Tuesday 15 May 2018

My Car History*


My beloved Mini!
Ever since I was a child I have always wanted to drive so when I started driving lessons just after my seventeenth birthday I couldn't wait to pass my test. Just the thought of being able to get to places by myself whenever I needed or wanted was very exciting. It did take me around nine months to be ready to take the practical test but I passed first time as I had with the theory test. I also already had a second hand car that I'd practiced driving in with my dad, often with some arguing.
But how I loved my first car, a Vauxhall Nova. I remember so well the first journey I drove by myself after passing my test. It was a short drive down to my friends house. It felt amazing being independent albeit a little nerve wracking driving completely alone. My trusty Nova was in my life for the next three years until it was in an accident and sadly written off.
Next I ventured down the new car route, I'd been saving for a while so had a deposit could afford the monthly finance payments. My second car and first 'big purchase' was a Renault Clio. How exciting it was ordering a brand new car, I had to wait a few weeks before it was ready to be picked up, I still clearly remember that day and how I stalled it doing a right hand turn on to the main road as I left the show room! I kept it until 2011 when I decided I wanted a new car, a Mini  to be specific! I bought it before I sold my Clio and again absolutely loved it, even though I had no idea about the 'Stop/Start' function when I first drove it and was confused when the engine cut out when I stopped at traffic lights! I only had it for a year and a half before I sold it due to wanting/needing a five door car when pregnant with Eliot. As my parents were getting a new car they gave me their old one, a Nissan Almera. It saved me from paying out for another car and was ideal for a growing family. When I went back to work full time I decided to go down the new car route again and went for a Renault Captur. My Clio had been reliable and efficient so I was happy to go back to a car brand I'd driven before.  It's still the car I'm driving today.
I feel lucky that with all the cars I've had, I've not had any major issues (touch wood), only problems to do with batteries. The worst case being with the Almera when the battery was cutting out when I was driving which wasn't great and also a little scary on a dual carriageway!
Of course I've replaced a fair few tyres, sometimes with the MOT highlighting the fact they needed changing. I knew worn tyres were pretty dangerous but wasn't aware that tyre blowouts are one of the main causes of car accidents. I've admitted before that I'm not the best at safety checks with my car which is why it's useful to have my dad frequently reminding me. Sometimes it's a bit of a pain to get car jobs done etc which is why it is helpful to book online. If you need new tyres you can reserve tyres online & get free professional tyre fitting from Iverson Tyres Ltd. in London. 
It's really important to do regular car safety checks, such as making sure your tyres are the correct pressure and the tread is not worn beyond the legal limit.
How often do you do car safey checks?

Thursday 10 May 2018

We Are A Turtle Tots 2018 Ambassador

If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen last week that I announced Nola and I were chosen to be one of the Turtle Tots ambassadors for 2018. I was thrilled when I received the email to say we had been selected.
 I have swam myself for as long as I can remember, weekly lessons at my local pool throughout my childhood and as part of PE in primary school. It was a hobby that gave me confidence as it was something I was good at. I always knew that when I became a parent I wanted my own children to swim, one of the main reasons being that it is a life skill. I took Eliot to lessons a couple of months before he turned two then had to stop as the parent & toddler lessons were only on weekdays and I was going back to work full time. When he was three he started lessons again and has been going ever since.
When Nola came along I knew that at some point I wanted her to begin lessons and she has a lot sooner than I expected! We've had a our second lessons with Turtle Tots and she is loving being in the water! As well as being a skill that could save your life and a way to exercise, baby swimming offers many more benefits that I hadn't looked into. The physical benefits include building strength and motor skills. The classes also benefit social and emotional development too, you can read more about their benefits here.
We'll let you know how we get on in our lessons over the next few weeks and keep an eye out for a chance to win a £50 voucher for Turtle Tots swim products and a free taster lesson!   

Friday 4 May 2018

Having A Baby*

I have always known since I was a little girl that I wanted to become a mother. When I was older I did have the worries, 'would I meet someone', 'would it happen for me', 'would it be difficult to get pregnant'?
In my third year of university I missed a period, not because I was pregnant (that was impossible) and started freaking out. Could I be going through the early menopause? I went to the doctor, who was very unprofessional, as well as answering the phone and swearing at his colleague he also laughed in my face when I asked if I could be going through early menopause. I swiftly changed my doctors surgery and after speaking to friends, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) came up. I made an appointment at my new doctors surgery and this time saw a much more understanding and professional doctor. I was referred for blood tests and when the results came back I had a higher level of testosterone than normal. I was then referred to endocrinology at the hospital and took a 24 hour urine test which my uni housemates thought was hilarious. I was also very specific about the day I did the test as I couldn't drink any alcohol which was a very important part of my social life back then! When the results came back they also showed some abnormalities and the endocrinologist said it was highly likely I had PCOS but didn't want to do any invasive scans at that point. As I wasn't planning to have any children in my final year of uni I was happy with that and the plan was for me to have a follow up appointment in a year. When my appointment came through I was actually moving back to my home town as I had finished my teaching degree and had a job. Since 2007 I have not returned to an endocrinology department.
PCOS was always at the back of my mind and I worried it would be difficult to fall pregnant. I always spoke about having a family and when a couple of my friends had babies it made me very broody. In 2012 the other half and I discussed trying for a baby, once my 30th birthday celebrations were out of the way.
Surprisingly I found out I was pregnant less than a month after my birthday. At an early scan the sonographer mentioned there were cysts on my right ovary.
I felt so lucky that it happened as I know that fulfilling the dream of having children is not always an easy journey.
I have friends that have gone down the IVF route  not only because it was hard to conceive but due to genetic reasons. For them I know it was a difficult time. I know that if I had struggled to conceive I would have certainly have seriously considered IVF.
Of course another option is adoption, not only for couples that can't conceive but same sex couples and single people too. Not everyone meets their so called 'the one' to bring up a family but that doesn't mean they can't become a parent, in addition to adoption there is the option of sperm banks and surrogacy. So how much does it cost to get sperm from a bank?  In the UK you're looking at around £800 for a vial of sperm through fertility centres such as Complete Fertility Centre in Southampton.
I can't imagine how painful it is not to have children when you so desperately want them. Fortunately there are options in this day and age to help people become parents and nobody's journey to parenthood is the same.

Thank you so much for stopping by! I appreciate comments and read all of them!