Saturday, August 21, 2010

Dear John: An Overview of Our First Year

Part II: An Overview of Our First Year

Dear John,

Yay! We made it! We survived our first year of marriage! We've accomplished so much together over this last year. We make a great team. I am so happy and proud to be your wife. Here are some of the things I am most proud of accomplishing over our first year of marriage.

Over the last year we have created a family. When we met you were a single dad raising a little boy and I was a single mom raising a little boy. Our little boys were the same age. We were each living the same life, but separately. We worked. We took care of our child. Then the day came we fell in love. And now here we are, one year after our wedding day, living the same life together. Raising our boys, together.

We have made our house a home. Six months before we said "I do" we bought this house. Over the last year we have made our house a home. We have shared together, laughed together, cried together, and prayed together in this house. We have helped our boys with their homework, hosted birthday parties, shared Thanksgiving dinner, and shared our first Christmas as a married couple in this house. Our home.

We have struggled with infertility. From the day you asked me to marry you, there was nothing I wanted more than to have a child together. We both love children and love being parents. That is a common bond that helped bring us together. After our wedding we were ready to grow our family. That didn't happen. And here we are a year later. A year filled with hope and disappointment. A year filled with Clomid and emotional turmoil and shots and a fertility doctor. As our one year anniversary approaches, we are hoping this month will be "the" month. Even if it's not, we will continue on this journey together.

Today, as our first year as husband and wife comes to an end, I love you more than ever. I'm confident that our love will grow and grow over the years. I will cherish every minute.

I love you.

Your Wife

** Stay tuned for tomorrow's post, "Dear John: Our Wedding Day". **

Friday, August 20, 2010

The Dear John Letters: Pre-Wedding Preparations

Part I: Pre-Wedding Preparations
 Dear John,

Sunday is our one year anniversary. It will be our first of many.

This time last year I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off doing last minute wedding preparations. I was packing for our honeymoon, greeting an out of town bridesmaid, and organizing all of the miscellaneous wedding supplies into boxes labeled "church" and "reception".

Last year this date, August 20, 2009, was a Thursday. We went to the Buckeye Hall of Fame Cafe for a pre-rehearsal dinner, dinner. The service was poor and you're one buddy from South Carolina (ya know, the one that wanted to have dinner at the Buckeye Hall of Fame Cafe to begin with?), he was late. Like very late. Like he did NOT show up at the dinner at all. He was too busy with his new girlfriend who just moved back to Ohio. Remember, later that evening they came to our house? He ignored me and talked to you while his girlfriend hung all over him. Good thing my friend Maren was there to keep me calm. But, really I am glad we did go to the Buckeye Hall of Fame Cafe for that pre- rehearsal dinner, dinner - because they have since closed their doors forever.

Then, tomorrow, is the anniversary of the day of pre-wedding preparations that had me in a tizzy. Do you remember how we did not get your passport until the day before we said "I do"? Do you remember we had to call our congressman in order to get it on time? I spent August 21, 2009 at the nail salon, reception venue setting up, stopping at the bank, organizing the bridal party and parent gifts for the rehearsal dinner, picking up the groom's cake, and getting dressed up for the rehearsal dinner. You held down the fort at home with the boys.

Our rehearsal and rehearsal dinner went off without a hitch. We kept it simple. Pizza, salad, wine, and beer at the Pinnacle Club - on the balcony overlooking the 9th green. We welcomed everyone and you gave a little speech thanking my mom and step dad for their contribution to our wedding. The block "O" grooms cake made of chocolate ganache. The bridal party gifts - money clips for the groomsmen and jewelry for the bridesmaids. Our friends. Our family. All together. It was a wonderful, beautiful, evening.

Those were a busy couple of days! The night before our wedding I slept at the hotel with the girls and you stayed at our house with our boys. I can remember being exhausted and excited and anxious all at the same time. For the next day I would marry the love of my life. That is a day I will never forget.

Love, Your Wife,


** Stay tuned for tomorrow's post, "Dear John:  An overview of Our First Year" which is to be followed up by Sunday's post, "Dear John: Our Wedding Day". **

Two Week Wait

Today starts my two week wait. Two more weeks before I will know if the Follistim worked. Two more weeks before I will find out whether this month is THE month. Will I have a BFP (big fat positive) or BFN (big fat negative) when I POAS (pee on a stick) in two weeks?

This TWW is going to be torture! I've endured a year full of TWW's. Actually probably about 8 or 9 of them over the last year b/c when you have PCOS your periods are not a regular 28 days. Anyways, every month it was the same... I'd get so excited. I'd start imagining that I was having pregnancy symptoms. I knew that month was THE month. Only, it wasn't.

