Problem Solving

I love elegant solutions.

This past week, I threw myself into solving the problems I’ll encounter going back to work, and I’m really satisfied with my pumping solution.

We’re moving, and instead of a 30 minute walk/bus ride, I’ll have an hour bus ride to and from work. I must schlep briefcase, purse, lunch, breastmilk cooler, and pump, which is an awful amount of stuff to schlep.  Oh, and I’m on a budget, I need to do this as cheaply as possible.

So, for pumping at work, I needed a pump, something to pump into, and transportation solutions for both. I bought the Lansinoh double electric because it was the cheapest good pump. Bonus, it didn’t come with a huge ugly tote to schlep. Malus, I needed something to carry all the fiddly bits in.

On impulse, I picked up this train case from the Container Store.  I wasn’t sure the pump body even would fit, but everything fits as if it was made for it!  The tubing goes in the zippered mesh compartment of the lid, where it can’t be damaged, the pump base and adapter go in the bottom of the main compartment with the flanges and two collection bottles on top.  The diaphragms and valves go in the zippered flap pocket and sit on top of the pump and flanges so they won’t be damaged.  There’s a gusseted inner pocket where I can keep a soft towel for drying off the parts.  I can even keep a Sharpie for dating storage bottles in one of the brush pockets.

I picked up a small cooler for ten bucks from Babies R Us.  My hands-free solution was free.  I already had storage bottles.  My total cost was approximately $180, fifty smackers less than the cheapest equivalent setup, and with a smaller footprint.  I’ve done a few test runs and am extremely smug about it.

But I find that all the elegant solutions in the world don’t make me feel a whit better about leaving my baby.  I wish I could take him with me.  But even if such practice was acceptable and permitted, I couldn’t.  I spend too much time in the lab.

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