TLC Artisan Festival Manila, CA


Teach Learn Create Join us at TLC artisan fair on Manila. We will be holding space for artist as a nonprofit monthly. DM me to vend. #humboldt #art #420 #manila #eureka #arcata #calpolyhumboldt #paintings #littlelostforest

♬ Dreams (2004 Remaster) – Fleetwood Mac

October 29, 2022- (Manila, CA) I am honored to share my latest volunteer assignment at TLC and our first Artisan’s fair that took place last Saturday. TLC showcased seven local artists, a band, and DJ at their new building on the Samoa peninsula. The TLC location includes a wood and artist studio space and a festival location open for the community to educate, create, and display in a safe and judgment-free environment.

TLC, “Teach, Learn, Create,” is a nonprofit funded by Jonas Kavanaugh and Patrick Murphy, two Humboldt County artists whose goal is to promote community interaction, share the knowledge of entrepreneurship, and showcase local artists. Jonas with Monument Settings builds benches for Arcata Skate Park, the Eureka waterfront, and other local sites. His partner, Patrick, owner of Redwood Humboldt, facilitated an art gallery in Arcata and is known for his picnic-styled wood benches. Patrick closed down his gallery due to multiple hospital trips and brain surgery. He is now on a mission to allow artists the freedom to showcase their art and get it out in the public’s eye.

TLC has set up booths at the Medival Festival of Courage in Blue Lake and the Zero Waste festival in Fortuna. Now they have put on TLC’s first festival at its home location. They plan to have a booth at Humboldt Cal Poly and other upcoming events and host TLC artisan fairs bi-monthly. You, too, can be a part of TLC, come to our meetings every Monday from 6-7pm at 2050 Peninsula Dr., Manila, CA to be a volunteer.

Photographer Matt Fahey is a supportive volunteer of TLC, offering his extensive knowledge in photography and videography to help artists with product photography, commercials, and documentation. He vends Hypertufa (concrete pots), suitable for succulents and concrete/ upcycled stepping stones.

Andrew Morin, an active TLC volunteer, is a metal welding artist who incorporates local tumbled rocks. Anything from metal key rings to stone door knobs, hangers, and much more. He has been getting back into metalworking since moving to the area last year. He enjoys reusing steel from the scrap yard or from the locals. He also enjoys incorporating other local resources, including reclaimed wood. He makes practical pieces with fun features such as enamel and beach stones.

Micah Edgar is a music producer, musician, and sound engineer. He is an active TLC build crew volunteer. He has been producing music with a friend for a year and a half. He started working on custom instruments by repurposing old electronics about six months ago. Since then, they have changed the invention of sound and look forward to putting out their first album. Patrick and Micah collaborated on a tape loop sampling synth. Micah’s collaborative electronic music reminds me of an early-day Radiohead. You can find his music here.

Natascha Pearson (that’s me!) is also a frequent volunteer. I am an acrylic painter with themes of surrealism, the female body, mythology, and spirituality. I am also a practicing pagan supplying my community with altarpieces, salves, bath salts, and tarot readings under the name Little Lost Forest. I help connect artists and collectors to our TLC community. I also vend my husband, Jeremy Pearson’s paintings. He paints landscapes and space.

The Tea Fairy brought a child-friendly, fantasy shell-building station with moss, mushrooms, and natural goods to decorate in a shell! She also displayed degradable glitter, Dream Sachets, and needling art.

Mihael Kavanaugh preformed on stage. He is a singer song writer, and poet. His business is Fairwind Botanicals with lavender sprays and balms.

Primitive Roots with Fortuna farm owner Sarah ( and FB at Primitive Roots 707) displayed resin and wood bowls, cutting boards, some with transformer-burned wood designs with a resin coating, unique cribbage boards, and much more. You can find a video of Sarah’s partner Loren woodburning with a neon sign transformer here and his IG.

Steadfast Creations offered knitted and crotched goods and cute octopus plushies!

Violinist, Uncle Steve, an Arcata local, played with band members Erick on drums, Joe playing keyboards, and Frank on the flute.


TLC Artisan Fair. Manila, CA Uncle Steve rockin the violin with this local band. #humboldt #artfair #tlc #littlelostforest

♬ original sound – littlelostforest

I look forward to more TLC artisan fairs, and I encourage you to spread the word to any upcoming artists still getting their feet on the ground to contact Patrick on the TLC Facebook page or come to a Monday night meeting to participate!

Kinetic Sculpture Races

“For the Glory!” The crowd cheered at the finish line of the Kinetic Sculpture Race in Ferndale, CA on May 30 2021. Fifty three participants created a Kinetic Sculpture and raced from Arcata to Ferndale within three days, over hills and through water. There are no set rules on  building a kinetic sculpture race car besides that there shall be no motor! Sculptures may have any number of wheels or pilots, they can not be bigger than 8’x14’, all steering wheels are welcomed, must be able to move through land and sea, and most importantly your chassis (a.k.a frame). Kinetic race sculptures should also acquire chains, wheels, welding, axles, bearings, sprockets, gears, brakes and a whole lot more you can find here! Growing in interest, you can find people from all over coming to Humboldt county to participate in the national, grand championship Kinetic Sculpture Races!

Hobart Brown, founder of The Kinetic Sculpture Race in 1969 began building his art in local Ferndale studio, Mind’s Eye. He started the Sculpture Race with his own contractions and kids down Ferndale’s main plaza. This home of magical inventions and contraptions did not cease with Hobart but continued on as Marc and Lieah Daniels, current owners  of Mind’s Eye, offer studio space to local crafters and artist while maintaining a hub for Marc’s True North Boats, as stated on his website, “We create one-of-a-kind custom kayaks, teach skin boat building workshops, and are committed to helping traditional skin boat building thrive in the Native communities where it was originally invented and developed.” Over coffee we chatted about the beauties of Alaska and I got a sneak peak on a newer project, a wide frame boat they will attempt to use a skin in replace of wood panels. Anyhoo… back to the races!

If the art cars don’t completely take you away then allow it to be the celebratory finish line where my family and I awaited for the cars to zoom to their final destination! The Kinetic Sculpture band was a hoot. The bandleader led with a spatula as the announcers on a truck bed hollered, “If you like the band buy them a beer, if you don’t like the band buy them two. They play better when they’re drunk!” Colorful misfits and sparkle ponies, fairy godmothers, and “Kops” with bubble guns stormed the street. Performers playing with hula hoops, unicycles and poi. The historical buildings have a magical lust for such a festival. 

Kids and adults of all ages danced to the music and as the cars came in one by one the audience collected memorabilia from the Kinetic Sculpture’s squads, ranging from balls, stickers, to the “Bear Minimum” (a piece of paper stating just that!) Everyone was in great spirits and people from all over opened their hearts to this incredibly artistic event after such a long silence of COVID.

The sculptures and riders don’t have it easy and I would assume their following posse do not either. Starting in Arcata at noon all racers take off as onlookers cheer for their favorite stylized and sustainable art car. They finish day one at Halvorsen Park in Eureka. Day two starts off at Wharfinger Boat Ramp. Art cars must test their skill through the waters and finish at Samoa Bridge. On Memorial Day the racers started at Crab Park through the Eel River bridge, to the valley and ending on historic Main Street. Through the finish line came glory steelers and then our actual winners, in first place was Lemonheads, second was Live Wrong, and third place with Wing Nuts. Speed is not the only ranking place that the judges look for but also the Grand Champion, Best Art, Best Engineering, Best Pageantry and many more (that have yet to be posted!) You can find those results here! Our favorites being the three humped camel and plan bee! Thank you kinetic sculpture championship for such a family friendly and exciting event.

8 Year Sibling Age Gap

It’s incredible having children eight years apart. I get to enjoy raising a child from a different perspective. I already know that studying and reading are crucial development skills and that gentle words can be better than any discipline. Better than that, my eight-year-old has an appreciation for being an older sibling and loves being helpful when interacting with the baby.

I adopted my daughter in 2018. Long before then, she asked me for a sibling. I fed into her fantasy that was surrounded by barriers like having a big enough home. In 2021 we settled into a house in Humboldt county where it was possible to expand our family, and so we did! Bringing baby Malakai into the world was a lot of fun for all of us, even if I chickened out on letting Halaya, my daughter, watch the actual delivery. Since then, it has been the biggest blessing to have such a helpful big sister.

I prepared Halaya the same way I prepared myself. Talk to the baby, make birth art, and write letters to the future of you and baby. When the baby came, well, no one can prepare you for that.

I practice EC (Elimination Communication) with my son; it’s an infant potty training method. At first, I was so embarrassed putting him on the toilet at random times that I found fitting; and then he wouldn’t “go.” My daughter is who got me into it. She would do pee dances and make the sound of whooshing water. She would make funny grunts to indicate him to go poop. She fell out of this habit, but I wouldn’t have had the confidence to do EC training if it weren’t for her.

There were doubts and fears at first. I was paranoid. I didn’t want my daughter picking up my son and walking with him, which lasted for about three months. She could hold him sitting down, and that was it. I don’t know if she has gained arms of steal or was always capable of keeping him, but at Malakai’s age of six months, she is more willing to hold and help with the baby than some adults in the house.

When I work nights or need some extra sleep after being up with the baby for most of the night, my daughter will come into our bed and watch my son as I sleep. She enjoys watching TikTok on my phone while holding the baby. She has helped me sleep countless times.

My daughter knows how to play with my son. While I lack a sense of “play,” my daughter can relate to my son and the types of toys there are for infants. She makes his play area entertaining and draws his interests with funny impersonations, dances, loud songs, and movements.

It’s hard to share the attention as an eight-year-old, so we encourage her to play with friends and join sports. We do what is affordable to us, and when funds are tight and can’t be invested into curricular activities, I take it upon myself to visit her friends and go to the park, even with the newborn.

Now that we started feeding the baby, I want to encourage Halaya to make baby food. We are introduced to moms with similarly aged babies (there does seem to be a boom happening), and I think it would help her development by making organic food that she processes and jars for friends and family. I think it will help her have a more significant appreciation for organic fruits and vegetables and eat them as they are.

My best friend, who has an eight-year gap between his sister and self, says, “It’s really great!”

If you are expecting a child or want to conceive and you have an older sibling in the house, here are some great things to consider: you have help from a child that can do their chores, reading books becomes a family sport again, and your older child is developing and learning so much with their sibling. A lifelong friend is a good answer: How will my eight-year-old perceive my newborn?

The so-called, “Billion Dollar Industry”

The Unjust Pay System in the Marijuana Industry

As an observer of the marijuana community, a question pops up all too often that has everyone wondering, where is all the money at? We have hard-working employees, males, and females, who work long hours, which are not afraid to get their hands dirty. So, where is the profit with all the planting? As COVID brings marijuana sales to a record high while dispensaries remain open as an essential business, why do farm workers remain at the bottom of the pay scale?

The real reason the grower and the owner can’t see eye to eye. A worker goes on to a farm, helps them turn their harvest to an abundant green yield, and in the end, their pay comes late, scarce, and more work is expelled without a full payout up to that point. Bonuses are promised but never seen. What once was a decent paying job, the worker finds themselves waiting for their pay, unmotivated to work, and easily replaceable with the next willing participant. Where did this mom and pops, family valued, hippie ‘ love and peace,’ grow community, one might think they are stepping into, go? It went to corporate America.

Yes, the men with ties and suits are to blame. Even if the owner thinks they are the big shoot, spending outside of their means on music equipment, big cars, and overextended vacations, here’s the catch- that money isn’t there. Corporate America is making the so-called billions in the billion-dollar industry. So much of the profit goes into taxes that the once hippie-dippie landowner is now hanging with rappers, sporting an image they can’t afford. While white market owners can’t value their pounds half of what the black market can, none of this money dwindles to the grower. The lead grower is being worked to the bone, and his profits directly reflect the owner’s value in people. As the quality withers, prices and pay drop slowly, the farmworkers starve while the owner keeps his appearance.

Marijuana was legalized in California in November 2016. Growers didn’t have great expectations for this. It was expected to take away thousands of pot dealers’ jobs by bringing the marijuana industry into businesses. What did this mean to the grower? What many Americans might have assumed would keep thousands of pot growers outside of jail, growers had to face a new reality, now they had to follow the rules, regulations, and worse of all, pay taxes or be subjected to raids and fines. As growers race to get permits, many growers end up taking the easier way out and remaining black market.

