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Samantha's Diary

Hear about all the ups and downs of Samantha's pregnancy.

April 4th, 2010

My husband has officially turned our family into the Griswolds as we depart for LAX singing Holiday Rooooaaad on a seven day tour of Southern California theme parks. (Yes, including a stop at Wally World.)

April 6th, 2010

Spring break in Southern California? Highly recommended. The stress, mud, and mixed spring weather of NYC is well behind us and the girls are loving the blue sky -- summer is in full tilt here. I hadn't thought ahead to how labor intensive the theme park tour would be (not that it would have deterred us). A new theme park every day... Today we are at Disneyland and since the girls are only 3 and 4, they need to be accompanied on all of the rides. In the 'If you need to ask, you already have the answer' category, I keep getting odd looks when I ask the teen/twentysomethingers who pilot the rides if they are safe for a pregnant woman.

April 17, 2010

Dinner at Elio's with college roommate, Laura and her husband. She expresses shock that I went for a third, saying she is not as brave. Anxiety begins to set in.

May 13, 2010

Today I was asked to be the Keynote speaker at the Women's Venture Fund gala event to be held at Capitale in New York in early October. Amazing honor, huge event, great cause -- but will I be ready to take it on six weeks post partum? Too exciting an opportunity to pass up. I will make it work.

June 2, 2010

Throughout pregnancy people have been saying how good I look "for a pregnant person." And each time it makes me want to work that much harder to look great and chic while pregnant. Why do people expect pregnant women to wear muumuus and stay home? Pregnancy gives us a glow so might as well make the rest of me shine too. Off to get a blowout in preparation for a fun cocktail party tonight.

June 12, 2010

At a family wedding in Block Island. Right before bedtime Ella stumps us with this question: "Everyone comes from a Mommy. But the first person couldn't have. Where did that person come from?"

June 18, 2010

Why did I agree to stay in the dorms at my husband's college reunion? Dartmouth has provided us with cots, turn-of-the-century unrenovated dorms, complete with their original blankets and the SHARED bathrooms include towels so small they barely cover my baby bump. On the plus side, Mitch is giddily nostalgic and Ella and Ruby think it's heaven to be in Hanover.

June 28, 2010

Bermuda babymoon!Last time we went on a babymoon I was pregnant with Ruby. We went to Barbados and while sitting on the beach each day we read aloud 'The Baby Name Bible' by Pamela Redmond Satran and Linda Rosenkrantz. It boasts 50,000 names and having chosen to keep our baby's gender a surprise, we read the entire book because we needed to select a boy and a girl name. No exaggerating, we read the entire book aloud (two days, roughly twenty hours) to gauge each other's reactions to the names. Our interest in baby names had officially shifted from fascination to obsession. I could never have imagined that we would find a way to take it to a whole new level with our third child. Cut to this babymoon. Ironically it is Mitch who keeps reminding me that we might want to start discussing the name. The Think Tank is only a few weeks away and we need to present the group with a top five we love and top five we hate. Somehow I am already a bit burned so I delay the conversation.

June 29, 2010

Being in Bermuda is wonderful. When it was just us and Ella we had a lot of alone time after she went to sleep and during her naps on weekends. Once we had Ruby, the alone time was almost gone. There was always someone having trouble falling asleep at night and Ella stopped napping. So being alone here with Mitch is an enormous luxury. Just reading a book next to him is wonderful.

June 30, 2010

The beach set up here leaves a bit to be desired so I decided to cut back on the virgin pina coladas and water today so that I didn't have to run to the far away bathroom every five minutes. I would soon learn the perils of seven months pregnant with limited liquids. Within hours my husband was telling me "No Bermudian baby" and timing contractions while on the phone with Obstetrics at the Bermuda hospital. A frantic email to my one friend who lives on Bermuda began preparation for a postpartum stay in paradise, but my OB was right to chalk it up to dehydration. As I drank water, the contractions spaced out and eventually stopped. On the bright side, room service and a movie.

July 6th, 2010

Dreaming of dirty martinis. Extra dirty, extra olives. The special drink will have to wait.

July 13th, 2010

Agree to appear on Amy Tara Koch's Better TV segment for her 'Bump It Up' pregnancy style book. Husband asks me why I am doing this. Answer is easy. Amy asked me and I believe you should always say yes to helping friends unless it hurts you personally to do so. She puts me in a leopard print floor length nightie and as soon as I put it on I know this will be a pregnancy staple. Amy agrees to lend it to me for the duration. Excellent.

