I recently received a wonderful gift box from Ava Lola Orgnaics. To my surprise it wasn’t filled with gifts for the new baby, but gifts for me? I felt oh so special and I thought to myself it is just what a tired pregnant mumma needs – some mumma metime and pampering.
Inside this box of goodies was some great organic skin care products that were safe to use during pregnancy.
It is filled some brands and products I had heard of, however some new ones that I have now became a huge fan of. It’s was great to trial all the new brands, but I loved that you received the actual size samples of the products #winning.
I think it is such a great gift idea for any expecting mumma for her baby shower or a congratulations president, as the bubba seems to be the one that gets spoilt. You could simply just #treatyourself too haha. You totally deserve the luxe relaxing time fir yourself, especially because you are the one growing the bubba and that can take its toll on your mind and body.
Mama Body Tea Pregnancy OR Morning Wellness Tea 28 serves
Harvest Bliss Mama & Baby Milk Bath 100g
Tiny Tonics Stretch Mark Oil 125ml
Harvest Bliss Peppermint Foot Soak 30g
Harvest Bliss Milk Bath for Mumma and Baby and Peppermint Foot Soak Mama Body Tea Pregnancy Tea and Tiny Tonics Stretch Mark Oil
Below are some images of me using the products as I genuinely love trailing everything I am sent. I did use some of the products with Cruzie included in the relax/metime as sometimes it’s just how it is. While he played with his toys in the bath I would be relaxing my sore legs and bump. I loved sitting back relaxing and just enjoyed watching him learn new things. Multitasking right?
I highly recommend The Pregnancy Box to other expecting mummas, as I used every single one of the products provided in the box, I made sure of it. Haha. Can I get another? 🙋🏼
Thank you again for taking the time to read my review on such a gorgeous gift box. I look forward to purchasing these for my expecting mumma friends, as they all deserve a bit of pampering.
Let me set the scene. I am not one of the many ‘insta-fit-mums’ with the minimal body-fat, eight-pack and no cellulite. This is me. I am 30, pregnant with my second child and this is my pregnancy fitness journey. I will touch more on my pregnancy fitness with baby two (below).
Before I get into my journey I want to touch on something that is bothering me on this topic. I originally had intended this post to be about all the fitness options available for pregnant women, instead I began to feel (hormonally) overwhelmed by the key-board warriors ‘attacking’ mothers and mothers-to-be on social media because of their lack of education on the topic. I have the up-most respect for the ‘insta-fit-mums’. I admire their commitment to fitness, health and finding their new balance while pregnant and most of all I admire their strength when it comes to the ongoing (never ending) public criticism they receive about their pregnancy. Can anyone else see a common theme here…? THEIR. A pregnancy journey is exactly that. It is individual. Every woman and her body are different. Recently, I read with great disappointment an article in the Courier Mail on pregnancy ‘insta-fit-mum’ Chontel Duncan. I don’t know her at all, but I do understand her journey is hers and I don’t believe or see anything wrong with advocating for a healthy and fit Mum throughout her pregnancy. She did not say that a pregnant woman has to train like her but instead find a balance that is the right fit for THEIR pregnancy. Again that word their. Why is a woman’s pregnancy and her pregnancy fitness journey anybody else’s to comment on?
I recently saw another ‘insta-fit-mum’, Emily Skye announce her pregnancy on the social media platform to excitement from her followers to mixed criticism when she said she was off to do her ‘normal’ workout. The comments were ridiculous and uneducated. From one follower stating that pilates caused her to have a premature baby, to another stating to just walk because otherwise she will cause damage to her baby. I am baffled. Where has the education gone? Why are we still in a society where women are told to ‘sit and eat-for-two’. Why cant a woman train? with safe variations, like she was pre-pregnancy? I will leave you with that…
Here is my journey. I have had several people ask me how much weight I have put on because I look ‘small’ for my gestation. Question, what is the size of a pregnant belly at 32 weeks? Exactly that there is no perfect size. For me I have never really carried weight around my stomach and found that an easier area to keep toned so both times now my stomach is low, compact and tight. As for weight this is something I have debated about sharing and I have decided not to. Whilst I check-in on my weight, my midwife and OB never have.
