Small Businesses We Love: Twinkle Twinkle Little Store

Tucked away in a plaza on the Tamiami Trail in Naples is a one-of-a-kind store with a clever name. At Twinkle Twinkle Little Store, you can find just about anything you want or need relating to maternity, baby, and kids; both new product and resale.

What makes this locally owned store so special? It isn’t the 8,000 square feet of store space. No, not even the fact that they have a four-story play area to entertain your kids while you shop (seriously!). My favorite thing about Twinkle Twinkle Little Store is that when you walk in, you are not only greeted by a smiling store associate. Chances are, she is holding a smiling baby that is just as happy to see you!

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Twinkle Twinkle Little Store was started in 2008 when owner Cheryl Courson realized that she shouldn’t have to work so hard to have someone else raise her children. Reliable child care is hard to find and hard to afford for the average family. As she regularly worked 70 hours a week in varying shifts that included nights and weekends, Cheryl knew she needed a change.

A star…uh.. STORE was born!

Twinkle employees bring their babies to work with them! This is the ultimate definition of multi-tasking. You’ll watch a Twinkle mom answer a phone call, nurse a baby, and distract a toddler all in a swift motion. This set up allows these women (and men) to work and earn an income, and also tend to the needs of their young babies and children without sacrificing those special moments that happen in the first months and years of life. Not to mention, they save on all of those day care costs and the headache of securing a sitter for every shift.

Another plus side to having all of those moms and babies in the store: The experience! When you come in with a question, you’ll receive an answer based on real life experience. The employees are familiar with the products because they use them. They can direct you and give advice because chances are they have been there, done that. There is a wide range of families, large and small, from all walks of life.

Let’s get back to that play area. In the back of the resale side of the store there is a towering play area that spans the back wall.

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With two slides and multiple levels, your children can get lost in a game of hide and seek while you shop peacefully.

Speaking of shopping: You’ll find kid sizes ranging from preemie to 16/18. A long row of maternity clothes, both new and resale. Clearance racks with a ton of great deals starting at only a quarter! Yep. Just 25 cents! Not to mention shoes, accessories, and all the toys and books you can ask for. And it is all just a fraction of retail.

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You can also bring your gently used clothes and toys to Twinkle to sell them. You’ll receive an offer for store credit, which is perfect for moving up to the next size. Or, you can choose cash on the spot. You also get a coupon just for bringing items in. For those items that Twinkle can’t accept at the moment, you have the option to donate. Twinkle works with a long list of local charities and has its own Outreach program. The Twinkle Outreach program helps local families in need and hosts special events like the Back to School giveaway.

There is also a Co-op program which allows parents to volunteer in the store (babies in tow!) and earn store credit. This flexible program is perfect for stay at home moms, or families looking to get stuff for their children without shelling out a ton of cash.

Along with all of this, the store also offers baby gear rentals. The rentals are perfect for those vacationing in the SWFL area. You can reserve a crib and all of the essentials and have it delivered to your hotel or rental home. They strive to make your vacation as stress free as possible.

Think that locals don’t need to rent anything? Think again! Locals can rent beach gear like toys, towels, umbrellas, coolers, and so much more. Use it for a day on the water and return it on the way home. Save a little time for yourself by not having to take it all home and wash it out.

If you think that this place sounds great, you should come in and see for yourself!

Visit their website HERE

The store is located at 4172 Tamiami Trail North in Naples.

 

As Your Doula… Some Things I Can’t Promise (and Some Things I Can!)

In the birth world we talk a lot about outcomes.  If you have a doula during labor your chance of a cesarean section could be lowered. If you have a postpartum doula your chances of postpartum depression could be lowered or breastfeeding goals could be more successful. With the right support and education outcomes can potentially be different.

But here’s the thing: I can’t promise certain outcomes. I’m not magic. I can’t change a turn of events or save you from anything. I feel like we have been led to believe that if we do ‘abc’ then the results will be ‘xyz’. Birth is unpredictable. Life is unpredictable. Things happen, quickly and unexpectedly.

Disappointment comes from things turning out differently than we had originally planned. Of course, as your doula I want you to have the best experience you can. I want you to feel loved and supported throughout the whole thing. Not to mention, the fact that you should always feel like you have the ability to make your own choices when the unexpected does happen.

