Monday, 2 March 2015

I HATE pregnancy...and that doesn't make me ungrateful!

There....I said it.

This is something that's been playing on my mind for the last 7 months....and played on my mind for the whole 9 months that I carried Tyne.

I HATE being pregnant.


There's no aspect of actually being pregnant that I enjoy, apart from the very end result of actually being rewarded with a baby.

The problem is....I always end up feeling guilty when I admit that's how I feel.

As though it somehow makes me a bad mother or a bad person.

As though my dislike of the pregnancy itself somehow insinuates a dislike for the baby I'm growing.

Well let me just clarify - that is not the case at all.

I LOVE being a mummy, I love my son very much and I can't wait for his baby brother to be born.

Infact it can't come soon enough for me!

I'm so looking forward to having a newborn again, and so excited about watching another lovely little boy grow up.

But does that mean I have to enjoy the experience of growing a human? doesn't.

My hatred of pregnancy is also not disrespectful to women who are unable to carry children, or women who tragically lose babies - I have every sympathy for those women and I AM very grateful to be able to have children - my lack of enjoyment of being pregnant doesn't take away from that.

But sometimes, feeling this way about pregnancy makes me feel very much like the odd one fact more than that, it makes me feel like a bit of a freak!

All I see is pregnant women talking about how wonderful the experience is, how they love feeling every movement from their unborn baby, how they adore being pregnant....

All I can think is....I want some of whatever they're taking!! 

Whatever this magical pregnancy hormone is that makes women enjoy this experience is clearly not something my body is producing!

Pregnancy for me is horrific.

During both pregnancies so far, I have spent the entire first trimester and most of the second trimester suffering from hypermesis gravidarum.

This is not just "Morning sickness" - this is constant, all day long sickness which can last from a few weeks to the entire length of your pregnancy.

I have been fortunate in that mine didn't last for the entire time - it eased away at 28 weeks with Tyne, and thankfully with this pregnancy it eased away at 17 weeks.

But it is a LONG TIME to spend feeling constantly sick to the pit of your stomach, with every scent and everything that passes your lips inducing more nausea - with constant throwing up from the moment you wake up right through the night. 

With bouts of vomiting so sudden and violent that you fear going out in public incase you don't make it to a bathroom in time.

Following on from the stage of the hyperemesis eventually passing, I have been hopeful each time that perhaps I would be fortunate from there on in and be able to "enjoy" the remainder of my pregnancy like other women do.

But no such luck.

When I enter the third trimester, on both occasions I have been hit by gallstones - it is BEYOND COMPREHENSION how painful gallstone attacks can be - people liken the pain to suffering a heart attack and say that it is worse than labour -  once again I spend my days unable to eat anything, throwing up and suffering from awful diarrhea. 

With Tyne, this lasted until just after his birth - and with this baby it's been even more complicated as I seem to have developed numerous food intolerances and Drs can't decide if my problem is gallstones or celiac disease - I haven't had a single day in the past month that I haven't spent at least part of throwing up, having diarrhea or feeling too ill to get out of bed. The list of foods I can eat is dwindling by the day as I have developed intolerances to wheat, barley, rye and lactose. I'm also having to remain on a low fat diet incase it is actually my gallbladder causing the issues.

And so perhaps now it's becoming more clear why I hate pregnancy so much -  for some women, women like me, it is 9 months of constant vomiting, illness, pain and upset.

Then there's all the worrying - I am anxious person anyway and my anxiety becomes much worse during pregnancy - throw into the mix all of the illness and I spend my time constantly worrying about what effect all of this is having on the poor baby.

So no...I do NOT love pregnancy.

I do not love any of the accompanying side effects of pregnancy - the insanely itchy nipples that crack until they bleed, the hemorrhoids, the inability to walk up a flight of stairs without being out of breath, the need for someone else to tie my shoe laces, the clumps of hair falling out....I don't even enjoy feeling the movements because 9 times out of 10 I find them REALLY painful.

So please don't judge me or other women like me ... pregnancy is not always such a magical experience, even when the baby is very much wanted and loved.

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Are More Women Turning to Mummy Make Over’s?

Pregnancy is an extraordinary period in a woman’s life as her body prepares to bring a child into this world. But the physical changes, like weight gain and stretch marks, which occur during pregnancy and with breastfeeding can remain and be a cause for persistent concern to the mother. Why is pregnancy a natural “tissue sweller?” And what can be done to treat these issues? From the skin to the breasts, Dr Lanzer explores some science below.

