My Birth Story

Hi everyone! I’m finally back after stepping away from posting for a few weeks, and for good reason!  On August 29, 2018 we finally welcomed a baby boy, Rye Joseph, into our lives and here’s how it all went down! 


Okay first, let’s back track a little. My due date was August 21st and honestly I never even thought, and neither did my doctors, that I would make it that far. You may remember me taking about being in bed rest during my pregnancy and that was all due to pre-term labor at 31 weeks and again at 32. I was given steroid shots to develop the baby’s lungs and placed on bedrest for the duration of the pregnancy. My doctors didn’t think I would be getting past 34 weeks. Honestly it was one of the most nerve wracking months of our lives.  But, the baby clearly had other plans because 34 weeks came and went and so did 35, 36, 37 (after which they finally lifted bedrest), 38, 39, and then my due date hit at 40 weeks! Say what?!  

So, when my due date passed, my husband an I were kind of left scratching our heads. This baby clearly had a mind of his/her own (we didn’t know gender through all of this) and now we were just left trying to patiently wait after mentally preparing ourselves to have a baby “any day” since 32 weeks! Not to mention, throughout this entire period, especially the last few weeks before the due date, I had been having a lot of contractions.  Many times they were strong, consistently 2-5 minutes apart and lasting for several hours...but, never the REAL thing.  

As 40 weeks progressed my doctors decided to schedule me for an induction at 41 weeks, with the hopes that I would go into labor on my own before that.  Welp, another week passed and I was walking nonstop, bouncing on my yoga ball, looking up every trick in the book to get this baby moving on out, but nothing was really happening and I was starting to feel defeated and also very uncomfortable. I wanted to avoid an induction if possible so I just kept trying to tell myself and also pray that my body and the baby would get the memo to come before I needed to be induced

August 28, The Induction Day - I was now at 41 weeks, overdue, and starting to get anxious about being induced. I woke up on that Tuesday morning and I think in an effort to keep my nerves at bay, I said to Scott, “How funny would it be if I went into labor today right before they induced me?” I was having some contractions consistently again, but I had been there, done that, bought a t-shirt, so I didn’t think much of it. We were scheduled to arrive at the hospital for the induction at 5 pm Tuesday evening, so we spent the morning packing the car, playing with our dog, and then we decided to havae one last good, big meal before days of hospital food (yuck!). We headed to Bar Taco in Port Chester and it was amazing! Then we went back home and eventually around 4 pm, made our way to the hospital.  


When we arrived, it was like the baby flood gates had opened and everyone who was due in August decided to have a baby that day! We checked in and we were placed back out in the family waiting area along with two other couples because they didn’t have any rooms available right away. At this point it was becoming comical because it just added to the saga of what had been the past few months of the pregnancy. As we sat in the waiting area for about an hour, I was still having contractions but didn’t think much of them, and I had a sense of extreme calm and peace for the first time in months. Around 5:30 they finally told us they had a room ready and we headed into Labor & Delivery.

Once we were settled they started monitoring me and I was having contractions ranging from 3-5 minutes apart. The plan was to start cervadil around 7 pm and then early Wednesday morning start pitocin. For some reason I had a gut feeling that we wouldn’t need to go through all of that and that the baby would just get the memo it was time to come on out. So, when my doctor came in around 7 to check me and use the cervadil, she realized I was 3 cm and with the consistent contractions, she decided she wanted to just see what happened overnight without any intervention. At this point I was getting more excited and kept feeling more and more that the baby was going to come on his or her own.

The night went by and my contractions were getting stronger. I kept telling the night nurse that they were more and more intense but she said it wasn’t real labor because my contractions weren’t textbook consistently 2 minutes apart. So a few more hours went by, I couldn’t sleep at was now about 2 am and I was in a fair amount of pain. I also had to pee about every 30 minutes to I kept waking up my poor hubby to help detach me fromhe monitors and IV. Around 3 am I finally called for the nurse to request an IV administered sleep aid/mild pain killer so I could sleep at least for a few hours, especially if the next day would involve being in labor for hours waiting for pitocin to work.  Thankfully, my night nurse was on a break so I got a different nurse who came in and gave me the meds and finally solidified that I WAS actually in labor. I was able to sleep for a few hours and then woke up around 6 am to the nurse and my doctor in the room. 

My doctor checked me and realized I was about 5.5 cm dialated and that I definitely didn’t need the pitocin. I was SO relieved and then within a matter of 5 minutes, she was breaking my water.  My husband slept through this entire ordeal so when I woke him up around 7:00 am on Wednesday morning he was pretty surprised.  