So what do I do to maintain my health and fitness throughout pregnancy. To some it may seem like ‘too-much’, but this is MY journey and I am sharing it to help educate women that keeping up your fitness and health throughout pregnancy can and will benefit you. Besides the intensity and modifying exercises throughout each trimester I have ben doing reformer and mat pilates two to three times a week and F45 two to four times a week depending on how I am feeling. I also chase after a 12kg, nearly two year old and puppy who love long walks and park play.
Pilates is something I have always been passionate and addicted to especially as my recovery with Jack was relatively easy made thanks to this fitness revolution. This time I have a reformer at home making it convenient to exercise before Jack wakes without having to go anywhere. F45, especially as I have entered into my third trimester, has been a lifesaver. The motivation, support (physical and mental) the program provides me is exactly what I have needed, especially on the cooler winter mornings. I love doing a 5am workout, coming home and preparing things for the day and knowing my workout is done.
Mentally, emotionally and hormonally this is my fitness regime, that is supported and monitored with my OB and allied health professionals, which works well for me and my pregnancy.
So without professional fitness qualifications here are my TIPS for your Pregnancy and Post-Partum Journey.
Check out – You want real advice check out UB Mumma for professional health and fitness advice.
Don’t judge – don’t judge the ‘insta-fit-mums’ they are humans like you and me and not bulletproof.
Stop comparing – Don’t follow/stalk/screenshot/ postpartum fitness images and sites if it won’t benefit you. Guess what just like your pregnancy journey your post-partum journey is yours as well.
Jennifer Horner is an amazingly talented photographer from Brisbane. She shoots maternity, newborn, family & children and motherhood sessions. Jennifer is an incredibly gifted woman and I am so thankful that she was able to capture such a treasured moment in my life.
From the first email of contact, to the first moment I met Jennifer, she was extremely professional but so friendly to chat with. I found her very easy to connect with, (which is great when you are standing there just in your underwear in front of just her and the camera haha) and she made me feel welcome and relaxed in her studio.
After connecting with Jennifer via email, she sent out a questionnaire and information pack about the the maternity shoot for me to complete and send back. Asking a little bit about myself, how many children I had, my husband, the colours I loved and what I had in mind for the photoshoot and what she could offer. She was very happy to answer any questions or queries I had in the lead up to the shoot and was prompt with her replies. I thought this was a great way for Jennifer to get to know me before she meet me.
The morning of the photoshoot I had my hair and make up done by Suzie, owner of An Eye For Style and then headed straight to the studio for the shoot. When I arrived, Jennifer had the studio set up ready to go (it was beautiful, filled with lots hanging blooms from the ceiling and a great playlist of tunes in the background). She had all the gowns & kimonos colour coded and ready for me to start trying them on straight way. She also had other options not far to offer if need be as well. I felt extremely comfortable and had lots of laughs with Jen, as she prompted me into different positions as she would snapped away with her camera. Jen would quickly change the backdrop or scene while I slipped into the next outfit too. All very well organised. She would show some of the images on her camera to me throughout the shoot to which I loved.
My experience with Jen was exceptional, I would highly recommend her to my friends and family. She is not only creative and talented, but so welcoming and always making sure I was happy and comfortable throughout the whole experience.
So thank you Jen for capturing this precious memory of my bump. I look forward to one day gifting these images and sharing stories of my pregnancy with my children.
When I was pregnant with Cruz I struggled to find activewear for my growing bump and breasts haha. I shopped at a few of my favourite activewear stores and was sad that they didn’t provide for the pregnant mumma. They just offered the “bigger sizes” in the “looser styles” to me. Which was fine in some cases, but not always as sometimes the sizes wouldn’t fit my body shape. For example, to big in the the arms and but, or to tight round the belly, or to tight on the boobs. I felt that feeling comfortable and supported while being active, weaher it be HIIT, yoga or just walking it was an absolute must for me. I felt more motivated to move when I was putting on the activewear that fit correctly.
