Monday, 28 September 2015

Not All Friendships Are Forever

Making new friends as an adult is a lot like dating. The first time you get together on your own you may go out for coffee. Then you exchange some texts. Maybe you have dinner or go see a movie. You chat about what you have in common and see if you "click". With a little luck, you've found someone who will be significant in your life. You slowly build your tribe.

So it's no surprise that ending a friendship as an adult also feels similar to leaving a relationship. You stop talking to each other, you disconnect on social media, you move on. You essentially "break up".

I can't pinpoint exactly the moment things went awry. There wasn't a big blowout or fight that ended it all. It just became clear that our values and interests weren't the same anymore. A tension was growing. I kept hoping that this shift in our fault lines would somehow blow over and things would go back to the way they were. This was a friend I had loved dearly for years. But things were not ok, and it was time to stop pretending that they were. Eventually, I made a clear decision to back away from the friendship.

It was very difficult. I worried that my family and other close friends would think I was giving up. I certainly didn't want our mutual friends to feel uncomfortable. However, I knew I had to do it in order to restore balance in my life.

There have been 2 or 3 times in my adult life I feel I've had to consciously end a friendship. It seems so juvenile to talk about doing this as an adult, yet it must be a sign of growth. That you're learning more about who you are and who you need in your life.

It's a lifelong quest for all of us. How do we surround ourselves with friends we love and who love us back? It takes time to grow friendships as we build confidence and trust. And when we find those few friends with whom we do "click", it's beautiful.

Sometimes things happen. Maybe it's one person's fault. Maybe it's not. If there's one constant in life, it's that it changes all the time.

We would never encourage anyone to stay in a romantic relationship that had become extremely negative, and we shouldn't stand for anything less with our friendships. A good friend is as essential as breathing. This we know for sure. In the same vein, a toxic friendship is damaging to our health.

Elizabeth Gilbert calls it surrendering. When you come to the end of your power. 

It's not easy to end a friendship. Messages are misunderstood; feelings inevitability get hurt. But I can say that afterwards, you will feel lighter and happier. I thought there was going to be this huge hole in my life, but I was wrong. Making this decision created room in my life. For my family. For old friends. For new friends. For me.

I'm sad for the way things turned out, and I try to look back and remember the good parts of our friendship instead of focusing on the end. But it's time to move on. Channel our inner Elsa and let it go.


Monday, 21 September 2015

Sex After Baby - Ten Things You Can Do Today to Get Your Mojo Back {Guest Post}

We're doing it. We're going to talk about sex after baby. Let me be the first to say that the infamous 6 week checkup post-baby doesn't mean a damn thing. I refuse to believe that I am the only one that preferred sleep to sex for a good, long while after we brought home our newborn from the hospital.

So, without feeling like you need to from 0 to 50 Shades of Grey, what's a mama (or papa) to do? To help us out, I've brought in an expert. I'm so excited to welcome my friend Kim and her sister, Amy,  from Red Tent Sisters. They've put together a list of 10 tips and 4 books to help you get your groove back when you've lost that lovin' feeling. Welcome, Kim and Amy!

Whether you’re navigating parenthood, suffering from the effects of hormonal birth control, or experiencing an unexplained libido mismatch with your partner, having a low sex drive can be frustrating at best and a relationship crusher at worst. Before you throw up your arms and turn to pharmacological solutions (with a whole host of their own side effects) consider implementing some of the natural solutions below.

1. Get the ball rolling. While we don’t want to suggest doing something you don’t want to, sometimes it can be helpful to just get started (as long as there’s no pressure to continue). You may find that after reading some erotica, listening to some sultry tunes, or making out with your partner that you’re in the mood to take it further. Or maybe not. That’s the key – to make sure it’s about staying in the moment rather than focusing on a particular end goal.

2. Make sure the sex you are having is pleasurable. It’s a lot easier to get excited about getting it on when you know it’ll be good for you. You may have heard about the statistic that 70% of women need some kind of clitoral stimulation in order to orgasm. If you’re in that category, we highly recommend including activities like oral sex and manual stimulation, and/or using a vibe.

3. Get movin’ and groovin’. Exercise can do wonders for your mood (hello endorphins!). Activities like walking, yoga and pilates are especially helpful for boosting your libido because they increase blood flow to the pelvis. If you don’t currently have an exercise practice, we suggest starting small.  For instance, we do a series of stretches three times a day that only take about five minutes (they help pass the time while we’re waiting for the kettle to boil). Our office mates get a kick out of us turning the lunchroom into our own personal yoga studio ;)

4. Soak up some sun. Ever notice you feel friskier in the summer than the winter? There’s a reason for that - Vitamin D! Vitamin D is a pro-hormone (meaning it’s used to build hormones in our body) so a deficiency can cause a number of problems, including a lower sex drive. Researchers estimate that about 75% of us aren’t getting enough Vitamin D naturally, so to compensate we recommend taking a supplement.

5. Cook up some libido-boosting foods. Stuffing yourself with oysters won't magically supercharge your libido, but dietary changes can make a big difference. In general a whole foods diet that is low in sugar, alcohol and caffeine (which we should be doing anyway, right?) is the way to go. You'll also want to add a few foods to your diet that can help to balance your sex hormones. Get some inspiration with this free PDF of 5 libido boosting foods.

6. Catch some Zzzs. If you have trouble getting to sleep, you’re not alone. A survey found that 8.6 million Americans are taking sleeping pills (and the majority of those are women).  To help get a better night sleep naturally, we suggest ensuring your room is dark. Amy got blackout curtains and it made a huge difference, or you could try a sleep mask. More serious sleep difficulties are usually hormonally related and/or caused by nutrient deficiencies (like magnesium). Consult your health practitioner or for support if you suffer from chronic insomnia.

