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Tuesday, 25 September 2012

My Nan Turns 80!

This weekend was a pretty eventful one. My nan turned 80 yesterday and we had planned on spending the weekend in Bridport to celebrate. On the way there on Saturday I started getting contractions, which got worse as we got closer to the farm houses where my nan was due to be staying.

By the time we had arrived, they were three minutes apart and lasting just over a minute. We had no phone signal at the resort and my mum's car had started making awful noises on the journey down the long dirt track there, so we ended up having to call an ambulance! When the ambulance arrived, the paramedic felt my stomach as I was having a contraction and became concerned that I was having such a strong contraction at 32 weeks pregnant.

The first ambulance leaving the farmhouses with me in it

On the dirt track we ended up getting stuck in a cattle grid, which meant having to have another ambulance come to get me and my mum- talk about drama! By this point the contractions had already started slowing down and luckily by the time I reached Dorchester hospital (20 minutes away) they had almost stopped completely. I was hooked up to a monitor and the baby and me were observed before they did a test to see if I was at risk of going into labour properly. Luckily the test came back negative and I was allowed to leave. My aunt came to collect us, telling us about a drama they had whilst we were at the hospital (my aunt nearly got tipped into the water when going for a boat ride!)and we managed to make it back to the resort in time to have fish and chips and watch X Factor with everyone before going back home.

On Sunday I was feeling quite apprehensive after the events of the day before but luckily nothing went wrong and we met up with my nan, aunt and cousins at a lovely little country pub near Bridport where we had a nice meal for my nan's birthday.

After the meal we went back to the resort again and had a group photo and my nan blew out the candles on her (rather amusing looking) 80 birthday cake.

It was lovely being able to spend time with everyone together as it isn't often it happens with people working and living in different areas of the country. My nan had a brilliant time.

On Monday everyone came over ours before going back home and we had another cake and I gave my nan a present I had been making for her over the weekend- a book filled with personal messages from everyone, photos of us all with my nan from over the weekend, and poems about nans that I had found online. She loved it!

I still can't believe how good my nan looks for 80, I hope I look that good when I get to her age!

Monday, 24 September 2012

Pregnancy Diary: 33 Weeks!

What's going on with me this week:

Babycentre says:

"If you're a first-time mum, your baby's head may move into your pelvis this week and press firmly against your cervix. This happens for about half of all first-time mums. If you're a second-time mum, you can expect this to happen a week before labour. For some, this won't happen until the start of labour.

You may notice that your feet and ankles are quite swollen by the end of the day. Water retention, also known as oedema, is often worse in warm weather and late in the day. Surprisingly, keeping hydrated helps reduce water retention. Your body, particularly your kidneys, and your baby need plenty of fluids, so drink up. If you suddenly feel swollen or puffy in your hands or face, however, call your doctor – it may be a sign of pre-eclampsia".

What I feel this week:

I had a big scare on Saturday when I started getting contractions, three minutes apart and lasting a minute at a time. To make things worse I was in Bridport, in the middle of a farm, down a long country track when it happened. An ambulance was called as we had no signal to contact a midwife and the ambulance proceeded to get stuck in a cattle grid along the road! After getting another ambulance to rescue us from the first one, me and my mum were taken to Dorchester maternity unit where I was monitored and examined and eventually allowed to leave after they decided I wasn't in proper labour- thankfully! I have been told to take it easy, but it is pretty hard to do so with a two year old!

I haven't felt too swollen, it's just my tummy that is massive from all the extra fluid, which does get me down but I am trying to forget about it for now. I have my next scan and consultant appointment booked in for 36 weeks, with a health visitor and midwife appointment at 34 weeks. Everything does seem to be going faster now. It won't be long before my little girl is here!

What's going on with my baby this week:

Babycentre says:

"Your baby now weighs about 2kg and measures up to 44cm from head to toe. She may already be getting ready for birth by turning upside-down. Her head should be pointing down, ready for her journey into the world.
Your doctor or midwife will be paying careful attention to your baby's position in the coming weeks. Some babies do decide to turn back round again.

Your baby's skull is still quite pliable. The plates of bone that make up her skull have not completely fused. This is so she can ease out of the relatively narrow birth canal, the passage between your cervix and the opening of your vagina. But the bones in the rest of her body are hardening. Your baby's skin is also gradually becoming less red and wrinkled as fat builds up underneath".

What my baby looks like inside this week:

What my bump looks like this week:

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Cameron is Growing Up

I can't believe how fast Cameron is growing up lately. Having just turned two and with only a couple of months left until we meet his baby sister, I decided it was high time that Cameron started going to nursery. As I am not working, I don't need him to be at nursery, but want him to go to help his social skills and so that when he does need to go full time, it isn't such a shock to the system.

