Pregnancy Post:21 weeks.

pregnancy-update

I can’t believe I am over the half way mark of baby #2 already. I haven’t done a pregnancy post since 14 weeks, which you can read here, as I didn’t want to go over the same things too often. So first thing is first, we had a private gender scan done at 16 weeks as we were even more eager to know the sex of baby #2, which is weird as we never even had the urge for a private gender scan on our first baby. As you’ve probably guessed by the image above, we are having a girl! Our 22 month old daughter B is going to have a little sister. Although we secretly wanted a boy (does that make me bad for saying that?) we weren’t disheartened or upset that we were having another girl – all we care about is making sure the baby is healthy and safe! I love the idea of my little one having a little sister too – I think she is going to bond nicely with her. Before I dive in with answering questions, I thought I’d have a little rant, would I really be pregnant if I wasn’t a bit cranky. Anyway, before we found out the sex, the thing that really annoyed me was people constantly saying ‘oh you’ll have a girl, I can’t see you with a boy, you can always try again, you’ll have all girls’ and things like that. Okay, like I said it would be nice to have one of each and hopefully be done with it, but the fact I have been blessed with another daughter is amazing! I don’t know why people feel the need to say oh you’ll have to try again, like having 2 girls is a bad thing? Boy or girl, being pregnant is a wonderful and lucky experience that not everyone gets to go through – having two children of the same sex isn’t a ‘never mind’ moment. I suppose it’s like people giving you unwanted pregnancy advice, hormones run high on all matters I think! Moving on….

How Far Gone: 21+2

Know the Gender: Another little princess!

Cravings:  Actually don’t think I have anything in particular. I just feel my appetite is better, I’m hungry more often.

How are we feeling: To be honest, I still don’t think it’s really sunk it. We still haven’t bought anything (and for an usually organised me this is out of character). I think we are just focusing on Christmas and B’s birthday before Baby Fever takes over. With having a 22 month old, we don’t have much time to sit and dwell on things. We can’t imagine life with another little one – so still very much surreal.

Have you got a Bump and Feeling anything yet? I’m naturally small, being 5ft3 and 8 stone pre-pregnancy, I have a slim figure normally. So I’ve had a bump for a while now. But this past week it seems to have just became a bit more ‘pregnant’ and rounder. I feel lots of kicks and movements at night time mostly, but will get the odd thing through the day. It’s truly amazing still!

How are you Sleeping? You know what, not too bad. I mean I’m now starting to need to put the pillow under my belly when I’m on my side, but I’m never ‘uncomfortable’. Starting to wake for a wee a little more than usual too – but since I suffered PGP in my first pregnancy, this is a breeze.

Names you like:  Not the foggiest. It took us weeks to give our first daughter a name. For some reason we struggle finding girls names we like. Boys are a doddle, but I bet that’s always the way. We like very normal, traditional names that are just normal. Nothing like Ocean-Breeze or Rain-Cloud-Mae. Suggestions are welcome!

Birth Worries/Plan:  My first labour was an amazing experience. I was in the hospital for a total of 6 hours, had B after 4 hours of being in. I didn’t have stitches or pain relief. I’m hoping for the second labour to be like this – but my worry is they are going to be polar opposites. My plan really is to just stay calm, focus and let what is going to happen happen. It hurts either way so may as well try to embrace it. Eeek.

How did you find your second pregnancy in comparison to your first? Was labour what you expected/remembered the second time around?

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Make Friends with Change.

Do you ever sit and wonder if everything happens for a reason? I have. And I think I truly believe that too. I’m 23 years old. And the first 18 years of my life weren’t a walk in the park but I believe it’s best not to dwell on the negative or the past, and simply not let it define you. So more than I ever, I believe something is put in your path for a reason – no matter how positive, negative, upsetting or overwhelming. We are all human.

