We recently hosted a one month personal challenge group for local moms.
And it was awesome!
I loved seeing the pictures and stories of all those mamas loving on themselves and challenging themselves in different ways.
The original list was a bit more detailed, but here is the list of challenges in case you wanted to particiapte yourself!
Last year, we started giving $5 of each membership to local non profits.
It was amazing : We were able to give away almost $1,000 to 3 different local non profits.
So we are continuing this year! We have choosen two organizations to support and donate to in 2016:
So a big thank you to all of our members and partners : you are helping us support our local community - which means the world to us.
Looking for some new, healthy recipies to try? My amazing foodie sister, Kelli Borgman, is a registered dietitian in West Michigan - and put together a few of her favorite recipies for us! Enjoy!
Butternut Squash Soup
If you aren't into cutting up butternut squash, there are already diced freezer options at most stores, and some nicer produce sections stock it already cut up and ready to go.
This recipe freezes really well, too.
Gluten Free Pizza Crust
This would also be really good to make ahead of time and freeze so you have a quick dinner on hand. You can't go wrong with a simple fresh mozzarella and basil combo. Try it in mini sizes for the kids!
Serve with salad (try this dressing, it's pretty easy to whip up)- I shake up mine in a mason jar.
Otherwise, Against the Grain is one of my fave gluten free brands at Nature's Market- this recipe is a copycat of theirs. They're a little pricey, which is why I sought out this recipe. Try any of their products in the freezer section, you can't go wrong! They're all delicious.
Dark Chocolate Bars
You do need a food processor for this one.
And now for the sweet side of life- I try to do healthy, homemade sweets to keep my sweet tooth happy while adding quick nutrition to my day. These bars are my new go-to. I like my chocolate dark, so these are the perfect sweetness for me, however, I can see adding a bit of maple syrup or more dates if you like yours sweeter. Try subbing dried cherries, mango or raisins for some/all the coconut would be yummy and perhaps a bit sweeter, too! The chia seeds are so good, I just loooove the texture of this, and with all those healthy fats and minerals it really satisfies! (Check out this link- dates for better birth?!).
And a couple great recipes for the babes:
Apple + Butternut Squash // Apple + Cranberries
We really hope you can join us in our upcoming online challenge group!
Pom pom hat and $25 gift certificate from Velo City Cycles
Cowl or hat from Tugboat Yarning
Make up application by Rachel Harnad from Bombshell Blow Dry Bar
Prize package (t-shirt, mug, excerise band) from Nephew Physical Therapy
3 month family membership from Holland Aquatic Center
45 minute massage from Mommy Massage Club
Blooming Plant from Jonkers Garden
3 1-month memberships from Girlfriends Fit Club
10 1-free trial class from Baila Cardio
Make sure you are logged in to your Moms in Tow account, and sign up
(if you are not a Moms in Tow member, we will do a drawing from a waiting list. To be on the list, email : firstname.lastname@example.org)
Today is Giving Tuesday!
A global day dedicated to giving back. Help us give back back to our local community : we will be donating 50% ($15!) of each new membership sign up today.
The donations will be passed on to 3 local non profits we have been highlighting this year (all year we have been giving $5 of each membership/renewal to these organizations). Thank you for your help is supporting local!
by Raechel Haller, Massage Sci LLC (Mommy Massage Club)
Q: Is massage safe while pregnant?
A: There are many old wives tales and myths around massage and pregnancy. But there is no evidence that demonstrates massage can induce labor, cause miscarriages, or create complications.
Physiologically, there is no reason a pregnant woman should not enjoy the benefits of massage as would someone who is not pregnant. Pregnant women are not sick; they do not have an illness that could be worsened through massage. In fact, there is evidence of some pretty wonderful benefits:
Q: What are some of those benefits?
A: Studies have shown pregnant women reported decreased depression, anxiety, and leg and back pain post-massage.
Cortisol levels (the stress hormone) also decreased, excessive fetal activity decreased, and the rate of prematurity was lower.
Q: What about the feet or ankles? Shouldn't we avoid those areas?
A: It's easy to do a quick Google search and come across countless articles, blogs, and posts that warn against ankle massage while pregnant. But it's way more difficult to find any source for such claims. It's like a big rumor that hasn't fully ran its coarse yet.
