Tuesday, November 3

Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook {a Review}

First off, I thoroughly enjoyed the original The Trim Healthy Mama and most of what they said I could completely get behind {I just don't care for Stevia}. The Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook is exanded with tons more recipes and ideas of healthy eating! This book does work as a stand alone to the original, but if you read the original first it will greatly improve your understanding of the whole system.

The book starts with explaining, briefly, what the basics are of following their plan. Goes into what gadgets and special things you need to have and keep in mind, then follows very quickly into the recipes. I love cookbooks. I love all the pictures of food. This book has beautiful pictures all through out, with really great descriptions and directions on how to prepare the dishes.

Looking through the book every single recipe was something that sounded delicious! So much variety and possibilities for someone who is looking to lose weight, while still feeding their family food that their kids are actually going to eat! 

If you're someone who dabbled in the THMP {Trim Healthy Mama Plan} before, this might be just what you need to get back in the saddle. If you're not, it's a great place to start with healthy meals for ANY family {regardless of whether you want to lose weight or not}.

I received my copy of this book for free in exchange for my honest review: You can read my disclosure policy here.

Wednesday, September 16

3 Months Old

It’s here…one of the first milestone ages, in my opinion. Three months always marks the beginning of a new baby-phase….they’re out of the newborn and firmly planted on the brink of greatness! Rolling over, sitting up, teething, and grabbing things are on the horizon! Big things ahead!

There aren’t many words for this little boy…he’s incredible in every way possible.


*Weighing in at almost 15 lbs –Avie was the biggest at 13.5 lbs at 3 months {you can find the boys’ 3 month post here}
*Able to hold up his head
*Sleeps like a champ…naps on and off all day, then sleeps from 9/10pm-7/8am….incredible!
*Immediately goes to sleep during tummy time
*Starting to discover his hands
*Officially a thumb sucker…he hasn’t had a “Georgie” in 2 weeks YAY!
*Loves to “stand” in your lap
*He’s maxing out the 3 month clothes and is getting moved to the 6 month this weekend


Here’s all of my boys at 3 months {Clockwise from top left: James, Peter, Henry, Peter}

My Boys at 3 Months

Tuesday, September 15

God Gave Us Sleep {a Review}

Have you ever read any of the God Gave Us... series by Lisa Tawn Bergren? If haven't, you should, they are fantastic! We have several of her books, the first that we had was God Gave Us You, which I bought after Avie was born. They are some of the kids favorite books! When I saw the chance to review a new one in the series I jumped at it!Untitled

God Gave Us Sleep, because what parent doesn't want their child to realize the blessing to be had in sleep?! I know I d0. Just the other day James was telling me that I didn't have to go to bed that night, that I could spend the night on the couch and not sleep. In his words, it was a special-treat. In my mind, it was torture!

This book leaves nothing wanting. The illustrations are adorable as always, as are the animals and the story. My favorite parts of the story were that it talked about what happens when we can’t sleep {we get grumpy the next day} and what to do when we have Scary-Bad dreams, always point little readers to God and His provisions for us!

God Gave Us Sleep is another score in our house!

*I did receive this book for free from bloggingforbooks.com; however, the opinions expressed are entirely my own. You can find my disclosure policy here.

Thursday, September 10

Fair Season: What exactly is that?! {part 2}

If you didn’t read the first part about what the lead-up to fair week is you can find that post HERE.Fair Season What Exactly Is that!

The craziness of the weeks before the fair intensify ten-fold the week OF the fair.

What actually happens during fair-week?

We start serving food on Sunday, the fair doesn’t officially open until Monday, but it gives you a chance to work out any kinks. In the mornings Matt usually leaves the house by 7 to run errands. He goes any gets any food, drinks, etc that he may need, if he didn’t the night before. He spends all day working right alongside our staff. We start serving around 10:30am and are open until 10:30pm, sometimes earlier or later depending on what events are scheduled at the fairgrounds at night. And, of course, there is always laundry to get done.

