Parenting in Progress

I am the proud mother of a beautiful baby boy and the purpose of this blog is to record my experience of motherhood.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Big belly growth in the last couple of days, the bump is getting higher up! This is me in my new maternity clothes ordered from the catalogue, looks like they came just in time.
Sure had some weird dreams last night - dreamed I had a baby boy, I brought him home and he was so clever that he already knew how to blow his nose when I held a hanky to it, and he was toilet trained (wishful thinking?!) - then he turned into a puppy Lenny, hmmm too many dogs in this house! Reminds me of a dream I had when my sister-in-law was pregnant that she gave birth to a litter of puppies and I saw them all lined up in a row in the bath!
Reminds me of a Sylvia Plath poem Poem for a Birthday, here's a section of it:

Dark House

This is a dark house , very big.
I made it myself,
Cell by Cell from a quiet corner,
Chewing at the grey paper,
Oozing the glue drops,
Whistling, wiggling my ears,
Thinking of something else.

It has so many cellars,
such eelish delvings!
I am round as an owl,
I see by my own light.
Any day I may litter puppies
Or mother a horse. My belly moves.
I must make more maps.

These marrowy tunnels!
Moley-handed, I eat my way.
All-mouth licks up the bushes
And the pots of meat.
He lives in an old well,
A stony hole. He's to blame.
He's a fat sort.

Pebble smells, turnipy chambers.
Small nostrils are breathing.
Little humble loves!
Footlings, boneless as noses,
It is warm and tolerable
In the bowel of the root.
Here's a cuddly mother.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Yesterday we finished painting what I call our 'Sherlock Holmes' hall - the colours remind me of a kind of Sherlock decor. I visited the Shelock Holmes museum at 221b Baker Street, London a couple of years back - here's a pic of the front of the museum .
Couldn't really find a 'before' picture of our hall, this is the closest I could get with lenny as a pup. Our walls were white and we had a huge celtic wall hanging that we brought back from the Isle of Iona.
After much painstaking effort this is our hall now, see what I mean about the Sherlock colours - all we need now is a new carpet.

I'm just mad on apples (golden delicious) and apple juice at the moment, and this baby is beating up my insides constantly - he/she sure does let me know if I'm lying in an uncomfortable position for him/her! And the heartburn is back with a vengence, must remember to buy more Gaviscon.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Summer has returned to Scotland! Studied out in the garden and got a little burnt, we bought a smoker barbecue last week - hopefully we'll get to try it out tonight. Went swimming last night, the pool was a little crowded with German exchange students which was a little annoying. Still it was a great way to chill out, been feeling a little stressed the last couple of days (pregnancy hormones!). On a positive note the pregnancy hormones have been great for my hair - never been in better condition, my skin and my sense of smell has quadrupled - I swear I can smell a curry a mile off!
Husband bought a book on whittling, wood carving using twigs and branches - says he going to learn to carve me little bears! We were inspired by our visit a couple of weeks ago to a local chainsaw carver, and I just loved the bear. Here's a Red Indian carving - some amount of patience and skill needed to create this, I don't even have the patience to learn to knit!

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Went swimming with my niece last night, first time I've been swimming since Turkey 3 years ago. Okay so our local pool is hardly the Mediterranean but I forgot how much I love swimming. It was great being able to glide through the water, lie on my back totally relaxed and float away or plunge under the surface and listen to the sound of the water gurgling all around me. Funnily enough I found it difficult to swim far under the water, I kept bobbing back up to the surface like a cork - must be all the extra oxygen in my belly. My bones are suffering today but it sure was worth it, I intend to go back regularly. It was great being there at night, we had the whole pool to ourselves, and amazingly my swimming costume still fits - it just managed to stretch over the bump, and of course I wore a t-shirt on top. It is great getting some exercise especially when it isn't a chore.

Yesterday I relaxed in true pregnancy style with a good book and a tub of double chocolate fudge ice-cream. The book is one of my favorites, The Paradise War by Stephen Lawhead - it's one of three in a trilogy about 2 Oxford students who get mixed up in an Otherworld which is an ancient Celtic world - the author is a Christian so it's kind of a Christian allegory of good against evil, they are a great read and there are even 3 cd's of Celtic music linked to the 3 books.

