RECIPE JOURNAL: Meatless Monday {1 year 15 weeks}

So we’re into 1 year 15 weeks of Meatless Monday… Into my 26th week of pregnancy… massive drop in energy levels this week but soldiering through…

Here’s my  week in 4:
      1.  We now started our NCT prenatal classes and honestly I cannot recommend them highly enough, so informative, such lovely couples, local and on the same baby timeline as you. Definitely worth the £120 the cost without a doubt, and at times which fit around working hours when you’re still in work. Word to the wise though – they get booked up surprisingly in advance so book as early as you can – like when you are around 15 wks to make sure you get on the best one for your due date. Find out more on their website NCT Antenatal.
      2. This was a quote I saw this week which just spoke to me, always good to aim for the older you get 🙂
      3. The reality of becoming a Mum is really starting to sink in now, we also went to our TAMBA
        Practical Preparing for Parenthood Survival Class this Saturday too and it did make me realise how little I had allowed my head to go to when the boys are here, I think that’s just self-preservation, but still what I do know is I will try my best and make every decision with so much love and I think that is all any of us can do. (NB. also worth doing this class if you are expecting multiples, it is very very good indeed)
      4. OK so it’s just after 9pm on Sunday night as I am writing this and I haven’t exactly put any washing away yet this weekend, however I have booked Monday off work to catch up and also have booked in my Birthday Maternity pamper package, from my wonderful in-laws, as a treat in the afternoon. Washing is always a battle for me, even more so when the house is completely upside-down due to having the decorators in, and full nesting mode going on, but hopefully by the end of this week he would have finished the hall, landing and stairs and be on to the Nursery – fingers crossed 🙂 
Right onto food…

Breakfast:

Fruit toast with homemade jam and fresh tropical juice from the milk man…

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 15 weeks}: Breakfast

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 15 weeks}: Breakfast

Lunch:

Usual meze, vimto, dairylea dunker, piece of my wonderful birthday cake, an apple, 2 clementines and a yogurt…

Dinner:

Crinklys to keep me going whilst my soup and bagel cooked – just a bit of simple comfort food as had no energy to cook… and dark chocolate and milk for pudding 🙂 

Please check out my Pinterest meatless inspiration board: #MeatlessMonday  to gather some pinspiration:

pinterest board

Along with the official Meatless Monday board which I am also now sharing on:

Meatless Monday Bloggers - Official Board

Find out how I got on to Meatless Mondays in the first place by watching this video:

And check out #meatlessmondays on this blog to see all my Meatless Monday posts and recipes. Hope you have a lovely week 🙂

 

 

1,195 total views, 3 views today

RECIPE JOURNAL: Meatless Monday {1 year 14 weeks}

So we’re into 1 year 14 weeks of Meatless Monday… Into my 25th week of pregnancy… this week has been my birthday week and so I have lots of lovely things to pick from to share my week in 4 🙂 

Here’s my  week in 4:
      1.  My husband and I have a lovely tradition on birthdays and anniversaries to leave our card and sometimes a small gift on our bedside table to wake up to in the morning. It still makes me feel like a kid on Christmas morning every time he does it, I feel so special – this was the beautiful card he got me and I found the morning of my birthday, and he even got me a bottle of my favourite perfume too Chanel Mademoiselle which I love love love but only wear when he buys it for me as its so pricey, so it was a really lovely surprise <3
      2. We then went out for a lovely evening meal on my birthday too, this was on the Thursday so not meatless, but absolutely delicious and at a local pub I’d been wanting to try out for ages; The Plough at Simpson, this photo was of our pudding but the whole meal was awesome and the service fab too – and the price reasonable, so whole thing comes highly recommended. 
      3. I got two stunning bouquets of flowers from friends and family at my birthday party on Saturday and then my lovely friend Laura very kindly arranged them for me when she was over on Sunday. I just love Sunflowers! They always put a smile on my face and these autumnal colours just make me feel all lovely and snuggly and like autumn is coming
      4. I saw a cake very similar to this on Instagram or Pinterest months ago and very cheekily reposted with the caption “please someone make me this for my birthday!”, my wonderful friend Kitty almost instantaneously volunteered, she ran out of time herself in the end and got one of her talented friends to make it and it was just the most perfect cake! It was so beautiful and so delicious too – I was truly spoilt on my birthday and count myself exceedingly lucky to be surrounded by so much love and happiness!  
Right onto food…

Breakfast:

Apricot wheats with organic milk and fresh tropical juice from the milk man…

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 14 weeks}: Breakfast

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 14 weeks}: Breakfast

Lunch:

Usual meze, vimto, dairylea dunker, piece of my Dad’s birthday cake made by my lovely Mum, an apple and a yogurt…

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 14 weeks}: Lunch

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 14 weeks}: Lunch

 

Dinner:

Two of my favourite potato cakes from IKEA with some side salad…

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 14 weeks}: Dinner

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 14 weeks}: Dinner

 

Please check out my Pinterest meatless inspiration board: #MeatlessMonday  to gather some pinspiration:

pinterest board

Along with the official Meatless Monday board which I am also now sharing on:

Meatless Monday Bloggers - Official Board

Find out how I got on to Meatless Mondays in the first place by watching this video:

And check out #meatlessmondays on this blog to see all my Meatless Monday posts and recipes. Hope you have a lovely week 🙂

 

 

947 total views, 2 views today

FUTURE LITTLE GHERKINS: Maternity Essentials

I know there is more than a whole ton of advice out there, but I thought I would just do a little post on some items which really helped me in my pregnancy with dealing with the symptoms and just making me feel a bit more human in the hope that it helps others too :). I have gone into clothes a lot in my style my bump posts, so will leave them off this list, but suffice to say comfort, comfort, comfort should be your rule, layering too is great as your temperature is often changeable.

OK here’s my selection:

 

  1. I bought these Anti Sickness Bands when I was in my 1st trimester because I was flying to the states, but they genuinely helped before during and after the flight and are completely drug free 🙂 
  2. Again these Flight Socks were bought for flying, but are really good to keep your circulation going on any journey or if you are standing up for longer than usual, which in turn prevents the dreaded cramp, so definitely worth the investment.
  3. Dairylea Dunkers have been my essential mid morning snack since early pregnancy, but this is also to represent the concept of eating little and often and exactly what you fancy (within reason), this style of eating has really helped my nausea throughout.
  4. Hydration is one of the most essential things to keep on top of whilst pregnant as your body needs more liquid in order to produce and pump round the extra blood for your baby/babies, a pretty water bottle always helps – this Aladdin Aveo Water Bottle – 0.6 L, White Lotus is my fave one I have found to date, and it’s really practical too with a handy wrist strap and is a good size and fits in your car drinks holder too without wobbling :).
  5. Tums Antacid are a definite handbag essential, I am never anywhere without them especially towards the end of the 2nd and into my 3rd trimester I have such horrific acid indigestion, coming back up my throat and this just neutralises it almost instantly, my favourite is the multi fruit flavours as they are definitely the most palatable option.  
  6. Bra Strap Extender! – Revelation! These obviously only will work for some based on how you grow and change but for me I have gone up a chest size so far without going up a cup size and maternity bras are expensive, so these are a God send as mean that I can still use a lot of my pre-pregnancy bras and are so cheap too – like £3 for a pack of 3, well worth getting even if you can only use them for a couple of months. Do remember if you continue to wear your own bras though and they are unwired, stop when they start sticking in you in any way, especially if you plan on breastfeeding/ attempting to as this can damage your milk ducts. 
  7. As my bump gets bigger I have more and more strain and pain in my shoulders whilst sitting, the weight of one of these Shoulder Wheat Bags seems to make so much different as it keeps my shoulders from rising up, it’s all natural and you can put them in the freezer to cool or in the microwave to heat for a couple of minutes as needed too, they come in some really pretty designs (like this one) too. 🙂 
  8. I made a bit of a fad purchase with an oversized pregnancy pillow when I first got pregnant and after using it for one night I quickly realised I didn’t need anything anywhere near that big and quickly took it down the charity shop (thinking someone could make it into a pet bed if nothing else 😉 ), I then did some online research and came across this DreamGenii Maternity Support Pillow, which is 5 * rated on Mothercare and oh my goodness it is amazing! It genuinely is night and day, using it or not! It’s like you can suddenly sleep again, and it isn’t massive and comes with a handy carry case so is easy to take with you if you go away at all, I also took it to the massage appointment I had the other week as it helped me lay down and also the gong bath I went to – I can’t recommend it highly enough as a maternity essential item, so so worth the investment!   
  9. Putting your feet up becomes more and more essential, especially whilst working, the more pregnant you become, it improves circulation and prevents cramps and water retention, I have one of these Footrests at work, which has really helped me but I was actually pleasantly surprised by their price on Amazon and so have today ordered one for myself at home too.   
  10. You don’t have to be a yogi to love a Yoga Bolster – they are fab for stretching yourself out in all sorts of ways, pregnant or not, but when you are pregnant and not really supposed to lay flat on your back laying with your bottom at the bottom of the bolster with it going vertically up your spine is one of my fave stretches and just feels amazing on your aching shoulders.

