I have a very strong memory of standing on my aunt and uncle's front porch wearing a yellow dress when my cousin, Lynn, came and said, "You're a big sister now!!!" Enter Kelly into my life. She was and is one of the biggest gifts in my life. She knows the buttons to push to get me to laugh and of course, has years of inside jokes to lean into. She is unfailingly loyal and supportive. We get along really well and this whole journey of mommyhood has seemed to deepen the sisterhood that we already shared. I love her.

It was the plan for me to be present at the hospital for her second c-section. I was there for QUINN'S BIRTH which was incredible. I've pretty much planned our summer swim lessons and vacations around being home by this time so I could run up to Vancouver for the birth of her second sweetie.

This time the date was set for Monday the 13th and I was all planned out to drive up Sunday night. When I was returning on Friday around noon from a family session around Poulsbo, I got the urgent calls from family that Kelly was being held at the hospital for what seemed like early labor and there was a very real possibility of her having an early c-section. Hello, adrenaline!!! I made calls back to Ben to map out the day: extending our rockstar babysitter's day a bit (thanks, Ruth!!), and mapping out what I'd need to go up for the weekend. Ben met me along I-5 with a packed bag and my border documents and I jetted north. (He's awesome.)

Along the way, Kelly let me know things were slowing down and that she was going home. I told her I was relieved not to be missing anything but that I was heading up so I'd be there.

We celebrated with mojitos when I arrived :).

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And then we had a super wonderful weekend. We did get a wee bit of stuff done. We mapped out a gallery wall with canvases and frames. We pulled out and organized all the tubs of toys in the house. Kelly muddled her way through piles of clothes (she's undoubtedly a clothes horse!). And then we had a whole lot of time to sleep in, eat leisurely breakfasts, go for walks, shop a little, munch on Honey's donuts, bake. We tried to rack our brains and couldn't remember the last time we'd had days like that together. Quinn was at Oma and Opa's for the weekend and we had no children. There's always been a baby or two on our days together. It was blissfully fun.

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Honey's Donuts. Everyone's been telling her how small she is so she's been throwing any caution to the wind and eating "for the baby" :).

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This nesting mama had stacks and stacks of diapers tucked around the house.

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Even Dano had a nice little "Nesting List" of tasks to accomplish.

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Getting ready that morning.

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I have a boatload of images to share from the birth where her amazing doctors again let me slide into the OR to take photos and squeal a bit over my niece. (SO thankful!!). I will do a complete post of the birth in the next couple weeks as well as share images from her newborn session in a few weeks.

However, for the picture hungry friends and family, I added in a few bonuses here.

Liv (eeek, love her name!) was born on Monday, August 13 at 3:37 p.m. 6 lbs. 9 ounces. She is pure perfection and that gorgeous all consuming love that covered that little girl from her adoring parents was amazing to see.

This is about three seconds old. She was not thrilled.

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Peeking at her mummy and daddy while the doctors continued to work. Dano said they wrapped her up like a little jedi.

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"Ninny see my mummy and baby." The grandparents race in behind.

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Love, love, love that girl. Love my sister. Love her family. You can tell, I'm feeling the love. Thanks, Kelly and Dano, for including me at such a special time. xoxo