Why My Body Feels Like A Ticking Time Bomb

Why My Body Feels Like A Ticking Time Bomb

Pregnancy is meant to be a time of joyful anticipation. As due date approaches, the “I wonder when” is thought often and with a little smile. Butterflies start to flutter in the very round, full tummies of women around the world as they eagerly await the arrival of their little bundle of joy.

I’m not feeling it.

I am certainly waiting. But not for the arrival of a little person. Or the feeling of those first contractions.

I am waiting to feel a warm gush. To see an unwanted red stain. To have that wave of panic set in again.

This is what it feels like to have placenta previa. You feel like a ticking time bomb.

You wait and wait, for that bleed you’ve been told is likely. You wonder when it might happen. You wonder how big is it going to be. You wonder if it will be the catalyst to you ending up in hospital for weeks. Or maybe it will be the moment your baby is brought into the world, weeks too soon. Will you be alone when it happens? Will you be doing the grocery shopping? Will you be at work? Will it be the rude awakening from a good night’s sleep?

I am currently 32 weeks pregnant. 2 weeks ago at 11pm, as I lay in bed, I felt that warm gush. A familiar feeling to any woman over the age of 13. It’s a feeling you’re not meant to have when you’re pregnant. I jumped out of bed, pulled down my pyjama pants to find a large blood stain on my underwear and through to my pyjama pants. Panic set in.

Legoman was away in the bush, out of phone reception. I was home alone with our 2 year old toddler. She was sound asleep in her room. I called my best friend (who thankfully and wonderfully lives one block away), who was already awake with her 10 month old. She was on her way. I broke down on the phone and she straight away came to my house. I tried calling my midwife, no answer. I tried calling the hospital, an answering machine. I tried my husband in desperation, voicemail. My midwife called me back just as my best friend opened my front door. She held me as I attempted to pack a bag. My amazing midwife was on her way to pick me up.

I was shaking so much at this point. Still feeling the bleeding, not knowing what would happen next.

I kept thinking that my daughter would wake up and I won’t be there. Neither will her daddy. It was the first night I had ever had away from her. Not the circumstances that milestone should happen in.

At hospital they cannulated me, told me I couldn’t eat or drink and gave me the first dose of steroids, in case my baby needed to be delivered. In case my baby needed to be delivered. That was not what I wanted to hear. My husband wasn’t there. This couldn’t be happening.

An ambulance took me to a bigger hospital where I was taken into Delivery Suite. All this time, my wonderful little baby was wriggling around and doing amazingly well. This helped me to stay calm and focused. An ultrasound at 3:30am confirmed that baby was fine and the bleeding had also slowed right down. Everyone started to relax. I could eat again. I could attempt to sleep.

5:30am came and I was woken up by the woman in the room next to me going through the final throws of labour. A few loud screams of “GET IT OUT OF ME!!!” had me giggling in bed, knowing how very close she was to meeting her little person. 10 minutes later the cries of a new life welcomed a quite calm. Life goes on.

6am saw me calling my parents to firstly tell them (but hopefully not alarm them) that I was in hospital. I also needed them 1.5 hours drive away at my house to look after my daughter. Off they went.

7am – phone call from my best friend to say good morning to my daughter. She was handling the surprise of waking up to Aunty very well. The promise of croissants in the kitchen got her out of bed.

10am – up to antenatal ward now that the red blood had stopped. But the cannula remained in my arm until I was discharged, just in case.

3pm – I finally got to speak to my husband. He was calm, way too calm.

6pm – I got to see Legoman.

The next 24 hours involved lots of visitors, waiting, Pad checks (those poor nurses) and nervous exhaustion. I also had to call my work and tell them I wouldn’t be in as I was in hospital. I was discharged home once the brown spotting had stopped and a more thorough ultrasound showed baby was fine and my placenta was still too low. The cannula came out (thank goodness) and I was put on “pelvic rest”. Which basically means nothing goes in. A friend at work thinks this is a brilliant idea and wishes someone would issue her a medical certificate that she can show her husband!

I got through the first bleed. And now I wait for a second one. No one can tell me what the chances are that I will get a second bleed. No one can tell me if my placenta will move enough to avoid a c-section. All I keep hearing is “Every placenta previa is different”. Helpful.