Every day they serve a full menu: Hamburgers/Cheeseburgers, Hot Dogs, Sausage, Fried Sea Food, Local Corn on the Cob and Salt Potatoes, Fruit Salad, Fries, Onion Rings, Pizza Rolls, Fish Sandwiches, Nachos, and drinks. When I say it is a full restaurant…it is a FULL RESTAURANT. We have a complete menu.IMG_2491

Once they close up, all of the equipment gets cleaned, things get restocked, employees leave, then Matt runs a few errands {he doesn’t have time to do them all in the morning or after work}, comes home, showers, and then does the bookkeeping. Put on repeat, ad nauseum for all week long, for 7 days.  Matt usually doesn’t get in bed until 2 or 3am, then is back up and out the door by 7am. I think he makes up for the lack of sleep the rest of the year.

The last day of the fair is a Saturday. Sunday is spent scrubbing all the equipment, dealing with all the leftover food/drinks/etc, unassembling everything, and putting it all away until next year. Tear down goes a lot faster than setup. The following week I spend doing whatever laundry didn’t get done on a daily basis…all the tablecloths, tees, kitchen towels etc. Then there is payroll to be done, taxes, and all of the lovely bills and paperwork that need to be taken care of.

This year during fair-week my in laws asked me if I could do peaches for their stand. Their dessert item is fresh homemade peach shortcake…and it really is fresh and it really is homemade. Between everything else going on I spent time blanching and peeling peaches for shortcake. My sister and I prepared around 12 half-bushels of peaches; which meant we blanched them, peeled them, and sliced them up into a simple syrup and delivered the days peaches every morning….with 6 kids between us. I did share a bit about peaches on Instagram and Periscope {you can find the periscope videos here}.


In years past the kids and I would go over to the fairgrounds at least once a day to visit Daddy and eat. This year I just didn’t have it in me to push the quad stroller all around with a 13lb baby strapped to my chest. In the afternoon/evenings there are so many people there that it’s hard to walk around with a stroller, I much prefer the mornings. For most of the week we headed to the pool in the afternoon instead of the fairgrounds.

That’s pretty much what fair season and fair week are for us: A lot of work, a lot of stress, and it’s only by God’s goodness and grace we actually get through it. This was the first year I actually made it all the way through the whole thing without having a stressed out crying jag.


Until next year…..

Tuesday, September 8

Chocolate Zucchini Brownie Cake

You can find this post on my new site, JessicaMWhite.com; Click HERE.

Thursday, September 3

Fair Season: What exactly is that?

I’ve had a couple of people ask me just what is “Fair Season”; I often forget that most peoples lives aren’t lived for a huge event that becomes all consuming once a year. For us, that is “Fair Season”.

Matt and I both have very similar family backgrounds in this respect. I grew up doing farmers’ markets and festivals with my parents…sometimes it was selling the sausage and meats my dad made {he is a wurstmacher* by trade} so people could go home and cook it and sometimes it was selling them cooked to lots of hungry people. Matt’s family has had a concession stand at the county fair for almost 30 years…selling hamburgers, hot dogs, and such faire. Both of us wanted to get away from all of it and somehow we’re back in it on our own. Funny how life works.

Fair Season What Exactly Is that!

It’s a hard business. It’s a lot of work. And no one sees any of it, except getting their food. That’s how the food industry is…no one sees anything but the end product and never truly appreciates what they’re eating until they do {for those who were wondering…it doesn’t just magically appear on your plate}.

So what does fair season entail for us? In June we start with calling all of the people who worked for us the year before, anywhere from 10-15 people, to find out whether they’re wanting to work this fair or not. Sometimes everyone comes back and all things are in order quickly, sometimes we’re scrambling up until the week before to find people, and sometimes we have people who walk off the job on the first day {those are always the best!}.

My birthday {July 21st} is usually the last hurrah, the end of our summer. Matt and I try and make a point of going out for my birthday, because it is really the last time that we will have time together before the end of August.

Pretty quickly Matt’s weekends are spent driving to the nearest city {an hour one way} that has a wholesale club. There are numerous trips back and forth getting soda, paper products, and countless other things that are needed to actually setup and run the stand. There’s equipment that needs to be looked over and checked out {large 4’ commercial griddles, steam tables, several fryers, gas lines, power lines,  counters, tables, sinks and plumbing}. There are orders that need to be placed with vendors who supply us with materials {shirts for employees, food products to sell etc}. And all of this happens while Matt is still working his other job, which is also in its busy season.

