Baby Mama’s Hospital Bag Checklist

Baby Mama's Hospital Bag Checklist

As I hit 37 weeks on Monday with my 3rd pregnancy, I realize maybe I’ve been a liiiiiitle too lax this time around! We enjoyed vacation, and then upon returning home, I have been frantically realizing that we might not have as much time as we think we do, and being full term, who knows when this baby will arrive! Along with trying to get bunk beds set up for Nico and Luca, I am also planning their 5th and 3rd Birthday Party, running my health + fitness coaching business, and trying to survive a hot summer home as a stay at home working mama with two kids 24/7 home from school.

I still have yet to pack my bag even after making this checklist…I think that will be the first thing I do after hitting POST on this! But do as I say, and not as I do, right? ūüėČ Haha. I would recommend having this bag packed by 36 weeks at the latest, because you honestly just never know!!! At least the essentials.

While this checklist may seem quite large…know that I am a serial over-packer. You’re like, ok….WHY am I reading this post then? This is supposed to be HELPFUL! Haha, but hear me out. Everyone has different needs and necessities, and I also got some feedback from many of you that was fantastic…so I do include quite a bit to make sure I covered most of the bases. That said, if I mentioned EVERYTHING that people suggested, then it would become too overwhelming. So I included many of the things that I found useful and a few additions that I know others have truly found useful in past pregnancies.

I will highlight some of my FAVORITES and MUST-HAVES for ME…and then I have included an overall checklist that you can feel free to print out. I included a section at the bottom in case you want to add some things that I didn’t find necessary that you may want to bring.

I hope this is helpful for many of you new mamas out there! Or even any 2nd or 3rd or beyond time mamas, because through the craziness of labor and delivery, sometimes it’s hard to remember back when!

Okay so here we go:

THE HIGHLIGHTS:

1.¬†Footwear: I absolutely recommend a pair of your own non-skid socks as they make you wear them in the hospital so you don’t slip, and the ones they give you are pretty terrible. I just bought this pair from Kindred Bravely. Many people also love to have a pair of slippers. I didn’t really find I needed them having all August babies, but if you are a slipper gal, these are a nice pair. I DO recommend bringing flip flops, because you will want to take a shower at some point post-partum, and you will NOT want to put your bare feet in that shower. I also wore my flip flops coming home, so they were essential!

2. Hair Ties/Head Band: I definitely wanted something to pull my hair back after a long time in the delivery room, so a hair tie was essential for me! A headband can also be a good idea. No need to get fancy here. I picked mine up from a local drug store. Post partum, I needed a brush/comb for after a shower. Some people take the time to blow dry their hair if that’s your thing and makes you feel like a human afterwards, but I threw mine up in a top knot personally and called it a day.

3. Make Up: This is what DOES make me feel more like a human. Haha. Post partum after showering, I definitely wanted to freshen up, especially before it was time to go home and see my mom and family (not that they cared, but again, makes ME feel better!) So I plan to bring this BB cream, powder, under eye concealer, blush, eyeliner, mascara, and lipstick. I will also bring CHAPSTICK for labor and delivery, which definitely should not be forgotten as your lips will get super dry with all the hospital air and all the heavy breathing.

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4. Nursing Bra: Comfort is KEY. Something I can sleep in as well as wear all day and comfortably nurse in and then go home in. I think I’m going to purchase these. (certain colors are also on sale now!) Will let you know how I like them! I may also bring a stretchier, comfy sports bra or bralette.

5. Robe: I stayed in the hospital gown almost the whole time with my first baby, and wished I had brought a robe, so the 2nd time I brought a comfy one that I got for free from Ulta along with a purchase. So much more comfortable that time around! Here is another one from Victoria’s Secret that looks cozy.

6. Motherlove Nipple Cream + Breast Pads: Not gonna lie. Nursing hurt like a B*TCH for me for the first couple weeks after having BOTH babies. Motherlove Nipple Cream was my savior and the only thing that made them feel better and heal. I applied it literally every time after I nursed, and will absolutely do it again. Breast pads are also a good idea as your milk may start to come in and leakage is no fun. I like these reusable ones that you can wash and use again, but also use and love these disposable ones from Lansinoh as well.

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7. Herbal Perineal Spray: I have never used this before, but I have read about them on a few different blogs, and it sounds like I have been missing out and that it’s super helpful with recovery and pain after birth, so I plan to get some of this Earth Mama ASAP to add to my bag!

8. Comfy Clothes: I plan to pack some comfy clothes all around…a couple days worth of tops, pants, (most likely my maternity leggings or something similar) in dark colors, pajamas or something to sleep in, and then something to go home in. Nothing fancy. Comfort is KEY.

9. Pillow + Nursing Pillow: It’s nice to have some comforts from home, so I always brought my own pillow to try and sleep as much as I could since I was so exhausted during and after giving birth! I also found a nursing pillow to be really helpful for breastfeeding, and I used my Boppy¬†every time!

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10. Towel: Hospital towels are the WORST and ridiculously small. It will feel SO amazing to dry off with a soft, comfortable towel from home after your first post partum shower.

11. Cell Phone + Charger: This is kind of an obvious, because who doesn’t go anywhere without their phones these days. But one thing you may want to add is a portable charger or an extension cord to your list, because oftentimes the plugs can be so far away from the beds and it’s a pain to have the phone so far away while charging.

12. Camera: I always brought my DSLR camera to take some photos before and after delivery and for those early moments in the hospital. Sure, you can use your phone, and I will likely take phone pics also, but I will absolutely bring my camera to capture some precious moments. Make sure to bring your camera FULLY charged, so you don’t have to worry about bringing chargers…and also make sure your SD card is IN your camera! I can’t tell you the number of times I have brought my camera out to shoot something and then realized my SD card was in my computer or somewhere else.

13. Toiletries: These will be different for everyone, but I plan to bring shampoo, conditioner, a little hair de-frizz product, soap, face wash, face wipes, face oil/moisturizer, body lotion, deodorant, toothbrush, and toothpaste.

14. Snacks + Water Bottle: You may or may not be allowed to eat in the delivery room, but either way, you will want some snacks for the next couple days. Hospital food is mediocre at best and you will be STARVING. I also always try to scope out the local food in the neighborhood of the hospital, so I can send hubby out on a food run! Trust me, he is MORE than willing to oblige as he doesn’t want that hospital food either! Haha. Many of you suggested bringing your own water bottle to the hospital because you either didn’t like the cups provided or they were too small and you had to keep refilling. I don’t remember water being an issue for me, but wanted to include it here and will pack one this time just in case since it’s a new hospital for me.

15. Clothes for Baby: You will definitely want some onesies for the baby while you’re in the hospital. I always hated the clothing they had them in at the hospital the first time, so the second time I brought my own clothes. And then something for them to go home in. I usually just chose a cute sleep and play with a baby hat to match. Bonus if the outfit has built-in anti-scratch mittens, because the separate ones always fell off my babies hands.

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16. Swaddle Sleep Sack: 2 kiddos down and I still can’t properly swaddle using a blanket, so I will bring our Halo Sleep Sack for baby, so I don’t need to call a nurse every time I need to swaddle!

17. Car Seat Installed: Make sure you have your car seat installed now just in case so you are ready when it’s GO time! I remember feeling like our babies were SO tiny in those things, and I just couldn’t quite believe they were going to let us take them home!

18. Gifts for Nurses/Staff: I have never actually done this before, but I have read it on a few other blogs and it seems like a really nice gesture to at least give them some cards with a nice note and maybe a sweet treat.

If you have older siblings in the house, it’s also a nice idea to bring them a gift or a goodie bag from “from the baby.” Since the baby will be getting so much of the attention, it will be nice for them to feel the extra love coming from baby! Since all my boys are August babies, I plan on having the new baby give them Birthday presents when he arrives!

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There are some other things on the printable list for you to go through, but these were some that I really used, needed, or enjoyed having there! Can’t believe we will be doing this again soon! Okay…time for me to go pack now!

Your printable checklist is below. Happy packing and congrats on your sweet babe on the way!

XO,

Gina

Baby Mama’s Hospital Bag Checklist

Baby Mama's Hospital Bag Checklist

Joylab

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Sweatshirt: Joylab for Target (sold out) – also like this one / Side Tie Leggings: Joylab for Target / Sneakers: Blondo via Trunk Club / Sunnies: Brickyard Buffalo (old)

Okay, you guys. I am seriously behind on blog posts! This shoot was done back in NOVEMBER. I know, I know. Look how long my hair was! And this was before the baby bump even existed. But better late than never right? And guess what? Joylab, the now new-ish activewear line from Target is still fabulous…and comfortable and adorable…and totally perfect for that busy mom-on-the-go life.

I’m telling you, this sweatshirt is the softest, most comfortable ever, and was my go-to all winter long. The fit is loose with plenty of room for that belly that continued (and still continues) to grow as well. The leggings no longer fit with the bump, however, I look forward to wearing them again once baby arrives. Super sleek, comfy and perfect for either a workout, running errands, or hanging at the playground with your kiddos.

The rest of their line is adorable too, so I would check it out if you haven’t already!

This week has been a bit gloomy here in the Big Apple, and I’m personally missing the sunshine. However, mama and baby had a good doctor’s appointment this week…which if you have been following me on Facebook, you know it’s been a crazy roller coaster. I haven’t really shared over here, but we had a super big health scare with baby a couple weeks back which required some further testing, and luckily the results came back looking good, thank GOD. So to hit Week 26 this week with another good appointment is frankly the only real sunshine I TRULY need.

Happy Friday to all, and cheers to getting some more uber-belated blog posts up in the next few weeks!

XO,

Gina

 

Baby Notes #3 Reveal

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Oh my gosh, you guys. The reveal day is finally here!!! I have been waiting to share (and find out myself) for so long! Lemme tell you, holding onto that envelope for 2 weeks while Zack was out of town was not easy! Haha. But our props finally arrived, Zack came home, and Saturday was go time. We headed to Prospect Park with Tyler Lyons on Saturday evening around sunset to capture our reveal and our reactions along with the news. It was a beautiful evening, and we are so happy for our little Baby Notes on the way!

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Your guesses on Facebook and Instagram massively skewed toward girl. I honestly went back and forth each trimester thinking something different. Of course, I found this soccer ball reveal prop on Etsy, and I just HAD to use it being a soccer player and now that my boys love the sport as well. My neighbor was the first one to find out since she purchased the soccer ball for me to use for this shoot. Okay…keep scrolling to find out if you guessed it right!!!

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It’s a BOY!!!! Another Brother! #boysonlyclub

Oh my gosh. You should have seen poor little Nico’s face. He was CERTAIN it was going to be pink, and he was in SUCH a state of shock. I felt a little bad that we hyped up this reveal a little too much, because apparently he really got into it! He was hoping for a sister…That said, one day later, and he was back to being super excited again about his little baby on the way!

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So I had an extra ball ordered, because I wasn’t sure how easy they were going to be to break open, and I was a little nervous myself or one of the kids would break it before we actually got to take our photos! LOL. I will say that this thing was STURDY as a rock. I had to kick is really hard (and my foot actually hurt haha), so I don’t think buying two was necessary. But that said, we had an extra one, so we let Nico throw it down to take a few more photos once we knew we were having a little BOY! It took him about 4 throws before he could get it to break, but he finally got it!

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The official sonogram pic that the sono tech had put in an envelope for me. Yup. No doubt about that anatomy haha.

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Can’t believe I’m gonna be a #boymom for life!!! Wow! Another little monkey will be joining this crazy crew in August!

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Thank you Tyler Lyons for capturing this special family moment for us! It was so much fun!

Tyler also snagged a video for us from his phone, and I edited a little something together as well if you want to watch the action.

Thank you all for your patience! I know I was driving some of you crazy making you all wait this long to find out haha. One person even said they thought we were having twins because of all the hype hahaha. NO. I guess I have always just loved a big production. ūüėČ

To see the reveals we did in the past for Nico and Luca you can check them out here (Nico’s) and here (Luca’s).

Thanks for all the love and I feel so incredibly blessed right now! ‚̧ ‚̧ ‚̧

Wishing you all a wonderful week!

XO,

Gina

#20 Have Children

You may have been wondering why I suddenly fell off the blogosphere these past two weeks…or maybe you have already guessed. ¬†Much to everyone’s surprise, our Little Monkey decided to grace us with his presence two weeks early! ¬†Now this Great Freakin’ Adventure bucket list item is probably the most significant one I will ever check off.

Please welcome Nico Alfredo Notes to the world!  Born Thursday August 29, 2013 at 10:53pm at 5 lbs. 1.6 oz. and 19 inches.

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Ever since I was a child myself, I dreamed about what it would be like to have a child of my own. ¬†As kids, my sister and I played house, school, doctor, and other role-playing games where we would play the “mom” taking care of our babies. ¬†I guess that is just something that little girls do…or maybe that was just us, I don’t know. ¬†As we grew older, the idea of having kids was something we tried to avoid, especially during our teenage and college years. ¬†Finish school, get a job, get married, then have babies, right? ¬†Of course, that doesn’t always ring true in the real world, but that’s what I was aiming for, and luckily, my life played out according to plan in that way.

However, the plan itself does not always go the way you would imagine.  Life is just not that way, and ours was no different.  It was not without struggle and some hard times.  We were fortunate to get pregnant pretty quickly, but then our world crashed down when we lost our little Peanut.  It was tough to move on, but the news of our Little Monkey on the way helped with the process.  Although we were scared of something terrible happening again, there was still that glimmer of hope which increased with every week of my pregnancy.

There were both ups and downs with the pregnancy, but all in all I would say I had a very healthy, wonderful pregnancy experience.  Toward the end, I loved feeling him jump around in my belly and we imagined every day what he would look like.  It still feels weird to not have him in my belly anymore, and I half expect to feel a kick every now and again.  I am glad to have this blog which documents most of this experience, and I look forward to showing it to Nico one day.

Now let’s look back to right before Labor Day Weekend. ¬†What I thought would be a routine 38 week check up on that Wednesday morning at 9am turned into me being admitted to the Labor and Delivery unit that morning and staying there for quite some time. ¬†My husband and I got called back for my routine ultrasound, and baby was not exactly cooperating that morning. ¬†He passed all of the tests with flying colors, except he wasn’t making any sharp movements. ¬†Now, I have my theories on this…we typically had 1pm appointments…maybe baby was just sleeping at 9am? ¬†However, he also fell down quite significantly in the growth percentile. ¬†He had been measuring small the entire time, but the docs said he was growing every time, so they were not really too concerned. ¬†They kept a close eye, and at this 38 week appointment, the percentile dropped to where they started to be concerned. ¬†My regular doc was on vacation that week, so they had someone filling in. ¬†Because of the lack of movement and drop in growth percentile, and the fact that I was full term at 38 weeks, the fill-in doc recommended that I be induced that very day. ¬†I’m sorry, WHAT DID YOU SAY??? ¬†Induced…today??? As in, RIGHT NOW??? ¬†Where is my normal doctor? ¬†Who is this lady?? ¬†Does she even know what she is talking about? ¬†She doesn’t even know our story! ¬†Would Dr. Stein say the same thing? ¬†These are some of the thoughts that ran through my head. ¬†My husband and I were clearly in utter shock. ¬†We had nothing with us. ¬†Our hospital bag was all packed, but it was all the way at home. ¬†I told myself beforehand that my “birthing plan” was more of a go-with-the-flow mentality, because it’s impossible to predict what will happen…but this is NOT what I was thinking, and I was not feeling like going-with-the-flow right now. ¬†We went down to the Labor and Delivery unit at the hospital and I spoke with the midwife on call. ¬†We did a series of extra tests, which the baby passed with flying colors, and I really second guessed this decision to be induced two weeks early. ¬†It was ultimately our decision, but we had a strong rec from the doctors, and really, what was our alternative? ¬†Go home, be stressed 24/7 about whether or not we made the right decision, or wondering if my placenta was somehow failing and baby was not getting nutrition the whole time? ¬†Or get the baby out now safely while he’s still healthy, no matter what it took. ¬†The choice for us was obvious.

Luckily, the hospital staff was wonderful, and because baby was still doing really well, they told me they would not rush the process, and make sure to take as much time as needed for as long as we could to make this induction happen and to try to avoid a C-section. ¬†They let me have my “last meal” before being admitted, and Zack went home to pick up all of our stuff for the hospital, including our car. ¬†The next time we would be going home, we would be going home with a baby. ¬†This reality was finally creeping in on us, and it brought a whole new meaning to Labor Day Weekend.

Once the induction process started, it was a long road. ¬†It finally got started around 6:30pm (after being in the hospital since 9 am). ¬†12 hours and another day later things finally seemed like maybe they were moving along. ¬†Unfortunately, after the midwife examined me…it turned out that things were not really moving along all too well. ¬†Rather, than drug me up with more and more pitocin (which they did not think would work for a natural delivery), she suggested that we start the process over. ¬†WHAT? ¬†Again? ¬†12 more hours of this? ¬†And what if it doesn’t work again? ¬†I am doomed for a C-section. ¬†I wasn’t feeling too optimistic at this point, but I trusted that the midwife was recommending the best thing for me and what what we wanted for this delivery. ¬†So, they let me take a shower, have another “last meal”, and we tried again.

Somehow, someway, the process worked this time and I started progressing. ¬†That was a ridiculously happy moment for us, and I started to feel hopeful. ¬†The rest of that afternoon, I felt contractions, but I wasn’t in a terrible amount of pain. ¬†My mom, sister, and mother-in-law were able to make it up to NY in time to be there before the delivery. ¬†I had very lucid conversations with them through my contractions, and I was generally pleasant for a lot of the time.

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I kept progressing, they eventually broke my water, and it was then that everything kicked into high gear. ¬†My contractions started getting more difficult to handle, and thank God for those birthing classes my husband and I took as he was so helpful in getting me through a lot of them. ¬†Eventually it got to a point where I said, “I don’t have to be supermom right? ¬†I need an epidural.” ¬†It didn’t kick in right away, but let me tell you…I was so happy when it did. ¬†Before we knew it, the midwife was telling me it was time to push. ¬†Already? ¬†For such a slow start, this birth certainly was moving quickly now! ¬†We didn’t even have time to tell our family that it was go time. ¬†We just had to go. ¬†A small army of medical professionals surrounded us and my nether region, but at this point, I was so over feeling awkward…I mean I had to pee in a bedpan for the past 24 hours, because they couldn’t unhook me from the machines…my humility had already gone out the window. ¬†I pushed like a rock star for only 20 minutes, and our baby boy finally arrived! ¬†Right before he came out, his heart rate started to drop, and there were talks of possibly using a vacuum to get him out. ¬†I guess that was all I needed to hear to get him out as soon as possible. ¬†Turns out, the culprit was the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck twice that had tightened up as he was coming down the birth canal. ¬†Thank God for those last quick pushes. ¬†They placed him on my chest, and I was so overwhelmed with emotion and shock, and I don’t even know what else. ¬†It was so surreal that this little “alien” jumping around in my belly for nine months was finally here and a teeny tiny human in the real world. ¬†My Little Monkey. ¬†My Nico.

It was a magical experience, that I don’t think you can even accurately describe or understand the feeling unless you have gone through it yourself. ¬†We stayed at the hospital for about a day and a half after Nico’s birth, trying to recover and pick up all the tricks of the trade from the nurses. ¬†My husband even videotaped a nurse doing a swaddle. ¬†Trust me, it has definitely helped out at home! ¬†It was pretty unreal taking our baby home and realizing that we were now officially parents who had a new job of raising this child.

My mother-in-law stayed with us for a few days to help out with cooking, cleaning, giving us time to catch up on sleep, etc.  We are extremely grateful to have such a wonderful support system.  Once she left, we missed her and the help, but it was nice to try and figure out this parenting thing on our own, and get into as much of a routine as we possibly could.

I can’t believe it’s already been two weeks since our little Nico arrived. ¬†I already feel like we have been through so much emotionally, mentally, physically, and more. ¬†As soon as we think we have things figured out, something changes. ¬†Everyone says this, and I thought I would be different, but breastfeeding is not easy. ¬†Sleep is so important for your sanity and well-being. ¬†And it’s integral to get out of the house every now and then.

Nico is doing well and gaining back his birth weight.  He has been a pretty awesome baby so far, and he sleeps a lot for which we are very appreciative.  As crazy and exhausting and hard as motherhood can be, I am loving every minute of it so far.  Just seeing that little face every day, the little smiles he gives, and knowing that my husband and I created such an innocent, wonderful little being makes everything worth it.  I already feel like time is moving by so fast, and before I know it, he will be going off to prom or getting married.  I am so excited for the journey that is to come and ready to take on all of the challenges that come with being a mommy.

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Heading home from the hospital

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Like father like son

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Nico with his Nana (my Grandma)

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He smiles!

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Silly Monkey

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First trip to Prospect Park

Since this major life change, I can’t promise to keep up with my blog as often as I once did, and I can’t promise I will take a shower every day. ¬†But I can promise to give this baby the world, my best, and everything I’ve got.

XO,

Gina

Boho Bump

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You may remember this Free People number from last fall when I styled it with a military flair.  These days, flowy dresses are the most comfortable thing to wear, and I love that this dress is so versatile and adaptable from season to season.  I paired it with a sari bag and handmade bracelets from Uncommon Goods as well as a beaded headpiece for a summery bohemian look.  These photos were taken at 36.5 weeks pregnant on my trip to the Hester Street Fair last weekend, and I cannot believe I only have a few more weeks of outfit photos left with this baby bump!

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Photos By: Zack Notes / Edited By: Myself

Dress: Free People (old) – Free People Dress Shop / Headpiece: American Eagle / Flops: Havaianas / Sari Bag: Uncommon Goods / Bracelets: Uncommon Goods and Guilty Jean / Necklace: Guilty Jean / Watch: Coach / Elephant Ring: nOir / Lip: MAC Up the Amp / Nails: Essie Naughty Nautical

Happy Friday Everyone!

XO,

Gina

{14} Lately…

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34 Weeks

Lately I’ve been…

reading¬† Just finished The Sh!t No One Tells You: A Guide to Surviving Your Baby’s First Year¬†by Dawn Dais. ¬†I’m not sure whether or not it was a good idea or a bad idea to read this book. ¬†It was quite terrifying, although I suppose I am grateful for the dose of reality and preparations. ¬†Just started reading Maine¬†by J. Courtney Sullivan. ¬†Stumbled across it last week while browsing at Barnes and Noble and figured I would read it since I went to Maine this summer. ¬†It’s more of a beach read about family summer drama.

writing¬† Well technically, I haven’t started yet, because my apartment has been a disaster zone since the baby shower, and I haven’t even been able to sit on the couch. ¬†HOWEVER, I plan on starting to write out some thank you notes this weekend for all of the lovely gifts we received from our family and friends.

listening¬† I think I am late on this song, but I heard it a few weeks ago, and honestly it reminds me of my grandfather who always used to say, “You’re gonna miss me when I’m gone.” ¬†Ain’t that the truth, Grandpa. ¬†The song is Cups¬†by Anna Kendrick from the movie Pitch Perfect.

thinking ¬†That every time I think my belly can’t possibly get any bigger…I wake up, and it’s bigger.

smelling¬† The Victoria’s Secret Dream Angels Heavenly that I put on this morning.

watching¬† The Challenge: Rivals II. ¬†I know it’s ridiculous that I still follow these shows, but I just can’t get enough of the drama that unfolds with every new season of a challenge. ¬†I also constantly wonder how I would measure up in these challenges. ¬†Something tells me I would give those girls a run for their money.

wishing¬† That I could fly out to Missouri to celebrate my friend’s Cris and Kate’s big day this weekend! ¬†This is the second big wedding we have missed this year, and it’s definitely a bummer to not be there, even though I know it’s for a good reason. ¬†Wishing Cris and Kate a magical day and lots of love!

hoping ¬†To make a lot of progress on our little boy’s room this weekend. ¬†I’m really excited for my vision of how it will look when it’s finished, but it’s a long process to get there! ¬†I’m hoping we can get a good chunk done this weekend. ¬†Am I in nesting mode perhaps?

wearing  Mint green shorts and a gray and orange striped top (different color here), both from Motherhood Maternity.

loving  The maternity session photos that Misa*Me Photography took for us!  She gave us a little sneak peek, and I am so excited to share them with you all in the next couple of weeks.  She did a wonderful job, as always.  Stay tuned!

laughing  At this rendition of Ice Ice Baby that my co-worker shared with me earlier this week.  Props to the editor for stringing together 280 movies worth of clips to create this.

wanting  To swing by the Hester Street Fair on the Lower East Side this weekend.  My friends, Nicole and Maria, have a booth this summer for their handcrafted jewelry company, Guilty Jean, who you may remember from these previous posts. (Spring Has Sprung, Preppy With a Twist, Spiked & Studded, and Boho Spring).  Looking forward to checking out their latest line!

needing  Water, water, water.  Hydration is key for this prego mama.

feeling ¬†Alien-like movements coming from my belly. ¬†He’s kicking and squirming more and more every day. ¬†I swear, it’s the weirdest feeling ever that something is alive and moving inside of you! ¬†But it’s also pretty cool.

craving  Watermelon.  Nothing like this delicious fresh fruit on a hot summer day.

clicking ¬†Through resume after resume. ¬†Trying to find someone to fill in for me at work while I’m away. ¬†I think we are getting close to making a decision!

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What have you been up to lately?

Happy Friday!  Hope you all have a great weekend!

Love,

Gina

***I was inspired by Tina of Like Ordinary Life to create this post, and she was inspired by Lauren of siddathornton, who started The Sunday Currently.

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Monkey Business

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When we came up with the name “Little Monkey” for our future babe, we never realized how much this name would take off! ¬†When we started using the name, we didn’t know if we were having a boy or a girl. ¬†Once we found out, we decided we wanted to keep his name a surprise until his arrival, so again the nickname, Little Monkey, stuck. ¬†It seems that is has stuck with everyone else as well! ¬†My mom, sister, and aunt threw us a beautiful monkey themed baby shower for our little boy, and I swear, I didn’t know this much monkey stuff existed! ¬†Monkey cake, monkey diaper tower, monkey onesies (for many different months and hardly any duplicates!), monkey sheets, monkey towels, monkey blankets, monkey backpacks, monkey toys, and the list goes on and on. ¬†At this point, it literally looks like a monkey exploded all over our living room. ¬†Our family and friends have spoiled us with many wonderful gifts for our little guy. ¬†We are so grateful and appreciative to have so many great people supporting us and loving us and our little one on the way. ¬†And one thing is for sure…he is either going to really love or really hate monkeys at the end of his first year! ¬†Here are a few photos from the shower. ¬†Hope you enjoy!

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The ladies behind it all! Thank you so much!

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We had our second prenatal pediatrician consult this morning, and still have one more to go before we decide on a doctor for our little guy. ¬†Had a good doc appointment yesterday, and it looks like he is growing strong! ¬†Still working on “project nursery”, and think it’s going to take quite some time before it’s complete, so hopefully he continues to hang out inside for a little while before making his grand entrance.

Hope you are all having a great week!

XO,

Gina

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{13} Lately…

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Lately I’ve been…

reading¬† Just finished What Remains by Carole Radziwill. ¬†She is one of the more recent additions to the New York City Housewife cast, although she wrote this book long before. ¬†Carole was a reporter for many years, a princess, and related to the Kennedy’s. ¬†This memoir is about friendship, love, and loss. ¬†It’s extremely sad, but very real, and Radziwill is an excellent writer. ¬†I just started Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks as I heard it was decent and was looking for a light summer beach read (even though I’m not at the beach).

writing¬† Contracts. ¬†I’m no lawyer, and I can’t exactly say much yet, but it’s exciting, and I’m drafting, drafting.

listening¬† I’ve always been an Avicii fan, but I’m really loving his new single Wake Me Up. ¬†It starts out with a folk/country guitar style, and breaks into the typical dance/house style of Avicii that we know and love.

thinking ¬†That all I wanted was summertime, and now I got my wish…but it’s so hot, I don’t know how this prego body is going to make it through August.

smelling¬† Breakfast food…my favorite!

watching¬† Holy Bachelorette! ¬†Some intense home visits and a sad goodbye. ¬†Go figure they are all in love with her, except the one she is in love with. ¬†I still can’t believe I got into this show this season…those to blame, you know who you are…

wishing¬† That I could fly out to San Fran to celebrate my friend’s Trey and Suzette’s big day this weekend! ¬†I know it will be amazing, and I’m sad to miss it. ¬†But excited instead to celebrate my bestie Teri’s bridal shower and a baby shower for my Little Monkey.

hoping ¬†For good weather this weekend. ¬†We have a maternity photo session scheduled with Misa*Me Photography, and I’m hoping the weather will cooperate!

wearing  Gray and blue striped cotton jersey dress that was handed down to me by Danielle, my college roomie and cutest little mama!

loving ¬†The new Up the Amp MAC lipstick that I got for free by turning in my 6 empties to recycle. ¬†Also loving the new Benefit They’re Real Mascara I got for my birthday from Sephora.

laughing ¬†At this awesome maid of honor speech I discovered on Zigi’s blog. ¬†I died laughing, and it totally made me think of my bestie Teri. ¬†Let’s just say this girl does a sick Eminem.

wanting ¬†To jump in a pool for my birthday (next weekend)…anyone know a place in the city that could throw a good pool party?

needing ¬†Air conditioning. ¬†Been blasting it lately! ¬†I’m dreading the electric bill.

feeling ¬†Incredibly lucky for my amazing family and friends. ¬†Everyone has been so generous, and we have already started getting lots of packages and gifts to the house for our little man, and I haven’t even had my shower yet! ¬†I cannot wait to get everything in order! ¬†Thank you everyone, I really appreciate it.

craving  Chocolate and fruit.  I have been wanting a little bit almost every day lately.

clicking  Photography inspiration ideas for our shoot this Saturday.

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What have you been up to lately?

Happy Tuesday!

Love,

Gina

***I was inspired by Tina of Like Ordinary Life to create this post, and she was inspired by Lauren of siddathornton, who started The Sunday Currently.

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Dotted in the Desert

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The weather was beautiful in Southern Arizona, and I was so happy to be rockin’ a sleeveless dress with no jacket! ¬†I wore this little handkerchief hem dress to the Sonoran Desert Museum in Tucson, and I even got a little suntan! ¬†This flowy little number was perfect for my prego belly and very comfortable in cotton. ¬†And I must mention that this dress is not a maternity dress! ¬†I have found that by buying dresses san zippers and in comfy material, I can find items that are much more fashion forward than the typical things I have been finding in the maternity sections (although there have been some good exceptions!)

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Photos by: Zack Notes / Edited by: Myself

Dress: Target / Sunnies: LOFT / Sandals: Sam Edelman via Nordstrom Rack / Watch: Michael Kors / Skull Bracelets: c/o Guilty Jean / Spike Bracelet: ASOS / Bow Bracelet: Baublebar / Toe Polish: Essie Avenue Maintain

Today is overcast, a little rainy, and a little chilly here in New York, making me miss that Arizona sun! ¬†This week I’ve been trying to play catch up at work, at the doctor’s, with my DVR, and on life in general. ¬†Hubby had to skip town for a quick business trip to Atlanta, so we are going to celebrate our two year anniversary (bc Arizona just wasn’t enough) with a date night when he returns on Friday.

Happy Wednesday!

XO,

Gina

It’s A………….!!!!!

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I interrupt the Guilty Jean jewelry series for a very special announcement!!! ¬†The hubby and I went to the doctor on Friday for our anatomy ultrasound for Little Monkey. ¬†We opted not to find out the sex of the baby that day. ¬†However, we decided to plan a little surprise reveal for ourselves. ¬†We had the nurse write down the sex and place it in a sealed envelope along with the ultrasound photograph of “the goods.” ¬†We then took the envelope along with a large empty box to Hallmark and asked them to fill the box with either pink or blue balloons depending on whether Little Monkey was a girl or boy. ¬†Yes…the Hallmark employees knew before we did! ¬†They wrapped the box up beautifully, and when we opened it…SURPRISE!!! ¬†Our friend, Justin, was gracious enough to spend the day with us and document this special moment. ¬†We are so thankful for the many photographs he took and time he spent working on them. ¬†I think they turned out fantastic. ¬†Scroll down to see the big reveal for yourselves!

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Boy…or Girl???

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It’s a BOY!!!

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Opening the card with ultrasound from the doc

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Proof of “the goods”

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So excited for our Baby Boy!

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So in love and so excited for the newest addition of the Notes Family to arrive!

Photography by Justin Goldberg of Eudora Video Solutions

Were you surprised? ¬†Or did you “know” already?

As you can see by the photos above, Zack and I were clearly shocked! ¬†It was such a magical day, and I’m glad we decided to do something fun and a little different to reveal the sex of Little Monkey. ¬†We are so excited for our little bundle of joy, and cannot wait for our Baby Boy to get here in September. ¬†I already ended up buying him his first onesie today at Brooklyn Flea. ¬†I mean, come on. ¬†There was a panda on it. ¬†You can’t blame me.

We had such an amazing weekend, and it is definitely one we will remember.  We are so glad we have these photos to capture our surprise and excitement of this day, and I look forward to showing them to our Little Boy one day.

Hope you all had a fantastic weekend!

XO,

Gina

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