Thursday 30 June 2016

Wiggle Wiggle

So I said a little while back that we, as in me, had felt the first movements of my baby in my tum. Now I'm over 18 weeks the movements are getting much more noticeable and those small flutters have become the swooshing and rolling you read about.

I'm in complete and utter awe of the human body. And to also give credit to mine, as it (so far) has seemed to do what it's supposed to for a pregnant body. Normally it dances to the beat of its own drum for Crohn's and I've had to just cope with whatever it did.

Saying that though, the last few days I've been feeling a tad ropey and decided to stay at home and rest whilst trying to determine if I'm wiped out from baby or Crohn's. Fortunately I'm back at the hospital again on Monday with the IBD doctor for pregnant ladies so I'll be sure to express my concerns/symptoms with her. For the time being I am going to try and have a Modulen each day as I'm currently struggling with all the poos again; I'm worried I won't put enough weight on for the bab. Fingers crossed I'm just run down like any normal mum-to-be and it's not going to be a case of putting me back on steroids because I'm flaring. We shall see!

Anyway...I've had many a sound and feelings happen in my stomach from Crohn's which to a non-IBDer would probably be a WTF moment. But the baby moving!? That's insane. Especially now it's more often and clearer. I had my first experience of skin movement over the weekend and it was the most bizarre thing! Watching the skin on my bump wobble a bit on its own?!? Only for a second, mind. And then it happened again later on in the evening. I tried to get the other half to see but alas not yet. There was a lot of aimless staring by the both of us, waiting, just waiting for something to happen. But another few days or so and I think it'll be a lot easier for him to see his baby moving around. Plus it's only a couple of weeks until we see our baby on screen again. Such love.

I'm really enjoying pregnancy though; that surprises me slightly because as much as I wanted to enjoy it, I was worried I'd spend the whole time feeling poorly and/or struggling to embrace the changes to my body. But I've been fortunate to have a relatively normal pregnancy thus far and I'm the closest to remission with my Crohn's that I've ever been (despite the odd hiccup). Who would have thought making a human would fix me?! Albeit - potentially - temporarily.

I am going to continue putting my stretch mark oil on my bump every night, watch the silvery teenage lines on my hips and thighs get that bit bigger and watch as my body carries on changing to make sure the tiny person has everything it needs to grow into a healthy baby. And anyway...
Same applies to all things baby bump and boobies.


Monday 27 June 2016

Nursery Nesting

I went to Mothercare on the weekend and took myself by surprise with how I reacted when I walked in; I had a little lump in my throat. I AM SO EMOTIONAL.

It was probably due to being completely overwhelmed that I was actually (window) shopping for the baby in my tummy. The miniature human who will definitely be here in just over 19 weeks. And also because all of the clothes were so bloody small you couldn't help but squeal a bit as you walked by them.

You may think that all sounds ridiculous, but you have to bear in mind that I'm the type of gal who will buy a small deodorant in the queue at Boots, purely based on the fact it's a small version of the bigger cans. You can imagine how much I love travel products. Everything so little. Same seems to apply to baby clothes.

It was a worthwhile trip though as so far we've only really generically looked at nursery furniture online and haven't even started to look at specific brands for the travel systems, et al. There's so much to it all!

I think for the time being (as official nesting can begin end of July, post-scan) we're going to make a list of all things advised to have when having a child; taken from forums, parenting magazines, online advice. Then we can whittle it down to the following...

  • What's essential and we couldn't possibly do without
  • What isn't necessarily must-have, but would essentially fall under a life hack if you've got it
  • What would be lovely to have if we had the space/money (one can dream)
  • What we really don't need
I am so excited to start the proper foundations of creating our child's room. Colour swatches, cribs and cots, soft furnishings, playmats and bouncing chairs. Many elements to think of and so I'm making the most of my organisational head before my Baby Brain becomes 99% of me. 


Onto my 18 weeks #bumpingalong and there are two photos this week: one I have already shared on my Instagram on Friday because the dress was new and I just wanted to show it off to the world. It was that kind of Friday feeling, in a dress. I just felt nice.

