Monday, January 30, 2012

Show Off Your Shot {7}

and then, she {snapped}

This week I got this photo of my two gorgeous boys together.  Ollie wearing his big brother tshirt and Nathaniel wearing his little brother onesie :)  These boys make my heart melt.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Life Is Good!

I am LOVING life as a family of 4!  We are all settling in well and getting used to things... 

Ollie is being an absolute star.  He has taken to Nate so much better than I thought he would, and there haven't been too many incidences of jealousy.  He seems to like him, asks if he is ok and occasionally comes over to give him kisses and stroke his hair unprompted.  We make a big effort to make him feel important!  I tell him how good a job he is doing at being a big brother and how Nate is so happy to have him.  Ollie and I are going on a date to the cinema, just the 2 of us on Wednesday night.  He is really excited and I'm looking forward to having some one on one time with him.

We tried breastfeeding but found that formula feeding was going to be a better option for us.  So far that's going great.  Nate is taking 120mls (4oz) every 3 hours or so.  He is struggling a little with what we think is colic, so I've to take him to the Dr. on Monday morning.  Night feeding is ok.... because we are formula feeding, James has been able to help and has been amazing doing the 2 feeds in the middle of the night while I do the last one at night and first when we all wake up.  James copes with tiredness a LOT better than I do!!

Nate seems to be a very content baby when he isn't windy from feeding.  He is still in that newborn, sleep all the time phase, but when he is awake he is very quiet and takes everything in.  I'm sure he already recognises my voice as there is a definite calm comes over him when I speak.  He has shown us a couple of those not quite real smiles.... kind of a sneak preview of what he will look like when he really does smile!  Adorable.  He is very very strong and has amazing head control for his age.  I love the little snuffly noises he makes while feeding.

I've been out and about a few times.  It feels different the second time around.  I think when I had Ollie I spent a fortnight in the house without going anywhere.  Second time around, I think you recover faster and get back to normal quicker, get up and about.  I've been on a lunchdate with hubby, a lunchdate with my mum and today we went for a walk just Nate and I.  It is strange pushing the pram around and peeking in at the baby I had inside my belly less than a fortnight ago!!

We have Nate's newborn hearing test on Thursday so we are going to get him registered on the same day.  I can't wait to make him official.

So all in all we are doing well!  Sleep deprived, but loved up and happy :)

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Project 365 Week 1

I've just started project 365!  A little different to most people..... who start it at the beginning of the year.  I start my project 365's on the day I give birth!  I did it for Ollie and am considering getting one of those huge collage posters made, to frame and put in his room.  If you want to see Ollie's 365 it can be found here.

{18th January}  Nathaniel was born at 10.05am... Ollie came to visit as soon as pre-school finished.

 {19th January}  My gorgeous baby decked out in his super cute onesie.

{20th January}  Nate had his very first bath.  He was not impressed!

{21st January}  Milk bubbles.

{22nd January}  Nate has his first trip in his swanky new pram.  Ollie pushed him for some of the way.

{23rd January}  My boys cutesy feet.

{24th January}  Just a few of our cards.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday {4}

❤ I'm loving that my baby boy arrived this day last week instead of keeping me waiting.

❤ I'm loving being a mummy of 2!

❤ I am loving my amazing hubby for helping out MASSIVELY with night feeds!

❤ I am loving NOT having a bump anymore!

❤ I am loving that my little family is perfect and complete!

❤ I'm loving having started Project 365 again :)

❤ I'm totally loving watching my eldest little one being a big brother.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Show Off Your Shot {6}

and then, she {snapped}

Nate caught out in the middle of a big yawn!!  I love this photo because you can see the fuzzy hair on his little face!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Birth Story!

Today I should be writing my 38 week pregnancy update and posting my 38 week bump picture.... but instead I'm recalling and writing down my (Nathaniel's) birth story!

I had a consultant checkup at the hospital on Monday 16th January where I was told I was 2cm dilated (although that can be normal for a second pregnancy) and I was given a membrane sweep.  James and I went for a lunch date to Nando's... I had the spiciest chicken, hoping to kick things off and I ached all day and night Monday, but all was quiet when I awoke Tuesday morning.

I woke Wednesday morning at 6.40am, after an AMAZING nights sleep.  I went for a wee and on walking back I felt some of my waters go.... though at that stage I wasn't entirely sure it was them!  I was sure I hadn't just wet myself though.... a few more steps.... a bigger gush and then it was fairly evident I was losing my waters.  My waters didn't break on their own when I had Ollie so it was all new to me!  I rang the hospital and they said to take my time but that I should come in to be examined.

