HeidiandJoshandtherealbaby's Blog

A walk and roll through the journey to parenthood

My audition for The Voice April 26, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — heidiandtherealbaby @ 7:54 pm

Thanks for all of your prayers, encouragement and uplifting comments.  I can’t tell you how they buoyed my spirits.

This is a quick post to let you know how you can all continue to pray for us.  We saw the doctor today and he found a “very happy baby” when he read the printout from my non stress test.  She is certainly thriving in there which is what we needed to know.  He also found plenty of fluid surrounding her and that I continue to progress in terms of labor stuff.  All great signs.

I did have to deal with the induction conversation with both of my doctors separately today.  So I’m glad that I felt confident in our decision to follow where we feel the Lord leading us.  I was able to explain that I understand their concerns and I’m aware of what they are, but that I’m not interested in induction.  That my body is clearly doing exactly what it should be to prepare to go into labor and I feel I need to honor that by giving myself more time to go into labor.  I also said that I have done everything I can to jump start this labor (including the intensive acupuncture) and that nothing has worked yet, which means to me that she’s just not ready yet and I need to honor that as well by giving her more time.

I think a big part of this experience has been, in part, to strengthen my voice.  It’s not always easy for me to speak up for myself,  especially if I feel I’m going against the grain, and that is going to have to change as we become guardians to a beautiful little girl.  I’m going to need a strong voice when it comes to protecting her and I think it had to start before she was born.

I felt respected by both of the doctors and they were supportive of us waiting through the weekend as long as I would come in to the hospital on Saturday for another non stress test.  I’m absolutely OK with popping in for a 20 minute test because it will make me feel better to know she is still thriving as well.

A weight has been lifted off my shoulders and I’m feeling like I walked through something that the Lord had specifically designed for me to walk through, and so now there is peace.

As we go forward through this weekend our prayer would be that I would go into labor and deliver a vibrantly healthy baby girl.  If you would pray this with us we’d be so grateful.  If we don’t have her this weekend, I believe we will be ready to face whatever comes our way at the appointment on Monday and we know that God will be with us then as well.

That’s it!  Here’s hoping the next post is filled with pictures of our daughter!


Heidi (and Josh too.)


The final countdown… April 24, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — heidiandtherealbaby @ 4:39 pm

Hey Everybody!

It’s been an eternity since my last post.  I kept thinking “oh, just wait til she’s born to write a post, it’s bound to be very soon.”  Ha!  My plans have been foiled by a little girl who likes her womb very much (only because she hasn’t seen the room we made for her that is certainly going to wow her.)

I am 5 days past my “Due Date” today.  I’ll tell you this… I kind of want to injure the guy who came up with the 40 week due date nonsense.  I would much rather plan for a 42 week pregnancy and have the baby show up early (I’m always prepared early anyway so it would be no skin off my nose if I planned for a 42 weeker and then the baby came at 39… I’d already be ready!)  But I digress.

I have had several really encouraging emails and messages from a lot of you and they have been so helpful in keeping me from going off the deep end.  I’ve found myself losing touch with reality at times over the last week or so.  I’m getting pressure from my doctors to induce my labor because they don’t like to go more than a few days, or a week at most, past the due date.  Then I’m getting pressure from others to just let nature take its course and go in to labor naturally, which means standing my ground against the doctor who is set to deliver this little one.  We’d prefer the latter to happen but there’s a lot that goes into it as you will read below.

We just got home from our latest appointment with the OB where they did a fetal non-stress test to see that her heart rate is good and goes through changes the way it should (beating faster when she’s moving, slower when she’s at rest.)  She was so active through the whole test that the doctor couldn’t really interpret the results the way he needed to but when I said she moved the whole time I was on the monitor (especially when Josh put his ice cold hand on there and talked to her) he said that explained the results and that a moving baby is a happy baby.

He also found that I continue to progress in terms of dilation, effacement, station etc. and that most women have to labor for many hours to get to where I’m at already.  So encouraging!  And he thinks I will do well once labor begins, which is so nice to hear.

But after all of these niceties are spoken we get the classic “if you were my sister, or anyone in my family I would have had you deliver that baby already…”  and “you two need to decide how far you’re comfortable going past your due date and you need to accept responsibility for the outcome”  and “the further past the due date you go the higher the chance of meconium being present (which if breathed in can cause lots of distress in her and could land her in the NICU) and the placenta starts to deteriorate which causes the baby some distress” and “once you go this far past your due date a lot of complications can arise that could lead to a caesarean which could have been avoided if you’d just done a general induction earlier.”

So.  As you can see, we’re getting a lot of info that could frighten first timers.  But it’s also peppered with lots of Coulds and Cans and Possibilities.  It just gets scary when the responsibility is in your court and you feel like you’re going to get judged or make the “wrong” decision and cause harm to this little baby you haven’t met yet.

I’ve been doing anything and everything (short of drinking castor oil) to get this labor to kick in.  Walking, yoga, acupuncture, massage and body work, certain foods and drinks etc.  But nothing has sent me into labor which to me means she’s not done getting ready yet (typical female, right?)  I got quite overwhelmed over the weekend and Josh and I decided to go “radio silent” for a bit so we could just spend some time together and talk through what was on the horizon.  It was a lovely weekend and it was so nice for me to unload a lot of the things I’ve been batting around in my mind onto him.  He was happy to share the load and has such a grounded perspective that it brought me back down to where I could function normally.

Here’s a picture of “The Salad” which is rumored to have magical labor inducing herbs in the dressing.  I ate this for lunch on Saturday and had a few hours of great contractions from it but then they went away.

Caioti's famous labor inducing salad... what a crock.


So here’s what we need.  We would love it if we could call on all of you to lift us up in prayer, which I have no doubt almost all of you are already doing, and ask the Lord to protect this delivery, to prepare us for however it comes to be, and that if possible we could go into labor in the next couple of days naturally.  This pregnancy has been nothing but perfect since its beginning and it would be such a beautiful blessing to see that continue through the delivery.  But we also know that if we get to the point that we need to induce, God is there as well, and that as long as this baby comes to us whole and healthy we will be forever and ever blessed.

On a more personal note I’d like to tell you that through all of this medical induction/fluid level checks/second opinions/scary stories conversations I have found that my excitement and my joy have been tampered with and replaced with a lot of fear about how to “hit the marks” my doctor is looking for.  I no longer get my hopes up each night when we go to sleep because it was too difficult to have those hopes dashed when I woke up each morning without having gone into labor (not because she wasn’t born, but because I’m one day closer to my doctor pressuring me into inducing through scaring me.)  It feels a bit like I’m eligible for a grand prize and I’m waiting around to see if I’m actually the winner.  Versus the reality that I DID win the grand prize and it just hasn’t been delivered yet.  I feel very much that my joy has been displaced because of everything that’s happened over the last couple of weeks with my doctors etc.  Which has caused me to feel like I’m spiritually failing in that I must not be trusting that our Father God is in control and that He has this.  It’s my flesh, literally and spiritually speaking, that’s causing my doubts and raising up fears.  And a couple of you have sent me beautiful emails that have been so encouraging and spiritually re-aligning and I’m truly grateful for the peace which came with them.

So if you’d want to add some prayers for my joy and excitement to be restored I would be forever grateful.  I know that when the time actually comes I will be elated to be in labor, eager to see her face and hold her in my arms, and overwhelmed by the love that God will show us as we become three.  But until then I’m certain I’ll be keeping a tight reign on my emotions.

To end on a happy note, here is a picture of me a couple of days ago.  Josh wanted me to take this look to the streets.   Tyrone thinks I belong in a Dr. Seuss book.  And Wallis is glad that at least my pants will catch the baby.

Dr. Seuss ain't got nuthin on me.


PS – sorry if you got a message that there was a post just before this one… I messed up and had to erase the post but the notice had already gone out.  You’re not missing out on anything… it’s all here!


March Baby Showers Bring April Babies (well, just one baby for us guys.) March 26, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — heidiandtherealbaby @ 4:54 pm

Things have been going at break-neck speed since my last post. We’ve had surprise visits from family, a new nephew a was born, a great baby shower, the completion of the baby’s room and all kinds of other pre-birth excitement.

I’m getting pretty big around the mid-section, but thinner everywhere else! Here’s the most recent picture, which was taken last night:

If Josh had let me know when he was about to snap the photo I would have smiled.

The baby shower was on March 3rd and it was 80 degrees and gorgeous. My mom and Wallis, my sister-in-law, both made the long journey out to be here to celebrate (and help out with MANY baby room beautification projects.) Yvette, Brie and Michelle threw a very chic and lovely shower with some of the best cheese (chocolate cheese?! Yes, please!) and desserts I’ve ever had.

Homemade EVERYTHING! Strawberry Cupcakes! Lemon Bars!!

And beautiful teacups:

Mom and Wallis did a bang up job on the flowers. They even got a big bunch of tuberose to bring a little piece of Maui to the shower.

Here's sweet Gran (my mom) with one of the beatiful arrangements.

Guests decorated cloth diapers (which will be used for burps and pukes and stuff) and little onesies. We also played a few games, and I opened a lot of presents!

Just prior to opening the gifts... I was conserving my energy.

I was particularly excited about this map paper, which apparently was just stuffing in the box and not part of the actual present. Thanks Rachel Kim!

After the excitement over the shower, we got to get excited about Emily having her second son! He’s a total looker, but who would have guessed any different? She’s such an inspiration to me… I can only hope to have such a beautiful birth! We can’t wait to meet this new little Burke.

Then, during a meeting with some architects, Josh was surprised by Alan who had flown in to be a part of the new construction project at The Last Bookstore. It was a great surprise! I remember surprising my mom on her 50th birthday (last year) and it was awesome. Those kinds are the best. While Alan was here he did a couple of BIG projects for the baby’s room. I couldn’t be more excited about how the crib turned out! Fully modified so Josh can be a “hands-on” dad! He’s on diaper duty. And he’ll be able to to get her in and out of her crib! We did a trial run with Hero and it went off without a hitch.

Here’s the baby’s room:

The crib! She's certainly going to be playing the princess and the pea with all that height.

Isn't it genius?! And what's doubly awesome is that I don't have to do any bending to get her in an out either!

The second half. Can't wait to put an actual baby somewhere in this room.

As of this Thursday we’ll be in the “safe zone” to deliver. She’ll be totally functional outside the womb in just a few days, but we want to keep her in there as long as she wants so she can get some meat on her bones. Really getting excited to finish the things on my giant To Do list so I can just rest and wait for her arrival.



The Twins January 27, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — heidiandtherealbaby @ 12:21 pm

I know what you’re thinking… another post, already?! It’s true, that is what you’re thinking AND this is indeed another post in the same week. I must have too much time on my hands. Onwards!

Baby is growing so well. I can tell because I had (ok, “had” is a very specific and possibly not an appropriate word to use here, perhaps “felt like I needed” might be a more appropriate turn of phrase to describe the situation) to buy a maternity support belt to help hoist up the belly/baby. It’s started to feel like she was hanging over my waistband, like literally falling down over my waistband like this:

I'm pretty sure this is where I was heading had I not purchased the support belt.

I also know she’s growing well because at random my limbs will fall asleep. Like this morning, I was laying on my left side and before I knew it my right heel was numb. So strange since I was most likely compressing the circulatory veins in my left leg, which was not numb. When I sit a the table to work on my computer, or eat, my legs like to go numb. I kind of like this feeling because I think “oh, little Baby is getting fat so she can get born looking healthy and cute, this is wonderful!” All part of the miracle.

She’s also working on her audition routines for Cirque du Soleil. She’s pretty adept at contortion:

She works on this move daily.

And I’m pretty sure she has her sights set on mastering something like this:

I get startled every time she practices this one.

I have to tell you this dream I had this week. In it I had given birth (but the dream started when we were coming home from the hospital so you’re spared the gory details) not to just one baby, but to TWO babies. One boy and one girl. And get this, they came out 3 months old. Oh, and they came out before the due date. So here we are bringing home not one but two babies, one of whom is completely unexpected (literally and genderly speaking,) early, and they’re 3 months old. We get home and I realize they came so early that I hadn’t had my baby shower yet and we didn’t have so much as a DIAPER in the house. About the time I’m realizing this I catch the baby boy with one of those Super Bounce rubber balls in his mouth as he’s about to choke. I pull it out and suddenly it dawns on me that we have not BABY PROOFED anything which clearly means we live in a Baby Death Trap where everything is lethal and we’re going to be thrown into jail in 5 minutes when some caring hospital worker stops in to see how we’re settling in with the Twins. I’m pretty sure I woke myself up at this point, it was way too dramatic to stay in that reality.

As you can see, things are progressing as they should. I’m having all the normal pre-baby anxiety about being prepared. I can’t wait to start having the Giving Birth nightmares.

Luckily my beautiful girlfriends Yvette, Brie, and Michelle are throwing me a baby shower on March 3rd. So if the baby decides to come early she can only do so after 3/3/12. That way we can have our home stocked with essentials (ie: diapers and a car seat since that’s all she’s really going to need when she comes home from the hospital… but at present those are 2 things we don’t have.) I don’t anticipate an early arrival because she really needs to stay put til she’s plumper. But who knows?!

Today the gray crib arrives! I can’t wait to take apart the espresso one (and carefully put it back in its original packaging to return to the store) and put up the new one! Then I’ll have to put Alan to work on dreaming up some glorious modifications. I can’t wait to see what we come up with.

Here are two self portraits of me from this week:

Coming up on HeidiandJoshandtherealbaby: “Craigslist… Good for More Than Just Hand-Me-Down Furniture”


Cribs and Photos. January 25, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — heidiandtherealbaby @ 12:25 pm

Hello Everyperson!

It’s been so long. So many things have happened. Here is the update…

We moved, again. We’ve been married just over 3.5 years and we have lived in 4 different locations. Par for the course with a Spencer and a Hazen in cahoots. We now live in a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom (woohoo!) apartment in Pasadena. It’s in a giant complex that was just built in the last couple of years. We have lovely appliances, flooring, central air, a balcony, room to move about, and space for a new family member. The complex is totally accessible, and pet and family friendly. And quiet, and clean. A big change from living Skid Row Adjacent for so many years.

We’ve enjoyed settling in and are slowly adding new pieces of furniture to warm the place up. It’s home for now, and probably a couple of years, and then we’ll outgrow it and we’ll be ready for something free standing (a house?!) But we’re happy here and we’re getting ready for Baby to arrive in just a couple of months!

We only needed to buy a crib and a rocking chair for the nursery. We’ve re-purposed other pieces of furniture that we had to round out the rest of her room. An antique farm table will work as her changing table (though we’ll need to put it up on blocks so Josh can get his knees under it so he can CHANGE LOTS OF DIAPERS.) He has said he won’t change a poopie one… ha. And I’d found and bought a great mid-century dresser off of Craigslist for our bedroom but it ended up being too small so it’s now in the nursery and looks so chic! We used to use a big woven seagrass bookcase as our dresser but decided to change things up in this home. So now the bookcase is actually a bookcase in the nursery!

I’d fallen in love with this great gray crib that I’d read about on some blogs that I follow. It was so simple and mod (fitting the decor perfectly) and the color was so soft and pretty. I thought it would be simple enough that Alan would be able to work with it and modify it so that Josh will be able to get the baby out of/into it. And it was SO CHEAP I can’t even tell you. A fraction of what comparable cribs are selling for. I’d had my eye on it for months. I’d designed the colors of her room around it. I was in love with it. I told myself I had to wait until Jan. 1, 2012 to purchase it (so I’d at least be buying it in the year that the baby was coming, and not the year before.) So I fired up the Internet on 1/1/12 and went to purchase the crib. I hollered out to Josh “I’m buying the crib!” because I thought he might be excited to know we were buying her first piece of baby furniture. He countered with “Don’t you think it’s a bit early? She’s not arriving for months. And even then she may not use it.” Good points, yes, it’s true she may not sleep in it for a few months even after she’s born since she’ll likely be in our room. However, I was chomping at the bit to actually start working on the nursery. Up to this point her room had been the office and storage room and I was ready to make a move! So I felt bad about wanting to buy the crib “so early” which actually felt like “just the right time” to me. I said “ok, I won’t buy it yet.” Then we had a quick conversation about how he made me feel bad for wanting to buy the crib so early and now the fun had been taken out of it. He then said “go ahead and buy it!” But it had already turned not fun.

Cut to 10 days ago when Josh and I are sitting down to eat at a restaurant and Alan calls to catch up. At some point he asks if we’d purchased the crib yet, Josh said that we hadn’t. Alan said something to the effect that he’d need to get some info about the crib in order to start planning some modifications etc. So suddenly Josh is on-board with the crib buying. That evening, fueled by the wind my father-in-law had put into the crib-buying-sails, I went to purchase the crib, only to learn that it was NO LONGER AVAILABLE.

I was so sad. I texted this info to Josh who responded with “What?! It was just there! You’re never going to forgive me now. Keep looking, it has to be somewhere!” It wasn’t available somewhere else. So I quickly got over it and ordered the espresso colored one. It came in 2 days and was a cinch to put together. The room is very sophisticated and kind of dark with all of the dark furniture, but I have plans to soften it up with curtains, pictures and linens!

Allow me to tell you what has happened in the last 5 minutes… I popped onto the website with the gray crib and found it AVAILABLE. What. The. Heck.

I’ve purchased it. It will be here on Friday. I will be packing up and returning the espresso one. Josh will be so thrilled.

In other news- I have had a really lovely pregnancy. The back pain I had for the first several months just magically disappeared one day and I couldn’t be happier about it. It looks like I swallowed a volleyball. Soon it will be a basketball, but honestly I feel pretty sure that I’m going to end up looking like a torpedo or submarine rather than a round basketball. I’m only growing forward (stubborn narrow hips!) Because of this I outgrow my clothes each week. Everything you think would be long enough no longer covers the area below my belly button because it’s so far forward. I’m often finding I have “exposed pelvic drift” (as opposed to “exposed mid-drift” as the young ladies sometimes sport.)

There have not been many pictures taken of me. Josh and I aren’t big picture takers, and we’re rarely in situations where people are snapping photos. But I have a good friend who demands a “belly shot” every other week so I have captured a random selection from her requests. Here they are:

This is Halloween in Carmel.

All pictures of me during this pregnancy make me want to change my hairstyle.

I'm in my pajamas so it's not the flatteringest of pictures but that's one crazy belly.

I plan on taking a new picture soon, like this week. And for sure this Sunday when we get dolled up for a friend’s birthday celebration. I’ll be posting those as soon as I have them since I will A) Not be in pajamas and B) Will have actually put myself together.

I have so many other things to share but I think I need to end this post here otherwise your legs will fall asleep from sitting to read for so long. I’m always looking out for you!