Hearing the stories of other women in a similar situation has been amazing support. I have joined a couple of Facebook groups and a forum where women support each other through these exhausting, emotional pregnancies. There is so much power in sharing our stories. One common thread is we are all hopeful. Hopeful to reach close to our due dates. Hopeful for no more bleeds. Hopeful our child comes into the world in a calm way and not through an emergency. Hopeful for those very first cuddles.

I would love to hear from you if you have had placenta previa or are going through a similar experience at the moment. Together we can all get through this.

After my bleed I made an Emergency Phone Numbers list to stick on our fridge and to share with family and friends. I am hoping we never have to use it. You can grab a copy for yourself here.

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Make Friends With Your Kitchen

Make Friends With Your Kitchen
As a working mother, it can feel overwhelming having to feed my little clan. Plus I have standards darn it! Which means no takeaway and minimal processed food, because really not only is home made better for you and cheaper, a lot of the time it’s more delicious too!

Chatting to my mummy pals, basically what we all want is for meal times to be calm, simple and hopefully even enjoyable.

I have made a list for you of some hints and tips to help make your kitchen your friend. Hopefully a life long friend that you share with your family rather than a friend you only talk to because you have to.

Make Friends With Your Kitchen

1. Have a plan. Meal planning has been a huge life saver for me and my family. Huge. I started when my daughter (now 2!) started having solids. I realised I couldn’t have a panic every day at 5pm trying to figure out what we were going to have for dinner. That just ain’t sustainable. Instead, I sit down once a week and write a meal plan. I shop once a week knowing exactly what we need. To learn more about meal planning click here. To download my free meal planning printable click here.

2. Have a clear working space. This is probably the thing I struggle with the most. I love cooking and hate cleaning. However, the wise mature me has learnt that doing the dishes makes me happy. Eventually. I try to have a clean kitchen before going to bed, but failing that (some nights it is too much) then after breakfast the kitchen gets a full clean. Come crazy dinner time you’ve got clear space and all equipment is clean and ready to go.

3. Keep it simple. Yes we could all make every single thing from scratch using organic ingredients. But really. Who has the time or money? Know your limits. Don’t plan a banquet feast on a day you have something on. Allow for tired days. Buy snacks. Have an idea of your emergency family favorite meals.

4. Clean as you go. When you start cooking, fill the sink with hot soapy water. Even if you just throw things in, it will make cleaning up easier later. Plus you will have an easy way of washing your hands.

5. Share the load. I love to cook but I love that I don’t have to do it every night even more!! I am so grateful that Legoman cooks dinner twice a week (2 of my 3 workdays). He is home with our daughter those days and so meals are his job. Does he love cooking? No. Does he love us? Surely does. This has helped me not be such a control freak in the kitchen too. Don’t have a hubby? Do a bulk cook up with girlfriends or plan to have meal swaps with families close by.

I hope these simple tips help you make friends with your kitchen. Not sure what to cook for dinner tonight? Try my delicious Roast Chicken with Garlic, Sage and Thyme or perhaps my Pumpkin, Leek and Millet Oven baked Risotto.

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Baby Led Weaning Shopping List

Baby Led Weaning Shopping List Essentials

Are you new to Baby Led Weaning? Not quite sure what things to have on hand for your little one? Use this handy shopping list at your next grocery shop!

Life with little ones can be so much easier when you’re prepared. I learnt this lesson when Possum started solids. It’s basically what led me to try meal planning!

Here I was in the kitchen everyday at 5pm with a hungry tot and absolutely no idea what to feed her let alone Legoman and myself! That’s not a happy head space to be in everyday. Since then meal planning has saved our hungry tummies and tired brains many times over.

But the other little trick that worked was getting to know what foods were easy, quick and nutritious for Possum to have. I would make sure these would go on our shopping list each week so that I knew there was always something in the house Possum could eat if she wasn’t too keen on whatever it was we were eating at that meal.

Here is a shopping list of great foods for baby led weaning so that you can have a quick reference and help your day run a little smoother. Is there anything you would add? I would love to hear and I can add to the list.

