28 July 2014

Review | Nursing Dress from Mum Me

As you may know, I am currently breastfeeding Aria. While I have found breastfeeding easy (a separate post on this will be up soon), I can't say the same for finding appropriate clothing! 

The current heat wave hasn't helped, and I have been on the hunt for some affordable items that are appropriate for this weather. In other words, clothes that don't mean I have to fully whip my boob out in public when I need to feed Aria!! 

I came across a website called Mum Me, which I have put a link to here. I actually found them while looking on EBay for nursing clothes, and decided to take a look at their website! 

The clothes there were much more affordable than the majority of other sites I looked at, so I decided to order this floral dress at an extremely affordable £20.99! 


 

The dress is made of a lovely light material but still feels really good quality. 

It comes with a little crop top with cut out shoulders and a drawstring waist so it can be used as a little coverup, or to flatter a pregnancy bump.

 

What I love most about this dress is the discreet acess for breastfeeding. The front panel is separate to the rest of the dress, wich easily parts around the boob area so not to overexpose yourself! I did breastfeed in public while wearing this, and you honestly wouldn't have a clue!


I really can't fault this dress, and I'm looking forward to making a few more cheeky little purchases from their site! 

Nicola xx


This is not a sponsored post. This was purchased with my own money and all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

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One Month Postpartum Update

Where has my teeny tiny baby gone?!

Aria is one month old today, and Tom and I can't believe how quickly time is going! She is really looking like a little person now, and it doesn't feel like she is a newborn anymore.


So a little about me... 

Body
I'm still about a stone off me pre-pregnancy weight, but I only want to loose about half a stone as I thin I was a little too thin before. I'm eating a good healthy mixture of foods... But may have over-indulged on the ice lollies recently! But I've decided it's totally fine since we are out walking so much with the pram! 

I'm getting used to having less sleep and thankful I'm naturally a morning person, so the early starts actually work best for me. 


Now into this little stunner! 

 

Height/Weight
We haven't had Aria weighed recently as the health visitor was really pleased with her when she came last week, so she will be weighed next week when we go to our local health clinic. I'll make sure to update when we do!

Routine
We are still trying to figure out a routine, but I think we have night/early morning down! Aria will go down around 9ish and that will be her until about 12/1am where she wakes for a feed. She will then wake again about 4/5am for another feed and go back down until 7ish, where we start our day. 

After this, we are still working out. The weather has been so hot recently that she's struggled to settle through the day, and according to Wonder Weeks she is going through her first leap, so this has lead to a few screaming matches on an evening before bed.

Sleeping
On a night, Aria will sleep anywhere between 3-5 hours. She only wakes twice a night and goes back down really quick, so we've been lucky to get some good nights sleep! 

Through the day, as mentioned, it can be varied purely because of the weather. She's a lot more alert now so likes to have a play/nosey for a couple of hours before going back down.

Feeding
She's been pretty snacky again recently and I think it's down to the weather. She usually feeds every 2/3 hours through the day and at night will only wake twice. I am still breastfeeding but express 1/2 bottles for a night, as she seems to sleep better when we can see she's had a big feed. She will have around 3.5/4oz in her bottle - little guzzler! 

Size
Aria is no longer in newborn clothes :( and is wearing her 0-3 month clothes now. Some are a little big, but they keep her cool in this heat! She is also in her size 2 nappies, which are still slightly big but the size 1's were getting a bit too snug. 

Milestones 
This month has seen so many milestones! She is smiling so much now, especially when I call her 'stinky bum'!! She's so alert and loves staring at faces, including her own! She also loves the canvas paintings we have in our living room. I think it's the dark background and metallic flowers that she really loves. 

 

She is so strong and has been able to hold her head up for short periods since day 2! She is starting to really love tummy time as she can turn her head from side to side and get a good look around. She's got really strong legs too and loves a good kick about! 

 

I think that's all from us for the one month postpartum update! I am going to do these monthly now, but will continue to blog about what we are getting up to throughout the month! 

Thanks for reading

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19 July 2014

3 Week Postpartum Update!

Hey everyone! 

So Another week, another update! I'm gonna say it again, these weeks are going scarily fast! Tom and I were just saying how we can't believe Aria is a month old next week.... She'll be 18 before we know it!

 

Recovery
I've been feeling a lot more like myself this week. The pains of labour have gone and I've started to get my strength and energy back... Even on the nights of little sleep!

Even though I've been feeling a lot more like myself, I feel like I've gone into hibernation a little. Tom is back at work now so I'm trying to get used to life at home with Aria myself... although my mum has been brilliant taking the afternoons off to help/keep me company. Apart from that, I feel like I've really wanted to limit visitors. Not that I don't love seeing my family and friends, but I feel like we've had a house full every day for the last two weeks, so I've really needed time to myself to get back to 'normal'. Has anyone else felt like that??
 
Body
I've noticed my tummy has gone down a lot this week. I think this May be due to how hungry Aria has been! Breastfeeding burns around 500 calories a day, so I think this has helped me lose a bit of the belly! I'm almost back in my skinny jeans, but I'm so much more comfortable in leggings at the moment. 
I got weighed at the doctors and have lost 2lb this week. I'm really happy with this, as I was told this is a healthy amount to be losing. I was a little worried about losing too much too quickly in case it affected my milk etc. but thankfully it hasn't!

I've not taken any 'belly' shots since having Aria, but if these are something you would be interested in seeing in these updates, let me know!
 
 
Now onto This little lady!
 


Height/weight
Aria was weighed on Tuesday by the health visitor, and we were really surprised at how much this little chunk has put on! She is now 9lb 5oz! That's 1oz over her birth weight! We were told that babies at this age are usually just a couple of oz over their birth weight, so the fact she's put on 1lb is crazy. She's not overweight in the slightest, it just means she is getting plenty of milk and growing really quickly. I have to say, I was really pleased that she's put on that much from solely breastfeeding *gives self a little pat on the back* :)
 
Routine
We are still trying to figure out Aria's routine. She has days where she will sleep forever! Like Wednesday where she slept from 12:00-5:30pm! And then there are times where she will just fight it for ages. We  giver her a top and tail wash every day, and she is bathed every other night. We do alternate baths of just warm water, and bubbles and hair wash. We were told not to use bubbles and shampoo in every wash, as it can really dry her skin. She absolutely loves the bath and a little pamper after with her lotions! 

Sleeping
As mentioned, it has been pretty varied this week. On a night, she is sleeping around 4 hours or so at a time, and wakes around 11/12 for her first feed and 3/4 for her second. This is totally fine with us, and Tom and I take turns with these so we both get some sleep too. When she is awake, it is for much longer now and she is usually up for 1-2 hours, unless she is having one of those moments where she just fights it! This can be 3/4 hours... Very exhausting! 
 
Feeding
I am still breastfeeding, and it's getting easier every day. I'm expressing two bottles a day which we use for her night time feeds, as we've noticed she sleeps better when she's had a big feed quicker, rather than on and off the boob for longer! We've started giving her Infacol before every feed, as on a night she seems to have trouble with wind. This is NOT the case during the day... My gosh this girl can pump! We've only been using it for a couple of days but it's made a huge difference already. 
 
Size
Aria is still in size 1 nappies, but has grown out of some of her newborn baby grows! She's a little too small for 0-3 month clothes yet, so her up to 1 month stuff is a much better fit. 
 
Milestones
We've noticed how alert Aria is becoming now, and is awake for longer periods, so we bought her a Fisher Price Kick 'n' Play Piano Gym, which she absolutely loves! I'm going to do a review on this soon, so keep an eye out if you are looking to get a play mat for your little on.



Fisher Price Kick 'n' Play Piano Gym
Another huge milestone is that Aria smiled for the first time!!! It was absolutely amazing, she has the cutest little grin! It makes the time she's awake so much more fun now we can see she is enjoying herself, and Tom and I are having little competitions to see who can make her smile the most. So far, we are pretty equal - we won't be singing 'Baby Got back' just yet! Haha.

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15 July 2014

Third Trimester Summary

This was written before having our little girl, but I never got round to posting!

I can't believe my pregnancy is nearing the end. I remember seeing those little blue lines like it was just last week!

 
The third trimester has definitely been the hardest physically, which to be honest was completely expected.

There have been lots of changes and new developments since my Second Trimester Summary post...


Shortness of breath. All your organs are nicely squished as baby is taking up lots of room, so it's no surprise that I have been running out of breath just by going up the stairs.

Leaky boobs. Yup, I said it. The first time this happened it's safe to say I freaked out a little bit. Thankfully mine haven't been too bad, but I do know some women who need to wear pads in their bra's at all times. Sorry for the TMI, but you need to be prepared for these things!

Swelling. Another fun symptom! I took my wedding ring off at around 30 weeks, because it was just getting too tight. My feet have definitely started to swell and my face has definitely got a little rounder too!

Sleeping. Ha, good luck with that! Invest in a pregnancy pillow, or even just the use of a flat pillow will make all the difference.

Contractions. I've obviously not experienced the 'real deal' yet, but I've had the odd Braxton Hicks and they definitely take me by surprise when they do appear!

Nesting. I can't tell you how much I have cleaned/tidied/organised since going on maternity leave. For me, it completely consumed every moment of my day! It's settled now and I am trying to enjoy my time to relax, but have the marigolds ready - you'll be surprised how quickly you turn into Aggie and Kim :)

Agility/Gracefulness. Say goodbye to these two, you won't be seeing them for a while! You'll know when you've hit this point when shaving your legs is like a suicide mission, or when you can no longer see your hoo-ha! You'll get that pregnancy waddle that makes you feel like you should be dressed as Pingu, and getting off the couch or out of bed becomes a 20 minute struggle.

Bladder control. You will spend about a quarter of your third trimester in the bathroom. You probably won't need to go, but that little bundle of joy you are carrying will press on your bladder like a squeeze toy.

That last loop on the emotional rollercoaster. Unless you have some sort of super powers, the last couple of weeks of pregnancy will be the hardest. You are so close to meeting your little bundle, but it feels like the longest wait ever. Make sure you have plenty to keep you distracted in those last few days, otherwise clock watching will become your newest hobby!


With all these wonderful symptoms comes the excitement of not only feeling the baby move, but seeing it too! If your little one is anything like my Baby J, it will be in early training to be a dancer/footballer/karate kid.


I've absolutely loved being pregnant, and can't believe it's almost over. But with that, we are finally going to meet our son or daughter - which makes me tear up at just the thought!


How have you found each stage of pregnancy? Has there been a best and worst moment for you?

Nicola xx


Copyright free image sourced from http://pixabay.com/, for free.
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14 July 2014

2 Week Postpartum Update!

Hello!

I have a feeling I am going to say this every week, but I can't believe Aria is 2 weeks old! Having a daughter is finally sinking in, and I am absolutely loving being a mummy.

Recovery
My recovery is still going really well. I've been feeling a lot more bruised this week from the stitches and just general pains from giving birth, so when we have been out the house I've had to make sure I don't walk too far or overstretch myself.

Body
My body feels like it is bouncing back really quickly! There is obviously a bit of weight to lose, but again this isn't a priority for me right now. I am making sure I am eating well and drinking plenty of water, but this is for breastfeeding benefits rather than for me!

As for Aria...


Those lips!

Height/Weight
Aria hasn't been weighed this week, but she will next week when the health visitor comes for her second visit.

Routine
It is still too early for a routine, but we are able to predict when Aria will be at her most hungry/restless/sleepy. She tends to wake around 5:30/6:00 where she will have a feed, and I usually keep her in our bed for a few hours sleep so we get plenty cuddles! She also tends to go down better in our bed at this time rather than back in her moses basket. She wakes again around 8:30/9:00 wanting another feed. This is when Tom and I take it in turns to shower and get ready for the day. She is usually quite alert and awake after this feed so every other day we will bath her, or we bring her down to have a little play in her bouncer until she dozes off again. Depending on her mood, she will wake for a feed every 2/3 hours from here until around 7, where she usually sleeps until 10. I then take her up to her moses basket and am in bed myself either flicking through Twitter, Instagram or YouTube, or getting a bit of an early night. She will usually go 4 hours before her next feed. We actually managed 10-4 the other night! This was amazing, but I did wake a lot just to make sure she was OK!

Sleeping
As mentioned above, Aria averages aroun 3/4 hours sleep at a time - sometimes even 5/6! Mummy and Daddy are very grateful for these nights :)



Feeding
Aria is still breastfeeding, and again as mentioned, feeds every 3/4 hours or so. She has had a couple of 'snacky' days, where she wants fed every 2 hours or so. I have found on these days she gets really bad wind - so I'm trying to keep her on the boob as long as possible so she gets a bigger feed and isn't just getting the foremilk (I think that's what it's called!).

On Friday I had my first experience breastfeeding in public. I was really nervous about this, but I actually felt quite empowered doing it! It's wonderful being able to breastfeed and thankfully I've found it quite easy. I just need to build my confidence a bit more about the public thing.

Size
Still in newborn/up to 1 month clothes and size 1 nappies. We have had her in a couple of 0-3 outifts if the weather has been really hot, so she is a bit cooler. The last few days has been 25 degrees and higher, so keeping her from getting too hot is challenging!

Milestones
We've noticed how alert Aria has become this week, and can tell she is really taking everything in. She absolutely loves kisses and I can tell she is trying her hardest to smile!

We also have had our first trips into town and out for lunch, which have gone really well. As I mentioned, I was nervous about breastfeeding in public so tried to take her once she had been fed, but the more we have gone out the more confident I am feeling about it.


And there you have our second week! Tom is back at work on Monday, and I have to say I am dreading this! Thankfully my mum is going to have some time off work and so some half days, so I can get used to being on my own. I have lots of family around that are more than happy to help, and a few of my neighbours have just had babies too so I know we can all visit for cuppas and have a good natter/vent if needed!

Thanks for reading :)


Nicola xx


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11 July 2014

Labour/Delivery Story

Hey everyone!

So, I've finally got round to writing my birth story!

I've tried my best not to ramble on too much, as the post was getting longer and longer by the minute! Hopefully you make it to the end... so grab a cuppa and enjoy :)

 

Thursday morning my midwife came to try perform another sweep, which sadly couldn't be done! Because of this, I was booked to have an induction on Wednesday, which would have been 13 days overdue. I felt a little sad by this, as I really wanted to go into labour on my own - little did I know what the next 24 hours would bring! 

Friday morning I woke with period-like pains. They weren't sore, just uncomfortable. I didn't want to get my hopes up, so I decided to continue my day as planned. Throughout the day, the pains continued and by tea time they were starting to get a little painful. I called the hospital just for some advice, and they said I could come in to get checked, but would more than likely get sent home. 

By 11pm the pains were getting stronger, and we're coming every 5-8 minutes, so we decided to head up just to see where we were at! I was checked over and was 2cm dialated, and they were able to perform a sweep to get things going. I was home by 1am and told to try sleep through the contractions and call when my waters broke. 

After finally drifting off, my waters broke at 3:30am! So we got back out of bed and made our way up to the hospital. I was checked over again and given some paracetamol, and they said I was able to stay in hospital while things progressed, rather than head home and come back when my contractions were further on. 

The morning and afternoon are a bit of a blur for me really! As the pain got stronger I used an exercise ball to lean on while on my knees, had a bath, and demanded more pain relief! I was finally given my first dose of meptid as well as some paracetamol and codeine, until around 4pm where I was told I was finally 8cm, and very close to meeting my baby! 

It wasn't long before I felt the need to push, and was given more meptid as well as gas and air. I remember drifting in and out between contractions, and Tom tells me I kept talking about the Boohoo website and what they had told me! Noooo idea where this came from! 

After a bit of pushing, they thought my contractions were slowing and they placed a drip in my hand in case I needed any help with bringing on the contractions, but by this point I was in the zone, and determined to get my baby out on my own! 

Not long after, I was told he/she had a head of hair, and when the head was almost out I was allowed to have a little feel! This gave me the focus I needed and a few pushes later our little girl was born at 7:23pm!!

As you can imagine, it was such a magical moment and Tom and I kissed and cried and instantly fell in love with your beautiful baby girl, who we have named Aria Lily, who weighed a chunky little 8lb 5oz. 

 
While Aria was placed on my chest, they tried to deliver the placenta. This was a little trickier than planned as my contractions had stopped, and there was brief talk of taking me into theatre. However, I managed to have a couple more contractions and deliver it fine. I also needed a couple of stitches, but nothing too major. 
I spent the night on the ward and after Aria proved she could latch on well and had a couple of dirty nappies, they were more than happy to let me go home by 11am. 

And there you have it! I think I covered everything, but it all seems such a blur to me! It was certainly painful, but the moment Aria was in my arms all the pain was forgotten, and every time we look at her we are filled with such love. She is the best thing that has ever happened to me, and I feel so lucky to have her and Tom. Maya is also loving being a big sister, and I can tell they are going to be great friends! 
Thank you for reading, and if you have any questions please leave me a comment in case there is something I haven't covered!!
Nicola xx
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6 July 2014

1 Week Postpartum Update!

Hi everyone! 

It is crazy to think I am writing Aria's one week update! 

It's been a busy week of visitors, kisses, cuddles, dirty nappies and sleepless nights! We've had some highs and lows, but it's been the most incredible week of my life and I feel so grateful to have such a perfect little girl, and the most amazing husband, family and friends.

I will get round to writing my birth story soon, but for now I will tell you a little about Aria and her first week. 





Recovery
Recovery has gone surprisingly well. I had a couple of stitches so was pretty sore from those, but by day 4 the pain had really eased off and I was able to move about a lot easier. Emotionally I did have those day 3 and 5 'baby blues', where I would cry at pretty much anything! That was the stage everything really hit home, and the sleepless nights and labour had caught up on me. Thankfully I have an amazing husband and mum, who allowed me to have some 'me' time and go for a bath while they made sure Aria was ok. I gave birth to Aria on Saturday night, and was allowed home Sunday morning as she was latching on really well and they had no issues with either of us. Some may think that's a bit soon, but I felt really good and was happy to head home with my little family!

Body
I'm really pleased with how my body has recovered, and I fitting back into my pre pregnancy leggings! Not quite jeans yet as there's still a good bit of jiggle, but I think that breast feeding has helped my tummy get back to a normal-ish shape. 

I weighed myself this weekend and am 15lbs off my pre-pregnancy weight, which I think is great! But to be honest, getting back in shape is the last thing on my mind right now. I'm making an effort to eat healthy, but that's more for breast feeding than my figure - that can certainly wait! 

As for Aria, here is a little about her first week in the world! 



Height/Weight
Aria weighed a chunky little 8lb 5oz when born, but I think most of that is in length! We haven't had her measured by the midwife, but we did it ourselves and she is around 20cm! She was weighed again on Wednesday (day 5) and she had only lost 30g of her birth weight! This is fantastic as it is the minimum amount of weight loss, meaning she is getting plenty from breastfeeding - a massive reassurance for me! 

Routine
As expected, we don't quite have a routine in place yet! But as first weeks go, she has been pretty regular with feeding every 3 hours or so, unless she is having a little hungry moment where it may be every 2 hours. We usually take her up to bed with us around 10:30/11 where she has a feed, and this can last until around 1/2 depending how hungry she is feeling! I will usually do this next feed, and Tom will do the next with one expressed bottle. We are going to keep this one bottle at night in our routine as she usually sleeps for 4 hours after it! It gives Tom some bonding time, as well as giving me a little sleep! 

Sleeping
As mentioned, Aria is waking around 2 times a night for a feed, but there has been the odd night she wakes up just a but unsettled. After speaking to my midwife, she did suggest using a dummy in these times, just to sooth her back to sleep if she is fed and has a clean nappy. I wasn't overly keen on this, but it really seems to help her - so if she is happy, we are! 

Feeding
Again as mentioned, I am breastfeeding but have introduced an expressed bottle to our night feeds, as it helps her to sleep longer. This bottle is around 3oz and she gobbles up the lot! She certainly doesn't have a problem feeding, and she latches on really well. I'm getting more confident feeding her in front of others too, rather than nipping up to the bedroom when we have visitors. 

Size
Aria is still in newborn and up to 1 month clothes, but as she is so long I can't imagine this being for much longer. She is also wearing size 1 nappies. We just use the Pampers range, which I cannot fault. 

Milestones
We had our first bath the other day which went great! There were a couple of tears at first, but I really think she enjoyed it! She will have another bath tonight so hopefully she will enjoy it just as much. Another milestone is her cord came off today! It was looking a little funky the other day, but my midwife checked it over and said it looked ready to come off, and it did with this mornings nappy change! 

We had our first outing today to the local village fayre. I was really nervous about taking her out, but we had such a lovely day and it was great to get out in the fresh air. She was good as good and even let us have a little vino at the pub!



I think that is all for our first week. I really appreciate all the lovely comments and tweets I've had from you all! Especially those tweets where I have needed a little vent about my worries - I love the blogging community so much because of the amazing support from readers and fellow bloggers :). Thank you for continuing to read about our life as a new little family, and I can't wait to see what week two brings! Hopefully I will have my birth story up next week, so keep an eye out for that. 

Nicola xx


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