Speaking of birth...If you are expecting a sweet bundle of love or already have one, here are a few great books to add to your library.
Preparing for Birth
Birthing from Within by Pam England - Good resource for preparing for the spiritual and physical reality of childbirth without creating anxiety in the reader. It's one of the only books I read on the subject that explores a woman's expectations of childbirth and offers a review of options without condemning the reader if she has chosen a hospital birth. If you're going to buy a book on the topic, skip the "What to expect..." books (they list everything that can possibly go wrong - like your mind doesn't explore these possibilities already!) and just read this one.
If you're looking for a month by month or week by week update on what's going on with your body and your baby, there are some great - FREE - online tools that aren't so scary!
Herbal for the Childbearing Year, Susan Weed. Great book on healthy herbs for moms before, during and after pregnancy. Susan Weed is definitely a very earthy person but has an encyclopedic level of knowledge about herbs. I refer to this book frequently.
After your baby arrives
The Baby Book - Dr. William Sears and Martha Sears R.N. - The main reason I love this book is that it is awesome for the middle of the night when your baby is crying and you're trying not to freak out. It is a sort of middle of the road book - empowering parents to understand basic stages of growth and common baby ailments. Dr. Sears does advocate immunization but gives parents suggestions for what to do before running to the doctor. I avoided a lot of unecessary doctor visits with this book. Oh, and besides running a very successful pediactric practice, this couple has raised eight children of their own! One of their sons is on an afternoon show called "The Doctors".
Smart Medicine for a Healthier Child - Zand, Roundtree and Walton. My sister-in-law bought this book for me. It also lists common childhood ailments and different treatment modalities for each ailment, including Herbal, Nutritional, Homeopathic or Allopathic (what an M.D. would prescribe).
I am passionate about being educated about health. We moms are our families' best doctors. Our intuition gives us insight into our kids' health even before we can feel that they have a fever. Our love for them gives us the strength to stay up all night when they're sick. But education give us confidence that we know the best course of action for a sick little person - whether that's a home remedy and rest or a trip to the doctor. Now that's a good feeling.
Blessings on you as you "doctor" your family. Hope these books help!