  • Banana – and here is a little trick to make it easy for bub to hold: use your little finger pushed into the end of a peeled banana to split into three segments. Game changer!
  • Sweet potato – makes sweet potato wedges super easily. Cut into wedges and roast at 180°C for 30 minutes or until starting to brown.
  • Field mushrooms – possum loooooooved to demolish a roasted field mushroom for dinner. Roast at 180°, smooth side down, with some olive oil for around 20-30 minutes. Cut in half to serve.
  • Cucumber – or cubumber as Possum now calls it. Cut into sixths for easy to hold chunks. We never bothered to peel it.
  • Oats – mix 3 Tbsp oats with 3 Tbsp water in a rounded dish then microwave for 2 minutes. Easy! Comes out as a very easy to hold oat biscuit.
  • Pear – allergy friendly and easy to munch.
  • Avocado – the perfect foot for baby led weaning! So much messy fun! Cut into chunks and have the bath (and camera) ready!
  • Yoghurt – plain full fat yoghurt. Offer on a preloaded spoon or put in a bowl and embrace the mess! A great substitution for sour cream in recipes too!

Now our Possum is two! We are really pleased to have gone down the Baby Led Weaning path. It was such a fun and enjoyable way to introduce food into her world. We are due with bub #2 in August and I am certainly going to choose to do Baby Led Weaning again. You can read a bit more about our Baby Led Weaning experiences here and here.

How’s Baby Led Weaning going for our family?

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Looking for some recipes for your little one? Here are some Baby Led Weaning winners:

Emergency Numbers For Pregnancy – Free Printable

Emergency Numbers In Pregnancy - Free Printable

Pregnancy is such a miraculous state, yet it isn’t always smooth sailing. My first pregnancy was a dream run. Textbook. A bit of nausea. Tiredness. Sore boobs. I then went on to have a completely intervention free natural delivery at 40+5 weeks. So when I fell pregnant this time I expected a similar experience. It wasn’t to be.

I still physically felt fine. Until I went to my 20 week scan and was diagnosed with placenta praevia. My placenta was actually covering the cervix. This caused me a huge amount of emotional stress as the prospect of bleeding, hospital stays and a possible c-section delivery loomed. But weeks passed, life carried on as normal, and I thought “Hey, maybe I can still make it to the end and have the natural delivery I’m hoping for”. Everything was going tickedy-boo, until I went to bed a week ago and felt myself bleeding.

Frantic phone calls later, I ended up in an ambulance being transferred to the nearest large teaching hospital, 1 hour away.

I ended up being in hospital for just 2 nights thankfully, but as a mother of a 2 year old, that’s a really long time! It was also the first time we had had a night away from each other, and it certainly wasn’t the circumstances I was hoping that milestone would happen in.

A few things became apparent during this whole series of events.

1. I wish I had a bag packed earlier. I did have a moment to pack a bag but in the panic forgot things like toothbrush, slippers, body wash. The little things that help make you feel a bit more human when you’re in hospital.

2. I don’t have all the phone numbers I need in my phone!!!

3. The people you want to answer their phones aren’t always able to. My husband was away and out of phone reception while this was all happening. So I needed to have a team of people lined up ready to look after both me and my daughter.

On coming home Legoman and I decided that I needed to:

  • Pack an emergency bag which may involve also being in hospital for an emergency c-section (hello breast pads)
  • Make a list of all emergency contacts should this happen again. And to share that list with family/friends.

So to make your life a little easier too, instead of just scribbling the phone numbers on a scrap of paper, I have made a free printable for you. Simply print out the list and fill in the blanks. For a few of the people on the list there may be multiple numbers. For example, Legoman has both his work and mobile number. My parents have their home, mobiles and work numbers.

I’m hoping you and I never have to use these numbers, but just in case, it’s always good to be prepared!

Best of luck in your pregnancy! Here’s to chubby bubbies!

Emergency Numbers In Pregnancy - Click to Download

Looking for more free printables? Check out my free meal planning template and my family favourites printables.

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Pina Colada Muffins

Pina Colada Muffins

Ahhhh sweet summer nights, sipping Pina Colada’s on a beach front somewhere wonderful… all just a dream for this heavily pregnant mother of a toddler! Doesn’t mean I can’t bake some super tasty muffins! Because cocktails and muffins totally compare. Excuse me while I go sob in the corner for a moment…. Rightio! Back again! This pregnant mumma is also living in the icy start of winter, where our pipes are already starting to freeze in the mornings and our windscreens need to be scraped of ice before driving anywhere. So sure, why not tropicana on your tastebuds! Liven things up!

These Pina Colada Muffins are a delicious combination of some of my favourite things.

Coconut, lots of coconut.

Pineapple. Mmmmmmmm

Lime. Sweet, sweet (or sour) lime.