The two weekends before fair week Matt is busy with getting things setup. All of the equipment has to be brought in, setup, leveled, made sure that it works and is ready to rock n’ roll. It all takes time. It all requires attention to detail. This is all the stuff that no one sees. Most people have no concept of what goes in to setting up a full fledged RESTAURANT in the middle of a field for a week.


Hopefully everything is setup in working order before the first day of the fair. Sometimes a piece of equipment has an issue and you have to scramble to fix it or replace it. Just this year we had a freezer go out {we have 3 of them and a walk in}, Matt had to clean everything out of our home chest freezer to use it at the fair. Other years it’s been a gas line or a burner for a grill or fryer. There’s always something, the problem is…you don’t know what, so you can’t prepare for it.

In the days before the fair Matt receives in all of our food orders to our big walk-in freezer/fridge, he also handles his father’s and a couple of other customers. Since Matt’s job with my parents is food provisions for restaurants and delis he has several customers for that business that have orders specifically for fair week, which creates that much more work.

The day before the fair Matt starts packing the freezers and fridges at the fair with the food he will need. Unfortunately, there isn’t enough room to house everything we will need for the entire week, so every night, after working all day, he has to go and bring more food back down to the fairgrounds.


Next time I’ll share what exactly fair week is like…

*What’s a wurstmacher? It’s a German word for someone who is a true artisan when it comes to sausage making. We’re not talking Johnsonville Brats, but someone who has honed their craftsmanship of making sausage. These are not mass-produced sausages, but sausages that are made in small batches, created entirely by hand.

Tuesday, September 1

Animal Adventures!

This past Sunday we headed out on an adventure, to a local park called “Animal Adventures”…it’s a small zoo, at which you can feed most of the animals. It was so much fun! We were there when they opened, which was great! There wasn’t a ton of people, the staff was awesomely informative and helpful, and we all had a lot of fun!


All of the zookeepers were willing to talk and answer any questions.


When we were learning about the camel, Avelyn was VERY informed {via Wild Kratts} and could answer all of the questions the zookeeper asked…very much like her daddy.IMG_5710

They even let the kids feed the animals. {The whole zoo is outfitted with feeding tubes for the animals you can’t reach and you can feed the giraffe and the camel carrot sticks.}



The kids were so brave! I was a bit nervous about how they would feel around the animals, but you can tell from Henry’s face that he had a blast!


I’m not too fond of zoos, I really don’t like the idea of animals in captivity. We asked the zookeepers where they got their animals from and they were very open to talking about it: Some of the animals are donated, particularly the birds and more domesticated animals, by people had them as pets and didn’t know what they were getting themselves into, some of the animals are from other zoos, and some are from DEC raids {ie. people who had animals that are not permitted as pets…for example, lemurs}. All of the animals looked well cared for and the entire place was impressively clean.

Sunday, August 16

Two Months Old

Last week Peter had his two month well baby visit and I was curious to see how much he’d gained…he didn’t disappoint!

*He weighed in at 12lbs
*Measured right around 23 3/4”  {so far he’s a touch bigger than Avie was at 2 months old}
*Holding his head up
*Giving lots of smiles
*Starting to chuckle when he’s smiling
*Sleeps INCREDIBLY well! He takes a bottle in the late evening, between 8 and 9, then passes out until 3 or 4 am. Either he’s a really good sleeper or I’m used to other kids that just don’t sleep {might be a bit of both}.
*People are always commenting on his hair…it’s crazy {he has way more than even Ave had at 2 months}.
*Fitting into 3 months clothing
*He loves sucking on his fist…I’m really hoping that we can avoid a pacifier.
*The kids are thoroughly enamored with him and are constantly in his face…he’s going to have to be the toughest one in the bunch!


Peter 2 Months Old

Monday, August 10

Cast Iron Convert

One of the most exciting things for me when my husband and I got engaged was creating our registry: LOVED IT! Both of us moved from our parents’ homes straight into our first home together, so we needed everything. I was beyond ecstatic to register for pots and pans…specifically Calphalon pots and pans: 10 years later those pots and pans are still going strong and I do love them!


A couple of times Matt tried to convince me of using cast iron cookware, by bringing out his rusty old pan from his boy scouting days. I wasn’t too thrilled by it and pretty much refused to use it. Then last year we moved in with the in laws and I was forced to use cast iron, all of our stuff was in storage. My mother in law had only recently started to use cast iron again…so I went with it.

Cast Iron Convert Switching to Cast Iron When You're Scared to Death of It at LifeintheWhiteHouse.com

It was heavy. It was huge. I was scared to death to drop it on my foot or in the sink or on the counter tops {they have granite}. It just scared me. I was afraid of not washing it right, not cooking with it right. You name a potential reason to not like it and that was my excuse.

Then Matt requested a dutch oven for his birthday {he’s so sneaky about how he goes about converting me on things!} and he wanted to try making our own tortillas, so we needed a comal. Then it was a large sauté pan that we needed to do veggies in the oven. Before I knew it we had 4 different cast iron pieces. And here I am…reluctant to admit I love our cast iron cookware!

That’s right. I’m not afraid of it anymore, because it’s pretty much indestructible! Although, I do get nervous with it around my countertops and sink {it is HEAVY}. The only time I pull out one of my Calphalon pans is when I’m making crepes, because the cast iron really is too heavy for all that wrist work, or large batches of liquid.

It’s a worthwhile investment that seriously doesn’t cost much and will last forever. I recently saw a post on facebook from someone who had just inherited her grandmother’s cast iron….it was over a 100 years old! I’m pretty sure no stainless steel cookware will last that long!

Why do I like it now?

I like that it’s indestructible, that if I burn something I don’t have to spend HOURS AND HOURS scrubbing something clean, because chances are it’s not all cooked into it.

It’s easy to clean…seriously…I just wipe it out with some hot water and I’m done.

It’s convenient! I can take things from the stove to the oven and back without thinking or worrying about ruining a pan. It makes it so much easier when I want to sauté things and then brown them in the oven or roast it in the oven and then make a gravy on the stop top.

Here is some other great information about using and caring for cast iron:

How to Season Cast Iron
12 White-Hot Ways to Use Cast Iron Everyday
Cooking with Cast Iron –How and Why to Get Started
5 Reasons to Get Cooking with Cast Iron

What do you use to cook with?

*This post may contain affiliate links, you can read my disclosure policy here.

Monday, August 3

The Berenstain Bears’ Harvest Festival {a Review}

Another super sweet Berenstain Bears story!

Synopsis from Amazon:
Autumn is a beautiful time of year, and the folks of Bear Country are looking forward to everything the season brings. So when the Chapel in the Woods holds its first ever Harvest Festival, people gather at Farmer Ben’s for a wonderful time of family, friends, fun, and praising God for his gifts.

The kids love all of the Berenstain Bears…I, however, am a bit more discerning about them. They all gave the book two paws up. I liked it too, but felt it wasn’t one of the better, more developed story lines from the Berenstain Bears series. The pictures are beautiful, how could they not be with the fall colors, and the story follows  the bear family through all the joys of fall….apple picking, pumpkin pie, time with family and friends, the bounty of God’s blessings.

Even though it’s still Summer here, I am beyond looking forward to Fall. This book was just enough to take the edge off of my wishing for Fall. The book releases today and is available on Amazon.com for $2.00!



Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

This post contains affiliate links: You can read my disclosure policy here.

Friday, July 31

Longing for Paris {a Review}

I have to admit…I have always had an inkling to hop on a plane and disappear to another place. As a mom, those days happen far more often and the dream even less likely to happen than ever before. It’s just not possible, but what am I supposed to do about that longing? How am I supposed to find peace and contentment amongst the mess and noise of 5 kids, when I just want to disappear?


Sarah Mae has a new book, Longing for Paris: One Woman’s Search for Joy, Beauty, and Adventure—Right Where She Is, that addresses these very questions. And let me tell you….it’s a good one! I was fortunate to land a spot in Sarah Mae’s launch group, so I get a PDF copy for free prior to the release {but it was so good that I bought myself a paper copy to share with others…it will be here on August 4th, the day it releases}.

