Blog

My thoughts

My blog journey

I have never thought of starting my own blog until a few days ago. I do have lots of ideas in my head but I have never entertained the idea of publishing or in this case, blogging it for the world to see. I guess what finally pushed me towards establishing my own blog is my need to find an outlet for all the things that are stuck inside my head. Talking about all my ideas to somebody can just go to such an extent until boredom or life kicks in and I am still left having that need for somebody or something to talk about. From that thirst to take out my inner thoughts resulted to the establishment of this blog.

Creating my first blog is quite unnerving. It is like learning how to ride a bike. To tell you the truth it also took me years to have the courage to learn how to ride a bike after my first bike riding attempt resulted in me falling. No, I did not injure myself. I only injured myself once I learned how to ride a bike. Writing a blog, like riding a bike can be quite exciting at a distance but once one delves into the intricacies of creating one, it can be quite overwhelming. To be honest, I still have no clue how my blog would unfold or what kind of topics I would discuss in this blog. However one thing is for certain, I would definitely talk about my parenting journey.  I would talk about topics that interest me as a parent at this moment in time. It is because parenting is the sun that my whole universe revolves around on. Being a parent is my main identity and my main focus and it would just be natural to talk about being a parent in this blog. Amidst parenthood being a central piece of this blog that does not mean I would not talk about other ideas or topics. I know myself too well that my mind would definitely jump from ideas to ideas so this blog would certainly not only focus on parenting that is for sure.

                                                                                                                               ~The Kurdi Mom

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new” by Albert Einstein 

my research paper

Breastfeeding: A Mini Literature Review

I have always encountered discussions regarding how culture impacts breastfeeding decision-making. I therefore decided to make a mini literature review of the current research regarding the topic. I do not pretend that I am knowledgeable regarding this very complex topic. This paper is also NOT PUBLISHED IN ANY JOURNAL ARTICLES. This is only written by a mom who loves research and decided to make an informal research paper. 

To What Extent do Maternal Culture Affect Breastfeeding Decisions and Outcomes?

Abstract

The author conducted a literature search regarding breastfeeding outcomes within the context of maternal culture. The author categorized her findings based on geographical location and ethnic identity—Middle Eastern, Asian, and African. The mini literature review revealed complex and at times contradicting beliefs within a specific culture. Another recurring theme that was consistently mentioned amongst the diverse cultures is the misconception regarding colostrum. The author aims that the literature findings will facilitate future Canadian research endeavors focusing on the breastfeeding implications amongst diverse cultures. Furthermore, the author aims that through this paper’s findings, a culturally competent care will be implemented in the health care setting.

Keywords: breastfeeding, culture, Middle-Eastern, Asian, African, literature review

Taber’s medical dictionary defines breastfeeding as “the giving of mother’s milk to a newborn, infant, or child” (Venes, 2005, p. 312-314; p. 555). Breastfeeding benefits include provision of a “balanced nutritional content,” protection against gastrointestinal and respiratory problems, promotion of overall development, mother-infant attachment, and promotion of uterine contractions post-childbirth (Kramer et al., 2008, p. 578-584; Premani, Kurji, & Mithani, 2011, p. 1-10; Thomas, Williams, & Hartmann, 2010, p. 86-90). Culture, on the other hand, is defined as the shared “attitudes, beliefs, [and] customs” (Venes, 2005, p. 312-314; p. 555). As Canadian society becomes increasingly multicultural, the need for a culturally competent health care becomes apparent in order to address the needs of diverse cultures in terms of breastfeeding decisions and behaviours.

The aim of this paper is to provide and educate health care professionals and the public regarding the complexity of cultural practices and beliefs in relation to breastfeeding decision-making and behaviours. The author reviews relevant research literature and analyzes breastfeeding within the context of Middle-Eastern, Asian, and African Cultures. The author focused her mini literature review upon the following research question: “To what extent do maternal culture affect breastfeeding decisions and outcomes?”

LITERATURE REVIEW

            The author classified the research literature findings into three subcategories—Middle-Eastern, Asian, and African—based on geographical location and ethnic identification.