dandelion blowing with title

Recently, as it seems most years around this time, a bit of bad luck came our way. I knew it was coming. Well I didn’t. But for a few weeks, and if you have me on twitter you’ll have read, I just had this feeling that a black cloud was looming, ready to open and pour down on us. And it did. I’m a stay at home mum to a 22 month old, pregnant with baby #2 – and I am extremely lucky to be in this position and with my partner working to allow this. Here’s this thing, my partner ended up leaving his job. Just before Christmas, just before we were meant to purchase a family car, just after things seemed to be going dare I say it…well. It was a big, messy affair and he was glad to be out. I was happy the weight had been lifted from his shoulders, I could see on his face the relief he felt to be out of a toxic place but at the same time I was riddled with worry. What did this mean for our family? I couldn’t get a job being pregnant, childcare is expensive – no one would employ me (yes I know this isn’t allowed but come on who would?). Luckily we had enough funds to last us until January – but the time bomb was ticking away with every second.

It gave me a kick up the backside. I made a change after being in deep thought for a day or two. I enrolled on a course, distance learning, to finish my training to become a Early Years/Reception Teacher. I now do 3 mornings a week volunteering in a setting across the road from me, with the flexibility to complete the course within two years and change my days to suit around my family. And it’s all funded until I earn over a certain amount which is even better. I am carving myself a future slowly, thinking post-baby/toddlers, keeping myself busy and motivated to take the plunge and transition from SAHM to Working Mum after baby #2 is born.

Again, I believe everything happens for a reason. My partner landed another job after about 10 days of being out of his previous job. One he doesn’t dread, feels more positive about and another bonus of more hours and better pay. It also gave him a fire to get himself into a career he is passionate about and loves – something for him to work towards in the future.

So here I am. Still my brain feels like a muddled, messy baby brain and I still need to settle into the new routine until I can feel I can put my umbrella down from stormy November but it’s a start. It just once again proves, life gives you a challenges at every corner, don’t let it overcome or defeat you. Focus on moving forward and being productive – life truly is what you make of it. So my posts will only be twice a week as of now, I need to prioritise and let myself fall into a routine without adding pressure to myself – so do bear with me and thank you for your continued support. And for anyone going through a rough patch, things will get better, the fog will clear and you’ll see your rainbow soon.

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Is Social Media ruining our ability to socialise?

The internet has 3.17 billion users. Let that number sink in. Now 2.3 billion of those users are active on social media. After reading an interesting article on 96 Amazing Social Media Statistics and Facts for 2016, I  quickly got dragged into a deep wormhole of thought. Technology is evidently everywhere. Our society is one providing information we need want at the open of an app. Gone are the days people discovered news from a newspaper delivery to their homes. What’s more social media is obviously reigning supreme, and human interaction is feebly trying to hold on.

Man on phone on train

How many of us interact with others through social media everyday? Be it replying to a tweet, getting involved in a twitter chat, responding to comments on any platform or even Whats App’ing and text messaging as they loosely fall under this category too. We all do it. What’s more we all do it every single day. A lot. Especially if your hobby and/or business is internet/technology based. It’s a must in order to keep active and present, fully understandable too but do we know when to truly switch to sleep mode on social media and technology? Or is it a concept that’s lost to us. We make a conscious decision every day to be involved in the world of social media, can we say the same about regular human interactions?

Did you know that according to a 2015 report in The Telegraph , the average person has not one but FIVE social media accounts and can spend upwards of 1 hour and 40 minutes a day skimming through them, if you’re a Briton it’s likely to be 1 hour and 20 minutes across FOUR social media accounts. How insane is that? These days how many of you spend 1 hour and 20 minutes a day socialising in person, (your child, pet, husband or someone in your household who you speak to everyday does not count). I mean – how many of us make an effort to actually make plans, to go out and actually connect with someone in person and what’s more want too. I’ll admit it, I don’t. And if you are one of those people who do (firstly I truly applaud you and your superhuman abilities) how many times do you take out your phone and scroll through during? Again, guilty!