This time round I decided I was going to treat myself and just go out and get some proper maternity activewear to exercise in. Being a blogger I purchased some pieces for my maternity active wardrobe but I also collaborated with some amazing labels too.
I thought I would put together a list of some of the amazing maternity/breastfeeding active labels and pieces I have worn throughout this pregnancy.
These brands and pieces I have shared are just a few of my favourites. I think it’s fantastic that there is a market out there for staying active during pregnancy. It doesn’t matter what you are doing to move your body, it can be as simple as stretching or walking or as high impact as you like. All our bodies are different. We want the best for our growing bump, so do what you feel is right for your baby and your body.
I have walked every day of my pregnancy, trained at HIIT AUSTRALIA till 21 weeks, did yoga at home on you tube and tried a few pregnancy workout booklets, so I feel I have truly tested the Activewear to its limits. I am currently just walking, light weights and doing yoga at home at 36 weeks and I feel that is more than enough for my body now.
Thank you for reading. I hope you find the list helpful. Let me know your thoughts.
As bump and I moved into the third trimester my anxiety thinking about the birth started to increase. I know I totally got this, but when I laid there at night sometimes and start to think about the pain I was in during my labour with Cruzie. I spoke to my midwife about my concern and she said it’s very normal in the build up of a second birth to feel like this. Cruz was posterior so his spine on my spine so it was a lot of back pain and due to being on a monitor the whole labour I couldn’t travel far to walk it off. I stood next to the bed exhausted with the pain of contractions I was experiencing. However this is just a small part of my memory of the birth I was thinking about. My midwife told me that when these thoughts popped into my head to just think instantly of the moment of the relief I felt when they put my baby on my chest and told me I had a son. So that’s what I have been doing. I think it’s helped a lot.
I also voiced my concern with @themidwifemumma and we both decided that it was great to have her answer not only my questions about pregnancy and labour but my followers too. So last week @themidwifemumma took over my Instagram Story and spoke for an hour about some of our concerns. I wanted to say a huge thank you as she totally put my mind at ease. Feeling very blessed for that experience.
I would say my moods have been a little all over the place again. Feeling very excited about our new arrival but also been a little grumpy towards David at times too due to being tired. I also think that it’s because I’m pregnant and he isn’t haha. No seriously I do love the feeling of carrying out child and feeling those sweet baby kicks. David has been amazing too. So supportive and helpful at home. Overall I would say I have been mostly happy during these weeks. I feel very blessed to have a healthy toddler and a healthy Bub in my bump.
During this time I had my 30th and I turned 30 weeks on the same day. David, Cruz, Bump and I went to Sydney for a holiday, it was so nice to have a little family time together. I really enjoyed exploring and just hanging out with my boys.
I have still been thinking about the one on one time with Cruz too. How it will be limited. But I have been reassured by friends that as a family with more children you all just hang out together and your first child will adapt.
I am super excited to see Cruz as a big brother as he just loves other babies. He gives his new baby cousin lots of kisses and cuddles, it melts my heart.
Last week I received my new pram, I will soon be able to push my two babes around the streets. I am feeling very blessed to be a brand ambassador for the UPPABABY VISTA Double Pram. I am so in love with all its features and Cruz was so excited to hop in his new ride on our daily walks.
Due to my varicose veins I haven’t been doing to much high intensity exercise. I have been walking for 30-45 minutes most days. That’s a workout in it’s self with the pram up and down the hills.
I do 20-40 push ups on the kitchen bench about 5 days a week and some light dumb bell workouts.
To be honest I have been a little slack with the yoga too, only doing it once a week. Just not feeling it as much at the moment. I enjoy walking a little more than yoga and have been getting the same relaxation feels from just that.
