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Showing posts with label Pregnancy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pregnancy. Show all posts

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Kind Mama & Baby Essentials - My Guest Post on Alicia Silverstone's blog


38 weeks pregnant

For the second time, a big thank you to Alicia Silverstone for posting my guest post on her blog The Kind Life. My last guest post talked about my experience of pregnancy and Alicia's latest book The Kind Mama,  this new post is about preparing for mamahood with a list of planet and budget friendly baby essentials. Below is the post from The Kind Life, and here is the link to it. 


"In my last post here on The Kind Life I talked about how Alicia’s new book The Kind Mama helped me create my own baby essentials list, cutting out the stuff that just goes to empty our wallets and produce more waste. Several of you kind lifers said you’d be interested in me sharing the list, I am really grateful for your interest and am very happy do so!
I am pregnant with our first baby, this is a new adventure for my man and I, and I am sure it will be a learn-as-we-go process, so just to say this is very much a tentative list and we may find in hindsight we’d do it all completely differently, and that’s ok. This list is based on advice from friends and family, my own extensive research, and information from Alicia’s book The Kind Mama. Pregnancy and parenting are all about following our instincts and making choices that feel right to us – this is our list, it may not be right for anyone else, but if along the way this post inspires you to find just one or more ways in which you might like to make your parenting style more environmentally-friendly, then you’ve made my day :)
The green baby and mum essentials
Remember you can get almost all of these items second hand through friends or the internet!
For mum
-       Breastfeeding essentials: 1) a couple of maternity bras and tank tops, 2) a light cotton breastfeeding blanket for times when you might want a little privacy, 3) cloth nursing pads, 4) an electric breast pump, 5) a few BPA-free anti-colic system glass baby bottles and 6) small glass mason jars to store your milk without using plastic bags.
-       Food, food, wonderful food! : Pre-prepared healthy vegan snacks and frozen meals so you don’t need to worry about cooking in those first days after baby arrives, have some healthy snacks in your hospital bag as well. The Kind Mama has a whole section full of healthy yummy recipes to inspire you, and then of course there’s The Kind Life recipe book as well that I love!
For baby
-       Cloth diapers: This is the option we’re going for, from the research I’ve done I’m tempted to go with those that fasten with snaps and have more coverage than the ones with inserts. Alicia suggests some good eco-friendly brands in The Kind Mama. What are your suggestions kind lifer mums?
-       Burp cloths .. a lot of them: They don’t need to be purpose-marketed or even new, you can even make these yourself easily by re-using old cotton clothing items or handkerchiefs.
-       Baby clothes: The top 4 golden rules: 1) go for cotton and natural fabrics, 2) don’t get too many as you won’t need as much as you think, 3) avoid newborn sized clothes as they will often be too small from day 1 or be outgrown in no time and, last but not least, 4) second hand is best – charity shops are full of nearly new baby clothes and friends and family will be all too happy to give you their hand-me-downs!
-       Baby skin products: baby wipes are not only expensive and polluting but will often give babies skin rashes because of the nasty ingredients these contain – the same goes for other baby skin products, the fewer unpronounceable ingredients the better. Alicia has some good recommendations in The Kind Mamaon how to avoid and treat skin irritations using natural products and even breast milk! Once baby’s big enough for soap, Dr Broner’s Baby Mild Castille Soap is apparently a good green option.
-       Baby’s pharmacy kit: 1) the baby nose cleaner, I hear the aspirator one works better than the bulb syringe one, 2) a soft ended baby thermometer, 3) a pair of small round edged nail scissors, 4) homeopathic remedies
-       Getting out and about – Strollers, carriers and car seats: there are enough options out there to make anyone go insane trying to pick one! There is no single perfect answer that works for everyone’s needs so go with what feels best for you and your baby, remembering there will no doubt be a good second hand option out there for what you need. We love the idea of baby wearing, there are many carrier options out there, ideally try them out once you’re baby is born to see what works best for you and your partner. As for strollers, our main decision has been to not get overwhelmed into buying a top-of-the-range-massive-fancy-all-in-one-spaceship-like stroller, we’re not planning on taking our baby to the moon! For car seats the most important factor is safety, so if you get one second hand make absolutely sure that it’s never been in any accident before, check online that the model has not been recalled and don’t get one that’s older than about 5 years.
-       Sleeping: We aim to try co-sleeping at least for the first few months. The Kind Mama is a great source of information about co-sleeping. We’d like to simply have baby in bed with us but we move around a lot and can’t be sure to always have a safe bed for co-sleeping so we’re planning to get the mini arm’s reach co-sleeper. Another good option for frequent travellers, especially those going to places with mosquitoes as we do, is the Samsonite popup bubble, for babies up to 18 months, it weighs about 5lbs and is great value for money.
There you have it, our attempt at having a kinder, less overwhelming baby essentials list, and minimising the clutter! Hopefully I haven’t forgotten anything too important, and if I have please let me know, I would love if you fellow kind lifers, especially those of you who are already parents, would share your thoughts, input and advice on what you think of this list and your tips on how to be an eco-friendly parent!
Kate xx


