Esteban Javier Loobo: A Birth Story

IMG_6247 IMG_6246 IMG_6249 IMG_6245 IMG_6241 IMG_6242 IMG_6258 IMG_6237
Our water broke when we moved in.


Nine months after we got kicked out of our old house, upon moving into our new house BAM, the water heater bit the dust a mere ten minutes after we dragged our first box over the threshold.

Hal: "HAKSDHAKJFHKAJHDSKJAHDKJSA! Our hot water heater just died!" (Yelling, screaming, expletive expletive expletive."

My mom, hands in the air: "IT'S A SIGN! YOUR WATER BROKE, GET IT!??! THIS IS THE BIRTH!"

(You think I'm crazy with the signs? My mother is even crazier. I think she even cried tears of joy when our plumber carried the old, exploded water heater out of the basement because THERE GOES THE AFTERBIRTH OH GOD!")

But she was pretty right on and in terms of broken water heaters, the timing could not have been better. Plus, it was humbling in a way. A sort of "Welcome to homeownership! Let me pop your cherry with your first unexpected expense!"
IMG_6215 IMG_6211 IMG_6213
Not that there haven't been PLENTY of unexpected expenses. The house was an "as is" purchase, so when we moved in, we inherited all of the issues and had to pay out of pocket for things like termite fumigation.

And less than adequate paint jobs.
But! And perhaps it's because we're hunkering down in Honeymoonphaseville, these unexpected expenses almost excite me? In a way? Sure, we don't have as much money in our savings account as we did last month and likely ever will, but this is our BABY. And I want it to be happy and healthy and filled with love at all times. So if replacing the water heater can do that? Beautiful.

It's all beautiful.


Blissed-Out Blissybliss...

As for Esteban's full name, I thought it only fair, since the kids have Hal's last name (archaic, I know. And a little annoying, to be honest. But that's for another post and I don't feel like getting into the whole "who takes what" last name debate, because, it's complicated and I have regrets. ANYWAY!) that our house should have mine, so I don't have to be the lone Woolf.

Of course, because Esteban's first language is Espanol, I thought Lobo, more apropos. Lo(o)bo, with the extra O.

Javier is just a sexy name so I stuck it in there because DAMN, Este. You sexste.

Voila! Esteban Javier Loobo (pronounced Lobo)!

I'm still not entirely here here, so forgive my posting these next few days. The first five episodes of ChildStyle go live this Thursday on which is very exciting and also highly nerve-wracking aka my stomach is a little on the loopy side c/o anticipationitis. In the meantime, I got started on Archer and Fable's room makeover this morning, researching bunk beds and narrowing down curtain swatches so the kids have color coordinated options to choose from. (Archer picked his "city transportation" print already. Fable's leaning toward something "pink rainbow doll"esque.)

In the meantime, I nailed a few things to their walls temporarily. 
IMG_6296 IMG_6231 IMG_6209 IMG_6260
One of these days I'll come back down to earth and stop bombaring everyone on Instagram (and here!) with pictures of light fixtures and partially-decorated rooms, but for now, I'm just going to ride the wave, you know? I'm going to ride the crimson wave in my giant postpartum pad and hospital-grade mesh panties.

Which is totally gross but 100% on par with how I'm feeling right now, a mere nine days after pushing a 2100 square foot house out of my soul's vagina.
project #2: restoring the original kitchen floors.
IMG_6289 IMG_6304 IMG_6222 IMG_6094 IMG_6266 IMG_6172 IMG_6175 IMG_6174 IMG_6219 IMG_6170 IMG_6311 IMG_6251 IMG_6180 IMG_6187 IMG_6250 IMG_6188
It's a boy, you guys. And he's bald and handsome, with a serious milk fetish and eyes like windows to the soul.
IMG_6273 IMG_6283
Las ventanas del alma.  



Unknown | 2:36 PM

He's BEAUTIFUL! Congratulations!

Rebecca @ Sink or Swim | 2:38 PM

Esteban es muy guapo!
Seriously your house is beautiful, so happy for you guys!

Lindsey | 2:45 PM

Congratulations! He is a beauty and I love his name. xo

Loran | 2:49 PM

How is this possible? Those girls are standing!

Anonymous | 2:51 PM

I am in love with that bathroom and those hardwood floors in the living room!

Sarie | 2:53 PM

So be careful of the bunkbeds, I had them in my sons' room and then walked in one day and my 19 month old had climbed the ladder and was sitting on the top bunk. The bunk beds were unbunked real fast. I had been out of the room only long enough to go pee.


