Monday, August 2, 2010

I'm Fancy!.... ish.... (Tea for Two)

I've been using Fairhaven fertility products for over a year now, my favorites being Pre-Seed, FertileCM and Fertiliaid.  I strongly credit Fertilaid for Men for my current pregnancy, since it was the only new thing we had done this cycle. 

One of my other favorite items, which I used regularly for about six months, is Fairhaven's FertiliTea.  It is a yummy little pepperminty tea that makes your lady bits all nice inside. 

Plus, it made me feel fancy. 

Pardon me, I must prepare my afternoon tea! 

If I knew where to buy crumpets, I would have included that too.  I'd fill up my loose leaf tea basket (highly preferable to a tea bag, trust me) and drink cup after cup from the same batch, just adding more hot water and re-dipping my tea basket.  In the hot summer months I'd make a huge glass of it, and add ice for a minty iced-tea that wouldn't make me jittery.

So when I got preggo, I was actually a little sad to be giving up my "tea regime".  Then, FertilaidAmy told me about Tea for Two, the loose-leaf tea designed to support pregnancy. 

WHEEEEE!!!!!!!  I'm fancy again!!!!

I'll admit I'm a tea addict.  So it was great to be able to switch to something equally yummy without worrying about putting caffeine or other bad stuff in my body.  Apparently it does good stuff for the baby too, but I was mostly concerned about being fancy. 

If you're preggo, seriously check out Tea for Two.  If you're trying to conceive, check out FertiliTea.  If you're nursing, check out Nursing Time Tea.  Tea for everyone!

Please Note:  This is a non-compensated review.  I received a bag of Tea for Two to try free of charge, however no other financial remuneration was provided.  The face value of the product I received is $14.95, which isn't enough to make me change my opinion on whether it was a good or not.  Not that I would do that.  Unless you have a product worth like $20,000.  Then we should talk. 

Friday, April 16, 2010

WINNER, WINNER!! Fertile Focus Microscope

Woop Woop!  It's WINNER time!!

Thank you to everyone who entered the Fertile Focus microscope giveaway!  There were a 117 entries, which rocks the free world.  Now for our winner... 

And it looks like that would be...

Congratulations babythornburgh (aka Meg!)!!  Please email me your mailing address and I'll send your new microscope out right away. 

However, I still have more awesomeness to share.  Even if you're not a winner, FertiliaidAmy still hooked me up with something a little extra special for Busted readers....

A 10% off coupon available just for Busted Plumbing readers!!!

Go to Fairhaven Health and explore everything from Fertiliaid, FertileCM (my personal favorite), PreSeed, FertiliTea (which I actually sipping right now), the super-awesome-I-have-dreams-about OveCue, and especially the Fertile Focus microscope.  Or, if you're currently pregnant, they have a great selection of prenatal items too.  And it's all 10% off. 

Just click this link, then enter the code BUSTED10 at check out.  Easy peasy. 

However, the link is only good for two weeks.... until April 29th.  So make sure you snag all your fertility (or pregnancy!) items before then. 

Thanks for entering! 

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Fertile Focus: You Don't Have To Pee On It

Wake up. Stumble into the bathroom. Eyes half closed, fumble around for your ovulation predictor sticks. Pee on the stick. Don’t angle properly and accidently splash yourself in the face. 

Wait five minutes, look at the stick. Is the line darker than yesterday? Is it as dark as the first line? Throw into trash.

Come back an hour later and fish out of trash. Maybe you didn’t look at it closely enough. Is it darker now? Well, sort of. But it also dried a lovely yellow color, so its hard to say. Take another test, just to be sure. Compare the two sticks. Take a third test. Arrange all the sticks in a row on your counter to see if there is a progression. 

Ask your husband to come in and look at this. Does this line look darker to you? You husband asks “Did you pee on all of those?” Gross out your husband completely.

Go out to store and buy another box of ovulation predictors. Repeat.

That’s pretty much the play-by-play of the first three weeks of every cycle for me (if I ovulate, I always ovulate late). Spend a fortune in pee-sticks. Use twice as many as I need in my experiments to test at different times of the day. Freak Adam out by shoving a yellow stick in his face for analysis. You know, the usual.

I’m exhausted. And possibly addicted. Mentally and financially, I needed to pull the plug.

Fortunately, Fertiliaid Amy took pity on me and sent me a Fertile Focus to try out. It’s a microscope. And no, you don’t have to pee on it.

Now I stumble into the bathroom, pull out the little lens and dab some spit on to it and wait for it to dry. Even in my most sleepy, delirious mornings I couldn’t screw it up.