Thank you Kate!! You will find your list worked out just right. We loved using snap diapers and would place the cloth inside (we never used inserts – since the whole thing will get wet anyways.) We also didn’t stick with velcro, Bear was a Houdini and could pull it off. To help keep your little one’s bum clean without filling up landfills with wipes or their skin with chemicals, use cloth such as organic cotton or repurposed t-shirts and keep a spray bottle filled with water next to the toilet. After 3 months you can mix in mild essential oils like chamomile and lavender. One of my favorite baby carriers is the Ergo organic baby carrier. Thanks again Kate! "

Thanks Alicia!


Sunday, 22 June 2014

The 3rd Trimester Begins, and Brown Rice Pudding Recipe!


Serves 4
Preparation time: active time 10 min + 40 min cooking


Hello people, it's been a while since my last recipe post, and surprise surprise, once more it is in the breakfast/dessert category, my favorite! 

Before I go on to that though, here's a quick update on all things pregnancy - I have just started my 3rd trimester, pretty exciting! I'm still feeling great, but have definitely slowed down a notch, baby bump is getting bigger by the day it seems, I find myself rolling around like a beached whale making grunting sounds whenever I try to get off a sofa or bed, to my partner's great amusement,  and I have a little less energy now. The third trimester is when baby starts putting on fat and goes through an impressive growth spurt, so it's more important than ever to be eating well, and enough, increasing daily caloric intake by about 300 kcal. A valid excuse to eat more? Sounds good to me! Which brings us to today's recipe..


This brown rice pudding is a perfect comfort dish for breakfast, dessert or snack. Creamy, sweet and healthy, it's a great way to use up left over cooked brown rice. You can play around with this recipe anyway you want to, making it more of a decadent dessert by adding chocolate chips, or a healthy breakfast, with different dried fruits and nuts and even perhaps omitting the cocoa powder. It's up to you, any which way you go, it's bound to be delicious!

Ingredients
3 cups of cooked brown rice
8 oz/225gr of tofu
1 ½ cups of non-dairy milk (I used hazelnut)
½ cup maple syrup or other liquid sweetener*
½ tsp cinnamon + extra for sprinkling
½ tsp nutmeg
2 tsp vanilla essence
2 T cocoa powder
optional: chopped dates, raisins, nuts, chocolate chips (I used dates & almonds)


* For a low calorie version use a sugar free liquid sweetener, there are even maple-flavored ones out there.

Preparation
Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C.

In a food blender combine the cooked rice, the tofu and the rice milk. Add the maple syrup, cocoa powder, nutmeg, vanilla and cinnamon. Lightly oil a baking dish and pour the mix into it. Sprinkle the dried fruits, nuts or chocolate chips, depending what you are using,  on top and press them down lightly with a spoon. Sprinkle with a little more cinnamon and place in the oven. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until browned on top and bubbly. Serve warm, with extra non-dairy milk or even cream if you like. 

Thursday, 5 June 2014

My guest post on Alicia Silverstone's The Kind Life blog



Fun news for Ohlalavegan today, I have a guest post on Alicia Silverstone's blog! A few days ago I was surprised to receive an email from Alicia's website community manager asking me to write a short piece on my experience of being pregnant and on my thoughts of Alicia Silverstone's new book The Kind Mama, which I mentioned in a recent post. Needless to say I was only too happy to do so, I love both Alicia's books - The Kind Diet and The Kind Mama - and her website The Kind Life and am super happy to be asked for this opportunity to contribute to it!

For those of you who don't know The Kind Life, it's a great place to find inspiration and articles about all things vegan, from recipes to animal issues to living green. Click here for the link to my piece on pregnancy and The Kind Mama. 

