Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Seacoast New Mom & Baby Expo

Dover Doula is proud to once again sponsor the Seacoast New Mom & Baby Expo along with ChildLight Yoga and Garrison Women's Health Center.  This year's Expo will be on Wednesday, November 6th from 10:00am - 6:00pm at The Red Barn at Outlook in South Berwick, ME.  This is the 7th Annual Expo!
Dover Doula at the 2012 Seacoast Mom & Baby Expo

The Seacoast New Mom & Baby Expo is one of my favorite days of the year!  Not only do I get to meet hundreds of new moms and women who are pregnant, I get to catch up with most of the women and babies I've worked with throughout the past few years.  It's the best!

If you are pregnant or have a new baby and live in the Seacoast area, you have to come!  It's a great chance to meet many different local resources at once.  For instance, do you need a photographer for your maternity or newborn portraits?  At the Seacoast Mom & Baby Expo you can check out three:  TARA Photography, MAC Photography and Kelly Meyers Photography.  This will save you a ton of time doing research and you can enter to win a Free Mini-Maternity Session from TARA Photography (valued at $200!).

Besides photographers, there will be chiropractors, doulas, lactation consultants, healthcare providers, cloth diaper companies, preschools, financial planners and so much more!

Pregnant?  Learn about your options for 3D/4D Ultrasound from Diagnostic Ultrasound Suite, birth & postpartum doula care from Seacoast Doula Group, Dover Doula, Hound Hill Doula and Koru Care Postpartum Doula Services.  Prenatal yoga classes from ChildLight Yoga.

Are you a new mom?  Learn about mom and baby yoga classes and classes for toddlers from ChildLight Yoga.  Research non-toxic personal care products from Ava Anderson, financial planning from Primerica, childcare options with Little Tree Education and Seacoast Waldorf School.

A mom enjoys a free massage from
Starry Brook Natural Medicine at the 2012 Expo
(photo courtesy of TARA Photography)
Either way, come pamper yourself!  Enjoy a massage or treat yourself to lunch or a Mocktail from the Mocktail Bar sponsored by Great Bay Doulas.   There will be tons of free samples and giveaways as well as the chance to win a whole bunch of fantastic raffle prizes.

G.Willikers! FREE Toddler Play Area
(photo courtesy of TARA Photography)

Some highlights of the day include a private Nursing Nook sponsored by the lactation consultants from Goodwin Community Health.  A free Toddler Play Area packed with toys from G!Willikers .  Also the Stonyfield Farm Yogurt Truck will be on site from 12:00 - 3:00 pm handing out free samples for the kiddos.  Throughout the day, other snacks will be provided by Happy Family brands and LARABAR. You can also enter your babies into Z107's Cutest Baby Photo Contest.

Be sure to follow the Seacoast Mom and Baby Expo Facebook page for all the latest information and updates!

Friday, June 14, 2013

What dads-to-be want

I think it is a universal truth that most dads-to-be want to help their partners during labor.  But how?

I meet many dads-to-be who say they want to play an active role in the birth of their child.  And I meet tons of moms-to-be who tell me they don't need a doula because their husband is going to be their support person.  That is fantastic!  But, your husband has never done this before either.  And he probably hasn't read as many books as you have. :-) 

One of my favorite parts of my job is teaching the Yoga Birth Method to expecting couples.  I like to scan the room at the beginning of the class, because it sometimes seems like the dads aren't all that excited to be there.  However, they ALWAYS leave feeling empowered and excited for the upcoming birth of their baby.


Because in this workshop, I teach couples how to use yoga poses and breathing techniques to:
  • help labor progress
  • help you stay connected to your baby and each other
  • help manage pain

Moms-to-be learn yoga poses while the dads learn hands-on ways to assist each pose to offer comfort, encouragement and gentle support.

Dads-to-be leave with a "cheat sheet" that details what yoga poses work for each stage of labor.  They learn specific tools and this seems to really resonate with men.

To learn more and see upcoming dates of my workshops, click here!  

