Saturday, September 26, 2009

My Baby Story....

1 week ago today I was cleaning my house in a frenzy.....I couldn't scrub the floors, wash windows or vacuum carpets quickly enough because I knew it was happening but I was in denial. And I wasn't ready, I had 10 days to still prepare for a baby!
It had been a weird nights sleep where all I did was have weird dreams. I wasn't awake but I wasn't restfully sleeping either. Even a couple of times through the night I was sure I felt braxton hicks, 7am I had enough. I got out of bed where the braxton hicks continued. Off and on all day they would show themselves, sometimes hard, sometimes soft, sometimes consistently and other times I'd go a few hours and feel nothing.
Around 4-4:30pm Saturday afternoon I went to the washroom and knew things had "changed"
Kristen insisted it was now time to start timing these braxton hicks which were now contractions. But I still wouldn't admit defeat...I kept busy. Afterall the midwives had advised me to do JUST that. If you're in early labour keep yourself busy and distracted because it will get worse.
We headed to the grocery store to buy some bread, milk and orange juice, just in case this was real labour and we didn't have a chance to get groceries yet that weekend. By the time we got home it was around 7pm, the contractions were consistently every 3 minutes but not lasting too long. By 9pm I called the midwives...Ellen one of my midwives came to the house to check on me. I was dialted 1cm but progressing well so she suggested I take some gravol, have a bath and get some rest because Baby Hann was definitely going to be born in the next 24 hours.
I couldn't believe it......
I went to bed around 10:30 and by 12am I "knew" the contractions had changed, they were lasting between 90 seconds and 2 minutes only 4 minutes apart and the pain was something I had never felt before or could compare to anything. I called Ellen again who advised us to meet her at the hospital. To all our surprise when she checked me again around 1:30am I was 7cm dialated....yeah go figure.....
So after a couple of hours of hard labour I was finally able to receive an epidural around 3:30am and seriously for you women who had your kids without pain relief....WOW! You are on the highest pedestal I could ever have for someone. I applaud you!!!
Kristen took a photo of me "working" through a contraction....

After the awesome pain relief...I could actually smile

Around 4:30 the midwives broke my water and 7am it was time to push, at this point I had let the epidural wear off enough that I felt everything...yeah...everything definitely not to the point of someone who didn't have an epidural but I had insisted to the midwives from the very beginning that IF I had an epidural I still wanted to feel as much as possible without "all" the pain (I think I ended up with 90% of it....LOL). And over two hours later at 9:14am Sunday morning, Sept 20th we welcomed Jesse Blaine Manuel Hann into the world.
Blaine after my only brother and sibling
And Manuel after Kristen's grandfather on his Mother's side

This is Holly another one of my AWESOME midwives just as Jesse was born

And this is Ellen on the left and Lindsay on the right. Ellen was with me from the very beginning even though I hadn't had a chance to meet her at my regular appts up to this point. We were scheduled to meet on Monday, Sept 21st
On the right is Lindsay a student midwife who showed up after Jesse's birth to assist with his assesment and getting us ready to go home.

I cannot go on enough about how amazing these women are.
Supportive, encouraging, just exceptional people who I have the utmost respect and love.
And now that little Jesse is 6 days old, Mommy is recovering & adjusting well, Daddy is loving being a daddy and the midwives are still doing at home visits with me until day 10
They've been a Godsent, truly.
We are so blessed to have this little boy, I know its a cliche but he really is a miracle.
Thanks to everyone who sent gifts, well wishes, congratulations, the whole nine yards.
ESPECIALLY to those who sent food (Stephanie, Holly & Sandra), you have NO idea how helpful it was and still is to us in these early days when life has completely changed.
From now on I know I'll be bringing food to any new parents, because we know how much we appreciated it.
Not sure when I'll be back to doing "regular" posts but I was feeling up to it today so here we are.
Please be patient, I hope to get some sort of routine in the coming months in the meantime posts may be irregular but I'm still around, just bear with me :)
Today's Quote
A child fills a place in your heart that you never knew was empty
~ Unknown

Friday, September 18, 2009

Food Friday: Faux Fried Chicken & Rosemary Mashed Potato Gratin

Faux Fried Chicken:
Published by Chatelaine on 10/1/2009


  • 1 cup (250 mL) finely crushed croutons, cornflakes or taco chips
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) poultry or Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) each dried thyme leaves and salt
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) vegetable oil or 2 tbsp (30 mL) regular mayonnaise

  1. Preheat oven to 400F (200C). Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and spray with oil. In a shallow dish, stir croutons with poultry seasoning, thyme and salt. Lightly brush a chicken breast with oil, then coat with crumb mixture. Place on prepared sheet. Repeat with remaining chicken, oil and crumb mixture. Discard any remaining coating.
  2. Bake chicken in centre of oven until coating is crisp and golden,from 25 to 30 min. Wonderful with roasted cherry tomatoes.

