Bombus Map Print review and GIVEAWAY!

If you have been reading my blog for a while then you will know that I am quite a soppy, sentimental person. I love anything that is personalised or that comes with meaning and thought behind it. Recently I was sent something that I think just may be one of my most favourite things that I have ever been sent because it is so 'me'. Not only have I been sent one BUT I have also been given the chance for one of my lucky readers to win one too! What is this 'thing' that I am talking about?

Well here it is...


How many other women? | Blog

When you fall pregnant for the first time you are blind. You have no idea what is right, what is wrong, what your options are, when to speak up...the list is endless and as you have never had a baby before therefore you can feel lost. You listen to those around you for advice and support. Your mum, midwives, healthcare professionals, friends. But when it come to what you feel you are ''allowed' to do you listen to your midwives and the doctors as you think that is the best thing to do. I mean, if is a health care professional telling you what to do so it must be right?


When I had Pickle 3 years ago I listened to everything I was told. I was told I was told my BMI was too high to have a water birth so I nodded along and wiped my much longer for water birth out of my mind because I was told I was too fat to have it. I was told I needed to have an epidural because I was being induced, therefore I wouldn't be able to cope with the pain and that would raise my already elevated blood pressure. I nodded, took the epidural and did what I was told. Why wouldn't I? This was my first baby and this was what I was being told to do by people who I thought knew best. As they were saying it, I obviously didn't have a choice did I?


Throughout this pregnancy I have been learning and practising hypnobirthing (thanks to the amazing team at Do it Like a Mother) and I have decided that I would like to stay as mobile as possible during my labour, use water as pain relief and try to avoid too much medical intervention if possible. By that I mean that I don't really wanted to be hooked up to 6 different monitors like I was last time and I really want to avoid an epidural if I can. Now I am not naïve. I have done my research and am also fully aware that sometimes nature takes it's course and things don't go to plan. I know that things could go wrong and I could end up having forceps or an epidural or even a C-Section. Ultimately the health of my baby and me is the most important thing BUT at present everything is perfect. My blood pressure is great, baby is a perfect size, I am in good health, keeping active and having no issues whatsoever APART from having a high BMI that I had when I started my pregnancy. Due to this I thought I would start thinking about having a water birth and possibly having a home water birth to allow me to stay as relaxed and calm as possible to hopefully give me a quicker, less painful labour than last time.

I have spoken to 5 different healthcare professionals in the last 2 days. The first told me point blank I wouldn't be allowed a water birth and couldn't sign a facilitating women's choices form to request one. Apparently, health and safety would mean the staff wouldn't be able to get me out of the water if I collapsed and there would be no point in signing a form because it would be ignored. The next 3 told me I could have a water birth and that there would be no reason I couldn't. One of these professionals was my consultant and another was the head of midwifery at my local hospital. They both said I could sign the form and that there would be no health and safety risk as the staff are well trained to cope in all instances. The final person said that I could request a home birth but she wouldn't be happy attending to me at home because it would be too risky but ultimately someone would have to come out if I went down that route. She also explained that I could request a water birth and sign a form but once again I could be too risky for the staff as I collapsed in the pool they wouldn't be able to get me out so therefore she wouldn't recommend it.

There are so many things wrong with what I have had to face in the past 2 days. Firstly, how can so many different people who all abide by the same set of rules, regulations and guidelines say such different things? Where I work, we have a set of rules and policies that we follow. You don't get a different service from one branch or store to another. The rules that we follow are uniform across the whole company. Surely this should be the same within the NHS. Women CAN sign a facilitating women's choices form...that is a FACT! Why was I told I couldn't? Why was I told that someone wouldn't be happy with me having a home birth and wouldn't recommend me doing so? Would we accept it if we went into a clothes shop and had the shop assistant say 'sorry but you can't buy that top' or 'sorry that top won't look right on you because your a size 18'? NO!! If you want the top then you buy the top and it is your choice and your right to do so! How many other women have been told no and not questioned it as they thought the same as I did with my first baby? I thought that because I was being told it by someone from the NHS then it has to be gospel and I couldn't possibly question it. How is that right?!?!?!