I have been enjoying lots stretching. I find the legs in the air yoga pose helps with my achey back, legs and sore feet from veins. Hot magnesium baths have also help too.
I am now at the stage of pregnancy where I feel so hungry for my meal, but then I eat and I get the feeling of fullness after like 4-5 bites… WHY? I want to eat all the food haha! I have just been lots of eating light meals. Sipping on lots and lots of pregnancy tea as well. I love @mamabodytea.
Breakfast – Smoothie or Eggs and Spinach or Protein Pancake (more so on weekends).
Lunch – Some sort of protein (mostly tuna) with vegetables or salad, with sauerkraut on a quinoa wrap.
Dinner – Salmon or Fish with green vegetables.
I have also been making my healthy chocolate a bit a night, to to have a piece right before I go to bed. The recipe is on my Instagram here.
I have been wearing a lot of the same things over and over but I actually don’t mind. I don’t really want to buy anything else Maternity at I don’t have long left. I’m lucky that most of my purchases have been pregnancy and breastfeeding friendly. Still loving my $10 Kmart Tube Skirts with $7 T-shirts knotted, Maternity Tights with Jumper Dresses , Maternity Leggings and Boho Style Dresses. Oh and I live in my CONNIES! Ultimate comfort!
This months #bumpstyle shoot with my gorgeous friend Tahlia from @wyldefolkstudio was fun. We collaborated with my own wardrobe and Mamma Belle Maternity. I have also featured The Blushing Fox and Mama The Label. We need went out for a lovely morning tea with our babes. So nice having someone to collaborate with that I can call a good friend. Thank Tahlia for always being there.
So I made it to the 20 week mark, which means Morphology Scan Date! I always get so anxious, excited when I have hospital appointments and scans. I do about 3 nervous poos before and countless wees because I just want to know that Bub is healthy. I hadn’t really felt the baby move to much yet, just a few little fish bubbles randomly. So I was keen to see our little Bubbaroo.
The scan went well, it was about an hour and a half as the cheeky Bub kept on hiding their face. I cried again see the little one on screen, argh instant love. The Morphologist was surprised we wasn’t finding out the gender. It honestly does not bother me what we have, because as soon as I seen a dancing Bub on the screen I knew they looked healthy to me and i felt blessed. For David (my husband) it was a little harder. When the Morphologist told us to shut out eyes because she was going to scan the cheeky bits, David whispered to me “argh this is so hard I just want to peek’ hahaha! We both stayed strong though. It was also confirmed that I had an anterior placenta, hence why I hadn’t felt much movement. This all changed over the next four weeks though, I feel the baby doing jump flips and see their little feet kicking my ribs. Cheeky bubba. I think my bump looks very similar to my pregnancy with Cruz, maybe a little more wider.
I also met my Obstetrician at week 21. He was fantastic. We are going public, everyone has been amazing and so informative so far. He confirmed the scan all went well which was reassuring. I have really bad varicose veins in my legs and down below, so its compression stockings and sexy high knickers for me… Wootwooo isn’t pregnancy glam hahaha. I just have to monitor for DVTs as a few of my veins have erupted in my legs. I hope it doesn’t erupt down below because, hey that will not be pretty. He also stated it was time for me to stop training at HIIT Australia because of the force on my girly bits with the veins. I was pretty sad about this as I love the feeling of hitting the gym and the me time, but safety first always for the Bub.
I am super excited that I have a student midwife too. I had one with Cruzie and I just loved seeing the same familiar face at appointments and at the birth. So pleased.
During these weeks, was when I started to think about my labour, will it be the same as Cruz? Can I do this again? I knew what I was in for this time? I started to work myself up a little bit with fear. So I have been doing some meditation, to help ease those normal thoughts that most woman go through. The meditation has helped lot to keep my labour anxiety at bay and prepare my body for change. I have been using the Mind The Bump App which ideal for pregnancy. Plus I get to met my little bub at the end of the labour so its a huge positive.