    Yoga Bolster Position

    Yoga Bolster Position

  11.  This final one is well worth knowing about and to be honest I wish I had known about it earlier, whilst you can’t use heat rub or ibuprofen gel whilst pregnant as a muscle relaxant on aching muscles you can use Vicks and as it is herbal and it works wonders! I’ve put some between my shoulder blades as I have been going to sleep the past couple of nights and it really has made a big difference with relaxing them.

Vicks

Hope this list helps you too 🙂 Please do comment below if you have anything else which I missed which has helped you. Wishing you a happy and healthy pregnancy xx

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RECIPE JOURNAL: Meatless Monday {1 year 13 weeks}

So we’re into 1 year 13 weeks of Meatless Monday… Into my 24th week of pregnancy…

Here’s my  week in 4:
      1.  Let the waddling commence! I am now, according to the Babycenter App, now at the point where our babies are pretty much fully developed, but still tiny, so from now to the end of the pregnancy it’s all about growing and man alive am I feeling that this week! Kicking and stretching and waddling galore, it is a challenge to take at times, but I know that it will all be worth it in the end and that is, as I know I keep saying but am going to say again, a complete privilege that I can do this and it really is amazing if I stop even for a second and think about what my body is actually doing whilst I attempt to get on with normal life – growing two frigging human beings! 12 more weeks to go!
      2.  On Tuesday I went with some of my fave girls for a girls date night to see the new Bridget Jones which came out this week in the UK, it was definitely a bit of a giggle if a bit silly at times, but worth a watch I would say 🙂 and they’re thrown in McDreamy for good measure 🙂 (much better addition that Hugh in my opinion) – oh and I couldn’t help but shed a little tear when her baby was born.

        3. I’ve now, as you may have seen, published two style my bump posts, I’m really enjoying putting them together, though it does take a bit of time to find similar items to what I wear as I generally buy all my clothes 2nd hand, but these sandals I fell for and they were on offer and my current ones, which I have lived in for 3 summers and had had it so I decided to treat myself 🙂 

        4. The week ended with a very special day indeed – my lovely Dad’s 70th Birthday – we’re about to go for lunch to celebrate but here is what I posted on Facebook…

Right onto food…

Breakfast:

Honey on toast and a glass of pineapple and lime juice.

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 13 weeks}: Breakfast

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 13 weeks}: Breakfast

Lunch:

Jacket potato with cheese and chive (a bit of a faff to put together in the morning to be fair but yummy at lunch time), some slices of cantaloupe melon, a jam jar of salad, an apple, dairylea dunker, a yogurt and a pack of mini Maryland cookies, oh and a bottle of orange and mango squash to drink in my new drinks bottle.

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 13 weeks}: Lunch

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 13 weeks}: Lunch

I thought it was high time I treated myself to a decent water bottle this week, whilst I love my owl jam jar I got a few months ago unfortunately it isn’t very practical for going out and about, there is no seal for if you want to put it in a bag and it doesn’t fit in a car drinks holder, I will still keep it for using round the house as I do love it but here is the one I decided to get for day-to-day, out and about and have to say after week of using it I’m loving it 🙂 Get your own on Amazon using the link below:


 

 

 

Dinner:

We were out at Prezzo for my gorgeous Anna’s birthday celebrations, so I went for my favourite dish of mushroom and asparagus pasta with a side salad for dinner 🙂 followed by a delicious birthday cake for dessert (but unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of that).

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 13 weeks}: Dinner

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 13 weeks}: Dinner

Please check out my Pinterest meatless inspiration board: #MeatlessMonday  to gather some pinspiration:

pinterest board

Along with the official Meatless Monday board which I am also now sharing on:

Meatless Monday Bloggers - Official Board

Find out how I got on to Meatless Mondays in the first place by watching this video:

And check out #meatlessmondays on this blog to see all my Meatless Monday posts and recipes. Hope you have a lovely week 🙂

 

 

933 total views, 3 views today

FUTURE LITTLE GHERKINS: Style that Bump (part 2)

This is my 2nd in the series of posts about styling my bump, you can check them all out by clicking #stylethatbump

1st Outfit

This dress is so pretty and comfy and was handed to me at a clothes swapping party I went to the other week. Wonderful concept! I am a massive fan of layering, always have vests and leggings you can wear underneath and then a pretty layer of some description for the top, this is a bit of a theme throughout this post to be fair. This dress isn’t official maternity, but this is an empire line which is generally safe territory and really enhances your bump too, in the best way 🙂

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 2: 1st Outfit

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 2: 1st Outfit

Where I got it from:

Navy Maternity Vest Top: New Look (bought 2nd hand on eBay),  Navy Floral Dress: from the clothes swapping party I went to a few weeks ago, Cropped Grey Maternity Leggings: eBay,  Sandals: Clarks

Get the Look (similar items): 

  1. Maternity Button Through Tea Dress (ASOS)
  2. Maternity Navy Longline Ribbed Vest Top (Dorothy Perkins)
  3. Cropped Very Comfortable Maternity Cotton Leggings 3/4 Length (eBay)
  4. Black Flat Leather Sandals (Cloggs)

 

 2nd Outfit

This tunic is also not actually maternity but was an absolute find at a random vintage fair years ago, it was great before maternity, during and after, I just love the design of it. 

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 2: 2nd Outfit

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 2: 2nd Outfit

Where I got it from:

Grey Boyfriend Cardigan: Tescos, Navy Maternity Vest Top: New Look (bought 2nd hand on eBay) , Ethnic Tunic Top: Warehouse (bought 2nd hand from a vintage fair), Long Grey Maternity Leggings: eBay, Sandals: Clarks

Get the Look (similar items): 

  1. Grey Cotton Boyfriend Cardigan (Fashion World)
  2. Maternity Navy Longline Ribbed Vest Top (Dorothy Perkins)
  3. 70s Afghan Maternity Dress, Blue Gypsy Maternity Dress, Ethnic Maternity Dress, 1970s Psychedelic Hippie Maternity Dress, Small – Large (Etsy)
  4. Comfortable and warm winter maternity pregnancy long leggings with BELLY BAND (eBay)
  5. Black Flat Leather Sandals (Cloggs)

 

3rd Outfit:

Again this dress was an absolute find on eBay – years ago now, but due to it being empire line it still works.

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 2: 3rd Outfit

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 2: 3rd Outfit

Where I got it from:

Grey Boyfriend Cardigan: Tescos, Cream T-Shirt: Primark, Retro Print Dress: eBay, Long Grey Maternity Leggings: eBay, Sandals: Clarks

Get the Look (similar items): 

  1. Grey Cotton Boyfriend Cardigan (Fashion World)
  2. Principles by Ben de Lisi Yellow retro print dress (Debenhams)
  3. Maternity Cream Ribbed 1/2 Sleeve Top (New Look)
  4. Comfortable and warm winter maternity pregnancy long leggings with BELLY BAND (eBay)
  5. Black Flat Leather Sandals (Cloggs)

4th Outfit (for yoga class)

I love this style for yoga – funky backed sports bras, deliberately viewable in racer back tops with funky leggings, you feel so fresh and modern, but they’re so practical too. All of these items aren’t actually maternity but are so comfy and stretchy over my bump 🙂

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 2: 4th Outfit

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 2: 4th Outfit

 

Where I got it from:

Grey Boyfriend Cardigan: Tescos, Vivid Pink Racer Back Yoga Top: TK Maxx, Grey and Pink Sports Bra/Crop Top: TK Maxx, Funky Yoga Print 3/4 Leggings: eBay, Flip Flops: Target

Get the Look (similar items): 

 

  1. Grey Cotton Boyfriend Cardigan (Fashion World)
  2. OULA TANK (Fabletic)
  3. DASH BRA (Fabletic)
  4. SALAR CROP Leggings (Fabletic)
  5. Birkenstock MADRID Ladies Birko-Flor Black (Shuperb)

And that is it! Hope you have found this second insight into my maternity wardrobe both interesting and inspiring. Would, as ever, love to know what you think and if you have any tips yourself about maternity fashion…Until next time, happy thrifting and celebrate that gorgeous bump of yours every day that you have it, it is a privilege that you can 🙂 

 

3,096 total views, 18 views today

RECIPE JOURNAL: Meatless Monday {1 year 12 weeks}

So we’re into 1 year 12 weeks of Meatless Monday… Into my 23rd week of pregnancy… I definitely felt the after effects of overdoing it last week this Monday managing to give myself one of my tension headaches and seize up my back too once back from Cambridge trip – definitely not the one, pregnancy has definitely been a big, and ongoing, lesson on listening to my body and continuing to do so as it constantly changes. This week my mission has been to take it easy and slim down my plans and I feel better for it, just got to continue to do so… This all started with calming down my food plans too, hence a pretty simple array of food this week for each meal. I also was off sick on Monday morning but feeling much better by the afternoon and then just went with what I fancied food wise…

With this in mind I have had a bit more of a reflective week so my week in 4 is made up mainly of quotes which I have seen and liked…