So how does this affect the ones growing the weed? White/ Black, “whatever” market, growing weed isn’t like working at Carl’s JR, but the pay of a lead farmer isn’t far off from the income of being hired off the street at a Carl’s JR. The skills of the marijuana grower are being undermined in an industry that is holding onto nickel and dime compared to pre-legalization, where the industry was about helping the little guys out, not using them. Farmers with years of skill are treated like basic laborers, and even the white market players are getting away with not paying their employees what their worth is.

So how to fix this problem? Illuminate the greed and go back to the root. Project owners should appreciate the person growing their weed. We’re not talking about a robot. The farmhand is a human being growing medicinal plants to help people heal. The handling of marijuana influences its outcome, and if we grow weed like we farm our meat, we will all end up glutenous.

Happy Cows come from Happy Farms. Happy Plants come from Happy Farmers.

Staffing companies pocket 20-30 percent of the worker’s pay in exchange for legal paperwork, including paychecks, benefits, and HR work. The farms might have their employees covered, but those employees don’t see the benefits. Their pay becomes minimal, and they are once again replaceable. To solve this, farm owners can’t just be suits and jackets. They have to have humility and care for their workers. Their workers, in return, will care about the outcome of their product. And how do we get the owner to care for their worker? By lowering taxes so that they are not stretched so thin, they too are just looking for the next dollar to keep the farm afloat. Let them keep their facade image, which may never change, but do it so that they can pay their farmer and put food on the table for their families. Then, add a structured pay scale for positions on farms. As the government recognizes this industry, its positions should be recognized and compensated adequately. Like any business, starting laborer shouldn’t be paid the same as long-term workers, transparency about weight and numbers should be available, bonuses shouldn’t just be a dream, and lead farmers should be paid for their skills and knowledge, not the equivalent of a fast-food worker with no experience. Last of all permanent employment shouldn’t be waved in front of staff like a golden ticket, without any winner.

Setting Your Birthing Space

We prepare our bodies and minds for birth for nine months, but what about our birthing space?

Giving birth at home gave me time to prepare my birthing space. A popular question during my pregnancy was, where are you going to give birth? I imagined in the bathtub or on all fours in the bathroom. My mom foresaw me giving birth in the bedroom- and that’s where it happened. Regardless of where you give birth, in the hospital, or at home, starting to prepare your birthing space can begin right away. Even though nothing will ever go perfectly to plan, making these items and putting energy into your birthing space will help prepare you and comfort you for when the time comes.

As soon as I decided to make the bathroom my birthing space, I began my south-facing water shrine, and I knew I had to do something about the lights. I am not a fan of fluorescent light. We switched out the mirror lights with blue LEDs for an aquatic mood. When I went into labor, it was still light outside, but we still like the blue lights.
I painted Circus Lion Malakai on the shelf. I got a fern, a common plant that grows under Redwoods, and a beautiful blue vase (which ended up not being practical.) A few candles and a vintage starfish mirror made up the rest of my south-facing alter.

To prepare my daughter, Halaya, for the birth of her brother, I had her read “Kid’s Book to Welcome a New Baby” by Barbara Collman. One of the activities was to make welcome signs for the baby, and a baby is sleeping sign. Halaya miss understood the “baby is sleeping” sign and wrote, “Malakai go to sleep!” I love the “Welcome to the World Malakai” sign she made. I smile every time I pass it. After having the baby, you have to bring him into his body. Stretch him out, move around for him. I feel like these signs are another way of welcoming him into his body by acknowledging his presence.

For my baby shower, I orchestrated prayer flags. Prayer flags are a sentence or two welcoming a baby into the world from the book Birthing from Within by Pam England and Rob Horowitz. Everyone reacted differently to the prayer flags and uniquely wrote their flags. It was heartwarming to hear what everyone had to contribute to Malakai’s coming, and it helped me feel supported by a network of friends and family. Later in life, Malakai will also appreciate the people who supported him in his journey into the world.

It was eight days after my estimated due date, and the whole house was getting ansie. I had all the time in the world, but feeling like you could pop any minute is distracting. There was this little art project I wanted to do for my birthing space inspired by a decoration in the window of the downtown clothing store, Belle Starr.

My mom and daughter were buzzing around me like frantic bees, so I bought different-sized ribbons and used a wreath base from two Christmases ago and had them work together on this octopus. It ended up being a bonding project that they were both proud of. At first, we hung it in the bathroom, and it looked beautiful with the blue light, but I had my husband remove it once the rushes became too intense. Now, this birthapus is hanging in the art room.

This picture was gifted to me by a mother friend friend, Mikaela. I found it entirely appropriate for my birthing space and felt I could use this mandala to meditate through my rushes. The painting was looking out for me and supported my journey into motherhood.

Last but not least the mobile I made for Malakai that I hung over the bed where I actually gave birth. This mobile took me two tries and hours of a DYI Mobile Macrame Youtube video with a tedious Christmas carol playing in the background. This mobile represents dreams and he loves looking up at it.

Even if you don’t give birth in your birthing space, preparing yourself with comfort items to help with the rushes and set a comfortable mood will allow you to ease your birthing experience. Also, having a humidifier with your favorite essential oils will calm the mind. Stimulating all the senses in positive ways can help with birth! Planning your birthings space ahead of time helps prepare your mind, so you can enjoy the ride.

Planting the Placenta: How I Honored my Placenta and how it Resembles the Tree of Life

I had an amazing at-home birthing experience last week, and out of it came a beautiful baby and the life-giving placenta. The placenta is responsible for providing oxygen to the baby, discarding waste, and giving nutrients. The umbilical cord comes from the placenta and is attached to the baby’s belly. The placenta, bloody and bag-like, also resembles the tree of life within its design. Even though one can consume the placenta, I choose to plant it in a tree. My doula offered to do a placenta print, and so we did!

Tree of Life within the Placenta

Before I get to the placenta, I would like to talk about my experience with the doula.

My doula, Sarah with Sacred Cycle Doula, gave me pregnancy tea to help induce labor and support my immune system. Sarah ( picked me up two days before my birth to take me on a walk on the beach. I expressed my insecurities, and we spent the time getting to know each other at the Samoa Dunes in Humboldt County. A doula is an emotional support person during birth. She helped me with my breathing during labor. Afterward, she helped me with my milk production by offering me a bulk serving of a soup made from coconut, sweet potato, and nettle. This sweet porridge-like meal worked wonders, and after a few days, with the help of Mother’s Milk Tea, my milk was abundant.

The day after my birth, we took the placenta out of the fridge and placed it on a chux pad to make the print. Using the blood still in the ziplock bag, she painted the placenta with it and, with a large drawing paper, she made a perfect print of the placenta that helped support, feed, and nourish my baby.

Placenta Print

I knew I wanted to plant my placenta. I initially was drawn to a lemon tree, but I couldn’t find one anywhere local in late summer. I settled with a Mutsu, green apple tree. I bought a large pot to put it in until we have found a permanent home. My husband, the farmer, filled the bottom of the pot with Fox Farm Soil. We placed the placenta inside and added another layer of soil before adding the tree so that the organ wasn’t directly underneath the tree. Then, we filled the rest of the pot up and watered it lightly.

The tree symbolizes the tree of life reflected on the placenta, as well as the journey ahead of my baby boy. It also resembles the change of the seasons that will make its leaves transition in color which will fall and regrow. The tree will provide fruit that helps nourish and feed its community, as I hope my son will foster to his. These are the reasons I choose to plant my placenta. Please comment below with what you did with yours!

File:Tree of life.jpg
The Tree of Life (

Places to Hike in Humboldt County

Episode One

by Natascha Pearson

May 5, 2021

This week I have explored three new locations to hike in Humboldt County.

I started in Sunny Brae, where I hiked trailhead 1, the Beith Creek Loop Trail. I came upon two beautiful creeks during a moderate hike followed by an intermediate upslope. This hike is full of giant redwoods and immerses its participants in a forest experience. In addition, this trail has a bike-friendly accomplice. Unfortunately, this trail gets some traffic since it is so close to Arcata and College of the Redwoods. Nevertheless, my dog and I thoroughly enjoyed this hike. It is the most challenging of the three listed. This is a dog friendly trail.

