JoMarie’s Baby Book

Good Morning!! I hope you are having a great week so far. I have been excited to share something with you that I am really loving right now! I have previously mentioned that throughout my maternity leave that I started a journal for JoMarie. It was fun to document this special time in our lives for her and I have always loved to write. I want her to be able to look back someday and read what life was like for us when she became our first baby. There were many times throughout my pregnancy and first months with Jo where I wondered what those specific stages were like for my mom. So I wrote it all down for Jo and I…What Nick and I are like, who our friends are, how much love and support we had from our families during this time, what’s important to us, what some struggles have been, what we did with her in her first year with us, and just for her to see what a little miracle she was and is to us. And to be honest, my brain and memory has gone down the drain since having a baby so writing it all down for myself as well 😉

Writing in a journal for Jo to read someday has been fun, but it was time for a baby book!! As much as I wish I was creative and had unlimited time to sit and decorate the perfect baby book for my daughter, that just is NOT the case. I wanted a simple, cute, and special book to fill up! I received the perfect baby book from Polka Dot Print Shop and it is everything I wanted in a baby book and I have had such a fun time filling this up with so much goodness.

There are pages to fill in that I would have never thought of to add to her baby book and I am SO happy the book includes these pages. For example, there are pages for me to write our birth story and a also write a little note to JoMarie about our first moments together. There is also a page for Nick to do the same. Pages to tell her how Nick and I meant, our love story, how we reacted to finding out we were expecting this sweet little baby. They have literally thought of everything! There are also pages for each month where you can put the cute monthly photos and what stages your littles are at during that month. I fell in love with the style of these books and knew I had to share!

Polka Dot Print Shop also has toddler books and bump books that are so neat!! Welllll I know I have many mamas and expecting mamas who would love these books so for the next two weeks, you can use code MyGoodness to receive 15% off your book. You can find them in Instagram, Facebook, or right on their website. I know many of you will love these books as much as I do.

Have such a great rest of your week ladies!! We are taking a long weekend to soak up our last days of summer and I am really looking forward to some family time and relaxing! Thanks for stopping by today 🙂

JoMarie’s Birth Story

One month. It has been one month since we brought the most beautiful little human into this world and I still can’t believe it! This last month has been incredibly exciting, emotional, exhausting, and beyond anything we could have ever imagined. Life has an entire new meaning for us and this little girl has fulfilled us with overwhelming happiness. JoMarie is sitting in her rock n play next to me right now and I could just look at her for hours, and I have 🙂 I appreciate your patience and understanding with MyGoodness blog as I have most definitely been taking this time, to enjoy this special time that I will never get back. Today I am sharing Jo’s birth story. I can’t tell you how many birth stories I read and loved when I was pregnant so here is one more to put out in the blogging world, not to mention I am documenting this for my own memories too, so please brace yourself, this will be a long one! Our little lady arrived in a timely manner, on her due date, December 4th, 2016 with deep blue eyes, a head full of dark beautiful hair, and weighing 8 lbs exactly, and 21.5 inches long. Healthy baby girl!

Four days before my due date, I went to my weekly appointment to leave a little discouraged when I was told I still was not dilated, my cervix was still posterior, and progress wasn’t happening. The following days were filled with emails and text from my husband throughout the day asking how I was doing (his way of asking, IS THIS BABY COMING YET?!) we would chat each night before bed telling each other that MAYBE tonight would be the night she would come. I will never forget that feeling of anticipation waiting for this little girl to come join our world.

On Sunday, December 4th, Nick and I woke up and decided we would have a low key morning and go to our late church service at 10:45. Around 9:30 I started having some different sensations but I wasn’t convinced they were contractions as I was not having the tightening in my belly that I had read and been told all about. I figured it was late pregnancy uncomfortableness so we went on with our morning. By the time we got to church, I realized the pains were increasing a little and seemed to be happening often. Nick suggested maybe using the app we downloaded to time these, JUST in case they were contractions. Whatever it was, they were 2-3 minutes apart but were only lasting between 15 & 40 seconds. It wasn’t until we stood up to take communion and I started walking that I thought “oh boy!” as we walked back to our seats I told Nick we should probably go. We did our Sunday Aldi trip for groceries for the week after church and the pains were starting to intensify. We got home around 12:15 and we were on the way to the hospital an hour later after calling the nurse line and being told to come on in just to get checked.

