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Pregnancy Travel

Top 10 Babymoon tips

October 12, 2020

You might think that going on a babymoon is just like any other holiday, but after spending 10 days in Kos on mine, there’s definitely some big differences. I’ve put together some top tips that I hope will help you prepare for your babymoon, so you can make the most of your special trip.

  1. Choosing a location and type of holiday

    It goes without saying that the idea of a babymoon is to relax, so this is worth bearing in mine when choosing what type of holiday you want for your babymoon. Although sight seeing holidays, travelling around or city breaks may have taken your fancy previously, the chances are you’ll be much more tired and struggling to get around as easy when you’re pregnant, so a beach holiday in warm weather is ideal for a babymoon. But, each to their own and if you want to do a more active holiday for your babymoon then go for it!

    We chose to go all inclusive so we didn’t need to walk around every night and find somewhere to eat. We did go out a few nights, but it was nice to have everything available within the hotel grounds so we didn’t have to go far for anything we needed. Our hotel had multiple pools, a private beach, multiple restaurants and activities such as water sports, spa, group activities such as volleyball and yoga, evening entertainment and an on site shop, so it was ideal for the type of holiday we wanted – the ultimate relaxation.

    Weather and flight time are also good to consider when planning where to go on your babymoon. Originally we had planned to go back to Mexico where we had our honeymoon, which would have been an 11 hour flight. This was unfortunately cancelled due to COVID, but in hindsight now it was probably for the best as my back was really sore even after a 4 hour flight to Greece.

    You also don’t want it to be too hot when you’re heavily pregnant, as it feels like you’re walking round with a radiator inside you anyway! Weather will depend on the time of year and the destination you choose, so have a Google of the average weather and make a decision based on that.

    You might also want to consider an adults-only resort, as it will probably be the last time you’ll be able to do this, and the last thing you want on your relaxing babymoon is be disturbed by noisy children. You’ll have enough of that when your baby arrives!
  2. Take daytime activities to do in the shade

    I’m a sun worshipper as much as the next person, but unfortunately being pregnant, you can’t spend 8 hours a day basking in the glorious heat like you used to. As well as just chilling in the shade, you can take things with you to keep you occupied, here are a few ideas below:

    – Books or a Kindle. I used this opportunity to read The Positive Birth Book, which I would absolutely recommend for putting your mind at ease about labour.
    – Colouring books and felt tips. Colouring in is proven to lower blood pressure and make you feel more relaxed, so it’s a perfect babymoon activity.
    – Puzzle books. I took 2 travel size Sudoku and word search books with me and a pen, and these kept me occupied for hours!
    – Screens. Although you might face criticism for taking screens on holiday with you, don’t listen to anyone who’s judging you. It’s your holiday so you do you. Phones, iPads and laptops all provide a million and one things to do. You could do some baby shopping, catch up on some TV you’ve been meaning to watch, browse social media or download and play games. I’d recommend not taking any work devices though as you don’t want to be tempted to catch up on emails, and you don’t want people to think you’re available.

    Don’t forget that you still need suncream in the shade!
  3. Ideas for evening activities

    If you’re like me and holiday evenings usually revolved around alcohol, your babymoon will be very different and you might be thinking – what do we do of an evening without working our way through the cocktail menu?!

    Well here’s a few ideas:
    – Eat later. Stay by the pool or at the beach until the sun goes down, that way you won’t have as many hours to fill of an evening, and you may find you’re ready for bed straight after dinner.
    – Go for an evening stroll. This could just be at your hotel, or somewhere else. Go exploring and see what you can find.
    – Watch the sunset. How often do you get to watch the sunset at home? It’s such a lovely activity to do with your partner, so relaxing, and better still it’s completely free.
    – Work your way through the mocktail menu instead. Just because you’re pregnant doesn’t mean you can’t get glammed up and go out like you used to, you’ll just be on the soft stuff instead! Most hotels have an evening entertainment programme with performances every night.
    – Take a picnic to the beach for dinner. Find a supermarket if you can and pack a picnic to each at the beach for a change of scenery.
    – Chill in your hotel room. Often we can feel guilty for being in our hotel rooms on holiday, but there’s nothing wrong with curling up in your dressing gown and just chilling for the evening with the air con on with some snacks watching Netflix. Rest is needed so much more later on in pregnancy, so it will do you the world of good.
  4. Making your own pregnancy pillow

    Ok, this one’s quite important, as as you all know, you need to avoid sleeping on your back in later pregnancy. And as much as I’m sure you’d all love to pack your pregnancy pillows in your suitcase, it’s just not practical. On our first night I placed rolled up towels either side of where I was laying, and it worked well and stopped me from rolling over in the night.

