Monthly Archives

February 2017

BABE, EAT, MAMA

TIPS FOR YUMMY LUNCH BOXES

28th February 2017
1486674569766

{source}

Honor started grade 1 this year and for the first time I need to pack lunch for her to take to school. The playschool and nursery school she attended both provided snacks, which was really convenient although meant I relied on their interpretation of  healthy choices. Here are my tips for healthy, easy and well-received lunch boxes!

  • Buy a great quality box that is easy for little hands to open and that has a few compartments. We love this one: 3 compartments, easy to open and it fits in the little school cooler bag.
  • Pack a variety of foods that will keep your child’s energy up for the day.
  • Make it easy for yourself! I have a big Tupperware filled with healthy snack foods that I add in to the lunch box. I keep these for school lunches and not for snacks at home so that the novelty value remains. When I’m packing I can grab it and pick and choose, plus I can easily see when I am running low. I also shop for sandwich components and fruit on Monday to ensure I have all the necessities.
  • Send some love. The lunch box itself is an expression of love for our kids and I love that it also gives me the chance to communicate with Honor during her day. I decorate her wrapped sandwich with some cute stickers (kept in above-mentioned Tupperware) and I tape a little note to the lid and sometimes cut her sandwiches into shapes using cookie cutters. These extra touches take less than 2 minutes but I know she loves them.
  • Pack the lunch when you have time. The whole process only takes me about 10 minutes. I pack it the night before usually while I’m getting our dinner ready and the kids are in bed. It’s a hassle-free 10 minutes, which wouldn’t be the case in the morning before school!

So what’s in a typical lunch box?

  • A sandwich: I use a good wholewheat or low GI bread and a topping I know she’ll enjoy. At the moment those toppings include cheese and ham, cheese and marmite, peanut butter, and a berry fruit preserve on
    Fridays.
  • Fruit: I fill one of the little compartments with cut up fruit that’s easy to eat, such as nectarine, figs or strawberries, or some mixed berries or grapes.
  • Biltong: I add some soft biltong in the sandwich compartment.
  • Snack: In the other small compartment I mix it up with a snack such as nuts and raisins, a raw bar cut up into pieces, dried fruit roll, small rice cakes, trail mix or savory crackers.
  • Treat: Fridays are for treats! So I pack in a tiny chocolate or another small surprise.

I have found that I love packing the lunchbox and it usually comes back nearly finished, which I take as a big sign of approval!

BABE, BUMP, MAMA

MEET THE BUMP: BAILEY SCHNEIDER

27th February 2017
Bailey Schneider 16 Weeks Pregnant Maternity Shoot 11

We all know radio and TV personality Bailey Schneider so we were super excited to hear that she is a fan of Kimmy & Bear and even more excited to share her meet the bump story with you – we can tell her little boy is surrounded by so much love and family.

Bailey lives with her husband, Socrates Georgiades (Sox) in Cape Town, she is 22 weeks pregnant.

Is this your first pregnancy?

It is! I’ve been keeping a Pregnancy Journal with my whole experience, the funny things that have happened, the milestones and so on, so that I can give it to Baby G one day.

Are you finding out the gender of your baby?

We couldn’t wait to find out the gender and at our 12 week scan on 22 December, Baby G didn’t want to show us. Kept crossing legs or turning away. On 6 Jan, I was in hospital for a night for severe dehydration from vomiting from a migraine and when we had a scan to check that baby was OK, we were able to find out that Baby G is a little boy! So exciting!

Tell us one thing you can’t live without while pregnant and why not?

I cannot live without my Granny Goose Cuddle-up Pregnancy Pillow and visits to my Chiropractor. I have a bad back ordinarily, but with the pregnancy, I’ve been feeling the aches and pains even more.

What is your favourite beauty product while pregnant and why do you love it so much?

The full Mama Mio range, like the Tummy Rub Oil, the Boob Tube and so on. There are certain oils/creams/products you cannot use when you’re pregnant and that’s why I love this range, because it’s especially made for pregnancy, so you know you’re safe. It’s also so luxurious and a chance for me to pamper myself at home.

What is your favorite food or are you having any cravings while pregnant?