Here’s my  week in 4:
      1.  I saw this quote in my news feed this week and just thought, “what a good way to look at things”, similar to what you are told in a yoga meditation, my favourite of which is when rather than trying to stop your head thinking, which is neon-impossible, just view your thoughts like clouds, don’t try to stop them just let them float by. It’s a visualisation which helps me anyway 🙂 hope it helps you too.
      2. I love barefoot five and avidly follow them on Facebook (well worth a follow)- they posted this quote this week and I thought that it really is just spot on, I love thoughts like this as it just cuts it all down to the basic fundamentals of life and it is just so true 🙂
      3. I reconnected with a close friend this week, which was such a lovely thing, it’s amazing what a high certain people bring to your life – it’s like food for your soul – and something I never take for granted. 
      4. My final one is a bit of a milestone as it is a link to my first ever guest post gig on another blog, in this case Travelling Foodies the creative space of the lovely Stella Ryuk. I am now up to 6 guests posts on my own blog (you can check them out from my collaborations page) and always up for getting more. I also intend to do more guest posts on other people’s blogs, so please contact me if you are either interested in writing a guest post here at JamJarGill or if you have an opportunity for me to write a post for your blog or website.
Right onto food…

Breakfast:

Juice and fresh honey toast (something simple which I always crave when feeling a bit off) along with my prenatal vitamins. 

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 12 weeks}: Breakfast

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 12 weeks}: Breakfast

Lunch:

For lunch I am still happily working my way through my leftover veggie lasagna from year 1 week 9, and I just paired this with my usual Dairylea Dunkers, Mini Maryland Cookies, squash to drink and a plum and an apple.  

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 12 weeks}: Lunch

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 12 weeks}: Lunch

 

Dinner:

Again just kept it simple and went for toast soldiers and a mug of my favourite soup and a yogurt for desert. 

 

Please check out my Pinterest meatless inspiration board: #MeatlessMonday  to gather some pinspiration:

pinterest board

Along with the official Meatless Monday board which I am also now sharing on:

Meatless Monday Bloggers - Official Board

Find out how I got on to Meatless Mondays in the first place by watching this video:

And check out #meatlessmondays on this blog to see all my Meatless Monday posts and recipes. Hope you have a lovely week 🙂

 

 

945 total views, 4 views today

RECIPE JOURNAL: Meatless Monday {1 year 11 weeks}

So we’re into 1 year 11 weeks of Meatless Monday… Into my 22nd week of pregnancy…It was actually a bit of a struggle to pick just 4 photos to summarise this week as I have managed to do so many lovely things, I feel shattered for it though – might have to take it a bit easier next week 😀

Here’s my  week in 4:
      1.  A summary of the carpentry work completed in our house this weekend just gone, new doors, new bannister, new loft hatch, new bookshelf – love it all and will write a blog post going into far more detail when I have a minute – but it was a massive milestone to get it complete so wanted to share.
      2. So this was a funny one – booked months and months ago before I knew I was pregnant, myself and a close friend went to watch the Dreamboys this week! I’ll let you look that one up, but yes it was a right of passage, yes it was entertaining and yes I was glad to be 4 rows back from the stage and in the middle of the row so we could watch others get picked on whilst we weren’t 😉
      3. Had a fab lunchtime shop at my local salvage yard this week and found both a Nursery chair and stool (both which need re-covering but so comfy) and these lovely copper pans which I have now displayed in pride of place in our kitchen for the sum total of £60! What a bargain! 
      4. Ended the week with a long-awaited plan to do a day trip to Cambridge with my two fave girls, the day was just perfect and the weather too, and again I will do a blog post all about it when I have a minute. It did make me realise though that walking around all day is now quite a struggle on my back and hips, legs and feet, so as I say – going to take plans a step down in intensity in the coming week. 🙂 
Right onto food…

Breakfast:

Just the usual granola, organic milk and juice 🙂

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 11 weeks}: Breakfast

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 11 weeks}: Breakfast

Lunch:

Time to use up some left overs, so jam jar of salad and leftover yummy scrumptious veggie lasagna were the main features of lunch, along with the usual dairylea dunkers, 2 apples and some of my lindt chocolate as I had run out of Maryland cookies and the food shopping didn’t come till the evening 🙂 

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 11 weeks}: Lunch

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 11 weeks}: Lunch

 

Dinner:

For dinner I decided to make up a broccoli pasta bake and to make it lighter I used gluten-free pasta, this really did seem to make a difference to how stodgy it was and kept it nice and light. I made it with milk and corn flour as that is what I had in at the time, but I think if I were to make it again I would use some single cream. It’s always tricky with these things to get lots of flavour I find, even if you do add seemingly lots of ingredients, especially when it comes to re-heating. But it was perfectly nice and I have had it again since and just re seasoned with salt and pepper. I don’t think it’s worth me writing you out the recipe however, I would love to hear your tips on how to get more flavour into this sort of dish and stories of whether you have had similar issues. Please find a storyboard of what I did in photos below… 

