Ginger Moon Rises to the Top in Business Plan Competition

 

fedex100finalist

Ginger Moon, a mother-owned, worker cooperative has made it as a finalist in the Fedex Small Business Grant Competition 2014. Out of thousands of entries from across the country, one hundred small businesses were selected as finalists for a chance to win a total of $50,000 in prizes, including a grand prize of $25,000. Ginger Moon was the only worker cooperative in the competition and gathered over 2,000 votes from its community of supporters, allowing it to move on to the next round.

 

In 2011, Alexandra Lopez Reitzes, Janvieve Williams Comrie and Maricruz Badia opened Ginger Moon in order to provide much needed emotional, mental and culinary support to pregnant women, women that had just given birth and wo

men that are nursing.  Today their signature service, Food Doulas is all about mothering the mother, and providing her revitalizing and healing foods during pregnancy, childbirth and nursing.

 

“This is already turning out to be a great year for worker cooperatives. We’re thrilled that Ginger Moon is a finalist in this competition. When one cooperative succeeds, people get inspired, the effects are contagious, and the economy shifts.” Says Omar Freilla, Coordinator at Green Worker Cooperatives.

 

Ginger Moon went through Green Worker Cooperative renowned Coop-Academy in fall 2012.  The academy is an intensive boot camp for cooperative green businesses.  “Ginger Moon is a business that encourages our clients to eat local and organic whenever possible.  We are establishing relationships with local farms and producers.  Ginger Moon is good for all mothers, including mother earth”, says Maricruz Badia of Ginger Moon.

 

At the core of this mother-owned business is motherhood.  Between the worker owners there are six children ranging from 10 months to 11 years of age. “Ginger Moon is changing and challenging how work is done.  For example, we have created employment policies through consensus building principles, these policies are in turn good for each of us as owners, both individually and collectively”, says Alexandra Lopez Reitzes of Ginger Moon.

 

Ginger Moon has been self and crowd funded up until now.  The FedEx Small Business Grant award will allow them to expand services to reach more women by adding a delivery service, ,cooking workshops, and trainings.

 

Winners of the Fedex Small Business Grant competition will be announced on March 26th, 2014.  For more information about Ginger Moon, visit www.ginger-moon.com

 

 

Ginger Moon Top 10 valentine’s day recommendations for Pregnant or Nursing Moms!

 

IMG_1555_p

1.  Breakfast in bed, with a protein-rich granola cereal accompanied by Maricruz’s Green Tropical Smoothie

 

2. A heaping portion of any of Ginger Moon Signature Dishes

 

3. Chocolate Fondue on tap with the team of Green Worker Cooperatives Co-opoly is for lovers

4. Breastfeeding Class or Baby Wearing Workshop with Uptown Birth

5. Book your complimentary connection call with life coach Britt Bolnick from In Arms Coaching

6. Set up  your Food Doula Services and/or Registry with Ginger Moon. Give us us a call at 917-400-6189 or email us at info@ginger-moon.com

7. Go to a Prenatal Yoga Class or a Mommy and Me class at the Prenatal Yoga Center

8.  Indulge in some sweet treats from Ginger Moon, especially their Yummy Mommy Brownies

9. Get some lingerie and/or maternity/nursing underwear at Brazen Lingerie.

10. Dance! Go out or stay home, put on some music and move that beautiful mama body!

Mommy Smoothies: Ginger Moon’s Favorite Picks

Summer, fall, winter and spring, any season is great for a delicious, refreshing, blended drinks, yes, we are talking about smoothies!

All of Ginger Moon favorites smoothies are packed with real fresh fruits and vegetables — a guilt-free indulgence, and what is the best aspect of the all mighty smoothy? There’s no shortage of flavorful finds in your house or market to include in your blender, and Ginger Moon has decided to share their favorites mother friendly ingredients that you can mix and match for your delicious couture smoothie!

Avocado: Avo what? Yes, avocado. When blended with a sweet fruit such as mango, banana, soursop, or kiwi, the result is light, fluffy and just delicious! Avocado adds a lot of fiber, protein and healthy fats to any smoothie.

Spirulina: Adding just a teaspoon to your blender can do wonders to your smoothie. Not only making it a superfood smoothie, but also upping the protein content. While not my favorite in the distinct taste and the green color, I must admit that I love adding it to smoothies because it has so much benefits that it outdoes the taste factor (you honestly get used to it after a few smoothies).

