Monday, 30 January 2017

My baby shower

Love them or hate them it's safe to say that the American baby shower celebration has firmly infiltrated the UK. When I was pregnant with Ava baby showers were still very new, I had my own version with a handful of friends, in the small cottage we used to call home.



On Saturday it was my baby shower, I debated whether to have one but as this baby is more than likely going to be my last I wanted to do something special. Friends and family were invited and it was held in the events room in a beautiful restaurant in my hometown. A couple of my friends kindly decorated the venue and we settled down for afternoon tea and a few baby themed games. I decided to take Ava along too, she's at a lovely age now and is so excited about her new baby brother or sister arriving. I found this gorgeous t shirt from Rose and Guy on Instagram and my mum kindly bought it for her to wear on the day. I wore my Isabella Oliver dress as it's unbelievably comfortable, and with me reaching the 36 week pregnancy mark on Saturday, it's safe to say that comfort definitely comes first at the moment.



The afternoon tea was amazing and we were all surprised at how full we all were afterwards. We played some great games that I bought from Amazon. We played Baby Bingo, "Who knows mummy best?", "Pin the dummy on the baby" and we had a sweepstake with these gorgeous prediction cards. I'd definitely recommend Amazon for baby shower games, everything was so cheap and arrived so quickly!





Baby & I were so spoilt too which was so lovely and unexpected! Ava also received some gifts so she definitely thought it was the best day ever! It was the perfect opportunity to catch up with my friends and family before the baby arrives and newborn chaos ensues! I can't believe that my due date is only 4 weeks away. Today was my first, official day of maternity leave and I started it in style, at the spa. I had the mother-to-be treatment which was amazing, the perfect way to begin maternity leave, especially as people think that this baby is going to arrive early. I've finally stripped the wallpaper in the soon-to-be nursery and I can't wait to share the makeover on my blog.

Have you ever had a baby shower?

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Sunday, 22 January 2017

KidloLand app review*


Ava is at the age where she loves a bit of quiet time, with her being in School full time once I get home from work in the evening she is very much ready for dinner, bath and bed but not without some wind down time first. I have found it difficult to find age appropriate, educational apps for her. I wanted something that she could learn from but it needed to be fun and engaging too, and KidloLand fits the bill perfectly.

Designed specifically with under 5's in mind, this award winning app combines fun animations and recognisable nursery rhymes with over 100 educational activities in exciting, bold colours. The app is said to build your child's hand-eye coordination and cognitive skills. Another positive is that there are no adverts so your child can learn and play without being interrupted.



As a parent I was blown away by the amount of choice within the app itself. She can choose from activities such as phonics, numbers, letter tracing, animals and a whole lot more. Ava's favourite is the "create and play" activity, all about different occupations. She's often asking me what a Barista or a Carpenter is and I know that she's taking it all in. When I asked her what she thought she said that  the app was "really good". We often have long car journeys on the way to my mums so I know that this app is going to be a lifesaver, you can also download the nursery rhymes and listen to them at any time without having to go into the app itself.



The app is often updated with new content which is guaranteed to keep your child even more engaged, you can choose to access the app for free which will allow you to use a certain number of activities or you can unlock the whole app by paying for monthly or annual subscriptions. I was surprised with how impressed I was with the app, although the yearly subscription of £29.99 may seem expensive initially, if you have a child who you know will use the app a lot, it actually works out cheaper than paying for a different pack at a time. KidloLand can be downloaded onto all iOS devices and also from Google Play Store and Amazon Appstore and it is an app that I would highly recommend to other parents.

*We were given a free, yearly subscription to KidloLand in exchange for an honest review.
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Thursday, 19 January 2017

34 week pregnancy update



Feelings:

I'm currently 34 weeks pregnant and I seem to be getting bigger by the day! I'm at work until next Friday when I shall finally be on maternity leave, I absolutely love my job but oh my goodness it's getting hard! Waking up at 5.45am every morning and not getting home until 5.45 at night is a killer. My boss has kindly agreed to reduce my hours next week so I'm looking forward to finishing a little earlier.

Something else that I've been struggling with is feeling like public property, don't get me wrong, it's lovely when people take an interest in your pregnancy but I struggle to understand those who are desperate to tell you of their miscarriages and stillborns, their struggles with pregnancy and "pearls of wisdom." I sometimes feel like a piece of fruit that someone is groping in the supermarket with the amount of times my bump has been prodded and poked.



Suddenly everyone seems to turn into a midwife and will tell you exactly when they think your baby is going to arrive and what gender it will be. I'm very much ready to go into hiding with my bump now and not emerge until my baby is born.

Cravings:

I wouldn't say I've particularly craved anything but my sweet tooth does seem to be loving ALL of the chocolate. I'm not ashamed to say that I ate two chocolate bars one after the other yesterday. Saying that though I have also really been enjoying a big bowl of fruit salad at work. I'll definitely miss that once I'm on my maternity leave and will have to make my own!

Wearing:



I've not bought any more maternity clothes, as I only have a few weeks left there isn't much point. I'm still obsessed with my Topshop maternity PJs and B.D.A Belly Bandit leggings. I did however finally wear my bardot style maternity top, that I'd bought a while ago, for my friend's birthday meal last week. I teamed it with my super comfy leather look trousers from Next.