I felt like every page had such truth and wisdom in it, a new way to think about what I felt and why. How about this? Our longings for Joy, Beauty and Adventure are completely natural, God given even, because we are not meant to find contentment in this world, we are meant for so much more, we are meant for Heaven. We were created in the image of a God who created all of the beauty that we can experience in this world.


Sarah Mae talks about how we can go about finding the beauty and adventure that we long for in this world, even as mothers and wives and women who have constant demands on our time and energy. More important than satiating our own hunger for more, Sarah Mae talks about the importance of stirring that hunger in our own children, and how, through words of wisdom from Sally Clarkson, we can.

She talks about how we can get caught up in looking for the thing that will fill that longing, letting it consume our time, all of which never will. There is only one way that longing with ever be satisfied…

“…doing too much of anything at the expense of getting quiet with the One who knows the depths of your soul is to forfeit the gospel. It is to forfeit the beauty we have before us and in us and that, when cultivated through the work of the Holy Spirit, will shine out of us.” pg 72

If you’re completely content in your life and have no longings for anything beyond the immediate, then this book isn’t for you, but if you do….THIS BOOK IS FOR YOU! This book is for anyone who feels trapped and needs to breath, who wants to climb to the mountain tops, to revel in the adventure and the glory of God’s world. Who feels like there has to be something MORE to this life than what we experience ever day.

“I’m not going to neglect my kids. And because of my small capacity, I can’t go full steam ahead with my ideas and dreams. But I’m sure not going to kill my dreams, because that would be denying what God put in me.” pg 148

The best part is…right now the book is only $7.91 on Amazon.com, and if you take my survey {which closes tomorrow morning} you could even manage to get it for FREE if you win the amazon.com gift card.

You can find out more about Longing For Paris at LongingForParis.com

*This post does contain affiliate links, you can read my disclosure policy here. I received a PDF copy of Longing for Paris in exchange for my review of the book, the opinions expressed are solely my own.

Tuesday, July 21

Happy Birthday to Me!

Do you have a song? A song, that to you, or other’s is just YOU? I do.

A long time ago, I found a group called Gaelic Storm {they were the band that played in the movie Titanic, the whole below deck scene with Rose dancing and doing her ballet moves} and loved them ever since.

I quickly discovered a song of their’s that I loved…that was just…ME!
Pina Colada in a Pint Glass!

So why do I love this song? Why is it me?

It’s just a simple girl looking for the simple pleasures in life, while working hard to pay for her dream. It’s my absolute favoritest song, because it is fun! It’s Irish, it’s a pina colada, it’s a pint glass, it’s a beach, and I love it! There’s no pretention, no high-falutin’ ideas. It’s just fun…good old fashioned, girl next door, fun.

Pina Colada

Why am I sharing this, today? Because it’s my birthday, and quite frankly the idea of a pina colada in a pint glass sitting on milk white sand and looking at gin-clear water sounds like absolute perfection!

What’s your song?

Sunday, July 19

One Year Later

A year ago this past weekend we moved back home, after being gone for almost 4 months, during renovations. I remember how good it was to be HOME, there truly is no place like it, but I hadn’t quite remembered everything, until my TimeHop showed up this morning with this POST…where I shared about my tears shed over a children’s book.

This past year has been busy…we accomplished a lot, but not nearly as much as I had hoped {there is this unfortunate reality of money, which becomes a particular nuisance when it involves MAJOR renovations….it doesn’t last as long or go as far as one thinks it should}.

What did we accomplish this year?

We finished our kitchen {for the most part—still some paint touch ups to do}

We finished our mudroom {for the most part—still have to nail the moldings in place}

We finished the girls’ room {but it’s different even now}

and we had a baby {that last one kind of prevented me from getting more stuff done around here and probably will continue to do so, but that’s ok…babies don’t keep!}

I’d love to say that this year we’ll get everything finished, but I know better. I do hope that we at least finish he myriad of little projects that are around here: Grass in the yard, the bathroom and the bedroom finished {they literally need paint touch ups and décor}, the decks painted {we’ve had the paint for a year} and a few other little things. It’d be really great if the basement was finished and the front porch done, but we’ll see.

