Mother’s Day Giveaway! Baby Carrier, Nursing Cover, Car Seat Canopy, and Nursing Pillow!

Hey there, mama!

Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and I felt like giving away freebies to the lovely moms who follow my work! Here are the goodies you can win by entering this month’s giveaway. Good luck!

Step 1: Sign up for my newsletter, and get your glow back with my free 5-day eCourse based on my popular program, Remineralize Your Body Now. The eCourse will be sent to you within 24 hours of signing up for the newsletter. Be sure to use same address as the one you’ll be entering below! Already signed up for my newsletter? Go straight to step 2!

Step 2: Once you’ve completed Step 1, enter any of the giveaways below. You can pick a few, or all of them! US address only, please.

Giveaway #1: A baby carrier from SevenSlings.com

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway #2: A nursing cover from UdderCovers.com udder a Rafflecopter giveaway

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The Nourished Village Interviews – Listen For Free!

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Are you tired of being the mom who “does it all?” Do you long for a Village to help you out, listen when things are tough, and cheer for you every step of the way? 

Find out more HERE.

In the Nourished Village, I personally interview experts in their fields to bring knowledge and fun to our days. Because we’re all busy, all interviews are transcribed if you prefer to read rather than listen to them!

This page will be regularly updated with the newest interviews. Some of them are also available to you at no cost below. Enjoy!

Interview #1: Children & The Importance of Quiet Time

What is it about? In our hectic lives, it is important for children to slow down and spend a little time without crammed activities, rushing to classes, and more. Adults will enjoy it too! In this interview, early childhood educator Mary St Martin shares what she has learned from decades of working with children. Why do quiet time? How do you convince your exuberant child from being on his own, and most importantly, enjoy it too? And what exactly do you do during quiet time?

You can listen to this interview by joining The Nourished Village.

 

Interview #2: Feng Shui for a Peaceful Home With Kids & Romance With Your Partner

What is it vanessa_stewartabout? Being a mom is a very rewarding experience on many levels, but it’s also often a big source of stress. Feng Shui, and our expert Vanessa Stewart, can help with that! In this interview, we learn about the big no-nos that get in the way of harmony in the house, which colors to use for maximum impact, what to do with your children’s rooms, including furniture orientation, and what to do in your bedroom to promote romance with your partner (or can sometimes feel neglected when kids come into the picture!)

You can listen to this interview by joining The Nourished Village.

 

Interview #3: Children & The Importance of Imagination

What is it about? Children are at their imaginative peak between ages 2 and 5. This is a very important period of their life, and it will have a big impact on the rest of their lives. In this interview, I talked with early childhood educator Mary Saint Martin on the importance of imagination, what we can do to encourage it, the activities that are detrimental to the development of imagination and can even stunt it, and much more. A wonderful, very informative interview!

You can listen to this interview by joining The Nourished Village, or at no cost HERE.

 

Interview #4: Essential Oils for Moms & Their Families

aishaWhat is it about? Essential oils can be a powerful tools for moms, helping them and their families be stronger, calmer, and happier. But how? In this interview with expert Aisha Harley, we cover essential oils and what they are, how to use them safely during pregnancy, breastfeeding, and infancy (and which ones to use for various ailments), which oils not to use, what essential oil is an amazing multi-purpose wonder (aka The Swiss Army Knife of essential oils), which oils to use to for a bullet proof immune system, and more!

You can listen to this interview by joining The Nourished Village, or at no cost HERE.

Apple Pie Spice Kombucha Floats Recipe

Here in the US, Spring is upon us. All of a sudden, hot desserts don’t seem so appealing, but a cold scoop of ice cream becomes just what we need to get through the day. And why not? Ice cream is such a nourishing food when made from quality ingredients. With vitamin D, B12, beautifying fatty acids and more, I make an exception to my “low sugar” rule when I have the chance to eat really good ice cream. If you can’t have dairy, coconut based ice cream are great, as coconut is also an ancestral food full of nutrients.

One afternoon, after a quick lunch, I felt like eating something sweet. Franklin, as always, was totally up for it. He loves sweets, like his daddy. But I wasn’t going to feed him some junky dessert. So, I pulled out the full fat ice cream and the apple pie spice kombucha, and we made ice cream floats. So good!