Cameron has his first settling in session this afternoon, just for an hour, and then has two hours next Tuesday before starting one afternoon from next Thursday! Looking round the nursery, Cameron loved it instantly and didn't take long making friends so I am not worried about how he will settle. I'm more concerned about how I will be letting him go off, especially with my hormones the way they are at the moment!

Monday, 17 September 2012

My Baby Shower!

I love baby showers (so much so that I am now thinking of basing my events business around them), so although not traditional, I knew I would be holding my own rather than allowing a friend or family member to do so on my behalf. Last time everything was blue, so as soon as I had the 100% confirmation that I am having a baby girl, I set about making sure everything was pink!

On Sunday I celebrated at home with close friends and family and loved every minute of it. Baby showers aren't about getting as many presents as you can, they are about celebrating the impending birth of your child with those who matter the most to you. I am a traditionalist in the sense that I wanted it to be just girls, so Tim stayed out of the way at his flat and we had a very girly afternoon of cake, funny party games and even some pink champagne (though this was just for the guests).

Favours <3

Pink Fizz!

Pink Food!

I did get some lovely gifts from my friends, which I am very grateful for.

 I also loved seeing some friends I hadn't seen in a long time. It made things seem a lot closer than before as well as I realised I only had eight weeks left of the pregnancy! I can't wait to meet my baby girl now!

Cameron turns 2!

This week has been quite a busy one. On Thursday my not so little man turned two. Makes me feel extremely old! My fiance had booked the day off work so that we could go out as a family together and I decided to take Cameron to Farmer Palmers, a local farm/kids attraction as he loves animals at the moment. It was a pretty hot day for once on Thursday and after a morning of opening lots of presents from myself and his great nan and a brief pit-stop to enrol him in nursery (a story for another post), we drove to the farm with a picnic.

Cameron absolutely loved the farm and said hello to each animal and then bye to them as well. He also loved going on the go-karts, the bouncy castle, the ride-on tractor toys and in the swing park.

I was feeling very heavily pregnant and the heat made me sleepy so I spent most of the time sitting down and taking it easy, luckily Tim was there too and made sure Cameron had a great time.

On Friday Cameron spent the day with his dad which was nice for him and gave me the chance to go food shopping and get all the bits for his party on Saturday, as well as my baby shower on Sunday.

Cameron's party wasn't as big as it was originally going to be as a lot of people let me down at last minute, but it was really lovely and Cameron had a great time playing with his second cousin Spencer and seeing friends and family. The theme was In the Night Garden which is Cameron's latest obsession, and although I didn't put as much effort into the cake as I did last time, I still thought it looked alright....

Cameron got lots of lovely gifts and really seemed to enjoy himself. I still can't believe he is two, or that in 8 weeks I will have two children, how scary! I love my (not so) little man so much!

Pregnancy Diary: 32 Weeks!

What's going on with me this week:

Babycentre says:

"You're probably gaining 450g a week, largely because your baby is likely to gain more than half his birthweight during the seven weeks before birth. Make sure you are eating well in these last few weeks.

Your bump 
will be getting quite big now, and you may find it attracts a lot of attention!"
What I feel this week:

I am starting to gain weight quicker than I was. I have reached the dreaded 11 stone mark (I weighed 9 stone 4 prior to getting pregnant second time round), which I am finding a little hard after losing so much weight once I'd had Cameron. I just keep reminding myself that I am gaining weight because of the baby I am growing and I can and will lose it again once she is born. My bump is massive and I definitely notice people staring every so often. I don't overly enjoy pregnancy but I do think I might miss my bump when it is gone! I had my 32 week antenatal check up with my doctor this morning which I didn't overly like as my doctor is an oldish man and didn't seem to have much experience with doing antenatal checks. I have my next consultant appointment on wednesday this week though, where I will have another growth scan to check the fluid levels so that will hopefully be able to put my mind at rest a bit.

What's going on with my baby this week:

Babycentre says:

"Your baby now weighs about 1.7kg and is around 42cm long from head to toe. Although his lungs won't be fully developed until just before birth, your little one is busy inhaling amniotic fluid to exercise his lungs. From 32 weeks, babies born early have good chance of surviving and thriving. His skin is becoming soft and smooth as he plumps up in preparation for birth.
Some babies have a head of hair already, others have only a few wisps. Thick hair at birth doesn't necessarily mean thick hair later on. But children with fine hair in childhood also tend to have fine hair when they've grown up".
What my baby looks like inside this week:

What my bump looks like this week:

Monday, 10 September 2012

Pregnancy Diary: 31 Weeks!

What's going on with me this week:

Babycentre says:

"You've probably gained weight this month, somewhere between 1.3kg and 1.8kg. Gaining 450g a week is quite normal during the last trimester as your baby has a final growth spurt before he arrives in the world".