July 15th

Grab a cab to head to The Crosby Hotel to meet our think tank. After personally recruiting 400 experts ranging from Donald Trump to Suze Orman to opine on topics in my books (Experts' Guide Series published by Random House) I have an uneasy feeling about leaving expert selection and recruitment up to the (awesome) 'Pregnant in Heels' team.  Mitch is even worse.  He's convinced the show crew is outside Penn Station recruiting the kind of people who would interrupt their vacation to New York City to be on a TV show. How wrong we were! The Think Tank group was amazing -- including a Stanford linguist, an Emily Dickinson Award winning poet and a branding executive from Landor. I walked into the room and shed all concerns. We made tons of progress. The poet talked about the musicality of the name, the linguist about the history, and the branding guru about names that can be "owned."  This makes over-the-top look like the bottom!

July 20, 2010

Today is a big day for baby naming. We have the focus group. Mitch insists we need to have "calibration" names on the list. His point: If someone in the group loves the name "Steve" for a baby born in 2010 there is no need to listen to anything that person says. We refined the list of family attributes to be tracked by the statisticians -- every time one of the words pops up in think tank discussion it will be tracked.  I'm convinced we've gone nuts but still looking forward to the day ahead. Tonight is our dinner party. I will be wearing the Amy Tara Koch preggo nightie I mentioned. We are gathering an eclectic group of close friends to react to and discuss our final names. In the mix are a world renowned jazz musician, a sports marketing guru, my literary agent, a top political strategist, a guerilla marketing pro, a Fortune 500 executive and a video artist. Our friends have open minds but will no doubt voice strong opinions. They know how baby name obsessed we are, so they are excited to get into the mix. At this point we love three names. Here is a portion of the email we sent to our friends in advance of the dinner:


Mitch and I came up with our own set of naming criteria to keep in mind when thinking about our names:

1. No names that begin with J because we don't want JJ initials

2. No names that begin with "E" for Ella or "R" for Ruby because we want each of our kids to have their own initials.

3. Our son will have the last name "Jacobs" which is the 213th most common surname in America. This means we want a first name that doesn't already have 200 Facebook entries when added to Jacobs. Eg "Michael Jacobs" is way too common; the first name should not be higher than 200 on the social security popularity list

4. Easy to spell. No fancy spellings and we don't want our kid spelling his name in a bar all through college

5. No decorative names like "August" or "Jade" (though we relaxed this rule when we named Ruby, when you make the rules, you can change them!)

6. No emotional baggage or declaration -- for example, why pressure your kid with the name Honor.

7. Ideally, a two or more syllable name reducible to a one syllable nickname (Samantha, Sam)

July 24, 2010

I am so excited about the feedback we've received and super confident that we have narrowed down our perfect shortlist of amazing names for our boy soon-to-be. Mitch is having a harder time with all the input and keeps mumbling about how there may be a reason there have been 5+ billion births and no one has ever used a combination of a Think Tank, Focus Group, and a Friends dinner to pick a name.

August 2, 2010

Today I received an email from Tom Sepanski, head of naming for Landor who was a member of our baby naming think tank.  He wrote, "If I've understood everything correctly so far, I'd venture to say that your primary objective is ownability –- you want your son to really own his name." Couldn't have said it better myself.

August 13, 2010

As a big fan of keeping up activity until the finish line, Mitch and I celebrated dear friend and cousin Lenore's bday by dancing the night away! Was hoping to induce labor but not yet.

August 15, 2010

Due date! I'm experiencing light contractions. Mitch's parents whisk the girls away for a day at the zoo. We can't remember ever being home alone on a Sunday so we decide to make the most of it by watching a two hour reality show. We make it 20 minutes in before I tell Mitch to get me to the hospital...NOW! It is a sunny summer day so we walk there with our overnight bag and two blocks from the hospital we settle on a name. We then run into a friend of Mitch's from high school. After chatting for a few minutes too long I nudge my husband and say, "Lovely seeing you but I am in active labor." We are back on track. As soon as I get out of the elevator at Lenox Hill Hospital my water breaks.

August 16, 2010

Bowen is beyond our dreams. He is delicious and bright eyed and we can't believe he is ours. Today the girls will be coming to meet him for the first time. I can't wait!

October 2, 2010

Ruby turns three today. We celebrate with family. Our baby nurse is with us which allows us to really focus on Ruby for her big day.

November 9, 2010

Trying on a dress to see if it fits for the black tie gala we are attending this weekend. Mitch looks askance. "It doesn't fit right?" I ask. "No it does," he responds. "I am just not sure you will be happy fading into the crowd so much in a simple black dress." At 12 weeks postpartum does he really think I want to do anything but! Black will be my best friend for a while.

November 11, 2010

Parent teacher conferences for Ella and Ruby. They are thriving. Making the kids the centers of our lives couldn't feel any more rewarding. The same energy we put towards baby naming continues into parenting. A Twitter friend's new book on parenting emotions just arrived so I am headed to curl up with it. I will read until my eyes can't stay open. Three is chaos but we figure we'll sleep again in 18 years.

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