Join a free breastfeeding support group in Oshawa

Breastfeeding Buddies is a support group for all mothers in Oshawa interested in breastfeeding. The great thing about these type of groups is that they’re not always for moms seeking support, per se. These type of groups are also a great way to meet other moms living in your area who are likely to have something in common with you! All conversation is guided by a trained group facilitator to make sure that the group is a judgement-free zone for any of the questions you ask or experiences you share. Breastfeeding support groups are all about encouraging group members to share their nursing experiences so that everyone can learn from each other.

A poster for the Breastfeeding Buddies Oshawa Support Group

The Breastfeeding Buddies group offers peer support for mothers, children and other family members. The group is held every Friday morning, from 9:30-11:30am in Program Room 1B at the Oshawa Community Health Centre (115 Grassmere Avenue, Oshawa). Refreshments are provided and a Public Health Nurse is also available to help with any concerns.

Cost: There is no cost to attend this drop-in group.

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Find support and meet other local moms with large families

Two parents sit with their four children in a park

There is a group for almost everything and everyone online these days, the key is knowing where to look. The Durham Region Big Happy Families Facebook group is one of those hidden gems. This group was created for moms raising large families in Durham to provide support both online and in-person with meetups. This is a great resource for local information to answer any burning questions that apply to large size families – things like what vehicle to buy to fit the family, how to manage family schedules and more. There are no requirements set by the group for what’s considered a ‘large’ family, so if you feel you fit into this description, I encourage you to join and start meeting some other moms in the area just like you!

 

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Tackle those last minute holiday preparations with a drop-in childcare night

Has the holiday season crept up on you? If you’re anything like me, you might be doing your best to plan for these things but there are always those last few errands that need to be taken care of before Christmas Day arrives.

For those of you that are parents to children over the age of 15 months, UOIT’s Campus Childcare Centre is offering a drop-in childcare night this Thursday from 6.30-9pm. That’s just enough time to visit the Oshawa Mall for some last-minute gift shopping, do a deep clean in the guest room, or wrap the kid’s presents for Christmas Eve!

The UOIT Campus Childcare Centre (CCC)

The Campus Childcare Night will be held at the UOIT Campus Childcare Centre (202 Simcoe St N, Oshawa), this Thursday, December 18th, from  6.30-9pm.

Cost: Care is available at $20 per child, and $10 for every additional child. Space is limited, so registration is required. To register, contact Carrieann Knapp, Supervisor, CCC, at 289.222.0337. To find out more, visit the event page for details.

How to manage a baby meltdown when you’re not at home

Ah, we’ve all been there at some point with baby meltdowns. There comes a time when the cries begin to sound like requests rather than just noise. This is when you begin to hit your stride as a mom and realize you know your little one best. When a baby meltdown hits, I like being home to have everything I need handy. Nursing pillow is always near, there are lots of places to lay down for quiet time, and even a roomful of toys in case baby boredom has struck. But being out of the house with a meltdown on my hands? That takes a special kind of resourcefulness that only a mom can understand.

A baby crying

It takes time to build up the confidence to leave the house for any period of time with baby, especially as you’re learning that perfect mix of items to keep in your diaper bag to help you while you’re out. Here are a few strategies that I’ve learned from my many meltdowns so far:

  • Scan the area for a sympathetic face. If you’re somewhere public like a supermarket or shopping centre, someone will be empathizing with what you’re going through. See if your baby is interested in interacting with this person. The change in energy can lighten the mood for both baby and you.
  • Show baby an item they haven’t seen before. I bring toys with me for baby wherever I go but sometimes even this doesn’t work in my favour. There are usually plenty of items available out of the house for baby to see which always ends up being far more interesting than what I bring along. These don’t need to be other toys either – A kitchen spatula at a department store or a bright red fire extinguisher may catch the attention of those curious little eyes.
  • Consider removing or adding a piece of clothing. If baby is hot, then loosening a onesie or popping open a few buttons on a sleeper can help cool them down. If baby is cold and you don’t have extra layers on hand, consider using a sweater or shirt of your own to drape over them.
  • Find a quiet area to recharge. Overstimulation is tough on a little baby, and what calms them down will depend a lot on their little personality. Public washrooms may seem like a good idea but I’ve found that the loud sounds in a washroom (hand dryers, multiple toilets flushing) can be disruptive. Instead, ask an employee to direct you to a quiet area in a store or venue so that you can be alone with your little one and give them time to calm down.

What are some of your strategies for baby meltdowns? I’d love to hear what’s worked for you in the comments below.

 

pic via earlyinterventionsupport.com

Break out the camera at a local pumpkin patch

One thing that is fast becoming a must-do this month is visiting the pumpkin patch for a photo shoot. The possibilities for some of the best staged photos are endless… big pumpkin, tiny baby… tiny baby, holding tiny pumpkin… This was never much of a thing for me growing up but since visiting a pumpkin patch with my family this year, I’m happy to add this to my growing set of family traditions.

The sign for the Linton's Farm Market surrounded by large pumpkins

One of the higher rated pumpkin patches in the east end of Durham is Linton’s Farm Market.

Access to the pumpkin patch is free. What I liked about this farm is that you can also wander  through the small petting zoo with goats, sheep and chickens before you make your way over to the pumpkin patch to take some photos. There is also a kid’s play area available with a sandpit, play equipment and access to the pumpkin cannon. This section is worthwhile if you’re bringing along kids that can run around, otherwise I wouldn’t recommend paying the $2 admission for entry to this area. For you – and anyone you bring along – there is a large farm market to shop, which includes honey, meats, preserves, apples, beets, garlic, brussels sprouts, carrots and farm decorations (think decorative wheat).

Linton’s Farm Market is located at 571 Raglan Road East, Oshawa. Opening hours vary, and their website recommends calling ahead. As a side note – I visited around lunchtime on a weekend and that seemed to be a good time.

Cost: Visiting the pumpkin patch is free. If you’re interested in bringing home a pumpkin from your visit, the pumpkins in the picture above were priced at $8 each or 3 for $20.

Attend a puppet show at the Oshawa Library

If the weather continues to be this rainy, you might want to consider taking your little one to the Oshawa Public Library this Friday afternoon for a fairy tale puppet show. The group performing the show are performing a series of classic fairy tale stories over the course of an hour! It`s nice to mix up my week with something like this, rather than plonking my little one in front of the TV while I catch up on my afternoon coffee. Plus, this branch has fully accessible washrooms on site which always makes it easier for those of us juggling a baby and diaper bag all at once.

Two fairytale puppets

 

The puppet show will be held from 2.30-3.30pm, this Friday, October 24th at the Oshawa Library, Northview branch (250 Beatrice Street East, Oshawa) in the Nonquon room. You can pre-register for the event on the Oshawa Library website, or at the front desk before the event.

Cost: Free

pic via finesolutions.co.uk

Try a drop-in playgroup in Colombus

The Columbus Playgroup hosts a drop-in program every Friday, where you can bring your little one to play indoors out of the cold. If you’re thinking about daycare options, or even looking to socialize your little one in preparation for daycare, a drop-in option like this is useful. For only $2, your little one can tire themselves out on all the toys, activities and the large gym on site, while you get the chance to chat with other moms in the area.

The Colombus Playgroup Friday Drop-In Program flyer

Cost: $2 per mobile child.

The drop-in program is held every Friday from 9.30-11.30am at the Columbus Community Playgroup located at 3625 Simcoe Street North, Columbus, east of Brooklin and north of Oshawa.  This program is open to members of the public and runs from September 12th – May 29th, 2014 with the exception of all scheduled holidays, Christmas vacation and March break.

pic via Facebook