Hank Warren

Hank was born via c-section in April. His brother’s birth was full of excitement due to an emergency c-section. Hank’s was much more laid back. The section was planned and we all had the dates written in our calendars. I arrived at the hospital just a few minutes before he was born. Tori had asked ahead of time if I would be allowed in the operating room and standard procedure said no. Once she had some time to recover I headed back to get photos of Hank meeting all of his family. These are a few of my favorites from the day!

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The Birth In Photos

After nearly 6 months it is probably time to share my birth photos. If you want to read the story you can do that here. I think these speak for themselves. Also, I narrowed this down from around 200 photos so just know there are a lot more of these. I’m so glad we had a photographer. While I fully understand it is not for everyone, I don’t regret it for one second. My photographer was Fallon Curry and she was awesome. Click HERE to check her out!







































The Birth Story

This is a birth story so just know it will contain things that pertain to birth….it’s also a tad on the long side.



Well it was a good thing I posted my 40 week update on my due date because this girl didn’t make us wait too much longer! Friday, July 10, Joe and I went out for sushi, a walk around Cabela’s and Target, and then home for a movie. Saturday, the 11th, my mom came and helped clean my house. Then we went to the mall with my friend Kim and her girls to do some walking. All that did was tire me out! I woke up a few times in the night not feeling very well. After a few trips to the bathroom I did remember that your body cleaning itself out can be a sign that labor is coming. I figured I just ate too much Chick-Fil-A and pizza that day! I woke up Sunday morning, the 12th,  still feeling pretty off and just not very good. I had plans to eat lunch with Kim and her girls and I needed to go to the grocery store. I almost canceled but went anyway. It was so hot outside and getting groceries was miserable. I got home, got them put away and laid down to take a nap. This is where the fun begins…

I woke up around 4:15 when I felt something pop. It was the strangest feeling. I immediately sat up and felt a small gush of fluid. I wasn’t for sure that it was my water but I was fairly certain I hadn’t peed my pants. I wasn’t having any contractions so we decided to just wait a little bit and see what happened. We went ahead and gathered the last minute items and called our family to let them know that we thought we were having a baby! After about an hour and a half the contractions started. Initially, they weren’t too bad and breathing through them was going ok. We watched 4 episodes of Gilmore Girls before the tv needed to be turned off. I also ate a piece of pizza and a granola bar (BIG MISTAKE).


Around 9:30 we decided we were ready to head in. My contractions were about 3 minutes apart and lasting a minute long. The short 10 minute drive to the hospital felt a lot longer than it really was. We got to the hospital, got all checked in, and admitted to triage. They had to make sure it was really my water that had broken (it was) and needed to monitory my contractions and have us answer a bunch of questions before moving me to my room. At this point I was only a 3 and as soon as they had me lay down those contractions got so much worse. As we were moving to the labor and delivery room I told Joe that I wasn’t sure if I could do it. I knew I had a long ways to go still. He reminded me that I could do this and that he wasn’t supposed to let me change my mind. We got settled in the room and I asked if I could get up and move around. The baby’s heart rate was deceling a little with some of the contractions so they needed me on the monitor. Around 11:30 I looked at Joe and said “Please, I can’t do this. It’s too much.” And that is how I ended up getting the epidural. He was very quick to make sure that I wasn’t going to beat myself up later for getting one and I assured him that I would not regret it. (I don’t, not for one second) It took about 30 minutes and the anesthesiologist came in. He was 76 years old, has been an anesthesiologist for 40 years, and has done around 3,000 epidurals. The man was amazing. He was so fast and I really didn’t feel a thing. Before I knew it, my belly was numb and all I could feel was some pressure with big contractions. At this point I was a 5 and 90% effaced.

Once you get an epidural, they have you lay down and on your side. This is great except that it meant my heart burn was aggravated by laying mostly flat. The nurse brought me some Maalox and to sleep I went. About 2 hours later I woke up and knew I was going to be sick. I couldn’t even reach for the bucket fast enough so I threw up all over myself, the sheets, and the pillow case. Those sweet nurses came in right away and got me all cleaned up. They checked me again and I was an 8-9! We were getting so close! I got a little more sleep and then it was time to start pushing. My epidural was working great. I couldn’t feel the contraction but I could feel the pressure intensify so I knew she was moving down and it also helped me to know where to push. After just a few contractions my nurse said it was time to call the Dr. About 10 minutes later he was there. He let me know that her heart rate was deceling with each contraction still and we needed to get her out. He said if I wasn’t pushing effectively on the next contraction then we would need to consider assistance – basically the vacuum. That was all it took for me to really push with everything I had. One contraction later I was definitely feeling the ring of fire. Holy smokes, that is some serious burn and I was pretty numb! The next contraction we had a baby! I only pushed for 20 minutes. Rebecca Ann was born at 6:05 AM on July 13, 2015.


