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Sweet Pea Births

Chandler, Arizona

Sweet Pea Births

...celebrating every swee​t pea their birth

Blog

Meet the Doula: Kelly Sunshine

Posted on August 8, 2016 at 5:49 PM Comments comments (0)
This month's featured doula is Kelly Sunshine, of Sunshine Doula Services.  We have had the pleasure of being vendors together at several different local birth events. It is our pleasure to introduce you to her this month in our Meet The Doula feature.

 
When was the first time you heard the word, “doula”?
I don’t remember the first time I actually heard the word, however, as my sister-in-laws and friends were having kids I would always go be with them while they were in labor and help them. I had already had a few of my kids so they thought I would be helpful. I was essentially being a doula without realizing it. Then one day a little over 5 years ago, I meet a gal who was a doula and the dots all connected for me. I remember thinking how I wish I would have had a doula with me at my 4 births.
 
How did you decide that becoming a doula was part of your journey?
I’ve had a passion for labor and delivery for years. I contemplated getting my nursing degree at one point. But the more I thought about it I realized I really enjoy helping moms through the entire birth process and building relationships. I had heard about doulaing before. Then about 5 years ago I met a gal who had been a doula for a few years and I learned a lot more about the profession. At that moment I knew that was exactly what my heart had been wanting to do. My husband, who saw my enthusiasm, strongly encouraged me to “do it”. Before I even had a chance to make a decision, he had already enrolled me in a doula certification training that was happening in Phoenix 2 weeks later. I’ve never looked back since then.
 
Are you a birth and/or a postpartum doula?
Birth.
 
How long have you been a doula?
I have been a doula for almost 5 years. I am DONA Certified. I have been fortunate to have a very active career and have been blessed to work with over 350 families since I started.
 
What do you enjoy the most about being a doula?
So many moms have a vision of what an ideal birth would be like. I like to help them develop the confidence to trust in their bodies and themselves. There is nothing more rewarding than to support a mama and for her to realize how strong and awesome she really is. I also truly love the relationships I form with the couples.
 
What is your philosophy when you go to a birth space?
Empowering moms with the philosophy of, “its their agenda not mine”; and using my skills to create an optimalenvironment that they envisioned. Also helping them stay on course with their plan even when they don’t think they can do it anymore.
 
How do you work with and involve the birth partner?
This is very important to me. I am not there to take their place but to work together to help support the mom.  I adjust my involvement based on how comfortable their coach is and how involved the coach wants to be. If I see they are feeling uncomfortable or nervous I show them things they can do to support the mom. Once they get a little confidence then they step up and want to do more. It really cool to watch.
 
What is the toughest situation you have ever dealt with?  How did you handle it?
Believe it or not the mamas are pretty easy to deal with. By the time we get to a birth we’ve made a pretty strong connection and I generally know what they need. As soon as you bring the extended families in, not the daddy’s or partners, it can sometimes get challenging. My most notable situation was with very vocal and disruptive family members in the room. They were creating a lot of tension and drama and I could see it was upsetting the mom. In fact, despite her requesting them to leave the room they simply weren’t respecting her.
 
I stepped in and with kind firmness asked them to step outside into the waiting area. I explained that I wanted to take some time to help the her get more comfortable and focused. They understood and spent the rest of the birth in the waiting area. 
 
What keeps you working as a doula?
I suppose the best way I can describe it is that being a doula is in my blood. I just love it. It’s challenging work. It keeps me on my toes. Every birth has its own unique dynamic. And I guess I am pretty good at it. Perhaps it’s my gifting and a way of serving the world.
 
What does your fee cover – how many visits or hours?  Is there a different charge for a shorter labor or longer labor?
My fee covers a prenatal visit which generally last an hour to 90 minutes. It also includes unlimited pre-birth support by phone, email and text leading up to labor. Obviously I am with the family from the beginning of active labor through approximately a couple hours after birth to help the mom and baby get comfortable, and establish nursing if that is their desire.
 
I also take photos of the entire labor, birth and after.  I provide the family with the edited digital copies, as well as a printed 4x6 set. I also write the family a birth story and then meet them for a postpartum visit as well. My fee is the same regardless of the length of the labor.
 
Do you offer any other services to your clients?
Yes. I do placenta encapsulation and have processed over 650 placentas. I also have some other pre- and post-birth products that are designed to help moms prepare for labor and heal following the birth.
 
Just for fun, what do you do when you are not doula-ing?
Well being a doula occupies a good portion of my life. When I am not doulaing, I love to travel with my husband and do family vacations with our four kids. We entertain at our home frequently with family and friends, which I love to do!


 
Would you like to Connect with our featured doula?  Here is her contact information:
Kelly Sunshine
602-410-5968
 
Find Kelly on social media HERE and on Instagram HERE


Disclaimer:
The material included in this blog is for informational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog and related videos contain information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained in this video and on our blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.
 
  Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: convenient to Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, Payson


 

 

Inside Look: Babymoon Inn

Posted on August 2, 2016 at 7:31 AM Comments comments (0)
It is our pleasure to introduce you to the Babymoon Inn, one of the Phoenix area local birth centers. We have enjoyed getting to know the director, Julia Hall, through her support of The Bradley Method® events, as well as other local events where we have been vendors together.  We have had students from our classes birth there, as well as receive postpartum support through Babymoon’s various breastfeeding and family support meetings offered throughout the week. The support meetings are open to all families in the community, regardless of whether or not they birthed at Babymoon Inn.  We are so grateful to Julia’s commitment to create a community that supports and enriches a family through pregnancy, birth, and into the childbearing year.
 
FYI: As of Spring 2016, one of our Bradley Method® colleagues is offering the Bradley™ 12-week childbirth preparation series at Babymoon Inn. 
 
I hope you enjoy this month’s exclusive INSIDE LOOK at the Babymoon Inn.  I want to offer huge thanks to Julia for taking the time to give our readers a peek into the beautiful birth center located in Central Phoenix.
 
LOGO: Babymoon Inn - all rights reserved by Babymoon Inn, Phoenix, ArizonaTell me about the Babymoon Inn.
 Babymoon Inn is a freestanding accredited birth center and full-scope midwifery practice, offering GYN and well-woman care in addition to prenatal care.  Families who come to us can choose to birth in our birth center or at the hospital with a Babymoon Inn midwife.  We also offer doula services, prenatal massage, in-house chiropractic care, and an original Lamaze childbirth preparation series.
 
Who are the care providers at Babymoon Inn?
 Babymoon’s care providers are certified nurse-midwives.
 
What kind of families does Babymoon Inn serve?
 Babymoon welcomes ALL families.  We serve families from all areas and all backgrounds and all walks of life.  The common element among all of our families is that they are well-researched, they are informed about their choices, and they want to be active participants in their care.  
 
What range of services does Babymoon Inn provide for the childbearing year and beyond? Is there anything you do not provide for?
 Babymoon believes in holistic, patient-centered care and we aim to provide all of these services from the comfort of our office.  We offer prenatal care with extended appointment times, chiropractic care, prenatal massage, doula support, Lamaze childbirth preparation classes, an orientation group led by our registered dietitian, and two group prenatal appointments.  After baby arrives, we offer three weekly support groups for babies of various ages, lactation support, a postpartum group appointment complete with newborn photos, and two appointments with a midwife.  We screen for postpartum depression twice within the first six weeks after birth and continue to follow up with our mamas through our weekly Inn Mommies support group.  We offer a wide variety of community-building activities, such as weekly music classes, clothing swaps, crafting events for both moms and children, a monthly lecture series, and our famous annual cookie exchange every December!
 
What makes Babymoon Inn unique?
 We are a team of healthcare consumers AND healthcare providers who are committed to listening to feedback from our clients to give the most well-rounded, patient-centered experience.  We’ve grown our practice to offer a wide range of services based on what our families have requested, and we strive to meet each client wherever she is in her journey.
 
What motivated you to start Babymoon Inn?
 My passion was ignited by my own experience as a mother receiving traditional obstetrical care in the medical model and then the stark contrast to the midwifery model of care, where I was an active participant in the process.  Based on my own experiences and how I felt under each model of care, it became my life’s goal to make sure every woman who walks through our doors has a voice and leaves feeling empowered and supported.  She will know her voice matters. 
 
Is there anything else our readers should know about Babymoon Inn or the care providers?
 We don’t believe in one kind of birth experience.  You can have your baby in the birth center, in the hospital, with an epidural, unmedicated, by yourself, or with your entire family present. We are not here to dictate your birth; we are here to facilitate it and be a partner in your care
 
What inspires you?
The families who allow us to be a part of their journey during such a beautiful and miraculous time of life inspire me every day. 

 
Would you like more information about a birth journey with Babymoon Inn? You can also see the calendar of events available to the Phoenix community by visiting their website.

Babymoon Inn
PHONE: 602.314.7755
 
Office
(appointments and tours)
202 E. Morris Drive
Phoenix, AZ 85012

The Nest
(classes and activities)
220 E. Lexington Ave.
Phoenix, AZ 85012

Disclaimer:
The material included in this blog is for informational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The viewer should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog and related videos contain information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained in this video and on our blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

Bradley Method® natural childbirth and Birthing From Within series offered in Arizona: convenient to Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, Payson
 



 

3 BIG Postpartum Secrets Exposed

Posted on May 13, 2016 at 11:10 AM Comments comments (0)
I wish someone had told me just how leaky postpartum was.  Now, I know we talk about this in the Bradley™ classes we teach because it was such a shock to me after the birth of our first Sweet Pea. 

Quite frankly, I don’t remember hearing about all the different ways things drip out of you after you birth your baby when we were Bradley™ students (and, twice!! Two teachers and no mention of this).  I wonder if you, like me, just think that postpartum is going to be sparkly and magical because the pregnancy is over and you are holding your baby.
 
Well, I'll admit, there is some magic - I don't want to be a complete Sour Susie.  Here is the Reality Check, though: along with the magical parts, postpartum is *really* drippy.  Think leaky faucets on steroids...

