Archives for October 2009

How to Boost Your Daughter’s Self-Esteem

According to a study by Dove… 62% of teenage girls feel insecure about themselves. 57% of those girls have a mom who criticize their own looks. Yes, our daughters hear and see you when you look in the mirror and scowl at yourself!

These are the issues that are tackled in Session 1 of It’s A Girl Thing, a wonderful new speaker series focused on empowering moms and their pre-teen daughters. [Read more…]

Positive Parenting Tip: Freeze Tag

positive_Parenting_tipOur Yogi Parenting audio tips are presented every Friday by Michaela Turner, BS Ed, CYKT, YKT, Co-Founder Yogi Parenting

Counter-intuitively, if you need your kids to GO… Listen to this :15 AUDIO TIP:

Michaela is a 30 year veteran educator and a Certified YogaKids Teacher and Trainer. She teaches yoga baby and yoga kids classes for children throughout St. Louis, Missouri. As the Co-founder of Yogi Parenting, Michaela offers positive parenting coaching and seminars nationally, blending her joy for yoga with her love for children.

How to Grow a Healthy Baby

Dr. Colleen Stratton shares her Top 3 tips on pregnancy nutrition. It’s not just the fruits and vegetables… but protein, water, and omega 3 fatty acids. Video (2:51)

[Read more…]

Week 24: Cord Blood

cord bloodThis is what’s on my mind this week. It’s not sexy… I know. At least not as sexy as say, writing about our upcoming room-makeover for the twins’ nursery. But hey, it’s time for my husband and I to consider cord blood. From what I read it’s good to know if we want to collect this after the birth of our twins by week 27; that way if we decide to do this, we have plenty of time to manage all the details.

So hold on tight, I’m gonna share EVERYTHING I’ve learned so far about cord blood with you… starting with this enlightening link on the general benefits… including the fact that “To date it can treat more than 80 diseases using Haematopoietic Stem Cell (HSC) transplants, including leukemia, sickle cell anemia, and metabolic disorders.”

I’ve talked to a number of people about this, but it was my friend Julia who gave me the most thorough information. She told me not only about her decision to collect her son’s cord blood, but her experience in doing so as well. This is the sort of information you can only get from a friend. So of course I have to share it with you.

I am just one day from our six month OB visit and ultrasound (yippee!!!) so Julia’s timing with this information is impeccable. I plan to go over all that I’ve learned and any questions that I will no doubt have at my upcoming appointment.

So what have I learned? In a nutshell, that it’s best to think of collecting our twins’ cord blood as “insurance”… something you hope you’ll NEVER need, but if you do, man are you GLAD you have it. And I also learned it’s expensive.

The first question I had for my friend was given the cost, WHY did you decide to go ahead and do this? Her answer says it all:

“Santi and I thought about banking Aiden’s cord blood after I read about it in a magazine. After being a nurse in the PICU, I thought about all of the genetic disorders my patients had encountered, (i.e. various cancers, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy) and I wondered if there were anyway stem cells could have cured or at least improved their conditions. I also had an aunt pass away of leukemia the year before I had Aiden. She was able to get a life saving stem cell transplant, but after only a couple of months her body rejected the foreign stem cells and she passed away. She was only 40 years old. I often wondered if she could have gotten an autologous transplant (her own stem cells), if that would have saved her life.

I brought it up with my doctor and he told us he thought it was a great idea to bank our child’s cord blood. I remember him saying, ‘Twenty years ago, bone marrow transplants weren’t even possible. Who knows what’s going to be possible in the next twenty years.’ I think that was when we decided to go ahead and do it.”

So they did it. They made the investment. Julia says that there are two main companies that provide this service, CBR and ViaCord, and that in all her research they were close in price… about $2,000 per child give or take a $100. Wow. I don’t even want to see the price tag on twins!!! But my friend was encouraging here as well, telling me there’s a discount for medical professionals and for mothers of twins, payment plans (interest free) and a gift registry option. Can’t you just see yourself opening this at your baby shower?!?! A unique and practical gift to say the least. I can just hear Practical Mommy’s approval now. *wink*

OK. I know this isn’t for everyone, but as a medical professional, I have to say, I am definitely interested in the benefits it could have in the way of health and healing. SO I dig a little deeper. I asked my friend for resources… where to go, who to call. Here is her reply:

“A great resource for accurate info that is independently operated is You can also check out CBR’s website and even take an online tour of their lab. The Cord Blood Education Specialist that I worked with at CBR was Jennifer Lind. She was a great help from the beginning to the end of the process. Her e-mail is and her phone number is (800) 588-6377 Ext. 686.”

I found this page helpful which lists a number of Public and Private Banks. So there you have it. You now know everything I know on the matter. I’ll be talking to my doctor tomorrow and plan to talk with someone at CBR as well this week so I’ll keep you posted.

