Saturday 28 February 2015

Me and Mine February

February has been a month of change, as Archie turned 2 and celebrated with Peppa Pig and cake and as we welcomed a fifth member into our family.  Pretzel was born in the early hours of February 25th and it was love at first sight. Things haven't gone as smoothly as we have liked following his arrival and I will post more once we are sorted and at home but I couldn't not share a family photo for this month.

Due to being in hospital still I am left with my phone and questionable Internet signal but here is our family in February, all of us.

Mummy is loving her beautiful boys (all 4 of them), the anticipation of baby's arrival, being able to sleep on her tummy again and her wonderful friends that have brought cake and listened.

Daddy is loving his baby son, watching Peppa pig at the cinema (yes, really), cutting the cord and listening to Dylan tell stories.

Dylan is loving that the baby has 'popped out', sleepovers at Grandma and Grandpa's,  birthday cake and singing 'down in the jungle'

Archie is loving pointing out baby's features, telling people he is 3 and not 2, going to nursery on a Tuesday and his lovely birthday gifts.

Pretzel is loving snuggly cuddles on mummy,  when I sing twinkle twinkle, having a good look around and sleeping. 

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Sunday 22 February 2015

Turning Two

Turning two is a pretty big thing and we got to celebrate with Archie this week as he hit that milestone.  He may have been mostly unaware, but his big brother was not, and with the impending arrival of a new brother, we wanted to make sure Archie had a day just for him.  We didn't plan too much, but we did manage to fit in three of his favourite things - Peppa Pig, Balloons and Family.

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The Third Baby

The first baby gets spoilt - New clothes, toys, furniture and of course lovely gifts from family and friends.  Dylan had so much we didn't have to shop for the first year and cards came in from people we had never even met as it was the first grandchild for my parents and a special occasion.  With him being our first, we had a disposable income that allowed us to choose the pushchair and nursery furniture of our choice and everything was new.

The second baby does well - especially when he is born not long after his sibling and Archie was treated to all new furniture as Dylan was still in his cot and a new buggy as we needed a double now.  He got bought beautiful things from family and friends but the visitors didn't queue at the door as they had the first time and we were not inundated.  We were happy and he was loved.

With the third, I am not sure what to expect.  To us, it is still just as exciting, his arrival will be as amazing and life changing as before, and he will be new in every way, but with this being our third in as many years, will everyone else still be as interested?  Pretzel still has some lovely new bits and I have had more fun shopping for his clothes than with either of the other boys as we know we are pretty sorted for a lot of things.  We have a nursery set now that Dylan has outgrown his, although we do need to buy a new cot mattress.  We have baby toys and books in every room of the house and more importantly, we know what we need - what we like and what we didn't get on with.  

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Friday 20 February 2015

Waiting for Baby

As my due date fast approaches I can honestly say that this pregnancy has flown by.  Even the past few weeks which are meant to drag seem to be disappearing and I know that in the next 4 weeks I will have a third baby boy.  It is strange to think that Dylan was born at this gestation, yet I feel no signs that our little Pretzel is coming anytime soon.

The last few weeks of pregnancy are precious, even more so if things are straightforward.  Every day my swollen tummy takes me by surprise, but every morning I look at it in the mirror, in amazement at what my body is doing, how it is growing and supporting a little life and at quite how stretched my poor skin is.  

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Thursday 19 February 2015

My Little Duckling

I have a pair of hat obsessed children at the moment, and I am rather happy that they are both wearing them voluntarily after spending their first year pulling them off their heads the moment they got close!  We were sent a gorgeous pilot hat from My Little Duckling for Archie and it has fast become his favourite.

My Little Duckling are a brand new company and their hats are currently available in sizes up to 3 years, with the biggest size being pretty generous as Archie has a big head!  I love the design and the style keeps Archie's head and ears warm.  It is super soft and thick without being bulky.  We took to the park as the weather this week has been glorious and Archie had fun exploring with his new headwear.  We love the little details, the bright red inside, the badge on the side and the little flaps.
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Monday 16 February 2015

Before You Turn Two

As I kissed your head tonight, I thought back to two years ago - a situation I am finding rather familiar as I carry a large bump in front of me, and I remember the excitement, the anticipation, the wonder as you came into the world.  This time two years ago I was clueless that I was soon to meet the boy who would make me the mother I am today, but by the time you wake up tomorrow, it will be two whole years since the first time I held you in my arms and told you I loved you.