So, while I cannot promise how your baby will be born or how you will tolerate the insane hormonal ups and downs of the fourth trimester, I can make one promise; As your doula, I can promise that the choices you make will be fully supported. I can promise that when something unexpected comes up, I will do my best to make sure you have the resources you need to make your best educated decision, should you want them. That being said, I can’t promise you that I have all the answers to the questions you ask. But I can promise that I will help you find those answers.

A big part of my job is networking and making those connections with other professionals here in South West Florida. I feel confident that between us all, we can provide you with the resources you need to fulfill your definition of a successful birth and/or postpartum period. We will do everything in our power to give you what you need. I promise!

 

How Far Can My Baby See?

Have you ever wondered what your newborn was staring at? It is like there is something on the ceiling that has caught her attention and she isn’t looking away. Is she staring at nothing, or is it something more?

At birth, your baby’s eyes are not fully developed but they can see contrast. Maybe this is why a woman’s nipples grow larger and get darker during pregnancy. It is like giving the newborn a bull’s-eye to hone in on in those early days of nursing.

Much like everything else, focusing and seeing at a distance will take some time to do. A newborn can see about 8-10 inches away. It is the perfect distance to see the parent holding them. Their eyes are not coordinated and may wander, and sometimes cross. This is completely normal for the first eight weeks or so. Of course, if it concerns you or happens very frequently, mention it to your pediatrician.

Within these first few months, your baby will begin to focus more intently on your face when you hold them. Their hand-eye coordination starts to develop around this time. You may have noticed how your baby will focus on a toy that is hanging in front of them. You’ll be surprised to find that they will soon begin to swat at the toy, too!

Depth perception will develop in the coming months, as it is not present at birth. Their changing sight is one of the many vast developments your baby will make in the first year. So slow down, cuddle that newborn, and take comfort in the fact that your face is one of the few things she CAN see right now.

 

 

 

In This Season: A Letter to My Friend

Dear Friend,

I thought about you today. Remember that time we went to lunch and talked so much that we barely touched our food? How we laughed so hard, the tears were streaming down our faces to the point that the table next to us probably thought we had severe problems. And that only made us laugh more. We promised each other we would do it again soon and keep in touch. Growing up sucks. It takes us away from each other.

Sweet friend, although I thought about you today and most days, I am not keeping my end of the promise.

You see, this season in my life is tough. It is loud and crazy and beautiful. I wouldn’t trade it for the world… well except the fact that the toddler pees on the floor so much we call her piddles the puppy. Scratch that. I’ll keep that too because it will be a sweet memory one day. Just as our friendship is.

I miss you and how close we used to be. I could call to catch up, but if you have ever been on the phone with someone who has children you know that most of the conversation is you listening to them tell their children to stop fighting or to go watch a movie so they can talk for once. Instead I decide that I will call when I’m in the car by myself next. Knowing good and well that when that happens, I will just be sitting there enjoying the rare silence.

I could send a quick text but then we would be trapped in the awkward chit-chat back and forth.

How are you?

Good. You?

Can’t complain. Anything new?

Nope. Same stuff, different day. We should get together soon.

I agree. It has been too long.

Chances are, I will not make any solid plans with you. And it isn’t you, it’s me. At this time in my life, friendships take a back seat. I have these tiny humans that are competing for my attention and affection every hour of every day. If there happens to be a spare moment in there that those little people are distracted with something else, I have to figure out how to be a good wife and give my husband the love and attention that he deserves. Then, there is self-care. I still have to think about me. You could argue that catching the Wednesday yoga class with you would be a form of self care. And it might. But, honestly the thought of getting everyone ready and out of the house by a certain time makes me anxious beyond words. If I happen to have a free day where we don’t have appointments or other plans, I like to keep it that way. I could meet you for coffee. We could go to a park for a play date. However, right now, today I just can’t. On top of figuring out how to balance being a mom and wife, I also wear the hat of teacher, employee, referee, chef, maid, and so many more.

I always say there will be a day when my children don’t need me so much. A day that I will have energy to wear more than yoga pants and actually brush my hair. There will be a day that I get to focus on friendships again. It will be a glorious day by the beach, perhaps with a margarita. We can waste a whole day reminiscing on the good ol’ days. Until then, I ask for understanding and patience. If you invite me somewhere and I do not accept, please know that it only means not right now instead of not ever.

Good friend, I promise that if you seriously needed me I would be there. Don’t think otherwise. If you wanted to come over and deal with my chaos and sink full of dishes, I would make coffee and talk with you all afternoon. You know, in between getting fruit snacks, restarting Frozen for the 100th time this week, and changing diapers. I just cannot commit to girls’ night out or Thursday mom’s group. Not in this season.

