Pregnancy Update – 38 Weeks

Okay, so I haven’t been as good at doing these weekly updates as I’d hoped I would be.  Aside from the initial ‘3 become 4’ post I’ve managed one half-assed 20 week update which was published 17 weeks late!  So I’ll just quickly recap whats gone down over the past few months and bring you all up to speed.

I’m now a few days away from being 38 weeks and I am done.  We’re all getting so impatient to meet this little one and the thought of waiting another few weeks is killing me!  This pregnancy has been entirely different to Connors and not in a better way; baby number 2 seems to be trying it’s best to be twisted at any given opportunity and it’s definitely taken it’s toll on me.

It all started when Connor started nursery back in September- he came home with a cold towards the end of the week and obviously just had to share it with Mummy (he’s nice like that!).  Connor was back to normal within the next few days but I wasn’t so lucky.  It turned into a chest infection that I couldn’t shift no matter what I did – 4 months, 4 courses of anti biotics, 2 hospital admissions and 1 CT scan to look for blood clots later and I think I can finally say I’m over it.  I had to start my maternity leave early as I just wasn’t fit to be there and didn’t want to share whatever I had with the elderly people I work with.

As if all that wasn’t enough to be going on with, we were sent for a growth scan during the second of my hospital admissions as one of the midwifes felt that although my stomach measured on track the baby ‘felt small’ with her hands.  This was at 31 weeks which was when Connor had started to measure behind due to my having pre-eclampsia so I started to panic slightly.   Turns out this chunk was already measuring in at 4lb 3oz and was 2+ weeks ahead – panic over!  The same midwife was also convinced that baby was breech – it wasn’t thank fully but this being in my notes caused my community midwife to have her doubts too.

The following week when I attended my local midwife and filled her in with what had been going on since I had seen her last, she did all her checks and everything was fine.  When she felt for babies position she said that both ends felt a similar size so she wasn’t convinced that the baby was still head down & to come back in a couple of weeks because nothing would be done until 36 weeks anyway.  I was pretty sure baby was head down because of the pressure and pain I’d been feeling.  Also, Connor had a much bigger head than he had bum when he was born so I was pretty confident that this baby was the same.  I went back at 34 weeks and she couldn’t tell but was leaning towards baby being breech, although she couldn’t say for sure.  I went for my 36 week check last week and she was 100% convinced that baby was breech and I was booked in for a scan for Monday – 4 days away.  However, there were a few things that happened at that appointment that had me slightly unsettled and I knew I wouldn’t have been at peace until I knew what was happening so luckily I managed to rearrange the appointment for the following day.  There wasn’t anything that caused the midwife any concern but a few of my stats mirrored those I had at my last appointment with Connor which was just days before the pre-eclampsia kicked in so obviously my mind went into over drive.  Also the babies heart rate was raised and took a while to settle to a rate that the midwife was happy with so that had me slightly concerned too.

Fast forward to the Friday and I had myself so convinced that something was going to be wrong when we got to the hospital.   I took my hospital bag with us and was waiting to hear that the babies heart rate or my blood pressure were too high and that paired with the breech position meant that the baby would have to be delivered.  Thankfully that never happened – we were in the scan room 5 minutes, if that, and were informed that baby was infact head down!  So all my worrying was unfounded and we’re back to the waiting game.

Connor was born at just past 37 weeks so I really don’t know how to do these last few weeks.  I’ve been getting a ridiculous amount of Braxton Hicks as well, which is something I never experienced last time – they’re really bloody painful!  My birthing ball is getting full use, it’s basically the only place I can sit that’s even remotely comfortable.  I don’t have another appointment with my midwife until 39 weeks but I’ve got everything crossed that I don’t make it that far!  Any recommendations to bring on labour?  I’ve heard about eating pineapple and dates (?) and obviously I’ve been using the birthing ball but I’m open to suggestions!

When did you have your babies?  Was it true for you that your second babies came earlier than the first?


* UPDATE!! Baby was born literally a couple of days after I wrote this post! So I didn’t manage to get any nice pregnancy shots like I had planned.  Birth story coming soon!


Pregnancy Updates – Week 20

Well I’m half way there!  Week 20 has landed.  It really has flown in this time, it feels like literally 2 minutes ago that we found out we were expecting baby number 2 and now the countdown really is on!

