eleanor, mama, and a baby bump named ‘boy’.

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my dear friend carissa takes the most special photographs. she snapped these of eleanor and me and my baby bump the other week in the park and i just love them so.
i love eleanor very much. looking through these photos gave me that overwhelming feeling i often get of just how special she really is. and of the energy and love she can bring into a room at just 14 months old.
this sweet little girl- she is mine. mine. that little girl in the red sandals who has entered toddler-hood with the most contagious giggle but also with a touch of sass, she is mine. that little girl with 7 tiny teeth who tries to breast-feed her panda bear and battles me on eating her greens every.single.day… she is mine. that sweet spirit who is so observant at just 14 months and wants to mimic every little thing that i do (oh how she can keep me in line!)… who makes me want to be a better person, better wife, and better mother every day. she is mine. it’s so wonderful to think about, and so overwhelming at the same time. what a large responsibility we as mothers have on our shoulders… caring for these beautiful children who come to us with such innocent spirits and endless potential. who will grow up and can change the world for the better. gosh how unworthy i feel for the task. and how mortifying it can be to really think about sometimes… you know?
i remember sitting on the bathroom floor with eleanor on my lap last september while i waited for the results of my pregnancy test to show up on that little stick. i remember feeling complete shock and joy when the test read “pregnant” but at the same time experiencing this teeny tiny hint of “wait….not yet…” too. not yet, because expecting another baby meant there was a deadline on this special time of just me and eleanor and, of course, her papa. i was, and still am, loving (almost) every minute of this time as just us. and while josh and i had discussed for a long time that we were ready to get pregnant again, in that moment, i didn’t know if selfishly i’d be willing to welcome another baby into the world when life with eleanor and her papa was just: so good.
after the bathroom incident, eleanor and i drove over to josh’s office as fast as i could buckle her into that carseat and hit the gas pedal to share the news. he came out to the car to meet us. the second he sat down in the passenger seat i handed him my pregnancy test and tried not to blink so i could study his face to see where he stood. it didn’t take but 2 seconds for him to burst into some of the most joyous tears i’ve seen from him as he pulled me into his arms and hugged and kissed me, over and over. that was all i needed to know that everything would be ok. that having a deadline on our time as a family of three wasn’t so terrible. and that a family of four would be even better.
there are moments when i still wonder how i will ever love another baby the way love eleanor. but deep down, i know it will happen. just like the way I didn’t know i had this deep and profound capacity to love eleanor until she was placed in my arms. i remember looking at her little pink face for the first time and feeling this new love rush in from who knows where. but it was there. it’s still here. growing and growing by leaps and bounds every day. i’m thankful for my time with her over the past 14 months. when i think of her taking on the role of “big sister” soon, i get so excited. being her mama has been the sweetest experience. i really love it. and i love her so.
ps. there are a few more photos on carissa’s blog as well as her portfolio from this day together if you’d like to see.
  1. I've read all comments and every mother understands all you are feeling now, there are moments I also wonder if i will love another baby the way i love my daughter…(she became an angel ofert few days after her birth), now i'm expecting a baby boy on 24th of jun and can not wait to hold my child in my arms, it is the most beatiful feeling…
    the fotos of you both are great and i realy like your blog, it's te first time i'm writing a comment here (sorry for my english, it's not perfect).have e great week.

  2. Shauna

    This is such a sweet post! I have a little girl who is 21 months older than her baby brother. I remember the time I spent with her before he was born. The emotions and time right before I delivered him were the most precious with her. I just discovered your blog and absolutely love it!

    Shauna
    thescottlife.org

  3. Sladja

    so many lovely words, thoughts, and feelings… i'm blown away!
    i can only hope to have family like you do! and i sincerely hope i will!
    xx

  4. I got goose pimples when I read the text! So wonderful :)
    And the photos are wonderful, too!!!

  5. The photos are amazing, and your text is so, so moving. You know, I'm not a mum yet, I hope with all my heart I will be soon, but I think all the mamas around me told me that when you have children, your heart doesn't divide in equal parts of love for each other, it multiplies the love you feel for each of them, it keeps getting bigger and bigger in a way you couldn't possibly imagine before :) (sorry for my poor english squills :))

  6. What delicious and calming words x

  7. Eleni

    Aw, she looks like a Flower Fairy!

    You inspire me. Whenever I think about motherhood, all I see are the problems: the sacrifice, the demands on my time and emotions, the loss of identity, the stupid practical things like money and housing…but whenever I read your posts about your thoughts on motherhood, they fill me up with hope that one day, when I'm settled in a loving relationship with the right partner, bringing a baby into the world will be nothing but joyful :D

  8. You're amazing, Naomi. You really are. xo

  9. What a beautiful post (: Your blog always has me leaving with a smile on my face. You are such a sweet mama!

    xo Kayla

  10. Viv

    wonderful worlds, Thank you so much!

