Welcome to the Circle+Bloom Blog

Simply page down for our chronological blog postings, or click on the categories to read what we have to say:

Camille Preston is an expert psychologist, speaker, and consultant for businesses and individuals on ways to live a happier, more productive life.

Her belief in embracing your full potential through self-awareness and tapping into innate emotional intelligence was put to the test when infertility took her on a physical and mental rollercoaster.

Camille delivered a heartfelt, witty, and perceptive TED Talk on her infertility journey this past summer.

She touches on the challenges inherent in trying to conceive and offers some incredibly poignant insights for confronting those challenges.

At the most basic level, Camille simply does a great job of explaining the infertility journey and specifically IVF.

During various points in her talk, she describes how incredibly lonely the infertility journey can be and how difficult it is to convey the confusing thoughts and complex feelings that are a part of process to others.

No matter how well intentioned, in many cases friends and family simply don’t get it. If this is the case for you and you’re simply too drained to try and explain yourself, ask your loved-ones to watch Camille’s talk.

She provides all of the information – technical and personal – in a warm and approachable way. Let her explain so you don’t have to.

Beyond Camille’s clarification of IVF treatment and other aspects of infertility, she delves deep into the emotional chaos that ensues when a person is pushed “beyond terror’s edge.”

“Terror’s edge,” as Camille describes, is the place far beyond the reaches of your comfort zone, where you succumb to your greatest fears. Camille recounts her own experience within this space – of relinquishing control and willingly entering an emotional free-fall.

Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 1.32.32 PM

As scary as it sounds, Camille points out that amazing things can happen when you fully give into your fears and confront what you feel without judgment or boundaries.

She reminds us that surrendering control and letting yourself go over terror’s edge is “not about giving up on what you want. It’s about going after that dream in a new way, with a new type of agility and persistence – being open to possibilities and new ways of how you could achieve (your goal).”

By approaching our fears in this extraordinarily vulnerable way, we open ourselves up to a world of new possibilities – a depth of yearning, sorrow, flexibility, sadness, and joy that we may never have known existed.

Camille stepped into the unknown and truly allowed herself to feel – everything. She developed a fuller sense of self and after a trying pregnancy, delivered a healthy happy baby boy.

Camille’s dream of being mom came true. Although this dream may not come true for everyone, remember that the infertility journey has brought us all to “terror’s edge.” We are not alone in our fears, and we are not alone in our joys.

I encourage you to watch the full talk and hope that you find strength in Camille’s bravery and commitment to her dream.

{ 0 comments }

Guest Blog by Sarah Clark, health coach and author of the book Fabulously Fertile – Supercharge your Fertility Naturally.

Did you know that what you eat directly impacts your fertility? If you have PCOS it is important to minimize your sugar and refined carbohydrates (such as those yummy cookies, cakes and holiday goodies). Did you know that if you have endometriosis that sugar and dairy could worsen your symptoms? What about low ovarian reserve? Did you know that inflammatory foods such as gluten, dairy and sugar might contribute to this condition? What about unexplained infertility? This can be a baffling diagnosis, with no clear path of where to start. The first place to look is what you are placing on your fork every day. Does this sound too simplistic? Or maybe it sounds way too hard?

Here are some tips to survive the holidays and keep your fertility on track:

Plan Ahead

  • You already know this, but it’s always better to eat some food at home first, so you don’t arrive ravenous. You don’t want to start noshing on the first delectable treat you find, only to find your willpower gone before you started.
  • You can also call the host and offer to bring a dish that you can eat. This takes the pressure off the host and you don’t have to worry about finding a healthy option.

Liquids

  • We all know it, when trying to conceive, it’s best to minimize your alcohol. If you absolutely must indulge, try adding sparkling water to your drink or drink only half the amount.
  • Enjoy a glass of sparking water with lemon. If you need a sweet treat, pop in a few drops of stevia and some frozen berries.

Soup/Salad

  • It’s always better to start your meal with a salad. Instead of cutting out your favorite foods for good, crowd out the less healthy stuff with more greens. When you are stuffed with healthy veggies, it’s hard to binge on the dessert table!
  • Watch out for the salad dressing as it can be loaded with sugar. If you can, opt to bring your own oil and vinegar dressing. It is totally worth it!
  • Soups are filling and a great start to any meal, but can be loaded with cream. Opt instead for a broth based soup.

Main Meal

  • According to the Harvard Nurses Health Study (Harvard University conducted an 8 years study of more than 18,000 nurses) when you get more of your protein from plants and less from animals you improve your chances of getting pregnant.
  • Try the vegetarian option, but make sure it is not loaded with cheese, as dairy can be inflammatory for your body. If you want the animal protein go for the fish, lean turkey or chicken.
  • Load up half your plate with veggies, one quarter of your plate with starches (always whole grains) and the remainder with lean protein.