I wish I had the time and energy to put into everything that called for my attention. Everything sounds so fun and moms need a little fun here and there.

I am thankful for social media and a few minutes each day that I can scroll through and see the highlights of your life. I hope you know that you are in my mind often. I can’t wait to pick up where we left off.

Love,

Your friend with kids

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Boy? Girl? Surprise?

These days, advances in technology and medicine are making it possible to find out the gender of your baby sooner than ever. With things like gender reveal parties and photo shoots becoming more and more popular, it is no wonder that people are in such a hurry to know what (or who!) is growing in there.

There are still, however, those people who decide not to find out the gender of their baby. Reasons can vary; from an uncooperative baby during ultrasounds, the love of a great surprise, or just no desire to know beforehand. It really depends on the family.

What Friends and Family Think

It is totally normal to get responses like, “Oh, I could never not find out!” and at the same time another person might say, “That is so cool!”

You never know how your friends and family might react to your decision to not find out the gender of your baby. It will drive some people crazy because they are planners and want to know what to buy. Some will think it is very admirable and they love the mystery. Either way, it is your decision so have fun with it!

The Positive Side to Not Knowing

Speaking from personal experience, I have seen every side of keeping the sex of a baby a secret.

What is great about it?

  • If someone wants to get a gift, they are forced to get the important things. Many people go crazy with outfits once they know gender, but with nothing to base the purchases on, they tend to stick with the useful things like diapers and wipes. This means you are not inundated with unnecessary things and a ton of clothes and shoes your baby will never wear.
  • It leaves a little mystery to life. We are in a time of over-sharing, so it is nice to know there is still something that we don’t know.
  • It makes the birth day so much sweeter. The want to know who you are about to meet can give you a little extra umph to keep going in those last few contractions when you are exhausted and ready to give up.
  • Most of the things you receive or buy for the baby are pretty neutral, and that means you can use them for multiple children without worrying about the colors being appropriate.
  • If there is a photographer present for the birth, the reactions they capture as you find out the gender are priceless. It becomes something that is treasured for years to come!

The Negative Side to Not Knowing

What isn’t so great about it?

  • I’ll be honest here. I feel like if I had known the gender of my last two, it may have made my connection with them stronger. When I say that, I mean before they were born. Bonding was never an issue once they were here. But, when I tried to envision my baby and have a conversation with it, it felt weird. Almost like I couldn’t really connect because I didn’t know who I was talking to.
  • Everyone wants to guess what you are having and they use crazy old wives tales to justify their guess. You are all belly so it MUST be a boy. Your nose is getting bigger so it MUST be a girl. Look, I don’t know what it is but we are hoping it isn’t a dinosaur.
  • Your friends and family will accuse you of knowing and keeping it a secret. They will also ask every time they see you if you found out the gender or when you plan to.
  • You will get the urge to buy that adorable dress or decorate the nursery in a specific theme. Sometimes the feeling is short-lived, sometimes not.

 

The good thing about not knowing is you can always find out. However, once you know there is no going back!

 

Did you know the gender of your children? Do you think you could ever not find out?

What It Is Like to Have an Unassisted Birth- Part 3

Before you get started, go here to check out Part 1 and Part 2 if you haven’t already.

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Labor can play cruel tricks on you. It can take even the most confident woman and convince her that she can’t do it. She cannot make it to the end. She needs to just tap out and surrender to the ways of the world.This, my friends, is the period known as transition. As a labor doula, I am very familiar with this phase of labor. I have witnessed its power while supporting clients, and felt it first hand during my own births.

Transition is the point in labor when your contractions switch from dilating the cervix to actively working to push the baby out. Your mind tells you to quit. You are too exhausted to go on. You believe that labor will go on for days and there is no possible way that you can last.

That is what was happening. I felt so, so tired. I wanted nothing more than to lay down and go to sleep. I just couldn’t get comfortable in any position. I wanted this baby out and I wanted it to be over. Again, the logical side of my brain knew what was happening. The emotional side couldn’t believe that I was close to pushing and those thoughts are what was taking over. I wanted to cry. I wanted my water to break. I wanted the pressure to disappear. I felt incredibly vulnerable and I had to remind myself that I was in the presence of those I trusted. I felt loved and supported and I just needed to surrender to the force of this labor. I trusted myself and knew what I was doing. I trusted my husband to watch over me.

