Birth Roots offers Birth and Baby Care Class for Grandparents!

Birth Roots is offering a wonderful new class about childbirth and infant care specifically for grandparents!

“This 4 hour class will explore and discuss recent changes in childbirth practices, breastfeeding, safe sleep practices, and newborn care. Keep your newborn grandchild safe and strengthen lifelong bonds as you support your sons and daughters through this transition. Taught by certified Lamaze Instructor Janice Koepnick.”

The classes run in late April and May, and there’s currently an intro offer discount of 50%, making the class only $40.

I think this is a terrific idea. There is SO MUCH we can learn from our parents and grandparents, but I’ve noticed there is often tension and conflict coming from both sides of the new parent/experienced grandparent dynamic. I’ve actually thought about this issue a lot. It breaks my heart to hear grandmothers downplay or second-guess their own baby care experience and expertise because “things are so different now”. And it is just as difficult to hear women my age completely dismiss the wisdom of our mothers because, “those were different times”.  A class like this will hopefully go a long way to educating and empowering generations within families.

Kudos to Janice Koepnick and Birth Roots for offering a grandparents’ class!

Upcoming event: Naturally Mom & Me Showcase

Here’s a fun upcoming event hosted by Generation Green: the 2nd annual Naturally Mom & Me Showcase at The Forks Market on Friday, April 15th from 11-7PM.

Calling all moms & dads, parents to be, grandparents & anyone looking for the perfect baby gift! Come and experience this FREE showcase at The Forks Market to learn more about eco-friendly, natural products for families. Meet local manufacturers, sample food products, win prizes and more!!!

See more on the event’s Facebook page!


2016 Winnipeg Community Garage Sales

I’ve done this post the last couple years — people are always interested in the community-based garage sales that happen around the city and surrounding area. This year I’m including the “traditionally held” information – that way if you’re looking at this info in the future, you’ll know what day the sales are usually held.

Here are the ones for 2016 I know about so far… if you know of others, please leave me a comment and I will incorporate it into the list. Thanks!

2016 Winnipeg Community Garage Sales

  • West St. Paul (indoors at the Sunova Centre) – Saturday, April 2nd, 2016
  • Niverville – Saturday, April 30th, 2016
  • Whyte Ridge – traditionally held the Saturday of Mother’s Day Weekend – Saturday, May 7th, 2016
  • Southland Park – Saturday, May 14th, 2016 – 9am-3pm
  • Royalwood – traditionally takes place last Saturday of May – May 28th, 2016
  • Sage Creek – Saturday, May 28th (confirmed by @sagecreekra)
  • Linden Woods – traditionally held the first Saturday in June – Saturday, June 4th 2016
  • Normand Park – traditionally held the first Saturday in June – June 4th, 2016
  • Island Lakes – traditionally held the weekend after Labour Day – Saturday, September 10th, 2016
  • St Adolphe – town-wide sale. Sept. 17 and 18th


  • Glenelm – TBD

Breastfeeding support in French – Nourri-Source Winnipeg

I recently read about a wonderful new French-language initiative from the local women’s organization Pluri-elles. It’s a breastfeeding support program called Nourri-Source, that originated in Quebec and is now the first branch outside that province. The program matches experienced volunteer support mothers (marraines) with mothers who are currently breastfeeding, to give them support, help and encouragement to meet their breastfeeding goals.  Here is the poster!

update: Pluri-elles let me know that some of their volunteers are bilingual – so English-speaking moms are welcome to get in touch for support too!

poster source: Pluri-elles Facebook page

See also: Pluri-elles lance un groupe d’entraide pour les mères qui allaitent (radio-canada)

Used Baby & Kids Toy & Clothing Sale – in Support of the PPD Association of MB

I spotted this over on the I Support Midwifery in Manitoba Facebook group – what a terrific event to support the Post Partum Depression Association of Manitoba!

source: I Support Midwifery in Manitoba Facebook group

Here are the details:

Used Baby & Kids Toy & Clothing Sale
in support of the Post Partum Depression Association of Manitoba
April 9, 2016  9am-12 | St Mary’s Road United Church, 613 St. Mary’s Rd.