Recently I deleted my personal Facebook account. A rash decision after sitting musing one day over how many of the people on there do I actually consider to be a friend? Not an old school friend or childhood friend who you found online, not a work colleague you make small talk with over the morning coffee break or a friend of a friend. How many are actual friends? People who make an effort to be in my daughters life, people who I could phone at 3am during an emergency, people who I would make plans with. Don’t get me wrong social media can be, and indeed is a wonderful platform for connecting with family members who live far away but let’s be honest, many of us have social media skills better than actual people skills. Flicking through my newsfeed I found myself thinking, why am I on here (as a personal account)? What am I actually gaining, because time clearly isn’t one of them. Social media is clearly robbing me of my free time. I sit reading about other peoples lives day in day out, checking it like a morning newspaper, ‘liking’ all the fun things people are up too ( on social media whilst  on these outings too might I add) and simply feel as if I’m shutting off from my own life and my ability to make plans. Where is the logic in that? So I did it. I cut it out and made a commitment to actually socialise more. Be it a lunch date, a phone call, a quick trip to the local park with fellow mummy friends – I made a change.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying social media is something we need to shut out of our lives, because it’s been very beneficial to me and it is indeed very important to many people in terms of connecting to loved ones. I just mean do we really need to stare at our screens as much as we do. Do we really need to check our notifications first thing in a morning and last at night? Are we missing out on actual life?  Through apps we can’t see our friends/family laugh, react and respond to us, we don’t get to react and feel in response to this – we are bypassing interacting and feeling on a human level. Some days, my hub to be sits scrolling through his news feed, reading pretty generic and repetitive updates,  missing out on our daughter screeching singing and dancing to Frozen’s Let It Go (maybe this is why he was scrolling through hmm). Something that seems so small and insignificant but when our children grow, it’s moments like that we are wish to relive.

So I say, make plans. Live in the moment that little bit more. Arrange a family day out without any social media, commit to a date night without looking at your phone (and if you do, you are dumped with the bill), connect with your friend over lunch rather than Whats App. Even make the effort to send a phone call rather than send a text. Commit to making more of a human interaction, to feeling. Set an example to our younger generation that you don’t need to socialise through a phone or computer. That it’s good for the soul to be able to take a break and what’s more, know when a break is needed to bring the balance back to your life.

Time is gone in the blink of an eye. Don’t let social media/apps/technology steal more than it needs too.

loll

All images used were taken from canva as a free image. 

How often do you use social media purely for entertainment? Do you think you can afford to cut back on the usage? What would you like to change about your social media to socialising life?

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It’s all my fault.

I was that annoying, gloating mother. B has never really been a bad sleeper but from  10 months to 18 months, she was fantastic. A shining beacon of a baby at bedtime. Tears of pride/joy may have even been shed. We used to pop her in her bed and then, goodnight, that was her for at least 11 hours. 11 hours of glorious, undisturbed sleep. The best part, for me, was the calmness bedtime brought. Having your young child fall asleep effortlessly whilst all your facebook friends posted of their 2/3/4am rises was, I hate to gloat but, bliss.  B wouldn’t sleep with us through her own choice. We were exceptionally proud smug parents. That was until around 18 months. This is where this post is going to get a bit long winded and lengthy, so please bear with me.

sleep regression, toddler, sleep training, gradual retreat, bedtimes, children, parenting, blogs, pbloggers, mummybloggers

Due to have a weekend away with some family members and the room we were to stay in was small, not much room for a travel cot. So filled with worry, I started lying down in bed with B to see if she would doze off with me there, to prepare for the bedtimes in case a cot didn’t fit in the rooms. Anyway – come the weekend away the cot did fit, but being 2 months pregnant, exhausted and filled with nausea I wasn’t up for late night socialising with the other adults. I happily spent my nights in bed with my little lady. I put her in bed with me, even though she was happy enough to go down in a cot. Why? I don’t know. Craving attention? Wanting some beloved cuddles? My own selfish reasons? Probably. The weekend went hitch free. Sleep was great. Coming home, sleep was still fine. Until about a week later.

