Maternity Clothing Tips & Tricks

As your pregnancy progresses, you may find that your favorite pants no longer fit. Or, perhaps your shirts are getting tighter. While some women are initially hesitant when it comes to the idea of maternity clothes, they may actually help you feel more comfortable.

Plus, maternity clothes have come a long way in recent years. Forget shapeless tent dresses and oversized panel pants. Nowadays, you can dress cute and comfortably at any stage of your pregnancy.

Frugal

Many women can’t afford to spend a lot of money on clothes that they will only wear for a few months. If this is the case for you, consider shopping for second-hand maternity clothes. Chances are the woman that wore the clothes before you only used them for a few months too!

Fashionable

A lot of maternity clothes are designed in such a way that they can also be worn after the baby is born. Choose dresses and skirts that flow and pair them with loose tops that will still look great on you after you deliver.

Fun

Use this time to take advantage of accessories that you haven’t worn in the past. Indulge in pretty scarves, dangly earrings, dramatic necklaces, and cute shoes to complement your outfit.

Flaunt

One of the biggest style mistakes that a pregnant woman can make is to buy oversized regular clothes in an attempt to hide her shape instead of embracing form-fitting maternity fashions. Show off your growing belly with pride!

Keep these tips in mind throughout your pregnancy. After all, the way that you feel about how you look can have a big impact on your overall mood. And when you decide that your family is complete, consider passing along your cute maternity items to a family member or friend.


Pregnancy Pains

It’s no secret that pregnancy is hard on your body. Your baby is growing daily, and it can take a toll on you. While some aches and pains are to be expected, it’s important to know when to contact your doctor.

Pregnant women often experience back and hip pain, in addition to a variety of other symptoms. Ask your doctor to go over the most common problems with you so that you can know what to expect ahead of time. If you have any of the following issues, contact your doctor right away, as it could be a sign of a more serious condition.

While many causes of vaginal bleeding during pregnancy may not lead to long-term problems, it is something that should be checked out as soon as possible. Your doctor will want to know when it started, how long it has gone on, how many pads you are using, and whether you recently experienced any abdominal trauma or sexual intercourse.

During the second and third trimester, development of a severe headache with swelling all over (including the hands and face) can be a dangerous sign of impending preeclampsia. This can be dangerous for both you and your baby and should be evaluated promptly. Foot and leg swelling with occasional mild headaches during your first trimester are normal and may be alleviated by drinking more water.

Early in pregnancy, intense abdominal pain may indicate an ectopic pregnancy. Late in pregnancy, intense abdominal pain may signal contractions. It is normal for the uterus to “practice” contracting, so this isn’t necessarily a sign of labor. However, if you have contractions that come regularly every 3 to 5 minutes for more than an hour, you should contact your doctor.

If this isn’t your first pregnancy, it’s important to keep in mind that things may be different this time around. No two pregnancies are exactly alike, and you may experience different symptoms than you had with a previous child. This blog is, of course, not all-inclusive. So, if you are unsure whether or not you should make an appointment with your doctor, it’s always best to err on the side of caution.


Preventing and Treating Morning Sickness

For many moms-to-be, the “morning” in “morning sickness” is a bit of a misnomer. While hormone levels surge to support the needs of a growing baby, a lot of women are ill throughout the day for weeks or even months at a time. While your doctor may tell you that this type of nausea is worse when you first wake up and that you’ll experience some relief as you go from the first trimester into the second, you might be wondering what you can do to feel better now.

Get plenty of rest.

While it can be difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position or the time to get enough rest if you have other little ones running around, it is so important to take care of yourself. Enlist the help of family and friends who have offered to lend a hand. Ask them to babysit or even straighten up the house while you get some shut-eye.

Be careful getting up in the morning.

Popping out of bed quickly, drinking a cup of coffee, and sitting down in front of the computer is a normal way of life for many busy women. However, all three of those things can contribute to morning sickness. Taking your time getting out of bed, choosing non-caffeinated tea, and avoiding the flicker of the computer monitor can help you keep your breakfast down.

Watch what you eat.

Avoid spicy foods (even if that late-night craving for hot wings is hard to resist), drink a lot of fluids, eat ginger, switch to a smaller prenatal vitamin, and ask your doctor if antacid medication is right for you.

Your physician may also recommend an anti-nausea medication to help you get through these first weeks and months. It is important to talk to your doctor right away if you find that you weigh much less than before you were pregnant or you are concerned about being dehydrated. While “morning” sickness may be a reality for most pregnant women, these tips are great to keep in mind for both preventing and treating it.


Foods to Avoid During Pregnancy

It’s perfectly natural to have cravings during pregnancy. After morning sickness subsides, many moms-to-be find themselves with an appetite for a variety of foods. You’ve likely heard stories of strange pickles and ice cream cravings, or maybe you’ve even experienced it yourself! Whatever cravings that you’re dealing with, it’s important to keep in mind that certain foods can harm your developing baby and should be avoided.

Avoid seafood high in mercury.

