Our Naughty Little Boy Strikes Again!

Funny way to start our day!

Big C left for work early today while I was still sleeping, but he couldn't find his car keys. So when I sent him a message to say good morning, he replied with a message asking me to look for it. Yaya and I looked all over the place, because J was playing with it yesterday, but we couldn't find it anywhere so we started to panic. But I had a feeling that the little rugrat would know where the keys were so we waited for him to wake up.

So J wakes up and we all ask him where Daddy's keys were. I assured him that Mommy wasn't angry, but that I needed his help to find the keys. I was desperate enough to bribe him with an early morning car ride. J just looks at me for a long moment, then clambers down from his bed and crawls straight towards the stairs, so I carried him downstairs.

When I put him down on the floor, he climbs onto the sofa and peers down the back of it. When we moved the couch, the keys were there!

Oh, little boy! As my MIL would say, one person hides something, a hundred people have to look for it!

Hope this made you smile, mommies, cause it sure made me smile. :-)

Hospital Bag Checklist

Since I found myself with some free time on my hands, I decided to work on a Quadrant 2 (important, but not urgent) task, which is making my checklist of things to bring to the hospital for when I give birth.

I overpacked when I gave birth to J since I wasn't really sure what we needed. This time around, I pared my list down to the bare essentials. While this list may look long to you, it's a lot shorter compared to what I had  in preparation for J's birth. This list will change depending on your needs or your husband's needs. Don't forget to pack stuff for Daddy too, since he'll be at the hospital with you as well. We often focus so much on the things we'll need and the baby's things, that we might end up forgetting about Daddy. :-) Believe me, I learned that the hard way.

Mommy’s Things
Little C’s Things

Button-down pajamas (2)

Long-sleeved tie-sides (3)

Extra white t-shirt (2)

Pajamas (3)

Underwear (3)

Hat (2)

Socks (2)

Socks (3)
Toiletries/Personal Care

Mittens (4)

Sanitary napkins
Gauze diapers (3)

Feminine wash
Receiving blanket (1)

Swaddling blanket (2)

Baby wipes
Bath towel (1)

Washcloths/Burp cloths (4)
Breastfeeding Needs

Nursing Bras (2)

Baby wipes

Nursing cover

Cotton squares

Nursing pillow

Disposable diapers
Extra blanket

Other Needs

Eating stuff
Phone chargers

Dish soap and sponge
Baby book

Plates (3)

Utensils (3)

Paper Towels

Microwaveable mugs (3)
Important documents

Microwaveable bowls (1)

Mom’s birth certificate


Dad’s birth certificate

Drinking water

Marriage contract

Paper Towels

Papers for medical insurance

Important Tasks
Daddy’s Things
Charge camera batteries
Jacket (it gets cold in hospitals)
Contact cord blood banking service
Extra set of clothes
Contact pediatrician

So, mommies, did I miss anything?

Mommy Products To Try

My shopping preferences have dramatically changed since I became a mother. Shoes, clothes and accessories hardly catch my attention, but bring me to a baby store, any baby store? Well, good luck trying to drag me out of there.

As mentioned in a previous post, mommies can sometimes go a little overboard when buying things for their kids. Factor in today's internet-based economy, where there's a lot of great products for mommies to try for themselves, and you could really go on a shopping frenzy.

With Little C on the way, I've gotten a little more cautious about what stuff to buy. Not everything is a must-try for me, but here are some products that I would personally recommend for new mommies to consider buying. Three of them are new products for our household to try, while the other two are mommy/baby products that I'm looking forward to revisiting with the wisdom gained from my experience with J.

1. The Swaddler - I know he liked the feeling of being swaddled, because he'd sleep better while swaddled, but swaddling him using a receiving blanket never held him for too long. Plus, diaper changes were always nerve wracking. Since you had to unwrap the entire thing to get at his butt, there was always the risk of waking him up. With Little C, I decided to invest in swaddling blankets. For the most part, we ordered swaddling blankets from the US, but I'm also considering purchasing a Woombie as well, just to see which works better.

2. Sophie the Giraffe Teether - We actually bought this during a moment of weakness (and after several loving bites from my teething vampire). We had J try it out, but he was too happy chomping on the rest of his toys, and on us, to even give it a shot. So Sophie goes back in her box to wait for Little C. I'll train him to nibble at Sophie from the get-go so we save ourselves a lot of pain, literally.

