Check out this gorgeous breastfeeding slideshow by Bloom Birth Photography! Breastfeeding photography is a fantastic way to celebrate your breastfeeding relationship with your child. The special images in this slideshow are a great demonstration that breastfeeding is about much more than just food. It is an interplay of love between mother and infant.

Bloom Birth Photography is offering an exclusive special in celebration of World Breastfeeding Week, so don't miss this wonderful opportunity to capture this memorable part of life's journey!

 Bloom Birth Photography Breastfeeding Slideshow


Empowered Birth


"Birth is much more than a physical experience. Deep-seated feelings and emotions often surface during the highly emotional process of childbirth. Unresolved issues from previous birth experiences or difficult past life events can interfere with labour progress both physically and psychologically... Every woman deserves a positive and empowering birth experience and should make choices best for her to achieve this." -BirthWorks International

(Photo credit: The superbly awesome Bloom Birth Photography)



I'm in tears reading the newest birth stories of The Birthing Room families! The Birthing Room is in the middle of a life transforming movement, which I doubt has been seen in NZ since Jean Sutton turned around her primary birthing unit to a natural birth phenomenon!

Women are coming away from our antenatal classes, and birthing their babies in the most empowering, hard core, Mama warrior way! No matter what the circumstances, they are making awesome informed decisions, trusting their bodies, and feeling on top of the world afterwards. Fathers are finding their voice, being the advocate their partner hoped they would be, and are being fully involved in the birth process of their child. These families are amazing.


The Birthing Room Antenatal Classes

(Special thanks to Bloom Birth Photography and the gorgeous Mama for the beautiful picture)



Are you a parent of preschoolers? Like some encouragement, support & new ideas? We have a TOOLBOX PARENTING GROUP for parents of children aged 0-5yrs coming up in August in PEGASUS (15mins north of Christchurch). The Early Years covers:
• Parent types
• Developmental stages
• Tools for engaging cooperation
• Discipline
• Making memories
• Being the parent your child needs.

$75 per person or $110 per couple for each six week group. Subsidies available. Toolbox courses are free to foster carers, whanau caregivers, adopters, grandparents raising grandchildren, and Home for Life parents thanks to government funding.
Thursday 20 August - Thursday 24 September 2015

Bookings or queries: Rosemary and Dan Joyce, ph: 027 3500 119 or email us

The Parenting Place Early Years Toolbox Group


The Birthing Room & Bloom Birth stand

The Birthing Room & Bloom Birth Photgraphy stand

Looking forward to seeing all you wonderful parents to be at The Christchurch Baby & Child Expo this weekend! Brilliant to see today all of the holistic stands that are on offer to you. Step into The Birthing Room & Bloom Birth Photography stand and begin your experience of empowered birth. Sharon and I would love to chat with you about hot topics such as...

  • birth companions
  • how to make your birth an incredible, joyous event
  • how to increase your chances of having a vaginal, drug free, positive birth
  • how you would like to feel about your birth after it happens
  • positive birth experiences for dads

And if you step in at the right moment you'll also find pregnancy massage (thanks to the NZ College of Massage), empowering birth books for sale, free apples for your children, and go in the draw to win a package from Bloom Birth Photography and The Birthing Room!

See you Saturday or Sunday at The Baby & Child Expo, Pioneer Recreation Centre, 9am-4pm, Christchurch. www.babyandchild.co.nz

xx Rosemary


choice vs care

I am so excited! The day of The Revolutionary Round Table is finally here!! If you're not already frothing at the mouth in anticipation, I have attached a little sample for you. Dr Kelly Dombroski of Canterbury University will be speaking on Choice vs Care: Incorporating care into our choice focussed health care system. Check out her blog piece about this tug of war subject...

"When it comes to giving birth, having the right to choose is not the only thing that matters…
...in labour, the rational choice part of our brain actually needs to be ‘shut down’ in a way, so that we might allow ourselves to fully immerse in the instinctual and embodied practice of labouring. Yet, in most healthcare systems such as New Zealand’s (and Australia, where Mckinnon works, and the Netherlands where Mol works) we valorise choice in our healthcare — and in fact, in our Western notions of personhood. This means that in the logic of choice, birthing women are asked to keep their rational mind ticking over in order to continue to make choices (the endless questions from your maternity carer!)."

When it comes to giving birth having the right to choose is not the only thing that matters

Ticket are still available for The Revolutionary Round Table event. So purchase yours by emailing The Birthing Room click here or pop down at 6:30pm tonight and pick up your ticket at the door. Don't miss out on this empowering event! A great night out for expectant parents, those who are passionate about birth, midwives, CBEs, doulas, students and allied health staff.

 The Revolutionary Round Table


The revolutionary round table

Register you and a friend for The Revolutionary Round Table today, and receive your ticket half price! This empowering event could be the foundation of your positive birth experience. Become informed about important topics such as breech birth, good care vs choice, how birth impacts on your baby's body & more. Don't miss out! Offer ends at 11pm Friday 19th June. Event also open to those who are simply passionate about birth, midwives, CBEs, doulas, students and allied health staff. To register please email info@thebirthingroom.co.nz or click here

For more information about The Revolutionary Round Table event please click here


Rosemary (4 of 22)

VITAMIN K AT BIRTH? How do you make an informed decision?

Questions to ask when making your decision include:
-Differences between Vit K injection and oral supplement
-Does optimal cord clamping & bacteria from vaginal birth & skin to skin make a difference to baby's Vit K levels?
-What is Vitamin K Deficiency Bleeding and what are the risks of my baby getting it?
-Are Vit K levels in breastmilk low, and what are researchers comparing breastmilk to?
-If all babies are born with low levels of Vit K, is it really a deficiency?

