The Loving Cedar, LLC

One of the most important jobs as a mama is caring for herself and the little one growing inside her. There are a huge mix of emotions during this journey. Especially when it comes to finding what you need or don’t need. 

I have created a list of great resources and books to help prepare you for a healthy mindful pregnancy! 

Following your natural instincts is a must, BUT it is also important to be prepared and have some knowledge of the new life transition that is ahead.  

This resource page is not only to help you prepare for pregnancy and parenting, but to help simplify life, so you can enjoy the much needed time with your kiddos before they run off to college!

Table of Contents: Helpful Resources at a click of a button!

From fantastic recommended websites to those much-needed essentials for Mama and Baby!

Website Favorites:

The list of websites I put together are just what I recommend. I am not affiliated with them, just a big fan. I believe they provide important information for pregnancy, birth and beyond!

Charleston Metropolitan Area Resources

Simply Shop My Favorites Here!

book of the month

The must have books!

  • The Birth Partner: One of my absolute favorites. I highly recommend this book. I still use it, and I always have an extra on hand for my clients. The book goes over preparing for labor and knowing when it has begun. Teaches normal labor and how to help the woman every step of the way. Talks about Epidurals and other medications for labor. Goes into the ever important Non-drug techniques for easing labor pain, and much more.
  • Birth Without Fear:  Another favorite of mine. Straightforward guidance, supportive and empowering guide to pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum. 
  • Hypnobirthing: a positive, natural approach to childbirth. This empowering method develops awareness to your instincts and ability to labor and birth.
  • Mindful Birthing: Training your mind, body, and heart!
  • The Whole 9 Months: nutrition, and week-to-week guide for healthy eating while pregnancy.
  • Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth: I love reading Ina May’s books, they are easy to read and so helpful. She is short, sweet, and to the point! She gives you everything you need to know about pregnancy and childbirth!
  • Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn: This is the complete guide to all that you need to know for the whole journey. If you were only going to buy one book, this should be it. I wasn’t much of a reader until after my kids, and oh boy do I wish I had these books when I was pregnant with them! 
  • Natural Baby and Childcare:  essential reference guide to conventional and holistic health options for baby.
  • Ina May’s guide to breastfeeding: another great one that she wrote. Very helpful for breastfeeding. Encouraging as well. I know sometimes breastfeeding can be frustrating, but it is totally worth all that goes into it. 
  • Breastfeeding Made Simple: This is my favorite breastfeeding book, I always recommend this one to my clients. 

Some added extras:

  • How to Heal a Bad Birth: I love this straightforward guide. It really helps answer the “why” questions, and how to move forward.
  • Heal your Birth Story: I love how Maureen Campion wrote this book. It is realistic, and teaches how to release those unexpected wounds that come up, even 10 years later. I know, some not so fun books, but they are a necessity sometimes. 
  • Babies Are Not Pizzas:  This book is by far my favorite read. I had to read this for one of my classes in Midwifery school. And I keep reading it over and over. Rebecca Dekker is spot on. I seriously felt like she was writing my birth story. This is also the book that got me wanting to read more books on healing. 

Fashion must haves! Super comfortable, high quality, stylish. Maternity and Nursing!

Simply Click on the green lettering below to find more colors and style options!

  • Leggings! Everybody loves leggings. Super comfy and versatile. Wear a comfy tank and long cardigan to dress up, or lounge at home with a favorite tee or sweatshirt!
  • Tanks! Finding clothes that are everyday essentials that grow with you AND can be used after baby. Nursing tops are great for everyday comfort. 
  • Nursing Bras! I know, not a favorite, but a must-have. Here are some of my favorite brands that I have used and love… Nursing bras come in different types, but I have found that a crossover is the most comfortable. 
  • Sweaters!  I know what you are thinking, “BUT I am pregnant and hot all the time!” Trust me, sweaters on the thinner side are great for chilly days. Plus, you can always take them off when you get too warm. I loved just snuggling down in my favorite oversized cardi on days I felt I wanted to have a little something extra on!
  • Long Sleeve tees! Check out the link for super comfy tees that go with everything. I lived in these during my last pregnancy… Maternity tops
  • Jeans!   I have found motherhood maternity jeans are my favorite. I also had a client that swore by Levi’s jeans! Not ready to give up your favorite jeans yet, but the bump is getting in the way? A belly extender is fabulous. Pro tip: I loved using the belly extender, but a rubber band looped through the buttonhole and around the button works excellently too. The nice thing about the belly extender is it is soft and hides the top part of your jeans. 
  • Active Wear!   Aways favorite.
  • Last but not least, dresses!! Especially during the summer. 

Fitness, Nutrition, and Health!

The Birth Ball: this is my number one favorite item for pregnancy, labor, childbirth, and beyond. I still use mine! 