Dessert

  • Is dessert your vice? Does your meal not feel complete unless you have a slice of cake or something sweet? If this sounds familiar, its time to bring awareness to your habits around dessert and sweet treats.
  • Make sure you are consuming enough protein. This will help with cravings for the sugary stuff.
  • Pile your plate with fruit. Opt for the low glycemic index kind, such as berries, apples or pears. Tropical fruits such as melon and pineapple are too sweet and can spike your blood sugar.
  • Offer to bring a dessert that is sweetened with honey, maple syrup or stevia. Stevia is 300 times sweeter than sugar and will not spike blood sugar. This is important if you have PCOS.
  • Skip the dessert tray. Maybe you are not even hungry. You could be lonely or bored. Have a great conversation with someone you haven’t spoken with all year. Connection has the power to transform your mood!

If some of this seems way too extreme for you, start with small steps. Don’t beat yourself up. If you slip up, don’t give up! Be kind to yourself. Infertility can be overwhelming enough. Remember though, this is one area, where you have control. As you begin fueling your body with healthy nutritious food, it lifts your energy and your mood. Don’t underestimate the small steps you take each day with your diet and the impact it has on your fertility.

Sarah-photoWhen Sarah Clark was 28 years old, she received a diagnosis of premature ovarian failure. She accepted the diagnosis and had both her children through in vitro fertilization. Years later she realized the root cause of her infertility was a food intolerance. As a graduate from McMaster University, a certified life coach with accreditation from the International Coaches Federation and a health coach with training from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, she is deeply passionate about helping couples supercharge their fertility naturally. She is the author of the book Fabulously Fertile – Supercharge your Fertility Naturally. She offers the Fabulously Fertile 4-week meal plan to boost your fertility and Fabulously Fertile 3 month coaching program to help prepare your body for conception by learning which foods will boost your fertility and which foods may harm your fertility. When she is not testing gluten-free and dairy-free recipes in her kitchen, she loves spending time with her husband and two children. www.fabfertile.com

{ 0 comments }

The holidays are a festive time of year, full of hustle and bustle, family events, good food and good friends.

It can be a time of great joy, but for those struggling with infertility the constant stream of messages and images depicting the picture-perfect holiday can be a not so subtle reminder of what we want, but don’t have.

Many people get the holiday blues, but there are some truly effective ways to cope and to help you enjoy this special time of year.

Being prepared for what lies ahead is incredibly important and there are a few wonderful strategies for ensuring that your holiday season is a time filled with love, kindness, and joy ——

    1. Surround yourself with good people who support you and are sensitive to what you are going through.

    Do things that you enjoy with people that make you feel loved.

    Don’t feel guilty about saying no to holiday gatherings or events that you know will make you feel uncomfortable or sad and instead focus your energy on the people and activities that encourage your happiness and wellness.

    2. Find joy in doing kind and generous things for others.

    Doing something nice for someone else is a surefire way to take your mind off of your holiday blues and to show the people around you that you appreciate the extra support they have given you along your journey.

    3. Ask for help when you need it.

    The holidays can be overwhelming on their own, but when you add the emotional strain of infertility it’s easy to become completely consumed in feelings of anxiety and helplessness.

    Seeing a professional counselor and addressing your feelings in a safe and supportive space can truly help to alleviate some of this strain and help you to refocus your energy on the people and traditions that bring you joy.

    4. Stick to healthy habits.

    Between shopping for the perfect gift, attending a slew of holiday gatherings, and managing family commitments, it’s easy to let healthy routines slip.

    Lack of time and energy make it difficult to care for ourselves in the ways that we know we should. Don’t beat yourself up for breaking your healthy habits for a few holiday indulgences, but be sure to mitigate splurges with more moderate choices, too.

    5. Create new traditions.

    This advice is often given to families who have recently lost a loved one, and when you are dealing with infertility or miscarriage, it’s also very important not to get trapped in holiday routines that are simply too painful during such a difficult time in life.

    Traditions that used to bring joy can feel empty and meaningless. If you’re struggling with these emotions, make it a priority to establish new traditions and give yourself the permission to break with holiday routines that you don’t find fulfilling.

    6. Let yourself feel…All of it.

    Facing your fears and anxieties head on and with an open and non-judgmental mindset is crucial to overcoming those fears and moving forward.

    The frustration and stress associated with infertility can be even more acute during a time of year so centered on families, and particularly children. If you feel yourself becoming increasingly depressed or resentful, take a step back and ask yourself “What am I feeling?” and “Why am I feeling this way?”

    Acknowledge and give credit to the answers to those questions– your feelings are valid and important, and by acknowledging and respecting them you can grow from painful and scary experiences in a way that brings you closer to inner peace.

    7. Know that you are not alone.

    The holidays are a difficult time for a lot of people. It feels very isolating when everyone around you seems to be having a wonderful time and you’re doing all you can just to keep it together.