In the beginning, I couldn’t get enough fish and olives. The minute I started taking Omega vitamins, the fish craving subsided, although every now and then I feel like it. I’ve had cravings for fresh oranges, glasses of milk, the cliched pickles, popcorn, carbs and sweet things- which has been hard for me since I follow a LCHF lifestyle. However, I haven’t not had – I’ve just tried to be control of the portions. I’ve also had a weird craving for McDonalds McChicken – something I haven’t had in 4 years. I find the cravings come and go.

What preggy books or apps are you using?

I am loving the What to Expect When You’re Expecting (WTEWYE) Book (latest edition) and Baby Sense/Pregnancy Sense. I’ve also got the apps: Pregnancy+ and the WTEWYE app. I’ve downloaded Baby Centre and The Bump apps too, but I go to the other 2 first for weekly updates on Baby G’s growth.

How would you describe your pregnancy style and where do you shop for preggy clothes?

I am loving the pregnancy experience because I don’t have to hold in my tummy anymore. haha! I’m finding I’m wearing tighter dresses, which I wouldn’t have worn ordinarily, but now I am proud to show off my bump. My husband actually spoiled me with a whole bunch of Maternity clothing from MeaMama – I was so impressed with his style and choice! I have also been wearing maxi dresses that are a size bigger from Poetry, Freddy Jeans have incredible maternity jeans, Cherry Melon has lovely leggings, LABEL Collection has a beautiful Maternity section, as does  Mama Meah. Cotton On has comfortable workout maternity wear. I sound like I’ve bought a lot of maternity wear, but I’ve bought a few staples and I’m mixing and matching with my ordinary clothes (well, the ones that still fit.)

Bailey Schneider Emoji Dress and Adidas Sneakers Maternity shoot 8

What’s your exercise regime at the moment? And how has it changed with your pregnancy?

I have always done Pilates at BUC Fitness , so I’ve continued with that and my instructor, Jess, has adapted the class to a Pregnancy Pilates class. I do Preggy Pilates twice a week and on the other days I try to get in a Promenade walk of 4-5kms. I’m grateful that I have been give the all clear to exercise, and while I’m definitely not overdoing it, I always feel so much better once I have exercised.

Have you decided on a birth plan, are you going natural or having a caesar?

I have had a complication with my pregnancy. I was actually meant to go for an operation to remove a rather large Fibroid, however, I found out I was pregnant just before the operation, so we cancelled it. As a result, the Fibroid has grown thanks to the hormones, it’s caused me quite a bit of pain and I’ve been advised that if I attempt Natural Birth, I may rupture my Uterus. The safest option for me is a C-section and being safe and keeping both of us healthy is the best birthing plan for me.

In preparation for your baby what are your most over whelming thoughts/ worries/concerns?

Gosh, I’m going to be 100% honest and vulnerable here. I never realized I liked to control things so much. I have definitely learned that pregnancy and motherhood is out of your control and I’ve had to let go of certain plans or ideas. I’m still learning to surrender, to be honest. I also had a laugh with my husband the other day. We are fully aware (and also not even close to truly knowing) how life as we know it is going to change. I’ve had feelings of being beyond excited to meet our little guy – especially because we have hoped, wished and prayed for a healthy baby, to little fears of: “There’s no turning back. I’m not ready!” Another thing that I’ve worried about, and I hope it’s normal, is trying to figure out how to be a Mom and continue with my career. For 16 years I’ve been the brand “Bailey Schneider” on Radio and TV and my career has been my baby. I am an all-or-nothing type of person, so I’ve been worried about juggling both. How can I be an “All” Mom and give “all” to my career too? Again, it’s about surrendering and knowing that everything is as it should be. My husband is always my voice of reason and the reality is, we won’t know anything until our little boy is here. One day at a time. I really hope it is a normal feeling, because I’ve felt guilty for even feeling this way.

How did you tell your husband you were pregnant? And when did you break the news to friends and family?

