Having A Baby?

Take A Childbirth Class!

Childbirth Class exercises

30 Reasons to Take A Childbirth Class

  • To prepare for one of life’s most miraculous moments
  • To learn about the many choices you have during pregnancy, labor and birth
  • To stay healthy and low risk during pregnancy and birth
  • To become a more informed pregnancy & birth consumer
  • To avoid unnecessary pain during labor and birth
  • To learn how to create a supportive labor team
  • To coach my loved one through labor
  • To learn that sex during pregnancy is safe and healthy
  • To learn how to avoid an induction
  • To learn about pain medications used during labor
  • To avoid an episiotomy
  • To eat during labor
  • To drink during labor
  • To avoid a C-section
  • To spend as little time at the hospital as possible
  • To learn about my alternative birth place options
  • To celebrate the joyousness of pregnancy and birth
  • To be reassured that my body can “do this”
  • To enhance your relationship with your partner
  • To avoid an extended hospital stay for me or my baby
  • To learn about newborn procedures and choose only those procedures that work our family
  • To learn more about breastfeeding
  • To enhance my family advocacy skills
  • To remain present and involved in my labor
  • To learn how to relax and let my body take over
  • To learn how to help my body heal faster after the birth
  • To learn about the benefits of skin-to-skin contact with baby
  • To avoid the hospital nursery
  • To create a birthplan/birthwish list
  • To start my parenting journey off to a good start

Check out my upcoming Childbirth Class Schedule for Class Date and Times!

Cracked Nipples?

      Breastfeeding? Cracked Nipples? It happens. Typically cracked nipples are a result of a poor latch. Correcting your latch will help significantly. Healing the cracked nipples requires BREAST MILK and AIR (of course a little sunshine would be nice too)!  Yes, just express some breast milk and coat your nipples with it. Leave your bra flaps down and let air dry the breast milk on your nipples. Repeat often.

Walk around Topless!  If you must wear a shirt, make it a white cotton t-shirt.
In as little as 24 hours your nipples could be healed and MUCH less painful.No Protectants! Notice that I never mentioned lanolin or any other protectant. Breast milk is healing and that is necessary for healing cracked nipples. Breast milk is free and you have plenty of it!

Keep Breastfeeding!  Keep putting baby to breast but be hyper vigilant about the latch and your posture. If the pain is too much, pump and take a break through the night. By morning your nipples will be healed enough to get right back at it!

Mouthing Off Middle Schooler

As some of you many know, I blog for the Clayton/Richmond Heights Patch.  Here is an interesting question posed by a middle school parent:  Suppose your son just got suspended from middle school for three days. He was impudent and talked back to his teacher in front of everyone.

 So onto this week’s question: What do you do now as a parent to make sure this never happens again?

As the parent of a tween and a teen, this one hit close to home.

Concern & Respect: Of course it is essential to immediately express your concern for your child while making it clear that disrespecting adults in this manner is unacceptable. Clearly the child is experiencing something he is unprepared to handle.  Listen to your child’s side of the story, pay attention to your child’s perception of the “incident”.  Validating your child’s feelings is important.  Once you have taken care of your child’s needs, ask your child how the situation could have gone better.  Encourage him to come up with alternative strategies for dealing with this and similar situations.

Consequences: The school probably instituted a quick and logical consequence (notifying parents, lunch or after school detention).   You may not need to add a further consequence unless you feel more is necessary.  As always the consequence should be as logical as possible.   For some children the public format of the school consequence is plenty.  You may enlist your child in creating an appropriate consequence.  I am always surprised at how thoughtful children are when creating their own consequences.

Future Strategies: If mouthing off to adults is way out of character for your middle school child, I suggest that a total reconnecting with your child is in order.  Our tweens and teens are so independent these days that it is easy to forget that they are still learning how to navigate the wider world.  We all have busy lives and tend to let the little things slide like dinner together or hang out time together. Take the time to reconnect through some seemingly mundane activities.  Tweens & teens are more likely to share what’s going on with them while doing a parallel activities like raking leaves.  Nonchalantly schedule some one-on-one time with some sort of parallel activity. Make the space for conversation without the intensity of having a “big” talk.  Once you understand what is going on with your child you will be able to help him advocate for himself in an appropriate manner in the future.

Saying Goodbye to the Crib

Toddler Transitions: Saying goodbye to the crib is a big milestone for both parents and children.  Most parents will miss the safety of the crib and wistfully wish for the days when their little one couldn’t climb out of bed. Toddlers are usually excited by the new sleeping arrangements and a little fearful of this newfound freedom.  Whenever possible, a gradual shift from crib to toddler bed is best for most children.

Goodbye Crib:  Some children benefit from a formal goodbye ceremony.  While other children are too interested in the new bed to look back at the crib.  Gage your child and find the best solution.  If you own a crib that converts into a toddler bed, have your child “help” as you transform the bed.

Naptime Experiments:  Testing out the new bed during naptime gives you all a chance to acclimate to this change in sleep routine.   Lowering your expectation for actual sleep during naptime may help you feel better as your child tests the boundaries of the new bed.

Take a Deep Breath:  As always, approaching this new twist in the routine with a matter-of-fact or nonchalant attitude will help your child see the change as “normal”.  Center yourself and keep your energy in check as your toddler learns the ins and outs of the bed.  Remember that all children are unique and respond differently to change.

Safety First:  A safety gate or half-door is a must as your little one learns to stay in bed and in the room.  Pushing the bed up against a wall and placing a safety rail on the other side will help your child avoid rolling out of bed.  Toddler beds also utilize the same or similar crib safety mattress.

