Friday, 31 July 2015

Pregnancy Blog: Week 25

Luckily, week 25 has been quite uneventful and I've had no further catastrophes in pregnancy yoga! I must say, I've felt much better knowing I don't have to go ever again! I've felt OK in myself this week, but I still have days where I feel exhausted and then days when I have more energy.  

I've had a niggling pain right under my ribs all week which gets worse whenever I eat, so that's pretty much all of the time! I think it's either baby lying in a funny position, or as I've read in a pregnancy book, it could be due to my ribs expanding which sounds pretty impressive!

Baby is now the size of a rutabaga if you are interested...which when I Google imaged a rutabaga, looks strangely similar to a swede! 
I was in need of some new maternity clothes, and I'm applying the term 'need' loosely here, as the dresses that I had been wearing are now too tight and uncomfortable, and there are only so many times I want to wear a maxi dress!  I popped into Warehouse and found some lovely tops in the sale.  Even though Warehouse don't have a maternity line, I find sizing up the tops works as they tend to be a really nice length and fit over my bump.  The top in the picture was £16 and I got it in a size 16.  I thought when it gets a bit cooler I can wear a chunky cardigan over the top.  

I popped into Topshop and tried a few things on in their maternity range, but I found a few of the dresses to be really short which was a bit disappointing.  I don't think they sometimes account for the amount of fabric it takes to cover the bump and this hitches alot of the hemlines up even more! I ended up buying a pair of Leigh maternity jeans which are super comfy.  

Don't be fooled by the photo above either.  I've got sunglasses on because all my eye make-up had smudged as I had been running around the park after my daughter all afternoon.  I was exhausted and I think I might be starting with a cold too.  Minutes after this photo was taken, my hair was in a bun, I'd taken my make-up off and got into my pj's.  It's glamour all the way here folks...and here's the proof!

Have a lovely weekend! 

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Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Maybelline Master Glaze: Review

Up until pretty recently I had never tried a cream blusher in my life. I thought they would transfer way too easily from my skin and would disappear after about 30 minutes of wearing of them.  However, I tried Soap and Glory's Sexy Mother Blusher and I haven't looked back.  I am now addicted to a cream blush. 

When I was in America, I picked up Maybelline's Master Glaze Blush Stick in Just Pinched Pink, and this stuff is amazing.  I haven't seen it in UK stores yet, but if you see this, definitely pick one up. I have seen them online though, so if you're desperate to get your hands on one give it a Google. 

The Just Pinched pink shade looks very pink and I did wonder when I first picked it up if I had gone a little too pink, but once on the skin the shade is gorgeous.  It's thick and creamy, amazingly pigmented and really easy to apply and blend.  You can go for quite a dramatic look or blend it out for a more natural shade which is what I do.   The staying power is amazing and even on a day when my skin might get a little sweaty, this blush sticks around. 

For around £7 this puts my other powder blushes to shame and its perfect for the Summer months to give your skin that dewy glow.  
What are your thoughts on cream blushers...would you give them a go? 

Thanks for reading, 

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Monday, 27 July 2015

An afternoon Strawberry Picking

Last Sunday as the sun shone, we donned our straw hats and headed to Scaddows Farm in Ticknall, Derbyshire for a spot of strawberry picking. I had never been strawberry picking before, but I had heard rumours that this year was a good year for strawberries, and never one to miss out, we had to go and see for ourselves. 

We arrived at Scaddows Farm to a huge field full of strawberry plants and eager pickers. We collected a punnet box from a van at the top of the field, and then that was it, we were set loose in this enormous strawberry filled field to collect strawberries to our hearts content! 

Even though there were lots of people there, as the field was so so big and there were strawberries as far as the eye could see, there was lots of good spots and space to start picking.  My husband had a good technique of rummaging in the middle of the plants to find the big ones, so me and my daughter left him to it and chased each other up and down trying to find who could pick the biggest strawberry. My daughter may or may not have eaten more than she was giving me (sorry Scaddows).  