It's from asos maternity, size 10, but it's got a good amount of room to stretch into. It's a tricky business, buying maternity online. I'm going under the assumption that they might be a tad loose(ish) around the middle now but I'm sure it's only a matter of time until that is filled with baby bump!

My actual #bumpingalong photo from today and it's on location.

Wearing a non-maternity Boohoo dress in a size 10 - it's sort of like a smock which is why I can get away with it, bump included. And, well, clogs. I'm open to the variety of shoe styles!

I did a full wardrobe clear out over the weekend and broke my clothes down into three categories: have I worn it in the last year, will I want to wear it after baby, can I wear it as I grow? There was lots of trying on and moments where I felt more like Gus in Cinderella when his t-shirt pops back over his belly, but I think I got there in the end. A full spring cleanse and it felt good! I've allowed myself room to invest in a few more essential maternity items, kept clothes that are special to me but also got rid of things that I've been saying for too long that "I'll wear that again soon"...

It seems having a baby gets you all kind of pro-active and organised.

Only a few more weeks until the real nesting fun begins!


What's in a Name?

I honestly didn't think choosing a name for the child that I'm carrying would be so bloody hard. Naive, perhaps. But it's really quite the task! Don't underestimate the responsibility in naming another human forever. Pets are hard enough.

Through what must be hundreds of names that the fiancé and I have looked at, girls names seem so much easier to pick. They just seem to have more variety? Whereas the boys name seem quite samey (sorry chaps!) Maybe that's just what it appears to me - but the general consensus from other parents I've spoken with, is that they also found girls names easier to choose.

Are there any hints and tips for choosing a name? As we don't want to find out what we're having, it obviously means we need to have names for both a little boy and a little girl. If there's a little girl growing in me then we're sorted! If it's a boy, then it is currently nameless...But then again maybe it will mean we do actually find out at our 20 week scan in two weeks - because then we know what sort of name we have to choose.

Is there a criteria to follow to help you decide what you name your child? Or is it an epiphany and suddenly you have that moment of 'I hereby name my offspring ...'? If I'm to go by some of the names that have popped up in my (very) vivid dreams, then there's currently a little boy in my womb and I've called him Hector.


Monday 20 June 2016

First Day of Summer?!

And it's miserable outside! I've had to dress like it's ruddy November - although if it was actually November I would be ready to drop and probably a lot more uncomfortable than I am now. Wah. Forget sometimes that I've got to get the baby out...

But that's a while away yet! So onto today's #ootd for #bumpingalong; today I am officially 17 weeks and according to my countdown only 150 days until baby arrives. Unless the little one decides to make an even earlier than scheduled appearance.

I am in my Topshop maternity jeans, LaModa boots, a Primark non-maternity vest and my newest purchase; a size 12 non-maternity shackett (shirt + jacket. Like the jegging of the torso) from Topshop. A little bit in love with the camo print and it's large enough that it should be a good go-to to chuck on when I'm feeling a tad swollen with baby.

Oh Monday, Monday.

Other goings on this week: I've got the hospital on Wednesday so will no doubt blog about it afterwards. 'Tis with the IBD midwives to make sure that everything is ok with baby, but also with my Crohn's. Symptom-wise, things are still relatively calm which is ace. Although my bowels have been a tad wobbly since I started introducing meat back into my diet (now it doesn't make me nauseous) Not sure if it's because of the dietary change or if my Crohn's is slightly more active than it has been?! Will be in the best place to check this week so we shall see!

Another thing re pregnancy. My skin. On my face. I feel all sorts of pubescent again. I suddenly have these breakouts which I didn't even get when I was a teenager! I've never been hot on good facial skincare but I am in need of a trip to Boots to say HELP ME FIX MY SKIN. The amount of hormones rushing around my body seem to have gone all over my face. And I'm developing what I now know is the 'mask of pregnancy'. For those of you not sure, it's essentially a blotchy face because of all the melanin in my body. Apparently fades after giving birth. Mmm such a glow.

