Wednesday, January 2, 2013

In case you haven't noticed....... blog title changed. That's right, take a look. Those who know me really well have already heard the news and are slowly getting over their surprise and moving on to the excitement phase. Those who know me pretty well but not quite well enough to be in the first wave of announcements may fall out of their chairs. Me? Adam and I? Baby? Yup, that's right. Ten years into a wonderful marriage, we've decided to introduce a third party. Our baby(girl)bison will be joining us this May!! We're thrilled, so excited about babybison, and excited that it's not a secret anymore:)

Well, that's how I told you, my readers. Here's how we told some of the other key players in our life.....

Adam learns the gender

I learned the gender of the baby a few weeks before Adam did. He didn't want to know the gender until we knew all the tests from our amniocentesis were okay. So the day we got our final amnio results, I bought a pair of baby boots and lined them up with the many shoes that litter our front hallway. I really didn't think he'd notice that, so I also bought streamers and a balloon to decorate the apartment. But sure enough, as soon as he walked in the door, he said "So, it's a girl?" I asked how on earth he knew (the boots were black and white so I didn't think they totally gave it away!), and he said he noticed the liner of the boots was pink. Very perceptive, that one! I even got domestic and put up streamers on the windows- see them in the background?

Mom and Dad

Personalized menus at Sepia

Every year, in lieu of birthday gifts, we take my parents out for a fun Chicago day including a nice dinner. This year, we played a bit of golf on an unseasonably warm- but still chilly- day, then headed to Sepia for dinner. Golf was a lot of fun but I must admit I was eagerly awaiting what we had in store for them at dinner! We arrived and were directed to our table. As planned, the maitre d grabbed the "special" menus set aside for us with a quick wink in my direction. We sat down, and the waiter carefully looked us over and handed us each our personalized menus. Of course, only Adam and I knew they were personalized:) My folks starting reading the menu, my Dad in particular, noting some tasty appetizers. My mom was kinda quiet, looking things over. The subtle salutation at the top had not yet caught their attention so I gently nudged "what do you think about the menu" and my Mom quickly read it, looked at us in shock, read it again said "Really?" and got very excited. Those who know us know we've never talked about having kids, quite the opposite in fact. And our change in heart has been quiet- only a few of our closest friends knew we were considering kids and no one else. So my Mom was shocked but also so, so excited! Way more excited that I was expecting. My Dad was quick to follow and soon the waiter was over congratulating us as well. Later the manager came over to well wish. Sepia did a nice job with the celebration, with their enthusiasm, flexibility and extra touches to our dessert plates:)

Brother, Sister-in-law, Niece

Christmas morning run with Karin
We wanted to tell my brother and his family before we told my family at large, so we planted a shirt that my mom had made for me as a gift, pretending it was from Adam to me for me to wear on my run the next day. I made sure everyone was watching and opened the shirt. Garrett and Jill were shocked and confused. A good 10 seconds passed before Jill asked more questioningly than declaratively "you're pregnant??". We had them floored. A few beats later they recovered with the appropriate congratulations but it was a pretty funny 10s as they started blankly at us. What can I say? People are surprised when the couple who loves to travel to exotic locales and race destinations, live in the high rise on the lake in downtown Chicago and avoid all things kid decides to add a kid to the mix! (Don't worry- we'll still travel and race. We are lucky to have had many volunteers to baby sit already!)

Adam's Family

Since we delayed our announcement by a couple weeks to coincide with Christmas, I thought a gift would be a good way to tell Adam's family. So we framed and wrapped one of babybison's ultrasound pictures. Much like almost everyone else in my family, his parents were shocked. So shocked that it took a few minutes of "what is this an ultrasound of? a kidney? why are they giving us a kidney?" before they literally took the picture and compared it to ultrasounds of a previous grandchild on the fridge, before they realized what was going on. Fun times. His Mom laughed and clapped, his Dad cried. We then called his sisters. For his younger sister Nora, who was unfortunately home sick with the flu we enlisted the help of our niece to inform her mom. She was excited and got out of bed for that news. For his older sister Maggie who was taking care of our two sick nephews we just outright told her. Much like her Dad, she cried.

The Rest of My Family

We enlisted my niece and only current great-grand child in the family, Gwyn, to help spread the good news amongst my family. She had the wonderful idea of making a shirt that said "Jingle bells, jingle bells, cousin bison on the way" and wearing it to the Xmas Eve gathering. Now our Xmas celebration deserves and will recieve its own post, so suffice it to say here that every year we have a different themed meal and this year was Anne of Green Gables, which is why some of us are intermittently "in costume" in the pictures that follow. No, I don't usually wear lace dresses and hats.

"Say cheese!"
The first to arrive were my Uncle Scott, Aunt Kelly with two of my little cousins and my adult cousin Anna-Lisa and her boyfriend Jason. Immediately upon their arrival, I gathered them together to take a picture by the tree under the guise that I wanted a picture of all the costumes. In reality I thought we better make the announcement quick before either Kelly or A-L noticed my small but present baby bump! So we all assembled and Adam said "Say cheese!" He then made a nice show of checking out the photo to make sure everyone looked good. During this time, Gwyn covertly uncovered her T-shirt. Then Adam said we needed to re-do it and "say cheese" ensured one more time.  He again said the photo was sub-par and but time instead of "say cheese" he said "everyone say Val's pregnant!". Only a couple people repeated him and then a confused silence filled the room. The epitome of a pregnant pause (ha, ha, I'm too funny). We then had Gwyn turn around and reveal the shirt. I believe my Aunt Kelly was the first to catch on but soon everyone knew and there were hugs all around. I even- much to my surprise- got a little teary eyed. It was just so fun and great and the enthusiasm from my initially very confused family was so wonderful.

"Say Val's pregnant!"

We ended up telling pretty much everyone else individually. Next was my Grandma Nelson. Then my cousin, Karin, who had what may have been the funniest response to Gwyn's shirt which was "is someone getting a puppy?"and then her response to me once she realized I was pregnant "I thought you weren't doing the whole kid thing?" which I reminded her was exactly her response to me roughly 10 years ago when I told her I was getting married. I told her the marriage thing- though not entirely thought to be my scene at the time- turned out really well so I expect this next adventure will as well:)

The big surprise of the evening (besides our announcement itself) was how quickly my Grandma and Grandpa Monson figured it out! We showed them Gwyn's shirt and they immediately knew we were pregnant! They weren't even surprised! And out of everyone in my family, the only person who made name suggestions was my 94 year old grandfather! Hilarious!

Right after we told them

I hope our families had as much fun with "the big reveal" as we did. I'm sure every pregnancy announcement is exciting and wonderful, but I did enjoy the additional twist of folks being so shocked. We've been so vocal for so long about not wanting kids.....right up until the past year when we started thinking we did, and then we were really quiet about it right until Christmas:) Telling people about babybison has really been one of the most fun experiences of my life thus far!


  1. Ahhhhh that is so exciting! Congrats to you both!!!

  2. This was a fun post to read! I love seeing your little baby bump:) Congratulations, Val and Adam!!!