After we had filled our box, we headed back to the van where they weighed our strawberry treasure.  I think for the punnet it cost us just under £2, which is a complete bargain, alot cheaper than the shops and much more fun. 

There was a little farm shop too at the top of the farm selling food, drinks and delicious cakes, but I will have to return to try this out. Strawberry picking is something that is so simple, but was such a lovely family afternoon out.  I highly recommend it, and don't strawberries just taste nicer when you have picked them yourself?

Thanks for reading, 

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Friday, 24 July 2015

Pregnancy Blog : Week 24

Hello week 24! It's been quite an interesting week this week as I started a new class of pregnancy yoga that I will never go to ever again, but I will come onto that little drama in a minute.  Let's talk about bump first.  

Health wise I've felt OK this week. It seems I have some days where I have loads of energy, and then some days I feel like I really haven't the energy to do much at all.  But I'm just going with the flow and making good use of the good days.  I've managed to strip the old nursery wallpaper and get some paint samples and the room is slowly starting to take shape (I think).  I still have to sand the walls and then wash them which is my least favourite bit, and I have a feeling I will have to dig deep to find the energy to do that!!!

Baby seems to like doing alot of rolls and he or she also likes to rest a limb poking directly under my ribcage.  I've been really uncomfortable under my right side for the last few days, so if baby could just move its arm or leg down a little bit, it would be much appreciated!!

This week I decided to try out a new pregnancy yoga class. I first did pregnancy yoga when I was pregnant with my daughter and I loved it.  I found it really relaxing and I even made a few friends at the class. Unfortunately, the lady who ran the classes doesn't any more, so hence why this was a completely new class. 

I walked into this medium sized room and was greeted with about 25 pairs of eyes looking at me!  The instructor seemed nice enough though, and she told me to take a seat on my mat where there was a space.  Immediately I got the vibes that everyone sat in the same place every week, and the only space left for me was up wedged by a cupboard.  Not exactly the most relaxing place to attempt yoga. 

We did some basic yoga moves and then we were asked to lie on our backs and do some sort of thrusting motion raising up and down.  Now, I might not be that up-to-date with current advice, but last time I checked it was a big no-no to lie on your back.  Yet here I was on my back.  

I really wish I had had the courage to sit up and say I wasn't doing the exercises as I wasn't comfortable.  But I'm ashamed to say with the twenty or so other women, I just couldn't. Even if they were safe, it was ingrained in my mind that I didn't want to be lying on my back, so the whole time I was thinking, 'oh my god I'm killing my baby', and then I'd keep rolling onto my side as though I was secretly resuscitating baby and giving him or her a few good breaths.  

We did some more yoga moves, and I managed to stop hyperventilating that I'd suffocated my baby, as Baby Bee gave some good wiggles.  But then, dum dum dum, group work!! 

We were split into groups and we had to talk about some photographs of babies that were handed out. Now each to their own, and I'm not judging the other women that were there. But me? I really can't be bothered to sit and chit-chat about babies with ladies I don't know and I certainly don't want a new BFF.  One woman gave her gory labour story, another slagged off health professionals, one lady was very vocal about EVERYTHING and me? I didn't say a word.  (I think they all thought I was very stuck up).  

The truth is, group work really isn't my thing.  And after the lying on my back debacle, I just wanted to get home, see my husband and eat my tea.  I came home anxious not only about the yoga poses, but also wondering if I was normal.  Surely I should want to talk to other mums to be? What if I end up with no friends with a baby that's a similar age to mine? What if I get lonely? What's wrong with me?  

As usual a chat to my mum reassured me.  Why was I trying to be someone I'm not? Why was I being so hard on myself? And quite frankly who cares about group work and a bloody yoga group.  Life's way too short. 

Sometimes we are so set on being like everybody else, that when we feel something different we worry there's something wrong with us.  But I can't be someone I'm not.  If I didn't like it, I didn't like it.  And I'm not at school.  So if instead of doing group work with a bunch of strangers I'd rather be bouncing on my maternity ball eating chocolate, then so be it.  I am who I am. 