I’m finally feeling slightly more human, the sickness and nausea seem to be gone for the moment (touch wood).  I am still pretty shattered at the end of every day but I think that’s just the way it’s going to be for the foreseeable.  Not feeling baby move much as of yet, a few little punches and kicks here and there but it’s definitely not into a “routine”.  Although whenever I say I haven’t felt it move for a while I always seem to get kicked at that exact moment, clearly this baby can hear & understand what I’m saying!

Blood pressure is still behaving thank goodness so I’m keeping everything crossed that it stays that way.  I’ve had to have blood taken on 4 separate occasions as they’ve managed to lose my blood samples twice and it seems like my veins have gone on strike as it’s a bloody nightmare for them to find anywhere to put the needle in.  So, you know, swings and roundabouts haha!

My hips/back/pelvis are generally pretty sore most of the time, some days are worse than others but again it was the same when I was pregnant with Connor so it’s just par for the course.

We had our 20 week scan this week and everything is looking great.  Like I said in my previous post; we won’t be finding out the sex this time as they got it wrong with Connor and we don’t want a repeat of that.  I’m hoping I can get David on board with going for a 4D scan so Connor can come with us and also so we have the same scan photos of each of the kids – I like to keep things even.  He’s not having me on at the moment, he says those scans creep him out but I’m working on it.





Kids Stocking Filler Ideas That Won’t Break The Bank!


I thought I’d share with you what we’ve got for Connors stocking this year; you’ll have to bear with me on the photo front – they’re not great but in my defense I do live in Scotland and since it’s December it’s basically dark all day long!

I’ll try and remember where I got everything from & how much it was and where possible I’ll put a link in.  So here we go!



This little Paw Patrol Marshall bath set was from B&M and I’m now thinking it might be slightly too big to fit in Connors stocking so it might just get wrapped with the rest of his stuff.  I can’t find it on the B&M website but it’s on Amazon here.


Connor has recently decided that he’s a Hulk fan – we have no clue where that came from as he’s never seen the Avengers!  I saw this little snack pot set in Home Bargains and thought it would be a cute stocking filler.  It’s got a drinking cup, bowl & plate which also doubles as a lid.  I’ve seen it online in other characters as well & got Iron Man for one of Connors’ friends!


We love Orchard Toys in our house so when I saw they did Mini Games I thought they would be the perfect stocking filler. This one was £4.04 from Amazon & I think Connor will love it!


I picked these up in Home Bargains for £1.69 each!  I thought they’d help Connor with his letters and numbers, they’re the perfect size to slip into a stocking.


Connor has a couple of Thomas and Friends Take-n-Play sets & he’s forever losing the engines so when I saw this in Smyths I picked it up.  It’s currently out of stock online but they had loads in my local store and they were cheaper in there too (£3!). Smyths were also offering a buy 1 get 1 half price on all the thomas engines, so it worked out even cheaper – obviously I bought quite a few but they won’t all fit in his stocking!








                  I picked these up in the pound shop for the bargain price of – you guessed it – £1 each!  I’ve also got David Batman & Hulk socks for his stocking so that the boys can match, Connor loves getting the same as his Daddy!  The handcuffs are because he loves playing cops & robbers so I thought these would be fun!


I’m sick to death of the hatching dinosaur eggs so when I saw this I thought it was a little bit different.  Instead of having to put it in water & wait for days this one fizzes away instantly and reveals whatever dinosaur you have!  I picked it up in Smyths for £3.99 and they had a few different kinds but it seems to be out of stock online so I found it here for the same price!


My child, like most other 3 year olds absolutely loves bubbles.  I saw this in B&M for £1.79 and thought it made a nice change to the normal bubbles.  The bubble solution comes with it & you dip the wand into it then blow through the other end to create the blizzard of bubbles!  This seems to be only available in store so keep an eye out next time you’re in!


I couldn’t buy more engines for the Take-n-Play sets and not get Connor.  This one was pretty expensive to buy online – apparently it’s rare or something – so when I saw someone selling it on ebay I nabbed it!


This Hulk bath bomb I picked up in Poundland since we have a huge Hulk fan on our hands now!  The putty I got in Smyths, I think it was around £1.29, pretty self explanatory!