Middle-Eastern

Jessri, Farmer, and Olson (2013) define individuals of Middle-Eastern descent as “those born and raised in one of the countries located in the Persian Gulf” (p. 43). Middle-Eastern culture is prevalently Muslim and Islamic teachings are deeply influential regarding breastfeeding behaviours (Jessri, Farmer, & Olson, p. 41-56). These beliefs and practices include the command to breastfeed for two years, waiting for three calls of prayer before breastfeeding initiation, cessation of breastfeeding when pregnant, and practice of hiring a wet nurse (Demirtas, Ergocmen, & Taskin, 2011, p. 1109-1118; Jessri et al., 2013, p. 41-56). Furthermore, Middle-Eastern culture tends to be family-oriented and patriarchal resulting in having multiple generations living within one household, a strong reliance on familial advice, and a risk for breastfeeding mothers becoming burdened with household tasks while trying to find balance with breastfeeding the infant (Jessri et al., 2013, p. 41-56). Due to communal households, breastfeeding becomes difficult due to modesty issues facilitating mothers to supplement (Demirtas et al., p. 1109-1118; Renzaho & Oldroyd, 2013, p. 1-12).

These practices have both the potential of positive and negative outcomes. Positive outcomes include the extended duration of breastfeeding and availability of a wet nurse to breastfeed the infant if the mother is unable to do so. The wet nurse can be anyone in the family or within the community that is willing to breastfeed the infant while the mother is busy accomplishing household tasks. In the event of a lack of wet nurse within the community, a milk bank can be established and utilized though it does need rigorous testing and abundance of mothers willing to donate their breast milk. However, the utilization of milk bank can be tricky within Middle-Eastern culture since Islamically the milk donor’s infant and the infant receiving donor’s milk are considered milk siblings. The milk siblings are not allowed to marry so utilization of milk banks are more than likely avoided my Middle-Eastern mothers due to these possible issues. On the contrary, delayed breastfeeding initiation due to observance of the prayers or household chores obligations can result in an increased risk of maternal breast milk insufficiency and colostrum depletion (Thomas et al., 2010, p. 86-90). Additionally, multi-generational households can potentially have a positive effect regarding breastfeeding attitudes, initiation, and continuation. On the other hand, mothers may end up supplementing early due to breastfeeding inappropriateness in front of other family members. Middle-Eastern breastfeeding mothers needs to be provided with familial support in terms of household obligations, as well as, being educated on the health benefits of early breastfeeding initiation.

Asian

According to Chen (2010), Chinese cultural beliefs and practices seek harmony between maternal and infant health (p. 1021-1029). These include the belief of breast milk purity, resting post-childbirth to regain vitality, as well as, positive attitudes with breastfeeding (Chen, 2010, p. 1021-1029). Renzaho and Oldroyd (2013) further states that within Chinese culture, traditional medicines are used to reduce pain and stimulate breast milk production (p. 1-12). Emphasis on maternal health are shared among Chinese, Vietnamese, and Thai cultures involving practices such as resting, tonic soup consumption, steam baths, and massages (Chen, 2010, p. 1021-1029; Schmied et al., 2012, p. 1-15). Furthermore, these cultures also allow women to discontinue breastfeeding when they fear that they are “losing heat” and are too ill to breastfeed (Schmied et al., 2012, p. 1-15).

Amidst prevalent beliefs regarding the psychological benefits of breastfeeding, barriers such as difficulty to breastfeed due to embarrassment and roles as a daughter-in-law contribute to breastfeeding discontinuation among some South Asian cultures (Choudhry & Wallace, 2012, p. 72-87; Schmied et al., 2012, p. 1-15; Twamley, Puthussery, Harding, Baron, & Macfarlane, 2011, p. 595-602). Furthermore, the benefits of colostrum are contradictory among Asian cultures; Thai culture believes that colostrum gives immunity while Pakistani and Indian culture discards it due to the belief of colostrum rancidity (Schmied et al., 2012, p. 1-15). Moreover, Hirani and Premji (2009) states that feeding the infant boiled honey and water instead of colostrum are prevalent among Pakistanis (p. 18-24). Based on these findings, there is a need for education regarding colostrum benefits and the botulism risk present with honey introduction.

As the literature reveals, Asian cultural breastfeeding practices and beliefs are complex and varies from country of origin. A facilitator of breastfeeding within Asian cultures includes the understanding of breast milk benefits while barriers include greater emphasis on maternal health, the cultural norm of maintaining modesty, and colostrum misconceptions. Furthermore, there is a need for education regarding the consequences of introducing honey to infants and risk of developing botulism. Additionally, a balance between promoting maternal health needs and breastfeeding benefits to both mother and infant needs to be emphasized.

