Tag Archives: shopping

Guest Post: Things to do Before Baby Arrives

I read this article citing a few things that the author (a mom-to-be) wanted to do before the baby came and convinced a dear friend to write her own list. So with no further ado, please welcome Simple Girl blogging over at (Simple Girl Writes).

Three months ago I walked into the hospital and about 12 hours later was announced as a mother to a precious little girl. Yes, I said I was ‘announced as the mother’ as I only really felt like her mother two months later (but that’s a story for another day…). A friend asked me to compile a list of the things new mums should do before their bundle of joy arrives as you will most likely spend the first six/seven weeks in a haze where you won’t even remember your own name! Be warned, this is not the typical list outlining the very practical things to do (book the hospital bed, go to antenatal classes, take your vitamins etc.) – this list is for the mama that is worried about how much life will change post-baby. And trust me, life will change!

  1. Buy that dress that shows off your new curves and go dancing (or shuffle depending on how swollen the legs are)

I was lucky enough to have a fairly small bump for most of my pregnancy and up to 30 weeks pregnant, I could get away with saying I’ve just gained “a bit of weight” around the tummy. So imagine my horror when I had to go shopping for a dress to go to a wedding with a massive bump at 31 weeks.

Let me tell you, there’s nothing that makes you realise that you are pregnant (yes forget the previous 30 weeks of pregnancy symptoms!) like going shopping for a dress in a mall. Apart from the pity stares you get whenever you walk into a MANGO or ZARA and lovingly touch a dress that you used to fit into a couple of weeks ago. The real horror comes when you are shown the ‘maternity wear’ – long, flowy, pitiful looking dresses that are supposedly supposed to make you feel good about being a baby mama. I took one look at those dresses and almost burst into tears (let’s blame the hormones!).

To cut a long story short, I ended up finding something to wear in a store catering for the ‘plus-size’ lady Ya…I will reserve my comments but the dress was beautiful and I felt good enough in it to go out the next day and dance away.

Trust me, you need to do this – you will forget about the pitiful stares, swollen ankles, achy back and the closet full of clothes you can no longer wear. Most importantly, you will look back at the photos from the day and said dress with a massive grin.

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  1. Take photos of the growing bump!

I didn’t manage to get the professional maternity photo shoot (even though a good friend had offered to do it for me) but I did force the husband to take a lot of photos.  I won’t lie, I struggled with the body changes associated with pregnancy. Unlike other women, I didn’t marvel at the growing bump or liked my bump that much 😦 but take the pictures anyway! It’s worth remembering where the bundle was home for months and even funnier to look at post-baby to remind yourself how big you really were!

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  1. Go on a fun holiday with your closest girlfriends

This one I strongly recommend you do.

I am the first one to have a baby amongst my friends (the last one to get married though – judgment galore!) and they were more excited than I was about having a preggy belly in the circle. So when the chance came to have a last hooray as friends before life dramatically changed – we went on holiday to probably the most random place I’ve been to (Cinsta in the Eastern Cape). It literally was one of the best weekends I’ve had in a while. We stayed at a backpackers, ate way too much, overindulged on chocolate and biscuits (you know, all in the name of helping the pregnant lady with her cravings), went to a beautiful spa for overly-priced pedis and massages and just generally had a blast.

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  1. Babymoon!

Similar to the girlfriend hooray above, I strongly recommend going on a babymoon. The time to enjoy ‘the two of you’ for the last time. If you have the budget for it, planning a trip far away from home would be ideal.

We did a ‘Sho’t left’ to Umhlanga and spent almost every day at the beach with me stuffing myself with frozen yoghurt (I had a sweet tooth while pregnant!). But even without the vacation, just doing more stuff as a couple is important before baby arrives. I didn’t believe it when people told me but the relationship really changes after birth. In a good way overall but I do miss being able to plan a night out without calling every single relative we have living in close proximity to us, to check who is able to babysit for a while. Also, believe the mantra – happy parents make for a happy family so the time spent on the parents is never a waste.

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  1. Read those books/ go to gym/take the long showers/play Adele at the loudest volume setting – enjoy ME time!!

This is something that I’m struggling with every day post-baby. I miss having time to myself without any restraints.

A simple thing like going to spinning in the morning relies on either my husband being home or the nanny coming in to work on time so that I can leave my baby and go torture myself in the spinning studio. Playing music while cooking – hahaha – that is something I used to do but no longer can because really after putting baby down a couple of times, no one wants to wake her up when she is finally sleeping. And Lord, the day I can have a shower when I want to shower for as long as I want to shower will be the happiest days of my life. Right now, I either shower late at night when her dad gets home from work or put baby in the bouncer, move the bouncer into the bathroom and shower with the door partially open to make sure baby can hear/see me at all times so she doesn’t start screaming again. Sigh. The life of a new mum.

There’s no doubt that life changes a lot after baby arrives. I’m still dealing with the changes and clearly have no pearls of wisdom on how to survive them. What I can say is that the day your baby looks up at you and you get a toothless smile (filled with a lot of spit bubbles) is the day when you realise that it was all worth it – the changing body, constant worry, dealing with the never-ending mummy guilt and family judgment was all worth it as you will realise that you are the best mother that this baby has.

And so what if you get this smile while you haven’t brushed your teeth or had a shower? 🙂

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Thanks Simple Girl for sharing your journey frankly, I see so many guest posts that you hinted at in this post and will try and hold you to that!

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Some wedding dresses for brides to be

Wouldn’t do any of these but I would love to be friends with the girl that could carry them off.
Penelope-1

164A9121

Agata-1

Luisa-1 Francesca Miranda FW 2016 collection

Yes, I still check out wedding stuff from some of my old favourites.

My favourites are number 1 and 4.

Love that #1 is playful but it could also be adapted into a long, short or midi dress. I also like the polka dots on the trail and seeing it again, it could be done into a jumpsuit!

#4 has the type of neckline that I just love and indeed, my wedding dress had an illusion neckline as well.

If you any girl that would wear these dresses, send her my way 🙂

 

Gnovembers favourite things list

Currently listening to this album and loving it. A bit late but it’s been my work jam for some time now!

Recently read the following book: Review here.

Recently shopped at The Space in Rosebank. I love the shop, often has lovely clothes but of a larger size. Check it out!

Currently drinking Ginger Glace tea from Tea Merchants

Ginger Glace

I have enjoyed eating Tapas at Doppio Zero in Rosebank. My favourites, Chickpea fritters, fried haloumi, the calamari and chicken livers. Just yum and not too filling if you are having an early dinner.

I am ashamed that I watch the following reality shows but I so do love them:

Also, do reach out to a friend and enjoy the little moments. Life is too short and great friends are hard to come by so keep the few that you make

*All views my own

Monthly menus: September

This month, I intend to cook:

Pasta tuna bake with cauliflower/broccoli with lemon Dessert: Malva pudding

Butternut and lentil curry with plain rice

Grilled lemony fish fillets, potatoes and stir fried vegetables Dessert: Custardy Apple cake

PS: The ice cream making is on pause because I don’t have freezer space!

Monthly menus: August

Following up from this post about how to save on your cooking budget and ensure that you eat healthy at the same time.

A key part of preparing that shopping list is item (4) i.e pre-planning meals for the upcoming month and then determining whether those ingredients are available/ if they must be bought with that months shopping. As you know I love to write lists and so I have a rough list showing all the different categories of foods I like to eat and then I can mix and match as necessary so it lists carbs, vegetables and proteins.

For the month of August, this is what I have in store to cook. With time, I shall start to take pictures and a re-cap of what works and what doesn’t.

Pasta with chicken livers and bacon (and herbs) & cabbage with mustard seeds.

Roasted vegetables with couscous. Dessert: Coconut and Cardamom Pannacotta 

Potato Bake & Roasted butternut.  Dessert: Fresh Spearmint Ice cream and Vanilla frozen Yoghurt

Baked mushroom risottoDessert: Orange self-saucing pudding

Happy eating!

 

 

The story of a friendship ….

Normal programming will resume soon but for today, I am guest posting over at Nyangi Styles, talking about friendship through clothes and accessories. Continue reading …

Christmas/ birthday wish list

It’s always nice to have Christmas and then my birthday in the following month. So if someone would like an idea of something to get me …

KRUPS - ICE CREAM MAKER

Ice cream maker ….. this is first for a reason!

Blender ,food Processor,hand Mixer,hand Blender...

Really just want the mixer and the food processor bit

Winter work out gear

Fake polo bag? Check

This is quite the controversial book

Happy shopping and finally December! Hello old friend!

How to: Pre-plan meals

In this day and age of rising food prices, its important to try and save a quick buck on meals without compromising on the nutritive value. Below, this is how I go about thinking of cooking meals, both at the shopping level, actual cooking and there in between.

  1. Have a list of quick and favourite meals that can be made quickly and that are a firm favourite with the family.
  2. Stock your pantry with certain standard/”go-to” ingredients. These will vary from household to household, mine include: baked beans, pasta, rice, nuggets, cereal, cheese and cream.
  3. Use a “master” shopping list to quickly determine what’s missing and what you need to include in your shopping list. This way you can shop in one go and not miss out on key things. This minimises time spent shopping later in the month. However, for items such as milk, bread and certain fruits, it would be necessary to purchase those on a weekly basis.
  4. Think through the up-coming meals for the month. There is many ways to do this: (a)  cook for the week, freeze extra portions in case you are tired and can’t cook that week; (b)  alternatively, cook the more difficult meals in advance and do the lighter bits – vegetables and salads – on the main day.
  5. Re-use left over meals and adapt them into new meals, for instance, remaking  chicken into a salad. Finish all cooked meals, making nothing new until all the food is complete.
  6. Regularly sweep through the pantry and come up with innovative meals using some of those ingredients.
  7. Eat out often, try new meals at home in a bid to obtain greater variety and flexibility.
  8. Freeze vegetables and herbs as they will still be as good as new whenever you need to use them. Do this for: tomatoes, peas, peppers and other herbs. Prepare ingredients such as ginger and garlic in advance to save on time.
  9. Invest in sufficient containers to store food.
  10. Share the cooking responsibility to make it fun and less of a drudge.

How do you go around saving time and money in the kitchen?