Minutes after my waters broke, I started to have contractions that were 5 minutes apart and painful.  I rang my mum and asked her to come on over (40 minute drive away)....but a few contractions later and I really didn't want to wait for my mum to get there.  I rang my friend who lives right across the road and she came over so we could leave sooner.

On the way to the hospital it was obvious that things were happening fast as my contractions became 3 minutes apart.

We arrived at the day observation unit to be assessed and was found to be 4cm dilated!  By now my contractions were 2 minutes apart and really strong.  I started using gas and air.

They moved me up to the Home from Home department which is an area of the hospital run just by midwives, who encourage natural and relaxed labour.  Each room has it's own birth pool etc.

When I got to Home from Home the pains were coming so thick and fast and as much as I wanted to have  a natural labour, the pain was unimaginable and I asked for an epidural (I'd had an epidural with Ollie so had never felt this sort of pain before and I had no idea how long I would be in labour).

The midwife went to ring for the anaesthetist and came back with the news that it would be at least 40 minutes before they would be able to attend.  I really panicked thinking there was no way I could cope that long.  The midwife told me that she thought my labour was progressing at such an intense speed that she really didn't think I would need one.

Everything progressed so fast from then.  I remember walking around the room a little and feeling like my body was going to split open.  I told the midwife I thought I was dying.... and then I told her I really thought he was coming out.  The bath was run and I struggled into it.

The pool felt lovely and one of the midwives used the shower head on hot on my lower back... I leaned on the edge of the pool while my whole body was in the water and I made use of the gas and air.  James sat on the outside of the pool hanging on and facing me.

Apparently the anaesthetist came into my room at that point to let us know there was a space up in the labour ward for me but she was told I was too far gone now to be able to have an epidural!

The midwives used a mirror to be able to see how close I was to being able to push and I remember them saying they could see vernix.... I knew they meant they could see some of the head and my body then took over.  I became less scared and more motivated.... focused on James and I PUSHED.  I pushed with all my might and kept asking if it was nearly over!  All the while I was still using the gas and air.

I could literally feel him moving down my body and I felt myself tear though I wasn't sure where, and then his head was out.  Something came over me in that moment and I knew in less than a couple of minutes I would have my little boy in my arms.

TWO MORE PUSHES... and I scooped my little guy up onto my chest.

I turned around in the pool and made myself comfortable and we waited for the placenta to deliver.  James cut the cord himself and we just stared at little Nathaniel.

I couldn't believe I had done it myself.

My birth experience with Ollie was a lot more traumatic and scary... with intervention and forceps being used.  This time around I got the most positive birth experience that I could have imagined.

From the moment my waters broke until the moment he was delivered was just 3 hours and 25 minutes.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

He is here!

Nathaniel Henry Lee Hughes.
Born at 10.05am on 18.01.12 weighing 8lbs 8!

Monday, January 16, 2012

All Packed!

For the hospital!

I had a Consultant appointment at the hospital today because of my contractions episode on Friday night.  

After the examination and membrane sweep (SORE!) the Dr. told me I'm 2cm dilated!  This is such a relief.... it feels like the pains and contraction episodes I've been having recently have been doing something.  I'm already more dilated than I was when I got to hospital with Ollie.... I was in agony and only 1cm!!

Since coming home I've had some very very achy pains but not so much contractions I don't think.... tightenings but nothing regular.  Fingers crossed something kicks off soon!  It definitely feels as though it might. 

I'll keep bouncing on my birth ball!

If nothing happens before Friday, I have another sweep booked!  Hopefully it won't be long until I meet my baby boy!

Show Off Your Shot {5}

and then, she {snapped}

Ollie has a tendency to be quite boisterous around the dogs... and we have to constantly tell him to calm down!  It's a rare occasion where he will just sit with one of the dogs and STROKE them gently.  Normally he is running around and jumping and chasing them.  I found him stroking Lola so gently and she loved it!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Our Weekend Ramble

It has become a bit of a family tradition, on weekends, to go for a ramble (or as Ollie likes to call it, puddle hunting!).  The forest is right beside our house so we like to make use of it and the dogs run free and get rid of excess energy!!

Having had contractions this weekend, and a consultant appointment tomorrow afternoon in which they may do a membrane sweep, this may be our last ramble as a family of 3 (+2 dogs).... next time we go we may have a baby boy in a baby carrier!!  How exciting is that!?

