Baby Dale » Blog

Masthead header

BabyDale #2

(Foreword: Being the tech nerd that I am, I found myself referring to this day as BabyDale 2.0, BabyDale ver. 2, etc. However, Amy quickly made me change my verbiage because of the implied “improvement” that comes along with those terms. So, BabyDale #2 it is!)

The title says it all. Or, it at least says the important part. Amy and I will be welcoming a new little bundle of joy (and poop, and crying, and sleeplessness) into this world. The due date is set at Groundhog Day 2015. As funny as that is, it’s not funny. This daddy can’t handle that day being repeated in the same way that Bill Murray handled it.

So, in normal Amy Dale fashion, here’s a picture of BabyDale #1 sporting her announcement shirt:

JH1_6455 2 copyPhoto by Jim Heine (

Layla will be 2 years old and some change when BabyDale #2 comes along and we’re shooting for a very helpful role as Big Sister!

Updates will come as we get them, but no gender, name, college degree, or life track yet!


Andrew’s First Post

**Warning: Thoughts are scrambled. Sleep is lacking. Brain works slowly.**

Let me just say this: Raising a kid is crazy.

I know that every parent that reads this will say “I could’ve told you that!”, but seriously, no one who hasn’t had a kid could ever understand.  Every person always told me how hard it would be, blah blah blah, etc., but no words of wisdom (solicited or otherwise) could ever prepare a new parent for this adventure.  (I say adventure because that sounds better than “sleep-deprived nightmare.”)

However, I digress…

Layla passed the 1 month mark back on January 9th and, like any other birthday, nothing changed. We didn’t post some cheesy picture of her with a hat that had a big one on it. (We did try to get a picture of her flipping off the camera to say “one” from her point of view, but she wouldn’t cooperate — surprise surprise.) We still haven’t written any songs for her, but she has written some for us. I think she’s going to be into either screamo or death metal, can’t tell yet.

Amy and I would have this no other way, but man it is tough. Layla is very boring right now. I, personally, am looking forward to when she can start talking to me, moving around, playing with toys and the pups, and so on and so forth. Those days will be much more enjoyable, hopefully. (If you’re a parent and you’re here to tell me otherwise, just keep it to yourself and let me feel this little bit of excitement.)


Reading back over this post, it seems very negative. NO! I have loved every minute of having Layla as part of our little family. I am beyond smitten with her and can’t help but let her sleep on the heater that is my chest. To say she is daddy’s little girl is a gross understatement.



This is my little family. There isn’t a thing I wouldn’t do to protect, provide and care for them. If you mean my family harm, don’t give me a chance to get in your way, because it won’t be pretty.

The belly.

I gotta be honest… the pregnant belly is something else. It’s the universal sign of motherhood, excitement, and misery that results in one of the most beautiful miracles the Lord has our bodies encounter. You either look at a pregnant woman and go, “awww” or “poor thing”, but either way, you have respect and joy for that person’s journey as a new or experienced parent.

When you first find out you’re pregnant you’re thinking, “I don’t want my belly to be the size of a watermelon!” But, oooooh, how the grass is always greener. After 6.5 months, I was pretty sad I wasn’t really showing. I mean, I could tell I had a baby, my husband and close friends could tell (sorta). I could completely and easily hide the fact I was pregnant (if I had wanted to), until I was well into 7 months.  I got weird looks when I couldn’t make it up a flight of stairs. I mean, afterall, I look like I’m in good shape, why couldn’t I just jump that flight of stairs? Sometimes I would even forget I was pregnant and run myself in the ground with exhaustion. I feel that growing belly is there to remind you that you are FLIPPIN’ MAKING A PERSON INSIDE YOU. Well, I wanted to be reminded more… obviously.

I was jealous of those round little bellies popping up on mommies around me, even those that were months behind me. Complete strangers were excited for them, asking them questions and I’m just sitting there whispering to Layla, “Come on, woman! Give me SOMETHING!” But how she is growing, she is perfectly fine and I’ve loved still feeling and knowing she is there, even if others don’t.

I didn’t take weekly or monthly pictures. I know, I know… “I’ll regret it later.” Well, I can promise you, there was nothing to show until recently. But I did manage to take a shot at month 1 and towards the beginning of month 9. They are quick snapshots and I wore the same clothes in both shots. (Will I regret my choice of outfit? Yes, but I don’t care. I wasn’t going for cute preggers. Mostly because I didn’t think I’d ever share these images.)

On left: April 6, 2012 – 1 month along.                                             On right: November 10, 2012 – 1 month left.

So, there you go. Pure… vulnerability. My only regret? not wearing my socks in the pic on the right. My feet were cold.
More updates to come including Layla’s room and random other things that I wonder if other new mommies think to themselves.:)

Sarah - Just found your cute lil baby blog from your photography website– may I just say how much I love this little photo-progression!? Much better than the traditional month-by-month shots! :) Anyways, congrats!

