Mama Knows Breast

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Breastfeeding Mom in Maryland Could Face Jail Time for Postponing Jury Duty

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When I was about 36 weeks pregnant with our first baby, I had to go to court for jury duty. I waddled my way into the courthouse and settled uneasily into the wooden bench. Fortunately, the lawyers took one look at me and let me go. Wise decision, I believe. Had they picked me, I would have had to raise my hand every hour to go to the bathroom.
Before that day, I had considered postponing my jury duty until after the baby was born. But I soon realized that didn’t make sense since I was planning to work from home and breastfeed. Without a full-time sitter, jury duty would have been near impossible. I had served on a week-long trial once before, so I knew what I was in for.
Given the challenges of breastfeeding and serving jury duty, there are twelve states that actually exempt breastfeeding mothers from jury duty (California, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oregon and Virginia). Click here to learn about the laws in your state.
So it’s a bit of a surprise to see what’s happened to a Maryland mom. A judge sentenced her to a night in jail or a $150 fine, after she asked to postpone her jury duty. Here’s the story from one of the local TV stations:
Elizabeth Jett’s baby boy Henry was less than 12 weeks old when she was called for jury duty. “I think it’s a case of priorities. Taking care of your children should be your first priority. Jury duty can always come later,” Jett said.
Jett asked to postpone and serve during the Summer, when Henry would be older and her mother, a full-time teacher, could take care of him and his five-year-old brother.
The Carroll County judge said Jett was in contempt of court, which Jett thought was unbelievable. “I was just shocked. I couldn’t even put it into words,” she said.
Legislation that would allow nursing mothers with children under the age of two to be excused from jury duty was introduced for the second time. When the plan was proposed in 2004, many lawmakers shot it down.
Brian Frosh, Chair for the Maryland Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee, said the law would cause more people to try to postpone their duties, “If you start saying, we’re gonna excuse people for breastfeeding, you’ve gotta say ok to kidney dialysis, chemotherapy and all the other maladies that afflict the human condition.”
Frosh said the law already gives judges broad discretion to excuse residents from jury duty, “So what we want is for judges to use their discretion liberally.”
As for Elizabeth Jett, she has since asked for a waiver, because she can’t afford the fine. The judge in the case, Barry Hughes, did not want to comment. The jury commissioner hung up on Andrea McCarren, as soon as she identified herself as a reporter.

Click on this link to watch the video from the TV station. You can read more about this story from the Baltimore Examiner.

Dads and Breastfeeding

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If you’re easily offended, don’t watch this video. If, however, you want to see an irreverant take on breastfeeding, you’ll get a good chuckle out of this one from the guys at Dad

So there you have it, my addition to the February Breastfeeding Bloggers’ Carnival. To see what the other participants have to say, visit these sites:
* Tanya at the Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog has some book reviews.
* Stacie at The Twinkies has a joke for us.
* Sinead at Breastfeeding Mums has a story about a pumping multi-tasking disaster.
* Amy at Crunchy Domestic Goddess shares several, shall we say, “titbits.”
* Carol at Happy Sad Mama shares why she loves to nurse her toddler.
* Angela at Breastfeeding 1-2-3 has some search terms that lead readers to her site.

Christina Aguilera Talks About Breastfeeding on The Ellen Degeneres Show… Plus… A Breastfeeding Comic Strip

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Singer Christina Aguilera stopped by the Ellen Degeneres show recently. She has a new baby, and her low cut green dress prompted Ellen to ask Christina if she was nursing. Watch the clip on YouTube.

And now check this out… a comic strip about breastfeeding. Check out Stone Soup’s take on breastfeeding in public. Click here.

A Video Interview With Me

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The website recently interviewed me, and the story (click here) has some of the best breastfeeding puns you’ll ever come across. It all starts with the headline, “She’s Stacked, Baby.” Now why didn’t I think of that?
If that’s not your thing…just surf around the site to find profiles of people doing pretty cool stuff in all sorts of fields…people like a sneaker designer, a landscape architect and a jazz club founder.
Now click here to watch this video.

Breast Feeding on The Tyra Banks Show

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If only all talk shows would do segments like this one….
Watch Tyra Banks get a lesson in breastfeeding. Click here to watch the video from one of her shows.
And thank you, Black Breastfeeding Blog, for bringing this to my attention.

