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Below you will find a selection of the most recent entries from bloggers in our Family section. To view the entries from individual bloggers, click on the links below:

  • Birgit Suess is a Swiss-American who grew up between the US and Switzerland and speaks English, German and Swiss-German. Because of a worldwide shortage of Speech Therapists, she uses technology to connect special needs students around the world with English speaking Speech Therapists. With almost 20 years of experience as a Speech Therapist and 10 years experience with Teletherapy, she is a pioneer in the Teletherapy world. Her personal specialty is working on social language with high functioning children on the Autism Spectrum. Her passion is finding new and innovative ways to help children with special needs.

  • Dr. Irina Schurov is a Nutritional Neuroscientist with a PhD from Cambridge University (UK) and over 20 years’ experience in science and health-providing services. She created and founded LiveRight, an initiative to help others through nutrition and wellbeing strategies. By building an educational platform around healthy eating habits, by restoring the relationships between people and food, by supporting your individual circumstances and through personalized coaching in nutrition, she wants to help you and your family achieve the optimal balance between help and life.

  • Micaela Crespo started her expat adventures at the age of 17. During her expat journey she obtained a PhD in Chemical Engineering, she became a project manager, started blogging, got married and had two children. She believes all expat mums have the potential of carrying out their dreams! She created Expat Lifehacks to help expat mothers who feel overwhelmed and lost develop the confidence and strategies they need to feel fully supported and thrive.

  • Hiba Samawi (formerly Giacoletto)
    Hiba is a Psychologist and Coach working in Geneva, Lausanne and online. She previously ran Healthwise.ch, a health coaching business where she also created healthy recipes. She now specializes mostly in difficulties around relationships, emotions, making healthy change and eating, and also offers group sessions, both in-person in Geneva/Lausanne and online.

  • Dr. Penny Fraser
    Dr Penny is a British-trained Emergency Medicine doctor, who lives in Geneva.  She is also the mother of two busy little skiers aged 7 and 8. Along with Dr Michelle Wright and her other colleagues at HealthFirst, she has a passion for delivering health education and First Aid training to the English-speaking community in Switzerland. 

  • Milena McRae

    Milena McRae works with individuals and groups from all walks of life, helping them build their dreams, accelerate their results, and create richer, more fulfilling lives.  As a certified life coach, she specialises in helping you discover your purpose and create an environment that is supportive of it.  In working with Milena, you will be guided to analyse your existing beliefs, patterns of thinking and behaviors that are at the core of your current results and then transform and align them with your desired results.

  • Johdi Woodford
    Born in Zimbabwe in 1979, Johdi discovered Pilates in 1999 when a leg injury ended her marathon running career and an osteopath suggested she try Pilates. Arriving in Switzerland in 2004, she decided to make her passion her career and trained to become a Pilates Instructor after the birth of her first child. Johdi opened Little Bird Pilates in 2014 with the aim of sharing her passion for intelligent exercise to a wider audience. Her main aim is to help people, of any age and any sporting background, to find freedom of movement, and gain strength and suppleness without pain and discomfort.

  • Tanya Jeannet
    With children of her own, Tanya understands only too well the challenges of working and having children, and is determined to provide a service, through her franchise business, Rockmybaby, that will help make life a little easier for families when it comes to childcare. She strives to help parents feel confident in the care of their children so that they can have some well-deserved time-out’s for themselves.
  • Duncan Delreeve (formerly Reeve) - Peak of Wellbeing
    Duncan has been in the health, fitness and wellbeing industry for over 19 years and works with clients in Europe and the UK on a one to one basis, in small groups and via workshops. His specialist areas include Golf Performance Conditioning, Back Pain and Core Strengthening, Rehabilitation and Corrective Exercise.

  • Jennie Delreeve (formerly Delbridge) - Peak of Wellbeing
    Jennie has worked professionally in the health and fitness industry for over 15 years and is passionate about helping others to achieve peak health and wellbeing.  She works on a one to one basis and runs workshops, talks and seminars throughout Europe, including the UK.

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By Hiba Giacoletto, Wiser Humans

It has been six months since the end of my 11-year marriage and I wanted to share my personal experience of getting through the past six months in the hope this might help others, too.

I have room for it all
I learned that I could feel deep sadness about the end of this chapter, this identity, this relationship - AND ALSO excitement, gratitude, anxiety, doubt and regret all at once. In the past I would have denied some of these emotions as not being ‘real’ because I thought they couldn’t co-exist. And yet they can, and even more: They always do when we are honest with ourselves.