Joe cut the cord and she was placed on my chest. She had a pretty short cord which explains why she was having a little trouble during those last contractions. We spent almost 2 hours with her doing skin-to-skin and breastfeeding. After that, she went to the nursery with Joe and he gave her a bath and got her dressed. They did the eye ointment, vitamin K shot and the Hepatitis shot. These pictures are some of my favorites. Joe is beaming!IMG_0781




I’ve seen some of my birth photographer’s photos and they are amazing, I can’t wait to share them!


40 Weeks

40 Weeks

40 Weeks!!!!!!! Happy Due Date Baby Girl!!!!!!! (You should all be impressed that I finally posted the weekly post on the day I was supposed to)
Funny Story: I peed my pants this week. I sneezed and couldn’t help it. Although at first I thought, “oh my gosh did my water break?!?!?!” HA! Of course not crazy lady! You peed your pants! I got a good laugh out of it. At my last Dr. appt he said I am 1-2 cm dilated, 70% effaced, and my cervix is very soft. He also said that she is a -3 station, so still a little high but is applying good pressure. I haven’t had any contractions just some Braxton Hicks and some minor cramping. I say minor because I’ve had menstrual cramps that are so much worse than what I’ve had, they almost don’t count. This week has definitely been a slow week. It is definitely challenging getting up and getting ready for work every day. My hips make it a little difficult to move around and getting in and out of my car actually hurts a little.

I haven’t mentioned it but I’ve been taking Evening Primrose Oil and Red Raspberry Leaf pills and tea. The Evening Primrose Oil is good to help soften the cervix and helps keep skin elastic so it is supposed to help with tearing. I’ve been taking it orally for a few weeks so it could be what has helped me efface or it could just be all the pressure! Some women pop a hole in the pill and insert it…..you know where, but I’m not that brave. The Red Raspberry Leaf helps to strengthen the muscles of your uterus, making contractions more effective. The pills aren’t as effective as the tea and I’ve been very careful to stay inside the recommended amounts.  Neither will induce labor but help prepare your body. Also….I’m not a doctor so please don’t take anything without checking with your midwife or doctor first!

Tonight we are headed out on a date! Sushi for dinner (the pregnancy approved sushi of course), a walk around Cabela’s and Target, and I bet I can talk sugar boy into some ice cream or something. You will all be pleased to know that last night we settled on her name….you just have to wait until she’s born to find out what it is! I will leave you with a picture of Joe and I at 39 weeks and 2 days.


How far along: 40 Weeks

Total weight gain: 32 pounds or so….I haven’t weighed since my appt on Tuesday

Maternity clothes: Oh yes….and even those are getting small

Stretch marks: A few on my hips and some on my belly that popped up in the last few weeks

Sleep: Some nights it is really bad and some nights it is better. It always hurts to roll over and my hips hurt when I wake up but the nights that I only have to get up twice to go the bathroom are good!

Best moment of this week: Hitting my due date! As excited as I am for her to be here, I am really excited that I made it all 40 weeks!

Miss anything: Moving without pain

Movement: She likes to stick her little behind out. Talk about pressure! It makes my skin feel thin and it looks so funny! Most of her movement now seems to be pushing downward but I love feeling her move.

Food cravings: Nothing crazy, even the stuff that I’ve been wanting has started to not sound as good anymore.

Anything making you queasy or sick: No

Have you started to show yet: Most people don’t look at my face anymore so I’m saying yes

Gender: Girl…and she has a name. But no, I’m not telling! Now it is just fun to keep it a secret.

Labor signs: I am 1-2 cm still but 70% effaced. Dr. T said that my cervix is very soft and she’s at a -3 station. So still a little high but he could tell she is applying good pressure. I’ve had some really light cramping and Braxton hicks but no real contractions and nothing that hurts.

Belly button in or out: I’m saying out because you can see it through my shirt now.

Wedding rings on or off: Off

Looking forward to: Meeting this baby!