African

According to Renzaho and Oldroyd (2013), African women were given maize porridge and beer derived from sorghum to promote lactation (p. 1-12). This finding supports Steinman et al. (2010) who states that Somali mothers are encouraged to drink a lot of fluids such as, tea with milk and goat soup to promote production of breast milk (p. 67-88). The researchers revealed that Somali mothers tend to breastfeed for a year and find breastfeeding soothing to the infant, preventing nighttime sleep disturbance (p. 67-88). Literature findings pertaining to Somali beliefs about colostrum are mixed but the majority share a strong opposition regarding breastfeeding if it has stayed in the breast for hours. Furthermore, supplementation is also encouraged and practiced especially when there is a perceived milk insufficiency. A cause of concern is a Somalian practice of administering honey into the infant’s lips and gums amidst risk of botulism in which majority was unaware of (Steinman et al., 2010, p. 67-88).

Infant grandmothers in Malawi are influential breastfeeding and food introduction decision makers. Common foods introduced to infants under six months includes: “mzuwula (root infusion), water, dawale (herbal infusion), and porridge”. “Mzuwula” is given to prevent infants against “moto” which is an illness identified only by the grandmothers and elders within the village. Supplementation is introduced to infants due to the grandmother’s perceived maternal milk insufficiency. Furthermore, a prevalent Malawi belief is when an infant cries after childbirth, the infant is believed to have a stomachache and is given “dawale” and porridge (Kerr, Dakishoni, Shumba, Msachi, & Chirwa, 2008, p. 1095-1105).

African cultural practices raise alarming concerns particularly the early introduction of supplementation such as a root extract and porridge which could have negative effects on infant health. Cultural beliefs regarding these supplementations needs to be further explored and if possible an alternative could be promoted without risking harm to the infant. Additionally, education regarding the consequences of these supplementations on infant health outcomes needs to be emphasized in a culturally sensitive manner. On the contrary, the prevalent African cultural postpartum maternal care of administering fluids should be noted as a positive behaviour that promotes lactation and should be encouraged. In addition, familial influence, particularly infant grandmothers, is prevalent and should therefore be included in breastfeeding teaching.

GAPS IN RESEARCH

            The author identified the following as gaps in research: lack of Canadian literature focused on cultural impacts of breastfeeding, lack of literature regarding East Indian, Filipino, and other African nationalities in relation to breastfeeding behaviours, and lack of an intervention-focused literature regarding breastfeeding within the context of culture.

RECOMMENDATIONS

            The author recommends the following practices to address cultural diversity in terms of breastfeeding as follows: provision of culturally competent health care with a focus on increasing cultural awareness; inclusion of family members, particularly the husband and mother-in-law during post-partum care; implementation of a shared maternal and infant health emphasis; provision of the benefits of colostrum during teaching; and teaching breastfeeding information through the use of interpreters, pictograms, and pamphlets in various languages.

CONCLUSION

            This mini literature review revealed that maternal culture has a multifaceted effect on breastfeeding decisions and outcomes. It identified some cultural facilitators and barriers on breastfeeding decisions and outcomes. Findings were categorized according to ethnic identification—Middle-Eastern, Asian, and African. Middle-Eastern culture revealed a practice of an extended breastfeeding duration however supplementation is also common due to communal household dynamics and difficulty in balancing household tasks with infant care. Some Asian cultures practiced a maternal emphasis on postpartum care. Furthermore, colostrum understanding was contradictory for both Asian and African cultures. Amidst the promising breastfeeding support prevalent in African cultures, there are concerning health hazards that were noted particularly early supplementation of herbal concoctions that could pose a health risk to the infant. In conclusion, this study identified several gaps in the literature including a lack of Canadian literature focused on breastfeeding outcomes within a cultural perspective as well as in depth exploration of breastfeeding practices in other nationalities. The author recommended the utilization of this paper as a starting point towards implementation of culturally competent care through cultural breastfeeding norms awareness and inclusion of extended family members as integral part of the breastfeeding journey. Additionally, in depth research regarding the implications of often contradictory breastfeeding knowledge and practices should be further explored in order to find a balance between respecting cultural background with ideal maternal and infant health outcomes.