  11. So beautifully written! I read your blog daily, and always find it lovely, but particularly moving when you share these moments that let the rest of us know – we are not alone! Your love and faith in these open, honest posts are a true inspiration. Beautiful family, beautiful story, and of course, beautiful pictures!

  12. This post brought tears to my eyes. You write with such emotion! I hope one day I have a chance to experience that special bond you describe with Eleanor.

    Blessings to you, Josh, Eleanor, and baby!

  13. Demelza

    Beautiful post, touching enough to bring tears in to my eyes. I really really hope I might experience all this by myself someday. & ofcourse: you and Eleanor look beautiful on the pictures.

  14. i can not wait to be a mummy!

  15. Beautifully written!

  16. Bridget

    such a great post, girl. i imagine with a blog as big as yours, you're reticent to share too much, but this was totally beautiful. that feeling… welcoming a second and wondering if you'll love them as much as the first (i mean, it seems so darn unique with the first, how could it be replicated?!) is a common one.

    your family of four will be great. and can i just say: boys are the BEST.

    and so are these pictures!

  17. Rebecca

    The pictures are beautiful! My coworkers and I were just talking about having a second child (not me — I have three), just in general how you wonder how a second will fit in with the first and how you wonder how in the world you'll be able to love another. And you always do — your heart grows a million times. I compared it to the Grinch, but I guess that's not a great analogy.

  18. these pictures are beautiful!

  19. Jessica

    omg soo sweet sweet sweet ♥♥♥♥

  20. Ka†hi

    so lovely ♥

  21. so beautiful, i hope i can experience that love someday xo

  22. awhhh beautiful!!

  23. Isn't Carissa the best? She is talented in so many ways. I'm thankful for her friendship, too.

    The photos are lovely :)

  24. You just made me cry! Such a sweet story!

  25. beautiful piece and such gorgeous pictures! actually made me quite emotional! you guys are such an inspirational family!
    xxx

  26. This was such a beautiful post. So true, heartfelt, well written. Thank you SO much for sharing.

  27. these are the moments that have to be treasured for a lifetime!!!

    kisses from Spain!

  28. hilly

    this is such a wonderful post!! makes me want a family some day soon!

  29. Janell

    gosh.. they photographs are just great. The pops of color from your floral crowns make me happy! Once again, Eleanor steals the show lol. I'm sure that it feels perfect right now with just the three of you, but just imagine the perfection when your son arrives to become Eleanor's partner in adventure.

  30. Alexia

    wow, that was so beautiful.. i am close to tears! i have been following your blog for years and it has been so fun watching you and josh become amazing parents to the cutest little girl. reading your blog has made me strive to be a better person, girlfriend and sister and i am so thankful to that.
    Congratulations on the new little one. You and your little family deserve a world of happiness!

  31. Chrissy

    i love it how you can write so honest about you and your family and especially this post made me cry. it's so beautiful and i can't wait to start a family someday, too. you're really full of love and you're happy to have such a lovely family! I wish you the best and i bet you will give your little boy a lot of love!!

  32. Such great words. Thank you for sharing this. :)

  33. this post was incredibly touching. i've never experienced having a child, but i hope if i do, i will have something as beautiful as you do with your daughter! <3

  34. {Liana}

    Beautiful:) Your words, your little Eleanor, and your mama-ways.

  35. Hilary

    Me and my husband have been talking about starting a family soon, and to read about your family and the love you have for your baby is wonderful. I love how positive you are. You always hear about the negative things and it always sounds like a chore. Im sure it is hard and i dont know because i haven't had a baby yet, but knowing that it is and can be an amazing thing gives me hope. Thank you for setting a good example of motherhood.

  36. Your post was so moving! Although I dont have children of my own yet, I cant wait until I can feel the joy that you have felt with little E. Wishing you and your growing family years more of love, peace, and great joy. :)

  37. Jessica

    Thank you for your honesty. This was honestly so touching.. and beautiful.
    Love <3
    -Jessica

  38. Elise

    Isn't that the most amazing thing about love, it keeps growing. We don't have to divide love between the ones that mean the most to us but our love expands to all of our dear ones. You and E look so adorable!

  39. Elise

    Isn't that the most amazing thing about love, it keeps growing. We don't have to divide love between the ones that mean the most to us but our love expands to all of our dear ones. You and E look so adorable!

  40. Lottie

    This made me tear up. Beautifully written.

    being a mummy is a huge responsibilty but also an amazing opportunity. Sometimes the thought of it terrifies me but I think that is because I haven't experienced that rush of love yet.