Darcy Sauers is a certified Yoga Birth Method instructor and a Prenatal Yoga teacher.  She is also a DONA certified Postpartum Doula and Certified Lactation Counselor.  Darcy teaches prenatal yoga classes and Yoga Birth Method workshops and private sessions in the Seacoast area of New Hampshire.  She is the owner of Dover Doula and a member of Great Bay Doulas.  Darcy lives in Dover, NH with her husband and three children.  For more information on  her upcoming classes and workshops, please visit  She can be reached at 603-988-5945 or 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

3 best ways to afford postpartum doula care

Whenever I meet someone new and tell them that I am a postpartum doula and explain what a postpartum doula does, they usually say something along the lines of, "Boy, I could have really used you!" or "I wish I could have afforded that."

And, when I'm working with pregnant women in prenatal yoga, I often hear "I really wish I could afford to hire you for when my baby is here".  With a little planning, you can!

I passionately believe that every new mom needs help.  We no longer live in a society where the women of the village come  help you after your baby is born.  The reality is that now we need to hire postpartum doulas.  New moms need to feel supported and taken care of.  New moms need rest and healthy snacks and meals.  New moms need help with breastfeeding and laundry.  It is impossible to do it all, all by yourself.

So, here are my tips for the three best ways to afford postpartum doula care:

1.  While you're pregnant, set aside some money each month to be put towards postpartum doula care.  It can be $25 or $100 per month, whatever you can make happen.  For instance, take whatever you used to spend each month on sushi, lunch meat and wine and save that for hiring postpartum doula support once your baby is here.  Think back to your wedding and how much time, effort and money you put into making that a special day/weekend/time.  The birth of your baby and YOU deserve that same attention now!

2.  Register for it!  Your friends and family really do want to give you a gift that you need and will use, so give them the opportunity to provide you with quality postpartum support.  This also ensures that you don't end up with four wipes warmers or gear that you will never use.  Include a link to my website on your registry or in your shower invite.  Please contact me if you'd like some cards specifically designed to pop into your shower invitations.  Loved ones can purchase gift certificates for you right on my website.

3.  Call your health insurance provider.  Many of my clients have had success with getting postpartum doula care and lactation support reimbursed by their insurance companies and even their Flex Spending Accounts.  Call yours now to see what they will cover.  If they do not, write a letter with details about why you especially need support (c-section, multiples, no family around, health condition etc.)  Also, see if your health care provider will provide you a prescription for postpartum doula support.  

Call me today to set up a free prenatal consultation so we can discuss your particular postpartum needs and ways we can work together to make it affordable.

Darcy Sauers is a certified postpartum doula, certified lactation counselor and the owner of Dover Doula ( in the Seacoast, NH area.  She is passionately committed to helping ALL new moms find the support, resources and information they need.  Please do not hesitate to contact Darcy with any questions at darcy @ or 603-988-5945.  For more information on breastfeeding, the postpartum period, prenatal yoga or local resources and events for new moms, follow her on Facebook.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

5 Tips to Surviving the Holidays with a Baby

  1. Let go.  This is not the year that you are going to “wow” everyone with homemade cookies and crafts or the perfect gift that you spent hours shopping for or making.  This is the year that all you have to do is show up and let your baby wow them!
  2. Buy yourself a new sweater.  Go out and buy yourself a nice baggy sweater that makes you feel beautiful.  Maybe one with a turtle neck and something sparkly to draw the eye away from your postpartum belly, dark under-eye circles, and leaky boobs.  Then put it on over your pants with the expandable maternity belly and your best nursing bra.  No one is looking at you anyway, but it is important to feel beautiful!
  3. The baby IS the gift.  This year, tell Aunt Mary that her gift is fifteen minutes alone with your baby.  Trust me, she’ll be psyched.  And, you’ll get to go to the bathroom by yourself.
  4. Enjoy all the extra hands.  Surrender to the fact that your baby is going to be exposed to a bunch of germs.  Embrace it and let all your loved ones hold your baby all day while you enjoy such luxuries as eating with two hands, talking to another adult and not having spit up on your shoulder.
  5. Take lots of pictures.  And take pictures with YOU in them too.  Babies screaming on Santa’s lap are my favorite.  They don’t have to be beautifully staged or feature the three of you in matching outfits.   They just have to capture these precious moments of your first holiday season together.  And your new sweater!