Marie - You’re glowing!! Love it!! Love you!!

Katie Bailey - Precious!! :) I’m sure whatever you wonder if I thought to myself, it’s true. There are many things people don’t share with you about pregnancy, childbirth, and newborns! Good luck!! Not too much longer to go :)

The 4D.

I know I have been HORRIBLE at updating this. Things got crazy busy after the last post and are starting to wind down, just to start back up again with Layla’s arrival in less than a month. I simply just can’t believe it!! There is so much to share! I will do my best to fill you in as soon as I can. It’s been exciting, crazy, fun, painful, and more all at the same time. I wouldn’t trade it for anything!

So, for now, I leave you with the 4D Ultrasound we had done on October 5.
There Layla is… sleeping like her Daddy and sucking her thumb like her Mama…


Let the ____ Begin

Let the NESTING begin.

I spent all weekend cleaning. Cleaning out closets, drawers, rooms, and more. It was sooo refreshing to get rid of furniture, clothes, and things that I can’t believe I’ve held on to for so long. I have always loved the feeling of deep-cleaning my space, but this nesting thing is real!

Let the NURSERY begin.

Today Layla’s bed comes! This is the first “real” thing we have for her thus far. We have a little rubbermaid tub with some various little onesies, blankets and gifts people have given us already, but nothing else. I’ve been busting my butt to keep up with just life in general while catching up and finishing up all the work I need done before Layla gets here. I want to be free of editing and album building when that little girl is in my arms. I’m amazed at mommy’s who spend the entire process babying everything. Nothing wrong with it, just hasn’t been me. To quote one of my favorite internet ladies, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!” At least around here there hasn’t been. But now, the clock is ticking!

I finally started a Pinterest page with babydale stuff. It has been fun just posting things that are fun, cute, and just our style. Not necessarily things we will buy, but things to consider, look for and just be inspired by. We aren’t going full-on nursery in our house; we still want the second room to be functional and flow into the rest of the house, since we have a really open floor plan. So we are going with simple, colorful, and not “baby” looking things for Layla’s room. Here are some of our favorite things and inspirations:

(We ordered this crib: Babyletto Modo 3-in-1 crib from

(Color inspiration with another Babyletto crib. Layla’s bedroom is very close to the wall color on the left.)

(More inspiration. Music. Photography. Color. Retro Mod. Simple Design.)


Let the BELLY begin.

The belly is growing and growing. I can see it and heavens, I can feel it! So from this point on, she is just adding fat on and growing from a melon to a beachball. I’ll try and post pics from this point on. In the meantime, here is another pic from our session last Monday.:)

Hoffer Photography | Proof Galleries: Dale &emdash; Dale-029
(Photo by Hoffer Photography)

Let the THIRD TRIMESTER begin.

Well, we are in the home stretch. I can’t believe it! In three months, we will be holding little Layla, seeing her face, wiping her butt, and just looking at her with that dumb-struck-worn-out-totally-infatuated-new-parent stare. But until then, there is much to do business-wise, house-wise, financial-wise and just life-wise. You know what I gotta say… BRING IT ON!!


I am so excited about this!!!! 

I’ve been TERRIBLE at taking month-to-month photos, sorry. Just not a lot of change and at times it has been really frustrating. I knew I wanted some photos of Andrew and I before Layla makes her appearance, but wasn’t sure how to make that happen.

Tony and Amy Hoffer in Philadelphia, PA are incredible photographers and more so, incredible people and we couldn’t be more blessed to have them in our lives. I was shooting two weddings with Jim Heine, another friend in the Philly area over the weekend and I decided to stay to see the Hoffers and do a shoot with them. Even though I knew it would be a stretch $$$ wise,  I bought Andrew a surprise ticket for him to come join me. It was SOOO FUN! We needed the little getaway and of course, after 4.5 years of marriage, Andrew and I needed some pics together. I didn’t want to do the shoot without him.

I wanted to share the pictures with you and let you know how much they mean to us. It was fun being on the other side of the camera and I really feel the excitement and appreciation that my own couples and families feel when I deliver their photos. But at this time, Andrew and I are enjoying and loving each other’s company and support so much. Hanging out with Tony and Amy was an extension of that. We are just ecstatic about Layla and life in general.

Andrew, Amy and Layla (belly style) as done by The Hoffers…
Go view the whole blogpost here:


(It rained for most of the shoot, so we took cover for a while, and then gave in to the rain later. We were open for anything.)


(I may offend some people, but this is my homage to cheesy maternity poses.)

(This is one of my faves. Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood still stands as one of my favorite shows ever on TV.)

(And the belly for everyone. Had to push her out pretty good, but she’s stylin’ and profilin’.)

(Behind the scenes: Tony checking out Layla, who became a little camera-shy, as she re-situates herself.)