Paw Patrol Bath Foam.  Connor loves bath foam & his current one is about done, this one was from Home Bargains I think, it was around 89p but they also do it in the poundshop.


What stocking would be complete without chocolate?!  The giant coin is from B&M, I think it was around £1.  The little bag of snowmen were 89p from Aldi and I think the lollies were from Home Bargains.


So I think that’s everything that will be going in Connors stocking – with the exception of a tangerine, does anyone else do that?  I hope this has helped give you some ideas, what are you putting in your kids stockings?  Let me know in the comments or follow me on Instagram @lifeinthegingerlane and drop me a DM I’d love to hear from you!


V xx

Elf on the Shelf Ideas!


Yep, it’s that time of year again when the pesky Elf on the Shelf comes back to join us!  I must admit, I do absolutely love it, even more so this year as it’s the first year Connor properly believes in the magic and it’s amazing to watch.

I usually like to plan ahead & do have an Elf on the Shelf bag filled with bits and bobs I’ve collected over the course of the year.  I showed David said bag the other night & he literally tried to divorce me on the spot haha!  Apparently that’s not normal behaviour & I need my head looked at but if it makes my sons Christmas that little bit more special then I’ll take being thought of as nuts!  I’m not going to lie, I do tend to get completely carried away but it’s all part of the magic, isn’t it?

Having said all that, I thought I’d share a few of the things our elf – Reindeer (Connor named him) – has done the past couple of times he has come to visit.


Reindeer did his own washing.  He even hung it on the line to dry!


This was a personal favourite of mine.  We were greeted in the morning with Reindeer holding a variety of coloured card all cut into different shapes & a note that read ‘Do you want to build a snowman?’.  Connor & I spent the morning sticking the shapes onto the livingroom door and making our own snowman!


Tea party with the dinosaurs including the fish he had caught in the kitchen sink the night before!  I just love the way the T-Rex is holding that tiny china cup!


This took place over 3 nights.  Reindeer arrived with a note and a little packet of seeds (tic tacs) to be planted in the ‘Elf Garden’ (hot chocolate & empty candle jar, with some ribbon).  Connor planted them & by the next morning they had grown into candy canes.  Cheeky Reindeer then took the candy canes and turned them into a sledge which he used to go down our banister!


Reindeer had gotten fed up waiting for Connor to write his letter to Santa so he brought one for him to do.

Playing target practise with snowballs – Connor really enjoyed playing this in the morning.  Captain Reindeer crash landed his plane into the Christmas tree!

I’ve posted a few more of them over on my Instagram @lifeinthegingerlane  please pop over and follow – I’d love to see you over there.  Have you started the Elf on the Shelf tradition?  What kind of thing does your Elf get up to?

V xx

Book Review – The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris. Jenny Colgan



As dawn breaks over the Pont Neuf, and the cobbled alleyways of Paris come to life, Anna Trent is already awake and at work, mixing and stirring the finest, smoothest, richest chocolate; made entirely by hand, it is sold to the grandes dames of Paris.

It’s a huge shift from the chocolate factory she worked in at home in the north of England.  But when an accident changed everything, Anna was thrown back in touch with her French teacher, Claire, who offered her the chance of a lifetime – to work in Paris with her former sweetheart Thierry, a master chocolatier.

With old wounds about to be uncovered and healed, Anna is set to discover more about real chocolate – and herself – than she ever dreamed.


What I thought

This has been sitting on my bookshelf waiting to be read for probably about 2 years, if not longer, so I figured it was high time I gave it a read.  I’ve never been to Paris but I love to read books that are set/about there plus I love chocolate so I was pretty sure I was on to a winner before I even started!  Thankfully I was right!

The book starts with quite a serious situation although it’s written in such a way that it never drags the story down – the tone always remains light hearted and relatively positive, definitely a hard thing to do!  I loved following the journey of the lead character Anna and watching her grow as the book progressed, this was another page turner – I finished it in a matter of hours!  The contrast between the stories of Anna and her high school French teacher, Claire was a nice touch.  There were a few striking similarities but Anna’s ending was very different to Claires.

The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris deals with some hard hitting issues which could be quite difficult to read but thankfully Jenny Colgan writes about them in such a way that they don’t affect the overall feel of the book.   I really enjoyed this book and am now looking forward to working my way through the rest of my Jenny Colgan collection!

Next on my list

I haven’t quite decided yet.  I’m trying to work my way through my bookshelf and clear out before baby number 2 arrives – we badly need the space!!  I may just start at the beginning and work my way down!  Watch this space!

V xx

Book Review – Then. Now. Always. Isabelle Broom


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Are you ready for an adventure?

Hannah Hodges certainly is.  And so when she is offered the opportunity to spend a month filming in a magical Andalusian village on the south-east coast of Spain, she grabs it.  Andalusia was where she spent a large part of her youth; made so many of her memories, and her mistakes.

But this time it is going to be perfect.  Because she is not only going with her best friend, Tom, but also with her gorgeous boss, Theo.  And this unforgettable place is the perfect location to make Theo finally fall under her spell.

Except Hannah’s past is everywhere she looks, Tom is acting increasingly distant, and her half-sister appears determined to ruin everything.  Again.

Hannah has just a month in paradise to secure the happy future she knows is waiting for her.  Will Andalusia work its magic?  And will that future look exactly as she always thought it would?

What I thought.

Having previously read A Year and A Day by Isabelle Broom and absolutely loved it, I knew I had to pick Then. Now. Always. up when I saw it in a local charity shop.  I’m so glad I did, I’ve been out of the habit of reading for a few months now but this has definitely reminded me why I love books.  Similar to A Year and A Day the setting plays a huge part in the story and I have now added Mojácar to my list of places to visit, it sounds absolutely magical.

The central character of Hannah is so relatable and I found myself to be completely in her corner when it came to certain moments throughout the story.  I felt as if I was actually Hannah’s’ friend and was completely aghast at the actions of other characters; as ridiculous as that may sound I was totally involved in the story.  This is a love story at it’s core but not necessarily the one you might imagine.  There are a few twists and turns along the way; the course of true love never did run smooth after all, but all the little pieces of the story link up so perfectly that the book just wouldn’t be the same without them.  I found my self so eager to find out what happened that I finished the book in a matter of hours, I literally devoured it!  However,  I can’t say that the book ended in the way that I would have liked – I’m a romantic at heart – but I’m also a big sister so I’m not against it either, to be honest I quite liked that Isabelle Broom didn’t opt for the generic ending.


Next on my list

The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris – Jenny Colgan

This has been sat on my bookshelf, along with a few other Jenny Colgan books for a while now so it’s about time I got around to reading it.  I’ve read a few books by Jenny Colgan in the past so if they’re anything to go by then this should be a great read!

V xx


Bedtime Routine

I’ve seen a few posts recently about bedtime routines and I thought I would add ours to the mix.  We have had basically the same routine since Connor was born with a few add ons as he has gotten older.

To be fair, he always has been a relatively good sleeper – I’m convinced this means the next one is going to be an insomniac!  I do think, however, that having some kind of routine also helps settle your little one at night.

The bedtime routine here starts at roughly 6pm, this is when I start to run the bath.  He does get bathed at my Mum & Dads quite often so depending on whether we are at home or there this time can vary by 15-20 mins.  Bath time usually lasts about 20 minutes, give or take, unless my Dad is bathing him in which case the pair of them can be in there for nearer an hour playing with dinosaurs.

After bath its jammies on, sometimes I put a body lotion on Connor – particularly in the colder months, I like to use the Dove Baby range as it’s so lovely!  Then if he’s hungry he has some supper, usually a slice of toast and some milk; to be honest, he eats that much during the day that he rarely asks for anything!

By this point it’s around 7pm so we head upstairs to his room where he will pick his books for the night.  If David is home Connor usually drags him upstairs to play tennis or some random made up game involving rolls of cellotape but if it’s just the two of us we go straight for the books – I’m clearly not as fun as Daddy!  Most nights we read 2 books but if they are particularly short or we happen to be in bed earlier than planned then we might add another one on!  His favourites at the moment are the Sir Charlie Stinky Socks collection by Kristina Stephenson or any dinosaur related book that catches his eye!

After the books it’s time to brush his teeth, I usually do it first much to his disgust & then he finishes them off by himself. I tuck him into bed and sometimes he asks me to sing him a song – the most requested number is Little Bunny Foo Foo but every now and again he lets me choose!  A kiss and a cuddle follow and then it’s lights out & I head downstairs for some peace (and usually my dinner!)  Most of the time that’s him out for the night but if he does shout on one of us we go into his room, sort the problem and leave again.  Lately we’ve actually taken to just staying outside the room and telling him it’s time to sleep as we discovered that he was just shouting on us for a chat!  As if he doesn’t talk enough during the day haha!

On a good night I’m downstairs for 7.30pm at the latest and he sleeps through until 7am most mornings.  We follow the same routine for his nap during the day, he’ll usually sleep for about an hour and a half after nursery.  We’re so lucky that at 3 he will still nap, I know a lot of his wee friends have refused it for a while now.

So that’s our bedtime routine.  When number 2 comes along we’ll do the same with them and fingers crossed it’ll work as well second time around!

What’s your bedtime routine with your little one?


V xx


The Scottish Tag

I feel like I’m lacking any kind of writing inspiration these days, baby brain has arrived early second time around! So I thought I would do a little tag and hopefully get my blogging mojo back.  What better tag to do than ‘The Scottish Tag’, I saw this over on a couple of  You Tube Channels – Mrs Meldrum and Mama Reid so being Scottish, I thought I’d jump on the bandwagon!


The Scottish Tag

Question 1: Whereabouts in Scotland are you from?

I’m from a wee village about 20mins outside Glasgow.

Question 2: Where’s your favourite place you’ve been in Scotland?

I love Edinburgh.  We don’t go often as David used to work there & it lost it’s charm for him but it’s definitely one of the most beautiful places I’ve been in Scotland.  The buildings are absolutely gorgeous; I could spend hours just walking around looking at them.  There’s so much history there as well and the people watching is fab!

Question 3: Where would you like to visit in Scotland?
I’d love to do some of the Islands.  The Fairy Pools in Skye are on my bucket list – they look unbelievable!
Question 4: What is your favourite Scottish film?
I don’t really have one.  I’ve seen Trainspotting but I didn’t find it up to much.  I would probably have to say Braveheart – I mean the acting is pretty awful but there’s just something about it.
Question 5: Do you match up to any Scottish stereotypes?
Well apart from the obvious one – I’m ginger!  I don’t wear a kilt or play bagpipes and I’m rarely drunk.  Also, I hate haggis.  Irn Bru is great though as are deep fried Mars Bars.
Question 6: What is your favourite Scottish food?
Tablet?  Is that Scottish?  It’s more of a sweet than a proper food I suppose.  Like I said before, I hate haggis.  I’m not sure what else is classed as a ‘Scottish food’  tottie scones, square sausage?  STEAK PIE!! That’s definitely Scottish, everybody loves steak pie & if you don’t you just haven’t eaten a good one!
Question 7: Do you follow any Scottish traditions?
At school we always used to have a singing and poetry competition for Burns Night and a ceilidh for St Andrews Day.  Since I’m clearly not of school age anymore the only thing we really do is Hogmanay (New Years Eve) which apparently is only really a thing here in Scotland.
Question 8: What is your favourite Scottish word?
I probably say loads but they’re just words to me so it’s difficult to pick just one.  I say aye (yes) and crabbit (grumpy) a lot.
Question 9: What is your favourite Scottish song?
I love Loch Lomond.  I’ve always wondered how people from other countries know that a party is over if Loch Lomond isn’t played!  I also love Dignity by Deacon Blue and obviously Flower of Scotland.  Auld Lang Syne is a Hogmanay favourite too.
Question 10: Can you recommend any Scottish you tubers?
Like I said I found this tag through watching Mrs Meldrum and Mama Reid – I love both their channels so definitely go give them a watch!
I tag Kirsty from Honest K – I think you’ll love this one!
V xx

3 become 4

I know I said in my last post that I’d been AWOL for a while but that I had a good reason and then I disappeared again.  But now I’m really back and I promise it was/is a really good reason!

I’m having a baby!!