3. 2oz. Breastmilk Storage Bottles - My breastpump came with a set of 5oz. bottles, but not all moms are immediately blessed with the ability to pump out 5oz of breastmilk. I remember being so disheartened when I saw how little milk I came up with after each pumping. They barely came to half of the bottle. So when I saw these tiny little bottles at the Medela House, I fell in love with them because they look much easier to fill up. I'm hoping that seeing a full, although small, bottle of breastmilk can also pump up (pardon the pun) my confidence and boost my milk supply. Other upsides? They're stackable, so they'll take up less space and look much more organized in the refrigerator compared to the 5oz bottles.

4. SaYa Baby Sling - I bought my SaYa soon after giving birth to J. But as a new mom who was still getting the hang of handling a seemingly fragile human being, I was really nervous about maneuvering his little body into the sling and I ended up just using it when he was older. But now, with Little C, I'm looking forward to pulling out my SaYa again and trying some of the positions that are recommended for newborns.

I'm also considering the ring sling, because I think it will help with breastfeeding Little C. While attending La Leche meetings, I've noticed lots of mommies using the ring sling while breastfeeding and it looks very easy and convenient to use. Speaking of babywearing and slings, there are two babywearing events coming up. One is this the Babywearing Meet 4, for this Saturday, but I think registration for this event has been closed already. I was hoping to attend it, since sellers of baby carriers will be there to answer questions and give a demo of their products, but prior plans have already been made. The other one will be on April 28 at the Medela House, and I will definitely be there. (Click on the links for more details on the two events.)

5. Last, but certainly not the least, Lactation Muffins from Mommy Treats! - I think I'm looking forward to these most of all. Haha. I tried these muffins while breastfeeding J to try and increase my milk supply (the banana oatmeal ones are my favorite!). Amount wise, it increased only by a little bit, but what I really liked was the noticeable difference in the quality of my milk. It was thicker and creamier-looking. That's because these little babies, baked with care by Mommy Paola Loot, are packed with various galactogogues, or substances that help increase milk supply. When I asked another breastfeeding mommy about products she could recommend for increasing milk supply, she immediately said, "Lactation cookies (they also have cookies) from Mommy Treats!" She nibbled on them at night when she got hungry and it helped boost her supply.

So mommies, if you're interested in trying these products, they are available from the following sellers: Mama.Baby.Love, Caleb's Closet Ecostore, Momtrepreneur Shop, Medela HouseMamaway and Mommy Treats.

*Disclaimer: All the shops mentioned in this post are shops that I have personally purchased items from, which is why I recommend them for other mommies. The products may also be available from other sellers. :-)

My Medela House Experience

Hello all!

I stopped by the Medela House in New Manila yesterday to get my breastpump cleaned. I made an appointment for 1pm, but because of a doctor's appointment that ran long, I didn't get there until 2. However, Mommy Maricel of Medela Moms was kind enough to accommodate my schedule. For those of you who don't know, Medela House entertains moms on an appointment basis because they really want to give each mommy the time and attention they need to discuss their concerns. Case in point, when I got to Medela House yesterday, Maricel and her husband were the ones who were manning the fort. Her husband personally attended to receiving my pump and explaining what they would be doing to it, while Maricel attended to another mommy who was there for a demo.

Here's the diagnosis on my Medela Pump-In-Style Advanced (PISA):

  • They checked the suction power on my pump, and we found out that it was operating at below optimal level because of the adapter I was using. They recommended buying the Medela adapter, but it was a bit too pricey and I left it in the capable hands of my electrical genius, a.k.a. Quakerdaddy, to find a solution for the problem. 
  • My pump had experienced some milk backflow, which accounted for the uber-gross spots on my tubing. Ew. It was recommended that I purchase a new set of tubing before using the pump again because it can get moldy.
  • Otherwise, my pump was in good condition!  As a Medela Moms member, the diagnosis for the pump was free of charge, but because I didn't purchase the pump from them, it wasn't covered under the Medela House warranty. However, I found the labor charge for the cleaning reasonable.
I was also able to chat with Maricel after she finished with the other mommy and she gave me some nice tips on using my PISA.
  • To prevent backflow, you can do the following things: (1) When you're pumping, make sure the membrane (the white rubber thingie) is facing left or right, but not towards you. (2) Sit up straight. Don't slouch and don't lean backwards. (3) When the outward squirt of milk is too forceful, don't max out the pump, because the milk could splash into the hole connecting to the tubing instead of the hole into the bottle.
  • She recommended that I purchase the Calma teat (shown in the picture), instead of using the teat that came with the breastpump. Since it's designed to make babies work their mouths in the same way they would if they directly fed from their moms, this will help me and Little C avoid the problem of nipple confusion if I should need to give him a bottle instead of letting him latch. 
I was also planning on checking the fit of my breastshields, but Maricel adamantly said no. To do that, we'd have to actually use the pump, which could cause contractions and result in premature labor. She recommended that I wait until after my 37th week. I really appreciated this, because it made me feel that the people at the Medela House genuinely care for my well-being and my baby's well-being.