There's no evidence that applying pressure to certain points on the feet will cause uterus contractions. This wide-spread myth likely stems from reflexology.
Reflexology is a belief that points on the feet correspond to internal organs, and by pressing or massaging those points, one can stimulate those organs. The supposed points for the uterus and ovaries are on the ankles. Two large scale reviews in both 2009 and 2011 concluded there is no sufficient evidence to support the use of reflexology for any medical condition, let alone inducing labor.
Also, there was a great study in 2014 in which researchers attempted to induce labor in 221 post-due date women by applying acupuncture needles. Even when poking these gals every other day for a week (that's a lot of poking!), none of the findings supported reflexology claims. If they couldn't induce labor with that amount of poking, surely rubbing the ankles is not going to do the trick.
So not only is there no evidence to back up the myth, there's also no plausible reasoning to explain how it might work. If pressing or massaging ankles did influence labor, it would be risky for pregnant women to simply walk about their daily lives... or even put on most shoes!
Lastly, if it were just that easy to kickstart the birth process, docs and nurses would be spending much more time on women's feet in the delivery room, and the use of hormones to induce labor would be obsolete. So, let's give a big "Yes, please," to massage for pregnant feet.
Q: What about women who have known complications? Is massage okay for them?
A: As always, just run it by your doctor.
Q: What about when the baby bump gets big... are women comfortable on a massage table?
A: We have a variety of pillows and positions available to assist in making sure clients are relaxed during the massage. We do not ask pregnant woman to lay on their stomach unless that is comfortable for them. Most often we treat moms-to-be while they lay on their back, and/or on their side with the support of pillows.
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Raechel Haller is a Licensed Massage Therapist and owner of Massage Sci LLC, which specialized in effective therapeutic massage. To learn more about their pregnancy massage treatments and package deals, visit http://www.MommyMassageClub.com. Moms in Tow Members get 20% off all single pregnancy treatments!
We are so thankful for you, and the unique MOM that you are.
Not only do we believe that moms make the world go round, generally do all the behind the scenes work at every hour of the day, we believe that moms never get enough thanks, so THANK YOU.
You make such a big difference in your family, and in so many around you on a daily basis. Even if you feel there are things that you can improve on, you are just the mom you are meant to be and that your family needs.
YOU make Moms in Tow what it is.
And we can not say enough thanks for that. Each time you participate (either in an activity, through an encouraging comment, or by supporting one of our local discount partners) you are helping to encourage community and supporting each other. That is the point of Moms in Tow : to encourage and support each other.
We hope you pass on the love with us.
Here is a little secret: we don't make much on this business, and that is actually just the way we like it. We like to support local non profits, our members, and community more than we are interested in a paycheck.
To celebrate Thanksgiving, and small business Saturday : we are offering a very rare "sale" on our membership. Usually just $30/year - the discounts alone pay for that membership ten-fold. But we hope the support, resources, and upcoming campaigns coming up in the next year will be worth even more.
Please share this sale with your friends, family, and more!
Moms in Tow is an online and local mom community.
Get encouraged, support your community, and get discounts!
Every mom in Holland with littles can now rejoice : there is a new indoor playground!
Moms in Tow members will receive $1 off entry with your virtual membership card, AND Meg's Playhouse is giving away a 1-year membership!
Please enter the giveaway at the link below:
Meg's Playhouse Membership Giveaway
Parenting is so overwhelming.
Most days I need to remind myself to take one day at a time, or I find myself trying to read all the parenting advice articles on the internet (some good info out there, but for the most part a bad idea). I have discovered that you know your child best, that you are your child are together for a reason. Your time with your child is so important and limited and valuable - I have learned we need to balance learning from other sources, and learning from our child and ourselves and just being present.
Recently came upon this :
You can download this PDF and some more stuff from Brene Brown .
What do you think?
This morning we met for a hike/ scavenger hunt at Paw Park Park.
(Such a great park between Zeeland and Holland - my daughter loves all the bridges!)
I brought little bags for the kids if they wanted to look for fall things, or to put anything in the "treasure bag" that they think is cool! (preferably minus picking plants, probably a no no)
I glued little lists of possible fall finds on brown paper lunch bags from (A Pumpkin and a Princess) , very simple. If you weren't able to make it, and want to print off your own list, there is still some fall time left to explore.