    Just know that things are not always as lovely as they seem, and that the holidays are tough for a lot of people for a number of different reasons. There is a silver lining to this in that it provides an opportunity to reach out to others who may be struggling and to support one another.

    We encourage you to join our Circle + Bloom PRIVATE Infertility Support Circle Group on Facebook, and for you to know that you will always find support from us and the amazing community that has grown from this group. To join the group, simply email amy@circlebloom.com and ask to be added.

{ 0 comments }

There comes a point, usually around December 15th or so that I finally start getting into the holiday spirit. And then it hits me like a warm blanket. That cozy feeling that everything seems right in the world.

I remember living in New York City and getting this feeling. There is nothing like walking around the streets of New York with the hustle and bustle of city life, with the extra excitement of the season making everything sparkle a bit more than usual. A beautiful thing.

But until then? Not so much.

Before December 15th, there is just a lot more stress than usual. More demands on your time, more to-dos on your list, more things to remember. And don’t forget about the additional financial commitments and decisions going on as well.

And on top of all of this? The stress and struggle of infertility… and what that means for you. In fact, last year we wrote The Tiny Guide to Holiday Sanity to provide you with one more tool in your toolbox.

So, we thought we would extend an early gift to you… A special holiday discount of not 10%, not 20% – but a whopping 25% that we hope helps you make the decision to download and get started with on your new journey of taking greater control over your fertility…and more importantly…your state of mind!

Because there is no better investment – or gift that we can make but to ourselves!

Hurry as the coupon will expire on December 15th!

cb_holiday

With love + gratitude –
signatureweb



{ 0 comments }

Guest Blog by Katie Ryan, a Fertility Coach, guiding couples through pregnancy preparation and fertility solutions.

They say becoming pregnant is the ultimate act of letting go. But what if you’re not good at letting go? What if you prefer to be in control?

I see so many clients who are super-organized about having a baby. They’ve researched it out the wazoo and whatever is worth doing, they’ve done it. They’re on top of the vitamins (practitioner prescribed of course), they take their temperature every morning and know when they ovulate, they schedule sex in their calendars and keep their partner on track.

They eat well, exercise and do all the right things. They’re in control of every variable that can be controlled to help bring on that big fat positive.

But it comes at a price.

When we think we’re in control we can actually be getting in our own way. The illusion of control makes us think we’re being useful but many of my clients use it to distract themselves from the real reason they haven’t conceived yet.

iStock_000000214286XSmallKeeping busy with all the doing means no time for feeling all those emotions under the surface. Those emotions are the reason your baby hasn’t come through, not because you forgot your multivitamin yesterday or accidentally drank real coffee instead of decaf.

The real skill comes not in being organized and in control, but in having the courage to look into your heart and face your fears, then feel your way through your emotions to the other side.

Imagine yourself behind the wheel of a car. You have somewhere important to be but looking ahead, all you can see is a line of traffic. Looking in your rear vision mirror you see more of the same. You’re almost stationery, in danger of being overtaken by the proverbial tortoise.

Imagine yourself gripping the steering wheel and feel the tension in your hands and arms, trying to move your car forward with the power of your mind. Feel your posture, upright with impatience.Your breathing is shallow and your chest feels tight. All you can think is “what the heck is the delay? Why me? Why now? Can we please just get on with it?” Aargh the frustration!

If you had to describe how you feel in that car in one word, would it be stressed? You might have planned your route and done all the right things to keep your car clean and well-maintained but that hasn’t helped you avoid this traffic jam.

What if you took your hands off the wheel for a moment and let them fall into your lap. Take your next breath in deeper than the last. Let your shoulders drop away from your ears.

Could you be here for a reason? What if you’re not quite ready to arrive at your destination, or what if the delay allows time for something undesirable to be moved out of your path? Be open to knowing why things are taking so long.

Being in control takes a heck of a lot of brainpower, energy and resources. The constant planning, what if-ing and organizing is exhausting and stressful, and of course stress is the number one enemy of conception.

Stress comes from being in your head but making a baby comes from being in your body, trusting your intuitive gut instincts and feeling complete faith in yourself deep in your heart.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s still up to you to prepare yourself physically by eating well, doing some exercise and so on, but let that preparation come from a place of calm assuredness rather than frantic worry. Let your heart and intuition give you the guidance that your head can then put into practice.

Prepare then let go. Take your hands off the wheel and let the universe take control.

Screen-Shot-2014-11-13-at-7.48.41-PMKatie Ryan is a Fertility Coach, guiding couples through pregnancy preparation and fertility solutions. She believes in a world where babies choose their parents, your body is your best friend, and intuition is golden. When she’s not bringing parents and babies together, you can find her tending to kale in her backyard, meditating with a cat on her lap, or making healthier versions of her favorite desserts.
www.beforethebedroom.com


{ 0 comments }

NOT EASILY DISPELLED

November 5, 2014

in From Joanne

Last month, I wrote a blog post on journaling after receiving some pointed questions about my journaling process from a member of our Circle+Bloom community.