I have lots of lovely friends who will support me.  And come to think of it, I've only got one new friend who I met antenatally, and the rest are old friends or new people I met along the way after I had had my daughter. 

Needless to say I won't be returning to that group, but I certainly wouldn't judge those that do go.  If that's your thing, go for it.  But for me, I want to be lying on my side, and the only group work I want to be doing is with my husband trying to catch our daughter ready for bath time.  

Thanks for reading, and would love to hear your thoughts.  Anything similar happen to you? Do you like a spot of group-work?  Comments below please!  

Have a great weekend,  

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Wednesday, 22 July 2015

An app for pregnancy, Preggie : Review

There's nothing more helpful than a good old app when you are pregnant to give you the all important information on how baby is progressing, what size of fruit or vegetable he or she is and where you can ask, without looking like a total idiot, if you really can eat that cheesecake (though cheesecake-gate is another blog post entirely which you can catch up on here).  I was asked to take a look at a new app called Preggie, which lets you do all of the above and a little bit more. 

Preggie is a free and simple to use app. You download it to your preferred device, then fill in a few details, such as your name, when is baby due and you set up a profile of yourself. 

After you've filled in your information, you immediately get a feed from other pregnant ladies across the country.  Other users upload pictures, questions, status updates and how their pregnancy is progressing.  You can then interact by liking posts, adding your thoughts to threads, uploading your own thoughts and pictures, sending direct messages and following specific users.  

What immediately struck me is the supportive nature of the ladies on the app and the ability to access the app to chat or vent or share a problem, whatever the time of day or night, and be met with supportive comments.  

By including the are where you live, Preggie also let's you connect with women in your local area. Pregnancy can be quite overwhelming and daunting, and I think to know that others feel the same way as you do is very reassuring. I think the location feature of this app is perfect for any pregnant mums who want to find other pregnant mums in their area, want to make new friends, know what groups might be nearby, or even want to compare bump pictures (I'm totally guilty of sneakily comparing bump sizes!!!).

As Preggie is just for pregnant mums to be, you know you aren't spamming your Facebook timeline or asking people questions who really aren't interested about your pregnancy. Everyone is in the same boat, and that's what is so special about this app.  You also receive updates about your pregnancy, and my baby is the size of a corn today if you are interested! 

With any type of social media, you need to be aware of the information you share and apply common sense.  Preggie is strongly monitored which results in a very supportive community for mums-to-be during their pregnancy. 

To try this lovely free app, click on this link to download: Preggie 

Thanks for reading, 

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Preggie asked me to try their app and the above downloadable link is an affiliate link. All opinions are entirely my own and I think Preggie is a lovely little app that is definitely worth taking a look at. 

Monday, 20 July 2015

A Meditation On Murder by Robert Thorogood : A review

I was very kindly sent the book, A Meditation On Murder, by Mumsnet bloggers to review. For the first time, as I unwrapped my brand new book, my heart sank.  The book's characters are based on the hit TV series, Death in Paradise, and this brand new story is written by the show's creator, Robert Thorogood. I can vaguely remember the TV series on the BBC, but I never, ever watched it as I didn't think it really appealed to me.  So, when I looked down at my shiny new book I thought this time, I'd have to write a bad review. The last few murder novels I've read have involved alot of violence, very creepy killers and a very fast paced plot. Would a book about a detective in a wool suit and a murder on a tropical island even hold my attention to finish reading it? YES, YES and YES!!!!!

I don't think I could have been more wrong about this novel.  It is such an amazing read. Thorogood is clearly a very talented writer and I was hooked after the very first page. Just who had killed Aslan Kennedy in a locked room with only five other people in it? 

I loved the characters and even though I'd never watched the TV series, the characters were brought to life. The writer beautifully entwines the murder plot and the idiosyncrasies of the characters, and I literally couldn't put the book down. There certainly wasn't the violence and the swearing and gore of my recent murder book reads, but that really didn't matter. This book held my attention and kept me turning the pages without all of that.  The plot twists and turns, and the moment you think you've worked it all out, is the very moment Thorogood completely changes the way the story is going.   

This book is a must Summer read.  If you loved the TV series you will love this book. But, similarly, if you weren't even interested in the TV series or never watched it, you will love this book. Very cleverly written, comical, and a page turner. You won't be able to put this book down until you find out exactly what went on in that locked room...and it really won't be what you imagined. 

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Mumsnet Bloggers kindly sent me this book for review, but all opinions are my own and I absolutely loved this book!

Friday, 17 July 2015

Pregnancy Blog : Week 23

This is the week that panic mode has set in.  For some reason, I now feel the need to get EVERYTHING ready for baby...even though I have at least another 16 weeks left.  I have a very very long to do list in my head, which involves random things like scrubbing all kitchen cupboards (which is of course essential for bringing a new baby home) and more realistic things like decorating the nursery and buying baby gro's. 

My parents came to visit this week and were met with a house in utter chaos as I was attempting to empty the old nursery of clutter and bits and bobs, so I could begin to strip the walls and paint.  But, as is the rule with tidying up, I couldn't just clear the clutter out.  Because then some of the things needed to go in other rooms, and then for it to go in other rooms I had to sort those other rooms out too to make space...and so on and so forth.  I ended up clearing my whole wardrobe, my daughters wardrobe and the office on top of the nursery.  Phew!

But enough about my madness of preparing for baby, and onto pregnancy things.  At the start of the week I was feeling really tired, and one night I was in bed for 8pm. I was completely exhausted, but I could still hear my daughter singing away in her bedroom so my three year old was up later than me!!! I also have had pains around my lower back and on top of one of my thighs.  However, for the last few days I've felt loads better and have had much more energy.  

The yoga class that I've previously mentioned...I still haven't been, but I'm going next week so will update you as to how I get on.  Baby has been very active and my daughter even put her hand on my tummy and I explained to her it was her baby brother or sister kicking! She had a huge smile on her face, so that was a really special moment.  

My bump is getting big now and I keep knocking it when I'm trying to wash up or lean over things. I also can't see the underside of it now unless I really crane my neck! My belly button is definitely getting shallower too, so all in all lots of bump growth! 

I feel like this pregnancy is going really quickly this time round, and I wonder if that is why I'm eager to get everything sorted.  It's one of those strange facts that things you want to really last go by so so quickly, but hey, I guess that's life, and I'm just enjoying every day of this special pregnancy. 

Thanks for reading and have a lovely weekend, 

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Thursday, 16 July 2015

Money for nothing...why you need TopCashback

I thought everyone knew about cash back sites and how they work, but after speaking to my Dad recently who was oblivious to these sites, I thought I would do a quick blog post about them, because they are amazing!!! Also I should put a little disclaimer, this is not a sponsored post...I'm just sharing a site that I genuinely think is fantastic!  

First of all, when someone says you can earn money, you immediately think that you need to deliver 5,000 pamphlets, or make some sales calls.  But, earning cash on your online purchases is literally a way of retailers trying to get your business by offering cash back on purchases.  There are a few top cash back sites to choose from, but my favourite, and one that I've used for several years now is TopCashback.

All you have to do is sign up to TopCashback and fill in a few of your details, and then you are all set.  So, let's say for instance you want to buy a new perfume from Boots. You log in to your TopCashback account, search for Boots in their retailer search box, and then the website automatically takes you to the Boots website where you purchase your perfume as you would normally do.  You don't pay any differently, you still use your Boots account. All that has happened is by clicking on TopCashback first, they have logged your visit, and then you get a small percentage when your order goes through. 

The current cash back on Boots fragrance is 5%, so if your perfume was £50, that's £2.50 you've earned. This money gets put into your account once the sale has been completed. You can then have the money put into your bank account. It really is that simple. 

Not all online shops are on the site, but its always worth checking. They have shops, insurance, travel, hotels. Last month, I earned £8 for booking a train and £40 for making a Hilton hotel booking.  Not bad simply for going through another website first.  There are always different deals on, so some weeks you can earn a higher percentage of cash back.  

