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Cute Accessories + Support Adoption

Disclosure: I received complementary headbands to facilitate my review. All opinions are my own.
I have a love/hate relationship with my hair.

On the other hand, I have a love/love relationship with adoption stories.

So just imagine my delight when I was contacted by Megan at Seven Days Shop about reviewing her lovely adjustable headbands.

Not only does she create beautiful headbands, Megan donates a portion of her proceeds to help fund adoptions. Each month she chooses a family pursuing adoption and features them on her blog, and donates 20% of all sales, as well as 40% of the featured headband to the family’s adoption fund.

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New Year, New Home :)

If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen my recent announcement that we’re doing a little rebranding around here. Our new home is StarfishConfidential.com. I don’t have much happening over there yet, but I’m working on it.

Hopefully, this transition will be pretty seamless for you, my dear readers, and I hope you’ll all come along for the ride.

Since Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram allow me to change the names and links of my existing accounts, I don’t think you need to do anything with those, except possibly update your bookmarks, and watch for Starfish Confidential in your feeds, instead of Foster Ducklings.

If you follow FosterDucklings on Bloglovin’, StarfishConfidential is here. If you follow ME on Bloglovin’, my username has changed to ISeeStarfish.
 
I *think* I can transfer email subscriptions over to the new blog without you having to do anything, but I haven’t had a chance to test that. 🙂

So.. that’s the big update! Let me know in the comments if you have any questions. 🙂

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Hint:
It has recently come to my attention that not all of my readers can easily tell when I’m being sarcastic. That is truly unfortunate, so finding a solution was imperative. ^Obviously, the easiest answer is to assume that if something can be read with sarcasm, it should be;^; but that’s not really workable, I guess. After reviewing several options for a “sarcasm font”, I’ve come up up with my own system. Whenever you see italics inside carrots (^snark^), that is my “sarcasm font”.

How to Join a Link Up

If you’re new to blogging, joining a link up may seem a little intimidating. It’s actually very simple and here’s an easy step-by-step guide to joining the #AdoptionTalk Link Up!

Write a Blog Post

Write a post just as you normally would. If the link up has a topic (click here for the #AdoptionTalk schedule) then write about the topic question. If there is no topic, write about anything you like. 

Add the Button to Your Post

Though not required, the button lets your readers know about the link up, which helps to grow the link up. To add it, just paste this HTML into the TEXT (not visual) section of your post. If you are one of the kind souls who does add the button, I thank you in advance.

Starfish Confidential #AdoptionTalk

Publish Your Post

Just hit that publish button as you normally would. Now your post is live on your own blog, right?

Copy Your URL

The easiest way to do this is to open your post up in a page and just hit copy (CTRL C or Apple C) up at the top where the URL is. You want to make sure you copy the posts URL and not the blogs URL.

Head Over to the Blog “Hosting” the Link Up


Starfish Confidential | No Bohns About It | Joyful Journey
Ripped Jeans & Bifocals | Our Journey to You

Add Your Link

Scroll down to the link up section. You will likely see a few thumbnails of posts from others who have already added their links. Hit the blue “Add Your Link” button:

Step-by-Steps instructions to join a Link Up
You should be transferred to a new page that looks like this:

Paste the URL you previously copied into the link section.

Inlinkz should then be able to read what your post is titled. You can edit this if you want it to say something different.

If Inlinkz gives you an error message, make sure you properly pasted the posts URL.

Inlinkz should also automatically select a picture if you have one in your post. If you have multiple images, you can select which one you want in the “Image Source” section. If you don’t have one, it is best to hit “Upload” and pick some kind of image so that it isn’t blank. Blog logos work great.

Hit the blue “Done” button and that’s it! Your link is added. Now you can head back to the link up and read some great stuff linked by other bloggers!

A few things to consider:

1) Link up early. Most people mingle right after they post. So if you want your post read, try to add it earlier rather than later. The #AdoptionTalk Link Up goes live at 6am EST on the 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month.
2) Try to read and comment on at least one other post. The point of a link up is to mingle and meet other bloggers. PLUS, if you leave comments for others, they are more likely to comment on yours.
3) Be respectful of others. Adoption can be a sensitive subject, and opinions may differ from your own. Please be respectful to everyone.
4) Everyone is welcome. Adoptees, adoptive parents, birth parents, experts, foster care givers, those currently in the process. Anyone with a connection is welcome.
6) Follow Your Hosts.

Jamie @ Starfish Confidential | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest
Erin
@ No Bohns About It | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest
Jenni @ Joyful Journey Mom | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest
Jill @ Ripped Jeans & Bifocals | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest
Madeleine @ Our Journey to You Adoption Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

Great American Smokeout – Quit Together. Win Together

This post was sponsored the American Cancer Society. All storytelling and opinions are my own.
I started smoking when I was 12. Yeah – that’s not a typo. All the cool kids were doing it, so… I now wonder if my having been adopted and exaggerated need to fit in may have contributed to that first puff. Great! That just occurred to me – one more thing to worry when the twins are older…
But I did one of the best things I ever could have done for them way before I ever met them – 2 years before they were even born. I quit smoking. And when I did, I got my life back. And I eliminated one of the biggest risk factors that they will start smoking as teenagers – having a parent who smokes.