@Sarie. UGH. Really? UGH.

Sophie Lesher | 2:54 PM

I had a dream about you and your chillens last night. You had a boy! His name was Felix, not Esteban, but he's handsome and beautiful and amazing all the same :3

So happy for y'all!!! Keep us posted (pehehe) on the room/house updates!

Love love love,


Amber | 2:57 PM

YES! This entire post = WIN!! He's gorgeous.

Anonymous | 2:58 PM

All of your children are incredible and beautiful, Esteban included. I've been drooling over these pictures! As a side note: I would be all ears (eyes?) for the last name debate post. My son has my husband's name and I never changed mine, so this complicated business is near and dear to my heart.

Unknown | 3:02 PM

This may be my favorite post yet. All hail the postpartum mesh panty!

shelly | 3:07 PM

Congratulations-he is totally beautiful! I can't get over how here, and on Instagram, the babies are vertical in almost every. single. photo. I am not ready for that!

Hailey | 3:09 PM

beautiful! please share your last name post when you have time. no rush. i know you are super duper busy. also, did you have the leather wingback in the old house? if so, i don't know how i missed it in pictures. beautiful! everything is beautiful!

findingmagnolia | 3:16 PM

Esteban is gorgeous, a beautiful baby to be sure. Are you registered somewhere? Home Depot? Lowe's? Local hardware store?

Anonymous | 3:30 PM

The Allen Milk Receiver is possibly the COOLEST thing I've ever seen. Evah-evah. I'd have bought your house for that alone!!! My mother still gets milk delivered, I'll have to show her that...
Wishing you all the very best of times in your new home:-)

LucyCooper | 3:32 PM

I don't know what makes me happier- anticipation of watching "Child Style,"or Bo's butt and legs.

Käthe | 3:35 PM

That milk door! I die.

Clandestine Road | 3:45 PM

He's beautiful! I love that house so much, especially the quirks. I can't wait to see what you and Hal do with him. Congratulations!

wonderchris | 3:48 PM

The dairy door!!!! I love Esteban!

He's beautiful.

wonderchris | 3:48 PM

The dairy door!!!! I love Esteban!

He's beautiful.

Catherine | 3:52 PM

Sooo wonderful. What a gorgeous house for your sweet family. Love the water breaking analogy. :)

AUSAcara | 4:00 PM

My favorite things:
-The milk receiver!!!
-The name!
-Signs and water breaking and vaginas with souls.
-R&B's outfits. All of them.
-All of the windows! So many windows!
-How there are NO boxes in any of your photos. Really? Who are you - a magical moving goddess?

Congrats! Can't wait to see your family grow in your new home.

Noelle Spooner | 4:04 PM

I love him! Gorgeous!

Red Stethoscope | 4:16 PM

Gorgeous! Congratulations!

Paige | 4:39 PM

Congratulations on your house baby! He's a real looker. As a renter who hopes to own one day I find this all very encouraging.

Also, "it's complicated. I have regrets" is EXACTLY how I feel about the last-name thing. I can't even talk about it because I get so angry and frustrated and just worked-up. Blerg.

Elizabeth | 4:43 PM

Pushing a house out of your soul's vagina. Oh, that made me laugh out loud. Thank you for that. I needed to laugh.

Enjoy your babyhousemoon!!

Mama Smith | 4:48 PM

I can not believe how gorgeous this house is. The details are insane- I'm on the east coast so we just don't have houses like this. I have been dreaming of a house for decades but it's not easy... your's now has me drooling with envy and reconsidering why I'm in Boston.

I am also eagerly awaiting your thoughts on names. I did take my husbands last name (and my very feminist family was not happy), it felt right to me. But then I also decided to give my son my husband's first name as his middle and I really regret not giving him my maiden name somewhere in there. My husband is really hurt when I bring it up (and he's never hurt), so I think it's a done deal. I do feel sad about it though.

Congrats, Lilly

Kim | 4:50 PM

Awww.. our 1950s kitchen had a milk door. The outside part had been taken off and covered, but the inside door was still there ( and we kept our phone there) until we renovated and have a kitchen that can fit more that two people at a time and is the heart of our house now.

Erin Riley | 4:56 PM

Congratulations! And I look forward to your thoughts on the last name business. Our daughter has my husband's last name, but she has my last name as a second middle name. I figure she can go by both, if she wants, when she gets older.

Zoë | 5:00 PM

Wait a minute... how did I not know that you guys had dogs?? BAD READER, BAD!

What a seriously gorgeous home for your adorable Family! Amazing!

waiting for kittenheart

Esme | 5:38 PM

Oh, the name thing. My last name is super rare and I'm basically the last of the line and it's just a really important part of my identity. My husband's last name is exceedingly common. We've made the decision for this first kid (and we only plan having one at this point) that we'll use whichever last name goes best with the chosen first name, which I think is fair. Still, I know I'll be pretty sad if it ends up being his last name since it's so much more important to me than to him. (I think I could probably sway him on the issue so we use my last name regardless, but that seems unfair to me.) There is absolutely no easy answer to me.

On topic: your house is absolutely beautiful. Congratulations! We bought a gorgeous, perfect house with a million things to fix last year and it still seems unreal even as we slowly paint and fix and tweak and make it ours.

Kailee | 5:45 PM

I'm reading this while wearing mesh panties right now! Only for me it has been 7 days since giving birth to an almost 10 pound baby boy.

I am DYING over that stove! That milk door! The beautiful windows! Well done, Becs! He's a beauty!

Virginia-Ann | 6:45 PM

Your soul gave birth to one beautiful home. I know your going to have many wonderful, yet aggravating (trust me I was born and grew up in one)moments in a home that will slowly reveal its secrets and its past. Upon moving out of the Dutch Colonial home they purchased in the mid 1950's, in 1986 my father told me that he had so many plans for the house and even after all the years so many never came to pass. He said that he felt he did right by the house and by us, but it somehow felt right passing the home onto another young family with many dreams yet to be known!

~Kristina | 8:38 PM

Swoon!! Esteban, you're sensational.

Courtney | 8:48 PM

Ahh congrats! It's beautiful! We just bought our first house too and have the same anticipation and plans and excitement. I'm wondering whether you're a fan of Rehab Addict on DIY since you're wanting to "restore" everything instead of remodel. I am obsessed with that show. I think you two should collaborate and Nicole can come out to LA from Minneapolis (where I am too). And film it all!

Majah | 9:11 PM

De-lurking (I've lurked for forever, just so you'll know) to say that the thing that amazes me the most about Esteban is how every single thing is just so 'you and yours'. He's stunning...absolutely amazing. And you just moved in! I can't wait to see him grow and change. Hugs to you all -

Anonymous | 9:55 PM

Such lovely pictures! those two on the bench..and the ones of "la ventana del alma".. adorable

verdemama | 9:59 PM

It really is a gorgeous house! And I so feel your pain re: the water heater's death. Three months after we bought our house, we noticed the gas heater was leaking -- badly. 10k later, we had a fancy new heating and cooling system installed. The last thing we wanted was to spend more money so quickly after signing our lives away, but the thought of our house spontaneously burning down/exploding was très motivating. Oh, the joys of homeownership!

Unknown | 11:05 PM

Congratulations, mama! What an incredible Esteban you've got there. It really seems like the perfect space for you and your brood.

We've been in our house for 2.5 years and we've still got boxes in our garage. Can you come over and help? You're amazing!

Tove | 11:52 PM

Gorgeous! Love the name, love the water breaking, looooove the milk receiver!

Katie | 4:28 AM

A seriously beautiful house, congratulations!!

France in France | 5:08 AM

Regarding the bunk beds, you could totally put a security in the form of a plexi sheet or something like that ('scuse the technical language here:-) on the bottom rungs. Archer can probably still climb by putting his foot up on a higher rung, but no babes will reach that high.
Just a thought, of course.

Arnebya | 5:23 AM

Giggling at Sarie's comment because YES, Bo or Revi OR BOTH will be atop the bunk just a'smilin' like look what we did. Take them down and all hell will break loose.

Our bunk beds definitely saved space but now that the girls are 11and 8, they want separate beds. I understand the need for personal space BUT we still have the same house, same amount of space and two beds will simply make their room inhabitable (to me). They seem to have believed my constant saying that a bedroom is for sleeping, so to them, they just need room for the beds. Hm. Not sure yet.

Anyway, yes, the house is lovely; I find myself just staring at the photos and yes, yes, I do get the oddness of looking forward to unexpected expenses even as they drain the accounts because look, ma! I'm an adult!

MKP | 6:47 AM

That milk receiver door may be the most amazing thing EVER. I LOVE IT SOOO MUCH. I would be ordering fake milk every single day.