B had been in a toddler bed since 1, absolutely loved it too I might add. She enjoyed the freedom. Being a ‘big girl’ and happily wandering into her parents room in the morning, beaming, full of smiles, refreshed and ready for morning cuddles. But things started to change. Our once undisturbed nights started gently becoming disturbed with her coming into the bedroom, angelically tapping us, wanting us to pull her into bed, (which being the fantastic sleeper she is was, we did so without a moments thought). Purely thinking she was re-adapting into her normal routine (as I read a holiday can switch up routine) and to be honest, making the most of sleepy, loving cuddles we didn’t think a problem was unfolding. The gentle wake ups started becoming more frequent, then came the ‘not wanting to lie in bed’ phase. Then the ‘crying if we left the room’ phase. Then the ‘trying to get  to sleep in our bed, just to grab a few hours’ phase. You know where this is going. Worse and worse. Bad habit after bad habit. We went from almost 12 hours a night, to averaging 5-7 hours, with wake ups in between (not just wake ups, but full on crying/angry/temper tantrums which I don’t believe are nightmare/fear related). Now 6/7 hours of broken sleep may sound a lot to some, and those are probably cursing me as reading, but for our once fabulous lover of sleep – we were feeling more like zombies with everyday.

B started to scream more each day before even getting into her bedroom. Demanding I lie in bed with her/next to her in bed until she sleeps, which of course I did if it meant me grabbing a few winks. This week though, it took a turn for the worst. This past week broke us. B started to refuse to sleep all together, sometimes not sleeping until near midnight – which I know only fuels her overtired, ratty, none sleeping state. Constant waking up crying. She didn’t want to be in her bed, in our bed, awake, asleep, to be picked up, to be put down. Nothing. Nothing soothed her. She’d sit up next to me whaling ‘mumma’, and the occasional ‘don’t like it’ in response to me reasoning. Me and hub-to-be became irritated with each other. We became narky with B. The shear confusion of how to handle the situation was effecting us each day.

BUT we  have taken action. After slowly regressing for almost three months. We have made a plan. From now the bedtime routine (teeth/wash or bathtime/story time/milk/wind down period) is massively reinforced. We have chose to do the gradual retreat method, as I feel this sleep regression is massively linked to seperation aniexty that can come at this age. So basically, once bedtime hour is done, we take her to bed, lie her down, say goodnight/tuck her in/give her comforters etc, and we sit in the room. Close enough to her that she can see us but far away from reach. I feel mean when she is saying ‘mumma’ and waiting for me to answer but my little one is clever. She knows how to try to delay bedtime. So basically I don’t respond. That sounds really mean but I assure you it’s not. Anyway, we continue that, lying her back down every so often if needs be with a reassuring cuddle but no talking or eye contact – reinforcing the time is for sleep now, not playing.

  • Night 1: trying this method took 1 hour and 20 minutes before B slept. But there was 0 crying and she let me be a little out of sight, which is  HUGE improvement from our refent bedtimes. She woke up once at 4:30am and we had an upset period of the usual ‘mumma’ ‘don’t like it’ for around 30 minutes but super Dad managed to get her to sleep in her own room (again is an improvement as she point blank refuses to have anyone but me) after having a calming cuddle.
  • Nap time Day 1: took just 20 minutes, again no crying.
  • Bedtime night 2: second night took a shorter time of 55 minutes (compared to previous night). There was a little crying and I needed to be firmly in eyesight at all times but I still take it as a victory as I haven’t had to fight with her or lie with her. Successful night. 1 wake up at 5:50, fell back to sleep alone within 10 minutes and then woke up at 8:15am. Massively happy with this.
  • Nap time day 2: some ‘fake’ crying and trying to find excuse to stay awake such as ‘mummy socks off’ but took a total of 20 minutes.

I know I made a lot of bad habits for her and I am a lot to blame for the sudden shift. But after it seemingly getting worse for months, and finding out I am expecting baby number 2, we are really keen to support her and help re-sleep train her in a gentle, calm way. The part I struggle with is the waking up in the night as I don’t know the ‘protocol’ to follow and I find this is where I refer to as habits. I’m hoping that the more comfortable she feels going to sleep back on  her own in her own bed will influence  and reduce her night wake ups.