This month it's different. This cycle we worked with a fertility doctor. This cycle we took fertility shots. This cycle IS different. This cycle I took a shot that MADE me ovulate. The rest of it - easy. The reason we have not fallen preggers is just b/c I was not ovulating. So... this month - has to be THE month.

I'm afraid to get my hopes up.

Yet I am trying to think positive. 

And it is SO easy to get your hopes up. I've started taking over the counter pre-natal vitamins again. I've been drinking a lot of water. I'm starting to limit my caffeine intake. I'm doing all the "right" things to make sure that if I did 'O' that this month will be a success.

The TWW is hard.

NYM Brand Giveaway Winner

I know for a FACT that the girl that won this giveaway is jumping up and down right now with her Sassy Self!! The winner, generated by the random number generator, is lucky #15!!! Lesa from She' Ain't Heavy, She's My Sister! Or you may know her on Twitter as @LuckyandSass. This Jersey girl is ready to flaunt her sass and tease her hair with all the hairspray!!

Thanks to my sponsor Not Your Mother's Brand! Find them on Twitter @NYMBrands

Sad you lost? @OttosMomBlogs is also hosting a Not Your Mother's Brand Giveaway that is still going on! Follow this link! Tidbits in Parenting

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Today I Had to Tell My Son There is No Tooth Fairy

This morning I traumatized my eight year old son. I need to throw some more money in his therapy fund. He will be telling this story for years to come.

Last Tuesday evening Riley lost another tooth. Wednesday morning he says, "The tooth fairy didn't come!"


"She didn't come? Did you put your tooth under your pillow?"

"No. I forgot. I left it on the kitchen counter."

Sigh of relief. "Well that's why silly! Put it under your pillow tonight and she'll come. I promise."

This morning I get up, take my shower, and go to wake up Riley. I nudge him awake and walk downstairs to turn on the coffee pot. (Coffee is VERY important in my house!) When I get back upstairs he is sitting on the bed crying.

"What's wrong honey?!" I ask.

"The Tooth Fairy HATES me!!!!!"

Shit. Shit. SHIT! 

"She took my tooth, and didn't leave me any money! She hates my teeth!"

I took a deep breath and sat down next to him on the bed. Do I tell him? Or, do I not? As I looked at my crying child I knew I had no choice. Better he hate me than think some imaginary fairy hates him.

"Riley, honey, it was mommy who forgot to leave you money."

He sniffles and stares up at me. And grunts.

"Mommies and daddies leave tooth fairy money to help little kids have courage when they lose their teeth."


"Yes. Mommy is sorry."

"Khegan was.... was... right! You LIED!"

Yes, my stepson Khegan (who's 5 weeks younger than Riley) has been saying for weeks that his mommy was the Tooth Fairy. He saw her sneak into his room and get out her wallet.

At our house we denied this rumor and cursed his mother for being such an idiot. And Riley believed us. Khegan we almost had convinced. I can only imagine the secretive talks those two boys are having right now about how I lied.

No tooth fairy.

"Riley, it's not really a lie. It's an... incentive. An incentive to help you be brave enough to pull out your teeth."

He grunts and sniffles and starts to get dressed.

I thought it was over. I had succeeded. That wasn't too bad...

A few minutes later, down in the kitchen he is still grunting. No words.

"Riley, what's wrong? Are you mad at mom?"

He bursts into tears.


"Riley, it's ok. It is really ok. Now, don't you smile at mommy. Don't you laugh...."

He stifles a grin before he starts grunting and sniffling and crying again.

"Riley, don't laugh! Don't even think about laughing at mommy! And whatever you do, don't kiss me..."


"Don't laugh because... because... Because if you do I'll have to give you $10!"

He laughed.

And kissed me.

And it only cost $10.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Twitter 101

Tweet much? If you do, then this post is for you! Whether you are new to Twitter or a veteran Tweeter, there are some common courtesies you should be aware of whenever you are interacting with folks in the Twitterverse.

Today I did my research for this blog post by asking my Tweeps about their biggest #PetPeeve when it comes to #TwitterEtiquette. Before I reveal to you the biggest Twitter faux pas that people commonly make, I will review some #TwitterBasics, #TwitterTerms, and #TwitterTools that you will find most helpful.


# = Hashtag Use this to identify and search for special topics
RT = Retweet Your Tweets repeated by others
140 = The max number of characters in a Tweet  
            (hint: use less than 140 so ppl can RT)
@ = Mention - One of your Tweeples is tweeting at you!  
           (hint: no space after @ ie. @NewBreedMama)
*italics* = Use the * symbol before and after a word for emphasis, OR
                   to symbolize action *blushing*
::Hugs:: = Expression of love and support

#TwitterTerms (and commonly used lingo)
MM = Mention Monday #MM
FF = Follow Friday #FF
Wordless Wednesday = Specific to Mommy Bloggers >> Post with Pic Only
Thx4RT! = Thank you for the retweet
WOOT! = Hooray, Yippee, Yahoo
SQUEE = How exciting or "Look at me! I'm a cheerleader!" Lol - you get the picture
LOL = Laughing out loud. If you don't know that one, we may have a wee problem... #JustSayin
LMAO = Laughing my ass off!
ROTFLMAO = Rolling on the floor laughing my ass off!
Shout Out = Acknowledging someone  (ie. Here's a shout out to @MaryBeauty for giving me the idea for this post!)