We had been trying for a baby, from the day we got married – we had also said we would try for a year, without pressure. I’m so grateful that it only took us 7 months. The operation to remove that Fibroid was coming up and it was the one month, I wasn’t expecting to become pregnant (see what happens when I surrendered – I’m learning.) I was 4 days late, which annoyed me because I didn’t want to be on my period, whilst in hospital. I had said to my husband that if, by the end of my radio show the following day I still hadn’t got my period, I’d buy a digital pregnancy test. That evening, we had dinner and I took the test, not really expecting a positive, because I knew I had the operation the following week. Well, it was a complete surprise (the irony – from all the previous months of hope and expectation) when the test showed: Pregnant 2-3, meaning I was 4 weeks pregnant. We both burst into happy tears, we kept hugging each other, then we sort of laughed hysterically at each other like mad people. It was such an amazing moment. I had blood tests the following morning, which confirmed that I was indeed pregnant. We cancelled the operation. It was serendipity too. My Mom and Dad live in Johannesburg and my sister and BIL live in London. I always imagined that I’d have to tell them via Skype. However, that Friday, I was scheduled to fly up to Johannesburg for a friends wedding that weekend. My sister and BIL happened to also be flying in from London for a visit, so I was actually able to tell them all in person. It was incredibly special and there was loads of excitement as it’s the first baby in our immediate family.

I told my best friend Karolina the next day when we met for coffee (erm, decaf) in JHB and a few others. BUT, because I had a few scares in the first trimester and the Fibroid caused me a lot of pain, we decided to wait for the full 12 weeks and assessment. The scan was on the 22 December, and once we were given the all clear, we made a Christmas Day announcement publicly! It was incredibly special.

Bailey Schneider 16 Weeks Pregnant Maternity Shoot 9

Dream babymoon destination?

Mauritius or somewhere local, like, the sleepy fishing town Paternoster.

What is the best pregnancy advice you have received?

Everyone keeps scaring us by telling us to sleep and enjoy watching series and movies now because you won’t be doing that for a very long time. I’ve been resting as much as possible and not feeling guilty when I have a day on the couch, even when the weather is beautiful outside. The other best advice I’ve received is to get off Google (scary place) and to choose a few close mom friends I trust and chat to them for advice. Everyone has their own opinions and ideas and it’s not that it isn’t right, it just might not be right for you. It can be very overwhelming and with the amount of knowledge available today, people tend to lean on that, instead of trusting our own maternal instincts.

IMG_7476

Follow Bailey on Instagram and make sure you have a look at her blog, Vanilla Blonde too.


				
								
	
BABE, BUMP, MAMA, READ

FAMILY ALBUM & THIS WEEK’S READING LIST

24th February 2017
Beyonce

Happy weekend. Here is Joburg we are in for more rain – we’ve had cold rainy weather this whole week so we’ve been doing some serious crafts, painting, house making and even shows… rainy days are long when you are a mum. Wishing you all a wonderful weekend!

Here are some links that caught our eye this week: 

Natalie Portman Channels Demi Moore in 2017 Hollywood Issue Portfolio.

Japanese women looking to speed up the “mommy track.”

Beyonce: the Rock a Baby album!

First-born children have better thinking skills

Why skin-on-skin is so powerful.

How to raise financially savvy children.

This song was scientifically designed to make babies happy

When does a child need a sick day?

What the Obamas gifted celebrity babies from the White House.

Why young girls don’t think they are smart enough.

BABE, NEST, PLAY

GUEST POST: HOW TO ORGANISE TOYS

22nd February 2017
RobynDaviePhoto-KB-Interiors-64-1024x684

We pride ourselves in organisation but Carla, from Pretty Organised, takes things to a whole new level. Over the next few weeks Carla will be sharing her top tips for how us mamas can get seriously organised.

Carla is also mama of 2 year old Nikolaas, so naturally the first place for any mama to start organising is toys!

Setup a play area in your home

I found that having a designated area for toys helps to keep things organised. You can use a wooden box,  a plastic container, a basket, a toy chest, or a bookshelf with several bins to  organise toys. Decide what goes where and let this be a measure of whether you are accumulating too many toys. I have a large toy basket that holds the majority of Nikolaas’ toys (which doesn’t include stuffed animals and books)

Keep it simple

When organising your child’s toys, keep it simple and decluttered. Go through the toy room every change of season to get rid of old, broken items that children no longer play with. Getting into the habit of regularly decluttering will save you time and space in the long run.