Rosemary Mashed Potato Gratin :


medium potatoes
2 tsp
1-1/2 c.
1 tsp
minced fresh rosemary
1/4 Tsp
1-1/4 C.
shredded provolone, asiago or gouda cheese, divided


  1. Peel potatoes and cut into chunks. In a pot, cover potatoes with cold water; bring to a boil over high heat. Season water with 1 tsp salt. Reduce heat and boil gently for about 15 min or until fork tender. Drain; return pot to low heat for 1 min to dry, shaking often.
  2. Meanwhile, in a saucepan or in a microwave-safe measuring cup, combine Milk, rosemary and pepper. Heat, uncovered, over medium heat on stove-top until steaming, for about 3 min.
  3. Preheat broiler. Butter 8 large ramekins or a shallow 8-cup (2 L) baking dish.
  4. Mash potatoes while gradually adding warmed Milk mixture. Mash in 1 cup of the cheese and 1/4 tsp salt, or to taste. Spread into ramekins or baking dish and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Broil for about 3 min or until cheese is browned

Today's Quote
"Ah! There's nothing like staying at home, for real comfort"
~Jane Austen

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Blogger Backgrounds

A while ago I shared The Cutest Blog on the Block for free blogger backgrounds.
The only thing is its more of a jpeg file that's hosted by photobucket.
But if you're looking for something different that's not hosted by a server. Then check out this website:
they have some awesome templates....however WARNING!! they reformat a lot of your settings so be prepared to do some clean up and fixing once you upload it.
Not to mention be sure that you really like it and wont' tire of it and be wanting to change it in a few months because you'll have the headache all over again.
My cousin Kayla uses one of their backgrounds for her blog and I LOVE it!
Here's her BLOG!
"No gesture is too small when done with gratitude"

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Special Letter Project

I follow a blog called Purple Lemon Designs.
Kelly of Purple Lemon Designs put out THIS challenge!
Today I'm challenging you to do the same.
I really want to do this and I've been thinking about who I could send a letter too.
I haven't decided yet but I'll keep you posted if/when I do.
It's a little intimidating truthfully to make yourself so vulnerable to just randomly send someone a letter to tell them how they've affected your life and how you appreciate them.
Yet on the other hand if I were that person receiving that letter, I know I would appreciate that gesture more than anything.
“The supreme triumph is to be most vividly,
most perfectly alive.”
D.H. Lawrence

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

New Houses

Congrats to my brother Blaine who officially purchased his first house last night. 

It's a new house so he won't be moving until next November.
Hopefully there are no delays and all goes well.
I'm very proud of ya bro, very few single guys are responsible enough to go and purchase their own home. You should be very pleased with yourself.
Congrats again, can't wait to help you decorate :)
Today's Quote

"If you want to be successful, be excellent. If you want the best the world has to offer, offer the world your best." 

Monday, September 14, 2009

It's all Kristen's fault......

I laughed after I wrote the title to this post, because it IS all Kristen's fault.....LOL.
No not really, but he is the one who "insisted" I post these belly photos today.
As previously mentioned I'm really not a huge fan of the bare belly pics, but since I hadn't really taken any belly pics since our professional ones and now that I'm basically down to 2 weeks, Kristen decided last night that we needed more photos and that they had to be bare belly. we go
As soon as Kristen started clicking the camera he started laughing and told me to stop pushing my belly out.
I immediately reacted and exclaimed....I'M NOT!!!! 
Sure looks that way though doesn't it..... :)
This was late Sunday night, I'm dishevled and tired. 
Hey it was a busy day, I cooked Sunday dinner.
Which by the way took about 2 hours longer than expected because at one point I went to check the chicken to see if it was cooking okay to realize I hadn't even turned the oven on. brain for sure!
And to all of you who keep telling me it doesn't come back...not nice! 
Cause I'll go crazy if I keep doing things like this.
The front shot, which blows my mind cause I still can't get over the distinct lines of when my belly starts and ends. It's just so fascinating...really :)
So on display like a monkey in heels. 
I've felt that way more than once since being pregnant.
It's weird how complete strangers make conversation with you and sometimes make the dumbest remarks.
The lack of attention is something I won't miss when this baby comes out. At least all the attention will be on him or her then....thank goodness :)
Today's Quote
"I am my best work, a series of road maps, reports, recipes, doodles, and prayers from the front lines"
~Audre Lorde

