Sunday, February 28, 2010


As Baby approached her first birthday, to be honest, I started counting down the days until we could stop breastfeeding. I had set a goal to breastfeed for her first year of life. It was a wonderful experience, especially when she was a sweet little newborn, but by the time she was a year old she was getting wiggly and bound to spring teeth any day (which didn't happen until 18 months, but who could have predicted that?). Plus, the grandparents were all excited for an overnight visit from Baby, and Nick and I started planning a weekend at a bed and breakfast. Baby had already started solid foods by then, of course, but a large portion of her nutritional needs would still be fulfilled with milk. With all of the controversy about milk these days, I began researching what option would be the best for my little girl.

Here's a very brief summary of what I learned about the current problems with cow's milk*. In an effort to make more money, many dairy farmers give their cows the artificial growth hormone rBGH, created by the corporation Monsanto (big surprise). This added hormone is banned in most of Europe and many other parts of the world. It's my understanding that rBGH increases milk production in cows, but because their bodies are often not able to handle the added milk, it can cause mastitis (an infection). To treat the mastitis, cows are given antibiotics, which theoretically pass into our milk and could potentially not be great for our health.

The other controversy related to rBGH is that the added hormones themselves may be bad for our health. Consumer advocate groups theorize that it can be a cause of early puberty in children. However, several studies have disproven this theory, and it seems that the rise in early puberty is more likely related to an increase in childhood obesity. It is, however, possible that rBGH may be linked to cancer in humans.

While much is still unknown, I decided that it was important to find a milk clear of rBGH for Baby. My criteria for The Ideal Milk was:
  • rBGH-free
  • Locally produced (for environmental and economic reasons)
  • Affordable
Now, I'm not going to list all of the options for milk available in Colorado Springs, because there are MANY, but I will name a few that I considered:
  • Robinson Dairy: While local and convenient (they deliver to your home), the prices were a bit high for the amount of milk we drink.
  • Organic milk available at the grocery store: Not locally produced and pretty expensive.
  • Raw milk from a local farmer: Although arguably the most healthful option for adults, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies be fed only pasteurized dairy products. Plus, it's usually VERY expensive.
  • Colorado Proud milk: I shop at King Soopers, and Colorado Proud is the brand name of their cheapest milk. It's usually priced around $1.68 - $2.29 per gallon. Not only is it locally produced (I'm defining "local" as "Colorado" here), but it's rBGH free!
So, surprise, surprise, the least costly option ended up being the best choice for my family.

Now I'm curious: If you choose organic milk for your family, what is your reasoning? Am I missing something?

*I'm sorry, I can't quote sources for you...I think I learned the most from Barbara Kingsolver's "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle", but I also did some internet research, and this was nearly a year ago so I don't remember where I found most of it.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Denver's Downtown Aquarium

Baby watching some "pishies".

Nick's sister Elise, Grandma Carol and Baby experiencing a flash flood.

Grandpa Jim, cousin Joey, Daddy and Baby hanging out while sharks and sting-rays swim overhead.

Baby ever-so-cautiously standing on glass while sharks swim underneath.

Overlooking the tiger enclosure.

Baby touching a sting-ray.

Cute new word of the day: "Fishy Horsies" instead of Seahorse.

Sunday, February 7, 2010


I thought I'd do some baby bump modeling in celebration of reaching the halfway point in my pregnancy! We learned that we are expecting a baby boy a couple weeks ago with an ultrasound, and more importantly, we learned that he seems to be growing at just the right pace and appears perfectly healthy. My morning sickness lasted until about week 16 this time around, so for the past month I have felt absolutely fantastic. I've been swimming at the gym often after discovering at the very end of my first pregnancy that weightlessness is a wonderful feeling when you're packing on the pounds.

Thank you to everyone who commented on my post a couple weeks ago when I asked your advice about the epidural versus a natural birth. Since I am not strongly opinionated about either option, it was nice to read all of your experiences and gave me a lot to think about.

20 weeks down, only 20 to go! Hopefully the nesting instinct kicks in at some point...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Just a Couple Pictures

Baby enjoying the awesome play area at Focus on the Family.

Making a big mess with her little indoor sandbox (of rice). The 30 minutes of solid entertainment are worth the 2 minutes of vacuuming when she's done.

You guys know how bad I am about taking pictures, so that's all I have for now. Well, aside from half a dozen naked pictures from when she escapes and runs around "Hanky" (her word for naked) after her bath!