Friday, 31 July 2015

The Body Shop Spa Of The World Collection

If you're a long time reader then you will already know my huge love for the brand The Body Shop. I've spent many a pay day with a wishlist as long as my arm and over the years I've grown to know the products inside out, that was until recently. Since becoming pregnant, my skin type has changed drastically and I can't use the same products that I used to. It's safe to say that my knowledge of the products has declined greatly.

When The Body Shop asked me to join their sampling programme, I jumped at the chance. So far I've tried outstanding products from their new ranges and this one, Spa Of The World Collection didn't disappoint either. The Body Shop have really upped their game in terms of packaging and the product itself.

Japanese Camellia Cream (*)

This stuff is heavenly, I've been using the 3 products combined as a pamper routine in the bath since they seem to be safe for me to use in my current pregnant state. It has a velvet-like consistency and although a body cream rather than lotion, it is in between a lotion and body butter so is one to pop on at night before bed. The scent lingers for a good 12+ hours after applying and trust me, it's a good one!

Dead Sea Salt Scrub (*)

This is my favourite product from the trio of products. I absolutely love a good salt scrub and this one is nothing like the regular Body Shop scrubs. It's in my top 3 of the best I've tried, the others being Champneys Distant Shores Body Scrub and Calcot Manor The Lazy Evening Gentle Salt Scrub. The scent lingers just like the Japanese Camellia Cream, which I love! It gets rid of dead skin cells without being too abrasive on my sensitive skin. I think this is one that I'll re-purchase over and over, although I think this will last me a good 6-9 months!

Egyptian Milk & Honey Bath (*)

I was so intrigued by this product. First of all the packaging is another joy about the collection. Packaged in a drawstring brown bag, the product is contained within plastic packaging and is a powder formula. It comes with a cute little scoop, which is for you to dispense directly into your bath. Like the other products it smells lovely, but this one was the product I was most disappointed by. I've tried it several times now and the instructions state to put around 3 scoops into warm, running water. Beware, this doesn't produce bubbles if that's your thing! As relaxing as it is to put into the bath, I just didn't really get any joy from using it. I wouldn't buy this once I've ran out of it but for the novelty factor I'd probably end up buying as a gift for Christmas maybe.

The Spa Of The World collection is out in August, but prices are still to be confirmed. Keep an eye out on their website for more details once it's launched!

Are you interested in buying any of this collection? Which are your favourite Body Shop products?

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Tuesday, 28 July 2015

36 Weeks Update

All the way throughout my pregnancy, people love to give advice and their stories (horrors and all!), but the main thing I was told and remember is how baby's movements really slow down towards the end. Thankfully, I've been incredibly lucky that I've never once had to count baby girl's movements, she is beyond active and never stops moving! Hopefully, she will love sleep once she's in the outside world..!

The main thing that she loves to do in the past few weeks is stick her feet out so far of my tummy, you can really see a pronounced foot. It scares me a little, but my husband loves seeing it and grabbing her little heels!

Excuse the hugely unflattering pic, taken at 36 weeks | How gorgeous is this Zara Mini Trench Coat?! I need a matching one for me and my girl.. | The beautiful fabric print for our initial letter..eek not long until everyone can see it!
How far along? 37 weeks.
Total weight gain: 
Maternity clothes? No new ones.
Stretch marks? No update, still plenty unfortunately.
Sleep: Very disturbed. I wake up a lot more now to go to the toilet but struggle to fall back asleep, in particular when daylight is fast approaching. Thankfully, that's where naps come in very handy!
Best moment this week: Being eternally grateful of her movements reassuring an anxious Mummy that she's ok in there at all times!
Miss anything? Getting out of bed without great difficulty and sound effects, oh and general mobility.
Food cravings: Still loving plenty of ice with every single drink and lemonade. A new favourite this week was also Dandelion and Burdock. So naughty, but good!

Okay so baby girl's Jelly Cat collection has grown significantly's a bit out of hand. Hubby bought the penguin on the far left, I love it! Second in, the white bunny, is from Next.
Anything making you queasy or sick? Not this week.
Gender: Girl!
Labour signs: Braxton Hicks are still very regular and intense like the past sort of 8-10 weeks, so particular pattern though. I've also had a bit of back pain creeping in so hoping this is a sign. 

There was a moment this week where I set off driving with my husband, but as soon as I set off, this incredible pain hit me in my lower right-hand side of my stomach. It was so intense that I had to stop the car immediately, but I couldn't even move to swap into the passenger seat. I've had this for 3 days in a row now in the same position once a day, which doesn't stop until I get into the bath usually or rest curled up for around an hour. The midwife couldn't reassure me as to what it was so I'm waiting for more signs..

Symptoms: Tons of heartburn, pelvic pain galore from movement and walking, hormonal mood swings and shortness of breath constantly. Just a few to say the least, every single symptom is heightened now by x100 times and things have become real difficult. 
Belly button in or out? Out.
Happy or moody most of the time: Very up and down, the hormones have finally kicked in. Sometimes I feel a little crazy!
Looking forward to: Meeting our princess of course.

