|Set-up at the pantry|
We also have a refrigerator in the pantry where I store my milk. Meanwhile, my horns go in the plastic box and in the chiller in between pumps. However, there are days that I can’t use the pantry and must pump at my desk. Happily, we are a small office (with only 6 employees in the open office set-up) and my back is against the wall. So when necessary, I pump at my desk.
|Pumping at my desk|
How does my pumping schedule look like? While E is young, I try to squeeze in 4 sessions during the day – 830am, 11-1130am, 130pm-2pm and 4pm-430pm. I previously wrote a post on maintaining my milk supply when I was nursing N and I realized that I kept pretty much the same routine.
What are my pumping essentials? Of course, a good pump – this time, I’m using a Freestyle (which deserves a separate post), a nursing cover, my hands-free band, alcohol (or some other disinfectant), plastic storage case, some paper towels, and of course a refrigerator.
The nursing cover I use is called Pirose made by Reno Rose. It is huge piece of cloth with a hole in the middle where I slip my head through and the fabric fully covers my front and back. I find that this cover is perfect for pumping because I also need to have my back covered, especially when I am trying to wear my hands-free pump band.
With N, I hadn’t discovered the hands-free pump band yet. Now, I can’t imagine pumping without it! Even during my pumping sessions at home, the hands-free pump band is a must. I am able to multi-task, especially when I am working on my desk. The brand I use is PumpEase and I have both the petite and regular sized bands. The petite is cheaper but covers just about 2/3 of your breasts while the regular sized band is wider – giving more support although more expensive.
Update: Pumping bands are locally available: Pumpease from my online store, Mama.Baby.Love and Simple Wishes from Babymama.
It usually takes me about 12-15 minutes to set-up, pump and pack up. I keep my pumping time to about 10-11 minutes and spent the rest of the time packing up. I store the horns in the chiller until the next session – this saves me time as I don’t have to wash or sterilize in between sessions. I also keep my expressed milk in bottles in the refrigerator (not in the freezer) as I have to travel home with the milk and don’t want a drastic change in temperature. Also, refrigerated milk is more nutritious than frozen milk so E takes my refrigerated milk the next day.
During the work week, I keep the expressed milk in the refrigerator at home for E’s consumption. We only freeze whatever is left on Friday night. The frozen milk is stored for future use – to be mixed in E’s food when he starts solids or to be donated (when we run out of freezer space!).
Are you a pumping and working mom as well? What’s your schedule and routine like?