REFERENCES

  • Chen, W. (2010). Understanding the cultural context of Chinese mothers’ perceptions of breastfeeding and infant health in Canada. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 19, 1021-1029. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2702.2009.02956.x
  • Choudhry, K. & Wallace, L. M. (2012). ‘Breast is not always best’: South Asian women’s experiences of infant feeding in the UK within an acculturation framework. Maternal and Child Nutrition, 8, 72-87. doi: 10.1111/j.1740-8709.2010.00253.x
  • Demirtas, B., Ergocmen, B., & Taskin, L. (2011). Breastfeeding experiences of Turkish women. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 21, 1109-1118. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2702.2011.03848.x
  • Hirani, S. A. & Premji, S. S. (2009). Mothers’ employment and breastfeeding continuation: Global and Pakistani perspectives from the literature. Neonatal, Paediatric, and Child Health Nursing, 12(2), 18-24.
  • Jessri, M., Farmer, A., & Olson, K. (2013). Exploring Middle-Eastern mothers’ perceptions and experiences of breastfeeding in Canada: An ethnographic study. Maternal and Child Nutrition, 9, 41-56. doi: 10.1111/j.1740-8709.2012.00436.x
  • Kerr, R., Dakishoni, L., Shumba, L., Msachi, R., & Chirwa, M. (2008). “We grandmothers know plenty”: Breastfeeding, complementary feeding and multifaceted role of grandmothers in Malawi. Social Science & Medicine, 66, 1095-1105. doi: 10.1016/j.socscimed,2007.11.019
  • Kramer, M., Aboud, F., Mironova, E., Vanilovich, I., Platt, R., Matush, L., … Shapiro, S. (2008). Breastfeeding and child cognitive development: new evidence from a large randomized trial. Archives of General Psychiatry, 65(5), 578-584.
  • Premani, Z., Kurji, Z., & Mithani, Y. (2011). To explore the experiences of women on reasons in initiating and maintaining breastfeeding in urban area of Karachi, Pakistan: An exploratory study. International Scholarly Research Network Pediatrics, 1-10. doi: 10.5402/2011/514323
  • Renzaho, A. M. & Oldroyd, J. C. (2013). Closing the gap in maternal and child health: A qualitative study examining health needs of migrant mothers in Dandenong, Victoria, Australia. Maternal and Child Health Journal, 1-12. doi: 10.1007/s10995-013-1378-7
  • Schmied, V., Olley, H., Burns, E., Duff, M., Dennis, C., & Dahlen, H. (2012). Contraindications and conflict: A meta-ethnographic study of migrant women’s experiences of breastfeeding in a new country. BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, 12(163), 1-15. doi: 10.1186/1471-2393-12-163
  • Steinman, L., Doescher, M., Keppel, G., Pak-Gorstein, S., Graham, E., Haq, A., Johnson, D., & Spicer, P. (2010). Understanding infant feeding beliefs, practices, and preferred nutrition education and health provider approaches: An exploratory study with Somali mothers in the USA. Maternal and Child Nutrition, 6, 67-88. doi: 10.1111/j.1740-8709.2009.00185.x
  • Thomas, E. C., Williams, T. M., & Hartmann, P. E. (2010). Lactation and mother’s milk: Recent advances in understanding. Infants, 6(3), 86-90.
  • Twamley, K., Puthussery, S., Harding, S., Baron, M., & Macfarlane, A. (2011). UK-born ethnic minority women and their experiences of feeding their newborn infant. Midwifery, 27(5), 595-602.
  • Venes, D. (2005). Taber’s cyclopedic medical dictionary (21st ed.). Philadelphia, USA: F. A. Davis Company.
Baby Products, shoes