Pack away

When Nikolaas and I did Kindermusik  the teacher ,Tracey, taught us a sweet song, “Toys away”, which gently taught children about packing toys back where they belong after playing with them.  It has stuck with us and we still sing it whenever we are packing toys away. I think it is important to have little ones help cleaning up. This way they notice all the different toys they have to play with. It also teaches them to take responsibility for their belongings.

Take stock and donate toys

Once every few months it is a good idea to take stock of all your child’s toys to determine which toys are being used the most and which ones are no longer played with. This is especially important in the early stages of your child’s life and will help determine which toys are age appropriate. In South Africa there are so many orphanages and thus a great need for toys to be donated, so get into the habit of making a donation from your stock when necessary. Once your child is old enough, involve him in choosing toys to donate and explain how happy any unused toys will make another child.

Rotate toys

Create a cycle of toys so that kids don’t get bored. Store some books and toys away and then, in a few weeks or months, rotate the ones from storage. To help you remember to rotate, make a note on your calendar.

Receiving toys as gifts

When it comes to birthdays, let your family know that you are trying to manage the number of toys that your child receives. I try to have a chat with my family before Christmas or Nikolaas’ birthday. We discuss options for gifts and if there is something specific we would like to get him. This year we decided to buy him a wooden kitchen. It helped so much that the family contributed, because we could get him a good quality gift that would outlast other toys. Asking for books is always a great option if it is difficult to chat to your family or if they live far away.There are so many wonderful children’s books and they seem to be far more manageable than toys.

Storing toys

I find it helps to categorize and store  toys by type (cars, dolls, puzzles, etc.)  I do like the idea of a toy box which is filled with a bit of everything, a toy box is especially nice when friends visit and you want to set up a play area. This will give children more options when they decide what to play with. 

Toy shelves

Shelves help children see what toys they have. When storage boxes are used, try labelling them with large words or pictures to help children identify their contents or use clear plastic containers. Place frequently used toys on low shelves, to make it easier for children to reach.

BABE, MAMA

MEET THE MAMA: JEN FROM BLUSH PAPER COMPANY

21st February 2017
16665533_1320889581301845_3352556740566566097_o

Jen is one half of the super team behind Blush Paper Company, she is also super mama to two year old twins Harper and Cara.  

How has your style changed since becoming a mom?

I’ve simplified my style drastically! My go to in the morning is ; jeans, a t shirt and my trusty superegas  – I love a good shoe! Ive recently embarked of a more simplified, functional, quality driven wardrobe. Less is most definitely more in my mind and that way i can focus on other things.  

539F5CE7-783C-446D-939E-16DF95A982B8

Best gift you have received for your girls?

Their wooden push cart with blocks which they play with all the time. They especially love to push their beloved Bunny & Hippo around in it all day long along with a few other treats they pick up along the way. It has been a saving grace in our family and watching their little faces chasing each other up and down is too adorable for words.

Favourite book to read to your girls?

They have a library of books but one that stands out is this book that was actually my younger brothers when he was a toddler called the Oxford Childrens Picture Dictionary. And its so great ,each picture is different and you can basically make the story up as you go along but they’ve got to guess what each object/ colour/ activity is happening in the picture. Its so colourful and vibrant  – my girls love paging through and showing me what they can see.  

Where is your favourite place to go hang with your children? 

This would have to be Nanna and Papa’s garden. They love it here and know it so so well. They even have their regular hiding places and go to spots and of course where the cookie jar is kept!

ED10CDF1-7E24-439B-8558-D9D020475C2C

Favourite meal to give your girls?

The girls love a Spaghetti Bolognese and I have a small heart attack when I see the state of the kitchen post meal time. But as long as they eating its all part of the process.

What is the biggest surprise to you about having twins?

How much joy they bring to my life every single day. Not a day goes by that i don’t feel truly blessed and fulfilled. Watching these two girls grow up with such strong district personalities along side each other has been such a wonderful experience.  

16665632_1320888574635279_3057880897821803449_o

What do you love most about your husband being a dad?