Next is Headwaters Forest Reserve, which is full of history and plant life. This 11-mile hike (to the end and back again) is a day’s mission—5 1/2 miles to the end and back again. The first mile is on a paved road that follows a stream. Along the way, there are signs posted to educate people passing by about salmon spawning and how the forest reserve came to be once an old logging road. There is a beautiful, wooden education building in the first stretch. Once the paved road turns to dirt, I find the path less crowded and have yet to pass another person after this point. There are some uphill sloops, but overall, the hike is an easy one to make. The path is pristine. Running water and the songs from the birds fill the forest. I worked on training my dog on this path because it is a beginners hike and I can communicate with her easily compared to the rough terrain of the forest. I recommend this hike for someone looking for an easy-going day hike. This is a dog friendly trail.

I also made it to Agate Beach in Trinidad this week, a 32-minute drive from Eureka. We paid $8 for parking and drove through a rather large campsite to a parking lot on the coast. A beautiful view of the ocean awaited us when we got out of the car. From there, we hiked down a beautiful steep hill with gorgeous plants with a rather attractive texture. The trail was a little wet from running water. When we reached the bottom, there is a stream to your right where I left an offering of used tea herbs in thanks for any pebbles that we collect on the coast. Next, we walked down the nearly empty beach surrounded by redwood trees. The ocean seems to have less aggressive waves than on the beach in Eureka, but the tide comes in fast, so you have to watch out while collecting stones. We all got our shoes soaked. The stones are small in size but are what I was looking for during our walk. I brought some home to craft with for my Little Lost Forest store. This wasn’t a dog friendly trail.

Humboldt Home Birth

Unassisted Home Birth

Home births are on the rise, especially with COVID still lingering in the hospitals. I am eighteen weeks pregnant with my first child and here are my steps in deciding on home birth. 

I want a natural birth so I could feel all the adrenaline of birth. I want my child to naturally come into this world and I want to do so as peacefully as possible. I want a spiritual experience and I want to be as connected to my child as possible. 

Humboldt County offers many great birthing opportunities. I would like to talk about the ones I researched so that if you want to have a natural birth but don’t want to go as far as a home birth here are some awesome options for you. This was also a big step in my decision-making process.

Dr. Stokes at St. Joseph Health Medical Group, is the OB I have decided to go with. Even though I want a home birth I want to get the tests, the ultrasound, and guidance of a professional without them interfering with my childbirth. I’ve been able to receive the professional doctor visits I need, without fearing that I will be judged or misguided due to my decision. 

The Moonstone Midwives: I cried in awe when I went to the Moonstone Midwives orientation. They offered a group of five midwives that work with you closely and stay on call if you need to get a hold of them any day. The experience is a personal one, where they attend to your needs and desires so you have the experience you long for. They have a beautiful birthing center where each room looks like your own private bedroom equipped with a bathtub. They talked about building a relationship with their clients. They offered some strict rules for home births because of COVID, but the option was still available. It is recommended to only have one family member at the birth and nobody that has traveled out of the area at least two weeks leading up to the birth (for me this meant my mom and my adopted daughter, who will be taking a vacation prior to the birthing.) Unfortunately, they do not take MediCal so I was unable to move forward with this option. 

Open Door Community Health Centers: This Obstetric was highly recommended. They have midwives and Doulas that are on call for any question that you may have. They have a hotline for good and bad foods and herbs you can eat while pregnant. They offer yoga, swim passes, birth baths, counseling, and they take MediCal! Unfortunately, due to COVID, you cannot birth in the birth baths and many of the exercise amenities are closed. This option wasn’t much different than that of St. Joseph Health Medical Group, so I stuck to the doctor I’d already met with. 

Planning a home birth can be overwhelming especially with all the fear that escalates around it. I immediately found support in Facebook groups, surrounding my feed with like-minded individuals, and I quickly came to realize that my fears and challenges are shared with other pregnant mom’s, simultaneously. These groups have helped me tremendously to gain the confidence I need to give birth, I really appreciate their support. Here are the groups I joined:

Doing it at Home Birth Group

Unassisted Home Birth Support

Pregnancy and Motherhood

Next, accompanied with countless amounts of YouTube videos, I piled on the books. I’ve read more books since I’ve been pregnant than I have ever before, (sometimes five books at a time on different subjects,) and I’ve always been an active reader. These pregnancy books are easier than they seem. Some of it I skim, while other parts I jot down in my notebook for easy finding. 

I was gifted What to Expect When You’re Expecting by Heidi Murkoff. This book goes over A-Z about being pregnant by week. This book was a great start to preparing for my pregnancy and soothing any worries. 

Once I decided to have a home birth I got Home Birth on Your Own Terms by Heather Baker. This book is a must for home births but there are suggestions in it that I take with a grain of salt. It prepares an expectant for a home birth and has pictures to help the reader visualize it. She goes over everything from herbs, to birthing positions. It’s a step-by-step book on how to do it at home. 

I also received Birthing From Within by Pam England and Rob Horowitz. This book is different than I expected. It prepares the mother for the spiritual and psychological aspects of childbirth. It has many exercises to strengthen the bond between mother and child and held mentally prepare the mother for birth. At the beginning of this book, the author mentions Lucy, a Homosapien who also gave birth in her natural environment without any prep or planning. 

My supportive OB recommended Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth and Spiritual Midwifery by Ina May Gaskin. These books are a more in-depth look into childbirth and offer more medical advice than the other books listed. I highly recommend these books for a woman looking to have a home birth. 

Guarding the Moon: A Mother’s First Year by Francesca Lia Block follows her own experience with the joys and fears of motherhood. Francesca is an incredible writer who incorporates magic, honesty, and vulnerability in her telling’s of birth and the first year of childhood. 

The books are a must but something is also a must, telling the folks. I’ve been warned to not tell anyone that will not be supportive but, since my family and I have a close relationship, I felt obligated to. 

After the shock of telling the mothers in my family that I was planning a home birth, they all said the same thing: Women all over the world have been giving birth in their natural environment for centuries. As I head into my journey I have the ancestral support of millions of mothers that gave birth outside of a hospital and, now, I also have the support of my own mothers.

When I knew it was what I going to do, no one could stop me, and with confidence came support. 

My husband and I found a birthing class called Heart of the Rose, that utilizes the book Birthing from Within. Her classes are local to Eureka, CA and help prepare the mother and partner for childbirth.

Now, I plan the birth. That’s right, I plan it. I told my mom I was going to send her my birthing plan before I told her I wanted a home birth and her response was: I’ve never heard of that before (that was when I knew I had to tell her.) So here is a rough draft of my plan. 

I talk to my baby and tell my baby that we are doing this together, we are birthing at home, and to be ready to cooperate, after all it’s me and baby figuring this out. I feel like I’ve gained a deeper relationship with my child by talking to it daily (we joke around and laugh a lot, my baby has a sense of humor.) And from there I have this plan:

I listen to classical music when no one else is around so my child and I can relax and that way it is attuned to certain artists and songs. When I give birth I want these songs to be played. I do full moon rituals that fulfill my pagan practices. I would like to smudge the room I give birth in and invite my ancestors to join. I enjoy essential oils, lately lemon and lavender. I would like for these smells to accompany me. I have written down affirmations. I tell these to myself every day my favorites being, “My baby and my body know what to do,” “The waves can’t be stronger than me, they are me,” “Tough times never last but tough people do.” I want to give birth in the tub but I am prepared to be in many positions according to what my body tells me. I want to hold the baby in briefly, with my hand or my husbands, to allow fluids to drain and to prevent ripping. My husband will catch the baby and lay it on my chest. After the placenta has stopped pulsing, he will cut the cord. My friend will videotape the birth and record the time. My mother will watch my daughter, bring hot water to the tub, and receiving blankets when ready. I want to birth mostly alone and when it is time to birth, I want as little interaction with others as possible. I imagine my daughter thinking beautiful and positive thoughts, which I will prep her for since she is seven and might feel fear. I want to record the baby’s weight and prints. If the baby comes two weeks early or two weeks late, I will consider going to the hospital for my birth, otherwise during my birthing process I want to be reminded that this is my birthing plan and I don’t want anyone to suggest or listen to me if I suggest, going to the hospital.

I am capable of giving birth at home and so are you! If you are thinking about a home birth do your research and don’t be afraid. Millions of women have given birth outside of hospitals and so can you!