Pina Colada Muffins

Plus a few other healthy yummos like chia seeds, yoghurt and banana to make these Pina Colada Muffins totally guilt free. They are both egg free and nut free making them perfect for school lunches and toddler afternoon teas. And with only 2 Tbsp of coconut sugar added you can confidently even give these as a little baby led weaning treat too!

Legoman’s verdict… “They’re sweet. They’re good.”

Possum’s verdict… “Deliiiccccciiiiioooooooooouuuusssss. I want more muffin!”

Pina Colada Muffins

I have really wonderful memories of sipping Pina Colada’s on Tonsai Beach in Thailand, with the freshest of fresh coconut and pineapple in them. Swinging in a hammock. Watching the lightning flash across the ocean. Off I go day dreaming again…

These Pina Colada Muffins are quite a moist mix so when baking make sure to give them a little skewer test to check if they are done. I had to keep putting them back in the first round, I think I was a bit too excited to try them!

Pina Colada Muffins – Makes ~16 mini muffins

225g tin pineapple pieces in natural juice

2 Tbsp chia seeds

1 cup SR flour

1 cup desiccated coconut

1 tsp baking powder

270ml tin coconut cream (I use Ayam brand as it’s 100% pure coconut, not watered down or thickened)

2 bananas, mashed

2 Tbsp coconut sugar

2/3 cup full fat plain yoghurt

2 Tbsp coconut oil melted

Zest of 1 lime

1. Strain off the juice from the pineapple into a medium bowl. Add the chia seeds to the juice and let soak for 15 mintues

2. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C and grease a mini muffin pan.

3. Combine desiccated coconut, SR flour, baking powder, coconut sugar and lime zest in a large mixing bowl.

4. Mash bananas and stir through pineapple pieces.

5. Whisk together coconut cream and the chia seed mixture.

6. Combine chia/coconut mix, pineapple/banana mix, dry mix and yoghurt.

7. Spoon into muffin pan and bake for 20-25 minutes, check with a skewer that they are cooked right through as this is quite a moist mixture.

Pina Colada Muffins

I had to add in this photo of the pineapple pieces. The sunshine through the bowl was making such beautiful patterns. And that photo of the whisk is actually a colour photo, looks black and white. Pretty groovy 🙂 I hope these Pina Colada Muffins add some tropical sunshine to your day! Enjoy!

Pina Colada Muffins

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Easy Chicken Alphabet Soup

Easy Chicken Alphabet Soup

Do you remember having alphabet soup as a kid?? When I saw these alphabet pasta shapes at our local ALDI I just had to buy some! More for me than anyone else. Possum has been really getting into the alphabet lately and can even sing the whole alphabet song (proud beaming mumma over here! hello!). I thought this would be a fun way for her to play, learn and enjoy delicious homemade chicken alphabet soup. Possum makes soup at most meals. This involves putting a bit of everything into her cup of water, stirring it and then drinking it……… delicious……

This Easy Chicken Alphabet Soup is the perfect way to use up leftover roast chicken. A nice bonus when you’re using meal planning is this 2 for 1 kind of cooking! Less fuss, less stress and less cost. Bingo!

And yes I did have just a bit of fun picking out the letters to spell “alphabet” for my nice pic up the top 🙂 You likey? I used a Lego keyring (guess who owns that one!) as my lighting. So fancy! So professional!

Alphabet Noodles

As a little side story, it’s funny how sometimes the universe knows things way before you do. I cooked this soup on Saturday night. I did the grocery shopping during Saturday day, I normally do it Monday. I also strangely had the house pretty darn clean and organised by the time I went to bed that night. Plus Possum hadn’t had any Mummy Milk for 3 days… That night I was rushed to hospital with bleeding. I am 30 weeks pregnant and have placenta praevia. Legoman was out bush and out of phone reception. Not a fun situation.

To cut a long story short, I am now home again after a couple of nights in hospital. Both baby and I are absolutely fine. I was joking that had the hospital had a kitchen, a DSLR and wifi I could’ve happily blogged whilst there! Instead I used up all my data on my phone reading everyone else’s blogs (I found a few new ones here and here)!

