Together, Todd and I were enough and then we had Lucas.

Our son made us a family.

We desperately wanted a sibling for him and after a three year struggle with secondary infertility, we were finally able to give him one.

Our baby girl made our family complete.

A sibling is there to share secrets and face life’s greatest moments. But why I ever thought two children born to the same parents, raised in the same way would be alike is beyond me.

My sister and I are as different as night and day but I always thought it was because of the almost 12 year age difference between us. We were practically raised as only children and didn’t became close until we were adults. I have faced the best and worst life events with her by my side.

I have known many siblings and they are different from one another too but I never really thought why.

Now that I have two children I realize how unique siblings are from one another. Lucas and Lola are their own individual people with personalities and characteristics that are continuing to develop and while they do share genetics, they are very different.

So different.

So wonderful.

Just like snowflakes.


At only 10 1/2 months and 5 1/2 years old, I can already see how different my children are from one another.



One of a kind.


And always will they be siblings.

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Tracy’s Story: Say No To NuvaRing

My sister Leah met Tracy the Fall of 2002 when they were both Freshman at the University of Arizona. They have been best friends ever since.

I have had the pleasure of spending a little time with Tracy over the years and have always enjoyed her company. She is witty and smart and has been a good friend to Leah.

Tracy was particularly instrumental to Leah’s grieving process when we lost our parents in 2007 and was there for her the night we found out they had died. Tracy was there for my sister when I could not be. I will always be grateful to her for that. 

Last summer, Tracy who lives in New York was visiting my sister in LA.

One night the three of us went to dinner and to see Beyoncé in concert. We had a great time and as always it was fun to witness the banter that only two good friends can share. That was a Friday. Two days later, at 29 years old, Tracy suffered a stroke.

Last week she shared the following on her Facebook wall and with her permission I am sharing it here:

One year ago today, 3 weeks past my 29th birthday, I had a stroke. It was caused by the birth control NuvaRing. Due to this event I lost a significant amount of my left peripheral vision. I’m so BLESSED to say it wasn’t worse – women died. I’m not celebrating this “anniversary”, rather I’m ready to share my story, so that it may help others.

Full disclosure – I entered the class action suit, along with 3,800 other women, against the makers of this product, Merck. The final payout Merck was responsible for was 6% of what a similar case paid out, we’re talking a few millions versus a few hundred billion. Basically a slap on the wrist for a company that is knowingly selling a dangerous product to millions of otherwise healthy women, like me.

So, I didn’t settle and here’s why:

If you had a life altering stroke at 29 years old during the height of a beautiful California vacation that ripped vision and sensation from the left side of your body, would you settle?

If you spent two days in the hospital and worried your entire family, friend and professional circle, would you settle?

If you had to correct your mom in a room full of doctors that glasses wouldn’t help because the injury wasn’t in your eyes, it’s in your brain, would you settle?

If over the last 7 years you told several doctors of your experiences with migraines, never to be taken seriously, would you settle?

If you still walk cautiously through every single intersection worrying that you may not see the motorist, bicyclist or Mac truck, would you settle?

If you secretly dread shopping because it will require you to perform exhaustive and annoyingly slow eye scanning, would you settle?

If you sometimes avoid large crowds because you worry you will bump into, trip or hurt yourself or others, would you settle?

If people still ask you “how’s your vision” and you have to tell them that it’s no better, would you settle?

If something that happened to you on one day of your life is now something you think about every day, would you settle?

If you knew officials claim the type of stroke you had doesn’t “support a casual link” to NuvaRing, but the FIRST THING the ER doctors asked you to do when they identified your stroke was to remove your NuvaRing, would you settle?

If all official medical reports point directly to NuvaRing, but the courts don’t care, would you settle?

If the after insurance amount in medical bills was more than the payout, would you settle?

If you knew that other women died because of NuvaRing, would you settle?

Please share/tell my story to one person, then it’ll be worth it.

For those of you who don’t know, NuvaRing is a birth control option for women. It is a small flexible contraceptive ring, about the size of a silver dollar. The NuvaRing contains the same hormones as many birth control pills. It is inserted manually into the vagina, where it is left for three weeks. There, a continuous, low dose of hormones is released. Then the ring is removed for one week. This is the week you have your period.

According to Tracy, many young women and their common stroke-like symptoms are being ignored. She was given an IV initially and sent home.

Tracy has zero regrets about not settling in the class action suit and is hoping that someday soon there will be enough studies that prove arterial strokes are directly linked to medications like NuvaRing, in the meantime regaining 100% visibility may never happen for her, but she is optimistic in new visual training programs offered by the School of Optometry at SUNY.

I wanted to share Tracy’s story because it’s important and because I have a tiny following here and thought I could help spread the word about the dangers of NuvaRing. I am currently shopping for new birth control and I know many of you may be as well or know someone who is. I’m begging you to take the time and do the research on ANY birth control you are considering. It could save your life.

For more information, here are two articles Tracy recommends, they are relevant and extensive on the subject of the NuvaRing case, Danger in the Ring and Parents of 24-year-old killed by NuvaRing reject their part of $100 million settlement.

Say No To NuvaRing!!

Please share Tracy’s story!!

Please share this post and if you have any follow up questions for Tracy, leave them in the comments below.

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Sip & See: Update

It was a celebration three and a half years in the making.

I bought new dresses for both of us.

There were beautiful platters of croissant sandwiches, quiche, colorful macaroons, mini cupcakes and delicious salads.

Gorgeous flowers and my favorite people filled the room.