I also have early onset of nesting. Like so much determination to nest. As in I got a cab from Argos yesterday because I wanted to get the new rug and coffee table home and get building. Just call me Handy Andy off of Changing Rooms - tape measure and screwdriver to hand. I'm setting little tasks for each weekend until after our scan and then it's full time nesting! Painting, building, faffing with soft furnishings, rearranging furniture and buying small things for the new small person. My Pinterest is going to be in need of a rest by the end of July! As will the other half and I.


Friday 17 June 2016

#bumpingalong so far

If you follow on me on Instagram you will have seen that over the last couple of weeks I've put up some pictures of me avec bump and they've been posted with the hashtag #bumpingalong.

I thought for those who don't follow me on Instagram (I post lovely things, by the way) here's a quick run down of some of the outfits we've had so far...

A non-maternity Topshop dress in a size 12 given to me as a birthday present. Also available in maternity although as I was only 14+2 weeks, I still had room to wear the slightly larger size of clothes not intended for mamas-to-be. Very comfy. Very stretchy. Shoes are flat because that's something I've realised I need to give in to. WAH. I'm a massive fan of heels, so we'll see how long I can eek out wearing them before I wholly commit to all the flat shoes. But there's my sensible footwear for you. Whole combo with a Sport Luxe vibe...or something like that.

This was taken the day after, so 14+3 weeks. Another Topshop non-maternity item, this time in a size 14. It's actually a jumpsuit and the closest item I have to a pregnancy unitard (which I will find and I will wear) but this was the first time I'd worn something that openly highlights the bump without the strategic photo hand. The size 12 fitted fine, although I didn't want to buy clothes that will only end up being worn a handful of times before the baby is the size of some dramatically large fruit. 

15+3 weeks in this one and there was a hint of British Summertime; hence the flatforms and bardot neckline. This is a non-maternity dress from way back when off of asos, but it's one of those that's just soooo comfortable and regardless of the bloat/bump always seems to make you feel good in it. Hair hadn't been washed for about a week because the shower was broken - yet a dash of red lipstick and dry shampoo and boom baby: a relatively presentable person.

And so to yesterday's outfit where I was 16+3 weeks and a tad glam for a Thursday. Dress is non-maternity from Topshop in a size 12. Wedges are an old faithful from New Look and I actually managed to last in them all day! Even if today I've been a bit nana-esque in my movement. As you can see the bump is growing and I obviously felt the need to point at it, in case you weren't sure where it was.

Today's outfit is much more in keeping with the general office term of 'dress down Friday', except I seem to have taken that and added in 'hair like you're aged 9' too and forgot to generally look awake. I am wearing my maternity shirt from Topshop in a size 10 (AN ACTUAL MATERNITY ITEM) and I'm wearing trousers that are most definitely not maternity from H&M. I say this as I can't actually do them up (!) but I just have my maternity jeans at the moment. It's the next task on my list; leggings, harem pants and what not. I can't wear skirts or dresses every day - think of the maintenance of shaving my legs! Christ, no. Get me some long johns with baby room stat.

So yes. There's a wee selection of my #ootd over the last few weeks. Have decided to continue this but actually take the photos on the turn of each week; e.g. the next one will be when I'm 17 weeks exactly, and so on... This way it means I'll have regular posts on it, but also it allows me to look back at the changes in my bump as the pregnancy progresses. 

And it means less pressure on putting together a snazzy outfit all the time. Win win.


Tuesday 14 June 2016

Maid to Bump

What a weekend! I had the privilege of being Maid of Honour for my best friend of 25 years, and what an absolute delight it was. Such a beautiful day.

From a pregnancy perspective, a few key points to note from the wonderful day: being pregnant and hormonal means you have absolutely zero control over your emotions and when people are doing the delicate tear and wipe of the eye, you will be ugly crying in the corner - the odd yelp escaping as you try and keep it together. Secondly, if you wear heels as part of your outfit and for most of the day, it will feel like you've ran 83 marathons the following morning.