August 29th, Delivery Day - So I know I’ve already recapped part of this day, but anyways.... After they broke my water I started having really strong and painful contractions REALLY fast. They moved me into the delivery room where I would stay until the baby was born. By the time we got over to the laboring room, probably a matter of 10 minutes, I was in a lot of pain and decided I wanted the epidural.  They immediately called the anesthesiologist and by 8 am she was in there getting the epidural ready. They kicked Scott out of the room (standard procedure for epidurals) and I told him to go get some coffee that it would probably be a while since I was only at 5 cm.  She administered the epidural around 8:15 in between some crazy intense contractions. My nurse, now a new one who was amazing, just kept telling me I would feel so much better afterwards. By 8:25ish the epidural was done but I was still just having a ton of pain and pain you couldn’t describe. My nurse knew something was off because I shouldn’t have such intense pain after an epidural.  So, she decided to check me around 8:40 and to EVERYONE’s surprise I was 10 cm! 

From that point forward everything was kind of a crazy blur. In between my crazy contractions, the failed epidural, and the chaos of going from 5 to 10 cm in under an hour, I didn’t know what to think. There were nurses flooding in, they were paging for the doctor over and over because I needed to push. It then suddenly dawned on me that Scott wasn’t in the room. I remember thinking to myself “oh shit” he’s going to miss this whole thing! I called him over and over and the nurses were running around the maternity floor trying to find him. They came back and told me they couldn’t find him and I was now just freaking out! This was all probably a matter of 10 minutes but it felt like 3 hours to me. Finally, he walked in, tired but in good spirits with his coffee. The nurse told him to put his coffee down and grab my right leg, that I was ready to push. I honestly wish I had a picture to capture his face in this moment, it was hysterical! 

By this time it was 8:50 and I was ready to push. I was determined to keep pushing and pushing because I didn’t want to be pushing for hours. I know it’s common for first time moms to push for a long time and I decided that wasn’t going to be me! I only had to push for 20 minutes and halfway through the doctor decided I needed an episiotomy because the baby was so big and to avoid a 4th degree tear. We were a little surprised to hear her say the baby was big because I had been measuring “small” the entire pregnancy.

Well the doctor definitely knew her stuff because at 9:10 am, after a fast and furious few hours, we welcomed a baby boy, Rye Joseph Robinson, into this world and he was a whopping 8 lbs, 13 oz and 22 inches!  We were so incredibly excited and Scott was especially thrilled it was a was my dad, after having 4 girls, that man was holding out hope for a grandson haha. 


After giving birth everything else was pretty uneventful. We had your standard two day hospital stay and then headed home. Postpartum recovery is no joke and having a ton of stitches from the episiotomy didn’t help. But, I am happy to report that at three weeks postpartum everything is going really well from the breastfeeding to recovery to the sleeping...well sometimes we sleep...but either way we have loved every minute of it!! 

Overall, I had a pretty great birth experience. I was bummed about the epidural because I felt like I got it for no reason considering it didn’t work at all and I could have just labored and pushed without it had I known I was already at 10 cm! But, it is what it is and the one silver lining is that now I know for next time I can definitely endure labor without it AND push out a pretty big baby! I am so happy I was able to go into labor on my own without any of the induction drugs. It’s kind of amazing what your body can do and that it knew what to do exactly at the right time.

Thank you all so much for following along with my entire pregnancy and for standing by during my three week hiatus! I’m working on a ton of new content some focused around the typical fashion and lifestyle blogging and the other half focusing on being a new mom! You have all been so amazingly supportive and I can’t wait to continue sharing all of these amazing life changes!

XoXo - Jamie 

Pumpkin Pie Lactation Cookies

Any other pumpkin lovers here?! I know, I know, I can see the eye rolls for pumpkin and everything fall coming our way, but I have always loved anything pumpkin and at anytime of year! So, when I decided I wanted to make a big batch of lactation cookies I wanted to somehow incorporate pumpkin into them.  Now don’t let the word “lactation” freak you out haha, I promise these cookies don’t have anything in them that is going to make you spontaneously produce breast milk and they are totally okay for anyone to eat! But, they do have the added benefit of some ingredients that can help to boost your supply if you’re looking to do so!  


Now, full disclosure, this recipe is an adapted version of one from Premeditated Leftovers. I’ve made some modifications to create what I think is a slightly better tasting and less sugary cookie. I’m also including some tips for making this without the Brewer’s Yeast in case that isn’t your thing. 

