An interview with a doula

Have you heard this word: doula? Maybe you’ve heard your friends talking about them and you’re not quite sure what they do. We are here to fill you in mama!

I sat down with Ashley Slovitsky of Mama Bliss Birth Services, to find out just what she does and how she can help you with your next birth and breastfeeding journey.

NVS: First of all, how are you certified and what exactly do you do?

AS: I am a DONA birth doula. I offer a complimentary consultation-finding the perfect doula for you is incredibly important. Upon being hired, I provide 2 prenatal appointments at the family’s home. We discuss ways to cope with labor, techniques and methods I use, birth plan writing and other birth related topics. I’m available for advice via phone, email, text, etc. My on call period is from weeks 38-42 and once labor begins I will meet at the family’s home or place of birth for continuous labor support. Once baby is born, I stay for 1-2 hours following birth to provide any help that may be needed with breastfeeding. I provide photography and videography of the birth of desired. I also meet with the family within one week following baby’s birth to meet the sweet little one, provide the birth story I’ve written and any photos/video taken, and to make sure breastfeeding is going well. If any help is needed, such as suggestions for lactation consultants, I’m also able to provide resources. In addition to doula services, I also offer placenta encapsulation and tincture services. I offer special rates on placenta encapsulation for clients who choose to use me as their doula as well.

NVS: How do you help a new mother with breastfeeding those first few hours and weeks after baby is born?

AS:  I am a huge advocate for breastfeeding. I believe it takes patience and hard work, and sometimes it’s a learning curve for each mother and baby. I help to encourage immediate breastfeeding after birth and show moms how to help their baby latch. I explain different positions to use in feeding baby as well. If they are having trouble beyond my expertise, I have excellent resources to recommend for lactation support. At the in-home postpartum visit, I provide information regarding ‘normal’ newborn feeding guidelines, as well as to ensure any concerns or issues are addressed. Finding help immediately if you are having trouble with breastfeeding is incredibly important. We have some excellent local lactation support and I make sure every mom has their contact information if it’s needed. I also have extensive personal experience with tongue and lip ties, and can provide recommendations to providers of baby is diagnosed with a tie

NVS: How long have you been working as a doula and why are you passionate about it?

AS: I’ve been a DONA trained doula since November 2014. Previously, I had attended family and friends births with my knowledge of birth and ability to support moms during labor. I decided to ‘officially’ become a doula because I deeply believe in a doulas role. I personally know the difference in having a strong support system in birth, and for me that included doula support. I’m passionate about helping family’s to know that they have options and can make decisions regarding their birth. I’ve attended all types of birth in all settings which include hospitals, birth centers, and home births and I have experience with vbacs, medicated/unmedicated, cesarean, multiples, and surrogates.

Ashley takes between 2-4 clients a month all over the Valley from Avondale and Surprise to San Tan Valley and Apache Junction and every city in between.

You can read more about Ashley’s work (along with glowing client reviews) at her website


And she is offering $50 off a doula or placenta service for our fans, just mention that you saw this post.



The Breastfeeding Accessory All Moms Need- guest post


The  Breastfeeding Accessory All Moms Need-

 a guest post written by Grace Druecke, the owner of Oh Purple Panda

When my daughter was born I quickly realized the strength of grabby baby hands. She would quickly tug anything I had around my neck and, of  course, she pulled it straight into her mouth. I was worried she would hurt her hand, or worse, be exposed to a potential choking hazard. In order to protect her I gave up wearing jewelry, but I wasn’t happy.

So, I went to work creating soft and safe necklaces I could wear around her. With 100% cotton fabric and non-toxic wooden beads I made fabric necklaces that were safe for her to grab. I created the necklaces for the simple purpose of having something pretty to wear, but what I didn’t realize at the time is how useful they were during feedings.

Breastfeeding is tough. Even if the basics come easy, it’s the nuances that make it uncomfortable. The hair pulling. The face scratching. The de-latching from baby becoming distracted. The world around them becomes much more interesting than eating at times.  I struggled with all of these breastfeeding problems until I realized that simply wearing my new fabric necklace gave her something to hold onto, thus saving me from her grabby fingers.

Nursing necklaces have been helping tons of moms alleviate some of the discomforts of breast feeding. If you are struggling with a grabby baby it’s time to try one! It’s the easiest thing ever. All you do it wear it! And babies love them. They offer extra comfort anytime your baby is in your arms. Plus they are a lightweight statement necklace you can wear anytime.

I love sharing my necklaces with others. If you’re ready to try one, you can
find my perfected necklaces in my shop Oh Purple Panda.

And follow the blog here Fabric Nursing Necklaces for helpful tips and for the newest product updates you can follow  @shopohpurplepanda.

Also, since you’re an awesome supporter of AZ Breastfeeding Bags Project use code AZBFBP in the Etsy shop for 25% off any order. Happy Breastfeeding!

Grace Druecke

Owner of Oh Purple Panda, a company dedicated to making fabric nursing necklaces for moms.

Chiropractic care

Picture this: 8 months pregnant, big as a whale, so tired of my hips aching, my back aching and heartburn that never seemed to stopped. Finally, I listened to my friends telling me: go to a chiropractor! Ahhhh! The relief was immediate and my whole body felt better. In fact, I had to tell all my friends at prenatal yoga the next night: go to a chiropractor- it’s better than having sex!

If you are pregnant right now and want some relief, Dr. Jenni Bush-Hernandez at AFC Chiropractic and Physical Medicine at Desert Ridge can help you.

But don’t wait until you’re in pain! She will treat you the entire length of your pregnancy and also combats symptoms of constipation, ligament pain, headaches and sciatica. The office is a kid friendly non-toxic environment with a playroom where your older children can play while you get adjusted. Dr. Jenni supports breastfeeding moms (she is a working breastfeeding mom herself). She also specializes in working on babies and children. Did you know babies can suffer from “birth trauma”?’

I also called a chiropractor was when my son was about 6 weeks old. My baby cried and cried and was never settled. I heard from a friend how a chiropractic adjustment could help him; I made an appointment and took him in.  Within hours there was a change in him- he pooped and pooped and pooped! The next 6 diaper changes were poopy! No wonder he was in so much pain. Even a “perfect” birth can leave a infant with strain on their cranium or stress on their spine. Dr. Jenni knows this and is trained to feel those blockages and gently maneuver them out of the way. Chiropractic care on in infant is so gentle the babies do not even notice it.

Even if you are not pregnant or have an infant, a Chiropractor can help you in so many ways. The team at AFC Desert Ridge also treats

  • Neck and back pain
  • Sciatica or leg pain
  • Ankle, knee or foot soreness
  • Elbow pain
  • Headaches or migraines
  • High blood pressure
  • Sleep disorders
  • Chronic injuries
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Bursitis
  • Arthritis

AFC Desert Ridge is offering a special gift of health to our fans. You can receive and exam, consult and in office x-rays (if applicable) for only $20.00 Simply call them at (480) 563-1144 or online at Thank you AFC Physical Medicine and Chiropractic Centers and Dr. Jenni Hernandez for supporting the AZ Breastfeeding Bag Project!