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Apple Pie Spice Kombucha Floats

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Breastfeeding Through Toddlerhood – An Interview with Victoria Leith of MamaBabaDo

Described by Shazzie as a world class body percussionist, singer, and songwriter, Victoria
Leith is the beautiful mind behind MamaBabaDo.com where she writes articles and recipes on how to bring health and happiness to families. She also concocts the most delicious delicacies and
treats in her own kitchen, and even has an eCourse to teach them how to make them too!

Passionate about life, healthy foods and raising children naturally, Victoria tells us more about breastfeeding her little girl Maya through toddlerhood despite unexpected challenges.

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Joanna Steven: Breastfeeding for longer than 6 months is, in our culture, considered to be “extended breastfeeding” rather than “full term”. But, when the decision to wean is left to the child, breastfeeding can, and often does, continue for years. Before having Maya, did you fully expect to breastfeed for longer than a year? What was your reasoning behind wanting to breastfeed her for as long as she desired?

Victoria Leith: Before I had Maya, I knew I was excited about breast-feeding – I’d even have dreams about it! It felt so wonderful and natural and I was looking forward to this part of motherhood more than anything. When she was born, my whole body was overwhelmed and flooded with love for this little thing in my arms. I knew that I was lucky in many ways to feel like this as I know it’s not a given that all women had that hormonal release of oxytocin!

My boobs were massive and ready to feed Maya – and then the initial struggles started! At first it wasn’t painful at all – then I got cracked nipples which was excruciating and then on top of that, had three bouts of mastitis! The last bout turned into an very painful abscess which just rocked my body and my mind. I still felt hopelessly in love with my daughter but was crying at every feed at the intense pain. My left breast was being poked and prodded and syringed by health professionals and then the word ‘surgery’ was mentioned, which one nurse warned me would affect feeding as they’d have to cut through the mammary glands. I was devastated. Meanwhile, Maya continued suckling happily on the right breast but totally rejected the infected one. And from six weeks old she never suckled that one again!

I think in some ways, having this tumultuous start to breasffeeding spurred me on to continue for longer than I originally thought I would feed for. After about 12 weeks, all pain vanished (so did the abscess after four failed antibiotic attempts and then finally eating a whole-food diet!!) I just enjoyed it so much and at one point, when Maya was about ten months I figured that we’d probably stop when she was one.

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Her first birthday came and went and there was not stopping either of us! Why would I stop giving my daughter this amazing life-force and optimum nutrition, just to put her onto another animal’s milk? She was thriving, health-wise and was also at this time drinking daily green smoothies with avocado and leaves plus steamed veggies.

Each year that went past, I just felt like it wasn’t time. I considered the option and it never made sense to me to give her milk that wasn’t my own. Even though she was only still feeding from one breast, it was enough for her (I had supplemented in her early months) with all the food she was eating too.

It came to a time of course when Maya’s feeding style changed. She would have a long drink in the morning at around six, whilst she was still dozing and then milk if she wanted it in the day (but she stopped asking for a while unless she’d a bump then ‘boo boo’ would always becalled upon!) She would also have a little drink before bed and then through the night, as we share a bed, she’d just help herself.

Over time, this became less and less and when she finally reached her fifth birthday, I felt that as every mammal has a total weaning process at some time, we needed to get to this point too. I never thought I would have fed and nourished her for this long and I am really glad I did.

We stopped the feeding in public years ago – it was something that happened in the privacy of our own home and we had a few raised eyebrows from friends when they asked every now and then ‘are you still feeding?’ and then finally people stopped asking and Maya continued to thrive with life and health.

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Joanna Steven: Nursing a toddler is sometimes frowned upon. What reactions did you encounter as your breastfed your little girl when she was past the age of 2? How did you handle any negative reactions?

Victoria Leith: When Maya was three months, I overheard a young mum say to her friend how she thought it was disgusting that mothers feed their babies past three months! This really shocked me – I didn’t realise how much we have lost the art of educating our girls and women about nourishing our babes! I was also ‘told off’ at a new friend’s house when Maya was two.

She asked about feeding and I just mentioned it in passing. Her reaction was not severe but very judgmental and she told me point blank that I should stop. People don’t consider to think why, though? I find it quite bemusing and also heartbreaking if I am honest that mothers will wean their children off milk (as they see it as unnatural to feed beyond one year) then give their babies caffeinated drinks like tea in their baby bottles with sugar in, and fizzy drinks! And

I am the weird one?! In fairness, no one has ever called me weird- in fact a couple of mums who I thought would really react sounded surprised but also a little envious that they weren’t still feeding their own! I didn’t go round advertising the fact I was still giving my daughter milk but I would always answer any questions (and try not to sound defensive! It’s a bit of a challenge to enable people to see that when something is good and helping your child, and nourishing and calming it, it’s OK!!