Journaling, writing, and self expression have been on my mind ever since, and I thought it would be a great time to share a personal experience that shows exactly how powerful these practices can be and the broader themes that they bring to light.

A few months ago my sister started writing a blog when she made a huge decision to quit her job after 30 years.

It’s been a great way for me to relive some family nostalgia through her stories and pictures, but beyond that I couldn’t help but notice a couple of things about it that highlight some great qualities we can all strive for.

First, the courage to try something new. It doesn’t matter if it’s only your family, a group of friends, the whole Internet, or just yourself as a witness.

Try something new and different if you feel like it, even if you’re nervous about what might happen or what others might think. She even tags certain posts with “something new” to highlight the way she is challenging herself.

If you put yourself out there you might just finding yourself having a lot of fun doing something you never would have imagined yourself doing!

Screen Shot 2014-11-05 at 6.19.35 PMSecond, forcing yourself out of your comfort zone. I love this post where she states openly that blogging was outside her comfort zone when she first started, and it still is.

But taking on something outside of your comfort zone let’s you overcome some of the fears that may have been holding you back, and that’s a pretty great accomplishment. Finally, the positive impact writing can have. My sister called it ‘having a conversation with yourself.”

When you sit down to write it allows you to express yourself in a way that’s different from how you might communicate on a day-to-day basis.

Writing can help you work through tough emotions, express something that you wouldn’t talk about normally, or simply to share some joy and laughter with others.

I urge you to experience these benefits for yourself! Whether sitting down with a new journal or creating a personal blog, take the first step in reaping the rewards of writing for YOU today.

With love and gratitude,
signatureweb



{ 0 comments }

Guest Blog by Vickie Barnes, co-founder of BabyHopes.com.

The journey to parenthood encompasses the full spectrum of emotions. At the start, everything is exciting and hopeful. You are full of dreams of how your future is going to bloom and how you will soon have a brand new baby in your arms. As the journey unfolds, this hopefulness can slowly diminish and be replaced with sadness and frustration if the positive pregnancy test remains elusive. This is what inspired Vickie Barnes to found BabyHopes.com.

About Vickie Barnes and BabyHopes:

Babyhopes.com was a natural progression from a labor of love, literally. In 1996, I moved to England, from New Jersey, to be with my soon-to-be husband, Steve. While living there, we had our daughter, Jennifer. Her labor was amazing and I started a website called The Labor of Love to tell everyone about our home water birth. That website blossomed into a thriving supportive community of people, who were trying to get pregnant or were parents of young children. It became apparent that many people were spending a fortune on ovulation and pregnancy tests month after month. We knew there had to be a more cost-effective alternative. When BabyHopes opened in 2001, we sold low cost, reliable pregnancy tests and ovulation tests. As the years passed, we grew and changed. On the personal front, we moved back to the United States and added two wonderful sons to our family. On the business front, Babyhopes.com continued to grow and change too, still selling low cost tests, but now also selling many different herbal products that will help you optimize your chances of getting pregnant naturally.

The BabyHopes Philosophy

As online shoppers ourselves, we greatly value good customer service. Sometimes, it is hard to come by in the impersonal world of ecommerce. We like being able to help our customers find the right product for their needs. One husband and wife team called our office many times, over a two week period, asking for clarification about what products would be the most helpful for the wife. They shared their struggle with us, in detail, and, sadly, the fertility doctors had given them no hope of conceiving on their own. They refused to accept that prognosis and came to us, looking for hope and advice. We were able to suggest some natural supplements that would be helpful. The best part of this journey was when they called back, about 2 months later, to thank us for our help because they were able to get pregnant on their own! Businesses typically do not want their customers to go away, but in our case, we would much rather you achieve your dreams then come back month after disheartening month. Our hope is that won’t see you again, until you start trying for baby number two!

Products To Help You Achieve Your Dream

When BabyHopes was first “born”, we were really focusing on providing the high quality, low cost tests. The amazing ladies, on our message board, were spending a fortune on buying ovulation and pregnancy tests at the drug store, month after month. Our focus expanded, over time, to include herbal supplements that helped to increase overall reproductive health. It was at this point that we felt that we were able to really offer value to the couples trying to get pregnant. I have always been a fan of natural approaches to achieving health. Being able to offer this natural option, to the trying to conceive community, fit right in with my life philosophy. Sometimes your reproductive system just needs a bit of a tune up to optimize the hormones that lead to a successful pregnancy. An added benefit of using the herbs is that both women and men can use them. As women, we are a little more tolerant to doctors having access to our private parts. Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 10.05.10 AMMen are, typically, more resistant to having issues surrounding their family jewels scrutinized. The herbs provide a non-threatening way for them to try and deal with fertility issues they might have with their sperm. The herbs don’t guarantee success, but if you have an imbalance in your system, they are a great first step in correcting that. Provide your body with the hormonal balance it needs in order to get pregnant, and the chances of having that baby increases. We have had many couples come back and say that they finally succeeded in conceiving after trying the herbs, and sometimes, this is after they had doctors, unsuccessfully, involved. We love those types of stories!

