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Needless to say, I am feeling very thankful on this particular Thanksgiving.  Henry is 12 days old and has made this holiday very special for everyone in my family.  I am so grateful for a healthy baby, an uneventful delivery, the amazing care I received and continue to receive and for all the love pouring in for us.  A huge thank you needs to go out to all my girlfriends  and family who have been incredible with their dinner drop offs, visits, daily check ins, help, advice and support.  And to you readers, for your sweet encouragement, excitement and advice- many thanks.

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This is an adventure, one that has turned my world upside down.  I’m sure it will feel right side up again soon, and an even better way than before.  I hope you all have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

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(Oh, and my For Her gift guide will be up Friday!)

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Gift Guides 2015: For Home

Hey everyone! So life with Henry has been crazy and challenging (he has “woken up” and is quite the handful at night) so I’m going to do my best to get you a couple blogs a week until we get into a sleeping groove. :) Figured I’d start with some fun gifts for the home (can you BELIEVE it’s time to shop for the holidays???)


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Henry’s Birth Story


Moments after birth!

This will be brief, and thankfully uneventful, but I wanted to document it here since most of my life story seems to be chronicled on this blog.  So much for taking a week off, huh?? I guess I just don’t know how to quit you.  Don’t worry, next week I’ll have the beginning of my holiday gift guides and curb the baby stuff a bit. :)

We were due on Sunday November 15th and I was sure I was going to be late.  So I went to bed Friday night after seeing the doctor thinking we had one more weekend to get prepped for baby. Well, cut to 12:30 p.m. when my water broke. After feeling the most bizarre sensation, I laid there going “Was that what I think it was? Is this really happening? Oh my God”- I woke Andrew up and told him and he was half-asleep and confused saying “What? Are you sure? Really? NOW?” and then woke up a little and looked at me and goes “It’s Friday the 13th!”   Earlier in the week we had come to realization that it was possible that Henry could be born on Friday the 13th AND we live on Crystal Lake (apparently that is where the Friday the 13th movies take place, not that I would know since I am too terrified to see them).  So I spent a couple days concerned I was about to birth a serial killer, and here I was heading to the hospital on that very date!

Henry’s Nursery

So here it is- finally- Henry’s nursery reveal! It’s taken a long time to complete, but I am so grateful to Wayfair for helping outfit this room with some seriously dreamy items! As you know, I went with a serene scheme aimed at calming not only the little guy but myself as well. I knew I wanted to do a scenic wallpaper and chose this Susan Harter muralpaper (Calmsden in Grisaille) to base the room on. It’s SO gorgeous, a real work of art. We want Henry to love being outside, so hopefully this starts him off on the right foot.

For the crib I chose the ducduc Campaign crib and I am OBSESSED. It’s the perfect mix of modern and boyish with the greyish stained wood supports. It’s an amazingly well made piece of furniture too.  The bedding here is from Rikshaw (quilt and sheet) which I have loved forever, and the mobile I got from a maker on Etsy (the brass finish is INCREDIBLE in person against the paper!)


Introducing Henry.


He’s finally here!  Our baby boy made his debut into the world on Friday (the 13th!) evening after a pretty uneventful labor (more on that another day).  I still cannot believe he’d real and he’s MINE (especially because he came out BLONDE?!?!)

His name is a mix of tributes, and one we loved from the very beginning (before he was even a real possibility).   I will never forget when we had to cancel our first round of IVF because I had a bad reaction to some medication and I was devastated and blaming myself and Andrew looked at me and said ” We need to give Henry the best chance to come meet us” and I lost it.  Ever since then, we knew we’d name him Henry (and as it turns out, we each have relatives named Henry!)  I wanted something classic, so it stuck even as we tried to find something more “unique”, but we knew in our guts this would be it.

For middle names we doubled it up as Andrew is actually Andrew Bradley Stephenson Gates and we wanted to follow that tradition.  Flynn was my middle name until marriage and my paternal grandmother’s maiden name. I’ve always loved it and knew I would give it to my first child either as a first name or middle name.  So that was super easy. :)  Stephenson is Andrew’s maternal side of the family (his mother’s maiden name and his dearly beloved Grandpop’s last name whom we wanted to honor in Henry).

Here’s our little family the morning after birth. And yes, I did wear pajamas and loved having them. :)


Heading home!


Meeting Baxter and Oliver with Nana and Daddy- they did SO well. Oliver is actually quite obsessed with him- he wants to be next to him ALL the time! Baxter has been ignoring him, exactly as I predicted.  But doesn’t seem mad or depressed, just non-chalant.


And we made it home just in time for his first Patriot’s game with Daddy.


Thank you for all your well wishes and prayers and good thoughts.  He is the picture of health- crying very little, eating like a champ and sleeping really well and thriving.  We are so happy.

I’m going to post his nursery reveal on Wednesday (it’s so wonderful) and birth story on Friday. So I’m not gone, just in a baby haze. :)