So it's been a fairly eventful one with pains and twinges here and there but nothing consistent enough. I'm now full term today (37 weeks) so I'm quite happy for her to come anytime, more so because I've definitely ran out of room!

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Thursday, 23 July 2015

Bath and Body Works Pocketbac Hand Gel Review

Bath and Body Works Pocketbac Hand Gel
I was organising my photos a few days ago and found this one and realised that I haven't actually done a review of the famous Bath and Body Works Pocketbac Hand Gel's!

Over the years I've re-purchased several of these. Despite never visiting America, I manage to source them fairly easily in the UK and in case you didn't know where to find them, you soon will! I've tried a variety of scents and don't have a bad thing to say about any of them actually; they don't leave your hands sticky and smell good, what's not to love?

In the UK you can source them on eBay, sometimes they are few and far between but if you really search you can find them for around £2.50 with free postage included. Although they're only 29ml, I think they're well worth the money compared to your boring hand gels in Boots and Superdrug.

Within weeks, I will soon become a Mum and I'm sure this is when the hand gels will come into the most use! They're tiny so pop into your handbag/changing bag really easily. It's safe to say that I'm officially obsessed, who's with me..?

Have you tried Bath and Body Works Pocketbac Hand Gel's? Which are your favourite scents?

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Tuesday, 21 July 2015

34 & 35 Weeks Update

Another fortnight has rolled by and although I meant to keep you updated weekly from now, I've just been too busy to write a blog post!

Today marks my 36 weeks of pregnancy which is scary. Looking back on even 30 weeks seems so long ago, yet it really wasn't. I've noticed a huge difference in my bump in many ways over the last few weeks, obviously the size, but also my bump has dropped dramatically over the past even 2 days I'd say!

Nursery is very nearly finished now, just waiting on some 3d fabric lettering on with her initial and some other bits | How cute are these little shoes! | Before my bump dropped later in my 35th week, still so high though here!
I had my 36 week midwife check this morning which went well, she doesn't want to see me again until after my due date; certainly makes it feel more real.

How far along? 36 weeks exactly.
Total weight gain: 16lbs. It doesn't sound a lot but I'm only 5 ft 1 so I don't have much room to store it haha.
Maternity clothes? No new ones. Rapidly running out of any clothes at all that fit though!
Stretch marks? Too many :(
Sleep: Badly. I keep waking up more for no real reason, but it takes me forever to drift back off. Once I do though I can sleep in until like 10am, which shows how shattered I must be!
Best moment this week: Knowing baby girl is still tucked up fine and moving ever so much as always. I've never had to worry about her movements which I feel so lucky about.
Miss anything? Bending down to pick things up and generally reaching the table; causes me to have more food on my clothes than in my mouth!

All handmade by Grandma, how lovely. Top right is a gorgeous Liberty print, left is a reversible fabric and will be perfect for winter as it's quite thick. Bottom right is a lovely mix of colours and quite thin for the remainder of the warmer weather!
Food cravings: Not quite food but still very much craving ice cubes all the time and lemonade.
Anything making you queasy or sick? Cheese! I can't stand the smell right now, especially when I found an expired pack a few days ago!
Gender: Girl!
Labour signs: Braxton Hicks all day long and she's now dropped which means tons of lightening crotch. No fun but come on baby!

Like most sales that I can't resist, my 1st years was no exception. Although I can't yet show you what's in it as it includes her name, let's just say I love it!! | If you're part of the Boots Parenting Club then check theri app for offers, I got another Mam bottle and soother set and this NutriMum gift pack all for free!
Symptoms: General waddling, feeling like a whale..getting to the impatient stage where I'm just so ready for her to come now.
Belly button in or out? Very much out. I hope it goes back in fairly quickly!
Happy or moody most of the time: I've noticed I'm a lot more short tempered now and started to finally reach the emotional stage that everyone talks about! Sometimes I have that thing where I really want to cry but nothing comes out, maybe I'm saving it up for the birth!
Looking forward to: Meeting her, we're both so excited now but equally as nervous/terrified. Not long to wait eek!

So that's all for my 34 and 35 weeks pregnancy update. I will be sure to keep updating in my last few weeks of pregnancy before I become a Mummy!

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Saturday, 11 July 2015

What's In My Hospital Bag

Cath Kidston Kingswood Rose Foldaway Overnight Bag - Currently £26 in the sale here!
Following on from part 1 of my hospital bag journey (you can see what's in baby girl's hospital bag here), today I've got what's in my bag. It's far from glamourous, so if you're squeemish then feel free to click off this one!

First up inside my bag is my toiletries bag. Now I'm well aware that the likelihood of me using all of these things are slim, but I'd like to be prepared just in case!

I got the ice cream toiletries bag from Primark. It's so cute and huge. It's surprising how much you can fit into this, it's perfect for my hospital bag.

Some things I forgot to photograph or it reminded me to put them in there so have since been added. Inside my toiletries bag are some of my essentials (razor and travel sized cotton pads also not pictured). If you can think of anything else, please do let me know in the comments! It would be greatly appreciated.