Now it's not hundreds of pounds that you earn each time, but it certainly adds up, and you are getting money for just buying what you were going to buy anyway.  It's such a good idea, and retailers benefit from these sites, because if they offer higher cash back than competitors, then you are more likely to order your purchases from them. 

It's really simple to use and the website is simple to understand.  And getting paid to do your shopping? What better bonus is there? 
You're welcome :-) 

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Tuesday, 14 July 2015

A Paddington Bear Party

Earlier this month, my daughter turned three years old and never one to turn down the chance to challenge myself and throw a good party, my daughter and I came up with a Paddington Bear birthday theme.  I have to admit, I had already rejected her idea of a Daddy themed birthday party as I couldn't quite figure out how that would go (!), so Paddington it was. I thought I'd write a post about how I did our DIY Paddington Bear party, from the cake, the food and the games to the all important goody bags.

First stop...decorations
I bought alot of Paddington themed party decorations and table ware from the Childrens Party Shop online.  I found their prices to be the cheapest online and the delivery was really quick too. I bought banners, Paddington Bear little red party hats, the cake topper, a bear sandwich cutter and a few other bits for the party bags from them.  

We also bought a helium balloon for each child and attached it to their chair at the table...which was a big hit! I got these from The Card Factory as they were alot cheaper than some other shops. 

Drum roll please..the Cake
You really can find anything on YouTube, and I found this amazing tutorial on how to make a Paddington Bear cake.  This was shortly after I had Googled a cake and found the one I liked would be £160!!!! Always up for a challenge, I set to work! 

Now, I'm not a great cook, and there was always that disaster with the carrot cake, but, I can make a simple sponge and I thought I could wing the rest.  Yes, it was a bit fiddly, and it did take me the best part of a day to do with the cooking of the sponges too, but I absolutely LOVED doing it, and I think it turned out OK for a novice. (Obviously I made all guests admire it before cutting it). Ta dah! 

We hired a party package from a nearby leisure centre, and for the first hour of the party the children played on a bouncy castle and soft play toys, and then for the second hour we had another room where they sat and ate tea and then played a few games.  No catering was included so that meant I had to make all of the sandwiches.  

I decided to do lunch-boxes for each child, and before the party I had asked parents if their child would like cheese, ham or cheese spread sandwiches.  I then bought a cheap cookie cutter in the shape of a bear (from the party shop) and cut out the sandwiches.  I placed these in the lunch-boxes along with a yoghurt, bag of carrot crisps and a fruit bar. The children seemed to love the lunch-boxes and there was very little waste as the children eagerly ate their individual portions.

I bought the lunch boxes from Amazon, and then I made name tags using luggage labels.  I then hand stamped the name of each child, printed out a Googled image of Paddington and glued it onto the tags and fastened to each box with wool.

For the adults, I did three types of sandwiches: cream cheese and cucumber, chicken salad and ham and mustard.  I found the three platters I did were enough to feed the parents of 13 children and a few extra family members. I also got crisps, dips and a selection of dipppers, and then some sweet treats.  I never know how much food to make for parties, so I hope this gives you an idea of what to prepare! 

We had to be quite inventive with the games and we roped in my mum to help organise the children which she loved!!  We thought we would do games so the children didn't just eat and leave, and by then they were all pretty relaxed so everyone wanted to join in.  

I bought a pack of medals from the pound shop to give to each of the children as prizes, and then little boxes of raisins that they picked out from a tin too.  

We printed out a huge picture of Paddington Bear and the children had to pin a hat on his head.  We then did old fashioned throwing a beanbag in a hula-hoop which as simple as it sounds, the children loved! And we also had an egg and spoon race.

Party Bags
We had quite an age range for the party bags, so I split the bags into ones for the very young and then the older children.  I couldn't find any nice Paddington Bear party bags, so I made my own.  I ordered plain white bags from Amazon, and then I Googled an image of Paddington.  I then printed the picture onto some parcel paper, ripped around the image and glued it to the bag.  I then used luggage tags and stamped 'thank you', and then I stamped each child's name onto the bag. 

