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Mindful Pregnancy – Meditation for a Healthy Pregnancy & Birth

We’ve all heard the latest in meditation trends – meditate for 15 minutes in the morning before you start your day. As a yoga teacher, I definitely concur with that philosophy. When I stay consistent with my meditation practice my day flows better, the things that can trigger me and agitate me seem to just roll off my back like Teflon. My favorite thing to listen to as I begin my day is Ester Hicks rampage of positive momentum. I also love listening to Mantras and Gregorian Chants. One can listen to ocean and nature sounds; the Hypnobirthing Affirmations; and simply be in silence. And whatever your flavor is, there’s no question about it: Meditating every day does wonders for the mind, body, and spirit.

And it usually isn’t for lack of time when I miss my morning meditation. I manage an old neck and back injury (L4, L5/S1), with a slight Scoliosis to boot, so for me it’s more a matter of having access to a comfortable cushion. It’s what partially motivated me to become a Yoga teacher. Crazy, I know, but that’s for another blog.

Proper sitting posture in pregnancy is so important for the preparation for birth. I listened to Pregnancy Chiropractor, Dr. Jeanne Ohm, has said that when a “sacrum is displaced by sitting, accidents, and major trauma to the spine, it can cause more difficult births and slower labors.”

There are so many benefits of meditating during pregnancy and childbirth. Here is a great article to help convince you of the benefits of quieting your mind and going Zen:

I recently discovered the You Matr cushion, made by Lauren Stephanoff, a California-based yoga mama-preneur! These cushions are ergonomically-sound so […]

By |November 22nd, 2017|General Topics, Kids Yoga, Mommy, Yoga|Comments Off on Mindful Pregnancy – Meditation for a Healthy Pregnancy & Birth

Fenugreek Bars – Lactation Treats for Nursing Moms

 I am so excited to share Mrs. Patel’s Lactation Tea and Gluten-free Vegan Chocolate bars! That’s right, CHOCOLATE!
Mrs. Patel so kindly sent me a box of these treats and lactation tea so that I could share in my Mommy & Baby Yoga classes at YogaWorks Playa Vista.
I was curious about the taste so I tried the bar myself and whoah, it tasted so good! Mrs. Patel’s treats are gluten-free and may contain almonds. They keep well in the fridge for 1 1/2 months and in the freezer for 3 months. Mrs. Patel’s lactation treats do not contain preservatives. The treats also come in other flavors such as Peanut Butter, Salted Caramel White, and Vegan Original.
Try Mrs. Patel’s Lactation tea of fresh leaves and herbs. Steep the fresh tea blend for 5-7 minutes and drink straight or with coconut milk and honey.


Mrs. Patel’s treats and teas are handcrafted artisanal lactation products based on the tenets of Ayurveda.
A box of these treats would be a welcoming gift for a new mama! Get this delicious, powerful product now and get 20% off with coupon code: FIRSTORDER. For more information visit website
Happy milking, Mamas! 

By |November 15th, 2017|General Topics, Mommy, Uncategorized|Comments Off on Fenugreek Bars – Lactation Treats for Nursing Moms

Women Come Together for Peace – OM SHANTI Event

OM SHANTI – Sister Circle of PEACE
When: Sunday, October 22nd, 2-3:30 pm
Where: YogaWorks Playa Vista

We as women come together for peace. We must! We are daughters, mothers, sisters, grandmother, friends – the protectors of Mother Earth.
Please Join Our Community Event at YogaWorks Playa Vista, sponsored by Spirited Woman. This is a special yoga event of peace, wrapped in your OM SHANTI Spirited Woman Prayer Scarf – a symbol of spirit, empowerment, and peace for women worldwide.
I will be leading the group in a Gentle Yoga, Meditation, and Chanting.
Your EVENT TICKET: The OM SHANTI Spirited Woman Prayer Scarf!
Please order your scarf in advance of the event – limited number available at-the-door. Cost: $48.
To sign-up/purchase scarf please call Nancy Mills, Spirited Woman: (805) 698-3555.
A portion of all OM SHANTI scarf sales will be donated to AWBW – so if you can’t make the event you can still buy the scarf!
Your ticket is the OM SHANTI prayer scarf. If you already have OM SHANTI the event is free or buy yours here. We expect this event to sell-out!
A portion of all OM SHANTI scarves will be donated to the fantastic non-profit A Window Between Worlds – so if you can’t make the event you can still buy the scarf!