While seafood is a great source of protein and omega fatty acids, it can also be a source of mercury, which can be damaging to developing brains and nerves. Many women have heard that canned tuna is high in mercury, but the FDA has actually approved up to 12 ounces per week for pregnant women. So, while you don’t have to cut seafood out of your diet entirely, it’s important to monitor your intake.

Cook everything completely and thoroughly.

Raw and undercooked seafood, meat, poultry, and eggs are more likely to harbor harmful bacteria. So, thoroughly cooking your food is a no-brainer. You’ll just have to keep that sushi craving at bay for a few more months! Some less obvious sources of undercooked foods to avoid include eggnog, hollandaise sauce, oysters, and clams.

Stay away from unpasteurized foods.

Soft cheeses may be just what you’re craving, but they are another common cause of foodborne illness. Consider buying pasteurized eggs and avoid any unpasteurized juice. On the plus side, ice cream is typically made with pasteurized ingredients. So, feel free to enjoy it in moderation!

Keep these things in mind and do your best to incorporate a well-balanced diet full of fruits and veggies for both you and your baby. And, if you’re looking for new foods to try, check out our Recipes board on Pinterest.


Blue or Pink?

Most expectant parents can’t wait to learn whether they will be painting the nursery blue or pink, but nowadays, that can mean more than just getting an ultrasound print. Family members and friends are often just as eager to learn the sex of the baby so that they can start purchasing clothing and other gifts.

So, many are choosing to combine a traditional baby shower with a party to reveal the gender of the baby. In recent years, the popularity of this trend has increased, and there are a number of creative ways that you can plan your own.

Create Teams

When guests arrive to your party, have them guess whether or not the baby will be a girl or a boy. Then, pit the teams against each other for a little friendly competition before the big reveal.

Bake a Cake

Have your ultrasound technician write the gender on a piece of paper and seal it in an envelope. Give the envelope to your favorite local bakery and ask them to color the inside of the cake pink or blue based on the information on the paper. When you cut into the cake at the party, everyone will gather around for the reveal and as an added bonus – dessert!

Use Decorations

Whether you know the gender of your baby ahead of time and simply want to decorate in pink or blue for the party or you want to be in on the surprise yourself, decorations are an easy way to achieve the goal. Have a party store put the appropriate color balloons in a box, which you can then open with your family and friends for the reveal.

Whatever you choose, have fun with it! Make your event unforgettable with personal touches, and be sure to have a friend or even a professional photographer present to capture the memories.


Combatting Unhealthy Pregnancy Cravings

Pregnancy is often associated with cravings. If you find yourself longing for ice cream or French fries, you may be wondering if these types of food are healthy for you or your baby. Many pregnant women also fear putting on too many pounds while “eating for two,” since it can be even harder to lose the weight once the baby is born.

While it can be easy to fill up on junk food, it’s really not the best decision that you can make for yourself or your baby. Making healthy choices throughout your pregnancy can not only benefit your baby, but also it can improve your overall health. It’s helpful to keep the following tips in mind.

1) Indulge, but eat smaller portions. Foods with a lot of sugar or fat are, of course, appealing, and while it might seem like they should be off-limits, it is actually okay to eat them in moderation. It’s even better if you can find low-fat versions of your favorite foods. There are also snack-size versions of most types of junk food that can allow you to satisfy your sweet tooth without consuming a lot of extra calories.

2) Eat a balanced diet. Even if you are battling nausea during your first trimester, it is best to eat balanced meals and smaller portions. Eat regularly throughout the day to keep your blood sugar stable. Avoid crashes or dips in blood sugar that may tempt you to veer off your healthy eating plan.

3) Exercise regularly. Consult with your doctor about the recommended level of activity for your health and stage of pregnancy. Staying active can help you feel better overall and ward off unhealthy food cravings.

If you surround yourself with fresh food options, you are more likely to make healthy choices on a regular basis, and a little planning ahead can make it much easier on yourself. So, visit our Healthy Meal Ideas Pinterest board for wholesome recipes!


An Expectant Mother?

Expectant MotherThe dictionary describes expectation as, “prospects, especially of success or gain.”

Parents, especially mothers, seem to have great expectations for their offspring. This post isn’t addressing mothers who’s expectations have been met. Rather, it’s directed at mothers who are or have been disappointed in the choices their children have made in life.

It’s a hard thing for a mother to accept how their child has grown up. Perhaps they’ve chosen an alternative versus conventional lifestyle, or they just haven’t made their mark in life. Maybe they’re still living at home or worse – have brought their own children into your home to mooch off everyone else’s salary but their own.

Life has a way of throwing curve balls.

But there is another option.

Rather than becoming pessimistic in regard to your expectations for your children, why not drop all of them, accept your children as they are and stop trying to control their lives. After all, life isn’t always about what we want as a parent. It’s about supporting and loving our children unconditionally even though we can see their choices aren’t the wisest or the best for them.

Often, the most valuable life lessons have come from poor choices. We should continue to care about and guide our children but it just may be more beneficial to them if we try to accept them as they are. Let them grow into the adults they are meant to be. You just may get more than you expected.

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