Friday, September 11, 2009

Food Friday: Meal Plan

It's been a while since I've done a meal plan, so today here are my suggestions for this week.
Don't forget to add any missing grocery items to your shopping list this weekend :)

Monday: Almond Chicken & Rice (click HERE for Kraft recipe)

Tuesday: Lasagna with Garlic Bread

Wednesday: Grilled Salmon & Garden Salad

Thursday: Buffalo Chicken Wraps (see last weeks post HERE)

Friday: Grilled Steak & Greek Salad

And since Fall is definitely in the air maybe try some comfort cooking this weekend. 
How about a pot of chili or stew to simmer??? Mmm....with hot crescent rolls fresh out of the oven :)
For about THIS Kraft recipe
Chocolate Walnut Coconut Bars
Today's Quote
"Food is how I show my love"
~Paula Deen

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Engaged: Steph & Ed

I get so teary eyed every time I look at these photos.
It's because I know they're happy and they're truly in love.
Stephanie & Ed were engaged this past weekend....yay! 
Congrats :)
I knew it was coming.....I was kind of involved in helping pick out the engagement ring.
Can you imagine how hard it was keeping that quiet from Steph....geesh!!
It took place on Signal Hill in St.Johns, Newfoundland.
When I told Steph to have a good vacation I bet she had no idea that this would be part of it.
Ed had asked Steph's Dad for her hand in marriage (not sure if he asked in those words or but anyway the family was all in on the event about to take place.
Steph's Dad snapped these couple of photos
"The" moment....
 Awww...she said yes!!!!

 And the awesome ring!  
Yes its blurry but hey c'mon you keep your hand steady after being proposed too!!
To Steph & Ed congrats...I can't wait for your wedding.
And yes I'm still rootin' for down south!! :)
Stephy my dear deserve this. 
I wish you nothing but love & happiness.
Today's Quote
I hold it true, whate'er befall;
I feel it, when I sorrow most;
'Tis better to have loved and lost
Than never to have loved at all
~Alfred Tennyson

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Weekend In Review

It was a really nice weekend....did some more organizing of the nursery, officially packed the baby's bag, Mom's bag is started but not completed yet.
And honestly I'm pretty much in panic mode, I want everything done NOW! Not that I think I'm going early but I just want it all done no later than this weekend, just in case :)
Saturday night we headed to a friends house for a surprise birthday party.
Here's Jamey the guest of honour.....realizing that the surprise party is for her and not her friend
That's her fiance in the background (you might remember them from one of my Just Because sessions this summer on the photo blog)
Jamey with all the party guests, Jamey's sister (the hostess) had Jamey's face glued to popsicle sticks so that when she arrived she would know it was for her and not the friend.
Thought it was a really cute idea.

Sunday I had a couple of photo shoots, these were a few "straggler" ones I call them that slipped in past the August 15th cut off date. After that I didn't do anything the rest of the day because I was so tired.
That's why I was supposed to be finished the 15th....LOL.
Yesterday I spent the day with Kristen & Boone on a mini day trip. Last night we spent a couple of hours with friends and that was it.
Relaxing overall but busy enough that I wasn't home the way I wanted to be, thus panic mode!
If all goes well the nursery will be done this weekend and I can post pics next week! Yay...finally :)
Today's Quote
Pregnancy is the only time in a woman's life she can help God work a miracle.
~Erma Bombeck