  • At-home fitness: Let’s be honest here for a second. When pregnant, you don’t always feel like heading to the gym. But let me tell you, fitness is essential for a healthy pregnancy and overall health! Fitness helps prevent unwanted complications and excessive weight gain and helps improve sleep. At-home fitness videos are great, especially when you can’t go places. I highly recommend Fit2B. It is an overall approach to wellness. Check out free videos on YouTube as well!
  • Prenatal and postpartum tummy-safe workouts!  Let’s retake another honest look! Abdominal separation (diastasis recti) is common in pregnancy. Help strengthen your body while protecting your core.
Fit2B TummySafe Fitness
  • Prenatal Yoga: yoga can help relieve many different pregnancy-related issues! A good yoga mat is essential. Also, a knee pad can help save your knees, and I still use mine. 
  • Nutrition and supplements: Consult your provider before taking any supplements. In today’s world, supplements have become essential. Above all, nutritious foods come first, but sometimes they are only readily available. This is where supplements come in. They are not food replacements.  “An apple a day keeps the doctor away!” That saying is very true. Nutrition is the base of good health. 
  • Water, Water, and more water: Invest in a good water bottle because you need it! Pregnant, you want to aim for at least 2 quarts of water daily. Keep that favorite water bottle after pregnancy because you will want it while breastfeeding. Pro tip: You get super thirsty while breastfeeding. Keep a snack bin and water next to you for easy access. 
  • Oral Health: The importance of dental hygiene at a young age and during pregnancy can greatly impact a child’s future dental health; has created some great guides for parents and for moms during their pregnancy journey in helping them maintain good dental hygiene:

Labor and Birth Essentials

  • Rebozo: I love using a rebozo during labor and births.
  • Birth Peanut: the peanut shape helps when your birth ball is too large, and it is excellent for side lying with it between your legs to help open up your hips. 
  • Red Raspberry Leaf  Tea: helps your body prepare for labor.  This tea is also called third-trimester tea; I started drinking it around 36 weeks. Ask your provider about the recommended amount and when to start drinking it! 
  • Epsom Salt and Lavender: my favorite way to relax is taking a bath with Epsom salts and dried lavender. The salts are great for relieving sore muscles and helping prevent leg cramps. This is also a great time to practice deep, focused breathing! 
  • PeriBottle: I know, the hospital gives you one, and you think, “I won’t use that!” Think again; warm water is soothing on your perineum after the baby is born.
  • Robe/Gown: because nobody wants to wear that hospital gown!
  • (Read more on comfort measures and how to use these essentials…)

Baby Essentials

You don’t need to break the bank with the never-ending list of baby items. This is where registering comes in handy, especially for those items you want but don’t REALLY have to have. But there are some items you need. Things to add to the registry as well 🙂 

  • Diapers: a never-ending supply. Looking for cloth diapers? Click here.
  • Onesies: I recommend having at least 10-15 on hand. They are fabulous for hot summer days and an essential daily wear with anything.
  • SwaddleMe: I have found that babies learn very quickly that they like to be held, snuggled, and cuddled with ALL the time. The hard truth, mama, is you must just let the baby learn to soothe themselves sometimes. Swaddling a baby is not only a tremendous help to that but is a lifesaver for you. 
  • Baby Gowns: Great for wearing for easy diaper changes. With all the diaper changes happening, easy on-and-off clothing is essential.
  • Burp clothes: a must. Soft cloths for those little spit-ups.
  • The all-important car seat. There are many out there, and I feel that an image for these is important. Click on the images of the car seat you like to read more about. I have selected several that rate positive reviews, even ones clients currently use and love! Protip: Make sure to stop by your local fire or police station for a free car seat check and proper installation. It’s crazy how many people think they installed it correctly but didn’t. 
  • Receiving blanket: I would suggest having at least 5-6 on hand. 
  • Crib Sheets: I suggest having a few extras on hand. 
  • Boppy pillow: this is one of my favorite nursing items and great for tummy time. 
  • Sleep Sack:  a blanket with a zipper for easy nighttime diaper changes.
  • Bassinet: I recommend one that can sit beside your bed. Trying to get up and move around right after the baby is born is not easy, and try to keep it simple for yourself. 
  • Blankets: this is another item essential to having more than one on hand. Soft, cozy blankets for the car seat, stroller, or tummy time play! My daughter’s favorite blanket from birth is still tucked in her bed at night. And she is 11 years old. Blankets are special; they make you feel warm and safe!
  • Diaper Pail
  • Changing Pad
  • Baby Bath Seat
  • Hooded towels
  • Swing
  •  Wipes and a wipes warmer! Baby will thank you 🙂
  • Diaper bags! This is the fun part. I have chosen some different styles to fit your needs and likes. I also have one for dads! The diaper bag goes everywhere and gets dirty. I love having ones that wipe right off! (Read more on diaper bag essentials)

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