Portland Birth & Lifestyle Family Photographer Blog

Masha Georgiev is a TOP RATED professional photographer specializing in all aspects of lifestyle and outdoor family portraiture in Portland Oregon. Call us today! 503.875.0461

Portland Birth & Newborn Photographer | Baby Milana 1 Month New

Sometimes it's simply not possible for Moms to get into the studio right away. And because of this, sometimes my newborns are, well,,,,, not newborns anymore. But that does not stop me from taking amazing photos! I loved photographing little Milana. Her big blue eyes were fixed on my and my camera the whole time! I bet when she grows up, she will love her photos just as much as her Mom and Dad did!

To book your Newborn, Birth, or Family session with Masha Georgiev Photography please call 503.875.0461

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Portland Maternity Photographer | Bree's Winter Maternity Session : It's a Boy!

Bree and Bryndan are going to make such amazing parents to their little boy! The two of them share an enviable love with one another and are just so at ease in each others arms. While shooting they were laughing, joking, and hugging. Sweeter words have never been uttered and I love being witness to such affection. They are both so blessed to have each other and I’m so happy to share these images with you all. portland-family-photographer-5

There is so much anticipation right around this time. Every day you wonder if it’ll be the day you meet your little one. And then one day he comes and you can’t remember what life was like before he came into this world.

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Bree and Bryndan, I am so incredibly excited for you both and I can’t wait to meet the little one!

To book your Maternity Session please call 503.875.0461

Portland Oregon Birth Photographer | Now Booking 2017 Birth Photography Clients

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EARLYBIRD OCTOBER SPECIAL: Book anytime during the month of October and receive 20% OFF ANY SESSION! Book now by emailing mashagphotog@gmail.com

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TO BOOK YOUR SESSION PLEASE CALL 971.220.2630 

OR EMAIL

MASHAGPHOTOG@GMAIL.COM

Oregon Birth Photographer | PCOS and Infertility

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This is something that is near and dear to my heart. Being a PCOS sufferer myself, I wanted to write about this for a while.  My TTC Journey

My dear husband and I have been TTC for over 5 years now. Without getting into too much details, my story is that I have PCOS. I ovulate sometimes. And I have suffered 5 miscarriages. I have a 12 year old son, however sadly he's not my husbands son. We have been TTC ever since we said "I do". It's been a rough journey, with so much sadness. Only a couple who have gone through this can understand it. 

I think many women don't realize that being able to have a baby is something that women are made for, and when a woman cannot do this, she feels "broken". PCOS breaks you. It messes with your hormones. It messes with your body. It messes with your mind. And sometimes, it destroys families. I am happy to say that my dear husband is very understanding, and does not see me as broken, nor does he feel like I am inadequate. He understands that PCOS is impartial, and his wife has it. 

The reason I wanted to write about PCOS is that so many women today still have no idea what PCOS is, what the symptoms are, what the causes are, and how they can manage it. So I wanted to gather some useful links to sites that are a great resource for every woman with ovaries.

The following information is taken from : http://natural-fertility-info.com/pcos-fertility-diet this is by far my favorite PCOS and Feetility informational websites.

Causes of PCOS

Signs, Symptoms & Risks

Tests & Diagnosis

Menstrual Cycle Irregularities

Medical Options

PCOS Diet

Natural Therapies

Summary

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome may be one of the most complex female health issues of our time. It is the most common endocrine disorder in women of reproductive age. PCOS is accompanied by a variety of different health issues, many of which directly impact fertility. Classic PCOS presents with obesity, polycystic ovaries (multiple ovarian cysts that look like a strand of pearls), elevated levels of androgens and absent or irregular menstrual cycles. Not all women who will go on to be diagnosed with PCOS will have these issues though. What Causes PCOS?

Doctors are unsure of what causes PCOS, but information suggests there are several links including genes, possible abnormal fetal development, insulin resistance and inflammatory response contributing to the cause. We know that insulin resistance plays a key role in PCOS, but what leads to the development of this has not been pinned down. PCOS is also negatively affected by diet, lifestyle and exposure to certain environmental toxins. PCOS directly impacts fertility, but has serious health implications as well, especially if left untreated. Genetic Predisposition and Abnormal Fetal Development

Women whose mothers, sisters or grandmothers had PCOS are at a higher risk for developing PCOS. Research suggests that exposure to excessive amounts of male hormones (androgens) by the developing fetus may alter proper gene expression. This means that the affected genes will not function correctly later in life, which may cause PCOS during the reproductive years of a woman’s life. A recent, first of its kind genome-wide association study of PCOS has identified two areas of DNA that leave women of European ancestry susceptible to developing PCOS. The researchers also found one region of susceptibility in the DNA of Chinese women. Of particular interest was one area of DNA that contains the gene for the hormone FSH (follicle stimulating hormone). This finding provides evidence of disruption of the pathway that regulates FSH and in turn ovarian function which plays a crucial role in the development of PCOS. The human genome project has allowed researchers to pool more than 700,000 genetic markers from the DNA of thousands of women with PCOS. This is what helped them identify regions of genes associated with PCOS.

“For a number of years, researchers had been thinking that it was testosterone produced by the ovary that was a major problem in PCOS, but our study did not find signals for genes regulating testosterone… In contrast, we did find a signal for the FSH gene, which is produced in the pituitary gland at the base of the brain. This suggests that FSH, in either how it acts on the ovary or how it is secreted, is very important in the development of PCOS. This is a new way of thinking about the biology of PCOS.”

– Dr. Andrea Dunaif

Researchers are planning on mining the DNA of women of African ancestry with PCOS next to see if there is a shared genetic basis for PCOS over other ethnicities. Doctors plan to use all of this research to identify girls who may be at-risk for developing PCOS and create a medical treatment protocol to cure it. Another interesting study of 235 women with PCOS sought to discover if there is a link to the development of PCOS later life that may be influenced by factors beginning in the womb. The women were divided into two groups. The groups were categorized by: 1. obese women with elevated androgens, elevated LH and testosterone, and 2. by thin to normal weight women with elevated LH and normal levels of androgens. The results of the study showed a pattern in both the mothers weight and baby’s birth weight and fetal gestation time. The women in group 1 had above-average birth weight and were born to obese mothers. The women in group 2 were born after 40 weeks gestation. The conclusion was that events occurring during fetal development may have long-term effects on endocrine function later in life. Insulin Resistance

Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas and is responsible for signaling cells in the body to function correctly, most importantly to convert glucose to energy and to control their growth. It also plays a key role in the metabolism of carbohydrates, lipids and proteins. Insulin resistance happens when the body’s cells become resistant to the effects of insulin. When this happens, higher levels of insulin are needed so that insulin can have the proper effects. At this point, the pancreas must overcompensate, working harder and harder to produce more insulin. Insulin signals the ovaries to secrete testosterone and inhibit hepatic sex-hormone binding globulin (SHBG) production which leads to an increased level of circulating testosterone. This is why many women with PCOS experience acne, facial hair growth and male pattern baldness (hirsutism). Excess insulin in the bloodstream also signals the ovaries to release more estrogen which can suppress ovulation. Low-grade Inflammation

It has also been found that women with PCOS have low-grade inflammation, which may be a cause for insulin resistance. White blood cells produce substances to fight infection, this is known as inflammatory response. In some predisposed people eating certain foods, or exposure to certain environmental factors may trigger an inflammatory response. When inflammatory response is triggered, white blood cells produce substances that may contribute to insulin resistance and atherosclerosis. Signs, Symptoms and Health Risks

Signs and Symptoms of PCOS Irregular menstrual cycles

Absent period

Anovulatory cycles

Abnormal mid-cycle bleeding

Excessive or heavy menstrual bleeding

Alopecia (balding)

Hirsutism (excessive body hair)

Acne

Acanthosis nigricans – a darkening of the skin in the armpits, back of the neck, or groin

Polycystic ovaries

History of ovarian cysts

Mood disorders

Obesity

Recurrent Miscarriage

Health and Fertility Risks Associated with PCOS Infertility

Menstrual cycle irregularities

Possible increased risk for endometrial and breast cancer due to unopposed estrogen

Cardiovascular disease

Diabetes

Gestational diabetes How is PCOS Diagnosed?

When PCOS was first discovered it was named Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome because of the presence of polycystic ovaries seen by ultrasound. Over time doctors began to realize that PCOS was a complex array of health issues. To date there is a push by doctors to change the name of this condition. “Patients read into the name and just think, ‘Okay, this is about my ovaries, it’s really not about anything else…’ But from a doctor’s perspective, the most worrisome aspects of the disorder are the long-term consequences, such as diabetes.,” said Dr. Melissa Goist, ObGyn. (Livescience, 2013). This led to certain criteria that must be recognized to be diagnosed with PCOS, rather than just the presence of polycystic ovaries. In fact some women with PCOS do not have polycystic ovaries. In order to be diagnosed with PCOS the following should be evaluated by your healthcare practitioner: Pituitary and Ovarian Hormone serum levels: Luteinizing Hormone (LH)

Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH)

Estradiol

Progesterone

Prolactin

Circulating Androgens: Free testosterone

Free androgen index (FAI): 17-hydroxyprogesterone

Sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG): 24 hr. urinary free cortisol

Dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEA-S)

Endometrial Biopsy

Glucose Tolerance Test

Thyroid Panel

Blood Lipid Profile Are you wondering what your test results mean? Please talk to your doctor in detail about what your test results mean for your fertility. Some doctors may tell you that you have mild PCOS. Women may have some or all of the symptoms of PCOS, some may have normal menstrual cycles and some may not. Testing is the best way to find out if you have PCOS for sure or not. Click here to learn more about the different presentations of PCOS… How PCOS Affects the Menstrual Cycle

What happens in a normal menstrual cycle? In very simple terms the hypothalamus produces GnRH (gonadotrophin-releasing hormone) which signals to the pituitary to produce LH (luteinising hormone) and FSH (follicle stimulating hormone). The release of GnRH is pulsatile in women with regular menstrual cycles. The normal pulsatile release of GnRh signals some of the follicles in the ovary to begin maturing and for the ovaries to release estrogen and progesterone. This estrogen/progesterone signal is recognized by the pituitary gland. As the follicles begin maturing they release and increase the hormone estrogen over time. The rising estrogen level signals the pituitary gland to curb the release of FSH. This communication allows for ovulation to occur. In women with PCOS the menstrual cycle follows a different pattern of endocrine function and communication. What the menstrual cycle is typically like in a woman with PCOS… In women with PCOS the menstrual cycle starts off irregular, with the hypothalamus releasing GnRH in a higher than normal pulsatile frequency. This allows for increased LH and decreased FSH, which in turn leads to excessive production of the androgens androstenedione and testosterone. This causes the follicle to only mature some, but not enough to achieve full maturity in order to be released for ovulation. This also allows for continued increase of estrogen, primarily estrone. During a woman’s reproductive years, estrone levels are relatively low. Typically we associate estrone with menopause, not the the fertile years of a woman’s life. The higher levels of androgens and estrogen create a chronic state of low to very low progesterone and anovulatory cycles. Classic polycystic ovaries are a result of chronic anovulation. Endocrine function is imbalanced from the very beginning of the menstrual cycle causing mild to severe hormonal imbalance, depending on the individual. Excessive levels of estrogen may also cause uterine hypertrophy, also known as endometrial hyperplasia. Unopposed estrogen may cause excessive cell proliferation of the endometrium. The endometrium is the innermost layer of the uterus that is shed as menses during menstruation. Endometrial hyperplasia may cause heavy menstrual bleeding or prolonged bleeding during menstruation. The uterus may become bulky and larger than normal. Medical Options for PCOS

Anovulatory Cycles Oral Contraceptive Pills (birth control) are the number one most prescribed medication to regulate menstruation in women with PCOS. While this may help to create a regular menstrual cycle (which is important) it prevents pregnancy. This is not helpful for women with PCOS who are trying to conceive. OCPs do not solve the root of the problem and may actually cause long-term reproductive health problems.

Other hormonal medications may be commonly used as well. This is determined by case. Clomid is commonly used for women with PCOS to hyperstimulate the ovaries to ovulate. Once again the problem we encounter here is that Clomid does not resolve PCOS, though it may help a woman to get pregnant. Ovarian drilling done by laparascopic surgery. This is done with the intent to stimulate ovulation. Insulin Resistance Metformin

This drug is commonly prescribed for women with PCOS, even if they are not insulin resistant or have any signs of type 2 diabetes. Metformin helps to control the amount of glucose in the blood. Metformin is used to treat type 2 diabetes. PCOS can often be helped by specific diet changes, similar to a diabetic diet. Metformin comes with risks and side effects, please talk to your doctor in detail before choosing to use Metformin to control PCOS. Many natural therapies may be used with Metformin with your doctor’s approval.

Note: Long-term treatment with Metformin has been shown to cause malabsorption of vitamin B12 in some patients. Before choosing to use this medication, talk to your doctor about the long-term goal and duration of treatment. There are a variety of other medications prescribed depending on the symptoms of PCOS. There are medications for hirsutism or alopecia, weight gain and more. Your doctor can provide you with specific information on medications. Learn to Eat a PCOS Fertility Diet

Eating a specific PCOS Fertility Diet is one of the best things you can do to improve your chances of becoming pregnant. Eating a specific PCOS Fertility Diet is one of the best things you can do to improve your chances of becoming pregnant.The biggest part of the problem with PCOS is insulin resistance. Resistance to insulin increases the body’s insulin levels which can have a negative affect on ovulation by limiting the maturation process of an egg and in turn delaying or preventing ovulation from taking place. Insulin resistance also makes it difficult for the embryo to attach properly to the uterus for implantation. This has a direct impact on your fertility and ability to conceive. Women with insulin resistance are 4-5 times more likely to have a miscarriage. PCOS is also a huge red flag for the beginning of type 2 diabetes. I do not say all this to scare you, but I do want you to know that this is a serious matter. Fortunately, there are many natural options you can do on your own to turn this all around. The biggest step you can take is to change your diet to a PCOS diet. The benefits of following a PCOS Diet are: Increases the rate of spontaneous ovulation

Significantly improves the environment of the uterus, preparing it for implantation

Increases the likelihood of a healthy conception

Decreases the potential for miscarriage

Helps to prevent insulin resistance from turning into diabetes

PCOS Diet Guidelines

1. Balance your daily protein intake with an equal amount of carbohydrates This will help to eliminate the insulin yo-yo. When you eat equal amounts of protein and carbohydrates this helps to keep your insulin at a balanced level, thus increasing your fertility. A low-carbohydrate, high-protein diet helped insulin resistance. A high-carbohydrate, low-protein diet made insulin resistance worse.

– Medical Journal Metabolism; no. 12: 1481-1487 A diet containing 25% carbohydrates improved insulin resistance, whereas a diet that included 45% carbohydrates did not.

– International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders; 20 no. 12:1067-1072 The types of carbohydrates you choose are also an important factor. Choose whole grain, or sprouted grain products. They contain more protein and fiber (better for balancing insulin levels) than their processed counterparts. Avoid processed carbohydrates, especially the white variety (white flour, rice, potato, etc.) which cause a spike in insulin levels and provide little to no fiber, or nutrients. Some examples of whole grain and sprouted grain products are: Ezekiel Bread Ezekiel breads

Spelt

Quinoa

Millet

Brown Rice

Buckwheat

Amaranth

The best place to find these foods are at your local health foods store or Whole Foods Market. Make sure the proteins you are eating are complete and organic. Organic meats and dairy contain essential fatty acids and will reduce the negative impact on hormonal imbalance. 2. Eat foods low on the glycemic index and glycemic load list Blood glucose rises and then falls when you eat a meal containing carbs. How high it rises and how long it remains high depends on the kind of carbs (glycemic index, GI) and the amount you ate (glycemic load, GL). Low glycemic index foods are carbohydrates that break down slowly in the body, and don’t cause such a dramatic spike and then drop in insulin levels. The glycemic load takes into consideration the amount of the glycemic index food you consumed and how that affects your blood sugar. The glycemic load combines both the quality and quantity of carbohydrate into one ‘number’. It’s the best way to predict blood glucose values of different types and amounts of food. The serving size of the amount of carbohydrates consumed really matter here. Be sure to eat no more than 100g of low glycemic index carbohydrates a day if you have insulin resistant PCOS and are overweight. Increase the amount of low glycemic index carbohydrates consumed a day to over 100g if you are thinner or underweight. Some examples of low glycemic index foods are: Kale, broccoli, asparagus

Beans and lentils

Grapefruit and apples

Walnuts and almonds

Processed carbohydrates that break down quickly make insulin levels jump dramatically. Avoid foods that have a high glycemic index such as sugary and starchy foods such as: pancakes, syrups, sugar, white potatoes, jams, scones, white bread products, pasta, soda, alcoholic beverages. Click here to learn how to make low GI fertility smoothies friendly for PCOS… 3. Eat a diet high in fiber Fiber helps in two ways with PCOS. The first way it helps is by slowing down the digestion of sugars in the body, so there is no spike in insulin. The second way fiber helps is by promoting healthy estrogen metabolism which aids in the reduction of elevated levels of androgens. Great sources of fiber are: broccoli, celery, whole grains, Ezekiel bread, apples, and dark leafy greens. 4. Eat 5 meals a day PCOS portion size plateBy eating more often, the body will not go into fasting mode. When you look at the way most Americans eat, it is usually three big meals a day. With such a large gap of time between meals the body goes into fasting mode which may cause the metabolism to become imbalanced. Your five meals a day should consist of three regular meals and two healthy snacks, or 5 small meals. The first snack should be eaten in the mid-morning before lunch and the second snack to be eaten less than an hour before bed. At each meal a day be sure you are eating a serving of protein (3-4 ounces), a low GI/GL carbohydrate (1/4-1/2 cup or serving size), and vegetables (1 – 1 & 1/2 cup). Here is what the 5 meals a day could look like: Breakfast (right away, when you wake up): 2 eggs scrambled in 1 tsp. coconut oil with spinach and 1/2 cup of black beans

Snack: Smoothie with unsweetened coconut or almond milk, 1/2 of a peach, 1/4 tsp. of ground cinnamon, hemp protein powder and spirulina

Lunch: Organic Turkey lettuce wrap with celery sticks and hummus on the side

Dinner: Organic chicken with steamed broccoli and half a cup of baked yam

Snack (less than an hour before bed): organic unsweetened yogurt with half a serving of low glycemic index fruit (blueberries, raspberries, papaya) and 1/2 tsp. chia seeds

Alternately, you could have your last snack between lunch and dinner, eating your dinner right before bed. Find out what works best with your lifestyle. 5. Eat essential fatty acids daily Eating essential fatty acids (EFA’s) helps you to lose weight, aids hormonal balance, and are important building blocks for the body to create a healthy environment for conception. The best source of omega-3 EFA’s is Cod Liver Oil, and omega-6 EFA’s is Evening Primrose oil. Cod Liver Oil– Take 1 capsule daily with one of your meals. Cod Liver Oil is a rich source of DHA which is essential for a developing baby’s brain health. You can take this daily and during pregnancy. Evening Primrose Oil– Take 1500mg of this oil from day one of your cycle (menstruation) till ovulation. Evening Primrose Oil helps to increase cervical mucous and metabolic function. Use in addition to flax or cod liver oils. 6. Exercise for 30 minutes, 5 days a week Exercise helps PCOS by improving insulin sensitivity, increasing metabolism and helping to shed any excess weight. Both aerobic and resistance exercises are good. Researchers found that participants of resistance exercises showed better improvement in insulin sensitivity than with aerobic exercise alone. Avoid excessive exercise programs because too much exercise overworks the adrenal glands which increases inflammation and in turn makes PCOS worse. Restorative exercise programs are best. You could walk and lift weights, or take a Pilates class and run on the treadmill, or do some Zumba and then Fertility Yoga. Discover what you enjoy doing and do this 5 days a week for at least thirty minutes a day. 7. Eat Organic You will be eating a high protein diet, so it is essential that any animal proteins (meats and dairy) you are eating are organic. In commercial meats there are large amounts of added hormones (estrogens) that make the animals grow bigger, faster, and produce more milk. With PCOS there is usually a progesterone deficiency and adding more estrogens can make it even worse. Studies have shown that organic foods contain more vitamins, minerals and healthier proteins. 8. Quit Coffee Caffeine increases estrogen levels. A study from Fertility and Sterility shows that drinking just two cups of coffee a day boosts levels of estradiol, a natural estrogen. Women who drink 4-5 cups of coffee a day produce 70% more estrogen in the follicular phase of the menstrual cycle (when the body is trying to produce a viable follicle for ovulation, which is already an issue for women with PCOS.) If you need help getting off the bean, check out Teeccino. It is a coffee alternative that tastes great and is alkalizing for the body. Click here to learn more about Teechino and other herbal coffee alternatives…

PCOS Herbs and Supplements

Important note: It takes at least 6-12 months of consistent lifestyle and diet changes, along with natural therapies to bring about real change in the body when living with PCOS. In addition to eating the PCOS diet, supplements have shown to be effective in helping those with PCOS boost their fertility and give birth to healthy babies. The overall goal with PCOS is to balance blood sugar levels, maintain hormonal balance, promote healthy digestion for improved estrogen metabolism, while also working to promote regular ovulation and menses. Adaptogen herbs are also important, this is because adaptogens increase resistance to mind-body stress and enhance overall vitality and health through non-specific adrenal (known as stress glands) support. Plants recognized as adaptogens help to normalize the body’s functions, most importantly the endocrine system, even during diseased states, are non-toxic, nutritive, and have been deemed safe for long term use. Herbs and supplements are not meant to be a substitute for dietary and lifestyle changes! If diet and lifestyles changes specific to PCOS are not in place, herbs and supplements cannot aid the body properly! Supplements That Are Beneficial for PCOS… Whole Food Multivitamin

A major part of decreasing the effects of PCOS on your health and preparing the uterine lining is to take a prenatal multivitamin. Making sure your body has all of the nutrients necessary is a lot easier when you are taking a whole food multivitamin. Synthetic multivitamins won’t have the same effect. Other vitamin and mineral considerations… Chromium

This trace mineral enhances the action of insulin. Some studies have shown supplementing with chromium may improve blood sugar control. In one study, women with PCOS were given 1,000 mcg per day of chromium for two months and in that time results showed improved insulin sensitivity by 30% in average weight women and by 38% in obese women with PCOS.

Foods that are high in chromium are onions, tomatoes, brewer’s yeast, oysters, whole grains, and bran. Most foods contain very little chromium, so supplementation may need to be considered. Calcium and Vitamin D

Both calcium and vitamin D play significant roles in the health of many parts of the body. Where PCOS is concerned, calcium protects cardiovascular health. Vitamin D plays a role in glucose metabolism. Studies have shown that people with type 2 diabetes are often deficient in vit. D. A small study of 13 women with PCOS showed that 7 out of the 9 who had absent or irregular menstrual cycles, had a return of normal menstrual cycles within two months after being given 50,000 IU once or twice per week of vitamin D and 1,500 mg per day of calcium. This is a marked improvement! Of the 13 women, 5 were shown to be vitamin D deficient. Good food sources of vitamin D are cod liver oil, eggs, salmon, mackerel, tuna and whole fat yogurt or other dairy products. Vitamin D can also be obtained for free by sitting out in the sun for 15 to 20 minutes per day. Forget using sunscreen it will actually block the ultraviolet light that is needed to produce Vitamin D. The warm sun helps your skin to create Vitamin D3 that is then transformed into the active hormone form of Vitamin D by the kidneys and the liver. In fact, by being out in the sun for just a few minutes a day, a woman’s body can create between 10,000 to 25,000 IU of Vitamin D. Calcium can be found in kale, turnips, collards, mustard greens, kelp and wakame seaweed. Hiziki, a type of seaweed has 10 times more calcium than a glass of milk. Herbs and supplements that promote hormonal balance and support regular ovulation: Cod Liver Oil Again, cod liver oil is a rich source of omega-3 EFA’s. Eating omega-3 essential fatty acids can help to lose weight, balance hormones, and creates a healthy environment for conception. Omega-3 EFA’s have been shown to aid hormonal regulation and reduce inflammation. Licorice root (Glycyrrhiza glabra) Licorice root helps the body to maintain proper hormone production and release. Licorice also supports healthy insulin levels and liver health which is important for women with PCOS. Maca (Lepidium meyenii) Maca works to balance estrogen and progesterone in the body which may help to encourage a healthy menstrual cycle. Maca is an adaptogen and an incredible fertility superfood. It helps to balance the hormones, but does not contain any hormones itself. It is able to do this by nourishing the endocrine system. Vitex (Vitex agnus-castus) Vitex (Chaste Tree Berry) is one of the most powerful herbs for women’s fertility and menstrual health. There are numerous studies and testimonials of Vitex and its effects on the body. Vitex supports hormonal balance in the body by having an effect on the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis (hormonal feedback loop), correcting the problem at the source. Tribulus (Tribulus terrestris) Tribulus has been found to help encourage regular ovulation in infertile women when used prior to ovulation. This herb has been found to be wonderful in aiding women with menstrual irregularities, improving the timing of the entire menstrual cycle. Tribulus has also been found to be a nourishing tonic for the female reproductive system as a whole, especially concerning the ovaries. White Peony (Paeonia lactiflora) and Licorice Rt. (Glycyrrhiza glabra) Most clinical trials have found that when White Peony is combined with Licorice Rt., it performs better, especially for relaxing muscles, reducing painful menstruation, as well as lowering serum and free testosterone levels in women with PCOS. Natural Progesterone Cream Progesterone cream can help to oppose estrogen dominance that may occur in some women with PCOS. Through the topical application of progesterone cream one can mimic a natural cycle and help the body to establish its own cycle, including ovulation, once again. Dr. John Lee believed that with progesterone cream, along with changing to a PCOS specific diet and regularly exercising, PCOS could become obsolete. Healthy Estrogen Metabolism DIM DIM balances the hormones and aids in the breakdown of estrogen. Estrogen is a major culprit to many of the fertility issues women face today including PCOS. Unopposed estrogen has been shown to cause menstrual cycle irregularities and in more advanced cases, endometrial hyperplasia. Removal of excess estrogen is vital to overall hormonal balance in women with PCOS. Insulin Resistance Cinnamon (Cinnamomum spp.) A pilot study published in 2007 by Fertility and Sterility showed cinnamon to greatly reduce insulin resistance in women with PCOS. Another study suggests cinnamon may also reduce insulin resistance by slowing the movement of food from the stomach to the small intestine. This slows the breakdown of carbohydrates, which is important for people with diabetes and women with PCOS. Gymnema (Gymnema sylvestre, G.sylvestris) Gymnema has been used for hundreds of years to reduce high blood sugar. This herb has a “sugar blocking” action on taste buds and the small intestine. Gymnema blocks the typical paths that sugar molecules take during digestion, delaying the absorption of sugar. It works by stimulating the regeneration of pancreatic cells that produce insulin, which aids in more insulin production; in turn stimulating production of enzymes that help with the uptake of glucose into cells; and then prevents stimulation of the liver to produce more glucose. Gymnema also appears to have a lipid-lowering effect, which aids in weight loss. Hirsutism and Endometrial Hyperplasia Saw Palmetto (Serenoa repens) Saw Palmetto has been found to inhibit DHT production by reducing 5 alpha-reductase production, which may help prevent hirsutism in women with PCOS. This herb also helps to reduce endometrial hyperplasia and hormonal acne symptoms. To purchase a harmonizing herbal blend supportive of hormonal balance click here… Inflammatory response

Because women with PCOS usually have low-grade inflammation constantly present in the body, it is important to support the body by promoting a healthy inflammation response. Some foods are known to trigger inflammation in the body. If you have food allergies, avoid foods which you are sensitive to because they trigger an inflammatory response. Omegas Omega essential fatty acids decrease the risk of inflammation, especially omega-3 and 6. Getting enough essential fatty acids in the diet may help, both through foods you eat and through supplementation. Systemic Enzyme Therapy Systemic Enzyme Therapy or using systemic enzymes is another option. Systemic enzyme blends work as a biological response modifier; working with the bodies own immune defense system to moderate inflammatory response. They also break down the proteins in the blood that cause inflammation. Royal Jelly and Bee Propolis Royal jelly and bee propolis have been shown to reduce inflammation and naturally boost the body’s immune system. They may also aid in hormonal balance through endocrine system support. Click here to learn about other herbs helpful for women with PCOS…

Summary

PCOS is a complex female health issue. It consists of many different health concerns and risks. If permanent diet and lifestyle changes are implemented, these risks and health issues may become obsolete. There are many ways to support the proper health of a woman’s body that is dealing with PCOS. Important key tips… 1. Make sure your doctor performs the correct tests and you get a proper diagnosis. 2. Follow a PCOS specific diet to help decrease insulin resistance, balance weight, and improve estrogen metabolism. 3. Promote hormonal balance and support regular ovulation through supportive herbs and supplements. 4. Support a proper inflammatory response. 5. Stick to your plan, believe in yourself, only you have the ability to change your circumstances!

Oregon Birth Photographer | Hello Baby Girl!

Scared. Worried. Nervous. Excited. These are all the emotions I remember feeling when I realized I "this was it!" I remember thinking to myself "at the end of this day, I will be holding my baby in my arms."

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Milk Bath Session MODEL CALL

Michelle-13  

-Seeking a Maternity Model to photograph a “Milk Bath Session” in exchange for 5 professionally edited high resolution digital images.

-Must be 30-36 weeks pregnant.

-Must fill out and sign model release form.

-Must have big enough bathtub with natural window light.

-Must be available to photograph within the next two weeks for the session.

Email mashagphotog@gmail.com with “Maternity Model” in subject line.

Please include a full length photo of yourself, and your due date.

 

Photo Credit: http://www.chelseahaworthphotography.co.nz/services

Portland Birth Photographer | One contraction, at a time....

Los Angeles Birth Photographer

One contraction, at a time...

I came across this article on babycenter.com and wanted to share with all of you. Many feel that epidural is the only way to relieve contraction pain. However many moms who have gone through labor, have commented on these successful natural pain techniques.

In addition to pain medication and epidurals, moms have lots of natural pain-management tricks up their sleeves. We surveyed more than a thousand moms to learn how they eased their labor pain. Here's what they had to say.

Breathing Exercises

A full three-quarters of BabyCenter moms used breathing exercises to ride out those contractions.

  • I found that blowing out deep breaths really helped me get through the contractions.
  • The contractions were very intense and breathing through the pain was very helpful for me.
  • It felt like I had to take all my energy and focus it, especially during the tough contractions. If I moved or lost focus on my breathing, I felt like I lost control of my body and the pain would take over.

Position changes

Half our moms found that a simple change of position helped relieve the pain. (Exercise balls can be great for this – a quarter of BabyCenter moms used one).

  • Don't be afraid to move around, walk, sit on a ball, or whatever, it progresses labor faster.
Learn about your options for labor, birth, and after, and make your wishes clear.

Rocking

Many moms rocked their way through contractions.

  • I got through it just one contraction at a time, through breathing, rocking, and moaning.

Walking

If you're up for it, try a little walk. It helped about one-third of the moms in our survey.

  • I definitely recommend walking to help with labor and delivery

Massage

Don't underestimate the power of a good massage – be it your back or your feet!

  • I packed a rice heating pad, which was amazing for my back labor.
  • A handheld massager was very useful in early labor when the pain was in my back.
  • My husband rubbed my feet with aromatherapy lotion. I was in heaven.
Learn massage techniques you can use during labor, like "nerve strokes" and the "double hip squeeze".

Soaking in the tub

Almost one-fifth of BabyCenter moms got some watery relief.

  • I spent the majority of my labor in the bathtub, which helped manage the pain and also relaxed me.

Visualization

Got a nice beach in mind? Go to it during contractions. You can also try visualizing labor before it happens.

  • The biggest advice I have is to envision labor in your mind beforehand. I prepared by telling myself that it's going to hurt, but it won't last forever... like a tattoo.
  • Take yourself somewhere else mentally during contractions.
Moms share how they made it through the toughest moments of labor.

Music

If you're a music lover, try a few tunes for natural pain management, as 14 percent of our moms did. (Looking for some song ideas? Check out our labor playlists).

  • I packed my MP3 player and used it while in labor. The music helped me relax and took my mind off the contractions.

Article credit: http://www.babycenter.com/0_moms-say-top-pain-management-techniques-during-labor_10339940.bc

Masha Georgiev Photography | Portland Oregon Birth Photographer

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Dear Fabulous Blog Readers!

I have another announcement for you.

Sadly, I will not be booking any more photography sessions in California. I will now be working solely in Portland Oregon and surrounding cities.

I am grateful for all the friends I have made here in Los Angeles. Some of you started out as clients, and quickly became more. Many of you have taught me so much. I am grateful to have worked with you, and to know you as a person. I will strive to keep in touch with all of you. You know who you are.

This is a happy announcement. And don't forget, I do travel. So if you need me in any part of the world, just contact me and we will work something out!

-Masha Georgiev, Birth Photographer

mashagphotog@gmail.com

Providence Portland Birth Photographer | Preparing for a Hospital Birth: What All Moms Need to Know

Los Angeles Newborn Photographer Does your idea of delivery comfort have less to do with the bed you’ll give birth in, and more to do with the medical backup you'll have on hand? If so, a hospital is probably the most comfortable choice for you — putting you in good company.

Giving birth in a hospital is by far the most popular choice of expectant couples in the United States. It’s the choice for women who have what’s considered a “high-risk” pregnancy (e.g., if you’re 35 and over, are pregnant with multiples or have conditions like gestational diabetes). It also offers the most options in terms of who can make your delivery: While most birthing center and home births are attended by midwives (certified or direct entry), your hospital birth can be overseen by an OB-GYN, a family physician or a certified nurse-midwife (96 percent of CNM deliveries are, in fact, in regular hospitals). Doulas are welcome, too.

Just as there are pros and cons for every choice you'll make when it comes to your childbirth experience, there are pluses and minuses when it comes to having your baby in a hospital.

ADVANTAGES OF A HOSPITAL BIRTH

Some of the plus-sides of a hospital birth include:

  • It’s the safest option. If you're at high risk, it's the safest childbirth environment for you and your baby. Ditto if an unforeseen complication arises during labor (such as a prolapsed cord or placenta abruption, for example).
  • It’s close to an operating room. If you need a cesarean section (either planned or emergency), it's the only place you can have one. And you won't have to be transferred mid-labor if it looks like you'll need one — you'll just have to move from your birthing room to the operating room.
  • It offers the most advanced technology. On-staff pediatricians and, in many hospitals, sophisticated newborn medical technology are available should your baby need immediate medical care.
  • You have easy access to pain relief. Anesthesiologists on staff are almost always available to provide pain relief medications as you request, from epidurals to narcotics.

DOWNSIDES OF A HOSPITAL BIRTH

Some of the disadvantages of a hospital birth are:

  • Hospitals, especially larger ones, can seem impersonal and intimidating. Taking a tour ahead of time can help you feel more familiar — and more comfortable — at your hospital of choice. Keep in mind, though, that more hospitals, even those big ones, are doing more and more to have a "family-friendly" feel in the labor and delivery wing.
  • Even private rooms aren't that private. There's a lot of coming and going in hospital rooms — it may often seem like there's a round-the-clock revolving door of residents, nurses and other hospital staff members hovering around your bedside. You can expect to get less rest, too, at a hospital for the same reason ("time to check your blood pressure again").
  • Separations are often routine. Even if you've chosen to "room-in" with your baby, there will be times when hospital routines will separate you, including for newborn screenings.
  • Hospital policies rule. Though hospitals are more open to birthing alternatives than ever before (if only to keep up with the demands of expectant parents who've come to expect more), they're bound by protocols and procedures — which means you will be, too. Still, chances are good that with the help of your practitioner you'll be able to create a birth plan that gives you the birth experience you want, even in a hospital setting.

Without a doubt, hospitals have come a long way since the days when deliveries took place in cold, uncomfortable, sterile delivery rooms. Today, the equipment's still sterile (and that's a good thing), but the surroundings are typically far from it. If your hospital has an official policy of family-centered maternity care (many do), you can expect birthing rooms that are comfortable and homey, designed in warm, soothing colors, with all the medical necessities at hand (but hidden behind armoires), dim lights, private bathrooms (including showers and/or baths that can be used for hydrotherapy relief during labor), and ample space — including sofa beds — for family members and your birth coaches (your spouse, a doula etc.).

FINDING THE RIGHT HOSPITAL FOR YOU

It’s never too early to start researching hospitals — especially at some of the more popular facilities, which may have a limited number of spaces in their labor and delivery suites. Check online and ask friends for recommendations. A few things to consider:

  • Is the hospital in your insurance network? Although the Affordable Care Act now requires all insurance plans to cover maternity care, the deductibles, coinsurance, copayments or similar charges for each service can vary, up to an out-of-pocket maximum for in-network providers. If you’re out of network, however, the charges can skyrocket.
  • What amenities does the facility offer? Consider the type of birth you’re hoping to achieve. If you’re hoping for a more natural birth, for example, does the facility offer or allow birthing tubs? If price is less of a factor than convenience, you may also want to consider if the facility offers labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum (LDRP) rooms, where instead of moving between several rooms from labor through recovery you’ll stay put.
  • What’s the C-section rate? Rates of C-sections can vary widely from hospital to hospital, from 7 percent to nearly 70 percent, so it’s a good idea to look into your hospital’s rates online (here is a good source to get started). If your hospital of choice has particularly high rates, you can ask why when you visit the hospital.
  • Does the facility support breastfeeding? If you’re planning to breastfeed, you may want to check if your hospital is a certified “Baby-Friendly Hospital” (see the full list here). The Baby-Friendly certification means the hospital follows World Health Organization and UNICEF guidelines to support mothers in successful breastfeeding, including allowing mothers and infants to room together 24 hours per day. Don’t fret if your hospital isn’t on the list either: Just be sure to ask about breastfeeding assistance your hospital offers when you take your hospital tour.

Finally, take a tour of the facility you’re most interested in using, if possible at around week 30 to 34 of pregnancy. This will give you a chance to ask questions, clear up the smaller details and meet some of the staff who will be assisting you on D-Day.

THE COST OF A HOSPITAL DELIVERY

Your hospital will work with your insurance company to determine what your co-pay will be. While the Affordable Care Act guarantees some low- or no-cost prenatal and infant care, insurance companies vary on the amount charged for your hospital care and stay during labor, delivery and recovery. How much you pay out-of-pocket depends on factors including treatments needed for you and your baby, the facility at which you deliver, your health insurance and more.

Source Material: http://www.whattoexpect.com/pregnancy/hospital-birth/

Photographer: Masha Georgiev Birth Photography

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Portland Oregon Home Birth Photographer | Preparing for a Home Birth

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As a Portland Oregon & Los Angeles Home Birth Photographer I often get asked "Do you think I should have a Hospital or a Home Birth?"

While this is a very personal decision, that should be made between you and your partner, I wanted to jot down how the two differ, and some of the pro's and con's for both. So here we go!

In this post I will start with a Home Birth.

What happens during a planned home birth?

During a planned home birth you'll give birth in your home instead of in a hospital or birth center. You'll need to be assisted during labor and delivery by a knowledgeable midwife or, in some cases, a doctor to help ensure the health of you and your baby.

During your prenatal care your health care provider will review a list of conditions during pregnancy and labor that would require treatment by a doctor and compromise the safety of a planned home birth. Your health care provider will also review the challenges that can occur during childbirth, how he or she — in comparison with a hospital — would handle them, and the possible health risks for you and your baby.

During labor, your health care provider will periodically — rather than continuously — monitor your temperature, pulse, blood pressure and your baby's heart rate. After delivery, you'll be close to your baby. Your health care provider will examine your newborn and determine whether he or she needs to be transferred to a hospital. In addition, your health care provider will give you information on how to care for your newborn. Follow-up care might include home visits and lactation support.

Why do women choose planned home births?

You might choose a planned home birth for many reasons, including:

  • A desire to give birth in a familiar, relaxing environment surrounded by people of your choice
  • A desire to wear your own clothes, take a shower or bath, eat, drink and move around freely during labor
  • A desire to control your labor position or other aspects of the birthing process
  • A desire to give birth without medical intervention, such as pain medication
  • Cultural or religious norms or concerns
  • A history of fast labor
  • Lower cost

Are there situations when a planned home birth isn't recommended?

A planned home birth isn't right for everyone. Your health care provider might caution against a planned home birth if you:

  • Have diabetes, chronic hypertension, a seizure disorder or any chronic medical condition
  • Previously had a C-section
  • Develop a pregnancy complication, such as preeclampsia
  • Are pregnant with multiples or your baby doesn't settle into a position that allows for a headfirst delivery
  • Are less than 37 weeks or more than 41 weeks pregnant

What might cause the need for a hospital transfer?

During a planned home birth, you might need to be transported to a hospital for monitoring or treatment. Your health care provider might recommend transfer to a hospital if:

  • Labor isn't progressing
  • Traces of fecal waste (meconium) appear in your amniotic fluid
  • The placenta peels away from the inner wall of your uterus before delivery (placental abruption)
  • The umbilical cord drops into your vagina ahead of the baby (umbilical cord prolapse)
  • You have vaginal bleeding not associated with bloody show
  • You don't deliver the placenta or it's not delivered intact
  • Your baby shows signs of distress, such as an abnormal heart rate

Your newborn might also need to be transferred to a hospital if he or she has breathing problems or signs of a medical condition.

What are the possible risks of a planned home birth?

While most pregnant women who choose to have planned home births are at lower risk of complications due to careful screening, planned home births are associated with double to triple the risk of infant death than are planned hospital births. Still, even with that increase, the overall risk of infant death is low.

How do I prepare for a home birth?

You can prepare for a planned home birth by:

  • Choosing trained health care providers to assist. It's important to choose a certified nurse-midwife, a certified midwife or a doctor who has a formal relationship with a health care system overseen by your state health department or The Joint Commission. Make sure he or she has easy access to consultation with doctors or specialists at a collaborating hospital. If you're interested in additional physical and emotional support, consider hiring a doula — a professional labor assistant. The American Academy of Pediatrics also recommends having present at least one trained person whose primary responsibility is caring for your newborn.
  • Creating a birth plan. Where do you plan to experience labor and delivery? Will you use any specific methods to cope with pain? Do you want a water birth? Will you breast-feed your baby immediately after delivery? What other support people will be present? Discuss the details of your birthing plan with your health care provider. Ask your health care provider what kind of supplies you'll need to provide, such as towels, sheets or other protective coverings for your floor or mattress.
  • Preparing for a hospital transfer. Discuss with your health care provider the signs and symptoms that might necessitate going to a hospital and how a hospital transfer will affect your birthing plan. Ideally, your home or other planned birth location is within 15 minutes of a hospital with 24-hour maternity care. Make sure you have access to transportation. Ask your health care provider to make arrangements with a nearby hospital to ensure that you can be promptly transferred and treated, if necessary.
  • Choosing a pediatrician. Plan a medical exam for your baby within a few days of birth.
  • Arranging for postpartum help. After delivery, you might need help caring for yourself and your new baby. Arrange for family or friends to help. A doula can also provide postpartum support.

What else do I need to know about a planned home birth?

With careful planning, a home birth can be a positive and rewarding experience. Keep in mind, however, that life-threatening problems can occur during labor and delivery without warning. In those cases, the need to transfer you and your baby to a hospital could delay care, which could put your lives at risk. Understanding the risks and benefits of a home birth can help you make an informed decision about how you plan to give birth.

STAY TUNED FOR MY NEXT POST: PREPARING FOR A NATURAL HOSPITAL BIRTH

HAPPY SNAPPIN!

-Masha

Source material: http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/labor-and-delivery/in-depth/home-birth/art-20046878?pg=2

Photo: Midwife from the Santa Clarita Valley Birth Center attending a home birth http://scvbirthcenter.com

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G07VHJhgkmE

Photographer: Masha Georgiev Birth Photography

Yosemite CA Photographer | Half Dome and Yosemite Valley

Every year my family and some good friends pack up our stuff, and take along 5 hour drive up to Yosemite California. This is one of those trips that we look forward to all year long. When our trip is over, we are longing to do it again! Yosemite Valley itself, is a pretty busy place. It's buzzing with tourists, kids, and wildlife. But for me, it's a bit too crowded, so my family and I like to stay at the Wawona Campground. Wawona is about a 45 minute drive to Yosemite Valley. Not bad at all considering how beautiful the drive is.

Booking your campsite is another challenge. You only have 1 day out of the whole year to claim your stake and grab your spot! And you better be quick! If you're not ready to click the "RESERVE"button on the exact hour that it becomes available, chances are you either won't get a reservation at all, or you will not get the spot that you want. Regardless, camping in Yosemite is still our annual family tradition, and we will be trying to do it every year as long as we can.

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Here are some of the photos from this year's trip. I was particularly inspired by Ansel Adams. The black and white photos of Half Dome made me want to take a stab at trying to photograph in the same style. Here's my take at Ansel Adams.

-Masha

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Vancouver WA Birth Photographer | Birth Crowning

Grateful

As a Vancouver WA & Portland Oregon Birth Photographer, I am feeling grateful to have one of my crowning images featured on Kidspot.com/au

 You can view "The moment before time begins 20 images of baby crowning" HERE.

My image is the 4th image in the gallery.

Thank you to the strong Mom who pushed with all her strength, and invited me to capture and share this moment.

-Masha Georgiev

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Portland Oregon Birth Photographer | Nursery Must Have

Portland Oregon Birth Photographer QUICK POST

Okay so this is not really birth related, but then again, it kind of is. I wanted to share this adorable little nursery print with all of you expecting parents out there. It's customizable and just so sweet. Anyway check it out for yourself!

 

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https://www.etsy.com/listing/385129936/sleep-well-little-oliver-printable?ref=shop_home_active_4

Portland Oregon Birth Photographer | Birth Session

*WARNING* This post contains images of Birth, and is for mature audiences ONLY. Readers may find these photos graphic. Thanks for stopping by, fellow photo lovers!

I have a special treat for you today, and it comes in the form of a cute newborn named Odessa. She came into this world on May 10th, 2016 weighing 8 pounds  4 ounces and measuring in at 21 inches long.

Her parents, invited me to take pictures of the birth at their home. What an honor to capture such a pivotal turning point and special moment in their lives. I know they will treasure these pictures forever.

Little Odessa is just as darling as can be. Capturing her little chubby cheeks, tiny feet,  and cute sweet face was so much fun. What a sweetheart!

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As a Portland Oregon Birth Photographer, I truly feel grateful & honored that her parent's asked me to be a part of this special day. Thanks again, you guys!

Check out the cutie for yourself, below. (Click any image to see full size)

 

Until we meet again!

-Masha Georgiev, Los Angeles Birth Photographer

Source: https://mashageorgievphotography.files.wor...

Portland Birth Photographer |Birth Announcement

Dear awesome/amazing/loyal/world's best blog readers! As a Portland Birth & Newborn Photographer, I get to hang around lot's of adorable babies! Today's post is all about a certain baby with the kind of  chubby cheeks that will surely put a smile on your face. Miss Odessa was so much fun to photograph and our session turned out so perfectly!

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This particular session was a very special since Jessica, Odessas's Mom, brought along some personal items to make this birth announcement. The items added a whole other level to our photo shoot and I love how they photographed, as well.

Odessa is so adorable. She was this perfect sleeping beauty. Sometimes babies just don't want to go to sleep, and sometime they are perfect. This was one of those times. I couldn't have asked for a better session!

You'll see what I mean below!

My job seriously rocks!

-Masha

 

 

Portland Oregon Birth Photographer | Umbilical Cord, have you seen it?

As a Portland & Gresham Oregon  Birth Photographer, whenever I share an image of a baby still connected to his or her umbilical cord, I receive more engagement than almost any of my other posts. There is POWER in seeing how we nourished and sustained our child.

There is UNDERSTANDING that comes from seeing/touching/acknowledging the cord that pulsed life.

One of my biggest 'birth regrets' is that I didn't get to see my own umbilical cord when I gave birth to my son. It was cut before I had time to think or ask. I'm so happy that more and more providers are giving mamas the space and the time to appreciate their cords.

Did you have the opportunity to look at and examine your umbilical cord? What did it make you think or feel?

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Portland Oregon Birth Photographer | How to prepare for your baby's birth

As a Portland Oregon Birth Photographer, many of my clients often wonder what it's going to be like having a baby? Consider this your indispensable guide to prepping yourself in those final days before the birth. Here’s what to check off your to-do list: Los Angeles Birth Photographer, Pasadena Birth Photographer, Hospital Birth, Tarzana Hospital Birth

Learning to breathe

Maybe just as important as the techniques they teach you in birthing class are the friends you meet. Lamaze class is a great place to connect with other couples with babies the same age. At my class, we saw a few graphic videos, learned a few breathing techniques, and got a bunch of numbers. I’m not sure how much we used the techniques we learned, but going to Lamaze class each week helped me feel as though I was getting more prepared.

Pack it up

That due date has been on the calendar since your first visit to the doctor, and too often we count on that day as if it will really be the day. But unless you’re having a scheduled C-section, it’s more than likely you will have an early arrival or a delayed departure. So don’t panic if it’s a week past your due date. And be prepared a few weeks before, just in case. If you’re planning to give birth in a hospital or birthing center, pack a suitcase so you can feel as comfortable and relaxed as possible.

Make sure you pack your own camera and an extra disposable one. It’s important to have this just in case your camera runs out of batteries or the shutter breaks—this has happened to people I know, so always carry a spare!

Also remember the following: makeup, travel sizes of your shampoo and conditioner, toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant, travel razor, hair brush, and lip balm.

Things you will thank me for reminding you about: your favorite energy bars, crackers, and bottled juice water; breath mints; your address book with all of the phone numbers of people you might want to call.

