Little moments, big questions... Let us help you get off to a great start.

November 17, 2014


If you are pregnant or work with pregnant moms, you too will be interested in this free app!


  • To see how a baby moves through the birth canal, have a look at the 3-D animation.




  • To better understand baby’s “station” and what it means to be a +1 or -2, manipulate the graphics.






  • To better understand what fetal positions mean, interact with the 3D model to move the baby into a variety of positions in the pelvis.



We were pleased to meet one of the creators at the Canadian Association of Perinatal and Women’s Health Nursing (CAPWHN) national conference in Regina last month. We are always excited to meet people who are interested in using technology for health teaching.


Nancy Hewer is a Perinatal Nursing instructor who strives to teach care practices that promote, protect, and support normal birth. We asked her what sparked the creation of Perinatal Pal.


“I have found it difficult for people to visualize and understand the cardinal movements of labor, fetal positions, and fetal station by reading from a text.  In my nursing classes, I used a doll and pelvis to demonstrate these concepts.”  She began to think about creating something 3-D, something for her students to interact with to better understand the importance of upright postures and maternal movement in labor.

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Together with a talented team at BCIT, they created some 3-D learning objects to insert into online perinatal nursing courses.


“We then wondered, how could we share what we have done?  The Perinatal Pal IPad app was born.”


You can download this app for free from the App Store. (Note: only available for iPad at this time.)

Nancy Hewer may be contacted at

(Images of Perinatal Pal app used with permission.)



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About the authors:

Cindy and Jana are Registered Nurses and International Board Certified Lactation Consultants who have assisted over 20,000 families.

Download their app NuuNest – Newborn Nurse Answers and Baby Tracking for expert guidance through the first crucial weeks after childbirth.


October 25, 2013

Preparing to Breastfeed during Pregnancy

What should I do during pregnancy to prepare to breastfeed?

Good news!  You don’t have to do anything to prepare your body to breastfeed while pregnant! Your body is already doing the work for you, developing the ducts and the milk secreting cells necessary for you to breastfeed.

You can, however, do some mental preparation.

  • Arm yourself with good information

There is an overwhelming amount of information available both online and in print. Unfortunately, not all of it is good information supported by evidence. To help you get started we have created a free mini breastfeeding course, Getting Ready to Breastfeed. Sign up here.


Websites with information you can trust:

Cindy & Jana Breastfeeding Posts


La Leche League International

Saskatoon Breastfeeding Matters


Do you prefer to learn through books? These are some of our favorites.

Dr Jack Newman’s Guide to Breastfeeding by Dr. Jack Newman and Teresa Pitman. Written in a readable, no nonsense style.

Breastfeeding Made Simple: 7 Natural Laws for Nursing Mothers by Nancy Mohrbacher and Kathleen Kendall-Tackett.  How to avoid and overcome breastfeeding challenges.

The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding by Diane Wiessinger. La Leche League’s wonderful guide to breastfeeding.

  • Surround yourself with supports

It is great to surround yourself with other moms who have had positive experiences with breastfeeding. You may want to attend a La Leche League meeting (mother-to-mother support) prenatally.


  • Nipple Preparation?

There is no need to prepare nipples prior to baby’s birth. Years ago, friction with a rough towel was recommended prenatally but it was actually found to be damaging. almostfearlessbellyshot

Women’s nipples come in many different shapes and sizes. The baby latches to the breast, not to the nipple, therefore unusually shaped nipples are rarely a cause for concern. If you have concerns, speak to your doctor, your midwife or an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant.


  • Equipment for breastfeeding 

Do I need…….

  1. A Nursing bra? You do not need a nursing bra to breastfeed. You could simply unfasten a regular bra when you breastfeed. If you chose to buy a nursing bra, wait until you you are at least 36 weeks pregnant to judge the correct size you will need.
  2. Nursing Pads? Not all moms find that they leak milk. Those who do may only leak for a short time. You may want to limit the supply you initially purchase.
  3. Breast pump? Not every breastfeeding mother needs a breast pump. Many moms find they prefer to hand express for occasional  bottles or to establish a “stash”. To learn more about hand expression, see this post.
  4. Breastfeeding pillow? Some moms find that a breastfeeding pillow is convenient but it is not necessary. You could use bedroom pillows instead. If you chose to purchase a breastfeeding pillow, remember that all bodies are shaped differently so you may need to shop around for one that best fits your body.
  5. Formula samples? You do not need to have formula samples “just in case”. Studies show that not having formula in the house leads to better success with breastfeeding. Be wary of signing up for “free products” as often this product is formula. Many moms prefer to donate samples to their local food bank to avoid the temptation to give formula during a long or fussy night.


  • Preparing to BreastfeedHave a birth plan

Limit medications and interventions during labor and birth whenever it is possible to do so. This can help your baby to feed better in the first hours after birth.

Breastfeed as soon as possible after birth, ideally within the first hour.

Room in with your baby so that you can respond quickly to early hunger cues.

For hospital births, some parents have found it helpful to create an announcement card to attach to baby’s bassinet saying: “I am a breastfed baby… no formula or pacifiers please!”


  • Learn about normal newborn feeding behaviour

It can be unsettling for parents if they assume baby is feeding frequently because “I don’t have enough milk for him.” Babies feed very frequently (at least 8-12 times in 24 hours). See also our blog post “How often will my Newborn feed”.


  • Make a plan for the first 2 weeks after baby’s birth

Breastfeeding is time consuming as newborns feed often and both of you are learning. Planning ahead will help to save your time for the most important things.

New parents frequently tell us that they had too much company in the week following their baby’s birth. Limit your visitors and ask those you do have to help with household tasks. For other suggestions visit our blog post: 6 Keys to Surviving the First Week Home with a New Baby.


  • Believe in yourself

A woman’s body is an amazing! Believe in your ability to provide the right food at the right time and at the right temperature for your baby.

Learn more about breastfeeding:Bras to Breast Pumps: What do you really need for breastfeeding? and Positions for Breastfeeding.


(Banner photo courtesy of Flickr: Frank de Kleine)


thumbnail-cindy-and-janaCindy and Jana are Registered Nurses and International Board Certified Lactation Consultants who have assisted over 20,000 families.



September 27, 2013

Life with a Newborn – the 2nd Time Around

This guest post originated from a twitter conversation about the effects of having too much company in the newborn period. Carolyn from Moments in Mommyland graciously agreed to share the changes she made when her second child was born.


My first delivery was a bit of a blur. It was long, draining and emotional. My son was descending in a posterior position making things slow and giving me painful back labor. Once he was finally in my arms, I was beyond exhausted and very weak. So weak in fact, that I couldn’t walk across the room without help. But being excited first time parents, we wanted to share our joy and excitement!  Within an hour of him being born, the world knew through phone calls and Facebook that our little bundle had arrived! It wasn’t long before people began showing up to visit, despite the fact that I hadn’t even had a chance to shower yet. To say I didn’t feel like socializing would be a huge understatement!

So when it came time to have our second, I laid down some ground rules.


Rule number one: No visitors at the hospital except immediate family!

It felt a little cruel, as I knew there were many who were excited to meet our latest. But it took away so much pressure knowing that I didn’t have to look presentable or make small talk. I could doze in and out of sleep when needed and it allowed me endless skin to skin time. Very important when trying to establish good breastfeeding! It kept things private, and I really cherish the memories of that.


Rule number two: We allowed a very limited number of visitors during our first week at home!

Again, I know everyone was excited, but I was tired! Unlike the first time, my labor was fast and intense. It also happened in the middle of the night resulting in being awake for 48 hours. Once home, I was not only adjusting to life with a newborn again, but also with an active toddler. So we instead planned an informal get together for a week later where everyone could come together at one time to meet the baby.


Rule number three: Let the housework and cooking go!

This was and still is a huge struggle for me, since I like to be organized and keep to schedules. But it’s just not worth the added stress when you are tired and hormonal. Just leave it! Right now your job is to take care of your children and yourself, period.


Welcoming a new life into your family is an incredibly special time. I encourage you to savor and enjoy it. They are babies for such a short amount of time, and before you know it they will be walking, talking and no longer depending on you to fill their needs.

So go ahead and make your own rules. Do whatever you need to do at the time and have the confidence to say no when things are becoming too much for you. Focus on what’s best for your family and your baby. You’ll be glad you did.

What would you do differently after your next baby?


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Carolyn Bechard is a stay at home mom living in Vancouver raising two boys aged 2 years and 3 months. She the voice behind, where she writes about the daily ups and downs of her parenting journey. Though some days are hard, there is nothing else she’d rather be called than wife and mother.

You can follow her on facebook at

or on Twitter @carolynleanne