Q & A: Julie Qualle, DC

Q & A:  Julie Qualle, DC

I'm so happy to be able to share this question and answer with Julie Qualle, DC! She is an amazing chiropractor who specializes in prenatal, postpartum and pediatric care. Not only have I had clients rave about her, I’ve also had the pleasure of seeing Dr. Julie myself. She is such a caring, nurturing person and truly gifted healer. Read on to hear directly from Julie.

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Do I Really Need a Childbirth Ed Class? 5 Myths

Do I Really Need a Childbirth Ed Class? 5 Myths

Maybe you just got your big fat positive, or maybe your estimated due date is fast approaching, and as you ponder your birth planning options while also looking at your calendar, your bank account, or your partner you wonder, “do I really need a childbirth ed class?” Short answer yes. Don’t fall for these 5 myths!

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Going Back to Work? 5 Tips for Pumping Enough Milk

Going Back to Work? 5 Tips for Pumping Enough Milk

After baby arrives and you start getting into a groove with breastfeeding, you may start to wonder, “when does the pump come in? How do I build a stash for going back to work? How will I manage to make it all work when I go back?” Here are 5 tips to help you pump enough for baby when you go back to work.

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Q&A: Ingrid Andersson, Nurse Midwife- Founder of Mother's Milk Alliance

Q&A:  Ingrid Andersson, Nurse Midwife- Founder of Mother's Milk Alliance

I'm absolutely thrilled to share this question and answer with Ingrid Andersson,  RN, CNM, MS.  Not only is she, as a friend put it, "just an amazing human," she is the Founder and President of Mothers' Milk Alliance, Inc., a Board member of Women's Medical Fund, Inc., member of the Dane County Public Health Fetal and Infant Mortality Review team and former Steering Committee member of Wisconsin Environmental Health Network. She has been a regular guest speaker in the UW-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health and Department of Gender and Women's Studies, as well as at Edgewood College, Madison College and Dane County Emergency Services. Prior to midwifery, she worked as a volunteer family crisis intervention counselor and later as a doula. For 8 years, she worked as an RN in high-risk antepartum, postpartum, newborn and breastfeeding care at St Mary's Hospital (SSM Health) in Madison. While a nurse, she travelled to Kenya to learn from traditional birth attendants and British-trained midwives.  Read on to hear directly from Ingrid.

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Learn From a Local Expert About Midwifery: Emily Beaman, CNM, DNP

Learn From a Local Expert About Midwifery: Emily Beaman, CNM, DNP

"Certified Nurse Midwives approach birth with a “high-touch, low-tech” philosophy – we know the value of skilled labor support and avoid routine intervention.  We are with our women throughout their labor, supporting them as desired and working closely with partners, doulas, and other labor support persons." - Emily Beaman

I could NOT be more excited to feature amazing Madison midwife Emily Beaman on my blog today!  This Q&A comes at such an exciting time as SSM Dean Health announced earlier this week that there is now another option for care in Madison with their brand NEW midwifery practice- including experienced Certified Nurse Midwives Emily Beaman, Mara Evans, and Kimberly Bertram.  Read on to hear from Emily about this exciting new option for full-scope midwifery care, as well as what clinic and hospital based midwifery care entails.

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You're Getting Very Sleepy: 5 Myths About Childbirth Hypnosis

You're Getting Very Sleepy:  5 Myths About Childbirth Hypnosis

What do you think of when you think of hypnosis?  Swinging shiny objects, snapping fingers, people slumped in their chairs, a low-rent comedian making people quack like ducks?  I'm willing to bet whatever comes to mind is absolutely nothing like the true experience of using childbirth hypnosis.  I know, as I've used it personally for my two births, as well as supported many doula clients as they have used it to successfully achieve easier, more comfortable birth experiences.

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Birth Preferences (Part 5): Fetal Monitoring

Birth Preferences (Part 5):  Fetal Monitoring

A lot of families I support as a doula aren't aware that they'll likely have a choice when it comes to how their baby is monitored during labor, and don't realize how large an impact this choice can have on how a birth unfolds.  So, what are the different types of monitoring, and which is best for you?  Read on for a little background info that may help when discussing this important decision with your provider.

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Baby Registry Ideas: My Top 10 Picks

Baby Registry Ideas:  My Top 10 Picks

As a doula, I am often asked if I have any recommendations for a baby registry.  In fact I do!  Having two young kids myself, as well as having heard feedback on baby products from many new parents, I feel like I could be considered somewhat of an expert on the topic.  Granted, everyone's different, so take this with a grain of salt, but you should probably have something to compare against all the advice you're getting from strangers at the grocery store, am I right? 

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Guest Blog: Healthy Eating Through the Childbearing Year

Guest Blog:  Healthy Eating Through the Childbearing Year

Many stressors typically accompany the nine-month journey of pregnancy, and I want to help uncover the frustration of eating healthy when you’re expecting. Other factors that play into this include the food aversions that many women experience during this time, the time consuming grocery shopping when you’re drained of energy, the dreadful meal prepping, and then countless hours in the kitchen cooking. If this sounds like the feelings you are experiencing, then read on. It’s my hope to help healthy eating not feel like a chore to you, but rather something that can be done rather quickly and you don’t dread doing.

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Giving Birth Live on Facebook is All the Rage

Giving Birth Live on Facebook is All the Rage

The description of Paige LoPinto's private Facebook Group begins, "If April the giraffe can do it, so can I. ☺"  She goes on to state that her motivation for live streaming her home birth on Facebook is her love of birth, and a desire to educate, empower, inspire and connect with other like minded women.  She has achieved this goal- in the early morning hours of August 25th of this year, she gave birth to her beautiful daughter at home as hundreds of viewers from around the world looked on via her Facebook group "Paige's Home Birth".  The video has since been viewed almost 17 THOUSAND times.  

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Getting Back to Exercise After Baby

Getting Back to Exercise After Baby

So today, I went for my fourth "run" since I gave birth to my second daughter, who is almost eight weeks old.  Since my Mother-in-law offered to take my toddler for the day, I got to get outside and bring my littlest along in the jogging stroller... and it was awesome.  I put "run" in quotations only because well, there was a fair amount of walking.  But it was a beautiful day, my baby was sleeping for most of it, and even though I have a ways to go to get back to my pre-baby fitness level, I felt great.  While I was out there, I got to thinking about the process of getting back to exercise after baby, and I wanted to share a couple of tips I think may help other moms in the same boat.

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Our Story: On Birth and New Motherhood the Second Time Around

Our Story:  On Birth and New Motherhood the Second Time Around

We welcomed our second daughter 12 days ago, and I wanted to get my thoughts down about our experience while they are still fresh.  I share our story because I enjoy reading the stories of others, whether they are similar or very different than my own.  I find birth stories of all kinds magical and fascinating.  There is no right way to birth or to mother, each person's experience is unique, and we each have our own journey.  Here is just a little snapshot of mine this time around.

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Learn from a Local Expert About Acupunture: Shannon Gyles MSOM, CA- Acupuncturist and Chinese Herbalist at New Moon Wellness

Learn from a Local Expert About Acupunture:  Shannon Gyles MSOM, CA- Acupuncturist and Chinese Herbalist at New Moon Wellness

I am beyond delighted to be able to share this Q&A with Shannon Gyles, Acupuncturist and Chinese Herbalist at New Moon Wellness.  Known as a go-to person to see during pregnancy in Madison, Shannon is one of the few alternative health care practitioners in the area that specialize in women's health.  As her website states, "Shannon has found her true calling in working with fertility, pregnancy, and postpartum, helping facilitate healthy babies, healthy mamas, and healthy families.  She personally understands the joy and difficulty with the changing demands on the body during pregnancy, postpartum, and caring for a newborn.  In conjunction, she is honored to be able to work with women to prep the body and baby for labor and finds great joy in helping facilitate initiating labor when needed."  Read on to learn more from Shannon about acupuncture during the childbearing year.

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Learn from a Local Expert About Birth Photography: Beth Skogen, Lifestyle and Natural Light Photographer

Learn from a Local Expert About Birth Photography:  Beth Skogen, Lifestyle and Natural Light Photographer

I reached out to Beth a few months ago, after Googling birth photographers in Madison, and was immediately captivated by the images I found on her website.  To say Beth is talented at capturing the raw emotion and true essence of birth (and everything she photographs) is truly an understatement.  Since then, I've had the pleasure of witnessing her in action during a client's birth (see those photos on my website), and was so excited that she was willing to do this Q&A to provide more info about birth photography.  Read on to learn a little more about what's behind her magic.

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I Call BS: Why I Don't Believe in the "Birth Plan Curse" and Neither Should You

I Call BS:  Why I Don't Believe in the "Birth Plan Curse" and Neither Should You

You may have heard of something called the “birth plan curse”, or something along those lines.   The basic idea being that the more detailed a birth plan, the more likely a woman is to end up with a c-section.  I’ve heard this idea tossed around, encountered it in online labor and delivery nurse forums, and I’ve even had a client once report that a nurse told her after her Cesarean birth that it was essentially her detailed plan that caused it.  Today I’d like to call this ideology out for what I believe it is.  Complete and utter BS.

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Interview with Celebrity Doula Lori Bregman, Author of The Mindful Mom-to-Be

Interview with Celebrity Doula Lori Bregman, Author of The Mindful Mom-to-Be

I was blown away when I heard back from Celebrity Doula Lori Bregman (within about 20 minutes!) after emailing to ask her if she would do this Q&A.  Not only do I love her book The Mindful Mom-to-Be, but I truly admire the work she does as a doula, life coach, and healer with over 15 years experience, and a client list that includes Molly Sims, Kristen Bell & Dax Shepherd, Jillian Michaels & Heidi Rhoades, Kelly Rowland, Jessica Biel, Heidi Klum, and many more.  I'll be giving away a copy of her book to one lucky winner who signs up for my Prenatal Yoga and Birth Prep Mini Class series, but I urge every expectant mom out there to check it out!  It is a relatively quick read, yet filled with helpful month-to-month information about your growing body and baby, nutritional advice, natural remedies including yoga poses to help with pregnancy-related discomforts, techniques for labor, and even spiritual and emotional exercises to help you prepare for motherhood.  Read on for the Q&A with Lori discussing The Mindful Mom-to-Be.

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Lactation Cookies So Amazing Your Partner Will Steal Them

Lactation Cookies So Amazing Your Partner Will Steal Them

What's the deal with lactation cookies?

Lactation cookies are cookies that contain galactagogues, substances believed to increase milk supply.  While I do not want to put forth or reinforce the idea that you need extra stuff or a special diet in order to successfully breastfeed (most women don't), or that lactation cookies should be your first go-to if you have concerns about milk supply (they shouldn't), I do believe in trying something for yourself to see if it works for you, as long as it won't harm you (and especially if the thing in question is this delicious).

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Laughing Gas for Labor? Nitrous Oxide Now Offered at St. Mary's in Madison

Laughing Gas for Labor? Nitrous Oxide Now Offered at St. Mary's in Madison

As previously written in the blog I wrote about labor coping strategies, the most common pain management options during labor in this country include IV opioid or epidural medication.  Recently however, an additional option became available at St. Mary's here in Madison-  nitrous oxide.  Read on to learn more about the history of the use of "laughing gas" in labor, how it works, the benefits, the risks, and what the experts are saying.

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Learn from a Local Expert About Prenatal Yoga: Aja Lefebvre, Certified Prenatal Yoga Instructor at The Studio

Learn from a Local Expert About Prenatal Yoga:  Aja Lefebvre, Certified Prenatal Yoga Instructor at The Studio

I've been a lover of yoga for some time, practicing on and off for about the last 10 years.  So, as both a doula and expectant mother, I had been looking more into prenatal yoga offerings in Madison, and I was so happy when Aja Lefebvre, instructor at The Studio, agreed to participate in a Q&A for this blog!  Read on for lots of great info from Aja about yoga during pregnancy.

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