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5 Breastfeeding Tech Solutions

All the gadgets and apps a savvy nursing mom needs.

5 Breastfeeding Tech Solutions

I knew before I had a baby that breastfeeding would be challenging. As far as I knew, no one in my immediately family had done it because they didn't want to be "chewed up." That turned out to be the perfect way to describe how I felt for the first several weeks of my nursing experience. It seemed like I was running into issue after issue, and since I had little family support, I went through lots of needless trial and error. But as a millennial mama, I should've realized that there was, in fact, an app for that. Here are the apps, gadgets and creative solutions designed to save the savvy breastfeeding mother.

Issue #1: How much milk is your baby getting?

Solution: Momsense

I love my pediatrician, really, I do. But she (and many other pediatricians) are simply not well-versed in lactation education. Used to her roster of bottle-feeding moms, she would ask me at every appointment how many ounces we were getting daily, and I would stare at her blankly. That's where Momsense comes in, a sleek looking pair of headphones with a baby sensor attached. The sensor measures how much milk baby is taking in by calculating their "effective swallows" — and records all this information for you on a handy (and pretty!) smartphone app. It's super satisfying for technical people like me that love statistics. $89.99, Buy it here.

Issue #2: Pumping sucks.

Solution: BeauGen Nipple Cushion

At worst, pumping was unbearable nipple torture that resulted in a pathetic looking spray of milk in an impossibly large 6oz bottle. At best, it was something I had to do if I wanted to leave the house. Thankfully, someone shared my pain and thought up a creative way of relieving it. BeauGen makes a tiny, stretchy, one-size-fits-all nipple cushion that, for me, eliminated nearly all of the discomfort and sizing issues I was having with my pump. The BeauGen is easy to clean, simple to use, and honestly, such an obvious and ingenious solution that I'm embarrassed I didn't think of it myself. As a bonus for this tiny life-saver, it makes pumping more discreet, as the pink cushion obscures your nipple in the flange. $30, Buy it here .

Issue #3: One of my boobs won't stop leaking!

Solution: Milkies Milk-Saver

This was me (and still is most days), perpetually staunching an overflow on my right side only. (Isn't it crazy how breasts have different personalities?) I would be fine nursing or pumping on the right, but if I tried to nurse on the left, I'd have an enormous letdown that would soak the right side of my shirt almost immediately. The Milkies Milk-Saver, seemingly designed with me in mind, allowed me to collect all that breast milk that was going to waste. You simply slip it into your bra or tank on the non-nursing/overzealous side. To be honest, I thought that there was no real point to trying to collect the milk--how much could there be? Turns out that my non-nursing side was leaking nearly two ounces of breastmilk, which the Milk-Saver held with room to spare. Needless to say, I'm now a believer. $27.95. Buy it here.

Issue #4: So many bottles to wash—so little time!

Solution: Kiinde Twist

I have a knack for doing things the hard way. Nursing was no exception. I would pump into one bottle, pour that bottle into a bag, and then pour that bag into a different bottle. Wash, rinse, boil, sanitize, pump, repeat. I found myself always scrambling to match bottles to lids to nipples, and it made pumping even more stressful for me. So, seeking to minimize the chaos, I came across the Kiinde Twist storage system. Kiinde seeks to minimize the transfer (and waste!) of breast milk through a collection, storage and feeding system. You pump directly into a bag, which then can be labeled and stored as is. The system includes a bottle warmer, which heats the milk to the right temperature, and then the same pouch can be snapped into a nipple and holder and used for feeding. It's a genius way to make sure every drop gets used, and to keep unnecessary dishes out of your sink. $31.99. Buy it here.

Issue #5: I'm going out. Where am I going to heat up a bottle?

Solution: Innobaby's warmers

This one's a toughie, because the number one source of convenient heat (the microwave) is a no-no when it comes to heating breastmilk. Innobaby's warmers really shouldn't even be in the bottle warmer category--they're really portable space-age kitchens. Add a packet and a little hot water, and you have an on-the-go heat source that can be used to warm baby bottles, liquids and foods. I love the fact that there's no plug or battery required, and the heat time is pretty fast—less than two minutes! $36.95. Buy it here.

Without camps and back-to-school plans still TBD, the cries of "I'm bored!" seem to be ringing louder than ever this summer. And if you're anything like me, by August, I'm fresh out of boxes to check on my "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys.

With that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite wooden toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

Meadow ring toss game

Plan Toys meadow ring toss game

Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.

$30

Balance board

Plan Toys balance board

Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!

$75

Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.

$30

Water play set

Plan Toys water play set

Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.

$100

Croquet set

Plan Toys croquet set

The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.

$45

Mini golf set

Plan Toys mini golf set

Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.

$40

Vintage scooter balance bike

Janod retro scooter balance bike

Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.

$121

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

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