Surrogacy 101

What You Need to Know About This Growing Reproduction Option

Whether you are interested in hiring a surrogate or becoming one, this opportunity to help families grow is increasing in popularity across the United States. At the most basic definition, surrogacy is when a woman carries and delivers a baby for another couple. However, that really is an oversimplification of multiple vast and rewarding reproductive options.

If you are on this page it means you have been drawn to surrogacy for one reason or another. Maybe you and your partner have struggled to conceive by traditional means but want to experience the pregnancy journey and have a biological baby. Perhaps you are on the other end and want to help another couple grow and build a loving family. Either way you have questions, and we’re here to provide you with some basic answers.

What is surrogacy?

Surrogacy, a type of reproduction option rapidly growing in the United States, helps intended parents start or add to their families. The rates of surrogacy have skyrocketed in the last few decades, increasing by 89 percent from 2004 to 2008. A surrogate mother is implanted with a fertilized embryo and then carries and delivers a baby for the intended parents. The surrogate waives all legal rights for the baby and has no legal claim as a parent.

Is the baby biologically mine or the surrogate’s?

For many heterosexual couples, the egg from a female parent and the sperm from the male parent are fertilized in a lab and then implanted in a surrogate mother who carries and delivers the baby. In this situation, the baby is 100 percent biologically the intended parents. If the carrier is a gestational surrogate, then her egg is the one used and therefore she is the biological mother of the child. For singles or same-sex couples, an egg or sperm donor will be needed in order to fertilize the embryo. It’s uncommon for the surrogate to provide the egg. In some cases, for both heterosexual and same-sex parents, egg donors and sperm donors may be needed in addition to the surrogate.

What is an egg donor and how do I become one?

Donating eggs for surrogacy can help make a dream come true for many intended parents. An egg donation is a way for intended parents to have assistance in how they build their family, and for an egg donor to help families grow while being financially compensated. There are many different kinds of egg donation situations, such as known (where the donor and intended parents interact with each other), semi-known (where some information is shared through a third party) and anonymous (where the intended parents and egg donor have no knowledge of each other). To become an egg donor, you must meet certain requirements for age, weight, education, family health history and more.

What kinds of interactions will I have with my family’s surrogate?

Working with a surrogate mother is a process that starts before conception and, in some cases, can extend beyond a baby’s birth. Many parents and surrogates develop a bond and deep friendships during the surrogacy process, often choosing to stay in each other’s lives. Others, while grateful for the experience, prefer to move on. When intended parents work with a gestational surrogate, one who is biologically related to the child, they often want to maintain a relationship for the emotional and physical well-being of their child. However, as the intended parent, you have the legal right to your child and the ability to decide what kind of relationship to have with the surrogate before, during and after the pregnancy.

Different surrogacy agencies will offer various packages catered to the kind of experience you want, from very basic interactions to a concierge experience. Your desires and goals, along with your budget, can help inform the kind of relationship you and your family have with the surrogate.

Surrogacy is a beneficial experience for everyone involved, from intended parents and surrogates to egg and sperm donors. Understanding what you can expect from the experience is instrumental in making sure everyone feel respected and elated for the journey ahead.

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Nurse Family Partnership – RGV

Expecting, new moms get support from Nurse Family Partnership :

When a woman is pregnant for the first time, she has dozens of questions and just as many opinions from friends and family. How can she learn to make the best choices for her and her baby? To help pregnant Valley women and new mothers through those unfamiliar times, the Nurse-Family Partnership pairs a first-time mother with her very own, personal nurse to guide her through pregnancy and give her expert health advice.


The national program launched in the Valley in 2012 and is offered for FREE by DHR Health Women’s Hospital. There is no waiting list at this time, and friendly nurses just like Gabby Calzada are ready to help expecting moms of all ages be the best moms they can be.


Vanessa Bocanegra was a high school senior and 24 weeks pregnant when she learned about Nurse-Family Partnership. Although she was nervous to meet Gabby, Vanessa was quickly put at ease and glad she made the decision to join the program.



Gabby met with Vanessa every other week throughout her pregnancy. Vanessa’s son Damian is now 14 months old and doing well, and Vanessa credits her nurse with making her feel proud to be a mom and fall even more in love with her son. Vanessa is confident in her parenting skills, because she knows how to listen for or notice exactly what Damian needs. Gabby has also given her important parenting support and answers at the times when she needed them the most.


There is not a waiting list for the Valley’s Nurse-Family Partnership program.


Pregnant women in Hidalgo County who are eligible for these free services can enroll immediately. Once enrolled, a first-time mother is connected with a personal nurse who can answer her questions about what to expect during her pregnancy, childbirth and taking care of her baby. To find out more, pregnant moms can visit

Helping First-Time Parents Succeed – Nurse-Family Partnership

With your very own free Nurse­-Family Partnership personal nurse, you will get the support, advice and information you need during your pregnancy and when your baby arrives.

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JBF McAllen Sale April 10th-11th!

JBF ( Just Between Friends) Sale is BACK! Mark those calendars for April 10-11, 2015 at the Nomad Shrine Club 1044 W. Nolana, Pharr TX.  Go shop or sign up to SELL! As parents we always have clothes, toys, books and more to get rid of.  Spring is just days away and that means time for Spring Cleaning.  This year instead of giving your stuff away try to SELL it and make some $$$.  Many have asked what can be sold and how does it work!  Here is some info we got from the JFB website to get you ready to sell.

What to sell??

 “Seasonally appropriate infants’, children’s and maternity clothing will be accepted . Please inspect your items carefully as they will also be inspected at drop off. To continue to offer an industry-leading sales event, only the highest quality merchandise is accepted. Clothes that are soiled, stained or with holes, will not be accepted”.

