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A bit of honesty.

Let’s just take a moment to talk about newborn photos. Yes, the gorgeous, squishiness of a new baby looks adorable in any photo but what about me?
What about me, the mum who now has a double chin from weight gain and a flabby belly from, well, the obvious. What about the bags under my eyes and the poor make up application because I had about 5 mins to do it in between screaming babies? What about my thinning hair, because I swear I’m going to go bald fairly soon?
People say “love your body”, “you look amazing”, “you’ve just had a baby, go easy on yourself”. The thing is, I don’t mind how I look! I actually think I look fairly decent but in photos with professional lighting that picks out ALL YOUR FLAWS, I look like a drug addict going cold turkey. Lighting like that should NEVER be allowed. I went in to the shoot thinking I looked nice. I went home thinking it was successful. Then the photos arrived. I literally could have cried. I know babies make you emotional, but still.
G man looks super cute. How couldn’t he? Have you seen him? Cuteness personified. M looks good. E looks mischievous. I look terrifying. I literally look like I’ve been up all night (I probably had) and hadn’t seen the sun, since, ever.
I’m sure most of you who have these shoots have gorgeous photos and love them.  In fact, I’m sure everyone who’s had a newborn shoot looks gorgeous with their bubbas. I however seem to be the exception to the rule. My pregnancy glow has well and truly gone. (debatable as to whether it actually ever came tbh)
Seriously. The fact that I had a double chin came as a complete shock to me. I was like “woooahhhh…I have chins. Plural.” Double chins are fine btw, just not on me. They do not suit me. As proven by this photo shoot.
I want a nice family photo of us all where I don’t look like a gutsy hobo Marc and the kids have taken in off the streets.
God damn you ice cream and milk shake cravings! (I don’t think these were actually legitimate cravings, maybe I was just being gutsy.)
To end, I would post a photo of myself from said photo shoot for you to see what I’m talking about, but no one deserves that torture, so have one of G man instead.

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Bribes, tantrums and cuddles.

When you wake up in the morning you have a decision to make. Do I do my hair and makeup so I actually look like a functioning woman who has her shit together, or do I leave it for the hundred other jobs I have to do today?
The latter usually wins out in my case.

We went for a walk yesterday and when we got back, I looked in the mirror. My ponytail had bits coming out everywhere from where George had pulled it out. I had baby sick all down one shoulder from an earlier burping incident and on closer inspection, the seat of my jeans had some yellowy stain on it. I’m assuming/hoping banana. Marc let me go out this. This is the norm for me now so he didn’t think anything of it. I’m glad I barely know anyone here. Jeeze.

So yes, every morning I have the option of getting up that little bit earlier whilst they’re all asleep so I can perfect my eyebrow arch, or sleep a bit longer and wake up in a panic to one child screaming and about to wake the other up, throwing on husbands joggers to find I have them on backwards but THERE IS NO TIME to put them on the right way and grabbing any top that’s nearby – usually covered in sick, snot, or dribble – or if you’re super unlucky, a combination of all three.

Today is one of the looking like a crazy person days. I’m praying one of them has a nap before the delivery man comes today so I can at least cover the dark pits underneath my eyes.

George just coughed sick INTO my mouth. My life ladies and gentlemen.

George is 5 months on Sunday. WTAF. He’s supposed to be my baby forever. How has this happened?
He’s so different to E as a baby. He doesn’t sit up (very well) yet or have any teeth but he loves grabbing things with his hands and playing with his feet. E didn’t use her hands till food was put in front of her. Priorities.
He’s a super chilled baby although he’s decided he likes to be held for the majority of the time. Who can blame him. I’d like to be carried around all the time if I could. My sling has been a Godsend but he’s getting a bit heavy for it now.
G is a proper little porker. He keeps flitting between the 75th and 91st percentile. I’m having to express twice a day so that I can give him a full bottle at bed time as well as a boob feed. Seriously. I hope this isn’t a sign of things to come or we’ll have to take out a loan just to feed him.
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Elizabeth, oh E, my little diva child. She is becoming more and more independent, if that’s even possible. I am not looking forward to the teenage years. For all her tantrums and strops, she’s actually been a little sweetie pie. She put all her toys away yesterday without being asked. It’ll probably never ever happen again. She’s been giving G man lots of hugs and kisses too which is lovely. Actually been mega impressed with her this week, we tried mackerel and calamari for the first time  – loved it! She did get extremely upset with me though when we ran out of fruit…..she kept listing them. “melon? apple? banana? ” at least she’s crying because it’s fruit and not over chocolate. The crying has taken on a new level though. Louder and shriller. I’m not sure if this is a result of M being away Monday to Friday or just a progression of the terrible twos.

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We had our first solo outing today! Only to Homebase to get some flowers to plant in the garden, but I’m counting it as a major achievement. Especially since I had to have E out of the pram and walking freely. It could have been a disaster. She could have decided to play hide and seek in the shop or just plain run off like she normally does but I was prepared. My secret weapon? Chocolate. Yes, I was one of those “I’m never going to bribe my child” childless women. Now I understand. You do not reason with a two year old. You can play to their good side, until they get tired, then BAM. Game over. The chocolate bribes come out and man do they work. I had to really stretch them out (because I’d already eaten the rest) but she was fab and was even happy enough to carry some pots for me.
When at the till, did she shout “CHOCOLATE” at me? Yes. Did I care that I was getting disapproving looks from the obviously childless people in the queue in front of me? Nope. I’d had a successful trip with two kiddies on my own. Nothing was bringing me down.

Anyway. It has taken me 10 hours, 2 cups of tea, a can of Pepsi , a bowl of ice cream (my lunch), two clothes changes and a short nap to write this. Hopefully it’ll be a bit quicker next time!

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Bring on the fun

If I thought updating was hard work after one baby, finding the time with two, I seriously don’t know how people do it. When I have a free moment, it’s my ice cream and catching up on trash TV time or “cleaning”. I do a lot of “cleaning” that involves me doing the laundry, then sitting on the bed and not being able to get back up. It’s a regular thing. The house is….lived in and well loved.

The little dude, Georgie Porgie, is 4 months now. He is such a chunk  He’s been piling on the pounds like no-ones business (clearly it’s all the ice cream I eat, so I obviously can’t stop now) and is currently, at 4 months, in his 6-9 month clothes. Seriously depriving me of my newborn baby stage, but he’s mega cute so I can deal.
He is a serious smiler, loves to coo and only really cries when he’s hungry. We thought we lucked out with Lizzie! He’s even more chilled out than she was. His sleeping pattern is pretty good too. It used to be 7pm – 5am but it’s just recently changed to 10pm – 5am (including a dream feed). Gross alert – he only poops about once every two weeks though so we get some serious poonamis when he does.
He’s just found his hands and loves to pick up toys and grab for things,  which Lizzie never really did till food was put in front of her at 6 months.
They look so similar but are so different already personality wise!
Elizabeth loves playing with him but has started to get a little more boisterous now. She is usually lovely and gentle but when she’s tired or frustrated she gets a bit more handsy and grabby.

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I’ve been trying SO HARD to keep up with the cleaning. Marc works away from home Monday to Friday so it is a lot trickier to juggle everything but for the first two weeks of his new job, you should have seen the place. Mrs Beeton and Delia would have proud. Jessica. Mother, wife, domestic Goddess extraordinaire. It was lovely waking up to a spotless house. However, Georgie’s bedtimes then got later and Lizzie decided she didn’t like sleeping at night. There is now an abundance of “I’ll do that tomorrow”piles and “Marc can do that” lists.

The last couple of weeks I’ve found particularly hard. Lizzie hasn’t wanted to nap or go to bed and has been up  late most nights. This means she’s basically miserable all day and a miserable Lizzie is mentally exhausting. It’s been a juggling act of dealing with one then the other etc. etc.
Also, because Marc is away during the week, only having a toddler who’s favourite word is “no” for conversation has taken it’s toll. By Tuesday evening I’d already had two breakdowns.
So, we (I) decided to have a change.
We went to a play group on Wednesday morning and then a soft play in the afternoon. I gave up on trying to clean the house constantly as I go. It wasn’t working so I left it all *gasp* ! On Thursday we went to toddlers play in the morning and spent the afternoon in the garden playing in the pool. It was the first time in days that I’d actually had fun with the kids. It was like a revelation and a guilty secret at the same time. Less time on the chores and more one to one FUN time with the kids makes a happy mummy and happy kiddies. It should be so obvious!
I’m petrified to take them both out further than the play groups on my own because of Lizzie’s occasional wild child twoligan tantrums but I’m going to attempt it this week. Hey, they say to do something every day that scares you – this will definitely be it for me!

I left Georgie (and Lizzie) for the first time ever this weekend with Nanny and Grandad. I’ve not even left him for more than ten minutes before so it felt very strange. I knew they would both be fine but I knew I would miss them (more than they would miss me!). It was my first night out in a year so I feel it was well deserved and long overdue but I was almost wishing at one point I wasn’t going. We went for afternoon tea and had a night out. I only knew the bride to be but the other ladies were fab and it made it a really enjoyable night. Plus, the highlights of my night – getting ID’d, THREE TIMES (YES!!)  and being told “great cheekbones”. All that contouring practice…. I got skillz. Makes me look super young. Clearly.

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When three become four..

It’s been four days since we had Baby George.
Labour was significantly longer with him than it was for Elizabeth and very different. Probably, dare I say it, a little easier. Not that the word ‘easy’ could ever apply to labour.
If I had to pick between the two, I would definitely choose George’s longer birth over Lizzie’s ridiculously short, shocking one.

Maybe it’s because I’ve done it once before, so I knew what to expect (although because I knew what to expect, I was pretty much dreading labour throughout the whole pregnancy this time). Maybe it’s because my midwives this time around were much better, or maybe, it’s because every birth is so different!

I must admit – I do always get a little touchy when people say to me things like “at least your labour with Lizzie was quick” and yes, I know I didn’t need to have an emergency c section, she wasn’t breach and I didn’t have a hemorrhage (or any of the other hundred things that could have gone wrong) but it was bloody horrific all the same and I was pretty much in shock the entire time.
Labour with George took five and a half hours, which, although still quick, doesn’t go anywhere near Lizzie’s 2 hour labour, and seemed to be a lot calmer.

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At 5.30AM I all of a sudden started to get some quite painful tightenings about 10 mins apart, so I phoned Marc at work (on the night shift, poor bugger) and whacked a pizza in the oven.
I’m not mental, cold pizza = perfect labour snack.
Quick phone call to the parents as well to make the hour and a half journey to be chief baby sitters.
By the time the pizza was done and Marc, taking the longest time ever, was home, the contractions were getting a lot closer and were increasing in intensity.
Thankfully, we’d finally sorted out the hospital bags two days prior (although I forgot to replenish with new snacks – I’d eaten all the ones Marc bought) so it was just a case of getting Lizzie up and heading on in.
With Lizzie, Marc was pretty calm before we left the house. This time he was running around like a headless chicken (he denies this) which actually made me laugh through a couple of contractions..so not a bad thing!
When we got there, quick check said I was 5 cm dilated, so in active labour.
Disappointing.
I was 5cm dilated three days before I even had Lizzie! If I’d thought labour was going to be longer this time, I’d have taken in some music or something. We were basically sat there in silence in the pool room till we whacked a bit of radio 2 on! I got Sara Bareilles – Brave stuck in my head and sang it through every contraction….surprisingly, this helped.
Fast forward a few hours and the pain started getting bad enough for me to want the gas and air, even though from past experience this made me feel horrendously sick. George is continuing to kick me through labour and actually seems to be causing some contractions himself. Thanks George. I’ll remind you of this when you’re older.
My midwives this time were fantastic and were telling me how to breathe and making me visualise things, which helped so much.
Finally the waters popped and then, BAM. Baby’s head was coming.
Apparently at this point, Marc thought I was going to break his arms as I was “bending them over the side of the pool”
He’s lucky he said nothing of his “pain” to me at the time.
Three bloody hard contractions later (whilst I can still feel him kicking and moving his head!) and he’s out. 10.54AM. Peeing all over me. What a way to greet the woman who’s carried you around for nine months!
He started crying straight away and after a bit of skin to skin and cord cutting, was taken to be wrapped up warm and passed to Marc.
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The whole process took a lot longer than we were expecting, but this was a relief! Contractions with George were a steady buildup to the worst ones right in the last 20 mins, making it far more manageable.
Contractions with Lizzie were the same from start to finish for the whole two hours. Excruciating.
I think the fact that I wasn’t screaming for “ALL THE DRUGS” this time pretty much proves it, quicker labours are not easier!

