Keira’s 17 Month Update

Where has this last month gone? It feels like it was only yesterday  I was writing Keira’s 16 month update (although I am aware I said the exact same thing in my pregnancy updates ha!). So Keira turned 17 months on the 29th of May, not too long ago, but I can’t believe she’ll be one and a half years old soon!!

Her favourite things to do at the moment are walking around with her eyes closed. She’s obsessed with doing and she’ll walk around the living room with them closed, she may have walked into a wall a few times. She also loves hiding under her blanket or the bed covers. If you leave the room and she hears you coming back in, she’ll run for her blanket and hide underneath it while saying “shh”, it’s so cute! She’s also discovered how to open the velcro on the back of toys, so now she has to open the back of every toy possible and leave them open.
Keira loves putting her shoes and socks on. She isn’t able to actually put her socks on but she’s become a pro at putting her shoes on, as well as putting them on other people’s feet. If she sees a shoe she’ll try and put it on your foot and doesn’t give up until it’s on and stays on!
Keira’s speech is coming along now and she’s picking up on new words often now. She can say “shh”, “cheese”, “goat” except it sounds more like “gahh”. I’m sure it won’t be long before she’s stringing together many other words and starting sentences.
Keira is aware of where her head is, if you ask her where her head is she’ll put her hands on her head. We’ve been trying to teach her belly but she still puts her hands on her head. If Keira hurts herself, like if she bumps her head, she’ll hold wherever she hurts. Like if she bumps her head, she’ll hold her head to let you know that’s where it hurts. Its very cute.
Keira’s sleep is getting much better, she sleeps through most of the time now. There is probably one or two nights out of the week where she’ll wake up for a bottle but it’s generally getting better. Food is still a tricky one and she’s still as fussy as ever but I’m sure we’ll get there eventually.
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35 Week Pregnancy Update | Baby #2

It’s that time of the week again and once again I’m posting late, I turn a new week every Sunday and I enjoy a relaxing Sunday far too much! However, here it is! My 35 week update
There isn’t much to report on, it has been a fairly quiet week in terms of pregnancy. My heartburn and SPD have been horrendous though, I can barely lie down any without acid burning through my throat and then when I try to sit up to help relieve it my SPD kicks in causing agonising pain to my pelvis. Definitely a lose lose situation.

I’ve been having a lot of pressure down there from baby’s head which (this is probably going to be TMI) is giving me the urge to empty my bowels several times a day, although it always results in nothing actually coming out.
I’ve been getting a lot of hot flushes too. I can’t remember having these with Keira but I’m pretty sure I did. They seem to come out of nowhere though and I become a right mess when they do arrive. I’m forever sitting by the open window! Overall though, I’m feeling pretty good in myself and I’m counting down the days till my due date, secretly hoping baby comes just before!
If you remember from my last post, I was waiting for the midwife to come out for a follow up appointment regarding my fundal measurements as I was measuring over the 90th percentile line. Well she came out, everything was going smoothly in regards to my blood pressure and urine. She measured my bump and I measured just below the 90th percentile line this time. The midwife said it was routine to refer for a growth scan if a measurement crosses a line, whether it’s up or down so we had a scan booked in for Monday afternoon.
At the scan we got to see baby again and almost decided to ask the sonographer if she could tell us baby’s gender but we didn’t and we still don’t know! The scan went great though, baby is measuring just under the 50th percentile line and weighs around 5lbs 5oz which is on track for this stage of pregnancy. So we have nothing to worry about and it looks like we won’t be having a big baby after all! We have to go back in 2 weeks time so that they have something to compare it by but Darren keeps saying that he wants to know the gender now so I’m trying to convince him that finding out the gender at 37 weeks is going to be pointless!

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Controversial Parenting Tag

Parenting isn’t the easy of tasks but there are always certain areas that spark debate, all of the opinions are my own and I don’t judge another person’s parenting choices as long as it’s safe!
1. Pro-life Vs. Pro-choice
I definitely feel as though I am pro-choice. I believe a woman should have the choice as to what happens to her body but I do not agree with using abortion/termination as a form of contraception. If you feel pregnant because you were too idiotic to get birth control/contraception than you should not use an abortion to fix that. I do believe that there are a lot of reasons as to why a woman would get a pregnancy terminated and I can’t imagine it being an easy path to choose but I don’t believe that it should be taken away from a woman’s choice.

