All very good posts here.
I bf dd until she child led weaned at 30 mos or so. In the beginning I pumped if a feeding was missed- she slept for a while and I was engorged etc. So I stockpiled for a while and kept it in the freezer. Also she would sometimes miss a feeding around 5 am so I would just pump then as well. dd had maybe 1-3 bottles a week usually given by her grandparents or my dh if I was gone for some reason. I also used it down the road around when she was 6 mos old for rice cereal etc.
It does make a great cure all. I remember her have a rash on her face when she was around 8 weeks old. Another mom suggested rubbing breast milk on it a few times and presto like magic it was gone in a day or so! It also helps an earache for baby and anyone else. I pumped for the first 12 mos and then stopped and she would have whole milk and nursed from me when wanting to there after.
there is a fantastic article in the New beginnings- the publishing that LLL puts out for its members this issue. "10 tips for feeding for a year". I strongly encourage any new mamas esp to start attending meetings asap. They should have a copy of the article on hand to show you (we used it at the meeting yesterday for the discussion) If not, I would be more than happy to Xerox this and mail it to anyone who wants it- pm me!
Its true you can see other mamas there nursing and see/hear some difficulties they overcame or are there for to let you see that this could happen. There is also plenty of mamas who have a great nursing relationship going and they attend for the support. If I did not have this group, I NEVER would have done what I did- successful nursing for 30 months. Even if you only plan to nurse a shorter period, they can really be a fountain of wonderful knowledge.
to find a chapter:http://www.lalecheleague.org/
I also recommend becoming a member since you will get the magazine in the mail and you will be supporting one of the best groups around.
Also- check out the breastfeeding section here on MDC