And the champagne was free flowing!

The gifts were generous and heartfelt, especially a Dave Matthews Band-themed diaper cake, which included diapers, of course, a Rockabye Baby! Lullaby Renditions of Dave Matthews Band CD, framed lyric, monkey onesie, Anti Monkey Butt diaper cream and monkey rattles (see photo below).

It was a day to celebrate; a Sip & See for Lola hosted and attended by my best friends and family.

Back in December, I wrote a post sponsored by Minted about how we had opted for a Sip & See after Lola’s arrival instead of a baby shower/sprinkle beforehand.

As promised, here’s the invitation:


Click on image for more details and ordering information.

Todd took the children home after a while and the game Cards Against Humanity came out. There was laughter and a few tears as I fumbled through a toast trying to express how much the day meant to me, but mostly there was love.

sipandsee2It was lovely afternoon.

Thank you, again friends and especially Leah, for getting me home safely.

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On Turning 30

My sister, Leah turned 30 in March (I’ve been working on this post since before then!) and that’s huge! I am happy for her and the new decade that lies ahead. Everything seems to be going really well in her life right now.

There are almost 12 years between me and my sister and it has been both a delightful and sometimes agonizing process to watch her grow into the woman she is today.

Our parents would be very proud of her and how strong our bond is as sisters.

As I wrote in Leah’s birthday card, I remember turning 30 and what a strange, sad and yet magical year it was, not to mention the nine that followed.

In some ways it seems eons ago and in others as though it were just yesterday.

I celebrated my 30th birthday with family and what I thought at the time were close friends surrounding a tepan table. I don’t remember any gifts I received that night but I distinctively remember feeling equal parts anxious and excited about the next 10 years of my life.

I talk to no one who was at that dinner today except my sister. My (at the time soon to be ex-) husband and in-laws were there and several people that are now only “Facebook friends”. The two most important guests were my parents and they died five years later during the not so magical part of my 30’s.

I was 30 when my first husband and I parted ways, I started wearing clothes that fit me because I was finally comfortable with my body, I had a job I adored at an advertising agency and I met and made friends with women that I couldn’t have imagined would become so important to me in the next decade and the one after that. I lived alone for the first (and only time) in my life and loved every minute of it!

Before I turned 31 I would meet my now husband and experience love like I had never known, but before that I would curse the time I wasted with my ex because I thought he was “The One” and my only shot at having a family. Clearly I was delusional. I also had other demons to fight and I struggled to find solid ground in the workplace and my bank account. 30 (and beyond) is when it all came together for me, I was no longer a child and came to  understand that life is not always fair and that’s okay. Fair doesn’t leave any room for grace or mercy.

Happy Birthday, again, my sweet Leah. I hope your decade is off to a exceptional start and only gets better.


Leah & I celebrating her 30th birthday at Little Sister, Manhattan Beach – March, 2014

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Live & In Person

Several times I have shared how much I love music, from my current workout playlist, to favorite songs and my adoration of Dave Matthews.

I have a short list of songs that I *must* hear performed live before I die because they are some of my all time favorites, meaningful to me and have helped me find my voice when my own words have failed me or I simply admire the artist so much that I have to see them in concert. In alphabetical order, they are:

  • #41 by The Dave Matthews Band*
  • A Thousand Years by Christina Perri*
  • Anna Begins by The Counting Crows*
  • Clarity by John Mayer*
  • Good Enough by Sarah McLachlan
  • Nick of Time by Bonnie Raitt*
  • Piano Man by Billy Joel*
  • Pictures of You by The Cure
  • Second Hand News by Fleetwood Mac*
  • Someone Like You by Van Morrison

I’ve been lucky enough to see the starred ones, some more than once!

Last night I saw Christina Perri at a small radio marketing event that my sister’s company was involved in at the Hard Rock Cafe in Hollywood. Perri sang only three songs, two from her new album, released this week and opened with “A Thousand Years”.

I cried through the entire song. I didn’t sing along even though I know every word, I just cried.

I loved the Twilight series, read the books and was first in line to see the movies (all five), but I don’t remember hearing Perri’s song during the credits of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn—Part 1. Apparently after fans heard it on the movie’s soundtrack, they adopted it as “Bella and Edward’s song”. It’s significance to me isn’t Twihard related; for me it served as an anthem during my struggles with infertility, a love song to a child I longed to meet someday.

I’m still recovering/processing/coming up for air from that chapter of my life and it’s proving to be harder than I thought. Infertility is a crazy roller coaster ride of ebbs and flows, hope and disappointment and there were some very dark days when I didn’t think I could handle it anymore and those were the days I turned to my infertility playlist for inspiration, a good cry and above all comfort. “A Thousand Years” is on that playlist and will always be a favorite and gentle reminder of a very difficult period of my life.

Last night was only the second time I have heard the song since my miracle, Lola was born and I was completely overcome with emotion. It’s a beautiful and moving song.

I have died everyday waiting for you
Darling don’t be afraid I have loved you
For a thousand years
I love you for a thousand more

And all along I believed I would find you
Time has brought your heart to me
I have loved you for a thousand years
I’ll love you for a thousand more

Not only did I get the chance to hear Christina Perri live, I also met her after her set and told her how much her song means to me. She was gracious and kind and asked how everything turned out and thanked me for sharing my story.

It was a very special experience. Thank you, again, Leah! You better believe I rushed home to snuggle our little Lola.

PicMonkey Collage1

Meeting Christina Perri – Hard Rock Cafe, April 2, 2014

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