Please check out my Pinterest meatless inspiration board: #MeatlessMonday  to gather some pinspiration:

pinterest board

Along with the official Meatless Monday board which I am also now sharing on:

Meatless Monday Bloggers - Official Board

Find out how I got on to Meatless Mondays in the first place by watching this video:

And check out #meatlessmondays on this blog to see all my Meatless Monday posts and recipes. Hope you have a lovely week 🙂

 

 

1,248 total views, 5 views today

FUTURE LITTLE GHERKINS: Style that Bump (part 1)

Pregnancy so far has not been the complete romantic notion which I had in my mind, there are very much good days and bad days symptom wise but I am just celebrating the good days and enjoying the good moments and the enjoyable aspects as much as possible. One of those for me is most definitely styling my bump. I am so pleased and proud of it and proud to be part of a generation of women who wholeheartedly celebrate their bumps too, after all its a pretty miraculous thing your body is doing, growing a human, or two, and definitely, in my book, worth celebrating!  

I have been wearing 2nd hand, cheap, hand me down, swapped and thrifted clothes for years now and I love it and the variety it brings you. I personally like the individuality of it too – I would prefer not to wear exactly what everyone else is, I like having an individual sense of style :). There are many ways you can thrift clothes, my favourites include; clothes swapping parties, charity shopping, eBay, Vinted, Car Boot Sales, Facebook selling groups and friends donations. Of course it’s worth noting that this is a fab way to save money once babies arrive too – this goes for both baby equipment and clothes, most of which is much more money than it needs to be new and only gets used for a short period of time, so if you can borrow, share or buy 2nd hand and keep an open mind you can be amazed how much you can save! 

Anyway back to outfits, I plan to do a series of these posts and break down 4 outfits per post and link to similar items in each case, hope you find it inspiring when you put your maternity wardrobe together – I, myself, am finding it so much fun! 

1st Outfit

I love this outfit, it’s so cool and comfy and perfect for a hot summer’s day. None of these items are officially maternity (other than the bra) and this is a good point to be made, knowing what styles to go for to fit your changing body without the need to go for the often more expensive maternity version can definitely help you save, also look at what you already own and use it 🙂 I have had this cardi for years and years and it’s an excellent layering stable, cotton and comfy, the skirt which I picked up at a local charity shop has a nice flexible stretchy waist and so is great both before and after pregnancy, the tunic top is empire line to make the most of the bump without restricting your bump as it grows. Good supportive flat leather sandals are essential to any maternity wardrobe, I got these Clarks ones quite a few years ago and have actually found that I needed to add a hole to the strap this year to make them more supportive, but they are still one of my favourites, this years selection doesn’t seem as pretty, more clunky so I have found an alternative for you in the get the look section below.

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 1: 1st Outfit

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 1: 1st Outfit

Where I got it from:

Grey Boyfriend Cardigan: Tescos, Floral Skirt with Stretchy Waistband: Local Charity Shop, Navy Embellished Top with Tie at the Back : Local Charity Shop, Maternity Bra: M&S, Sandals: Clarks.

Get the Look (similar items): 

  1. Grey Cotton Boyfriend Cardigan (Fashion World)
  2. Elasticated Waisted Patterned Knee Length Skirt (Cath Kidston)
  3. Navy Empire Line Tunic Top (J D Williams)
  4. Black Maternity Bra (M&S)
  5. Black Flat Leather Sandals (Cloggs)

2nd Outfit

Another simple summer outfit made up of non maternity items I already owned. This little red waist belt is one of my absolute favourites and is a hand-me-down from Mum, which she actually wore herself in the 60s 🙂 putting a little belt or tie above your bump (not too tight of course) definitely helps define it and is a really great trick for upcycling outfits you already own into maternity ones.