We had lots of sleep troubles with our Cruzie, so there was a week there where I felt emotionally drained from the lack of sleep, I cried a lot, but I think even if I was not pregnant I would still of been upset, maybe just not as much.
The mind/body issues have died down a lot, in fact I have found a new love for my bod. I feel good with this bump on show. I have been really practicing my self love skills, I have so much respect for my ever changing body. I am enjoying when people point out the bump too as I find this is a gentle reminder to my self, that I am pregnant. I get so busy looking after Cruzie that I forget that I am pregnant sometimes. The time is flying by so fast. Crazy to think I am well over half way now. Having the scan though has made me more emotionally aware that I have a little Bubba coming. I feel more emotionally connected to the little one now I have seen Bub. Especially when it reminds me that its in there with all those jump flips and sweet baby kicks.
I feel that I am building that emotional connection with David again, it makes me smile watching him with Cruz, hearing them both giggle while they play and hang out. I am so grateful that soon I will get to hear another little voice in the house that I can listen out for and smile about. David has been truly so helpful and supportive with all the hormontionals that have come with this pregnancy, I feel very lucky, my heart is full.
So I have my full appetite back. My cravings have been sauerkraut (by the jar), organic eggs, spinach leaves and white fish. David and I have been studying a lot about “gut health” so as for meals, we have all been eating the same in this house. Lots of veggies, good fats, white fish, salmon, fermented veggies, sweet potato and organic eggs. Due to my varicose veins I have also been taking Vitamin C Powder (lots of it) and drinking so much water. I haven’t really craved sugary things at all, since the first trimester so I guess thats a positive.
Well as I stated earlier, I had to stop training at HIIT Australia. My back has been sore and so have my feet from my veins. I have been walking for 30-60minutes daily. I have one day off a week from that. I really love walking, I find that the walking really helps to kick start my day and its great for the circulation in my legs too.
I am continuing my prenatal yoga about 4 times a week which I LOVE. I am still loving the Energising Flow with Tammy on youtube. I wear my maternity yoga pants from Krew Active every time to feel like a right YOGI haha. The light workout really stretches out my achy body and I feel like it keeps some tone to my body with the holding of the stretches.
I also love to do push ups fro extra support on the bench, I try do this every night. I also do 10 squats in the shower morning and night. I do my pelvic exercises right before ved at night (I do forget these alot though ekkk).
Well if I am not in my yoga pants or my underwear at home (because its so hot, QLD please cool down), I am loving Boho flowly dresses and I am also loving rocking a firmer dress/tube skirt to show off the bump. I have found some great maternity/breastfeeding styles for daily wear from Mamma Belle Maternity, The Self Styler, Amor + Grace, and also just fromTarget, Kmart. I love that you can buy styles now that can be worn post birth too.
This months #bumpstyle shoot with Tahlia from @wyldefolkstudio_ was such a laugh. Thank you again Tahlia for the collaboration every month, I am so grateful for your talent. If you would like to collaborate with Tahlia in the future, you can contact her on her email found in her bio on her Instagram page here.
We had such a fun time, styling this big ever growing bump of mine. We found a great location outside by the water, to do the shoot. I hope you enjoy the bump style photos. Will tag the labels I wore in the comments.
Thank you so much for tuning in and reading. I am forever grateful for your love, comments, support. Thanks a million to all involved in making this blog happen, I am truly enjoying sharing this journey with you.
Always value your feedback too, so feel free to share your thoughts on the blog or on my instagram page here @aliceinhealthyland.
