36 Week Update – almost there now!


Slightly late with this update but we’re nearly there now – 4 weeks and counting!

I have been so lucky this time and really haven’t had much to grumble about but this past fortnight has been a bit stressful, I’ve been to the midwife twice and the hospital three times to monitor baby’s growth as I am now measuring 7 cm under (how measuring the bumps of all women and expecting a similar result, regardless of their body size/shape can be accurate I have no idea?!)

Thankfully everything is fine.

However, little one is exactly that so the monitoring must continue. I have a week off but then at 37/38 Weeks we’re back in to another round of midwife and scan appointments.

Our new addition is definately going to be dinky but not super tiny, around the 5-6lb mark they’ve predicted. Everything is showing as perfectly healthy at the moment, there is enough fluid and the placenta function is fine but because now I haven’t grown at all for 8 weeks (that’s me – I know baby has as I’m soooo much more uncomfortable with every kick and squirm!) it has to be checked that all continues OK.

I’m really pleased everything is being taken seriously now after my earlier concerns and as I’m hoping for a home birth still it is great that so far everybody I’ve encountered has said there is no reason as things stand that we can’t proceed with those plans. In fact, after feeling my midwife was not concerned enough she now seems more so than my first and has been very thorough in going through with me the reasons why I or baby may need to be transferred either during or after delivery, one being if baby is under 2.5kg as they will want to monitor blood sugar levels.

I’m trying to block out a lot of the ‘what ifs’ as although I understand it’s necessary to touch upon things I don’t feel it’s very helpful to dwell. I’m going to plug in my Natal Hypnotherapy and drift off into my little bubble where I’m in control.

In other news…we have been continuing to turn the house upside down with reorganisation, part of this has been turning the ‘spare room’ into Ted’s new bedroom, complete with new big boy bed (and bed guard!) We had no idea how he’d take to moving to a bed and swapping his beloved sleeping bag for a proper duvet but he couldn’t have responded better – we’ve had no resistance or disturbances at all which at only 20 months I thought was pretty amazing. These little people really are awesome!


How gorgeous is the Next Car Bedding??


The baby’s room looks like a storage dumping ground at the moment but actually it’s just all the things we’ll need when they arrive complete with birthing pool and homebirth boxes and a lifetimes supply of towels! We are 100% ready now and have nothing left to buy…just the final bit of waiting to do!

Ted and I have been having a lovely time together recently and I am having twinges of sadness that we don’t have many more 1:1 days remaining. I have been encouraging him to concentrate on activities like painting, drawing and reading in the hope that these will help in the early days. He’s loving them all, we’ve always shared books but now he really listens and points out things in the pictures too and he loves climbing into the book box to pick the next story!


As for making a mess and then getting to sit in the sink and help wash up after too…that’s been a massive hit! 🙂


So, on to things I’ve loved over the past few weeks…

Omperazole – oh my do I love this stuff! When gaviscon just isn’t hitting the spot these little magic pills make all the difference. Without them, nothing stays down but one little yellow tablet and I can actually enjoy both my meals and sleep at night, bliss!

The Mokee Woolnest


Wow, finally a stylish moses basket that isn’t covered in gross frilly covers! This is what we have been waiting for, well what I have been anyway and I can’t be alone, surely? My thoughts…
– They’re a great price,
– I love, love, love the coloured handles,
-The liners and sheets are gorgeous and ridiculously reasonable
-AND I can’t believe the stand is included too!

I think it’s fantastic that the brand has shunned the big stores to allow them to keep prices lower but they really need to up their advertising as people need to know about this cool, stylish alternative to the standard frill fest baskets! Mokee, take note – step 1, get with the times and start tweeting, your silence is madness!!

Finally…the Sunshine, it has made washing and drying all those final bits (that there are so many more of than I realised) a lot easier so thank you Mother Nature for that final burst of October sun!

Until Next time…38 weeks, eekk!

These opinions are purely my own and completely independent, no products or financial gain have been received from featured companies.