Darcy Sauers is a certified postpartum doula, certified lactation counselor and the owner of Dover Doula ( in the Seacoast, NH area whose holiday wish is that moms would just cut each other some slack.  She is passionately committed to helping ALL new moms find the support, resources and information they need.  Please do not hesitate to contact Darcy with any questions at darcy @ or 603.988.5945.  For more information on breastfeeding, the postpartum period, prenatal yoga or local resources and events for new moms, follow her on Facebook.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Help for moms with twins

How does a postpartum doula support mothers of multiples?

"What a gift it was to have you come to my house after the birth of my triplets.  It was such a relief to know that I could take a nap or enjoy a little 'me' time and know that my babies were in loving and capable hands.  I tell every pregnant mom I meet about Dover Doula and I highly recommend your services.  I can't even begin to tell you how wonderful you and your services are.  Thank you so much, Darcy!"        Becky in Dover, NH mother of triplet 

Every new mom needs help, but moms of multiples need extra help!  Many families expecting multiples are flooded with offers of help, which is wonderful.  Experienced help from a postpartum doula can be vital to these families.

The role of the postpartum doula is fluid. An important part of her role is to come alongside the parents and together decide what type of support they will need. Some families need educational support: breastfeeding, infant support, and how to care for the new mother. Others rely more on the non-judgmental emotional support that the DONA International postpartum doula has to offer. Still others have more practical needs – like feeding the family and running errands. Most families find that their doula provides all of these things, according to the needs that develop, as well as the ever-important communication between the doula and her clients. That said, prospective parents and their families sometimes wonder – just what will the postpartum doula do when she comes to my home?

A postpartum doula supporting a family with multiples might...
  • Provide hands-on education on infant multiples and mother care
  • Provide hands-on education and support for tandem nursing, pumping and feeding of multiples
  • Create a nurturing, restful atmosphere in which parents may eat, shower and nap
  • Prepare snacks and meals, make sure mom is well hydrated
  • Assist with laundry, dishes, meal preparation and other light household chores to allow mom & dad to focus on bonding with new babies
  • Spend time with the babies, allowing parents to cuddle and have quality time with older children or just be alone together
  • Introduce parenting tips, helping parents to learn skills that will enable them to cope with their new responsibilities
  • Screen for hurdles such as breastfeeding challenges or postpartum mood disorders
  • Make referrals to any local or informational resources that the parents might need
  • Help to organize the nursery and home
  • Offer a listening, non-judgmental ear 
Additionally, families expecting multiples are often faced with financial challenges as well, especially if babies have to spend extended time in the hospital, and they feel they can't afford a postpartum doula.  If you have a friend or family member expecting multiples and you are wondering how you can help, please consider a Dover Doula gift certificate.  Contact me for more info.

Darcy Sauers is a certified postpartum doula, certified lactation counselor and the owner of Dover Doula ( in the Seacoast, NH area.  She has experience helping families with twins and triplets and is passionately committed to helping ALL new moms find the support, resources and information they need.  Please do not hesitate to contact Darcy with any questions at darcy @ or 603.988.5945.  For more information on breastfeeding, the postpartum period, prenatal yoga or local resources and events for new moms, follow her on Facebook.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Breastfeeding a baby with food allergies - a survival guide

My very first guest post!

I met Nicole Derr of NMD Photography and her adorable daughter Addison at a Mommy & Me group at the Noggin Factory in Dover in 2011.  As time passed, I admired her strength and determination to do what was best for her daughter.  I asked her to share her story of breastfeeding a baby with severe food allergies in the hopes that her story would help and inspire other new moms!


I Survived, and You Can Too!

I’ve been staring at this jar of Nutella for 15 months now, and tomorrow, I am finally going to open the darn thing up and dig in. Perhaps only the arrival of our daughter, Addison, has been met with more anticipation.

I’m here to attest to the fact that indeed, a desperate chocoholic like myself can in fact make The Ultimate Sacrifice for her child, every single day for said 15 months.

