Des Moines Parent Spotlight: Tammy Watkins

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Des Moines Parent Spotlight: Tammy Watkins

Tammy Watkins is a mom and local business owner you should have a part of your village. Her passion for educating and supporting expecting and postpartum mothers is incredible. Des Moines is lucky to have her! Learn more about her business, Birthwell and some of her best parenting tips. I LOVE the quarterly goal idea.

Give us a little background on your family and personal life! How many kids do you have? Have you lived in Des Moines all your life?

Hello! My name is Tammy Watkins and I LOVE this city and it’s an honor to be featured here! Des Moines is my hometown; it’s where I was born, raised, and joyfully moved back to in order to plant deeper roots and raise my own family. My Husker-loving husband, Zac, and I have four kiddos…Ky is 11, Adlee is 8, Amira is 5 and Karsten is 3. Our family also grew last year when we added Ela, our au pair, to the mix. Although this was a scary adventure to take on, it’s been one of our biggest blessings! We are a homeschooling, cloth diapering, home-birthing, whole-body health-seeking kind of family who loves spending time on the lake, snow skiing, and traveling.

What is your business, and what do you do?

My business is Birthwell. My passion has always been educating and empowering pregnant women, and also helping their children, through chiropractic care. We have the privilege of coming alongside women at a very exciting and vulnerable time in their lives and encourage them to make self-care a priority, ask questions and be informed, and set themselves up for the most comfortable and ideal pregnancy and birth possible. One of our biggest joys is seeing friendships develop as moms will stay and feed their babies and let their children play while they discuss common wins and struggles. It’s a unique dynamic, as we only see pregnant women and children. It’s been amazing to team up with lactation consultants, midwives, OBs, doulas and more to help women find more comfort in pregnancy, help establish the best position for mom’s pelvis and therefore baby, which in turn has been proven to shorten labor and pushing times and decreased back labor. With our care, newborns are able to sleep more comfortably, nurse more efficiently and avoid more of the common illnesses.

My husband also owns a functional medicine clinic, The Livewell Clinic, that focuses on discovering the root cause of dis-ease and illness. Treatment is based on lifestyle and dietary recommendations/modifications, nutraceuticals, and nutritional IV therapy. I spend a lot of my time at Livewell as well and enjoy supporting our great team there.

Why did you become a small business owner?

My love for children has always run deep, as I grew up in a home where we constantly had other families around with my mother’s daycare business. When I decided to pursue chiropractic care, I had the honor of studying under the prenatal and pediatric specialist there, Dr. Anne Spicer. She was so kind and the work she was doing was changing lives and it was incredible to see. She also only saw women and children, and one of those women invited Dr. Spicer and me to attend her birth. What I witnessed that late night in 2005 changed my focus and vision and I knew that my heart was made to serve pregnant women and their children. My husband and I started Livewell in 2009 as a joint functional medicine and chiropractic effort, and then in 2014 Birthwell were born as a center specifically for the pregnant women and children that I desired to serve. I became a small business owner to provide care for our community in a way tailored to the I could best provide. It was a leap of faith for our family and our livelihood. And, getting to live day-to-day life with our amazing teams has been a huge blessing-it’s such a privilege to get to create and support strong networks.

Where is your favorite place to take your children to play indoors?

I don’t know if I can pick just one…we love our local libraries, the Valley Community Center and The Science Center of Iowa.

Where is your favorite place to take your children to play outdoors?

Our local neighborhood park and pond.

Parent’s day/night out. Describe your perfect parent only day/night out in Des Moines.

One of our favorite nights out includes dinner at Alba, St. Kilda’s or Table 128, followed by a show at Noce.

What are some tips on juggling parenthood, working, and personal life?

  • A very visible family calendar is key in our house (listing out meals, schedules, to-lists)
  • We make a quarterly goal to do something above the ordinary as a family and as a couple
  • LISTS, lots of lists
  • Set goals, and write them down and revisit them often
  • Clear communication and expectations with your support village

What is your number one parenting tip?

Pause, breath and think before you speak. Especially with the high stress of being a business owner and your mind constantly full of ‘all of the things’, take a moment to be present and be intentional in how you speak and what you say to your kiddos.

Follow Her:


Facebook: @birthwellchiro


Erin Huiatt

Erin is a reliable resource and stepping stone for women and families to find support and make connections within our community. She wants families to feel confident to reach out and ask for help and advice to get pointed in the right direction. She enjoys traveling and exploring with her two children in tow!

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