This year has seen you change from a baby to a toddler - from a crawling babbling little person into one who walks, runs, jumps and talks.  Every week at the moment we see changes in you as you learn more words and string them together in more complex ways.  Last week we realised that you really did know all your colours now after months of declaring everything to be either yellow or blue.  You have never had a problem communicating what you want, but you are growing up to be polite and confident as you step on to every bus with a 'ticket please lady' (even if the driver is most definitely a man).

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Sunday 15 February 2015

37 Weeks Pregnant

I have made it to full term, which means in the next 5 weeks my little Pretzel will no longer be in my tummy, but in my arms.  It seems crazy to think how fast 37 weeks have flown and I still can't get my head around the fact he could arrive any day now.

I am mostly still quite comfortable with this pregnancy, although I am getting a lot of Braxton hicks, they really aren't painful.  At my 37 week check up, the baby was head down but not engaged at all, which is probably how I am managing to avoid the familiar waddle at the moment.  The midwife wasn't bothered as their heads can pop in and out quite frequently by the third baby.  All was looking well and I am not measuring too many weeks ahead so they aren't worried about his size (although they did confirm that he feels big still).

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Thursday 12 February 2015

35 Weeks Pregnant

35 weeks pregnant, 35 week update, 35 week baby bump, baby boy bump
35 weeks pregnant, 35 week update, 35 week baby bump, baby boy bump

The countdown is on, but I am guessing I still have plenty of time left until Pretzel makes an appearance as I don't seem to be in a rush to do much at all!  This fortnight his movements have definitely changed and it feels like he is running out of room.  I feel wiggles and nudges more than kicks and I can often make out a limb pushing against the front of my bump.

I never had Braxton Hicks with the other two boys, but I have been having them quite consistently for the last week or two, sometimes all day long and sometimes just in the evenings.  I don't find them painful at all, but my whole tummy goes hard for nearly a minute before relaxing again.  It was this that spurred me to actually start putting together a hospital bag as whether I was ready or not, it seems my body is getting ready to birth this baby.

I still haven't finished it, but the essentials are in a bag along with a list of what else I need to pack.  I have also hung up the new clothes we have bought for him in the wardrobe, despite the fact that you can't really get to his wardrobe because of all the other 'stuff' in the room.  Next week's task is to clear it out, build some furniture and start making it a calm space for us both. 

My wardrobe has moved more towards leggings that jeans as I am finding under bump don't stay up thanks to the heavy low bump, and overbump dig in so uncomfortably thanks to the sheer size of me.  I remember hitting this stage with Archie and digging out the summer dresses to then cover in layers as they were the only thing that fits.  

My bladder is not coping as well in the day times and I think little pretzel sees it as some kind of squeezy toy.  Some days I seem to be popping to the loo every 30 minutes but thankfully I never have to get up in the night.  In fact, other than the fact I am not going to bed anywhere near early enough, I am sleeping well thanks to the right pillow combination.  

As for cravings, the need for cheese is dying down and being replaced by chocolate - mostly creme eggs although I will take anything!  I certainly haven't lost my appetite and can still eat as much as ever.  

At my 34 week midwife appointment bump was measuring on the larger side and my personalised growth chart predicted he was around 7lb that day.  I am not expecting a small baby but it will be interesting to see how accurate it is.  I had my whooping cough jab as well which was thankfully not too bad and we are all set for another delivery at the midwife led unit providing baby stays put until at least 37 weeks and things keep progressing well.

35 weeks pregnant, 35 week update, 35 week baby bump, baby boy bump

I am definitely finding myself more inclined to sit on the sofa in the afternoons that run around after the boys and they are watching more TV than I ever imagined, with a film going on most afternoons but I am finding the hormones make me extra stressed, especially when I am tired, and everyone seems happy with our new routine.  Every afternoon we curl up on the sofa and the boys fall asleep on me, their heads resting on their baby brother - hopefully we can find something more comfortable when he arrives!

