Wednesday, July 23, 2014

New Honeybee Mama Sponsor and Giveaway!

It's time for another Honeybee Mama Sponsor and Giveaway!

I'm pleased to announce this week's newest Honeybee Mama Sponsor, Shop Good: Purveyors of Generosity. I have known the owners since college and they are dear friends and all around AMAZING people. Here's more about their story:

Shop Good offers clothing and gifts with quality and story for those with more thoughtful style. A portion of every sale supports a deserving effort to strengthen communities and meet real needs both here in Oklahoma City and around the world. It's just our way to give back to those who are working hard to make life healthier and happier - for all.
Our comfortable, sustainable, American-made tee shirts are all designed and screen printed by hand in house, including our bestselling "Sun's Out Guns Out" toddler tank. Show off those fiercely adorable mini-muscles this Summer! And support a great cause - "Sun's Out Guns Out" sales support ReMerge, a local non-profit that offers rehabilitation and reintegration for mothers and pregnant women in Oklahoma County who are facing prison time. 



Enter to win your "Sun's Out Guns Out" kids tank through the rafflecopter link below!



Don't forget to "like" Honeybee Mama and Shop Good on Facebook and share, share, share! Remember, you can share on Facebook and tweet every day about the giveaway to up your chances of winning!

Friday, July 18, 2014

{my moment}

A moment captured from the week that captured my heart.
A Friday ritual inspired by Soulemama.


That's what a child's Summer should look like, if you ask me. 
Happy 7th Birthday, sweet Alec Michael!

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your moment in your comments!

Happy Weekend, Lovies!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Relaxation for a Better Birth

In my Five Steps to a Better Birth, I talk about key things to focus on in pregnancy to ensure your birth experience is safer, smoother and more satisfying. Previously, I listed these five steps as: Balanced Nutrition During Pregnancy, Exercise, Childbirth Education and BirthPlan, Focus on Fetal Positioning and Perineal Massage.

I am now revamping these five steps, to include the emphasis to Practice Relaxation during pregnancy. While perineal massage is still important, I will now include it in the list of suggested exercises. Now, let's talk about why you need practice relaxing!

The Importance of Relaxation in Labor



If you do nothing else to prepare for your birth experience, practice relaxation. Here’s the thing: your body already knows how to give birth. You have all the mechanics and hormones needed to birth your baby. If you fully relax and pay attention to what’s going on in your body, nature will take over and do what needs to be done to give birth!

To understand why relaxation is important, it’s helpful to take a good look at the hormones that make childbirth possible and how they function. I go into much more detail about this in my post about Love and Labor Hormones. Basically the hormones necessary for causing and progressing labor are oxytocin and endorphins. These hormones are at their peak when the mother feels safe, calm, relaxed, supported and happy. 

On the other hand, when the laboring mother is fearful, anxious, stressed, or feels unsafe or unsupported, her body will flood with adrenaline and catecholamines, which trigger the body's "fight or flight" mechanisms. This sends blood flow to the extremities and causes muscles to tense, which makes labor more painful and actually slows or shuts down the birthing process. This creates a need for interventions and can intensify, if not cause, complications and trauma.

Helpful Ways to Practice Relaxation for Labor:
  • Prenatal Yoga
  • Guided Relaxation
  • Prayer and Meditation
  • Hypnosis for Birth
  • Deep Breathing   

It’s important to practice relaxation every single day. Whatever method makes sense to you is fine; what is important is that you are able to relax every muscle in your body. For some, lying on a bed with comfortable pillows, listening to soft music with dim lights and candles burning is an easy way to relax. In this state, you or your partner can then focus on relaxing “top to bottom,” by first relaxing your forehead, then your jaw, then your neck muscles and shoulder muscles, etc. until you get all the way down to relaxing your toes. Once you are familiar with how it feels to be completely relaxed and to maintain that state for 20-30 minutes daily, it will be easier for you to return to that state during the intensity of labor.
      
Remember, your relaxation doesn’t have to look like anyone else’s. What makes sense to you may not make sense to others. Experiment with some different ways to relax, all the while focusing on being limp, loose, soft and releasing tension in every muscle of your body.
      
Practicing Mindfulness in Relaxation

Whenever you practice relaxation, be mindful and aware of what is going on in your body and what you are feeling. Then think about and appreciate the purpose of each sensation. For example, when you feel your stomach rumbling, you can feel the sensations, and recognize and appreciate this is your body’s way of telling you it needs nourishment. The sensations you feel have a purpose and they are positive.
      
This is an extremely helpful tool for appreciating the intensity of labor. There is pain in labor; there’s no getting around that. Relaxing and stimulating the hormones that cause enjoyable sensations during labor can reduce unnecessary pain in labor. But there are still very intense sensations that we can describe as “Pain with a Purpose.” When you feel contractions, focus on how it feels and meditate on the fact that these sensations are your body working in an amazing and beautiful way to bring your baby into the world!


