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Are Childbirth Classes Necessary?

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We are surrounded by information! Between Google, Pinterest, blogs, and other social media, it seems you have all the information you need to know about having a baby right there at your fingertips.


Maybe your friend, who had an unmedicated birth last year, has a ton of books you can borrow, and she can give you the scoop on what giving birth feels like.  Maybe you are planning to get an epidural as soon as you feel contractions, and you figure the nurses will tell you what you need to know. Besides, you and your partner are both pretty busy. How are you going to find time to squeeze in a class?
Is it really necessary to take a childbirth class?
Well, no, it's not necessary--you are going to give birth whether you take a class or not! But there are advantages to preparing yourself before you give birth..
The most important reason to take a class with a live instructor is to prepare yourself for the realities of today's healthcare system. The vast majority of Labor & Delive…

Have You Met NORA?

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If not, let me introduce you!

 NORA is an infusion we recommend to our pregnant clients, made from a blend of nettle leaf, oatstraw, red raspberry leaf, and alfalfa. This delicious infusion will help keep you hydrated, nourished, and may help with some of common minor discomforts of pregnancy. We recommend drinking a quart daily, beginning in the second trimester of pregnancy and continuing while you are breastfeeding.

 Stinging Nettle Leaf (Urtica dioica) is one of the most nutritious plants, containing calcium, potassium, protein, beta carotene, trace minerals, iron, and vitamins A, C, D, and K. It is used as a blood builder to treat anemia and promote circulation, to increase milk supply, and decrease menstrual bleeding or bleeding after childbirth.

Oatstraw (Avena sativa) is one of my favorite herbs. Not only is it very nourishing, it is calming and mood-stabilizing. Prepared as an infusion, it provides protein, is high in B vitamins (except B12), calcium, magnesium, and contain…

What If You're Not Happy To Be Pregnant?

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I have a little tradition on New Year’s Day of reflecting back over the previous years, as I plan for the year ahead. I browse our photos and scrapbooks, and I read through my Facebook memories.

I noticed that that on this day in 2013, my midwife was visiting our home for a postpartum visit, newborn screen, and signing the birth certificate for our seventh baby. (The Baby turned five years old a couple days ago!) There were many joyful posts and pictures of the new baby.

Reading through all the joyful posts about the baby’s birth, I still remember...
nine months prior to that...
sitting alone in my bedroom with the door locked, watching that positive line grow darker on the pregnancy test. I couldn’t breathe.

Honestly, I had a meltdown.

I had suffered postpartum depression with my previous two pregnancies, panic attacks with the last one, the baby had just turned a year old, and I was just beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
I didn’t see how I could possibly go throu…

Don't Throw Out Your Turkey Bones

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Right now the media is full of recipes for leftover turkey. What all can you do with leftover turkey? It’s endless! You can find recipes for turkey enchiladas, turkey quesadillas, turkey chili verde, turkey stir-fry, turkey soups, turkey casseroles, turkey tetrazzini, turkey spaghetti, turkey...

But I want to give a shout out to the bones. Don’t throw out the turkey bones! They can make a very nourishing broth to be used for illnesses or recipes that call for broth.

After you’ve pulled all the meat off the turkey, put the bones in a large stock pot. I add an onion or two, a bulb of garlic, peppers, celery, herbs like rosemary or thyme...whatever I have on hand. Add 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar to help draw the minerals out of the bones. Fill the pot with water, covering the bones. Simmer all day. After it has cooled, strain the liquid into containers, and store them in the freezer.
Whenever I need a recipe that calls for broth, or when someone in my family becomes ill, I pull this b…

Your Due Date May Be Like the First Day of Fall

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Many of my friends have been anticipating the first day of fall for weeks now. My Facebook newsfeed has been overtaken by pumpkin spice memes, pumpkins, hoodies, football, bonfires, boots...and TODAY is the long-awaited first day of fall!

 Except nothing resembling "fall" is happening outside. It's 94 degrees out. I'm even going to skip the football game this evening; I'm afraid I'll melt. (Go, Yellowjackets!)

Everybody who's been in Arkansas for any length of time knows to not expect Fall at the end of September. We already know it's going to be awhile longer before we start feeling fall temperatures. Even though we know that, it's still a little of a bummer when the first day of fall gets here...and it's still summer.

It reminds me of the end of my pregnancies. After my second pregnancy, I had come to expect that I would go past my "due date," and by a lot. Not days, but weeks. I was already in the habit of giving a "due mont…

National Day of Encouragement

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Whatever comes your way today...you can do it. You will get through it. You have what it takes. Just breathe.

Is Water Birth a Safe Option?

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Image courtesy of Catherine Anne Photography
One of our frequently asked questions is, "Do you do water births?"
The answer is yes, we do! Laboring and/or birthing in the water is a popular option among our home birth clients.  We have two birth pools, which we loan out at no charge (there is a $30 charge for the disposable liner.) We will give you instructions on setting it up, how to fill it, when to fill it, how to drain it, and anything else you need to know.

The above photo is one of our tubs in use. The water is approximately chest deep and covers your belly when full. (That's me in the photo. I loved my waterbirths!)

Another question we are frequently asked is, "What do you think about waterbirth? Is it safe?"

The short answer is yes, we believe waterbirth is safe, based on our experience, along with the current literature. We have seen that immersing in a tub of warm water benefits laboring mothers by helping them relax, helping them to get into comf…