Secondly, how can women be treated so different yet pigeon holed so easily (huge oxymoron there I know but bare with). I have a friend who is at the same point in her pregnancy as me. She started this process .5 of a percent lower on her BMI score so therefore hasn't been subjected to the same scrutiny as me. She has actually put on THE SAME AMOUNT of weight as me in her pregnancy but yet she has been told that all birthing options are open to her and that in fact she should enjoy pregnancy and not to worry about weight. I, on the other hand, am being penalised and having my options reduced massively just because I started this process slightly heavier than my friend. My friend and I are the same body shape, same clothing size, the same in our activity level yet I am slightly heavier than her. THIS MAKES NO SENSE!!! Why am I not being given the same rights as her? Why are my wishes around birth any less important than hers? We are pretty much the same yet treated so differently. Just because my BMI is .5% higher than the 'limit' I am instantly treated like someone who can't move around or get in or out of a bath! It's absurd! Women are different and their needs differ from woman to woman. Women cannot be pigeon holed and surely options should be open to discussion for all women and should be considered based on their own needs and situation.

Finally, I am trying to help. We see on a daily basis how the NHS is understaffed, how hospitals are full to breaking point, how there isn't enough money for trusts to cope... I am happy to birth at home, if I can, with as little medical intervention as possible. I don't want to be strapped to a bed in hospital, taking up NHS resources and being given expensive medicine and treatments. If I needed it then I would go to the hospital and get help as the staff previously when I had our son were fantastic BUT if I don't need to be in hospital then why should I?!?! Give that bed to someone who seriously needs it. Not to me just because I 'might' have an issue. If an issue arises then we are 5 minutes away. Why waste money and resource on me if it isn't necessary and if I don't want it??

The thing that makes me most angry about this whole situation is a question that I can't stop from entering my mind.

How many other women?

How many other women have had to fight for their basic rights when it comes to birth? How many other women have been misinformed and just nodded along? How many other women have not expressed their wishes for their births because they are supressed into think it 'isn't allowed'?

Everything about this is wrong!! It feels like something is broken somewhere and I don't know where. But what I do know is this experience has ignited a fire under me to challenge and get change. I will fight for my birth and I will fight for all the other women who are supressed, pigeon holed and misinformed!

Watch this space. 

Dressing your bump for a wedding  |  Review 

It is just me or do you always get invited to weddings and parties when you are pregnant?? I have gone 3 years without being invited to a wedding and then when I am pregnant I have two to go to! I was looking around trying to find anything that would be suitable and that I would feel comfortable in and it was so difficult!! I am just so grateful that I came across Bump it Up Maternity when I did because they well and truly saved my bacon.

Bump It Up is a plus size maternity range that is available from Yours and it is filled with beautiful, comfy BUT NOT frumpy maternity clothes for women size 16-32. All of the clothes are beautifully made, so affordable and has something for everyone and every occasion.

I was sent 3 different dresses for my best friends wedding that, in my opinion, would be perfect for different types of wedding. Firstly you have the gorgeous dress that I wore on the day. This is the beautiful magenta wrap over jersey midi dress which I fell in love with! The colour is so beautiful and the dress is really flattering whilst being super comfy. At no point during the wedding did I find myself pulling it down or adjusting it. I just rocked it and felt amazing!!!!


28 weeks pregnancy update  |  Pregnancy

So here it is... the third trimester! I can’t quite believe it if I’m being honest. This pregnancy has gone so quick and I can’t believe that in about 12 weeks time we will have our baby!!! I have been really awful at doing pregnancy updates but if I’m being totally honest this pregnancy so far has been pretty straight forward so if I was updating every week it would be a little samey and boring. I figured that now I’m at the end of the second trimester it would be a good time to update how things have been.