    Another option is to ask your hotel for additional pillows. After our first night I asked for a couple of spare pillow and used these either side of me, slightly tucked under bump and inbetween my legs.

    The no lying on your back is also an issue when sunbathing, so the rolled up towels work great here and aren’t too obvious, but also most sun beds can be made upright.
  5. Packing pregnancy essentials

    You might not be aware, but you should take your maternity notes away with you when you go on holiday, just in case for any reason you might need them in an emergency. You’d think in this day and age that they’d be centrally stored online somewhere, but that’s a whole other topic…

    Make sure you get a fit to fly letter from your midwife. I had Googled that it was fine to fly with a single pregnancy if you had no complications up until 36 weeks, so I was really surprised when I was challenged at the airport and asked to show a fit to fly letter. They were even dubious about letting me on the flight with the letter because there was no date on it for when I could fly up until.

    Make sure you plan in advance and pack any medications you need, as it might be difficult to source these abroad and especially if they’re prescription. Pack these in your hand luggage so you have them at all times, even if your hold luggage was to go missing.

    Don’t forget to take your stretch mark cream with you, as you don’t want to miss out on a week or two’s application as it could result in you seeing stretch marks just from that short period of time.
  6. Holiday wear

    Most people babymoon towards the end of their second trimester or start of the third, so are definitely sporting a bump by this stage. This makes what to wear harder than a normal holiday, and you’ll probably find that most of your holiday wardrobe that you recycle every year no longer fits or is comfortable.

    Swimwear. My boobs have grown unbelievably big during pregnancy, so none of the swimwear I had fitted anymore. I ended up buying new bikini’s from Pretty Little Thing in much bigger sizes. I’m talking 16-18 for tops and 12-14 for bottoms, so at least sizing up by 3/4 sizes! It was worth it though as they were so comfortable.

    Instead of stretchy material tops with no support, or triangle bikinis, I went for bikini tops with built in cups, or that went over the shoulders like little crop tops, as found these were also supportive. Then instead of high waisted bikini bottoms that I’d usually go for, I’ve found the low rise tie side bottoms the best as they can be easily adjusted, and sit comfortably under bump. I managed to get all of my bikini’s in the PLT sale for less than £10 each, so it’s worth waiting until the end of summer to order if you’re going away when the kids have gone back to school.

    Floaty or smock dresses are a winner on holiday, they don’t even have to be maternity. They’re great for throwing on over a bikini in the daytime, or dressing up with some nice sandals and jewellery of an evening. I also love tight stretchy items that show off my bump. These again are great for daytime or night time depending on how you accessorise, and again they don’t have to be maternity dresses. Try everything on the week before you go. Something that fitted your bump a few weeks ago might not longer fit on your babymoon by the time you’re there, so make sure you try everything on just before you go.

    My midwife told me to pack some big floppy sun hats as they’re great for keeping the sun off your face and chest, and they look so good on Instagram. I’ve even seen some that say ‘Baby on board’, which is super cute.
  7. Flying

    It goes without saying that unless you’re able to splash out on upper class, flying won’t be a comfortable experience when pregnant, but there are a few things you can do to make it better.

    – Put your seatbelt under your bump. This is where it’s advised to go, and just helps protect the baby during any turbulence and is also the most comfortable place
    – Wear flight socks. I’ve never bothered with flight socks before, even long haul. But I bought a pair for our babymoon.
    – Stay hydrated and eat often. I know you probably need the toilet all the time, but you need to stay hydrated and drink lots of water when flying. Also take snacks with you to keep your blood sugars stable and to prevent feeling faint in hot weather.
    – The advice mostly given online and by midwives is to get up and walk up and down the plane every half an hour, but that’s easier said than done when the flight crew are serving food, there’s a queue for the toilet, or you’re packed into the window seat and need to ask a stranger to move every time! I only got up once during our flight to go to the toilet as COVID restrictions meant you weren’t allowed to just get up and walk around. I did do some stretches whilst sat down though to try and encourage blood flow.
    – Don’t be afraid to ask for help. You’re pregnant so you deserve special treatment! Make sure your partner does all the heavy lifting with cases, let airport and cabin crew staff know that you’re pregnant and make sure you ask if you need anything. One of our plane’s toilets was closed due to COVID restrictions, but they were fine with me using it so I didn’t have to queue if I was desperate. The airport staff also allowed us to go to the front of the luggage queue so I didn’t have to stand up and wait with heavy bags.
  8. Watch what you eat and drink

    You’ll know what you can and can’t have to eat and drink whilst pregnant, but it’s worth taking extra care when on holiday with things like all inclusive buffets, tap water and ice. Stick to what you know and just don’t get too adventurous with foreign cuisine when pregnant, as your digestive system is much more sensitive.

