Cloth Diapering

Recently I have embarked on the adventure of cloth diapering and I LOVE IT. Best decision I’ve made as a new mom, hands down. Here are a few of my favorite products:





You can follow my adventures, mishaps and new recommendations on the blog. I shop at GoGo Natural – be sure to check out their site for helpful information and high-quality natural baby products- there is a wealth of information for the new and veteran cloth-diapering parent. So many of my questions were answered and fears alleviated because of their helpful service. Enjoy!

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The heat has cooked my brain.

I know, I know… HUGE hiatus over the past three weeks or so. Between my surprise birthday weekend (my best friend's visit was the surprise… not my birthday), the Month of Out-of-State Weddings Extravaganza and Other Festivities, and EXCESSIVE HEAT on top of my fun first-trimester symptoms, I've hardly had a moment to gather my thoughts. I'm gearing up for the final wedding in Pasadena this weekend, and ALSO getting ready to experience everything that goes along with second-trimester joys. I am still, however, eagerly awaiting that magical day when I wake up out of the fog I've been in over the past three months, jump out of bed, run a few laps around the neighborhood, cook up some garlicky pasta, eat my body weight in fried chicken, and finally clean the entire house top to bottom; then, after said activities I will not have an overwhelming desire to sleep for 24 hours straight, or die. For now, we just avoid having guests over altogether for fear that they might get attacked by the tornado of paperwork that we haven't bothered to sort through yet.

Over the Fourth of July weekend I was in Minnesota as a bridesmaid in my friend's wedding. I'd say the ratio of pregnant women-to-non-pregnant women in the wedding party (including groomsmen's wives) was 1 in 2, no joke. I was told there were 7 pregnant women at the wedding, and there were 14 attendants, so… huh, look at that. I can do math after all. A childhood friend of mine, fellow bridesmaid and accidental travel partner happens to be due in January as well- three days after me! She is convinced that she is having a boy, and that I am having a girl, and that they will have the same birthday and when they grow up they will get married. If the random ways we connected over the weekend are any indication of our kids' future, it may not be such a long shot after all.

The wedding I'm in this coming weekend in Pasadena is also chock-full of women with child, especially in the wedding party. I mean, really, it's just kind of getting ridiculous.

On another note, this whole time I haven't had even the slightest inkling of what I may be having. There's no reason that I should know anything at this point, but for some reason I've been thinking that I'm going to have a girl. I don't necessarily want one over the other- I would be perfectly happy with either one, of course- but for whatever reason girl names stand out to me more, and I absolutely melt when I see, for example, a little girl all dressed up in a red velvet, white-fur trimmed dress over her summer pants and sandals because she ABSOLUTELY REFUSED TO WEAR ANYTHING ELSE and, according to her mom, wouldn't leave the house unless she could wear her Santa dress, bringing Christmas in July at its finest. My mom immediately decided that I was having a boy, so given a 50/50 chance we may just have to start a guess-the-sex pool after all.

Speaking of adorable little girls, please visit and follow the updates on this precious 5-year-old. Two weeks ago today, which is really hard to believe given all that has taken place since then, doctors discovered a rare malignant tumor in her brain. The prayer movement has become a globe-spanning wildfire, the only kind we want to spread further until everyone is praying for Kate and her family. As a soon-to-be mom, I cannot even begin to fathom the pain of what her parents are enduring, but I have tremendous respect for their trust in God, and I can only hope to have such unshakable faith should we ever be faced with the unimaginable.

Baby Daddy.

I'm warning you, I'm gonna get mushy for this post. I just can't help myself anymore. And what better day to salute my husband than today- Father's Day!

With each day that goes by, I can hardly believe my good fortune to be married to such an amazing, self-sacrificial, loving, humble, wonderful man. I am so blessed by his commitment to me and our family, for being willing to take care of me when I can barely get my butt off the couch (or just because he's being nice and letting me relax), for getting up early and going to work every day to provide for us, for taking care of things around the house that I normally would do myself, for cooking amazing food, and for proving again and again what an amazing dad he already is. 

God knows I am not an easy person to get along with sometimes. But Cody's patience is unmatched, I swear- patience of a saint, as my mom would say. When it's easy to throw your hands up in the air and say, "I give up!" Cody always takes on the challenge of making things right. He works hard to make our relationship work, as all worthwhile marriages require, and it makes it easy to take on the task myself. He reminds me every day that I am number two in his life… right behind God. I love being number two. It's right where I belong.

