Thursday, 30 August 2012

A Tuneful Journey ...

I cannot be the only expecting mother that pops her Blackberry on her tummy and watches the 'Bumpling' make it wiggle and jiggle to the rhythm of their dancing feet, can I? I don't believe I am. I believe it's a secret gift of lovely for all expecting mothers.
Knowing that my un-born piece of beautiful will enjoy music as much as their Mommy makes me smile from ear to ear.

Currently 'Bumpling' busts the most moves to the following tune:

I like the fact that they appear to be a bit of a Ben Howard fan. I have this rose tinted idea of being able to soothe them with his voice when they cry. Perhaps, that is highly rose tinted. Imagine, screaming child and me trying to press play on an ipod whilst changing a nappy, whilst trying to calm the child, WHILST pulling my hair out. Okay - Not pretty? But, worth the romantic thought I feel.

Note to Bumpling on the day of birth from me: "Hey. I just met you and this is crazy but here's Moms number. You'll need it one day ..."

Don't forget yesterday's competition folks - You could be in with a chance of winning a trememdous sock monkey RRP: £12.00 from 'Made With Love.' Go check it out.

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Made With Love ...

This blog post has been sponsored by 'Made With Love' and I am hosting a competition with a donated prize from this company at the end of this post.

It is always really lovely to hear success stories about the people you know and to hear that folks dreams are being pursued. I always get a belly full of fuzziness when I find out that friends and family are doing well and chasing something that they love best. So, it was exceptionally lovely to hear from an old friend of mine recently and it was even lovelier to hear that the company 'Made With Love' that she set up with her sister was now in full bloom.

'Made With Love' was founded by Claire Durnall and her sister Elizabeth Durnall on a crisp December day back in 2011 and officially set up in the new year of 2012. The company idea grew following a mixture of crazy suggestions from Claire, that apparently needed taming and the birth of Elizabeth's first child - Lola. Not to mention the fact that she has a Diploma in Costume Design and Construction and is pretty nifty on a sewing machine. So, she has basically tamed Claire's imagination and trained her up into a sewing goddess.  

Upon the birth of Lola, Elizabeth decided that she wanted a keep sake for her. Something memorable and with sentiment. She didn't like the idea of passing something onto her little one that would eventually get put in a box up the loft. So, after a few hours of research and hunting she stumbled across 'A Memory Bear'. This was the perfect gift for Lola but, unfortunately it came with not such a perfect price tag. However, it didn't take long for Elizabeth to realise that she was more than capable of giving the 'Memory Bear' a go herself. She collected a handful of Lola's baby grows and began to create. From there the creating just escalated and 'Made With Love' became busy making gifts and memory bears for pretty much everyone they knew.

The company now offer a large range of 'child tailored' gifts from Sock Monkey to Hand poured crayons, the list just goes on and on. Everything they create with their bare hands quite literally is made with love and you would be silly to not become infatuated with their design and gift ideas. They are even receiving orders from Mommy's and Daddy's all over the world. It would appear that these sisters really are "Doing it for themselves ... Yeah!"

Made With Loves very own hand poured crayons

Made With Love beaded bracelets, ideal for party bag or slumber parties

Made With Love personalised bunting
Made with Love sock puppets with a friend

If like me you have really took a shine to this ever-growing company or lovely, squishy goodies you can catch them at a few local events. Can you believe this? - They are even hosting their own craft fair on the 29th September at the Avon Business and Leisure Community Centre in Cannock - WS11 1LH. There will be an array of different craft companies showcasing there work there from Vintage crafts, wood work, knitting, jewellery, beauty products, makeovers, face painting, baby clothes and so much more. This is definitely not one to be missed. If you require any further information regarding this event, please do not hesitate to ask. I will see you there :-)

Competition time: 'Made With Love' have donated 'Moms The Word' with 1 beautiful sock monkey (Similar to the one below) to give away to a fellow reader/follower/subscriber. To be in with a chance of winning this wonderful cuddly toy please leave a comment on this post and I will be picking the winner on Monday 3rd September. Best of luck folks!

Please be aware that the sock monkey may not fit the exact bill of that above. The colour may vary depending on the sock.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

The Baby's Place...

I have been spending the last couple of weeks trying to make decisions on 'Bumpling's' special place. AKA - Their nursery. And, although my mind changes from one day to the next I am of a definite decision that I want 2 papier-mache animal heads in 'Bump's' room. However, my choice on animal is still un-decided. I'm toying with Giraffe, Moose, Stagg or Unicorn and open to suggestions, so please suggest away.

After traipsing round on the Internet for quite some time now I have become to realise that I am not the only Papier-mache head hunter out there. There are a few of us it would appear. However, I happen to be the only one that can't afford the swarve price stamp. They come at quite a hefty mark up, one that is a little out of my comfort zone. So, I am casting the £75 tag aside and going DIY.

If the dollar was no issue for me I would most certainly be purchasing the above off dwellstudio. Their range of Children's furniture and decor is unreal.

Back to DIY - I'm going to be making the two heads myself over the next few weeks and am very much looking forward to the challenge. I am hoping to document my animal heads for you, so that if you want to have a crack at it yourself then you sure can. Similar to the following blog post (only my animal choice is different):

Oh and my 'Magical' idea to add a touch of wonder to my the paper beasts is covering it in the Lewis Carroll's 'Alice In Wonderlands' story book paper. I may have to buy a few story books I fear as I could get this whole thing wrong - a number of times.

Friday, 24 August 2012

You're Having A Baby - L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N

4 Pregnancy tests later and the results held nothing more than the truth - 'I am a pregnant lady!' It had been confirmed. The biggest journey of my life was about to begin, pretty much from that moment.

The day that I had planned to have off from work to relax and enjoy my garden became the day of spreading our good cheer. Both Karl and I took our little 'Bumpling' from home to home, loved one to loved one and shared our Wonderful news. We made the decision to spread our cheer thinly though, keeping it to close relatives for now as we were both aware of the risks and complications that incur before the special 12 week mark.

That evening after a fairly intense day of kisses, hugs and tummy rubs I met up with my wonderful friend, Maria Kavalieros and attended a superb 'Noah and The Whale' gig in town. This concert marked a very special day in my life and is something that I will remember for a very long time. My best friend and I took 'Bumpling' to it's first ever gig when it was 4 weeks growing and that will live in my memory for forever and a day.

What a lovely way to remember the day I first ever connected with my son or daughter. The first day I knew something was growing deep down inside I shared with music that made me happy. Occasionally, I find myself playing 'Noah and The Whale' to the little bump in the hope that they too remember that special evening. Sometimes, I see them wriggling around and know they are bopping away to '5 Years Time' or so I like to think.

I'm currently on the hunt for a 'Noah and The Whale' baby grow that 'Bumpling' can wear as soon as they enter this world. But, I am having difficulty finding one. If any fellow bloggers or followers stumble across one of these (if they even exist) please do let me know. It would make me one happy Mommy. Come to think of it, if purchasing an already printed on baby grow is not possible, I'm happy to have it printed for me. I wonder if there is a printing company out there willing to do this?

Oh, and I will be purchasing this little garment for me to wear and keep as a treasure, when all the baby weight has disappeared that is and together 'Bumpling' and I will dance evenings away to the band they first knew and will hopefully grow to love.

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Camping when Pregnant ...

Last weekend we came up with the Genius idea, I say we, namely Karl. And I use the term genius lightly - To go camping. Now, both my husband and I are huge fans of camping. It is a type of holiday that holds many special memories for us. Plus, my Mother is a Guide leader so I would be an utter dissapointment if I ever exclamied those dreaded words "I hate camping!" According to Leffie (My mother) camping helps you grow into a well educated women but,she also believes carrying around spare elastic incase you get hit by a bus and your knickers go 'ping' - Makes you a better person.

The windy Welsh Coast

Knowing the weather was going to be shocking, Knowing the dogs were constantly going to be muddy, knowing that one of us may get an ear infection from all the wind and rain (luckily, that was Karl on the 2nd morning resulting in a trip to the local hospital) we still decided to go. If that's not the girl guide in me, I don't know what is.

It was not my first time camping in a downpour but it was my first time camping 6 months pregnant. After the experience, I now know that the following 5 things are essential to the 'Expecting Camping Mother'.

1) Duvets - Don't do sleeping bags girls. You feel like a worm in one at the best of times but feeling like a pregnant worm really is no fun. Not only do your feet become centrally heated pretty much everything else does to. Duvets allow you to poke your swollen pinky's out the bottom as they gasp for air and, Now I know you are in a tent but, it makes it somewhat more homely.

2) Chocolate - I find that this wonderful slab of brown stuff is an essential for any camping trip, Mother-to-be or not Mother-to-be. But, when a Mother-to-be it is far more important as a bowl of cereal just wont do. Your other half has annoyed you - Reach for the chocolate. The dogs have brought sand into the tent - Reach for the chocolate. The air bed has gone down whilst you sleep - Reach for the chocolate. It is that windy outside that a tent pole has snapped - Reach for the chocolate. Problem solved! You see ladies, essential and important.

3) Appropriate Footwear - Wellies. What a wonderful invention. A truley perfect invention infact. Especially for the girl who can longer touch her toes. Picture this - It's pouring with raindrops beyond your tent door and your 'Bumpling' is busy kicking the life out of your bladder. You need to pee, you must pee, let me pee. But, OH NO You've got to sit on the tent floor, get your knees up to your chest (the best you can) wriggle your heels into a hiking boot, tie your laces, scramble back up to your feet and hope that you haven't wet yourself upon exit. But, with welly boots - You need to pee, you must pee, let me pee. Welly boot on from a standing position and Go Go GO!

4) Teabags - A good cup of this nectar is problem solving at the best of times. But, when your hubby is sat opposite you with a glass of fine red wine and although you say "No, no I haven't missed alchol at all. Knowing that I'm not drinking is keeping this little 'bundle of joy' healthy is far more enjoyable" You know, that deep down inside you long for a sip of the good stuff. The only possible alternative is a nice cup of chaaaaa. I can't be the only one that recieves the same sort of high out of this little bag as I would at the bottom of a becks?

5) Loo roll - And, we come back to the You need to pee, you must be, let me pee topic here and let's face it who, when pregnant does not need to pee for the majority of the day? (I would like to meet you if you are the lucky individual who pees below average when pregnant and force feed you a gallon or two of water - Just so you know 'what it's like!) It's 2 O'clock in the morning, teaming down with more and more raindrops and the loo's are approximatley 1/2 a mile away. Are you going to walk all that way and risk setting the dogs off? No you are not. You are going to (in true girl guide fashion) quietly exit the tent (with your loo roll) and stoop behind the landrover. Don't forget the torch though. Oh, and this is the type of scene where your wellies will come in very handy.

 Can you see the Dolphin fin? They were beautiful

Dotty (to the right) with the beach all to herself

Can you spot Dotty?

Our lonesome tent

Blue Boy enjoying the sea

Together my husband and I survived and managed to keep 2pooches happy for a few days too. Together we made a few more camping memories and together we worked as a team to make the slighlty tricky operation of  'put up tent' a piece of cake. Together we understood that tent pegs would be a little difficult for me, walking both our pulling dogs probaby wasn't best for me, transferring dog crate from car to tent could do some damage to me (the list goes on) But, we worked through it and had a wonderful weekend. Roll on the day our little 'Bumpling' can join us on our camping adventures and let their inner Guide or Scout run free.

Karl and Dotty

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

A Hipster Mom ...

I turned 22 a fortnight ago (11th August) and knew exactly what I wanted. Not in a "I want these, get me these!" kind of way but in a "Just so you know I'd really like ..." kind of way. Unlucky for my husband, he happened to be the one lumbered with the task of satisfying my 'Kind of way.'

Now Karl (my husband) happens to be a slight wind-up-merchant and enjoys getting me all tangled in a giddy rage. So, as soon as I told him that it was a pair of 'Green Vintage Nike Blazers' that I wanted, the tormenting began. Can you believe the first thing that he said to me was - "Jessica, you can't have those now you're becoming a mom!" He found his comments regarding my desire for these moon boots hilarious. I, on the other hand found them highly irritating to the point that I began to ignore him when he exclaimed - "Jessica. Really you need to start wearing pleated skirts and V-neck jumpers now. Trainers like that aren't very Momzy." Momzy or not I want to be seen in them and I am happy to be seen pushing my little 'Bumpling' around in a pram whilst wearing my new birthday trainers.

Joking aside, I know Karl was only trying to get a reaction from me. A negative one at that and doesn't really think that his ridiculous statements hold any truth what so ever. But, I'm guessing there are people out there that would look upon my 'Mother feet' and frown and see nothing more than the shoes of a 'hoody' without really giving my ability to be a mother a thought. I often wander around town on my lunch-break with my semi-shaved head and thick rimmed glasses clocking peoples stares. People do judge you on your ability to be a good parent on the way you look. Granted, not everyone and I hold alot of respect for those that reserve judgement. But, there are those that look and presume it was all an 'accident' - You can just tell by their faces.

To those of you that find yourself doing the above when you see me in my trainers may I just remind you that I am a very happily married, working 9 till 5 5 days a week lady, doing a good job of caring for two large dogs and 4 chickens that need feeding, walking, loving, cleaning etc everyday whilst living and cleaning in my own house with the man I love, managing to tend to a garden and know the names of all the flowers I have planted in my borders and enjoying the journey of pregnancy along the way, longing to meet the little one and be the best 'Mom' any child can wish for.

Still frown upon me in my 'Hip' trainers? Well, I think I ought to warn you - I'm not sure this 'Mummy blog' is for you!

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

20 Wonderful Things About Being 26 weeks Pregnant ...

1) Watching your Bump move for the first time.
2) Knowing that you're well over halfway now.
3) Popping a little music on for the Bumpling to have a litle dance to.
4) Understanding that it's okay to pile on the pounds - "You're pregnant!"
5) Learning to enjoy your excercise ball ... and, how not to fall off it.
6) Watching your husband put his ear to your stomach in the hope that the he may hear the words 'Alrite Dad! How you doing?"
7) Letting your dogs rest their heads on your stomach and watching them recieve a small kick in the face.
8) Knowing that in roughly 14 weeks time you will have your son or daughter in your arms.
9) Eating for two (But, remember - You don't have too!)
10) Resting your hot cup of tea mug on your bump - It always gets Bumpling excited.
11) Beginning to plan the contents of your holiday bag.
12) Claming as many 'baby' freebies as you can.
13) Entering as many 'baby' competitions as you can.
14) Putting little outfits together.
15) Imagining how your baby will respond to the pooches.
16) Imagining how the pooches will respond to the baby.
17) Finalising their name ... and then changing your mind ... Again.
18) Whispering in your husbands ear "Do you think they are sleeping?" at silly-O'clock in the morning because you just can't srop off.
19) Loving this little thing as much as you do without even meeting them.
20) Feeling like you already know your baby and looking forward to getting to know them.