Pregnancy Update – Week 10

(Another entry from my ‘hidden’ pregnancy diary…) This week we said our farewells to the USA, returning home to the “real world”. I suspect today will be a long day back at work after having spent the last month travelling!! How far along? 10 weeks 4 days How big is baby? This week baby BBB has grown to the size of a …. prune?! Hmmm, not the prettiest size comparison that’s for sure! week10 How I’m feeling? This week I seemed to go from moments of disbelief that I am pregnant, to incredible excitement, with constant thoughts of how much I cant wait to share our exciting news with family and friends (in due course!. I did have one total emotional tantrum moment as I uncomfortably squirmed my way through the 14 hour flight back to Australia.  I am blaming pregnancy hormones, and the tiny economy middle seat 😉   IMG_2059  Weight? So on our return from holidays, I am up +2.8kg on the scale. A shock for me to see, but not all that surprising really given the lack of exercise and the "no lack" of food throughout our holiday. How I’m changing? My lower abdomen is starting to look very soft, no matter how much ‘sucking’ in I do. And I have already well and truly outgrown my regular bra, opting instead for one without an underwire. What I miss? I really missed regular sushi again this week, although vegetarian sushi rolls are still proving to be a nice compromise.   IMG_2060 Symptoms? Aside from bouts of fatigue, that seem to hit me mid afternoon, I am still feeling really good. I did have a couple of lingering headaches during the week, which no amount of water or fluids could fix, so I suspect that they might be pregnancy related? Cravings? Throughout the last week I have been craving vegemite on (GF) toast. Simple as that. So, I made it my ‘priority meal’ to have when we returned to Australia. It was the first thing I ate when we got home and I loved every mouthful. Food Aversions? None. A big contributing factor to my weight gain thus far I suspect lol! Highlights this week? This week was spent in Las Vegas, where the highlight for me was clearly the trip we took to the Grand Canyon. GC Standing atop the Canyon, staring out to the majestic cliffs, it was hard not to feel emotional and incredibly happy. Knowing that this will be our last overseas trip for quite some time (and our last overseas trip without children!) was certainly amazing and overwhelming, both at the same time.

Pregnancy Update – Week 9

(Another entry from my ‘hidden’ pregnancy diary….) This week’s milestone was again celebrated abroad, as we continued our travels through the USA. From Texas, to San Francisco, it certainly has been one adventure after another! How far along? 9 weeks 4 days How big is baby? This week baby has grown to the length of a green olive. week9 How I’m feeling? I am still finding that I am hit with incredible tiredness mid afternoon, and have been taking short naps when I can. Perhaps due to this I have then been waking up quite early and finding it hard to fall back asleep. I am normally a really good sleeper (ie. can sleep for 8 hours anywhere without any problem) so these interruptions to my sleep patterns are quite unusual for me.   IMG_1664 Weight? No idea. How I’m changing? My body generally feels ‘softer’, particularly through my mid section, and my breasts continue to grow lol What I miss? Soft poached eggs for breakfast. Oh how I would love to indulge in such runny yolked goodness *sigh*.  IMG_1665 Symptoms? Again, aside from fatigue and fleeting moments of nausea, I have been relatively symptom free! Cravings? This week I had a very random craving for fried chicken (ie. KFC chicken). Seriously, I was sitting watching TV when a KFC add came on and I was literally salivating at the thought of crunchy deep fried chicken. I had to laugh, however, given that pre-pregnancy I could not stand the stuff and thought that fried chicken was disgusting! Obviously I haven’t indulged in this craving (due to the wheat content), but it is a funny craving to mention all the same. My milkshake craving on the other hand…. Food Aversions? None. And my waistline has noticed this fact 😉 IMG_1613 Highlights this week? Bike riding around the San Francisco Bay!

Pregnancy Update – Week 8

(Another entry from my ‘hidden’ pregnancy diary….) This week we continued our USA adventures, travelling from Nashville, through Memphis, and finally, to Dallas. How far along? 8 weeks 4 days How big is baby? This week baby has grown to the length of a raspberry!   week8 How I’m feeling? My pregnancy fatigue is certainly lingering, however aside from that I feel really quite good. Weight? No idea IMG_1315 How I’m changing? Nothing major to report here. What I miss? Sushi! We went to a wonderful sushi place with friends this week, and I really missed being able to order the sashimi. Instead, it was vegetable rolls for me. IMG_1292 Symptoms? I have continued to have fleeting moments of nausea, which appear to come on if I haven’t eaten in a while.  But it really is quite mild and nothing, I am sure, when compared to fully fledged morning sickness.  IMG_1316 Cravings? I had a big milkshake craving this week, and I indulged without hesitation. This may not seem too strange except for the fact that I normally drink soy or rice milk, and I actually cant remember the last time I ordered a milkshake from a cafe – I think it would have been over 10 years ago! Mr BBB was well and truly in shock when we sat down at the cafe and the first thing I ordered was a milkshake lol. IMG_1151 My vanilla milkshake courtesy of a cafe in Memphis. And it was pure milky heaven! Food Aversions? Nothing in particular – although salad has started to lose its appeal in favour of carbs. Highlights this week? Continuing our travels across the USA!

Pregnancy Update – Week 5

(Another entry from my ‘hidden’ pregnancy diary …ignore the date of the post – it is incorrect) How far along?– 5 weeks 3 days How big is baby? This week our little one has grown from a poppy seed to an apple seed! week5 How I’m feeling? My anxiety has been the big issue that I am dealing with at the moment. My usual way of relieving stress is to hit the gym for a good hard workout, however given our previous losses I just don’t feel comfortable doing so. So, for now, I am trying to take as many walks as I can (and trying to go easy on myself mentally too!) IMG_0110 Weight? down 0.2kg How I’m changing?  I have noticed a definite ‘softening’ throughout my body which I attribute to the lack of exercise as well as the combination of fertility drugs and ongoing progesterone pessaries (twice daily ugh). This "softening" is obviously not helping my anxiety issues but, again, I am trying to make a conscious effort to go easy on myself. IMG_0112 What I miss? Exercise.  Symptoms? My boobs are still quite tender, and like last week, I continue to have a few twinges in my abdomen and some tiredness. But other than that – I am feeling really good at the moment. Cravings? Nothing really this week. Just a general increase in appetite. Food Aversions? None that I am aware of. Highlights this week? Continuing to get great HCG and progesterone numbers in my blood tests, so much so that I don’t need to have any more for a whole 7 days woot woot. I also met with my specialist this week who has recommended a dating scan at 7 weeks – when we will be in New York!

Pregnancy update – Week 7

(Another entry from my ‘hidden’ pregnancy diary…remember to ignore the incorrect date shown on the post) How far along? 7 weeks 4 days How big is baby? This week baby is about the size of a blueberry. Week7 How I’m feeling? Tired. So very tired. It seems pregnancy fatigue has hit me with a vengeance! I am barely making it through the day without a nap. So although we have been doing a lot of sightseeing, we are taking it fairly slow and I have been going to bed as early as I can each evening.   IMG_0943 (Excuse the ‘I just got out of the shower look?! I am starting to think that I should have put some more effort into getting ready for these photos lol)  Weight? No idea. How I’m changing? My lower belly appears to have grown a little, although I suspect that has more to do with no training and lots of yummy food, rather than anything pregnancy related. IMG_0944 What I miss? This week I really missed being able to have a glass of bubbles when our friends opened a bottle of Moet on our arrival. T’was sparkling grape juice for me instead 😉 Symptoms? I am not having any morning sickness, at all, although I am sometimes getting pangs of nausea in the afternoon which goes away once I have eaten something. Cravings? Carbs, carbs and carbs. Nachos, potatoes – whatever really! IMG_0937  This plate stood no chance when I had an intense desire for crunchy, cheesy nachos in Nashville! Food Aversions? None thus far. Highlights this week? Continuing our amazing USA adventures knowing this will be our last overseas trip before we become parents!

Pregnancy Update – Week 6

(Another entry from my ‘hidden’ pregnancy diary…remember – ignore the incorrect date of the post) How far along? 6 weeks 3 days How big is baby? This week, baby has grown to the size of a sweet pea! week6   How I’m feeling? With all the excitement of starting our overseas trip, my pregnancy anxiety appears to have calmed down, at least a little. I did have a mini meltdown today when I thought by breast tenderness was easing and spent too much time researching the signs of a missed miscarriage. The rational part of me knows that I need to stop googling and relax, which is apparently easier said than done!   IMG_0068  (Excuse the post-workout sweatiness. We had just been for what was to be my first and last run during this pregnancy!) Weight? no idea! How I’m changing? I am still noticing a definite ‘softening’ throughout my body, but other than that I haven’t noticed any further changes this week. What I miss? Margaritas! There is too much Mexican food in the USA – with too many yummy margarita varieties on the menu. Mineral water will have to do. IMG_0069 Symptoms? My boobs are still tender (mostly), although I think they are less tender than they were a week ago. I have still had zero morning sickness, and I am now beginning to think that I might be one of the lucky ones who doesn’t suffer from any. I’ll keep my fingers crossed and hopefully I am not speaking too soon. Cravings? Fresh fruit. And salads. Perhaps it is the warmer weather over here in the USA but I cant seem to get enough!   IMG_0127    Food Aversions? None. It is quite crazy. The last time I was pregnant (but sadly miscarried) I had a huge aversion to all meat. This time around, if anything, I am almost craving meat with every meal. Iron levels perhaps? Highlights this week? The highlight of this week was most certainly having an early dating scan before we left for our trip, during which our little sweet pea measured spot on for 6 weeks. Also, within seconds, we could see our little sweet pea’s flickering heartbeat, and I cannot express enough just how relieved and emotional I was.

