The Vargo family will be expanding January 2018 – we’re having a baby!
Can I just say, it’s such a relief to finally be able to share this with you! I’m 18 weeks along, feeling a little more like my(sleepy)self and still on the hunt for a non ill-fitting pair of maternity jeans (does that exist?). For those that have been asking, well, it’s official: The Scary Room is soon-to-be the sweetest little nursery. My heart skips a beat and I could cry typing those words.
Truth be told, we have had many false starts on The Scary Room, having initially hoped to dive into it early last year. We always said, if we’re so lucky, this is where the baby room will be. (Eventually, you know, when we’re ready.) Welp, we were ready a while ago, but as months passed and those frustrating tests continually churned up a single pink line, so The Scary Room sat. It sat and it sat, and eventually, we agreed, maybe we should just get this room in order. Maybe it (us?) needs a fresh start.
This past winter, we turned our attention towards new electrical, a dreamy closet and trim repair. We worked with our heads down and without rush, and when the room had reached its ‘starting point,’ still we yearned for another pink line. We convinced ourselves that the now Not-Quite-So-Scary-Room was still a happy place, a whole room for the dogs to laze in the afternoon sun! Meanwhile, I had became a human pin cushion for the better part of a year, having my blood drawn far more than I’d like to remember, juggling bruises between my arms. I tried acupuncture and choked down herbs; we both had countless tests run, and early morning drives to the fertility clinic became my new normal. Ultimately, I received a somewhat minor (but still scary to me) surgery – just in case it could help.
Although we’re still trying to wrap our heads around it, it helped! That, and the assistance of western medicine and a fantastic doctor (and lots and lots of leaning on one another). I share all of this, because it was a rocky road we kept mostly to ourselves, with only a couple of close friends in the know; they allowed me/us to vent, to feel sad and irrational and frustrated, but they also kept us grounded without ever making us feel silly or ashamed.
At one point, I received the most kind email from a reader. Randomly enough, she had seen both of us at the clinic earlier that day, and more than anything, she just wanted me to know that she was there – for coffee or commiseration, it didn’t matter. Reading that email, my cheeks initially burned with embarrassment, but in an instant, that same feeling was replaced with gratitude. I cried (which, by the way, was becoming a regular occurrence), and I shared her words aloud to Scott. Her small gesture – and yet, really, it felt so huge – lifted our spirits, and it’s one that I’d like to extend to any of you. If you’d like to talk privately, you can lean on me as much or as little as you feel comfortable with, or feel free to leave a comment sharing your story if you’d like. No matter where you are in your journey, happy or sad, confused or frustrated, I’m happy to lend an ear, because goodness knows, I needed it, too.
We are so, so excited to expand our family of five to six(!), and our hearts swell thinking about Jack and Chunk nuzzling with baby. Libby has quickly become another one of my appendages, sleeping as often as she can in the crook of my arm, in my lap or atop my head. We pinch ourselves every day, letting out spontaneous squeals or just squeezing one another’s hands. Over the moon doesn’t even begin to describe it!
My question for you, if you’d like to chime in: Do you have any favorite books to recommend? I picked up this one after several recommendations, but would love to know of any others!
I’m just SO happy for you!!!! That little baby has won the parent lottery. All of my most sincere good wishes to all 5 of you! Enjoy the adventure. You’ll blink and she’ll be 20 and off to college again. Sniffle?
Oh my! I am so happy and excited for you. Congratulations to all of you! This is great news. <3
So so happy for the six of you! What wonderful news after your long ordeal. I always wondered but never would have asked about the possibility of children given the love y’all have poured into making a home.
Congratulations and all the best for the remainder of your pregnancy!
Looking forward to hearing as much as you want to share!
First time commenting here but I’d been following you guys for a while now… CONGRATULATIONS! I truly wish you ALL the best!
Congratulations, so happy for you! I’m a couple weeks behind you (with my second), so excited to follow along with your journey. I also wanted to chime in with a side-note on maternity jeans…inset panels. Look for the jeans with those and they are much more comfortable until late in your pregnancy! I’ve had luck with Gap.
yes, this! Also sometimes called side panels (i think these are the same?). i’ve had luck with old navy, but they tend to slide a bit during the day. Still comfy though!
I lived in Old Navy maternity clothes. They were comfy and stylish. I never felt like I was wearing maternity clothes.
I loved maxi dresses!! Or wrap dresses with boots in the winter. Forget pants! ;-)
Congrats!!! So happy for you all!!
Gosh this is so exciting I could cry! Congratulations!!!
Congratulations!! I’m so excited and happy for you guys!
Congratulations From a long-time follower! :)
Congratulations and I send all the love and good vibes to your family. I’ve been reading your blog since it was still just about your yellow brick home and I have to admit – I definitely choked up reading your news! So, so happy for you and I wish you all the best on your pregnancy! I am so happy to hear your wonderful news!
Congratulations! I’m a long time reader and although I don’t typically comment, I just wanted to say thank you for sharing your struggle. I really feel like not enough people talk about it! We are expecting our first as well and must be due close to each other because I’m just a smidge over 18 weeks. Thankfully, we didn’t have to go as far as having any procedures done (we ended up conceiving after a few cycles worth of fertility medication) but I know what you mean about feeling like a human pin cushion and that disappointment month after month of the single pink line and the frustration that goes along with it of why your body can’t just do what it’s “built” to do!
On a lighter note, I’ve had success with the Motherhood Maternity Indigo Blue secret belly fit skinny jeans (full panel which I prefer to the inset panels although the panel does slip down a little every once in a while) and I’ve heard great things about the Jessica Simpson jeans but haven’t tried those myself.
Congratulations again and I cannot wait to see the nursery you guys put together!
Thanks for chiming in, Jess, and a huge congrats to you! I’ll have to look into those jeans, I haven’t heard of them (and I’ve found I prefer the full panel as well – so comfy!).