I learned that I had room for all of these emotions, that I didn’t need to reduce my emotional experience to ‘just’ grieving. That it was OK to feel whatever I was feeling - that I could hold all these experiences at once.

Grief ain’t linear
One of the most important experiences I had was realizing just how un-linear emotions are. One minute I would be feeling OK, and then BAM - a painful pang of remembering would show up. Or just when I thought I was reaching the end of it, a new realization that of this is really over would bring on a whole new stage of grieving. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

It all felt more like waves than a linear progression of feeling better. Again, being OK with this, even expecting it, made all the difference.

Peaceful turmoil
I have not cried or grieved as much in my life as I have in the past months. And yet, there has also been a sense of peacefulness because I was not fighting my emotions. I was neither trying to repress them nor allowing them to explode all over the place. As much as possible, I was simply allowing them to be, to hang out.

I noticed that inner peace is not about not having emotions or difficulties in life and being permanently zen. That isn’t realistic. It isn't real life. Instead, it is about bringing an OK-ness with whatever we are experiencing in all its messiness.

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For this blog, I have invited HealthFirst’s Midwife and mother of four, Polly Pupulin, to give us her 5 top tips for expectant mothers....

By Polly Pupulin, Midwife, www.healthfirst.ch

I love midwifery and have done since I first started in 2001. Part of my work is the privilege to introduce parents to the amazing ‘dance’ that happens between the baby and mother during pregnancy and labour during a Birth Preparation Course.

If I could personally give five tips to every expectant parent here in Switzerland, this is what I would say:

1.    You have a choice where and how you birth your baby.  The birth is not just a medical procedure but involves many other factors such as your personal preferences, your cultural expectations, your previous experiences of childbirth and what both you and your partner believe birth is all about.

2.    The best form of ‘natural’ pain relief is a supportive birth partner and a compassionate midwife in whom you have confidence.  You may have heard of epidurals – and they definitely have their place – but there are many compatible and harmonising pain relief options to learn about.

3.    The labour process is a blend of you and your baby working together.  Both of you have a role and will be communicating together.  Knowing this may calm you and help you feel part of a loving team.

4.    Yes, your life will change when your baby is born.  However everyone reacts and adjusts differently and you won’t know until the challenge is there.  So welcome to the journey – and enjoy it!

5.    You may be away from your normal family support network in your home country but you are not alone.  Create or join a new group of like-minded parents and parents-to-be here in your country of residence – in person and online. Having this support within your own community is proven to reduce your risk of post-natal depression.

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By Hiba Giacoletto, Wiser Humans

Connection is why we're here; it is what gives purpose and meaning to our lives.  - Brené Brown

A few months ago, my 11 year marriage broke-up.

Like all humans, I need connection. I crave connection. I can’t live without connection.

Learning to be just me after 15 years of being a couple, I needed to redefine connection.

I had heard Barbara Fredrickson speak about her research on Love 2.0 at a conference and I really related to her way of reframing love.

Her idea is that love is about so much more than romantic connections.

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by Milena McRae, www.milenamcrae.com

According to Mayo Clinic research, embracing forgiveness and relieving yourself of past pains plays a vital role in our Physical, Emotional and Spiritual health.  

On the Physical level, letting go of the past boosts your immune system, lowers your blood pressure improving heart health, relieves acute and chronic pain, improves digestion and balances your hormones.  Emotionally, forgiveness reduces stress, anxiety and hostility, enhances self-esteem, increases compassion and opens us to better relationships. On the Spiritual level, we feel re-connected with our closer and wider environment, our world expands and we are open to hear the innate guidance on how to proceed every day in alignment with our greater purpose.

Yet for many, forgiving and letting go doesn't come spontaneously.   I would like to share with you the practice I have developed and find really easy to follow.

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by Milena McRae, www.milenamcrae.com

As we go through life, we distinguish as clearly as black and white between the good and the bad - we learn to do this from a very young age as we are trained by our well-meaning environment to become an individual who fits in with the expectations of the system and those around us.  So our beliefs about what is good and what is bad are deeply ingrained in us and form the basis of our habits, behaviours and choices we make later in life.

Once established, we use this framework to navigate through life and make conscious choices.  Habitually then, when we don't like our circumstances, we are prompted into action, focusing on the negative results in order to rectify them.  This causes us to focus our energy and time on the negative side of things before the desired circumstances seem even possible.