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38 week pregnancy update

WHY IS TIME GOING SO QUICKLY?!! I have so much still to do, and not much time to do it in!! So week 38 has crept upon us relatively quickly – here’s how I’ve been feeling this week!

Symptom Update:

I have been feeling pretty good this week all in all, I’m now on maternity leave and literally soaking up all the goodness! I have so much TIME to bloggggg and vlogggg and sleeeeep and reeeeaaaddddd etc… Honestly I think I’m going to have the shock of my life when he gets here!

38wks-2My sleep is still much better, apart from needing to pee probably about 5-6 times per night… I am still getting little cramps here and there when I change position because little Lo Lo is pushing all of my uterine muscles out of place (thumbs up emoji)…

My feet have also been pretty painful and swollen this week, especially in the hot weather, so that’s been a bit rubbish because it means I just have to sit and not do very much when I’ve got so much to do!

I’ve also noticed, just in the past few days, that I’m starting to get a very dull period-pain type pain in my lower abdomen and sometimes my lower back, kind of like the ache you get when you’re going to come on in the next few days… Nothing painful, just an ache really – so that’s exciting! I am also starting to feel a LOT more pressure in my pelvis and hips, I think Lawson is really digging deep now getting ready to go!

38wks-3Cravings:

All of the squash please. Still going to absolute town on the apple and blackcurrant, aren’t I? I’m also eating a lot of toast… And just a lot of food in general… Standard.

Movement:

Movement is definitely different at the moment. He’s certainly not as active as he used to be but I’m fairly sure that’s due to him running out of room. He does still move but it’s a lot more slight than usual. This is something I’ll be checking with my midwife next week – I have heard that babies tend to quieten down before labour because they’re conserving energy, but all the professional advice I have heard says that he should be active right until the end, so I’ll keep you posted!

38wks-1Make sure you check out my 38 week update on my YouTube channel and subscribe if you haven’t already!

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September 21, 2016

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Hospital Bag Checklist

Being the organised person I am, I started packing my hospital bag at about 35 weeks pregnant… The only downfall is, I didn’t really finish it until very recently. I think because we are having a home birth, I didn’t really want to commit to the idea that we could end up going to hospital, so if I didn’t have a bag ready, it wouldn’t happen, right?!

Well that was silly… So first day of maternity leave, I decided to pull myself together and just get it done.

I used various outlets to help me decide what I needed in my bag(s) (there are 4 in total… too much?!) from Pinterest to Mothercare, and came up with a list that suited me. And today I’m going to share it with you!

For any other first time mamas who are struggling to know what is too much or too little, this one is for you. I’m not saying I have everything completely right, but this was what worked for me. You’re welcome.

hospital-checklist

A few things to talk about here – mainly toilet wipes (nice). It’s no secret that our ‘areas’ are going to be pretty sore after giving birth, mamas, so someone recommended that for the first week or so, using moist toilet wipes instead of regular toilet tissue is a God-send. I’ve also heard that lip balm is an absolute must, especially if planning on using gas and air (which I most certainly am)!

Just going to insert a little ‘birth hack’ here too, I have heard of some mums putting a bit of water/aloe vera gel on maternity pads and then freezing them for after the birth – apparently really soothing! Again, you’re welcome.

Some of these items lend themselves to a more natural/hypnobirthing setting, such as aromatherapy and massage oils, but even if you’re not going down that route – still all useful things to have I feel!

baby-checklist

And here’s baby’s bag! I have chosen to separate the two, just for easy access. Some people say you need more, some people say you need less. For us, these are the basics we are going with (as we’re not really planning on actually going to hospital!), and it’s fairly easy for Daniel to pop home and grab more stuff if needed.

Feel free to utilise these as you wish, and also check out the videos on this on my YouTube channel to see the actual items.

September 19, 2016

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37 week pregnancy update!

I have made it!! I am officially full term! Whuuuuuttttt!! It feels crazy, and I can definitely feel that there has been a huge shift in my body and perspective that Lawson really can come whenever he is ready now! Crayyyyyy!

Symptom Update:

This week has been SO much better, thank God. Thanks to a combination of antihistamines, steroid cream and tar soap, my rash has completely cleared up! It’s a Christmas miracle! I’m so happy that I’m not constantly itching anymore, my sleep has certainly improved because of it too.