38/39 Weeks

I’m not one to post a picture in a swimsuit….but the belly makes everything ok!! I was 39 weeks and 1 day here.

Week 38 got away from me so I’m grouping it in with week 39. This last week was definitely one that included some pampering. I got a pedicure so my toes and feet are all pretty again. Joe got me a prenatal massage. I had never had a massage before but my goodness it was wonderful. All pregnant women need to get one. I walked out of there and my hips didn’t hurt and the pressure on my tailbone was much less. I even slept for a 5 hour stretch that night! Talk about relaxing. The last 2 weekends I’ve been able to get some good pool floating time in as well. That helps my swollen feet so much. They are almost back down to normal! At my last appt my dr said that I am dilated to a 1, my cervix is much softer but still slightly posterior, and she is much lower than she was. All good signs! I’m a bit curious if any of that will change this week. The pressure is definitely picking up in frequency so I’m hoping that is doing something. No contractions yet but I have had a few Braxton Hicks that stopped me. They don’t hurt but my belly was so tight! The current prediction from just about everyone is that we will have a baby this week. I’m guessing she is going to hang out a little while longer. I bet I get to my due date of Friday. Either way….we are definitely anxious and excited to meet our girl!


How far along: 39 Weeks

Total weight gain: 31 pounds

Maternity clothes: Oh yes….and some of those shirts are starting to get a little short and the stretchy band pants are not the most comfortable thing anymore either. I love my black and white maxi skirt. If I could wear it every day I could (and it isn’t maternity….woah!)!

Stretch marks: The ones on my hips have been joined by several on my belly. All of the sudden, there they were!

Sleep: Sleep is hit or miss. Some nights it isn’t bad but some nights it is just not good. Poor Joe, he has spent several nights on the couch because I’m snoring so loudly he can’t sleep!!

Best moment of this week: Pedicure, Prenatal massage, and floating in the pool are all tying for 1st right now.

Miss anything: Walking without pain in my tailbone/hips

Movement: She tries to roll around in there but she’s taking up all of the space!

Food cravings: Nothing new right now. If anything, I’m finding it harder to know what I want to eat.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nothing particular

Have you started to show yet: The belly is large and in charge!

Gender: Girl! No, still no first name….

Labor signs: I’ve had some really light cramping but nothing that is painful or even uncomfortable. She has definitely been applying the pressure this week as well. I had 2 definite Braxton hicks when I was in Target one day. I’m dilated to a 1 and my cervix is soft but still slightly posterior.

Belly button in or out: I would say it is poking out but not a whole lot.

Wedding rings on or off: Off

Looking forward to: My next appt on Tuesday! Hoping I’ve made some kind of progress and Friday is my due date!! I can’t wait to know we have made it all 40 weeks!


Hospital Bag – The Overpacked Edition


You don’t even have to tell me. I already know. I’m taking way too much stuff with me to the hospital. Guess what? I don’t care. This is the first time we are doing this whole baby thing and being over prepared is what I’m good at. So here is what I’m taking…

My Bag – My bag is the Vera Bradley Large Duffel in Canterberry Magenta. You can find it here.




  • Deoderant
  • Contact Solution
  • Extra Contact Case
  • Toothbrush (1 for each of us)
  • Toothpaste
  • Shampoo & Conditioner
  • Facewash
  • Makeup Remover Wipes
  • Eye Makeup Remover rounds (that waterproof mascara can be tough)
  • Body Was
  • Lotion
  • Body Spray
  • Comb
  • Hair ties
  • Headband
  • Chapstick
  • Deoderant for Joe
  • Last minute items to grab: makeup bag, glasses, blow dryer, and brush




  • 2 pair of sweatpants – 1 black and 1 navy blue
  • 1 pair of maternity legging to wear home
  • 2 nursing camis
  • 1 nursing tank top to wear home
  • 2 pairs of socks
  • 3 nursing bras – 1 sleep bra, 1 sports bra, and 1 regular bra…..I didn’t know what kind would be easiest
  • Robe
  • Flip Flop slippers (not sure what happened to the picture of these but you can imagine, a pair of house shoes that are flip flops)
  • For Joe I have packed a pair of sweatpants, 2 pairs of socks, underwear, and some t-shirts. We will need to grab him a pair of jeans at the last minute. OR he can come home and change. We only live 10 minutes from the hospital.


