When Chelsie Morales, 28, learned she was pregnant, the Nebraska woman resisted every urge to immediately tell her husband, Will, 31, and instead decided to orchestrate what would become the surprise of his life.
To carry off the big reveal, Chelsie turned to her former high-school classmate Kara Fishbaugh, 26, of Kara Quinn Photography.
“Originally, I was really torn about having someone help me with this surprise, purely due to the fact that I wanted Will to be the absolute first person to know,” Morales told TODAY. “However, I’ve tried taping surprises in the past, and something always seems to go wrong. I knew that if I wanted to capture this the right way, I needed to let someone else in on the secret.”
Morales, who says that “surprises are kind of my thing,” struggled to keep the big news from her husband for four days until the time of the photo shoot, which she told him was a prize they had won.
One the day of the shoot, both women were nervous.
“Chelsie and I planned the entire shoot down to the minute,” Fishbaugh told TODAY Parents. “I remember stumbling on my words and fumbling through my camera bag. I remember looking at Chelsie and feeling like ‘okay we can do this!’
To pull off the surprise, Fishbaugh told the couple they were going to play some games.
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"First, I asked then to stand chest to chest and for Will to kiss Chelsie on the face as fast as he could, ten times," she said. "Then I said, ‘okay next I have kind of a nerdy game, but it always gets great reactions out of people.’ I grabbed two chalkboards and asked them to stand back to back. They were then instructed to write three words they admire most about each other. Will said, ‘oh I love this!’ He quickly wrote down his words and we were ready for the reveal. You can see through the images how the rest played out. The game couldn’t have went any better!”
Chelsie said that she was incredibly moved by her husband’s reaction to the life-changing news.
“His reaction far exceeded any expectations I had,” said Chelsie, who is now 14 weeks along. “I knew he would be thrilled, however you never know what their reaction will be when getting a surprise like this out of the blue!"
The photos will be a treasured keepsake not only for the couple, but for their baby-to-be, she said.
"I love that you can see every reaction captured in the pictures," Morales said. "From reading the sign and seeing his brain register what he was reading, to pure joy, to ‘Are you serious?!’ As soon as he reacted, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house, mine included. I couldn’t wipe the grin from my face for the rest of the shoot. I just kept imagining showing our child someday and showing him or her how truly ecstatic his or her parents were to start this journey.”