You’re finally over the shock of seeing those double blue lines. Now what? Start by perusing this handy guide to the absolute best of the best for Collin County moms and babies. Local moms voted on their favorites for everything from baby-sitting sources to childbirth classes and we tallied the results. From the best class for tiny swimmers to the best baby-clothing boutique, it’s all here in our Best for Moms and Babies 2015.
Best Hospital to Have a Baby
Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano
The newly renovated labor-delivery-recovery suites at Texas Health Plano are designed to make you (and the rest of the family) comfortable from labor to recovery, with furnishings for a home-like feel and specialized medical assistance always close by. Mom and baby are both in good hands: Boasting Collin County’s largest NICU and special designation by the World Health Organization as a breastfeeding-supportive hospital, Texas Health Plano ensures that each new little one gets the best start possible.
Best Birthing Center
Allen Birthing Center
If wisdom really does come with age, then the Allen Birthing Center might just be the smartest around. As the oldest birthing center in Collin County, the historic 1908 Bacus-Brown residence-turned-birthing-center has served more than 1,300 families from all over Dallas-Fort Worth and even offers home birth services. Outside, a gazebo, porch swing and private garden create a relaxing environment for your birthing experience. Inside, the three certified midwives continue to make families feel at home in two quaint birthing suites.
Amy Giles, Allen Birthing Center
Amy Giles felt called to midwifery after experiencing the care and support of a midwife during her own first pregnancy. Since then, the certified nurse-midwife and mother of two has overseen more than a thousand births at homes, hospitals and birth centers, including Allen Birthing Center (winner of Best Birthing Center), which she owns with husband Jeff. Amy and her staff are committed to exceptional health care in a warm environment, and she maintains privileges at two local hospitals.
She’s a mother, a grandmother and a doula of over thirty years. Jessie Prim says she realized she wanted to serve women in the childbearing years at the birth of her first child and counts her work as a doula one of her greatest joys. Prim is passionate about empowering women with knowledge and reducing common fears associated with childbirth, and works closely with expecting parents and their birth team to ensure they achieve the type of birth they envision, whether that be at home, in a birthing center or at a hospital.
Best Childbirth Classes
Who says childbirth classes have to be boring? Natural Beginnings strives to make their childbirth classes educational and fun by encouraging couples to work together as a team. Couples will complete activities designed to prepare them for childbirth in the comfort of the instructor’s home. Small class sizes and an informal atmosphere provide ample time for questions and individual attention for each mom- and dad-to-be. Have a busy schedule? Arrange a four-class, private birth course for $625.
Best Prenatal Massage
Get rid of those new aches and pains during a 1–2-hour customized treatment at Massage Envy, which offers a massage specifically designed to relieve many of the normal discomforts associated with pregnancy. A handful of locations in the area means you can drop what you’re doing and schedule an appointment no matter where your day takes you.
Best Prenatal Workout
Prenatal Yoga at The Medical Center of Plano
Don’t put away your yoga mat yet: Prenatal yoga can help you learn relaxation and breathing techniques to use when it’s time for baby to arrive. The Medical Center of Plano offers weekly yoga classes just for moms-to-be at $10 per class or $50 for six classes; attend as many as you need to find your center.
Best Mommy & Baby Workout
Mommy & Me Yoga at The Medical Center of Plano
Being a new mom takes all kinds of energy. Refresh your mental and emotional faculties while working towards that pre-stretchy pants goal at The Medical Center of Plano’s weekly Mommy & Me Yoga class, designed for new moms and babies 6 weeks and older. You and baby will bond during gentle exercises, stretching and relaxation techniques led by a certified instructor, and you’ll have plenty of time to chat with other women giving this parenting thing a go.
Best Maternity Store
Have you ever wondered how celebrities like Jessica Simpson seem to look flawless throughout their pregnancies? After shopping her line at Motherhood Maternity, you too can sport that Simpson look without spending a fortune. You can also shop a lacey line of nursing intimates created by famous burlesque dancer Dita Von Teese. Don’t forget to check out the simple sugar scrubs in green tea, lavender and coffee.
Best Baby Furniture Boutique
Cat and the Fiddle
With the help of Cat and the Fiddle, you can transform an empty room into a nursery as unique as your child. Custom art, various styles of furniture and bedding and the employees’ expert advice make nesting or remodeling a breeze. Even if you’re not looking to be on the next episode of Extreme Makeover: Nursery Edition, stop by to see the handmade children’s accessories and gifts (think: frilly headbands and fuzzy hats).
Best Baby Clothing Boutique
Dimples and Dandelions
It’s been a big year for Dimples and Dandelions. Since going under new ownership, the boutique has completely refreshed its inventory, adding new lines, new sizes and an assortment of custom items. Stop in to stock up on onesies or grab a gift for your next baby shower. Dimples and Dandelions offers custom-embroidered shirts and other personalized items.
Best Resale Shop
Once Upon a Child
Is your wallet struggling to keep up with your child’s growth? Sell those barely worn britches at Once Upon a Child or trade them in for an affordable upgrade. Shop racks of gently worn costumes, dancewear, sleepwear and swimwear too. But Once Upon a Child is not just good for duds — stock up on other must-haves from the impressive collection of baby gear and toys at this one-stop shop.
Best Child-care Center for Babies
Infant classes at Primrose Schools focus on three things: active minds, healthy bodies and happy hearts. A low teacher/infant ratio ensures that each child receives adequate care and attention while enjoying, observing and exploring the classroom. The curriculum at Primrose Schools balances social, emotional, physical and academic learning — meaning babies will be more than prepared come preschool. Early education at Primrose Schools starts as early as 6 weeks old and continues through age 5.
Best Baby-sitting Source
Mom’s Best Friend
There’s a reason they win year after year. Mom’s Best Friend has baby-sitting down to a science. Prospective baby-sitters and nannies are thoroughly screened before being handpicked and carefully matched with local families. The experts at Mom’s Best Friend are pros at matching families with long-term nannies, but the company also offers temporary care, nighttime baby-sitters and holiday and sick care.
Best Mommy and Baby Class
Starting at just 2 months old, babies and their parents can begin moving, playing and exploring at Gymboree. Developmentally appropriate classes are designed to help children reach important milestones at their individual pace through sensory stimulation, problem-solving games, storytelling and, of course, play and music. Visit the website to print a free class pass for your first visit.
Best Infant Swim School
Emler Swim School
It’s no wonder Emler is No. 1: They’ve been perfecting their Waterbabies class for over 40 years, making sure that infants as young as 6 months feel comfortable and safe in the water. Try their balanced method of swimming instruction mixed with songs and playtime at a free orientation class, offered on most Saturdays. The best part? You get to be right there in the water with your little one, helping every step (er, stroke) of the way.