Childbirth, Uncategorized

Kudos to The Birth Hour

image.jpgI’m addicted.

Stuck on you.

In love.

In awe.

Give me more.

I’m talking to you The Birth Hour. A podcast featuring badass women sharing their awe-inspiring birth stories. Created by mama-writer-creator extraordinaire, Bryn Huntpalmer, this series of audible goodness has made me relish traffic because I can soak in these fascinating tales of natural birth, medicated birth, c-sections, home birth, acrobatic birth (just kidding), water birth, and beyond.

Bryn created an open forum for women to verbally flow through their raw, often humorous, and deeply emotional stories, helping to connect the sisterhood of mothers and remind us that we are not alone in our fears, triumphs, (and embarrassing moments!)

The title of each episode provides a description of the type of birth you will hear about in the episode.

If you’re pregnant, I recommend seeking out the episodes that describe the type of birth you want to have, envisioning yourself absorbing the positive aspects of that story, making it your own.

If you’re trying to heal hurts from a past childbirth experience, listen to the episodes that are similar to the birth you had, connecting you to these women and possibly hearing strategies for how they moved through any attached physical or emotional challenges.

And if you’re just a women interested in the magnificence of birth (and interested in being entertained!) you’ll love this podcast.

Check-idy check it out. 


How I Make Money as a Stay-At-Home-Mom

Where I did 90% of my work that first year. It’s all about the glider chair.

I felt like a melancholy feather before motherhood awakened my passions. I had floated through various jobs and careers, kind of liking some of them, but never feeling that spark or “flow” the lucky amongst us (unintentionally?) brag about.

It wasn’t motherhood itself that became my full passion, but it ignited the discovery.

I owned a home organizing business before and during my pregnancy, and had to hire other women to take on my clients when my belly became a barrier between myself, and all the stuff I had to move around on the job. While my cut of their organizing sessions was decent, it wasn’t enough to adequately supplement my husband’s booming teaching income.

Read more on Huff Post!

Mind-Body-Spirit, Self Love, Uncategorized

How Do We Step Into Our Intentions?

The intentions set for a new year have a bad reputation for only lasting through January. But what if we change the conversation? What if we shift those dismal expectations?

What if we decided the beautiful hopes and commitments we set for another trip around the sun will make a lasting and profound change in our life, persisting as long as we want it/them to.

What if.

One way I propose we do this is by living each day like a mini life.

When we hold the mind set that each day is one small lifetime, we dive deeper in, dedicating ourselves to relishing the moments, and how our (new) positive intentions paint those moments.

It also takes the pressure off. When we know tomorrow is a new lifetime, we release the need to take any perceived failures or disappoints from this life into the next. Recommit to your intentions at the beginning of each mini lifetime and celebrate their manifestations like major “lifetime” achievements.

How lovely that we can decide to be reborn every day. We can start every day afresh and light.

This mindset also serves to dissolve the monotony that can suck the zest out of life, and infuses fresh excitement into our favorable changes that require daily devotion.

Even if we engage in similar activities each day, we can bring new layers of perception to our intentions and motivations in each mini life.

This freshens up familiar activities, allowing us to mine new insights, ways of doing, and solutions from the old.

At the end of each mini lifetime, let’s honor it as we would the closing of a full life. It doesn’t need to hold sadness, because after each lifetime comes another. A fresh chance to start anew.

A new shade of enthusiasm and joy will color our lives when each day is honored as sacred.

For my readers who are parents, or soon-to-be parents, let’s marinate on these ideas to see how we can translate them into inspiring teachings for our children.

Each and every one of us deserves the deep satisfaction that comes with seeing our resolutions, intentions, plans, promises, (or whatever we feel like calling them!) come to fruition and fill our life with ever-expanding joy.

Sending you glowing love and gratitude! 

And in other news…

Feel free to email me at to explore this topic further.

As a yummy bonus, here is a short and sweet relaxation recording for you. 