This week has also seen me return to work for 1 1/2 weeks (was supposed to be 2 – but the struggle was too real), so I think because I have been a lot more active during the day, my sleep has improved an awful lot! I am however getting the most painful feet I have had yet – I think it’s just water retention, but honestly, them cankles though…

I also had a midwife appointment this week – I’m finding that I get a lot more nervous for these appointments now, because it tends to be around this time that things can start to go a bit wrong… But everything was absolutely fine! My blood pressure was up a tiny bit, but she didn’t seem worried about that, and everything else from my pee to baby’s position was great – he is now 3/5’s engaged!! Go on, son!

Our midwife also came and did our home birthing visit this week, which all made it a bit too real a bit too quickly if I’m honest! Had a slight wobble after that one! But we have got the go ahead, we are good to go with our home birth and she explained very clearly how it all works and what’s going to happen… Eeek!

37wks-1Cravings:

I am still unhealthily obsessed with apple and blackcurrant squash… It’s getting a bit out of hand now I feel, but it’s literally all I want in life. I have found that my appetite has gone a bit crazy this week, I’m putting that down to returning to work and being more active than usual though… But I am literally hungry all the time. It’s constant…!

Movement:

Little Lo Lo is still on the go pretty regularly – he likes making strange shapes in my stomach… I only have my background in dance to thank for that! They are most certainly more squirms and rolls now rather than actual kicks, but occasionally he’ll give me a jab with his feet under my ribs – what a sweetheart.

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I am also getting quite a lot of pressure down in my pelvis and around my hips, which I’m hoping is a good sign of him nestling down ready for departure!

As usual, there is a 37 week pregnancy update on my YouTube channel, go check it out if you haven’t already!

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September 16, 2016

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36 week pregnancy update

So it’s official – we are now in the month that I am due to have my baby! What a crazy ol’ feeling that is! So the last 2 weeks have been quite eventful – probably the hardest 2 weeks of my pregnancy so far… Although I’m still undecided as to whether the third trimester is worse than the first… Let me know your thoughts!

36 wks 2

Symptom Update:

Over the last 2 weeks I have developed a skin rash called ‘polymorphic eruption of pregnancy’ – it basically starts in your stretch marks, is itchy, and becomes red and inflamed quite quickly! I went to my doctor, who prescribed me with a steroid cream, the results of which have been quite underwhelming to be honest. So when the rash started to spread, (I’m talking legs, bum, arms, hands etc), I kind of had to go back because it’s actually taking over my body! He then prescribed me with some antihistamines, which make me feel super drowsy so I take them at night hoping that they might help me sleep?!

Speaking of sleep, it’s pretty much non-existent right now – I’m waking up quite often in the night, and it seems to be a different symptom each time! Sometimes it’s my rash, sometimes it’s hip ache, back ache, rib ache (a new addition since last night!)

I have absolutely loved being pregnant, but in terms of physical symptoms – I’m so over it!

36 wks 3

Cravings:

My main craving is the same as 2 weeks ago (it’s been quite a long one, this one!) and that is Apple and Blackcurrant squash. Preferably the double strength one from Tesco… I actually tried the Robinsons one and it just didn’t hit the spot! So I’ve been going through that fairly rapidly, makes me happy!

Movement:

Our little active peanut is still verrryyyy active, lots of rolls and him making funny shapes in my belly! It can be quite uncomfortable, particularly because now I think he is fully upside down and his feet are underneath my ribs (ouch). But still very thankful that I can feel him so much and that means he is a happy baby! Yay!

I’m very much hoping that my symptoms improve over the next few weeks, especially as I’m going back to work on Monday for 2 weeks (not sure what I was thinking?!) So #prayforhayley

36 wks 1

As usual, my 36 week update vlog is live on my channel – if you want to check it out you can find it here:

September 2, 2016

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MY BABY SHOWER!

My baby shower this weekend was probably one of the most special (and surreal) days of my life! There is something quite rare about being surrounded by lots of people you love who are supporting you and cheering you on for a new adventure, and I loved every minute! Massive shout out to my wonderful sister-in-law and fellow mama blogger Emma Skirrow (http://milkmarket.skizzar.com) and my amazing mother for putting so much hard work into making this day so damn Pinterest worthy!

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I have also done a little vlog version of my baby shower – check it out here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bweooMTe-5o

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August 31, 2016

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34 week pregnancy update

It’s that time again, it’s getting kind of creepy how fast time keeps going… I think I’m in slight denial that I am 34 weeks pregnant and I’ve only got 6 weeks left! Eek!

