Happy Holidays 2017 & Happy New Year 2018!

Happy Holidays 2017 & Happy New Year 2018!

What a wonderful year we had this 2017! We have gotten to know many new families, enjoyed working with many returning families, and welcomed a second midwife to the practice!

If you are a past or present TCM family, you should have already received your card in your mailbox! If not, it means we don’t have your current address. Feel free to email any address changes to info@TwinCitiesMidwifery.com so that we can update our list!

Much love and light to each of you!

MuTu Review

By Lauren, TCM Office Manager

As a mom of two toddlers I saw the impact pregnancy and birth had on my body. I wanted to strengthen my core and put some extra special care into the areas that were put through the ringer (twice!), but I wasn’t sure where to start. I thought about putting together my own exercise program, but that seemed overwhelming. It was around this time that I discovered MuTu, and I’m so glad I did. I’ve included below some basic information about MuTu (you can find more here) and my own experience with it.

MuTu is a 12-week system that helps women who want their bodies to “look, feel and function” better after having a baby – whether that was 6 weeks ago or 6 years ago. It focuses on helping women strengthen their core and pelvic floor, and help close diastasis recti. To get access to the MuTu program you have to purchase it, and $97 is no small investment, but when you compare it to a gym membership and hours of putting together your own program it’s pretty reasonable. No to mention that $97 also gets you lifetime access, which is a great benefit.

MuTu has three different components – 1) alignment and posture; 2) healthy eating; and 3) exercising. You do need some equipment to complete the exercises, but most of it you probably have around your house already (I only had to buy a set of dumbells and a set of resistance bands).

The first two weeks of MuTu gently ease you into the program. The only exercises are the “Core” exercises which take about 10-15 minutes, and I found them easy to fit into my day (so even with toddlers climbing all over me I could still do them). Week 3 starts the Intensive Workouts and those really kicked my butt, especially in the beginning. Starting with Week 3 through the end of the 12 weeks I had to carve out about 30 minutes/day to do the exercises (not including the daily walking), and I found it tough to do the exercises with my kids around. To be honest, I restarted MuTu probably four or five times because I always got stuck at Week 3. I would try doing the exercises at different times of the day, but with a full weeknight schedule and busy afternoons when my boys were napping, I couldn’t find a time of the day that worked well for me do the exercises consistently. Then, this summer, my younger son started sleeping through the night (only took 14 months!) and I found I could get up earlier in the morning and do the exercises before my boys were up. That made a big difference in my success rate with MuTu – so my #1 tip is find a time that works for you and your schedule and make the decision to stick with it.

Everything you need to complete the 12 weeks is available online, and you can download the videos to your phone, tablet, or computer so you can access them whenever you want. There are also “cheat sheets” of the exercises available that you can print off to help if you don’t like watching a screen while you exercise. The first two weeks I used a “cheat sheet” for the Core exercises, but after that I always watched the videos while exercising. To do the exercises correctly I found I needed the reminders and Wendy’s example in the video. I would also say that I’m not the most athletic or coordinated person I know, but overall the exercises were pretty accessible, even for me.

Now that MuTu is behind me the big question is…would I do it again? Yes!! In a heartbeat. I will do this after every baby born from here on out. After my second was born I had a small diastasis recti, and doing MuTu closed it. Completing MuTu also helped me feel stronger – I really appreciated that I was working the areas that needed some extra TLC, and I could feel the difference. I felt stronger and healthier. I would say that MuTu has a lot to keep track of with the exercises, daily walking, eating healthy, and working on your posture, and I didn’t do everything perfectly. The next time around I’ll focus more on my posture, but something I appreciated about MuTu is that I was able to go at my own pace. If there was a week where my kids were sick and getting up early to exercise didn’t happen, I just repeated that week and didn’t think twice about it. One final comment about MuTu, I also liked that it doesn’t hold up an unattainable body type as the goal; the goal is for every person who uses it to feel stronger, healthier, and more confident – whatever that means for them.

MuTu usually offers has a sale about three or four times a a year, and we always post them on our Facebook page. If you want more information about MuTu you can check it out here, or email info@twincitiesmidwifery.com with any questions you have.

International Babywearing Week

In honor of International Babywearing Week (Oct 2-Oct 8) we have a guest post from Jennifer Taylor from MomTricks. Enjoy!

My name is Jennifer Taylor, and I’m here to talk about babywearing, a wonderful practice that has been around for thousands of years. I believe that everyone should give it a try! There are so many great benefits of babywearing, and I’m here today to tell you about several of the best reasons to try babywearing with your little one.

Here are 7 great reasons to consider babywearing!

#1. Babies feel secure.

Suddenly being born into a new environment will naturally make babies feel overwhelmed. Being carried in a sling close to mother’s body mimics the same environment in the womb which babies have gotten used to for the past 9 months.

When babywearing, they’re close to their mother and can hear her heartbeat and breathing which will make the baby feel calm and secure. In their first three months of life, babies are still getting used to their new surroundings so being in a carrier can help them slowly adapt to the world.

#2. Baby cries less.

Carrying babies is proven to lessen bouts of crying. The swaying movement while being in a carrier and the closeness to the mother’s body help babies calm down and relax. The mother’s constant movement while wearing the baby helps them sleep longer as they are positioned comfortably in the carrier.

Additionally, babies who suffer from colic or spit-up once in a while are comforted by being in an upright position. Mothers are more in-tune with their baby’s cues when they are worn and be able to attend to them immediately.

#3. Hands-free mommy.

Mothers who wear their babies in a carrier are able to do more chores and tasks throughout the day because they have their hands free. Wearing the baby in the carrier is very convenient and is very helpful for mothers who don’t have companions.

They can bring their baby with them and even involve them in washing clothes, cleaning the kitchen, cooking meals, doing the grocery, vacuuming the floor, and a lot more!

#4. Mommy and baby bonding.

Keeping babies constantly close helps form a special bond between the mommy and baby. They get familiar with each other’s body movements and become in sync to one another. With babywearing, mothers can cherish every moment while their baby is young.

This is very helpful to those who are experiencing postpartum depression. Babies can reach out to their mothers too and create physical and emotional connections that can help them both adapt to the overwhelming changes they are experiencing.

#5. Beneficial for breastfeeding.

Babywearing also benefits breastfeeding because there is more opportunity for skin-to-skin contact that encourages production of oxytocin and prolactin.

These are two important hormones that help establish the breastmilk supply of a mother. Keeping the baby close. can help mothers determine early hunger cues and attend to them immediately, minimizing delayed nursing and crying. Babywearing also helps mothers have breastfeeding privacy because they can easily nurse the baby while worn in a public place.

#6. Babywearing is exercise.

A great way to gently lose that maternity weight is by babywearing. Regular walking and chores can already help mothers get back in shape. But mothers can enjoy different activities and have a real workout while the baby is worn.

The baby’s weight provides great aerobic exercise and getting fit is just a matter of wearing the baby and getting involved in the mother’s daily activities. Even shopping can be an exercise!

#7. It’s convenient!

Babywearing is very convenient for parents who are always out and about. Although strollers are very helpful, having a carrier helps especially when you are traveling and need to attend to errands quickly without the bulk. Carriers are very easy to wear and can be used without any assistance.





Minnesota births at homes and birth centers rise more than 300 percent

Minnesota births at homes and birth centers rise more than 300 percent

Press Release by MCCPM

Minneapolis, Minn.—The number of Minnesota babies born outside of a hospital setting rose by 340% percent from 2005 to 2015, according to birth certificate data from the Minnesota Department of Health.

More than 1.93 percent of births (1335 babies) in Minnesota in 2015 occurred outside of a hospital—mainly in homes and freestanding birth centers—up from 0.57 percent of births (404 babies) in 2005. As displayed in the bar graph, birth centers became available in 2010 when state licensure for birth centers was passed into law.

As the numbers of freestanding birth centers and midwives providing planned home births continue to rise, pregnant people and families have more choices for safe and individualized maternity care,” said Kate Saumweber Hogan, Certified Professional Midwife, Licensed Midwife, member of the Minnesota Council of Certified Professional Midwives (MCCPM), and president of the MN Chapter of the National Association of Certified Professional Midwives. “The type of care midwives are trained to provide has been proven to reduce complications, interventions, birth injury, trauma, and cesarean section, while providing greater client satisfaction.”

Births occur outside of hospitals more frequently in greater Minnesota than in the Twin Cities metro area. In 2015, 2.09 percent of babies born in greater Minnesota counties were born outside of hospitals, while 1.82 percent of babies in the seven-county metro area were born outside of hospitals, according to health department data.

According to MN Department of Health’s Report on Obstetric Services in Rural MN, the quality of maternal care in rural Minnesota has been on the decline in recent years. There are several possible factors for this, including aging populations in rural communities, obstetric workforce shortages, and costs to implement technology or update facilities to maintain obstetric services. As a consequence, many rural areas have inadequate obstetric coverage. A lack of local access to obstetric services is more than just an inconvenience for rural pregnant people. Extensive travel to their care provider can result in delayed initial prenatal care visits, missed return visits, and late identification of obstetric complications. Beth Bergeron is a Certified Professional Midwife, Licensed Midwife, and MCCPM member experienced in serving rural areas of the state, based in Moorhead, MN. Beth shares, “Midwives in rural areas may be providing more culturally sensitive and personalized care that appeals to certain populations and that rural community hospitals find difficult or unable to provide.”

Nationally births outside of hospital settings have increased since 2005. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the percentage of births occurring outside of hospitals increased from about 0.9 percent of U.S. births in 2005 to about 1.5 percent of U.S. births in 2015. In 2015, 61,041 births in the U.S. occurred outside of a hospital, including 38,542 home births and 18,892 births at birth centers.


About the Minnesota Council of Certified Professional Midwives

The nonprofit Minnesota Council of Certified Professional Midwives promotes, protects, and preserves midwifery as practiced by certified professional midwives in the state of Minnesota. The council is committed to safe maternity care provided in an out-of-hospital setting. For more information, visit http://www.minnesotamidwives.org.

Happy World Breastfeeding Week!

August 1-7 is world breastfeeding week, and in anticipation of it we put out a call on the TCM Facebook page asking people to send in their breastfeeding selfies (or even professional shots).

I have so loved getting to see these photos arrive in our inbox. There is so much love in each of these. Sometimes nursing feels like it takes SO MUCH TIME out of every day and night. But then there comes a time where the nursing relationship ends, and then it seems like it went so fast. I have a 22 month old who decided to wean himself at 1, and a 4.5 year old who we ended up planning a “goodbye to mommy milk day” a month before she turned 4! There are times when I wish my 22 month old was still nursing, as I have fond memories of my oldest nursing during those ages/stages. But it is very much a relationship, and babies get to have a lot of say in what nursing will look like for them (surprise, surprise, parents don’t get to be fully in charge of their children, yet again!).

As I saw these photos, along with love, nourishment, and beauty, I also saw a lot of connection. Sometimes nursing can feel like a lonely or isolating task. When I think of all of my currently nursing clients, I bet some of them are nursing right now as I type this. And then thinking of all of the babes nursing in our community, in our state, in our world, there are so many people nursing in this moment! So just a reminder that if it sometimes feels lonely, there are many others in the same boat, doing the same thing.

I so enjoyed these precious photos, and I hope you do, too. Thank you to all of the amazing families who sent them over to share with all of you. (Click the images to expand them with captions.)


The birth of baby M!

Oh this was such a sweet and dreamy birth. It was swift and hard, intense and healing. And I adore getting to watch big siblings meet their little siblings, such a treat! A huge huge thanks to this amazing family for sharing these photos. And tons of gratitude to Erica Morrow for capturing these images and being willing to share them here. Enjoy!

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Erica Morrow, owner of Slow Road Photography, is passionate about capturing all of the stages of new life, from beautiful bellies to birth stories to babies. Learn more at http://slowroadphoto.com/birth-story or find her on Instagram (@slowroadphoto).