Friday, September 4, 2009

Food Friday: Buffalo Chicken Wraps

I received my Kraft magazine the other day which featured this recipe
Buffalo Chicken Wraps
8 frozen breaded chicken breast strips  (we substituted these with spicy Chicken strips)
1/4 cup Mayo
1 Tbsp. hot pepper sauce  (left this part out since the chicken strips were already spicy)
2 cups shredded lettuce
4 large spinach flour tortillas  (mmm....loved these way more than regular wraps)
1 large tomato, chopped  (skipped the tomatoes since it makes everything soggy in my opinion)
1/2 cup Shredded Cheese 
BAKE chicken as directed on package. Meanwhile, mix dressing and pepper sauce until blended.
PLACE lettuce down centres of tortillas; top with chicken, tomatoes and cheese.
DRIZZLE with dressing mixture; roll up.
TIP!!! Warm up your wrap for 20 seconds in the microwave.....keeps it from tearing and falling apart when you're trying to eat it.
I had wrapped a couple leftover with saran wrap and refrigerated over night. I think they tasted better the next day for lunch :)
Today's Quote
It's like spicy food - sometimes you have to tone it down so more people can enjoy it.
~ Kenneth Edmonds

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Baby Shower #3

Is it possible to have too many baby showers!?!?! 
I'm so overwhelmed by everyone's generosity....and my co-workers were no different.
Yesterday they threw a potluck lunch (just my department) and then later in the afternoon everyone who contributed to the gifts joined us in the lunchroom for cake. 
I just can't say enough thank you's
I honestly feel like we don't deserve it, but I keep telling myself, it's not for me, it's for the baby.
It's how I cope....LOL.
Here's a couple of photos
This cake was a gift from a friend/co-worker in my department. 
Her friend made the cake, who's super talented.
In case you can't read the wording it says "Hello Mummy, Bye Bye Tummy" can say that again!!!! :)
Mmm...all the awesome food at the potluck
The cake for everyone who contributed later in the afternoon
That's my friend Stephy who organized everything.....yeah she helped Vicki with the other shower too.
She's such a good friend who has went above & beyond. And as of today is gone on a much needed vacation.....ENJOY!
It reads "Happy Diaper Days - Christa & Kristen"
And the only reason I'm showing this photo was because I was so startled at how huge I do look from side on.....LOL
Again thanks to everyone....we're truly grateful!
Today's Quote
"Ah, life is a gate, a way, a path to Paradise anyway, why not live for fun and joy.....why not go to your desire and laugh"
~ Jack Kerouac

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


Today I received the remaining photos from Baby Shower #2
I had all intentions of sharing the random photos but it took a turn when I noticed all my weird expressions.
I've often been criticized for not being sensible when I'm the one having the photo taken and that I'm always "silly" ....Myrna....LOL!
So today's post is called's a few from my baby shower....
they are NOT flattering but hey I'm trying to keep my sense of humour here
But it get's better
I have no explanation
This one I DO have an explanation....dang hat!!! 
It was payback for doing this to Steph at her baby shower....I'm sorry and I'll never do it again
Here I know I'm thinking..."Don't wreck the cake, don't wreck the cake!!!"
And finally ONE nice least it's of me cutting the cake which I'll most likely be adding to the "baby" scrapbook when I actually start it
Today's Quote
My style is very strong poses and expressions.
~John Kricfalusi

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

September Really!?!?

I can't believe September is here. There's definitely a "Fall" feel to the air already. 
I'm loving the cooler nights since it makes for comfortable sleeping weather (for the most part)
The summer has flown was a busy one but I loved every minute of it. 
Now I'm just preparing those last few things before the arrival of our little one.
The nursery is painted and I'm slowly getting clothes washed, organized, and getting furniture put together (that part is Kristen) and decorating soon to be started. 
I'll have photos as soon as the nursery is presentable....its not quite there yet :)

Today I'm 36 weeks! And this past Sunday I was officially 1 month til my due date.
I keep getting a few remarks that I'm going to go early but I really don't think I will. 
IF I do it'll still be within a week of my due date, I'm convinced of that. Mind you I could be wrong but I just don't "feel" that way. Not yet anyways :)
I find it truly fascinating how aggressively opinionated "some" people can be towards pregnant women. For the most part people have been supportive, encouraging and understanding. But some have been down right rude, aggressive and if anything very discouraging about the whole deal. I've just taken it all with a grain of salt and so far haven't ended up in tears over it. 
On another note....I sent out my first Cyball Photography Newsletter this morning. 
Very exciting :)
I'm sure there's room for improvement but I am happy with how it looks for the "first" issue and all.
Thank you all for your support, you guys are the best friends, family, blog readers a gal could ever have!
Today's Quote.
 "I believe that every single event in life happens in an opportunity to choose love over fear"
 ~ Oprah