Here’s the backstory: (If you want the short version, just skip down to the Survival Food List and Survival Strategy List!) We welcomed Addison into the world on January 8th of 2011. Aside from being the World’s Most Beautiful Baby, she was such a dream at first; she was all cuddly and would nap for hours on our chests, and make these adorable little satisfied noises when she nursed. And then one night after a week or two, she cried inconsolably for two hours straight. And then the next night she cried for three hours. And then she started crying, at top volume, for hours, at any time of the day or
night. Being a first time mom, I was horrified and overwhelmed but folks kept telling me that it was common for babies to be “fussy” at night. The pediatrician said she was just fine. She just has a lot of gas. I should try to relax.

Addison’s screaming wasn’t fussing. It didn’t wind up gradually and peak and then die down. She would be sleeping soundly and awake with a start and a shrill shriek and then nothing-- not nursing, not Colic Calm, not bouncing, or swinging or swaddling or promising to buy her a unicorn would calm her. To me, it was clear that she was in pain.

And I felt utterly powerless to help her.

One day when Addison was four weeks old, a friend came over with her three month old. I absolutely couldn’t get my mind around the fact that her baby didn’t cry (beyond fussing to nurse) for the entire two hour visit. The whole time! Meanwhile Addie was having a particularly bad day and maybe stopped crying for 20 minutes of their visit. I decided to take matters into my own hands. I did some research and decided to go on a total elimination diet to figure out once and for all if Addison’s pain was being caused by something I was eating. I just didn’t buy it that one month old babies were typically this unhappy, or had diapers full of mucousy poop, or projectile vomited on a daily basis.

Eliminating all potential allergenic foods pretty much leaves you with meat, rice, vegetables and some fruit. I was a woman on a mission. I didn’t even use salt and pepper. I was totally clueless. And starving.

I figured it would just be for a week, just to see. No change. Ok two more days. Nothing.

Finally one day she had a poop that showed some flecks of blood, and at last our pediatrician began taking me seriously and scheduled an appointment for the next morning. The tested the stool and turns out it was chock full of blood. Digested blood is green. So my girl’s intestines were so irritated that they were bleeding and she was pooping it all out. Odd as it sounds, this was a relief for me: at last we are going to get somewhere with this and she is going to feel better. After having me collect her stool--
and enduring her pain-- for a week (I’ll leave the details of how to collect diariaah from a diaper to your imagination, and tell you only that it involves saran wrap and popsicle sticks) they finally referred us to a Pediatric GI specialist.

We drove out to Manchester to hear some pretty simple news: she definitely has a protein allergy. It is either dairy, soy or egg. Stop eating those and she will get better. Come back in three months. Nothing else you eat will have an effect or her. The reaction to these proteins builds up over time in the gut, so it’s not like giving them up for a week or two will have much difference. It has to be for good. (“For Good,” I thought, at this point, was until our recheck at 5 months). This was great news because
there were so many things that I could add back in, with wheat being the saving grace. However after the initial euphoria of eating bread wore off (bakery bread sans soy of course)... we were left with a major challenge.

I thank my lucky stars that my husband is so supportive of breastfeeding, and also that he’s such a good cook.(He’s the chef in our house, and I clean). While he didn’t have to live without butter, or cheese, or basically anything that comes in a box or a wrapper, he has gone to the end of the Earth to make my food life bearable. Prepared meals of quinoa, spinach and chicken in the fridge for my lunch. Pasta separated for me with my “special” butter on it. Bags of the “special” chocolate chips. It took us a while to compile the list of must have items for this diet, and once we got those staples, it was
really quite bearable. At home, except when I caught a glance of the dreaded Nutella jar, I rarely felt deprived.

Survival Food List:

Hannaford store brand bagels (select flavors only are soy free-- plain, multigrain,
sesame), Hannaford brand pizza dough- (You can make a decent cheese free calzone
with said dough. My fav was chicken and pesto), and Hannaford brand Stoned Wheat
Thin crackers
Enjoy Life chocolate (the dark is not half bad. The milk tastes like cardboard. I may
recant the “half bad” once I eat real chocolate again, but to me, it now passes as
Earth’s Best Soy Free Spread (find it at Market Basket or Wal-Mart)

Almond milk
Quinoa, rice, most pastas
Coconut milk ice cream (chocolate or vanilla. The others have soy). Try with fresh fruit
or with maple syrup on top.

