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Bye Bye Supaventricular Tachycardia | Raleigh SVT

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My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. -Psalm 73:26

Today I decided to do something brave..super brave for me. I have never even had a C Section, and I guess my wisdom teeth is the closest I’ve been to surgery. So today I had heart surgery to get rid of something super annoying – SVT.  Supraventricular Tachycardia sounds really scary, and the first time I had an incident that just wouldn’t stop, I thought it was pretty scary, too. So many of my doctors assured me it wasn’t life threatening and not to worry about it. I wanted to write about it because I’m been too anxious about it to talk about it that much. I also wanted to share everything I’ve learned in case someone else ends up going through the same thing. (SVT is very common) I am not a doctor or expert so definitely check with your doctor if you have it, but I wanted to explain all the things I’ve been through, especially in the last few months.

First of all, SVT is something you are born with – you have an extra electrical connection or a spot where the blood in your heart can get stuck. (Instead of your av node, (which is your pacemaker)making your heart beat, it gets stuck in this spot) It then races around in a circle until you can get it out of that SVT rhythm. I vaguely remember it bothering me in high school when I played sports (I just thought maybe I was out of breath/not in shape because I had not been working out enough) I never thought much about it because when I would sit down, it would go away. I really don’t remember it bothering me in college, but it could have..since almost everytime I have had SVT, it went away quickly, I never thought much about it and didn’t know anything was abnormal.

When I was pregnant, it definitely bothered me. Owen’s pregnancy was way worse anyway, I barely had any time during his pregnancy where I didn’t have something out of the ordinary, but after 20 weeks, the heart racing started. They sent me to the cardiologist, and I wore a monitor for a day maybe, and they said I was fine. I really don’t think anyone mentioned I could have SVT.  During Harrison’s pregnancy, it bothered me again around 22-26 weeks. The first time it was awful. I was at a session and was completely embarrassed because it wouldn’t go away. I had never had it bother me for that long of a time, and eventually I had to quit photographing the session. I was so bummed – it was the only time I’ve had to stop a session because of me, I felt like it was my fault, and it totally bummed me out. I didn’t think anything of it because after I sat down for a few minutes, it went away. (plus after Owen’s pregnancy, I knew this was an annoying part of pregnancy for me) It only happened one more time during Harrison’s pregnancy and it was a super quick SVT and went away quickly. I saw the cardiologist again, wore a monitor again, and I really don’t remember anything being said about SVT being a possibility.

About a year after Harrison was born, I had one night with it, and then it didn’t bother me for a while. After that, I got a fitbit charge HR because it calmed my nerves. (Seriously. I would think my heart might be racing and I could look down and see it wasn’t) It never occurred to me though that anything could be wrong..just that maybe my heart would race sometimes, no big deal. Then, in March of this year, I had two SVT episodes that I thought was just a panic attack maybe. I wasn’t sure. So all of this to say, I thought maybe I was sensitive to the little bit of caffeine I drank but I had no idea I could have an arrhythmia . Then, we were at the beach at the end of March this year, and my heart started fluttering alll day. (Fluttering is something entirely different) I went to the ER there because fluttering was something new for me and it scared me because it was all day long.

1.Fluttering could also be called PVCS or ectopic beats. Every cardiologist I saw said that they were benign, maybe I was anxious and needed to relax. Anxiety is one of the things that can cause them (A nurse in the ER at the beach also told me they could be hormonal, which I had my hormones checked a week or two later and they were definitely off) PVCS, ectopic beats or fluttering is separate from SVT. These can happen to anyone and are definitely annoying.

-When you have SVT,you have an ectopic beat (or fluttering or PVC) and then it causes the blood to get stuck in that extra electrical connection spot you have and race around and around. Just because you have ectopic beats doesn’t mean it will get stuck (I was having them all day and no SVT) but you can’t have SVT if you aren’t having ectopic beats. I hope that makes sense!