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I kept telling myself that if I could just sleep, if only for a minute, I would feel better. I needed to lay down. I was so exhausted. So, as uncomfortable as I was, I tried to rest. The contractions were so intense. It wasn’t long before I realized I was ready to actively push this baby out. And somewhere in that crazy thought process, I told myself that even if that baby wasn’t ready to come out I was going to push until my water broke.

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I was trying to use gravity as much as I could. I could feel the amniotic sac. I honestly thought I was about to birth a baby born en caul. That is when the baby is still in the amniotic sac and the membranes have not ruptured. It is pretty neat to look at, and from the bit of experience I got I will assume it is very painful. I decided to get on my hands and knees and asked for a mirror. I wanted to see the progress to try to push myself to go a little further. I was almost there.

In the mirror I could see something coming! I pushed so hard. It was then that my water finally broke! It was tinged with meconium, which is the first tar-like poops that the baby passes. I will not lie. This startled me and concerned me a little bit. So I pushed as hard as I could to get the baby out and make sure all was okay.

As I was pushing, my six-year-old woke up and walked into the living room. He looked at me and put his hand on his forehead while saying, “Oh, brother!” He quickly turned around and went back to his room. That is not what he wanted to see first thing in the morning.

Once the head was out, Chris checked to make sure there was no cord wrapped around the neck. Once he gave me the all clear, I pushed with everything I had. Getting the shoulders out proved to be the toughest part because he had his hands up, like he was ready to fight. Once he was out, he started to scream immediately. I felt so relieved that it was finally over.

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I quickly turned over so I could hold and meet this new little man in my life. Ryan was born at 6:05 A.M.

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I cleaned him up and quickly read up on meconium aspiration and weighed the option of a hospital transfer. Due to him being post-dates and considered and older baby, we came to the conclusion that his gut was mature and this was the reason he passed the meconioum rather than it being related to distress during labor. He was also not covered in vernix, and his skin was peeling. A sure sign that he was ready to join us.

I moved to the couch to get more comfortable and once the placenta was delivered I inspected it to make sure it was complete.

 

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After allowing some time for the cord to stop pulsing and turn white, we tied it using a tie we bought from Tiny Ties. Chris cut it, just as he has for our other three children.

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We took our time with introductions. Snuggling and resting were the priority for the rest of the day.

 

Although you may not gather it from the pictures, the experience of the unassisted birth wasn’t exactly as I had thought it would be. Maybe it was the intense pain, or being scared because I was second guessing myself. It just wasn’t exactly the sweet, satisfying experience I had romanticized in my head in the weeks leading up to it. I have said to many people the intensity of the labor and birth made me never want to do it again, and that is something I never thought I would say.

Labor is hard work. Hard work that is met with the ultimate reward. I share so much of our lives and this experience to let women know that just because their choice isn’t what is normal, that does not mean it is the wrong choice. You have to be able to let go, feel safe, and be completely vulnerable during labor and birth. It is a necessary part of the physiological process. Just because this path is what was best for my family, it does not mean that it is best for everyone.

Some say what we did was heroic and amazing. Some say it was irresponsible and selfish. I say it was another day in the Jackson house. We just added another member and a whole lotta love.

A special thank you goes to our wonderful birth photographer, Naomi Stevens at Fresh Squeezed Photography of Naples. And to those who knew of our plan, and met us with nothing but love and support. Also, thank you to all of you for reading and following our story.

 

What It Is Like to Have an Unassisted Birth- Part 2

If you haven’t yet, go check out Part 1 of this story HERE.

Where did we leave off?

Right. 41 weeks. I spent that last week with my husband and other children. Trying to get as much quality time and keep myself busy so I wasn’t just sitting and thinking about having a baby. I am very familiar with going past 41 weeks. I honestly knew I would this time, just like I did with the last two. What confused me this time was that I had absolutely no signs of impending labor. NOTHING.

Now, being in this line of work I know that you can go from zero to baby in an hour. I’ve seen it happen. So while part of me knew to just trust the process, the other part of me was getting discouraged. Especially when met with things like, “Well what did your midwife say?” and “When is the ultrasound to make sure everything is okay?”

I didn’t really need these things to know that everything was okay. Baby was moving fine. I felt great. I am in tune with my body and just knew that things were as they should be. But there was still a voice that worked to lower my confidence in myself and in the process.