Final note: things seem to be going smoothly. We are being consistent and positive with our plan, and small victories are greatly celebrated. I will update on the journey/improvements/struggles in a weeks time. Hopefully she isn’t luring us into a false sense of security and comes back with a sleep regression vengeance. sleep regression, toddler, development, bloggers, parenting, sleep re-training, mum blog

Did you experience sleep regression at this age? Was your child a good sleeper and suddenly shifted? What worked for you? 

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3 Amusing Motherhood Moments. 

We all have those moments where you simply can’t stop chuckling away at your child, whether it’s for good or bad reasons. Children are definitely interesting, unpredictable, spontaneous characters! I’ve had plenty of different moments over the last 18 month journey of motherhood. I’ve had the good, bad and the ugly. But after doing B’s 18 month update (which you can catch up on right here), I ended up reflecting on some of the funny moments my little one has brought me. So here we go, three amusing moments (in no particular order): 


  1. B is colouring with her crayons on a big roll of paper whilst I potter about cleaning after tea time. Oh crap, I’ve forgot the dustpan and brush! B is still colouring, only glancing up to check on what Iggle Piggle is up to every now and again. Surely I can just nip in the kitchen and grab it? Yeh B is still fully submerged in her masterpiece, go go go. *runs into the kitchen*. B isn’t colouring. In her hand she has a black biro pen (these things just appear at the worst times)… She’s stood near the walls. I have grey wallpaper in my living room. Where did that pen come from? Wait – when did the wallpaper have that pattern? No it can’t be? Yep. She’s drew on the wall. Ask B what that is on the wall, she says ‘allwiiite’ (translation alright) whilst shaking her head and hands. She disappears, stomping into the hallway, returns with hairspray (this was in the stairs to be taken up) with a look that without a doubt shows she means business and then proceeds to get a baby wipe…What in the world? B pretends to spray the pen mark and tries to wipe the pen mark… ‘Muma draw gone’. It took me a while to figure it out but a couple of weeks earlier B saw me get some pen off the wall with this technique, so she tried to get her mark off by doing this. I didn’t know whether to laugh at her or tell her off!
  2. B is playing with her toy baby. Walking Walzing around the living room, pushing the trolley and picking her baby up to cuddle and give ‘mall’ (translation milk) every so often. How cute? A few minutes later B shushing and says night night, if only getting a baby to sleep was this quick and easy and tear free, and toddles off happy that her dolly is content. The cat jumps up in the windowsill, knocking off the picture frame in the process. Que a bang. B stops in her tracks. It’s okay it’s just the cat being cheeky. B stares. Tuts and then charges over to the window sill, stopping when the cat is in front of her. ‘O dehur’ (translation oh dear), ‘baba na night’ she shouts pointing and frowning at the very confused cat. I wouldn’t like to be kitty now. B twirls round, rushes back to her babies pram and proceeds to rock the trolley back and forth, clearly getting the baby back to sleep. Karma but seriously I’m a little scared of this diva’ish behaviour. 
  3. B is in her bedroom, tottering around in her own little world and playing whilst I put away the huge pile of washing next to her wardrobe. B proceeds to go and sit in her toy car and pretends to drive to the ‘pops’ (translation shops). B is trying to strap her seat belt around her. Best help her before she stresses out. B gives me the stare down as I read into the car. Maybe this wasn’t a good idea. ‘No Mumma’. I step back and leave her too it. Walking away I just hear a little voice say ‘illy gurl Mumma’. Surely not. My 18 month old didn’t just say that. 

So there you have it, a few moments that have brought a smile to my face. It’s funny what your little ones say and do, especially when they are at an age where they seem to pick up on everything (even things you wish they wouldn’t) and do something new and different every day. It’s like you can see there little impressionable minds and personalities being moulded right before your eyes. I definitely think one of the biggest blessings of being a parent is having these little, unique moments where you just look at your child and laugh at how they react and handle situations, even if deep down you know you should be telling them if the ‘correct’ thing to say/do.

What kind of things do your children do that make you smile and laugh? 


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Why blogging has taken a back seat.