Joanna Steven: It would seem that on average, children will self-wean around the age of 3. This is not a rule however, and many continue to breastfeed for a few years after that. Did you ever feel that breastfeeding for several years was “too much”? What would you tell a new mother who is afraid that breastfeeding might get in the way of “having a life” (a common belief in mainstream circles)?

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Victoria Leith: I know so many mothers and all have had their own journeys. I don’t think you can tell beforehand – I feel that you can have an idea but if you allow yourself to be open to the possibility of longer term feeding then you won’t feel like it’s too much. If I was advising a new mother, I would say to make your baby and feeding it a part of your life and not to see it as an inconvenience.

It’s an incredible miracle what us humans (and animals!) can do! I see the whole package of conception, pregnancy, birth and child-raising as something that is fascinating and not to be hurried or rushed. I have managed to write books, articles, music and recipes whilst still breasfeeding.

One thing that I had that some people don’t was a very supportive partner in the form of my husband Tom. He always stood by my decision to breast feed long term and he would go the extra mile to ensure we were comfortable and giving me extra time to rest and recharge my batteries. I was very grateful to my friend Shazzie who also long-term fed her daughter. She was full of good advice and support so all new mums who want to breastfeed – get support! Know yourself and what you want to do. Don’t listen to the negatives as these people are coming from different places and often, uneducated places.

I am a pretty normal, intelligent woman who is artistic and holds a Teaching Degree – I also chose to feed my babe long term. End of!

Joanna Steven: Breastfeeding certainly requires more calories and nutrition than what is normally required of a woman – even during pregnancy! Which foods did you feel were the most beneficial in helping you stay nourished, active and happy?

Victoria Leith: Green smoothies every day! A little raw chocolate and nuts and seeds… lovely soups and tonnes of steamed broccoli and cauliflower! Coconut water in abundance… and more green smoothies!

Victoria Leith is a mama to two girls, one baby and one 8 year old. She runs MamaBabaDo which is a positive parenting venture, as well as her healthy cake crafting courses online. She blogs on Huffington Post and is the author of the app 97 Parenting Tips.

Creamy Vanilla Egg Custard w/ Chia Seeds Recipe

frankie-224x300Eggs are an important part of our diet. Since we do not eat meat, we need a quality source of protein, fat, vitamin K2, choline, vitamin A and more. Eggs fit the bill. But, we don’t want to risk getting them from mistreated hens.

Interestingly, I’ve noticed that the most healthful eaters eat plenty of animal products but would give them up in a heartbeat if they came from factory farms. That’s good news, and I truly believe that those who buy ethically raised animal products do more to further the cause of animals than people who give them up altogether. After all, food producers will cater to the needs of customers who are likely to actually buy from them.

How do we ensure quality eggs and happy hens? We get backyard chickens, of course. Doesn’t everyone? Backyard chickens are pretty common in Portland. Ours eat a soy free, corn free diet, and they get plenty of room to roam and eat our luscious grass and wiggly worms. They seem very happy, run around all day long, and are pretty friendly.

One nutritious way to eat eggs is in this pudding. Franklin called it “chocolate goo cake.” It’s not chocolate, it’s not cake, but he wanted to make chocolate goo cake, and I made this instead thinking he had forgotten all about it. He hadn’t, but he didn’t mind — this custard is delicious!

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Creamy Vanilla Egg Custard w/ Chia Seeds

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10 life hacks that make my life as a mom dramatically easier!

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Back when I had Franklin in 2010, motherhood hit me like a ton of bricks (that fell on me while I was being hit by a truck without warning). It was tough! I’m a naturally introverted person who likes to be alone a lot, and I love to be productive. When Franklin was born, I was taking a double loads of classes to finish my masters degree in psychology (I am also a law school graduate), I was running an online food store (for which I wrote newsletters, ordered products, stocked shelves, printed out orders and filled boxes, shipped them… I did pretty much everything), I was running a non profit food buying group so people in my community could have organic food at cost (which involved ordering produce, creating spreadsheets for orders, trying to accommodate everyone’s requests, sending out invoices…), I was also writing a couple of books, blogged, cooked everything from scratch, did most of the housekeeping, and more… It was insane!