This is straight outta a newsletter I plan to send out weekly- exploring the challenges, beauty, and questions living in the mind-body-spirit continuum, conscious parenting, blissful birthing, and many other layers of this wonderful journey we call life.

If you’re connecting to these words, you can subscribe here, Feng Shui Mommy Newsletter

For more relaxation recordings go here- Your Serene Life

For daily (short) thoughts and inspirations, go here- Feng Shui Mommy Facebook page

And, if you’re pregnant, please oh please check this out 🙂 Feng Shui Mommy Online Childbirth Course


Put the Phone Down! (Said my brain to my hand.)

Baby see, baby do.

I’m an unintentional digi-addict who preaches what I do not practice.

“Only one hour of screen time,” I righteously recite to my son, as I scroll through my email looking for something new and exciting.

I sometimes get so absorbed in this vortex it takes my eyes a few moments to adjust to reality when I eventually break away from the scrolling staring-contest.

I’ve been nursing my son, while tapping though feed updates on some site or another, to look down to see his sweet little eyes staring up at me.

“Holy bad-mothering! I’m staring at a screen while tiny windows into a beautiful Universe are looking up at me.” (Insert extreme mother-guilt here.)

I need to slow my roll (or scroll.)

A compulsion to find the next exciting revelation on our social media feed, email, or beyond has become rampant in our society. And I’m not on a soap box, because I’m one of the worst perps.

But the buck (screen) stops here.

I’m claiming my compulsion and attempting to do something about it.

I found my mom’s old-school stop watch (because using the timer on my iPhone is part of the machine I’m trying to avoid) and will start setting a daily timer for one hour, starting today, only allowing myself to tap-scroll-stare on my laptop until the timer beep-bop-boops. (I’m adding the caveat that my writing is not included in this one hour.)

I’m also going to delete the social media apps on my phone. (Gasp!) I’ll let you know if I end up reloading them in my sleep. Compulsions (addictions) are hard to break.

I have a visceral need to fully immerse myself in my 3D reality. I suppose “fully” isn’t the appropriate words because I will still be dipping my toes in the digital waters daily, but at least I won’t be drowning in them.

Here goes something!

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Mom Humor, Uncategorized

25 Things I Tell My Toddler That I Should Be Telling Myself

I made it to OZ! (At least digitally.)

Originally published on Babble


I’m quick with the requests (demands) for my toddler, but not so quick to follow my own seemingly wise words. What if those words were translated by my “good angel” into advice that helped me curb a few of my less-than-stellar habits?

I’m giving that good angel (who is more likely an opinionated fairy) a moment to shine and respond to all the chitchat I’m consistently doling out to my son.


1. Only one cup of juice.
Only one cup of wine.

2. Sugar and fried foods will make you tired.
Sugar and fried foods will make you tired, cranky, puffy, lazy, and hungry.

Read more at Mamamia!

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Childbirth, Pregnancy, Uncategorized

10 Ways to Stop Birth Shaming

IMG_1349“If you don’t let us give you Pitocin, your baby could die.”

Her doctor said it with complete finality, but there was no medical evidence to back up his claim, as the midwife in the room attested to.

The doctor was on his fifth delivery of the day and was overheard telling a nurse he was ready to go home — and was playing golf later that day.

I’m a doula, and my client who shared this story with me, ended up having a C-section she feels she was pressured into.

Shame, which has sidled its way into the ingredients of our culture, commonly mixes into childbirth. Women are constantly being pushed to accept unnecessary interventions they’re not comfortable with, just to suit the needs of those that have a hand (often literally) in their birth experience.

There are of course beautiful exceptions to this rule in the form of doctors and midwives who put their clients’ needs first and only suggest intervention if it is medically needed or requested by the birthing woman. In fact, that needs to be the rule.