Sometimes I just can't find the right words to tell my husband how much I love and appreciate and need him every day; when these times happen, I just have to be near him and hope that he knows that this is true. I can't believe I get to share my life and now the adventure of parenthood with my best friend in the whole world… a person I love so much that sometimes I think my heart will simply explode. 

Happy Father's Day, Cody. Thank you for being you, i.e. AMAZING. Our child is going to love you more than me… just like our dogs 😛


Preliminary name list

Some names we like (we've only just begun):

Boys: Luke or Lucas

Girls: Ella or Elle
Evelynne (I like, Cody doesn't)
Callie (then I paired it with Alley… NEVER MIND.)

If you hate your child, name it: 
Homobono. I actually came across this today. Means "good man." As if the meaning matters when your name is "Homobono." ONLY PARENTS WHO HATE THEIR CHILD GIVE IT THIS NAME. If you named your child this and you are offended, no one cares because now your child has to live with being called HOMOBONO for the rest of his life, or just "Homo" or "Boner" or "Homoboner." Good job with that one.


Cody wrote a great blog about his life-altering excursion to the grocery store last week. He went to Fry's for some milk and decided, with absolutely no prompting from me, to start the process of stocking up on diapers early. From what we hear, once baby arrives, we'll never have enough. From our experience with Cruz and his four diaper changes in three hours, the rumors were proven completely true. You can read about his shopping trip here. He's just so sweet I could pinch his cheeks. 

Actually, I think I'll go do that right now.

Scary things.

I finally heard back from my doctor yesterday, and it wasn't the great news of anemia I was hoping for. Not to worry, Internet, I'm not dying, and my baby isn't either, but I was diagnosed with mild dysplasia, which fortunately typically clears up on its own. "Nothing to get in a panic about," said the doctor.  So naturally, this translated in my head to, "YOU HAVE CERVICAL CANCER AND YOU ARE GOING TO DIE," which incited panic, which brought on the daily hormonal breakdown, which caused my dear parents to worry sick about my state of mind. Don't worry Mom and Dad, I'm gonna be OK! However, mild dysplasia is scary for two reasons: first, pregnancy suppresses your immune system; and second, moderate and severe cases of dysplasia commonly lead to cervical cancer. AWESOME.

I haven't had a girl exam in many, many years, but every time I had one they always came back normal. I've always been healthy, tests always came back normal, and if there was ever anything wrong, it was never something that a simple change in diet or the like couldn't fix. As much as Cody and I struggle with the task of parenthood that lay ahead of us, and as much as it excites us (we are an emotional roller coaster, no?), we see God's hand at work in more ways than we even thought possible. If I didn't get pregnant, I never would have gone to the doctor for a checkup, because CLEARLY I'm perfectly healthy… and if I started to feel otherwise, maybe I would have gone. And that's a big maybe. And if I hadn't gone to the doctor, who knows whether the dysplasia would have ever reached a more advanced stage and resulted in a devastating diagnosis, when it was too late, when I finally got my stubborn behind to the doctor. At the risk of sounding melodramatic, and although we will never know it… my baby may have saved my life.

On that note, the only thing I have to do as a result of this diagnosis is a procedure called a colposcopy when I am about five months along, where the doctor will somehow look at my cervix through a microscope, the mental images of which are just not OK. I'm having flashbacks to my seventh grade biology class, where we had tables lined up with microscopes… Ew. 

Babysitting and photo fun

For those who know Cody and me, it is safe to say that when it comes to babies, we have absolutely no clue what we are doing. Although I have a brother and a sister and a nephew who is more like a brother than a nephew, I grew up an only child, and Cody grew up the oldest of three. I remember when I was eight years old I begged my mom for a little brother or sister because my friend who lived down the street just got a new baby sister, and she was so cute, I wanted one too. Needless to say I never got my wish, but I wouldn’t change a thing. I liked my life growing up as an only child- it’s not as lonely as people who grew up with siblings will try to make you believe, I promise. And while we all have our issues, I would like to think I’m not a total screw-up as a result.

Yesterday, Cody and I spent the afternoon with our friend’s little 7-month-old, Cruz, while his parents Jason and Jessica Williams were out doing a photo shoot for their new business, Session 9 Photography. Jay and Jess are two of the best people we have ever had the privilege of calling friend, and their little boy is so adorable you could just eat him up. So it was a no-brainer to embark on our first babysitting adventure as a couple with Cruz at the helm. 

