nine months old

My darling son is now 9 months old. 9 months (minus 1 day) of carrying him inside of me, and 9 months (plus 4 days) of holding him on the outside.

Wilder had a big month of milestones. Here are some of them:

HE LEARNED TO CRAWL! Last month I thought that it could happen any day, and it did at 8.5 months exactly. He finally crawled on the day that Bridget passed away, sadly. He has certainly been keeping us busy ever since.

In addition to crawling, he can now pull himself up to a standing position. By using anything that gives him support, he hoists his booty off of the ground and stands up, then gently sits back down again.

He waves hello and goodbye! It is the cutest thing ever, and something that I don’t think Remy ever did. The brat. He loves waving and gets excited when you clap and cheer him on.

Unfortunately, he became pretty ill with a high fever for 3 days, which inevitably turned into roseola. He sported full-body rash for 2 more days after that, and only started to feel better on day 6. Remy had roseola at 10 months. It’s awful.

I can only imagine what next month will bring. Fingers crossed he gets his first tooth or two!

Emory

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how to take beautiful maternity photos while on a budget

Your body while it’s carrying your baby to be can make for some amazing photos. If you’re an up and coming mother, you should consider taking a few portraits that capture the emotions you’re holding while you wait for your baby’s birth.

With that said, professional photos can be expensive. A skilled photographer has to have compensation, and rightfully so. It’s their job. If you’re budgeting for your parenthood, you may not want to spend too much on photos. Luckily, there are ways you can take some beautiful photos on a budget. Here’s how.

Negotiate

Have you found a great photographer whose style matches what you’re looking for, but their prices are too high? You may feel tempted to back down and try someone else. However, before you do that, talk to them. They may be willing to cut you a deal, a payment plan (more on that later,) or recommend a cheaper photographer. It doesn’t hurt to inquire about the services. Just remember that some photographer’s prices are firm. You can check out FamilyHype.com for more information on this as well.

Seek an Amateur Photographer

Photography is a profession that has a low barrier of entry because of how cheap cameras are nowadays. Chances are, you can find an aspiring photographer in your area with a DSLR and a passion for shooting. Ask around. You may find someone with some skills, but perhaps not all the equipment a professional has.

With that said, the photographer should have somewhat of a portfolio. Even an amateur has probably shot a few people in their day.

Also, pay your photographers. Even if they are willing to do it for free to build up their portfolio, a tip can show them that you care about their work and can appreciate what they do.

Be Simple

When you’re taking photos, you may feel the temptation to be a little extra. Props, extravagant locations, a huge set like you’re shooting in a movie. These can be fun, but let’s face it, you’re on a budget. Sometimes, it’s okay to be simple. Shooting at a creek, a backyard, a field, or any other location that’s easy to access may be for the better. It’s more affordable, and simplicity is the best solution at times.

Edit Later

When it comes to photos, digital retouching and editing can be an extra cost that breaks the bank. It’s possible to ask for retouching later on the road. You can edit them anytime, but your pregnancy only lasts for so long.

Ask for a Payment Plan

If you do want to hire a more expensive photographer, perhaps you can offer a payment plan. It may be easier to pay off your photos over time than it is to pay all at once. Some photographers may be more empathetic towards expectant parents, as long as you can make your payments on time.

Try a Phone

This may sound a little too low budget, but honestly, you can get some beautiful photos out of phones nowadays. Newer phones like the Galaxy S9 have some DSLR options, and there are filters to correct any blemishes and make them look beautiful. You can make your photos rich in color, make them beautiful black and white, and much more. While they are not a complete substitute for a professional camera, it’s a worthier replacement as time marches on. We say that it may be worth a shot if your budget is extremely tight.

Look for Discounts

Finally, there is always a chance a photographer is having a discount or a deal. For example, they may offer so much off if you recommend them to someone else, or they may have coupons. Some photographers may charge less if you sign up for an email newsletter. Discounts and deals are one of the biggest ways a business can reel in new clients, and one near you may be offering. Try it and see what you can find.

Striking that balance between a beautiful maternity photo and a photographer that doesn’t charge much can be a challenge. However, if you play it smart, you may a photographer that’s suitable for what you need. Talk to a few and see what you can find.

** This was a contributed post.

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video of my pregnancy journey


I am very excited to be sharing my pregnancy journey video with you today. I feel as if this pregnancy went much faster and smoother than my first one. Even though I don’t really enjoy being pregnant (from all of the worry and physical symptoms), I certainly do miss it when it is over.

I chose the song “Pray” by Sam Smith to accompany this video. Last year, when I was experiencing so many issues with my second pregnancy, I prayed and prayed for God to make the decision as to whether or not our baby would survive, and to help me accept the outcome. After I miscarried, I couldn’t believe that He chose to take our child away. However, deep down I knew that it was for a reason- one that I didn’t realize until Wilder was born.

I held off on praying for most of this pregnancy. That is, until the end. I was filled with worry that we might lose another one in the final weeks, so I began praying to be able to safely bring Wilder into this world. I did that every night until he was born, and by God’s grace, he was.