Week 16, wow this was where a lot of things changed for me. I had just learnt the news of some friends that were going through the pain of having a still born. She was nearly in her third trimester. Three days later I read that a Insta mum and her family I follow was going through the same heart ache. I was heartbroken too truly grieved for both of them and then for all the other mums that go through this everyday. Being a nurse I had looked after a few mummas that had gone through this too in the past and remembering their heart ache too. So after hearing this news, so many things went through my head that week. I almost had this feeling of guilt that my baby was healthy and they had lost their little angels to heaven. It was a huge turn around for me. I practised gratefulness everyday for not just my baby but for my ever changing body and respected its changes its has to go through physically and mentally. Yes I still have times looking in the mirror where I think … geeze my but is flattening and widening, and negative talk starts to crepe in, but I do try and take a breathe and remember how lucky I am to have this pregnancy and that I have a healthy little toddler too.
To help keep my mindset at peace I have had beautiful friend that is also pregnant (yay I can now announce to the world) Lauren, to share this pregnancy journey with. Lauren from @hunterandrose_lifestyle also has a little boy around the same age as Cruz, Jack and is just 4 weeks behind me. So we can relate. I am also blessed to have my beautiful friend Tania @narurally_nourished87, she has been so supportive with this pregnancy and has been so great at helping my body feel good with the right supplementation and nutritional advice.I have learnt so much from her. I am grateful to have these girls and all my friends and family in my life. I love to surround myself with people that help support and lift you higher and hopefully give that back to them too.
I have been practising yoga for some for mindfulness and I have just added meditation to my daily routine instead of just breathing exercises. Wow this has opened up a whole new world for me. I’m loving it. I have been using Headspace The App and Mind The Bump The App to guide me. Thank you to all my Instagram followers for suggesting these apps, I have been loving them. I feel I am a much happier person during this crazy hormontional journey we call preganacy and I am handling my wild emotions much better.
My sex drive is back in full swing (yay for David) (sorry to my family who are reading this hahaha) so I feel closer to Dave again and not so distant like in first few weeks of pregnancy.He reminds me all the time we are on this journey together. I guess all this sex makes up for my grumpiness in the first trimester right babe?
Also little Cruzie makes me smile every single day and I feel thankful (maybe not in the at midnight wake ups) that I am having another little brother or sister for him to play with.
If you are going through emotional times in your pregnancy, talk to someone and then try breathe and let it go. You are not alone and others go through it to just some more that others. If you can’t just let it go try and speak to your midwife or gp for other support options.
Walking, walking and more walking I love my walking. I have had lots of energy so I have been training weights at HIIT Australia 2-3 times a week. I am loving my PT with the gorgeous Miss Hannah Dales too, she is helping me keep that booty is the best shape it can be hahaha ( its still going down south but hey we are doing our best). Yoga has been my absolute love and go to though. I will share the youtube at home pregnancy yoga practices I have been doing with you because I LOVE them. They are around 30-40minutes and I fit them in when Cruz sleeps at night or nap time (or he ends up on my mat trying to copy me, it is cute though).
This is my absolute favourite practice so far. I do this one 2-3 times a week. I truly feel so energised after it and I try and do my meditation just after it. Highly recommend. It also made me get some relief for my varicose vein pain in my legs as this practice does lots of leg stretching and movements to enhance circulation.
Yes well the Nutella cravings have completely gone thank god! Its all about the peanut butter and the sauerkraut now. I always love peanut butter though so maybe this is nothing new for me. My appetite has defiantly come back though! Loving lots of brown rice, sweet potato chips, greens, sauerkraut and white fish for lunch. For breakie is just a mixture of oats, protein pancakes or eggs on rye with sauerkraut. Believe me though I am hunnnnnngry all the time hahaha #allthefood. I was tested for a early gestational diabetes as my fasting blood sugar was slightly higher than normal but it all came back clear so I had to watch the carbs a little! Yippeeee now I can have all the carbs in the world haha! I do have to have one more test though when I am 28 weeks to make sure though!
Styling this bump over these few weeks has been a little challenging as its growing at a much faster rate. My non maternity clothes are super tight and uncomfortable especially in the heat here in QLD. My pre pregnancy pyjamas are not even going to fit my leg and my underwear is riding up my bum. So its comfy maternity clothing and Boho smock styles from now on.