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 1: 2nd Outfit

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 1: 2nd Outfit

Where I got it from:

Maxi Dress: Tescos F&F, Coral Cardigan: Tescos F&F, Little Red Leather Belt: Hand-me-down from Mum, Sandals: Clarks

Get the Look (similar items): 

  1. Blue & White Maxi Dress (Fashion World)
  2. Coral Cardigan (Dorothy Perkins)
  3. Red Leather Waist Belt (Yoins
  4. Black Flat Leather Sandals (Cloggs)

3rd Outfit:

This entire outfit was sourced from a clothes swapping party which I went to recently and I just love it and its vintage vibe. So so comfy! You just turn up at a friend’s house and bring a bag of clothes which you no longer want and then you all go through them and see if anyone else wants to try them, I got so many treasures there and its all free clothes, anything left over from the party just goes down the charity shop. Such a fab idea! 🙂

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 1: 3rd Outfit

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 1: 3rd Outfit

Where I got it from:

Checked Mamas and Papas Maternity Shirt: Clothes Swapping Party, Full Length Black Skirt: Clothes Swapping Party, Headscarf: Clothes Swapping Party, Maternity Bra: M&S, Sandals: Clarks

Get the Look (similar items): 

  1. Checked Maternity Shirt (George at ASDA)
  2. Black Maternity Maxi Skirt (Elizabeth Brown Maternity)
  3. Retro headband rockabilly self tie hair scarf 50’s headband bandana head scarf (eBay – kristine19862011)
  4. Black Maternity Bra (M&S)
  5. Black Flat Leather Sandals (Cloggs)

4th Outfit

Part from the clothes swapping party, part from my wardrobe, perfect comfy and adaptable summer outfit. I just love this trend for thick strap vest maxi dresses, they are just so flattering and adaptable, I actually bought this one last year as part of a super bargain Ascot outfit, just dressed it up with some chunky fashion jewellery, a bright pashmina I already owned and a nice big beach hat from Primark and I don’t think anyone would have known my Ascot outfit cost me under £20 all in! :D. As for this little Kimono top I picked up at the clothes swapping for layering, this was a little tip I picked up from the fabulous Girls with Glasses in their Maternity Capsule Wardrobe post and it really does add some interest to an otherwise pretty plain outfit. When I went out I just teamed it with my sandals again. 

 

JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 1: 4th Outfit

  JamJarGill: Style That Bump: Part 1: 4th Outfit

Where I got it from:

Black Vest Maxi Dress: New Look, Feather Print Primark Kimono Top: Clothes Swapping Party, Sandals: Clarks 

Get the Look (similar items): 

  1. Black Vest Maxi Dress (boohoo.com)
  2. Feather Print Kimono Top (Tesco)
  3. Black Flat Leather Sandals (Cloggs)

And that is it! Hope you have found this first insight into my maternity wardrobe both interesting and inspiring. Would, as ever, love to know what you think and if you have any tips yourself about maternity fashion…Until next time, happy thrifting and celebrate that gorgeous bump of yours every day that you have it, it is a privilege that you can 🙂 

 

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FOODIE FOOD: Lemon Chicken Pesto Recipe {guest post from Olivia Rose from MyKingCook}

Olivia Rose

Olivia Rose

I love collaborating with local/small businesses and fellow bloggers alike I am excited introduce you to my sixth guest author here at JamJarGill.com, Olivia Rose from MyKingCook.

She is a fellow foodie and contacted me in order to share the below delicious sounding recipe with you.

The premise of her blog is to share her cooking and baking experiences with all the modern parents out there to enjoy delicious meals. She aims to engage readers in easy to make yet tasty recipes through organic foods. She is also caring mother of two kids.

You can also find Olivia on Twitter @mykingcook

 

Lemon pesto freezer chicken meal is a delicious recipe to try out for a family dinner. With all its tangy flavor and gooey cheese, lemon pesto chicken is an ideal dish to prepare, serve and eat. Its preparation only requires a few minutes, and can be made out from simple leftovers in the refrigerator, and does not need any particular cookware.

Below, we are sharing a quick and easy recipe to prepare lemon pesto chicken. The ingredients are easy to find and are available in any grocery store near you. The recipe will also guide you towards preserving the ingredients in a freezer, before cooking. Since the preparation and cooking only requires an oven, people who have newly installed glass top stoves do not need to bother for specific pots and pans for glass top stoves. Only the simplest equipment will yield a tasty dinner time dish.