Preparing to become a Big Brother

With Peanut’s arrival becoming ever more imminent now I started thinking more seriously about making sure Ted is as prepared as possible for the arrival of his new sibling.

So far we have…

– Been talking about the baby lots.

– Ted has been to all my midwife appointments with me – although generally he’s been trying to stop the lady touching me and then concentrating on eating the snack I’ve distracted him with rather than taking a great interest in what’s happening but as he’s only 19 months I don’t think that’s too much of a concern!

Including bump, in the morning when we snuggle up and slowly come round he now will lift my top up and kiss/blow raspberries on bump, we always use this as an opportunity to talk about the baby and how lovely he is being.


– A new game called ‘Dinner, Dinner, Baby!’ This started with Ted lifting up both his top and mine and me telling him his tummy was full of dinner and mine full of baby…Daddy has since been added in and it has given us many laughs!

Including Ted in the preparations, letting him help unpack deliveries and talking to him about what everything is for. This has proved entertaining for everyone if nothing else!


Helping! I am pretty obsessive about moisturising and in the morning as soon as Ted sees the pot of Bump Cream he heads straight on over with demands of “Ted, cream, help!” And then proceeds to rub cream on my bump…and then generally all over himself too!!


Stories, We have been regularly reading:
There’s a House inside my Mummy for about the past 10 weeks and as well as being a lovely story that we all enjoy the illustrations are simple and easy to relate to our family so I definitely think they’ve helped make a few connections. We have also just added I’m a New Big Brother to our book collection on the recommendation of Emma at Our Fairytale Adventure, this is another lovely book to help understanding and the giggling noise button has given us some giggles of our own too. Ted instantly related to the story and pointed to my tummy during the first time we shared it and has asked to read it many times since.

Preparation, We decided rather than getting Ted a specific present from the baby that I would make a ‘feeding box’ a selection of old and new toys, stories and activities that I’ve put away in a large box that will be from the baby, dragged out at each feed time and packed away after. This will hopefully keep him happy and occupied (alongside a drink and snack) and allow me to feed the baby without an irate toddler protesting or any jealously ensuing! So far we have some building blocks, a few new and a few old favourite books, toy cars, dinosaurs and animals, aqua doodle mini and a dustpan and brush (Ted loves to clean!!). We also plan to let him have some chill out time in front of the TV during one feed and hope he’ll nap during another…all sounds so simple in theory!!

Is there anything else you think we could do to make things easier on the little guy?

The Twinkle Diaries

Travelling with a toddler #8 – Traditions and Memories

I remember attending a training course a number of years ago where we were all asked to share a memory from our childhood…nobody shared anything expensive or materialistic, everyone had a memory that involved time, attention and the majority some sort of tradition.

This has impacted massively on my parenting and although I’ve always known experiences over objects were important, from that day I knew I wanted to make sure when I had a family that we would create some traditions that we’d all look forward to repeating over and over.

Now I have my own little family that is due to expand again in a few weeks (eekk, that’s scary!) and Ted is at an age where he is starting to understand and get excited about things so we thought it was time to start. Lots will just find us naturally I’m sure, some will follow on from experiences Rich and I had as children and others we’ll create ourselves but all will be about minimal money and maximum quality time and attention.

Our first family tradition happened while we were away in Cornwall this August…

Fish and Chips on the Beach!




It was a definite hit!

Ted was not remotely phased by the amount of sand he injested along with his chips…in fact I think he saw the deep clean of his teeth as an added bonus!!

We had an hour and a half of quality time, digging, paddling, finding stones, watching the sky change colour and eating chips plus staying up late…and it was awesome!

Now to get thinking about our next tradition – do you have any you’d like to share?


A letter to my Little Love

My darling,

I’m sorry but life is going to change soon, as we sit together on a lazy Sunday morning snuggled on the sofa I’m a little bit scared and beginning to wish it wasn’t but we’re kind of committed now, 22 weeks down the line!

