Thursday, 8 December 2016

When Two Became Three

While pregnant one of the most exciting things I was looking forward too was Paige and Parker meeting Harleigh. Of course I couldn't wait to meet her but I was so excited to see all three of my babies together. It was a moment that I'd imagined in my head and one that I wish I could relive over and over again.
The first to meet Harleigh was Paige. Mainly because Parker had to be at nursery for half 8 and Paige started school later. Mark stopped off by the hospital before dropping her off to school. We always knew that Paige would be an amazing big sister as she already is but she loves Harleigh so much. She said from the very start of my pregnancy that she wanted a baby sister and that is what she got.
Paige beamed from ear to ear when she met Harleigh. It brought tears to my eyes. You could clearly see how much she loved her already. She fully understood that she wasn't in my belly anymore and that she was here to stay. She walked over to Harleigh and immediately started stroking her hand and face. Next she wanted to hold her. She sat in that blue chair and looked so proud to be holding her baby sister. I will never forget that moment.
Parker came to visit after nursery and just before they let us go home. Harleigh was already in her car seat, we were ready to go. He walked into the room and shouted for me. We said hello and had a cuddle and then I pointed down to the car seat. He walked straight over to Harleigh, said her name and then stroked her head and feet. He was so gentle. We then headed home and he very proudly wanted to help daddy carry the car seat out to the car.

We weren't sure how Parker would react but he is the best big brother. They are both adjusting to the new addition so well, we couldn't be prouder. How did your little ones adjust to new siblings?

Nicola Xx

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

The Bump Company

If you follow me on Instagram you may remember seeing that we were chosen to be brand reps for The Bump Company. We recently received our first parcel from them and I wanted to share what we received.

The Bump Company are a small team who put together gorgeous baby gifts and keepsakes. They have everything from baby shower items, nappy cakes and new mum gifts. The clothing bouquets are all handmade to order.

Everything was packaged so gorgeously. I really is nice when a company takes care when packaging an item especially if the item would usually be bought as a gift. New mum/baby gifts are always so special to buy so you want to know that when your gift arrives it will look just as gorgeous as it does on the website, with The Bump Company it will!

We received some gorgeous things from the new items. First up was the very sweet Baby Sock Bud. This is a gorgeous pair of socks wrapped up to look like a flower.

Next up are these equally as cute Fairy Cakes. These are a set of four pairs of socks. These are again packaged in a way to make them look like something else, this time some lovely fairy cakes. I love the idea of having them look like something else. It makes them such a lovely gift and so lovely to send and receive.
Next up are the Macaron Delights box set which are again socks that are packaged to look like macarons. In this set you get five pairs of socks ad each is wrapped to look like a macaron.
Last up is the Lickety Split Lollipop. This is a gorgeous 70cm x 70cm 100% cotton muslin
square wrapped to look like a lollipop. The muslin is soft and thick, it feels lovely and washes really well.

All the items we received are really lovely quality and so soft. I love that they are all really practical gifts but that they look really lovely too.
The items we were sent were more girly for baby girl but they do boy versions and gender neutral ones too.

We were also sent two little teddies for Paige and Parker, such a lovely thoughtful gift. Thank you!

I have a great competition for you to win a £50 voucher to spoil yourself or someone special. To enter simply use the rafflecopter form below and good luck!

Nicola Xx

•Competition will close on the 21st December 2016.
•Winners will be chosen at random.
•The prize cannot be transferred and no cash alternative is available.
•Voucher will be provided by The Bump Company.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

DIY Newborn Pictures

I've always taken newborn pictures after each pregnancy. I just love the newborn stage, it's by far one of my favourite. I love how cuddly newborns are and how curled up they are. They are so new and so precious. If I could keep my babies newborns forever I would.
When Harleigh arrived I knew I wanted to take some pictures of her just like I had with Paige and Parker. I originally wanted both Paige and Parker in the pictures too but I've found it hard having the opportunity to get Paige in the pictures with school. I will keep trying!
Here are Harleighs newborn pictures...

Did you have newborn pictures taken or take some yourself?
Nicola Xx

Friday, 2 December 2016

Our Amazing Water Birth - Harleigh

I honestly still can't believe that Harleigh is here. I was convinced that she would be late and would arrive after her due date. Her due date was November 23rd. I never really mentioned it throughout my pregnancy as babies don't tend to arrive on their due dates so I felt like it didn't really matter.