Julia | 7:17 AM

I've been drooling over your stove since I first saw is posted somewhere.

Nasrene | 7:21 AM

Absolutely gorgeous home!!! What a treat to be able to grow up there (for both the kids and adults). Congrats on your new baby boy!!!

Rebekah Wallace | 8:46 AM

This is beautiful Rebecca and I was laughing and almost crying reading your birth story. Happy honeyhousing.

Entwined Essentials | 9:33 AM

A note on the bunk beds too. I saw a commenter warn you about the ladder and the babies. I have two boys and a 15 month girl. The bunk bed we decided on has a detachable ladder so we just have our oldest take it off and put it on top of the bed.

Loving your new digs and thanks so much for sharing all these pictures.

Megatron | 10:29 AM

OMG "I'm going to ride the crimson wave in my giant postpartum pad and hospital-grade mesh panties." I feel like I'm part of the mother club relating to this statement so well. Probably would have scared me a year ago!

PS. I loooove the milk door!

Lizzie | 10:42 AM

congrats! we moved into a 1930 spanish in glendale four months ago. I have recs for floor refinishers and painters. One thing you gotta watch out for is lead paint whenever you rip something out or renovate. The old homes are worth it though! We've got the same tub (and crazy purple/black tile).

Anonymous | 12:45 PM

What a beautiful house! I wish we had that gorgeous architecture out here in the midwest. It makes our homes look so boring. I'm curious if you had to do any sort of lead testing/remediation with the home being so old. We've been house hunting and I've been leary of older homes because of that issue with small children especially.

Kimberly Smith | 2:09 PM

OMG! I want a house with a Dairy Door!

Maria | 2:28 PM

Esteban is muy muy gorgeous! And those huge windows...oh my.

And yes, can we please have a last name discussion? I'm dying to hear what everyone has to say. My bf and I struggle on that question, i think my kids either keep my name or the girl gets my name and if it's a boy it's his. Only planning on having one, but what if it's twins...and how would the siblings be with different names...blah blah blah.

Anonymous | 4:14 PM

Sweet bong.

Lucia | 5:44 PM

The house is HERMOSA (house in spanish, "casa," is feminine, I hope Esteban doesn't get offended). I love old houses, they have so much more soul. Not to mention, sooo much more character. I hope I find something like this someday!

I'm interested in hearing your thoughts on the last name debate. I'm not yet married, nor do I have kids, but I've already decided that I could never change my last name. It's part of who I am, I wouldn't be me without it. Plus, my boyfriend has a totally common last name that would sound horrible with my first and second... I'm Argentine and have very Spanish/ Italian names. Anyway, I've thought of what I'll do when I have kids, how that will work if I have a different name, etc etc etc.

Anonymous | 4:44 AM

I love the stove! I almost bought a house because of the baby blue refrigerator from the 50s but it didn't convey:(

As for the problem with the bunk beds/ladder. Our bunk bed's ladder is light enough that my 6 1/2 year old can take it down and put it back up when he needs it. I just do that to keep the toddler off the top bunk. store it next to or under the bed. By the time the babies are old enough to do that themselves you won't be worried anymore.

Enjoy the house and all the decorating!!

Anonymous | 8:25 AM

My soul had an orgasm over that stove.

bbgHappY1 | 10:00 AM

Love your new place... I still have one of those doors for the milk drop off.. our mail man has been using it as our mail box for years.. ;-).

Could you please tell me what type of doggies you have? I think that they are so adorable. (I guess there are no stupid questions).


@bbg Zadie is a Boston Terrier and Cooper is a Boxer. I've had them since I was twenty years old. They're amazing dogs, both of them. :)

Anonymous | 12:32 PM

I cannot tell you how much I love the birth analogy. It really is so true! We too just purchased an old home with all sorts of flaws and recent (however lengthy) neglect. Within the first three months we have had to drain a great deal of our savings in order to replace the sewer line. No matter how painful it has been, we still love this house and feel compelled to take care of it, make sure it's loved, so that we can love living there for a very long time.

Rachael | 8:45 PM

I love this. I love your family, and your writing. Honestly you make your life so full of beauty it's inspiring to me.

anie | 11:50 AM

He's beautiful! Can I sleep on that bathroom floor? SO gorgeous~enjoy!!!

Anonymous | 4:50 AM

Is that a bullet hole in the milk bottle caddy?