Easy Chicken Noodles Soup cooking

Easy Chicken Alphabet Noodle Soup – Serves 4

For the broth:

Leftover Roast Chicken (I had nearly half a chicken left), skin and bones included

3 carrots very roughly chopped

1 onion peeled and quartered

2 bay leaves

10 peppercorns

a pinch of salt

1/2 red capsicum very roughly chopped

5 cups of water

large handful fresh parsley

For the remainder of the soup

1/2 cup of alphabet soup noodles

2 carrots sliced

2 cups broccoli florets

1. Place all ingredients for the broth into a slow cooker. Cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 10-11 hours. Or do as I did and start it on high for a few hours while you go do the grocery shopping then turn in to low until close to dinner time.

2. After cooking the broth, strain it through a pasta strainer. Strip chicken carcass of as much meat as you can. I still had nearly half a chicken on my leftovers so this was quite a meaty soup.

3. Add the strained broth and chicken meat to a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add your sliced carrots. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Then add your alphabet pasta and broccoli. Cook for 5 minutes.

4. Then serve! It’s really that crazy simple!!

If you don’t have a slow cooker you can easily make the broth by sitting all the ingredients in a large saucepan on very low heat on the stove top. You could reduce the cooking time this way too.

I could’ve tried to style this soup, but really it’s such a kiddie classic and nostalgic wonder, I just had to put a picture of Possum’s cute little pink bowl and teaspoon instead. I hope your family enjoys this Easy Chicken Noodle Soup!

Toddler Serve of Easy Chicken Noodle Soup

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Roast Chicken with Garlic, Sage and Thyme

Roast Chicken with Garlic, Sage and Thyme

Everybody loves a good homemade roast chicken! Well maybe the vegans and vegetarians don’t… but everyone else loves a homemade roast chicken! I love the simplicity, ease and minimal cost that comes with such a delicious and soul satisfying meal. I also love that my whole family enjoys sitting down and sharing a lovely roast chicken. It makes an ideal toddler dinner and is wonderful for baby led weaning too.

My Roast Chicken with Garlic, Sage and Thyme was just what the doctor ordered today after a day at work, a toddler who hadn’t slept, plus minimal supplies in the fridge and pantry. Hello trusty garlic and home grown herbs! A few minutes chopping and prepping and you will have a wonderful meal in the oven. You can then spend the next hour that it’s cooking catching your breath, enjoying a hot cup of tea (put Play School on, seriously) or getting some odd jobs done (that cup of tea is looking mighty fine).

Roast Chicken Possum

The wonderful thing with Roast Chicken is that the story doesn’t end at that first meal. Leftovers can be used to make:

  • freezable sandwiches for work and school lunches. Simply put chicken and mayonnaise on a sandwich, wrap in Cling Wrap then freeze. On the day you want one, take it out and let thaw in your bag. By lunch it will be perfect!
  • healthy and delicious homemade chicken stock
  • kid friendly Chicken Noodle Soup

Roast Chicken with Garlic, Sage and Thyme – serves 4

1 1-1.5kg chicken (preferable free range or organic)

3-10 cloves of garlic, peeled (depending on how much you love it!)

5 fresh sage leaves finely chopped

a few sprigs of fresh thyme

salt and pepper

extra virgin olive oil

1 leek (secret ingredient!), sliced and rinsed

3 medium potatoes, washed, cut into wedges

1 medium sweet potato, washed, cut into chunks or wedges

1. Preheat oven to 200°C.

2. Slice your leek and rinse in a colander under running water. This is very important as the many layers of a leek hide a lot of dirt and grit. Place sliced leek in a large roasting pan.

3. Rinse and pat dry the chicken. Place chicken on top of the sliced leek.

4. Place desired number of garlic cloves in the cavity and you can also pierce the flesh and push the bulbs into the chicken itself. I also like to cut one clove in half and rub it over the skin.

5. Place your chopped vegetables around the chicken.

6. Drizzle both chicken and vegetables with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place herbs over the top of the chicken.

7. Place roasting pan in the oven to roast for 25 minutes per 500g of chicken. I had a 1.4kg chicken and roasting for 1h 15 minutes.

8. Now for the hot tip… When you take the chicken out of the oven, place it upside down either in the pan or on a plate to rest, covered in foil. This allows all the lovely juices to run back into the chicken breasts and keep them lovely and moist. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving up.

Serve your delicious Roast Chicken with Garlic, Sage and Thyme with the roasted potatoes, sweet potatoes and some steamed vegetables (Possum loves her carrots and broccoli). Nom nom nom.

roast chicken

***Want something delicious for dessert? Check out my Egg Free Spiced Pear Cake.

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