For the older children, treats included, Play-doh pots (which you can buy cheaply in multi-packs), a little book (again, I'd bought a multi-pack and split the books), chocolate, a pack off snap cards, and some Paddington stationery. 

For the younger children, they had a finger puppet (part of a multi-pack I'd sepearted), a toy bath boat and a little book. I also popped a slice of cake into each goodie bag. 

My daughter LOVED the party and all of her friends did too.  You might read this and think I'm absolutely mad doing all of the above, but I loved doing it and there is quite some satisfaction knowing you've done all the little finishing touches. When my daughter is 18 and doesn't want me anywhere near her birthday celebrations, I know I will look back on our Paddington Party with fondness, alot of sweat and tears, but lots of love. 

Thanks for reading,

Saturday, 11 July 2015

Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess Eau Fraiche : Review

I read somewhere that if you wear your favourite perfume and people have never commented on the fact that it smell's nice on you, then you still haven't found your signature scent.  Now, I don't need much of an excuse to go perfume shopping, but with the horror that my signature scent is still on a shelf somewhere, I leapt into action.  Well, not literally, let's just say I made a mental note to hit the perfume aisle when I next went shopping!

I had heard good reviews about Estee Lauder's Bronze Goddess perfume, and the lady lounged next to a pool looking particularity bronzed and goddess like on the advertisement, was enough to draw me in.  

This scent is just beautiful. It's an Eau Fraiche, and I won't pretend I knew what this meant, which is apparently quite a dilute perfume.  Which is good news for me as I am not a fan of heavy perfumes.  But that's not to say you can't smell it.  The lightness of the scent means that you can spray away to your heart's content without smelling like you've bathed in the stuff.

This perfume basically smells of holidays and sunshine.  In fact, it's a holiday bottled. The description of this perfume lists the ingredients as bergamot, warm amber, tiare flower, vanilla and coconut. Whilst it is quite sweet smelling, it's certainly not sickly or smells like it belongs on a teenager.  My husband even commented that he liked the smell of it on me, and that my friends, is enough of a result for me. Summer in a bottle.  Sorted.  

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Friday, 10 July 2015

Pregnancy Blog : Week 22

I'm now 22 weeks and I keep thinking that I'm past the half-way point! Sometimes that makes me feel happy, that, in the not too distant future I will get to meet Baby Bee. But sometimes, it makes me feel a little sad, as there is only 18 weeks left of my pregnancy. I know that may sound bizarre, as I suffered so much with my BFF, morning sickness, but I just think pregnancy is so special and I feel so lucky to have the chance to experience it again, that I kind of don't want it to go by too quickly. I want to enjoy every week.  Not that I want this pregnancy to last forever, but I'm excited just to be pregnant, not to mention the amazing part of having a baby at the end of it. 

It's been such a busy week as my daughter has now turned three!! We threw a Paddington Bear party for her on the weekend and to say I'd planned ahead would be an understatement. This party was executed with military precision! She really enjoyed herself and everything went to plan. If you are interested, there will be an upcoming blog on how to throw a Paddington Bear party, from the party bags, games to a home-made cake! 

The down side to all of this toddler partying was that for the following two days after the party, I felt like I had the worst hangover ever, though a drop of alcohol never even passed my lips.  I think it was my body's way of telling me to slow down a little. After a VERY early night, I've felt much better since. 

I also keep managing to somehow bend in the middle of my bump, as it's not huge yet, I forget it's there and then find I've strained myself when I bend down.  I'm sure the baby must be wondering what the hell I'm doing.  I also find it uncomfortable to sit on some chairs and on the sofa too, I feel like a pair of legs suddenly appears just below my ribcage. I've had some pains in my lower back which I can't remember from the first time round.  I guess everything is stretching and moving around, but I thought it was too early in my pregnancy for all of this malarkey? And surely my body has already stretched once so know's what to do? I also have replaced morning sickness with heartburn, so I've bought the biggest bottle of Gaviscon that is so big it looks like I bought it from a joke shop. 