Baby:

Baby is still super active, especially at night when I'm trying to fall asleep! I'm still thinking that this baby will be a boy!

I have my 34 week midwife appointment today and I'm very much looking forward to finding out whether she thinks my bump has dropped, I'm seriously hoping not as I have so much I want to do! I had my work baby shower this week which was completely unexpected and so lovely. They all got together to buy baby a PurFlo nest which I've read such fantastic things about and a gorgeous baby Gap cardigan with little bear ears! I have my friends and family baby shower next Saturday which I'm looking forward to and a spa treatment booked for the following Monday. So please don't arrive early little one!


The house is currently in a complete state. We're having our bathroom done, which I'm so excited for. but I'm desperate for it to be finished so that I can lounge in a Lush bath! Ava's new bed is finally being delivered this Sunday so we can start to sort out the nursery. I'm hoping that it will help me feel a little less stressed about everything. I'm looking forward to finally being at home and getting everywhere clean and tidy ready for the baby.


How was your second pregnancy different to your first? Did your second baby arrive early? I'd love to know.

Catch up on my previous updates:

-A bump update and the Christmas break so far
-It's not you it's my hormones
-My 20 week pregnancy update
-Being a guilty (pregnant) full-time working mum
-It's not going to be just the three of us anymore
-My first trimester update
-Baby number two and back to blogging
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Thursday, 5 January 2017

The ultimate occasion wear by Roco Clothing*

Shortly before Christmas Ava received a beautiful dress from Roco Clothing for us to review. You know that when a dress comes in it's own dust bag it's going to be pretty special, and we certainly weren't disappointed!



I didn't know which dress they would be sending, all of the dresses on their website are absolutely gorgeous, but I really did fall in love with the dress that they chose for Ava.



The Anna dress comes in both mint green and grey and is part of the Timeless collection by Paisley of London. As you can see they sent us the mint green colour which is beautiful! It has a floral, overlay on top of the sweetheart neckline and a beautiful organza overlay on the skirt which gives it an amazing swishy, princess effect.



Another feature of the dress that I also loved was the bow at the back which unclips to allow you to zip the dress up and then simply clips back on, so much easier than fiddling about, tying a bow, which I'm not very good at any way!



Ava is the little girl with a wardrobe full of princess dresses so this was perfect for her. She immediately asked for a "princess bun" and the garish plastic "jewels" also made an appearance!

We have 4 wedding this year and I know that this dress will be worn to at least one of them! If you are getting married this year and are looking for a flower girl or page boy outfit I highly recommend checking out their website. Not only are their clothes gorgeous and of fantastic quality, they are also extremely affordable. Ava's dress costs between £39.99-£44.99 dependant on size which I think is brilliant considering how lovely and well made it is! They stock all sorts of occasion wear from Christening outfits to bridal shoes, including brands such as Rachel Riley, Rainbow Club and Pretty Princess.

*We were sent the Anna dress free of charge in exchange for an honest review
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Monday, 2 January 2017

My third trimester pregnancy essentials

Now that I am firmly in my third trimester with 8 weeks to go until my due date, I wanted to share with you the things that I can't live without at the moment.



Gaviscon Double Action £6.49 Boots- I have been suffering with horrible acid reflux lately and have recently repurchased Gaviscon as I find that it is the only thing that helps me (although milk does help if you're looking for a quick fix). I have bought the larger, 300ml bottle as I know I'll go through it! I've also bought the handy, handbag sized sachets for when I'm out and about.

Maternity PJs £15 Topshop- These checked maternity PJs are my favourites and are currently on sale on the Topshop website for £15, Bargain! I've basically been living in them.



Dairy Milk chocolate- I'll admit, chocolate is not helping with my acid reflux but my sweet tooth is out of control lately. I'm never far away from chocolate and Dairy Milk is my all time favourite.

Belly Bandit B.D.A leggings*- When I do have to leave the house and my maternity PJs aren't acceptable, I've been wearing my favourite Belly Bandit B.D.A leggings. They are so comfortable and can be worn once the baby is born so I know I am still going to get so much wear out of them.



Gym ball- My friend, who is also training to be a Midwife, has just leant me her gym ball. I didn't use one with Ava but I've been finding it great to ease the bottom of my back when I'm struggling to get comfortable. She told me that it helps to get baby's head into position too,

Natal Hypnotherapy Pregnancy Relaxation Track*- If you've seen my previous post you'll know that I am currently reviewing an online hypnobirthing course with Natal Hypnotherapy and I'm finding this relaxation track so soothing and peaceful. I'm really hoping that hypnobirthing is going to be something that works for me. If you're interested in hypnobirthing yourself, make sure you check back with me once I have finished the course to see how I have got on.

Theraline Maternity Pillow*- I've recently reviewed this pillow and it's honestly fantastic. Especially now that my bump is getting bigger by the day, this really helps me to get comfortable at night. It will definitely be coming with me to the hospital, especially as it doubles as a feeding pillow.



What are some of the things that you couldn't live without during your third trimester?

*I was sent some of these items to review. You can follow the links to read the full reviews.
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