Now that Wilder is here, I understand that we had to lose our second child in order to have this beautiful, sweet, easy, calm, and happy baby. My blessed rainbow baby.

Feel free to look back at my first pregnancy video with little Remy.

Emory

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wilder’s birth story

Beautiful friends and family. Our newest addition, Wilder, is two months old today! To celebrate this little milestone, I am planning on sharing his birth story, as well as the first close-up photos of him on my blog. Please read at your own discretion!

To recap:

My original due date was November 22, but after having my first ultrasound appointment, it was bumped up to November 16. If you followed my pregnancy journey, you will remember that it was filled with mostly ups and a few downs. As annoying (and sometimes worrisome) as it was having Braxton Hicks contractions all day long for months on end, we counted our blessings at the end of each day that I remained pregnant. This was our rainbow baby and I was going to fight my hardest to bring him/her safely into this world.

Nov. 9

My husband began his paternity leave nearing the end of my third trimester. His job takes him out of town and so we wanted him to start his leave early in the event that I should go into labour early. As the first week went by and my due date was coming closer, we wondered when baby would join us. Then during the long weekend of November, my dad and his girlfriend came to stay with us for 4 nights. My doctor was also on call that weekend, and was planning on being out of town from November 16-26. After speaking with him, we decided that it was a good time to strip my membranes in hopes that I would go into labour that weekend. So he did. At that time, I was 3 cm dilated.

Nov. 10-13

Over the next few days, everyone was on edge waiting for me to go into labour. Including myself. I was having intense contractions during that time, only to have them disappear after having a nap or waking up the following morning. I kept busy, ate pineapples and dates, consumed red raspberry leaf tea, and more. Nothing seemed to be working. My dad ended up leaving on the 13th, which only made me sad that he wouldn’t be able to see our child, nor would we have help if we needed him to watch Remy. My doctor was also leaving town in a few days, and so I was getting stressed out that he would not deliver our baby. (I was lucky enough to have him deliver Remy.)

Nov. 14

I made up my mind on the 14th to drink castor oil. I had been reading about its pros and cons for weeks up until that point, and had initially decided against it. However, after talking to my sister (who also safely drinks it to induce labour), I decided to take two very small doses. If it did something, great. If not, I would just let baby come on his/her own time. They recommend taking 1-2 tbsp first thing in the morning, and again in the afternoon if labour does not start. That morning I tried taking 1 tsp but ended up throwing most of it up. Frustrated, I took 1.5 tsp that afternoon. I waited and waited. Nothing. So I went to bed that night with a very sore back, and mentally preparing to be overdue and without a family doctor.

Nov. 15 2:30 am

A few hours after falling asleep, I woke up thinking that I had wet the bed. I rushed to the bathroom and immediately saw a bloody show. I thought, “oh no.” Knowing that my sister’s husband had gone to work that night, and she was alone and lives out of town with her 6 children, I texted her and let her know that I was probably going into labour soon. She responded that she would keep her phone on in case we needed to come and drop off Remy. I waited for 15 minutes until my first contraction appeared in my back. I knew that I was in labour. I went back into our bedroom and told Geoff what was happening. He wanted to get going, but I said to wait a few more minutes just to be sure. My next contraction came 5 minutes after that, and then 2 minutes later. “Ok, I think we should go,” I told him. I put on my pajamas and went downstairs while he woke up Remy and brought her down as well. We loaded everything up in the vehicle. By then my contractions were 1.5 minutes apart, and I was starting to get nervous. Geoff said that he would drop me off at the hospital, quickly drive out of town to take Remy to her aunt’s house, and then come back to the hospital to help me through labour. We assumed that it would take hours, but we were wrong.

3:25 am

I arrived at the hospital and made my way up to the 4th floor. By then, my contractions were 1 minute apart. I was asked why I was there and I said, “I think I’m in labour.” I handed the nurses my documents, but said that I couldn’t fill anything out at that point. They said that they would examine me to see if I was going to be admitted or not. By the time that I had walked into the room, I felt the baby coming so I sat down in a chair. The nurse looked worried and asked me if it felt like I needed to poop. I responded that I did, and she left the room. Confused and in pain, I breathed through a few more contractions until she returned. When she did, she told me to get on the bed. I said that I couldn’t because it felt like the baby was going to fall out. She told me to get on it immediately, and so I did. Then she checked me and said that I was fully dilated and we had to go now! A team of nurses rushed in just then and began pushing my bed into the delivery room. They were telling me over and over again not to push yet. One of the nurses called Geoff from her cellphone and told him to hurry. At that point, he hadn’t even dropped Remy off.

3:25-3:55 am

I was still wearing my pjs and boots by the time I arrived in the delivery room. I shuffled onto the next bed and the doctor told me to start pushing. My doctor was apparently on his way. I gave a few pushes and suddenly I couldn’t hear the baby’s heartbeat. I asked if he/she was OK, and they responded that the heart rate was dropping and to get the baby out now. So I pushed as hard as I could, and I think that is when the head came out. Just then my doctor came into the delivery room (though I wasn’t aware of it at the time). He apparently took over and grabbed the head, just as baby’s shoulders got stuck. I felt extreme pressure but wasn’t being told what to do, so I kept pushing and pushing until suddenly, our baby was born! That was at 3:55 am, 1 hour and 10 minutes after my first contraction.