In February this year my husband and I went for a drive to some ancient Celtic sites about two hours journey from where we live. It's a favorite place of ours, we are both interested and facinated by Celtic history and mythology. Dunadd is an ancient hill fort, it was the seat of the kings of Dálriada. It's known for its unique stone carvings including a footprint and basin thought to have formed part of Dálriada's coronation ritual. Though it is an assumption only, legend says that Dunadd was the first location of the Stone of Scone in Scotland.
Knights Templar graveslabs can be found in a village near to Dunadd - Kilmartin.
In the Kilmartin valley at Achnabreck is one of the largest areas of cup-and-ring markings in Britain carved into the surface of two expanses of rock.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Hard to believe but that's me exactly halfway through my pregnancy - 18 weeks today (20 wks from lmp).
Baby is now practicing breathing and swallowing on a regular basis. He/she may startle in reaction to loud sounds. Amazingly, baby can actually hear noises outside of the womb (must be getting used to our barking dogs!). Familiar voices, music, and sounds that baby becomes accustomed to during his/her development stages often are calming after birth. The uterus has likely reached my bellybutton and baby is about 6.46 inches (16.4cm) and weighs around 10.58 ounces (300g).

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Just been informed that the dream I had the other night about watching 'Magnum' starred Tom Selleck not Burt Reynolds. Just googled pics of both and don't they look alike?! I loved that programme as a kid, a classic '80's tv show. Click here for the theme tune, talk about nostalgia!

Hmm...thinking of investing in a pregnancy body pillow - just not sleeping well at night, at the moment every position I lie in is uncomfortable. The experts recommend sleeping on the left side as the baby isn't resting on any vital organs or veins, last night I fell asleep on my right side and woke up this morning feeling like someone had been punching my insides all night. And my legs constantly ache, especially at night, they feel totally tensed up as if they are about to cramp but thankfully there hasn't been a repeat of last week's nasty cramp experience.

Last night, between showers, I managed to take the dogs out for a nice stroll around the Bishop's Glen, just up the back of Dunoon. Normally the Glen is quite busy with dog walkers etc but I had the place all to myself last night, it was just perfect and very peaceful. The dogs went for a wee swim in the reservoir and nearly gave me a heart attack, I through a stick in the water for Lenny to fetch and it sank (it was a bit charred, must have been used in someone's fire). Lenny kept swimming further out looking for it and I had an awful moment of panic that he would get tangled in the long underwater reeds and that I might have to jump in and rescue him. What an awful dilemma - watch my dog drown or risk me and the baby trying to save him. Anyway thankfully after a lot of shouting he turned back and eventually crawled safely onto the beach. Here's a pic of Lenny at the West Bay last week after fetching a stick, he just loves swimming.

Right now I'm sipping a mug of hot water and lemon, I managed to get a good mid-morning nap after last night's uncomfortable sleep but I woke up with a headache, however I've discovered lemon to be a great natural cure for headaches and it's very refreshing.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

So much for sun, it looks like the middle of winter out there! I guess it's about time I got dressed though this is really stay-in-bed-all-day weather.

Heh here's a laugh...according to
this my profile blog picture resembles:

Rachael Leigh Cook 63%
Martina McBride 63%
Kate Beckinsale 61%
Jochen Rindt 60%
Joe Montana 58%
Geena Davis 57%
Yoon-jin Kim 57%
Cate Blanchett 56%
Ashlee Simpson 54%
Kareena Kapoor 54%