Thursday, July 16

One Month Old

I hate this…I hate that he’s already a month old! It’s gone so quickly, even when you do slow down, let the house go, and enjoy it. It’s just too fleeting. How has this month been, besides SHORT: It’s been really good. Peter is an exceptionally easy baby…he sleeps well, eats well and is just generally happy all around.

I was pretty much up and around the next day after Peter was born. Matt was home for the day and that was a big help. I was able to spend a lot of time just resting in bed, nursing, and chilling out. Matt had to go back to work the next day, but my mom was around pretty much every day 7am-7pm, so that I could rest and then so I had help getting back into the swing of things.

Nursing was going really well. My milk came in with very little discomfort, my nipples weren’t getting overly sore from his nursing, but he was pretty much attached 24/7…which was ok, forced me to take it easy and rest. However, by the time he was two weeks old I knew something was wrong.

He was nowhere near as chunky as when he was born. I broke out the kitchen scale and he was down to 8lbs on the nose, from his birth weight of 9lbs 4 ounces. He wasn’t dehydrated or anything…he had lots of wet diapers, but hadn’t pooped in over a week. Bottom line, there’s just not enough fat in my milk for him to gain weight. It was a hard day.

I cried. I was disappointed. I felt like I had betrayed Peter. I really was hoping the breastfeeding was going to work this time…it was working! It was going so well and I was quite literally reveling in my bodies ability to completely sustain this little baby, until it didn’t.

One of the things with breastfeeding after a reduction is the unknown: Unless I pump I don’t know how much milk Peter gets from me. My midwife and I were hopeful that it would all come together this time, for at least a month or two. We had done more research, were finding hopefully information that the more pregnancies you had that the ducts regenerated and breastfeeding became more successful with each attempt, but not this time.

The other difficulty was that Peter developed a pretty nasty case of thrush, that he shared with me. His mouth was to the point that he did not want to nurse because it hurt his poor little tongue too much. Given both of these issues we began pumping, bottle feeding, and supplementing.

He weighed in at 9lbs 11.9 ounces yesterday, which was fantastic! He was up 17 ounces from his appointment 10 days earlier, a vast improve from the 8lbs he was down to. Praise the Lord!

In this family we have a tradition….The Incredible Shrinking Bunny! Each of the kids have had their pictures taken with this bunny to mark how much they’ve grown. Unfortunately, none of the kids have their picture with the bunny at birth…no matter how hard I tried. {You can find the rest of the kids 4 Week/One Month posts HERE and HERE}.

DSC_0571 Peter 1 Month

And some other fun pictures from the past month…

Peter Birth Announcement



I hashtag Peter’s pictures on Instagram with #SweetPicklePeter

Thursday, July 9

The Art of American Whiskey {a Review}

A long while ago, I decided I had time to get a few more book reviews done before the baby was born…and then they didn’t happen. Well at least this one didn’t happen, because, you see, I showed Matt the book and it kind of disappeared. He and my dad were pouring over the pages of it. We’re kind of in the process of a new business venture, for which this book was extremely relevant; designing and creating our own labels for our own adult beverage {as we call them in our house}. 


The pictures in this book are gorgeous!  The history behind the different labels and companies, their graphics and their recipes were all spectacular! I particularly loved the old photographs of different distilleries and from Prohibition. There are so many different labels in this book, companies I’ve never heard of, and from a design standpoint it is incredible to see what other distillers have done over the last few hundred years!

If you know anyone who is at all interested in whiskey or in commercial graphic design, this is a serious thrill of a book to sit down with. It even has a few recipes to enjoy while you peruse!

**I received this book for free from Waterbrook Multnomah in exchange for my honest review. The opinions expressed here are solely my own. You can read my entire disclosure policy here. You can find this book for sale on Amazon.com.

Tuesday, June 30

a Birth Story

My greatest piece of advice to anyone awaiting a baby’s birth is now: Don’t have ANY expectations. I’ve learned at least that over the course of 3 births.