Join us as we come together to elevate the intention of love and peace in our Community.
~Om Shanti

By |October 4th, 2017|Birth Rights, General Topics, Uncategorized, Yoga|Comments Off on Women Come Together for Peace – OM SHANTI Event


A unique and innovative step-by-step guide for pregnancy yoga sequences from leading Yoga Gurus from Around the World!
LOS ANGELES, Calif., May 10, 2017 –
Bumps in Motion offers a detailed, beautifully illustrated, precise instruction of numerous yoga poses to support you during pregnancy and labor. Accompanying sequences focus on a range of applications, from quick daily practices to poses for common pregnancy ailments. Woven throughout the book, you’ll find resources to help prepare you for an empowered birth. Filled with modifications, and tips, this is an indispensable text for both beginners and advanced practitioners alike.
Bumps in Motion is a unique collaboration from expert Yoga Instructors from across the Globe. This book is the perfect companion for the experienced yoga practitioner, ideal for Pregnancy Yoga Teacher Training. This book is the yoga practitioner’s companion (manual/ handbook), offering practical advice, step-by-step asana sequences, pranayama practices, and meditation techniques, all of which are designed to help new mothers connect more deeply to their experience and prepare for their journey—physically, mentally, and spiritually.
Going beyond physical posture practice, Bumps in Motion also includes guidance on meditation, visualization, use of gemstones, devotional chanting, mantras, mudras, and other tools to inspire and nourish you and your baby. Offering pregnant women and yoga teachers with creative sequences available now on Amazon: Bumps-Motion-Pregnancy-Sequences-Around-ebook/dp/B06Y2DP5YP

This book includes:

Mini sequences for specific trimester challenges: morning sickness, fatigue, anxiety, low-back issues, etc.

Specialty Yoga Sequences using Birth Ball, Chair, Ballet Barre’, and Clubbell!

Modifications that accommodate a pregnant woman’s growing bump

A dedicated section on the pelvic floor

Special breathing techniques for labor that encourage natural childbirth

Suggested Music Playlists are included for each Sequence

With special contributions from:
Foreword by Dr. Elliot Berlin of Berlin Wellness Group (
Tara Lee […]

By |May 2nd, 2017|General Topics, Labor Tools, Yoga|Comments Off on New Book! – BUMPS IN MOTION: PREGNANCY YOGA SEQUENCES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Happy Mama, Happy Baby!

As a pre/post-natal yoga teacher I like to stay abreast of natural remedies that can assist women into a peaceful transition into Motherhood. The process of birth can leave women feeling depleted of energy, blood loss, and general post-partum mood fluctuations.

I like Happy Calm Focused nutritional supplements (HCF) because of its carefully chosen combination of Vitamins and nutrients, which actually help “feed” the brain of a sleep-deprived new mama! The B vitamins help the body to convert food into fuel, which is used to produce energy.

During the post-partum period, hormone level fluctuation a new mother can experience hair loss and brittle nails. B complex vitamins are needed for healthy skin, hair, eyes, and liver. They also help the nervous system function properly, not to mention mild deficiency of B3 can cause fatigue and depression.

What makes HCF unique is that it does NOT contain added niacin! I couldn’t believe that I noticed niacin added into my other supplements, which already contain vitamin B complexes. High doses of niacin can be toxic because B3 already is a nicotinic acid so adding niacin can a bit overdose unless your medical practioner has recommended such a practice.

I am a mother myself with a very busy work and family schedule. HCF works for me and I recommend it to my yoga students, family, and friends.

By |April 9th, 2015|General Topics, Yoga|Comments Off on Happy Mama, Happy Baby!

Modern Day Red Tent – Home Birth Story by TJ

As you can imagine I am surrounded by births and hearing birth stories on a weekly basis.  I thought I should start sharing these amazing and inspiring stories here on my blog as sort of a modern day times, Red Tent.  These stories are meant to inspire, motivate, and educate.  Look for the pearl in every story no matter the outcome.  If you have a story you would like to share please send me a personal email: with the subject like “Modern Day Red Tent Birth Story”.

Let’s start this series with TJ’s Birth Story.  This is the birth of her second baby who also was born at home.  I was her doula for the first birth and because she moved away I was not there for baby number 2 although by the sound of her story, her midwife barely got there on time!  And the story begins…



I had my second baby (another girl – her name is Eloise but we call her Louie) about a year ago. I did have another home birth but couldn’t use MaryLou because we were just too far away. I used Sue Wolcott – a midwife in Glendale.

The birth was so quick; the midwife almost didn’t get here in time! ?My water broke in the early morning hours after I went to the bathroom but I just went back to bed since there were no contractions . Contractions were very mild throughout the day so we just went about our business. I even made my husband, Tyler, go to work because I felt just fine. I did drive with him though so that I would be near him in case things started up more actively.

I hung out in […]

Top 10 Most Important Things to Pack in Your Labor Bag

If you are pregnant and wondering what to bring to the hospital or Birth Center for your upcoming labor & delivery, chances are you have already come across those long lists of what to pack. Sure, the essentials are obvious such as your toiletries, change of clothes, a coming home outfit for the baby…your husband and Birth Partner, duh of course! But, what about a SHORT list of the absolutely most essential things to bring with you that will make a big difference?  I give you a short list of the top 10 most important things to pack in your hospital bag but often get overlooked, so if you are within 4 weeks of your due start packing your bag now.

 Birth Preferences List (Birth Plan) – This is your communications tool about what you prefer for your birth.  Your Birth Plan should be no more than 2 pages long, easy to read, and also include your preferences for baby care (i.e. do you want certain injections, eye ointment?).  Bring three copies with you, which ideally have been signed and agreed by your doctor.  A sample Birth Plan is provided in Posh Push.
 Birth Ball (to aid with labor support) – These are very large rubber balls used for exercise and Pilates. Recommended size for labor is 65 cm.  You want your hips to be above the level of your knees when you sit on it.  You can find an exercise ball at any Sporting Goods store or shop like Target. Please don’t go in asking for a “birth ball” because they will look at you cross-eyed .  Bring this ball with you to the hospital already pumped up and ready to go.

Wear Your Own Labor Gown […]

By |April 9th, 2013|Birth Rights, General Topics, Labor Tools|Comments Off on Top 10 Most Important Things to Pack in Your Labor Bag

Benefits of Yoga for Fertility

Constant stress can negatively affect our health and wellbeing.  For a woman, the consequences of having cortisol and adrenaline constantly pumping through her body impacts her viability to conceive.  These ‘fight or flight’ hormones, in excess, compromise the ability to get and stay pregnant.

Think of it this way, if you are constantly running from the imaginary Saber-tooth tiger your body has the instinct to survive and stay alive.   In the presence of stress, it is as if your hormones as saying, “Quick, close and secure the doors to the precious ovaries.  It is NOT safe to release an egg here.”  Make sense?

Unfortunately, stress is a part of everyday life.  Thus, a woman (and men for that matter) would greatly benefit from the practice of  Yoga.  Yin classes like Prenatal and Restorative Yoga brings a fresh supply of oxygen to the body and also calms the mind to activate the parasympathetic nervous system.  Yoga also allows the mind and body a chance to recover from being overloaded by the ‘flight or flight’ mode and thus enhance the hormones of fertility and conception as well as maintain a healthy pregnancy.