Before I left, Maricel invited me to join them this Saturday (March 31) for the Yaya seminars. From 8am-12nn, it's Basic First Aid/Crime Prevention/Safety Concerns and from 1pm-3pm it's Toddler Care. Unfortunately, I can't make it, but for interested mommies, you can contact the Medela House through 0917-5614366. Please text your name and email address for registration instructions.

And now, my little one is finally up and it's time to start our day! Good morning, mommies!

Work-At-Home Mom-me: Part 1 - How It All Started

I realized that I have yet to write about my experiences as a work-at-home mom, so I decided to write a series of posts about my experiences about being a work-from-home mom. This first post shares my back story and how I stumbled into working from home. Upcoming articles will talk about the challenges I faced, a typical day and the benefits of working from home.

Before, moms only had two options: work at the office or stay home, taking care of your family. But now the best of both worlds are at our fingertips, mommies.

A short background. Fresh out of college, I worked as a high school teacher for four years. While teaching is a noble profession, it is not a lucrative one, and I was already supplementing my income by providing tutoring services and writing for online services. When Big C and I decided to get married, we decided that it was best that I stop teaching and instead focus on online writing, since it paid better and was less stressful and tiring for me. I loved teaching, but it took so much out of me, physically and emotionally and I just didn't want to bring that home to my husband every day.

The work eventually dwindled out and as a new homemaker, my energies were focused towards learning the ways of running our little household. We didn't have a maid then; with only two people in the house, Big C and I felt that it was an unnecessary expense. It was all just me. We only hired a maid to help me out when I was 4 months pregnant with G. That left me a lot of free time to do nothing but grow my baby in my tummy.

But after we lost G, I was adrift and looking for something to distract me. My sister, D, at that time, a graduating engineering student, was recruited by a US-based data consulting company. She was doing statistical analysis, helping out foreign MA, MS and PhD students with their theses and dissertations. It paid really well on a per project basis and if you worked hard enough, you could earn more than $1200 a month just writing from home. For a college student, that was a lot of money. For a stay-at-home mom who is looking for supplemental income, especially one who sorely needed to be distracted from wallowing in grief, it was a godsend.

My youngest sister, K, and I decided to apply together, sharing one work account and dividing the projects and income between the two of us. Although I was a bit skeptical at first (Math and statistics are NOT my thing. At all.), my sister was patient enough to coach me through most of my first projects. With time, I got the hang of it and it got easier. Plus, it really was no different from all those papers I had to write as a college student, and writing has always been my forte. Sometimes, our data analysis work included basic editing and revisions of papers already written, or making presentations for defenses. That's the easy part. The data analysis part is something that I had to work on, and I still work on learning more about it up to this day.

I had very little money saved when we got married; like I said, teaching is a noble profession, not a lucrative one. But although I never reached my sister's earnings level (She works really fast since math and statistics are right up her alley. It takes me a lot more time since I still have to do research.), the money I made was more than enough for me, and I soon built up a little nest egg of my own, even while sharing the work account with K. Since Big C takes his responsibility as the provider very seriously, I never had to touch the money I made and it was tucked into an account for a rainy day.

I kept working while pregnant with J. (I think that's why I gained a lot of weight during that pregnancy. I got no exercise since I was in front of the computer for almost 8 hours a day.) I stopped working a month before I gave birth to give myself some much needed rest time and to prepare the things J needed. By stopping, I meant not taking on any new projects, but still working on revisions from my old ones. K was taking over most of the work, and keeping the account alive until I could come back in a few months.