    Make sure you stock up on bottled water as soon as you can, and aim to drink at least 2/3L a day. We filled our fridge in our room with water so it was nice and cool when we came back from the pool or beach. I kept a water bottle I got from the airport and filled it up a couple of times a day to take with me so I always had water, as well as getting mocktails from the bar.

    I’ve loved eating and drinking on our babymoon, as it’s the one time in my life I’ve not been worried about calorie counting and looking good in a bikini. You’ll look good regardless because of your beautiful bump!
  9. Relax, but stay active

    Babymoons are made for relaxing, but it’s also a great opportunity to keep active by walking or swimming. Swimming can be a pain at home with having to sort your hair and getting changed, but on holiday it’s so easy and you can do it multiple times a day. Swimming is such great exercise when pregnant as there’s no weight on your joints but you’re still getting a cardio workout. It also helps cool bump down. I found Baby E fell fast asleep every time I swam, and woke up when I was lay down afterwards!

    I also find you walk a lot more on holiday. If you’re like me and you have a desk job, more recently fully home based as well, I’ll be lucky to even get 2000 steps on a normal day. But with walking around the hotel, to and from the beach and restaurants, not to mention million of toilet trips it really does add up and is great for burning off the extra holiday calories.
  10. Spend time together, connect with your baby, capture memories and most of all: RELAX!

    Your babymoon is an extra special occasion, so make the most of it. It’s your last holiday just the two of you before your bundle of joy arrives, so make sure you spend quality time together. Talk about your baby and what you’re excited for, but also take time to talk about things that aren’t related to baby. Savour every second of this time you have to yourselves.

    Capture as many memories as you can, you don’t have to upload them all, but they’ll be so lovely to look back on and show the baby when they’re older what they got up to when they were in your tummy.

    Most of all, take this time to fully and truly relax, however you want to.

Lifestyle Travel

One year on since my big 30th birthday blowout

October 2, 2020

With turning 31 in a couple of days and having lots of free time on holiday. I thought I’d put a blog together about my 30th last year. I’d been planning my 30th for such a long time, I knew I wanted it to be memorable, and that I wanted to celebrate with all my loved ones. I think I had about a month of celebrations overall, but if you can’t do that for a big birthday like your 30th, when can you?!

I started off the celebrations with a meal out with my work team, this is how I came into my desk on my last day of work before going off on annual leave. How cute! This makes me miss the office so much more. I haven’t been in except to collect some things since March now, and it’s looking like I won’t be back until after maternity leave now.

My work team got me some lovely gifts and all signed a card with some dollars in for America! It was lovely they had gone to so much effort.

I also went on a night out with my old work friends and had a family meal in Gusto, Heswall. I also planned a girlie sleepover at a Signature Living party suite in Liverpool, and a meal at Opera Grill gospel brunch in Chester for our friends.

Gospel brunch was amazing. They have a live gospel choir on whilst you eat, and it was so nice having such a big table of our friends to celebrate with. The choir sang happy birthday to me and a few other people and it was such a lovely memory to have.

As you’ll see below, the recurring theme throughout all my celebrations was everything pink!! I had a different pink dress for every occasion.

I’d actually been crying all morning before this meal, as it was the day Thomas Cook went into administration and we’d lost our flights to America for our dream road trip holiday. I remember forcing myself to stop crying so I could do my makeup for the meal, and cried as soon as we got into the taxi on the way home! Luckily we were able to re-book different flights, so we were still able to get away. But I really needed that meal that day, it really lifted my spirits.

For the girlie sleepover, I booked the James Bond Duplex Suite at the Signature Living Hotel on Stanley Street in Liverpool. It’s a party apartment that sleeps 14 people over 2 floors, has a kitchen and 2 huge bathrooms with jacuzzis. It was perfect for what I wanted.

I had the most amazing dress for this night, I’d bought it ages ago as it was just so me, I was obsessed!! It was from an online clothing boutique called Coco Boo Loves.