Please join us and find all of the baby, kids and maternity items you need!
Entry is $2.

Please email for more information about the event on about selling at the event. 

Net proceeds from the event support PPDAM.

Spring 2016 Children’s Used Clothes, Gear & Toy Sales

Here are a few upcoming kids/babies used clothes, gear & toy sales around Winnipeg. Leave me a comment if you know of others, and I’ll get them added. I’ll also be posting my 2016 community garage sale list before too long!

Used Baby & Kids Toy & Clothing Sale in support of the Post Partum Depression Association of Manitoba – Saturday April 9th, 2016 at St Mary’s Road United Church, 613 St. Mary’s Rd. – 9am-12pm – $2 entry

River Park South Y Neighbours – Saturday April 9th, 2016 at 2005 St. Mary’s Rd, in the St. Vital EMC – 9am-12:30 pm

St Vital Y Neighbours – Saturday April 16, 2016 at Jonathan Toews Community Center from 9:00am-12:00

Manitoba Families of Multiples – Saturday, April 23rd at Terry Sawchuk Area – 10:30 AM- 1:30 PM

The Spring Swap – Saturday April 30th, 2016 – 9am -1:30pm

ChildCycle – Saturday May 7th with New moms/Moms of under 1s presale Friday May 6th, 2016

I #SupportMBMidwives on this International Women’s Day

It’s no secret that I’m a huge proponent of midwifery and today is a great day to help publicize the challenges we are having in our province. We don’t have enough midwives in Manitoba and the ones we do have are struggling with pay equity, training issues, and more. Let’s hope that their current contract negotiations don’t come to a strike.

There’s a petition running to improve midwifery services in MB: Sign it here!!

In the meantime there’s an event happening at the Birth Centre this morning on midwifery in Manitoba. I wish I was able to attend!

In the weeks leading up to our provincial election, this is a good time to press your local candidates on what their parties commit to do to improve midwifery services in Manitoba.

Beyond Kegels — Local Help for Pelvic Floor Problems

How many times have you heard the suggestion (or the admonition) to “make sure you’re doing your Kegels!” As awareness grows about pelvic floor health, I think women are getting some mixed messages about how to fix and prevent pelvic floor problems. The “just do your Kegels” message is probably the most common one I personally hear, and yet I know from having done pelvic floor physiotherapy myself, it’s not the only or complete answer.

Today I’m really glad to bring you this guest post from pelvic floor physiotherapist Denisha Thompson, B.M.R., PT. Denisha reached out to me with information about pelvic floor physio (she practices at Centric Health Sports Therapy and Wellness Centre), and I thought the info was so useful that I wanted to share all of it! You can also find more local pelvic floor physiotherapists here. So without further ado, here’s Denisha.


I would like to take this opportunity to introduce you to the Pelvic Health Program that we have started at Centric Health Sports Therapy & Wellness Centre.

Specialized Physiotherapy is becoming more established in the literature as a first-line of defence against Incontinence and Pelvic Pain. Pelvic Floor Dysfunction can be caused by:

  • HYPOTONICITY (weak muscles): contributing to stress incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse
  • HYPERTONICITY (tight muscles): contributing to urgency, urge incontinence, chronic pelvic pain, dyspareunia, vaginismus, vulvodynia, pudendal neuralgia, interstitial cystitis and chronic prostatitis

Kegels are NOT always indicated for pelvic floor problems. Sometimes they do more harm than good, and often they are NOT performed correctly.