I just had my first baby in March and the Jessica Simpson jeans from Motherhood Maternity we by far my favorite pair of pants! The panel didn’t slip and the stretch denim was so comfortable. I wore them for a few weeks post partum too!
Oh, and congratulations of course! It’s a crazy whirlwind but a pretty special one!
Good to know, I’ll have to look into JS!
Completely agree with the Jessica Simpson maternity jeans. My daughter is now 8 weeks old and I am still wearing them, they are just that comfy!
So cool, super happy for you guys :)
Congratulations! Your post makes my heart so happy. Struggling through infertility to start my family was the hardest time in my life. I’m sorry you had to go through that. Who knows if it’s true, but I like to think it has made me a more patient and grateful parent.
Amazing news!!!! Congrats!
Congratulations! This is such exciting news!!
As someone who spent about 2 years struggling with infertility and recently shared our own good news (16 weeks along!) I really appreciate your honesty and candidness. It does feel pretty lonely sometimes, and even if it’s only internet strangers it helps lift the spirits a tad knowing you’re not alone.
I’m waiting for all the jeans suggestions because I’m still rocking my old jeans with the rubber band trick!
Congrats to you, too, Mallory!
This is great news!! Best wishes for the family!!!!!!
A huge, huge congratulations to you both. I’ve been a reader for years and years and so it feels like a friend this morning sharing this beautiful wonderful news. Crying.
This brought a tear to my eye. Thank you, Melanie.
Congratulations!! This is going to be such an exciting time!! Cherish every drop of the good (and bad) of pregnancy. There are days when I actually miss it. I knew the baby was safe and protected by me. But, even 16 months later, it is a heck of a good time…even with little sleep!!
I like to think of myself as a pretty laid back pregnant person and mom, so I didn’t go crazy on the books and research (unless it was important things like a carseat or stroller, etc). I did not want to drive myself crazy with all the things books tell you. My favorite book to start with was “The Girlfriends Guide to Pregnancy.” It was VERY factual and hilarious! After that, I joined BabyCenter and read the message boards. Mainly I was there for the hilarious crazy, but there was a lot of helpful information because SOMEONE is bound to post about something you are experiencing. And for an actual medical book on pregnancy, I read “Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy.”
After (or right before) the baby is born, I HIGHLY HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend “Wonder Weeks.” It will explain a lot of what your baby is going through developmentally and hopefully have good solutions. I have been reading it as my daughter has been growing and there have been so many answers, even if the answer was just giving me the information to understand why we were so clingy the last few weeks.
So happy for you guys!
Happy to have these recs! Thanks, Heather!
There is also an app for Wonder Weeks that is useful.
Congratulations! We loved Harry the Dirty Dog, Giraffes Can’t Dance, Is your Mama a Llama? — you really can’t go wrong with any book!
News doesn’t come sweeter. I am so crazy excited for you!!!! And that announcement? Gah. Simple perfection. Love you!
Love you xx
CONGRATULATIONS! So happy for all of you!
Congratulations! As someone that did all the poking craziness, thankfully only roughly once and a half, to get to my two 15 month old kiddos, when some people tell me “oh the pregnancy was 9 months!”, I sit there and do the math of “yes, the pregnancy was 9 months, but the ish before!…”
Books for the kiddo that are great are ANYTHING Sandra Boynton. Seriously, if you’re going to read books over and over and over, her stuff is not that annoying, especially Snuggle Puppy :)
But for reading now, I wouldn’t stress over reading pregnancy books (that’s why you have great docs!), skim some “how to successfully keep everybody upright the first year” kind of books, rather, focus on reading for fun :D Maybe start a long series, the Sue Grafton alphabet or Poldark, that you can put down once the baby comes, and look forward to getting back into once things calm down, and trust me, they do :)
Best of luck, try to stay as calm and chill as you possibly can, and have fun eating ALL the foods!
Good advice. We’re definitely not stressing, but I love your suggestion of starting a long series to keep my mind occupied. What’s cozier than a good book in bed?
After the basic pregnancy guides, my most useful pregnancy books were The Panic-Free Pregnancy by Michael Broder (an OB-GYN) and Expecting Better, in which journalist Emily Oster takes a look at the research behind pregnancy assumptions.
The Happiest Baby on the Block should have been a short essay, not a full-length book, so borrow a copy to take a look at.
And for the baby, my daughter loves Jane Foster’s board books. She can easily see the graphic, high-contrast drawings, and as she began to recognize and name things, the simplicity worked well. They’re interactive books; there is no story.
Expecting Better is great. A little outdated now, but (not as much as most pregnancy books and) great.
I tend to just lurk but had to say congratulations!
T$! It’s so great to hear from you! Thank you!
HOORAY!Very exciting news! I am also due in January with our first (human) child. It was also a long journey of frustration, tears, and several doctors for us. I can’t speak for the maternity jeans as I haven’t even looking into them yet. It’s been all elastic waist bands for me (thank you linen pants and leggings), and one pair of jean shorts that magically still fit.
I will be anxiously anticipating nursery sneak peeks and promise to not totally copy cat off of you. ;)
Awesome, congrats to you! And I’ve been living in a pair of linen pants as well. :)
CONGRATULATIONS! It’s such a wonderful milestone to reach as a family.
We’ve been through the crazy ordeal of needles, tests, and drugs several times successfully and have recently launched into another campaign to add another, possibly final, child. It’s so worth it, it really is. I refused to talk about it when we started trying to conceive our oldest but I’ve grown to see how strengthening it is to share our story with others because our situation (pregnancy loss, medical intervention, etc) is FAR more common than most people believe.
Like other commenters, we highly recommend most Sandra Boynton books as well as the Pantone Colors board book, classics like Goodnight Moon (sometimes being able to recite books from memory is useful while driving with a sleepy toddler), all Llama Llama books, and Goodnight Batman (we have a major Batman enthusiast in our house)
Thank you for these suggestions! And agreed, we sort of felt like we were all alone, until we opened up a bit more about it. One of my friends put it more bluntly – doesn’t everyone need a doctor’s help to get pregnant these days?
SO utterly excited for you both! This is great news and I hope everything moves smoothly along. Congrats!!
OMG OMG OMG! Congratulations!!! So excited for your family!
Congratulations!!! I remember those days or yearning for a second pink line well. It took 2 years for us to conceive our first 10 years ago, then another round of treatment for our second 5 years later, followed by an oops baby that is due any day. Trying to conceive is such a weird mix of excitement, disappointment, shame and hope. How awesome that you’re willing to chat with others going through the same process. Best wishes for a happy and healthy pregnancy!!
How exciting, congrats to you as well, Katie!
is there anything sweeter than a pregnancy announcement? I don’t think so. So happy for you! I loved “Bringing up Bebe,” “You are your child’s first teacher,” and “Heaven on Earth.” Motherhood, gap, and h & m for maternity clothes, though early on I just wore a hair elastic wrapped around my jeans button so I could get more use out of them. Best to you!!
I’m out growing the elastic trick! Thank you for those suggestions. Just placed a big fat order at Gap!
Oh I’m so, so happy for you! How have you been renovating through the first trimester?! I remember being so, so exhausted. You are amazing! I know the yearning for a baby- I waited years for my sweet little guy. It’s hard and amazing and you’ll be such a good mom! Congrats!!!
I was pretty much sleep-renovating, haha. The exhaustion was real! Thank you!
Congratulations! Such exciting news and even sweeter knowing the extra effort required.
congratulations!!!! so excited for y’all!
I felt so very deeply for you guys when people were poking at you about the Scary Room. It was pretty easy to guess this might be going on, and my heart was going out to you. Glad for you to get to experience this miracle now, which you will appreciate all the more after all the heartache and waiting.
As for books: I loved Simplicity Parenting, and think you will too!
This is so sweet, thank you, Summer.
I’m so thrilled for you two! I thought maybe the IG story last week about the cabin was starting out as a pregnancy announcement! Your cabin is awesome, btw! But a BABY, TOO??? CONGRATS CONGRATS CONGRATS!
Haha, we have so much to tell you guys! The lake house is coming soon!
Haha I was going to say the same thing about the IG story :) Congratulations guys!!! Such exciting news!! I’m due in December with our first and have been doing the rubberband trick and it’s no longer working now…! AND I’m too lazy to go shopping and try on jeans/pants! My friend lent me her clothes and so far the H&M maternity jeans are so comfortable – although I think their sizing runs small.
I have just been reading the weekly/daily emails from the Ovia app and Babycenter app.
And for baby books… my absolute favorite is Each Peach Pear Plum! I can still recite it from my childhood :)
One more thing :) If you decide to register at Babies”R”Us, they offer FREE parenting classes. I’m planning to take breastfeeding, infant CPR, and baby care basics! Nice if you have one close by.
Who knew?! We haven’t gotten to the registering phase yet, but good to know – thank you!
Congratulations! So excited for you!
This might help with the maternity jeans. http://www.merricksart.com/2016/02/the-great-maternity-jeans-hunt-part-1.html I got some maternity AG jeans from ThredUp with my last baby and they were awesome, and only $30-$40.
The best baby book to read is Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. My 4 kids have all been good sleepers, and I think this book is a big part of that.
I second this rec for Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. In particular, his recommendation for an early bedtime (my kid is three and still goes to bed between 7 and 7:30) is really valuable. We put her down and still get some time to relax together. Like all sleep books, it makes everything sound easier than it actually is, but we found that the information he gives tracked very well with our daughter’s development and sleep habits.
So wonderful for you!!!! Weird how I do not know either of you but this announcement made me genuinely happy for you :)
YAY! Congrats to you guys!
Kim & Scott – I am SO HAPPY for you guys!!! Congratulations!!! What a thrill. I hope you have a smooth and easy pregnancy and delivery. Sending love from Brooklyn. xo
Eeeeee!!!! I’m still not over the excitement of your latest house purchase, and now this! Congratulations you two (I mean you five)!
Congratulations! Like others have already said, I feel like you and Scott are dear friends and that makes me so happy to hear your news! I can’t wait to follow along with your little family of 6 :)
Biggest, happiest congratulations to you! Babies are miracles and yours will be so loved. I always call my daughter my “wished for one” and it makes our relationship all the sweeter.
As far as books go, I highly recommend Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth. No matter your pregnancy/birth/parenting philosophy, this book is wonderful. The first section is just stories of women having successful deliveries. The internet (and humans for that matter) is full of negative and scary birth stories. The end is usually, “I ended up with a baby so all is good,” but the bulk of the story is riddled with fear. Especially after a difficult road to conception, no one needs to be afraid or sure of disaster heading into childbirth. The most helpful part of my first pregnancy was reading those positive birth stories, facing the reality of the work before me head on, and allowing the worry and fear to rest with professionals. Admittedly, some of the stories were weird, but the positivity and peace gained were well worth it!
I love that, thank you!
I agree with this book recommendation 100%. It’s a great book, even in its weirdness. :) It normalizes childbirth, and in most cases, childbirth IS completely drama-free and straightforward.
I was going to recommend Ina May’s book too, for these exact same reasons, and hesitated for these exact same reasons! It’s super kooky in parts (to me) but overall I found it so refreshing to read positive and natural birth stories. Sometimes it seems like everyone wants to come up to you in the grocery store and tell you about their cousins’ friend’s sister’s classmate whose eyes popped out from pushing so hard, gave birth to a baby with a tail, and ended up in a 15-year coma from blood loss from their third degree tear (not a real story, but you know what I mean). It’s so nice to read about childbirth being a normal, happy event.
I’m not super crunchy but wanted to (and did) give birth without an epidural, so I recommend the Bradley book/classes if you’re at all interested in that route.
Lastly, huge huge huge congrats and hugs! I imagine sometimes it’s not easy to share your life on the internet with things like these.
Ha, that’s so true, Julie! Why is only the worst ever shared?! Thanks for the recs.
Congratulations!! I’m so very happy for your family.
Kim check out the blog – Reality Daydreams she has gone thru the same experiences as you and writes about it in her blog.
Congratulations!!!! My advice on the books is DON’T read any. Just go with it. I read ALL the books before hand and would try to implement strategies for naps and feedings and everything just made my baby frustrated. I just needed to pay attention to her and ignore the books.
Congratulations and thanks for sharing!
First, CONGRATS!!!!! How wonderful!!! Second, thank you for sharing! We’ve been struggling for 5 years and have been in and our of fertility clinics ourselves, so its welcoming to hear when success comes to all families in waiting. Best of everything for you guys, so so happy for you!!!
Ina May Gaskins Guide to Childbirth (also one for breastfeeding). Im a birth doula in Minneapolis and they are the 2 I recommend to all of my clients! So so inspiring and positive as a reminder that you got this :)
Congrats!! I am due with my second at the end of October, sending you good pregnancy vibes! As far as maternity jeans go, I recommend a belly band. It’s like a waist band that you can wear over your normal jeans unbuttoned and it holds them up! I posted a link to one below :)
Many, many, many congratulations to you all. All of the excitement and nervousness and …excitement will be a roller coaster ride but one you’ll enjoy (nearly) every minute of. Well, I haven’t been in a family way since the 90’s but What to Expect When You’re Expecting was like my bible at the time. I was such a nube a the whole baby thing and I didn’t even realize I’d need to have a pediatrician all lined up for the birth.
Best of luck as Chicago is an amazing place to be (I delivered in Evanston!)
Can’t wait to see the finished nursery!
Hip Hop Hooray!! Congratulations! What a special time for your family. Can’t wait to see the nursery and read about your adventures!
I thought this was going to be about your cabin, but this is SO much bigger!! Congratulations to a wonderful, expanding family. <3
We can’t wait to share about the lake house too, but this is just so much more exciting than that! More on the other house coming soon…
For information, in regards to books to read, I would tier information in three tiers.
1. your own personal instincts and what feels comfortable, works for your family and your baby.
2. Friends / experienced moms as a resource second, especially if you admire the way their kids are turning out and how they handle parenting. But only if the information you receive runs through your first tier.
3. Books, absorb like a sponge and tease out the pieces that work for you. I used parts of all these books in informing my motherhood choices. My favorites:
I read all the baby sleep books, full spectrum. This one was the only one that worked for our family (and I modified it a little):
Congrats, what exciting news! I too am expecting my first human child (we are parents to two dogs and a cat), early next year and here are some books people have recommended to be: 1. Baby Bargains (my friend said she spent so many hours researching baby stuff and 95% of the time they came up with the same result she did, so let them do the work for you!) and #2. Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. I have heard from a number of new moms that “What to expect” is not as helpful if you have actually been around kids some. Best wishes on this new journey!!!
Kim and Scott- I am over the moon happy for you!! I too experienced five years of disappointment wanting to have a child and Kalli was my miracle child then five years later her brother. You will love this child with a unique deep love that will give you a joy unknown to you now. And yes, this child has won the lottery! Blessings on your family!???
I LOVE hearing this. Kalli was definitely worth the wait – there’s no one as sweet, kind and giving as her! So happy she came into my life. :)
Congratulations! After years of pokes, surgery, and tears, our little girl arrived in April. While it was a long road to get here, it is so special to be able to tell my daughter how much we truly wanted her and what a blessing she is. It is all so, so worth it!
Congratulations!!! Such exciting news and a wonderful family to welcome a new little member.
I just started reading:
Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids
Payne, Kim John
It’s not about pregnancy but about raising a child in this busy, hi-tech world. So far I love it.
What good news! We also had to undergo fertility treatments and several years of waiting, but I’m typing this one-handed while my newborn son sleeps in the other arm. It is so, so worth all the waiting, shots, clinic trips, and invasive exams. Congratulations! For books–I found The Nursing Mother’s Companion to be helpful with breastfeeding, and The No-Cry Sleep Method gave me realistic ideas too. For reading with the baby–so far he loves Look look! Which is black and white. My favorite book to read to him is The House in the Night. It has a somewhat similar mood to Goodnight Moon, with lovely scratchboard illustrations.
Congratulations!!!!!!!! So happy for you guys. I’m just two weeks ahead of you at 20 weeks with our second kiddo- it’s just the best thing ever! You all are going to love this little human so much. It’s going to be fun watching you grow into these new roles! (Plus I can’t WAIT to see how cool you decorate that nursery!!)
Here’s my book advice: DONT read too many parenting books! There’s wayyyyy too much conflicting advice out there and parenting is just so personal and specific to your cultural background. Lean on each other and other mamas that you have around you and whom you respect. Particularly don’t read “sleep training” books when you are totally sleep deprived and you think you’re doing everything wrong on the sleep front with bebe. Haha- this is from my experience of picking up “The Baby Whisperer” at 2 am once and winding up a puddle of tears so my partner had to throw the book away!! Trust your instinct- it’s there.
For an excellent tear-jerking book for you to read to your little one I suggest “Wish” by Matthew Cordell. absolutely lovely.
Great advice. So far, haven’t really looked at a single thing besides our app, and we feel pretty laid back about it all (I think we’re just exhausted from the journey – ha), but just sort of wondering if there were some MUST READS out there. I’ll check out “Wish”!
Congratulations to both of you! Sorry to hear about your struggles but glad the outcome was positive! Looking forward to reading about the nursery. :)
So very happy for y’all! I too thought last week’s cabin announcement was going to be a pregnancy one. So this is just icing on an already yummy cake.
I stayed away from a lot of the typical pregnancy books because I found they made me worry more than necessary. I sort of went with an ignorance is bliss attitude. Try, The Pregnancy Countdown Book. It has short excerpts for each day…some educational, some fun and some funny. It was lighthearted which is what I wanted (and needed).
I also read Oh Baby the Places You’ll Go (which is taken by the works of Dr. Seuss) to the baby in my belly most days. It was a few quiet minutes for us. Time to slow the pace.
Congratulations! I’m so happy for you all and seriously impressed you were working so hard on the garden apartment during your first trimester!
I’m just happy THAT’S over, ha!
Hooray! So happy for you guys.
Jeans can be tough. My faves were by AG Jeans – they had a comfy maternity panel, looked amazing on me, washed well, and the best part – felt like pajamas while looking dressy. Worth every penny of the high price tag.
My favorite book was Expecting Better. It does a good job breaking down the actual studies that are out there for so many things, so you get factual info rather than just anecdotal info. The parts on waiting til 42 weeks to induce and parts on food poisoning were really interesting. (Did you know Cantelope melon has the highest rate of Listeria poisoning, which is the bad food poisoning? I didn’t!)
There is a chapter on alcohol use that is controversial and I just skimmed it. Other than that, huge recommendation for the book.
I love the parenting website http://www.janetlansbury.com
This has been my mecca for parenting info from day one and I think I’m raising a well balanced, sweet kid (so far!).
Oh I’m so excited for you guys. Big big congratulations!
Long time reader but first time participating. We just purchased our first house so have been visiting your site more and more, and after reading your great news thought I’d finally chime in! Congrats!
The Bellaband saved my life while pregnant. You wear your regular jeans and just add the band to hold them up. Hated every pair of maternity jeans I ever tried on and gave up.
“The SH*T No One Tells You” by Dawn Dais was a very (non-scary) funny read. It was my favorite pregnancy book.
I’ve been hearing about that book, thank you!
Congratulations! First, there are no great maternity jeans. Find some great leggings and dresses and go with it.
As for books, The Birth Partner is a fantastic read for mom and her partner (duh!). It really breaks down everything and has some “cliffs notes” at the end of each chapter which are a great reference in a rush. I also love Ina May’s books, esp if you lean towards natural childbirth. But even if you aren’t, they are still empowering (and amusing when you read about all the psychedelic hippie births in a bus on the side of a road)! The Happiest Baby on the Block is also a lifesaver!
hahaha, thank you for your honesty! I’ve never been a leggings person, but I’m thinking now might be the time.
Congratulations!!!!! So extremely happy for you guys!! We had 6 long years of what felt like torture with one lined pregnancy tests and two miscarriages. After trying everything we felt comfortable trying we decided to expand our family through adoption. Best decision we have ever made. Our son is such a joy. Two years later, out of nowhere, our second son was born!! A short 11 months later our daughter was born!! We now have a very full house and I couldn’t be happier. The time of grief I was so quick to get rid of makes me now appreciate all the small things my kiddos do. Every hug. Every kiss. Even the melt downs.
I don’t have any book recommendation but just a reminder that you are the perfect mom for your little one. Follow your gut. Each mom is different and great in their own way, following what they think is best. Just do “you” the best way you know how. It’s all we could offer our kiddos. Congratulations again!! So very excited!!!
I love, love, love this. So happy for you, and thank you for sharing this story!
congrats to both of you, and happy you are so happy!
Congratulations! I am also 18 weeks along and due in January with my first. It took us over a year to get pregnant so I know the struggle. I wish you the best of luck!
BIG congrats!!! Funny I was reading your blog post about the scary room the other day and thinking hmm, maybe it’ll be good for a nursery? SO happy for you guys!!
As for maternity jeans, i actually only owned one pair during my pregnancy two years ago, and i would NOT recommend it. Why? It was the skinny jean style with TINY foot openings. I don’t know why i didn’t think about it, but when you’re SUPER pregnant, the last thing you want is to bend over backwards (literally!) trying to find those dang small leg holes…and then trying to pull those over your legs when you feel like your body temp is 150 degrees ALL.THE.TIME. The struggle was real!
Luckily, i was pregnant during the summer time and rocked all the loose dresses that i mostly already own. :)
Congratulations! Such an exciting time!
We’re expecting our first due at the end of November, and so far the only book I have read was Bringing up Bebe (before we were even considering getting pregnant, actually) and it was great! One thing I will say, treat all pregnancy books you read as an idea or one possible way to do things. It’s easy to over-research and let so many differing opinions get into your mind, stress you out, and even confuse the heck out of you – trust yourselves and know that with some of these ideas and methods in your back pocket, you will do wonderfully.
As for maternity pants, I ordered two pairs from ASOS and actually really like them! I have also heard good things about Next Maternity, but I haven’t purchased anything of my own.
I’d recommend reading “Expecting Better” by Emily Oster. It’s a great read and has so much information that is often really hard to come by in terms of what pregnancy recommendations are true and based on evidence and which aren’t. It will help you feel armed with facts when deciding what to eat/drink/do while pregnant!
Also I’ve heard great things about H&M maternity jeans, and Madewell has maternity jeans!
Wow – CONGRATULATIONS!!! I know this journey well (in fact, you may not believe this but I am reading this post and writing this comment from the waiting room of a fertility clinic). I’ve been waiting for that second pink line for almost 7 years now and hope to be joining you soon as a mama-to-be! I look forward to watching your nursery unfold and possibly stealing some ideas for a nursery of my own.
Sending you all the love and positive vibes, Mackenzie! xx
Congrats & yay to both of you!! I appreciate your transparency in what must have been a very difficult year — on top of trying to share your renovations and all the questions they must have caused! Best of luck to all of you & sending you good thoughts from Michigan.
(I always loved Gap maternity jeans — the full-paneled version was like a giant hug around my belly!)
My best books:
For general “what the heck happens when baby shows up”
(there is also an Expecting version & Toddler version*!)
