Posted in Motherhood, Product Review, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized

The Joys of Good Customer Service

Recently, I’ve gotten into the Amazon reviewing game, and I find that it’s a fun little side hobby where I get to try products out for less cost in exchange for honest Amazon reviews. Now, I don’t expect much when I apply for products to review. As a matter of fact, a lot of my time is spent weeding out sellers who try to scam the systems that are set in place. I’ve applied for numerous products, and when confronted with a problem with a code that I’m given, often times, I’m ignored. Which is fine. I don’t mind. I know that this is something that people take advantage of, and so I don’t expect much.

Which is why my latest encounter was such a pleasant surprise.

I applied on one of my various websites to review a teething necklace at a pretty steep discount. Surprisingly, I was approved, and I was super excited to use the code I was given and purchase the product. Unfortunately, there was a problem with the code when I input it into Amazon…the discount wasn’t what the website stated it should be. I emailed the client, and let them know that there was a problem, fully expecting to get the brush off one more time.

Yet, almost within five minutes, I had a response from the fantastic rep. She apologized for the mixup and went in to fix the code on Amazon’s end. She then told me that there would be an approximate four hour waiting period for the code to work, and that I should try again sometime after that. This entire exchange was super pleasant.

More than four hours later, I tried again, still to no avail. I wrote her back, telling her of the same issue, and offered to apply for a different necklace or get another code. I was floored by her response.

Awe, you are so sweet, thank you!!  You and one other person had the exact same problem.  I think it’s on Amazon’s end not being able to input the new code.   What I did for her was just sent her one directly to her house (I keep some on hand exactly for this reason :).
I’ll send you whichever one you prefer at no cost.  I’m truly sorry that this turned into such a pain.
If you send me your address, I can get it into the mail for you  in the morning.
This woman, who didn’t owe me anything, apologized to ME and offered me the necklace at no charge. She was so kind didn’t have to do anything for me, someone who is just trying to test out some things in exchange for reviews.
She didn’t ask me to, but I’m going to tell all of you, that Snuggle Bunny Beads TM is one of the most amazing companies I have ever had the pleasure of doing business with. Once I get my necklaces (because I went ahead and bought the other one anyway), I will definitely post a review here.
So thank you again! If you’re in the market for a good new mom gift, these necklaces are awesome, and I highly recommend them!
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Posted in Motherhood, Random Thoughts, Teaching, Uncategorized

On Being a Mother and a Teacher

Sorry about being away for so long…not that it was super noticeable. Such is the life of a mother, I suppose. I came down with a pretty bad cold, and then ended up on Spring Break…and that meant taking care of the Goober. Now I’m back on track and ready to write more about stuff and things!

Today’s thoughts come from a conversation that my students were having yesterday. They are often times some of the most insightful people I have in my life, surprising me at the most interesting moments. Yesterday was no exception.

So, I had given my students an assignment to simply write about their Spring Break. I know it wasn’t particularly interesting, but when you’re coming back from a long break, often times a simple, “Hey, we’re back here and we have work to do” assignment works best. My students were in various phases of their work. Some of them had thrown themselves into the writing, and others, per usual, were spending their time talking with someone next to them. They’re Juniors, I get it.

All of a sudden, one of my students pipes up with some random commentary. I’ll try to do her justice in my recollection of what she said.

“Mrs. A? Can I just talk for a minute? As I was writing, I had a thought. I’m almost an adult. I’m 16 years old. Soon, I’m going to be out of my house, going to be away from my family. Mrs. A…I’m scared. I don’t want to leave my mother! I just want to spend time with her. I think I realized that over spring break…I just wanted to be with her and spend time with her. And it makes me sad and scared to think that soon, I won’t be able to do that.”

Now, my students don’t normally talk a lot about their families, and when they do, I almost never get thoughts like these. Most of the time, it’s “Ugh, my mother is so annoying. She got mad at me over nothing!” But this…this conversation left me with a lot of thoughts. I listened to the rest of the class talk with her about their own thoughts on the matter, and it made my eyes tear up.