After J's birth, I didn't go back to work until about 3 months after, when our household had finally settled into a routine and I managed to work out a schedule between nursing my son, spending time with him, managing the house and pumping what I could of my breastmilk. Work production, needless to say, was at an all-time low, but it didn't matter to me. Important thing was, I was earning again.

Now, at almost 32 weeks pregnant with Little C, I am still working. Things are a little bit more complicated now that J is an active toddler who demands more time and attention, but luckily, we've been managing. I'm still pulling in a decent salary, not much, but enough to set aside in our rainy day account or for surprises for Big C and J. I plan to stop taking on new projects after April and just work on revisions in May, while I rest in preparation for Little C. Hopefully, as I did with J, I'll be able to come back to work in a few months. Based on previous experience, it won't be easy, and it will take time, but that's another post for another day.

Have a great day, all!

What's In A Name?

As a parent, one of the tasks that I took most seriously was choosing a name for my sons because it's something that they'll have to carry for the rest of their lives. (I do have to say that the naming process was an exercise in patience, since Big C used every session to needle me, just because he could.) After our gender determination ultrasound, I immediately scoured baby name books and pored over internet sites to look for inspiration and tips on how to name a baby.

So what did we end up with?

All the names are very masculine and strong-sounding, very appropriate for the big strapping boys I'm sure they'll be (based on family trends). The two names we chose for G, our eldest son, means "strength of God" and "belonging to the Lord". He was also named after the patron saint for hopeful mothers. It's a name that fits him well, since we didn't have much time with G. Our strong little boy now belongs with the angels, watching over his hopeful mother.

Our second son, J, has a pretty common first name, so we chose a more unusual middle name for him, as an alternative he can use if he ends up with 5 classmates with the same name. I was initially hesitant to use one of the names because it's most associated with the biblical character who took the place of his older brother, and I didn't want J to feel that he was in any way a replacement for G. We only decided to use the name when I found an alternate meaning, which was "may God protect". His middle name means "prudent", a trait or virtue Big C and I really want him to have as a person.

Downside to the name we chose for J? He was born in the time when a very popular book and movie franchise came out, so people would constantly ask us if we were fans. Answer is no, by the way.

And for our youngest? We chose his middle name first, because it was an automatic choice for me. See, I've often felt that in the same way G was taken so suddenly from us, Little C was an unexpected blessing that completed our little family, so the only name I could think of giving him meant "gift from God". The name is one that is easily mangled in terms of pronunciation though, so we're using it as a middle name. His first name means "faithful or loyal". Like big brother J, we gave him a name that stands for a value or trait we want him to have. We want our Little C to be faithful to his family, principles, beliefs and his self.

Strangely, we ended up with names that were very traditional, mostly biblical in origin. A bit surprising, considering that  I'm not very religious. Out of the six names we've chosen for our kids, five of them are based on religious figures, one archangel, two saints, and two prominent biblical characters. Good thing is, we chose classic, non-trendy names that will still sound good twenty, thirty years from now. Best thing of all, we chose names that reflected how we felt about our children and our intentions for them as parents.

Some of the things we kept in mind when choosing names for our sons:

  1. Choose a name that will work whether your child chooses to be a free-spirited artist or a strict Supreme Court judge. In the same vein, be wary of names that are too trendy. They are called trendy for a reason; in a few years they won't be anymore.
  2. Check what your initials spell out. It can be a beautiful tribute to a family member (my cousin's initials spell P.A.T., her mom's nickname), or it can be the subject of jokes when your child is at school (I actually know a kid whose initials spell A.S.S. Seriously.).
  3. Sound the names out. Will they be likely to be mispronounced? In the Philippines, bet on it. If you can butcher it, someone will and your kids may get teased. My middle name was always mispronounced by teachers and it always annoyed me. Do they sound ridiculous? Will your child get teased about his name? In my case, the mispronunciations became grounds for horrible nicknames from my peers. Believe me, if you can make fun of the name, chances are, someone else will too.
  4. While unique names are nice, check to see if you're making your kid's name too unique. They may be constantly asked to repeat themselves, spell it out then have people get it wrong anyways. Big C always has a problem when people ask for his name. If the person is not likely to be a significant part of his life, i.e. Starbucks baristas, he just says his name is Mike to simplify things.
  5. People will sometimes always have comments about the name you choose for your child. Some will like it, some will hate it. In these cases, I'd advise keeping the name to yourselves, and just announcing it when the baby's here and it's a done deal. We only announced the names we chose when we were finally set on them and we felt we I could be oblivious to snarky comments.
  6. If you're undecided, some parents waver between two or three names and wait to meet their child before deciding on a name. 
Good luck with the baby name game, mommies! Happy day to you all! :-)

What I'm Thankful For - March 26, 2012

Another week has flown by, and so many blessings to be thankful for. Looking back on the past seven days, here are the things that have made my week wonderful:
  • Despite the rains and winds of the past few days, the weather yesterday morning was nice enough for Big C and I to take J swimming for the first time ever. Needless to say, he loved it!
  • J has added another sign to his vocabulary, one we made up for "out" or "go out".
  • We found a new trick and we were able to cut J's nails with a minimum of fuss! Big C holds one of J's hands to pretend to need help in cutting Daddy's nails. While J's focused on that, Mommy grabs the other hand and snips as quickly as she can.
  • I was able to work on several projects this week, boosting stay-at-home earnings for this month. 
  • Finally used my groupon voucher to get a much needed manicure and pedicure. I can't reach my feet anymore!
So that's it for this week! Happy Monday to all and cheers to the great week ahead!

Placenta Encapsulation

This morning, I read an article on about Mad Men star January Jones ingesting pills made from her placenta. Although I have heard of this practice already, this is the first time I've heard of a celebrity endorsing it. It intrigued me enough to do a little bit more research on the topic and what I've found out is making me consider encapsulating my placenta for Little C's upcoming birth.

Just a quick brush-up. The placenta is often known as our baby's lifeline during their stay in Hotel Uterus. It's what stores the food and air that will be transferred to the baby via the umbilical cord.

Placenta encapsulation has apparently been part of traditional Chinese medicine for a long time. (If family lore can be trusted, apparently my grandmother also practiced placenta encapsulation when her daughters-in-law gave birth.) Since pregnancy generally causes blood loss, a drop in energy levels and sudden fluctuations in your hormone levels which can cause "baby blues" and postpartum depression, ingesting the placenta is really good for postpartum recovery. The placenta contains a unique blend of your hormones, so by ingesting it, you are replacing the hormones you lost during childbirth with a hormone cocktail that is made especially for your body. And based on the principles of traditional Chinese medicine, the placenta is full of Qi (life energy) and can aid in postpartum recovery by providing your body with much needed natural iron, protein and essential hormones.

The healing properties and benefits of placenta ingestion provide you with the following:

What it is/What it does
Health Benefits
·      Precursor to estrogen, progesterone and testosterone
·      Restore hormone levels
·      Promotes lactation
·      Increases milk production
·      Produced during breastfeeding to facilitate bonding of mother and infant
·      Known as the “love” hormone – can promote a feeling of connectedness with others
·      Helps with pain and bonding
·      Can hasten return of uterus to pre-pregnancy state
·      Stimulates immune system
·      Protects against infection
Thyroid Stimulating Hormone
·      Boosts energy and helps recover from stressful events
·      Increase energy levels – much needed for late night feedings and diaper changes
·      Combats stress and unlocks stores of energy
·      Anti-inflammatory

·      Replenishes depleted iron
·      Prevents anemia
·      Immune booster
·      Helps protect against postpartum infections
Urokinase Inhibiting Factor & Factor XIII
·      Stops bleeding and enhances wound healing
·      Shorten postpartum bleeding

This is all in addition to nutrients and your own personal mix of hormones that are naturally present in the placenta. It also has vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin B6, iron and protein, which are all musts for postpartum recovery. If you store the pills properly, you can also keep them until the time you reach menopause, when they can also help with regulating the hormonal fluctuations.

The process of placenta encapsulation involves three basic steps: washing/cleaning, drying/dehydration and encapsulation. Currently, there are no placenta encapsulation specialists here, but upon the recommendation of Jenny of Chronicles of a Nursing Mom (read about her placenta encapsulation experience here), I called Sr. Regina Liu to ask about their fees. She's a licensed herbalist and acupuncturist who holds office in Quezon City, and their clinic encapsulates the placenta for free for their clients. Unfortunately, they don't help with the preparation of the placenta, but they do give good instructions on how to do it. All you need is a turbo broiler (to dry the placenta) and a food processor or coffee grinder (to crush it into powder). The good, old-fashioned mortar and pestle will also work, but according to the woman I spoke to at the clinic, it might take a longer time.

