Tomorrow I will be 21 weeks pregnant and thought I would just do a little update on how I am finding everything.

Weight gain:
I don’t weigh myself on principle, but I am slightly dreading being weighed at my midwife appointment on Monday. Last time, at 16 weeks, I had put on 4kgs since becoming pregnant. I put that down to stopping running at around week 7/8 and one of my early symptoms which was having to eat every hour! The midwife said my weight gain should probably slow down after that, but I feel like I’ve been eating like a horse!

Maternity clothes:
I’m mainly wearing the ones I was given by a friend from school – lots of comfy jeans! I like the over bump ones best, but bought myself a pair of jeggings from Sainsburys yesterday as they are quite thick and look like proper jeans, as well as being quite smart. But they have a lovely stretchy waistband – perfect!

Stretch marks:
None yet. I’m using the Palmers cocoa butter stretch mark cream but I don’t know how good it is. Might have a look after Christmas and see which others people recommend.

Sleep has been fine until the last couple of days. I find I’m quite uncomfortable when I go to bed, then wake up at about 4am and can’t sleep again for at least an hour. I’m having to pee in the night now too which I’ve never had to do before.

Mostly dog-walking. Although saying that, I feel like I am doing myself down, as it’s hardly a dog walk and more of a dog march! I keep meaning to go swimming. I definitely will next week. I have been walking for about 45 minutes FAST each day, and really enjoying this. It’s no substitute for running or riding, but it’ll do for now!

Best moment this week:
Of course the scan and seeing our little boy. Still can’t get used to saying ‘him’ rather than ‘it’! Also, feeling lots of movement and kicks – and Mark feeling them too. It really does make it more real.

Worst moment this week:
Having a Christmas dinner on Wednesday but feeling full after about a quarter of it. Since I had cooked it, I ploughed on to the end, but it wasn’t as enjoyable as I had hoped and that was really disappointing. I wish the baby would grow out a bit more as he’s clearly taking up a lot if room inside rather than pushing out into a proper bump!

Miss anything?
Riding my horse, mainly 😦 but also running.
And brie. And this week, with lots of Christmas celebrating, I’m really missing having a drink. I haven’t missed it at all up to now, but was quite jealous of friends this week!

Mostly in the evenings. Although when I was hungry the other day, the baby was really protesting and letting me know that he did NOT appreciate me leaving it that long between meals!

Food cravings:
Bacon. Actually any relatively unhealthy meat products like sausage rolls and bacon sandwiches yummm…

None really – other than having to pee more frequently and getting out if breath more easily.

Pretty good. I do have a quicker temper than usual though and get quite irrationally angry at Mark. This week I accidentally shut the car boot in Mark’s head. He (obviously) shouted in pain and I got really cross at him for shouting at me. Totally irrational. Crazy pregnant lady.

Looking forward to:
Christmas! And seeing my sister who lives in Palestine and I haven’t seen since the summer. Baby related – I’m looking forward to shopping in the January sales!

Excuse the wet hair and the mess – but here’s the (sort of) bump at 20+6!




And we are having…


…a boy!!

We’re over the moon. We would have been equally happy had they said ‘girl’, but we would have been considerably more shocked – we were both pretty convinced it was a boy. And he is! A beautiful healthy little boy.

There was certainly no question over the gender either – he’s not a shy young man and made it very easy to tell!

The scan was amazing. So detailed. We saw the valves of his heart, his kidneys, the different sections of his brain and even his lips and nose. He wasn’t jumping about quite as much as at the last scan, but towards the end he was sucking his thumb which was heart-melting stuff!

I can’t quite believe that (all being well) that’s the last scan we’ll have, so the next time we see him will be when we meet him! I can’t wait! Now we just need to start thinking a little more seriously about what he will be called…

Old Wives’ Tales

Mark and I are having a crisis of confidence this week. Since we discovered I was pregnant, we have been certain that we would find out the baby’s gender at the 20 week scan. It seems like everybody is determined to persuade us not to… so we need a little time to think and decide. We have until Monday!

When asked if I have an instinct, I always say ‘boy’. I have nothing to base this on, but saw a post on Baby Centre about old wives’ tales linked to gender and thought I would see what these predicted. The results are below!

You’re more likely to be carrying a boy if…

•Your baby’s heartbeat is lower than 140 beats per minute.

I have no idea. It sounded quite fast when I heard it at my 16 week midwife appointment, but I have nothing to compare it to!

•You’re carrying all out front.

Not really very obvious yet, but I would guess that it is pretty much ‘in front’.

•You’re carrying low.

Again, a bit early to tell, but I think it’s quite low down still.

•You’re blooming in pregnancy.

I don’t think so.

•You didn’t suffer from morning sickness in your first trimester.

This is true – I didn’t.

•Your right breast is bigger than your left.

Seriously? I think they’re pretty even…

•You look at yourself in the mirror for at least a minute and your pupils dilate.

I haven’t tried this – perhaps I should!

•You crave salty food or protein, such as cheese and meat.

Yep – bacon…mmmm….

•Your feet become cold more quickly than before you were pregnant.

My feet are always cold, but yes, I would say they get cold even more easily now.

•You tie your wedding ring to some thread, hang it over your stomach and it moves in circles.

Haven’t tried this as I don’t wear rings…and certainly don’t have a wedding ring!

•Your skin becomes dry.

Yes. Very much so.

•You combine your age at the time of conception with the number of the month you conceived and the resulting number is even.

Nope – it’s odd.

•Your hair has become more full-bodied and shiny during pregnancy.

Not that I’ve noticed – I have really fine hair so some body would be nice!

•The hair on your legs has been growing faster during pregnancy.

Not that I’ve noticed.

•You are more prone to headaches.

I have been getting a few more headaches than usual.

•Your pillow faces north when you sleep.

What?? I’ll have to try and work this out…

•You’re asked to show your hands and you present them palms down.

Odd question. Don’t think I’ve ever been asked to show my hands!

•You lie on your left side when sleeping.

Yep – or my back.

•Your urine is bright yellow.

Yes – it often is.

•You were the more aggressive partner during love-making when you conceived.

Haha. No comment!

•You eat a clove of garlic and the smell seeps out of your pores.

Haven’t tried this…but I looove garlic…!

•Your previous child’s first word was “dada”.

Being a first time mother, this is pretty irrelevant!

The result? 9/22 definite

You’re more likely to be having a girl if…

•Your baby’s heartbeat is faster than 140 beats per minute.

Again – no idea.

•You’re carrying all round.

Think it’s more in front.

•You’re carrying high.


•You’ve missed the “blooming” period altogether.

Yes – I was looking forward to it too…

•You suffered morning sickness during your first 12 weeks.


•Your left breast is bigger than your right.

Again – I’ll have to check!

•You look at yourself in the mirror for at least a minute, but your pupils don’t dilate.

Haven’t tried.

•You crave sweet things, such as juice, fruit and sweets.

Not really – I do have a sweet tooth and I get thirsty, so fruit juice is always desirable when I’m thirsty, but mostly it’s salty foods I want.

•You tie your wedding ring to some thread, hang it over your stomach and it swings from side to side.

Haven’t tried.

•Your skin is soft.

I wish it was…

•You are more moody than usual.

Not really.

•You’re asked to show your hands and you present them palms up.

I think I probably would.

•You were the less aggressive partner during love-making when you conceived.

Seems rather sexist, this one!

•You eat a clove of garlic, but you don’t smell of it.

Haven’t noticed…

•You combine your age at the time of conception with the number of the month you conceived and the resulting number is odd.


•Your hair has become thinner and dull during pregnancy.

I don’t think it’s thinner – just the same!

•You lie on your right side when sleeping.

No – eugh – hate lying on my right side!

•Your pillow faces south when you sleep.

I wish I was better at geography…

•Your urine is dull yellow.

Nope – it’s pretty bright. Sorry…

•Your previous child’s first word was “mama”.


Result? 3/20 definite

So it would seem that my instincts are supported by the old wives themselves! Now we just need to decide whether we are going to find out or not…

Maternity dresses – Pregnancy Week 20

I had a mild panic this weekend. My boyfriend had previously forgotten to inform me that an event we are going to tonight has a ‘black tie’ dress code. I don’t think it has to be especially glamorous, but it does require a dress. And that posed something of a problem!