Thanks Alicia!

:)


Friday, 16 May 2014

Chocolate Fudge Pie and 5 1/2 month pregnancy update

Serves: 6-8
Preparation time: 20 minutes + 30 minutes to chill


Delicious, luxurious chocolate fudge pie that is truly - forgive the pun - easy-as-pie to make and with none of the added nasty stuff you'll find in the store bought versions. It's actually as healthy as a chocolate fudge pie can decently allow itself to be, and of course cruelty free!


Directions

The filling
12 oz / 340gr of silken tofu
2 T non-dairy milk of choice
9 oz / 250gr of non-dairy chocolate
3 T of liquid sweetener (I used maple syrup)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp vanilla extract


The pie crust
7oz / 200gr of digestive biscuits* (check they are vegan)
3 T liquid sweetener (I used maple syrup)
3 T coconut oil

* For more decadence you can replace with oreo cookies 


Preparation

Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400°F. Process the biscuits until completely ground, then add the coconut oil and liquid sweetener and process until fully combined. Fold out the pie crust mix into a pie dish, pressing down to even out the surface. Cook in the oven for 5-10 minutes, or until lightly golden. Remove and let cool completely.

Melt the chocolate and blend all the filling ingredients together in a blender until smooth. Pour the filling into the pie crust and place in the fridge until chilled. The longer you leave it in the fridge the firmer the filling will be. 

Below is a photo of me, after eating the whole chocolate fudge pie all to myself. Juuust kidding, that's baby bump, now 5 and a half months on :) 


I'm happy to say that my second trimester of pregnancy is a dream, no nasty symptoms, loads of energy and the excitement of now being able to feel baby move more and more each week. Now that I have a proper bump - finally - and can feel baby kick, it seems much more real to me that I am going to be a mum soon, and that's really exciting! 

I've got a new book to add to my recommended pregnancy/parenting reading list - Alicia Silverstone's The Kind Mama, a controversial and in my view an empowering and fact-full book based on attachment parenting, trusting one's self as a parent, getting and staying healthy throughout pregnancy and beyond and being kind to the planet. 

More pregnancy updates and recipes to come soon. In the meantime, enjoy that pie!


Friday, 18 April 2014

Keeping fit with a bun in the oven!

Being physically active throughout pregnancy is highly recommended and has great health benefits for both mum and baby, promotes better pregnancy outcomes and shorter labors. I've been aiming (not always successfully) to work out at least 3 times a week, combining a variety of different types of exercise. If you're pregnant, seek advice from your doctor or midwife about what exercises are adapted and appropriate for you. 

Below are some of my favorite prenatal workouts with links to free online classes. I get bored if I do the same thing over and over again, so I try and change it up between yoga, pilates, toning classes and walking. 


Yoga

I love the website doyogawithme, it has a wide selection of free yoga videos, of all types and levels and they have a few prenatal yoga videos too. I particularly enjoy Fiji McAlpine's classes, which I did regularly before I was pregnant. She has a great prenatal power flow video for women in their first and second trimesters of pregnancy, I sometimes find prenatal yoga videos a little too easy and slow, Fiji's class is more dynamic and leaves me feeling both relaxed and like I've done a proper workout.

Click here for Fiji's free online prenatal yoga class. 

Another free online prenatal yoga video I love, which is more adapted for third trimester of pregnancy of for women who haven't practised yoga before, is Sarah Kamrath's prenatal kundalini yoga.




Walking

Living in Myanmar in 40°C heat, with polluted busy roads and potholed or non-existant sidewalks doesn't make for very pleasurable walks, but now that I'm back in Europe on holiday I'm loving going for walks by the lake, into town or up in the mountains. 

Walking is a great form of prenatal exercise as it can be safely maintained throughout the whole 9 months of pregnancy, you can adapt the length and intensity of your walks to suit your level of fitness, walking can get your heart rate up, you don't need any expensive equipment and you can go for a walk wherever and whenever suits you. Make sure you wear comfortable supportive shoes to protect your back and knees. 

Pilates

Similar to yoga, prenatal pilates is great to increase strength, for relaxation and stretching. Try the 10 minute solution prenatal pilates classes free on youtube. You can do all of them together for a 50 minute workout or separate them out, depending on how much time and energy you have. 