What I wasn’t expecting this time was the after labour pains. I mean…because labour isn’t painful enough?! Seriously body?

Apparently if you’ve had more than one child, after labour pains can be much worse. No kidding. I have been on a constant pain killer spree since he’s been out. For the first day I couldn’t even stand up straight. Oh and because I choose to breastfeed and do the body’s “natural thing” – this makes it worse and triggers more contractions. Yes. Contractions. They do not finish after you’ve had the baby! Why is nature so cruel? *sobs*
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We brought George home at around 5pm the same day, just in time to see Lizzie before bed. She was pretty confused but excited to give the baby a kiss. This excitement stopped at bed time. It turned into a screaming, kicking monster.
She’s had a few pretty mental tantrums the last few days, but I think she’s finally realised that “BABY JOOOOJ” is staying. She likes to give him a kiss and cuddle in the mornings so at least that’s progress! She freaks out every time he has his nappy changed though.
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Baby George – 9th February –  10:54AM  – 8lb 6oz

 

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So close!

The last two weeks. The home stretch. Obviously I’m being optimistic when I say 2 weeks, I’m aware that I’m quite likely to go over that, but for now, I’m hoping for two weeks. At most. Please.
Pregnancy is definitely the happiest reason to feel like utter crap.
I am exhausted, irritable, emotional, hungry, nauseated, walking like I’ve been kicked in the groin and so fat I can’t even sit down comfortably. Rolling over in bed is a 5 minute mission and my pregnancy jeans don’t even fit me anymore without causing more severe heartburn.
The glow? Screw you, ‘glow’. You’ve never even popped over for a brief visit!

One good thing that has come from being so close to due date is that we’ve finally sorted the bedrooms out.I’m a last minute kinda gal. The nursery is pretty bare, but we’re waiting to see if we have a pink or blue with the possibility of moving Lizzie to the very pink guest room / nursery if it’s a blue.
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Lizzie has been having this spate of three hour nap times. They have been amazing (I’ve been napping too), but I feel they have come to an end and it makes me want to cry. I am genuinely devastated. An hour is not enough nap time. At all.
Bless her though, she’s been very chirpy and becoming more affectionate every day. She even managed to say a strange toddler version of “love you” today. It sounded more like “loooloooo” but I know she meant to tell me she loved me (not grasping at straws at all).
My belly is getting lots of strokes and kisses. I really hope she knows what’s going on…I’d hate to see her do this to any non pregnant person’s belly!

Babies are so expensive!

We’ve been trying to get a newborn photographer. We had an amazing one for Lizzie in Yorkshire, but down here I can’t even find one remotely rivaling the price she charged. Unfortunately I can’t justify spending the amount of money being asked for down here, on a few photos. However amazing those photos may be. I don’t want this baby to have less than what Lizzie has, this child is equally special, it’s just proving difficult! I’m just really hoping I don’t have to take them myself – you’ve all seen those ‘expectation V reality’ pictures on Pinterest / Facebook / Google – that’s what it’ll be like! Then I definitely would feel sorry for this child!
We’ve contacted the cheapest photographer in the area, but to be honest, driving to Yorkshire is probably our cheapest option. (Yes we’re mental, but actually considering this!)

Thankfully, we’ve been quite spoilt and not had to buy the moses basket, stand, baby swing – everything that was too bulky and that I sold last time around – which has saved us a lot.

All I can say is, come on lottery win!!

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38 weeks.

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Naps and checkups.

I’ve always been one for a good nap. Before I had a child, they were an average of 40 mins. Now, a nap for me isn’t a good nap unless it’s at LEAST two hours. So really, not a nap. A mini sleep.
I am so happy that Little Squish’s average nap time is currently pushing 3 hours. I honestly don’t know how I’ll cope when nap times disappear.
No naps, a toddler and a newborn? Surely there are laws against this.

Went for my 36 week checkup today. The midwifes here have been pretty lax, I’ve hardly seen anyone! My last appointment was at 28 weeks. Had a different midwife again (I’ve not seen the same one more than once) but all went pretty well. It could have been pretty horrendous considering I had E with me and it was her nap time. She’s pretty moody when she’s tired. Takes after me, clearly.
Baby is 1/5 engaged, wouldn’t stay still at all – my belly literally looked like a plate of jelly- and has a strong heartbeat. Midwife is convinced of the gender based on this.
E started freaking out when my belly was being prodded and poked, even more so when the doppler came out. It was actually mega sweet. She started shouting “BABY!” and looked really worried. She was holding my hand but trying to push the midwife out of the way. As soon as I came off of the table, she lifted my top up and started stroking my belly.
I have no idea whether she actually understands what’s going on, but we have been talking to her about it every day. Maybe she’s just very protective of my belly. Who knows.

It’s sort of dawned on us recently how much baby stuff we sold after Lizzie grew out of it. We thought we were prepared and have been pretty much coasting along this pregnancy thinking we won’t have to spend much money, until.. Where’s the moses basket? We sold it. Where’s the baby swing? We sold it. Where’s the play mat? We sold it.
Crap.
Baby stuff costs much more than it really should. Seriously. Thank God we still have the pram! I think husband would have a heart attack if we had to buy a pram and whole new travel system too!

 

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Nocturnal baby.

There are a lot of things that wind me up when I’m near the end of a pregnancy.  Well,  actually,  they would wind me up even if I wasn’t pregnant,  I just have a much lower tolerance for idiocy and assholes at this stage.  A lot of things have wound me up in the last couple of days in fact.
However.
I have a new mattress topper.  It is amazing. It makes everything okay. Do you know what makes it even better? The new pillows that came free with it. They are so fluffy and soft. I feel like I’m sleeping on a cloud.
It’s hard to be angry when you’re sleeping on a cloud.

Bump is currently having a rave in my stomach,  giving me random spurts of heartburn. With Lizzie  I had to occasionally poke her to make her move. I needed to know I wasn’t just imagining I was pregnant and not just getting fat. This baby is having non stop party time and not letting me forget it’s there for one second.
This is good,  but a little inconvenient at 3am.

Elizabeth has started challenging us more and more recently and it is exhausting! Yes I know it’s great that she’s independent and has her own mind,  but sometimes,  I would like to be able to have more than an hour of calm,  behaved,  happy child time. Throwing things accross the room and or screaming at me because she has to have a nappy changed, isn’t greatly appreciated.

She’s started to play nicely with kids her own age now though which is a relief… She’s always been great with kids who are either obviously younger,  or a lot older.. But with anyone a similar age to her,  she seems to have tried to ignore them when they come up to her,  or gotten stroppy with them. Who can blame her? Id get stroppy too if people I didn’t know came up to me and either tried to hug me,  get in my face or take my toys.
We’ve still got a long way to go on the sharing front,  but she’s only a tiny tot,  she’ll get there.
Unfortunately she’s started blowing raspberries.  I say unfortunately because to anyone who doesnt know that this is what she’s trying to do, it would look like she is trying to spit on you. I feel that this could get us into trouble at some point. Best nip it in the bud.

I am freaking huge. Bump at 36weeks and 2 days.

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