Hi guys – wow, what a whirlwind the past week has been! So far motherhood is everything you guys said it would be – amazing and overwhelming at the same time. <3

leaving the hospital with newborn

As you guys know, our daughter Riese was born on Friday afternoon via scheduled C section, and we headed home from the hospital on Monday afternoon. It was exciting to take her home but also terrifying – I thought that pregnancy hormones were an emotional roller coaster, but man postpartum hormones are even more intense. I cried the entire car ride home because I was so scared about having her out in the big scary world. The love I feel for her is just so, so intense – it’s like my heart is outside my body now, and that feels really scary and vulnerable.

It’s crazy to think that just one week ago she was still inside me (I still can’t believe that I actually GREW this little human in my body – it’s so weird/cool) and that we were enjoying Thanksgiving with my family! One last belly photo with Matt from Thanksgiving Day:

thanksgiving 40 weeks pregnant

We were so glad we made the call to move the scheduled C section from Monday of last week to Friday – obviously, we were lucky our gamble paid off and that she didn’t come early, but when we were leaving the hospital on Monday of this week we looked at each other and were like “wow, we are SO glad it’s not Thanksgiving Day right now.” There’s no way we would have been up for that physically or emotionally, and I would have been really sad to miss out on it.


I started having some early labor sensations on Thanksgiving Day – nothing crazy, but it basically felt like period cramps that came in sporadic waves. My parents hosted Thanksgiving for myself, my brother (in town visiting – I was glad to get some quality time with him on Wednesday and Thursday before the hospital stay), and my grandmother, and when I went into the dining room I started cracking up – my mom had put a towel on my chair, just in case! Too funny, but smart!


We had a wonderful Thanksgiving – we came early and stayed late, and it was really nice to have one last relaxing adult-only meal. The food was delicious, too, of course. :) Matt and I weren’t officially assigned any dishes this year for obvious reasons, so the cooking was all my mom with assistance from my brother, and Matt once we got here! I was glad my last big pregnancy meal was not a nauseous one so I could really enjoy this delicious food. I went back for seconds on the turkey, gravy, and mashed taters!


Dessert was also awesome – I have more of a savory palate in general but I LOVE pie and ice cream, so this was basically my ideal dessert. :) A slice of both pumpkin and apple, mmm!


It was such a lovely day – thank you for staying in there long enough to let us enjoy it, Riese. :)

Friday morning was surreal – we didn’t have to be at the hospital until 10, and I wasn’t allowed to eat or drink anything 8 hours before the surgery at 12, so Matt woke up and made me breakfast in bed at 4 a.m. before we went back to bed for awhile. I was all ready for one last awesome night’s rest but my period-like cramps had started to get more regular and painful overnight (not anything intense/consistent enough to go to the hospital early for, but it definitely didn’t give me a restful last night’s sleep).

It was a beautiful morning so we got up in time to take one last walk just the two of us with the bump in tow.

last pre baby walk

My very final bump photo! 40 weeks and 1 day.

final 40 week pregnant belly photo

And then, it was off to the hospital! Scheduled C sections are so weird because obviously you aren’t doing the whole “OMG GET ME TO THE HOSPITAL THIS BABY IS COMING!!” thing – we were like “well, I guess we should head out in a few minutes to go have our baby…” It was even weirder arriving at the hospital and checking in. “Um, hi. I’m here to have a C section?” So surreal.


I’m going to work on writing out a birth story as soon as I can, so stay tuned for that! (Seriously, though, how does anyone get anything productive done ever with a baby?!) Over the next month, I want to try to check in a couple/few times a week with updates, and I have a few fun recipe posts lined up for you guys for December, too, so keep an eye out for those. Thank you for your patience as I start to attempt to figure out a new blogging routine! Right now it’s 1:45 a.m. and I’m writing this post with a milk-drunk Riese asleep on the breastfeeding pillow in my lap. :)

Stay tuned for more – the birth story and an update on the first week-ish at home will be coming soon! And in the meantime, I’ll keep sharing photo updates over on Instagram, too, so follow me over there if you’re interested in some daily snapshots.