First of all, you are holding this beautiful, squishy baby that is too cute for words.  For me, every time I locked eyes with them, my heart melted. It made me cry every.single.time.  Add in the roller coaster of postpartum hormones and you might be crying at just about everything else, too.
 
You aren’t feeling in love with your baby?  That is okay.  You are still a good mom.  Keep reading. Especially the part at the end of this post.
 
Secondly, did anyone tell you that your breasts might look like shiny hard melons ready to pop? No, seriously…"hard, shiny, so taut you can bounce a quarter off of them" uncomfortable.  My husband could always tell when my milk came in.  Even if you are not going to breastfeed, you may want to have a strategy because the body will keep making milk until it gets the message that no one is emptying the breast.  Now, if you are going to breastfeed, rest assured that for most women, once the body figures out the supply and demand cycle, the engorgement goes away (check out THIS tip to help with engorgement).  While you will feel full-ish when your breasts produce milk between feedings, the bursting sensation eases off and you find a “new normal”, and probably some new nursing bras that are 1 to 2 sizes bigger than your pre-pregnancy size.
 
The third faucet that turns on and doesn’t turn off for a few weeks is the one connected to your uterus.  The joy you had about being excused from a monthly cycle for ten months comes raging back for typically 4-6 weeks postpartum.  I was so irritated that no one thought to mention this to me back when I was pregnant the first time.  Literally NO ONE told me that I was going to have a menstrual-like flow for six weeks.  Don’t you think that would be kind of important to mention to first time moms????
 
So here it is – laid out for you – the BIG secrets that should not *EVER* be secrets, because becoming a mother is a big enough adjustment to make without the leaky surprises.  Now, there are things you can do to mitigate all this leakage.  Here are some ideas for you in regards to those three secrets that I just busted open for you.  (For more of my postpartum tips, see the links listed at the end of the post)
 
Tears:
Get lots of rest.  Literally stay in bed for three days, skin-to-skin with your baby and let everyone else treat you like the Queen of Sheba.  If someone can’t handle seeing you (almost) naked, then they shouldn’t be coming over to visit.  After that, continue to sleep – our workbook says that you should take three 1-hour naps every day.  When you are rested, everything takes on a different meaning than when you are exhausted and sleep-deprived.  Keep taking naps until you are feeling more like “you” and less like this crazy person who showed up with the postpartum hormones.  You might also consider a postpartum doula to help with the basics so you can rest.
 
Breasts:
Get yourself some amazing nursing pads.  My favorites are the reusable pads that my friend Shannon makes (click HERE to see them).  You can also purchase some neat products from maternity and mommy stores.  HERE is my friend Talisha, owner of Modern Mommy Boutique, sharing some of the different products on the market that are designed to ease engorgement and pamper your hard-working breasts.
 
The Flow:
The best remedy I know of is to take your placenta pills.  WHAT? Did you just retch a little?  That’s okay – I did, too, the first time I heard someone talk about it.  Seriously, though, in my control group of four term pregnancies, the best recovery and the shortest lochia (fancy technical name for the bloody mess) was with Otter, because I had her placenta encapsulated.  I was done with the bleeding by four weeks postpartum, and the flow was significantly lower while it lasted.  A.Ma.Zing.  It was so nice not to feel like Carrie every time I moved.
 
Again, I have to recommend my friend Shannon – she also makes amazing postpartum pads.  You can see them HERE.  If you are going to be bleeding like crazy, then you might as well be as comfortable as possible.
 
Now, back to that item of,  “What if I am not feeling in love with my baby?”  Sometimes, things happen that have no bearing on you as a person or a mother.  It is a fact that some women will experience some degree of postpartum mood disorder.  It could be the blues that last for a couple of weeks, maybe you are experiencing depression, or maybe you are tumbling into postpartum psychosis.  You can answer THESE questions and talk to your care provider about the results.  Also at that page is a link to the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) – you can print, complete and take with you when you see your care provider.
 
Wherever you fall on the scale, help is out there and it is available.  Please do not hide in shame from your family and friends.  YOU ARE NOT ALONE.  YOU ARE STILL A GOOD PERSON.  You are a good person who is having an adjustment; still a good person nonetheless.  This having a baby and becoming a mother thing is an initiation…and we are just not prepared for it in our culture anymore.
 
Talk therapy is the least invasive and the least likely to affect your milk supply if you are breastfeeding.  Here are some resources if you are local to the Chandler, AZ area where we teach.  If you are not local, scroll down for some online resources and a link to support group listings in the USA and Canada.
 