At YogaWorks, we have a full schedule of classes for prenatal yoga, restorative, Iyengar and Hatha yoga, which would be appropriate for women trying to conceive.

By no means do I suggest doing yoga is the one and only tool to assist with fertility, but rather it can be used effectively in concert with other modalities such as acupuncture, herbs, proper nutrition, and sometimes the assistance of fertility medical treatments.  No matter your journey through conception, the benefits of yoga are countless.

I hope to do a series of follow-up blogs hi-lighting specific yoga poses, which are beneficial for […]

By |March 11th, 2013|General Topics|Comments Off on Benefits of Yoga for Fertility

Aromatherapy For Labor & Birth – Natural Pain Relief

Hoping for a more natural birth?  Here is How: A sneak peek into my doula-bag-o-tricks and you’ll find my stash of Aromatherapy.  Yes, not only does the flowery, fruity, and earthy smell mask the creepy smell of hospitals but pure essential oils (EOs) can actually affect a birthing mama mentally, physically, and emotionally without the use of pharmaceuticals.  Woot woot!

Aromatherapy is a method of treatment in which pleasant smells are inhaled thus stimulating the limbic area of the brain, releasing neurochemicals into the bloodstream and promoting relaxation in the body.  The right combination of smells can stimulate the body’s production of endorphins (the body’s own analgesic) and decrease the feeling of pain.

Essential oils are not synthetic but rather are derived from plants and flowers.  Essential oils can help you relax. Take a whiff of Lavender oil and notice how your facial muscles melt like wax and your breathing slows into a calm and rhythmic breathing pattern.

Although a variety of essential oils can be used for labor and birth, my personal doula favorite is Lavender essential oil. Lavender can be put directly onto your skin. It can be used alone (neat) or in combination with other oils. Spearmint or Mint EO scent is good if you are feeling nauseous however it cannot be placed neat on the skin without a carrier oil because it can cause irritation.

Essential oils can be mixed with carrier oil such as vegetable or nut oil (try extra virgin olive oil, jojoba, apricot kernel, wheat germ, sunflower, almond, or avocado) and placed in your bathwater or a diffuser to create a relaxing atmosphere. You can burn your favorite scents using a vaporizer to scent the air or put a few drops […]

By |February 26th, 2013|Doulas, General Topics, Labor Tools|Comments Off on Aromatherapy For Labor & Birth – Natural Pain Relief

Cord Blood Banking: Are We Steeling Babies Blood?

I recently read an awesome article by one of my favorite childbirth blogs called Midwife Thinking’s Blog.  The topic was called “Cord Blood Collection: Confessions of a Vampire-Midwife,” posted February 10, 2011.

It was well-timed since I just received an email from a Representative of Pacificord- Cord Blood Collection.   Funny how they got my name and email? What was most interesting is his offer to give me (as a Doula) a $50 referral fee for every client I sent to them and booked an account.  Wow!  Now, I know this type of thing happens at doctors’ offices but this is the first time, as a doula, I have been approached and been offered CASH for referrals.

I am aware of doctors and hospitals receiving incentives for selling/recommending drugs or childbirth interventions but have never heard of doulas being approached. What happened to the doulas helping to be the Guardians of gentle birthing for moms and babies?  I have to admit, for a quick second I thought, “Hmmm, who do I know that I can refer?”  Then I quickly snapped myself back!  But with such a generous referral incentive you can see how tempting it could be to pass along the Pacificord brochures.

Read The Midwife Thinking’s blog to learn more about the process of cord banking and the affect on baby.  When you learn how much of the baby’s own blood volume is taken (about 1/3)  it makes one really think hard about this topic of cord banking.  The midwife further states, “I am not saying cord blood banking shouldn’t be an available option. All I am suggesting is that parents need adequate information before they make a decision to withdraw a significant amount of their baby’s blood volume. They need to be able […]