Allison Hill had a dream — to attend a taping of “The Ellen Show.”
Little did the Utah mother-to-be know that she would be a part of the show for its biggest giveaway — "The Ellen DeGeneres Show Mother's Day Special," on which host Ellen DeGeneres generously delivers thousands of dollars' worth of prizes to first-time pregnant women.
Hill, who is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said two days after attending the taping she still couldn't believe she appeared on “Ellen,” which featured guests Goldie Hawn and Amy Schumer.
“It was just surreal,” she told the Deseret News. “From the second it started … it was actually emotional. I just cried the entire time. I just couldn’t believe her generosity, and I also had no idea how much it costs to have a baby, so I was very grateful.”
Hill, who is five months pregnant, won nearly $6,500 in prizes on Wednesday (the show aired Thursday). It’s the show’s biggest giveaway, according to the TV show’s website.
Hill and her husband, Kevin, won a one-year supply of Huggies diapers and wipes, as well as Plum Organics baby food. She and her husband also won a trip to Palm Springs.
Then there was a crib, a crib mattress, a stroller, a "self-installing" car seat and a Kate Spade diaper bag.
Oh, and that’s not counting the gift cards to Home Depot, Carter's and Amazon.
Hill said she cried the entire time.
“I still don’t feel like it’s real. It honestly feels like a dream. It’s all kind of a blur,” she said. She added, “It was so emotional, and I just felt so grateful that I was there.”
But Hill almost gave up hope that she would appear on the show. She applied more than a month ago and didn’t think she’d get in because she is from Utah and not from California.
She thought she had lost her chance when her email inbox ran dry.
And then she checked her spam folder. Sitting there was the invitation she dreamed of receiving.
“But it still didn’t feel real," she said. "It actually still doesn’t feel real.”
Hill said she always dreamed of seeing DeGeneres live. She said she lucked out that the show she attended was the same one where they were giving out prizes.
Hill, who works for the Deseret News as a promotions manager, said her baby is due Oct. 10. Interestingly, she noted that she attended the show on May 10 at 3:30 p.m. And her ticket number was, you guessed it, 10.
“I feel like 10 is my lucky number,” she said.
A photo of Allison Hill's ticket for the show. | Courtesy Allison Hill
Hill said her baby came as a surprise after she and her husband bought their first home seven months ago in Utah.
“Everything was happening at once," she said. "Which is another reason why this opportunity was such a big blessing for us. We would have made it work, but this definitely made it work.”
Hill said she hadn’t revealed her baby’s gender to her family yet (it’s a girl, she told us), even though she found out the day before she went on "Ellen."
No names have been picked out yet.
“I feel like I just want to see my baby girl and then name her,” she said.
Hill said she struggled with her pregnancy in the beginning, getting sick a lot of the time. But recently, the turbulence has smoothed out, and she has enjoyed it ever since.
“Surprisingly, I love being pregnant and all the changes that come along with it," she said. "It’s just been a beautiful experience, and I know it’s just going to keep getting better. And I can’t wait to meet my baby.”
She can’t wait to start shopping with her husband for new products using the gift cards she received from the show. The Home Depot card is her husband’s favorite item, she said.
Allison Hill poses with her husband Kevin. | Courtesy Allison Hill
Kevin Hill said he loved the energy of the show.
"Everyone was so pumped," he said.
"I look at it as a huge blessing to receive those gifts," he said. "I feel like Ellen is an advocate for good. I can't imagine how many people's lives she has changed."
Allison Hill said she'll never forget the "Ellen" experience.
“It was definitely a dream come true,” she said.