I'm sure I'm making my pregnancy sound very glamorous, but I am absolutely loving it! I've already made lots of lists as to things I need to do before baby arrives and I'm already planning a big spring clean. Whilst we do have most of the things we need for baby, that hasn't stopped me drooling over a pram today! It was also in the sale! But I resisted...for now!

Sorry that its been a little bit quiet on the blog front too. I find I can't blog when I've lots of things to do and I'm not relaxed, and today is the first day I've felt able to type what's going on in my little pregnant head! 

I have a great post tomorrow about the Summer perfume that you need in your life, so be sure to pop back then! 

Thanks for reading and have a great weekend, 

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Friday, 3 July 2015

Pregnancy Blog : Week 21

This week has been a quiet week really compared to the excitement and nervousness of last week's 20 week scan.  Baby has been moving alot more, and on Thursday morning baby had hiccups which felt lovely and reassuring, even if they were at 5.30am! 

I can't help but compare this pregnancy with my last, even though I know I shouldn't.  I started yoga classes when I was 16 weeks with my daughter, and I'd gone to a few antenatal swim classes too, but I have done none of that yet which makes me feel a bit guilty.   So, I have now found a nearby yoga class that I should hopefully go to next week.  I've also started thinking a bit about the birth, even though it's obviously a while away yet.  I just want to feel more in control this time round, not that my first labour was horrendous or anything, but I now know sort of what's coming, so I want to feel prepared. I've just started reading Mindful Birthing by Nancy Bardacke and so far it's really interesting and quite reassuring, so I will let you know my review of the book when I finish it. 

I've had some funny things said to me this week which has made me laugh. Sometimes I think when you are pregnant people lose their normal social filters and think they can say whatever they like to you! One woman asked me if I was looking forward or not to having another baby...I mean, what did she expect me to say, no?!??! Then another woman said on a particularly hot day, 'Ooh, I bet you are going to really struggle over Summer'. Yep, thanks for that vote of confidence, and for your information I'm only 21 weeks!! Obviously I just smiled to both women, whilst thinking in my head, you bloody idiot! 

My dreams have become quite vivid, and whilst to be fair this isn't anything new, this week I dreamt I re-married my husband, saw a giant spider in B&Q and also trained to become a fire-fighter, but I then had bad nerves because I'm scared of small spaces!!!!

I think heartburn maybe raising its ugly head, and I've taken Gavsicon a few times this week, but its nothing too bad at the moment. But don't even get me started on hay fever. I have resorted to walking around the house with tissue shoved up my nose. 

Sorry for the not great picture of bump this week, I was in a bit of a rush taking it.  My daughter turns three at the weekend so I'd been baking all morning, and amidst a power cut and then realising I hadn't got a single egg in the house (how I thought I could make a sponge cake without eggs is beyond me) looking half decent was the least of my worries, so a little bump picture it was.  Also, I licked some of the cake mixture, and then panicked, so ended up Googling, which I shouldn't have done.  I even resorted to rummaging in the bin to find out if the box had the lion mark on it, because apparently that means its unlikely you will get salmonella.  So all fun here! 

Thanks for reading and have a great weekend, 

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Wednesday, 1 July 2015

The truth behind the Instagram filters

If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram (whaaaat?! You don't?! Click the links to your right immediately), then you may be well aware of my recent holiday spam.  From pictures of the amazing California coastline to tweets about, well, food probably, my timeline has been full. 

But we all know that social media, well, it doesn't always tell the full story does it? Whilst giving us an amazing insight into the lives of others, it also filters, tints and downright ignores reality at times. In an effort to address this imbalance, I thought I would share with you my top five holiday embarrassments, cringes and downright awful moments, that I certainly did not Tweet or Instagram.  Brace yourselves.  