Some of my tighter stretchy dresses do still fit me, but with the absence of a proper ‘bump’ yet and the fact that I simply look like I’ve eaten a big lunch, I’m not feeling much like wearing figure-hugging dresses right now!

So I had to embrace the maternity-wear market and buy myself a dress. I simply don’t go to enough functions to make a really glitzy maternity dress worthwhile, so I wanted one that I could potentially wear even I school if I wanted to. There are no shops selling maternity-wear near me and I was too late to buy online… so I had to brave it and go to mothercare.

I was actually quite impressed. I got this dress for this evening’s Christmas do: (please excuse the mess and the lack of makeup!)


from Mothercare – £35

And I also it this one in a sale, reduced to £18. It will be great for school once I start getting bigger. Right now, I think it makes me look more pregnant than I actually am (not really the desired effect at school at the moment – until I’ve told my students!).


From Mothercare – £28 reduced to £18

So I’m pretty pleased. I’ll wait until the January sales to look for skirts/trousers for school as I’m kind of struggling to do mine up now so I shall soon have to admit defeat!





The Latest Plan (18+3 weeks)

From further research and some mighty helpful advice from my good friend Rachel at The Little Pip, I *think* I might have found the pram I want. I know it seems silly to be wanting it finalised now, but I really need a good idea before sales start in January. I also have a feeling that next term (I’m a teacher) between January and April, is going to fly by. Spreading the cost before maternity pay misery kicks in will be vital.

So the verdict – for well over a week now (!), I have had my mind set on one pram – which is impressive. I had previously been changing my mind daily. Sometimes several times a day.

I ruled out the Bugaboo Camelion in the end, as a) I didn’t think the wheels would stand up to the sand and grass at the stables, and b) as Rachel pointed out, I wouldn’t get a warranty buying second hand.

So it has to be a new one. And it has to have tough wheels. As I said in my last post, it also has to work with a carrycot and car seat too, and be small enough to pack into the boot with lots and lots of other stuff. That’s another mark against the Camelion.

I came across the Baby Jogger brand randomly on the Baby Centre forum on my phone. Initially, I looked at the Baby Jogger City Elite, as it looks great for off road and looks huge so can last the baby for years.

City Elite

But reviews said it was really heavy and quite big when folded. I also wondered how sensible it was to go for one that is primarily an off-road pushchair. Surely I will be doing most of my pushing on smoothish surfaces and will probably use a baby carrier for any more exuberant walking… so do I really need huge (heavy) all-terrain wheels?

So a little delving on the Baby Jogger website led me to stumble across the Baby Jogger City Mini GT. It’s small when folded, ridiculously easy to fold (from what I can see on YouTube reviews), easy to push and steer, has all-terrain wheels but they’re small and compact, has carrycot adaptors, car seat adaptors…and pretty much everything I wanted really!

My first issue with it was that it only faces forwards, so when using it in its pushchair mode you can’t interact with the baby, but then the carrycot and car seat both face backwards so if I am really worried to begin with, I could use those. Also, I read in a book about a woman who had paid a fortune for a swivel seat so it could face either way and the baby screamed and screamed if it couldn’t faceforwards and see the world!

City Mini GT

It does have a HUGE seat and I think a newborn baby might look a bit swamped to begin with, but then I found one of these – it’s a Diono Cuddle Soft – and decided that would be fine. The seat lies flat, so it does say it’s suitable for a newborn.


I really can’t find many faults with it. I haven’t found anywhere to try it out yet, as there aren’t many shops that stock it – it’s often an online exclusive with most of the main brands. I think some shops have the City Mini standard (not the GT) and all that’s really different is the wheels, so I could probably try one of those.

We went to Mamas and Papas on Sunday, after I had seen this Baby Jogger online, and I couldn’t see anything that was as suitable for us. I still LOVE the Bugaboo – particularly the Buffalo with its huge chunky tyres… but seeing someone being shown how to put it up and down made me very nearly laugh out loud – it’s ENORMOUS! And fiddly to put up. And bloody expensive.

So I’m pretty happy at the moment with my choice – I have yet to see anything I like more, and I feel like this might be the answer to the conundrum. I’ll keep you posted!