Category: THIRD TRIMESTER

We aren’t ready for you yet, little boy.

We aren’t ready for you yet, little boy.

It seems this baby boy of ours is set on keeping us on our toes. If you’re following me on Twitter or instagram, you might have seen me talking about how I just have this gut feeling that he will make an earlier than planned […]

The Glucose Tolerance Test – Have I Got Gestational Diabetes?

The Glucose Tolerance Test – Have I Got Gestational Diabetes?

I spent my morning at the hospital today for a variety of pregnancy related tests & injections. One of the things they were testing for was Gestational Diabetes and I thought having been given very little information in the lead up about what to expect […]

PREGNANCY #2: 29 WEEKS PREGNANT

PREGNANCY #2: 29 WEEKS PREGNANT

It’s official, I’ve reached the third trimester and while in the most part I’ve eased my way through this pregnancy I’m really starting to flag a bit now. I feel every day of 29 weeks pregnant and with 11 more weeks to go until due date, things are about to get busy.

Symptoms

I’m not sure if it’s the recent arrival of a poorly starfishing toddler in my bed or the fact my bump is already the size it was at 40 weeks last time but the back pain has really ramped up this last couple of weeks. I Started to feel really nauseous in the evenings again and with all the sickness bugs going around I thought I might be about to come down with something but I think now that it’s just my body’s way of telling me to rest. I’ve also started to have Braxton Hickes and a few other signs that this baby might not be wanting to stay tucked up in there ’til due date already!

Time to slow down?

With baby keeping me on my toes a bit this last two weeks, it’s dawned on me this week that I’m constantly being told that I need to slow down a bit, which for someone whose brain needs to be busy at all times is quite difficult. I’m not someone who can just do nothing. Apart from anything else my to do list is too long, especially this time of year! BUT I have started to take the pressure off of going out each day a bit and Florence and I have been taking full advantage of having Sean home (yep, still no work!) to share the load. Saying that, I’ve opened a little Christmas shop online making and selling Christmas Eve boxes and stocking fillers for little ones in a bid to top up our savings pot which is keeping me fairly busy. If you’re looking for this kind of thing you can find us on Facebook.

Are you sure there aren’t two in there?

They’ve started… the entirely inappropriate questions at shop checkouts, the park and pretty much anywhere else. Yes there’s only one baby in there and No, they haven’t got my dates mixed up.

The name game

Oh my word, boys names are difficult! We must have read the baby name book front to back at least five times now and we are still no closer to agreeing on a name for this little one. With Florence, we at least had a shortlist. We want something that goes nicely with Florence and the surname Smith, that is a little unusual and or wonderfully classic at the same time and bonus points if it had a nature / floral origin… please, if you have any ideas send me your suggestions!

What’s baby up to?

At 29 weeks gestation baby weighs around the same as a butternut squash, which is roughly 2.7lbs and is circa 38cm long! He now has eyelashes and can produce actual tears now too. As his brain becomes more and more complex, its shape is changing from smooth to more bumpy and over the next 11 weeks ir will have created billions of neurons. His bones are also strengthening by the day which would explain the unbelievably strong kicks and movements I now feel all day long!

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Florence’s Birth Story

Florence’s Birth Story

I am sitting here in a little bit of disbelief that eight days have already passed by since our little Florence made her entrance in to the world. In the same breath, it really does feel like she’s been a part of our family forever. […]

40 Weeks Pregnant

40 Weeks Pregnant

Well, we made it! Here I am, bump and all at 40 weeks and 2 days and honestly? I am a little bit shocked we’ve gone over due! I’ve been having so many false starts and cramps and all sorts for a couple of weeks […]

Freezer Meal Ideas for New Parents

Freezer Meal Ideas for New Parents

Whether you’re getting prepared for your own new arrival or wanting to help out a new couple about to enter the baby daze, making healthy & home cooked meals that can be frozen and heated up in between nappy changes, feeds and baby jiggling with little brain function  is a sure way to make life with a newborn that little bit easier. When I started maternity leave, I did a huge online TESCO shop in which I stocked up on a  months worth of groceries to make up as many home-cooked, nutrient packed meals as possible as well as making sure there were plenty of snacks on hand to see us through the day. Normally, I try to make everything from scratch to keep the costs down, but for time and convenience you’ll spot some store bought sauces & packets in some of the following meals which I’ve split into six categories according to their main ingredient.

Top Tip: Make sure your larder is full of basic ingredients to see you through the prep stage as well as further on. Stock cubes, sauces, pasta, rice, flour & herbs are all essentials!

