Happy Mothers Breastfed Babies
Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: What does a "good"stash look like?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    292

    Default What does a "good"stash look like?

    I have about 72 ounces right now. I'm curious what others have.
    I go back to work in 2 weeks, DD will be 11 weeks then. I used up all of my frozen stash pretty quickly when I had my older child and want to avoid that again. I will be pumping at work which will provide (hopefully) enough for next days bottles, so my stash is for "just in case". So what's a good number of ounces to have? Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    520

    Default Re: What does a "good"stash look like?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*littleman721 View Post
    I have about 72 ounces right now. I'm curious what others have.
    I go back to work in 2 weeks, DD will be 11 weeks then. I used up all of my frozen stash pretty quickly when I had my older child and want to avoid that again. I will be pumping at work which will provide (hopefully) enough for next days bottles, so my stash is for "just in case". So what's a good number of ounces to have? Thanks.
    I went back to work last Oct when DD was between 11 and 12 weeks. I probably had 90 oz. frozen.

    Additional FYI: I took my first business trip in April when she was about 9 months and I had 150 oz frozen. I was gone about 60 hours so theoretically she could have taken 90 oz in my absence at the 1.5 oz per hour away rule of thumb but she didn't. I pumped while I traveled and was actually able to freeze all my milk in my hotel room and my remote office in the location to which I traveled. I had brought ice packs and small and large zipper bags. I packed it all on ice packs in my checked luggage and got it home still frozen (except what I pumped traveling back) and put 60 to 70 oz back in my freezer. I will say it was just about starting to slush but I made it.

    I'm not a super high vol pumper even with a Medela PISA so I have to rent a hospital grade pump to get the next day's supply for DD. We're at 10 months now and with that pump, the Medela Symphony, I get what she needs pretty much every day. On Fridays I freeze what I've pumped and use the oldest frozen milk for Monday so we're continually keeping fresher frozen milk on hand.
    1st time mom over 40 to Alex(andra) b: 7/14/12

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    569

    Default Re: What does a "good"stash look like?

    I am not a tremendous pumper. I barely squeak out what I need for the next day. That said, I only managed to make it to 50 oz. stashed before my return to work. My daughter is 6 mo. old now, and I haven't needed to touch my stash. I have started rotating it (I have a deep freezer, so that stash is good for 6-12 months), but I only do it a bag here and there at a time.

    How did you wind up burning through stash last time? Trouble pumping? Pump slump after some number of months? Baby overfed by caregiver? Like you said, ideally the stash is for "just in case," so ideally you shouldn't have to have tons of milk unless you need to travel away from baby for work!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    292

    Default Re: What does a "good"stash look like?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*sonogirl View Post
    How did you wind up burning through stash last time? Trouble pumping? Pump slump after some number of months? Baby overfed by caregiver? Like you said, ideally the stash is for "just in case," so ideally you shouldn't have to have tons of milk unless you need to travel away from baby for work!
    Well it was a mix of care giver over feeding, low supply after AF returned and probably a bit of naivety. It was almost 5 years ago so it's hard to remember. I ended up having trouble pumping enough at work to make the next days bottles and ended up dipping into my stash. Once it was gone and after much struggle to do anything I could ( I was up every 3 hours in the middle of the night while DS sttn to pump to try to get enough for next days bottles) I ended up supplementing with formula and it just killed me to do it. I DO NOT want to have to do that again, so I'd like to have a stash big enough to supplement if my supply tanks again to keep her EBF for at least the one year mark, if not a little longer. I'm lucky to have experience on my side this time, so at least I can be prepared. I don't have a deep freezer...so I know what I have now wont last too long. I wonder if I should replace one old frozen with a fresh one each day and keep my stash current but not depleted. What I mean is let's say I pump enough for 3 bottles at work, instead of giving her all 3 of those next day, I freeze one and pull out an old frozen one and add it to the other 2 for the next day.Thoughts?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    56

    Default Re: What does a "good"stash look like?