You currently have no idea what’s in store and to some extent nor do we, it’s unchartered territory but we’ll face it together and try and minimise the disruptions for you as much as possible. I promise we will try not to get cross if you struggle to adapt or tell you you’re a ‘big boy’ because we know you’re not yet but we will do everything we can to make the transition smooth and happy for you…bear with us though even the best intentions can slip when severe sleep deprivation hits!

It may take you a while to appreciate this but we’re doing this for you too. When you’re sharing us, having to wait around and just want some peace to climb up on my lap and share a story together on your terms it might feel hard to believe but one day we hope you’ll think this was the best decision we ever made.

For 21 months it will have been just us, the three amigos, you have had our undivided attention and been the sole focus of our thoughts and plans – soon there will be another. One thing is for certain, our new addition won’t change how we feel about you but realistically it will change our daily routine and the amount of attention you get (a 2:1 ratio the wrong way round, oh the horror!)

Somebody told me this week to imagine my feelings if Daddy came home with a new wife and expected me to be happy, told me nothing would change and that he still loved me just as much with no room for discussion or option to opt out – I can imagine we’d have a few teething problems with that new way of life!!

I will remember this every day as our family grows and try to give you the compassion such a life change deserves (P.S…don’t worry Daddy couldn’t handle two wives, that’s not changing too!)

We never cease to be amazed by the things you understand and can communicate and love every second of watching you grow and change, even if the start to our life as a four is bumpy we know that you’re going to be the best big brother and before long this little invader is going to be your partner in crime. We can’t wait to see you love each other while you play and learn together.

For now, I apologise for being tired and for the little digs in the back peanut gives you when we’re enjoying a cuddle but I hope you know we are and always will be doing our best for you and that you both will remember our family as being one filled with love, laughter and fun as you grow.

Love Mummy xx



22 Weeks



The Block has lifted!

It happens to us all I know but the blog has been somewhat neglected of late – I’ve been busy, uninspired and in all honesty a little bit lazy!

I thought I’d make my return with a little bit of a recap of what I’ve been up to over the past few weeks.

The most exciting part has probably been this…


We got to see the new addition to our family, due to join us in November and now I’ve passed the 20 week milestone know that all is well, although Peanut was feeling very coy on the day and insisted on keeping their variety a secret!

Aside from that my creative juices have been flowing in the kitchen. Ted has completely rejected healthy, non sugar laden breakfast cereals and I don’t like him having them so taking inspiration from Facebook and Instagram pages I’ve set about creating cereal bars and breakfast loafs (cake as Ted has been conditioned to believe he’s being treated to!!) They have been a massive hit…if anybody else has been struggling in a similar way and would like some very quick and simple recipes, just shout!

Baking for Ted has also inspired me to spend some time in the kitchen cooking for us as a family (and saving money at the same time!) I have so far experimented with Quiche, Pies, biscuits and pizza – all of them have been really easy and I’ve surprised myself with how rewarding I’ve found it, goodness I think this means I’m officially old!

Obviously aside from the above there has been plenty of Ted based fun too, the little guy is 17 months now and while he keeps us on our toes he also has us constantly entertained, dancing is a new favourite – This is guarenteed to put a smile on your face!

He loves being outside exploring with sticks and stones…


Daddy is very high up on the popularity list at the moment. Nothing makes Ted happier than being Daddy’s little helper…


Eating his food…


And generally wrapping him around his little finger!


And nothing makes me happier than watching my boys together!

I won’t leave it so long next time!


Home Birth Support

Those of you that have been following our journey for a while will be aware I had a home birth with Ted and that it was a brilliantly positive experience.

I was quite adamant that home birth was the right choice for me from the moment I found out I was pregnant but found joining the Southampton Home Birth group on Facebook a great way to gain support from other parents and professionals (Midwifes, hypnobirthing and NCT teachers) with a wealth of knowledge to share.

Last night we had a meeting arranged by one of the practitioners on the group and Rich and I hosted, we welcomed 6 couples plus 2 practitioners into our home, shared our story and answered questions – mainly to reassure concerned future dads but helping (hopefully) to boost the confidence of the women in their choices too.

It was a lovely evening, the men practiced putting up the birthing pool up in the playroom and said this helped them a lot as one of the biggest concerns was how they would manage to organise everything if/when the lady in their life goes into labour. Us ladies spent this time sat in the living room and candidly talked labour logistics and aftercare.

This whole thing was a little out of our comfort zone initially, Rich’s especially. We’re not really very ‘joiny’, we are not future parent governors or committee members so holding the meeting in our home and taking centre stage to help these couples make their decisions was quite nerve wracking but I’m really pleased we stepped out of our zone and gave something back!


The evening was a real success, all the ladies messaged me after and said how helpful they’d found it and specifically how reasurred their partners felt after hearing Rich talk so positively about our experience. This was so brilliant to hear and exactly the reason I wanted to help with the meeting, having a baby is so nerve wracking and filled with decisions so being able to make one of those decisions a little easier for a handful of future families was lovely (no matter what their final decision may be).

Have you stepped outside of your comfort zone recently? Were you pleased you did?


Striving to be a Positive Parent

We’re all fighting our own battles,  sometimes when Ted goes to bed I sit down and reflect on the day and berate myself for not being the parent I want to be – maybe I was tired and less focused on him,  maybe I gave him a quick tea rather than his usual home cooked meal or maybe he was grumpier than normal and I, shock horror, just felt relieved bedtime was finally here.

Parenting is hard but negative parenting is even harder, if we feel bogged down and snap at our children, among other things it sets us into a negative cycle that’s hard to escape from, I think stepping back and trying to deal with things in a more positive manner makes parenting more enjoyable and models good behaviour.

I am far from perfect, in fact we all know there’s no such thing as a perfect parent however there’s one thing that really upsets me when I’m out with Ted and that is hearing children being spoken to rudely and aggressively. After witnessing this happen in a supermarket recently I started thinking about why these situations may occur and what I could do to prevent them for us.

We are our children’s first educators, we are here to teach them the way to behave and how to interact with others and if their first experience of relationships is being screamed at and humiliated in public, logically, how are they going to grow up and treat people?

In exactly that way, that’s how.

I don’t shout at my friends.
I don’t swear at my friends.
I don’t ignore my friends questions.
I don’t tut and roll my eyes at my friends.
I don’t hit my friends.

So why would I do these things to my child?

Does this mean Ted gets away with everything?

No of course not, it just means that I try to treat him like any other person, with respect and consideration. On top of being loving, affectionate and open, which I’m confident I can achieve, My aims are to;

– Be consistent, if he knows what reaction to expect we both have a better chance of avoiding meltdowns.

– Accept his inevitable frustrations and help him to solve them where possible.

– Attempt to distract and/or entertain him in situations that have the potential to cause upset.

– To converse all the time and to ask him to/not to do things as appropriate, with plenty of warning when possible.

– To speak calmly and give plenty of eye contact.

– To always use please and thank you.

-To be well prepared with snacks and/or entertainment if we’re going places not directly aimed at children or that require patience such as the supermarket or long car journeys.

-To shout at him to stop if he’s potentially in danger and I can’t reach him – because that’s my only way to alert him.

As he gets older I plan to/hope to/want to/will?…

– Ignore negative behaviour, where possible

-Remove certain items if/when necessary.

– Ask lots of questions

– Give choices in the form of 2 options, for example; “Would you like an apple or a banana?” rather than “What would you like to eat?”

I hope treating him in these ways and showing him I value his opinions and ability to make decisions himself will make him realise that on the occasions he does hear a firm ‘No’ there is no room for discussion or argument…or at least that neither of these things will change the final result.

I understand these things will not always work but I am also aware that loosing my temper and shouting at him is certainly not going to make any situation better….on tough days you may find me rocking in a corner counting down the hours until bedtime and hoping tomorrow is a better day while Ted gives me this ‘butter wouldn’t melt’ grin…

That’s better than shouting, right??

Watch this space for updates!

The Dad Network