Read more on Babble

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Childbirth, Pregnancy, Uncategorized

Birth Oasis Basics

Look! I’m wearing the one-size-fits all gown. Do as I say, not as I do 😉

Sterile. Stiff. Bright. Harsh. Stressed. Cold. Loud.


Intimate. Soft. Glowing. Gentle. Calm. Comfortable. Quiet. Aromatic (in the most pleasant sense of the word).

Which list do you choose? The second? Me too.

Wouldn’t the characteristics of that second list make for a deeply nurturing birth environment?

Not surprisingly, a nurturing birth environment often equals a more gentle and comfortable birth.

Whether you’re having a home or hospital birth, these tips will help you manifest the birthing oasis of your (sometimes strange) pregnancy dreams:

  1. Low Lighting. Harsh overhead lighting sucks the positive energy out of a space. Opt for a few well placed lamps giving off subtle glows.
  2. Essential Oils. Choose your favorite essential oil/s and dab it on your pulse points, in your birthing tub, or essential oil diffuser. The diffuser is my favorite option as it gently disperses the scent throughout the room providing the calming, or stimulating, effect to everyone in the space. My favorites are lavender (calm) and peppermint (energizing- best for the last phase of labor.)
  3. Comfortable Temperatures. Adjust the thermostat as needed, or have a space heater and fan on hand to regulate your temperature, that will likely be in constant flux.
  4. Soft Materials. Ensure the materials on your birthing bed and body are soft and nurturing. You do not have to succumb to the one-size-fits-all hospital gowns (as lovely as they are.)
  5. Soft Voices. Place a ‘Quiet Please’ sign on your birthing room door and have your birthing companion remind your other supporters to speak in soft, calm, and positive tones.
  6. Favorite Colors. If you end up being an “eyes open” birth-er, you’ll want positive images and colors to use as your focal points. Paint your toes in your favorite color, ask your birth companions to wear this color, and bring in one or two peaceful images or items to set in your view line.
  7. Soothing Melodies. The murmurs of others, or the (sometimes traumatic) bustle of a hospital can be distracting. Have a portable speaker playing calming music or birthing specific relaxation recordings- or pop on your headphones to completely cancel out unwanted noise.
  8. Nom Noms. Have light, delicious, and nutritious snacks on hand for yourself and others. And water. Drink so much water. Water. Water. Water.
  9. A Higher Power. Invite a higher power (whatever that means to you) to enter the space and spiritually guide and support you through all phases of birth.
  10. What Makes You Feel Good? Meditate on that question and fill your birthing oasis with the answers.

The Gist- Make sure all six of your senses are positively supported in your birthing space.

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10 Reasons Why People Who Love The Beach Make The BEST Spouses

IMG_3679If they love the sand, salt, surf and sunscreen, they’re a keeper. 

Having sand in your bed is a rare form of torture. But having a happy, glowing, sexy creature spreading the sand makes it all worth it.

I like the beach. If I lived in the Caribbean, that “like” would be upgraded to a “love.” I don’t live in the Caribbean; I live in California where the water is cold and the beach is often windy, so I like it. But my husband lives for it, dreams of it, and straight up loves it. Our marriage is better because of it.

To take a nugget from the surfer vernacular, people who love the beach make rad spouses, and here’s why.

Read more on YourTango!

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Mind-Body-Spirit, Uncategorized

5 Fun Mind Games

photo-1420745981456-b95fe23f5753I play mind games with my Hypnotherapy clients- but they’re willing players. Often, the best way to melt away the mental (and physical and spiritual) gunk is to have some fun with the barrage of thoughts, emotions, and sensations wrecking havoc in the whole-being.