Patsy & Eddie Forever
It was my first wedding, or major social event, where I've been with bump openly and well...people just touch it?!

It's so strange! The majority of friends would ask before their hands made contact with my belly. But some people would touch it and use it as a conversation starter; 'first baby?' Yes thanks, although I'm not sure how you touching it has anything to do with whether it's my first or eighth baby?

I honestly don't mind - it's a new thing that I'm experiencing as the baby gets bigger, and naturally so does my bump. It's just better when people ask beforehand. I think it's more that people talk and touch it like it's independent of you. But it isn't. It's my skin, on my body and it's my baby. I can feel you touching me when you're touching the baby bump. Duhhh.

My bump is quite something though! I'm only 16 weeks + and the waddling walk is now a thing. God knows what I'll be like in another 4 or so weeks. Let alone in a few months time!? Again putting this down to being 160cm in height and not having the longest torso in the world...I'm a condensed potato.

Now I'm off to the doctors to check baby is all ok as I've had some odd pain sensations in the ovary area of late. Would rather be told I'm being terribly over-dramatic but baby is safe and well; put my mind at rest and hopefully get a better night's sleep. Rather than assume it's normal and then it may be something a bit more worrying.

And I've got my first official pregnancy pre-natal massage this evening. Can't wait to be rubbed down. WHAT A TREAT.


Baby is fine! I was the hypochondriac mum-to-be (oh gosh) but as I said before, would rather be safe than sorry. Turns out that as the baby grows, it isn't always going to feel like a long stretching feeling where my ligaments et al are prepping the small human's home. So this concentrated pain that I've had the last few days is my pelvic tendon, where it's attached and where it's being pulled. The doctor explained it to me that if I was holding a cut elastic band, and he pulled it away from me, it's the end I'm holding that is the bit hurting as it stretches away. Learn something new every day - especially with this pregnancy malarkey. I'll be a fountain of knowledge by the time this baby comes out.

Side note re pre-natal massage, it was everything I hoped it would be and more. Although it was an odd beginning and I'll tell you for why; normally when I'm told to lie on my side on a pop up bed it's because it's all things bum end and with my gastro team. Not the most relaxing of activities. But that's not what happened on this Tuesday evening! Oh the massage was divine! I feel like a new woman and my back feels brand new. Something I would highly recommend when preggers and I will be having many more of these over the coming weeks. I'm ready to be a pampered woman.

So to now where I'm in my soft clothes, feet up, washed hair and baby's on the move. Bliss.

Monday 6 June 2016


I'm 15 weeks and experienced the first fluttering of baby movement this weekend.

OH. MY. A movement independent of me, but in me. Mind blown once more.

It was a strange experience as the first time I felt it I thought it was probably wind (because, that happens when you're pregnant you know. All the flatulence. So glamorous)

Thought I won't make a fuss, keep calm because it might not be baby. But when it happened again the following day I was like yes...this is my baby moving and I can feel it. The joy it gave me knowing that things seem to be ok if the baby is wiggling around!? But how to explain what it felt like?

The best way I can describe it is like a flutter - a small popping against the skin - a bubble.

I believe I'm heading into the time frame where these little flutterings will become more frequent and in the coming weeks it'll be a definite that's my baby moving.

For now though I'm happy with my little internal bubbles because it means that I know that my baby is having a little dance. And that's simply magical.


Sunday 5 June 2016

Dietician Time

Got the hospital tomorrow morning to see my gastro dietician. It's a scheduled appointment from the end of last year for Crohn's, but has actually come at the perfect time in my pregnancy. This is because I want to put my mind at rest and make sure that I would be able to put on the required weight for baby and me.

I say this based on how my body can drop weight so quickly when flaring and generally how hard it can be to put weight on with Crohn's (unless you're on steroids - hello swollen moon). Over the last few weeks my weight generally hasn't changed. Like to the decimal hasn't changed, at times. But now it's creeping in the right direction which is good!