What I feel this week:

I have been weighing myself every so often, mainly when I am having a 'fat day' and feel the need to know just how much weight I have actually gained. Luckily, despite the raised fluid levels, I haven't been gaining too much weight. I have had a pretty hectic week with a consultant appointment on Wednesday which then led to glucose blood tests on Thursday. They have fortunately been able to rule out gestational diabetes as a cause for my raised fluid levels, but I am still awaiting results on a blood test for possible infection. If that comes back clear as well then there is no apparent cause for the raised levels. I have another appointment with my consultant booked for next week as well as another scan to check growth etc. I am trying to relax and forget about everything in the meantime. On Wednesday evening I had my firstg antenatal class which, although I already knew most of the stuff they covered, was good fun and allowed me to feel closer to the birth and meeting my baby! I have one more class this week and then a couple of relaxation classes in mid October when I will be approaching full term, exciting!

What's going on with my baby this week:

Babycentre says:

"Your baby weighs about 1.5kg and looks more than ever like a newborn. He measures about 41cm from crown to toe. His arms, legs and body continue to fill out – and they are finally proportional in size to his head.
You may notice your baby isn't moving around as much. That's because he's just running out of space in your uterus (womb). As long as you can feel him squirming and kicking, you'll know he's just fine. Believe it or not, he still has plenty of growing to do. You can expect him to gain at least 900g before birth.
Your baby's organs are continuing to mature and he is passing water from his bladder, which is good practice for the weeing he'll do after he's born. Also, the marrow in his bones has taken over from his liver the job of producing red blood cells".

What my baby looks like inside this week:

What my bump looks like this week:

Only 9 weeks to go!

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Planning my Wedding: Finding the Venue

Ok, so I know I said that the next post on wedding planning would be on DIY planning ideas but I had to push that aside for the moment to announce that I have found our wedding venue!

It was totally by accident that I came across it. I had never heard of the venue before but at a wedding fayre last week I heard about another fayre this weekend at the house, which is located just outside of nearby Wimborne (about a fifteen minute drive from where I live).

Arriving at the venue I noticed how lovely the house looked, it is a georgian country manor with a rolling lawn in the front and back. I didn't consider it as a venue really until I came to their stand inside the fayre, which is when I noticed how amazing their prices were. Unlike most other venues I have come across online, the house actually allows you to hire just the room, without forcing you to also have an expensive sit down meal. This, and the fact that it was a country manor in our price range, made my mind up. Neither me nor Tim enjoy the idea of having a big lavish, heavy sit down meal with all the wedding guests. Instead we are planning to have the ceremony, then break for a bit where we can have a meal with just our close family, before everyone joining us for a big celebration in the evening.

I asked for a tour around the house and discussed the details with one of the event managers from the venue. I also arranged a viewing for next week with Tim, to make sure he likes the venue too before hopefully booking it for February 2014!

I shouldn't really be surprised that I found my venue so quickly. I have always been quite impulsive with my decision making. When I know I like something I must have it as soon as possible.

I am so excited now that we have our venue. With a venue booked, I can begin planning more and it all becomes so much more real! Exciting times!

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

My 4D Private Bonding Scan Experience

In my last pregnancy I really, really wanted to have a 4d scan, after seeing photos of a friend's. There was no way I could afford it, which was disappointing. This time round I knew early on that I wanted to make sure I could have a scan with this baby and luckily my fiance very kindly said he would pay for the scan, which we booked just after our 20 week NHS scan for when I was 29 weeks and 5 days pregnant. This was just within the time frame for best results, and also gave us a scan in between the 20 week one and my due date. I shopped around online for the best deals with private scan clinics and we opted for Babybond, our local clinic being 40 minutes away in Southampton.

On the day of the scan I was so excited, but this was kind of overcome by nerves. I had a scare over the weekend after a massage where the women pressed on pressure points that could have triggered early labour, so the scan came at a good time to reassure me that everything was ok but made me extra nervous beforehand. I was also convinced that we would go into the scan and be told that we were having a boy, not the 95% girl we had been shown at our 20 week scan. Although I would have gotten around to the idea and obviously loved a boy just as much as a girl, it would have been so frustrating to have to take back the piles of clothes and pink accessories I have slowly been buying over the last ten weeks!

just some of the baby clothes I have accumulated over the last 10 weeks!

We got to the scan clinic 40 minutes early as I always allow for things to go wrong and traffic, but we were shown into the waiting room which was lovely, filled with magazines, a snack table along with plenty of hot and cold drink options and a play area for young children (making me realise I could of taken Cameron after all!). It was a totally different experience to an NHS scan, as you would expect for the money you are paying. I was made to feel really welcomed by the sonographer, who came and talked with us a bit before setting up. We were shown into the scan room which was really relaxing with soft music playing in the background. There was a massive screen for us to view the scan on, and the bed I was laying on was so comfy I could have fallen asleep on it!