Blossoming Moms Breastfeeding + Postpartum Support Group • Every Wednesday morning  • Time: 11:00 AM
Pregnant moms are welcome too!
Blossom Birth and Wellness Center
2928 N 16th Place, Phoenix, AZ 85016 
Facilitator: Michelle Hottya818-606-5687
 
Dignity Health Postpartum Adjustment Support Group Wednesdays • Time: 1:00 - 2:30 pm
For pregnant and new mothers who are experiencing depression and adjustment challenges, the number one complication of childbirth. Come learn coping mechanisms and how to ask for help in a safe and nonjudgmental environment.
Registration is not required. Childcare is provided during the group sessions for for babies and toddlers. You are welcome to bring your significant other or support person. Support group does not meet the week of July 4th, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s
Meeting Location:
Rome Towers: 1760 E Pecos Rd., Ste. 235, Gilbert, AZ 85295 

Postpartum Progress Group Therapy • Wednesdays • Time: 4:00 - 5:00 pm
Supporting moms from bump to breast & beyond. All meetings led by Dr. Cara English, MA, LAC, DBH. Group therapy may not be the best option for all moms. Dr. English will administer a brief phone assessment to determine if group therapy will be helpful for you, or if other types of treatment would be more beneficial.  The assessment will be scheduled prior to your first group. Cost: $30/session   Call (480) 442-8491 for more info.  AZ Breastfeeding Center, 4703 S. Lakeshore Dr, Tempe, 85282. 
 
Do you need support outside of the Phoenix, Arizona area?  

Check out these options, and remember, you do not have to suffer alone.  Reach out – I hope you will be overwhelmed by the compassion and acceptance of the women who have gone before you and are living testimonies to the fact that there is a “Climb Out Of The Darkness”.
 
Postpartum Progress – Online Support Forum
 
Postpartum Support – Resource list for USA and Canada
 
About ##PPD Chat on Twitter
 
BLOG
My Postpartum Voice


Is there something you discovered on your own about postpartum that you wish someone had told you?? What was that?
Please leave us a comment - it will be moderated and posted. 
 

MORE ABOUT POSTPARTUM ON SPB:

Postpartum Ideas to manage sleep, feeding, feelings about your birth, siblings, and pets

Postpartum Strategies - adjusting to life with a newborn

Postpartum Doulas - what they do and how to hire one

Postpartum Kit - essentials for a more pleasant postpartum experience

Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonDisclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.


Postpartum Kit

Posted on December 4, 2015 at 2:58 AM Comments comments (2)

Bradley Method(R) classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, Ahwatukee, Scottsdale, Payson
We said best wishes to another class...it's always hard to believe our group has been together for 12 weeks, and that the gatherings are over until reunion time.  

Here is a sneak peek into a part of our last class.  We share a visual of items our couples can consider keeping handy in the first few days after baby arrives:

Bradley Method(R) classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, Ahwatukee, Scottsdale, PaysonSleep Mask:  Sleep is the third key to making milk.  It's hard to know which one of these three is the most important.  Suffice it to say that sleep and supply have a direct relationship, the more you sleep, the better you are able to establish a milk supply; and the less you sleep, you are less likely to have an adequate milk supply.  The good news is that most women can increase their milk supply by getting more sleep.


Bradley Method(R) classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, Ahwatukee, Scottsdale, PaysonPeri-bottle:  These are used for rinsing the vaginal area in the first few weeks after a vaginal birth.  The area is stretched as you ease baby out, so you will be encouraged to rinse clean, instead of wiping, the vaginal area after using the restroom .




Bradley Method(R) classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, Ahwatukee, Scottsdale, PaysonPerineal Herbs:  Why these are not used in the hospital setting, I may never know.  Using this brew in the peri-bottle to rinse the vaginal area after using the restroom was amazing.  It was soothing, and the healing was so much faster!  You can also use the solution made by steeping the herbs for  a sitz bath - read more here about what is in the herb packet.  You can purchase this packet at www.everythingbirth.com, or Earth Mama, Angel Baby sells a package with six ready-to-go compresses.


Bradley Method(R) classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, Ahwatukee, Scottsdale, PaysonBradley Method(R) classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, Ahwatukee, Scottsdale, PaysonSitz Bath:  You can use an inflatable tube to sit on in the bathtub, or you can use a basin that has a pouch for warm water and a delivery tube in the toilet. You can use warm salt water or your perineal herb brew for faster healing with either of these options.



Bradley Method(R) classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, Ahwatukee, Scottsdale, PaysonPrenatal Vitamins Perineal Compresses - 3 different ways to make them Perineal Herbs Placenta PillsPerineal Compresses - 3 different options:  You can purchase a perineal compress, you can open the top end of a diaper and stuff the inside with ice (disposable filler absorbs most of the moisture so it doesn't leak), or you can fill hospital gloves or a condom with ice and tie them off.  All three can provide relief to a sore bottom area.



Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonWitch hazel & Cosmetic pads:  You can make your own hemorrhoid pads by using Witch Hazel and cosmetic pads.  You can make some ahead and put them in the refrigerator for a cool and relieving compress for the bottom area.  Another popular idea that incorporates witch hazel is to make "padsicles" - find a tutorial HERE.  I liked THESE pads by medline - soft and non-adhesive for the win.




Bradley Method(R) classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, Ahwatukee, Scottsdale, PaysonComfortable Nursing Bra:  A common piece of advice mamas hear is to buy a nursing bra one size larger than their regular size to accomodate their nursing breast size.  I would add that it's important to purchase a soft-structured bra for sleeping and for those early days of engorgement. These do not offer much support if you wear a larger cup size, so they aren't necessarily for every day use.  I sure do love them for sleeping though - much more comfortable than the supported ones I use during the day.


Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonBradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonNursing Pads:  You can use the washable kind, or the disposable kind - what ever works best for you and your lifestyle.  The key is to make sure the nipple area stays dry so that you minimize any possibility of moisture that can then lead to an infection. 



Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonCabbage Leaves: To help with engorgement - these can be  very effective milk supply minimizers, so use only as long as you need them.







Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonPrenatal Vitamins:  Our OB, and subsequently our midwives, suggested that we finish our bottle of pre-natal vitamins.  The ingredients are beneficial after the birth, and they continure to promote a healthy mom, healthy baby recovery.





Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, Payson
 Placenta Pills:  As I mentioned in last Friday's post, this was definitely the answer and & the solution to any signs of PPD for us.  This is one of the areas where you get what you pay for; I encourage  you to research your options and find a trustworthy and experienced placenta encapsulation specialist.


Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonPrunes:  When we were in the hospital, there was a laxative in our going-home bag.  Having worked so hard to keep our children away from harmful substances, we tend to look for a natural remedy that accomplishes the same thing.  These are a natural way to get your bowels moving after labor.  If mom doesn't like to eat prunes, you can drink prune juice, or hide them in other foods and still get the laxative effects of the prune.


Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonLove & Support!! We tell our coaches never to underestimate their importance, even when they may feel like they are outside the initial mom/baby bond.  Coaches bringing water and snacks, coaches changing the baby, coaches holding the baby so that mom can shower and nap, learning how to use the breast pump/accessories and take over some of the sterilizing; basically, coaches can step in and take over any and all chores so that mom can recover, and go for little walks for fresh air and sunshine :)  

What did you find helpful in the postpartum period?  Anything you would add to the postpartum kit?

Disclaimer:  
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®. 

Inside Look: Baby Boot Camp

Posted on July 31, 2015 at 10:22 AM Comments comments (0)
I had the pleasure of meeting Meredith Carder at the Baby Bonanza + Child Expo in May (photojournal HERE).  She took the time to answer our SPB interview questions so we could share her amazing program with you.

Photos by Kristen Carter Photography

SPB: What motivated you to get involved with Baby Boot Camp?
MC: As a mom of three I know how hard it is to make time for exercise when caring for a baby. Many gym daycares won’t take young babies. Those babies that are old enough sometimes don’t do well in that setting and mom is spending her entire workout worrying about her child. Having been there I wanted to make it easier for moms to make exercise a part of their lives. I also loved the idea of creating a social group where moms can make friends and build a support system,  all while making their health a priority.


SPB: How do you stay motivated to keep up an exercise program?
MC: Over the years I have learned that regular exercise is extremely important for not only my physical health but my mental health . Knowing I will always feel better and more focused after a workout keeps me going. When my motivation is low I connect with friends to keep me accountable.


SPB: Do you have a favorite class out of your fitness programs? Which one is it, and why?
MC: I love our StrollFit class. StrollFit combines cardio drills and strength exercises for a total body workout. There is a lot of variety in this class and we are constantly switching up the format to keep things fun for both mom and baby. We often play boot camp games as well as interacting with the little ones so that everyone leaves class with a smile on their face.


SPB: What sets Baby Boot Camp apart from other fitness programs?
MC: Baby Boot Camp is not just about working out. It is about creating a community. Moms from our classes frequently connect outside of class and we offer weekly play groups and monthly moms night out events. Our classes are also unique in that they are designed to address the unique physical challenges and issues pregnant women and postpartum moms face.


Want to learn more or enroll for a class? Always receive your first class FREE of charge. 

LOCAL: Meredith Carder
Franchise Owner/Instructor - Chandler and Gilbert, AZ ~ South
[email protected]
949-338-8605

Not local to AZ? Visit the website to find a class near you.
www.babybootcamp.com

Connect with us on social media!

Thank you, Meredith, for taking the time to answer our questions!  As you can see from the photos, classes are both indoors and outdoors.  Grab a friend, pack up your Sweet Peas and your strollers, and go have some fun!

Please leave us a comment - it will be moderated and posted. 
 

Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonDisclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.


Top 10 PostPartum Tips

Posted on May 22, 2015 at 7:12 PM Comments comments (0)
Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonDisclaimer:  
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

In Their Own Words: Essential Oils

Posted on May 8, 2015 at 12:38 PM Comments comments (0)
Happy Friday, friends!! I am excited to welcome Tina Lebedies as a guest blogger today.  She is a Bradley™  colleague and an essential oil enthusiast. 

We started using aromatherapy while I was pregnant with Otter.  After enjoying the benefits, I started exploring essential oils.  They have had a positive impact on our family.  I am happy to have Tina share her experience with them.

As with all things we offer on this blog, please treat it as a buffet - take what works for you and leave the rest.  If you have any questions about using essential oils, please reach out to Tina - her information is listed at the end of the post.  If she cannot answer your questions, she can refer you to a certified aromatherapist who can help you with the information you are seeking.

