Welcoming The Doula Community House!

Today the The Doula Community House happily leaps into being to

“Doula the Doulas!”

Doulas provide tireless service to their clients, passionate about birth and doing all they can to support families in the birthing journeys for healthy, safe and satisfying outcomes.   Often their long hours are unscheduled and filled with far more time commitment than is recognized by their clients (but always by their families! :) ),  in addition to the planned prenatal visit(s) & birth itself, they are often answering questions in early pregnancy, making phone calls of encouragement in late pregnancy, researching personalized solutions for their clients all the time, making extra visits to help with breastfeeding issues postpartum, and strategizing referrals and community connections weeks or even months later.  Where do they go for renewal, for mentorship, or with questions once they’ve ‘become a doula?’

Welcome to the warm, understanding and supportive arms of The Doula Community House!

Hosted by Indigo Forest, The Doula House is committed to nurturing doulas by creating a community hub (both locally and across the web) that provides warm support, practical information, friendly networking and continuing education.  It’s The Place to go when you need a hug after a tough birth,  some perspective on a challenging situation/client, a ‘birth fix,’ or to get recharged with an inspiring class.

Doulas Circle (the verb), is our free support group for the women who support women in birth, meeting monthly on the second Saturday of the month at 10 am; if this is your passion, you are invited to our first gathering on October 13th, 2012.   Led by Beth Barbeau, Tradition Midwife and Master Educator with 30 years experience in the birth community, this groups is the safe place to let down your hair and enjoy the community of women who understand your life, loves and challenges!  Cozy tea & honey provided.

Generally concluding at 11:30, October 13th we’ll be ending a bit early because Indigo Forest’s “Parent-Doula Meet & Greet” is happening from 11:00-12:30 this day.   This will be a great chance to meet and mingle with potential clients who are coming to have the opportunity to meet a variety of doulas at one time.   Please preregister with Indigo Forest (734.994.8010) if you plan on participating.

Come ‘friend’ us on Facebook for on-going updates and birth information, as well as announcements of pending classes for especially for doulas.

Red Tent Temple

A monthly sanctuary created by women for women

Inside the Red Tent Temple….you will find a space to heal and be heard – a place to stop and relax, enjoy potluck offerings and herbal tea, journal, sing, laugh, be silent, cry, create, and reconnect with what ties us all together:  being woman.  Women from all stages of life are welcome.

Held on Sunday nearest the New Moon from 12noon – 4 pm.

Fall 2012 dates are as follows:

August 19  *  September 16  *  October 14  *  November 11  *  December 16

Why a Red Tent Temple?   Why not a place where women can come together?  Where they stop and rest?  A place where we can celebrate our strength, a safe place where we can express our immense fragility, a place to find answers and offer support, a place to build the community of women?

What is a Red Tent Temple?  It is a place and space that is co-created once a month in towns and citites across the country around the new moon.  Our tent is held on the Sunday closest to the New Moon from 12 Noon until 4 pm.

Who comes to the temple?  Women from all stages of life are welcome.  Women who no longer have their wombs or who are in menopause are needed to make our circle whole.  Young girls are welcome to attend if they have begun menses, but since adult discussions will occur in the temple, girls under the age of 16 must be accompanied an adult.  Babies are welcome if they are ‘in arms’ – not yet crawling or walking.

What happens during the Red Tent Temple?  Much of the time is unstructured to allow for a wonderful fluid and organic time in, where the empty space supports the unexpected and unplanned.

At some point during the time of the temple, we will have a chance to gather in a circle.  This is a time for the women sitting in circle to ‘check in.’  It is a time for each woman to have a short time to speak without being given advice, to truly be heard, to cry, to laugh,  and for a few moments to have it ‘all about her.’  After circle, there will be some unstructured time where women can offer further support ot another, find some quiet reflective time or join another group doing a variety of things.

The Story Chair is a chair where a woman sits to share her story of her ‘womanhood journey.’  THe stories may come in the forms of narrative, songs and poems.  They may make you laugh or cry or you may have an ‘Aha moment.’

What items are brought to the temple?

Sharing:  Every Red Tent Temple is an opportunity to bring something to share.  That can be drums, books, healing work, potluck items or teas.