7. Unplug, literally. Your bed should be for sleeping (and getting it on!) not checking email. We suggest leaving phones and laptops outside the bedroom so that you can focus on your partner, not your cranky boss.

8. Send a sexy text to your sweetie (or get them to send one to you). When Kim coaches clients and friends on their sex lives she often uncovers a mismatch in expectations. One partner may have spent the day getting revved up thinking about sexy scenarios for when they get home, while the other may have been dreaming about spending the evening in sweats in front of the TV. So when they meet up, their "heads" are in pretty different places. One way to help get on the same page is to send fun texts during the day detailing what you’d like to do when you see each other. Not only will this help make sure you have the same vision for the night, but it also helps build anticipation and arousal.

9. Meditate. There’s no question that stress is a serious libido killer. It’s hard to get in the mood when your mind is focused on work, money, and your mile-long to-do list. Plus, stress impacts our hormones. If you only choose to implement one thing on this list, we highly recommend you make it stress management. Personally we’ve found meditation to be the most effective tool. If you don’t have a meditation practice and you’re looking for inspiration, check out the app Stop Breathe and Think.

10. Know your cycle. If you are menstruating, knowing your cycle is an important tool in understanding your libido. Many of Amy’s clients (and their partners) refer to the post-ovulatory phase of their cycle as the “drought season.” This phase of the cycle has naturally lowered testosterone and decreased lubrication. This means it can be less comfortable to have sex, and take longer to get aroused. By tracking your cycle you’ll have a better sense of how your libido naturally waxes and wanes, and you and your partner can plan accordingly. If you’re on hormonal birth control, you may want to consider ditching it, since a lot of research shows that hormonal contraception (ironically!) has a negative effect on libido.


Here are some books that Kim recommends. I had no idea there were books specifically about sex for moms. That's totally new for me. Kim's favourite is the newly published Come as You Are, by Emily Nagoski. Kim says, "Emily talks about the "dual control" of libido and how we all have an accelerator and brakes when it comes to our sex drive. Some of us have a more sensitive brake (things that turn us off) and some have a more sensitive accelerator (things that turn us on). Therefore, it's important to know whether you need to focus more on "turning the offs off" (body image, stress, etc.) or increasing the "ons" (sex toys, erotica, etc). It's incredibly well researched (you should see the list of references!) and yet also accessible so it doesn't feel like you're reading a textbook ;)"

That actually sounds super interesting to me, so I may check that one out. Here's the Chapters link to Come As You Are if you 're an Indigo fan like me!

Thank you so much Kim and Amy for sharing your expertise.

PS - Kim and I are hoping to put together a Q & A type post next, so if you have any questions for her about this topic, or anything connected to sexual health, feel free to leave them in the comments below, or you can email me at or Kim at All of the questions will be anonymous.

Kim & Amy Sedgwick love to discuss sex, periods, and all the other things we’re not supposed to talk about. The co-founders of Red Tent Sisters and, they’ve been featured in every major Canadian news outlet and have become a trusted resource for women seeking natural (effective!) birth control, a more joyful sex life, and an empowered journey to motherhood.
Find them on Facebook and Twitter.

Friday, 11 September 2015

Weekends are for Reading: Book Review of Inspector Dewey + A GIVEAWAY!

I could write a description of the book I'm reviewing this week, but I think it's better if you hear it right from the cat's mouth :)

My name is Dewey--Inspector Dewey.

I live in the big green house on Hampshire Avenue with my family: Thumper, Lily, and Anna. I am the Big Cat—responsible for keeping everyone safe and in order. I do this quite well, in spite of the fact that managing my family is like, well, herding cats!

Mostly our life is peaceful. But one night it wasn’t. That was the night the bad guy showed up on our block. Of course, I knew exactly how to outsmart the outlaw, but—miserable mullet!—would Anna and the police understand my instructions?

To find out how the adventure ended, you’ll have to read my book. But I’ll give you a hint: there’s a reason I’m called Inspector Dewey.

Inspector Dewey is a very adorable children's story. I really enjoyed the playful writing style, and I think the author did a wonderful job of creating "voices" for the cats in the story. While cat-lovers will undoubtedly love Inspector Dewey, I'd also say you don't need to be a cat-lover to love this book. This sweet story would be a wonderful addition to any child's library.

I also found it very interesting that this is somewhat based on a true story. The author, Kristen Heimerl, got the idea for Inspector Dewey after an encounter with an unexpected intruder. What a lovely way to turn a potentially terrifying situation into something so positive! Note - The book Inspector Dewey is not at all terrifying :)

The illustrator of Inspector Dewey is Irene Bofill. Her images are very charming and have a bit of a whimsical feeling. I really love that there is a clear colour theme for the book of blue, yellow, and white. Each page flows beautifully to the next.

Some of the vocabulary is probably a little better suited to school-aged children than toddlers, so I'm looking forward to reading this story more often when our little one is a bit bigger; however our three-year-old loved that there was cat named Lily in the story, because we also have a cat named Lily!

Overall, I think this is a really lovely children's book that would make a beautiful gift, especially for an animal-loving home.

And to make buying or gifting this book even sweeter, fifty percent of the profits from the sale of this book will fund veterinary care for pets whose families are in financial need, so that animals can remain in their homes and out of the shelter system. Learn more at

Inspector Dewey is available for purchase on,, and Barnes and Noble

Our Lily keeping watch after reading Inspector Dewey.
You can learn more about Inspector Dewey or find fun, free Inspector Dewey activities at his website. There are colouring pages, an Inspector Dewey Detective Kit, and more. You can also follow Inspector Dewey on his Facebook page.


Disclaimer - I received a copy of this book for review purposes. All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.