I'm still on the search to have someone help me with the drying process. I'm sure there's someone in the traditional Chinese medicine community who will know how to do it. Based on the pictures, I'm getting a bit squeamish, so I'm not sure I can do it by myself. Also, based on the research I did, it's safe to ingest your placenta even if you have a medicated birth (using epidurals, C-sections, etc.), but I still want to check with my OB to be sure. Plus, there's also the matter of hospital red tape. I don't know what the rules are about taking my placenta home, but I'll write another post as soon as I find out.

So mommies, placenta encapsulation, yea or nay?

*Information for this post taken from the following sources: Placenta Benefits, Authentic Parenting, PlacentaMom, and Cafe Mom. (Just a warning though, for those who get squeamish at the sight of blood, some of the pictures may be a bit too graphic.)

Breastfeeding is About Public Health, Not Just Lifestyle

Another interesting read for mommies who are still on the fence about breastfeeding. 

My favorite part: “By recognizing that breastfeeding is much more than a personal choice, the AAP is sending a strong message that supporting breastfeeding is an important public health issue that merits societal support from the hospital to the workplace,” writes Hygeia, a breast-feeding site."

Here's the link to the original article on

Why Pediatricians Say Breast-Feeding is About Public Health, Not Just Lifestyle

The American Academy of Pediatrics subtly turns the tables on the breast-feeding conversation with its updated guidelines. No longer is infant nutrition simply a lifestyle choice; it's now a public health issue.
ULTRA.F. / Photodisc / Getty Images
In a quietly worded statement released this week, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has recalibrated the national dialogue on breast-feeding, deeming it a “public health issue and not only a lifestyle choice.”
Much of the statement on infant nutrition doesn’t differ radically from previous versions. But the recognition on behalf of the group’s 60,000 pediatricians that breast is best for mom, baby and the nation’s general well-being is creating buzz in the breast-feeding community.
“By recognizing that breastfeeding is much more than a personal choice, the AAP is sending a strong message that supporting breastfeeding is an important public health issue that merits societal support from the hospital to the workplace,” writes Hygeia, a breast-feeding site.
At Best for Babes, which promotes support for breast-feeding, co-founder Danielle Rigg praised the AAP for equating breast-feeding with public health. “In framing it that way, it becomes all of our responsibility — not just moms — to provide both the infrastructure and the social support to see to it that as many moms and babies as possible can do it,” she says. “If we can do it for breast cancer, we can do it for breastfeeding.”
Dr. Richard Schanler, chair of the AAP’s section on breast-feeding and director of neonatology at Cohen Children’s Medical Center in Long Island, is even more candid. “It’s not should I or shouldn’t I?” says Schanler. “Of course you should. It’s important for the health of your baby. And it’s important for your health too.”
The wealth of new data about the effects of breast-feeding influenced the AAP to update its guidelines. Researchers have found that breast-fed babies have a decreased risk of dying of SIDS, fewer ear infections, less likelihood of obesity or cardiovascular disease And fewer hospitalizations for pneumonia; mothers benefit from decreased risk of breast, ovarian and uterine cancers. Duration is important: “The longer you do it and the more exclusive it is, some of these effects become even more significant,” says Schanler. “Hospitalization for pneumonia is significantly reduced if you exclusively breast-feed for six months as opposed to less than four months. How can you say that’s not important?”
It’s taken about five years, but there’s now consensus from the entire academy. When the previous guidelines were released, exclusive breast-feeding was recommended for six months, followed by an asterisk that directed those devoted souls who actually read policy papers to a footnote: while the AAP’s breast-feeding committee subscribed to a six-month duration, other members supported a time frame of four to six months.
Again what’s changed, says Schanler, is the prevalence of new data. The current policy calls for exclusive breast-feeding for “about 6 months, followed by continued breastfeeding as complementary foods are introduced, with continuation of breastfeeding for 1 year or longer as mutually desired by mother and infant.”
Breast-feeding past one year, notes Schanler, is “not necessarily nutritive.” But it’s certainly psychological. For toddlers, it’s like their security blanket. “We see nothing wrong with it,” says Schanler. “But we are really trying to get the ball rolling so in a sense we are more interested in the early phase to get everyone on track.”
Bonnie Rochman is a reporter at TIME. Find her on Twitter at @brochman. You can also continue the discussion on TIME‘s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.