  41. I actually just gave a talk in church about being examples of righteousness (based on the same titled talk from Pres. Monson) and I couldn't help but take the slant of being an example as a parent. I really find it overwhelming sometimes to think about the fact that my actions not only affect me but also my posterity and I want so much to do all the right things. It is challenging and rewarding…I also have two little ones close together. My second child was born in January and my kids are only 16 months apart and I remember having the exact same concerns as you. I miss those days of just us three, but it is so great to see my son give his sister kisses and now I get to see her smile at him. It is just too fun and although I'm busier, I am managing it much better than I anticipated. You will do just great and I can't wait to see the little man arrive!

  42. Rhianne

    Oh Naomi, this just made me cry at work but I don't mind. Thank you so much for sharing these and Eleanor with us for the last 14 months, her energy and love touches more than just a room. I really love how happy you and Josh are with your family and I can't wait to see your family of four now :)

    p.s. I had a nose at the other photos too, I love Eleanors face with the book, so cute!

  43. What a beautiful post. You have such a sweet and inspiring spirit Naomi. I love reading your blog.

  44. Naomi, this is beautiful – I love your longer, wordier posts!

  45. anna

    You are the most beautiful couple of mama and doughter!!love you!

    anna

  46. That was a beautiful post!

  47. Lindsey

    What beautiful pictures! Your friend Carissa did an amazing job! You both look so happy!

  48. You know? I was talking to my hubs about this last week. We've been discussing number two. I distinctly remember telling me, "I just don't know how it could get better than it is with just her…" Although, seeing my sister with 4, I know the love would grow and she would have siblings as her friends for life, but man… this time as a family of 3 is so good.

    I love the honesty on all fronts in this. How sweet it will be for you to see her be a big sister!

  49. Lovely photos! And what a beautiful post.

    (I hope you don't mind me asking, but do you have a favorite baby carrier that you use for when you wore Eleanor?)

  50. kwistin

    you've done it again. this is one of the sweetest and most meaningful posts i've read. thank you.

  51. those pictures are absolutely beautiful!! Eleanor is such a sweetie. you just gave me the extra push of confidence i have been needing the past couple of weeks – about to welcome the first baby into our lives, and i am feeling more inadequate as the days go. but you calmed me down quite a bit! what an amazing post. love love LOVE your blog.

  52. Brenny

    You are amazing! I feel the exact same way at the moment. I'm ready for another baby but then I look at my daughter and I panic. I don't know how to love anything else like I love her and I don't want to have a favourite and I'm scared of what if I do!

    Thanks for sharing this post and sharing your worries:) Knowing there are other moms that feel the same makes it better <3

    xx

  53. Im not a mother yet but hope to be soon. Your post is very sweet and nearly bought tears to my eyes! I wish you and your family the all the best

  54. this makes me look forward to the one day i will be a mother!

    "that little girl with 7 tiny teeth who tries to breast-feed her panda bear"

    so sweet!

  55. these are oh so special!

  56. sonya

    That was a beautiful post. You answered questions Ive had for myself in thinking of bringing another baby into this world. Thanks for sharing.

  57. Wow these are amazing photos of you and E! Such a beautiful family and a happy story!

    – Milynn

  58. i love your thoughts on being a mother. i know I can completely relate to them. The apprehension, but deep down knowing that it's the right thing… so everything will be fine. I think most mothers feel similar to how you do.

    i love following your uplifting blog. :)

  59. janis

    beautifully written + so honest. can't wait to see life unfold for your family of four!

  60. beautiful pictures, beautiful thoughts, lovely story…
    thank you for sharing so intimate things about your amazing family, you make me excited about when i'll have my own

  61. Aww…so sweet. I became unexpectedly pregnant with our son when my daughter was about 9 months old. I remember feeling such a confusing mix of shock, joy and apprehension. I love my girl so much and she's so perfect and at the time I couldn't imagine that my hubs and I could do it twice. I worried that it would ruin our special mother / daughter time, and wondered how I would ever be able to love another as much and as large as I loved her. I knew it would happen, but I just couldn't see it. AND THEN. My son was born and it was like I had known him and he had been a part of my heart for years. It was like our family hadn't been complete before him and once he arrived it was. It's hard to explain but I instantly realized that he was meant to be with us all along and we just didn't know it yet.

  62. What an absolutely lovely post. Thank you for brightening my day.

  63. Someone once told me that children multiply love…and they were so right!

  64. You made me cry, cause all the things you said about E I am now feeling with my little Stella..she has changed the life of me and my hubby forever, changed in a way we never imagined we could have and she is the brightest star of my sky….Love for your child is so important and I love the fact that I am a Mum….and when she says Mum it makes my heart weep all over again :)))

  65. I loved seeing these photographs, Carissa is a great photographer. I also love the way you write about your daughter, and about your son..