3:55 am

They placed our beautiful child on my chest and began to scrub it down. Someone asked if I wanted to know the sex and I said that I did. They looked and told me that it was a boy. A boy!! I was so happy and in so much shock that I just began to cry. I couldn’t believe that I had a son, that my labour had happened so quickly, and that my husband had missed it all.

4:10 am

They let me cut the umbilical cord, and I delivered the placenta in one push. My husband ended up arriving about 15 minutes after the birth. I saw his shoes under the curtain and told him that I had had the baby, and that I was sorry that I couldn’t wait any longer. He was shocked. Then I said that it was a boy, and he came over and gave me a kiss.

Wilder Joseph was born at 3:55 am on November 15, 2018. He weighed 7 lb 15 oz and was 20″ long. All of the nurses said that he already was living up to his name with his birth alone.

We were both upset at first that Geoffrey wasn’t there for my labour. But in the end, I delivered a healthy baby and Remy was taken care of, so we couldn’t have asked for anything more. Wilder has brought so much joy into our lives and family. He truly is a rainbow after such stormy weather.

To read Remy’s birth story, click here.

Emory

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our little nursery

Today I will be sharing another makeover story with you all. It is our master bedroom and nursery. Pictured above and below is what our bedroom looked like prior to our impromptu renovation.

This all began when Geoffrey had more than a week off at the beginning of August. I was 26 weeks pregnant at the time, and had spent the summer nesting. At the time we thought that we were done with renos until after I had our baby. However, being that we were planning on sharing our master bedroom with our newborn, and it was the only room that we didn’t touch since we purchased our home, I began to feel the strongest urge to do something. The walls, carpet, and baseboards were stained from the previous occupants, the fixtures were so old and grimy, and it just felt dirty. I really didn’t want to bring a new and pure child into such a gross room. Geoffrey agreed and so he set about painting the entire room white and changing the fixtures. After buying Remy a new bed, we made her bed back into a crib and brought it in our room. Below is an after photo.

Fast-forward to the beginning of September, and once again my husband was unexpectedly given more time off. (To explain- he is a train conductor that works hard and often makes enough miles before a certain date each month. When he does, he gets those remaining days off until the calendar resets. It is either between a few days to a few weeks per month! I love his job.) We had been staring at the carpet in our freshly painted room over the last few weeks, and decided that now was the time to replace it. That said, I was not able to physically help him refinish the floors this time. Not wanting to do them by himself, he said that we should pick out new flooring and get it professionally installed. I agreed. We went to our usual flooring store where they know us very well and always give us a discount. After bringing home samples, we just could not agree on a colour or style. He wanted dark laminate or carpet. I wanted light hardwood. See above.

Overwhelmed and running out of time, I said that I would sleep on it. The next morning, I cautiously told Geoff that I wanted him to refinish the floors beneath the carpet. His first response was a firm no. He didn’t want to put in the hard work himself, in addition to not knowing what state the original hardwood floors were in. I told him that we would be saving a few thousand dollars, and could do it faster than having to hire contractors. His answer was still a no. So I promised that if the floors were in terrible shape, that we would pay to cover them with laminate or hardwood. Right away, he begrudgingly started tearing out the carpet. So far, so good.

The next day he rented a floor sander and sanded the entire room. Boy, he was not happy. He was also filthy and sneezing. Inside, I was ecstatic! So was Remy! They were in better shape than I could have hoped for. See the progress below.

I think that it only took half a day to stain the floors. After that, Geoff installed the quarter round to cover the gaps. In order to help him out, I painted the trim and our dresser. It was difficult with my big belly and being 7 months pregnant, but I didn’t want him to complain anymore. I also wanted to show my appreciation for making our room over!

In the last month, we have purchased a new bed (going from a Queen to a King), area rug, and other items here and there. The room just fell into place, and we are both so pleased with it. Even though Geoff still won’t admit it, I know that he loves the floors. Plus, between saving money on flooring and buying everything when it was on sale, we saved thousands of dollars! I call that a win considering this makeover wasn’t on our to-do list anytime soon.

Additionally, we decided to hire a furnace and duct cleaning company. Our home is well over 100 years old, and we have done so many renos that have involved sanding the floors that we just wanted to make sure our air was clean for ourselves and, more importantly, for baby. After spending the morning clearing out our ducts, we were told by the technician that our home has probably never been done before. He was getting clumps of solidified black dust and other disgusting material. It took an entire day to scrub our house down after that. Now we are on a two-year rotation to have the service done. I highly recommend it!

That was the story of our latest makeover. I hope you guys enjoyed it. I also hope that it will be the last one for a long while! I don’t think that I can take many more renovations.

Emory

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  • Welcome, friends! My name is Emory. I am a wife and mother to three (two on earth and one in heaven). This is our life on the Canadian prairies.
    email: helloscarlettblog@outlook.com

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