As I mentioned in a previous post, my Crohn's is as calm as it's been in years. But being pregnant has played havoc with my eating; I've completely gone off meat, and in the first trimester I was feeling nauseous all the time so eating was tricky. Despite taking the pregnancy supplements, I want to know that I am eating all the right things for a good healthy development of the little human.

Being in the glorious second trimester I have my appetite back now so I'm excited to see what recipes I can come up with that tick all the nutritional boxes for the two of us (!) based on my catch up tomorrow with my gastro dietician.

I'm making a conscious effort to eat well with these new culinary cravings and it's given me an opportunity to explore the vegetarian world a little bit - my favourite being a vegetarian chilli con carne with all the beans that I rustled up. So good!

Will post a few of my favourite recipes for any of you foodies out there as I get more adventurous with the ingredients.

But as it stands, bring me all the food. I'm ready.


Saturday 4 June 2016

See it. Pin it.

I'm going on full Pinterest binges and I need to be stopped. Well not really, let's not be too dramatic now. But I am having such fun.

It's a weird comforting activity to scroll through nursery and clothing ideas for the baby - especially because we don't know if it's a boy or a girl, there's double the amount to look through. I just love it.

I'd say I'm a bit of a creative soul anyway and I've always loved visual ideas, so knowing there's a set time frame for baby's arrival means I can make all the plans! But I'm also aware not to get too carried away; although we're in the safe zone after our 12 week scan, we still need to get the 20 week one done and know things are as fine as they can be.

Then the nursery decorating can begin!!

We've made a conscious decision to not have everything stereotypical cream and lemon. Just because we don't know what we're having, doesn't mean we can't have a lovely time with other colours! I'm also not a great believer in the whole pink for girls, blue for boys. Says who?! Coral, mint, monochrome, grey: a fab colour palette for a baby - girl or boy.

This approach would apply to the way we dress the baby as much as it would the nursery decoration, I think. Clothes for newborns are basic in their variety, but the patterns and colours...! I would also like a nod to the traditional in the style of clothes we dress them in. A good cable knit or romper suit perhaps? Beautiful.

Don't get me wrong, this is all very exciting and makes me even more broody if that's possible when you're pregnant? (WILL YOU LOOK AT THEIR LITTLE FACES. OH MY.)  Babies are little lumps of loveliness when they arrive and some of the pictures I've seen have made me do happy tears over the iPad. But whilst scrolling through, my grown up head hasn't ignored the pins for all things sensible and intimidating about being a first-time parent. What a journey that lies ahead...

*Googles parenting help books in preparation*


Thursday 2 June 2016


Old Wives Tales, ladies and gents.

You know the ones...sitting on a cold step gives you piles, don't go outside with wet hair as you'll catch a cold. And a new one I read today: never open the oven door when cooking a soufflé (!) None of which are deemed scientifically true, by the way.

But it's the old wives tales related to pregnancy that really tickle me. Most of them are for working out whether you're having a boy or girl and this is of great interest to me. As the end of my pregnancy is scheduled to the high hills due to my Crohn's, it's unlikely that we'll find out what we're having as that is the only part that will truly be a surprise for us. Of course this can change, so don't hold me to it!