If you’ve had kids, did you do this? If you are pregnant, have you heard about the benefits of cord blood? Are you weighing whether or not to go there as well? Tell me all and I’ll let you know what I decide soon.


Shower_HugBaby(s) Watch is published in partnership with The Shower Hug, essential for breast pain relief during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

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23 Weeks : Baby Fat
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21 Weeks : Flu Bug
20 Weeks : Parents As Teachers
19 Weeks : Sleep
18 Weeks : Breastfeeding
17 Weeks : Childbirth
16 Weeks : Sex of the Babies. We’re having…
15 Weeks : Baby name Game
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13 Weeks : Mindful Nesting
12 Weeks : My Changing Pregnant Body
How Spirit Moves

Suzanne Tucker, aka Zen Mommy
In addition to mommying to two magical girls born in 2000 and 2003 and expecting twins in Jan of 2010, Suzanne co-owns a holistic health center with her husband Shawn in St. Louis, Missouri  where she practices as a physical therapist, Certified Infant Massage Instructor and health education teacher. Certified Educator of  Infant Massage and health education teacher. Certified in a number of healing and life education approaches, Suzanne is a Co-creator of My Mommy Manual and the online parenting course, Yogi Parenting, a positive parenting approach for raising kids of all ages.

How to Talk About Sex

… with your kids! The birds and the bees is a subject that makes most of my girlfriends squirm. It’s inevitable that the subject of how to approach the subject of sex comes up. This very often leads to hilarious accounts of how they have chosen to tackle it.

“Mom, I know how the doctor takes the baby out of you but… how does he put it in there?”

“Mom, is it true that babies are made by rubbing?”

“Yes. The stork comes.”

[Read more…]

Zen Mommy Minute: Fun Halloween Tips for Parents

This Halloween, keep it safe for sure… but also keep it FUN! Here are three simple tips to keep you and your kids smiling all Monster Mash night long:

  1. Share stories from Halloween past with your kids. Tell them about when you were little. What were your favorite costumes growing up? Favorite candy? Family traditions?
  2. Look up the meaning and origins of Halloween on the internet with your kids. Tweens might especially get a kick out of this.
  3. Keep the pressure off, especially around costumes, telling jokes and going to a certain number of houses to trick – or – treat. There’s no right or wrong here. Focus on the F-U-N. It’s easy to get wrapped up in all the things your neighbors are doing but remember (especially for young kids) less is more. [Read more…]

How Do You Discipline a Teenager?

Keep_CalmI’ve always been one to watch for a sign that might help me deal with whatever might be churning in my head.  That’s because whatever is churning in my head is also likely to make my stomach churn if it stays there too long.  Today, I saw just what I needed: keep calm and carry on.  And, it was literally on a poster. I couldn’t have asked for anything clearer.

The British Ministry of Information originated the encouraging slogan in 1939, but it was never used. It’s certainly been put to good use 70 years later. I’ve since learned that this slogan is available on almost everything from a postcard to a tea towel. You think I would have seen it at least once before now. But, then again, maybe I didn’t need to see it so much until now.

Today, I am thinking about how I cope with growing children and the growing complexity of problems that can come with the territory. This is because Bonni brought up the subject of disciplining children as they get older.
[Read more…]

How to Nurture Your Daughter’s Body Image

How can you build your daughter’s body image at the critical tween age? Carrie Silver-Stock, is one of our Expert Mommies. She is a licensed social worker who has had years of experience working with teen girls. Carrie is the author of Secrets Girls Keep.

Do you notice what messages you are sending to your daughter about your own self-image? What are some of the things you do to consciously send positive messages about body image in your family?

[Read more…]

23 Weeks: Baby Fat

baby fat croppedThis may sound superficial but what I find unique about this last week of pregnancy is the fun I’m having dressing-up the bump.  23 weeks along is just a fun size to be… big enough that you are obviously pregnant but not so big that you are uncomfortable 24/7. But at the rate my waistline seems to be expanding these days, I’m not sure how long the glory days of playing baby bump dress-up will last. If I stared at my belly long enough, I’m certain I would see it expanding right before my very eyes. At least that’s how it feels.

Turns out science supports the way I am feeling [Read more…]

How to Maintain Your Home with a New Baby

dishesIt’s 9:30 in the evening. The baby has been asleep for at least a couple hours and your other kids are tucked in bed. What’s next? The dishes, a load of laundry and pick up toys? You know, I’m just tired writing about this. Those are the last things you feel like doing aren’t they? I can’t help you have less dishes or laundry, but I can give you a couple tips and sure fire ways to make some of those tasks easier to handle. Yes, even your tired mommy self can do it, get to bed and be the “bestest” Mom in the world the next day. [Read more…]