1. Landing in San Francisco
I wrote a blog post about my in-flight beauty products and my tips on looking good when disembarking the plane. Blah,blah,blah. As I disembarked our New York to San Francisco flight, I actually thought they would turn me away at customs because I looked so awful. In fact, I looked like I had some rare tropical disease and needed quarantining immediately.  My BFF, pregnancy sickness, struck about 3/4 of the way into the flight. I'd had had a little sob under my blanket, bringing any mascara into lovely black shadows under my eyes, and as soon as we landed I ran straight for the toilets which were packed, to vomit. Glamorous times. 

2. The Toilet One
In America, the toilet's have these little gaps down the side of the doors that means that people queuing up can see a bit of you in the cubicle.  I always found this strange and a little bit off putting.  In fact, this  meant I usually rushed in and rushed out as quick as humanly possible.  This also may be TMI, but I have a thing about sitting on public toilet seats...don't judge me. 

Anyway, we were at a nice restaurant for lunch one day, and I needed the toilet, so off I went.  It was really quiet so I thought I would relax a bit in this toilet and use one of the disposable seat covers and actually sit down. So as I'm sat there, with my trousers round my ankles, guess what?  Yep, that's right, this woman opens the door. It happened in really slow motion and I couldn't even get up in time to shut the door. So she's just standing there and I'm just sitting there.  It felt like an eternity passed before she shut the door. I've never sat on another public toilet since. I may be scarred for life. 

3. Another toilet one
I promise all of these don't involve toilets.  Well, I guess they do really, but anyway. This time, we were at LAX airport, and off I popped to the toilet.  There was a huge queue and I patiently waited in line. When I got to the front, I noticed the big toilet in-front of me wasn't locked so I gave the door a big push.  The door slowly opened to reveal a poor woman sitting on the toilet.  Again, it all happened in slow motion, but the worst thing was the door opened in-front of the entire queue because of how the toilet was positioned.  Oh the shame!! I muttered my apologies and scuttled into the next available toilet quicker than you can say, well, toilet. 

4.  When I cried outside a supermarket
Now we are all friends here, right? So don't judge. I have really struggled with pregnancy sickness and on holiday I found that I suddenly started feeling really hungry the majority of the time.  I found that if I went too long without eating I became quite cranky, upset and started to feel really sick.  One night we decided to stay in for food and to walk to the local supermarket to pick up some bites. But, as we had been on the beach all day, we decided to take a quick shower before going.  

Now, with the three of us there isn't anything quick about it.  By the time we had got showered, dressed and I had chased my daughter round with a hairbrush, I could feel myself being past the point of hunger.  The supermarket was only a five minute walk away, but exactly 2.5 minutes in, I started crying because I was so hungry. Now, I wasn't stuck in the wilderness starving, the supermarket was at the end of the block!!! I even walked past a restaurant full of people eating al fresco sobbing a little.  Oh the shame.  Thankfully my husband shoved food into my hands as fast as humanly possible and then I felt much better. 

5. Crisis on the plane. 
This little crisis took place in the toilet cubicle of the plane (of course).  When I take my daughter to the toilet I usually use our Potette seat which is this amazing portable seat which means she always has somewhere nice and clean to sit rather than a dirty toilet seat.  

As I knew we were nearly landing, and my daughter needed a wee, I quickly scooped her up and rushed to the toilet.  I'd forgotten our Potette, but no big deal I thought, I can just hold her up and hover her over the toilet.  I don't know if it was jet lag or poor distance calculation, but where I hovered my daughter was not really over or anywhere near the toilet at all.  I managed to get splashes of wee all over my trousers and then a puddle on the floor.  I spent the next 10 minutes wiping the awful toilet floor with paper towels to mop up our little accident. The horror. 

And there you have it.  My top five holiday disasters laid bare for all to see. So whilst Instagram and Twitter are great, let's all be honest that real life sometimes tells a different tale. Maybe one day I will look back on these little disasters and laugh, but not yet, it's too soon. I also have completely shattered any illusion of glamorous world traveller status.  Feel free to read more happy times on our stops in New York, San Francisco, Monterey, Santa Barbara and San Diego.    

Thanks for reading, and feel free to share any Instagram or Twitter realities in the comments below! 

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