So pass me the ring on a string as I try and work out through some of the more common tales if we're having a Harry or a Harriet...
  1. Sweet or Salt
    • Apparently craving all things sweet is a sign that you're having a girl, salty or protein-rich foods mean it could be a boy.
    • I've gone off meat and all I want to eat is pick'n'mix style sweets, so I'm going team girl.
  2. Morning Sickness
    • A general sign of pregnancy, but excessive nausea and morning sickness can mean a baby girl.
    • I had a terrible first trimester with nausea and sickness so I would definitely put me in the girls' camp for this one.
  3. Pregnancy Glow
    • Hair worthy of a Herbal Essence advert and a bright complexion could signify a little boy. Whereas bad skin and the missing 'glow' could be a little girl.
    • Bit of both here...some people have said that the 'glow' is very much present, although my skin hasn't been great. 50/50.
  4. Moody or Mellow
    • More moody = girl. Chilled out = boy.
    • Ha! If I was answering I'd say I've been quite chilled out, but if the other half was answering (and I was being honest with myself) then I'd probably be more moody. So girl.
  5. Carrying High or Low
    • Legend says that if you're carrying high you're carrying a girl and you'll be carrying low if you're carrying a boy.
    • From the back I don't look preggers at all, so in that sense I'm bump up front. But its height? I'd have to say low, meaning there's a little boy in there.
  6. Ring Test
    • If the ring swings in a circular motion, 'tis a girl! If it's swinging back and forth/side to side, 'tis a boy.
    • Well this was just ridiculous. It didn't really move at all! But when it did it went back and forth (did it though?!) in which case it's the boys' team.
  7. Heart Rate
    • If the baby's heart is beating faster than 140bpm, then there's a wee girl in the bump.
    • Next scan isn't until mid-July so I'll have to keep a sneaky eye out. Maybe.
Based on the above, I haven't got a clue?! Out of 7 old wives tales I got 3 for girl, 2 for boy, one 50/50 and one TBC.

All in all we obviously just hope for a happy healthy baby, boy or girl. But it is good fun doing all the silly games to try and guess!


Bumping Along Nicely

My belly is growing and it is growing fast!

I'm 14+ weeks and my baby bump seems to show no signs of slowing - with quite a few people having commented on my bump size for how far along I am. I'm putting it down to being only 160cm and a small frame. The baby's got to go somewhere?

Apparently these few weeks are the baby's first major growth spurt though; at this rate I'm going to need to be prepared to dress according to my new bumpy shape sooner rather than later... My side profile will look like a capital B before I know it!

So as you may remember, I went shopping last week and it was actually quite a pleasant experience. I got a mixture of maternity and non-maternity clothes and tried on anything and everything I picked up. Some pieces of non-maternity were fine in my usual size (10) as they were a more boyfriend-style fit. Whereas other items I am now wearing are upsized to maximise their longevity.

Bardot swing dress. Topshop. Size 10. Bump hider.
Topshop. Size 12. Stretchy comfort for the win. Also available in Maternity.
My birthday dress. Topshop. Size 12. All in the way it's tied...
However, I do have a whopping three maternity items in my possession now. And boy can I see the appeal! 

JEANS. I own a pair of wearable jeans again. It was one of those things where I was in need of a new pair anyway, but once I found out I was preggers it made sense to wait a while and hop on the elasticated bandwagon. What a joy. The comfort! I think it was made more wonderful because I'd not really worn trousers for about 8 weeks as nothing fitted or had the stretch I now needed. This new freedom of movement was outstanding. And to think, it's just a pair of bloody good jeans?! There's only so many times you can wear long tops out for dinner and just not bother doing up your trousers - but they stay put, all the same. I embraced the elasticated waistband with open arms and a growing tum.

Look! It's not a dress. I have legs.
Also got myself a maternity denim shirt - classic - that seems to have quite the room to grow into. So I imagine that will be a staple item that's a good go-to when I just can't. Be. Arsed. You know how it is sometimes.

The other maternity item that's new to the wardrobe is a simple grey jersey cotton slip dress with knotted detail just on top of the bump/under the boob. Slightly more flattering than the oversize/tent dresses that seem to be everywhere for mamas-to-be. Will most likely layer up or down according to the good ol' British weather. But I'm pleased with my choice.

The next things on my list of maternity wear are the basics. I'm talking tights (because I seemed to forget that the area between the top of my knicker line and belly button would expand, thus making tights SO UNCOMFORTABLE), I'm after a belly band (because my back is making me feel like I'm in my late 80s) and I'm after some new comfortable bras (who said pregnancy wasn't sexy?)

I've decided I'm going to try and do regular #ootd posts on my Instagram. I'm also trying to work out if there's a way I can feed my Instagram into my blog? Either way, there are many a post on there about my pregnancy style and what clothes and fashions I'm enjoying as a blossoming woman (apparently!) so if that interests you, have a look!

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