Part 1 - standing pilates



Part 2 - core pilates



Part 3 - pilates for buns and thighs



Part 4 - total body pilates



Part 5 - pilates for flexibility



Classes

Find out what classes are available in your area and make sure that your instructor knows you are pregnant and has received proper training to do classes with pregnant women. I do toning classes twice a week, they're great for muscle strengthening and stamina building and can easily be adapted for pregnancy. 

Tips for exercising safely during pregnancy

From what I've read and seen online these are the main recommendations for safe exercise during pregnancy:

- Ask your doctor or midwife for advice
- Don't take up new and intense forms of exercise during pregnancy, such as running, if you were not already doing these prior to being pregnant
- Avoid exercises where you have to lie flat on your back as the weight from your growing uterus will put pressure on the vein that brings blood and oxygen to your baby and can lead to dizziness
- Listen to your body and don't measure your performance against what you were able to do before you were pregnant, pregnancy is a time to stay healthy and fit, but not a time to push yourself too far. 
- And most of all... Enjoy it :)

Friday, 21 March 2014

My Pregnancy Breakfast Saviors


Growing a baby is a big deal, and it's given me a monster appetite! I don't want this to mean that I just go crazy and throw healthy eating out the window. So what do I eat now that I’m pregnant? 

I’ll be honest with you, for the first 2 months despite all my determination and promises to self about how I was going to be a superhealthy superpregnantwoman and exercise every day, I mostly sat in my PJs in front of House of Cards feeling sorry for my nauseous self, sending my impressively-patient other half out to the corner shop for endless supplies of oreo cookies to munch on between 2 bowls of muesli. And exercise? Forget it, I wasn’t even feeling up for cooking, no way was I going to be in the mood for lunges and sun salutations.

Thankfully, since the start of the second trimester I have been feeling much more energetic and back on track, cooking, eating well and exercising.

This post is about my favorite and most important meal of the day - breakfast.


My ritual when I wake up is to make myself a warm lemon drink. Squeeze ½ a lemon in warm water, this helps to get the digestive system started, clears out toxins and boosts the immune system.



Breakfast fav n°1 - Chocolate banana ice cream

Yes, ice cream for breakfast.



This is inspired by a recipe on Ashley’s Green Life blog and I love it, this is healthy food disguised in decadence, my kind of food! I add oats, nuts and seeds to Ashley’s version to make it more filling and tick the whole grain box.

Ingredients
1 frozen banana
4 frozen strawberries (you could also use other frozen berries)
½ cup almond milk, or other non-dairy milk
1 tsp ground flaxseed
½ T flaked almonds
½ T sunflower seeds
½  T of raw or unsweetened cocoa powder

Preparation
Blend all ingredients until smooth and drink up!



Breakfast fav n°2 - 2 Minute Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

What else. Through thick and thin I stay loyal to my love of porridge.


Ingredients
3/4 cup rolled oats
1 date
sprinkle of cinnamon
diced apple (stewed or fresh)
1 tsp maple syrup
½ T flaked almonds or other nuts
½ T sunflower seeds or other seeds
1 tsp ground flaxseed (for Omega 3s)
boiling water

Preparation
Easy. Put all the ingredients, except the boiling water, together in a bowl (if you are using stewed rather than fresh apples add these in at the end). Pour in enough boiling water to just cover the oats. Cover with a plate to let it cook and absorb most of the water, stirring a couple of times. Remove the plate and enjoy.



Tuesday, 18 March 2014

My first pregnancy, being healthy, staying SANE


For once I have a good reason for completely neglecting Ohlala for months..  

I’m 14 weeks PREGNANT with our first child! 
(pause for a little celebratory dance)


We found out on the 31st December - in the morning luckily, sparing future baby from being exposed to alarmingly high units of alcohol that night.. -  in the middle of the most wonderful Christmas family holiday in Canada, 10 days after getting engaged. My boyfriend/fianc√© proposed on a candle-lit ice rink in good Canadian fashion, and once I said yes he gave me my first ice hockey lesson! 

I’ve been pretty lucky with morning sickness and nausea, and certainly didn’t lose my appetite (I blame people who keep telling me ‘Oh it’s fine, you’re eating for two!’ for all the perhaps-not-completely-justifiable-weight I’ve put on already). We weren't, however, spared all the crazy stressful thoughts that no one warns you are going to creep up, scratch that, more like ERUPT in your mind suddenly with no warning, such as :

‘OH MY GOD, we don’t even have a savings account!’ 

or, because we are different nationalities and have been living and working all other the place

‘Where on earth are we going to give birth/live/move to/find work/get visas for!?!’ 