Seeing my girls faces light up when they see their daddy in the morning when they wake up or when he plays with them in the evening and they both collapse in a fit of laughter. He truly is one the best dads in the world. They are pretty darn lucky …. as am I.

16700623_1320889077968562_3184213917692932120_o

You have a successful business. Any advice on balancing motherhood and work?

Well we have just started so its early days yet but thank you. Im truly grateful for all that we have achieved thus far. I would say my biggest advice would be when you are a working mama balance is key. The question of whether one can have it all is so personal to that specific individual. in my mind each day comes with its own challenges and you have to remain focused on what you want to do but also realistic that the important stuff like family will have to come first no matter what. Its a balancing act for sure each and every single day.  

What one thing do you want to teach your children?

To be kind to all human beings no matter their race, class or beliefs. We are all equal and deserve the same respect. Life is a gift and we should cherish it no matter what.

Best piece of advice you could give moms of twins.

Surround yourself with a good support system. Don’t be afraid to ask for help even when you think you can manage a task alone. And most importantly give yourself some me time and have that glass of champaign even if its a Tuesday evening. You deserve it girl friend!

Images by Campbell Photography.

BABE, DIARY

FRANCIE SUGAR (YEAR 2) – 52 PORTARITS ROUND UP – JANUARY

20th February 2017
IMG_7291

Week 40: We spent the last week of our holiday on the Natal Coast with the Stark family… we rented a beautiful house over looking the ocean, with a pool and a lawn. You decided that the beach was even less appealing than the week before so we stayed clear of the sand and the ocean. We spent the good weather days swimming in the pool and making endless cups of tea with your toy set. You built Duplo and coloured in. It’s a change to be the only child – for both you and me. In the mornings we quietly snuck out to make everyone breakfast. When you (and I) went down for a nap the rest of the family was waking up. On the cooler days we visited the croc farm – you loved seeing the flamingos and the bunnies. And one day we visited the UShaka Aquarium – you loved the push car that we rented for you, you found the fish fascinating and the penguins tolerable but you hated the life-size men dressed up as animals. I don’t blame you. Your Afrikaans vocab increased, you insisted on drinking water through a straw and from the moment you woke until bedtime again you didn’t wear clothes. The most I could get you to wear was a tracksuit top but certainly no nappies. In front of our house ran a working train track with  a train going past every few hours. Most people would complain about this but you were thrilled – you would jump up each time we heard the train coming and we would run with you to catch a glimpse!

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Week 41: Back home and you are thrilled to be back in your space and surrounded by your cousins. You are back to owning our home and demand to carry no less than 5 bags around all the time. It was evident how much you missed your cousins while we were away as seeing them you threw your arms around each one with excitement. We are back into a rhythm of being at home, visiting the nursery and the horses, going back to our playdates and spending lazy summer afternoons with the twins.

IMG_3856

Week 42: Your sentences get longer everyday and I feel  I am constantly followed by a shadow that narrates my every move. To confirm what you want you put a decisive “ya” at the end of your sentence for example “come mama, ya!” or “read mama, ya!” you have also learnt to say thank you/dankie for everything which comes out as a mix equaling “dank you” in the sweetest soft voice.

To start the year off we got you a little table and 4 chairs which has been an absolute hit. I thought you would spend your time sitting at the table colouring which you do when your cousins visit but you prefer to line the chairs up as your bus. It is fascinating to watch as you make sure that the chairs are perfectly in a row, not a millimeter out. You then gather your bags and put them either “under my seat” or “in the boot” and collect us each a ticket. You, your mama and your papa have spent many hours sitting in your bus. Of course binkie joins us as does your doll’s pram and doll.

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Week 43: Time goes so quickly once you are a mother – I know I have told you this a million times but it constantly confronts me. As I watch you grow and explore I am endlessly amazed. Your little voice is so sweet and you concentrate so hard getting your words out. Your favourite food is chocolate ice cream (thanks to your cousins) and eggs and sausages. You love your doll, playing peek-a-boo behind the curtain in your room and your Playtown book is your best. You love having milkies when you wake up from your nap and then listening to Peter Rabbit. In the car your favourite song to sing is “our time” from Kindermusik. You want to take your ballet dress and a pair of Honor’s old slipslops everywhere!