Peanut Butter: Protein rich and creamy! I love to add peanut butter to frozen bananas, sesame seeds, ice, cinnamon, and almond milk. Sometimes I add a little bit of agave.

Roasted Sesame Seeds: High in protein, calcium and iron, nursing mothers in Puerto Rico add it to water, ice and raw sugar to stimulate milk production. Try it out in milk, almond, coconut or yogurt based smoothies.

Kale: During my pregnancy I craved green smoothies which I prepared with kale, celery, broccoli, green apples, pineapples, ginger and water.  Sometimes I added either apple or pineapple juice.  Rich in iron, fiber and a refreshing good portion of raw vegetables and fruits.
So don’t be scared to try out fruits and vegetables, you might be surprised.

What are your favorite smoothie ingredients?

Mothering the Mother

By Maricruz Badia New mother receiving support

Ginger Moon is committed to providing services that truly impact and support the livelihood and well-being of new mothers.  Our work is very personal to us. Our experience as mothers is what informs who we are, what we do and the services we offer the most.

In our previous post, Every Woman Needs This, we wrote about the type of support and care Ginger Moon believes women should have during their births. Today we want to share Ginger Moon’s vision for the type of care and support new mothers should receive AFTER they give birth.

In many other countries around the world there are traditions that dictate the role and care that a women receives following the birth of a child.  For instance in the Spanish speaking Caribbean there is a tradition referred to as cuarentena or puerperio, this period is regarded as essential for the well-being of the new mother and baby.  This postpartum tradition dictates a period of approximately 40 days or 6 to 8 weeks during which the mother focuses on acclimating to nursing and caring of her newborn, her nutrition and well-being, while others in the family or community take care of cooking, cleaning and the other children, if there are any.  The mother is usually cared for by other women with a regiment of special foods and herbs so that she can fully recuperate from birth.

The Ginger Moon Food Doula service was inspired by this tradition, and by our own experiences mothering in a time when cuarentena is not really practiced, and new mothers are expected to go back to work and/or her daily routines shortly after giving birth.

Ginger Moon believes that in order to thrive after giving birth, mothers should:

  • feel fully supported by a community of family, friends or other mothers, so that she can enjoy caring for her newborn and for herself
  • feel comfortable to ask for help AND know that others want to provide support; they just need to be asked
  • have access to wholesome organic foods and hydration throughout her pregnancy and after giving birth
  • have ample time to recuperate from birth and focus on her newborn and herself
  • be reassured that she “got this”; she has what it takes to care for herself and her growing family

Recently two of us in Ginger Moon gave birth to our second child.  Having our families far away meant that in order to receive the type of care and support we believe women should receive after giving birth, we had to create alternatives through our communities of friends in New York City.

 Here are some suggestions Ginger Moon recommends so that you can experience yourself supported after giving birth:

Be willing to ask for support & accept the support and assistance of others
During my pregnancy I worked full time, completed two business development programs and cared for my 9 year old.  That did not leave me much time to prepare the home for the baby.  My girlfriends and I planned a pampering day to take place during my 38th week.  Days prior, a friend visited me at home and realize everything I still needed to do to prepare for the baby, so she suggested that instead of going to get pedicures I request for my friends to help me organize my house, so I did. Twelve of my friends showed up at my house during the planned date and carried out a massive organization effort.  It was a day-long event.  Little did I know I was actually nesting-hard and would give birth the following morning!

Create a Mother Support Calendar
We suggest you request a close friend or relative, that will be good at following up with others, to take on this effort.  The less you do the better! Surrender control and allow others to take care of you!!! 

    1. Make a list of the type of support you will need before and after you give birth.  You can include things such as cleaning, cooking, organizing baby’s room or area, assembling baby’s gadgets, holding and burping newborn, caring for other children, giving you a massage, etc. Be creative.  Do not leave anything out.  If you do not know what to include ask other mothers and people who know you well.
    2. Determine when in relation to the baby’s birth you would like assistance with each item on your list.
    3. Enlist support from your friends and family with each item. Make sure to gather contact information for each person.  Let them know with what and when you project to need their support.  Remind them that your due date is an approximations of when the baby will be born, so someone will call them to reconfirm when to come after you give birth.  Think outside the box; reach out to other mother’s in meet up groups and virtual communities. We have seen perfect strangers participating in virtual mother-communities providing life changing support to other mothers! Remember, people want to support, they just need to be asked!
    4. After the baby is born reconfirm the date and time when you will receive support. Avoid doing this part, you will already be busy with your newborn. This is a great task for your partner, a close friend or a relative. We recommend you spread the support during as long of a period as possible. Schedule only one person each day.  If someone will be coming to stay with you for a couple of weeks, schedule anyone else to come after they leave.