Diced Beef

Beef Stew & Dumplings – Make up the dumplings & freeze separately ready to be added to the stew when you reheat. Add potatoes (if you didn’t include them in the stew initially) or some crusty bread to accompany.

Beef in Black Bean Sauce – Super easy to cook! Just fry up the beef (diced or shredded) and add your frozen stir fry vegetables to the pan with a jar of store bought black bean sauce ready to be cooled & popped in the freezer. When you’re ready, defrost, heat it up and add some microwave rice for a filling meal.

Steak & Onion Pie – I use this super simple John Barrowman recipe I found on the BBC website. The use of ready made pastry is a god send and you can easily make up individual pies rather than one big one by dividing the ingredients into four. Add some vegetables & a serving of mashed potato when you’re ready to serve and you’ve got yourself a tasty & hearty meal.

Minced Beef 

Chilli Con Carne – We use the Colmans packet mix for Chilli Con Carne – just follow the instructions on the back of the packet. Serve with your choice of rice, jacket potato or garlic bread.

Cottage Pie – Brown your minced beef off in a frying pan and then add to a casserole dish along with sliced carrots, diced onion & peas. Cook on 200 degrees for an hour, cool and freeze. Add mashed potato topping when you’re ready to eat.

Bolognese – Just the sauce! I use the Slimming World recipe to make my bolognese sauce which you can find here. I always cook spaghetti from fresh as to me it just has a nicer texture that way so I cook that on the hob while the sauce is being reheated. You can always add garlic bread on the side too!

Chicken

Chicken Fajita Mix – We use Old El Paso Fajita kits. Just follow the cooking instructions on the box and freeze. Make sure you freeze the tortillas too!

Chicken Tikka Massala – A definite jar jobby! Dice your chicken breasts, an onion, some cauliflower & brocolli and add to a casserole dish / slow cooker with a jar of Tikka Massala sauce. Leave to cook, cool & freeze. Serve with microwave rice and poppadoms.

Chicken & Mushroom Pie – This recipe from Jamie Oliver’s 30 minute meals is so so easy. Just accompany it with boiled new potatoes, brocolli & carrots.

Top Tip: Stock up on frozen vegetables – they’re easy to cook up as a side dish for most meals while you’re heating everything else up. It might be an idea to separate larger packs into portions for minimum faff. 

Sausages

Sausage Casserole – Sean’s favourite and again, another Colman’s packet mix. They’re just so easy!

Vegetables

Sweet & Sour Vegetables – Using the other half of the stirfry vegetable back you used for the Beef in Black Bean Sauce simply fry off the vegetables, add your jar of store bought sauce and cool and freeze. Serve with rice and prawn crackers.

Fish & Seafood 

Fish Pie – You can buy fish pie mix from pretty much any supermarket and they generally come with instructions on the back of the packet too. However, if you’re more into using fresh ingredients from your local fishmongers, give this recipe from Delicious magazine a go.

Salmon Fish Cakes – Taken straight from the BBC Good Food website, fishcakes are super easy to make and can be served with all manner of things. This is the quickest recipe I’ve found and they’re perfect for freezing and reheating.

Sides 

Homemade Potato Wedges – Simply cut a large baking potato into eight wedges, top them with some dried herbs or seasoning and pop them in the oven for around 20 minutes. Freeze & reheat as needed.

Homemade Chips – Sean & I both have different recipes for our homemade chips, but my preferred choice is the Slimming World Syn Free one. They’re really easy to make and also really tasty. Again, freeze and reheat as needed. It might be a good idea to do these in bulk & then split into portions!

I’ve made four portions of each of the above meals ready to rotate throughout the first month of life with a newborn. We also bought some pizzas, burgers, sausages & breaded chicken ready to pop in the oven for quick 20 minute meals that don’t require much planning.

Top Tip:  It’s a good idea to stock up on things like baked beans, tinned soups, packet /pot noodles and eggs for those times when you’re not really hungry / don’t have time for a big meal but need to have something quick. Beans or egg on toast are super quick to make, full of iron and tasty solutions which can be ready in minutes and soups and noodles make the perfect lunch when you need a little more than a sandwich. 

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39 + 3 Weeks Pregnant

39 + 3 Weeks Pregnant

We are just days away from our due date and after 39 weeks of growing this little girl in my tummy, we are SO ready to meet her and operation ‘Get This Baby Out’ is officially underway. I had a bit of a wobble in my […]

Preparing your dog for a new arrival

Preparing your dog for a new arrival

Over the last two weeks this little guy has become quite the velcro pup. I wondered if this time would come, if he’d begin to pick up on the fact that big changes are about come our way in imminent future. People talk of their […]