Adding A Little Hope to Every Order

We would love to be able to wave a magic baby wand to help our customers reach their goal of getting pregnant. It is heartbreaking to watch the emotional struggle that many have in achieving their dream of holding their newborn baby in their arms. Included in every order is a complimentary packet of baby dust. It is a reminder for you to not lose sight of your dream. We want you to know that we are right there with you and hoping you achieve your dream soon.

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 10.01.06 AMVickie Barnes is the co-founder of BabyHopes.com, an online retailer of herbal fertility treatments. Based in Morrisville, NC, Vickie and her husband, Steve, work to keep the hope of having a baby alive. In her free time, Vickie spends time with her kids and likes to sneak away and read a good book every now and then. Want to ask Vickie a question? You can find her on twitter, facebook, or send an email.

{ 0 comments }

Keeping a journal is a powerful tool for relieving stress, providing clarity of thoughts and emotions, and helping to achieve greater inner harmony.

A member of the Circle + Bloom community recently reached out to us because she wanted to tap into these amazing benefits, but wondered, “Where do I begin?” Her question made me realize that we need to do a better job of laying the groundwork for this incredible daily practice!

-1Journaling is a very personal process…and one size shouldn’t fit all. In other words, you might try a few different avenues or methods to find what works best for you.

And most importantly, there is no right or wrong way to do this! Like meditation, there is evidence to support the theory that repetition and consistency are much more important than the amount of time spent on mindfulness and reflection activities. More than trying to feel that you need to do a long and involved journal entry, just try to take 5 minutes a day and make it a habit.

When you sit down to write, ask yourself a simple question – “How am I feeling today?” – and then set your timer for 5 minutes, and start writing! Be truthful, brutal, honest and open.

Allow yourself to express the full range of emotions that you feel without shame, embarrassment, or any other self-regulating thoughts. Allow your reactions to come in loud and clear, and be the witnesser and recorder of those thoughts.

Something truly amazing happens when you do this!

You provide yourself with a safe zone of reflection and you start to realize there are two of you – the thinking and emotional mind, and the witnesser of those thoughts and emotions. Becoming more aligned with the witnesser of those thoughts and emotions is the key to finding peace within. Buddhists call this “enlightenment.”

So, let me summarize in five simple steps for how to make the most of your journaling experience each and everyday:

  1. Make it a daily, but short, habit (5 minutes).
  2. Get yourself a journal that feels good in your hands…something that you will feel a physical connection with. HomeGoods or TJMaxx actually have a great selection and they are cheap! But if you don’t have a journal yet, use what you have. Don’t let that become a barrier to getting started today!
  3. Create a calming ritual around your journaling time. Sit down in a quiet place, maybe have a cup of tea, or light a soothing candle.
  4. Ask yourself the simple question “What am I feeling today?”
  5. Set a timer for 5 minutes and write whatever comes to mind! Do not self-regulate or pass judgment on your thoughts and feelings – just be open and honest.

We recently wrote this blog post about keeping a gratitude journal, which is also very helpful! http://www.circlebloom.com/start-a-gratitude-journal-to-reap-amazing-benefits/

Tell us about your tips for journaling (or favorite place to get a journal) in the comments or on our Facebook page.

{ 0 comments }

You’re Invited To Join Our New Infertility Support Circle

by mroth October 6, 2014

Circle + Bloom is so pleased to introduce the C + B Infertility Support Circle, a private Facebook group created to serve women living with infertility. Living with infertility can leave you feeling isolated, with no one to talk to, who really understands this reality. Rest assured that you don’t have to walk this journey [...]

Read the full article →

Managing the Costs of Infertility

by mroth September 26, 2014

Do you ever feel overwhelmed with the mounting costs of infertility treatments? For many couples, the financial strain associated with trying to conceive is an uphill battle in itself! Fortunately, our friends at Fertility Within Reach are doing some wonderful work and providing expertise on how to ask your insurance company to cover health care [...]

Read the full article →

Pay It Forward Fertility Summer – Reaching Goals and Circle+Bloom’s Gift to You!

by mroth September 10, 2014

After months of sharing, learning, and growing together as a community, our Pay It Forward Fertility Summer Challenge is drawing to a close. We received so many touching and thoughtful responses from all of you throughout the course of our summer challenges and we are thrilled to announce that we had 282 total pay it [...]