*REALLY recommend Toddler version! :)
Sleep/soothing book that REALLY worked for us!
yay, so exciting!!! Congratulations!
no books to recommend… just remember to trust your own intuition.
RE: Jeans – Gap full panel maternity skinny jeans…. trust me!
I ordered a pair last week! Hoping they get here SOON!
So happy for your family!!!! Congrats, this is fantastic news!
I’ve been following you guys on IG for a while then found your YouTube channel. I’ve never commented, but we’re in the trying phase so I just wanted to say congratulations!!! Also, if you guys have any spare time to document any of the journey, would love to watch more YouTube videos! (:
Awwww congrats! Such exciting news! Chicago is such a fun place for a little one too! Hope you’re feeling well! It’s definitely not as fun but I wish I had read more about breastfeeding and baby sleep before my little guy was born. I don’t have specific recommendations because I think everyone ends up finding their own groove, but just in general those 2 topics! Hope you’re feeling well!
I’m feeling almost back to my normal self! Renovating during the exhaustion was/is tougher than I expected, but no complaints, really. Thank you for asking!
Congrats! I too struggled with infertility with my two children. It took 7 years to conceive my daughter. She is about to turn 7 years old and I’m now pregnant with my second baby now (37 weeks!). Thank you for sharing a bit of your story and now your fantastic news! It will bring hope to many!
In regards to jeans, I found comfy ones but they never stayed up. So I resolved to wearing leggings ?
I have two girls (12 and 14 now, yikes) and their very favorite book was Little Fur Family by Margaret Wise Brown, although Brown’s book The Runaway Bunny took a close second (and I am still bummed I didn’t use some of the artwork from Runaway Bunny in one of their baby/toddler bedrooms). Our copy of Little Fur Family was covered in brown fur, which might have something to do with how it became a favorite. I think between the three of us we could probably still recite the whole book from memory if we put our minds to it!
LOL…I’m reading through the comments and realizing you meant books for YOU, not for baby! Haha. I lived and breathed Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way in the months leading up to my first baby. She came out healthy and 9lbs 14oz with an army of med students there to witness. Apparently a natural birth in a hospital (and with a baby that big) was a rare sighting in 2002! I know natural childbirth isn’t for everyone but it turned out to be perfect for me.
Any and all recommendations are welcomed with open arms! :D
Congrats you guys!! This is such exciting news. I hope the rest of the pregnancy goes well.
As for books, I actually wrote a blog post about my favorite books for early motherhood. Here it is if you want to check it out:
Congrats! Our sweet twins were born about two weeks ago after a year of trips to the fertility clinic, many needle sticks, pills, blood tests, invasive exams, and a small surgery. It was a tough road but it is so so sweet at the end, I sobbed when I finally held our babies and knew that the fertility challenges were over and a new journey was beginning.
Congratulations to both of you on this amazing and happy news!!! Any books on birth and breastfeeding by Ina may gaskin are fantastic!
Congratulations! Long time reader and first time commenter. Thank you for sharing your struggle. So sorry you had to go through that. My road to parenthood was a difficult journey with a year of treatment before our successful IVF. I have tears of joy for you. Parenthood has been such a wonderful gift and even more precious after the struggle to get here. As far as books, my partner and I enjoyed The Birth Partner.
This is definitely one of my favorite posts for so many reasons. :) You let it all-ish out. Proud of you Miss V. You already know how uber excited I am about this! But still more congrats. Going to be in your faces ALL the time soon. ;) Kidding but not.
Thank you for being such a great friend throughout it all! We will take all of the winter-y visits you want!
Expecting Better by Emily Oster (helps you feel more informed about all of the things they tell you not to do)
& these pants!: https://www.ingridandisabel.com/bestsellers/1249-ponte-skinny-pant
They run big, order a size down if possible (I’m normally a 10 but bought the size 8). I felt silly spending that much on what are basically thick leggings, but my god I wore them every day and they are amazing. They stay up really well through all of your belly size increasing where other jeans I tried fell down a lot due to the weight of the fabric below the belly panel.
This is amazing news! I am due with our first in October. Thanks for sharing your story, one that isn’t commonly discussed but so prevalent, and I am so thrilled to hear about your family’s happy ending!
Aw! A huge congratulations, you guys! It sounds like we’ve been on a similar journey, except I’ve been a huge chicken about pursuing that human pin cushion part. I’m so happy for you guys and I’m dying at the thought of CC + Jack + baby photos!
Congratulations!!! So happy for you guys, I can’t wait to read the updates as they come on the blog!! :))
This is my first time commenting even though I have been following you for a while. Congrats on this exciting news! Very happy for both of you!
Congrat and thanks so much for being willing to share your struggles on the blog. Too many women struggle and think they are the only ones.
All the best!
Congratulations on your growing family! I had fertility issues as well when trying to conceive my second – we got pregnant easily but suffered a few losses and it can really be all consuming. Glad to see anyone getting to the other side of that struggle! I also found talking about it instead of going through it alone was invaluable and it makes me happy to see people such as yourself, with a public platform, reach out and make it easier for others to do so as well.
So – I liked H&M’s skinny jeans, full panel, the best. They were the only skinny jeans I tried that didn’t stretch out part way thru the day, get saggy and need to be continually hiked up. Gap was the worst offender when it came to this problem. I also had a great pair of boot cut maternity jeans from James Jeans. They were great for the winter. Also, my second was a January baby and I got thru the long cold NY winter without having to buy a maternity coat – just upsized a long uniclo puffer and it worked like a dream…
For parenting books I would say skip every sleep book because they will just confuse the hell out of you. Oh and my favorite post baby app is Wonder Weeks – check it out! Lots of very specific info about development and a great window into the world as your baby is experiencing it. For when the baby is a bit older I really found Love and Logic helpful – my Mom taught first grade for two decades and swears by their principles for helping parents help children learn how to be sane, functioning little people.
Best of luck to you – it’s a wild ride!
Eep! Sorry – just saw you ordered Gap stuff. I had lots of other maternity wear from them that was great and hopefully your jeans will too ?
Thank you for all of these suggestions! Right now, the H&M jeans are the only ones I have found and like, but they don’t have nearly enough washes or styles to load up on. And I’ll be cautious when my Gap order comes in… thanks for the warning! (And god love Uniqlo. I’ve snagged several of their flowy non-maternity tops, and they’re getting me through summer!)
I hate every pair of mat jeans at 18 weeks though I definitely didn’t fit in regular jeans anymore. By 26-27 weeks I revisited a few stores and found pants I once rejected suddenly fit with a slightly bigger bump.
My favourite (and crazy inexpensive) place for mat pants was Burlington Coat Factory. They were $10-15 each and I found some adorable coloured skinny jeans that were fantastic for fall/winter. The quality was decent too. I passed them on immediately to another friend and she passed them on again.
For the interim ~8 weeks where mat pants don’t really fit, I relied heavily on tights and tunics or sweater dresses.
Where is everyone buying their magical dresses?! Maybe I’m overly picky with dresses (have always been a jeans and tee kind of girl), but I love the idea of pretty sweater dresses. Thanks for the Burlington tip!
Congrats! My favorite book was So you’re going to be a dad” by Peter Downey. It’s hilarious, and a great read for moms and dads.
Congratulations!!! Just another reader that is so, so thrilled for you. Babies are made of sweetness and innocence and everything good, and just know there’s another person who will be keeping your family in her prayers. Here’s to a healthy pregnancy and baby!
Congrats on the news! I just started reading your blog posts recently. Thanks for the ideas. I learned a lot. Thanks and congrats again.
I’ve been reading your blog for so long I feel like I know both of you. I was genuinely so happy to read this announcement. I wish you guys the best and hope everything goes fantastic from this point forward! I can’t wait to see the nursery come together. Thanks for sharing your heart in this post. I know it’s encouraging to so many people.
I am so, so, so happy for you both! So much. I just don’t even have words. I always felt like in a way that we were going through the same journey because we’ve been married for near the same amount of time, I’ve followed you on the blog for years and years…you even sent me some cigar boxes way back in the day! I had always wondered if you two wanted kids (and totally appreciated if you didn’t, too) but am so happy that this has worked out for you guys. I have a say I am a bit jealous, because I too would be in this position if things would have worked out for my husband and I, but it didn’t back in June. Not this time.
Sending you lots and lots of love, so much more than you can hold in your hearts (that are ever expanding this moment now!).
I was reading (and will pick up again) Ida May’s Guide to Childbirth. A friend of mine recommended it to me and it hit all the right notes. Another (for later obvs) is No Drama Discipline by Daniel Siegel, a few women I follow on Instagram have read that book and it’s completely changed child-rearing for them (they have anywhere from 1-5 year olds) so it’s on my list too.
Oh, Miranda. Thinking of you! (And I remember those cigar boxes – so many years ago!) Great to hear from you.
If you want something funny, this website has weekly updates that are not too serious: https://alphamom.com/pregnancy-calendar-overview/
HUGE congratulations to both of you! So glad to hear you are healthy and happy.
Book recommendations for the parents: anything by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish, such as “How to talk so your kids will listen and listen so your kids will talk.” Really, really insightful and practical tips on communicating well with children from toddler age and older. It completely and positively changed the way I parent.
For the kids: author Mo Willems is solid and a welcome, clever reprieve from so many kids’ books. Also, an unexpected favorite of ours was “Polka Bats and Octopus Slacks” by Calef Brown.
Oh you guys, I am so thrilled for you! You are going to be wonderful parents. I can’t wait to see the nursery that you put together. : )
Wow – I am so excited for you and Scott. Fertility issues can be so frustrating, emotionally taxing and gut wrenching. Thank you for sharing something so personal with all of us.
When I was pregnant I read what expect when you are expecting and I thought it brought a lot of good info to the table. That said this was 7 years ago.
I’m so beyond excited for you guys! I’ve been reading your blog forever and had even wondered “is the scary room a future nursery?”
Congratulations to you both, what an exciting time!!!!
Eep! What fantastic news! I know it sounds silly, but it feels like I’ve been friends with you guys for awhile since I started following your blog so closely. I always knew there was a side of you that I’d like to know, but of course I understand you not sharing *everything* online. I’m just truly happy for you (and a wee bit jealous as always ?) Unfortunately I don’t have much advice to give on the whole baby front, as I’m not quite there yet in my life, but I’m always rooting for you! Go Kim and Scott!
Oh my! How exciting! Congratulations to both of you! I know I’m echoing some other long time readers when I say that in sharing your lives with us I feel like I know you. I definitely got a little teary reading this. I wish you so much joy and peace during this new journey!
Oh the BEST news!!! Congratulations to both of you. I was blessed with the easiest pregnancy so it hurts my heart when people struggle, but I do know as mom to a 1 year old that all your efforts and heartache will be so very worth it in the end. There is just nothing in the world like becoming a mom. Prepare for your heart to quadruple in size at a minimum. Sending you good vibes and lots of love! xoxoxo
Like others, I am feeling so much happiness for you and Scott this morning. We also, went through the infertility rollercoaster and for us, after many years of treatment, deciding to build our family through adoption was the best for our family. I only knew one other person going through IF at the time, and reached out through the “new” internet (18 years ago) for support from people who “got it” and guess what… I am still in contact with many of those women.
Book recs…it’s been a long time, so I’ll leave it to the newer moms.
Just remember, your baby won’t know if you don’t quite have the bath thing down or have a diaper blow-out that could have been prevented with better diapering skills…your baby just will know that you are there and love him/her to the moon and back and the little details will work themselves out.
Ohh, I am so happy for you guys.
How wonderful for you both, congrats.
Huge congrats to you guys! I went down a similarly long road with my firstborn (also a January baby) and what I termed “pre-partum depression.” It is such a lonely and sad struggle, and I’m so happy your struggle is over. And for what it’s worth, we are now expecting baby #2, who popped up out of nowhere so, umm, PSA to never assume that just because you were once infertile you will always be. ;)
I like Loft and Asos for cute dresses; Old Navy for jeans, but honestly, leggings will win 9 times out of 10!
That’s an excellent way to put it. Life seems so foggy when you’re going through infertility. Thank you for sharing, Jessica!
I want to reiterate the “thank you’s” for sharing your struggle. It took three years and a surgery for me to become a mom. Flash forward to now, a few weeks after welcoming #4, we have a houseful of kids we thought we may never see. Welcome to the crazy, wonder trip of parenthood.
I am so excited for you! I only discovered this blog recently yet I already feel so invested in seeing how your family grows and thrives! (Sorry if that sounded creepy, totally not the intention) Many happy wishes!
Stumbled upon your blog, idk how, but have loved your work! BIG CONGRATS on the baby! As a new father myself, it has been the most wonderful, beautiful and exciting experiences of my and my wife’s lives! You’re going to provide a great home for your little one!
First time commenter, and I just had to come and leave a congratultory message. It sounds like it was a very taxing journey for you to get to this point, and I’m sorry to hear about that. Love your work/blog!
Congratulations!!!! I’m so happy for you two! I appreciate y’all sharing such personal news with us. My husband and I struggled for 4.5 years to get pregnant and had 3 miscarriages during that time. We’re currently 24 (almost 25!) weeks pregnant with twins. I’m so very, very thankful and full of love, but it also doesn’t erase the months and years of pain and heartache. However, I do feel like we take things for granted a lot less than we would if starting a family had come easy for us. I really appreciate hearing about others’ journeys to create a family because it reminds me that no matter how lonely and isolated I felt, those feelings are understood by so many people. It can be a compassionate community! Sending you lots of love and good wishes for healthy pregnancy and baby!
Congrats, Katie! SO happy to hear that your story has a happy ending!
I’m not really up on parenting books, but when you’re ready for children’s books recommendations, let me know!
Congratulations! I’m expecting my first as well (11.5 weeks right now) and I can’t wait to see how to update the scary room into a nursery! So happy for you and your growing family!
Congratulations!! I am so happy for you both!
Congratulations!!! Wonderful news <3
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth
It’s my sleep bible!
Congrats! Is it weird I don’t think I knew your last name until just now? Kendi Everyday just had a baby and she posted lots of maternity stuff. Also super random, Jenny Mollen (married to Jason Biggs) posted on her instagram something about taking regular jeans to a tailor and having them sew in little pieces of elastic on the back or sides of the waist band
Congratulations to you and Scott! Reading these comments makes me weepy with the outpouring of love for you. You must be a puddle. Who could blame you? Thanks for being so generous with your audience/fans. Given how lucky we feel I can only imagine how lucky Baby Vargo will feel.
I’ve always heard the podcast The Longest Shortest Time is a very good & funny for a variety of parenting related topics (if you want an audio option).
Thanks for that podcast rec, Nina! I’m definitely going to look it up. And you’re so right – puddle doesn’t begin to describe. We feel like the luckiest people on the planet.
LST is THE BEST. I also love Mom and Dad are righting. Pregtastic was great during pregnancy too.
Congratulations. Thank you for sharing just a bit of your struggle with us- as someone who has been battling infertility for the better part of a decade, it always gives me hope to know someone else has beaten infertility, at least this time around. Can’t wait to see your nursery design, as I adore your style!
YES!!! I often read without comment but this deserves the biggest, happiest, congratulations to both you and Scott! Best wishes on a new adventure to come! xoxoxo
A huge, huge congratulation to your family of 5!! As a fellow pin cushion, I feel your struggle in my core. I was lucky in the sense that shortly after trying for a year they were able to pinpoint our problem and recommend IVF. I had a great first cycle and ended up with enough embryos I hopefully will never have to go through that again. My son is almost two and I’m jumping back into the journey next month. I’m excited and trying to be positive. But a voice in my head tells me I won’t get this lucky again. I was blessed enough to find a special group of women on an infertility message board who really carried me through the process and my early years of motherhood. I can tell you it is worth every needle and ultrasound! Thank you so much for being open about your struggles. There is too much of a silence around infertility. We were very private about it, but now I am not. And I have several friends turning to me now and it such a wonderful thing to be able to offer them support. Sorry for the novel. Just so happy for you guys. I loved reading Bringing up Bebe, Ina Mae’s Childbirth book, Happiest Baby on the Block and Babywise, which is somewhat controversial I found out after and didn’t work for us at all. But I found it valuable research.
Congratulations! I’ve been following your blog for a long time, and my husband and I just moved across the country and into our new house (which is feeling much more like home thanks to you guys!). Funnily enough, we’re also expecting our first baby this November. I’m so, so happy for you! I recently read, “Great with Child,” by Beth Ann Fennelly and I can’t say enough about how lovely it was to read. The book is a series of letters Beth Ann wrote to a friend while her friend was expecting her first child, but you’ll feel like she’s speaking directly to you. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and it could be the best short read of your pregnancy (at least it has been for me thus far!). Congratulations again!!!
Congratulations! What wonderful news. You guys will be great parents.
Congratulations!! Our fertility journey was a long one too, thank you for sharing your story. Bringing up Bebe was the only parenting book I actually read while pregnant, I LOVED the perspective it gave and have reread it now that I have a toddler. I also really liked the Baby Bargains book when it comes to pick out ALL THE STUFF and the Baby 411 by the same author. They are more reference books than ones to read straight through, but good to have sound advice. That is one of the hardest things about the new parenting journey, you hear all these things from different people and the internet so contradictory that you don’t know what you really need to what to do. These books steered me well. Best of luck!