Help. 

But in my mother’s infinite words of wisdom - 

Oh whateeeever, it’s a baby, you’ll figure it out!’ 

And of course she’s right.

I’ve searched the web for resources on vegan pregnancy and parenting and have found a few great sites and blogs, but not so many. So, I thought, why not get back to blogging and make Ohlalavegan a space to share the good the bad and the ugly about being pregnant and vegan (although I promise there will be no sight of any potential future bloated feet, cellulite and stretch marks.. so not that kind of ugly).

Vegan, pregnant and healthy..  3 words that go together just fine.

When we told people we wanted a baby or that we are now pregnant we got a lot of: 

‘Ok, so are you going to stay vegan now that your pregnant? What about iron/calcium/B12 etc?’ 

I knew these valid and well meant concerns would be coming our way, and to be honest even though I 100% believed from the start that being vegan, pregnant and perfectly healthy was possible, I wanted to be properly informed, to respond to both other people’s concerns and for my own peace of mind. I’ve read books, blogs, websites, articles etc – some of which are listed at the end of this blog – and here is the conclusion I have reached based on all this:

YES! You can be an animal-loving, tree-hugging, tofu-munching perfectly healthy pregnant woman growing a perfectly healthy human being. Hurray.

I won't bore you with an overload of information, facts and figures about nutritional needs in pregnancy and how these can be met through a vegan diet. What I will say is that if a balanced plant-based diet is not only a healthy and sustainable diet that gives our bodies and minds everything they need in terms of macro and micro nutrients, but also helps prevent and fight off nasty diseases  (check out research by Dr. Neal Barnard, T. Colin Campbell, Dr John MacDougall), then why-oh-why would it suddenly not be right for pregnant women? 

Of course, all pregnant women, whatever their diet, need to pay close attention to their nutritional intake, and iron deficiency in particular is something to watch out. The truth is, you can get everything you need on a vegan diet when pregnant. Yes, you need to put thought and care into what you eat - same as for non-vegans, but no, you won’t need to spend the whole day stuffing your face full of seaweed (thank God) and counting micrograms of everything you eat. 

I recommend Holly Roberts’ ‘Your Vegetarian Pregnancy’ for a useful breakdown of how you can meet these guidelines in pregnancy on a vegan diet.

And most importantly for me, I find it inspiring to be growing a new life without taking life away from any other being in the process.

take a pregnancy supplement (a safety net if you find yourself running to the bathroom every time someone so much as utters the word vegetable), folic acid, and continue to take a daily B12 supplement. I make sure to get omega 3 fatty acids by having ground flax seed everyday in porridge or smoothies and walnut oil in salads. Keep in mind that there are different types of Omega 3 fatty acids, and that these foods contain only ALA fatty acids, which can be transformed by our bodies into EPA and DHA (which are otherwise found almost exclusively in fish) but it is unclear whether our bodies can convert ALA to EPA and DHA in sufficient quantities. EPA and DHA are important for fetus brain and eye development and functioning, so it is safer to take a vegan DHA supplement as well, made from micro-algae. 

And then there’s the big question ... how to deal with other people?!

I have to say I’ve been very fortunate, my family and friends have been nothing but supportive and loving, and apart from the occasional -

‘And you are taking your B12 and folic acid dear?’

I have not had to face any disapproval about my diet, I think mainly because it’s been a few years now since I’ve been vegan and my loved ones know to trust that I take my health and diet seriously. That and the fact that they are down-to-earth open minded people.

I have however faced this in the past, when I first became a vegan. It wasn’t easy, but I tried to remember that if people raised concerns and worried its because they care about me, and in some rarer cases because people feel defensive and protective of their own way of living, and may interpret someone just being vegan as a criticism of that. However difficult this may be, the solutions are pretty simple really, there are 2 things you can do:

1.     Be informed so that you can answer their questions and concerns in a patient and understanding way, which will hopefully reassure them that you have looked into this seriously and know what you are talking about.

2.    If solution number 1 does not work, ignore them, you’re going to be a parent so this is just the beginning of unsolicited advice and concern, we might as well start learning how to not let ourselves be driven crazy by it now!


Support, inspiration & staying sane:  family, friendships and stories shared

I have found inspiration, information and support from my family and friends, especially the women around me.

Whether or not they have kids themselves, the people who love me and know me best are those who can find the right words to remind me how to stay sane through this amazing but also often exhausting, confusing, emotionally and physically draining time. 

I don’t think I realised until I became pregnant how much I would count on their support and presence through this adventure. I am used to being independent, I’ve worked lived and travelled all over the place, and am usually at least two continents away from them, so I was not expecting to feel such a terrifically strong urge to nest, to be home in familiar surroundings, with people I’ve known and loved all of my life. Living in Myanmar (Burma) and not seeing them has been, and continues to be, tough, but I’ve realised being far doesn’t mean to say we can’t be present for each other. 

As for those amazing friends who are already parents, it’s been such an absolute relief to talk to them, to admit to the hard things I wasn’t expecting about pregnancy and to hear them laugh kindly and say 

That is completely normal!’

followed by the comfort of friends sharing their stories, turning what seemed like mountain-sized challenges that I was facing alone into almost friendly-looking hills that so many of us have and will overcome. There are these stories that remind me I am not alone and this is just a temporary challenge, and there are the stories that give me perspective, and remind me how incredibly fortunate I am, like when my Gran wrote to me the other day in response to a long whiny email from me complaining about nausea, saying something along the lines of:

My dear Kate, so sorry to hear that, must be awful for you. Find consolation in the fact that in this day and age you do not have a dragon of a mother in law who is forcing you to wear a corset to hide your bump like I did!’

That made me both laugh and reflect, reflect on the fact that my gran is, like so so many other women around me, resilient as hell, and turns painful experiences into tales of joviality and strength. 

This is exactly what another friend of mine, who has just given birth herself, was trying to say when the other day she sent me a picture of the inside of a kaleidoscope, as a message that by changing the way we look at things, what we see and experience is transformed. In her words:

‘Sending you a kaleidoscope, an imaginative super practical tool to see things, the same things, from different perspectives, as you wish, with just moving thoughts, and looking to the light.’


Beautiful.

All of these stories, which are essentially shared between women, have made one thing very clear to me:


Women are incredibly strong, and solidarity and support between us is one of the most incredible, dependable and precious things in our lives.


Overall being pregnant is, I realise now, an opportunity for me to reflect on what is important to me, whether that’s being vegan - as a way of being kinder to myself and the world – or on the bonds we have with others and our shared yet unique experiences as women. 

It has also opened my eyes to what is probably the first and most important lesson I will learn as a future parent: I can’t control everything, GASP, WAVE HANDS FRANTICALLY IN THE AIR, now calm down. Pregnancy has made that quite clear as it has brought its lot of surprises and emotions along, many of them conflicting with my previous expectations and idealisations of what pregnancy should look and feel like (ie me looking like a glowing levitating goddess in lotus position drinking a homemade green smoothie, looking exactly like my pre-pregnancy self but way better, and with what looks like a watermelon neatly tucked under my shirt).

As another friend of mine and mum of two said to me:

 ‘Everything in pregnancy and parenting is a phase, it always passes, and is always replaced by something new’

And isn’t that a beautiful concept. 

An opportunity to let go, relinquish control and know that not only will things always change and evolve, but that if we just trust in ourselves and life, and decide to look at these moments the right way through our mental kaleidoscope, then each of these moments and changes can be full of learning and appreciation.

Note to self: I may come back and violently scratch this last sentence out many many times over the next few months, years, decades when I’m faced with actually getting a baby OUT of me, or with a baby/toddler/teenager who won’t stop screaming its lungs out, but for now I’ll focus on being my positive self and remain blissfully oblivious to all that (just like that idealised version of pregnant me floating in lotus position sipping a green smoothie).

And to be honest I am - perhaps naively - looking forward to every minute of all of it.


For other sources of information and inspiration, there are some great books, blogs and websites out there, here are some of my favorites:  

-       Ina May Gaskin, ‘Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth’ 
a beautiful awesome informative book about natural childbirth, written by an amazing woman and midwife

-         Holly Roberts, ‘My vegetarian Pregnancy’

-       Ashley’s Green Life blog: www.ashleysgreenlife.com 
A great blog about how to be green, including through pregnancy and parenting.

-         Rebecca Woolf at Girl’s Gone Child: www.girlsgonechild.net 
This is a blog about parenting more than pregnancy or veganism, but I find it’s great to get a sense of what might come after these 9 months!