Disney Baby Patch Comforter | Review & GIVEAWAY

If you have been reading my blog for a while or if you look at any of my social media then you will know that my family and I are huge Disney nuts! Hubby and I met and got engaged at Disneyland, Pickle loves all things Disney and we have been back to Disneyland twice since Pickle has been with us. So it’s no surprise that we want to include Disney in the new baby’s life when he comes along and this Disney Baby “My First Patch” is the perfect way to add a little Disney to our baby’s life.

Feeling good in Maternity clothes  |  Blog

It can be so hard to feel comfortable and yet still feel stylish when you are waddling around feeling the size of a whale BUT I have found this pregnancy that you can still feel good in maternity clothes! When I had Pickle I think I thought I should look frumpy... I was going to be a Mum so needed to dress practical and wear sensible clothes. What I didn’t understand is that sensible didn’t have to be boring and frumpy so today I wanted to share with you my top tips for staying comfortable whilst feeling and looking good in pregnancy.

1. Get a good bra

Bras are fundamental to a look even though you can’t see it. Bras help us feel secure, confident and supported and the last thing you want when your boobs are a bit achy anyway is to be sticking with your pre pregnancy underwired bras as they are just uncomfortable. On the flip side, maternity bras can leave you feeling and looking unsupported and droopy which also isn’t good for your back or posture. I would highly recommend investing in a premium bra that has no underwire yet gives you some decent support. Something like the below would be perfect.
Photo from Knix website

2. Dress to your strengths 

Feel most confident about your bump? Show it off! Loving your new pregnancy boobi? Rock them! Feeling uncomfortable and “whale” escque? Dress in comfies! Do what you feel as when you dress for you and not other people you will feel so much more comfortable! During this pregnancy I have been loving my bump and have made sure my outfits compliment and show my bump off rather than hiding it away under baggy clothes.

3. Maxi dresses are your best friend 

Maxi dresses are so easy to wear whilst still being stylish. The best thing is that they are so versatile as you can dress them 
down with a pair of converse or flip flops or you can dress them up with jewellery and some cute sandals. The best part is that they are super comfortable to wear no matter what stage of pregnancy you are at. 

4. Mix it up 

Got a really comfy summer dress that you want to wear but it’s raining outside? Don’t worry... still wear the dress but just accessorise to the season. Wear your dress with black tights, ankle boots and a leather jacket to instantly go from summer to autumn meaning that your super comfy dress that makes you feel great can be worn no matter what the weather.

5. Invest in some great basics

I’m all for wearing my pre pregnancy clothes for as long as I can but there are somethings that you will need no matter how hard you try. Basics such as vest tops, leggings and jeans are a maternity must and I would recommend investing in some decent quality basics as you will be surprised how much you wear them. When I had Pickle I brought cheap and cheerful maternity jeans and the quality was naff. In the last trimester I was in maternity clothes pretty much the whole time so it is definitely worth paying a little more for items you know will last and you won’t have to repurchase.

So there we have it. My top tips for staying comfortable yet still feeling stylish in your pregnancy. Think I’ve missed anything or have any tips that helped you feel stylish during pregnancy? Let me know in the comments below!

Note: This is a sponsored post


Why I’m more scared of giving birth second time round | Blog

Ignorance is bliss


For me that was definitely the case when it came to giving birth! When I was pregnant with Pickle I had been to all the antenatal classes, read books, looked at apps, even watched some videos on YouTube all about birth. I thought I was prepared and ready to give birth. Turns out I was wrong!
The birth that I had planned for with Pickle (and I use the term 'planned' very loosely as I was very open minded about everything and was happy to consider all options when going into hospital) was thrown up in the air when I was told I was being induced at 37 weeks. It turned out to be a long processed that wasn’t painful but was just a bit of an emotional rollercoaster. I ended up with an epidural and being threatened with having to have a c-section but it all worked out for the best in the end and got our little man here safely via a vaginal birth. I remember being in the hospital and my Mum saying that she couldn’t believe how calm I was being about everything but I think that was because I had no preconceptions or ideas of what could or couldn’t happen. This time round though, it feels like the total opposite!