Book & Doc Club: Recommended Reads & Watches

Documentaries

  • The Milky Way (2014) produced by the Milky Way Foundation
    • My synopsis: If there was a documentary that encompassed all of my opinions, thoughts, and passion- this would be the one. It moved me, enraged me, validated my feelings, broke my heart, and resonated deeply. This documentary spot lights the crisis we have in America as a culture towards mothers and babies and how it desperately needs to change.  I think this is a MUST see for not only mothers, but everyone. I also encourage you to join the cause at milkywayfoundation.org
  • The Business of Being Born (2008) produced by Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein
    • My synopsis: A powerful documentary showcasing the problems of maternal care in America. This documentary has been attributed to starting the “Natural Birth Movement” of today. Many issues were discussed such as the alarming rising rate of cesarean sections (and if they are necessary) performed in America, the lack of information and options available to women during their pregnancy such as Birthing Centers, Doulas, or Midwives, as well as exploring the financial and litigation aspects of hospitals and how it has been changing the way healthcare has started to treat and view birth.

  • Milk (2012) by Noemi Weis
    • My synopsis: This documentary was hard to watch. I shed many tears. It is a devastating portrayal of how mothers in impoverished countries are given misinformation regarding formula (which is given to them by developed countries like the US) which they cannot afford. The result is severe malnourished infants and tragically the death of many babies. It also encompasses the politics surrounding breastfeeding and birth in the developed world.
  • Breastmilk (2014) Dana Ben-Arie
    • My synopsis: A heartbreaking look into how breastfeeding support is really handled in the US today.
  • Babies (2010) by Thomas Balmès
    • My synopsis: A cute, family friendly documentary which showcases the birth and first year of life of four infants in four drastically different cultures. I think you will be surprised to find which baby has the ideal lifestyle.

Books

  • Anything By Dr. Sears!
  •  The Continuum Concept: In Search Of Happiness Lost (Classics in Human Development) by Jean Liedloff 
    • My synopsis: Fascinating! Written in the late 1970’s by an American writer depicting her eye-opening realizations about our culture particularly relating to infant and child care that she gained through living with South American Indians who were untouched by Modern civilization. A hard read, but very powerful. 
  • How to Conceive Naturally: And Have a Healthy Pregnancy after 30 by Christa Orecchio (Author), Willow Buckley (Author)
    • My Synopsis: I know the title says “After 30” but I think this is a must read for any couple trying to conceive! It was eye opening and so informative. In a society where infertility is rampant and often unexplained these educated women have a very simple yet profound explanation. They attribute our diet, lifestyle, and products as much to blame for the myriad of reproductive problems women experience today. They theorize that getting back to basics (basically just getting healthy) will do wonders. Loaded with facts and resources, mini diagnostic tests, recipes, and so much more.
  • the no-cry sleep solution by Elizabeth Pantley 
    • My synopsis:  If you are struggling with sleep deprivation but have the same abhorration for sleep-training that I do, I highly recommend this book. She is a mother of four and is anti-Cry-it-Out, but offers a gentle solution to getting your child to sleep more at night while also giving you a lot of information about the biology of infant sleep patterns while still being an easy read.
  • Beyond the Sling by Mayim Bialik. 
    • My synopsis: Talks about natural  birth, attachment parenting, and a more “natural” way of raising children through infancy and toddlerhood. A very “granola” and “hippy” outlook. I could resonate with most of it, and the stuff I couldn’t I still found interesting.
  • The Milk Memos: How Real Moms Learned to Mix Business with Babies- and How You Can, Too by Cate-Colburn-Smith and Andrea Serrette
    •  My synopsis: A lot of useful information for pumping mothers! Inspiring and informative. They talk about coping with returning to work all the way up to giving advice about how to wean when you are ready.
  • Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey Into the Afterlife by Eben Alexander
    • My Synopsis: This book has nothing to do with parenting but it affected me greatly so I felt the need to put it here. It is very profound. Get’s a little wordy as the book goes on, but still worth reading at least the first chapters which are his account of his near-death experience.
  • 10% Happier : How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works–A True Story by Dan Harris
    • My synopsis: This book was a great help when I was dealing with the anxiety of being pregnant after suffering recurrent miscarriages. He is witty and sarcastic but offers great advice on how to literally “tame the voice in your head” through meditation and letting go of what you cannot control.
  • The Sperm Meets Egg Plan by Deanna Roy
    • My synopsis: If you are trying to get pregnant whether you have a history of loss or infertility or not- read this! I gained more information about trying to conceive from this small pamphlet than any book I’ve read.
  • Birth, Breathe, and Death: Meditations on Motherhood, Chaplaincy, and Life as a Doula by Amy Wright Glen
    • My synopsis: This book had me thinking a lot about my spirituality and how profound becoming a mother is. The author eloquently tells her life story of growing up mormon to studying philosophy and theology. Her journey is incredible. She was a doula and the calming presence for birthing women as well as a hospital chaplain and the calming presence for the dying. She speaks to the beauty and miracle of life and explains that there is something profound both in birth and in death.

Read anything good lately? Contact me with Recommendations!!

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