Also, a note on Brewer’s Yeast. Basically it’s a nutritional supplement and not just for breastfeeding mamas. It’s full of B vitamins, probiotics, and can have some great healthy benefits too! (Now I’m not a doctor so you should always ask your doctor if taking a new supplement or if you are wanting to know more, I’m just going off of my personal experience and research and in no way should it be construed as medical advice). That being said, I just wanted to make it clear that you don’t need to be afraid of it in the cookies! It’s in bread, beer, etc. 

Alright let’s get down to the recipe.  First, the ingredients: 

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup All Purpose Flour 
  • 1 1/2 Cup of Oats (I used Old Fashioned Oats)
  • 1 Cup Brown Sugar 
  • 1 Cup White Sugar (or Coconut Sugar works here)
  • 1 Tbsp. Pumpkin Pie Spice (Recipe below) 
  • 3 Tbsp. Brewer's Yeast - I've linked the one I found on Amazon for the best price!
  • 2 Tbsp. Ground Flax Meal 
  • 1/2 tsp. salt 
  • 1 tsp. baking soda (don't add this until LAST..I'll explain why later)

Wet Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter, softened to room temp (Tips: 1. I use one stick of salted, 1 stick of unsalted's your preference whichever you'd like to use. 2. Don't microwave your butter, let it sit out or else you will get tough, chewy cookies)
  • 1 egg, beaten 
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract 
  • 1, 15 oz. can of pumpkin puree (plain pumpkin, not pie filling which is "pre-seasoned")

Pumpkin Pie Spice: 

  • 2 tsp. cinnamon 
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger 
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. allspice 
  • **this will make more than the 1 Tbsp. needed for the recipe, but always good to have on hand

STEP 1: Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

STEP 2: Mix the flour, sugars, pumpkin pie spice, yeast, flax, oatmeal, and salt together with a whisk or wooden spoon in large bowl.  Do NOT add the baking soda yet!


STEP 3: Combine the softened butter, beaten egg, and pumpkin in a different bowl using a hand or stand mixer until combined.  It will look a little chunky, but that's okay!

STEP 4: Gradually add in the "wet" pumpkin mixture into the dry ingredients using a wooden spoon. You'll have to use some muscle here and you should end up with a pretty sticky cookie dough by the end.  Don't worry, it will probably look like it's too runny but I promise it isn't! 

STEP 5: Add the baking soda!  Once all of the ingredients are combined, add the baking soda to the cookie dough mixture.  This is a trick I have learned when baking over the years and it makes for amazingly soft, fluffy cookies every single time!! 

STEP 6: Scoop heaping tablespoons of the dough onto a cookie sheet.  Here's my FAVORITE cookie sheets in the entire world! I recommend using parchment paper too if your cookie sheet isn't non-stick. 


STEP 7: Bake cookies in the oven for 10-12 minutes.  Watch for them to start browning, you don't want the bottoms to get too dark.  When baked to desired doneness, remove and place  onto a cooling rack. 

STEP 8: EAT THEM! They are so good! I recommend storing them in the fridge for prolonged shelf life, or the freezer if you plan to make a ton

You should get about 48 cookies from this recipe.  I doubled it and ended up with 100 something cookies...which was the plan all along because I wanted to freeze them so I can easily grab them and go when the baby is here! Also, feel free to add in things like chocolate chips, nuts, etc.! I added chocolate chips to some of mine and it makes them even more delicious! 


Remember - you can make these without the Brewer's Yeast or modify to your taste! 

If you have any questions, feel free to leave them for me in the comments below!

Happy Baking! 

XoXo - Jamie 

Preparing Your Fur Baby for a REAL Baby

So anyone who knows my husband and I, also knows that we are 100% obsessed with our French Bulldog, Havana.  She is honestly our world and we could not imagine life without her!  So, when we found out we were pregnant, we both had a sense of excitement but then also panic because our "baby" would no longer be the only one around.  Havana loves people and REALLY loves my husband (me she could take or leave most days, especially if a waffle or cheese is involved) but this made us really wonder, how would she be with a baby?  What do we need to do?  Do we need special training?  Should I carry around a baby doll?  Is she going to feel completely left out and replaced?  Suddenly, the thought of raising a child also meant potentially re-raising our bulldog...if you have any sort of bully breed, especially a frenchie, you know how stubborn they can be.

