Leyla PrestonFounder of Motherhood Diaries and mum to two boys aged 9 and 10 and three girls (1 angel baby, a 21 month old and a 1 week old!)
What are you looking for?
It has taken me a long time to pluck up the courage to write this post. I don’t know why; the outcome has been successful, but it hasn’t been so clear cut.
In my previous posts in the ‘Journey to getting my girl‘ series, I have been clear that I wouldn’t mind having a third boy if that’s what it comes to. I just wanted another baby. But losing my girl hit me very hard and left me aching for my princess.
It took us fourteen months to get pregnant after my miscarriage, and to say it has been a tough slog has been an understatement.
In the first two articles, I talked about working with a company called Urobiologics who have been the first of their kind to claim women can select the gender of the baby by the hormonal environment present in their womb, i.e. women have alternating boy and girl cycles. You can read more about this process in Part 1 and Part 2 of the series and my article on women and gender selection.
When a couple shares they are getting engaged, it is often the first time the kids find out about their new additions or how serious the relationship really is. But what do you say to the kids? How do you tell them about your engagement? And how do you plan an announcement for the kids without scaring them or making them feel left out? Here are some tips on how to tell kids about your engagement.
Know your audience
Should you make a video?
Announce it in front of everyone at your child’s school assembly?
Buy the newspaper space and print an obituary for yourself titled “R.I.P. Mum”?
All of these are jokes obviously.
But there is nothing wrong with wanting to be creative or even trying some fun ways to engage your kids into knowing their family is going to be expanding soon.
When you become a parent, you pretty much say goodbye to your regular restful sleep. From experiencing staggered sleep during the night to early morning starts, even if you haven’t slept the night before. This is the new norm, now. And, since your sleep habits have been skewed, you find that you are having trouble sleeping, even when you do get the small window of opportunity to close your eyes.
Not getting enough sleep isn’t just limited to parents, it affects everyone; whether you’re worrying about work, you’re having financial problems (companies like creditfix.co.uk can help you with your debt management. Find out more here) or your brain simply won’t switch off! Why is something so simple like falling asleep, so difficult now? Well, you’re having trouble sleeping because your body clock is out of whack. So the aim is to work out how you’re going to fix your body clock so that it works around your new normal. The key is consistency and adopting healthy sleep habits as much as you can help it. Below are four tips to sleep better at night – even during nightly wake up calls!
Are you expecting a baby? Then you need a babymoon!
Babymoon vacations provide plenty of benefits for expectant parents like a chance for couples to unwind and connect before they face the challenges of parenthood.
Whether you are planning babymoon ideas with friends or just your partner, there are a few things to check off the list to ensure you get maximum enjoyment out of your holiday before baby comes.
Here are some babymoon ideas to enjoy while you still can, focusing on Iceland as one of the best babymoon locations for expecting parents.
What’s a babymoon?
*This post is sponsored by Ameliorate but all thoughts and opinions are 100% my own
For those who have experienced bumpy skin or ‘chicken skin’, as keratosis pilaris is otherwise called, then you will know exactly what this article will be about.
We will go through what keratosis pilaris is, what the symptoms are, what causes keratosis pilaris in toddlers and children, and how to treat the skin condition using a fantastic tried and tested moisturiser called the Transforming Body Lotion from Ameliorate* that is shaking the nation of keratosis pilaris sufferers due to its proven results.
More on that below!
What is keratosis pilaris?
Keratosis pilaris is a harmless and very common skin condition that appears as small bumps on your skin, often in patches on your arms (sometimes just the upper arms), thighs or bottom. They can appear in other places too and last for a long time. The bumps can also be itchy, red, white, skin-toned or darker than your skin. You may find that symptoms improve in the summer and worsen in the winter when it’s colder and your skin is dryer.
What a crazy experience!
I could not have foreseen how it all started and how it ended with my fourth and final baby.
I will preface this story by saying that I did everything to encourage my baby out naturally. I followed all the natural induction techniques and I pushed the scheduled Caesarean for 41 weeks to 41+5, but baby had no interest in coming out yet.
The night before my C section, I didn’t eat or drink anything from 10 pm and took the offered two omeprazole to reduce my stomach acidity before the operation. I woke up at 5 am after a vivid dream of missing my C section (I was secretly miffed that I hadn’t actually missed it). Surprisingly, all three kids had woken up too. They must have sensed what was to happen today and my frayed nerves.