2. Baby Wearing
I love the idea of baby wearing. I didn’t know much about it when Keira was younger, but I did have a carrier and I did use it from time to time. If I’d have known more about wraps, slings and various other carriers than I would have definitely used them and saved my arms from carrying her all the time! I have purchased a wrap for baby number 2 and I do plan on baby wearing most of the time as I believe that it will make life so much easier with a newborn and a toddler.
3. Circumcision
I don’t actively agree with circumcision, unless it is medically necessary, but I understand that it is incorporated into a lot of religious beliefs, I just know that it isn’t something that would benefit us if we were to have a son.
4. Adoption
I can’t see why anyone would be against adoption. I think it’s amazing that we have a system that is able to help children go to loving homes and be given a life that their birth parents don’t think they could have given.
5. Baby Piercing
I’m not for baby piercing but I wouldn’t bash you for getting your baby’s pierced. I would never pierce Keira’s ears until she was able to ask me herself and understand what was going to happen. A piercing isn’t a fashion statement, it is a body modification and it can go horribly wrong.
6. Breast Milk Vs. Formula
I don’t have a problem with either. I formula fed Keira, for my own personal reasons, and I am choosing to try breast feeding with baby number 2, I even bought a breast pump so I can at least express. I think that women that do exclusively breast feed are wonderful, as are the women that chose to use formula for whatever reason.
7. Spanking
I choose not to spank Keira and I won’t be using it as a method of discipline in the future. If that’s what you to choose to do and it works than fab, but it just doesn’t suit us. As far as discipline goes, we use a stern no a couple of times and then if that doesn’t work I’ll do a slow count to three. I rarely get to three as Keira normally listens by two but if I do have to get to three then I just move her away from wherever or whatever and continue doing that until she stops whatever she was doing.
8. Co-sleeping
I am definitely for co-sleeping as well as bed sharing. I bed shared with Keira until she was about 12.5/13 months. She was a terrible sleeper and would wake 4 to 5 times a night so it was more practical to have her in with us. It didn’t take us long to realise that she was possibly waking from us disturbing her through the night, Darren is a very loud snorer, so we tried her in her own room and she slept great only waking once, which she does now, but we will definitely be doing it again with baby number 2.
9. Home Vs. Public Vs. Private Vs. Charter Schooling
I really don’t think it matters how your child gets an education as long as they have the opportunity to. If you can afford to send your child/children to private school than fab, if you can’t and your child/children go to a public school that’s just as fab and if you have the time and patience to home school that is also fab!
10. Vaccinations
I am 100% for vaccinations. Keira got all of hers and I intend on getting baby number 2 all of their jabs. I wouldn’t know what to do if my children got poorly from one of the diseases if I chose not to vaccinate. The pros definitely outweigh the cons.
11. Medicating Children
I don’t have a problem with this, if your child needs medicine to help make them feel better than there’s nothing wrong with that. We take painkillers when we have an ache or pain so why would you deny your child/children the same relief? I don’t automatically reach for the calpol every time Keira shows a sign of teething, luckily she isn’t a sicky baby and has only ever had 2 colds which didn’t need any medicine, I normally use calpol as a last resort if the other options haven’t worked.
12. Cloth Vs. Disposable
I absolutely love the idea and look of cloth nappies/diapers, I think they are so cute, I just don’t have the stomach to clean a poopy nappy and it’s this reason alone as to why I choose to use disposables.
13. Cry It Out
This is a very controversial topic and I’d rather get into it too much, but in simple terms it isn’t something that suits us. I have heard stories from other parents that have used various different forms of CIO, such as sleep training, and they say how it worked wonders for them but for me the sound of my child crying out for me is just heartbreaking enough and that is why I will never choose to use that method on any of my children.
As I said from the start, these are purely my opinions and are what I find works best for us as a family. I would not consider you as a bad parent if your opinions were different to mine mainly because every child/parent is different and different things work for different people!
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34 Weeks Pregnancy Update | Baby #2

It’s that time of the week again except this one is going out a bit late, 2 days late in fact oops! I’ve not had a bad week but it’s been a bit different!
The past week started off as normal, the odd heartburn and the usual SPD symptoms, come Wednesday the baby decided that they no longer wanted to play ball and spent pretty much the whole day being quiet and having minimal movement. I didn’t feel worry and my instinct wasn’t telling me to panic so I brushed it off as a lazy day. Thursday came and the movements had got a lot more quieter, I’d not felt one movement all morning. I’d text Darren to see if he could get the day off work so that we could possibly go to labour and delivery to get things checked out. As the afternoon approached I’d felt 4 movements in total but nothing that was strong and obvious. I decided to have a cup of tea and see if that would help, this baby is a tea lover already and tea always makes them have a wiggle, but there was nothing so I gave it an extra half hour before I rang delivery suite. They weren’t concerned as I’d felt some movements, as well as hiccups just moments before, but they did express just how busy they were (a 3+ hour wait!!!) and explained that if I was worried or the movements stopped completely then I was more than welcome to go in. As soon as I was off the phone, the little monkey decided they’d had enough quiet time and all was back to normal.