    I think it really varies from woman to woman what you will need. I had 25 oz in the freezer when I went back to work. I haven't needed it yet. DS is 14 months now.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    520

    Default Re: What does a "good"stash look like?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*littleman721 View Post
    Well it was a mix of care giver over feeding, low supply after AF returned and probably a bit of naivety. It was almost 5 years ago so it's hard to remember. I ended up having trouble pumping enough at work to make the next days bottles and ended up dipping into my stash. Once it was gone and after much struggle to do anything I could ( I was up every 3 hours in the middle of the night while DS sttn to pump to try to get enough for next days bottles) I ended up supplementing with formula and it just killed me to do it. I DO NOT want to have to do that again, so I'd like to have a stash big enough to supplement if my supply tanks again to keep her EBF for at least the one year mark, if not a little longer. I'm lucky to have experience on my side this time, so at least I can be prepared. I don't have a deep freezer...so I know what I have now wont last too long. I wonder if I should replace one old frozen with a fresh one each day and keep my stash current but not depleted. What I mean is let's say I pump enough for 3 bottles at work, instead of giving her all 3 of those next day, I freeze one and pull out an old frozen one and add it to the other 2 for the next day.Thoughts?
    Just freeze whatever you pump on Fridays and defrost from your oldest milk on Sunday night for Monday.
    1st time mom over 40 to Alex(andra) b: 7/14/12

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    middle of IA
    Posts
    1,885

    Default Re: What does a "good"stash look like?

    i think the key to not running into problems is to deal with it IMMEDIATELY when you aren't making enough - like, the next day, or certainly that week. if you continually are using freezer stash, even slowly, then you're just delaying the inevitable disaster where you run out. but if you address the supply issue right away, then you still have your stash as your cushion while you get your supply back where it needs to be. this can result in a little obsessiveness if you're not careful - i was counting every single oz every single day, and i hope not to go quite so crazy next time. good luck!
    DS1 6/7/11
    DS2 10/29/13

    Nursing, pumping, cloth-diapering, babywearing, working professor mama with the awesomest SAHD ever.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    569

    Default Re: What does a "good"stash look like?

    I too think you are fine to freeze Friday and defrost for Monday. I don't do the full day rotation like that simply because I spilled a bag early on, and now I am gunshy about pouring my bags into bottles!

    I agree with the PP that getting a hand on pump output problems right away is key. Troubleshoot the pumping, troubleshoot possible overfeeding, any of that. Of course, just because you had problems once does not mean you'll have trouble this time around! For me though, it is essential that my baby not be overfed. I make just exactly what she needs, I have never had even a touch of oversupply, and I pump on the low end of normal output. So what has saved us is the process of educating her caregiver about the 1-1.5 oz per hour of separation rule, and really working to optimize her feeding that way.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    465

    Default Re: What does a "good"stash look like?

    I agree with PPs that the answer to "how much is enough" is "it depends." If you anticipate any long separations from baby (like being away for more than a work day -- like for example, if you know your work will require you to travel, or you have any other trips planned and you know baby won't come with you) then you will want a bigger freezer stash, in preparation for those times (1-1.5 oz/hour baby is away from you). But if it's a "just in case" freezer stash, you don't need as much -- provided you are ready to troubleshoot pump output or overfeeding issues very quickly if they arise.

    Personally, I have a big freezer stash because my baby refused the bottle for his first two months at daycare! And I haven't traveled for work yet, so I've only dipped into the freezer stash for two reasons:

    1) Growth spurts, when baby was super hungry at daycare and wanted more than my daily pump output (at those times, I gave my daycare several frozen 2 oz packets from my stash and they would use them only on baby's super hungry days)
    2) Illness (on my part) because it knocks my supply back a bit until I recover

    Looking back on those times, 70 oz (the amount you have saved) would have covered it. Other than that, my big freezer stash is just a giant security blanket that I have to make an effort to rotate through so it doesn't expire (and I've already donated some of it to a milk bank). It's a lot of work to make a big freezer stash that you might not use :/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Cleveland, OH
    Posts
    494

    Default Re: What does a "good"stash look like?

    One week before I went back to work I had exactly zero ounces of pumped milk. I had focused so much on regulating my oversupply that I had completely forgotten that I needed at last one day's worth of milk for bottles. Over the next week I pumped an ounce here and there to scrape together just enough to get through the first day. From that point on I was able to pump what he needed day to day and put away an ounce here and there.

    I never saw a freezer stash as a security blanket of any kind. I left DS with his grandparents for a weekend when he was 10mo, and that was really the only time I saw any benefit from having some milk stored up. Using frozen milk to supplement what I pumped during the day never even crossed my mind, because if I had a bad pumping day then I would pump more. Usually the first pumping session of the day would give a good indication as to whether or not I would need to throw in another pumping session and I could plan accordingly, or tack one on in the evening.

    Maybe I am naive due to my lack of supply problems and rather easy ability to pump, but having a large freezer stash as a "just in case" for every day bottles seems like a recipe for disaster. It could become too easy to top off with an ounce of frozen every once in a while, and then that becomes an every day thing, and then you need two ounces, and so on.
    My little man was born 12/17/2010.

    Baby girl was born 4/30/2014.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •