Friday, March 28, 2014


Madeline Ray, 18 weeks

Thursday, March 20 was the first time I ever felt Maddie move. My photographer and I were sitting in our news live truck waiting outside an apartment building that caught fire overnight. We were waiting for our next shot when I felt a little flutter in my belly. "Am I hungry?" I thought, "no, I just ate my weight in wheat thins, definitely not hungry." Then I felt the same feeling again... and again. I turned to my photographer and yelled, "I think it's moving in there!" -- he has kids, so I assumed he would understand my excitement, but I think me screaming at 5:45 in the morning really scared him.

I just sat there with my hands on my stomach and smiled. It was the weirdest and coolest feeling ever. I always wondered what it would feel like when other pregnant moms would have me touch their belly and feel the little kicks and punches. Now I know, and it's just as weird as you think it would be.

It feels like something is touching you very softly from the inside, but it's very quick. I don't think there's a way to describe it without sounding like there's an alien in there. But ever since it happened the first time, I can feel Maddie move throughout the day. Especially at night when I'm laying down to go to sleep. She's up tossing and turning trying to get comfortable, making me very uncomfortable. But I love it. I know the little "flutters" will turn to more painful "kicks" in the next couple months, so for now I'm enjoying her soft little touches. Those long legs of hers are already proving to be powerful so if you could, say a prayer for my ribs.

As for daddy, it makes his day to here that Maddie is moving around in there. At night, I'll let him know when she's moving, and he places his hands on my belly trying to feel something. Maddie is too small for anyone to feel the movements I'm feeling (at last check she's 9 oz and 6 inches long) so he'll have to wait a little longer to feel her. He can't wait!

I'm 19 weeks -- which is almost halfway there.

Can you believe it?! Where is time going? I would like it to slow down, please. We have a lot to learn and prepare for before Maddie's big debut in August. We're already setting up her room though, and her crib (thanks to dad) is up and ready for some sheets. We're hanging curtains this weekend, and moving some things around. Can't wait to share pictures when it's done!

I'm not craving anything and morning sickness seems to be gone. I got sick last Wednesday morning but that was it. I'm currently rocking some maternity clothes. And if I'm not in maternity clothes I'm wearing yoga pants or sweatpants. My jeans no longer fit and those belly bands DRIVE ME NUTS so I'm forever giving up on jeans. (maternity jeans don't come in longs unless you order them online and they cost $60+ which I don't have time for, especially since summer is right around the corner.) I've gained about 20 pounds since December. I needed that weight though, and I'm getting used to it. My face is filling out, and my hips are too. However, I'm hoping that stops... don't forget, I have to be on TV every day. Yikes!

Thankfully, my TV clothes stretch. Or else we would have major problems.


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Madeline Ray

The only name Nate and I agreed on out of both boy and girl categories: Madeline Ray. It's pronounced madi-lynn but spelled the old fashioned way. There's actually a million different spellings including Madeleine which we also considered, but we're not french so we decided to go with the American spelling.

Madeline doesn't run in the family and we just stumbled upon it while searching baby names. Ray does run in the family however, it's my dad's middle name and the name he went by. It's also my mother-in-law's middle name except she spells it Rae. Rae is the popular spelling for a girl, but I know my dad would be so excited to hear that she has a name after him. Side note: it's also Miley Cyrus' middle name. Don't tell Nate that.

Madeline is #75 and Madelyn is #13 on the top 100 baby names list from last year, but I didn't know that until now when I googled it. It's not an uncommon name and we knew that when we picked it. I know a lot of parents want something unique and different like these names here, but we didn't want something that we would regret later in life (I mean really, people are naming their children after food groups and cars.) My name is different and I love it and I would probably name my daughter Maxine too... but two max's would get confusing around the house and calling her Junior would be strange.

So what does Madeline mean? It's a form of Magdalene, from Saint Mary Magdalene. It means "tower" or "elevated, great, magnificent". Which let's be honest, if she has her momma's legs then tower will suit her perfectly. Obviously, she will be great and magnificent in whatever she does.

