The vision of a boutique that offered products and resources for new and expectant families began in the heart of doula Rhonda Davis. She partnered up with Erica Matteson, founder and owner of Renaissance Childbirth and Postpartum Professionals, to take steps to see this dream a reality. The pair met diligently for several years formulating a business plan, but mostly feeling it was a very lofty plan that would need divine intervention to come to pass. In the summer of 2010, doula Karen Wells joined the team, each woman passionate about supporting new families they moved forward together. As birth and postpartum doulas they have a special understanding of what new families need and know that mamas and newborns thrive when they are surrounded by their community and trusted resources, this was the drive and focus of the vision.
The search for a location began in Clackamas and then moved to Vancouver, knowing that these are the most underserved areas in regards to healthy baby products, classes and care providers. When Punky Doodlebugs, a baby boutique in Vancouver and a proud, trusted provider of breast pump rentals and lactation support, decided it was time to close her doors, the team decided to step in and make an effort to fill the void this great community resource was going to leave.
With the wind in their sails, the team took possession of the 1300 sq. ft. commercial home on September 1st and served their first client on September 3rd, 2010.
The doors officially opened September 13th, 2010 servicing Breast Pump Rentals and Lactation Consults. The Boutique began filling its shelves, classes were being scheduled and the first of the Santé Mama’s Practitioners joined the team.
In the summer of 2011 Karen and her family felt they were being called in a new direction, and January 2012 Karen left to peruse a new dream of farming. She and her family are now raising chickens for eggs and living the life of being farmers. The view from her front window has the most amazing sunrise that reminds her she is right where she needs to be.
In October of 2013 Rhonda and Erica had the opportunity to again help keep a trusted resource in the community and purchased Milagros Boutique in Portland Oregon.
We are honored to have this opportunity to keep Milagros vision going not only for the community but for the past owners. We look at it like we have adopted a miracle child and are excited to help her grow and learn from the great foundation she comes with.
Both Milagros and Sante Mama are different in personalities, our vision is to combine the strengths of both into each other and form an even stronger community resource in each location.
Rhonda and Erica have been building a soft landing zone for new families at Sante’ Mama and now have the opportunity to do the same at Milagros Boutique. It is not uncommon for families to leave the hospital after the birth of their child and walk through the doors on their way home. We have had one dad, while sitting in the middle of our boutique floor, ask “if they could stay and order a pizza.” It is a moment like this that you know there is something special here. When mothers come back to ask questions and just share what is going on, it is clear they have created a safe place.
We encourage our employees to be a part of growing our company as well as be a part of our family, as well as our customers. It is the heartbeat of our business to be a trusted source for not only products, services, and education but most of all, loving the families and giving them what they need….. in whatever way we can.
This is what we call “doing retail the doula way.”