Best laid plans

By now you may have heard a lot about a “birth plan.” This is simply an outline of how your ideal birth scenario would go. It’s important that your doctor be aware of your desires. I am all for outlining your wishes and working toward making them a reality, but just be prepared that things don’t always go as planned.

Keep in mind that a successful birth results in a healthy mom and baby. Period. Whether you want an epidural, hospital birth, water birth, or natural, get all the facts, do your research, know your options, and talk to your doctor and other moms. Don’t let anyone discourage you or encourage you to go against your instincts. But don’t be afraid or upset if you have to change course. Have your plan; envision what you would like, but keep an open mind. The ultimate goal is to feel confident and prepared for your big day.

Speaking of being prepared

Many doctors and hospitals will encourage you to fill out all of your paperwork and consent forms a few weeks before the big day. The last thing you will want to do as you breathe in and out of contractions is fiddle with insurance information. I wish I’d known of this option. I arrived at the hospital six centimeters dilated, and delivered less than two hours later. I would have signed just about anything at that moment. So if you can, pre-register.

What happens in the delivery room…

Stays in the delivery room! What they don’t tell you in birthing class is that you may poop, pee, or fart while you’re pushing. It’s part of the process sometimes, and your doctor is used to it. Don’t worry or think too much about it if it happens to you. Know this: It is perfectly normal.

You never know how your body or mind is going to react at any given time until you’re put in the situation. Calm, genteel women have turned into cranky lionesses, and you may yell, scream, or say things you don’t mean or later feel bad about. I would issue a simple disclaimer to everyone who is going to witness the “miracle of birth”: It might be laced with a few profanities or some unsightly things, and you are not responsible for what comes out (of either end!).

Baby bliss and blahs How to prepare for your first babys birth

You may fall in love with your little one at first sight, but be prepared if you don’t— for some new moms, the feeling may take awhile. Lack of sleep combined with the fact that your body is adjusting to a hormonal tidal wave and the loss of the baby inside of you make it natural to feel a little “blue” or out of sorts right after the birth.

Nearly 75 percent of new moms experience the “baby blues,” but don’t worry, it usually goes away after a few weeks, and each month it gets better. If it doesn’t get easier, contact your doctor. It could mean you have postpartum depression; it affects 10 to 20 percent of new moms. If you feel this has a hold on you, talk to your loved ones and doctor. They will get you the help and resources you need to overcome it.

After giving birth, I didn’t feel sad, per se, so much as numb, emotionless. I was diligent about making sure my son had all of his needs met, but I wasn’t feeling that connection. I was a robot or a walking zombie, and this made me feel guilty and confused—why wasn’t I feeling baby bliss? It wasn’t until a few weeks passed that—out of nowhere—something clicked inside me. I still remember feeding him on the couch, looking into those little eyes, and it just hit me—this wave of intense love. I was awestruck and have been ever since. I haven’t told anyone that before, but I am telling you. So if the postpartum discomfort and the emotional stress have you a bit unraveled, be patient. The connection will come, it will get easier and easier, and you will feel more and more bonded. Relax and trust that.

Commend yourself

Before this pregnancy journey ends, give yourself credit for making it the best possible experience. You’ve lived through a deluge of information. You’ve survived the old wives’ tales and “good advice.” You’ve created a space for your baby and your partner and rearranged your home. And you’ve taken care of your body and mind. It’s pretty amazing you did it in such a short span of time! So while you’re waiting, why not write down in your journal how this transformation can carry you into the next episode of your life—going from Hot Mom-to-be to a Hot Mom!

Excerpted from The Hot Mom-to-be Handbook by Jessica Denay. Denay is a mom-lifestyle expert and founder of Hot Moms Club. She’s appeared on hundreds of TV shows and in dozens of magazines as an authority on everything “hot” for moms.

If you are looking for a Portland Oregon Birth Photographer, then contact Masha Georgiev Photography 818-636-2903 or email mashagphotog@gmail.com

Article shared from: http://www.pregnancymagazine.com/pregnancy/pregnancy-lifestyle/how-to-prep-for-baby?utm_content=32018129&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook

Portland Oregon Birth Photographer | Metal Prints

Display's with personality

Portland Oregon Birth Photographer

portland photographer

Metal Prints are waterproof, UV resistant, and made from 100% recyclable aluminum. Images are transferred using dye sublimation processing which makes your image a permanent part of the aluminum sheet to create an extremely durable product. Available in two finishes, various sizes and display options. Heirloom quality passed down from generation to generation.

Los Angeles Photographer

A Stunning Visual that Lasts

The brilliance of our Metal Prints is unparalleled! Using an innovative dye sublimation process, your custom images are printed directly onto high quality aluminum for a clean and lasting finish. Our Metal Prints show off vibrant colors in a way no other medium can. Your most captivating shots take on life-like depth and dimension for an impressive display that stands the test of time.

Your Custom Artwork Takes Center Stage in any Setting

Metal Prints give your home décor an ultra-modern feel. Brighten up any workspace with sleek, stylish, contemporary art. Create breathtaking scenes in a studio or gallery space. No matter where they are displayed, Metal Prints will steal the show!

Display one Metal Print for a dramatic stand-alone statement. Group any amount together for an attention-grabbing wall collage. We offer a variety of sizes ranging from 4x6 to 30x40 for endless display possibilities.

Available in two finishes

Masha Georgiev Photography

portland birth photohrapher

Customize Your Metal Print

Four Dynamic Finishes to Reflect your Style

White Base Metal Prints take your bright, vivid colors to the next level. The White with High Gloss has a luminous base with a reflective finish. Our most popular Metal product, everything looks great on this sleek surface. We recommend nature shots like landscapes, water, flowers, and animals. White with Matte Finish offers the same vibrancy without the reflective shine. White with Matte is also opaque and makes your colors pop. Portraits and wedding images look amazing on this smooth, satiny surface. Whether Glossy or Matte, our White Base is the best way achieve vibrant skin tones on metal.

Clear Base Metal Prints show the raw brushed metal through your image. Any white in your image will be clear on this metal, so the lighter your images, the more brushed metal texture will appear. Clear with High Gloss Finish has the same shiny, reflective quality as the white, but with a more metallic, translucent look. Clear with Matte Finish offers the same metallic look, but is non-reflective. Clear Metal Prints have a fresh, edgy feel to them. They make more industrial subjects like cars, motorcycles, and cityscapes look incredible.

Get the Hang of it

We offer several easy hanging options that enhance the look of your Metal Prints.

Choose an Inset Metal Frame, Metal Brackets, or Gatorboard backing for a modern unframed look. The Inset Metal Frame is our most durable backing option. We highly recommend it for large Metal Prints. The Inset Metal Frame is black, 1 5⁄16” in depth, and available for Metal Prints that are sized 15x30” and larger. Metal Brackets and Gatorboard are also durable backing options, each giving your Metal Print the appearance of floating ¾” out from the wall.

Showcase your art with ¼” or ½” acrylic and sleek standoff metal posts in each corner for an impressive, professional finish. Go more contemporary by skipping the acrylic and just adding the metal posts. Remember to keep key imagery and text at least 2” away from the corners for Metal Prints with posts so we don’t drill into important parts of your picture.

Small Metal Prints can be displayed on an easel without hanging hardware, but large Metal Prints are difficult to hang without backing or posts.

Mounting Options