Baked Banana Oatmeal

I recently saw a few baked oatmeal recipes pop up on Pinterest but before that I had never heard of it!  I searched through a few recipes and happened across one at Kath Eats Real Food and I followed it roughly... changed just a couple of things.

Day to day I don't normally eat breakfast.  I can't have milk so that rules out all cereals, and toast etc doesn't really do anything for me.  Baked oatmeal is my new found mega brekkie!!!  I made it with soya milk and didn't add any extra when it was ready.  For Ollie, I poured a splash of semi skimmed over the top and he loved it too.

Baked Banana Oatmeal
Serves 5!

3 bananas
2 cups of oats
1tsp of baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg, beaten
1 1/2 cups milk
1 tsp vanilla
2 tbsp sugar

1.  Preheat oven to 375C.  Line a casserole dish with baking paper so oatmeal comes out easier.

2.  Slice 2 bananas and layer some on the bottom of the dish.  Set the rest to the side.

3.  In a bowl combine all the dry ingredients.... in a seperate bowl combine all the wet ingredients and mash  the remaining banana.  Add this to the wet ingredients also.  Pur the wet ingredients into the dry.

4.  Pour into dish and top with remaining sliced banana.  Sprinkle a little sugar on top (to personal taste).

5.  Bake in the oven for 25 minutes.

6.  Serve and splash milk on top OR NOT! :)

Friday, January 13, 2012

Being a Mum!

Before I had Ollie, I don't think I knew how hard being a mum would be.  I didn't give thought to the sleepless nights, the tantrums, figuring out discipline etc.... but I also didn't give thought to how AMAZING it would be either.  I knew I would love being a mum.... but just how much, I had no idea.

To begin with, I didn't have much confidence and worried about everything I did, and was I doing it right.  I think I mentally beat myself up and constantly questioned whether I was being the best I could be for my little guy.  Over the last 3 1/2 years I have learned that as a mummy, I don't have to be perfect.  I don't think ANYONE can be a perfect mum.... we all have days where we question our parenting abilities and days where we think were frickin awesome!!!  

I feel it has really taken me to this point to bloom as a mum to Ollie.  Now that he is 3, I think I have got to grips with everything and feel confidence.  We have always had a lovely bond.  At times he drives me BONKERS but at other times (more so), my heart melts and my face aches from grinning.  His little face makes me SO happy.  I still to this day look at Ollie and can't believe I carried him around for 9 months and gave birth to him... and now have raised him for almost 4 years.  

Sometimes I wonder what James and I ever did with our evenings etc before we had Ollie (and this baby on the way)... We are rarely bored and I wonder how we ever filled our time!  We are most definitely kept on our toes.

I heart my family of 3 (and bump) and can't wait to heart my family of 4.

Is it easier the second time?  Knowing how things go and how to do everything you had to learn first time around?  I'm sure I'll be more relaxed in the early days than I was when I had Ollie.  I hope so anyway!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

What I'm Most Looking Forward To...

...About baby boy no. 2 being born!

I wrote a "What I'm Looking Forward To Most" list when I was expecting Ollie.  This time around, I'm looking forward to a few of the same things and some new things!

When I was expecting Ollie I wrote "I am really excited to actually give birth.  It's going to hurt a lot and everything but the pain is just a means to getting my baby at the end... and a baby at the end of the labour is totally worth it.  Also by giving birth I will have my own body back.  I have forgotten what it feels like to not be heavy and sore."

This time around, I am looking forward to hopefully having a better birth experience.  When I was pregnant with Ollie, I had no idea that his birth would go quite the way it did.  I am hopeful that this time around things will go more smoothly.  I want to enjoy it.

I couldn't WAIT for James to hold our Ollie for the first time... I wanted to see how they took to each other and to see the love between the two most important guys in my life.  This time.... as well as seeing James with our new baby.... I can't WAIT to see Ollie hold his baby brother for the first time.  I hope they are best buddies.

In my previous list I wrote about how excited I was to see how much alike Ollie would look like James.  James is so handsome and so I'm pleased as punch that Ollie looks like him.  This time around I'm looking forward to finding out if maybe this baby looks a little like me... maybe he will have dark hair!

Ollie started preschool in September, so for part of the day it will be just baby and I.  I'm excited to do the newborn thing again... go for walks, go to the library, chill out and snuggle together and then we go to pick Ollie up.  I imagine Ollie being really excited to see us at the school door and filling us in on his day.  I feel so lucky to be able to spend my days with my boys and be a SAHM... I couldn't imagine my life any other way.

I'm really looking forward to attending baby groups again.  I went when Ollie was little but obviously can't now that he is big and neither a baby or a toddler!  I want to make some new mummy friends as I really don't have many.