Jack Jack comes to our house every Wednesday to play and you love showing him around, you try to take his hand but he does not always oblige. Of course I do also hear “no jack jack” often when he reaches for your things. I know the two of you will grow up bring such great friends.

IMG_0275

Week 44: We’ve had the toughest week since you came into our lives. You got terribly sick which resulted in you being admitted to hospital for four days. I never considered my baby going to hospital and then suddenly there I was packing our bags for Parklane. You were your usual trooper self, being so brave and patient and trying so hard to still laugh and giggle. People think that it is hard for the mama because of no sleep or a change in scenery but that isn’t what made it hard. I found it so hard- hard to know what to do, hard to comprehend  that I was supposedly doing the right thing. Hard to fight my mama instincts as I held you down for blood tests and all sorts of things… much of the time I wanted to rip the drip off and carry you home, but of course I didn’t do that. Instead you and I hung out together _ I read your favourite stories (Cave Baby, Angelina Ballerina, Peter Rabbit and Squash and a Squeeze) over and over and I undressed and redressed your doll countless times. We cuddled in the big chair and I breastfed you like a newborn. We had long midday naps together, when I would shut the door and pray no one would wake us. We stared at and chatted about the alphabet curtains and I explained the drip to you over and over – you soon got used to it, navigating your movements around the cord and even saying “beep beep” every now and then. We got into a routine of it all, your papa arriving early with breakfast and Bailey and Wiggy visiting later. Kimmy and Bear were stuck in France which broke my heart but I know it was worse for them 

BABE, DIARY, MAMA

FOUR TIPS FOR STARTING SCHOOL

16th February 2017
Processed with VSCO with a5 preset

My little ones starting school was such a big milestone, and a big change for them after being by my side for three and a half years. Speaking to my mom friends whose babes also started school this year, and even to moms whose babes have been at school for a while but were now going back after a long holiday, I know I’m not alone in thinking and feeling the weight of the occasion.

I received some wonderful tips from moms I know about making the transition as easy, and as gentle as possible for the child. Because easy for your babe means easy for mom.

My sister, Alex, mother of 6 year old Honor and 1 year old Jack, recommended the magic bracelet. This idea comes from “The No-Cry Separation Anxiety Solution” by Elizabeth Pantley, and she used it when her daughter started school at 3 years old. She made a beaded bracelet with her daughter before school began. Once they had made the bracelet she filled it with her love, demonstrating this through rubbing the beads. The bracelet was only to be worn at nursery school and any time she felt unsure she could rub or squeeze the beads and get some love from her mom.

My friend Dominique, mother of two and a half year old Griffin who started school this year. When her son is unsure about going to school in the morning, Dominique says, “Do you remember how the story goes….” and he immediately says, “Ooh tell me the story.” She then talks him through a story of the entire process of going to school, from driving and seeing how many busses they can spot, to parking and saying hello to the dogs that bark next door, all the way through the to giving him a big hug goodbye, and on until story time when she picks him up. Griffin loves the story and finds comfort in the monotony of it.

My friend Rose, mother to 1 year old Sophie and 2 year old Isabella, who started school this year. The line that Isabella responds to the best is “you’re going to play with all your friends, mummy has to do mummy stuff (e.g., work/shopping) and then I’ll be back for you just after story time (the last activity).” Apparently using “leave” and “go” imprint in a negative way on the child, and they prefer a logical explanation and format.

My tip is taking your child to the school they are going to be going to before they start there. I took my girls to the little school they are attending in the mornings before school actually started a few days a week towards the end of last year. They got to know a few of the teachers and the space became familiar to them. That way, when they started school this year, they were not seeing the place for the first time.
I would love to hear your tips and what you have done to help your babe to transition smoothly into school.
BABE, MAMA, NEST

YOUR TODDLER ADMITTED TO HOSPITAL? HERE IS HOW TO MAKE IT EASIER

9th February 2017
Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Francie and I recently spent 4 days in hospital – she is fine now, but at the time it was pretty scary. Admitting my toddler into hospital  had never crossed my mind and the most serious thing I had ever had to do with a hospital was have my wisdom teeth out. Francie wasn’t even born in a hospital!