Baby number 2 to be exact and it’s kicking my ass!  I’m currently 17 weeks along and man am I feeling it.  I got slightly worried in the beginning as I didn’t have any symptoms til about 7/8 weeks whereas in my pregnancy with Connor I feel like I was nauseous from the minute I pee’d on the stick (sorry tmi!).  But not to worry the sickness finally arrived and it was worse than last time, so well worth the wait ha!  It even seemed to go up a notch when I hit 12 weeks.  At a time when many women’s sickness is slowly edging away mine decided that I hadn’t had enough yet and I started to be physically sick as opposed to only feeling it.  Entirely different from last time; I think I threw up a grand total of about 5 times during my pregnancy with Connor, I’ve well surpassed that now!

All is going well, baby is due in February and we are all very excited – Connor especially.  He loves to talk to the baby and sing songs with his guitar- it’s all very cute, I can’t wait to see them together.

I’m classed as high risk this pregnancy due to having pre-eclampsia with Connor so I have to have my blood pressure checked regularly – it’s behaving itself so far, fingers crossed that continues.  I also have to take an aspirin a day to try and avoid a repeat of last time, I must admit it found this quite hard to get my head around – I literally won’t even take a paracetamol for a headache when I’m pregnant, no idea why, my brain just won’t even consider it.  From what I’ve been told it can help with placenta development and function, which in turn can prevent pre-eclampsia from starting.  No idea if it works or not, but I’ll do what I’m told!

I was thinking I might do some regular updates on here about the pregnancy but I’ll wait until this yucky stage passes – sooner rather than later I hope – I don’t want to be all doom and gloom.

I’ve started feeling the baby move a little bit here and there which is all very exciting but it hasn’t half made everything a lot more real.  How the hell am I going to cope with 2 kids?   We definitely won’t be finding out the sex of this baby; as you all probably know we went for a private gender scan at 25 weeks with Connor and were told that we were having a little girl.  Imagine our surprise 12 weeks later when out came our beautiful little boy!  Obviously we wouldn’t change a thing but good God was that a shock to the system!

Have any of you suffered with pre-eclampsia previously and gone on to have a completely normal pregnancy?  Any tips for dealing with 2 kids?

V xx


Book Review – A Year and A Day Isabelle Broom


Welcome to a city where wishes are everywhere

For Megan, a winter escape to Prague with her friend Ollie is a chance to find some inspiration for her upcoming photography exhibition. But she’s determined to keep their friendship from becoming anything more. Because if Megan lets Ollie find out about her past, she risks losing everything – and she won’t let that happen again . . .

For Hope, the trip is a surprise treat from Charlie, her new partner. But she’s struggling to enjoy the beauty of the city when she knows how angry her daughter is back home. And that it’s all her fault . . .

For Sophie, the city has always been a magical place. This time she can’t stop counting down the moments until her boyfriend Robin joins her. But in historic Prague you can never escape the past . . .

Three different women.

Three intertwining love stories.

One unforgettable, timeless city.


What I thought

I had never read anything by Isabelle Broom before but I had seen this book posted all over Instagram, so when I saw it in my local charity shop I picked it up & stuck it in my case for our trip to Turkey.  I’m so glad I did.  I absolutely loved this book, so much so that once I’d finished it I gave it to my sister in law to read and totally forgot to take any pictures of it!  I started reading thinking that it would just be like every other chick-lit book I’ve ever read but I was wrong.  A Year and A Day is so much deeper than that, there are twists and turns throughout that you just don’t see coming.  Although there are 3 separate stories running through the book, they blend together so seamlessly that you don’t have to think about which tale belongs to who – you can just sit back and watch it all unfold before your eyes.  I’ve never had a book make me want to visit a city more – I cannot wait to go to Prague; it really is a character all of it’s own in this book and the descriptions of the city really do bring the story to life – you really feel like you could be there.  I have recommended this book to so many people since coming back from Turkey and will continue to do so.  I have now added all of Isabelle Brooms other books to my “to be read” list and can’t wait to see what those have in store.


Next on my list

The Last Piece of My Heart – Paige Toon

If you’ve been following my blog for a while then you will know that I adore Paige Toon.  I have read everything she has written and love them all equally.  I always finish one of her books and wonder how she will be able to top it with her next release but she always does.  I’m very excited to see if The Last Piece of My Heart lives up to my expectations, I’m sure it will.

What are you reading this week?

V xx