  1. 1

    Congratulations, mama!! You look glowing in that first picture – it doesn’t look like you just birthed a child :)

  2. 2

    So happy for you and Matt! I’m a mommy of three and I can feel you. The first days/weeks are… intense! But those little finger, that smell is worthy. The best advice I can give you (something I didn’t do btw) rest all you can. Everything can wait. Enjoy your baby. Congrats again!!
    * I follow you since many years ago. I think this is the first time I comment here :)

  3. 4
    Irene Penn says:

    Congratulations Anne and Matt. Beautiful name. If I remember correctly isn’t Riese your middle name. It’s a really nice name. Love to the three of you.

    • 5

      Good memory! Yes, Riese was my maiden middle name – I dropped it when I married Matt. We always said if we were ever fortunate enough to have a daughter we’d want to name her Riese!

  4. 6

    Congrats!! I love her name. And yes, such a whirlwind of emotions, isn’t it? I’m so excited for you!

  5. 7

    Congrats! Such an exciting time. Although it’s been two and a half years…I feel like it was last week that we were driving to the hospital to have our babes. I walked up to the counter and told the check in nurse “I’m here to become a MOM!” Eeekk. Hands down, best day ever! The best advice I got when I brought was my kids home is “you don’t have to do anything but keep them alive”. Fed, clean, loved. Don’t try to be super Mom. Take all the help you can get and rest as much as you can. Everything else can wait. And shower every day. It helps. Enjoy these first few months. They are amazing!

  6. 9

    Loved this post!!

    I had the same walking-into-the-hospital-not-in-labor experience because my water broke first and it was so weird!!

  7. 10

    Congrats Anne!! I love the name and that last pre-parent pic of you and Matt, so cute :)

  8. 11

    Ahh, so happy for you! I love the name Riese, and can’t wait to learn more. That’s great that you and Matt were able to enjoy your Thanksgiving dinner!

  9. 12

    Congratulations! And the post-pregnancy hormones are for real. Be prepared – they will hit off an on for a little while. I heard (from an actual research scientist) that they can affect you for up to 4 years. Oh joy. Thanks for popping in :) The best help for my hormone riddled self was going on walks and just being in the sunshine. Nursing babies just make life hard, but it is ok and only last for a small portion of their life.

  10. 14

    I’m kind of nervous for the post partum emotions because I’ve started to get more emotional over the last week and I know it’s only going to get worse. I’m usually not a very emotional person so it’s been an adjustment to have these crying spells over insignificant things. And my husband looks at me like – where did my calm/rational wife go? (but he understands that this is part of being pregnant). But I guess I will just have to roll with it when the post partum emotions hit as there is no avoiding it!

    I am glad that everything went so smoothly with Riese’s birth. I’m looking forward to reading your birth story and about your first week at home. One of my best friend’s had her baby the same day as you but she was 10 days overdue and had a 10#2oz baby girl!! I was a 10 lb baby so I hope our baby does not take after me!!!

    • 15

      I totally hear you – I’m normally pretty even keeled emotions-wise so this has been so different for both me and Matt. But like you said, you just roll with it. :) 10 pounds – wow! I can’t imagine!!

  11. 16
    TrackBuddy says:

    LOL! I still haven’t figured out how to get anything done with kids, and mine are 7 and 3. If you figure it out let me know. :-D

    In the meantime, my mom always tells me to “lower your expectations for what you can get done…and then lower them again.”

  12. 18

    Welcome home with your new baby girl! xoxo

  13. 19

    Congratulations!! :)

  14. 20

    How exciting!! And I think that is just TOO FUNNY about your mom putting the towel down. Hilarious!!