I took my second two tablets at 6 am with my last sip of water and called Watford Hospital to confirm the time to come in, which we were told was 7 am. We dropped the kids at the grandparents’ and headed to the Katherine Ward at 7.10 am where we were asked to complete a Covid PCR test for me and a lateral flow test for hubby. Thankfully, the results were negative, so we could continue with our baby journey.
I was starving as I had been nil by mouth since 10 pm, yet hubby was busy munching away on the snacks he bought me for post-surgery. A consultant doctor came to see me while I waited on a hospital bed that had a nightgown and compression socks sitting patiently on top in anticipation of the surgery. The doctor must have spied the sheer horror on my face after she confirmed I was scheduled for a c section because she asked whether I had been offered a new type of induction that involves Dilapan and is safe for previous c section patients. The new induction doesn’t involve the hormonal drip syntocinon so it doesn’t cause artificial labour and place unnecessary risk on uterine scars.
I replied I hadn’t but had no idea what this new induction process was. She explained that Dilapan works by placing rods inside to soften and open the cervix enough to break the waters. She hoped the process would stir my baby enough to incite contractions. They also offered an epidural during the procedure, which I happily accepted. You don’t get a medal for taking labour pain!
We had to wait three hours in the Katherine Ward until we were taken to the Victoria Ward where I could stay in a private room. Hubby had to leave at this point and could only return once I was in active labour. And who knows when that was going to happen, seeing as I had only felt tightenings at this point. I was offered a lunch menu, but there was more waiting around. I mentioned I was to be prepped as GBS positive, which wasn’t stated previously by any other doctor. I had to mention again to be sure because I had heard a horrible story recently that a mother’s newborn baby had died from contracting Group B Strep and as I was tested positive during my miscarriage in 2017 and was treated for antibiotics in 2019 with my third baby, I didn’t want to risk this little lady.
On Thursday 12th September at around 12.30 am, at 39+4 weeks pregnant, I waddled upstairs to try to get some sleep. As I laid down, I heard a very loud pop. That’s weird I thought. At first, I thought something had burst in my belly, but when I went to the toilet, I experienced trickling which didn’t stop.
I went downstairs to tell my husband that I think my water just broke. Hubby, who was still absent-mindedly watching TV, and having heard this three times from me before, double-checked if I hadn’t just peed myself again. But, as soon as he finished that sentence, more liquid trickled down my leg.
Hubby gasped and agreed that my waters had broken.
It took hubby about 30 seconds to grab a towel, but by the time he had come back, I had a puddle on the floor and my knickers were soaked through. I called my parents to ask if one of them could look after our older two boys, as they were asleep and they had school the next day.
It has been over three years since I wrote Part 2 of Journey to getting my girl, and there is a reason for the delay.
But, to continue with the series, we’ll start from where we left off in Part 2. If you haven’t read any of the ‘Journey to getting my girl’ series, then I suggest you start with Part 1 here, so you understand the backstory.
To summarise, the series talks about my husband and I following a non-invasive conception plan to get my girl using Dr Verma of Urobiologics’ two tests, the PreGender Test which determines whether the female’s menstrual cycle favours a boy or girl via non-invasive urine sampling and the FirstGender Test which determines the gender of the baby via a urine sample from conception has been proven with 95% accuracy! Urobiologics discovered that that just like there are two kinds of sperm (which determine the gender), women have alternating boy-girl specific menstrual cycles (which select the gender).
We had already sent our samples in and Dr Verma sent us our conception plan to try for a girl.
My family love embarking upon new adventures, especially when it involves travel and a luxury place to stay, even if for just one night. Back in 2017, we enjoyed a lovely Family Fun Package stay at The Arch London Hotel in Marble Arch, and the kids loved it so much that we secured another stay at The Arch London, this time with an Easter twist. The Arch London kindly offered us the chance to review their Easter Family Fun Package over the Easter weekend (20/21st April) and stay in the newly refurbished Juniper Suite. We also got to enjoy an in-room Easter egg hunt, delicious 3-course meal at the Hotel’s Hunter 486 restaurant, after dinner milk and cookies and complimentary breakfast the next morning. It was a fantastic stay, which we won’t forget in a hurry.
Stay tuned for our extensive review of the Easter Family Fun Package at The Arch London, which includes a sudden unforeseen event which the hotel dealt with promptly!