First of all we were told about what the scan would involve and asked whether we wanted to know the sex. I was assured that they would be able to confirm the sex later on in the scan but to begin with we had the '4D' element of the scan, looking at the baby's face from different angles and seeing her smile and move her hands in front of her face etc. I couldn't believe how clear the scan was!

My little baby girl!


It was such an amazing experience and one I will never forget. I think she looks just like Cameron, which will be lovely! I am really excited to meet her now I have had this scan. After this we then switched to a 2d scan and the sonographer looked over all the vitals to check everything was ok and then took some measurements where she was able to tell us that the baby currently weighs 3.5 pounds with an estimated birth weight of 7.5 pounds. She also had a look for the gender and showed us exactly where everything was and said that she could say 100% that we are having a baby girl, which was a huge relief and put a massive smile on my face.

The scan continued for a bit and sadly she did find that my fluid levels are abnormally high for my gestation, which could mean a difficult and monitored birth. For now not much can be done, apart from seeing a consultant, which I am doing tomorrow, and possibly regular growth scans to check the baby is growing well and not distressed by the fluid, and to see if the fluid is increasing. I am pretty worried by it all but trying to take comfort in the fact that the baby is nice and healthy and is the right size etc.

For anyone thinking about having a 4d scan I would highly recommend it. For me it was an amazing experience and one I will never forget. For £139 we got a relaxed, friendly atmosphere for our 45 minute long scan, we came away with lots of black and white images from the 4d and 2d scans as well as our chosen image in colour. We also got a recording of the 4d section of the scan, complete with the relaxing music we heard during the scan. It might seem expensive, but for that reassurance that everything is going ok in between the 20 week scan and the birth, as well as a chance to get a sneak peek of what the baby is going to look like, I think it is more than worth it and I will definitely have a 4d scan if I have more kids in the future.

Pregnancy Diary: 30 Weeks!

What's going on with me this week:

Babycentre says:

"About a litre of amniotic fluid now surrounds your baby, but that volume decreases as she gets bigger and has less room in your uterus. As you and your baby continue to grow, don't be alarmed if you feel breathless, as if you can't get enough air. It's just your uterus pressing against your diaphragm.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel, though. At about 34 weeks (or just before birth, if this is your second or third pregnancy), your baby's head will move down into your pelvis as she gets into the right position for birth. That will make breathing and eating a lot easier.

Still thinking about where to have your baby? Check out our guide to your birth choices. Wherever you plan to have your baby, why not start thinking about what you'll need to pack in your bag ready for when you go into labour?"

What I feel this week:

It's ironic that Babycentre talks about fluid levels this week as I have just found out that I have abnormally high levels, which means I will be monitored closely for the remainder of my pregnancy. They only discovered the high levels because of a private scan that I had at the weekend (which was amazing, but more on that in another post). The private clinic phoned through to my hospital and I had an NHS scan booked to double check. I am now awaiting an appointment with a consultant. It is worrying, but at least if anything gets worse they will find out quickly through the monitoring. I finally allowed myself to pack my birth bags last night. I have had a list of what I needed to pack written since sixteen weeks and I have been slowly buying things for it over the last couple of months. I am so excited now I have packed the bags as it makes it all much more real. I still feel like ten weeks is a long time to wait, but knowing I won't go any more than 12 weeks, and that I am full term in just 7 weeks is pretty amazing! I have lots planned during September including Cameron's 2nd birthday next week, my baby shower, my antenatal classes starting and my nan's 80th birthday so that should make the next four weeks go quickly at least!

What's going on with my baby this week:

Babycentre says:

"Your baby now measures a little more than 39cm from crown to toe. Her growth in terms of her length will soon slow down but she will continue to gain weight until she's born. She probably weighs about 1.3kg at this stage.
Your baby's lungs and digestive tract are almost fully developed. She continues to open and shut her eyes. She can probably see what's going on inside your uterus (womb), tell light from dark and even track a light source. If you shine a light on your stomach, your baby may move her head to follow the light or even reach out to touch the moving glow.

Some researchers think baring your stomach to light stimulates visual development. But your baby won't be able to see much when she's born. Newborns can see a distance of only between 20cm and 30cm. Children with normal vision don't reach 20/20 vision (the same as an adult) until the age of about eight. To complete the picture, your baby now has eyebrows and can bat her eyelashes!"

What my baby looks like inside this week:

What my bump looks like this week:

Finally into the 30's! And at least I now know why my bump is quite big!
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