Tina has agreed to do a continuing series on using essential oils - look for future posts exploring more of the uses and benefits of specific oils for pregnancy. labor and postpartum.

How I got into essential oils 
Oil safety during pregnancy

Hello! My name is Tina Lebedies. I’m honored to be a guest blogger on Sweet Pea Births. I am a work at home mom and am so blessed and thankful to get to be at home with my three sweet kiddos. I am a  Bradley™ childbirth educator and an Ameo essential oil distributor. Since becoming a mom I have become passionate about living more green, eating healthier, breastfeeding, cloth diapering, pregnancy and birth, and essential oils. So basically, just living healthier!

Let’s talk about essential oils. Some people say they are a fad or just another marketing scheme. But, you know what? They have been around since Ancient times. The Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, and Chinese were the first to start using them. They are even talked about in the bible with the three wise men bringing Frankincense and Myrrh to the baby Jesus. Essential oils are not going to fade away. 

In fact, much of modern medicine is manufactured to replicate the active ingredients found naturally in essential oils.  For example, the main ingredient in Bengay is 15% methyl salicylate.  Wintergreen is 98% methyl salicylate! It is more effective, you use less product, and it comes from a plant rather than created synthetically in a lab. Thankfully people are starting to learn that nature is our best medicine.

In high school I often got headaches and had a hard time relaxing. I loved the smell of lavender so I started using lavender candles to help me relax. Sometimes they helped with my headaches. Then I discovered a “migrastick” at Trader Joes. It consisted of peppermint and lavender oils and it worked well for me - most of the time. We even had it packed in my hospital bag for the birth of my oldest son, who is now 8.

My mom used essential oils off and on but I thought it sounded silly so I honestly never paid much attention to them. She would put oils on the grandkids feet after their baths to help them sleep well. I thought it wouldn’t make a difference but they smelled great so I never minded them. They did help everyone sleep well though. Score!

Somewhere between all of this and through my journey of living more healthy I became very interested in essential oils while I was pregnant with my third child. I used them to help with pregnancy discomforts, aches, and pains. They helped me with headaches, sleeping, backaches, morning sickness, and managing my emotions.

I have now learned how to use them for almost everything. Since we have integrated them into our daily life my family gets sick less often, less severely, and we are healthier all around! How awesome is that?

I have also learned that quality is crucial. If it is not top quality it has the potential to not work or even to cause you harm. Remember when I said that sometimes the candles helped me relax and sometimes the migra stick worked? They were synthetic or poor quality oils. I had also used a tea tree that stung horribly! 

I was amazed at how a good quality tea tree did not do that at all. It is also a fallacy that 100% pure oils are guaranteed to be the best. I have recently learned that they need to be more than completely pure. They need to pass rigorous testing to assure that all of the oil’s constituents (chemical make-up) are at the proper levels to be safe and therapeutic. The testing also makes sure that impurities did not try to sneak in under the radar.

Before I say goodbye for today I would like to acknowledge the safety of essential oils in pregnancy. Of course it is controversial as so many things are these days. A couple experts are ultra-conservative and believe that essential oils should be avoided during the first trimester. However, no studies have shown that there are any ill side effects to the normal use of oils during pregnancy. 

To play it safe a pregnant mama could certainly enjoy the benefits of essential oils by always diluting her oils with a carrier oil, such as fractionated coconut oil or olive oil and not taking them internally.  In addition, avoid the following oils during pregnancy: basil, birch, wintergreen, and clary sage. Clary sage is okay once the mom has begun labor. Many doulas and midwives will help labor along by using it. Peppermint and sage do affect some women’s milk supply so proceed with caution for a few days until you know how your body reacts to it.

Sources:

SPECIAL OFFER:
This week only as a special “Sweet Pea Births” promotion, you will receive a free, large {15 mL} bottle of Orange essential oil when you order a kit, or spend $100 a la carte. Every kit includes a FREE diffuser and complimentary wholesale membership. If you opt for a la carte, there is a one-time $20 fee for your wholesale account which will last 12 months starting on the day of your first order. You will also receive 4 full-color Essential Oil Education sheets that will give you an amazing start using your essential oils daily in your home. These sheets cover:  Essential Oil Life Hacks, Emotional Health with Essential Oils, Care for your Baby/Child Naturally, and Proactive Health with Essential Oils.

 You have 1 week to order to take advantage of this great deal!
Offer good from May 8 - May 14, 2015

Orange is an intense, tangy essential oil that easily invigorates brain and body. It has become an invaluable remedy for many common problems that individuals may be facing. Orange is by far one of the most popular oils for beginners because of its ease of use and pleasant learning curve. With a crisp and refreshing scent, it has also become a favorite of aromatherapy enthusiasts.

Please note that the free bonus products will be shipped separately, and may take up to 2 weeks after the last day of the promotion to arrive at your home.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions.


Tina Lebedies
Cell 602-430-7224
http://tinalebedies.myameo.com/

Q&A with SPB: Self-Care for Mamas

Posted on April 28, 2015 at 3:01 PM Comments comments (0)

We have spent a lot of the month sharing information about cesarean birth, VBAC, and CBAC...

Ready for some pampering and renewal?  Some TLC??

 We are excited to announce that our friends Blue Russ and Jennifer Hoeprich are teaming up to host a Magical Mother's Day for mamas in the Phoenix, AZ area.

Jennifer stopped by to visit with us...here is a little more about their event coming up next month.



Join them on Saturday, May 30th, in Mesa, for six hours of AWESOME.  This is a local retreat designed with busy mamas in mind.  They will be pampered with professional foot massages after choosing the flower petals, salts, and essential oils you want for your super luxurious foot bath bar.  You will be tapping into our own unique gifts as mothers and honoring yourself, with a relaxing guided imagery session, as well as creating an intention for mothering over the next year, and taking action through inspiring vision boarding.  And, of course, there will be delicious, organic FOOD!  Believe it or not, all of this is offered at a partner-lovin’ price of just $147.

If you are thinking you want a double-dose of restoration and renewal, check out THIS event happening in the fall.  If you want a super-special Mother's Day gift, your family can purchase the Magical Mama Retreat weekend happening in Arcosanti this November in advance, and you will receive the Magical Mother's Day for free. 

I hope you can make it to one or both events and return to your family renewed and recharged.  I have met with Blue and Jennifer individually - and the results were amazing.  I can't even imagine having them both together for the day or the weekend - it will definitely be time well spent!

Disclaimer:
Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: convenient to Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonThe material included in this blog and video are for informational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The viewer should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog and video contain information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained in this video and on our blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.


 


VBAC: The BIG picture of the risks

Posted on April 24, 2015 at 9:58 AM Comments comments (0)
Uterine Rupture.   

If you have had a previous cesarean, this is THE “drop” word for many care providers when they have their “informed consent” talk with patients for consequent pregnancies.

Today I want to take a look at several other complications related to labor and delivery.  If your care provider is expecting you to be influenced by risk factors for uterine rupture, I think it is fair to look at all the other risk factors of pregnancy and labor in order to create a bigger picture and put things into perspective.

Pregnancy is generally considered a healthy time in a woman’s life.  In order to make life, the woman’s body has to be able to support that life.  In most cases, it is healthy women who become pregnant.  What do we have to be afraid of?  In most cases: nothing.  However, as with many if not all things in life, there is a certain level of risk, and yes, sometimes things go wrong.

So let’s start with the risk numbers for uterine rupture.  Read THIS blog post for an in depth look at the numbers.  Here is the summary of the incidence of uterine rupture, depending on what category you fall in:
 

  • Unscarred Uterus: 0.0033% (primigravidas) to 0.0051% (multigravidas)
  • VBAC: .5% - .7% 
  • VBA2C: 1.7%  (vaginal birth after 2 cesareans) 
  • VBAMC: 1.2%  (vaginal birth after multiple cesareans) 
  • Previous VBAC: .4% - .5%  (if you had a previous successful VBAC) 
  • VBAC + Augmented labor:  .9%  (stats for first attempt) 
  • VBAC + Induced labor: 1%  (stats for first attempt) 


So what are your risks of other complications of labor?





True statisticians are going to take issue with this oversimplification of comparisons.  In recognition that a percentage is more than its face value, here are the ratios and the sources for my information:

Postpartum Hemorrhage:  1/5 – .2000 – 20%
Definition:  “Postpartum hemorrhage is traditionally defined as blood loss greater than 500 mL during a vaginal delivery or greater than 1,000 mL with a cesarean delivery. However, significant blood loss can be well tolerated by most young healthy females, and an uncomplicated delivery often results in blood loss of more than 500 mL without any compromise of the mother's condition.” Quoted from Medscape  
 
“The incidence of postpartum hemorrhage is about 1 in 5 pregnancies, but this figure varies widely due to differential definitions for postpartum hemorrhage.” 
Stat SOURCE

Preterm labor and preterm delivery: 1/9 – .1111 – 11.11%
Definition: Baby born before 37 weeks
Stat SOURCE

Post-Maturity: 3-6%
Definition:  pregnancy past 42 weeks in which the placenta cannot provide the nourishment to maintain a healthy fetus
“The incidence of postdates ranges from 3 - 12% of all pregnancies. If the pregnancy is dated using ultrasound criteria, the incidence of post-dates is lower and ranges from 3 - 6%. Only 1 - 4% of all pregnancies continue to 43 weeks.”
Stat & Quote SOURCE

Breech presentation: 3-4 % of all deliveries
Definitions of the types of breech:
Frank breech (50 – 70% of all breeches): In a frank breech, the baby's buttocks lead the way into the pelvis; the hips are flexed, the knee extended (pike position).

Complete breech (5 – 10% of all breech): In a complete breech, both knees and hips are flexed, and the baby's buttocks or feet may enter the birth canal first (cannonball position).