I often say that Franklin was exactly the baby I needed to have at the time. Yes, he was terribly high needs, but I needed it. I needed someone to tell me to slow down, to be OK not doing anything. It was hard… But I’ve changed so much and for that, I’m grateful.

Today, I have another little boy, and I am with my kids nearly all the time, with my husband going to law school. I’m also determined not to have a baby sitter take care of baby Nicholas. I don’t feel comfortable leaving my baby with anyone before he’s at least a year old (and even then…), but… I’m totally not OK with being a mess at the end of the day.

Over the years, I’ve developed strategies to make my life easier. Here are some of the main ones… They allow me to nose overwork myself with things that aren’t important, while still allowing me to keep working. Can’t take the workaholic out of the girl!

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Mango Papaya Smoothie with Green Powder

I’m not a picky eater; I love pretty much everything. But papaya? Forget it. I tried eating some when I was pregnant with Franklin, since it’s supposed to help with heartburn, but no. But last week, we ended up with a papaya. Oh, what to do? I don’t like papaya, but I really don’t like to toss food in the trash (or in our case, the compost pile or the chickens).

The papaya sat in my fridge for a few days, until I thought… Hey! Let’s make a smoothie. The result? A deliciously tangy and refreshing drink, which would also make a great frozen dessert if you run it through an ice cream maker. I made it even better with some coconut oil and my current favorite green powder.

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Mango Papaya Smoothie with Green Powder

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[Review] Ice Cream that Everyone Can Scream For by Jennifer Robertson (+ giveaway!)

What’s better than a nice bowl of ice cream on a hot day? Living in Portland, I am fortunate to have access to some pretty amazing ice creams, including Salt and Straw, hailed as one of the 21 best ice cream shops in the US.

But, many of my friends can’t have dairy, and I do love making my own ice cream, with or without cream. So, when Jennifer Robertson, classically trained raw food chef, passionate mom, and downright wonderful friend came out with her new book Ice Cream That Everyone Can Scream For, I immediately purchased it.

The first recipe we tried was for Raspberry Mango Popsicle. Franklin had been asking for popsicles for ever, so I made these because they were easy and straightforward, and sounded delicious. They were a big hit.

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They’re the 3rd ones in the row of photos. Aren’t they all gorgeous?

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“New Seasons” Fajitas Bowl – 30 Minutes to a Super Nutritious Dinner

Only moms understand why evenings are the most difficult part of the day. Kids are tired, getting cranky, and might be hungry. Husbands are often tired, if they are even home. And we, after a full day of work or being with our children (it’s work too!), have to make dinner and hopefully go to bed with a clean kitchen. It’s not always easy! And while husbands can definitely cook, those of us with picky palates high standards would rather do it themselves. Yes, I want my food to be nourishing, organic, perfectly cooked, delicious, fresh, and I don’t want a massive mountain of dishes to clean afterwards.

Sounds impossible? It’s not. After 7 years of cooking for myself and Matthew, and then 4 more years of cooking with children, I’ve developed many recipes that fit the bill. One of them is what I call the “New Seasons Fajitas Bowl.” I created it to celebrate my favorite grocery store in Portland, New Seasons (my mom is obsessed with it, too). It’s like a Whole Foods store, except prices aren’t outrageous, employees are super friendly, and it’s a B corporation. If I wasn’t so passionate about working for myself, I’d work there!

Fajita Bowl

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Extended Breastfeeding and Introducing Solids – Ending Breastfeeding, Iron Supplementation, and Sleep

As my little bundle of joy, Nicholas, is approaching the 6 months mark, I thought I would share some information about extended breastfeeding and introducing solids. Many of you have asked about my family’s diet (read more here), including what I feed my little boys. Here are some answers, including both facts and personal experience.

Extended Breastfeeding and Introducing Solids

When should one stop breastfeeding? I believe that the decision to stop breastfeeding should come from the child, not from well-meaning family members, friends, or the medical community. Unfortunately, many people see breast milk as a source of nourishment, and nothing else. The child cannot eat solid, therefore he gets breastmilk. Once solids are introduced, breastmilk is no longer needed. Ironically, many people then switch to formula at this point, clearly showing that solids are not enough at such a young age.

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