Breast Feeding Product Reviews

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Angela at Breastfeeding 123 gets my vote today for hardest working, most diligent blogger. My eyes practically jumped out of my head when I saw her latest post.
Angela has compiled a fantastic collection of breastfeeding product reviews. Basically, she found reviews from all the breastfeeding bloggers out there, and provides links to the sites. If you click here, you’ll find reviews of breastfeeding products, books and clothing. If you can think of it, she’s got it. Here’s a list of the reviews:
Breastfeeding bras
Breast pumps
Breastfeeding accessories
Breastfeeding art and calendars
Breastfeeding bloggers’ stores
Breastfeeding and parenting books
Children’s breastfeeding books
Children’s breastfeeding toys
Sewing your own breastfeeding products
Nursing bracelets
Nursing covers
Nursing necklaces
Nursing pads
Nursing pillows
Nursing shirts
Breastfeeding videos
Kids’ products
Bravo Angela. What an invaluable resource you’ve created!

Breast Feeding Links

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Here are some links I’ve found recently that I thought were interesting or amusing:
Babble has a beautiful essay this week called “Breast Friends.” The author describes her experience cross-nursing. She and a friend feed each other’s kids, making them “milk-siblings.”
Can men breastfeed? This short video, Milk Men, claims that they can. Watch and judge for yourself.
Breastfeeding Photos is a blog devoted to breastfeeding photographs. You can supposedly post your own but I haven’t figured out how to do it yet. Even if I could figure it out, I’m not sure I have anything even I want to look at.
Here are two more breastfeeding blogs: Adventures of a Breastfeeding Mother focuses on “breastfeeding, homebirth, mothering and attachment parenting.” Mocha Milk is written by Micky who describes herself as “A fierce brown-skinned mama on a mission to impact the health and wellness of the African-American community through breastfeeding awareness and support.”
And finally, the Celebrity Baby Blog has a post about an article in Us Weekly about breastfeeding celebrities.
Anyone want to add anything to my list? Sites you’ve recently found? Articles or blog entries worth mentioning. Send me your story ideas.

Breast Pumping Video– Can Men Pump and Breast Feed?

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Did you ever find yourself thinking, “I wish, just for one minute, he knew what this felt like”? Maybe you were referring to trying to sleep when you’re 8 months pregnant, or perhaps pitocin-induced contractions.
If so, I’ve found the men for you. Some adventurous dads decided to test drive a breast pump. And that, my friends, is this week’s YouBoob video. It’s coming to you courtesy of the guys at Dad Labs. I found it through one of the bloggers, Dad Gone Mad, on the new site Babble.
Women often pump for ten or twenty minutes a pop. Personally, I’ve had my ups and downs with my pump. So how long do you think this guy lasted? Click here to find out.
So fellas…anyone else up to taking this one step further and trying to breast feed? So men claim they can actually do it!

Breast Feeding Video

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Things have been a little serious around Mama Knows Breast lately. So it’s time to lighten up. Here’s my YouBoob video of the week, courtesy, once again of YouTube.
This is one kid who knows what he wants, and he’s not shy about trying to get it!
Anybody out there have a video of their own they’d like to share? If so, let’s try an experiment. Upload it to YouTube and then send me an email letting me know it’s there.
Personally, all of the videos we’ve shot are sitting in a box in my desk. I don’t have the patience to figure out how to transfer the video to our desktop. It’s not like I used to work in television or anything.

Breast Feeding Videos

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Welcome back from the long Thanksgiving weekend. If you’re like me, you’ve probably been eating your way through the past 4 days. In this family, we had Thanksgiving plus three birthdays to celebrate. So as far as The Bortski is concerned, that means there has been cake every day. As for me, the lingering leftovers drove me to the gym today. And I hate the gym.
After both kids were born, I vowed I would do a twenty minute yoga DVD in the apartment at least 3 times a week. For some reason, I’ve been less than diligent at keeping my resolution. There’s always an obstacle– diapers to change, mouths to feed, laundry to do, emails to write. In reality, it’s most likely laziness that gets in the way. But maybe this video will give you a glimpse into some of the challenges moms face when they try to work out at home. And so, courtsey of YouTube, I bring you my YouBoob video of the week. Click on the photo to watch the clip.
While yoga at home hasn’t worked out that well for me, I have managed to go to a local yoga studio that allows you to bring your baby to class. If you’re in New York City, you’ve got to check out the Prenatal Yoga Center. Maybe this is a better way to get your zen on. Then again, there’s always one or two moms (myself included) who have to stop doing downward dog to breast feed. Thankfully no one objects to the crying!