Here’s how we play:

  1. We play nice. We stop labeling all the negativity as bad and just notice it. When we remove the resistance and name-calling of our inner darkness, it loses its power and may even dissolve into unexpected light.
  2. We make believe. If we don’t like the movie we’re living in we create a new one. This movie can be fantasy, sci-fi, adventure, comedy, a poignant drama- or maybe all of that mixed together. The movie is whatever we want. We close our eyes and play it on repeat in our mind until we believe.
  3. We take our time. If we stumble into a (real or imagined) place, person, or situation that makes us feel wonderful (and is safe) we stay there for awhile and relish in the positivity without worrying about needing to tend to others. Many of us spend most of our time worrying about other people- taking a few (or many) moments to focus solely on our own needs will make our giving so much richer.
  4. We don’t have any rules. The possibilities are endless in the space of mind games. We go where we want, explore as deeply as we want, talk how we want, move how we want, cry if we want, and generally do whatever feels right
  5. We don’t care if we win. These games are all about the cliche, “It’s the journey, not the destination.” We’re not trying to reach a finish line, we’re savoring the exploration of our unique paths and creating space for positive expansion along the way.

Hey friend, go play!

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Daily Dose of Words

Mud? Or so much more?

Hey Feng Shui Mommy family!

I’ve settled on a New Year’s resolution a little late in the game- I’m going (to try) to infuse a little piece of writing for this blog, and this blog only, every day. (Yes, I know “there is no try, only do.”) But I’m a mom, so I’ll (try) do my best.

I’ve been posting excerpts from pieces I’ve written for places other than here, which is fun, but I’m feeling a need for some “Feng Shui Mommy exclusive” material. And I get to play with words and punctuation without anyone editing me 🙂 And I can write fun faces!

Each post will have a theme I’m knowledgable about, or at least claim to be knowledgable about- mommying, being hitched to a half Aussie surfer bloke, mind play (hypnosis), writing, me trying unsuccessfully at mommying, birthing, hippie dippy spiritual goodies, pregnancy, pop culture?, random thoughts, and weird stuff my kid says. I’m also open to suggestions. And I’ll keep it short and saucy, maybe sassy.

Threaded through all of it (because a good blog needs a solid theme right?) will be mindfulness and kind humor.

Thank YOU for reading this, and because I would like our cozy little family to grow (so we can all get more presents during the holidays) I would be much obliged if you recommended this blog to other humans (or animals) you think would enjoy and/or benefit- hopefully both.

Sending you a big juicy cosmic kiss!

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Mom Humor, Uncategorized

7 Things Giving Birth Taught Me About Having Sex With My Hubby

IMG_5627New moms: This one’s for you.

I could feel the texture of his tongue moving against mine. The urges were primal, urgent, and lovely. And then I woke up, flustered and seeking.

I was six months pregnant and the dreams dipped in juicy sex were coming on strong. The intimacy and release of sex secretly filled my mind more than the upcoming birth of my child. I wondered what the sweet lady at the grocery store, who always asked how I was feeling, would’ve said if I told her I had an electric sexual energy coursing through me; that I craved the moment my partner would return home, and I could close the blinds.

My journal entries were salacious. My girlfriends assured me that this bloom of sexuality would wilt as soon as I became a mother. As soon as my breasts were used for nourishment versus arousal. As soon as my vagina was opened to full capacity. As soon as sleep became the subject of my fantasies.

They were wrong. Here’s what giving birth taught me about sex.

Read more on YourTango!


Writing Is My Soul Candy.

photo-1429032021766-c6a53949594fThe period at the end of the first sentence is a sweet drop of honey water on my creative spirit.

The warm liquid pours down my being, as the letters tick out of my fingers, being woven into words.

The words synchronize—releasing my fluidity—freeing my mind.

When the mental stagnation melts away, my spirit animal opens her sleepy foxy eyes and flicks her tail in sync with my rhythm.

She begins to dance, feeling her skin tingle as the beat picks up.

A call goes out to her soul group to join her in flowing into the throbbing inspiration.

She moves with different companions—asking them secret questions, devouring bites of their wisdom.

Slinking from one dancing partner to the next, she travels further down the trail.

Read more on elephant journal.


I Gave Up Coffee For a Month

I committed a mega-mom-atrocity and gave up coffee for one month.

Giving up my morning fix of caffeine, mixed with creamy sweetness, made me realize I need a minor vice to methodically dip into to avoid drowning in juicier vices.

I abandoned coffee for a month because I needed to know I was capable of doing it.

I had been drinking one cup of coffee every day for nine years when I began waking up at 2:00 a.m. with mental cold sweats and the word “addiction” floating in my mind. I like coffee, but I like control more, so I decided I would will myself to give it up — for 30 days.

Cold turkey was my modus operandi, and it made me a cranky serial curser. Everything enraged me my first coffee-less week, and I had a pounding headache so powerful I was convinced my eye balls might pop out of my head.

My mental cold sweats over addiction turned in to actual cold sweats as my body released its final reserves of caffeine.

Read more on Huff Post!


7 Creative Games for Screentime

IMG_6252I rely on screentime to make an income. I’m a (trying to) work at home mom — if I don’t throw some Netflix into my son’s day my bank account would be crying. (Work calls coupled with the background of a small child yelling that they have poop on their hand don’t go well.)

Because I’m not immune to the mom-guilt everyone keeps telling me is pointless, I made up “learning games” to go with the shows my son watches, to slough away a bit of the guilt. And some of them are so fun I shirk work to watch a show with him.

Most of my screentime remorse came from the zombie-fying effect of a television. My lively tot used to turn into a hunched-over glassy-eyed statue whenever a screen was glowing. He now becomes animated, gathering his toys and art supplies as he preps for a show or movie.

And I grab my camera phone (can I call my iPhone a camera phone?) to take delicious videos of my son mimicking Big Bird.

Read more on Huff Post!


Secretly Healthy Gingerbread Muffins

IMG_6573(I know we’re past Christmas- but these are still good!)

I feel a bit guilty during the holidays, when I abandon the lower portion of the food pyramid in favor of the delicious top portion — I’m talking to you butter and sugar. To semi-assuage my guilt I’ve pulled together a group of healthy ingredients that meld themselves into a delicious holiday treat when put under some heat.

(And, they keep you regular, which is a benefit that cannot be under-emphasized during the holidays.)

2 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup plain low-fat yogurt
2 eggs
1/2 cup molasses
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons ground flax seed
2 ripe bananas
Optional: 4 teaspoons chia seeds (if you want to amp up the fiber, throw in some extra seeds)
Optional: 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (extra fiber y’all)

Read more on Babble!

Mom Humor, Uncategorized

25 Thing I Tell My Toddler (That I Should Be Telling Myself)

I’m not sure if this photo relates- but I wanted to post it.

I’m quick with the requests (demands) for my toddler, but not so quick to follow my own seemingly wise words. What if those words were translated by my “good angel” into advice that helped me curb a few of my less-than-stellar habits?

I’m giving that good angel (who is more likely an opinionated fairy) a moment to shine and respond to all the chitchat I’m consistently doling out to my son.

1. Only one cup of juice.

Only one cup of wine.

2. Sugar and fried foods will make you tired.

Sugar and fried foods will make you tired, cranky, puffy, lazy, and hungry.

3. Clean up before you move to another activity.

Close your 15 browser windows before you open a new one to browse Amazon.

Read more on Babble!


I Don’t Feel Like an Adult

IMG_5871I usually look around for an adult when my son is misbehaving.

It’s like I’m the babysitter waiting for the sage parents to come home and properly parent.

Then, I could go home and be properly parented by my adults.

I thought having a child would be my prerequisite for feeling like an adult.

“When I have a child, I will feel like an adult.”

But I didn’t. I don’t.

Where are the omnipresent wisdom, the pantsuits, the financial security, maturity, self-confidence, autonomy, clear decision-making, practicality, belief that I know what the heck I’m talking about… and cocktail parties? Where have all the cocktail parties gone?

Read more on Huff Post!