You see, once you decide to have an unassisted pregnancy and birth, you begin walking a fine line between fear and confidence. You know you can do it. You are capable. Millions of women before you, with you, and after you have had and will have babies without anyone else around. Where does the fear come from? The stories. Not of medical emergencies or dire situations. But the stories of families being reported to the Department of Children and Families for medical neglect because they chose a different path than everyone else. It seems silly, but it happens. I was so worried that in the event of a hospital transfer or if I said something to the wrong person before we had the baby, we would get reported for doing what felt right to us. It takes one person, and that is what I was most afraid of. It got to the point where in the last few weeks of pregnancy I was afraid to eat an ‘everything’ bagel. With my luck I would be the one to test positive for opiates because of the freaking poppy seeds on the bagel.

Thankfully we have been met with nothing but positive reaction from friends and family. Even getting Ryan’s birth certificate was easy. The supervisor at the Vital Statistics office looked at me like I was crazy when I mentioned we were going unassisted, but she was very helpful in the process and made it much less of a hassle than I thought it would be.

So here we are in the wee hours of February 17th. I went to bed at midnight thinking that I would be pregnant forever. This was officially the longest gestation period I had experienced.

1:30 rolls around and I woke up with contractions. I didn’t get my hopes up as I had played this game before. The start and stop of labor was a cruel joke. I got up and moved around. I made a yummy drink I call Labor-ade. More on that recipe later.

At 2:00 AM, I realized that at three minutes apart and growing in strength, these contractions weren’t going anywhere. This was it! I woke my husband and began to get our supplies ready. I had originally planned on laboring in our bedroom, but with a sleeping toddler, I thought it was best if we moved into the living room. I called our wonderful photographer around 2:10, and she made it there shortly after.

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We sat and talked. Pausing to honor the intensity of each contraction. Chris and Naomi kept me occupied with random conversation while we waited for labor to takes its course.

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I stood up and swayed through them, using gravity to my advantage. I had waited 41 long weeks to meet this baby. I wanted it to hurry! There was so much pressure. I kept saying that I wish my water would break. Everything would be okay if that would happen. I thought that if it happened, the pressure would go away and it labor would progress quickly. Not only was the pressure intense, but the contractions were too. I felt each one in my back, through my whole belly, and they eventually radiated down my legs. It was the most intense pain I had ever felt. I just wanted it to be over.

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I reached a point where I was bearing down through the contractions. I couldn’t tell if I was just trying to rush the process or if it was true feelings. I was so afraid to push too soon and complicate things. I got inside my own head. I was letting that doubt creep in. I decided a shower was best. I wanted to be alone and in the dark. I believe this goes back to the primal side of labor and birth. It just felt right.

The hot water was the perfect relief for the intense contractions. I was able to let the water hit and comfort every place where I felt pain. I stayed until there was no hot water left. I was instinctively bearing down while in the shower too, but I still hesitated. I couldn’t believe it would be going this fast.

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We are almost there guys! I hate to leave you hanging, but part 3 will be here soon. I hope you are enjoying our story so far. I’d love to hear from you! Thoughts, comments, questions, anything.

Again, photography credit goes to Naomi Stevens at Fresh Squeezed Photography.

 

 

What It Is Like to Have an Unassisted Birth- Part 1

Ryan was a surprise for our family. Life’s little way of showing us that we weren’t really in control and no matter what kind of plans we make, there is always something bigger and better around the corner. naples-pregnancy-announcement-photography

After a few days of denial and worry, we decided that the best way to handle unexpected surprises is to laugh about it and make the best of the situation. We announced to our families and got an ultrasound to make sure everything was as it should be and that there was only one baby.

As the weeks went on, I was plagued with the task of choosing prenatal care. Having had our previous babies at home, my husband and I were no strangers to the idea of a natural home birth. There are options in South West Florida, but none of them were quite what we were looking for. It is hard to explain. We were in this place that even we can’t describe. I continued to count the weeks and milestones in pregnancy. I kept myself busy and tried to not think about the fact that I still had not chosen a care provider. In the meantime, I started doing all of the basic things that would have been done at prenatal visits. I could listen for heart tones. I could test my urine. I knew from previous pregnancies that I was no where near high risk, and that for me, delivering my own baby wasn’t inherently dangerous.