Affirmations for Labor and Birth

Reading, memorizing, reciting positive birth affirmations is a fantastic way of practicing mindfulness and encouraging yourself to yield to the birth process. You may even want to print some up and post them in your birthing room. These can be anything from scripture or poetry, or encouraging words others have spoken over you. Here are a few you might consider:

“My body was designed to give birth.”
“Birth is safe for me and my baby.”
“Each wave of labor brings me closer to holding my baby in my arms.”
“My baby is strong and healthy.”
“I trust my body.”
“My belly is full of light and love.”
“I am a strong and capable woman.”
“I have patience.”
“My body is soft, wide and open.”
“My cervix is blooming and opening like a flower.”
“I am at peace with the world.”
“There is no need for us to hurry.”
“I have an open heart.”
“I am strong and calm and beautiful.”
“Birth is a wonderful, safe experience.”


What helped you during labor? Share your tools and tricks for relaxation in the comments!


Join the Honeybee Mama Hive Now 
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Thursday, July 10, 2014

New Honeybee Mama Sponsor and GIVEAWAY!

Meet my newest Honeybee Mama Sponsor: cr2f!

cr2f is owned by Carrie Richardson Fry, a dear friend I've known since high school. Born and raised in Tulsa, Carrie now lives with her husband, Matt, and beautiful daughter, Cleona. Here's what she says about her business: 

it all started because I needed art on my walls.

I am a sucker for fun colors. I have collected little pieces of art from all over the place, I create paintings from pictures I take and have even been known to frame something not typically framed (like the side of a six pack holder or a postcard advertisement). As I began decorating my home I just keep seeing opportunities to commemorate things that were important to me--my home state of Oklahoma, my husband's home state of Georgia and my daughter's home state of North Carolina. Next came our Italy trip and Italian phrases that will always hold special meaning for us (one is "allora"). I wanted art for my daughter's room, gifts for my friends....and cr2f was made.

I'm happy to custom make a piece for you! I want the artwork in your home to be meaningful and important AND beautiful!

Here are some of her gorgeous creations:





Giveaway! 

Carrie is giving away one 8.5x11 print from either the State Art, Nursery/Kids or Words section of her etsy shop. When the winner is announced, you'll be able to choose which one you want! Also, when you enter the giveaway you'll be given a special discount code to use for FREE SHIPPING from now until August first!

See below to enter the giveaway and GOOD LUCK!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Summer Cocktails and Mocktails

Everybody loves a cocktail. In the Summer, I love something cold, light and refreshing and so do my kids! If you're pregnant or a kid or are avoiding alcohol for any other reason, that doesn't mean you have to miss out on a special treat. Today, I've got three Summer Spritzers that can be alcoholic or non-alcoholic so your kids or anyone who doesn't want alcohol can still join in the fun!

Check out my segment on Tulsa Live where I show how to make them, and see the recipes below! I added some of my doTERRA CPTG Essential Oils to keep things fresh and delicious too!


Here are the recipes. Feel free to tweak however you desire!

1. Watermelon Fizz

Cocktail:

1oz Dry Gin
2oz Watermelon Juice
2oz Ginger Ale
splash of fresh lime juice
1 drop Lime CPTG essential oil

*Make it fancy with frozen watermelon chunks or ice cubes made of watermelon juice!

Mocktail:

Same as above, minus the gin!


2. Mommy's Sparkling Lemonade

Cocktail:

1oz White Rum
2oz Lemonade
2oz Lemon/Lime soda or other spritzer
splash fresh lemon juice
1 drop Lemon CPTG essential oil

*Make it fancy with frozen lemon rings or ice cubes made of lemonade!

Mocktail:

Same as above, minus the rum!


3. Orange Margarita Spritzer

Cocktail:

1oz Tequila
1/2oz Triple Sec
2oz Orange Juice
2oz Spritzer or Lemon/Lime Soda
splash of lime juice
1 drop Wild Orange CPTG essential oil

Mocktail:

Same as above, minus the tequila and triple sec!


Friday, July 4, 2014

{my moment}

A moment captured from the week that captured my heart.
A Friday ritual inspired by Soulemama.


Morning meeting. One in a robe, one sitting next to Dad's Pabst from last night, and the other filling a water balloon...at about 7:15 AM.

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your moment in your comment.

Happy Weekend, Lovies!

Monday, June 30, 2014

Summer in T-Town

It has been a whirlwind of a Summer. Since we are a blended family, our kids have been gone at the other parents' houses for a good chunk of it, but we've still been able to squeeze in a lot of fun.

What would Summer be without running through the sprinkler?



We've been hitting up Story Time and Food Trucks at Guthrie Green



My kids love photobombing and bunny ears, what can I say?


We've rocked out with Tulsa Music Festival.


We love the FREE Summer Movies!


And we even have had some amazing festivals in Broken Arrow like Summer Solstice!





Are you surviving Summer in Oklahoma? What have you been up to?