Quick update to let you all know I am still here, to apologise for the lack of interaction and hopefully I posting regularly again in the near future. With Christmas happening I’ve been so busy (as everyone is at this time of year), on top of that I have moved into a new house…literally days after Christmas, I know crazy – so I don’t have a spare five minutes to sit and blog.

My little girl B has her first birthday this weekend so I will be blogging next week letting you all know about her progress and her day. But as a sneak preview, she’s walking now, quite confidently too, and touch wood we have cracked self soothing and full nights, but I know babies like to trick us so fingers crossed. It’s also my fiances birthday the week after so as you can imagine, I have my hands well and truly tied at the moment.

I miss reading lots of lovely blogs and visiting my favourite links but with a bit of luck I will be back into the swing of things soon! Oh and thanks for still visiting my blog, even though I haven’t posted, it really has lifted my spirits in these tricky, stressful weeks.

Lots of Love

 

 

B Diaries: You are now 11 months.

No. It can’t be. Surely not. 11 beautiful months since my little B was born. It’s so cliche to say but time really does pass by so quickly. I’m getting slightly emotional thinking of where my small 7lb 11oz newborn has disappeared too, but very proud of all she has accomplished in her 11 months. Here goes…

Teeth: B got her first two teeth through no problem at four months old, so I thought teething was going to be a doddle…How wrong and naive. For months we sat and waited for another little peg to pop through, we have been lucky though and only had one bad teething night so far. But anyway this month it finally happened. Another little tooth has broken through, taking B up to a total of three teeth!


Physical: B has also started to stand by herself. She’s still a little wobbly and quickly sits down but her control is improving and her confidence is growing along with the duration of her standing each time. Each day she’s getting a little more confident in herself and it’s amazing to think how far she has come in 11 little months. She’s super confident and speedy at crawling, climbing, rolling, crushing, walking with her push along walker – you name it she’s doing it. And finally on 10th December 2015, a few steps have been taken! 

Communication:  B has always be a good communicator, well with me and her family anyway. She’s come on so much with her babbling. The latest words she’s trying to say are:  birdies, nod nod, bye, Bronson (our cat which comes out Wonnso). They aren’t clear or noticeable to others but we can now tell the difference between things she is saying. She’s much better at non verbal communication. She joins in enthusiastically with nursery rhymes too…wind the bobbin up she has mastered, actions and all. (See I’m well in up with pride and I used to be hard as nails pre-baby).

Sleep: B is still sleeping from around 8:15pm – 7:30am, but she has been waking up at some point in the night and not going back to sleep for an hour or so, or fighting with us before giving in. I really hope this is a stage that most mums have experienced and not sleep regression. She still has a good nap in the day, so I try to catch up on some sleep when I can. B seems happy enough though which is the main thing. It’s not a permanent thing is a mantra I am living by.

Eating: B is now very much wanting to feed herself now. Which makes it difficult for me, as a worrying mother I am I constantly feel as if she hasn’t ate enough. I also have to think of meal plans that include foods she can feed herself because she hasn’t mastered the coordination of a fork or spoon just yet. She is a very good eater, I’m yet to find a food she dislikes (hoping this continues). She is a big fan of corn on the cob at the moment. She experienced her first Nandos date with mum and dad (she only had mash and veg). B does go through days of not wanting to eat, and days of eating everything. I’m putting this down to teething. B drinks plenty of water and milk through her own sippy cup, only having one bottle at bedtime and maybe in the morning if she feels like it.

Favourite things:  B loves stories. Her favourite is The Gruffalo and I Love my Daddy. She also loves to play with bouncy balls or any ball of any sort. Bing Bunny is her absolute favourite CBeebies character and she does love a good Christmas song or anything she can dance too for that matter at the moment.

Not so favourite: B is 100% at that stage where she wants to do what she wants. She hates being told no. She will or tend to cry, before quickly getting distracted with a nearby toy. B doesn’t like very overcrowded, noisy rooms as we found out at her Uncles birthday party (she soon cheered up when she had a slice of pizza in her hand).

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11 months done. Now to savour this final month before my little one is one year old. Wow.

Lots of Love

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday