February 2, 2016

Let Go of the Mom Guilt

Are you holding onto some Mom Guilt right now?

It's funny; when I was growing up, I was often told by my Dad to take care of number 1 and I never really fully understood what that meant until I became a mom. I always thought that it meant sticking up for yourself, defining your own path, and to a degree not caring if what is best for you hurts other people.

Now that I'm a mom, I understand it in a totally different way.

One thing that we tell our postpartum clients is that it is important to take care of themselves. Whether that means a 15 minute break in the evening to run out for a coffee (drive-thru's were made for parents, I'm convinced!) without children in the back seat, or a hot shower at the end of a long day. Whatever it means for you, take care of yourself.

You cannot pour water into a cup from an empty pitcher, after all.

The same goes for taking care of your family. There will be sleepless nights, there will be diapers to change, there will be mouths to feed and emotions to soothe.

And if you are run ragged and are stressed and feel like you don't know who you are anymore, how can you do any of those things? How can you be expected to do any of those things?

I find that often when I fail to take care of myself it's because of mom guilt. I feel like I shouldn't be taking that time to decompress. And then, a few days later, I feel like a monster, all wrapped up in my own head because I didn't take that time. It's a rather vicious circle, really.

Take that time. You matter, and the better you are to yourself, the more you are showing those around you that you are worthy, you are valuable and that they too should be taking care of themselves in little ways.

Let the self love flow!!


February 1, 2016

February Workshop Announcements

Cheers to a new month! This month at North Yoga & Wellness we are bringing some awesome workshops on Sunday afternoons!

All of these workshops will be hosted at North Yoga & Wellness, 1615 North Routledge Park Road (Unit 23) in London, Ontario!

To register, email info@sweetstellas.com or call 519-719-3578

January 27, 2016

Tour of our Doula Bag

Another new feature this year...a look inside our doula bag! Every month, we will feature a different item from our doula bag, explain why we have it, what we use it for, and how it aids in your birth experience.

A photo posted by Shannon Moyer-Szemenyei (@sweetstellas) on

Gum and Lollipops

These are items time and again that I consider actually taking out of our doula bag, but then all of a sudden...whamo! Mom gets sick to her stomach, or the air in the birthing suite at the hospital is just unbearably stale and Mom needs a lollipop to suck on.

Or....in a mad dash to get out of the house, I forget to brush my teeth!

Sometimes when labour is long and exhausting, and Mom unfortunately isn't allowed to eat anything and doesn't want another cup of ice, a lollipop or piece of gum is a nice alternative.

Essentially, life happens and sometimes all you need is a piece of gum to freshen up, or a lollipop as a distraction while you're having contractions and labouring in the tub.

No matter the reason, we have you covered.We stock peppermint Pur gum that is aspartame free, and a variety of lollipops, from cherry to rootbeer, strawberry to watermelon. My favourite lollipops are the Jolly Rancher ones, as they are incredibly flavourful!


January 19, 2016

Home Remedies for Colds during Pregnancy

It is that time of year again, yup you guessed it! Cold and flu season! ICK! Cold and flu season sucks in general, but it is HORRIBLE when you are pregnant. There are not a whole lot of things you can take that are safe for a baby. Fear not! There is no need to suffer through it! Here are some home remedies to try out. 

Chicken Soup – No surprise here right?  I don’t know about you but my Grandma makes an amazing chicken soup and it always makes me feel better.

Neti Pot – You mix a warm saline solution and pour it through your nasal passages. It clears out all the junk and helps you breath better! This may be a little on the gross side, but since it is only saline it doesn’t affect your baby!  If you are too afraid to try a neti pot there is a squirt bottle version available now too or you could hold your head over a bowl of hot water and the steam will have a similar effect.  

Keep Hydrated – This one probably isn’t all that surprising either, but when you aren’t feeling well it is easy to put this on the back burner.  Keeping hydrated is very important during pregnancy because dehydration can cause contractions. 

Honey, Lemon, Ginger Tea –This mix is amazing because the honey is an anti-viral and will help soothe your throat, the lemon has vitamin C and the ginger is an anti-inflammatory.  Can’t get much better than that!

Hot Compress – Applying a hot compress to your sinuses or sore muscles will ease your pain and tenderness.  The heat will take down the swelling and help clear out your nasal passages.

Night-Time Humidifier - Having a humidifier will make it easier for you to breathe at night and they are great for babies too.  Why not buy one for the nursery early and test it out on yourself.

Sleep with Head Held High – When you are congested it is hard to sleep on your side. It is hard enough sleeping when you are pregnant as it is.  So, prop that head up so you can breathe easier.  Even if that means you are basically in a seated position, that’s ok! Do whatever it takes to get that much needed sleep.

Hopefully you do not catch that awful cold or flu this season, but, if you do, hopefully some of these tips will help you through it.


*disclaimer: these tips for managing colds during pregnancy do not replace the care and medical advice of your health care professional. Before attempting any home remedy, please consult your doctor or midwife.

January 15, 2016

What Does Non-Judgmental Support Mean?

Whenever we meet with a new family, we are often asked for our opinions on their parenting style, wishes for their birth, for our own birth stories or for how we have supported our clients in the past.

Ultimately, non-judgmental doula support means keeping our personal opinions out of your care and providing you with unconditional, unbiased support so that you can make a confident and supported decision for you and your family.

In a world where everyone has an opinion, what you do for your family and how you tend to your body during birth are definitely not the places for other peoples opinions. Truly, you know your body best, and you know exactly what feels right for you in your birthing process.

Similarly, you know your family and the inter workings of the members in your family best. No one is in a better position to make decisions that impact your family other than you! So, from where we sit, it would be doing you an your family a disservice if we pretended to know what would work for you, or ever implied that one way of parenting is better than another.

Our stance will always be, do what is best for you. And we will support it.

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