Here’s the 411…

What it looks like: I was imagining some big, middle school biology class type microscope. The whole thing is actually the size of a tube of lipstick.

How it works: You open the tube, and pop out the black lens thing. You flip it over and wipe some spit on the bottom. Avoid getting bubbles on there if you can, those dry all weird and it makes it hard to read later. Also, don’t eat or drink before you spit. First morning spit it the best because it’s the grossest (and gross dries better).

The box says wait at least five minutes. I found I usually needed to wait much longer to get a good view. What I’d usually do is wipe the spit, then go on about my morning… breakfast, shower, get dressed, get ready and then right before I leave for the day I check it out. Replace the black lens thing back in the lipstick tube. Press the button on the bottom to shine a light through the glass. Twist to focus.

I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to tell when the “ferning” happened, but it turns out its pretty easy. It just looks like snowflakes… and the closer you get to ovulation, the thicker and denser the snowflakes get.

Look at it the rest of the day, or clean then retest again later in the day. Once you’re done, drop a little water on there and wipe it off. Easy clean-up to say the least.

One point to note: This month I took Clomid, and I noticed while I was taking the Clomid and for a few days after, I was getting the strong ferning pattern even though I was at the start of my cycle. I think that’s from the rush of hormones from the Clomid. It went back down to normal spit, and then started ferning again around the time I theoretically ovulated.


-No need to buy additional tests. You can use the same tube over and over again. Pay for it once and use it forever.
-No pee splash-back.
-You can get your husband in on the action. As opposed to something I peed on, Adam was ok with looking at my little microscope. And since it’s sort of science-y, I think men in general can get into it more.
-No pee drops to clean up off the floor. Well, at least not pee that came from you.
-I can verify with my own eyes what’s going on. I don’t have to rely on a little electronic device or possibly expired stick to relay the message to me. I can decide from my own observations.
-Easy to use.
-Did I mention you don’t have to pee on it?


-Can’t keep picture day-to-day to compare versus the prior day. You can write down what you see, but I didn’t. You miss that rainbow of OPKs to compare prior days.
-You have to rely on your own observations. There’s no flashing screen to tell you definitively if you’re ovulating or not.

So, my bottom line: I like it. I’ll continue to use it. It’s easy, its reliable, and its cost-effective. For under $30 (which is usually how much I spend in a month on pee-sticks), you get a dependable and simple ovulation predictor method that you can use month after month.

If you’re super chill but just curious how your body works, use this and nothing else. Bone down as soon as it starts to fern, and keep boning down until the ferning goes away (that’s easy to identify too). Or just keep boning down and make your husband happy. Whatevs.

If you’re super TTC-MustKnowExactlyWhenIOvulate, then use this with something else for the “second opinion”. I’m also using the OV-Watch this month, so it was nice to have something else to go to. And again, I appreciated being able to decide with my own eyes what was going on in my body.

I had trouble finding a picture by itself, but you can see it below here... its that little blue tube in the lower right hand corner...

Products to Help you Conceive

So, here’s the super rad part. Fertiliaid Amy gave me a second one to give to you. Here’s how you can win…

The Rules:

1. Leave a separate comment for each entry.
2. You must have a contact email. If you’ve got yourself set up to that “No Reply” email thing, then you’ve got to leave an email address in one of your comments. M’kay?


1. Visit the Fairhaven website and leave a comment here with one product that peaked your interest (1 entry, manadatory).
2. Follow Busted Plumbing on Google Friend Connect (1 entry).
3. Follow @FertiliaidAmy on Twitter (1 entry).
4. Follow @BustedKate on Twitter (1 entry).
5. Tweet this message: “Because I am awesome, I entered @BustedKate's #giveaway for a FREE Fertile Focus microscope!" (1 entry per day, up to 7 additional entries)
6. Blog about the contest (please leave a link to your post) (5 additional entries)

I'll draw a number using the Random Number Generator, sometime on Thursday evening (April 15, 2010)... so you have a full week to rack up as many entries as you can! 

Disclosure: The Fertile Focus microscope was provided to me free of charge to try out. I received no financial remuneration, and my opinion was not influenced in any way by money or any other compensation. Like anyone could influence my opinion anyways.

Thanks for entering, and good luck!!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner: Circle+Bloom Fertility Program & iPod!

Oh Bleeps, I'm so excited.  I'm all atwitter.  Who will it be?!

First, I have some great news...

Exclusive to Busted Plumbing readers, you can get a 10% discount if you order any program before February 28th!! 

So even if you don't win, you can still score a great deal on the Circle+Bloom program!  All you have to do is click Here, and then enter at checkout the code:  Busted10

Without further adieu, let's announce the winner of the Circle+Bloom fertility program, loaded on an iPod Shuffle, is...
Ok, and #48 is... (man am I glad I figured out the HTML that number's my comments!)...
Congratulations to [cre] aka Chirleen!  She blogs over at Confessions of a TTC-a-holic, so it looks like this will be put to good use.  Chirleen, please email me your mailing address and let me know if you'd like the pink or green iPod Shuffle! 

Thank you SO MUCH to everyone who entered!  I wish I had 220 of these to give away.  But you can still get the Circle+Bloom at a discounted rate (don't forget the code: Busted10), as my thank you for entering.  And since Circle+Bloom has dropped their program prices, its more affordable now than ever.  But you only have until February 28th, so don't wait!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Circle+Bloom Review & Free Giveaway (Including an IPod Shuffle!)

Ok Bleeps... let's all join hands and come together in the circle.  Focus on your inner eye, and communicate with Mother Earth.  Use Dragon's Breath... in one nostril and out the other.  Are you feeling at One with your being?  No?  Here, smoke the incense, and chant "Spermie Wormie, Spermie Wormie" while skipping in a circles around a bowl full of chicken gizzards. 

Still not working?  Have you tried doing three back flips while chugging a Maca smoothie, then dive into Downward Warthog.  When the moon is full, make love on top of a 11 Pumpkin pies.  Then wrap your abdomen in cloth soaked in snake oil.

Still not pregnant??  Well, I'm at a loss.

Look, there's a lot of "new age" business out there to help increase your fertility.  Devoid of any kind of science, these folks focus on us Infertiles who will prey upon us Infertiles who will literally try anything new if it even vaguely promises to improve our odds of conceiving.  Anyone who buys this stuff is just grasping at straws, obviously.

And I may or may not have a box full of that crap. 

Can you blame me?  I'm not saying I'm not doing all the traditional stuff as well... Clomid, ultrasounds, fertility doctor, etc.  But if keeping a fertility stone underneath my pillow improves my standing with Fate or Mother Nature or The Stork or whoever decides which people get kids and which ones don't, then I'm doing it.  I'm not even going to be embarrassed about it.  Well, maybe about the pumpkin pie one but only because it left such a bizarre stain on the carpet. 

Unfortunately, a lot of this voodoo, new age stuff gives the more scientifically-sound alternative medicine a bad name.  Acupuncture may have at one time elicited an eye roll from you, but now you're hooking up with Dr. Needles on the regular.  How does it work exactly?  Science doesn't exactly know, but it does note that it works.  Does acupuncture actually create change within our body?  Or is it psychosomatic, and our body makes changes because we expect it to. 

Either way, what does it matter?  If it works, it works. 

I've done a lot of stuff the past few years, both in traditional and alternative medicine, to improve my fertility.  In addition to acupuncture, I've done fertility yoga, fertility exercise, fertility diets, Chinese herbs, hid fertility medallions around my bedroom (they were gifts, I swear), and any number of other things.  Most had some science to back it up.  Some were nothing more than going on faith.  But EVERYTHING I've done has focused on changes to my body.  Nothing addressed changes within my mind. 

Then, a few months back I became acquainted with a program called Circle+Bloom.  Joanne, co-founder of Circle+Bloom, is on Twitter, and I liked her right away.  Mostly because she didn't try to sell me something.  She was just nice, and helpful.  She asked questions, and solicited feedback.  And I'll be honest, I'm a simple creature.  I really liked their website design.  It's full of soft pretty colors and cute little chicks.  So that's how they first caught my attention.

Then, the lovely Jennifer at Baby Making Machine announced she with pregnant on the first month of using Circle+Bloom's program (click the link to read about her experience).  Well that caught my attention.  Jennifer discussed how using the program helped her mind/body connection.  I had a "DUH" moment... why hadn't I thought about trying to improve that brain thingy too? 

I was sold.  Then, right about that time, Joanne asked me if I'd like to give the Circle+Bloom program a try.  Ummm.... hmmmm.... let me think about that... YES! 

I waited until my next cycle started, and the dove right in.  Circle+Bloom is a guided mediation program.  I know what you're thinking, please reference the voodoo listed at the top right?  Why don't I just get out my crystals?  Change my name to Moonbeam?  Trust me, I'm not the type. 

I elected to do the program right before I went to bed at night, unless I was getting acupuncture that day and then I listened to it while the needles did their work.  Each day there is a session that's about 15 or so minutes long, and it was exactly what it sounds like--guided mediation.  Targeted for where you are in your cycle.  Whether you're cleaning house during Aunt Flo, waiting for the Big O, or hoping for implantation... there's an app for that.

I'm not gonna lie, I laughed at some points.  I think it's Joanne who does the mediation's themselves, and I honestly don't know how she doesn't bust out laughing when she's instructing you to imagine you're a chicken sitting on your eggs.  She also does some reverse psychology during the "Ovulation Special" track, and I felt a little awkward thinking about a time when I DIDN'T want to get pregnant (was there ever such a time?) in a room full of other people during acupuncture (hopefully there weren't any Sookie Stackhouses around to see what I was thinking about). 

Occasional cheesy guidance aside, I dug the whole thing.  First thing I noticed was I was sleeping better.  Since my D&C last fall, I've really struggled with insomnia.  I mean, REALLY struggled with it (please see post on infomercials).  The meditation mellowed me out before bed, and I was able to fall asleep faster and not wake up in the middle of the night.  For that alone the program was worth it's weight in gold to me.

Here's the other thing that happened:

Yeah, it surprised the hell out of me too.  To a PCOS gal, it's a special day when we ovulate.  It's a legendary day when we ovulate AND you can confirm it on an OPK (ovulation predictor kit).  For whatever reason, our particular plumbing problems make it hard to detect ovulation on an OPK.  The only thing I had done differently that month was this program.  At the end of the month, I felt like I had focused my energy on fertility in a positive and constructive manner rather than in a worrisome, fretful way.  Like I had Superman laser vision, and it burned right into my ovaries!  Bend to my will, Ovaries! Bend, damn you! 

Nothing magical happened at the end of the month, I didn't get preggo.  The holidays happened, Aunt Flo came to visit ON Christmas morning (how thoughtful of her, Merry Christmas to me).  And new cycle began. 

And in my infinite flakiness, I forgot to start my Circle+Bloom program again.  Aside from that, did EVERYTHING the same... fertility drugs (Femara), acupuncture, etc.  Only this month I did NOT ovulate.  Stupid ovaries.  And now I have to take progesterone to force Aunt Flo to visit.  (Sigh)

So, that's my bottom line.  Last month I ovulated when I used Circle+Bloom, and this month I didn't use it and I didn't ovulate.  A scientific study?  Not so much.  But for me, it's enough to keep me on the program from here on out.  But there is plenty of science out there that talks about the importance of stress reduction and the mind/body connection.  What do you mean, which studies?  What do I look like, your science teacher?  But you can check them out on Circle+Bloom's site (nerd). 

Long story short, my opinion is this:  Yes, it's a little cheesy sometimes.  Yes, I felt a little touchy-feely doing guided meditation.  But I sleep better, I ovulated, and I felt all warm and fuzzy inside.  I can't scientifically prove it, but I'm pretty sure it made my little Grinch heart grow ten times in size.  I love it.  I'm a true believer. 

Of course, they could have put subliminal messages in the program to make me say I love it.  But that's for you to decide.  It would certainly explain why I cluck like a chicken every time Simon Cowell appears on TV. 

And here's the best news of all...  You can win your very own Circle+Bloom program!  And it comes pre-loaded on an IPOD SHUFFLE!!!  (You can choose a pink or green one)

I know, it's frickin' awesome.  Circle+Bloom's fertility program, and an iPod Shuffle, for free!

The value of the Circle+Bloom program is $59, and the value of the Shuffle is $60.  Total prize package value is $119!
Here's the rules:
-Be a follower of the Busted Plumbing blog (mandatory)
-Leave a comment below with something you learned by visiting Circle+Bloom's site (It's full of great info, and pretty colors, so this should be easy) (mandatory)

For extra entries (please leave separate comments for each entry):
-Become my Facebook Fan
-Become a Circle+Bloom Facebook fan
-Tweet "I just entered @BustedKate's giveaway for @circlebloom's fertility relaxation program on an iPod!"
-Follow @CircleBloom on Twitter
-Add my button to your blog!
-Post about this giveaway on your blog (3 extra entries, please leave 3 comments)
-Download Circle+Bloom's Free Trial (3 extra entries, please leave 3 comments)

Also, by entering this contest you are also consenting to me giving your email address to Circle+Bloom. 

The Contest will end on midnight on Monday, February 15th (President's Day), and I will announce the winner the next day. 

Disclosure:  The Circle+Bloom program was provided to me free of cost to try out.  I received no financial remuneration, and my opinion was not influenced in any way by money or any other compensation.  Like anyone could influence my opinion anyways.

Thanks for entering, and good luck!!