My mum always said that in having another baby, you aren't SHARING the love in your heart between both babies..... your heart grows and just has MORE love.  I can't wait to feel that.  I can't wait to feel a whole new explosion of love in my heart for my second little boy.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday {3}

❤ I'm loving having quality bonding time with Ollie before baby comes (he's off school with conjunctivitis).

❤ I'm loving Ollie's interaction with my bump.

❤ I am loving Lush Snow Fairy shower gel!!

❤ I am loving blogging more frequently!

❤ I am loving baking.  I can't get enough of it right now!

❤ I'm loving that there are only 9 days until my membrane sweep!! Come on out baby boy... we're ready for you!

❤ I'm totally loving my handsome and helpful hubby.  He works really hard and still comes home and helps me with chores.

❤ I'm loving that my pups are behaving themselves (most of the time)!

❤ I am totally loving that my house is clean and tidy and I'm keeping on top of it!!

❤ I am loving taking part in the January photo a day challenge!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Golden Syrup, Oatmeal and Raisin Muffins

The recipe for these fab muffins came from The English Kitchen but I adapted it a little.  Marie's recipe calls for golden syrup in the batter, stuffed inside and drizzled on top and I personally thought this would be a little too sweet so I left it at just in the batter.  I also included raisins in my recipe.  I love them.  Hubby and I have been devouring them heated and cut in half with a lump of melting butter on each half!

Golden Syrup Oatmeal Muffins
Makes 12

2 1/2 cups plain flour
3/4 cup of light brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup oatmeal
3/4 cup milk
2 large free range eggs
1/2 cup butter
3/8 cup of syrup
1 handful of raisins

To top:
Extra sprinkling of oats
Sprinkle of white sugar

1.  Preheat the oven to 200C (400F).

2.  Whisk together the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder and oats and raisins.  In a separate bowl melt the butter and stir the syrup into it.  Beat the eggs and milk together.

3.  Add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients and fold until combined.

4.  Fill your muffin liners and sprinkle oats and white sugar evenly on top... to your liking.

5.  Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Show Off Your Shot {4}

and then, she {snapped}

Ollie is off school with conjunctivitis so today we've been making the most of our time together before baby arrives :)  There aren't too many days left of just Ollie and I!  I am looking forward to there being 3 of us but for right now I'm trying to soak up every minute of it being just us 2!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

36 Weeks Pregnancy Update

Oh how the weeks are ticking by!!

I'm 36 weeks already.  2 weeks away from the stage that Ollie came at!  I can't believe how little time there is left now.

I had another consultant appointment on Tuesday where I got to see the baby on the scan again.  He now weighs just over 6lbs which is amazing, and he is head down though not engaged.  I asked my midwife yesterday whether not being engaged at this stage was something to worry about and she said no.  She said in the majority of second pregnancies once you engage you generally 'go'.... so it probably won't happen until last minute.

The consultant I saw on Tuesday was a lot nicer than the consultant I saw a couple of weeks ago.  She really talked to me about all my fears regarding the birth, my different options and we went over what I should be including in my birth plan.  I feel good about the birth.... bring it on I say!!

If nothing happens in the next couple of weeks, I am booked in for a membrane sweep at 38 weeks (less than 2 weeks away) so hopefully that will move things along.  This part of the pregnancy is certainly feeling longer than it did with Ollie... given that I've been on tenterhooks (and in pain) wondering if the baby was coming since 32 weeks!

A few days before Christmas we went to see our friends new baby and he was born weighing 7lbs 8oz and it was so surreal holding this tiny little baby above my bump.... there isn't that much of a difference between what my baby weighs now and the newborn I held.  It made it so much more real that in just a few weeks I will be holding my own.

I'm excited to meet my little boy!

How far along? 36 weeks!
Total weight gain/loss: + 12lbs.
Sleep: Sleeping really well unless Ollie comes in at 3am!
Food cravings: Sherbet, sour/ fizzy things, fruit juice, dinner (savoury meals).
Best moment this week: Getting on top of the housework.
Movement: CRAZY... he is going to rip out of my belly for sure!
Gender: BOY!
Stretchies: My whole belly has broken out in them now...
Belly Button in or out? Out.
What I miss: Iced coffee, brie, goats cheese.
What I am looking forward to: Possibly meeting baby in a couple of weeks!
Symptoms: Sore hips, sore back, tiredness, contractions, sore nipples!
Milestones: There is less than a month until my due date.
Emotions: Excited... but pretty hormonal at the same time!