SYMPTOM UPDATE:

These two weeks have been very much the same as my last update, just with some added newbies. #teamnosleep is very much still in the picture, although this week I have hip ache to add into the mix! I think because I have my pregnancy pillow a weird way when I’m sleeping, and that good old relaxin hormone is making my whole body feel like jelly, my hips are doing something weird in my sleep and I’m waking up in some serious pain! I am finding that yoga stretches are helping, along with actually just using regular pillows instead of my pregnancy pillow. Heartburn and indigestion haven’t been as bad thankfully during these few weeks, so that’s been a nice break! I’ve also had another strange addition this week in that the skin around my belly has been quite sore the last few days. I think because little Lo Lo is so low down (it’s in the name, really), my skin is super stretched and has become quite sore – so there’s been a lot of moisturiser being applied!

34 weeks 2

CRAVINGS:

Oh my giddy aunt. I have an outrageous obsession with apple and blackcurrant squash at the moment. And by outrageous I mean that I finished a whole bottle (undiluted) in just over 24 hours… Daniel actually tried to ban me from drinking squash this week because he’s worried about the high sugar content, so I’ve had to resort to secretive squash drinking (soz babe)… But we’ve found a solution in that next time, I’m going to buy the low sugar version, because then everyone wins. I’m again getting that feeling where whenever I get what I’m craving I feel absolutely amazing for about 30 minutes, before then craving it some more. I think out of all of my cravings this one has been the most excessive!

34 weeks 1

MOVEMENT:

Little Lo Lo is still super active which is always a good sign – lots of rolling around and changing positions, and also a lot of stabs in the v-jay jay (TMI), which is quite possibly one of the most uncomfortable things I’ve ever experienced! I went to trusty old Google on this one though (my search engine history is honestly hilarious), and it said that it’s either the baby’s head nestling down (go on, son), or my cervix dilating (wtf). I’m at the midwife on Thursday next week so I will be sure to keep you updated on that delightful detail!

As always I have a 34 week update video on my YouTube channel so be sure to check that out too!

 

August 21, 2016

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Maternity Photo Shoot

Don’t know about you, but I think photographs are one of the best ways to capture a point in time. I have loved being pregnant so much, so I knew I wanted to mark it by having some beautiful photos taken, but at the same time, I was defo not prepared to fork out hundreds of pounds for a shoot! So… I put my Instagram husband to the absolute test and thought we’d have a go at our own make-shift maternity shoot using nothing more than natural light, our trusty Olympus Pen camera and a whole load of Photoshop. Here are the results!

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I am super proud of these photos and think they will do an amazing job of reminding me how wonderful pregnancy is!

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August 15, 2016

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32 week pregnancy update

A heck of a lot to update you on this week!

SYMPTOM UPDATE:

I am now officially a member of #teamnosleep – my body is fully preparing me, it seems, for life after labour. My brain is on total overdrive so I’m sleeping very lightly, backache has started too, right in between my shoulder blades, and indigestion is now a regular part of my life! Lack of sleep is certainly making me more of an emotional mess too!

I’m also getting quite a few bouts of low blood pressure, which just means I’m feeling dizzy and sick and just generally quite weak which isn’t very nice. I’ve been getting some lower abdominal cramping this week too, particularly when I change position at night, I think it’s just his head moving, but it’s pretty uncomfortable!

This week I think I’ve also had a bit of a tummy bug. I am starting to feel the full effects of that relaxin hormone, as my digestive system just seems to have given up on life!

32 wks 2MIDWIFE UPDATE:

I had another midwife appointment this week where I was able to get back my blood and pee results, and both came back completely clear! Yay! So no UTI, and no issues with iron levels, which is wonderful. She also checked his position again and his head is still really low down – she said that it’s a really positive indication that he’s going to fit! Great news!

CRAVINGS:

My appetite has mostly returned to normal, although I don’t feel like I am eating very healthy at the moment. Should probably make more of an effort to do that…

32 wks 1MOVEMENT:

Little Lawson has been super active this week and making my belly do funny shapes!

32 week update is also on my YouTube channel – find it here:

August 12, 2016

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30 week pregnancy update

This week has been fairly full on with midwife appointments, a comeback from the first trimester and England deciding to have a heat wave.

SYMPTOM UPDATE:

Tiredness is still a fairly big issue for me right now, and I don’t think the 30-degree heat helps with that! However it is nearing the end of term (hooray!), so I think maybe that has something to do with it. I have also been having weird appetite symptoms again, like not really knowing what I fancy and taking ages to make a decision on anything food related – #tb to first trimester anyone?! I am also in a constant state of swelling, which is funny to look at. My hands and feet, because of the hot weather, are kind of permanently chubby, and cankles are now securely a part of my life.

30 wks 2CRAVINGS:

Because it’s hot, I just want cold things in my mouth most of the time. So things like ice cream, ice-lollies, plain ice etc, are absolute winners right now. Meat is still something I am fairly big on too.

30 wks 4MOVEMENT:

I am still feeling lots of movement, which is wonderful. He has slowed down the past few days, but I think that’s probably due to the heat! His kicks are getting stronger and slightly more uncomfortable, and Daniel was able to feel his hiccups the other day, which is still the cutest thing in the world!

30 wks 1MIDWIFE UPDATE:

I had a midwife appointment this week where I had another load of blood taken and also had my whooping cough vaccine, (does anyone really know how to pronounce that?!) She also felt for Lawson’s position, and he’s head down! Yay! I feel so proud that he knows to go into that position ready for birth! He’s just so smart!

The midwife also tested my wee and discovered that I may have a UTI, so she is sending that off for testing. It kind of makes sense seeing as I am spending most of my life on the toilet these days.

30 wks 3As usual – my 30 week update is up on my channel – enjoy!

 

 

August 12, 2016

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Exercise During Pregnancy

Time to come clean guys. I’ve let myself go.

Let me give you a bit of context into my pre-pregnant life. I am usually quite an active person (generally speaking) – I trained as a dancer for a number of years, and am a qualified dance and Pilates teacher. Safe to say exercise and physical activity played a fairly large part in my life! So when I got pregnant, surely that made it easy, right? I could just carry on as normal and job done. Life’s good.

exercise 1Hmmmm, not so much… as soon as my first trimester symptoms hit, I had never felt so drained in my life, and I just felt like I didn’t have the energy to exercise. This went on for a good 9 weeks or so, which is plenty of time for your body to lose muscle mass and for your fitness ability to fly out the window! Which is exactly what happened!

I went through a phase during the second trimester, where I rationalised my lack of exercise by thinking it just wasn’t worth it. ‘I’m used to such intense work outs…’ I used to think, ‘that all of this pregnancy Pilates and Yoga crap isn’t going to do anything for me anyway, so I may as well just wait until I’ve had Lawson and then hit it super hard.’ That was legit my thought process (clapping hands emoji). So during this time I put on a significant amount of weight (not just because of my newly formed baby bump), and I have the stretch marks on my inner thighs to prove it!

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So fast forward to present day, 32 + 3 weeks pregnant and sporting a fairly sizeable baby bump, I finally feel like I have my energy back and am finally starting to look towards my ‘post-pregnancy life’. I have come to the realisation that if I continue to do nothing, life after pregnancy is going to be significantly harder, and the rate at which I am able to shed my pregnancy weight is going to be significantly slower! So here is my plan of action, and I’m sharing it with you, because now it’s on the internet, I can’t get out of it.

I plan to go on walks whenever I can. Not only will this allow me to progress in terms of my Pokemon Go level, but it’s also good for me and my baby! Double win! Walking is seriously beneficial when you’re pregnant; not only does it keep you active, but it also encourages your baby to get into the right position for birth, and improves your emotional wellbeing (which, lets be honest, is much needed during pregnancy! Hormones, anyone?!)

I also plan to get into Pregnancy Yoga. The reason I’m so into this right now, is not because I have a huge desire to stay active or improve my flexibility or whatever, it’s actually to relieve my flippin’ back ache! I find the less you move your body when you’re pregnant, the more it seems to seize up and become tight and tense. Which isn’t ideal. I have found yoga so helpful to ease back pain and any other pains I might have going that day. It’s also mega relaxing and has huge benefits for labour (so I’m told… I’ll keep you posted on that one!)

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It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that pregnancy changes your body in ways that are both weird and wonderful. However, I think the key is finding ways of moving your body that you enjoy, because otherwise, there’s kinda no hope of it being a long term solution.

Here is my YouTube equivalent of this blog post, where I make my exercise pledges in video form!

August 8, 2016

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