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I am all about family history work, so when we found out we were expecting our first child, I naturally turned to the family tree. We gathered up supplies to make a magnetic family tree (with pictures of each of our family members) and gave them to our families for St. Patrick's day. What? You don't give presents to your family on St. Patty's day? It's okay — we usually don't either.

I was 11 weeks along when we told our families (if you'd like to see what we did, you can check it out here), and was even further along when our friends found out. Miscarriages are most common in the first trimester which is one of the reasons people tend to wait a few weeks before sharing the wonderful news.

Can't decide how to announce your pregnancy to your family and friends? Some like to go all out, others prefer a low-key approach. Whatever your style, here are some ideas for you.

Take family pictures with props. If you want to send out cards to family and friends or post it online, grab a chalkboard and draw up your good news. (If you are artistically inclined, you'll be able to get especially creative with this.) You may want to add the due date or a picture from your ultrasound. Whatever you do, make sure that it fits with your personality. Here are two different approaches to the chalkboard prop announcement.

Send out a handmade card. I think anything miniature is adorable, and ever since I was a little girl I have loved fingerprint art. If you have a green ink pad and paper, you are set. Just ink up the fingertips of you and your spouse (and children, if you have them) and get ready to make an adorable and priceless heirloom. This card would be especially fitting for those who already have children. Don't forget to make one for yourself to keep as well!

If your baby has older siblings, let them do the announcing. If going all out isn't quite you, a simple and sweet photograph can speak volumes. Just have your child (or children) hold up a picture of baby from the ultrasound. This photograph, taken by Nicole of Us-ology captures so much and is absolutely gorgeous.

Make a T-shirt and have your child wear it to your next family function. With the words "Only child, expiring (insert due date here)" you are guaranteed to get some gasps, laughs or cries. See how long it takes for people to catch on to your secret.

Talk to your spouse and let him get in on the fun with you. This is one of the biggest announcements the two of you will ever make, so plan together. Be creative and get excited for what the rest of your lives have in store!



Jessie McKinley is a city girl living in a small town. A graduate of Brigham Young University (in Home and Family Living), she now puts her knowledge to use daily as she teaches and raises her two young children, whom she adores.
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