Hi all! After the emotions of last week, it’s been SO nice to get back to normal. The Bank Holiday weekend was perfectly timed for a lovely break to unwind and take stock.
My aches are still there, but they’re definitely manageable. I’m finding the lower part of my belly is bearing the brunt of it (figures that this would be where most of the stretching would occur!) but it’s also been accompanied by plenty of movement from Squish, so that’s a lovely upside. I did spend a good 20 minutes on Saturday with my phone trained on my bump, trying to get a video of her poking a limb out through my vest top. The fiftieth time was the charm! Totally worth it.
This week I have been indulging in a spot of SHOPPING. And it’s legitimate shopping too (as opposed to spunking my monthly pay on a huge ASOS order) because most of it is a) for the baby and b) stuff that I definitely don’t already have. AND a large proportion of this stuff is very, very cute.
However it is super easy to get carried away. It’s very much like preparing for a wedding, in that you’re suddenly in an alternate universe where you are constantly being told that you really, really do need that hand-embroidered muslin (you don’t) or the babygro that will make your child easier to carry (it won’t) or the toy that will definitely be responsible for their MENSA level IQ developing.
Put it down. Close the browser. Step AWAY from the beautiful but bank breaking item and take a deep, long breath. Remember that you have a lifetime to shower your child with gifts. Now think about what the baby actually NEEDS. Prioritise that.
And then make a small allowance for SOME of the cute, frivolous things, because it is possible to get some lovely little bits without having to remortgage your flat to afford them.
If you want to get all your baby clothes shopping done in one fell swoop, eBay is a godsend. Filter by “bundles” in the baby clothes category, and you’ll find what happens when parents wake up one morning and realise that their home is overflowing with outgrown clothes. I have seen bundles of over 50 different items of clothing for under £50 (that’s less than £1 an item!).
Obviously, check out the seller’s review and scrutinise the photos to make sure the clothes aren’t too worn or bobbly – there’s enough stuff on there that you can afford to be picky. You can find some really good deals, and justify the cute little party dress that will only be worn once before it’s outgrown, or the higher end brands if you like.
Keep an eye out for the high street sales as well, and remember that you need to match seasonal items to however old your baby will be when that season comes around again. Babygros (baby grows? How are you supposed to write that?) are a pretty safe bet to get at any time. I had a field day in Sainsbury’s – they had 25% off everything! – on recommendation from a friend who said that although it’s cheaper, the quality is still very good.
I also took advantage of the Sainsbury’s sale to get myself the comfiest trousers I’ve ever worn! Jersey fabric – check. Drawstring waist – check. Kickass pattern – check. I can see myself living in these for a while!
After all that exhausting shopping, it was time to retreat to my parents’ in Kent for a lazy weekend of eating and sitting (two of my favourite pastimes!). My sister Mel and 7 week old niece Jasmine were also down which gave Charles and I a chance to see firsthand what we are going to be in for in a few months!
I am so impressed with how my sister is handling motherhood. Seriously, she’s a seasoned pro at only a few weeks in! She knows Jasmine intimately already and can figure out exactly what she wants in a very short space of time (which really helps when she starts wailing!). I can only hope that I develop the same expertise as quickly…
It also made it really clear that looking after such a young baby is really firmly based in a routine of sorts. Eat. Burp. Sleep. Poop. Change. Repeat, in any order you prefer. Quite systematic, but I can see where the infamous sleep deprivation comes in, as the cycle of events is very short! And the change in Jasmine’s demeanour was instantaneous as well – she was going from smiling to full-on weeping (heartbreaking!) and then sleeping at the drop of a hat. Phew. I’m quite looking forward to the challenge!
Remind me I said that in 5 months’ time.