When I was pregant back in the early aughts, gender reveal came via a brief phone call on my cell from the OB while I was pushing a cart full of baby swag down the aisle at Target.
"It's a BOY? Awesome! K thanks bye!"
I may or may not have then hugged the stranger standing in line next to me.
Now, however, gender reveals have become a THING. In the last few tears, we've seen everything from gender reveal paint fights and pinata smashings to full-on ultrasound parties and helium balloon releases. But we think you'll agree that Monique Tello and Steven Statter scored a home run, so to speak, with this amazing baseball-themed reveal, perfectly captured by California photographer David Swayze. Take a look:
Pretty amazing, amiright?
Are you as curious about how they got the baseball to explode into that awesome pink cloud as we were?
Here's how the whole thing went down.
Monique and Steven are huge baseball fans—fave team: LA Dodgers—so they figured centering their big reveal around America's favorite pasttime would be a huge, well, hit. "I wanted Steven to feel more included since pregnancy is typically more focused on the women," Monique said. "I wanted him to have a part and couldn't have thought of a more perfect way."
The couple rented out the baseball park, invited friends and family to cheer them on, then turned to Swayze (an old friend of Monique's from high school) to capture the special moment. "I was immediately excited and honored to be a part of it," he said, adding that he has shot other gender reveals but never one quite this creative. "It's one of the best gender reveals I've seen."
The preparation wasn't easy, however. For starters, the lynch pin of the entire reveal—the baseball—would have to somehow be built from scratch. Monique came up with the idea to take a clear plastic ornament (which she purchased at Michael's), then fill it with either pink or blue powdered chalk and paint it to look like a baseball. But since neither Monique or Steve knew the sex of the baby at the time, all the Pinterest-worthy crafting duties fell to Monique's sister Marisa, the only person who was actually in the loop.
The outlook wasn't brilliant that day when Steven stepped up to bat. "We only had one ball and it was EXTREMELY fragile," said Swayze. "We only had one shot to get this right."
"I told Steven 'You better hit this, I dont care if you have to reach!"" added Monique.
And so with roughly 50 "fans" present—friends and family who thought it was a boy (Team Blue) in one dugout and Team Pink in the other—Steven took a swing at Monique's pitch. "I remember saying a quick little prayer to myself before she threw the ball, " Swayze said. "Not for me to get the perfect shot, but for Steven to make contact with the ball giving them both the outcome that they had envisioned in their minds. "
Luckily, the batter—who plays in an Orange County league every Sunday—brought his A-game and despite the pressure, managed to blast the makeshift ball into an incredible puff of pink. Both dugouts went crazy when they saw the pop of color. "The feeling of seeing the pink chalk come out...the suspense and surprise of the entire experience was amazing," said Monique, who added that the little slugger—who they plan to name Kennedy Marie— is due in early May.
Probably not a coincidence that her arrival will coincide with the start of baseball season!