No Fun Zone:  If your child is used to playing in his or her room, naptime or bedtime with a toddle bed can be challenging.  With no barrier, children can just hop out of bed and play.  Creating a “no fun zone” during naptime and bedtime may help the transition.  Parents have very creative ways of taking the fun out of the room.  It may be as simple as relocating the toy box.  While other parents have a special quilt that covers the toys during naptime and bedtime.

Smooth Transition:  Enlist your child’s help in making up the new bed.  Ask your child to choose who will share the bed with him/her – a stuffed animal or special blanket?  For most children this is the first time a pillow is introduced.  Point out how your child’s bed is just like your big bed with a pillow and everything.  Encourage your child to test out the bed, while you state how comfy and snuggly the new bed feels.

Total sleep independence is within your reach.  Toddlers are growing and changing so quickly that their sleep is often disturbed.  Be patient and know that this to shall pass; every child learns to sleep in a bed when they are ready.  You are the expert when it comes to your child.  With a little thought and planning you can institute the best transition method to meet your child’s needs.  For more information on toddler sleep transitions contact Kim at newborn.family.coach@gmail.com.


Delayed Cord Clamping?

As you know, parenting your newborn begins at conception.  The choices for your child’s health and wellbeing are numerous while in utero and increase exponentially at birth!  One of the choices you get to make immediately after birth is whether or not to delay the clamping your newborns’ umbilical cord?

The placenta miraculously oversees all of baby’s needs in utero until it detaches from the uterus after baby is born. Up until the placenta detaches the umbilical cord carries all of the messages to and from baby’s body. I consider there to be an ongoing conversation between the placenta and baby’s body – the umbilical cord keeps the conversation going. Clamping and cutting the cord at birth before the placenta detaches i.e. without waiting for the conversation to be completed, may deprive baby of blood, nutrients, hormones and much more. Several studies support delaying cord clamping for at least 3 minutes, if not until the placenta is detached.

Here is a link to article by on OB on the subject.



Stop the Soda Sipping Habit Today

Are your children drinking too much soda?  

Image  The soda sipping habit can be cured by employing a few simple strategies.  However, the adults in the family may feel more “pain” during the habit breaking process than the children.  The old adage of “do as I say not as I do” doesn’t usually work with children.

Strategies to Stop the Slide down the Soda Sipping Slope

  1. Model The Way: If you don’t want your kids to drink soda, don’t drink it yourself or at least not at home.  Model the behavior you want to see in your children.  If you want them to choose healthier beverages, choose them yourself.  I know this may put a crimp in your style, but in the long run your children and your body will thank you.
  2. Limit Availability & Access: Do not make soda available at home.  If there isn’t any soda chilling in the easily accessible fridge, they will have to make a different beverage choice (and so will you).
  3. Establish an Occasional Junk Food Holiday: Institute a family rule that soda is only allowed on certain occasions, like at the lake or at grandma’s house.  You may need to place limits on the amount available on these special occasions as well.
  4. Water – the new Soda:  Replace sugary soda with all natural, free and healthy water. If your child goes on a beverage strike and refuses to drink – IGNORE the beverage strike.  Your child will eventually drink water when they are truly thirsty.  Purchase some fun new cups and straws for water drinking.  Have your child help you make some flavored water.  See the recipe below.

Please keep in mind that you can make these changes with out big discussions and tantrums.  The next time you go to the store, do not purchase any soda. When the kids ask about the missing soda simply state “We only drink water at home.”.

Lemon Mint Water

1 pitcher of water

1 sliced lemon (remove seeds)

5-8 fresh mint leaves

Stir, then place in the fridge until cold.


Birth Prep 101

Your pregnant body is quite amazing; it knows just how to build the life of your child.  All you need to do to support the life building process is eat well, exercise, rest and hydrate.

Fueling The Pregnant Body:  3 meals & 2 snacks daily

Pregnant women are encouraged to eat at least 3 meals and 2 snacks daily.  Dr. Brewer recommends eating at least every 2 hours, never letting your baby-building factory run out of fuel.  See the Brewer Diet for more specifics on eating for a healthy mom & baby.  http://www.drbrewerpregnancydiet.com/id96.html.

Gearing Up for the Birthathon:  Preparing the Belly, Back & Bottom

Birthing a baby is the equivalent of running a marathon.  Would you run a marathon without proper training?  Of course not!  You have months to train for your birthathon.  Get started as soon as possible.  If you already have an exercise regimen in place you can keep up your workouts with some basic fine tuning.  It is important to add exercises that stretch and tone the three areas – Belly, Back & Bottom- most involved in the birthing process.  Check out this link for the best pregnancy exercises http://wp.me/P2pHqV-25

Choose Your Birth Team Wisely:  Natural Birth?  Medicated Birth? Home Birth?

The birth of your child is one of life’s most miraculous experiences.  Surround yourself with a team of supportive birth professionals that will help you meet your goals.  Research all of your pregnancy and birth options. It is important to determine your pregnancy and birth goals so you can choose the best birth team.  Birth Team Consults available.

Take A Childbirth Class:  Private Birth Classes or Hospital Classes

Private, comprehensive childbirth classes provide you with a broad range of information and options about pregnancy, labor, birth and newborn baby preparation.  Hospital classes can be a source of information as well, however, most couples feel they need more information and support than hospital classes offer.  Check out these comprehensive birth class options; Joyful & Informed Natural Childbirth, Birth Wisely, Blessed Beginnings Childbirth and Delightful Pregnancy & Birth.