During pregnancy, the growing child requires more and more room within the mum’s womb. The uterus expands as the child grows, and in turn the belly grows and stretches the skin. Simultaneously, the breasts begin to expand in preparation for milk production and breast feeding.

Skin, the largest organ in the human body, is essentially elastic and can stretch to a limit. This constant stretching occurs during pregnancy and creates more skin. Beyond this limit, “Stretch Marks” occur and represent an irreversible breakage of dermal components (natural constituents within the skin). The degree to which stretch marks occur varies in women, depending on their specific skin quality together with genetics.

Naturally, like all elastic materials, there is some “recoil” of the stretch of skin after the stretching force (especially with pregnancy and breast feeding). The amount to which the skin returns to its pre-pregnancy state also varies. A lot of the time, women after childbirth are left with at least some excess skin in the lower abdomen with or without stretch marks. The breasts, which expanded during breast feeding, appear ‘deflated’ and droopy because their internal supporting structures have also been stretched beyond their limit. These changes can be intensified by multiple pregnancies and childbirths. Dr Lanzer, an Australian Leading Cosmetic Surgeon does a revolutionary breast procedure called Breast Augmentation. Dr Lanzer also performs a Breast Lift which can reshape the ‘droopy’ and sagging appearance of the breasts following pregnancy and breast feeding. Excess skin is eliminated, and the residual skin is tailored to drape aesthetically to the underlying breast tissue. The nipple, which often appears to be hanging on the lower pole of the breast, is ‘lifted’ to a more natural and aesthetically attractive position. A breast lift won’t make the breast larger, but sometimes the reshaping does provide an illusion of a bigger size. In order to add more volume, some patients choose a simultaneous augmentation with a saline implant that can make the breasts appear even fuller and larger.

The ‘additional’ skin, stretch marks and overall ‘deflated’ appearance of the abdomen and breasts cannot be removed by exercise. Remember, exercise and weight loss decrease fat content, unfortunately some women are still left with a quantity of excess skin. To eliminate this excess skin and correct its droopy appearance, the skin must be surgically eliminated and re-tailored to adapt naturally to the underlying tissue. An abdominoplasty or ‘tummy tuck ‘ which includes removing the excess skin and fat of the lower abdomen. It also involves combining the tissue covering‘6-pack’ of abdominal muscles.

Remember, everything about the belly stretches during pregnancy, and this includes the muscles. Finally, selective liposuction of the flanks and hips can further enhance the result in the right candidate. The overall result is a flatter, more attractive tummy with a fine line scar that can be hidden within the bikini line. The surgery is itself outpatient, and all patients are able to walk the same day.

There are a variety of alterations to the procedures described above which can be selected according to the individual patient’s physical appearances and objectives.

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Sunday, 1 March 2015

Knorr Product of The Year Recipe Challenge!

I was recently asked to take part in a blogger challenge by Knorr, as part of their celebrations for winning first place in the Product Of The Year Sauce & Seasoning category!

I was kindly provided with a range of Knorr's fantastic Flavour Pots, some lovely fresh ingrediants and a supermarket voucher to purchase any extras and challenged to come up with the best home cooked recipes I could incorporating the Flavour pots!

I like my cooking to be easy and tasty...So here are the two simple recipe's I came up with!

You Will Need:

*2 x Chicken Breasts
*1 red Pepper
*Diced Chorizo
*Knorr Garlic Flavour Pot
*Cherry tomatoes
*Chicken stock pot
*1 Yellow pepper
*Flat leaf parsley
*Basmati rice

1) Cut peppers into slices, chop the parsley, halve the tomatoes..  Chop the chicken into chunks

2) Boil 600ml of water with the chicken stock pot

3) Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a frying pan, season the chicken and add to the pan until brown - remove and put to the side

4) Add the peppers and tomatoes along with a further 2 tbsp of oil and cook until softened. Add half of the Knorr Garlic pot, a tsp of rosemary leaves and the chorizo.

5) Cook for around 4 mins, add the rice and parsley and cook until the rice absorbs the oil.

6) Add the chicken and the chicken stock, stir ad then reduce heat and leave to cook for 15-20 minutes until liquid has soaked up.

7)Once liquid has soaked, remove from heat, cover with a tea towel and leave to rest for 5 minutes.

Serve with parsley and a wedge of lemon and Enjoy!

Mushroom Strogonoff

You Will Need:

*1 pack of button mushrooms - washed and sliced
*1 onion - diced
*1 Knorr Three Peppercorn Flavour Pot
*Olive oil
*1 garlic clove, sliced
*200ml Single cream

1. Lightly fry the mushrooms and onion until golden

2. Add the garlic and fry for a further 30 seconds or so, taking care not to burn

3.Add the Knorr flavour pot, combine well

4. Remove from heat and add the cream, stirring well

5 Return to the heat until heated through, serve with rice and side vegetables of your choice!

Have you tried these handy little Flavour pots? Do let me know if you have any favourite recipes to use them in!

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Saturday, 28 February 2015

Bingo - A Great Choice Of Home Entertainment

When you have young kids, you spend a lot more time at home that you did before they were born. It’s a natural progression – when the baby first arrives, you’re generally so exhausted by the whole experience and lack of sleep that nights out are simply out of the question. Of course, when you get settled into a kind of routine, then you can have the odd night out here and there, but to be honest, for many mums there’s less motivation to go out than there used to be.

Having kids at home, you’ll probably be happier to stay in and be around if they need you, and that doesn’t really ever change. Family time becomes more important than spending time with friends and going out to the cinema, theatre etc. Of course, life is a balance and you’re bound to want some time just with your partner or your friends now and then, but for the majority of the time, most evenings will be spent at home.

But as you settle down into a routine with the kids, you’ll find that you have quite a few hours when they’re in bed and you’re not. So it’s good to have an alternative to watching the TV every night – that can get really old really quickly! Having the internet at home is a real boon – there’s a world of entertainment at your fingertips.
One of the best ways to unwind and chill out in the evenings online is to play bingo online - comparison sites like Great British Bingo are ideal for helping you to get the best out of the experience!

If you’ve never played bingo, you may be wondering what the appeal is. There are many online options that offer affordable and practical games. You’ll see that playing bingo is not only a lot of fun, but it’s also very easy and cheap to play. In fact, it’s often better than cheap – it can be free, even though there are real cash prizes to play for. Once you’ve opened a bingo site account and placed a deposit, you’ll then be entitled to play the free games on the bingo schedule.

The great thing about online bingo is that it requires very little effort. All you need to do is decide which game to play and how many tickets to buy. The game then goes through by itself – you can choose to watch your ticket and see how you’re doing, or go into the chat rooms and strike up a conversation with the other players. It can be quite good fun to watch the game as you chat and share the excitement in the chat room as someone gets close to getting bingo. It can happen to anyone, and it could happen to you the first time you play! 

Most people don’t think they’ll ever have a big win when playing bingo, they just play for the fun of it, so any wins would just be a great bonus to the amusement you get from simply playing the game!
Friday, 27 February 2015

My Lottery Luxury Wishlist!

Every now and then I like to distract myself from reality but imagining what I'd spend my winnings on if I was to win big on the lottery!

Of course in reality I've figured out that I'd actually not have a great deal once I'd given out shares to my family and put huge life-changing chunks away for Tyne and new baby, but's nice to dream isn't it?! And now you can play the lottery online at Lottosend there's no reason to forget to play like I so often do!

Here are my top 3 Luxury Lottery Wishlist Items!

1. A beautiful home - in 4 places!

I think most people's top coveted lottery win purchase is a new home, but with us having roots spread so far and wide I could never choose just one place to settle!

I'd love to be able a beautiful big "Main" home here in Devon close to the seaside.

I'd also want a holiday apartment at the glamorous Kings Docks in Liverpool so that we could visit my family whenever we wanted, and I know that Jon would love an apartment in his native Newcastle too!

I'd also want to have a little apartment in London so that we could visit the capital whenever we wanted, and I could attend more of those lovely blog events without having to worry about where to stay!

2. Household staff!

I know it sounds so lazy but I don't care...if I could afford it I would absolutely LOVE to employ a cleaner so that I would never need to stress myself about the bathroom looking messy again, a private chef so that we could delicious and healthy food every day without the need for cooking it ourselves, and a personal beautician and hairdresser to make me look as good as possible and give me a bit of pampering every morning! How I'd love to never have to wash my own hair again!

3. A world cruise!

A holiday would of course be my final wish, and nothing beats a cruise for me! I'd LOVE to go on a 3 month cruise taking in all the top sights of the world, and visiting as many countries as possible in the height of luxury!! Bliss!

What would be on your luxury lottery win wishlist?

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