Geox shoes

My search for comfortable shoes is ongoing especially since my baby’s feet is constantly outgrowing the shoes he currently have! Shoes are so expensive yet toddlers are outgrowing it left and right. Since my son’s current shoes is almost too tight, we decided to try and search for new shoes to buy again! Just like any parents or caregivers, this kind of endeavor takes days if not even weeks to accomplish. Things get in the way of a shopping trip or we fail to find THE perfect shoe with reasonable price. Just like typical #kurdidad fashion, he just randomly announced that we will be going to the mall. He does this kind of surprises and unplanned trips ever since I met him and I AM STILL NOT USED TO IT! It drives me crazy all the time. You see, I like to PLAN things. I HATE when I am not properly prepared for all the “what ifs” that might happen during that trip. I hate last minute plans. It just gives me anxiety and gives me a bad mood. HATE IT, HATE IT! Yet, my husband still LOVES SURPRISES. He still does not understand why I NEED to be told days before of this impending trip. Even though during the times that I am not prepared because of his surprises, we would then need a particular baby item which he would ask why I did not bring it! Like hello, whose fault was it? Anyway, I digress. So here I was scrambling to at least try to bring things that we might need during this trip. I am already in a bad mood so he gets the silent treatment. Once we reached the mall, we looked at different children stores yet failed to find the shoes that we both like. Until we happen to pass by this new store in the mall. Out of curiosity, we decided to give their products a look. OMG! I have never been so in love with toddler shoes so much until I saw and felt these shoes! These shoes is made of ITALIAN LEATHER and are so fashionable yet so comfy!  Geox shoes are so breathable and has an inner lining that can be taken out for ease of measurements as well as for cleaning purposes. We all know that all kinds of things fall in the abyss of toddler shoes, right? Even I still experience having a random small rock fall in my own shoes, how much more my toddler’s shoes? The shoes are antibacterial which is a huge plus since we all know that toddlers can be so gross at times. I love that these shoes are made of 2 velcro flaps which makes it contour and fit toddler’s feet. We even bought this shoes in a size or 2 bigger yet my son can still walk comfortably without the shoes flying away. The sole of the shoe  are also nonskid which prevents toddlers from slipping since they are still trying to control their balance. I love these shoes amidst it being quite expensive but I could totally see myself as being another loyal goex shoes customer. We did get it on sale though so it did not hurt my husband’s pockets that much.

What do you think of this beauty? Have you tried Goex shoes before? What other pet-peeves do you have? Are you a planner like me or a spur-of-the-moment person like my husband?
Baby Products, Playtex

Playtex sipsters stage 3

Playtex stage 3 insulated sipsters are so durable and of good quality. We have been using these sippy cups for months now and they are still functioning quite well. My son loves using these sippy cups and he even mastered how to close or open the lids and even throw the whole thing! Amidst some bruises, this poor sippy cup is still going strong. I do like that it can be taken apart in order to be cleaned properly. Furthermore, this particular sippy cup is insulated so it keeps liquids cold for quite a while.

They do dry quickly but you just have to make sure to separate the bottle from the lid and straw in order for the straw to dry properly. These sippy cups are affordable and can held by a toddler quite easily. Even though my son sometimes bites the straw, it is still functioning and does not seem like it needs replacing yet. Furthermore, I love that it has a lid cover since it helps prevents leaks or even covers the straw whenever my son thinks it is funny to throw his sippy cup.

Jujube, Jujube Accessories

JuJuBe Messenger Strap

Have you ever felt the despair when you first received your JuJuBe messenger strap and it cannot be adjusted? That instant feeling of panic? Well, I did experience just that. I had to mentally tell myself that this is fixable. UNTIL! I realized that the metallic adjuster of the messenger strap can be taken out! YES, YOU HEARD THAT RIGHT! It can be REMOVED! How amazing is that? Well for me, it is just a genius idea. I then had to carefully analyze how to do it without risking ruining my new messenger strap.

HOW TO DETACH AND RE-ATTACH THE STRAP ADJUSTER: 

1) I started by carefully folding the outer sides of the straps in order to reveal the hidden opened ends of the rectangular strap adjuster.

 

photo 2 (2).JPG

 

Here is another angle wherein you can see that I sort of pushed the ends of the strap inwards and then reinserted it to the strap adjuster.

photo 3 (2)2) You would then do the same on the other end. Here is a pic of both sides being folded in order to be able to remove the strap adjuster from being attached to the strap.

 

photo 4 (2)3) Then just slide the strap adjuster until fully out of the strap. Here is what the strap adjuster looks like. I have not encountered strap adjusters not being connected on all ends. This design is absolutely genius and I love that it can be done. No more having to worry about exchanging a messenger strap and waiting for days for the a new strap to arrive. As you can see in the picture below, my strap adjuster was located on the other end of the strap hence it can only go to a certain length due to the strap pads blocking its way.

 

photo 1 (3).JPG4) Since my hook ring was on the other side of the strap. I had to feed the rest of the strap through the strap pad. Once you looped the strap out of the strap pad, you can then remove the hook ring as shown below.

 

photo 2 (3).JPG5) You would then insert the strap adjuster first then the hook ring as shown below.

photo 3 (3).JPG6) Next, you would fold the strap backwards and then connect both open ends of the strap adjuster in the open part of the strap just like how you took it out (refer to #1 and 2) as shown below.

