Easy Ways to Prepare Your Body for Labor

I’m one of those really crazy, weirdo, crunchy mamas who actually likes giving birth. Sorry, sue me. 😉 Birth is a very natural (obviously) thing to have happen, and I know it’s different for everyone, but I really believe there are some things you can do to have a faster, easier labor.

(And I’m not naive, I know there are instances where nothing like these tips will help- but it’s worth it to try!)

Preparing for Labor

#1- Walking, walking, walking! Walking is one of the best things to do to help your body get ready for labor. After 37 weeks, I incorporated lots of hill/incline walking to help encourage labor.

#2- lots of squats! “Squat 300 times a day, you’re going to give birth quickly.” – Ina May Gaskin. There are lots of different kinds of squats to do- normal, wide, deep. Do what feels good and mix it up! I definitely believe squats get your body ready for labor.

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#3- red raspberry tea/third trimester tea! I didn’t do this with my first birth, and even though I had a very fast labor, I’ve been drinking tea religiously this pregnancy to see if it will help.

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#4- stretching! Stretching feels good on a growing, stretching body, but also helps open up your hips in preparation of your upcoming birth. Check out all the awesome hip opener stretches online!

#5- read & watch positive births! When people want to tell you their “horror birth stories”, just tell them you want to have a positive experience. I watched lots of good homebirths to get my mind ready and to be confidant in my body’s ability of giving birth.

What did you do to help prepare your body for labor?
Sincerely,
Hannah Diane
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Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for the Crunchy Mom

Can you believe Mother’s Day is a week and a half away? Crazy! My husband asked me the other day what I would want for Mother’s Day and I actually had some ideas….since I needed to write them down for him anyway, I’d thought I’d share them here for some other husband’s inspiration! 😉

Gift Ideas for the Crunchy Mama

Books. Crunchy Mamas are all about learning. They love learning new things, and usually like reading for fun, too. Check out her Amazon cart or other list of books she may be wanting. Some of the ones on my list are….
1) Mama Natural’s Week by Week Pregnancy Guide
2) The First Forty Days
3) Magic of Motherhood
4) Long Days of Small Things

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Gardening. If your wife is the gardening type, treat her to a garden day together! Either pick up some plants you know she’s been wanting (blueberry bushes, fruit trees or rose bushes are a good place to start), or a trip to the garden center, and spend the day as a family working in the garden! Some things to help her out with her gardening would be an awesome bonus!
1) A cool gardening kit like this!
2) Cute gloves like these.
3) A fun knee pad like this!

Self-Care. All mommas need to work on self-care! Getting her somethings to encourage her to take care of herself, and watching the kids so she can, is such a great gift! Some self-care ideas would be….
1) A trip to get a massage, or mani/pedi
2) Toxin-free nail polish! Did you know that there are tons of hormone distrupting chemicals in nail polish? Gross. I would absolutely love to get the Crescent Crush or the Pothole Polish colors from Native Polish!
3) Young Living Starter Kit!!! MEN. This is the best gift you could ever give her! The health of your wife & kids is definitely worth it. She will love the diffuser, and trying out all of the 11 oils it comes with! A super awesome BONUS during the month of May is the extra 15mL bottle of Tangerine. It smells devine and she’ll find so many different uses for it! You can order it for her HERE, plus, she’ll get added to an awesome community full of like-minded women who love natural health!
4) Bath bombs– y’all. These scream self-care! Make sure you get your wife some- but make sure the ingredients are actually good for her and not full of yucky chemicals!

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Snacks. Men, women need their snacks- especially chocolate. Whether it’s that time of the month, or pregnancy cravings, your wife will always want a special stash of healthy stuff just.for.her. She’ll love you for it, promise. Some of my favorite are….
1) Lily’s sugar-free chocolate! She would love a bar {or 3!} of these!
2) These Wolfberry Chocolate Bars are so good for her health, and she’ll enjoy them!
3) Any other of her favorites…..

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Cookbooks. Healthy cookbooks can sometimes get pricey, but we women love them! The great thing about this gift is, you’re also treating yourself! 😉 Some great ones would be….
1) Against All Grain
2) Necessary Food 
3) A Better Weigh to Healthy 

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You know the woman in your life. Use these to give you some inspiration, but use this day to make her feel extra special and totally loved. ❤

Sincerely,
Hannah Diane
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22 Week {Pregnancy Update!}

On Sunday, we hit 22 weeks with Baby #2! What?!?! How in the world am I over halfway? It’s crazy how much faster pregnancy seems when chasing after a toddler….I just hope I’m ready for when this crazy boy comes! ❤

22 Week Update

The past week….

I’ve been craving- chocolate milkshakes and ALL THE CARBS. Seriously.

I’ve gained- a total of ~5lbs so far, thank the Lord! I started the pregnancy higher than I wanted, so I’m thankful I’ve kept the weight gain down, and the midwives are pleased, too!

I’m feeling- HUGE! Ha! I’m so much bigger in the belly than I was with Caleb. Guess that comes with having 2 in 2 years.

I’m looking forward to- the splash pad opening in a month. I know….not baby related. But it’s SO hot and humid but still a little too chilly to swim.

I’m wearing- maternity clothes alllllllll the way. Except dresses- the dress above is a regular dress and I can still wear a few non-maternity tops. But yeah….bring on the stretchy pants!

Favorite snack this week- carbs. Ha! Protein bars are my go-to, but trying to incorporate some carrots & hummus or apples & PB.

Sincerely,
Hannah Diane
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Mama’s Sanity {Unicorn Roller}

Emotions. Feelings. We, as women, can have a lot of them all at once. The two best things that help me during crazy times? More Jesus time and lots of oils. ❤

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I always start with a drop or two of Stress Away on my wrist and Caleb’s little wrists. He loves getting oils put on him! He smells it and says, “Mmmm!”. If Caleb will play nicely (inside or out), I’ll settle down with my Bible and pray some and seek the Lord.

My other secret weapon? The unicorn roller blend! Oh…my….y’all. It’s amazing!! I mixed mine up in an old oil bottle and put a roller top on it, then decorated it with washi tape. Caleb also likes this blend, but I try to keep it to myself! 😉

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You have got to give it a try….and let me know if you do! ❤

Interested in oils, but don’t know how to begin? Start here. If you don’t have Young Living’s Seed to Seal guaranteed oils (perfect for little bodies), but want some, click this link to get started! You’ll get a fun welcome package in the mail from me!

Oh, and did I mention now through January 31, you’ll also get the coveted Peace & Calming?!? #youneedsome #naptime #nuffsaid

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Sincerely,
Hannah Diane
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Top 5 Posts of 2016

Okay, y’all…I know we’re almost done with January (where has the time gone?!?), but here are the top 5 posts of 2016 for Through the Lens!

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Even though it’s one of my oldest posts, this post on how to use essential oils with horses is one of my most popular!

4) Detox Naturally

These 3 Ways to Naturally Detox {even while pregnant} helped keep me feeling good through my pregnancy!

 

3) wdding-reception

My post on How to Have a Simple, Tasteful & Inexpensive Wedding Reception was a favorite of mine to do. I loved putting our reception together and then the post gave me all the feels. ❤

2) Strawberry Lemonade

This Good Girl Moonshine is STILL our favorite…we make it weekly!

1) Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Muffins

These Healthy Chocolate Muffins were #1 on the list again for this year! I think I’m going to have to make them again soon….

Sincerely,
Hannah Diane
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Speedy Peppermint Brownies

Y’all, just like fall means everything pumpkin, to me, winter time means everything peppermint! And even though winter doesn’t start for a few more weeks, it’s December now, so we can pretend, right?

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I love me a good, warm, chewy brownie. Brownies are so easy to whip up in a hurry, so it’s my favorite go-to thing to make for a pitch-in or party! And during the winter….I have to make them peppermint!

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Speedy Peppermint Brownies

Ingredients:
2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cup flour (I’ll even add some whole wheat and no one notices)
1/2 cup cacao powder (if you use regular cocoa powder, scale back some of the sugar)
1 tsp. salt
5 eggs
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp vanilla
5-10 drops of Young Living’s Peppermint Vitality oil
1 cup dark chocolate chips

Recipe:
In mixing bowl, combine first 8 ingredients & beat until smooth. Pour into greased 13×9 baking pan. Sprinkle chocolate chips (and Christmas sprinkles if desired!) over the top. Bale at 350 for 30 minutes or toothpick comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10-15 mins and enjoy!

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See how quick and easy that was? What’s your favorite dessert to make during the holidays?

Sincerely,
Hannah Diane
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Milk Supply Support

I am still nursing my baby. He’s over one now and I’d love to nurse him until two or a little longer if he wants to. But, when I started the 21 Day Fix and portioning my food (and cutting back on fats), it seemed my milk supply dropped some. Because he is over one and eating food,  and I really am ready to lose the rest of this weight, I decided to keep with the portion containers and just do some things to naturally help support my milk supply.

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Besides putting a teaspoon of coconut oil in my morning Shakeology, I’ve been doing two things that have really helped my supply a ton! And I notice the increase almost immediately.

Drinking Mother’s Milk Tea

I get this organic Mother’s Milk Tea from my local Wal-Mart and it definitely works! I brew a bag of the MMT and a Chai blend together, with just a little bit of honey. I drink this mid-afternoon. It’s a good reminder to sit for a minute, read a few pages in a book and just relax. Sometimes it’s the only quiet time I have in a day!

Apply 2-4 drops of Fennel Oil

I’ve known for a long time that Fennel helps with milk supply (it’s also in the MMT), but because I had such a large supply early on with Caleb, I never needed to use it. Every morning after my shower, and also right before bed, part of my oily routine now is to apply 2-4 drops of Fennel oil on my chest. If I don’t feel like my supply is very low, I just do one drop for each side, applied topically. But if Caleb’s nursed longer or acted hungry after nursing, I’d apply 2 drops each side and definitely notice an increase quickly.

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Both of these things are inexpensive and so easy to do, just to give my supply a little help. Have you had to do anything to increase your supply? What have you done?

Sincerely,
Hannah Diane
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