What a day! We had fun rolling around on the floor with him, keeping him entertained with his toys and various ridiculous faces, watching Finding Nemo, taking him for a ride in his stroller through their neighborhood, marveling at the sheer volume of spit-up that a single child can produce, and learning that baby wipes aren’t meant to be thrown by themselves into a Diaper Genie (definitely something I will NEVER FORGET AGAIN). Cruz is such a happy baby that even when he’s fussy he’s still a joy to be around. And I am so happy that we have this particular family alongside us through this totally unpredictable journey we find ourselves on, because their own experiences and uncertainties parallel ours in so many ways, and things have turned out more than fine for them. It’s such an encouragement to both of us.

On another note, Cody and I are going to start taking belly pictures in the very near future. I’m not showing yet, but it will be fun to document the progress over the next several months. If I were funnier and more creative and also 25 weeks further into my pregnancy, I would have thought of this first, but I digress.

We have our first photo shoot with Session 9 next weekend and we are SO EXCITED. I say first shoot because they will be doing our maternity and hospital shots as well! The only experience I have had as a “model” was at our wedding- and funny story, I was so barfy at our wedding that I spent half the time that would have been spent taking pictures in the bathroom, and now I’m in my first trimester and am feeling barfy all the time… so I’m 0 for 2 at the moment. Good news is that I haven’t actually “finished the job,” if you know what I mean; I just constantly feel on the brink of it. It will be fun to get all decked out for this shoot since these days my favorite thing to do is not wear makeup so I don’t have to make the effort to take it off at night, because that is A LOT OF EFFORT. I am anxiously awaiting my blood test results from the doctor so they can tell me that yes, I am indeed anemic, and then they will give me a magical pill that will take the edge off the simply unreal fatigue that is brought on by this building-a-human-being business, and I can finally wake up from this haze I have been living in for the past month and start to feel normal again.

And yes, I am fully aware that “normal” as I once knew it has ceased to exist. This “new normal” will be quite a ride.


Alley 6
I grew up in Scottsdale, Arizona
before it became the $40,000 millionaire capital of the world. The
Scottsdale I remember is quaint, western, and scenic, and up until I
graduated high school the outskirts of town were not yet connected to the
town of Carefree, which is halfway to Flagstaff.

I will admit that in my early twenties, after graduating college, I
fell prey to a lifestyle that led to a lot of stupid choices along the
way that did a lot more damage than I could have known at the time. But
it was those mistakes and getting sick of the lame wannabes that
surrounded me that led to a curiosity that there is indeed something
bigger and better out there… and that something is Jesus. He grabbed
hold of me in 2003 and has never let go, never let me down, and never
ever left my side.

I met my husband when I was working as an academic advisor at Grand
Canyon University in Phoenix. He claims that he knew I would be someone
very special to him from the moment we met… well, the line worked. Haha! We got married in November 2007 at the University
Club in downtown Phoenix. It was a fairy tale wedding, except for the
fact that I couldn’t stop vomiting the entire time. Other than that, it was great. I wouldn’t change the
outcome of that day for the world- I love my husband more than words can say.

Our marriage has been a fantastic adventure ever since. We have
lofty goals and dreams of wild travels that may have to wait a while,
but we’re working on fulfilling our dreams in other ways in the

We have two dogs, THOR! and Hanalei, both of which are Cavachons, or
Furry White Bolts of Chewing and Pooping Thunder. I lovingly refer to
them as my “fur-kids,” and I their “fur-mom,” but Cody isn’t having any
of that crap. They are our “dogs,” and we are “dog owners.” Bah
freaking humbug.

My husband and I weren’t planning on having a baby any time soon, but TA DA! God had other plans. My own little surprise is
the inspiration for this site, where I plan to document all the ups,
downs, hormone-induced breakdowns, and inevitable joys that are sure to
accompany my husband and I on our journey toward parenthood and beyond.
They say that taking baby steps is the best way to accomplish a
daunting, overwhelming, and totally worthwhile goal… hence the name
“Baby Steps to Mom.”

Our daughter, Linnea Joelle, was born in the middle of the night on my husband’s 30th birthday. You can find our birth pictures with a link to her birth story here. She is simply the most amazing gift either of us has ever received. 


In 2009 I started my own business called No Strings Virtual Solutions, helping creative entrepreneurs with the administrative tasks of running their companies. I work from my home office, giving me the opportunity to not only bring in some bacon but also be here to care for Linnea.  It’s a blessing to be able to contribute to our income and enjoy watching our daughter grow up. I wouldn’t want to miss a second of her life if I could help it.

I love NesQuik, hot fudge sundaes, and sewing- preferably all at the same time. I also dig thrift shopping and Chuck Taylors. And my favorite color in the whole wide world is pink.


Welcome to my blog.