Donating:  The Ann Arbor Temple is just in it’s inception and is being created by everyday women just like you.  We need donations of lovely red items.  We have some red cloth but need more. Pillows, throws, rugs would all be lovely.  If you wish to donate money, it will be used to beautify the space, provide amenities, or to pay building and /or advertising costs.

Items for your personal use: Seating is not provided.  You are encouraged to bring a camp chair if you need to be up off the ground.  You are encouraged to bring knitting, journals, drawing supplies…anything which will help you to enjoy this space.

Why wear red?  Wearing red is a great way to fully immerse yourself in the red tent experience but probably only half of the women will be wearing red.  Please feel free to come as you are or to wear something that makes you feel whole.

Hosted by Indigo Forest, at 4121 Jackson Rd, Ann Arbor, MI  48103   Directions on this site under ‘Visit us.’
Questions?  Please contact Heather Doveheart, heather.doveheart@yahoo.com, (517) 917-3435.


Spring Clean with Detox Baths!

Super Oxy Bath

A Unique Bath Additive Designed to Support Numerous Functions:

  • Introduces additional oxygen into the bathwater
  • Induces relaxation and restful sleep
  • Changes the pH of bathwater from acidic to slightly alkaline
  • Stimulates the lymphatic system
  • Breaks down herbicides and pesticides found in water
  • Helps neutralize the chlorine and new form of fluoride (fluorosilysic acid) found in in city water
  • Draws poisons from the body through skin and neutralizes toxins
  • Saturates blood with oxygen by way of osmosis
  • Compatible with aromatic oils &  hydrogen peroxide
  • Leaves skin soft and clean
  • Relieves aches and pains

We’ve carried these baths since our opening (5 years ago this month!),  and have ALWAYS been pleased with the quality and results.   Many families come back to get them again and again, finding their natural health support to be simple, effective and affordable.

2# – Regularly $14.99.   

Spring Sale through Saturday, March 30th, 2012 –

20% off -   $11.98, and a free quartz crystal!

Welcome Keleigh Lee, IBCLC!!

Indigo Forest is proud to announce a new collaboration with experienced lactation specialist, Keleigh Lee, IBCLC!

See Keleigh’s new breastfeeding classes offered in March & April!

Keleigh Lee, IBCLC, is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant trained to support mothers meet their breastfeeding goals. The IBCLC credential is the most advanced lactation certification available and ensures a level of expertise mothers need and deserve (www.iblce.org). Much misinformation exists and can have major negative impacts on breastfeeding success. Keleigh is a mother of four children who have all breastfed and knows how vulnerable and fragile the newborn stage can be.

My goal in providing breastfeeding guidance is to empower families to solve their breastfeeding challenges and get back on track. By inviting me into your life you share a trust with me and I will do all in my ability to hear your story with respect and caring as I help to work through your problems.”

Keleigh is also an accredited La Leche League Leader (www.lllaa.org) and a volunteer Lactation Consultant for the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program where she has helped hundreds of mother-baby pairs over the years. Her professional background as a medical illustrator and extensive lactation science education give her a solid medical foundation for handling a wide range of breastfeeding issues. She is a self-described “lactation geek” and will happily treat you to lactation geekery details if asked!

Here’s to Our Mothers

Well, we all have one.  Sometimes more.  Our Mothers.  How are you doing with yours?  This is just a musing, unbidden.   A holiday musing of loss and understanding, completion and transformation.

On my mind these days, holidays and the Mothers.  As a midwife, there is a special moment in which mothers become… although that ‘moment’ is often days, weeks, months long, and for sure, it’s not often that exact moment that so many expect.  When do mothers ‘unbecome’ – do they ever?

My mother passed on this season two years ago.  And this season, a dear friend’s mom just did the same.  Memorial services 2 years apart, same day.  In both cases, these fine ladies were given home funerals by their daughters.  My sister & I for Sharon, our friend for her Mom, Nancy.  This ancient way of caring for our dead, of honoring our mothers, became true expressions of our loss and grief and honor and respect.   Many who attended these services shared how healing they were to their own losses;  the stories of unmet needs at the time of significant deaths came pouring out.   So much like birth, where whole authentic experiences bring growth and healing not only to those present, but to so many who touch in.  Like birth, so many stories of unmet needs pouring out.