hmm...I don't think so somehow!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Horray the dreaded exam is over and I can't complain - all the questions I wanted came up so I'm happy, happy, happy and ready to spend the next few days, at least, doing nothing! We all went to the pub afterwards and I celebrated with 2 cans of irn-bru, it's a good feeling to have that out the way.
Here's some pretty pics of Glasgow uni and its gothic tower. All that's left is a dissertation to write and 3 months to do it so I'm hoping the sun will come back to Dunoon so I can laze about in the garden the next couple of days. Maybe now I should start planning all that needs to be organised for the baby's arrival, and go along to the aquanatal sessions at the swimming pool etc.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Well daddy-to-be bought his first teddy for baby - a beautiful rhino! He survived the safari and took lots of good photos.
I love this one of the otters -I've loved otters ever since reading Gavin Maxwell's 'Ring of Bright Water' when I was a kid. Keep meaning to visit Sandaig (called Camusfearna in the book) where he lived with the otters. I also like this brown bear though they are rather scary creatures.
Well the exam's tomorrow and my nails are well and truly bitten. Husband decided last night that his banjo cd would be good bedtime music and after half an hour my heartbeat was pretty much racing to keep up with the string plucking, needless to say I didn't get to sleep very well - it was after 3.30 am that I finally dropped off and had a weird dream about watching an old tv series on telly called 'Magnum' with Burt Reynolds.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Just finished setting out husband's pack-lunch, he's off to the safari park with the Sunday school. I was supposed to be going but then realised it was too close to my exam so I have to be a dull Jack and stay home and study which is a shame because I haven't been to a safari park since I was a kid.
I don't like zoos, I think they're cruel and I hate to see the animals pacing in small cages but safari parks (reputable ones) are great, it feels like the animals are sight-seeing us caged in our cars rather than the other way about.
The place they are going to is where I used to go to on Sunday school trips when I was growing up in Glasgow. I remember one particular time when I was about 7 years old my mum made me chicken sandwiches for my pack-lunch and at the eating area at the park there was a bunch of loose chickens so I left some of them a bit of my sandwich - it wasn't until afterwards that I horrifyingly realised that I'd just turned them into cannibals! Though worryingly they seemed to enjoy it!
Anyway I think it will be a challenge being stuck in the middle of a safari park in a mini-bus full of kids - keeping the animals out, keeping the kids in - I think husband will be tired when he gets home!


Friday, June 16, 2006

Waves and Bubbles

Well for the last week or so I've been experiencing bubbles in my tummy, I thought it was just gas but now I'm thinking it's the baby. It's always in the same place - very high up on the right side, I thought it was too high to be the baby but this afternoon it's been non-stop and it feels quite strange, I'm guessing it can't be anything else! It's kind of like a mix between bubbles and a funny kind of internal numbness with an odd wave going over that part of my belly - strange huh?!

Feels like the weeks are flying in, that's me 17 weeks pregnant (19 from lmp).
The baby apparently has the same awake and sleep patterns of a newborn. He/she has a favorite position for sleep and recognizable active and rest periods.
Went out to lunch with my mum and had the best BLT I've ever eaten! Being pregnant has been good for my health, I've never eaten so much fruit and vegetables in my life. So far today I've had a tomatoe, lettice and tomatoe salad, a plum, a peach and a bowl full of cherries and it's not even 2pm! And I just love drinking water with lemon, hot or cold depending on the weather.
Made myself a compilation cd of some of my favorite songs so this morning I woke up to a mix of The Eagles, Tracy Chapman, Simon and Garfunkel, Del Amitri, Crowded House and Texas, how good is that?! - This baby is going to like music!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

I've heard that being pregnant can on occasion change the colour of your hair, well last night I plucked a single black hair from my head, scary eh?!
My calf is still sore after the leg cramp the other night, I'm so paranoid now about not pointing my toes in case it brings on another attack.
Another dull day of study, I'll be glad when this exam on Monday is over.
Well it turns out the common belief that eggs are bad for you because they are high in cholesterol is not true after all because "most of the fat in egg is unsaturated fat" and according to Delia the real cholesterol culprits are saturated fats. Delia also says that "even if you are on a low-fat diet, eating up to seven eggs a week is okay".
This is good news because I've become partial to having a boiled egg for breakfast every morning, and there are so many nutrients in the yolk which is good for baby!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


"Leg cramps are a famous misery of pregnancy. They range anywhere from a fleeting musclular pulling all the way to hopping around in agony."