Read the full article →

Natural Family Fair Returns Sept. 14

by mroth September 8, 2014

SAN DIEGO, CALIF. (June 13, 2014) – Natural Baby Pros, Hullabaloo, and Reproductive Wellness present the 5th annual Natural Family Fair, Sunday, Sept. 14, 2014 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. The Natural Baby Fair, Fertility Expo and Hullabaloo Family Music Festival combine for a fun-filled day of learning and [...]

Read the full article →

8 Powerful Ways I Stay Calm Through Any Situation

by mroth September 5, 2014

I cannot lie. Stress consumes me. Yup, the creator of *relaxation programs* is a stress-monger. There are nights that I lie in bed, starring at the ceiling amidst a personal hurricane of regret, worry and general negativity. It usually surrounds a situation of dealing with others in my life… or a sudden life event that [...]

Read the full article →

Pay It Forward Fertility Summer – Challenge Four

by mroth August 26, 2014

It’s time for our fourth Pay it Forward Fertility Summer Challenge. Please join us in this final push to pay fertility forward and we will pay it forward to you! Here’s how it works: Challenge #4: CELEBRATE BREAKTHROUGHS This spring I received a touching and inspirational story from a woman named Ashley. Ashley and her [...]

Read the full article →

I Need a WHAT??? Life, Work and Babies after 40

by mroth August 19, 2014

Guest Blog by Jessica Rutzick, Founder of Premium Egg Donation, Inc. When I was unceremoniously dumped by my long-term boyfriend at the age of thirty-five, I had to find a way out of my heartbreak. Yes, I was upset about losing the guy, but I was altogether heartbroken about losing the chance to have a [...]

Read the full article →

Pay It Forward Fertility Summer – Challenge Three

by mroth August 8, 2014

August is here and it’s time to issue a new call to action for our Pay It Forward Fertility Summer Challenge. Please continue to help us pay fertility forward by joining in our third challenge and we’ll pay it forward to you! Here’s how it works: Challenge #3: GROWING THE CIRCLE Your outpouring of support [...]

Read the full article →

Circle+Bloom’s Favorite Summer Reading Blog Posts

by mroth July 30, 2014

Summer is in full swing here in North Carolina! The sun is shining and everywhere I look, the world is in full bloom. There are so many wonderful things to see and do during the summer months, but one of my favorite warm weather pastimes has always been finding a quiet spot in the shade [...]

Read the full article →

Pay It Forward Fertility Summer – Challenge Two

by mroth July 22, 2014

The Pay It Forward Fertility Summer is under way! Help us pay fertility forward by joining in the second challenge and we’ll pay it forward to you. Here’s how it works: Challenge #2: REFER & REVIEW Building a supportive community surrounding the fertility journey is of utmost importance to us. In order to strengthen our [...]

Read the full article →

Through the Heart

by mroth July 7, 2014

Guest blog post by Karen Kelly of Through the Heart. My name is Dr. Karen Kelly and in February 2013, my husband and I lost our daughter at 20 weeks. It was a devastating experience and we quickly learned of the lack of resources available to those who have suffered pregnancy loss. We believe everyone [...]

Read the full article →

Pay It Forward Fertility Summer – Challenge One

by mroth July 3, 2014

The Pay It Forward Fertility Summer starts today! Help us pay fertility forward by joining in the first challenge and we’ll pay it forward to you. Here’s how it works: Challenge #1: SHARE We believe there is great power in sharing in the journey to fertility. We don’t conceive alone or parent alone – or [...]

Read the full article →

Pay it Forward Fertility Summer Challenge

by mroth July 1, 2014

Circle and Bloom began from a very personal place. Having experienced my own struggles with fertility, I set out to help others conceive and in a way, I started a circle. Over time, that circle grew. Our community grew. The web of support grew. And the fertility rates grew. The number of successful births grew. [...]

Read the full article →

Let’s Get Leafy – Six Delicious Ways to Add Folate to Your Days

by mroth June 26, 2014

Leafy greens and dark green vegetables are an excellent source of folate (or folic acid), an essential B vitamin that supports healthy pregnancy in a number of ways. During the beginning stages of pregnancy, folate supports fetal brain development by preventing neural tube defects that can cause spina bifida and anencephaly. Folate also contributes to [...]

Read the full article →

Bankrolling Fertility Treatment: No Sucker Punches Allowed

by mroth June 24, 2014

Guest Blog by Rosanne Austin, founder of Maybe to Baby. Join Rosanne Austin for a special free webinar on July 2 called Paying For Fertility Treatment: Sucker Punch Proof Your Plan. Learn 3 Key Steps for creating a fertility treatment financial plan that can help eliminate freak-outs, sucker punches, and silly spending. Read on for [...]

Read the full article →

Trying to Conceive After Age 40

by mroth June 11, 2014

I hear from a number of women who are over 40 and wondering if our programs can help them to achieve their dream of having a baby. In fact, we recently received a call on our customer service line from a kind woman who inquired about our pregnancy program. After answering her questions about it [...]