DSC_5627I’ve packed some snacks as well. My birth class teacher suggested hard candies for labor. So I got a bag of Dum-Dums. She said something with a stick is easier. Joe likes granola bars and I like animal crackers. This way, if she is born in the middle of the night and there is no food available we will have some snacks.

The Baby Bag – My baby bag is the Petunia Pickle Bottom Sashay Satchel in Central Park North Stop. You can find it here.


The Baby Goodies






  • 2 burp cloths
  • Nursing cover (Probably won’t use this one – I’ll just kick people out if she needs to feed but again, just in case)
  • Lanolin
  • 2 swaddle wraps
  • 1 Aden & Anais blanket
  • 2 Newborn outfits (I can’t decide which one she needs to come home in) and 1 0-3 Month outfit in case she is big
  • 2 hats
  • 2 bows – Whichever outfit she comes home in will decide the bow
  • Boppy
  • Baby Book for footprints
  • Folder for paperwork – This currently contains all of my work FMLA/Short Term Disability paperwork, Insurance Paperwork, and the Registration paperwork.

Last Minute Items

  • Insurance Card – It is always in my wallet
  • Birth Ball – I don’t think our hospital has them in the rooms so ours will be thrown in the car just in case
  • Phone Chargers
  • My camera
  • Joe’s GoPro

And that is what will be making the long (a whole 10 minutes) trek to the hospital with us. The carseat is already in the car and other than us settling on a name, we are ready to bring her home!

37 Weeks

37 Weeks

37 Weeks and growing like a weed! My belly gets a little bigger each day I think. I am officially Pre-Term. Some doctors consider 37 weeks full term but recently there has been a switch in that way of thinking. 37-39 is now Pre-Term, 39-42 is Term, and 42+ is Post Term.

Today at my appt my dr said unless I’m hiding this baby he doesn’t think she will be a huge baby. We will see. My feet are definitely swelling each day so I’m trying to drink lots and lots of water and keep them up. I’ve scheduled a pedicure for Saturday and a prenatal massage (thanks Joe!!) for a week from tomorrow (Wednesday). I can’t wait for both! She better stay in long enough for those to both happen! I will have my next appt on Tuesday. I think it will just be a regular check again, so listen to the heartbeat and measure the belly. Last week he told me he wouldn’t check me again until I’m 39 weeks which is fine with me. Dilation doesn’t really mean much of anything unless you are in active labor.

We were able to go to St. Louis over the weekend and see Joe’s family, including his sister and our nephew! Jack is getting so big and is so much fun! I was even able to remember to take a few pictures…


I just want to kiss those cheeks!


Joe’s Grandad is having a quadruple bypass so all went up to see him.


Joe got some baby practice in this weekend


A St. Louis trip must…Imo’s Pizza!

How far along: 37 Weeks

Total weight gain: 28 pounds

Maternity clothes: Oh yes….and some of those shirts are starting to get a little short and the stretchy band pants are not the most comfortable thing anymore either. I love my black and white maxi skirt. If I could wear it every day I could (and it isn’t maternity….woah!)!

Stretch marks: Still just the few on my hips. Not too bad.

Sleep: Sleep is still not good. My hips hurt and laying on my side aggravates it. Thankfully, someone mentioned Pepcid AC to me for the heartburn and it has helped so much!!

Best moment of this week: Getting to go to St. Louis and see family!

Miss anything: Walking without pain in my tailbone/hips

Movement: She tries to roll around in there but she’s taking up all of the space!

Food cravings: The past 2 weeks I have really liked chocolate donuts. And not ones from a bakery….the kind that come in a bag or a box from the grocery store. The ones you would buy at a gas station. I haven’t ever been a huge fan of them but they are so good right now!!

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nothing particular

Have you started to show yet: Today I got told that I look really big. The belly is definitely in charge now.

Gender: Girl! No, still no first name….

Labor signs: I’ve had some really light cramping but nothing that is painful or even uncomfortable. Last week my Dr told me I’m about a fingertip dilated so nothing going on there either. He will check me again at 39 weeks!

Belly button in or out: I would say it is poking out but not a whole lot.

Wedding rings on or off: Off

Looking forward to: A pedicure on Saturday and a prenatal massage a week from Wednesday!

P.S. I’m being honest when I say I’m uncomfortable but that does not mean that I want her to come now. I would rather be uncomfortable for a few more weeks and have a healthy, fully cooked baby. I don’t think I gave that impression on my lat update. I had a lot of people telling me to be patient and I really am but this is a pregnancy update so I wanted to be totally transparent.

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