When I got home from the beach, I went to my cardiologist’s office who said the ectopic beats were probably from anxiety, I needed to relax, they were benign, not to worry about them. I ended up seeing my primary doctor the next week who told me to go back to my cardiologist and get an event monitor. You wear an event monitor for a month, it’s hooked up to a cell phone and you are constantly sending your data to a monitoring center that sends it to your doctor. I wore it for a few weeks. Then one day at the end of April when I was feeling stressed I went for a run. I felt a few ectopic beats and then I felt my heart get stuck in the SVT rhythm. (Heart rate was at 190) It was annoying and wouldn’t go away, I was by myself so I got in the car and thought I would go to urgent care. During this time, my monitor service called to see how was I doing since they must have noticed my arrhythmia on the monitor. (If your heart is bothering you, just go straight to the ER) They ended up calling an ambulance and we waited a while for them to show up.(SVT is not life threatening and if they turn on the lights to the ambulance they can cause wrecks, etc) and when they got there, they just gave me fluid and put me in the truck. They didn’t turn on the siren or anything and drove me to Wake Med North. They were the nicest EMTS, and I was so thankful for them. They didn’t make me feel anxious at all. When I got to Wake Med, they just watched me for a little bit and finally my heart went back into a normal rhythm instead of the SVT rhythm where it’s stuck. (If it doesn’t go back, they can give you medicine that resets your heart and I was super scared and thankful that did not have to happen) Since they had the SVT incident on my event monitor and on an EKG at the hospital, we finally knew I had an arrhythmia. (It is something they really want to catch on an EKG to diagnose.I’m not sure the doctors will diagnose it if they don’t catch it)

What every doctor I saw explained to me was that when you have SVT, you have three options.

  1. Don’t take any medicine. Don’t worry about it – just try the valsalva maneuver or putting your face in a sink of ice water when you have an episode.
  2. Take a beta blocker everyday. This lowers your adrenaline, helps with keeping PVCS away.
  3. Have an ablation and get rid of it.

I got a referral for an electrophysiologist, Dr. Hranitsky at Wake Med. It was going to be almost a month before I could get an appointment, so my doctor’s office put me on a beta blocker to try to keep me from having another episode before then. I was on 25mg of metaprolol and the first three days were just so awful. I was walking around like a zombie…kind of felt like the misery of pregnancy. I could barely get out of bed or eat. I think I lost 6 lbs which is just crazy. I called back up there and they changed my dose to half of that, which was a lot more manageable but took a little while to get used to. It did calm my heart, but it didn’t stop the PVCS. It also lowered my heart rate so that didn’t feel great and it was getting pretty low at night so I kept the event monitor on so they monitored that. Even walking at the gym was just difficult because it kept my heart rate down. (less chance of SVT though so that was good) I was not a big fan of the beta blocker at all, but I didn’t really want to end up in the hospital with an SVT that wouldn’t go away again.

The beta blocker at a higher dose would have probably helped the PVCs go away, but at this low dose, I was still having them. Having PVCs meant I could possibly have an SVT episode if the medicine wasn’t strong enough so I was pretty anxious. So I started reading about PVCS and how to get rid of them. Some of the things that can cause PVCs – alcohol (I can’t really drink away. Half a glass of wine and I’m asleep) caffeine, increased adrenaline from exercise or stress, hormonal imbalances, high blood pressure, and I also started reading about magnesium deficiency.While I was waiting to see the electrophysiologist, I wanted to try to get rid of these PVCS so my anxiety would go down. That was a lonnnnng month of waiting. I didn’t know which arrhythmia I had, and I just wanted to find out. I also hated the beta blocker..wearing a monitor 24/7. It was all pretty annoying.

What helped my PVCS almost disappear  (I still have one or two once in a blue moon, but not all day like I was ) – 1. I started whole30. I gradually started it but kicking sugar out made a huge difference in my adrenaline, stress level, and how I felt. I highly recommend It Starts With Food. It explains in detail what happens every time you eat and how important what you eat is to your body. I didn’t realize how bad I felt everytime I ate and changing my meals made such a huge difference. 2.No more decaf. I was already a decaf drinker, but I had to cut out my one decaf drink a day. This made a big difference. (Some decaf has as much caffeine as a coke) 3.I went to see Dr. Sachar at the Beverly Medical Center and she recommended some supplements + I started epsom salt baths, too, because she explained after having babies, it’s easy to have a magnesium/mineral deficiency. I haven’t read The Magnesium Miracleyet, but it’s on my ever growing list of what I want to read. I really felt like Dr. Goode and Dr. Sachar are very knowledgeable about PVCS and an awesome resource. They did very thorough bloodwork and found some other things I could be working on with my diet/exercise.


So, my PVCS went away, which was awesome and I wasn’t stressed about having an episode. I didn’t work out from April – June because some of the time I was on my beta blocker, plus I felt like my adrenals needed to rest. I lost 12lbs from Whole30 and I’ve just kept eating that way so maybe I’m Paleo now? I just love the way it makes me feel..(you can read more about my whole30 here) I was just so glad I didn’t have to deal with the PVCs anymore, because then they made me anxious. May 19th was finally the day of my appointment with the electrophysiologist at Wake Med. He was just so awesome, and Michael and I both liked him instantly. He explained everything so clearly – the PVCS and the SVT. He also mentioned the fact that the SVT is never going away and will probably get worse as I get older. (ugh!) The ablation procedure gets rid of it, and I won’t have to worry about it ever again. Even if I have PVCs (because anyone can have them) my blood won’t get stuck and I won’t have SVT. He was also great about explaining exactly what to do if I had an SVT episode, how to get out of it. (valsava maneuver and put your face in a sink of ice water) He also mentioned again that it wasn’t life threatening. There are a lot of you tube videos out there to explain the valsava maneuver if you have SVT. He told me that I specifically had AVNRT, a type of SVT, and that sleep was so important to keeping SVT (heart racing where the blood gets stuck) away. (Since I was pregnant with Harrison, I have always gone to bed early.Now I know my body really needed it!)  He also mentioned the three options to me again 1. do nothing 2. take a beta blocker 3. get an ablation and get rid of it. That day, we decided that I would think about it, and he gave me a short release beta blocker I could take if I had a day where my heart raced and got stuck in SVT. Michael and I talked about it, and I decided to be brave and have the ablation to get rid of it. So what is the surgery/ablation? They go through a vein in your leg up to your heart to get rid of the extra electrical pathway so that the blood can’t get stuck anymore (yay!) I know I will have to lay flat an hour after surgery and then sit pretty still for 4-6 hours. (I will probably watch Gilmore Girls or read. I don’t sit still very well.) After finding out I had this, my mom mentioned it to her friends and several women either had it or knew someone who had it, which made me feel a lot better. It is supposed to be more common in women, but since then I’ve met two men who had the ablation surgery and were so glad they did. I know this is a huge long post, and I hope I did a good job explaining it. I feel like this page explains it pretty well, too. I hope this helps anyone struggling with SVT, and feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions. I have barely told anyone about it because I was way too anxious talking about it (I might would burst into tears) or even trying to explain it when I was right in the middle of everything and still had a lot of questions. I am really thankful for my neighbors who have been encouraging me and taking care of me (They couldn’t help but notice my heart monitor for a month) Since my PVCS went away, I felt a lot better, but I was just ready to get rid of this for good. I had an amazing experience at Wake Med. My nurse prayed with Michael, my awesome brother who drove up at the crack of dawn from Camden, SC, and I before the procedure. My anesthesia team was so great – I was mostly nervous I would wake up and it was the best nap and I had ever had. The whole team I had was wonderful including my recovery nurse. So thankful for such a great experience, and most of all, bye bye SVT!

*updated in 2018 to add that I have not had an SVT episode since my ablation. (yay!)

Rebecca Keller is a Raleigh Newborn and Family Photographer featured in People Magazine and on several blogs including The Bump and Let the Kids Dress Themselves. Because we chat a lot about our personal lives on the blog, we may receive commissions on affiliate links in articles.

 

 

 

whole30P I N this to pinterestOn Trying Whole30

 

So if you’ve been following me on instagram, I may have mentioned once or twice that I’ve been trying Whole30. You can read a lot about the program, but I kind of eased into it at the end of March so I didn’t follow it exactly at first because I wasn’t really informed enough. So first, I’d really recommend reading It Starts With Food. I don’t think I would be as committed to the program if I had not read the book. It is really great to read the science that happens every time you eat. It really made me rethink everything I was eating and how I was eating, too. For me this wasn’t a diet, but for my health. I have ended up losing thirteen pounds so that’s always a plus…but I do think it’s really really important to read that book first.

And then I would definitely read The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom. It has a lot of practical ways to put into practice the program and also some great recipes. There are also so many great resources on Pinterest. Whole30 is similar to Paleo, so I could say I’m Paleo now and not Whole30 because I’ve been doing it so long, but I’m just a whole30 lifer ha. (I did have one cheat food last week so I may start trying to have a cheat meal here and there soon. It’s been so long since I cheated.) I am doing it a little bit differently because my doctor didn’t want me to eliminate beans. so I am eating organic hummus and beans which is just a little bit different, so you know, always check with your doctor.

The biggest difference for me since starting Whole30 is how I feel. My stress level has gone way down, I’m not addicted to sugar, and I just feel great. It’s kind of shocking to me how sugar is in just everything. If you are feeling stressed, I would highly recommend trying it. (It’s kind of amazing how it cut down my stress level.)

There are some great things I’ve found at stores and reading other people’s ideas. If you are starting Whole30, I just found out you can sign up for e-mails everyday. I didn’t do this, but I wish I had this in the beginning when starting out. I do get their free emails that come occasionally with a lot of great advice, but the everyday ones sound like they would have been a lot of help.

Costco is great for whole30. Organic beef, wild salmon, organic fruit (which we eat a lot of fruit so perfect) the smoked pull pork (so yum and quick) Aidells chicken apple sausage (oh this is so yummy!) eggs (since we eat so many of them, better to buy at costco) and coconut water. I’m sure there’s a bunch more but I can’t think about it right now. Some people have also recommended the cans of wild salmon and the frozen wild mahi mahi.

Trader Joes – so far I’ve gotten the frozen cauliflower rice and their coconut oil spray. Also great for cut up veggies or grass fed burgers.

Whole Foods – so sometimes (a lot) I just skip the spiralizer and get the zoodles refrigerated in the produce section. (Just ask if you can’t find them) I’m also kind of addicted to their guacamole.

Harris Teeter – carries Whole30 approved bacon (no sugar. I didn’t even know almost all bacon had sugar.) Harris Teeter also has aidells chicken and apple sausage and organic produce + grass fed beef of course.

My favorite bars  to eat – SO YUMMY.

You can also find whole30 items at Aldi – see a list here.

I also just ordered this salad dressingand they also have this mayonaise so I’ll let you know what I think but you can also make your own pretty cheaply with one of the recipes from the book. There are also recipes in the book for sauces with no added sugar. (Sugar is in everything. ugh. Why does sugar need to be in pasta sauce?)

Two of my favorite meals have been Eggs with Aidells chicken and apple sausage + avacado, side of fresh fruit, and Organic Spinach Meatballs with Zoodles and tomato sauce (You have to make sure you find one with no sugar. Easy meatballs recipe here.) Some Lara bars are also approved, and I usually take almonds or Epic Beef Jerky when I’m on the go. On Owen’s field trip, I just brought the beef jerky, some carrots and a banana to tie me over. It’s really not that fun to try to eat lunch on a field trip anyway so I had a better lunch when I got home. There are also some Whole30 approved Lara bars – (see the ones compliant here)

Are the kids doing whole30? Well, mostly. I eased them into it even more because it took me a while to figure out what I was going to eat. So now since we eat together three times a day, and Owen is home, they are mostly eating all whole30 real food and loving it. (Owen’s birthday is coming up so of course, he’ll have some pizza and cake!) Also, Applegate organic hot dogs have whole30 approved ingredients and you can get them on Amazon Prime Nowwhen you forgot to get something for dinner.

If you want to try any of the whole30 approved snacks, Barefoot Provisions has made some pretty cool kits here.

My mom is also doing it with me which has been great. We didn’t really have a difficult time eating out at the beach last week, so you can definitely eat out and do the best you can.

A few other cookbooks I want to check out:

Nom Nom Paleo – Cauliflower fried rice?!?!? Yum!

Well Fed

Paleo Takeou

I just wanted to share a little bit since so many friends have had questions and have been so supportive. I have really loved whole30. If you’re eating the same way, please share some of your favorite meals!

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Rebecca Keller is a family photographer featured in People Magazine who spends her time sipping iced coffee, chasing after her two little ones, reading, running, and editing. Because I chat a lot about our personal lives on the blog, we may receive commissions on affiliate links in articles. Contact Rebecca Keller Photography for more information about Spring Mommy and Me Mini Sessions Raleigh and Raleigh family photography.

 

 

 

 

Where to Pick Strawberries in Raleigh

Article by Ericka of Little Apple Styles

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We are so “berry” excited for strawberry season!  The DIY Farmer in me has gone overboard this year with all the container gardening.   Becky mentioned I should share all my gardening adventures.  I guess she thought it was funny that I decided to get the basil-attacking-slugs drunk (Editor’s note – Beer is lethal for slugs).  When that did not work, because my slugs are hard core drinkers, I tried to convince my husband to let me raise chickens.   I may or may have not sketched my coop already.  I will share some tips, once they actually work for me!

Since our strawberry plants did not survive the sudden freeze – I scouted the internet and Facebook pages for some info on the best strawberry picking farms.  My main criteria, not further than 1 hour from my house.  I did not realize all these other cities were less than 1 hour from Morrisville.  I also did not realize I had so many around the corner from me.  Most of them offer both pick-your-own (PYO) and pre-picked (PP).

I noticed most farms are using social media to keep their customers informed in “real time.”   Check their page before going – just in case there are any changes in their schedule.  Also, if you are planning on picking your own, it is important to check if they are not picked out for the day.  Oh, and not all of them accept credit cards or have baskets available.  I tried to as include as much information as possible in the list below …and I am planning on touring them all so I can find my most favorite strawberry picking farm.

Which one is your favorite?  Did I miss any?  I would love to hear from all my strawberry-loving-readers!outdoor newborn photograpy raleigh_1157P I N this to pinterest

 

Buckwheat Farm

2700 Holland Rd, Apex, NC 27502

This farm is currently open for pick-your-own strawberries.  The cost is $2 per pound.  You need to bring your own picking containers.

 

DJ’s Berry Patch

1223 Salem Church Road, Apex, NC, 27523

We love this farm! They have been selling pre-picked Sweet Charlie strawberries since last week for $14 per bucket.  DELICIOUS!  I was afraid to buy the large bucket since I thought it would be too much for my family.  My strawberry monsters proved me wrong.  They were all gone within 36 hours.  This farm will be ready for pick-your-own today (4/18)

Gross Farms

1606 Pickett Road Sanford, NC 27332

This farm opened this past Thursday, April 14th and they have pick-your-own and pre-picked strawberries available.  Their prices for this season are as follows: Flat $11.00, Quart $4.00 and PYO $1.80/lb.

 

Hunts Strawberry Farm

4505 Watkins Road, Raleigh, NC, 27616

This farm is open for pick-your-own strawberries.  The gallon bucket of pre-picked strawberries is $13.00.  PYO gallon’s cost is $9.  This farm is cash or check only.

 

Jean’s Berry Patch 

38 Lewter Shop Road, Apex, NC

While their official season begins today, Monday 18th, they were open over the weekend.  You can stop by since 7:30am for pick-your-own strawberries. The cost for PYO is 1.80 per pound and the cost of pre-pricked strawberries is $4.50 per quart.  Cash/check only and you need to bring your own container to this farm.

 

Logan Farms 

110 Logan Farm Lane, Sanford, NC, 27330

Strawberry Picking started Friday, April 15th. This farm is one of the farthest from us, but excited to stop by so I can visit their greenhouse.  I contacted the get pricing information.  I will update this post as soon as I hear from them.

 

Lyon Farms 

1544 Munns Road, Creedmoor, NC, 27522

This farm is already open for season.   The cost is $1.5/lb for pick-your-own strawberries and $10 for the pre-picked bucket.  This farm has other vegetables available for sale on-site.  Payment is cash/checks only.

 

Page Farms 

6100 Mt. Herman Rd, Raleigh, NC, 27617

While the strawberry season has already started in this farm – check their Facebook page before you decide to stop by.  They are very good at announcing if there are picked out for the day in social media.  The cost of their berries is $1.85/lb for pick-your-own and $14 for a pre-picked bucket.

 

Phillips Farm of Cary, NC 

6701 Good Hope Church Rd, Cary, NC, 27519

Their strawberry picking season starts today, Monday April 18th.  The cost for pick-your-own is $2 per pound and the cost of pre-pricked strawberries is $4.25 per pound.  Cash/check only and you need to bring your own container to this farm.  If you forget it, you can buy a picking basket there for $1.25 each.

 

Pope’s Strawberry Farm

1305 Fayetteville Street, Knightdale, North Carolina, 27545

Schedule to open April 20th – check their Facebook page for further updates.

 

Porter Farms and Nursery 

3525 NC Highway 42, Willow Spring, NC, 27592

Strawberry picking fields are currently open.  Their pre-picked strawberries are also available at 7615 Ten-Ten Road.  The cost of a Bucket of strawberries is $10.

 

Smith’s Nursery and Produce Farm 

443 Sanders Road, Benson, NC, 27504

The farm has been open for pick -your-own strawberries since March 31st.  The cost is $2.50/lb for PYO.  Pre-picked strawberries buckets are $13.50

 

Vollmer Farm 

677 NC 98 Hwy E, Bunn, NC 27508

This farm is very popular.  They are one of the few certified organic berry producers in the area.  They are open for you pick-your-own strawberries and the cost is $3.50 per pound. Pre-picked strawberries are also available at the farm and at Western Wake Farmers Market in Cary by the UNC Wellness Center.

 

Waller Family Farm 

5030 Kerley Road, Durham, NC, 27705

Schedule to open the end of April – check their Facebook page for further updates.outdoor newborn photograpy raleigh_1158P I N this to pinterestoutdoor newborn photograpy raleigh_1156P I N this to pinterest

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Picking strawberries 2014 | Rebecca Keller Photography 

Ericka Jimmerson is a busy mom of two who runs Little Apple Styles, photography + event styling. Contact her at littleapplestyles@gmail.com if you need help making your event picture perfect!

Rebecca Keller is a family photographer featured in People Magazine and on The Bump. Contact Rebecca Keller Photography for more information about newborn and maternity photography in Raleigh, NC.

What I Learned in March

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1.We visited Ripley’s Aquarium during Spring Break, and there are divers there that get in the water with the sharks. They had a stick with them..not sure how much that would help them in a shark attack. We watched them swim around with the sharks for several minutes, and I just couldn’t watch it anymore.

2.Renting a bike with the seat for Harrison at the beach was definitely a highlight of March. Oh my, he just giggled and giggled, “I ride a bike with Mommy!” Last summer, I kept trying to rent one and it was too late. North Carolina spring break at the cold beach is not a popular Spring Break destination so bikes were actually available!

3.I have love, love, loved the Kindle Paperwhite. I have been reading so much more because with the recommendations + also just the fact that I don’t have to wait two days for a book (I know right, two.whole.days) or go to a bookstore. (Between working and taking care of my kiddos, I just don’t get out much) This month has been one of my busiest I’ve had…and with being so busy, I have to take time to de stress and not think about working every second of the day. Reading makes me relax + not having to wait for the books has been a plus. I need stress relief so that I am refreshed and ready to work again, and so that I can truly give my best to every session. I got the 119.00 version with the special offers which are basically ads on the screen when it’s locked – not a big deal.

4.I have never stopped craving greens since I was pregnant with Harrison. I know, weird, right? When I was pregnant with Harrison, I started wanting to eat green everything and also balsamic vinaigrette. It died down a little bit, but now I’m back to wanting collard greens, spinach, broccoli, etc all the time -ha!

5. I love fresh 48 sessions. It can be difficult to plan these because you just never know when a baby is going to be born, right? I stopped photographing births because that was even more difficult + getting childcare last minute is tough, especially when a baby can be born so quickly. I’ve loved the few fresh 48 sessions I’ve gotten to do in the past few months – just so sweet. See this one from March.

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6.An Easter Egg hunt at the farm was just perfect. Due to an ear infection, we missed another planned egg hunt, so I was so glad we were able to squeeze this one in after a newborn session I had that day. Millstone Creek Orchards is one of our favorite places, and this was the first year for an egg hunt. It was so much fun + the peach trees were just gorgeous.

7.Mini sessions do not always have to be planned months in advance. I’m such a planner when it comes to the business…type A, I like to have things planned out WAY in advance. Ericka and I reallllly wanted to do baby lamb minis this year. I mean, we researched, searched, looked and looked, and had all but given up. We were so heartbroken. At the last minute, this sweet baby lamb was born, and we were able to throw it together quickly..and oh my, love these!

Books I read this month….

Ok, it doesn’t make sense that I read a lot of books this month since I was working just so much. But I needed the stress relief when I did have a few minutes. Also, I read very fast…I was kind of that kid that got done with all their work super early in school so I could read.

1.Me Before You So I knew a movie was coming out about this book so I wanted to read it. I don’t want to spoil it for you but I’m not 100% happy with the way the story goes, but, that being said, I did love the book. It definitely kept my attention, and I couldn’t wait to read more of it.

2.When I’m Gone This book was very interesting – a lot of heartache as the Mother had cancer, but the story in the book had so many twists and turns right to the very end. I definitely want to read more by this author.

3.The Sweetness of Forgetting Eeek..this one was so good. It now has me wanting to read more fiction about WWII. (which I also just read The Nightingale which was not as happy as this book, but also so good and about WWII) I really loved the story in this book as it has so much history but also such a good story.The ending is also just so good. It did make me very hungry and want to bake a lot of things.

4.The Lake House So I tried Audible this month, and this was the book I downloaded since it was on my list of books I wanted to read. This book was just too long for audible, ha, and I was never going to finish it. I couldn’t pay attention so I ended up downloading it to read. (Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks) I read mixed reviews about this book, but I realllly enjoyed the story. It flips back and forth between the 1930s and the 2000s, and it was such a good mystery. It has the happiest ending, which I just love, too. (I can’t help it. I LOVE happy endings!) It’s a long read, but definitely a book I really enjoyed.

Some books on my list for April are: The Wedding Dress, Brooklyn, and The Paris Wife. What are you reading this month? I lovvve recommendations

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Rebecca Keller is a family photographer featured in People Magazine who spends her time sipping iced coffee, chasing after her two little ones, reading, running, and editing. Because we chat a lot about our personal lives on the blog, we may receive commissions on affiliate links in articles. Contact Rebecca Keller Photography for more information about Family Photography Raleigh Cary  and Raleigh family photography.

You know we love to celebrate holidays around here, and also, um, DOUGHNUTS! Like love, love, love them. I have a hard time not making a doughnut run every Taco Tuesday after dinner since we usually are already out and about on Tuesdays. Yeah, we LOVE doughnuts. These two were just so cute in their St. Patrick’s Day shirts, yes, I had to photograph them enjoying their little treat. (And yes, they made a huge mess.) Owen was super excited to wear his shirt to school today, too, and Harrison has been walking around the house repeating, “Donut pinch me. Donut pinch me.” So much green + cuteness over here. Harrison and I will be baking some green cupcakes to surprise Owen with when he comes home from school. Oh, I LOVE HOLIDAYS. Ok, enough with the rambling! Don’t forget to wear green today so you donut get pinched.

Shirts by Swanky Shank like my favorite etsy shop shirt designer ever. 

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Rebecca Keller is a Raleigh Child Photographer featured in People Magazine and The Bump. Contact Rebecca Keller Photography for more information about family photography + travel sessions.