More Items Accepted:

  • children’s clothing
  • children’s books
  • family DVDs
  • carseats
  • highchairs
  • accessories
  • bedding sets
  • sports gear for children
  • dressy outfits
  • costumes
  • toys toys toys
  • outdoor play items
  • DS and DSi games
  • ride-on toys
  • dolls and action figures
  • coats and jackets for kids
  • ride-on toys
  • swings
  • joggers
  • electronic toys
  • strollers
  • Raincoats & rain boots
  • portable play mats
  • nursery decor
  • children’s shoes
  • baby carriers
  • diaper bags
  • onesies
  • nursing supplies
  • changing tables & so much more!

Make sure items are clean and not smelly!


Here is 5  Step process to sign up and sell!

Here is a quick overview of the consigning process with Just Between Friends.

1. Create a JBF Account to get a Consignor Number. Visit

2. Register with McAllen sales event.

3. Prepare your merchandise, tag it and then bring it to the sale.

(Follow the instructions to enter your tag information and double-check to make sure all the information appears the way you want it to appear. Tags must be printed on white card stock or else the barcode scanner cannot pick up the information and your tags will not work properly. You can find white cardstock at local office supply stores or order online. Tags print 4 to 6 per page, depending on the information entered.)

When pricing your items JBF ( Just Between Friends) recommends pricing the items at 1/4 to 1/2 of the original cost! Boutique and brand names in style may be priced higher.

4. After the sale, you pick up any unsold items you do not wish to donate.
5. About 2 weeks later, you receive your consignor check in the mail!


We hope this information helps get you set up with JBF!


Shoppers don’t forget you can get some AMAZING deals at show!  Toys, highchairs, cribs, infant clothes, children’s clothes and yes even Maternity Clothes.  Make sure to use the JBF ad in Tots-Tweens to get FREE admission or click on the link for  Free Admission AD

April 10-11, 2015 Schedule!

Friday, April 10th
8am – 6:00pm Open to the Public! $2 admission  (admission proceeds benefit our charity partner) Children, strollers, and wagons ARE allowed on this day.

Saturday, April 11th
50% Off Day – Open to the public~Free Admission!
8am – 2:00pm Items without a star are 50% off today only.

They  accept cash, MasterCard, Visa and Discover.

Attention First Time Moms, Mommies to be, Moms with a child under the age of 1 , Teachers and Military Wives : Sign up for an EXCLUSIVE PRIVATE SALE.  Register here by clicking here!


Happy Selling and Shopping! For more info visit




Lulu Hanke






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Simple Wishes Nursing Bra

Simple Wishes Nursing Bra – The BEST  nursing bra I’ve ever had. Since I have had a lot of engorgement I needed to pump from the breast that was not being fed from.

02-Black-front Being able to do that hands free was so nice. I also had to pump frequently and hands free pumping allowed me to massage my breasts while I pumped to relieve the pain and the pressure that I felt. The material is also very soft and not binding at all!


Simple Wishes B3 - Nursing and PumpingReview by: Monica Black from Belly View Ultrasound in McAllen, TX.

For more information on Simple Wishes visit!

Another GREAT product RGV Tots-Tweens found at the ABC Kids Expo!






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Nuzzle Hug my New BFF

NuzzleHUG large taupe D-H cup

Nuzzle Hug I love this product. I dealt with major engorgement issues so I used it both hot and cold. Being able to remove the individual breast pads helped too so I could have one in the freezer if I needed it. The size of each pad is really perfect too, I had engorgement up into my underarms and the pads gave great coverage.

NuzzlePODs worn123 RBG-01

The warmth on my neck was also such a relief!  You forget how heavy a newborn can seem in those first few days of constant carrying.  Cuddled up on the sofa with a cold glass of water and the nuzzle hug warming my breasts and neck, best feeling of relief!  Overall it’s a great product!

Review by: Monica Black

BellyView 4d/3d Ultrasound


1NuzzleHUG_Taupe Large D-H cup2

Winner of the 2014  Preferred Choice and  Top Choice Award!!!

Nuzzle Hug is available at Pricing starts at 49.99.

Another great product we found at the ABC Kids Expo!


Lulu Hanke


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Milkies Nipple Nurture Balm!!!


Milkies Nipple Nurture Balm =  LIFESAVER!  I was skeptical because the consistency is different than traditional lanolin. It’s thinner so I wasn’t sure it would create a good barrier but it really does. It’s not sticky at all. I really feel the healing properties. Since I was very engorged I was constantly feeding then pumping then feeding then pumping. My nipples started to feel irritated but the product really helped soothe them and heel them.  I never dealt with any cracking or bleeding so I don’t know how effective it is with open sores (unless the product helped prevent that issue). It smells like olive oil which seemed odd at first, but I got used to it right away. Baby never once noticed it or had any aversion to it!

Monica Black
Belly View 4d/3d Ultrasound

Nipple Nurture Balm is $9.95 available at

Recommended Use: Apply to the entire nipple after each feeding.

• 1.5 oz in each container, generally a 1-month supply.

• Soothes, protects, and heals sore and cracked nipples.

• Made from organic ingredients, safe for both mother and baby. Does not need to be washed off before feedings.

• Lanolin-free with no harsh chemicals or additives.

• Recommended by lactation professionals

• Contains no animal products and is not tested on animals

• Alleviates breastfeeding discomfort so you can better connect with your baby

Lulu Hanke

Enter to win 3 Milkies Products! Winner will receive Nipple Nuture Balm, Milkies Freeze and Milkies Milk -Saver!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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