I’ve been traveling A LOT lately – the last few months have been a whirlwind…and my biggest challenge has been finding time to really connect with my children. Technically, I am connected everyday when I’m at home with them doing normal mommy duties – like bathing them, putting them to sleep, feeding, etc…and I even stay connected when I’m on the road via calls and FaceTime. But what I’m talking about is a deeper connection outside of normal mommy duties…like just having a fun day and bonding with my kids…with no outside pressures of deadlines I have to meet or worrying about emails that I need to return. The type of connection that you have with your child when they are truly the sole focus. And I decided that those moments won’t just happen…unfortunately in this day and age where everything goes so fast – you have to schedule it like a meeting…or a date with your kids.

This past weekend – I made up in my mind that I would take a day to do just that. I wanted to do something fun and create a new experience that they haven’t had. So I decided to take them to the Miami Children’s Museum. The first step in me having this connection with them was having NO HELP. If you need it, by all means get it. But for me, I tend to have a lot of help around – I call them The Village. Whether it’s my Dad, the nieces, my sister, a cousin or an aunt…I roll with a tribe!  And when you have a lot of help around…you tend to LEAN IN on them because you figure – BREAK TIME!  But, with my husband out working on a photography project, I was going all in tackling this adventure with an 11.5 month old and a sassy 2.5 year old! (for full disclosure, my stepson is with us for the summer and although he is not considered help, he did his fair share to help keep an eye out when I needed to get ready or pack the car!)


August 6, 2014.  I was already four days past my due date.  Three weeks earlier, my OB-GYN said I had started dilating and was 1-2 centimeters.  I started telling close friends I could go into labor at any minute.  But here I was…on this Tuesday morning…41 weeks pregnant – and still roaming the streets.

The day before, I went in for the fun-filled cervix check.  My doc came in…“you’re still here???”  She rammed…I mean – checked my cervix…I was 4-5cm dilated.  But no signs of labor.  She scheduled me to be induced on that Friday.  I was upset.  I really didn’t want to be induced again…what’s the deal with my babies wanting to stay all cozied up in my womb?

I called my awesome doula, Na’imah Delpeche, to share the update.  Na’imah had been by my side during my first delivery – and she was one of the first calls I made when I found out I was pregnant again.  She suggested I book an induction massage and I was able to get her contact to come to my house the same day.  For two hours, she massaged my feet focusing on all the key pressure point areas that would help to naturally induce labor.  I was willing to try anything.  I even let my sister come over later that night with her special “Woosah oil” and rub my belly with it….I even fell for my husband’s pitch late that night.  “You know they say sex will help induce labor…maybe we can give it a shot? ” 41 weeks in…feeling like a whale…and super uncomfortable – sex was the last thing on my mind.  But at that point – I was willing to try it all.

Between the Woosah oil, induction massage and sex – I expected my water to break in the middle of the night.  I jumped up a few times, feeling the sheets, in hopes of finding a wet spot.  Nope…nothing.  I had a dentist appointment the next morning and I had enough people telling me I shouldn’t be driving at that point…so I asked Bob to take me.  But first, I wanted to grab breakfast at a local diner that I’ve been wanting to take him to.  I kissed Miss Bobbi (my 18 month old) good-bye and as I was leaving, I told our nanny that I was starting to feel funny…but I would be home right after the appointment.  And so begins the journey:

The night before going into labor, my sister came over and rubbed castor oil all over my belly.
The night before going into labor, my sister came over and rubbed her special blend of oils all over my belly. She calls it the “Woosah oil” made to help you go into full relaxation mode.


This post is about nine months late…my how time flies!

I had every intention of writing about my pregnancy – but before I knew it – baby #2 was here! I’m looking forward to sharing the actual birth journey…but let’s go back to where it all began.

Bobbi Elle was born on February 11, 2013. My husband, Bobby, and I knew that if we wanted more children, we would have to act quickly. We wanted our children to be close in age…and with me heading into my late, late 30’s – we didn’t have much time to waste. So we decided to start trying to conceive in November 2013…nine months after Bobbi Elle was born. We figured it took 9 months of trying to finally get pregnant with Bobbi…so if we started in November – we should be nice and pregnant at least by February of the following year. So in November, I started paying closer attention to my period/ovulation app. The week of ovualation was a busy week for me and we were also planning a quick family trip to Orlando. We packed up our rental van with Miss Bobbi, Khari (my step-son) and the nieces and nephew. We were meeting our cousin Jessie in Orlando with some of her friends and more family. It was a busy weekend for us and I completely forgot that we should, at some point, have sex. On that Saturday, as we were having a fun family dinner at the hotel restaurant…I checked my phone and realized – today is the last day to go for it! So i whispered to my husband – “ummmmm…you down for a quickie?? We can leave the kids at dinner and come back…no one will notice!” and without hesitation – he jumped from the table and damn near broke his ankle to get to the door. I asked my cousin to hold the kids down at dinner – “we have some business to handle..we’ll be back…” She gave us that look. And in our first try for baby #2 – it happened. During a timeout at dinner…taking less than 20 minutes…it couldn’t have been more romantic.


During my first maternity shoot – I remember my cousin saying to me – “if you get pregnant again, I bet you won’t be going thru all of this drama!”  Drama being, having a make-up artist and hair stylist prep me for the shoot.  But I knew different.  Being pregnant can do a number to your body and even self-esteem.  But being pregnant is also an amazingly beautiful thing!  So I knew that all of the drama was well worth it!  I once again wanted to capture my maternity journey and also have photos to share with my child once they got older.  I did an amazing, sexy shoot when I was pregnant with Bobbi Elle that was shot by April Belle Photos.  I shared those photos in an earlier post – Maternity Shoot for A Sexy Mama!

This time around, being that I was expecting my second child – I wanted to do something that would incorporate my daughter and my husband.  I was 7 months pregnant, which is the perfect timing for a maternity shoot.  I linked up for this session with Erica Rodriquez of Mau Loa Photography.  She found a gorgeous park in Miami, Amelia Earhart Park, that had awesome backdrops and scenes for the perfect photo shoot.  I took advantage of the scenery and got some beautiful shots of Bobbi Elle who is 14 months old.  And our family shots capture life as is – knowing that it is just about to ramp up with a new addition in our lives!  Below are some of my favorite selections from the session.

Maternity Shoot at Park

Maternity Shoot at the park

Maternity Shoot at the park

Maternity Shoot at the park

Maternity Shoot at the park with daughter