We started the night by going out for dinner at The Florist, Liverpool. I love going to The Florist as they do amazing food and cocktails, not to mention the venue is probably the most Instagrammable place in the whole of Merseyside!! We had a gorgeous meal and few drinks, got some amazing pics that I absolutely love, then headed back to the apartment for our PJ party.

We all ordered matching black personalised pyjamas from Jean Alice Robes, and I got pink ones to stand out – obviously. I love the Jean Alice brand so much, I get all my silk pjs from there and they’ve kindly given me a code that my followers can use to get discount off the products. Use code MRSE20 for 20% off full price orders.

Everything about the night was pink and flamingo themed, and I did almost everything myself.

I bought loads of pink and flamingo decorations from eBay and Amazon, and my big letter and ceiling balloons were done by Truly Sweet Candy. They’re a Liverpool based company who we used as one of our wedding suppliers and I couldn’t recommend them enough. Tracy is so lovely, I told her the theme I was going for and she made such an effort to theme the balloons around this. She came to the venue and set them all up for me, I was so happy with how they turned out.

I love doing a Pimp your Prosecco station, so had to have one at my 30th. I even got flamingo stirrers to match the theme! I made little flamingo themed party boxes for all the girls, filled with little treats for the night. Everything on the dessert table was pink, I did a pink sweet buffet and mini donut wall, and made the flamingo cake myself. I also ordered personalised sweet bags.

I had 3 cakes over the course of my birthday celebrations, perks of being a hobby baker! The first cake for my family meal was strawberries and cream themed, it was vanilla sponge with strawberry frosting.

The second cake for the meal at Opera Grill was pink gin, so I did raspberry sponge with gin and tonic flavour frosting, topped with lots of pink gin!

Then finally, for my girlie sleepover I did a flamingo themed cake with fresh roses, this was vanilla sponge with raspberry frosting.

I had such an amazing night with all my girls (and gbf!), we drank, ate, laughed and danced all night long to all my favourite songs that I’d put together on a playlist especially. It was the perfect way to bring my my UK celebrations to an end, and later that week we flew off our American road trip.

Our first stop was Vegas, and on our first full day there I turned 30. It was absolutely incredible to wake up on my 30th birthday in Las Vegas, it was a dream come true. Paul and I had the most gorgeous breakfast at Mon Ami Gabi at the Paris hotel, overlooking the Bellagio fountains. We then went and got some pink 30 balloons (of course!) and headed to the Vegas sign to get some pics. Of course I wore a tutu and a tee that said ‘Thirty AF’! Did you even go to Vegas if you didn’t get a pic with the sign?!

We hired a bed at the Garden of the Gods Neptune pool at Caesar’s Palace and it was so lovely to just relax in the sun and read all my lovely birthday messages. We stayed here all day drinking frose before we went back to the hotel room to get ready for our evening. Obviously I wore a bright pink bikini…

Paul had booked for us to have dinner at the Eiffel Tower restaurant, also at the Paris hotel and with the most incredible view of the Bellagio fountains at night. It was the most amazing meal I’ve ever had, and definitely the most romantic. Our table was semi circle shaped and meant that we both faced the floor to ceiling windows overlooking the strip. Having never been to Vegas before, it just felt so surreal and I felt so grateful to be there in that moment for my 30th birthday.

I had a gorgeous silk wrap dress for this night, with my amazing pink fluffy heels again.

To top off an absolutely unreal day, we went to watch Christina Aguilera at Planet Hollywood. I had loved Christina since I was a little girl, so to be able to see an idol of mine on my actual 30th birthday was a dream come true. I danced and sang my heart out until the very end, then we went straight to bed as we were SO jet lagged!! Paul actually fell fast sleep during Christina so you can tell how much he enjoyed it haha!!

A couple of days after my birthday, Paul had booked a helicopter ride over the Grand Canyon as one of my birthday presents. I’d never been in a helicopter before and it was absolutely incredible. We flew over the Hoover Dam and landed in the middle of the canyon for a champagne picnic. It was the best birthday present I could have ever asked for, and it was amazing to make such special memories.

I’ll never forget my 30th birthday and all the memories I made celebrating. I’m so grateful for everyone who made an effort to make it so special. My birthday this year will be completely different, and every birthday from now on. But with my 30th being so memorable, I’m happy to have a chilled birthday for the next 9 years…until my 40th of course!

On my birthday this year you’ll find me sipping mocktails on the beach feeling very grateful. I didn’t truly appreciate being able to do all of these things at the time, but with COVID taking celebrations like I had away from everyone, I will always feel grateful that I was able to have an amazing 30th and the holiday of my dreams.

Love Mrs E