Perhaps we may choose, in this candlelit time of winter solstice, of holiday reflections, of the blessings & trials of family times, to welcome in authentic moments of true expression.  Perhaps first we dare to invite these moments with the relatives with the bright eyes and genuine questions.  Later, perhaps we explore authentic connections with the more challenging people in our lives.  Perhaps consider how we are going to care for those we love when they pass.  How will YOU be cared for?  By whom?  Efficient strangers?  People who will weep as they wash your hands, blessing and thanking them?  Authentic moments are indeed strong ones – richer, deeper, perhaps intense too.   Aren’t these the moments that we remember when we pause in ceremonial times?  When we pause to breathe deeply in remembrance over the candles of our chosen holiday?   There is a magnet on my refrigerator, “We don’t remember days….we remember moments.”   What moment are you remembering now?  We have a choice about what moments we create this today, this week, this December.

Here’s to our Mothers. To our Moments.  No, I do not think they ever “unbecome,”  not in our lives nor in theirs.  I miss my Mother so terribly, as so many do, even as I cheer her release and transformation.   And even as I welcome space from the tough work of that relationship.  Let us all hug a mother in this candlelit season – and if you know mothers, most of them will hug you just for being someone else’s child!  As the brave heroine of movie, “The Other Side of the Mountain,” once said, “I’m glad to have known someone that it is so damn hard to say good-bye to.”


Annual “Midnight Madness” – Friday Dec. 16th!

Don’t miss the wonder of our annual event – the best sales of the season, santa shopping, and party-time with you – our dear Indigo Family customers!  6-10 pm Friday December 16, 2011!

This year promises to be the best yet, with……

15% off store wide (every single thing included, except essential oils)

20% off every single children’s toy, game, book, and treasure

$1 and $5 tables, each loaded down with new & old favorites with savings ranging from 30-80%!

30% & 50% off many, many other items!

Brand new items in arriving for the holidays – cooperative games, beexwax crayons, blank Waldorf school notebooks,  ‘Waldorf’ style notecards and card holders for nature tables, Italian Washable Window Crayons, addictive gluten & dairy-free chocolates, wooden knights & other wooden toys, extensive new collection of Waldorf & Steiner books, and beautiful (guaranteed) glass straws!

Look for savings in every area, and a lovely serene shopping environment as only Indigo provides!   Enjoy some chocolate or mulled cider while you’re here, it’s our chance to enjoy your company AND help you shop for Hanukkah, Christmas, and more!

Elderberry Syrup Anyone?

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a little delicious magic potion in your cupboard when the sniffles sneak in?

Elderberry is your friend!   Look around your neighborhood, and you are likely to see these luscious dark berries hanging ripe and heavy, waiting for their chance to do their healing work.

Loaded with Vitamin C &  Vitamin E (great anti-oxidants), as well as Vitamin B, amino acids and so much more, Elderberry is a wonderful immune booster of the best kind.   Approved in Germany to medicinally combat colds and flues, it lowers LDL cholesterol, improves eyesight, and helps maintain good heart health.  However, elderberry’s primary value is its ability to combat bacterial and viral infections by providing aid to the immune system.  It secretes an enzyme that neutralizes a virus’s ability to corkscrew into your cells to insert it’s DNA strand!   Wow – nature’s anti-viral!   Do check out the greater details about elderberry through links such as the one above.  At Indigo Forest we have both dried organic berries that can be used to make your own syrup or added to tea, and also encapsulated blends for immune support by Nature’s Sunshine.

Or – if your neighbor has some fruity gifts, as mine did, it could be as easy as making a syrup:

Gently pick the fruit at the base of the stem where the big bunch comes together.  My kids and I laid them stem up on a plate until we were ready.  Gently hold them upside down and pull the berries off in clumps, avoiding stems as much as possible without getting too worried about it (bitter.)  Rinse if you really need to, hopefully not.  Put in non-reactive (and non-staining) pan like stainless, with a bit of water (more better than risking burning) and lid.  Low simmer while you are busy doing everything else in your life.   After they’re well cooked down (an hour?   I turned it off, went to bed, ignored it the next day, and continued the next morning!),  strain through your finest sieve.   While wearing your oldest clothes – this stuff STAINS, possible splatters.    Smoosh gently with a spoon until no more juicy drips release themselves.   Toss the mush with gratefulness into the compost or under a bush in your yard.  Pour still warm into a friendly jar, and then pour an equal amount of raw honey in as well.  It melts nicely without losing raw benefits as you stir it together.   Storing mine in fridge to avoid molds if we’re lucky enough to have it last through the winter.   It was well-received by the middle school testers last night, barely diluted in a tiny shot glass, with their probiotics and other lovely remedies in it’s friendly sweetness.   They woke without a sore throat complaint for the first time in a week.   Thank you elderberry!

Remember – THIS IS NOT MEDICAL ADVICE!  This is sharing an experience, please research in more detail for further medical qualities and full information.




Babies understand signs and symbols long before they are able to communicate.  Sign language is an amazing way to foster babies’ development and lesson frustration – many parents find that the “terrible twos” are not so terrible when babies have sign language as a way to express their needs (and understand yours!). Research shows that hearing children who have been taught some signing have improved reading ability, greater/earlier spoken vocabulary development, and even higher IQs than children who were not taught to sign.

Instructor Stephannie Moore is a Certified Instructor of Baby Signing Time, an amazingly interactive system that teaches ASL (American Sign Language) to babies aged 3 to 36 months through songs and play.  More info about the Signing Time system is found at: https://www.babysigningtime.com/.  The method can be started as early as 3 months, and many see their babies begin signing as early as 6-10 months.  Indigo Forest is proud to host both group and individual classes, enrolling now for Fall classes.

First series begins Saturday, September 24th, 2011.  4:00 – 4:45 pm, $15/class for child and all the family members they want to bring!   8 Class series.

Like An Alternative?

Signs for Flu shot are all over town, how about some alternatives? THIS THURSDAY September 15, 2011 by special request:  “Preparing Young Families for the Flu Season~naturally!”  11 am-12 noon.   Mama’s Health Club series with children welcome (it’s lively! :)    $10 preregistered by close Wednesday @ 6 pm. ($15/door)  734-807-9909.  See you there!!

Next classes include:

October 20:  Introducing First Solid Foods & Avoiding Allergies

November 17:  Homeopathy for Children:  Colic, Teething & More, Oh My!


Amethyst Mother Load!

We’ve just returned from the Gem Show with over 60# of beautiful amethyst cluster formations. Indigo Forest’s goals include making parenting & healthy lives easier, and what better way than to bring a beautiful bit of nature into your life?  Priced well below gem store rates ($1.99-15.99) – this week during Ann Arbor’s Art Fair  is your chance to pick out something very special for you, your family or home.

Below are some of the characteristics & properties that have been attributed to amethyst………

Amethyst is purple quartz, and is a meditative and calming stone. It works in the emotional, spiritual, and physical planes to provide calm, balance, patience, and peace. Amethyst is also beneficial when dealing with legal problems and money issues, which can lead to prosperity and abundance.

Emotionally, amethyst can help heal personal losses and grief. Amethyst has a gently sedative energy that promotes peacefulness, happiness, and contentment. It also brings emotional stability and inner strength, and can enhance flexibility and cooperation. Amethyst can help get rid of addictions (alcohol, drugs, smoking, etc.) and compulsive behaviors of all kinds.

In the psychic and spiritual realms, amethyst is an excellent all-purpose stone that can increase spirituality and enhance intuition and psychic powers of all kinds. It does this by making a clear connection between the earth plane and other planes and worlds. Amethyst is also excellent for meditation and lucid dreaming. It is known to open one’s channels to telepathy, past life regression, clairaudience, clairvoyance, and communication with angels. Amethyst also protects against psychic attacks, especially during spiritual work, and protects one from thieves, and protects travelers.

Physically amethyst is said by spiritual healers and mystical lore to heal the withdrawal symptoms of any sort of addiction, help with headaches, insomnia, arthritis, diabetes, pain relief, circulatory system issues, endocrine system problems, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, immune system deficiencies,asthma, phobias, pregnancy and preventing miscarriage, menopause, PMS, and general healing.

Amethyst is associated with the third eye and crown chakras primarily, but can also open the heart chakra.