HooteSuite & TweetDeck = Apps to help you tweet more efficiently
Qwitter = Find out who "unfollowed" you
Friend or Follow = Find out if your followers follow back

Lists = Make Lists for ppl you follow the most 

Random Helpful Hint: Those links at the bottom of a tweet - they help you follow the conversation.

That's just some basic information to help you get started with Twitter. Keep in mind that when tweeting in 140 character phrases everything is in shorthand. :) And emoticons are used A LOT. =) If you don't know what something means, feel free to ask. Your tweeples will help you out! My best advice for getting more followers is to join the conversation!!

And with no further ado...

#TwitterEtiquette and #PetPeeves (Faux pas you don't want to make!)

If someone @'s you, do NOT ignore them. I mean, we all know that it can be easy to overlook a tweet here or there, but to CONSTANTLY ignore someone tweeting directly at you - SO not cool. Especially, ESPECIALLY if you tweet with them often!

If you tweet with someone regularly, follow them. Don't be a #TwitterSnob. Nuff said.

Tweet more than just links!! Ok so maybe around 30-40% of your tweets can be links to your site, other sites, you blog, etc. But if ALL you tweet is links, you'll get unfollowed quicker than you can say #FollowFriday.

No spamming! No one wants to follow a spammer.

Auto DM's from TrueTwit... Annoying a hell.

Auto DM's are ANNOYING!! Period. Especially if they are self-promoting links.

Be original! If ALL or MOST of your tweets are RTs no one will pay attention. If you continue to rephrase the same tweets over and over again, BORING!

Follow Back Y'all!! If you create a Twitter Follow Linky, then follow the people that link up, k?

Keep private information private. Common sense people! No weird sex talk, etc. That is the CORRECT use for DMs #WeirdSexTalk.

Don't be an ASSHOLE. Be polite. Be courteous. Be respectful. Once you tweet, it's out there.

Paid Tweets! Ok, I can see the temptation in this. Actually, I am guilty of Sponsored Tweeting (I even have a button on my blog *puts head down*) BUT if ALL of your tweets are SPONSORED - who is going to want to follow you? Really?

Twitter is a fun social networking tool. Just tweet with care & avoid these common faux pas to make the most out of your tweets. And don't forget to HAVE FUN!!

Would love to know your thoughts! Was this article helpful? Did I miss any of your #PetPeeves? Comment below and join the conversation. While you are here, I would love it if you'd take time to follow my blog with GFC and to Follow me on Twitter @NewBreedMama.

Winner of Nils-Online Giveaway

The winner, picked by the random number generator, was lucky #28!! That would be Aly from The Infertility Overachievers. Find her on Twitter @IFOverachievers


Also a big THANK YOU to my sponsor Nils from Nils-Online - Find him on Twitter @MrMomOnline

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


As a follow up to yesterday's post, The Monday Blues, today's post will focus on gratitude.

Yesterday we whined. Today we will be thankful.

No one can be happy all the time. We will always have our moments, or a series of moments, when life has us run down. In the midst of those moments it is easy to find ourselves feeling frustrated and being flooded with negative thoughts. It is a well known secret that our thoughts directly impact our emotions.

By changing our thinking we can change our outlook on the world, and in turn, we can change our life! 

After a rather rough start on Monday morning, I changed my thinking and over the course of the day good things began to happen. When I am in a rut, I stop and think about all of the things in my life for which I am most thankful.

Here is my list, in no particular order..

My Husband
My Children
My Mother
My Sisters
My Family
My relationship with God
My real life friends
My 'twitter friends'
A healthy family
A beautiful home
A stable job
My education

I could go on and on listing the material possessions that I am thankful for, but mostly I am thankful for the wonderful people in my life and for the things that you can't put a price tag on.

The amazing thing about gratitude is that when you are grateful for the blessings in your life, more and more blessing will be given to you. Before you can get what you most desire in life, you must be grateful for what you already have.

What are you thankful for? I invite you to comment on this post and share your thoughts.

Not Your Mothers Brand Professional Hair Products: Review and Giveaway

NYM Brand offers great hair products! A few weeks ago I entered a giveaway for the NYM Brand Hair Products on another blog. Unfortunately, I did not win. However, I was inspired to approach NYM Brand about teaming up with A New Breed of Mom for a product review and giveaway. I was thrilled when they accepted and asked me which of their (fabulous) products I would like to try.