You see, of all the things in life that scare me, childbirth is not one of them. Sure, there is a lot of unknown. I think that the mystery surrounding it all is kind of nice. I know my body knows what it is doing. It is honestly the only time in my life where I feel like I know what I am doing. During birth, I close my eyes and let nature take over. There is no one telling me what to do and how to do it. I just listen to myself and move the way I need to help the baby come. My philosophy on it this time around was that it only took my husband and I to make this baby. Why did we need anyone else to help us bring it into the world?

I read and absorbed all of the information I could. Although I trusted myself and knew everything would be just fine, I was not naive enough to believe that there wasn’t a slight risk. My husband and I prepared for the what-ifs. We talked about what to do in case of an emergency. Where to transfer, what to do for bleeding, or cord prolapse. The more we talked about those things, the more nervous we got, but it was necessary conversation to ensure that we were covering all the bases.

Not many people knew what we were planning. I told only a handful of people, and those were only people who I knew would respect and support our decision. There were many people that I avoided the topic with, and a few that I lied to. Dishonesty is not in my nature and that was a hard thing to do. But it was easier at the time to tell them we were using midwife xyz, than to tell them we planned on going unassisted. If you guys are reading this, I sincerely apologize for that. I did not want anyone to worry about us, or question us on everything as I did not have the energy to defend our choices.

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We made it to 41 weeks. All we had to do was wait on a baby…

Stay tuned for part 2, coming soon!

Photography credit goes to Naomi Stevens of http://www.freshsqueezedphotographyofnaples.com

Local Businesses We Love- Fresh Squeezed Photography

As a small business owner myself, I love to connect with other small businesses in the community. Those connections allow for collaboration, information, and referrals for our clients to make their experience that much better.

Today, I’d like to showcase my favorite local photographer.

Naomi Stevens of Fresh Squeezed Photography of Naples is truly a one of a kind photographer and such a pleasure to work with. Her shoots are mostly done in a documentary style, and that allows her to capture the real life of what is happening in the moment. I really love this style for family shoots as it captures the true feel of the family, rather than an awkward pose.

This style really shines through when doing weddings, parties, and one of my favorite life events: birth! It is also a spectacular way to do a newborn shoot. What better way to capture the feeling and emotion of those first few days at home with baby than a peek into the real-life aspect of everything.

Although Naomi is based out of Naples, she will travel to surrounding cities to meet the needs of her clients. If you are in the South West Florida area and looking for a photographer, I suggest you get in touch with her. Her sweet, soft nature can put anyone at ease, even the most camera-shy.

Hop on over to her website and check out the galleries. You will not be disappointed!

http://www.freshsqueezedphotographyofnaples.com

Think Before You Post: Social Media Etiquette and the New Baby

Social media is involved in almost every aspect of our lives. From day-to-day updates to funny stories to life-changing announcements. We are so quick to pull out our phones and update all of our friends on what is happening in the moment.

When a new baby enters the world, the excitement can be overwhelming. It can be so hard to have a filter and keep quiet about the new arrival. Before you go post crazy, take a moment and think about what the new parents would want. They were undoubtedly excited in the beginning and put a lot of thought into a pregnancy announcement. They worked hard at coming up with a name and setting up a nursery. Simply put, if anyone should get to shout to the world that the baby has been born, it is the new mom and dad.

When in doubt, ask first.

Have a conversation beforehand about expectations, so no one over steps boundaries. It may sound silly, especially in a world where we over share so much. But, some families want some time to know their new baby before being overrun with visitors. Some families don’t have a name picked out and want time to decide. Some families just want privacy and do not necessarily want the new baby plastered on social media outlets just yet.

Sometimes a woman can be nervous about labor and delivery and not know what to expect. She does not want everyone to know labor has started and wants to go through the process without dozens of calls and texts asking for progress. I promise, she will not forget to announce to the world that her precious baby has arrived. Let her do it when she is ready.

Are you on the list of people getting a call when labor starts so you can be at the hospital when the baby is born?

DO:

Show up with lots of love and support.

Take pictures of the excitement so the parents can see them later.

Capture a few videos and say something sweet to the baby.

DON’T (without permission):

‘Check in’ at the hospital or place of birth announcing baby is on the way.

Post pictures of the baby.

Announce baby’s name.

 

You may be thinking that this is silly. Having a baby is a glorious thing and new parents should be grateful that you are so excited for them. Trust me, many feelings have been hurt and toes have been stepped on when people take it upon themselves to post things on social media without parental permission.

Be kind, be courteous. Again, when in doubt, ask first.