Braxton hicks are still playing a major role in day to day activities and they do feel as though they get stronger daily but still nothing to ever worry about. I get a lot of pressure downstairs and my bladder cannot hold even the smallest amount of pee any more! Hot flushes are a pain and I’m forever left feeling like a sweaty mess, it just is not pleasant at all!
I have my follow up midwife appointment this coming Friday and I’m so nervous about it but I feel confident that everything will be okay and my plans for a natural home birth will still be allowed!
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What’s in Baby’s Hospital Bag | Baby #2

I remember the time I was pregnant with Keira and I was desperately searching YouTube for a video on what essential items I needed to pack for the baby during our hospital stay. Fortunately I didn’t excessively over pack with Keira and having done it all before I knew what essentials I would need for our stay. As mentioned in previous posts, my plan is to have a home birth but it always helps to be prepared and have a hospital bag packed just in case!

So this is my new changing bag and what I’ll be using to pack the baby’s hospital items in. It is the Babymoov Baby Chic changing bag and it is currently priced at around £45, (here is the Amazon link: Babymoov Baby Chic Changing Bag). It comes with loads of hidden extras, like a wet bag, perfect for when you’re out and about and need to store wet clothes or dirty nappies. There is also a lovely, soft fleece blanket. It also comes with an insulated bottle holder (enough room for one bottle) and a dummy holder (can squeeze two or three dummies in). My favourite part of the bag, an external changing mat. It is attached to the front of the bag and easily detaches with two clips. It’s a large mat and even has a pocket for you to add a few nappies or wipes instead of digging through your bag for them!

Three muslin squares. I chose these over bibs, with Keira also, as they were much easier to use. It always seemed like such hassle to try and get a bib around a newborn but it was much easier to place a muslin square under their neck to catch all that milky dribble.
Four pairs of scratch mittens and a hat (still on the hunt for second hat). The scratch mittens are in two different sizes as I much prefer the smaller mittens over the bigger pair.
Four vests. Two plain white that are sized newborn (up to 7lbs) and two white with a small design that are sized up to one month (10lbs).
Twelve newborn (size one) nappies. I have the Mamia by Aldi range which we have used throughout with Keira and found them to be fantastic. They recommend twelve nappies in a twenty four hour period so this should be plenty.
Three bottles of Aptamil first milk, premade formula. I do plan to try breastfeeding but if that doesn’t work then at least I know I have the formula just in case. I won’t be taking bottles as they won’t be sterile for long. Many milk companies do produce a starter pack (see link: Aptamil Starter Pack) however these are rather pricey and our hospital recommended not using them as the teats are only sterile for one use and the baby won’t drink a full bottle straight away so you’ll be wasting milk as it’ll be thrown after use. Our hospital, however, do provide plastic sterile bottles and packaged sterile teats, which are perfect for one use, so if need be, we will be using these little cartons instead as they are only 80p per bottle and you can reuse them.
One pack of Water Wipes. I have heard many great things about these wipes, they are supposedly perfect for those who cannot stand the feel of cotton wool, like myself. They are meant to be 99.9% water and 0.1% fruit extract which is much better than using normal baby wipes when it comes to nappy changes for a newborn.
Two sleepsuits. These were bought from Next after we had our first scan with Keira. They are both sized First Size (up to 7lbs) and Keira wore both. They both have the built in scratch mittens too. 

Another sleepsuit, sized up to one month (10lbs), and this one doesn’t have the built in scratch mittens, but it’s always handy to have clothes in both a smaller and bigger size as there is no 100% accurate way of knowing what your baby will weigh until they are born.
Finally, we have baby’s first outfit and blanket. Just a simple white and yellow striped sleepsuit with a lion printed on, with a matching blanket.
So that is what I have packed in the changing bag ready for our little bundle to use. I hope this is helpful for you when it comes to packing your own!
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