After much debate, we sought out a trainer to help us prepare Havana for her new brother or sister.  Below are some of the most important things we learned and are (or at least trying to) work on with her.  At the end of the day, she is basically 25 lbs of kisses and love who wouldn't hurt a fly...literally she just stares at we feel pretty confident that with a few pointers and some patience, we can prepare her for a pretty big lifestyle change!


1. Claim Your Space - Okay this is classic dog training 101 but we are really bad with it.  Havana is with us all the time whether we are watching a movie or going to sleep, she loves being right in on the action.  But, we found out this is really just encouraging bad behavior and that in order to help keep her from thinking the baby is her personal heated stuffed animal, it is something that we needed to work on.  Our trainer told us not to be afraid to claim your space because at the end of the day, a dog wants to feel safe and wants to be lead in the pack (despite what your dog may make you think).  So, we've started small with claiming things like the couch, the doorway, etc... to try to keep her from unexpectedly jumping up when the baby is next to us.  

2. Sleeping in the Bed - Now I know some people will disagree with me here, but our trainer told us it isn't necessary to kick Havana out of the bed.  I get that some people think its disgusting to sleep with your dog in the bed and I do not judge...I also wonder if those people come home from the NYC subway and sit on their furniture!  Anyways, Havana has slept with us since she was a puppy and does still to this day.  Our trainer said if you have a dog with major anxiety that they absolutely should NOT sleep in your bed because it just encourages it.  However, a dog like Havana, who is pretty independent but just loves to snuggle, is a different story.  Dogs like this can sleep in the bed even when the baby arrives, but, you obviously need to take precautions.  For one, if you plan to co-sleep with the baby, you should make sure you have something like a Dock-a-Tot or other boundary to place around the baby.  Also, you can always kick the dog out of the bed periodically without making him/her feel bad (even though its going to make you feel awful).  For us, we plan to have a bassinet in the room when the baby is small and won't have the baby sleeping in the bed the majority of the time, but, we also have started to work on giving Havana a space of her own off of the bed where she can feel comfortable but not left out.  The trainer let us know that dogs, despite what we may think, don't really have the emotions that we as humans do in feeling "left out"...yes, they may give you those sad puppy eyes, but they aren't going to carry it with them for the next week.  

3. Introducing the Nursery - One other thing we've done is try to introduce Havana to the nursery.  Every time we work on it, we include her in the routine so she can become familiar with all of the new things in the room like the furniture, carpet, crib, etc.  Before, our nursery was an office so she didn't really find it all that exciting, but now when she goes it, she goes crazy with excitement! It's almost better than a treat to her (I said ALMOST) and I know she will always be in there with me and the baby, just watching over everyone to make sure all is okay.

4. Baby Sounds - Playing baby sounds on our phone is another tip!  Now she doesn't seem to be phased by them at all, at least right now, and this could totally be a product of growing up a "city dog" but this was one highly suggested thing from our trainer and from my research.  There are apps, videos, and tons of sources where you can find every baby sound under the sun!  Although you might not want to hear them yet, it will help your dog adjust, especially if he or she is a bit skittish. 

5. The Day of Delivery - Another thing we had to think of was, what the heck do we do with her when we have to leave to go to the hospital, especially if its in a rush or in the middle of the night?  Having a plan for this is crucial.  Don't put it off!  We've arranged for my cousin (who Havana adores) to watch her for the few days that we will be away.  But the important thing is to leave the house as if nothing too crazy is happening...I know this is easier said than done....but she is used to us leaving during the day and having someone familiar to come watch her will help to keep her calm before her brother or sister actually comes home.

6. Baby Scents - Everyone knows dogs love to smell any and everything; its how they explore and learn.  So, one of the biggest pieces of advice we've received is to bring home a baby blanket from the hospital with the baby's scent on it a day or two before you actually come home with your new bundle of joy.  I think my husband will probably come home for an hour or so to do this and leave the blanket in Havana's bed or somewhere where she lays.  That way, she can be familiar with the baby before it even comes into the house and it won't be such a shock to her.

7. Don't forget to LOVE - Now this might be obvious, but in the chaos of everything involving a new baby, it's so important to remember that you still have your fur baby and if he or she is anything like Havana or any toddler for that matter, excitement will be taking over.  I know she is going to want to be involved in everything to do with the baby, she is extremely curious, and there may be some bumps in the road, but just like your new baby, your pup will still need affection and LOVE. 


Overall, transitioning your pup is a process that is going to take some patience.  Do I expect everything to be perfect?  No way.  But being proactive and taking some steps before your new baby arrives can make life a little bit easier for your fur baby and for your as new parents! 

XoXo - Jamie