  66. I adore these! So magical! Did you make the rose crowns yourself? They are SPECTACULAR!

  67. i can't tell you how important this post is and how grateful i am to you for writing it. my husband and i keep faltering between the let's do it again, let's wait and a big part of that is not wanting to lose time with just me and my little miss too soon. my mom waited 4 years in between me and my sister and i've always felt that was just too long, my sister and i never really understood each other until adulthood and i want abby to be best friends with her siblings BUT i'm so grateful that it's just me and my little bestie everyday. anyway, this is becoming a long comment, i just want to say thank you for always sharing your heart and your sweet little (growing!) family ♥

  68. Your honesty makes this post truly beautiful. The photos are gorgeous as well.

  69. I just watched Pearl Harbor for the first time (a little behind) and thought "That is who you remind me of!" (Kate Beckinsale).

    Beautiful pictures! The panda part got me, I love little girls. So sweet.

    –heather anderson @ latterdaystyleblog.blogspot.com

  70. LeeLee

    Aww, beautiful images. Love the flowers!

  71. Sally

    These are seriously THE cutest photos I have seen in a long time!!!! SO cute and love those flower wreaths!! Always enjoy popping by your sweet blog – always makes me smile. Thanks for sharing xoxo

  72. Briel79

    This is such a sweet post. You have a lovely family!

  73. Valerie

    beautiful pictures and beautiful post. thank you for sharing this!

  74. Rach

    i had the same feeling when I was pregnant with baby number 2, and the love just comes its already there.

  75. those are some of the greatest pictures EVER! and that post? adorable. so lovely!

  76. Annie

    First born children are very, very lucky.

    No other children ever get that "3 is a magic number" time with their parents. And even then the first born always gets special time carved out for them to make up for having to share with the later children.

    Just a thought from the youngest of 4 kids.

  77. Simply awe inspiring, your words and the pictures. The bottom one would look so amazing as a canvas. I bet your home is filled with memories. So precious xx

  78. Nora

    I love your blog! I love hearing about your family and the good in the world. Thank you so much for sharing :)

  79. anna

    I also just love your dress and am looking for some maternity maxi dresses right now. Could you share where it's from?

  80. Gorgeous pictures and beautiful reflection, you'll be as great as a mom as you have been with "E". The more, the better. HAPPY DAY!

  81. claire

    I have the exact same feelings about having a second baby. My first is a month younger than Eleanor, and my second will be the same age as your little boy.

  82. such a sweet sweet post. you made me well up with tears! and i can relate to the feelings you have about Eleanor. i love my little girl so, so much that i often can't fathom how i could love another baby just as much. yet, i know i will one day. i'm sure your heart will be bursting at the seams once your little boy comes. it will be magical. for now, enjoy your alone time with Eleanor. she is going to be a great big sister!

  83. alli

    I just had my first about 6 weeks ago, so I'm nowhere near thInking about our second child, but I completely know what you mean about feeling up to the task of raising a daughter. Motherhood is the greatest calling in a multitude of ways. I find myself overwhelmed when I think of the long-term challenge, but I'm excited for the future too. And mostly I'm just in awe that my Heavenly Father has entrusted this sweet baby girl in my care. It's a marvelous thing, and I'm sure more love will abound when your little boy arrives.

  84. Marcus

    i love reading your inspirational writing, naomi. this post has brought me to tears. as my husband and i are discussing having another child, i have been feeling exactly what you have written. i'm so nervous to bring another child into this world, wondering if my love for him/her could possibly be the same that it is for my sweet hailey girl. thank you for your honest, sincere thoughts on this very subject. they are so encouraging for me to read. you are such a beautiful mother. you inspire me to be a better mother myself.

  85. Marcus

    darn it, i'm logged in on my husband's account. marcus is my husband. i'm makall. how embarrassing! :/

  86. I've been a long time follower and this is my first comment. :)

    Baby E is so sweet and will be an amazing big sister.

    I love these personal posts of yours!

  87. thanks for always being so candid and honest. the doubts, the highs, the lows, the expectations. you make me really excited for motherhood someday. thanks naomi! xo.

  88. Meg

    I love your words and the photos. They remind me of The Glow photos. Such beautiful moments captured!

  89. My daughter is a couple months younger than Eleanor and my son (in utero still) will be a couple months older than your baby boy and I felt EXACTLY the same. I thought "how odd, it feels like I'm cheating on my baby girl to have another child…" then I started to feel guilty thinking that she wouldn't get the attention I so loved to give her. I'm still working through it and have been reassured by everyone that you just DO have the capacity to love one more, then two more, and on and on as they are your children. I know it will happen but was encouraged to read your testimony when we're in very similar mommy situations :)

  90. These are beautiful pictures :) I love how you so eloquently put the amount of joy and love that comes out when you become a mother. It's the best feeling in the world!