Despite this pregnancy definitely getting harder as I get bigger, I am in no rush for baby pretzel to arrive.  I love my big bump, feeling him wriggle and imagining how he will look and who he will be.  I like having the right number of hands for children and our life as a family of four.  I am so excited for our new addition but he can stay inside a few more weeks.

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Wednesday 11 February 2015

The Baby Box Company Review

The Baby Box Company make lovely gift boxes for new babies and we were lucky enough to be sent one to review.  I chose the 'really useful' medium box as I loved the contents and it arrived beautifully packaged.  Unfortunately, I left the box, thinking I would photograph it in the morning when the light was better and two small boys found it first, so you don't get to see it looking lovingly wrapped but I can show you what is inside.

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Monday 9 February 2015

Us Three

There is not much time left as a family of four, as I head towards my due date at a rate I am not completely comfortable with, I know that my days with the two boys alone are numbered.  Preschool already takes two and working another one, giving us two days to do what we please, to not get dressed until lunch time, to go on adventures, to enjoy the quiet places whilst other adults are at work and other children at school.

These are the days we love, where we do things at our own pace, with no rush to be out the door, no set times to eat and sleep and usually quite a simple plan.  I like having a day close to home, to get things done, for the boys to play together as they love to do.  A day where we all nap on the sofa together watching a film and we do playdough, painting or baking.  On the other day, we love to get out, to stay out and to enjoy each others company. It doesn't have to be far, but it is usually outdoors and accompanied by a pushchair loaded with jumpers, scarves and hats.

Soon there will be an extra little person - probably in a sling or carrycot for most of ours days out, but with his own unique needs and plenty more snacking stops.  I like to think our days will carry on much the same, but the subtle changes may seem bigger when you are one and three.

I can't wait to see how a new baby changes things, but I love watching the boys the way they are too.  I hope they never lose the bond they have now, but I want Pretzel to be part of it as well.  

Archie is a bundle of mischief, he is fearless, an explorer and perfectly willing to cover his clothes in mud, but demands a wipe at the smallest speck on his fingers.  He is learning about the world and his language is changing every day as he puts more complex sentences together and learns new words.

Dylan is growing up fast, his interests are changing and Preschool is playing a big part in his life.  He wants to tell jokes and pull silly faces, but he also wants to be my baby and remind me that he is still only three.  He is excited about a new baby and so so curious and his memory amazes me when he talks about Archie being small with such clarity.

Together they are inseparable.  They love rough and tumble, playing games together, talking about everything and of course squabbling as only siblings can.  They ask for each other as soon as they wake up and they chat together as they fall asleep.  They understand that a baby is coming, and I hope they accept him into their little gang of two as well.

I am getting bigger and less able to throw them around at the park.  I am more tired than I want to be and get easily stressed.  They are learning how to look after me as I do my best to look after them and they are accepting my limitations as my tummy grows.

Together we are a three during the week, we navigate the world together, and let the bloke join in when he is home.  We are not yet complete, but we have our hands and hearts full already.

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Sunday 8 February 2015

Win a Secret Saviours Bump Kit

I am growing my third baby and you can tell.  With clothes it looks neat, but remove the layers and my tummy is covered in marks that tell a story of two little boys, who were not all that little.  The marks faded after a few months and rather than an angry red they are mostly silvery and not all that obvious, but always present.

With this baby, I have done something a little different.  Whilst adding in a few more isn't really the worst thing in the world (although I am not sure where there is space), I wanted to look after my growing bump as I know my body and skin are feeling the pressure of a third baby in as many years.  I took part in a trial with Secret Saviours to test their bump band and creams and I have made it to 36 weeks without adding to my stretch marks.  The band is unique in that it has pads on the inside that are proven to restrict the growth of stretch marks, and even more than that, I have found it helps me feel supported and stops that familiar back ache creeping in as my tummy gets bigger.

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Monday 2 February 2015

Cosatto Supa Racoon Riot Review

raccoon riot, Cosatto supa, supa raccoon review

I love colour and personality when it comes to things for the children and the gorgeous designs that Cosatto bring out are what first attracted us to their products over 3 years ago when Dylan was small.  We chose a little monster stroller for our little monster, and three years on it is still going strong.  We were offered the chance to try their newest stroller recently, the Supa and it has all the great features we love from our old stroller, but with so many more too.

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