July 2010 was actually the second time I really quit smoking. Like any smoker, I had tried to quit so many times. Unlike most smokers, I feel like I successfully quit twice. I know what you’re thinking, how successful could the first quit have been if I started again. Well, let me ‘splain it to you….
I quit smoking in August 2003. We were going to start our family soon, and I wanted to quit smoking well before we starting “trying”.
I actually tricked myself into quitting, if you can believe that.
I had set the day we were moving into our new apartment as my quit date – circled it on my calendar, the whole deal…. About 10 days before my quit date I worked from home all day. Around 6pm it dawned on my that I hadn’t smoked all day. And I wondered if I could go the whole day without smoking. I did, so I decided to see if I could go the next day without smoking. I did. Mind you, I hadn’t quit smoking yet, my quit date was set and I wasn’t there yet. I was just seeing if I could not smoke for a couple of days.
After 3-4 days of not smoking, I told SuperDad that I hadn’t had a cigarette in several days. I cut him off when he started to congratulate me – I hadn’t quit yet, I just hadn’t smoked in a few days…
By the time I got to my quit date, I hadn’t smoked in 10 days, so it was really no big deal at that point. Fast forward to 2006 when I finally accepted that ever being a mom just wasn’t in the cards for me (at least I thought so at the time). As some kind of stupid, childish, short-sighted “screw you” to infertility, I made a conscious decision to start smoking again. Now, how freaking moronic is that??
As I said, I quit again in July 2010, actually before we had even decided to get re-licensed for foster care. I was sick of sounding like Bea Arthur hacking up a hairball every morning. I couldn’t stand the smell of my own clothes. And burning up that much money was killing me – literally AND figuratively.
Ever since I first laid eyes on Lady Bug, every time I’ve thought about lighting up again, I just look at the kids and think about all they stand to lose if I started again – a mommy that is able to run around with them and not get winded just looking at a bicycle, a mommy that is present and will be present for a very long time, no exposure to second-hand smoke… I could go on, but I think you get the point.
If I can quit twice, you can do it once, right? Join the Great American Smokeout (800-227-2345) on Thursday, November 20th and win YOUR life back. November 20 marks the American Cancer Society’s 38th year of the Great American Smokeout (GASO), an initiative to encourage smokers to commit to quit or make a plan to quit on that day. By quitting, even for one day, smokers will take a critical step to a healthier life that can reduce the risk of cancer.
It’s a cheesy cliche, but I promise your family will thank you and you’ll be SO glad you did it. Make sure you check out the Quit for Life Facebook page and the American Cancer Society’s Guide to Quitting Smoking and make a commitment to “Quit Together. Win Together”

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Hint:
It has recently come to my attention that not all of my readers can easily tell when I’m being sarcastic. That is truly unfortunate, so finding a solution was imperative. ^Obviously, the easiest answer is to assume that if something can be read with sarcasm, it should be;^; but that’s not really workable, I guess. After reviewing several options for a “sarcasm font”, I’ve come up up with my own system. Whenever you see italics inside carrots (^snark^), that is my “sarcasm font”.

If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers

LifebankUSA Peace of Mind Graco 4ever™ 4-in-1 Car Seat giveaway

SPONSORED POST: This post is paid for by the LifeBankUSA.
Before I realized that my family wouldn’t include biological children, I did a lot of research. A LOT. While we were trying to get pregnant, SuperDad and I discussed and agreed on many of the decisions that expectant parents face. We decided that we wouldn’t circumcise or pierce baby’s ears. We would breastfeed and rear-face for as long as possible. And we would bank our baby’s cord blood.


As a parent, I’m sure you’ve heard that “cord blood”, the blood found in a baby’s umbilical cord is rich with stem cells – cells with the ability to transform into almost any cell found in the human body.Did you realize that the stems cells found in cord blood have been used to treat over 30,000 patients worldwide? Or that it’s been shown that using a higher number of stem cells in a transplant leads to better engraftment and survival? Did you know that significantly MORE of your baby’s stem cells can be preserved by adding placenta blood banking to the cord blood collection?

Banking the most stem cells can be critical and this can only be accomplished through banking both cord and placenta blood. Numerous studies published in top medical journals have shown that transplanting more stem cells significantly increases success and transplant survival rates. In fact, customers who bank placenta blood in addition to cord blood with LifebankUSA preserve 60%-70% more CD34+ stem cells – the cells that are the most important for rebuilding diseased blood with healthy blood.

Only LifebankUSA has the proprietary technology to offer placenta blood banking with cord blood banking. We are also the only company in the world to release placenta stem cell units for transplant.

Now through December 21, 2014, you can enter the LifebankUSA Peace of Mind giveaway on Facebook for a chance to win one of THREE Graco 4ever™ 4-in-1 Car Seats!


“LifebankUSA is a pioneer in placenta-stem cell technology. Our stem cell banking program meets and exceeds the highest standards in the industry-and we are the only company that can provide access to technology that allows you to boost the number of cells you can recover after birth.”

– Robert Hariri, MD, PhD
CEO and Founder of LifebankUSA

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Hint:
It has recently come to my attention that not all of my readers can easily tell when I’m being sarcastic. That is truly unfortunate, so finding a solution was imperative. ^Obviously, the easiest answer is to assume that if something can be read with sarcasm, it should be;^; but that’s not really workable, I guess. After reviewing several options for a “sarcasm font”, I’ve come up up with my own system. Whenever you see italics inside carrots (^snark^), that is my “sarcasm font”.

If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers