"We were past the 12-week mark, and I wanted to send out a card after the holidays, so people would get something unexpected in the mail," says Amanda Sullivan. So she had photographer Jennie Pyfferoen take a few snaps of her and her husband holding a paper heart banner that said "Baby #2," as well as some photos of their daughter, who was set to become a big sister. "Jennie made the heart banner, and the photo just happened. I like to make my husband kiss me in pictures, and he was a good sport about it." Their daughter, Harper Faith, was born the following July.
It's kind of like Valentine's Day MadLibs! Natalie Baeten's husband came up with the idea of using conversation hearts to create a pregnancy announcement Valentine, which she snapped a photo of, and posted on Facebook, letting "the whole world" know they were expecting their second child. "I bought bags of conversation hearts, dumped them all over my kitchen table, found hearts with cute—and legible—wording and concocted a message." Upon seeing the Valentine, family and friends posted well wishes on Natalie's wall, and Brooks Christopher made his debut in August as expected.
Alex and James had this picture taken when Alex was just 10 weeks pregnant. The couple wanted to let their friends and family know that they were expecting before moving to Hawaii, where James, a US Marine Corps helicopter pilot, became stationed. A close friend made the heart onesie for them, making the perfect Valentine's-themed photo-op.
Modern Pilgrim blogger Jennifer Pilgrim has a thing for holidays, so she couldn't resist incorporating a Valentine's Day theme into her February pregnancy reveal. "I'm a DIY blogger, so of course, I had to throw a little DIY into my announcement," she says. She made oversize conversation hearts for her and her husband to hold in photos and posted them on social media.
Karen from Old Greenwich had "baby number one" deliver a very important Valentine to family and friends. She says, "We decided to announce that we were expecting our second child on Valentine's Day, so this seemed appropriate."
Ashley Baker simply used conversation hearts, a marker and her rug to create a photo that announced her news to family and friends using simple math. "I was 10 weeks along. I'd been hoping to wait a little longer but I suffered from Hyperemesis Gravidarum [severe morning sickness] and couldn't hide my pregnancy any longer," she says. "Our daughter, Charlotte Grace, joined us in August 2012. Definitely a sweet addition to our family!"
To reveal her pregnancy to her family, Stephanie Wolfe invited them to her home for a Valentine's Day meal of chicken alfredo. Then she passed out gifts: photos of her and her husband, Mathew, posing with conversation heart cookies, a sonogram photo and a chalkboard that said, "We can't wait to meet our little Valentine!" They were ecstatic. "My mom was completely shocked and my mother-in-law was screaming," says Stephanie.
Who knew there were so many ways to use conversation hearts?! Graphic designer and photographer Valerie Keyser had recently had her 12-week ultrasound when she decided to do a Valentine-themed pregnancy announcement. She and a friend used the sonogram photo to create a paper heart banner and did a photo shoot in the snow. The rest she created in Photoshop, and then posted it on Facebook. "Everyone seemed extremely happy for us," says Valerie. "It got a ton of likes and comments congratulating us—a lot of 'I knew it' comments, too!" Baby Oliver arrived in August.
"I had so much fun shopping for and making all of these fun and cute props for our photos," says Michelle Hunt, who had a friend take a variety of shots in "babies' first photo shoot" at the Olympic Sculpture Park in Seattle. Michelle used this pic of her holding two sparkly heart pops in front of her belly in a Valentine's Day card she sent out. In case friends and family didn't get the hint, she digitally added the equation to explain how it was adding up. Her twins Chloe and Richie were born in July 2014.
"Valentine's Day is hands-down my favorite holiday not only because it is an entire day devoted to love, but it happens to be my birthday too!" says blogger Misha Lower of Emerald City Diaries. "We waited to share our news with most people until I was 12 weeks along—with Valentine's Day hitting around my 15 week mark, I knew it would be a great theme to share our new adventure of love with our friends and family!" Her hubby Aaron, puppy Sadie, and a giant red balloon with streamers helped her spell out the announcement. Baby Eloise was born in August 2014.
Amanda Hughes of Charlotte, North Carolina, set up a creative poem in a framed dry erase board next to her 17-month-old son Aiden to make her huge announcement on Valentine's Day. "Aiden was an IVF baby and we had a less than 2 percent chance of getting pregnant on our own," says Amanda, who submitted this photo to Parents' America's Best Pregnancy Announcement contest. "Needless to say we were in shock and surprised to be pregnant. Cupid sure was busy!"
Mallory Stroud of Farmington, New York, used black poster board, fake roses, a mirror, balloons, some chalk and the adorable big sister to create this Valentine's Day pregnancy announcement, which she submitted to Parents' America's Best Pregnancy Announcement contest. "It was a super easy and inexpensive way to announce," she says, "and such a fun way to share our big news for Valentine's Day!"
In this fun depiction of a busy life with a sweet husband, a precocious toddler, a giant dog, and a fluffy cat, you might not first catch that mom Miranda Gonder, of Fort Dodge, Iowa, is putting a bun in the oven. If anyone missed the subtle surprise message, the Valentine's Day card's sign-off explained Baby "G" was due in August 2015. The photo, which Miranda submitted to Parents' America's Best Pregnancy Announcement contest, is also sprinkled with great red accents—you gotta love the rose in Flash's mouth!