Pregnancy Update – Week 4

Since Mr BBB and I were undergoing fertility treatment, we found out that we were pregnant early. Really really early. Like 4 weeks early. IMG_0103 So as you can imagine, the first trimester (and all the ‘increased’ risks associated with the first trimester) felt like it went forever. Luckily for me, however, we did have 4 blissful weeks in the USA during this period, that was a wonderful distraction for my overactive brain. But hey, let’s start this story from the start. My ‘hidden’ baby diaries (a little pregnancy Q &A – with some very dodgy sans-makeup photos) can now be revealed 😉 Pregnancy – Week 4  IMG_9943 - Copy How far along? 4 weeks 3 days How big is baby? This week our little one is the size of a poppy seed.  week4 How I’m feeling? Super excited and super scared all at the same time. Having had two miscarriages previously, and been consumed with the ordeal of fertility treatments for almost a year,  I know that there is a long way to go until I will relax. For now, I am just trying to focus on the positive and keep my anxiety at bay. Weight? I am starting this pregnancy journey certainly at a weight that is more than my ‘happy’ weight, but the fertility drugs certainly played a part in that. IMG_9944 copy What I miss? Exercise. I deliberately took a big step back from exercise this week and pretty much stopped all together. Until I get a few weeks of good blood HCG / progesterone results, I am not wanting to push things. I know that they say you can continue exercise throughout pregnancy, and I plan to (hopefully), but having suffered pregnancy losses previously I am being very cautious at the moment. Symptoms? sore boobs that appear to have doubled in size already lol. Like ridiculously. I also had a few twinges in my abdomen, and some tiredness, but nothing too noteworthy. My sense of smell is also CRAZY strong at the moment. Cravings? Chocolate and soda water with fresh lime. I just cant seem to get enough of either! Food aversions? none at the moment. Highlights this week? Hearing those wonderful words from the nurse – "you are pregnant", and seeing the look of pure happiness in Mr BBB’s eyes when I told him.

Pear-fect dessert

I was searching for a sweet cake recipe that could be made in advance for a lunch we were hosting the following day. With the warmer weather I had pears in mind for the base ingredient, and was lucky enough to find this recipe which I was able to adapt to become wheat-free.

It was a beautiful moist cake, that kept well overnight. The cake was spicy and dense, and the pears were beautifully caramelised. However, we all agreed that it would be even better served warm – fresh out of the oven – with a good dollop of cream. Next winter perhaps!

A word of warning – there is a lot of sugar and butter in this cake, so its probably not the best choice for anyone watching their waistline 🙂

Pear and Almond Cake
Adapted from taste.com.au

180g brown sugar
250g unsalted butter
3 ripe pears, peeled, cored and cut into slices
300g caster sugar
3 eggs
250g gluten free plain flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
80g almond meal
250ml buttermilk

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
2. Grease and line the base of a springform cake tin with baking paper. Sprinkle the brown sugar over the base (it will seem like a lot!). Melt 100g of the butter and pour over the brown sugar.
3. Top the sugar mix with the pear slices, overlapping as you go.
4. Meanwhile, beat the remaining butter and caster sugar for 5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time beating well after each addition.
5. Sift together flour, spices and baking powder and fold into egg mix with the almond meal.
6. Stir in buttermilk, then mix to form a smooth batter.
7. Spread the batter over the pears, and place on a baking tray (this is very important as I found that some of the butter escaped the bottom of my cake tin during the cooking process.
8. Cook for 1 hour and 20 minutes. I covered the cake with foil after 1 hour as I found the cake was starting to brown too quickly.
9. Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool in the tin for 30 minutes. Run a knife around the sides of the cake tin, and invert onto a plate.

Happy baking 🙂

The super berry

There is always an air of excitement in our household when we discover that fresh blueberries are available for a reasonable price. Not long after, a batch of muffins generally appears on the kitchen counter – although they dont seem to last for long.

Blueberries are packed with antioxidants and vitamin C, and are a low kilojoule / low GI addition to your diet. They are even said to promote brain health, preserve vision and protect against cancer. Blueberries really are are quite the super berry, and a perfect ingredient for these light and fluffy muffins!

First, self raising flour and caster sugar are mixed together, with a generous amount of blueberries thrown in.


Add buttermilk (the secret that makes this recipe wonderful!), vegetable oil and an egg and stir the mix until just combined.

Divide the mixture among 12 muffin cases, filling to about 2/3.

Bake in the over for 20 mins then enjoy!!! I guarantee they wont last long 🙂