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Snippets: Treat “pink-eye” conjunctivitis without antibiotics

School has started, Fall has fallen, and it’s time to start preparing for the onslaught of annoying little illnesses that get passed around so easily. Pink-eye is one of the most popular, right?

I’m suuuuper susceptible to conjunctivitis. I had a raging, double-eye case of it when I was about 12 (after a week of sleep-away horse camp with no running water), and ever since, my body has leapt upon every chance to re-experience that hell. Any time my immune system is compromised, I have to be on the guard for a big flare up.

I’m also not a fan of antibiotics, as you know. The drops used to treat pink-eye are pretty benign, but why bother getting a prescription when you can use an extremely...

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Hey Laura, how can I improve my 12 month old’s sleep habits?

Allie emailed me last week, at her wit’s end with chronic sleep deprivation and I pounded out a quick response. She’s given me permission to reprint our exchange (edited a bit for readability and extra things I thought of since) in case it can help anyone else out there!

Basically, we are having a tough time with Noey’s sleeping. Common problem, I know, but it is really difficult to know what to do. She is almost a year old, on Monday, and right now she takes naps and sleeps on a futon in her room. Until a month ago we all slept in the same king size bed. I sleep with her at night, my husband sleeps on our king size bed alone. She wakes up about 5 times a night. I am sleeping with her on...

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Hey Laura, got any advice for new parents?

Oh, you know me! I always have something helpful to say!

This post is actually from my personal letter archives. I wrote most of it after my first was born (nearly 5 years ago!) and have tinkered with it each time I’ve sent it to friends who are expecting. Since I have a bunch of friends who are having babies this summer, I’m editing it a bit to reflect my (much more positive) experience with my second born, and adding links to other useful posts I have on HLW. Enjoy!

Advice to New Parents

The most important advice I can give you: Parenting this child is going to be a unique experience, and while other people’s advice might be useful, it is not the Law. Sift through everything and keep...

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Snippets: Breastfeeding Resource Page

I’ll be updating this page periodically as new info comes to me. Feel free to add your own favorite links in the comments!

Pro-breastfeeding info and resources
BreastfeedingOnline: The Importance of Human Milk.

I love this article called “Nursing is more than breastfeeding and every mother can do it.” We hear so much about the nutritive benefits of breastfeeding that the emotional, psychological, and developmental benefits of the breastfeeding-type contact get sidelined. Even mamas who don’t feed their babies from the breast can still engage in a valuable nursing relationship with their babies.

PhDinParenting’s The Scientific Benefits of Breastfeeding and The Economics of Breastfeeding:...

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Snippets: How (and why) to eliminate dairy (and/or soy)

I’m compiling a list of resources here for anyone who needs to drop milk products from their diet. I run into this question a lot from breastfeeding moms with fussy babies and want to have a starting point for them. I will definitely be adding to this list over time, but I wanted to get it published right away for a mama in need.

Eliminating dairy is one of the first things I suggest for infants with digestive issues or excessive fussiness. Dairy elimination is also a great first step in reducing ear infections in kids.

When removing dairy from your diet, don’t automatically replace everything with soy substitutes. Many babies with milk intolerance are also sensitive to soy (the proteins...

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Hey Laura, tell me about breastfeeding during pregnancy

HVW writes:

My son is 18 months old and nurses 4-5 times a day, and seems to be in the process of cutting back on his daytime nursing in the past few months. My husband and I are tentatively planning to try for #2 starting in the next few weeks. My son was conceived on the first “try” but you never know how long it will take. My goal is to nurse my first son for at least 2 years, although at this age I do not mind if I end up having to supplement some with cow’s milk or other dairy products (he does eat cheese at this time but I don’t give him cow’s milk).

I know that often pregnancy reduces or dries up milk supply. I have seen a variety of data on how many women do lose their milk supply...

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Snippets: Gifts for New and Expecting Parents

A while ago (before I started this blog), a friend of mine asked for some suggestions for useful and unique gifts for new and expecting parents. I’ve expanded my original answer just a bit for posting here. These aren’t your run-of-the-mill diaper cakes and layettes! ;)

Big Stuff
If the new parents are particularly special to you, or if you are feeling particularly generous, here are some big ticket items I highly recommend.

Miyo Baby Baby Hammock - Just what it sounds like - it’s a great bed alternative for the first 5-7 months. I like the Miyo best because it is simple and has a really beautiful looking stand, but there are other brands/styles like: the Kanoe, the Hushamok, which has a...

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