Of course it is hard because it is scary and worrying, but other things make it hard too. The unexpected things: fighting your mama instincts when your baby is continually poked and prodded while screaming for you save her – this is so emotionally draining. The claustrophobia of staying in one room for such a long time – you are in a hospital bubble, the light is strange and the temperature is controlled, everything is clean, you eat on the go or in weird positions with a baby in one arm. After a day or so I was pretty claustrophobic but because of the drip we couldn’t leave the room. On that note – the  drip!! – it confines your poor babe to a very small area – a cot and a chair which means very long days. And finally the break in everyone’s routine, the continual waking up for checks and temperatures etc. It ain’t easy.

I constantly thought of those mamas, babes and families who spend long stretches in hospitals and paed wards with little progress.Illnesses that wear one down in their longevity and those mamas who spend weeks and months by their babe’s sides as they are helplessly fighting a long term disease – I always thought they were amazing but I now know that they are the real life super heroes.

If you find yourself headed to hospital with your babe/toddler or child, here are a few things I suggest packing – some of them I thought of and others I called my sisters or husband for in panic!

  • All your babes favourite comforters – Francie’s cot had all her friends in it and it really helped settle her in when we arrived, she seemed to understand that that is where we were sleeping because all her home cot contents where there.
  • Blankets – for you and your babe! Hospitals get cold. And nights in the chair holding your babe can get pretty chilly without a throw. Plus later on, once the drip was removed I used this blanket as a throw on the floor for some playtime.
  • A teaspoon. Yes I know, strange. But I promise you when you need a teaspoon in hospital you will not be able to find one! The food for babes is delivered with a knife and fork so having a teaspoon would have been really useful.
  • You cannot have too many story books – I know Francie’s five favourites off by heart now and actually dreamt of Cave Baby the other night.
  • Surprise toys that are wrapped up! And extra wipes for “cleaning” everything.
  • A doll. I found a great little doll at Pick ‘n Pay and I took this along with us. It not only provided many hours of entertainment but was also great for role play – Francie quickly became scared of the nurses and doctors so everything that they needed to do to Francie they did on the doll first and it really helped her understand what was going to happen.
  • . I have always been anti doctors kits as toys.  I sort of feel medical things are not toys and playing giving injections is not ideal and shouldn’t be looked at for entertainment and fun. BUT I wish I had bought her a little medical kit to play with at the hospital, perhaps it would have helped her to have similar instruments as the doctors.
  • Not full baby grows as pyjamas. It is much easier to have a long sleeve baby grow with no legs and tracksuit pants and socks – yes is it more of a mission but it is much more practical. The baby’s pulse is measured on their toe so at night you can sneak off the sock without underdressing your babe each time and therefore keep her sleeping. The same goes for the examinations etc. Separates are the way to go!
  • Things to make drinking water the most fun thing ever! Take fun straws and interesting new bottles. We were told to get her to drink, drink, drink. Once my sister had dropped off some fun straws it was such a novelty to down loads of water.

And in case you know a mama and babe heading to hospital or you hear that they are there, they will probably say they don’t need anything – but they do! So drop off a little toy or a favourite book. It will help that mama so much. You don’t even have to buy it, you could wrap up a few of your kids’ books from home with a note “We thought you would like to borrow these” trust me, it will help!

 

BABE, BUMP, MAMA

MEET THE BUMP: CARA RHODES

8th February 2017
Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

We are so excited to feature this beautiful mama to be. Cara is 29 weeks pregnant with her first babe and lives in London with her husband, who happened to be our cousin!  

Are you finding out the gender of your baby – why?

We decided not to find out the gender, as I have always wanted my first pregnancy to be  a complete surprise. There are such few good surprises in life and we believe this is the best one anyone could experience!.. to see if our babe is a little princess or prince! 

Tell us one thing you can’t live without while pregnant

I’ve been very fortunate to have had a very very easy pregnancy so far and haven’t had to invest in many pregnancy products to ‘ease’ my pregnancy. But I would say living in London and it being winter while I’m pregnant, I cannot live without my pregnancy tights! I’ve been living in them so far as it’s just too cold to wear dresses and uncomfortable to wear jeans all the time. 