 

photo 4 (3).JPG

End result would look like this! Hopefully, I was able to help you during your times of frustration and confusion if ever you encounter this kind of dilemma.

photo 5 (3).JPG

Baby Products

Live Clean Baby Tearless Shampoo and Wash

I LOVE THIS PRODUCT. It is amazing plus it can be used both as a body wash as well as shampoo! 2 for the price of 1! It is also mostly plant-based, paraben free, and phthalate free!!! It is quite affordable and the container is huge which can last for quite a while. I also love the container which makes it very easy to use especially when bathing or showering a squirming toddler! It smells amazing as well.

 

The contents is clear liquid so you can be assured that there is no colouring added to it. I am also very happy that they list the ingredients that are plant derived which is quite important for me when buying products for my baby. I do wish there is no parfum and glycerin added though. But since it is affordable, tearless, and easily obtainable where I live, I am happy with this product.

Lenny Lamb

Lenny Lamb Holiday Cruise Sackpack

 

One of my current must haves are Lenny Lamb sackpacks. I am able to satisfy my want to own the many picturesque Lenny Lamb prints by buying the affordable and useful sackpacks. I have chosen this particular print since I have always love anything sea-related materials or prints. Seeing the vibrant blue colour with sailboats design is so nostalgic and refreshing to stare at. Sackpacks are so versatile, very useful, and can fit a lot! I can fit my Lillebaby brilliance embossed with no problem at all. I can even fit a diaper, wipes, and a change of baby clothes in there too. PLUS it is quite affordable for the quality of fabric that it is made of.

This particular sackpack feels soft and does not easily snag. It also feels a bit more lightweight than the other sackpack that I have. I have not noticed any tendency to get dirty easily yet. I like that it can be worn like a backpack quite comfortably though I did have to pull both string ends equally to avoid unequal distribution of the string since one end of the string is connected to the fabric. Furthermore, I also like the inner lining which is white which does provide a beautiful contrast from the front print though it does have a higher risk of getting dirty easily. Again, I would have wished it is either double layered or has an inner pul fabric. But as it is, it is quite beautiful and wonderful.

Lenny Lamb

Lenny Lamb Rainbow Symphony Sackpack

The Lenny Lamb Rainbow Symphony Sackpack is like a dream. I grew up living in a household full of musical instruments and a grandfather that is a music teacher. Music was a huge part of my life growing up. Seeing this newly released sackpack brought back memories of my childhood which were bittersweet. I remembered playing various musical instruments and even participating in a musical event as a child. Unfortunately, I was not able to develop my skills. I would have loved to learn how to play the piano though. Due to my attachment to music, it is quite obvious that I needed to have this Lenny Lamb print. I decided on getting a sackpack to use it to store my carrier and other bits and ends that I tend to carry when going outside. This sackpack is made of woven material just like all the Lenny Lamb carriers and blankets. The colour is very vibrant and amidst being woven, it does not easily snag. My sackpack has no snags at all amidst being used constantly ever since I got this a few months ago. It is also comfy and can be worn as a backpack which was my intended purpose for it. It can fit quite a lot of things from clothes, snacks, water bottles, my wet bags, and much more!

This is the interior portion of the sackpack. It is still so beautiful and the material is quite thick which makes it sturdy. If I were to change something, I would have liked for this sackpack to be double layered or layered with pul fabric (ones used for wet bags) to make it more awesome. As it is, it is still amazing and I am quite happy with it. A must have for sure!

Tula

Tula Love Soleil Blanket

 

I have always wondered why a lot of people are raving about the tula blankets. I was confused and did not get how a blanket can be expensive. UNTIL I GOT ONE! Tula blankets is so luxurious, soft, huge, and amazing! This fluffy goodness is totally worth the money if only on the basis that is made of bamboo! You can see the size difference of the tula in comparison to the summer infant muslin blanket. As you can tell, the Tula blanket is larger and it is softer as well. It comes with a bag that is quite handy for storage or when bringing this blanket outside. Since it is made of bamboo, it does require gentle care and preferably hang dried.

I sometimes use this blanket as my nursing cover. And since it is quite huge, it totally covers both myself and my son. It is breathable since it is thin. It does snag easily though so it needs to be cared of. Furthermore, it is a bit pricey as well and I do not like that this blanket does not have the silk tag. AMIDST all of those things, if I got the money, I would TOTALLY splurge on this blanket since it is so cuddly! My son loves wrapping himself with this blanket and it totally covers him from head to foot! Additionally, due to its size, you would need to wrap the baby more than usual if compared to normal swaddle blankets. I did not get this when my son was a newborn so I could not comment on its ease of use. I did use the summer infant pictured above and it was the perfect size.