Saint Mary Magdalene
The spelling of her name also had something to do with the books "Madeline". I watched/read all of the books as a little girl and carried the doll with me everywhere. In the books, she's sent to a Catholic boarding school and out of all the girls she is known for being the bravest and most outgoing. She also had her appendix removed. It was a big deal.

We've had this name picked out since we started to discuss names at around 8-10 weeks. Madeline stuck with us and we knew instantly when we found out it was a girl that Madeline would be her name. We're not sure how we're going to spell her nickname yet. It could be Maddie, Mady, Maddy, or Maddi. There are so many options! I'll keep you updated on what we decided to do, until then I'll use the hashtag #madelineray

Have you known a Madeline before? Or a Maddie/y/i? How did they spell it?

Saturday, March 22, 2014

G E N D E R | R E V E A L

We are so excited to finally share this wonderful news with you! 

A BIG thanks to Danielle and her husband for shooting and editing this on their Saturday. They were so wonderful to work with!!! If you're in the Little Rock area and need a cute video, I'll get you their info!!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Boy or Girl? Whatcha Think?!

No we're not making the announcement just yet. We have our 18 week ultrasound on Friday and we'll make the big reveal on Saturday afternoon!!! Can I be honest and tell you this is all I've been thinking about since we first found out we were expecting? When you don't know the gender you really can't buy anything besides the big/expensive stuff -- which let's be clear, that stuff is NOT fun to buy. 

So besides wanting to buy every little girl outfit at the Gap, I also want to know what we're going to name this little gummy bear (side story: our doctor calls it a gummy bear, so I just go with it... it has to be some sort of medical term, right? right.) Anyway, once we know we can narrow down our list of names -- although I've been calling it by our favorite girl name and Nate's been calling it by his favorite boy name. So really... we already have our names picked out and ready to go. 

In order for you to guess, I need to give you the answers to some questions that some women swear by when it comes to predicting the gender. They're all wives tales -- so nothing is scientifically proven (Nate always has to add that in there) so let's get started and I can't wait to hear your guesses!!!

Key: Pink is for Girl, Blue is for Boy .... obviously. 

Heart rate below or above 140? We've been at 160bpm for the past several appointments. 

Is your bump high or low? low, but I really don't have a bump to look at. 

Almost 18 weeks
Did you experience morning sickness early in your pregnancy? YES. It started at around 8 weeks. 

Are you craving sweets or salty and sour? SALTY and SOUR. Give me all the french fries and pickles (not together... but ya know...) 

How's your hair? Is it full of body or is it looking rather thin? Full of body, y'all! and even if it was thinning out, you wouldn't be able to tell... Hashtag, Texas hair for life. 

What's the Chinese Calendar predict? Girl!!

Are you carrying extra weight? If so, where? My hips don't lie! They are out and ready to party. 

Is your skin dry or soft? uhhh.... dry? but sometimes soft. 

Sleeping on your right or left side? Sometimes I wake up on my left side, sometimes I'm on my right.

What's the Mayan Calendar say? We found out when I was 24 in the year 2013

Are you dreaming about the possible gender? No. I just dream about basketball at least 3-4 times a week. I really have no idea what this babe could be! So I need some help! Let me know what you think and we'll have the big announcement this weekend. We can't wait to share the news!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

I miss sushi: 16 1/2 weeks

Mother Nature lied and winter returned last week. She hit pretty hard, bringing lots of snow and ice with her to most of the south. Which meant I was going to be stuck outside for countless mornings doing hundreds of live shots warning folks to stay inside. It was bad. I even had a near death experience in the live truck. You can read about it on my Facebook page.

I was wearing FOUR jackets y'all. FOUR. Like winter coat "I'm going skiing" jackets. Two pairs of pants and socks. A hat and gloves. And I was still cold. Hashtag, thanks below zero windchill. Hashtag, bye. As much as I HATE standing in the cold (you can totally tell in that picture), it's days like this that make my job so important. 

Ok moving on. 

Did you forget that I'm pregnant? because I sometimes do. I almost bought a new swimsuit in my old size and sushi at the grocery store. Preggo women can't have sushi because fish isn't safe for the baby. I once made the mistake of googling pregnancy do's and don'ts and I could have sworn that I was going to have a miscarriage because of all the insane rules that I had already broken. For example, you can't eat deli meats unless you heat them. Or honey. Both of those are essentials in my everyday life. I refuse to give them up. Side note: the doctor says I'm very healthy.

We heard the heartbeat last week! 

160 beats per minute, which means a lot of you will probably guess we're having a girl! We don't find out if it's a boy or girl until next week at our ultrasound though. Boo. I've gained 14 pounds so far since we learned that I was pregnant and since my last appointment I've gained 4 pounds. Here's the chart...

Week 4: 138 pounds
Week 8: 142
Week 12: 148
Week 16: 152

Is it wrong for me to document my weight gain? Probably and I'm sure my mother will call me later telling me to delete it, but whatever. I don't care. The doctor said he would be comfortable for me to gain 50 pounds (and maybe a little more) because I'm so tall and I have more areas that will pack on the pounds. He took my breath away when he said fifty. FIFTY POUNDS. But then I thought about lifting 50 pounds and that's nothing. Plus, I'm going to rock it. Especially in outfits like this one... 

PINK. BLUE. YELLOW. WHITE. BLACK. The struggle is real y'all. 

Also, I've discovered maternity leggings. Life changing. I recommend them even if you're not pregnant. There's so much more room in there! I bought mine from the Gap. 

I don't have any cravings right now besides wings and ranch dressing. I also want chocolate milk. Delicious combo, right? Yes. My tailbone hurts like no other, my hips grow a part every day, and my sports bras no longer do their job. I like to nap, snuggle with Emily, and get neck massages from Nate. I also like Starbucks Java Chip fraps. 

And yes I want the whip!! Who do you think I am? Hold the chocolate syrup though... because that 2grams of sugar will ruin the drink. 

Oh and my belly button is still an innie. Because you were all dying to know...

ok, I'm outie... bye!!!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Southern Saturday//Sunday

The Roof Cafe//Little Rock
Bash this southern weather all you want, but I'm enjoying this 60-degree one day/30 degree day the next. Especially on a weekend like this. Yesterday we were able to do the fun outdoor things we usually do during warm weather (dog walking, brunch eating) and today we're doing some serious relaxing by cooking our favorite potato soup while watching Star Wars. It's raining and getting colder by the second, but these are the days I love.

Ham & Potato Soup. Recipe here. 
Emily doesn't enjoy the rain as much as her mom and dad do. She's waiting patiently for this winter weather to make a final exit... and by patiently, I mean she's bugging mom and dad every chance she gets. She's in desperate need of some tennis ball throwing and belly scratching. 

She looks much older in that picture for some reason. It could be the fact that she's finally growing into those big paws of hers. We've been working on obedience training lately and we can thank The Dog Whisperer on Netflix for that. Ceser Millan says if you follow "discipline, exercise, and affection" in that order then you should have a well-behaved dog. I totally admit to giving her affection before discipline, but that all stopped on Friday. And what do you know... it's like she was a completely different dog on our walk yesterday. She no longer can get on the couch or the bed unless we say so, and she has to "sit" before coming inside the house. Seriously y'all, in 24 hours she's made a complete change. 

We're still working on fetch though... She'll bring the ball back, but refuses to give it to us unless we have a treat. It's a pain, but we're working on it!

As far as a pregnancy update: I'm 15 weeks and a couple days! My belly doesn't look any different and I actually think I look a little smaller. I've changed my diet to things I used to eat before the pregnancy. In the first trimester I just wanted pizza and french fries. And to be blunt, after throwing those things up over and over I really don't have an appetite for them anymore. I'm currently obsessing over peanut butter and apples and strawberries with greek yogurt.

YUM so good! Although I still can't let go of my favorite gummies... 

This ginormous bag was only $10 at TJ Maxx so of course it came home with me. These little bears are expensive so when they're on sale you betcha I'll fork over some of change for them. I could probably eat them for breakfast/lunch/dinner -- and hey, I'm finally in that stage when I need to gain a pound a week!! So 3 pounds of these things will for sure help me get there, no problem. 

The rain is easing up and I'm assuming I'll get called into work if this stuff freezes over. Oh the life of a reporter! At least this was a perfect weekend while it lasted.