half the olive oil , season well with salt and pepper
- Pack into a baking dish, cover with foil and place in the oven at 180degC for 40 minutes
- For the last 10 minutes scatter over the breadcrumbs, fennel seeds and drizzle over the remaining olive oil.