The article "Revisiting vitamin K and the newborn: what have we learned in a decade?" highlights some of the important questions that parents need to ask, as well as what has changed in the research on Vitamin K Prophylaxis in the last 10 yrs. sarahwickham.com

"Greer has also added to our knowledge about vitamin K in breast milk. This is a controversial topic because some of the research cited to support the claim that breast milk contained ‘low’ levels of vitamin K (a term that always begs the question of exactly what breast milk is being compared to as a standard) was carried out at a time when women were not being supported to breastfeed in ways that are now considered optimal. Although Greer (2004) argued that the levels are still not high enough (which again could be said to fuel the notion that the postnatal period is dangerous for babies), he did demonstrate that levels were about twice the average of some of these earlier reports.
In the same year, a Japanese study (Kojima et al 2004) found that the concentration of vitamin K in breast milk varied according to the diet of the women concerned, implying that maternal nutrition may be a factor.

...there also exists the view that the tendency to VKDB may be iatrogenic and the result of medicalised birth. Expressed more in verbal conversation, on internet blogs and in discussion articles, one recently published example can be found where Cranford
(2011) questioned whether modern birth practices stress the clotting system of the newborn, arguing that trauma caused by medicalised birth, limited early breastfeeding and practices such as early cord clamping and circumcision can deplete a newborn of its clotting factors. While some of these arguments (namely limited early breastfeeding and circumcision) are already widely accepted to be risk factors for VKDB and early cord clamping is considered by a number of people to be a likely culprit, research is needed to support or refute the idea that other practices can lead to VKDB. It is important to note that some of the babies who have gone on to develop VKDB have been born physiologically, at home and outwith the presence of medical intervention
(Brousseau et al 2005)."

Thanks to Bloom Birth Photography and the special family that has given permission for their picture to be used.


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Let me tell you a story about Sam. You may know her. Maybe you are her. She is the Mum I meet for coffee. My hairdresser. My aunty. The brand new Mum I see on facebook with a drip in her hand and her baby in a plastic cot. She is who I meet everyday…
Sam is the amazing woman who in a group setting jokes her baby was too big to get out. “A monster of a baby!” she laughs. Everyone laughs and agrees with her. On the outside is humour. On the inside pain and disappointment. She believes her pelvis was too small and her baby too big for her to birth her baby.
But let’s unpack Sam’s story a little bit. SAM stands for Scared or Sadness About Myself. Typically there are three parts to Sam’s story:

Before she was pregnant:
Going into pregnancy Sam believes her body has failed her. Maybe she has been sexually abused. Maybe she experienced infertility. Maybe she tried for a long time to lose weight, but didn’t. Maybe she experienced terrible period pain. Maybe she had previous health issues. Maybe she had a miscarriage. In her mind, her body does not work for her.
Sam gets pregnant and this pregnancy processes: Her body of course is amazing and is carefully, masterly piecing together her infant day by day without Sam even having to think about it. But in Sam’s mind is a different story. In her conscious or subconscious mind is the abuse, her dislike for her body, her miscarriage. She carefully chooses her birth place and team based upon her history and negative self belief. She will choose the place where interventions are the quickest, as she has a gut feeling that birth will not go smoothly. After all, her body does not work for her. She will choose a birth team who will be skillful in intervening, so that they will do interventions to the best of their ability. She has many scans to help allay her fears of something going wrong. But these set out to do the very thing she was trying to alleviate. Innocently made comments such as “You’re baby is very big for your gestation” and “There may be something wrong with your baby but I can’t get a clear picture. Come back in a couple of weeks so we can have another look.” reinforce her belief that her body does not work for her. She comes away feeling anxious and afraid. The clincher is when she has an appointment with her care provider and hears “I think your pelvis is too small to birth your large baby.” She agrees to an induction before her due date to prevent her birthing the 15lb baby her mind has created.

During the birth:
It is far worse than her mind ever believed possible. Intervention after intervention occurs as she labours on the bed. Although not physically tied down, she is restrained by the electrical foetal monitoring, the IV drip, the medication, the pain. Bright lights, noise, direct questions and fear make it impossible for her to enter her primal brain, the part of Sam that knows instinctively how to give birth. She feels disempowered, out of control, a failure. Really she is a warrior, an Amazon woman. At every point through her pregnancy she has made the best decision she could with the information she had. At every point she has thought of and made decisions based on her or her infant’s survival. But she will never know how amazing she is. Finally her baby is born. She is told that medicine saved her baby. This reinforces her belief in her choice of birth place, her birth team, and her negative self belief. In her mind, her pelvis was too small to birth her baby.
At every point of Sam’s journey were options that would have changed her story. (See below for some top tips) Without a deviation in her life story, Sam may well go onto hold the belief that her body does not work for her for the rest of her life…

Before pregnancy:
Get counseling to help you work through issues that will impact on your birth.
Develop self esteem. You are precious, smart, valuable and loved. Affirm yourself.
Do research about the impact of birth teams, birth places and environment on the birth process. Read books that empower you and increase your trust and faith in birth.

During pregnancy:
Choose a care provider that believes in the ability of a woman to birth her baby.
Choose a place of birth where you feel most safe and secure. That is where you will labour and birth the best.
Surround yourself with people who believe in your ability to birth your baby. Listen to positive birth stories. Challenge any negative self belief you hold.
Attend a BirthWorks course.
Grieve and heal previous childbirth related losses.

During birth:
Create an environment conducive to natural birth.
Make informed decisions about medical intervention and obstetric drugs.
Use optimal foetal positioning to create lots of space in your pelvis for baby to be born.
Choose a kiwi companion to be present with you, or a mother, sister or close friend who believes in your ability to birth your baby.

To find out more about BirthWorks courses click here
If you would like to find out more about how a Kiwi Companion can help your birth click here