Prioritize proper nutrition
Request that others bring you foods that you like and adhere to your postpartum, nutritional and lifestyle needs. Store these prepared meals in your refrigerator and freezer, so that you can easily access them, warm up and eat. Remember, if you are nursing you will need to consume approximately 400 additional calories each day!
Ginger Moon Food Doulas provide home cooked meals to new mothers, tailored based on your palate and unique needs after giving birth. 

Prioritize proper hydration
Constantly drink water. Hydration is essential for nursing mothers and to support your optimal well-being.  Keep water bottles next to your bed, baby changing station, nursing chair, kitchen, etc. Have the people that come in to support you refill them constantly. Every time you are by one of these areas, drink! Challenge yourself to how quickly you can finish each bottle.

Rest!
Think of yourself as a toddler who will have a tantrum if they do not take their nap. Your body is already experiencing a massive physical and hormonal shift, you have a new baby to care for; rest is your best friend.  You probably heard this before, but we can’t stress it enough, nap when your baby sleeps! The more rested you are the better equipped you will be.

Ginger Moon is committed to mothering the mother.  We believe that together we can cause a paradigm shift and give birth to a culture where every mother is fully taken care of so that she can thrive at caring for herself and her expanding family.

We want to hear from you. How was your postpartum experience? How do you think new mothers should be cared for and regarded?

Hot summer, cooling foods

r-4740_6ea2abSummer is here and in full effect! And that means that heat waves do happen.  Last week, we highlighted how to beat the heat with summer drinks and keep hydrated.  This week, we highlight some cooling foods for you.

Pregnant, breastfeeding or not, we all get hot and being hot can also reflect in feeling tired,  at times it can lead to headaches and nausea.  How can we help prevent feeling like this? One way is keeping hydrated and cool.My personal experience with hot weather was once a miserable one since it is very easy to get dehydrated especially during pregnancy and/or nursing, and when we add holding, carrying and playing with hot and sweaty yet active infants and toddlers, believe it or can intensify and speed up dehydration quite quickly.

So what tips does Ginger Moon have for you?

1.  Continue to keep hydrated with water:  Carry a bottle of water exclusively for you at all times (yes even in the house!), and remember to drink it.  My toddler son always seems to get thirsty as soon as I pull out my bottle, my solution, I got him a different colored bottle just for him (adult bottles seem so much more interesting for many toddlers), and we both enjoy a cool drink. (you can also make a Ginger Moon Iced Tea from one of our many tea choices). Click here for more tips on drinks.

2. Make cooling snacks for yourself.  I personally like freezing grapes and mango cubes.  Easy to do and very easy to access.  Of course watermelon is a staple in my refrigerator during all summer months.

3. Try out a new cooling recipe.  Ginger Moon is all about coming up with recipes that both satisfy our nutritious and our gustatory (taste) needs.  I personally like my Watermelon and Cilantro salad (recipe below), it is healthy, highly hydrating and I cannot deny it, its delicious!

Please share with us your cooling snacks and foods.

Watermelon Cilantro Salad
Recipe Type: Summer Salads
Author: Ginger Moon
Prep time:
Total time:
Keep hydrated with a delicious and nutritious salad guaranteed to satisfy your palate.
Ingredients
  • 10 cups cubed watermelon
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 3 Tbsp lime juice
  • 1/4 chopped red onions
  • 1 cup chopped cucumber
  • 1/4 cup feta cheese (optional)
  • sea salt to taste
  • cracked black pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Pour the lime juice on the red onions in small bowl
  2. Let rest for 5 minutes
  3. Gently mix all the remaining ingredients in large bowl
  4. Pour lime juice and onions unto watermelon and other ingredients
  5. Gently mix salad together.
  6. Enjoy!

Ginger Moon featured on Mom.me around Maternity Meal Plans

Maternity Meal Plans: Tips to create healthy — and tasty — meals during pregnancy

By Karen LoBello

You receive the joyous news that you’re going to have a baby. There’s so much to think about, but at the top of your list is making sure you eat healthy foods that will nourish your body and your little one. Your doctor will typically recommend a prenatal vitamin and mineral supplement and he might talk to you about your diet. But let’s face it — you are in charge of what goes into your mouth at meal times. Read Full Article on Mom.me