Peter’s birth was about what I expected, and yet completely different from what I had envisioned. How often I’d troll through pinterest, checking out all of the homebirth and water birth photography, with beautiful glowing mothers welcoming their little ones into the world, supported by those they loved, and photographed beautifully through the course of labor.

None of those photographs happened for me, and yes, a part of me is a bit sad that I will never have those pictures of laboring and our little ones being born. I had mentioned how much I had wanted to just experience and enjoy this laboring and delivery, and I did, but it was all too short {I know, I’m weird to complain about that}.

The weekend I was 40 weeks {June 13th} we stayed home with the kids and did some belly finger painting. By Sunday night we figured we’d probably have another week of no baby and soldiered into the week. I wasn’t having any contractions or anything else that was hinting at labor.

Monday. Nothing.

Monday night I slept kind of crappy. I kept waking up every few hours and having to go pee, a bit of contractions when I was awake, but nothing to even mention.

Tuesday dawned per usual. I made the kids breakfast, we picked up a bit, and played outside. At that point my back was starting to hurt every so often, but again, nothing regular, nothing like contractions.

I posted this picture of Avelyn playing “mommy” around 9:15 on Instagram….


And Ellie took this picture of me at 10:00, the last of me pregnant….


My sister was planning on coming down in the afternoon, around 3:30, so that I could go and sign the kids up for swimming lessons at 5pm. My mom was on the route with my dad {doing what I used to do}, Matt was at my parents’ house receiving deliveries, and I was just continuing on.

By noon I called my midwife to tell her that I was having contractions, but nothing regular, nothing increasing, nothing intense. I was texting back and forth with my mom and Matt. By 2pm I had called my midwife and told her it was contractions, she cleared her calendar for the afternoon and got ready to come over and I told Matt to have his mom come down because the kids were driving me batty during contractions.

My mother in law was here around 2:30pm and we were working on filling the birth pool when Matthew showed up at 3pm. Oh boy! Was I glad to see him! My sister arrived around 3:15…we chit-chatted between contractions for a bit, but then I had to focus too much. It was all in my back and they came hard, fast, and boy did they hurt!


I’ve never had back labor before, but it was something I was kind of expecting given the anterior placenta. Let me just say, it wasn’t fun and nothing could’ve prepared me for it. My mom arrived just before 4pm, straight from the route, donned my pajama bottoms and Matt’s shirt and got to work.

As my contractions grew stronger and closer my mom and Matt had to push on my back and hips as hard as possible…it was the only way I could handle them. I had tried kneeling the way I had with Avie, leaning on my yoga ball, and standing…none of those positions were helping. The best I could do was lie in bed during the contractions and focus on them, rather than just being uncomfortable.

At 4:05pm I had another strong contraction and felt my water break {kept waiting all day for that to happen, to confirm I was in labor and tell people to come}. I got up to go to the bathroom, leaking, and by the time I was walking back out of the bathroom I felt like I needed to push. The midwife wasn’t here yet.

For the next 20 minutes I literally had my legs crossed, lifting my belly, trying to keep this little one from being born. The midwife raced up the stairs just before 4:30 and I got in position to push. A couple of pushes and we had a head, shoulders. The baby just kind of chilled and the next contraction our little boy was born at 4:35 pm!

It was intense! After he was born I felt like my legs were jelly and my back was finished. I was winded after all of that and felt like I had just run flat out for my life. He was born an hour after I started to have regular and intense contractions, 30 minutes after my water broke, and I think he would’ve been born earlier if I had let him.

Then I realized I never even had a chance to get in the pool!

For the first hour he lay on my chest and nursed a bit and we all kind of sat there in awe. In awe of him, in awe of how fast everything was, in awe of the fact that we did it! We had our baby at home! {and almost without a midwife…I was to the point that I couldn’t hold off anymore when she walked in the door. I was literally praying, Lord, let her get here NOW!}.


We then cut the cord…


got him weighed…IMG_1733

and still didn’t have a name. It was an incredible experience and one I would gladly do again.


Our first family picture. The kids were a bit crazy!


But, at least someone got to enjoy the pool…