Here are the products I tested...

All Eyes on Me Shape & Shine Hairspray
First of all, let it be known that I am a hairspray gal. I use hairspray every single day. Whether I curl my hair or use a straight iron, I always finish off my look with hairspray to keep my "do" in place. The All Eyes on Me Shape & Shine is not only good for an extra firm hold, but is also fast drying and leaves your hair looking glossy and shiny. It is infused with lemongrass & orange flower which adds to the shine, plus it smells great. This spray lasts all day! 

She's a Tease Volumizing Hairspray
This firm hold hairspray made with a humidity resistant formula helps create volume and lift. This product is infused with apple blossom and bamboo - the bamboo works to volumize and strengthen your hair. The She's a Tease Volumizing Hairspray is perfect for women who use a curling iron, have naturally thin hair, or just want to give their hair some added volume. 

Smooth Moves Frizz Control Hair Cream
Designed especially for the woman who wants to "tame that mane", this product helps to smooth out your hair, control that frizz, and reducing the amount of time it takes to style. To use, you simple apply to your wet or damp hair and then blow dry and style as you normally would. The Smooth Moves Frizz Control Cream works all day long and adds a brilliant shine. It is infused with coconut and silk extract to help strengthen and shine your hair.

My mother is a beautician. I have grown up using professional-grade hair products. I am very picky when it comes to my hair. My hair is naturally curly, but if you let it air dry it leads to a frizzy mess. The Smooth Moves Frizz Control Cream did wonders to relax my hair. I was very happy with both of the hair spray products. I will be using the She's a Tease Volumizing Hairspray when I curl my hair and the The All Eyes on Me Shape & Shine when I style with my straight iron. These products are both high-quality and affordable.

The Giveaway
Here is your chance to win a gift set including ALL 3 of the products I tested! That's right, if you win, you will receive the All Eyes on Me Shape & Shine, the She's a Tease Volumizing Hairspray, and the Smooth Moves Frizz Control Cream.

The giveaway will run from Tuesday 8/17 thru Thursday 8/19 and the winner will be announced on Friday. You must be following A New Breed of Mom with Google Friend Connect to be eligible to win. Please enter one comment on this post for EACH entry. Good Luck!

Mandatory Entry: Visit, check out the other great products by NYM Brand, and comment on this post to tell us what other NYM Brand hair products you would like to try.

Additional Entries:
Follow @NewBreedMama and @NYMBrands and Tweet this, "Enter to win a gift collection with 3 fabulous @NYMBrands hair products from @NewBreedMama" (You can tweet one entry per day)
Like Not Your Mother's Brand on Facebook

Like A New Breed of Mom on Facebook  

NYM Brand Professional Hair Products are available at college book stores, Wal-mart, and online at

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Monday Blues

It's Monday.


This weekend has gone by too quickly. As a working mom, I dread Mondays. Mondays mean the start of another long week. Five more days until the next glimpse of freedom. Five more days I will not be with my kids. Weekends go by so quickly, but sometimes the weeks just drag.

Usually, I try to stay very upbeat and positive about everything in my life, but today I'm just not feeling it.

I have the Monday blues. 

So I'm going to whine a little bit.

Monday means that I have to go back to the fertility doctor. I have to get my blood drawn, which I hate. And it's becoming a regular occurrence. I am not looking forward to it. In fact, I'm dreading it. It's bad enough I have to give myself a shot every night. Then to have to go to the doctors several times a week to get my blood drawn, get an ultrasound of my ovaries, and then get told that my levels are "off" just makes me depressed.

There I said it.

It makes me depressed.

Whine, whine, whine.

Monday also means another long week of work for my husband. His job requires a lot of hours and he doesn't get home until seven or eight o'clock (his work day starts at 7 am). I miss him. Being in charge of taking the kids to the babysitters and picking them up from the babysitters and getting dinner and making sure they get their showers kinda makes a woman feel like a single mother even though she's not. But, what's worse is that my hubby is so exhausted when he gets home and he still helps clean up dinner, set up the coffee pots for the next day, and packs his lunch. It makes me feel like a failure as a wife. I should be doing all of that stuff for him.

Instead, I blog. For me.

Then I put myself on a guilt trip.

It's hard to take care of a family and work full time, I rationalize. But really, I should just be a better wife and do more to ease his stress. That's what it's all about, right? Taking care of each other.

Monday also means that the things I did not accomplish this weekend will not get done for at least a week. Yes, we did all the necessary chores to maintain for a week - laundry, grocery shopping, tidying up. But, the vacuuming, bathrooms, dusting, and mopping will all have to wait. I didn't get enough done around the house and I didn't relax as much as I would have liked to either.

Whine, whine, whine. Waa, waa, waa.

Time to suck it up and get on with life. 

Because it's Monday.