Most importantly, snacks. I've actually put snacks inside a separate plastic bag inside so that my husband can just pass me as and when. I got the Nutrimum bars from a recent Mothercare Expectant Parents Event so these will be much loved I'm sure!

A new nightie. Now I'm well aware people tell you to use old things throughout labour, and I'm sure I will too afterwards. But the last thing I want is to feel horrible and be wearing old huge clothes that don't fit properly. This is from Matalan and buttons down so that I can breastfeed. I also need to add a top/bathing top for the birthing pool too!

Fluffy socks, also from Matalan for keeping me comfortable and warm feet at all times. There's nothing worse than cold feet!

Straws, I use straws with every drink (except hot drinks of course - but they're rare!). Easy to sip throughout labour and means I don't spill anything on myself.

The most unglamorous section. Cooling mist was highly listed on most labour bag checklists. With the weather we've been having, it could either feel like Winter when I go into labour, or the peak of Summer. Either way, I picked up this cheap cooling mist from one of the pound shops.

My Travalo*. This thing is well loved and I've got 3 of them now! In this particular one is my one of my favourites, Vera Wang Princess. It's compact, means I don't have to lug a huge bottle with me and can fit more things in my bag. Not to mention, make me feel more human and smell nice afterwards!

The essentials - toothbrushes for myself and my husband, maternity towels x2, briefs and breast pads. I've also got lots of old briefs just in case disposable ones don't work out for me.

I've also got a maternity dress to go home in that should cover both options for delivery.

Even more essential, a spare phone charger! I have a "last minute items to pack" note on my phone that I will be using/passing to my husband to sort out. This includes both of our phone chargers, camera, hospital notes and my ipad.

I think that's everything but just in case there's anything you think I've missed, please feel free to let me know in the comments section!

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Tuesday, 7 July 2015

32 & 33 Weeks Update

This fortnight was an eventful one. Thursday saw me in 1 GP surgery and 2 different hospitals. To cut the long story short, I was prescribed some drugs for my hayfever which was really getting annoying, it turns out I suffered an allergic reaction to one of them. My face swelled up and a rash formed, I became very itchy all over and my lips went 3x the size as normal. I was really fed up after being there for hours with no resolution, I just wanted to check our baby wasn't affected but thankfully everything is ok!
The White Company Baby Dressing Gown | 33 Week Bumpdate | Baby girl's nursery coming along!
How far along? 34 Weeks.
Total weight gain: 14lbs - I finally hit the stone mark. Eeek! The combination of my huge boob increase and belly so not too bad considering I'm 34 weeks.
Maternity clothes? No maternity ones, however, I did purchase a couple of Boohoo maxi dresses to keep me going.
Stretch marks? Lots & lots!
Sleep: Extremely disturbed. Due to the heat, general bump being heavy, mixed with Pelvic Girdle Pain doesn't make for well-rested sleep. Third trimester fun and games!
Best moment this week: We attended our first antenatal class and ended up looking around a Community Hospital which wasn't on the agenda. It's thrown us off our original decision so we have more to think about now!
Miss anything? Not having hayfever and not sweating constantly! Usually I love Summer honest, but it really hasn't been comfortable for a few weeks now.
Jelly Cat obsession | Beautiful gift from our friend, her first Disney item! 
Food cravings: Ice - lots of it! Lots of fruit juice too.
Anything making you queasy or sick? Nope.
Gender: Girl!
Labour signs: Still absolutely tons of Braxton Hicks contractions, it seems my belly is constantly solid now they're that frequent.
Symptoms: Swelling began at week 32 and it is really noticeable now. My fat fingers and feet are unrecognisable. It's really uncomfortable to walk on them now. I noticed leaky nipples at one point this week too, but nothing since so will be keeping an eye on them!
Belly button in or out? Out.
Happy or moody most of the time: Due to the weather I have been pretty irritable but generally very happy and excited!
Looking forward to: Her arrival, we're all set and just resting as much as possible before she comes.

Free samples - they were so generous! Thanks, Mothercare! | My Baby's Journal - RRP £14.99
I had my 33 week midwife appointment too which re-confirmed that baby is still head down, my bloods were also taken again and my blood pressure is fine. A student midwife headed the appointment this time and got my bump as 34 weeks, so she's now measuring a tad ahead which they didn't seem worried about.

We also went to the Mothercare Expectant Parent Event a couple of weeks ago which I highly recommend to all expectant parents! The night was a mix of talks, individual support around the store and samples of various products. It was great to be around other expectant parents. On the night we also received a discount in store so we made full use of it by purchasing the last of the baby bits that we needed.

I couldn't resist this beautiful My Baby's Journal. It's a hardback, which I love anyway, but the beautiful sections for before your baby's arrival and major milestones once they're here are adorable. We've already wrote in some key points like baby name ideas (girl and boy) and how we've felt along the way. It's a lovely idea for her 18th birthday.

Sorry for the long rambly post! I've had lots to update you on but been so busy that I couldn't break the post up. I hope you're all doing well. I'll be back soon with another update, until then follow me on Instagram (@Paulab90) for regular updates.

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