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“What’s in your bag?”

Photo by English Mamma

After seeing the post on WADs (Wives and Daughters), I could not resist joining in and showing the contents of my bag. Luckily, it is not too much these days after I switched my mammoth handbag for a much smaller version. I love big bags but you just end up filling them with all sorts of useless odds and ends.

So, what is in my bag? My trusty To Do list, small digital camera, chewing gum, diary, Nokia phone, purse (bursting to the seams with club and bonus cards – points mean prizes!), Rennies for the heartburn attacks, keys (with more key ring attachments than keys…), a book on childbirth in Sweden, a couple of pens and the entrance tag for work.

And, even though I’ve only switched over to this smaller bag a week ago, I’m already starting the collection of odd items – you might just be able to see it in the picture – a piece of used tape. I have no idea how or when I acquired that, or just I thought it would be a good idea to place it in my handbag… Am I allowed to blame pregnancy brain?

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The joy of Forsakringskassan

Well, I had been planning to write a post outlining a few details about Försäkringskassan and the forms that need to be filled in to receive föraldrapenning (parental benefits in Sweden). However, despite filling in all of the forms and submitting them, I am still overwhelmed by the process and remain largely confused about how the system really works.

What does not help either is that I keep reading articles about maximising parental benefit but none of the examples that they have provided are relevant to our situation. And when I have asked friends and colleagues for advice, they have admitted that they too find the system a complete mystery.

So rather than the blind leading the blind, I will instead just point those interested in the direction of this page in English on Försäkringskassan’s website and wish you the very best of luck because, believe me, you will need it…

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Week 30 update

How far along? 30 weeks and three days

Total weight gain/loss: Gained around 8 and a half to nine kilos

Stretch marks?: Nothing so far (fingers crossed it stays that way)

Sleep: Intermittant at night with some catch-up naps during the day

Best moment this week: The beautiful sunshine streaming in through the windows today

Worst moment this week: Feeling like my stomach was being stretched as gyermek kicked, punched and grew much bigger

Movement: Yes, and lots of it. I started this week thinking that gyermek was destined to be a football player (which would please his farfar (paternal grandpa in Swedish) immensely since he used to play professionally). Now, I am beginning to think there is a little karate kid in there.

Belly button in or out?: In still (thank goodness) but all squished up. This is a particular source of concern to me since I can barely touch it, it makes me so squeamish (no idea why, maybe the scar along the bottom of it from having my appendix out?)

What I miss: Being able to lie on my back comfortably

What I am looking forward to: Spring, our trip to Copenhagen at Easter, the bowl of blueberry ice cream I am about to eat and, of course, gyermek’s eventual arrival

Milestones: Gyermek reaching the size of a Yorkshire terrier, I guess!

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Baby blog or weather blog?

Well, the snow continues to come (we had a snow storm last Friday night and the weather office told people to stay indoors, followed by the national rail company advising travellers not to go to work on Monday…) and I have been feeling under the weather (sorry, could not resist it).

I am staying indoors, trying to snuggle up and keep warm and so there is not much to report. Been enjoying this little video enormously. Have booked a second Mother-To-Be massage (bliss!). And the extent of my blogging so far this week amounts to an updated blogroll.

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Third trimester visits

third trimester check ups

Photo by Voxphoto (on Flickr)

So now I’m in the third trimester, my visits to the midwife have sped up to every three weeks. Third trimester check ups are a little different.

Third trimester check ups

Every visit we follow the same basic procedure: she measures my belly to see how gyermek is growing, we listen to the heartbeat (and occasionally hear little hiccups!), she takes my blood pressure and then the worst part – a blood prick test on the finger to test my blood sugar level. I dread this for two reasons: first, I am a total wimp when it comes to needles and even this test gets my heart racing; and secondly, I know just how many sweet things I’ve been eating… I know it is terrible, but since I got pregnant I have been a cake and chocolate fiend. (I now have a bit of a reputation at work since I nearly bowled over a colleague in my haste to make it to the kitchen one day when we were having cake…)

After these few tests by the midwife, we sit and have a bit of a chat about how I feel. She seems terribly concerned about stress, which I find quite bemusing as I feel pretty relaxed about most things to do with the pregnancy, and even the birth does not worry too unduly (well, not for the moment, anyway).

For those who can read Swedish, this gives some good information on what to expect during visits to the midwife in the third trimester.

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Howdy partner

Photo by art.com

Not much to add from me for now – it’s all about the snow, the ice, work, the snow…

So instead, here’s a photo that says a little something about the way I walk these days. Yes, if you’re in Stockholm, you’ll be able to identify me – the one muffled in a large black coat, walking like John Wayne…

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There’s snow place like home

Snow drift on our balcony (photo by English Mamma)

So, it’s snowing again… I really do love the snow and, after last year’s grey hell of a miserable winter, I was so glad when the snow came in December. It lightened up the days and made people more cheerful (really, this is true – the moment the sun comes out here in the spring, people stop on street corners and at bus stops, turn their faces to the sun, close their eyes and soak in the rays).

However, I am now beginning to develop a love/hate relationship with the white stuff as it seems that I have got SPD (föglossning in Swedish) or Syphysis Pubis Dysfunction, when the pelvic joints become inflamed. Luckily, I am not suffering too badly with it at present, mainly thanks to my personal trainer (who is also a sports physiotherapist) wrenching me in different directions  taking me through some stretches for the back and pelvis. My midwife says that I would probably barely have the SPD were it not for the snow. Because of the snow and ice on the pavements she says that when outside I tense up my body for fear of slipping over.

So, snow… lovely white stuff or evil menace of the pregnant lady??