Read the full article →

Fertility Revolution: Hope, Inspiration, Strength, and Fertility Resources

by mroth June 2, 2014

Guest Blog by Julie Chang, founder and host of Fertility Revolution. Have you heard about the new Fertility Revolution? The podcast will feature many respected fertility doctors, complementary fertility practitioners, attorneys, infertility advocates, published authors, health & wellness experts, and more…including yours truly! About Julie Chang and Fertility Revolution: Hi, I’m Julie Chang, founder and [...]

Read the full article →

Finding Your Thing During IVF Treatment

by mroth May 14, 2014

Guest Blog by Stephanie Fry, author/blogger of The IVF Journal book. Anyone who is battling infertility and undergoing IVF treatment knows that there are loads of options when it comes to selecting complementary treatments and therapies. There are diets, exercises, mind body options, acupuncture, acupressure, massage, yoga, herbal remedies and so much more. With all [...]

Read the full article →

Finding Time to Meditate: Keeping Yourself Healthy

by mroth May 6, 2014

Guest Blog by Ken Myers. Although nutrition is a vital component to keeping yourself healthy, relaxing your body through meditation could be almost as important. The mind can do a great deal for your physical form, and practicing methods of meditation can make an impact in ways you never thought before. What’s more, you don’t [...]

Read the full article →

A Thank You Special Coupon for Your Awesome Participation

by mroth May 1, 2014

Please join me in congratulating Celeste G., the winner of our 30 Days of Fertility campaign! She’ll receive our entire product line of downloads for participating and helping to support all women on the fertility journey. I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to every single one of you who participated. It was an amazing [...]

Read the full article →

How and Why to Build a Support Network during Infertility Treatment

by mroth May 1, 2014

Guest Blog by Stephanie Fry, author of The IVF Journal book. Back in 2009, I was lucky enough to help the folks at Circle + Bloom as they developed their IVF/IUI Mind-Body Program by giving them a patients perspective on an IVF cycle. Since then their product has helped thousands of women and I hope [...]

Read the full article →

You Will NEVER Outrun the Darkness

by mroth April 23, 2014

Guest Blog by Suzanne Hanna, a Licensed Psychotherapist, Holistic Health Practitioner, Spiritual Coach, Writer, and Inspirational Speaker. It can happen in a moment, usually after a life-changing realization or event. Everything goes dark. The air in your body gets sucked from your lungs. A lead ball crashes into your core, leaving you weak. Your throat [...]

Read the full article →

Rebecca Fett’s “It Starts With The Egg”

by mroth April 21, 2014

I’ve found another book to add to my list of recommended reading related to fertility! Rebecca Fett’s It Starts With The Egg is an important read, and one I am happy to see getting such positive feedback. Circle+Bloom is grounded in science. The development of our mind-body programs was done in collaboration with the professional [...]

Read the full article →

Dealing With Pregnancy Hormones

by mroth April 13, 2014

Guest Blog by Cheretta A Clerkley, a strategic marketing health care professional for Hormone Health Network. She has worked for over 10 years in direct patient education focusing on hormone health. Being pregnant affects a lot more than your body. The outward signs of expecting a baby become more apparent over time, but the emotional [...]

Read the full article →

Circle+Bloom Around the World!

by mroth April 7, 2014

Hello! My name is Meagan. Some of you may already know me if you are a Circle+Bloom partner since I help work with our wonderful affiliates and partners. If not–hi! It’s nice to ‘meet’ you I also do some of the blog writing here. I’m going to take advantage of that and use this post [...]

Read the full article →

30 Days of Fertility – Share the Journey with Us

by mroth April 1, 2014

This April, in honor of National Infertility Awareness Week, we’re launching a “30 Days of Fertility” campaign to support all women embarking on the fertility journey and we hope you’ll join us! We’ve always believed in the power of mind + body awareness as it pertains to fertility. Our programs help explore the connection between [...]

Read the full article →

Pump Some Iron Into Your Diet to Help Promote Fertility

by mroth March 25, 2014

I have to apologize right off the bat to those of you who may still have snow on the ground, but spring seems to have sprung in North Carolina and I could not be more happy! Whenever the seasons change I get excited to spend some time in my kitchen. New ingredients that arrive with [...]

Read the full article →

Can Yoga Increase Fertility?

by mroth March 24, 2014

Guest blog by Sandra Mills. Fertility struggles can feel like you’re stuck on a hamster wheel in a cage you did not choose. Couples undergoing fertility treatments suddenly feel like they no longer have control of the most intimate parts of their bodies and their relationship, and it is stressful. That stress adversely affects fertility, [...]

