Dani Crandlemire Kelly, RHN

"The evidence for nutritional therapy is becoming so strong that if the doctors of today don’t become nutritionists, the nutritionists will become the doctors of tomorrow." – Anonymous Irish Doctor

Norah’s Birth Story

Norah Soleil Margaret Kelly

January 6, 2013

11:53 pm

lbs., 11 oz.

 

The day of Norah’s birth was a beautiful winter day.  It had warmed up a little, and people were starting to come out of hibernation mode, anxious to leave their cozy homes for a breath of fresh air.  Perhaps that’s what nudged Norah into this world on this particular date.

Sunday morning I received a message from Dani via Facebook.  She had been cramping and dealing with a back ache since the night before.  Despite this and some birth show, she had slept quite well.  She was excited for this to be the day she and Colin would meet their daughter, and Rylan meet her sister!  I told her we’d keep in touch through the day, and to call if she wanted me to come over.

Throughout the day the rushes became stronger and closer together.  At around 9:15 pm,  Dani called me.  Things were getting pretty intense, she said.  I headed to her apartment. 

When I arrived at 9:45 pm, I walked into a very relaxed, joyful room.  Dani lounged on the couch with a heating pad while Colin timed contractions on his laptop.  Dani’s mom, Gail,was there, and we visited for a while.  Every so often, Dani would shift and start to breathe deeply.   “Here comes another one!  Start me up, Colin!”  The contractions were still a bit irregular.

Having been in touch with some friends who worked at the hospital, Dani had found out that there hadn’t yet been a New Year’s baby for 2013.  She and Colin started to consider birthing at URVH for their chance at the honour.  Soon, the decision was made.  Norah would make her entrance into the world at the hospital, rather than home.  Once that was settled, the contractions started to pick up.  They became stronger, and Dani put on her serious face.  We bustled around getting an overnight bag packed.  I suggested Dani get into the shower, and she crouched there, letting the spray massage her back.  She moaned through contractions and I could tell they were bringing Norah closer.

It was around 11:15 pm when we arrived at the labour ward at URVH.  Knowing that Dani had planned a homebirth, the nurses were rather surprised when we showed up in active labour.   Dani and Colin were positive of what they wanted for their baby’s birth, and confidently expressed their wishes to the staff.  The resident doctor, Dr. Kate MacKercher, took some time to ask some questions and did her best to accommodate them.  

Dani had settled into the Jacuzzi tub immediately on arriving.  The bath slowly filled up as Dani let the shower spray her back.  I rubbed her lower back, and Colin gave her wonderful support, affirming her hard work.  In the light of the candle, we could see that Dani’s breathing had changed slightly.   “I feel like pushing,” she moaned.  Not wanting to push too soon, I suggested she pant through a couple contractions with me.  Soon, though, there was no denying the urge!

Dani stepped out of the tub and lay on the bed, quickly flipping over to a more comfortable position on her hands and knees.  Dr. MacKercher confirmed that she was indeed fully dilated, and with that, Dani followed her body’s urges.  She breathed her baby out, slowly, completely in control.  Charlee, and her mother watched from the side as their niece and granddaughter emerged into the world.  Nurse Beth, with Dr. MacKercher, guided her little body out and immediately handed her to Colin.  He held his daughter, the emotions playing on his face – pride, joy, relief and such happiness!  As Dani turned to lie on her back, Colin laid little Norah on her chest.  They cuddled their daughter, adoring every bit of her.  

Not very long after Norah’s birth, Dani’s father and stepmother, Rick and Margo, came in.  Dr. Boyle also showed up – Norah had come so quickly that they had just missed it!  

Dani and Colin had a special request for Norah’s birth.  They had wanted to birth the placenta before having the cord cut.  This was not a usual request for the staff, but they agreed.  The new little family enjoyed some snuggles and it wasn’t until almost an hour later that the placenta birthed.  

And so, a beautiful little girl joined her family earth side…the first URVH baby of 2013!

 

 

 

 

Written by Emilie Patterson – Thank you for the honour of accompanying you on your birth journey!  

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Emeric’s Birth Story

On February 26th, I woke up in Queenstown to another grey and white late-winter morning.  Snow started falling softly, and then more fiercely, and another foot rapidly accumulated on the already-six-foot banks out of which we New Brunswickers had tentatively carved paths and roads and lives during the previous several months.  A winter wonderland.

When my husband and kids woke up, I told them how much I hoped not to receive the call from Dani on this day of the last (surely the last?) major snow-storm of the year.  Seconds later, my phone chirped with the text message from Dani.  She was in the birth process—entering the veil—and I had to leave. 