The Cochrane Collaboration 2014 concluded that Physiotherapists with specialized training in pelvic floor rehabilitation (using internal examination to teach the exercises) should be the first line of defence, before surgical consultation, for stress, urge and mixed incontinence in women. Pelvic floor physiotherapy should be considered for:

  • Painful bladder conditions (interstitial cystitis)
  • Stress urinary incontinence (before surgery is considered)
  • Urge incontinence (before anti-cholinergics are considered)
  • Fecal incontinence
  • Pelvic organ prolapse
  • Constipation
  • Dyspareunia and other painful vaginal conditions
  • Posterior pelvic pain in pregnancy
  • Male pelvic pain, including chronic prostatitis and testicular/penile pain
  • Post-partum scar tissue and dysfunction

There is quite a bit of overlap in symptoms and conditions of the pelvic floor that can be applied to variants of the above specified conditions. After a thorough assessment of an individual’s pelvic floor, related connective tissue integrity, and relevant (possible) lifestyle contributors, among other assessment strategies, often great results are achieved when treatment is applied.

If you have any questions, or would like more information about our services, please do not hesitate to contact me at 204-478-6480.

About the author: Denisha Thompson obtained her Bachelor of Medical Rehabilitation degree in 2007 from the University of Manitoba. Her first position as a physiotherapist, was assisting in a return to work rehabilitation program in a private clinic. Following this, she had the privilege of working at Health Sciences Center, specifically in the out-patient orthopedics department. Through this position she also had the opportunity of working on an in-patient ward– including positions in the emergency and burns unit, as well as providing physiotherapy in Churchill, Manitoba. Additionally, she has completed a variety of post graduate courses organized through that facility, and otherwise has successfully completed level I and II in the Orthopedic Division.

Always seeking new challenges and experiences, Denisha decided to embark on a new adventure by moving to Ontario from Winnipeg, Manitoba in 2010. Here, she continued her quest for continued education and expansion as a physiotherapist, by obtaining her certificate in Medical Acupuncture, and taking a variety of additional post-graduate orthopedic courses for assessment and treatment of spinal, shoulder, and muscle imbalance conditions. Denisha is passionate about health, wellness and fitness, and as such obtained her personal training certificate to supplement her interest of implementing exercise based classes and training as one of her hobbies.

Although she continues to practice and enjoy orthopedic physiotherapy, Denisha’s primary focus at this time is in Pelvic Health physiotherapy, as she has seen and become more aware of the positive impact it can provide. Denisha has completed levels one, two and three in Pelvic Health training, as well as completion of Röst Therapy: Relieving Sacro-iliac and Pubic Pain During and After Pregnancy. She is committed to continuing her advancement and training in this sector.

Denisha genuinely looks forward to meeting and working with individuals to achieve their functional goals!

Maternal Health Highlights from the Throne Speech

Great news: Monday’s Speech from the Throne contained a number of commitments related to women’s and maternal health, including the following:

“We will support the expansion of the Womenʼs Health Clinic and its important programming in reproductive health.

We will make sure more families have access to midwives and postpartum supports, and we will expand the successful Fertility Treatment Tax Credit to provide more support to would-be parents.

We will create a new breast milk donation centre and complete the rollout of digital mammography throughout the province. “

The speech also mentions improving access to childcare:

“We are announcing an ambitious goal: we will create a universally accessible child care system with 12,000 additional spaces for families, and expand Manitobaʼs workforce of early childhood educators with our partners, such as Red River College and Université de Saint-Boniface.”

These are all incredibly important things to women and families, and I hope the government is able to follow through on all of these commitments.

(via Women’s Health Clinic Globe & Female newsletter)


Manitoba Expands Newborn Hearing Screening Program

Another great announcement from the province: Manitoba has committed to expand its newborn hearing screening program into a universal program with teams in every regional health authority.

From the press release:

“Every family deserves access to the screening and supports they need to give their baby the best chance for a healthy start,” said Minister Blady.  “This expanded program will help ensure no child with congenital hearing loss falls through the cracks.”

The minister noted the quick diagnosis and treatment of children with hearing loss can be key in helping them develop cognitive, speech-processing and learning skills, adding the biggest gains are made if hearing loss is detected and diagnosed before a baby is three months old.

The supporting legislation will come into effect September 1, 2016.