Footling breech (10 – 30% of all breech): one or both feet lead the way.
Stat SOURCE for frank, complete, and footling breech birth

Transverse lie. A few babies lie horizontally in the uterus, called a transverse lie, which usually means the baby's shoulder will lead the way into the birth canal rather than the head.  1/500 –  .0020 – 0.20%
Stat SOURCE

Preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes before 37 weeks: 3%
3% of all pregnancies and occurs in approximately 150,000 pregnancies yearly in the United States 
Stat SOURCE

Preeclampsia:  2% to 6%
Definition:  a condition of pregnancy in which the mother’s blood pressure starts to rise to dangerously high levels, the indicator for possibility of more complications that are potentially fatal to mother and/or baby; 2% to 6% in healthy, nulliparous women (women who have never given birth yet) 
Stat SOURCE

Placenta Abruptio: 1.0%
Definition:  the placenta separates from the uterine wall before delivery of the baby
“The frequency of abruptio placentae in the United States is approximately 1%, and a severe abruption leading to fetal death occurs in 0.12% of pregnancies (1:830).”
Stat & Quote SOURCE

UTERINE RUPTURE STATS FALL HERE

Umbilical cord prolapse: 1/300 – .0033 – 0.33%
Definition: the umbilical cord precedes the baby in the birth canal
Stat SOURCE

Placenta Accreta: 1/533 – .0018 – 0.18%
Definition:  the placenta grows too deeply through the uterine wall 
July 2012 study publication
Stat SOURCE

What do you think now that you have seen a wide array of complications and risks?
Please leave us a comment - it will be moderated and posted.  
*I think* that the amount of traffic you so generously generate has led to a lot of spam posting.  In an effort to keep the spam to a minimum, I am taking the time to moderate comments now.

For more reading:
Uterine Rupture in Pregnancy: Article dated July 31, 2012

The Risks of Cesarean Section
http://www.motherfriendly.org/Resources/Documents/TheRisksofCesareanSectionFebruary2010.pdf

Disclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

Update: Placenta Pills

Posted on January 27, 2015 at 3:31 PM Comments comments (43)
Consuming the placenta has been found to be beneficial in the postpartum period to help alleviate postpartum hormone fluctuations (aka "baby blues"), increase milk supply, and reduce postpartum bleeding.  More and more women are choosing to ingest their placentas to take advantage of these benefits, and you can read about other benefits of "placentophagy" HERE.

Did You Just Insinuate, “Placenta” and, “Eat” in the Same Sentence?
 
Why, yes. Yes, I did.  When we first heard about it, both Bruss and I were completely grossed out and questioning if the natural birth community had finally gone off the deep end.  After doing more research and deciding we wanted to give it a try with our fourth placenta, we both came to the same conclusion: we had wasted three perfectly good placentas.  We encourage our students to do their reading and decide if it would work for them (see the end of this post for my resource list).
 
I have written about placenta encapsulation before HERE and HERE.  Since I wrote those posts, I have gotten questions via email and from our students. 
 
How is the placenta prepared for consumption?
There are two ways to prepare a placenta for consumption, raw and Traditional Chinese Medicine.  For a good outline of the differences and similarities, read THIS post written by Jules Moon.  Here is a quick summary:

Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, Payson 
What is a placenta tincture?
Info from IPEN
Placenta Tincture is made from a piece of the mother’s own raw placenta after birth, steeping in alcohol making a strong remedy over 6 weeks.  It is said that placenta tincture is used for emotional, mental and psychological instability and may also be very beneficial for treating PMS and menopause.
Read more HERE 

Can I take my placenta pills with subsequent pregnancies to help with morning sickness?
Answered with the help of Amanda Jaramillo and Amanda Santana:
The answer is, “No”.  There are a couple of concerns.  One is that it could disrupt normal pregnancy hormones by adding additional hormones from the placenta. The other is that placenta pills aid in contracting the uterus for. 

Neither of these possibilities is desirable during pregnancy. Consuming your placenta during the postpartum period aids in body processes that could lead to pregnancy loss if taken while pregnant.

The “safest” option for easing the symptoms of morning sickness seems to be herbal teas.  A good choice might be finding an herbalist that is knowledgeable about pregnancy.  Sometimes they can do more personalization than an over-the-counter product.  If not, most people find that the Earth Mama Angel Baby Morning Wellness Tea is a pretty green & clean option.
 
What are your thoughts on Placentophagy?
Please leave us a comment - it will be moderated and posted. 

Local Resources in Arizona:

Placenta Encapsulators I know personally:
RAW placenta preparation: Amanda Jaramillo – Heaven Sent PES http://www.placentaencapsulationaz.com/Home_Page.html
 
TCM placenta preparation: Trent Newell – Placenta Benefits.info http://placentabenefits.info/TrentNewell.asp
 
Herbalists for Pregnancy and Postpartum:
Diane Bajus
Healing Earth Botanicals offers teas for pregnancy, birth, postpartum & beyond, salves, bath blends, compresses, hydrosols, Super Green & more, along with custom blends.
Contact: authenticmidwife{at}q{dot}com
 
 


Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonDisclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

 

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