Baby #2 Announcement... The Story Behind the Photo
We all have that grand idea in our head of how we think something should go, and many times, more often than not, it goes the opposite direction. Sometimes we just need a moment to let our previous expectations go, but after that, if we can choose to look at the bright side, usually the outcome is even better than expected.
Case in point... we had been debating on how to reveal our "surprise" pregnancy announcement. Baby #2 was a surprise for us as well, and in case this was our last baby, we wanted to have something fun that we'd always remember. In case you didn't know, it took us over a year to get pregnant with our 1st baby so we thought for sure it'd take us equally as long. You can read our trying to conceive story HERE. We planned on "trying" for Baby #2 the following spring or summer, so when the news came that baby #2 had other plans, we were shocked needless to say! I also learned that I ovulated 5-6 days later than schedule, so God definitely had other plans up his sleeve and ultimately wanted to give us whirl at joining the #2under2club!
Our 3-month pregnancy mark was in December so we thought, how perfect to tie in the holidays and include the picture on our Christmas cards! What better way than to include our favorite jolly character at the Regency Mall in Omaha, NE!? We were headed back to Omaha for Thanksgiving so the timing was perfect!
This Santa is the real deal. He makes me believe. We plan on coming back every year to have our kids take a snapshot with him until he retires... but then Santa never retires so I guess that means we'll be back every year to see the most famous man dressed in red with a real Santa beard and bowl full of jelly!
After debating between various Christmas dresses, I landed on this precious plaid dress from Gap. You really can't go wrong with all the beautiful dresses out there for baby and toddler girls. Here is a super cute Buffalo Plaid Jumper Dress (on Amazon) that was a runner up! Here's another adorable Plaid Tutu Dress (on Amazon) that almost made the cut! Click the link to see even more adorable dress options!
This set of 5 Patterned Nylon Headbands couldn't be any cuter! And if you have a boy, I've got you covered too! This little plaid flannel shirt, casual bowtie, and suspender pant set is perfect for the holiday season! Both found on Amazon!
So I decided to come up with a saying on our letter board sign to make the big reveal and tote the sign from North Carolina to Nebraska. Thankfully this one was the perfect size to fit into a suitcase. This Rustic Wooden Letterboard Sign (on Amazon) is such a great size and I love the look! If you like options, you can also check out these new Double-Sided Letter Board Signs (on Amazon) which give you a grey felt side and a black felt side!
We came up with a few sayings, but settled on this one since the wording fit well, "Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is to become a BIG SISTER. Due June 2020". Now I just needed our 1 year old to look somewhat happy to be a big sis, posed with Santa to fulfill the vision I had created in my silly little brain (Yes, I'm well aware that I'm overly ambitious and created unrealistic expectations, but a girl can dream right?!) Hoping for any sort of semblance to a smile, even though E had no idea that she would be a big sister and how it would rock her world for awhile this summer. Joining the 2 under 2 club, and I'll take all the tips you can send my way!
As we stood in line to see Santa, we had to reminisce on our previous year's photo with Santa when our daughter was only 2 months. I can't get over how her cute chipmunk cheeks are resting on her shoulders!
As we got closer in line, we tried to connect with Santa, and our daughter smiled, waved, and looked like she was enjoying herself. "So far so good," I thought... My brother was also supposed to join us as he is our resident baby comedian and can make E laugh within seconds as he just has that special baby/kid connection. Unfortunately he wasn't able to come last minute so we knew we were on our own. Thankfully Grandma was a good second choice, and she rose to the challenge to fill in for the role of 2nd runner up baby comedian.
Then the moment of truth arrived... I let my husband walk Everley over to Santa while my mom and I stood behind ready with my best mom stash of silly toys and ready to bust out in song and dance to try and make her laugh, while snapping photos from my camera.
And then when all my hopes of having our daughter give her best 2 teeth grin while she adoringly sat on Santa's lap, looking proud to be a big sister... reality set in. The screaming started...and didn't end. The look of terror quickly arose in my daughter's eyes and no matter how many tricks we pulled out of our hat and no matter how silly we looked being "those crazy parents" trying anything and everything to calm her and bring out the smile we longed for, we'd have to chalk this one up as intense stranger danger...
It's safe to say she clearly wasn't having Santa, and all my hopes of one smiling photo with her big sister sign were crushed. Yes, yes, I know most 1 year olds have an intense fear of Santa as I have only seen 1 photo so far of like 100 where a 1 year old is actually smiling on Santa's lap. And of course I should have realized our daughter would be in the majority, but there's always that "hope"... If she didn't have the sign that said, "All I want for Christmas is to become a BIG SISTER", I couldn't have cared less that she screamed, and even thought it was funny to have one of those photos... But for whatever reason, I just really wanted her to smile and look happy to be a big sister (even though I know she has no clue what's coming her way in June) while holding that sign. And finally... to see the final picture...
Yep, clearly all she wants is to be off Santa's strange lap and in actuality, she probably really wants a baby doll instead of a real baby sibling...
Yep, that definitely didn't go as planned... After letting myself have a moment, I looked on the bright (and funny side) and realized I would just have to change my approach to our announcement and Christmas cards this year. After thinking for a moment, I knew what we'd say and decided funnier is always better than cute anyway. Just another mom moment that made me realize once again, I'm never in control, and to just embrace whatever chaos comes our way and make the most of each moment. We'll always remember and cherish these memories for years to come. And after posting our announcement, I realized this was honestly the best outcome we could have hoped for as this picture will bring us laughs for the rest of our lives.
Here's the front of our Christmas cards... We meant to get fall family photos done but never got that far this year... Thankfully we passed around my camera while at the beach with a few other families and found a few winners in the mix!
And here's a screenshot of the back of our card where screaming E takes the spotlight of course!
Thanks to the most amazing Santa in all the land! He's worth making a special trip to visit! Next year he'll be holding our 2 babies, and I have and will continue to keep 0 expectations for what next year's photo will look like! Mark my word! Bring on the screaming children!