I had my 39 week midwife appointment on November 15th when I was 38+6. Everything went well at that appointment. The midwife said that baby wasn't engaged but that it most likely wouldn't happen until I was in labour. My dad had predicted that baby girl would arrive that day and I mentioned this to the midwife and she said that she didn't think labour would happen soon. I was convinced it wouldn't. 
The next day I turned 39 weeks. During the day everything was very normal, until 5pm. Tea was almost ready and I started having pains. They were really irregular and not too painful at this point. I honestly thought they were braxton hicks, then the pain started to travel down the front of my legs. This happened in Parkers labour too but I still refused to believe I was in labour. I carried on with tea and started our evening routine.
By 6:30pm we were putting the kids to bed, the contractions were still quite irregular and I decided to get in the bath. I figured that if they were just braxton hicks then a bath would stop them. My first few contractions while in the bath were so far apart then they became more regular. By 8pm I was fed up of the bath and decided to phone the birth centre. My contractions were lasting 40 seconds and coming every 8 ish minutes. The midwife said it sounded like proper labour and to get back in the bath. She told me to phone back if the contractions became too painful to talk through or if they started lasting for 60 seconds. I jumped back in the bath and actually had to get out after half an hour as I really felt like I needed to move around. An hour later I phoned the birth centre back. The contractions were a lot more painful and coming every 2/3/4 minutes. We also called my dad who came over to watch Paige and Parker who were sleeping. While we waited for my dad to arrive I was bouncing on my ball.
We arrived at the birth centre at around 9:40pm. The midwife was alone so wanted to check me, if I was in active labour then she would of needed to call the on call midwife to come in. She checked me at 10:10pm and I was 2cm, fully effaced and baby girl was fully engaged. The midwife gave me a little stretch and sweep. At 2cm I wasn't in active labour but because this was my third labour and I was contracting nicely the midwife didn't want to send me home for fear I'd give birth really quickly. So we were allowed to stay in the room, use the pool and just continue. I was due to be checked again at 2:10am as they can only check every four hours. The midwife left me and mark for an hour and then came back to check on us. The contractions were getting more and more painful and she knew that I was progressing, so much so that she then called the on call midwife. 
At around 12:30-1am I was starting to get tired. I really wanted to know how far along I was but she couldn't check me yet. She did say she thought that we'd have a baby by 3am. Apparently while in labour there's a purple line that appears and progresses as you dilate so the midwife knew I was progressing well without checking me.
Last bump picture, I dropped so much during the start of labour.
The midwife checked in on the heartbeat every 15 minutes and everything was fine. Baby girl was moving up a storm and all my stats were always spot on. I was in the pool for the most part and the midwife just let me get on with it which was lovely. She really stood back and watched. She let me and Mark work through each contraction as a team. He was such a lovely support. The midwife advised Mark to make me some toast to give me a little energy boost as I was pretty tired but I didn't manage to eat it all.
During labour
At around 2:05am in between contractions I had the urge to talk to my belly, seems a little crazy writing that now but at the time it felt so natural. I said "ok baby girl, we are doing so well but mummy is getting tired. If you could come in the next 5 minutes that would be amazing". 
We all laughed afterwards!
Around five minutes later the midwife was out of the room. I had a contraction and felt baby girls head. The midwife came back into the room and I told her I thought I could feel her head. During the next contraction she looked and confirmed what I already knew, she was coming. She listened to me! During the next two contractions I pushed when my body told me to. Just before her head came out my waters broke. The midwife then started saying that during the next contraction I was to slowly breathe her out but there wasn't time. I said "I can't, she's coming now" and sure enough Harleigh was born at 2:20am. She was born in the same pool as Parker and weighed the same as him too at 6lb 14oz. 
She was born into the pool and the midwife told me to reach down and get her. I was looking in the water saying "where is she" I reached down and picked her out. I love that the midwife didn't touch her or I. She trusted me and my body to know what I needed to do. She let me reach down and pick her up out of the water. I love that I was the first to touch her.
I placed her straight on my chest and couldn't believe that she was there so quickly. We waited a little while for the cord to stop pulsing but I told them I thought the placenta was coming. I felt like I knew my body so well during this labour, it was amazing. They were then a little concerned about my bleeding as the pool started turning red so Mark quite quickly cut the cord and had skin to skin with Harleigh. I then got out of the pool to deliver the placenta which came very quickly.
Everything was ok with my bleeding and they weren't concerned. In the water there just looked to be a lot more blood than there actually was.
We were left to bond with Harleigh and I was checked to see if I needed stitches. She came that quickly that I did need a few stitches. An hour later I was all sorted out and Harleigh had her checks and got weighed.
Mark had to leave then and go back home so it was just me and Harleigh. I got showered, moved rooms and had some food.
Giving birth is such a high I couldn't sleep at all. I laid in bed and rested but just watched Harleigh sleeping.
Nicola Xx
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