I packed my birth kit, dug my car out of the driveway, and by early afternoon, I had set off.  We live in a little rural hamlet, and to reach the highway that would take me to Woodstock, I have to pass over pitted roads, through field and forest.  At the crest of a steep hill, before the village of Gagetown, the snow paused, and the clouds parted, and through a break in the trees, a column of sun streamed across the road, illuminating the horizon, the river in the distance, the leafless branches, in one slow motion moment of glory.  It was beautiful, and I couldn’t help the wave of gratitude and joy that flooded over me: it felt like a visitation, and a sign, that the birth of this baby was being blessed.   

Dani is one of those great beauties, who nonetheless carries herself in a way that makes it seem as though she might not know how just how stunning she is.  She has an attitude and a countenance that strikes one, on first meeting, as airy and fun—which she is!—but when one gets to know her, it becomes clear just how thoughtful, substantive, brave and curious she is.  Dani’s first two daughters had been born in the hospital, both arriving a few days before the date they were expected.  But every pregnancy, and every birth is different, and this new baby was taking their time to come to earth.  During each meeting we had had prenatally, the closer time moved to the birth-day of this new baby, the more I expected that Dani would unload what must be her intense frustration at being almost 42 weeks pregnant—like most of us do!  Never.  She remained serene and gracious throughout the entirety of her very long pregnancy.  

When I arrived, Dani was sitting on her sofa like a goddess with a Mona Lisa smile, while her sweet and spirited daughters jumped around.  Colin, her caring husband was there, and their stunning high-ceilinged, open-plan home was tidy and warm.  Dani’s sensations were still quite mild, but I could see that she was entering that floating primal world of birth.  Rylan, Dani’s oldest daughter, was wired and excited, and I sensed that Dani would appreciate some time alone with Colin, and their younger daughter Norah.  By this time, my husband Lee and our kids had followed me to Carleton County and were staying in Florenceville, just a short drive from Dani and Colin’s, so I suggested to take Rylan back to Florenceville with me to watch a movie with my crew.  

Rylan and I had a great time chatting in the car on the way to Florenceville, and my kids were thrilled to see her.  I ended up falling asleep while they watched their movie, and when Lee woke me up close to midnight, the kids were all sleeping on the sofa.  Dani had texted me to let me know that the birth was picking up, so I woke Rylan, and she was immediately bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, eager to get back to see her mum, and to witness the birth of her new sibling. 

Dani and Colin’s house, set back from the road, looked magical as we approached from the dark road—fairy lights in the window and everything aglow.  It felt even more magical as we entered, leaving the frigid end-of-winter behind, and I really got the sense that the whole place was encircled in a warm halo of trust, and love.  Upstairs, Dani was sitting on the sofa again, and although her sensations were quiet, I could see that she was hazy; enveloped in the mist of the birth-dance. 

Gail, Dani’s mother was there.  I had only met Gail briefly before, but it was clear that her presence was entirely positive: gentle, trusting of the process, helpful and practical.  When Dani experienced another, stronger sensation, Gail gathered Norah and Rylan, and took them to bed.  I too decided to get some sleep before the baby’s arrival, and as I tiptoed upstairs, I peeked around the corner to see Gail, Norah and Rylan lying like sardines in Rylan’s single bed, giggling and whispering, the three of them, like it was Christmas eve—awaiting their new little love.

I fell asleep immediately and deeply, but woke at 4:15 am to the sounds of birth—deep primal sounds.  Not the sound of fear, or anxiety, but of strength and power; guttural sounds.  The sound of a baby coming down.  I rolled out of bed to the see Dani coming out of the shower, being helped by Colin, heading towards the birth pool.  Gail had woken up as well, and she floated over, ready with towels.  Dani stepped into the water, and I turned to the table to arrange some of my kit.  “I think I need to push”, said Dani, and I turned around, to see Dani slightly raised up in the pool, and another sensation, but quieter this time, as a beautiful little golden baby swam out, and up into his mother’s arms, at 4:24 am, the 27th of February. Colin was there, holding the space with perfect, gentle support, and I think he was teary when his so-very-wanted, adored, loved son emerged.  “It’s a boy!  He’s a boy!  Colin, he’s a little boy!”  exclaimed Dani, elated; euphoric. “I did it!  I did it.  All my dreams have come true.”  And that made me cry.

Colin and Gail helped Dani out of the pool and into the cozy bed.  Rylan and Norah woke up, and immediately gathered to adore and cuddle their tiny little brother, snuggling close to him and their mum, with dad and their grandmother too.  Everyone just stayed there, in that sacred place of witnessing: encountering their boy for the first time: son, brother, grandson.  The little baby nursed almost right away, and after the placenta was birthed easily, and the bedsheets were changed, we quickly weighed the tiny bundle, and he was almost seven pounds.  A beautiful, strong, perfect little angel.

I think it took Dani a few years to become comfortable with the idea of home birth, but when it came down to it, I don’t think I have seen a mother more centred, determined, or, at the moment of birth, more in tune with her body, or trusting of the experience.  

Love to you Dani, Colin, Rylan, Norah & Emeric


xo
Yo
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Cucumber Salsa

I recently went to a gathering at a friends house and this was served with tortilla chips! Mmmm! Needless to say, it did not last long! So delicious — I had to make my own! Colin, who doesn’t like cucumbers, even ate it! I call that ‘a hit!’ 

Ingredients:

-dice 3 cups cukes, half cup tomatoes, half cup celery, half a cup red onion

-half cup fresh parsley, minced

-one jalapeno pepper diced

-half cup fresh cilantro, minced

-5 garlic cloves, minced

-half cup Greek yogurt

-half teaspoon of lime juice

-salt and pepper

-feta [optional]

Combine & stir ingredients. Set in fridge for one hour. Serve with tortilla chips or add to bed of salad greens.

Serves 5+ people!

Happy snacking!

 

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Homemade Apple Crisps

Rylan has recently tried apple crisps (a.k.a. dried apple slices) at her school in Knowlesville and they have been the rave ever since.  On a recent trip to the SuperStore, she spots them and begins to beg and plea for this small container with the goods, which – might I add – has a price tag of $5.99.  I usher her away and informed her that they are, in fact, just as easy to make at home!  And so this is exactly what I have attempted today!  Won’t she be thrilled once she gets home?  Most certainly.  :)  And I know the apple-cinnamon aroma lingering throughout our third floor apartment is certainly delightful enough!

Ingredients:
– apples, thinly sliced
– cinnamon (optional)
– nutmeg (optional)

Procedure:
1. Set oven on bake, at 200 degrees.
2. Place thinly, sliced apples on parchment paper.
3. Sprinkle spices onto to apple slices, if desired.
4. Bake for 2-4 hours remembering to flip the slices half way through time.

Enjoy (the smell that lingers and your delectable treat)!

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Do I need to boost my immunity?

It is self-evident that during any active infection, the need to support the immune system to fight off viruses and bacteria is important.

There are also many health conditions and symptoms that let us know that our immune system isn’t working as well as it should be. It can be weakened, overly responsive or causes too much inflammation in the body. Those that are at the top of the list include:

  • Frequent colds and flu (more than 2 per year).
  • Colds and flu that linger for many weeks.
  • If you find yourself saying, “I never get sick”.
  • Chronic congestion in the nose, throat or sinuses.
  • Colds and flu that turn into deeper infections (ie. lingering coughs as in pneumonia and bronchitis) or other respiratory infections (e.g. sinus or ear infections).
  • Allergies (food, seasonal, environmental).
  • Herpes outbreaks (cold sores or shingles).
  • Persistent fatigue.
  • Recurring Candida yeast infections (vaginal, oral, digestive, or skin).
  • Digestive disorders (ie. celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome).
  • Inflammatory disorders (ie. Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, rheumatoid arthritis, Etc.).
  • Any autoimmune condition (ie. celiac disease, certain thyroid disease, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, Etc.).

Contact Dani by phone  506.323.0727, Facebook or E-mail to schedule an appointment in an effort to boost your first line of defense against illness and infection – your natural immunity!

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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups of pumpkin w. skin removed, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1/4 cup of softened butter or coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup of pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp of natural vanilla bean powder or extract
  • 1 1/4 cups of coconut or buckwheat flour
  • 1 tsp of aluminum-free baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp of unrefined sea salt
  • 2 tsp of cinnamon powder
  • 1 bar of 70-85% dark chocolate chopped into chunks

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 355 degrees Fahrenheit/180 degrees Celsius.  Rub in a couple of tbsp of melted coconut oil over pumpkin. Roast the pumpkin for 45 mins or until soft.  Allow to cool slightly.
  2. In a bowl, mix in the pumpkin pieces, butter/coconut oil, maple syrup and vanilla. Sift in the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Combine well to form a smooth batter.  Stir through your chocolate chunks.
  3. Grease baking tray w. coconut oil and spoon tablespoon sized rounds onto tray, 1 inch thick.  Bake for about 15-20 mins. They will still be soft; the underside should become golden brown.
  4. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack before storing in an airtight container, in the fridge.

Cookie recipe adapted from The Food Matters Recipe Book.

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Chicken Broth

Ingredients:

– 1 whole chicken (I purchase free-range and organic from our local market)

– water (to cover chicken in pot)

– herbs (summer savory, oregano, basil & minced garlic)

– sea salt

– onions (optional)

Procedure:

1. Place thawed chicken in pot and cover with water.

2. Add herbs.

3. Boil, with a cover, for 45 minutes or until meat falls easily from the bone.

4. Remove from heat and remove bones and meat.

In the past I have used this broth for making chicken rice, as soup stock (just add veggies) or drank it on its own when I felt a bug coming on.  It’s definitely my go-to “food” when I am feeling under the weather.  It freezes well, also.  To freeze, I fill a quart mason jar 3/4 full, leaving room for it to freeze and place it in the freezer. (Made the mistake of filling the quart jar full one time and the pressure caused the glass jar to burst in my freezer). This last time I made broth I also put the bones in a bag in the freezer to be reboiled and used another time.  I will let you know how I make out.

So not only does chicken broth taste great but the gelatin rich broth is full of minerals and other nutrients that help liver function, aid in digestion and allow bone and teeth health to flourish (just to name a few benefits)! To learn more, Weston A. Price Foundation has a great, but long article with many of the health benefits of consuming broths called, Why Broth is Beautiful .  Enjoy!

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Sweet Pink Beet/Carrot Pulp Cookies

Ingredients:
-1 cup of coconut oil
-2/3 cup of brown sugar
-2 eggs
-2 tsp vanilla
-1.5 cups of Speerville Flour Mill Pharaoh’s Favorite Mix
-2 cups of beet and carrot pulp

Directions:
1. Combine oil and sugar.
2. Beat in eggs and vanilla.
3. Stir in Speerville Flour Mill Pharaoh’s Favorite Mix and pulp.
4. Use spoon to transfer dough to cookie sheet & bake at 375° for 20-30 mins or until desired tenderness!

image

Cookies! (not raw hamburger)

Enjoy!

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Dr. Seuss Inspired –Egg Salad Sandwich

So your child enjoys egg salad sandwiches but you want more for them, health-wise then bread, boiled eggs & mayo [which contains a list full if less than desirable GMO’d ingredients]. I suffered from this dilemma and Dr. Seuss gave me the answer (the clever fellow). Think green eggs… That’s right! I combine boiled eggs with 1/2 an avocado instead of mayonnaise and Rylan approves. In fact that’s what she is having tomorrow for lunch [her request] along with a sliced orange, a carrot sans dip & water.

Feel free to add minced onions to the egg & avocado, if you think your child will eat it.

Healthy lunches shouldn’t be complicated or stressful.

This is a great way to get protein & healthy fats into your child’s diet.

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A Guilt-Free, Chocolatey Treat

If you are anything like me then you occasionally crave a treat and sometimes it’s even chocolatey in nature.  …Then the guilt sets in and we ask ourselves, “Was that really worth it?” For me the answer is often, “No.”
HOWEVER, I stumbled upon this recipe on a website entitled ‘Sustainable Baby Steps’ and have already prepared it twice this week, GUILT-FREE. The first time I shared it with some lovely ladies at a Birth Talk meeting, where I gave a brief presentation on eating for conception, pregnancy & breastfeeding, with raving reviews! This time, I have tweeked the recipe and added the following ingredients: walnuts, sesame seeds & coconut shavings and Miss Rylan approved.

Ingredients:

-1 cup of Organic, Coconut Oil

-3/4 cup of Organic, Raw Cacao Powder

-1/3 cup Organic Raw Honey

-1 tsp Vanilla Extract

-Dash of Sea Salt

-Optional – almonds, walnuts, coconut shavings, seeds, strawberries, etc.

Procedure:

1. Begin by melting the Coconut Oil & Honey. Using a glass measuring cup containing Coconut Oil and Honey submerged in a boiling pot of water (temperature= medium) is what worked best for me. (Be sure that no water gets into the measuring cup).

2. Once Coconut Oil & Honey are completely melted add Cacao Powder, Vanilla extract & sea salt and mix well.

3. Place optional ingredients in a glass dish and pour “chocolatey treat” on top.

4. Place in freezer for approximately an hour to harden.

5. Remove from freezer and store in fridge.

6. Be sure to share with friends!

This recipe is an enjoyable way to receive your healthy, saturated fats & nuts. :)

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