We’re having a… November 18, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — heidiandtherealbaby @ 11:39 am

video to share the news with you…

once I finally figure out how to post it…

wait for it…


And a big thanks to “Uncle T” and “Auntie Uncle’s Wife” for being part of our big night!

Now, down to business on coming up with a name…


Photo from the Confirmation Station September 6, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — heidiandtherealbaby @ 8:12 pm

One little baby Spencer is beat-boxing his/her way through development in my body.

The heart is the beat-box (currently 165 beat-boxes per minute).  Baby is the size of a raspberry (up from a blueberry last week!)  Dr. Nelson says the baby looks great, in the right spot, exactly the right measurements, Spencer-strong heartbeat.  I have one more appointment at the fertility clinic next week and then I’ll be “graduating” and heading off the following week to our (hopefully) amazing OB/GYN Dr. Dwight (who comes highly recommended by my acupuncturist and another friend.)  I’m 8 weeks along as of Thursday… let’s just call it 2 months to be fancy.  I’ve started putting on some weight (I’d like to blame it on the baby but as I’ve already mentioned it’s the size of a berry.)  Last week Josh said “you better slow down, you already look like you’re 2 months pregnant.”  A few minutes later I said “Josh, you do realize that next Thursday I’m 2 months pregnant, right?”  His response, “what?!  I thought you were like 5 weeks or something!  Well then you’re right on schedule.  Man this is going to go so fast!”

I also had a brief engagement with morning sickness for about 2 weeks.  I did not enjoy that.  Though I did have about a dozen people (professional and lay) tell me that it’s a good sign, that it means the baby is healthy.  So I said ‘thank you’ to the Lord and then pleaded for the nausea to go away.  He has been so gracious and merciful and I am truly grateful.  I’d sort of thought I was going to coast through this pregnancy with minimal pregnancy symptoms mostly because I knew that my mother never threw up in any of her 3 pregnancies and women tend to have similar pregnancies to their mothers.  I totally thought I’d just sail on through.  Then last weekend I saw my mother and she told me that though she never actually got sick she felt super ill during the first trimester of each pregnancy.  It’s probably a good thing I didn’t have this information before I decided to get knocked up.

And I’m uber sensitive to smells.  I already had kind of a bionic sense of smell prior to pregnancy, now it’s super human and I’ve been shoulder-tapped to star in my own super hero cartoon.  The most unfortunate thing about this is that I can’t stand the smell of our loft and I’ve tried all kinds of things to change the smell but nothing works.  We can’t get any circulation because all of our windows are on one wall and we can’t get any cross ventilation to happen.  We even have a very super air purifier… but I’ve become sensitive to the smell of its motor so we don’t have it on anymore.  And our downstairs neighbor is a smoke-aholic and it just turns me inside out.  It will wake me from a deep sleep when they light up.  I keep having visions of my baby smoking a cigarette in-utero.

So we’re looking for new digs.  This place has served us well for the last 1.70 years and we always knew it would be way too small for us to be in once the baby came so we’ve started the hunt.  We’d love to find a place in a safe neighborhood, totally Josh-accessible, a house would be amazing, some grass for Hero to play on and me to walk on (I’ve been longing to put my feet on some grass since I got pregnant) and a bedroom for the baby, and a second bathroom, and parking just a few steps from the front door (instead of half a block away).  These are the things we are praying to find in our next home.  We have time left on our lease here so it’s nice not to feel rushed into signing a lease on the first thing we come across.  We’ll really get to take our time and find something great.

I’m excited to be getting close to the 2nd trimester so we can start telling people (like our employees who are wondering where the heck I’ve been for the last 2 months).  Josh feels the same way since he’s the one who has to dodge the queries when he’s at the store.  He’s been very helpful through the last few weeks… emptying the dishwasher, cleaning up after dinner, he even cleaned the bathroom when I went out of town this past weekend!  What a great guy.

Here’s hoping you all are doing well and are ready for some Fall!!!!!


Heidi and Josh