Lemon Chicken Pesto
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Ingredients
  1. 1.5 lbs. chicken breast pieces (up to 4 pieces) or 10 - 12 breast tenders
  2. 4 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  3. ½ cup pesto sauce ( can be prepared at home or purchased from any grocery store)
  4. 1.2 cup of finely shredded mozzarella cheese
  5. Smoked paprika (optional)
Instructions
  1. Combine chicken, lemon juice, and pesto sauce. Take a large freezer plastic/ polythene bag and place the mixture inside.
  2. Seal the bag after removing all the air
  3. Shake the bag or massage it with the hands to thoroughly mix the chicken with pesto and lemon juice.
  4. Take another freezer bag of a relatively smaller size. Place the mozzarella cheese inside it.
  5. Seal the bag after removing all air from it.
  6. Put both the freezer bags of chicken and cheese into another large bag. Seal it tightly after removing the air. (This is an optional step; it will keep all the prepared ingredients in one place).
  7. Be sure to clearly label this bag. Mention the date and all the cooking instructions on the outer bag.
  8. Freeze in a freezer with a temperature range of 0-5 degree Celsius. When you need to prepare the meal, following are the cooking instructions
  9. Remove the cheese bag and place it into the refrigerator to bring the cheese to its regular flavor and texture.
  10. Thaw lemon chicken mixed with pesto by keeping its bag in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.
  11. When the ingredients are ready, preheat the oven to a temperature of 375 degrees.
  12. Place the lemon chicken along with all the pesto and liquid into a baking dish or a casserole.
  13. Cover the dish with a film of aluminum foil.
  14. Put the casserole into the oven and bake the chicken for 20-30 minutes.
  15. Take out the casserole, remove the aluminum foil and sprinkle all the mozzarella cheese on the top of lemon chicken. Do not re-seal the dish with aluminum.
  16. Bake the chicken for five more minutes to melt and slightly brown the cheese.
  17. The chicken is ready. Sprinkle some smoked paprika for an extra spicy flavor.
  18. It can be served with butter or garlic rice. If you have any extra pesto, it can be served with pesto topped pasta as well.
  19. Made this at home and I am sure you and your family would love this.
So they call me Jam Jar Gill... http://www.jamjargill.com/
 Please do drop me a line at jamjargill@gmail.com if you too are interested in writing a guest post… I am always interested in collaborating with my blogging community 🙂 {N.B. due to twin pregnancy, now in 3rd trimester, I am unable to guarantee a fast turn around on publishing guest posts currently, but I promise I will publish as soon as I am able to, thank you in advance for your understanding}

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RECIPE JOURNAL: Meatless Monday {1 year 10 weeks}

So we’re into 1 year 10 weeks of Meatless Monday… Into my 21st week of pregnancy – scan week! 

Here’s my  week in 4:
      1.  This week was taken over by our 20 week scan in the middle of the week, it’s always nerve-wracking before a scan to make sure that the babies are ok, but also this was the one where we would finally find out the sexes of our babies to be. I’m pleased to report that they were just perfect in every way and was very shocked (initially anyway) to discover that they are both twin boys! This news sunk in over the following couple of days, much as with the news of having twins in the first place, and now it just feels like our exciting new reality. 🙂 We can really start planning properly now, discussing names and starting to buy equipment, it’s all very exciting and mind-blowing again in equal measure! 
      2. Saw this fitness quote this week on pinterest and thought it was just a lovely way to look at doing exercise, and I was happily back to yoga this week after few weeks break due to my yoga teacher being in Thailand on an intense training course. Very happy to get back to it 🙂
      3. These are our new internal doors which we are getting fitted this week – so happily, as the previous owners unfortunately decided to remove the original 1950s quality doors for shitty (excuse my french but best description I can think of) cheap and nasty hollow ones, which never closed properly and wobbled in the frames, for this reason it was essential to get this sorted before babies come as with being cat parents too we need secure closing doors with babies in the house. I will post the final result next week – but very happy indeed to tick this one-off the list 😀
      4. I have been so impressed with the baby gift list website I have found to make a list for both us and others of all the things we need, so much so that I have written a blog post all about it, it’s a completely free website which can be used to store and share all different types of gift lists (Christmas, Birthdays, Kids, Christening, and so on) all in one place and then you can share it to your heart’s content with friends and family 🙂
 
Right onto food…

This week was bank holiday Monday so I was home based for the day 🙂

Breakfast:

Fruit toast with butter, a mug of lady grey tea with milk and honey, a yogurt, a pineapple juice and my pregnancy vitamins.

Lunch:

Dairylea dunker, a glass of vimto, a can of Amy’s kitchen organics tomato soup, a bagel with butter and a packet of crinklys.

 

Dinner:

Double baked jacket potatoes with cheese, chives and cracked black pepper, salad and a glass of pineapple juice.

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 10 weeks}: Dinner

JamJarGill: Meatless Monday {1 year 10 weeks}: Dinner

Please check out my Pinterest meatless inspiration board: #MeatlessMonday  to gather some pinspiration:

pinterest board

Along with the official Meatless Monday board which I am also now sharing on:

Meatless Monday Bloggers - Official Board

Find out how I got on to Meatless Mondays in the first place by watching this video:

And check out #meatlessmondays on this blog to see all my Meatless Monday posts and recipes. Hope you have a lovely week 🙂

 

 

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