  15. 21

    Congrats!!!! Post-partum hormones are crazy! I would just cry, for no reason… My husband would just look at me like, what is going on??? Haha. TOTALLY NORMAL.I feel like nobody talks enough about this. I know that I was definitely not prepared. I remember leaving the hospital with a smile on my face, but on the inside I felt like such a mixed bag of emotions and I just wanted to cry. I have a 5 month old. I cannot tell you the last time I felt like I had a productive day. Getting 1 thing done is like a miracle.

  16. 22

    Being a new mom is wonderful and also super challenging. Be gentle and forgiving of yourself!

  17. 23
    Laura Swanson says:

    Bahaha to the towel on the chair! I was overdue and scheduled for an induction with Emma, and we decided to go to the movies the day before the induction date. My husband was SO concerned my water would break all over the seats at the theater!

  18. 24

    Congratulations again Anne! How to get things done with a baby? Babysitters. lol.

    Um, real talk, I also got a maid service and have never regretted putting that into our budget. I know the beginning is rough but the uncontrollable crying will end and I hope you are enjoying lots of baby snuggles!

    • 25

      Maid services are worth EVERY penny in my opinion. Matt and I started getting one monthly when we first were living together and have never stopped… and it is THE best.

  19. 26

    Congrats!! She is wonderful. We are almost 8 weeks in and still figuring things out! It seems like you are getting the hang of it. Enjoy this time with her, it will go fast!

    Productivity has definitely dropped, but you learn to do things in small bits of time between feedings!

  20. 27

    Congrats! She is absolutely beautiful! That momma love is intense, I remember just staring at my new baby and crying because I loved him/her so much.

    Also, I am always so amazed when people accomplish anything the first couple weeks home. That first week, I took it as a win if I managed to heat up food before eating it lol.

  21. 28

    You will never be productive ever again! I’m 10 months into it and still barely find time to blog :). I would much rather hold baby girl while she sleeps or build endless towers with kid blocks. It’s totally worth it, though. So happy for you guys!

  22. 29

    Congratulations! I’m so happy that everything went smoothly for your delivery and Riese is here, happy, and healthy! (And adorable to boot!). This period is HARD. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Your body is a mess. Your emotions are an even bigger mess and you love your baby so much it terrifies you and makes you cry tears of joy at the same time. It’s a rollercoaster ride. You will find your new normal and get things done eventually, but do not worry about it right now. Right now all that matters is feeding that baby, snuggling her, and taking care of yourself. You are already doing a wonderful job!

  23. 31

    Congratulations! You’re doing great! Try not to worry too much about what you’re getting done because this is just a season. Just try and enjoy her and take care of yourself as much as possible!

  24. 32

    I love all of this. Congrats!

  25. 33

    Congratulations!! Praying for a continued smooth recovery for you and a great healthy start for your new bundle. <3 Take all the time you need away from this space…we'll be here when you come back. I was glad that I did that my first few months postpartum.

  26. 34

    Congratulations!! She’s adorable, and I love the unique name, especially since it is a family name. Much luck on your recovery and figuring out motherhood. You are and will be an amazing mom! I cannot say from experience, but just take it day-by-day, even hour-by-hour. Know that mistakes will happen, but you all will find your groove. :) Looking forward to reading your birth story! <3

  27. 36
    Ellen McCarthy says:

    Congrats Anne & Matt, I never comment but have been reading for a long time. Your baby is the cutest! Lots of luck on this adventure.

  28. 38
    Roadrunner says:

    A wonderful post, Anne, thanks for sharing it. And congratulations to you and Matt!

  29. 39

    You look fantastic in your family photo! It’s like you’ve given birth ages ago!
    Isn’t it awesome? The awereness that you created this human? As weird as this feeling is it’s also so empowering.


  1. […] I shared in my Thanksgiving recap/whirlwind post last week, I started having some period-like cramps on Thanksgiving day – 40 weeks exactly – […]

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