Read the full article →

Three New Medical Findings on PCOS and How they May Impact Your Ability to Conceive

by mroth March 19, 2014

1. In vitro maturation (IVM) With traditional IVF, patients typically inject themselves with hormone medications for eight to 10 days to stimulate the ovaries into producing multiple eggs for fertilization. But hormone injections aren’t always the best choice for PCOS patients because they have an increased risk for ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) – a condition [...]

Read the full article →

Why Become an Egg Donor?

by mroth March 14, 2014

Guest Blog by Natalie on behalf of The London Egg Bank. Becoming an egg donor is an altruistic affair. Many women choose to become egg donors so that they can give the gift of parenthood to those couples who have embarked upon the difficult and emotional journey of trying to conceive. Some women may have [...]

Read the full article →

4 Ways to Restore Your Energy

by mroth March 12, 2014

Yesterday afternoon I found myself becoming really sluggish. In fact, while driving home I got so sleepy that I needed to pull over and rest my eyes a bit. A bit embarrassing to have to admit that! It got me thinking about energy and how we all struggle with maintaining our energy levels throughout the [...]

Read the full article →

3 Books About Infertility Support We Love

by mroth March 4, 2014

We’ve been doing a lot of reading while we wait for warm weather to arrive and wanted to share some recommendations for books that are wonderful resources for dealing with infertility. There are plenty of good ones out there, so be sure to check our ‘books we love‘ page for more recommendations, as well as [...]

Read the full article →

5 Stages to Starting the Month off with a Positive Attitude after a BFN (Big Fat Negative)

by mroth February 28, 2014

How are you doing? Be honest, you can tell me if you’re feeling like crap. I won’t judge! In fact, I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how to deal with the really crumby emotions that surround that time of the month where you have a BFN (Big Fat Negative). Not an easy time. Thinking [...]

Read the full article →

The I Stands Alone

by mroth February 24, 2014

Guest Blog by Lindsay Agne, founder of Full Circle. There has been alot of talk about VULNERABILITY lately. Brene Brown and her TED talk brought a spot light to that word and it spread like wildfire. SHAME is another biggie. Why is there such a stigma around infertility? IS it that despite the numbers showing [...]

Read the full article →

Fitness – The Key to Conception

by mroth February 17, 2014

Contributed by freelance writer. While some women can conceive without any problems, others are not so lucky. Those in the latter group can attest to the frustration and disappointment associated with trying different procedures to no avail. Not surprisingly, the stress of being unable to conceive often worsens the situation. Female hormone imbalance Doctors have [...]

Read the full article →

Stories to Brighten Your Day

by mroth February 13, 2014

Well another snow storm is suppose to hit Charlotte this week, but that’s not putting a damper on my day. Why? Because of these two wonderful success stories I received recently. I wanted to share them with you because they filled me with hope and joy when I read them. We all need a little [...]

Read the full article →

What Exactly is a Fertility Coach?

by mroth February 6, 2014

Guest blog by Smita Parikh, MD, founder of The Fertility Advisor. Just two years ago, I sat in a corner at my nephew’s first birthday party with a fake smile plastered on my face as kids buzzed by me and a sing along was taking place. What should have been a fun and happy occasion [...]

Read the full article →

3 Exercises to Relieve Back Pain During Pregnancy

by mroth February 4, 2014

Guest Blog by Melissa Hubbard. As your beloved baby bump grows, you’re getting closer and closer to the arrival of your dear little one. As your baby grows, however, so do back aches and pain in the pelvic area, joints and ligaments. No matter what kind of shape you’re in, the excess weight of pregnancy [...]

Read the full article →

Dealing With The Unexpected

by mroth January 31, 2014

Whoa is it cold here! Don’t I live in the south? Certainly doesn’t feel like it…but I suppose comparatively to some parts of the country, it’s downright balmy here. We actually got some a bit of snow in North Carolina, which is on its third day of staying on the ground. So bizarre! Of course, [...]

Read the full article →

“The Big Lie” Book by Tanya Selvaratnam

by mroth January 27, 2014

Guest Blog by Tanya Selvaratnam, author of ‘The Big Lie’. I got the idea for The Big Lie after my third miscarriage at the age of 40 in fall 2011. I wrote the book that I wished I could have read then. In the book, I explore many Big Lies. The Big Lie is that [...]

Read the full article →

Healthy Eating Does More for Infertility than You May Realize

by mroth January 21, 2014

Guest Blog by Nancy Parker. When it comes to command of your body, your diet plays a very important role. The adage, “You are what you eat” is true in every sense of the statement. Everything you put into your body is used in order to be as healthy or as unfit as you want. [...]

Read the full article →

Healing Of The Heart

by mroth January 14, 2014

“All healing is first a healing of the heart.” – Carl Townsend I hope all is well and your new year is off to a great start! Do you have anything you want to share with me? Any questions, concerns, or stories? Please do email me and let me know. This time of year always [...]

Read the full article →