Safely Storing Your Stash: Tips for Pumping Moms

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Image via Flickr/ Chris Pelliccione

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post written for Tommee Tippee because they feel their products would be a great fit for our readers, and we agree!

Whoever coined the phrase “no use crying over spilled milk” obviously never spent any time strapped to a breast pump. Any mama who has gone through the challenges of pumping knows that every drop collected is worth more than gold. So when your husband accidentally dumps out the four ounces (four ounces!) that you left sitting on the counter and you manage to contain your frustration and tears, you deserve a commendation.

That being said, there are steps you can take to help ensure that all of your milk makes it to the intended destination – your baby's belly.

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Image via Tommee Tippee

Set up a pumping station for yourself with all the necessary supplies, including plenty to drink, all the necessary mechanics, a picture of your little one, and something that has his or her scent. Having everything on hand and ready to go can make the task simpler – something that is a big deal in your already busy life. If you are pumping at home and at work, see if you can establish a space for yourself in both spaces. If your employer understands that a better set-up equates to faster and easier pumping – and a happier employee – they should be willing to work with your needs.

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Image via Tommee Tippee

Find a storage system that works for you. Labeling and storing milk appropriately ensures that your baby gets what he needs when he needs it. If you're pumping full time, you'll probably be working on a decent freezer stash. Make sure to consider the size of the portions you freeze and clearly date each portion. If you're just an infrequent pumper who wants a chance to get out of the house worry-free once in a while you might be able to get away with simply refrigerating and rotating your supply. Keep in mind that each mom needs to find the right system for their needs, so don't be afraid to try different methods.

{ MORE: How to Gain Weight While Breastfeeding }

 

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Image via Flickr/ alberth2

Make sure you're following the safety guidelines for pumped milk.

Pumped milk can be stored:

  • at room temperature for 4 to 6 hours, but the earlier you can refrigerate it the better.
  • in a cooler bag with ice packs for up to 24 hours, which may be important for traveling mamas. Avoid opening the cooler except to replenish ice supply.
  • in a refrigerator for from 3 days up to 8 days. Keep it away from the door to minimize temperature fluctuations.
  • in a freezer for 3 to 6 months.
  • in a deep freezer for 6 to 12 months.

Heat refrigerated or frozen milk according to guidelines so that you can safely serve it to your little one.

Thaw frozen milk overnight in the refrigerator or under cool running water.

Heat milk by running under warm water or in a pan of heated water. Do not microwave.

Or, you can try to simplify things and see if your baby will drink the milk straight out of the fridge. Some babies don't mind at all and it's one less step for you!

{ MORE: The Best New Breast Pumps and Accessories This Spring }

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post written for Tommee Tippee because they feel their products would be a great fit for our readers, and we agree!

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Safely Storing Your Stash: Tips for Pumping Moms

Sara McTigue is a secret agent, cupcake chef, award winning author, photographer, and PTA mom. At least, that is how things look in her mind. When she isn’t testing the bounds of her imagination, she is a mom to three amazing and hilariously funny children, wife to a charming and handsome man, and thoroughly addicted to reading. With a BS in English Education and an MA in English Literature, words – and their ability to shape our lives and thoughts – are an everyday fascination. Af ... More

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