What is your favourite beauty product while pregnant and why do you love it so much?

When I became pregnant I noticed my face became very sensitive and started using the Mama Mio 3 Step Glow which really calmed my skin down and cleared it up, along with their Tummy Rub which is amazing! I love trying new products and when I ran out about 3 weeks ago, I started using the Burt Bee’s Mama Bee range- its face day cream, night cream and it’s tummy rub- it’s also been really great and I am really loving these products! I see they also have a Baby Bee range for when the little one arrives- can’t wait to try it! I love both brands and my skin has shown that natural is better! 

What is your favourite food or are you having any cravings while pregnant?

No specific cravings as such but have most certainly given into the carbs and treats more often than usual. If anything I’ve had an aversion to certain foods (unfortunately mostly healthy ones) that I use to enjoy before pregnancy like raw spinach and chicken.

What preggy books or apps are you using?

When I fell pregnant I flooded my shelves with every “must have” book. My main focus up to date has been pregnancy and how to create a easy transition from womb to world for the baby, along with creating healthy and good sleeping habits from the get go. I have read What to Expect When You Are Expecting- Heidi Murkoff , Baby Sense and Sleep Sense- Megan Faure and Ann Richardson and  Secrets of the Baby Whisperer- Tracy Hogg which were all highly recommended! They all seem logical and practical and therefore not too overwhelming! The Apps I’m currently using are: Ovia Pregnancy and The Bump. I plan use Baby Sense when my baby is born.

How would you describe your pregnancy style and where do you shop for preggy clothes?

I haven’t had to shop for pregnancy clothes as such. I have tried to buy oversized tees and flowy dresses that I can continue to wear after pregnancy. My style has always been quite casual and relaxed. My go-to outfit is maternity tights, oversized tees and sneakers. I’m currently out in SA and loving wearing my maxi wrap dresses and sandals. I love ASOS for stylish maternity clothes that you can also wear after pregnancy. 

What is your exercise regime and how has it changed with your pregnancy?

With it being winter in London, it is very hard to get motivated but no matter what, I try to do at least an hour of exercise a day, 6 days a week. I’ve had to change my exercise regime quite a lot from weight training and vigiorous HIT cardio to own body weight exercises and light to moderate endurance cardio. It can get a bit boring so I mix it up between barre, spinning, walking and the cross trainer. For my last trimester  as my body is getting heavier and slowing down week by week, I will only do Pilates and swimming as I have researched that they are the best form of exercise while pregnant

Have you decided on a birth plan, are you going natural or having a caesar?

At the moment natural if all goes according to plan. As long as baby and I are healthy at the end I’m not fussed.  

In preparation for your baby what are your most over whelming thoughts/ worries/concerns?

That I have a healthy baby and that I will be the best mother  I can be in bringing up my child. 

How did you tell your husband you were pregnant? And when did you break the news to friends and family?

I got him his favourite food, pizza, and wrote with some sirracha sauce on the side “you going to be a daddy!”. We were both incredibly excited and filled with joy! but it felt very surreal for a while as on NHS you don’t have any blood/urine tests or ultrasounds to confirm the pregnancy until the first 12 week scan. I took about four home pregnancy tests over the first 8 weeks JUST in case and then went for a private scan at 8 weeks- it was the coolest and most overwhelming experience for both of us to see our little tot and hear it’s healthy heartbeat. We then told immediate family and one close couple at 10 weeks and then broke the news to friends and extended family at 12 weeks.  

Dream babymoon destination? 

I didn’t have a babymoon but my dream babymoon would definitely be a relaxing beach resort holiday- somewhere like Mauritius, Thailand or the Maldives, with just my husband and bump. 

What has surprised you the most about being pregnant?

 How easy my pregnancy has been so far! And that I have felt completely normal. Although I must confess I was exhausted for the first 12 weeks.. I haven’t had to change my lifestyle in any way yet except it’s become bit slower. 

What is the best pregnancy advice you have received?

To enjoy all the sleep and alone time with your husband you can get because that is going to change very soon!

To keep up to date on the rest of Cara’s pregnancy follow her on Instagram.

Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly.Update my browser now

×