We got to the hospital a little after 1:30 and after explaining to the nurse what I was feeling, she didn’t give me much hope this was IT. To our surprise, she checked me and I was dilated to a 4! This was IT!! We got admitted to our room and the contractions were uncomfortable but tolerable. My family was on their way from Iowa and only family and a few close friends knew I was in labor.  Things were progressing on their own and rather quickly. Contractions were around 1 minute apart and lasting 2-3 minutes at a time. Nick was so great, coaching me through each contraction. My goal was to hold off as long as I could before getting an epidural, if I did end up getting one. I didn’t love the idea of being restricted to my bed so I knew I wanted to hold off as long as I could. Each contraction was coming on more intense than the last and it was getting hard to focus during them. I remember telling Nick “okay after this one I’m done!” “after this one lets order the epidural” “I don’t want to do this to myself anymore” and I just remember Nick telling me “okay, after this one babe!” THEN we would get through that contraction and he would tell me “you got one more!” He knew my goal and kept me going as long as I could. The last time they checked me, I was  dilated to a 6 and I got to the point where I just couldn’t imagine physically having the energy for these contractions that much longer and not to mention, possible hours of pushing. Bring on that epidural!

The amazing grace 😉 of the epidural was given to me and I was checked immediately after, to be told I was dilated to a 9! A NINE! In the movies and everything I read, you push when you’re at a ten and I was at a nine, holy cow! Wellll that is not exactly how it worked for me. Have you ever heard of the term “labor down” Well, we hadn’t either, but let me tell you, I’m so glad we were being made aware of it now. Long story short, since you have an epidural, you can see what your body does naturally to get the baby lower once you are dilated to a 10. We decided to do that. I “rested” for an hour after I was dilated to a 10 and when I was checked after that hour, my nurse decided we should labor down for 1 more hour to see how low my body will naturally take the baby and then it was time to push, so that is what we did. I couldn’t take my eyes off that clock. Five minutes before we knew our nurse, Doctor, and my Mom would be coming in the room to be with us as I started to push our baby into this world, Nick and I held hands and prayed and this brought so much peace to my heart. Let’s do this!! I was ready!!

I was very blessed with a quick labor. I started pushing, and I pushed through 4 contractions, 11 minutes, and JoMarie Evelyn Elioff was placed on my chest at 9:36pm and I locked eyes with my daughter and fell so deeply in love. She is a healthy little girl which is all we hoped and prayed for. I am doing well too! I think I cry at least once a day BUT happy tears 🙂 I just look at her or Nick holding her and it literally is too much for my heart to handle. I’m in a constant state of awe and shock that I get to be this little girl’s Mommy.  I get to show her the world and raise her, and love her forever! Now I get it. Now I get what that motherly love is and I have never been more in love with Nick. JoMarie has put so much grace on our hearts and so many things just do not matter anymore, while other things now matter more than ever! God is so very good to our little family and I’m so thankful!

There you have it! Please excuse the typo’s and ramble that I’m sure go on in this post 🙂 I wrote it over two days, during Jo’s mini nap sessions and I am not taking the time to go read it and edit my mistakes. Thanks for stopping by today and bless you if you made it this far in this post! Happy FRIDAY!!! Now I’m off to go cuddle this little sweet girl.

Welcome JoMarie!

Good Morning! On December 4th at 9:36pm our world took the best possible turn we could imagine as Nick and I welcomed our daughter, JoMarie Evelyn Elioff, into the world!

I have thought about what to say in this post for the last few days and finally decided words just cannot describe the love and happiness this little sweet girl has put in our hearts! The last almost three weeks have been spent staring at JoMarie’s little face, learning new things about her each day, playing with her dark dark hair and rubbing her oh so kissable, chubby cheeks.

My contractions started around 9:30 the morning of 12/4, which happened to be Jo’s due date. I had similar contractions the week prior, so I was not convinced this was the real thing. Nick and I went to church and did our normal Sunday grocery shopping, timing the contractions as we went. After we got home, I labored at home for awhile before the nurse line told us to head in around 1:00 or 1:30, I can’t remember exactly. Things progressed rather quickly and before we knew it, we were holding the most beautiful little girl we had ever seen! I’m excited to share more about JoMarie’s arrival with you all and some details on our first moments together, more to follow 🙂 For now, I’m going to continue snuggling this baby girl and enjoying this time with my little family. I hope you all have such a wonderful Christmas and Happy New Year!

Thank you all so much for the well wishes and love on Jo’s arrival!! Also, thank you for your patience with the blog and I will get around to answering all your emails soon!