Well last night I was definately the latter. Went to bed early after a very long day of philosophy seminars in Glasgow and woke up about an hour later yelling in pain. The midwives never warned me about this, my leg is still sore this morning and the bad news is that after some google-ing it seems that leg cramps are common occurances all throughout 2nd and 3rd trimenster...ugh. Even more bad news is that yesterday I did everything suggested to avoid leg cramps - I ate a banana, dranks loads of water, did a lot of walking, wore support tights.
Looking on the bright side the sun's back out and it looks like I'll be able to eat breakfast outside.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Just back from the hospital - got to hear baby's heartbeat which was thumping away at about twice the rate of mine, and the little mite sure was swimming about in there!! It's a relief to know that everything is as it should be.

Yesterday was a special day, five people got baptised at my local church (they don't call it a Baptist church for nothing!) and a good friend of mine was one of them. It was lovely to watch - the youngest was 17 years old and the oldest, believe it of not, was 92 years old. It was especially amazing to watch the 92 year old woman getting baptised, she also gave her testimony which was lovely - here she is stepping into the baptismal tank, all the kids are crowded round on the floor to get a good view.
Yesterday was another beautiful day, after the baptisms we went out with a few friends for lunch. On the way back we stopped to have a look at some wooden chainsaw carvings done by one of the locals - I just love this bear - I think it would look great in my garden!

Saturday, June 10, 2006

It's a hard life!

Started off the day sitting out in the sun with my breakfast of boiled egg and toast. Here's me and 4 month bump just after brekkie. The big dog got shaved to make the heat a little more bearable and then we took them down to the shore for a swim. This afternoon I managed to combine study with some serious sunbathing, the first time my bare legs have seen fresh air since Greece 3 years ago! Mother-in-law came round in the late afternoon and we sat out for a few hours more, she says 'hi' to auntie Betty and she likes our table set! Now it's bath-time and I've got some candles to burn.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Last night we bought a table and chairs set for our backgarden - it is just lovely today to be able to sit out in our garden in the sun. We found a really nice sturdy set that doesn't wobble all over the place with a decent size glass table, I love it - I can now sit outside and study which makes it much less of a chore! Husband came home for lunch and was happy to be eating his lunch outside and enjoy some of this great weather.

That's me now 4 months pregnant!
Welcome to week 16 (18 weeks from lmp), and I have to say I've felt much better over the last week - more like my *normal* self, so it does get better after all! I still have aversions to certain foods but as long as I don't think about them I'm fine. Also I still get tired very easily, but not quite as much as in the first 3 months.
You're now about the size of a small can of soup, your vocal chords are formed and you may go through the motions of crying but without air you don't make a sound (peace and quiet for now eh!). Here's a baby at 16 weeks sucking his/her thumb.
Everyone thinks it's a girl, my neighbour says that because I've put a lot of weight on my belly rather than being spread all over is a sign it's a girl! I guess we'll find out next month.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

What a beautiful day. Had a lovely lunch out (macaroni cheese and chips...Mmmm)with my dad and step-mum and then we went for a walk around the local botanical gardens. The gardens are lovely at this time of year, here's a picture of its famous Giant Redwood avenue - boy they trees are hard to fit into a photo. There are lots of beautiful trees and flowers and a lovely wee pond with a fountain.
Had a barbecue last night out by loch Eck, the dogs just loved being able to run about in and out of the water - being a fresh-water loch - and of course begging for sausages! Here's Lenny after snuffling around the sand for sausages. I was glad when we got the barbecue started because the midges were having me for dinner but the smoke soon cleared them off!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Seven things to do before I die:

visit Israel
visit Base Camp, Everest
walk part of the Great Wall of China
learn Hebrew
write good poetry
emigrate to Canada
spend a year travelling the world in a caravan

Seven things I cannot do:

eat mushrooms
vote tory
play table-tennis
climb a tree

Seven things that attract me to my husband:

his relationship with God
his beautiful blue eyes
his lateral thinking
his school-boy humour (well sometimes!)
his absolute devotion and loyalty
his mad hobbies
his ambition

Seven books I love:

Collected poems by Sylvia Plath
The complete poems of Anna Ahkmatova
If this is a Man by Primo Levi
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
The Paradise War Trilogy by Stephen Lawhead
On foot to the Golden Horn by Jason Goodwin

Seven movies I'd watch over and over again:

Armour of God (series of films with Jackie Chan)
James Bond (preferably with Roger Moore)
The Bodyguard
The Shining
Kate and Leopold

Seven people I'd like to tag:

Stalk like an Apache
Pilgrims, Poets & Dreamers
my jellybean
don't know anyone else...

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

At the moment I'm just mad on Curly-wurly's "the bendiest stretchiest chocolate bar in the world" - I won't tell you how many I've eaten but just been to the shops to stock up on supplies so I'm happy! Hope this baby arrives before all my teeth fall out! Belly's been aching a wee bit today, a reminder to self - don't make any sharp movements. Study, study, study - today I'm studying scepticism (how do you know you're not just a brain in a jar whose experiences are chemically induced by an evil scientist, exciting stuff eh?!).
It's been a beautiful day yet again, probably thanks to global warming. Earlier this year my husband came home with a green bushy plant made homeless by my mother-in-law so I stuck it in our plantless garden in a conveniently ready-made hole dug by the dogs and lacking in green-fingerness I assumed that the thing had died but behold one day last week it sprouted these lovely pinky-red flowers!

Monday, June 05, 2006

They say it's a dog's life and today it sure feels like that. It's a beautiful day, I'm stuck inside studying for an exam and here are the dogs, snoring away as if they never slept all night. We are painting the door surrounds in our hall a mossy green colour, needless to say both dogs have nice green highlights down one side of their coats!
People will think we are Celtic supporters, our bathroom is also green and white. It's a bit odd, my husband' s great great grand-someone or other was a manager of Celtic, and my mum's cousin, Andy Gray, played for Rangers - so we kind of have a foot in each side. Not that either of us watch much football, I do like to watch the world cup though...and Scotland's not even in it this year. Here's a picture of ma mum's cousin in his early footballing days, he's mostly now known for sports commentating on Sky tv.
Ah well best stop waffling and get back to the slogging - you can tell I'm skiving when I write about football!!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

The chicken looks great doesn't it?! Today we had a barbecue in our back garden, been married 10 years and this is the first time we've had a home barbecue! Just a £3.99 barbecue set from the supermarket but it did the job great - we had chicken, kebabs, sausages, salad, barbecued peppers which are wonderful and of course marshmallows. My mother-in-law popped over and joined us which made it extra nice. The weather has been great the last couple of days, we took the dogs to the beach and I even went for a wee paddle. Yesterday I bought my first proper maternity trousers - a pair of jeans, it was great to be wearing jeans again and wearing something comfortable that my belly isn't bursting out of.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Today is week 15 (17 weeks from LMP - last menstrual period) and you're about the size of a small pomegranate! You may now be sucking your thumb and grabbing the umbilical cord. Fingernails are beginning to grow. Part of your skeleton hardens and taste buds form on the tongue. You will hear your first sounds, listening to my heartbeat, digestion, and voice for the rest of the pregnancy.

Thursday, June 01, 2006


To whom do I talk, an unborn thou,
sleeping in a bone creel.

Look what awaits you:
stars, milkbottles, frost
on a broken outhouse roof.

let's close the door,
and rearrange
the dark red curtain.

Can you tell the days are opening,
admit a touch more light,
just a touch more?

Kathleen Jamie

not for the faint-hearted

It's been a funny morning, I felt fine when I got up - had a great night's sleep, none of the stretching uterus aches that have been plaguing me the last couple of nights. Standing in front of the mirror brushing my hair and I came over all light-headed, thought I was going to faint so I went back to bed for 20 mins. Felt fine so I got up and without even feeling sick,(those with a weak disposition turn away now) started retching and then spewed my guts up - the bizarre thing was that when I was sick it tasted of wotsits which I've not eaten for ages! Looks like I'm going to take it easy today, wonder what's upset my little bump?!

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