Follow that with the Survival Strategy List:

Trust your Mother Instinct, even if you’re a first time mom. Get a second opinion.
Read labels like a psycho person and don’t necessarily believe people when they tell you something is dairy/soy/egg free. (Not on purpose, but people don’t realize the many forms that these ingredients can take, and that they’re in nearly everything. They also don’t realize that one bite of something with butter, for example, will have your baby up crying all night).
Avoid parties and gatherings where food is the center of activity. These will leave you feeling deprived, jealous, and bitter.
Find support. Friends, husband, a doula.
Figure out foods that still feel like “treats” and eat them regularly to keep from feeling like binging. You may have to shell out more money (ie coconut ice cream) but this is the key to keeping on.
Figure out dates with your spouse that don’t involve food. (This is no small feat. Everything seems to involve food).
Keep emergency snacks in your diaper bag since you can’t stop for a quick bite.
Remind yourself how lucky you are that your baby’s pain can be solved without medical
intervention, and think of this as a way that you can take care of them.
Remind yourself that this is not forever.
Remind yourself that hypoallergenic formula costs a fortune, smells like butt, and is mostly high fructose corn syrup. Not an option.

Now, Addison is 17 months old, and fully weaned as of last week. I came downstairs from putting her to bed without nursing, bawled in my husband’s arms for a few minutes, and then promptly dove in to eating a key lime pie complete with store bought crust.

The best part of the diet: the total awe and appreciation for food that comes when it’s over! And the weirdest part? It’s been over a week now... and I haven’t had a single bite of chocolate. I guess the hiatus curbed my cravings. But knowing that I CAN dip into that Nutella whenever it strikes my fancy? Priceless.

UPDATE:  Nicole just welcomed baby #2!  See the adorable photos here!

Nicole is the owner of NMD Photography.  Check out her work at

Do you need support around dealing with a baby with food allergies?  Dover Doula ( provides help with breastfeeding and postpartum doula services.  

Monday, May 14, 2012

Yoga Birth Method - Use Yoga During Labor

Are you starting to wonder how that baby inside of you is going to come out?  Interested in exploring natural childbirth and learning ways to manage labor pain naturally?  Check out my Yoga Birth Method workshops and learn to use the power of yoga breathing and poses to work with your body to manage the pain of labor and to help labor progress faster.

The Yoga Birth Method workshop is designed for pregnant women and their labor support partners.  At this workshop, you will learn a very specific sequence of breathing techniques and yoga postures that are adapted to the physical and emotional changes of the different stages of labor.  This will enable you to manage contractions from a calm, meditative and controlled perspective.

The Yoga Birth Method is for women who are interested in educating themselves about natural childbirth and empowering themselves during their own baby's birth.

This is a hands-on workshop where you will learn how to work with your body and connect to your baby during birth to take you out of the experience of pain and connect you to the experience of giving birth.

Benefits of the Yoga Birth Method:
  • Faster labor progression as the yoga poses encourage the baby's movement into the birth canal
  • Learn to remain focused and in control of your birth experience in a positive manner
  • A deep mother-baby connection as they work together during labor
  • Birth partners learn specific techniques to physically and emotionally assist the woman during labor

Click here to find an upcoming Yoga Birth Method workshop in Dover, NH!  Or contact Darcy directly to schedule a private, in-home Yoga Birth Method class for you and your partner. 

The Yoga Birth Method is a great compliment to Birthing From Within, Hypnobirth, Bradley or Lamaze class.  It is also a great fit for hospital births, home births and birth center births.
Darcy Sauers is a certified Yoga Birth Method instructor and a Prenatal Yoga teacher.  She is also a DONA certified Postpartum Doula and Certified Lactation Counselor.  Darcy teaches prenatal yoga classes and Yoga Birth Method workshops and private sessions in the Seacoast area of New Hampshire.  She is the owner of Dover Doula and a member of Great Bay Doulas.  Darcy lives in Dover, NH with her husband and three children.  For more information on  her upcoming classes and workshops, please visit  She can be reached at 603-988-5945 or