I think that part of it is again my newfound motherhood. That and my own connection with my own mother. It’s amazing how in hindsight we see things with such clarity. And it’s amazing how this one student sees with clarity right now how her relationship with her own mother is going to change.

While not everyone has a great relationship with their parents, seeing that they still exist makes my heart warm. We all go through growing pains with our parents, but knowing that time with them is precious is a valuable lesson to learn. Hearing that some of my students appreciate their parents gives me hope.

Do any of you remember having that feeling at any point? Are there any memories of your parents that you’d like to share? I look forward to seeing it in the comments!

Posted in Motherhood, Uncategorized

The Age Old Mommy Debate

Let me say, I love being a mother. I love taking care of my son, I love watching him grow…labor and delivery wasn’t a cake walk, but I love what I have, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

But you know what I can’t stand? Other mothers. I’m sure you’ve heard it before. But it’s the truth. If you have ever stepped foot onto one of the ten million “mommy boards” online, you’ll maybe get a taste of what I’m talking about. It becomes a veritable pissing contest over who is the best mom.

“Oh, I breastfed my first baby from the time he was born until he left for college!”
“I’m going to do baby led weaning, but when I do, I just know I’m going to use all organic, non-GMO, gluten-free products.”
“I would NEVER feed my baby cereal!”
“If a mother doesn’t even TRY to breastfeed her infant, I consider her selfish.”

Those same comments go on and on, and are a frequent part of any trip to any board that claims it’s for moms. Now sure, not all women on these boards are like this. But the ones that are tend to be extremely vocal about it. And if you’re a first time mother, you can leave these places feeling like you’re the worst mother in the universe, instead of someone who is doing the best they can for their child.

I’m lucky that although I am a new mother, I have a wonderful support system around me. My mother and mother-in-law are both within a 30 minute driving distance, and they are both only a phone call away. So when I was making decisions about how to raise my son, I got a lot of input from both of them.

And I made a decision that has gotten me a lot of flak from the mothers in the community. I decided to Formula Feed from day one.

I’ve been judged. I’ve been called selfish. I’ve heard mothers extol at length the benefits of Breastfeeding, even for a few days. I mean, seriously, do these women not understand the inundation that most women get once they become pregnant? From your first appointment, the doctors tell you all of the benefits of breastfeeding. It’s not that I was ignorant of this information. But it wasn’t the choice for me.

I had a particularly difficult labor and delivery, complete with an episiotomy, which made recovery horrible. For at least the first day after delivery, I couldn’t get out of the hospital bed without immense pain. That meant that I wasn’t getting up to change or feed the baby. My husband did. And he was fantastic. And in order for him to share in that duty, we went with formula.

Another reason is that my milk never fully came in, and I didn’t really want it to come it. I was scared. And uncomfortable with the idea of breastfeeding. I know that it’s a natural thing, but coming from a family where it wasn’t done, just made me feel uncomfortable with the idea. Plus, I didn’t want to make a commitment I couldn’t keep. I had heard the horror stories of pain and sleepless nights…I know what kind of a person I am. If I had had to deal with that on top of my recovery, I would not have made it, and I know I would have felt guilty as a mother. A failure.

But you know what? I don’t need to justify my reasons to anyone. Why anyone feels the need to judge me for this, I will never understand. Does my baby get fed? Is he happy and healthy? Is he growing like he should? Yes, to all of these. R is four months old now, and weighs close to 18 lbs. He sleeps like a champ, from about 10pm until 8am. He’s happy and bright, is hitting his milestones, and has yet to be sick…AND I’ve brought him into the school where I work…twice.

Instead of making other women feel bad about their decisions, we need to work on building each other up. Motherhood is hard. Fulfilling. Rewarding. Magnificent. But friggin’ hard. I think it would be a lot easier if we had a support system of other mothers telling us that we’re doing what’s right for us and our babies, instead of making us feel like we’re inadequate.

Has anyone else experienced this judgement from other moms? Are you one of those mothers who judges others? Let me know in the comments! I look forward to hearing your stories!

 

~Aly, aka The Mommy Gamer